The secret life of plants

The Oilers have the Aces and Kings, what these final 20 games should be about is finding the complementary players. I credit Todd McLellan, he didn’t put 97-29 together until late and he was rewarded with a goal from the young group. He’ll want to win 10 of the final 20 in order to have a story to tell at the end of the season, but that California road trip had to be encouraging overall.

THE ATHLETIC!

Great offer! Includes a free 7-day trial so you can try The Athletic on for size free and see if they enjoy the in-depth, ad-free coverage on the site. If you don’t feel it’s worth the $4.49/month, cancel anytime during trial before getting charged. Offer is here.

RIPPLE, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • February 2016: 3-11-0, goal differential -14 (6 points)
  • February 2017: 6-6-0, goal differential -2 (12 points)
  • February 2018: 5-8-1, goal differential -9 (11 points)

A disappointing game last night (Oilers didn’t have an answer for the Sharks in the second period) but the club did more damage in late February than I thought they would and there are some good signs. We’re on to March.

AFTER 63, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers 15-16: 22-34-7, goal differential -47 (51 points)
  • Oilers 16-17: 33-22-8, goal differential +16 (74 points)
  • Oilers 17-18: 27-32-4, goal differential -32 (58 points)

My entirely arbitrary goal for this year’s team is a 10-point improvement over the 2015-16 club (who finished with 70 points). A team that wants to hit 95+ points in 2018-19 can come up with myriad reasons to expect a 10-12 point spike next season. A 20-point climb? That’s a helluva gap. Important games ahead, even if everyone and their dog is telling you nothing matters. I think at 80 points, Chiarelli keeps his job. Just a guess.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM FEBRUARY

  • At home to: Colorado, Tampa Bay (Expected 0-1-1) (Actual 1-0-1)
  • On the road to: Los AngelesAnaheimSan Jose (Expected 1-1-1) (Actual 0-3-0)
  • At home to: Florida (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-1-0)
  • On the road to: Vegas, Arizona, Colorado (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 1-2-0)
  • At home to: Boston, Colorado (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 1-1-0)
  • On the road to: Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose (Expected 0-2-1) (Actual 2-1-0)
  • Overall expected result: 5-6-3, 13 points in 14 games
  • Current results: 5-8-1, 11 points in 14 games 

Man that was close! You would never have heard the end of it the Oilers won last night. The end run (4-2-0) saved the month, such as it is. We have one more full month to go before lottery and draft talk rule the day. Let’s try to enjoy it!

DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

  • Nurse-Larsson were 17-12 in 13:31 together, 1-1 GF, 2-5 HDSC and 10-6 SCF. Went 11-5 in 4:52 with the McDavid line, 9-9 in 6:34 with Leon. Were 9-5 against Kane-Pavelski-Donskoi in 5:10. Larsson was a little more rambunctious in his offensive sorties but he also gave away more than usual the other way.
  • Klefbom-Benning went 7-12 in 12:01 together, 1-0 GF, 2-5 in HDSC. Were 8-5 in 6:26 (1-0) with McDavid, and 9-6 against Hertl-Couture-Boedker. Benning got hammered on a play that should have been a penalty but he played well after and I’m not certain he was in California for the entire game. Klefbom needs Larsson.
  • Auvitu-Sekera were 5-15 in 9:43, man they chased. Were 0-3 in HD and got one Dzone start (nine for Klefbom-Benning and five for Nurse-Larsson) and I don’t think they are well suited to each other. Sekera doesn’t look sharp, as was expected.
  • Cam Talbot stopped 29 of 33, .879. I thought he missed the long ranger (second goal) but maybe it was tipped.
  • NaturalStatTrick and NHL.com.

