Reasonable at the AS Break (F’s- the Rest)

Every season NHL teams need help in role positions and send a call to the farm. In some seasons these men emerge as bona fide NHL players, passing others on the depth chart and creating some trouble in terms of roster slots.

We may have that situation for the Edmonton Oilers at the major league level at this time.

The player in question (Gilbert Brule) appears to be forcing his way onto the team at the expense of several others (including Liam Reddox in photo).

Let’s begin by listing the games played (and boxcar numbers) by callups in the 08-09 season (through the All-Star break):

  • Liam Reddox 23gp, 3-2-5
  • Steve MacIntyre 15gp, 1-0-1
  • Gilbert Brule 11gp, 2-1-3
  • Ryan Potulny 4gp, 0-3-3
  • Rob Schremp 4gp, 0-3-3
  • Tim Sestito 1gp, 0-0-0

I think that’s correct (please post any errors/omissions). There’s not much to say about the players who’ve dressed for fewer than 5 games except that Potulny looked very good and Schremp showed his impressive skill and why he isn’t in Edmonton fulltime in equal measure.

Let’s take a look at the three players who have played 10 or more games and see if one of them emerges as useful moving forward.

  • Reddox -18.4
  • Brule -18.6
  • MacIntyre -30.1

We don’t really expect MacIntyre to perform well in any measurable area outside his role, but this is a very poor Corsi. He plays with dregs and against the least skilled men on the other side and still manages a dire rating. Ivanans in LA has a -6.8, Boogaard in Minny is -9.4. Reddox and Brule have been up and down with Corsi since arriving, according to Desjardins Reddox has been playing with much better linemates and against about the same level competition (which looks right based on viewings). So, Brule would seem to be the superior player from this group.


  • Reddox 7-10
  • Brule 3-6

Their GF/GA ON numbers are similar but Reddox has a better GA ON/60 (2.79 to 3.48). We’re not talking tremendous sample sizes and we know Reddox has been with better players so I don’t know if we can draw any conclusions here.


  • Brule 1.74
  • Reddox 1.40

I think this is a pretty strong tell despite the fact we’re not dealing in huge minutes overall. Brule has played with inferior help and is posting a better number. Brule has had 103EV minutes while Reddox has enjoyed 216EV minutes this season.

So if we’re looking at a candidate to send out it would probably be Reddox from the group. The obvious candidate to release is Jason Strudwick but I doubt the Oilers make that move.

Possible Callups

Jonathan Willis continues to lap the field with his Springfield numbers. It’ll be interesting to see how the season ending numbers shake out but as Jonathan mentioned it looks like we can break down the “toughness of minutes” in Springfield into three distinct categories:

Heavy Lifting

  1. Tim Sestito: 1.867
  2. Liam Reddox: 1.853
  3. Tyler Spurgeon: 1.819
  4. Colin McDonald: 1.710


  1. Carl Corazzini: 1.674
  2. Bryan Lerg: 1.638
  3. Guillaume Lefebvre: 1.610
  4. Geoff Paukovich: 1.590
  5. Vyacheslav Trukhno: 1.575

Soft Parade

  1. Gilbert Brule: 1.536
  2. Derek Bekar: 1.536
  3. Ryan Potulny: 1.524
  4. Rob Schremp: 1.480
  5. Ryan O’Marra: 1.255
  6. Stephane Goulet: 1.190

I admit it’s a completely random break between categories with a healthy dose of logic (checking line plus Reddox at the top, veteran AHLers plus smart college men and those with a two-way rep in column two along with a thug or two, and then the guys who need to kick out the jams offensively lining up (when possible) against the dregs.

So, I think we can reasonably argue that the pecking order for end-of-the-roster players goes Brule, MacIntyre, Reddox at the major league level (with a coin in the wishing well for Strudwick’s walking papers) and then the callups would be players who played tough minutes and got results OR those who absolutely killed the soft parade.

Let’s line up Jonathan’s results with AHL EV scoring per game and see what we get:

  1. Potulny 37gp, 11-8-19 -4 (soft parade-.514/gm)
  2. Schremp 34gp, 2-12-14 -5 (soft parade-.412/gm)
  3. Reddox 13gp, 2-3-5 -2 (heavy lifting-.385/gm)
  4. Corazzini 44gp, 5-11-16 -5 (midlevel-.364/gm)
  5. Brule 20gp, 5-2-7 -2 (soft parade-.350/gm)
  6. Lerg 33gp, 6-5-11 -7 (midlevel-.333/gm)
  7. Trukhno 27gp, 1-8-9 -1 (mid-level-.333/gm)
  8. Bekar 39gp, 5-5-10 +1 (soft parade-.256/gm)
  9. Goulet 14gp, 1-2-3 +2 (soft parade-.214/gm)
  10. Spurgeon 44gp, 3-6-9 -1 (heavy lifting-.205/gm)
  11. McDonald 41gp, 3-4-7 -7 (heavy lifting-.171/gm)
  12. Lefevbre 43gp, 2-5-7 -5 (midlevel-.163/gm)
  13. Paukovich 27gp, 1-3-4 -8 (midlevel-.148gm)
  14. O’Marra 32gp, 1-3-4 -6 (soft parade-.125/gm)
  15. Sestito 35gp, 3-0-3 -8 (heavy lifting-.086/gm)

