Words are Mere Playthings

This is Kevin Lowe settling under a popfly. It prepared him for media scrums in good old Our Town, where line drives and bullets and screamers are verboten.

Today’s paper’s have some truly incredible quotes. Here are two:

  1. “When you get right down to it, the Pronger trade now is Dustin Penner and Joni Pitkanen and Ladi. That’s a trade I’d make again.” Kevin Lowe can say this because logic, math and common sense are also suspended when he is in the room. I daresay the Pope and Bono don’t hold sway like the man from Lachute.
  2. “What happened was, all of a sudden, we got a lot of defencemen. We traded for Grebeshkov. We signed (Dick) Tarnstrom. We traded for Pitkanen. We signed (Sheldon) Souray. Then, I’m thinking, ‘Holy mackerel, we’ve got a lot of guys here.’” Oh come ON! I need to see him saying this because if he said it with a straight face then he truly is a once-in-a-generation bullshitter. This is Nixon territory, folks. “I am not a crook”, that kind of thing. “WE’VE GOT A LOT OF GUYS HERE”!!!!! That’s what he said? Come freaking on. The reporter must have giggled, or maybe they pulled their head back and hit the wall, thus passing out.

Here’s the reality:

  1. Kevin Lowe made a bad bet on the Pronger deal, fully believing that 5 assets of lesser value would be equal to waiting and getting something useful that addressed roster needs.
  2. Kevin Lowe (and possibly Cal Nichols) decided Ryan Smyth was no longer sponge worthy, possibly because they didn’t feel he was man enough in G7 SCF, or maybe because he hit Mike Commodore’s head on the Jason Smith 2-on-1 in G1 SCF (all hands have been thrown over from that rush btw). Either way, they were D.O.A. in regard to signing Smyth somewhere near the deadline and made out like bandits based on where they would have been negotiation-wise just a few hours later.
  3. Dustin Penner was option D, E or F in the “let’s get this assclown Katz off the front pages, he’s ruining our money laundering Arena Plan” but they paid him in full anyway. The modern Chuck Lefley needs to stand and deliver and then some in order to make that signing look good.
  4. The actual trade is Chris Pronger + Jason Smith + 1st in a deep draft + 2nd in a deep draft + 2nd in a good draft + 3rd in a deep draft for an overpaid Penner, an inconsistent but gifted Pitkanen, a developing defender in Smid, a spent force in Sanderson, a 3rd to replace the 2nd, a nobody in Rouke, and a fine young prospect who has a wide range of skills in Nash.

I’m sure all this will be in the late editions.

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57 Responses to "Words are Mere Playthings"

  1. danny says:

    your qualifiers, in the trade breakdown, (deep draft, overpaid penner, inconsistent but gifted pitkanen ) smacks mightily like the dailies you’re ridiculing.

    How about evening up the other side a bit to keep the integrity intact.. that is what you were getting at right?

    Chris demanding a trade pronger + Jason cant clear the zone smith + 5 draft picks (whats the batting percentage on the draft again?)

    I’m with you on the penner move being prompted as much by EIG cosmeticians as much as NHL smarts, but suffice to say the EIG giving a green light to make that move, does not mean it wasn’t something Lowe wouldn’t have considered doing.

    The percentages of Burke winning that transaction doesn’t look good for him unless the Oilers are completely abysmal this season and they get a top 5 pick. Still no discounts on those contracts though. Lets say the top 5 pick becomes an NHLer at 19yrs old, and gets 30 goals… He becomes a $3.5M per year player due to bonuses etc and is on the open market in 3 seasons.

    Keep the picks and tank this season you say? Sorry, Penner isn’t a lost cause, and thats the only way I could side with you on that one. You’d swear we traded the 3 picks for Shayne Corson.

  2. ClaytonMagnet says:

    Man, what is up with Lowe? He’s not far from jumping around on Oprah’s couch screaming “I love Matt Greene!”

