Predators at Oilers, G34/08-09

This is Dolly Parton. Her story is probably the most inspiring in country music history.

Born into real poverty, she had looks, talent and brains (first in her family to graduate high school) and more than that an incredible desire to succeed.

When she arrived in Nashville, women were show-biz ornaments and add-ons and as such she began a professional involvement with Porter Waggoner. His conduct (and her strength during their professional breakup) is the stuff of legends. One career going up, the other sliding down. A Star is Born, country-style.

Do you know about country music lyrics? They’re either so bad they’re funny or so good they speak directly to you and have real emotional power. Because of people like Dolly Parton (and Kris Kristofferson and Rodney Crowell) country music is a thousand times better than it was 40 years ago. I haven’t met many people in my life who could have combined talent and clarity at such a young age, put pen to paper and composed “I Will Always Love You.” She wrote it at age 27, and according to Parton she wrote it for Waggoner. The Whitney Houston version is among the top-selling recordings of all-time. Thanks, Porter.

I’ve been thinking about the Oilers and “clarity” lately. They look a little shy in this area, they’re definitely on the Porter Waggoner side of the universe. We’ve talked many times since the lockout Stanley run about “balance” and huge holes in the roster. We’ve compared the current Oilers to the old-timey Expos who insisted on playing Hubie Brooks at SS whilst wasting the CF at-bats.

There is some evidence now that Craig MacTavish is locked and loaded for 08-09. He’s stopped using Jason Strudwick as a defenseman, the goalie situation is calm and decided, the PP seems to have some hop and the PK some direction. The Oilers need to go on a roll pdq, in fact rfn. Among the very best indicators is that coach MacTavish has sussed out the roster and knows who he can count on.

Good news for some, bad for others. If they can beat Nashville tonight the Oilers will be in the middle of a very nice run with winnable games straight ahead. If they can’t win tonight, they’re back to porridge, back to zero clarity, back to bad lyrics, back to the Carroll County Accident.

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207 Responses to "Predators at Oilers, G34/08-09"

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  1. Muller says:

    I know it’s late December, but to me this game is a must win. We need to get a winning streak going of four five games.

  2. Traktor says:

    The playoff race just got harder as it looks like Dallas has found its groove now that Avery is gone.

    Dave Tippit is easily one of the best coaches in the NHL.

  3. Dennis says:

    Not to belabour a point, though the longtimers here know I don’t have a problem doing that;) but there’s still only so much I can emotionally invest in the ’09 fortunes as long as the PK remains the same.

    I’ve advocated some change – I suggested 13, 26 and 78 get bigger roles – and though those first two guys have gotten a bump, I don’t think things have markedly improved. Maybe I’m wrong about that but that’s the way it seems to me. It just looks like the Oilers don’t have the horses to kill penalties or perhaps they don’t have the horses to win faceoffs and/or they’re no longer interested in having the horses block shots or pressure down-ice. Ty had a post awhile back over at his place comparing the editions since ’04 and that club seemingly gave up a PK goal-a-game, I think they had a streak in the 20′s, and that’s the same way I feel about this crew.

    So, just how much can you expect when you’re basically down 1-0 before you even drop the puck?

    The PP Should be able to run hot enough to cover off some of those losses, however, and even though we’re not too bad at EV, it’s tough sledding getting nothing from 26 or 89.

    We need to:

    - change the way we kill penalties or change personnel

    - find some way to unlock 26 while also keeping 27 productive; understanding that whomever doesn’t play with 83 has to learn to click with someone else.

    - have a PP running at close to 25%; that’s just an off-the-cuff guess but I’m thinking that’s what we’d need.

    I’m not sure that 10-26 could be the genesis for anything but maybe that’s the tough min awnser while we try 27-89-83 to take on the second toughest min. At EV this entire year’s been about one of 27-26 not being able to play with 83 and 89 not being able to make anything happen. And truthfully we’d be able to be more patient with kids and new guys if the PK wasn’t always dragging us down.

  4. Traktor says:

    Here’s an idea, instead of bringing in someone to kill Moreau’s penalties why doesn’t Moreau just stop taking penalties.

    I’ve watched enough hockey in my life to know when you take bad penalties (hooking, holding, slashing) they usually end up in the back of the net regardless who’s out there killing them.

    This team is undisciplined and that falls on the coach.

  5. HBomb says:

    Funny you mention country music as “That’s My Story” by Colin Raye plays on my iTunes.

    Yes, I disappeared on Boxing Day. That “virus” I was bitching about killed my Dell (which was five years old anyways). So, $1600 later “all in”, I’m now working off a brand new HP laptop, and it’s a similar feeling to when I upgraded from a 88 Plymouth Reliant to a brand new Mazda 3 Sport back in 2005.

    Anyways….last time the Oilers beat Nashville, it was Mike Morrison days and Dwayne Roloson was 72 hours away from becoming an Edmonton Oiler. Time for this nonsense to end and the Oilers to beat these guys. Jordin Tootoo getting tuned-up would be a bonus.

    Player to watch tonight on the opposition: Shea Weber. All the hype is around Dion Phaneuf, but I personally think that Weber is further ahead at this point in terms of being an all-around player. He and Hamhuis are both going to get looks for the Olympic Team, and Ryan Suter is probably a lock for Team USA. That`s a pretty nice (and young) top three on the back-end.

  6. HBomb says:

    Oh yeah, and this gem to share with y`all….

    The Greenskeeper:

    2 shots Absolut Citron vodka
    1 shot Triple Sec
    Splash of Pineapple
    Splash of `Bar Lime`

    Shake over ice, serve in martini glass. Repeat as necessary.

  7. Asiaoil says:

    Dennis – I think most of the PK issues stem from the loss of Stoll and Marty. While I supported Stoll’s departure for cap reasons – I expected a cheaper replacement to be brought in – and I saw no reason to pitch Marty on the scrap heap at his price point. Obviously very happy with Lubo – but Lowe left the job half done by not adequately replacing Stoll’s faceoff skills.

    But Lowe has made a habit of undoing a good trade and tossing away useful players for no reason lately. Hejda was and still is a head scratcher, giving Glencross to Calgary was misguided even if he got a couple hundred thousand too much based on past performance, and I would suggest that Torres might look good on LW right now with Cole at RW and a passer like MAP to form a physical tough minute line. Not like Brule will be doing us much good for another year or two if ever.

  8. Doogie2K says:

    Well, the PK did do a bit more shot-blocking last game than they have for most of the season, so I’m thinking baby steps. Still, it’s a hell of a hole to dig yourself out of.

  9. Alice says:

    Misguided? Once the skids had been greased under LW Torres why in hell would you not sign Glencross? How could that contract not be tradable if needed, at worst case a known-quantity journeyman. Best case of course he’d be a late bloomer and you could enjoy his upside, say like Detroit might. Or like Calgary is.

    The young prodigy award in songwriting has to go to John Fogerty, he’s writing stuff like Fortunate Son along with a slew of hits, and he was what, 22 or something? Talk about a career stepping into an elevator shaft though. Shame.

  10. Lowetide says:

    Love John Fogerty. Among his exploits are the greatest guitar riff by any American not named Chuck Berry (the first few seconds of “Up Around the Bend”), the perfect struggling artist song (“Lodi”) and a baseball song that works (“Centerfield”).

