Big John T
Joined: Sep 2018
You're stuck with Lucic barring a minor miracle where he wants to leave and join the very team that wants him at his full $6 million cap hit
4 more years, and then the Oilers can start fresh with a 27 year old McDavid hoping to win his first playoff game and start growing again
$6 million with a cap increase of $3 million per year (the increases have been steady even though revenues have been lagging and the escrow clawbacks climbing)
2019: 6 / 82.5 = 7.27%
2020: 6/85.5 = 7.02%
2021: 6/88.5 = 6.78% *8 team trade list
2022-2023: 6/91.5 = 6.56% **10 team trade list
Those final 2 years will have the Oilers paying purely to dump his cap hit.
Any forward earning more than 5% of the cap must be playing in the top 6 and special teams to deserve it.
Lucic's decline will accelerate given his age + weight + the reffing is allowing a faster game.
Bide your time, encourage him to be a good teammate that looks out for the younger kids.
Bank a bunch of prospects. If you're lucky, Lucic will agree to a trade to a team willing to rent out their cap space for prospects.
If you're really lucky, you can LTIR him for life but there's no advantage doing that before the 2021 season as there are other bad contracts like Russell and there's no buildup of prospects waiting to rush in.
This roster is at $88 million for next season. The Oilers are so screwed it would actually make sense to trade McDavid. Imagine if the Penguins were trying to now win their first cup with Crosby -- and he's got a 13 year contract that's not allowed today that softens his cap hit.
Toronto would have in the past entertained McDavid for Matthews straight up, and the Oilers could have flipped Matthews to Arizona for a truckload of picks and prospects.
McDavid may be worth his money but it's a short list of teams that have the cap room and flexibility with NTCs to take him on today.
I'd phone Joe Sakic in Colorado if they win the draft lottery with Ottawa's pick. Especially if there's a lockout coming, McDavid and Draisatl get paid no matter what, and the Oilers are already having trouble renewing seasons tickets with an expensive brand new stadium during an oil slump.
Jack Hughes + Tyson Jost + Nicolas Meloche + 3x COL 1st = 6 first round picks, 21 and under today = at least 4 NHLers hitting their prime when Lucic and Russell leave
That's just McDavid, you could dump Draisatl in NJ or NYI. Or you can hold on for 4 years and have a team that's not as good as if you had been bold