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Ranking Chiarelli's First Trade Deadline with the Oilers

Peter Chiarelli's first trade deadline with the Oilers has come and gone. How did he do?

Kim Klement-USA TODAY Sports

The bulk of Peter Chiarelli's trade deadline work came a couple day before the actual deadline but when the dust settled he'd made what I think most would consider to be four deadline deals. He brought in a bottom six forward, a prospect, and three draft picks. He sent away three players and a prospect, all whom would have been free agents this summer; three were restricted but the team likely had no interest in retaining the services of any of them which would have made them unrestricted free agents.

So how'd he do?

Nilsson for Lundstrom and a 5th Round Pick

Anders Nilsson wasn't going to be an member of the Oilers next year. In exchange for something that would have been worth nothing to the team in six weeks Chiarelli got a goaltending prospect in Niklas Lundstrom and a fifth round pick out of the St. Louis Blues.

Making sense of goalie prospects is nearly impossible and I'm not going to pretend to know more than I do, What I do know is that Lundstrom is a restricted free agent at season's end so if the team does in fact see him as nothing more than a warm body they'll be able to simply walk away. No harm, no foul. The other piece that the Oilers acquired is a fifth round pick, basically a player with a one-in-seven or one-in-eight chance of chance of playing 100 games in the NHL. So again, not a whole hell of a lot but more more than nothing.

In the end, this feels like a nothing move but there's a hint of an upside for the Oilers. Grade: C+

Schultz for a 3rd Round Pick

Justin Schultz is not as bad as some fans would have you believe. As I see it, Schultz's biggest problem is the big mistake. And he made more than a few of those. If he created more offence that's the kind of thing you might be able to look past, that's not the case with Schultz though. At least not in Edmonton anymore. The Penguins think there might be something there though and were willing to part with a third round pick to get him.

The problem with Schultz isn't just his play though, there is also the matter of his contract. To make the deal work the Oilers retained 50% of what remains on Schultz's contract, but if the Penguins want to keep him around after this season they'll have to qualify him at 100% of his current salary, which they almost certainly won't do. So even though Schultz is technically a restricted free agent, he's quite likely to be an unrestricted free agent this summer unless you can convince him to re-sign for less money before testing the market.

For a player whose offensive upside is more reputation than reality a third round pick is more than I expected the Oilers to get. Grade: A-

Purcell for a 3rd Pick

Of the players the Oilers traded in the last three days, Teddy Purcell is by far the most useful and the Florida Panthers were convinced to part with a third round pick in order to acquire his services.

Purcell's offensive numbers have been a little short of his ice time in Edmonton and at $4.5M he's not exactly a bargain. That said, his possession numbers are very strong and I would absolutely consider bringing him back this summer if the price was more team friendly. I'd also be very surprised if the Oilers did that. Despite being listed at 6'2" and 195 lbs, Purcell never really hits anyone; the only Oilers forward with fewer hits per game this season is Connor McDavid. Chiarelli talks about getting bigger and I doubt Purcell is what he means by that.

With a third round pick the Oilers get a prospect with about a 25% chance of making it to the NHL. I'd have taken another look at re-signing the player myself. Grade: B-

Gernat and a 4th Round Pick for Maroon

The only player acquired by the Oilers at the deadline came long after the deadline had actually passed; that player is Patrick Maroon. Maroon is big but unlike a lot of the size and/or toughness that has been acquired in recent seasons to make the Oilers harder to play against, Maroon can actually play more than most. He's been a positive possession player and with the Ducks retaining one-quarter of his salary there isn't much to dislike about this deal. He's not a risk free acquisition but he's a decent bet to improve the Oilers' bottom six.

That improvement comes at the cost of Martin Gernat and a fourth round pick. Gernat never got past the prospect stage with the Oilers, and with his 23rd birthday on the horizon, looks more suspect than prospect these days. There is very little chance that the Oilers were interested in retaining his rights after this season. Throw in a fourth round pick, not a significant cost when the team has three picks in the third round and two in the fifth.

A nice example of buying low on something with some upside. Grade: A-


I'm surprised by the return for Schultz and intrigued by the acquisition of Maroon. Nilsson isn't a plus or minus, really. And I have concerns about what the Purcell deal might mean in the bigger picture. Overall though Chiarelli did a decent couple days work here. If I had one complaint (and I always have this complaint) it's that it doesn't seem as if the teams that are out of contention ever look to be anything other than sellers. The Oilers don't just need more picks at this point in their rebuild, they need players too, and any time other teams are looking to sell it would be wise to consider buying. Overall Grade: B