    But he was the worst business man ever.

  11. Schitzo says:

    Doogie and Alice: I absolutely agree. Lowe’s job didn’t seem too complicated in the off-season.

    Reasoner or Stoll: Pick one

    Torres or Glencross: Pick one

    Greene or Smid: Pick one

    How we end up moving five of those 6 is unexplainable.

  12. PDO says:

    Well, the ponies stunk and the air was still
    In that dusty circle behind the ferris wheel
    This old guy smelling of smoke and rum
    Swung me up and sat me down on one

    Well I’d never rode a horse but I’d seen it done
    Cowboy movies made it look like fun
    This old man whispered a few soft words
    It was the best advice I’ve ever heard

    He said “Sit tall in the saddle, Hold your head up high
    Keep your eyes fixed where the trail meets the sky
    And live like you ain’t afraid to die
    And don’t be scared, just enjoy your ride”

    I went up a kid with shaking hands
    And I came down a full grown man
    It was like he’d cast some Voodoo spell
    Things were different for me now, I could tell

    Hopefully Gagner can take some advice from Mr. Ledoux….

  13. Coach pb9617 says:

    I think they have to hang on until Pisani gets back. Run Pisani Pouliot and Cole out there as your second tough line and let the kids that can’t win faceoffs get the easy minutes.

    Just gotta hang on.

  14. Oilmaniac says:

    Schitzo:

    Great way to summerize the ‘expected’ off season decisions…

    except there were so many forwards that someone else would have to leave for those mentioned to stay..

  15. Traktor says:

    You gotta love it – Craig MacTavish gets a free pass the last 2 years because “you cant make chicken salad out of chicken shit” and then Kevin Lowe is the asshole for not bring back the same roster.

    For a bunch of supposed bright minds there sure is huge disconnect around here.

    Reasoner is another player who needs protection (physically) and when you ice a team with Hemsky, Gagner, Nilsson, Cogliano and Horcoff in the top 6 you can in no way afford another non-physical player in the bottom 6.

    Reasoner might be able to win a draw but he just throws our balance even more out of whack.

    If we had the Getzlaf’s and Iggy’s in the top 6 we could afford Reasoner in the bottom 6 but that isn’t the case.

    We Cannot Afford More Soft Players!

    If Lowe dumped Torres for a 7th round pick it would be a steal. It was a salary dump. He’s easily one of the most inconstant players in the NHL with nightlife addictions. The fact that some people think that was a bad move blows my mind. Kinda like when people cried when Lowe moved a 60 point UFA winger for 3 solid assets.

  16. Paper Designer says:

    I think you’re right; clarity is an issue.

    When you look at the players who are doing relatively well right now, they’re the ones that know exactly what their role on this team is. Penner, Horcoff and Hemsky know they’re the go-to line, and have been been consistent on a team that hasn’t. The fourth line knows that they exist to crash, bang and create the odd garbage goal, and they’re doing exactly that. Souray and Vishnovsky both seem to know what they’re doing, Gilbert seems to have found his way after adjusting to a different role on this team, and Smid seems to have finally found out that he can be a physical, shut-down bottom pairing defender, who might become more as he grows into that role. I wonder if Staios is still trying to figure out what, exactly, he’s supposed to be as a defenceman at this stage of his career.

    Where the real mess on this team is, is lines 2 and 3. Basically, you’ve got a hodgepodge that includes Moreau, Reddox, Cole, Gagner, Nilsson Cogliano and Pouliot. If you didn’t look at performance, the lines would be pretty obvious; Pouliot and Moreau on the third line, and whichever of the kids is not producing much at the moment joins them. But Pouliot’s been decent and at this point, we need to see if this kid has it in him to be anything more than a bottom six forward. Gagner has done mostly nothing, Nilsson may be in trouble with his coach and Cole clearly does not bring enough in a role as a pure checker. Do you stick with them, hoping something forms? Or do you pull one of the kids from the farm that’s desperate to stick (Schremp, Potunly, Brule) and let them force the line-up to change around them? If you do that, who do you trade, and when? How are you going to accommodate the return of Pisani, who is probably their best pure defensive forward (alongside Horcoff)?

    Honestly, I think lines 2 and 3 are even muddier than the goaltending situation.

  17. Traktor says:

    Put it this way:

    If Reasoner was still on the team and Edmonton was still struggling would anyone possibly be stupid enough to blame Reasoner for the teams troubles?

    Of course not!

    Horcoff only has 11 EV points.

    Cole only has 9 points.

    Gagner only has 8 points.

    Penner was 12th in the league in PP goals last year and took him off the PP to start the year.

    Smid lost his job to a dime a dozen plug.

    ect ect ect

    If Reasoner was on the team it wouldn’t be his fault the team is struggling so how the hell can the lack of Reasoner be the reason this club is struggling?

    “Oh but there’s nobody to take his tough minutes.”

    Yes, Reasoner got fed to the wolves last year but he got destroyed. Brodiziak and Pouliot can bleed goals too.

    It’s like respecting your friend because he picked a fight with Mike Tyson and got one punched. Anyone can get one punched!

    Horcoff, Moreau and Staios have all been good on the PK in the past and are horrible this year. To suggest the PK problems is a lack of Stoll or Reasoner is bullshit. If Horc, Moreau and Staois were doing their job on the PK and it was still stuggling then one would have a point but that’s not the case.

  18. Lowetide says:

    Brule with a couple of goals for Springfield today. I wonder if he gets the call anytime soon.

  19. Schitzo says:

    Traktor: Keeping Reasoner only makes sense if you believe that keeping MacT comfortable is important.

    If I was the GM I would have taken it rather personally that given Pouliot and Brodziak the coach chose “none of the above” for 3C. Apparently Lowe is more easygoing than I am.

    Perhaps my point would have been argued if stated it as keep MacT and one of the two centres, or unload both centres and find a coach willing to work with what he’s been given.

  20. hunter1909 says:

    It’s a 80+ game season. There are no “must win” games, other than all of them.

    That’s what’s wrong with this team. These ‘must win” situations, where this mediocre bunch invariably fails.

  21. Lowetide says:

    I think we make a mistake when we talk about these decisions being made in a vacuum. If I say “well MacT must have had some input” the response is “once again, Loweapologists can’t handle the truth.”

    But I believe in this specific case that there may have been a disconnect based on:

    1. MacT’s public comments about Reasoner and Lowe’s response at the time.

    2. The fact that MacT has not adopted the obvious roster replacements.

    For those who don’t remember the MacT/Lowe exchange in June, it’s discussed here:

    http://lowetide.blogspot.com/2008/06/somethings-gotta-give.html

    As always, the comments section is maybe the most important thing to read.

    In regard to Pouliot within the organization here are afew quotes:

    March 2008 Prendergast: “I think we’d have to play him at center though and make the decision that we’d have to live with [his mistakes] for the short term.”

    Februrary 2008 Buchberger: “If there’s one weakness it would be his down low coverage in the defensive zone.”

  22. slipper says:

    Reasoner is getting “fed to the wolves” in ATL this season and is putting up some of the only respectable results on the team. Last year the Oilers were terrible for the most part and developing half their roster en masse. Any body in the 19 role would have been slaughtered.