FORWARDS, LAST NIGHT

  • Lucic-McDavid-Slepyshev were 19-14 in 15:25, 1-2 GF, 6-6 in shots and 3-5 in HDSC. Went 15-12 against the Couture line and 97 was 21-14 in 14:40 against Vlasic pickles. McDavid was 5-0 in 3:07 with Leon, good discipline by the coach. Lucic is going to take some heat today, the goal-scoring slump continues and he wasn’t at all physical in a game Edmonton was taking a beating. I, as always, am unconcerned about taking dumb penalties but very concerned about 27’s execution when he has the puck on his stick. I remain concerned about his range of vision.
  • Cammalleri-Draisaitl-Rattie went 7-13 in 8:58, 0-2 GF and 0-6 in HDSC. There are hits and there are misses. Leon needs better linemates. The big man didn’t clear a puck and a goal against resulted but the big story here is LD needs faster horses.
  • Aberg-Strome-Puljujarvi went 6-7 in 10:25 together, 1-0 in GF. This line performed well and should see another game together. The goal was a combination of hard work and skill. Strome back checked (taking over from JP) and recovered the puck, send a pass to Aberg, who threaded the needle to the big Finn. JP got about 11 percent of the puck and was 100 percent smiles when his 10th of the season found the back of the net.
  • Caggiula-Khaira-Pakarinen were 8-13 in 8:37 together, I didn’t see much that was notable. Khaira was the best player on the line, I’d like to see him move up the depth chart. Perhaps when Nuge returns.

You never know with deadline additions. Patrick Maroon scored in his first game as an Oiler, Pat Hughes was unable to hit the score sheet. I like Aberg’s speed and his skill, both Swedish defensemen were happy with his performance last night. If he plays that well again, wouldn’t be surprised to see him get some cherry time with 97 or 29.

BENNING HIT

Clearly a penalty, clearly a bad miss by the referee. Edmonton gave up a goal and then another, and that’s all she wrote. There are two issues. First, officiating is bad and that was a big point in the game. Benning took a real tumble there and it was a trip and a crosscheck. Bad form.

That said, the collapse afterward is all on the Oilers. Need to tighten up before the fall and there were several onlookers in white, blue and orange during the evening. As for stepping up and getting revenge, it sounds like a good idea but changes nothing. Punishment for opposition teams comes in the way of power-play goals.

MILAN LUCIC

I think the time has come to move the big man down the depth chart. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is coming back, placing the Nuge alongside CMD or LD on left-wing seems like an idea whose time has come. I wasn’t in favor of it previously but Leon has proven he can push the river, or at least battle it to a standstill. Todd McLellan likes to work in pairs, I’d suggest Nuge-McDavid and Draisaitl-Puljujarvi. It’s time.

JESSE PULJUJARVI

During the RE series I projected JP for 65gp, 14-14-28, he is on track to finish 65gp, 14-10-24 on the year. During that conversation, the subject of usage and playing time lead to me writing “my guess is that Peter Chiarelli would like Puljujarvi to make the team and show progress this season. That isn’t the same as Todd McLellan finding a way to win games with JP in the lineup this year though.” I think that tug-of-war is still going on.

FREE AGENTS

The storm is coming. In my article for The Athletic today, I look at the 21 free agents (RFA and UFA) this summer, and count one lock and three solid bets. The river of blood is going to be massive.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy show today, lots of cool things to discuss. Scheduled to appear:

  • Bob Nightengale, USA Today. Baseball’s spring training is underway and the players are mad as hell about small markets not spending money.
  • Kirk Luedeke, Director of player personnel, Omaha Lancers. Kirk knows players and we’ll ask him about the newest Oiler, J.D. Dudek.
  • Jonathan Willis, The Athletic. Oilers last night and Oilers over the summer.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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244 Responses to "The secret life of plants"

« Older Comments
  1. Wilde says:

    Bank Shot: I’m fine with taking a chance on Ortega. Its not like the Oilers haven’t taken a flyer on Rajalas and Omarks before.

    How Gourde comes out of barely being able to play in the AHL to killing the NHL is beyond me. Seems like eveything Tampa touches lately turns to gold.

