F (OT)

Oilers looking to make changes with fan-favourite players

Published June 1, 2023 at 7:08 PM

In breaking news from the Athletic's Daniel Nugent-Bowman, the Oilers have tipped a few of their expected offseason changes, including potentially moving on from a pair of fan favourite players.

Nugent-Bowman reports that the Oilers could look to move on from forward Kailer Yamamoto this offseason. The 24 year old forward was drafted by the club in the first round of the 2017 class, and has since shown offensive promise at the NHL level, but hasn't been able to provide the value of his contract with only 25 points on a $3.2M salary.

In addition to parting ways with the fan favourite Yamamoto, the Oilers could face a tough situation with their young emerging star defenceman, Evan Bouchard.

According to Nugent-Bowman, Bouchard is unlikely to sign a contract for longer than two years, which would walk him towards free agency. This may work in the Oilers' favour in the short term, keeping Bouchard's salary lower, but will face the consequences of either letting him walk in free agency or paying a large sum to retain him at that time.

As every other team does when knocking on the door of a Stanley Cup Final berth, the Oilers seem intent on relentlessly assessing and improving their team, even if it sacrifices a fan favourite in Yamamoto, or the long term control of Evan Bouchard.
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