By Tyler Leli @jetleli on May 11, 2014
The Edmonton Oilers had an absolutely brutal 2013-2014 season, as they finished at the bottom of the Western Conference with 67 points. Along the way, Edmonton ranked 24th in the NHL in goals scored and 30th in goals against, and their core of young players seemed to stop progressing. In order to turn things around next year, Edmonton will need to make massive changes, and these five players will surely not be coming back.
Jones has been a part of the Oilers for four seasons, but the winger seemed to lose steam during the 2013-2014 season. Over 52 games played, he compiled two goals, four assists, 40 penalty minutes and only averaged 9:50 on the ice per game. Not exactly a game-changing performance, and Edmonton will surely take advantage of Jones being an unrestricted free agent by letting him walk.
Belov had an uneventful rookie season with Edmonton, as he played in 57 games, but generally saw his playing time wane after the Olympic break. Belov seemingly noticed that Edmonton was less than enamored with his play, and as a result he signed a four year deal with SKA St. Petersburg of the KHL in April.
Fraser was only acquired by Edmonton midway through the 2013-2014 season, and there is little reason to believe he will be coming back for another season. The 27-year-old has virtually no offensive ability, and doesn't have the defensive acumen to be a top-six defenseman on a playoff team. With an expiring contract and Edmonton being loaded with young defenseman, it only makes sense that Fraser moves on.
A former number one pick, Yakupov has great goal-scoring ability, and general offensive instincts, but things simply haven't worked out in Edmonton. During the 2013-2014 season, Yakupov compiled only 22 points in 63 games, and was a healthy scratch on numerous occasions. The 20-year-old may have a long future in the NHL, but Edmonton will surely look for, and find, a suitor for his services on the trade market this summer.
After playing 14 of his 18 seasons in Edmonton, Smyth has already announced that he will be retiring. At 38 years of age, this makes complete sense, and allows the Oilers to move on from the aging icon and begin to revamp their roster with new talent.
December 24, 2014 by Shaun Lavery
The Calgary Flames have shown flashes of both brilliance and the ability to lose games. They are a young team with plenty to improve upon. Here are five things they need to work on for the New Year. Read More
December 23, 2014 by Shaun Lavery
The Calgary Flames had a rough go of things in December. After finally snapping an eight-game skid against the Kings, Calgary needs to carry that momentum into the new year. Read More
December 23, 2014 by Nick Villano
The New Jersey Devils' season has been derailed by having less than stellar lineups on the ice on a nightly basis. Read More
December 23, 2014 by Lissa Albert
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Alex Galchenyuk might have been slotted into the top-line center position as a result of a teammate's injury, but he should definitely be kept where he is. Read More
December 23, 2014 by Dominic Lancella
The New York Rangers are hot right now, but there's still plenty of room for improvement. Here are five Rangers who need to step it up in 2015. Read More
December 23, 2014 by PowerPlayCJ
As the Boston Bruins look for help to end their season-long funk, targeting T.J. Oshie of the St. Louis Blues wouldn't make sense for any party involved. Read More
Despite being the reigning Stanley Cup champions, the Los Angeles Kings still need more production from certain big-name players if they wish to repeat as champions. Read More
December 22, 2014 by Stephen Wyatt
The Carolina Hurricanes were moved from Hartford despite a loyal Whalers fanbase which the Hurricanes now lack. Read More
December 22, 2014 by Lissa Albert
The Montreal Canadiens have had quite an exciting season thus far. Here is an evaluation of head coach Michel Therrien. Read More
December 22, 2014 by Douglas Smith
The current bad stretch of games for the Tampa Bay Lightning can be attributed to a lack of consistency, and coach Jon Cooper needs to ask for a solution this Christmas. Read More
December 22, 2014 by tjostrander
The Boston Bruins are celebrating their trip to the Stanley Cup Finals 25 years ago this season. Here's a list of their best offensive forwards since that season. Read More