Kukla's Korner Hockey
from Larry Brooks of the New York Post,
The Devils pulled off a heist of notable proportions in acquiring young marquee left winger Taylor Hall from the Oilers in exchange for promising young defenseman Adam Larsson.
The Devils entered the offseason with a top-five goaltender in Cory Schneider, a young and relatively deep defense and an admirable work ethic but also facing a huge talent gap at forward between themselves and the best teams in the East.
This deal in which general manager Ray Shero — who when at Pittsburgh acquired Chris Kunitz from Anaheim for Ryan Whitney and James Neal and Matt Niskanen from Dallas for Alex Goligoski — added the 24-year-old Hall from Edmonton goes a long way to addressing that gap.
Hall, the first overall selection of the 2010 entry draft, is a speed-and-skill winger who plays with an edge and can put the puck in the net, getting 26 goals with 39 assists last season. Of all those high-end lottery picks that came before Conor McDavid a year ago, Hall owns the most formidable game.
via Sportsnet's YouTube channel,
from Scott Burnside of ESPN,
So, where to begin with one of the most dramatic half hours in NHL transaction history?
A head-swirling span that saw a swap of two premier defensemen in Shea Weber of the Nashville Predators and P.K. Subban of the Montreal Canadiens, and included the trade of a No. 1 overall draft pick in Taylor Hall to the New Jersey Devils that was followed by the news that Tampa Bay Lightning captain Steven Stamkos re-signed with the team for the next eight years.
Let's just say the collective hockey heart rate is still beating in the red line, even as we begin to consider all that transpired in that magical 30 minutes.
Let's dive in with a swap of Norris Trophy-worthy defenders and marquee players in Weber and Subban, whose names were not once connected in the ever-swirling trade rumor mill leading up to Wednesday's blockbuster but whose swapping of teams will have repercussions in both cities for years to come.
Subban is 27 and under contract through 2021-22 with a $9 million cap hit. So much for Nashville being a small-market team.
Possible more details coming.
added 3:55pm, New Jersey release is below...
from Frank Seravalli of TSN,
So, who is No. 1 on the TSN Trade Bait board du jour? That would be Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, but it depends on the Oilers’ plans in free agency.
For now, Nugent-Hopkins remains a valuable luxury at centre with Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl.
But if the Oilers do indeed land left winger Milan Lucic, who visited Edmonton on Tuesday and got reacquainted with his old GM Chiarelli, then Taylor Hall will rocket to the top of the list.
Hall, 24, is Chiarelli's premier trade chip up front — aside from McDavid and Draisaitl. He presents the best opportunity to bring back a top-pairing defenceman the Oilers so desperately crave on the right side.
more and the top 15 trade bait players listed too...
from Jason Botchford of the Vancouver Province,
To sum up, the Oilers, who are in desperate need of top-tier defencemen and have one of the best young left wingers in hockey, are preparing a massive contract offer for Milan Lucic.
Only in Edmonton.
Just imagine the outrage locally if this was a Jim Benning joint.
If the Oilers end up signing Lucic, and a few in Edmonton think it’s a virtual fait accompli, and it ends up a six-year commitment and squeezes out one of their good young forwards, Vancouver may feel just fine about being among the bridesmaids, yet again.
The Canucks have earned a reputation for finishing second this decade. Remember them chasing Shane Doan, Justin Schutz, Drake Caggiula and the Stanley Cup?
Missing out on a 28-year-old, hard-playing power forward who is asking to be signed well into his 30s would not be the worst thing to happen to the Canucks this off-season.
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
Edmonton Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli has cast a wide net for a No. 1 defenceman for weeks now, and sources say he’s still angling hard for the biggest fish who might be out there — the Montreal Canadiens’ P.K. Subban, who would form an incredible tag-team on the power play with Connor McDavid.
Canadiens GM Marc Bergevin has acknowledged he’s getting lots of calls — Vancouver is likely in there pitching, too, with the No. 5 draft pick — but Bergevin strangely hasn’t publicly shut down any talk of Subban moving.
He’s larger than life in Montreal — he’s No. 1 and 1a with goalie Carey Price in terms of popularity — but the Habs need forwards in the worst way.
Again, Bergevin could have come right out and said Subban is untouchable because he’s a No. 1 defenceman and there are so few of them, but the GM hasn’t done that. So the door is open, at least a crack, for the Oilers to keep trying to acquire the former Norris Trophy winner.
from David Staples of the Edmonton Journal,
This just in from Oilers insider Bob Stauffer, the team employee and CHED radio host, who is in Buffalo covering the draft combine and was speaking to fellow CHED radio host Reid Wilkins on Friday evening. The two talked of the Oilers pursuing unrestricted free agent Milan Lucic and maybe moving out Taylor Hall or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to get a top d-man....
If Lucic goes to free agency, Stauffer said Edmonton would be interested. “Milan Lucic is sort of the physical embodiment of what Peter Chiarelli stated from the get-go needed to happen in Edmonton. He wanted to get bigger, more competitive players… I do think if he goes to free agency the Oilers are going to have a solid opportunity to bring him in, but they’re going to have to move somebody out in the process because they’ve got to address that back-end as well.”...
“So do I think Taylor Hall could be traded? I don’t want to see Taylor Hall traded but he gets you the most. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins gets you the second most. To me, right now, Jordan Eberle, I would say it’s better than 50 per cent chance one of Hall or Nugent-Hopkins goes. I would suggest to you it’s less than a 15 per cent chance at this stage that Jordan Eberle goes. It’s incumbent on the Edmonton to use one of the $6 million guys upfront and use that as asset to acquire the defence…If it’s me, I don’t even trade down at this draft. I take Tkachuk…. It’s quite apparent Matthew Tkachuk has closed the gap on Jesse Puljujarvi something fierce here over the last few weeks.”
via Edmonton press release,
The Edmonton Oilers announced today, they have signed winger Zack Kassian to a one-year contract.
Kassian, 25, appeared in 36 games with the Oilers last season, posting eight points (3G, 5A) and 114 penalty minutes.
The 6’3”, 217-pound winger has appeared in 234 career NHL games, accumulating 74 points (38G, 36A) and 421 penalty minutes. He has also played in eight playoff games, posting six penalty minutes.
The Windsor, Ontario native was selected by the Buffalo Sabres in the 1st round, 13th overall in the 2009 NHL Draft.
Kassian was a Memorial Cup Champion in 2010 with the Ontario Hockey League’s Windsor Spitfires, along with current Oilers forward Taylor Hall.
Edmonton Oilers press release,
The Edmonton Oilers have signed forward Drake Caggiula to a two-year entry level contract.
Caggiula, 21, appeared in 39 games this season with the University of North Dakota in the National Collegiate Hockey Conference (NCHC), posting 51 points (25G, 26A), 60 penalty minutes and a plus 46 rating.
Caggiula led North Dakota to the 2016 NCAA Frozen Four title as an assistant captain and also earned the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player award. Caggiula ended the 2015-16 campaign with a 12-game point streak which included him registering a point in each game at the NCAA tournament, as well as two goals in the NCAA championship game.
The 5’10”, 185-pound winger has accumulated 127 points (62G, 65A) and 94 penalty minutes in 162 career games with North Dakota.
The Whitby, Ontario native has enjoyed success in his time at the University of North Dakota, capturing the 2016 NCAA Frozen Four title and being named the 2016 Frozen Four Most Outstanding Player. He was also named to the All-NCHC second team and earned NCAA West Region All-Tournament Team honors in 2014-15.
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.
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