If It's Action Oiler Fans Want, TSN Expect Oilers Fans to Get It

It's only a matter of time before players start making their way out of Edmonton to other teams. If Darren Dreger of TSN is correct, Ethan Moreau, Sheldon Souray and Lubomir Visnovsky are the most likely of options.

The reality is, even with a healthy roster, the Oilers won't be a contending team for at least two more years.

At that time, Ethan Moreau's contract would have expired, Sheldon Souray's would have too (or if the Oilers are better than they showed this season by 2011, will be on the last year of his deal), and only Visnovsky would be an Oiler long enough to really grow with whatever new nucleus is a part of this Oilers roster.

As such, all are expendable when you consider the bigger picture that exists in two to three years time. Add Steve Staios, Fernando Pisani, Patrick O'Sullivan and Mike Comrie to that list and you could see a lot of action before the deadline in March.

Then you examine the few players making some strides in different areas, but reaching RFA status at the end of this year; and you realize, the Oilers will also have to try and get Sam Gagner, Andrew Cogliano, Ryan Potulny, Denis Grebeshkov and Gilbert Brule re-signed at fair dollar value.

Edmonton won't likely keep all of them as they are of similar size and skill set, but these names are forwards I see Edmonton feeling have a place on this team down the road. They've showed effort even in the face of defeat and bring elements to this roster that the Oilers would like to use a defining image in the years to come. Only Grebeshkov to me is a question mark, but the Oilers for some reason, have grown an attachment to him.

If TSN's Darren Dreger is right, Edmonton will be in full rebuild mode and a much different team in the next one to two years.

Should they successfully clear out as much salary as TSN expects them to, which is over $12 million in cap space, they'll have plenty of room to add the RFA contracts they consider important, replace the ones that hold out with prospects in the system, and add a few key elements they've been missing through free agency at bargain prices.

It's the idea of the combination of moves that could happen that are finally bringing some excitement to Edmonton in the face of such a horrible losing skid.

Who will be the next to go? What will they bring back in return? What will prospects like Eberle, Svennson and whomever the Oilers draft do with current players ike Hemsky and Penner?

Whether these moves all happen or not, (they likely all won't), Oiler fans don't need much to perk their excitement for hockey. It's what makes Edmonton fans so unique. Win or lose, they love the Oilers. They simply want action. If Moreau, Souray, and Visnovsky all go, action is definitely what Oilers fans will receive.

3 comments:

i hope all 3 mentioned will go...it is essential for them to go if the oil want to rebuild properly. Horcoff should be waived he is the worst oiler this year...what a waste of 5.5 million cap space!!

Anonymous
January 27, 2010 at 4:25 PM comment-delete

I like the rebuild mode - look what Phoenix did after two years.

Anonymous
January 28, 2010 at 9:03 AM comment-delete

I'll understand if all three go, but I'm not sure I'd be excited about moving Visnovsky. With his skill, defenisve awareness and quick stick, hard shot and veteran leadership by example, he brings a lot to the team. He's paid a lot, but nothing outrageous for what he brings.

If I had my choice I'd lose Grebeshkov first to clear the space.

January 28, 2010 at 10:59 AM comment-delete

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