ROAD FOOD

The Oilers got their road trip underway with an overtime loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs, a game that had some interesting twists and turns. Edmonton entered the third period down one goal and found a way to gather a point—and that is progress. It was a tough, physical road game, and guess what? There is another on the way. Edmonton has a road record of 3-0-1 today, that is going to change on this road trip. Can Edmonton gather 15 points from its 15 games in November?

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 in November 2015: 4-7-2
  • Oilers in November 2016: 0-0-1 goal differential -1
  • Oilers after 10, 2015: 3-7-0, goal differential -7
  • Oilers after 10, 2016: 7-2-1, goal differential +9

The Oilers began their long 15-game November schedule last night, losing 3-2 in overtime to the Toronto Maple Leafs. It was a weird game, with line matching and double shifting galore—and I do think that may have impacted the flow. Either way, Connor McDavid got checked tightly and lost position on Kadri in the OT. A reasonable road game, I am never going to complain about 46 shots on goal.

DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

defense-last-night

  • Nurse—Benning went 20-12 in 12:54 and Darnell scored the tying goal when both men were on the ice. Benning was 8-6 against Auston Matthews and I assume that includes Darnell. It was a very weird game and I didn’t really notice Benning—but that is a good thing. He is undersized but a game rooster, and he can move the puck.
  • Darnell Nurse has really settled in and is making calm decisions. I am not saying he is out of the woods, but the goal is an example of something he didn’t make a year ago. Moves to the middle gets a clearer lane. If Nurse is going to be a strong NHL defenseman for years to come, these are the kinds of things we should be looking for, and they appear to be there.
  • Klefbom—Larsson are strong. A sublime player card for both men, the duo was only 5-10 against the Kadri line, and that was a big part of the game.  The pairing was 18-13 in 16:19 together, including 8-1 with Leon in five minutes. It’s possible to have good numbers and get noticed for negative things—single moments and events can have super importance while being exactly single moments and events. Such was the case last night for Oscar, but he is a fine young blue. Eight shots, four blocked shots, he is a beauty.
  • Sekera—Russell had a time. They were 13-13 together (Sekera looks so good because he was 7-0 with Larsson in 46 seconds!!!!), but splits are weird. Russell versus Matthews is a disaster (1-11 in 5:43) while Sekera is 4-6 against Matthews in 3:30. It looks like Todd McLellan did not like the matchup and moved Larsson in for a time, but that is a guess and those who can parse these things closely will no doubt have a better answer. Russell was 2-9 in HDSC. Lordy. Sekera—Davidson is probably going to be a thing.
  • Nurse scored his second of the year and had six shots on goal. He was the only defenseman with a boxcar number on the evening.
  • All numbers NaturalStatTrick.

FORWARDS, LAST NIGHT

forwards-last-night

  • Lander—Letestu—Pitlick had a terrific 4line night, including a goal where all three men got a boxcar. McLellan rewarded this line with some extra minutes and some famous linemates. Nice to see.
  • Maroon—Draisaitl—Puljujarvi had an insane night, winning the shot battle, the HDSC battle, and the teenager on the line got seven shots on goal. This line was given the Bozak line and beat them like a rented mule (11-1). I love Martin Marincin, but he and the Bozak line were not able to handle the Oilers trio. How on God’s earth they didn’t score is beyond me.
  • Pouliot—Nuge—Kassian had a good to great night, with the center getting an assist. Nuge was 11-2 against the Bozak line (Bozak was 9-26) and 7-9 against the Matthews line. That was a good result in my opinion, this line did enough to win.
  • Lucic—McDavid—Eberle had their poorest performance as a line. They were 9-15 as a troupe, and were 7-11 against Kadri—but the Leafs center scored twice and this line did not score. Unfair? Sure, it was a penalty on the OT goal, but life happens and 97 is going to win way more of these battles than he loses. You cannot go to the McDavid well every night, because sometimes the water won’t wash over you. Last night was such a case.
  • The big line hasn’t scored in two games. What have we learned about regression? Stay tuned.

bear capture camp oil

Ethan Bear got off to a slower start this year, partly because Mathew Barzal is still a New York Islander. Bear, a 2015 draft pick by Edmonton who has already signed his pro deal, has come on in the last two weeks and now sits at 11gp, 3-6-9 for the year (NHLE: 82gp, 6-12-18).

Bear is from Ochapowace Nation, about two hours east (as I recall) from Regina. He was in that city to play the Regina Pats recently, and had a good night—including a goal. His comments appear in a Leader-Post article, discussing the loud cheers he received from supporters after scoring:

  • Bear: “It’s something I’ll remember for the rest of my life. I’m not sure if I’ll ever get anything like that again but that’s the support I get (from home). The way our culture supports one another is amazing. I’m very proud of that. I’m happy I was able to get one tonight and let them cheer for me. It was a very special moment.” Source

There are some truly heartbreaking things happening in Saskatchewan communities these days, to be honest I am sick about it. I was moved when reading this story, because it shows hope, the power of community and the fact we are all in this together. Every child deserves love and care, every child needs to know there is hope. We owe all children that much, at a minimum. I pray for those kids in Saskatchewan and that we find them a better day. There has to be something that can be done by all of us. I live in their community, they live in mine.

WAIVER PRIORITY

The Oilers lost a chance to grab someone off waivers, or at least to be a major priority, for the next month. Latest information has Edmonton far down the list (it is based on standings). Someone mentioned somewhere that Bob was talking 3C interest yesterday, and that makes sense. Names that come to mind (although not necessarily available) might be Patrik Berglund, Tyler Bozak, Nick Bonino. I doubt there are many actual helpers out there, but Peter Chiarelli is going to need to add something to this group if the idea of two substantial lines has value. Last night, we saw what happens when a team can focus on shutting down just one line.

JESSE PULJUJARVI

The young Finn has 21 shots on goal in eight games, and ranks inside the Top 10 rookies in the measure. Twitter is eating Jordan Eberle for breakfast but the fact is 14 is the only established offensive player on RW unless Todd McLellan moves Leon Draisaitl over. I imagine we see that in a practice soon, with Anton Lander (who is now 9gp, 1-2-3) moving to the middle on a makeshift 3line.

  • Lucic—McDavid—Eberle
  • Pouliot—Nuge—Draisaitl
  • Maroon—Lander—Puljujarvi
  • Pitlick—Letestu—Kassian

Or some such. Until such time as the 3C walks through the door, or Drake Caggiula can play, I think the Oilers—especially on the road—are going to need to ice two legit offensive lines. Too little talent for three scoring lines, unicorns in the distance.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN1260. All the sports! Scheduled to appear:

  • Bruce McCurdy, Cult of Hockey. In defense of Jordan Eberle, will Oilers fans every be truly happy?
  • Jeff Krushell, Krush Performance. G7 World Series! Look out!
  • Andy McNamara, TSN4Downs. The NFL product is alarming.

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

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150 Responses to "ROAD FOOD"

  1. meanashell11 says:

    I was disappointed with the refs but not with the Oilers game. They had opportunity to blow this open, ran into a hot goalie and gang tackling. On to New York.

  2. npanciroli says:

    Great recap LT. Sound and reasonable as always.

    I must admit that I lost it last night watching McDavid get mugged without any repercussions (penalties or Oiler beatdowns). Doesn’t help that I despise the Leafs.

    Klefbom Larsson great as usual. Easy to expect that every night.

    Time to try McDavid with new wingers IMO:

    Pouliot McDavid JP
    Lucic RNH Eberle
    Maroon Drai Kassian
    Lander Letestu Pitlick

    Also willing to try Pitlick on the top line with JP staying on that third line. I think the move for Lucic and Eberle benefits them as well.

  3. Washingtron says:

    I had allowed myself to hope the tire fire era was behind us, or at least far enough in the rear view it no longer looked closer than it appeared. Since I’m bad at both math and acronyms I only get to use my eyes, but it seemed to me the D’s inability to make clean passes within the D zone and into transition were at fault for a lot of the problems last night. Your numbers make me rethink that a little. But in a game where we have a billion first shots from the outside and no second chances in close the Corsi can’t still be trusted, can it?

    Anyhow, its a new feeling to go into a game feeling like the big scary one for a change. It’s also a new feeling to be frustrated by this team because they aren’t playing as well as they can rather than just cuz they aren’t playing well EVER. I am very excited to see how McD responds to wearing the Kadri goat horns last night. I’m also hoping the Oil can find secondary scoring from the top lines or a sniff on the PP or it’s Hack A Mac and a very long season.

  4. JJS says:

    npanciroli,

    I like this. McD would benefit from having wingers who can skate with him and aren’t afraid to shoot/not always defer to him. Both Poo and PJ fit that mold.

    Nuge plays such a good game along the boards – him and Lucic would be monsters down low. I think this pushes Eberle as he becomes the sniper for this line. Changes his focus.

    Someone send this to the coach before the morning skate!!

  5. npanciroli says:

    I also think they need to try and work in JP into the PP more.

  6. leadfarmer says:

    meanashell11:
    I was disappointed with the refs but not with the Oilers game. They had opportunity to blow this open, ran into a hot goalie and gang tackling. On to New York.

    Until the league realizes that fans don’t buy tickets to watch the star players get hooked slashed and mugged that is exactly what’s going to happen. The word is out on this team. Beat on McDavid and this team will fold like a cheap suit. While I like Kassian he doesn’t provide the offense that you need on Nuges wing

  7. 36 percent body fat says:

    Eberle is useless. you can talk about his scoring all you want, but when has he ever been the best player on his line. When has he been the second best player on his line. You can say horcoff or gagner were worse but one was a babysitter to allow eberle to not have to back check. This guy is such a floater and no energy, and the other was a similar but leeser player playing a tougher position.

    Eberle has been gifted minutes, linemates and scoring opportunities, and while the box car numbers are there he does not help this team. He is too slow for McDavid his lack luster one timer make him useless opposite McDavid on the top PP.

    We ran hall out of town because of character. Maybe he had an attitude, but there was way more passion there than Eberle, and he created more and drove the play much better.

    How much is Connor missing hall, and wishing that his teammates could drive the play a little better than they are now so he doesnt have to do it all.

  8. prefonmich says:

    JJS,

    The biggest issue with this team remains. Woeful PP. Until this is fixed, teams will begin to take more liberties because there is no fear of taking a penalty. I think this is what is happening against McDavid currently. Why not push the envelope against him? The refs won’t call it all and even when they do the PP of the Oilers is not a threat at best, and a complete momentum killer often times. It’s been this way for the entire time this coaching staff has been present and even longer. They seem loathe to change it up though?!

  9. Pouzar says:

    We are allowed to be slightly bullish on Darnell Nurse.
    All I heard when Justin Schultz was here (while being many years older) was that D-men
    need 200 games, just be patient, 200 games(or was it 300???) etc. etc….I don’t think Nurse gets afforded the same disclaimer around here imo.