    It will be interesting to see if Gourde is a Petr Prucha or someone that has sustain in the league.
    Cory Conacher had a good run for Tampa too then got traded for Bishop and disappeared.

    Conacher is flat out fuckin’ bizarre.

    Here’s his shooting percentages and points per 60 at evens:

    TBL 12/13: 2.87/60 / / 16.7%
    OTT 12/13: 2.27/60 / / 14.3%

    OTT 13/14: 1.86/60 / / 5.9%
    BUF 13/14: 1.28/60 / / 8.7%

    NYI 14/15: 0.97/60 / / 4.6%

    TBL 16/17: 1.68/60 / / 0.0% <- lol

    TBL 17/18: 1.96/60 / / 15.63 <- aaaand there we go.

    That looks like a literal 5 year "slump" but in those 5 years he only got aabout 1166 minutes on the ice, total. Over all 5. Yeah.

    For reference, Connor McDavid played 1310:54 at 5v5 last year alone.

  2. digger50 says:

    Answer my own question. I think the easiest way to get better is to keep the roster and swap out the coach.

    That could be the quickest way to move 15 spots up the standings.

    As for GM, he simply is bad at negotiating. There is enough evidence. So how “not to get worse” is absolutely limiting his trades so that he cannot do further damage.

    Those are the two biggest moves this off season that will bring in the biggest returns.

  3. Melvis says:

    bendelson: It’s all very emotional…

    Yeah. I needed some fresh air, so took to flogging some Bendelson 500’s door to door. They’d go like hotcakes if anybody but the dogs actually answered their door.

    Anyway:

    “What’s a Bendelson 500”?

    It’s a MacGuffin.

    “What’s a MacGuffin/?

    It’s ten bucks and more fun than a dried out chocolate mint Girl Guide cookie.

    “I’ll take one.”

    I’d suggest adding a © on that handle. And kindly send me a truckload. It’ll pay for the tequila and beer backs.

  4. Gayfish says:

    digger50:
    So. Right now is it fair to say the Oilers have become worse?With the departure of theee players at the trade deadline?

    So we need to bring or internally fill :
    – in one fourth line utility center
    – one good depth defender
    – one 20 goal winger

    Just to maintain where we are at. ( true maybe we were not quite the bottom team we ended up but… maybe we were)

    So how do we reacquire those assets we just sent out?If it’s just through internal tryouts that didn’t go so well as a plan last summer. So I’m curious how this will be done.

    Then how do we actually get much better?I don’t see trading Klefbom or Nuge making us better. Our GM does one for one deals, and does not do them well. So if we are lucky we swap one good player out for another good player.Does that make us better?

    Should be able to sign several tweener/ahl wingers, and since probabilities sum, one of them will turn into a top 6 forward.

  5. OmJo says:

    RE: the Refs.

    A few months back, I half-jokingly posted my conspiracy theory than Bettman has a personal vendetta against the Oilers for winning the McDavid lottery and the referees and “war room” are told to screw this team over when the opportunity arises.

    Ofc that is nearly impossible to do, and the risk of this getting leaked would have unforseen consequences that the NHL may never overcome. The benefits don’t outweigh the risks by any means.

    But I really don’t know how to explain the clusterfuck that is NHL officiating.

    281:22 is how much time we’ve spent on the PP this season. 31st in the NHL. Hard to believe when the team has Connor McDavid on it that they’ve drawn the fewest penalties in the NHL.

    Toronto is 30th with 296:17.

  6. Wilde says:

    Jesus Christ, Bergevin’s ask for Pacioretty was apparently Toffoli, Vilardi, 1st, plus.

    Talk about the other end of the spectrum.

  7. OmJo says:

    Wilde:
    Jesus Christ, Bergevin’s ask for Pacioretty was apparently Toffoli, Vilardi, 1st, plus.

    Talk about the other end of the spectrum.

    The same idiot who traded Subban for Weber, #oneforone?

  8. OriginalPouzar says:

    OmJo:
    If Chiarelli is worried about a Nurse offer sheet, be prepared for an overpay.

