JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU

Nail Yakupov is a favorite for all kinds of reasons. Stories about his generosity and kind heart appear often in local media, and if you live here chances are you have a personal story, or one told to you, about his goodness. Those stories give all of us an extra reason to cheer for him, and I do not know an Oilers fan who cheers against him.

Against that backdrop, the numbers (this year) tell us about an interesting player having a fascinating year:

  • 5×5 points per 60: 1.46 (last year 1.23)
  • 5×4 points per 60: 2.66 (last year 3.55)
  • Corsi for % 5×5: 48.9 (last year 46.3)
  • Corsi for % Rel 5×5: 1.3 (last year -6.0)
  • Shots on goal/percentage: 75/5.3% (last year 191/7.3%)
  • Boxcars: 34GP, 4-10-14 (lasr year 81GP, 14-19-33)

Nail is about even in terms of boxcars compared to last season, and is more efficient at 5×5—McDavid’s help should be considered here. That said, Nail’s 1.46/60 ranks No. 169 (tie) among NHL forwards—making him in fact a 2line scoring winger (3o teams, six forwards, 180 2line players) albeit at the bottom end. Nail may not be the brightest light among No. 1 overall picks this century, but at $2.5 million my post season RE is going to be pretty complimentary about this player. I think his shooting percentage is poor, and he cannot get much done with the current centers not named Connor McDavid, but am uncertain as to why he should be blamed for that—seems to me that question is for the general manager.

NAIL AT 5X5, WITH CENTERS

  • Nail with McDavid: 7 points in 141:23 this season (2.96/60)
  • Nail with RNH: 1 point in 34:40 this season (1.73/60)
  • Nail with Lander: 1 point in 41:16 this season (1.46/60)
  • Nail with Letestu: 0 points in 157:26 this season
  • Nail with Hendricks: 0 points in 59:29 this season
  • Nail with Draisaitl: 0 points in 9:43 this season
  • Source

Nail has performed (offensively) pretty well with all of the capable centers (not much time with Leon). I don’t recall Nail spending a lot of time with Hendricks as his center, but included it here because of this:

I think this is what the kids call a ‘hot mess’ and there are three lines here that look ridiculous. That said, the overwhelming takeaway from this lineup is the following:

Dear Nail Yakupov,

They are just not that into you.

I read here and there about Todd McLellan putting him in a bad spot, but for me it is completely reasonable to play Teddy Purcell and Jordan Eberle ahead of him. Despite the early success Nail enjoyed on McDavid’s line, we all knew (and talked about) the day McDavid and Eberle were healthy together they would play together.

What is the solution for Nail Yakupov as an Edmonton Oiler? Peter Chiarelli and Todd McLellan have had the year (pretty much) with him and I think we have our answer. Teddy Purcell is on his way out of town in minutes, and if Nail doesn’t see the 2line at that time, I’ll get the ‘sail on’ post ready and we can have a collective cry (or the male version, which is basically a night of long faces) over Nail being sent away.

I love this kid. This isn’t his town.

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166 Responses to "JUST NOT THAT INTO YOU"

  1. Mr DeBakey says:

    Yakupov-Hendricks-Korpikoski

    My fourth line for next year has none of those names on it
    Instead
    Iiro Pakarinen — Mark Letestu — Josh Winquist

    Hopefully, Yakupov, if moved, is part of a package to aid an area of need.
    The other two won’t bring back more than picks.
    [And free up Cap space for the Yak return.]

  2. misfit says:

    Even when people were saying Leon wasn’t ready last year and were calling for him to be sent back to junior, I felt that he and Yakupov had good chemistry and looked good (at least by the misfit eye test) whenever they were on the ice together.

    I really hope they try those two as a pairing again. I get it, Hall-Drai-Purcell were excellent for most of the season, but now that they’re looking to shake things up with that line, Draisaitl-Yakupov seems like a pretty good place to start.

    This would be a whole lot easier to do if Nuge were still with us.

  3. Oil2Oilers says:

    While Drai and Hall are on a time out can we try Lander-Draisaitl-Yakupov? I recall them having a nice pre-season run
    It is better than the hot mess of lines in practice today.

  4. Colieo87 says:

    LT regarding last night. The leafs played better then edmonton. More structure more enthusiasm and effort. The mismanagement of players with this organization over the years haa been appalling. Stoll, petry, Penner, pronger, Souray, dubnyk, Gagner, Schultz. It’s been a a mighty love affair between some and not so for others. Bad drafting, poor gut attitudes on players and when one of them barks back they banish him to the AHL. This team is so deeply troubled, drafted, developed, managed, believes in, utilized wrong. That its going to take twice and then some more to get the balance, depth and system needed to be a well oiled machine like Chicago, L.A, Detroit we all envy so much. And with all that said. Like you mentioned the fans (peasants) as you but it has been gifted by some greater good, power or mystery to watch the next greatest player rise to the occasion in a mad hockey city that has a rich history that the last unexpected great one rose and truly called this… The city of Champs.

  5. hunter1909 says:

    McDavid scores 5 points and it’s hardly registered, not since watching that brace of games (Montreal, NYI ) previously.

    So. Chiarelli fails to address the defence but somehow this means Yakupov gets thrown overboard? No problem, since I really don’t care much lately for the team anyway.

  6. fifthcartel says:

    I agree, they clearly are not a fan of Yakupov and it wouldn’t surprise me if he was even moved at the deadline.

    There’s no much point in keeping him when they play him like a 3rd/4th liner.

    I’d say there’s 0 chance he’s back next season and I’m still thinking the entire RW is new come next season (Purcell/Eberle/Yakupov moved).

  7. lynn says:

    Mr DeBakey:
    Yakupov-Hendricks-Korpikoski

    My fourth line for next year has none of those names on it
    Instead
    Iiro Pakarinen—Mark Letestu—Josh Winquist

    Hopefully, Yakupov, if moved, is part of a package to aid an area of need.
    The other two won’t bring back more than picks.
    [And free up Cap space for the Yak return.]

    Josh Winquist will never be a 4th line NHL player–not big enough, not strong enough.

    Good player, good scorer, at WHL and AHL level, though. Too bad he has been injured for much of the season in Bakersfield.

  8. Gordies Elbow says:

    Well, those look like “show me” lines.

    I had a coach once, who, when things were not going well, would put together “show me” lines. Generally speaking, they consisted of a skill player (not me,) a specialist (not me,) and a bottom line mucker.

    The intent was to give guys opportunities that they wouldn’t have, and to create chemistry. Often, it worked. It spreads out the attack, and come the mid 2nd, those that were able to show coach that they were on that night would have their icetime moved up. Not out to play, and you’re moving to the end of the bench quickly.

    I know that the default atmosphere here is negative, and with the last ten years, lord knows its warranted. That said, McLellan is clearly thinking outside of the box. I hope it works against the Jets.

  9. SwedishPoster says:

    I don’t understand why they keep playing Hendricks at center not only do they get a weak C, they lose a great winger. For all of Landers struggles he’s at very least as good as Hendricks at center, I personally like Lander better, but with the added loss of our best checking winger it’s just a stupid decision imo.
    I don’t get the deployment of Yak either but after last nights lackluster game I can at least understand trying to light a fire under his ass.
    And the old cliche about GMs own guys always getting a lot of rope never fails to deliver, Korpikoski keeps getting chances to play terrible. I guess it’s a pride thing. GMs can’t have their egos hurt.

    These just aren’t good lines, the only one outside McDavids that might work imo is Hall’s line due to him being able to create chances and Kassian’s ability to play with skill, Letestu might kill all momentum though if he stays in his slump.

  10. stephen sheps says:

    This post breaks my heart.

    I absolutely adore Yak and truly think he’s been mishandled from day one. Not his fault.

    LT said it best above but I think we can modify it thusly: ” I think his shooting percentage is poor, and he cannot get much done with the current centers not named Connor McDavid, but am uncertain as to why he should be blamed for that—seems to me that question is for the three consecutive general managers”

    Hall and Eberle got Horcoff.
    To an extent, so did RNH, allowing him to grow into his role on the team.

    Nail has had mostly Sam Gagner (not an NHL C), half a season with Derek Roy (no longer in the NHL) and a collection of 3rd and 4th line plugs. He has not been set up for success. When he plays with good players, he can produce. When he gets a lot of ice time, he gets into a zone and fires more shots on net. He needs that rhythm to thrive, almost like a pocket passing QB – no reps, no rhythm; no protection, no production.

    I’ve been an Oilers fan my entire life, childhood and adult. I have only ever had 2 player jerseys lifetime (close to 35 years). As a young boy I had a sweet Kurri 17. Loved that jersey. Wore it until it fell apart on me, mostly due to outgrowing the thing. He even signed it for me in ’87 when I got my picture taken with him and the Stanley at some random photo event in Callingwood. Wish I still had that thing…

    The other jersey? Nail Yaupov #10. I’ve watched every player I’ve ever really cared about get sold, shipped out for spare parts or simply let walk away. I really don’t want to see Nail get sold for pennies on the dollar. It will break my heart and I will have a hard time forgiving the organization for failing this talented, passionate, hungry-to-learn young man.

  11. delooper says:

    It feels to me as if we kept track (and published) of all these armchair GMs who predict player X Y and Z will be traded by deadline W, we’d have big 0-5% success rates beside their names… and they’d make far less bold predictions.

    I hope Yakupov stays and thrives. I strongly suspect they’ll give him another chance.

  12. SwedishPoster says:

    I don’t get why they won’t return to the Kassian-Lander-Yak combo. They got a very short spell, looked dangerous never to be seen again. They make sense as a line as well.

  13. 719 says:

    Letestu and Hendricks have been really unimpressive at the center positions assigned to them. When will we see Lander back?

    Davidson is looking good, looks like Tambo knew what he was doing when he traded Visnovsky for that 6th round pick all those years ago.

