BLUE COLLAR

“As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly.” -Arthur Carlson.

Oilers fans enter the year raving about Justin Schultz and wondering about Andrej Sekera, when history suggests we have it ass backwards. What side to bet? I’ll take history for the win, Alex.

HOW MANY RIVERS TO CROSS?

Edmonton used 13 defenders a year ago and will probably use a similar number this coming season. Why? Injuries, ineffectiveness, trades, maybe a defender questions someone about the importance of fitness, it goes on. Here is last year’s blue in total minutes:

  1. Justin Schultz 1831:31
  2. Mark Fayne 1327:19
  3. Andrew Ference 1321:23
  4. Oscar Kefbom 1319:56
  5. Jeff Petry 1236:03
  6. Nikita Nikitin 824:50
  7. Martin Marincin 764:31
  8. Keith Aulie 443:25
  9. Brad Hunt 214:20
  10. Brandon Davidson 181:39
  11. Jordan Oesterle 88:10
  12. David Musil 79:13
  13. Darnell Nurse 33:59

The No. 8 guy (Aulie) played in 31 games, so depth is going to be needed for sure and the Oilers will use some Bakersfield men in 2015-16.

  • Sekera—Fayne: They weren’t stellar in pre-season but they’re new to each other and Sekera is new to the team and the conference. They should be an able NHL pairing and might be a good second pairing. They are Edmonton’s No. 1 duo.
  • Klefbom—Schultz: I’m fully prepared to admit that we may be spending the next decade talking about that one training camp when Justin Schultz looked right. We’re early days, men. Oscar Klefbom makes things better.
  • Reinhart—Gryba: They’re too similar, I think Davidson may end up getting a push at some point, or they’ll just call up Nurse. Reinhart has looked good in TC but it’s early early.
  • Ference—Davidson: I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see Ference as an “eye in the sky” by mid-season, the way they talk about him suggests there’s zero chance they pass on the opportunity to buy him out next year. Davidson is still here and we’ll see, suspect Reinhart will close up the No. 5 job by Christmas.

nurse draisaitl

BAKERSFIELD

At some point during the first four games, that third pairing (no matter who is there) is probably going to get walked and wheeled and hammer and tongs won’t be enough. Griffin Reinhart to my eye isn’t slow, but he’s not so fast that covering for Eric Gryba’s speed is possible. I think that’s the pairing Edmonton probably goes with most of the time on this road trip and the other two (Ference and Davidson) have issues of their own. In a way, Reinhart—Davidson might be the most effective in the modern game but I doubt we see two rookies back there often.

Darnell Nurse has been blocked by the addition of Reinhart, who has one year of pro hockey and was acquired by Peter Chiarelli. If Reinhart was entering a stable defense with a reliable mentor I believe things would go pretty well. As this is not the case, I wonder how long before we see our first defensive shuffle.

Among Condors blue, Darnell Nurse would appear to be the obvious first recall. Nikita Nikitin has been sent down and I don’t think he’ll be back. After that? David Musil, Jordan Oesterle and then several youngsters trying to find their way like Dillon Simpson (injured), Joey Laleggia (impressive) and Martin Gernat (MIA since last season but maybe with a chance if he gets healthy).

I think Darnell Nurse will be a factor sooner than later, based on merit.

CHIARELLI’S OILERS

Tomorrow night’s game will see the Oilers carrying a large group of newcomers. Peter Chiarelli wasted little time in changing things around and the newcomers may be here a long time.

PAT QUINN, OPENING NIGHT 2009

  • L1: Jacques—Horcoff—Hemsky
  • L2: Penner—Cogliano—Brule
  • L3: O’Sullivan—Comrie—Stone
  • L4: Moreau—Gagner—Stortini
  • D1: Grebeshkov—Gilbert
  • D2: Souray—Staios
  • D3: Visnovsky—Smid
  • G1: Khabibulin, Deslauriers

TODD MCLELLAN, OPENING NIGHT 2015 (PROJECTED)

  • L1: Pouliot—Nugent-Hopkins—Purcell
  • L2: Hall—McDavid*—Slepyshev*
  • L3: Korpikoski*—Lander—Yakupov
  • L4: Hendricks—Letestu*—Klinkhammer
  • D1: Sekera*—Fayne
  • D2: Klefbom—Schultz
  • D3: Reinhart*—Gryba*
  • G1: Talbot*—Nilsson*

Nine names on the list, eight probably get into game action in St. Louis. Two new wingers but the biggest change is up the middle, the exact spot Edmonton needed help. I threw Pat Quinn’s group in here to show the contrast at defense. Edmonton remains extremely young and inexperienced at the position. This also shows McLellan’s handling of the roster (Quinn wanted a policeman on every street corner) and I also think it’s kind of funny that the Oilers—in a decade of awful—felt they were deep enough to run Lubo third pair on an opening night.

I think we should expect Peter Chiarelli to be active in the trade market this season. The team’s ‘keepers’ as I see it are Sekera, Klefbom, Reinhart and Nurse—all others could be available. I would think a Fayne+ trade for a more mobile defender (RH) is possible, and I also think Justin Schultz will be watched closely. It’s possible we see the entire RH side replaced and honestly that’s probably a reasonable way to address the blue.

The defense isn’t better, it’s just different. Peter Chiarelli was aggressive and active in his first season as Bruins GM, making several moves to address the blue. I believe we see the same thing in Edmonton, beginning with the recall of Darnell Nurse in the first half of the season.

History is a bitch, we would be wise to trust it when names like Justin Schultz and Mark Fayne are mentioned as cornerstones of a top-four blue.

BLUNT GIF

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy show, beginning 10 this morning on TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey. We’ll discuss the fact Edmonton (once again) doesn’t get to take part in the opening night fun and the roster proper of these Oilers.
  • Nathan Dempsey, Vimy Hockey Campus Director. Former Leaf will talk about opening night and tryouts for teams—preparation and learning from failure.
  • Gregg Krupa, Detroit News. We’ll talk about these Red Wings, who will feature the first impact teenage since Yzerman.
  • Jesse Spector, Sporting News. MLB playoffs underway and there’s excitement across the league. Can anyone stop a Blue Jays-Cardinals WS?

10-1260 text, @Lowetide twitter. Talk soon!

 

 

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

165 Responses to "BLUE COLLAR"

  1. Visually better says:

    You know what the oilers need? John Carlson. That’s what the oilers need. That’s all, have a good day. Hockey is here :))

  2. Zack says:

    http://mayorsmanor.com/2013/04/the-mess-in-edmonton-through-the-eyes-of-a-former-nhl-coach/

    I read an interesting article the other day about Dr. Chad Moreau and his time spent with the Oilers as a strength and conditioning coach. There were a lot of interesting pieces about the dynamics of the job in relation to management, coaching staff and personal as well as the influence Pronger had and then how things changed (for the worse), once he left and the team got a whole lot younger.

  3. Woodguy says:

    I think Chia at most tinkers with the blue this year when he has th opportunity to add on the cheap. (or subtract for that matter)

    The kind of change they need rarely, rarely happens in-season.

    Next summer is when the dynamite gets placed under the bridge that is the Oiler Dcorps.

  4. frjohnk says:

    Woodguy:
    I think Chia at most tinkers with the blue this year when he has th opportunity to add on the cheap. (or subtract for that matter)

    The kind of change they need rarely, rarely happens in-season.

    Next summer is when the dynamite gets placed under the bridge that is the Oiler Dcorps.

    I think that Sekara, Klefbom, Reinhart and Nurse are close to sure bets as being here next year.

    If Schultz continues his preseason play throughout the regular season, he has a good chance of being here next year.

    Not sure Fayne stays.

    Ference bought out.

    Gryba and Davidson gone.

    If Slepyshev has a good rookie year ( 15 goals) I can see Chia moving one of our wingers for help on the back end.

  5. Ducey says:

    They will be mixing and matching the D all year.

    Hitchcock said yesterday that his team got away from smashmouth, in your face hockey last year, but that they want to get back to it this year.

    Gryba is a good fit for a game vs. St Louis as long as they keep him away from Tarasenko.

  6. frjohnk says:

    Ducey:
    They will be mixing and matching the D all year.

    Hitchcock said yesterday that his team got away from smashmouth, in your face hockey last year, but that they want to get back to it this year.

    Gryba is a good fit for a game vs. St Louis as long as they keep him away from Tarasenko.

    Put Gryba up against Backes.

    Klefbom against Tarasenko.

  7. Caramel Obvious says:

    Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.

  8. dustrock says:

    I picked 88 points for the OIlers, but I’m thinking 80 points is probably more realistic.

    We can talk about how Talbot played on a Rags team that was only average defensively, but at least they were veteran players, with an experienced coach, playing a system they already knew.

