TIRED OF WAITING FOR YOU

One of the decisions Peter Chiarelli made early in the season—the Darnell Nurse recall—saw Griffin Reinhart sent to the minors. Now, Reinhart’s demotion may have had a lot to do with Leon Draisaitl’s emergence (and bonus dollars on the books for those two men, and Connor McDavid), but it turned out just that way. In last night’s game, Griffin Reinhart played far better than Darnell Nurse—and maybe, just maybe, that means AHL time for Nurse next season and a similar, Reinhart-route to the NHL. Those minor league games have value.

DAY AFTER DAY, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in October 2014: 4-5-1
  • Oilers in October 2015: 4-8-0
  • Oilers in November 2014: 2-9-3
  • Oilers in November 2015: 4-7-2
  • Oilers in December 2014: 2-8-4
  • Oilers in December 2015: 7-6-1
  • Oilers in January 2015: 5-7-1
  • Oilers in January 2016: 4-5-2
  • Oilers in February 2015: 5-6-1
  • Oilers in February 2016: 4-8-2
  • Oilers in March 2015: 5-6-3
  • Oilers in March 2016: 6-6-0
  • Oilers after 76 in 2014-15: 23-40-13, 59 points (-68 GD)
  • Oilers after 76 in 2015-16: 29-40-7, 65 points (-40 GD)

Oilers got hammered by a barrage of hits (some illegal, surely) in the third period before Zack Kassian, Reinhart and a few others put the boots to various Coyotes. Now we’re on to California and wrap up a good lottery position. I liked the team last night, truth to tell. Strike that last remark.

INDIVIDUAL HIGH-DANGER SCORING CHANCES

  • Two: Connor McDavid, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
  • One: Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, Andrej Sekera, Griffin Reinhart, Zack Kassian, Leon Draisaitl
  • Oilers tied the IH-DSC battle 10-10.

OILERS DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

oilers blue nov 30

  • Reinhart—Oesterle looked good for much of the game—notice they did not see the Hanzal line as top opponent—and could have cashed a goal if luck had been on their side. Reinhart had two good chances, one glorious, and Oesterle played well and moved the puck creatively. He got crunched a time or two, and both men got walked by Tobias Rieder on a GA that was a lot about poor execution. Young defense. Who knew? Oesterle caught my eye on the power play, got those pucks through.
  • Sekera—Fayne played the toughs and won the possession battle, and I saw them mostly good. Fayne had some quality defensive moments, Todd McLellan used him like a 5 and I suspect that is what he will be next season should he return. I think they was one of the four best blue last night and it wasn’t close. Sekera got an assist on the PP, but he started wobbly with the passing and had some very confusing moments with the biscuit. A rare vapor-lock evening at times, he got an assist and was half of the tough-minutes pairing. He was also 0-6 with Nurse.
  • Nurse—Clendening were not good, and I think it is probably reasonable to suggest the Oilers are not helping Nurse with more NHL time. He has been outplayed by Griffin Reinhart—a lesser prospect—for at least some games now and the season ending numbers are going to favor the Oil Kings defender. Nurse was 2-10 against Hanzal, 1-7 against Vermette, and we’re on the California where the centers are giant redwoods. I remain a big fan of Nurse’s future, but his present is tough to watch, and he should be in Bakersfield.
  • We know prospects don’t develop in a straight line, so let’s agree we could be talking about these two men (Nurse, Reinhart) in a completely different way a year from now. One thing I will say: We can (once again) see the reason Chiarelli added a 21-year old defender for the picks. He needed more in the young pro cluster, and the recent performances for the top 10 picks (D division) confirms the wisdom of the move (if not the value of the trade).

OILERS CENTERS, LAST NIGHT

oil c nov 30

WINGERS, LAST NIGHT

oilers f nov 30

  • Hall—Nuge—Draisaitl had some good things going on until the injury to RNH. The trio totaled four high-danger scoring chances, and Hall will probably have that late chance running through his mind all day. I thought all three men played hard, not as smart as you would hope. They did face the Hanzal line, but also the Stone pairing—there was an opportunity there, to my eye. Nuge injury contributed, but opportunity missed. Nuge didn’t take a faceoff, Leon was 50 percent. Oh, one more thing: If you are the one calling Taylor Hall a cancer, please leave the forum. You are not welcome here.
  • Pakarinen—McDavid—Eberle did some great things. McDavid was 17-7 against OEL, he cashed two points (both on PP) and had five of the line’s 10 shots. Eberle scored the first goal, and the trio had three high-danger scoring chances. McDavid was 35 percent on the dot.
  • Hendricks—Lander—Kassian played well, posting some good possession numbers. Lander did not win the faceoff battle (38 percent) and curiously did not play much on the PK (25 seconds). Every time his skates cut ice as an Oiler now, you have to wonder if this is the last game he will play with the club. Hendricks worked like a bugger, led Oiler forwards in PK time and gave max effort. Zack Kassian answered a six-pack of Coyotes hits with a substantial collision of his own.

If the Ottawa Senators are willing to do business (as their owner has suggested) then Peter Chiarelli needs to get on that phone and keep talking until something gets done. I cannot believe they would trade Erik Karlsson, so let’s not even entertain the thought. Up front? Mika Zibanejad, Mark Stone, Curtis Lazar, hell I have always liked Zack Smith! Wonderful news for NHL teams if Ottawa is going to tear it down. Get in there, Pete!

In the olden days, they would say a scorer (or a batter) was ‘snake-bit’ when enduring a run like Taylor Hall has in the back half of the season. Part of this is the power play—the big train doesn’t run through Hall anymore, the scoring train runs from McDavid now—and part of it is surely the slumping (and loss of that extra step) by Leon Draisaitl. The verbal now has Hall being a negative, a problem, and that my friends is exactly as crazy as it sounds. Whenever this conversation comes up, I like to list Pete Rose’s batting averages over a 10-year period beginning when he was 27:

  • .335
  • .348
  • .316
  • .304
  • .307
  • .338
  • .284
  • .317
  • .323
  • .311

10 WAYS TO IMPROVE NEXT SEASON

  1. Shoot the guy who approved the schedule. What a mess. Insanity personified. Give the guy the same sporting chance he gave the Oilers: Six bullets in the chamber, good luck!
  2. Better health. Admittedly this is a lot about lighting candles and hoping for average luck, but good lord this has been a terrible year for the maladies.
  3. Four actual defensemen. Opening night 2005-06, the Oilers pairings were Pronger-Staios; Ulanov-Smith; Cross-Bergeron. Quality, experience, range of skills. The following opening night?  Tjarnqvist-Smith; Smid-Staios; Bergeron-Greene. The Oilers start the conversation on defense every fall from a position of weakness, and that is before the injuries. It is one reason why trading Mark Fayne is madness in my opinion. Experience has value.
  4. Fix the power play. Fix the power play.
  5. Find a righty shooter to go with Eberle and counter all those lefties.
  6. Start the season with one rookie.
  7. Pray for Oscar.
  8. Don’t do anything crazy like trade Taylor Hall.
  9. Do NOT fire the damned coach.
  10. If you are going to trade with Columbus, you better be right.

stanwyck

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy day, TSN1260, 10am. Scheduled to appear:

  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey. Wednesdays with Bruce are always enjoyable, even when the Oilers have lost the night before.
  • Scott Zerr, Oilers Nation. Condors played last night, some emerging stories from California.
  • Callum Fraser, Silver Seven Sens. Ottawa’s owner said some unusual things, what does it mean?

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

written by

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

161 Responses to "TIRED OF WAITING FOR YOU"

  1. Pajamah says:

    2 for 4 and Savard

    4 for Hamonic

    Sign PTO checking centre or keep Lander

    Trade dead weight for bullets in 2017 draft.

    I take credit for none of these solutions, however, I subscribe to them all.

  2. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Hall’s had a horrible second half.
    I am NOT in the trade him camp but it’s only fair to ask some questions about why he hasn’t delivered. There are many excuses we can come up with, but it also seems like sometimes it’s hard to ever question or criticize his play without having some people jump on you. Still love the player but he should be able to produce at a better clip than he has. It has been a horrible slump.

  3. jonrmcleod says:

    I went to bed after the first period. Didn’t know RNH got injured. Any additional info?

  4. russ99 says:

    Nurse is at a disadvantage because he always gets our worst defensemen on the ice as his partner, and he needs more support.

    Would love to see Nurse – Fayne before the year is out to get a better read on both players.

    He may not be a prototypical puck mover, but Nurse has a shot and can make things happen in the O-zone. His partner is usually given that role, unfortunately and he gets the tough sledding.

  5. Lowetide says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    Hall’s had a horrible second half.
    I am NOT in the trade him camp but it’s only fair to ask some questions about why he hasn’t delivered. There are many excuses we can come up with, but it also seems like sometimes it’s hard to ever question or criticize his play without having some people jump on you. Still love the player but he should be able to produce at a better clip than he has. It has been a horrible slump.

    No problem at all with discussion about Hall’s second half. When a player slumps, I always ask:

    1. Is he 40 years old?
    2. Is he injured?
    3. Are his linemates, new, lesser, injured?
    4. Has his usage changed?

    The answer is in there.

  6. Lowetide says:

    russ99:
    Nurse is at a disadvantage because he always gets our worst defensemen on the ice as his partner, and he needs more support.

    Would love to see Nurse – Fayne before the year is out to get a better read on both players.

    He gets the worst defenseman because he is third pairing. You cant give him Sekera, he will get fed. We saw it.

  7. russ99 says:

    Lowetide,

    Another reason why McLellan’s 2-skill guys, 1 heavy or cycler may not be the best way to go.

  8. Woodguy says:

    BOTTOM 5 NHL TEAMS AND TIES VIA GAMES (PTS%)

    TIES BROKEN USING ROW

    30TH PLACE TEAM ALWAYS = 0

    30 – EDM – 0
    29 – TOR +2
    28 – WPG +4
    27 – VAN +5
    26 – CBJ +6
    25 – CGY + 6

    “and the Gords said unto them “Start the Season without 4 Actual NHL Defensemen and there will be much weeping and gnashing of teeth”. The Oilers did not heed the Gords and not only was there weeping and gnashing of teeth, but pestilence and removal of leg muscle to punish their hubris” – BecauseOilers 25:12-17

  9. Bruce McCurdy says:

    jonrmcleod:
    I went to bed after the first period. Didn’t know RNH got injured. Any additional info?

    Murphy drilled him on the button with a shoulder check early in the second. Went to the quiet room, didn’t return.

  10. Aitch says:

    One thing that I’ve noticed with Hall (and haven’t bothered to back up with research) is that he seems to be on the ice for goals getting scored but he’s not getting one of the three touches before the puck goes in. There’s been a few goals where his play has been the catalyst for the goal (or the attack leading to the goal) but he doesn’t end up with a counting number for the work. As you say, part of that is that McDavid is now getting more touches, but a part of it is just bad luck I think too. Like PDO, I suspect this will even out in the long run. (Even if the long run isn’t this season.)

    Ever since August 1988, I won’t say “Don’t trade” about anyone, but the list of players I would trade Hall for is pretty damn short. The guy in Ottawa and a certain bearded mountain man out of San Jose might be the only names on the list.

  11. Spydyr says:

    Trade any assets not named Connor for Karlsson.

  12. Pajamah says:

    Woodguy:

    “and the Gords said unto them “Start the Season without 4 Actual NHL Defensemen and there will be much weeping and gnashing of teeth”.The Oilers did not heed the Gords and not only was there weeping and gnashing of teeth, but pestilence and removal of leg muscle to punish their hubris” –BecauseOilers 25:12-17

    This needs to be twittered at @VisuallyBetter and photoshopped into McLellan as Moses. The Chuck Heston version.

  13. Pajamah says:

    Aitch:
    One thing that I’ve noticed with Hall (and haven’t bothered to back up with research) is that he seems to be on the ice for goals getting scored but he’s not getting one of the three touches before the puck goes in. There’s been a few goals where his play has been the catalyst for the goal (or the attack leading to the goal) but he doesn’t end up with a counting number for the work. As you say, part of that is that McDavid is now getting more touches, but a part of it is just bad luck I think too. Like PDO, I suspect this will even out in the long run. (Even if the long run isn’t this season.)

    Ever since August 1988, I won’t say “Don’t trade” about anyone, but the list of players I would trade Hall for is pretty damn short. The guy in Ottawaand a certain bearded mountain man out of San Jose might be the only names on the list.

    Burns is not enough of a return for Hall. Not even close.

