PACIFIC HEIGHTS 2015-16

The Edmonton Oilers are improved (I think we can agree on that) but how much? That my friends is the million dollar question. I’m coming in hot compared to most and there are several reasons:

  • The goaltending will be better.
  • Todd McLellan.
  • The Hall cluster is reaching the beginning of their prime.
  • Improvement at center.
  • Connor McDavid.
  • Peter Chiarelli is an aggressive in-season manager.
  • Young defensemen are going to get better as season wears on (hopefully).

No one has the answer, and Jordan Eberle’s injury is real and that hurts. I think this team begins the turn north and it should be a fun year. Last year’s predictions came far earlier in the year.

ARIZONA COYOTES

  • Pacific Division: No. 7
  • Western Conference: No. 14
  • Overall: No. 30

I think they may consider this the ‘Auston Matthews after Donner Party Winter’ season and there’s going to be some challenges. Max Domi and Anthony DuClair are the beginning of a rebuild that will eventually see Shane Doan ride off into the sunset but it won’t be this season. Doan scored 14 goals in 79 games last season and that total was No. 3 on the team. They’re bad.

VANCOUVER CANUCKS

  • Pacific Division: No. 6
  • Western Conference: No. 13
  • Overall: No. 26

They’re a flat out strange team now, with the Sedins and Ryan Miller on one end and Jared McCann and Jake Virtanen on the other. I thought they’d crater last season, they did not. Last year this team had the Sedin line and a bunch of forwards under 40 points and this season they are flat out younger and trying to rebuild on the fly. Maybe it works. I’m betting it does not.

EDMONTON OILERS

  • Pacific Division: No. 5
  • Western Conference: No. 11
  • Overall: No. 22

The turn north is not enough to get this team into the post season but I think they finish strong and give fans something to look forward to in the future. For me, the key players will be Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Cam Talbot and Andrej Sekera. The team badly needs quick development from Oscar Klefbom, Griffin Reinhart and Darnell Nurse. McDavid wins the Calder.

CALGARY FLAMES

  • Pacific Division: No. 4
  • Western Conference: No. 8
  • Overall: No. 17

It’s a tough team to slot but in my opinion the combination of growth by the youth on this team and astute moves by management gets them into the playoffs. What an enormous influx of talent we’ve seen over the last two seasons, absolutely incredible. Credit where due.

SAN JOSE SHARKS

  • Pacific Division: No. 3
  • Western Conference: No. 7
  • Overall: No. 14

The Sharks did some really good things over the summer, shoring up their defense (added Paul Martin). The real key is that sublime group of veterans that includes Jumbo and Marleau, Vlasic and Burns, Pavelski and Couture. They replaced a good coach with another good coach and should make the second season with a week to spare.

LOS ANGELES KINGS

  • Pacific Division: No. 2
  • Western Conference: No. 3
  • Overall: No. 5

I think they probably win the Stanley but lose a close race for the division title. There’s just too much here, from Kopitar and Doughty to Gaborik, Muzzin and the arrivals of Lucic and Ehrhoff. I am absolutely a fan of Dean Lombardi and I think he feels like this team lost a great opportunity a year ago. He’ll be very aggressive.

ANAHEIM DUCKS

  • Pacific Division: No. 1
  • Western Conference: No. 2
  • Overall: No. 4

The club added some help in goal, defense and up front and they’ll need it as Perry and Getzlaf turn 30. It’s an older, veteran roster but the defense can skate miles and they have solid to excellent goaltending. I expect they’ll be very active at the deadline adding veteran defensemen.

The Oilers added a prospect from training camp but it wasn’t Loik Leveille nor Tyler Soy nor Jordan Papirny. The man who won the prize? Braden Christoffer. He’s a progression of his impact:

  • May 2015: Bakersfield signs L Braden Christoffer. Guy Flaming tells me he’s a hard worker and a blue collar type. 5.10, 185 and 147 pims, he also scored 26 goals so has some skill. Most of the videos available involve fighting, although he’s not a heavyweight. Source
  • July 2015: L Braden Christoffer. Had the puck on his stick a lot and did good things with it. Source
  • Sept 12, 2015: Braden Christoffer—Marco Roy—Rihards Bukarts—I like the looks of this line a lot, hope we see plenty of them out there. Christoffer was a revelation last night and Bukarts is a handful. Roy has a foot in the door and needs to show well every shift. Source

CURRENT 50-MAN (48)

  1. G Cam Talbot
  2. G Anders Nilsson
  3. G Ben Scrivens
  4. G Laurent Brossoit
  5. G Eetu Laurikainen
  6. D Andrej Sekera
  7. D Mark Fayne
  8. D Oscar Klefbom
  9. D Justin Schultz
  10. D Griffin Reinhart
  11. D Eric Gryba
  12. D Brandon Davidson
  13. D Andrew Ference
  14. D Darnell Nurse
  15. D Joey Laleggia
  16. D Nikita Nikitin
  17. D Brad Hunt
  18. D David Musil
  19. D Jordan Oesterle
  20. D Dillon Simpson
  21. D Martin Gernat
  22. D Ben Betker
  23. C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
  24. C Connor McDavid
  25. C Anton Lander
  26. C Mark Letestu
  27. C Leon Draisaitl
  28. C Bogdan Yakimov
  29. C Jujhar Khaira
  30. C Kyle Platzer
  31. L Taylor Hall
  32. L Benoit Pouliot
  33. L Lauri Korpikoski
  34. L Matt Hendricks
  35. L Luke Gazdic
  36. L Ryan Hamilton
  37. L Braden Christoffer
  38. L Mitch Moroz
  39. L Kale Kessy
  40. R Jordan Eberle (IR)
  41. R Teddy Purcell
  42. R Anton Slepyshev
  43. R Nail Yakupov
  44. R Rob Klinkhammer
  45. R Tyler Pitlick
  46. R Iiro Pakarinen
  47. R Andrew Miller
  48. R Greg Chase

That seems about right. Does the cap hit stay? Nikitin remain on the 50-man? NHL rules are a moving target, plus there’s the rules and the LOU rules. We wait.

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131 Responses to "PACIFIC HEIGHTS 2015-16"

  1. vinotintazo says:

    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways, so forget about a trade.

  2. RexLibris says:

    OT, but in case this comes up during discussion:

    Woodguy Retweeted
    Darren Haynes ‏@DarrenWHaynes 45m45 minutes ago

    Heaviest NHL Teams:
    LA – 209.1
    Wpg – 208.2
    Ari – 208.0
    Col – 207.1

    Lightest NHL Teams:
    Van – 194.7
    Cgy – 195.5
    Car – 197.2
    Chi – 197.6

    Given LT’s predictions here, which I have to agree with save for San Jose, I think we can probably put the “heavy teams win the West” thing to bed for a little while.

  3. Lowetide says:

    vinotintazo:
    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways, so forget about a trade.

    Le sigh.

  4. marty62 says:

    I think we give the other teams in this division too much credit. I think alot of things bounced the right way for the Flames last year. High shooting percentages,, winning alot of close games, overtime games etc. I think they will have to be much, much better than they were last year just not to go backwards. Last year our Oilers lost all 5 games to the Flames, Wild and Arizona. I dont think that happens this year. In some cases the table may be turned around all the way. I think the Ducks are the only team in this group other than the Oilers that doesnt take another step backwards….

  5. Drew says:

    vinotintazo:
    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways, so forget about a trade.

    Thoughts on Nikitan, unless he comes off the books (terminates his contract) he should get his butt to Bakersfield and be available to the Oil if there is an injury situation.

    He is also available for a trade at deadline.

    I know it is crowded but ECHL can be the starting off point for more of the youngsters.

  6. marty62 says:

    vinotintazo:
    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways, so forget about a trade.

    If he does go back to Russia that would pretty much guarantee he wont be back with the Oilers! sign me up! its only Katz’s money…….

  7. kinger_OIL says:

    – LT – great write-up.

    – Could have a fun time coming up with the LT caracters who were the cast of Barney Miller from your last post!:

    – NYCOIL – Yemana
    – WG – Fish (becasue he’s crotchety!)
    – A bunch of Arthurs on the site for sure
    – Ron Harris: Hunter?

    – was a great show, if anyone can catch it on reruns, well worth the investment in a great cast of caracters. Kind of like an early Seinfeld, except cops in NYC, where they didn’t really do anything but be funny!

