Oilers at Blues, G51/08-09

That’s Red Berenson wearing the “C” for St. Louis. Long before he became a legend as a college coach, Berenson was the only really good hockey player in the Western Division. The 6 expansion teams had a few good goalies, some tough dmen with crooked noses, and more than their share of 6′s and 7′s up front who checked like hell and manned their wings.

But Berenson could do things with the puck and because of it he stood out. When the NHL expanded in 1967, the 6 new clubs didn’t have access to the best young amateurs who had already been gobbled up by the original 6. Bobby Orr would have been eligible for the 1968 draft under the rules of the time, but of course he was already an NHL star. Brad Park was already in New York, and Guy Lapointe had been protected by Montreal under the old “sponsorship” program. Adding to the problem was that teams like St. Louis and Minnesota traded all of their high draft picks 1969+ so that when sponsorship ended the original 6 (Montreal especially) could grab the cream of the crop long before the expansion teams hit the podium.

So Red Berenson was it. And he was very, very good.

The current Blues aren’t very interesting. They seem to be moving in the right direction, but it’s hard to tell and it is certainly not a straight line build ala the New York Islanders of the early 1970s. St. Louis takes one step forward and another one back and this season has been very frustrating because some of their very best kids are injured.

Having said that, there’s a lot of young talent. This Oshie fellow looks like he’s got it going on and Berglund and Backes are solid. It’ll be interesting to see how the former Leafs are doing in the town that gave us Chuck Berry. Brad Boyes is also fun to watch.

The opponents for St. Louis tonight are the Edmonton Oilers, a team in the NHL.

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303 Responses to "Oilers at Blues, G51/08-09"

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  1. Scarlett says:

    Sam??? You had a breakaway but stop for a 2-1?? No no no!

  2. mc79hockey says:

    Ah, it’s MacT’s patented magic again as the Oilers head to their fifth shootout of the year. The man knows how to game the system!

  3. Phil says:

    Ref to Roloson: “No punching the shooter, ok?”

  4. oilerdago says:

    godot: you extend Cole because he draws penalties, takes the body and can score (although granted he hasn’t done the latter this season).

    But it would not shock me if he were moved before trade deadline if the team falls further behind in the race. You can’t risk losing him for nothing.

  5. Phil says:

    Nice speed coming in there for Nilsson

  6. Jonathan Willis says:

    Nilsson scores – I feel a 3-2 record in shootouts coming up!

  7. Temujin says:

    Seems like going wide is especially effective in a shootout.

  8. gerald78 says:

    not only did he pass up the breakaway, he set up a 2 on 1 where everybody in the building knew he was going to pass, and cole drifted back so his weak shot was from around the faceoff circle. not very well executed by either of them

  9. mc79hockey says:

    Nice goal Nilsson.

    “They’re only 2-2…they’ve only had four shootouts this year” is hands down the dumbest fucking thing I’ve heard for a while.

  10. Phil says:

    Hope he doesn’ wait for cole here.

  11. Scarlett says:

    Redemption Sammy!!!!

  12. Bank Shot says:

    Cue the six game winning streak. ;p

  13. mc79hockey says:

    That’s a ridiculous camera angle they were using for the Oilers shots. Nice goal for Gagner…it’s like last year’s move but speeded up.

  14. Temujin says:

    Well that’s unfortunate.

    The Oilers snatch victory after nearly snatching defeat from the jaws of… errr, victory.

  15. oilerdago says:

    Atta boy Sammy!

  16. Jonathan Willis says:

    On the St. Louis feed they said that Pete Peeters really likes that move Nilsson pulled because he feels it gives the player more of an angle to shoot at.

  17. Bank Shot says:

    not very well executed by either of them

    Oilers don’t score on odd man rushes. Just learn to accept it.

  18. oilerdago says:

    Stauffer said Horc & Gilbert have "lower body injuries".

    I remember Horc getting tied up with Tkazuck but I still don't remember seeing Gilbert get hurt.

  19. godot10 says:

    //you extend Cole because he draws penalties, takes the body and can score (although granted he hasn’t done the latter this season).//

    Pisani is a better player. Cole has poor hockey sense, is far too individualistic, and is a hard player to find linemates for. And the Oilers have Brule and Eberle coming on the right side.

