When news broke this past weekend that Edmonton Oilers defenseman Andrej Sekera injured himself during offseason training and would be out of the team’s lineup indefinitely, Oilers fans went into a frenzy of speculation as to what general manager Peter Chiarelli would do to fill the void left by Sekera’s absence.
In case you missed it, Sekera reportedly tore his Achilles tendon during training and required surgery to repair the damage. Again, he’s expected to be out long-term while he recovers.
The 32 year old defenseman missed most of the 2017-18 campaign due to injury, as well. He managed eight points in 32 games, following an offseason knee surgery. To say that this is setback for the Oilers is a giant understatement. Sekera is a smart, dependable defenseman whose capable of logging big minutes on the Oilers back end.
It’s possible that a young player like Darnell Nurse, Matt Benning, Ethan Bear or 2018 NHL Entry Draft first round pick Evan Bouchard could step up in Sekera’s absence, but Boston Bruins insider Joe Haggerty proposes another solution: Bruins blue liner Torey Krug.
In his latest column for NBC Sports Boston, Haggerty reports that the trade talks between the Oilers and Bruins that transpired earlier this offseason could pick up again with news of Sekera’s injury.
Check it out:
That [Sekera injury] leaves the Oilers badly in need of a left-shot, top-four D-man with some offensive upside and leaves open the kind of job description that Krug could very neatly fill in Edmonton. This is after some very clear interest from Edmonton in the talented, productive Krug last season. It would bring about a reunion of the offensive D-man with the general manager who originally signed him with the Bruins as an undrafted defenseman out of Michigan State.
As has often been stated, the Bruins don’t want to trade Krug, 27, after he produced 110 points the past two seasons with only Erik Karlsson, Brent Burns, Victor Hedman and John Klingberg scoring more from the back end in that span. Still, they badly need a top-six sniper to even off their forward lines and bring some scoring depth to a team that was far too one-dimensional in the postseason against the Maple Leafs and the Lightning.
Certainly Krug would be an intriguing option for the Oilers, but what would the Bruins want in return and are the Oilers willing to part with significant assets to acquire Krug?
Could a strong trade package featuring Krug be enough to pry Ryan Nugent-Hopkins away from the Oilers after he showed some great things on the wing last season? Could he also be a top-six center candidate with Patrice Bergeron and David Krejci entering NHL middle age? Could Edmonton’s desperation to turn things around be enough to really push Peter Chiarelli into desperation mode looking for a left-handed defenseman in light of Sekera’s injury?
Yikes… as frustrating a player as Ryan Nugent-Hopkins can be, he’s still a very valuable part of the Oilers’ offence. I can’t imagine that Chiarelli would be too pleased to part with Nugent-Hopkins, regardless of the return. Then again… this is the same man who essentially gave away Hart Trophy winner Taylor Hall for Adam Larsson, a borderline top 4 defenseman…
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice… shame on Chia.