DEAR LANDLORD

The first Edmonton Oilers team—1979-80—featured 16 wingers, only one of those men drafted by the NHL team. Stray cats mostly, but that group scored enough and checked enough for the club to make the second season. Blair MacDonald and Brett Callighen were Gretzky’s linemates that season, they were a solid line—MacDonald scored 46 goals, we all thought he was a perfect fit. Dave Hunter and Dave Lumley were the checkers and gritty skilled men, Hunter was solid on the PK and Lumley got some PP time.  Mark Messier and Cam Connor were also tough wingers, the rookie Messier got time in all three disciplines. Connor may have been the most famous of Edmonton’s wingers that season, he was a former Montreal Canadiens forward. Bobby Schmautz was famous, Don Murdoch too, and there was a time that season when both men looked like they might be here a long time. Dave Semenko was on that team, he was a giant then as now. Bill Flett was a personal favorite, but he was too old and slow to stay. Peter Driscoll and Dan Newman spent time with the Oilers that season, Kari Makkonen, Wayne Bianchin, Ron Carter, Alex Tidey did too, and that makes 16.

By 1982-83, just three years later, the only remaining members of the original 16 were Mark Messier, Dave Semenko, Dave Hunter and Dave Lumley. Newcomers Jari Kurri, Glenn Anderson, Pat Hughes, Jaroslav Pouzar, Willy Lindstrom and others had moved in and set up shop.

WHY THE HISTORY LESSON?

Yesterday afternoon, the Oilers recalled Taylor Beck and sent down Anton Slepyshev, the kind of transaction an NHL team makes all the time. Slepyshev hung around for 15 games this season (11 a year ago) before demotion, and we will see about a recall. Beck is on his second callup and we will see how things go.

In the comments section yesterday, there was a lot of angst about Slepyshev getting sent out, the idea being that he didn’t get a chance. I would argue the young Russian forward has received two long auditions in the last two years (26 games is pretty long stretch). His totals this year (15gp, 2-2-4) are somewhat similar to those of Kari Makkonen (9gp, 2-2-4) back in the day. Makkonen only got one chance, Slepyshev has had two now, and I suspect he may get more.

Folks, the expectation of Anton Slepyshev is that he will not emerge as a five-year solution for the Oilers. That is also the expectation for Taylor Beck.

YOU KNOW WHAT YOU KNOW

Even though we could be wrong (things change daily), I think we can probably make a list of PC keepers on the wings and be fairly close to correct. Among current Oilers, I would say Milan Lucic, Patrick Maroon and Jesse Puljujarvi are in the Mark Messier and the three Daves portion of the roster—they are going to be around for a time, or a long time.

Jordan Eberle could be Blair MacDonald—or he could hang around for the good times. Eberle already has the contract MacDonald could not shake loose from Glen Sather, so in a way the pressure point is gone. As long as Eberle delivers 60-point seasons, and no other winger exceeds him, Peter Chiarelli can either trade for a better option or run with No. 14.

Benoit Pouliot, Zack Kassian, Matt Hendricks, these men are in the journeyman (Schmautz, Weir) portion of the roster. They are here to provide veteran leadership until a replacement arrives. Candidates to replace them currently include Drake Caggiula and Tyler Pitlick, and more are on the way. Benoit Pouliot is kind of in the Stan Weir slot currently, valued for what he brings but also unlikely to be here when the winning should begin. I am no longer certain all of the big three Cs are part of the modern Mark Messier and the three Daves, by the way.

PROJECTED SCORING TOTALS, 2016-17

  • Milan Lucic (82, 21-36-57); Connor McDavid (82, 31-69-100); Leon Draisaitl (82, 33-33-66).
  • Benoit Pouliot (78, 14-6-20); RNH (82, 13-26-39); Jordan Eberle (82, 21-38-59).
  • Patrick Maroon (82, 21-15-36); Mark Letestu (79, 16-19-35); Tyler Pitlick (79, 19-8-27)
  • Zack Kassian (79, 5-14-19); Drake Caggiula (64, 5-18-23); Jesse Puljujarvi (73, 3-22-25).
  • Source: The Hockey News.

Edmonton could have five 20-goal men this year, and a couple who hit 30. The core group, as I see it, are the 1line above, Maroon, Caggiula and Puljujarvi. I believe RNH, Benoit Pouliot and Jordan Eberle are in a little danger now. And some of that has changed (for me) since the beginning of the season—a campaign in which Edmonton has performed well enough to be in a playoff position this morning.

BECKOLOGY

Photo by Mark Williams

Taylor Beck earned a recall, no matter the outcome. He is ripping up the California backtop and my guess is he gets a real shot at a roster spot in the coming weeks. One way to show just how dominant he has been this year is estimated 5×5 points-per-60 via Prospect-Stats. Here are the regular forwards:

  1. Taylor Beck 3.81
  2. Anton Lander 3.76 (in only six games)
  3. Jujhar Khaira 2.31
  4. Ryan Hamilton 2.30
  5. Mitch Moroz 1.41
  6. Josh Currie 1.33
  7. Scott Allen 1.24
  8. Kyle Platzer 0.90
  9. Joey Benik 0.90
  10. Greg Chase 0.67
  11. Patrick Russell 0.65
  12. Braden Christoffer 0.59
  13. Jere Sallinen 0.31
  14. Source

A few comments here. As hot as Anton Lander has been since getting sent down, Beck has been more productive all year long. In real terms, this recall was overdue. Second, we should not expect impact boxcars, but Beck should be able to contribute if the club puts him in a good spot in the batting order. As a righty shooter, power-play time may be in the offing, and that could benefit player and team.

Jujhar Khaira is posting some good numbers too, suspect we see him here after the deadline. Nice to see Mitch Moroz with a pulse this year offensively, hopefully he can push for more playing time as the season rolls.

JESSE

  • Number 11—Mark Messier. He is so young in many ways—only eight days older than Wayne Gretzky—and so old in others. He can be the best player on the ice, or the worst, and sometimes he is both in the same shift. Peter Gzowski, The Game of our Lives.

I post this not as an attempt to compare the two players, but rather as a reminder (Gzowski’s book remains a treasure) of youth and its incredible power and galling abundance of errors. A lot of people are saying (I suspect that phrase is the new at the end of the day) Puljujarvi needs to be sent away right damned now, in order to get some playing time. I agree he has to play, but suspect it is January. By the way, JP plays as a veteran in many situations (defensively, he seems to be a savant) and I do think the Oilers have a gem. If he plays 20 games in the AHL with talented linemates, suspect the boxcars will be impressive. I see no hurry to do so, January will be fine, then bring him up at the deadline.

SHOOT!

If we can agree there was one opening on RW this fall (behind Eberle, Puljujarvi, Kassian and sometimes Leon), then the demotion of Anton Slepyshev signals that Tyler Pitlick won the war. If there is one thing the young Russian winger might want to add to his arsenal, it is shooting more. Here are the Oilers leaders (forwards) in 5×5 shots per 60:

  1. Tyler Pitlick 10.65
  2. RNH 9.33
  3. Zack Kassian 8.63
  4. Jordan Eberle 8.10
  5. Jesse Puljujarvi 8.02
  6. Anton Slepyshev 8.00
  7. Connor McDavid 7.72
  8. Patrick Maroon 7.38
  9. Milan Lucic 7.11
  10. Leon Draisaitl 6.04
  11. Benoit Pouliot 5.04
  12. Mark Letestu 5.02
  13. Drake Caggiula 3.41
  14. Anton Lander 3.02

I think Connor McDavid will score a bunch of goals the moment he gets a little more selfish in the danger zones, expect that will come soon (he is still a young player, but wicked smart). Beck shoots three times a game in the AHL, I expect he will post a solid number on this list.

CAM TALBOT

If the Oilers are going to make the playoffs, McDavid winning the Art Ross and Cam Talbot stopping pucks at a rapid clip are vital. We know McDavid is No. 1 in scoring, how is Talbot doing in net?

  • NHL average save percentage: .914
  • Talbot save percentage .916 (tied for No. 14 among starters)
  • Even-strength save percentage: .919 (tied for No. 18 among starters)
  • Power-play save percentage: .901 (No. 8 among starters)

The most important number (imo) is his PP save percentage and it has been strong all season. Little doubt in my mind that he has played too much, do you agree? Talbot has played well for much of the season, I would still rank him as the second most valuable player on the team this season. My choice for No. 3 on the list? Andrej Sekera.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10, TSN1260, a freezing Lowdown. Scheduled to appear:

  • Steve Lansky, BigMouthSports. Gretzky on the Simpsons, WJs, McDavid v Crosby for scoring championship.
  • Guy Flaming, The Pipeline Show. Guy and Taylor Medak called a Canada/Russia game in Bonnyville with about five minutes notice. The terror I would feel would be overwhelming. How did Guy react?
  • Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. Point-Counter Point focuses on the NFL (Eagles-Ravens) and how best to develop Jesse Puljujarvi.
  • Paul Almeida, SSE. Paul is overwhelming twitter with polls! We will chat, plus discuss the Saturday Oilers game.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Friday!

 

 

 

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116 Responses to "DEAR LANDLORD"

  1. kinger_OIL says:

    – Great post LT!. You comment: “I believe RNH, Benoit Pouliot and Jordan Eberle are in a little danger now”, I believe there are two worthwhile observations:

    1) It’s a testament to how far this organization has come in the last 2 seasons that you could even post such a thing
    2) It’s also a testament to how bad this team was 24 months ago, when we are now comfortable making this observation

    – I actually think Eberle is in the range is what is expected. So the danger with him is that he gets traded, because I think this off-season you should get full value for him

    – They can’t keep RNH if this is the new RNH. And they won’t get full-value for him

    – Pou is who he is, and an ideal Vegas-draft pick IMO

    -*One final comment: really liking the comments section these days: there is a good back and forth: people are generally courteous when disagreeing, and good at applauding other posters*

  2. Skeeziks says:

    LT, I cannot disagree with your choice for the three most important Oilers thus far this year (McDavid, Talbot and Sekera). I do think if there was one more player added to the list as number 4 it would be Draisaitl.

