Ryan Strome is the newest member of the Edmonton Oilers and it’s safe to say that he couldn’t be happier about what lies ahead here in Edmonton.
“Super excited,” said Strome. “I was at a loss for words. There are a lot of great things going on in Edmonton.
“Just from watching them in the playoffs this season, I’m really ecstatic about joining the group. I’ve already had a lot of the guys reach out to me already, and that says a lot about them.”
Strome registered a career high 50 points during the 2014-15 season, but the last two seasons his production dipped. Last season Strome tallied just 30 points in 69 games before a broken wrist ended his season early. The injury came at a bad time for Stome who felt like his game was starting to come around.
“It was disappointing getting hurt. I was starting to feel really good. It’s the best I felt in a couple of years and I really felt like I was trending in the right direction,” added Strome.
“I think coming to Edmonton I need to have that confidence and swagger offensively, and just play my game.”
LISTEN: Ryan Strome’s first media scrum as an Edmonton Oiler
Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli made it clear that cap management was a big reason why Eberle was traded. But Chiarelli also feels that Strome brings a number of intangibles to the table.
“Ryan hasn’t put up the numbers like Jordan, but he has some things to his game that we feel can help us in our division, says Chiarelli. “He’s got good size, he has a terrific wrist shot, he’s a very cerebral player that can play both centre or the wing.”
Right now it’s unclear where Strome will slide in on the Oilers depth chart. That may be up to Oilers head coach Todd McLellan, but Chiarelli said Strome’s versatility is a valued asset in today’s NHL.
“If you can put two centres on a line it’s to your advantage, added Chiarelli.
“I think he’s a natural centre, but he can certainly rip a wrsit shot, so he’s quite good on the wing also.”
LISTEN: Peter Chiarelli talks about the Strome/Eberle trade
If Strome moves to the wing that may mean playing with Connor McDavid or Leon Draisaitl, which is an option that Stome seems very open to.
“I remember sitting in my basement watching the playoffs a couple of months ago, and I was like holy these guys are good players,”
The 6’1″, 200 pound forward turns 24 in July. He has one year left on his contact at $2.5 million a season.