Hectic was the word Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan used to describe the last few weeks that saw big changes to the team roster.
“I think when you fail to reach your goal, and we did that last year, then changes have to be made and there’s a number of different avenues that happens,” he said.
The 2016 NHL Draft saw the Oilers come away with nine new prospects, one of them being their fourth overall pick, Jesse Puljujarvi. Less than a week later, Oilers General Manager Peter Chiarelli announced they had acquired right-shooting defenceman Adam Larsson from the New Jersey Devils, in exchange for Taylor Hall.
Finally, on the commencement of the NHL’s Free Agency Day, the Oilers hooked highly coveted free agent Milan Lucic and have signed three more free agents since then.
“We were lucky enough to get Milan and his family to join ours in Edmonton,” said McLellan. “
“We wouldn’t have gone through what we did to acquire him. I know that his thoughts are identical to ours, so that’s a good marriage right off the bat. I probably don’t have to explain to the fans very much about what his assets are: his size, his strength, his skill-set, his ability to score goals while providing that physicality and toughness. He’s also been in some really good winning environments. We think those are the intangibles that he can bring. Leadership and accountability to the locker room.”
“Losing Taylor in the trade, we knew we had to replace some of that ruggedness and that care-free play, if you will, and Milan does that as well, so, really happy about getting him.”