MAKING THE CALL ON THE RFA’S (CHIARELLI EDITION)

Peter Chiarelli is the new GM of the Edmonton Oilers, but his counsel includes Craig MacTavish, Scott Howson and Bill Scott. That may cloud the issue for the short term when assessing the minor league talent, but we have to assume Chiarelli is his own man and will delete as required. How will he handle the current 50-man roster? History tells us a culling is about to take place. Let’s start with the RFA’s and here are my bets.

  1. D Justin Schultz. If the Oilers could get him at a reasonable number, bringing back Schultz might make sense. As it is, I simply can’t see him returning to this team unless they plan to have another chaotic year. My bet is they trade him for a veteran defender who is overpaid but can still play top 4D.
  2. D Martin Marincin. I think he’s an NHL defenseman and believe Peter Chiarelli is a better judge of defensemen than MacTavish (low damn bar based on recent evidence). One hopes the Oilers sign Marincin to a cap-friendly deal and that is my bet.
  3. R Andrew Miller. He showed so well late in the season, and added to the AHL year I think he goes into camp with a real chance to make the big club. He’s not a big man, but he’s smart and skilled. Has a chance.
  4. D Brad Hunt. I would absolutely sign Brad Hunt and that’s with the knowledge he’s a ghastly defender. This guy could score 50 points on a MacLellan power play and for me that makes him worth keeping around even if it’s just to pump and dump.
  5. D Brandon Davidson. I can’t for the life of me understand the mind set that puts Davidson ahead of Marincin but it’s out there. Davidson, with due respect, is a solid depth prospect who could catch on for 200 NHL games if everything breaks right, but you’re always going to be able to get this guy if needed during the season. I do believe Edmonton signs him, mostly because (my bet is) MacT loves him miles more than Marincin. I don’t see the evidence.
  6. R Tyler Pitlick. The 50-man list gets a haircut every summer and the bubble boy this year (for me) is Pitlick. I’m not sure he survives, what with Iiro Pakarinen’s emergence and Rob Klinkhammer being signed for 2015-16. No bitching, Pitlick had his shot. It’s close, but I say they walk.
  7. L Matt Fraser. Chiarelli traded for him (the Seguin deal) but also waived him for Jordan Caron and that’s a low bar. I think Chiarelli walks him on speed alone, although it’s probably in the 40’s (per cent) in terms of the decision.
  8. D Keith Aulie. I don’t think the Oilers are going to sign Keith Aulie because the 50-man list is going to be tight. I know the Oilers liked him but he’s readily available in mid-season and devoting a spot on the 50 is unwise.
  9. L Curtis Hamilton. I don’t believe he returns. Finished No. 6 in Barons scoring this season, and if he’d done that in year one we might be talking about a player with a career. Always cheered for him, wish him the best, and part of me would love to see him return. It isn’t wise.
  10. C Kellen Lain. Coke machine. We didn’t get to see him much but he’s an orphan and unlikely to return.
  11. G Tyler Bunz. He never did get untracked as a pro prospect.
  12. G Frans Tuohimaa. Already gone. Leksand-bound.

I’m trading Schultz, keeping Marincin, Miller, Hunt and Davidson, and walking seven. Tell me I’m wrong.

I was listening to JG’s show this afternoon, Craig Button threw that opinion out and that must please our friend Michael Parkatti (the Roy selection was an analytic power drive). When we looked at the 2013 draft, I wrote:

  • In many ways Roy is the forgotten prospect in the 2013 draft, partly because he hasn’t been signed and partly because he is playing a secondary offensive role with the Quebec Remparts. Roy’s 26 goals in 59 games is a good total, especially considering 23 came at even strength. He is not yet signed, which may be due to his participation in the Memorial Cup (it is in Quebec City this time) but I sense the organization is still evaluating. Source

Here’s hoping the young man has a strong Memorial Cup.

50-MAN LIST

  1. G Ben Scrivens (suspect he’ll return in a backup role)
  2. G Laurent Brossoit (AHL starter and plenty of opportunity to move up)
  3. G Eetu Laurikainen (new hire)
  4. D Nikita Nikitin (Chiarelli may run over him with a Land Rover)
  5. D Mark Fayne (One of the few names the new coach can count on)
  6. D Andrew Ference (5-6-7D likely role for coming season. Does he remain captain?)
  7. D Oscar Klefbom (bright lights, big city. Golden decade, straight ahead)
  8. D Jordan Oesterle (I think they like him a lot, the speed is going to get him NHL looks)
  9. D Dillon Simpson (His progress in season two pro should be fun to watch)
  10. D Martin Gernat (One hopes he follows the conditioning program closely this summer)
  11. D David Musil (Chiarelli employed Adam McQuaid. Musil will be fine)
  12. D Darnell Nurse (He looks fabulous)
  13. D Ben Betker (May need to spend some time in the ECHL if it gets crowded)
  14. D Joey Laleggia (Can learn plenty from Hunt and Oesterle in Bakersfield)
  15. C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (He’s a wonderful player)
  16. C Anton Lander (newly signed, looks bona fide but needs to do it for 82)
  17. C Boyd Gordon (veteran could be trade bait by deadline if things break right)
  18. C Leon Draisaitl (Quality talent, Edmonton or Bakersfield)
  19. C Bogdan Yakimov (Shoulder aside, strong season)
  20. C Jujhar Khaira (Solid checker, offense may keep him from NHL career)
  21. C Travis Ewanyk (Not enough offense, we knew it draft day)
  22. C Kyle Platzer (newly signed) (Suspect he’ll play in Bakersfield next season)
  23. L Taylor Hall (healthy, starring role in Prague)
  24. L Benoit Pouliot (A rugged winger with skill)
  25. L Matt Hendricks (Had a wonderful year, can he do it again?)
  26. L Luke Gazdic (I’m not sure about his future on a McLellan team)
  27. L Ryan Hamilton (he’ll be the veteran hand in the  minors helping to guide the kids)
  28. L Mitch Moroz (I’m not sure about his future on a McLellan team)
  29. L Kale Kessy (I’m not sure about his future on a McLellan team)
  30. R Jordan Eberle (Fun watching him score at the WHC’s)
  31. R Nail Yakupov  (I have absolutely no idea how this will go)
  32. R Teddy Purcell (I think he’ll be back, speed only real issue)
  33. R Rob Klinkhammer (Signed for next season, may have competition for his job)
  34. R Iiro Pakarinen (I think he is going to make the team and have an impact)
  35. R Greg Chase (He has NHL ability, just has to be consistent and play a complete game)

PLAYERS WHO COULD STILL BE SIGNED

  1. C Derek Roy (UFA, suspect his signing window closed with Chiarelli’s arrival, but could be wrong)
  2. R John McCarron (must be signed, he’s a college senior, or he’s a free agent. Don’t see it happening)
  3. L Daniil Zharkov (no idea about his signing restrictions but team does own his rights. Doubt he is signed)
  4. C Marco Roy (he’ll be in the Memorial Cup, so we may not know until late. I hope he signs)
  5. L Anton Slepyshev (rumors afoot he will be signed. Good season.)
  6. R Jackson Houck (signs or re-enters, doesn’t look good for him as an Oiler)

That’s potentially 41 and of course they could get lucky and find someone in the first round who could help a little. Roman Horak re-signed with Vityaz Podolsk (KHL) on April 16, 2015 as per Patricia Teter.

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106 Responses to "MAKING THE CALL ON THE RFA’S (CHIARELLI EDITION)"

  1. supernova says:

    Of those 6 the only one I sign is Roy.

    I also sign winquist.

  2. Lowetide says:

    supernova:
    Of those 6 the only one I sign is Roy.

    I also sign winquist.

    Me too. Really like Winquist.

  3. Marc says:

    I really don’t get all the angst about Schultz’s contract. The only way the difference between what he should get paid (say $1.5m) and what he will get paid (say $3.5m) is in any way relevant to anyone other than Katz and Schultz is if the Oilers are spending to the cap next season and need the space. And even then, there are players who definitely aren’t part future ie. Nikitin, Purcell, Scrivens, Ference, that could and should be sacrificed before anyone who might be part of the future.

    The only thing that should have any bearing on Shultz coming back is whether they think he could be better than he was last season. If so, he should come back even though he’ll be overpaid. If not, then cut him loose.

    His contract should only play a role in whether or not he’s part of the team if and when they have do decide between paying him and paying some other part of the core. That just isn’t the case this offseason.

