Stars at Oilers, G24/08-09

This is Ted Harris marking (and scarring) his man, maybe 1971. The St. Louis player appears to be wearing #11, meaning that the actual victim in the photo is Gary Sabourin. Harris played in Minnesota 1970-73 and Sabourin wore #11 for the Blues the entire time.

One of the books I write after my first two best sellers (entitled “Oakland Seals at the Expansion Draft” and “Bill White Drifts A-Shore”) will be about the 1971 Minnesota North Stars. It’s basically the story of an expansion team that kept acquiring veterans from the Habs in exchange for draft picks until one day the two teams meet in the playoffs.

And the North Stars almost win the damn thing. Seriously. You could look it up. Jude Drouin, Danny Grant, Ted Harris, Gump Worsley and Bobby Rousseau all played well enough to push the eventual Cup champions to the brink of elimination.

In G6, late in the game and down by one goal, North Star center Ted Hampson breaks in on the defense, zips behind them and rips the puck past Ken Dryden as the game ends. Goal judge hits the light but it won’t go on. Hampson tied game 6 a split second after the end of regulation. Only the Habs get those breaks.

I’ve resisted the urge to begin talking about the 2009 Entry Draft because with the Oilers in lottery position it just makes me cranky to think about it. However, as we move along in the 2008-09 season the possibility exists that the Edmonton Oilers will:

  • miss the playoffs
  • retain the coaching staff
  • retain the management group (with Tambellini inert)
  • get another lottery pick

All the while spending near the cap. Amazing. Rob Schremp draws into the lineup tonight. It reminds me of the time the Bay City Rollers appeared live on the Howard Cosell show. It isn’t the Beatles and it isn’t Ed Sullivan but it is a spectacle.

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339 Responses to "Stars at Oilers, G24/08-09"

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  1. Black Dog says:

    Well, not even the biggest “MacT has the season to work this out” folks who said so on the record last week – Barnes, Duhatschek – said that he would last if the Oilers did not make the playoffs.

    If they do not then he will be gone.

    Where this team will go from there though? My Jesus, will we ever have a dull summer where the club basks in a decent season with a playoff round victory or two as they look forward to taking the next step?

    I guess not.

  2. namflashback says:

    BDHS,

    I fear we have become the Maple Leafs, Oildrop version.

  3. Lord Bob says:

    So, how many points for Captain America tonight, d’ya think?

    I don’t want to commit myself to a number, but suffice to say that I think Darryl Sittler and Jim Harrison will be looking for new claims to fame.

  4. Phil says:

    Well, news out of Carolina that Peter Laviolette is out, Paul Maurice back in. Fresh available meat on the coaching market. I’ll go ahead and start the rumour that the coach that beat us in the SCF is on his way to Edmonton.

  5. mc79hockey says:

    This thread really should have referred to this as a sloppy seconds game.

  6. Matt N says:

    Lost in the whole Avery vs. Phaneuf thing is that Avery also dated Stoll’s wife.

    Edit:

    I am ashamed that I know that

  7. namflashback says:

    mc,

    It’s humourous to watch the indignant commentary of the sports newscasters then to look at the sportsnet website. There is a little section with a picture of Elisha Cuthbert captioned:

    “tired of the sloppy
    weather” take a look at our gallery of serial athlete daters.

  8. mc79hockey says:

    I just love the contrast between the NFL and the NHL at the moment. Everyone’s up in arms about Avery. Meanwhile Giants WR Plaxico Burress has been put on the injured list after he accidentally shot himself in the leg with an illegal weapon that he was storing in the waistband of his pants. His teammate alleged disposed of the weapon in New Jersey, crossing state lines, which is problematic. Nobody really seems to be too troubled about this.

  9. Ribs says:

    Meanwhile, Scott Howson got some good news.

  10. relic says:

    nam: they must have changed it already cause the sloppy weather part is gone.

    the dark side of hockey culture: tacit approval of sexism and other anti-social behaviors.

  11. doritogrande says:

    Ribs: saw that yesterday. I think the best news for Howson is that Raffi-one-goal Torres is back on IR.

    I can’t with any honesty believe that MacT is bulletproof for the duration of the season. But then again we didn’t fire him after Spring07 so what do I know. Problem is he’s tinkering with the lines on a whole new level of crazy. He’s gonna damage some of these players (Smid, Gagner) beyond repair. We’re going to have our very own Gilbert Brule experiment.

    Not many of you saw this season for what it is. Another rebuild year. Problem was that the GM diad also wants to win now. Horcoff would have been very, very attractive on the open market at the deadline. Don’t get me wrong I’m glad he’s in the fold long-term, but it’s not the ideal situation for the team in a rebuild year. If Cole ever gets it going we’ll have 2, maybe 3 tradable assets at the deadline and we should unload all of them.

    LT won’t talk about the possibility of an 09 lottery pick, but I’m all for it. It’s been a long time since this team’s had anything close to a Hedman or Tavares to get excited about. Even the second top-tier of talent looks good. The likes of Adam Foot….er Jared Cowan and the younger, scoringer brother of the Human Eraser. The Schroeder kid is apparently lighting up the NCAA as well. This draft may be as loaded in the top-5 as the 08 version with one notable exception. Anyone Seen Stamkos?

  12. knighttown says:

    @ MC

    "I just love the contrast between the NFL and the NHL at the moment. Everyone's up in arms about Avery. Meanwhile Giants WR Plaxico Burress has been put on the injured list after he accidentally shot himself in the leg with an illegal weapon that he was storing in the waistband of his pants. His teammate alleged disposed of the weapon in New Jersey, crossing state lines, which is problematic. Nobody really seems to be too troubled about this."

    I'm not sure which side of the argument you are supporting (NHL to tough or NFL to soft) but I'm am so glad that I support a sport whose off ice incidents are remarkably few considering the numbers and the demographic that we are dealing with. 1000 young male millionaires running around and generally the worst you hear about is the odd D&D offense. Which is not trivial, but is a plague across most cross sections of society.

    The behaviour of NFL and NBA players disgusts me. How the fuck does Pacman Jones get reinstated again? I went through a time when the NFL was my favorite sport (during the Niners last run when the Oilers sucked) but I haven't watched a full non-Super Bowl game in years and idiots like Buress are one of the reasons.

    To borrow an LT comment, the fact that the NFL has unconditional support in the US while hockey struggles to make a ripple says more about you (NFL fan/American?) than it does about me (hockey fan/Canadian).

  13. knighttown says:

    @ Dorito

    “Not many of you saw this season for what it is. Another rebuild year”

    Perhaps we were blinded by the 56 million dollars DK spent. You cannot spend to the cap and say you are rebuilding. You just can’t.

  14. Black Dog says:

    dg – I figured this team for sixth seed, same as LT.

    They have holes but they have mailed in far too many games. They should be in the mix.

  15. Henry says:

    With respect, you won’t convince me that the Oilers could be a lottery team (or the TML) until February. This team is 3.5 games out of first (and tied for worst). They have also played 39% of their road schedule and just 17% of the home schedule. With all the parity in the league, small advantages like home ice mean a lot and it gets magnified if a team is playing long stretches out of a suitcase.