    I don’t dislike Cole. I just don’t think he adds a whole lot. And the Oilers just don’t have the money for him.

  20. speeds says:

    JW: re: Oshie:

    I remember hearing or reading somewhere that he was the guy EDM had planned to take in the 2005 draft, but STL took him at 24 OV, 1 spot before EDM picked (where they ended up taking Cogliano).

  21. Dennis says:

    Scoring chances are up:

    http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=3056

    A tease: the 18-13-85 was actually a pretty good idea.

  22. knighttown says:

    Did they just say the three shooters were Nilsson, Gagner and…Reddox? That would have been oh, controversial if Liam had found crest wouldn’t it?

    Although saying that, for the first time in a long time the Oilers won in spite of Ales Hemsky so I can see not going with him. Man was he bad and frankly I wasn’t crazy about his try either.

    Still loving the comment from the original LT post tho about St. Louis playing the Edmonton Oilers, a team in the NHL.

  23. Bank Shot says:

    You only get Cole on an overpay anyway. UFAs won’t sign fair market contracts to play in Edmonton until Edmonton starts to win. There aren’t any other worthwile sell points for the city besides winning.

  24. RiversQ says:

    JW: Nope, it was someone else. Anyway decent win considering the body count.

  25. Scott says:

    You know there have been some questions about Roli for the last few games, although not tonight, but I think it’s worth pointing out that his save percentage since the All-Star Break is .930. Goaltending is a weird position to judge with the eye.

  26. Dennis says:

    Some decent help from the OOTSB as well: losses from Dallas and Anaheim.

    We can keep on hoping until the cold light of Monday morning!

  27. oilerdago says:

    Bank Shot: you are right about Cole – you only get him back on an overpay. Again, another reason to trade him before he walks for nothing.

    Godot: I love Pisani (another dago!) but, Cole has proven himself as a scorer in the past – something he’s not done this season.

    I will give him credit for at least being better defensively of late. But they are (should be) 2 different players.

  28. Schitzo says:

    Reddox in the shootout? God I wish we could have seen that.

  29. knighttown says:

    Yeah Speeds, that’s accurate. I think he was pegged in the early second and St. Louis surprised many by snatching him up. I was upset at first but Bobby Mac said his son played with Cogs and that the Oilers had a good one and all was well.

    Speaking of draft nuances, one thing from the ’08 draft that I don’t recall ever being discussed was the odd move Washington made to leap frog Edmonton to draft Anton Gustafsson, Bengt’s young fella. All “leaks” and mocks showed the Oilers drafting Eberle and that’s who they got but there is no other explanation for the Caps move other than them being convinced the Oilers were going for the Sweede. Any body ever solve this mystery and how is that guy doing? (Not the guy that solved the mystery…young Anton).

  30. HBomb says:

    Reddox over Hemsky in the shootout?

    On Liam’s best night and Ales’ worse….that sort of a decision would have been an absolute travesty.

  31. Dennis says:

    Here’s the real link for the chances for/against:

    http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=3057

    Speaking of the draft, I was looking around today only to discover that Potulny was drafted by the Flyers with the pick they acquired from the Oil in exchange for Jiri Dopita.

    It’s funny that no one in the MSM mentioned that but I guess they were too busy training to get ready to step into the octagon!

  32. knighttown says:

    Apparently Huddy just said it was Hemsky and not Reddox going third. Kevin Quinn just can’t tell the difference between a 3 and a 5.

    Fuck Kevin, that’s the type of mistake that causes World Wars.

  33. Lord Bob says:

    Just getting home after an eleven-hour shift while day-to-day with flu-like symptoms and I learn that Vishnovsky is out for the season.

    Not even a shootout win over the mighty St. Louis Blues can dampen that sort of depression!

  34. Scott says:

    Any body ever solve this mystery and how is that guy doing? (Not the guy that solved the mystery…young Anton).

    I don’t know about Washington’s choice at all, but I believe Gustaffson is playing in the second best league in Sweden which isn’t exactly a ringing endorsement. I’m pretty sure he didn’t make Team Sweden at the juniors either.

  35. Bruce says:

    Well it was a good battle by a short-staffed crew, 2 points is 2 points, 15th place opponent or not. But that could be lipstick on a pig if either one of those injuries is any sort of long-term, let alone both.

