The Guy is a Winner

I’ve read a ton of sports books over the years and one main theme is common with regard to traded players: the first cut is the deepest. Once a player in any sport has been dealt by the team that drafted and developed him it becomes no big deal. It’s a business.

But the first one that sends you down the line means saying goodbye to some long term bonds and that group of young people who joined the rank and file at the same time. That’s your group, your brethren.

Cogliano is in a unique situation: he was traded and then not traded, kind of a pro sports near death experience that could have been a massive negative if he was a less mature or impressive individual.

Few if any could claim surprise at the maturity of his words today when addressing the situation:

  • “It’s disappointing. I like being here. I want to be an Oiler.”
  • “I’m not holding any grudges.”
  • “It just made me strong and it’s good motivation too.”
  • “I’m a guy who has some worth in the league and I have to prove it now.”

I don’t know if I’m more impressed with him or his parents; either way, what a tremendous young man and here’s hoping the Edmonton Oilers do what all strong organizations to with exceptional young men. Wait to see what they are until trading them away.

What is Andrew Cogliano? An NHL regular with two full seasons at age 22 and he’s just getting started. It’s comforting to know he’ll be an Oiler for the foreseeable future and my guess is he’ll have a strong season in 2009-10. The guy’s a winner.

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41 Responses to "The Guy is a Winner"

  1. PDO says:

    Pure class.

    Hoping he has a big year, and I remain very intrigued by a Cogliano – Horcoff – Hemsky line.

    Speed to burn, he can finish some chances and he's smart enough that the defensive side of the game should come. Hopefully sooner than later.

    I think one thing came clear today:

    The Oilers cannot trade Andrew Cogliano… his comments just made him untouchable.

    And this is coming from a guy who loved the rumoured trade.

  2. DBO says:

    Agreed on not dealing him. i've been one of the regulars who have said that we should deal one of Gagner or Cogs since they both can't play centre. but if Cogs can move to the wing, where his speed and goal scoring become huge assets, he can be a 30 goal guy in the near future. Love his comments. Shows a maturity our boy robbie should look up and emulate.

    I agree with PDO that I like the idea of
    Cogs-Horc-Hemsky
    And i also like
    Penner-Gagner-O'Sullivan

    That's two solid lines, with the gagner line able to outperform the weaker comp. We just need a 3rd line centre who can kill penalties, win a faceoff and play solid tough two way hockey. You know, a guy like Malhotra who at this point can be had for less then $1.5 mill. Let Schremp walk for nothing, use his contract spot for malhotra and I am happy going into the year.

  3. spOILer says:

    He has the potential to be a game-breaker. Maybe not on the level of a Gaborik, but certainly in the category below… game-breaking speed with decent hands and a cold heart.

    He's already proven he can be money at the end of the third and OT. He's already nearly treading water against slightly below average competition. I am just delighted at his progress.

    And he comes with an attitude that is stark in it's contrast to Rob Schremp's FU.

    If he learns the passing game a little better, if he can handle a shift to wing, and continues to develop his defensive side… well we will have a helluva nice player on our hands.

    "Winner" is the way I think of him too.

  4. flamingpavelbure says:

    Class Act. But demanding a trade after that episod wouldnt be such a disgrace. Cutler did it with class, its understandable. Just dont do it the Heatley way.

  5. spOILer says:

    I read elsewhere that he admitted he would be willing to try wing in the interview. Can anyone confirm?

  6. Fake Craig McTavish says:

    Easily the Oilers best "prospect". Yes, better than Gagner.

    Dave Keon I tell ya.

  7. FlamingPavelBure says:

    Better than Gagner? Not sure, wait until Gagner is 22 to check that, Cogliano is 2 years older, that you must remember

  8. bookie says:

    Cogs and Gagner, I think we should be excited about the future.

  9. Coach pb9617 says:

    Class Act. But demanding a trade after that episod wouldnt be such a disgrace. Cutler did it with class, its understandable. Just dont do it the Heatley way.