    – You mentioned Fish from Barney Miller, he was a beaut, I recall one episode watching with my Dad as a kid, and Fish came in and stapled his socks so they would stay up. Not sure why it was funny but my Dad laughed hard, so I did!

  8. Ducey says:

    Drew: Thoughts on Nikitan, unless he comes off the books (terminates his contract) he should get his butt to Bakersfield and be available to the Oil if there is an injury situation.

    He is also available for a trade at deadline.

    I know it is crowded but ECHL can be the starting off point for more of the youngsters.

    I agree.

  9. Магия 10 says:

    vinotintazo:
    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways, so forget about a trade.

    Trade the cap hit to team trying to reach the cap floor.

  10. Woodguy says:

    vinotintazo:
    Hearing Nikitin is Negotiating going back to russia… that just means we still take the 3.55M Cap hit anyways
    , so forget about a trade.

    If I’m Chia I give Nikitin’s agent a big FUCK YOU if he doesn’t want to terminate the contract.

    “I’m sorry, if Nik doesn’t report to Bakersfield we’ll suspend him without pay (allowed in the CBA if a player doesn’t report)

    “But Pete you can get a couple million from Omsk”

    “Fuck you, report or terminate”

    *click*

    If he reports he skates with the injured players and never dresses.

    Fuck that guy.

  11. marty62 says:

    Woodguy: If I’m Chia I give Nikitin’s agent a big FUCK YOU if he doesn’t want to terminate the contract.

    “I’m sorry, if Nik doesn’t report to Bakersfield we’ll suspend him without pay (allowed in the CBA if a player doesn’t report)

    “But Pete you can get a couple million from Omsk”

    “Fuck you, report or terminate”

    *click*

    If he reports he skates with the injured players and never dresses.

    Fuck that guy.

    Where ever Nikitin ends up going someone swing by Kingsway and grab Howson and make sure he gets on the plane with him…..

  12. Aron_S says:

    Woodguy,

    So this is my question for those with more knowledge than me:

    Is it possible for the Oilers to work outside of the NHL/CBA and basically have Nikitin agree to terminate the contract, he plays for Omsk and the Oilers pay Omsk a few million as a severance payment/thanks for taking care of our problem?

    Is this a circumvention of the CBA and something only Lou could get away with and other managers have a pipe dream of? Or can/does this actually happen?

  13. JDï™ says:

    Woodguy: “Fuck you, report or terminate”

    That’s the ticket – Chiarelli doesn’t owe this guy any favors.

  14. JDï™ says:

    Магия 10: Trade the cap hit to team trying to reach the cap floor.

    Arizona is the lowest team, and they’re already at $59M or so, thanks in part to CFPs contract, which I believe is above the floor. http://stats.nhlnumbers.com/teams

    So no needy cap floor teams out there, meaning Chiarelli would have to add a sweetener to any deal to rid the team of NN’s hit.

  15. vinotintazo says:

    Woodguy: If I’m Chia I give Nikitin’s agent a big FUCK YOU if he doesn’t want to terminate the contract.

    “I’m sorry, if Nik doesn’t report to Bakersfield we’ll suspend him without pay (allowed in the CBA if a player doesn’t report)

    “But Pete you can get a couple million from Omsk”

    “Fuck you, report or terminate”

    *click*

    If he reports he skates with the injured players and never dresses.

    Fuck that guy.

    Well, that’s one way to look at it… but if your gonna burry 4.5 M, I think the GM would rather save some money by sending him to europe. I think if he goes to europe, the team that he’s loaned to will pay some of his salary.

    then he can tell Katz… hey thats the best I could do.. lol.

    if Nikitin is not in our top 8 Dman, he never will make this line up again.

  16. Магия 10 says:

    JDï™: Arizona is the lowest team, and they’re already at $59M or so, thanks in part to CFPs contract, which I believe is above the floor. http://stats.nhlnumbers.com/teams

    So no needy cap floor teams out there, meaning Chiarelli would have to add a sweetener to any deal to rid the team of NN’s hit.

    Thanks. Yeah. Cap isn’t rising anymore.

  17. böök¡je says:

    Aron_S,

    That’s the type of thing that would cost you draft picks if you are caught.

  18. Woodguy says:

    Just listened to the Chia Sportsnet interview linked to in the previous thread.

    Re: McDavid

    McLean mentions that he skates like a 20 year old Federov, who was the best skater in the game for years.

    Someone mentions Gilbert Perrault. Chia mentions he saw Perrault as a kid, but thinks McDavid is a better skater.

    Then Chia says:

    “…and the thing with Conner is that his edges are so good….its almost like when he turns he accelerates without crossing over,,,,and I’ve really never seen that anywhere….so……hehe…..I see the same strength in his stride as some of the players, but he gets to full speed in such a hurry. and, and..you know guys have to stop their feet to make plays? He’s always moving his feet and making plays so….he’s a really effortless and fast skater but the thing that stands out for me is he’s able to maintain or even increase his speed on turning without crossing over so its pretty cool to see.”

    Oh.

    Woot.

    WOOOT.

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    MMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMMM

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    DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

    AAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAA

    VVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVVV

    IIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIIII

    DDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDDD

    !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  19. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy,

    You’re angry at the wrong guy. If Mact offered me $4.5 million to be an Oiler I would have accepted.

    THAT guy is MacT

  20. Woodguy says:

    Aron_S:
    Woodguy,

    So this is my question for those with more knowledge than me:

    Is it possible for the Oilers to work outside of the NHL/CBA and basically have Nikitin agree to terminate the contract, he plays for Omsk and the Oilers pay Omsk a few million as a severance payment/thanks for taking care of our problem?

    Is this a circumvention of the CBA and something only Lou could get away with and other managers have a pipe dream of? Or can/does this actually happen?

    That is circumventing the CBA and I’m sure those discussions happen.

  21. Woodguy says:

    vinotintazo: Well, that’s one way to look at it… but if your gonna burry 4.5 M, I think the GM would rather save some money by sending him to europe. I think if he goes to europe, the team that he’s loaned to will pay some of his salary.

    then he can tell Katz… hey thats the best I could do.. lol.

    if Nikitin is not in our top 8 Dman, he never will make this line up again.

    That all depends on what Katz thinks of the $4.5MM.

    He may think a lot of it.

    He may think little of it.

    I do not know.

  22. Woodguy says:

    böök¡je:
    Woodguy,

    You’re angry at the wrong guy.If Mact offered me $4.5 million to be an Oiler I would have accepted.

    THAT guy is MacT

    MacT offered him $4.5MM for a NHL/AHL contract, not a KHL contract.

    Wanna go home?

    Fine.

    Terminate.

  23. JDï™ says:

    Магия 10: Thanks.

    I was thinking the same thing as you – maybe somebody needs a cap hit without salary, but that kind of thing happens less frequently than 3 for 1 trades, it would seem.

  24. rickithebear says:

    nikitin gave us the best 1st comp box protection numbers of any D since Souray.

    Thank you macT/Tambo for getting rid of that over hyped 1st comp piece of Defensive Shite.
    Petry
    Smid
    Gilbert

    Damn straight we do not have a good enough D.

    Fayne 10.05 1st
    Sekera 13.45 1st – 12.05 2nd
    Gryba 13.99 2nd/3rd

    next!

  25. GCW_69 says:

    Woodguy: That is circumventing the CBA and I’m sure those discussions happen.

    Craig Button once said if a GM isn’t trying to figure out ways to get around the CBA he isn’t doing his job.

  26. HeatTreaterJoe says:

    Maybe we can send MacT to Omsk too??

    *STILL angry about Petry

  27. hunter1909 says:

    For a farewell to Northlands, as a between period show I’d like to see Lowe, MacT and Howson get chased around the ice by Polar Bears.

  28. G Money says:

    Aron_S,

    The CBA has some fairly rigid clauses around cap circumvention.

    Any payments you make to a player *must* be within the terms of the contract and must be accounted for within the cap.

    If a contract is terminated, the CBA has provisions about what can be done after the fact. For example, if the player then works for the team or any related entity, he cannot be paid more than reasonable market for that position.

    This is why asking Ference to retire and then have Katz’s personal company pay him the same to be a community ambassador won’t work (unless you can establish that market value for a community ambassador is $3.5 to $4.5M a year – which under the terms of the CBA, presumably only Lou is allowed do).