  3. digger says:

    I can’t say I’m on board with everything you’re lamenting here LT, but one thing I am with you on…

    How the hell does a Dustin Penner offer sheet become part of the Chris Pronger trade? I’ve been trying to wrap my head around that little nugget since last night, and it’s still an enigma wrapped in mystery.

    I suppose there’s a very tenuous thread linking them if you consider they used one of the Anaheim picks to get back their own pick w/ Rourke so it could be thrown in with the offer sheet, but IMO that’s still a reach.

    I have to say, I can’t think of any season where I’ve had as much trepidation at the start of it as this one…usually I have a decent feel on how the team’s going to look once the bullets start flying for real, but with this iteration I can’t get a solid feel for them. It’s like trying to herd cats.

  4. Josh says:

    Digger: I know if you were to question Lowe about how the Penner offer sheet is part of the Pronger trade his only response would have to be cap room. I can see where he’d be going with that, but its still not the same. And really a 2 million dollar difference b/t those players makes me puke my cheerios.

  5. Oilman says:

    If it’s cap room, you may as well include Souray and Tarnstrom in there as well…and Markanen for Garon. I love the Oil, but I hate spin.

  6. MetroGnome says:

    Great post LT. Quotable and insightful.

  7. godot10 says:

    Yeah…but the indirect consequences of the Pronger demanding to be traded, and Smyth going for the money are Penner and Gagner.

    Chris F. Pronger + Jason Smith + Ryan Smyth + a 1st + 2nd + 3rd


    Dustin Penner + Joni Pitkanen + Lady Smid + Geoff Sanderson + Robert Nilsson + Ryan O’Marra + three 1sts + 2nd

    plus sucking enough to get Sam Gagner and the cap space to sign Sheldon Souray

    The net to the Oilers will be very good in a couple of years.

    The Pronger deal was under duress. Playing hardball would have destroyed the Oilers reputation amongst the NHLPA.

    I think the on ice results this year will show that the Oilers will be well on the way of recovering from the Pronger fiasco.

  8. PunjabiOil says:

    This blog entry is eerily similar to the thread I posted on HF last night.
    Coincidental timing ;)

    I’m just playing around.

    Have to agree with everything said. As for the defence, Smith, Hedja, and Tjarnqvist weren’t brought back, so naturally, you’d bring in replacements (Souray, Pitkanen, Tarnstrom). Wow, add in Gilbert,and we have only 2 defenceman back from opening night 2006.

  9. Andy Grabia says:

    We love the Oilers. We’ll give them our support and money no matter what they do.

    Joe & Suzie Edmonton

  10. Bank Shot says:

    Kevin Lowe on the D situation,

    “So there I was cleaning the living room see….and I flipped over the cushions on the couch and a few defensemen just fell right out. I’ll be damned if I know where they came from… I’ve been drinking alot lately see and…..”

  11. mattwatt says:

    Did Lowe really say that. “WHOA, I have a lot of defencemen!!” True brilliance.

    I expect Jeff Spicoli to make comments like this, not someone running a NHL franchise.

  12. rickibear says:

    You forget that St.Louis moved Pronger based on the mess that was St.Louis. That makes the Pronger in and out a wash because they were both duress moves.
    Put Brewer, Lynch, and Woywitka were Prongers name is.

    These same conversations occured in the comments section of one of LT’s post 4-6 weeks ago.

    PJoil: I would have liked Hedja over Greene.
    Thank heavens we are not the same. It was not enjoyable watching forwards circle back along the boards to pick up a puck cycled to the other side by a Dman.

    This whole Jason Smith discussion.:
    I was in the Drumheller Extra Foods deli section and had my son dressed up in oilers garb. A guy walked up with an oilers hat on and we talked for about 10 min. and got on to the subject of Jason Smith. He said we may not have him this year and intimated that he was related through marriage. Stated that Jason Smith had privately asked for a trade.

    Went to work the next day and told An oiler fan at work about the converstion. Telling him
    I took the converstion with a grain of salt.