  4. WeirsBeard says:

    Marc,

    It’s not just the money but the development spot in a year they need to be better, and add defenders at the top of the roster. It’s a rookie role that should be used between Klef, MM, and Nurse, all younger, all cheaper.

  5. Mr DeBakey says:

    D Justin Schultz. If the Oilers could get him at a reasonable number, bringing back Schultz might make sense. As it is, I simply can’t see him returning to this team unless they plan to have another chaotic year. My bet is they trade him for a veteran defender who is overpaid but can still play top 4D.

    That’s my hope/thought/plan too.
    Though, to be honest, its hard to see a deal that works for both sides.
    Its a fairly small pool.

    Other options include trade to a Cap floor team for a pick, any pick.
    And, of course, better than a bad trade is to walk away.

    In addition to the 41, they need 2 goalies – one AHL & and a NHLer.
    One more Center too. You can call him Derek Roy if you want. But don’t suggest someone whose position shows C, but doesn’t play C. [Not you the host, you the reader]

  6. stush18 says:

    Im have absolutely no idea what will happen to yak and schultz.

    I think they both will be given the year, maybe less for Schultz, to show they belong here. Yak has value, you just have to wonder if his skill set is the most easily replaced on the oilers roster right now. I still think a yak for larsson trade would be a good fit.

  7. Mr DeBakey says:

    Marc: The only thing that should have any bearing on Shultz coming back is whether they think he could be better than he was last season. If so, he should come back even though he’ll be overpaid. If not, then cut him loose.

    Plus the fact that they’re trying to teach several other young D to be NHLers.
    There is not going to be enough wily vets to show them all the ropes.

  8. Younger Oil says:

    “One hopes the Oilers sign Marincin to a cap-friendly deal and that is my bet.”

    LT, that somewhat goes against what you’ve been saying since the end of the season, may I ask why thinking Marincin will be traded changed?

    Or are you thinking along the lines of a sign and trade, or that you just don’t think he’ll be on the team within a year or two?

    If he does stay with the team, that is incredible news (in my opinion at least).

  9. WeirsBeard says:

    LT,
    How close are other teams generally, as well as Chia’s Bruins, to the 50 man limit? That might give us an idea how far up the axe will fall.

  10. LadiesloveSmid says:

    supernova:
    Of those 6 the only one I sign is Roy.

    I also sign winquist.

    there are 2 Roys dammit!!!

  11. Pouzar says:

    The whole upper bowl looks empty in Quebec. Not impressed.

  12. Younger Oil says:

    Also, Willis with an article at ON discussing the possibility of a trade with the Rangers, and mentions Boyle as a candidate.

    That is a very intriguing idea, he has one year left at $4.5M, is likely an upgrade on many of our current defenders, would be a nice stop gap as all of our defensive prospects grow for another year, and in theory shouldn’t cost too much to acquire (though when you’re dealing with Sather you never know).

    Something like Musil/Davidson/Gernat and a late round pick for Boyle would be stellar in my opinion.

  13. Pouzar says:

    Younger Oil:
    Also, Willis with an article at ON discussing the possibility of a trade with the Rangers, and mentions Boyle as a candidate.

    That is a very intriguing idea, he has one year left at $4.5M, is likely an upgrade on many of our current defenders, would be a nice stop gap as all of our defensive prospects grow for another year, and in theory shouldn’t cost too much to acquire (though when you’re dealing with Sather you never know).

    Something like Musil/Davidson/Gernat and a late round pick for Boyle would be stellar in my opinion.

    Dan Boyle and reported interest in Mike Green. I don’t get it. We need guys to play the toughs and bump the other guys down.

  14. Pouzar says:

    Jezzuz dat dude got stung by a wasp?

  15. Woogie63 says:

    Yes to,

    Pitlick, Pakarinen, Marincin, Roy, Slepshev and Shultz. This crew can all skate and the first two will take the body.

  16. 36 percent body fat says:

    Marc,

    Salary should always come into play. The lower the salary he higher the value of the player, except for teams like Arizona. Look at Roman Josi, he is a great defender, but because of his cap friendly contract he has even more value.

    Contract should always be considered.

  17. Hall Awaits says:

    ” I Can’t for the life of me understand the mind set that puts Davidson ahead of Marincin but it’s out there.”

    Probably the same mind who was trading Eberle for Jamie Oleksiak…

  18. Pouzar says:

    Vladdy Hockey draws penalty then gets assist on delayed call.

  19. Lowetide says:

    Younger Oil:
    “One hopes the Oilers sign Marincin to a cap-friendly deal and that is my bet.”

    LT, that somewhat goes against what you’ve been saying since the end of the season, may I ask why thinking Marincin will be traded changed?

    Or are you thinking along the lines of a sign and trade, or that you just don’t think he’ll be on the team within a year or two?

    If he does stay with the team, that is incredible news (in my opinion at least).

    I’ve always wanted EDM to sign Marincin, but am very discouraged about the handling and the verbal.

  20. Gordies Elbow says:

    Poor coaching, poor systems play reflects more on a player the closer they are to the red light. We sent away a goalie, who when he received better coaching, is nominated for the Vezina.

    Jeff Petry wasn’t worth anything for trade, but with how he’s played in Montreal, any guesses as to his next contract? $5m? $6m?

    I see talk of not signing Justin Schultz as he’s not a $3.75m/yr defenseman, as evidenced by his play over the last two seasons. Given what we’ve witnessed from players like Dubnyk and Petry, shouldn’t we wait and see what McLellan and Woodcroft can do?

  21. Lowetide says:

    Hall Awaits:
    ” I Can’t for the life of me understand the mind set that puts Davidson ahead of Marincin but it’s out there.”

    Probably the same mind who was trading Eberle for Jamie Oleksiak…

    Heh. Well done.

  22. PhrankLee says:

    Kelowna is going to need to pick up their game immediately.

  23. Ryan says:

    G Money:
    Ryan,

    Indeed, that Eberle quote has been wielded by the anti-Eakins anti-Corsi folks as ‘proof’ that the team was goosing for Corsi.

    As I said, though, the evidence does not support it.If it was true, what you ought to have seen after Eakins was fired was a decline in Corsi, but a concomitant ‘pop’ in scoring chances?Agree?

    Here’s the actual curve of the two this last season compared.The ‘pop’ would have occurred sometime after point 18:

    http://i.imgur.com/wH37kh1.png

    Do you see a ‘pop’?

    I don’t.In fact, if you deconstruct the data, you’ll find that Eakins’ system had at least as much influence on the defense i.e. his team gave up fewer shots AND chances.Which further weakens the whole ‘just take shots to goose the Corsi’ argument.

    I think Eberle’s quotes indicate that Eakins used Corsi as a coaching tool, and that’s dumb.I’m certain it played a part in his firing, which was justified and overdue.But the actual Corsi effect people claim happened just doesn’t show, at least nowhere near the extent they (like Staples) claim it does.

    I suspect when we look at the Oilers last season and their difficulty generating good chances, we should be pointing to the fact that their best and most chancy player was injured or ineffective most of the season.

    This is from yesterday’s thread.

    Gmoney, to answer your first question, I would have to say that I disagree.

    As I mentioned before, the scoring chance data that you’re citing from War-On-Ice is just a subset of NHL shot data based on these definitions (http://blog.war-on-ice.com/new-defining-scoring-chances/).

    In that regard, I think that there are a few issues here. I think that the there’s a very good chance this data would suffer the same inflation that an “Eakins coaching a corsi/ shoot first mentality” would have on inflating Corsi. It’s a subset of data replete with flawed location data and other issues that we’re talking about. If there was a perfect definition and database of an absolute scoring chance with zero room for ambiguity, this wouldn’t be a concern.

    Secondly, human behaviour is quite complex. Ingrained habits that took time for Eakins to implement in the players are not going to flip off like a switch the second the Oilers have a new coach.

    Third, the Oilers had an inferior roster that likely worsened during Nelson’s reign. I would more likely expect the scoring chance data to stay about the same while the shot data to decrease rather than the Oilers to suddenly turn into scoring chance machines. By eyeball, that’s what your data basically suggests.

    Is there some way to isolate that non-scoring chance shot data over time? i.e. What’s leftover from the total shots – scoring chance shot data?

    My other suggestion was to avoid using the scoring chance data altogether for the above reasons and instead look at individual Oiler and team shooting percentages compared to their historical averages. 🙂

    My wife truly hates this blog (since it attracts so much of my attention), so I have to go now guys.

