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Edmonton Oilers

Could See Flurry of Activity for Oilers After Bouchard, McLeod Signed

Once the Edmonton Oilers get their deals done with Evan Bouchard and Ryan McLeod, there could be a series of moves that follow.

According to Allan Mitchell of the Athletic, the Edmonton Oilers won’t be active on the free agent market until the deals for defenseman Evan Bouchard and forward Ryan McLeod are done but expect GM Ken Holland to be busy immediately following those deals being announced.

Mitchell believes the Bouchard bridge contract will come in around $4 million and McLeod will probably get done for around $2 million. That $6 million cap hit means the Oilers either run with a 21-man roster or make another move to free up some cap space. In either scenario, value contracts are where Holland will look and Mitchell suggested names like Tomas Tatar, Jonathan Toews, and Paul Stastny as possible targets.

Paul Stastny Carolina Hurricanes

Mitchell points out that Holland is a meticulous and prudent general manager, who recognizes the significance of impactful solutions. He already demonstrated this when he successfully drafted Tatar for the Detroit Red Wings during his tenure. It is reasonable to assume that he holds a similar belief regarding the potential of Stastny and Toews.

The acquisition of valuable players through favorable deals is an obvious choice. In fact, for the Oilers, it’s probably the only choice. The team has little cap space to do anything else and unless they want to run with a short roster, they’ll need to convince veterans to sign for cheap and hope they have something left in the tank. Edmonton’s management has been proactive in exploring various free agent options to assess potential moves for the late summer and Mitchell believes that Holland will make headlines — either because he got something done or tried to — towards the end of the summer.

However, all plans are currently on hold until they secure the signings of McLeod and Bouchard. Mitchell notes, “After that, you could see a flurry of activity in Edmonton.”

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