Blue Money

When it comes to the Oiler blue, almost everyone is making a lot of money. Not quite seven of nine, probably 5 of 7 by the time Grebeshkov gets his new deal. Pat Quinn and Tom Renney must love a depth chart that features Sheldon Souray, Tom Gilbert, Lubomir Visnovsky, Denis Grebeshkov and Steve Staios. Youngsters Ladislav Smid, Theo Peckham and Taylor Chorney offer depth.

GM Steve Tambellini will be tempted to move one of those blueliners in an effort to shore up the group of forwards who’ll break camp in the fall. Should they sign Grebeshkov for around 3M per season it might be possible to offload one of Souray, Visnovsky or Gilbert in a deal involving a “first shot scorer” for left-wing.

Quinn and Renney will have to decide which of the top 4D gives them the best chance to succeed in hard matchups. According to Desjardins, Souray played the toughest opposition and did it with the least impressive help among the top 4D (I’m counting Souray, Lubo, Gilbert and Grebeshkov as the top 4 here). Staios should get a mention here for playing pretty tough opposition with the dregs around him.

Both Quinn and Renney have been able to succeed with a varied group of defenders (puck movers, stay at homes, chaos men, finesse types, knuckle draggers) during their NHL careers. The Oilers are known for their ability to find useful defensemen each summer, so this is the one area from which they can borrow.

It comes down to which defender gets dealt and at some level it doesn’t matter. To quote the pretty character in the photo above, pleasure is irrelevant. Winning is the only thing.

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40 Responses to "Blue Money"

  1. Mr DeBakey says:

    Reader’s Poll:

    Are those real?

  2. Jfry says:

    have their been equivalent summer trades for dmen that we can use to determine potential value of our men?

    the one that comes immediately to mind is the lubo trade last summer, but we’d be looking for 1 player in return i assume.

    people keep mentioning SJ and i keep loving clowe and mini joe.

  3. Jfry says:

    do gilbert and malone has similar value? if so, is kunitz enough for any of our dmen?

  4. Mr DeBakey says:

    SJ gets mentioned cuz Souray might waive his NTC to go there,
    plus
    Them chokers in SJ need a shake up.

    But SJ would have to return salary
    Marleau straight up, or
    Souray + Row-bear for Cheechoo + Erhoff
    - something like that.

    Frankly, after watching Viz, Grebs & Gilbert this season,
    I'd trade Souray & Staios for whatever I could get
    and bring in guys like Skrastins, Leopold & Popovic.

    I'm sold on the puck-moving defense faerie concept.

  5. B.C.B. says:

    DeBakey: real

    Jfry: Malone and might Gilbert might have similar value if not for Malone’s terrible contract. I would say any of the top four get you Kunitz: I would be shock to see Gilbert or Grebs go for anyone over 29.

  6. Gerta Rauss says:

    “Are those real?”

    Yes,and they’re spectacular…

    I missed the entire first season she appeared because i simply couldn’t stop staring at her….

  7. Unleaded says:

    Readers Poll Results:

    No one cares. They look wonderful, and seven of nine men would assimilate her seven days a week and twice on Sundays.

    The other two men suggested moving to 20 hour days to increase the number of times they could hit that in a week.

  8. Steve says:

    Is moving one of the top four essential? If we can unload, say, Staios, Moreau, and Nilsson, does that not give us sufficient cap room to address goaltending, a third line centre, and cheap replacements for those three?

    If we have to move one of the top four, I’m in that “Sell Souray high” camp. But I like what he brings when he’s healthy, and I don’t think it’s duplicated elsewhere on the roster. I’d rather keep him if keeping him is do-able.

  9. Lowetide says:

    Steve: I think you can move all of those guys, but you’re not going to get a scorer or goalie of great quality in return.

    If Tambellini is going to acquire quality he must give it up. Moreau, Staios, Nilsson are lesser-lights, and I honestly think the list for quality probably includes Souray, Gilbert and possibly Cogliano.

  10. Gerta Rauss says:

    “If Tambellini is going to acquire quality he must give it up. Moreau, Staios, Nilsson are lesser-lights, and I honestly think the list for quality probably includes Souray, Gilbert and possibly Cogliano”

    And there’s the rub…the folks mentioning Gilbert’s name(and I’m among them) don’t do so out of hate,or shortsightedness…the plain hard truth is that Staios,Moreau and the like get us nothing of value in return.

  11. kris says:

    LT:

    Agreed, but what about Penner and O’Sullivan? Any value?