    This team has its best veterans (Hemsky, Souray and Horcoff) playing very well. It’s why they got this far more or less intact. The team’s most glaring weaknesses are on the PK, faceoffs and the collective insane love of getting drop passes 10 feet inside the blue line picked off. MacT is a specialist in coaching two of those three things. If he can’t do it, who can? Torotella? Home ice and a short time to drill in those fundamentals should turn this around. Not time for despair yet, but they can’t take Christmastime off this year.

  16. doritogrande says:

    I had them pegged at 4th in the divsion, fighting for 8th spot overall, but don’t think that’s a possibility now.

    Like you said, the team is mailing it in. But MacT’s tried pretty much every line combination now to get these guys going, and so far only two players are performing at or exceeding levels we thought they were capable of. There’s no team chemistry anymore. Part of that has to be placed at the feet of the players, but it also has to fall on the coach for his stubborness to put players in a position to succeed.

    Gagner as our top-line C?
    Pisani as our 3line C?
    Penner in a checking role?
    Smid as a fucking winger?

    You cannot expect to win with decisions like these. And now we’re forcing MacT to play with krytonite and you think we’ll come out on top? Not likely. I honestly thought that MacT was done after the second Detroit game. Two other coaches have already been fired this year for reasons I don’t see to be as dire as the Oilers current predicament. Makes one wonder who the real GM is here.

  17. doritogrande says:

    Henry:

    Yeah, but have you SEEN our home record? Almost makes me wish we didn’t play a damn home game this year. We might be a playoff team then.

  18. Julian says:

    Uh, on the plus side, Nash and Eberle made the WJC tryout camp….

  19. Garnet says:

    Our home-road imbalance doesn’t get mentioned enough, though it’s well known to everybody. It colours not only our results in the past but the rest of the season, too. After all, it would only be normal if the Oilers gradually rose up the standings from here; if we won all our remaining (34) home games and lost all the away games, we’d move up the charts and finish with 90 points, probably just enough to miss the playoffs. (L.A., on the other hand, has had 14 home games and only eight on the road, so they’ll have a small anchor on them going forward.)

  20. Henry says:

    I agree, the home record is terrible. Seven games is a small sample size though. They dropped into Edmonton for 4 games as part of the November road trip and lost them all. It should turn around when they get a better routine.

  21. Unleaded says:

    As long as the team picks a direction and goes with it, I don’t relly care what happens. Either go for the lottery or tear it up and make a run.

    Who knows? Maybe part of the reason that MacT is still around with the questionable assistants he has is simply to see if the coaching can reduce a respectable roster to a lottery pick in this new NHL. Its an interesting thought. Keep MacT for the season knowing that results are suffering as a result, hope the players aren’t damaged by it, get in the lottery, and have a great reason to clean house next offseason.

    I’ve heard Katz is a smart guy. Is he this smart?

  22. doritogrande says:

    Julian:

    Where are you getting this from? TSN.ca’s announcing live at 11:15 CST.

  23. doritogrande says:

    Off-topic:

    RIP Ted Rogers.

  24. Traktor says:

    “As long as the team picks a direction and goes with it, I don’t relly care what happens. Either go for the lottery or tear it up and make a run”

    “I believe teams should either be, ascending rapidly or descending rapidly” – Burkie

    This org seems more content with battling out 8th spot every year.

  25. Julian says:

    It was released to Hockey Canada insiders.

    http://www.hockeycanada.ca/index.php/ci_id/58695/la_id/1.htm

  26. CM says:

    “HURRICANES FIRE LAVIOLETTE”

    He’s missed the playoff in 3 of the last 4 seasons and has 1 more playoff win than MacT.

  27. doritogrande says:

    Man. No Plante, no Cornet. Kinda disappointed in that. Pretty sure Cornet’s outproducing Cormier.

  28. Schitzo says:

    Looks like the only other Oilers prospect will by Kyntar. What are the chances of any of the Slovakia games making it on TV?

  29. doritogrande says:

    Schitzo:

    I thought Hartikainen was supposed to be a lock for Team Finland.

  30. Showerhead says:

    “The veteran, a sagacious fellow seldom at a loss for words, let out a sigh that was accompanied by a slight shake of his head.

    ‘It’s been a topic of ours here for a long time,’ Shawn Horcoff eventually said when the between game-day talk turned to the Edmonton Oilers and their troubling starts.”

    Emphasis mine, but that’s surely an interesting way to start an article. Anyone else feel like conspiracies today?

  31. bookie says:

    While I agree that there is reason for Doom and Gloom, I temper it with the fact that if Horpensky played like they did the last 2 games, that this team might be in first place in their division. Nevermind the play of the other players. I am fully convinced that the Line-blender kept the team playing crappy for a longer period than they would have. Another coach may have improved upon this, but perhaps he would have blown something else…

    I would love to see a study of all of the coach firings and the outcomes following. Are there many exaples of sub500 teams who fire their coach and then become a much better team for an extended period of time? If not, we may have to assume that coaching carries limited influence as a variable (as all coaches are of high quality)? Anyway, maybe one of you number cruchers can get on that. THere are a lot of cases over the last decade to explore.

    Anyway, I agree with those that say we will have a better idea by Feb.

    Is MacT safe? If we winlosewinlose the rest of the season – yes. If we lose 5-6 in a row at any point – he is gone.

  32. bookie says:

    One more comment.

    Win or Lose, I think that this home and home will awaken the Oilers (win would be better). It already has to some extent.

  33. namflashback says:

    bookie,

    sadly, we were also the tonic for Dallas (or suspending Avery was the tonic) getting out of their funk. They played a perfect road game against Calgary last night and Turco looked like Turco.

  34. mjsh says:

    At the beginning of the season, most people said if the Oilers get to the end of the big road trips at .500 that they would do well. We are almost there. I travelled every day for 6 weeks in an old job I had and was totally worn out at the end of the six weeks and I did not play hockey every second week doing it. The home record is realistic because they were basically short stops on the way to another city.

    It appears to me that there is more life in the team now and I still think they will do well this season. I still think it will be a race with Minny and Calgary for first in the division.

  35. mjsh says:

    whoops, where is that edit button. It should have read, not played hockey every second night doing it.

  36. Schitzo says:

    Dorito – totally forgot about him. Some finns on HF figure he’s got a good shot, so that’s nice.

  37. Kyle says:

    “I believe teams should either be, ascending rapidly or descending rapidly” – Burkie

    If Jesus said it, it must be true.

  38. raventalon40 says:

    I don’t want to commit myself to a number, but suffice to say that I think Darryl Sittler and Jim Harrison will be looking for new claims to fame.

    They’re already taking down the display at the Hockey Hall of Fame as we speak…

    It’s humourous to watch the indignant commentary of the sports newscasters then to look at the sportsnet website

    [...]

    I just love the contrast between the NFL and the NHL at the moment. Everyone’s up in arms about Avery. Meanwhile Giants WR Plaxico Burress has been put on the injured list after he accidentally shot himself in the leg with an illegal weapon that he was storing in the waistband of his pants. His teammate alleged disposed of the weapon in New Jersey, crossing state lines, which is problematic. Nobody really seems to be too troubled about this.

    [...]

    the dark side of hockey culture: tacit approval of sexism and other anti-social behaviors.

    They only express indignation because they feel they have to. How many of these guys would turn around and then proudly say “I have a job because the NHL athletes give me things to quote before and after games” in the context of this Sean Avery isolated event?

