Hope you’re all finding ways to stay sane now that we’re only a series away from the end of the season. Secure that sanity before it’s all over just in case it’s a long while before the NHL comes back.
As Jeff noted yesterday, the Arizona Coyotes are in financial trouble. Again. Apparently, if you listened to SN960 in Calgary this morning *spits*, you’d have heard Elliotte Friedman say that Alex Meruelo, the newest in a longer-than-it-should-be line of Coyotes owners, has buyer’s remorse. His purchase of the team was completed in August of last year. Amazing.
So what would that mean for the Oilers? Well, word is they’re kicking tires:
First, let’s look at Darcy Kuemper in 2019-20:
Top 20 Goalies (GSAA), Min. 1000 Fenwick Against
That’s the second year running he’s been a top-4 goalie via Goals Saved Above Average. It’s not just a flash in the pan season either. In 2018-19, Kuemper finished third with a gaudy 24.16 GSAA. He’s been truly excellent for two years running now. Kuemper turned 30 in May and, as Jeff noted, he’s due $4.5MM for the next two seasons, which will make fitting both he and Mikko Koskinen on the same roster difficult to justify. Of course, if they’d likely have one of the better tandems in the league heading into next season, but what’s that worth in acquisition? The 14OV seems dear, but G Yaroslav Askarov’s best-case scenario is being as good as Kuemper is now, and even the most aggressive timelines likely won’t see that materialize for at least three years.
As for Oliver Ekman-Larsson, we’ve already talked about this, but:
He’s roughly Oscar Klefbom in terms of value added, but his best years are likely behind him. He had a bit of a bounce back in 2019-20, sure, but he’s had three of his worst four seasons in the last four years. Factor in that he’s due twice as much money for the next billion years, and it’s quite apparent the Oilers should steer clear.
Striking While The Iron’s Hot (Copper and Blue)
Hot Links: Thursday, September 17 (Copper and Blue)
Rock, Meet Hard Place (Lowetide)
UFA Profile: Revisiting Torey Krug As A Possible Fit (Oilersnation)
Andreas Athanasiou: Should Edmonton Oilers Keep, Hold Or Fold? (Journal)
Offseason Targets: Sami Vatanen (Oilers Rig)
Andreas Athanasiou On The Move? (Oilersnation)
World Junior Championship Will Be Hosted In Edmonton Hub (Oilersnation)