With the 2019 NHL Trade Deadline starting to inch closer with each passing day, the Edmonton Oilers are amongst the many teams keeping busy on the phones while also keeping their options open with just over a week left to correct their roster woes.
It all started on Wednesday night when Jeff Marek of Sportsnet.ca reported on HockeyCentral on Sportsnet that a trade might be in play within the Oilers organization.
After a brief commercial break, Marek would go on to mention that the team would clear a roster spot in doing so, allowing veteran defensemen Andrej Sekera to make his long awaited return to the Edmonton formation.
Within just a matter of moments later, Paul Almeida of Azorcan.net mentioned that interim general manager Bob Nicholson was shown in conversation with Scott Howson and Keith Gretzky, an indication that perhaps their was more on this front to the speculated trade report.
Moving on now to Thursday morning, TSN Hockey Insider Darren Dreger reported that the Oilers were in conversation with the Philadelphia Flyers on Cam Talbot. While it was unknown what stage of discussion that the two sides were in at that time, Dreger added that their was reason to believe that the two teams were definitely talking.
In follow up to that, just a few minutes later, Dreger continued on in noting that a Talbot trade would be beneficial given that the veteran goaltender and Carter Hart have a good relationship that could work well together. Of course this was on the condition that progress was made on deal between both sides.
Moving onwards to Friday morning, Darren Dreger would be back with more, this time reporting that the teams were in a holding pattern with regards to a potential trade. He would also add on that Anthony Stolarz was the likely return if they managed to close the deal given he is a restricted free agent at the end of the year.
With all of this in mind yet nothing to show for it as a result, conversation between the two teams picked up again on Friday evening, allowing the final pieces to come together in order for the trade to be made official.
As Saturday morning came around, a club announcement was made by the Flyers which would add on that goaltender Anthony Stolarz would be the return piece in the deal. The Oilers then followed their footsteps as word started to spread that the deal was finalized.
According to Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic Toronto, Talbot had a 10-team YES list as part of his modified no-trade clause. He also mentions that the Flyers weren’t on it so Talbot had to waive his no-trade clause for the trade to materialize.
As noted by John Shannon of Sportsnet.ca, the agreement will allow for Sekera to return on Tuesday against the Coyotes while Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet.ca reports that Talbot will set an NHL record for the Flyers, using 8 goalies in one season once he plays and makes his first start.
As per Chris Johnston of Sportsnet.ca, this trade allows the Oilers to gain a pro-rated $3.4 million in cap space for the season’s remainder with Anthony Stolarz headed the other way as the exchange piece in the one-for-one deal.
In taking a look now at Talbot’s statistics for the 2018-2019 regular season, the 31-year-old native of Caledonia, Ontario has appeared in 31 games with the Oilers thus far, recording 10 wins and 15 losses, while also adding one shutout and three ties to his resume.
Talbot also owns a 3.36 Goals Against Average as well as a .893 save percentage through a total ice time that consists of 1, 695 minutes. As for the entirety of his NHL career as a whole, the Canadian netminder has appeared in a total of 284 games, recording 137 wins and 110 losses, while also adding 20 shutouts and 24 ties to his resume.
Talbot was originally signed by the New York Rangers as an undrafted free agent back in March of 2010 where he would stick until June of 2015 when he was acquired by Oilers for draft picks. Talbot, who’s contract is carrying a cap hit of $4.17 million, made his NHL debut at the beginning of the 2013-2014 regular season.
As noted by Jason Gregor of TSN Radio 1260 Edmonton, not only does this deal help Edmonton save on cap space, but it also brings a fourth goaltender to the mix for head coach Scott Gordon to call on.
Talbot now joins Carter Hart, Brian Elliott and Michal Neuvirth on the Philadelphia payroll with a combined cap hit of $9.36 million between the pipes.
In taking a look now at American goaltender Anthony Stolarz, TSN.ca mentions that the Oilers were very much attracted to the young netminder who has the potential to become a restricted free agent this off-season as opposed to an unrestricted one.
As for Anthony Stolarz now, in taking a look at his numbers for the 2018-2019 regular season, the 25-year-old native of Edison, New Jersey has appeared in 12 games with the Flyers thus far, recording 4 wins and 3 losses, while also adding one shutout and three ties to his resume.
Stolarz also owns a 3.33 Goals Against Average as well as a .902 save percentage through a total ice time that consists of 630 minutes. As for the entirety of his NHL career as a whole, the former London Knights member has appeared in a total of 19 games, recording six wins and four losses, while also adding two shutouts and four ties to his resume.
