THE LORD’S BURNING RAIN

I am not sure how many will agree with me, but in this blog’s estimation signing Andrej Sekera in free agency was a quality addition. The only FA signing in recent years that was close? Benoit Pouliot. Peter Chiarelli will be active again this summer and his shopping list is once again substantial.

chiarelli ma

CHIARELLI’S SUMMER

  1. Top-pairing D to partner with Klefbom (Jason Demers)
  2. Scoring winger from free agency (Lee Stempniak)
  3. Offload unwanted contracts (Lauri Korpikoski)
  4. Backup goalie (Jhonas Enroth, but may cost too much)
  5. Re-stock the system partly through college and CHL signings (Benik, but also Winquist, et al)
  6. Build up the system (especially forwards) via draft (Laine, Tyler Benson)

I thought it might be an idea to check what is out there on the free-agent market as we get closer to July 1. Edmonton could be active in the goalie market, on defense, and while we are at it let’s check the forwards too.

GOALIES

  1. Jhonas Enroth ($1.25 million) .943 even-strength SP
  2. James Reimer ($2.3 million), .935 even-strength SP
  3. Karri Ramo ($3.8 million), .917 even-strength SP
  4. Antti Raanta ($750,00), .916 even-strength SP

This is all via nhl.com and nhlnumbers. Chiarelli will no doubt kick tires on a backup—someone who could take over the starting job if necessary—and that seems like it should be Enroth or Reimer. Edmonton doesn’t need to hire a backup, but the small sample size that is Laurent Brossoit’s  NHL season suggests the GM should look for some cover.

RIGHT-HANDED DEFENSEMEN

  1. Jason Demers ($3.4 million) 61, 7-16-23 (21 minutes a night) EVShA/60: 26.98 (No. 37)

I don’t see another great fit among the righties, perhaps there is a lesser defender with potential but honestly it is not a strong group. Depending on the ask from Demers, he might be available and I do think he is a nice fit.

LEFT-HANDED DEFENSEMEN

  1. Brian Campbell ($7.1 million) 78, 6-25-31 (22 minutes a night) EVShA/60: 26.90 (No. 36)
  2. Keith Yandle ($5.25 million) 78, 5-40-45 (22 minutes a night) EVShA/60: 28.59 (No. 88)
  3. Alex Goligoski $4.6 million) 79, 5-31-36 (23:52 a night) EVShA/60: 29.68 (No. 124)
  4. David Schlemko ($625,000) 64, 6-13-19 (18:33 a night) EVShA/60: 26.24 (No. 23)

In looking at the options, perhaps Edmonton might be better off signing a lefty and then dealing from (further) strength—dealing a lefthander for a righty. Campbell is long in the tooth but remains effective, and he could serve as a terrific mentor. If the Oilers can acquire Travis Hamonic for a lefthander? Well, the option is there if Chiarelli signs someone on this list.

RIGHT-HANDED CENTERS

  1. Steven Stamkos ($7.5 million) 77, 36-28-64. 49.9FO% 51.5Corsi
  2. David Backes ($4.5 million) 78, 20-23-43. 51.9FO% 51.0Corsi

I include Stamkos only because he is going to be available and Peter Chiarelli should push as hard as possible to get him to Edmonton. Can you imagine winning the lottery and Stamkos? Heavens to Murgatroyd that would have heads exploding all over the league! Anyway, clearly fantasy but if there is a chance we can entertain the idea.

lucic

WINGERS

  1. Milan Lucic ($6 million) 77, 17-34-51. 58.9Corsi
  2. Teddy Purcell ($4.5 million) 72, 13-25-38. 51.3Corsi
  3. Kris Versteeg ($4.4 million) 73, 13-23-36. 57.0Corsi
  4. Loui Eriksson ($4.25 million) 78, 28-31-59. 51.6Corsi
  5. David Perron ($3.8 million) 71, 12-24-36. 52.6Corsi
  6. Troy Brouwer ($3.67 million) 78, 16-20-36. 48.8Corsi
  7. Lee Stempniak ($850,000) 79, 18-32-50. 47.2Corsi

I have mentioned this a few times, have had people push back so want to be clear again. I think the Oilers are set (and then some) with Hall, Pouliot and Maroon on the port side, and if those three men return no one should be complaining. That said, I wonder about Milan Lucic and his possibly being available. Peter Chiarelli’s stated template:

  • Chiarelli: “Even when I was in Boston it wasn’t about putting fighters in the lineup, it was about your team approach, your team toughness, your collective mentality. And that can apply to us, also. Having said that, there are teams in our conference and our division that play a certain style. You don’t have to fight fire with fire, but you have to be able to push back.”

Lucic and Brent Seabrook represent (to me) players that may both be available (Seabrook has a NM but has been linked to Edmonton) and carry significant risk. When have the conversation about this summer, I think we all talk about ideal situations, but there are some heavy contracts that could be on the run this summer. I think the Oilers will be at least somewhat vulnerable to the Lucic’s and the Seabrook’s—famous names with a lot of what makes them good now having been spent. Dangerous summer.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

So far this spring, we have talked about players who might be traded by the Oilers. In reality, we may be looking at a ‘switching out’ of a current Oiler and bringing in a free agent replacement. Say the Oilers acquire Travis Hamonic for Jordan Eberle, and then replace 14 with Loui Eriksson. Or, Taylor Hall is sent away for a grand return on defense, and Lucic replaces him. Or Nuge—Backes and on it goes. For the record, I would prefer seeing Hall, Nuge and Eberle return, Pouliot too. Anyone above appeal to you as a possible future Oiler? I like Demers, would prefer to keep the current forwards.

ALEX LYON

Saturday night, Elliotte Friedman mentioned Lyon’s decision was 48 hours (or so) away, so that puts the press release inside the Dave Jamieson Show. If the young man signs with Edmonton (he has posted SP’s in the .930s last two winters) he could land damn near anywhere on the pro depth chart this fall. He appears to be a good get, although that conference Yale plays in seems to feature some electric save totals. Button down conference, for sure.

mcdavid goal det 2

PROJECTED 50-MAN LIST (37)

  1. G Cam Talbot. No. 1 next season.
  2. G Laurent Brossoit. Projects as NHL backup/AHL starter, signed a two-year deal.
  3. G Eetu Laurikainen, AHL backup, he is signed for next year.
  4. D Oscar Klefbom, likely top pairing, needs to stay healthy.
  5. D Andrej Sekera, top 4D, important part of the team.
  6. D Brandon Davidson, top 6D, maybe even top 4D if he continues on current track.
  7. D Mark Fayne, I question Oilers ability to find three better RH this summer.
  8. D Darnell Nurse, probably top 6D next season, ideally in Bakersfield.
  9. D Eric Gryba, UFA. I believe he will sign with the Oilers.
  10. D Griffin Reinhart, may spend another year in the minors. Could be dealt.
  11. D Andrew Ference, they will buy him out (if able). LTIR is my guess.
  12. D Jordan Oesterle, AHL D, NHL time. RFA. Suspect he signs.
  13. D Joey Laleggia, AHL D matriculating.
  14. D Dillon Simpson, AHL D, matriculating.
  15. D Ben Betker, AHL D, matriculating.
  16. C Connor McDavid, Giant.
  17. C Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, quality NHL center.
  18. C Leon Draisaitl, emerging NHL talent.
  19. C Mark Letestu, checking NHL C.
  20. C Anton Lander, they may find a buyer.
  21. C Jujhar Khaira, he is a good bet to make the roster in the fall.
  22. C Bogdan Yakimov, a chance he comes back. Has NHL tools, speed concern.
  23. C Kyle Platzer, AHL C matriculating.
  24. L Taylor Hall, impact NHL player. Many fans want him gone.
  25. L Benoit Pouliot, underrated by many. Trade rumors.
  26. L Patrick Maroon, big winger has been exceptional since arrival.
  27. L Lauri Korpikoski, Oilers should try to offload him this summer.
  28. L Matt Hendricks, checking NHL W.
  29. L Jere Sallinen, you can never have too many Finns.
  30. L Mitch Moroz, AHL winger/enforcer, matriculating.
  31. L Braden Christoffer, rugged winger, matriculating.
  32. R Jordan Eberle, scoring winger could be in play.
  33. R Nail Yakupov, gone baby, gone.
  34. R Zack Kassian, probably part of the future in a top 9F role. RFA.
  35. R Iiro Pakarinen, suspect he will push for a spot next fall. RFA
  36. R Anton Slepyshev, talented winger should push for NHL time.
  37. R Greg Chase, minor league winger, matriculating.

I think the Oilers list of no-trades is fairly short at this point (I will guess McDavid, Hall, Draisaitl, Klefbom, Nurse) but as I have mentioned a few times it will depend on the ask from the team trading their quality defender. Let’s imagine the Peter Chiarelli white board and what the ask might be:

  1. Erik Karlsson (Ottawa isn’t trading him)
  2. P.K. Subban (Montreal isn’t trading him)
  3. Alex Pietrangelo (Taylor Hall)
  4. Travis Hamonic (Ryan Nugent-Hopkins)
  5. David Savard (Jordan Eberle)

Now don’t go crazy, I am just using this as an example. All of the veteran forwards are in play, and so would be outside the no-trade list Chiarelli would have established internally. So when we talk about the players who are not going anywhere, they are basically the McDavid cluster—97, Leon, Nurse. Makes sense to me.

AND THE LORD RAINED DOWN BURNING SULFUR

The MSM took Todd McLellan’s Saturday postgame and ran with it, openly pushing for ‘Christmas in July’ headlines involving the breakup of Edmonton’s most famous boy band.

  • Robert Tychkowski: If Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins were trying to make a case that they should stay together here, they lost it. This team just played itself into another major overhaul. Source

I understand the idea of torching the team again, but am hopeful Peter Chiarelli takes a more measured approach to the summer. All these losses give him another fabulous draft pick, and he could trade down—or out—for his badly needed defensive help. He could also trade one of the $6 million dollar men and sign Demers, effectively doing a tweak as opposed to blowing it up.

  • Bob McKenzie:  “What it suggests to me is that there’s a price to be paid for all the losing in Edmonton, and that the core group of players on this team may well be what I would say – use the word – damaged. By damaged I guess I mean having the wrong mindset, psyche, psychologically. Just the constant losing, revolving door of coaches and management regimes, and just seemingly a bunch of players individually and then almost collectively losing their way.” Source

It is a bad time to be heading to market, with your prime bullets being devalued by another losing season. The standings suggest there has been no improvement this season, but the goal differential and the 5×5 scoring suggest real progress. I would argue that the Oilers could have been better even with all of the injuries—but playing Lauri Korpikoski and Darnell Nurse so much impacted the season in a negative fashion.

This point in time reminds me of the summer Edmonton fired Tom Renney. He was making progress, and it has taken many years (four!) to get back to what Renney had idling in the driveway. Keep your powder dry, Peter Chiarelli, these are good hockey players and you do not want to be the man who trades Taylor Hall for 60 cents on the dollar. This town will never forgive, no matter what the scribes are writing today. And that’s for sure.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

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

  • Scott Burnside, ESPN. Are my Bruins going to miss the playoffs? Stamkos injury.
  • Andrew Stoeten, JaysNation. A nice start from Stroman but what about his hair?
  • Sunil Agnihotri, Copper & Blue and The SuperFan. Peter Chiarelli’s summer.
  • Guy Flaming, Pipeline Show. Oil Kings lose three at home, plus Alex Lyon.

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

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151 Responses to "THE LORD’S BURNING RAIN"

  1. kinger_OIL says:

    – Great post LT!. Oil have 2 time-frames to really change team: off-season and next deadline.

    – Use some of the bullets in off-season:
    a) Draft Pick, and some combo of the non-Steve Austins (hi Yak)
    b) Cash available for BPA on D
    c) One of the Steve Austins
    d) Offer-sheet “representation” to get a good young guy via trade

    Thats 4 new players, better than the guys on roster/new balance

    – Plus lay the ground work for blockbuster trade when team is better next year @ trade deadline

  2. flyfish1168 says:

    I can forgive trading Taylor only if it is for Karlsson or OEL. JMHO

  3. sumaclab says:

    Provide me with a defence that can compete then tell me Hall etal are the rotten core. I call bullshit on anyone who believes you can compete at this leel with one hand tied behind your back. That includes Hall,RNH,Ebs and Yak. We wasted 4 years on JS trying to develop him into an NHL dman. We had Sekera for most of this season and Fayne. 2 experienced NHL dmen. The rest either rookies of 6/7 dmen. You want a clear fair evaluation of how our team did? We were crap. Because when your defence looks like ours did this season you get hosed every night. Never mnd Talbot had his head up his ass in the first 40 games of the year. Never mind you run 9,20 and 22 centers. IMO. We did amazingly well considering most nights we were competing with a lineup where half the players should be in the AHL still learning the pro game. TM should be coach of the year for even getting 30 wins out of this team. My goodness give your collective heads a shake and thank goodness that we have a GM with some sense and wont listen to the pundits and trade away the cow for a bag of magic beans.

