BLUE MONEY

On his first night as an NHL coach, Craig MacTavish ran Tom Poti 27 minutes, Janne Niinimaa 23 minutes and Jason Smith 22 minutes. That trio represented his reliable group, and then he spotted young Eric Brewer (17), Frank Musil (16) and rugged Sean Brown (10 minutes). That group had lost Roman Hamrlik during the summer, he played 24:39 in his final game as an Oiler (playoffs v. Dallas). Igor Ulanov was on that 2000-01 team as well, but it was a group that needed to replace Hamrlik while still dealing with some chaos in the game of puck mover Poti and the rare but real vapor-lock moments of Mr. Niinimaa (who I loved as a player).

Building a defense is very difficult, as the Oilers have proven since 2006 fall. This year, the club appears to have three good ones again, and some real help to deal with the injuries. The defense is still on a journey and cannot boast balance, but you can see there is a plan—and that is progress.

ANDREJ SEKERA

The RE has him surrounded, but it does not tell the story—and that is the case so often with defensemen and boxcars. Sekera has been a terrific defender on top of the offense, and for me the No. 1 defenseman on the team (your mileage may vary). Has played 330 minutes against elite opponents (45.4 Dangerous Fenwick), Corsi for 5×5 is 49.7 overall, 55.6 percent without Kris Russell. Sekera is money.

OSCAR KLEFBOM

RE nailed the Klefbom estimate, but the young man cheated injury and good for him. I like Oscar as the offensive element on a pairing (with Adam Larsson) as opposed to the defensive conscience, as he was with Justin Schultz. It is so good to see a defenseman who Edmonton drafted and developed emerge as a bona fide NHL player. Has played 306 minutes against elite opponents (43.8 Dangerous Fenwick), Corsi for 5×5 is 51.2 overall, 50.5 with Larsson. It has been a fine season for Oscar the Dreamy.

ADAM LARSSON

These defensemen cannot fool the RE, but Larsson is far more than the boxcars. He is the type of player I appreciate, so his improving performance over the year (visually) has been enjoyable to watch. His play in Montreal showcased what he does well, and it has real value. Has played 328 minutes against elite opponents (45.8 Dangerous Fenwick), Corsi for 5×5 is 49.8 overall, 50.5 with Klefbom. He has been effective in helping settle the defense, in my opinion.

MATT BENNING

  • RE: Not projected to play in the NHL this season
  • Actual: 41gp, 2-8-10 (.244)
I didn’t think he would play at all this season in the NHL, but Benning hit the ground running and the record shows just two appearances below the NHL. What a fine young hockey player, and a perfect fit for Edmonton. Mobile, great passer, righthanded and learning more each game. I believe he is the best rookie defenseman signed/developed by Edmonton since Oscar Klefbom, due mostly to his range of skills. Has played 204 minutes against elite opponents (48.3 Dangerous Fenwick) and leads the club with a 53.9 Corsi for 5×5 percentage. He is 58.1 with Andrej Sekera.

DARNELL NURSE

Darnell Nurse was making excellent progress in year two of his NHL career, when an injury cut a big piece of his season away. It is unlikely he will dress for 50 games this season, but there was clear progress and we hope he returns with those wheels and can build on progress. Played 97 minutes against elite competition (50.1 Dangerous Fenwick) and a 53.2 Corsi for 5×5, while boasting a 54.4 possession number with Matt Benning. Oilers will apparently get him back sometime this month.

KRIS RUSSELL

  • RE: Russell was not signed at the time of RE
  • Actual: 47gp, 0-5-5 (.106)
Russell’s signing came late, so I did not project him onto the roster. He has been talked about a lot through the first half of the season, but his lack of offense doesn’t seem to be important. Before signing in Edmonton, Russell averaged 26 points per 82 games. Where are the points? Hmm. We hear rumors of a long-term deal and maybe that happens, but Russell is flagging in a big way offensively. Has played 309 minutes against elite competition (46.3 Dangerous Fenwick) and is 46.2 Corsi for 5×5, 46.1 with Sekera. Todd McLellan likes his speed, but will Peter Chiarelli sign a nine-point defender for $4 million times three?

ERIC GRYBA

  • RE: Gryba was not signed at the time of RE
  • Actual: 26gp, 1-2-3 (.115)
Gryba, like Russell, was a late addition (PTO, then contract) but his number would probably have been something like 50, 1-4-5. I like Gryba, because he can defend, but he also takes penalties and is going to have a helluva time holding back the coming flood of mobiles. He has played 106 minutes against the elites, 48.7 percent Dangerous Fenwick. Corsi for 5×5 is 53.8 and he did most of his beau dommage with Darnell Nurse.

MARK FAYNE

The Oilers may get through the season without using him as a regular. Because I am a bitter, spiteful sort, so hope and pray he gets called up, flourishes, saves the big goal with a great play and the Oilers proceed with him on the RH side. Mark Fayne can help this team.

BRANDON DAVIDSON

He is starting to push at levels we can recognize from a year ago, and that is very encouraging. Has played 78 minutes against elites, sitting at 43.1 Dangerous Fenwick, 48.9 Corsi for 5×5 percentage. I think he is going to be a good defenseman for a long time, hope the Oilers find a way to keep him.

DILLON SIMPSON

Simpson showed well in his first audition and appears to be a player the Oilers can include as a callup option. The best thing for him is that he is not expensive and is a good enough skater.

JORDAN OESTERLE

  • RE: 44gp, 2-6-8 (.182)
  • Actual: 1gp, 0-0-0
Oesterle’s season has included injury and that puts him in a tough spot (and the team too, more below). He looked good in his one game, Oesterle is a player I would like to see signed for next year.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

  • Andrej Sekera—There are four more seasons after this one on Sekera’s contract, if he performs at this level, his contract will be the stuff of legends. Unlikely of course, but this is a terrific year.
  • Oscar Klefbom—Six more years after this one, and his $4.167M cap hit may represent serious value during many of those seasons. Mobile, fairly complete skill set, he is on pace for over 200 shots this season. Klefbom has been lugging the puck more often, and successfully.
  • Adam Larsson—Four more years after this one, at $4.167M cap hit. Larsson isn’t going to score 30 points a year, but he can help defensively and appears to be stepping up over the last 20 games or so. I like this kind of player, so this blog is likely to be supportive. You have been warned.
  • Matt Benning—One more year at $925,000 after this one. I spend much of the spring and summer prattling on about value contracts, well, this is one. We cannot assume next season will be as good, but we can hope. Benning was a perfect fit for need this season and could be a big part of the future.
  • Darnell Nurse—He has one more year on his entry-level deal after this one, but even with bonuses it comes in well below $2M. Nurse has good wheels and an improving defensive resume, but it is important to keep him sheltered and playing third-pairing minutes. I like him a lot, hope they don’t rush him (again).
  • Kris Russell—The Oilers likely want to sign Russell, but cannot sign and protect him in the expansion draft without losing a quality piece. So, they may want to sign him after the expansion draft, but at that point Russell could decide to wait for a full swing at free agency. I don’t think it is a slam dunk he signs here.
  • Eric Gryba—7D and I cannot imagine he returns for another year. I guess there might be an opportunity similar to this past summer, where both sides danced all night but no one else wanted to go home with them. I like this player, don’t know that thee will be room.
  • Mark Fayne—The Oilers will buy him out with extreme prejudice.
  • Brandon Davidson—Injuries derailed his season, shame too because he is/was close to establishing himself as a bona fide top 4D. He makes $1.425M next year, making him a stunning attraction for teams like the Chicago Blackhawks and others who are cap helled. I hope they keep him, but it does not look promising.
  • Dillon Simpson—Showed well in his outings and we will see when he gets his next shot. RFA.
  • Jordan Oesterle—Also RFA, Oesterle probably has some options  should Edmonton walk him, but I bet the two sides get together on a deal.

Jesse Puljujarvi appears to be finding his way now in Bakersfield, he is 2-1-3 in his last two games with nine shots on goal. Puljujarvi played with Anton Lander and Iiro Pakarinen last night, maybe the whole damn line comes up at the same time ala the Michel Riesen—Brian Swanson—Daniel Cleary Bulldogs line 2000 fall.

THANKS

My thanks as always to GMoney and Woodguy for the Woodmoney numbers quoted above. WG has a new post up at his site, and it dovetails nicely with our conversation about defensemen.

EXPANSION TALK

Here is my current view on the protected list:

  • Goal: Cam Talbot
  • Defense: Andrej Sekera, Oscar Klefbom, Adam Larsson
  • Center: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Leon Draisaitl, Mark Letestu
  • Left Wing: Milan Lucic, Patrick Maroon, Jujhar Khaira
  • Right Wing: Jordan Eberle
  • Ineligible for Selection: G Nick Ellis, D Darnell Nurse, D Matt Benning, C Connor McDavid, R Jesse Puljujarvi, C Drake Caggiula, R Anton Slepyshev.
  • Available: D Brandon Davidson, D Griffin Reinhart, L Benoit Pouliot, R Zack Kassian.

We have discussed at length the idea of trading Brandon Davidson and his name appears to be out there. In order for it to make sense, the Oilers would need to acquire a forward who is better than Jujhar Khaira, who I rank as the No. 7 name on the list. I still think Davidson goes for a pick, but we should keep in mind the club could still go 1-4-4 and leave Patrick Maroon or Jordan Eberle unprotected. I doubt it happens, but the wheels have many miles of track to go.