    I can see Talbot’s stats suffering the first half of the year. In fact, it’s going to be interesting watching the Oilers’ rolling defensive/goalie stats this year, especially in the 2nd half of the year.

    We all know last year was the floor. They simply cannot be worse. So this year will be an improvement.

    I think sometimes we look at the roster in a vacuum, and think “95 points is possible, with the right PDO”. If this was McLellan’s 2nd year with this roster, maybe.

    But the Vancouver games were instructive in that we’re going to see an 82 game “teachable moments” season. The Oilers success will depend on how quickly they pick up on what McLellan is teaching them.

  9. theres oil in virginia says:

    Turkeys can fly.

  10. dustrock says:

    theres oil in virginia: Turkeys can fly.

    “This autumn, imagine a world where turkeys can fly. Welcome to McDavidland. Starring Ryan Gosling”

  11. frjohnk says:

    dustrock: We all know last year was the floor. They simply cannot be worse. So this year will be an improvement.

    While not exact, these words have uttered on this blog at the start of every season since October 2010.

  12. hunter1909 says:

    Hunter1909’s Official(tm) 2015-16 Oilers’s Season Death or Glory Contest: Prizes for the winner(s).

    Predict the 2015-16 final points total for the Oilers.

    Contest open until the puck drops Thursday.

  13. PhrankLee says:

    New season! Getting ready for the annual canoe trip on Thanksgiving weekend. I cannot wait to watch the new kid in his first NHL game before we set off.

    The gravity of it is enormous. Such an important night coming. Cleared my schedule, no interruptions. Tomorrow Connor McDavid lays down the gauntlet.

    Here’s to you all, raucous assembly. I’m so ready for a new season.

    Cheers.

  14. PhrankLee says:

    Woodguy: Next summer is when the dynamite gets placed under the bridge that is the Oiler Dcorps.

    Which was the “bill of goods” I think DE was referring to in that sad presser.

  15. hunter1909 says:

    PhrankLee,

    Please can I have your email address?

    Have got it, along with the others, but don’t exactly know which one is yours.

    : p

    Thank you.

  16. Aitch says:

    We’re in agreement about the four that will remain (Sekera, Nurse, Klefbom, Reinhart) but that only leaves two more spots going forward. If the team is going to make some moves during this season, it’s gonna have to be big moves, especially if they have any plans to bring Nurse up. Trading Fayne for another RD doesn’t clear room for Nurse this season.

  17. McSorley33 says:

    frjohnk,

    Put Gryba up against Backes.
    Klefbom against Tarasenko.
    ****************************************************
    The game is in St.Louis……some people are going to go to great lengths to find Mr Gryba and Mr. Reinhart on the ice….

  18. viking chug says:

    I am worried about the Reinhart/Gryba pairing too. In my opinion the struggles of Nikitin and Ference have something to do with the high-turnover, chaotic nature of the gifted but inexperienced Oil and their inability to turn and cover without getting burned. Their deficiencies could be hidden a bit better on a more structured half-court team. I worry that the speed in that pairing could be problematic and would think Brandon Davidson might a better partner for Reinhart. I watched OKC the last couple of years pretty closely and Brandon was consistently impressive.

    On a different note, check out the tweet my buddy sent the Dangler, who quickly retweeted it. I’ve been to Oktoberfest a few times with him but he’s never looked this good. Would have been cool to see the reactions of drunken German hockey fans.

    https://twitter.com/subpopsteve/status/651625435973840896/photo/1

  19. PhrankLee says:

    hunter1909,

    christophari9@gmail

  20. Bank Shot says:

    Put me down for 82 points.

    Reinhart does look slow for the record. And he passes into the equipment of opposing forecheckers too often for my liking. If we had better NHL D, he’d be doing another stint in the minors.

    I worry about the third pairing, and also pairings 1 and 2. We just don’t have any top tier D-men in Edmonton and most of the good teams have at least one.

  21. oliveoilers says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.

    Happy Hyperbole Day to you too!

  22. Rube Foster says:

    LT,
    Are you stating “History for the win” to be taken as – Todd McLellan has a history of helping young NHL defenseman to develop into accomplished NHL vets?

    Dear Hunter,
    As you can see, I’m feeling levels of “Doris Day” optimism today. Please put me down for a “Clap, Clap” and a McDavid – 97 points!

    Hey boys & girls, the sun is shining and we’re in first place today!!

  23. Lowetide says:

    Rube Foster:
    LT,
    Are you stating “History for the win” to be taken as – Todd McLellan has a history of helping young NHL defenseman to develop into accomplished NHL vets?

    Dear Hunter,
    As you can see, I’m feeling levels of “Doris Day” optimism today. Please put me down for a “Clap, Clap” and a McDavid – 97 points!

    Hey boys & girls, the sun is shining and we’re in first place today!!

    No, I’m saying history for the win as “Schultz is still Schultz and Sekera is a successful NHL defenseman”

  24. Woodguy says:

    PhrankLee: Which was the “bill of goods” I think DE was referring to in that sad presser.

    I think the bill of goods was MacT telling Eakins something like:

    “Don’t worry about wins/losses, just get them playing NHL hockey. You’ve got lots of time”

  25. PhrankLee says:

    Woodguy: I think the bill of goods was MacT telling Eakins something like:
    “Don’t worry about wins/losses, just get them playing NHL hockey. You’ve got lots of time”

    That’s my take on it exactly.

  26. godot10 says:

    Reinhart and Gryba are going to get 35% D-zone starts. Gryba’s mobility issues matter less there. Their job is very simple. Prevent a cycle from being started off a face-off, and make simple plays to get the puck out of the zone.

    Gryba was #5 in Ottawa, on a team that made the playoffs twice in the last two years. He was effective in an limited role. He will be effective in a limited role here also. Reinhart is being tasked to do what he is best at, although inexperienced at in the NHL. Heavy repetition at playing to his best skills. I expect rapid improvement. Davidson will sub in if either struggles too much. 3 guys, two jobs. None of these guys are being tasked to be dynamic D.

    The pros of Gryba’s game vs. the cons were lest visible during pre-season. They balance shifts when the real games start.

  27. JDï™ says:

    Woodguy: just get them playing NHL hockey.

    aaaaaand /job.

  28. G Money says:

    godot10,

    I think there’s a lot of truth in that assessment. Or at least, I hope there is!

  29. viking chug says:

    godot10:
    Reinhart and Gryba are going to get 35% D-zone starts.Gryba’s mobility issues matter less there.Their job is very simple.Prevent a cycle from being started off a face-off, and make simple plays to get the puck out of the zone.

    Gryba was #5 in Ottawa, on a team that made the playoffs twice in the last two years.He was effective in an limited role.He will be effective in a limited role here also.Reinhart is being tasked to do what he is best at, although inexperienced at in the NHL. Heavy repetition at playing to his best skills.I expect rapid improvement.Davidson will sub in if either struggles too much.3 guys, two jobs. None of these guys are being tasked to be dynamic D.

    The pros of Gryba’s game vs. the cons were lest visible during pre-season.They balance shifts when the real games start.

    That makes sense. Gryba seems a better fit against a team like the Blues. Especially after Hitchcock’s quotes about getting back to “a more aggressive, even reckless, style of play”.

  30. cranky says:

    Hunter’s death march guess: 83 pts!

    >.500 hockey, baby!

  31. viking chug says:

    Hunter, I will guess 88 points this season in honour of Mr. Davidson.

  32. knighttown says:

    Around this time of the year, after this post, I like to put up the forwards TOI/season.

    RNH- 1558
    Eberle- 1539
    Purcell- 1410
    Yak- 1251
    Hall- 1020
    Pouliot- 960
    Hendricks- 937
    Gordon- 904
    Roy- 731
    Perron- 644
    Lander- 570
    Arcobello- 554

    Justin Schultz played WAY more than any other Oiler. Ference, Klefbom and Fayne who were 3-4-5-6 guys played more than every forward except Nuge, Ebs and Teddy. This is not abnormal…happens every year. Defensemen spend way more time on the ice than forwards. Every PK a forward sits. 4-on-4 a Forward sits. OT a forward sits.

    Be prepared that Davidson, Ference, Gryba and Reinhart will play more than guys like Eberle, Yakupov, Pouliot and Lander. Probably only 93, 4 and 97 play more than Davidson, Ference, Gryba ad Reinhart and even those three studs will be lapped by Klefbom, Schultz and Sekera.

    To me, this is the X factor about why teams that appear to suck on paper like Nashville are miles better than the Oilers; because they have good players on the ice more than we do (especially if you add in Rinne vs Scrivens at 60 minutes per game). We have more good players but the players they have that are good play more.