  14. DRFNsuperstar says:

    Listening to media call Edmonton a rebuild I thought to myself “we can’t even be called a rebuild anymore. Just a shitty hockey team, it’s been 10 years”

    PS. Arizona knows how to rebuild. http://www.tsn.ca/tsn-hockey-s-top-50-nhl-affiliated-prospects-1.436669

  15. Mr DeBakey says:

    lynn: Josh Winquist will never be a 4th line NHL player–not big enough, not strong enough.

    Lets try “Good Enough” and leave the Spectorisms for other forums
    He hasn’t hit the ceiling yet, and until he does we’re in his corner

  16. Lowetide says:

    SwedishPoster:
    I don’t get why they won’t return to the Kassian-Lander-Yak combo. They got a very short spell, looked dangerous never to be seen again. They make sense as a line as well.

    Great point.

  17. Connor says:

    IMO Yakupov looks a little bit more wobbly on his skates since coming back.

    Yak’s my favorite but the team comes first. Wait at least until the off-season before assessing.

  18. HenryDrix says:

    Yup, trade Purcell so Yak can get some much needed and way too long coming, opportunities on the top 2 lines. Yak-Drai-Halll could be a great line. At least untl Ebs is traded for a legot #1 D.

  19. AsiaOil says:

    Yeah I’m resigned to a trade.

    I like the kid as a player and young man but the title of this post says it all. They never developed this young man properly and have trashed his value. He will join a small bunch of guys (Dubnyk, Horcoff, Hemsky, Petry) who were treated in bizarre and inappropriate ways. Guys who I all hope show up the org for it’s pettiness and dysfunctionality. Troubling thing is that it’s the new management group acting basically the same way (Marincin also comes to mind) so it seems the old boys still have some sway which is troubling. Thought is was over when Yak was given a proper role after TC but he’s the red-headed step kid again as soon as Eberle came back. Stuffed with Korpse and Hendo at center – good god that’s stupid.

    Just trade him already and I can cheer for him in a town that appreciates him for what he brings rather than always focusing on what he isn’t.

  20. Younger Oil says:

    Yeah even though Lander hasn’t pissed a drop offensively, he’s not so bad that the team should only be using three centers when they have one that can play decent hockey in the press box.

    Seems like a very Eakins-y thing to do.

    I know injuries make it tough, but I’m really not impressed with the way McLellan has been running his lines to be honest.

  21. Lowetide says:

    Anders Nilsson gets the start tonight.

  22. Rod from Viking says:

    Yaks play really has looked disinterested since he came back from that freak injury and looks like he has had enough of Edmonton and visa versa ,It makes you wonder if there is something happening behind the scenes, his agent or family again affecting things.
    Teddy will play a couple good games and then disappear and he hardly ever gets moved down the line up for very long, show casing takes priority I guess.
    Yak has gotten the tough love from McLellan and Eakins and has floundered, got positive reinforcement from Kruger and Nelson and did quite well.
    I hope he gets a fresh start in the NHL or he may even go back and play in the KHL.

  23. Johnny skid says:

    AsiaOil: Just trade him already and I can cheer for him in a town that appreciates him for what he brings rather than always focusing on what he isn’t.

    this is the what i hope happens as well. yak deserves better.

  24. David says:

    I think it should be on the team to put players in position to succeed and I don’t believe the Oilers have ever done this with Yakupov. I believe Lowtide said (apologies if you never said this) something along the lines of the Oilers had to know what Yak was when they drafted him and it would be stupid to try to change him. He’s an offensive player, not a “two way player” (meaning defensive) not a “shut down player”, you have him on to score goals and make plays. If you aren’t going to do this you shouldn’t have drafted him and shouldn’t keep him. Put him with your top guys or ship him out. He’s useless playing with Letestu and Hendricks.

    What people always say is players have to prove themselves. What a bad concept. If Eberle played 12 mins a night with our bottom six guys he wouldn’t produce much and it would be stupid to expect him to produce much. Put him with our top players and he shines. Same principle for Yak. Use him with McDavid/Nuge/Hall/Drai or get rid of him. If you are waiting to see if he’ll accomplish anything apart from them you won’t find it. Just plain silliness.

  25. lynn says:

    Mr DeBakey: Lets try “Good Enough” and leave the Spectorisms for other forums
    He hasn’t hit the ceiling yet, and until he does we’re in his corner

    Glad you are a Josh Winquist fan. I’ve stated that he is a good player. If the Oilers, or another NHL team, sign Josh to an ELC, he will be a step closer to the NHL. He is not a prototype 4th line NHLer. And, no, I’m not a Mark Spector clone.

  26. Pouzar says:

    Ebs the golden child. Yak the red headed step child. Why did I even bother with this thread.

  27. LostBoy says:

    There are strong parallels between the handling of Yakupov and Pääjärvi. Pääjärvi has been treated as a top 6 forward exactly once in his NHL career, when he was a 19 year old rookie, and especially late in the season he got to play a feature role due to injuries. He put up 15 goals and 34 points as a 19 year old. After that he was always, always the odd man out, hardly ever got to play with a decent C on a bona fide scoring line, always cast as an add-on third line winger. And people wonder why he didn’t turn out. STL wasn’t the team he needed to go to.

    Yak has gotten pretty much the same deal, except he’s so one-dimensional that noone is tempted to cast him as a checker, which was Pääjärvi’s wasted fate.

    I love Yak, too. Hope he ends up somewhere in a feature role, where he belongs. I understand that he hasn’t fully earned the trust of a succession of coaches. But that speaks to issues with his handling and development. Maybe it couldn’t have been any other way, given he was a first overall and with Larionov’s antics. But he’s been ill served in Edmonton, and the asset has been allowed to rot and basically bleed out in terms of trade value.

  28. Lowetide says:

    Pouzar:
    Ebs the golden child. Yak the red headed step child. Why did I even bother with this thread.

    I think that frames it a little differently than most are saying. Yakupov has a story to tell, Oilers do not appear to be interesting (although that could change with the trading of Purcell—I have my doubts). Eberle is a more mature, better player. I don’t think there is much to argue there.

  29. Lois Lowe says:

    I have a pet theory that Yak’s treatment, by seemingly all of his coaches, has to do with his inability to learn how to play on the left side of the ice.

    I also don’t buy the argument that he was mishandled in Edmonton. Ever coach he’s had in the NHL deemed him unready for a top 6 role. That’s not an accident.

  30. lynn says:

    lynn: Glad you are a Josh Winquist fan. I’ve stated that he is a good player. If the Oilers, or another NHL team, sign Josh to an ELC, he will be a step closer to the NHL. He is nota prototype 4th line NHLer. And, no, I’m not a Mark Spector clone.

    Josh Winquist will have a long career in Europe, my guess.

  31. Johnny skid says:

    Lowetide: I think that frames it a little differently than most are saying. Yakupov has a story to tell, Oilers do not appear to be interesting (although that could change with the trading of Purcell—I have my doubts). Eberle is a more mature, better player. I don’t think there is much to argue there.

    yak is 3 years younger than eberle is he not? that would explain some of the more mature better player a bit don’t you think?

  32. AsiaOil says:

    No level-headed person could disagree regardless of the differences in style and strengths/weaknesses between the 2 players.

    Lowetide: Eberle is a more mature, better player. I don’t think there is much to argue there.

  33. anonymous says:

    Seems like an old regime move, burying an assets value rather than a pump and dump.

    Yak should have been traded a long time ago. Horses gotta run. Why shouldn’t a number 1 overall expect a little leeway. Kids never played down the lineup in his life.

  34. blainer says:

    Just amazes me the excuses about this player. it’s everybody else’s fault he never succeeded.

    His lack of success has to do with the fact that he was never gonna be an elite player to begin with. I saw this at WJC he played in.. he looked lost to me then and have always felt he was never elite

    At some point a lot of the posters here have to understand that maybe he is just not an NHL player and that he is a bust. Most of that draft year doesn’t look very promising either.

    Yak and Shultz. Put a period and move on.

  35. kinger_OIL says:

    – Oh man would I go to town on Yaks usage vs Ebs, but I don’t have the time. If you go to Stats.HockeyAnalysis, pull up Yak and Ebs. The two forwards that Yak has spent any time with are McD and Pou. He’s better with Pou in GF60, and pretty close to McD, excluding the 5 point performance yesterday, vs Ebs. After that, Yak doesn’t play regular minutes with any F.

    – The only players Yak has played 60 mins with: Hendriks and Kassian. Ebs: he’s played 60 mins + with: Hall, Drai + RNH.

    – Ebs has no points when playing with Hendricks, Letestu or Kassian: Yak has spent 75% of his TOI with those three: think about that. He’s better with LAnder

    – Ebs gets Pou, Hall, Drai, RNH and McD as his top-6. Yak gets less Pou, less McD, Hendricks, Letestu and Kassian as his top-6: COMEON.

  36. LostBoy says:

    Lois Lowe:
    I have a pet theory that Yak’s treatment, by seemingly all of his coaches, has to do with his inability to learn how to play left wing.

    I also don’t buy the argument that he was mishandled in Edmonton. Ever coach he’s had in the NHL deemed him unready for a top 6 role. That’s not an accident.

    Sure, they were frightened to play him in his natural top six position. Because they might lose.

    How’d that work out?

    (I’m mostly kidding…of course coaches fear for their jobs. Not giving Yakupov a featured offensive role is understandable. They got fired anyway. But the only good this player is ever going to do for any team is in a featured offensive role. If you can’t spend some of your many years working hard at finishing at or near the bottom of the fucking league managing to develop him in a featured offensive role, then I’ll count that as mishandling of a first overall. He would almost certainly have benefited from not being thrust into the NHL straight from the draft, but like I say, that wasn’t an option.)

  37. anonymous says:

    blainer:
    Just amazes me the excuses about this player. it’s everybody else’sfault he never succeeded.

    His lack of success has to do with the fact that he was nevergonna be an elite player to begin with. I saw this at WJC he played in.. he looked lost to me then and have always felt he was never elite

    At some point a lot of the posters here have to understand that maybe he is just not an NHL player and that he is a bust. Most of that draft year doesn’t look very promising either.

    Yak and Shultz. Put a period and move on.

    Yak had a great world juniors. Two of them. It was one of the reasons I was exited about him. They knocked out Canada twice and I believe Yak had the trick. Great after game interview.

