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Hot Links: Tuesday, September 8

Are the Oilers interested in Adam Cracknell? PLUS: Off-season targets, potential trades and trade partners, skimming the UFA class, cap space, Tyler Bozak for 3C and MORE!

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Hartford Wolf Pack v Toronto Marlies
Cracknell in 2018.
Photo by Graig Abel/Getty Images

Morning, folks!

First thing’s first:

It will be so very Oilers to trade their best F prospect (sorry, Tyler Benson) to recoup draft picks from other bad trades.

Obviously there should exist a return that makes dealing Puljujarvi palatable in the range of all possible outcomes, but do you trust Ken Holland to even identify it, let alone make it happen? I sure don’t. No teams are as desperate to move draft picks as the Calgary Flames were to move James Neal.

Just once it would be nice to wake up to encouraging news about the Oilers. Just one time.

Speaking of:

Adam Cracknell. Does that name ring any bells? Cracknell played for the Oilers for 8 games way back in 2015-16. He managed one more full NHL campaign the following year in Dallas before spending the majority of his time in the AHL, and eventually moving to the KHL after a very brief cup of coffee with Anaheim in 2018-19.

Cracknell is 35 years old, coming off a season in which he posted 10-14-24 for Kunlun Red Star.

Folks seem to be OK with Holland exploring a deal here because, well, the AHL needs veteran Cs.

I disagree. Whether the Oilers are at 40/50 contracts or not, giving even one of them to a guy who literally cannot help at the NHL level makes no sense to me. You’re telling me the Oilers couldn’t find that kind of veteran leadership in a 27 year old with 5 years (minimum) of pro experience but perhaps a tiny bit of upside for this season and beyond? It makes absolutely zero sense to me. Any defense of it I’ve seen just screams settling to me, and I’m so tired of settling when it comes to this team.

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