Senators at Oilers, G35/08-09

This is Bill (William) Kenneth Goldthorpe. Goldie. Wild Bill. Harpo. The legend and the truth are not close. There are a few documented truths: He played for Port Arthur, the same town that produced (J) Bob Kelly. He was probably the toughest man in NHL history, and only because Goldie didn’t make it that far.

In 1980 in San Diego, Goldthorpe was shot in the stomach while trying to rescue an ex-girlfriend. He was a successful body builder. He was the inspiration for the character Ogie Ogilthorpe in the movie Slap Shot.

He may not have had a lot of talent, but he had character. He also played a few games for the Ottawa Civics (WHA) when that league was trying to create interest. Goldthorpe is probably more interesting than any of the current Ottawa Senators. That may be part of the problem.

The Ottawa Senators and the Edmonton Oilers have one very large fact in common: they lost a lot of men in the heart of their NHL careers in a very short period and replaced them with youngsters who may or may not develop. In doing so, they “cut off” the cluster of players who should be winning championships at this time.

Both teams have rosters that look askew, although the Oilers have repaired some of the damage since the summer of 2006. I’m sure Ottawa will too, and the new GM is going to have to trade some of the guys who should be bringing a Stanley to the nation’s capital.

A word of advice: get 5 assets for Jason Spezza.

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250 Responses to "Senators at Oilers, G35/08-09"

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  1. Black Dog says:

    The guys they have let go since their heyday:

    Chara, Redden, Corvo, Meszaros, Preissing, Hossa, Havlat, Schaeffer, Todd White, Bonk

    And little in return.

    They couldn’t afford all of these guys anyways but it just seems like a ton of mismanagement. Chara over Redden was the big one but I never understood the Hossa move. Hossa was one guy who got an unfair rap as a poor playoff performer. His last series v the Leafs he was the only Sen who had a topnotch performance.

    Throw in the coaching moves and the lifestyle issues on the club that were never addressed and we have a club that went from being one of the best managed to one of the worst.

    In fact you might even say that Murray has done a worse job then Lowe. I don’t see a lot of decent young talent there.

  2. oilerdago says:

    Black Dog – don’t forget that some of the poor talent evaluations go back to the days of Muckler as GM too.

    Murray does have a chance to begin to turn this around though with a good trade. And it would not surprise me if he gets the 5 for 1 kind of deal nearer to the trade deadline using Spezza. That would be the kind of deal to set them up for a good rebuild.

    But make no mistake, Ottawa is in rebuilding mode and what will be interesting is if their fan base and management has the patience to see it through.

  3. Asiaoil says:

    Muckler really screwed up a primo situation – what a total tool. Every year he would refuse to deal some of his precious talent for missing pieces (grit and goaltending) and subsequently wash out in the playoffs. Then the the death by a thousand cuts began as good players left for UFA. Could see it coming a mile off. As for Spezza – that’s one deal we don’t need to make – I’d take Horcoff any day as a player and a contract – especially at playoff time.

    You know the good thing is that the Oilers could be very competitive with only a little effort. We don’t need much more top 6 talent (aside from another bigger LW) and in fact we have an excess of small offensive guys to deal. A top 4 defense of Souray, Lubo, Gilbert and Smid is fine as well. Goaltendings a mess but one guy changes everything. Mostly what we need is stuff the UFA market or trades can supply – bottom 6 vet forwards, bottom pair dmen, a effective vet goalie. A new and innovative coaching staff wouldn’t hurt either. Lots of chips to trade to get the procier LW and goalie as well: Nilsson, Grebs, Moreau, Staios, Garon, JDD, Schremp, Chorney.

    I don’t think much happens until a change in mgmt and coaching occurs – but this team could become very good, very quickly with the right moves at the trade deadline and next summer.

  4. Black Dog says:

    oilerdago – oh yeah I know this one was a dual screwup – it was Muckler who dumped the majority of guys on this list

    but he also built a team that got the worst possible matchup in the finals for them – I think if it had been the Wings they might have won the Cup. Seriously.

    Murray took them over the cliff though.

    asiaoil – agreed on your assessment – ideally they could use a Cole type to play LW but really the issues this club has – lower end guys who can move the puck in the right direction, PK and bring some sandpaper – these types of guys can be picked up

    I see Smid replacing Grebs and Peckham sliding into that 6 hole. They love Strudwick and he’s cheap so he’s likely the 7.

    They really need to give Pouliot a shot at that 3 centre I think, a real shot with Pisani on his wing, to see if he can get the job done. If he can while chipping in 15 a year then you have two thirds of a pretty good line.

  5. pboy says:

    Whatever team gets holding the “Spezza” bag is going to regret it. If we sent them Horcoff for Spezza, I think I would have to take the rest of the season off. Sideshow Bob and Heatley are the guys carrying the water on that team and on that line, not say Spezza can’t play hockey but he is an extremely one dimensional player. If Murray is able to pry 4 or 5 assets from a team in return for Spezza, that will be a steal IMO. I just hope he doesn’t get that steal from the Oil…

  6. godot10 says:

    It wasn’t Muckler’s fault. Muckler was pretty much the only good thing that happened to the Senators.

    1) Chara wouldn’t sign a contract at any price. Muckler tried. Chara wouldn’t give him a number, which meant that he wanted to leave. When Chara wouldn’t sign, he was forced to sign the other UFA free agent defenseman…i.e. Reddon. Muckler hadn’t been in Ottawa long enough for him to be the reason Chara wanted to leave.
    2) Muck got Heatley for Hossa, so he made a reasonable save. Hossa, like Chara, was tired of Ottawa and Jacques Martin.
    3) Havlat read the Hossa playbook. He was tired of playing third fiddle behind Alfredsson and Heatley or Hossa. But unlike Hossa, Havlat was injury prone which made it difficult to pay him.
    4) Muckler gave the team a goaltender, i.e. Hasak, but Murray and the team didn’t want that goaltender.
    5) Todd White was let go to make room for Spezza, or Martin would have just kept playing White instead of Spezza.

    Pressing is a mediocre defenseman at best, and too expensive to re-sign for a #5. Corvo is strictly an offensive defenseman, and was also a cap decision.
    Meszaros wanted the same money that Gilbert and Carle and Whitney and etc. got, which in Ottawa would have made him higher paid than Phillips and Volchenkov.

  7. relic says:

    It’ll be interesting to see how Vermette matches up tonight. He seems like he might be a good fit here and Ottawa seems to need what the Oilers are offering.

  8. Bank Shot says:

    We shouldn’t forget that the Sens also let go of that Jarmo Kekäläinen guy.

    It’s hard to know exactly how much impact he had in Ottawa, but he was head scout from 1999-2001/2002 and the Sens pulled alot of NHL players out of the draft with only one high pick in that period.

    We’re talking Havlat, Kelly, Volchenkov, Vermette, Laich, Schubert, Zanon, Emery, Gleason, and Spezza in a three or four year period depending on whether he left before the 2002 draft. He supposedly had some input on that Hossa pick as well. Management always looks good when the talent keeps arriving on cue.

    Now he’s been in St.Louis for a few years and we’re seeing names like Backes, Stempniak, Polak, Oshie, Berglund, and Perron starting to come out of the woodwork.

    It seems like some scouts just have a real knack for seeing them good.

    Now we can talk about the Oilers lack of a solid third line pivot, and number #3 shutdown defenceman and those are solid points.

    I’d however, like to submit to the record that perhaps something that vexes the Oilers more then the lack of those things is the lack of legitimate top six forwards.

    The Oil have one forward on pace for 60 points this season. If they had two/three more of those guys that put up points while they simultaneously keep the puck away from the other team then they’d be in much better shape.

    If the Oilers want to go anywhere in the next couple of years they need to cash in their top six potential for a J.P Dumont rather then another Marty Reasoner.

    As it is sitting right now, the majority of their potential top sixers don’t score or defend at anything resembling an above average rate.

    I can wait for the potential top sixers to develop rather then trade for a quick fix, because if we look at today’s roster we can honestly say there are only two real bargain contracts on the roster (Hemsky, Cogliano) and that’s not nearly enough to make a serious run at any hardware.

  9. HBomb says:

    Vermette on the 3rd line with, say, Pisani and one of Cogliano or Pouliot?