    I am for one am thrilled with his progress through game 81 while playing a role set up for success.

  10. Durag says:

    meanashell11:
    I was disappointed with the refs but not with the Oilers game. They had opportunity to blow this open, ran into a hot goalie and gang tackling. On to New York.

    Is the consensus that Andersen stole one from us last night? I didn’t think he looked so good. Gave up a rebound on just about every shot, the problem was the Oilers’ forwards weren’t first to a single damn one of them.

  11. Pouzar says:

    ” Until such time as the 3C walks through the door, or Drake Caggiula can play, I think the Oilers—especially on the road—are going to need to ice two legit offensive lines. Too little talent for three scoring lines, unicorns in the distance.”

    Couldn’t agree more.

  12. supernova says:

    Great little bit on Ethan Bear.

    I learned to ski on the great hills of Ochapawace Nation.
    It no longer is running but just a little extra cheer for a RH Oilers draft pick.

    Go Bear Go!

  13. meanashell11 says:

    The guy faced almost 50 shots and gave up almost nothing. Was second star. I think Anderson played a very good game. Maybe we should have crashed the net some more but still…..

  14. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    36 percent body fat:

    We ran hall out of town because of character. Maybe he had an attitude, but there was way more passion there than Eberle, and he created more and drove the play much better.

    Not trying to get into an argument here, but what you fail to mention is that Hall had trade value that Eberle simply doesn’t have. If you think the return on Hall was weak you would have been amazed at how little Ebs brought back.

  15. dustrock says:

    Should have been a hold against Kadri, but they were playing in Toronto, and just like playing the Lakers in LA, you know the home team will get the benefit of the doubt.

    Good lesson for McDavid – a set play by Toronto and he got burned. Kinda hoped Talbot would bail him out, but don’t blame him that he didn’t.

    I am beginning to see Russell bad, and those who cautioned his early stats were an outlier might be right. Last few games I’ve seen much more scrambly play in the DZ when he’s on the ice.

    I still thought he was supposed to be a PP2 option, and I don’t understand why the 1-20 or whatever PP hasn’t tried using him more.

    On a more general note, it seems clear to me in the last 5 games that the NHL is permitting teams to interfere with McDavid in a dead puck era throwback.

    This is the league that would rather try for vanilla parity than allow the most exciting player in 20 years to be able to entertain the fanbase.

    He can’t be contained by a team following the rules, and the Oilers’ first 5 games were an indication of that. McLellan’s catenaccio system was based on a lethal counterattack from the McDavid line.

    People look at the lack of scoring from that line, and Eberle and Lucic recently, but it’s directly tied into teams hooking and holding McDavid. Lucic and Eberle benefited from the chaos that McDavid brings.

    The NBA and NFL change rules to benefit offence and to show off their superstars. The NHL does the opposite.

  16. Bag of Pucks says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: Not trying to get into an argument here, but what you fail to mention is that Hall had trade value that Eberle simply doesn’t have.If you think the return on Hall was weak you would have been amazed at how little Ebs brought back.

    Quoted for truth.

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

    Wow so much negativity in the last 18 hours when the team actually bolstered its lead ahead of most western teams, tough crowd on the ol Al Gore.

    Pouzar,

    I’m with you here, noticed a lot of really smart things with Nurse last night, most obvious being the walk across the line on the goal. Not the greatest shot but I like the instincts and thought he used his body well to fend off the check and get the shot away. Also noticed a lot of calm decisions with the puck in his own end (note I did not say 100% of his decisions were smart). He made a couple rushes and at least a few times read the play correctly and adjusted his moves. Remember he didn’t do these types of things last year, or at least he didn’t do them well. Positive arrows.

    I was also a huge fan of Klefbom’s decision to fire at will. Granted not all of the shots were great but I like that he’s shooting. Lost of folks saying the Oilers net front presence is lacking, I agree and i noticed on a lot of these point shots last night. Hopefully this will shift if the defense keep getting shots through.

    On the I “saw it bad” side, I noticed quite a few “off the glass and out” and stretch pass to nowhere plays by the D last night. Three games in a row now that I’ve noticed a higher proclivity to use those plays, not a good sign. Means the forwards aren’t coming back enough or the D are panicking quicker. Personally I think its a mix of the two but you’re mileage may very.

    leadfarmer,

    Truth, I love how the media hyped the McDavid/Matthews angle and nothing came of it. But I don’t think its as simple as mug McDavid and the team folds.The numbers show 3/4 lines having good to great nights, they didn’t cash mind you and that helps explain the loss but I don’t think the Oilers folded here (if they did its damn amazing they put up 46 shots).

  18. GMB3 says:

    Ca$h-McMoney!: Not trying to get into an argument here, but what you fail to mention is that Hall had trade value that Eberle simply doesn’t have.If you think the return on Hall was weak you would have been amazed at how little Ebs brought back.

    Judging by his comments I have the feeling he doesn’t think Eberle has trade value because of the faults he listed

  19. slopitch says:

    JP isn’t ready to play top line which is too bad because 14 needs a game or 2 on a different line to switch it up. Teams have figured out that neither 14 or 27 can really move the puck. I think they should try Nuge or Drai on RW with 97. Ebs had a bad game, numerous turnovers and not the good “trying to create offense” kind, he’ll rebound next game.

    RE McLellan last night. Late in the game and he doesn’t stack up the lines at all? Why not put 93-97-29 out for the last minute…

  20. jm363561 says:

    The Anton Lander Appreciation Society would like place on the record:

    AL’s cap hit is $1m – just over half that of Letestu and Hendricks.
    In the nine games he has played the PK is 93% (second in league) – the one game he missed it was 67%.
    His + / – is +4 (equal third on the team) despite tough zone starts.
    He has won 59% of his face offs (best in club by a mile)
    Total points (1-2-3). Points / 60 1.97, in the league top 150 (just). More goals than RNH, more points than Maroon.

    All of this with a mere 10.18 average TOI (2.27 short handed) and 4th line partners.

    Society membership applications may still be submitted,

    P.S. “Oscar … is a fine young blue. Eight shots, four blocked shots, he is a beauty”. And signed for seven years at $4.1m. A point never mentioned in Chia summaries (ditto, not waiving Davidson last year and two year value contract).

  21. Pouzar says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!: Wow so much negativity in the last 18 hours, when the team actually bolstered its lead among most western teams, tough crowd on the ol Al Gore.

    Yeah I don’t get it. Old habits.

  22. Bag of Pucks says:

    Would make sense that Kris Russell does not match up well against coke machines. 5’10” 180 pds.

    But here’s where I think we have to keep in mind that players shouldn’t be expected to do it all. Rather, it’s on the HC to find the right role for them to excel.

    Russell is a mobile, experienced veteran D that gives this team much needed depth at a position where its sorely needed. Once Davidson is healthy, and if Benning can give you some legitimate mins on occasion, now TMac has 8 legitimate choices and he can mix and match accordingly based on what’s best against the opposing team that evening. We now have 8 D truly competing to get out of or stay away from the press box. That is a very good thing.

    And, if Nurse continues at this rate, I think he’ll be the #4 by the deadline and Chia then has another trade chip. Nurse has yet to fully fill out, and he still is able to angle guys off and then lean on them into the boards which completely takes them out of the play. Give him another fifteen pounds and he’s a nightmare for small and average size forwards. And, as a he gets bigger, he’ll get meaner. This kid’s going to be a beast.

    All that said, shame on you again Oilers scouts for missing out on Colton Parayko right in your own backyard. Man, would he look good in Oiler silks.

  23. dustrock says:

    I wonder if the Nurse/Russell pairing actually makes more sense.

  24. CrazyCoach says:

    Hey LT,

    Thanks for the nice words on Ethan Bear. As you know, I’m a big fan of his mainly because, he, like myself, is bucking all the stats and seem to be thriving in a world where there is not much hope according to the stats.

    I believe kind words from folks like yourself, are one of many steps that lead to reconciliation and healing.

    I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that.

    Cheers
    Ben (crazycoach)

  25. npanciroli says:

    What has impressed me the most with this team this year is they don’t quit in games. I really didn’t expect them to keep coming back in the Toronto game.

    Bounces played a huge role in that game also.

  26. Bag of Pucks says:

    The irony with Eberle could be that he’s lauded for scoring 25-30 goals a season when he may actually have the talent to score 35-40 goals a season if he was committed to bringing a full effort each and every night.

    And, as always, the next game he scores a pretty goal, all the fanboys will crawl out of the woodwork again to remind us how great and underrated he is and how foolish we are for being a detractor.

    One of the few Oilers I can remember who gets credit for ‘trying’ harder in the Dzone. You know, as opposed to actually delivering results.

  27. seanjohn667 says:

    the problem with the McDavid line?

    one word: Eberle.

  28. T0ML says:

    Ehhh, Im going to say only some thought there were character issues …. of which I dont agree with.

    However I cant agree that “McDavid is missing Hall” …. Their time together amounted to nearly nothing, Hall would not have been McDavids winger…

    36 percent body fat:

    We ran hall out of town because of character. Maybe he had an attitude, but there was way more passion there than Eberle, and he created more and drove the play much better.

    How much is Connor missing hall, and wishing that his teammates could drive the play a little better than they are now so he doesnt have to do it all.

  29. theres oil in virginia says:

    Bag of Pucks: fanboys

    This is the kind of garbage we can do without.

  30. dustrock says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    The irony with Eberle could be that he’s lauded for scoring 25-30 goals a season when he may actually have the talent to score 35-40 goals a season if he was committed to bringing a full effort each and every night.

    And, as always, the next game he scores a pretty goal, all the fanboys will crawl out of the woodwork again to remind us how great and underrated he is and how foolish we are for being a detractor.

    One of the few Oilers I can remember who gets credit for ‘trying’ harder in the Dzone. You know, as opposed to actually delivering results.

    He’s never been a banger, and I think he’s never realized or cared that even the 40 goal scorers get a lot of garbage goals. And other than maybe 5-10 players in the entire NHL, no player is effective every one of the 82 games. He still outscores most of his peers. That’s just how hard scoring is.

    I actually thought he was delivering results early in the season in terms of backchecking and board battles in the DZ. Last few games he’s backed off a bit and has been floating again.

  31. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    jm363561:
    The Anton Lander Appreciation Society would like place on the record:

    AL’s cap hit is $1m – just over half that of Letestu and Hendricks.
    In the nine games he has played the PK is 93% (second in league) – the one game he missed it was 67%.
    His + / – is +4 (equal third on the team) despite tough zone starts.
    He has won 59% of his face offs (best in club by a mile)
    Total points (1-2-3).Points / 60 1.97, in the league top 150 (just). More goals than RNH, more points than Maroon.

    All of this with a mere 10.18 average TOI (2.27 short handed) and 4th line partners.

