Oilers at Dallas, G31/07-08

This is Tom Reid. He played a little for the Dallas Blackhawks in the late 1960s when they were a farm club of the Chicago Blackhawks.

Reid was pretty famous early in his career for being the worst skater in the league, something he improved enough to have an NHL career. By 1970 he’d lost the crown to Pierre Bouchard, who was snail-slow.

He eventually landed with the North Stars and played a quiet, consistent style that came in handy during some impressive playoff drives for Minnesota 1971-73.

Picking up his story from Legends of Hockey: Reid stood as a North Star mainstay until 1977. It was at that time that a small red rash appeared on his arm. Massive itching sensations soon followed as his skin began to deteriorate. His affliction soon took on the name “Gunk.” As the league’s doctors, trainers, and equipment producers began to investigate, they discovered that about 100 players across the NHL were suffering from various degrees of the affliction. But no case was as severe as Reid’s. His skin got so bad that he could only sleep while sitting upright in a wooden chair. Before the season was over, his suffering grew so severe that he was forced to retire. In the end, the doctors concluded that he was allergic to his equipment and to the die found in his uniform. Since his forced departure from hockey, Reid has worked as a color analyst for North Stars home games and later for Minnesota Gophers college hockey.

Reid has been interviewed on the subject a few times, and the quotes are so awful I refuse to pass them along. I will however post one: “I had some sort of eczema. It was like I had no skin from my neck to my waist.” After that, the story gets worse.

His story, and a company he is/was involved with (Esporta) paved the way for future hockey players to avoid such difficulties although it still shows up from time to time.

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63 Responses to "Oilers at Dallas, G31/07-08"

  1. Paulus says:

    Stoll/Torres draw back in, Thor remains, and Stortini watches. Everything as it should be then?

    For some reason, I don’t like Stortini sitting out. I don’t know, you just can’t count out guys that try that hard, y’know. He always seems like he’s gonna do something important (score a goal, make a big hit) but never does. Like watching water, waiting, waiting, waiting for 100 degrees.

  2. DBO says:

    So what will the other lines be then? With the Stoll line, are they the third or fourth line? Is the Reasoner, Pisani and Brodziak line the shutdown line, or is Cogs still with them?

  3. oilerdiehard says:

    I like Stortini and that is right he certainly does try hard.

    Unfortunately, that often entails trying very hard in his own zone, getting hemmed in for long, nail biting periods of time. Zack seems to have a hell of a time clearing a puck out of the D zone when he gets it on his stick. IMO he is pretty far away from being ready for the kind of role he has been playing recently.

    As far as the try hard goes, we have added Thor to the line up and he brings plenty of try. It will be interesting to see what the line of Torres-Stoll-Thoresen comes up with tonight.

  4. pennersmom says:

    That’s a disgusting story. You’d think he’d try washing his equipment once in a while.

    Torres said all the right things in the journal today…moreso than Stoll who seemed like he didn’t want to talk about it. It’ll be very interesting to see how they play tonight.

  5. goldenchild says:

    Stoll and Torres said all the right things in the papers about the benching hopefully they come out and play well tonight.

    Also i read something where Tarnstrom draws in and Grebechkov is out, does that say more about Grebeshkov or Rourke?

  6. Dennis says:

    Without doing a search, I’m pretty sure this happened to one of the Vopat’s too, didn’t it?

    Paulus, things are starting to round out for sure and once 18 gets back, we’ll finally see what we have up front. I still highly doubt that it’s good enough to make the playoffs but it should be good enough to pehaps have the Ducks picking 9th or 10th come June.

    MacT’s still fucking around somewhat when it comes to the lines, though. Personally, I’d just give up the ghost and put 34 with 14-16 and hope that we’d finally have two lines we could trust. But MacT seems to like 34 playing with 12-89 and I dunno, maybe he’s right. On the one hand, Thor’s a guy that I think can play top nine min but on the other hand, the 14=16 duo are in such a funk that I’d be giving them the extra strenght medicine on their starboard side, so to speak.