    I tought about posting it during one of LT’s comment sections. Choose not too.

    About a week later He and Lupul were gone. I still did not post this during the trade discussions.

    Was it a BS story from a guy in a store with a strange coincidence. All I Know is it Skews my perspective when Jason Smith is discussed.

  13. Gnash says:

    As we all know, public relations is a much greater concern in professional sports than it is for most businesses. We’re all well aware of the cultural importance of pro sports and the marketing will play on that angle.
    To be fair, and less cynical, we should offer sincere thanks to the members of pro sports organizations for their efforts in community events and fundraising.

    Even considering all of the above, Mr. Lowe is clearly pushing spin past the point of credulity. My impression is that the entire organization is working very hard at the moment to shift attitudes over to a sense of optimism and that involves encouraging all of us to put the past behind us.

    I admit that I have a tough time jumping on board with the plans for the season opener, but I see that as my own failing. I am too cynical and lazy to get excited about dressing up and hanging around the red carpet. I can see how this might work though and I expect to see pre-game video tonight featuring alot of smiling faces – a bit like watching Backstreet Boys on Live@Much.

    So, what’s my point? If we disregard the downtown arena issue, is there really anything wrong with the Oilers trying to put a positive spin on things? Don’t they just want happy consumers?

  14. Steve says:

    Oh, come on, Lowetide. You’ve had all summer to post your “well-informed arguments” and “carefully defended criticisms”. Now it’s opening night, and the Oilers haven’t lost a game all season. Couldn’t we get just one “WHHOOOOOOOOO!!!11!!!” from you?

  15. Dennis says:

    A long, long time ago, an angry young man from Newfoundland said that being the GM of the Oilers was one of teh easiest jobs in sports because you never ever had to awnser any of your moves through the media.

    That guy’s older now but he’s never been more right.

    Those Lowq quotes are out of this world bold.

  16. godot10 says:

    GM’s have to spin and to “lie” in public, because it is a political job in part. Lowe is no better nor worse than any other GM in this respect.

    It is not unique to Edmonton, or to hockey.

    Coaches have more of an ability to tell the truth.

  17. Oiler_Kiwi says:

    Just want to say thanks to LT and all the other Oilers bloggers and posters. I have really enjoyed reading the thoughts, opinions and analogies posted here by LT and others. (Just like to say a special hi to Dennis BTW).

    I have had a busy year getting married for a second time (and last time) in March.

    My wife and I will be watching Oilers games live or on tape delay over the course of the season. I hope to post some observations from across the pond here in Scotland on the games I do see.

    Finally I’d like LT to do me a favour and post a picture of Stan Weir if possible before the game tonight. Did he ever play with any notable Oilers rookies? Maybe some of the wisdom and experience of Stan can rub off on the inexperienced Oilers tonight. Hopefully they can play beyond their years and surprise us all?


  18. Dennis says:

    I don’t know about that, GD, but I know that this ratio of “most baldfaced lies to actually being asked any questions of merit”, has to be one of the highest, if not THE highest, in pro sports.

  19. danny says:

    Ok if Lowe had the option of keeping Pronger, which he didn’t, what would the team be today?

    Ryan Smyth would still be gone. This was pre-Katz, and the EIG purse strings had nobody to impress heading into last seasons negotiaitions, CFPs $6M put them at the internal budget.

    Today we have Pronger and Smith… We likely don’t have Pitkanen, Penner, Souray, Sanderson, Smid or Gagner.

    It’s more complicated than that, but as with Lowes comment, acknowledging that it’s not entirely correct doesn’t make it entirely wrong.

  20. Dennis says:

    In regards to tonight’s game, the Journal said Sanderson will “draw in” with 19-Brodz if Moreau can’t play so it looks like the Oilers were prepared to have Sanderson sit, along with most likely Jacques, if all hands were healthy going into Opening Night.

    Which I must say I’m pretty pleased about. Other than cutting Sanderson altogether and replacing him with Thor, I’d probably do the same as the Oilers are doing right now.

