The Edmonton Oilers have been a franchise blessed with some of the best players in the history of the NHL. Some of the luster was lost after Wayne Gretzky was dealt to the Los Angeles Kings, but the Oilers still managed to compete and welcomed in some very talented players.
The 1990s were a time when names like Mark Messier and Grant Fuhr transitioned to Doug Weight and Curtis Joseph. As the current edition of the Edmonton Oilers continues to struggle, we take a look at the five best Edmonton Oilers of the 1990s (in no particular order).
Curtis Joseph was the (and perhaps still is) the best goalie that the Edmonton Oilers have had since Grant Fuhr left the team.
When Joseph was traded for a first-round pick in 1995, the man known as “Cujo” became an instant fan favorite.
Joseph was the type of goaltender that could carry the team on his back, and had the propensity for big saves a crucial moments. It is safe to say that without Joseph in net, the Edmonton Oilers never would have upset their bitter playoff rivals, the Dallas Stars, in 1997, which was also the team's first playoff series victory in five years at the time.
The Oilers selected Jason Arnott with the seventh overall pick in the 1993 entry draft and had an immediate impact for the club.
Arnott posted an impressive 68 points in 78 games with the Oilers during his rookie season and was second to Martin Brodeur for the Calder Cup Memorial Trophy as rookie of the year.
Arnott spent five seasons in Edmonton and registered 238 points with the club, and though his offensive output was never as strong as his rookie season, he was a constant presence in the Oilers lineup.
Ryan Smyth has always been a fan favorite during his time with the Oilers.
Though Ryan Smyth is currently in his second stint with the Oilers, he was one of the team's most valuable players during the tumultuous 1990s.
While the Oilers went through financial difficulties and ownership changes, Smyth instantly became a fan favorite thanks to his speed and his propensity for doing whatever it took to contribute for the club.
Playing with guys like Doug Weight and Bill Guerin, Smyth helped to form one of the best top-lines in recent Oilers' memory.
Bill Guerin was such an offensive force for the Edmonton Oilers during his time with the club that it would be nearly impossible to keep him off of a list such as this.
Those missing some significant time during his tenure in Edmonton, Guerin still managed to register an impressive 161 points in 211 games for the Oilers.
He was the type of player who played with a certain brand of tenacity but also contained one-shot scoring ability that often changed the tide for the Oilers.
When the Oilers acquired a young Doug Weight from the New York Rangers for Esa Tikkanen in 1992-93, it had to be hard to imagine that they were getting the man who would become one of the best captains in franchise history.
Weight was a premier playmaker whose vision helped elevate the careers of both Ryan Smyth and Bill Guerin. During a very turbulent time in Edmonton, Weight was a consummate professional and a calming influence on the ice.
Though the Oilers had limited playoff success during his tenure, he led the Oilers to five consecutive playoff appearances before being traded due to financial limitations in Edmonton.