    But I think we’re starting to see what the plan will be once Moreau comes back. I think he’ll take over the current Pisani babysitter role and we’ll finally see the 14-16-34 line back together again.

    As Vic has said, though, there are only so many corks you can hold under water at the same time. Currently, here’s what MacT has to consider in putting together lines:

    - Trying to wring some offense out of 27 to the point that the offersheet doesn’t go beyond laughability

    - Finding some way to jumpstart Stoll. Note: Raffi isn’t tearing it up offensively but at least he can look after his own end

    - Trying to protect all the kids

    - Finally, trying to clone Pisani.

  7. Dennis says:

    Note: Oilers put Roy on waivers today.

    So, I guess that means that the Oilers really do like Rourke and will keep him around until both Tarnstrom and Souray are back.

  8. dubya says:

    I like Roy but I hope he gets claimed. He deserves a shot in a town where he isn’t cursed. Plus it would free up a contract so we’d be able to get Lecavalier AND St. Louis for Stoll and Roloson. Add a 4th round pick if necessary.

    Problems solved! Salary cap, schmalary cap.

  9. jon says:

    Putting Roy on waivers was the next logical step with Souray and Tarnstrom coming back this week I guess. Either he gets picked up or they assign him back to Springfield.

    Don’t like seeing Grebeshkov sitting over Rourke, but with Tarnstrom back before Souray we need a physical presence from the backend. Probably somewhat important to note that since MacT threw Grebeshkov to the wolves when the team didn’t have a chance of winning, he’s now handling a lesser assignment more in line with his experience reasonably well.

    Can’t say the Stortini situation is entirely analogous, however sitting him is the right thing to do. Hell, they could send him down now. He’s gotten a taste of what it takes to play 10+ minutes in the NHL, and by all accounts he’s taking steps to improve his skating. Let him work on it over the summer and see what he can do next year. Stoll and Torres took more than one summer to get their skating where it is now, hopefully the same can be a reality for Stortini.

  10. uni says:

    My skin is itching just from reading that story. Well that and the eczema.

    Wonder if Thor can jump start anything on a Stoll-Torres line. That concussion has to be the factor here. Stoll just needs to block two shots, one off of each foot, on the same shift, crawl off to the dressing room, then go on a tear again like he did last season =).

  11. Lowetide says:

    There was a time when playing against Dallas would depress me all day. It wasn’t a matter of losing, but by how much.

    Lately though, the Oilers seem to have their number. They’ll need:

    1. Horcoff to be Horcoff
    2. Hemsky to be Middleton
    3. Roloson to be spectacular
    4. Solid D from top 2 pairings
    5. Stay out of penalty box.

  12. PDO says:


    I think it’s time to break up the 14 and 16 combo, for a few reasons here. Firstly… neither is much of a passer, and by my eye, that’s been one of the biggest reasons that they have had so many problems at 5v5 outside of that stretch with Pisani last year where they got hot. Secondly, it’s looking like one of them is dealt… so why not see who can find chemistry on the team with them?

    14-10-83 should be the top line… and after that it’s ugly. I’d try a few combos out, starting with 27-16-34, 28-19-51, 12-13-89. Obviously that last line has to be sheltered… but we actually have a semblance of 3 lines there, and once 18 comes back and knocks 12 into the AHL, we have 4 lines, albeit not very good ones :].

    I wouldn’t mind giving 28 a shot with 16 and 34 as well, and I’m not totally opposed to a 27-19-34 line. If 27 can’t find chemistry with those two, he really is a lost cause ;)

  13. Lord Bob says:

    Historical fun fact: the “gunk” also ended the career of the great former Nashville Predators defenseman Jan Vopat.

  14. Lowetide says:

    Guy Lapointe had it too btw (“gunk”). It isn’t from not washing equipment etc, it seems to be from skin mixing with sweat and the materials in uniform and equipment to create some kind of irritant.

    Tarnstrom isn’t in the lineup? Anyone hearing this?

  15. PDO says:

    Ah… Refs.

    The only people on the ice I hate more than goaltenders.

  16. Andy Grabia says:

    Jesus. What the hell is going on with this game?

