MAKE IT SO

Terry Jones had the story in the Edmonton Sun today, Mac is back and we’re just waiting for the title. I find it interesting that the title is to come, it perhaps implies there may be an addition (possibly Mike Babcock as the ‘coach and player personnel) to the management group. I also wondered if Chiarelli could be bringing someone with him from Boston (Scott Bradley?) to help with the chores, but he can’t talk to them (as Jones discusses in the article).

  • Chiarelli: “He’ll be No. 2 in all aspects. He’ll be my eyes and ears in all areas. I want to have strong people with strong opinions.”

One wonders about the conversations over names like Niki Nikitin but they’ll survive. I’m kind of split on this decision to be honest. MacT (as you know) is someone this blog’s author respects a great deal and when he was announced as GM it was a good day for me. Things did not work out well, but then again it’s been two years not five.

I’m of a mind that you start as you mean to go, which in this case means cut ties with the past and move on down the line with a new group. Chiarelli’s thinking probably reflects greater maturity and familiarity with the actual business of turning north in the NHL:

  • Chiarelli: “One of the first things I have to do is find out what the landscape is. There may be changes. But they are not imminent.”

I think that’s the thread here, folks. Chiarelli is unable to talk to Keith Gretzky or Scott Bradley at this time, so there’s a period of time where status quo makes sense. Fair?

The next group we should hear about is the scouts. I imagine we’ll hear about the scouting meetings in the next 10 days and then the draft end of June, but in between those two periods (early May to late June) is likely the time of the bullets.

Scott Howson seems safe, according to the train of thought offered by Jim Matheson at the Edmonton Journal.

  • Chiarelli: “I haven’t talked to Scott (about the current management shift) but I dealt with Scott a lot of years in Columbus. I like him a lot. He’s got a really good eye. I remember talking to him when they drafted (Ryan) Johansen (fourth overall in 2010). He hadn’t developed yet, but I remember thinking they might have had the best player that draft. If he’s not, he’s pretty darned close.”

Great article by Matty, both are must read. At the end of the day (thanks Chris Pronger!) I think that’s the thrust of today’s news. Peter Chiarelli doesn’t have access to his people, they are under contract to the Bruins. He has a lot of information to digest in a quick hurry and there’s mutual respect here.

I have argued for years that the amateur scouting (since Kevin Prenderast moved out) has improved and believe it has (the wobbly 2014 draft aside). If the scouts get the bullet and no one else does, for me that’s a crazy crazy result for the forensics.

Today’s news has me happy for MacT but wondering, at least a little, about the process and the value of Chiarelli’s hire. Oilers fans need his team building ability and clarity, and if he can do it with MacT as his number one then it’s a good day.

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146 Responses to "MAKE IT SO"

  1. Colieo87 says:

    Lt can you really see Babcock coming to Edmonton not as head coach and player development but as HC/assistant GM? i got a carton of smokes bet thinking so!

  2. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Think that’s it right there.

    Chia can’t go scorched Earth just before the draft and July 1. He sees some lieutenants who knows the organization. He can use them for a while before bringing his own guys in.

    That said, I think as Kinger said, having Chia, MacT, Howson is a case of too many head chefs in one kitchen. It also looks eerily similar to bringing in a new head coach but insisting he keeps the existing assistants. Maybe Chiarelli is unaware of that situation but for Oiler fans, a clean break is probably the best thing.

    Groupthink with all these GMs is dangerous. I hope 1) this is Chiarelli’s decision 100% and 2) this is a temporary situation

  3. Showerhead says:

    I think this is kind of funny as far as decisions go.

    If you gave me a dilapidated garden to clean up, I’d weed and till the whole thing before I started planting any seeds. It looks like Chiarelli came in, decided he liked the look of one particular flower, and decided to skip the clearcut in favour of some concentrated pruning.

    Wise? Depends on what you think of MacT and whatever warts he’s got blossoming.

  4. frjohnk says:

    Even though Im not thrilled about some of the bets MacT had as GM, Im happy he is still around.

  5. spoiler says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Think that’s it right there.

    Chia can’t go scorched Earth just before the draft and July 1. He sees some lieutenants who knows the organization. He can use them for a while before bringing his own guys in.

    That said, I think as Kinger said, having Chia, MacT, Howson is a case of too many head chefs in one kitchen. It also looks eerily similar to bringing in a new head coach but insisting he keeps the existing assistants. Maybe Chiarelli is unaware of that situation but for Oiler fans, a clean break is probably the best thing.

    Groupthink with all these GMs is dangerous. I hope 1) this is Chiarelli’s decision 100% and 2) this is a temporary situation

    I think it would be very strange to announce MacT as his 2nd in command and then let him go say July 15.

    I think MacT is here for next season at least.

    I’m going off vague memory here, but it seems to me Chia didn’t start to make a lot of changes in Boston till year 2.

    In the incestuous world of the NHL, diplomacy is probably an essential trait.

  6. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    spoiler: I think it would be very strange to announce MacT as his 2nd in command and then let him go say July 15.

    I think MacT is here for next season at least.

    I’m going off vague memory here, but it seems to me Chia didn’t start to make a lot of changes in Boston till year 2.

    In the incestuous world of the NHL, diplomacy is probably an essential trait.

    Yes, I didn’t mean he’d fire them all right after free agency in the draft. I think some lesser people may leave then, but the main guys are likely here for a while. Which is understandable but up for debate whether this is a good or bad thing.

  7. Showerhead says:

    spoiler: I think it would be very strange to announce MacT as his 2nd in command and then let him go say July 15.

    I think MacT is here for next season at least.

    I’m going off vague memory here, but it seems to me Chia didn’t start to make a lot of changes in Boston till year 2.

    In the incestuous world of the NHL, diplomacy is probably an essential trait.

    I take it the same way. If you keep him at all, you keep him for a calendar year – give or take an imbecilic or inspired action on the part of MacT.

  8. Richard S.S. says:

    LoweTide

    I have a Podcast App on my iPhone. I can get James Gregor’s Shows’ Podcasts on it. Why not yours? Your Podcast on the TSN Site is the only one I will listen too.

  9. Lowetide says:

    Richard S.S.:
    LoweTide

    I have a Podcast App on my iPhone.I can get James Gregor’s Shows’ Podcasts on it.Why not yours?Your Podcast on the TSN Site is the only one I will listen too.

    http://www.tsn.ca/radio/edmonton-1260/shows/the-lowdown-with-lowetide-1.53052

  10. blainer says:

    I have to hope PC has the feeling of NO ties to the mistakes MacT has made and cleans up said mistakes. NN Ference and Goaltending. MacT tells these guys he is not in charge and the new sheriff wants you to move on.. sorry and wish you both the best. That is what I like about the new Management… NO loyalty to any of the players.

    Now MacT has done some nice things such as the Perron trade Gordon Hendricks and from what I see the drafting of Nurse… I am ok with his staying.. BUT.. PC can listen to his suggestions but at the end of the day hopefully can assess the D correctly.

  11. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

  12. Lowetide says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

    Well, he actually says he remembers thinking they MIGHT have the best player in the draft. Iirc, the Oil Change show had that exact conversation (about Johansen).

  13. spoiler says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

    Yes, never quite heard him express disappointment in his own pick, 2 slots earlier, in such terms before.

    Guess we’re just going to have to live with the fact that Chia doesn’t think of Seguin the way you do.
    😉

  14. godot10 says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

    You seem to be forgetting that Tambellini and MacGregor tried hard to trade with Columbus to get their pick so they could pick Johansen (in addition to Hall).

  15. Showerhead says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

    Yeah, I think he played that one a bit aggressively. I’d love to hear the tone, but I feel like this comment looks more like “finding a great thing to say about Scott Howson” than “saying something disparaging about Hall”. Still, I wish he would have kept that sound bite in check.

  16. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    blainer,

    MacT wanted to run Schultz and Klefbom as his top pair next year. He gave endorsements to Nikitin and Ference. He has given ample evidence he has no clue how to put together a defense. I don’t want Chia listening to MacT on D except to do the opposite of what he asks. MacT to find some checking forwards? Absolutely.

    Dashingsilverfox,
    Not sure if you saw my reply to you in last thread about Lowe and MacT.

    Also, on RJ: He very well might become that, at least in Chiarelli’s eyes. Remember he likes the heavier types with skill. Johansen brings so much more bulk up the middle than Hall or Seguin. That was a bit of a reach pick by CBJ at the time at #4 but it is looking like a very, very good call.

    2010 draft shaping up to be very, very strong. Possibly best since 2003. Tarasenko, Fowler etc pushing to make their case as in the mix for the best picks from that 1st round as well.

  17. Showerhead says:

    Lowetide: Well, he actually says he remembers thinking they MIGHT have the best player in the draft. Iirc, the Oil Change show had that exact conversation (about Johansen).

    Oh – say more? Oilers management were the folks discussing Johansen, presumably? Likely after his monster 13/14 if I had to guess.

  18. Lowetide says:

    Showerhead: Oh – say more? Oilers management were the folks discussing Johansen, presumably? Likely after his monster 13/14 if I had to guess.

    No, this was leading up to the 2010 draft. Someone said “he told me he was going to be the best player in ths draft” and they were commenting on how good he was.

  19. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Showerhead: Yeah, I think he played that one a bit aggressively. I’d love to hear the tone, but I feel like this comment looks more like “finding a great thing to say about Scott Howson” than “saying something disparaging about Hall”. Still, I wish he would have kept that sound bite in check.

    Wouldn’t worry about Hall’s feelings. This type of thing would only motivate him. Some people need coddling; Hall does not.

  20. Dahoosman says:

    On Mac T: I personally like the move for a few reasons. I think that Mac has a pretty decent hockey mind, and as long as there is definitive accountability in final decision making, having a smart person with a differing perspective can inform or solidify your own.

