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March 29, 2013 | 5:26pm ET
Hemsky back in the rumor mill
TheFourthPeriod.com

Despite being a team with plenty of skill, it is obvious that the Edmonton Oilers are missing something this season.

They would like to add some grit to their top-six forward group and have been aggressively trying to acquire a top-tier defenseman.

In order to get that, however, the Oilers are going to have to consider trading one of their talented forwards. With the team's focus on rebuilding and youth, Ales Hemsky seems like the most likely contender for a move.

Every season, as the trade deadline rolls around, Hemsky is the subject of much trade talk. Last season, the Oilers quickly shut down the rumors, signing the 29-year-old winger to a two-year, $10 million extension.

Now, once again, his name is floating around the rumor mill.

TFP first reported Hemsky's name being discussed among other NHL clubs at the beginning of the month.

ESPN's Pierre LeBrun reiterated this week that Edmonton isn't actively shopping Hemsky, but they are taking calls. Given the Oilers' plethora of young forwards, there is certainly room for the club to explore any offers.

Hemsky has remained healthy all season, posting 19 points in 32 games so far. While his two-way play isn't at its best, he has been excellent on the powerplay. Still seen as a highly skilled forward, Hemsky could help a team in their push for the playoffs.

New Jersey and Detroit have been mentioned as two possible landing spots for Hemsky. Additionally, CSNNE.com's Joe Haggerty suggested that after losing the bid for Iginla, the Bruins could try to deal for Hemsky and defenseman Ryan Whitney, whom the Oilers are actively trying to trade.

Hemsky has one more year left on his contract and doesn't have a no-trade clause. With the lowered cap next season, however, Hemsky's $5 million cap hit could prove difficult for any team.

While there is no guarantee that the Czech native will go anywhere, his name will definitely be one you hear between now and April 3.


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