Chiarelli: Yakupov 'just didn't work out here'

Bruce Bennett / Getty Images Sport / Getty

Peter Chiarelli shined the NHL's spotlight back on the Edmonton Oilers Friday, making a pair of significant moves days before the puck drops for the regular season.

First, he orchestrated the trade that sent 2012 first overall pick Nail Yakupov in exchange for a conditional third-round pick and prospect Zach Pochiro, a move Chiarelli believes could benefit the 23-year-old.

Related: Yakupov excited to join Blues: 'I don't know what winning is'

"We decided Nail deserved a fresh start ... We told him he's a good kid but it just didn't work out here," Chiarelli told media Saturday.

Shortly after trading Yakupov, Chiarelli added another piece to their developing blue line as the Oilers signed free-agent defenseman Kris Russell to a one-year contract.

Chiarelli said Russell's "speed and puck retrieval" are two of his strongest assets, and can see the veteran on either side of a defensive pairing.

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Chiarelli: Yakupov 'just didn't work out here'
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