TRUE STORIES

There’s a lot of angst in comments, dm’s, emails and shouts across the fence into my in box this weekend. A lot of people wanted the Oilers to buy out someone and we’re halfway through the process with no announcement in sight. As I mentioned yesterday there’s every chance no buy out occurs if Peter Chiarelli believes a trade is preferable (this has been Bob Stauffer’s pov for some time now and it makes sense). That COULD change if the market changes, but we shouldn’t be anxious about today.

So far this spring and summer, PC has shown himself to be aggressive while also being able to read the market. It’s important not only to acquire the right players but also to get them at the right price. The acquisitions of Andrej Sekera, Griffin Reinhart and Eric Gryba are part of the progression but there’s miles to go and we should expect an upgrade.

The question is, when? Well, the NY Islanders acquired Nick Leddy and Johnny Boychuk right at the end of the pre-season, at the exact moment teams needed to become cap compliant. That’s the ‘last chance Texaco’ for teams trying to get under their cap, and the clubs who are still in difficulty (Chicago and Tampa Bay are over, while Philadelphia, St. Louis, Detroit and San Jose have little wiggle room) have some nice defensive options (Seabrook, Coburn, Carle, etc) that may come available.

That’s likely the next opportunity—the compliance window—but even after that the Oilers will have opportunities. We’re used to inert managing by the Oilers because the in-season work has been negligible. Kevin Lowe famously did nothing with his goaltending in 2005-06 despite an obvious area of need, addressing it only as the team got close to the deadline. Chiarelli? No. If he manages in Edmonton as he did in Boston, we’re going to see a lot of October-February activity. Consider his first season (defense only) in Boston.

First, we have to agree on something: When Chiarelli took over Boston, there was a deal in place between the Bruins and the Ottawa Senators.

  • Associated Press: Per the agreement between Boston and Ottawa, Chiarelli — who does not officially take over the Bruins until July 15 — wasn’t allowed to advise Boston about any of the Senators free agents.

You can choose to believe Chiarelli spent those weeks talking about 28 other teams, while also recusing himself from the room when talk of Chara arrived on the agenda, but I don’t feel that’s realistic. For me, the Chiarelli blue transactions in year one go like this:

  • June 26, 2006: Bruins trade D Nick Boynton and a fourth-round pick to Phoenix for Paul Mara and a third-round pick. Gorton from the Bruins side: “The trade enabled us to get somebody who is more offensive and more capable on the power play. I think it will blend well with what we already have and we are looking forward to Paul coming here and wanting to be a part of the turnaround.” Source
  • July 1, 2006: Bruins sign D Zdeno Chara. A franchise altering transaction.
  • February 10, 2007: Bruins trade D Brad Stuart and F Wayne Primeau to the Calgary Flames for D Andrew Ference and F Chuck Kobasew. Chiarelli: “It became evident that when I wasn’t having success signing Brad that I was going to have to trade Brad. Part of what we have to do is preserve the assets of players that are unrestricted. Chuck is 24 and Andrew is 27. They add some youth and energy, which we want to add to this team.”
  • February 27, 2007: Bruins trade D Paul Mara to the NY Rangers for D Aaron Ward.
  • February 27, 2007: Bruins trade D Brad Boyes to St. Louis for D Dennis Wideman.
  • Chiarelli on the February trades: “Part of the rationale in the [Brad Stuart] deal and these two deals was to have players who can help us now, in the short term and the mid term. I feel we have the depth, both in unsigned draft choices and in Providence. For example, David Krejci came up, and game to game, he played better. So that’s just the glimpse of the depth we have.”

I think Peter Chiarelli hasn’t made a trade for that No. 1 D because the opportunity hasn’t made itself available. If we go through today with no movement, it means there’s nothing shaking that a buyout would aid in the transaction. Bottom line: Sekera, Reinhart and Gryba are extremely unlikely to be the only additions to the NHL team. Also, a player like Gryba, a free agent next summer, may not be here a long time so don’t get too attached. The world won’t end today if there’s no buy out. Promise.

todd simpson young stars

AHL ASSESSMENT

A lot of talk last night about the AHL team and prospects bubbling under. It’s important to grab as much information as possible on prospects but the NHL doesn’t make it easy. TOI totals would be most helpful and Eric Rodgers did some outstanding work for Barons and Oilers fans this year. It reall helps us when looking at prospects. Two examples:

  • Bogdan Yakimov: 57GP, 12-16-28 16:11 TOI (estimate). Points-per-60: 1.82. NOTE: Eric estimates that Yakimov was playing just 12:06 a night before Lander’s recall, and then 19:48 afterward. We should expect a big season in Bakersfield.
  • Dillon Simpson: 71GP, 3-14-17 16:18 TOI (estimate). Points-per-60: 0.88. The takeaway here (and with Yakimov) is that Edmonton did in fact play their best young prospects in the AHL last season. That hasn’t always been the case, and it was decidedly not the case with Mitch Moroz, but credit where due these young men flew many pro sorties last year.

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109 Responses to "TRUE STORIES"

  1. Soup Fascist says:

    Unless there is a plan to go over the cap the Oilers are far better off letting NN and Purcell’s contract die a natural death and try to move them at the deadline. Dealing with Ference next year saves a couple of years of lingering cap penalties.

    I would hope Chia has an exit strategy with a trade of one or more of these three plus draft / salary retained if a good piece becomes available elsewhere later this summer. I am sure he does.

    Before we get our panties in a bunch we need to let things play out. Buyouts are not the be all and end all – especially a Ference buyout today which has implications past CMD’s ELC, when every little bit of cap space may be precious.

  2. Pouzar says:

    Ference cannot be taking a regular shift with this team if Chia is serious about turning North.

  3. Woodguy says:

    Edmonton Oilers fans:

    GM does something = angst

    GM does nothing = angst

    Edmonton Oilers fans = angst

    It’s been a long, long time since every management decision couldn’t be correctly second guessed.

    We have no idea what competent management feels like and angst is in our DNA now.

  4. Woodguy says:

    Pouzar:
    Ference cannot be taking a regular shift with this team if Chia is serious about turning North.

    Blind spots in regards to veterans is the most common negative affliction amongst NHL GMs.

    I hope Chia has learned from his past.

  5. John Chambers says:

    Soup Fascist,

    Agree with you here.

    There should be better opportunity next summer to add quality vets via trade and free agency. At the very least Gryba and Reinhart will be eating up a lot of the minutes Ference and Nikitin would normally consume, while Nurse should be good for 20+ a game in the New Year.

  6. Bag of Pucks says:

    One key difference btw Chia and Lowe/MacT seems to be a preference to address needs via trade rather than free agency.

    Certainly seems a more sensible approach if the goal is to acquire good players AND value contracts.

    It makes more sense to try and trade Ference than buy him out to me. I’d also give Nikitin a good look in training camp before making hard decisions on him. He’s a vet in his prime. A return to form is still a possibility. The player I’d like them to buyout is Purcell so they could pursue a better two way player like Fehr or Glencross.

    But the lack of activity on that front tells me Chia has made the calls and doesn’t see a value contract coming back.

    That’s ok too. Players like Miller, Pitlick and Pakarainen have earned a shot and could surprise in TC.

  7. Ducey says:

    LT, Woodguy did up nice comment the other day with all the cap numbers. With bonuses, even a buyout doesn’t leave them much room if they don’t want to have carry over into next year.

    I think we all look at Generalfanager and figure they would have room to add a D at $5 million with a buyout. I am not sure that the case.

    I think we (or maybe its just me)need to come to terms with the bonuses as they impact not only the ability to add, but also whether guys like Leon and Nurse make the team.

    Can someone clarify whether it is feasible to add $5 million to the roster with a NN buyout?

  8. Tokyo Oil says:

    What to do with Ference is a big challenge for Chia. That extra year that MacT conceded is proving to be a pain in the ass.

    Having said that I still think the team can head north with him on the roster. But as Pouzar said, he can’t be taking a regular shift unless it’s a temporary gig and he’s filling in for guys who are injured.

    If he stays then he has to be 6/7 on the roster without the C.

  9. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy:
    Edmonton Oilers fans:

    GM does something = angst

    GM does nothing = angst

    Edmonton Oilers fans = angst

    It’s been a long, long time since every management decision couldn’t be correctly second guessed.

    We have no idea what competent management feels like and angst is in our DNA now.

    I’ve mentioned it here before, but Robertson Davies once said of Canada that it was less a country one loved and more a country about which one worried.

