LOCK, STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS

We may (or may not) have the Oilers roster for training camp surrounded, so let’s have a look (for the first time this year) at the three training camp categories, who fits where and discuss any possible overlap.

THE SURE OILERS (19)

oilers for certainAs things currently stand, the ‘sure Oilers’ is a fairly long list. The club has 19 of 23 roster spots locked up (82.6%) and the next group is basically fighting over one goalie spot, (possibly) one defensive opportunity and three forwards depending on how they proceed with  Luke Gazdic. We should remember that IR will probably play a role—the injured list could get a workout this winter—and of course Peter Chiarelli is very active in-season with roster turnover.

THE UNCERTAIN OILERS (12)

uncertain oilersUp the middle this is a pretty nice group. I’ll guess the Oilers move north with Scrivens, Davidson, Gazdic and Klinkhammer but that’s a guess of course. Question: If they keep Nilsson, Reinhart, Gazdic and Draisaitl would you be surprised?

THE DISTANT BELLS (31)

DISTANT BELLSI can’t see anyone from this list making the club out of camp. We may see a few of these guys for a cup of coffee or if injuries hit, but the training camp decisions are pretty easy to make this fall (after the end of the roster F’s, the crazy D and the backup goalie).

That’s 62 names, last year I estimated 65 and last season there were 29 in the rookie tournament and 38 at the main camp. So, we’re in the range but there may be some late additions from college grads, junior kids looking for some training camp experience with an NHL team, and of course NHL veterans getting invited on tryouts.

We wait.

WHAT I THINK I THINK

I’ve looked at Todd McLellan’s Sharks teams a lot and he’s fond of bundling his stars together and then unpacking them. When he ran Hertl-Thornton-Pavelski the thunder of the Gods could be heard to the other side of the ocean and for me that’s the kind of template he might use in Edmonton. What might it look like? Well, we’ve (I’ve) been operating under the assumption we see the following:

  • Pouliot—Nuge—Eberle
  • Hall—McDavid—Purcell
  • Korpikoski—Lander—Yakupov

Remembering that McLellan likes to rattle the lines, we can expect the music to be on shuffle for much of the season. In my looks at McLellan’s usage of young forwards, he seems to have an interesting name in the mix most seasons:

  • In 2014-15, Melker Karlsson’s EV minutes (720 minutes, 57 seconds) found him playing with Joe Pavelski (497 minutes) and Joe Thornton (459 minutes, 17 seconds). That’s exceptional coverage for a rookie forward.
  • In 2013-14, Tomas Hertl’s EV minutes (472 minutes) included 380 with Joe Thornton and 237 with (then forward) Brent Burns.
  • In 2013-14, Matt Nieto’s 812 EV minutes saw him play with Patrick Marleau (353) and Tommy Wingels (278) as a freshman.

Who could we see as this year’s Melker Karlsson? There are a surprising number of candidates, including Andrew Miller, Iiro Pakarinen, Tyler Pitlick and even names like Leon Draisaitl and Anton Slepyshev. Sometimes it’s easy to forget, but things we think we know are still miles from what we know we know. Training camp looks fairly straightforward, but you never know.

IF I WERE KING

Every once in awhile someone will ask “why do you have this fellow slotted here” and most of the time—especially with a new coach coming in—this blog is trying to guess along with the GM and or coach. The lines and pairings I post day-to-day are usually guesses, because honestly opinions are for discussion in the comments section. However, I do like to post something about my feeling on things once in awhile, so today I’ll pass along my “If I were the king” opening night lineup.

  • Pouliot—Nuge—Eberle: The silver lining in Hall’s injury a year ago is this line. Nuge is emerging as the man he’s going to be, Eberle’s hands are fast as lightning, and Pouliot is an effective winger with these two. Splitting up the $6 million men was always going to be necessary but it’s a tribute to both RNH and Jordan Eberle that they appear able to play against the best opposition and be competitive (or beat the brains out of the soft underbelly).
  • Hall—McDavid—Yakupov: There was a moment in the before time when Hall and (I believe) Gagner told Yakupov to find open ice and they’d find him. And they did! I’m not saying this line runs every shift opening night in St. Louis but I do believe this is a scratch McLellan will itch and I’d love to see it. Chaos? Hell yes! The entire coaching staff may need valium but then again if this line has the puck there’s going to be magic.
  • Korpikoski—Lander—Purcell: I have high hopes for Lander and two veterans beside the young center might give McLellan a line that can play it any way required. This might not deliver a lot offensively but a third line with both PK and PP options is a nice luxury.
  • Hendricks—Letestu—Pitlick: A nice fourth line with at least two men who can move up in the lineup as required, and Pitlick has some nice things I believe McLellan will value.