    Plus, if Mac wants to move on, where’s he going to go? He didn’t light the world on fire as a GM. He found out coaching a bad team in Edmonton didn’t lead to a plethora of opportunity, so why would building one?

    The line, “high water floats all boats” is true. Plus, maybe he’ll have someone to learn a lot from. Someone with many connections to a few other organizations as well. If your chosen career is GM, and not just Oilers GM, this move makes sense. Gain some credibility and become the next Jim Nill. Why not?

  21. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Lowetide: No, this was leading up to the 2010 draft. Someone said “he told me he was going to be the best player in ths draft” and they were commenting on how good he was.

    Didn’t the Oilers’ management allow on film that CBJ wanted Eberle for Johansen at that draft and they all shared a big laugh? Or am I recalling something that didn’t happen.

  22. sliderule says:

    Mact and Howson have been doing a lot of scouting so it makes sense to keep around till after draft.Over the summer I would expect one or both gone.

    The amateur scouting needs a new head scout.This head scout will be based in Edmonton and someone Chiarelli trusts.

    The oiler poor drafting after first round is a matter of record and can’t continue if they are going to become competitive when they are no longer making first picks.

  23. Showerhead says:

    Lowetide: No, this was leading up to the 2010 draft. Someone said “he told me he was going to be the best player in ths draft” and they were commenting on how good he was.

    Oh, OK – great. And, just because I’m obtuse: is that first “he” referring to Ryan Johansen or Howson? IE Did R-Jo claim “I’m going to be soooo great” or did Howson divine that?

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”: Wouldn’t worry about Hall’s feelings. This type of thing would only motivate him. Some people need coddling; Hall does not.

    I tend to agree with you in terms of the actual effects of the quote. I still don’t think it’s accurate, but yeah: good point.

  24. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Dahoosman,

    It makes sense for MacT. No one in the NHL was going to give him a better job at this time. Does it make sense for the Oilers? To me, in the sense of continuity it does, but otherwise I’m not so sure. Team was worse after MacT than before him.

  25. loveblast says:

    It’s also surprising that MacT would accept a role reporting to the guy brought in to do the job he failed at. Standard process in a situation like this is to leave the organisation entirely.

  26. Richard S.S. says:

    Lowetide,

    Yes, I listen to that. It’s just that I work 12 hour shifts and I can get three days behind. Downloading your show and taking it to work would be amazing. I just don’t know how it’s done, but almost every site is getting one., especially the Blue Jays sites. Aren’t the Oilers just as significant?

  27. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    loveblast:
    It’s also surprising that MacT would accept a role reporting to the guy brought in to do the job he failed at. Standard process in a situation like this is to leave the organisation entirely.

    If MacT had more of a track record, absolutely right. But in his case, 2 years as a newbie GM on a bad team where he accomplished little, he probably preferred an apprenticeship and swallowing this pride over looking for wok elsewhere (and likely having to consider coaching again).

  28. Lowetide says:

    Richard S.S.:
    Lowetide,

    Yes, I listen to that.It’s just that I work 12 hour shifts and I can get three days behind.Downloading your show and taking it to work would be amazing.I just don’t know how it’s done, but almost every site is getting one., especially the Blue Jays sites.Aren’t the Oilers just as significant?

    Oh God, this is technology. Okay, well Ill ask. Jason has it on his site?

  29. Johnny Larue says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    It all depends on the chain of command . I don’t think Chia takes the job unless he is in charge I think this is his decision so be it lets see what happens next because from now on it is on his head.

  30. Showerhead says:

    If you’re Chiarelli and you want to learn about the team you have in front of you as fast as possible, and if you also trust or at least have time for MacT’s opinions, keeping him on the staff protects your most valuable source.

    Maybe that’s all this is?

  31. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Showerhead:
    If you’re Chiarelli and you want to learn about the team you have in front of you as fast as possible, and if you also trust or at least have time for MacT’s opinions, keeping him on the staff protects your most valuable source.

    Maybe that’s all this is?

    Or maybe it’s like getting married and having your new spouse’s ex move into the guest room.

    What could go wrong?

  32. Richard S.S. says:

    Lowetide,

    Yes, The Jason Gregor Show has a podcast available which downloads four hours of his show. You can set the podcast to check for it every hour to once a month, whatever your choice. Time to get a Smartphone or life passes you by.

  33. Магия 10 says:

    “He’ll be No. 2 in all aspects.”

    Tier 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  34. Mr DeBakey says:

    Today’s news has me happy for MacT but wondering, at least a little, about the process and the value of Chiarelli’s hire.

    The hiring of Chiarelli will have value if he sheds the organisation of those pesky “Oilerisms”:
    – The NHL is not a development league
    – Large, glaring holes in the roster should be filled by Labour Day, not Valentines’ Day.

    * * *

    MacT brought some good players to the Oilers over the past wo seasons.
    If Tambo had brought half as many per year, no way the Oiers are drafting David McConnor

  35. Richard S.S. says:

    Why isn’t Craig MacTavish simply called Number Two. It solve job description.

  36. PDL says:

    I agree it makes sense for MacTavish to stay. Regain some credibility in an AGM role and then move on. Far less clear what the Oilers gain. Maybe MacTavish is scouting the Habs – Bolts series, this Petry UFA looks good…….

  37. Lowetide says:

    Richard S.S.:
    Lowetide,

    Yes, The Jason Gregor Show has a podcast available which downloads four hours of his show.You can set the podcast to check for it every hour to once a month, whatever your choice.Time to get a Smartphone or life passes you by.

    Thanks for the info.

  38. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    MacT brought some good players to the Oilers over the past wo seasons.
    If Tambo had brought half as many per year, no way the Oiers are drafting David McConnor

    MacT brought in good and bad. Net of everything, two years in, the team finished worse than it did before he took over from Tambo. A lot of activity > no activity only if it improves the team. MacT left the forwards better but the defense much worse.

  39. rich says:

    I want to think that LT has it surrounded, but as always, Oilers.

    Keeping MacT and Howson makes a lot of sense when you consider that you can’t bring any of the people over that you trust. You’re in an extremely important period where you still have a chance to scout new prospects and watch some of your current ones in the AHL. To do that effectively and then have to hire a new group of scouts/managers and a coach is a lot of work.

    It can be done certainly, but it adds more pressure.

    Better then to compare what the new org is saying about prospects – against what your own people have been telling you and then make judgments and changes. There’ll be a lot of time after the draft and guys available that you can rely on.

    While I would still prefer MacT and Howson to be out given their track record – and fear that keeping the two of them is not good as they’ve shown they’re not up to the job, perhaps they can still help in lesser roles.

    I would suggest that one of the things that might be a good sign would be if we stop reading about what the Oilers are going to do ahead of time from Matty. I hope Chia tells MacT the value of saying less – and being opaque with the media instead of being an open book. Guessing that MacT must have missed that when he was doing his MBA study.

  40. godot10 says:

    Магия 10:
    “He’ll be No. 2 in all aspects.”

    Tiier 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    Chiarelli must read Lowetide. I called MacT “Thing #2” yesterday.

  41. cabbiesmacker says:

    This declaration reads like some kind of bad joke. OIlers just keep on setting benchmarks for stupidity.

    If Babcock had any thoughts of considering Edmonton I’d bet this announcement tempers his enthusiasm.

    “soooo you fired your joke of a GM…buuutttt…..he’s still around with some influence.”

    Katz must love spending dollars on bloated management teams and of course he can’t let any of his heros from the past hit the unemployment line.

  42. cabbiesmacker says:

    Showerhead: I take it the same way. If you keep him at all, you keep him for a calendar year – give or take an imbecilic or inspired action on the part of MacT.

    Like most of the things he said and did during his GM tenure then?

  43. Richard S.S. says:

    Were either of the Goalies average last year, because I think not.? With average Goaltending last year, where does this Team finish? Not drafting McDavid.

    Because the GMs were so underachieving these past years, the Team has McDavid, Draisaitl, Nurse, Marincin, Klefbom, Hall, Nugent Hopkins, Yakupov just to name a few. Imagine how much worse the Team might be if the GMs were good enough to be average……competing for, but failing to get a playoff spot year after year like the Leafs.

    I’ve been an Oiler fan since before they were in the NHL. No other NHL Team is of interest.

  44. Kitchener says:

    This image might have been more appropriate for the post: No. 2

  45. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Richard S.S.:
    Were either of the Goalies average last year, because I think not.?With average Goaltending last year, where does this Team finish?Not drafting McDavid.

    Because the GMs were so underachieving these past years, the Team has McDavid, Draisaitl, Nurse, Marincin, Klefbom, Hall, Nugent Hopkins, Yakupov just to name a few.Imagine how much worse the Team might be if the GMs were good enough to be average……competing for, but failing to get a playoff spot year after year like the Leafs.

    I’ve been an Oiler fan since before they were in the NHL. No other NHL Team is of interest.

    With average goaltending this team still would have finished bottom 5. I did the math near the end of the season. Let me re-run it.

  46. G Money says:

    So have we officially gone from “MacT was a good coach, knowledgeable hockey man, passionate Oiler in over his head as a rookie GM trying to rebuild a shitty team” to “MacT is a useless imbecile who can’t possibly contribute anything worthwhile”?

    Sorry, I’m not on board with that.

  47. G Money says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”: With average goaltending this team still would have finished bottom 5. I did the math near the end of the season. Let me re-run it.

    Yeah, please do, that doesn’t sound right to me. I’ve done those numbers in my head and as I recall, it seemed to me it made a pretty large difference. Then again, my head is not the nimble, multiply mega-digits and estimations machine it was in my yute.

  48. Hammers says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Dahoosman,

    It makes sense for MacT. No one in the NHL was going to give him a better job at this time. Does it make sense for the Oilers? Tome, in the sense of continuity it does, but otherwise I’m not so sure. Team was worse after MacT than before him.

