The Edmonton Oilers are open to trading Jesse Puljujarvi and the Arizona Coyotes could have enough to offer in a trade.
According to TSN’s Ryan Rishaug, the Oilers have had talks with Puljujarvi’s agent regarding his future – with the team open to moving the Finnish winger.
A stint in the AHL is also being considered to help the team’s first round (fourth overall) selection in the 2016 draft regain his confidence – having been so poorly managed and developed throughout his entry-level deal.
The Coyotes could do with adding some more, younger pieces on offence and a player of Puljujarvi’s potential could certainly be worth looking into.
The Oilers are regularly looking to upgrade their defence and the Coyotes could have an interesting player to offer in the form of Alex Goligoski.
Arizona will not want to part with players such as Jason Demers, Chychrun or Niklas Hjalmarsson, but Goligoski could be a guy that the organisation looks at moving if the opportunity to land Puljujarvi comes up.
Goli is a veteran blueliner with 773 regular season games under his belt and the 33-year-old is still playing at a high level in the desert.
The 2009 Stanley Cup champion puts his body on the line every game and plays a physical style that the Oilers would benefit from.
A second-round selection by the Pittsburgh Penguins in 2004, Goligoski has averaged 153 blocked shots over the past five seasons and is currently on pace for 162 this year.
Having Goligoski in the line-up would boost the Oilers’ current corps while having Puljujarvi would give the Coyotes a player to work with alongside a number of other young players already in their system.
A straight swap would not be possible, however, as the Oilers will undoubtedly want to recoup some extra assets and the Coyotes might need to retain some salary to help the deal get approved.
So what could a potential trade for Puljujarvi look like, in an ideal world?
In this deal, the Arizona Coyotes would receive Puljujarvi while the Oilers would get Goligoski, Chicago’s third-round pick this year and Pittsburgh’s sixth-round pick this year also.
The Coyotes would also retain at least $1.475 million of Goligoski’s cap hit, with his contract set to expire in 2021 – meaning the Oilers get the veteran blueliner for another two years beyond this season.
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This deal would let the Oilers part ways with a dark cloud that seems to be hanging around the organisation, while also getting a player that will have an immediate impact on their roster along with two picks in this year’s draft.
There are pros and cons for both teams in this deal, with the Coyotes giving up a selection of assets in exchange for a player that is still currently unproven at the NHL level and may actually end up not becoming the high-potential player that was expected when he was drafted.
For the Oilers, it would mean giving up on a player they selected fourth overall less than three years ago while taking on an older player that does not have as many years left in him than other defensive players on the Coyotes roster.
While it may still be unrealistic to expect the Oilers to give up on Puljujarvi in exchange for a veteran guy like Goligoski, especially now that Peter Chiarelli has left, it will be interesting to see what the organisation would consider acceptable.
The Arizona Coyotes would certainly manage Puljujarvi’s development carefully, likely seeing him start next season with the Tucson Roadrunners – one of the top performing teams in the AHL over the past two seasons.
Performing well in Tucson is a sure-fire way of moving up to the NHL team, with many players now taking that development path with the Coyotes organisation.
It is, unfortunately, unlikely that the Coyotes are involved in a trade for Puljujarvi, but it would certainly be nice to have a player of his potential brought in ahead of the trade deadline.
What do you think Coyotes fans? Could the deal presented be enough to land Puljujarvi? Or would the organisation need to part with more assets, despite his lack of production in the NHL? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!