    I like it. A lot.

  10. HBomb says:

    Ok, here we go, two new concoctions tonight, just in case I don’t get a chance to post tomorrow….

    1) “The Lost Faceoff”

    3 shots of premium Vodka (Smirnoff at MINIMUM) – flavored is allowed (HBomb reccomends Three Olives brand cherry-flavored variety)
    1 part Cranberry juice
    1 part Red Bull
    1 part 7-Up

    2) “Sin Bin #18″ (this is part drink, part drinking game)

    3 Shots premium rye (today’s selection at The HBomb Bar and Bistro is Tangle Ridge)
    Cola “for color”

    NOTE: Ingest one Sin Bin 18 for each penalty taken by Ethan Moreau. Make a 2-shot version (equal parts booze and coke) when Steve Staios gets burned in the defensive zone….this is called “Turnstyle #24″.

    Doing both these things on a good night for the Oilers will have you nicely plastered. On a bad night? Might as well just go to an equipment rentals shop and see if they have stomach pump units available for home use – saves you a trip to the hospital and having to wait in line behind a wobbly Lowetide after his kid decides to ride cardboard down the stairs, yet again.

  11. Jonathan says:

    4) Muckler gave the team a goaltender, i.e. Hasak, but Murray and the team didn’t want that goaltender.

    Maybe I’m remembering this wrong, but wasn’t Hasek hurt/jackass when he was in Ottawa? I recall hearing stories of Alfredsson and several other prominent players approaching Hasek to give it a try in the playoffs and he absolutely refused to even put on skates. At the time, Emery was getting killed, and the 3rd stringer was Mike Morrison. Asked about Morrison, Bryan Murray said, “He just isn’t ready”, which was a nice way of putting it given the way Morrison’s career nosedived the following year.

    Either way, the problems with Hasek can’t be blamed on the team – he was either hurt worse than the doctors figured (IIRC, they cleared him) or was being a headcase.

  12. Doogie2K says:

    Yeah, Hasek strained his groin for about the 17th time in the Olympics, and pulled the chute on the season shortly thereafter, leaving Emery and Mayor Quimby holding the bag. That’s not to say he didn’t make enemies in the room, but I think that’s more about the guys not wanting to put up with his shit later in the season than any preconceived notions, as seems to be implied.

  13. hunter1909 says:

    WTF does that dude ever look tough!

    Fuck the Senators. Another Canucks style hyped up palooka team with shithead fans who alternatively crow and then cower as soon as their butt-boys are booted every fucking time.

    Get Heatley.

    LOL

    They can have Horcoff, and his contract lol

  14. Schitzo says:

    but I never understood the Hossa move

    Well, it’s tough to argue with the return, anyways. One of the few deals where they didn’t come out absolutely hosed.

  15. uni says:

    I’m just curious as to when Smid made the turn from perennial 6th D to near lock on the top 4.

    Has he been that good lately?

  16. Jonathan says:

    Uni: Better than Staios or Strudwick, anyway. He’s firmly in that 4/5th defenseman plateau along with Grebeshkov at this point, imo.

  17. goldenchild says:

    With the way the Flames are going they need 2 points tonight.

    Tonight might be a good night to get Garon in and then go with Roli the next little bit.

    Cole seemed to be writing the ship the last handful of games 2 breakaways in Van on boxing day some strong games before that and then he gets the 3 point night. If he and gagner can keep it up I would love to see 34 play with 13 and 78 when he comes back and slide 18 down with 51.

    The Senators remind me of a team like the Cardinals in the NFL, all there money is spent on one thing, the Cards have all their money spent on the passing game having the best WR tandem isnt worth much whgen you cant run, stop the run or get the QB. Yes they made the playoffs in the worst div in football but they are inherently flawed and will be one and done.

    The Sens have all there money spent on 1 line, its amazing to thing they have gone from the D they had to the group they have now.

    Denis if your around, I started watching Madmen last week, I am halfway through season 2 now, Great fuckin show. Don Draper is the greatest American role model in television

  18. Nelson88 says:

    Thoughts on Fisher? Having a bad year and the contract is not a steal but isn’t he a RH C who could shoulder some of Horcoff’s defensive load and chip in some offence? Might revitalize him with a change of scenery.

    Ottawa needs more Fisher’s not less but have to be getting very desperate particularly for puck moving D men (Grebs?). Their D resembles the Oilers circa 06-07 and that is not good.

    If we are not a legitimate contender (were not) I would still prefer to let Poo and Brodziak grow into their roles. However; if you are a desperate coach/GM and want to significantly improve the chance to make the playoffs someone like Fisher might fit the bill.

  19. oilerdago says:

    Interesting point Nelson. If the Sens are smart, they try and get a 4/5 for 1 with a Spezza. Short of that, they could move Vermette or Fisher. The lack of a puck moving d-man hurts these guys the most because they need help manufacturing offense (where the top guys don’t have as big an issue with that).

    But does anyone think moving Grebs could bring one of them back or would we need to throw something else in the mix?

    Personally, I would not mind getting one of them as a center and have no prob seeing Smid get a bigger role. He’s looked solid since his adventures on the wing.

    Additionally, I think if they brought Peckham up it’d give us another enforcer – allowing us to free another roster spot being taken by Macintyre so we could see a Brule come up. He seems to be getting his scoring touch back in Springfield this year.

  20. hunter1909 says:

    It’s losing Chara that kills the Sens.

    Weird how the Bruin’s keep getting the top defencemen, just like the Oilers used to get good goalies and enforcers.

  21. godot10 says:

    //Yeah, Hasek strained his groin for about the 17th time in the Olympics, and pulled the chute on the season shortly thereafter, leaving Emery and Mayor Quimby holding the bag. That’s not to say he didn’t make enemies in the room, but I think that’s more about the guys not wanting to put up with his shit later in the season than any preconceived notions, as seems to be implied.//

    Those same guys were more than willing to put up with Emery’s shit, and Emery had done nothing in his career. Hasek had demonstrated that he was one of the best goaltenders in hockey history. One puts up with Hasek’s shit, because Hasek doesn’t pull the chute. When he’s healthy, he works harder in practice than anyone.

    The Senators, apart from Muckler, blamed Hasek for getting hurt. They never blamed Emery for being a narcissistic always-late-for-practice party animal.

  22. hunter1909 says:

    The history of hockey is loaded with teams like the Sens.

    The Sabres in the early 1970s, Bruins in the early 90s, the Sharks, all come to mind.

    Hell, didn’t they say the Oilers weren’t ever going to win anything, because Gretzky wasn’t really good enough?

  23. godot10 says:

    Grebeshkov and Schremp for Vermette would be a good deal. (i.e. Vermette, Gagner, Cole…Vermette would play left wing, and take the defensive zone draws, until Gagner gets better at them.

    Vermette is better value for money than Fisher.

    Although Grebeshkov and Nilson for Fisher would be okay also.

  24. quain says:

    Doesn’t matter though – I don’t see how you can tie up 11 million in two 50-60 point players centers.

    Get your numbers straight, it’s $14M and why are we talking about the Rangers?

  25. nancy says:

    From TSN ice chips:

    “Ales Hemsky will not play tonight, and likely won’t play tomorrow night against Calgary, after getting hit by Nashville’s Jordan Tootoo. Hemsky hurt his nose, hasn’t slept well, and is having breathing trouble. – TSN”

    That can’t be good.

  26. HBomb says:

    The other big differnce is he’s playing where he should (secondary scoring shutdown player) while Horcoff being asked to be a top line guy.

    Hey look kids! There’s Big Ben! And there’s parliament!

  27. HBomb says:


    “Ales Hemsky will not play tonight, and likely won’t play tomorrow night against Calgary, after getting hit by Nashville’s Jordan Tootoo. Hemsky hurt his nose, hasn’t slept well, and is having breathing trouble. – TSN”

    February 1st, vs. Nashville, I want to see Tootoo taken off the ice in a fucking box. Plain and simple.

    This complicates things bigtime – having your star player taken out by a no-talent sideshow shithead on a borderline hit.

  28. Black Dog says:

    With Hemsky out who draws in? Pouliot gets bumped up I presume? Reddox back in as well?