  29. jake70 says:

    What ever happened to Voynov and Richards hits (cap hits that is) in LA?

  30. Drew says:

    hunter1909:
    For a farewell to Northlands, as a between period show I’d like to see Lowe, MacT and Howson get chased around the ice by Polar Bears.

    well the bears in the arctic are starving and very grumpy these days. would be interesting to see.

  31. G Money says:

    Woodguy,

    I don’t think thats the either or. Nikitin’s BATNA is he can always report to B’field, put his feet up, and take $4.5M more of Katz’s money for doing nothing.

    He’s the one in the drivers seat telling Chia/Katz “you sent me down – now negotiate or fuck you pay me”.

    The negotiation would be “or you can have me out of your hair AND as an added bonus, Omsk will pay some of my salary for the year.”

    Either way, Nikitin gets his money and the Oilers get nothing. Its a matter of how much cash out of pocket Katz is paying for getting nothing.

  32. Centre of attention says:

    HeatTreaterJoe:
    Maybe we can send MacT to Omsk too??

    *STILL angry about Petry

    With Petry we could actually talk about Playoffs. Maybe. Depends on Goalie but yeah, this looks much more respectable on paper:

    Klefbom-Petry
    Sekera-Schultz
    Rienhart-Gryba/Ference
    Davidson
    Nurse

    Looks like an NHL defense core to me, not the best but far from the worst.

    *shakes fist at MacT*

  33. Woodguy says:

    HeatTreaterJoe:
    Maybe we can send MacT to Omsk too??

    *STILL angry about Petry

    I heard that MacT approached Petry in the summer about an extension but he wouldn’t consider it while Eakins was coach.

    By the time Eakins was fired the gong show around the Oilers was in full swing and the horse was out of the barn.

    Strudwick also mentioned that he’d never seen a player treated as poorly as EDM treated Petry.

    Amazing how much damage bad managers can do.

    I was excited when MacT was hired.

    Man.

  34. G Money says:

    vinotintazo,

    I agree with this, as per my previous comment.

    If I were in Nikitin’s shoes – with a $4.5M in guaranteed money – I can guarantee that I’m in the driver’s seat in any negotiations with Katz. I’m getting that money no matter what.

    So there’s the deal Daryl – pay me $4.5M to fuck the dog in Bfield and we both lose (you more than me).

    Or Omsk will pay you $2M (or whatever) of that $4.5M – you’re only out $2.5M, I’m in Omsk, and we both win.

    The only way Katz shouldn’t do that deal is out of spite – but the only one deserving of spite in this scenario is MacT (or Howson), who agreed to pay that money in the first place.

  35. stush18 says:

    Hey LT, what do you think happens to winquist? I kinda though t they had one contract to give out to the ahl tryouts, and I kinda thought he had a leg up. Christoffer played well, no doubt, but I thought winquist played even better.

    Think he is let go at the end of the year? Personally I hope not, I still think there is an NHL player there.

  36. Drew says:

    Woodguy: I heard that MacT approached Petry in the summer about an extension but he wouldn’t consider it while Eakins was coach.

    By the time Eakins was fired the gong show around the Oilers was in full swing and the horse was out of the barn.

    Strudwick also mentioned that he’d never seen a player treated as poorly as EDM treated Petry.

    Amazing how much damage bad managers can do.

    I was excited when MacT was hired.

    Man.

    I was a big MacT fan as well. It seems that they (he and DE) had this plan of breaking the young core and remaking them in their image (making sow’s ears out of purses).
    Horrible decision after horrible decision makes my head hurt thinking about it again.

  37. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy: I heard that MacT approached Petry in the summer about an extension but he wouldn’t consider it while Eakins was coach.

    By the time Eakins was fired the gong show around the Oilers was in full swing and the horse was out of the barn.

    Strudwick also mentioned that he’d never seen a player treated as poorly as EDM treated Petry.

    Amazing how much damage bad managers can do.

    I was excited when MacT was hired.

    Man.

    MacT looked pretty good at the time through Tambellini coloured glasses!

  38. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy: MacT offered him $4.5MM for a NHL/AHL contract, not a KHL contract.

    Wanna go home?

    Fine.

    Terminate.

    I agree fully IF Nikitin would actually take the deal. I don’t think he would and having an unhappy player in the AHL may not be with it – unless it’s in Hershey.

  39. G Money says:

    It’s a tough team to slot but in my opinion the combination of growth by the youth on this team and astute moves by management gets them into the playoffs.

    Given
    – how terrible the Flames have been for five straight years shots-wise
    – how last years playoffs were a gift of non-repeats (two standard deviations of sv% handing off to two standard deviations of sh% in sequence, something I’ve never before seen happen)
    – the generous gift of 10 out of 10 points from a hapless Oiler performance, heavily driven by two standard deviations (on the downside) of sv%
    – the idea of ‘development of young forwards’ is somewhat moot considering that they had off-the-charts unusual performances from a whole host of players, but almost entirely in non-repeating areas, especially sh% … even with development, their young players next year should be expected to underperform, in some cases by a wide margin, what happened last season

    So even with the adds of Hamilton and Frolik, that should kick them up three or four spots possession wise at most, and they should still be a bottom 10 team.

    If they make the playoffs next year, it will happen so far against the percentages and so far against the reversions we should expect to see, I may have to hang up my calculator.

  40. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: If I’m Chia I give Nikitin’s agent a big FUCK YOU if he doesn’t want to terminate the contract.

    “I’m sorry, if Nik doesn’t report to Bakersfield we’ll suspend him without pay (allowed in the CBA if a player doesn’t report)

    “But Pete you can get a couple million from Omsk”

    “Fuck you, report or terminate”

    *click*

    If he reports he skates with the injured players and never dresses.

    Fuck that guy.

    Heard about Nikitin just before I had to log off and head out.

    The first thought that went through my head was Nikitin walking out the door and flipping the bird on the way.

    Maybe i’m wrong, maybe he has other options or he doesn’t.

    I go back to Feaster trying to dump Kotalik.

    He wrapped a 2nd rounder into the deal to move him to Buffalo at the draft.

    Before he’d even skated with the team, Kotalik said “screw this, I’m going overseas” and the contract was terminated, Regier gets a 2nd, no cap hit, no contract, no buyout. Done.

    Flames fans were (rightfully) kind of pissed.

    If Nikitin’s options are as you describe, I’d certainly share some of your sentiment.

    Now that I think of it, maybe they should’ve sent Nikitin to Hershey.

  41. Drew says:

    böök¡je: MacT looked pretty good at the time through Tambellini coloured glasses!

    I spoke to a media guy early in Tambellini’s tenure, talked about his speaking ability (or lack thereof). I suggested that organizations usually don’t hire people with impairments to be in charge. He thought I was being overly judgmental and that it wouldn’t be that bad.

  42. Woodguy says:

    G Money:
    vinotintazo,

    I agree with this, as per my previous comment.

    If I were in Nikitin’s shoes – with a $4.5M in guaranteed money – I can guarantee that I’m in the driver’s seat in any negotiations with Katz.I’m getting that money no matter what.

    So there’s the deal Daryl – pay me $4.5M to fuck the dog in Bfield and we both lose (you more than me).

    Or Omsk will pay you $2M (or whatever) of that $4.5M – you’re only out $2.5M, I’m in Omsk, and we both win.

    The only way Katz shouldn’t do that deal is out of spite – but the only one deserving of spite in this scenario is MacT (or Howson), who agreed to pay that money in the first place.

    You’re missing the power that Katz has.

    Nikitin doesn’t want to be in NA now.

    That’s worth a lot.

  43. Unwashed Oilfan says:

    FUCKING ‘EH RASMUS!!!!

  44. Lowetide says:

    stush18:
    Hey LT, what do you think happens to winquist? I kinda though t they had one contract to give out to the ahl tryouts, and I kinda thought he had a leg up. Christoffer played well, no doubt, but I thought winquist played even better.

    Think he is let go at the end of the year? Personally I hope not, I still think there is an NHL player there.

    Winquist MAY be in a little trouble based on the wingers who are in Bakersfield. I don’t see many fast trains and that’s Winquist’s weakness. So, if it’s a matter of skill, I think he can win that race.

