Tag: edmonton oilers

Five Teams That Could Use Derick Brassard

Derick Brassard has been under performing a bit since coming to Pittsburgh, but his two years in Pittsburgh are not indicative of who Brassard is as a player nor what he can bring to a team. Brassard is center/left winger, not the fastest player but he holds his own in the quick nature of the game today. At 31-years-old Brassard has 90 playoff games and some Stanley Cup playoff experience.

Brassard started his career in Columbus where he played in 304 games with 169 points until he was shipped to the New York Rangers in 2012 where he made his name in the league. Brassard played 254 games with the Rangers collecting 174 points. Brassard had three seasons in a row with 45+ points until he was sent to Ottawa where he played 139 games with 77 points. Now he is in Pittsburgh bouncing back and forth between the third, second and fourth line. Brassard has spent 1.5 seasons with Pittsburgh 51 games and 22 points later and the Penguins are ready to move on from the aging forward.

Despite his struggles in Pittsburgh Brassard is still a potential 35-40 point player. The pressure in Pittsburgh has been a lot for the forward to handle and he is surrounded by so many great players that he may feel as if he is not getting his fair share. His confidence is surely low, he needs a shake up some new scenery to perhaps give his career one more shot until teams really start giving up on the tenured forward. At 31, 753 regular season games and 90 playoff games, these five teams could use Brassard.

  1. Edmonton Oilers: The Oilers are on a full-court press to make the playoffs. Brassard is not exactly what they are looking for but look at him as a piece to a puzzle, he will fit but they still need one more guy. The Oilers lack forward depth and scoring depth, plus anyone who plays with Connor McDavid is sure to revive their career. Brassard can still score, he has a good shot and is more of a grinding, defensive forward. Which he can come to Edmonton and probably score 25 points along side McDavid. Edmonton would also only need to give up Alex Petrovic, Matthew Benning or a Kyle Brodizak/Zach Kassian type player (one or two of these guys) The Penguins need defense and forward depth.
  2. Columbus Blue Jackets: The Blue Jackets are familiar with Brassard and so is John Tortorella. Not to mention the Blue Jackets could certainly use another left winger or center, they have a pretty deep line up but Brassard could slide in with Alex Wennberg/Anthony Duclair or Boone Jenner and Nick Foligno. Columbus could send Anthony Duclair or Josh Anderson over.
  3. Boston Bruins: The Bruins dealt with some injury issues early in the year and could have used Brassard down the middle in November. Still the Bruins are so solid in their top-three but their next two lines are not consistently productive. They have to do a lot of line-swapping to make things work. But Brassard can slide in on the second or third line easily in Boston. Boston can send over one of their bottom six forwards and a pick, the issue is the Bruins are probably weary to get another veteran winger after Rick Nash last year plus they only have 3.8 million in cap space.
  4. Winnipeg Jets: The Jets are a playoff team and a team on the cusp of a Stanley Cup run they need more depth and consistency on their line up. Plus a veteran like Brassard never hurts, his experience goes a long way in the locker room. Brassard can slide in on line three at center with Mathieu Perreault and Branden Tanev. The Jets have a slew of forwards to send, or maybe even Tyler Myers…
  5. Nashville Predators: Much like Winnipeg, Nashville’s is a Stanley Cup team. They are right there, and there time is fading away in my eyes. The Predators have very solid forwards, a good line one and amazing back end but from forward six to nine they could use some work. Brassard can fill in at line two to center Kevin Fiala and Craig Smith. Penguins could get Ryan Hartman or Colton Sissons in return as well.

 

 

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Where Wayne Simmonds Can Land At The Trade Deadline

It confirmed the Philadelphia Flyers are moving on from Wayne Simmonds. The reasons, we do not know. Speculation could be, he is going to be a UFA come the off-season expecting 5.5-7 million a year for a longer term deal. Simmonds has been in a little of a funk lately, only producing 46 points in 75 games last season and only 19 points in 44 games. Either way the Flyers are looking to actively shop Simmonds and are looking for a goaltender, top-six forward and fifth defenseman. Therefore where can we see Simmonds land?