    The thing about Hemsky and Horcoff, among others, they generally don’t initiate contact but they’ll take the punishment as a rule.

  29. HBomb says:

    With Hemsky out who draws in? Pouliot gets bumped up I presume? Reddox back in as well?

    This is where it gets confusing. You’d think that putting Cole with Horcoff and Penner power vs. power would be a good idea, but Cole and Gagner seemed to have something going on Sunday night.

    Maybe Move Pouliot in with 27-10 on RW, put Brodziak between Moreau and Cogliano, and then use a fourth line of Strudwick-Reddox-Stortini selectively.

    Having both Hemsky and Pisani (two of the top three RW’s on the depth chart) out of the lineup really creates a dog’s breakfast of a lineup, that’s for sure. Hope this is only a 2-game thing for 83 (and that Tootoo pays for it on Super Bowl Sunday – will MacIntyre be healthy by then?)

  30. Jfry says:

    will S Mac be back in time for the next nashville game?

  31. relic says:

    are they calling anyone up? i think this might be a chance to give brule another look.

  32. Ribs says:

    You guys really think SMac could catch Tootoo?

  33. HBomb says:

    You guys really think SMac could catch Tootoo?

    I think this situation calls for a 2 or 3-on-1 beat-down, Broad Street Bullies style.

  34. rickibear says:

    “You guys really think SMac could catch Tootoo?”

    The image of the Nashville fans blowing the TOOTOO whistles as SMac chases him around the ice.

    Beutiful.

  35. HBomb says:

    What I’m interested (or scared, take your pick) to see tonight? The Oilers PP performance “sans Hemsky”.

    Do they let Gagner drive the bus off the half-boards with Cole and Penner/Horcoff? Does Nilsson get a shot there? Maybe we see Cogliano get some increased PP time?

    As long as MacT doesn’t go all Toby Petersen and throw Liam Reddox out there, I’ll be OK with any of several options.

  36. Doogie2K says:

    Those same guys were more than willing to put up with Emery’s shit, and Emery had done nothing in his career. Hasek had demonstrated that he was one of the best goaltenders in hockey history. One puts up with Hasek’s shit, because Hasek doesn’t pull the chute. When he’s healthy, he works harder in practice than anyone.

    Yes, but Emery’s shit was fun, at least to a certain element of the room. Hasek’s was probably frustrating or annoying, depending on if they thought he was really hurt or just being a perfectionist, respectively.

  37. Schitzo says:

    So is “nose problems” actually what it seems, or is this a concussion thing?

  38. Dennis says:

    Been drinking while watching lately:) but if 10′s playing the tough opp and he’s keeping his head above water than why can’t we call him a #1 centre?

    I don’t want this to veer off on what can or can’t be considered a #1 pivot but that’s where my mind always goes when I see Horc being slammed a little bit.

    GC: Yes, I’m around:) and Don Draper is the man. BTW, I mentioned this before but when he goes to Cali and hooks up with Joy, just remember you can see her naked in The Ruins.

    You are welcomed:)

    Oh and for TV fans, the season finale of S1 of Sons Of Anarchy was remarkable. Early on I liked it for it’s man’s perspective but they’ve done an excellent job of rounding out the characters, constructing and then re-enforcing the themes and setting up future conflicts.

    As for tonight, I was scared silly by how 83 looked after he got drilled by Tootoo. I’m not the least bit surprised that he’ll miss the next couple of games; that high hit screamed concussion to me. We all know the guy will go to the tough areas and he’ll sometimes go there with his head down so it’s a wonder he hasn’t missed way more games over the years. I haven’t seen how the lineup will look without him but it’s too bad we couldn’t bring up a kid to give him a little bit of a push with 27-10.

    LT didn’t mention 12′s absence at the optional skate so I’m thinking it’s one of three things:

    1: he had a great excuse
    2: he’s got a tremendous set of balls; was that his excuse I wonder? Maybe he pulled a Braylon Edwards.
    3: he doesn’t have a fucking clue.

  39. PDO says:

    Just more reason to loathe Tootoo.

    Guy doesn’t even know there’s a puck on the ice.

  40. Ribs says:

    I’d say it’s a nose problem if they mentioned breathing and sleep problems. It’s hard to do anything let alone play hockey when you can’t breathe through your nose and it hurts every time you try. Hopefully the swelling goes away quickly.

  41. Dennis says:

    HB and Pat: I like HB’s idea of 78 going on the RW with 27-10 and 51 getting a bump and then using 43-85-46 very sparingly but that kind of TOI-plan will hurt with the BTB tomorrow night in Cgy.

    If we work it like that it’s almost like we give up the chance of winning in Cgy unless Roli goes all-out And we give them two PP or less.

    As for the PP, yeah, just throw 89 the keys with 27-10 and let 12 play with 26-78 on the second unit.

  42. HBomb says:

    Dennis: Going with Lowetide’s “there are just some games you’re going to lose” baseball theory….I think tomorrow night’s game (second game of BTB, in Calgary, we’ve beat the Flames twice this year) could almost be considered a throwaway before it even starts with Hemsky out.

    I go with Roloson tonight (right now, he’s giving the team the best chance to win), roll three lines, and get the 2 points off Ottawa, then go to Calgary with Garon and play it very much like the game in November 2005 when the Oilers went in there with Pronger on the shelf. Consider even a point a huge bonus (that night in 2005, IIRC, they won in a shootout and Pisani got the winner).

    Rest Hemsky and hope he’s back Saturday.

  43. quain says:

    This thread has been edited for television viewing audiences.

    Hemsky plays right wing and is out. You know who else plays right wing?

    Penner-Horcoff-Stortini. Book it.

  44. Black Dog says:

    Yeah run Brodziak up with Cogliano and Moreau or even throw him up with 27/10 makes sense.

    Bad deal with the btb coming but what can you do? Play to win tonight and then worry about tomorrow tomorrow.

    Have to say that it does not sound severe (ie, not concussion) as it sounds like there is a minor possibility for 83 to play tomorrow.

    So that is good news at least.

  45. PunjabiOil says:

    Just reported by a credible source that Hemsky is out for the year

  46. HBomb says:

    Just reported by a credible source that Hemsky is out for the year

    I was going to say “I hope this is a sick joke”, and then, realizing that the next two games are the last two in 2008….it IS a sick joke.

    Don’t give me heart attacks saying stuff like that PJO. Good lord….

  47. Sean says:

    Just reported by a credible source that Hemsky is out for the year

    Just about had a friggin heart attack

    I’d leave Cole and Gagner together and bump up Pouliot. 89 and 26 have been a black hole for offense all year, they just formed some chemistry and I’d rather see that develop.

  48. Doogie2K says:

    go to Calgary with Garon and play it very much like the game in November 2005 when the Oilers went in there with Pronger on the shelf. Consider even a point a huge bonus (that night in 2005, IIRC, they won in a shootout and Pisani got the winner).

    I was there and can vouch for that account. Tight game, which the Oilers led 1-0 for a long stretch before Calgary tied it partway through the third. I was baffled at the time that MacT went with Pisani in the shootout but it paid. That was during Mayor Quimby’s reign, if I remember correctly (and it turns out I do, though I thought Calgary’s goal might have been on the PP).

  49. Doogie2K says:

    Paid off. Edit button, please, Blogger?

  50. boopronger says:

    i guess we should just trade for mike career high 48 points fisher instead.

  51. HBomb says:

    http://tinyurl.com/7of5b2

    Ok, time for a challenge – some parties (i.e. Traktor) seem to insist that the fact that Shawn Horcoff is our first line center is the main reason that we’re in the fight for 8th place yet again.

    Now, Horcoff’s ES point production isn’t what it could/should be, but look at two things:

    - He’s outscoring the opposition at even strength. From watching the games, we know MacT is using him power vs. power against the other teams big guns (I’m betting he, Penner and Pouliot go HTH with the Heatley line tonight), and he’s coming out in the black.

    - The first line is the only trio of guys with Corsi in the black. All the secondary guys are bleeding chances against, including usually-reliable guys like Fernando Pisani and Erik Cole.

    As I can see, the fact the secondary guys are getting killed at evens is a big reason this team isn’t better off (the other major reason is the penalty kill, which is something I firmly believe is more systems-oriented than individual-oriented).