There’s high octane on the 2line and it’s the only one you’d have to protect. I like this group and do understand the risks of Yakupov (and suspect we won’t see that line as much as any of us might want, because coaches are risk averse for a reason).

  • Sekera—Fayne: This is the best available for the tough minutes, there’s zero reason to change it.
  • Nikitin—Schultz: I prefer using Klefbom with a more severe ZS pairing and Nikitin has some offensive chops. It’s a risk based on last season but if you have the man on your roster and he’s healthy, employ him.
  • Klefbom—Gryba: Oilers badly need another pairing who can both take defensive zone starts and move the puck up. Gryba is a little inexperienced for the role but the best available option.

wood photo

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Today at 10, TSN1260 and it’s going to be fun!

  • Steve Lansky, Big Mouth Sports. Are the Blue Jays Canada’s team again?
  • Corey Graham, Oil Kings PBP. We get our first glimpse of this year’s group.
  • Antony Bent, FC Edmonton. Eddies play this weekend, plus EPL and end transfer window.
  • Corey Pronman, ESPN. We chat about Oilers prospects at 11:05.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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49 Responses to "LOCK, STOCK AND TWO SMOKING BARRELS"

  1. zatch says:

    I worry looking at Purcell with McDavid Hall. His foot speed is…not even close. But it’s not everything.

    This roster is so, so close to being a good one, but it’s not there. That D is still…ugh. Wish the RW was better too.

  2. Bag of Pucks says:

    Natalie Wood. What a great way to start our Friday. Well played sir.

  3. Lowetide says:

    Zatch: The roster is awful through our current lens. Maybe Nikitin is healthy and maybe Nurse has a perfect TC and maybe Schultz worked on the right things over the summer. If even one of those things is true then we’re in a better spot.

    Now, there’s also a chance someone we’re counting on hit the couch all summer.

  4. Lowetide says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Natalie Wood. What a great way to start our Friday. Well played sir.

    Natalie Wood. Lordy.

  5. Bag of Pucks says:

    Lowetide: Natalie Wood. Lordy.

    Don’t know what Robert Wagner and Christopher Walken were up to on that boat that night, but whatever happened, the world was robbed of a great beauty. Tragic.

  6. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Definitely think one of Pakarinen or Miller could be their Melker Karlsson, with McDavid being their meal ticket. Miller’s ability to keep up with that line or Pakarinen’s volume shooting. It’d probably take until McDavid is comfortable without some sheltering first.

    Hall-McDavid-Yakupov might make music in the offensive zone, but I’m not sure how well they’d get it out of their own zone. Either heavy OZS that line or for now play them with Purcell. All that line will need is someone with a nice outlet pass out of the zone to Hall-McD and their crazy speed

  7. Woodguy says:

    Klefbom—Gryba: Oilers badly need another pairing who can both take defensive zone starts and move the puck up. Gryba is a little inexperienced for the role but the best available option.

    I like the idea of this pairing.

    Gryba played toughish minutes with the worst zone starts on OTT last year, so it a row he knows how to hoe.

    Klef is becoming very good at moving the puck north either with his stick or feet and can play vs better players without drowning.

    That gives the Oilers 2 sets of Dmen where your sphincter isn’t on auto-pucker when the opposition gains the zone.

    That also treats Schultz more like Yandle in terms of assignments and that’s a good thing.

  8. 5inatrailer says:

    Do you think this is the year the Oilers turn into Hatchet Harry or are we poor Smiffy again?

    Hatchet harry is a man you pay what you owe.

  9. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Woodguy,

    I also like the idea of pairing Schultz with Reinhart longer term. You never know of course, but that seems like a duo that could have some balance. My recollection of Reinhart is that he has a good (not elite or anything) first pass, which would be his contribution to moving the puck forward. Otherwise, it would be the classic offense/defense pairing.