  38. Gret99zky says:

    Of all the players who have frustrated and been traded only to excel on a different team, Yakupov will shine the brightest.

    The list of organizations who can unlock this kid and turn him into a true asset is long indeed.

    Seller’s remorse will abound.

  39. AsiaOil says:

    I was watching Yak a bit last night and he just looks dead – not even skating as there was little so hope his line mates could even accomplish a simple break-out let alone a dangerous rush into the offensive end of the rink. He looked like he was thinking “why the frack bother” playing with Korpse and Hendo who were unbelievably bad last night. No excuse as it’s his job to try – but it’s really the most lifeless I’ve ever seen him. What a way to use a 1OV. Would have been way better off trading the pick that year as Murray hash’t been any screaming hell either

  40. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Can anyone recall if there have been games where Eberle struggled and was bumped down the lineup or out of the lineup?

  41. Water Fire says:

    It’s just as plausible, given that McL and Chia aren’t fools and know games don’t matter now, they are playing guys they want to trade ahead of keepers, as opposed to not liking certain players.

    Playing Hendricks at centre could be showcasing his versatility, everyone knows his jam, Lander is better. Klink is the same player as Korpse and far less pricey.

    We have no idea how these boys roll until Chia starts rolling.

    I would like all of Fayne, Korpse, Hendricks, Letestu, Purcell, Schultz, Gryba dealt at the deadline (I’d take Gryba back as UFA if necessary) to reduce salary and recoup picks, but it’s a risk based on the trade and UFA market. I’d gamble.

  42. Rod from Viking says:

    Klima’s_Bucket,

    He was put on the third line last year for two shifts, that is all I can remember.

  43. Aron_S says:

    I think this is a tragic case of over-valuing the player. I like Yak and so much of what he brings/brought to the team in his first. He showed such potential, had such enthusiasm for the game and Twitter, it was hard not to cheer for the kid.

    I don’t often agree with the narrative put out there by MSM, but I do believe there is some iron in the words of Gregor and Rishaug when they suggest that Nail just can’t seem to do enough on his own to get noticed/promoted. At this point, I just hope that when they do move him they can get something of value for him (and do think they would get more for him now than the days of the “They’d be lucky to get a second round pick” rhetoric during Eakins first year).

    As has been mentioned here, seemingly good and valued players are moved out of Edmonton for after thoughts and third round picks (Hemsky, Gagner, Petry). It looks like they were lucky to jumpstart Purcell’s game in hindsight, but they might have hung on to Hemsky a year or two too long and Gagner needs a Schultz-ian level of evaluate your game and figure out if you’re an NHL player.

    Sail on, Sarnia Sting. We hardly knew ye?

  44. Water Fire says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    Can anyone recall if there have been games where Eberle struggled and was bumped down the lineup or out of the lineup?

    I can’t remember any stretch. Doubt he’d score more than Yak playing Yak’s TOI.

    Please understand I think Eberle is a fine player. I think he has more nose for the net than Yak, likely more hockey sense, but Yak has more physical talent and jam and is more explosive.

  45. Gret99zky says:

    anonymous:
    Seems like an old regime move, burying an assets value rather than a pump and dump.

    Yak should have been traded a long time ago. Horses gotta run. Why shouldn’t a number 1 overall expect a little leeway. Kids never played down the lineup in his life.

    I have yet to see any evidence that this org is capable of a “pump and dump”.

  46. Water Fire says:

    If Yak is glum it’s because his ankle is still wonky. He’ll be hooped till next season likely. It was a tough one for Getzlaf too in an Olympic year.

  47. Lois Lowe says:

    LostBoy,

    Or he’s not good enough to play in a featured offensive role.

  48. anonymous says:

    Gret99zky: I have yet to see any evidence that this org is capable of a “pump and dump”.

    If they really are dumping him then how can they not get him back with Mcdavid. No brainer.

  49. Aron_S says:

    AsiaOil,

    The hindsight of Snow offering every pick in the Islanders draft to grab Murray? I know the optics of trading out of a 1st overall are horrendous, but keeping the pick (and the seemingly subsequent squabbling amongst scouts/ownership) has turned into a gong show. If Galchenyuk had been healthy that entire year, that draft might look substantially different.

  50. Water Fire says:

    This is so crazy I want to re-post something Gregor wrote from ON in case some of you don’t read there:

    “The most ridiculous stat involves Gretzky. He had a mind-blowing 79 five-point games with the Oilers in 696 games. He averaged a five point game in one of every 8.8 games. He averaged almost nine 5+ point games every year for nine years. He was so much better than everyone else in the high-scoring 1980s”

    As LT said we Oiler fans have been looked upon favourably by the hockey Gords, then and now.

  51. square_wheels says:

    Water Fire,

    High ankle sprains are extremely slow to recover.

  52. LostBoy says:

    Lois Lowe:
    LostBoy,

    Or he’s not good enough to play in a featured offensive role.

    This certainly remains a possibility.

  53. sesame_oil says:

    AsiaOil,

    I agree with you asiaoil, it looks like the best thing for yak is to move to another team. That team will instantly be my second favourite team (except the leafs). He will never succeed here playing on the 3rd/4th line. I am a yak fan but he looks disinterested or just tense playing in the defensive zone. Afraid to make a mistake or thinking too much. \

    I hate it when the MSM keeps on saying yak is in the league long enough that he needs to produce or needs to be a driver on any lines. Then when RNH/Ebs don’t produce, it is because they were injured or still young or need to play with Conner. Nothing against RNH/Ebs, I like them as well but it just seems liked bias opinions from MSM. Next they will say RNH had a tough year because he had a papercut on his fingers, those are tough injuries to come back from :-). We just need to be fair and objective with all the players.

  54. frjohnk says:

    Once the deadline comes, Purcell is traded and RNH is back, do the Oilers run 3 scoring lines?

    Hall-Drai-Yak
    Poo-McDavid-Ebs
    Kassian-RNH-Pak ( well, kinda scoring line)

    or do they run two scoring lines?

    Hall-RNH-Drai
    Poo-McDavid-Ebs

    We wait and see.

    With Yak, we can not look at him as a number 1 pick
    We can not look at him as a player who is going to drive the play.

    But if we look at him as a guy who at $2.5M and with a decent center, he can be valuable to us. His centers has seemed to be feast or famine. McDavid or Letestu and the results are not surprising.

    My hope for him is to become a decent second liner who is a PP shooter specialist. Not sure that is with the Oilers as Yak needs a PP to run through the left side ( with RHer’s). But our PP runs through the right side with McDavid, Hall, Draisaitl, RNH all on the same side Yak needs to be, in order to use his one timer.

    There is a part of that hopes they don’t trade him, as there is a faint hope that maybe one day, the game slows down for him and it all comes together for him. Then there is a part of me that believes a second opinion is probably best for team and player.

  55. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide:
    Anders Nilsson gets the start tonight.

    Yeah, I heard that line before. I ain’t falling for it this time. Nice try.

  56. square_wheels says:

    So if Yak is truly not going to find his way in Edmonton, what team might he be a good fit ? What type of centre that’s not a generational stud like McD could he find RW success with ?

    We’ve talked for years about offensive players needing a muse, succes comes in pairs.

    I’m not interested in the return until someone can show me 3 credible centres, that will be #2 C’s, that are strong possession players and are primary playmakers.

  57. Kmart99 says:

    kinger_OIL:
    – Oh man would I go to town on Yaks usage vs Ebs, but I don’t have the time.If you go to Stats.HockeyAnalysis, pull up Yak and Ebs.The two forwards that Yak has spent any time with are McD and Pou.He’s better with Pou in GF60, and pretty close to McD, excluding the 5 point performance yesterday, vs Ebs.After that, Yak doesn’t play regular minutes with any F.

    – The only players Yak has played 60 mins with: Hendriks and Kassian.Ebs: he’s played 60 mins + with: Hall, Drai + RNH.

    – Ebs has no points when playing with Hendricks, Letestu or Kassian: Yak has spent 75% of his TOI with those three: think about that. He’s better with LAnder

    – Ebs gets Pou, Hall, Drai, RNH and McD as his top-6.Yak gets less Pou, less McD, Hendricks, Letestu and Kassian as his top-6: COMEON.

    Letestu produces more offense than Yak. How does his usage compare?
    Yak is struggling, and it goes waaaaaay beyond his usage.

  58. Water Fire says:

    square_wheels:
    So if Yak is truly not going to find his way in Edmonton, what team might he be a good fit ? What type of centre that’s not a generational stud like McD could he find RW success with ?

    We’ve talked for years about offensive players needing a muse, succes comes in pairs.

    I’m not interested in the return until someone can show me 3 credible centres, that will be #2 C’s, that are strong possession players and are primary playmakers.

    Maybe the problem is that Yak needs his own line. Maybe he needs to be the driver.

    He was the key player on his junior team. Yak needs to start driving the net and beating players and sniping to get his mojo going. He needs some third line shelter but with enough talent.

    I don’t know if they can work him in but at least develop the high cost asset.

  59. Centre of attention says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yeah, I heard that line before. I ain’t falling for it this time. Nice try.

    To be fair, Jack Micheals had tweeted out earlier in the day that “It looked like Nilsson was to start”.

    They later updated it saying Talbot.

    I was duped as well my friend!

  60. godot10 says:

    stephen sheps:

    I absolutely adore Yak and truly think he’s been mishandled from day one. Not his fault.

    You mean Day Two. How did Krueger mishandle Yakupov? He didn’t. And how did Nelson mishandle Yakupov? He didn’t.

  61. MrEd says:

    Gret99zky,

    I like this sentiment.
    He’s a sniper.

  62. square_wheels says:

    Water Fire,

    I can’t see Chia NOT moving him, likely at the draft. I’ve got a gut feel it’s the Rags that make a move for him, Sather doesn’t bat .900 like the old days, but then again, Vigneult demands a lot from his guys.

    Yak isn’t moving home until this contract expires, next year defines the rest of his career in the NHL.