  17. PDO says:

    Apparently it’s 1985.

  18. PDO says:

    Er… how on earth was Penner’s goal unassisted? I know it pinballed in, but Horcoff passed it to Penner, neither lost possession at any point in time…

  19. Lowetide says:

    Yeah the Penner goal needs an assist for Horcoff, no doubt. One thing I do like about hockey is that the official scorer can be appealed and they’ll get it right.

    Before baseball died, it would always drive me nuts that the hometown official scorer would give base hits to the home team that were clearly errors.

  20. Andy Grabia says:

    Before baseball died

    It’s never been better, my friend.

    Fun fact that I learned yesterday: Tom Brady was drafted by the Expos in 1995. As a catcher out of high school. Be a neat “what if?” jersey to own.

  21. Dennis says:

    AG, Expos also drafted Rickey Williams and at once time had Matt Dunigan in their system. Not to mention that they also drafted Mark McGuire.

    What a bomb of a period. Roli didn’t do a damn thing to help himself and there were brutal jobs of coverage on two of the goals. Both came to the left of Roli and one was the fault of 37 and the other belonged to Ladislav Ulanov.

    Seriously, that guy gets very easily lost in his own zone.

  22. Andy Grabia says:

    This game is still wiiiide open. It could end up 7-6, for either team.

    Knew about Dunigan and Roid Boy. Didn’t know about Williams. My guess is that he would have loved living in Montreal.

  23. PDO says:

    Why are Pisani and Reasoner on the first PP unit with Hemsky?

  24. Mustafa Hirji says:

    Have they given Horc his assist yet? He’s in the midst of a 10 game point streak and I don’t want it to be wrongly shortened to 6 games.

  25. Andreas says:

    Good backcheck by Thor to get the turnover, nice pass by Torres and a perfect top shelf shot by Gilbert.
    Lets hope the boys can keep i tied more then 40 seconds now.

  26. Lowetide says:

    Gilbert is a winner. A freaking winner. At some point we’re going to have to begin talking about Gilbert Gilbert being Salo’s number one contribution to the Oilers.

  27. Andy Grabia says:

    That’s three goals on empty nets for the Stars. Ugly, ugly coverage. Anyone ever heard of taking the body? Jesus. The only thing that makes me feel better is watching how bad Dallas is playing in their end. This is pond hockey.

  28. jon says:

    Hemsky has been absolutely terrible the past half-dozen games. He’s still getting points, but there are some sloppy, sloppy plays on his part.

  29. Lowetide says:

    I believe all of the forwards who have played over 200 NHL games have been caught making those wonky cross ice passes tonight except for the guy who was once famous for them: 10.

  30. Dennis says:

    Lain, this one falls on the D as far as I’m concerned.

    There’s some games where we don’t get netminding and there’s others where you have a bunch of turnovers. Then there’s games like tonight where defensemen are just nowhere to be found.

    That last goal, for instance, all started because Smid threw one up the middle without anyone even being close to him. He’s just being a total fucking monkey tonight.

    EVEN for Smid, this is a bad game.

  31. Lowetide says:

    Dennis: Oh yeah, agree completely. I’d even narrow it down to Smid-Staios, Grebeshkov-Rourke. To my eye, Pitkanen and Gilbert have been at least average.

  32. Andy Grabia says:

    There’s that point for Horcoff. Penner is like Laraque with hands tonight.

  33. jon says:

    At least Horc and Penner have been strong as of late. Funny goal, but well-deserved.

  34. jon says:

    Hemsky really needs to be taken off for a few shifts. Killing momentum in the offensive zone and not picking up his man in the defensive zone. Poor effort overall.

  35. Andy Grabia says:

    I’d even narrow it down to Smid-Staios, Grebeshkov-Rourke.

    It’s been those four on all four goals, hasn’t it? Grebeshkov and Rourke for the first two, and Staios and Smid for the last two?

  36. Lowetide says:

    Sounds right Andy. And I agree on Hemsky, feet are not moving when he was the puck along the wall.

