G26 2016-17: DUCKS AT OILERS

I think we can safely list the Edmonton Oilers future: Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Darnell Nurse, Jesse Puljujarvi, Oscar Klefbom, Adam Larsson, Andrej Sekera, Milan Lucic, Cam Talbot, Matt Benning, Drake Caggiula.  RNH and Jordan Eberle? Probably, but the money is going to be the money before too long. Question: If this team is close, at the deadline, does Peter Chiarelli add useful players?

TABERNAC SATURDAY, 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, goal differential -6
  • Oilers in November 2016: 5-8-2 goal differential -3
  • Oilers in December 2015: 7-6-1, goal differential -9
  • Oilers in December 2016: 1-0-0, goal differential +3
  • Oilers after 25, 2015: 8-15-2, goal differential -16
  • Oilers after 25, 2016: 13-10-2, goal differential +10

This is a strong recovery season over season, +5  in the wins aisle, +10 in points and an outstanding +26 in goal differential. These are the days of miracle and wonder, don’t cry baby don’t cry don’t cry don’t cry. G26 a year ago? Edmonton beat Boston 3-2 in a shootout.

Will it result in a playoff berth? I still can’t see it. Calgary is two points back now, still lots of problems but their goalie is goaling and there are veterans in important spots. They have spiked with the Gaudreau gone and will no doubt receive a boost when he returns. The Oilers have two games in hand, against Anaheim and Minnesota, and could stretch the lead to six. Will they? The playoffs are a long way off, but we get tells every week. Edmonton is 1-1-0 this week, can they stretch it to 3-1-0? Will it be 1-3-0?

TRADE WINDS

  • Sather on making trades: “I’m on the phone every day. It’s part of the business. Everybody wants the kids. Toronto wants a young defensemen, and they’d give me practically anyone I would name, or so they say. But when I name someone, it just seems to break down. I could have (Ian) Turnbull, I guess, but I’m not sure I want him. Buffalo right now, why I could pick up the phone to Scott (Bowman) and have Jim Schoenfeld and Rick Martin. Schoenfeld’s just the kind of defenseman we need, and Martin has scored 50 goals twice, and he’s been an All-Star. But they’re what, 28 or 29? and what Scotty wants in return are (Dave) Hunter and (Paul) Coffey. I could do that, sure. We could move up about four places this year, just with that trade. But in three of four years, they’d kill me. Coffey’s going to be one of the best defensemen in this league. That’s all they want: The kids. I’m going to stick with these kids even if it means finishing last.”

THEY are the fans, and it is true. Edmonton needs a backup goalie who starts more than twice in the first 25 games, and a Pisani and a RHD for the second pairing and power play. Cost? JP? First-round pick? Drake Caggiula? If it were Bogdan Yakimov, that trade would be done.

Will Edmonton buy at the deadline? And I am not talking Jerred Smithson, I am talking real help. Can I see it? Maybe. More than this, I see a Patrick Maroon style add, someone who can help now and down the line. The only barrier? Expansion draft. Still, I don’t think PC is so invested in all of the current protected list that he would not try to upgrade.

ASSETS?

We are midway through the Top 20 prospects and if the Oilers are planning on additions, someone from the group may be heading out. Who? Ziyat Paigin? Bogdan Yakimov? Tyler Pitlick? What about draft picks?

chiarelli draft capture

2017 OILERS PICKS (PROJECTED)

  • First Round, No. 20
  • Second Round, No. 51 (belongs to Boston)
  • Third Round, No. 82
  • Third Round, No. 87 (arrives in Yakupov deal)
  • Fourth Round, No. 113
  • Fifth Round, No. 131 (arrives in Larsen deal)
  • Fifth Round, No. 144
  • Sixth Round, No. 175
  • Seventh Round, No. 206

I spoke to Guy Flaming yesterday, and Europe, WHL and some other spots are strong but the OHL (the OHL is prospect mecca these years) does not have the usual brilliance. Would PC trade No. 20? I don’t think he will—in fact, one suspects adding a second-round pick will be of interest to the organization.