  24. Pouzar says:

    Kelowna lucky to not be down by 5

  25. Rondo says:

    Pouzar,

    A little rust.

  26. Hope Is A Dangerous Thing says:

    Long time reader, first time contributor. This is, bar none, the best Oiler site to read. A compliment not only to the genesis, but all of the participants. Anyway, enough sucking up,

    I suspect we’ll get a sense of PC independence with his first few “bold moves”. I pray to the Heavenly Father that he’s his own man.

  27. Rip Fan Winkle "OilOnslaught" says:

    Lowetide: I’ve always wanted EDM to sign Marincin, but am very discouraged about the handling and the verbal.

    I hope we don’t have to put up with anymore verbal diarrhea anymore . If they don’t like a player I only want to know after he’s gone.

    If they sign Roy we’ll know nothing has changed. He is not a good NHL player anymore. The Oilers can’t afford to carry defensive liabilities that don’t score 90 points plus.

  28. BOLD OVER (5-14-6-1) says:
  29. Feelin Saad says:

    Something to consider re: Shultz.

    McLennan has almost always had an offensive D-Man type on his teams. Dan Boyle was his goto offensive D-Man whom SJS lost last year, never really replacing him (Brent Burns wasn’t a full-time D-man). I suspect McLennan would want to keep Schultz, if only because he knows how to utilize a player in that role. If you want to get rid of Schultz, I would be curious to know who would play that role for McLennan. The one year SJS doesn’t have a pure offensive D-Man they missed the playoffs.

  30. fifthcartel says:

    I agree on Schultz. I was listening to Rishaug on Nielson & Fraser and found it interesting that Rishaug said they will not rely on him the same way they did these last two desperately feeding him minutes. He kinda alluded to the GM really pushing the coach to play him, and I think without that GM attachment now and a pretty big chunk he has to be paid I think hell be moved as well. That can’t rely on him and I don’t see any reason why Chairelli would feel compelled to.

  31. Ray says:

    Think Mike Green signs for $5 million per? Or would he be looking to cash in at a higher price point?

    If you can get him for anything south of what he’s at now I think Jultz should be traded with a pick for a legit dman. Know any teams in need of a right handed shot that can QB a power play, that can also be duped into thinking Jultz could be that player?

  32. Pouzar says:

    Dat Vladdy Hockey.

  33. godot10 says:

    Younger Oil:
    Also, Willis with an article at ON discussing the possibility of a trade with the Rangers, and mentions Boyle as a candidate.

    That is a very intriguing idea, he has one year left at $4.5M, is likely an upgrade on many of our current defenders, would be a nice stop gap as all of our defensive prospects grow for another year, and in theory shouldn’t cost too much to acquire (though when you’re dealing with Sather you never know).

    Something like Musil/Davidson/Gernat and a late round pick for Boyle would be stellar in my opinion.

    Boyle has a no movement clause.

    He is 40. Why would he agree to move from a contender and from the easy Ranger travel schedule to a non-contender and a gruesome travel schedule. From Manhattan to Edmonton?

    Davidson and Musil have the potential to be deep value for money depth defenseman for a decade. Why would one trade that away for one year of Boyle.

  34. BOLD OVER (5-14-6-1) says:

    Pouzar:
    Dat Vladdy Hockey.

    Should have drafted him instead of Draisaitl!

  35. Rip Fan Winkle "OilOnslaught" says:
  36. Mr DeBakey says:

    BOLD OVER (5-14-6-1): Dat Vladdy Hockey.
    Should have drafted him instead of Draisaitl!

    Well, rather than most of the other picks.

  37. John Chambers says:

    Feelin Saad:
    Something to consider re: Shultz.

    McLennan has almost always had an offensive D-Man type on his teams.Dan Boyle was his goto offensive D-Man whom SJS lost last year, never really replacing him (Brent Burns wasn’t a full-time D-man).I suspect McLennan would want to keep Schultz, if only because he knows how to utilize a player in that role.If you want to get rid of Schultz, I would be curious to know who would play that role for McLennan.The one year SJS doesn’t have a pure offensive D-Man they missed the playoffs.

    First, excellent handle.

    Second, the negativity around Schultz is overblown.

    If he plays 17 mins a night vs 23, gets paired with a responsible defender, and isn’t asked to be the team’s IronMan on the blue, I bet he actually succeeds.

    Schultz is not a top-pair guy or Norris calibre but he has played heavy minutes and put up points in the major leagues. Edm fans have to stop running mediocre d out of town .

  38. Ryan says:

    Lt said, “D Nikita Nikitin (Chiarelli may run over him with a Land Rover).”

    I’d swear the other day I saw a guy who looked like Chiarelli driving a white M6. His head snapped towards me because I drive a similar car.

  39. Ray says:

    John Chambers,

    I don’t think it’s about running him out of town so much as he’s being paid like a 3/4D but as you rightly point out should be a 5/6. This makes him over paid for what you can get out of him. So if you can parlay him as an asset into something that improves the team you have to strongly consider it.

  40. Hammers says:

    LT I for one don’t agree with your list but would also trade Schultz but wouldn’t keep Hunt and would give Pitlick one more shot . Tend to agree on the others with a question on Hamilton as I’m not sure he was handled right from the very beginning . Just like so many decisions the Oil have made on drafted players. Guess I’m hoping this new group utilizes there draft picks better .

  41. Ryan says:

    Maybe Rishaug should call out Yandle and Nash more often…

  42. Ray says:

    Ryan:
    Maybe Rishaug should call out Yandle and Nash more often…

    I’d rather him call out a couple Oiler players if it has the same effect. Maybe a minimum of 82 times next year.

  43. Rip Fan Winkle "OilOnslaught" says:

    Schultz is a tweener. Less minutes isn’t going to help. He is Hunt slightly better. He has the genetics but needs the heart and drive. It is an internal thing, can’t be taught. He has the best opportunity of any young skilled D in the entire league sitting in his lap right now.

    Edit: No blame but being a millionaire for not achieving anything meaningful as a pro may cause some cognitive issues for the young man.

    Perhaps it doesn’t matter that much as he can vacay in Mexico in the winter and golf all summer in Kelowna and never ‘work’ a day in his life if he plays it smart.

    It depends how much fame he wants.

  44. BOLD OVER (5-14-6-1) says:

    Well crap.

  45. Hope Is A Dangerous Thing says:

    John Chambers,

    Mediocre gets a free ride to the airport. If you’re inking the big deals, you’ll be held to a higher standard. Sounds fair to me.

  46. oilerstwiceremoved says:

    Don’t know what it is you see in Marincin. I see panic , lack of confidence and poor decisions. I’ve seen him up close and personal at the young stars tourney for a few years running in Penticton and have never been impressed- and that’s against rookies, prospects and distant bells. Davidson is strong, confident and plays with a determination that shows toucan never count him out. No?

  47. Ray says:

    Trade Jultz, and use the cap space plus for an upgrade…. Wiz from Anaheim might even be a slight upgrade over him and the cost would be less than what Jultz might fetch.

  48. Pouzar says:

    Jultz in a sheltered role won’t kill us…it’s NN and Ference on the roster that will. Addition by subtraction. Sign Martin/Michalek/Sekara and let’s go.

  49. Ray says:

    Pouzar:
    Jultz in a sheltered role won’t kill us…it’s NN and Ference on the roster that will. Addition by subtraction. Sign Martin/Michalek/Sekara and let’s go.

    Not a bad plan… trade Ference and Nikitin, sign those three and trade Jultz=better plan

  50. Hope Is A Dangerous Thing says:

    Ray,

    Jultzin a sheltered role is called Brad Hunt and for millions less.

  51. Ray says:

    Martin-Fayne
    Sekera-Klefbom
    Marincin-Michalek

    That would mean we had a pretty good summer.

  52. Ray says:

    Hope Is A Dangerous Thing:
    Ray,

    Jultzin a sheltered role is called Brad Hunt and for millions less.

    I’m not sure our defence can support either player in the top six

  53. Hope Is A Dangerous Thing says:

    Ray,

    Agreed. We’re not deep enough for such one dimensional players

  54. Barcs says:

    I would love to see NN andFerence gone, but whenever people say “just trade them” it confuses me. What GM would take those players? We’d have to retain salary for each, and even then probably have to add in a draft pick or prospect.

    NN I’m not as worried about because if they can’t move him his contract is done after next year. Ference though… I just hope PC can find a GM who values veteran defense men and sell him on that. The term on that deal is horrendous.