    The Oilers, as a result of their own history from 1990 onwards, between brief bouts of passion and excitement, are a team over which one fusses and frets.

    The fact they’ve begun to actually build something now gives us all the more reason for concern that somewhere along the way someone is going to screw it all up.

    Because that would be a very Oilers thing to do.

  10. Lowetide says:

    Ducey:
    LT, Woodguy did up nice comment the other day with all the cap numbers. With bonuses, even a buyout doesn’t leave them much room if they don’t want to have carry over into next year.

    I think we all look at Generalfanager and figure they would have room to add a D at $5 million with a buyout. I am not sure that the case.

    I think we (or maybe its just me)need to come to terms with the bonuses as they impact not only the ability to add, but also whether guys like Leon and Nurse make the team.

    Can someone clarify whether it is feasible to add $5 million to the roster with a NN buyout?

    The Oilers have everyone signed now but the bonus issue for Reinhart, Draisaitl and McDavid is real. I think (and have said a few times) the Oilers will begin the season with both Reinhart and Draisaitl in the minors. A 20-game denver boot will allow the bonuses to fall away, thereby leaving McDavid’s salary as the only issue.

    Using those ideas, the Oilers are at $69,217,000 and have $2,183,000 in cap room. Covered in the red graph here:

    http://lowetide.ca/2015/07/17/almost-balance/

    If they want a $4M player, something has to go. Maybe they get there by sending Nikitin (with some salary retained) away. I don’t see a $5M player currently available via free agency. The Seabrook deal would probably be Schultz ($3.9M) for Seabrook ($5.8M) so Edmonton would probably need to move Nikitin via trade.

    Buy out isn’t necessary if Chiarelli has another move. The Ference issue isn’t really (imo) related to actual value.

  11. RexLibris says:

    Bag of Pucks: One key difference btw Chia and Lowe/MacT seems to be a preference to address needs via trade rather than free agency.

    Part of that could be that MacTavish and co. had difficulty attracting the best FAs.

    Blame the weather, the travel, the roster, the management, the smell in the locker room hallway.

    Chiarelli will likely have an easier time on account of his own reputation, that of Bob NIcholson, the new arena and one or two of those flashy kids they’ve picked up recently – name escapes me at this moment.

  12. Woodguy says:

    As per Gregor a few minutes ago, don’t expect any buyouts:

    Jason Gregor ‏@JasonGregor 4m4 minutes ago
    @Woodguy55 @EdmCaper have to offer player with NMC to be put on waivers. If he declines then can buyout. Doubt Oil buyout NN.

    Jason Gregor ‏@JasonGregor 2m2 minutes ago
    @EdmCaper @Woodguy55 noon I think was closer to signing. But either way don’t expect a buyout.

  13. Woodguy says:

    It think its totally reasonable to assume this was the recent course of action:

    1) Chia talking to teams about trades and some of them would require a buyout to make it work via the cap

    2) Chia takes Schultz to arbitration for the sole reason to re-open the buyout window in case he needs it

    3) Favourable trade doesn’t come to pass and buyout window closes with no action

  14. Soup Fascist says:

    Woodguy: Blind spots in regards to veterans is the most common negative affliction amongst NHL GMs.

    I hope Chia has learned from his past.

    If I remember the episode dealing with Ference’s last Bruin’s off season correctly, the “Behind the B” series, it was Chia who said something like – love Ference’s character but we can’t pay him what he is looking for to be a #6, maybe a #5 – and boom, he was gone. No contract offered, until MacT swooped in with at least one year too much term.

    I know there are other examples where Chiarelli overpaid veterans, but my guess is he has learned from it. Chia strikes me as a guy who will admit a mistake and learn from it versus making terrible decisions to try to justify previous bad ones.

  15. Bar_Qu says:

    RexLibris: I’ve mentioned it here before, but Robertson Davies once said of Canada that it was less a country one loved and more a country about which one worried.

    The Oilers, as a result of their own history from 1990 onwards, between brief bouts of passion and excitement, are a team over which one fusses and frets.

    The fact they’ve begun to actually build something now gives us all the more reason for concern that somewhere along the way someone is going to screw it all up.

    Because that would be a very Oilers thing to do.

    That’s an excellent explanation of what Oilers fans have had to endure and maybe exactly the way we are the way we are.

    Thanks for the quote.

  16. oliveoilers says:

    Woodguy:
    It think its totally reasonable to assume this was the recent course of action:

    1) Chia talking to teams about trades and some of them would require a buyout to make it work via the cap

    2) Chia takes Schultz to arbitration for the sole reason to re-open the buyout window in case he needs it

    3) Favourable trade doesn’t come to pass and buyout window closes with no action

    Just a small thing: If some of the teams required that we make a buyout, wouldn’t that make a trade invalid as the player is now free to go to which ever team he desires? How do you trade a player you’ve bought out? Am I missing a scenario where this can happen?

  17. GCW_69 says:

    If the Oilers don’t buy out either Ference or Nikitin, I believe they will be making a big mistake.

    Willis has brought me around that the target should be Ference. There are two reasons for this:

    1. Cap situation aside, it is looking like this summer and likely next summer are going to be buyers markets. Buying out Ference now gives the Oilers one extra spot on the reserve list this season and two extra spots next year. Extra reserve spits are gold in a buyers market.

    2. Not buying out anyone now not only hurts on the reserve list, it hurts on the cap space. Buying out Ference now delivers about the same cap space this year vs buying out Nikitin, but delivers considerably more cap space next year.

    The other for talked about scenario is buying out no one this year and Ference next year. In that scenario the Oilers have about $2.75m and one less reserve spot this year. They have the same reserve spots next year and about the same cap space. In 2017 they have the same reserve spots and about the same cap space. In 2018 they have the same reserve spots and about $1.1m more in cap space if I understand correctly.

    So, that would mean the price of $2.75m in cap space this year and one reserve spot this year in a buyers market is about $1.1m in cap space in 2018.

    Seems like a good deal to me.

  18. Woodguy says:

    Ducey,

    Can someone clarify whether it is feasible to add $5 million to the roster with a NN buyout?

    That really depends on who else is on the roster.

    A Niktin buy out costs $1.5MM x 2 years on the cap.

    Nikitin’s current cap hit is $4.5, so you’d free up $3MM by doing it.

    This line up has 22 players, so you’d need to add a F:

    Jordan Eberle $6,000,000.00
    Taylor Hall $6,000,000.00
    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins $6,000,000.00
    Teddy Purcell $4,500,000.00
    Benoit Pouliot $4,000,000.00
    Lauri Korpikoski $2,500,000.00
    Matt Hendricks $1,850,000.00
    Mark Letestu $1,800,000.00
    Luke Gazdic $800,000.00
    Rob Klinkhammer $725,000.00
    Anton Lander $987,500.00
    Nail Yakupov $2,500,000.00
    Connor McDavid $925,000.00

    Nikita Nikitin $4,500,000.00
    Justin Schultz $3,900,000.00
    Mark Fayne $3,625,000.00
    Andrew Ference $3,250,000.00
    Andrej Sekera $5,500,000.00
    Eric Gryba $1,250,000.00
    Oscar Klefbom $894,167.00

    Ben Scrivens $2,300,000.00
    Cam Talbot $1,450,000.00

    Total cap hit = $65.2MM

    Add McD’s bonuses because its prudent and you are at $68.05

    Subtract Nikitin on a buyout (-$3MM) and you are at $65.05

    Assuming the 13th forward isn’t expensive you can add a $5MM D.

    You COULD add DrySaddle as the 13th D, but then you’re hoping he doesn’t hit all his bonuses.

    I have no idea what his bonus structure is, but I’d imagine Chia does and has probabilities on him hitting them to help make this decision.

  19. oliveoilers says:

    RexLibris: I’ve mentioned it here before, but Robertson Davies once said of Canada that it was less a country one loved and more a country about which one worried.

    Billy Connelly once said “never trust a man with a surname as his first name.”

  20. speeds says:

    Woodguy:
    Edmonton Oilers fans:

    GM does something = angst

    GM does nothing = angst

    Edmonton Oilers fans = angst

    It’s been a long, long time since every management decision couldn’t be correctly second guessed.

    We have no idea what competent management feels like and angst is in our DNA now.

    I have varying levels of concerns with:

    -Reinhart trade
    -Marincin trade
    -Gordon trade
    -Letestu signing

    Is that simply being “angsty”, do others have any hesitation with all/any of those moves?

  21. Richard S.S. says:

    From this point on in the Oilers’ existence, how this team is constructed will change. Top 6 F, top 4 D and both G (The Top Twelve) are all that will matter in a very short time with this team. Why? The big money will be with them. Bottom 8 F and bottom 3D (The Bottom Eleven) will be costing the team, at most, $12.0 Million. How does this work?

    1) Manage Cap Space! It is extremely hard to do. Every Bonus (possibly achievable) must be contained in the present year’s Salary, no carryovers. There must be Cap Space for in-season acquisitions, especially around Trade Deadline time. There must be Cap Space at all times to take advantage of Cap Tight Teams. THERE MUST BE CAP SPACE, ALWAYS! Use every means possible to gain maximum Cap Space.
    2) No dead wood! Everyone must do his job well or they are gone. How, doesn’t matter. Every Dollar spent will start to matter.
    3) Draft very well! First two rounds fill your Top Twelve. Next two rounds fill your Bottom Eleven. The balance of the draft provides organizational soldiers/filler for the Teams.
    4) Promote well! Provide promotion for Bottom Eleven and minors if, and when it’s well-earned.
    5) Asset Management! Every deal must be value for value, as equal as is possible. Everyone has value.
    6) Planning! Plan for every move possible 3-5 years ahead, but never plan for a Cap Rise and you won’t be caught short. If you must pay Super Max dollars to one or more players, consider a Trade first. I expect there’s a limit coming in how much the Cap goes up as money isn’t unlimited.

    The changes into the composition of the Oilers will start very soon (1-2 years) or it will be forced on the Oilers (2-3 years). I think it’s time to start now, before being forced to comply. You must put the best possible team on the ice, if at all possible.

  22. G Money says:

    I *think* this is a sneak peek at Cam Talbot’s new Oilers mask:
    https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10153466721804819

  23. oliveoilers says:

    G Money:
    I *think* this is a sneak peek at Cam Talbot’s new Oilers mask:
    https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10153466721804819

    He slimed me!

  24. G Money says:

    speeds: I have varying levels of concerns with:

    -Reinhart trade
    -Marincin trade
    -Gordon trade
    -Letestu signing

    Is that simply being “angsty”, do others have any hesitation with all/any of those moves?

    Wait a second – does that mean you’re OK with the Gryba signing?!

  25. bassguy says:

    hey Rex, one of my favorite reads is the Deptford Trilogy… I find him similar to John Irving and how they can weave a tale although the master of that of course is Dickens.,cheers!

  26. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    just following up on something from the last thread:

    Soup Fascist: Fair.But I can tell you that Marincin’s off season habits were a concern when he was with the Oil Kings and his first couple Oiler camps. Eakins comments in regards to Marincin were in line with what i had from a very credible person within the Oil Kings.

    Marincin never played with the Oil Kings. Perhaps we’ve confused Marincin and Gernat?

  27. speeds says:

    G Money,

    I don’t know if it’s a trade I love, but I think that has more to do with the Marincin trade than the Gryba trade itself. I think there’s a not bad chance Chiarelli can get the pick back for Gryba around the deadline if he wants – not a guarantee, but a pretty decent chance.

  28. godot10 says:

    Pouzar:
    Ference cannot be taking a regular shift with this team if Chia is serious about turning North.

    The pressbox as the #7D is available. Nurse and Reinhart need to be playing either in Edmonton or Bakersfield. So the role of designated sitter is available. The appropriate time to buyout Ference is next summer, when the buyout won’t effect McDavid’s polst ELC years.

  29. oliveoilers says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    just following up on something from the last thread:

    Marincin never played with the Oil Kings. Perhaps we’ve confused Marincin and Gernat?

    Even with him being in Toronto, some people are still tripping over Marty’s mutton chop sideburns.

    Now THOSE are some long, long sidies.

  30. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: Part of that could be that MacTavish and co. had difficulty attracting the best FAs.

    Blame the weather, the travel, the roster, the management, the smell in the locker room hallway.

    Chiarelli will likely have an easier time on account of his own reputation, that of Bob NIcholson, the new arena and one or two of those flashy kids they’ve picked up recently – name escapes me at this moment.

    Stauffer mentioned that some agents told him that the Oiler will be in the position where FAs will come on cheap one year contracts to play with McDavid/Hall/RNH/Eberle/DrySaddle to boost their numbers, take a run at a cup and sign long term for better money elsewhere the next year.

    A conveyor belt of good 27-30 year old forwards to flesh out the roster on cheap deals year after year would be amazing.

    Gotta fix the Dcorps for that to happen though.

  31. flyfish1168 says:

    speeds,

    Gryba’s toughness in the back end and Gazdic replacement. JMHO

  32. Chris says:

    speeds: I have varying levels of concerns with:

    -Reinhart trade
    -Marincin trade
    -Gordon trade
    -Letestu signing

    Is that simply being “angsty”, do others have any hesitation with all/any of those moves?

    I wasn’t a fan of the decision to flush Marincin. Reading between the lines I think Chia thinks the defense last year was poor at stopping the cycle hence why he picked up Gryba.

    Reinhart is an attempt to trade futures for a more developed asset which objectively makes sense. Some people worry about the player, I’m content to wait and see.

    The dumping if Gordon and replacing him with Letestu seems like good asset management. Replace a highly paid declining veteran with a younger cheaper version, freeing up done cap space.

  33. Woodguy says:

    oliveoilers: Just a small thing:If some of the teams required that we make a buyout, wouldn’t that make a trade invalid as the player is now free to go to which ever team he desires?How do you trade a player you’ve bought out?Am I missing a scenario where this can happen?

    You buy out player X in order to make room for player Y from the other team.

    You trade assets A,B,C for player Y (3 for 1!!!)

    X has nothing to do with the trade.

  34. Woodguy says:

    speeds: I have varying levels of concerns with:

    -Reinhart trade
    -Marincin trade
    -Gordon trade
    -Letestu signing

    Is that simply being “angsty”, do others have any hesitation with all/any of those moves?

    I hear you.

    I think the first 2 are of more concern than the last two.

  35. oliveoilers says:

    So here’s an ansgtless Oilers tale:

    My kids and other animals were playing ball hockey, ages varying from 1yo to 12yo. We have a 8 month old Anatoli-Kangal dog that likes to play keep away with the ball. His name is Bo and he’s already 85lbs. The kids have christened him Bo McDavid, as he really is very good.

  36. wordbird says:

    oliveoilers,

    G Money,

    Ah! so the one he unveiled this week was just for some CCM promos. Ghostbusters Yay!

  37. G Money says:

    speeds: I have varying levels of concerns with:

    -Reinhart trade
    -Marincin trade
    -Gordon trade
    -Letestu signing

    Is that simply being “angsty”, do others have any hesitation with all/any of those moves?

    On a more serious note, I think one could draw a distinction between “hesitation” and “angst”.

    1 – Reinhart you could make a strong argument that this was an overpay, but that’s about it.

    “Hesitation” inner dialogue: “it was an overpay but not by that much. You could argue #16 is good value for a former #4 pick with good size, skill, and off-the-charts hockey IQ. The #33 is what you pay for the development acceleration. Maybe that should have only been a #40, but we didn’t have that, and #57 probably wasn’t enough. Chia’s track record at assessing defensemen is pretty good. Hopefully Reinhart turns into the top 4 shutdown defender his potential says he will be”.

    “Angst” inner dialogue: “OMIGOD WE OVERPAID, CHIA DOESN”T KNOW WHAT HE”S DOING, HOW WILL WE EVER SURVIVE.”

    2 – Marincin I think was a bad bet, but we don’t have all the information either.

    “Hesitation” inner dialogue: “fancystats wise, Marincin was better than Ference, Nikitin, and almost certainly better than Gryba. Why was he sent out for pennies on the dollar? Is the OBC, with their notoriously poor track record of assessing defensemen playing a role here? Conversely, we shouldn’t get our shorts in too much of a knot – the guy long-term was likely a third pairing defender. There are also some who claim to have insider knowledge (see previous thread) that suggest that the whole ‘being out of shape’ is a real concern. If that’s the case, it should be a legitimate concern for everyone. Even being an effective player may not offset that concern. If you had an employee who was effective at his job but only worked four hours a day, and refused to work more even when asked, would you keep him? I wouldn’t. In the real world, people are fired for a lot less than that.”

