The Edmonton Oilers have made a trade. The club has acquired defenseman Dmitry Kulikov from the New Jersey Devils in exchange for a conditional 2022 fourth-round draft pick. The pick will become a third-round draft choice if the Oilers win a round in the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs, according to TSN’s Gord Miller and Bob McKenzie. The third-round pick would be in 2022.
Kulikov has played in 38 games this past season, registering just two assists and a -4 rating. Kulikov has mostly played with P.K. Subban as his partner with the Devils, and averaged 19:33 per game. He’s posted a 53.5% Corsi For percentage (1.8 rel) and 52.7% Fenwick For (2.9 rel).
(All numbers via hockey-reference)
Kulikov is on a one-year, $1,150,000 contract that he signed with the Devils on October 22nd. Kulikov had played the previous three seasons with the Winnipeg Jets, appearing in 51 games in 2019-20 and four games during the Jets ‘Play-in’ round loss to the Calgary Flames last August. Kulikov will be a free agent this summer.
The expectation is that Kulikov will join Edmonton’s top-six on defense once he arrives into Alberta and completes the mandatory seven-day quarantine period. As of now, he’s only slated to miss two games, this Friday night against the Canucks and Saturday night against the Jets.
In terms of lineup spot, Kulikov could be a solid partner for Tyson Barrie, who has struggled lately. He could also, as a left-shot defenseman, pair up with Adam Larsson on a shutdown pairing. The move gives Head Coach Dave Tippett another veteran option capable of shutting down the opposition. It’s likely that Caleb Jones is the odd-man out as the seventh defenseman.
Here’s a look at Kulikov’s offensive, defensive and transition values thanks to Andy & Rono on Twitter (@HockeyStatsCZ).