    The truth is, the players’ private lives are their own damn business and the media chose to publish stuff about it and the subsequent comments by Avery about the whole business(who you should censor anyway, if they really cared).

  39. slipper says:

    No Zubov, Morrow, Lehtinen, Ott or Avery. Stars playing back-to-back on the road. Edmonton with three days rest. Oilers should be 3-2 favourites for this one.

  40. Dennis says:

    I’ve got to see the Oilers be consistent before I believe in them. I parroted the “give them a break because they’re playing a lot of games on the road early” idea but now the bills are coming due with a heavy home slate so let’s see what they’ve got.

    So here’s what I see right now:

    - the PK’s a fucking nightmare and our best non-faceoff taking forward is on the IR. So how will this unit improve with the current roster?

    - we’re getting nothing out of 26 or 89 offensively

    - the 24-43 tandem is a nightmare that MacT won’t break up

    - we’re still fucking around wasting starts on JDD and we’re flat out wasting Garon in general

    - we got outchanced by bad/young teams like the Leaves and Kings.

    So outside of all those elements I’m all fucking kinds of optimistic.

    Until proven otherwise the Oilers ARE the soft spot on the sked and not the other way around.

  41. bookie says:

    Garon to start tonight…unless a flu bug hits I guess.

    wonder how he will be after the beating that his confidence must have taken.

  42. Dennis says:

    Roli and JDD must be really at death’s door if the Oilers are letting Garon take the hill.

    It’s been absolutely mind-blowing to see the way the Oilers have used Garon this year.

    I doubt we’ll ever get an explanation and I doubt anyone could ever come up with a good one. It looks like they took a guy with a SV PCT in the .910′s on a super-young team and decided that wasn’t good enough and needed to be re-worked.

    Is that how everyone else sees it?

    MacT’s weak spot – or the org’s for that matter – has always been netminding, or at least since Salo stunk in ’03 or considering they way they’ve drafted netminders, but this one takes the cake.

    It’s like benching your 5th hitter because his slg pct is only in the .500 range and there are only about 5-7 guys who are doing it better but you punish him nonetheless.

  43. Kris says:

    Dennis et al:

    The idea that it’s okay to be 500 on the road is wrong. Stats guys, give me a hand here:

    Of the 16 teams that made the playoffs in 07/08, only Colorado had a road record under 500: 1 game under. And only 4 other playoff teams had road records near 500; i.e. only 4 teams were 2 games or less over 500 on the road.

    (And be forewarned, Carolina was one game under 500 on the road and 11 games over 500 at home. Yet they didn’t make the playoffs!)

    Even worse, in 06/07 only 2 teams with road records near or under 500 made the playoffs; Calgary was 7 games under and Minny was right at 500. Atlanta was the next closest at 4 games over 500 on the road.

    However, 05/06 saw about half the teams with road records less than 3 games over 500 make the playoffs. (Let’s hope this year is the same.)

    Nonetheless, in the three post-lockout seasons only 14 teams (5+2+7) teams with below or near 500 road records made the playoffs. Given that 16 teams make the playoffs a year, that yields 48 playoff spots. Thus, the odds of a team with a roughly 500 road record making the playoffs is about 14/48 or slightly less than 1/3

    It’s not acceptable for a cap team to have a 1/3 chance of making the playoffs. Not at all.

  44. Kris says:

    Oops, didn’t mean to give the impression I was disagreeing with Dennis. Rather, I was commenting on what he called the “give them a break because they’re playing a lot of games on the road early idea.”

  45. Steve says:

    …our best non-faceoff taking forward is on the IR.

    Hemsky’s hurt?

  46. Unleaded says:

    Dennis Said:

    "the PK's a fucking nightmare and our best non-faceoff taking forward is on the IR."

    This unit will improve with more practice. 10 & 18 may not get much better, but 13, 51, and whoever else they throw out there will improve.

    "we're getting nothing out of 26 or 89 offensively"

    26 has been successful at drawing penalties, which have been helping give out top line minutes on the PP. I know he's not hitting the twine, but he is contributing. 89 is another story, and I think that considering how 88 has been setting people up, the two of them may solve each others problems.

    "the 24-43 tandem is a nightmare that MacT won't break up"

    They are part of the problem on the PK. The top 4 on this team is okay, but those two make a Smid – Peckam pairing look like a dream. You know it can't be worse, numbers-wise.

    "we're still fucking around wasting starts on JDD and we're flat out wasting Garon in general"
    "MacT's weak spot – or the org's for that matter – has always been netminding, or at least since Salo stunk in '03 or considering they way they've drafted netminders, but this one takes the cake."

    If that was a Roli Showcase, you'd have to think they'd have traded him by now. So my only thought is that Peeters is the problem. Not good news. DOes anyone know when he joined the org? Is his hiring related to the teams inability to have consistent netminding since Tomi?

    Oh, and for the record, I agree with you Dennis – managing the net this year has been bad. Not letting Garon near his other coach has certainly not helped his performance since the end of the first 3 games. Considering his play last year, you'd figure they'd let him do what worked for him.

    "we got outchanced by bad/young teams like the Leaves and Kings"

    And we killed the blues. The team is inconsistent. We know that.

    "Until proven otherwise the Oilers ARE the soft spot on the sked and not the other way around."

    I sure hope other teams think so. Take the Oilers lightly. It can only help this team right now. Either they get underestimated, or they lose badly and hopefully lights a fire under some of them. Either way, its win-win.

    Worst case senario they don't stop losing and we see a massive overhaul in the coaching staff. Once again, another positive from my chair.

  47. Alice says:

    Kris,
    You need to know how many in this .500 range Missed the playoffs, compared to the 14 that did make the playoffs. How many others with higher averages made the playoffs is irrelevant.
    But your point being .500 is no bell-ringer high-water mark for road performance, yep.

  48. bookie says:

    Did anyone see Don Cherry’s comments regarding Avery?

    “It’s so sad and it’s really a mark against hockey,” Cherry said of Avery’s outburst. “We are not like that. Hockey players are not into the drugs, we’ve had over 3,000 tests in three years, only one’s been caught, we don’t shoot one another, we don’t take drugs, we don’t stab one another.

    “And for him to come out like that, it’s a sad, sad situation.”

    What they hell is he talking about? Its like random words just flow out of his mouth.

  49. Jonathan says:

    The Oilers road record is good for sixth in the Western Conference, which, coincidentally, is right in the ballpark of where most of us pegged this team.

    I really don't see how people figure they're underachieving on the road, unless they're putting process>results, which is one way to look at it.

    The home record is the problem, and they've got a nice soft schedule to turn that around. If they don't, I sincerely hope that MacTavish gets canned.

  50. IceDragoon says:

    Good day.

    I don’t know what it is, Lain, but you sure can start hyperventilating at the strangest times.
    ;-D

    The team game is getting stronger, with much better support and trust. Confidence is just around the corner. – keep rattlin’ dem bones ;-D

    The coach is saying things that I see, and have said recently. So, once thru the next three games which will be exhausting (tonight could be scarier than SJ – the Stars have had the weight/mouth of Avery lifted off their shoulders), I expect to see more consistency and growth.

    Bat**** looks to have flipped a few switches. MacTavish’s teams have always been pretty smart, but this team is his most intelligent. An interesting thing about smart buggers… they tend to be stubborn… go figure.