    This would be based on his scoring to date which is a major contribution. However, one must also consider how his play has contributed to taking some pressure off of McDavid. If Draisaitl was not producing then other teams could totally focus on McDavid and, despite his incredible talents, there would be a significant impact.
    In some ways, that is what is so frustrating with RNH’s inability to generate offence this year. If he can start to go then further pressure is taken off the wonder child.

  3. Woogie63 says:

    Can’t argue that Beck has earned a chance in the NHL.

    I would argue that JP should have gone down (until All-Star break) and Slepyshev has earned more time in the NHL.

  4. BONE207 says:

    kinger_OIL
    One final comment: really liking the comments section these days: there is a good back and forth: people are generally courteous when disagreeing, and good at applauding other posters*

    I think that it’s a combination of: Too damn cold to fight, Christmas and anticipation of what the Connor show brings after some rest in time for a Saturday night game. Please let’s look outstanding on what should be a winnable game.
    Merry Christmas…Go Oilers….

  5. PhrankLee says:

    Great post, LT.

    I feel like i’d been waiting on that post for 10 years. You are the best at what you do, bar none.

    Thank you.

  6. dustrock says:

    Not only is Beck playing well, he’s actually leading the AHL in scoring. Mos def earned a call-up.

    LT – not sure why they haven’t called up either Brossoit or Ellis for a look at backup. Talbot has played too much, and when they’re at home, he’s got the twins to care for as well.

    The injuries to Nurse and Davidson are too bad, for the team obviously but also because I was hoping we could use one of them as trade bait to land a RW or RHD QB PP.

  7. dustrock says:

    kinger_OIL:

    -*One final comment: really liking the comments section these days: there is a good back and forth: people are generally courteous when disagreeing, and good at applauding other posters*

    Indeed. Maybe we’ve all calmed down now, we understand they truly are a mediocre team, which is an improvement, and no need to get too high or too low.

  8. russ99 says:

    LT:

    I picked up the Kindle version of Game of Our Lives due to your mention a few weeks ago, and I can’t put it down.

    Other than it being out of print for so long, I can’t believe I didn’t read this before.

    They don’t write like that anymore. Highly, highly recommended for any Oilers fan, or hockey fan for that matter.

  9. jm363561 says:

    Excellent post Mr LT, and I agree with Kinger’s comments about the quality of the ..errh.. comments.

    RNH is a complete mystery. The hockey universe was drooling over his performance in the whatever meaningless international competition played in September, but back at the ranch just blah. There has been comment on the recent success of Shultz, Gagner, Dubnyk, etc. and you have to wonder if RNH is going to be the next one that got away. His generating offence in the rest of the season seems to be the key to the playoffs.

    Two more power play goals conceded vs Columbus – 19 of 27 (71%) kill rate in December; a 20% or so deterioration from mid November. Missing Anton Lander yet Todd?

  10. russ99 says:

    jm363561:
    Excellent post Mr LT, and I agree with Kinger’s comments about the quality of the ..errh.. comments.

    RNH is a complete mystery. The hockey universe was drooling over his performance in the whatever meaningless international competition played in September, but back at the ranch just blah. There has been comment on the recent success of Shultz, Gagner, Dubnyk, etc. and you have to wonder if RNH is going to be the next one that got away. His generating offence in the rest of the season seems to be the key to the playoffs.

    Two more power play goals conceded vs Columbus – 19 of 27 (71%) kill rate in December; a 20% or so deterioration from mid November. Missing Anton Lander yet Todd?

    It’s a long season and players have ups and downs, so I hope RNH turns things around.

    Before Connor’s ELC runs out, something has to give between RNH and Eberle, and IMO, RNH has a lot more to offer to our future success, so it would be painful to move someone who might turn into another Patrice Bergeron when he adds more strength.

    It would be nice to see a Maroon – Letestu – Kassian line or find another center to take some of the heavy lifting away from Nuge so he can concentrate on offense and defense.

  11. JimmyV1965 says:

    I think the reason guys like Schultz, Dubnyk, Petry, Marincin et al improve once they leave here is we don’t put them in a position to succeed. If we trade RNH the same thing will happen. So how do we put him in a position to succeed? I would argue that he should stop playing against the toughest comp. He might be our best defensive centre right now but that doesn’t make him an elite defensive centre by any stretch. He’s not doing well so why keep doing it? In fact, I would make him a winger and play him with McDavid or Drai. It’s Chia’s job to find a decent defensive centre who can play the toughs. I think Hanzel would be perfect for this, or ideally someone similiar who doesn’t get hurt all the time. Or maybe try Lander in that role.

  12. BONE207 says:

    JimmyV1965:
    I think the reason guys like Schultz, Dubnyk, Petry, Marincin et al improve once they leave here is we don’t put them in a position to succeed.If we trade RNH the same thing will happen. So how do we put him in a position to succeed? I would argue that he should stop playing against the toughest comp. He might be our best defensive centre right now but that doesn’t make him an elite defensive centre by any stretch. He’s not doing well so why keep doing it? In fact, I would make him a winger and play him with McDavid or Drai.It’s Chia’s job to find a decent defensive centre who can play the toughs.I think Hanzel would be perfect for this, or ideally someone similiar who doesn’t get hurt all the time. Or maybe try Landef in that role.

    Hanzel I’ve heard of. This Landef guy intrigues me.

  13. JimmyV1965 says:

    BONE207: Hanzel I’ve heard of. This Landef guy intrigues me.

    LOL I went back and changed it.

  14. BONE207 says:

    JimmyV1965: LOL I went back and changed it.

    Well the 3 of us on here today might as well have fun while listening to the Man!!!

  15. adamjames says:

    Would LOVE to see Hanzal as an Oiler, even just in rental capacity. May be a bit premature to be talking about rentals, but what is a realistic price to pay for Hanzal? His stat line sorta reminds me of Gaustad in Buffalo.. And Nashville overpaid bigtime.

    Is his value higher to Oiler fans who have watched him burn us time and time again?

  16. LMHF#1 says:

    “Jujhar Khaira is posting some good numbers too, suspect we see him here after the deadline”

    LT – why are you still suggesting there will be more spots available after the deadline instead of less? This team will need to add at that time – will it not?

    I think Khaira should already be up frankly, but this coach doesn’t work that way and has, unfortunately, also come to find his Toby Petersen/Liam Reddox. This is a habit in coaches that I have truly learned to loathe.

    Slepyshev getting sent out is a joke. He’s better than multiple players on the roster and has so much more potential. They don’t appear to have a coach on staff that knows how to take advantage. Too bad really. Hopefully he’ll be back soon. I don’t expect he’ll play well in the AHL. More suited to the NHL game. How he didn’t get a chance as the right shot on the powerplay I don’t know…

  17. northof51 says:

    Wasn’t around for the glory days, and really appreciate the comparison LT!

    OT, but I need some sensible characters to guide my uncertainty about things.

    I’m a stats guy (love watching, but am all-too aware of my own recency bias), but can’t figure out the Florida Panthers… They make some sensible moves in swapping Kulikov for Pysyk, and then unload the possession drag that is Gudbrannson. But, they (see Aron Ekblad) are somehow a hot mess this year…

    Are they suffering without those intangible Mark Spectorisms that Gudbranson brings to the rink? Or is Brian Campbell just that good?

  18. adamjames says:

    northof51,

    I wonder how much Ekblad’s concussion/whiplash/upper body injury from the World Cup is still rearing its head. He has a bit of concussion history, no?

  19. B.C.B says:

    adamjames:
    Would LOVE to see Hanzal as an Oiler, even just in rental capacity. May be a bit premature to be talking about rentals, but what is a realistic price to pay for Hanzal? His stat line sorta reminds me of Gaustad in Buffalo.. And Nashville overpaid bigtime.

    Is his value higher to Oiler fans who have watched him burn us time and time again?

    I don’t think Hanzal is an ideal fit for the oilers (rental or not). I think it is because of his handedness: he is left handed.
    The Oilers need a top 9 right handed Centre! 1st- RHN, McDavid, and Draisaitl are all left handed (as well as fill ins Lander, Caggiula, and Khaira); 2nd- The only RHC the oilers have in the NHL or AHL is realistically is Letestu.
    Adding a RNC (with two way ability) would open up a lot of options for TMac. He could use that player as a Rightwinger (maybe on RNH line to help him win faceoffs), or play the gentleman at 3C (allowing Draisaitl to move up to the wing on the top two lines). A RHC would also provide relief in case of injury (they could replace Letestu, or hopefully any of the big three, if tragedy happens).
    The problem is that there are no real RHC on the rental market. The top UFA right handed centres are Samwise Gagner (26gp, 21pts, 44.2% fo), Mike Fisher (25gp, 17pts, 55% fo), and Derek Ryan (16gp, 11pts, 54.8% fo). With the season he and his team are having, I can’t see Gagner being traded. Fisher is old, and has a NMC . . . he is not coming here, imo. I’ll be honest and admit I have never heard of Derek Ryan (from CAR) before, and have never seen him play, so I know nothing about him. I don’t see a rental player that fits the Oilers’ needs at centre . . . does anyone else see one?

  20. Dino says:

    As soon as Eberle and RNH figure out how to be secondary scorers since they’re no longer primary scorers this team will start winning a majority of its games.

    It’s been hinted by the coach a few times, it’s like Mcdavid has this effect on his teammates where they kinda get caught watching him and mesmerized by his skills that they forget about their own games. The “Connor will do it” effect where they have less urgency to contribute because they have a teammate that can singlehandedly win them games most nights.

    We even saw that happen to Hall and Drai when Mcdavid returned from injury. Their scoring dried right up and I thought it was strange. I was expecting to finally have some secondary scoring especially since the opposition’s focus would be taken off of them and placed on McDavid.

