RE 09-10: Jean-Francois Jacques

The Edmonton Oilers promised fans a team with more grit in 2009-10, a team that will be tougher to play against. Although the major moves have been flipping the coaching staff and bringing in Nikolai Khabibulin, it’s also true JF Jacques has a top 12 role waiting for him this fall.

With Kyle Brodziak traded and a group of forwards that include Jacques, Brule, Pouliot and Stortini vying for playing time in that range, Jacques would appear to have a very good chance at playing most of the schedule in 2009-10.

  • Boxcars: 7gp, 1-0-1, 9pims
  • Shots: 3
  • Plus Minus: Even
  • Corsi: -27.4
  • GF/GA ON: 3-4
  • 5×5/60: 2.28
  • 5×4/60: 0.00
  • Quality of Competition: 3rd level
  • Quality of Teammates: dregs
  • FO %: 1 of 3 forwards who didn’t take a faceoff
  • 09-10 Cap Hit: $.525M (capgeek)

Because those are numbers from such a small sample size I want to throw in a couple of points:

  • Jacques has fought some real heavyweights: Tollefson, Parros among them.
  • When he played in the AHL, Jacques’ offense was certainly good enough to project him as a major league role player. Per 82 games in the AHL he’s 26-31-57.
  1. What do these numbers tell us? Jacques is unlikely to hold a job in the top 9F any time soon. His will be a very defined role, similar to Zack Stortini’s.
  2. How could the numbers be better? Health is the problem for Jacques. If he can stay in the lineup we should expect 10 goals a season, a bunch of fights and some big time hits.
  3. What about Stortini? There was a time when these two men were neck and neck, but at this point Stortini has established himself in the role Jacques is trying to get: big league role player. Jacques looked like the better prospect at one time, looked like he would bring some offense along with all the other things, but that was a long time ago and these men are no longer prospects.
  4. How will Quinn use him? I imagine he’ll dress in games where a physical element is needed and get 4line shifts with a fight or two thrown in. The Wade Belak role.
  5. Will Quinn keep Jacques and MacIntyre? I don’t think MacIntyre can play.
  6. How Important is Jacques to this team? He has value in that there is a role for a player of his type. However, should Quinn decide to run a 4line with Brule, Stortini and someone like Potulny I don’t think we should be surprised. If Jacques hits waivers, I think he’ll be picked up though, because these big men are so damn valuable if they can actually play.

No quick facts because the goal he scord this season represents his entire offensive output in 60 NHL games.

Predictions Past 2008-09

  • Predicted: 43gp, 3-7-10 (.232 per game)
  • Actual: 7gp, 1-0-1 (.143 per game)

Prediction for 2009-10: 50gp, 3-7-10 (.200 per game)

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39 Responses to "RE 09-10: Jean-Francois Jacques"

  1. Racki says:

    Jacques just needs to focus on the hitting/energy part of his game to be effective. Forget the "power forward" tag; just go out and hit people.

    At this point Stortini is better all around than Jacques and that probably won't ever change. But we could have a good line in Jacques Brule Stortini if they just all focus on laying the hurt on people and let the (limited) offense come naturally.

  2. DBO says:

    If jacques is healthy, we'll have a great 4th line who can punish the opposition, with two middleweights, and sometimes we forget how big jacques really is. He hits like a freight train. he just has to do it consistently. if brule is the 4th line centre, that is a line of pain for opposing teams. I wonder how they'll do in their own end, but if for 8 minutes a game they punish people, they will be fan favorites, give the team an energy boost and be a Quinn favorite

  3. oilerdago says:

    Jacques finally showed some flashes last season that he can be an NHL player. There's nothing wrong with having a 4th line energy player on a value contract. We need more of these.

    A potential low risk/high reward opportunity for management and a kid who can go a long way to endearing himself to a new coach if he stays healthy.

    I'm rooting for him to succeed.

  4. Phil says:

    Here's to hoping for a Lucician revelation for JFJ this year.

  5. Forain says:

    LT, I'm curious about your view on fighting, not just as it relates to the Oil, but in general. Does having a guy like Jacques beat another guy in a fight help the team, or is it just good to have one of these guys around to prevent the other teams' big bads from muscling our skill guys?

  6. Jfry says:

    nothing has made me less excited about the upcoming (impending?) season than reading this year's "reasonable expectation" series!

    i know, you're only the messenger, LT.

  7. Racki says:

    Forain: It does both… JFJ isn't a heavyweight fighter, however he can handle himself with the big boys. The guys that are more prone to push our stars around would likely be willing to answer the bell with a guy JFJ's caliber though. I prefer having those middle-weight guys than a heavyweight. MacIntyre seems to be willing to initiate things though on his own (see the Dustin Boyd termination), so he's at least good in that sense.

    But most heavyweights are going the way of the dodo thanks to the instigator.

  8. hunter1909 says:

    Forain: If you can't lick em in the alley, you won't lick em on the ice.

  9. kris says:

    LT,

    I think there was a typo in your PPG expectation.

    Jacques should be: 0.002 PPG
    Not: 0.200 PPG

  10. hunter1909 says:

    Having "Heavyweights" around who can't even play hockey is ridiculous. It's like roller derby or something. Or wrestling.