    Is it somehow Shawn Horcoff’s fault that the 2nd and 3rd lines aren’t doing their job? Am I missing something here? All the evidence seems to suggest he’s one of the few guys that is doing his job (and his job is not an easy one by any means).

    On pace for 57 points, eh? I’d wager his second half is better than his first half, mostly because he had a slow first month (like a lot of guys). Even at 65-70 points, I’d say he’s doing his job if the overall results against the other team’s best remain where they’ve been so far.

    It’s other guys that need to pick up their socks for this team to be successful. I think most people get that.

  52. HBomb says:

    I wonder what the point totals would look like if Fisher played with Hemsky and Horcoff played behind Spezza in a checking role. hmmmm..

    Hey look kids! There’s Big Ben! And there’s Parliament!

  53. Black Dog says:

    What we need is someone to start a blog and then we can redirect these debates there.

    We can call it thesongthatneverends.blogspot.com

    Jesus.

    And PJO, well played. Except now i need someone to send paramedics – I’m bleeding out from the wrist slitting.

    Send them to 78 Long Arghhhhhhh…….

  54. Ribs says:

    Come on guys, enough. We get it.

  55. boopronger says:

    I wonder what kind of point totals fisher would get playing with Alfredsson. Hmmmm. Wait, he is playing with Alfredsson and is on pace for 32 points.

  56. HBomb says:

    And PJO, well played. Except now i need someone to send paramedics – I’m bleeding out from the wrist slitting.

    At least you were smart about it. I just pulled a steak knife out of my own abdomen.

    Oh well, look on the bright side….at least they’re not going to risk bringing him back early just so he gets run by Regehr and it ends up being a long-term thing.

    They’re not going to….right? I’ll actually be MORE worried if I see 83 in the lineup tomorrow night than if I don’t.

  57. HBomb says:

    I wonder what kind of point totals fisher would get playing with Alfredsson. Hmmmm. Wait, he is playing with Alfredsson and is on pace for 32 points.

    Anyone have any idea how often they’ve gone with the “Pizza Line” in Ottawa this year, in terms of a percentage of games?

    I like the Sens, but haven’t really been inspired to watch them much this year – they’re not that good. When I watch an eastern team, it’s generally the Bruins.

  58. quain says:

    Let’s all go back to arguing about Penner, at least we mostly agreed that he was fat, overpaid, and not worth three draft picks on top of it. Arguments over how fat and how overpaid are a lot friendlier.

  59. boopronger says:

    Anyone notice how fat penner is?

  60. quain says:

    Penner: fat Oiler or fattest Oiler?

    Get your tickets for the skills competition now!

  61. HBomb says:

    hbomb: Pointing out micro stats is like pointing out that Horcoff threw more punches and landed more punches so even though he got knocked out he should have won the fight.

    So I ask again….if Horcoff’s outscoring with Hemsky and Penner and the other three lines are getting outscored, how does the blame for this team’s lack of success fall on Horcoff and not lines 2-4 for under-performance?

  62. HBomb says:

    New event at the Oilers skills competition: Dustin Penner Sumo Challenge.

    I hear they’re thinking of trading for Kyle Wellwood just to give him some competition.

  63. Doogie2K says:

    So I did some back-of-the-envelope calculations, and it turns out that, other than the two 5v3 goals by Vancouver, the Oilers’ PK has been very good since getting embarrassed by Chicago a couple of weeks ago, and they’ve been doing more of the little things right, at least from what I’ve seen. Small sample size, but everyone loves a good dose of hope, right? (I also borrowed PJO’s joke with credit; hope you don’t mind.)

  64. Ribs says:

    like whispering shots into a missing ear…

  65. HBomb says:

    D2K: Anything that indicates movement in the right direction is a good thing when it comes to the PK.

    I could swear they’re being more aggressive when it comes to pressuring the point-men, and that’s helping matters, IMO.

  66. hunter1909 says:

    Here’s a scary thought:

    The last truly effective 1st line centerman for the Oilers was Petr Nedved.

    For um, 15 games?

    How many seasons ago?

  67. Coach pb9617 says:

    I could swear they’re being more aggressive when it comes to pressuring the point-men, and that’s helping matters, IMO.

    Personnel groupings have changed. 13 and 26 are picking up more time.

  68. Coach pb9617 says:

    So I ask again….if Horcoff’s outscoring with Hemsky and Penner and the other three lines are getting outscored, how does the blame for this team’s lack of success fall on Horcoff and not lines 2-4 for under-performance?

    He’s not outscoring them by enough

  69. DeBakey says:

    From the Senator’s website:

    Defenceman Anton Volchenkov (upper body) skated briefly before practice today but Hartsburg said the big blueliner is “questionable at best” for the Oilers game … Fellow blueliner Filip Kuba (groin) has already been ruled out

  70. Doogie2K says:

    The last truly effective 1st line centerman for the Oilers was Petr Nedved.

    The fu–I mean, the hell?

  71. Shawn says:

    As someone who spent 24 years in Ottawa I am fond of the Senators. I feel like what has happened to them is just the inevitable decline most teams that should have all ready won a Stanley Cup would face. Only Detroit really avoids that. The problem for Ottawa is that they _didn’t_ win that cup.

    Time after time after time after time the Senators didn’t address their glaring needs. Goaltending during the Lalime era and secondary scoring/grit during the Murray/Muckler era. They NEVER properly balanced the team and as a result they never won.

    The team in Hasek’s year should’ve won the Cup. They’d have beat Buffalo, Carolina and Edmonton with relative ease if not for Hasek flaking out. That was a cup team.

    The team after that could’ve won had they not faced the one team they couldn’t handle in Anaheim.

    After that… well teams that successful run into the big problem in an NHL cap world. You build so much good talent that you can’t keep it all… but if you want RETURN for that talent, you have to limit your own chances in the post season that year. Either they go for it and let all these great players walk or they constantly rebuild and turn into the Expos.

    Ottawa went for it and didn’t make the right moves when they did. Now a “should have” team doesn’t have the depth anymore and needs a year or two to restock and reload. They still have the horses to do that. Nobody should be writing a eulogy yet.

    Lowetide: As for trading Spezza, I don’t necessarily disagree. He hasn’t evolved as a player the way people keep expecting him to. Spezza is a softer Marc Savard but paid like a franchise player. He’s very good and unfairly singled out by many hockey geeks, but he is what he is… and what he is probably shouldn’t get 7 million plus a year. That kind of trade would be a good way to start that reload.

    Senators plan for this year?

    -Pump and dump Kuba (getting all those Pizza line points… he’s not that good. Get a first if you can.)
    -Trade pending UFA Antoine Vermette to someone who still thinks he could be a top 6 scorer. Those people exist for some reason… despite the fact that Vermette has NEVER shown an ounce of consistency in that role. This is their last chance to turn him into something more valuable than just another fine third liner.
    -See if anyone would take on the ridiculous contract they gave Fisher for being an excellent third line center. He is, but those shouldn’t be paid like he is.
    -See if you can get something for UFAs Chris Neil and Dean McCammond. Not going to get you much, but at the deadline they should get you something from a contender.
    -See what the market is for Jason Smith’s contract for the rest of this year and next. Not a pure rental, but a playoff warrior and a guy who any contender should want on their third pairing. Again, as many assets as they can get here. He’s replaceable in free agency.
    -Kiss Marty Gerber and his big salary good bye in free agency and base any goaltending persuit on Auld’s play the rest of the season. If he stays above the .910 line on a bad team, give him the job next year with youngster Elliot getting a taste of pro as the back up. If not, they’re going to have to invest some cash in goaltending for once.
    -Consider dealing Kelly based on interest… but I doubt there would be much given his price tag and replaceable role. No huge need to move him.

    Now the big one is the Spezza question. You can keep him and still have a chance of turning the team around with him there. That being said, I think they’re better getting a bunch of young pieces and picks… clearing his salary and trying to build some scoring dpeth instead of being top heavy.

    Stubbornly hanging on to a big 3 helped put Tampa in the hole they are now. If Ottawa can get real value for Spezza… who I like and don’t blame… they will be in a much better position to build around what they do have there.

