When you believe in things that you don’t understand
Then you suffer
Superstition ain’t the way
If you haven’t read it, you must read it. That isn’t an order, that is just stating the obvious. I won’t quote it much because you should read the words in their proper order. It is here. Wow.
- Friedman: In Hall’s case, a couple of Oilers believe the organization wanted to make it easier for McDavid’s influence to grow in the room. “Taylor’s a dominant personality,” one said. “That’s not a criticism. That’s who he is.”
Wow. That is a fascinating passage. I believe it, Friedman dug up a brilliant gem and in doing so cast an enormous light on the thinking of Oilers management in regard to this player (Hall). It also suggests (imo) the organization continues to make decisions based on things other than winning. It sounds like they were convinced Hall was not a positive influence in the group. Your mileage may vary, but for me the quality of this player is such that living with whatever downside there may be would be the play here. Edmonton has been worried about the mix ever since they became a losing organization. Edmonton has been worried about the mix ever since they became a losing organization.
That said, most of this goes away if the Oilers post a winning season in 2016-17—making the lack of balance on the current roster even more curious. Peter Chiarelli is a veteran general manager, I believe he is well aware of the need for at least one more move to improve this group. What’s he building in there?
The Oilers front office better hope Larsson shines next year. Truly. Because the little anecdotes around this deal … woof.
— Travis Yost (@travisyost) September 6, 2016
Yost is a smart cookie and I think this passage really matches the reality of this morning. The anecdotes of the Hall deal are all the things we usually hear about this kind of trade—and if you are upset now, wait until you read the 2016-17 boxcars a year from now. Peter Chiarelli needs to make certain that the Oilers turn north this season, and that means a year of roster change is on the way. Standing pat and waiting for the expansion draft may sell in some cities, but for the Oilers the time is now.
WHAT DOES THAT MEAN?
It should mean the Oilers will be very quick to move if there are roster holes this year. Backup goalie, the situation at center and the famous need for a righty blue are all obvious spots—but there are concerns on skill RW and the Nuge is coming off a poor season. Oh by the way Oscar and Brandon were hurt a lot of last season.
One thing I do want to say: Adam Larsson should be a strong addition to this hockey club. I understand the deal is not a popular one with most fans, and I have made my opinion clear. I will tell you this: Larsson’s underlying numbers defensively do seem to be quality. Darcy and G’s work suggests it, the smart people I talk to (who do not want their names mentioned here) confirm it (while also reiterating it was not a value deal).
Folks, this is the reailty. Hall for Larsson was a poor trade, but it did improve the balance of the roster. The Oilers made a very risky move, we know it and have to live with it. The thing I cannot understand is this: Why stop here? Baffling. It is almost as if the entire organization lacks urgency. Again!
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
We are back with the September rush. TSN1260, 10 this morning. Scheduled to appear:
- Scott Burnside, ESPN. Scott is at USA camp (World Cup of Hockey) in Columbus, we will talk early days and make sure everyone is healthy.
- Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. Eskimos lost the LDC against Calgary and wake up this morning in a playoff race.
- Jonathan Willis, Cult of Hockey. Hall—Larsson, and the curious summer in goal for Edmonton.
- Scott Cullen, TSN. The Hall trade revisited, CFL weekend and the Jays in a pennant race.
10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter.