Big names in Oilers trade thoughts

ROBIN BROWNLEE -- Edmonton Sun

, Last Updated: 8:46 AM ET

When a team comes off the rails like the Edmonton Oilers have, trade talk and speculation follow.

Likewise, a list of players who might help turn things around. In the case of the Oilers, that's fuelled talk about the possibility of landing a goaltender like Olaf Kolzig of Washington or Martin Biron of Buffalo and, perhaps, a centre like Viktor Kozlov of New Jersey.

As of now, should circumstances prompt GM Kevin Lowe to make a move, the names involved are just as likely to be Yan Stastny, Marc-Antoine Pouliot or even Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers as Kolzig or Kozlov.

"I'd like to solve our problems internally before we start to fire things against the wall and see what sticks," assistant GM Scott Howson said.

"That means having (Ty) Conklin get his game back. It might mean giving Mike Morrison a start.

''You try to do something if the team keeps struggling, whether that's calling two or three guys up or trying to make a deal."

Kolzig might be a fit if Conklin can't regain his groove and the Oilers don't turn things around, but, as of now, Ollie the Goalie isn't on the market, despite speculation to the contrary.

Same with Kozlov in New Jersey. Until Devils GM Lou Lamoriello knows when Patrik Elias will be healthy enough to return to the line-up, he's not dumping Kozlov to free salary cap space - the Oilers have some interest in Kozlov and there's speculation Alexei Semenov intrigues Lamoriello.

"The team we saw (last Friday) was not our team," Howson said.

"I'd like to see us playing to our capabilities again and then assess our needs. Maybe we do need a goalie, a scoring forward or a defenceman, but it does no good to try to fix everything right now.

"Let's get playing well. When other teams see you've lost six games in a row, they're pretty anxious to talk to you."


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