    We still need the noted vets to do anything in the playoffs, but even without them being added, I think we’ll make it. After Marty left and we didn’t replace him, I thought we’d see exciting hockey, but… Well, there were many scenarios, and I wasn’t too hopeful in most of them. Adding a couple of vets for a stretch run and just making it, topped the list.
    Next year, however… :-)

    Of course, goalie is still a ? – and, three goalies is poison. perhaps not Avery poison, but potentially deadly just the same. We can only speculate with our biases on what’s going on with Garon, Dennis. Much more information is needed to get a real handle on this.

    I don’t think Staios is done. He just tends to play around the level of his partner… always has. To get the best out of him put competence beside him.

    Kris: I think you need a lot more context before you can blow off the Oilers early schedule so easily.

    L8r
    Louise

  51. Doogie2K says:

    Speaking of the North Stars taking vets from the Habs, how about the ’99 Cup champs? Guy Carbonneau, Mike Keane, and Brian Skrudland were all vets of ’86, with the former two also winning in ’93, while the GM, Bob Gainey, was part of the ’70s dynasty, and captained the ’86 team.

  52. Jonathan says:

    More on the Oilers’ road record this season – since the lockout, it would have ranked 8th, 6th and 4th in the Western Conference.

    .500 on the road is a playoff record. Some teams get around it with amazingly strong/abysmally weak home play, but a team that is .500 on the road is doing OK.

  53. LMHF#1 says:

    Schremp scores, Garon plays great, we have a big home effort from the big players.

    BTW (and I hope you don’t mind LT) I blog now: http://lmhfs.blogspot.com/

  54. Doogie2K says:

    What they hell is he talking about? Its like random words just flow out of his mouth.

    The NFL, NBA, and MLB, and their variable collections of users, felons, and thugs.

    The home record is the problem

    But as has been pointed out previously, most of those home games have been one-game stops on an extended road trip. Hard to read much from it, really.

    Oh, and I loved watching Marty Sakic shoot one right into Carey Price’s pads on the three-on-two. Good ol’ Marty. He was great on the PK, though, harrassing Saku Koivu into hocking up a SH rush.

  55. Bruce says:

    But your point being .500 is no bell-ringer high-water mark for road performance, yep.

    For starters, .500 ain’t .500 anymore. The “new .500″ is somewhere around .555. And as a road record it looks something like this: 20-15-6.

    Thanks again, Gary.

  56. Conan says:

    Someone call Traktor’s relatives. Obviously someone has taken him prisoner, and is holed up inside his home writing comments on the Lowetide site.

    That’s the only explanation for the appearance of four non-incendiary (dare I say intelligent?) comments in a row from the Traktor handle.

  57. Coach pb9617 says:

    This unit will improve with more practice. 10 & 18 may not get much better, but 13, 51, and whoever else they throw out there will improve.

    You know, or 89 or 27

  58. slipper says:

    Bruce, is that a photo of the meteor?

    Is that where you’ve been- rock hunting?

  59. Dennis says:

    Can someone cross-reference team’s PK standings along with their end of the year finish?

    Just how well can the Oilers expect to do with a PK unit this bad?

    Louise: you know I respect you but it’s been “next year” now for three of the last four seasons and I’m tiring of it.

    An interesting note is how the Oilers seemingly believe significant time has passed to the point where they can shelve one of the pieces of Pronger bounty.

  60. raventalon40 says:

    I don’t think Staios is done. He just tends to play around the level of his partner… always has. To get the best out of him put competence beside him.

    Then they better play Smid with Staios because from what I’ve seen so far his play is more dependable than Strudwicks. I am of the opinion that they both stink and that trading Staios is the best option to relieve the cap pressure and get a higher return.

  61. Bruce says:

    Speaking of the North Stars taking vets from the Habs, how about the ’99 Cup champs? Guy Carbonneau, Mike Keane, and Brian Skrudland were all vets of ’86, with the former two also winning in ’93, while the GM, Bob Gainey, was part of the ’70s dynasty, and captained the ’86 team.

    Doogie: Don’t forget about Craig Ludwig, who won the Cup in ’86 in Montreal, and again 13 years later in Dallas in ’99 at the very end of his career. Lest we forget, Ludwig was the guy who wore a pair of goalie pads under his socks, the “legality” of which proved that Bob Gainey had learned a thing or two from Sam Pollock.

    Not one of Keane, Carbonneau, Skrudland or Ludwig finished among the top 10 Dallas scorers that season, with Keane scraping into 10th spot on the playoff list. Yet that team wouldn’t have come within a country mile of the Cup without them.

    BTW, Doogie, good catch on Frankie Brimsek the other day. I’ve been concentrating on things other than hockey for the past little while, but I did read through the weekend game day threads, and that was a beauty on best American. I’m with Slipper, when considering full careers across different positions in such a question, plus/minus — flawed as it may be — may be the best comparable we got. After a decade or two, the argument “but he always played on good teams!” can be rebutted with “so what’s your point?”

    In fact, I had already looked at this very stat, regular season and playoffs, for the following guys before I had worked my way down to Slipper’s comment. Since we’re seeing Modano again tonight, better late tthan never I suppose:

    Chelios +351, +48 = +399
    Roenick +155, +22 = +177
    Mullen +163, +9 = +172
    Modano +136, -1 = +135
    Hull +23, +13 = +36
    Leetch +25, +2 = +27
    Lafontaine -4, -14 = -18

    ….

    Not that I think he belongs in the discussion, but somebody did bring up the name of Keith Tkadouche, whose +40 regular season mark is a false positive that places his career -14 in the postseason in its proper perspective. Tkachoke is one of the worst playoff performers ever, and simply does not belong in the discussion for that reason.

    I have a nagging feeling that I’m forgetting somebody important, but I’m comfortable picking Chelios as the best modern Yank, with Brimsek in a class by himself as a goalie from a distant era. 8 consecutive end-of-season All-Star teams (with 2 years off for a World War) is no mean feat.

  62. Bruce says:

    Bruce, is that a photo of the meteor?

    Slipper: It’s one of them

    Is that where you’ve been- rock hunting?

    You do pay attention, don’t you? I’ve been outed … again.

  63. Jonathan says:

    I agree on the caveats wrt the home record, Doogie.

    My problem with MacTavish isn’t the record; it’s the process. I think the record has been OK, but running Staios-Strudwick as a third pairing and then refusing to put Smid in because they’ve been so great defies logic.

  64. IceDragoon says:

    Dennis: it’s been “next year” now for three of the last four seasons and I’m tiring of it.

    I think you misunderstand my “next year”, Dennis. I certainly haven’t expected this team to become a top seed in any of the last few years. A strong year of growth this year will set us up for “next year”, tho, imho.

    Adding/subtracting integral pieces each off season doesn’t translate into building a powerhouse expected to win playoff rounds. We need a summer of relative inactivity… fill a small hole or two… allow for some maturation of the team. More continuity, less bat**** early in the year would be golden “next year”, imho.

    Of course, I’m always hopeful that the hockey gods will smile on us, but I don’t expect it.

  65. doritogrande says:

    Retaking 4th place in the NW just got a lot easier.

    Joe Sakic out 6 weeks with a herniated disc in his back.

  66. Kris says:

    Jonathon says:

    “More on the Oilers’ road record this season – since the lockout, it would have ranked 8th, 6th and 4th in the Western Conference.

