G10 2016-17: OILERS AT MAPLE LEAFS

To borrow a phrase from the Lovin’ Spoonful, explaining Canada’s view of Toronto is like trying to tell a stranger about rock n roll. Toronto—the city—is pretty damned beautiful. A major North American metro with all of the advantages we associate with that kind of wealth, it is also a clean place—and a city where many different cultures come together to make it far more global than most (if not all) of the country.

Toronto—the one in our minds—controls the daily news, sporting and otherwise. Most of us work for giant companies whose head offices are in Toronto, and some of us have to fly there for seminars and meetings and such. There is nothing bad about the city, or the people, but much of Canada frowns when the name is brought up. You go, Toronto, with your wonderful scenery and culture and art, and you go on with your rock and roll, too. I cannot hate a city that embraced the Guess Who as its own, produced a pretty damn good group of hippie singers, blessed us with the beauty of Blue Rodeo and the grace and power of the Tragically Hip (via Kingston). You have fun running through the six, Toronto.

But get your damned hockey team off my lawn. There is no rivalry here, no history, no glory to be regaled in song. Chances are, the Maple Leafs and Oilers never meet in a series of note in my lifetime, and I have no interest in Al Gore pissing contests. You have your problem team, I have mine. There is no interest in this quarter in doing some wacko ‘Bob Costas slide rule find a way to make Michael Johnson better than Donavan Bailey’ moment. Your player is outstanding, wish him well. Our player is Connor McDavid. We say no more, because no more need be said. Post no bills, Toronto. Stay in your lane.

ECHO BEACH, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in October 2015: 4-8-0, goal differential -7
  • Oilers in October 2016: 7-2-0, goal differential +10
  • Oilers after nine, 2015: 3-6-0, goal differential -6
  • Oilers after nine 2016: 7-2-0, goal differential +10

In Game 10 a year ago, Edmonton lost 4-3 to the Minnesota Wild—courtesy two third-period goals by the Minnesotans. Darnell Nurse would score his first NHL goal that night, but the season was wasting away early again. Entering tonight, Edmonton has 14 points and leads their division, where a year ago the team had six points in nine games and it was all but over. You can’t win a playoff spot in October, but you can sure as hell lose one.

DEFENSE, AFTER NINE

defense-fancies-after-9-games

  • All numbers this time via NaturalStatTrick.
  • Klefbom—Larsson had a very good October, outstanding if you include HD SCs as your main metric. I am a Corsi man, and am well pleased with the numbers for the top pairing. At 5×5, Klefbom has played 54 minutes with McDavid (44-44 Corsi), 44 minutes with Nuge (40-43 Corsi), 35 minutes with Leon (35-31) and 29 minutes with Letestu (21-31). That seems like a reasonable usage of time and solid performance. Oscar has seen the Gaudreau-Monahan-Versteeg line more than any other—that is 1line.
  • Sekera—Russell have a strange player card at this point. Struggling Corsi, doing good enough or a little better in the scoring chances. Sekera played 54 minutes (52-53 Corsi) with McDavid, 44 minutes (30-49, ouch) with the Nuge, 34 minutes with Leon (22-30) and 26 minutes (14-25) with Letestu. We know enough about Qual Comp to suggest both of the top pairings are facing tough opposition—Stastny, Fabbri, Gaudreau—so this pairing seems to be struggling with Nuge and Leon’s lines, and on track with the top pairing’s performance when with McDavid and Letestu. Fair?
  • Nurse—Gryba are posting good numbers and I think that has to do with handling and Nurse’s development—distant early signal warning on all of these numbers. Over 50 percent Corsi is a good number, hope the young man can hold on to it and that the Oilers don’t need to move him up the depth chart. Nurse played 46 minutes with Leon (39-50), 34 with Connor McDavid (43-22!), 32 with Nuge (35-26!) and 21 with Letestu (17-29). Darnell performed better with McDavid and Nuge, and that probably speaks to Qual Comp—most often faced forwards include Patrik Berglund, Marcus Foligno and Matt Tkachuk—that is not top opposition.
  • I like actual NHL players. Edmonton has Adam Larsson, Andrej Sekera, Kris Russell and Eric Gryba in the regular rotation, along with outstanding youngster Oscar Klefbom (116) and blue-chip prospect Darnell Nurse (80 games) who are finding their way in the NHL.
  • Lots of talk about needing a RH shot from the point on the power play, but I like a strong 5×5 group. Use a forward back there if necessary, make sure you have stout defenders.
  • When Brandon Davidson comes back, where do you put him? I set him alongside Darnell Nurse, meaning four of six will be lefties. I can see no other way. You?

FORWARDS, AFTER NINE

forward-fancies-after-9-games

  • Lucic—McDavid—Eberle numbers are fun to look at, as seen above. The opposition are all very good players, it really is a strong list. The Hockey News has 97 on the way to 110 points for the season. That is against the tough opp, ladies and gents. Staggering talent. As mentioned above, I have no interest in a McDavid vs. Matthews conversation, because no matter what happens tonight, McDavid remains manna from heaven and a dream come true. Music!
  • Pouliot—Nuge—Kassian have a strange line overall. Cruising around 46 percent Corsi, winning the scoring chance battle and borderline dominant in HD SC. What does it all mean? I think Nuge is driving this line, but Pouliot has been uneven so far and Kassian is not a substantial offensive player (I don’t think he is, anyway. Could he score 20 goals?) in today’s NHL. There is a lot to like about this line, and there is also some to worry about with this trio. I don’t know. Maybe Leon RW?
  • Maroon—Draisaitl—Puljujarvi are even more all over the place than the Nuge line. Take Leon. He is 48 percent in possession, 47 percent in scoring chances and only 43 percent in HDSCs. Strange. Weird. The Oilers need one of the two lines not named McDavid to dominate the goal differential.
  • Jesse Puljujarvi is an interesting player, he and Anton Slepyshev have been going back and forth fighting over the extra RW (Leon line) job. Pitlick has not been asked to step into the role for any extended period, so I imagine we will continue to see this battle into November—unless Draisaitl moves up from the 3line.

TONIGHT

It should be a fun game, Toronto has some insane young talent up front and enough defensive holes to be fun the other way, too. Edmonton needs to play a consistent, structured game and Cam Talbot is going to need to be .920 or better (I bet). The Oilers should be able to win this game, but lordy it can get strange in Toronto. I expect many posts like ‘I had to watch with the sound down’ and  ‘there are two teams on the ice’ tonight. One of the things about Maple Leafs games is that people tend to treat the roster as substantial even when there are real and legit problems. All that really means is that there will be two flawed teams on the ice tonight, nothing more or less. Your team will sound like the road team no matter the television broadcast, and that is a fact. Same as it ever was.

