It’s a GAMEDAY, with the San Jose Sharks in town for a pivotal Pacific Division tilt and two critical points on the line. The Sharks have struggled for most of this season, looking up at the rest of the division with their California colleagues and sporting a gnarly -39 goal differential in all situations, good for worst in the conference.
(Ken Holland’s former team, the Detroit Red Wings, have a -96 (!!) goal differential.)
Trade deadline talk continues with Montreal Canadiens forward Tomas Tatar’s name coming up in conversation, along with the usual suspects like J.P. Pageau.
Darnell Nurse’s contract extension continues to be a hot topic, with some more mainstream media guys beginning the grooming process last night:
Those devaluing Darnell Nurse for his imperfections may be bitterly disappointed in what a replacement for him could end up costing. Draft good players, keep good players. https://t.co/ezYeUDCOPC— Kurt Leavins (@KurtLeavins) February 6, 2020
It's time to stop looking for warts in Darnell Nurse's game. Pretty much every defenceman except for Hall of Famers have some. Nurse plays hard pretty much every night, he's tough, he cares, he's at worst a very good second pairing D-man for a long time. Plus he's a good quote— Jim Matheson (@NHLbyMatty) February 6, 2020
Look at that shit. Outrageous. Though news did break yesterday suggesting the two parties were looking at perhaps a two-year deal, which might be the best case scenario if the alternative includes giving Nurse anything close to $8MM per with term.
News from Finland as Jesse Puljujarvi continues to excel, after a goal and two assist night moved him to 18-26-44 in 43 GP. As per @WheatNOil on Twitter, the Liiga hasn’t seen a 21 year old score at that pace since 2002. He’s having an excellent season.
While his NHLe is still ~38 and more indicative of a capable third-line winger, part of my pitch to get him back would include a long look beside McDavid, who is desperate for some skilled help on L1 and who Puljujarvi scored ~60% of the 5v5 goals with in a limited sample.
Otherwise, you know how we do on gamedays: GAME PREVIEW soon (maybe already cuz I’m late) and the GAME THREAD to be posted about an hour before puck drop. Get yourselves hydrated and back here in time to talk shit with the rest of us. See you then.
Hot Links: Wednesday, February 5 (Copper and Blue)
2019-20 Game 54: Sharks At Oilers (Lowetide)
Deadline Targets: Tomas Tatar And Other Canadiens (Oilersnation)
Weekly Rumours: New Names Connected To The Oilers (Oilersnation)
Oilers GM Ken Holland Working The Phones For Left-Winger And Third-Line Centre Ahead Of Trade Deadline (Sun)
Friedman: Edmonton Oilers Have Looked Into Tomas Tatar (Oilersnation)
Inside The Nation: Tired Of The Tired Excuse (Oilersnation)
Oilers’ Nurse Important Part Of Team’s Core, But What’s His Value? (Sportsnet)
A Balancing Act (Oilersnation)
Oilers, Darnell Nurse Talking Two-Year Deal (Oilers Rig)
Lowetide: Drilling Down On Right-Handed Centres For The Oilers To Target Before The Trade Deadline (Athletic)
Oilers Trade Suggestions: 50 Proposals From Readers, With Our Verdict (Athletic)