With all the major shakeups occurring in Edmonton lately, could the best player in the world be dealt?
It happened to Wayne Gretzky, so it's not impossible.
Edmonton is in a state of influx
This is the fourth season for Edmonton Oilers' star player Connor McDavid and he has yet to even come close to raising Lord Stanley's Cup.
He was in attendance for the NHL All-Star Game this past weekend and was hounded about questions involving his team's erratic performance and all the front office changes.
"I'm not going to comment on that here. You know we're here for the All-Star game I want to enjoy as much as I can," said McDavid to reporters.
If he was rattled, it wasn't apparent. When he was asked about his relationship to the new interim general manager Keith Gretzky, McDavid replied, "My relationship with Mr. Keith Gretzky is, uh... (awkward pause) it's, it's, it's basic."
I mean, he's the captain of his team, what is supposed to say? He is like any other kid who grew up in Canada and wants to win a Stanley Cup. If there was any indication that he wants out of playing in Edmonton, it wasn't showing in his demeanor or responses.
Yet, none of us really know what has been going on in the Oiler locker room and what the team even thinks is going on in the front office.
Will there be trades? Will they ever make it to the Cup Finals... or even the playoffs this season?
Coming back down to Earth's atmosphere, the team is only three points out of a wild-card spot in the bunched up Western Conference. The Oilers still have 32 games remaining to right the ship... to give McDavid the opportunity to even qualify to the point of perhaps winning a championship.
So... here's the so-called fantasy trade
Lyle Richardson who writes for Sporting News, The Hockey News, and Bleacher Report has a crazy trade scenario where the Arizona Coyotes would send Clayton Keller and Jakob Chychrun to the Oilers for McDavid.
For starters, the salaries wouldn't even come close. McDavid makes $12.5 million, while Keller is still in the second year of this entry-level contract worth $885,833 and Chychrun just signed a six-year $27.6 million contract ($4.6M a year) which takes effect next season.
I somehow think that the Oilers wouldn't make that deal. For one, it is true that Keller is an up-and-coming star in the NHL, but McDavid already is and has been the entire time he's been in the league.
Secondly, Chychrun who is just 20-years-old has had two major knee surgeries in his young NHL career. It might be risky that the next time he gets hurt he may not recover as quickly as he has with the Coyotes.
The concept of McDavid in Arizona would well... put them on the map
While McDavid would undoubtedly bring any team to a new standard of excellence and performance, that doesn't mean the Oilers are going to give up on him.
BUT... (wait for it) just imagine if you can, what a Connor McDavid would do for the advancement of hockey in Arizona. For one thing, there would no longer be games where the Coyotes draw 13,000 fans a game.
THEY WOULD ALL BE SELLOUTS!
And, don't you think the new owner (whoever it is) wouldn't love to get a new arena and fill it up with screaming Coyotes' fans?
This franchise needs a shot in the arm which McDavid could supply on a nightly basis. It would be such a fervor to get tickets to a game that even the fans who come to the Detroit Red Wings or Chicago Blackhawks games (and cheer for their former team before relocating to Arizona) would be drowned out by the Coyotes' fans.
Wouldn't that be worth the price of a ticket... well besides the fact of seeing the best player on the planet work his magic on the ice?
What could the Coyotes offer for McDavid?
Realistically, the Oilers would more than likely love to get Keller, and could use a good quality, defensive-minded blueliner.
While Chychrun has youth and promise, a better choice would be Niklas Hjalmarsson (assuming rightfully that John Chayka will NOT give them Oliver Ekman-Larsson).
"Hammer" is 31 and knows how to block shots (averaging over two per game), and defense with the best of them. He leads the Coyotes with a +/- of +8. Chychrun is -10.
Now when you get down to salaries, Hjalmarsson has a two-year deal for the next two years worth $5 million a year.
Of, course if the Oilers give up the best forward in the league they will want some return to that part of the ice.
Again, going with youth, the Coyotes could also offer Christian Dvorak. While he's been injured and required surgery for a pectoral muscle issue, he is close to coming back ahead of schedule.
One veteran and one young player would have to get the Oilers' attention. Dvorak, 22, makes $4.45 million a year in a new six-year contract he inked which starts next season.
So, we're up to $9.45 million to match up to McDavid's mega contract. That leaves about $3 millon to get to the range needed to make the proposed deal to be approved by the league.
Let's see who could the Coyotes offer who is becoming an unrestricted free agent after this season and has a $2.8M cap hit?
While still young at 27-years-old, it has been mentioned that the team may not have much interest in re-signing him. He is a versatile, good puck possession player who contributes with 10 goals, 11 assists in 47 games this season. He has played on the power play as well as the penalty kill and the Oilers could use a player of his capabilities.
A trade made in heaven... but it's just a dream
While on paper this proposed trade would certainly help both teams, the Oilers may also be interested in a goalie prospect like Adin Hill. He had a stint of excellent play when he was called up from the AHL recently and we all know that Cam Talbot is just not doing the job in Edmonton, and he will be a UFA after this season.
So, to recap... four players for the BEST player in the NHL. GULP... it sounds like a lot, but a Connor McDavid only comes around once in a lifetime.
Too bad for the Arizona Coyotes that it's only a dream... or is it?
Let us know what you think of this dream trade for the Arizona Coyotes acquiring Connor McDavid. Is it just a dream?