    Society membership applications may still be submitted,

    P.S. “Oscar … is a fine young blue. Eight shots, four blocked shots, he is a beauty”. And signed for seven years at $4.1m. A point never mentioned in Chia summaries (ditto, not waiving Davidson last year and two year value contract).

    I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again:

    This team already has some very expensive forwards, and it’s only going to get worse with Leon/McDavid/Maroon needing raises soon (some more than others, obviously).

    We will need, in my opinion, at least 4 forwards who can play at an NHL level for $1million or less. Some of those will be younger guys who bring offense, but that won’t be everyone. Maybe more.

    If we can hang on to Lander at that price for 3 or 4 more years, I say do it. We will need guys who can saw off mediocre competition at a price that it costs us nothing or virtually nothing to bury them in the minors. We will not be able to afford any more Hendricks/Letestu contracts. Those were fine before, but once they run out their replacements will absolutely have to be cheaper.

  32. Bag of Pucks says:

    seanjohn667:
    the problem with the McDavid line?

    one word:Eberle.

    McDavid penetrates the O zone so well, he’s going to generate a TON of shots, and more importantly for his linemates, a TON of rebounds.

    With that in mind, I think the best possible linemates are guys with hands that can fight through traffic to pounce on those rebounds.

    Eberle’s strength is shooting off the rush or finding open lanes to take passes from linemates off the cycle. He’s too slow to keep up with McDavid off the rush and he won’t go to the paint for rebounds, so he really only adds value once the rush devolves into a cycle. And that’s not his greatest strength.

    JP is the future for McDavid. Where Eberle fits I don’t know, cos if you put him back with RNH, now your shutdown line has a weak defensive F.

    Leon and Jordan? Let’s hope they can feast on the soft matchups.

  33. npanciroli says:

    Eberle is a great player, just doesn’t seem to be meshing well with McDavid. Give him a shot with RNH – it will benefit both of them. Need a speedier player with McDavid. Surprised they haven’t auditioned guys like JP, Kassian, Pitlick. You never know when guys have chemistry and McDavid can zoom them.

    Lucic RNH and Eberle would be a line that can drive offence and McDavid can do it with Pouliot and a pylon.

    Maroon Drai and JP are starting to drive offence as well. I’m not too worried about the forwards just need to mix the lines better.

  34. Doug McLachlan says:

    npanciroli:
    Great recap LT. Sound and reasonable as always.

    I must admit that I lost it last night watching McDavid get mugged without any repercussions (penalties or Oiler beatdowns). Doesn’t help that I despise the Leafs.

    Klefbom Larsson great as usual. Easy to expect that every night.

    Time to try McDavid with new wingers IMO:

    Pouliot McDavid JP
    Lucic RNH Eberle
    Maroon Drai Kassian
    Lander Letestu Pitlick

    Also willing to try Pitlick on the top line with JP staying on that third line. I think the move for Lucic and Eberle benefits them as well.

    This is exactly the line-up we should be running.

    Lucic needs a center who he can keep up with (Krejci/Kopitar) and Nuge fits the bill. Eberle is looking snake-bit and having him with a more familiar pivot would be welcome.

    Pouliot has the speed to give and go with McDavid in a way that no-one else, currently, on the squad can while the big Finn has really, really impressed me on both sides of the puck. He is why Chia felt that Hall could be dealt – he has only “disappointed” offensively (posts, crossbars, etc) not defensively. So close to exploding – time to light the fuse.

    Love the size of your third line! Maroon has been a revelation for me since Chia acquired him (with Anaheim footing part of the bill to boot!!) any plan that requires Leon to be pulled from the center does not make sense to me. Go wreck havoc with this trio and see what happens.

    I’ve been really impressed with our fourth line all season. Pitlick has figured it out. Lander and Letestu are not being asked to play too far from their comfort zone and the results have been positive.

    Next task, the PP.

  35. theres oil in virginia says:

    36 percent body fat:
    Eberle is useless.you can talk about his scoring all you want, but when has he ever been the best player on his line.When has he been the second best player on his line.You can say horcoff or gagner were worse but one was a babysitter to allow eberle to not have to back check.This guy is such a floater and no energy, and the other was a similar but leeser player playing a tougher position.

    Eberle has been gifted minutes, linemates and scoring opportunities, and while the box car numbers are there he does not help this team.He is too slow for McDavid his lack luster one timer make him useless opposite McDavid on the top PP.

    We ran hall out of town because of character. Maybe he had an attitude, but there was way more passion there than Eberle, and he created more and drove the play much better.

    How much is Connor missing hall, and wishing that his teammates could drive the play a little better than they are now so he doesnt have to do it all.

    Most of the above is out of left field, imo. No one ran Hall out of town. The GM, desperate to upgrade his defense, used the best trade chip he had (short of the nuclear option) to acquire the best RHD he could. Most fans would be very happy to still have Hall on the team.

    Maybe just take a breath and put things in perspective for a moment. The team won a bunch of games and looked better than they were, now they’ve lost a couple (and got a stupid point with the last “loss”) and they’re the worst team in the league again. Don’t be so swayed by every breeze.

  36. Pink Socks says:

    I only saw bits and pieces last night (thanks NHL.tv), but I did want to chime in on a few things.

    Nurse – really like the progress, even without that puck finding the back of the net, he is making smart decisions, and like one poster mentioned, he still hasn’t filled out. If he does manage to continue this trend we are in great shape.

    Eberle – disappointing to see him back off a bit the last few games, but this is a player I want to see in the playoffs. I do think he is better suited with RNH and having someone else flank McDavid while also giving RNH a sniper option.

    McDavid – pretty garbage non-call on the OT winner, but LT as always said it best, he is going to win more of these battles than he loses, even with the blatant holds and hooks.

    3C – Caggiula will be a welcome addition to add the skill to play alongside Maroon and JP/Slep while adding Drai to a top line.

    Once he is back my ideal scenario:

    Pouliot – McDavid – Draisaitl
    Lucic – RNH – Eberle
    Maroon – Caggiula – Slepyshev
    Lander/Pitlick – Letestu – Kassian

    Edit: JP better suited to get some more time and have more success in Bakersfield.

  37. Pink Socks says:

    theres oil in virginia: Most of the above is out of left field, imo.No one ran Hall out of town.The GM, desperate to upgrade his defense, used the best trade chip he had (short of the nuclear option) to acquire the best RHD he could.Most fans would be very happy to still have Hall on the team.

    Quoted for extreme truth. Hall would still be great on this team, but he was the only option to get a top pairing calibre RHD short of trading someone else that would have led to Rogers being burned to the ground.

  38. dustrock says:

    Like I said, was not surprised whatsoever at the non-call in OT.

    The much more egregious non-call was at the beginning of the game when Kadri also scored after McDavid was molested.

  39. Pouzar says:

    theres oil in virginia: This is the kind of garbage we can do without.

    This.
    Take it to “you know where”.

    GO CUBS!

  40. bendelson says:

    Pouzar: GO CUBS

    Go Cleveland!
    (never thought I’d say that)
    Disappoint the world and win tonight.

  41. leadfarmer says:

    I am not liking TMacs inability to adjust to the game properly. Once he saw that Babcock was going to grind Mcdavids line he needs to take his only RW that can put more than 40 pts off that line. Eberle is not going to protect McDavid and he is quite terrible at the grinding game and not good at breaking the trap. He needs to move the offense to the other lines. Bring Kassian and Marroon up to play with McDavid to beat Kadri into a pulp for two periods creating room in the 3rd for McDavid. In the meantime overload your offense to the second and third line with Lucic Drai and JP and Pou nuge Ebs. Toronto doesn’t have the depth to handle 3 lines. Instead TMac just fell into Babcock game plan where he took out two of our best offensive weapons with one line.

  42. JDï™ says:

    Pouzar: GO CUBS!

    Bear Cubs?

  43. who says:

    leadfarmer:
    I am not liking TMacs inability to adjust to the game properly.Once he saw that Babcock was going to grind Mcdavids line he needs to take his only RW that can put more than 40 pts off that line.Eberle is not going to protect McDavid and he is quite terrible at the grinding game and not good at breaking the trap.He needs to move the offense to the other lines.Bring Kassian and Marroon up to play with McDavid to beat Kadri into a pulp for two periods creating room in the 3rd for McDavid.In the meantime overload your offense to the second and third line with Lucic Drai and JP and Pou nuge Ebs.Toronto doesn’t have the depth to handle 3 lines.Instead TMac just fell into Babcock game plan where he took out two of our best offensive weapons with one line.

    Yeah I guess we see the game the same way. The easiest thing to do would have been to swap Connor for Nuge who was going good. Let Kadri check guys like Kassian and Poo instead of Eberle and Lucic. Don’t think it would have impacted Connors game and it may have given Nuge the offensive boost he needs. He is playing great right now but has nothing to show for it.

  44. leadfarmer says:

    Really wish this team sent Nurse to the Ahl last year to spend 4 min learning how to qb a pp instead of getting his teeth kicked in. I think he’d be better at it then most.

  45. leadfarmer says:

    who,

    Without adjustments like that were not winning too many away games this year

  46. russ99 says:

    I’d hope that McLellan has enough evidence of subtle and blatant infractions against McDavid without calls to send a video to the league office.

    You want to market the young star players, but then you let them openly be mugged at the same time, super irritating.

    As a North Side Chicagoan born and bred on the South Side, and having been to 15 big league ballparks and soccer stadiums internationally, in my experience Cubs fans are the most annoying fans in the entire world. Having the Cubs win the series would be like when you were a kid you’d go to the biggest bully in the neighborhood and let him beat you up every morning. These clowns would never let it rest.

    Go Indians.

  47. Bag of Pucks says:

    Would love to see the blender spit this out one day:

    Maroon / McDavid / JP
    Pouliot / RNH / Kassian
    Lucic / Draisaitl / Eberle
    Sleppy / Letestu / Pitlick

  48. stush18 says:

    The problem with trying to switch up lines last night is the second and third lines were working well, so you usually take the first lines sawing off.

    Good performance by Anderson. But I also think ebs should move down to nuge line. Why play your top lw, rw, and centre on one line.

  49. McSorley33 says:

    It is not just last night….can anyone really say Looch and Ebs have chemistry with McDavid?

    I am a huge fan of Looch…but the speed/quickness differential is too great. In addition, I am not sure
    Looch can get to fore check effectively against quick First D pairings.

    Hence: I would like to see him moved down the lineup card.

    GMoney’s Nerd Alert:

    the Oilers won on the raw metrics but ****lost on the dangerous ones***

  50. Bag of Pucks says:

    russ99:
    I’d hope that McLellan has enough evidence of subtle and blatant infractions against McDavid without calls to send a video to the league office.

    You want to market the young star players, but then you let them openly be mugged at the same time, super irritating.