    So the sooner RNH and Ebs figure out how to stop being idle passengers on the ship of Connor then this team has a really good chance of making the playoffs.

  21. Woogie63 says:

    I am a little confused on the handling of our Right Wingers

    Our best pure scorer is Eberle who is not playing with either of our best passing centres

    Pitlick is a good third / fourth line right winger playing 1RW

    Kassian has gone quiet like he did in Buffalo and Vancouver.

    Eberle (RNH, Maroon) were to play against the toughest and provide some secondary scoring…. the scoring has not happened

  22. magneto says:

    Woogie63:
    I am a little confused on the handling of our Right Wingers

    Our best pure scorer is Eberle who is not playing with eitherof our best passing centres

    Pitlick is a good third / fourth line right winger playing 1RW

    Kassian has gone quiet like he did in Buffalo and Vancouver.

    Eberle (RNH, Maroon) were to play against the toughest and provide some secondary scoring…. the scoring has not happened

    New lines in practice-
    Lucic-McDavid-Eberle
    Maroon-Draisaitl-Caggiula
    Pouliot-RNH-Pitlick
    Hendricks-Letestu-Kassian

  23. fuzzy muppet says:

    How has Caggiula earned his spot while JP has not?

  24. Professor Q says:

    adamjames:
    northof51,

    I wonder how much Ekblad’s concussion/whiplash/upper body injury from the World Cup is still rearing its head. He has a bit of concussion history, no?

    Hendricks.

  25. linkfromhyrule says:

    magneto: New lines in practice-
    Lucic-McDavid-Eberle
    Maroon-Draisaitl-Caggiula
    Pouliot-RNH-Pitlick
    Hendricks-Letestu-Kassian

    That 4th line is way, way too slow. Thankfully it’s a home game tomorrow…

    I realize they are trying to showcase Hendy but man he has looked slow every game he has played. Connor could be the fastest skater in the league, but the team around him just keeps getting slower…

    Also, LT I would like to thank you for your recommendation of “The Game of Our Lives.” I was perusing the local library when I came across it and remembered you mentioning it on here. The writing is fantastic, and for someone who was not alive for the glory years, it’s a very interesting view into a time that I never would have known otherwise. Certainly was a different time from the way things are now..

    Hopefully these are the Glory Years 2.0, but I think we already traded our Messier… and Chiarelli is no Sather

  26. stush18 says:

    fuzzy muppet:
    How has Caggiula earned his spot while JP has not?

    I think you can see cagguila engaged more in the offensive end. Digging for pucks, shooting, making plays off the cycle.

    JP shoots from top of circles off the rush every time, and isn’t really creating imo

    I would say JP is a lot better defensively, which says a lot for an 18 yr old.

  27. treevojo says:

    linkfromhyrule: That 4th line is way, way too slow. Thankfully it’s a home game tomorrow…

    I realize they are trying to showcase Hendy but man he has looked slow every game he has played. Connor could be the fastest skater in the league, but the team around him just keeps getting slower…

    Also, LT I would like to thank you for your recommendation of “The Game of Our Lives.” I was perusing the local library when I came across it and remembered you mentioning it on here. The writing is fantastic, and for someone who was not alive for the glory years, it’s a very interesting view into a time that I never would have known otherwise. Certainly was a different time from the way things are now..

    Hopefully these are the Glory Years 2.0, but I think we already traded our Messier… and Chiarelli is no Sather

    Nah

    We traded our Anderson.

    Our Messier is German.

  28. stush18 says:

    I don’t understand how people on Twitter are still complaining about the hall trade.

    Whether or not you agreed or not, complaining about what “could have” been is ridiculous.

    Like did all these people have ex girlfriends from the back in the day they wistfully wish they still had? Are you all still bemoaning that perfect car you let get away?

    It’s over. Move on. Push the analytics about THIS team forward. Stop showing up at Taylor halls bedroom window in the middle of night telling him he will always belong to you

  29. Jesse Pull Yer RV says:

    Hey all. I had the good fortune to take in the Royals and Winterhawks here in Victoria on Wednesday. Second leg of a back to back and both teams had a decidedly Oilersesque feel in the 3rd. Seems like a nice, slow day to post my “saw him good” account of lefty D Caleb Jones and what he can bring to the Oilers system.

    First, Mike Johnston (of Pittsburgh Penguins fame) leaned on him heavily in all situations, including the distributor at the point of a strong PP. Not a big shooter in my limited viewing though. Jones caught my attention straight away with a brilliant tape to tape pass in the 2nd minute across 3 lines, springing a Portland forward for a chance. I saw his transition game from the D zone to be his greatest strength, with passing ability, above average wheels, and a strong intuition on when to take what space he’s given and skate it out.

    Couple of great Nurse-iike rushes into the O zone, including on a Portland goal where he drove the net and drew the D to him, then dished the puck to a teammate at the circle who found the trailer for the finish. Similar stuff on display to set up the PP with control on a couple of different occasions.

    Defensively (remember, this is my deeply subjective eyeball view) he seemed passive on the PK, content to let the screen set up and wait to deal with the fallout of a shot on net. This could well be orders from on high, but it burned them for a Royals PPG, and it was a constant. Was generally quite effective defending the rush 5v5, with a long reach and smart gap control complementing his skating.

    The Chiarelli Factor: listed at 6’1 on EliteProspects but noticeably one of the larger players on the ice, lanky, lots of frame to fill out. Was not afraid to mix it up after the whistle in what was a chippy affair.

    Altogether a smart player, seems to have a range of skills. Very effective at WHL level, offence is there. I came away impressed with his game and I look forward to seeing him take a crack at the Leftorium one day soon.

  30. stush18 says:

    Jesse Pull Yer RV,

    Good post! Love hearing these first hand looks!

  31. Georges says:

    Cam Talbot.

    From Nov 1 to now, our record is 8-10-5.

    During that period, Talbot’s sv% in all situations is 90.57. That puts him at 29 of 38 goaltenders who have played at least 10 games in that span. The median sv% in that group is 91.76. That works out to 1 more goal Talbot is giving up every 3 games compared to the median goaltender, which works out to between 7 and 8 extra goals. That’s not MVP play.

    So where is it breaking down? I looked at 3 different time periods for Talbot’s run in Edmonton:

    1.From Dec. 2015 to end of last season where he established himself as our #1,
    2. Oct. of this season,
    3. and Nov. 1 to now.

    Time Period, SA60, sv%, HDSA60, HDsv%, GA60, HDGA60

    1, 31.33, 92.46, 7.40, 82.41, 2.36, 1.30

    2, 31.77, 93.57, 8.28, 82.19, 2.04, 1.47

    3, 29.83, 90.57, 8.92, 77.98, 2.81, 1.96

    So our defense is allowing fewer shots since November than in October or during last year’s run. But it’s also been allowing slightly more shots from the high danger area. And Talbot’s not giving us the four and five bell stops he used to.

    Goaltenders who let in bad goals get noticed. Goaltenders who don’t stop high quality chances get less noticed. Both types of goals count.

    It’s true the defense needs to cut down the chances it’s giving the other team in high danger areas but it’s more true that Talbot has to give us just a few more high quality stops (1 every 3 games would be nice).

    Talbot’s play in the last part of the season last year was excellent. He ranked top 10 on sv% among goalies who played a bunch of games. He’s capable of MVP form but he’s not showing it.

    Giving Talbot our MVP award at this point would be rewarding him for good citizenship. The MVP is about performance. I’m cheering like heck for Talbot to earn the award by his performance.

  32. frjohnk says:

    stush18:
    I don’t understand how people on Twitter are still complaining about the hall trade.

    Whether or not you agreed or not, complaining about what “could have” been is ridiculous.

    Like did all these people have ex girlfriends from the back in the day they wistfully wish they still had? Are you all still bemoaning that perfect car you let get away?

    It’s over. Move on. Push the analytics about THIS team forward. Stop showing up at Taylor halls bedroom window in the middle of night telling him he will always belong to you

    People are and will be wary of a GM that uses his biggest bullet to garner a 2nd pairing Dman.

    Right now we have 1 elite driver.

    Drai is starting to bridge that gap we are missing but still some distance to go.

    After that it’s all hope.

  33. russ99 says:

    magneto: New lines in practice-
    Lucic-McDavid-Eberle
    Maroon-Draisaitl-Caggiula
    Pouliot-RNH-Pitlick
    Hendricks-Letestu-Kassian

    Another new mix. Is it going to last 10 minutes before Todd gets fed up again? Five minutes…

    I still want to see Drasaitl-McDavid as a pair but Eberle back on the first line is a good second choice.

    I also suspect we see Beck in the 4th line LW spot.

  34. fifthcartel says:

    stush18,

    I sort-of get this complaint, but I’d argue now more than ever is the most appropriate time to be critical of the Hall trade among other transactions.

    Besides people just generally enjoying various ways of watching/discussing sports, I think its pretty fair to bring up the trading of an elite driver/posession player for a non-elite defensive defensemen when the team struggles to score without McDavid on the ice.

    I don’t think this is the real RNH so I think there may be something to the unlucky RNH/Eberle/Pouliot idea, but having Hall driving a line behind McDavid driving line is worth talking about and hardly ridiculous to bring up.

    The West seems noticeably weaker and fans are curious if a Halls/Demers combination could have made them an stronger team. Especially when we hear from people like Stauffer discussing trading the 1st + a prospect for a shooter to play with McDavid.

    My main complaint about the Hall trade is they just didn’t get a driver on defense back.

  35. Gordies Elbow says:

    fifthcartel,

    As to the Demer’s situation, in order to offer the same after tax income, Edmonton would have needed to offer $5.25m per year. That combined with easier travel in the east, the Florida team finishing 1st in the Atlantic last year, and it’s clear why Demers signed with them.

    I can’t see how Edmonton could have matched Florida’s deal.