  55. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Ray:
    Martin-Fayne
    Sekera-Klefbom
    Marincin-Michalek

    That would mean we had a pretty good summer.

    Yup. Signing 3 of the 5 best UFA dmen while magically freeing up the cap space to do it would be pretty good.

  56. Zelepukin says:

    Hope Is A Dangerous Thing:
    Ray,

    Jultzin a sheltered role is called Brad Hunt and for millions less.

    agreed. Less minutes just reduces the frequency of his extremely soft, lazy play. He doesn’t magically become a better defenseman because he took 5 less shifts in a game.

    Barcs: I would love to see NN andFerence gone, but whenever people say “just trade them” it confuses me. What GM would take those players? We’d have to retain salary for each, and even then probably have to add in a draft pick or prospect.

    Exactly. Who in their right mind would look at any gametape from last season and think, wow we could use those 2 guys. That’s some video game logic.

  57. RexLibris says:

    Just got caught up on the Remparts/Rockets game.

    Draisaitl and Roy with double-digit penalty minutes and matching misconducts at the end of the 2nd period.

    Interesting. Looks like Leon was less than Professional tonight. 😉

    Rough game for him, looks like a decent one for Roy. I hope the Rockets can bounce back, but I’m glad the home team got in a good showing for the fans.

  58. Pouzar says:

    Barcs:
    I would love to see NN andFerence gone, but whenever people say “just trade them” it confuses me. What GM would take those players? We’d have to retain salary for each, and even then probably have to add in a draft pick or prospect.

    NN I’m not as worried about because if they can’t move him his contract is done after next year. Ference though… I just hope PC can find a GM who values veteran defense men and sell him on that. The term on that deal is horrendous.

    Ference was rumored to be wanted at the trade deadline but MacT wasn’t interested.

  59. RexLibris says:

    Barcs: What GM would take those players?

    Jim Rutherford traded Simon Despres at the deadline for Ben Lovejoy, a player the Penguins under Ray Shero had traded to the Ducks in 2013 for a 5th round pick.

    Never underestimate the shortsightedness of General Managers. Most of them may be very intelligent people, but you only have to find one to trade with.

    Nikitin and Ference probably have value out there for the same reasons the Oilers acquired them: a shot from the point and veteran leadership, respectively. Ference was rumoured to be piquing interest at the deadline, and if he’ll waive his NMC then I think it could easily get done. Nikitin is in the last year of his contract and an Eastern team may look at him and decide they could use a 3rd pairing powerplay guy.

    Now, if anyone suggests Chiarelli will get Travis Hamonic for one of them, they’re probably a little off target. But the players probably do have more value that we realize.

    There’s always the “this tandem got the Oilers McDavid, let’s get them for our rebuild” angle we could pray for as well.

  60. RexLibris says:

    Pouzar: Ference was rumored to be wanted at the trade deadline but MacT wasn’t interested.

    Which made me wonder whether there were some undiagnosed concussion symptoms at play.

  61. Магия 10 says:

    Ray:
    Martin-Fayne
    Sekera-Klefbom
    Marincin-Michalek

    That would mean we had a pretty good summer.

    and what would a really good summer look like?

  62. Ryan says:

    RexLibris: Which made me wonder whether there were some undiagnosed concussion symptoms at play.

    For whom? Ference? Mact?

  63. cc says:

    I wouldn’t be surprised if the Oiler’s keep Schultz but I think it will depend upon him. He would have to take a paycut. The Oiler’s played him way too much. 19 and a half minutes a night at evens that was good for top 20 in the NHL. He needs to play less. I think that this year, if Schultz is willing to put in the work, it’s to rebuild him as a player.

    He was lights out in the AHL, he has talent, but the Oiler’s didn’t do him any favours. Both the organization and the player need to take accountability for that. I think Todd & PC will do that but they will need JS to buy in. If not you have to ship him off.

    In Feb 2007, the Bruins picked up a struggling offensive defenseman – Dennis Wideman. He was -40 in 142 games in his first two seasons. The Bruins first cutback his ice-time and paired him with Chara. The Oilers don’t have a Norris talent to pair him with but they do have a big Slovak they can pair him with. Yesterday, I think, Woodguy mentioned that there was data that showed that Marincin was good at preventing zone entries. I think Marincin and Schultz would be a good offensive zone / soft minute pair. Then cutback the minutes to 14 or 15 minutes a night until he gets his confidence back.

  64. stush18 says:

    Rip Fan Winkle "OilOnslaught":
    Schultz is a tweener. Less minutes isn’t going to help. He is Hunt slightly better. He has the genetics but needs the heart and drive. It is an internal thing, can’t be taught. He has the best opportunity of any young skilled D in the entire league sitting in his lap right now.

    Edit: No blame but being a millionaire for not achieving anything meaningful as a pro may cause some cognitive issues for the young man.

    Perhaps it doesn’t matter that much as he can vacay in Mexico in the winter and golf all summer in Kelowna and never ‘work’ a day in his life if he plays it smart.

    It depends how much fame he wants.

    Okay seriously stop with the character attacks.

    We are being worse than the media right now. Has schultz ever said this? Implied it? No? So watching him lollygag on the ice, you derived that he is a player who just wants to make millions while not working a day in his life?

  65. G Money says:

    Swedish: re: your post – sounds good. I know you’re working up some edits. When you’re ready, please email me at gmoney@coolsite.net and we’ll get your post published!

  66. cc says:

    RexLibris,

    If Clarkson can get trade so can Nikitin or Ference but you might not like the return.
    I think that Nikitin for Ruutu (in NJ) might be a possibility.
    The Sens are going to buy out Colin Greening (he’s set to make 6 million in actual salary) if the Sens trade for Nikitin it would save them 1 million if they traded for Nikitin and bought him out.
    Maybe the Islanders would trade Nikitin (at a salary retain) for Grabner who is scheduled to make 5 million.
    Maybe the Wings would trade Weiss (at a salary retain) for Weiss. I don’t think that’s a deal the Oiler’s would want but who knows? This year his Pts/60 was 2.03 he struggled two years.

    It’s about being creative.

  67. Aitch says:

    Pouzar: Ference was rumored to be wanted at the trade deadline but MacT wasn’t interested.

    Let’s hope it wasn’t Chiarelli calling.

  68. G Money says:

    Ryan,

    Hmmm. So here’s where I see this thing at.

    The contention has been made (without actual supporting evidence, video or statistical) that Eakins’ decent team Corsi was ‘fake’, that he was pumping Corsi while giving up (or passing up) good scoring chances. Theories included taking lots of shots from the perimeter and not going to the net. A similar arguement was made on the defensive side – that the Oilers were suppressing their shot count against by suppressing shots from the perimeter while giving up loads of five-bell chances from in close.

    Conversely, it has been asserted that Nelson ‘fixed’ these things, that his teams poor Corsi was merely a matter of the team reverting back to a more normal situation, with a lower shot differential but better scoring chance differential.

    As I showed in the chart, the actual data DOES NOT support these theories. I actually calculated the ratio of scoring chances for Eakins’ 18 games and Nelson’s last 20 games (to take the Nelson adjustment period in the middle out, where Nelson’s team markedly underperformed in terms of scoring chances) and they are amazingly similar: 91.8%. Both.

    Now the point you make is that the w-o-i scoring chance metric is not ideal, and I certainly don’t disagree. However, it DOES account for perimeter shots and it DOES account for a lot of going to the net (the metric includes rebounds).

    So while it may not be perfect, it certainly does cover an awful lot of ground of what we would consider true scoring chances.

    So if you are to continue to argue that there really was a difference between the two that isn’t covered by the metrics, you are now arguing that the ENTIRE scope of that difference is in some element of the game not captured by shot locations, rebounds, or rush shots. It’s ‘something else’, and that something else is something too subtle and too rare to be captured by the w-o-i metric, yet significant enough to account for the entirety of your theorized difference.

    Now, I cannot concretely argue against you, because you’re arguing for the null hypothesis (or alternatively, the God hypothesis: you can prove the existence of God, but you can never disprove the existence of God because hey, we just haven’t seen him/her/it yet).

    But that line of argument offends my sensibilities as a scientist. Occam’s Razor and all.