  4. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Plenty of players from that list appeal.

    I wonder if the Rangers would consider Yakupov for McIlrath. Fills team needs on both ends.

    If the team could sign Demers, add McIlrath, then trade one of the lefties for a righty (eg. Nurse for Hamonic) does that set the blue going forward?
    Sekera-Demers
    Klefbom-Hamonic
    Davidson-Fayne
    Reinhart-McIlrath?

    And then I would add Backes, Enroth, replace Korpikoski with Stempniak and call it a day.

    Last offseason I preferred Neuvirth and Enroth over giving up the assets for Talbot. I’m fine with Talbot’s play this year but Neuvirth and Enroth both had great years. Was also stumping for Stempniak last fall when he slipped through the cracks.

    I wonder if his play this year has placed him in similar territory to Pouliot two summers ago, though and he costs a team 3m x 3 years or so now.

  5. flyfish1168 says:

    sumaclab:
    Provide me with a defence that can compete then tell me Hall etal are the rotten core. I call bullshit on anyone who believes you can compete at this leel with one hand tied behind your back. That includes Hall,RNH,Ebs and Yak. We wasted 4 years on JS trying to develop him into an NHL dman. We had Sekera for most of this season and Fayne. 2 experienced NHL dmen. The rest either rookies of 6/7 dmen. You want a clear fair evaluation of how our team did? We were crap. Because when your defence looks like ours did this season you get hosed every night. Never mnd Talbot had his head up his ass in the first 40 games of the year. Never mind you run 9,20 and 22 centers. IMO. We did amazingly well considering most nights we were competing with a lineup where half the players should be in the AHL still learning the pro game. TM should be coach of the year for even getting 30 wins out of this team. My goodness give your collective heads a shake and thank goodness that we have a GM with some sense and wontlisten to the pundits and trade away the cow for a bag of magic beans.

    I agree. Can you imagine what Hall would have been able to accomplish with a good D.

  6. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    There is a lot of crazy coming out of Ottawa these days.

    Hoffman seems like the obvious “acquire low” candidate given how they’ve treated him despite his even strength scoring for the past couple years.

    Karlsson is the prize though. I know it seems like he’s untouchable, but I’m really not convinced.

    I mean obviously it will take a fair chunk to get him, but isn’t this usually exactly the type of situation that leads to a 3 for 1 type trade? Top notch future hall of fame player on a bad team in exchange for a very good player and 2 or more other pieces? Even if those pieces have some value?

    Would you be willing to part with Hall and Nurse plus prospect/pick for Karlsson (with pick/prospect filler perhaps)? It wouldn’t be the offer I put on the table right away…. but if that’s what it took would you go there?

    Disgruntled owner who thinks he has the answers when he clearly doesn’t have a clue, publicly feuding with a generational talent. Crazier things have happened.

  7. wheatnoil says:

    Ah, second year Renney. I wasn’t a fan of the firing but wasn’t outraged either. In hindsight, I perhaps should have been more outraged. To think that team would be the high water mark for the next few years.

  8. SoCaloil says:

    I don’t for one second believe Chiarelli will torch the whole thing after spending a full season evaluating.
    He’s going to make some drastic changes..no doubt…but not a full on torch.

  9. Jethro Tull says:

    Well, statistically or by probability, we’re not making the play-offs next year either.

    We really needed this year to be the stepping stone to greater things next year. I’m with TMac – the final BoA in Rexall, Saturday HNIC, HoF alumni in the stands, and this is the progress you decide to show the hockey world?

    The Flames came to the rink with the mindset of ruining our night and we let them succeed. I think something very dangerous has set in – apathy. There’s players mouthing the right things to the MSM, then going out and mailing it in, or playing hard but going lone gunman and ignoring the coaches.

    It is possible to really like players and also recognize the fact they aren’t helping your cause.

  10. wheatnoil says:

    SoCaloil:
    I don’t for one second believe Chiarelli will torch the whole thing after spending a full season evaluating.
    He’s going to make some drastic changes..no doubt…but not a full on torch.

    I’m curious to see if he torches his management group.

  11. Adam Wu says:

    The Oilers have a positive goal differential when Taylor Hall is on the ice. If only Hall could play 60minutes per game, the team would be in the playoffs!

    The Oilers problem is and remains what happens on the ice when their top players are on the bench.

  12. Oilspill says:

    The want-it list is great but nobody wants to come to our lovely city. There is no doubt that a player needs to be paid at least 10% or more than any other place. This leaves the undesirable UFA’S(that nobody wants) and trades for a player with no NMC in their contracts.
    We’ve got rid of some dead weight but we will struggle getting the upper end players to sign here.

  13. rickithebear says:

    Demers:
    15-16: bot 2nd comp
    14-15: Bot 3rd comp
    13-14: 3rd comp
    12-13 upper 3rd comp
    1st comp?
    I do not think it means what you think it means!

  14. pells says:

    Not sure what to think anymore. As much as I try to not care anymore I can’t help myself. I feel like the players must feel. Beaten down and depressed. It truly affects my everyday mood. I can only imagine the players mental state. Big changes have to be made just for that reason alone. The Leafs are icing an AHL team and are playing a better game then we are. We need to stop bowing down to these guys because of their draft placement. Peter you have the reigns, do as you please. Demers, Pietrangelo would be a good start. You failed to mention Ladd again. I think he would be a good fit

  15. Melman says:

    Based on his roster, record and replacement, the Renney firing made little sense. I’ve always wondered if it was internal politics. The was the start of the end – it’s just been a frightfully long ending.

    Thanks for the Kimmy pic LT – it’s been a long while. She was beauty to behold

  16. Ducey says:

    Sure hope no decisions are made based on the last game.

    Your team is out of it. You are playing another out of it team and you have not played in a week.

    Pretty hard to get dialed up no matter what the coach says.

  17. Professor Q says:

    kinger_OIL:
    – Great post LT!.Oil have 2 time-frames to really change team: off-season and next deadline.

    – Use some of the bullets in off-season:
    a) Draft Pick, and some combo of the non-Steve Austins (hi Yak)
    b) Cash available for BPA on D
    c) One of the Steve Austins
    d) Offer-sheet “representation” to get a good young guy via trade

    Thats 4 new players, better than the guys on roster/new balance

    – Plus lay the ground work for blockbuster trade when team is better next year @ trade deadline

    No one has yet explained to me what wrestling has to do with hockey.

    I’ve asked a plethora of times!

  18. Melman says:

    Ducey,

    totally disagree. You’ve been sitting around all week, playing a tired team, last BOA at Rexall, HNIC where you always look stupid. Whatever the standings are you’d like to think there is some pride and leadership in that room somewhere.

    Edit: I do agree I wouldn’t base a summer’s worth of decisions on one game

  19. Caramel Batman says:

    Ducey:
    Sure hope no decisions are made based on the last game.

    Your team is out of it.You are playing another out of it team and you have not played in a week.

    Pretty hard to get dialed up no matter what the coach says.

    Plus the outplayed the Flames handily at even strength for two periods.

    This narrative that they didn’t show up to play is just so much bullshit from the unwashed.

  20. jasontheschoolteacher says:

    I understand how our lack of offensive puck moving defencemen have really hurt our forwards, but in my opinion the whole group is not being held accountable enough. At this stage mistakes like losing your man on the back check, not competing every night is getting old. Yet we still seem to have this next year will be better with this group. It is time for a major overhaul in every area of this team. Too many of the fans and media are in love with individual players. I am more concerned how “team” is doing. So I guess it will never be the fault of Hall, RNH, Eberle or Yak why this team continues to stink. They are part of the problem too! Tweaks will not help this team, overhaul will.

  21. mustang says:

    I have faith in PC and TMac, they are winners, they know what needs to be done. What’s happening now hasn’t worked at all, not even close. The insanity needs to stop.

  22. JimmyV1965 says:

    sumaclab,

    Well said. Our beyond awful defence affects all facets of the game. I’m sure there are more than a few teams in the AHL with better defence than ours. With only two legit NHL dmen, neither being a top-pairing guy, you can argue our defence is mediocre by AHL standards.

  23. Henry says:

    wheatnoil:
    Ah, second year Renney. I wasn’t a fan of the firing but wasn’t outraged either. In hindsight, I perhaps should have been more outraged. To think that team would be the high water mark for the next few years.

    The way Renney was fired was appalling. Management by indecision. But it helped the Oilers on to McDavid et al.

  24. Clay says:

    I’ve said this before, and I’ll probably say it again at some point, but the problem in Edmonton isn’t the losing. The problem is that the team is much less than the sum of its parts.

    I like to use the Coyotes as an example. Granted they have a genuine piss-cutter in OEL. But the rest of the blueline behind him is not exactly the 2000 Jersey Devils. Most people would need hockeyreference.com just to identify them. And the forward group is a couple rookies, an old man, and some spare parts. Yet they’re 10 points up on the Oilers. I would argue their team is greater than the sum of its parts.

    The Oilers consistently under-perform and under-produce. Blame the coaching changes, blame the youth, blame the refs (which is constantly happening around here, but is a losers excuse), blame the Old Boys Club – doesn’t matter.

    I’m with Mr. Mackenzie (above) – through no fault of their own, the players on this team have been beaten down so much for so long, it’s questionable if they can ever recover and become a winning team.

    We all thought it would be impossible to ruin Hall, and here we are 6 full years into his career, and by his own admission there have been maybe 3 games that mattered in that whole time.

    Do we want to go down this road with McDavid?

    Packaging up the Hall cluster would bring back one helluva blueline. If the belief is that you need a lineup like Keith – Seabrook – Hjalmarsson to compete for a cup, the Oilers are not going to get that during the McDavid era by drafting and developing. And they’re not going to get it by trading away picks, parts, and prospects.

  25. Aitch says:

    The Unicorn is dead this summer. Chia doesn’t seem like the guy to chase mythical beasts. Instead, I think he’ll use the excess pieces to bulk up the blueline. Hall, Drai, McDavid, Nuge, Ebs, Yak, 2016 1st. Two of these are gone next season. You don’t even have to replace them with corresponding pieces up front. Chia and Todd have alredy shown that they believe Maroon can ride shotgun in the Top 6, so, as long as the Oilers can get one of the top 3 spots in the lottery, you could have a deadly Top 6 next season. Imagine a first line of Maroon, McD and 2016 1st with Hall, Nuge & Drai as your second trio. It shouldn’t be too hard to build a bottom six from the remains and a little cap space.

    That leaves Ebs, Yak and possibly Pouliot as trade chips to acquire some help on the blueline. Let’s assume that Chia can entice a least one decent blueline via free agency, then those assets should be able to bring in another one. Let’s also assume that he can use the excess forward depth to address the blueline without having to deal from the little depth we do have on the blueline, you could have the two new guys joining Klef, Sekara, Davidson and Fayne on the blueline to start the season.

    what would Ebs, Oesterle and a 2nd get you? How about Yak, Reinhart and a pick? The latter doesn’t seem like much more than some spoiled magic beans, but we’ve seen worse packages deliver experienced players before.

  26. digger50 says:

    This blog is sanctuary.

    Sanctuary from the mass Oilers fans and media who are preying on a team trying to climb out of a hole. As Pells mentioned, I wonder what it is like to be a player under this scrutiny, to be labelled a looser, to be responsible for saving this franchise. It would be so much easier to be elsewhere, drafted or traded.

    The fans want to see values they are not willing to hold themselves to. Support each other, stick up for each other, never give up when faced with adversity. It’s a long road. The recent attack on Ebs shocked me.

    What I see is more and more hockey pieces coming together. More cards to play, more talent to work with. I see a team that could and will win ten more games next year. These guys need to hold thier heads up and enjoy some hockey. Playoffs? Yes, it’s going to happen.

  27. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Patrick Roy ripping into his core.
    Is there some way to get Duchene and Barrie out of there?

  28. JimmyV1965 says:

    Caramel Batman: Plus the outplayed the Flames handily at even strength for two periods.

    This narrative that they didn’t show up to play is just so much bullshit from the unwashed.

