The Edmonton Oilers have agreed to terms with RFA defensman Theo Peckham on a one-year deal worth $1.075 million.
Peckham, 24, is coming off an injury-filled season that saw him appear in just 54 games. He was plagued by concussion issues throughout the second half of the season, playing in just nine contests after the All-Star break.
It was an unfortunate turn after posting career numbers in 2010-11. Peckham appeared in a career-high 71 games that year while recording 3G-10A-13PTS, decent offensive production from a guy that fought 10 times and racked up nearly 200 penalty minutes.
The 6-foot-2, 235-pound rearguard is a physical presence, but it’s hard to see exactly where he fits on a crowded Edmonton blueline.
The Oilers already have Ryan Whitney, Nick Schultz, Ladislav Smid, Andy Sutton, Jeff Petry and newly acquired Justin Schultz in the mix, leaving Peckham to duke it out with Colten Teubert and Corey Potter for (presumably) bottom-pairing minutes.
Here’s what Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal wrote back in June:
Frankly, the Oilers have too many defencemen now. There’s eight NHL types, if you include Theo Peckham, who gives the Oilers some sandpaper but clearly fell out of favour with the coaches late last year. Sure, he had a concussion, but he was healthy over the last few weeks and they didn’t play him. They qualified the restricted free-agent, but I’d say he’s only 50-50 to be on the roster in September, even if he averaged 17 minutes a game last season in 54 games.
One thing that should aid in Peckham’s favor? Highly touted defensive prospect Oscar Klefbom, taken 19th overall in 2011, will play with Farjestads in the Swedish Elite League this season.