  • Chris Nichols: McKenzie cautions “we shouldn’t assume that it’s an absolute slam-dunk” that Burns will be back w/San Jose. Source

Well. Hmm. I really like Brent Burns, for all kinds of reasons. He has a real strangeness about him (snakes galore!) and he could slide behind a piano and pass as a member of the Band (another Toronto gift) without a throw. I would love to have him here, but not on a five year deal. He is also more chaotic defensively than one would like for a team with as much wobble as the Oilers. Suspect it happens, July 1 2017.

  • Walter Foddis: Analytics-based decisions tend to be long-run in accruing benefits, but the Panthers found bargains this off-season. “Panthers have their own algorithms, which…are secret, and evaluate players’ entire bodies of work, from junior to the minors to the NHL.” Source

Foddis has a series of interesting quotes on this, a worthwhile trip to get it all (plus the link). I do think there is a great way to cheat the system, and there is some evidence the Oilers is learning. The Tyler Benson pick (a more substantial offensive player in the second round) offers a clue, and a late selection like Aapeli Rasanen is also a good sign. Here are the NHLE’s for 2016 draft picks so far:

  • Jesse Puljujarvi 82gp, 11-12-23 (actual NHL totals)
  • Tyler Benson: 82gp, 12-12-24
  • Markus Niemelainen: 82gp, 0-2-2
  • Matthew Cairns: 82gp, 0-2-2
  • Filip Berglund: 82gp, 0-4-4
  • Graham McPhee: 82gp, 0-13-13
  • Aapeli Rasanen: 82gp, 3-19-22
  • Vincent Desharnais: 82gp, 0-0-0

Three promising offensive forwards, all with varying ranges of skills. Early days, and you would like to stronger boxcars by year’s end (especially from the blue) but there are some nice arrows all the same.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, all the sports! TSN1260, scheduled to appear:

  • Jonathan Willis, Oilers Nation. A look at tonight’s game, and the Oilers after the first month is in the books.
  • Andrew Stoeten, BlueJaysNation. Game 6 WS, Cleveland versus the Cubs and history happening.
  • Scott Cullen, TSN. Leafs-Oilers hasn’t had this kind of build up since Gretzky walked the entire blue and Stan Weir deked out three rats on a penalty shot. We will chat.

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

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546 Responses to "G10 2016-17: OILERS AT MAPLE LEAFS"

« Older Comments
  1. OmJo says:

    Nuge is not a third line guy though, Quinn.

  2. Pouzar says:

    Sekera scaring me tonight.

  3. Pajamah says:

    Kadri is that guy we all went to high school with who was pretty popular, but fucking suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks!

    I feel like I know him. I hate him regardless

  4. square_wheels says:

    Good lord Ebs has been dreadful

  5. Pajamah says:

    1:12 left, careless icing.

    Make ’em pay boys

  6. OmJo says:

    Pajamah:
    Kadri is that guy we all went to high school with who was pretty popular, but fucking suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuucks!

    I feel like I know him. I hate him regardless

    He might suck but he’s been effective tonight.

  7. Lowetide says:

    Bettman point.

  8. OmJo says:

    3v3 with McDavid and Matthews.

  9. Professor Q says:

    Talbot is doing really well.

  10. frjohnk says:

    3 on 3?

    Ok.

    Oilers at least get a Bruce McCurdy point.

  11. Pouzar says:

    D:
    Nuge playing out of this world.

    QFT

  12. khildahl says:

    OmJo: He might suck but he’s been effective tonight.

    Largely because the rules apparently don’t apply to him.

    Not that getting calls would actually help the Oilers.

  13. D says:

    Man, at least the Oil got a point. And the Oil played a decent third period. Ebs is off his game today.

  14. Pajamah says:

    if Babcock avoids putting Matthews on against McDavid, I’m not sure he’ll get an OT shift

  15. jake70 says:

    Still passing too much.

  16. Gret99zky says:

    I bet Eberle is high on Chia’s “next to be headed out of town” list.

  17. OmJo says:

    Damn that Matthews-Laine sequence was poetic,

  18. Pajamah says:

    OmJo: He might suck but he’s been effective tonight.

    Incredibly.

  19. Edmonton_fan says:

    Out shooting the opposition is not a good sign…

  20. JDï™ says:

    dis cul b gud

  21. Pajamah says:

    Well.

  22. OmJo says:

    LMFAO Kadri….

  23. JDï™ says:

    Or not.

  24. russ99 says:

    I’ll take the road point, but I’d love to see McDavid make short work of this in OT,

  25. D says:

    Pouzar: QFT

    Hope Nuge wins it in OT!

  26. jp says:

    Well. That part of the night sucked.

  27. russ99 says:

    Oh wait, replay?

  28. D says:

    Ugh. That was quick.

  29. Professor Q says:

    Goalie interference?!

  30. square_wheels says:

    Brutal non-call

  31. Alpine says:

    Skipped the entire fucking game to study, and i tuned in now just to watch 3 on 3 and fuck!

    This loss is on me guys.

  32. geowal says:

    Well nothing anticlimactic like a 12 second overtime.
    Got a road point.

  33. khildahl says:

    Challenge that, Todd.

  34. böök¡je says:

    Well, maybe next year.

  35. Oil2Oilers says:

    Holding McDavid is obviously not a penalty, it hasn’t been all game why stop now.

  36. Lowetide says:

    Ha. Nice game by Kadri, he is a fantastic player.

  37. Gret99zky says:

    Kadri showing McDavid he has some things to learn.

    meh, salvaged a point.

  38. Pajamah says:

    Lowetide:
    Ha. Nice game by Kadri, he is a fantastic player.

    Unfortunately.

  39. OmJo says:

    Well…. That’s all she wrote on this one.

  40. russ99 says:

    Great to see Nurse go with his offensive instincts and a nice night on the backend too.

  41. D says:

    On the bright side, the Oil got a point out of a game where they didn’t play as crisp as they should. If an Oiler “losing streak” this year is one loss and one OT loss, I’m happy.

  42. Durag says:

    We were lucky to get a Bettman point there. That effort is a loss against every other team on this road trip.

  43. Wolfie says:

    Two glaring penalties by Leafs on 97 that go uncalled and followed up by goals for the Leafs… Those non-calls had a direct impact on the game. The NHL is determined to not let it’s best players be their best players. Absolute horseshit.

    With that being said the Oilers need to be better.

  44. Professor Q says:

    Not to mention the hold on McDavid beforehand.

  45. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    I call bs… we didn’t get to touch the puck…

  46. OmJo says:

    Lowetide:
    Ha. Nice game by Kadri, he is a fantastic player.

    He did a fine job getting under our skin in this one, and then scores the GWG. Like a poor mans Brad Marchand.

  47. böök¡je says:

    Yeti: On the contrary, ka-kow can be very special.
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ldQGPwuHhkM

    That was perfect.

    Also Ka Kow

  48. StixMalone says:

    Lowetide:
    Ha. Nice game by Kadri, he is a fantastic player.