    Totally agree. We dominated game in the first, spent the second period short handed, then fell behind 3-0 early in the third. That’s when the boys gave up. I think that’s where we can see the losing culture. This team has been so beat up for five years that they give up under difficult circumstances. We were the better team, but after years and years of losing they do lack intestinal fortitude to come back.

  29. Woogie63 says:

    UFAs fixing this this team is a false dream. We are in the running …if we overpay …. For the Pouliot and Sekera type players, but not he game changers. If you can play anywhere why play in Edmonton? Remote, 100,000 miles in a plane, cold, bad team, probably miss the play-offs again, Canadian crazy fans (that might be a plus to some).

    We want to make a significant leap that a Lucic or Stamkos can provide. BUT I am settling in for a draft and develop AND a trade my problem for your problem 2016/17.

  30. vinotintazo says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    Patrick Roy ripping into his core.
    Is there some way to get Duchene and Barrie out of there?

    Nuge + yak for barrie and Duchene Sodeberg… lol.

  31. LMHF#1 says:

    I really am torn as to which sort of team would do the most winning:

    1 – Stick with the core and add specifically on the blue line and secondary scoring for the bottom six.

    2 – Refocus the team on McDavid. Keep Draisaitl as 2C. Surround them with veterans geared to their sorts of games and an experienced 3C (Nielsen, Backes). Use assets to get a blue line that can move the puck to McDavid and Draisaitl like Visnovsky could to Hemsky.

  32. Centre of attention says:

    Bakersfield Condors ‏@Condors · 27s27 seconds ago

    Niklas Lundstrom has been reassigned to the @NorfolkAdmirals.

    Incoming Lyon?!?!

  33. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Chia’s plans for April should include:

    1. Take Patrick Roy fishing
    2. Go to Vegas with Eugene Melnyk

  34. rickithebear says:

    Forward even scoring and Forward comp Rank:
    Mcdavid #1 2.78 EVP/60; mact
    Hall #14 2.25 tambo
    Draisatl #15 2.24 MacT
    Hoffman #24 2.12
    ——————————————– top 30 results
    Pouliot #39 2.03 MacT
    Eberle #71 1.90 Tambo
    after 13gm hurt 54gm 2.30 EVP/60 would rank #13
    ——————————————- 1st line results
    RNH #200 1.40 Tambo
    Maroon #205 1.38 PC
    with Mcdavid 14gm 2.60 EVp/60
    yakupov #256 1.20 Tambo
    kassian #257 1.19 PC
    —————————————– 3rd line results
    Cracknell #304 1.00 PC
    pakarinen #313 .097 MacT
    Korpikoski #315 .096 PC
    ————————————— 4th line results
    Hendricks #355 0.77 MacT
    Letestu #378 0.61 PC
    Lander #398 0.21 Tambo
    ———————————— 13-14 fwd results

  35. Jaxon says:

    For me Chad Johnson looks like he might be the best fit as Talbot’s backup.

    He’s played well in Buffalo this season and is a former goalie of Chiarelli’s (where he posted a .925% over 27 games). He’s got decent numbers (although his time in NYI was not good) with a .916 career SV% and a career .924 ES SV%.

    Talbot and Johnson have played 3 seasons together already so there should be a comfort level there. He was born in Saskatoon, raised in Alberta and played in the AJHL so maybe they could nab him for a relatively cheap contract on a hometown discount. Could they get him for under $2M?

    I’d go 3 years at $2M or less per for sure and Talbot / Johnson is your duo for Talbot’s whole contract. Expansion may be the worry on that deal though. Then again, I think every team is only to lose one player per expansion team max, so there could be worse scenarios.

  36. season not played says:

    Saturday nights game was definitely frustrating.

    I turned it off in the first period after Taylor Hall burst in on the LW and the Oiler blueline caused him to fire a harmless shot from the perimeter into the crest of the goalie.

    Well, not completely harmless, it was probably a corsi event.

  37. Jethro Tull says:

    Caramel Batman: This narrative that they didn’t show up to play is just so much bullshit from the unwashed.

    The narrative that this team is one or two players away from play-off hockey is what’s bullshit.

    You know what teams like LA and CHG think of handily out-playing teams but still losing? I think there’s plenty of pressers where Sutter or Quenneville have demonstrated their loathing of moral victories.. They like to win and will do almost anything to do it.

    So, TMac is also a subscriber, seeing as he didn’t say in the presser “yeah, we were beaten 5-0, but I thought we were unlucky on some goals, the guys played hard.”

    No, he ripped them. Why do you think he did that, when he has been pretty mellow all season long?

    And 2-0 down after two is now the new ‘handily out-played.’ Stellar.

  38. Jaxon says:

    I totally agree with your assessment and hope for a measured response. I like a Demers signing along with Chad Johnson (my preference). They could keep all the forwards and D. Demers and healthy Klefbom, Davidson will make a world of difference. Pushing Fayne and Sekera down to 2nd pairing with Klefbom Demers as 1st pair is a huge deal. Keep Gryba for at least one more season. They have depth on the left side. The number of freakish injuries that hit Edmonton this season was bizaare and a healthy team with Demers, Johnson could certainly make the playoffs. I even hope Yakupov returns but if he goes I hope he gets a right D returned. Even if it is a close to NHL ready prospect, like a Madison Bowey. I like Sekera as a player and am okay with his salary, I just really think his NMC could be an issue down the road with all the solid LD prospects pushing for work. If Paigin, Klefbom, Nurse and Reinhart all reach their potential in the next 2 years and we need to pay McDavid and Draisaitl and Nurse, then they’ll wish they could move Sekera more easily.

  39. rickithebear says:

    Melman:
    Ducey,

    totally disagree.You’ve been sitting around all week, playing a tired team, last BOA at Rexall, HNIC where you always look stupid.Whatever the standings are you’d like to think there is some pride and leadership in that room somewhere.

    Edit: I do agree I wouldn’t base a summer’s worth of decisions on one game

    Pride and leadership as a factor is the bull shit you hear from!
    Fat bastard MSM!

    Also from Hockey welfare:
    players who shit play cost teams playoffs or the cup.
    but egos wont let them understand that it is not the whole team or leaderships fault.
    who come on Screen and spout the leadership BS as well.

    One of the few effective leadership moves I ever experienced.
    A senior provincial championship game.
    We played above our heads and got to the game. (according to coach)
    Each player fit the system we ran.

    Our captain looked at us,
    “they are big, they are fast, They are more skilled, they have better depth, we cannot win this game, So Fuck them!”

    We laughed and won!

  40. John Chambers says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    Patrick Roy ripping into his core.
    Is there some way to get Duchene and Barrie out of there?

    We hired a veteran like Chiarelli so that he won’t buckle under pressure but rather exploit other vulnerable GMs.

    The Oilers will need to make bold moves but don’t count on a liquidation sale of our top talent.

  41. RPG says:

    I love the Snagglepuss reference – “Heavens to Murgatroyd!” I though you’d have an “Exit stage left” or did I miss it? Perhaps a future article this summer?

  42. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Jaxon:

    I’d go 3 years at $2M or less per for sure and Talbot / Johnson is your duo for Talbot’s whole contract. Expansion may be the worry on that deal though. Then again, I think every team is only to lose one player per expansion team max, so there could be worse scenarios.

    There is absolutely no reason to sign a backup goalie for 3 years.

    I realise LB has had a rough 5 games, but he’s still an excellent prospect, no reason to give up entirely on him here.

    2 years is the max deal for a certified quality backup goaltender, which is what Johnson/Enroth are. No one is giving them the starting reigns this off season.

    And less than 2m for sure. Probably less than 1.5 million.

    Over paying on money and term on depth positions is why we don’t have cap space to fill important holes. Bottom 6 wingers, the whole fourth line, #6/7/8D, and backup goalie should all be around $1m/player.

  43. rickithebear says:

    Jethro Tull: The narrative that this team is one or two players away from play-off hockey is what’s bullshit.

    You know what teams like LA and CHG think of handily out-playing teams but still losing?I think there’s plenty of pressers where Sutter or Quenneville have demonstrated their loathing of moral victories..They like to win and will do almost anything to do it.

    So, TMac is also a subscriber, seeing as he didn’t say in the presser “yeah, we were beaten 5-0, but I thought we were unlucky on some goals, the guys played hard.”

    No, he ripped them.Why do you think he did that, when he has been pretty mellow all season long?

    And 2-0 down after two is now the new ‘handily out-played.’Stellar.

    You mean Todd McEakins.
    Outcoached by Deboer in SJ
    Outcoached by nelson with a lesser team!

  44. Jaxon says:

    If what you’re getting in a trade for a right D won’t be much better (if at all better) than Demers, then why make the trade? Why lose what could be a 40 goal scorer for a Hamonic, when Demers is just as good. the only good answer to that is that Hamonic’s contract is really cheap. But I also don’t see Demers fetching a lot more. Demers might be $1M more, but replacing Eberle’s offense might also be $1M more. Eberle might be a 40g player or more with McDavid. Trying finding that on the open market and you will fork over $7M and you might not find that player at all.

  45. rickithebear says:

    Todd Mceakins looked at the roster and asked them to play a system that hinders pocession and Results.

    Does not fit our talent Tambo and MacT brought in!

  46. John Chambers says:

    Jaxon,

    My dream trade is Sekara + 31OV + 1/2 M retained in exch for Hamonic.

    Solves the R-L balance, is net-neutral for expansion draft exposure, and rids us of what could be a negative value contract 2-3 years from now.

  47. G Money says:

    Last years badly deficient team had a laundry list that looked like this, in descending order of priority:

    1. Fix the goaltending – need a solid starter; goaltending is half the game, unless you don’t have it, then it’s 100%. (Some would say fix the coaching, but the coaching doesn’t matter with this roster, it really doesn’t – don’t you have enough proof of that yet?)

    2. Fix the defense – keep Jeff Petry and add another two Top 4 defenders. One of the new guys needs to be able to run a powerplay.

    3. Fix the C situation. You need to have minimum two capable centres, not “one and mud” FFS.

    4. Fix the bottom 6 – you can’t have your bottom 6 give away everything your top 6 earned. They at least need to break even most of the time on the ice.

    5. Change the balance in the top 6 (to get the right blend of playmaking, sniping, and Ryan Smythosity – grit and skill together) – to be able to play a more “Western Conference” game.

    Of course, you won’t actually know whether this team can play such a game until you FIX THE GODDAMNED DEFENSE.

    6. Address the depth – years of promoting players early not only starved the NHL team, it starved the prospect pool

    *** So what happened? ***

    1. Chia managed to fix the goaltending – the proof is in the pudding, as the goal differential is vastly better, and it’s almost all on the goaltending IMO

    2. By losing Jeff Petry for nothing, and signing Sekera, the Oilers are running to stand still. The defense is as broken as it was last year, and the needs list is still two Top 4 D. In fact, it’s tougher than last year, because last year we needed a leftie and a rightie, and lefties are easier to get. With Petry gone, now we need two righties. Ideally, still need one of them to be a PP QB.

    Thanks MacT, you are the gift that keeps giving! (To other teams)

    There is some improvement in the underlying numbers, which I would attribute to the new guy, plus coaching (I’m disappointed in the PP, but do not otherwise believe that coaching is the problem).

    3. The C situation. By sheer dumb luck (the only place the Oilers have it), the C situation IS fixed. McDavid, Draisaitl, and RNH? Fuckin’ hell. Chia, please don’t fuck this up.

    4. Bottom 6? Letestu and Korpikoski did not help. The latter almost certainly made it worse.

    5. Change the balance (sometimes interpreted by the dumb as “the core is rotten”). I believe this is already done by adding Maroon. I would NOT trade ‘the core’ unless the return is worth it, which will be possible but extremely hard to do. We have no idea how good this core could be until we fix the D.

    6. Depth … is as depth does?

    *** So where are we today? ***

    The laundry list is similar – which is why the team results are eerily similar.

    1. Two RHD, thank you very much. One is better than none, but it’s not enough. Legitimate Top 4 only, please.

    2. C – Chia, this is one of the reasons you replaced MacT. Please don’t fuck this up.

    3. Need some capable bottom 6 veterans with a mix of size, skill, defensive savvy, and adequate ass hair. Korpi needs to go. Letestu is OK as 4C, but need to recognize he can’t play 3C when injuries strike. Just can’t. Need C depth. Derek Roy? Marcobello? Whatever. Kassian? Khaira? Yak2? Decisions, decisions.

    4. Fix the backup goaltending. Far easier to do.

    5. F – one or more of the Top 6 may be going, but let’s trade them only to fix priority #1, not because they are broken. (It’s possible that this team *has* broken one or more of them, but we won’t know that until we actually see them with a legit team with a legit hope of winning something). Otherwise, Chia, please don’t fuck this up.