    In the meantime, the idea of NN/Schultz scares me a great deal. Only thing worse, and we know this, is Ference/Schultz.

  10. Lowetide says:

    Bohologo:
    LT, I think one of my comments is locked up in the moderation penalty box-too many Russian web site links, I suspect.

    Sadly, nothing is in the pending file.

  11. RPG says:

    I love that movie, it’s easily on my top ten list. Though the movie pains my wife, I think it’ll have to be turned on after the Eskimo victory.

  12. Lowetide says:

    Boho: Excellent stuff!

  13. G Money says:

    Woodguy,

    Heh heh. The Edmonton Oilers: 8 years of auto-pucker

    I like your reasoning about the Sek-Fay and Klef-Gry pairings. Those may very well turn out to be a sturdy, non-puckering top 4.

    But even against soft opposition, the assumed third pairing of Nik-Sch scares the shit out of me. (DAMN SPHINCTER FAILED TO PUCKER)

    At 5×5, last years Nik-Sch pairing was 42.7% CF with 59.1% OZS.

    Nik-Fay was 49.6% CF with 48.7% OZS. (Fay-Sch was 48.6% CF but in only 16 mins, so ignored)

    What that, and my eyes, tell me is that neither Nikita nor Schultz understand defensive positioning, but Fayne does. So the pairing works OK because Fayne can often cover up for his partners miscues. But put Nikitin and Schultz together and you pour gasoline on a tire fire.

    Cash is suggesting that Reinhart and Schultz would make a better pairing and I tend to agree. Given that Reinharts a rookie and would spend the first half season adapting to the game, it wouldn’t be a good pairing.

    But I’d expect it would be better.

  14. Woogie63 says:

    LT will Reinhart be part of the Penticton tournament?

  15. Factotum says:

    Natalie Wood. Long sigh.

    Maybe I’m the only one, but I have a thought that I haven’t been able to banish from my mind all summer: Hall-McDavid-Draisaitl

    Am I nuts?

  16. frjohnk says:

    Bohologo,

    That’s for that.

    He was one of the last cuts for the Russian World Championship team IIRC. Really good skater, great shot, decent size, plays with some bite. A right shot that plays left wing. I can see him hammering one timers from all of our left shot passers, McDavid, Hall, Nuge etc over the next few years.

    He could surprise. Maybe he just gets a cup of coffee in the AHL if he blows the doors off down there.

  17. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    G Money,

    Exactly. No one is winning the Norris on the Reinhart/Schultz pairing this year, and maybe by next year it’s actually good… but yeah.

    Heck, I’d take Davidson/Schultz over NN or Ference on that pair. Rookie mistakes be damned.

  18. kinger_OIL says:

    – Remember last year in training camp when Dallas was figuring out for that last 3 games it seemed on giving time to the guys he thought were going to be the 13th and 14th F and the bench warmer D, while not playing the players who were going to play as much?

    – It would be nice to let at least the top lines develop some chem, as well as the D pairs this time around

    – Of course there is a documented little predictive value in pre-season to actual games, but hopefully training camp is tight this year

    – That 2nd D with NN Jultz is stinky: even over the internet I can smell it

  19. admiralmark says:

    I suspect Draisaitl is gonna push his way in the top 9 and mess up your line predictions LT. Top 3 players most likely to be sent to Bakersfield despite showing they deserve NHL employment ARE………1) Nurse. 2) Reinhart 3) Draisaitl.

  20. Drew says:

    Woodguy:
    Klefbom—Gryba: Oilers badly need another pairing who can both take defensive zone starts and move the puck up. Gryba is a little inexperienced for the role but the best available option.

    I like the idea of this pairing.

    Gryba played toughish minutes with the worst zone starts on OTT last year, so it a row he knows how to hoe.

    Klef is becoming very good at moving the puck north either with his stick or feet and can play vs better players without drowning.

    That gives the Oilers 2 sets of Dmen where your sphincter isn’t on auto-pucker when the opposition gains the zone.

    That also treats Schultz more like Yandle in terms of assignments and that’s a good thing.

    I agree, to me this makes a lot of sense. creates a pair that can play a heavy game (grabber) and still skate really well (dreamy).

