Drastic changes in negotiations with Tyson Barrie and Adam Larsson.

An unexpected twist.


The Edmonton Oilers have a lot of balls up in the air this offseason and it has been very difficult to try and get a grasp on which way general manager Ken Holland will lean. One of the few things that seemed certain however was that both veteran defenseman Adam Larsson and the Oilers were interested in extending their relationship before he hit the open market, and by extension there was an expectation that veteran defenseman Tyson Barrie would be hitting that open market and moving on.

Now however it would seem there has been a drastic turn of events in Edmonton with the situation effectively reversed according to National Hockey League insider Frank Seravalli. On Monday morning Seravalli was a guest on TSN 1260 radio in Edmonton and it was there that he shared his thoughts on the ongoing negotiations between the Oilers and these two veteran defensemen.

"The old switch-a-roo," said Seravalli with a laugh.

"Especially for Tyson Barrie a lot of people to this point have believed that it is a forgone conclusion that he is walking and going to market. I can tell you that is not the case, that the Oilers and Tyson Barrie's camp remain very much in contact and I think they recognize how good the fit was, leading all defensemen in scoring, Tyson Barrie recognizes how good the fit was. Now it is about finding dollars and terms that make sense."

That would be an indication that Barrie may still very well re-sign with the Oilers before hitting unrestricted free agency on July 28th, but what about Adam Larsson? According to Seravalli it would appear as though those talks have broken down with the insider believing that it is now more likely that Larsson will walk away as a free agent than Barrie.

"With regards to Adam Larsson, I think this has gone on so long that what first seemed like a forgone conclusion that he was signing, then it was only a matter of time, then I think the Duncan Keith trade threw things through a loop, and I think at this point the expectation is that Adam Larsson will head to market."

The insider left the door open for a return from Larsson, stating clearly that anything could change between now and the opening of free agency, but he also made it clear that he believes that is less likely than not.

"I think it is more unlikely than not that he ends up going to market and not coming back to Edmonton," said Seravalli.