    Holy Gords, I hope this list isn’t the same next year.

  48. StixMalone says:

    Since the horn at Rexall isn’t working I can quote Linda Ronstadt.

    Well I lay my head on the railroad track
    Waiting on the Double E
    But the train don’t run by here no more
    Poor poor pitiful me

  49. LMHF#1 says:

    G Money:

    1. Two RHD, thank you very much.One is better than none, but it’s not enough.Legitimate Top 4 only, please.

    2. C – Chia, this is one of the reasons you replaced MacT.Please don’t fuck this up.

    3. Need some capable bottom 6 veterans with a mix of size, skill, defensive savvy, and adequate ass hair.Korpi needs to go.Letestu is OK as 4C, but need to recognize he can’t play 3C when injuries strike. Just can’t.Need C depth.Derek Roy?Marcobello?Whatever.Kassian?Khaira?Yak2? Decisions, decisions.

    4. Fix the backup goaltending. Far easier to do.

    5. F – one or more of the Top 6 may be going, but let’s trade them only to fix priority #1, not because they are broken.(It’s possible that this team *has* broken one or more of them, but we won’t know that until we actually see them with a legit team with a legit hope of winning something).Otherwise, Chia, please don’t fuck this up.

    I keep coming back to whether this is really enough.

    The constant negative experiences and lack of anything to incentivize completing the season have trained in behaviors that need to be un-trained. These result in game like Saturday’s and can impact the very best players in any sport.

    Can these guys be un-trained? I don’t know and it likely varies person-to-person.

  50. Ducey says:

    Centre of attention:
    Bakersfield Condors ‏@Condors· 27s27 seconds ago

    Niklas Lundstrom has been reassigned to the @NorfolkAdmirals.

    Incoming Lyon?!?!

    Hopefully, but they did have 3 G’s there (Eetu, Lundstrom, Rimmer).

    Lundstrom had an .872 save% in 4 BAK games since coming over so they may have just sent him for more seasoning/ seen enough and be planning on firing him into the sun.

  51. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Professor Q: No one has yet explained to me what wrestling has to do with hockey.

    I’ve asked a plethora of times!

    They share a common referee pool

  52. Frank the dog says:

    From a metrics point of view we have a group of very talented players who had a terrible season with a bizarre schedule addled by ongoing injuries to key players, who gave up in the last period of the 3rd last game of the season.
    The metrics do not take into account the social dynamics of the team, and FFS don’t blame the coach. If there are one or more players on the team that represent a negative social dynamic regardless of who is coaching them, then they must go in order for this team to succeed. Period.
    The second reason that people must go is if they have asked out, which plays into the first.
    The third reason, of course, is non-performance, which is clear to all who follow the appropriate metrics on this blog.
    Skill, on its own, isn’t enough.

  53. John Chambers says:

    Frank the dog,

    Well phrased

  54. McSorley33 says:

    Caramel Batman,

    I assume you did not watch our head coaches press conference?

    Or you did not understand what he was saying?

  55. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce McCurdy: They share a common referee pool

    “Oh My God! Did you see that? ‘Ultra’ Maroon distracts the ref while The Kassian Assassian hits Alex ‘The Weasel’ Burrows with a chair given to him by a fan! The ref turns back and counts the pin! Also, two minute bench minor to the Oilers for scoring a goal that can’t be overturned on video evidence.”

  56. McSorley33 says:

    Ducey,

    Lots of teams are out of it…..

    Some teams work their tails off.

    Character.

  57. Jethro Tull says:

    rickithebear: Pride and leadership as a factor is the bull shit you hear from!
    Fat bastard MSM!

    Also from Hockey welfare:
    players who shit play cost teams playoffs or the cup.
    but egos wont let them understand that it is not the whole team or leaderships fault.
    who come on Screen and spout the leadership BS as well.

    One of the few effective leadership moves I ever experienced.
    A senior provincial championship game.
    We played above our heads and got to the game. (according to coach)
    Each player fit the system we ran.

    Our captain looked at us,
    “they are big, they are fast, They are more skilled, they have better depth, we cannot win this game, So Fuck them!”

    We laughed and won!

    I’m not sure if your for leadership and will to win or against it.

  58. StixMalone says:

    Jethro Tull: “Oh My God!Did you see that?‘Ultra’ Maroon distracts the ref while The Kassian Assassian hits Alex ‘The Weasel’ Burrows with a chair given to him by a fan!The ref turns back and counts the pin!Also, two minute bench minor to the Oilers for scoring a goal that can’t be overturned on video evidence.”

    I wonder if Ed Whalen would be saying this is ” a ring-a-ding-dong dandy ” and finishes with ” in the mean time and in between time that’s it for another edition of Stampede Wrestling….

  59. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Ducey: Hopefully, but they did have 3 G’s there (Eetu, Lundstrom, Rimmer).

    Lundstrom had an .872 save% in 4 BAK games since coming over so they may have just sent him for more seasoning/ seen enough and be planning on firing him into the sun.

    Lundstrom was a warm body to fill in for Brossoit. Got a 5th rounder for Nilsson (who played for St. Louis yesterday btw), better be a good pick cuz that trade likely scuttled Bakersfield’s playoff chances. Lundstrom’s contract expires at the end of this season and I don’t think there’s a 1% chance he comes back.

  60. Pajamah says:

    LMHF#1: I keep coming back to whether this is really enough.

    The constant negative experiences and lack of anything to incentivize completing the season have trained in behaviors that need to be un-trained. These result in game like Saturday’s and can impact the very best players in any sport.

    Can these guys be un-trained? I don’t know and it likely varies person-to-person.

    People throw around the Chicago/Detroit/Pittsburgh model like it is something the Oilers can still attain.

    Pessimists see it as the Thrashers/Leafs model.

    I think the parallels to the New York Islanders circa 2014-15 are pretty damn similar, and likely what the Oilers should hope for.

    De Haan, Hamonic were our Nurse/Klefbom. They’ve grown, and added Boychuk and Leddy (Sekera and Demers/Vatanen/Hamonic)

    Josh Bailey, Okposo, Strome, Tavares, Lee, Clusterfuck

    Could just as well be Eberle, Hall, RNH, Draisaitl, McDavid, Kassian (threw Kassian and Cluckerbuck for shits and giggles)

    Halak or Talbot are league average goalies.

    Also a team, that prior to adding 2 good defenseman and a capable starter, that never surpassed 80 points per season since drafting a generational talent.

  61. Bruce McCurdy says:

    StixMalone: I wonder if Ed Whalen would be saying this is ” a ring-a-ding-dong dandy ” and finishes with ” in the mean time and in between time that’s it for another edition of Stampede Wrestling….

    There’s a malfunction at the junction.

  62. G Money says:

    LMHF#1,

    If you’re going to account for the effort in Calgary (which was, realistically, one terrible period), you need to account for the three games just prior to that, where the Oilers gave the three extremely tough California teams with tons to play for all they could handle – horrendous refereeing and all.

    Two of those teams blew the Flames out of the water just prior to this game.

    What does that tell you about the Flames, that they were more ‘up’ for a completely meaningless game
    against a fellow bottom feeder but completely out of their league against two good teams with skin in the game?

    It’s embarrassing that people are somehow lauding that team. They are back in the toilet where they belong. Just a few days ago, I saw one of those ‘man games lost’ charts. The chart was positioned by injury count, and coloured by in/out of playoffs. The Oilers of course were WAY over on the right (high injury), and out of the playoffs. Unsurprisingly, there is a distinct pattern of correlation between health and success, and there IS a logical basis for assuming health->success causation there.

    Way over on the left, there were a cluster of teams that were basically completely healthy, but all out of the playoffs. The person posting the chart had annotated it, and one of their annotations was to circle that cluster of three teams and write ‘inexcusable’ on it. Yup. (The Flames were one of those teams)

    A lot of the fan bitterness from this game comes from the fact that it is such an ugly loss to a bitter rival – I know mine does. I live in Calgary. I fucking HATE the Phlegms.

    Part of the problem is that it isn’t a bitter rivalry for the players. There hasn’t been a meaningful game between these two teams in a decade, nor a playoff game in Rexall during that time either.

    I sure as hell hope that Chia doesn’t take the pathetic third period in Calgary and use that as the basis for his decision making on this squad.

    That would be a short-sighted and data-starved process, and that unfortunately is a huge part of what got us here.

  63. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    GOLD, BRUCEY, GOLD!

  64. Jethro Tull says:

    G Money: I sure as hell hope that Chia doesn’t take the pathetic third period in Calgary and use that as the basis for his decision making on this squad.

    I sure as hell hope he does! And so should you, G!

    TMac’s main gripe was that the team as a whole worked so hard to get certain things out of their game and to get good habits, that that period nearly wiped out everything.

    Consistency! It’s no good playing three good games against tough opponents, then laying that dog egg against Calgary, and that includes burying your chances when you’re dominating possession.

    So yeah, I hope Chia takes that period and thinks “who the hell is checking out after 40? Who’s in the whole game? Who can be coached to concentrate and who’s thinking about drinks after the game?”

  65. Jethro Tull says:

    Does anyone here work with Flames fans?

    I do. Let me tell you, reminding them that we won the stats battle and were handily out-playing them after two isn’t working out for me.

    They’ve even stolen “there’s always next season” from me!

  66. LMHF#1 says:

    G Money:

    If you’re going to account for the effort in Calgary (which was, realistically, one terrible period), you need to account for the three games just prior to that, where the Oilers gave the three extremely tough California teams with tons to play for all they could handle – horrendous refereeing and all.

    For me, it is how far they fall when they fall. Also how inconsistent the effort can be. It’s one thing for the execution to be off, but not having a consistent effort and being able to shut down the motor so easily is rather appalling.

    They were excellent in California. That makes the effort against Calgary MORE galling, Not less. That team that played LA the way they did could beat anyone. Give half that effort against the Flames and you win going away.

  67. kinger_OIL says:

    Professor Q,

    – Ah. Must be different generations. Back in my youth, Steve Austin was the 6 million dollar man: He was Bionic, and cost $6MM to be bigger faster stronger…

    – RNH Hall Eberle: all make 6 million: Steve Austins: get it? Not the Stone Cold Steve Austin

  68. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Caramel Batman: Plus the outplayed the Flames handily at even strength for two periods.

    This narrative that they didn’t show up to play is just so much bullshit from the unwashed.

    Who cares about even strength when your special teams are getting totally fucking crushed. You want to talk about not showing up, the powerplay unit is a good place to start. They gave up 4 shots in 4 minutes, and a 5th in the exact second that the 2nd penalty expired (to me that’s a shorty, scored in the 120th second of a 2-minute penalty, but that’s not how they score it for whatever reason). Either way the powerplay was outshot and outscored on the night.

    By my scoring, the powerplay went minus-2 for 2 (and I saw someone else here make that exact reference, was it G? That is the right way to measure special teams in my view)

    On Saturday they weren’t so special. There has always been a strong relationship between Shorties Allowed and what we at Copper & Blue used to call HUAs. (“Head Up Ass “, usually an individual assignment but sometimes applicable to the team as a whole on a particularly ugly sequence of pain.)

    Also, if the Oilers were handily outplaying the Flames at evens, would it be too much to ask that they execute a simple line change? Talk about HUA…

  69. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Who cares about even strength when your special teams are getting totally fucking crushed. You want to talk about not showing up, the powerplay unit is a good place to start. They gave up 4 shots in 4 minutes, and a 5th in the exact second that the 2nd penalty expired (to me that’s a shorty, scored in the 120th second of a 2-minute penalty, but that’s not how they score it for whatever reason). By my scoring, the powerplay went minus-2 for 2 (and I saw someone else here make that exact reference, was it G? That is the right way to measure special teams in my view)

    On Saturday they weren’t so special. There has always been a strong relationship between Shorties Allowed and what we used to call HUAs at Copper & Blue. (“Head Up Ass “, usually an individual assignment but sometimes applicable to the team as a whole on a particularly ugly sequence of pain.)

    Also, if the Oilers were handily outplaying the Flames at evens, would it be too much to ask that they execute a simple line change? Talk about HUA…

    Hallelujah! Sing it, brother!

    Hum-Hmm, I mean; I agree 100%, Bruce.

  70. James says:

    Professor Q,

    https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Steve_Austin_(character)

    You’re thinking of the wrong Steve Austin, but Bruce’s answer was better.

  71. Professor Q says:

    Bruce McCurdy: They share a common referee pool

    Ah, I see. That many people sharing a pool can’t be sanitary.

