Look at these two mugs. Remember that old song “Beauty is only Skin Deep” (I think) by the Temptations? This photo was taken right after the win over the Ducks and will serve as a high water mark for this franchise through the end of the decade.
The 2006 trade deadline will probably serve as Kevin Lowe’s high water mark and one imagines he wanted to do something today that energized the fanbase.
Alas, it was not to be. Word from the GM this afternoon that Stoll was in play (if you read between the lines that’s what he said) but the return wasn’t good enough. He also told us that Dwayne Roloson didn’t get much love and Lowe looked like he had a stress free day.
I think there are some things we can assume based on how today went and who is still here.
- Marty Reasoner may be back in the fall. Think about it: the Oilers have a capable replacement in the minors (Pouliot) and Marty may have been able to help out a few teams while clearing the way for another young player. MacT’s comments on him recently combined with the fact he remains an Oiler have convinced me Marty’s back in 08-09.
- The French Connection is going to need to run faster than Popeye Doyle and Cloudy Russo in that scene where one is Santa Claus and the other is a hotdog vendor (I forget which is which). Marc Pouliot and JF Jacques got no room cleared for them today and the fact that Ethan rifles is out for the season didn’t inspire a call to Springfield. Whatever shithouse they’re in I don’t want to know.
- Dwayne Roloson is here until this time next season. With Ottawa staring another summer in the face due to possibly the most hilarious goalie tandem since Winnipeg employed Pokey Reddick and Alain Chevrier. Roloson is caught now between a rock and a hard place and one hopes he can show enough between now and the end of the season to be regarded as more than a suck on the cap heading into the fall.
- Steve Staios is highly valued by the Oilers. A few NHL defensemen were going at high prices this deadline as is usually the case. Staios is superior to a few guys who went today and the Oilers could have picked up some help for the draft this summer by dumping him today. It’s a smart move by Lowe, but I imagine he was tempted.
- Geoff Sanderson is done. When you’re Geoff Sanderson and you don’t get dealt today the NHL is telling you that it’s over. Sad day for a guy who had a nice career.
- Kevin Lowe believes this season was more about injuries than inability. He said as much today by not moving some pieces that frankly he should move out of town if he believes this team as currently built can’t make it happen. Among the obvious players in this category are Denis Grebeshkov and Matt Greene.
- Jarret Stoll is in the long range plans. If he wasn’t, they would have dealt him today. Stoll isn’t going to take a cut from $2.2M in the fall and his putrid output at EVs (.70/60) trails offensive monsters like Denis Grebeshkov, Zack Stortini and Marty Reasoner. I know he’s faced quality competition but he’s failing at it badly. If they believe he’s going to improve next season then it’s worth the bet but 2.2M players who score 2-6-8 in 12 hours of equal strength time are rare for a reason. If they got an offer of any consequence today one could argue they should have taken it.
- The Oilers will be active at the draft. Edmonton has so many forwards now that are either on the roster, injured, playing in the AHL or ECHL or in Europe but knocking (hello Bumagin!) that they’ll have to clear the decks a little before the fall. Hell, just listing the left wingers is a chore: Penner, Torres, Moreau, Cogliano, Glencross, Jacques, Reddox, Trukhno with only the final 2 sure AHLers (and Cogliano a possible C but that backs up the depth chart there to 8 as well).
- They may have been inactive because of the change of ownership. It isn’t out of the realm of possibility that Katz has had some kind of impact on the long term decision making process already. A big trade like Richards would have required Katz’ input, right? Now that assumes the Oilers were players and that Richard would waive his NTC to come here but you get the point.
- They may have been inactive because a coaching change is coming. Bryn Griffiths has been floating this idea lately and I’ve suggested Lowe might get bumped upstairs in the past. Possibly the two moves would be connected? Either way a new coach coming in would definitely want to have input on the roster moving forward so perhaps Schremp or Pouliot not being dealt today is with that in mind.
Either way, credit to Kevin Lowe for the one deadline deal he did make this year. Curtis Glencross is working out just fine.