We’ve been looking at different options for the Edmonton Oilers this summer but we’ve yet to really look at tough guys. The role of the enforcer is limited now and few players who only offer toughness seem to make it in the NHL these days, but are there hybrids? That is, are there tough guys who can also play? That’s what the Oilers hoped they had found in Milan Lucic, but some speculation is that Edmonton may be looking at another tough guy who can play in Antoine Roussel.
The Oilers are looking at adding pieces this summer and Roussel wasn’t a name being bantered about much. But, longtime Oilers reporter and journalist Jim Matheson suggests the Oilers might be interested.
If Oilers are looking for role player on July 1 and price is right, how can they go wrong on Dallas LW Antoine Roussel, 10 pts in 16 career games against Oilers and has always been pain in the butt to play against. He's coming off poor year and they might get him cheap.
— Jim Matheson (@NHLbyMatty) May 23, 2018
If the Oilers choose not to make any blockbuster moves would trying to sign Roussel be something worth looking at? Roussel is an unrestricted free agent on July 1st is 28 years old and not an expensive option. He had a down year in 2017-18 with five goals and 17 points in 73 games. He’s not a dynamic scorer by any stretch — his best season being 14 goals and 29 points — but perhaps he could help as a depth option.
Matheson says, “If the Oilers are looking for a role player on July 1 and the price is right, how can they go wrong on Dallas left winger Antoine Roussel, 10 pts in 16 career games against Oilers and has always been pain in the butt to play against. He’s coming off poor year and they might get him cheap.”
There is a risk here. First, he could provide next to no offense if this past year is an indication of what he will do in the future. Second, he’s seen around the NHL as a pest. Sometimes that’s great to have on your team and sometimes it’s not. There is a difference between an Alex Burrows and a David Perron. Which one would Roussel be?