  63. kinger_OIL says:

    Kmart99,

    – Anyone would “struggle” if they spent 75% of ice time with Hendricks, Letestu or Kassian, and were expected to create offense.

    – Ebs for instance has scored no points when playing with those 3
    *I’m not saying Yak>Ebs

  64. Water Fire says:

    square_wheels:
    Water Fire,

    I can’t see Chia NOT moving him, likely at the draft. I’ve got a gut feel it’s the Rags that make a move for him, Sather doesn’t bat .900 like the old days, but then again, Vigneult demands a lot from his guys.

    Yak isn’t moving home until this contract expires, next year defines the rest of his career in the NHL.

    We’ll see soon I think.

  65. Lois Lowe says:

    LostBoy: This certainly remains a possibility.

    I like the kid and I see the talent he has. I also see that he can bring a dynamic to the Oilers’ line up that they don’t really have. Yak is quick, physical, and has that cannon for a shot. I don’t really see the need to move him either. He’s being paid the same as Korpse and will still be an RFA when his deal expires. He has little to no value on the market and the talent IS there.

    He came into the league under Kruger, then Eakins, then Nelson, then McLellan (and all of the assistants). Every single one of those coaches didn’t trust him for long in the top 6 and every single one of them had a professional interest in developing him properly.

    Throughout all of the injuries over the years and throughout all of the team’s offensive droughts Yak has never been able to move up and stay with the talented players. I have trouble with the notion that it’s got more to do with the organization than the player.

    One of the indictments of the Oilers’ developmental system is that it gifted ice time to players who either didn’t earn it or weren’t ready for it. Yak is a case where they din’t gift him ice time he didn’t earn and they didn’t give him ice time he wasn’t ready for. It’s just that he’s a very flawed player.

    As I said above, I think it has to do with the fact that he hasn’t learned to play on the left side. Many coaches (and Woodguys) seem to have a preference for sticks-on-boards, and I think all of them have tried at one point to move him over.

  66. Centre of attention says:

    I really wonder why Yak hasn’t had a shot on the Draisaitl line, just to spice things up. I think his injury this season really held him back. Ankle injuries are pretty sketchy, especially when you have to skate for a living.

    He seems to rise to the challenge when put in a position to succeed. But if put in a spot where he has to score consistently on a lower line [impossible with this roster] in order to be promoted he seems to shrink away a bit.

    He was 2nd or 3rd on the team in shots before getting assassinated by the linesmen. He is snake bitten something fierce. He even struggled to score goals with Connor [2 goals total] but picked up plenty of assists and generated dozens of shots.

    This was supposed to be his year. Sadly, it was not to be. I really hope he has a long and successful career. Great kid.

  67. Gordies Elbow says:

    square_wheels,

    We owe Slats a good one for Talbot, I guess.

    Oiler’s east would do well having a player like him. Wouldn’t be the first time I’d cheered for a former Oiler in Rangers silks.

  68. Kmart99 says:

    kinger_OIL:
    Kmart99,

    – Anyone would “struggle” if they spent 75% of ice time with Hendricks, Letestu or Kassian, and were expected to create offense.

    – Ebs for instance has scored no points when playing with those 3
    *I’m not saying Yak>Ebs

    Letestu>Yak is what I’m saying. Letestu’s usage is more harsh, he’s a centre, he scores more.
    At the minimum, Letestu=Yak.

  69. godot10 says:

    Pouzar:
    Ebs the golden child. Yak the red headed step child. Why did I even bother with this thread.

    Why do people blame Eberle for the management and coaches (not Krueger, nor Nelson) who mishandle Yakupov? It isn’t Eberle’s fault. Eberle has be one of the NHL’s most consistently productive RW’s in the NHL from his first NHL game.

  70. Bruce McCurdy says:

    In his rookie year Yak got a nice stretch with Horcoff and really got hot. On the year he scored 10 even strength goals in 9 hours. He played just under 2 hours with Horc (10th most common mate among skates, 4th among forwards) and scored 7 goals, more than with any other player, indeed 70% of his EV goal production in 20% of his EV TOI. He scored just 2 in 4½ hours with Gagner, 3 and 1 respectively in about 2½ hours each with MPS & Hemsky. Not exactly shit linemates — and he responded by leading the team in goals.

    The next year he played over 12 hours 5v5 but scored just 7 goals, 6 of them in 5 hours with Gagner (again his most common linemate) but none at all in 4 hours with RNH.

    Then last year he played nearly 18 hours at evens but scored just 9 goals. Roy and Purcell were by far his most common linemates, with Arco, Drai and Poo the next wave.

    Finally this year he has just 3 goals in 7 hours, with Pouliot, Letestu & McDavid his 3 most common mates. Injury to McDavid was unlucky obviously, though all the time Yak missed himself happened during the time McD was down & out. They have played over 7 periods together at evens with Yak sniping just 1 goal.

    Not much sign of Hall in those lists, and the Yak-RNH combo remains barren after over 6 hours together over the years (Yak is 0-5-5 with a 39.3% CF%).

    Fair to say these are “middle six” linemates for the most part?

  71. square_wheels says:

    Gordies Elbow,

    They are devoid of RW offensive players, Stephan and Brassard might be good C’s for him.

    As long as he doesn’t fleece us with a Staal contract coming back and we’re adding a 1st rounder. Crafty old bugger would try it I bet.

  72. Water Fire says:

    Maybe a peak into the inner workings from The Journal

    Hall
    ““I haven’t played with a right-shooting centreman since Sam Gagner, and in the third period, I thought we did a good job (five shots) with our (new) line. It’s a lot different line than with Teddy and Leon. It’s more get the puck to the red-line, get it to the blue line and go from there. … I want to be receiving the puck and if he can do some grunt work and get pucks to the net, that’ll help myself and our line out.””

    Does this mean they will look for a right shot RW for CMD? Meaning Eberle has found a new centre?

    To me Hall’s linemates need to feed him and make sacrifices because he’s better and he thinks so too.

    McLellan
    “I think the confidence will come back with Leon and Taylor on the power play and being better defensively, which usually leads to better offence.”

    If players won’t play 200ft I suspect they are on the way out.

    So Eberle has to be reliable 2 ways and Yak needs to get a mullet (no sideburns) and put in ear plugs (dog whistles).

  73. Kmart99 says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Fair to say. If you ask me.

  74. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Centre of attention: To be fair, Jack Micheals had tweeted out earlier in the day that “It looked like Nilsson was to start”.

    They later updated it saying Talbot.

    I was duped as well my friend!

    Just yanking chains for the hell of it. I just saw “Nilsson to start” & I’m going “yeah, sur-re, heard that one just the other day.”

  75. Woogie63 says:

    Purcell is a 30 year old UFA RW being paid $4.5M playing with Hall and Driasaitl,
    Doesn’t hit, doesn’t cycle, plays PP and PK, the MSM say he can play with talent (NHL code)

    Yakupov is a 21 year old RFA RW being paid $2.5M playing with our spare parts
    Is hitting, cycling and plays 2PP.

    High time to choose to give Yakupov some real talent to play with.

  76. MrEd says:

    Is Nail a RW or LW?

  77. Kmart99 says:

    MrEd,

    Shoots left. plays RW

  78. mustang says:

    I really don’t understand the love fest for Yak. I like the guy as a person what I know of him. That part I understand. Yak has always been a player that never used his teammates well. I noticed in the world juniors before he was drafted that he would try and go through the whole team instead of passing to a teammate. It was like he didn’t understand that his teammates could play as well. Well, that does’t work in the NHL and it hasn’t. He looked ok with #97 because he actually got the puck and moved it instantly to Connor which was a great plan. But saying that he never set the world on fire by any means.
    If he was really that good he would be pushing his way up the lineup, but he isn’t. I wish he would, but he just doesn’t have the confidence or the hockey IQ to push to the top. I guess you can blame every coach and every GM but it all comes back to him. Like LT says “it’s time for a second opinion”

  79. godot10 says:

    Lois Lowe:

    He came into the league under Kruger, then Eakins, then Nelson, then McLellan (and all of the assistants). Every single one of those coaches didn’t trust him for long in the top 6 and every single one of them had a professional interest in developing him properly.

    Under Krueger, Yakupov played 2nd line with Gagner and Hemsky OR Gagner or Paajarvi OR third line with Horcoff. He was the feature player on the 2nd PP unit. i.e. Krueger player him top six (limited minutes) with bountiful power play time.

    Nelson didn’t have a second line. He had a first line (Pouliot, Nugent-Hopkins, and Eberle), a D-zone start line (Hendricks, Gordon, Klinkhammer), an OZ start line in (Purcell, Roy, and Yakupov) and Lander’s line (with whatever remaining wingers were healthy). I think that qualifies as a top six role with a heavy zone start and soft minutes push.

  80. Aron_S says:

    Nice goal, Slepyshev!

  81. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Shepyshev with a fine solo effort, a steal deep in the o-zone, a goal line drive drive and a backhand stuff goal. NHL defending & goaltending nowhere in evidence, but it was a nice play all the same.

    1-0 Condors.

  82. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Is Bucky coaching the powerplay again?

  83. MrEd says:

    Kmart99,

    I agree.
    Makes his a specialist though.
    He needs a spot, on a roster.

  84. square_wheels says:

    Anyone else loving the new X-Files ?

  85. Aron_S says:

    6 LHD in Bakersfield tonight and it looks like Nikitin is benched? Considering they’re on a 3 game winning streak, it sounds like it’s for the best.

  86. mustang says:

    David:
    I think it should be on the team to put players in position to succeed and I don’t believe the Oilers have ever done this with Yakupov. I believe Lowtide said (apologies if you never said this) something along the lines of the Oilers had to know what Yak was when they drafted him and it would be stupid to try to change him. He’s an offensive player, not a “two way player” (meaning defensive) not a “shut down player”, you have him on to score goals and make plays. If you aren’t going to do this you shouldn’t have drafted him and shouldn’t keep him. Put him with your top guys or ship him out. He’s useless playing with Letestu and Hendricks.