    You couldn’t watch last year’s playoffs when Victor Hedman made Steven Stamkos an afterthought and Duncan Keith was far more valuable than Kane (or even…gasp!..Toews) and not know this to be true. And if you missed this, I point you to Chris Pronger 2006 playoffs.

    This is why I’m not sure we win until we the guys playing +1200 minutes per year are out scorers.

    MacTavish’s handling of Petry got lost in the shuffle but was crippling for this organization. I’d trade Eberle for him.

  33. böök¡je says:

    Those of you who don’t know what the turkey quote is about need to watch this

    https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lf3mgmEdfwg

  34. su_dhillon says:

    Pre-Season is a funny thing. Every year we tell ourselves not to take anything in the pre season too seriously, we know the rosters aren’t NHL quality, we know the games are played at a different pace and we know there is nothing at stake for the teams, obviously there are jobs at stake but not in wins and losses.
    Vets with track records often ease their way in, we worry they look slow or hesitant but the they know it’s a long haul and September matters little. On the flip side there are always young guys and guys with a lot to prove who are going a hundred miles an hour that stand out but rarely is it sustained. Yet every year we fall for it.

    I have zero concern about Sekera, no idea why anyone would. We know he is a quality NHL defender, he has been for season after season on multiple teams. He’s real.
    Jultz? it would be a major boost to this team but forgive me if its hard to believe that all it took for him to be a player was a year summer of cross fit and now he has it all figured out. Lets see what its like playing shift after shift against top 6 forwards trying to win the game because it means 2 points. I have my doubts.

  35. böök¡je says:

    Woodguy: I think the bill of goods was MacT telling Eakins something like:

    “Don’t worry about wins/losses, just get them playing NHL hockey. You’ve got lots of time”

    I’d bet that the phrase culture change was used.

  36. 4th_Line_Plug says:

    What would Pouliot and Fayne have cost is they were signed this summer instead of last? 3.5 and 2.5 respectively, both with less term? No one is going to take Fayne at his contract when they could have had Franson for a similar price. A contender might take Ference at the deadline if Edmonton retains salary and then had to eat some of the buyout cost.

    Gryba looked better than Fayne the entire preseason, I would be more worried about Fayne, his contract, his slow feet, and his bad passes.

  37. McSorley33 says:

    godot10,

    Gryba was #5 in Ottawa, on a team that made the playoffs twice in the last two years. He was effective in an limited role. He will be effective in a limited role here also. Reinhart is being tasked to do what he is best at, although inexperienced at in the NHL. Heavy repetition at playing to his best skills. I expect rapid improvement. Davidson will sub in if either struggles too much. 3 guys, two jobs. None of these guys are being tasked to be dynamic D.
    **************************************************************************************
    You can’t hide a 3rd pairing…..especially on the road. Let’s say 16 minutes a night…

    The Blues 3rd line features Fabbri – Lehtera – and Schwartz…..

    The first game will be a really good first test !

  38. BrazilianOil says:

    Hunter, put me down with 93

  39. Tapdog says:

    Hunter, please book me for 85
    Thx

  40. HeatTreaterJoe says:

    I know that Gryba was a #5 on a playoff-bound Ottawa team, but… Ference was a #4 on a recent Stanley Cup champion team!

  41. oliveoilers says:

    Woodguy: I think the bill of goods was MacT telling Eakins something like:

    “Don’t worry about wins/losses, just get them playing NHL hockey. You’ve got lots of time”

    I was never sure who was selling what to whom.

    A wise man once said the perfect deal is when both sides come away feeling cheated.

    Sounds like this was the most epically bad horse trade in history. (Got my hyperbole on, baby.)

  42. Rube Foster says:

    LT,

    I know what you meant… you and your damn logic!

    But given that I’m enjoying my morning coffee sitting pool side, basking in the desert sun in Arizona today. It’s easier for me to say what if Jultz doesn’t play 500 minutes more than next Oiler D-man this year?
    What if Jultz’s 2015 preseason was not a mirage?
    What if McLellan can be the Dman whisperer he was in San Jose. Didn’t we all see a noticeable bump in Jultz’s play when Nelson replaced Eakins last year? Could there be something to that? Why can’t we have nice things? Correction why couldn’t our nice “McDavid” thing help be a catalyst for developing other nice things!

    LT, remember the lesson of Larry Parrish. He looked horrible for a few years after a promising start for the Expos. I swear he led the league in catching his batting helmet as it tumbled from his head huge whiff after huge whiff. With a bit if patience and development, Parrish turned himself into an All Star.

    Lets just hope that after dedicating some painful years of development, Jultz doesn’t hit the bulk of his HR’s in Texas:)

    Then again, maybe I’m drunk on sunshine and 30C weather!

  43. Ducey says:

    HeatTreaterJoe:
    I know that Gryba was a #5 on a playoff-bound Ottawa team, but… Ference was a #4 on a recent Stanley Cup champion team!

    Boston won the Cup 5 seasons ago. Ference was 31 and is now 36.

    Gryba played for Ottawa, who had 99 pts and made the playoffs last season. He is 27.

  44. JDï™ says:

    The Blues must be worried about facing the center depth that the Oilers possess – just signed Gomez to a two-way deal.

  45. vinotintazo says:

    HeatTreaterJoe,

    Yeah but Gryba is not 32 Years Old.

    He wont get better, but I doubt he’ll get worse this year.

    I’d be suprised if we keep him for next year, Nurse will take his spot.

  46. oliveoilers says:

    JDï™:
    The Blues must be worried about facing the center depth that the Oilers possess – just signed Gomez to a two-way deal.

    Check and mate.

    Now king me!

  47. vinotintazo says:

    btw i’m not a big fan of Gryba, but we’re talking about a 3rd pairing blue. he’ll play 14-16 min a night, against bottom comp ( I hope)

  48. SwedishPoster says:

    I’m usually very cautious with my expectations going in to a season and I’m happy with the team just looking decent but with Todd having this team learning their first real lesson in basic NHL level hockey it’s only logical for the team to get 101 points.

    So Hunter put me down for 101.

  49. JDï™ says:

    Ryan Rishaug Verified account
    ‏@TSNRyanRishaug

    Expecting Chiarelli and McLellan to address media regarding team captaincy shortly.

  50. Магия 10 says:

    JDï™:
    Ryan Rishaug Verified account
    ‏@TSNRyanRishaug

    Expecting Chiarelli and McLellan to address media regarding team captaincy shortly.

    yesterday tmac said one or both of them would speak to that today or tomorrow. i’d guess no c to start the year.

  51. vinotintazo says:

    JDï™,

    finally

  52. JDï™ says:

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 2m2 minutes ago

    The #Oilers have named four alternate captains: Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins & Andrew Ference.

  53. wheatnoil says:

    The #Oilers have named four alternate captains: Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins & Andrew Ference. pic.twitter.com/78zOTG2aIY— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) October 7, 2015

    Seems reasonable. No need to embarrass Ference by not including him in the mix. He likely gets an “A” for the games he plays. The rest go to the core that are entering their prime.

    Though Lander would be a good option. Same with Klefbom, but maybe I just like Swedes.

    Also, none of this really matters. This decision basically takes a mildly distracting issue and turns it into a non-issue.

  54. oliveoilers says:

    JDï™:
    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 2m2 minutes ago

    The #Oilers have named four alternate captains: Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins & Andrew Ference.

    All your alternate captains are belong to us!

  55. wheatnoil says:

    Hendricks gets an “A” while Eberle is injured.

  56. wheatnoil says:

    Looks like our old friend Richard Bachman gets called up for the Canucks as Markstrom goes down with an injury.

    On one hand, I like Bachman and hope he does well.

    On the other hand, oh Canucks… I will enjoy watching them burn this year. Especially due to self-inflicted wounds! They had Loungo and Schneider. Now they have an aged Miller and Bachman.

  57. Soup Fascist says:

    böök¡je: Those of you who don’t know what the turkey quote is about need to watch thishttps://m.youtube.com/watch?v=lf3mgmEdfwg

    Two indisputable facts:

    1. Connor McDavid should be worth the price of admission on many nights.
    2. Bailey Quarters was much hotter than Jennifer Marlowe

  58. bendelson says:

    Soup Fascist: Bailey Quarters was much hotter than Jennifer Marlowe

    And yet I don’t know of a single kid that had a Jan Smithers poster on their bedroom wall…

    LT: I hear your point about Schultz (he’s been OK) and Sekera. One is likely to disappoint Oilers fans this season and I doubt it’s ‘Lubo-lite’.

  59. LadiesloveSmid says:

    No captain this year?

    Maybe Lander emerges as a legitimate candidate, think Nurse will be a good one down the road

  60. HeatTreaterJoe says:

    Ducey,

    Ducey and vinotintazo: Both fair points. But Ference was a #4 D-man also on the 2013 Stanley Cup finalist Boston Bruins (agreed, the cup was a few years earlier).