  1. Edmonton Oilers: They need a top-six forward and that’s what Simmonds is plus paring him with Connor McDavid or Leon Draisaitl is a no-brainer for the Oilers. Plus the Oilers can trade Cam Talbot or Darnell Nurse, Kris Russell type defenseman and they have a few picks to give. Simmonds would pair well in Edmonton even though Milan Lucic has been rather unsuccessful recently and Lucic, Simmonds play similar games. Simmonds is a little more used to scoring goals and playing a goal-scoring role.
  2. Colorado Avalanche: The Avalanche have a ton of suitable prospects, Semyon Varlamov and fifth defenseman. Yes, Varlamov, he is a UFA in the off-season, the Avalanche trade Varlamov, get Simmonds and go after Bobrovsky, crazy but a possibility. Either way Simmonds would be a suitable partner for Philadelphia, the Avalanche can give up Samuel Girard or Alexander Kerfoot and Patrick Nemeth, plus a pick for Simmonds and something else.
  3. Columbus Blue Jackets: Word on the street is Sergei Bobrovsky wants to be traded… well the Flyers and Bob can reunite and swap Simmonds for Bob. The only concern is the Flyers will need to give more like a second and Bobrovsky for Simmonds, maybe more. Also Bob is going to cost 7.5 million same as Simmonds so what would be the point? Unless the Flyers are willingly to spend money on a goalie, which they should.
  4. Carolina Hurricanes: If the Hurricanes are interested in trading Faulk, Hamilton or Frolik this could be fit. Again the issue is the Hurricanes need to resign a few players and Sebastian Aho therefore Simmonds will be costly for them. This could be a possibility and Simmonds would actually fit well in Carolina basically a better Justin Williams.
  5. Calgary Flames: A small possibility, the Flames have a ton of defenseman on their backend and Mike Smith and David Rittich to trade if they wanted to shed a goalie it would probably be Mike Smith. Either way the Flames can move Travis Hamonic and Michael Frolik for Simmonds. Although the Flames are hot right now and I would not mess with their roster, the Flames are a suitor.
  6. Pittsburgh Penguins: When are they not in the running? They contacted Carolina about their two defenseman on the block and Ferland. Therefore why not entertain this conversation with Philly and see the offer sheet for Simmonds. He would basically another Patric Hornqvist just younger. Also the Penguins can move Casey DeSmith, Derek Brassard and Jamie Oleksiak. Simmonds would be a great fit in Pittsburgh honestly…

My Top Buyers and Sellers For The NHL Trade Deadline

The NHL Trade Deadline is about seven weeks away, therefore usually around this time, 40+ games, teams making pushes for the playoffs and other teams doing the opposite. A lot of trade talk is about to approach so let’s get you ready for what can be a pretty exciting 2019 NHL trade deadline.

Top Buyers: 

Pittsburgh Penguins: It is no surprise here that the Penguins are again buyers. They continue to be a top-10 team in the NHL that have the tools to be a Stanley Cup team therefore around this time they usually always are involved in trade talks. There most recent trade talk has been with the Carolina Hurricanes for either Michael Ferland or defenseman Justin Faulk or Dougie Hamilton, not all three or two probably just one of the three. Either the Penguins could use another top-six winger but more importantly can certainly use a top-four or even number five defenseman. The Penguins by no surprise can score goals but they struggle to defend consistently, with a defense of Kris Letang (injury issues) Jack Johnson, Brian Dumoulin and Olli Maata they need to add another tool back there.

Toronto Maple Leafs: Much like the Penguins the Leafs are going to be buyers come the deadline, they really do not need any more forward depth due to the fact William Nylander is a third liner almost. The Leafs would have no reason for a forward. The thing the Leafs could use is a top-four defenseman, Ron Hainsey may not cut it much longer for Toronto, Morgan Reilly is proving number one capability and Jake Gardiner is a solid number four but they still another d-man, someone who is a good two-way defenseman. A Dougie Hamilton or Justin Faulk would be perfect but as of now there has not been much from Toronto. The Leafs could also use a potential back-up/fringe starter to help Frederick Anderson before the playoffs come around. Someone who can play at least half the games remaining in the year to get Anderson 100% healthy for the playoffs.

