Fueled by unequal parts injury, suboptimal performance, and salary cap concerns as the team is set to enter the $100 million Connor McDavid era, the Oilers appear poised yet again to try and trade their way out of this tailspin. This time, as Sportsnet’s Elliotte Friedman reports, it’s Oscar Klefbom’s turn to flap in the trade winds.

Meanwhile, back in the East, the New York Rangers—similarly disappointed with their lot but heading in the right direction—might have a solution to Peter Chiarelli’s problem. Though they’ve just begun the arduous process of rebuilding their club, it’d be awfully difficult for Jeff Gorton to pass up on an opportunity to potentially join the growing list of NHL general managers who’ve fleeced Chiarelli in the recent past.

The logic as to why the two clubs would deal with each other at this junction is rather simple. The Rangers, now without Ryan McDonagh, could really use a shot in the arm on their blueline. Conversely, the Oilers could use a speedy winger capable of keeping pace with McDavid. You can probably see where this is headed already. Chris Kreider for Oscar Klefbom, anyone?

To win the deal, perhaps Gorton, who has repeatedly referenced a desire to “rebuild on the fly” in New York, could not only pick up Klefbom but additional assets to boot. Kailer Yamamoto, the Oilers’ first-round pick (22nd overall) from 2017, or Jesse Puljujärvi, selected fourth overall in 2016, are probably both a bridge too far, but perhaps one of the Oilers’ second tier prospects such as Tyler Benson, Ostap Safin, and/or Dmitri Samorukov could tilt the scales in the Blueshirts’ favor? Even if Gorton needed to send a defenseman back to Edmonton in the deal, he has a plethora of lower-end options including Neal Pionk and John Gilmour to pick from that shouldn’t significantly harm his club’s coffers.


The only thing I can ask is that you sheath your knives—at least temporarily—and read this for the full context. It makes more sense than you might think.