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Oilers Considering Adding in “3 Kinds of Areas” Says Insider

The Edmonton Oilers are looking at three specific areas when it comes to upgrading their roster this season.

As per a report by NHL insider and Sportsnet analyst Elliotte Friedman, during his latest 32 Thoughts podcast, he noted the Edmonton Oilers are considering adding in three kinds of areas. While he doesn’t know which is the priority or have a timeline on when the Oilers might want to pull the trigger on a deal, Friedman notes that general manager Ken Holland is “goalie, and Mike Smith’s health could determine that, left defense and third-line center.”

Related: Oilers Could Get Mike Smith Back for Tuesday’s Game vs. Maple Leafs

Friedman adds that when he thinks about what Edmonton is considering he said the team realizes this is the year the team is going to try and make the star players happy. They’re going to go for it this season but he’s just not sure what the timeline is to get these three things done.

Why the Oilers May Have Identified These as Needs

The injury situation on left defense has been well documented but the depth on the Oilers’ left side was already an issue heading into the season. There were questions about how well Duncan Keith could perform in a second-unit pairing and the third-pair wasn’t exactly a strength.

Ken Holland Oilers GM – photo by STN Video

As for the goaltending, there have been questions about the tandem of Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen since the two were pegged to return to the roster this season and the Oilers didn’t upgrade the position. Smith has gone down with an injury but could return Tuesday and Koskinen has been good but still has a tendency to let in at least one weak goal every game.

The center depth has been an issue for the Oilers for years with the team trying a number of different players in the position but unable to find someone that will stick or produce as hoped.

What Are the Oilers Willing to Give Up?

Jeff Marek said he believes that pretty much everything is in play to satisfy those needs. He specifically mentions the team’s first-round pick and high-end prospects, but Friedman said he’s not sure the high-end prospects are among the things Holland is willing to give up.

Friedman says the Oilers are unlikely to move a player like Philip Broberg and wouldn’t trade Evan Bouchard, but he does know that Holland did say that if Edmonton was in contention for the playoffs, he would be willing to move the team’s first-round pick.

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  1. Brian

    December 13, 2021 at 11:41 am

    They’ve needed these things ever since Holland arrived this is old news.

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