    As a North Side Chicagoan born and bred on the South Side, and having been to 15 big league ballparks and soccer stadiums internationally, in my experience Cubs fans are the most annoying fans in the entire world. Having the Cubs win the series would be like when you were a kid you’d go to the biggest bully in the neighborhood and let him beat you up every morning. These clowns would never let it rest.

    Go Indians.

    I would think a fanbase that has gone 108 years without a championship is entitled to a little emotional dysfunction, no? They get no props for supporting the team throughout?

  51. Lois Lowe says:

    As much as I don’t want to dump on Eberle, I think he may benefit from joining Nuge and Pouliot. He’s played with Nuge almost his entire career and I think that line could saw off almost anyone.

  52. Wolfie says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Would love to see the blender spit this out one day:

    Maroon / McDavid / JP
    Pouliot / RNH / Kassian
    Lucic / Draisaitl / Eberle
    Sleppy / Letestu / Pitlick

    I like this with the exception of switching Kassian and Eberle…

    The NHL needs to rip a page out of the NBA’s playbook… Let your stars be the stars! To allow the clutch, grab, broad daylight mugging of your most marketable players is why the NHL will never be on par with MLB, NBA and NFL. Until they make a conscious effort to enforce the rules in a way that lets Crosby, McDavid, Kane, Matthews and all the super talented players impact every game.

    The only reason McDavid was kept in check is because the Leafs were allowed to break the rules repeatedly without repercussion. They ran interference on McDavid just about every time a puck was headed his way.

  53. leadfarmer says:

    Wolfie,

    I especially like the one play were McDavid dumped it behind the leafs and was touched by 3 players on his way to retrieve it

  54. Bag of Pucks says:

    Wolfie: I like this with the exception of switching Kassian and Eberle…

    The NHL needs to rip a page out of the NBA’s playbook…Let your stars be the stars!To allow the clutch, grab, broad daylight mugging of your most marketable players is why the NHL will never be on par with MLB, NBA and NFL.Until they make a conscious effort to enforce the rules in a way that lets Crosby, McDavid, Kane, Matthews and all the super talented players impact every game.

    The only reason McDavid was kept in check is because the Leafs were allowed to break the rules repeatedly without repercussion.They ran interference on McDavid just about every time a puck was headed his way.

    The reason I went this route with Kassian vs Eberle, is I like Leon more as an offensive C and RNH more in the shutdown role. So, I envision Leon getting a softer matchup and wanted to give him the winger with the better skills to cash.

    I also like at least one of our big Ws (i.e. Lucic or Maroon or Kassian) riding shotgun on RNH’s wing. It gives each of our lines the abilities to rush or cycle as the situation warrants. I think it is possible that Kassian has a late career breakout year. He was drafted 13th OV and projected as a power forward that can play with skill until the off ice stuff derailed him.

    Agree on the obstruction. The less the better, though I do appreciate the way Connor deals with it. He’s got exactly the right percentage of *ahole* to be a good Captain : )

  55. alice13 says:

    On the winning goal I don’t think ‘lost his position’ and ‘holding by Kadri’ are the story.

    When McDavid saw the puck he was even with Kadri. What he did then was lean towards it and reach for it with his stick. What he did Not do was take a step towards it first. When do you lean at a puck instead of skating? When you’re a forward who’s in his 23rd minute of icetime.

    Kadri stuck his arm out once Connor ceded him position, but as long as he doesn’t grab something he’s really just making his body wider and harder to get around. If Connor was flying past him to get a loose puck you would call it interference, but if you looked at someone protecting the puck while cycling down low it would be entirely unremarkable.

    McDavid can play against anyone, so on the road TMc should let the other team worry about him, and concentrate instead on how to defend the Other team. If Connor faces the vaunt and can only saw off, then there should be some other flanks opening up for Nuge & Co. Instead he flailed about with McDavid, and the coach who brought the best player in the game left with the loss. I have to agree with Babcock’s comments on this – McLellan jumped the shark.

  56. Bos8 says:

    Yes, Babcott out coached TMac. I’ve never been a fan of system coaches unless they can adjust the system to their personnel. Time for the Oilers coaches to adjust. Toronto does have the speed to keep up with McD where other teams don’t. But that will be the plan on McD going forward,obstruction.

  57. Bag of Pucks says:

    theres oil in virginia: This is the kind of garbage we can do without.

    I’m not saying all Eberle supporters are fanboys. I’m saying there is a segment of his supporters, as there is for Hall, Yakupov, and pretty much every fan favourite player, that jumps on small sample size highlights to crow about their guy and disparage detractors. By its very definition, that is fanboy behavior, and imo is deserving of derision. This is a community that favours an overall body of work.

    Incidentally, this is why I find one of the supporting arguments for Eberle so bizarre, which is the argument that he does the hardest thing well (i.e. score goals) so the rest of his body of work (i.e. in the other 2/3rds of the rink) should therefore be discounted or at the very least marginalized in importance.

    Scoring goals in the NHL is not the hardest thing to do. Scoring goals whilst still being a responsible two way player is. In shortchanging his defensive game, Eberle essentially makes a choice for a style of game that better rewards individual accomplishment over team accomplishment. It’s never been a skill issue with Eberle. It’s always been about effort and personally, that is why I’m not a supporter. The one things I think it’s fair to expect, particularly amongst your highest paid players, is maximum effort.

    At this level, where the ‘effort’ really begins is with the training. The better shape a player is in, the better they can maintain their effort through a period, game, season, etc. From all accounts, Eberle has never been a huge workout guy. So, what you get, is a player that picks his spots based on what he has in the tank.

  58. Oddspell says:

    For anyone who might be interested, Fivethirtyeight has a podcast on Charlie Reep, the analytics man who invented longball soccer based on misinterpreting data. It’s a fun little story I figured folks here might like (unless you’re English I suppose), although some cursory googling sheds some bias in the storytelling. They also have another podcast on Russian NHLers, but I haven’t listened to it yet.

    Forgive me if someone’s already shared.

    http://fivethirtyeight.com/features/how-one-mans-bad-math-helped-ruin-decades-of-english-soccer/

  59. leadfarmer says:

    So with the mess in Brooklyn how long before Hamonic asks out again. Not the defenseman we need but would certainly help

  60. Bos8 says:

    This is still ten games in, need at least another ten games to adjust to the adjustments. This is the shakedown portion for the good ship, Oiler.

  61. Jethro Tull says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    I have argued this with you many times over Eberle, I’ve even cited and posted the numbers to prove you wrong, yet you’re still banging the drum against him. What’s the opposite of fanboy? You’re that.

    Eberle is a good NHL RW. He’s bona fide. As a counter to your argument, Connor also played regular shifts with both Kassian and Puljujarvi last night. Didn’t exactly set the wprld alight did they?

  62. Pretendergast says:

    I watched Bear last night in Saskatoon, only time in the last 2 years the Thunderbirds have made the trek East.

    He is their best defenceman full stop. He played in every situation (very aggressively). The Blades aren’t that strong but by the third they completely ignored going to his side Revis style. He hit them, he stole the puck, nothing they could do.

    I counted 3 ‘third’ assists in the game; all play flowed through him on the powerplay.
    Would’ve had 2 goals if his stick didn’t shatter twice.

    The most interesting part was the large Seattle contingent who came to watch. Even when the crowd giveaway guy told a kid to cheer the team on he said without hesitation ‘Go Seattle!”.

    Only flaw I saw was skating, he would be flat but I point that towards saving energy against a team that didn’t pose much of a challenge to him. He could recover anyway.

  63. Side says:

    Bag of Pucks: I’m not saying all Eberle supporters are fanboys. I’m saying there is a segment of his supporters, as there is for Hall, Yakupov, and pretty much every fan favourite player, that jumps on small sample size highlights to crow about their guy and disparage detractors. By its very definition, that is fanboy behavior, and imo is deserving of derision. This is a community that favours an overall body of work.

    Do you have an overall body of work which shows how Eberle lacks “effort”, is not in as good shape as he could be and prefers to play a way that would benefit him more as an individual, rather than the team?

    Seems kind of odd to discuss how sample sizes and statistical results are preferred and then criticize a player for intangible things.

    “Eberle may have a lot of goals, but my eye says he refused to skate harder on that defensive play because he lacks effort, is not in the best shape he could be and is not a team player”

  64. Bag of Pucks says:

    Side: Do you have an overall body of work which shows how Eberle lacks “effort”, is not in as goodshape as he could be and prefers to play a way that would benefit him more as an individual, rather than the team?

    Seems kind of odd to discuss how sample sizes and statistical results are preferred and then criticize a player for intangible things.

    “Eberle may have a lot of goals, but my eye says he refused to skate harder on that defensive play because he lacks effort, is not in the best shape he could be and is not a team player”

    The training issue stuff is in the public domain if you look for it. In his exit interview last year, he was challenged by the coaching staff to substantially improve his conditioning, as well as his onetimer.

    I’m not chasing down links for you. You can do your own homework.

  65. Bag of Pucks says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Bag of Pucks,

    I have argued this with you many times over Eberle, I’ve even cited and posted the numbers to prove you wrong, yet you’re still banging the drum against him. What’s the opposite of fanboy? You’re that.

    Eberle is a good NHL RW. He’s bona fide. As a counter to your argument, Connor also played regular shifts with both Kassian and Puljujarvi last night. Didn’t exactly set the wprld alight did they?

    All the arguments pro rely on his offensive production. There’s never been a conclusive analysis proving his worth on the other side of the puck, Produce that and I’ll gladly retract.

    It’s not numbers vs intangibles. It’s quantitative and qualitative.

    If he’s so bona-fide, why did he have so much less value than Hall? Could it be the other teams see the defensive and boardwork deficiencies?

    Serious question, do you never see Eberle cheat for offense or make a token effort on defense? Are you of the belief these things don’t exist? If so, there is no point in discussing it further because our ‘eye tests’ on this player will never align and I’m of the opinion that qualitative is every bit as important as quantitative in the overall analysis. They’re meant to compliment not compete.

  66. delooper says:

    leadfarmer:
    I am not liking TMacs inability to adjust to the game properly.Once he saw that Babcock was going to grind Mcdavids line he needs to take his only RW that can put more than 40 pts off that line.Eberle is not going to protect McDavid and he is quite terrible at the grinding game and not good at breaking the trap.He needs to move the offense to the other lines.Bring Kassian and Marroon up to play with McDavid to beat Kadri into a pulp for two periods creating room in the 3rd for McDavid.In the meantime overload your offense to the second and third line with Lucic Drai and JP and Pou nuge Ebs.Toronto doesn’t have the depth to handle 3 lines.Instead TMac just fell into Babcock game plan where he took out two of our best offensive weapons with one line.

    It’s not clear McLellan was taking the game as a “win at any cost” opportunity. I imagine he wanted to see how that line did, for a sustained period of time under serious “heavy” checking. Could they adapt? He wanted to give them a chance.

