I’m sure Teddy Purcell is loving his life right now. Living in the sunny state of Florida and playing in meaningful hockey games for the first time in 3 years must beat losing games in snowy Edmonton. He’s having success in Florida as well with 9 points in 13 games.
But at the end of the season it’s unlikely Florida won’t resign him (due to cap reasons) and Purcell will become a free agent. It begs the question: Could he return to the Edmonton Oilers?
I was reminded by this when I saw a simple instagram interaction between Teddy Purcell and Oilers d-man Darnell Nurse.
It’s a very insignificant interaction but it was a reminder that Teddy was a great presence in the room and had a solid relationship with many teammates. Although he took a lot of heat in Edmonton, he turned things around this season and is a good solution should Edmonton need a middle 6 winger.
This is how I see the Oilers forward group looking next year. If they opt to deal Nugent-Hopkins as well, it would create another hole on the wing and looking at the free agents available there isn’t too many available on the open market.
Enter Teddy Purcell. At this point in his career if a team with a shot at winning a cup comes knocking, I don’t imagine Edmonton is a very appealing option.
However that opportunity might not come, and he may not be left with very many options for staying in the NHL. It may be appealing for him to go back to a familiar situation in Edmonton, especially if they offer him a multi-year deal for around $2.5m.
DOES HE FIT?
I think Purcell would actually be a nice (re)addition to the Oilers forward group. If they lose Eberle and Yakupov they putting some finesse in their 3rd line isn’t a bad idea at all. He can also move up the line-up and he showed that this year with the success he had playing with Hall and Draisaitl.
He kept his CF% over 50% in Edmonton and brought up the CF%’s for Hall and Draisaitl by almost 5% as well. I know that stat isn’t the only thing that determines a good player, but it’s still a good indicator. Combine that with his 32 points in 60 games, and you get a good option for a supporting winger role.
This may not be a popular choice with fans of the Oilers, but he stepped up his play this year and on a short term deal, could bring some valuable traits to the table.
numbers via stats.hockeyanalysis