    Those Russell and Lucic contracts are going to cost this team in the years to come.

    In hindsight, since he didn’t use the cap space anyway, I think I would have rather General Disappointment signed Russel to a 1 year $6M contract than a 4×4 with NMC. Sigh.

    The created cap space from the Eberle deal was not just for the 2017/18 season but for the next few seasons as well and that cap space is already spent in future seasons.

    Management only had the ability to spend the cap space on a One-year commitment – tough to sign a player to one ear, a material player.

    The plan was clear, to evaluate where an in season upgrade was needed and make an acquisition mid-season.

    Of course, the season went off the rails before that type of deal could be made and “buying” was no longer a valid option.

  9. Nix says:

    Scungilli Slushy:
    I believe he has a back condition, Scheuermann’s disease. It’s what caused the curve he has. It can’t be easy playing with probably reduced movement. It didn’t seem to affect him much previously, but he has a lot of hard miles on him.

    Wasn’t aware…thanks man. He seems to have limited motion just turning his neck so this explains a lot. Is this the out we need? Not to be cruel but if Peter bought damaged goods then Lous doctor needs to be called asap.

  10. Professor Q says:

    OmJo:
    You can’t make this shit up: https://twitter.com/NHL/status/968712940617641986

    It’s almost like they did it on purpose.

  11. StixMalone says:

    OmJo:
    You can’t make this shit up: https://twitter.com/NHL/status/968712940617641986

    Terrible. I hate saying this but wait till it happens to one of their players. Sometimes that’s what it takes to shut up those ass wipes. Always cool to talk trash till Karma comes around….

  12. OmJo says:

    Professor Q: It’s almost like they did it on purpose.

    I mean, if that isn’t a spit in the face, I don’t know what is.

    I hope somebody asks TMac about this tweet before the next game.

  13. OmJo says:

    StixMalone: Terrible. I hate saying this but wait till it happens to one of their players. Sometimes that’s what it takes to shut up those ass wipes. Always cool to talk trash till Karma comes around….

    That was the NHL’s twitter feed, not the Sharks? I’m not sure who you mean by their players. Crosby?

  14. OilClog says:

    OmJo: That was the NHL’s twitter feed, not the Sharks? I’m not sure who you mean by their players. Crosby?

    Maybe he means the refs, this big of a screw job has to be bagged up by every other owner.

    My scenario paints as is..

    Burke pacing in his barn angry by himself

    Oilers win Mcdavid

    Burke’s barn is full of angry owners

    Master plan is hatched, Chia’s A agent in disguise gutting out the talent built up. Grows a moustache has a fairy tale run that was clearly all pre planned by Burke’s angry crew of thugs.

    Coach is paid to kill talent and look the other way, promised a sweet piece of mountain in the Hope valley.

    Refs held out at first, integrity is costly, thugs show up with a triple bag stack and well here we are.

  15. leadfarmer says:

    The Lucic contract was one that was getting bought out in 2020 from the day it was signed. We just need to get a few productive years from him before then. The bigger question is if you can trade him with 50% retention do you or do you bank on compliance buyout in 2020

  16. HT Joe says:

    Bank Shot: I see people calling out the media on their treatment of Horcoff. What?
    I remember a newspaper article titled Captain Everything!
    Fans sure hated Horcoff but I don’t recall the media vilifying him. It was the fans.

    I remember media slamming Horcoff for being a $7M man, but for the life of me, I cannot find a link that works…

  17. StixMalone says:

    OmJo: That was the NHL’s twitter feed, not the Sharks? I’m not sure who you mean by their players. Crosby?

    Wow . I honestly thought those were Sharks Fans beakin off. Wow whole new scenario. Dotards! Did I do that right?

  18. HT Joe says:

    OmJo: I hope somebody asks TMac about this tweet before the next game.

    Why? He would only downplay it.