    Your opinion

  49. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Oilers had 198 GF (yikes) vs 283 GA (I see 266 GA on the Oilers goalies according to team website so that’s 17 empty net goals against?).

    A .914 save percentage gets them to 229 GA. Goal differential of -31. That puts them just ahead of Jersey at 24th in the league. So by end of season that improved a bit, but they were bottom 25th percentile.

    This team will be better next year because it just will with McDavid allowing everyone else more breathing room, but there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done (and actually need that league average goal tending).

  50. Ryan says:

    G Money: Yeah, please do, that doesn’t sound right to me.I’ve done those numbers in my head and as I recall, it seemed to me it made a pretty large difference.Then again, my head is not the nimble, multiply mega-digits and estimations machine it was in my yute.

    It’s not so much about Mact as it’s been this organization’s philosophy of keeping dead weight around rather than cutting ties. To date, it hasn’t proven to be a winning strategy,

  51. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Hammers,

    My opinion what? The standings speak for themselves.

    If you’re talking about no one handing MacT a GM job this summer, yes, my opinion.

  52. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    G Money:
    So have we officially gone from “MacT was a good coach, knowledgeable hockey man, passionate Oiler in over his head as a rookie GM trying to rebuild a shitty team” to “MacT is a useless imbecile who can’t possibly contribute anything worthwhile”?

    Sorry, I’m not on board with that.

    No. I haven’t gone there. MacT tried, is reasonably smart, but was in over his head. He opened his mouth too much on occasion, and his handling of the defense was terrible. But he made some smart moves at the draft, and he made some nice acquisitions up front.

    In the prior thread, I called it a wash in terms of what he did (nice forwards added vs weak D), but the Eakins experiment and whatever else landed the Oilers in the basement again.

    As others have said, it’s not so much about MacT himself as are the Oilers serious about changing the culture and cleaning house or not. If Chia still calls the shots and is going to be assertive enough to have the final say, then it’s ok, but it does seem very Oilers to add another guy to management but no one gets fired.

  53. G Money says:

    Ryan: It’s not so much about Mact as it’s been this organization’s philosophy of keeping dead weight around rather than cutting ties. To date, it hasn’t proven to be a winning strategy,

    a. sample size is tiny

    b. cutting ties has not proven to be a winning strategy either

    So the key, like any organization, is not whether or you cut ties or keep people, but whether you have the right people in the right roles.

    MacT as a rookie GM reporting to Kevin Lowe was a risk taken on a smart hockey man, and one that failed miserably.

    Conversely, I am completely comfortable with MacT as an AGM (or whatever), now with two years of exceedingly painful GM experience, to Chiarelli and working for Bob Nicholson.

  54. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Finally, to add. My opinion or not is irrelevant. As Woodguy said, MacT is no longer in charge because the only people’s opinions who matter deemed he wasn’t good enough for the post.

    That’s it in a nutshell. Could he make a good #2? Quite possibly. Some housekeeping would seem to be in order at some point, and for MacT it could make for a nice apprenticeship and he could add value with the draft and with scouting for 6s and 7s and 9s up front. Just keep him away from the D, please.

  55. Lowetide says:

    G Money:
    So have we officially gone from “MacT was a good coach, knowledgeable hockey man, passionate Oiler in over his head as a rookie GM trying to rebuild a shitty team” to “MacT is a useless imbecile who can’t possibly contribute anything worthwhile”?

    Sorry, I’m not on board with that.

    Not at all. MacT is a smart guy no doubt and really the F’s are a smart looking group. Chiarelli sees value in keeping him, that’s cool. Suspect Chiarelli will tweak as we go and for me it’s absolutely fair to wonder about the wisdom of keeping the same people.

  56. SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAint'sSo! says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    See these numbers are missing something. I remember a game back in October against the Canucks. The game ended 5-3 Canucks with an empty netter I believe. The numbers definitely make a team look bad but they miss a huge part of that game. Scrivens was directly responsible for three of those goals via giveaways when trying to play the puck. One pass was directly on Derek Dorsetts stick as Nikitin had to look over his shoulder in horror at the giveaway.

    There were so damn many of these plays this year with Ben and Vic in the net. Like my god they were the two worst goalies in the league! It was horrible, the number of games that the Oilers were close in that were lost because they couldn’t squeeze an arm, or couldn’t play the puck behind the net were just mind boggling. These guys sunk this ship. Full stop.

    I think with league average goaltending this team plays with a tiny amount of confidence. They aren’t looking over their shoulders with every single shot.

    Find a decent NHL goalie and sign him

  57. Henry says:

    frjohnk:
    Even though Im not thrilled about some of the bets MacT had as GM, Im happy he is still around.

    Exactly so.

  58. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAint’sSo!,

    I don’t disagree with you at all. There isn’t a number I can assign to “playing with confidence” though. Just saying where a .914 sv percentage would have taken this team.

    I absolutely think we need a goalie this summer. That’s priority number one as far as my opinion is concerned. However, I think that’s not enough. A bona fide goalie, two bonafide D, and then a veteran 2/3C and then a depth/checking forward, in that order of importance, are the priorities, I think.

  59. Dashingsilverfox says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAint’sSo!,

    I don’t disagree with you at all. There isn’t a number I can assign to “playing with confidence” though. Just saying where a .914 sv percentage would have taken this team.

    I absolutely think we need a goalie this summer. That’s priority number one as far as my opinion is concerned. However, I think that’s not enough. A bona fide goalie, two bonafide D, and then a veteran 2/3C and then a depth/checking forward, in that order of importance, are the priorities, I think.

    Exactly what was needed last offseason, the one before that and…..

  60. Hammers says:

    Richard S.S.:
    Were either of the Goalies average last year, because I think not.?With average Goaltending last year, where does this Team finish?Not drafting McDavid.

    Because the GMs were so underachieving these past years, the Team has McDavid, Draisaitl, Nurse, Marincin, Klefbom, Hall, Nugent Hopkins, Yakupov just to name a few.Imagine how much worse the Team might be if the GMs were good enough to be average……competing for, but failing to get a playoff spot year after year like the Leafs.

    I’ve been an Oiler fan since before they were in the NHL. No other NHL Team is of interest.

    Let’s not forget owners or at least Edmontons ownership . I love reading idiots comments when it’s obvious this owner made many decisions that are credited to management and coaching but so many can’t see the forest for the trees . This owner sat back let his people start building then stepped in when he thinks the timing is right . Do you think it’s coincidence this is all starting to take place a year before the new Home is ready . Like you been buying tickets since before the NHL Oilers . Katz is a smart man and he is behind all of this . I give him credit when it’s due

  61. Dashingsilverfox says:

    Hammers: Let’s not forget owners or at least Edmontons ownership . I love reading idiots comments when it’s obvious this owner made many decisions that are credited to management and coaching but so many can’t see the forest for the trees . This owner sat back let his people start building then stepped in when he thinks the timing is right . Do you think it’s coincidence this is all starting to take place a year before the new Home is ready . Like you been buying tickets since before the NHL Oilers . Katz is a smart man and he is behind all of this . I give him credit when it’s due

    I can’t think of one good reason why Katz wouldn’t have stepped in earlier…unless he would prefer to forego playoff revenue.

  62. GCW_69 says:

    Just when things were going so well.

    Dark fucking day knowing those two clowns are still around.

  63. GCW_69 says:

    G Money:
    So have we officially gone from “MacT was a good coach, knowledgeable hockey man, passionate Oiler in over his head as a rookie GM trying to rebuild a shitty team” to “MacT is a useless imbecile who can’t possibly contribute anything worthwhile”?

    Fire them all to be safe.

    MacT has made such glaringly bad decisions I don’t want Chiarelli to have to waste his time trying to find nuggets amongst the crap. Best thing is to move on.

  64. G Money says:

    GCW_69,

    We’ll have to agree to disagree. The idea that because MacT was a poor GM in his first two years at the job means he can’t contribute anything valuable is, frankly, ridiculous.

    There’s a certain mindset, I call it the “C&B poison-coloured glasses” that makes people unable to see the world in anything but black and white. As far as I can tell, they then personalize their assessment of hockey people in a certain role into an active dislike of the human being (you with MacT, Godot with Eakins) and so unable to apply any higher faculties and attribute anything positive.

    Retroactively, it’s just all bad all the time, reality and hard data be damned.

    It’s childish, churlish, and tiresome to be honest. I see it in my 10-year-old when he’s in a bad mood. I’m surprised – perhaps I shouldn’t be – when I see it here.

  65. Dashingsilverfox says:

    G Money:
    GCW_69,

    We’ll have to agree to disagree.The idea that because MacT was a poor GM in his first two years at the job means he can’t contribute anything valuable is, frankly, ridiculous.

    There’s a certain mindset, I call it the “C&B poison-coloured glasses” that makes people unable to see the world in anything but black and white.As far as I can tell, they then personalize their assessment of hockey people in a certain role into an active dislike of the human being (you with MacT, Godot with Eakins) and so unable to apply any higher faculties and attribute anything positive.

    Retroactively, it’s just all bad all the time, reality and hard data be damned.

    It’s childish, churlish, and tiresome to be honest.I see it in my 10-year-old when he’s in a bad mood.I’m surprised – perhaps I shouldn’t be – when I see it here.

    The “hard data” doesn’t support your argument. At. All.

    Your defense of the indefensible is the kind of thinking that led the Oilers to be the worst franchise in pro sports for the last decade.

    Anyone who has had a passing interest in NHL hockey could contribute something of value.

    I’m sure Steve Tambellini could too. But then he wasn’t one of the BOTB.

    The cronyism continues unabated.

  66. Wolfie says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAint’sSo!,

    I don’t disagree with you at all. There isn’t a number I can assign to “playing with confidence” though. Just saying where a .914 sv percentage would have taken this team.

