Leon Draisaitl has just given a huge ultimatum to the Edmonton Oilers

Elliot Ben Jacob
July 5, 2024  (4:12 PM)

The Edmonton Oilers' Leon Draisaitl.
Photo credit: NHL

Star forward Leon Draisaitl has expressed his affection for the Edmonton Oilers, yet his agent's indicate that Draisaitl holds massive leverage in contract negotiations.

During an interview with Michael Bauer of Germany's EishockeyNews, Draisaitl's agent, Jiri Poner, highlighted that the decision now rests with the Edmonton Oilers. Poner appeared to give the team a deadline for extending Draisaitl's contract.
«There's no rush yet, but either it happens quickly, i.e. by the end of August, or it doesn't work out at all,» Poner said in German. «It will also become clear whether Edmonton wants him or not. Leon holds all the trump cards.»

Draisaitl is entering the final year of his current contract, which has an annual salary of $8.5 million. He is expected to seek a significant raise, potentially between $13.5 million and $14.5 million per year. Sportsnet's Elliotte Friedman recently noted that the Oilers might take their time with contract extension talks, but Poner seems to prefer a swift resolution from the club.
Poner also addressed the possibility of trade discussions if the two parties cannot reach an agreement and the risk of Draisaitl leaving as a free agent with no assets returning to Edmonton next summer.
«There are two important points. Firstly: What will a club be willing to give up for a short-term deal? Leon would then be a free agent and the club would lose far too much. And secondly: What would Connor McDavid do a year later when his contract expires and Edmonton has already given up his friend?»

Poner remains optimistic that a mutually satisfactory agreement can be achieved between the Oilers and Draisaitl, benefiting both sides.