The Edmonton Oilers announced this morning that they had signed diminutive winger Vladimir Tkachev to a 3 year entry level contract.
The fan base was all atwitter about how the Oilers had uncovered “found money” in signing a promising young player who was passed over in the draft.
Problem is, it appears no one in Oiler management has a cursory familiarity with the CBA…an affliction shared by former Flames GM Jay Feaster when he signed Ryan O’Reilly to an offer sheet without having a clue that to join the Flames he would first have to pass through waivers because he had played the previous season in the KHL.
The NHL has rejected the contract ruling the young Russian ineligible to sign a contract based on his never having played a complete season in the CHL.
Now, you can debate the merits of the applicable clause until Mars is terraformed but the real issue is why doesn’t anyone in Oiler management have the CBA memorized and, more importantly, why didn’t they read it before they offered the contract.
It needs to be said that the Oilers have 3 current or former NHL General Managers on staff in Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Scott Howson as well as newly hired Bill Scott who, according to the Oilers’ website “served as the Director of Hockey Operations with the American Hockey League for four seasons. His duties included creation of league schedule, assisting in determining player fines and suspensions, supervising regular season and playoff games, and interpreting by-laws as well as the Collective Bargaining Agreement for member teams.
It appears the more things change, the more things stay the same.