Should The Edmonton Oilers Pursue Anthony Mantha?

Photo: NBC Sports

On a recent episode of the 32 Thoughts podcast, Elliotte Friedman entertained the idea of the Edmonton Oilers making a trade with the Washington Capitals for forward Anthony Mantha.

He sighted Ken Holland’s history with Mantha, selecting him 20th overall in the 2013 NHL Draft when he was the general manager of the Detroit Red Wings. Of course, there’d have to be at least one Detroit reference regarding Holland inching closer to the Trade Deadline. But does Mantha make sense for Edmonton? Through 53 games in his 9th NHL season, he has 18 goals and 13 assists for 31 points. He’s played 473 games throughout the entirety of his career and has 283 points.

Related Post: Could the Oilers Switch Kulak For Broberg?

As far as offensive production goes, he would help with secondary scoring on either the second or third line. That has been an issue for the Oilers after the All-Star break, and seeing the line blender come back has been an eye-roll. There’s only one gripe about his game that I’ll nitpick. Despite being 6’5″ and weighing 234 lbs., he doesn’t throw as many hits as he probably should. He has 30 this season, with his highest total being 91 in the 2017/2018 season. Granted, his current team has played a few less games than Edmonton. But even some Oilers players who don’t come with as much size or who aren’t associated with playing a gritty game have more hits. I’m not saying that it’s everything to bruise your opponents; it just doesn’t hurt to have that aspect in a 7 game series when the games get tougher and more intense. The other red flag is his $5.7M cap hit, albeit expiring in the offseason, but this is always going to be something to deal with when you’re trying to make a deep Playoff run.

Are you interested in Anthony Mantha? Are you not? Let me know.

Stephen Vani

Oilers fan in Toronto. Staying up past my bedtime for Western games since the mid 2000s.

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