  21. Drew says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!:
    G Money,

    Exactly.No one is winning the Norris on the Reinhart/Schultz pairing this year, and maybe by next year it’s actually good…but yeah.

    Heck, I’d take Davidson/Schultz over NN or Ference on that pair.Rookie mistakes be damned.

    Again the board is on a roll, this feels like a third pairing with promise… i am hoping that Jultz actually works on things this summer besides his golf game and shows some real growth.

  22. jonrmcleod says:

    Best case scenario: Nikitin improves and the Oilers are able to trade him or Ference at the deadline. Meanwhile, Nurse and Reinhart have strong first halves and are inserted into the Oilers’ lineup at mid-season.

  23. Woodguy says:

    G Money,

    At 5×5, last years Nik-Sch pairing was 42.7% CF with 59.1% OZS.

    Yeah, that wasn’t good, but it was at the beginning of last year and they played 2nd toughs.

    I think in McLellen system playing 3rds might have different results.

    Also, Nikitin is just place holding for Nurse or Reinhart.

    I could see Reinhart-Schultz as a reasonable 3rd pairing that gets the cherry zone starts out of gate or Nurse-Schultz.

    I’d rather Nurse gets integrated with a vet though. Reinhart has a full year of pro and it wouldn’t be as tough for him.

  24. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    That 2nd D with NN Jultz is stinky: even over the internet I can smell it

    3rd, not 2nd. Big difference in terms of deployment.

  25. Drew says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    That 2nd D with NN Jultz is stinky: even over the internet I can smell it

    3rd, not 2nd.Big difference in terms of deployment.

    3rd pair heavily sheltered with time on the PP. NN does have decent point shot, may give Jultz an outlet when handling the puck during the PP?

    I still shudder in fear at the thought of the jailbreaks when Jultz cough’s up the puck on the PP with NN only guy back.

  26. godot10 says:

    Woodguy:
    Klefbom—Gryba: Oilers badly need another pairing who can both take defensive zone starts and move the puck up. Gryba is a little inexperienced for the role but the best available option.

    I like the idea of this pairing.

    Gryba played toughish minutes with the worst zone starts on OTT last year, so it a row he knows how to hoe.

    Klef is becoming very good at moving the puck north either with his stick or feet and can play vs better players without drowning.

    That gives the Oilers 2 sets of Dmen where your sphincter isn’t on auto-pucker when the opposition gains the zone.

    That also treats Schultz more like Yandle in terms of assignments and that’s a good thing.

    Except it will be Reinhart in the lineup, maybe with Schultz, maybe with Gryba, instead of Nikitin.

  27. rickithebear says:

    zatch: That D is still…ugh

    Explain Ugh!

    With you know theory and Facts!

    I have stated that you need HS and MS save% goalies.
    try and get the best at.
    though a defence can allow 5-8 HS/60.
    So you want the best HSCA/60 d on your team.

    That the good box protection d try to achieve sub 49.00 CA/60
    Whch should yield quality HSCA/60 rates.
    Top 10 12.10
    Top 20 12.65
    top 30 13.05
    ———————— #1 d rate to 13.05
    top 40 13.40
    top 50 13.70
    top 60 14.00
    ———————-#2 D rate 13.06 to 14.00
    top 70 14.40
    top 80 14.55
    top 90 14.85
    ——————– #3 D rate. 14.01 to 14.85

    I have stated in a properly coached Box d system.

    Our D performinhg in a strong coached box system.

    Fayne 1st 10.05 #1 d in game

    Sekera
    1st comp 13.95 top 60
    2nd comp 12.06 top 10
    the 3 top HSCA season for buf in 4 seasons.
    PC suggested a 2nd comp Anchor for EDMonton

    Nikitin
    2nd comp 12.46 top 20
    2nd and 3rd best HSCA seasons in CBJ

    then we look for young d that have shown signs of sub 47.00 CA/60
    Klefbom 2nd comp 14-15 43.04 CA/60

    Nurse 3rd comp 14-15 45.38
    he faced 1st for 9:28 w/ fayne 44.37
    Reinhart 3rd comp 14-15 w/ Dehann 44.03

  28. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Except it will be Reinhart in the lineup, maybe with Schultz, maybe with Gryba, instead of Nikitin.

    That’s very possible.

    I’d bet Chia will be shopping Nikitin with 50% salary retained to every team that gets a Dman injury in the pre-season.