  21. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: My bet is Pouliot sits. I say thie because when I decided he wouldn’t make the team he did, so this is “George opposite” time for me with Pouliot. Even if he does play he’ll be bad.

    Punjabioil: I stole it from you at HF and did not give credit. I should have and was in a hurry but had time to type a lot of other crap and didn’t man up so I’m doing it now.

  22. Dennis says:

    Pronger’s making a little more than Souray and Penners’s making a little less than Smyth, and by little I mean that given the room we have left and what we could’ve signed Smyth for and what we’d signed Pronger for, we’d still have room to have kept both guys.

    The whole exusing Lowe for jumping quick on Pronger is a bunch of shit. Yashin pulled the same thing on the Sens and they just let the bugger wait. It would’ve been super-easy for Lowe to curry favour with Oilers fans while they made him wait, saying stuff like , “Chris has to wait until we get what we consider to be the best value for an asset of his capabilties.” The fans would’ve eaten that up.

  23. Dennis says:

    Looks like you’re right as per this possible lineup update from Maki via a Globe piece on Gagner:


    Of course that also makes it look like Moreau was slated to be on the 4th line with 89-13.

    Maki probably means that line three was supposed to be 18-19-Brodz with Sanderson helping out the kids but then there was a trickle down with Moreau’s injury. Or maybe the Journal got it wrong and Sanderson wasn’t really “drawing in”, which I think we all take to mean that he was originally a HS, and was instead getting bumped up the lineup.

    In any case, it appears that Pouliot was the 14th forward heading into tonight with JFJ being 13 if Moreau was healthy.

  24. danny says:

    I’m not making excuses for the deal he made at all. Burke raped him. The overall in/out isn’t as far off as what Lowe said though.

    The budget is different today (post Katz) and Smyth would remain an Oiler if hindsight meanmt anything… but it doesn’t.

    Smyths time in Edmonton was numbered because of the EIGs budgets, and managements opinion that he is ultimately a 1st line tweener earning 1st liner money.

  25. Dennis says:

    The Oilers decided early on taht Smyth wasn’t worth the trouble of addressing his situation early on.

    Once you give away Pronger for nothing and save money in the process, you don’t try and nickle and dime smyth as well

    Just dumb stuff that Lowe’s never been called on by anyone with a clue or a set of nuts

  26. godot10 says:

    //The whole exusing Lowe for jumping quick on Pronger is a bunch of shit. Yashin pulled the same thing on the Sens and they just let the bugger wait.//

    The media and hockey establishment hated Yashin. They adore Pronger.

    Playing hardball with Yashin was a slamdunk PR victory.

    Playing hardball with Pronger would have been a slamdunk PR disaster. It would have been popular in Edmonton, but the Oilers’ franchise and the city would have been hurt for decades.

    Getting rid of Pronger as fast as possible was the right thing to do. Too bad the deal wasn’t better, but we sort of ended up with Gagner because of all that, so I feel less bad about everything.

  27. Oilman says:

    When you look at the Pronger return and remember that TO offered Stajan and Kaberle, but Lowe wanted Steen instead and the deal fell through you really have to wonder what the hell was he thinking…hell, I’ve been convinced for a long time, ever since Pronger fled to Mexico, that Luongo could have been an Oiler with one phone call and Keenan would have still been screwing with the Panthers….there’s a great behind the scenes book regarding the 05-07 Oilers that’s just screaming to be written.

  28. oilerdiehard says:

    The reality is the Penner OS was only because of Katz in the newspapers. Wait I thought the oilogosphere conspiracy was that Souray was signed for that reason? I guess what ever is convenient and the fits the argument shall do.

    That part being labeled as reality seems without some kind evidence (or if it appears on enough blogs it becomes fact eventually?) just as out there as anything Lowe said.