The callups are in bold. I’m going to be posting on this information in the next few days (the AHL break isn’t here yet) but thought it would be a good idea to post some of the numbers now.

Among the tough minute men, Reddox and Sestito have already seen the NHL and Spurgeon has some skills that may make him useful. McDonald appears ready to join Deborah Harry on the Island of Lost Souls. O’Marra is already there and owns property.

Among the midsection there have been no recalls which makes sense (who orders porridge?) with Lerg probably a year away from getting his NHL shot (or more).

From the Doors collection we have two recalls (Potulny and Schremp) with no one else in sight.

So, ranking the AHL players who made Jonathan’s list (and excluding Ryan Stone who I’ll deal with later) the natural callups would be Potulny, Schremp, Reddox and Brule. Only Sestito stands out and as we know there was a specific reason (grit, aggression) for his recall.

As always seems to be the case, the phone rings when you’re ready.

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29 Responses to "Reasonable at the AS Break (F’s- the Rest)"

  1. knighttown says:

    Good final piece to a neat little series of posts. Agree on a few fronts.

    I’m about done with MacIntyre, or at least, I like Stortini much better. Mac has had one positive series this entire season, that being the huge hit on Boyd and the beatdown of Prust that followed. The problem is the middleweights of the NHL took notice and really won’t give him a shot. I’d play him against Minnesota and that’d be about it.

    On Strudwick, I see no reason to be hasty with him. We’ve been extremely lucky with defensive health this season and the smart money says we get down to number 8 or 9 on the depth chart by year’s end. So then it becomes Strudwick vs. (likely) Peckham and Roy and until proven otherwise I’ll keep Strudwick. While playing as the #12F, he has been a part of the most effective 4th line unit we’ve had so far when he, Brodz and Zorg got going a few games ago. Plus he’s a pretty good fighter and by all accounts a positive guy in the room.

    My bottom 8 would be:
    Cogs with Poo and Piss

    Brodz-Moreau and

    MacIntyre-vs. Minnesota
    Strudwick vs. Calgary, Vancouver
    Brule/Reddox vs. the rest

  2. Bruce says:

    The obvious candidate to release is Jason Strudwick but I doubt the Oilers make that move.

    So do I,and I hpoe they don’t. Strudwick’s status as a 500 GP vet shoud not be sold short. He’s the 7th defenceman in a pinch, and while his performance on the blueline was poor enough to indicate that we should call somebody up in case of a longer-term injury, he can pinch hit at short notice. (Plan B is MacIntyre? egads)

    Strudwick has been quite decent as a forward (+20/18 by Dennis’s scoring chance metric), has done the job in a couple of tilts, and by all accounts is well-liked and -respected in the room. He is comfortable in a part-time role. All told, he remains the ideal 23rd man on the roster that he should have been right from the beginning. With the goalie situation resolved, Strudwick gives us an option up front while allowing 14 full-time forwards in the mix.

    I’d be cutting ties with MacIntyre first … although I’d be hiring somebody else to tell him the news.

  3. Alice says:

    KT – you’ve been prolific tha last couple of days. Has something changed in your domestic situation? We anticipate your Sadie Report ~

  4. bookie says:

    The problem with MacIntyre is not that sometimes you have to put him on the ice, but rather that he benches the whole 4th line for the game. This removes the possibility of an ‘energy line’. This is where someone like Laraque had value, essentially he can play the role of a Strudwick and a MacIntyre. In fact, if he concentrated on the game (as opposed to radio and volunteer stuff), I think he could make a real 4th line contribution to scoring. Now we have roster spots and close enough to the same salary (2/3 of it anyway) that we would have had in Laraque.

    The Oilers know this and they hoped that some begging by Katz and Lowe could overcome the hard feelings of the past, but it didn’t work out.

    I dont blame Lowe for dumping him because he wanted a no trade clause (he would have been the first Oiler to get one), but I think the team would be better with him than with what we have now.

  5. bookie says:

    With all of that noted, I am glad that Mac had his chance and managed to score an NHL goal. That’s a great story for all of the other ‘almostmadeits’ out there.

  6. Bruce says:

    Knighttown: I agree with almost everything you say, as usual I might add. In fact I said many of the same things myself, having not hit “refresh” before posting.

