Sheahan, Ennis are UFA’s on the hot seat as Edmonton Oilers seek to upgrade roster

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Conclusion: Fold. The Oilers will still have to fill the role, be it Jujhar Khaira and/or Gaetan Haas internally or a new recruit. There will be a large pool of free agents, perhaps stocked with extra RFA’s this year as many clubs look to cut salary. Possible the Oil might circle back to Sheahan later in the process but the better solutions lie elsewhere.

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David Staples on Tyler Ennis

Is his contract OK? He earned $800,000 last year and $650,000 the year before, so it’s not like it will take many millions to keep this 30-year-old playing. His career gross earnings are $30 million, which even after taxes, agent’s fees and escrow amounts to a splendid stack of cash. If he’ll come back for the league minimum that might work for the Oilers, though the market will be full of good players looking for work.

How was he in the playoffs? He was no RNH on a line with Draisaitl and Yamamoto, but he was OK. Then he got hurt and the Oilers looked a whole lot worse with Athanasiou in his spot.

How was he the last few years? The man can make a play and he’s put up numbers that should put him in the argument for playing on the second line of an NHL team. In the last two years his even strength scoring has been 1.85 per 60, which is about the same level of scoring as players like Oskar Sundqvist, Tyler Bozak, Anze Kopitar, Phil Kessel, Derek Ryan, and Zack Kassian.

Where does he fit in the line-up this year? Wherever you need a spark. Ennis showed he can make plays on Connor McDavid or Leon Draisaitl’s wing, but it could be his checking is strong enough to use him regularly in a third line role, with the Cult’s Kurt Leavins mentioning a possible third line of Ennis, fellow UFA Mikko Koivu and Jesse Puljujarvi.

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