27 times 3

On Sunday night, after the Wild game, Edmonton will have completed 27 games, or roughly 33 percent of the schedule. If Edmonton wins both weekend games, they will be in the range of the playoffs (96 points) if you project it over the final two-thirds of the year. If they lose both? They project 84 points. Last year, Edmonton posted 22 points in 27 games, that would have projected them to 66 points—and they finished with 70 on the year. The range (84 to 96) is potentially encouraging, but Edmonton badly needs to find consistency, and balance is not an organizational priority at this time. McDavid and Talbot have them here, the Nuge line needs to contribute here and right soon!

NICK ELLIS!

ellis-3

Photo by Mark Williams, all rights reserved

Nick Ellis is having a great run in Bakersfield, and putting pressure on Laurent Brossoit (who pitched a shutout last night) in terms of counting numbers and save percentage:

  • AHL No. 4 SP: Nick Ellis, .930
  • AHL No. 5 SP: Laurent Brossoit .927

The Condors have had extended periods where they couldn’t put the puck in the ocean, but the goaltending has been quality so far. I will speak to Catherine Silverman (voodoo explainer!) at 2:20 today about Ellis, and his remarkable progress from seldom used college backup to star starter to excellent AHL backup—and where he goes from here. Interview at 2:20 today, Edmonton time, on Saturday Sports Extra.

OILERS SCORERS IN NHL TOP 60 OVERALL

  • No. 1 Connor McDavid 25gp, 11-23-34
  • No. 21 Leon Draisaitl 25gp, 9-11-20
  • No. 29 Milan Lucic 25gp, 7-12-19
  • No. 52 Jordan Eberle 25gp, 7-10-17

You can go decades without four men in the top 60 scorers, so enjoy this while you can. Completely coincidental that 97s wingers have made it into this group, I am sure. The issue for Edmonton is that their next scorers have 11 points (Nuge, Maroon) and that is not a strong number. Tighten up, in the words of the great philosopher Archie Bell.

CHECKING IN ON JUSTIN SCHULTZ

Dave Molinari has an article up for the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette about Justin Schultz and his defensive progress. He and Ian Cole are playing third pair for the Penguins, and Schultz has a 4.4 Corsi Rel—excellent!—early in the year. Good for him, glad it is going well. He doesn’t get much power-play time though (Letang) and hopefully that increases. I mean, why bother having JS if you aren’t using him there?

TABERNAC SATURDAY

It all revolved around the HNIC game. You see, we didn’t have a game every night, in fact many times HNIC was the game of the week. My brother and I would play outside until Stampede Wrestling, beat the hell out of each other (this is me lying, he beat the hell out of me) during the Bugs Bunny Show, and then HNIC.

I remember cards and beer and cigarettes (and a cigar, my Grandpa smoked a cigar) and I would watch no matter who was playing. I was the only one in the entire family who was thrilled with an expansion team (Minnesota North Stars!), the men preferred Toronto-Montreal. Which made little sense to me, because if Montreal won they were all miserable, but I have figured it out since then.

The Oilers on Saturday night in recent seasons have been beaten soundly by my recollection, but that too shall pass. This past week, people went nuts again because the Oilers could not find a way to beat the Arizona Coyotes and their blasted defensive shell.

It will come, ladies and men. Small victories are big steps. Let’s start with a HNIC win, so at least one old man can stop his terrible habit of yelling at the TV and scaring the beJesus out of the dog. Amen.

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467 Responses to "G26 2016-17: DUCKS AT OILERS"

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  1. The Trade Guy says:

    Beating the Ducks (who I hate) is super cool.

  2. Pescador says:

    Sekera is an overtime wizard

  3. spoiler says:

    Dr. Drai ends as hard fought an OT as you will ever see.

  4. jzed says:

    Refs must be hanging their heads, players decided the game

  5. JDï™ says:

    Gave the fuckinducks a point though.

  6. Yak Efron says:

    An Oiler win without a McDavid point is like pie without ice cream.

    *wanders to the kitchen*

  7. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    Never been happier to be wrong

  8. Lowetide says:

    Exciting game.