  14. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Woodguy:
    BOTTOM 5 NHL TEAMS AND TIES VIA GAMES (PTS%)

    TIES BROKEN USING ROW

    30TH PLACE TEAM ALWAYS = 0

    30 – EDM – 0
    29 – TOR +2
    28 – WPG +4
    27 – VAN +5
    26 – CBJ +6
    25 – CGY + 6

    “and the Gords said unto them “Start the Season without 4 Actual NHL Defensemen and there will be much weeping and gnashing of teeth”.The Oilers did not heed the Gords and not only was there weeping and gnashing of teeth, but pestilence and removal of leg muscle to punish their hubris” –BecauseOilers 25:12-17

    And dead last in the league in the GD again.
    Very tough year. I still wonder what might have been had Klef and Nuge not gotten hurt. I didn’t think playoffs but thought there would be 10 more points and some progress to talk about at this point.

    Limping to the finish line now.

  15. Woogie63 says:

    6. Start the season with one rookie ….. “WHO HAS PLAYED ON THE CONDORS IN 2015/16″
    7. Pray for Oscar.
    8. Don’t do anything crazy like trade Taylor Hall.
    9. Do NOT fire the damned coach.

    LT I have been thinking along these lines, every year there is so much change (or an impending firing on the horizon). I vote for more subtle change next season, the issue IMO is a puck moving dman and that needs to be addressed.

    I wonder what a second year with this coaching staff, system of play, less injuries to important players and the tide raising our boat looks like.

    Getting this group to play better is within our means, getting a player off of WG list (for example) is going to take will ‘co-operation” from another team.

  16. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Pajamah: Burns is not enough of a return for Hall. Not even close.

    A 27-year old, signed Burns would be, but you’re right, 31 years old and only one year til UFA is not even close.

  17. Woodguy says:

    Pajamah: This needs to be twittered at @VisuallyBetter and photoshopped into McLellan as Moses. The Chuck Heston version.

    LT as Moses.

    He keeps telling them not to pray to the golden calf, but they never listen.

  18. Little Poteet says:

    Lowetide,

    Lowetide: No problem at all with discussion about Hall’s second half. When a player slumps, I always ask:

    1. Is he 40 years old?
    2. Is he injured?
    3. Are his linemates, new, lesser, injured?
    4. Has his usage changed?

    The answer is in there.

    I think we were all quick to peg Teddy Purcell as a replaceable part on that line that had so much success. I know he was moved off that line briefly to start experimenting for potential solutions once the inevitable trade came, but for the most part Hall – Leon – Purcell had a lot of success. Veteran actual everyday NHL players have value and can contribute to success. I love Pak as a player but when it comes to plays that contribute to scoring, he’s not even close to Purcell.
    Hall having to play with essentially 2 rookies while also needing to be the one to pick up the puck in his own zone and carry it to the offensive zone because few dmen on this team can hit him with a pass flying through the neutral zone probably has contributed to this slump. Hall hasn’t really played with a real veteran player with some offensive smarts since maybe Horcoff

  19. leadfarmer says:

    I hate the fact they employed Hunt in the AHL for all these years and gave all that pp time to a guy that will never play in the NHL. Those are very precious minutes that should be used for prospects that have a chance even if you dont project them to be a pp quarterback. You never know when you will need them to step in, and even if you don’t, skills like getting the puck to the net, pass distribution, keeping the puck in are a valuable skill set for every defenseman and you don’t get to practice them more than on the pp.

    As for Nurse I hope throwing him into the deep end this season doesn’t have any long term ill effects on his development. The Detroit model sounds great and all but who really wants to wait for their prospects to develop, I mean who really wants to wait until christmas morning to open up their christmas presents.

  20. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Aitch:
    One thing that I’ve noticed with Hall (and haven’t bothered to back up with research) is that he seems to be on the ice for goals getting scored but he’s not getting one of the three touches before the puck goes in. There’s been a few goals where his play has been the catalyst for the goal (or the attack leading to the goal) but he doesn’t end up with a counting number for the work. As you say, part of that is that McDavid is now getting more touches, but a part of it is just bad luck I think too. Like PDO, I suspect this will even out in the long run. (Even if the long run isn’t this season.)

    Ever since August 1988, I won’t say “Don’t trade” about anyone, but the list of players I would trade Hall for is pretty damn short. The guy in Ottawaand a certain bearded mountain man out of San Jose might be the only names on the list.

    This is the reverse of two years ago, when Hall scored more points than he was on the ice for, a nearly impossible feat. His individual points percentage was over 100% cuz he picked up a couple of cheap points on line changes & otherwsie had one of the last three touches on virtually every goal his line scored. Being the best player on his line helped, but he did have a high number of second assists. it was kinda like Eberle’s 76-point year; he played well but also got some bounces along the way.

    This year he started out something like that, but has now crashed to 8-11-19 in his last 41 games, fully a half season at a desultory 38-point pace. Just one multi-point game in that span, along with 16 1-point nights & 24 zeroes. Lots of bad luck in there but some poor finishing is a part of it. Saw it again in the third period last night when he missed the yawning 4 by 6 from about 10 feet away after Leon served it to him on a platter.

  21. stener says:

    Last night was the first time I’ve watched since about the deadline.

    Clendenning didn’t pass the eye-test last night. Saw him bad plenty and the numbers back it up. I’m not a fan, and I hope he isn’t back next season. Nurse has his work cut out for him, but I’m sure he’ll apply himself with rigor over the course of the summer.

    Watching Rieder hurts more every time I see him. Kale goddamn Kessy.

    Also, I feel awful for the Nuge.

    This season has been a dog’s breakfast.

  22. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: This is the reverse of two years ago, when Hall scored more points than he was on the ice for, a nearly impossible feat. His individual points percentage was over 100% cuz he picked up amcouple of cheap points on line changes & otherwsie had one of the last three points on virtually every goal his line scored. Being the best player on his line helped, but he did have a high number of second assists. it was kinda like Eberle’s 76-point year; he played well but also got some bounces along the way.

    This year he started out something like that, but has now crashed to 8-11-19 in his last 41 games, fully a half season at a desultory 38-point pace. Just one multi-point game in that span, along with 16 1-point nights & 24 zeroes. Lots of bad luck in there but some poor finishing is a part of it. Saw it again in the third period last night when he missed the yawning 4 by 6 from about 10 feet away after Leon served it to him on a platter.

    He’s still 14th in the NHL in IPP with an 83%.

    That’s more of a “normal” elite number.

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ratings.php?disp=1&db=201516&sit=5v5&pos=skaters&minutes=500&teamid=0&type=individual&sort=IPP&sortdir=DESC

  23. Bruce McCurdy says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: And dead last in the league in the GD again.
    Very tough year. I still wonder what might have been had Klef and Nuge not gotten hurt. I didn’t think playoffs but thought there would be 10 more points and some progress to talk about at this point.

    Limping to the finish line now.

    Losing that McDavid guy for half the season didn’t help either.

  24. Woodguy says:

    “HEY TAYLOR, SCORE AS MUCH AS BENN OR YOU SUCK!!. YOU ALSO HAVE TO DO IT WITH A 20 YEAR OLD ROOKIE AND VARIOUS PLUGS ON RW AND NOT SEGUIN AND SHARP”

  25. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    To start this year the bottom six forwards were a black hole and the goaltending was shaky. And then the goaltending got better and the blue line was exposed.

    A month ago some fans here were putting Brossoit’s name as the backup in ink. We are seeing that it’s too soon to do that and he may need more time. Think he gets there, but he may not be ready yet.

    The blue needs addressing in a big way, still, of course.

    Shopping list:
    2 X top 4 D
    1 X backup goalie to push LB
    1 X right-handed legit, veteran forward to add to the mix and bump everyone else down. Call him “Bavid Dackes”
    Your mileage may vary.

    That should be the goal. Rather than more bottom six fodder.

  26. highgloveside says:

    Woodguy,

    Nurse needs to go to the AHL next season for 40 games and 40 nights so he won’t wander in the desert for 40 years before finding the promised land!

  27. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy: He’s still 10th in the NHL in IPP with an 83%.

    That’s more of a “normal” elite number.

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ratings.php?db=201516&sit=5v5&type=individual&teamid=0&pos=skaters&minutes=500&disp=1&sort=PCT&sortdir=DESC

    Inteesting that Hall is top 10 in the league (not sure where you set your points or TOI threshold) but still behind THREE teammates in McDavid, Draisaitl & Eberle. That’s impressive on the one hand but on the other, absolutely exposes Oilers’ lack of secondary &/or defence scoring.

  28. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Losing that McDavid guy for half the season didn’t help either.

    Well, of course, but the point I was trying to make was that even without McDavid this season should.have gone better and then when McDavid returned I expected a nice bump in play to finish this year. Instead it has been a horse that has been in need of being shot all the way to the finish

  29. Pretendergast says:

    Should Taylor be better? Yeah.

    Is he the problem? Cmon

  30. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Woodguy:
    “HEY TAYLOR, SCORE AS MUCH AS BENN OR YOU SUCK!!.YOU ALSO HAVE TO DO IT WITH A 20 YEAR OLD ROOKIE AND VARIOUS PLUGS ON RW AND NOT SEGUIN AND SHARP”

    Did anyone in particular say that? Not saying he should have 80 points but he has fallen way below production level you’d expect from him, even with plugs.
    Not looking to blame him or anything, just think that there’s more to it than Leon ran out of gas. Or there should be.

  31. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Pretendergast:
    Should Taylor be better? Yeah.

    Is he the problem? Cmon

    I must be missing something. Who is saying he is the problem other than a few crazies? And there are always crazies.

    Second half he wasn’t a positive contributor but he is still one of the better players.

  32. Ducey says:

    Wow, that’s harsh LT, not even a comment about Korpse – Letestu – Yak?

    I was screaming from the beginning of the year for Nurse to spend most of the season in the AHL. I got tired of arguing about it. Not going to tell you I told you so, but 🙂

    To give Nurse some slack, Reinhart has Oesterle to play with. If Grif isn’t sure what to do with the puck he finds Oesterle – who has to be in the picture next year (AHL call up). Jordan has been very good – maybe the best Oiler D recently.

    Nurse has Lord Denning – who is not good at bailing him out because he is under water himself. Nurse – Gryba likely would look a lot better on Nurse.

    Reinhart is starting to be a bastard out there. He definitely has a mean streak and is getting more physical. I like it.

    As much of a crappy year it has been – the emergence of some D – Davidson, Oesterle and now Reinhart has to be a positive.

  33. highgloveside says:

    One think I have noticed with Hall and Draisaitl over the last 20 or so games is that they seem to try to use each other too much and not include their linemate as they did with Purcel. I think they play better with a veteran RW that helps calm them down a bit. Kassian adds the size but doesn’t compliment them, Nuge and his composure can really help them out but we never got to see that chemistry develop. Its almost like Hall and Draisaitl think they need to do it all themselves when playing with an offensively inferior RW.

    I also think Draisaitl is wearing down in his first full season, which is typical after about 50 games. He still has his impressive speed, but mentally he is not as sharp as he was. Not his fault, it is expected and since he isn’t playing like a rookie people forget that.

  34. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I hear you.

    It would be nice if people recognized the difference between throwing Hall under the bus and acknowledging that his second half performance hasn’t been good enough.

    I mean I like Hall. Heck I have been suggesting he should be captain of this team. That said, a 38 point pace over the second half is bad for a player trying to convince the world he belongs in the elite player conversation, regardless of who he is playing with.

    Could his linemates be better? Of course!
    Should we have expected a PPG pace? Probably not.
    Is 38 close to good enough given his circumstances? Nope.

    And that’s OK. We can be critical of recent performance without suggesting we want him gone. We know what he can do. I believe he can get back there. Doesn’t mean I’m satisfied with his play this season.

  35. slopitch says:

    I refuse to believe Karlsson would be possible. Nuge, the #2 and Reinhart is the starting point. Id still do it. Having the top C and the top D in the game would allow us to fill the roster with 6’s and 7s that look like 9s and 10s.

    2 for 4 and Savard, 4 for Hamonic. I like this suggestion. Savard is underrated.

    Get Nurse 10 games in the AHL already. 10 games now is 10 games you dont have to do next year. Stop repeating the same mistakes oilers. FFS!

  36. Fortinbras says:

    Woodguy: LT as Moses.

    He keeps telling them not to pray to the golden calf, but they never listen.

    I hope for LT’s sake, it turns out better than for Moses. He never did see the land of Milk and Honey.

  37. Hockey Headlines: Oilers Lose Again; Big Changes Ahead for the Senators? says:

    […] loss. [Copper N Blue]. The Oilers have a lot of problems. Taylor Hall isn’t one of them. [Lowetide]. They also may not get defenceman Oscar Klefbom back this season. [Edmonton […]

  38. linkfromhyrule says:

    LT, THANK YOU. I get so sick of this Hall is a cancer BS. It’s an infuriatingly common perception, and when someone tells me that I have basically all I need to judge their hockey knowledge. No issue with questioning him, as he has undoubtedly underperformed in the second half.