  29. mc79hockey says:

    LT, you’re kind of eating my lunch here. I’m going to have a big post up shortly about something that happened 40 years ago that perfectly explains something happening today – I don’t like to send shots across your bow like this, but watch out.

    Agree with virtually every word of your post, of course.

    You forget that St.Louis moved Pronger based on the mess that was St.Louis. That makes the Pronger in and out a wash because they were both duress moves.
    Put Brewer, Lynch, and Woywitka were Prongers name is.

    Sure, it’s a wash if you ignore the fact that fate dropped a great leap forward into the Oilers lap which they then pissed away. What happened in St. Louis and whether they got a good deal there is irrelevant to the question of whether or not Lowe got a good return for Pronger.

  30. Oilman says:

    40 years ago the leafs won the cup – and have been forgiven ever since – is that what you are aluding too?

  31. Oilman says:

    Will Katz be in the papers when Forsberg decides he wants to play again – that would be sweet!;o)

  32. danny says:

    The spirit of those comments were to say we are here from there. was it not?

    Everyone and their dog is saying Lowe was raped by Burke in the deal… is that what this is fishing for? A Barbara Walters interview where Lowe sheds tears and mans up to the terrible return?

    His recovery since then has been on the positive side. If he had taken Kaberle and Stajan, are we a better team today?

  33. Dennis says:

    Yeah, it’s akin to excusing Lowe for banging two fat chicks just because he drilled one hot missus years ago.

  34. Oilman says:

    “If he had taken Kaberle and Stajan, are we a better team today?”


  35. Master Lok says:

    “.. that Luongo could have been an Oiler with one phone call.. “

    I’ve read from several sources that Keenan was only willing to trade Luongo for a starting goalie (in his mind Auld was one) in return plus other stuff. So the Pronger deal would not have worked.

  36. Vic Ferrari says:

    Wow! That’s hilarious.

    What in God’s name is he thinking? Is this a cry for help from Lowe? The alternative, that fans would actually believe this, well that seems like a hell of a stretch, but it’s certainly another possibility.

    Strange days, Lowetide.

  37. danny says:

    It’s probably more like making fun of his wife because he had a taste for plus sized women in high school.

    I guess the statement was Lowe excusing himself dropping the ball on the Pronger return… then yeah … Lowe shut the F up. Keep your neck off the block when it comes to that topic, why even bother really…

    Other than that, and unless you can show me that Horton Bouwmeester were offered and Lowe opted not to take them… today the ship has bailed a lot of the water it took on since CFPs mexican vacation.

    We’re here, from there… its not as disasterous as it seemed to be not so long ago.

  38. ClaytonMagnet says:

    Oilman – I think Keenan would’ve taken Pronger over Bertuzzi, but I think the handshake for Luongo was probably done before Pronger even asked for a trade. IIRC, Luongo was traded only a day or two after the SCF.

  39. danny says:

    I’ll qualify that with I know we are not a playoff team in reality. The backend is two moves away, and we are 2 years, 2 players away from being a contender up front…

    But we ARE on track now.

    .. and to Oilman, Having Kaberle and Stajan in that deal makes us a better team today? You must be psyched over Pitkanen and Souray then… because Kaberle? Stajan?

  40. TorOil says:

    Oilman: The news here in T.O. is that Kaberle blew a hissy fit when he got wind of the deal, or it would have been done. I hadn’t heard about the Steen/Stajan wrinkle coming from the Oilers end, tho’. That trade for Kaberle happens, imo, and the whole chaos summer we just experienced likely wouldn’t have (for good or ill, time will tell). Anyway count Kaberle as one of the majority of NHLers who put Edmonton at the bottom of their list of places to play. Not exactly the type of guy you want to replace Pronger, although he’s one hell of a player. At least Souray, by all accounts, really wants to be there.

  41. Devin says:

    danny- Kaberle is one of the best defensemen in the league, at a reasonable cap hit, and still fairly young. I know it’s cool to hate the Leafs, but that guy is all kinds of good.

