Every generation has a few men and women who see things a different way. It’s the little extra thing that made Bob Dylan unique and Phil Ochs just another guy, the quality that allows the Coens to make stirring films while garbage comes from every other kid who bought a Vivitar Super 8.
For NHL general managers the current gold standard is Ken Holland. Unlike the current Stanley winners–who spent a generation slumming it with the idea that collecting gems would be worth it–Holland and his men use the draft to acquire skinny kids who might become the next Datsyuk or Zetterberg.
The Edmonton Oilers have a rich and interesting past but a blah present and a unsure future. Their actions look as young as the new owner’s time on the job, and their inaction this summer feels wrong, wrong, wrong.
I wonder why Steve Tambellini doesn’t take a chance and try for glory. By that I mean think outside the box, project Tesla, speed down Highway 61, kick out the jams.
What might this look like? I don’t know, I’m not Tesla. However it seems to me that there are all kinds of free agents currently available who duplicate skills on the roster. Could the Oilers sign MA Bergeron (or another D), deal Tom Gilbert for Drew Stafford and be a better team? What about signing Manny Malhotra and sending down Robert Nilsson for the season? There are men who can help available right now, today. And the Oilers can sign them and deal from strength to address weakness.
Recognizing the new cap world and using it to advantage is not yet completely known in the NHL, but one thing is becoming evident: the Edmonton Oilers aren’t even trying to figure it out.