    I absolutely think we need a goalie this summer. That’s priority number one as far as my opinion is concerned. However, I think that’s not enough. A bona fide goalie, two bonafide D, and then a veteran 2/3C and then a depth/checking forward, in that order of importance, are the priorities, I think.

    Ok, I’m going to have a little rant… I may be partial because I have toiled between the pipes my entire hockey life.

    The goalie isn’t the problem. The goaltending hasn’t been very good. I will concede that. But it has little to do with the guy in net.

    After witnessing Scrivens’ decline since joining the Oilers and Dubnyk’s ascent… How can anyone seriously consider replacing Scrivens before addressing a) the blueline and b) a team that can’t defend a lick.

    Watching Scrivens come in last year and play pretty darn well to start only to have things erode towards the end of last year. Then have things continue to crater this year tells me his confidence is in the toilet.

    I don’t want to hear chicken and egg stories about the players not having confidence in their goalie to make a stop. The real problem is the fact the goalie has ZERO confidence in his teammates to be able to defend and know their assignments. The constant distraction of worrying whether or not your mates will do their job wears in a goalie. There is no other position like a hockey goalie in all of sport. It requires an extremely high level of concentration. A goalie can overcome his teammates failings if he is in the zone and extremely focused. However, if a puck gets by him even after he made a superhuman effort, the doubt in his teammates will start to creep in. When that happens a goalie’s game will start to deteriorate. He starts to cheat and before he knows it he’s gone so far away from the fundamentals and basics that it’s hard to get it back.

    Devan Dubnyk has found his way back because he has trust in his team. Dubnyk and Scrivens have similar career numbers in their development. Before Scrivens arrived in Edmonton he had confidence and it showed early. Dubnyk was a beaten man when he left. He was almost out of the game entirely. He got a vote of confidence in Arizona and has continued his strong play.

    Now, I’m not sure you can continue with Scrivens. I’m not sure the Oilers can take a chance on him regaining his form. But for the love of Gord….

    It’s not the goalie.

  67. Магия 10 says:

    G Money: As far as I can tell, they then personalize their assessment of hockey people in a certain role into an active dislike of the human being (you with MacT, Godot with Eakins) and so unable to apply any higher faculties and attribute anything positive

    When people get like that it’s hard to get them to see things as they are. You have to cut out all the cancer especially Hall.

  68. LadiesloveSmid says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Oilers had 198 GF (yikes) vs 283 GA (I see 266 GA on the Oilers goalies according to team website so that’s 17 empty net goals against?).

    A .914 save percentage gets them to 229 GA. Goal differential of -31. That puts them just ahead of Jersey at 24th in the league. So by end of season that improved a bit, but they were bottom 25th percentile.

    This team will be better next year because it just will with McDavid allowing everyone else more breathing room, but there’s still a lot of work that needs to be done (and actually need that league average goal tending).

    Gotta wonder how confidence comes into play, and management sold off two pretty key pieces after goaltending sunk the team early on (Petry/Perron). Hall out for 30 games, Pouliot 25.

    If Chia brings in a goalie, 2D, and maybe a vet C/W this summer (and health is better) I see climbing out of the bottom 10

  69. admiralmark says:

    So if Howson has a good eye as Chiarelli says and MacT is a valuable person to keep as his eyes and ears in all areas… Who the hell came up with Nikitin/Ference/Schultz?? I mean someone’s responsible arent they? This is a poor move in my mind.

  70. G Money says:

    Wolfie,

    IT. IS. THE. FUCKING. GOALIE.

    Did you not watch the games?

    How many easy goals from the blue line can you blame on the D?

    How many giveaways from abysmal handling of the puck can you blame on the D?

    When you can explain to me why Scrivens and Fasth can have a decent save percentage on the hardest shots, but HORRIBLE (LEAGUE WORST) percentages on easy shots, then you can blame the D.

    When you can explain to me why the Avalanche can have top rank goaltending and the Sabres can have league average goaltending while playing with a defense that is markedly worse than the Oilers by EVERY POSSIBLE MEASURE WE HAVE OR CAN FIND (by eye, by shot, by chance), then you can blame the D.

  71. Dashingsilverfox says:

    admiralmark:
    So if Howson has a good eye as Chiarelli says and MacT is a valuable person to keep as his eyes and ears in all areas… Who the hell came up with Nikitin/Ference/Schultz?? I mean someone’s responsible arent they? This is a poor move in my mind.

    MacT and Howson had two seasons to improve the team and actually made it worse.

    Considering how bad the team was at the start of their mandate, that is an almost an impossible task but they accomplished it nonetheless.

  72. Bobbin Roundlee says:

    I predicted MacT staying a few days ago.

    Chiarelli is going to GROOM MacT to take over in a few years time. The Boys on the Bus is not yet dead.

    Is Chiarelli being 100% honest when he says that he values Howson and MacT’s keen eyes? I sincerely doubt it. This is walking a fine line between pissing off the boss and accomplishing what he was hired to do, make the Oilers a winner again.

    No way in hell that Chiarelli believes it when the Oil keep the future Norris trophy winner and Nikitin while the awful defenceman Jeff Petry makes it to the second round of the playoffs and plays an important part on the powerplay with PK Suban.

    This is politics plain and simple. Pacify Katz while trying to do your job. We’ve all been witness to nepotism where we work. I have seen a few publishers over the years add family members to the rank and file and it almost always is a disaster.

  73. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Wolfie,

    I played one game in goal and had no clue. I played RW so I’m going to defer to you on this. There’s a lot of problems with the team, my original point was that just getting a league average save percentage won’t pull this team out of lottery territory. The D needs fixing for sure. So I don’t think we are that far off in our views. I was responding to the argument that my just using save percentage doesn’t account for the players’ confidence levels.

    Then we got to the vice versa being true as you pointed out. Goalie and two bona fide D. That’s my ask for this summer.

  74. G Money says:

    Dashingsilverfox,

    Oh, yes, you’re right.

    MacT has no knowledge of the game, having achieved nothing at any level. Every move he made of course turned out badly, not one worked. Clearly he’s an idiot.

    Eakins clearly achieved nothing of value, since his team lost every game they played. In fact, none of his teams at any level ever won a game. The worst coach ever in the history of hockey.

    I defer to your titanic hockey insights and your clear and objective assessment of everything Oilers.

  75. cabbiesmacker says:

    I’m surprised there weren’t 29 other teams lined up to get MacTavish when he lost the GM chair just like there was when he was booted from behind the bench.

    Oh wait. That was the Lord of the Rings talking.

    What other franchise keeps their alumni around year after dismal, underachieving year like this one does?

    #1 is allowed to insult hockey fans in this city with no repercussions. #2 can fire people via skype, hire a useless replacement, make Bold and groundless statements about Norris candidates, etc etc etc.

    I swear you can’t write this stuff but it happens for real in Edmonton several times a year. This stuff has to go all the way to the top. There is no other explanation. It’s like the guy has an endless source of cheap drugs or something.

  76. sliderule says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    I used a save percentage of .914 and I came up with 211 goals against .

    This is a difference of 55 goals.

    Where did I go wrong in my calculation.

  77. Dashingsilverfox says:

    G Money:
    Dashingsilverfox,

    Oh, yes, you’re right.

    MacT has no knowledge of the game, having achieved nothing at any level.Every move he made of course turned out badly, not one worked.Clearly he’s an idiot.

    Eakins clearly achieved nothing of value, since his team lost every game they played.In fact, none of his teams at any level ever won a game.The worst coach ever in the history of hockey.

    I defer to your titanic hockey insights and your clear and objective assessment of everything Oilers.

    That’s a lot of straw men in one post.

    Carry on.

  78. godot10 says:

    There is no white in a dementor, only black.

  79. Dashingsilverfox says:

    cabbiesmacker:
    I’m surprised there weren’t 29 other teams lined up to get MacTavish when he lost the GM chair just like there was when he was booted from behind the bench.

    Oh wait. That was the Lord of the Rings talking.

    What other franchise keeps their alumni around year after dismal, underachieving year like this one does?

    #1 is allowed to insult hockey fans in this city with no repercussions. #2 can fire people via skype, hire a useless replacement, make Bold and groundless statements about Norris candidates, etc etc etc.

    I swear you can’t write this stuff but it happens for real in Edmonton several times a year. This stuff has to go all the way to the top. There is no other explanation. It’s like the guy has an endless source of cheap drugs or something.

    My best guess is that Katz asked Chiarelli to find “something” for MacT since there was almost no chance any other organization would hire him.

    Chiarelli likely was willing to yield on that issue since he had already won the battle to punt Lowe out of hockey ops.

    If Howson and Buchberger are still part of the organization after July 1st, it’s likely Chiarelli will be a paper tiger.

    Considering Chiarelli’s endorsement of Howson today, I’m not optimistic.

    We wait.

  80. G Money says:

    Just for gits and shiggles, I looked at the LT thread for the very first game of the season.

    General commentary themes:
    a. utter Oiler domination. After two periods, best Oiler fw Nuge at 86% CF, worst Drai at 53%.
    b. migod Scrivens is terrible.
    c. how could you let the Flames outwork you in the third?!

    Interesting how some of those themes played out over the course of the season. Guess if Scrivy’s bad season was because he ‘lost his confidence in the D’, then apparently he lost it in the first period playing in front of a team that was thoroughly dominating the other side in the very first game of the season.

    Midwayish through the second period, I posted this:

    I’m pretty concerned about Scrivens’ sv% at .714 and Hall/Nuge/Eberle without a point. At this rate, they’ll finish the season as a. the worst goalie ever, and b. no points for the top line. And that’s not good.

    Worst goalie ever? Missed it by () that much!

    Apparently, I am to blame for Scrivens’ performance this season.

