ABOUT NAIL

Hope Smoke (a brilliant twitter bonus) tweeted out an interview today with Dallas Eakins and specifically on the subject of Nail Yakupov. The young Russian is on his third coach and Eakins had him for most of his NHL career so far.

  • Eakins on Yakupov: “Our long-term goal with Nail wasn’t to have him be a player that just scores & doesn’t worry about anything else. Ours & his [Yakupov] own long-term goal was to be a well rounded player & a guy you can rely on to do all kinds of things. Some people equated [Yakupov] not scoring with him not playing well & that’s not true. He was learning the other side of the game. A veteran centre like Roy is paying huge dividends for [Yakupov]. It was something that we couldn’t give him when I was there” Source

The entire quote is longer, this is edited, apologize if the thrust is changed but suspect the truth is surrounded here. When Yakupov was drafted, I spoke to an NHL scout about him and the general idea was this: Good goal scorer, terrific passer, defensively unaware. This scout told me the team taking him would need to be acutely aware of his downside and protect him from the things that could get him in trouble.

I think that’s exactly what the Oilers did under Tambellini/Krueger, but the MacT/Eakins change meant a shift in direction. The words of Eakins above jolted me today because honestly that’s the right call. If you have a one-trick pony who is willing to learn the finer points of the game, music! It didn’t work out and we are here but I have no quarrel with the intentions.

YAK’S 2014-15 SEASON

PLAYER BOXCARS CORSI FOR % 5X5 SHOTS/GM 5X5 PER 60
EAKINS YAK 31gp, 4-4-8 48.9 1.96 0.93
NELSON YAK 30gp, 5-8-13 43.0 2.33 1.30

We’re taking a quick glance here and I’m using 5×5 for Corsi and points/60. The boxcars look more productive and part of that is no doubt the power play. However, Yak’s 5×5/60 has improved and he’s shooting more. Jason Strudwick mentioned to me that the young Russian seems to be taking less of a windup and because of it appears to be more accurate. Whatever the reason, the last 30 games have produced more actual results.

However, the Corsi for % is in the ditch, and that’s with the vaunted veteran in Roy. Eakins words above about long term, combined with the change in the Corsi weather, looks for all the world like a return to the Ralph results. By eye, Yakupov looks better to me but he’s still all over hell’s half acre defensively and that’s an issue that goes back to the conversation with an (eastern NHL team) scout.

Interesting. Do you want a one-dimensional scorer or to continue down the trail of developing a two-way type? Nail was touched by God, he’s a real talent but I’m wondering if the best course of action is to find him the new Shawn Horcoff and have him play Lemarie to Yakupov’s Lafleur. Either way, they must get production from this fellow and both results above are wanting. You can’t succeed with a 43% 5×5 shot differential and no one is going to pay a scoring winger for 8 points in 31 games.

YAKUPOV CAREER

PLAYER BOXCARS CORSI FOR % 5X5 5X5 PER 60 5×4 PER60
2012-13 48, 17-14-31 42.4 2.20 3.75
2013-14 63, 11-13-24 44.8 1.45 2.68
2014-15 61, 9-12-21 45.8 1.09 3.00

I’m not on the radio today, my friend Dave Jamieson will do the show. I’m back tomorrow noon to 2 with Paul Almeida as we get ready for the deadline.

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207 Responses to "ABOUT NAIL"

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  1. frjohnk says:

    Bruce with a great article, highly recommend it after the last couple of days.
    WOWY: After 31 games with Dallas Eakins and 31 games without, have Edmonton Oilers improved?
    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2015/02/27/coach-wowy-after-31-games-with-dallas-eakins-and-31-without-have-edmonton-oilers-improved/

  2. Gret99zky says:

    Rebuilder:
    I’m all for self driving cars, if nothing else it would remove the possibilty of impared drivers.

    Same. And those bloody text-n-drivers.

  3. godot10 says:

    Woodguy: This is the most ridiculous statement i’ve read in a week.

    Coach ruins young player by giving him cherry ozone starts and easy comp.

    You teach a young player to check in the AHL or on a soft minutes line against a easy a line match as one can manage. O-zone starts, a la Vigneault, should be reserved for offensive production from your equivalent of the Sedin line.

    Or else expect to lose, which is what Eakins did a lot of. If you want a chance to win, Hall, Nugent-Hopkins, and Eberle should be getting those o-zone starts. When one has a bad team, I prefer optimizing line matching to optimizing zone starts. Optimizing zone starts works better when one has a decent team with decent balance.

  4. blainer says:

    I have to wonder LT how things will turn out for Yak if a vet coach comes in next year ie. Hitchcock.. I think Nelson is the right coach for Yak as he seems to be more of a motivator and is more in tune with developing players from his time in OKC. If there is another coaching change I really think Yak will have been traded or will be after the change.

  5. Gret99zky says:

    frjohnk:
    Bruce with a great article, highly recommend it after the last couple of days.
    WOWY: After 31 games with Dallas Eakins and 31 games without, have Edmonton Oilers improved?
    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2015/02/27/coach-wowy-after-31-games-with-dallas-eakins-and-31-without-have-edmonton-oilers-improved/

    The numbers seem to support that Eakins was a slighly more effective coach of a 29th place NHL team than Nelson has been (still 29th).

    Woohoo! DFL hockey forevar!!

    We wait.

  6. Numenius says:

    Gret99zky: The numbers seem to support that Eakins was a slighly more effective coach of a 29th place NHL team than Nelson has been (still 29th).

    Woohoo!DFL hockey forevar!!

    We wait.

    No they don’t. Different numbers support different things, and one can make the case that on the whole they support Nelson.

    Plus, the sample of Nelson’s games includes the games with McT.

    Plus, a lot of Nelson’s inferior numbers could have little to do with the coach, but more to the losses of Hall, Pouliot, and Perron and other players to injury (which are more of a loss than the gain of Roy and Klinkhammer).

  7. Bruce McCurdy says:

    frjohnk:
    Bruce with a great article, highly recommend it after the last couple of days.
    WOWY: After 31 games with Dallas Eakins and 31 games without, have Edmonton Oilers improved?
    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2015/02/27/coach-wowy-after-31-games-with-dallas-eakins-and-31-without-have-edmonton-oilers-improved/

    Thanks for the push on my Coach WOWY post.

    Btw, I also wrote this post on Jeff Petry and Antti Raanta way back on Tuesday that appears to have flown under the radar to some degree.

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