  72. Ducey says:

    McSorley33:
    Ducey,

    Lots of teams are out of it…..

    Some teams work their tails off.

    Character.

    I don’t see any teams that had a week off just to play three meaningless games at year end.

    Its not uncommon for teams that don’t play for a while to come out flat. Add in the fact the season is over and you have the very definition of playing out the string.

    Besides, they could have had a few breaks and been right in the game.

  73. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy: By my scoring, the powerplay went minus-2 for 2 (and I saw someone else here make that exact reference, was it G? That is the right way to measure special teams in my view)

    Yep, that was me.

    My ‘key stat’ for the game was pretty simple:

    Flames went 1 for 6 on the PP

    Oilers went -2 for 2 on the PP

    That was the game.

    Bruce McCurdy: to me that’s a shorty, scored in the 120th second of a 2-minute penalty, but that’s not how they score it for whatever reason

    Interestingly, my ‘goal summary’ which takes the goals straight out of the NHL play by play has it recorded as a shortie.

  74. Centre of attention says:

    Gene Principe ‏@GenePrincipe · 33s34 seconds ago

    “We could have played Bobby Orr and Paul Coffey last game and it wouldn’t have mattered.” T.McLellan on @EdmontonOilers game vs. Calgary.

    Lol. Todd is done. Just completely done.

  75. G Money says:

    LMHF#1: It’s one thing for the execution to be off, but not having a consistent effort and being able to shut down the motor so easily is rather appalling.
    They were excellent in California. That makes the effort against Calgary MORE galling, Not less. That team that played LA the way they did could beat anyone. Give half that effort against the Flames and you win going away.

    That’s right.

    And they did it down one top 6 forward and two of their best D to boot.

    So wholesale changes?

    Crazy.

    Fix the obvious gaps in the roster – two top 4 D and some bottom 6 players who can play.

    That’s the point.

    If you put a real NHL D and a few more bottom 6 players who don’t bleed the team dry night after night on this team, actually give them a realistic shot at beating any team on any given night … if at that point, the top 6 forwards everyone suddenly seems to love to hate start coming up short at that point – yeah, trade the mall.

    Bet you it won’t be a problem. And I’ll bet you anything that the MSM idiots who are braying for blood right now will suddenly be talking about ‘character’ and ‘clutch’ and all the other bafflegab that surrounded two-time Mem Cup champion Taylor Hall and ‘clutch tying World Cup goal’ Eberle. About how McDavid changed everything.

    About anything but the real issue, which is fixing the fucking roster.

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

    Centre of attention:
    Gene Principe ‏@GenePrincipe· 33s34 seconds ago

    “We could have played Bobby Orr and Paul Coffey last game and it wouldn’t have mattered.” T.McLellan on @EdmontonOilers game vs. Calgary.

    Lol. Todd is done. Just completely done.

    He is also factually incorrect here (shortie #1 doesn’t happen if either player is leading that breakout instead of Oesterle). In fact they likely would have even scored on that PP with either of those two defensemen QBing from the point.

    Todd may be angry but that’s no reason to lie! (He says with a giant tongue placed firmly in cheek)

  77. G Money says:

    Jethro Tull,

    Yes, I live in Calgary. Have kept the faith for the 20+ years I’ve been here.

    Perhaps remind them about how all of them were crowing ‘rebuild over’ last year.

    And yet their completely healthy shitty fucking ‘rebuild over’ team barely finished ahead of an Oiler team running on fumes and baling wire the whole season.

  78. Jaxon says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    You’re may be right. I’m erring on the high side of caution (in both price and term) and hope they can sign their FAs cheaper. If Talbot is your number one I don’t see the harm in signing a quality backup for longer term, especially if the price is right. At what price would you sign Johnson for a longer term?

    There are no guarantees that Broissot becomes anything more than a decent AHL goalie. If Brossoit doesn’t turn out, then you’re stuck searching for a quality backup that can push for more starts again. Johnson’s numbers are as good as almost any other available goalie out there. Hell, it might be wise to sign him for 4 or more years. If he is playing solid and challenging Talbot in Talbot’s final year, it bodes well for negotiations if the Oilers have some insurance for the next season in a veteran goalie. Johnson may not have the starting goalie position in Buffalo next season, but he has played 44 games with a .919 SV%. That is a pretty good stat line for a starting goalie. Only 10 less games and a higher save percentage than our anointed #1. Talbot 54GP, .917 SV% and we’re paying Talbot $4.16M.

    I think half that, at $2.08M, for a backup that can challenge your starter and even take over in the event of an injury or talent implosion as we well know can happen (see Dubnyk, Scrivens, Fasth, Nilsson, etc) would be money well spent. A backup isn’t someone you can really shelter, especially if there is an injury or back to back games so spending money on a backup isn’t quite the same as spending money on 4th liners or 5th-7th D.

  79. Adam Wu says:

    It’s possible that this team *has* broken one or more of them, but we won’t know that until we actually see them with a legit team with a legit hope of winning something).Otherwise, Chia, please don’t fuck this up.

    We are talking human beings with biological plasticity here. There is nothing here that can be “broken” so irreversibly that it cannot be fixed.

    Learned helplessness had be unlearned.

    A “losing culture” can be replaced.

    The panacea is WINNING.

    Even if you suspect some of the old “core” are “broken”, all that means is that you should not rely on them to be the critical cogs in your plan for success. Treat them instead as very good complimentary pieces to place around your new core, or trade if the return is right. Which, aside from Hall, is what they always were anyways, and how you should have been treating them from the beginning.

    And when you start winning, don’t be surprised when you’re pleasantly surprised at how quickly that which you thought “broken” spontaneously fixes itself.

  80. Professor Q says:

    Centre of attention:
    Gene Principe ‏@GenePrincipe· 33s34 seconds ago

    “We could have played Bobby Orr and Paul Coffey last game and it wouldn’t have mattered.” T.McLellan on @EdmontonOilers game vs. Calgary.

    Lol. Todd is done. Just completely done.

    He finally has seen the truth of the real state of the team the past ten years.

  81. G Money says:

    Jethro Tull: I sure as hell hope he does! And so should you, G!

    Sorry Jeth, but no fucking way.

    Short sighted, reactionary, and vindictive decision making is exactly what got us here today.

    When the Oilers beat the shit out of the Flames at the Dome late in the season in Krueger’s year (I was at that game, it was fun), it meant abso-fucking-lutely nothing.

    When the Oilers went on a tear led by the ‘young guns’ of Gagner, Cogliano, and Nilsson, and actually came within spitting distance of the playoffs – it meant abso-fucking-lutely nothing.

    And this beatdown means abso-fucking-lutely nothing.

    Because the roster, as it has been in each of the cases above, was broken.

    And Lowe and MacT and Tambo reacted (or didn’t react) to the short term instead of to the fundamentals.

    And unless you keep your head, and make smart roster decisions based on all the evidence and not one bad period, the fucking-over of this team will continue.

    One hopes that Chia is the first one to break out of that mold.

    Otherwise, Gords help us all.

  82. G Money says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!: He is also factually incorrect here (shortie #1 doesn’t happen if either player is leading that breakout instead of Oesterle). In fact they likely would have even scored on that PP with either of those two defensemen QBing from the point.

    Ha ha, 100% true.

    Unless he means Bobby Orr or Paul Coffey now. Cause they probably suck.

  83. G Money says:

    Adam Wu,

    Yes, I made a similar point in a later post, though not with the thoroughness of explanation as to the process.

  84. G Money says:

    Sound like Backes is hurt, joining Hamonic and Demers on the Oilers roster, errr, I mean the injured list.

    I don’t know about you guys, but I sure as hell hope that next season Katz remembers to make his donation to the Referees Association Social Fund and the NHL Schedule Makers Retirement Fund, or whatever the fuck it is he forgot to do this year.

  85. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    G Money:
    Sound like Backes is hurt, joining Hamonic and Demers on the Oilers roster, errr, I mean the injured list.

    I don’t know about you guys, but I sure as hell hope that next season Katz remembers to make his donation to the Referees Association Social Fund and the NHL Schedule Makers Retirement Fund, or whatever the fuck it is he forgot to do this year.

    Don’t forget Stamkos!

  86. Water Fire says:

    What Chiarelli does will be driven a lot by outside forces – UFA’s and other GM’s.

    If uFA’s like the Oilers there won’t need to be as much movement right now – the cap can accommodate a lot for a bit still if bad contracts are dumped. If GM’s don’t like the Oilers they’ll keep Yak, a 6M and the pick for another season.

    If UFA’s frown then we’ll see trades. He won’t stand pat with this and nobody is going to try and sucker him like has happened in the past to the Oilers, he’ll patiently find a deal he can palate.

    I think Pete is smart enough to have a minimum price and roll with what is possible instead of looking for a blockbuster that isn’t there. Any improvement is an improvement, heading in the right direction.

  87. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Hall-Backes(signed UFA)-Drai
    Pouliot-McDavid-Eberle
    Maroon-Nuge-Stempniak (signed UFA)
    Hendricks-Letestu-Pakarinen
    Lander

    Sekera-Demers (signed UFA)
    Klefbom-Hamonic (acquired for Nurse)
    Davidson-Fayne
    Reinhart-McIlrath (acquired for Yak)

    Talbot
    Enroth (signed UFA)

    ?

  88. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    One thing I want to say about the GD improvement. It’s somewhat misleading. This year the bottom feeders have much better GDs than last season. Oilers are still firmly at the bottom of the pack. It’s not like the GDs suggest they should have a much better record than they do.

  89. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Also at least former Coach of the Year Patrick Roy is having a meltdown at his top players. Really vindicates his well-deserved, flukey Jack Adams Award. So there’s always that.

  90. Lowetide says:

    Jason Gregor ‏@JasonGregor 41s41 seconds ago

    McLellan with positive note re: Klefbom saying it (injury/infection) should not be an issue next year at training camp. #Oilers
    0 retweets 1 like

  91. blainer says:

    G Money:
    LMHF#1,

    If you’re going to account for the effort in Calgary (which was, realistically, one terrible period), you need to account for the three games just prior to that, where the Oilers gave the three extremely tough California teams with tons to play for all they could handle – horrendous refereeing and all.

    Two of those teams blew the Flames out of the water just prior to this game.

    What does that tell you about the Flames, that they were more ‘up’ for a completely meaningless game
    against a fellow bottom feeder but completely out of their league against two good teams with skin in the game?

    It’s embarrassing that people are somehow lauding that team.They are back in the toilet where they belong.Just a few days ago, I saw one of those ‘man games lost’ charts.The chart was positioned by injury count, and coloured by in/out of playoffs.The Oilers of course were WAY over on the right (high injury), and out of the playoffs.Unsurprisingly, there is a distinct pattern of correlation between health and success, and there IS a logical basis for assuming health->success causation there.

    Way over on the left, there were a cluster of teams that were basically completely healthy, but all out of the playoffs. The person posting the chart had annotated it, and one of their annotations was to circle that cluster of three teams and write ‘inexcusable’ on it.Yup.(The Flames were one of those teams)

    A lot of the fan bitterness from this game comes from the fact that it is such an ugly loss to a bitter rival – I know mine does.I live in Calgary.I fucking HATE the Phlegms.

    Part of the problem is that it isn’t a bitter rivalry for the players.There hasn’t been a meaningful game between these two teams in a decade, nor a playoff game in Rexall during that time either.

    I sure as hell hope that Chia doesn’t take the pathetic third period in Calgary and use that as the basis for his decision making on this squad.

    That would be a short-sighted and data-starved process, and that unfortunately is a huge part of what got us here.

    This is an EXCELLENT post G. Well said. If they come out strong in the last two games and win.. that last game is a distant memory for me.

    This season was flushed with the lack of D at the beginning of the season.. But more so this season was completely derailed be injuries.

    At this point we are most likely finishing DFL again and have a great shot at drafting top three.
    I really want Laine as he can be sent to the AHL for development and is gonna be a beast. To me he is the new Jagar.

    We absolutely have to get some vetern D. I would love a Spurgeon and Hamonic or Pietrangelo. I would rather give up on one of the 6 million dollar men to fix the D than trade Laine.

    And then sign Stamkos or Backes if we make the big trade up front. Boy would either one of those two add some much needed vet leadership !!

  92. Obiwan Eberle says:

    1st pick and Yak for Hamonic and Nelson
    Nuge and Ebs for Larsson and Zajac

    Sign Stempniak
    Sign Backes

    Hall – Drai – Backes
    Pou – Jesus – Maroon
    Nelson – Zajac -Stemper
    Hendo – Testy – Kass
    Paks

    Sekera – Hamonic
    Klef – Larsson
    Nurse – Davidson
    Reinhart

    Talbot
    Johnson

  93. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    blainer,

    I like Laine plenty but let’s hold the horses with the “new Jagr” talk I mean, Jagr has as many points as Hall in less games at age 43. He is top 3 all time in scoring. That’s a huge stretch to compare a prospect to him in that fashion.