  81. theres oil in virginia says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Think that’s it right there.

    Chia can’t go scorched Earth just before the draft and July 1. He sees some lieutenants who knows the organization. He can use them for a while before bringing his own guys in.

    That said, I think as Kinger said, having Chia, MacT, Howson is a case of too many head chefs in one kitchen. It also looks eerily similar to bringing in a new head coach but insisting he keeps the existing assistants. Maybe Chiarelli is unaware of that situation but for Oiler fans, a clean break is probably the best thing.

    Groupthink with all these GMs is dangerous. I hope 1) this is Chiarelli’s decision 100% and 2) this is a temporary situation

    “Groupthink” and “Too many cooks in the kitchen” are opposing concepts.

    MacT did not succeed as a GM, but he did some nice things and Chiarelli has obviously recognized the value of keeping him around. If MacT wants to be a GM somewhere, then this is temporary. If he wants to be a part of a successful Oilers franchise, then I think he’ll be around for a while in some role or other.

  82. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    sliderule:
    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    I useda save percentage of .914 and I came up with 211 goals against.

    This is a difference of 55 goals.

    Where did I go wrong in my calculation.

    You’re not wrong. Just missing the 17 extra goals against which are emptynetters. You can make guesses about how many less empty netters there would have been but finger in the air unless you want to apply a. 914 to every single game and see what that yields.

  83. G Money says:

    sliderule,

    Depending on if you count EN and special teams goals or not, I came up with something similar (40 goals and 55 goals). But I used median sv% rather than mean sv%.

    If you take that and simply translate it to a goal differential, it confirms NYC’s comment earlier about a fairly modest overall change.

    That of course would require the assumption that a team letting in between 0.5 and 0.7 goals fewer per game would not be positively affected in any way in any other zone on the ice (which I think is not at all realistic).

  84. G Money says:

    godot10,

    Still broken, eh? I’m waiting for you, Godot, I’m waiting for you!

    What is to become of “Vladimir” Lowe and “Estragon” McTavish?

  85. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    G Money,

    Yep, the confidence thing is an intangible that is real and actual but can’t be measured in the numbers.

    Address goal and add two top 4 D. Everything else on top is gravy but addressing those three slots is going to take the team a long way up the road to respectability, and I absolutely do believe it is critical the team contends for the playoffs until at least March this coming year. No more Halloween elimination

  86. Dashingsilverfox says:

    theres oil in virginia: “Groupthink” and “Too many cooks in the kitchen” are opposing concepts.

    Not necessarily.

    If all the “cooks” think the same way.

    Chiarelli could certainly bring a fresh perspective, and I think all of us hope he does, but he came from a culture in Boston where the Good Old Boys ruled the day.

  87. sliderule says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    The 17 empty netters like you say bring the total goals against up to 283.
    I don’t believe the empty netters count as a shot against the goalie or a goal against.
    If you take all the shots against listed for oiler goalies and apply .914 save percentage it comes to 211 goals against.

  88. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    theres oil in virginia: “Groupthink” and “Too many cooks in the kitchen” are opposing concepts.

    Are they, though? If you watch behind the B, Chiarelli, Benning, the scouts and Neely use groupthink to arrive at a “consensus” on Seguin. But was it really consensus? To me it looked like Neely was trying to dictate the direction of the conversation. In another instance, Chiarelli was trying to dictate the decision to let Ference walk. It looked to me like groupthink consensus led to one decision, but various cooks were pulling the strings.

    I think that’s why Chia wanted clear autonomy vs. Lowe. To avoid the Neely situation. I don’t want these guys making consensus style groupthink decisions. If Chia was hired because he was the best let him be that. Let him listen to MacT but then say, no Craig, you’re wrong. This is why. And this is what we are going to do instead.

    Group debate is useful. But let the GM have the final say and overrule his lieutenants

    Are MacT and Howson going to be ok, given their past roles, with being listened to but overruled on a regular basis? If so, fine. If not there will be disharmony.

  89. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    sliderule:
    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    The 17 empty netters like you say bring the total goals against up to 283.
    I don’t believe the empty netters count as a shot against the goalie or a goal against.
    If you take all the shots against listed for oiler goalies and apply .914 save percentage it comes to 211 goals against.

    The emptynetters don’t count as a shot against the goalie.

    Oilers had 283 GA. 266 GA against the goalies. That number improves by 54 or 55 as you said for. 914
    That means 212 GA for the goalies. You can’t just make all the empty netters go away though. They did happen. Would some be gone as a result of the other goals against being less? Yes. But there’s no way of doing that unless you take a median save percentage of. 914 for every game including ones where they had a better save percentage and then working out what the score would have been. But then maybe there would be an OT goal against so who knows?

    Safest, most conservative assumption is to take the 212 goals against vs the goalies, keep 17 empty netters and the number is 198 vs 229, net -31 goal differential, 24th overall.

  90. G Money says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”: Yep, the confidence thing is an intangible that is real and actual but can’t be measured in the numbers.

    You know, now that I think about it, this would be a really interesting project to try and measure.

    It’s similar to how the #fancystat’ers discredited the idea of facepunchers creating ‘momentum’ or ‘energy’. It was pretty easy to do. The idea was just to look at the trend in shots for the losing team before and after a fight.

    Overall conclusion: shot metrics and goal scoring for the losing team were overall slightly worse after a fight. Conclusion: no ‘spark’ created.

    Or probably more likely, very occasionally it did at least appear that a spark was created, whether actual or coincidental, but more often than not it wasn’t. So the myth of the spark was from confirmation bias: the one time it did seem to spark the team is the one that you remember, but not the eighty four times it did nothing or made it worse.

    I suspect if someone were to go and identify (subjectively) say 50 “miraculous” saves, and pulled shot and goal trends for the 5 mins before and after that save, it would be very interesting to see if there is any discernible trend change.

  91. Kmart99 says:

    Keeping MacT is smart. He knows the team, and has plenty of useful knowledge. If PC happens to disagree with MacT’s evaluation of talent, he has the power to ignore it or remove it. Only possible downside is if PC agrees with a poor evaluation. Find out who was behind the Pouliot and Fayne signings, and perron trade keep that guy. Find out who was behind the Nikitin, Ference, signings… Consider removing him.

    It it’s the same guy, explosion.

  92. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    In other words, league average goaltending, without factoring in psychological effects, improves the Oilers’ goal differential by a lot, but the differential was so large to begin with that it’s still bottom 25% of the league.

    Goaltending is important but fixing that alone won’t fix this team. Let’s add two good blue and a goalie and if there’s money left add a vet C. See how that goes. It’s not a big list, but it’s a critical one.

  93. theres oil in virginia says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    Yes, they are opposing concepts, regardless of what happened in Boston.

    I agree with your read on the situation though, regarding what happened to Chiarelli in Boston and why he demanded what he did when he negotiated with Edmonton. (I think your post perfectly encapsulates this.) I think if MacT’s opinion is respected, then it’ll be fine. It looks to me like Chiarelli pushed to have him stay, which is an indication that it will be. In the end, it’s Chiarelli’s ass if things go wrong, so he’ll do what he thinks best.

    Anyway, it’s all moot as Hockey Jesus heals all wounds.

  94. Kmart99 says:

    G Money:
    Just for gits and shiggles, I looked at the LT thread for the very first game of the season.

    General commentary themes:
    a. utter Oiler domination.After two periods, best Oiler fw Nuge at 86% CF, worst Drai at 53%.
    b. migod Scrivens is terrible.
    c. how could you let the Flames outwork you in the third?!

    Interesting how some of those themes played out over the course of the season.Guess if Scrivy’s bad season was because he ‘lost his confidence in the D’, then apparently he lost it in the first period playing in front of a team that was thoroughly dominating the other side in the very first game of the season.

    Midwayish through the second period, I posted this:

    I’m pretty concerned about Scrivens’ sv% at .714 and Hall/Nuge/Eberle without a point. At this rate, they’ll finish the season as a. the worst goalie ever, and b. no points for the top line. And that’s not good.

    Worst goalie ever?Missed it by () that much!

    Apparently, I am to blame for Scrivens’ performance this season.

    Blame?!?? No blame… MCDAVIIIIIIID!!!!!

  95. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    theres oil in virginia,

    Ok fair enough. Agree with your take.

  96. Ice Sage says:

    Ok then.

    It seems that no one here has been recruited / hired to a senior position in a struggling organization?
    Or watched Game of Thrones? 😉

    Successful executives take time to mine insiders for key information (while taking any of their ‘advice’ with a jaundiced view) before dealing with them.

    Any talk of Chiarelli giving in to BOTB Oiler disease is just mischief at this point.

    PS – Dubie back to baseline?

  97. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    G Money,

    Yeah, would be interesting. Also to see the shot differentials 5 minutes after a so-called weak or soft or deflating goal allowed.

  98. Ducey says:

    Hendricks with a nice day. 2 goals, 1 assist, +4, 4 shots. Eichel 0 points, 1 shot.

    MacDavid WOOOOOOOOOT!

  99. gr8one says:

    Watching the Rockets/”Hawks game…Bowey just rocked someone right over the boards into the camera box. Awesome.

    On an unrelated note…is there a worse uniform in junior hockey than the Rockets? Awful color scheme, cartoonish character of Ogopogo which looks like a dragon. but they’re called the Rockets…just terrible.

  100. G Money says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”: Safest, most conservative assumption is to take the 212 goals against vs the goalies, keep 17 empty netters and the number is 198 vs 229, net -31 goal differential, 24th overall.

    Here’s my suggestion for getting a bead on what “should” have been.

    The site fourthlineheroes does a distance adjusted sv% calculation for all goalies (one of quite a few, but I like the fact that they provide the background info on how they calculate it).