STANDINGS, THIS MORNING

This is a good news table for Edmonton. The week off is going very well so far, with the LAK losing two in a row and the Anaheim Ducks unable to break away. The Sharks are grabbing some clearance, and the Flames are still hanging around. The Canucks may be done for good this time, their recent losing streak putting them in the ditch again. It is fun to look at the standings these days, I always start from the bottom because 10 years, but it also feels good to find the Oilers logo beside a playoff spot.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Something of a moving target this morning, a few irons in the fire and we will see when we see. 10 this morning, TSN1260, scheduled to appear:

  • Darcy McLeod, Because Oilers. Brandon Davidson trade value, Kris Russell in free agency, and we will drill down on WGs latest article.
  • Frank Seravalli, TSN. The trade deadline ranker is moving every day now, are the Oilers in on Shattenkirk? What about Duchene?

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

 

 

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141 Responses to "BLUE MONEY"

  1. jonrmcleod says:

    *****SPAM ALERT*****

    If anyone’s interested, I did a Q&A with Woodguy on the topic of WoodMoney.

    http://www.theoilersrig.com/2017/02/stat-week-mo-woodmoney-mo-answers/

  2. npanciroli says:

    “Kris Russell—but at that point Russell could decide to wait for a full swing at free agency. I don’t think it is a slam dunk he signs here.”

    LT, don’t get my hopes up.

    I know you like Fayne a lot (I think he is NHL quality as well) and I think you are better off running him over Russell next year.

    Klefbom Larsson
    Sekera Benning
    Nurse Davidson/Fayne

    This is without possible grabbing a even better RHD PP specialist.

    I think a lot of people here convinced me to hold Davidson and see what happens for expansion.

  3. Clarkenstein says:

    What if you left Lucic unprotected and kept Davidson? Is that possible or does an NTC mean you have to protect the player? If not, who is going to take Lucic with that contract? Or even Eberle for that matter for the same reasons.

  4. Lowetide says:

    jonrmcleod:
    *****SPAM ALERT*****

    If anyone’s interested, I did a Q&A with Woodguy on the topic of WoodMoney.

    http://www.theoilersrig.com/2017/02/stat-week-mo-woodmoney-mo-answers/

    Great interview, Jon.

  5. Jethro Tull says:

    LT, put the Fayne down, nice and gentle. Back away from the Fayne.

    Put it this way: If Fayne is the player you think he is, then Chia wouldn’t have traded a King for his replacement.

    *Please note i didn’t mention Hall for Larss…..d’oh!*

  6. frjohnk says:

    A few things

    WG- Great work as always. I have been waiting for Russell to put some points up on the board. He has a history of getting a decent amount of points plus he plays a fair bit with McDavid. But its been crickets all year.

    When is the buyout period and how does that affect the expansion draft? If the Oilers trade Davidson, they will need to have Fayne to be the Dman to expose for expansion.

    Duchene? If you could get him without paying with a core impact player moving forward, yes!!!! But that is not going to happen.

  7. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    LT,
    What do you make then of PC’s recent praise for Reinhart? Just talk? Because if you trade Davidson for a forward and go 7-3-1 you get a forward but give up Davidson and lose Reinhart, too.

    To me 4-4-1 and protecting Davidson makes sense.

    If we read the tea leaves though, maybe we are going to see 4-4-1 with a decision made to keep Reinhart over Davidson and a pick or rental coming back for Davidson.

    We wait. I would prefer they simply stay the course. If they are to make a trade it should be a hockey decision for now and the future. Trading to avoid the expansion draft is folly (news flash: you are going to lose one player you hate to lose no matter what you do). Only way a trade makes sense is if you are getting a high end exempt status asset back. i.e. 1st round pick or young player not needing to be protected. But what team is going to give us that? This year they are worth too much.

  8. Ducey says:

    Very impressed with the defense.

    The top 5 of Sekera, Klefbom, Larsson, Benning, and Nurse is a terrific base. The turn around in one year has been amazing.

    We spend a lot of time worrying about the rest (Fayne, Davidson, Russell, Oesterle, Simpson, Reinhart) but the reality is with that core of 5, they can always find another 2 to fill out the rotation.

    If Davidson gets picked in expansion, I would be happy with Oesterle and a vet* as the 6/7 D next year.

    With Jones and Bear coming, it should be a strength for some time.

    *maybe Gryba, but the reality is that its a buyers market for older D men with some tread left in August.

  9. frjohnk says:

    Clarkenstein:
    What if you left Lucic unprotected and kept Davidson? Is that possible or does an NTC meanyou have to protect the player? If not, who is going to take Lucic with that contract?Or even Eberle for that matter for the same reasons.

    Lucic has a NMC

  10. Melman says:

    The goofiest thing they could do is sign Russell before the expansion draft. Do the wink wink handshake and if LV throws him more $ than they are willing to pay him, then good for Kris. He has been good overall this year and things would have been a mess without him, but it’s not worth allocating a protected spot for him. Because this is obvious, Chia must know it too. Because Oilers, I’m still nervous that they’ll do it anyway. It takes a while for the sting from 10 years of face palms to go away.

  11. bendelson says:

    Outside of those that are still struggling with ‘the trade’, is there really a lot of negative push-back regarding Larsson? Clearly, a reliable, tough to play against, 20+ min/night, right shot dman has significant value on this team. Right? RIGHT?

  12. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    P.S. Niinimaa, Smith, Poti. Terrific! Too bad about Poti…Oiler fans and soft puck movers have a checkered past.

    Hamrlik was amazing, too. Seemed to never get enough due as he had a bit of riverboat gambler in him at times (a la Mironov).

    Brewer was good but I always felt he was a tad overrated by fans after he made Team Canada. Terrific skater, yes, but I would have said a 2nd pair D on a good team. A little bit like Petry in that regard. D’oh!!

  13. bendelson says:

    WG: If Klefbom is dreamy (and my wife insists he is…), then what adjective are we using to describe Benning? He sure keeps showing up in nice places… Please advise.

  14. frjohnk says:

    bendelson: is there really a lot of negative push-back regarding Larsson? Clearly, a reliable, tough to play against, 20+ min/night, right shot dman has significant value on this team. Right? RIGHT?

    I think most Oiler fans like Larsson. Watch for him to improve this year and next year as he gets more used to this system. I wished we played the Flames a few more times this year, to watch Larsson paste Flames against the boards.

  15. dustrock says:

    bendelson:
    Outside of those that are still struggling with ‘the trade’, is there really a lot of negative push-back regarding Larsson? Clearly, a reliable, tough to play against, 20+ min/night, right shot dman has significant value on this team.Right?RIGHT?

    Oh, i think there`s many, many OIlers fans who see the Oilers in the playoffs at February 9th and think “great trade”.

    Causation? Probably not. Correlation? I have no idea.

    I liked Larsson on the Devils and I thought he would immediately improve the D.

    But the cost.

    The song remains the same.

  16. Lloyd B. says:

    bendelson:
    Outside of those that are still struggling with ‘the trade’, is there really a lot of negative push-back regarding Larsson? Clearly, a reliable, tough to play against, 20+ min/night, right shot dman has significant value on this team.Right?RIGHT?

    Right. If he Oilers get one more just like him on the right side for the same money and the defense is set for years.

    3 sets of 2nd pair defencemen. On any given night one of the 3 pairs is going to play like a # 1. Perfect.

    Flip side of course is on any given night one of the pairs is going to play like a 3rd. That’s OK.

    Of course, we have it on good authority that you can’t pay all your defensemen $4M a year.

  17. dustrock says:

    Speaking of Larsson,

    Woodguy I hate to throw more work at you. Is there a way to run Larsson’s numbers since December 1st?

    By eye, he’s been much improved since then. Just wonder if the WoodMoneys show similar.

  18. Dominoiler says:

    Thanks for linking to the woodguy article, LT.. it was an interesting way to break down the d-pairs and give us even more to chew on..

    One thing, the average lines looked off at times.. caggs goals against line, for example, doesn’t look like the average for the displayed pairs.. maybe averages should be calculated from the data set, not possibly driven up or down by the small samples that were excluded.. just an idea, but could give true’er comparables.. also, the summation of helps / hurts makes sense on one level, to me, but how much one helps compared to hurting (gf%/60) rather than a binary help out hurry..

    Either way, thanks for providing another way for us to see the splits.. LT does such a great job day to day, then this helps us all dive deeper.. many thanks to all the contributors..

  19. npanciroli says:

    I also think If Lucic/RNH/Eberle were performing at their usual rates – people would be missing Hall less. Trade easily balances the team and Larsson is amazing. I think Larsson goes beyond what analytics show as far as calming the D core down and making forwards play differently since he is so punishing in the D zone.

  20. JDï™ says:

    bendelson: then what adjective are we using to describe Benning?

    Supportive?

  21. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    *****SPAM*****

    New Because Oilers:

    A look at the 8 most common D-pairs and their goal for/against results with the 5 main centers.

    No shot data used at all!! I promise!!!

    http://becauseoilers.blogspot.ca/2017/02/a-look-at-how-oilers-d-pairs-have-done.html

    *****END SPAM*****

    Brush up on my latest piece before I go on LT’s show.

    There will be a test at the end that counts towards your final mark.

  22. Truth says:

    Melman:
    The goofiest thing they could do is sign Russell before the expansion draft.