    Yeah. What did Drew call him? A third line player? Wish we had a third line player like him…

  49. Lucinius says:

    I haven’t watched the game and can only go by what has been said here, so keep that in mind, but, here’s a few thoughts;

    1) Eberle has long had issues with his game and they have always centered around his effort level. He has a long history of phoning in games, especially when it comes to the defensive side of things. He has a lot of supporters here (and rightly so; he is an amazing offensive player), but I, and others, have pointed out for a long time that he really, really hurts the Oilers at times simply because he almost never delivers a full game. He’s good enough that it often doesn’t matter, but if the Oilers are to ever make the jump to being an elite team he’s one of the players that is going to have to step up and perform consistently.

    2) If the Oilers miss the playoffs this year I honestly believe it will come down to one of two reasons; injuries or the powerplay (possibly both). The fact the powerplay is already costing them games is horrific. This is the second year with this coaching staff and they remain utterly clueless as to how to build an effective powerplay strategy with this team. I’d wager a goodly amount of the powerplay goals they’ve gotten this year (and last) came not from sound powerplay strategy but from the rush — and with the talent on this team that is utterly, and completely undefensible and should have been addressed in the off season or by this point in the season. Powerplay coach has to go. Period.

    3) Can we please get back to losing the shot battle? I’ll take the Oilers getting out-shot and winning over out-shooting the opposition and losing.

    We got a Bettman point in a game we should have won. It likely isn’t a big deal (it happens, out of conference team, etc., etc.), but the fact that all three losses this year have come from teams the Oilers should easily have beaten (although, credit to the goalies in the last two.. they did their job to keep the Oilers limited) is worrisome.

  50. Pouzar says:

    Benning….very very nice game.

  51. LMHF#1 says:

    Too much outside play in the offensive zone. They didn’t end up looking dangerous in the slot at any point in the third. Need to be better. Bunch of wasted puck control situations because of weak shots.

  52. hunter1909 says:

    Oilers lucky for the point.

    October once again turns out fools gold – once more to be dashed on the rocks of November.

    Former OHL star Nurse was great.

    Eberle I’d give a few shifts on the 4th line, to wake him up. The preciousness is back as McDavid’s bullied all night LOL there I was wondering what would happen if the “Big Tough” Oilers met a physical opponent well shiver me timbers where’s Pat Quinn?

  53. OmJo says:

    StixMalone: Yeah. What did Drew call him? A third line player? Wish we had a third line player like him…

    Pitlick?

  54. Bruce Wayne says:

    Remember that time when I suggested that equal value for Kadri would be Larsson, and I was attacked mercilessly for trolling. Good timing.

    In any case, Kadri is an excellent player. He helps you win games. Comparing Larsson to him was a compliment.

  55. StixMalone says:

    OmJo: Pitlick?

    Not yet….

  56. russ99 says:

    LMHF#1:
    Too much outside play in the offensive zone. They didn’t end up looking dangerous in the slot at any point in the third. Need to be better. Bunch of wasted puck control situations because of weak shots.

    Yeah, this has been a problem for a while now, especially on the powerplay, Eminem offense: round the outside, round the outside, round the outside.

    Having another NHL average level winger wouldn’t hurt either.

  57. blainer says:

    Happy with the point …but.. A good coach and TMc is a good coach must put two centers out to start the overtime. Winning the draw on the opening faceoff is paramount. Possession is everything in OT.

    I would have started CMD Nuge and Klef on the PP.

  58. hunter1909 says:

    You know it’s going to be a long game when faced with an overtly physical opponent, then in response the Oilers go Rudolph Nureyev as they each take about 5-10 hits in order to “out finesse” their oh so horrid opposition that’s literally beating the shit out of them…

    Please can someone explain how this leads to injuries, as in by the end of the road trip expect 1 major addition to the IR?

  59. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    Honestly… that just seemed too “old” oilers to me in OT…
    Lose the draw…opposition gets first shot within 10-15 seconds…goal
    Ugh… And I was actually excited to see McDavid play with all that (extra) open space

  60. Alpine says:

    Bruce Wayne:
    Remember that time when I suggested that equal value for Kadri would be Larsson, and I was attacked mercilessly for trolling.Good timing.

    In any case, Kadri is an excellent player. He helps you win games.Comparing Larsson to him was a compliment.

    funnily enough, Larsson was in the 60s or higher on all possession and chance percentages tonight.

  61. hunter1909 says:

    Bruce Wayne: In any case, Kadri is an excellent player. He helps you win games. Comparing Larsson to him was a compliment.

    Kadri was a cheap punk then.

    Today, Kadri’s an accomplished hockey player.

  62. Pouzar says:

    How did Benning have such a higer CF% rating than his partner?
    24-12…wow.

  63. hunter1909 says:

    Bruce Wayne: Remember that time when I suggested that equal value for Kadri would be Larsson, and I was attacked mercilessly for trolling.

    We love our prospects. Even when they’re shit.

  64. Younger Oil says:

    Games like these really make me question the value of Corsi.

    Who gives a shit about how many shot attempts you have when you telegraph 75% of them and they have no chance of going in?

    Sure, it gives a decent measurement of offensive zone time, but does it really matter if you’re not doing anything with it?

    Would love to see the data on what percentage of NHL games are won by the team that won the shot battle vs what percentage of games are won by the team that won the scoring chance battle.

  65. Dicky94 says:

    Pouzar,

    He definitely didn’t look out of place. Should get another game.

  66. Gordies Elbow says:

    46 shots on net, won the faceoffs and blocks, and half the other teams giveaways?

    Good.

    Brutal reffing, to the point that Drew Remeda is making comments? Hits 3 seconds after the whistle, no penalties?

    Not good.

    This game was one where, if this is the blueprint to stop McDavid, the NHL is about to lose a large percentage of fans.

    Edmonton deserved 2 points, but will take 1.

  67. Bruce Wayne says:

    The good news is that I agree with those that thought this was Puljujarvi’s best game. Playing him in the NHL is asinine, but if he is going to play, he might as well play well. Since what this team really needs is Taylor Hall back, the future rests on Puljujarvi becoming him.

    Nurse and Kassian also played very well. Benning was excellent for a first game. RNH was dangerous.

    The depth on this team is genuinely better.

  68. kinger_OIL says:

    – you know lt you have become a much better evaluator of this team over the years as you post. Your comment about this team not yet being a playoff team is spot on

    – I was at the game and I can say that this is a much improved team that does a lot of things a lot better.

    – our coach does some weird line set ups and I’m inclined to trust him in that he doesn’t trust our players yet enough

    – I’ll let the numbers crunch but imo nurse Benning is not an nhl pairing.

    – pool party’s got a lot of tools. Give him time to put them together. I can’t believe that sheppy is a downgrade that much.

    – in the words of madden a team isn’t as good as their last win and they aren’t as bad as their last loss. This team isn’t the best team in the west and a playoff team does better against a team like the leafs

    – Conner has been taped enough that he isn’t a surprise anymore so we just have to get better

    – ps: had a buddy there who was at the opener in Edmonton. He said he was surprised the place wasn’t louder. I guess that’s modern arena atmosphere

  69. hunter1909 says:

    Lucinius: We got a Bettman point in a game we should have won.