Edmonton Oilers: The Oilers need to make a move for a forward if they want to be a playoff team their current offensive roster is not going to cut it for the playoffs or a playoff run. They need one top-six forward and a borderline top-six/bottom-nine forward soon. The Oilers have tried line scheme after line scheme this season and not much is working consistently. They will probably look to the Rangers for Kevin Hayes, Mats Zuccarello, Vladislav Namestikov or the Senators for a few of their bottom-six forwards, the Blues have a slew of forwards, the Hurricanes Michael Ferland. Either way they need to be inquiring about someone.

Colorado Avalanche: With their 11 million in projected cap space the Avalanche should be shopping for a top-six, bottom six forward. They have the two best players in the NHL right now but someone else needs to supplement those two when the playoff run comes around and playoff time comes. The Avalanche have a lot of young potential but they will need some more proven success. Out there is as mentioned above, the Avalanche will be doing some necessary shopping over the next two weeks or so.

Top Sellers:

New York Rangers: Not a shock to many, the Rangers are definitely over performing considering the roster they have but they are still not a great team. Plus it does them no good to win games right now or not consider being big sellers. They have a few players to shed as well but with Kevin Hayes and Mats Zuccarello current UFA’s in 2019-2020 they will more than likely be trading those two. They have 2 million in cap space and with those two gone it will free up about 9.6 million making them a true contender for Artem Panarin this offseason.

Los Angeles Kings: They have no reason to buy and they do have a few names that can be useful elsewhere. I.e. Tyler Toffoli, Jeff Carter, Dustin Brown, and some bottom six forwards. Not a great year for L.A. but they have around $89,000 in cap space right now with three free agents in 2019 summer and Brown/Carter on unfavorable contracts.

Carolina Hurricanes: I did not expect the Hurricanes to be sellers but it seems their GM is in favor to shed Faulk, Hamilton and Ferland. Therefore making sellers for sure, they have 16 million in cap space and getting rid of two of those three would leave them with a nice dollar amount to sit on in the offseason. Plus they need to free up cap for Sebastian Aho, Teuvo Teravainen, Jordin Martinook, and possibly Justin Williams. The Hurricanes have a ton of UFA/RFA to consider in the offseason and they cannot afford Faulk, Hamilton and Aho therefore we can see these guys selling heavy come the deadline.

St. Louis Blues: I almost want to say why not sell for this team. You have Brayden Schenn, Jaden Schwartz, David Perron, Patrick Maroon, Vladimir Tarasenko, Tyler Bozak, etc. At least two of these guys or even one can go and will provide a decent return. The Blues have rumored to be in talks to shed Vladimir Tarasenko, which I mean sounds ridiculous but realistically this team is not going to win anytime soon, get a good return on the guy sooner than later.

 

McDavid or Crosby? Who is better? Comparing two NHL superstars

Since Connor McDavid came to the NHL, it seems like many experts are saying that he is the best player out there, but don‘t forget about Sidney Crosby, who is also considered as the best player in the NHL. Well, only one of them can be the best, of course.

So who is the best? Or at least who is better? If we take a look at their first years, that is something incomparable, because meanwhile Crosby scored 39 goals, McDavid, limited to play just 45 games because of an injury, managed to score “only” 16 goals. But Crosby played fewer games in his first NHL campaign – 53.

Prominent stars set to dominate NHL for years

But the very next season McDavid scored 41 goals. This number was never achieved by Crosby in his first three years in the NHL. In his first three seasons, Crosby scored more points than McDavid, he beat him in this category 294 to 256 points.

Head-to-head:

  • 1st season comparison : McDavid averaged 1,07 point per game, Crosby 1,26 point per game.
  • 2nd season comparison: McDavid averaged 1,22 point per game, Crosby 1,52 point per game.
  • 3rd season comparison: McDavid averaged 1,32 point per game, Crosby 1,36 point per game.

In their respective first three years in the NHL, both McDavid and Crosby participated twice in the NHL All Star game. Both players won one Hart Trophy, McDavid won two Ted Lindsay Trophies compared to Crosby‘s one. McDavid won two Art Ross Trophies for the most productive player, Crosby “just” one.

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Can any of them challenge Wayne Gretzky one day?

Well Sidney Crosby is exactly 10 years older than Connor McDavid. Crosby won three Stanley Cups in total and also won the MVP honor in those playoffs. Crosby has achieved more collective trophies, two olympic gold medals, World Championship title and World Cup title. So far McDavid has won “just” one gold medal from World Championships.

