Duncan Keith's early retirement was a blessing for the Oilers. Not only are they saving his $5.5 million salary and then pawn the recapture penalty on the Chicago Blackhawks, they now receive all the intangibles of his guidance without any of the on-ice liability. A rare win-win-win-win.
Keith is reportedly signing a contract in a Player Development role within the Oilers' organization, per Mark Spector.
Spector writes, "Duncan Keith will sign a Player Development contract with the Oilers this season. He'll dip his toe into the hockey management world after a HHOF career. Similar to Draper, Horcoff, Verbeek etc. under Holland."
This is great news for the Oilers who are in the hunt for a Stanley Cup, as Keith has three of them. His playing limitations hail from Father Time's relentless pursuit, but that doesn't mean he is useless to a team in Edmonton's position.
Championship pedigree often breeds champions, and you can never have too many such individuals within an organization. With his team's position in mind, GM Ken Holland added goaltender Jack Campbell
and not much else, as he is seriously limited by cap constraints. The Oilers are a very good team, but with their forward and defensive depth, they just don't scream 'bonafide contenders.' Holland really needs to sort out his salary cap without stripping away quality parts of his roster, like, I don't know, Jesse Puljujärvi...