  9. Wolfie says:

    This may be Johnny Come Lately but noticing Ebs in a good way at both ends of the ice. Hoping Draisaitl becomes our Malkin to McDavid’s Crosby!

  10. CrazyCoach says:

    jzed: That’s got to be a coaching thing,

    It’s always a coaching thing. You have to control your bench

  11. russ99 says:

    Talbot is the 1st, 2nd and 3rd star.

    A lesser goalie and we’re blown out.

  12. Rebilled says:

    HAHAHAHA

    LEON THE KILLER!

  13. Professor Q says:

    Very nice. Awesome takeaway by Larsson, nice dish by Sekera, beautiful goal by Dr. Drai.

  14. dangilitis says:

    Fuck ya!! Eberle is the best 4 on 4 player on the team. Only regret should be handing them the bettman point, but winning the first of a tough back to back is huge. Man this is going to be a tough week with 5 games in 7 nights and 2 against Dubie and the Wild

  15. Wolfie says:

    I did not entirely contain my joy on that goal. Hopefully the kids are still asleep!

  16. CrazyCoach says:

    That was an awesome game.

    I think the Punjabi feed is my good luck charm.

    Dr Drai!

  17. spoiler says:

    Don’t know how Talbot avoided a game star.

  18. Professor Q says:

    Wolfie:
    This may be Johnny Come Lately but noticing Ebs in a good way at both ends of the ice.Hoping Draisaitl becomes our Malkin to McDavid’s Crosby!

    He’s much better on his wing, though.

  19. Diablo says:

    Great win! Eberle with a strong game. Nuge with a goal. Big penalty kill to start the OT period, then controlled the play the rest of the way. Well done. This is why I get pissy when people try to lower expectations with this team. Only consistency is holding this team back.

  20. frjohnk says:

    Gotta love beating a Pacific rival.
    Huge win.

    Draisaitl gonna be a river pusher.

  21. dangilitis says:

    russ99:
    Talbot is the 1st, 2nd and 3rd star.

    A lesser goalie and we’re blown out.

    I would say Gibson was 2nd star and Eberle 3rd – agree to disagree? We are always harder on our own D play and the 3rd was a mess but oilers had their chances

  22. spoiler says:

    That one almost felt like a playoff game.

  23. Wolfie says:

    The Oilers didn’t give Anaheim a point. The NHL did with the way that 3rd period was officiated.

  24. frjohnk says:

    McDavid no points.

    And we can still win!

    Woot!

  25. spoiler says:

    dangilitis,

    I would’ve went with either that or Fowler replacing Gibson.

  26. Pescador says:

    I wonder if there will be 5,000 Anahiem fans posting tonight about how bad Fowler & Vatanen fucked up that overtime d coverage.
    As Oiler fans we are some sick individuals.
    Superb victory!!
    P.S.
    Fuck off Dubnyk

  27. Pescador says:

    spoiler:
    Don’t know how Talbot avoided a game star.

    We know what time it is

  28. Professor Q says:

    That Larsson takeaway on the Kesler breakaway was smooth and beautiful.

  29. Bling says:

    Always nice to see Ebs and Nuge having great games like that. LT, those are core players!!!

    Eberle is so damn slippery out there, must be a very frustrating guy to defend.

  30. Bling says:

    Professor Q,

    Larsson does so many smart things out there. Very strong game from him.

  31. frjohnk says:

    Pescador:
    I wonder if there will be 5,000 Anahiem fans posting tonight about how bad Fowler & Vatanen fucked up that overtime d coverage.
    As Oiler fans we are some sick individuals.
    Superb victory!!
    P.S.
    Fuck off Dubnyk

    Fowler is the best Ducks Dman hands down.

  32. Rebilled says:

    Great game by Maroon as well.

  33. who says:

    Pretty lucky to win that one. Oilers made a lot of bad decisions with the puck and when they did make a good one a lot of times they missed on the pass and turned it over anyways. Can’t stand to watch giveaways when there is little or no pressure. Starting to think the ice is playing a role in this. Seem to turn it over more at home than on the road.
    Also still not liking Drai on the wing. I guess they are going to leave him there for now but they are going to have find a third line center who can play in his own end. That Cags line was not good in the dzone again. They are fine when they get it over the blue line.

