EDMONTON OILERS: WILL INVITE JAMES WISNIEWSKI TO CAMP ON A PTO | Oilersnetwork.com - Edmonton Oilers News and Rumours


Bob Stauffer was away from his regular hosting gig on Oilers Now today, but as reported on Twitter by Heather Marginet and shared by Alan Mitchell on Lowetide, Stauffer called in to make a couple interesting points. One of which was the Edmonton Oilers interest in defenseman James Wisniewski.

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Like Lowetide, I did not hear the interview, but a number of Edmonton fans have been pretty vocal about interest in "the Wiz" and it seems some of the media is interested in him too. He checks off a lot of boxes for the Oilers, but he doesn't come without some asterisks'.

Wisniewski is well traveled, having played in Chicago, Anaheim, Carolina, Montreal, New York and Columbus. He has multiple 30 point seasons and a high of 51 points with the Blue Jackets in 2013-14. He also comes with some off-ice injury issues and an on-ice history of some slightly unethical play. Things you might not be able to overlook if you were counting on him in a minute-munching type role.

His latest injury trouble seems to be the only reason he's still unsigned now in August. He missed pretty much an entire year and it likely has teams worried a comeback isn't in the cards. Still, points are rewarded in the NHL and while he's not terribly sound defensively; he's a heck of an offensive defenseman.

I'd actually be surprised if Wisniewski goes all the way through summer without a contract offer from someone. There are always at least one or two teams feeling as though their options are limited and they hand out contracts they likely shouldn't. That said, if he makes it through, I think it's a wise move to invite him on a PTO. He's a little older and slower than he was, but that one-timer from the point makes trying him as a number seven defenseman with some time on the powerplay a real nice idea.

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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  1. As I understand the CBA, NHL teams are limited to 50 contracts. Most teams run with 46 to 48 to give themselves a little wiggle room. I think the Oilers are at 47(could be off by one or two). If they sign a player like Wiz and then waive and release him after training camp, does the team still have to account for the contract within their 50? I know they are still on the hook for most of the salary cap hit but with the guys we are talking about, salaries are often not much more than what they can hide.

    1. That's a good question and a tough one to answer. Based on unconditional waivers, I would think that once released from his contract, it would not count against their 50, but a player still on a PTO is not technically under contract so it would not count towards a player contract. From what I understand, a player cannot play a regular season game on a PTO if that's what you're asking.

    2. What I'm really suggesting is why wait. If for example, the Oilers went out and signed Wizniewski, Jhonas Enroth and Brandon Pirri to one year contracts in the range of $1m to $1,5m the risk may be little more than dollars out of Mr Katz pocket. If the players don't make the roster and get waived, their contracts don't count towards the 50 and I believe the team only has to account for cap hit in excess of about $875k per player. Pretty minimal risk unless there is something bigger that Chia Pete is keeping his powder dry for. I'm still waiting for a Leddy or Boychuk to become available.

    3. If we sign them and waive them they would still count on the 50 man list, that is unless another team picks them up off waivers.


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