    That said, I am not so sure that deal was ever offered. Kaberle had an NTC anyway.

  42. Vic Ferrari says:

    I put zero stock in any rumours out of Toronto.

    This Keenan quote from the Florida Sun-Sentinal lays it out pretty clearly though.

    As for Pronger, Keenan said he had conversations with Oilers GM Kevin Lowe on Sunday, during which he told him the Panthers were pulling out of contention and wouldn’t reconsider unless the Oilers’ demands “dramatically changed.” They reportedly wanted at least Bouwmeester, 22, and winger Nathan Horton, 21, as part of any deal.

    “They were looking for young, top-level players,” Keenan said. “We just feel we’ve invested a lot of time and energy and they’re people we see continuing to improve and have a tremendous upside. That’s not to say we wouldn’t like to have Chris Pronger, but you have to make some choices along the way.”

    You can pay a couple of bucks and get the article from the Sentinal’s archives, or read this copy from dallasstarschat.com

  43. Ribs says:

    KLowe’s a fuckin’ RockStar.
    Deal with That.

  44. Vic Ferrari says:

    Also, this quote from Keenan in the same article, which was principally about the acquisition of Ruslan Salei.

    “[Salei's] very consistent, he knows the game well and plays hard minutes,” Keenan said. “In other words, he’s often playing against the best competitors the other team has. … He can play a lot of minutes and in a lot of different situations.”


    Wait a minute! Wait a cotton pickin’ minute! Now everyone on CalgaryPuck knows that there is no such thing as ‘hard minutes’, outside of the imagination of mudcrutch79. But here we have Keenan defining the term as if we newbies.

    Is mudcrutch79 controlling Mike Keenan like some mad puppeteer? I dunno.

  45. Oilman says:

    Vic…I do recall reading that before…i would imagine that they had no interest in doing that deal after giving Luongo away….the timing really sucked. Maybe if we hadn’t made the final Lowe could have snuck in for those two prior to the Luongo trade….but if my aunt had nuts right.

    The part about Keenan mentioning they had invseted a lot of time in them and they had a lot of upside is pretty funny, considering he had no problem trading one of the best (young) goalies in the world.

    BTW….MC79 talks about “tough minutes” not “hard minutes”..2 totally different things I’m sure.

  46. Oilman says:

    Danny – you’re justifying a bad trade with the fact that we got a good pick because of the horendous year caused in large part by the bad trade – is that one of those Jedi mind tricks?

  47. oilerdiehard says:

    As for Pronger, Keenan said he had conversations with Oilers GM Kevin Lowe on Sunday, during which he told him the Panthers were pulling out of contention and wouldn’t reconsider unless the Oilers’ demands “dramatically changed.” They reportedly wanted at least Bouwmeester, 22, and winger Nathan Horton, 21, as part of any deal.

    “They were looking for young, top-level players,” Keenan said. “We just feel we’ve invested a lot of time and energy and they’re people we see continuing to improve and have a tremendous upside. That’s not to say we wouldn’t like to have Chris Pronger, but you have to make some choices along the way.”

    So this proves what?

    That Lowe was asking for too much and blew deals because of it?

    He did not say what the counter offer from the Panthers was. For all we know, maybe it Weiss, their best D man prospect off the farm team and some draft picks. Would that have excited you much more?

    The only thing I see that proving is Lowe was trying get more and struck out. I do agree however he could have waited it out a little longer and hopefully something better came along.

  48. Asiaoil says:

    Fanboy unbridled optmism on HF and the bolgs are full of Johnny Dark Cloud pessimism. What is a cautiuously optmistic fan to do at the start of the season? I’ll tell ya one thing – one group or the other is going to look mighty silly by the New Year – not that anyone will own up to it :)

  49. Pat says:


    terrific post, and great comments from others here too. I love the note about Smyth no longer being “sponge worthy”. One of Lowe’s remarks also brought to mind a Seinfeldian moment. When reading Lowe say, “I’m thinking, ‘Holy mackerel, we’ve got a lot of guys here,’”, I couldn’t help but think of an exchange between Lloyd Braun and Jerry:

    (Jerry inadvertently hands Lloyd Braun money for $100 worth of gum, and Braun returns with several boxes)

    Lloyd Braun: “am I crazy, or is that a LOT of gum?”
    Jerry: “it’s a lot of gum!!”