    A bit off I think:

    07/08: Tied for 7th
    06/07: Tied for 7th
    05/06: Tied for 5th

    If the Oil were in the east:
    07/08: Lower than 8th
    06/07: Lower than 8th
    05/06: Tied for 7th

    Perhaps I should modify my conclusion: teams with average road records tend to miss the playoffs but sometimes sneek into one of the last 3 spots.

    A cap team should be capable of competing for spots 4-6, and that’s not easy with a 500 road record.

    Another way of putting it is in Bayesian terms:

    Suppose:

    s= Getting a playoff spot
    r= Having an average road record

    Then P(s given r) = 14/48 or slightly less than 1/3

    Of course, if playoff spots were determined by a random lottery, the probability of any team getting a playoff spot would be 16/30– just over 1/2.

    Thus, even though the Oilers are spending a lot on salaries this year, the odds of their making the playoffs, if they don’t improve on the road, are less than if there were a playoff lottery. You’d think spending all that money should have improved their chances, no?

    Anyway, I’m willing to give up on this argument, but I’m losing patience with the brass. The excuses are getting tired.

  67. Asiaoil says:

    Is any coach particularly responsible for the PK this season? If the answer is Buchburger – then one of the reasons for the big drop off is obvious – the other is the bizarre use of personal which may also be related to a new coach.

  68. toqueboy says:

    @bruce

    cool shots of the rocks. what type of info are people hoping to cull from them?

  69. slipper says:

    “cool shots of the rocks. what type of info are people hoping to cull from them?”

    I would have been trying ot cull that Milly girl’s phone number.

    PhD candidate… that’s not a high school course, is it?

  70. Jonathan says:

    Kris: Are you sure? Here’s what I got (from NHL.com):

    2008-09

    Detroit: 10-2-2
    SJ: 8-3-0
    Minnesota: 7-3-0
    Anaheim: 7-3-1
    Vancouver: 7-6-1
    Edmonton: 8-8-0

    2007-08

    San Jose: 27-10-4
    Detroit: 25-12-4
    Dallas: 22-14-5
    Phoenix: 21-17-3
    Calgary: 21-19-1
    Edmonton: 20-20-1
    Nashville: 18-18-5
    Vancouver: 18-18-5

    2006-07

    San Jose: 26-14-1
    Vancouver: 23-15-3
    Nashville: 23-15-3
    Anaheim: 22-14-5
    Dallas: 22-14-5
    Colorado: 22-15-4
    Detroit: 21-15-5
    Edmonton: 20-20-1

    2005-06

    Detroit: 31-7-3
    Dallas: 25-12-4
    Edmonton (05-06): 21-13-7
    Edmonton: 20-20-1
    Nashville: 17-17-7
    Anaheim: 17-17-7

    I consider a 20-20-1 record (Edmonton’s current projection) to be better than 19-19-3 because it gives away fewer points to the opposition – in the first case, the opposition manages 41 points and in the second 42, and so on.

    Thus, the Oilers would rank 6th, 6th, 8th, and 4th based on the post-lockout seasons. I see nothing to suggest that .500 on the road is a non-playoff record.

  71. Jonathan says:

    Also, Kris:

    I think it is entirely possible that Eastern teams in general post better regular season road records than Western teams because of the difference in travel; most of the EC is confined to a much smaller geographic area than the WC.

  72. mc79hockey says:

    I’ve looked into that before; I can’t find the post but, IIRC, road advantage is bigger for WC teams than it is for EC teams.

  73. mc79hockey says:

    Sorry, that should be home ice advantage is bigger for WC teams.

  74. Kris says:

    Jonathon:

    Yeah, I think our disagreement about who finished where is just about winning percentage versus number of wins. I concede the point.

    Indeed, I’m willing to concede the argument; I do see what you’re saying and I understand that there are more worrisome things about the club than the road record.

    But still, you must admit that this “500 on the road is okay” idea is a bit of an oversimplification.

    Only two teams -in the Western conference, since the lockout- have done better than 6th place while playing 500 or worse on the road. Those two teams were the 05/06 Predators and the 05/06 Preds. However, each of those teams won more than 30 games at home! I don’t think the Oil are going to win 30 at home, nor do you, I think.

    So, a 500 record on the road, is likely to limit any team to a low seeded playoff spot AT BEST. But the real problem is that many teams with near 500 road records do not make the playoffs. 4 western teams in 07/08, two western teams in 06/07, and one team in 05/06 with near 500 road records did not make the playoffs.

    So a near 500 road record is compatible with a low seed playoff spot or no playoff spot, which is of course what the Oil have been achieving for almost two decades now.

    Again, not good enough.

  75. Kris says:

    Oop, hat should read 05/06 preds and 05/06 flamers

  76. Kris says:

    And of course, ‘hat’ should read ‘that.’

  77. JB-"jiggyman" says:

    I don’t think Staios is done. He just tends to play around the level of his partner… always has. To get the best out of him put competence beside him.

    I agree with everything your saying except this statement is way off.

    Souray, Smid, Strudwick have all had their level of play appear to nose dive when paired with Staios. Our PK bleeds goals against, so does Staios. He’s clearly the weak link imo.

  78. Bruce says:

    Souray, Smid, Strudwick have all had their level of play appear to nose dive when paired with Staios. Our PK bleeds goals against, so does Staios. He’s clearly the weak link imo.

    Weakest link to me is Strudwick, although Staios is not far behind. Together they are a disaster.

    And with that I am actually off to see tonight’s game, my first live game of this peripatetic regular season. Enjoy the game, everybody!

  79. Jonathan says:

    Only two teams -in the Western conference, since the lockout- have done better than 6th place while playing 500 or worse on the road.

    I know this is the loser point muddling the issue again, but Minnesota won the division last season with a 19-17-5 road record (43 points, or two more than the Oilers are projected for, and 3 games under .500) and Anaheim finished 4th with a 19-18-4 record (1 point above the Oilers pojected finish).

    It isn’t a top-two record, to be sure, and ideally the team would be above .500, but for those of us who projected a finish between 4th and 8th, it isn’t really disappointing.

  80. Jonathan says:

    That’s a good post, Bruce.

    RiversQ put up a defense of Staios (in the context of Staios and Strudwick vs. Staios or Strudwick) at IOF, which is well worth the read.

    It’s tentative, given the sample sizes involved, but it would appear that Jason Strudwick is Jonah.

  81. Coach pb9617 says:

    Couple of notes pregame:

    LT, we talked about a Gagner comp and I brought up Perreault. The modern day Perreault is Modano.

    Rangers fans want Avery back and the Pens just gave Cooke an A. Disgusting. I guess everyone loves their own asshole.

    And in his first game with an A, Cooke purposefully rides Dubinsky into the corner of the glass at the end of the bench and then waits to extend into him after he’s got Dubinsky prone to the turnbuckle. Disgusting.

  82. Coach pb9617 says:

    Joe Sakic out 6 weeks with a herniated disc in his back.

    Ouch. Having suffered through one, I have no idea how he’s going to have a pillow fight in six weeks, let alone play hockey.

  83. Coach pb9617 says:

    Weakest link to me is Strudwick, although Staios is not far behind. Together they are a disaster.

