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Lucic’s comments on trade read like a parting shot to the Oilers

july 20, 2019
Edmonton seemingly pulled off a miracle Friday, trading away what many feel is one of the worst contracts in the NHL. In 2016, Milan Lucic signed a seven-year, $42 million deal with Edmonton as a free agent. His struggles didn’t necessarily begin right away. In his first season as an Oiler, he scored 23 goals and managed 50 points. It went downhill fast from there.

In the 2017-2018 season, Lucic managed just 10 goals and 34 points. The wheels completely fell off last year when the 31-year-old scored a measly six goals, with a total of 20 points. Many felt moving Lucic would be next to impossible given his lack of production and his cap hit. However, that was not to be the case. Lucic was shipped to Calgary Friday in exchange for James Neal, who is facing his own struggles. Edmonton retains 12.5 percent of Lucic’s salary. The Oilers may also have to send Calgary a 3rd round draft pick. That's only if Neal records at least 21 goals in the upcoming season and Lucic scores 10 fewer.

When Lucic was asked why he waived his no movement clause to go to Calgary, one can’t help but wonder if his words are a dig at Edmonton’s recent struggles as a team.

“It was important for me to go to a contending team, a team that was playing meaningful hockey on a night-to-night basis.”

Despite having one of the best players of this generation in Connor McDavid, Edmonton has missed the playoffs the last two seasons. Since 2010, Edmonton has gone through seven head coaches.

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