    What people always say is players have to prove themselves. What a bad concept. If Eberle played 12 mins a night with our bottom six guys he wouldn’t produce much and it would be stupid to expect him to produce much. Put him with our top players and he shines. Same principle for Yak. Use him with McDavid/Nuge/Hall/Drai or get rid of him. If you are waiting to see if he’ll accomplish anything apart from them you won’t find it. Just plain silliness.

    Yes they have he’s played with RNH and Hall, before McDavid was around. That didn’t work out he was lost playing with those guys. Eberle was given a chance and he ran with it, he was an all-star in his second season, I think he’s proven what he can do. Defence is something every player has to do, this is non negotiable, some players are better than others, but being total lost in the dzone is something that needs to change and fast…OV says Hi

  87. Lowetide says:

    square_wheels:
    Anyone else loving the new X-Files ?

    Yes.

  88. Aron_S says:

    Ontario scores on the PP, high glove on Nilsson, but can’t tell if he was screened. Tied 1-1.

  89. Aron_S says:

    square_wheels,

    Other than the exposition heavy first episode, yep. It’s a strong “15 years later” version of what continues to be a formative show for me.

  90. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Nilsson makes 15 straight saves for the first time since St. Swithin’s Day

  91. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Cursed him. #16 goes in. 1-1.

  92. 719 says:

    Yak loses a lot of board battles. Mostly he tries to intercept pucks, rather than battle for them. He often loses puck battles in the defensive zone. I doubt this endears him to Chia or McL.

    I like Yak as much as anyone on this board, but he has to really work on that. Hall is also guilty of this, but Hall puts up alot of points so that kinda washes the sins away.

  93. Aron_S says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    This is the first time I’ve watched BAK in a while. Are they generally this bad or does ONT have a strong team? They look sloppy (the PP is Oilers level embarrassing) and the shot count doesn’t flatter this team. Nilsson has definitely had to be sharp to keep them in this game through the first.

  94. Lowetide says:

    Aron_S:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    This is the first time I’ve watched BAK in a while. Are they generally this bad or does ONT have a strong team? They look sloppy (the PP is Oilers level embarrassing) and the shot count doesn’t flatter this team. Nilsson has definitely had to be sharp to keep them in this game through the first.

    Ontario is very good.

  95. 719 says:

    His lack of goal scoring though, I think you can attribute to his line-mates. He likes to score either from the right face-off circle or by barrelling in on goalies. Not one of his current line-mates is able to spring him or give him a nice pass in his favourite spot. They are more apt to shoot it on net and look for rebounds.

  96. Aron_S says:

    Lowetide,

    Like father, like son? Something to that effect.

    Zykov is interesting and Ehrhoff is having no trouble playing for the farm team.

    Why do I always think it was STL that grabbed Zykov? … Nevermind. Barbashev.

  97. hags9k says:

    I imagine Yak will be just fine if he ever takes his first shift in his career with both a strong defense and a strong center.
    Right now he is like a supercharger on a car with 2 flat tires.
    Pray for balance.

  98. Lowetide says:

    Khaira damn near scored. Very encouraged by his progress.

  99. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Lowetide,

    When I hit refresh, I get this white screen that pops up and says, “Leave a comment.”

    I don’t know if there is a new glitch on the site or not.

    For the most part, I’d rather just follow along with the comments.

    So, that is my comment.

    Thanks for providing this space again LT.

  100. hags9k says:

    I would be excited to see him get Purcell’s minutes, but it is a big risk. Teddy P has been very very good, and probably deserves another contract.

  101. Aron_S says:

    Lowetide,

    Watching him here definitely makes me think he’ll end up back in Edmonton before the end of the year. He’s a fun player to watch at this level and you can see him sliding into Korpse’s spot.

    Is Moroz injured? Noticed he’s not on the starting line up, so I assume as much.

  102. Lowetide says:

    Nice cover by Pitlick there.

  103. Oilspill says:

    Putting stats aside Yak just is a mess without the puck. His hustle is almost non existent and coaches hate that. His hockey IQ ,anticipation, and other intangibles are just questionable most of the time. Can’t see much interest from other teams at market value.

  104. Lowetide says:

    Aron_S:
    Lowetide,

    Like father, like son? Something to that effect.

    Zykov is interesting and Ehrhoff is having no trouble playing for the farm team.

    Why do I always think it was STL that grabbed Zykov? … Nevermind. Barbashev.

    Yeah, it was a weird trade because it involved two teams and Carrier/Zykov. I check on that trade a lot, so have followed the entire group.

  105. Lowetide says:

    Aron_S:
    Lowetide,

    Watching him here definitely makes me think he’ll end up back in Edmonton before the end of the year. He’s a fun player to watch at this level and you can see him sliding into Korpse’s spot.

    Is Moroz injured? Noticed he’s not on the starting line up, so I assume as much.

    Moroz is injured iirc. last played Jan 23

  106. NomoreLoweMcT says:

    I completely agree with your comments about Yak. I really hope that when Purcell is gone, he gets a chance to show what he can do on the 2nd line for the rest of the year. That said, I think Nail will be playing elsewhere next year and wish him all the best.
    P.S. Washington should get him so that Ovi can be a mentor for him!

  107. SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo! says:

    SwedishPoster,

    Pouzar,

    Because you’ve never seen talent?

    The stuff out of this blog in the last 72 hours is amazing.

    I’m willing to play Devils Advocate for the hell of it to stir the pot there are funny things happening lately.

    1) Eberle is legit. If you don’t believe that you don’t understand hockey (sorry if I offended people on this blog but grab a brain and recognize what you have for once)

    2) Yak is a bust (nothing against his attitude but Eberle (another bust allegedly) has outscored Yak is 10 less games. Busts happen, shirt happens and I’ll gladly recant my position otherwse

  108. Lowetide says:

    Again, please refrain from comments that are of a personal nature about players. Thanks.

    A nice defensive play by Dillon Simpson on the 4×5 there.

  109. rickithebear says:

    Oilspill:
    Putting stats aside Yak just is a mess without the puck. His hustle is almost non existent and coaches hate that. His hockey IQ ,anticipation, and other intangibles are just questionable most of the time. Can’t see much interest from other teams at market value.

    The one thing they grabbed was his quick accurate release.
    The accurate???????

    Pouliot (12.6%) – Mcdavid (23.1%) – Eberle (17.8%)
    Hall (8.7%) – Letestu (9.1%) -Kassian (12.5%)
    Pakarinen (8.0%)-Draisatl (16.1%) – Purcell (9.3%)
    Yak (5.3%) – Hendricks (4.9) – Korpikoski (10.3%)

    I would Move korpikoski to Draisatl’s line based on SH%
    and move Pak to4LW and Yak to4 RW

    the lines are were they pretty much should be.

    Yak, Purcell should not be here next year.

    We need high SH% wings.

  110. Lowetide says:

    SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo!:
    SwedishPoster,

    Pouzar,

    Because you’ve never seen talent?

    The stuff out of this blog in the last 72 hours is amazing.

    I’m willing to play Devils Advocate for the hell of it to stir the pot there are funny things happening lately.

    1) Eberle is legit. If you don’t believe that you don’t understand hockey (sorry if I offended people on this blog but grab a brain and recognize what you have for once)

    2) Yak is a bust (nothing against his attitude but Eberle (another bust allegedly) has outscored Yak is 10 less games. Busts happen, shirt happens and I’ll gladly recant my position otherwse

    I actually posted in the original item that Yak is having a decent season. Sweeping statements about what we do not know tend to go nowhere.

  111. Lowetide says:

    Khaira scores late. A nice season for the big man.

  112. Aron_S says:

    Lowetide,

    Was Klinkhammer offside? I’m watching the Ontario feed and they never go back. Ehrhoff was convinced and he seems to be the man who would know.

    Edit: Beauty shot with all kinds of time though.

  113. Aron_S says:

    Well Klink gets one on a weird bounce, Khaira with the assist. 3-1 BAK.

    Klinkhammer really is that rare breed of too good for the AHL/not good enough for the NHL.

  114. frjohnk says:

    Lowetide:
    Khaira scores late. A nice season for the big man.

    Nice to hear.

    I would imagine he plays more with the Oilers next year. Maybe not full time, as it depends on who is here next year in the bottom part of the roster, but a bit more than this year.

    If one squints hard enough, a 4th line that consists of Pak and Khaira may not look too bad in the not too distant future.

  115. rickithebear says:

    the center Hall is most productive with is Letestu.
    The forward he is worst with is Eberle.
    0 PTS in 80 min EVTOI

    If we use WOWY
    the best Forward pairs or Lines are.

    pouliot-Mcdavid-Eberle
    Hall-Letestu-XXX
    XXX-Draisatl-Purcell

    They added Pakiraines speed and pressure to Draisatl/Purcell
    Pak-Drai-Purcell

    Kassian is best with Letestu
    Hall-Letestu-Kassian

    Yak is great with Mcdavid
    but his numbers are not better than pouliot or Eberle’s
    We want to win! Right!
    Yaks 2nd best number are with Korpikoski
    Yak-XXX-Lorpikoski

    Well Hendricks FO% and PK
    His best numbers are with Hall, then with korpikoski.
    Yak-Hendricks-Korpiloski

    Almost every line has two Pairs of Forward with there best or Second Best performances.

    pouliot-Mcdavid-Eberle
    Pouliot-Mcdavid
    Mcdcvid-Eberle

    Hall-Letestu-Kassin
    Hall-Letestu
    Lestestu-Kassian

    Pakarinen-Draisatl-Purcel
    Draw-Purcell

    Yak-Hendricks-Korpikoski
    Yak-Koro
    Hendricks-Korp

  116. anonymous says:

    mustang:
    I really don’t understand the love fest for Yak. I like the guy as a person what I know of him. That part I understand. Yak has always been a player that never used his teammates well. I noticed in the world juniors before he was drafted that he would try and go through the whole team instead of passing to a teammate. It was like he didn’t understand that his teammates could play as well. Well, that does’t work in the NHL and it hasn’t. He looked ok with #97 because he actually got the puck and moved it instantly to Connor which was a great plan. But saying that he never set the world on fire by any means.
    If he was really that good he would be pushing his way up the lineup, but he isn’t. I wish he would, but he just doesn’t have the confidence or the hockey IQ to push to the top. I guess you can blame every coach and every GM but it all comes back to him. Like LT says “it’s time for a second opinion”

    Nonsense. He had 9 assists I believe in the world juniors and was one of Russia’s best players. 17 points in 13 games over two tournaments.