    “Angst” inner dialogue: “OMG MACT IS STILL IN CHARGE, MARINCIN WAS INCREDIBLE, HOW COULD WE GET RID OF HIM, THIS TEAM IS GOING NOWHERE.”

    – I am more concerned that Gryba is not a third pairing defender.

    “Hesitation” – most objective measures suggest he’s not as good as Marincin at actually playing defense. On the other hand, some credible watchers of the game (e.g. Travis Yost) have said that Gryba has very much grown to be effective in a third pairing role. If he can actually do that competently, then he DEFINITELY brings size and a very nasty edge (just ask Eller’s face or Hall’s knee) to a team lacking both things.

    “Angst” – “OMG MARINCIN IS BETTER THIS WILL BE HORRIBLE I HATE HIM”

    PS.1. I have no hesitation on the Letestu/Gordon trade. This was suggested as an outcome as soon as TMc became coach. He doesn’t have a history of using a hard start line like Gordon’s, rather he rolls four lines, and so it was immediately surmised that Gordon might be heading out in favour of someone with a bit more offense. Since Letestu is sturdy in the faceoff dot, this one seems like a reasonable change in the nature of the team to suit the new (experienced, successful) coach. As players, they are likely a wash, but as far as the effectiveness of the team under the new coach, I’d say this ought to be treated as a reasonable (though slight) upgrade.

    PS.2. Lastly, I don’t know if we’ve seen enough of this to actually conclude it is a pattern on the part of Chia or (more likely) just a happenstance of players, but I find it interesting that all of Reinhart (BC), Letestu (AB), and Gryba (SK) are W Canadian lads.

  38. oliveoilers says:

    Woodguy: You buy out player X in order to make room for player Y from the other team.

    You trade assets A,B,C for player Y (3 for 1!!!)

    X has nothing to do with the trade.

    Never liked that X. Never saw him good. Thanks!

    (I now get that you meant the trades would require buyouts, not the other teams.)

  39. Richard S.S. says:

    Woodguy: Total cap hit = $65.2MM
    Add McD’s bonuses because its prudent and you are at $68.05
    Subtract Nikitin on a buyout (-$3MM) and you are at $65.05
    Assuming the 13th forward isn’t expensive you can add a $5MM D.
    You COULD add DrySaddle as the 13th D, but then you’re hoping he doesn’t hit all his bonuses.
    I have no idea what his bonus structure is, but I’d imagine Chia does and has probabilities on him hitting them to help make this decision

    On this site, use Lowetide’s numbers. He’s right because he considers everything that must be considered. (You missed Klefbom’ bonuses) Oops!. Trust in LT.

  40. Woodguy says:

    G Money,

    I find it interesting that all of Reinhart (BC), Letestu (AB), and Gryba (SK) are W Canadian lads.

    PETE CHEEARELLY! GOOD ONTARIO KID FROM NEPEAN!!! HE KNOWS WHO WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS!! ATTA GO PETE!!!!! *THUMBS UP*

  41. Woodguy says:

    Richard S.S.: On this site, use Lowetide’s numbers.He’s right because he considers everything that must be considered.(You missed Klefbom’ bonuses) Oops!. Trust in LT.

    I have no idea how to take this comment.

    There’s about 5 different ways.

    I’m confused.

    Also,

    You’re correct, Klef’s bonuses can total $350K.

    I have no idea how attainable they are.

    Low dollar total and unknown probability of attaining them so I left it off.

  42. jake70 says:

    Woodguy: Stauffer mentioned that some agents told him that the Oiler will be in the position where FAs will come on cheap one year contracts to play with McDavid/Hall/RNH/Eberle/DrySaddle to boost their numbers, take a run at a cup and sign long term for better money elsewhere the next year.

    A conveyor belt of good 27-30 year old forwards to flesh out the roster on cheap deals year after year would be amazing.

    So this would mean Jf Jacques (or equivalent) will never be seen on line 1 opening up a season? 🙂 (as much as LT would love to see that ..haha)

  43. Sugar Reijo says:

    G Money: Talbot

    Apparently Goal Buster was his nick in NY.

    A recent Twitter pic has him dressed thus:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CJ9JBnMUcAEbnes.jpg

  44. speeds says:

    re: The Gordon/Letestu moves:

    The Oilers went from a situation where they had Gordon under contract for one year at 3M to having Letestu/Korpikoski under contract for 2 years at 4.3M, and Letestu for a 3rd at 1.8M.

    I generally prefer the flexibility re: adding guys on one year deals to that strategy, doesn’t mean this won’t work out.

    Woodguy: Stauffer mentioned that some agents told him that the Oiler will be in the position where FAs will come on cheap one year contracts to play with McDavid/Hall/RNH/Eberle/DrySaddle to boost their numbers, take a run at a cup and sign long term for better money elsewhere the next year.

    A conveyor belt of good 27-30 year old forwards to flesh out the roster on cheap deals year after year would be amazing.

    Gotta fix the Dcorps for that to happen though.

    If this was what Chiarelli was looking to do, I am not entirely sure he’d have made the above moves. Is it possible he’s doing what he’s doing now and looking to switch gears once Purcell/Hendricks/Korpikoski’s deals run out? Sure, it’s also possible that he really likes locking 3/4 line guys up to 3/4yr deals, as he did with Kelly, Campbell, Paille, and now Letestu.

  45. G Money says:

    Cherryguy: PETE CHEEARELLY! GOOD ONTARIO KID FROM NEPEAN!!! HE KNOWS WHO WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS!! ATTA GO PETE!!!!! *THUMBS UP*

    Exactly!!!

  46. Lowetide says:

    One thing I wonder about Reinhart is his current trade value. If Edmonton decided to deal him today (which they won’t, this is just blue sky) what could they get in return? I suspect it’s fairly close to what they gave up but in a year the value will differ. By that I mean he’ll either have established himself a great deal more than he has so far, or he’ll be trying to break in to the NHL and his value will have gone down. It’s an important year for him.

  47. G Money says:

    Sugar Reijo: Apparently Goal Buster was his nick in NY.

    A recent Twitter pic has him dressed thus:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CJ9JBnMUcAEbnes.jpg

    Sweet. Though that left pic has him looking vaguely like Roboito. Hope we don’t have to pump his tires too much!

  48. spoiler says:

    Sugar Reijo: Apparently Goal Buster was his nick in NY.

    A recent Twitter pic has him dressed thus:

    https://pbs.twimg.com/media/CJ9JBnMUcAEbnes.jpg

    The mask in that pick looks reminiscent of one of Dan Bouchard’s Atlanta Flames masks.

  49. Klima's_Bucket says:

    What is the harm in dealing Schultz and a 2nd round pick and one of the logjam D like Simpson, Gernat, Musil to Chicago for Seabrook.
    Run Seabrook for the year and if you can’t sign him deal him at the deadline for a much better package than what you gave up to get him.

  50. Richard S.S. says:

    Woodguy,

    My apologies, I did not intend to offend. (I don’t disagree with most of your stuff.) I find it easier and more accurate to include all bonuses in Cap discussions at this time of Year. I don’t have any idea on how to judge what is easily attainable, and what is unlikely to attain. (Any unattained Bonuses just mean more monies available at or around Trade deadline time.) Carrying over monies for easily attained Bonuses to next year must never happen. Carrying over monies for unlikely attained Bonuses might be unavoidable. I just can’t judge actual Cap, so it’s just easier to include it all.

  51. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    What is the harm in dealing Schultz and a 2nd round pick and one of the logjam D like Simpson, Gernat, Musil to Chicago for Seabrook.
    Run Seabrook for the year and if you can’t sign him deal him at the deadline for a much better package than what you gave up to get him.

    For one, I don’t know that Chicago would ever touch that deal. What if you can sign him? 7Mx7? That’s crippling for years like 3/4-7

  52. Woodguy says:

    Richard S.S.,

    My apologies, I did not intend to offend.

    Your comment didn’t offend me.

    It confused me.

    Its all good.

    I just can’t judge actual Cap, so it’s just easier to include it all.

    Agreed.

  53. Soup Fascist says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    You are correct sir. I got my Dmen from Slovakia mixed up. My apologies to Marincin as well. I knew Marincin spent the bulk of his time in PG.

    Wrong for the first time ….. Again.

  54. Lowetide says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    What is the harm in dealing Schultz and a 2nd round pick and one of the logjam D like Simpson, Gernat, Musil to Chicago for Seabrook.
    Run Seabrook for the year and if you can’t sign him deal him at the deadline for a much better package than what you gave up to get him.

