While the collective bargaining agreement with the NHLPA expires at midnight tomorrow, there's lots of work for the Edmonton Oilers to do at the negotiating table. The Oilers will spend the next several days assigning players to the Edmonton Road Runners and will attempt to sign as many as seven players who have NHL contracts to AHL deals, avoiding a need for them to clear waivers to report to the farm.
The seven players targeted for AHL contracts are Tyler Moss, Dan Smith, Rocky Thompson, Jamie Wright, Nate DiCasmirro, Toby Petersen and Sean McAslan.
With the Road Runners opening training camp Sept. 30, the Oilers have 17 players who can be sent to the AHL without clearing waivers. They will be paid the minor-league portion of their contract under two-way provisions of their NHL deals.
The list includes Jeff Deslauriers, Jeff Woywitka, Doug Lynch and Jarret Stoll.
ON THE AIR: The Road Runners are expected to announce their first radio deal this week, and indications are the club has come to a rightsholders agreement with Corus Entertainment.
Corus owns 630 CHED, rightsholder for Oilers radio broadcasts, but sources say it'll be Cool 880, one of the other Corus stations, that gets the contract for 80 games.
The Road Runners will employ one full-time play-by-play man, with the plan being to use guest analysts and commentators.
AROUND THE RINK: Contract talks with agents for Radek Dvorak and captain Jason Smith will be suspended at midnight tomorrow if deals aren't in place ... The Oilers have agreed to a two-year contract with J.J. Hunter ... Fans attending tonight's game between the Oilers and Golden Bears can watch the final of the World Cup between Canada and Finland, which starts at 5 p.m. on the big screen in the U of A main gym for $5 at the door.