Thursday, July 1, 2010

July 1st: NHL Free Agency Day

The Oilers entered the day adding to the official total of UFA's. Robert Nilsson was bought out the previous day. It was a long time coming; he had a bad contract and never lived up to 20 games of promise 2 years ago. He had a fan in Lowe who handed him 3 years and 6 million. Finally, we were out from under the worst players on the team from 2010-11. Moreau was claimed and O'Sullivan traded (then bought out by Phoenix) for a valuable asset.

The previous day contracts were not offered to MA Pouliot, Ryan Potulny, Bryan Lerg, Josef Hrabal, Geoff Paukovich, and Slava Trukhno. No surprises here. They either lacked size, physical game, or production.

Not to be forgotten Matt Nickerson became a free agent. He was brought in to sit in the stands for the Springfield Falcons and continued to do so when the Falcons and Oilers were riddled with injury. That's 100K well spent.

When the day opened a few more Oilers left the flock. Two Group 6 UFA's Colin McDonald and Ryan Stone went to the open market. Stone is a borderline 13th or 14th forward in the NHL and McDonald was a pure AHL player, nothing more.

Seven other Oilers hit the open market. Farmhands Dean Arsene, Charles Linglet, and Chris Minard all hit the open market. All are AHL players, not potential NHL players. They are needed in OKC, but at least Minard and Linglet seemed to have been left hanging too long during the mayhem last season.

Aaron Johnson, Mike Comrie, Fernando Pisani, and Jason Strudwick also hit the open market. Johnson and Strudwick are serviceable 6th or 7th defenseman; each brings what the other doesn't. Strudwick has a physical edge and Johnson's offensive ability. You could have both, I wonder if we pitch for either.

Comrie I did like, I thought his season was good despite the role play Quinn imposed on him. I would have tried to retain him. Pisani in my opinion has lost the will to play, he looks like he lost his desire. I would let him go.

Kurtis Foster

Tambellini made one move so far today. He brought in a solid 2nd pairing defenseman in Kurtis Foster. Foster has a booming shot and is a capable power play point man with a right shot. He helped Steven Stamkos get 50 this year. I think he might help Hall and Eberle to a few goals this year as well.

The ones that got away

Robin Brownlee had an article on Oilersnation about two conversations Tambellini had today. The first was Manny Malhotra, a checking center we could use, but who didn't want to be a part of a rebuild. It is understandable. The second was Derek Boogaard. The Rangers offered him twice what he might really be worth and we didn't need the headache of a mad dog on the bench making over 1.5 million a year and at 4 years.

UPDATE

The Oilers have offered John Scott a deal, he's a blueliner from the Wild.  He's 6'8" and can toss them.

I'd like to add Zenon Konopka as well for the same reasons.  Plus, he can be the perfect 4th line center who can win draws and police.

UPDATE #2

The Oilers have signed center Colin Fraser to a two year deal.

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