Dominoes

The Edmonton Oilers sent Kailer Yamamoto to the Spokane Chiefs today, an unlikely audition finally running its course more than a month past expectation. No matter what was said today, nothing can change the fact a 150-pound phenom pushed all the way to an NHL job on a skill line. Well done, young man, we’ll see you soon.

KAILER YAMAMOTO 2017-18

  • 5×5 points per 60: 0.52
  • Power-play points per 60: 5.11
  • Corsi for 5×5 %: 60.08
  • Corsi for 5×5 % REL: 6.18
  • Shots on goal/percentage: 23 shots/0.0
  • Boxcars: 9gp, 0-3-3
  • (All numbers via NaturalStatTrick and Hockey-Reference)

It was the right call, suspect a few of his first 23 shots will cash one year from now. Yamamoto’s replacement will be the subject of some discussion in the coming days, it could be anyone from Jesse Puljujarvi to Anton Slepyshev to Drake Caggiula, and beyond. For now, Brad Malone was the recall from Bakersfield to make the 23-man roster complete.

CURRENT OILERS ROSTER

The recall of Malone saves a few dollars and of course reduces the amount of skill among the forwards. Malone should be able to help on the penalty kill and had some offensive success in preseason. Malone has spent some time in the NHL (3gp, 0-0-0) this year.

CURRENT 50-MAN ROSTER

  • The movement of Yamamoto to Spokane frees up one more spot on the 50-man roster.
  • That slot may or may not go to Chris Kelly. Mark Spector has speculated on it, suggested it was imminent, and Spector is connected when it comes to Oilers news and information.
  • Brad Malone, the new recall, duplicates a lot of the things Kelly would bring, so there is a thread of logic that suggests Kelly will not receive a new contract. I would think we’re getting close to sink or swim re: Kelly and his continued presence around the team.

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36 Responses to "Dominoes"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    I really really really hope that Brad Malone can play some decent even strength hockey, be aggressive on the forecheck and cause some turnovers and be responsible in his own end and provide some good work on the PK.

    The reason for this is, if Brad Malone fails in this role, I can see the Chris Kelly signing happen and I refuse to acknowledge that possibility being real.

  2. Munny says:

    I liked Malone’s game during his short stint. Had a crease mindset. Another PK option helps. I would have called him up too, especially considering the verbal on Pujo last game.

  3. Peacecountry says:

    I’m wondering why the Oilers aren’t giving Ty Rattie a shot. Seems to be producing at a level consistent with a call up. RW, skilled prospect. Is there something here I’m missing?

  4. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    – Great post LT! As much as Kailer”forced” things in camp he did the same in his stint here

    – He really really sucked, you can’t gift anyone top-6 minutes and not score. Small sample size, sh% yada yada: A learning process for him and the team: no bidness being here

    – Some great thoughtful posts about the current state of team.

    – For what it’s worth this is my mental math of why we suck:

    1) Luck
    2) PP/PK (mostly luck, some strange things)
    3) No Sek
    4) Klef not being same level
    5) Talbot very very mediocre
    6) Kailer in top-6 sucking, killing scoring: was one of least effective top-6 guys in league

    – I’d be flabergassed if Chia does anything drastic. In the worst case scenario we suck all year and don’t make the playoffs.

    – I’d rather that than trade RNH now for a return less than Duchene

    – Sky is not falling

    – Just make the playoffs: see Nashville

  5. Georges says:

    This means one of the HC’s pre-season bets has been settled.

    It looks like he might settle his Klefbom bet and pull back his minutes to a reasonable number.

    The last bet is playing CMD-Drai together for 16 5v5 minutes a night knowing the questions about secondary scoring. CMD is a 3.5 GF60 player with or without Drai. Drai can have a bigger impact on his own line. And more of our forward group will get to play with skill.

    I’m waiting on the coach to settle his other two bets. And then to quit gambling.

    I sure hope PC doesn’t trade anyone before then.

  6. Munny says:

    Peacecountry:
    I’m wondering why the Oilers aren’t giving Ty Rattie a shot. Seems to be producing at a level consistent with a call up. RW, skilled prospect. Is there something here I’m missing?

    He was the other good option. Chia preferred Malone and probably had his reasons, PK likely being one of them. I’m hoping it’s also because the plan is to give Sleppy some top 6 minutes…

    But most likely, it will be The Tube.

  7. Mr. D. says:

    One good move is get Klef off the PK. He tends to be too soft in front and in the corners and doesn’t seem to block shots.

