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Edmonton Oilers Working Towards Darnell Nurse Contract

Edmonton Oilers Working Towards Darnell Nurse Contract
Published On: Tue, Aug 07
Mar 24, 2016; San Jose, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse (25) and defenseman Adam Clendening (27) fights for the puck with San Jose Sharks right wing Melker Karlsson (68) on the boards during the third period at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Kenny Karst-USA TODAY Sports

Yesterday when we published an updated list of the remaining unsigned restricted free agents, any Edmonton Oilers fan would have focused in on one name.A Darnell NurseA is still without a contract after his breakout season in 2017-18, and could potentially make it tough on his team with a long-term contract demand. The Oilers have just under $5MM in cap space remaining, a good chunk of which could go to Nurse if his new contract buys out any unrestricted free agent years. Still, GMA Peter ChiarelliA is confident that a deal will get done with the young defenseman,A explaining to 630 CHED radioA that RFA contracts just take a little longer to work through.

The big question for the Oilers will be how much cap space to commit to Nurse, given that the team already has nearly $18MM/year invested in four other defensemen.A Andrej Sekera,A Oscar Klefbom,A Adam LarssonA andA Kris RussellA are all signed for at least three seasons, and with a huge chunk of the cap already going toA Connor McDavidA andA Leon DraisaitlA the team has to be quite careful with their salary going forward. A bridge deal for Nurse could be the best for both sides, as a three-year contract would still leave him as a restricted free agent with plenty of cap space to give him on a long-term deal. Whether the Nurse camp would be open to that isna€™t clear, but it would be a way to maximize his earnings later in his career.

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