  19. --hudson-- says:

    For a different perspective, look at all of the missed calls in a Sharks-Vegas game from 3 weeks ago.
    https://streamable.com/vg41q

  20. --hudson-- says:

    Here’s a bunch of missed calls for the Sharks-Coyotes game 2 weeks ago.
    https://streamable.com/a444v

    I don’t believe there was a conspiracy last night. Just the NHL officials make a lot of mistakes and they’re trained to manage games.

    If that hit on Benning happens in Edmonton, it’s going to get called. We all know it.

  21. Professor Q says:

    –hudson–:
    Here’s a bunch of missed calls for the Sharks-Coyotes game 2 weeks ago.
    https://streamable.com/a444v

    I don’t believe there was a conspiracy last night.Just the NHL officials make a lot of mistakes and they’re trained to manage games.

    If that hit on Benning happens in Edmonton, it’s going to get called.We all know it.

    No we don’t. Because this shyte happens in Edmonton, too.

  22. gregsaint says:

    Nate Schmidt is clearly 10x classier than Evander Kane – called the trainers over instead of turning around and scoring.

  23. Dominoiler says:

    Wrt Nuge to LW, i remain in the ‘Play him 2 C’ camp but it does make sense to at least see him on the wing for a bit..

    Imo 1- CmD w Drai / 2- Nuge is better than CmD w Nuge / Drai.. problem is there are no good wingers, especially if Pulj is sent out w the 4th line.. Nuge has been handcuffed w lucic much of the year and he still producing a career year.. CmD w Drai is elite x 2.. but yeah, at this point it is worth starting training camp now, try some new things, so it doesn’t extend 20 games into next season like it has these last few years..

  24. OmJo says:

    –hudson–:
    Here’s a bunch of missed calls for the Sharks-Coyotes game 2 weeks ago.
    https://streamable.com/a444v

    I don’t believe there was a conspiracy last night.Just the NHL officials make a lot of mistakes and they’re trained to manage games.

    If that hit on Benning happens in Edmonton, it’s going to get called.We all know it.

    It was in Edmonton when McDavid was getting hacked, slashed, punched and held by a Panthers player with no call on the ice.

    In case some would like a refresher: https://twitter.com/OilersNation/status/963245459446747137?s=19

  25. SwedishPoster says:

    Does Lucic’s NMC include him not being moved out of the top 6? Asking for a friend.

  26. --hudson-- says:

    Professor Q: No we don’t. Because this shyte happens in Edmonton, too.

    OmJo: It was in Edmonton when McDavid was getting hacked, slashed, punched and held by a Panthers player with no call on the ice.

    In case some would like a refresher: https://twitter.com/OilersNation/status/963245459446747137?s=19

    Fair enough, I shouldn’t have said the home team always gets the advantage. Obviously the Sharks clips are both at home and the Panthers at Edmonton was also at home.

    But you don’t honestly believe there is a conspiracy against the Oilers do you?

  27. danny says:

    –hudson–:
    Fair enough, I shouldn’t have said the home team always gets the advantage.Obviously the Sharks clips are both at home and the Panthers at Edmonton was also at home.

    But you don’t honestly believe there is a conspiracy against the Oilers do you?

    That wasn’t a missed call, it was a no-call. Big difference. And there’s a significant amount of no-calls with the Oilers this season (see exhibit 97).

    I don’t subscribe to conspiracy talk, and wouldn’t use that word here, but I’d suggest there’s enough evidence to consider there’s a bias against the Oilers. Years ago there was a clear bias in the NHL where young teams didn’t get the calls that veteran players/teams did… so bias has precedent in the NHL, but for the life of me I cannot understand why these things are happening so frequently to the Oilers? Between the challenges/interference / and no-calls, it has become a spectacle.

  28. OmJo says:

    –hudson–:
    Fair enough, I shouldn’t have said the home team always gets the advantage.Obviously the Sharks clips are both at home and the Panthers at Edmonton was also at home.

    But you don’t honestly believe there is a conspiracy against the Oilers do you?

