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Edmonton Oilers Matt Doumba Eric Carlson Juraj Slavkowski

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The Oilers are looking for help with the blue streaks, the Sharks have news from the teams about Erik Carlson, and the Habs have to make decisions about developing their young players. Gino Reda and TSN Hockey Insiders discuss these and other insider trading insights.


Pierre, you’re usually the guy who says “pump the brakes” when it comes to pushing for a change, but is it fair to say the Ueters can’t wait any longer?

mosques: I don’t think Ken Holland is prepared to panic, but our understanding of the situation is that Ken Holland has been on the phone a little later than usual and is thoroughly investigating what’s going on in the defense trade. So yeah, we get it he spoke to Arizona [Jakob] Chychrun, in Montreal in Joel Edmondson. Think of a team [that] Maybe a trade market defensive guy and the Edmonton Oilers are trying to fully investigate what that means and what the price is — prices are way too high. I think Ken Holland is ready to be patient, he doesn’t want to panic. The other thing is that there is no one-size-fits-all deal in Edmonton. I think the internal message is: ‘We have to play better’. There is no question heard.

Drager: When I think of a team that might have a defenseman available, I think of Matt Dumba and the Minnesota Wild. There is no doubt that members of the Edmonton Oilers and Ottawa Senators have reached out to them with an interest in Dumba. Why not? The 28-year-old is a vigilante defenseman and is a suspended free agent with no strings attached. The problem, from Wilde’s point of view, is that they need him. They are playing well now. They’re not sure yet that they’re ready to leave Matt Dumba even if you look ahead and see the cap issue with the Minnesota Wild…but the price will be high and then the Wild has to happen in the market by potentially finding someone to replace Matt Dumba.

What about Eric Carlson? From that incredible start, we originally thought four more seasons at $11.5 million would make for a pretty tough deal, but have we gotten anywhere close?

mosques: Here’s what’s interesting – in November at the GM meetings, Mike Greer – GM Sharks – came out and we asked him about Eric Carlson and his future and Mike Greer basically declared at that time “we’re going to listen” on Eric Carlson. Then our question was will anyone call under this contract? Well, Carlson continued to enjoy a hot season and what happened next – we can confirm that the teams have engaged with the San Jose Sharks about what the trade might look like. I still think he’ll probably have to wait until the end of the season, if at all. Carlsson has a case that doesn’t budge… But the highlight here is that the teams called and spoke to San Jose about Eric Carlsson.

When the Kraken brought Shane Wright back to the junior level, it sparked a new debate about what the Canadiens should do with Juraj Slafkovsky — especially since they could send him to the AHL if they wanted. Is there any news?

Drager: Alongside the Montreal Canadiens, he is still committed to strong development with Juraj Slavkovsky and some of their young players, and the hard truth is that the Montreal Canadiens are not playing hockey very well right now. They are the last in their division. They’re trying to turn things around to better assess where Slavkowski and some of these other players are. They will probably send Slavkowski and some other young talent to Laval, but Kent Hughes will not make a quick decision because his team is not playing well right now.

Despite the brutal season the Vancouver Canucks had, one of the biggest bright spots was the signing of free agent Andriy Kuzmenko — and the Canucks’ now-signature situation is a curious one. Are they about to do anything with him?

mosques: No contract negotiations have taken place, although that is expected within the month here, but what is interesting of course is that the teams are connected to each other. Why don’t they? He has a cover. The teams chasing him, which are competitors, don’t have a lot of space – he’ll do in terms of what he can do offensively and the fact that he doesn’t take up a lot of space. But right now, the Canucks aren’t sure they want to trade him. They want to try and see if they can sign him. I think the starting price is at least $6 million a year for a transfer deal to keep Kozmenko in Vancouver, where he’s very happy.

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