    I’m of the opposite position, mostly because I think signing Russel will be a mistake. My dream scenario is that , if it is a given the Oilers sign him, they do it prior to the expansion draft and he gets picked by Vegas, thereby protecting Davidson, Khaira, Pitlick, and the rest.

  23. knighttown says:

    Not accepting the Subban trade was a tell imo. Chiarelli is very worried about the McDavid contract and ranks “value” at the top of his list when assessing players, which is pretty smart. Having that base of 6 D (Sekera, Klefbom, Larsson, Nurse, Benning, Davidson) signed for well under 20 million allows you do so much with the forwards.

    Things like giving Lucic 6 million x forever but I digress.

  24. marchmentsknee says:

    LT, ” I still think Davidson goes for a pick, but we should keep in mind the club could still go 1-4-4 and leave Patrick Maroon or Jordan Eberle unprotected.”

    I’m not sure the logic in trading Davidson for a pick. The farm system is thin and we lose an NHL caliber player in the expansion draft. We could lose more like Russell as UFA’s. For those willing to trade Davidson in hopes of just getting something in return, how does it make sense to lose multiple players off the roster for next year? The UFA crop is thin and overpriced. I’ve heard LT use the term “keep the powder dry”. Our two best players are 20 and 21. I believe if any trades are made then it’s of necessity to receive more players in return. As example, if we trade Ebs then we should receive a quality NHLer and another player who may be attractive in the draft. I’m using Eberle only to make a point. I don’t need to hear how his contract sucks and he’s untrade-able. Thoughts?

  25. frjohnk says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Brush up on my latest piece before I go on LT’s show.

    There will be a test at the end that counts towards your final mark.

    I saw the test already

    Just for those wondering the answer to the bonus question is ” Russell is dreamy”

    EDIT: Oops, my bad, that’s the bonus answer for the Spector quiz.

  26. Professor Q says:

    Is Anaheim in second due to beating Edmonton or something? They seem lesser in all accounts…

  27. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    bendelson:
    WG:If Klefbom is dreamy (and my wife insists he is…), then what adjective are we using to describe Benning?He sure keeps showing up in nice places… Please advise.

    Not sure.

    “Real, and spectacular” would be correct.

    He’s also the RHD that everyone thinks the Oilers need to trade for.

    Not sure on a one word description.

  28. npanciroli says:

    Professor Q,

    I was looking earlier i think ROW?

  29. marchmentsknee says:

    I’d like people to know that I hosted a SuperBowl party in Atlanta on Sunday. By the 3rd quarter it was a celebration. Couples were kissing, plans were being made for the parade, drinks were being had. What I witnessed was a sports tragedy that will never be recovered from until the Falcons win a Bowl. Gut Punch!

    On that note, Pat Maroon’s contract looks to me like a typical sell high deal for Belichick. Possibly the highest trade value among the untouchables.

  30. Professor Q says:

    npanciroli,

    Ah, okay. I didn’t know what that ROW row meant. Regulation-Time wins. Odd that they would not take Edmonton’s Game In Hand and less OT Losses into consideration first.

  31. Truth says:

    npanciroli,

    Yep, regulation and overtime wins. It would be so much clearer if the league used the more accurate scoring system of each game being worth 3 points, not just overtime and shootout games.

  32. npanciroli says:

    Truth,

    It’s funny how “Bettman points” is a thing for everyone to make fun of since everyone and their sister knows a 3 point system is better.

  33. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    WC standings as of this morning using games. 8th place set to 0, ties broken with pts% (games in hand)

    MIN 19
    SJS 12
    CHI 12
    EDM 7
    ANA 7
    NSH 3
    STL 1
    LAK 0
    ———————–
    CGY -1
    VAN -5
    WPG -6
    DAL -6
    ARI -15
    COL -22

    Games of note tonight:

    SJS – BOS will the Bruins get the “new coach bounce”? I hope so
    ANA – BUF BUF is no longer a pushover. Injury luck hurt them this year. Coming around.
    NSH – NYR – This is probably a fun game to watch
    VAN – CBJ – Should be a walk for CBJ
    STL – TOR – No clue who wins this. Probably bet the over
    DAL – OTT – I’d bet on OTT’s free fall to continue
    LAK – FLA – FLA is my favorite darkhorse. C’MON COMPUTER BOYS!!!
    PIT- COL – COL stopped allowing goals when Barrie got hurt, but PIT scores on everyone
    MTL – ARI – MTL is sliding, Would love to see them lose to Dogs.

  34. Lloyd B. says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Not sure.

    “Real, and spectacular” would be correct.

    He’s also the RHD that everyone thinks the Oilers need to trade for.

    Not sure on a one word description.

    Benning is coming along nicely.

    Hope they keep introducing him to added responsibility responsibly.

    A little 2nd pair competition here a wee bit of 1st there. A bit of time on the 2nd PP every once and a while.

    No need to rush to put him in over his head.

    Lets not project him as a 2nd pair, 1PP guy just yet. Imagine the whinging coming from these parts if that is where he was playing consistently now.

    Good arrows so far. Great arrows.

  35. Clarkenstein says:

    frjohnk: Lucic has a NMC

    Assumed that but what if a team has more NMC’s than protected players? Doubt anybody does but what happens then?

  36. frjohnk says:

    marchmentsknee: I’m not sure the logic in trading Davidson for a pick.

    Id trade picks to get NHL players, so when we lose whoever to expansion, the hit is not so bad as we have more NHL players to fill in the loss.

    And Im not sure Davidson has much value at the moment.
    -He has a small sample size for other teams to look at. ( 72 NHL games)
    – Has had injury trouble.
    -And most teams would not put him on their protected list.

    I would not trade him for a pick, Id rather keep him.

  37. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Truth:
    npanciroli,

    Yep, regulation and overtime wins.It would be so much clearer if the league used the more accurate scoring system of each game being worth 3 points, not just overtime and shootout games.

    Yeah the NHL even fucked up the tie-breaker system, due to their standard approach of putting a bandaid on a bandaid. An overtime win is treated the same as a regulation win for tie-breaker purposes, even though it is clearly inferior in the current points system due to allowing the opposition a point. A tie-breaker based on Regulation Wins only would be more logical. That said, when it comes to the NHL and logic, I am constantly reminded of the great Rita Mae Brown quote, “if the world were a logical place, men would ride side saddle.”

  38. Pink Socks says:

    Bear + Jones + Paigin all will/should be in the AHL next fall. Since I have supported PC in his moves, including the one I won’t mention, I’m going to just have faith and believe that he doesn’t do anything stupid with Russell. He has been a great stopgap this year, I just don’t think he is necessary moving forward.

    Sure maybe Reinhart and/or Davidson are lost via trade or to LV. I assume, if still here, Reinhart gets a cheap one way one or two year deal. From Musil, Oesterle, and Simpson, most likely only 2 stick around through next year.

    Jones – Bear
    Paigin – Oesterle
    Lagesson – Musil
    Betker – Fraser-type vet

    Pretty solid AHL D, still too many lefties, but most importantly, loads of potential. Oesterle/Musil gets the first call next year. This is a major area of strength moving forward. Any one of the lefties could be used as trade bait, or could emerge as an NHL player.

    So that being said, why Russell? Why is he necessary? His salary, plus Hendricks and Gryba all are enough for Leon’s new paperwork in the summer, and there is plenty left over to sign the unknown RH PP guy for the NHL team.

  39. marchmentsknee says:

    frjohnk,

    What do they say, great minds think alike? Let’s pat each other on the back.

    I would happily give up our first or third rounders for NHL players – edit – NHL players under contract.

  40. Clay says:

    This is a serious question, and I’ve been wondering about it for a while. I would be interested in hearing opinions on it.

    Does McPhee, maybe more than other GM’s, take into account a player’s past troubles with addiction / substance abuse? I don’t mean to belittle or trivialize the issue, but as the GM of a pro team in Vegas, do you worry about this sort of thing more than the “normal” amount?

  41. Truth says:

    Bruce McCurdy: That said, when it comes to the NHL and logic, I am constantly reminded of the great Rita Mae Brown quote, “if the world were a logical place, men would ride side saddle.”

    Lol.

  42. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Lloyd B.: Benning is coming along nicely.

    Hope they keep introducing him to added responsibility responsibly.

    A little 2nd pair competition here a wee bit of 1st there.A bit of time on the 2nd PP every once and a while.

    No need to rush to put him in over his head.

    Lets not project him as a 2nd pair, 1PP guy just yet. Imagine the whinging coming from these parts if that is where he was playing consistently now.

    Good arrows so far. Great arrows.

    Read my post.

    He’s already getting the same QoC as the “top four”

    He’s achieving it already.

  43. Professor Q says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    I don’t get it though. Edmonton has a game in hand and less OT Losses, plus greater stats everywhere else.

  44. Professor Q says:

    Pink Socks,

    Solid D-Corps indeed. Depending on if they’re played or not. Veterans might take precedence since we’re talking about Edmonton.

  45. N64 says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: What do you make then of PC’s recent praise for Reinhart? Just talk? Because if you trade Davidson for a forward and go 7-3-1 you get a forward but give up Davidson and lose Reinhart, too.
    To me 4-4-1 and protecting Davidson makes sense.

    The value of a pair of exposed players at the draft is the value of the weaker one. If they have equal value they are worth N before the draft and 2N after. If one has have value they are work 0.5N before and 1.5N afterwards.

    So if the value of Davidson and Reinhart is similar they have the most value on the same roster. Makes no sense to split them up before the draft. Whoever has both is guaranteed to retain one of them.