    Oilers showed up entitled and the Leafs bitch slapped then right from the opening faceoff.

    Oilers spent the entire night getting smacked around, as they’ve done since POS was patrolling the forward lines; trying to be cute; failing miserably; exactly as they’ve done since POS was patrolling the forward lines.

    You need to take the past two games and combine them to get the real current picture – whatever the fuck that is lol

  70. blainer says:

    Pouzar:
    How did Benning have such a higer CF% rating than his partner?
    24-12…wow.

    It’s odd .. I didn’t see Nurse good tonight ..one of his worst games this year IMO even with his goal and all the glowing comments from TSN.

    To me he was chasing the play way too much tonight. Agreed I was very pleased with Benning also.

  71. Pouzar says:

    blainer: It’s odd .. I didn’t see Nurse good tonight ..one of his worst games this year IMO even with his goal and all the glowing comments from TSN.

    To me he was chasing play way too much tonight. Agreed I was very pleased with Benning also.

    I didn’t think he looked all that great either. He’s had better games.

  72. GMB3 says:

    The Leafs appeared to not get caught out of position in their own end tonight, seemed content to let the Oil dipsy doo around the outside

  73. hunter1909 says:

    blainer: To me along with the entire Oilers team he was chasing play way too much tonight.

    Fixed.

  74. OmJo says:

    blainer,

    I thought Nurse had a good game, considering he was playing a lot (from what I saw) against Austin Matthews. He wasn’t sharp on his GA, but overall I liked his game.

    I didn’t notice Benning very much, on the other hand.

  75. hunter1909 says:

    Thanks to not having any rushing defensemen, Oilers back up so far in their own zone that if they ever play the Islanders, one of them is going to win that car.

  76. dangilitis says:

    LT, I suggest comparing year over year 2016-17 to 2011-12:

    WC Standings on Oct 29, 2011:
    Rank Team GP W L OT P ROW GF GA Diff
    1. Edmonton 10 6 2 2 14 5 21 15 +5
    2. Dallas 10 7 3 0 14 5 25 22 +3
    3. Chicago 9 5 2 2 12 4 27 23 +4
    4. Los Angeles 9 6 2 1 13 6 22 16 +6
    5. Colorado 10 6 4 0 12 3 29 27 +2

    WC Standings on Nov 1, 2016
    Rank Team GP W L OT P ROW GF GA Diff
    1. Edmonton 10 7 2 1 15 7 31 22 +9
    2. Minnesota 9 6 2 1 13 6 32 19 +13
    3. San Jose 9 6 3 0 12 6 23 22 +2
    4. St. Louis 10 5 3 2 12 5 22 26 -4
    5. Chicago 9 5 3 1 11 4 31 27 +4

  77. Riley Reid says:

    That was some pretty brutal reffing. McDavid’s going to find it tough if they continue to allow him to be mugged all the time. Surprised he hasn’t flipped yet. Good on him. One more thing to admire, but man! That’s a tough row to hoe right now…

  78. Zelepukin says:

    Nurse played great other than the puck/man awareness on the second goal.

    Sekera and Russell looked off. Weren’t as reliable in making the smart play. Lots of weird passes.

    Klef and Larsson were shaky to start but had a decent game of both offence and defense.

    McD – No space given. Not much help from his wingers. Played a lot and that didn’t seem to help all that much. I think he had maybe 3 breaks the whole game where he could get his speed going. 47% FO and he wasn’t the worse, so it was weird to get Lets (40%) out there taking draws for him several times. The whole game it felt like there was so much attention on him that he almost forced himself to try and do everything/be responsible for the game’s outcome.

    Ebs – Showed some push back in the offensive zone but was often on the wrong side of the puck. Did not see him good. This was a game he needed to be a bigger threat in order to help out McD. Horrible in his own zone. You only need to do two things as a McD winger, be effective in your own zone on the boards in breaking out and cashing beauty McD passes. That’s it. Ebs seems to be having trouble doing both.

    Lucic – physical, but not many plays happened where he was useful in the offensive zone.

    Nuge. Money. 62% FO, lots of smart plays. Like McD though, he has to do a lot of heavy lifting.

    Kass – liked his game. Created lots of difficulty for their D down low.

    Drai – Puj – Maroon – A decent game from these 3. They seem to be getting in a rhythm and Puj is starting to lock in on getting his quick release off. This is how he stays. Drai clueing in on Puj being the sniper that Yaks never became.

    Talbot – saved us.

  79. hunter1909 says:

    This appears simple:

    Play McLellan’s system and win

    OR:

    Play the way they’ve done for the last 2 games and lose.

  80. Pouzar says:

    Nuge was a monster.

    Time for Pou-Nuge-Ebs

  81. Bruce Wayne says:

    I think this is a playoff team. They have a big headstart and the rest of the West is getting old.

  82. blainer says:

    hunter1909: Fixed.

    LOL.. thanks.. a lot times it sure did.

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

    Pouzar,

    Agreed, who replaces Ebs on the top line?

  84. Lucinius says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!:
    Pouzar,

    Agreed, who replaces Ebs on the top line?

    The guy who played well with McDavid last year when Eberle was hurt; Yakupov. Wait, can’t do that, we traded him away for nothing.

    Note; yes, I’m aware that Yak needed to be traded, for his sake as much as anything else, but I’m still angry at how badly the Oilers managed that asset (amongst others), so I vent with snide comments.

  85. Pouzar says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!:
    Pouzar,

    Agreed, who replaces Ebs on the top line?

    Gotta be JP

  86. blainer says:

    OmJo:
    blainer,

    I thought Nurse had a good game, considering he was playing a lot (from what I saw) against Austin Matthews. He wasn’t sharp on his GA, but overall I liked his game.

    I didn’t notice Benning very much, on the other hand.

    The one thing that absolutely puts me over the edge is when a D chases a forward all around our own net and out to the blueline.. It almost always leads to a HDSC against IMO especially as the D usually doesn’t have position in this situation.

    I saw this a couple of times tonight along with playing the wrong side way too much. To me that is chasing the play and most top 4 caliber D rarely do this IMO.. Gryba was doing a lot as well but cut a good bit out his last couple of games.

    I will say he did some good things for sure.. Played very physical which I love and he scored.

    Darnell is defiantly not a top 4 yet but with the proper coaching he will get there.

    Not noticing Benning I think is a good thing for bottom pairing.

  87. Dicky94 says:

    Pouzar,

    With Maroon! Lucic with Drai and Kass.

  88. GB&Q says:

    Dicky94,

    Maroon McD Pluj
    Pou Nuge Ebs
    Luc Drai Kass
    15 55 51

    Woodguy tweeted it perfectly a few minutes ago. Give McDavid speediest linemates we got.