    Whaaaaaaaaa

  10. FlamingPavelBure says:

    Yes i know it's weird to say, but Cutler asked for a trade, was traded and didn't refused the trade, and did not ditch the organization. It's a whole other thing for Heatley.

  11. Fake Craig McTavish says:

    bookie said…
    Cogs and Gagner, I think we should be excited about the future.

    Should we?

    Many teams in the WC have better young prospects.

  12. PDO says:

    Like Vancouver, right DSF?

  13. flamingpavelbure says:

    FMC: I don't think there's much team who can brag about a 20 years old, with 2 pro hockey years under his belt.

  14. Lowetide says:

    The thing about both Gagner and Cogliano is we don't know what we have yet. Phoenix will trade half their guys before they know what's what and Toronto used to be famous for it but historically the Oilers haven't done that (Satan aside).

    We'll be able to talk about these fellows with authority in 2012.

  15. Peter says:

    Maybe it was partly fortune, but after Cogliano scored those back-to-back game winning OT goals in the spring of '08 I was sold on him. No, he's not defensively aware yet, but he's too determined and too good a skater to ever be a defensive liability. He's not good on faceoffs, okay. Crosby sucked at faceoffs his first 2 years as well. This kid has wheels, pretty good hands, and tons of heart. I think he'll be Matt Lombardi with more offence. A legitimate 2nd line centre who can fill in as a 1st liner, and who will be big come playoff time. If we get rid of him before he reaches his prime, we are making a mistake. I also think he'll be a player that gives you more than his stats will indicate.

  16. B.C.B. says:

    I am still for trading Cogliano, but understand that will not make me popular after todays mature and intelligent comments. Reasons:
    1. We have too many small forwards.
    2. I do not think he will turn into the first line LW, we all are hoping he will become. I think he will be a very good second liner, but I do not see either the creativity /on-ice-vision or the natural goal scoring of a first liner.
    3. His natural position is offensive centre. IMO, Gagner is better in this position then Cogliano, and Horcoff has one of the top two centre positions locked up for the next three years (barring a significant injury). This leaves Cogliano on the '3rd' or '4th' lines (in terms of EV minutes), and that is not enough minutes for him to be effective.
    4. His, Gagner, and Grebs contracts are all up next off seasons. I still can not see a way they can afford to keep them all. Nor would the Oilers have the cap room to go after a first line LW in either trade or FA.
    5. He is not strong at special teams. Last season his 5×4 Pts/60 was 3.39, and that is not good enough. His PK is non-existence at this point.
    6. His value is higher then all the other small men in the top 9 (except Gagner). He is better then Patty'O and Nilsson, but more importantly he will bring in a better return. Also, he will have a richer contract then Patty'O, so I think it makes sense to trade Cogliano for that first line LW, and keep Patty'O/Nilsson's saller salaries.

    Any way you look at it: Cogliano is due for a large raise next season, and doesn't fit into the Oilers top 6 forwards (as they stand: too many small men, too many young men, and too many 2nd liners).
    This is just my opinion, and I could be wrong, but I would trade him before the draft next year: for a part we don't have and need (say young 3C, first line LW, a reliable 27ish Goalie, or a veteran shut down 3-4D: maybe even a combination of a two of these).

  17. Coach pb9617 says:

    Crosby sucked at faceoffs his first 2 years as well.

    Well, there's a fact we can check.

    Sydney Crosby

    2005-2006, 18 years old – 45.5%
    2006-2007, 19 years old – 49.8%

    Seems like that statement doesn't mesh with the facts.

  18. doritogrande says:

    I hope he's staying long term after the scare we had this offseason. I couldn't believe he was part of the Heatley trade, especially after I had his name put on my new White jersey only 4 months previous. Buddy never made the AHL stop, and as LT will attest to, that's the way the dynamic players make their NHL transition.