    Our D last night was:
    Sekera-Fayne
    Reinhart-Oesterle
    Nurse-Clendenning

    That is a really good D for the Condors, not even close for the NHL. The AHL D outnumber the NHL D 2:1

    Apart from that, there are probably several reasons why Hall has underperformed in the second half of the season.

    1) Purcell traded. I think his loss has been understated for that line.
    2) Mostly ineffective players replacing Purcell, Hall still plays the best.. Much harder to do with poorer linemates.
    3) Riding out another waste of his prime season in the NHL. You think this season has been hard on us? Imagine how it must feel for him. It must be tough to give your all for an exercise in futility.
    4) Leon’s (likely) injury, though he has looked better lately.

  39. linkfromhyrule says:

    highgloveside: Kassian adds the size but doesn’t compliment them

    I thought Kassian looked good on their line in the 3rd last night. If only he could be consistent…

  40. RexLibris says:

    Fortinbras: I hope for LT’s sake, it turns out better than for Moses. He never did see the land of Milk and Honey.

    I didn’t want to bring that up, but yeah, nobody wants that.

    I think we all want LT to spill some of his whiskey on the carpet and scare the dog (and neighbours) again.

  41. dustrock says:

    Lowetide: No problem at all with discussion about Hall’s second half. When a player slumps, I always ask:

    1. Is he 40 years old?
    2. Is he injured?
    3. Are his linemates, new, lesser, injured?
    4. Has his usage changed?

    The answer is in there.

    5. Were the Oilers eliminated from the playoffs in February again? Come on guys, if you don’t think Hall is depressed and just playing out the season right now, I don’t know what to tell you. This is a highly competitive guy who was back to back Memorial Cup MVP. Fully expect if we’re Done in December again this winter he’ll be asking for a trade. And he’d be damn justified.

    Regarding Nurse, what about sending him down to Bakersfield to help their playoff chances? Nurse was struggling and the Oilers have been gonzo for a while now, but the Condors are fighting for 8th. You think Nurse couldn’t help them and help himself?

    I just don’t fraking get it anymore. These are very experienced coaches and GMs. What are they seeing in Nurse staying up that we’re not?

  42. Bruce McCurdy says:

    dustrock: 5. Were the Oilers eliminated from the playoffs in February again?Come on guys, if you don’t think Hall is depressed and just playing out the season right now, I don’t know what to tell you. This is a highly competitive guy who was back to back Memorial Cup MVP.Fully expect if we’re Done in December again this winter he’ll be asking for a trade. And he’d be damn justified.

    Regarding Nurse, what about sending him down to Bakersfield to help their playoff chances? Nurse was struggling and the Oilers have been gonzo for a while now, but the Condors are fighting for 8th. You think Nurse couldn’t help them and help himself?

    I just don’t fraking get it anymore. These are very experienced coaches and GMs. What are they seeing in Nurse staying up that we’re not?

    Send Nurse down now & the only option is Nikitin goes back in the line-up with nobody left in the press box. Maybe at such point one of Gryba/Pardy returns it can be considered.

  43. RexLibris says:

    I’ve been running an experiment where i review every Oilers game and count the number and severity of missed and made calls by the officials.

    For every Oilers game I’m also reviewing a control game to provide equal, non-partisan data.

    For two nights in a row now I’ve watched Flames games and just the thought of it now is making my eyes hurt.

    When I come back with the data, no matter how much it looks like unintelligible garbage, you’d all better damned well appreciate this! 😉

  44. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Send Nurse down now & the only option is Nikitin goes back in the line-up with nobody left in the press box. Maybe at such point one of Gryba/Pardy returns it can be considered.

    If they put Nikitin back in I wonder if the league would refuse to accept the Nurse demotion as it would give the Oilers’ an unfair competitive advantage…in the draft lottery.

  45. Pretendergast says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    The annual witch hunt is on, even from the not-so crazies desperate for solutions

    Some of them make sense in a scary way, but it frames Hall as a problem that will not improve itself.

    LT puts it much better than me with the Rose example, ill save the leave Hall alone banter for the next gameday thread when the hounds come back.

  46. RexLibris says:

    I’m encouraged to hear that Reinhart is playing well (haven’t watched the last two games – see above) and it bodes well for our development of others like Laleggia and eventually Bear and Jones.

    My expectation is that next fall we’ll see enough changes on the blueline that Nurse will start the year in the AHL, and if things go really well, Reinhart might join him, depending on the extent of Klefbom’s injury and subsequent rehabilitation.

  47. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    I think there is 0 chance of Nurse playing many, if any, games in the AHL next year. He played the whole year in the NHL, to send him down next year is an admission of fault of management… seems unlikely.

    Maybe, maybe, if we add a bunch of new NHL faces it could happen. I’m skeptical though.

  48. jm363561 says:

    Kassian adds the size but doesn’t compliment them

    linkfromhyrule: I thought Kassian looked good on their line in the 3rd last night. If only he could be consistent…

    You really would think the coaches would be able to get a player to say “Well done” to his line mates on a frequent and regular basis!

  49. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Pretendergast:
    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    The annual witch hunt is on, even from the not-so crazies desperate for solutions

    Some of them make sense in a scary way, but it frames Hall as a problem that will not improve itself.

    LT puts it much better than me with the Rose example, ill save the leave Hall alone banter for the next gameday thread when the hounds come back.

    Ah, thought Eberle had been chosen since Schultz departed. Didn’t realize it was Hall.

  50. rickithebear says:

    Last night our team got 20 shots in the kill zone. 33% above league average.

    After studying open hole shots it is apparent that
    -shooting at chest does not score
    -shooting at pads does not score
    – shooting high corner yields high miss rates.
    – shooting at perimeter which allows forward motion of blocker and glove.
    Results in higher open hole saves.

    – the best targeting area is under the blocker and glove; just above the pads.

    -Which requires an unnatural motion of drawing the glove and blocker down and in.

    -It eliminates the high miss rates of upper net targeting.
    Eliminating the potential for counter attack.

    -It forces the goalie to pick up the puck in a lower plane requiring a top down view.

    -If it hits the pads. the rebound control is greatly reduced.
    Potential for more high chance shots.

    -Worst case it gets saved. leading to OZ faceoffs.

    -with reduced miss rate and More OZ face offs.
    Much greater potential of OZ procession.

    -That area is best targeted with a controlled wrist shot.
    A quicker release shot that yields less blocked shots.

    -Next year that area will be much larger.

    Look were Kane ; Seguin target.

  51. mustang says:

    Little Poteet:
    Lowetide,

    I think we were all quick to peg Teddy Purcell as a replaceable part on that line that had so much success. I know he was moved off that line briefly to start experimenting for potential solutions once the inevitable trade came, but for the most part Hall – Leon – Purcell had a lot of success. Veteran actual everyday NHL players have value and can contribute to success.I love Pak as a player but when it comes to plays that contribute to scoring, he’s not even close to Purcell.
    Hall having to play with essentially 2 rookies while also needing to be the one to pick up the puck in his own zone and carry it to theoffensive zone because few dmen on this team can hit him with a pass flying through the neutral zone probably has contributed to this slump.Hall hasn’t really played with a real veteran player with some offensive smarts since maybe Horcoff

    I think you nailed it, Teddy was a huge part of that line having success, Teddy is a smart skilled player who complimented Hall perfectly. He might be missing his buddy right now. Whenever Taylor did a interview he always mentioned Teddy as a big part of the line and gave a lot of credit to him and lines success.

    Hopefully PC remembers this and gets Teddy back for 2M

  52. jm363561 says:

    linkfromhyrule:
    LT, THANK YOU. I get so sick of this Hall is a cancer BS. It’s an infuriatingly common perception, and when someone tells me that I have basically all I need to judge their hockey knowledge. No issue with questioning him, as he has undoubtedly underperformed in the second half.

    Our D last night was:
    Sekera-Fayne
    Reinhart-Oesterle
    Nurse-Clendenning

    That is a really good D for the Condors, not even close for the NHL. The AHL D outnumber the NHL D 2:1

    Apart from that, there are probably several reasons why Hall has underperformed in the second half of the season.

    1) Purcell traded. I think his loss has been understated for that line.
    2) Mostly ineffective players replacing Purcell, Hall still plays the best.. Much harder to do with poorer linemates.
    3) Riding out another waste of his prime season in the NHL. You think this season has been hard on us? Imagine how it must feel for him. It must be tough to give your all for an exercise in futility.
    4) Leon’s (likely) injury, though he has looked better lately.
    ==========

    Well said. The trading of Purcell has been overlooked.

  53. Realist72 says:

    Until the defence is addressed by adding a semi competent offensive D man, the Likes of Hall et el will struggle to put up points. The fact that Reinhart played better than Nurse is meaningless, Reinhart is a Clydesdale playing in the era of Thoroughbreds. Nurse is an exceptional skater with a superior physical edge who’s development has been sacrificed to the past Gods of incompetent management. The roster construction is deeply flawed and until it is addressed, the perceived “Offensive Stars” will underperform. Get ready to have the bandage ripped off Oiler Nation because nothing changes until at least 2 major pieces are exchanged for more effective players. How can you stay with this roster and hope for better days ahead? Those inside the bubble are oblivious to the existence of the bubble. You are not sacrificing what you think you are sacrificing to improve, and the overpayment is only perceived rather than being real. What the Oilers currently have does not work and therefore is less valuable than you think.

  54. SudburyOil says:

    I’m paying attention to this forced march to season’s end only to track McDavid’s challenge for the Calder.

    I was irked to see Domi score an empty-netter last night and only wish the Oilers could provide McDavid with opportunities to pad his stats like that.

    Out of curiosity, I looked up how many points the top 6 rookies have received on empty nets.

    Unsurprisingly, Panarin leads with 4 pts, Domi and Eichel each have 2, McDavid has 1, while Larkin and Gostisbehere have 0.

    Doesn’t look like much, but as the #ConnorForCalder campaign heats up, it might be worth arguing that more than 6% of Panarin’s points are on empty nets, while Eichel and Domi got 4% of their points that way. McDavid’s at 2%.

    It’s amazing the things you focus on when you’re an Oilers fan.

  55. Pretendergast says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    The Eberle for Hamonic talk has been going on for so long on this and other blogs I already figured he was gone.

    Plus we all know Hall gets it year in and year out because he’s supposed to carry the team more than he has since 2010 somehow.

    Seems unless he’s supernova hes just that guy that turns over the puck too much.

  56. season not played says:

    I am not suggesting Hall is a cancer in the dressing room, I have no idea what goes on in the dressing room.

    What I am suggesting is that in his last 129 games he is 24g 38a 62 points. Good? Yes, Elite? No.

    Does the defense affect how Hall finishes around the net? Do the role players? I just find it funny how it’s the defence, the rookie center, the role players, the PP isn’t tailored around him, must be an undisclosed injury, I mean really. A little accountability?

    What I am suggesting is that he gives up at least as much as he gets with his indifference to playing fundamentally sound hockey. And I know there a very few perfect hockey players.

    I think it is very telling that he wasn’t named to the World Cup team and am extremely interested to see if he makes it as I’m sure we all are.

    What I am suggesting is that Taylor Halls trade value is likely the highest on the team outside McDavid. For now. Show up with a 50 point season next year and the Oilers have lost an opportunity to cash him in for a piece or two that can help them win hockey games. They need to change the makeup of the team.

    I predicted last year in about November that we better start picking out words that rhyme with Mathews if some serious changes weren’t made and what do you know.

    Can this team be turned around without trading Hall, of course. I’m suggesting hedging that bet and cashing him in now because I don’t believe he is as good a some do and only needs another year or two to prove it.

    Hope my opinion wasn’t too offensive to the apologists.

  57. Generational Poster says:

    Since the draft lottery is pretty much a “scheduled win” for the Oilers, I’m trading:

    Auston Matthews
    Mark Fayne
    Letestu and/or Korpse

    for
    Adam Larsson
    NJD 1st 2016 (12th ish)

    Add assets to balance as required. Sign Demers or trade for Hamonic.

  58. Ducey says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Send Nurse down now & the only option is Nikitin goes back in the line-up with nobody left in the press box. Maybe at such point one of Gryba/Pardy returns it can be considered.

    But Nikitin is leading the team in CF%! He is their best Dman!

    Clearly they are keeping Nikitin out to aid “Lost-em for Auston”

  59. linkfromhyrule says:

    jm363561: You really would think the coaches would be able to get a player to say “Well done” to his line mates on a frequent and regular basis!

    Lmao, I had to read this a few times before I got it. I feel like Kassian doesn’t say “well done” to his teammates, he just softens his serial killer eyes for a few seconds.

  60. G Money says:

    dustrock: 5. Were the Oilers eliminated from the playoffs in February again? Come on guys, if you don’t think Hall is depressed and just playing out the season right now, I don’t know what to tell you. This is a highly competitive guy who was back to back Memorial Cup MVP. Fully expect if we’re Done in December again this winter he’ll be asking for a trade. And he’d be damn justified.