  8. LMHF#1 says:

    Mr. D.,

    Don’t think they have enough left if they do that.

    Russell can’t PK to save his life.

    Gryba’s too slow.

    Benning struggles as well.

    Even Larsson is having an off year there. Getting burned far too often.

  9. russ99 says:

    I’ll be curious to see if things are better in the room and on the ice with Yamamoto back on Spokane.

    All of these young RFA forwards under pressure to produce with next year’s contract on the line being given 3rd and 4th line roles while Chia plays with his new toy and gifts him first line sorties. May not be the best attitude for players fighting for NHL jobs, l but I can see it getting players down.

    Hope that McLellan breaks up Leon and McDavid too, especially after that effort yesterday.

    Give some of these players a shot, at worst we’re right back where we are now.

    The last thing I’m going to say on Hall, Eberle and Pouliot is this: whenever a new GM takes over a team he wants to put his stamp on the team and move out what he perceives is the old regime’s mistakes. And I’m sure this was amplified due to so many years of mismanagement by the old boy regime. I don’t doubt that this played a part, some of it justifiably so.

    I don’t dislike the moves, but he should have signed or traded for NHL talent to fill the gaps with the kids.

  10. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    Georges,

    – I agree Georges. From a tactical perspective, given their dearth of scoring: splitting up Drai and McD is a no brainer, IMO: at worse they continue as worst scoring team in the league and Drai develops as a C, because that’s how they are going to win cups with those two as C’s IMO.

    – And if they can’t find any internal solutions for wingers, then they know

    – Kailer was a disaster in top-6, so he’s going to have to exhaust other solutions

  11. Melvis says:

    russ99: I’ll be curious to see if things are better in the room and on the ice with Yamamoto back on Spokane.
    All of these young RFA forwards under pressure to produce with next year’s contract on the line being given 3rd and 4th line roles while Chia plays with his new toy and gifts him first line sorties. May not be the best attitude for players fighting for NHL jobs, l but I can see it getting players down.

    I think that’s quite perceptive. And quite easy relatable to in anyone’s personal work life. Imagine the boss gifting the new raw kid a project you’ve been toiling over for several years of your adult career. One might start thinking about moving on. Esspecially if the bottom line might have suffered as a result of the experiment.

  12. Pouzar says:

    EST starts suck for me so it’s a good time to sit out a couple games.
    TMc is losing me.

  13. Jaxon says:

    Will be interesting to watch the Canadian Junior prospects as the junior trade deadline approaches (sometime around January 10th, I believe).

    Will Yamamoto (Spokane), Benson (Vancouver), or Skinner (Lethbridge) get traded to Regina (Memorial Cup host) or a WHL contender like Portland, Victoria, Swift Current, or Moose Jaw)?

    Will Safin (Saint John Sea Dog) get traded to a QMJHL contender like Rimouski, Halifax, or Blainville-Boisbriand Armada?

    Will Maksimov (Niagara), Samorukov (Guelph), or Wells (Peterborough) get traded to an OHL contender like Sarnia, Barrie, or Sault Ste. Marie?

    None of them are on favourites at the moment, although Yamamoto and Benson may influence the direction of their current teams now that they are both back in the W.

  14. sliderule says:

    JP should stay in AHL until he starts doing something.Like don’t tell me about all his shots.Only one of which has gone in.by the way.
    The Oil and Bakerfield should invest in a few more plywood goalies to prove that 100 percent of all shots that don’t hit the holes don’t go in.You can dent the plywood with velocity but it proves nothing.
    Yamamoto should not have played more than a couple of games .It was obvious to even the unwashed that he was not ready.Playing him all those games while not adding a player who could help on PK all the time getting killed on PK is going to be a killer.
    There is something going on with the team chemistry.Whether it’s the rumoured conflict between a couple of guys or something else it’s not right and has to be dealt with

  15. Munny says:

    I just feel bad for Team Russia in games like this.

  16. Munny says:

    Pouzar:
    EST starts suck for me so it’s a good time to sit out a couple games.
    TMc is losing me.

    He’s been feeding your Dman some minutes.

  17. Lowetide says:

    Munny:
    I just feel bad for Team Russia in games like this.

    Every couple of years they send over a disaster.

  18. McSorley33 says:

    2015 draft class update:

    Kyle Connor getting better and better on the top line with the jets. Another goal and assist tonight.

  19. McSorley33 says:

    This blog rarely agrees on anything……

    It *is* a no brainer Drai actually play C……..

