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Hot Links: Monday, August 24

Where would Puljujarvi fit? Ken Holland comfortable bringing back Mike Smith? PLUS: A scorched-earth approach to this summer, Marc-Andre Fleury, Joakim Nygard loan, and MORE!

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Edmonton Oilers v New York Islanders Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Morning, folks!

Edmonton is buzzing today as one of its own, Alphonso Davies, is a UEFA Champions League winner after a sturdy performance in the left side of Bayern Munchen’s defense against the likes of Kylian Mbappe, Neymar, and the rest of Paris Saint Germain:

Davies became the first Canadian International to win the award. Owen Hargreaves, born in Calgary, won the Champions League with Bayern and Manchester United (glory glory) during his career, but was capped by the English national team and did not represent Canada internationally. This is a remarkable achievement for a young man who only two years ago was just breaking into the MLS, and who now might be the highest-rated LB in world football. He’s still just 19 years old.

Back to the main attraction: those Edmonton Oilers.

Yesterday, apparently, Mark Spector’s piece about the Oilers’ contract situation included a piece about Ken Holland being comfortable with bringing Mike Smith back for one more season.

I cannot stress enough how horrible a decision I believe that to be.

You simply cannot convince me that there isn’t a better goaltender available to the Oilers for the same — or, perhaps given Smith’s ‘status’ as a long-time veteran guy — less money this summer.

As Sunil noted earlier in August, one of the Oilers first steps this summer should be to evaluate their own decision-making process that led them to conclude Mike Smith was a viable solution a year ago. A year ago. If Ken Holland can’t — or worse, won’t — look to improve and is content to bring back part of the problem (IMO), it’s hard to think he’s the right man for the job.

I know, it’s early.

I know, he had a reasonable first year.

It doesn’t matter. There are some decisions that lay so bare the failings of the decison makers that they shouldn’t be given another opportunity to make one. Think the Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson debacle. If Daryl Katz immediately removed Peter Chiarelli’s ability to make a decision from him after even suggesting that deal, the Oilers might have saved themselves a couple years of anguish.

Mark Spector | Sportsnet

Conference Semis Gambling Preview (Copper and Blue)

Report: Jesse Puljujarvi Expected To Return To Oilers For 2020-21 Season (Copper and Blue)

Could The Edmonton Oilers Trade For Marc-Andre Fleury? (Oilersnation)

Report: Edmonton Oilers GM Ken Holland ‘Would Be Comfortable’ Bringing Back Mike Smith (Oilersnation)

Extreme Ways (Lowetide)

Dissecting The Oilers’ Contract Situation To Find Defensive Improvements (Sportsnet)

Here’s Where The Edmonton Oilers Will Select In The 2020 NHL Draft (Oilersnation)

Another Edmonton Oiler Bound For Europe On Loan, This One From The NHL Roster (Journal)

Where Is Everybody? (Lowetide)

Where Would Jesse Puljujarvi Best Fit In An Oilers Lineup? (Oilersnation)

Oilers Loan Joakim Nygard To Farjestad (Oilers Rig)

Lowetide: What If The Oilers Went Scorched Earth In Front Of 2020 Free Agency? (Athletic)

Lowetide: Examining Matt Benning’s Future With The Edmonton Oilers (Athletic)