    EXACTLY.

    http://i.imgur.com/46gJDB9.png

    This is futile season #6 for Hall now, the sixth straight season of being the saviour and the best player* trying to drive success with a hopelessly broken roster.

    The defense and bottom 6 are still broken, but for the first time in years, the team had two or three legit centres for much of the year – except they were constantly broken too.

    Suspect that Draisaitl was nursing an injury from the end of January too, which doubly impacted Hall’s effectiveness as the season died (hey! the effectiveness of the C has a huge influence on the effectiveness of his wingers! Oh, except for Yak – in his case, that’s a character flaw)

    Drai’s been getting better the last five games or so, but it’s too little too late. Realistic elimination was in January, mathematical elimination was Saturday. Again.

    Hall’s no longer a hockey player, he’s an asylum seeker stuck in a goddamn refugee camp.

    “Taylor, meet your new Warlords, Lowe and MacT. They run this place with an iron fist.”
    Six years ago: “I will do my best to turn this place into a paradise!”
    Today: “GODDAMN IT, I’M ONLY ONE MAN AGAINST A HORDE. PLEASE GET ME OUT OF THIS HELLHOLE BEFORE I DIE.”

    *we have a new saviour and best player now. Gee, for some reason, adding McDavid resulted in a worse finish than last year. Applying the same thought process as for Hall: #BlameMcDavid

  61. G Money says:

    RexLibris: (haven’t watched the last two games – see above)

    Just more proof that when you become a blogger, you’re required to stop watching the games.

    Hey Rex – how was the move back to your Mom’s basement?

  62. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Just got here, and I don’t have much time.

    I’m sure it has been said in the comments but I must reiterate.

    Taylor Hall is not a fucking Cancer.

    He is a Scorpio.

    /end rant

  63. vinotintazo says:

    rickithebear,

    I might be wrong, but most goals are from rebounds… shooting at Pads, Chest, shoulders, also create rebounds.

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

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I think it is very fair to say that since the ASB Hall has likely played himself off of Team Canada for next September. I won’t get into a debate about whether or not it was realistic but there were a lot of very smart people pointing out how great he was playing and his play without question has trailed off. It’s bene kind of sad to watch because I really do love Taylor Hall but ya needs to work on that consistency and without question a stable team around would definitely have helped.

    On the plus side Connor McDavid. I mean wow, top five in rookie scoring so far with a few games left. Can he catch Larkin or Domi before the season runs out? According to ESPN this morning he s behind only Benn and Kane in PPG this season. That folks is fricken amazing for an 18-19 year old playing for the CrapTastic Oilers! Especially considering he’s been scoring at 1.15 PPG since he came back from the clavicle. Like wow, what a beauty.

  65. JDï™ says:

    Klima’s_Bucket: He is a Scorpio.

    Hopefully not this one.

  66. G Money says:

    Had a request to run the NerdAlert scripts on another game, SJS vs WSH from March 12th. Here’s what that looks like:

    https://oilersnerdalert.wordpress.com/2016/03/23/game-by-request-2016-03-12-capitals-at-sharks/

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

    G Money,

    Maybe his pay should fluctuate based on if the Oilers are in playoff contention then? More to start the season but significantly scaled back later on if they are out of the running.

    I understand the point you are making but the guys is also getting paid $6 million a year to play a game. Not sure you, myself or anyone on this blog could mail in 1/4 of our work year and get away with it without receiving a bit of criticism.

    This is not in any way shape or form saying that Taylor Hall is a problem or is a cancer or anything like that and I am truly sympathetic to the argument that the years of futility are weighing him down. But if your assertion is true I do believe it calls into question certain aspects of leadership potential does it not? Is Hendricks or McDavid backing off now that the team is out? How about Talbot or Reinhart? I don’t disagree that losing is tough on a guy but giving your best effort throughout the year regardless of the team’s position is a big part of leadership. Taylor was a stud before the all-star break. Commentators around the league were discussing him and praising his play but it fell off a cliff a couple months ago and I think it is perfectly fair to ask why and to criticize the idea that “well it was another lost season so who cares?”

  68. vinotintazo says:

    any update on RNH?

  69. G Money says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!,

    Think about it this way: the effort level for NHL players is highest when their pay is the lowest.

    Why?

    Then apply it to Taylor Hall’s last six years and you should have your answer.

  70. frjohnk says:

    Elite players will go through slumps in parts of seasons

    Crosby started the season with 9 points in 18 games.

    Heck even full seasons.

    Ovechkin scored 65 points in 78 games in 11-12.
    Jagr in his prime.
    There are others

    Taylor Hall has a big enough track record of producing at elite production that one would suggest he will bounce back.

    There are various reasons why his production has slowed but we don’t really know.

    One thing to look at would his underlying numbers ( scoring chances, shots etc) to see if there is a drop there as well.

  71. JDï™ says:

    vinotintazo,

    Latest thing I could find:

    Jack Michaels ‏@EdmontonJack 12h12 hours ago

    No real update on RNH. Evaluated tomorrow and then a decision will be made for San Jose.

  72. vinotintazo says:

    JDï™,

    thx

  73. Younger Oil says:

    So many people are blaming/attributing Draisaitl to Hall’s slumping.

    I really don’t think that’s fair.

    He has more points than Hall since McDavid returned.

    If you’re using that argument, it is just as easy and valid to say that the only reason Hall’s numbers were so good earlier in the year was because Draisaitl was so good.

    Neither have been good, but not a single person has said Draisaitl is slumping because Hall is slumping, and I think that is very unfair. It is a synergistic relationship.

    I’d argue that since McDavid’s return Draisaitl has been noticeable for more good things than Hall has.

    All that being said though, it is very surprising that the coach hasn’t tried splitting them up.

  74. Skook says:

    Hi all, love the blog, first time poster.

    I’m surprised no one is mentioning the return of McDavid in regards to Hall’s recent fall off in play. Taylor has always been the top dog and now he’s playing second fiddle to an 18 year old. He feels he has to prove himself, overthinks, starts squeezing his stick a little. It will take some time for him to adjust. Or he might decide he needs to be top dog somewhere else.

    This is why I haven’t posted before – I don’t know much about hockey, but I know a great deal about being jealous of people with greater ability. Finally, my skill set comes in handy!

  75. Caramel Batman says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!:
    I think there is 0 chance of Nurse playing many, if any, games in the AHL next year.He played the whole year in the NHL, to send him down next year is an admission of fault of management…seems unlikely.

    Maybe, maybe, if we add a bunch of new NHL faces it could happen.I’m skeptical though.

    I would be shocked if Nurse plays in the AHL. I haven’t seen any evidence Chiarelli is anything but a conventional hockey guy, and Nurse brings those things that conventional hockey guys love.

  76. Bank Shot says:

    Perhaps Hall is purposely dogging it so he gets rewarded with a trade out of town Ala Schultz.

    Pretty unrealistic, but could you blame the guy?

  77. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Maybe Hall and McDavid are like Malkin and Sid.
    When they are both in the lineup their play looks good.

    When one of them is out of the lineup the other one goes Supernova.

  78. JDï™ says:

    Bank Shot,

    Yes, eroding your trade value while wanting out is a great way to go about it – especially after the deadline has passed.

    .

    Maybe we should check to see if Hall’s wife has given birth recently, or if his new equipment isn’t right? Also, I think the LW coach should be fired.

    We need another MacT presser!

  79. Caramel Batman says:

    Bank Shot:
    Perhaps Hall is purposely dogging it so he gets rewarded with a trade out of town Ala Schultz.

    Pretty unrealistic, but could you blame the guy?

    Hall was the best player on the ice last night.

    Does anyone watch the games?

    If I was Hall I would ask for a trade, but not because I was dogging it, but because even when I play well I get criticized.

  80. vinotintazo says:

    Skook:
    Hi all, love the blog, first time poster.

    I’m surprised no one is mentioning the return of McDavid in regards to Hall’s recent fall off in play. Taylor has always been the top dog and now he’s playing second fiddle to an 18 year old. He feels he has to prove himself, overthinks, starts squeezing his stick a little. It will take some time for him to adjust. Or he might decide he needs to be top dog somewhere else.

    This is why I haven’t posted before – I don’t know much about hockey, but I know a great deal about being jealous of people with greater ability. Finally, my skill set comes in handy!

    he set up two grade A chances, kassian and hall just couldnt finish.

  81. Pajamah says:

    Caramel Batman: Hall was the best player on the ice last night.

    Does anyone watch the games?

    If I was Hall I would ask for a trade, but not because I was dogging it, but because even when I play well I get criticized.

    Every player for every team gets criticized, whether rightly, or wrongly so.

    I very much doubt Hall gives half a fuck what people are saying on the internet. The guy is a superstar, and has been since he was a teenager. I’m sure he has thick skin, or just avoids it entirely.

    Go look up Penguin blogs from October – Jan. Plenty of people suggesting now being the best time to cash in Crosby.

    This is more indicative of idiots, than it is current state of affairs.

    I wouldn’t blame Hall if he wants out, but only because he is sick of losing, not because of fans/trolls.

  82. McSorley33 says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I remember when someone had the temerity to suggest trading RNH for an elite top D.

    Burned at the stake in here.

    Taylor Hall is a great offensive player but he has become a no fly zone in here.

  83. JDï™ says:

    Pajamah: Every player for every team gets criticized, whether rightly, or wrongly so.

    I’d say the Canadian teams are probably the worst, and it would be tough to rank them in order of lunatic fans.

    Canadian fans the worst – no Cups in 23 years – are we the problem?

  84. Statsman says:

    I am not here to dump on Hall, and I don’t feel that he is a “cancer” in the room, but I have noticed a few things watching him in the second half of the season. I like Hall’s skill set a lot (his tools, if you will). It’s his tool box I am worried about.

    He seems to like to do things his way, regardless of coaching or line mates. His situational awareness, which TMac has spoken about numerous times, is not very good. He makes a lot of the bad decisions at the most inopportune times. Back in the day, we would say that he is bordering on “uncoachable”.

    This does not in any way mean that he is unskilled because we all know that he has blazing speed and an ability to drive the play in the right direction.

    To me, it means that he does not have the best hockey sense. He does not seem to be learning the nuances of situational awareness that elevates players from good to great. It appears that he gets it for a game or two and then inevitably reverts back to his old ways.

    I also do not think that he is a great team leader…if he was, he would probably be the captain by now.

    He still displays a lot of traits that would better describe a rookie coming into the league, not a player that is in his sixth year.

    I do understand that he is probably getting tired of losing by now as this team has not pissed a drop since he arrived, but he needs show a lot more leadership than I have seen him show.

    In conclusion, as daft as it may seem to most on this board, I think Hall will be one of the Steve Austins traded this summer. He definitely has the most value and could fetch us a top-pairing defenceman by himself. If I was Chia, I would do it (obviously based on the return).

    You may all fire when ready!

  85. Pajamah says:

    McSorley33:
    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I remember when someone had the temerity to suggest trading RNH for an elite top D.

    Burned at the stake in here.

    Taylor Hall is a great offensive player but he has become a no fly zone in here.

    That’s because you will never win a trade when you’re the GM giving up Taylor Hall.

    And that’s not to say you need to win the trade to create better balance. The team may improve if a Hall for Ekblad/Pietrangelo/#1D man trade were to take place.

    But now we sit here wondering how to replace the most effective, elite forward the Oilers have had since Doug Weight.

  86. Pajamah says:

    JDï™: I’d say the Canadian teams are probably the worst, and it would be tough to rank them in order of lunatic fans.

    Canadian fans the worst – no Cups in 23 years – are we the problem?

    Yes.

  87. Pajamah says:

    Statsman,

    Just read an Edm. Journal story on MSN, stating McLellan is “exasperated” with all the forwards save 97 and 29.

    The old core doesn’t seem to be listening. I believe Henricks even said a few games ago, that some players just aren’t listening to the coaches.

    Now we don’t know who are the culprits, but a culture change might be beneficial for both the player(s) and team.

    If he gets traded though, regret. Instant regret.

  88. godot10 says:

    Hall’s boxcars slowed when Klefbom got hurt and went south when Nugent-Hopkins got hurt and Draisaitl could not escape the toughest of matchups even half the time (at home), and with the team’s best defensemen down.

    There is paddling up stream, and there is paddling upstream with two massive leaks (Klefbom and Nugent-Hopkins) in the canoe.

    Hall pushed extremely hard in the first half of the season when Eberle went down, and then McDavid went down to keep the Oilers semi-respectable. When Klefbom and then Nugent-Hopkins went down, there just was not enough support.

  89. Chachi says:

    Not sure how anyone could say hall is uncoachable or that he is not a leader. He is one of the best left wingers in the game playing on a team that is hobbled both by injury and by roster make-up. He seemed pretty coachable when he led his team to two memorial cups a world junior championship and a world championship, (the last with the coach who is currently coaching him- weird!).

