Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 05/20/13 at 01:52 PM ET
from Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal,
Oilers general manager Craig MacTavish simply isn’t going to pay $5 million a season for a second-line player who has world-class ability.
Although Hemsky goes into traffic, gets hurt and plays hurt — both admirable traits — the Oilers can find better ways to spend his salary. They need bigger forwards, even if they don’t have Hemsky’s skill set, which, apart from his first two seasons, has made him pretty close to a point-a-game NHLer.
The problem is that Hemsky has missed 118 games the past four seasons — a red flag for other teams who like healthier players on their roster.
Can the Oilers get anything substantial for Hemsky these days?
“I don’t think there’s a market for him … I shouldn’t say there’s no market,” said former NHL general Craig Button, who now works for TSN. “But the salary cap is coming down to $64.3 million. He makes $5 million for one more year. Would the Oilers pick up half of that to trade him, 50-50 (with another team)? That would still free up $2.5 million in cap space for the Oilers.
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