Time to be a Fan

That’s Derek Sanderson with a step on Orr, about 1970. I think this photo (I believe it’s training camp) is a nice item to post today because this is going to be a season where enjoying the game for what it is becomes the prudent thing to do.

The Edmonton Oilers look for all the world like a team that is on its way to a lottery selection, and if that happens Kevin Lowe is probably gone and a new regime will arrive in Edmonton to pick up the pieces.

I don’t really think there’s much sense at this point in time talking about the playoffs or who is going to play 2line right wing. One is a fantasy, and the other has multiple answers with the final one probably a year away.

Here’s what I’m looking forward to this fall:

  • A complete recovery by Fernando Pisani, a guy who worked too hard and came from too far back to lose his career now.
  • The emergence of Marc Pouliot as an NHL regular.
  • Ales Hemsky stepping forward into the 90 point plateau.
  • Shawn Horcoff working his ass off every night. Again.
  • Raffi Torres delivering oddly impressive numbers that are slightly out of focus with the on-ice appearance.
  • Dustin Penner fitting in.
  • JF Jacques getting a point, and then another.
  • Andrew Cogliano, Sam Gagner, Slava Trukhno and a plethora of other fine prospects.
  • Dwayne Roloson playing hard every night, the modern Gilles Meloche.
  • Ladislav Smid getting better.
  • Steve Staios delvering again.
  • Sheldon Souray’s big shot.
  • Joni Pitkanen. Man I’m looking forward to seeing him play.
  • Craig MacTavish and his lines and pairings.

The Edmonton Oilers are coming to town. Time to be a fan, and stop thinking so much.

It’s not going to help.

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18 Responses to "Time to be a Fan"

  1. Oilman says:

    Be careful Lowetide….I got chewed out pretty severely over at MC79′s place for suggesting pretty much the same thing….I won’t name any names but he shares the first name of my daughter and the last name of Magnum PI’s car…..too cryptic?

  2. Lowetide says:

    oilman: I enjoy Vic’s posts and if he can offer some insight it’ll be welcomed.

  3. Oilman says:

    I guess I wan’t too cryptic:o)
    But seriously, this was a good post…everyone can pretty much see what the Oilers are this year – as a fan, all you can do is 1. enjoy the 30odd wins, 2. try not to kill anyone after the 40odd losses, and 3. perhaps try not to be in the presence of too many Calgary fans (to make sure you can stick to suggestion #2)

  4. Lowetide says:

    oilman: Exactly. I’ve invested in a new beer fridge and a punching bag.

    I’m ready.

  5. Oilman says:

    good ideas both…

    and a fantastic blog site BTW….really have been enjoying your stuff since I stumbled onto it last winter.

  6. Chris says:

    Yea, I think we can all see how this team has the possibility of being underwhelming. On the other hand, I think simply focussing on the negative and writing off the season in late August/ early September is rather curmudgeonly. While I appreciate that the past gives us some good predictors of future performance, its not a terribly precise thing. There is always the unpredictable – as you mention this might be the year Raffi Torres puts it goether. Jarret Stoll might be healthy and look like the guy who went head to head with Patrick Marleau in the playoffs and looked the better of the two. Hemsky might take that leap into an elite level of performance. Souray, Pitaken and Hemsky might be 3/5s of one of the top powerplays in the NHL. Souray might learn to be more mobile on defense. Dustin Penner may play like Bertuzzi or LeClair in their primes.

    Robert Nilson might be half as good as his father was. Brodziak, Thorenson, Jacques or one of the other young roleplayers might emerge as a quality NHLer.

    Roloson may have partaken from the same fountain of youth that Chelios has.

    Sure we’re likely not going to get all the breaks we would like. However, its still too early to really effectively rule out the possibility. Assuming everything is going to go horribly and utterly wrong may be a way to avoid dissapointment – however, its also a rather joyless state to go through life in.

  7. IceDragoon says:

    We have 49 players under contract.

    The NHL allows us to have a maximum of 50 players under contract.

    We need 2-3 more NHLers under contract.

    Aaarrrggghhh!!!

    ah, yes…
    balance…

    ;-)

  8. Dennis says:

    If Lowe’s let go, then it will all be worth it.

  9. PunjabiOil says:

    We have 49 players under contract

    _______

    See how stupid those 3-4 AHL depth guy signings appear to be?

  10. ToTheBank says:

    Went to the Canada/Russia game in S’toon tonight to Mr. Gagner in person, came away very impressed. Saw Him Good? Probably, but its pretty clear that he has Sutter’s trust and that has to be a good sign.

    Also, that Brandon kid reminds me a lot of that guy who used to play for the Oil, you know, the one with the crooked nose and the mullet?

  11. ClaytonMagnet says:

    Oilman said:

    and 3. perhaps try not to be in the presence of too many Calgary fans (to make sure you can stick to suggestion #2)

    I am a born and bred Oiler fan living in Calgary, so I get the gears at work every day during the season. Don’t even talk to me about last year. But truth is, I love when a Calgary fan decides to step up and say something. Being a fan is about wearing your Oilers tshirt to work the day after Calgary beats them, and having everyone wonder how you can cheer for a team when it’s losing so bad… ’cause God knows, they wouldn’t. I liked this post LT. Go Oilers.

  12. Nelson88 says:

    LT.

    Pisani hurts on many levels!! However, they are not a lottery team. they will be a competitive 7th – 10 th team that is fun to watch. being a straight fan is not a bad thing.

  13. Black Dog says:

    Most of all good health to Fernando.

    I’m looking forward to the season – it likely won’t be pretty but it will be our ugly, dammit!

  14. Slipper says:

    I find the best therapy is to follow the season, game for game, on the xbox. I’ll just pound the opposition’s pixeled counterparts 13-0 after every real game.

    And beleive me, by EA standards, the Oilers’ defence is smoking HAHT. It’s like 5 Bobby Orr’s and Matt Greene.

  15. IceDragoon says:

    PunjabiOil…

    We have no idea what requirements the Springfield owners placed on the Oilers. Perhaps they insisted on ‘X’ number of AHL vets. The Oilers primary goal may be to develop their prospects, but the owners want to win/put butts in the seats.

    Regardless… every team has the same ’50 contracts’ limit. As with other CBA restrictions, I’m sure there’ll be some stressful fancy footwork from complying GMs.

    Louise

  16. oilerdiehard says:

    A lot of the AHL depth guys were signed to straight AHL deals. Do those count against our limit?

    I do know from visiting a Falcons board being cheap and not signing any AHL vet types was part of what management and especially fans seemed angry about with Tampa. So ID’s thoughts above might well be true.

  17. PunjabiOil says:

    A lot of the AHL depth guys were signed to straight AHL deals. Do those count against our limit?

    _________

    That’s a good question. I’m leaning towards those not counting against our limit.

    If not, Lowe really can’t do anything more. He’s at 49 spots – signing that Russian kid, Gagner, and Johnson would be tough without utilizing the waivers wire.

  18. IceDragoon says:

    I’m pretty sure (not positive) that the 50 contract maximum does include AHL signings.

    Louise

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