  36. Georges says:

    frjohnk: People are and will be wary of a GM that uses his biggest bullet to garner a 2nd pairing Dman.

    Right now we have 1 elite driver.

    Drai is starting to bridge that gap we are missing but still some distance to go.

    After that it’s all hope.

    Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

  37. treevojo says:

    You know what is even better then the Hall/Larsson debate?

    The debate whether people should still be having the Hall/Larsson debate.

  38. OilClog says:

    Mcdavid needs a RW that refuses to think anything other then shoot as soon as the puck arrives, Eberle is not that guy. Ebs and RNH have a long history of producing together, sadly their LW’s have all taken a hiatus that could fill their need. If they’re auditioning Hendricks for a sale why not

    Hendricks/Nuge/Ebs..

    Lucic has actually looked perfectly fine with Mcdavid lately, he understands 97 should have the puck 97% of the time now. Why not try Maroon as the RW? Mcdavid works best when he views his line mates as chess pieces and doesn’t defer to them.

    Lucic/Mcdavid/Maroon.. Breakaways and freight trains.

    Drai is a monster, Pou has looked his best this season riding his current. Kass has had some good jump lately, scoring, hitting, fighting. His off kiltered approach should open ice up for the German, if not Pitlick is a gem.

    Pou/Drai/Kass

    Somehow Drake is down to the 4th, haven’t been all that sold on him imo. Beck has been called up, Pitlick is a tough sell to take out of the line up but they do it. Does Letestu sit while Drake takes up the middle? Why is the Finn still here? They can’t possibly sit him again after such a long break. They will.

    Pitlick/Drake/Pulj
    Drake/Letestu/Pitlick
    Drake/Letestu/Beck
    Beck/Drake/Pitlick
    Letestu/drake/Pulj
    Drake/Pulj/Pitlick

    Really no excuse for this coach to have a stagnant offensive attack, lots of options sitting wasting away. A few 3 for 1 culling of the herds may take place.

  39. fifthcartel says:

    Gordies Elbow,

    I’d still probably do that knowing you have Klefbom signed for cheap and Sekera at a not ridiculous price.

    Also visiting the new arena prior to free agency seems to suggest he was at least willing to sign. I don’t think you’d visit a place you wouldn’t want to play.

  40. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Georges: Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

    Yeah, but last year’s Devils didn’t have that Taylor Hall guy giving away the puck all over the ice, now did they?

    *ducking & running

  41. treevojo says:

    OilClog,

    I was thinking pouliot on mcdavid’s right wing.

    He is a good forchecker, isn’t afraid to shoot, and has enough speed to keep up on the rush.

    Lucic-mcd-pouliot

  42. Gordies Elbow says:

    fifthcartel,

    I’m 100% sure that Edmonton had interest in him, and brought him in to try and make a deal.

    That said, given the challenges with Edmonton’s geography and travel, I’m sure that his agent would have asked for a premium. Would you have gone higher than Sekera’s $5.5m?

  43. frjohnk says:

    Georges: Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

    Many suggest there are only 10 to 15 number 1 Dmen. Just because he is in the top 60 best Dman does not mean he is an actual top pairing Dman.

    Sekera is our best Dman and nobody suggests he is top pairing.

    Spreadsheet test says Larsson is more a second pairing Dman.
    And TOI suggests that we have 2 second pairing D pairs.

    Eye test does he look like top pairing?
    Skating- no
    Skating with puck-no
    Shot-no
    Passing-no
    Offensive play-no
    Positioning-yes
    Defensive play-yes
    Other skills?

    I’d love for Larsson to make the jump as a top pairing Dman as it would be an in house solution to a balanced roster. But he’s not there yet.

  44. Side says:

    fifthcartel:
    Gordies Elbow,

    I’d still probably do that knowing you have Klefbom signed for cheap and Sekera at a not ridiculous price.

    Also visiting the new arena prior to free agency seems to suggest he was at least willing to sign. I don’t think you’d visit a place you wouldn’t want to play.

    Pete inviting him to come visit so he could show him the new arena and talk to him about the team is an indication that Pete wanted to sign him though.

    I don’t see why people use it as an indication that only the player wanted to sign here and the GM didn’t want to sign him, even though it was the GM who invited him in the first place.

  45. JimmyV1965 says:

    BONE207: Well the 3 of us on here today might as well have fun while listening to the Man!!!

    And then I left even before I could read that comment. LOL!!

  46. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Georges: Goaltenders who let in bad goals get noticed. Goaltenders who don’t stop high quality chances get less noticed. Both types of goals count.

    Yet another perceptive comment, Georges. Love your posts.

    The year Devan Dubnyk became the first and still only Oilers’ starter to post a .920 Sv%, he was forever assailed with comments like “soft goals at bad times” (like there’s ever a “good” time to be allowing goals on a team that scores 2 goals a game). I often would snark back “do soft goals count double or something?” because I thought (and think) it was a bum rap.

    Of course the next year the wheels came off for DD, but one of the reasons they came off so quickly was that instead of having the benefit of the doubt from his three good years here, he had this “soft goals” rep and fans were quick to follow their GM’s lead in “asking the question”.

  47. Bruce McCurdy says:

    frjohnk: Many suggest there are only 10 to 15 number 1 Dmen. Just because he is in the top 60 best Dman does not mean he is an actual top pairing Dman.

    Sekera is our best Dman and nobody suggests he is top pairing.

    Spreadsheet test says Larsson is more a second pairing Dman.
    And TOI suggests that we have 2 second pairing D pairs.

    Eye test does he look like top pairing?
    Skating- no
    Skating with puck-no
    Shot-no
    Passing-no
    Offensive play-no
    Positioning-yes
    Defensive play-yes
    Other skills?

    I’d love for Larsson to make the jump as a top pairing Dman as it would be an in house solution to a balanced roster. But he’s not there yet.

    You win the prize for being first to see Adam Larsson as a potential “in house” solution. 😉

  48. JimmyV1965 says:

    adamjames:
    northof51,

    I wonder how much Ekblad’s concussion/whiplash/upper body injury from the World Cup is still rearing its head. He has a bit of concussion history, no?

    I think the World Cup blow was piled on top of existing concussion issues. Feel so badly for the team and player if his career is cut short by this.

  49. kinger_OIL says:

    Georges: Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

    – This is a good insight.

    – I’d add a few other things:

    GF y-t-d: 2.93/game: 4rth in league
    GF 2016: 2.47/game, 25th in league

    GA y-t-d: 2.75/game: 21st in league
    GA 2016 : 2.99/game: 27th in league

    – We score more goals, and we don’t let as much in.

    – We are an elite scoring team, and now middling on D (and mediocre G it seems)

    – That’s who we are, and this is significant progress.

    – we don’t miss Hall’s goals more than the benefit of a deeper D that includes Larsson*ducks*

  50. tsg says:

    northof51:
    Wasn’t around for the glory days, and really appreciate the comparison LT!

    OT, but I need some sensible characters to guide my uncertainty about things.

    I’m a stats guy (love watching, but am all-too aware of my own recency bias), but can’t figure out the Florida Panthers… They make some sensible moves in swapping Kulikov for Pysyk, and then unload the possession drag that is Gudbrannson. But, they (see Aron Ekblad) are somehow a hot mess this year…

    Are they suffering without those intangible Mark Spectorisms that Gudbranson brings to the rink? Or is Brian Campbell just that good?

    People may be forgetting about Huberdeau. That is a 20 goal, 60 point player missing out of their top line. A big injury loss for them for the season to this point. Due back in a little over a month now. I’m curious to see how much he’ll help their lineup.

  51. Georges says:

    fifthcartel,

    So the idea is that McDavid is your first line driver and Taylor Hall is your second line driver. Let’s compare Taylor Hall’s 5v5 numbers from the beginning of the season to McDavid’s return from injury (first line), to Halls’ numbers after McDavid’s return (second line) .

    Line, TOI/GP, CF%, Rel CF%, GF%, Rel GF%, PDO, P60, P160 (goals plus first assists rate per 60)

    First, 15:48, 52.71, 5.62, 54.05, 16.44, 100.30, 2.66, 2.20

    Second, 13:54, 50.45, 2.23, 50.00, 4.55, 99.97, 1.75, 1.75

    Lots of folks wanted Taylor Hall to drive our second line. Did Taylor Hall want to be a second line player?

  52. tsg says:

    stush18:
    I don’t understand how people on Twitter are still complaining about the hall trade.

    Whether or not you agreed or not, complaining about what “could have” been is ridiculous.

    Like did all these people have ex girlfriends from the back in the day they wistfully wish they still had? Are you all still bemoaning that perfect car you let get away?

    It’s over. Move on. Push the analytics about THIS team forward. Stop showing up at Taylor halls bedroom window in the middle of night telling him he will always belong to you

    As long as Chiarelli is GM it will be brought up as it is one of his signature moves, and a reflection on his competence as GM.

  53. Gordies Elbow says:

    kinger_OIL: – This is a good insight.

    GF y-t-d: 2.93/game: 4rth in league
    GF 2016: 2.47/game, 25th in league

    GA y-t-d: 2.75/game: 21st in league
    GA 2016 : 2.99/game: 27th in league

    And that’s with losing over 90 games to injury for Russell, Davidson, Nurse, Gryba, and Fayne.

    Gotta wonder where the stats would be if they were healthy.

  54. Timeisnow says:

    Georges: Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

    Georges good post! I understand people and their comments about losing a driver. I like Hall thinks he’s a good LW probably top 3 in the league. I also like Larsson he’s not a top 3 dman in the league but I think he’s a 3/4 on a very good defensive group.

    I don’t think he’s totally comfortable yet, some players can take 60 games. He’s played a lot with Klef and Klef is going to be real good, but he’s just nicely learning the position.I personally would like to see
    Sekera and Larsson on the top pairing, and have Davidson, Russell as the second pairing and Klef/Benning on the third pairing. See how that looks for awhile.