    I don’t know how to explain it.

  29. Andy Dufresne says:

    leadfarmer:
    The Lucic contract was one that was getting bought out in 2020 from the day it was signed. We just need to get a few productive years from him before then.The bigger question is if you can trade him with 50% retention do you or do you bank on compliance buyout in 2020

    Yes. Been saying for awhile, it is the coaches job to get $4million dollars per year of value out of Lucic until the compliance buyout in 2020 or the fire sale a year later where you move him to a team trying to reach the cap. Im pretty sure you can pay his 2021 bonus then move him in season. If this true, the purchsing team is going to have to pay him only $3.33 million per year and claim a cap hit of $6million per year. Its as good as a compliance buyout. Worst case scenario you agree to retain $1m illion. It still almost like a compliance buyout.

  30. VOR says:

    –hudson–:
    Fair enough, I shouldn’t have said the home team always gets the advantage.Obviously the Sharks clips are both at home and the Panthers at Edmonton was also at home.

    But you don’t honestly believe there is a conspiracy against the Oilers do you?

    Hudson, I don’t think there is a conspiracy against the Oilers.

    The Oilers may be the victims of some long standing biases. For example their is a well established (like published in peer reviewed and highly respected journals established) bias against road teams in the NHL. It is among the largest road/home biases ever discovered in officiating in sport. The ticky-tacky calls go in your favor at home and against you on the road.

    To understand why that would particularly effect the Oilers we need to look at other biases. If you are the aggressor in period one at home you are likely to draw penalties in that period but the first period aggressor gets fewer calls against in the next two periods. This is particularly true for the home team.

    I’d argue the Oilers frequently come out hard in period one at home take penalties, get scored on and stop being aggressive thus losing the home ice advantage. They get screwed when they are on the road just like ever other team.

    Add to that the NHLs long standing bias against young generational players where they get mugged multiple times again. The only known defence is a killer power play and aging. Veteran stars get all the calls including ones they shouldn’t. It isn’t right but this sort of see no evil, hear no evil, speak no evil officiating has cursed all the generational players I have seen in my lifetime.

    There is no need to invoke conspiracies. The biases are bad enough and explain everything we are seeing. And the Oilers horrible special teams leave them in a position of vulnerability as does a lack of players who draw more penalties than they take.

  31. mustang says:

    I don’t buy into the conspiracy. I can’t imagine the NHL wants the Oilers to win the lottery again. I’m sure there’s nothing they would like more than never to see them in that position again, I’m guessing they would rather showcase 97 and 29.

    Bias, I believe happens. but not just to the Oilers but watch a flames game with an unbiased eye and see the abuse Gaudreau takes, my gawd he gets it. I think Lucic rep lives on and nobody wants to feel the wrath of 27

  32. leadfarmer says:

    Andy Dufresne,

    The part I don’t get is the taking and making a pass. The scouting reports on him were that he’s a pretty good passer and that part of the skill set just doesn’t instantly die. Yeah he is slow but he is Pavelski slow so that narrative that he is too slow isn’t quite right. He doesn’t get involved in the physical battles. I know I should be just yelling boo at him, but I’m guessing he’s playing with broken bones in his hand. I know I’ve been saying Lucic is not the Lucic type player we should be trying to get long before he came here but he is not this bad. I’m guessing we will hear about a hand issue in the offseason and they didn’t want to make it public so he doesn’t get whacked at it every 5 sec

  33. JimmyV1965 says:

    leadfarmer:
    Andy Dufresne,

    The part I don’t get is the taking and making a pass.The scouting reports on him were that he’s a pretty good passer and that part of the skill set just doesn’t instantly die. Yeah he is slow but he is Pavelski slow so that narrative that he is too slow isn’t quite right.He doesn’t get involved in the physical battles.I know I should be just yelling boo at him, but I’m guessing he’s playing with broken bones in his hand.I know I’ve been saying Lucic is not the Lucic type player we should be trying to get long before he came here but he is not this bad.I’m guessing we will hear about a hand issue in the offseason and they didn’t want to make it public so he doesn’t get whacked at it every 5 sec

    Agreed. Lucic is slow, but he’s not this bad. He’s totally off his game.