    In the mean time a mere $1,000,000 would have shored up face-offs and the penalty kill for the current development season. Reasoner was the Oilers’ best penalty killing forward for atleast the past two season- on a PK that was good! He’s currently plying the same trade for the Thrashers. In a season where the NHL implement the powerplay face-off rule, signing Reasoner for peanuts was a no brainer.

    No evidence, either on paper or by the eye, could support replacing Reasoner’s minutes with Brodziak, Pouliot or Pisani playing pivot. Then when you look at the bigger picture and identify that they were replacing both Reasoner’s and Stoll’s ice-time, it make zero sense.

  23. Dennis says:

    Traktor: here’s a better idea: get rid of 18 al-to-fucking-gether.

    Guy runs his mouth in the press all the time yet he’s the ass who takes the most stupid penalties.

  24. gary b says:

    love the old C&W.

    current faves include Del Reeves' "Girl On the Billboard". Dolly is still going strong, and Mr. Waggoner put out a nice record not all that long ago before he passed on.

    Man, would this ever be a good time for this team to put it all (somewhat) together. Getting some help tonight, too, Chicago is putting the boots to the Wild.

  25. HBomb says:

    Tootoo takes a run at Hemsky. A response is an absolute must – the no-talent sideshow cannot be allowed to pull that shit.

  26. Derek says:

    Hemsky quite possibly concussed on that hit.

    The timing seems about right when it looks like they may finally get their crap togethor.

  27. HBomb says:

    Ok, fuck Moreau, your wrist is hurt, let Stortini take care of Tootoo.

    Stupid.

  28. Temujin says:

    Tootoo is my hero.

    Next to Dan Hamhuis.

  29. HBomb says:

    Tootoo is my hero.

    Considering you’re a fan of a team that’s employed Todd Bertuzzi, Jarko Ruutu, Ryan Kesler, Matt Cooke AND Alex Burrows, I’m not surprised.

    Erat scores, 1-0 Preds. Oilers looking horribly flat so far.

  30. HBomb says:

    Tootoo hit Hemsky, someone needs to run at Erat. Eye for an eye.

  31. Temujin says:

    Nice to see Oilers attempting to dive and block shots, but not very good when it takes two guys right out of position.

  32. mc79hockey says:

    Interesting thing about that GA – two Oilers went down to block the shot. I’ve spent part of the past week building a Corsi DB and I’ll be interested to see what it says about the frequency of Oilers shotblocking this year. I don’t think two Oilers going down to block a shot would have been notable in years past.

  33. HBomb says:

    Hemsky’s back, good.

    Ales, stick it up Nashville’s ass and score a hattrick.

  34. oilerdago says:

    HBomb, someone needs to run at Dumont or Arnott. Running at Tootoo is no deterrent and plays into Nashville’s hands.

    Nice to see Hemsky’s

  35. Temujin says:

    I’ll bet Hemsky gives up a great scoring chance on the PP and passes the puck.

  36. HBomb says:

    See what happens when you cycle down-low on the powerplay? Souray opens up.

    GREAT work by Gagner on that man-advantage.

  37. Temujin says:

    Souray: Great defenseman, or greatest defenseman?

  38. oilerdago says:

    SssouRay!!!

  39. HBomb says:

    HBomb, someone needs to run at Dumont or Arnott. Running at Tootoo is no deterrent and plays into Nashville’s hands.

    I suggested Erat. Dumont would also work.

    Arnott’s a big boy who can handle himself. Pick on one of their pure-skill guys.

  40. Temujin says:

    Will Souray win the hardest shot in the Oil skills comp?

    The answer seems obvious to me. Is there any other Oiler who can blast it like he can?

  41. Coach pb9617 says:

    Gagner loses a defensive zone faceoff [what the hell is he doing out there on a defensive zone faceoff anyway???], then wanders around the zone like a kid playing floor hockey. His line ices, and he loses the following faceoff, proceeds to wander around the zone cluelessly and gives up a goal.

    In the end, he’s going to get a pat on the head for the great power play work.

    *sigh*

  42. Bruce says:

    See what happens when you cycle down-low on the powerplay? Souray opens up.

    A key play in that excellent PP sequence was by Souray himself. A Nashville guy closed off the point-to-point pass back to Visnovsky so Souray took it up the boards and down behind the goal line, dished it off and got back into position for the big bomb.

    GREAT work by Gagner on that man-advantage.

    Yes it was. He needed that too, after a dreadful shift on the Nashville goal.

  43. Bruce says:

    Coach: Yup.

  44. mc79hockey says:

    Vic had a great post about the time a goalie has to react to a shot a few years back. When you factor in that the goalie actually has to see the shot, I suspect that pretty much all that’s stopping Souray when he really gets to unload whether or not he puts it on net in a spot where the goalie ain’t.

  45. Lowetide says:

    Also, my throat is sore. Fucking Gagner.

  46. HBomb says:

    Horcoff at even-strength.

    Weak goal on Ellis, but they’ll take it, obviously.

  47. Coach pb9617 says:

    When was the last time that the Oilers scored a goal and Penner wasn’t on the ice?

  48. mc79hockey says:

    Re: my previous post – Horcoff, not so much.

  49. oilerdago says:

    That’s why you just thrown them on goal. Sometimes it goes in.

  50. HBomb says:

    Fuck, and just like that, they give it back.

    Weber > Phaneuf. Hell, Weber > Souray.

  51. Temujin says:

    Wow, somebody needs to prevent that pass.

    Poor Roloson getting hung out to dry.

  52. Coach pb9617 says:

    Someone replaced Grebs’ acid with piss and vinegar tonight.

  53. Derek says:

    Gilbert watched the guy go by him before he turned…. why? Christ.

  54. Bruce says:

    Gilbert was completely out to lunch on that play. Joel Ward burned him? For shame.

  55. oilerdago says:

    Nshville is forechecking hard tonight. I’ll bet that before the nights over someone gets sprung on a home run pass.

  56. danny says:

    traktor, the oil have been pretty solid at ES this season. The reason that marty was suggested is because he would help fill the penaltykill void left by Stoll.

    As MacT says, it’s not only what you get, but alsovwhat you give up. So your point of lack of ES points, reallly hasn’t been the fatal flaw this season. Have a look at the PK numbers. Marty could be useful in that role.

  57. Black Dog says:

    Last shot wins?

    Anyone have a line on a feed for this one?

  58. Temujin says:

    http://www.justin.tv/indiocanada

    It’s a little laggy but better than nothing.

    Haven’t tried Sopcast, but they probably have a feed too.

  59. Coach pb9617 says:

    Poor Deslauriers. He hasn’t played since Calgary had a good team.

    This has to end, one of these goalies has to go, even if it means Fernandez and Deslauriers or Roloson and Labarbera next year.

    JDD has not seen action in four full weeks.

  60. Bruce says:

    First period faceoffs:

    Horcoff 2-2, 50%
    Cogliano 4-2, 67%
    Brodziak 3-1, 75%
    Gagner 1-6, 14%

  61. Coach pb9617 says:

    Gagner 1-6, 14%

    *drinks*

  62. Lowetide says:

    Coach: I was reading somewhere at HF that there’s an NHL rule stating if a player doesn’t play for an entire month he qualifies to head down to the AHL for conditioning.