    ~ Adding up all of the tells. They want a top 4 right D. Eberle and Davidson are being marketed. Praising Griff. So obviously Eberle + Davey + Griff for the Right D and then 4-4-1. ~

  46. N64 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yeah the NHL even fucked up the tie-breaker system, due to their standard approach of putting a bandaid on a bandaid. An overtime win is treated the same as a regulation win for tie-breaker purposes, even though it is clearly inferior in the current points system due to allowing the opposition a point. A tie-breaker based on Regulation Wins only would be more logical. That said, when it comes to the NHL and logic, I am constantly reminded of the great Rita Mae Brown quote, “if the world were a logical place, men would ride side saddle.”

    Wonder if this would ever get through: 10 minutes of overtime and no points to the loser and then 1 pt each for the tie. No shootout.

  47. Professor Q says:

    N64: Wonder if this would ever get through: 10 minutes of overtime and no points to the loser and then 1 pt each for the tie. No shootout.

    4 on 4, then 3 on 3, then Tie?

  48. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: Great interview, Jon.

    Great interview, Jon and Darcy.

  49. Bruce McCurdy says:

    N64: Wonder if this would ever get through: 10 minutes of overtime and no points to the loser and then 1 pt each for the tie. No shootout.

    That’s the old WHA rule & it worked fine. Then again, I am a 20th Century Schizoid Man who believes that a tie is a fair and honorable result.

  50. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Professor Q:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    I don’t get it though. Edmonton has a game in hand and less OT Losses, plus greater stats everywhere else.

    The #1 tiebreaker is regulation & overtime wins, brought in when the league wanted to resolve fewer games in the shootout. (That they did so by incentivizing overtime but Not regulation time speaks to the backwards thinking that is endemic to the stewards of the game.)

    If the season ended today it would be Edmonton at Anaheim in the playoffs.

  51. frjohnk says:

    Bruce McCurdy: That’s the old WHA rule & it worked fine. Then again, I am a 20th Century Schizoid Man who believes that a tie is a fair and honorable result.

    This would make 3rd periods more wide open

    Reg win 3 points, 0 points to looser
    OT win 2 points, 0 points to looser
    shootout win 1 point, 0 points to looser

  52. npanciroli says:

    When Benning is back I want to see:

    Klefbom – Larsson
    Sekera – Benning

    And I want to see them get even heavier even strength minutes.

  53. Lloyd B. says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Read my post.

    He’s already getting the same QoC as the “top four”

    He’s achieving it already.

    I did read it. Very good and yes he is achieving it.

    All I’m saying is I’m glad they are spoon feeding him rather than throwing him in the deep end and keeping him there.

  54. russ99 says:

    If we’re talking offense only when it comes to the defensemen, that’s only half the equation, and many would consider that the lesser half.

    Especially those of us sick of our defensemen being hung out to dry by cherry-picking forwards and suspect goaltenders and overwhelmed in our zone the last 10 years.

    This is one of my biggest complaints about Oilers fans in general, and in specific about the scapegoating of Kris Russell, and to a lesser extent (at least last year) Fayne.

    Since numbers plays a part in the psyche of this blog, I’d love to see more HDSC against thrown out there, so at least defense is part of the discussion.

    Woodguy, your post yesterday was a balanced breath of fresh air.

  55. Bag of Pucks says:

    Clarkenstein:
    What if you left Lucic unprotected and kept Davidson? Is that possible or does an NTC meanyou have to protect the player? If not, who is going to take Lucic with that contract?Or even Eberle for that matter for the same reasons.

    I floated the possibility of not protecting Eberle in the expansion draft a couple weeks back. As you would expect, it’s not a popular suggestion in these parts. But it may have some legs.

    The crux is whether he’s currently untradeable or not. If, as was rumoured, Chia shopped him and every GM in the league shied away because they don’t perceive the player as a value contract, then Vegas may be the only market willing to take on the contract (as presumably they’ll be desperate for scoring and/or a potential ‘name players’ as gate attractions). Conversely, if he still has trade value and it’s just a case of Chiarelli waiting on the right asset(s) coming back, then by all means, he should be protected. Because we’re not privy to that information, it should thus be a considered possibility until we learn otherwise.

    The hysteria this causes in the Oilogosphere is always the misperception that you’re losing Eberle (and his production) for nothing. But the reality is, if this season is the trend, you’re overpaying for that production. Yes, you lose the player, but you gain valuable cap space. And that is a significant asset.

    And, if in fact, his contract is seen as a millstone within the GM community, you free up a valuable slot on your protected list by exposing a player unlikely to be claimed.

    Eberle’s salary is only tenable if he’s deemed essential to the core. Is he now? I’m not sure, but I would suggest one of the key criterion in being deemed part of the F core should be, are you a legitimate outscorer against the toughs? Those are the players who should get the big money. Paying complimentary players a significant portion of your cap is likely untenable longterm.

  56. npanciroli says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Really interesting idea and I prefer losing a forward to any defence.

    I think it’s hard for us due to our lack of RW depth. Without any adds you roll next year with:

    Puljujarvi
    Pitlick
    Slepyshev
    Kassian

    as your natural RWs.

  57. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yeah the NHL even fucked up the tie-breaker system, due to their standard approach of putting a bandaid on a bandaid. An overtime win is treated the same as a regulation win for tie-breaker purposes, even though it is clearly inferior in the current points system due to allowing the opposition a point. A tie-breaker based on Regulation Wins only would be more logical. That said, when it comes to the NHL and logic, I am constantly reminded of the great Rita Mae Brown quote, “if the world were a logical place, men would ride side saddle.”

    Just like to interject, Bruce. I believe changing the points format to something akin to soccer whereas 3pts for a win and 1 for a draw brings it’s own problems.

    In soccer, away teams are sometimes perfectly happy to play for a draw. For instance, say you are West Ham away to Chelsea. You’re a shitty team, but there are no discernible advantages to playing at home in soccer, other than the travel and fan attendance. However, a whole betting system is in place in the UK to predict draws:https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Football_pools which suggests there is something there. Now imagine Colorado @ Pittsburgh in hockey where you DO get discernible advantages for being the home team. Hello five guys behind the puck and grab the ‘away point’.

    Going back to my soccer analogy, West Ham is clearly the weaker team, and it will have been deemed a worthy result to ‘earn’ a draw away to Chelsea. Soccer doesn’t enjoy the same amount of parity as the NHL, but you WILL start to see weaker teams purposely play defensive hockey on the road, more so than now.

    Rugby Union tackles (ha!) it differently, after the horrible low scoring stalemates of the 90s. In the Aviva Premiership in England, you get 4 points for a win, 2 for a draw, 0 for a loss, but if you lose by 7 tries (touchdowns) you lose a point, or if you win by 4 tries, you get awarded a point. Reward excellence, punish mediocrity.

    I would like to see a bastardised form of the above: Maybe (just spitballing here) 3pts for a win, 0 for a loss, 1pt for a draw, lose by 5 goals, lose a point, win by 5 gain a point.

    Just for starters. Thoughts?

  58. Bruce McCurdy says:

    frjohnk: This would make 3rd periods more wide open

    Reg win 3 points, 0 points to looser
    OT win 2 points, 0 points to looser
    shootout win 1 point, 0 points to looser

    No no no. Just make all games worth the same and the problem is solved. 3-0 for regulation results, 2-1 for gimmick time.

  59. N64 says:

    Professor Q: 4 on 4, then 3 on 3, then Tie?

    With 10 minutes you could change side halfway through and that would give the option of all 3 on 3 or as you say 4 on 4 and then 3 on 3. And yes tie at the end. Split the 2 points after 70 mins.

    Bruce, Thanks for pointing out the WHA played 70 mins before tie games. Back to the future. For non-medal games we hope the World Junior moves in the right direction with ties after overtime. If only the NHL would follow.

  60. Jethro Tull says:

    Bag of Pucks: I floated the possibility of not protecting Eberle in the expansion draft a couple weeks back. As you would expect, it’s not a popular suggestion in these parts. But it may have some legs.

    I suggested the same, citing the growing inmportance of cap flexibility as my main reason.

    Also, McPhee has also stated he wouldn’t be taking on anyone’s lemon contracts.

    All depends: Do we bet that Ebs regresses to the meat, or do we say “what have you done for me lately?”

  61. Bruce McCurdy says:

    N64:

    Bruce, Thanks for pointing out the WHA played 70 mins before tie games.

    The WHA was ahead of its time. It had regular season overtime for its entire existence 1972-79. NHL finally reinstated the 5-minute version in 1983-84.

  62. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Jethro Tull: McPhee has also stated he wouldn’t be taking on anyone’s lemon contracts.

    1. McPhee: states he won’t be taking on anyone’s lemon contracts.
    2. Other GMs: take McPhee at his word, expose expensive veterans.
    3. McPhee: *rubs hand together…

  63. Bag of Pucks says:

    Jethro Tull: I suggested the same, citing the growing inmportance of cap flexibility as my main reason.

    Also, McPhee has also stated he wouldn’t be taking on anyone’s lemon contracts.

    All depends:Do we bet that Ebs regresses to the meat, or do we say “what have you done for me lately?”

    My concerns with the ‘regress to the meat’ wishful thinking is I suspect his offensive downturn is partly due to the fact that he’s been forced to be more defensively responsible under MacLellan. Unfortunately, cheating for O and playing on the wrong side of the puck had become a big part of Eberle’s game under previous regimes.

