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"the young hockey addict"
Welcome to the next oilers dynasty • Canada • 21 Years Old • Male
I can't believe that MacTavish would be done for the summer on defense given that the Oilers have a surplus of NHL calibur defensemen with 10. With Schultz x2, Smid, Petry, Ference, Grebeshkov, Belov, Larsson, Klefbom and Potter they have too many 3/4/5/6 and no clear no. 1. And with them signing Nurse to a contract does that mean MacTavish expects him to play next year too?

I think the Oilers should trade Smid and N Schultz to make room for the new aquintances to give the Oilers 8 defensemen and make the pairings...

Ference - Schultz

Belov - Petry

Grebeshkov - Klefbom

Potter

AHL: Larsson

But this blogs about what would happen if the Oilers don't make anymore moves. So what would they do?

The only real players set in stone are J Schultz and Petry as the 1/2 on the right side. The rest is open season. Last year Kruger was running the Schutz's together on the 1st pairing but I don't think It'll be like that this year. Nick Schultz isn't good enough for 1st pairing minutes and Justin's starting to get out of his talent level. So if Nick Schultz isn't playing with Justin this year, who is?

There are 2 or 3 options I think for the other 1st pairing defense. Ference, Belov and maybe Smid. I don't think Smid will be with him because he doesn't have much offense and is a shut down defense. But then again maybe he'll play with Schultz for just that reason, Smid could make up for Schultz's lack of defense.

A lot of the people reading this proberly think I'm crazy fof thinking Belov could play on the 1st pairing, but he was sopposedly the best defense in the KHL. If he was the best defense in the KHL surely he can handle playing on the 1st pairing.

Ference is possible because he is a good all around defense without any major flaws, but the main reason he's a possibility to play with Schultz is because he has experience. He's been in the league for 10+ years and he's won a cup. He would be a great mentor for Justin as he develops.

My moneys on a Ference - Schultz pairing solely because of the experience and mentorship he'll bring. Npw who will be playing on the 2nd pairing with Petry? I would go with Belov because he and Petry are the same type of players and Belov can't be too bad if he was the best defense in the KHL. It's not that bad of a league.

Now we have the 3rd pairing. There are 6 NHL calibur defense left with 2 spots open. My money's on the 3rd pairing being Smid and Nick Schultz. They both have experience and would be a good shut down pairing since they're both defensive defensemen. Don't expect many points from this pairing though.

So now we have the 3 pairings but what do the Oilers do with the other 4 defense (Grebeshkov, Larsson, Potter, Klefbom)? I would guess that Larsson and Klefbom start the season in the AHL. Larsson has to refind his game after his bad season in Dallas last season and Klefbom is coming off a shoulder injury and hasn't played on a NA ice surface before. Let him get used to the small ice surface before throwing him into the NHL. But by the end of the year I expect he'll break the lineup and the Oilers will trade Nick Schultz or Smid at the deadline.

That leaves Grebeshkov and Potter as extras. Potter has always been an extra but Grebeshkov is too good to be in the press box. He's more of a 3/4/5 quality defenseman. He'll be traded at the deadline to a contender for a draft pick.

So this makes the lineup.......

Opening day:

Ference - J Schultz

Belov - Petry

N Schultz - Smid

ex. Grebeshkov, Potter

Trade deadline:

Ference - Schultz

Belov - Petry

Kelfbom - Smid

ex. Potter

I would still like to see MacTavish trade a couple of the 3/4 guys like Smid and N Schultz for a legit #1 or another young future #1 like Gardiner. But if MacTavish is done for the summer this is what I think the lines will be like. What do you think MacTavish will do?
Filed Under:   Oilers  
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