    I know you’re no rookie at the whole statistics thing, so I have to ask you: how far do you take the complete non-confirmation of your hypothesis? At some point, you might want to admit that you’re arguing what you’re arguing not because it is a supportable contention, but because you want it to be true (because you, like I, like Nelson and don’t like Eakins and really really hope that Eakin’s good Corsi was a mirage, which also lets you write off Nelson’s poor Corsi also as a mirage).

    I started my own analytical look at Eakins vs Nelson because I hoped to find that too! But the data completely disconfirms that. I gotta go with the data, which is way more objective than I will ever be.

  69. Pouzar says:

    Ryan: For whom?Ference?Mact?

    Good question!

  70. book¡je says:

    G Money,

    What about a hypothesis of Eakins vs the rest of the league – to me that would more strongly indicate if he was essentially gaming Corsi through some kind of strategy.

    I think Nelson provides too small of a sample size and that he represents a very strange situation.

    I want to know Eakins vs the Norm , not Eakins vs Nelson.

  71. Ray says:

    Магия 10: and what would a really good summer look like?

    Hmmm. This roster would be a really good summer

    Hall-CMD-Williams
    Pou-Nuge-Ebs
    Eriksson-Lander-Yak
    Hendricks-Gordon-Klink
    Draisaitl

    Valsic-Seabrook
    Klefbom-Fayne
    Irwin-Marincin
    Nurse

    Bernier
    Talbot

    But that’s just dreaming. We might have, at best, an 11.5% chance at having that roster to start the year.

  72. G Money says:

    book¡je,

    Not sure what you mean. Eakins is actually the small sample size here – only 32 games. Nelson is the big(ger) sample size, as he has 50 games under his belt.

    Comparing Nelson to Eakins is about the only way I can see of determining if Eakins was gaming Corsi, as the roster is basically 99% the same. So any deltas you get can at least to some extent attribute to the coaching change.

    We know that Corsi declined quite signficantly with Nelson. If Eakins was gaming Corsi, one would presumably expect that the scoring chances under Nelson would improve, at least on a relative basis. And the key point I was making above is that, as far as they go, there wasn’t really any change at all relative to Corsi. Nelson had a lower Corsi and a comparatively lower number of scoring chances and that’s about as far as you can get.

    Any comparison with other teams and you end up with a situation where you’re comparing two entirely different rosters, so its unclear what that tells you about Eakins. There is a difference obviously, but how do you separate the Eakins effect from the roster?

    Any comparison of vs the league also suffers from the data munging issue in that it is dominated by Nelson’s sample. So how do you glean anything about Eakins from that? (Unless you want to manually pull all the teams games for up to Dec 16th and calculate it that way, but I at least have no desire to do that much manual data wrangling!)

  73. Hope Is A Dangerous Thing says:

    stush18,

    So, help me buy a vowel, what else would we collectively base our opinion on if not how we saw him play? Is that, coupled with endless stats and analysis, not enough to form an “educated” opinion?

  74. Kmart99 says:

    G Money,

    Well, if the numbers say the oilers high quality shots dropped proportionately with Nelson when the shot shares went down, then that settles it.

    My issue is that on one hand you’ve got WOI saying that as the shot shares dropped, so did the scoring chances for( SCF), and on the other you’ve got Staples saying when the shot shares went up, the SCF went down.
    So you can’t just pick one data set and say the evidence doesnt support the hypothesis. I think the evidence is saying that Eakins was getting his team to focus on increasing shot shares while putting less focus on shot quality and trusting that more shots will just automatically result in more scoring chances. This is supported by the verbal from Perron and Eberle both having mentioned the focus on just getting shot shares up. The evidence that the scoring chances were dropping while shots were increasing is found in Staples’ nbrs. However, once Nelson came on board and let the shot shares slide, we see the scoring chances dip as well despite ppl thinking the team was better under Nelson. Which, to me, suggests that both scenarios are possible. If you’re a team that is a legit contender, both scoring chances and shot shares will be up. It’s unlikely that a high rate of scoring chances can be maintained if your shot share is low, but the opposite may also be possible. If a team’s shot share is high, they arent necessarily going to have a high SCF.

    You’ve said so yourself, corsi is an assessment tool, not a coaching tool.

  75. G Money says:

    book¡je,

    Not sure if this helps, but if you were to look at the full year results and try to parse Eakins games relative to the rest of the league:
    – He would have been 20th in the league in CF%
    – He would have been 21st in the league in SCF%

    If you do the same experiment the last 20 games of the season for Nelson (after his numbers improved, they declined quite markedly after the changeover, so I’m trying to sandbag this a bit in Nellie’s favour):
    – He would have been 25th in the league in CF%
    – He would have been 28th in the league in SCF%

    Not sure if that answers your question or not.

  76. VanOil says:

    Work brought me into my favorite radio shows listening area today. I have a belated question for Steve Lansky, if Tampa and Anaheim are the two cup finalist the hockey may be great but would any one care?

    Seats would be cheaper than a NYR v. CHI series I guess.

  77. G Money says:

    Kmart99,

    The problem with that Staples is doingis that he is comparing the chances and Corsi between years for the Oilers. I suspect the w-o-i data might show the same thing he’s showing.

    Here’s the thing: this does NOT support the thesis that Eakins was cheating for Corsi.

    Number one issue is that of course the rosters are very different, as are the systems, injuries, etc. So we don’t know what the causative factor for a decline in chances might have been. I’d say it had a lot to do with Hall’s tough year. What we CAN say is that it probably wasn’t an Eakins effect – because the majority of the games that this scoring chance decline showed up for was with Nelson, not Eakins.

    And as I believe I’ve shown above, the decline in scoring chances relative to Corsi was, if anything, worse with Nelson than with Eakins, not better! Unless Nelson was also trying to goose Corsi (in which case he did a really horrible job of it). So whatever caused the decline in scoring chances was likely endemic to the team, not the system.

  78. G Money says:

    You know it’s funny, I think the reason people are looking for a scoring chance/Corsi dichotomy is because they really really don’t want to consider the possibility that Eakins was doing something right.

    It’s the same polarized thinking as we see above with Schultz – Eakins was a bad coach, so it must be the case that absolutely everything he did was bad, he had no redeeming qualities at all. Kind of ridiculous if you ask me.

    I think there are simpler explanations than postulating that Eakins was useless at everything and the Corsi improvement was a mirage.

    I’d suggest that the Corsi improvement was a real thing, but the old-school methods Eakins used alienated and annoyed the team. They heard the message but hated the messenger. You don’t need to bring Corsi into it – that situation alone makes Eakins a bad coach, one that deserved to be fired. Add in some bad goaltending and demoralizing losses and you get the Oilers season.

  79. Marc says:

    36 percent body fat:
    Marc,

    Salary should always come into play.The lower the salary he higher the value of the player, except for teams like Arizona.Look at Roman Josi, he is a great defender, but because of his cap friendly contract he has even more value.

    Contract should always be considered.

    Contract values have no bearing on a team’s competitiveness in and of themselves. You don’t start the season with ten bonus points in the standings if you have lots of value contracts, or start each game down a goal if you have lots of bad contracts.

    Contracts only become relevant if the potential good or bad value crystalises in some tangible way. A potentially good contract only becomes an actual good contract when either the team spends the difference in cap space between the player’s actual cap hit and his market value on good players that the team would otherwise be unable to fit under the cap, or if you trade the player and get more in return than you otherwise would because the player’s cap hit is lower than his production.

    Similarly, A potentially bad contract only becomes an actual bad contract when either the team is prevented from adding good players that it otherwise would have added by the difference in cap space between the player’s cap hit and his market value, or if you trade the player and get less in return/have to take a bad contract back because the player’s cap hit is higher than his production.

    The key thing here is that unless the team spends to the cap, or actually trades a player, then his cap hit has absolutely no relevance to the assessment of his value.

  80. striatic says:

    Marc: The key thing here is that unless the team spends to the cap, or actually trades a player, then his cap hit has absolutely no relevance to the assessment of his value.

    If a team is planning on spending to the cap in any future year for which the contract is on the books, the contract size is an issue.

    Presumably the Oilers are planning on doing that at some point during Schultz’s next contract.

    There’s also maintaining the capacity to spend to the cap if opportunities present themselves.

    Bloated contracts close doors.

  81. Marc says:

    To illustrate what I mean, the Oilers have had a couple of players over the past few years who have significantly outplayed their cap hit – Eberle during the second and third years of his ELC, for example, or Petry pretty much every year. Can anyone point to any tangible way that those ‘value’ contracts have made the Oilers more competitive on the ice? The team didn’t spend to the cap in any of those years, so the theoretical cap space created by those ‘value’ contracts was only that – theoretical. It didn’t actually help the team at all.