    On the other hand, what's more ridiculous than a 20 year old hockey star beating the crap out of a 62 year old cab driver, over a 20 cent argument?

  11. hunter1909 says:

    kris: Come on, give Jacques a break.

    With all of MacT's personal attention to his overall game, he's got to be at least a point per season player by now.

  12. Gord says:

    I have never noticed JFJ on the ice so will not comment on him. But I will give advance notice on the "What about Stortini?" question.

    A blogger commented on BDHS's site a few months ago that Stortini never took a penalty last season that left his team shorthanded.

    If true, that has got to be a record for an instigator / fighter. And this should be taken into consideration when talking about Stortini's value to the team.

  13. hunter1909 says:

    Stortini's one of my favourite Oilers.

  14. Peter says:

    Jacques has decent hands, which he proved in junior and the AHL, and he can really skate for a guy his size. If he can get into a comfort zone out there, he could be a great 4th liner that could even play in the top 9. He could be great down low in the corners, and if he plants himself in front of the net he can't help but score 8 or 9 goals. If Cody McLeod (who??) scored 15 for Colorado last season, Jacques can score 10.

    Skill wise, MacIntyre can barely play in the ECHL. Here's hoping that we don't waste a roster spot on him this year.

  15. Bruce says:

    A blogger commented on BDHS's site a few months ago that Stortini never took a penalty last season that left his team shorthanded.

    Gord, that was almost certainly me, although I never quite said that. What I did say was that Stortini never took a single obstruction penalty the entire season. Zero tripping, hooking, holding or interference penaties. Also no slashing penalties, and despite leading the NHL in fights, no instigator penalties.

    He did however take a few minors of what BCB calls aggressive penalties — notably charging, boarding and roughing. Which in my mind is a cost of doing business. He got two high-sticking minors which were both errors by the referee, and otherwise didn't take a stick-related foul of any type in the entire season.

    If true, that has got to be a record for an instigator / fighter.

    Zorg certainly tied the record of fewest obstruction fouls for players of any role. He's not exactly Davey Keon, but he keeps his stick to himself. Thecaptainethanmoreau could learn a thing or two from some of those (ahem) younger players.

    And this should be taken into consideration when talking about Stortini's value to the team.

    You're darn tootin' it should. An instigator/fighter with extraordinary discipline is an uncommon asset.

  16. quain says:

    "If true…"

    It's not. First game of the season that he played he took a charging penalty at 11:22 of the first period that resulted in a powerplay for Colorado.

    Third game of the season, that he played, he took an unmatched roughing penalty that resulted in a goal sixteen seconds later for Chicago.

    I enjoy that hunter finds necessary, in every thread, to bitch and moan about the culture of fawning over grinders and proceeds to state that Zack Stortini is one of his favourite Oilers.

  17. Gord says:

    Gord, that was almost certainly me, although I never quite said that.

    I hate it when I am wrong. Thank you for the clarification Bruce…

    Having said that, Stortini knows his role on the ice & does it very, very well…

  18. NormanMendoza says:

    It probably doesn't change a thing, but 37 of his 60 GP came in that awful year of 06-07. While he certainly didn't redeem himself with the boxscore of 0-0-0 — that year was bad for many players and this team. Not a great year to make your rookie push.

    His remaining 23 GP have come as cups of coffee across 3 other seasons.

    I can safely say that he hasn't done anything to distinguish himself — but that funny resume has a fairly decent chance of having him surprise people this year. He's at that age when bigger guys seem to figure some things out.

  19. Dennis says:

    I remember that scrap in Ana and the kid fared well for himself.

    Last year was the first time I could watch his shifts and honestly think he looked like a real NHLer and he should be an asset at home where he can be sheltered.

  20. Jonathan Willis says:

    Jacques just needs to focus on the hitting/energy part of his game to be effective. Forget the "power forward" tag; just go out and hit people.

    I disagree with this sort of reasoning. It isn't that Jacques shouldn't worry about his hitting game (after all, that's part of the reason he's here) but given these options:

    a) Jacques as he is + a better hitting game
    b) Jacques as he is + a better overall game

    the Oilers will be better off with B. He already knows how to hurt people.

  21. Jonathan Willis says:

    If you can't lick em in the alley, you won't lick em on the ice.

    If you can't lick 'em on the ice, it doesn't really matter what you can do in the alley.

  22. Jonathan Willis says:

    Last year was the first time I could watch his shifts and honestly think he looked like a real NHLer and he should be an asset at home where he can be sheltered.

    And that's Jacques' real value as a hockey player – he looks like a guy who might be useful in more than one way in a couple of seasons.

  23. Bruce says:

    re: JFJ. Perhaps illogically after all these fits and spurts of general nothingness, I continue to hold high hopes for him. I really like the idea of a banger on each wing of the fourth line, and so (I suspect) does Pat Quinn. Put a smart guy between them with defensive chops, some puck skills, a clue about the cycle game, and they'll be fine. It used to be Brodziak; presumably now it's Pouliot.