  34. Bank Shot says:

    Good to get the win. First game this season I was really frustrated with the reffing. They didn’t call more than a few obvious penalties.

    It was hard to see if Sekera’s stick was purposely knocked out of his hand on the Anaheim second goal. It wasn’t a good angle. Would have been nice if they replayed that part of the goal.

    What was the deal with them continuing to allow Anaheim last change?

    OIlers still need to tighten up in the defensive end. McDavid needs to do something out there. He shouldn’t slack off like that by not scoring……:P

    Poor Lander. Scored a hattrick in the AHL tonight. Too good for that league, just can’t get traction in the NHL.

  35. JDï™ says:

    Bank Shot: First game this season I was really frustrated with the reffing

    Really?

  36. --hudson-- says:

    Clutch PK in OT and lovely defending by Larson on Kesler as PQ mentioned.

    The Oilers passing was not good tonight. The outlets from the dzone were off and they had trouble turning possession into quality shots from the danger area 5×5. Once they figure that out against a team like Anaheim they will truly be a force.

  37. N64 says:

    Back up to .500 at home. Best road record in the Conference.

  38. JDï™ says:

    Bank Shot: Poor Lander. Scored a hattrick in the AHL tonight. Too good for that league, just can’t get traction in the NHL.

    Wait till expansion.

  39. Zelepukin says:

    Bank Shot:
    Good to get the win. First game this season I was really frustrated with the reffing. They didn’t call more than a few obvious penalties.

    It was hard to see if Sekera’s stick was purposely knocked out of his hand on the Anaheim second goal. It wasn’t a good angle. Would have been nice if they replayed that part of the goal.

    What was the deal with them continuing to allow Anaheim last change?

    OIlers still need to tighten up in the defensive end. McDavid needs to do something out there. He shouldn’t slack off like that by not scoring……:P

    Poor Lander. Scored a hattrick in the AHL tonight. Too good for that league, just can’t get traction in the NHL.

    Lander is just a perfect AHL 1st liner. I hope he stays there forever and is given the key to Bakersfield when he retires at 35.

    Talbot kept us in that game. Huge saves.

    Nuge line got hemmed in a lot on their own zone, but that’s the Getz-Perry possession game. It’s goin to happen.

    3rd and 4th lines played well I thought. Didn’t give up much and played well down low in their zone.

    Larsson is a beast.

  40. Zelepukin says:

    JDï™: Really?

    Haha

  41. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    Refs not refing again… (That interference non-call on McDavid was a dozy)

    how about sekera’s stick getting lifted (or more of the lines of tossed) right out of his hands only seconds before the rakell goal… yeah, THAT was legal…

    But in the end, the oil prevail against the Ducks! (And refs)

    Great team win!!! (Even though McDavid got no points… 😢)

  42. Lowetide says:

    That Lucic interview by Scott Oake and Louie DeBrusk is one of the best I have ever seen of an athlete. I am a little stunning, by his story and his honesty. The CBC, man.

  43. Zelepukin says:

    We also got 2 PP goals (statistically only 1), when to be honest, our PP was terrible.

    Drai though, a beast on draws. 62.5% against the 2nd best team in the league on FO.

  44. dangilitis says:

    LT, worth mentioning that ES or not, McDavid has about 1 million points, then Eberle, Draisaitl, and Lucic with 19-21 pts, and Eberle and Draisaitl have done a fair bit of that damage away from McDavid. Those 3, to put things in perspective, have produced comparably to Kesler, Perry and Getzlaf, but they don’t have McDavid! We still need more from Nuge and another RW, but this trend can continue.

  45. JDï™ says:

    Lowetide: The CBC, man.

    Missed the interview, but have spent most of my adult life listening to CBC interviews. Revealing, forthright and compelling are the terms that come to mind.

    Not sure how Scott Oake got there, but good on him.

  46. dangilitis says:

    The only 2 teams in the conference with positive goal differentials in the double digits meet tomorrow night. Such a match-up was bound to happen. Oilers vs. Wild, though, who would’ve thunk that?