    Holy crap Bruce. When you read through these after the game, I want to say thanks for the work and will someone please bench 24/43
    ?

  84. slipper says:

    Good to see you back and agreeing with me, Bruce.

    BTW, if I haven’t mentioned it before, I absolutely love your documentary film making.

    Enjoy the game.

  85. RiversQ says:

    JB jiggyman: your statement re: Staios is just plain wrong at least with respect to his time with Strudwick. 43 has been terrible at ES regardless of his partner.

  86. doritogrande says:

    Anyone else watching the Sens game?

    I wish we had a first line that played this well. Spezza-Heatley-Alfredson are a real treat to watch.

    And Alex Auld is proving a lot of pundits wrong. This guy’s a bonafide NHL starting goalie, and good for him after being hung out to dry after his fantastic debut season in Vancouver when Cloutier went down.

  87. doritogrande says:

    AHL update:

    Midway through the third it’s a 3-3tie for the Falcons. The line of Potulny-Lerg-Trukhno is carrying the mail tonight with Schremp being up with the big team. All three are a big +2 on the night.

    Gilbert Brule however, is being lit up. -2 on the night.

    Ryan Huddy, son of Charlie is playing tonight. He’s having a strong season with Stockton in the E.

  88. JB-"jiggyman" says:

    your statement re: Staios is just plain wrong at least with respect to his time with Strudwick. 43 has been terrible at ES regardless of his partner.

    You may be right. But are Struckwicks numbers actually worse when he’s paired with someone besides Staios? I’d be shocked if they didn’t improve without Staios as a partner.

    I thought Strudwick played great vs Dallas once Visnovsky went down.

    I’m not doubting the Staios-Strudwick pairing is horrible. But everything i’ve seen leads me to believe Staios’ play makes things far more difficult for his partner than it should be.

  89. doritogrande says:

    AHL update:

    It’s now 5-3 and Gilbert Brule seems to have lost his cool. Already having a fighting major earlier in the game, he took a penalty to put the Falcons down two men. Lowell scored making it 4-3. It now shows him as taking a boarding major, also resulting in a 10 minute game misconduct. Said major penalty took place exactly 16 seconds after he got out of the box. That sounds like a retaliation kind of thing to me.

  90. doritogrande says:

    Edit:

    I read wrong. Brule took the first Falcons penalty, followed by Roy. The Devils scored 3 seconds after the Brule minor expired (8:08 of the period). The boarding call took place at 8:21.

  91. doritogrande says:

    Sens game done…

    GOILERS!

  92. bookie says:

    OMG, what a terrible start…

    Just practicing.

  93. doritogrande says:

    Ray Ferraro just called Mathieu Garon a “fragile goaltender”

    Um, what?

    Shit. Peeters got to him too.

  94. doritogrande says:

    Turco’s back.

    Horcoff scores from the blueline.

  95. Black Dog says:

    Good one Bookie.

    Even better by Horc.

  96. bookie says:

    I mean FANTASTIC start…

  97. PDO says:

    SCORECOFF! :D

    Looks like Turco remembered that it’s 08/09.

  98. RiversQ says:

    JB: Check my post at IOF that Jonathan referenced. I don’t have the minutes but if you consider how much they’ve played together, 43′s rates at ES are probably insanely bad without 24. Of course they do stnk to high heaven together.

  99. Lord Bob says:

    Can I get a “HORCOFF AND DIE!”?

    (Funny. Put three guys with great chemistry together and stuff starts happening!)

  100. Oil4lyfe says:

    horc with a rocket!!!! did that hit a stick?

  101. Black Dog says:

    Who is 88?

    He’s dreamy.

    Actually a good shift, nice backcheck.

  102. Showerhead says:

    Perfect warmup shift for Schremp. Generates turnover, dumps puck in, takes hit to make a play, and gets off before he has a chance to get trapped or fuck up.

    Already looks better than last year, and I mean that (as a cautiously optimistic compliment).

  103. Showerhead says:

    So what did they talk about on the plane? Or is Dallas just that spent.

  104. bookie says:

    Ugly elbow to the head. He will be fine I am sure.

  105. Lord Bob says:

    God, as a Victorian without digital I missed TSN showing Oilers games. SHOVE OFF, SPORTSNET WEST!

  106. PDO says:

    Well, the officials just let 89 take an elbow to the head, and now 26 is hauled down.

    I swear to god if we lose this game on a ticky-tacky call I will go ape.

  107. Jonathan says:

    I love the snarly 44.

  108. Lord Bob says:

    Garon’s got the flu, as in he just flu out and stoned James Neal.

  109. doritogrande says:

    Garon with a huge save. Bet that gets his confidance back.

  110. Black Dog says:

    PDO – no feces flinging

    not a bad save

  111. Jonathan says:

    No, DG – a mentally tough goaltender wouldn’t have let it be that close.

  112. Black Dog says:

    running brodziak line plus 44/77 against Richards

  113. doritogrande says:

    Mathieu Garon = Gumby?

    I love it.

  114. Oil4lyfe says:

    a gumby like garon
    man i miss ferraro

  115. Lord Bob says:

    Hey, look, Fatso got caught out on a long shift! MacTavish is probably making out with him as we speak.

  116. Black Dog says:

    and now they switch to 10 plus 71/37

  117. Jonathan says:

    Dustin Penner in the offensive zone >>> Dustin Penner anywhere else.

  118. bookie says:

    Johnathan is correct, that was a horrific save other than right at the end. Otherwise he was flopping around like a seal. That is why he was so out of position.

    Please note that I am totally a Garon supporter, but I think that “unbelievable” should be reserved for saves that are at least impressive.

  119. slipper says:

    Grebeshkov is a frigging enigma.

    Baffling play leading to the Garon save. Follows it up with two or three cute plays to create a couple chances.

  120. Jonathan says:

    1 even-strength goal for Selanne.

    What a bust.

  121. RiversQ says:

    Man, the Horpensky love is getting ridiculous. Isn’t it obvious that 10 and 83 are outstanding players that produce just fine without Penner, meanwhile 27 is pretty mediocre without them?

  122. Jonathan says:

    By the way, Toby Peterson has more even strength goals than Teemu Selanne.

    And you thought MacTavish was silly to use him on the powerplay.

  123. Lord Bob says:

    Yes, 10-83 are magic. But 27-10-83 provides more magic than anybodyelse-10-83.

    It’s like Wayne Gretzky and Dave Lumley. Obviously, Gretzky was the cream of that pairing, but he did more with Dave Lumley than he did with anybody else exactly as skilled as Dave Lumley.

  124. doritogrande says:

    Riv:

    I dunno man. 10 and 83 didn’t look like impressive players when they were with 26.

  125. Black Dog says:

    Schremp has won more puck battles this period then his whole career combined to now.

    Where’s my all star ballot?

    Cogliano is feisty.

  126. Showerhead says:

    One more 1v1 battle for Schremp, but then he coasts behind the net on a Souray shot. When #44 is shooting, you get your ass to the net. Still impressed overall compared to his “debut” last year b/c, well, he hasn’t fallen over yet.

    Not sure if it’s intentional or not but he has been the 3rd F on that line off the bench for 2/3 shifts by my eye. Also not sure if it’s by design or because he’s too slow, but he has been the high F in the zone as much as possible in addition to entering the zone as the 3F as well.

  127. doritogrande says:

    Did Cole just draw ANOTHER penalty?

