Free Agent Decisions During The Offseason For the Oilers

May 18, 2023  (11:12 PM)

The Edmonton Oilers have some difficult offseason decisions to make. And, they will have limited cap space with which to get the job done. They will have approximately $6 million to sign numerous free agents.

Who stays and who goes? That is the issue general manager Ken Holland, who is in his last contract year, is tasked to handle.
Retaining key unrestricted free agents such as Derek Ryan and Mattias Janmark who have played important roles in the Oilers' lineup, is paramount.
Ryan collected 13 goals, seven assists in 80 regular season contests. He pitched in one goal, two assists in 11 playoff games. He's a good possession player and had an excellent +/- stat of +11.
He is capable of making a nice pass when needed as illustrated here:
Janmark had good numbers with 10 goals, 15 assists in 66 games. He was injured and only played five postseason games where he added one assist. His previous season with Vegas, he had four goals, four assists in 16 playoff games, so you know there is potential there.
The restricted free agents include Ryan McLeod, Klim Kostin, and Evan Bouchard. Out of this group, the first guy to keep around has to be Bouchard. The key for Bouchard was the addition of Mattias Ekholm whom he partnered with on the blueline.
During a very successful regular season Bouchard had eight goals, 32 assists while participating in all 82 games. Then, he really took off in the playoffs when he tallied four goals, 13 assists in 12 games.
He is definitely coming into his own especially on the power play. He had two power play goals and 11 assists. It goes without saying that he is blossoming into a skilled NHL player.
His defense isn't bad either:
When it comes to Kostin, he is a good-sized (6'-3", 215 pounds) forward who hits people... never a bad thing for Edmonton. He totaled 157 hits in 57 regular season games and had 11 goals, 10 assists also. In the playoffs he tallied three goals, two assists in 12 games. Not bad.
McLeod had 11 goals, 10 assists in 57 regular season contests and added five assists in 12 postseason games. He is young at 23, but has some potential.
So, if you were GM Ken Holland, who would you retain? Good luck with that Mr. Holland.
19 MAI   |   494 ANSWERS
Free Agent Decisions During The Offseason For the Oilers

Who is the most important free agent to retain by the Oilers?

Evan Bouchard38277.3 %
Derek Ryan285.7 %
Klim Kostin6212.6 %
Mattias Janmark224.5 %
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