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Hot Links: Monday, September 28

2020 Draft goes in 8 days! PLUS: MacTavish’s regret, #Oilers D prospects, State of the Farm, good for Gagner, 3C candidates, possible UFA targets, and MORE!

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Edmonton Oilers v Minnesota Wild
One of many ones that got away.
Photo by Bruce Kluckhohn/NHLI via Getty Images

Morning, folks!

Sorry for the delay this morning, let’s dive right in.

We’re 8 days away from the 2020 NHL Draft, so check in with us all week as Preston and Shona continue with their Prospect Profiles in the lead up. As it stands now the Oilers are scheduled to pick 14th overall, and it’s looking like there will be a few players available there that could make sense for them. I’m still not convinced G Yaroslav Askarov is one of them, but we all know I’ve been wrong before.

It really does seem like Patrik Laine might be on the move this “summer”. He is obviously a supremely talented goalscorer, and a top six that includes Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Patrik Laine, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Kailer Yamamoto, and Jesse Puljujarvi would be the envy of every team in the NHL. They are all young, and could grow and dominate together for the next five years.

But to me, Laine does not represent the kind of player McDavid needs. If there is one thing McDavid doesn’t need any real help with, it’s 5v5 offense. Their powerplay was already arguably the best ever last season, so while Laine would be a nice buffer against some regression moving forward, an upgrade there isn’t as mandatory as 5v5 improvement. Laine’s next deal represents a challenge too. How do you properly value a player who is so good at the hardest thing to do in hockey, but generally pretty poor otherwise?

Patrik Laine 5v5 RAPM (2017-20)

Jake Debrusk. Louie’s boy. Local kid, and, as you’ll see below, decent middle-six NHL player:

Jake Debrusk 5v5 RAPM (2017-20)

But what’s the acquisition cost? Who can the Oilers comfortably move — that the Boston Bruins would give up such a player for — while still coming out ahead? It probably can’t be their first round pick. It shouldn’t be any of their young D. It could be Jesse Puljujarvi perhaps, but Debrusk is due a raise and if they trade Puljujarvi (who will come well cheaper and IMO, offers as much upside) and sign Debrusk to a big deal, are they in better shape? I think the answer can only be maybe and with that uncertainty it’s hard for me to get behind either of those deals. Maybe something built around a signed (for cheap) Andreas Athanasiou and some of those future considerations we keep hearing about. I could get behind that, assuming again that Debrusk’s next deal represents value for the Oilers.

2020 NHL Draft Preview: Dylan Holloway (Copper and Blue)

Hot Links: Friday, September 25 (Copper and Blue)

Puljujarvi Watch: Orange (Copper and Blue)

Oil Spills: Oilers’ First-Round Draft Pick Options (Sun)

Goals Of The Week: Best From The 2020 Stanley Cup Playoffs (Sportsnet)

Offseason Targets: Oliver Ekman-Larsson (Oilers Rig)

2020 NHL UFA Top 30: Corey Perry And Zdeno Chara (Oilersnation)

Edmonton Oilers 3rd Line Center Search #9 Carl Soderberg (Because Oilers)

Draft Week Post No. 3: The Math Of The Draft (Lowetide)

Monday Mailbag – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins Next Contract? (Oilersnation)

The Wayne Gretzky Statue Is Hidden Under A Pedway. Here Are Five Better Spots For Edmonton’s Most Famous Monument (Journal)

If Edmonton Oilers Plan To Improve Their Netminding, Mike Smith Is Likely On His Way Out (Journal)

Former Edmonton Oilers GM Craig MacTavish Doesn’t Regret Much, But Trading Jeff Petry Is One (Oilersnation)

Draft Week Post No. 2: 16 Shells From A Thirty-Ought Six (Lowetide)

2020 NHL UFA Top 30: Travis Hamonic And Justin Braun (Oilersnation)

The State Of The Oilers’ Farm System (Oilersnation)

Wings Sign Veteran Sam Gagner To 1-Year Extension (ESPN)

Edmonton Oilers 3rd Line Center Search #8 Alexander Wennberg (Because Oilers)

Draft Week Post No. 1: 10 Items Or Less (Lowetide)

2020 NHL UFA Top 30: Ilya Kovalchuk And Corey Crawford (Oilersnation)

NHL Buyout History… Window Opens Today (Oilersnation)

Lowetide: Who Will Be Available If The Oilers Pick At No. 14? (Athletic)

Lowetide: Oilers’ Defence Prospects Are Pushing And Changes Are Coming (Athletic)