    Absolutely, he could return to the mean, but are you happy with that if that means him also returning to giving up as much or more the other way?

  64. russ99 says:

    N64: With 10 minutes you could change side halfway through and that would give the option of all 3 on 3 or as you say 4 on 4 and then 3 on 3. And yes tie at the end. Split the 2 points after 70 mins.

    Bruce, Thanks for pointing out the WHA played 70 mins before tie games. Back to the future. For non-medal games we hope the World Junior moves in the right direction with ties after overtime. If only the NHL would follow.

    Not a fan of 3 on 3, Going with 4 on 4 for 10 minute periods should do it, would be rare to get to a second period.

    Plus that would be a lot more fun to watch than shootouts.

  65. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce McCurdy: 1. McPhee: states he won’t be taking on anyone’s lemon contracts.
    2. Other GMs: take McPhee at his word, expose expensive veterans.
    3. McPhee: *rubs hand together…

    4. Learns valuable lesson the Oilers spent 10yrs learning.
    5. Remembers he is also constrained by the salary cap.

  66. stush18 says:

    Ducey:
    Very impressed with the defense.

    The top 5 of Sekera, Klefbom, Larsson, Benning, and Nurse is a terrific base. The turn around in one year has been amazing.

    We spend a lot of time worrying about the rest (Fayne, Davidson, Russell, Oesterle, Simpson, Reinhart) but the reality is with that core of 5, they can always find another 2 to fill out the rotation.

    If Davidson gets picked in expansion, I would be happy with Oesterle and a vet* as the 6/7 D next year.

    With Jones and Bear coming, it should be a strength for some time.

    *maybe Gryba, but the reality is that its a buyers market for older D men with some tread left in August.

    I’m prolly one of the few, but I’d love to have gryba back as a 6/7. He’s killing it at that spot as long as he plays with a mobile defender.

  67. Professor Q says:

    Jethro Tull: 4. Learns valuable lesson the Oilers spent 10yrs learning.
    5. Remembers he is also constrained by the salary cap.

    Unfortunately he does indeed have to reach a certain threshold, though. He NEEDS some inflated contracts.

    One of the limitations of expansion stipulations.

    And they can’t be NMC or NTC contracts.

  68. Offside says:

    bendelson:
    Outside of those that are still struggling with ‘the trade’, is there really a lot of negative push-back regarding Larsson? Clearly, a reliable, tough to play against, 20+ min/night, right shot dman has significant value on this team.Right?RIGHT?

    The fact that so many appreciate what Larrson brings despite the cost to get him is a) a testimony to just how good he really is and b) a testimony to how rational Oiler fans can be

  69. Bag of Pucks says:

    npanciroli:
    Bag of Pucks,

    Really interesting idea and I prefer losing a forward to any defence.

    I think it’s hard for us due to our lack of RW depth. Without any adds you roll next year with:

    Puljujarvi
    Pitlick
    Slepyshev
    Kassian

    as your natural RWs.

    I would think part of letting him go assumes Chiarelli would re-allocate some of that cap space to a replacement. That said, I don’t hate that depth chart. There’s a lot of potential value contracts there if Puli, Pitlick and Sleppy all elevate and show some sustain.

    In terms of replacing Eberle’s production, here’s some players with similar goal totals this season: Mantha, Rust, Connor Brown, Rieder, Connolly, Stempniak, Versteeg.

    Lots of variation in that list: drafted and developed internally, picked off the waiver wire, reclamation projects, free agents, etc. Most importantly, none of them costing $6mil per.

    In short, if Eberle’s current production is the new normal, you can find players to replace that output in any number of directions.

  70. adamjames says:

    Benning has had a phenomenal start to his pro career. My question is, why did he come out of college with such little fanfare? All of his scouting reports out of college pretty much cover what we’ve seen; physicality, servicable puck moving and good defensively.

    I also seem to recall the general consensus around the time of his signing being that he would have bottom pair upside, never a mention of the top 4 potential.

    Sort of reminds me of when Petry broke in. A multi tool defender seems to get little respect in the big hockey media.

  71. Bruce Wayne says:

    Jethro Tull,

    The example of soccer is a strong point in favour of changing the system. Going to the 3 point system has reduced the number of teams playing for a draw, and has increased scoring.

    This is to be expected as the incentives of the scoring system clearly reward teams that try and score, while the NHL system clearly rewards teams that don’t try and score.

  72. Professor Q says:

    adamjames:
    Benning has had a phenomenal start to his pro career. My question is, why did he come out of college with such little fanfare? All of his scouting reports out of college pretty much cover what we’ve seen; physicality, servicable puck moving and good defensively.

    I also seem to recall the general consensus around the time of his signing being that he would have bottom pair upside, never a mention of the top 4 potential.

    Sort of reminds me of when Petry broke in. A multi tool defender seems to get little respect in the big hockey media.

    I think you’d be surprised if you read these…

    https://scoutingpost.com/2016/06/11/bruins-prospects-in-their-draft-years-2010-2012/

    http://www.hockeysfuture.com/prospects/matt-benning/

    http://oilersnation.com/2016/8/20/who-in-the-world-of-sports-is-matt-benning

  73. Ducey says:

    Bag of Pucks: I floated the possibility of not protecting Eberle in the expansion draft a couple weeks back. As you would expect, it’s not a popular suggestion in these parts. But it may have some legs.

    The crux is whether he’s currently untradeable or not. If, as was rumoured, Chia shopped him and every GM in the league shied away because they don’t perceive the player as a value contract, then Vegas may be the only market willing to take on the contract (as presumably they’ll be desperate for scoring and/or a potential ‘name players’ as gate attractions). Conversely, if he still has trade value and it’s just a case of Chiarelli waiting on the right asset(s) coming back, then by all means, he should be protected. Because we’re not privy to that information, it should thus be a considered possibility until we learn otherwise.

    The hysteria this causes in the Oilogosphere is always the misperception that you’re losing Eberle (and his production) for nothing. But the reality is, if this season is the trend, you’re overpaying for that production. Yes, you lose the player, but you gain valuable cap space. And that is a significant asset.

    And, if in fact, his contract is seen as a millstone within the GM community, you free up a valuable slot on your protected list by exposing a player unlikely to be claimed.

    Eberle’s salary is only tenable if he’s deemed essential to the core. Is he now? I’m not sure, but I would suggest one of the key criterion in being deemed part of the F core should be, are you a legitimate outscorer against the toughs? Those are the players who should get the big money. Paying complimentary players a significant portion of your cap is likely untenable longterm.

    Chia was no doubt shopping Eberle for his defense fix. But to say that because he didn’t trade him means he has no value is likely inaccurate. Chia just couldn’t get the top end guy he was looking for in return.

    Eberle is worth more than nothing.

    LV isn’t going to take a Dustin Brown contract. They will take Eberle. They have lots of cap room and Eberle has a history of putting up offense.

    When LV takes Eberle, suddenly people will start looking around saying, “man, EDM doesn’t have many skilled wingers”. To be honest I am kind of saying that right now. And its not like they can go get an affordable one for free. Cap space is only useful if you can fill it.

    Not protecting Eberle would be trying to be too cute by half

    .

  74. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    N64,

    But you are N64 and that is worth 32 times more than 2N.

    😉

    Essentially we agree. I was indicating that I do not agree with the plan management seems to have hatched to trade Davidson for fear of losing him. That reasoning makes no sense to me or most others.

    On your 3-for-1 unicorns trade how about..

    If Eberle-Reinhart-Davidson-1st gets Duchene and Barrie the 4-4-1 becomes:
    Duchene, Drai, Nuge, Lucic
    Sekera Klefbom Barrie Larsson
    Talbot

    Duchene-McDavid-Puljujarvi

    Edit- this was a dumb post from the start. Ignore me.

  75. Bag of Pucks says:

    Ducey: Chia was no doubt shopping Eberle for his defense fix. But to say that because he didn’t trade him means he has no value is likely inaccurate. Chia just couldn’t get the top end guy he was looking for in return.

    Yes, I acknowledged both of these possibilities in my post. And said, if in fact, he still has trade cache: they should protect him. We simply don’t have the intel on that one way or the other.

  76. LadiesloveSmid says:

    NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker",

    so you expose Larsson?

  77. vinotintazo says:

    NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker":
    N64,

    But you are N64 and that is worth 32 times more than 2N.

    Essentially we agree. I was indicating that I do not agree with the plan management seems to have hatched to trade Davidson for fear of losing him. That reasoning makes no sense to me or most others.

    On your 3-for-1 unicorns trade how about..

    If Eberle-Reinhart-Davidson-1st gets Duchene and Barriie the 7-3-1 becomes:
    Duchene, Drai, Nuge, Lucic, Maroon, Khaira, Letestu (because I think you can risk Vegas won’t pick ZK with his history(
    Sekera Klefbom Barrie
    Talbot

    One can dream.

    I know Duchene is a left shot again but for forwards it matters less…

    Duchene-McDavid-Puljujarvi
    Drool

    that would mean Col goes 4-4-1 ? so they can protect davidson and reinhart. What a loop-sided deal for the Oil.

    Who knows they gave away O’Rielly lol

  78. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    vinotintazo,

    Yeah, obviously it was tongue-in-cheek wish list stuff.

    Still think the point of having both Davidson and Reinhart is you lose one, keep the other. Trading one to get a forward, going 7-3-1 then still losing the other makes no sense to me. Unless the forward is a really good player.

