Top Free-Agent Forwards Oilers Need to Consider

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Nathan Horton – Right Wing

2013 club – Boston Bruins

2013 Salary : USD $4,000,000

Height: 6’2″

Weight : 229 lbs

Age: 28

Stats: 43 GP, 13-9-22,  +1,  16:51 TOI

Horton is a bit of a long shot here but certainly worth putting on the list for obvious reasons.  He plays on the top line in Boston, plays typical Bruins hockey (rough and tough) and puts up top-six forward numbers. He’s been consistently a 20-goal scorer throughout his career in both Florida and Boston but did so when healthy.  There’s the kicker – when he’s healthy.

The injury bug is most definitely a concern with Horton but if he can prove he can stay healthy he could be one the top free-agents on the market this summer.  Size, speed, grit, glamor and a flare for the dramatic, Horton brings it all and is only 28-years old, meaning he’d fit right in with this young Oilers group.

Still considered to be young at just 28, Horton also brings a wealth of playoff experience.  Aside from another deep run in the playoffs that are currently ongoing, Horton was a part of the Bruins Stanley Cup winning team in 2011 that saw him earn his first ring.  And he’s proven he can play on the biggest stage with 36 points in 41 career playoff games.

But again he’s a long shot for the Oilers given the Bruins are likely to make every effort to re-sign him and his lofty salary.  Currently making $4 million per season, Horton will surely seek a raise that if the Bruins don’t pay, another team will.  Anything in that range of $5 million per year gets dicey with the Oilers unless they can clear both Hemsky’s and Horcoff’s salary which, when combined would save them over $10 million annually.  Then again, if they can possibly sign David Clarkson, it could come down to choosing between him and Horton.  It’s a long shot, but dare to dream Arnold.

Oil on Whyte projected salary: 4-years, $22 million


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