Not long ago, talk of Phil Kessel to the Edmonton Oilers started to heat up. An unrestricted free agent, both Jeff Marek and Elliotte Friedman of the 32 Thoughts Podcast show mentioned Kessel as a fit and Kurt Leavins of The Edmonton Journal has now jumped on board wondering if the Oilers might sign the forward to a low-cost, one-year contract.
Kessel potentially wants to sign on with a contender this summer and the Oilers would make a decent fit. Leavins wrote, after Friedman called Kessel to Edmonton an “interesting idea”:
Marek wondered if Kessel might end up with the Oilers and Friedman considered it “an interesting idea”. Marek believes there’s no denying he would score there. Meanwhile, Leavins writes in his latest “9 Things” article:
I continue to see smoke around Edmonton and Phil Kessel. There are some interesting things about this much-maligned player. He knows how to score. He has 399 NHL regular season markers. And he is durable. Some say his 4.6 S% (less than half his career average of 10.8) was an aberration, a product of playing on a bad team. Could be. But sometimes, it is also an indication that a player just cannot get to the right spots quick enough anymore. Which is it with Kessel?
Related: Oilers Sign Jesse Puljujarvi to 1-Year, $3M Extension
Kessel is currently working on an ironman streak and wants to keep playing. He had a down year in Arizona and many believe he’ll bounce back. That said, money is tight for a number of teams and there is some concern that perhaps his decline in production is a thing teams need to be concerned with. The Oilers took a chance last season on Evander Kane (production wasn’t his issue) and it worked out incredibly well. Could Kessel find chemistry with the Oilers and start scoring in bunches again?
If Jesse Puljujarvi is traded, there’s certainly going to be more buzz around a Kessel signing. Without Puljujarvi, the Oilers will need another top-nine forward who can play with top players.
Next: Maple Leafs’ Victor Mete Reunited with Old Friend Mitch Marner
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