  45. Woodguy says:

    G Money:
    vinotintazo,

    I agree with this, as per my previous comment.

    If I were in Nikitin’s shoes – with a $4.5M in guaranteed money – I can guarantee that I’m in the driver’s seat in any negotiations with Katz.I’m getting that money no matter what.

    So there’s the deal Daryl – pay me $4.5M to fuck the dog in Bfield and we both lose (you more than me).

    Or Omsk will pay you $2M (or whatever) of that $4.5M – you’re only out $2.5M, I’m in Omsk, and we both win.

    The only way Katz shouldn’t do that deal is out of spite – but the only one deserving of spite in this scenario is MacT (or Howson), who agreed to pay that money in the first place.

    The other part of Katz’ power that you don’t mention.

    $4.5MM means a lot more to Nikitin than to Katz.

    Katz should be willing to set it on fire as a precedent.

    Nikitin should be able to be bullied into accept a ~$2.5MM Omsk deal in exchange for terminating his contract.

    Katz has a lot of power here.

  46. Drew says:

    Woodguy: You’re missing the power that Katz has.

    Nikitin doesn’t want to be in NA now.

    That’s worth a lot.

    seems like he does not want to try and get back in the NHL, if he did i would send him to AHL. if not i would send him to Alaska (do they still have an ECHL team?)

  47. RexLibris says:

    böök¡je: MacT looked pretty good at the time through Tambellini coloured glasses!

    That’s the problem.

    MacTavish was a step up.

    Heavens above, how in the heck did we get here?

    I said it in the Oilers RE and I’ll repeat it here.

    This organization has done damned little to deserve Connor McDavid, but the fans….the fans have earned him twice over for their patience and devotion to this rag-tag group of miscreants.

  48. Lowetide says:

    Drew: seems like he does not want to try and get back in the NHL, if he did i would send him to AHL. if not i would send him to Alaska (do they still have an ECHL team?)

    There are things in place to protect players from this kind of activity.

  49. Lowetide says:

    G Money:
    It’s a tough team to slot but in my opinion the combination of growth by the youth on this team and astute moves by management gets them into the playoffs.

    Given
    – how terrible the Flames have been for five straight years shots-wise
    – how last years playoffs were a gift of non-repeats (two standard deviations of sv% handing off to two standard deviations of sh% in sequence, something I’ve never before seen happen)
    – the generous gift of 10 out of 10 points from a hapless Oiler performance, heavily driven by two standard deviations (on the downside) of sv%
    – the idea of ‘development of young forwards’ is somewhat moot considering that they had off-the-charts unusual performances from a whole host of players, but almost entirely in non-repeating areas, especially sh% … even with development, their young players next year should be expected to underperform, in some cases by a wide margin, what happened last season

    So even with the adds of Hamilton and Frolik, that should kick them up three or four spots possession wise at most, and they should still be a bottom 10 team.

    If they make the playoffs next year, it will happen so far against the percentages and so far against the reversions we should expect to see, I may have to hang up my calculator.

    The Flames have some legit improvement going for them, including Frolik and Hamilton—plus the goaling should be better if they’re not crazy. Calgary is improved, the question is can they outrun the correction?

  50. JDï™ says:

    RexLibris: Now that I think of it, maybe they should’ve sent Nikitin to Hershey.

    Or at least point him to the highway to Hershey.

  51. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: There are things in place to protect players from this kind of activity.

    Back in Conn Smythe’s day…

  52. Ryan says:

    Woodguy: The other part of Katz’ power that you don’t mention.

    $4.5MM means a lot more to Nikitin than to Katz.

    Katz should be willing to set it on fire as a precedent.

    Nikitin should be able to be bullied into accept a ~$2.5MM Omsk deal in exchange for terminating his contract.

    Katz has a lot of power here.

    Absolutely.

    Hey NIki, how do you feel about soggy subs and diesel fumes?

  53. Caramel Obvious says:

    Centre of attention: With Petry we could actually talk about Playoffs. Maybe. Depends on Goalie but yeah, this looks much more respectable on paper:

    Klefbom-Petry
    Sekera-Schultz
    Rienhart-Gryba/Ference
    Davidson
    Nurse

    Looks like an NHL defense core to me, not the best but far from the worst.

    *shakes fist at MacT*

    If MacT signs Petry there isn’t enough money around to sign Sekera. Your roster doesn’t fit under the cap and to use it to hammer MacT is speaking out of both sides of your mouth. Which, I suppose, is typical.

    I have come to the conclusion that the irrational hatred Edmontonians have for MacT and Lowe is something that someone who isn’t from Edmonton can never understand.

    Tambellini was the GM when I became a fan. That’s year zero for me. This makes MacT the greatest GM in history.

  54. blainer says:

    Will we make the playoffs?

    Not with this D.. Not even close.

    Goaltending?

    What makes people think that Talbot is the starter? Maybe on opening night… Yes we paid a high price so he gets first crack but in no way is he the guaranteed starter…

    I actually think Nilsson can beat him out for the starter position based on what I’ve seen and Chia’s remarks on his practice habits….

    So IMO here is what it will take for us to make it to the promised land.. That would be the playoffs in case you don’t know what I mean.. lol..

    1. Goaltending with a 920% save percentage or better.. I’m predicting it’s Nillson but will be happy if it’s Talbot or both..

    2. Special teams.. we need to be top ten in both PP and PK..

    3. Defense… We need at least one of Klefbom Sekera Shultz or Reinhart to have a breakout year and turn into a true number one D playing 25 mins a night plus and be a go to player in all situations.

    4. The forwards need to commit to playing a 200 foot game… and that includes Yak especially.

    5. We have to be able to actually start scoring.

    6. Last and most important.. We NEED to stay healthy.

    Now I don’t think I’m asking Too much am I ?

  55. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: The Flames have some legit improvement going for them, including Frolik and Hamilton—plus the goaling should be better if they’re not crazy. Calgary is improved, the question is can they outrun the correction?

    Hiller Ramo was a good combo last year. But they never posted phenomenal numbers over an entire season.

    They stole games the Flames had no right winning (one night Chicago out-corsi’d them 70/30 or some crazy number, but Hiller won it for them).

    Then when that ship hit Charybdis the shooting %’s soared.

    The really wacky thing is the signal from mgmt this year so far is they aren’t really interested in keeping Hiller around, to the extent that Ramo is starting the season.

    Hiller is a better goalie than Ramo, and the Flames are saying they aren’t going to do anything “experimental” to screw with their plans to improve on last year, yet they are more or less pulling the rug out from under the guy who helped get them there last season.

  56. dangilitis says:

    If lak can argue that Mike Richards didn’t meet the terms if his contract for illegal drugs and not working hard enough, then the oilers definitely have a case if nikitin doesn’t report to Bakersfield. That’s all there is to it. Even souray got his ass down to ahl when he had every reason to reject exile. Don’t show and the oilers free 3.5 mil more cap space. If g money’s theory is correct I would still play chicken with them – “if you don’t think were serious, NN, then I hope your family enjoy Bakersfield for the year.”

  57. Woodguy says:

    Drew: seems like he does not want to try and get back in the NHL, if he did i would send him to AHL. if not i would send him to Alaska (do they still have an ECHL team?)

    You cannot assign a player who has signed a SPC (Standard Players Contract) to the ECHL.

    AHL only.

  58. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris: Hiller Ramo was a good combo last year. But they never posted phenomenal numbers over an entire season.

    They stole games the Flames had no right winning (one night Chicago out-corsi’d them 70/30 or some crazy number, but Hiller won it for them).

    Then when that ship hit Charybdis the shooting %’s soared.

    The really wacky thing is the signal from mgmt this year so far is they aren’t really interested in keeping Hiller around, to the extent that Ramo is starting the season.

    Hiller is a better goalie than Ramo, and the Flames are saying they aren’t going to do anything “experimental” to screw with their plans to improve on last year, yet they are more or less pulling the rug out from under the guy who helped get them there last season.

    I would have thought Hiller-Ortio would be a decent tandem.

  59. böök¡je says:

    Drew: seems like he does not want to try and get back in the NHL, if he did i would send him to AHL. if not i would send him to Alaska (do they still have an ECHL team?)

    You can’t loan him to an ECHL team without his permission unless he has a two way contract or an AHL contract.