    For example, Scrivens had a .897 sv%, but given the difficulty of shots he faced (distance based mind, so this is just an approximation), he SHOULD have delivered a .920 (if he had played like an average goalie).

    For Fasth, that number is .895 actual vs .914 adjusted (again, if he had played like an average goalie).

    If you take the shots faced by those two and use the “should have” sv%, you get a -12 differential for Fasth and a -34 differential for Scrivens.

    So the Oilers, by that measure, would have given up 46 fewer non-empty-net goals. Would that also reduce the number of EN goals? I would think so. But even ignoring that, 46 fewer goals is massive.

  101. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    G Money,

    So the simple math says 54 less goals. The fancier math says 46 less goals. Both massive, yes. But still leaves the Oilers with a 31 to 40 goal deficit. Take away half the empty netters, the goal differential is still bottom third or bottom quarter of the league. Does it make a difference? Yes. Does it take the Oil out of top ten pick territory? No.

    Can we agree on that? The goal differential will improve when the goalies improve but also the blue line. The current blue line is Auston Matthews territory. It needs two legit guys, not two more Aulie/Nikitin bottom of the order depth guys. That’s where the money should be spent. Be it a Hjalmarsson or Staal or Sekera or Martin or anyone else that can bat middle or the order and move everyone else into sheltered, easier roles. I think even a guy like Schultz would be serviceable if he were babysat at evens with a truly capable veteran.

  102. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Goes back to last summer. Not saying it was either or but so many people here identified Stralman correctly as the target. Instead we got Nikitin.

    Not saying there was a choice for sure and MacT chose Nikitin for certain over Stralman but it’s clear who is the better use of 4.5m.

    Hopefully Chia can bring the heft and credibility to nab those types of guys going forward.

  103. G Money says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    Absolutely. You and I are 100% in agreement and have been for a LOOOONG time that G and 2xD are an absolute necessity for this team (everything else, especially with McJesus on the way, is a luxury).

    I remain of the steadfast opinion, though, that reducing that 46 to 55 GA would have a positive effect at the other end of the ice, so the the achieved goal differential will be better than the raw calculation would suggest. It also has a follow on effect – remember, if the Oilers give up 46 to 55 fewer goals, that means OTHER teams have scored that many fewer, which worsens their goal differential by that same amount cumulatively. Most teams move down the list, in other words. And some day I will prove it!

  104. gr8one says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Goes back to last summer. Not saying it was either or but so many people here identified Stralman correctly as the target. Instead we got Nikitin.

    Not saying there was a choice for sure and MacT chose Nikitin for certain over Stralman but it’s clear who is the better use of 4.5m.

    Hopefully Chia can bring the heft and credibility to nab those types of guys going forward.

    I liked the MacT hire when it happened. I can even acknowledge the good things be s done, but just the thought of the Nikitin debscle just makes me angry. Not only did he overpay for a suspect D man, but her have up a draft pick for the right…when EVERYONE, even casual hockey fans knew better. And as you just so eloquently put it…using Stralman to juxtapose that point just makes me shake my head.

    And that’s not even the worst part….that being that even once it became clear it was a poor move MacT blindly could not admit to it.

  105. PunkInDrublic says:

    I like that MacT stayed on; I don’t like that he’s being referred to as “No. 2 in all aspects”. I would have preferred that Chiarelli leave the management positions open until mid-summer and just continue on with the people under contract until trades are underway, a few good UFA’s have been signed and he has more options (both in coaches and managerial staff).

    That said, I understand Chiarelli’s postion of not gutting the organization before what could be the most important draft for this team in the past ~20 years. He needs a management team to get him through the draft and initial stages of free-agency. Gutting this current group is not an option IMO. In three months or a year, sure, but not now.

  106. Dahoosman says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    It makes sense if you think Mac T has value to add to your group. I think he might, as long as you account for some blind spots.

  107. Ice Sage says:

    Babcock renouncing GM aspirations “I’m a coach, I gotta be close to the ice”

    The stars are indeed aligning

  108. Numenius says:

    Kelowna wins 2-1 in OT and goes ahead 3-2 in the series.

    Drai: 0-1-1.

  109. oilgreg says:

    Wolfie: Ok, I’m going to have a little rant…I may be partial because I have toiled between the pipes my entire hockey life.

    The goalie isn’t the problem.The goaltending hasn’t been very good.I will concede that.But it has little to do with the guy in net.

    After witnessing Scrivens’ decline since joining the Oilers and Dubnyk’s ascent… How can anyone seriously consider replacing Scrivens before addressing a) the blueline and b) a team that can’t defend a lick.

    Watching Scrivens come in last year and play pretty darn well to start only to have things erode towards the end of last year.Then have things continue to crater this year tells me his confidence is in the toilet.

    I don’t want to hear chicken and egg stories about the players not having confidence in their goalie to make a stop.The real problem is the fact the goalie has ZERO confidence in his teammates to be able to defend and know their assignments.The constant distraction of worrying whether or not your mates will do their job wears in a goalie.There is no other position like a hockey goalie in all of sport.It requires an extremely high level of concentration.A goalie can overcome his teammates failings if he is in the zone and extremely focused.However, if a puck gets by him even after he made a superhuman effort, the doubt in his teammates will start to creep in. When that happens a goalie’s game will start to deteriorate.He starts to cheat and before he knows it he’s gone so far away from the fundamentals and basics that it’s hard to get it back.

    Devan Dubnyk has found his way back because he has trust in his team.Dubnyk and Scrivens have similar career numbers in their development.Before Scrivens arrived in Edmonton he had confidence and it showed early.Dubnyk was a beaten man when he left.He was almost out of the game entirely.He got a vote of confidence in Arizona and has continued his strong play.

    Now, I’m not sure you can continue with Scrivens.I’m not sure the Oilers can take a chance on him regaining his form.But for the love of Gord….

    It’s not the goalie.

    I spent my time in the net as well, and I have to say that it was the goalie. I was there at game one. It was the goalie. I played for strong teams. I played for weak teams. That was fun. It did not matter about confidence in the defense. Job is to stop that round black disk. With weak teams, job is to stop
    a few more. It was the goalie. Too bad, too. He seems like a quality individual.

  110. Numenius says:

    I’m glad to hear MacT is staying on as #2. I think it’s a great scenario.

    He’s not in charge and so his blind spots shouldn’t be able to lead the team astray, while his many and unique strengths can still be a great help.

  111. oilgreg says:

    Dashingsilverfox: Or maybe it’s like getting married and having your new spouse’s ex move into the guest room.

    What could go wrong?

    That is a rather negative view of what many call a quality hockey move. A man with confidence builds a structure based on competence, and does not concern himself with personal dynamics.

  112. SwedishPoster says:

    Well Chia probably gives himself some extra honeymoon time with keeping MacT. Every bad move will be blamed on MacT and he’ll be credited with every good one, at least for a while. I don’t think that’s why he keeps him around, it’s likely a combo of having consistency, keeping the information gathered by previous management and actually thinking MacT is a good hockey mind. Personally I don’t think MacT was any good as GM, I also think he is arrogant at times and thinks he’s much better at his job than he actually is. Having said that I got the feeling his failures as GM had started to humble him and I did agree with his approach up to next year.

    Chiarelli has gone on record wanting full executive power on hockey issues, he clearly thinks keeping MacT is a good idea, if we believed in Chia to be the solution we can’t really give up on him or draw up conspiracies after his first move as GM.

  113. stush18 says:

    oilgreg: I spent my time in the net as well, and I have to say that it was the goalie. I was there at game one. It was the goalie.I played for strong teams. I played for weak teams. That was fun. It did not matter about confidence in the defense. Job is to stop that round black disk. With weak teams, job is to stop
    a few more. It was the goalie. Too bad, too. He seems like a quality individual.

    Id have to agree. My brother is a goalie and watching him while he grew up, he played on some awful teams, and some good teams.

    Whenever he played on the bad teams, he would get absolutely peppered.

    We dont seen that with scrivens. I may be wrong but i think the oilers faired a lot better this year in SA compared to other years.

  114. stush18 says:

    I dont want to get into an argument without using numbers to support anything, because it usually unravels into nonsense.

    But the oilers really need an identity. I mean a true top-bottom identity.

    Flames? Hardworking, fast, underdog role.
    Bruins? Kings? Blues? Winnipeg?Heavy hitting, forechecking, big bodied
    Tampa? Detroit? Fast puck moving

    Seriously i can think of a identity for the oilers other than trainwreck, undisciplined.

    Obviously the flames are riding percentages. And maybe the kings arent as heavy hitting as we believe.

    But successful teams play into there styles and identities and win because of it.

    If the oilers want to be a heavy team that plays the heavy west game, then ship out ebs and yak and bring in some hefty guys. If they want to be a highscoring fast moving team? Well get some damn puck overs.

    But whatever the direction, there needs to be a buy in where everyone believes in it. Winning some lucky games, getting confidence, that doesnt hurt. What changed with minnesota? Same coach, same message. Goalie comes in, stokes the fire, and next thing you know they rally. Toronto for example, has changed identities every year since mats left, and maybe before that.

  115. MightyOil1 says:

    Dashingsilverfox: My best guess is that Katz asked Chiarelli to find “something” for MacT since there was almost no chance any other organization would hire him.

    Chiarelli likely was willing to yield on that issue since he had already won the battle to punt Lowe out of hockey ops.

    If Howson and Buchberger are still part of the organization after July 1st, it’s likely Chiarelli will be a paper tiger.

    Considering Chiarelli’s endorsement of Howson today, I’m not optimistic.

    We wait.

    I fear this is the truth. I was so optimistic when Chia was hired but now that ALL of the OBC are still with the team I am getting disheartened. These guys are the worst management team in the history of hockey. With them still around they will hurt not help the progress. Remember, these guys needed D and chased Ference and Nikitan.