    I thought everyone was in agreement that Ference should have been a capable 2nd pairing defenseman at the time of the signing, but lordy, that never happened.

    EDIT: I’m really not intending on dumping on Gryba… I’m trying to explain why (as an Oilers fan) I am inherently suspicious / doubtful of Gryba.

  61. Soup Fascist says:

    bendelson: And yet I don’t know of a single kid that had a Jan Smithers poster on their bedroom wall…>

    ahhh … you are probably one of those Ginger > Mary Ann kooks. LOL.

  62. Dicky94 says:

    LadiesloveSmid,

    It’s a good move having no captain this year. Sets up for Connor to wear the C next year after he dominates the league in his rookie season. It will be his team.

  63. Soup Fascist says:

    LadiesloveSmid: No captain this year? Maybe Lander emerges as a legitimate candidate, think Nurse will be a good one down the road

    If CMD is not captain of this team in two years, I would be SHOCKED. You have to think that is the end game to this multiple “A” caper, no?

  64. zatch says:

    HeatTreaterJoe,

    Everyone I knew thought 1 year of that, followed by steep decline, and likely the last two years of the deal being horrifically bad.

    It was worse than that in the end.

  65. John Chambers says:

    Frank Sevarelli considers Montreal and Calgary to be Canada’s only sure bets to make the playoffs. Same with TSN’s concensus that Calgary lands 3rd in the Pacific, while Edm and Van finish 5th and 6th respectively.

    The Calgary love is kind of ridiculous. While their magical run was enjoyable, they’re dependent on a lot of inexperienced players and goalies who played above career averages.

    They plummet back to earth this season – surprised nobody in the mainstream media is calling it.

  66. bendelson says:

    Soup Fascist: ahhh … you are probably one of those Ginger > Mary Ann kooks. LOL.

    Well, I did marry a redhead…

    In truth, I too was on the Bailey and Mary Ann side of things back in the early 80’s.
    It doesn’t change the fact the Loni Anderson had a popular bathing suit poster (my older brother owned it – you know the one) and Jan Smithers did not (unless she did).

  67. RexLibris says:

    Courtesy the Globe and Mail:

    2. Calgary Flames

    Last season: 45-30-7, 97 points, third in Pacific, lost in division final to Anaheim

    Who’s gone: D Raphael Diaz

    Who’s new: D Dougie Hamilton, F Michael Frolik

    Outlook: A healthy Mark Giordano, even with T.J. Brodie out early, plus Hamilton immediately makes Calgary better. Coach of the year Bob Hartley got so much out of the young Flames last season, and he’ll do even more with bigger expectations.

    Right, let’s just ignore the previous two seasons under Hartley because that fits our narrative and we’re too lazy to look much past our first impressions.

  68. oliveoilers says:

    RexLibris:
    Courtesy the Globe and Mail:

    Right, let’s just ignore the previous two seasons under Hartley because that fits our narrative and we’re too lazy to look much past our first impressions.

    Eichel for Calder!

  69. godot10 says:

    John Chambers:
    Frank Sevarelli considers Montreal and Calgary to be Canada’s only sure bets to make the playoffs. Same with TSN’s concensus that Calgary lands 3rd in the Pacific, while Edm and Van finish 5th and 6th respectively.

    The Calgary love is kind of ridiculous. While their magical run was enjoyable, they’re dependent on a lot of inexperienced players and goalies who played above career averages.

    They plummet back to earth this season – surprised nobody in the mainstream media is calling it.

    They are adding Bennett, Frolik, and Hamilton. And Giordano is healthy. That is a a lot of real hockey players to take on the gravity of mean reversion of PDO.

  70. Soup Fascist says:

    bendelson: Well, I did marry a redhead…

    In truth, I too was on the Bailey and Mary Ann side of things back in the early 80’s.
    It doesn’t change the fact the Loni Anderson had a popular bathing suit poster (my older brother owned it – you know the one) and Jan Smithers did not (unless she did).

    Ha.Admittedly, I owned the Loni red one piece poster too. There should have been a law against 13 year old boys owning those or the Farrah poster where she …. Ummm …… Raised a couple of good points. I was not master of my domain.

  71. maudite says:

    Hunter,
    IN case I got on that thread late:
    30 wins
    36 losses
    7 ot wins
    9 ot losses

    83 points

  72. Doug McLachlan says:

    hunter1909: Hunter1909’s Official(tm) 2015-16 Oilers’s Season Death or Glory Contest: Prizes for the winner(s).Predict the 2015-16 final points total for the Oilers. Contest open until the puck drops Thursday.

    My Optimism/Pessimism guage is really out of whack right now but I’ll go 90 pts.

    28pt jump up the standings, a point ahead of the Flames, but alas still shy of the post-season.

  73. russ99 says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.

    There’s one issue with using the waiver wire: you use it for players you want to keep on the roster all year otherwise to better prepare to lose the same player (and throw away the waiver fee) or lose another player in his stead the next time you need to make a move.

    1. I don’t see Corrado as that kind of player to keep on the roster all year.
    2. We’re hamstrung on the roster anyway having to carry our former captain.
    3. As before, the heavy lifting on D needs to be done next offseason, realistically you’re chasing an additional win or two at best adding Corrado, and it won’t make much of a difference in the final standings.

  74. BlueNoteNorth says:

    Foglino knew when it was time to turn the C over to Gretzky. Class act.

    Even if Ference followed suit, who would it go to? Hall? Maybe. McDavid? Too soon.

    I would have given it to Hendricks. From what I have heard he is good in the room and well liked by the young core.

    Question: iirc isn’t Ference one of a handful of Oilers captains not to be traded while wearing the C?

  75. hunter1909 says:

    maudite,

    NP. Plenty of time to enter. Weeping, and gnashing of teeth AFTER face off on Thursday.

  76. Bag of Pucks says:

    Sometimes we get so focused on what players can’t do that we overlook what they can do.

    The Oilers have not been able to ice a pair of physical, effective box-out defenders that can match up against bigger Fs that are strong on the wall/cycle IN YEARS.

    Gryba and Reinhart can possibly fill that role.

    After an icing call, who would you rather have being forced to stay out for an extended shift on an own zone faceoff?

    If you win the faceoff, you’re probably ok with Schultz back there. If you lose the faceoff, you’re probably going to want Gryba and Reinhart cos playing paddy cakes in front of the net doesn’t deter the Lucic’s and Kesler’s from doing what they do.

    Yes, they may dump it up the wall more than we’d like, but they also are less likely to get caught in one of those endless opposition cycles that leads to 6 shots against and an eventual goal. These big boys will collapse to the slot, establish position and gobble up rebounds. Those are necessary skills for an effective D core!

    As fans, we look at what’s lacking (Jultz lacks physicality, Gryba mobility, Reinhart high end offensive upside, etc.) and this cements our belief that the D is lacking (which it certainly is overall). But coaches like Tmac will look at these players more like certain tools for certain jobs and use accordingly.

    Reinhart and Gryba can be effective if used properly, and a HUGE part of this imo is the Fs coming hard on the backcheck to support and provide viable outlet targets.

  77. John Chambers says:

    godot10,

    I just can’t see Hudler repeating last season’s point totals, or Hiller putting in a Vezina worthy effort.

    My guess is that Calgary will hit a rough patch sometime mid-year and be unable to get the wheels unstuck like they did last year.

    I think they finish with 82-88 points and miss the dance.

  78. Bag of Pucks says:

    Soup Fascist: Ha.Admittedly, I owned the Loni red one piece poster too. There should have been a law against 13 year old boys owning those or the Farrah poster where she …. Ummm …… Raised a couple of good points.I was not master of my domain.

    That poster made it to more ceilings than paint.

  79. Kmart99 says:

    Gryba looked awful by eye in preseason. I know preseason means squat, and Gryba was serviceable last year, but my first impressions have not been good.

    I hope he’s better when it matters.

  80. Pouzar says:

    Anyone have that starting D-Corps form a year ago?
    We have a Stanley Cup caliber D now relative to that mess. Sweet Mary…….

  81. stevezie says:

    oliveoilers: Happy Hyperbole Day to you too!

    Perhaps i don’t understand the term. How is this hyperbole?

  82. kinger_OIL says:

    – Having no C is so 2015: they should also be handing out participation trophies to all players on the team based on them having fun, trying hard and listening.

    – It is a tell though that no coaching staff over the years has given the C to Hall: which is the convention in NHL: the majority of C’s happen to be the best player on their team.