    Still, he’s a guy who can make a difference on one play, and the Oilers don’t have many of those.

  37. Andy Grabia says:

    Overtime versus the Stars does not leave me feeling good in the tummy. One point no matter what, though, which is nice. Neither team really deserved it tonight.

  38. Lowetide says:

    Andy: I always like the odds when OT starts and the good side has had the busier goalie. He’s usually sharper, and certainly Garon has been busier.

    Don’t like our chances in the SO though.

    OH WAIT: Stoll takes a penalty. All bets are off.

  39. Andy Grabia says:

    That’s a penalty?

    It’s going to be Zubov. I just know it.

  40. Andy Grabia says:

    Fucking Zubov. He can’t retire fast enough.

  41. jon says:

    That’s a pretty disappointing loss coming from an iffy penalty call. Lots of goats on D, F, and G tonight.

    Some bright spots though. Pitkanen still looks good, Horc great. Nilsson and Gagner are developing chemistry and the latter seems to be adapting to the NHL, especially along the boards and in finding open space.

  42. Lowetide says:

    Well, I’d say Stoll and Torres didn’t do enough to say the night off helped their attitude. I agree with Dennis on the D stinking out the joint, but the Oilers have some guys not doing much up front too.

    And Nilsson is a guy who can do some things, but did he do much after the assist on Gagner’s goal? I don’t recall him doing much.

  43. Andreas says:

    I think it’s quite hard to blame it all on the defenseman, when guys like Zubov have all the time in the world on the blueline without pressure and can pinpoint passes all around the offensive zone it’s very difficult to be a defender. It leaves alot of guessing for defenseman weather it’s coming a shot or a pass so in my opinion collapsing forwards are as much blame on some of tonights goals.

    Well Oilers battled hard in the 3rd and got a point. Then Stars got a nice christmas gift from the refs in OT.

  44. PunjabiOil says:

    MacT with a puzzling move by putting Smid on the PK on the GWG. I don’t think Souray could be any worse than Bobby Smid (-2 tonight).

    That was a weak call on Stoll, mind you.

    Need a win tommorow.

    Cogliano benched today – seems like the puck has been hemmed into the Oilers zone every time he’s on the ice recently. -4 in the last 4 games now.

    Just an overall disappointing loss, but no reason they can’t beat St. Louis tommorow. Hopefully Tarnstrom is back, as is Souray.

    The talk of Grebeshkov sitting in the PB is nonsense – it should be Rourke and Smid. Of course MacT is making questionable moves after another this season, so I don’t know what’s going on there.

  45. heed says:

    penner had a nice night out. stoll and torres look eerily similar to the two guys that got benched. i have a feeling one of them will be shipped if they don’t right the ship before the end of this road trip. garon looked good in relief and really should get the chance to start tomorrow night. a point’s a point but damn i was hoping for two.

  46. rickibear says:

    pjoil: Read mirtles article on players who improve their pk.

  47. PunjabiOil says:

    Forgot to mention that Staios was the goat on that one – had the puck, and failed to get it out of the zone, and cost us the extra point.

  48. Dennis says:

    I dunno, PJO. If the Oilers D was a meritocracy, then 5 and 37 would have to be the guys yanked. 37 was having a nice run before tonight but he was totally lost in coverage all evening this evening. Meanwhile, it’s nice that 5 has a meanstreak because that stuff’s impossible to teach but there are other things a D has to be able to do besides mix it up after the whistle.

    He was just a zoo tonight.

    27-10-83 – Some sloppy and stubborn stuff from 83 but this line certianly did their job. 27 was just imposing his will on a small Stars D tonight. Maybe that’s why he looked so good. Then again, the guy’s now +4, right? That counts for something on this ship.

    14-16-28 – It’s too bad that 28 isn’t bigger because he’d be a piece of work if that was the case. Great job of him stripping Modano before the 77 goal. I didn’t see enough from the guys that got benched and how long is it that we can blame it on the fact they don’t have 34 on the RW.

