EDMONTON OILERS: FINDING A DEREK ROY | Oilersnetwork.com - Edmonton Oilers News and Rumours


In 2014-15 after clearing waivers with the Nashville Predators, the Edmonton Oilers traded for Derek Roy. Roy came in, scored 22 points in 46 games and contributed in a number of ways. While he didn't blow the roof off the building, he was far better than anyone had expected, accompanied by some immediate chemistry with Nail Yakupov.  Yakupov had gone on record at that time calling Roy the best center he'd played with up to that point in his NHL career. 

Derek Roy was a well-traveled veteran with excellent timing in Edmonton. Photo By Jennifer Griggs

Overall Roy's contract wasn't renewed because his game had slowed and his underlying numbers simply weren't enough to demand another opportunity. He has since been seen playing in the Swiss League, but his departure didn't happen without a few fans hoping to see a return.

Roy did some good things in Edmonton, most notably giving other players confidence. His veteran leadership and poise became a real blessing and players who'd underachieved started to have more offensive production. It didn't last long, but there was a feeling in the air, if for only a few games; like the Oilers had struck-lightning. If the Oilers are looking for an inexpensive center in an attempt to repeat lightning in a bottle, there is likely another Derek Roy out in free agency. 

Jiri Hudler  

He's a veteran with a proven track record. In 2014-15 Hudler had 76 points, but came back in 2015-16 with a poorer showing. That said, even his poor year wasn't bad and some players good years and he finished well in Florida. He has 161 goals and 417 points in 676 regular-season games .There's still a lot of gas left in that tank.

Shawn Horcoff 

Edmonton knows this player well. Is he too long in the tooth now? Maybe. But, he's a veteran with a great attitude and could mentor the young guys, helping win key faceoffs. This would be one of those retire in Edmonton situations.

Brandon Pirri 

14 goals and 29 points last season. He has 80 points in 166 regular season games. Also has a bit of an injury history.

Jarret Stoll 

Great faceoff guy with a checkered past. He is a special-teams type signing as he can penalty-kill and he has a bomb from the point on the powerplay. He's not a right-handed defenseman, but he checks off a lot of the needs Edmonton has in getting that powerplay guy.  He also helps a bit at third line center as a right-handed shot. He just may be too slow and have too troubling a past to make it work.

Matt Cullen 

32 points in 82 games last season. He's up there at 39 years of age, but his last five seasons have been steady production. He's also a winner. In 1,294 games over 18 seasons Cullen has 658 points. He has 16 goals and 47 points in 98 playoff games. He's won the cup twice including last season in Pittsburgh. 

Is it Worth It?

None of these players are likely ideal choices for the Oilers, but they are less expensive, short-term contracts that could be traded at the deadline if they have decent years. Edmonton still has needs and potentially one of these players could help fill those needs.

Really, the objective would be to see if a Derek Roy type can be found, sparking some chemistry on a third line and getting some of the less productive Oilers to make that jump forward and better, more well-rounded players. 

But, who cares what I think right? For now, I'll just keep my mouth shut until I feel like spilling my guts again.

Jim Parsons is a business owner, husband, father and sports fan. For more information about Oilersnetwork.com founder and Oil Spill articles author Jim Parsons, click here.

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