The NHL still hasn’t decided when the 2020 Draft will take place, however, there is a lot of chatter that it could take place in June despite the 2019-20 season being suspended and not completed for a lottery.
While several general managers across the league are not thrilled about the idea of holding the draft without a final standing, the Edmonton Oilers could secretly rejoice from an early draft.
Team insider David Staples cited Oilers Now host Bob Stauffer and Sportsnet’s Mark Spector speculating Jesse Puljujarvi’s trade value could increase during an early draft.
Under that proposed scenario, the league could allow draft picks, prospects, and players outside the league whose rights remain owned by NHL clubs, just like Puljujarvi, to be traded during the event.
As you know, Puljujarvi spent the season in Finland after requesting a trade from the Oilers, who weren’t looking to give him up for little return. He ended up tallying 24 goals and 53 points in 56 games with Karpat.
The 22-year-old remains a restricted free agent without arbitration rights. With no NHL veterans allows to be used as trade bait during the draft, the young winger could be more valuable to clubs seeking a second- or third-line winger next season.
When you think about teams like the Ottawa Senators or the Montreal Canadiens who have a surplus of draft picks in this year’s draft, a deal could make sense.