Edmonton-Tampa Bay: Depth Trade Shaping Up?

Antony TaContributor INovember 8, 2009

PHILADELPHIA - NOVEMBER 02:  Jeff Carter #17 of the Philadelphia Flyers takes a faceoff against Jeff Halpern #11 of the Tampa Bay Lightning on November 2, 2009 at Wachovia Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

There's a rumour out there that the Oilers are scouting the Tampa Bay Lightning, that came to me by way of reading a post over at The Copper & Blue .

Barring suggestions of Olympic scouting (Stamkos?), there are a few interesting trade possibilities for the Oilers.

Many are suggesting the deal would be for Ryan Malone or Steve Downie , two players who would look great in Oilers uniforms.

I think it may be more of a depth move, however. Downie would fit in with Quinn's vision of using guys like Brule, Jacques and Stone as "crusty" line compliments, but he seems to be the kind of player that the Lightning need. Same thing with Malone, who is enjoying a great season so far.

In my estimation, any move with the lightning would be a setup move.


Firstly, the Oilers have no cap space to work with.

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Secondly, most of the Lightning impact players verge on untouchable status.

Thus, it is now that I bring your attention to other players of note on the Lightning roster in Jeff Halpern, Paul Ranger, and Antero Niittymaki.

The Case for Jeff Halpern

The Oilers need more veteran leadership on a very young team.

The Oilers need someone to win defensive zone faceoffs with Horcoff out.

The Oilers need a defensive specialist to compliment Fernando Pisani.

The Case for Paul Ranger

If Ranger becomes an Oiler, it means a) Souray's injury is worse than originally predicted, b) one of Gilbert or Grebeshkov are already part of another pending deal, c) one of Chorney or Staios are slated to leave town (Chorney would go to Springfield), or d) some combination of the above

Ranger comes cheap

The Case for Antero Niittymaki

If there is interest in the NHL for a guy like Josh Harding, then there might be a market for a guy like Jeff DesLaurier.

Niittymaki would essentially be a replacement for JDD if he were dealt away.

Niittymaki comes cheap.

The Lightning have Dustin Tokarski, Kari Ramo, Riku Helenius, Michael Zador...

Besides depth deals, I can't see a major name heading to Edmonton.

Not Lecavalier. Not Stamkos. Not St. Louis. Not Malone. These are all untouchables.

If these depth deals go down at all, as stated above, I believe they would be signs that other deals are also in the works.

Tambellini got a splendid return on Mathieu Garon (though we never resigned Dany Sabourin) and also on Erik Cole so let's give him a chance on the next trade before we judge his actions.

Tambellini's inaction in the face of glaring roster holes is frustrating now, yes.

But then imagine how much more frustrating the wrong action would be.

So it is thus that in Oil Country, the fans wait patiently for news.

Any news.


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