  47. delooper says:

    Well, most of the credit should go to Lucic for the success of that interview. Few people would be willing to go into so many uncomfortable places. He’s a confident man.

  48. JDï™ says:

    delooper: He’s a confident man.

    He can either beat you down, or pay you off. The definition of confidence.

  49. oldfan80 says:

    delooper:
    Well, most of the credit should go to Lucic for the success of that interview.Few people would be willing to go into so many uncomfortable places.He’s a confident man.

    I agree, Lucic handled that interview very well. He is very well spoken.

  50. Pescador says:

    delooper:
    Well, most of the credit should go to Lucic for the success of that interview.Few people would be willing to go into so many uncomfortable places.He’s a confident man.

    Anyone know where to find it? Thx

  51. Professor Q says:

    According to TSN, Edmonton had a great Road win tonight.

  52. Bank Shot says:

    JDï™: Really?

    I usually don’t get too worked up over reffing.

    Players make turnovers every game. Refs miss calls, or make the wrong ones.

    I just mostly didn’t like the lack of calls when there were many obvious penalties both ways.

    It encourages clog up hockey.

  53. MrEd says:

    Lowetide,

    So curious. Just got home from the rink…
    Has anyone been able to find a link?

  54. Wolfie says:

    The importance of that win can’t be overstated.

  55. Frank the dog says:

    Lowetide:
    That Lucic interview by Scott Oake and Louie DeBrusk is one of the best I have ever seen of an athlete. I am a little stunning, by his story and his honesty. The CBC, man.

    Would you have a URL?

  56. OilClog says:

    Lots more of Debrusk would be nice over Remenda

  57. MrEd says:

    dcsj,

    Cheers.

  58. MrEd says:

    Can’t wait to face DD with this team tomorrow.
    Full Fuhr for Talbot.

  59. spoiler says:

    Bank Shot: It was hard to see if Sekera’s stick was purposely knocked out of his hand on the Anaheim second goal. It wasn’t a good angle. Would have been nice if they replayed that part of the goal.

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/leon-draisaitl-providing-2nd-best-offensive-threat-oilers/

    Spector has it as purposely.

  60. spoiler says:

    Mark Fayne with 18 shifts, 12:44 TOI, no special teams minutes.

    Seemed largely unnoticed tonight.

    Benning with 3 more minutes than KBomb tonight. Almost 6 more minutes at EVs.

  61. Ice Sage says:

    Edmonton, California.
    Leon is our Teutonic Messier.

  62. spoiler says:

    Tonight… this is a game where you have to start the Monster, right?

  63. JDï™ says:

    OilClog:
    Lots more of Debrusk would be nice over Remenda

    The list of acceptable upgrades is long.

  64. JDï™ says:

    https://streamable.com/cy3b

    Playing that much without the puck in OT is not a winning strategy. And then Maroon tries to beat a defender with a low percentage play – again, not what you do in 3 on 3. Very lucky to get the extra point if you ask me.

    Larsson with a great OT.

  65. Diablo says:

    LT, thanks for pointing out the Lucic interview. Milan seems like a very positive guy, glad he’s an Oiler. Didn’t know that he was related to Dan Kesa.

    Scott Oake mentioned it at the top of the interview, something that’s been suspected – other teams had offered Lucic more money in free agency. While Lucic was diplomatic about the comment and didn’t outright confirm it, he also didn’t deny it.

    People need to stop complaining about his contract. Look at that Ladd deal, and Ericsson, look at what Marchand signed for, same age with even longer term … that’s the cost of doing business in free agency. And also its the price of keeping Connor happy – not only is Lucic a Chia guy, but he’s also someone that McDavid wanted too.

  66. Professor Q says:

    JDï™:
    https://streamable.com/cy3b

    Playing that much without the puck in OT is not a winning strategy. And then Maroon tries to beat a defender with a low percentage play – again, not what you do in 3 on 3. Very lucky to get the extra point if you ask me.

    Larsson with a great OT.

    Penalties are a nasty business.

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