  60. Klima's_Bucket says:

    hunter1909,

    I would like to enter your sweepstakes.
    I have taken into account zone starts, Corsi, Fenwick, VUKOTA and adjusted save percentage as well as a regression to the meat.
    After all that ciphering I couldn’t help but choose the number that best represents my findings.

    85 points.

    For obvious reasons.
    This way I can’t loose.
    Long live the Bucket!!

  61. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy: The other part of Katz’ power that you don’t mention.

    $4.5MM means a lot more to Nikitin than to Katz.

    Katz should be willing to set it on fire as a precedent.

    Nikitin should be able to be bullied into accept a ~$2.5MM Omsk deal in exchange for terminating his contract.

    Katz has a lot of power here.

    Other than Nikitin can just report to sunny California. Should have put the AHLteam in Fort McMurray.

  62. Kitchener says:

    Woodguy: That all depends on what Katz thinks of the $4.5MM.

    He may think a lot of it.

    He may think little of it.

    I do not know.

    If he thinks little of it, how do I get him my phone number?

  63. steveb12344 says:

    böök¡je: Other than Nikitin can just report to sunny California. Should have put the AHLteam in Fort McMurray.

    We could threaten to trade him to The San Diego Gulls. Thet would get his attention.

  64. Woodguy says:

    böök¡je: You can’t loan him to an ECHL team without his permission unless he has a two way contract or an AHL contract.

    The wording in the CBA stipulates that only ELC’s can be assigned to the ECHL, not 2-way.

    Given that ELC’s are all two way it’s easy to assume that.

  65. Магия 10 says:

    steveb12344: We could threaten to trade him to The San Diego Gulls. Thet would get his attention.

    Thread winner.

    Conversely we could see if Ference wants to join exercise partner.

  66. speeds says:

    blainer:
    Will we make the playoffs?

    Not with this D.. Not even close.

    Goaltending?

    What makes people think the Talbot is the starter? Maybe on opening night… Yes we paid a high price so he gets first crack but in no way is he the guaranteed starter…

    I actually think Nilsson can beat him out for the starter position based on what I’ve seen and Chia’s remarks on his practice habits….

    So IMO here is what it will take for us to make it to the promised land.. That would be the playoffs in case you don’t know what I mean.. lol..

    1.Goaltending with a920% save percentage or better.. I’m predicting it’s Nillson but will be happy if it’s Talbot or both..

    2. Special teams.. we need to be top ten in both PP and PK..

    3. Defense…We need at least one of KlefbomSekeraShultz or Reinhartto have a breakout year and turn into a true number one D playing 25 mins a night plus and be a go to player in all situations.

    4. The forwards need to commit to playing a 200 foot game… and that includes Yak especially.

    5. We have to be able to actually start scoring.

    6. Last and most important.. We NEED to stay healthy.

    Now I don’t think I’m asking Too much am I ?

    I think they could make the playoffs with this D, but it would require a large improvement in the goaltending, and the forwards both producing more and helping the D out a bit more.

  67. HeatTreaterJoe says:

    Caramel Obvious,

    If MacT gave Petry NN’s money, no cap issue. That’s the problem. MacT hitched his wagon to all of the wrong defensemen.

  68. fifthcartel says:

    I can’t believe they’re starting Ramo over Hiller.

  69. Lowetide says:

    HeatTreaterJoe:
    Caramel Obvious,

    If MacT gave Petry NN’s money, no cap issue.That’s the problem.MacT hitched his wagon to all of the wrong defensemen.

    One of my angriest moments of the last decade was listening to MacT on the radio talking about how much Petry was going to help a team after the deadline. Seemed delighted. Fuck me.

  70. HeatTreaterJoe says:

    Hunter, all of my fuming over MacT (and his continued presence) has me convinced this year is going to be really tough again for the wins / losses.

    Can you please put me down for 71 points?

    I’m concerned that the D just won’t be good enough to get the talented forwards the pucks, and that both goalies are not going to adjust well to nighty shellackings.

  71. TeeVee says:

    hunter1909:
    For a farewell to Northlands, as a between period show I’d like to see Lowe, MacT and Howson get chased around the ice by Polar Bears.

    Winner.

  72. wheatnoil says:

    Gregor tweets that a source tells him the Oilers have no plans to send Nikitin to the KHL right now. Want him in the AHL.

    https://twitter.com/jasongregor/status/651545222078402560

  73. Lowetide says:

    wheatnoil:
    Gregor tweets that a source tells him the Oilers have no plans to send Nikitin to the KHL right now. Want him in the AHL.

    https://twitter.com/jasongregor/status/651545222078402560

    And that’s the correct call. If the KHL/Omsk/Nikitin want to break the contract, I imagine there is a process that does NOT involve Edmonton until it’s time to do it.

  74. Frank the dog says:

    Hunter,
    I’m good with my 74. 12 oints better than the last year of the dementor, but still with a weak/young D, lots of injuries as always, but still better than dementor plus Todd Nelson, the short term redeemer and the start of the turn just through common sense coaching.

  75. G Money says:

    Woodguy: The other part of Katz’ power that you don’t mention.
    $4.5MM means a lot more to Nikitin than to Katz.
    Katz should be willing to set it on fire as a precedent.
    Nikitin should be able to be bullied into accept a ~$2.5MM Omsk deal in exchange for terminating his contract.
    Katz has a lot of power here.

    I don’t understand what you’re trying to say. $4.5MM means more to Nikitin, of course it does. But in turn, so does the extra $2M you (in Katz’s shoes) is trying to squeeze him out of.

    If someone offered you $2M to go to Bakersfield for the next eight months, would you? That’s essentially what that offer (if it’s really $2.5M) boils down to. If Nikitin really wants to go, he can dog it in Bakersfield so much they don’t want him there, and forces the teams hand that way.

    Either way, he’s got an ironclad contract for $4.5MM in his hand. The only power that the team has is to put him in Edmonton or Bakersfield. That’s a pretty lopsided hand in Nikitin’s favour. I sure as hell would take that hand if it was dealt to me.

  76. G Money says:

    böök¡je: Other than Nikitin can just report to sunny California. Should have put the AHLteam in Fort McMurray.

    Ha ha, yeah. Or as someone else suggested with the SD Gulls, hired Eakins to coach the AHL team. NOW you’ve got some power.

  77. G Money says:

    fifthcartel:
    I can’t believe they’re starting Ramo over Hiller.

    To be honest, it doesn’t surprise me much.

    Last season, Hiller started the season and put up a lousy .906 in an opening night loss to VAN.

    Then they played Ramo in Edmonton and he put up a stellar .950 (2g in 40 shots) in that painful loss I’m sure we all remember (Scrivvy putting up a stellar .808, 5g on 26 shots, pretty much telegraphing the sewering of the entire season).

    Coaches are superstitious and have long memories for these kinds of things. Suspect that might also have been part of what played into Eakins starting Scrivens that night, even though he struggled through pre-season.

    And unlike the Oilers, its not like either Ramo or Hiller had problems in preseason to begin with.

    I hope it bites the Flames in the ass, but sadly, I doubt it.

  78. Ryan says:

    G Money: I don’t understand what you’re trying to say.$4.5MM means more to Nikitin, of course it does.But in turn, so does the extra $2M you (in Katz’s shoes) is trying to squeeze him out of.

    If someone offered you $2M to go to Bakersfield for the next eight months, would you?That’s essentially what that offer (if it’s really $2.5M) boils down to.If Nikitin really wants to go, he can dog it in Bakersfield so much they don’t want him there, and forces the teams hand that way.

    Either way, he’s got an ironclad contract for $4.5MM in his hand.The only power that the team has is to put him in Edmonton or Bakersfield.That’s a pretty lopsided hand in Nikitin’s favour.I sure as hell would take that hand if it was dealt to me.

    C’mon man… If we still had Mact as GM, even he wouldn’t offer you $4.5m to play d for the Oilers. 🙂

  79. G Money says:

    Ryan: C’mon man…If we still had Mact as GM, even he wouldn’t offer you $4.5m to play d for the Oilers.

    But I have grit! I have intensity! I have eyeglow!

    I’m also in excellent shape! (round is a shape)

  80. G Money says:

    Anyone wanna do me a quick favour?