    In other words,
    Uncoachable? Bullshit!
    Not a leader? Bullshit!

  90. russ99 says:

    Pajamah:
    Statsman,

    Just read an Edm. Journal story on MSN, stating McLellan is “exasperated” with all the forwards save 97 and 29.

    The old core doesn’t seem to be listening. I believe Henricks even said a few games ago, that some players just aren’t listening to the coaches.

    Now we don’t know who are the culprits, but a culture change might be beneficial for both the player(s) and team.

    If he gets traded though, regret. Instant regret.

    McLellan needs to stop trying to get blood out of a turnip.

    Hall’s best play is carrying it in along the wall and cutting to the net, and only McDavid seems to be allowed to do that anymore.

    He’s got to be exasperated with having to retrieve off the dump constantly and the good West teams just taking it away from us and sending it back the other way.

    McLellan can complain about o-zone turnovers until hes’s blue in the face, but it’s like with Eakins, if you don’t adapt against different opposition, you play right into their plans.

    He’d have more of a legitimate gripe if the effort wasn’t there, but we’re getting beat due to positioning and leverage, not hustle.

  91. Hockey Buddha says:

    Klefbom and Davidson appear to have sustained fairly serious injuries (Davidson’s looked pretty ugly by my eye and lots of ugly speculation on Klefbom–I hope he’s not nearly as bad off as some have suggested), so I’m glad that Reinhart has been given the chance and is making good on it. I ‘m also pleased he has developed a bit of an edge to his game. I think that aspect of play is sorely needed in our defensive troops at this time. The Oilers absolutely need to be able to punish the opposition forwards, at least to a far greater extent than in recent years. Far fewer teams should be circling Edmonton on the calendar, looking forward to playing in those games, if guys like Reinhart, Nurse, Pardy, Gryba, etc. are out there manhandling the opposition some. We need more defenders who look at opposition forwards and think, “Hey, you’re really skilled. Can you still dangle like that while sitting on your backside? Let’s see. Nope.”

    I wish Klefbom and Davidson a return to full health from their injuries. I don’t think they’ll be rushed back into the line up, which is a good thing. I’m worried particularly about Klefbom’s long-term well being. I wish I had more information about his injury to placate my fears. ******* speculation.

  92. LMHF#1 says:

    rickithebear:
    Last night our team got20 shots in the kill zone. 33% above league average.

    After studying open hole shots it is apparent that
    -shooting at chest does not score
    -shooting at pads does not score
    – shooting high corner yields high miss rates.
    – shooting at perimeter which allows forward motion of blocker and glove.
    Results in higher open hole saves.

    – the best targeting area is under the blocker and glove; just above the pads.

    -Which requires an unnatural motion of drawing the glove and blocker down and in.

    -It eliminates the high miss rates of upper net targeting.
    Eliminating the potential for counter attack.

    -It forces the goalie to pick up the puck in a lower plane requiring a top down view.

    -If it hits the pads. the rebound control is greatly reduced.
    Potential for more high chance shots.

    -Worst case it gets saved. leading to OZ faceoffs.

    -with reduced miss rate and More OZ face offs.
    Much greater potential of OZ procession.

    -That area is best targeted with a controlled wrist shot.
    A quicker release shot that yields less blocked shots.

    -Next year that area will be much larger.

    Look were Kane ; Seguin target.

    I find it really odd that no one picks up on this Ricki. It’s the ‘why’ instead of the ‘what’, and much more interesting in terms of getting ahead of the curve through understanding the individual moments of the game rather than the statistical pile.

    Always appreciate your thoughts on this. I do wonder about the upper net targeting though, and if the angle you’re shooting from plays into how those shots work out. I suspect the more straight-on you are, the better chance for both hitting the net and generating rebounds, OZ faceoffs and keeping the puck in the zone.

    Also, no far side slappers from down the wing. How guys in the NHL still attempt this and don’t get sent to the pine is beyond me. It’s like a breakout pass to the opposition unless your name is Wayne and you wear #99.

  93. Caramel Batman says:

    Hall’s not a great finisher. We know this. This is the one and only problem.

    He’s a good defensive player, with good hockey sense, who tries very hard, but he’s not an elite finisher. If McClellan is exasperated with that, then that is evidence he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

    Draisatl isn’t a great finisher either. So next year when his 14% shooting percentage regresses and everyone is talking about a slump, remember that Draisatl is not a great finisher.

    That’s not a reason to trade either of them, especially at a discount (i.e. Hall for Myers or Hamonic or someone like that).

    You can’t win a Taylor Hall trade. It’s impossible.

  94. RexLibris says:

    G Money: Just more proof that when you become a blogger, you’re required to stop watching the games.

    Hey Rex – how was the move back to your Mom’s basement?

    Ha, I find myself longing for the end of the season, or at least some breaks in the schedule because the rotation of watching some of these games into the wee hours of the morning is killing me.

    I suppose being in Calgary you probably have some locally-sourced, non-GMO, vegan-optional, fair-trade, artisanal cheetos to nom on while you crunch your numbers. Just keep the dust out of your hipster-beard!

    😉

    Never have I seen so much ironic facial hair as the last two times I was in Calgary. Seemed everyone had a beard. Even some of the men.

  95. LMHF#1 says:

    Caramel Batman:

    You can’t win a Taylor Hall trade.It’s impossible.

    I take it you’re extrapolating return in making this statement?

    If the Kings took leave of their senses and sent you Doughty, you certainly win that trade. There are many others as well.

  96. StixMalone says:

    I believe that Hall’s “problem” is simply that he cares TOO much! He feels he has to lead the team and do it all himself. I feel he has to simplify and slow down his game a bit. This might make him aware of the options available when he carries it in instead of shooting on a low percentage chance. A cancer he is not but he is a frustrated young man trying to carry the weight of this team in his 6 th losing year I have sympathy for that young man. I couldn’t do it and I certainly wouldn’t appreciate unruly fans calling me out on it! Everyone knows what the real problem is with this team. Yeah the core might be blown up but only and unfortunately due to our lack of a reasonable defence core. It’s a shame it’s come to this over the last 10 years but we have to say now with a glimmer of hope that ” Pete’s on it “. Next year we are in a new building and with the down turned economy this abysmal team won’t last another few years of icing a non competitive team. It takes a team to win and it takes a complete team effort to win. If you think Hall doesn’t compete you’re wrong! Start cheering and watch the Canuck games and see if you’re happier! Just my 2 penny thought of the day……

  97. natejax97 says:

    Sad day…that’s what it will be when we say goodbye to one of the 3 players we all built our hopes around 4 years ago.

  98. JDï™ says:

    LMHF#1: If the Kings took leave of their senses and sent you Doughty, you certainly win that trade.

    So in addition to being a cunning GM, Chia also needs a meddling owner, a babysitter situation, or similar scandal around the player coming back, in order to win the trade.

  99. Caramel Batman says:

    LMHF#1: I take it you’re extrapolating return in making this statement?

    If the Kings took leave of their senses and sent you Doughty, you certainly win that trade. There are many others as well.

    Of course. If something that will never happen, happens, then the Oilers can win a Taylor Hall trade.

    But I guarantee you this. Name a trade that the Oilers win, and you will also have named a trasde that will never happen.

  100. Fog of Warts says:

    Here’s another possibility: opposing teams don’t play their A game until the scoreboard forces the issue. In past seasons, the wake-up-slumbering-Suzzies were scored by the Pipe Line, with “T. Hall” tattooed on the majority.

    Now that CMD is jumping over the boards and potting many of the snooze busters, there are fewer to be had for everyone else.

    When your opponents feel secure playing a little less balls to the wall, they can play with intensity, while also slowing things down just enough to take the measure of what’s going on around them.

    Then when—if—we finally do force the opponent to play balls to the wall for five minutes in the third period, they’re pretty well calibrated on the optimal mode of attack.

    You stare at this group and try to see the bones of a cup-winning team, right now it’s darn hard to do. We almost look further away now than right after the last lottery win.

    If the summer were a few months longer, I could see Chia moving out nine players in a total fresh-blood infusion.

    The handling of Nurse this season makes the handling of Drai last season look positively masterful (which it might actually have been). It always seemed to me that Eakins’ opinion of himself was nothing compared to the effigy we constructed around him. Larger-than-life effigy tossed onto a tire fire? Turned out like always.

    From the perspective of the get-less-irritating quick scheme, mission accomplished (so long as you close your eyes during the TMac PP).

    Unfortunately, “getting-less-irritating quick schemes” fall under the heading “reasons other than winning”.

    The word “cancer” is basically a surrogate phrase for people who are unable to look at a big mess and then admit “beats me, I’ve got nothing.”

    Pro tip: never choose a temporary pseudonym after a skin condition. These can prove remarkable hard to shake. I was slated for foot surgery, but the team of six surgeons had a set to, and it was postponed to an indefinite future date. From what I heard, the meeting ended with the following exchange:

    Surgeon #5: Hey you bastards, enough already! Here’s the thing: how about we just all give up on listing everything that needs to be removed, and just list all the tissue we plan to keep?

    Surgeon #6: You know what, that might actually make this manageable.

    Surgeon #1: Well, we’ll have to adjourn, refresh our notes, and come back at this fresh from a new perspective.

    Surgeon #3: Absolutely. We got nowhere today.

    Surgeon #2: That’s it then, we’ll all have our people set something up.

    Surgeon #4: “Shotgun!” as he’s first to rise out of his chair to use the communal hand sanitation station.

  101. JDï™ says:

    LeBrun on scoring:

    But if he doesn’t, the specter of the NHL’s first year without a 50-goal scorer since 2004 — a.k.a. the Dead Puck Era — certainly underlines what everyone has known for a while now: It’s hard to score goals in this league.

    http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/15051701/nhl-50-goal-scorers-thing-past

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

    russ99,

    Been saying this all year but much like the powerplay setup I doubt adaptation will occur. We’ve talked about GMs wanting “their guys” in positions once they come over and I have no doubt coaches feel the same way about players. TMac and Chia will remake the Oilers into a big physical grinding team it’s literally the only thing they know so why wouldn’t they. It might work it might not but over the last few weeks I’ve decided I don’t really care as long as the team starts winning. If they trade away all of Hall, RNH, Eberle or anyone really and starting continually making the playoffs then who cares? It’s been 10 years, that’s too long for anything really so now it’s time to roll the dice and see if these two gentlemen can in fact turn this thing North.

    So I wish them the best of luck this off-season, I tried to argue with guys on this blog against trading certain players but we’re back down to 30th again and this fan is tired of it. I hate having to check out come March. I dislike having to cheer for the Hawks or the Caps (I know it looks bandwagony but I fell in love with Toews during his WJC days and Ovie has been my favourite player for over a decade so I hope he wins one this year) and most of all I dislike having to sit around and pretend that players like Fayne, Letestu or Nikitin (spits) are going to move the dial. For too long Oiler fans have drank the Kool-Aid with this group and sadly nothing has changed. We hoped for the best but it turned out like always.

    So all in all, Godspeed Chia. Load both barrels and fire when ready. It will be sad to see some guys leave but winning needs to become the only thing this franchise cares about.

  103. JDï™ says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!: I dislike having to cheer for the Hawks or the Caps

    You’ve got Chorney and Chimera to Ch-eer for!

  104. Hockey Buddha says:

    Chachi,

    Hall is a leader, but Hendricks has my vote for captaincy next season. Guy’s all warrior, and I have total respect for his heart for the game. Again, I know it wasn’t very popular, but I do give props to Nurse for going to bat for Hendricks. (I know it’s in dispute amongst fans, but Hendricks did say that Polak “unintentionally” got his stick on his skate. I believe Hendricks and thought the video showed it as well.)

    Finally, I see Hall, McDavid and Nurse as future team leaders; I don’t know what kind of a dressing room presence any of these guys have, but I am appreciative of their on-ice presence. Hall has been the on-ice leader for a few years now. When he goes, so goes the team. McDavid consistently brings that same quality (what exceptional talent that kid has).

    This team is going to transform some over the summer. I hope that Chiarelli can make acquisitions without giving up too much. Cap space and the expansion draft throw some interesting complications into the mix. Again, getting back to the precise nature of Klefbom’s injury. It may reconfigure who gets protected on our blueline.

  105. Statsman says:

    Chachi:
    Not sure how anyone could say hall is uncoachable or that he is not a leader.He is one of the best left wingers in the game playing on a team that is hobbled both by injury and by roster make-up.He seemed pretty coachable when he led his team to two memorial cups a world junior championship and a world championship, (the last with the coach who is currently coaching him- weird!).

    In other words,
    Uncoachable? Bullshit!
    Not a leader? Bullshit!