    If Nikitin is healthy in camp I can’t see McLellen deciding that Reinhart is the better option simply due to experience.

  29. kinger_OIL says:

    – At least this year the stink of a Jultz NN Captain: you have guys behind them, so they can be benched

    – Last year was just awful, the minutes those guys got, no matter what.

    – Not sure how that translates into reality because you are replacing an old stink with potential rookie stink: but at least there are replacements not named Hunt Aulie Potter, but guys with uproven but real upside (Nurse Rein Davidson etc)

    – And Chia has made moves during the year, as LT documents

  30. Hammers says:

    LT as King . Great line up with what we have but switch Nuge and McD . You want Nuge to get tough sledding not McD .

  31. Woodguy says:

    Hammers:
    LT as King . Great line up with what we have but switch Nuge and McD . You want Nuge to get tough sledding not McD .

    LT’s contention is that today Hall and RNH are the two best Oilers.

    I agree with that.

    He wants the two best Oilers split up to maximize offence.

    I get that too.

    I really don’t want McDavid to get the best Dpairs right out of the gate like he will playing with Hall, but I understand why LT does it.

    It makes the Oilers a match up nightmare as Pouliot-RNH-Eberle outscored the toughest opp last year, so if they get the 2nd best C and D pair they’ll tear it up.

    I’ve come around to LT’s way of thinking on this.

    If it was anyone but McDavid I wouldn’t be for it (DrySaddle for example), but he’s McDavid and Pou-RNH-Ebs are going to give many coaches pause when figuring out the match ups.

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

    Dallas signs Eakin (Stars, not Eakins) to four year, $3.85M per season extension.

    I know Cody is a good player, but does that price not seem pretty dear?

    https://twitter.com/MikeHeika/status/637338662384963584

  33. rickithebear says:

    kinger_OIL: At least this year the stink of a Jultz NN Captain: you have guys behind them, so they can be benched

    An injured and hobbled nikitin faced a higher comp than he normally faces.
    Nikitin
    EDM 1st 14-15 15.80 HSCA/60
    CBJ 2nd 12.56

    Petry facing the comp nikitin faced in CBJ.
    Edm 2nd 14-15 15.27
    MTL 2nd 14-15 15.79
    Petry averaged .44 EVA/60 ranks 150/218

    PC refered to Sekera as a 2nd comp Anchor.

    HSCA/60 suggests the last 4 years suggests

    Fayne (10.05 #1 1st comp D) .40 EVA/60 ranks 160/218
    Sekera (12.06 #6 2nd comp D) .63 EVA/60 ranks 83/218
    Nikitin (12.56 #7 2nd comp D) .70 EVA/60 62/218
    If Healthy 3 of the top 4 covered.

    Klefbom 2nd comp averaged .74 EVA/60 ranks 51/218
    Gryba (13.99 2nd/3rd comp) averaged .68 EVA/60 ranks 68/218
    J. schultz 3rd comp averaged .54 EVA/60 ranks 108/218

  34. Ducey says:

    JD¡™ David O’Connor’s Reel:
    Dallas signs Eakin (Stars, not Eakins) to four year, $3.85M per season extension.

    I know Cody is a good player, but does that price not seem pretty dear?

    https://twitter.com/MikeHeika/status/637338662384963584

    It looks like a fair deal. It doesn’t kick in for a year. He wins more than 50% of his faceoffs and has steadily improved his boxcars. He was 4th in team scoring. He is only 24.

    The beloved Hemsky had 8 fewer points last year, and makes $4 million a year at less of a premium position.

    Eakins’s extension includes at least 2 UFA years (I think 3) so it seems on the mark.

    If anything, I think Eakins left money on the table. Maybe players are getting worried about the cap going down.

  35. kinger_OIL says:

    Good stuff Ricki – highlights the hope but maybe not as bad as our gut tells us? Hope for NN to recover and a magic other #1 competitor, or at least not murdered with the hodge-podge we have, right Ricki?

  36. rickithebear says:

    JD¡™ David O’Connor’s Reel: I know Cody is a good player, but does that price not seem pretty dear?