    The Oilers apparently will send down JDD this week.

  63. Coach pb9617 says:

    Coach: I was reading somewhere at HF that there’s an NHL rule stating if a player doesn’t play for an entire month he qualifies to head down to the AHL for conditioning.

    The Oilers apparently will send down JDD this week.

    I heard the same thing, but I can’t find any official reference to that rule. Do you have a source?

  64. Black Dog says:

    Thanks Temujin

  65. Lowetide says:

    No, none.

  66. Bruce says:

    HBomb: Got a tincture called The Lost Faceoff?

  67. boopronger says:

    big stop roli

  68. Lowetide says:

    Pouliot looked poor on that play, and good on Zack for standing in against Belak.

  69. Temujin says:

    Good fight

  70. JB-"jiggyman" says:

    First goal: Staios has possession behind the net, rings it around the boards to a Predator. Nashville holds the zone for another 30 or so seconds. Staios gets the puck with little pressure and ices it…

    resulting in a goal to the right of Roloson, while Staios takes the guy doing nothing infront of the net.

    This guys horrible..

  71. Lowetide says:

    JB: You missed it. It was all Gagner’s fault, including the lucky bounce that allowed Erat to slip it by Roloson.

    Good try though. Five E’s for Gagner on that play.

  72. Bruce says:

    Did I read somewhere about Pouliot having trouble down low in the defensive zone? That was terrible. Who is this Joel Ward guy anyway?

    Great breakout pass from Penner to Hemsky a couple minutes back.

  73. oilerdago says:

    That was a nice move by Cole. Too bad he could not finish.

    The man is due a good break.

  74. Temujin says:

    Cole is just stymied.

    But I’d suggest in the future he not shoot it directly at the goaltender.

  75. Bruce says:

    LT: I’m not down on the guy like Coach is, but you’d need opaque rose-coloured glasses to not conclude Gagner had a very tough shift on the first GA. It was a lucky bounce, but the chaos that preceded it was no accident. Plenty of errors to go around, it wasn’t just Sam, but he was complicit.

  76. mc79hockey says:

    I like how Gene doesn’t just leave us to imagine what putting baby powder on a stick looks like but actually acts it out. Why not just go to a test pattern or something for thirty seconds?

  77. Coach pb9617 says:

    LT: I’m not down on the guy like Coach is, but you’d need opaque rose-coloured glasses to not conclude Gagner had a very tough shift on the first GA. It was a lucky bounce, but the chaos that preceded it was no accident. Plenty of errors to go around, it wasn’t just Sam, but he was complicit.

    When LT’s manlove for him wears off, he’ll see it.

  78. Lowetide says:

    Coach: I’m 47. Please.

  79. Lowetide says:

    Coach: What did Gagner do wrong there?

  80. oilerdago says:

    Cole finishes! Almost missed too!

  81. Temujin says:

    So Cole gets a flukey one.

    This could be the start of something beautiful.

  82. Coach pb9617 says:

    Gifts. Slumps can be ended by gifts.

  83. Temujin says:

    Ellis looked terrible there.

  84. oilerdago says:

    Some nights ya just gotta throw it at the net. Yeah Cogs.

  85. Lowetide says:

    I think the fluke goal count is tipping in EDM’s favor after the Cogliano goal.

  86. mc79hockey says:

    You pop a couple of those annually, the shooting percentage will stay up.

  87. Black Dog says:

    Well Cole has a couple now in what, the last three or four games?

    Assist tonight as well.

    And a post the other night.

    Getting there.

  88. oilerdago says:

    Very true LT. Some nights they just go in and this has been one.

    And we’re way overdue for it too.

  89. mc79hockey says:

    That Cole goal was a funny one too. Guy has had a ton of great chances of late and that one goes in because he got under it and hit a pop fly.

  90. Bruce says:

    Wow. Some bounces.

    I was just going to write a post about how Gagner’s excellent vision might complement Cole’s seeming lack thereof, and wham! The way Cole is skating these nights if Gagner can get him the puck with room to move they could really click.

  91. Black Dog says:

    Was it Julian at your site who had a link to guys with some crazy shooting %, Ty?

    Tanguay is another, I think.

    Give it to 13, he gets right in close. Not afraid to get in there.

  92. boopronger says:

    gagner baby!

  93. Black Dog says:

    Hmmm, maybe onto something here.

  94. Temujin says:

    And of course, Gagner gets one and no one will remember the bad stuff

  95. Lowetide says:

    E for Gagner on that goal. Almost got in the way! Little shit.

  96. oilerdago says:

    Liked how the d’man hit Gagner on that one and he still had the presence of mind to get his stick on it. Maybe he’s gaining confidence w/Cole.

  97. quain says:

    Extend the coach! Look how motivated they are!

  98. Coach pb9617 says:

    Coach: I’m 47. Please.

    No one is old enough to escape a mancrush.

  99. Temujin says:

    Cue the Oiler collapse in 5-4-3-2…

  100. Lowetide says:

    Coach: Believing someone’s talent is not a mancrush. Pissing on someone because they remind you of someone you coached is a little weird, though.

  101. Coach pb9617 says:

    Give it to 13, he gets right in close. Not afraid to get in there.

    By “there”, do you mean “behind the net”?

    And of course, Gagner gets one and no one will remember the bad stuff

    He had his H.U.A. for this game, though he’s due for a blind drop pass.

  102. oilerdago says:

    Cue the Oiler collapse in 5-4-3-2…

    Hey Temujin, it’s too early. Wait til there’s :30 left in the period…

  103. Coach pb9617 says:

    E for Gagner on that goal. Almost got in the way! Little shit.

    There are 30 games of pure crap to make up for before you can get lippy.

  104. Black Dog says:

    In general coach, in general.

    Snarky.

  105. Lowetide says:

    Oh, coach.

  106. Coach pb9617 says:

    Coach: Believing someone’s talent is not a mancrush. Pissing on someone because they remind you of someone you coached is a little weird, though.

    You keep trying to press a button that doesn’t exist.

    He’s sucked this year. He’s played a terrible physical and mental game and he’s made repeated mental errors. This is not up for debate.

  107. Lowetide says:

    Coach: He’s played poorly, there’s no doubt. But those “early season at-bats as an investment” may end up working as coach MacT hoped.

    But hang in there, I’m sure he’ll do something a gifted teenager would do here right soon.

  108. Coach pb9617 says:

    Snarky.

    There is no snark in Cogliano shooting 33% this year because he can get his nose dirty.

    Book it.

  109. oilerdago says:

    Puck movement has been excellent on this PP. Guys moving their feet – good cycling. Just not finishing.

  110. mc79hockey says:

    Yeah, it was Julian. List is here.

  111. Temujin says:

    Ellis with two big stops, will spark a Preds comeback!

    I get the feeling Tootoo is going to do something not-very-nice in the 3rd period

  112. Lowetide says:

    I think Ellis is feeling shame on the bench.

  113. mc79hockey says:

    Oddly enough, Horcoff is on the active leaders list (min. 800 career shots) too, at 45.

  114. Bruce says:

    SHOOOOOOOT, Ales!