    Likewise, there have been a few players on the Oilers over the past few years whose cap hit significantly outstretches their performance on the ice. But as the Oilers had spare cap space in each of those years, none of those contracts can be said to have hurt the team on the ice. The performance of the players absolutely hurt the team. But their contracts did not.

    The only contracts that can even arguably be said to have actually, tangibly hurt the Oilers in recent years are those of Smid (only brought back prospects), Gagner (had to take Purcell) and Dubnyk (had to take Hendricks).

  82. Marc says:

    striatic: If a team is planning on spending to the cap in any future year for which the contract is on the books, the contract size is an issue.

    Presumably the Oilers are planning on doing that at some point during Schultz’s next contract.

    There’s also maintaining the capacity to spend to the cap if opportunities present themselves.

    Bloated contracts close doors.

    Schultz will almost certainly be signed to a one year deal, so what he might be making in future years and whether or not the team want to pay that much isn’t something that needs to be, or indeed should, be decided this summer.

    And if an opportunity presents itself in the coming year that requires the $2M or so difference between Schultz’s cap hit and what he’s probably worth, there are players who definitely aren’t part future ie. Nikitin, Purcell, Scrivens, Ference, that could and should be sacrificed before anyone who might be part of the future.

    Don’t get me wrong – I definitely agree that it’s better have contracts that are potentially good than contracts that are potentially bad. But we shouldn’t lose sight of the fact that how much a player gets paid, and whether or not he provides good value, is only relevant to us as fans to the extent that the over or underpayment affects the competitiveness of the team on the ice.

  83. hunter1909 says:

    G Money: people…really really don’t want to consider the possibility that Eakins was doing something right.

    lol

    Similarly, we can be sure General Von Paulus was “doing something right” in January 1943.

  84. Ryan says:

    G Money:
    Ryan,

    Hmmm.So here’s where I see this thing at.

    The contention has been made (without actual supporting evidence, video or statistical) that Eakins’ decent team Corsi was ‘fake’, that he was pumping Corsi while giving up (or passing up) good scoring chances.Theories included taking lots of shots from the perimeter and not going to the net.A similar arguement was made on the defensive side – that the Oilers were suppressing their shot count against by suppressing shots from the perimeter while giving up loads of five-bell chances from in close.

    Conversely, it has been asserted that Nelson ‘fixed’ these things, that his teams poor Corsi was merely a matter of the team reverting back to a more normal situation, with a lower shot differential but better scoring chance differential.

    As I showed in the chart, the actual data DOES NOT support these theories.I actually calculated the ratio of scoring chances for Eakins’ 18 games and Nelson’s last 20 games (to take the Nelson adjustment period in the middle out, where Nelson’s team markedly underperformed in terms of scoring chances) and they are amazingly similar: 91.8%.Both.

    Now the point you make is that the w-o-i scoring chance metric is not ideal, and I certainly don’t disagree.However, it DOES account for perimeter shots and it DOES account for a lot of going to the net (the metric includes rebounds).

    So while it may not be perfect, it certainly does cover an awful lot of ground of what we would consider true scoring chances.

    So if you are to continue to argue that there really was a difference between the two that isn’t covered by the metrics, you are now arguing that the ENTIRE scope of that difference is in some element of the game not captured by shot locations, rebounds, or rush shots.It’s ‘something else’, and that something else is something too subtle and too rare to be captured by the w-o-i metric, yet significant enough to account for the entirety of your theorized difference.

    Now, I cannot concretely argue against you, because you’re arguing for the null hypothesis (or alternatively, the God hypothesis: you can prove the existence of God, but you can never disprove the existence of God because hey, we just haven’t seen him/her/it yet).

    But that line of argument offends my sensibilities as a scientist.Occam’s Razor and all.

    I know you’re no rookie at the whole statistics thing, so I have to ask you: how far do you take the complete non-confirmation of your hypothesis?At some point, you might want to admit that you’re arguing what you’re arguing not because it is a supportable contention, but because you want it to be true (because you, like I, like Nelson and don’t like Eakins and really really hope that Eakin’s good Corsi was a mirage, which also lets you write off Nelson’s poor Corsi also as a mirage).

    I started my own analytical look at Eakins vs Nelson because I hoped to find that too!But the data completely disconfirms that.I gotta go with the data, which is way more objective than I will ever be.

    GMoney,

    How can I have a discussion with you if you’re going to start throwing straw men at me? 🙂 Now this being the internet and all, I want to keep this discussion cordial. I am here just to discuss ideas not to pound on my chest and try to win arguments.

    Conversely, it has been asserted that Nelson ‘fixed’ these things, that his teams poor Corsi was merely a matter of the team reverting back to a more normal situation, with a lower shot differential but better scoring chance differential.

    For the record, I have never asserted that Nelson fixed anything. He was a rookie NHL coach who was given an opportunity to play out the string in garbage time relative to the season for the Oilers.

    I’ve never really been on the Nelson’s a saviour bandwagon and I’m pretty sure my comments at this blog reflect that.

    As I said, though, the evidence does not support it. If it was true, what you ought to have seen after Eakins was fired was a decline in Corsi, but a concomitant ‘pop’ in scoring chances? Agree?

    This is a previous quote of yours from another thread, but it seems to capture your position here. It ties into the above quote about Nelson fixing things. It’s also another straw man, because I’ve never made the suggestion that we should see a ‘pop’ in SC.

    If Eakins was inflating corsi which may or may not have had any effect on actual scoring chances, we would expect to see:

    1. The corsi drop after Eakins left. We did see this.
    2. A low shooting percentage during Eakins reign. We did see this. Now, to be fair, I don’t have the data, but I don’t think it rebounded a ton (if any) under Nelson.
    3. Why would we expect to see a ‘pop’ in scoring chances under Nelson? At best, we may might expect to see an increasing ratio of scoring chances to CF under Nelson, but your data does not support this.

    As I showed in the chart, the actual data DOES NOT support these theories. I actually calculated the ratio of scoring chances for Eakins’ 18 games and Nelson’s last 20 games (to take the Nelson adjustment period in the middle out, where Nelson’s team markedly underperformed in terms of scoring chances) and they are amazingly similar: 91.8%. Both.

    Overall, I do agree with you here. While the theories that are not supported may have nothing to do with what I’ve been talking about, I’ll agree with your conclusion. 🙂

    Now the point you make is that the w-o-i scoring chance metric is not ideal, and I certainly don’t disagree. However, it DOES account for perimeter shots and it DOES account for a lot of going to the net (the metric includes rebounds).
    So while it may not be perfect, it certainly does cover an awful lot of ground of what we would consider true scoring chances.
    So if you are to continue to argue that there really was a difference between the two that isn’t covered by the metrics, you are now arguing that the ENTIRE scope of that difference is in some element of the game not captured by shot locations, rebounds, or rush shots. It’s ‘something else’, and that something else is something too subtle and too rare to be captured by the w-o-i metric, yet significant enough to account for the entirety of your theorized difference.
    Now, I cannot concretely argue against you, because you’re arguing for the null hypothesis (or alternatively, the God hypothesis: you can prove the existence of God, but you can never disprove the existence of God because hey, we just haven’t seen him/her/it yet).
    But that line of argument offends my sensibilities as a scientist. Occam’s Razor and all.
    I know you’re no rookie at the whole statistics thing, so I have to ask you: how far do you take the complete non-confirmation of your hypothesis? At some point, you might want to admit that you’re arguing what you’re arguing not because it is a supportable contention, but because you want it to be true (because you, like I, like Nelson and don’t like Eakins and really really hope that Eakin’s good Corsi was a mirage, which also lets you write off Nelson’s poor Corsi also as a mirage).
    I started my own analytical look at Eakins vs Nelson because I hoped to find that too! But the data completely disconfirms that. I gotta go with the data, which is way more objective than I will ever be.

    Wow. That’s quite a rant. Now, you’re kinda offending my sensibilities as a scientist. 🙂

    Basically, what we have here is a negative result with your data albeit analyzing a somewhat different hypothesis than I had proposed.

    I spent an entire summer once analyzing an enormous database with SPSS. At the end of the summer, you know what I had? A negative result! We had failed to find a difference between two groups along a vast number of parameters.

    The problem as you know with negative results, it’s pretty damn hard to prove your study (in this case, data) is adequately powered to support the negative result.