    The real positive here is that not every team has a player as good as Heatley with a relatively cheap veteran leader as consistently terrific as Alfy. You can gut the roster and build around Heatley, Alfy, Phillips, Volchenkov, Picard, Foligno, Winchester and Auld… and still be the envy of half the teams out there before you even put together the rest of those pieces.

    Those top end players are so hard to come by. Ottawa has a couple of them with two very good defensive D-men under reasonable contracts as well and a couple of nice young pieces. Get more youth, get a whole hell of a lot more cap space and this summer could be very very interesting in the nation’s capital.

    Stand pat and they’re going to end up like Tampa.

  72. Shawn says:

    Why do you guys have this Horcoff discussion in every game day thread? I can’t imagine anything new gets brought up by now.

    FYI… Oilers are 3-0 with me wearing my new jersey. Lets go for 4!

  73. slipper says:

    HBomb: I noticed Cole and Cogliano pressuring the puck carrier versus Nashville and how it was super effective. Then the Moreau unit came out and it was 20 feet of breathing room.

  74. slipper says:

    Traktor said… “I’m done. Later guys.”

    Promises, promises.

  75. Shawn says:

    And also I made a mistake, Vermette isn’t a pending UFA. I’d still trade him though. I think his value is higher than his return in some circles.

  76. HBomb says:

    HBomb: I noticed Cole and Cogliano pressuring the puck carrier versus Nashville and how it was super effective. Then the Moreau unit came out and it was 20 feet of breathing room.

    Somehow this doesn’t surprise me. At all.

    You’ll get long articles with MacT ripping on a lack of professionalism from Nilsson for not going to a “no-strings attached, fully optional” skate, yet not a peep out of him with respect to the lack of leadership shown by Moreau this season, taking dumb penalty after dumb penalty.

    The leadership “core” of this team is often discussed as Moreau and Staios, and I for one thinks the core is rotten and needs to be discarded. This should be Horcoff, Souray and Hemsky’s team….

  77. Doogie2K says:

    They NEVER properly balanced the team and as a result they never won.

    Kevin Lowe, are you reading this thread?

    Why do you guys have this Horcoff discussion in every game day thread? I can’t imagine anything new gets brought up by now.

    Beats me. What I love is how LT keeps deleting posts and they just keep on throwing punches. I decided early on to sit and watch this one, and I’m better off for it.

  78. slipper says:

    Moreau leads the team in multiple categories:

    1st in negative shot differential (-78)

    1st in short-handed GA/60 (12.32)

    1st in penalties taken (15) and penalties taken per hour (2.2)

    He’s playing tough minutes and everything but he makes them even tougher.

  79. Coach pb9617 says:

    -See if anyone would take on the ridiculous contract they gave Fisher for being an excellent third line center. He is, but those shouldn’t be paid like he is.

    Like I said yesterday, he’s committing highway robbery. That’s a candidate for the worst contract in the league.

  80. Shawn says:

    One thing I’d absolutely give Lowe is that when he saw a contender here he did his best to balance it. The moves in 05-06 to bring in Roloson, Spacek, Tarmstrom and Samsonov added the goaltending, depth and skill that a lunch pale roster needed to push it that extra step forward. That was a very balanced team.

    Could’ve used another legit skilled top 6 forward, but who couldn’t? (Detroit)

  81. Shawn says:

    The thing I find with Fisher is that it’s hard to be too rough on him. He is another guy who does what I expect him to do, but who for some unfathomable reason gets paid like he’s going to score 60-70 points.

  82. Dennis says:

    Slipper: 18 looks done. You’ve got a guy making that much money and right now he should only be a 4th liner and occasional PKer. You’ll never read about him being a waste of money, but the guy’s a waste of money. Maybe 34 will prop him up when he returns but I doubt it.

    Shawn: Yes, Lowe had an outstanding stretch of moves there just before the run. One thing I’ll always remember is how he got the early job on Spacek; Jaro was rumoured to be available and I remember Speeds sussing him out early as someone worth the time and effort once he came in then we had a top four we could really lean on.

    Regarding ’06, Roli was having a rough night in G1 in the SCF before being rolled by Ladd. I always wondered how he’d be able to bounce back in G2 and beyond or if that was gonna be the start of a little down stretch.

    Regarding tonight: MacT said he’d see how the game went before he decided whom to play with 27-10 but I don’t think he should overthink things too much. 78 has more of a history of playing tough min than 85 so just go 27-10-78 vs the Sens only line and then let 12-89-26 take on the second toughest. 18-13-85 is the third line and then keep the 4th line as is.

    We’re not playing a team with three lines so you’ll only outsmart yourself if you attempt to spread yourself too thin.

  83. Kris says:

    I remember being told that there was a real player who Ogie Oglethorpe was based on. I was sure it was a myth. Darn you LT for educating me.

    ——

    Everything Shawn says about Ottawa is bang on; they can rebuild quickly by dumping a few of their vets and one of their stars, presumably Spezza, for younger guys, develop those guys, and add via free agency.

    I think the lesson is obvious: if we want Smith, Vermette, or anyone else Shawn mentioned, the price is going to be prospects or young players.

    So I don’t think we’ll be trading with the Sens, because they only want what we don’t want to give up.

    And anyway, trades don’t seem to happen during the season anymore, except for a few rentals at the deadline.

    I think Atlanta and the Isles might be ripe for fleecing, though.

  84. Dennis says:

    Two things:

    1: I believe this is the guy who only survived the gut-shot because his abs were so fucking strong from all the push-ups he did. I'm pretty sure I read that about him in a G&M piece a couple of years ago.

    2. I'm not telling anyone anything they don't already know but the Oilers are actually in decent shape considering their road-tilted sked. If they do their work at home then they'll be in fine shape for a playoff berth. And the next three games Rexalls are against doormats who's early season results have been bought and paid for.

    I still won't get my hopes up until the PK starts to do the things they used to do to be successful but with some nice early chem from 26-89, I'm allllmost ready to not be so negative;)

  85. HBomb says:


    So I don’t think we’ll be trading with the Sens, because they only want what we don’t want to give up.

    I’m not so sure they wouldn’t have some degree of interest in either of Grebeshkov or Nilsson if the Oilers were interested in a Vermette-type.

    Outside of Heatley (who we’re not getting), I’d be interested in either of the pair of Phillips/Volchenkov to partner with Visnovsky and round out the top four on the backend for the next few years.

  86. Coach pb9617 says:

    Anyone remember Horpen’s linemate last year when sky was down?

  87. Coach pb9617 says:

    Was it 12?

  88. Shawn says:

    Ottawa had better not trade Phillips or Volchenkov. Those two have solid contracts and do their job. That can’t be said for a lot of guys on that team.

  89. HBomb says:

    Was it 12?

    I do believe it was. I remember a Saturday night game in Calgary in November where the combo of 27-10-12 keyed a 4-2 win.

    Now I don’t know if that combo works this year, because last year, MacT seemed to be leaning on Stoll’s line for the tough head-to-head matchup. This year, the choice arrangement is a power-vs-power match.

    I say throw Pouliot up there and see what he can do.

  90. Coach pb9617 says:

    Now I don’t know if that combo works this year,

    The reason I ask is that Penner didn’t fall off during that span, so it had to be a play making RW.

    I tend to think of Pouliot and Horcoff as more straight line guys and Nilsson as more of a meandering pleasure skate guy.

    I think 12 fits a bit better on that line.

  91. hunter1909 says:

    I know a 3rd line center wth a wayyy worse contract than fisher…

    Shawn Horcoff

    LOL

  92. Lowetide says:

    Bad news about Hemsky. The guy is playing terrific hockey but he didn’t look right after the hit the other night.

    This might be an opportunity though for someone like Nilsson or Reddox.

    And re: the Horcoff debate earlier and deleted posts, a couple of things. Guys, I don’t like the word “retarded.” I know it has a different, less offensive meaning in today’s world but for old guys like me it’s a horrible word. It really is, and I’m not going to point the finger at anyone because I know the people who’ve used it recently are good people.

    It’s a generation gap thing, I get that. But if you could use another word, I’d really appreciate it.

    As for the other deleted posts, well they were basically just baiting and needed to be deleted.

    Thanks.

  93. Lowetide says:

    Hunter: You need to let it go.