    Take a look at this list of defensemen: http://sports.yahoo.com/news/and-now-for-something-completely-serious–top-25-nhl-defensemen-rankings-for-2015-16-203303273-nhl.html

    and tell me if you think its a reasonable ranking (both as a top 25 as well as the order).

  81. Woodguy says:

    blainer,

    What makes people think that Talbot is the starter?

    I have no idea.

  82. Woodguy says:

    wheatnoil:
    Gregor tweets that a source tells him the Oilers have no plans to send Nikitin to the KHL right now. Want him in the AHL.

    https://twitter.com/jasongregor/status/651545222078402560

    That is the correct response by the Oilers.

  83. flyfish1168 says:

    G Money: But I have grit!I have intensity!I have eyeglow!

    I’m also in excellent shape!(round is a shape)

    So are you saying your no six pac but more like a keg???

  84. Younger Oil says:

    G Money:
    Anyone wanna do me a quick favour?

    Take a look at this list of defensemen: http://sports.yahoo.com/news/and-now-for-something-completely-serious–top-25-nhl-defensemen-rankings-for-2015-16-203303273-nhl.html

    and tell me if you think its a reasonable ranking (both as a top 25 as well as the order).

    I think the list is lacking in Norris Trophy potential according to a certain former GM!

    In all seriousness, I think that is a very justifiable list, I might switch out a few due to personal preference (for me, remove Chara and Myers and put Hjalmarsson and Brodie at the bottom of the 25), but you know hockey much better than me so I’d say that’s a great list!

  85. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide: One of my angriest moments of the last decade was listening to MacT on the radio talking about how much Petry was going to help a team after the deadline. Seemed delighted. Fuck me.

    I got so angry I wrote this: http://becauseoilers.blogspot.ca/2015/02/if-craig-mactavish-does-what-he-says.html

    It usually takes me weeks to put something together due to time constraints.

    I had that done in an afternoon.

  86. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909:
    For a farewell to Northlands, as a between period show I’d like to see Lowe, MacT and Howson get chased around the ice by Polar Bears.

    I’d consult with Alan Watt and then give them the zamboni treatment.

  87. smellyglove says:

    Mr. Lowetide:

    Last year you had the Oilers pegged at #10. This year you say they’re better and you have them at #11.

    What gives?

  88. böök¡je says:

    smellyglove:
    Mr. Lowetide:

    Last year you had the Oilers pegged at #10. This year you say they’re better and you have them at #11.

    What gives?

    Last year happened

  89. Woodguy says:

    G Money:
    Anyone wanna do me a quick favour?

    Take a look at this list of defensemen: http://sports.yahoo.com/news/and-now-for-something-completely-serious–top-25-nhl-defensemen-rankings-for-2015-16-203303273-nhl.html

    and tell me if you think its a reasonable ranking (both as a top 25 as well as the order).

    McDonaugh is way too high.

    So is Boumeester.

    So is Chara (its not 4 year ago)

    OEL too low

    Josi too low

    If you wanted a COL player on the list I’d pick Johnson and not Barrie. I like Barrie, but Johnson has put up fantastic WOWY for the last two years against the best dragging around a past his prime Hedja. Hedja was good, but not for the last 2 years.

    That’s from a first quick look.

    I also think that Gio without Brodie doesn’t make the list but Gio with Brodie is very good.

  90. blainer says:

    Woodguy,

    After the goaltending debacle from last year I actually posted on many occasions over the off season that management needed to stock the system with as many goalies as possible. they seemed to have done just that with Eetu going to ECHL..

    That gives us Talbot Nilsson Scrivens Eetu and LB. That’s actually pretty decent even without an established starter. Surely we can get one decent goalie there… My gut tells me Nillson is our guy. Really liked his positioning and his size is a big plus.. he actually reminds me of Bishop….

  91. Woodguy says:

    G Money: I don’t understand what you’re trying to say.$4.5MM means more to Nikitin, of course it does.But in turn, so does the extra $2M you (in Katz’s shoes) is trying to squeeze him out of.

    If someone offered you $2M to go to Bakersfield for the next eight months, would you?That’s essentially what that offer (if it’s really $2.5M) boils down to.If Nikitin really wants to go, he can dog it in Bakersfield so much they don’t want him there, and forces the teams hand that way.

    Either way, he’s got an ironclad contract for $4.5MM in his hand.The only power that the team has is to put him in Edmonton or Bakersfield.That’s a pretty lopsided hand in Nikitin’s favour.I sure as hell would take that hand if it was dealt to me.

    I worded that incorrectly, I can see why you are confused.

    I accidentally discounted that by the account he wants to go back to Russia, and that was a key part of what I was thinking about.

    Katz: “Save $2MM and you get to go to Russia? Blow me, I lost that much in my couch this morning. I want you gone, dissolve the contract”

    Consider that spot if you’re Niktiin:

    1) You don’t want to ride the buses in the AHL
    2) You can make ~$2MM in Russia
    3) You want to go back home (Nikitin never had a great grasp of English, can’t imagine its that comfortable to live in NA)
    4) California taxes make $2MM in Russia and $4.5MM near Lodi almost a wash.

    Now, you try to tell Katz he can only spend $2.5MM instead of spending $4.5MM.

    Katz doesn’t care about the $2.5MM that much (probably), but you care a lot about the $2MM you can make in Russia.,

    He can’t hold Katz hostage with $2.5MM, but Katz can hold him hostage by denying him $2MM in Russia.

    Yes, its $4.5MM here, but his money is tax free in Russia and California has pretty strong taxes on the top tier, its probably a wash with $2MM in Russia.

    Hope its more clear.

  92. Woodguy says:

    blainer:
    Woodguy,

    After the goaltending debacle from last year I actually posted on many occasions over the off season that managementneeded to stock the system with as many goalies as possible. they seemed to have done just that with Eetu going to ECHL..

    That gives us Talbot Nilsson Scrivens Eetu and LB. That’s actually pretty decent even without an established starter. Surely we can get one decent goalie there… My gut tells me Nillson is our guy. Really liked his positioning and his size is a big plus.. he actually reminds me of Bishop….

    I like both goalies.

    I like Talbot a lot, but Nilsson could certainly turn into something very good.

  93. Bootstrap Effexor says:

    RexLibris:
    OT, but in case this comes up during discussion:

    Woodguy Retweeted
    Darren Haynes ‏@DarrenWHaynes 45m45 minutes ago

    Heaviest NHL Teams:
    LA – 209.1
    Wpg – 208.2
    Ari – 208.0
    Col – 207.1

    Lightest NHL Teams:
    Van – 194.7
    Cgy – 195.5
    Car – 197.2
    Chi – 197.6

    Given LT’s predictions here, which I have to agree with save for San Jose, I think we can probably put the “heavy teams win the West” thing to bed for a little while.

    Is this weighted by playing time? Cause we’ve got at least one guy who tilts the bench for 55m, assuming he dresses.

    Furthermore, playing time should count negative for forwards after twenty minutes, and negative for defensemen after twenty-five minutes (but not by a lot).

  94. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy,

    If its a wash on money for Nikitin, then your argument is quite valid. I was thinking of a $2.5 million difference per year in which case, I would expect he would choose the AHL busses given that it’s probably the last time he will ever earn significant money playing hockey.

    If the money is close after taxes are taken into account, then there a reasonable probability that Nikitin would break his contract.

    With that said, what’s the over/under on actually getting paid in the KHL right now AND are $2 million USD contracts still a thing with the rubble lower than low?

    Any way, I totally agree that Katz should use whatever leverage he has. It’s a question of how much leverage he has.

  95. G Money says:

    Younger Oil,
    Woodguy,

    Thanks.

    I’m doing a little experiment, using this list as the ‘subjective control’, and then running a Spearman rank correlation for this list vs the rankings of those D using a handful of different fancystats.

    Just curious to see if any of the fancystats we commonly use match up with a subjective list.

    Short answer: not even close. Doesn’t surprise me much, I’ve always struggled with the value of many fancystats when it comes to D.

    But a lot of that depends on whether the ranking in the list is reasonable.

    Either way I guess I should listen to Rex and PUBLISH!

  96. Lowetide says:

    smellyglove:
    Mr. Lowetide:

    Last year you had the Oilers pegged at #10. This year you say they’re better and you have them at #11.

    What gives?

    At the time I made the projection last summer, it was assumed the Oilers would get a No. 2 center. didn’t happen and even more ridiculous MacT let the goaling burn.