    The Schultz for Seabrook deal would have to include major assets beyond.

  55. speeds says:

    Lowetide: The Schultz for Seabrook deal would have to include major assets beyond.

    FWIW, Schultz is under team control for 3 years, Seabrook one.

    *edit*
    To elaborate, if CHI is trading for Schultz in the deal at all, they probably like him a fair bit. We know* that the Oilers like him a fair bit, so if CHI is trading for him they may value him more highly than some might expect, if they are convincing EDM to part with him given that it seems like EDM likes him a fair bit.

    * well, don’t really know, but assume

  56. stush18 says:

    Regarding the lander discussion yesterday.

    If lander 5×4/60 was so elite, why would we not continue to play him on the powerplay?

    Nuge, and likely mcdavid, are both awful at faceoffs. That’s why I see lander continuing to get primo minutes on the powerplay, cuz that first faceoff is huge. You lose it, and you kill 20-40 seconds off the powerplay.

    Also, other than poo, no one stands in front of the net.

    I understand mclellan might run a different powerplay, but regardless, I can’t see his powerplay minutes dropping too much.

    Does anyone have any information on 5×4/60 and its sustainability year over year? I’m assuming it’s quite irregular.

  57. JD¡™ David O'Connor's Reel says:

    Soup Fascist: Wrong for the first time ….. Again.

    Hay – weave awl bean their.

  58. stush18 says:

    Also from yesterday, wasn’t pitlick originally drafted as a centre?

    I seem to remember the comments being he would form a nice duo behind nuge with lander in the mix.

    Then he got moved to wing during his first year in OK, and never switched back?

    Am I remembering this right?

  59. G Money says:

    stush18: Does anyone have any information on 5×4/60 and its sustainability year over year? I’m assuming it’s quite irregular.

    This is a good question.

    I’m actually building (for my next NerdAlert) a simple model for predicting next years standings. At its core is an extension of a study I did previously, which is to look at what measures are sustainable from year to year and which aren’t.

    This would be at the team level, but once I build the code and the spreadsheets, if its not difficult to do, I can extend that to players and see what I get. (Or … someone could just do the study directly and save me the work!!)

  60. oliveoilers says:

    speeds: FWIW, Schultz is under team control for 3 years, Seabrook one.

    Not entirely under team control. He has a one year contract, after which he’s back to being an RFA, where he’s open to not being qualified, taken to arb, selecting arb (the important one), an offer sheet, or not signing his qualifying offer. So not totally under team control, but better than a UFA after this season.

  61. Ryan says:

    G Money: Strikes me that the second assist analysis is a bit of a stretch, rammed headlong into the law of small numbers.

    It’s 8 of 20 that you’re talking about.Small additions to any of the other numbers will cause huge swings in his 2A/60 ranking.

    Or to put it another way, the idea that normalizing his second assist count will somehow crater his point totals isn’t really true.Just a couple of points here or there that aren’t second assists, and he’d probably drop from league leader way down the list.

    Doesn’t seem to me that you can draw any supportable conclusions about the sustainability of his scoring based on a ratio which, being based on two such small numbers, is going to be extremely volatile.

    A more rigorous look would probably consider his AHL scoring, which, at over a ppg both of his last two seasons, would indicate that 0.5 ppg in the NHL is not an unreasonable target at all.

    Maybe McDavid reduces Lander’s PP time, maybe he doesn’t.As I noted above, my observation was that Lander was an important part of the PP2 because he stands in front of the net, but isn’t so unskilled a la Gazdic that he’s a liability in getting into the zone in the first place.

    Having some skill and yet showing some willingness to stand in the danger zone is not a penchant in excess supply on the Edmonton Oilers, and that won’t change with McSaviour running one of the two PPs.

    While NHLE’s are a useful tool to estimate production between leagues, the numbers are estimates based on the aggregate.

    In Anton Landers case, I think it would be silly to multiply his AHL PPG production by 0.44 (or whatever the latest conversion number is) and suggest that it has serious predictive value as you suggest.

    He’s a bottom of the roster player and not at all likely to play similar minutes in the AHL and NHL.

    As for his second assists, they’re part of the picture along with his 2 minutes of PP toi and a 5.65 (from recall I’m on an iPad) 5v4 /60… Again, I think it’s unlikely that he gets 2 min per game of power play time and I doubt he maintains that level of PP production.

    We’ve seen lots of Oilers have inflated scoring totals by virtue of second assists in the past. Tom Gilbert…Taylor Hall.in this case the sample is small, but it’s part of the picture.

    The Oilers have a lot of talented forwards, McDavid and a new coach. Given those factors, he might not get much power play time at all.

    Either a lot of factors would have to break right or Lander would have to take a giant step forward as a player for him to post anything near 0.5PPG this up coming season.

    It’s entirely possible that his offense flags and he doesn’t finish the season in the NHL.

    Have you looked at his Vollman?

  62. oliveoilers says:

    FWIW, I think Lander could be LT’s mythical Pisani.

  63. G Money says:

    JD¡™ David O’Connor’s Reel: Hay – weave awl bean their.

    Deer students,

    Win you are righting something four my class, bee shore that you are using the write homophones. Eye cannot tale ewe enough how unintelligent you look win you use the wrong word. Their are KNOW excuses four using the wrong words cause you have the education too no better. Your smart enough to no the differences butt you rush threw you’re work and make miss steaks.

    Your teacher

  64. Lowetide says:

    stush18:
    Also from yesterday, wasn’t pitlick originally drafted as a centre?

    I seem to remember the comments being he would form a nice duo behind nuge with lander in the mix.

    Then he got moved to wing during his first year in OK, and never switched back?

    Am I remembering this right?

    Yes, but every coach Medicine Hat moving forward played him on the wing.

  65. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy:
    G Money,

    I find it interesting that all of Reinhart (BC), Letestu (AB), and Gryba (SK) are W Canadian lads.

    PETE CHEEARELLY! GOOD ONTARIO KID FROM NEPEAN!!! HE KNOWS WHO WINS CHAMPIONSHIPS!! ATTA GO PETE!!!!! *THUMBS UP*

    This is disgraceful.

    Elliotte Friedman doesn’t sound anything like this.

    Up your game, WG.

  66. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: The Schultz for Seabrook deal would have to include major assets beyond.

    With Patrick Sharp and Brandon Saad already moved out, I don’t think Chicago has the assets left to make that deal.

    ….

    😉

  67. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Sekera-Schultz has been explored as an offensive minute tandem, but what about bringing back Lubo?

    Partner Klefbom with Gryba, and Schultz with Lubo in a soft minutes/offensive/heavy PP role?

    Lubo’s passing/possession metrics still stellar. Schultz has a problem getting the puck into the offensive end and Lubo’s in the 80th+ percentile in entry assists/60. Health is biggest concern

  68. G Money says:

    Ryan,

    Still sounds like confirmation bias to me, to be honest. Your analysis reads like you’ve decided he’s going to backslide, and you’re looking for evidence to support it.

    Bringing up the Vollman is an example of that. It shows Lander at dead even on his zone starts, and right in the second tier (not sheltered but not facing the toughs, what Vollman calls “less sheltered”) for QoC. And despite a decent TOI, comes just shy of holding his own via shot metrics (-2.85).

    To my mind, that’s about what you’d expect from a player at his stage and his role. There’s certainly no way I can read that and conclude that he’s somehow getting cherry zone starts or opposition (something you implied previously), because he isn’t.

    Realistically, I expect him to move up the chart in QoC AND improve the colour of that bubble, reflecting both his confidence in his game as well as an improvement in the team game. Anything else would be a disappointment.

    The weakest evidence (by far) being the second assist stuff, which is such a small volatile number that it has no meaning that I can ascribe – none at all.

    At the same time, the reason it seems like confirmation bias to me is that you’re more than willing to ignore Lander’s age, his pattern of development, his success in the AHL, his success in the worlds – and of course, his actual decent results this last year in the NHL.

    Could he backslide next year?

    Of course he could.

    Could he also do better next year?

    Why yes. Yes he could. Young players on his development track often do. That’s the part you don’t seem to be able to give any credence to.

    Personally, given where Lander was this year, and given that there are both reasons to believe that he could do better as well as reasons he could do worse next year, I’d say my reasonable expectation is that he’ll be right on par next year with where he was this year.