  115. oilerdago says:

    So what does Penner say to Souray between periods after taking that shot?

  116. boopronger says:

    i noticed that too mc79 and all i hear from horcoff bashers is that he always shoots the puck right in the goalies chest.

  117. Coach pb9617 says:

    I told Dad about the Cogliano / Goring comp and he laughed it off because he hated Goring.

    He just called to tell me that Cogs’ goal ‘was a Goring goal’.

    Now for that Conn Smythe.

  118. Temujin says:

    Thank God for the Rexall Reminder program.

    What would we do without it?

  119. Coach pb9617 says:

    Coach: He’s played poorly, there’s no doubt. But those “early season at-bats as an investment” may end up working as coach MacT hoped.

    Again, I have no problem with them. My problem is that there is no rolled up newspaper on the nose when those at-bats go horribly.

    You can only stand there with the bat on the shoulder watching a 1-2 fastball go bye before you deserve a smack in the back of the head.

  120. Bruce says:

    Second period faceoffs:

    Horcoff 3-7, 30%
    Cogliano 0-4, 0%
    Brodziak 1-2, 33%
    Gagner 1-2, 33%

    Oilers 6-17, 26%

  121. Coach pb9617 says:

    I get the feeling Tootoo is going to do something not-very-nice in the 3rd period

    That’s almost a certainty. I hope that the guys on the blueline are aware of this.

    I’d actually like to see someone drop the gloves with him in the first minute to chase him from the game.

  122. Bruce says:

    That said, nice to see three of the guys who’ve really struggled at evens each score 5v5 tonight. Horc, Cole, Gagner … Nilsson is next.

  123. Coach pb9617 says:

    Jeremy Roenick 15.69

    I don’t know why, but that made me do a double-take.

  124. Lowetide says:

    Coach: How on earth do you know how MacT is handling him? The guy is a teenager! MAYBE he feels this is the best way to handle him and despite a lot of howls and moans over the years MacT has gotten a lot from the kids.

    I simply don’t understand this “why don’t they whip him!” mantra. It strikes me as something that could not only be counterproductive but also damaging.

    How can you not see that?

  125. Doogie2K says:

    So I decided to forego this game (as well as Canada’s 15-0 drilling of Kazakhstan — that’s just not fair) on the assumption that the Oilers would be shit against Nashville like they always are and lose 5-2, like they always do.

    Funny, I did this for the 7-2 game in Columbus, too. Maybe I’m on to something here…

  126. Black Dog says:

    coach – I am with you there – Penner and Nilsson and Brodziak and Stortini all get HS’d, Pouliot gets to lug MacIntyre and Boulerice around the ice but Sam escapes any sort of censure.

    He’s the golden boy for sure.

    Anyways lets see if he and Cole can keep this up. Those two putting up some numbers would give this team a nice push.

    ——

    What do you think Ty? Maybe 13 just doesn’t fit the pattern when it comes to shooting %. Maybe he’s one of those guys.

  127. Coach pb9617 says:

    So what does Penner say to Souray between periods after taking that shot?

    “You owe me a beer.”

  128. Coach pb9617 says:

    Cogliano 0-4, 0%

    *drinks*

  129. Coach pb9617 says:

    Coach: How on earth do you know how MacT is handling him?

    He’s the shittiest player on the team for thirty games and hasn’t had a single mention in any interviews. Guys who are playing much better than him have been HSed.

    I simply don’t understand this “why don’t they whip him!” mantra. It strikes me as something that could not only be counterproductive but also damaging.

    A period between Strudwick and Stortini after throwing his second blind drop pass to the other team isn’t going to damage his psyche. Sending him to the PB for a game isn’t going to crush his supposedly indomitable spirit or bring a halt to his dizzying hockey intellect.

    If he’s half of what you and others claim him to be, these are things that players much greater than he have suffered previously.

  130. HBomb says:

    HBomb: Got a tincture called The Lost Faceoff?

    Not yet, but I’ll come up with something. Right after I figure out a concoction worthy of the name “Sin Bin 18″.

  131. Black Dog says:

    Nice backcheck by Stortini there.

  132. Lowetide says:

    If Gagner went to the 4line or was a HS I don’t think it’s the end of the world either.

    However, MacT has chosen to go another route. Why does it matter to you that the coach has handled him differently?

  133. pboy says:

    If you take into consideration expectations on players before the season, there is no way in the world Gagner has been our worst player. He’s 19 years old. Yes, he hasn’t looked good and he has been repeating errors but he is not the reason this team has been so inconsistent. Look no further than Captain lazy penalty and Not-So-Steady Steve if you want to point fingers out our most disapointing players.

  134. Coach pb9617 says:

    Anyways lets see if he and Cole can keep this up. Those two putting up some numbers would give this team a nice push.

    And how. That would give Cogliano Pisani on his RW and Pouliot on the left.

    Neither line can win a faceoff, but they won’t be completely overmatched.

    Oh Kevin Lowe, why hath though forsook us.

  135. HBomb says:

    And how. That would give Cogliano Pisani on his RW and Pouliot on the left.

    Penner Horcoff Hemsky
    Nilsson Gagner Cole
    Cogliano Pouliot Pisani
    Moreau Brodziak Stortini

    I like it.

  136. Black Dog says:

    I loved Kevin Kline in A Fish Called Wanda.

    coach – that’s how I would do it but we all know Moreau is going to stick in the top nine. It would be Pouliot who gets the shaft.

  137. Lowetide says:

    BD: It’ll be Nilsson. Nilsson for sure.

  138. HBomb says:

    coach – that’s how I would do it but we all know Moreau is going to stick in the top nine. It would be Pouliot who gets the shaft.

    And that’s just wrong. Moreau’s a fourth liner right now and nothing more.

    My issue with that is the fact we’ve got 4.7 million in combined cap hit sunk into a third pairing defenseman and fourth line LW who are worshipped as gods in this town based on supposed “leadership ability”, such as porous defensive zone coverage and badly-timed penalties.

  139. Black Dog says:

    LT – I could see that except good Nilsson is, well, good.

    He’s drawn three penalties tonight and has looked pretty good.

    If its bad Rowbert then he gets dropped but not if he’s good Rowbert.

  140. HBomb says:

    BD: It’ll be Nilsson. Nilsson for sure.

    Just as bad – Moreau should not be in the top nine on this team if they’re at “full health”.

  141. Coach pb9617 says:

    If you take into consideration expectations on players before the season, there is no way in the world Gagner has been our worst player.

    Based on performance, he’s been the worst player on the team.

    Staios has looked and the numbers show that he’s markedly better since Smid has been his regular partner, which means that mc was right about Strudwick.

  142. Coach pb9617 says:

    If Gagner went to the 4line or was a HS I don’t think it’s the end of the world either.

    And yet you get a chapped ass when someone suggests it.

  143. Coach pb9617 says:

    Penner Horcoff Hemsky
    Nilsson Gagner Cole
    Cogliano Pouliot Pisani
    Moreau Brodziak Stortini

    Dear lord I hope Roloson never freezes the puck.

  144. Jonathan says:

    Staios is fine. He isn’t worth 2.7 million a season, but then we knew that when Lowe signed him to it. Good player to have on the third pairing, provided he isn’t playing with Strudwick.