    12-89-34 – I’ll be damned if 89′s not showing a bit more grit. Him and 12 actually won some board battles tonight so I was proud of them on that account. And on D zone coverage, 89 was in the right place a couple of times. I like 34 there too as he does the right things

    13-19-51 – This line’s falling down right now and needs something. 13′s no longer visible, 19′s struggling and there are times when 51′s the best guy.

    D: 24 is sinking and 5 can’t help. I notice the vet letting the young guy do more and more of the puck distributing but then once things get tight in their our own end, 5 oft times looks like he never played D before in his life. And that’s important going forward because Smid will never be much of an offensive guy. Man, can you imagine being dumb enough to believe that this guy plus Lupul was enough to build a Pronger package around> Failing that, can you imagine being dumb enough to support such a move;)?

    I discussed 37 above and 52 was steady again tonight. I think 25 and 77 are getting more comfortable with each other. That being said, they’re not there yet and 77 has to stop doing that Brewer move where he skates himself and the team into trouble when he can’t see daylight at first glance

    G: Roli’s playing his way off the team. Nothing else can be said. Pathetic rebound control tonight. Meanwhile, looks like Garon’s about to get his second or third chance to really really carry the ball. He was magic tonight in the relief role.

  49. PunjabiOil says:

    What about the PP lines? Did anyone else find it odd they didn’t put their best on the first line? The first unit was 83-19-34 up front, and the 2nd unit was 10-27-89.

  50. Dennis says:

    Probably the first time I ever saw a coach use three PP units, ie 12-13-89 came out to close. I have no idea what 19-34 were doing out there to start.

  51. PunjabiOil says:

    I dunno, PJO. If the Oilers D was a meritocracy, then 5 and 37 would have to be the guys yanked. 37 was having a nice run before tonight but he was totally lost in coverage all evening this evening.

    Going to have to disagree with you Dennis. I don’t think Grebeshkov was bad tonight. He’s been fine, as long as you don’t give him too many minutes…interesting note, he was -6 in his 6 games, and has been +2 ever since. It was 10 games ago in which he had a minus rating.

    Staios, tonight logged up 25 minutes. He’s playing out of his comfort zone, and that can probably explain his sub-par season.

    The PP still isn’t clicking. Aside from Horcoff, there isn’t really a ”shooter” to finish off those plays.

  52. Devin says:

    Yeah, just what the heck is with 12-13-89 finishing the PPs (and being forced to play the dreaded “shift after”) tonight?

    I don’t get MacT sometimes. He’s a guy that has been making sense for years but this year he’s just throwing paint at the wall hoping for a masterpiece. He’s always been hopelessly incompetent when it comes to PP strategy — I can’t see how anyone could dispute this nor that there could be an easier, higher-yielding “fix” to take aim at. We need a PP-only coach. Or just a guy who watches Dallas and MTL tape endlessly and hammers these concepts into the players.

    You know, things that actually work, empirical evidence and all that.

  53. Lowetide says:

    Devin: He doesn’t have enough NHL players.

  54. RiversQ says:

    I’m with Dennis on Smid. I love that he’ll mix it up after the whistle (and it’s only cost them with one penalty IIRC) but he is just crap in his own end when he needs to make a decision. “Should I stay or should I go?” Has anyone ever been so fucking stumped by that one?

    Nice game from Penner tonight. As long as his linemates get the puck and get it deep, he can be a serious positive force. My only complaint about him is still turning it over at the blueline – he does it at least twice every game.

    Pitkanen looked good, but the Oiler D were shit with the first pass tonight. If anyone has a chance to re-watch this one, watch how many times the dmen coast and wait, and wait before rifling some idiotic pass up the middle. They didn’t move the puck tonight and that allowed Dallas to dominate the puck possession.

    Pisani is a fabulous hockey player. Period.

  55. Devin says:

    LT- no, I don’t buy it. You have 10, 83, 27, 13, 12, 89 up front for PP minutes, and 34, 16, 14, 19, 51, 28 for the after-PP minutes. That’s enough guys to figure out a couple PP units and a first-shift-after PP line. I know 51 for eg. is a rookie but he’s not going to hurt you. Having 12-89-13 on the ice against Morrow and Ribeiro is. There’s enough talent here to be better than 30th on the PP, too.

