When things are going well, the rumours kind of slow down. Right now, things are going very well for the Edmonton Oilers so there isn’t anyone talking about whether or not they can trade Jesse Puljujarvi for immediate help or if there’s a defenseman out there who can help fill the void left by Adam Larsson. Wins silence that kind of stuff.
For a guy that writes a rumours blog every week on Oilersnation, that’s not great. However, if they can turn a red-hot first week into a red-hot first half of the season, then maybe we can start talking about the Oilers being buyers at the trade deadline. Is that incredibly optimistic? Yup. But I’m pretty sure every Oilers fan is feeling a little bit optimistic right now.
If the Oilers do get to the point where they could be buyers at some point, one name I expect to hear a lot of chatter around is JG Pageau. That’s where I’m starting this weeks look at the rumour mill.
SENS ADD A CENTRE
Last week, the Senators acquired forward Vlad Namestnikov in a deal with the New York Rangers. In my rumours blog last week, I mentioned that the Rangers were likely going to move on from him at some point this season considering the fact that he’s a pending UFA.
The deal to Ottawa was a little bit surprising at first. They have Colin White, Artem Anisimov, Chris Tierney, and JG Pageau down the middle right now and while Namestnikov has the ability to play all three forward positions, he is a natural centre.
There was kind of some cold water thrown on the Pageau rumours earlier this year after he came out and said he loves Ottawa and wants to stay there but I wonder if the start to the season and last week’s trade changes anything. He’s playing on the fourth line with Scott Sabourin and Vitaly Abramov right now and is averaging just over 14 minutes a night through the Sens first two games of the season.
That’s far from ideal for a 26-year-old pending UFA who is trying to boost up his value this season. I’m starting to think that a trade may be more likely as we continue throughout the season.
The Senators could benefit from a right-shot defenseman and when Adam Larsson comes back, the Oilers could have an extra RHD kicking around. There might be a fit for a deal at some point this season.
JOSH HO-SANG STILL SEEKING DEAL
Josh Ho-Sang has requested a trade from the #Isles
— Daily Faceoff (@DailyFaceoff) October 3, 2019
Disgruntled Islanders forward Josh Ho-Sang has reportedly let teams know that he is willing to start in the AHL with whatever organization acquires him and is willing to do the grunt work to get another shot in the NHL. The Islanders have let other teams know that they are willing to make a trade with “conditions” in it to make it easier to get a deal done.
Based on those two nuggets of information, I think a deal will get done sooner rather than later. At some point, a team will be worried about their goal scoring and will want to take a flyer on a player with upside. Ho-Sang won’t cost more than a conditional pick and maybe a minor league player. Eventually, a team will find common ground with Lou Lamoriello.
VETERAN UFA BOYLE DRAWING MORE INTEREST
A day after Patrick Marleau signed a one-year, 700k contract with the San Jose Sharks, TSN’s Bob McKenzie is reporting that UFA centre Brian Boyle is starting to draw a bit more interest from some teams.
Eventually, a team will be hit with an injury or will be worried enough about their scoring depth that they’ll pay up a little bit to get Boyle. He scored 18 goals last season and can still be effective on both the powerplay and penalty kill. I don’t think he’s going to score close to 20 goals but he can still be a useful player even if his foot speed isn’t quite there.
Would the Oilers be interested? I would imagine that if they were, a deal would have been done before they signed Riley Sheahan last month. Also, I would imagine that Brian Boyle is being fairly selective with his destination. He’s an older player with a family and I doubt he’s just looking to go to the highest bidder because if he was, he would have signed already.
Like Ho-Sang, it’s all about fit when it comes to Boyle.