    Given that Oil traded for Visnovsky a day before his 5-year, $28 MM pact kicked in, their three biggest off-season contract extensions were Visnovsky, Gilbert and Horcoff, for a cool $85 MM total. All three have gone down in the last 72 hours.

    Must be fun being an owner, eh Daryl?

  36. Dennis says:

    71′s gone for the season???

    Really???

  37. Bruce says:

    Last I heard is he has an MRI tomorrow. But it doesn’t feel good.

  38. Bank Shot says:

    Speaking of the draft, I was looking around today only to discover that Potulny was drafted by the Flyers with the pick they acquired from the Oil in exchange for Jiri Dopita.

    That is only half the story. The Oilers drafted Danny Syvret with a pick aquired in the Comrie to Philly trade.

  39. knighttown says:

    In an attempt to give credit where credit is due, Row-bert was pretty damn good tonight and Steady Steve was excellent. Two guys that get the gears around here (and well deserved) but they played well.

    This team is full of guys that at this stage in their careers whether due to youth (Gagner), size (Nilsson, Reddox), talent level (Reddox) or advance age (Moreau, Staois) can fare pretty well against the Mike Weavers of the world but really, really struggle against Robyn Regehr or Pavel Datsyuk. There’s no shame in that I suppose, but it makes this team a little easier to predict than some others.

    There are two types of number 8 seeds out there:

    1. 2006 Oilers that no one wanted anything to do with.

    2. 2007 NYI that picked up Ryan Smyth that were never going to be anything more than first round fodder.

    I think this version of the Edmonton Oilers is built for the regular season, as scary as that is and should not, under any circumstance, trade anyone from the core in order to “go for it” this year.

  40. Lowetide says:

    AND Kennedy was shot in a Lincoln while Lincoln was shot while swearing at a Kennedy!

  41. Coach pb9617 says:

    Seems like going wide is especially effective in a shootout.

    Indeed. It gives the shooter more angles, holes and room to work, but it limits the wrister to stick side. Only guys with big reach can take a guy head on and have all of the options available to him.

  42. LittleFury says:

    Last I heard is he has an MRI tomorrow. But it doesn’t feel good

    Yup. With the Oilers’ medical staff on the job, the final word will be “Lubomir Visnovsky: dead.”

  43. Jonathan Willis says:

    Littlefury: Don’t the Oilers medical staff usually clear folks to play, and then we discover later that they shouldn’t have?

    In which case the final word will be “Visnovsky: Back to play game 82, career ending re-injury suffered.”

  44. Scott says:

    More on Gustaffson!

    5-4-9 (and +11 -5) in 22 games for Bofors IK along with a back injury, knee ligament injury and broken finger. Sounds like a very tough year.

  45. Lowetide says:

    Apparently Lubo is going to be fine. Here’s some video of his work today:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcFSOnumgZA

  46. Jonathan Willis says:

    Did you know that the Oilers traded the 14th overall pick in 2002 to Montral for the 15th overall pick and the 245th overall pick?

    Can’t seem to remember the names of those guys, though…

  47. Jonathan Willis says:

    It never gets old…

  48. Scott says:

    To be fair, Tomas Micka may yet pan out.

    Also, I didn’t know Parise and Pouliot were drafted in both 2002 and 2003. Now I know why everyone’s so upset about that.

  49. Bruce says:

    Jonathan: the worst part of that was that Niinimaki came from so far off the board they probably coulda got him with that #245 pick.

  50. Lowetide says:

    Niinimaki was 50E, which would put him in the late third or early 4th round.

  51. Lord Bob says:

    My theory is that Kevin Lowe was four sheets to the wind on draft day and thought that he was drafting Antero Niittymaki somehow.

  52. Lowetide says:

    Niinimaki’s height (6.02) was the selling point but he couldn’t put on weight and of course he had an injury early on.

  53. Lord Bob says:

    (That theory dovetails nicely with my “Kevin Lowe went to university with HBomb” theory.)

  54. Jonathan Willis says:

    I should have specified; I meant that the Mandelbaum thing never gets old.

    As for Niinimaki, based on watching him play I think he could help the team – and we could always use more Finns.

