Remember this guy? My bet is that most people won't. He put up 40 points in 46 regular season games this year as a 26 year-old which would be pretty good if it was in the NHL instead of the AHL. Yet, I'm intrigued by the possibility of bringing this player to Edmonton for a three main reasons: his NHL track record on the PP, his NHL track record at EV and his likely cost.
Firstly, he can bring something to the power play. Surely this list will have had some changes to it after this year and Ouellet might not even make the ice time requirement, but Tyler has shown in the past that Ouellet can perform at a very high level on the PP, i.e. better than any Oiler not named Hemsky.
Secondly, his even strength performance at the NHL level has been very good. Again, Tyler mentioned this at the start of the season when Ouellet was traded from Tampa Bay to Vancouver. The up-shot? In 2007-08 Ouellet played for the Lightning and managed to post 2.88 GFON/60 and 1.92 GAON/60 at 5v5. He scored 2.00 P/60 and was a +12 5v5 which led the team by 9. He was 6th in 5v5 ice time and 7th in QC among Lightning forwards so he did all this in a somewhat sheltered role. In 2006-07 Ouellet played a very similar role on the Penguins but with middling results, namely 2.77 GFON/60 and 2.77 GAON/60.
I am convinced that this is a pretty good NHL player. He's certainly shown more than a guy like Marc Pouliot and, given his likely price, will be a better bet to outperform a contract than Robert Nilsson. I don't know what his price point is going to be but I imagine he's probably expecting a pay cut since he cleared waivers twice and even cleared re-entry waivers once. If I were managing the Oilers I would try to get this guy to sign on for a long term deal at small money. Normally, that's a pipe dream but how bad does 5 or 6 years at $900,000 on a one-way deal sound if you've been riding the buses, unwanted by anyone in The Show for the last year?