  79. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    LadiesloveSmid,

    Oops. brain fart. I meant 4-4-1. thought something was off.

    I will stop posting. My brain is not functioning today.

  80. Professor Q says:

    Now just think of the brain-churning that will occur during the next expansion…

  81. LadiesloveSmid says:

    NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker":
    LadiesloveSmid,

    Oops. brain fart. I meant 4-4-1. thought something was off.

    I will stop posting. My brain is not functioning today.

    I would like that if they’re sold on trading Eberle. Think it would be a big mistake. All he is missing is SH%

  82. N64 says:

    NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: Still think the point of having both Davidson and Reinhart is you lose one, keep the other.

    Exactly. You keep both, you Vegas gets one. You trade both to a team that won’t protect them and Vegas gets one. Bottom line is that together they have half value until expansion. Worst scenario is to separate them because they both lose their value.

    LT could devote a whole show to Bruce eviscerating the logic of moving Davidson to avoid Vegas getting him. But the CRTC might object.

  83. Professor Q says:

    N64,

    Unless you trade one to Vegas. It’d count as their pick.

  84. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce Wayne:
    Jethro Tull,

    The example of soccer is a strong point in favour of changing the system.Going to the 3 point system has reduced the number of teams playing for a draw, and has increased scoring.

    This is to be expected as the incentives of the scoring system clearly reward teams that try and score, while the NHL system clearly rewards teams that don’t try and score.

    Please re-read my post – in soccer, teams play for draws against better opposition, away from home. Soccer does not reward scoring if you are a weaker team. Staying in the EPL is the main thing for most teams because of TV money. Teams share out 8.3Billion GBP from TV deals. The figure in the next tier down is around 95% smaller.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2016/05/28/play-off-final-how-much-is-premier-league-promotion-really-worth/

    Last year, Leicester won the EPL drawing 31% of their games.

    https://www.premierleague.com/tables?co=1&se=19&mw=-1&ha=-1

    However, a mediocre team can still make profits of 200Million GBP.

    So where’s the incentive for winning? There’s just an incentive for staying mediocre, especially if you know you can’t compete with Chelsea, Man Utd, etc.

  85. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    dustrock:
    Speaking of Larsson,

    Woodguy I hate to throw more work at you.Is there a way to run Larsson’s numbers since December 1st?

    By eye, he’s been much improved since then.Just wonder if the WoodMoneys show similar.

    I can’t run WoodMoney over a specific time period (yet)

    His general numbers are:

    CF% 47.4%
    SCF% 45.5%
    GF% 64.5%
    PDO 1045

    So not great except he’s PDOing the shit out of the goals.

  86. Shane says:

    Bohologo,

    Now all I can think of is getting an Oilers sweater with ‘Cap Space’ on the back. I’d probably go broke though having to constantly re-sow the ever changing number.

  87. OF17 says:

    The defense, despite being imperfect, has me really excited moving forward. It’s filled with two-way types than can defend, handle the puck, make passes, skate effectively. The type that both goaltenders and forwards love. Russell is the only one in the top 7 that I don’t feel great about moving forward. We’re at the point where instead of only having 1-2 real keepers on defense, we’re only 1 away from having a full hand of them. Sekera is the only one of them over 24, and even he likely has 3-4 years left. The Edmonton Oilers actually have a defense worthy of getting excited about.

  88. N64 says:

    Professor Q:
    N64,

    Unless you trade one to Vegas. It’d count as their pick.

    Yes. Or a deal with Vegas to take the one you want or something else. Vegas is not going to take 30 D so they should be able to establish prices to avoid specific D from multiple teams that want to roll 7-3-1. And you can even make those insurance deals to cover a non-rental brought in at the trade deadline (assuming Vegas pays the expansion fee on the specified date). Good excuse to mention that again.

  89. N64 says:

    Bohologo: I think we are onto something here. Let’s quit our crummy jobs, set up a Cap Space hockey sweater business for 28 teams (no Flames or Leafs, right?), make a pile of money, and buy the Oilers from Katz.Reasonable?

    wearable IOT display? make sure you update it from the internet. more money when you deploy your jersey botnet.

  90. classict says:

    Bag of Pucks: My concerns with the ‘regress to the meat’ wishful thinking is I suspect his offensive downturn is partly due to the fact that he’s been forced to be more defensively responsible under MacLellan. Unfortunately, cheating for O and playing on the wrong side of the puck had become a big part of Eberle’s game under previous regimes.

    Absolutely, he could return to the mean, but are you happy with that if that means him also returning to giving up as much or more the other way?

    If he’s changed his game to not cheat for offense anymore wouldn’t we see a noticeable dip in his shot totals though? He’s still getting shots off he’s just not scoring on them.

  91. Lowetide says:

    Zach Laing
    👨🏻‍💻
    ‏@zjlaing

    .@FriedgeHNIC’s “educated guess” is the Oilers could be looking for a 2nd, as they need to repay BOS a 2nd for Chiarelli. @OilersNow

    As I have mentioned before, I think a third is more realistic.

  92. npanciroli says:

    Lowetide,

    This is for Davidson right?

    Seems like bad asset management if Davidson goes for picks.

  93. NYCOIL "Gentleman Backpacker" says:

    Jethro Tull: 4. Learns valuable lesson the Oilers spent 10yrs learning.
    5. Remembers he is also constrained by the salary cap.

    Oilers spent 10 years on expensive veterans? The problem was the opposite–no good veterans, giving young players too much responsibility too soon.

  94. Professor Q says:

    Lowetide:
    Zach Laing

    ‏@zjlaing

    .@FriedgeHNIC’s “educated guess” is the Oilers could be looking for a 2nd, as they need to repay BOS a 2nd for Chiarelli. @OilersNow

    As I have mentioned before, I think a third is more realistic.

    Can they not appeal said 2nd? I think it’s an asinine ruling that the NHL should just give up on. Lou got away with it during the same time frame, so why does Chia need to pay for the NHL’s stupidity?

  95. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Great interview, Jon and Darcy.

    Thanks Brucey

  96. Lowetide says:

    Jethro Tull:
    http://www.tsn.ca/talent/oilers-seem-comfortable-chasing-the-game-1.667731

    Oilers riding score effects to the playoffs?

    Interesting article. It sounds like Travis thinks the Oilers have stumbled into it, I wonder (or have wondered) if McLellan runs McDavid heavy in the third period of games they trail. COuld be other things, too.

  97. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Lloyd B.: I did read it.Very good and yes he is achieving it.

    All I’m saying is I’m glad they are spoon feeding him rather than throwing him in the deep end and keeping him there.

    I agree with that. Giving it to him as he can handle it.

    There’s nothing wrong with giving a guy more when he shows he can do it.

    Werenski is 19 years old and playing 1sts in CBJ and doing ok with Jones.

    Benning’s results are better than Werenski’s imo and their minutes aren’t *that* different, especially when Benning is with Sekera.

  98. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    russ99,

    Woodguy, your post yesterday was a balanced breath of fresh air.

    Thanks Russ.

    That means a lot.

  99. Professor Q says:

    Lowetide,

    But if other teams do it too, shouldn’t it even out anyways (same game outcomes if occurring on same or different nights)?

  100. John Chambers says:

    Lowetide: Interesting article. It sounds like Travis thinks the Oilers have stumbled into it, I wonder (or have wondered) if McLellan runs McDavid heavy in the third period of games they trail. COuld be other things, too.

    Yost posits an interesting point about the Oilers D perhaps jumping more into the play when trailing, thereby improving Corsi, shot- and goal-share.

    I would consider all of Klefbom, Sekara, Russell, and perhaps Benning (and to some extent Nurse and Larsson) mobile defensemen, and believe there’s probably an opportunity to turn them loose a bit more.

    That said, the Oilers D have done a much much better job of buttoning down defensively, so there is merit in them having taken a conservative approach to attacking.

  101. npanciroli says:

    John Chambers,

    Visually it looks like the Oiler’s D don’t get caught much pinching etc. so maybe McLellan does have them play conservatively.

  102. Lowetide says:

    Professor Q:
    Lowetide,

    But if other teams do it too, shouldn’t it even out anyways (same game outcomes if occurring on same or different nights)?

    Well other teams don’t have McDavid. I guess I am saying we are talking as if it isan Oilers thing and it might be a McDavid thing.

  103. Bruce Wayne says:

    Jethro Tull: Please re-read my post – in soccer, teams play for draws against better opposition, away from home.Soccer does not reward scoring if you are a weaker team.Staying in the EPL is the main thing for most teams because of TV money.Teams share out 8.3Billion GBP from TV deals.The figure in the next tier down is around 95% smaller.

    http://www.telegraph.co.uk/football/2016/05/28/play-off-final-how-much-is-premier-league-promotion-really-worth/

    Last year, Leicester won the EPL drawing 31% of their games.

    https://www.premierleague.com/tables?co=1&se=19&mw=-1&ha=-1

    However, a mediocre team can still make profits of 200Million GBP.

    So where’s the incentive for winning?There’s just an incentive for staying mediocre, especially if you know you can’t compete with Chelsea, Man Utd, etc.

    You have this completely backwards, on each point.

    First, to go to the original post, the home field advantage in soccer is amongst the biggest in pro sports, valued at about a half goal per game. Insofar as teams play for the draw on the road, this is why.