    I think you may be mistaking coachability with being the best player on the ice in the case of your Memorial Cup rebuttal. He led the team to two Mem.Cups playing against teams that were comprised of 95% players that will never play at a higher level than junior. He was the most skilled player in the Memorial Cups and it showed. It was also one of the reasons that he was drafted first overall. I stated that he does have the skill to be one of the best wingers in the game…but without the smarts and the ability to be flexible in the way that you play, you get what you see.

    You point to his success in the World Championships as proof that he is coachable. I would rebut that by asking you why Lindy Ruff would not play him when it counted in the WC in 2013. The answer is that he would not play the way the coaches wanted him to!
    I did state that he plays the right way for a couple of games and then reverts back to “his way”. So he does have it in him..he just needs to apply that for more than a game or two at a time.

    Again, I don’t hate the player or anything, but I have watched him for six years now and he does not seem to be getting the whole “team game” thing. Maybe he will, maybe he won’t, but at this point, I think management is a bit fed up with him and the best thing would be to move on from the player.

    For those saying that you will never win a Hall trade, you may be right. But sometimes you can “lose” a trade on a player-for-player basis, but still come out of it better off as a team.

  106. Caramel Batman says:

    JDï™:
    LeBrun on scoring:

    But if he doesn’t, the specter of the NHL’s first year without a 50-goal scorer since 2004 — a.k.a. the Dead Puck Era — certainly underlines what everyone has known for a while now: It’s hard to score goals in this league.

    http://espn.go.com/nhl/story/_/id/15051701/nhl-50-goal-scorers-thing-past

    The article is spot on, identifying the defense first strategy of every team in the league.

    And the reason every team plays defense first is because the points structure incentivizes it.

    And so the solution is to change the point structure.

    This is obvious. Every single intelligent person who has thought about the issue agrees. There is 100% unanimity on the issue.

    And yet I have never heard a MSM member suggest it. Conclusion: They are stupid.

    I have never heard someone in the NHL suggest the idea. Conclusion. They are stupid.

    It is incredible that they will tweak all sorts of things that are either never going to make a difference or are much larger changes (3-on-3 hockey) but they won’t even discuss the most obvious solution, a solution that is guaranteed to work.

  107. Caramel Batman says:

    Statsman,

    If Hall doesn’t get the “team game,” why does the team do so well when he is on the ice compared to when he is off the ice?

  108. prefonmich says:

    The cancers on this team are at the very top of the food chain.

    I really think they need to FIRE Mactavish and Howson to send a message that incompetence is not tolerated any more- the advice this past summer about some of these players was dead wrong. Not surrounding these kids with the mentors they can learn from year after year is what has created this whole mess. It’s happening again with Nurse though in current mgmt. He NEEDS to be getting experience in the AHL- I don’t care if his raw skills are better than all our current D, he is not learning the right way at this level yet mgmt continues to put these kids in situations where they have the most skill but the least experience and they expect different results.

    Example- when Yak finally had a mentor like Roy who had enough skill to keep up, enough experience to set a player straight on the ice, and enough willingness to work with a young player, ‘magic’ happened and Yak was suddenly a much better player. This has not been enough of a priority for any mgmt group to date, INCLUDING the current one… Think McLellan is exasperated after 70ish games, how about poor Taylor Hall after 6 years?!?!? HE is not the cancer…

  109. JDï™ says:

    Caramel Batman: And so the solution is to change the point structure.

    But the – tradition… /s

    I’ve long thought giving more incentive to winning is needed. You’re talking about the 3 – 2 – 1 point system, right?

  110. SwedishPoster says:

    Caramel Batman:
    Hall’s not a great finisher.We know this.This is the one and only problem.

    He’s a good defensive player, with good hockey sense, who tries very hard, but he’s not an elite finisher.If McClellan is exasperated with that, then that is evidence he doesn’t know what he is talking about.

    Draisatl isn’t a great finisher either.So next year when his 14% shooting percentage regresses and everyone is talking about a slump, remember that Draisatl is not a great finisher.

    That’s not a reason to trade either of them, especially at a discount (i.e. Hall for Myers or Hamonic or someone like that).

    You can’t win a Taylor Hall trade.It’s impossible.

    You could win an Eric Lindros trade by a landslide so ofc you could win a Taylor Hall trade. All depends on the return.
    Hall is the best player on the team, at least until we’ve seen McDavid for enough games that the other teams have fully grasped and adapted to him. That doesn’t mean you can’t win a trade. His value should be very high, so you would get a major piece for him. You would also completely change the dynamic of the team and inside the locker room. This is not saying the “core is rotten” but if the goal is to rattle the cage trading guys from the perimeter of the roster won’t change anything. If that is the case you need to move one of the alphas which pretty much means one of the six million dollar men, or add a veteran star player to disrupt the top group which is pretty much impossible to do unless Stamkos really loves Edmonton or Melnyk loses his mind and trades away Karlsson.They’ve been swapping out bottom sixers and bottom pairing guys a few times already to little avail.

    Now, I’m not saying trade Hall because I don’t think it’s the best route. At least not as a first option, but if something comes along that gives us both a major player and a different balance I’m perfectly fine with it.

  111. dustrock says:

    Hockey Buddha:
    Chachi,

    Hall is a leader, but Hendricks has my vote for captaincy next season.Guy’s all warrior, and I have total respect for his heart for the game.Again, I know it wasn’t very popular, but I do give props to Nurse for going to bat for Hendricks.(I know it’s in dispute amongst fans, but Hendricks did say that Polak “unintentionally” got his stick on his skate.I believe Hendricks and thought the video showed it as well.)

    Finally, I see Hall, McDavid and Nurse as future team leaders; I don’t know what kind of a dressing room presence any of these guys have, but I am appreciative of their on-ice presence.Hall has been the on-ice leader for a few years now.When he goes, so goes the team.McDavid consistently brings that same quality (what exceptional talent that kid has).

    This team is going to transform some over the summer.I hope that Chiarelli can make acquisitions without giving up too much.Cap space and the expansion draft throw some interesting complications into the mix.Again, getting back to the precise nature of Klefbom’s injury.It may reconfigure who gets protected on our blueline.

    Was Doug Weight our last skilled captain? We’ve tried the gritty warriors. Get one of the skilled players the C. If none of the previous core warrant the C that says a lot, so give it to McDavid.

  112. Quinlan says:

    I agree that Hall has struggled to put points on the board recently.

    He looks like he’d rather be scoring more right now and I wish he’d score more right now.

    Oh well. He’s been elite at that for most of his career and he’s only 24 so I’m sure he’ll get back to scoring at elite levels.

    Nothing to see here folks.

  113. Statsman says:

    Caramel Batman:
    Statsman,

    If Hall doesn’t get the “team game,” why does the team do so well when he is on the ice compared to when he is off the ice?

    Do so well? I don’t think well means what you think it means. They are dead last…AGAIN.

    Sure his Corsi/Fenwick etc. usually seem to look pretty good, but as one of the many people that compile the stats at Oiler home games, I can tell you that “I know a thing or two about scoring chances” (Ha-thought I would throw that in there for a laugh). He is definitely a terror for defencemen when he is flying into the zone at warp speed, but that is the scariest thing about him. Once the play gets close to the net, he is not usually very dangerous. Most of the time, I see him blazing in and then firing a chest high wrist shot into the goalie. Yay, positive Corsi event and to some, maybe even a scoring chance. To be honest, though, most of his sorties end without much danger of anything else happening.

    Once again, I am not saying that he is a bad player, but with his set of tools, he could be so much more. Maybe that is why I am a little down on him.

    You know how sometimes a very good coach eventually reaches the point where it is time to move on, regardless of his prior successes? This is where Hall is at here in Edmonton. When he does get moved, I wish him all the best, but I anticipate that we will get an excellent player in return for him.

  114. prefonmich says:

    SwedishPoster,

    “They’ve been swapping out bottom 6’s… to no avail”. This is exactly the problem. Instead of looking to surround the youth with strong mentors who can actually play WITH these talented kids rather than below them in the order, they have picked up the Ferences, Letestus, Faynes, Hendrickses… the list is long. These kids have never been mentored by anything other than a revolving door of coaches with a variety of messages. You hear kids on other teams talk about the impact of playing with a player like Doan (in Az) or Campbell (in Fla- with Ekblad) or even for a short time Roy in Edmonton when Yak said it was the first time he had played with a good centre. These kids can’t be depended upon to save the team from themselves and Hall can only be faulted for trying too hard, putting too much pressure on himself and trying to take over the game by himself. You see it in all these kids- they try to do too much. Every coach has said at the start of the year how ‘coachable’ these guys are and suddenly by the end they’re not learning?? They want to improve but they are not in a system that breeds success and that is on the managers of this team.

  115. godot10 says:

    4th line players are supposed to be warriors. Hendricks is just doing his job. That doesn’t mean that he should be captain.

    Captain’s can’t lead from the rear (or the bench) in this case. Captain’s have to be on the ice when the game is being decided, and 4th line warriors don’t qualify.

  116. Thorin says:

    rickithebear:
    Last night our team got20 shots in the kill zone. 33% above league average.

    After studying open hole shots it is apparent that
    -shooting at chest does not score
    -shooting at pads does not score
    – shooting high corner yields high miss rates.
    – shooting at perimeter which allows forward motion of blocker and glove.
    Results in higher open hole saves.

    – the best targeting area is under the blocker and glove; just above the pads.

    -Which requires an unnatural motion of drawing the glove and blocker down and in.

    -It eliminates the high miss rates of upper net targeting.
    Eliminating the potential for counter attack.

    -It forces the goalie to pick up the puck in a lower plane requiring a top down view.

    -If it hits the pads. the rebound control is greatly reduced.
    Potential for more high chance shots.

    -Worst case it gets saved. leading to OZ faceoffs.

    -with reduced miss rate and More OZ face offs.
    Much greater potential of OZ procession.

    -That area is best targeted with a controlled wrist shot.
    A quicker release shot that yields less blocked shots.

    -Next year that area will be much larger.

    Look were Kane ; Seguin target.

    Based on my experience trying to help my kids be better goalies and help their teammates be better scorers, I’d say this is true with a caveat – the distance between shooter and goalie matters as well.

    Humans can react to events they perceive in about 2/10ths of a second, or about 200ms (try it: http://www.humanbenchmark.com/tests/reactiontime). Highly trained goalies can get that reaction time down to 150ms. NHL players can get wrist shots of 80mph+, but lets go conservative and say a typical wrist shot hits 60mph. 60mph is 88 feet per second, or 17.6 feet per 200 milliseconds, or 13.2 feet per 150 milliseconds. That means that if you can get off a 60mph wrist shot within 13 feet of the NHL goalie you’re shooting at, the goalie won’t have time for the signal to travel from his eyes to his brain to his muscles before the puck passes him. At lower levels, this might be 15 or 16 feet out or more (beer leaguers, it might even be 20 feet out).

    So we teach goalies how to read what’s going to happen, how to predict the future, so that they’re already in the right spot before the shot happens. We teach them to look at the feet, the hands, the stick, to figure out if there’s a shot developing (if the player is pushing down or leaning on their stick making it bend a little, there’s highly likely a shot coming), and to track players throughout the game to find out which ones prefer to shoot and which ones are more likely to pass. And then, just in case, we teach them that if the skater is close enough that they could reach out and touch you with their stick if they stretch their arm out, well then you go in a tight butterfly with your blocker and trapper on top of your pads (as opposed to a loose butterfly, where the stick blade is on the ice and the blocker is up and the glove is up). This closes off the holes you mention.

    To counter this, we teach the shooters to aim just above the pads and under the armpits when further away, but to aim for the top corners if you’re in close and the goalie has gone into a tight butterfly. And if the goalie didn’t go into a butterfly at all and is still standing and you’re in close, then aim two inches above the blade of the goalie’s stick, right through that big inviting five hole.

    So, for shooters we teach:
    – more than a stick reach away and goalie’s up: aim for five hole and expect a save so scramble for the rebound
    – more than a stick reach away and goalie’s down: aim just above the pads between hip and elbow, prefer shooting glove-side when possible
    – less than a stick reach away and goalie’s up: aim for five hole but just above the stick blade
    – less than a stick reach away and goalie’s down, loose butterfly: aim just above the pads between hip and elbow, prefer shooting glove-side when possible
    – less than a stick reach away and goalie’s down, tight butterfly: aim for top corners
    – lateral across net, goalie’s sliding side-to-side: aim for post the goalie came from, or under pads if they’re off the ice

    And yes, wrist shots release faster and are harder for goalies and defensemen to read, so use them whenever you’re closer than thirty feet (top of the circles), but they’re useless from near the blueline because the goalie has three times as much time as they need to adjust their position.

  117. Caramel Batman says:

    Statsman: Do so well? I don’t think well means what you think it means. They are dead last…AGAIN.