Based on these numbers and stats and maybe more importantly, based on your own eye-test, please feel free to decide for yourself who is the better out of those two. If you cannot make a decision, please feel free to join our club, you are welcome!

New York Rangers News: Ryan Strome heads to Broadway in exchange for Ryan Spooner

Yeah, not breaking news here we all know by now, but felt the need to cover it. The coverage will RAMP up once I get NHL.TV but anyways the Rangers welcome the “best” Strome to emerge in the league for Ryan Spooner.

Ryan Strome spent his first 4 years with the New York Islanders was traded for Jordan Eberele in 2017-18 off season.  Strome spent 82 games with the Oilers collecting 34 points (13G, 21A) last season. Strome scored 7 goals in the first half of the season and 6 in the second half. He went 22-games without scoring, then scored in his next four games. This is brought to light because this is Strome’s career in a nutshell, he is either ice cold or on fire. A former 2011 1st round fifth overall pick by the Islanders emerged in the league in 2013-14, he played 258 games with the Islanders collecting 126 points. Strome came in the limelight after his 2014-15 50 point season, since then he has not been the caliber player the Islander nor hockey reporters expected him to be. Strome spent 100 games with Edmonton tallying 36 points (14G, 22A). 

His counter part he was traded for Ryan Spooner has been the down the same path as Strome, spending time with three different clubs now in a matter of three years. Spooner came into the league in 2013-14 playing 23 games assisting on 11 goals, without scoring that season. The following year he played again 29 games for 8 goals and 10 assists this time around. Much like Strome, Spooner broke out in his second full season. Spooner played in 80 games in 2015-16 collecting 49 points (13G, 36A) spending another two years with Boston until he was shipped to New York mid-season in 2018. Spooner was involved in the Rick Nash deal many are aware of but Spooner  quickly made his presence known in New York, playing in 20 games tallying 16 points (4G, 12A) for the remainder of the 2018 season. Again, much like Strome, Spooner has just 1 goal and 1 assist on the year. Spooner has the chance to crack a struggling top-six in a hockey crazed market and possibly play alongside the games best Connor McDavid. 

Who won the trade?

Calling it a push. Spooner has 289 games played (46G, 114A) for 160 points in his career vs Strome’s 358 career games (59G, 103A) for 162 points. Both get young forwards with potential that maybe need a change and kick in the a**. This trade is a head scratchier to some because over the summer the Rangers signed Spooner for 2-years 3.1 million a year plus this was a complete shock to many because there were no rumblings, no releases to the public before this, it just happened and some were caught off guard. Strome still also has 2-years of a 3.1 million dollar deal left to him, therefore this really is a push of a trade, nearly the same production, same price tag and sort of similar type of game. Spooner now plays alongside Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Ty Rattie now as Strome plays alongside Lias Andersson and Vinnie Letttier on the fourth line. The Rangers centers are now Strome, Zibanejad, Howden, Hayes as the Oilers left wingers improve to Caggiula, Spooner, Lucic and Khaira

NHL; Have to LOVE it as Milan Lucic sends a message to Mathieu Joseph

Ah, Milan Lucic, we thank you. Well some of us do, the league has not full blown soft as baby sh*t just yet. This is what some older fans love to see and the younger, non modernized, flashy goals, highlights every shift type of fans like to see also. Bravo to Lucic with how the league is nowadays this could result in a 15-game suspension. Have to give this cyborg some credit, sticking up for his team and sending a message to youngster Joseph that his actions have consequences. This happened because Joseph cross checked defenseman Kris Russell and got away with it, so he thought. Therefore Lucic took actions into his own hands and absolutely blindsided the young forward. Lucic did end up getting ejected from the game and not much has been said further about the situation and what will happen, but thank you Lucic.

NHL News; Can the Canucks, Oilers and Islanders continue their success?

Not many expected the standings to look the way they do right now. Besides the Predators, Lightning and Maple Leafs being a top the standings, the rest of the top-10 has some unexpected teams in it.

