Sutter is joining the Oilers for training camp in September on a professional tryout agreement, team reporter Bob Stauffer confirmed on Tuesday night.
“Hearing that Brandon Sutter, 34, 6'3″ right shot center…who hasn't played the last couple of seasons…Will be coming to Training Camp on a PTO,” wrote Stauffer.
The veteran center hasn't played for the last two NHL seasons as he has continued to deal with long-term COVID-19 symptoms. Although he tested positive for the virus while playing with the Vancouver Canucks during the 2021 campaign, he finished the season with the British Columbia-based organization.
The 34-year-old re-upped with the Canucks on a one-year pact ahead of the 2021-22 season, but didn't end up playing due to health complications. He was also held out for the entire 2022-23 season.
Sutter has played in 770 NHL games over his career for the Carolina Hurricanes, Pittsburgh Penguins and Canucks, although he hasn't had much postseason success. He's played in just 50 playoff contests over a 12-year pro career.
The 2007 11th overall pick has scored 152 goals and 137 assists for 289 career points.
Sutter could make sense for the Oilers, a team that is relatively thin on center depth. He could make a lot of sense in a 3C or 4C role, spots that are currently occupied by Ryan McLeod and Lane Pederson.
Edmonton has $3.5 million in cap space, per Cap Friendly, and could certainly fit Sutter with that, especially on a one or two-year deal if he impresses in training camp. But the Oilers still need to sign restricted free agent and budding young star Evan Bouchard, which will certainly be a priority for the organization going forward.
Brandon Sutter has been a reliable middle-six player throughout his career, and is a very solid penalty killer as well. His best days are absolutely behind him, but his defense first style of play could be coveted on a team with offensive superstars in Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl.
He'll have the opportunity to prove that he can still hang in the big leagues when training camp gets underway in September.