The Edmonton Oilers goalie dilemma continues as Mike Smith is injured yet again. Should they go after another goalie to help out? It seems to be headed that way as the team can score at will. They need an upgrade in the net to get to where they can compete for a Cup.
The Goalie Tandem Has Worked
With both Mikko Koskinen and Smith sharing the net until Smith’s untimely injury, things were going great. Koskinen has had a 8-1 record, with a .918 save percentage along with a good 2.59 goals-against-average. Then, Smith was expected to return, but that didn’t happen. So the Oilers called up Stuart Skinner who has had all of two NHL games. He lost his only outing to the surprising Detroit Red Wings 4-2.
Dave Tippett seems to like what he’s seen of Skinner, but will he be the answer to the Edmonton Oilers goalie dilemma?
According to sportsnet.ca: “The update on Mike Smith is he left to go back to Edmonton yesterday, had a setback in practice, so he’s gone back to get some further evaluation in Edmonton,” Dave Tippett said Thursday. “It’s a concern, for sure, because it looks like he takes some steps ahead and goes out and works a little bit, and then has taken another step back. So I think it’s certainly a concern. He went through the last couple of days and near the end of practice, he kind of tweaked something, so he decided to go back and I think they’re going to do some more imaging of it today and we’ll get a better read on it at home.”
Edmonton Oilers Possible Goalie Choices
There are at least three goalies the Oilers could pursue if they feel the need to do so. Let’s go over those choices now to see how that may happen.
Things haven’t gone too well since Marc-Andre Fleury‘s unexpected trade to the Chicago Blackhawks. His 2-7 record with a .892 save percentage and a 3.81 goals-against-average are very uncharacteristic for the Vezina Trophy winner of last season. Nevertheless, being able to trade for Fleury will take some doing. The Blackhawks would need to retain some salary and receive Koskinen in return. They also would want a draft pick to compensate them. That may not happen. Yet, Fleury could flourish in Edmonton.
Anton Khudobin still has $3.33 million owed him on his three-year deal. It’s good through next season. More than likely the Dallas Stars aren’t interested in taking Koskinen back since they have a good supply of goalies. However, other arrangements could be made to swing a deal. That would give the Oilers a goalie signed for a while. They would just need to determine how to make the salary cap work.
Joonas Korpisalo may be the best option here for the Oilers to solve their goalie dilemma. With the Columbus Blue Jackets tying up Elvis Merzlikins to a long-term deal, Korpisalo is expendable. He has a $2.8 million contract which expires after this season. He is only 27-years-old and can be a mainstay in the Oiler’s net.
The Edmonton Oilers have some options to fix their situation in net. If they intend to continue their great start, with Smith out, something needs to happen. Keep a close watch right here at Championship Sports Media for all the latest.
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