(6) Vancouver Canucks: 9-6-0; 18 points

  • What has been the Canucks reason for success? Well we know the answer is obvious they are getting supplemental scoring along with decent goaltending. The two biggest reasons the Canucks have struggled for so long is due to not enough depth scoring and inconsistent goaltending. Now, through 15 games the Canucks are ranked 9th in goals for (46) and 6th in goals against (50) but they also rank 19th in goals for per game (3.07), 16th in power play percentage (20.4) and 29th in shots on goal per game (26.9). The Canucks shoot the puck on net the least among all teams besides three, they have a decent power play percentage, rank in the middle to low end of the pack in terms of goals for per game. Along with the fact they are a team that allows a ton of goals against, essentially the only way the Canucks continue this performance is if Bo Horvat, Brock Boeser, Elias Pettersson and Jake Virtanen can continue on this reign of doing all the heavy lifting for Vancouver. Along with the fact Jacob Markstrom and Andres Nilsson can continue to be a solid two-goalie tandem. Right now the Canucks are performing at an extremely unbelievable rate that is destined to fall apart soon. They have 5 players who do all the offensive work for them, with Boeser, Horvat 11 points and Pettersson’s 15 points the next guy up is Markus Granlund with 6 points. It will be tough for Vancouver to continue down this path, I personally do not see this being sustained all year.

(7) Edmonton Oilers: 8-4-1; 17 points

  • After a disappointing 2017-18 season the Oilers made it clear in the offseason they

    Edmonton Oilers 2018-19
    Ryan Nugent Hopkins able to continue his hot start? RNH has 14 points in 13 games thus far…

    were not going to let that happen again. Although they did not acquire many players to their team, they have come out the gate flying looking like a team on a mission. Of course their success comes from the one and only Connor McDavid. McDavid has 21 points in 13 games, 9 goals and 12 assists, after McDavid comes Leon Draisaitl’s 14 points in 13 games and Ryan Nugent Hopkins(RNH) 14 points in 13 games. Aside from McDavid, Draisaitl and RNH the Oilers next line of production is Tobias Rieder with 7 points(7 assists), Alex Chiasson and Oscar Klefbom who also have 6 points(6 assists) and Drake Caggiula who has 5 points(5 goals). The Oilers have very little secondary scoring after McDavid and Draisaitl which is a big concern and was a big issue for them last season. On top of that the Oilers rank 20th in goals for(40) but also 8th in goals against(34), they average just above 3 goals a game while allowing just under 3 goals against. The Oilers are like many teams seeing great production from three players right now, it is early and will these guys continue? We can all guarantee McDavid will, Draisaitl is good for 80 points, can Ryan Nugent Hopkins come out of his shell and break out? Potentially he can but it is not a guarantee obviously. Other than that Cam Talbot will need to pick up his play a tad and find a way to bring back his 2016-17 self to help the Oilers continue on this trend. Personally I see this as a possibility, I see the Oilers falling off around the All-Star break though, bubble playoff team.

(8) New York Islanders: 8-4-1; 17 points

  • As we all know the big question for the Islanders coming into the year was what are they going to be able to do without John Tavares? Well it seems they have answered that question pretty nicely through the first 13 games. The Islanders have seen distribution of production across the board leading the team is Josh Bailey with 15 points, then captain Anders Lee with 13 points, sophomore Matt Barzal with 12 points, Brock Nelson with 9 points, three guys with 7 points and two guys with 6 points. They rank 16th in the goals for category among the league with 41 goals and have the second lowest goal against among all NHL teams. They average around 3.15 goals for and 2.31 goals against, their power play is ranked 13th (22.5). On top of it all their goaltending has been much better, Thomas Greiss has a 1.85 goals against in 6 games started and a .944 save percentage along with Robin Lehner’s 2.45 goals against in 7 games started and .928 save percentage. The Islanders are certainly the opposite of what they were last year, they are actually playing defense, getting support from their goalies and not blowing leads. Many may overlook the Islanders with no John Tavares but it seems as if the players they have now are out to prove something. Plus with a tough Metropolitan division the Islanders can go one of two ways this season middle of the pack or a playoff team. The Islanders are a team that will compete with their divisional opponents and raise their level of play when it comes to other Metropolitan/Atlantic division teams. It is now staying consistent for the Islanders all year round, not just three months. I see the Islanders sustaining this and being a big surprise to many.