    Strudwick’s easily the worst player on the roster, by on-ice results.

  145. Coach pb9617 says:

    BD: It’ll be Nilsson. Nilsson for sure.

    Yessir.

    Moreau – Cogliano – Pisani.

    Cogliano is the freaking polar opposite of Reasoner…

  146. HBomb says:

    Staios is fine. He isn’t worth 2.7 million a season, but then we knew that when Lowe signed him to it. Good player to have on the third pairing, provided he isn’t playing with Strudwick.

    A smart team doesn’t sink that sort of money into a depth player when you could probably find someone to give you the same results for about half the price.

    Moreau and Staios are being paid for past glories, while Jan Hejda looks fantastic in Columbus and Curtis Glencross is generating a ton of positive stuff for the Flames.

  147. quain says:

    It’s cool how Tootoo doesn’t even play hockey. It’s like he’s just out there for a rec skate and nobody bothered to tell him the game started.

  148. HBomb says:

    Fucking Tootoo out there head-hunting. If he gets another shift, I hope MacT answers with Stortini.

  149. Jonathan says:

    A smart team doesn’t sink that sort of money into a depth player when you could probably find someone to give you the same results for about half the price.

    Who said this was a smart team? I can live with the Staios contract – I don’t like it, but I can live with it.

    Moreau and Staios are being paid for past glories, while Jan Hejda looks fantastic in Columbus and Curtis Glencross is generating a ton of positive stuff for the Flames.

    I’m still happy to give them a pass on Glencross because a) his agent sounded like a nut and b) he’s a small fish; when Hossa/Jagr are on the board, you don’t worry about Glencross.

    As for Hejda, that’s on both Lowe and MacT – it took MacTavish half the season to play him, and Lowe deciding not to sign him for 1M (third pairing money, for crying out loud) was asinine. Poor decisions get made, and that was one by the entire management group.

  150. Coach pb9617 says:

    LT, I’ve looked far and wide via the google and can’t find any reference to that conditioning rule except on Oilers message boards.

  151. Doogie2K says:

    Is the Pred’s powerplay extra anemic, or is Cole-Cogliano a legit PK duo?

    Feed choppiness notwithstanding…both?

  152. Black Dog says:

    In eighth place and past the Avs and Minnesota with this.

    By the slimmest of margins but still …

    Best way to solve the PK problem too – stay out of the box. Good policy.

  153. HBomb says:

    Jonathan: Not implying you said they were smart, just me saying I think they’re kind of out to lunch, missing out on potential bargains.

    On Glencross – I think that they should have had him signed before moving Torres. Hossa or Jagr notwithstanding, you still need to sign depth – landing one of the big fish should not have affected their ability to get Glencross signed, because (IMO), they were going to need to offload Souray or Penner if they had bagged Hossa.

    As for Hejda, all I’ll say is this – he’d look DAMN fine with Visnovsky right about now.

  154. Coach pb9617 says:

    Back in the day, there were a handful of Tootoos in every division and they were passed around from team to team in the off-season.

    Their shit was normally tolerated for a short while and then they were gone.

    Gary Rissling and Jimmy Mann come to mind quickly.

  155. Jonathan says:

    Jason Gregor mentions the one-month conditioning-stint rule here.

  156. Coach pb9617 says:

    Except for the really bad play in the first, Gilbert has been awesome tonight.

  157. Steven says:

    I believe the conditioning rule was stated from Jason Gregor at Oilersnation. He’s fairly connected so I would assume it’s true.

  158. Bruce says:

    We beat Nashville! We beat Nashville!!

    When’s the parade?

  159. Jonathan says:

    Hey everyone, the Oilers are now a .500 team.

  160. Lowetide says:

    A very good game overall. Roloson is Sponge Bob, the D isn’t running around as much and the offense is coming from secondary people.

    PLUS they’ve got a wounded, Bryan Murray hindered Ottawa team coming in. Maybe he’ll even trade Spezza before they get here.

  161. Bruce says:

    Gags is looking like a hockey player. Another month on that growth and he’ll be up to a Souray five o’clock shadow.

    Sam looked like a hockey player on the ice tonight too. Bounced back from the early mistake and really seemed to find some chemistry with Erik “Can’t Buy A” Cole. A fine performance by both, and does this team ever need that.

    A solid game by the entire defence corps as well. Perhaps Grebeshkov’s best game of the season.

    An easy win on a night Hemsky doesn’t get a sniff goes against the formula, but we’ll take it. I’m just happy to see Hemmer finish the game, and to see some of his teammates pick up the scoring slack.

  162. Coach pb9617 says:

    Jason Gregor mentions the one-month conditioning-stint rule here.

    It’s not covered in section 13.8, where the hell is it?

  163. Coach pb9617 says:

    AHA!

    Is it Section 13.2 (b) ?

  164. Lowetide says:

    How small is that Charger runnin back who just scored? Is that Gary Coleman?

  165. Coach pb9617 says:

    How small is that Charger runnin back who just scored? Is that Gary Coleman?

    5’6″ 175

    In other words, Theo Fleury.

  166. Coach pb9617 says:

    Paul Stastny is expected to miss at least six weeks after suffering a fractured right forearm

  167. Lowetide says:

    The Oilers could be tied with Vancouver this time next week. No pressure.

  168. Bruce says:

    Oh yeah, third period faceoffs:

    Horcoff 3-2, 60%
    Cogliano 0-2, 0%
    Brodziak 4-1, 80%
    Gagner, 2-4, 33%

    On the night:

    Horcoff, 8-11, 42%
    Cogliano 4-8, 33%
    Brodziak 8-4, 67%
    Gagner 4-12, 25%

    At least one of those youngsters seems to be getting it.

  169. Coach pb9617 says:

    Horcoff, 8-11, 42%
    Cogliano 4-8, 33%
    Brodziak 8-4, 67%
    Gagner 4-12, 25%

    What is Adam Oates up to?

  170. Dennis says:

    Goals from Both 26-89 AND five goals overall without one point from 83?

    Well, that is certainly something, no?

    Anyone hear MacT’s presser? That link doesn’t work for me on the official site.

    BTW, the Oilers have owned the Sens to the degree that I don’t know if I should bet $100 On them or Against them. That roll’s gotta come to an end soon even though the Sens haven’t been any hell now since last November.

    It was mentioned around here that really the only chance for 26-89 was if they happened to play together. It took until the 19th vs the Ducks for that to happen so, in the words of Ric Ocasek, “What took you so long?”

    Let the good times roll?

  171. Asiaoil says:

    Schizo said: Lowe's job didn't seem too complicated in the off-season.

    Reasoner or Stoll: Pick one
    Torres or Glencross: Pick one
    Greene or Smid: Pick one

    That's about the clearest way of putting it that I've seen. We off-loaded a ton of grit in the summer for no real reason and Lowe's fascination with under-sized forwards is a head-scratcher: Cogs, Gags, Rowbert, Schremp, Brule, Eberle. Just not enough minutes to go around and some are already dying on the vine (Schremp).

