Saturday, June 23, 2012
Now that the Edmonton Oilers took care of the easy part of their weekend, selecting Nail Yakupov with the first overall selection of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, Steve Tambellini needs to turn his attention to beefing up the Oilers blueline. While there were rumblings that Phoenix Coyotes defenceman Keith Yandle might be available, that became much more likely after the Coyotes re-acquired blueliner Zbynek Michalek from, the Pittsburgh Penguins, for a third round pick in the 2012 draft, prospect Harrison Ruopp and goaltender Marc Cheverie. With Yandle on the market, Tambellini should do whatever is necessary to construct a deal with Phoenix GM Don Maloney, for the talented defenceman.
In the hours leading up to the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, the buzz around the Edmonton Oilers and the first overall selection was surrounding defenceman Ryan Murray. Seemingly out of nowhere, the Everett Silvertips blueliner had suddenly become the front runner as the guy the Oilers would be taking at number one. While it may have just been a smoke screen to try and create interest in a possible trade for the pick, luckily Stu MacGregor and company decided to go the route the majority of fans were hoping and selected Sarina Sting winger Nail Yakupov.
Friday, June 22, 2012
With the Edmonton Oilers only hours away from making their third consecutive first overall selection at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, speculation continues to surround the pick. Many are still wondering if Edmonton will keep the pick or trade it. While others debate who they should take with the pick. Will it be Nail Yakupov or Ryan Murray? The smart money is on Yakupov but at this stage of the game, only General Manager Steve Tambellini and head amateur scout Stu MacGregor know which way they are leaning.
Thursday, June 21, 2012
Considering this was the first time two Edmonton Oilers had been nominated for a major NHL award in the same season since 1988, one can't be to disappointed with the fact that both Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle fell just short of bringing home some hardware from the NHL Awards on Wednesday night. Eberle finished a close second to Florida defenceman Brian Campbell, who took home the Lady Byng. While RNH fell short in his bid to become the first Edmonton Oiler to win the Calder Trophy as the league's top rookie, losing out to Colorado Avalanche rookie Gabriel Landeskog.
Wednesday, June 20, 2012
If the Edmonton Oilers decide to take Nail Yakupov with the first overall selection at Friday's NHL Entry Draft, there are some out there that believe it could mark the end of Ales Hemsky in an Oilers uniform. With Yakupov being a left handed shooting right winger, the writing would be on the wall for the highly talented Czech. With Jordan Eberle and the Sarnia Sting winger set to be fixtures on the right side for years to come, Hemsky would obviously not be a long term fit for this organization. However, on a short term basis he would still serve a purpose...and a vital one at that.
Monday, June 18, 2012
With the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. just days away, the Edmonton Oilers are still sitting without a head coach for the coming season. While there is no real need to have their guy in place for the draft, the question is why is it taking GM Steve Tamellini so long to bring someone in? Possible candidates like Norfolk Admirals bench boss Jon Cooper and Los Angeles Kings assistant coach John Stevens, were obviously late additions to the interviewing process because of their team's playoff success but why would they have been talking with the likes of Marc Crawford over the past ten days? Outside of Cooper and Stevens, should they have not taken care of everyone else long ago? The two most prominent names we hear as a possible replacements for Tom Renney, remain former Calgary Flames head coach Brent Sutter and Oilers assistant coach Ralph Krueger. If one of these two end up being their man, than what's the hold up?
Sunday, June 17, 2012
The closer we get to Friday, June 22nd, the clearer it becomes that Nail Yakupov needs to be the Edmonton Oilers third straight number selection. Way back on April 11th, the day after the Oilers won the Draft Lottery, I wrote a piece stating as much and little has changed since. Outside of being floored by an offer, there was no way this organization could not select the talented Russian. They obviously need another blueliner, or two, to help this team take the next step but passing on the Sarnia Sting winger would be the biggest mistake this organization could ever make.