    Second, all teams play for the win insofar as they are able. A hypothetical team .500 that drew every single game last year would finish with 38 points, one point out of relegation. Contrast that with the NHL in which the same team finishes first in the entire league.

    So sure Leicester drew 12 out of 38 games, but that isn’t a significant number in soccer terms, everybody draws games. They also won 23 games, the most in the league.

    By contrast, Newcastle was the last team relegated, two points behind Sunderland. To make up that difference they would have had to either turn three losses into ties or turn one loss into a win. Which do you think is easier? Crystal Palace and Bournemouth were free and clear of relegation despite losing more games than Sunderland precisely because they won more games.

    The scoring system in soccer is a huge incentive to win games, and it quite clearly works if you watch the games. Both teams are trying to win the games because the only way to be successful.

    If the NHL changed its scoring system to what soccer uses it would transform the game, at least in the regular season, overnight.

  104. Bag of Pucks says:

    classict: If he’s changed his game to not cheat for offense anymore wouldn’t we see a noticeable dip in his shot totals though? He’s still getting shots off he’s just not scoring on them.

    Not necessarily. Cheating for offense may have given him an extra split second or two to get his shot off, or to get to a more advantageous spot or angle from which to shoot. A player can decline in shot quality while maintaining shot volume. I believe this is now known as ‘The Eakins Effect’ lol

    Everyone talks about normalization in S% as if it’s a spin on a roulette wheel. The reality is Eberle may be taking shots of a lesser quality, and thus while the volume hasn’t appreciably declined, the results have.

    Hockey players really buy into this meme btw. “If I just keep getting my shots, the worm will turn and they’ll start going in.” Maybe, but maybe you’ve changed where you’re taking the bulk of your shots, or maybe you’ve become predictable and the goalies have a book on you now, or maybe you had an offseason shot tutor and a new stick and now you’re no longer Angus Young with his SG. Now you’re trying to conjure up ‘Love Hungry Man’ with a Strat!

    Btw, this is the intrinsic flaw in relying on shot distance data alone as a proxy for shot quality. That data doesn’t factor in time to shoot, quality of the incoming pass, location and readiness of the goalie, proximity of defenders, etc. all of which factor into a shot’s quality.

  105. commonfan14 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: frjohnk: This would make 3rd periods more wide open
    Reg win 3 points, 0 points to looser
    OT win 2 points, 0 points to looser
    shootout win 1 point, 0 points to looser
    No no no. Just make all games worth the same and the problem is solved. 3-0 for regulation results, 2-1 for gimmick time.

    I don’t think you’ll ever see NHL coaches really open up tie games in the 3rd as long as a regulation loss is their worst-case scenario.

    They’ll likely figure it’s better to go into OT and have a 50-50 shot at 2 points than to open it up in Regulation and expose themselves to a 50-50 shot of getting 0 points.

    If all losses mean 0 points, you take that risk-reward calculation away from them.

  106. Bag of Pucks says:

    Bohologo: Agree completely. I’m not saying it’s the best move, or even the right one, but we fall in love with players, and it’s hard to feel the same way about Cap Space, which doesn’t even look good on the back of your home town team’s sweater.

    But it’s an asset, as you submit.

    If you free up Eberle’s cap space, and subtract a contract from the 50 list, could you sign (hypothetically) both Oshie and Setoguchi for RW, and keep Jesse P down on the farm? Or other affordable pieces to play with the core?

    Again, I’m not sure if it’s a good idea, but a credible GM has to have the conversation at least.

    Man, I love this idea of a ‘Cap Space’ jersey.

    The obvious question is what number do you put on the back?

  107. Jethro Tull says:

    Bruce Wayne: You have this completely backwards, on each point.

    First, to go to the original post, the home field advantage in soccer is amongst the biggest in pro sports, valued at about a half goal per game.Insofar as teams play for the draw on the road, this is why.

    Second, all teams play for the win insofar as they are able.A hypothetical team .500 that drew every single game last year would finish with 38 points, one point out of relegation.Contrast that with the NHL in which the same team finishes first in the entire league.

    So sure Leicester drew 12 out of 38 games, but that isn’t a significant number in soccer terms, everybody draws games. They also won 23 games, the most in the league.

    By contrast, Newcastle was the last team relegated, two points behind Sunderland.To make up that difference they would have had to either turn three losses into ties or turn one loss into a win.Which do you think is easier?Crystal Palace and Bournemouth were free and clear of relegation despite losing more games than Sunderland precisely because they won more games.

    The scoring system in soccer is a huge incentive to win games, and it quite clearly works if you watch the games.Both teams are trying to win the games because the only way to be successful.

    If the NHL changed its scoring system to what soccer uses it would transform the game, at least in the regular season, overnight.

    No I do not have it wrong. This is something i grew up with, and know extremely well, having played semi-professionally and trialed with top teams.

    Drawing every third game IS significant. I also said that there is home field advantage, but i do not know why as the rules are the same for both teams, which you would know if you watched. The home team does not get preference for anything except changing rooms.

    You are not reading what i have written. Middling to poor teams do not play to win against the top teams, they look to draw and to beat their peers. Staying in the top tier is the main objective for all but 5 teams due to the fiscal reasons i stated.

    If you’d have grown up watching Arsenal play the offside trap to death and Man Utd and Spurs get continually fined for fielding farm teams against lesser opposition, then you may have a different perspective.

    My main point is that a soccer based scoring system brings its own inherent problems with it and I’d much rather see one like the Rugby system which rewards offense and punished poor defense.

  108. hunter1909 says:

    Nurse being expected to return this month is excellent news.

  109. hunter1909 says:

    Bag of Pucks: The reality is Eberle may be taking shots of a lesser quality, and thus while the volume hasn’t appreciably declined, the results have.

    Eberle needs to skate. Eberle this season isn’t skating. He’s been floating.

  110. fifthcartel says:

    Benning is incredible.

    I remember looking through Boston’s prospects and seeing him and thinking they have an interesting player. RHD with solid college stats? Always give those a chance.

    Then I saw he (smartly) rejected Boston’s request to go back to school and became a FA and thought he might be interested in coming here being a St. Albert guy.

    I posted something wondering if he could step in a la Petry and wondered if his skating was as good and what not.

    I forget if he was a year behind or ahead Petry but that doesn’t matter now because he’s been amazing.

    I think he toured Chicago and LA, maybe Vancouver, but thankfully he chose Edmonton. I think he’s very under the radar.

  111. Bag of Pucks says:

    hunter1909: Eberle needs to skate. Eberle this season isn’t skating. He’s been floating.

    One thing I’ve noticed about MacLellan is he’s 100% committed to killing the ‘fly-bys’ on both the forecheck and backcheck. He wants his Fs to stop/start and arrive at the puck with intent.

    Eberle was the King of the Fly-Bys. I get it. Energy conservation. When I play hockey at my age now, I’m the King of the Fly-By too. But I don’t get paid $6mil per to play hockey ; )

  112. Professor Q says:

    hunter1909:
    Nurse being expected to return this month is excellent news.

    It’s always good to take it slow and cautious when Nursing such an injury, however.

  113. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Btw, this is the intrinsic flaw in relying on shot distance data alone as a proxy for shot quality. That data doesn’t factor in time to shoot, location and readiness of the goalie, proximity of defenders, etc. all of which factor into a shot’s quality.

    From what I’ve read the biggest factor that we can’t account for with NHL data is puck movement before the shot.

    Passes that make the goalie move from one side of the net to the other have a higher chance of leading to goals than any other passes.

    Screens are another thing that isn’t accounted for and 2 on 1 ‘s too.

    In terms of puck movement and “getting a great pass in a great spot” here’s the top 10 NHL 1st assist/60 players from 11/12-16/17

    Player A160
    SIDNEY.CROSBY 1.25
    EVGENY.KUZNETSOV 1.10
    TAYLOR.HALL 1.05
    EVGENI.MALKIN 1.03
    RYAN.GETZLAF 0.99
    JOE.THORNTON 0.96
    PATRICK.KANE 0.95
    THOMAS.VANEK 0.95
    BLAKE.WHEELER 0.93
    DEREK.STEPAN 0.92

    If you go from playing with one of these guys to not, its gonna hurt.

    Also,

    Peter Chiarelli traded two of those players.

  114. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bruce Wayne:
    Jethro Tull,

    The example of soccer is a strong point in favour of changing the system.Going to the 3 point system has reduced the number of teams playing for a draw, and has increased scoring.

    This is to be expected as the incentives of the scoring system clearly reward teams that try and score, while the NHL system clearly rewards teams that don’t try and score.

    Hear hear. See: latest Oilers game for details.

    News flash: 100% of games that are scoreless in regulation receive a bonus point. This statement does not apply to any given number of goals scored except zero.

    Related: NHL coaches value low-event players and NO-event players.

  115. Bruce Wayne says:

    Jethro Tull,

    Did you know that in the premier league at one time 75% of penalty kicks were awarded to the home team (this is now done to 55%)? Home field advantage is real and demonstrable and it doesn’t have anything to do with the rules.

    yIn any case, ou are mixing issues. The scoring system clearly incentivizes both scoring and winning. This is demonstrable on both rational terms and empirical terms.

    That bottom feeders play conservatively against top teams has to do with the inherent tactical nature of the sport, and the inherent disadvantages they have in terms of roster construction. Nonetheless, within these constraints most soccer teams try and win, losing teams don’t get any more draws than winning teams or middling teams. What you have is a diversity of styles as dictated by the differing talent levels.

