Monday, May 24, 2010

The Edmonton Oilers Roster, Before The Big Change

I had an idea after talking with some of my tweeps on Twitter. Maybe we should take a premature look at what the Oilers roster may look like next season.

This is a look at the Oilers they way they stand starting July 1st, plus/minus a few additions.

Fernando Pisani, Mike Comrie, Jason Strudwick and Aaron Johnson are Unrestricted Free Agents and we will assume that none of the get signed by the Oilers except Aaron Johnson. He played well and I could see the Oilers signing him for this next season as they need the help on defence.

Sam Gagner, Andrew Cogliano, Marc Pouliot, Gilbert Brule, Ryan Potulny, JF Jacques, Devan Dubnyk and Jeff Deslauriers are all Restricted Free Agents and we will assume they all do get contracts from the Oilers. At this time, I have no idea on what will happen with JDD and DD. Both won't be on the Oilers and will one of them clear waivers and play in OKC? Will one of the be traded?

Also for the exercise, I'm going to include Taylor Hall (we all know he will be #1) and Magnus Pääjärvi-Svensson. Judging by the way MPS had his season end, I think it propels him enough to concentrate this summer on working hard and he makes the team at the start of the year. Mind you, if he doesn't sign a contract, he won't be in North America next season as I'm sure he'll elect to stay in Sweden. But for this exercise, he signs a contract and makes the team (which I think will happen).

Even though I just said the opposite a few days ago, Jordan Eberle will have his and all his admirers hearts broken (mine included) when Tambellini sends him down to play with the Barons to start the year. Unless Eberle works his butt off all summer and comes to camp stronger, I don't see him making the team over MPS. On the plus side, the OKC Barons will need some hype to get people in the seats and Jordan Eberle can do that. He may just be the leader down there for the time being. The Oilers want winners at all levels and including Eberle to the Barons roster helps. I guess I just needed a day or two before I said that Eberle will be on the Oilers team. Oops! In my opinion, MPS just looked so great at the Worlds, it made me rethink that whole scenario that I talked about a few days ago.

We will also assume that Robert Nilsson, Ethan Moreau and Patrick O'Sullivan are not on the Oilers next season. They will either go to the OKC Barons or they are bought out.

**Unless changes are made -- and Tambellini said there will be -- this will be close to the opening day roster IMO.**

FORWARDS

Magnus Pääjärvi    Shawn Horcoff      Ales Hemsky
Taylor Hall               Sam Gagner        Dustin Penner
Gilbert Brule           Ryan Potulny     Andrew Cogliano
Ryan Stone              Marc Pouliot        Zack Stortini

SPARES: Ryan Jones, JF Jacques, Jordan Eberle, Liam Reddox

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DEFENCE

Ryan Whitney      Tom Gilbert
(Souray Trade)   Ladislav Smid
Taylor Chorney  Aaron Johnson

SPARES: (edit:) Jason Strudwick, Theo Peckham, Dean Arsene, Jeff Petry, Johan Motin

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GOALIES

Nikolai Khabibulin
Devan Dubnyk or Jeff Deslauriers

SPARES: Bryan Pitton, Olivier Roy

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Now that I actually spent the time writing it all out, the Oilers look terrible.

Losing Souray is going to hurt. The defence crew doesn't look very promising at all. If you really try to win games with a Chorney/Johnson pair then you are in trouble. I'm curious to see who the Oilers get back in the Souray trade. But regardless, the Oilers should pick up a 3-4 pairing guy on top of who they get in the Souray trade. They will need experience to teach the kids and his name is NOT Jason Strudwick.

Goaltending has some issues to work out as well. That's a mess I won't get into.

Judging by the Oilers forwards, they still need a good defensive type center who can win draws. Unless the Oilers find a guy for the top two lines, it appears that the 3rd line center won't be Shawn Horcoff (even though I think that's where he belongs).

By looking at this list, it very clear the Oilers have a lot of work to do this summer. I'm sure glad that my name is Smokin' Ray Burnt and NOT Steve Tambellini. At least my summer is going to be fun.

-Written by Smokin' Ray at Oilers Jambalaya-

6 comments:

  1. There is no way Chorney will be in the opening night lineup. The guy needs a full year in the AHL to even catch up to the competition there.

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  2. @LP Completely agree. I wouldn't put him on my team either. He was terrible last year. But with the options the Oilers have, he's most likely is going to be an Oiler.

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  3. I'd say that this is a fair assesment. I am with you Ray, this Oilers team does look terrible.

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  4. Where is Linus Omark? I think there will be more moves made.

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  5. Vince in EdmontonMay 25, 2010 at 9:11 AM

    According to the media reports I've seen, the Oilers intend to bring Strudwick back. They like the calming influence he has on younger players and the example he shows through his work ethic. He's also a great team rep in the community.

    I don't think it's that bad to keep Strudwick as a #7. That was the intention last season. With all the injuries, however, he ended up playing almost every game, and that's where the Oilers ran into problems. Strudwick is not bad when used sparingly, but he is not an everyday player.

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  6. Hey thanks for the comments.

    @Rune: I don't see the Oilers taking on 3 rookies on forward. With Hall and MPS as the best rookies and Eberle to follow, I see Omark in OKC next season and not with the Oilers.

    @Vince: I have read those as well. Maybe I left him out over the fact that I don`t want him and I guess that's not a fair assessment. He very well could, and most likely will be the 7th defenceman.

    While I would give that spot to a different person, Jason Strudwick is more than capable of being "that guy". He has a great locker room presence and he's well liked.

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