  94. Doogie2K says:

    As for the other deleted posts, well they were basically just baiting and needed to be deleted.

    Well, we do have a few masters of the art here.

    *ducks*

    @Dennis: I think they have been doing more of those things the last few games. I blew off the NSH game (and there was only one PK anyway), but I believe it was the last VAN game, that they were diving for blocks like the good old days, despite the injury to Captain Glass, and I’ve seen quite a few instances lately of enemy PPs spending most of a shift getting chased to their own hashmarks and not being able to set up worth a damn, as well as a lot more SH chances. Of course, I’ve always been one of the optimists around here, but I’m encouraged by the post-CHI efforts.

  95. Coach pb9617 says:

    This wouldn’t be so bad if Fernie were around. I can’t find a damned set of lines that I would like to see tonight. I wish Brule were up, because I think Brule on the left side of Gagner and Cole would be interesting to see and Nilsson could play with Horpen.

    I wonder how Cogliano would look next to Horpen?

    Penner – Horcoff – Cogliano
    Nilsson – Gagner – Cole
    Moreau – Pouliot – Reddox

    Hm.

    Still don’t like it.

  96. Lowetide says:

    Well, if you move Smid up to LW, it all looks good. :-)

  97. Lowetide says:

    Question: If Jason LaBarbara shakes loose in LA (and this could happen), do the Oilers pick him up? I know it would make the crease crowded but JDD can stay in the A for awhile and Garon is basically a dead man walking anyway.

    Thoughts?

  98. Bruce says:

    Going to the game tonight. Am grading the Oilers for Staples’ ongoing project tonight so the 3D perspective should really help. Sucks that Hemsky is out, but will be interesting to see how Oilers cope.

    Not sure that trying to put Jordin Tootoo in a box is the solution to the Hemsky injury. That’s a distraction we don’t need when the objective remains to win the damn game. For another thing the guy is pretty close to the toughest fighter in the league, kind of in the Stan Jonathan mould for those who remember him. Deceptively small but hard as fucking nails and twice as deadly.

    The better solution in my view would be to get Tootoo in a trade, but I expect he’s pretty close to untouchable from a Nashville perspective. Could be wrong about that, but it would surprise me. Nonetheless, wouldn’t bet a plugged nickel that Steve (Head Smashed In) MacIntyre could take him out.

    Moreau at least tried and while Tootoo fairly quickly got the better of him, the captain’s attempt while nursing a bum wrist clearly was appreciated by his teammates.

    For the life of me I can’t figure why the Oilers would risk letting Ales back on the ice. At least they’re taking the safe way out tonight. The onus is on his mates to pick it up and not let these two points get away.

  99. hunter1909 says:

    I kind of think Souray is starting to walk tall vis a vis the team’s chances of getting anywhere this year.

    He’s very tough, playing great, has all the heart and soul you want in any player, and has one of the best shots ever.

    Lowetide: Okay, I’ll stfu with the Horcoff rattle. To be honest I really don’t have an axe to grind with anything to do with the Oilers these days.

    I think they’re going to make the playoffs. And I think they’ll do ok when they are in them.

    Nilsson sure needed his ass kicked though.

  100. Coach pb9617 says:

    LT, what about ‘gay’? To a person of your advanced age, that meant a light-hearted, ole-timey, good time :) Is that one okay?

    Well, if you move Smid up to LW, it all looks good. :-)

    That puts Strudwick and Staios back together. Eeek.

    Question: If Jason LaBarbara shakes loose in LA (and this could happen), do the Oilers pick him up? I know it would make the crease crowded but JDD can stay in the A for awhile and Garon is basically a dead man walking anyway.

    JDD is only in the A for two weeks, from what I can make of the CBA.

    Garon for Labarbera?

  101. PunjabiOil says:

    Guys, I don’t like the word “retarded.” I know it has a different, less offensive meaning in today’s world but for old guys like me it’s a horrible word.

    Good on you Lowetide.

    This is an offensive, demeaning word, that gets used far too often – despite the fact the intention is not there, it’s improper use. Even some of my medical student buddies tend to use it in conversation.

    It really has no place in this modern day of society.

  102. Alice says:

    I don’t think Nilsson gets rewarded with the spot, he’s too fresh from the doghouse for those optics.
    Poo, on the other hand, hasn’t managed to screw up Anything yet this year, so why the hell wouldn’t you put him there, even if 50% of that is just messaging for his teammates? Guy Carboneau, eat your heart out.

  103. Coach pb9617 says:

    Every player that the Caps call up from Hershey to plug in for some injury scores and plays way above their head.

    Uncanny.

    Hawks Wings. Broons Penguins. Ooooh, this should be fun.

  104. quain says:

    I don’t think Nilsson gets rewarded with the spot, he’s too fresh from the doghouse for those optics.

    Dustin Penner?

  105. Alice says:

    Point taken,
    but Penner just went back to his home, he didn’t get a promotion -

  106. Coach pb9617 says:

    Conklin is playing like Grebs shipped the acid to Detroit tonight.

  107. Coach pb9617 says:

    LA better not be dancing with Atlanta. That would be annoying.

  108. Lowetide says:

    Leafs are helping CuJo toward retirement tonight. Jeebus this is sad.

  109. Coach pb9617 says:

    Cleary with a ‘bow to Kane’s head, uncalled of course.

  110. Lowetide says:

    btw, Eberle is 3gp, 1-5-6 so far in the WJ’s, did we have a number in mind for him?

  111. Black Dog says:

    hunter – did you just say you thought they were going to make the playoffs? now bear with me but are you being sarcastic? or just in the holiday spirit?

    I think they will too but I’ve been of that mind all along.

    Yeah Eberle has looked pretty good, also nice to see that he is getting a lot of time on the PK including taking own zone draws.

  112. knighttown says:

    LT:Re Eberle:

    He's been ripped off for at least 3 assists that I can remember…direct shots…rebound…pass…goal.

    No assist, so I'd be comfortable saying 9 points in 3 games.

    Anyway, I don't think there is a line in the sand against 3 teams as bad as Borat-stan, Czech and Germany. These aren't your daddy's Czechs. The real tournament starts tomorrow. If he can produce against the US, Sweden and Russia then I'l consider this a successful tournament. And frankly, I'm not too sure about this Canadian team. I like the Hodgson line (with Eberle), Tavares/Ellis on the power play and the Ennis/Benn line has been buzzing but I don't much like our "first" line at evens.

    Probably not fair to compare to some past teams but I think we fail in four areas, shut-down defense pair, first line, intimidating hitter and 3rd line checking center:

    eg. Parent/Staal >>> Hickey/Tuebert
    eg. Crosby/Bergeron line >>> Tavares/Esposito
    eg. Tootoo/O'Marra >>> Della Rovere
    eg. Brandon Sutter >>> Patrice Cormier

    Just don't think this team measures up against the US and Sweded but hope to be disappointed!

  113. Black Dog says:

    knighttown – hard to say hard to say

    One thing, they sure look small. If the Americans are big, which I believe they are, might be an issue.

  114. Kev says:

    HBomb said:
    “I’ll actually be MORE worried if I see 83 in the lineup tomorrow night than if I don’t”. My feelings as well. Gotta be careful with any trauma to the head.
    And if you missed After Hours with Robyn Reghr, he said (with Simpson sitting to his left) that once during their earlier encounters when he went in to hit Hemsky, Hemmer got his stick up into his neck, sooo… something, something… and that he has a long memory.
    We all know you’re a tough kid Hemmer, so don’t try to come back too early.

  115. knighttown says:

    A lot of trade talk right now but I just don’t see many teams selling this early. Call it a seller’s market. In this economic climate, it is virtually only the Canadian teams that can afford a rebuild. If a team like Columbus starts trading away Malholtra/Peca for prospects again, even thought the GM is likely very much aware it is the right thing for the franchise, we’ll it just won’t happen.

    The 3-point game is very rarely discussed as a PR move but in my opinion it is God-damned near fraudulent. You are behind by 5 points with a month left, you go some combination of 9-5 (with some OT losses) and you still miss the playoffs. The league gets to scream “parity” from the rooftops, the team gets to say “we were 5 games over .500 and 1 win from the playoffs and then anything can happen” and the fans are addicted on the narcotic of hope. Bettman and the Board of Governors close their eyes and talk about how Phoenix has turned the corner and how their fans should be so excited.