    – But who cares: move on, won’t make or break them

  83. Spoils says:

    Here’s an idea for 2016:

    Hall – McDavid – Eberle
    Pouliot – Nugent Hopkins – Purcell
    Slepyshev – Draisaitl – Yakupov
    Lander – Letestu – Korpikoski

    Klefbom – Schutlz
    Sekera- Fayne
    Nurse – Reinhart
    Ference

    Talbot
    Nilson

  84. Death By Misadventure says:

    hunter1909,

    Hunter, put me down for 78 points. I’m optimistic of an improved year but one or two injuries burn the good rig Oil well short of the playoffs.

  85. admiralmark says:

    Question for all the legal eagles out there. And sorry if its already been covered. But. Hypothetically speaking say the Oilers insist on Nikitin reporting to Bakersfield to fullfill his contractual obligations. And say Nikitin knows that Omsk is willing to sign him for lets say $3 Mill x 3 years. Isn’t it a) feasible that under those circumstances he might decide to bolt and breach his contracts? and b) Would this take the Oilers off the hook in terms of the real money but also the Cap Hit?

    Some people will say oh he would never walk away from 4.5 Mill. But that wouldn’t be the whole picture here. If $9 mill is waiting back home with a far lower cost of living + Family. Maybe he would think a little pay cut is preferable with longer term, home, family etc? I dont think its too far fetched. But my real question is would the Oilers be off the hook in terms of Cap space?

  86. Woodguy says:

    I’m playing around with different ways to rate/look at Dmen.

    Think that most QC metrics are pretty weak.

    My favorite is BTN’s RelCor QC.

    It ranks your opponents based on their Relative Corsi, which is a reasonable way to separate wheat from chaff, but far from perfect.

    That beings said, I was looking at the teams/players who’s “tough minute” Dmen (sorted via RelCorQC) also had positive RelCor.

    Here’s the list:

    P.K.SUBBAN
    MARKGIORDANO
    DOUGIEHAMILTON
    KRISTOPHERLETANG
    OLIVEREKMAN-LARSSON
    JUSTINFAULK
    ANTONSTRALMAN
    JOHNNYBOYCHUK
    ALEXANDEREDLER
    MARCMETHOT
    ERIKJOHNSON
    ANDREIMARKOV
    CHRISTANEV
    ANDREJSEKERA
    JAKEMUZZIN
    ZDENOCHARA
    JOHNKLINGBERG
    ZBYNEKMICHALEK
    ALEXGOLIGOSKI
    T.J.BRODIE
    MARCOSCANDELLA
    MARC-EDOUARDVLASIC
    JACOBTROUBA
    DREWDOUGHTY
    DANHAMHUIS
    MATTNISKANEN
    RYANSUTER
    HAMPUSLINDHOLM
    CALVINDEHAAN
    MATTHEWCARLE
    MARTINMARINCIN
    DANNYDEKEYSER
    ANDYGREENE

    Bloody Falmes have 3 guys on this list, Oilers only have 1 (Sekera)

    Sekera’s number was probably zoomed by Faulk.

    Faulk had a better CF% w/ Hainsey than with Sekera. Similar to Greene (who’s on the list again) zoomed Fayne’s numbers in his last year with NJD.

    Oh look, Marty Marincin shows up.

  87. zatch says:

    Spoils,

    Why would we resign Purcell?

  88. Bag of Pucks says:

    admiralmark:
    Question for all the legal eagles out there. And sorry if its already been covered. But. Hypothetically speaking say the Oilers insist on Nikitin reporting to Bakersfield to fullfill his contractual obligations. And say Nikitin knows that Omsk is willing to sign him for lets say $3 Mill x 3 years. Isn’t it a) feasible that under those circumstances he might decide to bolt and breach his contracts? and b) Would this take the Oilers off the hook in terms of the real money but also the Cap Hit?

    Some people will say oh he would never walk away from 4.5 Mill. But that wouldn’t be the whole picture here. If $9 mill is waiting back home with a far lower cost of living + Family. Maybe he would think a little pay cut is preferable with longer term, home, family etc? I dont think its too far fetched. But my real question is would the Oilers be off the hook in terms of Cap space?

    I would imagine there must be a provision in the CBA that if the player willingly breaches his contract via failure to report for assignment that the cap hit is voided. Don’t think the Preds were on the hook for Radulov’s hit when he bolted.

    Have to say I’m amazed at the number of people who view Russia as an inexpensive place to live. Moscow regularly jockeys with Tokyo as the most expensive city in the world.

  89. oliveoilers says:

    stevezie: Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.

    “Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.”

    By the fact that it is rhetoric that cannot be proven until MacT passes on Corrado to keep Davidson.

    “language designed to have a persuasive or impressive effect on its audience, but often regarded as lacking in sincerity or meaningful content”

    Is but one of many meanings of the word ‘hyperbole’.

  90. delooper says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Have to say I’m amazed at the number of people who view Russia as an inexpensive place to live. Moscow regularly jockeys with Tokyo as the most expensive city in the world.

    But Russia isn’t Moscow. As long as you’re not living in Moscow, Russia is dirt cheap.

  91. zatch says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Good thing the team offering the contract is in Omsk

  92. Woodguy says:

    wheatnoil:
    Looks like our old friend Richard Bachman gets called up for the Canucks as Markstrom goes down with an injury.

    On one hand, I like Bachman and hope he does well.

    On the other hand, oh Canucks… I will enjoy watching them burn this year. Especially due to self-inflicted wounds! They had Loungo and Schneider. Now they have an aged Miller and Bachman.

    Yeah, I giggled when I saw this:

    Vancouver Canucks ‏@VanCanucks 2h2 hours ago

    #Canucks recall Richard Bachman; Jacob Markstrom has sustained a lower body injury

    Miller’s usually good for about 15-20 games before he hits IR.

    The Dys aren’t making the playoffs this year.

  93. zatch says:

    Woodguy,

    Just chirped my coworker/buddy from Maple Ridge. He isn’t shocked (real hockey nerd, homer glasses are to an acceptable level). I said 0-82 was immenent. He said 6-76 was his guess, based on how many times they play Edmonton. Bastard.

  94. dustrock says:

    admiralmark: Question for all the legal eagles out there. And sorry if its already been covered. But. Hypothetically speaking say the Oilers insist on Nikitin reporting to Bakersfield to fullfill his contractual obligations. And say Nikitin knows that Omsk is willing to sign him for lets say $3 Mill x 3 years. Isn’t it a) feasible that under those circumstances he might decide to bolt and breach his contracts? and b) Would this take the Oilers off the hook in terms of the real money but also the Cap Hit?Some people will say oh he would never walk away from 4.5 Mill. But that wouldn’t be the whole picture here. If $9 mill is waiting back home with a far lower cost of living + Family. Maybe he would think a little pay cut is preferable with longer term, home, family etc? I dont think its too far fetched. But my real question is would the Oilers be off the hook in terms of Cap space?

    Well the CBA is a little wonky. One would think the point of having a cap hit still count against a team’s cap is that the player is still technically available to play full-time on the roster (whereas with LITR, that’s not the case), if the team chooses to bring him up from Bakersfield.

    Therefore, the contract still counts. If he is going to the KHL and abandoning the terms of his own employment contract, hard to see the rationale that the cap hit would still count – you don’t have an asset to employ.

  95. JDï™ says:

    Speaking of the CBA and getting out from under bad contracts:

    http://www.tsn.ca/kings-richards-working-on-settlement-1.373302

  96. Bag of Pucks says:

    delooper: But Russia isn’t Moscow.As long as you’re not living in Moscow, Russia is dirt cheap.

    Interesting. I would’ve thought the double whammy of collapsing ruble and spiraling inflation would’ve changed that. Appears the ‘inflation’ still has a ways to go to hit nominal levels comparatively speaking.

  97. spoiler says:

    With regards to the important issues of the day, Jan Smithers and Loni Anderson, I was fully in the Bailey quarter as a kid.

    While the red one-piece was probably the more common poster of Loni, the one I remember impacting my teenaged hypothalamus was the white bikini poster where it looks like she’s holding her tummy in.

    There were posters of Jan… I remember seeing one baby-sitting at a young age, probably 14, and the guy I was baby-sitting for had one, which floored me because I had never seen one before. Her posters were always sweaters and shirts n skirts, though, never bathing suits.

    But I do recall she had a hot look in a print ad back in the day, so I googled it to refresh my memory, and hot damn is it refreshing…

  98. RexLibris says:

    oliveoilers: Eichel for Calder!

    Yeah, because he’s playing alongside Moulson.

    On a team that one year ago posted the worst possession metrics since we’ve been recording them.

    Poor McDavid, playing for an experienced and successful coach on a team packed with talent behind a good young center.

    I still don’t think McDavid wins the Calder, but that has more to do with my very jaded view of the PHWA and media bias than anything in his actual performance.

  99. Woogie63 says:

    Hunter

    Put me down for 95 points, which will be 6th in the conference and IN the play-offs.