  55. Coach pb9617 says:

    MacT just said on 630 and I quote “… we all know he (Penner) is the best fit there (1st line) we all agree…”

    Do you think that his business card reads

    Craig MacTavish
    Nose Removal Specialist

    -or-

    Craig MacTavish
    Face Spiting Specialist

  56. Jonathan Willis says:

    Speaking of which: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GPQBH0g-XqQ&feature=related

    That's as excited as I've ever seen someone over a 2-2 goal.

  57. Coach pb9617 says:

    Jonathan, you link like an MSM writer.

  58. Jonathan Willis says:

    In fairness to me, I did it write the first time.

  59. Jonathan Willis says:

    I just confused “right” and “write”.

    Clearly, I need to sleep.

  60. HBomb says:

    That theory dovetails nicely with my “Kevin Lowe went to university with HBomb” theory.

    That guy might have been tough on the ice, but no chance he could hang with me in the drinking department.

    Cocaine, however, he’d likely kick my ass.

  61. Lord Bob says:

    Holy crap, Jonathan! Between Niinimaki and Schremp, we could have had two-thirds of our “first round busts who have amazing hops in the shootout” line covered! I can’t believe we blew that opportunity!

  62. Jonathan Willis says:

    LB: And with MacTavish’s ability to get this team into the shootout, we’d could ice MacIntyre – Niinimaki – Schremp as a 4th line and win every game in extra time!

  63. Jonathan Willis says:

    Lord Bob: I’ve found the Holy Grail – the ultimate third member of that line.

  64. quain says:

    It must be fun to be Brad Boyes. You’ve scored 22 goals, but you’re also -22. Every goal you’ve scored has been matched and then matched again by the opponent.

  65. Garnet says:

    To quote a completely forgotten old episode of Saturday Night Live, “The Nays have it. He lives. But the vote shouldn’t have been that close.”

    That was the Mr. Belvedere Fan Club, voting on whether to assassinate Mr. Belvedere, in the unlikely event someone was asking.

  66. CM says:

    I know this may be old news but does anyone think Jussi Jokinen might be of some help to the oilers…Tbay put him on waivers

  67. Griffy aka J says:

    Hasn’t he cleared waivers?

  68. Jonathan Willis says:

    LT: Mark Seidel has his first-round mock draft up. Thought you might be interested.

    Everyone: Jokinen’s already cleared waivers once.

  69. HBomb says:

    Well, all the mouth-breathers on the fan-boards seem to think that Horcoff’s absence will help the team, that Brodziak will easily be able to step in his spot, etc.

    Dummies. If 10′s out for any period of time, this team is supremely fucked six ways from Sunday.

  70. Lord Bob says:

    I dunno, HBomb. Remember how well we did when Hemsky was hurt. This team seems to thrive on injuries to its only good players: crack Souray in the back of the knee with a tire iron and we’ll probably win the Cup.

  71. doritogrande says:

    LT: Mark Seidel has his first-round mock draft up. Thought you might be interested.

    I find it interesting that he’s got this John Moore guy as our first rounder, whereas another site has him pegged for our third-rounder (http://nhldraftsite.com/)

    I think someone’s not valuing him as highly as he should be…

    If we’re picking around 14th, I’d love a bigger forward with some finish like Kassian or Panik. But that’s just me.

  72. oilerdago says:

    DG: I’d like to see if we can move up a couple of slots and get a legit scorer. It may be that we got one with Eberle but if you look throughout the Oilers system that is a big weakness right now.

    Deal from strength (real or perceived) and get the best person available when it’s your turn. But if you can move up and use the draft to solve a long-term issue.

  73. quain says:

    Random numbers:

    Edmonton has the fourth best points/road game record in the WC this season.

    Edmonton has the second worst points/home game record in the WC this season… beating Vancouver by 0.0015.

    This team annoys me.

  74. doritogrande says:

    Oilerdago:

    Given our position in the standings right now, it’ll take a pretty good package to move up enough to grab that elite scorer you’re looking for. I assume you mean someone along the likes of Kane, the Swede who’s name I won’t even attempt to not butcher, or Schroeder, all of whom I expect gone by the 8th overall pick.