    That we have to have this conversation with our coach says something…..

  20. who says:

    Don’t think this team was ever as good as the pre season predictions. But they are not near as bad as their record right now would indicate. The truth is somewhere in the middle.
    Question is, where does Chia go from here . An interesting exercise might be to consider what this roster would look like in the fall of 2019 if Chia did nothing but draft and develop and re signed the current players he liked and could afford under the cap. This assumes any excess players would be dealt for picks or prospects, nothing more.

    Caggiula. Macdavid. JP
    Lucic. Drai. Yamamoto
    Slepyshev. Nuge /Strome. Kassian
    Benson. Khaira. Pakarinen

    Klefbom. Larsson
    Nurse. Benning
    Sekera / Russell. Bear /Jones

    Talbot?
    Broissoit /Ellis

    This example assumes one of Nuge or Strome is traded next summer and one of Sekera or Russell is traded in the summer of 2019. It also assumes that Talbot is re signed for roughly the same salary.
    The question is, will this roster be good enough to compete for a cup.

  21. TheVengeFulOne says:

    Looking at the future makes me uneasy. We need to add quite a few pieces which are all moderately expensive, plus at least one top 6 winger, which is fairly expensive. In all liklihood, we can’t even resign the current roster this summer. Only way to make this work is with trades. Would hate to trade nuge, and I don’t see Lucic or Russel being moveable. I sort of doubt we can afford Maroon if he keeps producing like this, he will have a track record.

    The kids gotta learn to check and score, or we will be in big touble.

  22. VOR says:

    Normally I have one pet dog and several stock dogs. However, the fires in California have at least temporarily upset the balance of power. We are looking after two more Pitties. These dogs were particularly hard to place with a foster home because they are not just high energy but genuine athletic superstars. Their sport is agility and until the fire they were both in the top three in the US. Though Chance, the female is also world ranked in the wall climb.

    At the moment all three Pitties are asleep in my office/laundry room. In fact they are snuggled up together under a fuzzy red bath robe beside me looking like way less than 300 pounds of pure muscle. I love how dogs can fold themselves into tiny spaces. Even big dogs.

    They have earned their rest. This morning we did over an hour of agility work, jumping on and off hay bales, the big round ones. Their dismount is spectacular. They leap up and out flying well over my head and landing ten to fifteen feet from the bale.

    Then they ran around more or less keeping me company while I did a five kilometre sprint as part of my training for the Birkenbeiner. This afternoon they ran behind the quarter horses I was exercising. These horses are also high level athletes. In my pastures I have 3 former North American Champion quarterhorses. I also have the horses expected to be one and three in North America next season. They won’t get there without working out everyday all winter.

    So now my puppies are asleep and my horses are bedded down in their stalls in the barn for the night.

    The point of this story is that as a coach I used to think if my athletes had a bad game or tournament or meet that they had character flaws or problems at home or had been out partying the night before. But coaching equine and canine athletes if they underperform your first thought is they are sick. Next up you start looking for injuries. Failing that you figure you’ve messed up their diet or their supplements. If all those factors are eliminated you start questioning their training regime. What you never do is question their heart, desire, or character.

    I have come to realize as the years have passed that I believed the worst about some very fine young men and women and as a result let them compete sick and injured. I also failed to maximize their training regimes. However well they performed they could have done better if I had done better, been a better person. That thought is more than a little sobering and informs my current coaching practice. It also makes me very reluctant to attribute the Oilers lack of success to character issues.

  23. Mr. D. says:

    LMHF#1:
    Mr. D.,

    Don’t think they have enough left if they do that.

    Russell can’t PK to save his life.

    Gryba’s too slow.

    Benning struggles as well.

    Even Larsson is having an off year there. Getting burned far too often.

    Russell and Gryba are effective on the PK. If you’ve played hockey PK is 90% position.

  24. LMHF#1 says:

    Mr. D.,

    The fact that you could run a multi-minute clip tape of Russell flopping on the ice as the opposition scores PP goals suggests otherwise.

  25. Ryan says:

    McSorley33:
    This blog rarely agrees on anything……

    It *is* a no brainer Drai actually play C……..

    That we have to have this conversation with our coach says something…..

    Great article by young Willis.

    https://theathletic.com/148492/2017/11/06/its-time-for-todd-mclellan-to-take-a-page-out-of-joel-quennevilles-playbook/

  26. OriginalPouzar says:

    Game day!

    Oilers in Brooklyn!

    I’ll be at this one with the wife – send my back to YYC happy, please!