    I asked my supervisor what we we’re going to do. You see in the interest of efficiency, I wrote the framework fo an entire research paper contemporaneously while doing this analysis.

    He looked at me and said, “I know a journal that we can submit this to!” I said, “oh really, which one?”

    He replied, “The journal of negative results and walked away laughing while tossing it into the scrap heap…”

    All you’ve done is shown that you’ve failed to find evidence that Eakins inflated corsi. We have verbal from Eberle suggesting it was likely, but we can’t find data to support it.

    Now, that sir is an entire different thing from proving it didn’t happen and you know this.

  85. Ryan says:

    G Money: You know it’s funny, I think the reason people are looking for a scoring chance/Corsi dichotomy is because they really really don’t want to consider the possibility that Eakins was doing something right.

    I’ve acknowledged this before.

    I think it’s very possible that Eakins did some things right. He hired Dellow with the focus of improving the team’s corsi. From what we know, Dellow at one point travelled with the team. I have the sense that Eakins may have been testing different strategies to squeeze more corsi out of the Oilers roster.

  86. Lowetide says:

    I just want to say that I agree with pretty much everything G Money says in this thread. Eakins is a lightning rod for the fan base (part of the reason I’m holding off his RE) but at this point very few fans I’ve seen give him any credit at all.

    He made mistakes and he got stubborn on some things and when he gets another chance he’ll be better because of his EDM experience. The idea that he cooked the Corsi books at the expense of all is sort of implies Corsi has no correlation with success.

    And I’d hoped we had gotten beyond that debate.

  87. Saul Goodman says:

    Carl Hagelin is RFA that Jonathan Willis brought up in his “cap hell series”. What would the asking price be? Yakimov + mtl 2rd. To-way player that PK well and in the right age.

  88. thejonrmcleod says:

    Ray,

    Am I a bad hockey fan if I have no idea who Irwin is?

  89. lance says:

    Lowetide,

    I haven’t gotten the sense here that anyone is really trying to disparage Eakins personally, rather, the question regatds coaching for corsi–as a plan–either has merit or generally fails, and either data can show it or it cannot.

    As a general corsi non believer (lots of incomplete data produces generally inconclusive answers) I am not surprised that correlations show inconclusive results. But I’m still intrigued by Godot’s theory that a somewhat radical approach to coaching may have been going on, and though it’s hard to prove with said data, it’s still a bit fascinating both the theory and the attempt to (dis) prove.

    Changes happen in sports, the next moneyball approach can happen, and maybe Eakins was trying to start it. Innovation thru statistics is possible and maybe Eakins was giving it a whirl. I love experimental thinking, and I’m grateful that GMoney has finally useda 3D planar assessment to try and measure the theory. While it didn’t necessarily prove anything, this is the first I’ve seen of a 3D planar approach to shot quality. That, I support.

    If the holy grail of data in hockey is shot quality approximation, I wonder if this algorithm is its beginning.

  90. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    The arguments against Eakins that relate to adv stats in some way are tainted by the following:

    1. a loathing of Eakins

    and/or

    2. a loathing of Dellow

    and/or

    3. a loathing of Corsi

    They don’t allow for concrete argument. And, they exist solely in the universe in which the following took place:

    1. Eakins hired Dellow

    2. Eakins experienced Corsi success (to some limited degree)

    3. Post firing, Eakins talked about adv. stats in some high profile spaces (TSN Analytics; Sloan Conf), but despite saying relative banalities, this was registered by the uncharitable as some confluence of the following: Eakins LOVES CORSI FOR REALZ, TOTES!!!

  91. blainer says:

    I think why the fanbase was soooo pissed with Eakins is because of all of our star players went in the wrong direction on his watch.. Yak Shultz Hall Nuge etc and especially Dubnyk.. I’m pretty confident just about everyone here understands the importance of Corsi and I agree Eakins was good with Corsi.. To me and if you go back and look at my posts over the last couple of years you will see I said coaches who get solid goaltending rarely get fired unless there is unrealistic expectations. I will say it again even with TMc as the new coach.. If he gets the goaltending that Eakins got I can only imagine what we will be saying about him…

  92. Ryan says:

    lance:
    Lowetide,

    I haven’t gotten the sense here that anyone is really trying to disparage Eakins personally, rather, the question regatds coaching for corsi–as a plan–either has merit or generally fails, and either data can show it or it cannot.

    Excellent point. This is just intellectual curiosity not a witch hunt for Eakins.

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    The arguments against Eakins that relate to adv stats in some way are tainted by the following:

    1. a loathing of Eakins

    I don’t have a Godot-type dislike of Eakins. At the time he was hired, I would have preferred a more experienced coach–GM too and I went on record here for both. I don’t think anyone would argue that his tenure here went particularly well.

    Romulus Apotheosis:

    2. a loathing of Dellow

    Huh? I’ve been a huge fan of Dellow for years. I can’t recall home many times I half jokingly posted at this very blog that the Oilers should hire him.

    Dellow’s awesome and I love his work. I’d like for him to be more involved on the GM side with contract valuations and player acquisition analysis.

    Name one person here who’s referenced more mc79 articles here since his site disappeared than I have?

    Romulus Apotheosis:

    3. a loathing of Corsi

    Why would you think I hate Corsi?

  93. Kmart99 says:

    G Money,

    Are you suggesting that had Eakins kept the Oilers playing at the same level they played up until he was fired, that the scoring chances wouldnt be down compared to years prior? That seems to be the opposite of what happened. Are you also saying we can’t compare years prior simply because of roster changes? Seems like a poor reason to exclude previous data IMO. Maybe if the previous rosters had a bunch of players who consistently produced a high number of scoring chances that were removed. But they didn’t. And as for Hall’s poor year, you can’t just say it was a major factor when the shoe could have been on the other foot. Maybe the team’s style was a major factor in Hall’s decline. I’m not saying it was or wasn’t, but how can you know?

    As for the Nelson half of the season, the team was getting crushed under Nelson, even worse than under Eakins. But that doesn’t change the reality that while Eakins was increasing shots, scoring chances and shooting% were either dropping or running in place.

    If you say that the change in scoring chance numbers relative to shots during Eakins’ time isnt statistically significant compared to previous years because of roster change, then I guess I just have to accept that as gospel? The increase in shots was most certainly significant during Eakins’ final hakf season, i recall linking to an article that ranked a team’s odds of making the playoffs based on their shot diff, and the oilers chances of making the playoffs based on being ranked 19th in shot diff at one point was pretty high, I think like 30%. So it’s not really possible to say that Eakins didnt create a significant bump in shot diff. So if scoring chances ran in place during Eakins time this year compared to previous years, or dropped even slightly, I’d say it is a significant point of note, despite the roster turnover. You say that it isn’t. The Oilers PDORel was the worst in the league when you ran those numbers, which suggests either bad luck, hot goaltrnding from the opposition, players aren’t getting as many scoring chances/shot as they have averaged throughout their careers, or a combination of all three. Either way, my opinion is that ratio of shotdiff/scoring chance compared to previous oilers seasons shows a significant change(even without nelson).

    I’m not against shot share metrics, how can anyone be. They have proven to be the best available predictor for us fans. But the numbers are what they are, and the significance of those numbers is subjective apparently.

    For the record, i know it was horrible goaltending that really sunk Eakins more than anything else, but to say evidence doesn’t support a disconnect in the corsi/scoring chance nbrs for the oilers is just not true. Sure the numbers were worse with Nelson, but if you completely remove nelson and his half of the season, my argument wouldn’t change.

    Shot diff is a great predictor, I don’t hate Eakins, and I have zero issue with Dellow’s views on hockey. I’ll believe whatever the numbers say.

  94. oliveoilers says:

    I don’t have a dog in this fight, so I went and got one. Here it is: Woof, pant, bark.

    But, if he spoke English, he would say that this ‘Eakins is history’s greatest monster’ and ‘St Dallas died so Corsi may live’ spat is now one of the most pointless arguments ever. Six months ago, very pertinent. Now? Completely moo. I’m not even going to throw my hat in with one side or the other because it will only matter to posterity when the story of the Oilers turn around is written in a decade from now.

    I mean, for fudge sake, Connor freakin’ McDavid! Todd McLegoland! Peter Chia-pet! ‘Honest’ Bob Nicholson!

    I guess it was only a matter before we all got bored with inane trade proposals and dug up a rotting corpse.

