There has been much talk recently about the future of the Edmonton Oilers, as far as retaining their young core group of players moving forward. There are some players up for restricted free agency in the very near future, but also one that will hit the market as a UFA next summer.
That one is Ales Hemsky. There was plenty of talk about the Oilers moving Hemsky over the summer, and Craig MacTavish had even pointed Hemsky out individually, along with Shawn Horcoff, as a player that the Oilers could be looking to move.
In the end, Horcoff ended up with a new home, Hemsky did not. Does that mean that the veteran forward may have an opportunity to secure a spot with the Oilers for the future? Not necessarily, but it does open up the intrigue surrounding such a potential situation.
The fact that the Oilers have come right out and said that Hemsky is not on the trading block is intriguing on its own. Does that mean that they could be looking at a guy that will be around for the future? It’s a possibility, especially with a new regime. If he can prove his worth.
After a couple of years in which he was an offensive force, putting up 20 goals and around 70 points in three of four seasons, the last few years have been plagued by injury and inconsistency for Hemsky. The 2013 season saw him appear in 38 games, while posting a decent 20 points overall, including nine goals.
If the Oilers can get about 20 goals, and perhaps 30 or so assists from Hemsky out on the wing, then it’s certainly a possibility that they might look to keep him around. Of course, it depends on where the Oilers are around the trade deadline. If things look bleak, they could move him.
There is no clear answer regarding the status of Ales Hemsky as it is right now with the Edmonton Oilers. But with them removing him from the trade block, the possibility of him signing a new contract before next summer certainly exists, but it’s going to be on Hemsky to earn it.