    For tiebreaker points, PC trades one of 4 1OV and a good prospect to get “that” dman before Christmas!

    No way Pete misses the play-off without doing something big / interesting.

  100. bendelson says:

    spoiler,

    Good to see you know what is and what is not important around here…

    A poster of Jan in a nice sweater and comfortable slacks? Oh my!

  101. Lowetide says:

    Two things: Jan Smithers was drop dead fabulous
    http://www.mademan.com/chickipedia/jan-smithers/photosgallery/Smithers_jan_nw_inside_263/

    Second, it’s about the girl. Smithers is the girl who would help you improve the script, find a way to make your voice on the commercial sound exceptional, and then go out for pizza and beer, happy to do so.

    In that time, Loni Anderson wouldn’t be ready to go to the opera.

  102. jm363561 says:

    hunter1909,

    77 pour moi. Depressing but there you go. I had higher expectations for Gryba than he has shown so far, and thought he and Reinhart would be a good pair.

  103. Curcro says:

    dustrock,

    Radulov (Easy Love) according to my auto correct is from a different era. He was signed 5 days prior to the NHL IIHF KHL agreement about honouring player contracts. He also was from the Pre-Wade Redden rule of being able to bury contracts not on your playing roster.

    So for Nikitin to bolt the Oilers have to agree and further his cap hit will remain. If it becomes a loop hole you will find quite a number of NHLers in Russia very quickly.

  104. jm363561 says:

    knighttown,

    Very, very interesting point.

  105. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide:
    Two things: Jan Smithers was drop dead fabulous
    http://www.mademan.com/chickipedia/jan-smithers/photosgallery/Smithers_jan_nw_inside_263/

    Second, it’s about the girl. Smithers is the girl who would help you improve the script, find a way to make your voice on the commercial sound exceptional, and then go out for pizza and beer, happy to do so.

    In that time, Loni Anderson wouldn’t be ready to go to the opera.

    Seconded.

    Bailey was the one.

    I recall the Mary Anne v Ginger arguments and it was the same.

    Mary Anne.

    My heaven that woman was beautiful.

    That professor was an absolute idiot. He should’ve spent his time trying to find a way to make it so the two of them were the only ones LEFT on the island.

  106. Soup Fascist says:

    Lowetide: Two things: Jan Smithers was drop dead fabuloushttp://www.mademan.com/chickipedia/jan-smithers/photosgallery/Smithers_jan_nw_inside_263/Second, it’s about the girl. Smithers is the girl who would help you improve the script, find a way to make your voice on the commercial sound exceptional, and then go out for pizza and beer, happy to do so. In that time, Loni Anderson wouldn’t be ready to go to the opera.

    …. and don’t forget the glasses. It’s all about the hot chick behind the librarian’s glasses.

    Not to put you on the spot, but It sounds like there may have been a “Bailey Quarters” or two in your early radio days, LT!

  107. RexLibris says:

    So what are the hopes for us Oiler fans in the Van/Cgy game tonight?

    Another embarrassing brawl that highlights the ethical iniquities of our two most hated rivals?

    Vancouver win?

    Calgary win?

    Both teams get lost on the way to the rink and forfeit the game?

  108. AZOIL says:

    hunter1909,

    Hunter you got me for 90 right?

  109. RexLibris says:

    Elliotte Friedman ‏@FriedgeHNIC 2m2 minutes ago

    Couple of quick notes: hearing Raffi Torres will not appeal his 41-game suspension, smartly accepting his penalty…

  110. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Yes! Called the no captains and just alternates thing! That makes me about 1 for 1 million on predictions!

    Haha

  111. RexLibris says:

    Elliotte Friedman ‏@FriedgeHNIC 3m3 minutes ago

    And, as @TSNBobMcKenzie reported, LA working towards some kind of reduced buyout with Mike Richards. Not sure of details, but both trying.

  112. rickithebear says:

    oliveoilers: “Passing on Corrado to keep Davidson is exactly the kind of move people around here would have blasted MacT for.”

    By the fact that it is rhetoric that cannot be proven until MacT passes on Corrado to keep Davidson.

    “language designed to have a persuasive or impressive effect on its audience, but often regarded as lacking in sincerity or meaningful content”

    Is but one of many meanings of the word ‘hyperbole’.

    You are confusing Hyperbole with obseravtion.

    The hyperbole is how MacT wrecked the team.

  113. RexLibris says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    Yes! Called the no captains and just alternates thing! That makes me about 1 for 1 million on predictions!

    Haha

    I’d expected Hendricks to be in there, but I suspect he’s a “lead from within” kind of guy.

    If, in four years, the Oilers have traded away one of Eberle or Hall, I could see the captaincy (including As) include Hall (if retained), Nugent-Hopkins, McDavid, Lander and Nurse, for example.

    One will be wear the C (likely becomes a decision between Hall and McDavid, although for me it would be between McDavid and Nugent-Hopkins, with Lander and Nurse as alternates.

    Lots of personalities on this team, and not necessarily in a bad way.

  114. rickithebear says:

    RexLibris:
    Elliotte Friedman ‏@FriedgeHNIC 3m3 minutes ago

    And, as @TSNBobMcKenzie reported, LA working towards some kind of reduced buyout with Mike Richards. Not sure of details, but both trying.

    Good newsa for us!

  115. Pouzar says:

    So does Ference draw in tomorrow night?

  116. oliveoilers says:

    rickithebear: You are confusing Hyperbole with obseravtion.

    The hyperbole is how MacT wreckedthe team.

    LOL, BURN!

  117. dustrock says:

    Curcro: dustrock, Radulov (Easy Love) according to my auto correct is from a different era. He was signed 5 days prior to the NHL IIHF KHL agreement about honouring player contracts. He also was from the Pre-Wade Redden rule of being able to bury contracts not on your playing roster. So for Nikitin to bolt the Oilers have to agree and further his cap hit will remain. If it becomes a loop hole you will find quite a number of NHLers in Russia very quickly.

    Right, I think the idea was, if the Oilers do not agree, and he bolts. What then?

  118. Soup Fascist says:

    RexLibris: So what are the hopes for us Oiler fans in the Van/Cgy game tonight?Another embarrassing brawl that highlights the ethical iniquities of our two most hated rivals?Vancouver win?Calgary win?Both teams get lost on the way to the rink and forfeit the game?

    I suppose it would be bad form to suggest a tectonic event of such magnitude that it led to the demise of both teams playing in Rogers Arena by being plunged into the Pacific Ocean and – somewhat ironically – eaten by the very Orcas that once adorned one of the many, many ugly Canucks jerseys?

    Yes, probably bad form. I will settle for a non-three-point finish.

  119. Gerta Rauss says:

    dustrock: Right, I think the idea was, if the Oilers do not agree, and he bolts.What then?

    As far as I know, Nikitin would be in breach of his contract, and the contract would be null and void.

    I hope this happens and we get to find out.

    I don’t care where Nikitin plays, as long as he takes his cap hit with him, and Chia has that amount available to him to bolster the roster

  120. vinotintazo says:

    Pouzar:
    So does Ference draw in tomorrow night?

    I hope not.

  121. khildahl says:

    RexLibris,

    It comes down to Miller, I think. What’s the over/under on number of periods played before his groin leaves the rink without him?

  122. blainer says:

    Pouzar:
    So does Ference draw in tomorrow night?

    Tmac is on the record as saying he will ice the team that gives him the best chance to win.. so the answer is absolutely NOT.. unless he tells lies..

  123. Hiratij says:

    Hunter, can you put me down for 103 points, please?

  124. AsiaOil says:

    Niki’s agent is just trying to match up the Oilers and Omsk – doing his job – it saves Batman a few rubles if that’s important to him. Maybe Batman doesn’t care. But Niki is not “bolting” and walking away from $4.5 million – give you head a shake – he will happily ply his trade in either the AHL or NHL this season.

    On the other hand – I think we should explore signing this guy to replace Eberle while injured – under the radar – but 7 goals in one game is impressive 🙂

    http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/10/putin-scored-seven-goals-in-sochi.html

  125. Gerta Rauss says:

    AsiaOil: But Niki is not “bolting” and walking away from $4.5 million – give you head a shake –

    I believe the suggestion was Niki has a contract waiting for him in Russia- he might want to play in Russia instead of Bakersfied

  126. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    RexLibris,

    McDavid’s team as soon as he is ready. They may do it next summer, but maybe even the one after. McDavid Captain, Hall, Ebs, Nuge As.

    Agree Lander should get an A if Hall or Eberle get traded in the future.

  127. Soup Fascist says:

    Asia Oil,

    On the other hand – I think we should explore signing this guy to replace Eberle while injured – under the radar – but 7 goals in one game is impressive http://fortruss.blogspot.com/2015/10/putin-scored-seven-goals-in-sochi.html

    We could then send Gazdic to the farm – this guy IS LITTERALLY a nuclear detternt.