    It takes a whole lot of discipline as a GM to be within 6 points and sell at the deadline (like Lowe did a few years back) but 6 points and a half dozen teams to jump over is nearly an impossible feat. I expect every single Western Conference team with the possible exception of St. Louis and LA to hold or add at the deadline and is bidding war for Keith Tkachuk really something that the Oilers want to get into?

  116. Asiaoil says:

    A few game day thoughts:

    Nisson is the best choice to replace Hemmer given his talent and style. He can also backcheck when he wants to. Not making this move means the coach is more concerned about picking Miss Congeniality than Miss Canada – not the first time that would happen this season.

    In MacT’s fireside chat today he says how much he likes Strudwick. Well that man-crush is obvious enough – but then he goes on to say just how well he’s played this season. That’s the f’ing joke of the year and just goes to show how our coaching is sliding into an abyss of absurdity and favoritism. Think the players not in Team-Mac can’t see this shit? How about the weak-kneed EDM reporters for letting that bit of nonsense slide unchallenged?

    LT – Labarberra is OK but nothing to get in a lather about – just a decent bottom end starter. He is however a good example of how AHL SP can indicate future NHL play. Labarberra lit up the AHL in his last couple of years and still he’s only a bottom half starter. JDD’s numbers pale in comparison yet the Oilers think he’s a top-end guy for some reason – where’s the beef?

    Finally – why is Ethan Moreau the captain of this team? Does anyone else have such a mediocre player in this role? No excuse for it given the presence of Horcoff and Souray and it’s about time Hemsky was given a larger role as well.

  117. Asiaoil says:

    knightown – good point about the 3 point nonsense – but maybe the Oilers should play both sides this year – both buying and selling.

    Buying a guy like Malhotra would be good to get both for the rest of this year and next season. A 3rd line center who is fast, reliable and good on the dot is needed.

    Selling guys like Staios and Moreau to teams needing vet depth in the playoffs would also be prudent. We need the capspace and this is the time to get it by off-loading contracts on declining assets.

    So I would both buy and sell at the deadline – but with an eye toward helping next year more rather than making a deep playoff run this season

  118. PDO says:

    830 start now.

    Calgary must just be laughing.

    Why was the start so late anyway?

  119. boopronger says:

    lights not working. We need a new arena! We need a new arena!!

  120. Schitzo says:

    Reddox draws in on the first line. That’s one way.

  121. PunjabiOil says:

    It’s kind of amusing how the Journal reported 1/3 of the team was missing from the optional practice, but the wolves went after Robert Nilsson.

  122. Ribs says:

    What, Reddox is about the same as Hemsky…right?

  123. Schitzo says:

    What, Reddox is about the same as Hemsky…right?

    They both sound like fruitcake Europeans, anyways.

    /Cherry

  124. PunjabiOil says:

    Damn. Canucks got Labarbera for a 7th round pick.

  125. Greg Saint says:

    The light situation is being staged! Staged I tell ya! They wanted it to happen, to get tax dollars for the new rink! Its a conspiracy! JUST LIKE 911!!!

  126. Lord Bob says:

    Jason Labarbara is worth a seventh-round pick, so how on earth can Jeff Deslauriers possibly even be worth a waiver claim?

  127. PDO says:

    Garon makes a save of the year contender…. and then completely over commits to a sharp angle shot. Sigh.

  128. Lowetide says:

    Well damn.

  129. Lowetide says:

    Hey, is the draft even 7 rounds anymore?

  130. PDO says:

    BTW – Oilers have had 3 empty nets and been stick checked on two and hit the side of the net on the other. Not sure what to think of that…

    (Horcoff to Penner, Brodziak rebound, Gagner to Cole at the end of that PP).

    Hey look, it’s a #1 C creating his second 5 bell chance!

  131. Schitzo says:

    And that’s why Horcoff is a checking line centre. Excellent checking!

  132. Lowetide says:

    This team isn’t terribly scary without the cleanup hitter but they had the edge in chances for much of that period imo.

    Reddox would be better if he packed a wallop.

  133. knighttown says:

    (Knighttown to Ladislav Smid)

    “I just put my reputation on the line by telling the masses you were the top shutdown defenseman against mid level opposition in the NHL and are ready to take on the first liners. And then immediately, you let Spezza score.

    (Smid)

    “Yeah, but KT, first liners do sneaky things like pass the puck across the crease to someone standing BEHIND me. Taylor Pyatt never does that. How the heck am I supposed to know there is someone behind me?”

    (KT)

    “I don’t know Ladi, I’m a 33-year old pharmacist who wears a Hemsky jersey in his beer leagues. I haven’t seen my end of the ice since the Nixon administration. Check with Staois, he’s a vet.”

    (LS)

    OK!

    (pauses)

    “Stevie doesn’t know either, but he recommends swimming around on the ice and praying to the Baby Jesus that the puck hits you, so I’ll try that.”

  134. knighttown says:

    Spezza 1:Horcoff 1

  135. Asiaoil says:

    Like I’ve been saying…..

    A guy like Labarberra who has out-performed JDD in both the AHL (by a wide margin) and NHL is worth a 7th rounder. That’s the market and all this BS about JDD being so in demand is just smoke being fed into the mainstream media by Oiler mgmt to justify their usual inept handling of the goalies.

    Their are 2 goalie markets – the elite guys are worth gold and very hard to get – but replacement value for everyone else is almost nothing (eg 7th rounder) because there are so many Aulds, Labarberras and Garons around.

  136. Rod says:

    Canucks with a nice pickup, but anyone else thinking it’s an indicator that Luongo is gone for a while yet?

    And yes, this trade shows the Oil are valuing JDD way too high. Even if he doesn’t clear waivers, is it that much of a loss? Not to me. The real shame would be trading Garon in order to keep JDD.

  137. Lowetide says:

    I think we should call Deslauriers lucky charms. As in “they’re not going to get me lucky charms!”

  138. Ribs says:

    Man, does Garon look horrible. I hope he gets into a groove and the Sens keep playing like they don’t give a crap.

    What’s up with that, by the way? I saw Zach Stortini rumble past a Sens defenseman (Brian Lee I think) to a puck in the corner and the guy just handed him the free pass. It’s Zach freakin Stortini!

  139. knighttown says:

    God damned if I don’t understand the handling of the roster right now. The hockey Jesus has flaws but he’s a damned sight better fit on a scoring line than Reddox. I like and understand keeping Cole/Gags and Poo/Cogs running, but whether it’s Nilsson or Schremp or Brule, someone is a better fit than Reddox who I like just fine as a sub-in for Storts or Strudwick.

    The hit on Hemsky was a few days ago and the swelling was immediate. No excuse not to be prepared…at least in time for tomorrow.

    Waive JDD if need be (as someone mentioned, if LaBarbera is worth a 7th, none of our guys can be worth much more) but this roster inflexibility may cost us points very soon.

  140. Lowetide says:

    Where can Erik Cole score?

  141. Ribs says:

    knighttown…JDD has already been put on waivers.

  142. Lowetide says:

    Ribs: Are you sure? I don’t recall it.

  143. PDO says:

    Erik Cole has to lead the NHL in posts.

    Just has to.

  144. Ribs says:

    wait, is that my bad? does a conditioning assisgnment bypass waivers?

  145. Lowetide says:

    Ribs: Yes. He’s on a conditioning stint and didn’t have to go through waivers (down or back).

  146. Asiaoil says:

    knighttown….teacher would rather give gold stars to polite mediocre students he likes. Others get the ruler across the palms when necessary. Been that way for ages in EDM and won’t change until teacher finds a new job.

  147. Lowetide says:

    Wow. Just wow.

  148. Ribs says:

    LT…Ah, I see. how many times can a guy go down for “conditioning”?

  149. Lowetide says:

    Ribs: I don’t know. I actually didn’t know about the rule that got JDD down thee in the first place (30 days without any action).

    Pouliot down. Damn. Looked clean, hit his head.

  150. PDO says:

    Fuck. Pou sticks in to make a play and looks like he’s done for the night, if not longer.

    Fuck.

  151. Lowetide says:

    Nice play by Horcoff on Phillips there.

