How Different Could This Team Look and How Quickly?

So if the rumors are true, and potential trades like Dion Phaneuf for Sam Gagner and Ales Hemsky for Zack Smith were to happen, how quickly would the Oilers look very different than they do today?

If, and that's a big if; these rumors are true, this could be the fastest roster turnover in Oilers history.

With the trade rumors out there, the news that Edmonton has given Shawn Horcoff and his agent permission to speak to other teams about interest in Horcoff's services, and a press conference coming on Tuesday, it could be less than one week and the Oilers will be very different team.

The top six blue could be Smid/Petry, Phaneuf/J. Schultz and N.Schultz/Belov/Potter. That's a lot of different and in my opinion miles better than it was last year. Phaneuf for all his detractors has a lot of game left in him, he's got that nastiness Edmonton lacks and it spreads out the top six quite evenly. Add to that former Toronto Marlie and Eakins friend for life Paul Ranger to that defensive group, which I think the Oilers will, and I'm quite comfortable with the Oilers depth on the blue. Actually very comfortable.

Moving Ales Hemsky gives Edmonton Nuge/Hall/Eberle, Paajarvi/Yakupov/??, Zach Smith/R. Smyth/R. Jones, A. Lander/Mike Brown/??

That seems to leave a lot of question marks. I think there would be more as Lander should start in OKC and Ryan Jones may not be retained.. I fully believe Belanger is gone, as is Smithson and Petrell. The obvious hole exists at 2nd line center, where if Gagner is moved I would keep Horcoff. I'm not sure the Oilers agree.

The Oilers likely feel and they may be correct that Edmonton should be able to wait for compliance buy-outs. There are bound to be centers available from Danny Briere to Brad Richards, to Vincent Lecavalier or to down the depth chart with Adam Hall. All have been rumored to be moving on and that's what's going to make the next two weeks so exciting.

Depth players like R.J. Umberger and Ryan Malone could be picked up for a song and free agents like Viktor Stalberg, Clarke MacArthur and Eric Nystrom could be left when the big tickets go as they always do.

Edmonton should have enough options with the cap room they possess to fill that part of their roster moving guys up and down the lineup. Could or should the Oilers draft a player at the #7 spot like Sean Monahan or Alexander Barkov, both might be players in a deep draft that could get some time on the roster immediately. If they trade the pick, the value is likely enough that Edmonton could pick up an immediate second line center right there.

When the dust settles and the smoke clears come 48 hours after the completion of the Stanley Cup Finals, the Oilers could very much be the 2013 version of the every day Phoenix Coyotes. Wait for left-overs and build a very competitive team with the scraps. The only difference being there could be some very worthwhile scraps.

Edmonton has the elite talent to play top six. The missing pieces should be available in trade or buyout and it could all come together in a matter of 48-72 hours. 


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