The Edmonton Oilers and pending unrestricted free agent defenceman Kris Russell have begun contract talks with a brief discussion on Tuesday, according to TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun. 

The 30-year-old scored one goal and added 12 assists over 68 games in 2016-17 with the Oilers, his first season with the club. Russell added four helpers over 13 playoff games as Edmonton made it to the second round where they lost to the Anaheim Ducks in seven games. 

The Oilers signed Russell to a one-year, $3.1 million contract in early October, just days before the season started.

The native of Caroline, Alta., has 30 goals and 151 assists over 641 games with the Columbus Blue Jackets, St. Louis Blues, Calgary Flames, Dallas Stars and Oilers.  

Forwards David Desharnais, Matt Hendricks and Tyler Pitlick as well as defencemen Eric Gryba and Andrew Ference will also be unrestricted free agents on July 1 if not signed to contracts.