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Hot Links: Tuesday, September 15

Talking goalies and defense around the table, Yaroslav Askarov at 14, projecting next year’s roster, buying our James Neal, Ilya Konovalov’s start in Russia, zone entry specialists, and MORE!

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2020 World Junior Ice Hockey Championship, Semifinals: Sweden vs Russia
Should the Oilers take a G at 14 OV? This one, specifically?
Photo by Peter Kovalev\TASS via Getty Images

Morning, Oilers fans!

Yaroslav Askarov, the top rated G prospect heading into the 2020 Draft, has been getting a bit of burn around here lately. Most of the top prospect lists put Askarov somewhere in the neighborhood of where the Oilers will be picking, so it’s natural that the discussion of whether the Oilers should take him there has been picking up lately.

For me? It’s a no. Even Andrei Vasilevskiy, arguably one of the best examples of taking a goalie in the first round in the last little while, took four years to become an NHL regular.

Four years from now, Connor McDavid will have two seasons left on his current contract. The timing is not right. To draft Askarov at 14 is to, IMO, prepare for the NEXT rebuild, after McDavid’s gone.

An organization with that kind of foresight — and the ability to pick someone they know can’t help for a few years — would be a nice one to follow, there’s no doubt. Unfortunately for all of us, we chose to follow the Edmonton Oilers. They have neither the foresight, nor the luxury of drafting for future because their current team is so set. No, they need to compete now and their best chance to do so is by taking the best skater available to them at 14 this year.

Sure, they could trade the pick. But do you know of any other teams that are desperate to get out from under their own pick because it’s bad in the room? Otherwise I’m not sure how confident I am that Ken Holland will get commensurate value in a trade for 14OV.

Offseason Roundtable: The D And The G (Copper and Blue)

2020 NHL Draft Preview: Yaroslav Askarov (Copper and Blue)

Hot Links: Monday, September 14 (Copper and Blue)

Offseason Targets: Kevin Shattenkirk (Oilers Rig)

The Overagers (Lowetide)

Edmonton Oilers Prospect Ilya Konovalov Off To Hot Start In KHL (Oilersnation)

Offseason Targets: Dylan DeMelo (Oilers Rig)

Best NHL Forwards At Carrying The Puck Into Offensive Zone (Oilersnation)

Which NHL Team Is Canada’s Best Hope To Win Stanley Cup In 2021? (Sportsnet)

Lowetide: Roster Projections For Oilers, Including Trade And Free Agent Targets (Athletic)

Why The Oilers Should Buy Out James Neal (Athletic)