    Which, as I noted yesterday, is as a solid 3C, defensively aware, capable of playing with skill when required, and likely putting up something in the neighborhood of 35 points.

    You can label that as irrational exuberance about the player, but your counter-argument as you’ve made it so far I just don’t think is that well supported.

  69. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    oliveoilers:
    FWIW, I think Lander could be LT’s mythical Pisani.

    Lander (if Nelson’s treatment of him is correct) is a center.

    The “Pisani” is a 2-way winger… what Eakins wanted Lander to be. The whole, “He’s going to have to be versatile” thing.

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2014/03/17/with-jesse-joensuu-out-edmonton-oilers-give-anton-lander-longer-look-see

    Which isn’t to say Lander isn’t versatile… it’s to say that Lander is not the “Pisani” you’re looking for.

  70. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide: Yes, but every coach Medicine Hat moving forward played him on the wing.

    Also, the sheer number of players “drafted as a center” is astronomical.

    Eberle was “drafted as a center” which tells you the word “center” gets attached to basically every junior-aged forward at one time or another.

  71. admiralmark says:

    G Money: This is a good question. I’m actually building (for my next NerdAlert) a simple model for predicting next years standings. At its core is an extension of a study I did previously, which is to look at what measures are sustainable from year to year and which aren’t.This would be at the team level, but once I build the code and the spreadsheets, if its not difficult to do, I can extend that to players and see what I get. (Or … someone could just do the study directly and save me the work!!)

    I’ll go out on a limb and predict that the 14-15 Oilers compared to the 15-16 Oilers will end up being an outlier in this study. 🙂

  72. Messier11edm says:

    I understand the “angst”. We’ve been in an extended bad dream, unfortunately it wasn’t a dream.

    I doubt PC is done dealing, but if he were I would be fine with it.

    We didn’t have an NHL calibre coach, associate coach, or GM last year. We may see players play and produce differently than what we’ve been accustomed to, and I’d rather confirm that than prematurely deal away key assets.

  73. RexLibris says:

    bassguy:
    hey Rex, one of my favorite reads is the Deptford Trilogy… I find him similar to John Irving and how they can weave a tale although the master of that of course is Dickens.,cheers!

    The Deptford trilogy is interesting.

    He has his Cornish trilogy as well that introduced me to his writing.

    Rebel Angels, What’s Bred in the Bone (still one of my favourites) and Lyre of Orpheus (struggled with that one and never really got into it).

    He remains, in my opinion, one of this country’s finest writers. His work has fallen out of fashion and he has been misinterpreted by modern audiences as being somewhat mysoginistic, which is utterly false when one reads his work as his female characters are often put on an equal level, morally, intellectually and sexually, as any of his male characters.

    He wrote volumes and it is heavily tinged by his Old Ontario upbringing and his time as a Newspaper Man. Murther and Walking Spirits, the Cunning Man and his later works stand up just as well as anything he did earlier.

    If you haven’t read his Marchbanks papers I would highly recommend it.

    In fact, I’d recommend it to the entire group here.

    Dry wit, biting sarcasm and a superb tongue-in-cheek point of view written in the lost art form of a diary entry from his alter-ego, Samuel Marchbanks, a curmudgeonly gentleman of questionable educational provenance and Upper Canada breeding at its most colourful.

  74. spoiler says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Lander (if Nelson’s treatment of him is correct) is a center.

    The “Pisani” is a 2-way winger… what Eakins wanted Lander to be. The whole, “He’s going to have to be versatile” thing.

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2014/03/17/with-jesse-joensuu-out-edmonton-oilers-give-anton-lander-longer-look-see

    Which isn’t to say Lander isn’t versatile… it’s to say that Lander is not the “Pisani” you’re looking for.

    Pisani played C in Junior, and on a line between Moreau and Penner for awhile, IIRC. Might have been the closest thing to a utility infielder we had back in the day, which is what Eakins was intimating Lander is. Hard to say where Lander will play once Draisaitl is established (or Drai for that matter). But Lander might well be Pisani with face off skills.

  75. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: Stauffer mentioned that some agents told him that the Oiler will be in the position where FAs will come on cheap one year contracts to play with McDavid/Hall/RNH/Eberle/DrySaddle to boost their numbers, take a run at a cup and sign long term for better money elsewhere the next year.

    A conveyor belt of good 27-30 year old forwards to flesh out the roster on cheap deals year after year would be amazing.

    Gotta fix the Dcorps for that to happen though.

    That would be nice, although it remains to be seen if this is a realistic, and workable, practice.

    I recall the same thing being said about the Penguins six or seven years ago.

    The areas that could adversely impact are development if the mercenaries block internal prospects from moving up and team chemistry if you have players who come in looking for the SC ring but don’t adapt well to the team.

    This isn’t to say it is a bad idea, because I’m fine with having a strong core of players who set the tone and do the heavy lifting and air-lifting in some good veterans who can help chop wood and carry water, but I’ve also seen FAs chase championships on short-term deals for decades now and it rarely works out (Hossa being the exception that helps establish the rule).

  76. Ducey says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Lander (if Nelson’s treatment of him is correct) is a center.

    The “Pisani” is a 2-way winger… what Eakins wanted Lander to be. The whole, “He’s going to have to be versatile” thing.

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2014/03/17/with-jesse-joensuu-out-edmonton-oilers-give-anton-lander-longer-look-see

    Which isn’t to say Lander isn’t versatile… it’s to say that Lander is not the “Pisani” you’re looking for.

    I’ll take a Marchant.

  77. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    spoiler: Might have been the closest thing to a utility infielder we had back in the day, which is what Eakins was intimating Lander is

    No. It’s what Eakins said Lander had to be to stick in the NHL.

    Nelson found an NHL spot for him as a Center.

  78. Woodguy says:

    G Money:
    Ryan,

    Still sounds like confirmation bias to me, to be honest.Your analysis reads like you’ve decided he’s going to backslide, and you’re looking for evidence to support it.

    Bringing up the Vollman is an example of that.It shows Lander at dead even on his zone starts, and right in the second tier (not sheltered but not facing the toughs, what Vollman calls “less sheltered”) for QoC.And despite a decent TOI, comes just shy of holding his own via shot metrics (-2.85).

    To my mind, that’s about what you’d expect from a player at his stage and his role.There’s certainly no way I can read that and conclude that he’s somehow getting cherry zone starts or opposition (something you implied previously), because he isn’t.

    Realistically, I expect him to move up the chart in QoC AND improve the colour of that bubble, reflecting both his confidence in his game as well as an improvement in the team game.Anything else would be a disappointment.

    The weakest evidence (by far) being the second assist stuff, which is such a small volatile number that it has no meaning that I can ascribe – none at all.

    At the same time, the reason it seems like confirmation bias to me is that you’re more than willing to ignore Lander’s age, his pattern of development, his success in the AHL, his success in the worlds – and of course, his actual decent results this last year in the NHL.

    Could he backslide next year?

    Of course he could.

    Could he also do better next year?

    Why yes.Yes he could.Young players on his development track often do.That’s the part you don’t seem to be able to give any credence to.

    Personally, given where Lander was this year, and given that there are both reasons to believe that he could do better as well as reasons he could do worse next year, I’d say my reasonable expectation is that he’ll be right on par next year with where he was this year.

    Which, as I noted yesterday, is as a solid 3C, defensively aware, capable of playing with skill when required, and likely putting up something in the neighborhood of 35 points.

    You can label that as irrational exuberance about the player, but your counter-argument as you’ve made it so far I just don’t think is that well supported.

    Let’s not forget that McLellen also juggled his lines so Hall-Crosby-Eberle could avoid playing against Lander after the first period at the WC.

    McLellen will know who he is and hopefully is informed on his 5v4 numbers from last year.

    As others mentioned he is one of two Oilers who can play the corner/net front 5v4 role well (the other being Poliot)

    He’ll probably roll 4F and 1D on the PP (due to the plethora of scoring forwards) so there should be room for him.

  79. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: Let’s not forget that McLellen also juggled his lines so Hall-Crosby-Eberle could avoid playing against Lander after the first period at the WC.

    Hall needed shelter from Lander.

    Man, that takes a minute to process.

  80. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: (due to the plethora of scoring forwards)

    Would you say he has a “plethora of pinatas”?

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tyBUMntP6DI

  81. spoiler says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: No. It’s what Eakins said Lander had to be to stick in the NHL.

    Nelson found an NHL spot for him as a Center.