    Actually, the analogy may be quite apt – Jerry blindly pulling out $100 bucks, not knowing what he’s really doing, Lowe blindly shelling out for Souray, yet (incredulously) not realizing that he’s already got a stockload of D.

  50. Lowetide says:

    Asia: I’m pretty positive about this season. Lots of kids to watch, we’ll be able to see if MP, JFJ progress and Hemsky is a thrill to watch anytime.

    My bet on EDM in 10-13 and I think that’s pretty damn positive. If Calgary has 13 NHL players I’d be giggling like an idiot.

  51. Vic Ferrari says:


    I think you know that I’m usually optimistic about Oiler teams, have been for years. Though last year I wasn’t, I thought they were a bubble team, I thought the forward corps had gotten weaker. And I convinced nobody else. Dennis actually started to sway me (him and LT are both fatal optimists by nature I think, and I’m not kidding)

    You’re an optimist, Asiaoil, and that’s a good thing. In this thread at IOF last year your remarks were positive as ever. And I quote, the self proclaimed “wildly optimistic” Asiaoil: Havent been this pumped since the early 80s for a new season.

    We’re all wrong a bunch, or at least I am. And I’m carrying the lowest expectations in the Oilogosphere for the Oilers this season (80 points). Only Loxy is in the same realm at 82 points, Lowetide, I suspect is mid-80s, RiversQ too. I’m sure that MC79 and Andy are thinking over 90 points. CinO guys are harder to peg, they spit venom but I suspect that all three are thinking the Oilers are a fringe playoff team.

    So basically, relative to non-Oiler fans … the Oilogosphere is very positive.

    I’m not feeling the love with this team. I don’t think that they’re going to have the puck enough to score lots of goals. And I think they’ll take too many penalties. By the end of November we should have a pretty good feel for how things are going. Anything can happen, but there just aren’t enough good NHL players on this team IMO.

    I wish I was on top of the world about this team. Be so fucking excited that I’m a threat to shit myself at any moment. A lot of Oiler fans are like that every damn fall, regardless of the roster. And that’s just fine for them. But I’m not, I just don’t see it. And there is nothing to apologize for.

  52. PunjabiOil says:

    Punjabioil: I stole it from you at HF and did not give credit. I should have and was in a hurry but had time to type a lot of other crap and didn’t man up so I’m doing it now.

    Not at all, no credit neccessary. The Journal is public information -it’s not like I revealed anything.

    I was just messing around.

  53. Vic Ferrari says:


    It says what it says, seems clear enough, but I’ll restate:

    * Lowe was looking for young players according to Keenan here. He’s given specifics of what Lowe was asking for from FLA. Contradicting the theory that Lowe was trying (and failing) to acquire another highly paid star like Luongo, Hossa or others.

    * If Lowe had pulled off a deal for Horton and Bouwmeester the Oilogosphere would have been ecstatic. I don’t know what the thinking was on messageboards, but I remember mc79hockey thinking that Bouwmeester alone would be fair value in return, and I don’t remember anyone disagreeing. Because it was rational.

    How the hell do you go from demanding Jaybo AND Horton to deciding that freaking Smid and freaking Lupul plus a couple of picks is fair value just a few days later?

    It’s crazy. I had never even heard of Smid at the time, but he’s no hell, and Christ we all knew the scoop with the Joffer. Good Lord.

  54. danny says:

    Vic, I think Jaybo would have been a nice return as well, but the popular notion amongst the oilogosphere was FLA were offering Horton and jaybo however Lowe wanted a pick included and that was the breaker… some people were/are cemented in that being the case, i believe some people had proof?

    the article you linked was the first I’ve seen that confirms the deal was not on the table in fact.