  128. McSorley33 says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Yes, they may dump it up the wall more than we’d like, but they also are less likely to get caught in one of those endless opposition cycles that leads to 6 shots against and an eventual goal. These big boys will collapse to the slot, establish position and gobble up rebounds. Those are necessary skills for an effective D core!
    As fans, we look at what’s lacking (Jultz lacks physicality, Gryba mobility, Reinhart high end offensive upside, etc.) and this cements our belief that the D is lacking (which it certainly is overall). But coaches like Tmac will look at these players more like certain tools for certain jobs and use accordingly.
    Reinhart and Gryba can be effective if used properly, and a HUGE part of this imo is the Fs coming hard on the backcheck to support and provide viable outlet targets.

    *********************************************************************************************
    Good points….and to be fair – the 4th line of Ott – Brodziak and Reaves screams out for our 3rd pairing…..just not sure Hitch will oblige with that match up.

    We hope. We wait.

  129. Snowman says:

    Hiratij:
    Hunter, can you put me down for 103 points, please?

    Nice this is the kind of Kool-Aid drinking-all things go right-can’t stop Mcdavid kind of attitude I like to see.

  130. Marc says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    RexLibris,

    McDavid’s team as soon as he is ready. They may do it next summer, but maybe even the one after. McDavid Captain, Hall, Ebs, Nuge As.

    Agree Lander should get an A if Hall or Eberle get traded in the future.

    I love Lander but I very much doubt he’s still on the team at that stage.

    The lesson of Chicago and Boston is that you cannot pay your good players – your Bickells and Marchands – market value when they emerge from their value contracts, or it will ultimately cost you some of your elite players.

    You let them go, replace them with value contracts from your system ie. Yakimov and use the money you save to pay your elite core.

    If Lander plays as well over the next two seasons as we hope he will, he’ll be worth $2.5M+ on the open market. The Oilers absolutely cannot pay their fourth best centre that kind of money. Not with McDavid, Drai and Nurse to pay.

  131. SkatinginSand says:

    hunter1909,

    Put me down for 86. It seems to be a significant number for the Oil this year. If I am overly pessimistic, I will be ecstatic!

  132. pocession charge says:

    Woodguy:

    The Dys aren’t making the playoffs this year.

    Excuse my ignorance, but why do you call the Canucks the Dys?

  133. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Marc: I love Lander but I very much doubt he’s still on the team at that stage.

    The lesson of Chicago and Boston is that you cannot pay your good players – your Bickells and Marchands – market value when they emerge from their value contracts, or it will ultimately cost you some of your elite players.

    You let them go, replace them with value contracts from your system ie. Yakimov and use the money you save to pay your elite core.

    If Lander plays as well over the next two seasons as we hope he will, he’ll be worth $2.5M+ on the open market. The Oilers absolutely cannot pay their fourth best centre that kind of money. Not with McDavid, Drai and Nurse to pay.

    My point was missed entirely. Eberle or Hall get traded for those reasons. Lander stays cheaper.

    Perhaps Nurse gets an A at some stage as well.

    Anyhow crystal ball only worked this once. Not counting on my being right again any time in the future.

  134. pocession charge says:

    Pouzar:
    So does Ference draw in tomorrow night?

    I’m sure he’ll have plenty of time to work on his drawing in the pressbox.

  135. Магия 10 says:

    pocession charge: Excuse my ignorance, but why do you call the Canucks the Dys?

    Think it goes back to that Bertuzzi-Morrison-Naslund Dynasty that never got past round 2.

    But what fuels it is the Canuck fans that figure they are the most hated franchise in Canada because of their great Presidents’ Trophy dynasty.

  136. RexLibris says:

    For those that are interested in NHLEs:

    Woodguy Retweeted
    Rob Vollman ‏@robvollmanNHL 4h4 hours ago

    Updated Translation Factors:
    .83 KHL
    .57 SHL
    .48 AHL
    .45 NCHC
    .42 NLA
    .40 ECAC, Big-10
    .37 CCHA
    .33 H-East, OHL
    .32 Fin
    .27 QMJHL, WHL

  137. Adam Wu says:

    rickithebear: You are confusing Hyperbole with obseravtion.

    The hyperbole is how MacT wreckedthe team.

    It is indeed gross hyperbole to claim that MacT wrecked the team. Compare the roster he inherited with the one left behind. Compare their records. It’s really a wash both ways. MacT didn’t make the team any noticeably worse, which is the definition of “wrecked”. His failure lies in failing to move the needle. Every improvement he made with a smart decision was more or less exactly canceled out by the crater left from one of his mistakes.

    He inherited a trainwreck, enthusiastically went at it with a mallet, and ended up with a trainwreck, fixed in some places, further damaged in others, but functionally equivalent.

  138. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    RexLibris:
    For those that are interested in NHLEs:

    Woodguy Retweeted
    Rob Vollman ‏@robvollmanNHL 4h4 hours ago

    Updated Translation Factors:
    .83 KHL
    .57 SHL
    .48 AHL
    .45 NCHC
    .42 NLA
    .40 ECAC, Big-10
    .37 CCHA
    .33 H-East, OHL
    .32 Fin
    .27 QMJHL, WHL

    Very interesting. Anyone have the old ones handy?

  139. Woodguy says:

    pocession charge: Excuse my ignorance, but why do you call the Canucks the Dys?

    Dennis King-ism

    To celebrate all the Dynasties they’ve had like…….ummmmmmm……..hhmmmmmmm

  140. Woodguy says:

    Marc: I love Lander but I very much doubt he’s still on the team at that stage.

    The lesson of Chicago and Boston is that you cannot pay your good players – your Bickells and Marchands – market value when they emerge from their value contracts, or it will ultimately cost you some of your elite players.

    You let them go, replace them with value contracts from your system ie. Yakimov and use the money you save to pay your elite core.

    If Lander plays as well over the next two seasons as we hope he will, he’ll be worth $2.5M+ on the open market. The Oilers absolutely cannot pay their fourth best centre that kind of money. Not with McDavid, Drai and Nurse to pay.

    By the time Drai and Nurse are getting big money, Eberle and Hall are probably off the books.

    There are 4 years of Eberle left and 5 years of Hall.

    One of them might get traded for a Dman.

    Paying McD, RNH, Drai, and then Lander ~2.5 is certainly doable.

    You just don’t pay your wingers $6MM/yr

  141. RexLibris says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Very interesting.Anyone have the old ones handy?

    OHL was about the same. WHL and QMJHL were, iirc, at an even .3.

    The KHL and SHL ones look new to my eye, but I’ve never really paid a lot of attention to overseas comps as most of my writing centers around the draft/prospects.

  142. Woodguy says:

    Nurse might not bring enough offense to get a huge paycheck, more like a Klefbom sized one.

  143. oilswell says:

    Магия 10: Think it goes back to that Bertuzzi-Morrison-Naslund Dynasty that never got past round 2.

    But what fuels it is the Canuck fans that figure they are the most hated franchise in Canada because of their great Presidents’ Trophy dynasty.

    Right. Dennis King started calling them that and it caught on a little.

  144. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: Dennis King-ism

    To celebrate all the Dynasties they’ve had like…….ummmmmmm……..hhmmmmmmm

    Don’t forget the Vancouver MIllionaires!

    Canucks bought that team’s rights so they can technically lay claim to two Stanley Cups.

    Which is better than Calgary’s one, if you ignore how pathetic it is to try to celebrate championships won by another team a century ago.

    What an organization.

  145. Really? says:

    RexLibris: One will be wear the C (likely becomes a decision between Hall and McDavid, although for me it would be between McDavid and Nugent-Hopkins, with Lander and Nurse as alternates

    I totally agree with the men you have indicated as the potential leadership cadre for the Oilers. Hall, while a tremendous talent appears too mercurial to be effective in key situations and Eberle is a good foot soldier. Everything we have read or heard about RNH, Lander and Nurse suggests they are both focused and under control to a much larger degree.

    The only real question mark may be McDavid. He undoubtedly has incredible hockey talent but that does not automatically translate to great leadership skills. Far too early to judge that aspect of his game.

  146. RexLibris says:

    oilswell: Right. Dennis King started calling them that and it caught on a little.

    I think if the mic weren’t on we’d have coined a few different names for the Canucks on his account.

  147. RexLibris says:

    Really?: I totally agree with the men you have indicated as the potential leadership cadre for the Oilers. Hall, while a tremendous talent appears too mercurial to be effective in key situations and Eberle is a good foot soldier. Everything we have read or heard about RNH, Lander and Nurse suggests they are both focused and under control to a much larger degree.