    Here is my mildly alternate universe Oilers:

    Penner Horcoff Hemsky
    Torres MAP/Cogs Cole
    Glencross Reasoner Pisani
    Brodziak MAP/Cogs Voracek

    Visnovsky Hejda
    Gilbert Souray
    Smid Grebeshkov

    Notably absent are over-rated, over-paid leadership twins Moreau and Staios. Nice to get a win tonight – but the team is still wildly unbalanced and the GM is still on his annual Aug-Feb R&R stint for a few more weeks.

  172. Lowetide says:

    Asia: I’m not sure they’ll stand Pat (that should be Lowe’s first name, Pat. Pat Lowe) this time.

    The coach is in peril here and the needs are plenty obvious. I think they make a trade in the next 10 days.

  173. Asiaoil says:

    You may be right LT – but the needs were clear as day in the summer as well and here it is almost January. Not that anyone should be surprised given the track record.

  174. namflashback says:

    On the running dialogue re: Gagner by Coach and Lowetide.

    MacT has always had tighter reigns on either:
    - veterans in terms of GP
    - older prospects at the bottom of the order

    Which totally makes sense. Robert Nilsson is a 5th year pro with over 150 GP (or nearly over). 23 or 24 years old too. Penner is 25 years old.

    Sam Gagner only recently became legal to drink in several Canadian provinces. 19 years old.

    MacTavish gave Stoll and Torres all sorts of time and space to find their games. When they were old enough to be better/know better/and do better, he whipped them.

    I don’t think you can do that with Sam.

  175. Coach pb9617 says:

    It was mentioned around here that really the only chance for 26-89 was if they happened to play together. It took until the 19th vs the Ducks for that to happen so, in the words of Ric Ocasek, “What took you so long?”

    It took 20 games to put the first line back in place and you’re wondering why it took 30 to put two slumping forwards together?

  176. Lowetide says:

    I think MacT does this every year, though. Just like Earl Weaver with his pitching staff. Fiddle with the rotation in the spring and April, make the rookies throw long relief (and the injured guys + weirdo lefties like Tippy Martinez) and figure out if you can put up with another season of Don Stanhouse.

    By April 30, Earl knew what he had and he also knew who got the ball after the 7th inning.

    That’s MacT. Except that he knew he’d need Reasoner in the summer, and I expect that the Oilers correct it here in the next few days.

    Among the possibles heading the other way: Garon, Nilsson, Schremp, Peckham.

    And I’d trade a bunch of guys before any of them but there you go.

  177. Coach pb9617 says:

    LT – I think they’ll make the trade too, but it scares the snot out of me.

    What can they possibly give up right now that is of enough value to land a center that can break 50% on the dot?

  178. Lowetide says:

    Coach: I think it’ll cost them Nilsson.

  179. Coach pb9617 says:

    Among the possibles heading the other way: Garon, Nilsson, Schremp, Peckham.

    And I’d trade a bunch of guys before any of them but there you go.

    Answered before asked.

    Nilsson and Peckham going the other way is what scares me. There is no other defenseman in the organization that has any, uh, chutzpah. There are a bunch of free-skating kids that should have mullets :)

    And Nilsson’s contract is fantastic. However, I wouldn’t mind Nilsson, Schremp, and Moreau and some stuff for Reasoner and Armstrong :)

  180. Lowetide says:

    I’d love to have Armstrong. Smid’s impressive season means that Peckham is a little more expendable (but I agree completely it would be better if they could trade the fancy Dan’s) but he’s definitely a guy you’d keep under normal circumstances.

    Nilsson imo is the guy other teams are probably asking for. I mean he’s ridiculous in terms of skill and cost, plus when he’s into it the guy can play (just like Dad). So he’s a guy I can see Atlanta looking for in return.

    Where’s Holik? Is he still in the league?

  181. Coach pb9617 says:

    I’d love to have Armstrong. Smid’s impressive season means that Peckham is a little more expendable (but I agree completely it would be better if they could trade the fancy Dan’s) but he’s definitely a guy you’d keep under normal circumstances.

    Near impossible to trade a bunch of guys stuck in neutral, unless they’re proven.

    Nilsson imo is the guy other teams are probably asking for. I mean he’s ridiculous in terms of skill and cost, plus when he’s into it the guy can play (just like Dad). So he’s a guy I can see Atlanta looking for in return.

    Gah. Unless someone like Armstrong is on the way back, giving away that contract is just brutal. Even then, I don’t know if you can get Armstrong to take a contract like Nilsson’s.

    Where’s Holik? Is he still in the league?

    Hurt, I believe.

  182. Bank Shot says:

    Halpern’s a good choice if he’s availible.

    I’m not sure the Oilers would have to part with Nilsson to get him which is a plus. Tampa would probably go for prospects and some SAW VII advertising on the end boards.

  183. PunjabiOil says:

    Nilsson has really lost his game and passing creativity. He was apparently doing exceptionally well last year with EV/60 rates – where did that game go?

    Gagner, despite having a few points tonight, was underwhelming. He’ll definitely need to bulk up, and get stronger to win those battles. Again though, he ended last season with something like 27 points in 27 games, and none of the assists were secondary. We’ve yet to see his play resemble that type of dominance this season.

    RE: Lowe
    - Glencross should have been signed at 1.2M. I can understand balking at 1.8-2.0M – but 1.2M is very questionable. His agent went back to the Oilers (According to Sportsnet) and asked if they’d match – the Oilers said no. The excuses trotted out were a lack of roster spots – given Liam Reddox, Drew MacIntyre, and Zach Stortini are all Oilers, that doesn’t wash. Rosters aren’t also set on July 1 – excessive players can be moved.

    The Oilers instead decided it would be a good idea to pay Mathiue Roy .500M to play in the minors (why didn’t they buy him out for 167K – 83K cap hit over 2 years?), and next year they’ll pay JF Jacques (coming off major surgery – pointless in 53 NHL games) .550M to sit in the minors.

    -Trading Torres for Brule wasn’t too bad in my opinion. Torres is making far too much money, takes too many nights off (whopping 1 goal and 4 points in 14GP this year), and the return was sufficient. I really like the game Gilbert plays, and he’s shown good things in the limited action he’s had this year in the NHL. He’s got 11 goals in 19 games this year, so he’s faring well in the AHL. There is good potential of an NHL career here.

    -Trading for Cole may not have been wise. The red flags were there:

    http://punjabsoil.blogspot.com/2008/09/erik-cole.html

    Erik Cole posted 24 points in 28 games against Southeast division foes; 27 point in 45 games against all other NHL teams.

    He also played with Staal and Whitney on his line – he very well may have been a beneficiary, at least offensively speaking.

    When you’re trading a defenceman like Pitkanen, who is 2 years away from free agency, I’m not sure it’s prudent to acquire a 1 year rental. It’s probably going to cost the Oilers at least 3.5M (likely more) to re-sign Cole, and I’m not sure I do that given Penner helps the team win hockey games more. Acquiring Zherdev may have made more sense.

    -Hedja was obviously a big mistake. Howson really schooled Kevin Lowe on that.

    -Failing to sign Reasoner was a grave mistake. Did they even consider the impact of losing both Reasoner and Stoll?