    Sure his Corsi/Fenwick etc. usually seem to look pretty good, but as one of the many people that compile the stats at Oiler home games, I can tell you that “I know a thing or two about scoring chances” (Ha-thought I would throw that in there for a laugh). He is definitely a terror for defencemen when he is flying into the zone at warp speed, but that is the scariest thing about him. Once the play gets close to the net, he is not usually very dangerous. Most of the time, I see him blazing in and then firing a chest high wrist shot into the goalie. Yay, positive Corsi event and to some, maybe even a scoring chance. To be honest, though, most of his sorties end without much danger of anything else happening.

    Once again, I am not saying that he is a bad player, but with his set of tools, he could be so much more. Maybe that is why I am a little down on him.

    You know how sometimes a very good coach eventually reaches the point where it is time to move on, regardless of his prior successes? This is where Hall is at here in Edmonton. When he does get moved, I wish him all the best, but I anticipate that we will get an excellent player in return for him.

    Ignore Corsi, Fenwick, all the rest. Let’s just talk about goals.

    At 5×5 when Hall is on the ice the Oilers score 53.5% of the goals. That’s the best on the team of players who have played most of the season.

    When Hall is not on the ice the Oilers score 38% of the goals.

    Think about that for a while. Nothing you said above happens to be true. If it were true the Oilers wouldn’t consistently outscore the other team when Hall is on the ice.

    And this isn’t a one year aberration. It was true last year as well. He outscores the other team while playing against the best they have to offer. He’s the only player on the Oilers who does this.

    If the Oilers trade Hall it will be for a good player with a good reputation, but a player who isn’t as good as Hall. You can take that to the bank.

  118. AsiaOil says:

    I really like Oesterle’s passing and skating – sublime – but he’s absolutely got to pack on some weight to be an NHL player and bring some physicality to the game so that’s not a defensive liability. I watched the replay of the 3rd ARZ goal several times and it was was mostly his fault. Sure GR got caught up too high and could not control Rieder’s speed breaking to the net – but there was no other ARZ players anywhere close to the net – and Oesterle did his best Jultz impression by waving his purse at Rieder as he cut across the crease right in front of him. CMD stood around watching as well. Eberle tried to help even though it wasn’t his responsibility and got caught “also in the picture” – but at least he tried. Reider never even thinks of making that move against a bigger dman as he would have (and should have) gotten killed. So the kid has some wonderful tools – but he gets zero respect from the opposition as they know they will not pay any price for crashing the net if he is around. That has got to change or else he’s forever a 3rd pair guy – but tons of potential there.

    Reinhart’s improved play is due to one thing – playing with a partner who can pass, skate and act as a reliable outlet. When GR gets pressured now he knows where Oesterle is, and Oesterle is actually in the right spot to help. GR can make an short accurate pass to reach him, and Oesterle then moves the puck out of the zone. It happens regularly. So even with Oesterle’s obvious liabilities (size, rookie) he can still really help GR by being in the right spot and being able to pass and skate. Just shows you how bad most of the rest of our defense is – and for these reasons – I don’t bring back plodders with marginal passing skills like Gryba.

    As for Hall – you could see him fade after the ASB when the playoffs went up in smoke again. Let’s give the guy one year with some hope in March before we label him a loser OK? That said – we do need to change the team chemistry to some degree and moving one or two of the old core is necessary. Hall would be the last name on my list though.

  119. Quinlan says:

    Caramel Batman,

    Precisely. Very well said.

  120. PunjabiOil says:

    They aren’t going to trade hall – Chia is smarter than that. Listening to offers is not the same thing as actively shopping.

    One of RNH or Eberle, however, may be a different story.

  121. Norman Greenbaum says:

    PunjabiOil:
    They aren’t going to trade hall – Chia is smarter than that.Listening to offers is not the same thing as actively shopping.

    One of RNH or Eberle, however, may be a different story.

    Yeah, because he didn’t trade Seguin or Kessel.

  122. who says:

    Don’t know what Chia is going to do this summer but it should be interesting. I see Hall as tradeable mostly because he gets the biggest returnn on defense and we need a big return. I hear all this drive the bus, pushes the river stuff and I am not sure what those terms mean.
    For me it’s about who carries the play. Those are the players you build around. Especially players who can get the puck from our end into the other teams end without losing control of it. That is why centers and dmen are more valuable in most peoples minds. Our problem is we have plenty of these up front but none on the back end.
    The Oilers have three centers who can all carry the play which is why they can afford to deal a winger with the same skills. What they really need is a dman or two who can carry the puck up ice as well. Right now Nurse (maybe Oesterle) is the only guy back there who seems to have that ability and he has no idea what to do with it when he gets to the offensive blue line. The rest of the dcore in Edmonton (Klef, Sek, Dav, Griff) seem to be pass first kind of guys which is fine. I actually think these will all be pretty good first pass players in the next year or two.
    I love the fact that Taylor Hall goes deep into our end, retreives the puck and carries it up ice into the offensive zone. But I would like those of you who are dead set against trading him explain to me what he does that our 3 center men don’t already do. Maybe he should have just played center to begin with.
    My trade suggestion stands. Hall for Myers and Armia. That would give us a righty dman who can carry the puck from zone to zone and a good young winger.
    If you hate Myers then Hall for Trouba and Ehlers.

  123. Statsman says:

    Caramel Batman,

    You make a valid point re: percentage of goals scored while Hall is on the ice. I never once said that he does not drive the play or that he is not a good player.

    My frustration stems from the fact that when the game is still up for grabs, he seems to be “situationally unaware”. He makes costly mistakes at the most inopportune times…and yes, I know that if you have the puck more, you will most likely give it away more.

    I guess that to truly assess the character of this player, we would need to see how he plays when there is a playoff spot on the line or in the playoffs. The way I see it, you can be a good player but still not the right fit on any particular team.

    I just think that with how poorly the team has performed during his tenure, it is time to change the chemistry. And I agree that if you trade Hall, you will probably not get a “better player”…maybe one that just fits the current team’s needs better. A trade may also benefit Hall in that it will rejuvenate him.

  124. Quinlan says:

    Norman Greenbaum: Yeah, because he didn’t trade Seguin or Kessel.

    At the time of those deals, neither of those players were even close to Hall in terms of established offensive production against top quality competition.

  125. Quinlan says:

    who:
    For me it’s about who carries the play. Those are the players you build around.

    You got it. That’s what “pushes the river” and “drives the bus” means. You know, what you’d be getting rid of if you trade Hall.

  126. Norman Greenbaum says:

    Quinlan: At the time of those deals, neither of those players were even close to Hall in terms of established offensive production against top quality competition.

    True, but Chia’s not afraid to trade the big name.

    I say keep Hall.

  127. who says:

    Quinlan: You got it. That’s what “pushes the river” and “drives the bus” means. You know, what you’d be getting rid of if you trade Hall.

    Don’t think I’d be getting rid of it. Just changing the driver from a winger to a dman. Maybe this gives the team a little more balance.

  128. Drew says:

    Fog of Warts:
    Here’s another possibility: opposing teams don’t play their A game until the scoreboard forces the issue.In past seasons, the wake-up-slumbering-Suzzies were scored by the Pipe Line, with “T. Hall” tattooed on the majority.

    Now that CMD is jumping over the boards and potting many of the snooze busters, there are fewer to be had for everyone else.

    When your opponents feel secure playing a little less balls to the wall, they can play with intensity, while also slowing things down just enough to take the measure of what’s going on around them.

    Then when—if—we finally do force the opponent to play balls to the wall for five minutes in the third period, they’re pretty well calibrated on the optimal mode of attack.

    You stare at this group and try to see the bones of a cup-winning team, right now it’s darn hard to do.We almost look further away now than right after the last lottery win.

    If the summer were a few months longer, I could see Chia moving out nine players in a total fresh-blood infusion.

    The handling of Nurse this season makes the handling of Drai last season look positively masterful (which it might actually have been).It always seemed to me that Eakins’ opinion of himself was nothing compared to the effigy we constructed around him.Larger-than-life effigy tossed onto a tire fire?Turned out like always.

    From the perspective of the get-less-irritating quick scheme, mission accomplished (so long as you close your eyes during the TMac PP).

    Unfortunately, “getting-less-irritating quick schemes” fall under the heading “reasons other than winning”.

    The word “cancer” is basically a surrogate phrase for people who are unable to look at a big mess and then admit “beats me, I’ve got nothing.”

    Pro tip: never choose a temporary pseudonym after a skin condition.These can prove remarkable hard to shake.I was slated for foot surgery, but the team of six surgeons had a set to, and it was postponed to an indefinite future date.From what I heard, the meeting ended with the following exchange:

    Surgeon #5: Hey you bastards, enough already!Here’s the thing: how about we just all give up on listing everything that needs to be removed, and just list all the tissue we plan to keep?

    Surgeon #6: You know what, that might actually make this manageable.

    Surgeon #1: Well, we’ll have to adjourn, refresh our notes, and come back at this fresh from a new perspective.

    Surgeon #3: Absolutely.We got nowhere today.

    Surgeon #2: That’s it then, we’ll all have our people set something up.

    Surgeon #4: “Shotgun!” as he’s first to rise out of his chair to use the communal hand sanitation station.

    this is brilliant!

  129. sliderule says:

    The view here seems to be we are one good offensive D from playoffs or Stanley.

    It might be worth remembering that the three of the D type we thirst for like Subban ,OEL and Karlsson will not make the playoffs..I beleive the oilers have way more problems than just obtaining someone of that skill level.

    We have one winger that you can call a sniper and that is Eberle.Hall is a volume shooter that will score between 20-30 but never get the 40 we hoped for when he was drafted.

    If Hall is traded for Karlsson it would leave a pretty big hole up front that we could only fill by drafting Laine or Mathews .If we win the lottery and get one of those two we could trade Hall..If our lotto luck runs out and we pick at three or four.what do they do .The other Finn and Tkachuk and Nylander are not goal scorers they are play makers like Nuge,Just not quite as good.

    I would like to see them draft either Chychrun or Sergachev and then try to sign one of the free agent D that have been talked about here.The have both scored about .8 pts /game in this their draft year.Doughty ,Pietrangelo scored in that range and Jones and Eckblad scored slightly higher at .9.Chychrun and Sergachev run their teams power plays and both have a cannon of a shot..I think Chychrun is the better of the two as he scored higher in skill testing and there is the Russian factor..

    This is a great opportunity for the oilers to secure a franchise defenceman to grow along with their franchise center.and not have to give up an asset to acquire him.

  130. Adam Wu says:

    Let’s get one thing straight here. If a smart manager contemplates trading any member of the old “core”, he will be doing it to address roster balance, NOT for ridiculous notions of “chemistry” or “losing culture”.

    Fixing this team’s problems requires not a chemist, but an engineer.

  131. freedomisamyth says:

    I don’t believe any of these theories that Hall has packed it in once the team fell out of playoff contention. He still looks like he’s playing his bag off to my eyes. What it looks like to me though, is that he’s lost his confidence somewhat, but he’s still got that attitude that he should be single handedly driving the team to victory. He doesn’t have the best hands to begin with and so when his confidence is low he forces it a lot and gives the puck away trying to create something. Frankly to my eye, a large portion of the PP problems lately is Hall – he just turns it over far too frequently when he is handling it on the PP, and he handles it far more than he should, because he has the attitude that it’s up to him to make something happen (which to some extent is a good attitude, but he needs to take a step back and realize what he is good at and what he isn’t, and that there are better people in certain areas).

    This is not the only Hall there is – there is the Hall that was absolutely dominant in the first half of the season. That guy was playing with confidence, and playing with smarts. I don’t doubt he’ll get back there eventually.

  132. Snowman says:

    Adam Wu:

    Fixing this team’s problems requires not a chemist, but an engineer.

    But…but…but… Chia’s a lawyer…

  133. Chachi says:

    Statsman: You point to his success in the World Championships as proof that he is coachable. I would rebut that by asking you why Lindy Ruff would not play him when it counted in the WC in 2013. The answer is that he would not play the way the coaches wanted him to!
    I did state that he plays the right way for a couple of games and then reverts back to “his way”. So he does have it in him..he just needs to apply that for more than a game or two at a time.

    How did that work out for Lindy Ruff?

    The official IIHF final ranking of the tournament:

    1 Sweden
    2 Switzerland
    3 United States
    4 Finland
    5 Canada
    6 Russia
    7 Czech Republic
    8 Slovakia
    9 Germany
    10 Norway
    11 Latvia
    12 Denmark
    13 France
    14 Belarus
    15 Austria
    16 Slovenia

  134. square_wheels says:

    I said the other day our RW ranks may need a complete purge, for Cap reasons (Eberle) as much as balance. Hall needs a Purcell, or just bring Teddy P back….seriously, he was a useful NHL RW, just lacked any GRITENSITY.

