EDMONTON OILERS: CAP CRUNCH TEAMS AND RIGHT-HANDED DEFENSE | Oilersnetwork.com - Edmonton Oilers News and Rumours


Yesterday I wrote a piece citing the merits of Brandon Davidson. My thought was that after missing out on Tyson Barrie, internally, the Oilers may have options. After taking a bit of a closer look at other teams today, I'm even more convinced this is the right play.

If the Edmonton Oilers are going to add a right-handed defenseman, they're going to need to do it on the cheap — that is, unless they plan to move another body out over this season or the summer. If we take a look at close to the cap ceiling teams, we see something interesting. There are not a lot of right-handed defensemen available.


Detroit Red Wings

I like this player. 7 goals and 28 assists for 35 points is decent production, especially considering 5 of those goals came on the powerplay. He's getting up there in age, but still averages 19 minutes per game and has a positive Corsi at 55.2 in 5v5 situations. The trick here will be if his numbers continue at this pace or if his game slows down.  He should get playing time in Edmonton and could slot in as a number two d-man on the right side but I don't see Detroit moving on from him. Their blue line is already depleting and moving Green would create a large hole.

Pittsburgh Penguins

Their right side is not strong. Kris Letang is an MVP type player and they'll be no moving him. Beyond that, it's Ian Cole or Justin Schultz. We know Schultz and what he offers. Ian Cole shoots left, but plays the right side. Pittsburgh isn't a fit.

Philadelphia Flyers

Mark Streit is an aging defenseman that shoots left from the right side. His production is dipping dramatically and with another season at $5.25 million makes no sense for Edmonton. Beyond Streit, the only other regular RD on their roster is Radko Gudas who the Flyers wouldn't move with their cap issues and lack of depth at defense.

Toronto Maple Leafs

Morgan Rielly is their future. He's a right defenseman who shoots left. Toronto wouldn't move him and it's not a true fit. Stephane Robidas provides about as much offense as Mark Fayne. Connor Carrick is a right-shooting, right-handed blueliner, but also a prospect. He's too young to make an immediate impact.

Montreal Canadiens

Shouldn't have to explain the issues with taking on a contract like one Shea Weber owns. Big, right-handed, right-shooting powerplay super-hero that also runs $7.8 million over the next gazillion years. One or two more years and I'd take this in a heartbeat. Seven more years and you have to wonder what Montreal was thinking. Would the Oilers dare move to bring Jeff Petry back?

San Jose Sharks

What I wouldn't do to obtain Brent Burns. I would have moved Taylor Hall for him. I would move Jordan Eberle or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins for him. He would be a perfect fit and if he comes up for free agency next year and is available, I hope the Oilers make a play there. Paul Martin is steady, but shoots left and Justin Braun could be a fit. He doesn't bring a lot offensively, which is really what Edmonton needs, but he's got the right size cap hit at the right age.

Los Angeles Kings

Alex Martinez. shoots left and Matt Greene is getting a little old in the tooth. Drew Doughty really is their whole right side in Los Angeles. He'll be relied upon heavily.

Colorado Avalanche

On the right side it's Erik Johnson and Tyson Barrie. Beyond that, the Avs have little depth. It was Barrie or bust when it came to RD out of Colorado.


We could keep going down the list of RD available on cap teams, but we'll find a familiar trend. There really aren't many and any who would be, those teams wouldn't part with. Mike Green is about as close as I could find, but he's expensive, aging and needed in Detroit. It might take something to get him and at this stage, I'm more apt to find an internal solution that create a hole somewhere to add him. That said, if he could be had for prospects and a pick to help Detroit out of some real cap concerns, I'd consider it. I just don't think Detroit would.

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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