    -Kevin Lowe also made mistakes on Moreau and Staios contracts. When signing any long term contract, the risks and rewards should be equitably distributed. The Oilers bore the risk of injury by signing them a year earlier (*cough Moreau HNIC cough*), and it’s very debatable whether either of the two players would receive more lucrative terms had they hit the UFA market. The length of the contracts was absurd too. Kevin Lowe also had an opportunity to sign Pisani at 1.1M (Agent’s asking price in January of 2006) but the Oilers balked and decided to wait it out until the end of the year, which subsequently cost them an additional 1.4M annually for 4 years. That really is where Lowe has fucked up – by vastly overpaying the bottom 6. That’s why losing Ryan Smyth hurt so much – such a tough stance on a reputable 1st liner, while opening the wallets for bottom 6 players. A shame, really.

    Meanwhile, Calgary has Moss (0.575M), Glencross (1.2M) and Bourque (1.3M) all outperforming the Oilers bottom six and making significantly less money.

    In summary (and this is beating a dead horse), Kevin Lowe is a sub par GM, has for whatever reason, and has undeservingly achieved a reputation of a top GM. MacT still continues to make rookie-esque coaching blunders, but the real root of the organization’s problem is Kevin Lowe, and the reason why this team is worse than it should be. I really hope he keeps his input to himself, and let Tambellini run the organization.

    Oh, and GOILERS!

  184. PunjabiOil says:

    And since we’re on the topic of trades:

    - Moreau can go – Pisani is only 2-3 weeks from returning – if Oilers.nhl.com is supposed to be reliable.

    - Is there still interest in Steve Staios, as per last year’s trade deadline?

    http://www.thehockeynews.com/articles/13092-THNcom-Blog-Steve-Staios-will-attract-deadline-interest.html

    “I know his plus-minus is awful this year,” the GM said of the 34-year-old Staios, tied for worst on the Oilers with a minus-15. “But let’s face it, he’s playing on an average team at best right now. And he’s got a manageable (contract) – I think he (earns) under $3 million (a year) for the rest of the deal – that’s probably going to be more and more attractive to teams interested in a defenseman that can eat up a lot of ice time.

    “Even if you don’t take his salary into account, on a better team, he’s simply a better player. I really think (Lowe) will get an offer for him – and under the right circumstances, it might even come from me.”

    - Consider moving Taylor Chorney. He’s a falling prospect (See: O’Marra, Ryan), with horrific numbers in the AHL (both offensively and defensively), and Lowe’s assertion that “He may make the team, and if he’s sent in the AHL, it won’t be for long” appears to be of the Kevin Prendergast variety.

    - Consider moving Jeff Petry. Read: Numerous evidence Lowetide has revealed to date about the said player.

    - Consider moving Plante. Still very suspect, but has inflated his numbers this year playing on a solid Hitmen team. If can be used in a package, I wouldn’t be opposed to moving him.

    - Schremp due to the fact that there will never be room for him in Edmonton.

    - Consider moving Erik Cole for an asset locked up beyond this season

    - Enquire if Spezza is still available. I love Horcoff to death, but a deal involving Spezza would be something I would consider.

  185. boopronger says:

    failing to resign reasoner was not a grave mistake

  186. PunjabiOil says:

    I’d estimate failing to re-sign Reasoner has cost the Oilers 3-4 points in the standings this year.

    That is, in my opinion, an avoidable grave mistake.

  187. PunjabiOil says:

    Gagner/Voracek/Turris Watch:

    Gagner:

    31-3-7-10 -4

    Voracek:

    34-4-11-15 +9 (2nd on team behind Brassard)

    Turris:

    35-5-7-12 -8 (3rd worst on team)

  188. Asiaoil says:

    Gagner is a great little player – Voracek is a great bigger player – I was high on Voracek leading up to the draft and was delighted he dropped to us – the knock on him for conditioning was and is BS and I disappointed that we passed. Gagner is a good little player but we missed an opportunity to get a guy who is bigger and may end up being even better.

  189. Lord Bob says:

    Missed the game tonight, lads. Sorry.

    Still, good result. And I notice some guy named “Sam Gagner” scored tonight. Haven’t seen that name on the scoresheet before. He new?

  190. Doogie2K says:

    And I notice some guy named “Sam Gagner” scored tonight. Haven’t seen that name on the scoresheet before. He new?

    I thought we must’ve acquired Simon Gagne, except I noticed the name was spelled wrong. That explains it.

  191. slipper says:

    So Glencross should have been signed?

    I really think Lowe should have acquired Luongo for Pronger back in Summer 2006, but really don’t find the need to repeat in every game thread.

    Gagner looked excellent for most of the night. This could have been a 8-9 goal night and he easily could have 2 or 3 more assists. Christ, the kid is 19 years old.

  192. PunjabiOil says:

    Ales Hemsky is 24th in league scoring. Of the top 30 in league scoring, his 16 EV points are the lowest in that category. Not sure how this should be interpreted.

    On completely unrelated notes, Tomas Vanek has 25 goals already, and Doug Weight is 2 points away from joining the 1,000 club.

  193. hunter1909 says:

    Sounds like the perfect OIlers scored last night.

    Souray our best player with a goal and assist…

    Horcoff the player we fret about lol a goal…

    Cole who is getting traded or leaving as a UFA a goal and assist…

    Cogliano proves he can score anywhere in the lineup…

    Gagner our jewel getting a goal and assist thank fuck for that…

    Traktor: Stop worrying about other teams. Oilers have half their bloody season to win points..what’s so fucking impossible about that?

    note: you can see the players talking to each other, since the “coach” is too busy worrying about other affairs, like where he will be in 12 months, lol.

  194. Schitzo says:

    There was one play tonight, I think at the end of the first.

    We have 3 centres on for the draw in our own end: 51, 13, 78.

    51 gets waived out, 78 tries to enter the circle, and Cogs waves him back to take the faceoff himself, which he promptly loses.

    THESE are the things that make me drink.

  195. bookie says:

    failing to resign reasoner was not a grave mistake

    Yes, but only because MacT was in such a state of panic without his bestest friend that he pouted by attempting to play half the team in stupid lineup positions for the first 1/3 of the season.

    btw, that was a good 60 minutes out there tonight. We have not seen that lately.

  196. Traktor says:

    Horcoff, Cole and Gagner all come to play on the same night and we get the win. That’s what it comes down to. When your best players are your best players you win games.

  197. Traktor says:

    “I’d estimate failing to re-sign Reasoner has cost the Oilers 3-4 points in the standings this year.”

    Go back to HFBoards you HF clown.

  198. Doogie2K says:

    “I’d estimate failing to re-sign Reasoner has cost the Oilers 3-4 points in the standings this year.”

    Go back to HFBoards you HF clown.

    3-4 points might be an exaggeration, but there’s no sense denying that an experienced penalty killer with faceoff skills would do this team a world of good right about now. Say what you will about your best players being your best players, if your role players aren’t getting the job done, you’re still going to bleed goals, and that’s still going to cost you games no matter how good your best players are.

  199. Jonathan says:

    Horcoff, Cole and Gagner all come to play on the same night and we get the win. That’s what it comes down to. When your best players are your best players you win games.

    I thought Hemsky was the Oilers’ best player?

  200. Traktor says:

    “I thought Hemsky was the Oilers’ best player?”

    He is. Which is why I said player(s).

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