  117. dustrock says:

    Yak seems like a chill bro but he has to be one of the worst #1 draft picks of all time. Didn’t Schremp score 200 points in junior or something? Some guys have all the tools to destroy junior but don’t have the toolbox to star in the NHL.

    Don’t really see why it’s a different story from Jultz. Player fails, organization fails. Time to move on.

  118. rickithebear says:

    hags9k:
    I imagine Yak will be just fine if he ever takes his first shift in his career with both a strong defense and a strong center.
    Right now he is like a supercharger on a car with 2 flat tires.
    Pray for balance.

    The two flat tires are his hocket sense and shooting accuracy!

    We quote WOWY

    When they build our 4 lines with thbest WOWY pairs

    People act like the high school girlfriend.
    All heart. No brain!
    He needs Mcdavids.

  119. Aron_S says:

    Condors win 3-2 after a late deflection makes it past Nilsson on a Ehrhoff point shot. 37 saves on 39 shots.

  120. OilClog says:

    Yak playing on the Gord damn 4th, sin.

    Gordon Damn Lightfoot Letestu playing beside Hall, and Teddy beside the good Dr.

    All the while Yak is playing with Love his heart Hendricks and Petrell the return.

    He produced when given the chance this season.

    Yet. 4th line.. Left wing.

    Good golly.

    I’ll cheer for Yak even as a Flame ?

  121. Lowetide says:

    OilClog:
    Yak playing on the Gord damn 4th, sin.

    Gordon Damn Lightfoot Letestu playing beside Hall, and Teddy beside the good Dr.

    All the while Yak is playing with Love his heart Hendricks and Petrell the return.

    He produced when given the chance this season.

    Yet. 4th line.. Left wing.

    Good golly.

    I’ll cheer for Yak even as a Flame ?

    That Gordon damn LIghtfoot line made me laugh.

  122. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide,

    Is Khaira playing wing mostly for the Condors?

    I always thought he would be that big, physical, two-way center. Maybe this “hybrid forward” thing is a new trend. Platzer/Miller bounce between center and wing as well it seems.

  123. dangilitis says:

    Klink should be played above Korpikoski, at least he is showing that he wants to be in the NHL

    I would pencil in a last chance texaco for Pitlick but I think sadly he is lost.

    Khaira would be a good option based on recent play, but he probably benefits more from higher minutes in the AHL rather than 3rd/4th line W to Letestu or Hendricks. Unless they want to try him out as a 4th C with Hendricks as mentor on the W

    Miller – man, don’t know whose leg he needs to hump to get another chance. 94 pts in past 99 AHL games on a team starved for offence, and 6 pts in a 9 game NHL debut playing alongside skill. Lander scored 8 pts in his first ~100 games.

    Was starting to get sentimental about Purcell but I have been sufficiently convinced that trading him is best. Especially with playoff picture clearly out of view, drop-off in pts, and need to give Yak a C ASAP.

    After the trade I would run
    McMagic line
    Hall-Draisaitl-Yakupov
    Iiro-Letestu-Kassian
    Hendricks-Lander/Khaira-Miller/Klink

    Then when RNH returns:
    Davo’s devils
    Hall-Draisaitl-Kassian
    Iiro-RNH-Yak
    Hendricks-Letestu-Miller/Lander

    Thoughts?

  124. Quinlan says:

    Centre of attention,

    Khaira’s been playing a lot of center.

  125. Centre of attention says:

    Quinlan:
    Centre of attention,

    Khaira’s been playing a lot of center.

    Good.

  126. SoCaloil says:

    Yaks +/- also tells a story
    It was a league low -33 or so for the past two years
    What is it this year? Much much better

    He’s not cheating for offense, playing w whom he got and not bitching ala Drouin

    One thing we learned last year is that he does need a particular C to play with
    Think he’s been working on his overall game rather than just shots
    Plus I noticed little support on his o zone sorties

    If he was drafted later, he’d be playing with a couple veterans getting proper mentoring
    Getting AHL train in if needed
    But because oilers

    I really hope he gets a C w whom he clicks

  127. SoCaloil says:

    dangilitis,

    RNH needs either skill or power 2way similar to Kopitar -Lucic
    yak hasn’t meshed w Nuge

    Nuge – Kassian for this year
    Nuge-Leon
    Nuge-stammer ( one can dream)
    Nuge – Lucic

    Shit Perron won’t re-sign but equivalent

    And a third wheel

  128. JDï™ says:

    For anyone wanting to watch archived streams, this seems to work very nicely:

    http://koditips.com/kodi-pro-sport-addon-streams-from-reddit/

    Obviously you have to install kodi first.

    But yesterday’s game v the Leafs is nowhere to be found out there – not even on that Russian youtube-like site. I guess nobody wants to devote server resources to a game between the two last place teams.

  129. hags9k says:

    rickithebear,

    Whatever you say Ricki, I think there’s still hope for him to emerge, even without 97. Give all these forwards a top D pair and they will get better looks.

  130. mujidog says:

    I’m a Yakcity fan and the guy has had like 14 NHL coaches in his short career, but we still don’t really know what he is or can be at the NHL level. Hence, Yakupov the former 1st overall selection is a disappointment.

    At this point, what draft position would he have had to be to NOT be a disappointment?

    8th overall? Mid 1st rounder? 25th overall? Early 2nd rounder? Third rounder?
    This is depressing, but I’d say mid-2nd rounder. If Yakupov was drafted in the 2nd round, we’d be saying things like, “hmm… his performance and development matches our expectations”

  131. BONVIE says:

    Wow thats a long list of excuses in the comments section for Yakapov. I never understood why so many posters dream up every possible excuse for him to account for his poor play. With all that said I would rather have Yakapov play right wing with Draisatel and Hall, then to consider using poor man’s Toby Peterson centering Hall and Draisatel. Id rather have a softer defensive winger playing top 6 then a soft defensive center playing top 6.

    In the end they might just keep Purcell with them come game time, and perhaps The Todd is just giving that line a wake up call.

  132. BONVIE says:

    mujidog:
    I’m a Yakcity fan and the guy has had like 14 NHL coaches in his short career, but we still don’t really know what he is or can be at the NHL level. Hence, Yakupov the former 1st overall selection is a disappointment.

    At this point, what draft position would he have had to be to NOT be a disappointment?

    8th overall? Mid 1st rounder? 25th overall? Early 2nd rounder? Third rounder?
    This is depressing, but I’d say mid-2nd rounder. If Yakupov was drafted in the 2nd round, we’d be saying things like, “hmm… his performance and development matches our expectations”

    Disappointment for first overall yes but there are lots of players taken in the first round especially from 10th overall down that dont even play NHL games and the Oilers have had a high percentage of draft busts in the first round that barely played any NHL games. Lets start from
    2000 with Mhinkov, Niinimaki, then there is those like Schremp, Poulliot, Plante, Nash, who played a few games in the NHL, but definitely not impact players.

  133. spoiler says:

    The clock is ticking… I hope Yak hears it.

  134. russ99 says:

    I don’t think the clock is ticking for one big reason.

    He’s signed to a fairly cheap bridge deal for next year, and the cap looks to be going down. Also due to this, he’s more part of the McDavid cluster than the Hall cluster, of which players are going to me moved from.

    Also, his usage seems to be more McLellan getting him to learn a 200 foot game without an Eakins-like throw under the bus, and the kid has shown a ton of effort.

    When Ebs $6M gets dealt for our defenseman, we’re not going to lose too much slotting Yak in and all the hard work he’s putting in will pay off.

  135. Woodguy says:

    Here is every forward Yak has played over 100 min with in his career.

    There are 17 of them and its in order by 5v5 TOI together.

    The number next to the name is the increase or decrease in GF/60 for that player away from Yak.

    I.e. Gagner is .36 so his GF/60 rate is .36 better with Yak. Roy was .20 worse with Yak

    GAGNER, SAM 0.36
    ROY, DEREK -0.20
    PURCELL, TEDDY -0.91
    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN -1.09
    POULIOT, BENOIT 0.05
    EBERLE, JORDAN -0.64
    ARCOBELLO, MARK -0.45
    PERRON, DAVID 0.25
    HEMSKY, ALES -1.39
    HALL, TAYLOR 0.85
    DRAISAITL, LEON -1.86
    LETESTU, MARK -1.05
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS 1.68
    LANDER, ANTON 0.14
    MCDAVID, CONNOR 0.17
    SMYTH, RYAN -0.06
    HORCOFF, SHAWN 3.13

    The take away here?

    Yak plays hockey like Nuke Laloosh fucks and pitches….kinda all over the place.

    He’s OK in a secondary role, but was a big drag on both DrySaddle and Arco.

    Sruggles big time with tougher minutes UNLESS its with Hall or McDavid.

    That could describe a lot of players.

    Also,

    Horcoff +3.10

    Horcoff w/ Yak 118min 5.05 GF.60 (!!!!) (McDavi’d 3.8 is an unreal number, this one is ludicrous)

    Oh Kaptain My Kaptain!!!

    No wonder rookie Yak was so pleased to play with you.

    MacT pushing you out the door and not replacing the “vet who can hold hands” is another disaster on the long list of MacT GM accomplishments.

  136. Woodguy says:

    Same exercise for Eberle.

    Strangely, he too has played with 17 forward over 100min in his career.