Stolarz was originally selected by the Philadelphia Flyers in the second round (45th overall) of the 2012 NHL Entry Draft. Since then, he has spent time playing in the Ontario Hockey League while most recently, he has spent the past three seasons with the AHL’s Lehigh Valley Phantoms before spending the last two split between the AHL, the ECHL as well as the NHL.
In taking a look at the status of Stolarz and the effect his acquisition can have on the Oilers, Frank Seravalli of TSN.ca notes that if Edmonton plays Stolarz for 30 minutes or more in 10 of their final 25 games, then they will avoid the possibility of him becoming a Group VI UFA this summer.
Stolarz, who made his NHL debut at the beginning of the 2016-2017 regular season, is currently on a one-year deal worth a total of US$761,250. The idea with this trade is that unless the Oilers lock him up before the regular season comes to an end, Mikko Koskinen will then take over as the team’s everyday starting goaltender beginning next season.
As noted by Chris Gordeyko of The Nation Network, Stolarz, who was protected in the 2017 Las Vegas expansion draft, has been described as big, athletic and great in the room as well. With this move, the Oilers will be freeing up a total of $3,405,417 in cap space.
In other news surrounding the team in the early hours of Saturday morning, Elliotte Friedman of Sportsnet.ca reported that the Oilers were back in business, this time, talking with the Vancouver Canucks with discussions including the name of veteran centreman Sam Gagner.
Just two minutes later, Friedman was back with more, reporting that Ryan Spooner was involved as well, meaning that the veteran centreman was likely be the the return piece headed further West.
John Shannon of Sportsnet.ca then confirmed and re-iterated the deal, adding on that general manager Jim Benning would be reuniting with a player he had back in Boston.
Friedman would then make mention of the fact that the New York Rangers are still retaining 22.5% of Spooner’s salary, therefore this deal makes it a near-wash in terms of salary.
This was then followed by club announcements from both respective teams to officially confirm the transaction, meanwhile, the Oilers added on to theirs that assistant general manager Keith Gretzky said that they’re hopeful Sam Gagner would be available on Saturday night against the New York Islanders at the Barclays Center.
John Shannon would then add on the fact that the Oilers were hopeful about Gagner’s return, noting that it would be beneficial to the club at both centre and wing positions. He also made mention of the fact that the salaries for both players are rather comparable, noting that the New York Rangers are still retaining just under a million of Ryan Spooner’s contract.
In taking a look at Gagner’s statistics for the 2018-2019 regular season thus far in, the 29-year-old native of London, Ontario has appeared in just seven games with the Canucks this season, scoring a single goal to go alongside 2 assists, making for a total of three points registered. He also adds on four penalty minutes and a -3 Plus/Minus rating as well.
As for the entirety of his NHL career as a whole, Gagner has appeared in a total of 777 games, scoring 153 goals to go alongside 283 assists, making for a total of 436 points registered. He also adds on 358 penalty minutes and a -112 Plus/Minus rating as well.
In a statement from Keith Gretzky with regards to the Canadian’s acquisition, he said, “We’ve liked Sam to be a part of our club. He can add experience in the locker room and we think he can help us on our power play.”
As for Ryan Spooner and his numbers up to this point, the 27-year-old native of Ottawa, Ontario has appeared in 41 games with the Oilers this season, scoring three goals to go alongside two assists, making for a total of five points registered. He also adds on 2 penalty minutes and a -11 Plus/Minus rating as well.
In taking a look at the entirety of his NHL career as a whole, Spooner has appeared in a total of 314 games, scoring 48 goals to go alongside 115 assists, making for a total of 163 points registered. He also adds on 63 penalty minutes and a -20 Plus/Minus rating as well.
According to The Canadian Press, Vancouver is the third NHL stop for Spooner this season, who has split his 2018-19 campaign between the New York Rangers, Edmonton Oilers as well as the American Hockey League’s Bakersfield Condors.
The Edmonton Oilers are back in action on Saturday night in Brooklyn as they take on the New York Islanders at the Barclays Center at 7:00pmET. The game can be seen on Sportsnet West and Sportsnet Pacific, meanwhile, it can be heard on CHED 630 AM.
Following that is the Vancouver Canucks as they pay a visit to the San Jose Sharks at the SAP Center at 10:00pmET. The game can be seen on Sportsnet Ontario, Sportsnet One, Sportsnet 360, CBC and Citytv, meanwhile, it can be heard on Sportsnet 650 Vancouver.
In relation to Philadelphia’s acquisition of veteran goaltender Cam Talbot on Saturday, the Flyers return to action on Sunday evening in Detroit as they pay a visit to the Red Wings at Little Caesars Arena at 6:00pmET. The game can be seen on NBCSN, meanwhile, it can be heard on 97.5 The Fanatic.