    I think we can still get some great talent where we stand right now. Scott Glennie is going to make one NHL team very happy with his talents. He likely won’t be a 30-40 goal man mind you, but he’d be worth a later round selection. Problem is, he’s sort of on the small size, like most of the better scorers. I’m looking for a complimentary player who can provide secondary scoring for our smaller top-6ers. that’s why I’m looking at guys like the 6’3″ Kassian or the 6’2″ Panik. Guys probably good for 20-25 goals but create room for Gagner and Eberle to do their thing.

    However, given our lack of defensive prospects in the junior ranks once Plante graduates this summer, maybe we should be looking at the aforementioned Moore as a legitimate option. Just say no to Ryan Ellis though. Kid’s in MAB territory.

  75. HBomb says:

    I dunno, HBomb. Remember how well we did when Hemsky was hurt. This team seems to thrive on injuries to its only good players: crack Souray in the back of the knee with a tire iron and we’ll probably win the Cup.

    This team has the depth to withstand maybe one injury on defense. Center? Losing Horcoff with no other veteran option is way up there on the worst case scenario list.

    If Visnovsky and Horcoff are both out significant time simultaneously, forget the playoffs.

  76. Bruce says:

    Just watching now the chunk of the first period I missed. A couple things:

    1) Kyle Brodziak had himself a night, didn’t he? Started on the fourth line, fed Reddox (third line) for the best opportunity of the first period, assisted with Nilsson (second line) on the Souray goal in the second, then ended the night on the first line. Amongst all that, made a goal-saving defensive play when doing double duty on own zone faceoffs, then took a roughing penalty going to bat for Roli in the scrummage that ensued. Great sequence, cheap penalty. Despite his own time in the box, Brodz contributed 3:28, second among forwards, to a PK unit that was critical to the night’s success, and 19:32 overall. Had a shot, a hit, a blocked shot, and went 11-6, 65% in the faceoff circle.

    In my books that is nothing short of a Great game. Kudos to Kyle.

    2) Zack Stortini held his own and then some in a very spirited scrap with Blues irritant Cam Janssen. Apparently that’s a personal rivalry that dates back to junior, but was reignited last night when Janssen took some liberties with Ladi Smid early in the game. I didn’t see it as “heavyweights by appointment only” but in the ongoing flow of the game, and of the play in which the throw-down occurred. What ensued was anything but a hugfest, as both guys threw some bombs. Zorg appeared to have sustained a bruised fist in the exchange. Hope that’s nothing serious, we got enough shit happening in the injury dept. right now.

  77. geowal says:

    Do the Oilers website folks read this blog? Note the poll on their website today:

    What Type of Player should the Oilers try and add before the trade deadline?

    Lamp-lighting sniper: 73.50 %
    Stay-at-home defenceman: 6.44 %Faceoff specialist: 15.99 % Nothing… it’s all good!: 4.07 %

    At least they are not entertaining aquiring a small pass-first forward…

  78. Jonathan Willis says:

    DG: Who does that site? Because as interesting as their suggestion of Tomas Vincour for first round pick is, I very, very much doubt it happens.

    Most places seem to have him falling into 2nd-3rd round territory.

  79. Bruce says:

    Just had a few looks at the play where Horc got hurt. Penner chipped a high clearing pass that Hemsky took down with his glove while breaking through the neutral zone. Horcoff jumped into the rush which was briefly a 2-on-1. Hemsky didn’t make the early pass, instead curling to his right while Horcoff continued to charge the crease. Just as he slammed on the brakes Keith Tkachuk caught him from behind and pushed him, and perhaps something gave right then. (Doogie?) Hemsky’s shot hit Horcoff on the back of the right leg, then Tkachuk took Horcoff down on the continuation, with a little bit of a scissors grip, so something might have happened then. A little bit dirty maybe, but mostly just a hockey play. Louie DeBrusk immediately commented on Horc going off gingerly on his left leg (not the one that got hit by the puck).

    He did return for two shifts late in the period and skated his bag off on the PK in pretty much his usual fashion. I remember noting at the time he looked winded at the end of his last shift, a long (67 seconds) and hard effort 4v5 in the defensive zone, but it seems likely it was more than that.