    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN 0.78
    HALL, TAYLOR 0.81
    GAGNER, SAM 0.97
    HORCOFF, SHAWN 0.59
    POULIOT, BENOIT 0.64
    SMYTH, RYAN 2.41
    YAKUPOV, NAIL -0.08
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS 0.58
    PERRON, DAVID 0.02
    COGLIANO, ANDREW -0.38
    JONES, RYAN 0.16
    ARCOBELLO, MARK 1.1
    HARTIKAINEN, TEEMU 1.73
    PURCELL, TEDDY -0.87
    GORDON, BOYD -0.56
    LANDER, ANTON 1.18

    Most everyone is much better with Eberle than away, save for a few players lower on the list. (mostly players who played a lot on other teams in this time frame)

    That’s a pretty impressive result for his career.

  137. Woodguy says:

    Now lets do GA/60 differences for the same groups of forwards.

    If the number is negative, then they experience more GA/60 with Yak than away.

    GAGNER, SAM -0.37
    ROY, DEREK -0.95
    PURCELL, TEDDY 0.43
    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN -1.88
    POULIOT, BENOIT -1.45
    EBERLE, JORDAN -3.1
    ARCOBELLO, MARK 0.01
    PERRON, DAVID 0.58
    HEMSKY, ALES 0.24
    HALL, TAYLOR -0.32
    DRAISAITL, LEON -1.98
    LETESTU, MARK 0.24
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS -0.81
    LANDER, ANTON -0.05
    MCDAVID, CONNOR 0.77
    SMYTH, RYAN -0.19
    HORCOFF, SHAWN 0.73

    Similar results to the GF/60 I think.

    When he moves up the roster the results aren’t good, when he is in a secondary role its ok.

    Let the record show that at 19 games in McDavid scores more and gets scored on less with Yak. :)

    Also,

    Oh Kaptain My Kaptain.

    Fuck MacT.

    Man

  138. Woodguy says:

    GA/60 differences for Eberle:

    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN 0.56
    HALL, TAYLOR 0.31
    GAGNER, SAM -1.19
    HORCOFF, SHAWN -0.75
    POULIOT, BENOIT -0.76
    SMYTH, RYAN 0.46
    YAKUPOV, NAIL -2.52
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS -0.57
    PERRON, DAVID 0.44
    COGLIANO, ANDREW -1.17
    JONES, RYAN -0.31
    ARCOBELLO, MARK -0.87
    HARTIKAINEN, TEEMU 0.74
    PURCELL, TEDDY -1.06
    GORDON, BOYD 0.43
    LANDER, ANTON -0.74

    Definielty more of a mixed bag here for Eberle on the other side of the puck.

    Good effect on Hall and RNH, but past that its not good.

  139. Woodguy says:

    Last, but not least, the net effect each player has on their most common forward line mates on total GF/60 – GA/60

    This boils it down to “what you create – what you give up”

    Yak:

    GAGNER, SAM -0.01
    ROY, DEREK -1.15
    PURCELL, TEDDY -0.48
    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN -2.97
    POULIOT, BENOIT -1.4
    EBERLE, JORDAN -3.74
    ARCOBELLO, MARK -0.44
    PERRON, DAVID 0.83
    HEMSKY, ALES -1.15
    HALL, TAYLOR 0.53
    DRAISAITL, LEON -3.84
    LETESTU, MARK -0.81
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS 0.87
    LANDER, ANTON 0.09
    MCDAVID, CONNOR 0.94
    SMYTH, RYAN -0.25
    HORCOFF, SHAWN 3.86

    Again we see the same results. Decent with Gagner (no effect, so as good as Gagner’s other mates)

    Horrible with RNH, Eberle, Saddle, etc.

    Slight drag on most others

    Good with Hall and McDavid.

  140. Woodguy says:

    And Eberle’s net effect:

    NUGENT-HOPKINS, RYAN 1.34
    HALL, TAYLOR 1.12
    GAGNER, SAM -0.22
    HORCOFF, SHAWN -0.16
    POULIOT, BENOIT -0.12
    SMYTH, RYAN 2.87
    YAKUPOV, NAIL -2.6
    PAAJARVI, MAGNUS 0.01
    PERRON, DAVID 0.46
    COGLIANO, ANDREW -1.55
    JONES, RYAN -0.15
    ARCOBELLO, MARK 0.23
    HARTIKAINEN, TEEMU 2.47
    PURCELL, TEDDY -1.93
    LARSEN, PHILIP -0.37
    GORDON, BOYD 1.23
    LANDER, ANTON 0.46

    Good with Hall and RNH.

    Only a big drag on players outside the org for a long period of time (Cogs, Purcell who’s team’s GA/60 were a world away from the Oilers)

    A drag on Yak, (who knew?)

    Overall a positive contributor

  141. Woodguy says:

    And this concludes this episode of:

    WALL OF DATA

    by Woodguy

    Thanks for tuning in.

  142. knighttown says:

    Yak doesn’t do much for me and honestly, never has. I never quite got where the offense was going to come from. Hockey IQ is below average and the result is that he’s rarely in the right place and has trouble making the correct read when the puck is on his stick unless he can see the play right in front of him.

    But here’s why I don’t lose sleep over Yakupov…

    1. That draft class sucks anyway. Of the people being considered at 1OV, none really jump out at me as being huge difference makers. Gally, Murray? Eh…maybe better than Yak but they aren’t 1OVs either. Sure there are a couple of nice defensmen like Rielly, Lindholm and Trouba but they weren’t in the conversation and so it’s unfair to say we should have picked Trouba.

    But more importantly…

    2. Here’s the list of 1OV’s salary cap hits on their SECOND contract:
    -Ovechkin $9,500,000
    -Crosby $8,750,000
    -Nash $7,800,000
    -Stamkos $7,500,000
    -Kane $6,300,000
    -Hall $6,000,000
    -Nuge $6,000,000
    -Tavares $5,500,000
    -Fleury $5,000,000
    -E. Johnson $3,750,000
    -Yakupov $2,500,000

    Johnson was a generation ago when second contracts were major hardball so Yak gets paid about 1/3 of what his comparables got coming out of their ELC.

    Props to both Igor and Yak for understanding what his client is and more importantly, isn’t. He’s a first overall pick in a year without a real first overall pick. Can you imagine if he had demanded Hall/Nuge money?

    We need to start looking at Yak like Jason Zucker. He’s a high energy guy that can play up and down the lineup and be featured on the second power play.

    I’ve yelled from the rooftops that playing 3rd/4th line is a blessing not a curse. Sure he’s playing with Letestu and Kassian and Hendricks and Korpse but he’s playing against Byron Fraise, Nick Spaling and Bobby Farnham. NAIL YAKUPOV playing with real NHLers should be enough to push the play against this type of fodder.

    Breaking it down to a minor hockey level. My kid is a first year Atom player and plays AA (the top level in NS). He does fine out there but as a first year he struggles a bit. If he played B instead he’d have way worse linemates but of course the expectation would be for him to produce more. Why isn’t this the same thing? Every shift is a separate game. Yak is playing Atom B and he’s a true AA talent (top 6er) he should be ripping it up as long as he has real NHLers. He frigging shouldn’t need Taylor Hall AND to play Atom B.

    So tonight he plays with Korpse and Hendricks. These are bonafide NHLers regardless of what people think of Korpse. They’ll play 4th line against Thorburn, Copp and Burmistrov. That’s actually quite similar with Burmistrov the skilled, top-10 drafted guy. No one is asking him to score 6 but shouldn’t they have a good shot at winning their matchup?

    I’d rather that than have him Ladd-Little-Wheeler.

  143. flyfish1168 says:

    schultz supposedly has the tools to play top pairing D. Makes mistakes all over the ice but yet coaches keep sending him out with top line minutes. Yak has tools to be top line winger but yet coaches seem to not play him with top line players and minutes.

    I like to see Jordan play bottom 6 for a bit (not likely to happen) I truly believe he would not be able to carry the play. i believe only Taylor and Conner are the only players truly able to carry the play on this team. JMHO

  144. knighttown says:

    knighttown:
    Yak doesn’t do much for me and honestly, never has.I never quite got where the offense was going to come from.Hockey IQ is below average and the result is that he’s rarely in the right place and has trouble making the correct read when the puck is on his stick unless he can see the play right in front of him.

    And just cause I’m causing shit, I have the same worries about Darnell Nurse. Every rush ends up in the corner. I remember a 3-on-3 shift when he and Nuge and Ebs dominated. He ended up in the corner with his back to the play and the other team was exhausted cause NUge-Ebs had done their thing. He had outlets everywhere but just couldn’t make the right read and passed it directly onto the opponents stick.

    Don’t get me wrong, Nurse can be one heck of a player without ever scoring a point but I don’t see him turning his spectacular physical gifts into big offensive production. I see Erik Johnson and Joni PItkanen, two other gifted physical specimans without the elite hockey IQ, as his top-top upside and Jack Johnson as a more reasonable bet. Certainly not Chris Pronger.

  145. hunter1909 says:

    Seeing them get slaughtered(Montreal+NYI) after RNH went down probably finished the season for me.

    Even McDavid’s 5 points barely registered, since the rest of the team was pretty bad at playing hockey.

    Chiarelli must be wondering wtf he’s been sold via Lowe+MacT – given the disaster that’s been every player they procured outside the top 25 of the draft. Thankfully, he’s been prudent enough to ignore the Lowetide poster’s chorus – that is, throwing away assets in desperation of competing with essentially the same team as presently constituted.

    Add two more top 4 defencemen, Chiarelli. Forget about counting the chickens that make up the current roster; players like Justin Schultz.

  146. northof51 says:

    Timely that Knighttown just weighed in – Yak’s struggles seem to be a product of how dam effective the NHL is at neutralizing his skill set. Yak doesn’t have Hall’s reckless speed, nor Eberle’s deft touch around the net, nor RNH’s vision, nor (can’t think of a current Oiler with this skill) Smyth’s get-to-the-front-of-the-net-at-all-costs determination.

    He seems to be missing something at the NHL level, and it certainly isn’t just skilled line mates. If I were TMac, I’d be sitting down Yak for a few days to watch Smytty highlights.

    Edit: I’m going to sit myself down and watch Smytty highlights for a few days.

  147. Norman Greenbaum says:

    flyfish1168:
    schultz supposedly has the tools to play top pairing D. Makes mistakes all over the ice but yet coaches keep sending him out with top line minutes.Yak has tools to be top line winger but yet coaches seem to not play him with top line players and minutes.

