The Oilers might be taking a very major risk within the next 2 days

Published October 6, 2023 at 11:49

NHL teams have always dreaded placing players on waivers, especially if they were once highly sought after. This reluctance stems from the fact that NHL rosters can only accommodate 50 contracts and 23 active players. Consequently, there are instances where players don't cut, despite the team's desire to keep them.

Teams must make room for players who are performing well and instill confidence in the general managers to justify their spot on the roster. There is always a risk involved when a player is placed on waivers, as another team has the right to claim them, potentially resulting in the loss of the player without any compensation.


The Edmonton Oilers currently find themselves in a challenging situation as they must decide on centerman Raphael Lavoie. Despite being considered a rookie, Lavoie lacks waiver protection due to his age of 23. He was drafted in the second round, 38th overall, in the 2019 entry draft.

In the previous season with the Bakersfield Condors, Lavoie played 61 games, scoring 25 goals and recording 20 assists, accumulating 45 points and a +10 rating. He also incurred 47 penalty minutes.

Typically, a player with such a performance would secure a spot on the roster, but for some reason, the team believes he isn't quite ready. With the roster essentially set, the Oilers will have to take a chance by attempting to pass him through waivers. If he doesn't clear waivers, it will be a tough sell to the fan base for General Manager Ken Holland, as Lavoie appears to be a valuable asset for the team.

Lavoie's current contract has one year remaining, with a total salary of $874,125. In my opinion, it's almost certain that another team would take a chance on him, especially at that cap hit.

He might be worth offering to other teams in exchange for assets if Oilers management believes he cannot currently contribute to the team. This would prevent the risk of losing him for nothing.

Only time will tell, but the Oilers face a challenging decision ahead.
October 6   |   90 answers
The Oilers might be taking a very major risk within the next 2 days

Should the Oilers gamble by putting Raphael Lavoie on waivers?

Yes2426.7 %
No5561.1 %
Trade him first.1112.2 %
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