We’re still in the “interview/conversation” period before free agency begins, so Milan Lucic and the Edmonton Oilers would be very unlikely to back up the heavy rumors that they’ve got a deal done.
Such talk is all over the place on Tuesday, though.
Sportsnet’s Gene Principe reported that the two sides were somewhere between 95 and 100 percent certain to reach a deal once July 1 rolls around, according to his sources.
The Edmonton Journal’s Curtis Stock notes the same, crediting a “good source.”
As the Edmonton Journal notes, the Oilers are high on Lucic’s list of landing spots.
Oilers insider Bob Stauffer has said the Oilers are #2 on Lucic’s list of likely destinations, after the Anaheim Ducks. Stauffer added he thought it was more likely the Oilers would trade for a right shot d-man than sign Demers.
TSN’s Bob McKenzie said earlier today on Vancouver radio that Lucic might be willing to give the Oilers a “hometown discount” because Lucic is keen to play with Connor McDavid in the new arena.
That’s a lot of smoke, yet Lucic showed some fire in downplaying the rumors.
Some wonder if Lucic’s denial mainly comes down to this being a time when it’s a little fuzzy as far as how specific you can get regarding the parameters of a deal.
One thing seems indisputable: there are plenty of teams who covet the power forward.
Lucic can bring some size and snarl to the Oilers’ finesse-heavy forwards group, yet there’s no denying that Edmonton’s bigger area of need is defense.
The Edmonton Journal’s Stock also reports that they’re eyeing Jason Demers in that regard:
This is a situation heavy in “if” statements, but one divisive “if” revolves around the belief that signing Lucic would prompt a Taylor Hall trade.
Again, don’t expect anything official until Friday.
Once the free agent frenzy rolls around, we might see some real fireworks from Edmonton.
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