Jason Demers was released from his recent professional tryout with the Edmonton Oilers but he was back on the ice with them today. That led to speculation that he was going to sign a contract but that also may be a little premature. Frank Seravalli of Daily Faceoff tweets that Demers is expected to stay with the organization on an AHL PTO for the time being – something that will allow him to keep training. Kevin Weekes of ESPN, meanwhile, notes that the situation is “fluid” and Demers may sign an AHL contract.
The 34-year-old Demers hasn’t played an NHL game since 2020-21 and spent last season playing internationally. Once a consistent two-way presence in the league, he has 699 career games under his belt and 214 points. Adding that kind of experience on an AHL contract would certainly help the Bakersfield Condors, while sort of providing the Oilers with extra depth.
Though he couldn’t be recalled, the team could choose to sign him to a deal down the road if they face injury issues. In fact, they did almost this exact thing with Brad Malone last year, keeping him on an AHL deal before converting it to an NHL contract in early February. It wouldn’t cost them anything to do it, though Demers would obviously have to agree to a minor league deal, somewhere he hasn’t spent much time in his career.
Since the start of the 2010-11 season, Demers has played just a single game in the AHL – a match for the Tucson Roadrunners in 2018-19.