    Anybody who says this team will be better off without him is an idiot. If Brodziak moves up, which may indeed be a worthwhile option, the first and fourth lines will be less than they were. It’s kind of a chain reaction, in a similar manner to how all three defensive pairings suffered in the absence of Visnovsky, with all three right defencemen moving up the depth chart. Even that didn’t last half the game before Gilbert went out … and just like that, the organization’s shortage of NHL-ready defencemen is exposed.

    Holding my breath on injury news today, inc. Lubo’s MRI where I am frankly expecting the worst. Any more bad news, though, and the season hangs in the balance.

  80. doritogrande says:

    Wreckum's been recalled.

    http://oilers.nhl.com/team/app/?service=page&page=NewsPage&articleid=408092

    Also, in the same sentence, Potulny assigned to Springfield.

    And the man-child himself, JF Jacques has been activated, assigned to Springfield for his conditioning stint.

    Still no word on Visnovsky. That's not really good news.

  81. shepso says:

    any idea why Potulny’s been sent down? I mean the guy is technically a center, right? and if Horc is down for any length of time, even if it’s a game or two, are we really going to ice Bropensky, 12-89-26, 18-13-85, 46-78-Smac? The only logical explanation is that 21′s time under the 10 game/30 day rule between waivers is up. Good to recall Wreckham, but why are we not using some kind of emeregency injury recall to deal with the potential no Horc situation. Peckham’s arrival means that Gibby is on the shelf for a game or two, but if Horc isn’t as bad, why even list him on the injury report and not bring in/keep a replacement? Sometimes Lowebellini’s collective decision making is really confusing, and by sometimes, I mean constantly…

  82. Traktor says:

    “… and just like that, the organization’s shortage of NHL-ready defencemen is exposed.”

    How many teams really have more than 7 guys that can play a regular shift? It’s tough to keep 8 defenders on the roster and if you want to send a decent player down the the AHL he’ll probably get claimed.

    Roy as #8 and Peckham as #9 is probably as good as most teams depth – although somehow Roy turned into shit in a matter of months.

    Good call on Brodziak as well. Hopefully MacT will wake up and give him the 3C job.

  83. Bruce says:

    Traktor: Yeah I might have expanded on that comment to say that there are few teams that could withstand losing two Top Four types (except the comment was expansive enough already!). Oilers may be worse off than most in that their #7 guy has played better as a forward, their #8 guy (Peckham in my view, and apparently theirs) has 2 GP of NHL experience, and the #9 guy has fallen through a trap door. While there’s a handful of guys who might be a player in a year or three, there’s nary an Allan Rourke to be seen.

  84. Bruce says:

    any idea why Potulny’s been sent down?

    To make room for Peckham. JFJ was activated to the 23-man roster when Visnovsky went on IR, and I understand he will remain on the roster during his conditioning stint (as JDD was earlier). With Horcoff and Gilbert both listed as day-to-day (whew!), they need 20 healthy bodies in the form of an NHL roster, meaning 12 forwards and 6 D. Peckham is ready to step in for Gilbert and Pouliot for Horcoff, meaning those guys can miss one or two games without going onto IR (which is a one-week minimum as I understand it). Potulny’s own spot can be filled by MacIntyre.

    As long as he remains under those 10-game and 30-day thresholds, Potulny will be the guy on the yo-yo. I would be surprised if the numbers game hadn’t been thoroughly explained to him and possibly some assurances made as to how things will shake down when 10 and 77 either return to the line-up or, heaven forbid, get assigned to IR. The additional complication that is JFJ will come up in a fortnight.

    Great timing for the schedule maker to feed us not just another 3-games-in-4 days stint, but 3 games within about 66 hours, pretty much the minimum possible under the CBA.

    My strategy would be to rest 10 and 77 in Detroit almost no matter what, give JDD the start, and come back with Roli and whoever is healthy enough to go in Minny on Sunday. It would not surprise me in the least, however, if MacT went with Roli in both games.

  85. namflashback says:

    and Bruce . . . had 10 on a bum leg AND 77 with a bad back.

    Both games are important, but that NW game is a must win.

