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Buyout SZN begins! Will the #Oilers buy out one of their candidates? PLUS: Draft stuff, Tarasenko’s trade request, and MORE!

Winnipeg Jets v Edmonton Oilers - Game Two Photo by Codie McLachlan/Getty Images

Morning, folks.

It begins. The buyout window officially opened late last night, which means James Neal and/or Mikko Koskinen could see their brief Oilers careers come to an end as early as immediately. They could get bought out as I write this.

Me, personally, I’d buy out Neal for the cap savings in the next two years, but I’d be keeping Mikko Koskinen’s salary on the books. Maybe he gets pinched in expansion. Or maybe he doesn’t. Either way, there’s just the one year left on his deal and eating that for just the one season seems fine to me.

Duncan Keith continues to be strongly linked to the Oilers. It continues to be an inexplicably bad decision I want no part of and am convinced will be terrible for the club.

Vladimir Tarasenko has formally requested a trade from St. Louis, after apparently being at odds with how they’ve handled his recent injury troubles. Tarasenko is owed $7.5MM over the next two seasons, and his most recent season saw his results dip well below his career averages:

Now we’re talking. This is a bet I make all day. The upside would be immense, we’re talking an elite, elite talent (in his prime, anyway) who could be a prime bounce back candidate given the dip is clearly related to an injury and not simply being 100 years old.

But there’s risk. So to mitigate that risk, the acquisition price would have to account for it.

But if the Oilers can get Tarasenko at a depressed price, they should be exploring what a deal with St. Louis might look like:

A deal like that, for instance? Done. Let’s go.


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