    G will spend all summer sucking down NW Calgary’s power grid trying to measure GRITENSITY, I am sure of it.

  135. Chachi says:

    Hockey Buddha:
    Chachi,

    Hall is a leader, but Hendricks has my vote for captaincy next season.Guy’s all warrior, and I have total respect for his heart for the game.Again, I know it wasn’t very popular, but I do give props to Nurse for going to bat for Hendricks.(I know it’s in dispute amongst fans, but Hendricks did say that Polak “unintentionally” got his stick on his skate.I believe Hendricks and thought the video showed it as well.)

    Finally, I see Hall, McDavid and Nurse as future team leaders; I don’t know what kind of a dressing room presence any of these guys have, but I am appreciative of their on-ice presence.Hall has been the on-ice leader for a few years now.When he goes, so goes the team.McDavid consistently brings that same quality (what exceptional talent that kid has).

    This team is going to transform some over the summer.I hope that Chiarelli can make acquisitions without giving up too much.Cap space and the expansion draft throw some interesting complications into the mix.Again, getting back to the precise nature of Klefbom’s injury.It may reconfigure who gets protected on our blueline.

    Hall does not need to be the captain. He will “lead”, as usual, by being the best player on the ice most nights. Too bad most of the other players on his teams in the NHL have been either replacement level or AHL level and he has not been able to “lead” them miraculously to a winning record.

  136. Jaxon says:

    Re-sign Zach Kassian
    Re-sign Iiro Pakarinen
    Pick RW Jesse Puljujarvi (righty, faster, more responsible player)
    Sign UFA RD Jason Demers
    Sign UFA G Chad Johnson
    Trade LW Lauri Korpikoski and LD Caleb Jones to CBJ for RD Michael Paliotta and LW Kerby Rychel
    Convince LD Ziyat Paigin to break his contract and come over this fall to start in the AHL
    Re-sign UFA RD Eric Gryba
    Re-sign RFA LD Jordan Oesterle
    Next summer sign UFA RD Brent Burns

  137. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Caramel Batman: Of course.If something that will never happen, happens, then the Oilers can win a Taylor Hall trade.

    But I guarantee you this.Name a trade that the Oilers win, and you will also have named a trasde that will never happen.

    Name a Taylor Hall trade that the Oilers lose, and you too will have named a trade that will never happen. Fact is that virtually none of the trades we name here ever happen.

  138. jonrmcleod says:

    I can see Chiarelli trading Hall this summer for a much needed top-pairing defenseman. Now with that being said, I wouldn’t be surprised if Hall begins next season with the Oilers and leads them to their first playoff appearance in over a decade.

  139. Woodguy says:

    McSorley33:
    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    I remember when someone had the temerity to suggest trading RNH for an elite top D.

    Burned at the stake in here.

    Taylor Hall is a great offensive player but he has become a no fly zone in here.

    Which “elite D” ?

  140. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Name a Taylor Hall trade that the Oilers lose, and you too will have named a trade that will never happen. Fact is that virtually none of the trades we name here ever happen.

    E5

  141. Centre of attention says:

    Lowetide: E5

    I probably sound like an idiot but I have never understood this reference, can someone explain?

  142. frjohnk says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Fact is that virtually none of the trades we name here ever happen.

    “virtually none” is not an acceptable phrase.

    “non zero chance” is though

  143. Woodguy says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Did anyone in particular say that? Not saying he should have 80 points but he has fallen way below production level you’d expect from him, even with plugs.
    Not looking to blame him or anything, just think that there’s more to it than Leon ran out of gas. Or there should be.

    I’ve unfollowed about 30 people on Twitter and blocked another 10 due to the Hall hate.

    it’s getting to me and I unload here sometimes due to no character limit.

    Like DeadFogManWakingOfWarts but very different.

  144. frjohnk says:

    Centre of attention: I probably sound like an idiot but I have never understood this reference, can someone explain?

    Eklund from hockeybuzz

  145. Woodguy says:

    Centre of attention: I probably sound like an idiot but I have never understood this reference, can someone explain?

    LT is a big fan of Bingo, but is a terrible speller.

  146. hunter1909 says:

    Less that 24 hours away from Lowetide and when I return it’s all trade Hall talk.

    With a tenth fucking year out of the playoffs, Oiler fans will have a long summer to discuss the state of the team.

    Not me.

    It’s simply too far out of my mental imagination to think of Hall getting traded out of the fan led spite around here.

    Spring is sprung where I am, which makes a big change from childhood memories of endless blizzards/wolf attacks during 50 below weather while being sent to the local Texaco to purchase cigarettes for a housebound alcoholic mother.

  147. LoDog says:

    Hall is great player, hope he sticks around.

    Whatever trades happen no one here or the MSM will have seen it coming. Chia runs a tight ship.

  148. Statsman says:

    Woodguy: I’ve unfollowed about 30 people on Twitter and blocked another 10 due to the Hall hate.

    it’s getting to me and I unload here sometimes due to no character limit.

    Like DeadFogManWakingOfWarts but very different.

    I don’t really have a hate on for Hall at all. As I have previously stated, I think he is a good/great player whose time has come to move on. The well may be poisoned w.r.t. to him.

    Also, I just feel that he is the best asset we have to get what we really need…a huge upgrade on defence.

    I know that trading him will leave a large scoring void, but I think that it may be easier to fill that void (whether it be through one player or more) than it is to obtain top-pairing D help. Just my opinion.

  149. Centre of attention says:

    Guys if they trade Hall WHERE will McDavid live?

    Do you heartless ass-hats want our beloved young star to be homeless??!

    Why I never!

  150. Statsman says:

    Centre of attention:
    Guys if they trade Hall WHERE will McDavid live?

    Do you heartless ass-hats want our beloved young star to be homeless??!

    Why I never!

    He can move in with Stamkos.

  151. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Caramel Batman: The article is spot on, identifying the defense first strategy of every team in the league.

    And the reason every team plays defense first is because the points structure incentivizes it.

    And so the solution is to change the point structure.

    This is obvious.Every single intelligent person who has thought about the issue agrees.There is 100% unanimity on the issue.

    And yet I have never heard a MSM member suggest it.Conclusion:They are stupid.

    I have never heard someone in the NHL suggest the idea.Conclusion.They are stupid.

    It is incredible that they will tweak all sorts of things that are either never going to make a difference or are much larger changes (3-on-3 hockey) but they won’t even discuss the most obvious solution, a solution that is guaranteed to work.

    Much as I avoid using words like “stupid” I sure don’t find much to disagree with here. Absolutely spot on to the cockamamie points structure driving defensive — or more to the point, “neutral” — play. It is the bane of the game.

  152. Walter Sobchak says:

    Not to make excuses, and maybe some out there can help.

    LT mentioned usage and I’m spitballing here but I think that has a lot to do with what’s hurt there Oilers the back half of the season.

    I have no analytics to back this up

    Here it goes.

    I’m thinking the Oilers as a team , more importantly certain players are burnt out & playing hurt.

    The last home games I was at, I watched Nurse when he was in the line up, he looked gassed at times, made bad decisions when none needed to be made and lost more than a few one on one battles.

    Now, Reinhart comes up from the minors and is making Nurse look like the Oilers made the wrong decision in who should have been in the minors.

    More importantly, I think Hall has had to carry at least one line mate most of the season, played extra time on multiple shifts and has taken some wicked hitsvat least once per game for the last 6 or so.
    Now Hall gets hit hard at least once a year but he’s getting tagged even more lately and one has to think if he’s processing the game well right now.

    The teams travel, team injuries, the flu bug that took out players, the extra ice time, the working harder not smarter because of different line mates.

    The team to me looks gassed. I have nothing to back that up with other tan my eyes but I’ve been going to games since 96 and this team still has tones of try just no energy.

  153. Todd Macallan says:

    Off topic currently, but how about Ethan Bear making the WHL WC 1st All Star Team?
    Between he and Paigin, not to mention a fantastic rookie season by Caleb Jones, Chia / Bob Green appear to have had a pretty good first draft in terms of Dmen. If waiting 5 yrs post draft is key, year 1 was about a good a start as possible for these 3.

    One can only hope the pro scouting dept can learn a lesson in evaluating Dmen from the amateur side.

  154. Water Fire says:

    Caramel Batman: The article is spot on, identifying the defense first strategy of every team in the league.

    And the reason every team plays defense first is because the points structure incentivizes it.

    And so the solution is to change the point structure.

    This is obvious.Every single intelligent person who has thought about the issue agrees.There is 100% unanimity on the issue.

    And yet I have never heard a MSM member suggest it.Conclusion:They are stupid.

    I have never heard someone in the NHL suggest the idea.Conclusion.They are stupid.

    It is incredible that they will tweak all sorts of things that are either never going to make a difference or are much larger changes (3-on-3 hockey) but they won’t even discuss the most obvious solution, a solution that is guaranteed to work.

    It makes perfect sense. Bettman and his employees aren’t mandated to make the game better or good or better or good for fans. It’s a business, so he’s mandated to make more money for his employers.

    In reality many of the teams won’t be great no matter what, excellence is rare and hard to achieve. The way to keep marginal fan bases engaged at all (with the long term goal of increasing revenues by various ways) is to have as many teams in the hunt for as long as possible.

    And the Canadians who can’t get enough foot the bills and their teams have trouble getting into the playoffs.

    It’s ugly but certainly my experience with big companies.

  155. frjohnk says:

    Todd Macallan:
    Off topic currently, but how about Ethan Bear making the WHL WC 1st All Star Team?
    Between he and Paigin, not to mention a fantastic rookie season by Caleb Jones, Chia / Bob Green appear to have had a pretty good first draft in terms of Dmen. If waiting 5 yrs post draft is key, year 1 was about a good a start as possible for these 3.

    One can only hope the pro scouting dept can learn a lesson in evaluating Dmen from the amateur side.

    For guys picked outside the top 100 they have had fantastic draft+1 years.
    I’ve mentioned it a few times, Pronman said in redraft from last year Paigin goes 2nd round.

    Hopefully they can take another good step forward next year.

    I’m guessing Jones and Bear will be candidates for their countries for making WJC teams this December.

  156. Thorin says:

    I’m surprised no one has suggested simply letting every team into playoffs.

    Right now we have 16 teams in the west of which 8 make the playoffs. These 8 then play three rounds of 4-7 games each. There are 4 teams that play 4-7 games (knocked out in the first round), 2 teams that play 8-14 games (knocked out in the second round), and 2 teams that play 12-21 games. Total games is 56-98.

    Switch it to 16 teams playing best of five instead of seven, you end up with one extra round and total games is 90-150, played in more cities so could compress the schedule.

    Leave the Stanley Cup Final as seven games. Add in the 3 point system, and you have more playoff revenue, reward for offense and an easier view of what tram ranks where, and all teams stay engaged to the end of the regular season.

  157. Professor Q says:

    Isn’t that what the season is for?

    I mean, perhaps it might also put more emphasis on Conference Championships, although you might have to shave off maybe a month or two of regular season games.

  158. StixMalone says:

    Statsman: He can move in with Stamkos.

  159. Ronald Chevalier says:

    Centre of attention,

    I have a room in my basement, only a few blocks away as well! As wicked as that would be… I would still rather keep Hall.

  160. Jaxon says:

    Answers to 10 Ways to Improve Next Season
    1. A: If it happens 2 years in a row, somebody should be fired.
    2. A: No answer except maybe adding greater depth and playing in the other end more so they’re not blocking shots.
    3. A: Sign Demers, Re-sign Gryba and Oesterle, Keep Fayne, Trade for Paliotta, Convince Paigin to come over to start in AHL for 4 solid NHL D and 2 good bottom pair NHL D with lots of callup depth options:
    Sekera – Demers
    Klefbom – Fayne
    Davidson – Gryba/Paliotta (mid-season?)
    Depth/Callups: Nurse/Reinhart/Oesterle/Paigin/Paliotta/LaLeggia
    3. A: Part 2: Sign Brent Burns next summer, by then you’ll also know more about what they have in Nurse, Reinhart, LaLeggia, Oesterle, Paigin (wow, they have a ton of LH depth) and Paliotta.
    4. A: Convince a big Russian D Ziyat Paigin with an NHLe of 47ts to break his KHL contract.
    5. A: Pick speedy RH RW Puljujarvi at 2nd or 3rd overall.
    5. A: Pick speedy RH RW Puljujarvi at 2nd or 3rd overall.
    6. A: Puljujarvi.
    7. A: Not a praying man.
    8. A: Only one trade involving nothing too worrisome going the other way (actually unloading a burden in Korpoikoski): Korpikoski, Caleb Jones and one of Pakarinen (would hate to see him go), Moroz, Platzer or Chase to CBJ for Paliotta and Rychel.
    9. A: Not likely, thankfully.
    10. A: See trade above.

Leave a Reply

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