Grading The Belov Signing

Signing Anton Belov to a 1 year entry level contract was the first move by Craig Mactavish in his quest to guide the Oilers into the playoffs next season. I'm going to evaluate the signing and assign a score out of 15 to Mact based on these rules.

It appears as though Belov will fill the top 6 D-man role for this coming season which means Mactavish is eligble to score 15 points for the signing if the player meets all of the requirements.

How well does he fit the role?

Belov has played his entire career in the KHL and had a break out offensive season this year but there is no certainty that his game will translate well to the NHL. By all accounts Belov should make this team out of training camp and bring much needed size, speed, and puck movement to the back end. Based on the scouting reports Belov should be a substantial upgrade of Ryan Whitney who will be leaving the team as a UFA this off season meaning this signing does improve the team.

What was the cost?

Belov was signed as an UFA to a 1 year entry level deal with a cap hit of 1.5m so there are no assets being moved to get the player. The contract is 1 year which will lessen the risk of signing a player who has never played a game in the NHL. The 1.5m cap hit seems fair to me, the team can afford it for 1 year if the player is a bust and if he overperforms then the deal looks brilliant.

So...

Considering the risk that the player has never played in the NHL I would think that MacT is not finished adding depth at the back end.

Mact's Score: 10/15

Of course Mactavish can still sign another depth defensmen to get those other 5 points.

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