    I suspect he’ll give that line a few more chances before he starts replacing Eberle with Maroon.

    McLellan often talks about how the team is still learning. That means not always doing things that are “short-term optimal”.

  67. theWaxCollector says:

    I’d love to see Lucic, McDavid, and Draisaitl top line. Possession monsters who would simply will the puck into the net. Gives us a second line of Pou, Nuge, and Ebs who frankly can all shoot fairly well

  68. Side says:

    Bag of Pucks: The training issue stuff is in the public domain if you look for it. In his exit interview last year, he was challenged by the coaching staff to substantially improve his conditioning, as well as his onetimer.

    I’m not chasing down links for you. You can do your own homework.

    Googled “eberle conditioning” “todd mclellan on eberle’s conditioning” wasn’t at the top or in any of the results. Have a link? Regardless, the point of mine still stands. Seems strange that you, someone who prefers looking at the stats about a player, is hating on Eberle for things that aren’t measurable and may be subject to your own bias, and then telling someone else that this is a community that favours an overall body of work.

    Also, you mentioned “exit interview” last year. This is a new year, isn’t it? Do you have anything that suggests Eberle did not do any training this year before this season? Or are you timing how quickly Eberle goes from one end of the ice to the other and comparing last years game footage of Eberle’s to this year’s?

  69. Jethro Tull says:

    Bag of Pucks: All the arguments pro rely on his offensive production. There’s never been a conclusive analysis proving his worth on the other side of the puck, Produce that and I’ll gladly retract.

    It’s not numbers vs intangibles. It’s quantitative and qualitative.

    If he’s so bona-fide, why did he have so much less value than Hall? Could it be the other teams see the defensive and boardwork deficiencies?

    It’s not about numbers and intangibles, it’s about qualitative and quantitative? Numbers equal quantitative. Intangibles can’t be named, so I’ll give you that. They’re anti-qualitative.

    You’re talking as if Eberle has been traded and got less than Hall. That’s speculative and unprovable. In any case, i think everyone can agree that Hall’s value IS higher than Eberle’s, so you answered your own question.

    And i did provide Eberle’s defensive stats. Not my problem you don’t accept them. And I’m not jumping through the same hoops ad perpetuum every time we lose and you decide it was Eberle’s fault.

    Your only defence so far boils down to “if he’s so good, how come we didn’t trade him for someone better than what we traded a better player for.” The old “if he’s so great, how come he’s dead” defence.

    The thing is, the only two ways you will ever like Eberle is if he scores 50 in a season whilst having the most hits, fights and ppms, or morphs into Ovechkin.

  70. theres oil in virginia says:

    Bag of Pucks: I’m not saying all Eberle supporters are fanboys. I’m saying there is a segment of his supporters, as there is for Hall, Yakupov, and pretty much every fan favourite player, that jumps on small sample size highlights to crow about their guy and disparage detractors. By its very definition, that is fanboy behavior, and imo is deserving of derision.

    Yes, but it wasn’t the “fanboys” who were disparaging anyone. You used a term that is designed to incite the exact kind of behavior that you are complaining about seeing.

    This is kind of like saying “I saw the look in his eyes, he was going to disparage me! So, I disparaged him first.” (That sounds like something out of a Mel Brooks movie. 🙂 )

    Scoring goals in the NHL is not the hardest thing to do. Scoring goals whilst still being a responsible two way player is.

    So, doing two difficult things (plural) is the hardest thing (singular) to do. Why stop there, why not add a third, or a fourth thing and make them (plural) all the hardest thing (singular) to do.

  71. theres oil in virginia says:

    Bag of Pucks: I’m not chasing down links for you. You can do your own homework.

    So, you make an assertion, and you want the opposition to hunt down the documentation to prove its veracity. Where’s “Steve Smith” when you need him.

  72. Doug McLachlan says:

    dustrock:
    I wonder if the Nurse/Russell pairing actually makes more sense.

    I had wondered this myself. Russell, as Woodguy and others were trying to show at the time of the signing, may well be good by numbers as well as by eye so long as he’s in a third-pairing situation. Higher up the table and it gets more challenging.

  73. frjohnk says:

    Doug McLachlan: I had wondered this myself.Russell, as Woodguy and others were trying to show at the time of the signing, may well be good by numbers as well as by eye so long as he’s in a third-pairing situation.Higher up the table and it gets more challenging.

    It would be nice to have a healthy Davidson to find this out.

  74. Bag of Pucks says:

    theres oil in virginia: So, you make an assertion, and you want the opposition to hunt down the documentation to prove its veracity.Where’s “Steve Smith” when you need him.

    This is a classic Internet mindset, this idea that we have to do all of the legwork to satisfy any skeptic or doubting thomas that crawls out of the woodwork. I’ve told you the source of the information. I shouldn’t have to spoon feed it to you as well. Inform yourself and if you still disagree fine, but the burden is not on me to ensure you’re fully informed on any and all issues you may choose to disagree.

  75. Spoils says:

    I agree with the chatter about needing to shake things up with the fw lines.

    JP versus Draisaitl on RW you probably pick Leon with a normal center, but under the wings of Connor, JP feels just as likely to work. Plus I like the the 3 line attack.

    Lucic-McDavid-Jesse Puljajarvi (fresh)
    Pouliot-RNH-Eberle (old chemistry)
    Maroon-Draisaitl-Kassian (big bodies)
    Lander-Letestu-Pitlick (good in TO)

  76. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    Wolfie

    The only reason McDavid was kept in check is because the Leafs were allowed to break the rules repeatedly without repercussion.They ran interference on McDavid just about every time a puck was headed his way.

    But it would take the oilers 10 powerplays to score one – if the pp was even average teams would soon stop the BS .

    The pp needs to be addressed.

  77. Bag of Pucks says:

    Jethro Tull

    And i did provide Eberle’s defensive stats. Not my problem you don’t accept them.

    Source?

  78. theres oil in virginia says:

    Bag of Pucks: This is a classic Internet mindset, this idea that we have to do all of the legwork to satisfy any skeptic or doubting thomas that crawls out of the woodwork. I’ve told you the source of the information. I shouldn’t have to spoon feed it to you as well. Inform yourself and if you still disagree fine, but the burden is not on me to ensure you’re fully informed on any and all issues you may choose to disagree.

    Well no, by all means, continue to make claims without providing any evidence of the claim, and I’ll happily continue to dismiss them. I’m certainly not going to go out of my way to “fully inform” myself of every claim you make.

    I’m not sure why you see it that way, but carry on if you will.

  79. JimmyV1965 says:

    The success of this team is directly related to the power play. With McDavid, we should have a top
    10 PP in this league. If we don’t, it will be a struggle to make the playoffs. And I don’t think the biggest issue is the point shot. This team simply takes too long to get set up on the PP. We usually waste more than 30 seconds fumbling around and way too often get only a single shot on net. To me, this is coaching. There is no way a team like this should have a garbage PP, regardless of who’s manning the point.

  80. Melman says:

    i realize it’s a tall order on the road, but it would be worth it to take a look at:

    Lucic- McD – JP
    Poo- Nuge- Ebs
    Maroon-Drai-Kassian
    Lander-Testy-Pitlick

    JP has been quite responsible defensively and can scoot. Eberle has + history with Nuge, and that 3rd line is beef x 3

  81. Side says:

    Bag of Pucks: This is a classic Internet mindset, this idea that we have to do all of the legwork to satisfy any skeptic or doubting thomas that crawls out of the woodwork. I’ve told you the source of the information. I shouldn’t have to spoon feed it to you as well. Inform yourself and if you still disagree fine, but the burden is not on me to ensure you’re fully informed on any and all issues you may choose to disagree.

    In my case, you told me to look at “his exit interview”. Which exit interview is that? Is this Todd’s exit interview, or Eberle’s? There’s a lot of interviews players conduct throughout the season and they are typically in short, or lengthy videos.

    Do you really expect people to comb through all of the videos your argument COULD apply to and expect them to watch them all to find the point you are apparently pulling out of nowhere?

    “Google it yourself” only really applies when information you are asking people to Google is easily found and is readily available.

    Like “Why are you asking me what the capital of Alberta is? Google it yourself” makes sense

    But, “google a exit interview, which exit interview I won’t tell you, so watch them all to be sure you come across the point I’m making” is not feasible or realistic and is well, just lazy. It also makes it seem like you’re intentionally making the information difficult to find because you don’t want your point challenged.

  82. LadiesloveSmid says:

    RNH needs better wingers and if we talked merit all summer for Yak on the top line, Eberle deserves to be 2nd fiddle with RNH.

    Pouliot-McDavid-JP
    Maroon-RNH-Eberle
    Lucic-Draisaitl-Kass

  83. delooper says:

    IMO it’s time to send JP down. Putting him on the first line is just going to expose him too much. He needs time to adjust, and get used to thinking at close to the NHL speed. He’s doing well but that’s not a reason to impede his development.

  84. Bag of Pucks says:

    Side: Googled “eberle conditioning” “todd mclellan on eberle’s conditioning” wasn’t at the top or in any of the results. Have a link?Regardless, the point of mine still stands.Seems strange that you, someone who prefers looking at the stats about a player, is hating on Eberle for things that aren’t measurable and may be subject to your own bias, and then telling someone else that this is a community that favours an overall body of work.

    It’s not strange so much as it is an inability of current metrics to quantify defensive contributions to the same extent that they quantify offensive contributions.

    Our current belief is that a player losing a board battle or not marking their man in the defensive zone will show up fully in the data expression as impacting corsi.

    This has been an ongoing topic for quite some time now (i..e how the defensive defenceman is not adequately quantified by current analytics) and most certainly helps to explain the increased focus on high danger scoring chance metrics as opposed to focusing on shot volume data alone.

    Having played on teams with goalsucks or guys who half-ass on the backcheck (i.e. guys who cheat for offense), what you find is that teams and coaches adjust. The purest expression of this adjustment is you don’t throw the player out for a defensive zone draw or the opposing winger is less aggressive cos he’s leery of goalsuck not getting back to cover. What you thus lose is the team as a whole generates less than optimal results. Every board battle lost means more time fighting to regain possession. Every man unmarked potentially results in more offensive zone time for the opposition. Just because these isolated incidents may not always lead to shots against on a given shift (i.e. corsi against) doesn’t mean they don’t have an impact. These things fatigue teams. They have an impact on the overall result. We just haven’t arrived at a place yet to accurately quantify it all. Until we do, qualitative will retain importance.

    Who knows? Chip in puck may eliminate the ‘eye test’ for good, but we’re not nearly there yet and to suggest otherwise is specious imo.

