Edmonton Oilers need to make a play for blue-liner Chris Tanev

The Edmonton Oilers are listed as one of the prime trade destinations for Chris Tanev, and it's imperative they make a move for the top-four defenceman.
Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks
Calgary Flames v Chicago Blackhawks / Jamie Sabau/GettyImages

With just under two months remaining until the Mar. 8 trade deadline, the intensity and number of rumors is unsurprisingly trending upwards. This of course includes the Edmonton Oilers, who could use a goalie and a top-six forward.

However, another position the Oilers could do with strengthening is their top-four blue line. In fact, to the point that some would argue this is their most pressing concern.

Regardless of if you agree with this take or not, it doesn't change the reality Kris Knoblauch's team need to find a quality defenceman to improve the team. One such potential candidate, is the Calgary Flames' Chris Tanev.

In fact, Matt Larkin of Daily Faceoff has the Oilers listed as one of seven possible destinations for Tanev. The question is, how feasible is such a union?

Tanev to the Oilers?

One thing helping the Oilers -- and any team interested in the Flames' alternate captain -- is that he is set to become an unrestricted free agent after this season. Combine this with him being 34, and the Flames could be of the mindset of wanting to get something in return for him before it's too late.

This can be countered by the understandable question of why the Flames would want to get rid of one of the best blue-liners in the game today? Especially with the team being just two points out of a playoff spot at the time of posting.

In this respect, in really does depend on how genuine the Flames think their chances are of qualifying for the playoffs, and even then, if they are confident of making a genuine run at the Stanley Cup. Regardless, it's up to the Oilers to at least make them consider trading Tanev.

After all, we're talking about a quality, shutdown defenceman, who would undoubtedly boost the Oilers top four and team in general. Think last season, when they traded for Mattias Ekholm.

The financial implications

Of course, any deal is made more complicated by the Oilers' precarious salary cap situation. At the time of posting, as per Cap Friendly, they are projected to have $920,722 of cap space at the deadline.

This makes adding Tanev's cap hit of $4.5 million a tall task, so who can the Oilers realistically offer in return, to at least help towards cancelling this out? One possibility is Codi Ceci, who has a cap hit of $3.25 million.

This way, the Flames get a cheaper and young player, who is also a top-four defenceman, while the Oilers upgrade at the position. However, we appreciate even this will likely not be enough to ensure a deal.

As such, similar to what the Oilers did last season when acquiring Ekholm, they can also offer a first round draft pick. Yes Tanev could be gone after this season, but the Oilers are in a win-now mode, particularly GM Ken Holland, who is likely on his final chance to win a Stanley Cup in Edmonton.

There has been speculation about Philip Broberg being moved to facilitate a trade to improve the team. However, despite him being labelled a draft bust in some quarters, it would be a major gamble to part company with a prospect still more than capable of becoming a top-pairing blue-liner.

Instead, Ceci -- who is older than Broberg -- and a first rounder, is an offer worth making. Whether or not the Oilers would need to throw in more to entice the Flames is debatable, but the latter have to be careful not to push their luck too much, or they could risk losing Tanev for nothing at the end of this season.

Next. It's just not worth trying to trade Jack Campbell. It's just not worth trying to trade Jack Campbell. dark

One X factor which should be noted, is that the East York, Ontario native does have a 10-team no trade list. Throw in the fact he would be moving to the Flames' Alberta rivals, and this could conceivably be what scuppers a trade, even if the two teams do agree to a deal.

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