3 Potential Suitors for Oilers Centre

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All people demands a Swiss Military knife appear playoff time, even if the blade is a little bit uninteresting on this 1.

Mark Letestu has been a jack of all trades through his a few seasons with the Edmonton Oilers, but that stint is probably coming to an conclusion at this month’s trade deadline. The workforce is basically out of the playoff race and Letestu’s versatility really should be in desire as a rental — a pending unrestricted totally free agent who could always circle back again to Edmonton in the offseason.

(Gary A. Vasquez-United states of america Today Sports activities)
With Patrick Maroon reportedly negotiating a agreement extension to continue to be in Edmonton, Mark Letestu could possibly be the Oilers’ only actual trade chip forward of the Feb. 26 deadline.

Letestu isn’t the sexiest title on the block, but he’s however pretty serviceable. The 33-calendar year-outdated pivot is 1 of individuals five-instrument gamers, capable of contributing on each unique groups, successful essential faceoffs and serving as a veteran chief. Fascinated groups, the playoff-sure buyers, would most probably want Letestu for his penalty-killing prowess, so it won’t matter substantially that he’s lost his contact as the triggerman on Edmonton’s top rated electric power-play unit.

Letestu’s offence has dried up, with only 1 issue in 19 video games considering that he final scored a target on Dec. 18. He’s sitting down at 8 objectives and 17 details by means of 53 video games — on tempo for 12 objectives and 26 details in 81 video games, having not long ago sat 1 out as a healthful scratch.

Of his 8 objectives, a few have appear on the electric power play and two were being shorthanded. Previous period, Letestu netted a profession-substantial 16 objectives, which include 11 on the electric power play and two shorthanded. He also had a profession-substantial 35 details above 78 video games.

It has been annoying occasions for the Oilers and Letestu but, inspite of this chilly streak, he really should however have first rate trade value. First rate as in a mid-round draft choose — quite possibly as substantial as a next, if a bidding war breaks out in between many groups — or a mediocre prospect, or it’s possible a comparable but more youthful roster player however underneath workforce command.

As for who could possibly be pursuing Letestu, a couple of his previous groups appear to brain among these a few potential suitors.

1) Pittsburgh Penguins

Letestu broke into the league in Pittsburgh’s business, participating in sections of a few seasons with the Penguins, which include a next-very best 14-target campaign in his 1st complete NHL period (2010-11).

The two-time defending Stanley Cup champions wouldn’t be attaining Letestu for his scoring, but relatively as a shutdown form to anchor their fourth line and get rid of penalties. Pittsburgh is in the marketplace for that type of part player, having nevertheless to replace Matt Cullen’s presence.

The Penguins have their next-round choose in 2018 but would choose to element with Vancouver’s fourth or Detroit’s fifth. Pittsburgh could also offer a lesser-recognized insignificant-leaguer, which include latest get in touch with-ups Jean-Sebastien Dea or Teddy Blueger. Adam Johnson and Thomas DiPauli could be other alternatives.

None of whom are really worth obtaining much too thrilled above from an Edmonton standpoint, but prospective clients like Daniel Sprong, Dominik Simon, Zach Aston-Reese and Jordy Bellerive possibly wouldn’t be readily available for Letestu. Perhaps Kasper Bjorkqvist or Jan Drozg, but they each have a extended way to go in turning into pros.

2) Columbus Blue Jackets

Letestu also put in 4 seasons with Columbus before coming to Edmonton. It’s a different regime there now, with Jarmo Kekalainen and John Tortorella in charge, but the Blue Jackets could glance into bringing Letestu back again for a next spin.

Columbus is lacking depth down the center and Letestu could solidify a fourth line that Tortorella trusts in having a common change. Letestu could be a superior in good shape with Matt Calvert and quite possibly Jussi Jokinen, who flanked Letestu briefly in Edmonton to start out this period.

(Aaron Doster-United states of america Today Sports activities)
The Oilers want a lot more substantial-conclusion skill in their ahead group and Sonny Milano would definitely enable, even if he isn’t the most defensively accountable player at this phase of his enhancement.

Sonny Milano and Lukas Sedlak could fascination the Oilers — a lot more so Milano for his offensive skill-set, but the Blue Jackets wouldn’t do that offer straight up. Milano has a lot more value than Letestu and Columbus could possibly ask Edmonton to include a defence prospect like Seth Jones’ brother, Caleb, but the Oilers possibly wouldn’t want Milano that bad.

Columbus has its personal next-, 3rd- and fourth-round picks to offer as properly as intriguing prospective clients like Paul Bittner, Calvin Thurkauf and Kale Howarth. Vitaly Abramov is probably off limitations and the Blue Jackets are seriously substantial on Alexandre Texier and Andrew Peeke much too.

3) Los Angeles Kings

Boston and Carolina were being also considered as achievable landing spots for Letestu, but Los Angeles seems to have a lot more of a urgent want.

The Kings will be obtaining Jeff Carter back again before playoffs, with Anze Kopitar and Adrian Kempe centering two other scoring strains. As of now, that would leave Torrey Mitchell, Nick Shore and Andy Andreoff as fourth-line alternatives. Not horrible, but Letestu would be an upgrade on all of them.

Edmonton and Los Angeles have currently produced 1 insignificant offer as division rivals this period, swapping Jokinen for Mike Cammalleri. Peter Chiarelli and Rob Blake could join again at the trade deadline, with Shore, Andreoff or Jonny Brodzinski as achievable returns for Letestu. Practically nothing unique there for the Oilers, but Shore and Brodzinski do have a little bit of offensive upside.

Jaret Anderson-Dolan

(Larry Brunt/Spokane Chiefs)
Jaret Anderson-Dolan, left, and Kailer Yamamoto continue to be a dynamic duo for the WHL’s Spokane Chiefs, but it would get a lot more than Mark Letestu to reunite them as potential Oilers.

Los Angeles has its personal next- and 3rd-round picks for 2018, plus two fourths and two sixths. Edmonton could possibly target Kailer Yamamoto’s junior teammate Jaret Anderson-Dolan or Lloydminster product Kale Clague, but the Oilers would have to include a little something considerable to get either of them. Actuality is, they could possibly not be readily available. Spencer Watson and Austin Wagner would be considerably less of a get to for Letestu.


Very well, what do you assume — which workforce is going to get Letestu? Pittsburgh, Columbus, Los Angeles or somebody else?





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