The Edmonton Oilers were in the hunt for a right-handed, puck-moving defenseman, and were reportedly in on plenty of names: P.K. Subban, Kevin Shattenkirk, Jacob Trouba, etc. However, they eventually stopped spinning the wheel and decided to land on and settle with New Jersey Devils defenseman Adam Larsson, a big right-handed shutdown blueliner.
Greg Wyshynski of Puck Daddy on Yahoo! Sports cited Jeremy Rutherford of the St. Louis Dispatch, who had a run-down of the entire situation that happened with Shattenkirk, who has a year remaining on his contract and is still with the Blues after weeks of trade speculation.
“On the situation with Edmonton, I don’t believe Shattenkirk would have signed there long-term and that likely prevented a deal. However, I don’t think this is all on Shattenkirk. I think Edmonton might have wanted more in return for Taylor Hall than Shattenkirk. Perhaps the Oilers would have taken Shattenkikr without a long-term deal and that’s why they were asking for more than him alone. But I believe what ended any chance of swapping Shattenkirk and Hall was the Blues’ unwillingness to give up any more. As far as Eberle, etc., Edmonton got their D-Man and now they’re down a forward, so I’m not sure if they’re looking to trade Eberle or RNH at this point.” – Jeremy Rutherford
This is an interesting way to look at it. The first reason that a Shattenkirk trade to Edmonton seemed impossible was solely because of his desire to sign with an Eastern Conference team. That, and the fact that Shattenkirk would not re-sign with the Oilers after that one season, making a trade for so much pointless.
Which would have been even more interesting, given the way the Oilers look now with Milan Lucic and Connor McDavid on the front lines. Wyshynski also pointed out that perhaps Shattenkirk wasn’t pulled in like Lucic was with the gift of skating alongside McDavid.
He pointed this out as “McDavid fever,” and unfortunately, it did not get Shattenkirk. However, looking at this, I think that Larsson is the better pick-up for Edmonton. He takes care of the puck and is a young defenseman still developing and capable of taking on big minutes. Shattenkirk is a number-four defender in St. Louis and though he produces a lot of points and quarterbacks a power-play, he can struggle defensively and lacks size (he is only 5-foot-11).
Larsson has the potential to learn more about offensive contribution working alongside country mate Oscar Klefbom and getting minutes on the man advantage. He’s also 6-foot-3 and plays a shut-down game, something that the Oilers desperately need.