  85. Bruce McCurdy says:

    delooper:
    IMO it’s time to send JP down.Putting him on the first line is just going to expose him too much.He needs time to adjust, and get used to thinking at close to the NHL speed. He’s doing well but that’s not a reason to impede his development.

    How does doing well impede his development?

  86. Lucinius says:

    Eberle being weak defensively is, well, blatantly obvious if you simply watch the games. He is, more often than not, in the wrong position or out of position due to cheating for offense. There is actually nothing wrong with that, either. Those players have a definite role in the NHL, especially when they have the talent to produce offensively, which Eberle does.You simply have to have the coaching staff account for it (and I’m not sold on our coaching staff being great at mid-game adaptations).

    The problem with Eberle isn’t really his defensive weaknesses.

    The problem with Eberle has always been one of effort; even in the offensive zone the guy is very inconsistent as to how hard he will fight for the puck or follow the play. Sometimes he battles hard. Sometimes he battles as little as humanly possible. Sometimes it is somewhere in the middle. And then there’s his effort level in the defensive zone, which almost always trails his effort level in the offensive zone.

    That is why a segment here have always been critical of Eberle (myself included). He is an incredible player and someone who you very much want on your team. However, he is also incredibly frustrating because he almost never delivers a full game, and sometimes seems to phone in full games (i.e.; he doesn’t seem to put much effort forward in those games). It drives you nuts because he is a good player who could be a great player if he only worked harder.

    That said, I don’t blame him (completely). I blame the Oilers and the various coaching staffs they’ve had since he came into the league. He’s never really had to pay for lack of effort. He has, on many an occasion, played a poor game by any accounting.. and doesn’t see a single second lost to benching.

    And this doesn’t take into account the various injuries he’s had to deal with (and at times, play through).

    I’m not saying “trade that bum!!”. I’m saying “damn, he could be so much better if he only worked harder!”. Unfortunately, for the Oilers to take another step towards being an elite team, he is one of the (several) players the Oilers need to have step up. So far he hasn’t and it is disappointing.

  87. Lucinius says:

    All that aside…

    I’m really glad to see Lander doing well. In a way he is the complete opposite of Eberle; lots of effort, little skill (or, perhaps more accurately, a baffling inability to translate his offensive skill at the NHL level with most coaches/systems), but makes up for it by simply being ‘useful’ in so many little ways.

    He is one of the unsung heroes on the Oilers this year, imo. I see very little to complain about with the bottom six so far, which is.. refreshing.

  88. npanciroli says:

    JP looks like he will develop fine in the NHL. I wouldn’t be too worried about him staying the whole year.

  89. Fog of Warts says:

    dustrock: I actually thought he was delivering results early in the season in terms of backchecking and board battles in the DZ. Last few games he’s backed off a bit and has been floating again.

    FWIW, Stauffer very clearly stated during the CHED game call that Eberle has got something, and he’s playing through it. No timeframe indicated, in either direction.

  90. Bag of Pucks says:

    Side: In my case, you told me to look at “his exit interview”. Which exit interview is that? Is this Todd’s exit interview, or Eberle’s? There’s a lot of interviews players conduct throughout the season and they are typically in short, or lengthy videos.

    Do you really expect people to comb through all of the videos your argument COULD apply to and expect them to watch them all to find the point you are apparently pulling out of nowhere?

    “Google it yourself” only really applies when information you are asking people to Google is easily found and is readily available.

    Like “Why are you asking me what the capital of Alberta is? Google it yourself” makes sense

    But, “google a exit interview, which exit interview I won’t tell you, so watch them all to be sure you come across the point I’m making” is not feasible or realistic and is well, just lazy.It also makes it seem like you’re intentionally making the information difficult to find because you don’t want your point challenged.

    It’s not lazy because I’m not inviting your burden of proof response because I’m in on an internet discussion page, not a court case. If your answer is “i have to see the video itself,” I’m fine with that, don’t believe me. I think I’ve provided enough credible information over time but if that’s not good enough for you, fair enough, we can disagree and part ways.

    My point on the internet is human beings ability to consume and remember information of interest in context far exceeds the ability of the internet to PROPERLY archive, keyword tag and curate that content for seamless data recall at a later date. Everyone has found challenges going back and finding something on the internet at a later date. Content gets archived or deleted or most usually, is not comprehensively keyword tagged to enable location based on the full information contained therein. So, this idea that A) information should be always be immediately and elegantly accessible at my fingertips & B) it’s my job to go find and said information anytime someone asks? I’ll pass. And if that seems unfair to you, you can ignore my posts. I won’t take offense.

  91. who says:

    Melman:
    i realize it’s a tall order on the road, but it would be worth it to take a look at:

    Lucic- McD – JP
    Poo- Nuge- Ebs
    Maroon-Drai-Kassian
    Lander-Testy-Pitlick

    JP has been quite responsible defensively and can scoot.Eberle has + history with Nuge, and that 3rd line is beef x 3

    I don’t mind those lines but if Drake comes back healthy and plays as well as he did in pre season I think Maroon could be the guy on the bubble. If JP continues to improve and starts to look like a legit offensive threat I think this team is one more offensive winger away from having three legit scoring lines and Drake may be that missing piece.
    That means someone gets pushed aside and right now Maroon is that guy for me. He is a big body and he has played some good games but I think his lack of foot speed makes him too much of a one dimensional player in a line up that seems to be missing some quickness at times.

  92. Pouzar says:

    Larsson, Now Eberle…..Can’t wait for tomorrow!

  93. Hope is a good thing says:

    For as much time as we micro-analyze the play of Eberle, Russel, JP, and the not so PP, I hope we give at least equal time to LT’s point regarding what’s happening in Saskatchewan, and probably very close to all of us.

    I liked that the Oilers are having to to struggle against physical, clutch and grab, and not so subtle interference based hockey. It is an early introduction to the playoffs; just dial up the intensity a few notches. Now let’s work on the response to it!

  94. pocession charge says:

    Lucinius:
    Eberle being weak defensively is, well, blatantly obvious if you simply watch the games. He is, more often than not, in the wrong position or out of position due to cheating for offense.

    I thought the best players were the best defensive players? Could have sworn I read that on here somewhere……

  95. pocession charge says:

    Side: In my case, you told me to look at “his exit interview”. Which exit interview is that? Is this Todd’s exit interview, or Eberle’s? There’s a lot of interviews players conduct throughout the season and they are typically in short, or lengthy videos.

    Do you really expect people to comb through all of the videos your argument COULD apply to and expect them to watch them all to find the point you are apparently pulling out of nowhere?

    “Google it yourself” only really applies when information you are asking people to Google is easily found and is readily available.

    Like “Why are you asking me what the capital of Alberta is? Google it yourself” makes sense

    But, “google a exit interview, which exit interview I won’t tell you, so watch them all to be sure you come across the point I’m making” is not feasible or realistic and is well, just lazy.It also makes it seem like you’re intentionally making the information difficult to find because you don’t want your point challenged.

    I think BoP was trolling because there is no exit interview available to the public. An ‘exit interview’ is conducted privately between the player, coach, and GM. Those are not posted online. The public does not know what was said during the exit interview. If he was referring to the locker room clear-out interviews, all players say that they need to work on all aspects of their game in the off season. Pretty standard stuff.

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

    Pouzar,

    Well this one is obvious, it’s clearly gonna be Talbot

  97. pocession charge says:

    Bruce McCurdy: How does doing well impede his development?

    If he does too well this year, then next year when the sophomore jinx hits, his confidence will be shot and that will impede his development?

  98. JimmyV1965 says:

    Bag of Pucks: I would think a fanbase that has gone 108 years without a championship is entitled to a little emotional dysfunction, no? They get no props for supporting the team throughout?

    I’ve read this comment countless times and thought I should respond. Ebs doesn’t work on thr RNH line because this is now the shut down line, something he is not suited for.

  99. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lucinius: That said, I don’t blame him (completely). I blame the Oilers and the various coaching staffs they’ve had since he came into the league. He’s never really had to pay for lack of effort. He has, on many an occasion, played a poor game by any accounting.. and doesn’t see a single second lost to benching.

    Renney, Krueger, Eakins, Nelson, and now MacLellan. Five different coaching staffs, and not one of them has benched Eberle for lack of effort (according to your claim – but I ain’t doing the research, the burden of proof is on bag of pucks!), but you continue to claim there is a lack of effort. I think perspective is playing a large role here.

    Or, we can just fall back on the old reliable puppet master theme to explain why none of the coaches/GMs fix the problems we see that have persisted for so long. Is MacT still the puppet master, or are we back to Lowe, or someone new? I think Tambellini might still be getting a paycheck, maybe it’s him. I’ll bet Eberle had Tambellini put in his contract that he could not be benched for lack of effort. (I bet Taylor Hall had Tambellini put in his contract that if the Oilers were still basement dwellers by the end of the 2015-16 season that he was to be traded to an Eastern Conference team. Should have been more specific, Taylor.)

  100. stephen sheps says:

    Pouzar:
    Larsson, Now Eberle…..Can’t wait for tomorrow!

    ??

    Are you talking about misguided targets of our scorn/abuse or is something actually wrong with these players?

    In other news, I posted a little introductory post over at the oilers rig, but since most of you already know me and what my deal is, there’s very little point in reading it. I will still leave the spam link here though, just in case you want to waste a few minutes of your day: http://www.theoilersrig.com/2016/11/meet-new-guy/

  101. stephen sheps says:

    CrazyCoach:
    Hey LT,

    Thanks for the nice words on Ethan Bear.As you know, I’m a big fan of his mainly because, he, like myself, is bucking all the stats and seem to be thriving in a world where there is not much hope according to the stats.

    I believe kind words from folks like yourself, are one of many steps that lead to reconciliation and healing.

    I thank you from the bottom of my heart for that.

    Cheers
    Ben (crazycoach)

    Quoted for both truth and for the beauty and hope that both Ben and LT are providing to this corner of the internet today.

  102. Side says:

    Bag of Pucks: It’s not lazy because I’m not inviting your burden of proof response because I’m in on an internet discussion page, not a court case. If your answer is “i have to see the video itself,” I’m fine with that, don’t believe me. I think I’ve provided enough credible information over time but if that’s not good enough for you, fair enough, we can disagree and part ways.

    My point on the internet is human beings ability to consume and remember information of interest in context far exceeds the ability of the internet to PROPERLY archive, keyword tag and curate that content for seamless data recall at a later date. Everyone has found challenges going back and finding something on the internet at a later date. Content gets archived or deleted or most usually, is not comprehensively keyword tagged to enable location based on the full information contained therein. So, this idea that A) information should be always be immediately and elegantly accessible at my fingertips & B) it’s my job to go find and said information anytime someone asks? I’ll pass. And if that seems unfair to you, you can ignore my posts. I won’t take offense.