    IF Chiarelli does nothing to address the issues that will surely face this team, it won’t end well. Other teams adapt, the Oilers have to as well.

  97. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: Hiller Ramo was a good combo last year. But they never posted phenomenal numbers over an entire season.

    They stole games the Flames had no right winning (one night Chicago out-corsi’d them 70/30 or some crazy number, but Hiller won it for them).

    Then when that ship hit Charybdis the shooting %’s soared.

    The really wacky thing is the signal from mgmt this year so far is they aren’t really interested in keeping Hiller around, to the extent that Ramo is starting the season.

    Hiller is a better goalie than Ramo, and the Flames are saying they aren’t going to do anything “experimental” to screw with their plans to improve on last year, yet they are more or less pulling the rug out from under the guy who helped get them there last season.

    I have a post half done from the summer about this.

    Many people look at CAL’s yearly numbers and say “they were about ave in SV% so goaltending didn’t help them”

    Obviously they didn’t watch the spreadsheets close enough!

    In Nov (I think) CAL had a ridiculous SV% and PDO and banked a ton of points. (20pts in 14gms iirc)

    Rest of the year they ran just over .500, but had to run hot in spots (scoring with the goalied pulled like it was routine, etc) to get there.

    They were a mirage, but the mirage was only in spots so its tough to see unless you stare at sections of the year.

    I’ll probably get around to finishing it now that this jogged my memory of having it half written.

    If were a good post I would have finished it, so its probably half assed.

  98. jimmers2 says:

    Woodguy,

    WG, That was a fantastic post (the link to the Petry rant). Thanks for bringing me back to read it a second time. It was this week last year (with Marincin and Petry not starting, Lander and Yak wasted resources) that really launched my disillusionment with MacT, and it was utterly clinched by the miserable way the Petry affair ended despite his essential role on the team, and by the ever-deepening melodrama that had ahold of every normal function of running the team. What an incredible breath of fresh air the Nouvelle Regime has been. One can quibble here and there but decisions make sense. Winston Smith has escaped Room 101. The utter incoherence that lasted until the draft lottery is gone. There is a way for things to get better.

  99. böök¡je says:

    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being a Stanley Cup appearance and a 1 being another ‘Draft Party’ in Edmonton next spring, how confident are all of you in the Oilers Goaltending situation?

  100. G Money says:

    böök¡je,

    Am I allowed to give a quantum-based answer and simultaneously occupy two different values (and neither)?

  101. Lowetide says:

    böök¡je:
    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being a Stanley Cup appearance and a 1 being another ‘Draft Party’ in Edmonton next spring, how confident are all of you in the Oilers Goaltending situation?

    8. Talbot is a very good bet, Nilsson is interesting but a wild card. Chiarelli will move to fix things if it heads toward the ditch.

  102. böök¡je says:

    G Money:
    böök¡je,

    Am I allowed to give a quantum-based answer and simultaneously occupy two different values (and neither)?

    I am prepared to accept that if things go batshit crazy again that the Oilers could be declared to be in a state of quantum weirdness.

  103. Магия 10 says:

    böök¡je: I am prepared to accept that if things go batshit crazy again that the Oilers could be declared to be in a state of quantum weirdness.

    That’s the thing. You go to measure them. They collapse.

  104. JDï™ says:

    böök¡je: if things go batshit crazy again

    The Swarm™ needed more entanglement. And more cowbell.

  105. Pouzar says:

    Missing the game Thursday but am giddy about the start of the AHL season on Friday.

  106. John Chambers says:

    böök¡je:
    On a scale of 1 to 10 with 10 being a Stanley Cup appearance and a 1 being another ‘Draft Party’ in Edmonton next spring, how confident are all of you in the Oilers Goaltending situation?

    Probably a 5. Talbot was stellar in his cameo but there’s some possibility of downside here. If goaltending is a liability again, like LT says, it’ll have to be Chiarelli’s biggest priority.

  107. Kitchener says:

    böök¡je,

    NHL: 5 / AHL: 9.5

    The AHL situation is ideal for both men. For Scrivens, he’s hungry for his next chance and should bring his A game, whatever that is, which should be above average for the AHL. For Brossoit, it’s a perfect set of ingredients:
    – no guaranteed ice with Scrivens setting the bar at NHL-backup level
    – a fantastic communicator as his goalie partner (Ben) who sure as heck seems like a genuinely nice guy
    – a recent NHLer as his goalie partner who can share very current NHL info while on the bus
    – a recent NHLer as his goalie partner who will be doing A-level preparation to re-earn a spot in the NHL

    Brossoit gets an ideal development environment and Ben gets a chance to shine. If the Condors don’t get above-average goaltending this season I’ll be surprised.

    But back to your question: I’m very confident in the organizational depth, but I am not at all confident that there’s a man ready to start 65 games posting .920. Or that there will regularly be a .920 fellow between the pipes on a given night. The GM made excellent bets and that’s all a fan can ask for, but this team is riding the risky rails out of necessity and no-one can reasonably guess how the year will play out.

    Personally, I’m bullish on Nilsson. By eye he looked great in preseason. Yes, the numbers too, but a big body that always seems to calmly be in the right position? Love it.

  108. Kitchener says:

    Gord forbid, if the Oil end up in the basement again this year, the #1 option for meme buzz word up to now is “why”.

    “The players understand the why of why we’re in last place.”

    “Thanks to Todd, it’s not just ’30th place, baby’, but they understand the why of why they’re in 30th place.”

    Forgive me, Gord, I know not what I do.

    Edit: As penance, let me say I’m THRILLED with what I’ve seen from Todd so far. “The why” is the players’ buzz word when talking about the coaches is all. Long live the why.

  109. Factotum says:

    Hunter, please put me down for 80 points, which is one point better than the last 82 games prior to Eakins’ hiring. Improvement, at last!

  110. Dennis L says:

    LT,

    Nice summary of thoughts in the morning piece re: Draisaitl. Being thrilled that the club is taking development decisions we harp on about is a nice change, and you’re right to express bafflement since the reason we needed to harp on about it was always due to the obvious talents of the players in question – we wanted their help now, but wished they had been allowed to develop into more rounded players.

    The point about Slepyshev making the team while Nurse has not yet, and you can add Draisaitl to that thought, also follows recurring items around these parts, namely that wingers tend to develop faster than centres, which is a harder position to master, which tend to develop faster than defencemen, which is a still-harder position to master. It should be expected then that, given prudent developmental decisions, the winger Slepyshev should be ready before the centre Draisaitl, who should be ready before the defenceman Nurse, taking into account the effect on their development the ice-time and linemates they’d get at the NHL and AHL levels, as was mentioned by others.

    We’re just lucky all three of these substantial talents probably emerge as ready within a single season.

  111. YEG FOLK says:

    Hunter – put me down for 79 points sir.

    Travelling to Nashville this weekend to catch my first live viewing of McDavid and the 2015/16 Oilers. Friday night at Grand Ole Opry, Saturday night hockey and Sunday afternoon Titans game… should be a blast.

  112. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: I would have thought Hiller-Ortio would be a decent tandem.

    Ortio, on paper, doesn’t look like that great a goalie.

    That being said…”on paper, voodoo, goalies…yadda, yadda, yadda”.

  113. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: I have a post half done from the summer about this.

    Many people look at CAL’s yearly numbers and say “they were about ave in SV% so goaltending didn’t help them”

    Obviously they didn’t watch the spreadsheets close enough!

    In Nov (I think) CAL had a ridiculous SV% and PDO and banked a ton of points. (20pts in 14gms iirc)

    Rest of the year they ran just over .500, but had to run hot in spots (scoring with the goalied pulled like it was routine, etc) to get there.

    They were a mirage, but the mirage was only in spots so its tough to see unless you stare at sections of the year.

    I’ll probably get around to finishing it now that this jogged my memory of having it half written.

    If were a good post I would have finished it, so its probably half assed.

    Yep, there was a great graph I saw here around March that tracked their sh%, sv% and wins, and when one cratered, almost as if on cue, the other soared.

    I’d say they sold their souls to the Devil for that season if I didn’t have it on good authority they don’t actually have them.

  114. böök¡je says:

    Lowetide: 8. Talbot is a very good bet, Nilsson is interesting but a wild card. Chiarelli will move to fix things if it heads toward the ditch.