  94. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Obiwan Eberle:
    1st pick and Yak for Hamonic and Nelson
    Nuge and Ebs for Larsson and Zajac

    Is the first pick first overall? You’re trading Matthews for Hamonic and Nelson?

    Second deal the Devils decline easily, in my opinion.

  95. Adam Wu says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    One thing I want to say about the GD improvement. It’s somewhat misleading. This year the bottom feeders have much better GDs than last season. Oilers are still firmly at the bottom of the pack. It’s not like the GDs suggest they should have a much better record than they do.

    How do the GDs from the bottom feeders compare to the GD for the playoff bubble teams, this year vs last.

    It could be that all the bottom feeders are improving together, relative to the rest of the league.

  96. blainer says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”:
    blainer,

    I like Laine plenty but let’s hold the horses with the “new Jagr” talkI mean, Jagr has as many points as Hall in less games at age 43. He is top 3 all time in scoring. That’s a huge stretch to compare a prospect to him in that fashion.

    Yup really being a half glass full on this one. For me though we really don’t have much developing on the farm so I would be over the moon if we end up with this player.

    We are really going to see what Chia is made of this off season for sure. Jeebus I hope he gets it right. We need more vets on this team badly especially on D.

  97. Obiwan Eberle says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    Either Matthews or Hall goes…

    i would sweeten the Devils deal with someone to make it work, but you may be right.

  98. kinger_OIL says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    – I’ve kind of written off Harmonic as an opportunity: seems Harmonic for Trouba fits the bill for both teams. Trouba from Michigan, Harmonic going home. Need to trade D for D…

  99. Jethro Tull says:

    G Money,

    If we take all the evidence, it’s not just one bad period though, is it? We don’t get to cherry pick, and we can’t ignore that period because we don’t like it and it’s a small sample size. It’s a small piece of a larger picture. In fact I think the picture may be so big, you would have to stand on fucking Pluto to see it. (I don’t mean Mickey Mouse’s dog. That would be cruel.)

    That period exemplified everything TMac was talking about – lack of concentration, missed assignments, apathy to the outcomes of said missed assignments, lack of concentration, inability to stick to game-plan or to change tactics to ensure overall strategy is successful, lack of concentration (did I say that already?). You get the gist.

    So while I agree that we can’t take one period of one game and shit can the whole team, we also can’t play three good games in a row against good teams and plan the Stanley route.

    Who knows, maybe a bit of cray-cray is what we need, within reason?

    And no need to say sorry! We’re all good!

  100. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Adam Wu: How do the GDs from the bottom feeders compare to the GD for the playoff bubble teams, this year vs last.

    It could be that all the bottom feeders are improving together, relative to the rest of the league.

    Playoff bubble teams this year are around even this year. Last year there were two teams that missed that were above the cutoff.

    The top teams have lower differentials this year vs. last.

    New bottom feeders have come down this year. But you see a familiar name in the bottom 3 still.
    http://www.sportingcharts.com/nhl/stats/team-goal-differential/2014/

  101. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    kinger_OIL:
    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”,

    – I’ve kind of written off Harmonic as an opportunity: seems Harmonic for Trouba fits the bill for both teams.Trouba from Michigan, Harmonic going home.Need to trade D for D…

    That’s why I was suggesting Nurse for Hamonic.

  102. blainer says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: That’s why I was suggesting Nurse for Hamonic.

    I think that is a fair trade depending how NY views Nurse. They may want a sweetener.

  103. Jaxon says:

    John Chambers,

    I like that, except it leaves the left side a bit short on experience (and durability) for the next couple seasons with a total of 239 total NHL games between Klefbom, Davidson and Nurse at the moment. Yikes. I think they have to hold onto Sekera until they have 3 proven top 4 LD. Maybe that arrives sooner in one of the former mentioned players or even Paigin, Reinhart or LaLeggia, but I don’t think you can let Sekera go until they prove themselves. Also, Sekera has a NMC that becomes a 15 team modified NMC on July 1st, 2019, so they may be stuck with him until then regardless. Unfortunately, that is a bit late to deal with their cap crunch (summer of 2018). At least Fayne will be off the books in the summer of 2018. That’s why I feel they need to be stocking up with RD prospects as well as Demers, simply for their contract values and a chance at a future stud RD.

  104. Alpine says:

    Sekera + for Hamonic and a contract might work. Nikolai Kulemin maybe? Isles shed salary, get a replacement D, Oilers lessen their LHD and get out of a NMC, Sekera gets to ride out his prime on a Cup contender. Seems like a win-win for all involved.

    If you can find a way to trade Kulemin or Pouliot + Yak for Vatanen and sign him then get a cheap or short term vet LH, then you’re almost protected against losing Klef and Hamonic if they go down at the same time next season. The latter is guaranteed to happen because Oilers.

  105. blackadder says:

    The Oilers without the injuries were not a playoff team, with the injuries they became an awful team. If you’re answer to another failed season is to trade half your most talented players (the “rotten core”) than you’ve got the wrong question. Because a good player is stuck on a bad team it doesn’t mean he’s broken. Mark Messier missed the playoffs his last seven years in the league, was he broken? Or to take it back even further, the Bruins with Johnny Bucyk, Ted Green, Ed Johnton, Don Awrey were last or tied for last 8 seasons in a row – were they broken players when they carried the cup around the ice in 1970 and 72? Was Allan Stanley a broken player after missing the playoffs year after year with the Rangers and Black Hawks when he won 4 cups with the Leafs late in his. career?

    You can’t judge a player by the success of the teams they play on. If we did, Billy Carroll would be in the hall of fame.

    I’m not opposed to trading anyone, save McDavid, if the trade makes the team better. But to engage in wholesale core gutting to change a nebulous concept like “team culture” will only result in elongating a rebuild that has gone on way too long already.

  106. PaperDesigner says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: That’s why I was suggesting Nurse for Hamonic.

    That’s what I have been thinking. Nurse, best case scenario, turns into a left shot Hamonic. I would rather, for this team, have the immediate upgrade on the right side of their D.

  107. Caramel Batman says:

    McSorley33:
    Caramel Batman,

    I assume you did not watch our head coaches press conference?

    Or you did not understand what he was saying?

    People who are inside situations often have difficulty understanding what is actually happening.

    Or.

    McClellen is a moron.

    Now I lean towards option #1, but either way you shouldn’t take his opinion as fact. It is evidence of what he thinks, it is not evidence of what is.

  108. John Chambers says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: That’s why I was suggesting Nurse for Hamonic.

    This is a good trade in theory because it advances the timeline on our D, trading away Nurse’s potential for Hamonic’s abilities in the here-and-now, BUT ….

    In the event of an expansion draft it’s a total asset management nightmare.

    Nurse wouldn’t have to be protected in the event of expansion, where as Hamonic will. Along with Sekara, Klefbom, Davidson, and Reinhart we’d have 5 D who would need to be protected.

    If we trade one of the aforementioned LHD for Hamonic it’s a 1-1 swap in terms of draft protection eligibility.

    As a result Nurse should hold much greater value as a trade asset, or better yet should not be considered a trade asset at all.

  109. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Jaxon:
    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    You’re may be right. I’m erring on the high side of caution (in both price and term) and hope they can sign their FAs cheaper. If Talbot is your number one I don’t see the harm in signing a quality backup for longer term, especially if the price is right. At what price would you sign Johnson for a longer term?

    There are no guarantees that Broissot becomes anything more than a decent AHL goalie. If Brossoit doesn’t turn out, then you’re stuck searching for a quality backup that can push for more starts again. Johnson’s numbers are as good as almost any other available goalie out there. Hell, it might be wise to sign him for 4 or more years. If he is playing solid and challenging Talbot in Talbot’s final year, it bodes well for negotiations if the Oilers have some insurance for the next season in a veteran goalie. Johnson may not have the starting goalie position in Buffalo next season, but he has played 44 games with a .919 SV%. That is a pretty good stat line for a starting goalie. Only 10 less games and a higher save percentage than our anointed #1. Talbot 54GP, .917 SV% and we’re paying Talbot $4.16M.

    I think half that, at $2.08M, for a backup that can challenge your starter and even take over in the event of an injury or talent implosion as we well know can happen (see Dubnyk, Scrivens, Fasth, Nilsson, etc) would be money well spent. A backup isn’t someone you can really shelter, especially if there is an injury or back to back games so spending money on a backup isn’t quite the same as spending money on 4th liners or 5th-7th D.

    Short answer is I wouldn’t. I would sign Johnson to a 2 year deal at most, and then at the end of 2 years I would offer him another deal if Brossoit or some other prospect isn’t ready, or somebody else hasn’t come along.

    The fact is that there are always capable backups available every year. In any given year there will be 5 or 6 guys like Johnson, Greiss, Khudobin, Enroth, Neuvirth, etc. that have a history of posting fairly respectable numbers. Heck of that list only Khudobin has had a down year. There are a limited number of elite goalies, but there are lots of decent goalies, and there are a limited number of jobs available. A GM needs to be ruthless in this regard. So if Johnson won’t accept $1.2 million, then Enroth or Greiss, or any other guy with numbers like Johnson probably will.

    Look at it this way. No one is offering Johnson a starting job next year. No one. So he’s what many consider to be a career-backup guy, which is fine. But there are only 30 backup jobs available, and there are 3 player types to fill those spots:

    1. Aging former starters like Anti Niemi.
    2. Career “reliable backups” like Johnson, Enroth, Budaj.
    3. Prospects who might become starters like Gibson.

    So in order to even get an NHL job Johnson needs to price himself competitively with all the other “career backup” types, but he’s also only got a shot at a job with a team that doesn’t want to put a prospect or a veteran starter in that job, or that has a vacancy to fill. There will virtually always be more bodies than spots in that case, so the price is going to be pushed down, and probably pushed down hard.

    In a cap world you need to find savings everywhere you can. Backup goalie is a good place to do that.

  110. Jaxon says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!,

    Good points again. I may come around to your way of thinking. Hopefully, he’ll come home for a discount and a good situation with a starter that isn’t all that proven in Talbot and they’ve had very similar careers. Johnson and Talbot have played together for 3 seasons already (not sure if that helps or hinders negotiations). Fingers crossed.

    As far as overpayments, I hope they can unload Korpikoski this summer and as much as I love Hendricks and am okay with Letestu I hope they can unload them soon too. 6.15M for your 4th line is crazy. There is $3M in savings to be had there with Khaira/Slepyshev in for Hendricks, Yakimov/Lander in for Letestu, and Pakarinen/Platzer in for Korpikoski or some other version of that.

  111. Jaxon says:

    Is anyone wondering if Peter Mueller might be worth looking at again? Especially if Kassian isn’t going to work out (I’m still hoping he does, though). Mueller hasn’t had concussion issues in a long time. From Elliotte Friedman’s 30 Thoughts:

    “1. One other player Oates may work with is Peter Mueller, who is pursuing an NHL comeback for next season. Mueller, who played 297 games with Phoenix, Colorado and Florida, spent the last three years in Europe after concussions derailed his North American career. “He’s been haunted by that injury,” agent Darryl Wolski said Monday. “When we first mentioned his name, the response was, ‘Doesn’t he have concussion issues?’” Wolski says that’s no longer the case. How much interest is there? “The word I’d use is there’s a curiosity about him. It might take time, but we’ll be patient and see how it plays out.” Mueller will be 28 in two weeks, a prime age to give it a shot.”

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/30-thoughts-adam-oates-responds-critics/

    Mueller has solid scoring chops and is a shot machine. He’s big and, if I recall correctly, he has decent speed.

  112. Jaxon says:

    Nurse for Hamonic makes me nervous. Just watching how that guy can move makes me think he is going to be a monster minute muncher in the not too distant future. Plus I think he’s a team and fan favourite already. He brings a lot to the table at only 21. He must be among the fastest players in the league. Or are my eyes deceiving me? Plus, I don’t think Hamonic is an upgrade on Demers, so why give up a potentially contender-type asset when you can get the same player for cash? Hamonic’s contract is good, but I don’t see Demers getting a huge contract that will be much more.

  113. GCW_69 says:

    Man, twitter is an interesting place these days. I don’t understand anyone saying “Trading Hall” will fix this team. At the same time, I don’t understand anyone digging in their heels and saying Hall can’t be traded.

