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It’s Almost Time For Andrej Sekera To Return

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Sekera heads to Bakersfield for a conditioning stint.

Edmonton Oilers v Minnesota Wild Photo by Hannah Foslien/Getty Images

Add me a Klefbom to this mix and things will start looking better on the back end.

Andrej Sekera is looking to play in his first pro games this season after recovering from Achilles surgery this offseason. Sekera underwent surgery in mid-August and was given an indefinite timetable to recover.

It turned out to be a little less than six months. Or, so we hope. Sekera will get a couple of games in Bakersfield, and the Oilers are going to have to shed some cap before he’s able to join the active roster. That means that there will have to be a deal made to shed a player in the next six days to free up roughly 1.23MM.

But wait! The Oilers can bury a contract. Simply ship Ryan Spooner to the AHL (he made it there once already), and they can bury that cap hit, right?

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Remember when the Rangers just buried Wade Redden and his cap hit went away? Yeah, not so much anymore. The Oilers could bury Ryan Spooner and 1.025MM of that cap hit goes away. The Oilers would still be over the cap by about 200K, which (as Bruce says) the Gryba buyout coming back to haunt the Oilers. Eric Gryba collects two paychecks this year, one from the New Jersey Devils and one from his buyout with the Oilers. The Oilers are on the hook for 300K this year (and 300K next year). The fun part? All of Gryba’s 900K could have been buried had the Oilers opted to ship him to Bakersfield.

Keep your eyes peeled in the coming days, when both Sekera and Oscar Klefbom could appear on the roster. Also keep a look out for someone getting shipped out so there can be some room made for the return of Andrej Sekera. The easiest possible move in my opinion would be Tobias Rieder, who has played up and down the left side. He carries a 2MM cap hit, and can probably be swung for a fourth round draft pick to a team that’s looking acquire a mid-six player on the left side.