    And it still might be what he needs to do. Nothing has changed in that regard. Nelson, no longer the coach, found him a spot at C on a team with 2.

    Edit: and the quote from Eakins did include “center”.

  82. spoiler says:

    I’m as hopeful as everyone about Lander, and have been pimping him for a 2C role next to Hall until McDavid gets up to speed, but I also think he needs another season to have an established level of ability, as LT likes to say.

    I don’t think anyone can be too sure of what he is right now. He might, as Olive has written, end up being an up-and-down-the-line-up winger/center. He might be a 2, 3, or 4C. He might be a 4C on the Oil but a 3C for someone else…

    I don’t think we yet know, but I’m looking forward to finding out and I hope T-Mc puts him in a position to succeed.

  83. oliveoilers says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: No. It’s what Eakins said Lander had to be to stick in the NHL.

    Nelson found an NHL spot for him as a Center.

    Agreed, though from Eakins, it sounded more like a threat than an honest intent of finding a young talented guy, who was too good for the AHL, a place on the team.

  84. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    spoiler: Edit: and the quote from Eakins did include “center”.

    Yes.

    But, either there is a difference btw

    a versatile 2-way winger (say, “Pisani” or “Hendricks”) who can pitch in at center, and

    a 2-way, depth center.

    Or, there isn’t.

    The point of the “Pisani” as I understand it is to distinguish the Hendrickses of the world from the Ryan Joneses.

    The Anton Landers of the world aren’t part of this conversation.

    They belong to the “depth, 2-way center” (say, Manny Malholtra) vs. “skilled, needs to be sheltered center” (say, Gagner).

    It’s just a different conversation altogether. Though they have some obvious overlapping, as do the players and their skillsets.

  85. Ryan says:

    G Money:
    Ryan,

    Still sounds like confirmation bias to me, to be honest.Your analysis reads like you’ve decided he’s going to backslide, and you’re looking for evidence to support it.

    Bringing up the Vollman is an example of that.It shows Lander at dead even on his zone starts, and right in the second tier (not sheltered but not facing the toughs, what Vollman calls “less sheltered”) for QoC.And despite a decent TOI, comes just shy of holding his own via shot metrics (-2.85).

    To my mind, that’s about what you’d expect from a player at his stage and his role.There’s certainly no way I can read that and conclude that he’s somehow getting cherry zone starts or opposition (something you implied previously), because he isn’t.

    Realistically, I expect him to move up the chart in QoC AND improve the colour of that bubble, reflecting both his confidence in his game as well as an improvement in the team game.Anything else would be a disappointment.

    The weakest evidence (by far) being the second assist stuff, which is such a small volatile number that it has no meaning that I can ascribe – none at all.

    At the same time, the reason it seems like confirmation bias to me is that you’re more than willing to ignore Lander’s age, his pattern of development, his success in the AHL, his success in the worlds – and of course, his actual decent results this last year in the NHL.

    Could he backslide next year?

    Of course he could.

    Could he also do better next year?

    Why yes.Yes he could.Young players on his development track often do.That’s the part you don’t seem to be able to give any credence to.

    Personally, given where Lander was this year, and given that there are both reasons to believe that he could do better as well as reasons he could do worse next year, I’d say my reasonable expectation is that he’ll be right on par next year with where he was this year.

    Which, as I noted yesterday, is as a solid 3C, defensively aware, capable of playing with skill when required, and likely putting up something in the neighborhood of 35 points.

    You can label that as irrational exuberance about the player, but your counter-argument as you’ve made it so far I just don’t think is that well supported.

    As a poster, I’ve long acknowledged that you’re one of my favorites here…

    However, with that being said you can be one hell of an irritating person to try to debate at topic with. 🙂

    In the past, you’ve shown a blatant tendency to liberally use straw men arguments with me.

    More importantly, this recent discussion just keeps shifting direction…

    As an example…

    In one post, you’ll proclaim that I should have used NHLE’s to project Landers production next season… I’ll reply that’s is unlikely to be of great predictive value for a variety of reasons.

    You’ll neither acknowledge that you agree with me nor challenge my argument.

    Instead, you’ll just cast aspersions about my analysis like this:

    Still sounds like confirmation bias to me, to be honest.Your analysis reads like you’ve decided he’s going to backslide, and you’re looking for evidence to support it.

    That’s your rather subjective opinion which doesn’t offer much to carry the conversation forward.

    Other than calculating Lander’s PPG last season or suggesting his NHLE’s from the AHL would be useful to project his production last season, I haven’t seen anything in the way of analysis from yourself.


    To my mind, that’s about what you’d expect from a player at his stage and his role.There’s certainly no way I can read that and conclude that he’s somehow getting cherry zone starts or opposition (something you implied previously), because he isn’t.
    Realistically, I expect him to move up the chart in QoC AND improve the colour of that bubble, reflecting both his confidence in his game as well as an improvement in the team game.Anything else would be a disappointment.
    The weakest evidence (by far) being the second assist stuff, which is such a small volatile number that it has no meaning that I can ascribe – none at all.
    At the same time, the reason it seems like confirmation bias to me is that you’re more than willing to ignore Lander’s age, his pattern of development, his success in the AHL, his success in the worlds – and of course, his actual decent results this last year in the NHL.
    Could he backslide next year?
    Of course he could.
    Could he also do better next year?
    Why yes.Yes he could.Young players on his development track often do.That’s the part you don’t seem to be able to give any credence to.
    Personally, given where Lander was this year, and given that there are both reasons to believe that he could do better as well as reasons he could do worse next year, I’d say my reasonable expectation is that he’ll be right on par next year with where he was this year.
    Which, as I noted yesterday, is as a solid 3C, defensively aware, capable of playing with skill when required, and likely putting up something in the neighborhood of 35 points.
    You can label that as irrational exuberance about the player, but your counter-argument as you’ve made it so far I just don’t think is that well supported.

    Cue your classic wall of text rant where you vaguely criticize me for my argument not being very well supported while you’ve offered absolutely nothing other than ranting your own opinion yourself.

  86. Randaman says:

    Pouzar,

    That all depends on how sharp of a turn you expect.
    I don’t think the turn north really picks up momentum until next year. I am not saying I don’t expect significant improvement this year but we still have to shed more dead weight and let Nurse, Reinhart and Drai develop until the trade deadline unless they absolutely blow the doors off at camp.

  87. spoiler says:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xWLddlTthm4

    Not often you hear a professional sports commentator say “Holy shit” while broadcasting but in this case it was probably appropriate.

  88. John Chambers says:

    Lowetide: The Schultz for Seabrook deal would have to include major assets beyond.

    Here’s a crack at a deal that might work.

    Assuming we can trade away Nikitin or buy him out first …

    Brent Seabrook, Brian Bickell, and a 2nd rd pick to Edm for :

    Justin Schultz, Lauri Korpikoski, and a 2016 1st rd pick with Edm retaining $1M of Schultz salary.

    Chicago nets $4.5M in cap savings as well as a first rounder and right-shot defenseman.

    Edmonton gets a true top pair defender and an overpaid sandpaper winger.

    I’d make that deal assuming a 6-7 year deal at ~$6.5 annually is what it would take to re-sign Seabrook.

  89. spoiler says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Sounds like you are arguing really hard for a strict reading of a metaphorical comparison.

    Lighten up, Francis.

    Pisani was versatile, smart and two way.

    I didn’t take Olive’s comment to mean much more than that.

    Lander might be that guy. (It might be at C, it might be at W.)

    I thought he made a fair point.

  90. oliveoilers says:

    spoiler:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Sounds like you are arguing really hard for a strict reading of a metaphorical comparison.

    Lighten up, Francis.

    Pisani was versatile, smart and two way.

    I didn’t take Olive’s comment to mean much more than that.

    Lander might be that guy. (It might be at C, it might be at W.)

    I thought he made a fair point.

    You’re right, I was being metaphorical, but Rom brings up some very valid points too. I posted that to stimulate discourse, and thus it has been stimulated!

    I know we tend to frown upon, or even deny the existence of those dreaded ‘intangibles’ on this blog. We use flippant phrases such as ‘gritensity’ and ‘eye glow/60’ to basically say that everything that has an effect can be measured, even if we haven’t figured out how it manifests itself within the sport of hockey.

    I do believe that some tend to be looking for the holy grail or missing link or whatever, that once discovered, will tie in every cause and effect and interaction. We literally wouldn’t have to play a game, much like the feudal Chinese lords who would march and counter-march their armies against each other without a drop of blood being shed.