  55. Dennis says:

    I don’t think I’m an optimist at all. I think I used to be a little bit but the older I get and the more I read, the more pragmatic I become.

    Last year I truly believed that we’d score a bunch of goals but I absolutely undervalued the importantce of having guys that coujld move the puck from teh backend. Though, to be fair, things would’ve been better if Shaggy had better health. So maybe the lesson was more about depth than anything else.

    I’ll take the Oilers in 10th this year and I’ll say that a bunch of thigns have to break right for them to make a jump. And I mean that internally. Externally, maybe some club in the NW suffers a rash of injuries akin to our ’07 maladies and that might move us up a spot, too.

    I think the netminding is gonna be better but a lot of other things have yet to be determined. Will we see the ‘old’ Pitkanen and can Souray bounce back plus/minus wise while keeping his PP production close to last year? Up front, can Pouliot get something going and can Raffi bring back his counting numbers? I’ll pick Cogs to have a better and more consistent year than Nilsson because he’s faster and has more guts.

    That’s about it for now:)

  56. Asiaoil says:

    Vic – well I must have been feeling particularly sunny that day in the afterglow of the run – but that’s my point. The last 30 games 06/07 is completely coloring this year’s outlook. I do have to disagree with you guys that you have been cutting this squad any slack. IOF has been pretty much merciless in it’s bashing of the team and each and every move. This summer’s line was that the vets that left were all gods and the kids are all junk who can’t hope to fill their skates. Nice to see everyone all smiley again after a win – but it just wasn’t so this summer.

    This year’s team is almost completely unpredictable given the total change in chemistry and total overhaul of the defense. Our goaltending with Roli will be solid and Garon is able to steal a few games on his own that Jussi never could.

    The defense is better with Staios, Souray and the Finn – and if one of the kids (Greene or Gilbert) has a growth spurt then we may be OK. Even then we have Tarnstrom to provide a bit of veteran support. I’d like another stay at home 2nd pair guy but we have to play Greene and Gilbert this year so that we can bring Smid back into the picture next year. Just package Grebeshkov and Schremp already for a draft pick – they are such extra baggage.

    As for the forwards – Nillson has been the answer at 2nd line RW so far but Brodziak is being asked to pull too much of a load trying to replace Pisani. Damn I wish he was healthy. But again – so many kids who must simply play this season (Nillson, Brodziak, MAP). Cogs has been a godsend but LT and I have always been fans – so I’m not surprised.

    Will this team gel – who knows. Will several good vets who had down years rebound and have good years – probably. Will the goaltending carry us – I think so and look what that did for a mediocre VAN team. Will one or two kids surprise – looks good so far but let’s see. Pragmatism is very much in order this season – but people need to look up the definition – that sort of cautious level-headedness was no where in sight this summer which was full of bashing and negativism.

    What’s my call? I think the team will start fast, have a brutal mid-season slump, then finish like gangbusters and just fall short in the playoff drive. We will be far better defensively than expected, decent offensively and will win a bunch of games through solid goaltending – 9th spot.

  57. Doogie says:

    Asiaoil said…

    Fanboy unbridled optmism on HF and the bolgs are full of Johnny Dark Cloud pessimism. What is a cautiuously optmistic fan to do at the start of the season? I’ll tell ya one thing – one group or the other is going to look mighty silly by the New Year – not that anyone will own up to it :)

    Indeed. No matter what anyone else here says, there has been far more pessimism than optimism on the blogs over the course of the summer. While that has abated somewhat with the early returns from TC and Game 1, the fact of the matter is, there’s a lot of unbelievers around these parts right now, lamenting the trading of a “potential lottery pick.” I personally think this team is a bubble team, and I think their season hinges on the kids. If they absolutely excel, they’re in. If they struggle for more than a few games, they’re likely out. But either way, it’ll be competitive to the end.

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