Will the post-COVID cap crunch cost Ryan Nugent-Hopkins an extension with the Edmonton Oilers: 9 Things

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8. I do not expect that either of RFA’s Andreas Athanasiou or Matt Benning will receive qualifying offers from the Oilers. Their present salaries won’t fit beneath the flat cap considering where they would slot into the lineup. But this doesn’t necessarily mean that both or either player will walk. Each would still fit in the lineup at a different price point if they and their agents are willing.

7. What an ironic turn for Adam Cracknell. The former Oilers winger agreed to return from Europe (KHL) for a 2-way deal with Edmonton. But when COVID continued to hang around, the club loaned him right back to Esbjerg of the Danish league. He’ll return when either the NHL, AHL or both seasons resume. In the meantime, that’s a whole lot of frequent flyer points

6. In a pre-COVID world the Edmonton Oilers my have entertained submitting an offer sheet for Edmonton native Jake DeBrusk. The rugger, talented winger would surely fill a need up front on an Oilers club that is winger-challenged. But even if Edmonton had the cap space to be able to afford DeBrusk, they don’t have the compensation that would be demanded if Boston didn’t match.

5. The NHL Draft is just around the corner. As I have written in this space in the past, I think it is unlikely that the Oilers either trade the 1st Round pick or move down from #14. I expect they’ll stand pat at 14, confident that a really good player awaits. Maybe it’s Seth Jarvis. The 5’10, 170-pound forward is ranked anywhere from 10th to 29th, after a massive 2nd half of the WHL season during which he put up 63 points in his final 26 games. Smaller skill is more likely to drop in the draft than bigger bodies. But in the new NHL, smaller skill has a bigger place.

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