  89. Pouzar says:

    Dicky94:
    Pouzar,

    With Maroon!Lucicwith Drai and Kass.

    That makes a lot of sense.

  90. Jethro Tull says:

    Reffing was brutal tonight, but that happens. My gripe is that we went and got these coke machines so we wouldn’t get pushed around. But we did. I can only think that they were under orders not to engage.

    You gotta let the tigers tiger, Todd.

  91. blainer says:

    Pouzar: Gotta be JP

    Agreed.. thought JP played a whale of a game. Wonder if the coach said you gotta
    show us something tonight as we need to make a decision on your status. That would motivate most players.

    I would love to see him on the top line for at least a period or two to see how does. I also think he could be that guy on the PP.. if we could just maintain control on the PP.

  92. Pouzar says:

    GB&Q:
    Dicky94,

    Maroon McD Pluj
    Pou Nuge Ebs
    Luc Drai Kass
    15 55 51

    Woodguy tweeted it perfectly a few minutes ago. Give McDavid speediest linemates we got.

    Well that would mean Pou on his LW

  93. Pouzar says:

    blainer: Agreed.. thought JP played a whale of a game. Wonder if the coach said you gotta
    show us something tonight as we need to make a decision on your status. That would motivate most players.

    I would love to seehim on the top linefor at least a period or two to see how does. I also think he could be that guy on the PP if we could just maintain control on the PP.

    JP needs to play the left point on the PP like Ovi.
    One timers, rebounds, good times. He seems to have the smarts and defensive awareness for the role. It couldn’t be worse.

  94. Zelepukin says:

    Pouzar: Well that would mean Pou on his LW

    and Pitlick on his right.

  95. Pouzar says:

    Zelepukin: and Pitlick on his right.

    hmmmmmm

  96. GMB3 says:

    GB&Q:
    Dicky94,

    Maroon McD Pluj
    Pou Nuge Ebs
    Luc Drai Kass
    15 55 51

    Woodguy tweeted it perfectly a few minutes ago. Give McDavid speediest linemates we got.

    I think McDavid needs to play with faster linemates. I’ve heard the narrative about how timing is more important than speed, but I just feel like the chemistry isn’t really there. Dominate the shot shares be damned, McDavid can do that with anyone. It just appears to me that no one is in the right place at the right time and I think faster wingers could create more space for McDavid.

  97. blainer says:

    Pouzar: JP needs to play the left point on the PP like Ovi.
    One timers, rebounds, good times. He seems to have the smarts and defensive awareness for the role. It couldn’t be worse.

    Absolutely. Jeebus he can fire the puck and gets it off quick. I really believe we have a great player in the making with JP.

    Suspect though they keep him up til the 39 game mark like Drai. I’m not sure how I feel about that decision though.

  98. OF17 says:

    Pitlick might actually be a good RW for McDavid. He shoots from anywhere, has good speed, and is a load on the forecheck, which seems to fit McDavid’s game well.

  99. Dicky94 says:

    GMB3,

    I just like the way Maroon can win puck battles and pass. McDavid needs that kind of player to get him the puck. JP likes to shoot. Perfect storm.

  100. Jethro Tull says:

    OF17:
    Pitlick might actually be a good RW for McDavid. He shoots from anywhere, has good speed, and is a load on the forecheck, which seems to fit McDavid’s game well.

    Beware the ghost of JF Jacques.

  101. blainer says:

    Is it just me or is the east stronger than the west this year. By the looks of the scores so far tonight it looks like we gained on just about all the teams in the west but one with the Bettman point tonight.

    The east won all their games against the west tonight.

  102. OF17 says:

    Jethro Tull: Beware the ghost of JF Jacques.

    Pitlick is no Jacques, and McDavid is no Horcoff.

  103. JOFA says:

    I think we will have a better idea of what kind of team we have after this road trip. I would consider going 500 a huge success. I am not very optimistic it will happen.

  104. Zelepukin says:

    OF17: Pitlick is no Jacques, and McDavid is no Horcoff.

    Dicky94:
    GMB3,

    I just like the way Maroon can win puck battles and pass. McDavid needs that kind of player to get him the puck. JP likes to shoot. Perfect storm.

    The cycle game is also not really the ideal McD scenario. You’re only cycling because you didn’t create an odd-man rush or a scoring opportunity off of the break-out. Something that McD is the biggest threat in the league at.

  105. OF17 says:

    Zelepukin:
    The cycle game is also not really the ideal McD scenario. You’re only cycling because you didn’t create an odd-man rush or a scoring opportunity off of the break-out. Something that McD is the biggest threat in the league at.

    I guess I should be more clear. McDavid is dangerous off the rush because he has speed and hands that no one can match. I think expecting a winger to keep up with McDavid and riff off the rush is most of the time going to be a losing battle. So when we’re picking wingers for him, we should look for guys that can get him the puck with space, retrieve pucks for him, get open for a shot, and make that shot dangerous. Puljujarvi sounds like an excellent future candidate for that role, but right now, that sounds a lot like Pitlick.

    Pouliot-McDavid-Pitlick
    Maroon-RNH-Eberle
    Lucic-Draisaitl-Puljujarvi
    Lander-Letestu-Kassian

    It’s not perfect, but it gives us three legitimately dangerous lines, even if none of the three is supersonic. Then again, look at what Crosby was able to do with Sheary, and it makes you wonder if McDavid would be significantly slowed down.

  106. RPG says:

    Interesting comments from Babcock post game.

    Mike Babcock thought McDavid wore down as a result of 22+ minutes. “He’s a good player and all that, but so is Nugent-Hopkins.”

  107. stevezie says:

    Just saw the highlights. I do not think there was a penalty on the winner.

    And happy birthday Sheps.

  108. Jethro Tull says:

    stevezie:
    Just saw the highlights. I do not think there was a penalty on the winner.

    And happy birthday Sheps.

    You are correct. There were, however, numerous missed calls during the game.

  109. Gerta Rauss says:

    stevezie:
    JDï™,

    Uh huh

    Andy..?

  110. tapper says:

    RPG:
    Interesting comments from Babcock post game.

    Mike Babcock thought McDavid wore down as a result of 22+ minutes. “He’s a good player and all that, but so is Nugent-Hopkins.”

    Heard that too. There were a few comments before that too, questioning playing McDavid 8+ minutes in the 1st. Babcock trolling TMc?

    My guess is that coach looked at the schedule and decided to push it a little tonight, to bank the 2 points. Rangers look really tough right now, scoring from everyone. Who wants to be talking about a 3 game losing streak?

  111. Gerta Rauss says:

    I thought Benning looked good-he didn’t seem overwhelmed at all

    The rest of the D-the whole team really- seemed off, what a weird game. Lots of possession and shots but not a lot of shots/chances from the kill zone

    Looking forward to a shake up of the lines. I too think it’s time for Pou-Nuge-Ebs, I think it would benefit all 3 of them.

