Ken Holland explains why he dumped Kailer Yamamoto and Klim Kostin for nothing

How do you feel about these moves?



Former Detroit Red Wings general manager Ken Holland swung a deal with his successor Steve Yzerman earlier this afternoon, trading both Kailer Yamamoto and Klim Kostin to the Red Wings in exchange for "future considerations", which roughly translated, means essentially for nothing in return. 

Injuries limited Yamamoto to only 58 games last season, where he scored 10 goals with 15 assists. This came on the heels of his having scored 20 goals the prior season, a career high. Meanwhile, in 57 games last season, Kostin scored 11 goals and 10 assists.

There was no salary retention by the Oilers for either player, meaning that the fact that Edmonton ditched them both is essentially a move to free up some much-needed salary cap space.

And according to Holland, both players were necessary sacrifices in the salary cap world.

"I think if the cap was $86 or $87 million, it would work out. It's just that the cap never moved," Holland said. "Skinner's due a raise. Bouchard's due a raise. McLeod's due a raise. We made a deal for Ekholm at the deadline." 

"It's just the evolution of the way the system works, so the money gets moved around. I like Yamo. When we did [his contract] it last year, I had no idea what the cap was going to be this year. I was hoping that maybe we could catch up and get the cap moving. The cap doesn't move, it goes from $82.5 million to $83.5 million, so we've got to make difficult decisions."

"I talked to Klim Kostin's agent multiple times. Really, I was negotiating against the KHL, so I knew we weren't going to be able to find a way to keep him. So, I had to trade the player," Holland said about the negotiations. " Steve Yzerman was really interested in Klim Kostin, and obviously the $3 million for Yamo, I had to get some money off the cap."

NHL free agency officially kicks off on Saturday, and the Oilers GM will remain busy at attempting to re-sign his own pending free agents as well as potentially adding more depth to the roster. 

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