    It would be great to give Klef some breathing room for a bit then move him up.

  55. fifthcartel says:

    Georges,

    If they were going to have a Crosby/Malkin type thing, I don’t think he’d care. Take time away from the third and fourth lines and I’m betting that’s a successful lineup.

    I’m also becoming increasingly curious why they didn’t move the Benson pick for Anthony DeAngelo.

  56. kinger_OIL says:

    Gordies Elbow: And that’s with losing over 90 games to injury for Russell, Davidson, Nurse, Gryba, and Fayne.

    Gotta wonder where the stats would be if they were healthy.

    – Good point. And with Hall missing his games, it’s not like we’d see increased GF.*ducks again*

    – Those not conceding that Chia did a marvelous job on D by adding Larsson, Russell, Benning plus putting Nurse in proper position are being selective with their analysis of Chia’s body of work.

  57. JimmyV1965 says:

    frjohnk: Many suggest there are only 10 to 15 number 1 Dmen. Just because he is in the top 60 best Dman does not mean he is an actual top pairing Dman.

    Sekera is our best Dman and nobody suggests he is top pairing.

    Spreadsheet test says Larsson is more a second pairing Dman.
    And TOI suggests that we have 2 second pairing D pairs.

    Eye test does he look like top pairing?
    Skating- no
    Skating with puck-no
    Shot-no
    Passing-no
    Offensive play-no
    Positioning-yes
    Defensive play-yes
    Other skills?

    I’d love for Larsson to make the jump as a top pairing Dman as it would be an in house solution to a balanced roster. But he’s not there yet.

    The question I have, is Larsson as quick as Vlassic? For the Hall trade to work – it will never be fair – Larsson has to become as good defensively as Vlassic. I think he has the tools to do that, but he’s not very fast. Can he become an elite defender with his wheels?

    PS. I still bemoan the deal because it really shook my confidence in Chia as GM. It really has nothing to do with Hall at this point. I’ve never once questioned Chia about the Reinhart deal because every GM loses trades and you have to cut them some slack. But there are some trades where you put everything on the line and Hall was one of them. Most GMs will never make one trade of that magnitude and Chia has made four or five and lost every one of them.

  58. JimmyV1965 says:

    Georges:
    fifthcartel,

    So the idea is that McDavid is your first line driver and Taylor Hall is your second line driver. Let’s compare Taylor Hall’s 5v5 numbers from the beginning of the season to McDavid’s return from injury (first line), to Halls’ numbers after McDavid’s return (second line) .

    Line, TOI/GP, CF%, Rel CF%, GF%, Rel GF%, PDO, P60, P160 (goals plus first assists rate per 60)

    First, 15:48, 52.71, 5.62, 54.05, 16.44, 100.30, 2.66, 2.20

    Second, 13:54, 50.45, 2.23, 50.00, 4.55, 99.97, 1.75, 0.81

    Lots of folks wanted Taylor Hall to drive our second line. Did Taylor Hall want to be a second line player?

    No offence, but this is the stuff that bugs me about some commentary on the trade and the usual reason I wade back into the debate. Why do some people feel compelled to denigrate Hall? The guy can clearly drive a line because he’s done it his entire career. And he stated countless times that Connor was the leader of this team and seemed quite happy with that. Why would he have a problem heading up the second line? That’s what good team do.

  59. kinger_OIL says:

    Bohologo: Sure you would; visiting another arena prior to signing day signals to the rest of the market that you’ve got plenty of options.Free agency is an asymmetric information contest, and if you can demonstrate interest even when there is none, you’re helping your side.

    – Yes: It made sense for Chia (who is looking for a RHD), to publicly trot out Demers, to show that he has option. It made sense for Demers (who is looking for a contract), to publicly trot around with Chia to show that he has options: win-win

    – If there was a deal that made sense to both parties, I’m sure they would have done so. Neither party was trotting around publicly for sh$ts and giggles.

  60. theres oil in virginia says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yet another perceptive comment, Georges. Love your posts.

    Ditto. Been meaning to say that.

  61. frjohnk says:

    JimmyV1965: The question I have, is Larsson as quick as Vlassic? For the Hall trade to work – it will never be fair – Larsson has to become as good defensively as Vlassic. I think he has the tools to do that, but he’s not very fast. Can he become an elite defender with his wheels?

    Vlasic is a very good skater and is underrated offensively. 39 points last year.

    Not sure Larsson is a good comparable

  62. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    Do you remember which thread it was where I went through the work on the KINGER/60 numbers?

    I went looking for it, but couldn’t find it.

    Thank you in advance.

  63. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    I have it on a very good authority that Demers wanted to sign here.

    They held off signing anything all day July 1st waiting for the offer from EDM.

    It never came, so he called and was told that EDM was no longer interested and Demers signed early July 2nd.

    EDM had interest in Demers, but when Lucic told them he was coming they cleared the cap space by moving Hall for a Larsson and no longer had the room for Demers.

    I think they could have fit him in, but it would have been really close given the bonus overages needed to be accounted for.

  64. treevojo says:

    JimmyV1965: No offence, but this is the stuff that bugs me about some commentary on the trade and the usual reason I wade back into the debate. Why do some people feel compelled to denigrate Hall? The guy can clearly drive a line because he’s done it his entire career.And he stated countless times that Connor was the leader of this team and seemed quite happy with that. Why would he have a problem heading up the second line? That’s what good team do.

    I disagree.

    That post along with any others that include statistical analysis are the only ones that add anything to the Hall/Larsson debate.

    It is the posts that start with “Did you see what Hall did today” that add nothing new and are meant to antagonize.

    Those comments seem to come from both sides of the debate.

  65. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    I also think they could have added Lucic and Demers while keeping Hall, but again it would have been really, really tight this year.

    They tried hard not to move Hall, but in the end he was the only big ticket out that brought any real value coming back.

    If Peter had a do-over I bet he might keep Hall and take the RNH for Dumba trade and then sign both Demers and Lucic.

    No one offered much for Eberle and they tried to move Pouliot without taking much money back but that wasn’t happening either.

  66. treevojo says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    I have it on a very good authority that Demers wanted to sign here.

    They held off signing anything all day July 1st waiting for the offer from EDM.

    It never came, so he called and was told that EDM was no longer interested and Demers signed early July 2nd.

    EDM had interest in Demers, but when Lucic told them he was coming they cleared the cap space by moving Hall for a Larsson and no longer had the room for Demers.

    I think they could have fit him in, but it would have been really close given the bonus overages needed to be accounted for.

    Any idea of the salary and term that was being thrown around?

  67. Georges says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yet another perceptive comment, Georges. Love your posts.

    The year Devan Dubnyk became the first and still only Oilers’ starter to post a .920 Sv%, he was forever assailed with comments like “soft goals at bad times” (like there’s ever a “good” time to be allowing goals on a team that scores 2 goals a game). I often would snark back “do soft goals count double or something?” because I thought (and think) it was a bum rap.

    Of course the next year the wheels came off for DD, but one of the reasons they came off so quickly was that instead of having the benefit of the doubt from his three good years here, he had this “soft goals” rep and fans were quick to follow their GM’s lead in “asking the question”.

    Thanks, Bruce! It’s a mutual admiration society then.

    Dubnyk’s MVP-level resurrection is astonishing. But Nilsson is having a mini resurrection in Buffalo too.

    Some teams (Montreal, Minnesota, Buffalo) have been high save percentage goalie factories. Other teams (us, Calgary, Winnipeg) have been low save percentage goalie graveyards.

    I am definitely, definitely rooting for Talbot. I worry about pointing out anything about his play because I don’t want to invite the question. Because, as you pointed out in Dubnyk’s case, questioning plays a real part in undoing a goalie.

  68. go_oil says:

    I loved Wednesday’s metaphor of the Oilers needing to find a way to fire all pistons. I don’t think we’ve seen this group reach it’s full potential yet this season, which bodes well for a playoff push. I don’t mind the line juggling to find the best chemistry/balance in the group – but I hope they find it quick.

    I agree with KINGER_OIL’s assessment – the offence is going, they need to tighten up on their defense as a whole – drop that GA down. And McLellan touched on it in his presser – the little plays and checks to clear the zone, advance the puck, and win battles – this team has not done this consistently as a group. I think the trade has benefited both the Devils and Oilers… long term I’d rather have Larsson over Demers.

    And it will be interesting to see how they handle Puljujarvi and Caggiula the rest of the way. I don’t mind if they are sent down for Khaira and Lander to come back up at some point.

  69. kinger_OIL says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    Do you remember which thread it was where I went through the work on the KINGER/60 numbers?

    I went looking for it, but couldn’t find it.

    Thank you in advance.

    – Can’t remember either, but LT has a “search engine” that can do that if he was so kind?

    – On that note: I’ve often said it would be a neat feature, if we could actually do a “LT Google Search”, and get the list of various posters comments.

    – I guess the downside to that would be that people could go over with fine tooth comb anything anyone said, and could descend into free-fall…

  70. Bruce Wayne says:

    Georges: Adam Larsson played first pairing minutes on a team that was 8th in GAA (2.46) last year.

    That team, without Larsson, sits at 23rd in GAA (2.97) so far this season.

    I would tell my eyes to look at that information closely if my eyes told me that Adam Larsson is not one of the top 60 defensemen in this league.

    I’m not sure if it is intentional, but it is disengenous to give credit to Larsson for the high save percentage of Devil goaltenders last year, but no blame for the astonishing low save percentage Oilers’ goaltenders have this year when Larsson is on the ice.

    If there is one thing the Larsson experience should have demonstrated is you can’t judge defenseman based on how the goalies’ behind them perform.

    There aren’t sixty top pairing D in the league, and even if there were, you’d be hard pressed to make a case that Larsson is one of them. He isn’t the best D on this team, and this team doesn’t have anyone who is a sure fire top pairing D.