  112. Lowetide says:

    Don’t listen when Mike Babcock or Ken Hitchcock are talking about your team. THey are not your friends.

  113. stevezie says:

    Jethro Tull,

    That sounds believable

  114. JimmyV1965 says:

    I hope the Oilers get to see the post-game comments from Babcock and Kadri. Smug smart-ass comments from a couple of guys who should count their blessings they came out with 2 pts. Not sure a team with three frickin wins should be so cocky after the game. The rematch will be real interesting.

  115. JimmyV1965 says:

    GMB3:
    The Leafs appeared to not get caught out of position in their own end tonight, seemed content to let the Oil dipsy doo around the outside

    I actually thought this was Nurse’s best game. He had a major brain cramp on the second goal, but he moves the puck much better than ever. You can see he’s much more confident when handling the puck under pressure and he’s doing more than just banking the puck off the glass.

  116. JimmyV1965 says:

    Younger Oil:
    Games like these really make me question the value of Corsi.

    Who gives a shit about how many shot attempts you have when you telegraph 75% of them and they have no chance of going in?

    Sure, it gives a decent measurement of offensive zone time, but does it really matter if you’re not doing anything with it?

    Would love to see the data on what percentage of NHL games are won by the team that won the shot battle vs what percentage of games are won by the team that won the scoring chance battle.

    OF17: I guess I should be more clear. McDavid is dangerous off the rush because he has speed and hands that no one can match. I think expecting a winger to keep up with McDavid and riff off the rush is most of the time going to be a losing battle. So when we’re picking wingers for him, we should look for guys that can get him the puck with space, retrieve pucks for him, get open for a shot, and make that shot dangerous. Puljujarvi sounds like an excellent future candidate for that role, but right now, that sounds a lot like Pitlick.

    Pouliot-McDavid-Pitlick
    Maroon-RNH-Eberle
    Lucic-Draisaitl-Puljujarvi
    Lander-Letestu-Kassian

    It’s not perfect, but it gives us three legitimately dangerous lines, even if none of the three is supersonic. Then again, look at what Crosby was able to do with Sheary, and it makes you wonder if McDavid would be significantly slowed down.

    I love Pitlick too, but he plays 8 minutes a night. You can’t suddenly put him on the first line. I think we might wan to stick with Ebetle for the time being. He has scored a goal or two in this league.

  117. Oilspill says:

    SORRY IT PUTS YOU OVER THE EDGE because pressuring the puck carrier around the net by a Dman and ñot releasing is an NHL strategy. IT’S NOT AN ERROR! These guys often play a hybrid defense and staying with this man forces the skater with the puck to take an outside route and not be able to swing in a high danger position. The other players need to read and react into a zone/man on man positioning. Quit complaining that the guys are doing the wrong thing when in reality some people haven’t got a clue.

    blainer: proper

  118. OilClog says:

    Clearly the Nuge is awake, give him the guy that already knows how to play with him.

    Lucic/Nuge/Ebs

    Make Mcdavid play with players he views as chess pieces not defer to.

    Maroon/Mcd/Pitlick

    see what 67 style does with 29

    pou/drai/puj

    put 44 in a more successful position

    lander/letestu/kass

    Benning was good, but he needs to remove that 83. It’s just not right

  119. Seismic Source says:

    A bettman point on a night when every other Western team lost in regulation, and no bettmans on any western vs western matchups. Its as good as a win

  120. SwedishPoster says:

    That was a bad hockey game. Both teams deserved 0 points. Worst I’ve seen this season and I had to suffer through Sweden’s anemic world cup play. Just a mess of unstructured skating around and shooting.

    McDavid got schooled for pretty much the first time in his NHL career tonight by Kadri, excellent game by the guy who is one of the reasons Eakins got so hyped a few years ago. Thanks again Nazeem.
    McLellan also was taken to school a bit by his old mentor, got way too panicky way too quickly with the McDavid matchup throwing Connor out on every shift thus messing up the rythm of every line in the process.

    I hate the first line, Eberle is terribly miscast on McDavids wing and Lucic is trying to change his game to fit McDavid but just ends up forcing plays and bobble the puck a lot. There was a short shift where Ebs was out with RNH and immediately they found lanes and Jordan started to look alive and not just an extra on the McDavid show.

    The problem is who do you put with McD. Puljujärvi should be a fit down the road but his performances are way too inconsistent at the moment to be a great fit imo unless being on Connors wing has him growing ofcourse. But right now Pulju isn’t really playing his own game, he was very involved tonight, but him shooting at every opportunity isn’t really his normal game, don’t get me wrong he likes to shoot but atm you see nothing of his vision which is usually a strength. My guess is that he needs the game to slow down, atm he just barely keeps up and rely on his physical attributes and shot to try and make a difference.

    I would like to see Nuge on McDavids wing but that doesn’t look like it will happen anytime soon so why not Pouliot and McD, let Nuge revive the old chem with Ebs, put Lucic with Drai, mix and match the rest of the wingers until you find a fit.

    On Oilers lighting up the shot clock btw. To my eye that was just makeup on a pig. It’s the kind of game I love when US or Canada shows up playing against Sweden at times where they shoot from everywhere because you know that if your goalie has a decent game you’ll end up winning fairly comfortable as it’s a game without structure or any kind of creativity.
    Basically a confidence boost for your goalie.

    To create dangerous chances you need poise with the puck at times, one of the few times anyone did Nurse scored, we have three centers with good playmaking ability they need to dig into that and to make good offensive plays you need poise.

    Having said that, on a positive note, if your team goes through a rough spell it is a strength to be able to pur up a shotclock game when in a rut. If you can keep on keeping on with the shots when the overall game is off you eventually run into a goalie on an off night and can start build momentum. I think it’s a big reason corsi correlates to long term success, the ability to put up shots despite not playing well.

  121. Woodguy says:

    Younger Oil:
    Games like these really make me question the value of Corsi.

    Who gives a shit about how many shot attempts you have when you telegraph 75% of them and they have no chance of going in?

    Sure, it gives a decent measurement of offensive zone time, but does it really matter if you’re not doing anything with it?

    Would love to see the data on what percentage of NHL games are won by the team that won the shot battle vs what percentage of games are won by the team that won the scoring chance battle.

    That’s like saying a map of Alberta is useless because it doesn’t have the 7-11 on the corner of 95ave and 149st listed.

    It’s not the map’s fault, it’s what you are expecting the map to tell you.

    Corsi doesn’t “predict” who will win individual games.

    Corsi is currently the best measure for predicting future goal share during a season, especially when the gp is small.

    That’s what it does best and that is why it is used.

    Do not expect it describe an individual game winning expectation because it doesn’t do that.

  122. Woodguy says:

    Interestingly TOR won the game with similar stats that EDM was running during the winning streak.

    Get out corsi’d
    Win or tie the Scoring Chance battle
    Dominate the High Danger Scoring Chance battle.