    Fixing the defense will fix this team. If the price of fixing the defense is Hall, so be it, but it had better be a damn elite defenseman coming back the other way because the cost in offence is significant.

    Lindholm or Pietrangelo in and Hall out, for example, is a good deal imo.

    Eller, Beaulieu, and whatever in and Hall out is not a good deal, imo.

    This summer we will likely see “get good players, keep good players” and “achieve a balanced roster” collide. Navigated well, the Oilers should step out of the darkness. As long as MacT and Howson are in the room, and Lowe is hovering down the hall, the outcome of that collision could be very scary however. We wait.

  114. GCW_69 says:

    LT – no left handed centres should be considered? Frans Neilsen at the right price and more importantly the right term would be a huge benefit to these Oilers, no?

  115. GCW_69 says:

    John Chambers: This is a good trade in theory because it advances the timeline on our D, trading away Nurse’s potential for Hamonic’s abilities in the here-and-now, BUT ….

    In the event of an expansion draft it’s a total asset management nightmare.

    Nurse wouldn’t have to be protected in the event of expansion, where as Hamonic will. Along with Sekara, Klefbom, Davidson, and Reinhart we’d have 5 D who would need to be protected.

    If we trade one of the aforementioned LHD for Hamonic it’s a 1-1 swap in terms of draft protection eligibility.

    As a result Nurse should hold much greater value as a trade asset, or better yet should not be considered a trade asset at all.

    I was a big “trade Nurse for Hamonic or equivalent” supporter until the damn expansion draft reared its ugly head.

    Sans expansion draft, Nurse and the 2016 first round pick were the assets to trade to fix this team. With the expansion draft, those become two very important assets to hang on to and I think you sacrifice Eberle or Nuge to keep them.

  116. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money: Yep, that was me.

    My ‘key stat’ for the game was pretty simple:

    Flames went 1 for 6 on the PP

    Oilers went -2 for 2 on the PP

    That was the game.

    Yes that is exactly right, it was the game, & it was the key stat. Especially the Oilers PP part, the PK was about what one would expect on 6 chances. Even Calgary’s limp powerplay is gonna connect occasionally.

    But Oilers’ PP was Beyond limp. Impotent, more like it.

  117. Jethro Tull says:

    Jaxon:
    Is anyone wondering if Peter Mueller might be worth looking at again? Especially if Kassian isn’t going to work out (I’m still hoping he does, though). Mueller hasn’t had concussion issues in a long time. From Elliotte Friedman’s 30 Thoughts:

    “1. One other player Oates may work with is Peter Mueller, who is pursuing an NHL comeback for next season. Mueller, who played 297 games with Phoenix, Colorado and Florida, spent the last three years in Europe after concussions derailed his North American career. “He’s been haunted by that injury,” agent Darryl Wolski said Monday. “When we first mentioned his name, the response was, ‘Doesn’t he have concussion issues?’” Wolski says that’s no longer the case. How much interest is there? “The word I’d use is there’s a curiosity about him. It might take time, but we’ll be patient and see how it plays out.” Mueller will be 28 in two weeks, a prime age to give it a shot.”

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/30-thoughts-adam-oates-responds-critics/

    Mueller has solid scoring chops and is a shot machine. He’s big and, if I recall correctly, he has decent speed.

    Jax, we need bona fide help. Established players playing at a high standard. Not “worth a chance” or “stats say he’s ready to go super-nova.”

    There’s a reason these players aren’t in the NHL anymore *ahem, Dustin Penner, ahem*.

    They have either been injured and are struggling to regain form, not good enough and never were or their attitudes stink and nobody will employ them.

    If they can sign somewhere that can afford them the time and chance for reclamation, then more power to them. But the Edmonton Oilers cannot keep making poor bets on these types of players.

  118. Jethro Tull says:

    GCW_69: I was a big “trade Nurse for Hamonic or equivalent” supporter until the damn expansion draft reared its ugly head.

    Sans expansion draft, Nurse and the 2016 first round pick were the assets to trade to fix this team.With the expansion draft, those become two very important assets to hang on to and I think you sacrifice Eberle or Nuge to keep them.

    I think the expansion draft is light-years from the problems that need to be addressed first. Keep one eye on it, sure, but boy, do we have bigger fish to fry before we start worrying about which one of our stellar defense corps to protect.

  119. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money: Interestingly, my ‘goal summary’ which takes the goals straight out of the NHL play by play has it recorded as a shortie.

    Probably because your program is designed and based on logic, a virtue which is in short supply in the NHL’s corridors of power. The “stewards of the game” play fast & loose with fundamental assumptions to a degree that this aficionado of recreational math finds offensive. No respect for numbers, or principles for that matter. Especially the latter. >:o

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

    Lowetide:
    Jason Gregor ‏@JasonGregor 41s41 seconds ago

    McLellan with positive note re: Klefbom saying it (injury/infection) should not be an issue next year at training camp. #Oilers
    0 retweets 1 like

    This seems like a very good thing to me.

  121. GCW_69 says:

    Jethro Tull: I think the expansion draft is light-years from the problems that need to be addressed first.Keep one eye on it, sure, but boy, do we have bigger fish to fry before we start worrying about which one of our stellar defense corps to protect.

    Do you want to blow assets only to lose them next summer though? Let’s say the Oilers cash in Nurse and the 1st for two legit top four defenders.

    That means they need to protect Sekera, Klefbom and the two new defenders. That means they can only protect four forwards – Hall, Nuge, Eberle, and Draisatl.

    That in turn means Pouliot, Maroon, Yakupov (if he sticks around), Davidson, Reinhart (I think), and any other player brought in to fix the forward depth all have to be exposed. If any of the incoming forwards require a NMC, that would push one of Hall, Nuge, Eberle, or Leon onto the firing line.

    It could be done, but I think it blows out any chance the Oilers have of getting and retaining any depth.

  122. godot10 says:

    I would rather offer Bryan Campbell a 2-year deal to play with Darnell Nurse and on the power play, than to trade Darnell for anybody. Heck, if the Oilers can get Vatanen, give him 3rd pairing minutes with Darnell.

    Impatience with the OIlers should not make one be impatient with Darnell Nurse. Kinger in the first post listed the 4 primary means for fixing the D.

    Trading Nurse is pretty much the (next to) last thing I would do to fix the defense.

  123. Lowetide says:

    The problem with talking about the expansion draft is that we don’t really know anything aboutit. No confirmed year, rules, nothing. So it becomes a conversation ending item. I can tell you the expansion draft rules generally do not resemble the first blush of the rules. Why? NHL suggests aggressive rules, NHL owners and GMs but the boots to those rules and the new teams get screwed.

  124. ashley says:

    I am not sure how many will agree with me, but in this blog’s estimation signing Andrej Sekera in free agency was a quality addition. The only FA signing in recent years that was close? Benoit Pouliot..

    This a sad statement considering how many UFA’s have been signed here in the past 10 years. I honestly dread July 1. FA has been a nightmare for the Oilers, handcuffing us in so many ways over the year. Even the two good signings above, I would argue Sekera, a second pairing Dman is overpaid by 2Million. But beggars can’t be choosers. I shudder to consider this past season without him or worse with Cam Barker in his place.

    How often do teams really hit a home run in FA that helps the team? Half the time? It seems there are just as many boondoggle contracts that come out of FA (especially July 1 signings) as ones that turn out ok for the teams. It’s already a pre-selected group. The really good players get sewn up before they ever reach UFA with few exceptions.

    I’m hoping Chia is going to rely more on in house assets to balance this team through trade. The first round pick could bring back something of considerable value.

    And Hall for Pietrangelo? I may be in a minority, but I would look long and hard at that if all my other defensive options didn’t come through.

  125. AsiaOil says:

    I agree with a lot of GMoney’s take on things – especially impact of the injuries – but I do disagree with a large chunk of this blog who thinks that the Steve Austins are fine and we just need a dman or two. Far far from it and that opinion is coming from the coach and respected guys like McKenzie. Lets look at the last game:

    CGY goal #1 – the defense didn’t stop Eberle from completely mailing in any backchecking effort and abandoning his mark.

    CGY goal 2 – the defense didn’t stop RNH from daydreaming an abandoning Colborne in front of the net

    CGY goal #3 – OK defense and everyone else looking around instead of checking someone (anyone)

    CGY goal 4 – the defense didn’t stop Hendricks from losing his man in front of the net

    CGY goal #5 – the defense didn’t stop Maroon from making a suicide pass that created the breakaway

    So let’s summarize – 4 out of the 5 goals had nothing to do with “the defense”, and our “elite offense” was shooting at the goalie’s crest all night and didn’t hit a fly (along with every other line aside from Landers). The PP was an abomination and they were out-worked by a tired team and flat out quit on an important night. Another dman is not going to fix the lack of effort and a lack of pride the was on display Saturday night. None of the Oiler teams before this cluster would have allowed that debacle to happen against the Flames – and is was categorically not “just the defense”.

  126. AsiaOil says:

    ashley: And Hall for Pietrangelo? I may be in a minority, but I would look long and hard at that if all my other defensive options didn’t come through.

    If Pietrangelo is on the table (or any other elite top pair dman) and Hall is the ask – you do it – and I fully recognize Hall’s impact on the ice. You trade elite winger for elite dman every day of the week and twice on Sunday with the sole exception of Ovechkin/Benn.

  127. Water Fire says:

    I would bet that Nurse would be a highly desired player right now. He was fantastic in the World Juniors, and beats the living daylights out of grown men.

    He’s probably going to be the initial ask in a lot of talks if D are involved and I bet the answer is no unless we’re talking Karlsson or Pietro or the like.

    He is a gold brick, until he keeps playing like he has been to the point it’s on him – 2-3 years or so. Put Leon in that convo as well. We don’t talk like that about Connor.

  128. godot10 says:

    This season foundered on a mismatch of coach with the existing skill set of the forwards. McLellan is a systems coach first with a preference for dump and chase and cycle, and the Oilers forwards are primarily rush forwards first (even McDavid). The coach wasn’t interested in coaching/evolving the team he had. That plus all the injuries and 30th place was in the bag.

    So I disagree with Lowetide’s mostly stay the course recommendation with most of the forwards. The Oilers need fewer rush forwards and more dump and chase forwards for this particular coach. So trading one of the six million dollar men to improve the D is something that is likely to happen. Anyone could go depending on the needs of the team that is giving up the D.

  129. Jethro Tull says:

    GCW_69: Do you want to blow assets only to lose them next summer though?Let’s say the Oilers cash in Nurse and the 1st for two legit top four defenders.

    That means they need to protect Sekera, Klefbom and the two new defenders.That means they can only protect four forwards – Hall, Nuge, Eberle, and Draisatl.

    That in turn means Pouliot, Maroon, Yakupov (if he sticks around), Davidson, Reinhart (I think), and any other player brought in to fix the forward depth all have to be exposed.If any of the incoming forwards require a NMC, that would push one of Hall, Nuge, Eberle, or Leon onto the firing line.

    It could be done, but I think it blows out any chance the Oilers have of getting and retaining any depth.

    It’s all relative. Every other team would be in the same position. So you have to ask yourself: Would the players we protect be chosen anyway?

    All comes down to player evaluation, contract and cap hit. The new teams would have to comply to the cap. Do we over-value our players? Could we potentially leave one up for grabs when he wouldn’t be picked anyway, thus being able to use it on someone else?

    A lot of the talk on here is though the Oilers have the best players in the league and every one of them is a dead lock to be picked in the expansion. Nurse has a lot to grow and show before we consider protecting him beyond Nuge or even Eberle. Not even close. He’s a good prospect with potential. That’s all. Two years from now, if he’s had a 40 or even a 30pt season and has played well defensively, then yeah, his value increases and maybe you want to bet on him.

    It’s a doozy of a problem, but hey, we’re not alone in this. Teams like CHG, LA, STL, NYR etc would be pretty hooped too.

    EDIT: I’m happy with the players you listed as being expansion fodder. And one more thing….Don’t fall in love with prospects! They’re trade fodder and cheap support players until they develop!

  130. Alpine says:

    I think you can reasonably give Nurse 2nd pairing TOI with a good partner as long they get the ozone push, like Klefbom and Jultz got last season. I expect him to be in even better shape next season and he’ll succeed with a proper puck moving RHD.

    Sekera on his offhand and Nurse were not a great match and especially not against top lines. Sekera with Klefbom against top lines is probably the best shutdown pairing we could have since the last time we had a functioning D corps. (2009?)

