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Hitting The Bargain Bin For A UFA Centre

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It's August 9th. The Oilers still need a centre. I'll gladly pay you Tuesday for a hamburger today.

"I'm sorry, who's on the line?"
"I'm sorry, who's on the line?"
Robert Mayer-USA TODAY Sports

We're getting precipitously close to the middle of August.  A little more than a month from now, training camps will open.  The regular season begins on October 9th, where the Oilers surely will dispose of the Calgary Flames by a score of 11-2 or something equally as garish.  Or something.

Of some (major) concern is the 2C spot, which projects to be filled by one of two possibilities, seen here, or here. While i'd like to see Mark Arcobello (or Leon Draisaitl) put a stranglehold on the position, it's not really responsible to just stick him in and hope that he can grab it.  Kind of like if the Oilers were to just thrust Leon Draisaitl into the 3C position without a backup plan, or like they did when Taylor Hall got moved to 1C when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins was out recovering from shoulder surgery. Boy, those were fun times.

The Oilers could fill the hole that was created by Sam Gagner's departure by making a trade for a centre.  While this remains a possibility, any speculation would be spitballin'.

Here are a couple of lotto tickets.  No, none of them are 6'3 and 220 pounds.

SCOTT GOMEZ

Man, you'd think I'm already twelve beers in writing this.  And while that's plausible, it's early afternoon as I think about Scott Gomez becoming an Edmonton Oiler, so I'd really have to have started early.

Scott Gomez appeared in 46 games with the Florida Panthers last year, compiling twelve points.  Most of the games he didn't play in last year were due to being a healthy scratch.  That's twelve points in 528 total minutes of ice time, or about one point every leap year.  That's not a really remarkable number, but you'll be a bit forgiving if his linemates were most often Sean Bergenheim and a near tie between Brad Boyes and Jimmy Hayes.  Rewind the tape a little bit more to when Gomez was scooped up by the Sharks in 2013 where he put up 22 points in 39 games most often alongside Adam Burish and Ryane Clowe.  .56 points per game with Burish and Clowe as your commons isn't too bad.

I don't know if Scott Gomez can successfully anchor a second line for 82 games, but at this point, we're getting kind of desperate.  He made 900K last year, and 700K the year before with San Jose, and he's coming off a year where he was in press row a lot.  He was put on waivers after Florida decided they'd play the young centres en route to winning the Ekblad Olympics.  Having David Perron and Teddy Purcell or Nail Yakupov is somewhat nicer than having Jimmy Hayes and Sean Bergenheim as your partners.

I bet you a phone call from the Oilers would sound pretty good to him right now...

ANDREI LOKTIONOV

Loktionov spent last year with New Jersey before being sent to Carolina at the trade deadline.  Just 24, Loktionov had 22 points in 68 games last year, which doesn't sound too appealing up front, but he's got a few things going for him.  Ten of those points were scored in Carolina in 20 games.   He was one of five 'Canes with a positive RelCorsi (he was third on the team only behind the Staals).  His on-ice save percentage was just .905, which as we know, sucks, and will likely trend upwards wherever he lands.

That's Travis Hamonic that Loktionov ends up getting by.  Not bad.

Loktionov's cap hit was 725K in 2013-14.  Worth a look.   Ring ring.

MICHAL HANDZUS no

SAKU KOIVU not gonna happen

VILLE LEINO that's not funny

JEFF HALPERN nope

None of these names are as appetizing as even Derek Roy or Mike Ribeiro, but they're better than standing pat.

In the meantime, send help.