    Oh man, he did.

  128. bookie says:

    All of my allstar votes are for Montreal and Detroit – its time to get rid of this stupid voting system for the ALL Star game.

  129. RiversQ says:

    Jonathan: Good point regarding Penner. As long as he doesn’t carry the puck into the zone, he’s usually dangerous.

    However, he might be the worst Oiler in the neutral zone and he’s average at best in his own end.

    In other news, Cole continues to draw an insane number of penalties. It’d be nice if he could do something else too.

  130. Black Dog says:

    showerhead – i noticed that too; i think he’s making sure he doesn’t get caught

  131. Jonathan says:

    Not to go all Lowetide on everyone, but Penner’s an impact player in a narrow range.

    It’s what he is, and he can be useful when he’s used correctly.

  132. Showerhead says:

    With that whistle, good night everyone and hopefully the bar’s got this one on TV so I can sneak a peek from time to time. Pat will provide my same insights plus more, plus it will be better written while I’m gone ;)

    Cheers, gents.

  133. doritogrande says:

    Pretty nice dive by the captain there.

  134. doritogrande says:

    showerhead:

    If you work there, can’t you find the remote?

  135. Lord Bob says:

    We’re playing against a team running out Mike Ribeiro on the penalty kill. How can we not win this?

  136. RiversQ says:

    doritogrande: actually I thought they looked alright and I suspect the underlying numbers (Corsi, SC, faceoffs) were decent but they barely played together so I’m not sure how much to draw from it. I’ll check the numbers in a sec.

    I’ll also say that Horc’s EV numbers were pretty good before getting lots of 27 time and Hemsky has scored with anyone.

  137. Jonathan says:

    Schremp forces another turnover.

    Good game, thus far.

  138. Lord Bob says:

    If we ran out a powerplay combo of Schremp, Gagner, and Hemsky, will that be the highest combination of jersey numbers in NHL history?

  139. slipper says:

    “…meanwhile 27 is pretty mediocre without them?”

    That’s not exactly supported by the EV+/EV- results so far.

    Hemsky and Horcoff have given up more and produced less away from Penner than Penner has away from them.

  140. doritogrande says:

    “If we ran out a powerplay combo of Schremp, Gagner, and Hemsky, will that be the highest combination of jersey numbers in NHL history?”

    Nedved, Smyth, Hemsky.

  141. Black Dog says:

    yeah slipper but Penner is fat and lazy

  142. Jonathan says:

    RiversQ: I did a post the other day about 10-83 with different wingers. Here were the outshooting ratios (IIRC):

    w/ Penner: 185/100
    w/ Nilsson: 180/100
    w/ Cole: 103/100
    w/ Moreau: 70/100

    Small sample sizes, mostly, but the numbers are interesting all the same.

  143. doritogrande says:

    Decline the penalty. Decline the penalty!

  144. Lord Bob says:

    Dear Landon Wilson,

    If you have to take an obstruction penalty on Dustin Penner in the neutral zone, hockey probably isn’t your sport.

  145. bookie says:

    PP better be better than its been!

  146. Lord Bob says:

    GEE, GEE, VISNOVSKY!

    WHOA WHOA, COGLIANO!

  147. doritogrande says:

    Scrap the decline thingy. Visnovsky bomb. Nice pass from Cogliano.

  148. Black Dog says:

    phew – needed that – 0 fer 3 might have come back to bite them in the ass

  149. PDO says:

    Big PP goal.

    Oilers have been (and given that Dallas appears to be a pretty shitty club AND is playing in their 3rd city in 4 days SHOULD BE) dominant this game.

    Good times.

  150. doritogrande says:

    Cheeseburger with his 2nd assist tonight.

  151. Jonathan says:

    Keep talking, DG. I think Visnovsky scored that just to spite you.

    Oh, and hey – it isn’t just MacTavish who plays the same goalie in b2b games.

  152. bookie says:

    Wow, I should be a coach. “Ok boys, we have to be better than we have been. Now go out there and do that”

    Easy as Elsisha… wait, I am not going there!

  153. Coach pb9617 says:

    Why, oh why, did it take 20 games for 27-10-83 to be on the same line?

    And thanks Dustin, for your huge ass. Mac may hate it, but to do goalies.

  154. Oil4lyfe says:

    great shot lubo. probably best period of year so far.

  155. slipper says:

    Oh, and Penner has performed well on the powerplay, too.

    Rivs, if what you believe about him is true then the pendelum is bound to swing the other way eventually. But until then…

  156. Coach pb9617 says:

    Man, the Horpensky love is getting ridiculous. Isn’t it obvious that 10 and 83 are outstanding players that produce just fine without Penner, meanwhile 27 is pretty mediocre without them?

    They didn’t seem to produce on the power play or at ES with Cole.

  157. slipper says:

    w/ Penner: 185/100
    w/ Nilsson: 180/100
    w/ Cole: 103/100
    w/ Moreau: 70/100

    That’s the extension of the argument. Even if Penner is not the catalyst on that line, his results indicate that he’s the best option from the roster.

  158. Coach pb9617 says:

    Dallas announcers fawning over Peterson “His strong play has enabled Modano to play on the Richards line”

    Also:

    “MacTavish barking about attacking from the outside for the entire practice”

  159. Jonathan says:

    Off-topic: I’m watching the Dallas broadcast (seriously) and they have this Ric Renner character on during the intermission.

    He’s about 40 but he’s got a great big ceaser-ish cut (long too) died blonde.

    It’s pretty awesome.

  160. slipper says:

    “yeah slipper but Penner is fat and lazy”

    He’s been fat and lazy more than he has not been fat and lazy, but currently he hasn’t been playing fat and lazy, so do we keep the torches lit and the pitchforks in hand, or can we just be satisifed that we presently have atleast one line that’s making a difference and that we don’t have to worry about?

  161. Black Dog says:

    was it Cole or just a poor start for them? Hemsky took off when, game seven or eight?

    pretty good start, obviously

    not to beat a dead horse but Schremp has looked fine tonight, far better then he did in any of his previous cameos, good puck support, he has won some battles and he does not look nervous at all

    I think they told him he was going to get his icetime – just play your game

    definitely playing it careful on the rush though, taking his time going up ice when Gagner was carrying it at one point

    the word for Tom Gilbert – poise

  162. Derek says:

    “Oilers have been (and given that Dallas appears to be a pretty shitty club AND is playing in their 3rd city in 4 days SHOULD BE) dominant this game.”

    Dominant? Dallas didn’t get very man shots but I thought the Oilers played pretty sloppy. Way too many neutral zone turnovers and boy were those first two PP’s ugly

  163. Jonathan says:

    Slipper: The Oilers are what you’d call a target-rich environment. I need my pitchfork/torch for MacTavish, Horcoff, Souray, Pouliot, Nilsson, Gagner, Stortini – I really have no time ofr Penner if he’s producing.

  164. Oilman says:

    great play by Vishnovsky to keep the play inside the Dallas zone just before getting the goal there – knocked a hard clearing attempt out of the air.

  165. RiversQ says:

    Interesting stuff slipper. (That site has the ES TOI I needed for the 24/43 post too. I have to go back to that.)

    That is hard to argue with, because 27 definitely looks good there. I guess the fact that he helps keep the puck in the other end when it gets there is outweighing his deficiencies elsewhere.

