The Edmonton Oilers may have their eyes set on signing a few remaining free agents to professional tryouts.
With a need for additional depth on the right wing, Edmonton may want to consider signing Drew Stafford, a veteran winger who can bring plenty to the Oilers’ lineup.
In 68 games split between the Winnipeg Jets and Boston Bruins this past season, Stafford had eight goals and 21 points. While his numbers aren’t impressive, or that of a high-scoring winger, he has a lot of potential and attributes that could benefit the Oilers.
First off, the 6-foot-2, 214-pound winger plays a physical game and uses his size and skill to create scoring chances. He is able to drive up the ice and get into key scoring areas, as well as throw hits and backcheck effectively. A solid, strong skater, Stafford can push past his opponents and carry the puck up ice.
In addition, he is good at handling the puck and has a quick, underrated shot. Stafford is also able to get the puck in the greasier areas and can help contribute plenty of offence.
When it comes to the Oilers lineup, they need more right wing depth, and not necessarily proven scorers, but players who can come in and fit in well with the younger players. Additionally, they need a physical, fast winger who can keep up with the Oilers’ speedy, growing roster and work well with other players.
While Stafford doesn’t have proven scoring ability, nor has he stood out as a top-six elite scorer, he is similar to Patrick Maroon. He can keep up and add chemistry to any line and can get to the greasy areas and create more scoring chances, using his frame to his advantage.
Overall, the 31-year-old wouldn’t come at a hefty price and could be a solid signing that could work well in the Oilers favor. Edmonton needs more depth on the right side, and with Stafford, they can fill the voids on their roster for little risk.