    But … re: your bottom 8, I am interpreting your assumption is of a healthy Pisani and a still-injured Stortini? Has anybody heard anything about a possible return date? “Out indefinitely” doesn’t really say much. Zorg and Brodz are key components of an “energy line” that can actually play.

    In fact, if he concentrated on the game (as opposed to radio and volunteer stuff), I think he could make a real 4th line contribution to scoring.

    Bookie: First of all, that focus just isn't ever going to happen with Laraque, no matter how much we might wish it so. I'm quite happy to let the Habs bite the 3-years @ $1.5 MM hit on Big Zhawrzh, who has been struggling with a back injury while posting brutal stats in limited ice time. According to BtN, +0.51/-2.53 per 60, and has played just 16 games of <8 minutes a night. Thanks, I'll take Stortini at less than half the cap hit. He's not the fighter that LGG is, but he's already a better hockey player and is 9 years younger. And he's w-a-y more focussed.

  7. Jonathan Willis says:

    That’s a nice post LT, and thanks again for the shout-out.

    On my AHL numbers, I’d suggest that the top and the bottom are probably pretty bang on, but based on what happened between this list and my last list, the middle section is pretty interchangeable.

    And on Strudwick, I kind of like him as a forward, and he seems to add some character to the room. It seems kind of mean, but I almost would just keep him as the pressbox guy for the rest of the year – he can sit there without deteriorating, and when injuries hit he looks like a decent 4th line fill-in.

  8. knighttown says:


    KT – you’ve been prolific tha last couple of days. Has something changed in your domestic situation? We anticipate your Sadie Report ~

    Hell ya something changed in my domestic situation…I got to go to work this weekend! I’d normally feel guilty about “time theft” but I sign the checks so, meh. Weekends are slow in pharmacy retail and I have a great pharmacy technician that can do all the work while I sit in my office and “look at financials”.

    My writing dries up during the work week or weekends off because there isn’t a moment to breathe. My internet time is spent playing the Emotions game on the Thomas the Train website with little Cameron.

    I keep getting the “scared” face confused with the “surprised” face so any tips would be great.

    But seriously, the reason I LOVE this blog is because no one posts anything that isn’t thought out and researched. The way it works for me is that I have CI and watch every game and lurk on this site every day. If my observations lead me to a view that I think might have been overlooked AND I can find the time to do the homework to see if my observations are backed up, then I’ll go ahead and do so.

    And as for the Quest for Sadie, it’s interesting that you ask (great memory btw). The ultrasound verified it is a girl and the missus thinks its too soon to talk names so I’ve started a Desjardins-like survey of my staff in which points are given to a select list of names based on votes of Yuck, meh or Yes! The current tally?

    T1. Sadie, Ella and Ava (115 points)
    T4. Lilly and Grace
    T6. Sophia/e and Elin
    8. Lucy
    9. Gabby
    10. Isabel/la

    @ Bruce

    Sorry you had to sort thru that, but yeah, I noticed we were double-teaming (wrestling style, not sexually) LT on Strudwick. And absolutely my bottom 8 is with Storts out. I can’t shake how bad that injury looked and until I see him out there I still think something snapped. Because he’d be such a good fit on the 4th with Brodziak and Moreau I actually think playing Reddox in his spot might be for the best so Brule can avoid the waivers thing. I’m not sure Brule is in our Top 12 when everyone is healthy and I feel very strongly that he’d be better served playing big minutes in the AHL than as a 13th forward in the NHL.

  9. Lowetide says:

    If we’d had another girl she would have been Lindsay or Ashley. And the one time the word “sexually” appears on my blog it’s one guy talking to another guy about tagteaming me.

    Al Gore, you got some ‘splainin’ to do. :-)

  10. Steve says:

    But seriously, the reason I LOVE this blog is because no one posts anything that isn’t thought out and researched.

    Come on – what am I, chopped liver?

  11. Lowetide says:

    Ah, Steve. You always make me laugh.

  12. College Wolf says:

    Hello Sir,

    This may be a bit “out of the blue”, but I thought perhaps that you might be interested. Bare with me if you’ve got a few minutes? I just found your site not too long ago, and I like what I’ve seen so far. I just wanted to ask if you wanted anything to do with expanding the interest/hits/popularity of your website? Anyways, rather then explain everything here in your blog comments, feel free to email me at: if you are interested, and I’d love to explain in more detail.

    Thanks and have a great night~

  13. Lowetide says:

    College Wolf: I’ve looked at it and will pass. Thanks, though.

  14. Alice says:

    /The ultrasound verified it is a girl/

    This might rule out ‘Stan Weir’, but that’s a good place to start negotiating. Anything you backpedal to from there is a slam-dunk!

