We’d written often about Jesse Puljujarvi’s future but the long and short of it was, if Puljujarvi was going to play in the NHL this season, he was going to need to be signed by the Edmonton Oilers or traded before 5pm Eastern today (December 1, 2019). That didn’t happen.
The deadline came and went and the Oilers announced no trades, no signings and no one should be surprised. Early on Sunday, TSN’s Bob McKenzie said:
Neither Puljujarvi nor [Julius] Honka are interested in signing with the clubs that currently retain their rights. It’s my understanding there is no chance EDM will trade Puljujarvi’s rights before today’s deadline, but DAL is working on the possibility of trading Honka.
The fact Puljujarvi wasn’t likely to sign in Edmonton was quite public. That he wanted to stay and finish the 2019-20 season in Finland became public knowledge about a month ago. Thus, even if the Oilers were to have moved him, he probably wasn’t going to board a plane headed back to for North America.
Instead, the Oilers will reexamine Puljujarvi’s future sometime around the 2020 NHL Entry Draft and see what’s out there for a former fourth-overall pick who is showing quite well overseas.
So Now What?
Keep in mind, Holland can still trade Puljujarvi. If a team is looking at moving a piece at this year’s trade deadline and the package going back the other way includes Puljujarvi, then there’s no reason Holland would have to wait. It’s simply that the team acquiring Puljujarvi can’t put him in their lineup this season.
Expect to hear Puljujarvi’s name come up often. It might not come up as often as it has over the past few weeks, but that doesn’t mean GM’s have completely forgotten he’s over in Finland lighting it up.
The New Jersey Devils, anyone?