Which Edmonton Oilers won’t be returning to the club next season?
On the heels of a highly successful 49-27 season and a +38 goal differential, the Edmonton Oilers found themselves knock out of playoff contention by the Colorado Avalanche just a few games away from their first Stanley Cup Finals since 2006.
Led by Leon Draisaitl and team captain Connor McDavid, this is an Oilers squad who is sitting pretty for the future and surely will not see another playoff drought anywhere in their immediate future.
Now, the club will need to make some tough decisions during the offseason to shore up their team if they hope to advance past the Conference Finals next season. With the financial situation in dangerous territory and the front office finding themselves pressed up tight against the salary cap, the Oilers are set to lose a good chunk of their current roster to free agency.
Who are the three likeliest Oilers to not be back?
#3 – Goaltender Mikko Koskinen
Mikko Koskinen signed a one-year, $2.5MM contract with the Oilers back in May of 2018 and played well enough to earn himself a three-year, $13.5MM extension in January of the following year.
Now here we are at the conclusion of the 2021-2022 season and Koskinen’s contract is expiring on the heels of one of his better seasons in the NHL. The 33-year-old posted a record of 27-12 with a .903 save-percentage, the second best mark of his career behind his 2019-2020 performance.
Oilers GM Ken Holland has been vocal in his efforts to upgrade the goaltending position in years past but has yet to make a significant move to do so. With Koskinen coming off of the books and current backup Stuart Skinner not ready for a full-time role, the team will likely move on from Koskinen and attempt to finally improve their goaltending situation.