Well the Oilers made a bizarre move today by signing Darnell Nurse today to a 3 year entry level deal. Nurse is a few years away from the NHL so why would you sign him now?
A team doesn't have to sign one of their draftees until 2 years after they're drafted. Or pretty much when they're done Junior. The only reason a team would sign a player before the 2 years are up is if they think that they will make the big club. So this begs the question, why would Edmonton sign Nurse?
As Nurse is at least 2 years from the NHL why would the Oilers sign him now? There are 3 options.
1) MacTavish thinks he'll make the big club next year
2) MacTavish is making him play AHL instead of OHL
3) MacTavish signed him for the hell of it
Out of these 3 options, the 2nd doesn't make sense because he wasn't TOO good for the OHL, the 3rd doesn't make sense because MacTavish doesn't seem like the type of GM that does stuff for no reason. So that leaves option 1.
So if MacTavish thinks Nurse is NHL ready next year there is a few moves that need to occur. With Nurse there is now 11 NHL defense heading into 2013-14. Klefbom, Schultz x2, Petry, Smid, Ference, Belov, Grebeshkov, Larsson, Potter and Nurse. How will MacTavish fix this?
Most people expect that Smid and Nick Schultz will be gone by the start of the season so that leaves 9 defense. Larsson and Klefbom can start the season in the AHL so that leaves 7. Potter's the 7th so that leaves 6. Hey, maybe MacT's onto something...
So if this all happens what will the lines look like for 2013-14......
Ference - Schultz
Grebeshkov - Petry
Belov - Nurse
I don't know, I'm just spit balling here. Do you think that MacT signed Nurse to play this season?