Updated: Oct 4, 2022
Additions: Jack Campbell, Mattias Janmark, Ryan Murray, Greg McKegg, Calvin Pickard
Subtractions: Duncan Keith, Zack Kassian, Mikko Koskinen, Kris Russell, Brendan Perlini, Colton Sceviour, Kyle Turris, William Lagesson, Derick Brassard, Josh Archibald
The clear upgrade needed in Edmonton this offseason was goaltending, and Campbell may be the answer if he can bounce back from a tough stretch last season and get back to his previous form. Seeing Keith retire was a blow, after the steadiness he brought to the backend last year. The Oilers will look to Murray and a combination of Brett Kulak and Slater Koekkoek to fill his shoes.
Probable For Opener: Darnell Nurse (Hip), Eyan Nugent-Hopkins (Shoulder), Jesse Puljujarvi (Shoulder), Kailer Yamamoto (Concussion), Calvin Pickard (Undisclosed)
Questionable For Opener: -None-
Out To Begin Season: -None-
Out For Season: Mike Smith (Undisclosed), Oscar Klefbom (Shoulder)
It's very possible we've seen the last of Smith and Klefbom for the rest of their careers, but that aside, the Oilers should be relatively healthy come the start of the season.
(league ranks in parentheses)
Evander Kane - Connor McDavid - Leon Draisaitl
Zach Hyman - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Kailer Yamamoto
Mattias Janmark - Ryan McLeod - Jesse Puljujarvi
Warren Foegele - Derek Ryan - Devin Shore
Darnell Nurse - Cody Ceci
Ryan Murray - Evan Bouchard
Brett Kulak - Tyson Barrie
McDavid and Draisaitl will see plenty of time apart from each other centering their own lines, but the the combination of the two plus Kane were so effective in the playoffs last season it's probably worth a look to keep them together to begin the season. Janmark adds much-needed depth to the forward group, and McLeod and Puljujarvi will be called upon at times to fill top-six roles.
The defense remains essentially intact - besides Keith - and Campbell brings certainty to the starter's role in net while Skinner gets his first real chance as the backup.
Playmakers: Connor McDavid | Leon Draisaitl
Volume Shooters: Connor McDavid | Zach Hyman | Evander Kane | Jesse Puljujarvi
Play-Drivers: Connor McDavid | Jesse Puljujarvi
Shutdown Defenders: -None-
Shot Blockers: Ryan Murray
Penalty Drawers: Connor McDavid
PP Specialists: Connor McDavid | Ryan Nugent-Hopkins | Tyson Barrie
PK Specialists: -None-
Faceoff Specialists: Connor McDavid | Leon Draisaitl | Derek Ryan
Studs: Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Evander Kane
Duds: Tyson Barrie
Sleepers: Zach Hyman
Other Roster Worthy: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Jack Campbell
McDavid and Draisaitl are sure-fire top-five picks in any redraft and best puck league, and Kane should be along for the ride at even-strength with his shoot-first mentality. Hyman is the sleeper here, as he's likely to get the net-front powerplay time along with McDavid, Draisaitl, and Nugent-Hopkins. Barrie was on that unit as well for the majority of last season, but loses nearly all of his fantasy value if Evan Bouchard takes his spot on the point as rumored.
2022-2023 PuckLuck Projections
PuckLuck Projection: 99 points
Floor: 82 points Ceiling: 109 points
Projection Data Confidence: 70%
(League Average: 70%)
Stanley Cup: +800
President's Trophy: +950
DraftKings Sportsbook Lines:
Stanley Cup: +1600
President's Trophy: +11000
Edmonton has a lot of hype this season, but they're essentially returning the same team as last year with hopes that Campbell is an improvement over Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen in net. On average, that is not likely enough to make the Oilers the division favorites as the sportsbook odds reflect. It's hard to bet against McDavid and Draisaitl, however, so if you think the supporting cast is good enough to make it their year it's hard to argue dropping a future or two.
Campbell's play will be the key to betting the Oilers on the daily. Overs seem to be the obvious choice, but if Campbell shows well, fading that and going with unders may provide the best value. The Oilers can also be potential upset candidates, as the betting public generally likes them as favorites and you may get some good value on their underdog opponents.
Division Projection: 5th
Conference Projection: 7th
League Projection: 14th
The Pacific Division may sneak five teams into the playoffs, as we project the fringe teams to be a little stronger than the Central. The Oilers should jockey for position anywhere in the top five of the division, so despite the low division rank their playoff chances are pretty solid.
Will they be able to make a deep playoff run? Well, that will fall on the shoulders of their superstars. On talent alone, they always have a chance. Edmonton's scoring rates have been enough to cover up some of their other holes, and there's no reason to believe that can't happen again.