  34. OmJo says:

    I wonder how Canadian teams in general fare with bad and/or missed calls especially when playing against American teams.

    Now, I could be biased in seeing this (ironic, hey?) but it seems it’s mostly Canadian teams that get the shaft by the refs, at least the notable ones.

  35. OriginalPouzar says:

    Big test for the Oilers tonight.

    Preds are proving why they went to the SCF last year – one of the best teams in the league and on a 5 game winning streak.

    I look for the Oilers to compete for a full 60 minutes.

    There was no media avail yesterday so not sure if Benning has any consequences from the Kane hit and I heard rumblings that Larsson we headed back to Sweden for his dad’s funeral but don’t know if that is true or not – just spitballing on if we might see Ethan Bear in the lineup tonight.

    Go Oilers!

  36. flyfish1168 says:

    danny: That wasn’t a missed call, it was a no-call. Big difference. And there’s a significant amount of no-calls with the Oilers this season (see exhibit 97).

    I don’t subscribe to conspiracy talk, and wouldn’t use that word here, but I’d suggest there’s enough evidence to consider there’s a bias against the Oilers. Years ago there was a clear bias in the NHL where young teams didn’t get the calls that veteran players/teams did… so bias has precedent in the NHL, but for the life of me I cannot understand why these things are happening so frequently to the Oilers? Between the challenges/interference / and no-calls, it has become a spectacle.

    I believe night to night the reffing is so different and fustrating. But at the end of it all they don’t want to call every single shot McDavid takes or it will look like the league is protecting him. That is why he needs to be able to defend himself. I also do feel there is merit that US teams get a little leeway and also home teams. At the end of the game you rarely see a team getting 2 penalizes more than the other team even though the deserve it. Good example was the Ducks the other night. Also look at tkachuk each game he can easily get 3 or 4 calls against him, but if they call all of them then it will look as if the refs are picking on him. The Kane hit on Benning is just inexcusable, that was a blatant dangerous hit.

  37. OriginalPouzar says:

    Its heartwarming to see that the flames game turned on a bad penalty by Tkachuk (and not his only bad penalty in the game).

  38. russ99 says:

    digger50:
    Answer my own question. I think the easiest way to get better is to keep the roster and swap out the coach.

    The roster is deficient on both ends of the ice. Changing the coach will help, but we have to change the roster too.

    We can’t go through another 3 years of losing while the prospect pool catches up, not only is it an unconscionable ask of the fans, McDavid will ask for a trade.

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

    TSN Headline mentions Hall’s Hart Trophy worthy February stats as 14 GMs 9-10-19

    Some other young whipper snapper managed to run up 14 13-8-21 in the same month… wonder who that whippersnapper could be

  40. frjohnk says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!:
    TSN Headline mentions Hall’s Hart Trophy worthy February stats as 14 GMs 9-10-19

    Some other young whipper snapper managed to run up 14 13-8-21 in the same month… wonder who that whippersnapper could be

    Barzal?

  41. frjohnk says:

    Lowetide:
    For The Athletic: Are we any closer to identifying McDavid’s RW?

    https://theathletic.com/257249/2018/03/01/lowetide-are-we-any-closer-to-finding-connor-mcdavids-right-winger/

    Part II ” Are we any closer to finding McDavids left winger?” coming next week.

  42. godot10 says:

    SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!:
    TSN Headline mentions Hall’s Hart Trophy worthy February stats as 14 GMs 9-10-19

    Some other young whipper snapper managed to run up 14 13-8-21 in the same month… wonder who that whippersnapper could be

    I think you have to make the playoffs to be a serious candidate for the Hart Trophy. Also at least win a few games.

    Leading your team to victory in the Dahlen sweepstakes does not count.

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