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Hot Links: Wednesday, February 5

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Tough night in the desert, Nurse’s rumored asking price, trade deadline needs, and MORE!

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Edmonton Oilers v Arizona Coyotes Photo by Norm Hall/NHLI via Getty Images

Morning, folks!

Tough night last night in Arizona, as the Oilers laid a big fat egg in the desert, getting blanked en route to a 3-0 loss to one of their Pacific Division rivals.

Excuses abound from all corners this morning, but we don’t need to get into it. The Oilers can’t give themselves a pass for games like that for any reason, IMO.

Ken Holland briefly spoke to the media during the intermission last night and spoke to his strategy (or strategies) heading up to the trade deadline. It appears he’s content to let the team’s play dictate what he’s going to do, which is a bit reactionary for my taste, but what can you do?

ESPN made cases for and against every Hart Trophy candidate this season.

News broke yesterday suggesting Darnell Nurse is asking for $8MM per on his next contract. That’s a full yikes from me, folks, and it almost certainly dictates that the prudent path is to move him. Otherwise, they’ll have to come a long way down from that number to have any hope of succeeding with him on the roster.

As well, Jim Matheson suggested the Oilers might start eyeing extensions for Riley Sheahan and Josh Archibald, perhaps even two-year deals for both. It’s so very Oilers for this news to break after both have enjoyed a 15-game heater better than they’ve ever had in their careers.

Some tests for Ken Holland loom, and it will be interesting to see how he navigates them. The Sekera buyout and Kassian extension were two whiffs for me, but the Nurse deal has the potential to really set the franchise back if they get it wrong.

Oilers legend Ryan Smyth was inducted into the IIHF Hall of Fame yesterday.

Otherwise, the Oilers are back in town today before another big Pacific Division tilt with the San Jose Sharks tomorrow night. See you then.

From Us

GAME RECAP: Coyotes 3, Oilers 0. (Copper and Blue)

The SuperFan Podcast – Episode 12 – Rex Codex Libris (Copper and Blue)

GAME THREAD: Edmonton Oilers vs. Arizona Coyotes (Copper and Blue)

Smyth Named to the IIHF Hall of Fame (Copper and Blue)

From Elsewhere

The Desert’s Quiet And Cleveland’s Cold (Lowetide)

Oilers Chasing Third-Line Center, Top-Six Winger? (Oilers Rig)

The Cases For, Against Every Top NHL MVP Candidate (ESPN)

Oilers Get Inevitable Crash After Highs Of Battle Of Alberta Vs. Coyotes (Sportsnet)

Offence From Defence (Super Fan)

Coyotes Put The Clamps On Oilers To Further Jumble Pacific Division Puzzle (CBC)

Edmonton Oilers Come Up Empty In Stunning Loss To Coyotes (Sun)

Darnell Nurse Wants $8 Million: Time to Move Him? (THW)

Versatile winger Josh Archibald, d-zone workhorse Riley Sheahan making their case for contract extensions with Oilers (Journal)

For Money

Pronman’s final grades: Auditing the 2014 NHL Draft (Athletic)

Analyzing the many mistakes made in the 2012 NHL Draft, including the role conventional wisdom played (Athletic)