  86. shepso says:

    @ Bruce: Just what I feared, JFJ on the active roster. I ranted about that on my own blog some time ago and still feel somewhat weary of giving up a roster spot to a guy who has proved to be ineffective in every stint with the Oil and still given a one-way deal in the off season. Sure he’s got size and grit, but as much as I have harped on Moreau all year, I would still rather have him then JFJ to do the same thing. If JFJ returns, what of Smac? He becomes as useful as tits on a boar, to which he is only marginally more useful at this point. Huggybear, (yes, I still refuse the Zorg label), has moved past JFJ on the depth chart for the energy tough guy role. I don’t see why the team is hanging on to him. Where does he fit short term or long term? The guy has no hands. Unless he is trade bait, why keep him active?

  87. Bruce says:

    Both games are important, but that NW game is a must win.

    More to the point, @ Detroit could very well be a “can’t win”. The Wings just broke out of a dry spell and are not going to be inclined to let a limping and clearly inferior opponent off the hook. How good Oilers play may not matter a whole lot. I expect an honest effort but most probably in a losing cause. So expending aching skaters and aging goalies in the cause is probably not in the best interests of the club. Sometimes guys need to rest.

    Just what I feared, JFJ on the active roster.

    He’s there for now, Shepso. It may very well be in two weeks time the Oil decide he’s not ready and test waivers on him. If OTOH they decide he is ready and they think he can help, almost certainly that will be the end of the line for MacIntyre.

  88. Jonathan Willis says:

    Bruce: Does JFJ fall under the “pure enforcer” umbrella, or is he more of a threat to Stortini?

    Personally, I expect he’ll play in the AHL this season, but of the two I’d think Stortini is in more danger.

  89. Dennis says:

    I’m with you on how to proceed with the injuries to 10-77 and Sunday afternoon’s game in Minny looming large.

    Det’s been scuffling a little lately but I’d still rest the boys and put in JDD for Roli and just say “fuck it” when it comes to tomorrow afternoon.

    JFJ: His presence on the ’09 club – outside of how quick it takes him getting back to game-form – depends on how much the Oilers like 33 and 85.

    Let’s say everyone’s still healthy when 34 comes back and the latest has Pisani perhaps making the next road trip which begins in eight days time next Sat in LA.

    So:

    27-10-83
    12-89-26
    18-13-34
    78-51-46

    Let’s say that Brule’s staying in SF because of the waiver rule and he’s only coming up if we incur a major injury and he’s up for good. We’ll also say that Schremp never again sees the light of day as an Oiler.

    So, that leaves 21-33-85 and perhaps JFJ as the 13-14 forwards; assuming the Oilers would carry 14 forwards.

    21: there’s a waiver issue with him too, right? Still, MacT seems to like the guy and it’s either him or the next guy as the utility fellow.

    85: he’s my candidate for the 13th forward and I don’t think the Oilers would have both 21 and 85 in the pressbox; they’d save the other spot for some muscle so that means 33 or JFJ as the 14th guy.

    So, you get into issues like whether 33 would get claimed if we tried to farm him plus we have a two-way option on JFJ so we have some leverage in his case.

    BTW, check out the MacT audio clip from today for a bit about 78. To paraphrase, MacT “doesn’t love him as a centre.” Not sure how he formed his opinion but I guess that’s why he was never really considered for the secondary tough min role which has been given to 13 for the longest time now.

    On 12: This year his PPG is .44 and last year it was .58 so he’s not that far off. But we need him to at least equal last year’s rate and more to the point we need him to surpass it.

  90. doritogrande says:

    Personally, I expect he’ll play in the AHL this season, but of the two I’d think Stortini is in more danger.

    This may just be me, but I’ve seen a change in Stortini’s fighting habits this year. He’s throwing punches, he’s hugging less and he’s holding his own with some real tough customers. I don’t think this team needs MacIntyre anymore, especially if JFJ comes back smashing bodies and taking numbers.

    I think having two middling pests who can chuck knuckles reasonably well is better than the supposed “nuclear” threat that is 33. His fight the other week with Boogard certainly left me wanting more, and probably thinking a fight with Stortini would have, if nothing else, at least been more entertaining. Having a fourth line with both Stortini and JFJ might not actually be a bad thing for this team. One guy takes the tough guy on, taking him off the ice for 5. Then the other can feast on the top-6ers without fear of the policeman.