  12. Lowetide says:

    Well they have healthy contracts. If you’re dealing O’Sullivan you’re going to get someone in return who is either a lesser player or an equal player with a similar salary.

    If we’re looking to get a big man in return for O’Sullivan (or a skill guy or a good starting G) the return wouldn’t be the same as a Cogliano or a Gilbert.

  13. bookie says:

    You know, everyone is suggesting trades to get bigger, that seems to be the difficult way of doing things.

    I say that with a solid Pizza and Bacon diet over the summer we can easily get guys like Cogliano, Hemmer, and Gagner overt the 225 mark.

  14. Chris! says:

    Sweet. Jesus.

  15. Traktor says:

    Maxim Lapierre
    Guillaume Latendresse
    Jaroslav Halak

    Visnovsky
    O’Sullivan
    Pouliot
    JDD

  16. Gerta Rauss says:

    @Kris

    I think Penner is damaged goods.The running feud with MacT last year has stained whatever perception people have/had of him.

    The only way to increase his value is to play him,hope that Quinn turns his career around,and he scores the 30/30 that people expected of him.

    And if he’s putting up 60 points a year,I find him a spot on my roster.

    Showing up in camp in shape will go a long way to starting the process.

  17. Jonathan Willis says:

    As long as Visnovsky’s here long-haul, I’m relatively happy.

  18. rickibear says:

    I'd trade Souray & Staios for whatever I could get

    Debakey: Can you name the 6 Dmen in the top 60 (first pairing)
    In all these categories:
    EVGA/60
    EVPTS/60
    EVG/60
    PKGA/60
    PPPTS/60
    PPG/60

    Chara
    Weidmen
    Blake
    Green
    Seidenberg
    Souray
    —————————–

    Maxim Lapierre
    Guillaume Latendresse
    Jaroslav Halak

    Visnovsky
    O’Sullivan
    Pouliot
    JDD
    Traktor:

    Can you name how many Defencemen were top 15 for points and top 15 EVGA for their season.

    The answer is one:
    Lubo

    I want more

  19. Traktor says:

    “As long as Visnovsky’s here long-haul, I’m relatively happy.”

    “Can you name how many Defencemen were top 15 for points and top 15 EVGA for their season.

    The answer is one:
    Lubo”

    Grebs and Gilbert both had better PP60 and PPON60 numbers.

    They make muchless money.

    Unlike Gilbert and Grebeshkov, Visnovsky doesn’t even play a regular role on PK units.

    When you look at the PPGAON60 numbers it becomes obvious why Visnovsky doesn’t play on the PK. He easily had the worst PPGAON60 numbers out of any defender.

    So we know that Grebs and Gilbert trump Visnovksy on special teams and make much less money so what about 5X5?

    Gilbert pts/60 – 1.30
    Grebs pts/60 – 1.23
    Visnovsky pts/60 – 0.93

    Grebs GF/GA differential – + 0.85
    Gilbert GF/GA differential – + 0.33
    Visnovsky GF/GA differential – + 0.71

    Gilbert faced the 2nd toughest QC
    Visnovsky faced the 3rd
    Grebs faced the 4th

    Visnovsky played with the best players
    Gilbert 2nd
    Grebs 3rd

    An argument could be made that Visnovsky is our best defender but the math above certainly doesn’t support it.

    Considering Visnovsky would bring the highest return and has the highest cap hit it should be fairly obvious he should be the guy that gets traded.

  20. Mr DeBakey says:

    This team should slide in just under the cap:

    Kotalik=Horcoff=Hemsky
    Jagr=Gagner=Cogliano
    Penner=Reinprecht=Pisani
    Jacques=Betts=Stortini
    Potulny, Lefebvre
    Grebeshkov=Visnovsky
    Smid=Gilbert
    Popovic=Souray
    Strudwick
    Lehtonen, Sanford

  21. PDO says:

    Just throwing shit off the wall:

    How far off is Gilbert + Cogliano for Hartnell + Coburn? Does the 10th OV added to that get the deal done?

    It’s a traditional trading partner, salary isn’t too far off, and it’s skill for slightly less skill, but more grit….

  22. Oilman says:

    Looks like it’s cold on them thar spaceships:o)

  23. Showerhead says:

    Truth be told, if the player is working out for you I think the optics of trading a guy you just signed long term or traded significant assets for don’t justify the trade. If ever there were a time to hold on to Souray/Visnovsky and get rid of Staios/Moreau/Nilsson this would be it. I don’t even care if you get warm bodies back – the $6.7M buys you your scoring winger and you maintain your strength in the top 4D.