    Klefbom-Sekera (hard opp, balanced zone starts)
    Nurse-Vatanen (middle opp with ozone push)
    Davidson-Fayne (middle opp with dzone heavy starts)

  131. who says:

    AsiaOil:
    I agree with a lot of GMoney’s take on things – especially impact of the injuries – but I do disagree with a large chunk of this blog who thinks that the Steve Austins are fine and we just need a dman or two. Far far from it and that opinion is coming from the coach and respected guys like McKenzie. Lets look at the last game:

    CGY goal #1 – the defense didn’t stop Eberle from completely mailing in any backchecking effort and abandoning his mark.

    CGY goal 2 – the defense didn’t stop RNH from daydreaming an abandoning Colborne in front of the net

    CGY goal #3 – OK defense and everyone else looking around instead of checking someone (anyone)

    CGY goal 4 – the defense didn’t stop Hendricks from losing his man in front of the net

    CGY goal #5 – the defense didn’t stop Maroon from making a suicide pass that created the breakaway

    So let’s summarize – 4 out of the 5 goals had nothing to do with “the defense”, and our “elite offense” was shooting at the goalie’s crest all night and didn’t hit a fly (along with every other line aside from Landers). The PP was an abomination and they were out-worked by a tired team and flat out quit on an important night. Another dman is not going to fix the lack of effort and a lack of pride the was on display Saturday night. None of the Oiler teams before this cluster would have allowed that debacle to happen against the Flames – and is was categorically not “just the defense”.

    Agree with you except on goal #2. Not Nuges fault. He was torn between covering the guy driving the net or the trailer (4th man) coming into the slot. Looked like the pass was going to the slot. He guessed wrong. If you want to blame someone, blame his linemates who where either late coming back or heading to the bench.

  132. AsiaOil says:

    who: Agree with you except on goal #2. Not Nuges fault. He was torn between covering the guy driving the net or the trailer (4th man)coming into the slot. Looked like the pass was going to the slot. He guessed wrong. If you want to blame someone, blame his linemates who where either late coming back or heading to the bench.

    RNH was with Colborne at the blue line and let him go – mistake #1. He then drifted over to the center of the ice to help the dmen who already had their men – mistake #2. RNH then looks over at Colborne before the pass and had a second chance to see the danger (guy standing alone in front of the net should be obvious) and he again ignores Colborne – mistake #3. Instead RNH drifts around in no man’s land helping no one while Colborne scores an easy goal. The trailer was irrelevant and no danger compared to Colborne. RNH had 3 chances to prevent that goal and didn’t do it – watch for yourself:

    https://www.nhl.com/video/colbornes-great-tip-in/t-279766452/c-43203103

  133. Ducey says:

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/jack-capuano-tears-several-islanders-players/

    The Islanders’ coach calling out his guys.

    I guess they all lack character too.

    Simple:

    You win, you have character
    You lose, you don’t

  134. Oilspill says:

    Klefbom on the won’t trade list is quite humorous. There is not a team that would give you a three legged greyhound at this point.

  135. AsiaOil says:

    Ducey:
    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/jack-capuano-tears-several-islanders-players/

    The Islanders’ coach calling out his guys.

    I guess they all lack character too.

    Simple:

    You win, you have character
    You lose, you don’t

    I’d be content with veterans who make $6 million per year being able to consistently make defensive plays expected of midget level players.

  136. Walter Sobchak says:

    AsiaOil: If Pietrangelo is on the table (or any other elite top pair dman) and Hall is the ask – you do it – and I fully recognize Hall’s impact on the ice. You trade elite winger for elite dman every day of the week and twice on Sunday with the sole exception of Ovechkin/Benn.

    IMO – The Only way you trade Hall is if Lucic is on the team, trading a river pusher would be death for the offence no matter who’s back on D. You can’t create a massive hole just to fix another massive hole.
    It won’t work.

  137. who says:

    AsiaOil: RNH was with Colborne at the blue line and let him go – mistake #1. He then drifted over to the center of the ice to help the dmen who already had their men – mistake #2. RNH then looks over at Colborne before the pass and had a second chance to see the danger (guy standing alone in front of the net should be obvious) and he again ignores Colborne – mistake #3. Instead RNH drifts around in no man’s land helping no one while Colborne scores an easy goal. The trailer was irrelevant and no danger compared to Colborne. RNH had 3 chances to prevent that goal and didn’t do it – watch for yourself:

    https://www.nhl.com/video/colbornes-great-tip-in/t-279766452/c-43203103

    Just watched it again thanks. Still see the same thing. One guy trying to cover two. If he stays with Coburne to the net Bowma is open at the hash marks, middle of the ice. Kind of a pick your poison moment and he guessed wrong.

  138. blackadder says:

    Ducey,

    Exactly. Messier 80-97, oozes character, best leader ever. Messier 97-2004, team cancer, contributor to a culture of failure.

  139. erik says:

    who,

    I agree. There’s plenty of blame to go around on that goal. Nurse shouldn’t be following a man that doesn’t have the puck into the corner. If he stays in front of the net, then Nuge taking the slot is the right play.

    Worse for me though, is Draisaitl (or whoever is on the left wing) slowing coasting into the zone. He needs to skate back and take away the passing lane to Bowma. If that happens then Nuge has an easy read of sticking with Coburn. As it was he was stuck trying to cover two guys in prime goal scoring locations and he picked the wrong one.

  140. AsiaOil says:

    Sure there is plenty of blame – but RNH converges on Jokipakka as he crosses the blue line instead of staying with his man which is Colborne. He knows there is nobody between Colborne and the net because he’s standing right beside Nurse who was playing RHD at the time. RNH drifted over to Jokipakka for no good reason – Nurse had him – and he left Colborne a completely free path to the net. RNH even looks at Colborne before the pass and continues to drift around in the slot. Colborne was the clear danger and he was RNH’s man as Nurse had to stay with Jokipakka until he was not threat. As for Bowma – RNH never even looked at him (nor should he as he’s Drai’s mark).

    Colborne was RNH’s mark – full stop. With Nurse marking Jokipakka there is no one else to cover Colborne. He simply let him go unimpeded to the net and stood around being useless in no-man’s land covering no one in particular. I’m sure coach gave him an eyeful of that at practice today.

  141. G Money says:

    AsiaOil: CGY goal #1 – the defense didn’t stop Eberle from completely mailing in any backchecking effort and abandoning his mark.

    Except the whole sequence was set up by the inability of the Oiler D (Oesterle in this case) to make a zone entry at the Calgary blue line.

    He turned it over to the lone defender standing him up, with all of his teammates already heading in (as they should on the powerplay), and because the nearest guy was also in red, immediately you had two Calgary forwards going the other way with Oesterle the only guy back.

    Oesterle HAS to read that better, and either dump it or turn it back and try again. The one thing he can’t do – try a high risk entry with his entire team heading in and him outnumbered two to one – is the one thing he did.

    If Eberle backchecks maybe he catches and stops the guy, and maybe he doesn’t.

    But a capable zone entry from the D originally and not only is the question of Eberle’s backcheck moot, but quite likely the team would have been cycling and shooting the entire time rather than giving up a shortie.

    A competent D corps changes everything.

  142. Woodguy says:

    AsiaOil:
    I agree with a lot of GMoney’s take on things – especially impact of the injuries – but I do disagree with a large chunk of this blog who thinks that the Steve Austins are fine and we just need a dman or two. Far far from it and that opinion is coming from the coach and respected guys like McKenzie. Lets look at the last game:

    CGY goal #1 – the defense didn’t stop Eberle from completely mailing in any backchecking effort and abandoning his mark.

    CGY goal 2 – the defense didn’t stop RNH from daydreaming an abandoning Colborne in front of the net

    CGY goal #3 – OK defense and everyone else looking around instead of checking someone (anyone)

    CGY goal 4 – the defense didn’t stop Hendricks from losing his man in front of the net

    CGY goal #5 – the defense didn’t stop Maroon from making a suicide pass that created the breakaway

    So let’s summarize – 4 out of the 5 goals had nothing to do with “the defense”, and our “elite offense” was shooting at the goalie’s crest all night and didn’t hit a fly (along with every other line aside from Landers). The PP was an abomination and they were out-worked by a tired team and flat out quit on an important night. Another dman is not going to fix the lack of effort and a lack of pride the was on display Saturday night. None of the Oiler teams before this cluster would have allowed that debacle to happen against the Flames – and is was categorically not “just the defense”.

    With competent Dmen the Oilers are in the Flames zone instead of defending.

    That’s the difference.

    It alters space-time lines, not events.

  143. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy: With competent Dmen the Oilers are in the Flames zone instead of defending.

    That’s the difference.

    It alters space-time lines, not events.

    THERE ARE FOUR LIGHTS!

  144. AsiaOil says:

    …..and I’m my own grandfather if I’m following where this is going 🙂

  145. godot10 says:

    G Money: Except the whole sequence was set up by the inability of the Oiler D (Oesterle in this case) to make a zone entry at the Calgary blue line.

    Wasn’t it McDavid, and not Osterle, who turned over the puck at the blue line on attempted o-zone entry?

  146. square_wheels says:

    AsiaOil,

    Yes BUT.

    You make damn sure Pet is in fact an elite D, because his fancies indicate he’s good but I’m no longer sold on his offence. Could be the Hitchcock factor as well.

    Taylor Hall is a top 10 LW – full stop. Trade him and then we rely on offence from Nuge/Pou/Drai…….on the road that isn’t making any team pucker.

    Back to G’s earlier post about how this summer plays out, it’s imperative we improve the D but until we are at least a competitive team let’s not worry about unattainable franchise D. Pronger trades where we 3 for 1 an elite D in his prime won’t happen.

    The journey from shit to great takes a long pause at good. Ask most teams.

  147. square_wheels says:

    G Money,

    My heartburn this summer comes from a few things :
    – Hamonic is hurt now, is property of Garth “I will fucking trade your ass wherever and whenever I damn well please” Snow. Regardless of who we premise going the other way, if it doesn’t happen, then what ?
    – Chia has a healthy dose of Gritensity poisoning from your Hadron Collider and is now addicted to it. I hope he doesn’t think Lucic replaces Hall. Complements yes, replaces nope.
    – other than the Cgy game I thought we had a decent stretch where we needed a healthy D and a better backup showing, but now that I’ve cooled down from another Charlie Brown Saturday I can honestly say with Klef and Davi were at least competent.
    – 2 RHD is going to sting at best or hurt for years but can anything be worse than wasting McD’s talent ??

    Some thoughts on summer UFA :
    – Lucic is getting a huge pay day from anyone, including LA. I don’t see his “heavy” style wearing him down with age, other players bounce off him so how does that break him ? He’s not signing here anyway.
    – Stamkos is going to a big eastern club, mega payday with huge market exposure. He will play with Connor at the next Olympics, that’s enough.
    – I like Johnson as Talbot’s backup, but I also think LB will rebound
    – bottom 6 tweaks will come but they should be at least one farm hand (cheap) and some late UFA bargains. I think Chia and Tmac have some guys in mind
    – the fact Demers was traded for a bottom pairing by this same coaching staff could mean a distrust between player and staff. Was he their Petry ?? Only the manager makes trades but never without consulting the coaching staff.

  148. AsiaOil says:

    square_wheels,

    Out of the old core – Hall is the last guy you consider moving – no one aside from CMD moves the needle like he can when he wants to. Only issue with Hall is those last few words…..”when he wants to”. That’s why he’s only up for grabs if an elite #1 dman is coming back – and I hear you with regard to Pietrangelo’s numbers and the existence of a bit of doubt.

    If DAL let’s Demers go via UFA then it’s a tell and paying him big, dollars, term and NMC may not be wise. I kind of feel like we have him already in Sekera – and we need a value contract (Hamonic) more than another paid in full UFA at this point. But it’s tricky. Sounds like everyone thinks Klef will be good to go in the fall + Sekera + Davidson + Nurse/GR. We are 5 deep on the left side – with three young guys who are bottom pair but could grow into top 4 roles. I don’t think we can tie up too much cap space or restrict flexibility with NMC too much – so another UFA like Demers makes less sense to me this summer.

    My dream – a true #1 guy who fills a gaping hole at the top of the order – and then you allow internal growth (probably Davy) to fill out the 2nd pair. Klef and Sekera are already good enough for the top 4. STL is interesting – they have Pietrangelo/Shats/Parayko down the right side – but not much on the left side at all (JayBo/Gunnarson/Edmunston). Seems a match for a LHD/RHD swap but Shats is the guy they probably want to trade as he’s UFA in 14 months, does not appear to be having a stellar season (-14 compared to Parayko’s +26) and is unlikely to want to EDM as an address.

    Will be an interesting summer.

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