    RE has left the building 🙂

    I am concerned about none of the goalies being proven, but the reality is that each of them has potential to be a starter, right down to the #4 guy. That’s a good bit of depth to juggle if you end up in trouble with Talbot.

    Added to that is a GM who seems to know how to juggle and even, ‘gasp’, how to make a mid-season trade…

    I’m a 6.5 I think, maybe a 7

  115. G Money says:

    With Neon Leon heading to B’field, is anyone else hoping at some point to see a Draisaitl-Yakimov-Khaira line?

    650 pounds of DryYakHair.

    Yowsers.

  116. RexLibris says:

    böök¡je: I am prepared to accept that if things go batshit crazy again that the Oilers could be declared to be in a state of quantum weirdness.

    The Oilers were an excellent quantum example last season.

    Once you thought you had determined one variable, it’s alternate was undefinable. At no point could you pin down both simultaneously.

    And as far as entanglement goes, well, the quantum state of the Oilers became inextricably entangled with the professional states of Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Stu MacGregor.

    They were our Schroedinger’s cats, such that once the single particle that was the Oilers’ season expired, they existed in a dual state of being neither dead nor alive.

    It took Bob Nicholson to open the box and reveal to us what the final state truly was for our beloved hydrocarbon particle and it’s attendant felines.

  117. RexLibris says:

    Because I think we have some gentlemen here who hail from agrarian or rural backgrounds and who may know a thing or two about motorcycles:

    http://imgur.com/gallery/AJOIKXE

    Motorcycle built from a freaking tractor.

    Mileage is probably shite, and I bet it handles like a dead mule hauling a boat anchor, but it’s an eye-catcher.

  118. Shafty19 says:

    Woodguy: I got so angry I wrote this: http://becauseoilers.blogspot.ca/2015/02/if-craig-mactavish-does-what-he-says.html
    It usually takes me weeks to put something together due to time constraints.
    I had that done in an afternoon.

    Woodguy, great stuff. There are some astounding quotes there from MacT.

    First, he talks about how Nikitin was “starting to get up to speed” and would make a good 2nd pairing with Fayne “going into next season.” (!)

    But my favourite part is this:

    “And then we have Andrew Ference and a number of developing players as well that gives a foundation of something going forward and familiarity of personnel going into next year so there’s not going to be 10 new bodies coming into that dressing room….”

    Guess MacT was right about something. There will only be 9 new bodies on Thursday night’s roster.

  119. One-Timer says:

    RexLibris: The Oilers were an excellent quantum example last season.

    Once you thought you had determined one variable, it’s alternate was undefinable. At no point could you pin down both simultaneously.

    And as far as entanglement goes, well, the quantum state of the Oilers became inextricably entangled with the professional states of Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Stu MacGregor.

    They were our Schroedinger’s cats, such that once the single particle that was the Oilers’ season expired, they existed in a dual state of being neither dead nor alive.

    It took Bob Nicholson to open the box and reveal to us what the final state truly was for our beloved hydrocarbon particle and it’s attendant felines.

    Wonderful stuff. Like garlic to HFBoard vampires.

    …neither dead nor alive…
    MacT right now reminds me of Winston Smith. Everything has been revealed to him, and now he’s just sitting in the cafe, smiling blankly, waiting for Big Brother Bob to come take him away and put him out of his misery.

  120. wheatnoil says:

    RexLibris: The Oilers were an excellent quantum example last season.

    Once you thought you had determined one variable, it’s alternate was undefinable. At no point could you pin down both simultaneously.

    And as far as entanglement goes, well, the quantum state of the Oilers became inextricably entangled with the professional states of Kevin Lowe, Craig MacTavish and Stu MacGregor.

    They were our Schroedinger’s cats, such that once the single particle that was the Oilers’ season expired, they existed in a dual state of being neither dead nor alive.

    It took Bob Nicholson to open the box and reveal to us what the final state truly was for our beloved hydrocarbon particle and it’s attendant felines.

    And yet, they are still not in a final state. MacT and Lowe were both simultaneously fired yet retained. They are at the draft, training camp… everywhere yet nowhere. They are part of the decision makers’ group yet all their past decisions are being undone. They trade Marincin and yet Nikitin is sent down.

    Like Schrodinger’s cat, they are both alive and dead even now.

  121. AsiaOil says:

    Well boys – Asiaoil and couple of others welcomed you to the SS Titanic on the day they fired Kruger and hired “the hair”. There was no honeymoon for me and I even changed my handle to DarkAsia to mourn the death of hope. MacT f***ed with karma the way he hired Eakin and fired Kruger – and karma has a way of dealing people who do that.

    As for Nikitin – man what a spiteful bunch. The guy isn’t good enough, never was good enough to justify that contract. Blame the guys who signed him. His agent probably gave the team an option of going the the KHL – that’s his job. Niki will report where ever the hell the Oilers send him and he will smile a $4 million smile the whole season in the AHL if that’s how it pans out.

  122. Yeti says:

    AsiaOil: As for Nikitin – man what a spiteful bunch. The guy isn’t good enough, never was good enough to justify that contract. Blame the guys who signed him. His agent probably gave the team an option of going the the KHL – that’s his job. Niki will report where ever the hell the Oilers send him and he will smile a $4 million smile the whole season in the AHL if that’s how it pans out.

    Yes, but we should also place significant blame the owner who hired his buddy to be GM. When you start with nepotism from the top, it doesn’t breed transparent or accountable structures further down. Katz, for all his investment, has treated the team like a play thing and we’ve witnessed the sad results of that over the past few years. It must be incredibly difficult for Chiarelli to do his job when the previous GM is chumming it up with the owner right as you are trying to clean up the mess he made.

  123. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: Yep, there was a great graph I saw here around March that tracked their sh%, sv% and wins, and when one cratered, almost as if on cue, the other soared.

    I’d say they sold their souls to the Devil for that season if I didn’t have it on good authority they don’t actually have them.

    Maybe the sold some of the extra vaccines that they stole from the children of Calgary?

  124. Kmart99 says:

    wheatnoil: And yet, they are still not in a final state. MacT and Lowe were both simultaneously fired yet retained. They are at the draft, training camp… everywhere yet nowhere. They are part of the decision makers’ group yet all their past decisions are being undone. They trade Marincin and yet Nikitin is sent down.

    Like Schrodinger’s cat, they are both alive and dead even now.

    They seem unaffected by the observer though. Despite constant measurement, the double slit that was Scrivens/Fasth ensured that the wave of goals remained a wave, never collapsing to a solid state despite the scrutiny/measurement/observer.

    If only we were able to empty rexall, shut down the cameras, and cancel the radio and streams…. Then with no eyes on the team, who knows where in the standings theyd land. Don’t you dare look at the standings though, for it will be highly likely they collapse to a single location at the bottom of the standings(peak of the wave).

    If nobody’s looking, they are as good as we want.

  125. Zack says:

    Shafty19: Woodguy, great stuff. There are some astounding quotes there from MacT.

    First, he talks about how Nikitin was “starting to get up to speed” and would make a good 2nd pairing with Fayne “going into next season.” (!)

    But my favourite part is this:

    “And then we have Andrew Ference and a number of developing players as well that gives a foundation of something going forward and familiarity of personnel going into next year so there’s not going to be 10 new bodies coming into that dressing room….”

    Guess MacT was right about something. There will only be 9 new bodies on Thursday night’s roster.

    This makes me feel sick. Can you imagine if management would allow last years roster to stagnate? Literally the definition of insanity.

  126. PhrankLee says:

    I think any further reference to such down hearted times should be prefixed with either the intro to Bruce Springsteen’s The River or The Band’s The Night They Drove Ol’ Dixie Down.

    Petry and the myopia surrounding his assessment by MacT is unforgivable.

    I cannot believe he still has a job. Gobsmacked.

  127. B S says:

    Woodguy: Maybe the sold some of the extra vaccines that they stole from the children of Calgary?

    now, now, I’m sure managment told them they were preventing those kids from getting autism.

  128. AZOIL says:

    G Money,

    Where is Khairia?

    G Money:
    With Neon Leon heading to B’field, is anyone else hoping at some point to see a Draisaitl-Yakimov-Khaira line?

    650 pounds of DryYakHair.

    Yowsers.

    Where is Khaira?

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