    [And best of luck with the little hockey player]

  15. Doogie2K says:

    If I’d been a girl, I was to be named Carienne Lindsay Alice. No word on if I’d have still landed the nickname “Doogie” in high school.

    And Cogs wins fastest skater. Go Cogs.

  16. Doogie2K says:

    And now Mom tells me it’s Carrienne. Foine.

  17. Lowetide says:

    Depending on how old you are, you might have been named after one of my favorite Hollies songs (also Bus Stop is a terrific song but not a very good name).

  18. Jonathan Willis says:

    My dad wanted to name me Henry and my brither Clancy (Hank and Clank). Thankfully, my mother gets her way a lot of the time.

  19. Lowetide says:

    The night my daughter was born Pedro Astacio pitched well enough to get the “W” for the Dodgers and it put my roto team (“the Senators”) in first place in the Edmonton Roto League. I begged my wife to call her Astacio but she refused.

    I finished in second place that year.

  20. Doogie2K says:

    @LT: Only 22, and I doubt it was “Carrie Ann”; Mom’s not much of a Hollies fan, other than “Long Cool Woman”. I think she just liked the sound of the name, honestly.

  21. Bruce says:

    Bare with me if you’ve got a few minutes?

    Bare with me? How could you refuse a proposition like that?

  22. bookie says:

    Bare with me? How could you refuse a proposition like that?

    I agree with Bruce here, clearly this fellow is someone who has become so enthralled with your blog that he just wants to help you out. I think you were a bit harsh LT

    It reminds me a lot of this widow of a Nigerian Banker that I know…

  23. Peter says:

    Thought I’d post this for you guys. Brochu has that Omark’ll come ot NA next season. The link above has TOI (fairly limited) and S% (quite high), as well as other goodies on Omark.

    Omark scored two goals in a 5-0 win over SSK (Bjurling in nets for SSK).

  24. knighttown says:


    I call BS. You had Pedro Astachio on your team and you actually finished second?

    I’m going to assume this was your offense:

    1B: L.Gehrig
    2B: E. Banks
    SS: A. Rodriguez
    3B: M. Schmidt
    C: J. Bench
    OF: B. Ruth
    OF: M. Mantle
    OF: R. Henderson (cause that lineup doesn’t have much speed)

  25. Scott says:

    After seeing that Almtorp and Omark play on the same team, what advice do you think he might give younng Linus about a travel to North America to play for the Oilers?

  26. Lowetide says:

    Actually Astacio was a good bet because he only cost $4 in an average year and he consistently got through 5 innings in those seasons. You had to spend $1 on Antonio Osuna to get the garbage W’s and that’s two roster slots but everyone has room for these fellows at the end.

    Plus Chavez Ravine is a canyon so your ERA isn’t too bad and although LA always has some guy playing out of position Pedro’s WHIP wasn’t awful or anything.

    I won the league twice and he was on it both times btw.

  27. Woodguy says:

    The problem with MacIntyre is not that sometimes you have to put him on the ice, but rather that he benches the whole 4th line for the game. This removes the possibility of an ‘energy line’. This is where someone like Laraque had value, essentially he can play the role of a Strudwick and a MacIntyre. In fact, if he concentrated on the game (as opposed to radio and volunteer stuff), I think he could make a real 4th line contribution to scoring.

    I disagree Bookie. If you look at his ice time, Mac basically plays two shifts in the first, then sits unless needed for the rest of the game. He sits, not his line.

    MacTavish then fills his spot on the 4th with whoever is playing well, often putting Hemsky in the spot.

    Anytime you can get your best players more ice time is good. Getting Hemsky out there against 3rd pair defensmen is even better.

    MacTavish once said that Dave Brown didn’t even need to be on the bench, they just need a lifesize cut out of him there, and the opposition would “stay in line” with regards to the cheap stuff against your “A” players.

    Mac fills that roll well. Chippy stuff is kept to a minimum (for the most part) and MacTavish can get more ice time for effective players.

  28. Jonathan Willis says:

    @ Peter:

    Thanks for that, Peter. Most impressive part about it – if I’m reading correctly, only 16 of Omark’s 41 points have been scored on the powerplay.

    If we can assume scoring rates in the AHL and SEL are similar (big assumption, admittedly) that would put Omark at .558 PPG EV; ahead of everybody currently on Springfield.

  29. Jonathan Willis says:

    And, going one step further, if we use Desjardins’ AHL to NHL and SEL to NHL league equivalencies (an even bigger stretch here, I think), we have Omark putting up

    25 EV points in 41 games (50 EV points in 82 games) in the SEL

    30 EV points in 82 games in the NHL

    67 EV points in 82 games in the AHL, or .82 EV PTS per game.

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