    In summary, it’s Sunday afternoon, the sun is over the yard arm and it’s beer o’clock. Time to kick back with a cold one and check in here every hour or so!

  91. Revolved says:

    Woodguy: Let’s not forget that McLellen also juggled his lines so Hall-Crosby-Eberle could avoid playing against Lander after the first period at the WC.

    McLellen will know who he is and hopefully is informed on his 5v4 numbers from last year.

    As others mentioned he is one of two Oilers who can play the corner/net front 5v4 role well (the other being Poliot)

    He’ll probably roll 4F and 1D on the PP (due to the plethora of scoring forwards) so there should be room for him.

    This is why I have so much faith in Lander’s ability to show up and be productive next year. He is tough to play against, and that is something the Oilers lack at centre.

    I hope to see his Vollman bubble move straight up, as McClellan line matches more than zone matching. This would give RNH a little more room to move, only having to play the Getzlaf’s and Backes’ of the world every second shift.

    His offence is the most legitimate concern, but I am only worried about that if he is given none of our skill wingers to work with. People may not like my suggestion of pairing him with Hall, but that line killed it up and down the ice, even when Miller was the third!

  92. Bootstrap Effexor says:

    On this one, Bruce might wish to hitch his half-moons.

    The challenge now is surrounding that core group with a supporting cast, then growing all of those pieces into a cohesive hole.

    Eight years, one W two many, I’d like you to meet eight years, a W too fe (and far bet … oh bother).

  93. godot10 says:

    Eakins was only good at judging two things:
    1) Whether his hair was coiffed correctly.
    2) Whether there were water drops on his $1000 suit.

    He was not good at judging anything about hockey.

  94. Bootstrap Effexor says:

    Things really ARE looking up for Edmonton Oilers, this time it’s actually true, I promise!

    Probably most people in management or sales are familiar with the expression: The Lead Dog Has the Best View.

    Turns out it’s also true for the firefighter ladder-rescue squad, and other bottom-rungers.

    Geese have this figured out, but for some reason dogs and humans are a lot slower on the uptake.

    Horses, too, given half a chance.

    Review: Thelma & Louise, in which Arwen flees the Illinois State Police.

  95. Gret99zky says:

    Caution: Anton Lander is recently married and the honeymoon is over!

    https://twitter.com/Landie51

  96. oliveoilers says:

    Bootstrap Effexor,

    So The Blues Brothers is Battle of Five Armies?

  97. G Money says:

    Ryan: However, with that being said you can be one hell of an irritating person to try to debate at topic with.

    Mission accomplished!

    I quite enjoy our debates, they force me to up my game. But I also think you’re irritated because you know you’re wrong. 😀

    Ryan: Cue your classic wall of text rant where you vaguely criticize me for my argument not being very well supported while you’ve offered absolutely nothing other than ranting your own opinion yourself.

    Let me try again:

    There is a very modest amount of concrete evidence to work with here. So my approach is to take a balance-of-evidence approach. His age. His progression. His AHL history. His WHC. His actual NHL performance, including fancystats, seen-im-goods, and usage (I’ve provided the details before, I won’t this time).

    All of which together have some down arrows and some (more) up arrows.

    Based on this balance of evidence, it’s pretty reasonable to think Lander will again be (with perhaps some modest improvement) what he was last year. And that’s what I think.

    To reiterate, based on a combination of: Age. Progression. Visuals. Fancystats. AHL. WHC. NHL. Not any one, because no one or two of them provide a compelling argument one way or the other. More up arrows than down arrows. Balance of evidence.

    You are claiming that he’ll be in for a major downturn. You need to supply evidence for this, not I.

    You’ve articulated the down arrows – I acknowledge them, but in my estimation they are both small and weak. The PP issue is relevant, but assumes that his role (which by observation was high and significant and should be required next year) will disappear. The 2nd assist calculation is a ratio of tiny numbers and IMO not valid demonstration of anything at all.

    You can disagree with that, but all you’ve done is complain about my wall of text (which refutes your assertions quite handily I would say), and also haven’t provided anything additional in support of the “downturn” side, other than pointing out that downturns have happened before.

    You’ve also ignored the up arrows. Much of that data is subjective, yes, this is true. But the AHL equivalencies (flawed as they are) are not subjective, and I would suggest they are at least as valid as any counterpoints you’ve raise.

    NHL points aren’t subjective either.

    So as far as ‘up arrows’ go in the balance of evidence, there are more of them, and though none of them are individually definitive, they are not data points to be cast aside lightly.

    Since you do appear to have cast all positive evidence aside, in favour of (much) weaker negative evidence, I suspect confirmation bias. Sorry. But I do. That’s what confirmation bias looks like.

    You’re mistaking my stance if you think I have some sort of skin in the Lander game. I don’t. Hope he does well but don’t have any strong expectations either way. Balance of evidence suggests a continuance of his path from last year. Wouldn’t surprise me if he goes either way, up or down, from there, but a big move strikes me as unlikely. That’s it. That’s my whole shocking outlook.

    That said, whatever stance you have (agree or disagree), I *will* call out faulty reasoning or misleading statistics where I see them.

    And I did.

    You, my friend, don’t get a pass just cause I like you!

  98. Really? says:

    At what time today does the Buyout Window close?

  99. slopitch says:

    Speaking of true stories …

    @travisyost:
    If you don’t think team effects tarnish player reps, look at Taylor Hall. One of best wingers in world, not close. Yet here we are, LRT.

  100. bassguy says:

    Hi again Rex, I have read most of the novels you mentioned…agree with your take on him as a writer..I will make sure to look into”marchbank papers”

  101. Lowetide says:

    Really?:
    At what time today does the Buyout Window close?

    No idea. Happy hour is in 12 minutes though.

  102. Oil2Oilers says:

    Lowetide: No idea. Happy hour is in 12 minutes though.

    Damn I started early again

  103. Really? says:

    Touche! Obviously that is far more important in the overall scheme of things. Enjoy.

  104. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    spoiler:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Sounds like you are arguing really hard for a strict reading of a metaphorical comparison.

    Lighten up, Francis.

    Pisani was versatile, smart and two way.

    I didn’t take Olive’s comment to mean much more than that.

    Lander might be that guy. (It might be at C, it might be at W.)

    I thought he made a fair point.

    yes. yes.

    If I was biting heads off, this “calm down chicken little” routine might make sense.

    I just see the “Pisani” role as belonging to a different conversation than the one Lander is suited for.

    The current options for the “Pisani” are (IMO and in no particular order): Korpikoski, Hendricks, Pitlick, Klinkhammer, Pakarinen.

  105. admiralmark says:

    Lowetide: No idea. Happy hour is in 12 minutes though.

    You’re acting as though what happens during this buyout window isn’t going to make or break the year for the Oilers?! 😛

  106. Doug McLachlan says:

    A 48 hour window that opens on Saturday closes on Monday – but if no hint of waivers, probably not happening.

  107. matt says:

    Trust. It has been leaking out of the franchise like air out of a balloon since 2005. Scrappy fast teams that punched above their weight and delivered outstanding playoff hockey against Dallas (always Dallas) built trust. Getting Pronger and Peca and Spacek and Tarnstrom and Roloson and Sampsonov built some trust. Out-coaching Detroit in round 1 built some trust. But, as you imply, Lowe got lucky that Roloson worked out so well, after ignoring goal-tending all season. The Pronger trade, the Spacek non-re-signing, targeting Penner….fast forward up to the musical coaching chair and going with Arcobello and Draisatl as key centre components. This has not been a franchise that does smart things. The standings reflect that fact. This has been a franchise that not only tries to get deals on the cheap, but plans that way (Comrie!), and acts astonished in public when something less than the best case scenario plays out (if I’m wrong, and the Lowe regime was not a bunch of raging idiots, then they are merely supremely unlucky and repeatedly publicly dishonest).

    So. Angst. Has Chiarelli earned our trust yet? Or are we entitled to think that non-action reflects continued gambling, betting the farm on the best case scenario? I think he has a ways to go before we can trust him to wait for the home run pitch instead of opting for a sober clear-eyed buy out and a pair of quality B signings.

  108. Mr. D. says:

    Don’t expect a buyout. A trade may get some assets back and put on waivers for a salary dump if they are picked up. Bottom line a buyout is a last resort.

  109. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: No idea. Happy hour is in 12 minutes though.

    Did the Riders lose again?

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