    People keep bringing up the trade because the trade wasn’t simply bad, but ludicrous.

    Honest question. What do you think Larsson’s trade value is today? Could you get Matt Duchene for him? Of course not, not even close. And Taylor Hall is a better player than Matt Duchene.

    The trade wasn’t simply bad, it was ridiculous. The kind of trade that if someone suggested it on a message board they’d be mocked mercilessly. And yet it happened. That isn’t the kind of thing that is every going to go away..

  71. Woodguy says:

    treevojo: Any idea of the salary and term that was being thrown around?

    Nope.

    You’d guess it was close to what he signed for in FLA.

    ~5MM/yr x 5

  72. krakman says:

    Woodguy,

    So it sounds like they decided to do whatever it took to sign Lucic and add a rhd. I admit I might be biased but does any one really think Lucic complements McDavid in any way?

  73. Chachi says:

    Bruce Wayne: Honest question. What do you think Larsson’s trade value is today? Could you get Matt Duchene for him? Of course not, not even close. And Taylor Hall is a better player than Matt Duchene.

    And yet you would not have been able to trade Hall for Duchene.

  74. Gordies Elbow says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    I have it on a very good authority that Demrs wanted to sign here.

    They held off signing anything all day July 1st waiting for the offer from EDM.

    It never came, so he called and was told that EDM was no longer interested and Demers signed early July 2nd.

    EDM had interest in Demers, but when Lucic told them he was coming they cleared the cap space by moving Hall for a Larsson and no longer had the room for Demers.

    I think they could have fit him in, but it would have been really close given the bonus overages needed to be accounted for.

    I’m not getting the timelines.

    Was Chiarelli trying to sign Demers after trading Hall for Larsson? (Taylor Hall was traded on June 29th)

    Did Chiarelli come to a handshake deal with Bob Sauve, and then back away from it on July 1st?

    Also, any idea what the deal would have looked like?

  75. GMB3 says:

    Bruce Wayne: I’m not sure if it is intentional, but it is disengenous to give credit to Larsson for the high save percentage of Devil goaltenders last year, but no blame for the astonishing low save percentage Oilers’ goaltenders have this year when Larsson is on the ice.

    If there is one thing the Larsson experience should have demonstrated is you can’t judge defenseman based on how the goalies’ behind them perform.

    There aren’t sixty top pairing D in the league, and even if there were, you’d be hard pressed to make a case that Larsson is one of them.He isn’t the best D on this team, and this team doesn’t have anyone who is a sure fire top pairing D.

    People keep bringing up the trade because the trade wasn’t simply bad, but ludicrous.

    Honest question.What do you think Larsson’s trade value is today?Could you get Matt Duchene for him?Of course not, not even close.And Taylor Hall is a better player than Matt Duchene.

    The trade wasn’t simply bad, it was ridiculous.The kind of trade that if someone suggested it on a message board they’d be mocked mercilessly.And yet it happened.That isn’t the kind of thing that is every going to go away..

    I’d take Matt Duchene over Taylor Hall in a heartbeat. There is a reason one of those two players is seen as Team Canada worthy

  76. Chachi says:

    GMB3: I’d take Matt Duchene over Taylor Hall in a heartbeat. There is a reason one of those two players is seen as Team Canada worthy

    Yup.

  77. GMB3 says:

    Gordies Elbow: I’m not getting the timelines.

    Was Chiarelli trying to sign Demers after trading Hall for Larsson? (Taylor Hall was traded on June 29th)

    Did Chiarelli come to a handshake deal with Bob Sauve, and then back away from it on July 1st?

    Also, any idea what the deal would have looked like?

    Chia had Demers and Lucic come visit the arena prior to the trade.

  78. Bruce Wayne says:

    Chachi: And yet you would not have been able to trade Hall for Duchene.

    That’s ridiculous.

    Since your evaluation of Taylor Hall is so far off of mine, I have an honest question. Name me a player you think is comparable?

  79. Gordies Elbow says:

    GMB3,

    Yep, but Demer’s agent Bob Sauve couldn’t complete a deal until free agency starts on July 1st. The Hall-Larsson trade was June 28th.

    Why would Demer’s wait until July 2nd for an offer from Edmonton?

  80. GMB3 says:

    Bruce Wayne: That’s ridiculous.

    Since your evaluation of Taylor Hall is so far off of mine, I have an honest question.Name me a player you think is comparable?

    Thanks for reminding me you’re smarter than everyone in professional hockey because you like numbers and not enough people in the NHL do, so therefore you are much more equipped to evaluate players.

    Projecting the attitude that you are always right doesn’t mean you are.

  81. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL: – Can’t remember either, but LT has a “search engine” that can do that if he was so kind?

    – On that note: I’ve often said it would be a neat feature, if we could actually do a “LT Google Search”, and get the list of various posters comments.

    – I guess the downside to that would be that people could go over with fine tooth comb anything anyone said, and could descend into free-fall…

    Thanks anyhow.

    I thought it was within the last month and not in a GDT, but I looked at em all and didn’t see it.

    Mind you I was scrolling pretty fast looking for the massive line of player results and may have missed it.

    Do you think it happened within the last 3 weeks?

  82. Bruce Wayne says:

    GMB3: I’d take Matt Duchene over Taylor Hall in a heartbeat. There is a reason one of those two players is seen as Team Canada worthy

    Since 2012-13 Taylor Hall has outscored Matt Duchene, while giving up fewer shots, attempted shots, expected goals, and goals, than Duchene.

    No matter what indicator of defensive ability you choose, Taylor Hall is going to come out ahead of Matt Duchene. Over a very long sample of games Taylor Hall has contributed to more goals for while contributing to fewer goals against than Matt Duchene. That is a simple fact.

    I am quite sure that the people that run Team Canada do not know this. I am not sure why their ignorance would contribute to their credibility.

    You’ve made an argument from authority. Unfortunately arguments from authority don’t carry very much authority.

  83. N64 says:

    kinger_OIL: – Can’t remember either, but LT has a “search engine” that can do that if he was so kind?

    – On that note: I’ve often said it would be a neat feature, if we could actually do a “LT Google Search”, and get the list of various posters comments.

    – I guess the downside to that would be that people could go over with fine tooth comb anything anyone said, and could descend into free-fall…

    fall away:

    Dec:

    https://www.google.ca/search?q=kinger_oil%20site%3Alowetide.ca%2F2016%2F12

    Nov:

    https://www.google.ca/search?q=kinger_oil%20site%3Alowetide.ca%2F2016%2F11

  84. Bruce Wayne says:

    GMB3: Thanks for reminding me you’re smarter than everyone in professional hockey because you like numbers and not enough people in the NHL do, so therefore you are much more equipped to evaluate players.

    Projecting the attitude that you are always right doesn’t mean you are.

    Being right is what makes you right. I’ll ask you the same honest question. If Taylor Hall is worse than Matt Duchene, who is the same as?

    We are really getting to the heart of the matter here. Not only do Edmonton Oiler fans not think that Taylor Hall is a superstar, they don’t even think he is particularly good. I am beginning to think that there is a segment of the fanbase who would have been happy with any living, breathing, NHL defenseman.

  85. Georges says:

    fifthcartel:
    Georges,

    If they were going to have a Crosby/Malkin type thing, I don’t think he’d care. Take time away from the third and fourth lines and I’m betting that’s a successful lineup.

    I’m also becoming increasingly curious why they didn’t move the Benson pick for Anthony DeAngelo.

    You’re right. I have no idea if it would’ve worked out. But I believe that it would have not worked out, partly on Hall having to accept a secondary role but mostly on how far the team needed to get on the defensive side of things even with both of them in the lineup (as evidenced by their record after McDavid’s return from injury).

    I remember thinking man look at our forwards. Three scoring lines. Resistance is futile. I thought we would go on a 10 game win streak after the Columbus and Ottawa games. Then came Montreal. And then the Islanders. And then the dark slog, lit up with an occasional firework from McDavid, to the end.

    Gretzky, Lemieux, and Crosby got Messier, Jagr, and Malkin after they arrived on their teams. Hall, to me, seems a type A guy who wants and needs A minutes. He gets to be a type A guy in New Jersey.

    If New Jersey and Schneider find the goals against script again, he’s exactly what that team needs. I don’t believe that he’s exactly what a team with Connor McDavid needs.

  86. theres oil in virginia says:

    Woodguy: I do appreciate the help.

    KO posts in every thread though….

    hehe

    If you add some keywords to those searches that N64 posted, I bet you’ld find it. I remember the discussion occurring, but not enough about it to attempt a search.

  87. stush18 says:

    Thanks for the replys guys.

    What I was getting at is we are analyzing this thing every single day. I follow lots of very smart hockey people on here and Twitter, and they’ve stopped searching and digging up different analytical gems.

    This isn’t a slag on woodguy, but he was certain arcobello could slot in as our number 2 centre a couple years ago. Numbers backed him up, but it turns out he was wrong. He didn’t have the full picture, despite the excellent work done.

    Let’s do this again. Let’s dig into slepyshev and beck and letestu and see if we can determine a pattern, draw some conclusions. Let’s stop talking about halls driving ability. Get over it.

    Want to talk the history of chiarelli? Sure mention the hall trade then. But let’s get into the math of OUR players again. I would like too, but now that I’m out of school I’m too busy to do much more than comment opinion rather than dig into facts.

    Also, let’s everyone take a humble pill. No matter what these numbers say, these are professionals trying to make this team better. None of us have been there, so I’m not sure it’s fair to draw a firm conclusion now one way or the other, if ever.

  88. tsg says:

    Woodguy:
    kinger_OIL,

    I also think they could have added Lucic and Demers while keeping Hall, but again it would have been really, really tight this year.

    They tried hard not to move Hall, but in the end he was the only big ticket out that brought any real value coming back.

    If Peter had a do-over I bet he might keep Hall and take the RNH for Dumba trade and then sign both Demers and Lucic.