    It’s already dead – as Leslie Feist would sing, Let it Die! We will have enough things to be divided on during the summer, no need to raid the archives.

    Just enjoy what we have for the moment, ladies. I put this down to basically mass bum’s rush – we’re just not collectively used to any of this bon chance and we’re expecting the other shoe to drop any day, that it was all a hoax by Burkey and Gillis will be the real GM with Torts as coach.

    I don’t think it ever will. Each of you must deal with this in what ever way floats your boat, but I would suggest demonising a human being or using vast amounts of intellect, resources and time proving a null point is beneath all of us.

    Use your powers for good, fellow LTers!

  95. cabbiesmacker says:

    oliveoilers:

    !‘Honest’ Bob Nicholson!

    If it’s all the same to you I’ve heard it’s “Saint” Nicholson. Let’s have a little respect here please.

  96. oliveoilers says:

    cabbiesmacker: If it’s all the same to you I’ve heard it’s “Saint” Nicholson. Let’s have a little respect here please.

    Sorry, but I’d buy any car he’d try to sell me.

  97. cabbiesmacker says:

    oliveoilers: Sorry, but I’d buy any car he’d try to sell me.

    Unless it was a Chev or Olds. I hope he’d at least be pushing Toyotas or Hondas. Something reliable that gets good mileage

    Have you seen the 2015 Toyota Corsi?

  98. Soup Fascist says:

    thejonrmcleod:
    Ray,

    Am I a bad hockey fan if I have no idea who Irwin is?

    You are forgiven. He is the guy we would get from the Stony Plain Eagles for Nikitin, assuming Chiarelli eats 99.9% of NN’s salary.

    Huge upgrade for Oil.

  99. SwedishPoster says:

    Whatever Eakins was coaching didn’t work. At all. Corsi without outscoring your opponent is useless, at least over a stretch of time. Occasional games where you outshoot the other team without getting the win can be seen as a sign of better times. But if you outshoot, or in Eakins case almost draws even, and still lose and lose while pretty much every player on your squad looks like he’s taken a step back your coaching strategy is deeply flawed. Semi decent corsi or not.
    And it’s not just goalies or your people skills it’s a tactical issue as well.

  100. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide: The idea that he cooked the Corsi books at the expense of all is sort of implies Corsi has no correlation with success.

    On this point, I don’t think that’s what folks are saying. What they’re saying is that Corsi does have a correlation with success, but that both (Corsi and success) are effects of playing the game with good structure and strategy, etc (aka, the “right” way). In other words, Corsi is a way to measure the likelihood of long-term success, rather than Corsi is the cause of success.

    So, if you go for just boosting the shot attempt rates, you are neglecting the underlying reason(s) for success, while gaining the appearance of success. For the record, I don’t think that’s what happened with Eakins, and frankly, I’m not sure anyone would actually do that, and more frankly, I’m reasonably sure that someone like Dellow would flee the scene if he saw that happening.

    I think Eakins put the vice grips on these guys and tightened them down to play with some rigorous structure. I think it was working to some degree, but they tended to play well for a large percent of the time, punctuated by massive, demoralizing mistakes, including those made by the wandering professor, leading to good Corsi and losses. I remember someone (MacT?) saying after Eakins was fired, that the guys needed to stop gripping their sticks so tightly. That’s how they played, too. One mistake was the end of the game.

    Now I’m not saying that the goaltending was good (more like “galltending”), but the craptacular-center-the-puck-from-the-board-scrum-right-to-the-opponent-in-your-own-defensive-zone move by Nikitin is gonna bring your goalies SP down. The mistake these guys (MacT and Eakins) made (in one sentence) is putting together a subpar roster (goalies included) and trying to get them to play above their level of poise, after years of suckitude which drained everyone to about empty, fan and player.

    MacT is good at prospect talent assessment (ie – who’s got it), but not good at assessing whether these guys are ready to go at the NHL level. Draisaitl is a good example, but also I remember him talking glowingly about the centers in the org, near the beginning of his tenure as GM. He mentioned Andrew Miller, and it sounded like he thought Miller could step in and provide depth while Nuge and Gagner were down. Fast-forward to now, and Miller looks like a prospect, but he was nowhere near that level two summers ago. There’s a long list of these mis-assessments in level made by MacT.

    I think it’s important not to close the book on any of these arguments (even the Corsi-is-stupid argument), because they’re never quite as settled as some folks think they are. They become dogmatic and that is unhealthy. Alternatively, plowing the same field repeatedly, without planting anything is a supreme waste of time and energy.

    “The important thing is not to stop questioning.” – Einstein

  101. Lowetide says:

    SwedishPoster:
    Whatever Eakins was coaching didn’t work. At all. Corsi without outscoring your opponent is useless, at least over a stretch of time. Occasional games where you outshoot the other team without getting the win can be seen as a sign of better times. But if you outshoot, or in Eakins case almost draws even, and still lose and lose while pretty much every player on your squad looks like he’s taken a step back your coaching strategy is deeply flawed. Semi decent corsi or not.
    And it’s not just goalies or your people skills it’s a tactical issue as well.

    That runs counter to logic for me. If you’re sawing off at 50% Corsi, then the possession problem isn’t an issue (or at least not until you’re a .500 team and want to get better).

    If your team is:

    50% possession 5×5
    .893 save percentage
    9.1 shooting percentage
    25th in PP
    22 in PK

    then I don’t think possession at evens is your issue. You’ve solved that, now shoot the goalie.

  102. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Anytime I see a post with Eakins in it, I just think to myself…..

    McDavid.

    And it makes the itch go away!

    Is there anything that kid can’t do?

  103. SwedishPoster says:

    Lowetide: That runs counter to logic for me. If you’re sawing off at 50% Corsi, then the possession problem isn’t an issue (or at least not until you’re a .500 team and want to get better).

    If your team is:

    50% possession 5×5
    .893 save percentage
    9.1 shooting percentage
    25th in PP
    22 in PK

    then I don’t think possession at evens is your issue. You’ve solved that, now shoot the goalie.

    I’d hang the goalies and Only the goalies if the team had been scoring at a somewhat ok clip and defended somewhat well. They weren’t. I’d blame the forwards not scoring and goalies not saving if they had been a defensively tight team that didn’t give up a bunch of odd man rushes every game. This was not the case. In no area outside of corsi did Eakins Oilers do well. That’s a badly coached team imo.

  104. Lowetide says:

    SwedishPoster: I’d hang the goalies and Only the goalies if the team had been scoring at a somewhat ok clip and defended somewhat well. They weren’t. I’d blame the forwards not scoring and goalies not saving if they had been a defensively tight team that didn’t give up a bunch of odd man rushes every game. This was not the case. In no area outside of corsi did Eakins Oilers do well. That’s a badly coached team imo.

    Oh yeah, I’m not arguing Eakins should have kept his job, but I’m also fine with MacTavish losing his job, too. The GM didn’t have a balanced lineup, knew about the issues at C and gave the coach a teenager, PLUS there was no attempt to shore up goal.

    Thank God veterans are in place at GM and coach. I’ve had a lifetime of rookies there.

  105. blainer says:

    Good Goaltending makes bad coaches look good. Bad goaltending makes good And bad coaches look bad.. So if we had Carey Price in net for us this past year with a 50 % corsi.. Two Questions..

    1. Is Eakins still the coach ?

    2. Do we have McDavid ?

    Thank God we didn’t have Carey Price .. Would love him or someone similar this year though.. For me the goalie is the starting pitcher in the playoffs.. best pitching wins titles just like hockey.. Most of the time the Stanley champs and the best save % in the playoffs go hand in hand..

  106. G Money says:

    Lowetide: .893 save percentage

    25th in PP

    That’s pretty much the season in a nutshell. You don’t need to postulate that Eakins somehow broke Corsi.

    And if you want to laud Nelson, laud his incredible PP, which is singlehandedly the reason for the improved results under his regime. While “visually better”, presumably because his team didn’t hate him, Nelson’s team at EV gave up more shots AND chances, and generated fewer shots AND chances, than Eakins’ team.

    The whole debate, as Olive noted, is mostly a moot point … but I think it has implications for right now and for next year in two ways:
    – as recently as two weeks ago, there were people suggesting that they thought Nelson was a better hire for next year than McLellan, which is an assertion that I can’t even begin to parse.
    – if, as the data suggests, the real problem is with the roster, then (excepting a healthy Hall) without changes, we should start scouting Auston Mathews.

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