    Go Oilers!

  27. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jaxon:
    Will be interesting to watch the Canadian Junior prospects as the junior trade deadline approaches (sometime around January 10th, I believe).

    Will Yamamoto (Spokane), Benson (Vancouver), or Skinner (Lethbridge) get traded to Regina (Memorial Cup host) or a WHL contender like Portland, Victoria, Swift Current, or Moose Jaw)?

    Will Safin (Saint John Sea Dog) get traded to a QMJHL contender like Rimouski, Halifax, or Blainville-Boisbriand Armada?

    Will Maksimov (Niagara), Samorukov (Guelph), or Wells (Peterborough) get traded to an OHL contender like Sarnia, Barrie, or Sault Ste. Marie?

    None of them are on favourites at the moment, although Yamamoto and Benson may influence the direction of their current teams now that they are both back in the W.

    I have been folllowing all these prospects closely in the CHL since the season started and it would be great if a couple of them could make it far in their league playoffs and potentially in to the Memorial Cup.

    First and foremost, who has a shot at the WJHC?

    Yamamoto, Benson, Wells, Samorukov?

  28. OriginalPouzar says:

    sliderule:
    JP should stay in AHL until he starts doing something.Like don’t tell me about all his shots.Only one of which has gone in.by the way.
    The Oil and Bakerfield should invest in a few more plywood goalies to prove that 100 percent of all shots that don’t hit the holes don’t go in.You can dent the plywood with velocity but it proves nothing.
    Yamamoto should not have played more than a couple of games .It was obvious to even the unwashed that he was not ready.Playing him all those games while not adding a player who could help on PK all the timegetting killed on PK is going to be a killer.
    There is something going on with the team chemistry.Whether it’s the rumoured conflict between a couple of guys or something else it’s not right and has to be dealt with

    Its not uncommon for higher end prospects to have their offence spike when they come to the NHL.

    Happened to Drai in his draft plus 2 season.

    With Malone re-called, who is going to center Puljijarvi now? I assume that Joe G. gets that job for next game.

    How I miss Anton Lander!

  29. stush18 says:

    Mr. D.: Russell and Gryba are effective on the PK. If you’ve played hockey PK is 90% position.

    I agree.

    Gryba was one of our best defenders on the PK last year.

  30. Dicky94 says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Cool! Hope you get to cheer lots! I’m predicting an Oiler win and a successful road trip. The Detroit loss was rock bottom. There will be playoffs.

  31. meanashell11 says:

    I will be there as well. Last season this game was fun, hopefully again tonight!

  32. OriginalPouzar says:

    meanashell11:
    I will be there as well. Last season this game was fun, hopefully again tonight!

    Nice, do you live in New York or visiting like me? Wife ran the marathon on Sunday – we fly back home tomorrow.

    We are eating at VSpot before the game – looks like a vegan latin-style place and looks amazing (and has good reviews) – 10 minute walk to the Barclays Center.

  33. meanashell11 says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    I live in Connecticut. I was at the race Sunday for a while as well. I will be arriving at the BC just for the start of the game.

  34. Pouzar says:

    Munny: He’s been feeding your Dman some minutes.

    Yeah there’s that.

  35. Dustylegnd says:

    Ryan,

    Thanks for the link Ryan, just a fantastic article.

    I have recently been contemplating why TMc insists on keeping McDavid and Drai together, my question becomes even more relevant as we continue to lose more than we win

    I have been a defender of TMc, claiming when things do not work he quickly adjusts, and makes changes

    My claim is clearly not valid as he continues to run Dari and McDavid together game after game, creating a losing record, I keep posting McT doesn’t push string uphill, also no longer valid

    THE DEFINITION OF INSANITY IS CONTINUING THE SAME BEHAVIOUR AND EXPECTING A DIFFERENT OUTCOME

    TMc continues to run his two best players together on the 1st unit, with poor outcomes..

    Woodguy has provided excellent analysis clearly demonstrating that no matter who you run with McDavid his scoring numbers remain very close to the same and whom ever you run on McDavids right side, they will score at a higher rate than they would otherwise score at, or at least that is how I remember it

    Ergo: based on the article by Willis and Woodguys analysis, leaving Drai with McDavid is clearly a sub optimal utilization of available assets, WTF is TMc thinking?

    What say you?

  36. Mr. D. says:

    Last year
    Steller goaltending.
    Secondary scoring.
    It’s the difference. Cut and dry.
    Ffs get Klef of the PK.

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