    The only real question mark may be McDavid. He undoubtedly has incredible hockey talent but that does not automatically translate to great leadership skills. Far too early to judge that aspect of his game.

    I think McDavid is a captain in waiting.

    Hall and Nugent-Hopkins are like Messier and Gretzky in their on-ice attitudes. One, as you say, mercurial and passionate, the other more reserved and focused.

    Both are strengths that can be drawn upon relative to the occasion.

    But everything I have seen, read and observed about McDavid says Captain.

    To be honest, in another year, we may be speaking of Leon Draisaitl as being an alternate-capable individual.

    As I said, there are lots of leaders in this group, and provided they come together around McDavid and the coach, I think this team may have some in-the-room assets they’ve not enjoyed in a very, very long time.

  148. Marc says:

    Woodguy: By the time Drai and Nurse are getting big money, Eberle and Hall are probably off the books.

    There are 4 years of Eberle left and 5 years of Hall.

    One of them might get traded for a Dman.

    Paying McD, RNH, Drai, and then Lander ~2.5 is certainly doable.

    You just don’t pay your wingers $6MM/yr

    Elite young players are getting paid after their ELC. Hall,Eberle, RNH and Klef all did. Elsewhere in the league you have Saad, Hamilton, Klingberg etc.

    Do you really think a GM who signed Klefbom to a 7 year deal after less than 80 NHL games is going sign Drai and Nurse, who have even higher ceilings, to bridge deals?

    Which means they’ll get paid years before Hall and Eberle are off the books. Which means no $2.5M fourth line centre (which I would argue is a bad idea in any event).

    For the next decade or so (unless Chia learned nothing in Boston) we’re going to have to get used to watching good players leave as soon as they come off their value contracts,so that we can pay all our great players.

    There are worse problems to have…

  149. speeds says:

    Marc,

    Who knows what Chia will do, but seems more sensible to me to not re-sign Hendricks/Korpikoski/Letestu and fill their spots with young and/or cheap players while retaining Lander, assuming there’s cap room for it. Certainly possible that at some point you can’t afford to even do that.

  150. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris:
    For those that are interested in NHLEs:

    Woodguy Retweeted
    Rob Vollman ‏@robvollmanNHL 4h4 hours ago

    Updated Translation Factors:
    .83 KHL
    .57 SHL
    .48 AHL
    .45 NCHC
    .42 NLA
    .40 ECAC, Big-10
    .37 CCHA
    .33 H-East, OHL
    .32 Fin
    .27 QMJHL, WHL

    The gap between the OHL and Q seems to be staying. The OHL is the best junior league on the planet.

  151. Soup Fascist says:

    Lowetide: The gap between the OHL and Q seems to be staying. The OHL is the best junior league on the planet.

    Have the WHL and QMJHL always been on the same level? Seems a lot harder to score in the WHL than the Q.

  152. Sugar Reijo says:

    Love the turkey quote LT.

    Suspect the Oilers are biding their time before giving Connor the captaincy as an under-20 y/o a la Landeskog, Crosby and Toews.

    And ceiling posters be damned, imho Bailey and Mary Anne were both by far the hottest option on their respective show.

  153. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: The gap between the OHL and Q seems to be staying. The OHL is the best junior league on the planet.

    And for a short time the Oilers were one of the best junior teams in the NHL.

  154. RexLibris says:

    I’ve always imagined that LT in that era was an amalgam of Johnny Fever, Andy, and (to be perfectly honest) a touch of Herb Tarlek (if only for the impeccable fashion taste).

  155. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris:
    I’ve always imagined that LT in that era was an amalgam of Johnny Fever, Andy, and (to be perfectly honest) a touch of Herb Tarlek (if only for the impeccable fashion taste).

    One of the reasons I got into radio was that show. It seemed so cool and the industry remains a blast. I have NEVER been accused of being a GQ-type. 🙂

  156. khildahl says:

    RexLibris:
    I’ve always imagined that LT in that era was an amalgam of Johnny Fever, Andy, and (to be perfectly honest) a touch of Herb Tarlek (if only for the impeccable fashion taste).

    Hmm. I suspect there was some Les Nessman in there because I choose to believe LT pronounces “Chi-Chi Rodriguez” the wrong way (or is it the right way?).

  157. bendelson says:

    When someone mentions WKRP, I think of the turkey drop (obviously) and Les Nessman out in right field. Can you hear the violins?

    …and that ongoing debate around the ladies on the show of course, which turns out, is really no debate at all.

  158. JDï™ says:

    Lowetide: One of the reasons I got into radio was that show.

    Worked in technical way back at a radio station in S’toon. Very different vibe, for sure. The ladies in sales were an interesting bunch, and the sports guy (I think) was a riot.

  159. AsiaOil says:

    Sure I expect he would – but no way he fails to meet his contractual obligations – 4.5 million reasons not to do that. We are stuck with that dead cap space but the owner may want to reduce the budget hurt a bit by letting him play in the motherland. Pretty much a non-issue from a hockey perspective – what’s done is done – and we have to live with the consequences of that crazy contract this year. Ference would be down there with him (or instead of him) without his NMC. Clearly the worst dman of any legitimate hopeful at TC – sadly no redeeming points at all – even the leadership element is tainted by his association with the previous coach/GM.

    Gerta Rauss: I believe the suggestion was Niki has a contract waiting for him in Russia- he might want to play in Russia instead of Bakersfied

  160. Marc says:

    speeds:
    Marc,

    Who knows what Chia will do, but seems more sensible to me to not re-sign Hendricks/Korpikoski/Letestu and fill their spots with young and/or cheap players while retaining Lander, assuming there’s cap room for it.Certainly possible that at some point you can’t afford to even do that.

    In two seasons the oilers will almost certainly still have $32M committed to Hall, RNH,Eberle, Klef,Pou and Sekera.

    Drai and Nurse’s new deals will probably be $8-$10M total and McDavid at max bonuses on the last year of his ELC is close to $4M.

    A starting goalie (whoever it is) will be at least $4M, so we’re already at close to $50M for ten players.

    If Schultz and Yak are still on the team ie. because they’ve established themselves as a top 4 D/top 6 F, they’ll cost at least $8M (given they’re already on $6.5M) and possibly closer to $10M.

    That’s approximately $60M for 6F, 4D and 1D, so $10-$15M for the rest of the team, depending on the cap. And that’s before McDavid’s new deal kicks in.

    There simply won’t be cap space to pay any of the bottom 6 F or 3D much more than $1M. Lander is a good player but I just can’t see any circumstances where it will make sense to pay him what he’s worth that summer given the other contracts on the team and the fact that three of those guys play his position, and project to do so at a much higher level than he can.

  161. Магия 10 says:

    RexLibris: Canucks bought that team’s rights so they can technically lay claim to two Stanley Cups.

    one wag responded. well done! What was your favourite memory of your cup run in 1915?

  162. AsiaOil says:

    Marc,

    Yeah that’s pretty much the case – but I’ll take it as it means the team is successful. The days of overpaid 3rd pair dmen and bottom 6 forwards is drawing to a close in EDM. We need value contracts in those slots which is why keeping Davidson safe from waivers was important. If he shows that he can capably fill a 5-6 role this season I would try sign him to a cheap multi-year one way deal before the end of the season. Then we just keep looking around for and developing more of the same. The 3rd and 4th lines become home for cheap effective vets looking for a home and kids on entry level deals.

    This is also why we should not make any substantial moves for a dman (unless he’s truly elite) before next summer. Sekera and Klef are locked up longterm and look good for the top 4. GR and Nurse are young but are also high picks whose development has tracked really well – risk goes down on them more each year – and I think it’s unlikely more than 1 busts at this point (and probably neither). Then there is Shultz – if he matures into the player everyone hoped for this season – then there is no need to add anyone as improvement happens internally. Of course if a truly elite guy becomes available and it costs some combination of Shultz, Yak, pick or GR (shades of the CFP deal) well you do that deal without a second thought and run – that’s a difference maker and a deal that gets you a Stanley. But you also need to be patient as that type of deal is rarely just sitting there for a GM waiting to take it when he feels like it.

  163. RexLibris says:

    Магия 10: one wag responded. well done! What was your favourite memory of your cup run in 1915?

    Gotta go with the cheerleaders.

    They wore these racy one-piece numbers that REALLY showed the ankles all the way to mid-calf.

    And the roasted peanuts were a thrill. Used to throw the shells onto the ice in front of the visitor’s bench for a laugh.

  164. speeds says:

    Marc,
    AsiaOil,

    If you made me guess now, I’d guess Eberle or Hall gets traded when McDavid get paid, but not necessarily until then/only if he cap is fairly flat/other biggish deals (like maybe a Lucic?) aren’t added.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!
© Copyright - Lowetide.ca