    I like to see Jordan play bottom 6 for a bit (not likely to happen) I truly believe he would not be able to carry the play. i believe only Taylor and Conner are the only players truly able to carry the play on this team. JMHO

    Hey Fly, just to clear something up: Your litmus test for a good player is to run them bottom six (after they just scored a hattrick) to see if they can carry the play?

    To continue flogging the dead horse, Eberle is one of the most consistent point producers in the game. Yak is not, at least not yet. And if you believe this is because of Canadian kid privilege or Shawn Fucking Offensive Dynamo Horcoff, then I just don’t know what would convince you. :-)

  148. frjohnk says:

    Salary cap could be going down by $4M.
    http://oilersnation.com/2016/2/12/could-the-edmonton-oilers-survive-a-4mm-drop-in-the-salary-cap

    Yikes!

    That defense roster is not playoff worthy.

    But Yak at $2.5M would be a nice fit in the middle 6.

  149. Lowetide says:

    knighttown: And just cause I’m causing shit, I have the same worries about Darnell Nurse.Every rush ends up in the corner.I remember a 3-on-3 shift when he and Nuge and Ebs dominated.He ended up in the corner with his back to the play and the other team was exhausted cause NUge-Ebs had done their thing.He had outlets everywhere but just couldn’t make the right read and passed it directly onto the opponents stick.

    Don’t get me wrong, Nurse can be one heck of a player without ever scoring a point but I don’t see him turning his spectacular physical gifts into big offensive production.I see Erik Johnson and Joni PItkanen, two other gifted physical specimans without the elite hockey IQ, as his top-top upside and Jack Johnson as a more reasonable bet. Certainly not Chris Pronger.

    I don’t think many people felt he was going to be a 40-point a year defensemen. The numbers never suggested it.

  150. Norman Greenbaum says:

    knighttown,

    knighttown: And just cause I’m causing shit, I have the same worries about Darnell Nurse.Every rush ends up in the corner.I remember a 3-on-3 shift when he and Nuge and Ebs dominated.He ended up in the corner with his back to the play and the other team was exhausted cause NUge-Ebs had done their thing.He had outlets everywhere but just couldn’t make the right read and passed it directly onto the opponents stick.

    Don’t get me wrong, Nurse can be one heck of a player without ever scoring a point but I don’t see him turning his spectacular physical gifts into big offensive production.I see Erik Johnson and Joni PItkanen, two other gifted physical specimans without the elite hockey IQ, as his top-top upside and Jack Johnson as a more reasonable bet. Certainly not Chris Pronger.

    This is where we need G and his awesome data.

    Because I remember two or three rushes where Nurse went in on the goalie and nearly scored. I suspect the truth is between the two of our points of view!

    It is way too early to make the call on Nurse. His rookie mistakes are there on national broadcasts for all to see. He is here because sadly, as flawed and inexperienced as he is, he’s better than the rest of the prospects and failures at the farm.

  151. Woodguy says:

    knighttown,

    So tonight he plays with Korpse and Hendricks. These are bonafide NHLers regardless of what people think of Korpse.

    I’m not concerned with what people think about Korpse.

    I’m concerned with the data of his actual results: http://oilersnation.com/2016/2/13/the-korpikoski-catastrophe

    Worst (or close) NHL player.

    Not sure you can call that Bona Fide.

  152. frjohnk says:

    Norman Greenbaum,

    There is a segment of the Oiler fans population who believe Eberle is part of a soft rotten core.

    Another segment who believes that Eberle has stolen precious top line minutes from Yak. And this is Eberle’s fault and he should play on the bottom of the roster.

    There is another segment who see Eberle as an elite point producer over the last 5 years and has always been part of the solution. 100% of this production was without a top pairing Dman. 98% was without McDavid.

    Before they were even put together, I thought McDavid and Eberle would be a fantastic match. These two are the smartest skilled players we have, only made sense to put them together. I’m not surprised by the results.

    For the majority of the year, Hall and Draisaitl have been a top 5 duo, maybe better.

    Early days, but McDavid and Eberle could be the best in the league.

    I don’t see why some people have to make it a Eberle vs Yak thing.
    Both are Oilers.
    Cheer for both.
    If people can not cheer for one without bashing the other, maybe they are not true Oiler fans.

  153. theres oil in virginia says:

    frjohnk,

    Very well said.

  154. Norman Greenbaum says:

    frjohnk,

    I agree 100%.

    You have to have very good complementary players. As Todd said, Connor can’t ( or shouldn’t) do it all. Very good complementary players get paid. Ask Corey Perry and Chris Mr Olympics Kunitz.

  155. DBO says:

    Couple points from last few games.
    – Korpikoski is not good. He has some physical skills to like, but not a good hockey player (see Oilersnation for good post on him)
    – Hendricks is a much better winger then centre. Workhorse and big part of this team being miscast aka Ryan Smyrh at centre all those years ago.
    – Yak gets no love with skill, so run him on a new kid line and let Yak be Yak with limited 5 on 5 and PP time.
    – Set Lander free!

    After they deal Purcell, and hopefully Korpse, I hope for these lines (I have accepted McClellan will run 2 scoring, one traditional checking and a limited 4th line, no Unicorns)

    Hall-Nuge-Drai
    Pou-McD-Eberle
    Hendricks-Letestu-Pakarinen
    Kassian-Lander-Yak

  156. Woodguy says:

    frjohnk,

    Good Ol’ Padre with his calm common sense.

    No wonder you wear a robe full time.

  157. flyfish1168 says:

    frjohnk:
    Norman Greenbaum,

    There is a segment of the Oiler fans population who believe Eberle is part of a soft rotten core.

    Another segment who believes that Eberle has stolen precious top line minutes from Yak.And this is Eberle’s fault and he should play on the bottom of the roster.

    There is another segment who see Eberle as an elite point producer over the last 5 years and has always been part of the solution.100% of this production was without a top pairing Dman.98% was without McDavid.

    Before they were even put together, I thought McDavid and Eberle would be a fantastic match.These two are the smartest skilled players we have, only made sense to put them together.I’m not surprised by the results.

    For the majority of the year, Hall and Draisaitl have been a top 5 duo, maybe better.

    Early days, but McDavid and Eberle could be the best in the league.

    I don’t see why some people have to make it a Eberle vs Yak thing.
    Both are Oilers.
    Cheer for both.
    If people can not cheer for one without bashing the other, maybe they are not true Oiler fans.

    Well put. I have said all along, they are both Oilers embrace both. I have an Eberle jersey. But there are people here on this site that do not and has picked side.

    I just like to see Nail get a constant centerman that he can work with. It doesn’t have to be top dog but one that understands his game and can guide him. He has the tools to be a good player.

  158. Pouzar says:

    Woodguy:
    And this concludes this episode of:

    WALL OF DATA

    by Woodguy

    Thanks for tuning in.

    Thank you for that.

  159. Pouzar says:

    frjohnk:
    Norman Greenbaum,

    There is a segment of the Oiler fans population who believe Eberle is part of a soft rotten core.

    Another segment who believes that Eberle has stolen precious top line minutes from Yak.And this is Eberle’s fault and he should play on the bottom of the roster.

    There is another segment who see Eberle as an elite point producer over the last 5 years and has always been part of the solution.100% of this production was without a top pairing Dman.98% was without McDavid.

    Before they were even put together, I thought McDavid and Eberle would be a fantastic match.These two are the smartest skilled players we have, only made sense to put them together.I’m not surprised by the results.

    For the majority of the year, Hall and Draisaitl have been a top 5 duo, maybe better.

    Early days, but McDavid and Eberle could be the best in the league.

    I don’t see why some people have to make it a Eberle vs Yak thing.
    Both are Oilers.
    Cheer for both.
    If people can not cheer for one without bashing the other, maybe they are not true Oiler fans.

    On the money again.

  160. Fog of Warts says:

    DRFNsuperstar: Listening to media call Edmonton a rebuild I thought to myself “we can’t even be called a rebuild anymore. Just a shitty hockey team, it’s been 10 years”

    I was going through some old boxes this morning, and found some notebooks stretching back a decade or so. This was at the height of my sleep problems.

    It’s pretty much a miracle that I didn’t say to myself sometime around spring 2006: “It’s been ten years. I can’t even call myself tenacious any more. I’m just a shitty person.”

    Actually, I lie.

    There was such a voice. I tried not to listen.

    Then a miracle happened (therapy #96 actually began to work). Fuck you, stupid voice from the past.

    What’s a perennial loser to do at this point? Flush the toilet on their future, or flush the toilet on their past?

    I don’t think calling yourself “shitty” nudges the fudge lever in the right direction.

  161. GCW_69 says:

    Doesn’t it really come down to which you like better?

    Hall – Nuge – Draisaitl

    Pouliot – McDavid – Yak

    or

    Hall – Draisaitl – Yak/other

    Pouliot – McDavid – Eberle

    If McDavid I is the guy you want to maximize, I think you go with option two and find a new centre to replace Nuge.

    If you want to balance the two lines, you keep Nuge, settle for yak on McDavid’s wing and move on.

  162. BONVIE says:

    GCW_69:
    Doesn’t it really come down to which you like better?

    Hall – Nuge – Draisaitl

    Pouliot – McDavid – Yak

    or

    Hall – Draisaitl – Yak/other

    Pouliot – McDavid – Eberle

    If McDavid I is the guy you want to maximize, I think you go with option two and find a new centre to replace Nuge.

    If you want to balance the two lines, you keep Nuge, settle for yak on McDavid’s wing and move on.

    I really don’t think yak is ready for first line duties.

  163. Edmonton blog roundup: Feb. 16, 2016 – Seen and Heard in Edmonton says:

    […] wishes the Oilers could love Nail Yakupov as much as he […]

  164. Moving on from Nail Yakupov – Striking Oil in Ontario says:

    […] consider the work done by Lowetide, and Johnathan Willis with Oilers Nation, and the Cult of Hockey, on how Letestu and Yakupov […]

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