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Trade For A Top End Defender

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The defense needs serious help and the Oilers need to address it the right way.

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Over at Oil Acumen, Jake Pringle says the way to success is to comb through the wreckage of a disaster and rob from the poor to make the team rich. He would target two defenders: the Panthers' Dmitry Kulikov, a young lefty on a bargain deal:

In other words, he's a player who can be useful in all three disciplines and eat up a significant chunk of minutes at just 22 years old. He's currently in the first year of a two year bridge contract with a $2.5 million cap hit and $3 million salary for next season.

...and Keith Yandle, an established top-pairing guy who might be too expensive for his current team:

The Coyotes recently extended left-shooter Oliver Ekman-Larsson to a 6 year deal (damnit), and he's not alone on the Coyotes' left defense. Rusty Klesla, David Schlemko, Chris Summers and up-and-comer Brandon Gormley are all lefties; which of course is to say nothing of Yandle. OEL's new deal carries a cap hit that is $250,000 higher than the one that Yandle signed, which could possibly be an indication that the writing is on the wall.

The price for both Kulikov and Yandle would be very steep, but if the Oilers want to win before Nail Yakupov is on his second contract, it might be worth paying.

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