  152. quain says:

    You know why Pouliot has a concussion? Chad Moreau.

    Is it just my eyes or has Penner looked absolutely terrible tonight? I see Horcoff buzzing around, and Reddox trying, but Penner looks like he doesn’t want to move his legs.

  153. PDO says:

    That is a horrendous call.

  154. Lowetide says:

    If we had another child I’d name them Lubo. Boy or girl, wouldn’t matter.

  155. Lord Bob says:

    Pouliot wouldn’t be hurt if Craig MacTavish hadn’t lost the room.

    THERE I SAID IT.

  156. PDO says:

    Calling a SO win.

    Cole gets the winner on that one-handed deke.

    …?!

  157. PDO says:

    Good for #85.

    10 is having one hell of a game.

  158. quain says:

    It’s completely obvious that Ales Hemsky carries Horcoff, I mean, the guy can barely play.

  159. quain says:

    Horcoff is keeping us in this game despite having an AHLer and a fat guy on his wings. Against the Pizza line.

    You’d think at some point our depth could show up, right?

  160. Lowetide says:

    Now Reddox is carrying Horcoff. Oilers should have kept Comrie and sent Horcoff away.

  161. PDO says:

    Horcoff is making Reddox as good as Hemsky makes Horcoff look!

  162. Lord Bob says:

    Dustin Penner is going to celebrate the achievement by taking Reddox out for pizza.

    Wait, I read that wrong. It says “taking Reddox out as a pizza”.

  163. knighttown says:

    …and now Pouliot is out and we have zero callups on the way for a BTB in Calgary. Since Gagner/Cole have been awful thus far I’ll assume all “chemistry” goes out the window and we’ll see something like:

    Horc-Penner-Cole (pwp)
    Cogs-Gagner-Nilsson
    Brodziak-Moreau-Reddox
    Stortini-Strudwick-Deslauriers

    I was going to do a post the other day, but the gist was that the Edmonton Oilers have been among the Top 3 healthiest teams in the NHL this year. I could find no official “man games lost stat” but by my count, and not counting frige cuys like MacIntyre:

    1. NYR-5
    2. Phx-10
    3. Nas-10 (if you don’t count Sullivan)
    4. Edm-20 (pisani)
    5. Det-25 (Holmstrom)
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    27. Dallas-95 (Lehtinen, Zubov, Morrow)
    28. St. Louis-110 (E. Johnson, MacDonald, Kariya)
    29. Carolina-120 (Justin Williams)
    30. NYI- 125 (DiPietro/Sillinger)

    The disadvantage of carrying three goalies is that you have 1 guy in the PB when everyone is healthy. They have a swingman in Strudwick and thought they could get away with this, and they did. But it looks like it is time to pay the piper. Roster inflexibility may very well cost us 4 points this week. I hope JDD is worth it.

  164. Lowetide says:

    If that was the Oilers “sag” period then they should win this thing.

    As an aside, I’ve followed Ottawa as one of my top 4 teams (EDM, BOS, OTT, SJS) for many years now and there’s about 5 guys who don’t look familiar.

    Is that Brendan Bell guy the former Leaf prospect?

    Poor Poo. He’s got the luck of Eeyore.

  165. Kris says:

    I know it’s late but anybody got a link?

  166. slipper says:

    Imagine how much better the Oil would look matching Spezza-Penner-Reddox versus Horcoff-Heatley-Alfie.

    Make the trade Lowbellini!!!

  167. goldenchild says:

    good lord does Cole get some primo chances.
    Why every Oilerfan isn’t a Horecoff fan makes no sense.
    Hope Poo is ok.
    I don’t know if its the scotch I’ve been sipping but this game has been much better than I thought it would be

  168. Asiaoil says:

    Obviously motivation is a big part of being a decent player – but you know at some point you need to question whether the coach is succeeding at this part of his job as well. MacT seems to only click with players who really don’t need much help in this area (like Horcoff) while struggling to find ways of connecting with guys who have trouble (like Penner). His toolkit for motivating the difficult cases is awfully limited and seems to relies on negative reinforcement more and more these days which is very counter-productive long term.

  169. Lowetide says:

    Asia: I hear you and honestly don’t understand the “throwing under bus” routine this season. It’s often the sign of a guy who has run out of ways to motivate but it’s also quite often a precursor to a change in coach.

    In this instance it’s probably both.

  170. boopronger says:

    penner is so bad in the defensive zone. Always seems to give the puck away.

  171. PunjabiOil says:

    Any update on Pouliot?

  172. slipper says:

    Outside of chicks, I can’t think of many external motivators to make a guy eat well and exercise.

    Millionaire pro-athletes can look like Mike Ricci and score ladies, so…

  173. knighttown says:

    Great shift by Nilsson at the end there. wonderful slap pass to Gilbert and a no-looker to Cole right after. Only 1 other Oiler makes those passes and he’s suffering from Tootoo induced epistaxis at the moment.

  174. boopronger says:

    nhl.com has penner with 3 giveaways so far so my eyes werent lying to me.

  175. Lowetide says:

    Nice pass by Penner there, though.

  176. Ribs says:

    I think MacT picks his targets pretty well when he throws them under the speed wagon. We’ve seen a sterner, meaner MacT this year and I personally think it’s a good thing.

    He’s going to push the players to play their best and force them to play the game at a professional level every night. He thinks he has the tools to win and he’s going to push his tools hard to get the job done.

    I sense a confidence in the coach that I haven’t seen before this season and it could end up being the thing that gets him fired or the thing that gets him a cup. We’ll see soon enough, I suppose.

  177. boopronger says:

    Ya LT, as bad as he seems to be in the other zones, Penner is really effective in the offensive zone IMO. Good puck support, tough to get him off the puck and good passing.

  178. PDO says:

    Outside of chicks, I can’t think of many external motivators to make a guy eat well and exercise.

    So Nilsson is gay? IT ALL MAKES SENSE!

  179. Lowetide says:

    Well there’s certainly a sense of urgency; how a team can miss the playoffs as often as this one with the same management team is beyond me.

  180. Lowetide says:

    Mild concussion for Poo. He’s out for tonight and (probably) tomorrow.

    Callup? I bet Schremp but hope for Brule.

  181. boopronger says:

    Garon seems to be handling the puck real poorly

  182. Lowetide says:

    I hate to say it but suspect Garon is ripe for a softie.

  183. Lowetide says:

    Brodziak moved up a line which probably means the end of Strudwick-Stortini for the evening.

  184. oilerdago says:

    Hope you are wrong LT, but I’ve got the same feeling about this game. We’re letting the Sens hang around and that’s the worst thing you can do to a team in a slump.

  185. Lowetide says:

    Plus MacT has to shorten the bench which means that his top 9F are going to face the Ottawa vaunt. And there are too many kids to hide.

  186. slipper says:

    For some reason the giant cleft in that Pizza 73 guy’s nose drives me insane.

  187. boopronger says:

    Conklin with the shutout tonight ;)

  188. Lowetide says:

    Damn Sam anyway.

  189. slipper says:

    Shit! Here we go.

    BIG penalty kill.

  190. Lowetide says:

    Well at least it wasn’t a softie.

  191. Unleaded says:

    Damn.

  192. slipper says:

    Brian Lee?

    Wasn’t he the third member of Demolition?

  193. PDO says:

    Wasn’t a softie… but the call sure was.

    What the FUCK WAS MOREAU DOING??????

  194. Lowetide says:

    PDO: They’ll even it up before the game ends. But the Oilers PP hasn’t looked good tonight, which is of course understandable with 83 out.

    It’s funny, they’re close to being on a 4 game W streak and yet this time tomorrow night there’s every chance they’ll have 2L’s in a row.

    Tough damn league.

  195. slipper says:

    Has anyone mentioned that Moreau has been the suck on the PK this season?

  196. oilerdago says:

    Don’t let this one slip away. Please.

  197. PDO says:

    HOW DO YOU NOT CALL THAT AFTER THE SOURAY AND STORTINI CALLS!

    This is pathetic.

  198. boopronger says:

    Im starting to get tired of moreau passing the puck into peoples skates. geez.

  199. slipper says:

    That was holding, hooking, too many men, and being a douchebag all in one fluid motion by Ruutu.

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