    It’s not about this being a court case, it’s about encouraging or maintaining a meaningful discussion and it gives validity to what you’re saying. Someone could just as easily say “You’re wrong, I once heard Todd say there was nothing wrong with Eberle’s conditioning or effort level. Don’t believe me? Google it.”

    Regarding human memory. Well, it’s terrible and completely unreliable.. Which is also why I was curious if you had a video handy. You could be misinterpreting or well, imagining what was said and this could be in part to what’s driving your feelings about Eberle. I guess we won’t know.

  103. GMB3 says:

    Y’all are a grumpy bunch today. I think if you ignore Eberle’s defensive shortcomings based on the argument consisting of “where are the stats” you probably are a fanboy or don’t watch enough. To echo an earlier sentiment I also saw Eberle working harder *by my eye ;)* than I have last 2 games, and I didn’t get to watch the Van game. Maybe it is sickness.

  104. delooper says:

    Bruce McCurdy: How does doing well impede his development?

    It’s better for him to be crushing it in the AHL than treading water in the NHL. His timing especially on passing could use some work, from what I’ve seen.

    My concern is his development stalls, especially his offensive game. You flub enough passes as soon-enough people will be looking you off, especially if you’re on a first or second line.

  105. Pouzar says:

    stephen sheps: Are you talking about misguided targets of our scorn/abuse or is something actually wrong with these players?

    The former.

  106. Pouzar says:

    delooper: It’s better for him to be crushing it in the AHL than treading water in the NHL. His timing especially on passing could use some work, from what I’ve seen.

    My concern is his development stalls, especially his offensive game.You flub enough passes as soon-enough people will be looking you off, especially if you’re on a first or second line.

    18 yr old rookies can hit that wall pretty hard especially coming off a 50 game season the previous year.

  107. JimmyV1965 says:

    Bag of Pucks: I’m not saying all Eberle supporters are fanboys. I’m saying there is a segment of his supporters, as there is for Hall, Yakupov, and pretty much every fan favourite player, that jumps on small sample size highlights to crow about their guy and disparage detractors. By its very definition, that is fanboy behavior, and imo is deserving of derision. This is a community that favours an overall body of work.

    Incidentally, this is why I find one of the supporting arguments for Eberle so bizarre, which is the argument that he does the hardest thing well (i.e. score goals) so the rest of his body of work (i.e. in the other 2/3rds of the rink) should therefore be discounted or at the very least marginalized in importance.

    Scoring goals in the NHL is not the hardest thing to do. Scoring goals whilst still being a responsible two way player is. In shortchanging his defensive game, Eberle essentially makes a choice for a style of game that better rewards individual accomplishment over team accomplishment. It’s never been a skill issue with Eberle. It’s always been about effort and personally, that is why I’m not a supporter. The one things I think it’s fair to expect, particularly amongst your highest paid players, is maximum effort.

    At this level, where the ‘effort’ really begins is with the training. The better shape a player is in, the better they can maintain their effort through a period, game, season, etc. From all accounts, Eberle has never been a huge workout guy. So, what you get, is a player that picks his spots based on what he has in the tank.

    So is it your contention then when he lost the puck at the offensive blueline and lost the battle to win it back defensively, and then had to be bailed out by Russel, that he just gave up and didn’t give a crap? If that’s the case, you lack a certain objectivity.

  108. godot10 says:

    // I imagine we see that in a practice soon, with Anton Lander (who is now 9gp, 1-2-3) moving to the middle on a makeshift 3line.
    Lucic—McDavid—Eberle
    Pouliot—Nuge—Draisaitl
    Maroon—Lander—Puljujarvi
    Pitlick—Letestu—Kassian//

    A good proposal, though I’d like to swap the wingers on the 2nd line with the wingers on the first line.

    dustrock:
    I wonder if the Nurse/Russell pairing actually makes more sense.

    Russell, like Fayne, is an oddball 3rd pairing quality defensemen. The wrong type of defensemen to play with Nurse, as evidenced by the goal against that occurred when Russell was paired with Nurse last night. I want Nurse playing with a conventional type of defensemen…to facilitate his development. Davidson and Gryba and Benning fit the description of a conventional type of defensemen.

    Sekera is really the only D with the range of skills to play with square pegs like Russell and Fayne and have them be effective. Russell was better than nothing (the OIlers needed to add two D this summer), and fits McLellan’s system better than Fayne, so I agreedwith/liked the last minute signing. I don’t want him long term though. Hopefully Benning is ready by the deadline and Davidson and Fayne are healthy, so Russell can be trade at the deadline to replace the 2nd round draft pick.

    leadfarmer:
    I am not liking TMacs inability to adjust to the game properly.Once he saw that Babcock was going to grind Mcdavids line he needs to take his only RW that can put more than 40 pts off that line.Eberle is not going to protect McDavid and he is quite terrible at the grinding game and not good at breaking the trap.He needs to move the offense to the other lines.Bring Kassian and Marroon up to play with McDavid to beat Kadri into a pulp for two periods creating room in the 3rd for McDavid.In the meantime overload your offense to the second and third line with Lucic Drai and JP and Pou nuge Ebs.Toronto doesn’t have the depth to handle 3 lines.Instead TMac just fell into Babcock game plan where he took out two of our best offensive weapons with one line.

    Babcock has been outcoaching McLellan for the last decade. Don’t expect it to change. IMHO, McLellan bought into the McDavid/Matthews hype, and Babcock went all Belichek on him, with McLellan left looking befuddled like Rex Ryan usually does. McLellan can’t make an in-game adjustment to save his life. With no power play, the playoffs are unlikely. The power play is coaching. No wins above replacement with McLellan. The Mediocre Coach epitomized.

  109. stephen sheps says:

    Pouzar: The former.

    That’s a relief, I think… Maybe it’s the post birthday hangover lingering a little but I just don’t know anymore. It’s not that I want this place to turn into an echo chamber and I certainly know there are lots of moments from the Oilers recent games to be critical about, but some of the hyperbole, nastiness and the inability to respectfully disagree is bringing me down. There have been days where it’s beyond the expected level of internet snark, and for some reason it seems as if those days are becoming more frequent. I get that it’s not time to start planning the parade, but it’s not the time to be on the attack either.

  110. matt says:

    LOWETIDE: Until such time as the 3C walks through the door, or Drake Caggiula can play, I think the Oilers—especially on the road—are going to need to ice two legit offensive lines. Too little talent for three scoring lines, unicorns in the distance.

    PA Parenteau says hello. That sh….tuff is on Chiarelli.

  111. theres oil in virginia says:

    This is a great interview:

    http://www.espn.com/espnradio/play?id=17955328

    It’s The Russillo and Kannell Show interview of Joe Banner. It’s an NFL focussed interview, (after all, when ESPN gave up on hockey…lol), and it starts with a discussion of the Minnesota Vikings, which perhaps folks here won’t be interested in, but the latter half of the interview is about analytics in football, or rather I should say, the lack of analytics in football. Worth a listen.

  112. Melvis says:

    Fanboy, meh….Frankly, I’m offended by the use of the word “garbage”. Have a little respect. It isn’t garbage anymore. It’s compost. I happen to like compost. It makes for better garden vegetables.

    Another thing. Road food. Four or five back to backs – it isn’t road food anymore. We used to call it “road balls.” Believe me, it’s a thing. Twenty hour days and road balls. I once nodded off on a john in the old Pittsburg barn waiting for some reargard action prior to a stage call. Woke up not knowing where I was. Now that’s a freaking nightmare.

  113. Jethro Tull says:

    Bag of Pucks: Source?

    During the off season when we last had this dog’s breakfast of a conversation. *mumble something about hunting down stats mumble*

  114. stevezie says:

    stephen sheps: Maybe it’s the post birthday hangover lingering

    We get it! It’s your birthday! We’re all reaaaaaallly impressed!

    Hopefully that cheers you up

  115. Lowetide says:

    Blues call up Brad Hunt. And so it begins.

  116. vinotintazo says:

    Lowetide:
    Blues call up Brad Hunt. And so it begins.

    So Eakins what not that crazy after all.

  117. fuzzy muppet says:

    JP looked more than ready last night. His biggest issue is that he tends to be a perimeter player. He has got to learn to drive to the net more.

    I had no problem with their game last night. It was two defensive miscues that led to easy GA. That and they tend to overpass on their odd man breaks.

    I’d like to see 27-29-44 and have a line that can cycle. It’s time to see what someone else can do with 97.

  118. stephen sheps says:

    stevezie,

    that helped. you always help. you’re a good man, Stevezie

  119. bendelson says:

    stephen sheps: you’re a good man, Stevezie

    This ^
    x100
    Quoted for truth.
    +1
    Word.

    Too much?
    Edit: Never enough.

  120. OilClog says:

    Eberle and Nuge know how to play together against the toughs, Nuge is being severely hampered on the scoresheet due to his wings.

    Nuge is a pretty awesome defensively, yet he was drafted 1st overall to score. It’s maddening he’s not being used to his best ability. He’s a wizard with the puck and guys that know how to get themselves open.

    The powerplay Eberle being left out on an island while Mcdavid and Drai play give and go is useless. Make a unit with Nuge and Ebs and finally let the horses out.

  121. hankster says:

    I wonder how many Eberle fan…fanclub members appreciate what it’s like to play organized full contact hockey. I’m fan of this blog for many reasons, however, every time I read how both Hall and Eberle can do no wrong, that is real garbage !

    There’s are many other aspects to the physical game that often do not get discussed here. So thank you Bag of Pucks for mentioning those intangibles.
    Also posting 1000 times does not mean you are “accredited” and suddenly gives you more credibility. finger wag…

    Oilers played a “nice” game with the leafs. Did not appear engaged just like the Sens game a few days ago. Agree the coach needs mid game adjustments by throwing Kassian in Mcdavid’s line to rough up McDavid’s checkers in order to create more space going forward.

  122. stevezie says:

    bendelson,

    I happen to know there are no stats to back this up. Google it and prove me wrong if you dont believe me.

    CrazyCoach,

    And thank you.

  123. classict says:

    hankster,

    I don’t think anyone is saying Hall or Eberle can do no wrong but if a person thinks the problem with this team is a perennial 60pt player (excepting last year) then I think that person is misguided.

    Those two have put up first line numbers and have been a positive contribution while playing the toughest comp for years now. That’s basically the definition of delivering results

  124. theres oil in virginia says:

    stephen sheps: That’s a relief, I think… Maybe it’s the post birthday hangover lingering a little but I just don’t know anymore. It’s not that I want this place to turn into an echo chamber and I certainly know there are lots of moments from the Oilers recent games to be critical about, but some of the hyperbole, nastiness and the inability to respectfully disagree is bringing me down. There have been days where it’s beyond the expected level of internet snark, and for some reason it seems as if those days are becoming more frequent. I get that it’s not time to start planning the parade, but it’s not the time to be on the attack either.

    C’mon Sheps, you’ve got to see the humor in all this. There are some really funny posts above.

