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Jason Strudwick

The Team 1260 reported a rumour last night (relayed to me via HFBoards) that the Oilers have signed unrestricted free agent Jason Strudwick, a man who last hit double digits in the points column in 1996-97 for the Kentucky Thoroughblades (I wish I was making that up). The signing has been confirmed by Sportsnet.

He's alternately listed as a LW or a defender, depending on where you look, and his spot in the Oilers lineup would seem to be the same one that Mathieu Roy, Taylor Chorney and Theo Peckham are fighting for; the seventh defenseman slot.

According to Behind the Net, Strudwick played easy minutes with poor linemates. His team didn't score (0.10 PTS/60, 1.47 GFON/60) but on the other hand didn't get scored on either (1.67 GAON/60).

Strudwick is from Edmonton originally, and brings size (6'4", 225lbs) and pugilistic ability to the table (10 majors, only 4 minors last season). He hits and blocks shots and brings no offense whatsoever.

Right now, I'd peg this signing as a Matt Greene replacement, and Strudwick should have no difficulty whatsoever filling in against the 4th line filler of the league. By all accounts he's a character guy. Still, there's some upside to this trade. The Oilers have acquired this sort of player in the past, the utility forward/defender with little offense, and it usually goes one of two ways: Scott Ferguson, or Steve Staios. It seems much more probable that Strudwick's performance as an Oiler mirrors the first, but it isn't impossible that it mirrors the latter.