    Last night:

    TOR:
    EV corsi 43.66
    EV SCF% 49.06
    EV HDSCF% 58.62

  123. Lloyd B. says:

    SwedishPoster,

    Thanks for this Mr. Swede. I always enjoy your take on the games and on hockey in general. Normally when I see a wall of text I read the first couple of lines and then scroll to read the last couple.

    I always read yours coast to coast. It’s great that you found the return button. Much easier to read. Thank you.

  124. PhrankLee says:

    Better than the Ottawa game. Put up a point.

    In the past the Oilers would be stuck in this kind of funk for 10 game stretches.

    Shocking as it sounds I think they are on their way out of it now.

    That is progress with a capital P for this Oiler fan.

  125. Centre of attention says:

    PhrankLee:
    Better than the Ottawa game. Put up a point.

    In the past the Oilers would be stuck in this kind of funk for 10 game stretches.

    Shocking as it sounds I think they are on their way out of it now.

    That is progress with a capital P for this Oiler fan.

    I agree that the losing streaks wont stretch to double digits this year *knock on wood* but I also think there is a real chance they get smoked in new york.

    The Rangers are rolling so Thursday will be a test, and it seems like Saturday games on the road are never good for the Oilers. They follow that up with their 3rd game in 4 days against the Red Wings.

    This could get ugly fast.

  126. SwedishPoster says:

    Lloyd B.,

    Thanks. Yeah the return button gets lost in the shuffle sometimes.
    I usually watch the games while eating breakfast and write down my thoughts on my phone while commuting to work and the editing suffers.
    I sometimes write the last bit between patients in the ER so I blame the unhealthy swedish population for any crappy grammar.. 🙂

  127. Gret99zky says:

    Hopefully McDavid doesn’t wait for the Toronto rematch to lay his vengeance down.

    Hopefully he takes a large bite of the Big Apple.

    His will be done.

  128. Pouzar says:

    Woodguy:
    Interestingly TOR won the game with similar stats that EDM was running during the winning streak.

    Get out corsi’d
    Win or tie the Scoring Chance battle
    Dominate the High Danger Scoring Chance battle.

    Last night:

    TOR:
    EV corsi 43.66
    EV SCF% 49.06
    EV HDSCF% 58.62

    Exactly. And like EDM in it’s victories, I thought T.O. was the better team.

    On to the Rangers. Yikes.

  129. PhrankLee says:

    Centre of attention,

    Granted the Rangers have been scoring at a super high rate. I still like our chances.

    I felt they were pulling out of the slump in the Toronto game. For the slump to last one or 2 games is more akin to a first division NHL team and that is what has been missing from the group.

    They are focused on being a better road team and so far they are only one tick below that with an excellent October under their belts.

    Talbot is key in the Rangers game.

  130. B S says:

    I know we’re not supposed to complain about the reffing, or use it as an excuse, but 1) last night was absolutely terrible, and yes that hold on McDavid at the end was a penalty, because it was holding and 2) if McD had done it he would have been penalized. And 2 is my sticking point. People complain about how the Oilers never fight back or play a little dirty when the other team does, but that’s because the Oilers seem to have to play against another set of rules. Marincin is allowed to noose Mcdavid after a play, but Lander gets 2 min. for shoving a leaf out of the way for a blatantly late hit on Letestu. The only solution it seems is to initiate and badly, and hope the refs call the retaliations instead of the initial penalties like they do for everyone else. So far that hasn’t been the case, but maybe it will change.

    You can point out that the Oilers didn’t have a great game, but it’s awfully hard for Eberle to backcheck with a goon hanging off his shoulder, or McDavid to score when he’s being held against the boards for an entire shift.

  131. frjohnk says:

    Im an EBERLE fan, but the last two games, not good. He has had flashes of good play and then flashes of bad play, this is just defensively. Needs to be more consistent. Especially if he is not scoring. He needs and can be better.

    Id put EBERLE back with RNH as I think there needs to be a change to mix things up. but then the other guys available for the 1st line RW are either Kassian or JP.

    I like Kassian and he has played well, but he is not a 1st line winger.

    I love the future of JP and McDavid, and JP has shown flashes of brilliance, but he is not ready.
    I said after the Yak trade, watch, JP will be on McDavids wing early in the year.

    Or maybe put Draisaitl with McDavid and put Lander in the 3rd center spot.

    Or Maroon on McDavids right wing. Lucic-McDavid-Maroon. Thats a lot of beef.

    Or Pouliot on McDavids right wing. Pouliot is one of the few wingers who has the speed to keep up.

    Whoever plays with McDavid will get 2 on 1’s and 3 on 2’s and they need to shoot the puck! All of McDavid Lucic and EBERLE are trying to make 1 more pass. Just shoot the damn puck!!!

  132. Pouzar says:

    frjohnk,

    I want Ebs and Nuge back together as well. They know how each other thinks out there and Nuge is in beast mode right now. Having his old buddy back could be a an offensive spark for the team. I wonder if TMc is reluctant to do this b/c he thinks Kassian is more effective in the shutdown role with Nuge on this line. We wait. I will be disappointed if some line shuffling isn’t done for next game.

  133. frjohnk says:

    Pouzar:
    frjohnk,

    I want Ebs and Nuge back together as well. They know how each other thinks out there and Nuge is in beast mode right now. Having his old buddy back could be a an offensive spark for the team. I wonder if TMc is reluctant to do this b/c he thinks Kassian is more effective in the shutdown role with Nuge on this line. We wait. I will be disappointed if some line shuffling isn’t done for next game.

    Yup. I agree.

    In other news, our corsi is getting better!!!
    Woot!!

    But our scoring chances are getting worse
    Boot!

    Rangers advanced stats are not unlike ours. Almost same record.
    They have 7 wins 3 losses.
    We have 7 wins, 2 losses, 1 OTL.

    CF%
    New York Rangers 49.66
    Edmonton Oilers 49.43
    SF%
    New York Rangers 50.33
    Edmonton Oilers 51.93
    GF%
    New York Rangers 60.47
    Edmonton Oilers 57.14
    SCF%
    New York Rangers 52.41
    Edmonton Oilers 51.32
    HDCF%
    New York Rangers 57.29
    Edmonton Oilers 53.67
    PDO
    New York Rangers 1.038
    Edmonton Oilers 1.015

    Whoever loses the corsi battle but wins the scoring chance battle wins the game!!

  134. Pouzar says:

    Benning at 24-12 CF/CA still amazes me. Barely noticeable in a very awesome way.

  135. Pouzar says:

    Bruce M,

    Any idea where your colleague Mr. Leavins got CF of 75% for Adam Larrsson?
    hockeystats.ca has him at 63.41% 5 on 5.

    Always curious about what sites people use.

    Cheers.