    No one offered much for Eberle and they tried to move Pouliot without taking much money back but that wasn’t happening either.

    It would have been tight, but doable to have both Hall and Lucic. That would have been my preference. The forward depth on that team would have been unrivaled. Pulijarvi in the minors for cap bonus reasons wouldn’t have been the worst thing in the world. It may have even been worth while to add a draft pick or some other sweetener to Pouliot, to make a deal work if bonus space was that much of a concern.

  89. Georges says:

    Bruce Wayne: I’m not sure if it is intentional, but it is disengenous to give credit to Larsson for the high save percentage of Devil goaltenders last year, but no blame for the astonishing low save percentage Oilers’ goaltenders have this year when Larsson is on the ice.

    If there is one thing the Larsson experience should have demonstrated is you can’t judge defenseman based on how the goalies’ behind them perform.

    There aren’t sixty top pairing D in the league, and even if there were, you’d be hard pressed to make a case that Larsson is one of them.He isn’t the best D on this team, and this team doesn’t have anyone who is a sure fire top pairing D.

    People keep bringing up the trade because the trade wasn’t simply bad, but ludicrous.

    Honest question.What do you think Larsson’s trade value is today?Could you get Matt Duchene for him?Of course not, not even close.And Taylor Hall is a better player than Matt Duchene.

    The trade wasn’t simply bad, it was ridiculous.The kind of trade that if someone suggested it on a message board they’d be mocked mercilessly.And yet it happened.That isn’t the kind of thing that is every going to go away..

    Honest reply. I’m not looking to trade Adam Larsson.

    I wonder about the low save percentage with Larsson on the ice. I wonder about the inexplicable, no pressure giveaways that I saw in a couple of games. I also wonder why he’s not handling the puck as confidently as I saw at the beginning of the season.

    I think I’ve mentioned that I like to cheer for and not against the players on the team. I know that New Jersey valued him enough to give him first pairing minutes. I can see things in Larsson’s game and manner that suggest to me that he competes and that he can help a team win. If that’s not happening to its fullest potential yet after 32 games in his Oilers career, hey, I can wait, because he’ll come around as the coaching staff gets more out of the rest of the team and the rest of the team becomes more cohesive around McDavid.

    I don’t object in any way to you bringing up the trade and how bad it was whenever the Oilers drop a couple of games. I don’t object in any way with you expressing your view of Larsson’s modest abilities. The position you’ve taken leaves you very little room to see positives in Adam Larsson’s game or future with the Oilers. That’s where you live. I live somewhere else. I have lots of room.

  90. sliderule says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yet another perceptive comment, Georges. Love your posts.

    The year Devan Dubnyk became the first and still only Oilers’ starter to post a .920 Sv%, he was forever assailed with comments like “soft goals at bad times” (like there’s ever a “good” time to be allowing goals on a team that scores 2 goals a game). I often would snark back “do soft goals count double or something?” because I thought (and think) it was a bum rap.

    Of course the next year the wheels came off for DD, but one of the reasons they came off so quickly was that instead of having the benefit of the doubt from his three good years here, he had this “soft goals” rep and fans were quick to follow their GM’s lead in “asking the question”.

    I think you played goal so probably you don’t appreciate how deflating letting in long high floaters like Duby was doing is to a team.When the score from slot when no one is even near the guy like Talbot was having happen the players forgive.
    The fact that Duby was doing this while dealing with a new firstborn and according to reports not getting much sleep is partly on the oilers.Maybe they helped his family in dealing with it but I heard crickets.Then Mact comes in and destroys what little confidence he had with his comments..
    It’s the oiler way.

  91. stush18 says:

    Bruce Wayne: Since 2012-13 Taylor Hall has outscored Matt Duchene, while giving up fewer shots, attempted shots, expected goals, and goals, than Duchene.

    No matter what indicator of defensive ability you choose, Taylor Hall is going to come out ahead of Matt Duchene.Over a very long sample of games Taylor Hall has contributed to more goals for while contributing to fewer goals against than MattDuchene.That is a simple fact.

    I am quite sure that the people that run Team Canada do not know this.I am not sure why their ignorance would contribute to their credibility.

    You’ve made an argument from authority.Unfortunately arguments from authority don’t carry very much authority.

    I think team canada prefers centres to wingers. The ability to play any position matters a lot to them. In a tourney of small samples, you can’t stick with the same lineup of it isn’t working. Not enough time to let a line work itself out.

    Hall needs one of the top three left wing spots, because he doesn’t kill penalties. Marchand has one because of his chemistry with Bergeron.

    Now you two spots left and you have benn taking one. So you have one left. Does it go to hall? Where does Tavares play?

    Now I think if you could add hall to any recent team and they still win regardless. But it’s hard to argue with a winning roster.

  92. Bruce McCurdy says:

    stush18: Also, let’s everyone take a humble pill.

    But I don’t want to take a humble pill, I want to take a pill that’s absolutely fucking sure of itself.

  93. kinger_OIL says:

    Woodguy,

    for sure less than a month ago, and likely 3 weeks, but I’m getting old

  94. kinger_OIL says:

    N64: fall away:

    Dec:

    https://www.google.ca/search?q=kinger_oil%20site%3Alowetide.ca%2F2016%2F12

    Nov:

    https://www.google.ca/search?q=kinger_oil%20site%3Alowetide.ca%2F2016%2F11

    – This is danger! Thanks though…So one can type in any nic and get same results: cool!

    – Funny how I say some google like search engine, and in fact, its exactly a google search engine!

  95. Bruce McCurdy says:

    sliderule: I think you played goal so probably you don’t appreciate how deflating letting in long high floaters like Duby was doing is to a team.When the score from slot when no one is even near the guy like Talbot was having happen the players forgive.
    The fact that Duby was doing this while dealing with a new firstbornand according to reports not getting much sleepis partly on the oilers.Maybe they helped his family in dealing with it but I heard crickets.Then Mact comes in and destroys what little confidence he had with his comments..
    It’s the oiler way.

    I was talking about the season Before the firstborn and MacT’s comments and the gear changes and the Swarm and the Spanish Inquisition. Even then people were critiquing Dubnyk on the 8% of shots that beat him without much accounting for the 92% that didn’t.

    As for what a soft goal does to a team, how is that different from a horrendous giveaway or brutal coverage fail that leads to a goal?

    I was taught it’s a team and the goalie is part of it, even as he stands out for obvious reasons, starting with those pads.

    One of my teachers was the great Scott Young (father of Neil), who in his superb book The Leafs I Knew reproduced this column from 1958 December 13:

    “All right, you guys,” said Punch Imlach behind the Leaf bench when Rangers were leading 4-3, late in the third, “your goalkeeper is a horse’s-deleted if you don’t get that goal back, and this is a team, and you don’t want anybody on it to be a horse’s-deleted. So get it back.”

    On such straightforward little lectures in ethical behaviour are unbeaten streaks maintained. Dick Duff, with his fifth goal in five games, got it back at 18:38 of the third period. Rangers had gone ahead on a bounce off the backboards that Johnny Bower had tried to trap, but missed. That left him out of position and the puck on Dean Prentice’s stick for an easy goal. It would have been a lousy goal on which to lose a game, especially after Leafs had led Rangers, 3-1, in the third.

    When Bower came off the ice he said to Imlach, “I blew that one for us.”

    Imlach said: “Forget it. They tied it for you. Just remember that now you owe them something.”

    So far in the past that the word “ass” needed to be deleted from a family newspaper (and even a derivative book), but the underlying principles of the game and team play have really not changed at all.

    That tying goal in 1958 was the exact same one I was desperately hoping for in Philadelphia last week. After all, this is a team, and we wouldn’t want Oscar Klefbom to be a horse’s-deleted. Or the goalie, for that matter.

  96. Georges says:

    JimmyV1965: No offence, but this is the stuff that bugs me about some commentary on the trade and the usual reason I wade back into the debate. Why do some people feel compelled to denigrate Hall? The guy can clearly drive a line because he’s done it his entire career.And he stated countless times that Connor was the leader of this team and seemed quite happy with that. Why would he have a problem heading up the second line? That’s what good team do.

    Hmm, you took this as a shot against his ability to drive a line? Nope. He’s great. I was saying while it might have been good for the Oilers to have Taylor Hall on the second line, it may not have been good for Taylor Hall. If the local media asks him if he’s OK taking a back seat to a player like McDavid, he’s going to say of course he’s OK. That’s just Hall being a good teammate and meeting the NHL code. So it’s not a problem, but after five years of being the man, yeah, it is. The precedent I can come up with involving a superstar joining an underachieving team that already had a star is San Antonio with Tim Duncan and David Robinson. But that was already a strong team, Robinson was in the second part of his career and he wanted a championship.

    But before you say that’s just my opinion, that’s just my opinion.

  97. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: But I don’t want to take a humble pill, I want to take a pill that’s absolutely fucking sure of itself.

    Get a referral to Brian Burke’s GP, then.

  98. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: I was talking about the season Before the firstborn and MacT’s comments and the gear changes and the Swarm and the Spanish Inquisition. Even then people were critiquing Dubnyk on the 8% of shots that beat him without much accounting for the 92% that didn’t.

    As for what a soft goal does to a team, how is that different from a horrendous giveaway or brutal coverage fail that leads to a goal?

    I was taught it’s a team and the goalie is part of it, even as he stands out for obvious reasons, starting with those pads.

    One of my teachers was the great Scott Young (father of Neil), who in his superb book The Leafs I Knew reproduced this column from 1958 December 13:

    So far in the past that the word “ass” needed to be deleted from a family newspaper (and even a derivative book), but the underlying principles of the game and team play have really not changed at all.

    That tying goal in 1958 was the exact same one I was desperately hoping for in Philadelphia last week. After all, this is a team, and we wouldn’t want Oscar Klefbom to be a horse’s-deleted. Or the goalie, for that matter.

    This is an awesome reference, Bruce.

