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REPORT: Karlsson Would Waive No-Movement Clause for Oilers?

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Credit: Hockey Shots/Dean Tait

The Edmonton Oilers are interested in Erik Karlsson, but is Karlsson interested in the Oilers?

That’s been the unanswered question hanging over the persistent Karlsson-to-Oilers trade rumors.

The San Jose Sharks star has a full no-movement clause (NMC) with his eight-year, $92 million contract. The 32-year-old blueliner, enjoying a renaissance campaign, has four more years left, $11.5 million AAV, in his deal after this season.

This means Karlsson has complete control over whether he stays or leaves San Jose.

“It’s believed Karlsson is open to waiving his no-movement clause to join Connor McDavid and Co.,” Chris Johnston wrote today.

And why not? McDavid and teammate Leon Draisaitl are arguably the two best forwards in the world, and Edmonton looks playoff-bound this season and in the foreseeable future.

This doesn’t mean, however, a trade between the San Jose Sharks and the Oilers will be easy.

At the heart of it is Karlsson’s massive contract. Although he inked his pact in Jun. 2019, he’s still the highest-paid defenseman in the NHL. Edmonton is already allocating $21 million of the $82.5 million salary cap to McDavid and Draisaitl. They’ll be hard pressed to add Karlsson’s $11.5 million on top of that.

The San Jose Sharks seem to be willing to retain a large portion of Karlsson’s remaining contract – about 20 percent – but the Oilers appear to be asking the Sharks to eat about 40 percent of the money until 2026-27.

REPORT: Oilers Want Sharks To Retain About 40% On Karlsson Trade?

There’s a number between 20 and 40, and maybe that’s the compromise? San Jose is already soaking up 34 percent of Brent Burns’s remaining contract.

If the Sharks retain say 31 percent of Karlsson’s contract, $3.565 million a year, that would turn the Norris Trophy frontrunner into a more palatable $8 million ($7.935 million, to be exact) AAV player.

The Trade Deadline is on Mar. 3. We’ll see if San Jose and Edmonton are able to find some common ground in the next 10 days.

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