    As for Smid, I think it’s funny how he’s like the anti-Greene. Greene is decisive at every turn, usually boldly forging ahead with some stupid play. When Smid hesitates the result is similar. Here’s hoping one guy can learn to lower the stupid:smart ratio and the other can use his good skating and puckhandling 95% of the time instead of 50%.

  56. Doogie says:

    Tom Brady was drafted by the Expos in 1995. As a catcher out of high school. Be a neat “what if?” jersey to own.

    To go with my purple Tom Glavine Kings jersey? ;)

    Greene is decisive at every turn, usually boldly forging ahead with some stupid play.

    I don’t know why that cracked me up as much as it did.

    Can’t say as I’m surprised Roli was pulled. He’s been mostly awful this year, and listening on CHED, you just knew the dam had broken on the second goal, and it was only a matter of time before #3 brought the hook. What are the odds he gets dealt to Tampa or Pittsburgh by February?

  57. Golden says:

    Tom Reid has a nice little bar just down the street from the Excel Energy Centre in St. Paul. I would recommend it if you are ever there to see the Wild play. Some of the players and training staff show up there after the games, as well as the Sportnet broadcast crew if you want to say hi to Principe and the gang.

  58. dwillms says:

    Didn’t see the game last night, but Staples seemed to have quite a different take on Staios than anything I’ve read:

    “I know plenty of people, including me, have been crabby about the length of the contracts that Kevin Lowe gave out to Steve Staios and Ethan Moreau, but when Staios is on his game, as he was last night, the hard-nosed veteran stuff he brings is worth every penny.”

  59. heed says:

    13-19-51 – This line’s falling down right now and needs something. 13′s no longer visible, 19′s struggling and there are times when 51′s the best guy.

    sanderson is the missing ingredient. he reminds me a lot of dvorak, skates like the wind only to end up no where. somehow reasoner and brodziak have the innate ability to turn no where to somewhere. reasoner does not have the ability to baby sit to young’uns at once.

  60. Dennis says:

    That’s high praise for Sanderson and it really isn’t deserved.

    Dvorak could play tough min and keep his head near or above water and though 8′s mostly playing with 19-51, he’s not Dvorak, either.

    I think 8′s a guy that could probably do a decent little job filling out the 10-83 tandem but one of the many storylines for this year is making sure that 27 gets to play with the best so that’s not an option for Sanderson.

  61. Slipper says:

    I think Staios is being affected by the forwards in front of him, and the opposition he faces. He’s the baby sitter this, ecspecially for the kid lines.

    Gilbert and Pitkanen are looking real good, but I think if you directly replaced the ice-time Staios logs with either of those two things would look real bad. A sophomore to his left, and three kids ahead of him. When he’s lucky enough to defend behind more experienced forwards (ie. Stoll) it’s more than likely that the other team’s top scoring line will be out against him, and up until late there wasn’t alot of scoring coming from the Stoll’s unit.

    Staios is the number one defender on this team, atleast that’s what I glean ffrom his minutes.

  62. dwillms says:

    Hmm, take a look at the 5-on-5 log for Staios at Behind The Net.

    I’d agree that he faces tough opposition, but his most common teammates every game aren’t 12-13-89, but usually 14-16, and sometimes 10-83.

    By the looks of it, it’s usually 37-52 on the ice with the kids, but facing soft competition. 25-77 get the premium teammates, but tough competition, and are witout a doubt the top pairing.

  63. Slipper says:

    Yeah, as a percent of Staios minutes it doesn’t look like that much. But he’s facing tough opposition with the least offensively productive lines on the ice (including kids like Brodziak, Smid, Stortini, and Nillson- man alive there’s alot of them on this team) most of the time. I think when he’s on the ice with a Horcoff or Hemsky, that’s when MacT is going power versus power. Fill that time card out with around an average of 40 percent of Ganger’s icetime and that’s a pretty ugly wat to earn an NHL paychecque.

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