  24. Showerhead says:

    PS – I’m going to say real, because I believe in what is right and what is pure :)

  25. Jon says:

    I think the best bet for the team is to keep the current top 4 and cut salary elsewhere.

    Salary dump: Staios, Nillson

    Trade bait: Cogs, Pouliot, JDD, prospects, picks

    Sign: Maholtra (2 mill or less), Zanon (1.5 mill) Vet Goalie 1-1.2

    Trade for: Clowe, Halak

    Penner Horc Hemmer
    Clowe Gagner O’sully
    Moreau Maholtra Pisani
    Jaques Brodz Storts

    Souray Zanon
    Vis Smid
    Gilbert Grebs
    Strudz/ Pec

    Halak
    Vet G

    That roster comes in under 56 million, keeps our current top 4, get’s bigger, and lacks any glaring holes. However, it sucks if we lose cogs but for Clowe, I think it might be worth it.

  26. geowal says:

    Honest unanswerable question:

    Is Lt’s statement: “The Oilers are known for their ability to find useful defensemen each summer, so this is the one area from which they can borrow.

    still valid with the departure of Charlie Huddy? I can’t recall when exactly he joined the staff, but it would seem fair to say he must have had a strong hand in turning some marginal looking defensement into good NHLers.

  27. Hemsky is a gangsta says:

    It all depends on what we get back but I think the Oilers would regret trading one of their top 4 defensemen at this point. Probably because at this point I envision them getting back someone like Malone or Hartnell and I think a year from now we’d be talking about how much we could use another top 4 defensemen who can provide some offense.

  28. Bruce says:

    Rickibear: Seidenberg? I get very different, and mediocre, numbers for him at BtN. What are you seeing that I’m missing?

  29. Steve says:

    And there’s the rub…the folks mentioning Gilbert’s name(and I’m among them) don’t do so out of hate,or shortsightedness…the plain hard truth is that Staios,Moreau and the like get us nothing of value in return.

    Oh, I’m well aware nobody’s going to give us anything good for those guys – I was thinking of them as straight-up salary dumps. Then you address the goaltending situation via free agency and replace those three guys from within. You might need to trade for the third line centre, but I don’t really see why we *need* to get much in the way of quality for Staios, Moreau, and/or Nilsson.

  30. Chris says:

    I’m more or less on the same page as Showerhead. There is some serious dead wood on this team that we can clear away to free up salary before we start sending out young useful parts like Cogliano and Gilbert. Nilson, Staois and Moreau can be had for a sack of pucks as far as I’m concerned. Nothing any of them brings can’t be easily replicated.

    If its me, the big ticket player I bring in is Tanguay. You should be able to get him for a reasonable price as he had an off year, say four to five millionish? Tanguay, Horcoff, Hemsky would provide you with an excellent power versus power line. I supose that scenario contemplates a trade of Penner to follow though. If you can pick up a few players like Marchant, Neil, Pahlson, Peca and Maholtra to add to the third line, we’d be able to run two solid defensive lines without breaking the bank. So the third line would essentially be Yet to be named vetrans 1 and 2 plus Ferando Pisani. You’re likely looking at 1-2 million a guy. O’Sullivan, Ganger and Cogliano should be able to handle the softs, with Brodziak and Sortini playing with one of Poultny and JF Jacques. I’d lean towards Poultny as I think a 38 goal AHL season warrants a shot in the bigs and god knows we could use some scoring.

    I’d look at signing Labarbara and Anderson as between the two of them I think you’ve got pretty solid goaltending. Defensively I’m okay with rolling with what we have. If I had to move one guy it would be Souray though. Simply because he’s fragile, I like Vishnosky slightly better and Gilbert and Grebeskov are possibly our first pairing three years from now. Smid and Peckham would potentially be a nice gritty third pairing.

  31. Coach pb9617 says:

    have their been equivalent summer trades for dmen that we can use to determine potential value of our men?

    This was a project I was working on, and damn near done with, when my hard drive crashed, taking my history with it. I’ve restarted it, but like many things – it’s much tougher to find the motivation to redo work.

    do gilbert and malone has similar value? if so, is kunitz enough for any of our dmen?

    Pittsburgh needs forwards, not defensemen.

  32. Mr DeBakey says:

    Malone is in St Petersburg.

    And I think Gilbert is too much for Malone

    O’Sullivan maybe

  33. Gerta Rauss says:

    @ Steve

    Perfectly reasonable sentiments.