    By contrast in hockey, every team plays the same. They start off playing not to lose waiting for the other team to make a mistake, and then only actively tries to score only once they fall behind in the game.

    The scoring system explains these differences in behaviour.

  116. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Shane:
    Bohologo,

    Now all I can think of is getting an Oilers sweater with ‘Cap Space’ on the back. I’d probably go broke though having to constantly re-sow the ever changing number.

    Number “$” surely

  117. Mustard Tiger says:

    10 minutes of 3 on 3, followed by shootout, which will probably very rarely happen.
    No loser points, just straight win-loss.
    Just like every other major sport.
    Any takers?

  118. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bruce Wayne: Second, all teams play for the win insofar as they are able. A hypothetical team .500 that drew every single game last year would finish with 38 points, one point out of relegation. Contrast that with the NHL in which the same team finishes first in the entire league.

    DINGDINGDINGDING

  119. spoiler says:

    Y’all know the present points system is in place because THE OWNERS want this system, right? And we all understand–right?–that there’s lots of incentive for them to keep the system the way it is, whereas the incentives for changing are distant and ephemeral.

    It’s not going to change, so get over it.

    It’s the OWNER point, not the Bettman point.

  120. Bag of Pucks says:

    spoiler:

    It’s not going to change, so get over it.

    Said every husband arguing with his wife ever.

  121. Bruce McCurdy says:

    spoiler:
    Y’all know the present points system is in place because THE OWNERS want this system, right?And we all understand–right?–that there’s lots of incentive for them to keep the system the way it is, whereas the incentives for changing are distant and ephemeral.

    It’s not going to change, so get over it.

    It’s the OWNER point, not the Bettman point.

    “Bettman” has always been a proxy for “the League” = “the owners”. He’s just the front man.

    If I were an owner I would want a better fucking product. But that’s just me.

  122. Bruce Wayne says:

    spoiler:
    Y’all know the present points system is in place because THE OWNERS want this system, right?And we all understand–right?–that there’s lots of incentive for them to keep the system the way it is, whereas the incentives for changing are distant and ephemeral.

    It’s not going to change, so get over it.

    It’s the OWNER point, not the Bettman point.

    This is true. And the owners are right. What this season has taught me is that fans don’t care good hockey, they don’t care about offense, what they want is the illusion of competitiveness. Look how ecstatic Oiler fans are following this, frankly, boring team that plays a style tailor made to produce ties. “We” were happy after “winning” a 0-0 game. Think about that for a second.

  123. Side says:

    spoiler:
    Y’all know the present points system is in place because THE OWNERS want this system, right?And we all understand–right?–that there’s lots of incentive for them to keep the system the way it is, whereas the incentives for changing are distant and ephemeral.

    It’s not going to change, so get over it.

    It’s the OWNER point, not the Bettman point.

    This quote by Bettman:

    ““The media debates it a lot, but we don’t get a lot of negative feedback from fans,” Bettman said “In fact, when you see the way the races played out and the importance of every game in the regular season, there are teams that wish they had a couple of points from October and November they would have liked to have down the stretch. The point system is working extraordinarily well.””

    https://ca.sports.yahoo.com/blogs/nhl-puck-daddy/gary-bettman–no-need-to-change-nhl-standings-point-system-151940204.html

    Reads a lot like classic Bettman, which goes something like “what are you talking about, the fans love it! *plugs ears ignoring fans who hate it* It’s working because I said so, you guys! Can’t you see!”

    and not “what can I say, my hands are tied… it’s what the owners want” that you would suggest.

    There can still be a point system, it just doesn’t have to be a crappy Bettman system.

  124. Side says:

    Bruce Wayne: This is true.And the owners are right.What this season has taught me is that fans don’t care good hockey, they don’t care about offense, what they want is the illusion of competitiveness.Look how ecstatic Oiler fans are following this, frankly, boring team that plays a style tailor made to produce ties.“We” were happy after “winning” a 0-0 game.Think about that for a second.

    Have any examples or evidence for any of the above?

  125. Professor Q says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Number “$” surely

    I was going to say that as well, but was too slow.

  126. Chachi says:

    Bruce Wayne: This is true.And the owners are right.What this season has taught me is that fans don’t care good hockey, they don’t care about offense, what they want is the illusion of competitiveness.Look how ecstatic Oiler fans are following this, frankly, boring team that plays a style tailor made to produce ties.“We” were happy after “winning” a 0-0 game.Think about that for a second.

    I thought about it for a second. Some 0-0 games are exciting. Some 0-0 games are boring. Some 6-5 games are exciting. Some 6-5 games are just badly played hockey. An intellectual approach to determining whether a hockey game was exciting or not would not put much emphasis (if any at all) on the final score. After all, if winning doesn’t matter to intellectuals neither should the final score.

    Also, Jethro Tull is correct, the 3 point for a win, 1 point for a draw system has not made soccer more exciting. It actually introduces an incentive to play more conservatively and to sit on 1-0 leads when you get them because a win is so much more valuable than a draw. It is pretty hard to compare hockey and soccer though, given the massive differences in salary budgets between the perennial contenders and the mediocre middle group of teams in most leagues.

  127. treevojo says:

    Bruce Wayne: This is true.And the owners are right.What this season has taught me is that fans don’t care good hockey, they don’t care about offense, what they want is the illusion of competitiveness.Look how ecstatic Oiler fans are following this, frankly, boring team that plays a style tailor made to produce ties.“We” were happy after “winning” a 0-0 game.Think about that for a second.

    There was nothing boring about watching Connor Mcdavid in that game.

    He was electric pretty much every shift he touched the ice.

    Sometimes the score doesn’t reflect the excitement one single player can bring to a game.

    I don’t need him to get points every game to watch in awe of his talent.

    The fact that the oilers are winning and are playoff bound is just a bonus to watching something special.

    You should get out of your own way and try to enjoy it as well.

  128. treevojo says:

    Chachi,

    Lol

    I swear I didn’t read this till after.

    U r thinking the right way.

  129. Chachi says:

    treevojo:
    Chachi,

    Lol

    I swear I didn’t read this till after.

    U r thinking the right way.

    Basketball is super high scoring, but I can’t watch an entire game until playoffs in the NBA or March Madness starts in the NCAA because I find the games are generally dull until then.

    Darts is probably the best sport for people who love high scoring games. It has huge scores, absolutely no defense, light math and that awesome dude yelling out the scores!

  130. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Chachi: Also, Jethro Tull is correct, the 3 point for a win, 1 point for a draw system has not made soccer more exciting. It actually introduces an incentive to play more conservatively and to sit on 1-0 leads when you get them because a win is so much more valuable than a draw. It is pretty hard to compare hockey and soccer though, given the massive differences in salary budgets between the perennial contenders and the mediocre middle group of teams in most leagues.

    I couldn’t disagree more. The incentive to sit on a lead is the same as ever, as a win is the best possible result either way. The incentive to break a tie, however, is greatly enhanced.

    In the NHL the incentive is to “sit on a tie”.

  131. N64 says:

    Shane:
    Bohologo,

    Now all I can think of is getting an Oilers sweater with ‘Cap Space’ on the back. I’d probably go broke though having to constantly re-sow the ever changing number.

    Go with Dead Cap Space. Then you’ll only need to change the number when you pick a new goat.

  132. Chachi says:

    Bruce McCurdy: I couldn’t disagree more. The incentive to sit on a lead is the same as ever, as a win is the best possible result either way. The incentive to break a tie, however, is greatly enhanced.

    In the NHL the incentive is to “sit on a tie”.

    I think we will have to agree to disagree. I have watched thousands of hours of soccer. Most games start out being played extremely conservatively and once (or if) one side scores it gets even worse with the leading side getting 10 men behind the ball at all times. I enjoy the tactics involved and grew up watching it so I will continue to watch it, but I can see why many people find it boring.

    Edited to add: I used to think moving to 3 points for a regulation win would make the NHL more exciting, but coaching and goal tending being what they are these days I do not think it would change tactics much at all.

  133. npanciroli says:

    Oesterle and Lander recalled.

  134. Side says:

    Are there any stats out there that show how many games ended in tie before the Bettman point system and how many games go to Overtime under the Bettman point system?

    Surely this can be researched by people who are not as lazy as I am.

  135. Professor Q says:

    Recalls means that it’s almost time for practices to restart! Excitement increases.

  136. Lowetide says:

    If you want to piss on people, start your own blog and start writing. If you want to post here, have some respect. Thanks.

  137. spoiler says:

    Bruce McCurdy: “Bettman” has always been a proxy for “the League” = “the owners”. He’s just the front man.

    If I were an owner I would want a better fucking product. But that’s just me.

    Bruce, don’t you think as an owner, seats in the seats would be a primary concern? You can build whatever styled-team you wish–exciting or otherwise–but a point system that fills the seats for longer, even in seasons when your team is not as competitive, has to be awfully attractive.

    It floats all boats, whether they’re barnacled and dingy, or clean and painted. And its effect on “excitement” is I think, overstated.

    It’s not the point system I would build, but I respect the Owners’ choice and have the good sense not to bark into a wind that’s not letting up any time soon.

    There’s been a LOT of barking into the wind this comment thread. Wish we could waste our time here less wastefully, lol.

  138. Jethro Tull says:

    Lowetide:
    If you want to piss on people, start your own blog and start writing. If you want to post here, have some respect. Thanks.

    I thought it was pretty respectful, unless you deleted some posts?

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