The Edmonton Oilers have a few needs ahead of this year’s NHL Trade Deadline but it’s not clear if they’ll actually be addressing any of them based on GM Ken Holland’s comments that he’s not keen on the idea of trading a top prospect or first-round pick to acquire what he needs. Most insiders realize the Oilers might need a better goaltender, another defenseman, and potentially some depth at forward with the loss of Jesse Puljujarvi for a month, but it’s the forward depth that Holland might be prioritizing, a move some might see as a bit of a head scratcher.
Puljujarvi will be back and the Oilers can really only afford to make one, maybe two moves, at best. Adding another winger might not be the ideal plan but the organization is being connected in trade talks about a winger out of Chicago anyway.
As per Eric Duhatschek of The Athletic, sitting at No. 28 in his Top 30 possible trade bets for this year’s deadline is Dominik Kubalik. The scribe has him as being linked to the Oilers.
Why Would Chicago Move Kubalik?
A pending RFA with arbitration rights, the Blackhawks are believed to be a team that will undergo massive changes this offseason. They could move a number of players this season and among the names mentioned have been Marc-Andre Fleury, Dylan Strome, Calvin de Haan, and even Patrick Kane (although that one feels like a bit of a stretch). Kubalik’s name has been out there in trade rumors and Duhatschek writes that Czech media has the Oilers interested.
Kubalik can score, but he’s struggling this season. He had 17 goals last season in just 56 games but he’s failed to maintain a pace anywhere close to his first two years nor gain any traction playing alongside Jonathan Toews — with who he had chemistry with a couple of seasons ago. He has 11 points at even strength (7 goals) and he’s played every game for the Blackhawks this year. He has one goal and one assist in the last 12 games and his lack of success is puzzling.