Murray, 28, is coming off a year spent with the Colorado Avalanche, one which resulted in a Stanley Cup championship–though he had little to do with it. The veteran defenseman didn’t play a single game in the playoffs for Colorado and suited up just 37 times during the regular season, recording four assists.
Interestingly enough, Edmonton fans will certainly be plenty familiar with the player, given his connection to one of the most infamous draft misses in team history. In 2012, the Oilers decided to pass on Murray, one of a huge number of defensemen that were ranked highly, and select Nail Yakupov first overall. The Columbus Blue Jackets would nab Murray next–a move that still might be considered a mistake, after so many others from the first round went on to star in the NHL.
It’s never been quite that level for Murray, who simply couldn’t stay healthy through the early part of his career and lost important development time because of it. Even in his post-draft year of 2012-13, he played only 23 games for the Everett Silvertips, a trend that would continue as he transitioned into the NHL.
Now a decade after being drafted, Murray has played in only 432 regular season games at the highest level, despite seeing just a single AHL contest in his entire career. At times it has seemed like he is on the injured list more than he’s on the ice, something that he’ll try to change as he heads back to Canada for the first time in his career.
The Regina, Saskatchewan native is an interesting addition for the Oilers, who already project to have a pretty full blue line for the upcoming season. There’s absolutely no risk with a league minimum deal like this one, though it will put a little more pressure on a young player like Philip Broberg to perform, given he is still waiver exempt.