    I am not confident in Howsen or Mac T at all. They have not done anything to warrant confidence. It took a week but they have managed to take some of the wind out of my sails. Oh well….MCDAVID!!!!!!

  116. SwedishPoster says:

    On a completely different note. Klef and Lander got their WHC debuts out of the way last night. Neither player had a great game in an entertaining, crazy but very disorganized game. Sweden had zero structure other than for ten minutes to start the game, obvious the team hadn’t really played a lot together, the group stage will be all about finding a team game because that was fullly lacking.

    Klefbom looked nervous, had a few excellent moments but overall a bad game, OEL played rover quite a bit and didn’t have much of a game either until the last 5-10 minutes of the game which didn’t help Klefs cause, but he looked tense, his stickchecks was weaker than usual, his feet stopped moving at bad times and he handled the puck much worse than usual. Hopefully he just got the nerves out of the way.

    Lander was better but still barely average, worked hard on D but with mixed results, won a bunch of FOs but his line was completely disjointed and he had almost nothing going offensively looked ok playing the halfwall on the PP and gathered a 2nd assist on a PP goal.
    His line didn’t work at all, Loui Eriksson was absolutely awful and Filip Forsberg might have been worse, loked jetlagged and tried to do everything on his own, Forsberg said himself that he felt sorry for his linemates because he was so terrible. Lander was the best of the three but that’s not really saying much. Hopefully him and his line bounce back next game, Loui looks pretty spent as a player though.

  117. G Money says:

    Yes, we’re on the train to Babcock

    Aboard the Connor express

    We’ll pick up Chi along the way…

    We only stop for the best

  118. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Thought I’d pass this along. WHL drafted centres list. Draisaitl #1 ahead of Reinhart, Chase #8.

    http://www.hockeysfuture.com/articles/122639/draisaitl-reinhart-cream-nhl-drafted-center-crop-whl/

  119. PhrankLee says:

    G Money: So have we officially gone from “MacT was a good coach, knowledgeable hockey man, passionate Oiler in over his head as a rookie GM trying to rebuild a shitty team” to “MacT is a useless imbecile who can’t possibly contribute anything worthwhile”?
    Sorry, I’m not on board with that.

    Agreed. It will pay dividends for the club and MacT personally. He gets to display his commitment, passion and loyalty to the team after taking a very public kick in the huevos.

    The players under contract will be inspired. The UFA market will perk it’s ears up at the winds of change, humility and open-mindedness.

    He gets all kind of respect from me by staying.

    He also gets a chance to ride it out for a year and resurrect his GM career elsewhere once the bones of this last season begin to react with the lye.

    Takes one fall and one spring, imo.

    Likely Katz is behind it and he can be credited with cryo-saving MacT in about 2 years.

  120. Woodguy says:

    Dashingsilverfox:
    Interesting that Chiarelli thinks Ryan Johansen might be the best player in the 2010 draft.

    Which makes Tallon going off the board to take Gubranson at 3 that much worse.

  121. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Woodguy: Which makes Tallon going off the board to take Gubranson at 3 that much worse.

    It was a terrific first round. Bad picks: Florida Gudbranson at 3, Rangers Mcilrath at 12, Gormley at 13 (Schwartz went 14).

    You want goalie voodoo? Visentin at 27, Andersen at 187

  122. russ99 says:

    MacT was in over his head as GM but he had an adequate track record on acquisitions, so I’m a lot better with him staying than “Oiler Lifers” Howson and Gare who have more years and vastly worse track records.

    So as long as both are gone once Chiarelli can bring in his own guys and he realizes MacT ‘s advice on defenseman, goalie tandems and three scoring lines are to be taken with a large grain of salt, we’re good.

  123. Woodguy says:

    NYCOIL "Taking Photos": It was a terrific first round. Bad picks: Florida Gudbranson at 3, Rangers Mcilrath at 12, Gormley at 13 (Schwartz went 14).

    You want goalie voodoo?Visentin at 27, Andersen at 187

    Gormley is coming around and was ranked pre-draft much higher

  124. Woodguy says:

    NYCOIL "Taking Photos",

    You want goalie voodoo? Visentin at 27, Andersen at 187

    Jack Campbell at 11

  125. thejonrmcleod says:

    Woodguy: Which makes Tallon going off the board to take Gubranson at 3 that much worse.

    Zing!

  126. Marc says:

    Woodguy: Gormley is coming around and was ranked pre-draft much higher

    Forbort was a much worse pick than Gormley.

    Just 15 points in his second full season in the AHL

  127. sliderule says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    I checked the nhl stats and the oil only gave up 10 empty netters.The figures for ga on all the teams don’t add up so there are mystery goals.

    No matter ,you are right league average goal tending just gets them up to top of bottom third.

    Hard to believe with all those high picks they can’t score more.

    In Connor we trust.

  128. Yeti says:

    G Money: We’ll have to agree to disagree. The idea that because MacT was a poor GM in his first two years at the job means he can’t contribute anything valuable is, frankly, ridiculous.

    There’s a certain mindset, I call it the “C&B poison-coloured glasses” that makes people unable to see the world in anything but black and white. As far as I can tell, they then personalize their assessment of hockey people in a certain role into an active dislike of the human being (you with MacT, Godot with Eakins) and so unable to apply any higher faculties and attribute anything positive.

    It’s not about whether MacT has ‘anything to contribute’. I like his character, loved him as a coach. MacT has ‘stuff to contribute’. Some of it might be useful. There’s also a hundred other excellent hockey people who could have had ‘stuff to contribute’ too. But they are not buddies with the owner.

    The thing here is that there is clearly a masterplan that whatever happens, a select group are in this to the end. They are untouchable no matter what. Any evidence of failure, bad judgement, mismanagement, etc, and they will be perpetually shuffled around. Think of them as the undead. Just when you believe they are finally finished, they sprout a new head and keep on coming. We’re beyond nine lives here.

    So. Does MacT have something to contribute? Probably. Might there be a better choice out there? We never know because competitive interviewing and selection is secondary to cronyism. The best interests of the team are second to the best interests of a clan. That’s the issue, no matter how you sugar coat it.

  129. Hammers says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Hammers,

    My opinion what? The standings speak for themselves.

    If you’re talking about no one handing MacT a GM job this summer, yes, my opinion.

    So you think building a team is done in a couple of years . Then Vancouver and many others must be doing everything wrong Standings is what you get to through a period of time . Build it and they will come. Oh yea sounds like McT is his right hand man so some people that run things see more than today’s standings.

  130. Hammers says:

    Dashingsilverfox: I can’t think of one good reason why Katz wouldn’t have stepped in earlier…unless he would prefer to forego playoff revenue.

    Yea I gues his broke , needs the money . Something tells me his smarter than that.

  131. commonfan14 says:

    Marc,

    You must be mistaken. I have it on good authority that the Oilers were morons for not getting him in the Penner trade.

  132. Hammers says:

    Dahoosman:
    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”,

    It makes sense if you think Mac T has value to add to your group.I think he might, as long as you account for some blind spots.

    Agree and when you mention it , don’t we all have some blind spots . Biggest problem seems to come from those who profess to having all the answers . That’s life I guess .

  133. gr8one says:

    Yeti: It’s not about whether MacT has ‘anything to contribute’. I like his character, loved him as a coach. MacT has ‘stuff to contribute’. Some of it might be useful. There’s also a hundred other excellent hockey people who could have had ‘stuff to contribute’ too. But they are not buddies with the owner.

    The thing here is that there is clearly a masterplan that whatever happens, a select group are in this to the end. They are untouchable no matter what. Any evidence of failure, bad judgement, mismanagement, etc, and they will be perpetually shuffled around. Think of them as the undead. Just when you think they are finally finished, they sprout a new head and keep on coming. We’re beyond nine lives here.

    So. Does MacT have something to contribute? Probably. Might there be a better choice out there? We never know because competitive interviewing and selection is secondary to cronyism. The best interests of the team are second to the best interests of a clan. That’s the issue, no matter how you sugar coat it.

    This.

  134. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Hammers: So you think building a team is done in a couple of years . Then Vancouver and many others mustbe doing everything wrongStandings is what you get to through a period of time . Build it and they will come. Oh yea sounds like McT is his right hand man so some people that run things see more than today’s standings.

    Putting words in my mouth now? When did I say MacT was done what he was doing? Please show me. What does Vancouver have to do with anything I said, for that matter. Also, what’s the “Field of Dreams” quote for anyway? I’m not sure what’s gotten you in a foul mood here and lashing out in this manner (not used to seeing this from you), but my argument is centered around the fact that MacT improved the forwards, he improved the drafting (for the most part), and he made a reasonable bet on goaltending that failed miserably, and he did horribly with the defense. He also chose a coach that didn’t work out and the result was a team that drafted 3rd overall and 1st overall under his watch. It’s not like he didn’t turn over the roster significantly, either.

    Just about everyone here was worried about the blue line, but more impprtantly, centre going into this year. We were proved right to be concerned.

    Did MacT do some good? Yes. But in two years he did a lot of bad, too, and showed no indication he realized he made a mistake on the centres and signings like Nikitin. He also wanted to run with a similar blue line next year, according to his end of year press availability. That simply isn’t good enough and that’s why he got demoted.

    As for MacT staying on board, all I said was that it is very much up for debate whether this is a good thing or not. I never said it was horrible and he should be gone at all costs. I do think the Oilers do need to cull some of the management herd at some point, but I absolutely understand the need to keep some people on for continuity purposes for the medium term.

    Now, could you please articulate what your issues are with these viewpoints rather than throwing out generic quotes and comments about other teams that have nothing to do with the Oilers?

  135. Mr DeBakey says:

    sliderule: I checked the nhl stats and the oil only gave up 10 empty netters.The figures for ga on all the teams don’t add up so there are mystery goals.

    Winning Shoot-out goals?

