1. Wayne Gretzky
2. Mark Messier
3. Jari Kurri
4. Paul Coffey
5. Glen Anderson
6. Grant Fhur
7. Kevin Lowe
8. Craig Simpson
Maybe Esa Tikkanen or Charley Huddy fits in next. Or maybe not. But the last time any of those players laced up skates was in the NHL was 2004 and as an Oiler you have to go back to 97-98.
I submit a list of the 8 best Oilers (min. 300 games played as Oiler) that only includes players from 98-99 and beyond.
1. Doug Weight
2. Ryan Smyth
3. Ales Hemsky
4. Shawn Horcoff
5. Todd Marchant
6. Janne Niinimaa
7. Boris Mironov
8. Tommy Salo
Maybe you have Eric Brewer in there or realized "Hey, Kelly Buchberger's not there". Well maybe he should be.
That being said number's one and two on this list are gone. Number 3 could be on his way out this season and it saddens me as this second list more clearly represents what I know as the Edmonton Oilers. Of the Oilers on the first list I have dvd's and highlight clips, books and memorabilia, but see them live, I did not.
I did see every player on that 2nd list. And I'll be damned if Ales Hemsky did not bring me out of my seat more then any of them. In a word, "WOW".
I don't know if he still fits. I would love to see it work somehow but there is too much else going on for me to lay my biggest dreams here.
And so I give myself permission to dream about what Hemsky may yield in return at this years draft.
Possible Returns for Hemsky?:
- 4th Overall from New Jersey - Hemsky is out of the West. We would need to take back salary.
- Zach Parise from New Jersey - Doubt it but the Devils may be looking to unload him.
- 8th Overall from Columbus - I would want more in return. Probably the 37th Overall pick. Maybe even more because Columbus is in the West. Dorset? Also we would need to take salary in all likelihood.
- 9th Overall from Boston (from Toronto) - I would want more and would safely guess salary is coming back here too. Hemsky is out of the West.
- 12th Overall from Carolina - Would they be interested in Hemsky? The Hurricanes have the 42nd Overall pick too.
- 15th Overall from New York - Would Slats commit one of his famous overpays here? Dylan McIlrath or Derek Stepan involved perhaps? Take salary here too.
- Jeff Carter from Philadelphia - We would need to give more. I dunno if I'm on board. Dressing room issues and excessive partying are things we've seen here before.