PHILADELPHIA - Unless the Oilers up their ante by a significant margin or the Florida Panthers lower their demands, don’t expect Edmonton to pick first overall for the fourth time in five years.
Oilers senior vice-president of hockey operations Scott Howson says the Oilers and Panthers had been talking off and on since May about the prospect of flipping picks, but weren’t able to come to terms and the conversation has since cooled off.
“There’s not much discussion,” Howson said of what’s been transpiring the last few days. “We’ve talked to Florida a little bit over the past month about moving up, but there’s nothing imminent.
“Having said that, there is still 48 hours to go and a lot of things can happen.”
Failing a draft-floor shocker, the Oilers will select third overall, where they hope to still find Prince Albert Raiders centre Leon Draisaitl.
“We’re quite content to stay where we are,” said Howson, adding the Oilers, whether it’s first or third, should be able to address an urgent and specific area of concern. “Either way we’re probably going to fill a position of need, whether it’s centre or defence.”