  166. Coach pb9617 says:

    It’s what he is, and he can be useful when he’s used correctly.

    Oh dear, that’s so…he’s at least 25 years too old for that haircut.

    Perhaps stylists in Dallas are a bit lax to catch up.

  167. Coach pb9617 says:

    By the way – Gilbert and Lubo may have played the some of their best hockey of the year in that period.

  168. pboy says:

    Dear Landon Wilson,

    If you have to take an obstruction penalty on Dustin Penner in the neutral zone, hockey probably isn’t your sport.

    I laughed at this for a solid two minutes.

    Do you guys think MacT was stealing glances at Peterson on the Dallas bench during our first two PP’s and thinking about what could have been?

  169. PDO says:

    Dominant? Dallas didn’t get very man shots but I thought the Oilers played pretty sloppy. Way too many neutral zone turnovers and boy were those first two PP’s ugly

    Maybe dominant is a bit strong – but Dallas had one scoring chance. It was a damn good period.

  170. slipper says:

    Penner is also presently 3rd in EV Pts/60, 1st in GA/60, 1st in GF/60, 3rd in Corsi, and 1st in PP GF/60 (albeit in limited time seeing as hisn role on PP has been epxanded only in the last 6-7 games).

    That’s nothing to fucking sniff at.

  171. Black Dog says:

    pboy – my god man

    good stuff

  172. doritogrande says:

    slipper:

    I believe Penner also leads the team in +/-.

  173. RiversQ says:

    coach: I’m pretty sure that quote is wrong – Reaugh said MacT wanted them to “attack wide” which I understood as taking the dman wide when taking the zone given the play on the ice to which he was referring.

    The way you quoted it suggests he wants them to play on the perimeter which is in complete contradiction to all the quotes we’ve seen out of him recently. (Like say the ones about Cogs and Nilsson that got the HF crowd all riled up about how MacT doesn’t know how to coach offense.)

  174. Black Dog says:

    but slipper, he’s fat and … ah never mind

    hey he’s been playing well since they sat him

    Brodziak too

    imagine

  175. Dennis says:

    I can’t believe Sean Avery made Turco miss that first goal!!!;)

    71 has a good track record but Should he beat Turco that clean on the 2-0 goal?

    Pretty good period by the Oil – I’d say great but this is a poor/young Stars team on the road on the back-end of a BTB so there’s only so much credit I’ll give them – they outchanced the Stars 6-2 and didn’t take penalties.

    Some other stuff:

    - there’s a hard match with 18-61-26 vs Modano-Richards. That line also drew two penalties.

    - Shrimp made a couple of nice plays and looks more up for the battle.

    - Bob Mac basically just said what I’d been saying over at BOA today: the Stars are using this latest episode as a the final reason to say they don’t want anything else to do with Avery. Duthie immeadiately realized what this might look like – that the Stars players weren’t really that upset over his comments – and he almost stammered in saying, “but they were still upset over his comments!”

    I saw the pre-game vid on the Oilers site today talking to Strudwick and Garon, both former Avery teammates, and the former had a wicked smirk on his face the whole time and Garon seemed non-plussed about it as well.

  176. Jonathan says:

    It’s fun listening to the Dallas guys talk about Turco.

    Remember when Conkkanen was in net and things got so bad that you’d feel the urge to blame the sakters for allowing the opposition to toss a puck on net in the offensive zone?

    Dallas feels our pain.

  177. doritogrande says:

    “hey he’s been playing well since they sat him

    Brodziak too

    imagine”

    Sit Hemsky down? Tank the next two games and see what we get when he gets back? Pat, you brilliant bastard.

  178. slipper says:

    Rivers: I found that site from the links on your site’s sidebar;)

    It’s a good one.

  179. RiversQ says:

    slipper: It looks to me like about the only bad number he has got are the faceoffs.

    That’s some context for the w/ 27 and w/o 27 numbers.

    Penner on the season: 59 Def/80 Off (faceoffs to start the shift at ES)

    With 83 and 10 and 27 as a line they are 26 Def/20 Off.

    Which means Penner is a whopping 33 Def/60 Off without those two guys which is easily in the Cogs/Gagner territory for avoiding def. zone faceoffs.

  180. bookie says:

    How the F, do you hire someone for four years for like 15 million $ and then dump him 22 games in. I mean, what were they expecting from Avery.

    WOW, thats a nice signing!

  181. doritogrande says:

    SCHREMP!!!

  182. Lord Bob says:

    That’s one.

  183. Jonathan says:

    That talentless plug Marc Pouliot got a goal.

  184. RiversQ says:

    slipper said…
    Rivers: I found that site from the links on your site’s sidebar;)

    It’s a good one.

    Oh fuck my site. Who looks at that anyway?

    (To all: If you don’t, you’d better because Vic has been kicking extra ass this year. I’m just a Penner-like passenger ;) Actually I’m more a Garon-like passenger.)

  185. slipper says:

    The PRODIGY!

    Good shift.

  186. Black Dog says:

    OK, that was a terrific pass.

    Where has this guy been?!?!

    Where!?

  187. Jonathan says:

    78-88 had a nice little combo there.

    It wouldn’t have happened if 71 hadn’t kept the puck in at the blueline, though.

  188. slipper says:

    Rivers: I agree with that about the faceoffs. But based upon your own observations about Penner’s ability in his defensive zone, that’s just good coaching.

    Oh fuck! Did I just say good coaching? Duck and cover.

  189. Jonathan says:

    A mentally strong goaltender would have added a little flash to that glove save.

  190. Black Dog says:

    You’ve had the flu for a month too, rivers? Chicken soup, man, chicken soup.

    dg – I was thinking more Gagner.

    And Strudwick. Except no need to bring him back.

    He and Staios are just all over the place.

  191. Jonathan says:

    The Stars commentary team has been taking McGuire lessons. Now they’re gushing about Garon’s legs.

    Personally, I think if he was a little stronger mentally, his legs would be quicker.

  192. Black Dog says:

    Say what you will about Toby Do-It-All but he’s a smart player.

  193. doritogrande says:

    Huh. The cutesy soft back pass isn’t just a characteristic of our kid line. Cole just did it too.

  194. Jonathan says:

    From these awesome Dallas guys:

    “Marty’s been off his game a little bit.”

    I’m really enjoying this.

  195. Coach pb9617 says:

    So Pouliot only needed Sugartits to make him go.

  196. Jonathan says:

    Very nice save, Garon.

    Also, Mike Ribeiro better be careful if he wants to go 1-on-1 with Sheldon Souray.

  197. doritogrande says:

    If Turco’s in his crease I have no problem with that penalty. However, if he’s outside the blue paint he should be fair game.

  198. Coach pb9617 says:

    Huh. The cutesy soft back pass isn’t just a characteristic of our kid line. Cole just did it too.

    It started as Hemsky and Gagner. Hemsky stopped and now it’s Cole, Gagner, Nilsson, Moreau, Grebs.

  199. RiversQ says:

    BDHS: Nope, I brought in my old creative writing prof to help me perform better at IOF and Vic got all pissed and took away my log in.

    You didn’t hear that from me.

  200. Black Dog says:

    rivers – well, glad to see you post; I had mentioned to Vic a few weeks back that we were missing a lot of the old hands

    nice PK

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