Despite forward Jesse Puljujarvi’s desire to get an opportunity to start over with a new team, the young winger still remains with the Edmonton Oilers. Now Kurt Leavins of the Edmonton Journal writes that Puljujarvi’s agent, Markus Lehto, had a verbal agreement with former Oilers general manager Peter Chiarelli about options for Puljujarvi if things didn’t work out. Problem is, Chiarelli is no longer in charge and new general manager Ken Holland didn’t make that agreement.
However, Leavins writes that Lehto proceeded to put pressure on Holland in hopes of forcing the newly-minted GM to trade him at the draft several weeks ago, requesting that his client doesn’t see the new front office or coaching staff as the change that he needs to find his game. However, Lehto’s demands didn’t work as Holland didn’t get one quality offer for the 21-year-old and former fourth-overall pick in 2016 and the veteran GM called Lehto’s bluff. No team would be willing to give up a significant amount of assets for a player who scored four goals last season and underwent hip surgery that ended his 2018-19 season prematurely.
With training camps in Europe about to open up and most rosters already full on most top-level teams, Puljujarvi’s options continue to decrease as the only teams that likely would give the talented youngster a contract are secondary teams that likely would pay less than the $874K that he could make with Edmonton’s qualifying offer. His options are dwindling and it’s looking more and more likely that he might have to accept the team’s qualifying offer which could force him to play a full season in the AHL or find himself in a secondary league in Europe, neither being the answer he’s really looking for.