  91. doritogrande says:

    Odd…the AHL gamesheet for tonight’s Falcons game misspelled Dubnyk’s name, really badly.

    http://stats.theahl.com/stats/official-game-report.php?game_id=1005491

  92. Dennis says:

    This is LT’s area but I still can’t figure out JFJ.

    Fuck, in his second season in the AHL he was almost a PPG!

    http://hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=61451

    There is such a guy who can’t hit big league curveballs but the guy can’t even get a fucking hit, let alone knock one out of the park.

    I just don’t know.

  93. doritogrande says:

    Continuing on in prospect news, cue the dramatic fall down the first round for Jared Cowan: http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=408119

    Poor bastard threw out ligaments in his knee. He’s done for the season.

  94. Bruce says:

    I think having two middling pests who can chuck knuckles reasonably well is better than the supposed “nuclear” threat that is 33.

    I’m with DG on this, if you have both of Zorg and JFJ, then MacIntyre becomes redundant. This is dependent, first and foremost, on JFJ bringing more as an on-ice player than SMac does. I think he can. We already know that Stortini can. Two guys who can both play a little and chuck ‘em a little are adequate protection for the vast majority of situations.

    Besides, the true nuclear deterrent on this team is Sheldon Souray. If Sheldon were to assume the unoffical role as chief enforcement officer of the Protection of Ales League (PAL), that would suit me just fine. Special occasions only, like when the Regehrs and Tootoos of the world cross the line. Souray’s not quite Chara, but he’s the closest thing we got.

  95. shepso says:

    @ Dennis. If JFJ had a two-way option, I wouldn’t even come close to caring, except he doesn’t. It’s a one way deal. I’ve been pissed off about this piss poor decision for a while. I agree that Smac is the guy that draws the short straw, which is too bad, cuz I kinda like the big lug, but he does become something of a redundancy. Obviously 85 seems to be the go to auxiliary winger/13th guy based on how versatile MacT thinks he is, but in terms of what JFJ does, after this much time playing between the farm and the bigs without really proving his worth, why bother? This one-way deal is more a handcuff then a help.

  96. doritogrande says:

    shepso:

    I can’t find it anywhere, but I’m 99% certain that the contract on JF Jacques is for two-way this year, and one-way next year.

    Someone please correct me if I’m wrong on this.

  97. Lowetide says:

    That’s right, Dorito.

    http://lowetide.blogspot.com/2008/07/oilers-sign-pouliot-jacques.html

    From that post:

    Jacques’ contract is even more unique. It’s also a two-year deal, the first year is a two-way contract and the second season is a one-way deal. When the Oilers send Jacques out (he’s got back problems) a team plucking him off waivers would have to honor that second season at NHL dollars no matter where Jacques plays. It’s a clever ploy and suggests that the Oilers do have some worry about losing a quality (if flawed) prospect to the waiver wire.

  98. shepso says:

    Neat. Thanks DG and LT. I still don’t like it, but would rather see him spend the rest of the year on the farm getting in shape then take away a spot from someone like Potulny or Reddox, to be honest. At the moment they both possess more upside. Pots may actually turn into a sniper, and LT, we both agree that Reddox has lots of good even though he can’t bury clear cut breakaways…

  99. Schitzo says:

    Neat. Thanks DG and LT. I still don’t like it, but would rather see him spend the rest of the year on the farm getting in shape then take away a spot from someone like Potulny or Reddox, to be honest

    You appear to be confusing a two-way deal with being free from waivers. That’s not the case. Jacques will require waivers to go down, which the organization may not be willing to risk.

  100. shepso says:

    @ Schitzo: well, I like it even less than before if that is the case. Weak.

  101. Bank Shot says:

    Two guys who can both play a little and chuck ‘em a little are adequate protection for the vast majority of situations.

    Edmonton has played St.Louis three times this season. Two of them were very chippy affairs. The one MacIntyre played in was very quiet.

    Smid got the sole roughing penalty in that game. Cam Janssen was nowhere to be seen.

    MacIntyre can’t play hockey, but he sure seems like a very intimidating presence in the game. Stortini and Jacques aren’t.

  102. Bruce says:

    BS: The Oilers won all three games. So what’s your point?

    The quiet game (the one here) was by far the most boring of the three, for that matter. The two games in St. Loo were fun to watch, MacIntyre or no McIntyre.

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