  136. frjohnk says:

    This is the shot battle from last night. 5 on 5
    Oilers gave up shots from these locations ( goals against)

    Low danger area_____3 (0)
    Medium danger area_14 (0)
    High danger area____11 (2)

    Compare that with the previous 9 games

    Oilers shots against

    Shot location— amount per /60—( shooting % against Oiler goalies)
    LD—-12.3—–(3.53%) 3 goals against
    MD—-11.1—-(0%) 0 goals against
    HD—-6.7——-(21.7%) 10 goals against

    We gave up 25 shots from the “arrow”, this is the medium and high danger locations. This is about 7 more shots than average. Thats beer league defense. Nowhere near what we have averaged.

    Oilers shot from these locations ( goals for)

    Low danger area_____10 (1)
    Medium danger area_18 (0)
    High danger area____12 (1)

    Compare that with the 9 previous games

    Oilers shots for

    LD___12.5___(1.2%) 1 goal for
    MD__10.2____(6.3%) 4 goals for
    HD__8.14____(22%) 11 goals for

    We took 30 shots from the arrow, which is 12 more than usual. We had more shots than the Leafs from the perimeter, medium danger and high danger locations.

    Both teams played beer league defense.

    EDIT: I should add that the previous 9 game stats are per 60 minutes of 5 on 5.

    So the shots for and against by both teams last night are for 53 minutes and 54 minutes. If I put last nights shots for and against per 60 minutes theyd be even higher!!!

  137. frjohnk says:

    Pouzar:
    Bruce M,

    Any idea where your colleague Mr. Leavins got CF of 75% for Adam Larrsson?
    hockeystats.ca has him at 63.41%5 on 5.

    Always curious about what sites people use.

    Cheers.

    Must be a typo from Mr Leavins.
    Natural Stat Trick is showing 63% for Larsson as well.

  138. russ99 says:

    We’re one winger short of being able to shuffle lines like that.

    The problem is the RNH line is sawing off tough opposition, and to change up that line to add offense would put too large a load on Talbot, who’s coming off the best hot streak of his career, especially when Larsson and Klefbom are scuffling in our end.

    We’re getting secondary scoring at a reasonable clip, so it’s really just up to the top 2 lines to adjust.

    The McDavid line needs to stop thinking they can score off the rush on every shift, the opposition has adjusted to minimize that, so we need to keep the puck in tough areas to create space for good shots after the rush is over.

    The Nuge line needs to do better on the cycle, and finding the open shot instead of just winging it back to the point.

    Too much lazy play while fat on early wins, need to do the hard work and the goals will come.

    The one thing I would change is the powerplay, use 2 defensemen and 3 forwards and get a big guy on the goalie, all our outside shots are too visible and too easy. McLellan has to realize it’s not working and adjust, something he’s not been too good at in his tenure.

  139. Pouzar says:

    NYR 40 GF and a +18

    WTF is goin on there?

  140. Pouzar says:

    russ99: The problem is the RNH line is sawing off tough opposition, and to change up that line to add offense would put too large a load on Talbot, who’s coming off the best hot streak of his career.

    Great point. I think TMc is reluctant to change this.

  141. Jethro Tull says:

    Pouzar: Great point. I think TMc is reluctant to change this.

    But Talbot isn’t coming of his hot streak. He’s still playing very well. Goalies are about SV%. Whoever thought that wins define a goalie and the idiot in the media he convinced to propagate it should be put in stocks.

  142. Bling says:

    I didn’t see the game.

    Weird comment by Babcock. Can’t recall that specific a criticism from one coach to another post-game. Was Babcock defending McDavid, pumping Nuge’s tires or slashing Todd’s?

  143. Yeti says:

    SwedishPoster,

    Jag älskar dig!

  144. who says:

    SwedishPoster:
    That was a bad hockey game. Both teams deserved 0 points.Worst I’ve seen this season and I had to suffer through Sweden’s anemic world cup play. Just a mess of unstructured skating around and shooting.

    McDavid got schooled for pretty much the first time in his NHL career tonight by Kadri, excellent game by the guy who is one of the reasons Eakins got so hyped a few years ago. Thanks again Nazeem.
    McLellan also was taken to school a bit by his old mentor, got way too panicky way too quickly with the McDavid matchup throwing Connor out on every shift thus messing up the rythm of every line in the process.

    I hate the first line, Eberle is terribly miscast on McDavids wing and Lucic is trying to change his game to fit McDavid but just ends up forcing plays and bobble the puck a lot. There was a short shift where Ebs was out with RNH and immediately they found lanes and Jordan started to look alive and not just an extra on the McDavid show.

    The problem is who do you put with McD. Puljujärvi should be a fit down the road but his performances are way too inconsistent at the moment to be a great fit imo unless being on Connors wing has him growing ofcourse. But right now Pulju isn’t really playing his own game, he was very involved tonight, but him shooting at every opportunity isn’t really his normal game, don’t get me wrong he likes to shoot but atm you see nothing of his vision which is usually a strength. My guess is that he needs the game to slow down,atm he just barely keeps up and rely on his physical attributes and shot to try and make a difference.

    I would like to see Nuge on McDavids wing but that doesn’t look like it will happen anytime soon so why not Pouliot and McD, let Nuge revive the old chem with Ebs, put Lucic with Drai, mix and match the rest of the wingers until you find a fit.

    On Oilers lighting up the shot clock btw. To my eye that was just makeup on a pig. It’s the kind of game I love when US or Canada shows up playing against Sweden at times where they shoot from everywhere because you know that if your goalie has a decent game you’ll end up winning fairly comfortable as it’s a game without structure or any kind of creativity.
    Basically a confidence boost for your goalie.

    To create dangerous chances you need poise with the puck at times, one of the few times anyone did Nurse scored, we have three centers with good playmaking ability they need to dig into that and to make good offensive plays you need poise.

    Having said that, on a positive note, if your team goes through a rough spell it is a strength to be able to pur up a shotclock game when in a rut. If you can keep on keeping on with the shots when the overall game is off you eventually run into a goalie on an off night and can start build momentum. I think it’s a big reason corsi correlates to long term success, the ability to put up shots despite not playing well.

    Agree with you on a lot of this. Particularly the coaching. Thought tmac was trying to be a bit too clever with his McDavid shuffling. To me if his line is struggling because of the matchup you put him between different wingers and put your first line wingers with nuge who was having a great game. Doesn’t disrupt your lines ice times as much.
    Team still needs to shoot more. I saw 4 or 5 guys pass up good shooting opps to make another pass and end up turning the puck over. Can’t score if you don’t shoot.
    On a side note I really hate the nhl culture that says the stars have to fight through all the physical and verbal abuse their shadows can dish out. I am not a fan of winning through intimidation but in this case I would have been willing to kill of a major penalty to see Lucic grab kadri and beat him in to the ice after he gave Connor that little shove into the boards.
    Of course then we would have to listen to how smart kadri was to draw that penalty. All the ref has to do is give him 2 for unsportsmanlike a few times and we wouldn’t have to resort to giving him a beating. I believe the game would be better for it.

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