    Thank you for posting it.

    Also, the people I know who know people. Wow.

  99. Side says:

    Georges: Hmm, you took this as a shot against his ability to drive a line? Nope. He’s great. I was saying while it might have been good for the Oilers to have Taylor Hall on the second line, it may not have been good for Taylor Hall. If the local media asks him if he’s OK taking a back seat to a player like McDavid, he’s going to say of course he’s OK. That’s just Hall being a good teammate and meeting the NHL code. So it’s not a problem, but after five years of being the man, yeah, it is. The precedent I can come up with involving a superstar joining an underachieving team that already had a star is San Antonio with Tim Duncan and David Robinson. But that was already a strong team, Robinson was in the second part of his career and he wanted a championship.

    But before you say that’s just my opinion, that’s just my opinion.

    I don’t get the impression that Hall, who seemed absolutely devastated about being traded, would have objected to having a superstar join his team who could help him and his team get into the playoffs for the first time in his career.

    Especially when him and that superstar become good friends and roommates.

    I don’t buy it, and I haven’t seen anything to support the “Hall hates not being the top dog” view.

  100. Bruce McCurdy says:

    frjohnk: Vlasic is a very good skater and is underrated offensively. 39 pointslast year.

    Not sure Larsson is a good comparable

    Vlasic did have a fine offensive season last year, the second of his career. Worth noting that he did so at age 28, a.k.a. his peak.

    Interesting to compare Vlasic and Larsson at similar ages. These are boxcars only. Note: Larsson (Nov 12 birthday) is nearly 8 months younger than Vlasic (Mar 30) in each row:

    Age ||| M-E Vlasic ||| Adam Larsson

    19 ||| 81 3 23 26 ||| 65 2 16 18
    20 ||| 82 2 12 14 ||| 37 0 6 6
    21 ||| 82 6 30 36 ||| 26 1 2 3

    22 ||| 64 3 13 16 ||| 64 3 21 24
    23 ||| 80 4 14 18 ||| 82 3 15 18
    24 ||| 82 4 19 23 ||| 32* 2 4 6

    25 ||| 48 3 4 7
    26 ||| 81 5 19 24
    27 ||| 70 9 14 23
    28 ||| 67 8 31 39
    29 ||| 29* 3 4 7

    Bottom season for each is the current one, so incomplete.

    Vlasic had one big early season (21 powerplay points were a big contributor), but at 23 he was very close to Larsson’s current level and remained in that neighbourhood for a few years, all the while being considered an outstanding defender by insiders.

    Obviously boxcars do a poor job of identifying “outstanding defenders” but you did say “underrated offensively”. I would suggest Vlasic’s 2015-16 season was something of an outlier and he’s more of a 25-point guy. Not unreasonable to expect Larsson to be in that range.

  101. treevojo says:

    Bruce Wayne: Since 2012-13 Taylor Hall has outscored Matt Duchene, while giving up fewer shots, attempted shots, expected goals, and goals, than Duchene.

    No matter what indicator of defensive ability you choose, Taylor Hall is going to come out ahead of Matt Duchene.Over a very long sample of games Taylor Hall has contributed to more goals for while contributing to fewer goals against than MattDuchene.That is a simple fact.

    I am quite sure that the people that run Team Canada do not know this.I am not sure why their ignorance would contribute to their credibility.

    You’ve made an argument from authority.Unfortunately arguments from authority don’t carry very much authority.

    Since 2013-14 to current day Duchene has put up more goals and points playing a more demanding position on imo just as bad team.

    It’s ok for people to like players more then Hall.

    It doesn’t make them stupid.

  102. Georges says:

    frjohnk: Many suggest there are only 10 to 15 number 1 Dmen. Just because he is in the top 60 best Dman does not mean he is an actual top pairing Dman.

    Sekera is our best Dman and nobody suggests he is top pairing.

    Spreadsheet test says Larsson is more a second pairing Dman.
    And TOI suggests that we have 2 second pairing D pairs.

    Eye test does he look like top pairing?
    Skating- no
    Skating with puck-no
    Shot-no
    Passing-no
    Offensive play-no
    Positioning-yes
    Defensive play-yes
    Other skills?

    I’d love for Larsson to make the jump as a top pairing Dman as it would be an in house solution to a balanced roster. But he’s not there yet.

    I still don’t get the top pairing thing, but I’ll stick with there are only 10-15 really, really valuable defensemen definition.

    A few weeks back I pulled the stats off the NHL site for all defensemen who played at least 20 minutes a game last season. I used simple k-means clustering to separate them into 2 groups. The first group included the top pair guys (Doughty, Suter, Karlsson, etc.).

    Basically, the top pair guys brought more offense, they got PP time, and they took more shots, all of which, as you would imagine, are correlated. Sekera is the only one of our guys who fell into the top cluster. (Klefbom didn’t generate enough offense before he was done for the season.) The nice thing about Nurse is that he likes to shoot, which is a characteristic of top pair guys.

    Most of the scoring edge came from PP time. At even strength, top pair guys produce a point every 3rd game while not top pair guys produce a point roughly every 4th game. Top pair guys get a PP point every 5th game while not top pair guys get no PP production.

    So for Larsson to jump to top pair, he needs PP time. Someone on the Oilers has to decide to give him a chance to set his ceiling at Brent Burns if they haven’t already decided his ceiling is Vlasic. And, by the way, I’m still working through it, but Vlasic (not top-pair by the clustering) is possibly more important to the Sharks than Burns (top pair by the clustering). Vlasic is a very good ceiling.

  103. N64 says:

    RexLibris: Get a referral to Brian Burke’s GP, then.

    In triple blind studies even the pill is uncertain it’s a placebo. 😉

  104. N64 says:

    kinger_OIL: – This is danger!Thanks though…So one can type in any nic and get same results: cool!

    – Funny how I say some google like search engine, and in fact, its exactly a google search engine!

    Yes. You can make the search terms whatever you want. You can change or drop the month or the year. You can search any site that Google searches

    Did not find “kinger/60”. What was your original question? Did not remember enough to find it.

  105. RexLibris says:

    N64: In triple blind studies even the pill is uncertain it’s a placebo.

    So Burke is actually in the control group?

    Wouldn’t surprise me one bit.

    Something about taking a sip from a firehose.

  106. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris: So Burke is actually in the control group?

    Wouldn’t surprise me one bit.

    Something about taking a sip from a firehose.

    I think Burke’s hair might be impact the survey.

  107. Chachi says:

    Bruce Wayne: That’s ridiculous.

    Since your evaluation of Taylor Hall is so far off of mine, I have an honest question.Name me a player you think is comparable?

    This has nothing to do with my evaluation of Taylor Hall. I think he is a better player than Matt Duchene. I also know you could not have traded Hall for Duchene. There’s this thing called the real world where people who are really good at their jobs do not seem to get recognized for it no matter what they do. Taylor Hall seems to be one of those people for reasons most of us do not understand. You can prattle on forever about how trading Hall for Larsson was a bad move and I would agree with you. The correct thing to do would have been to not trade him at all, but alas we are here. The world is unfair and the Oilers with Adam Larsson and not Taylor Hall have a chance at making the playoffs. We will never know what could have been. I am not going to tell you to get over it because it is your right to be upset about it, but you might want to rethink attacking people who have come to terms with the fact that Hall is gone and his value on the trade market, as measured in right shooting defencemen, was Adam Larsson.

  108. Georges says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    I thought we had that tying goal. I think Eberle hit the post in the last minute. It would’ve been so satisfying to see a no, you’re not beating us game out of the Oilers instead of the Flyers that night.

  109. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: I think Burke’s hair might be impact the survey.

    Burke’s tie is the tie-breaker.

  110. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Georges:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    I thought we had that tying goal. I think Eberle hit the post in the last minute. It would’ve been so satisfying to see a no, you’re not beating us game out of the Oilers instead of the Flyers that night.

    Man that game hurt. I don’t invest emotionally in many games any more but always make an exception for the Flyers, a franchise that I have loathed since before the Oilers were even in the NHL. Moreover I was not one of the many who forgave the Manning-Del Zotto double team as a “hockey play” so beating them has become an even higher priority. Bastards.

    Blowing that lead, then coming so close to the tying goal was nothing short of cruel.

  111. JimmyV1965 says:

    Georges: I still don’t get the top pairing thing, but I’ll stick with there are only 10-15 really, really valuabledefensemen definition.

    A few weeks back I pulled the stats off the NHL site for all defensemen who played at least 20 minutes a game last season. I used simple k-means clustering to separate them into 2 groups. The first group included the top pair guys (Doughty, Suter, Karlsson, etc.).

    Basically, the top pair guys brought more offense, they got PP time, and they took more shots, all of which, as you would imagine, are correlated. Sekera is the only one of our guys who fell into the top cluster. (Klefbom didn’t generate enough offense before he was done for the season.) The nice thing about Nurse is that he likes to shoot, which is a characteristic of top pair guys.

    Most of the scoring edge came from PP time. At even strength, top pair guys produce a point every 3rd game while not top pair guys produce a point roughly every 4th game. Top pair guys get a PP point every 5th game while not top pair guys get no PP production.

    So for Larsson to jump to top pair, he needs PP time. Someone on the Oilers has to decide to give him a chance to set his ceiling at Brent Burns if they haven’t already decided his ceiling is Vlasic. And, by the way, I’m still working through it, but Vlasic (not top-pair by the clustering) is possibly more important to the Sharks than Burns (top pair by the clustering). Vlasic is a very good ceiling.

    I would be absolutely thrilled if Larsson became our version of Vlassic or Hamonic. The trade would still be lopsided but still very beneficial to us. I really like Larsson, but I worry about his footspeed. Can he become an elite defender without great wheels? I’m asking. Is this possible? I really have no idea.

  112. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL:
    Woodguy,

    for sure less than a month ago, and likely 3 weeks, but I’m getting old

    Thanks KO

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