    You and Chris are correct,we’ve got more bodies than places to put them.

    I’m on record here(more than once) that we need to look at what we’ve got with the new coach at the helm before we make any rash decisions.

    I’d be happy with our D in tact come training camp.

    My Gilbert trade suggestion had Bouwmeester coming our way,but it sounds like he’s headed to Calgary.

    It is an e4 after all….:)

  34. ian says:

    I think we should keep Souray.
    He has added all the things that the Oilers lacked as a team
    Size
    Leadership
    Goalscoring
    Toughness
    The best punches to knock out ratio in the league.
    We get all of the above in one player.Where do we find the 20+ goals if we trade him?

  35. Bruce says:

    If I had to move one guy it would be Souray though. Simply because he’s fragile, I like Vishnosky slightly better .

    Souray: 81 GP
    Visnovsky: 50 GP
    .
    We get all of the above in one player.Where do we find the 20+ goals if we trade him?

    Ian: So I keep asking. I can’t believe how many folks around here want to run Souray out of town.

    Put another way:

    Sheldon Souray 81 GP, 24:50 TOI/G
    23-30-53, +1, 98 PiM
    QualComp +.02

    Chris Pronger 82 GP, 26:56 TOI/G
    12-36-48,even, 88 PiM
    QualComp +.01

  36. ian says:

    Another reason to keep Souray is the argument that Renney and Quinn will be able to fix the power play??
    Souray could have a 50 goal season if the pp gets fixed.
    Last season:
    Tied for 1st in goals
    Tied for 1st in Game winners
    Tied for 1st in shorties
    Tied for 2nd in points
    MVP?

  37. Bruce says:

    Ian: As a “certified” member of the Goaltenders’ Union I should cast my vote for Roli, but among the skaters it’s hard to argue otherwise.

    Ian: You didn’t (directly) mention first in PPG, where he led the team by a wide margin with 12 (Horcoff, 8). I seem to recall a few of those PPGs breaking third period ties and standing up as the game winner.

    Sheldon’s 23 goals matched the total goals scored by all the other defencemen combined (Visnovsky 8, Grebeshkov 7, Gilbert 5, Staios 2, Strudwick 1 (plus 1 as a forward), Smid, Peckham and Chorney all 0).

    I’m very happy to keep our top four intact. It was one aspect of the team that was visibly better than average last year, right up to the moment Vis went down. No need to mess with it.

    As a foursome, one of these things is not like the others. Visnovsky, Grebeshkov, and Gilbert are slick skaters and puck-movers, but Souray is a shooter, a cycle breaker, a strongman, and a necessary balancing force.

    If, however, somebody like Bouwmeester does come, he surely replaces one of the puck movers.

  38. Chris says:

    I’m pretty sure the logic of the trade Souray notion is that Souray is usually more banged up than he was last year and his numbers aren’t consistently this good. Sell high and get as much value for him as you can.

  39. Bruce says:

    Chris: I understand the rationale. It doesn’t exactly fit the facts, is all.

    Other than his first year in Edmonton, Souray has missed just 9 games total since the lockout. He’s played 81 GP in two of the last three years, posting big numbers both times.

    By comparison Visnovsky has missed 10 or more games in 5 of his 8 NHL seasons, failing to hit the 60 GP mark in 3 of his last 6. When it comes to injuries, it would seem Lubo is at least as vulnerable as Sheldon. Yet Souray is the one who is branded “injury-prone”. Why?

  40. Tweezer So Cold says:

    She's the Kingmaker for Obama! Can't blame the husband, though.

    Let's see, Souray had better numbers than CFP last year, and will honour his contract. he will also trash people like Laraque used to.

    Blogosphere: Trade high!

    C'mon people, Detroit didn't establish Russian and Swedish farm systems and a program of excellence by running the oldies out of town.

    I think Souray is rounding into his best years, and will become smarter surrounded by the young offensive talent, ie. save himself from silly injuries that players like Moreau expose themsleves to.

    Keep the depth! Dump the deadweight salaries, let the kids play, sign one faceoff guy and some goalies, and let them go!

    Quinn will get a 30 goal season from Penner, and maybe another from Souray also.

    At some point, we have to stop turning over 10 guys a season. All good teams tinker, but you can't buy a winner (one exception: the Edmonton Rangers of 1994)

    It's fun to be positive, especially when our coaching staff has finally been established as NHL worthy (still don't get Bucky>Chuddy)

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