    That said, I've been presuming Oilers were soon to sign a vet 3C for over a year now, and so far I've been presuming wrong.

  24. Jfry says:

    i hate me for doing this, but cogs + for kane?

  25. Bruce says:

    given these options:
    a) Jacques as he is + a better hitting game
    b) Jacques as he is + a better overall game
    the Oilers will be better off with B.

    JW: By far. JFJ already brings a pretty fair hitting game, trouble is both his GP and TOI/G numbers are low enough that he doesn't really compile raw hit numbers of any scale. I'm "at work" so don't have access to those numbers at the moment, but I recall JFJ having something in the 15 hits per 60 range in '07-08 and/or '08-09, which is Zorg territory, while nobody else on the team except possibly MacIntyre is anywhere close.

    In part of course it is a function of that low TOI that such players have to make the most of those minutes and establish high hit rates, especially when the coach says "if you want another game, get out there and hit people". I expect Pat Quinn to be saying the very same thing, in fact I'd be disappointed if he didn't. But if thopse guys deliver 8-10 minutes a night and 12-15 hits/60, that's a real solid physical foundation on which to build their overall game.

  26. Bruce says:

    cogs + for kane?

    How about Cogs + $0.20 ?

    Asshole.

  27. Bruce says:

    Asshole.

    Kane that is, not Cogs and certainly not you Jfry. :D

  28. PDO says:

    I didn't think AAAA players existed.

    Then I saw JFJ destroy the AHL, and take damn near 60 games to get a POINT in the NHL.

    Sadly, I like taking a mental beating, and still think there's a legitimate NHL player there somewhere.

    He's just too big, too strong and too fast…

  29. kris says:

    So, odds are we'll have:

    1. Jacques, 2. Stortini, 3. Strudwick 4. Moreau, 5. Souray, 6. Peckham, 7. Smid

    as either regulars or fringe players.

    They can all fight, some of them pretty well. I guess none of them has much of a chance of beating a Boogard or Laraque, but Jacques and Stortini can hold on against a heavy weight. Of course, I don't see what beating Laraque really gets the team.

    So can we dump SMac now? I mean, I don't think he can beat the heavy weights either.

    On a seperate note, I hold by my prediction -which is a wild guess for fun- that Jacques loses his 4th line spot to Minard early in the season.

  30. hunter1909 says:

    Jacques shows up and his AHL stats are mirrored by his NHL ones this year.

    Khabibulin finds Edmonton so much like Volgograd that he plays like Tretiak, through sheer joy.

    Gagner scores 70 points, and promises more to come in future seasons.

    Horcoff gets put on the third line, and settles in to become the penultimate defending center the team dreams about.

    Brule, and Schremp both come to camp and literally blow the hinges off the doors, and both make the team in a big big way.

    Peckham and Smid emerge from nowhere as premiere feared defencemen.

    brb: I'm sure more great things are coming next season, but I just ran out of meds, and have to get down to the methadone clinic by 6.

  31. Steve says:

    and settles in to become the penultimate defending center the team dreams about.

    I do not think that that word means what you think it means.

  32. NBOilerFan says:

    This is the one guy I am pulling for the most to have a breakout year.

    The "Year of the Crazy Train"

  33. bookie says:

    Horcoff gets put on the third line, and settles in to become the penultimate defending center the team dreams about.

    I do not think that that word means what you think it means.

    Well, the third line center is kind of the second last center so perhaps it is exactly what he meant to say…

  34. RiversQ says:

    Yes, Brule and Schremp literally blow the hinges off the doors.

    Literally.

    There's just a pair of big gold half Oiler symbol doors blown off.

    Literally.

    Quinn is so impressed at this display, that even though it has nothing to do with hockey (like lacrosse style shootout moves) that he literally feels compelled to give them both spots on the first line.

    Mayor Mandel considers giving them the key to the city but what's the fucking point? They could just literally blow the hinges off the city doors anytime anyway. So he settles on two Edmonton t-shirts and gift certificates to Churro King.

    Literally.

  35. RiversQ says:

    The reason why Stortini and JFJ have so many hits is because when they're out there, the Oilers don't have the puck.

    Might as well look useful at least.

    Maybe you'll fool somebody. Maybe.

  36. Steve says:

    Yes, Brule and Schremp literally blow the hinges off the doors.

    Literally.

    I was going to make that point too, but I figured that that, in combination with my penultimate thing, might raise the assholeishness of my comment to unreasonable levels. Plus, you did it better than I would have.

  37. Lowetide says:

    assholeishness. It's a word we use and hear but it never really gets credit. Newspaper writers could have saved tons of time during the Bush era if only they could have used the word.

    Shame.

  38. Ribs says:

    Yes, Brule and Schremp literally blow the hinges off the doors.

    Did anyone else imagine the two of them in cowboy hats, boots, pistol holsters and matching captain america and captain canuck thong underwears, blasting the dressing room doors open with six-shooters while yelling Yee-Haw!! before skating onto Rexall ice?

    …just me?….okay…ummm.. .nevermind.

  39. RiversQ says:

    All things considered, I think that sounds totally reasonable Ribs.

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