    ***

    For the record, your honor, I’d like to state that I appreciate Bag of Pucks as a poster. I generally read all of his posts, except for occasionally when he’s purposefully shit-disturbing.

  125. frjohnk says:

    hankster: I wonder how many Eberle fan…fanclub members appreciate what it’s like to play organized full contact hockey

    Play hockey???

    Its pretty hard to when there are spreadsheets scattered all over this basement.

    And full contact?

    Do you mean like contacting the puck really hard?

    Or does full contact mean a puck that is not sponge?
    If so, yikes thats too crazy for me. Thats like living on the edge.

    Oh and by the way, its EBERLE.

  126. Lowetide says:

    A quick reminder, Oilers are 7-2-1 after 10. Now, back to regular programming.

  127. Oilspill says:

    The supposed glass and out isn’t bad! it’s the last option when:
    1. There is a strong outnumbered forecheck.
    2. THERE are no lanes to skate it out.
    3. Forwards are not supporting or changing.
    4. Forwards have tight checks.(trap)
    WHAT IS BAD IS A TURNOVER IN YOUR OWN ZONE!
    Don’t call a good last resort play a bad play.

    SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo!:
    Wow so much negativity in the last 18 hours when the team actually bolstered its lead ahead of most western teams, tough crowd on the ol Al Gore.

    Pouzar,

    I’m with you here, noticed a lot of really smart things with Nurse last night, most obvious being the walk across the line on the goal. Not the greatest shot but I like the instinctsand thought he used his body well to fend off the check and get the shot away. Also noticed a lot of calm decisions with the puck in his own end (note I did not say 100% of his decisions were smart). He made a couple rushes and at least a few times read the play correctly and adjusted his moves. Remember he didn’t do these types of things last year, or at least he didn’t do them well. Positive arrows.

    I was also a huge fan of Klefbom’s decision to fire at will. Granted not all of the shots were great but I like that he’s shooting. Lost of folks saying the Oilers net front presence is lacking, I agree and i noticed on a lot of these point shots last night. Hopefully this will shift if the defense keep getting shots through.

    On the I “saw it bad” side, I noticed quite a few “off the glass and out” and stretch pass to nowhere plays by the D last night. Three games in a row now that I’ve noticed a higher proclivity to use those plays, not a good sign. Means the forwards aren’t coming back enough or the D are panicking quicker. Personally I think its a mix of the two but you’re mileage may very.

    leadfarmer,

    Truth, I love how the media hyped the McDavid/Matthews angle and nothing came of it. But I don’t think its as simple as mug McDavid and the team folds.The numbers show 3/4 lines having good to great nights, they didn’t cash mind you and that helps explain the lossbut I don’t think the Oilers folded here (if they did its damn amazing they put up 46 shots).

  128. stephen sheps says:

    theres oil in virginia: C’mon Sheps, you’ve got to see the humor in all this.There are some really funny posts above.

    ***

    For the record, your honor, I’d like to state that I appreciate Bag of Pucks as a poster.I generally read all of his posts, except for occasionally when he’s purposefully shit-disturbing.

    Oh for sure I see some of the humour in it; there were some really funny posts above (bag of pucks’ comments included!) but it was more about the tone that’s crept back in. Some days are better than others and I can tell when not to take things too seriously. On the other hand some days I see people being dicks to each other and I can’t tell when people are being funny vs. cruel. Today trended towards the latter rather than the former. But maybe it’s just me…it’s probably just me.

  129. frjohnk says:

    Lowetide:
    A quick reminder, Oilers are 7-2-1 after 10. Now, back to regular programming.

    The last few games there has been a dryspell for the offense, few players are finding the twine. This happens. And it happens to good teams. If the Oilers are a good team, the offense will bounce back quickly.

    If they go .500 or better in November, this is a team that will compete for a playoff spot.

  130. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide:
    A quick reminder, Oilers are 7-2-1 after 10. Now, back to regular programming.

    Killjoy.

  131. Lucinius says:

    Lowetide: A quick reminder, Oilers are 7-2-1 after 10. Now, back to regular programming.

    Which is weird.

    I think that’s partly why there’s a lot of negativity. We’re all just trying to prep ourselves for the hockey gods noticing this error and a spate of horrific injuries befalling the Oilers.

    Oilers can’t be a good team, or turning north. If they are.. it’s only for a larger fall later.

    Anything else just breaks our brains. It’ll take awhile for the fans to adjust to a new reality.

  132. theres oil in virginia says:

    stephen sheps: Oh for sure I see some of the humour in it;

    No…humor. I said humor.

    If you’ve got the blues, just go with it. There’s plenty out there to help:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yuVvnnqZ-7s

  133. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lucinius,

    We’re all waiting for the inevitable “turn south”.

  134. CrazyCoach says:

    stevezie: CrazyCoach,
    And thank you.

    Thanks to everyone who listens.

    Brings tears to my eyes, because I feel the healing happen.

    Cheers

  135. theres oil in virginia says:

    stephen sheps,

    My apologies for not being any good at taking photos, but Venus and a crescent moon at sunset from Virginia a few minutes ago:

    https://s16.postimg.org/hkqugvbsl/IMG_5000.jpg

  136. bendelson says:

    hankster: Also posting 1000 times does not mean you are “accredited”

    Actually… it does.
    Woodguy delivers a certificate to your door (handmade frame I believe – very nice).
    Then, a few minutes later, Steve Smith comes by and punches you in the nose.

    Word on the street is there is a select group that have been “bonafide” at 5000 posts. Details are sketchy, but I think it involves a kick in the groin from McCurdy.

  137. hankster says:

    classict,
    I think Eberle has been fortunate and talented enough to put up the production numbers. However, it’s ironic that other posters continue their sh…stuff about how all the GM’s, coaches and hockey people around the league are dead wrong about both Hall and Eberle. All of those hockey people were so blind and stupid for leaving the two off team Canada’s roster multiple times. Well, that’s hard to read over and over again. Beginning to reach epic homer levels of Hab and leaf fans.

    frjohnk,

    Sarcasm is good. Earlier, I was going to ask how many have suffered a concussion from hockey and get a bit of hockey fear…but clearly some have suffered multiple and career ending concussions already. how else could we explain the lack of eye sight 🙂
    nah, it’s still the Eberle…6M of whom I’m predicting will not get resigned by the Oilers in Aug 2018

  138. stephen sheps says:

    theres oil in virginia: https://s16.postimg.org/hkqugvbsl/IMG_5000.jpg

    that’s real pretty. lordy I miss the south sometimes.

    was so good to be in Charlotte last weekend. It wasn’t long enough but it was just enough to remind me of what I left behind, not to mention the wonders of north carolina bbq at the tailgate for the football game.

  139. theres oil in virginia says:

    stephen sheps,

    I find that when I’m in the mountains, I miss the flatlands; and when I’m in the flatlands, I miss the mountains.

    There’s a lot of stuff up north I’d like to see before I die…or they blow the world up.

  140. stephen sheps says:

    theres oil in virginia:
    stephen sheps,

    I find that when I’m in the mountains, I miss the flatlands; and when I’m in the flatlands, I miss the mountains.

    There’s a lot of stuff down south I’d like to see before I die…or they blow the world up.

    FIFMyself

  141. Statsman says:

    I have a feeling the Oil will come up with a strong game tomorrow night vs. the Rangers. I just hope NY hasn’t picked up any goalies named Anderson…

  142. CrazyCoach says:

    bendelson: Word on the street is there is a select group that have been “bonafide” at 5000 posts. Details are sketchy, but I think it involves a kick in the groin from McCurdy.

    You don’t want to know what happens when you write for Cult of Hockey!

  143. frjohnk says:

    Statsman:
    I have a feeling the Oil will come up with a strong game tomorrow night vs. the Rangers. I just hope NY hasn’t picked up any goalies named Anderson…

    Yup

  144. Lowetide says:

    CrazyCoach: Thanks to everyone who listens.

    Brings tears to my eyes, because I feel the healing happen.

    Cheers

    Thanks for the kind words and comments above, CC. I didn’t know (and should not matter) your background, but am glad I posted it. Has been bothering me for some time now, I just think it is so important that we make this better.

    When my children were young, I felt it was important for our family to go to the same church. My wife is Catholic, and I became a Catholic. It was an amazing journey, mostly because of a man named Father Claude. He was a ‘White Father’

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/White_Fathers

    He told me ‘once you know, you know’ and it stuck with me. Those children in Saskatchewan, God love them, have been our education.

    And we know.

  145. Ivan says:

    bendelson: Actually… it does.
    Woodguy delivers a certificate to your door (handmade frame I believe – very nice).
    Then, a few minutes later, Steve Smith comes by and punches you in the nose.

    Word on the street is there is a select group that have been “bonafide” at 5000 posts.Details are sketchy, but I think it involves a kick in the groin from McCurdy.

    bendelson: Actually… it does.
    Woodguy delivers a certificate to your door (handmade frame I believe – very nice).
    Then, a few minutes later, Steve Smith comes by and punches you in the nose.

    Word on the street is there is a select group that have been “bonafide” at 5000 posts.Details are sketchy, but I think it involves a kick in the groin from McCurdy.

    You kill me sometimes. i gotta go find a kleenex to wipe off my screen now.

  146. Little-G says:

    Lowetide,

    LT, I’m curious to know your opinion on something. Do you think last night’s game was a case of the Oilers running into a hot goaltender, who controlled rebounds and didn’t give them any second chances? Or were the shots just not high quality enough? (from the outside, etc…) Am I asking the same question twice?

    First time poster. Love your blog, and listening to you on the radio. Keep up the good work!

    -G

  147. Lowetide says:

    Little-G:
    Lowetide,

    LT, I’m curious to know your opinion on something. Do you think last night’s game was a case of the Oilers running into a hot goaltender, who controlled rebounds and didn’t give them any second chances? Or were the shots just not high quality enough? (from the outside, etc…) Am I asking the same question twice?

    First time poster. Love your blog, and listening to you on the radio. Keep up the good work!

    -G

    Last night was a weird game. I think Oscar made an early mistake, McDavid did not play his normal game, his linemates were poor, and the Nuge and Leon lines did very well. I was very happy with the game overall, Edmonton came back in the third and then lost on a weird OT goal. I don’t expect this team to win the Stanley Cup, so their first road loss of the season (in their fourth game) was one I am willing to forgive. The main culprit is their best defensemen. These things happen.

  148. OmJo says:

    Statsman:
    I have a feeling the Oil will come up with a strong game tomorrow night vs. the Rangers. I just hope NY hasn’t picked up any goalies named Anderson…

    Henrik Lundqvists’ wifes’ last name is Andersson. So we might not be out of the woods yet.

  149. Little-G says:

    Lowetide,

    Thanks for the insight. It was a weird game indeed.

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