    His g and point totals the last 2 years are upper 2nd
    35 goals #108
    75 points #135

    B. Pouliot 34G 70 PT 4M
    Boyes 35G 74P
    Toffoli 35G 78P 3.25M
    Hagelin 34G 68P 4M
    Boedker 33G 79P 3.75M
    Galchenyuk 33G 78P 2.8M bridge
    B. Sutter 34G 59P 4.375M
    C. Wilson 31G 75P 3.938M

  37. G Money says:

    Man!

    There’s a really interesting article on Blue Shirt Banter on Cam “Goalbuster” Talbot.

    I tried to paste the link and the post disappeared.

    Last time I did that (post a link to an article on BSB), the system told me it was spam and also deleted it.

    I think WheatNOil tried to post the same link later and got the same result.

    LT: why do you hate Blue Shirt Banter?

    Anyway, I’m posting a shortened URL and hopefully that should work:
    http://goo.gl/kTIII1

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

    Ducey,

    rickithebear,

    Thanks guys. That does look like a good signing for the Stars spits after all.

    Not that long ago we were blue-skying about trading for Eakin to help the Oilers’ woeful center depth.

    WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  39. wheatnoil says:

    G Money,

    What an awesome article! Everyone should click that link because I kind of want to quote the whole thing.

    I will, however, quote this one paragraph for the non-stats folks (and I think AsiaOil might find it at least somewhat reassuring).

    I don’t think Talbot’s performance this season was smoke and mirrors. He is a refined goaltender, showing all the markings of Allaire’s instruction. Economy of movement, relying on line of sight, positioning, and freeing up his stance and arms to react, instead of tightly balling up his stance as he did a bit more when he was younger. He is a different goaltender than Lundqvist, who stays farther back in his net than anyone else can, and is a marvel in his reflexes and reaction. But Talbot plays a very clean, very repeatable style. He anticipates well, squares up to most shots he can track and see, and as a result controls his rebounds. He rarely beats himself. All reports of his temperament say that he is easy-going and unflappable. Those are all things that contribute to consistency of performance. Attributes of a solid starting goaltender.

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

    wheatnoil: What an awesome article!

    The money quote for me: With no pedigree to speak of other than the seal of approval from Benoit Allaire (which in itself might be the only pedigree that matters).

  41. Adam Wu says:

    Let’s not forget that Nikitin had what is arguably his worst ever year last season. Our perceptions are coloured greatly by confirmation bias.

    Regression to the mean works just as much for players whose acquisition one disapproved of as it does for the players one likes.

  42. Lowetide says:

    Regressing teams for 2015-16. I still have Calgary on the list but it isn’t as sure as it was before the summer imo

    http://bleacherreport.com/articles/2554403-nhl-teams-most-likely-to-regress-in-the-2015-16-season

  43. Lowetide says:

    Also, this from 2007 about Al Arbour the player

    http://lowetide.ca/2007/09/22/tracers-the-great-al-arbour-2/

  44. leadfarmer says:

    Adam Wu,

    Except for the year before that which he was equally as bad. Two bad years in a row. Hopefully he had a wake up call and worked his but off this offseason

  45. AsiaOil says:

    You are indeed correct – much more comfortable about a short track-record when verbals from a guy like Allaire match up with the stats. Good find…..

    wheatnoil:
    G Money,

    What an awesome article! Everyone should click that link because I kind of want to quote the whole thing.

    I will, however, quote this one paragraph for the non-stats folks (and I think AsiaOil might find it at least somewhat reassuring).

    I don’t think Talbot’s performance this season was smoke and mirrors. He is a refined goaltender, showing all the markings of Allaire’s instruction. Economy of movement, relying on line of sight, positioning, and freeing up his stance and arms to react, instead of tightly balling up his stance as he did a bit more when he was younger. He is a different goaltender than Lundqvist, who stays farther back in his net than anyone else can, and is a marvel in his reflexes and reaction. But Talbot plays a very clean, very repeatable style. He anticipates well, squares up to most shots he can track and see, and as a result controls his rebounds. He rarely beats himself. All reports of his temperament say that he is easy-going and unflappable. Those are all things that contribute to consistency of performance. Attributes of a solid starting goaltender.


  46. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide:
    Also, this from 2007 about Al Arbour the player

    http://lowetide.ca/2007/09/22/tracers-the-great-al-arbour-2/

    Wow, great post.

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