  136. Woodguy says:

    I just hope Chia looks at MacT’s failures as a GM and know which advice to heed and which to ignore.

    I think he’s pretty sharp and trust it.

  137. Woodguy says:

    Mr DeBakey: Winning Shoot-out goals?

    Good catch, that’s a part of it.

    NHL attributes a GF and GA for shoot out teams, but not actually attribute a goal for or against to any player.

    Oilers were 5-7 in SO in the past year.

  138. Woodguy says:

    Archive of McKenzie’s lists.

    http://www2.tsn.ca/draftcentre/feature/?id=7066

    Hmmmmmmm, Gormley was ranked 3rd?

    I remember Fowler being ranked 3rd?

  139. NYCOIL "Taking Photos" says:

    Woodguy: Good catch, that’s a part of it.

    NHL attributes a GF and GA for shoot out teams, but not actually attribute a goal for or against to any player.

    Oilers were 5-7 in SO in the past year.

    Was that always the case? I thought SO winning goals did not count either way as goals in the standings.

    If that’s right, then the Oilers were
    193 (-5) GF, 276 GA (-7), 10 EN GA
    .914 sv pct means 193 GF, 222 GA (10 EN GA), for -29 goal differential. Let’s be kind to the Oil and take away half the empty net goals and call it -24 goal differential with league average .914 goaltending. Still doesn’t change that that’s good for 24th in the league, just ahead of New Jersey and behind Philly at -19 who are 23rd in the league. Still in the bottom quarter of the league.

    Would an average goaltender help? Absolutely. Would a good goaltender help a lot? Yes. Is that alone enough to talk about playoffs? Nope. Still need help on a very thin blue line.

  140. frjohnk says:

    NYCOIL “Taking Photos”:
    Thought I’d pass this along. WHL drafted centres list. Draisaitl #1 ahead of Reinhart, Chase #8.

    http://www.hockeysfuture.com/articles/122639/draisaitl-reinhart-cream-nhl-drafted-center-crop-whl/

    Great, now it looks like we will have too much depth at center.

  141. G Money says:

    Yeti: So. Does MacT have something to contribute? Probably. Might there be a better choice out there? We never know because competitive interviewing and selection is secondary to cronyism. The best interests of the team are second to the best interests of a clan. That’s the issue, no matter how you sugar coat it.

    You think it works differently anywhere else in business? It doesn’t. The classic “who you know, not what you know” applies everywhere.

    That said, I will draw your attention to another delightful dysfunction that, as a technology guy in the 80s and 90s, I got to witness on a regular basis from tech companies, here and in Sillycon Valley.

    1. Tech companies would put new staff through intensive training and apprenticeship programs for typically two years, then move them from trainee positions into positions of full responsibility – but refuse to promote them or give them salary raises commensurate with the change.

    Other smaller (smarter) companies therefore built entire business models on hiring those developers. Give them a modest raise over what the incumbents were offering and you had an almost unlimited supply of trained developers who were over the two year trainee hump, ready and able to contribute – and you didn’t have to invest a dollar or a an hour of reduced productivity getting them there.

    Moral of the story 1: someone with two years of on-the-job training is an entirely different animal from a rookie.
    Moral of the story 2: failure to recognize this creates an inefficiency that smart people can exploit.

    2. These companies would also regularly promote their best developers – the ones with technical capability out the wazoo – and eventually move them into management positions. Because that’s the way you recognize employee contributions, you promote them.

    The problem is, the result was that you move someone into a role for which they are utterly unqualified and didn’t enjoy. The vast majority of these folks were unsurprisingly terrible at management, and crashed and burned in a big way as a result. Many got fired.

    And now you had a brilliant programmer on the street, waiting to be scooped up by someone willing to recognize technical excellence and managerial incompetence are the rule, not the norm.

    Moral of the story 1: otherwise highly capable people will crash and burn if you put them in roles above their head. This is as true of employees as it is for players on the ice.
    Moral of the story 2: smart managers and businesses recognize that its not just about people or roles, its finding the right people for the right role.
    Moral of the story 3: businesses that fail to recognize this create an inefficiency that smart people can exploit.

    Moral of the story for the Oilers: the mistake is not in keeping MacT now that he’s been through his two year trainee period. It was hiring him in the first place. But firing him now because of stupid and arbitrary assumptions like ‘fire them all’ or ‘they’re all poison’ is more likely to be a stupid act, not a smart one.

    On a side note, the assumption seems to be that the only reason MacT is around is because of Katz’s loyalty to him and the OBC. This is contradicted by the fact that MacT was fired by the organization in 2009. Katz’s demonstrated loyalty is to Lowe. And Lowe is no longer part of the hockey-related org chart.

    As far as I can tell, Chia appears to be an intelligent and experienced hockey manager. He’s no doubt talked to each of the individuals in the organization and concluded that they may indeed have something valuable to offer, including experience with the organization.

    Given that he’s smart, he’s doing the first smart thing, which is keeping the incumbents but finding new, better suited, roles for them.

    The second smart thing he’ll do, and I fully expect this will happen, is that he will be assessing their performance in those roles. Some will excel. Some, maybe all, will not, and they will then be moved out and replaced with better people (in Chia’s assessment).

    This is all consistent with the behaviour of smart and successful organizations.

    Those braying for blood are confusing the pre-existing behaviour of the organization
    – keeping or even promoting people in roles even after they’ve demonstrated they are not capable at those roles

    with the new behaviour
    – finding the right roles for the right people, including demoting them if necessary
    – assessing them in those roles
    – and, I fully expect, replacing where an upgrade is needed, rather than blindly and reflexively removing them from the organization just because. It would not surprise me if this process starts within a month.

  142. Магия 10 says:

    frjohnk: Great, now it looks like we will have too much depth at center

    Oh, the humanity and all the passengers screaming around here.

  143. Магия 10 says:

    G Money: You think it works differently anywhere else in business?It doesn’t.The classic “who you know, not what you know” applies everywhere.

    That said, I will draw your attention to another delightful dysfunction that, as a technology guy in the 80s and 90s, I got to witness on a regular basis from tech companies, here and in Sillycon Valley.

    1. Tech companies would put new staff through intensive training and apprenticeship programs for typically two years, then move them from trainee positions into positions of full responsibility – but refuse to promote them or give them salary raises commensurate with the change.

    Other smaller (smarter) companies therefore built entire business models on hiring those developers.Give them a modest raise over what the incumbents were offering and you had an almost unlimited supply of trained developers who were over the two year trainee hump, ready and able to contribute – and you didn’t have to invest a dollar or a an hour of reduced productivity getting them there.

    Moral of the story 1: someone with two years of on-the-job training is an entirely different animal from a rookie.
    Moral of the story 2: failure to recognize this creates an inefficiency that smart people can exploit.

    2. These companies would also regularly promote their best developers – the ones with technical capability out the wazoo – and eventually move them into management positions.Because that’s the way you recognize employee contributions, you promote them.

    The problem is, the result was that you move someone into a role for which they are utterly unqualified and didn’t enjoy.The vast majority of these folks were unsurprisingly terrible at management, and crashed and burned in a big way as a result. Many got fired.

    And now you had a brilliant programmer on the street, waiting to be scooped up by someone willing to recognize technical excellence and managerial incompetence are the rule, not the norm.

    Moral of the story 1: otherwise highly capable people will crash and burn if you put them in roles above their head.This is as true of employees as it is for players on the ice.
    Moral of the story 2: smart managers and businesses recognize that its not just about people or roles, its finding the right people for the right role.
    Moral of the story 3: businesses that fail to recognize this create an inefficiency that smart people can exploit.

    Moral of the story for the Oilers:the mistake is not in keeping MacT now that he’s been through his two year trainee period. It was hiring him in the first place.But firing him now because of stupid and arbitrary assumptions like ‘fire them all’ or ‘they’re all poison’ is more likely to be a stupid act, not a smart one.

    On a side note, the assumption seems to be that the only reason MacT is around is because of Katz’s loyalty to him and the OBC.This is contradicted by the fact that MacT was fired by the organization in 2009.Katz’s demonstrated loyalty is to Lowe.And Lowe is no longer part of the hockey-related org chart.

    As far as I can tell, Chia appears to be an intelligent and experienced hockey manager.He’s no doubt talked to each of the individuals in the organization and concluded that they may indeed have something valuable to offer, including experience with the organization.

    Given that he’s smart, he’s doing the first smart thing, which is keeping the incumbents but finding new, better suited, roles for them.

    The second smart thing he’ll do, and I fully expect this will happen, is that he will be assessing their performance in those roles.Some will excel.Some, maybe all, will not, and they will then be moved out and replaced with better people (in Chia’s assessment).

    This is all consistent with the behaviour of smart and successful organizations.

    Those braying for blood are confusing the pre-existing behaviour of the organization
    – keeping or even promoting people in roles even after they’ve demonstrated they are not capable at those roles

    with the new behaviour
    – finding the right roles for the right people, including demoting them if necessary
    – assessing them in those roles
    – and, I fully expect, replacing where an upgrade is needed, rather than blindly and reflexively removing them from the organization just because.It would not surprise me if this process starts within a month.

    This. All. Week.

  144. Rational Zealot says:

    Great post, Gmoney.

  145. Yeti says:

    G Money: You think it works differently anywhere else in business? It doesn’t. The classic “who you know, not what you know” applies everywhere.

    Good institutions use networks and personal contacts as part of their operations to recruit good talent. Poor institutions are defined by their adherence to closed and monopolistic networks. That’s a big part of why the Oilers suck. And yes, it does work differently in other NHL teams. It just does. I can’t believe we’re debating this.

    > “This is all consistent with the behaviour of smart and successful organizations”.

    Did you really just use that sentence in relationship to the Edmonton Oilers? Are we through the rabbit hole here? 🙂

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