    Here's to hoping he's a top-6er for us for the next decade.

  19. Fake Craig McTavish says:

    flamingpavelbure said…
    FMC: I don't think there's much team who can brag about a 20 years old, with 2 pro hockey years under his belt.

    Oh, how about Kopitar and Doughty in LA for starters?

    Kane and Toews?

    Voracek, Brassard, Filatov?

    If your cutoff is a 20 year with 2 years experience there are a few but that doesn't speak to upside.

  20. Fake Craig McTavish says:

    Lowetide said…
    The thing about both Gagner and Cogliano is we don't know what we have yet. Phoenix will trade half their guys before they know what's what and Toronto used to be famous for it but historically the Oilers haven't done that (Satan aside).

    We'll be able to talk about these fellows with authority in 2012.

    The gong show in Phoenix aside, there are several WC conference teams that would seem to be under new management. And even Maloney in Phoenix seems to have a clue but who knows what will happen?

    Didn't we think we would be "speaking with authority" about Torres and Stoll about now?

  21. Lowetide says:

    We certainly know who they are, and in the case of Stoll the Oilers cashed him for outstanding value.

  22. HBomb says:

    I like Cogliano. But I still would have been OK with him going for Heatley. Guys who produce offense at Heatley's level don't grow on trees.

    That being said, I'm glad to see Cogliano handling his name being mentioned in trade rumors so well. I hope he uses it as nothing but motivation to be better this year.

    Straight up, I prefer Gagner over Cogliano, but that's no knock against Andrew – he's a hell of a prospect nonetheless.

  23. FlamingPavelBure says:

    FMC: I don't think there's much team who can brag about a 20 years old, with 2 pro hockey years under his belt.

    Oh, how about Kopitar and Doughty in LA for starters?

    Okay
    Kane and Toews? Toews played on his second year, therefore he was 21

    Voracek, Brassard, Filatov?

    Voracek only 1 year.
    Brassard, a half year combined in 2 years. and he was 20 when he began.

    Filatov played 8 game.s

    SO SHHHHH

  24. B.C.B. says:

    FPB: in recent post you have been known for typing up comments without doing research. FCM pointed this out, once again; please quit telling folks to stop arguing with you, or in this case a polite form of 'shut-up'. We will all stop arguing with you soon, as to-hopefully- stop encouraging you from speaking. Either bring something useful to the conversation or read without posting, please.

  25. flamingpavelbure says:

    BCB: Some of the players he names werent 20 years old going on theyr 3rd season, i don't know what that comment is for.

  26. bookie says:

    BCB FMO's your DBO's mother, So FCT you PDO'd MF!

    We are getting way too many names with only 3 letters these days!

  27. Lowetide says:

    For some reason people seem pissy here tonight, must be the heat.

  28. Psyche says:

    Cogliano has terrific determination and competitive drive. Last year the learning curve slowed down compared to the his first season. I expect an athlete with his 'intestinal fortitude' will deliver more this upcoming season. I really hope the Oilers hold on to him long enough to know what they have.

  29. GF says:

    I never have understood how players get troubled by trade talk when almost every great NHLer of the last 40 years has been traded. I suppose it's because they've been told how much the organization values them, but surely they can perceive the unspoken phrase 'unless they're offering Malkin for you, and then …'

  30. godot10 says:

    Cogliano's first two years are somewhat comparable t to Kessel's first two years.

  31. Ribs says:

    Cogliano sticking with the Oilers is very important to me right now as my girlfriend pretty much denounced her Oilers faith once word came that he had been traded.

    His words today were heartwarming and reminded me that maybe some of these guys do actually care about playing hockey in Edmonton.

  32. Lord Bob says:

    He's just going to break our hearts, guys.

  33. bookie says:

    I never have understood how players get troubled by trade talk when almost every great NHLer of the last 40 years has been traded.

    Simple, they like it where they are at and worry about the unknown. Also they like to think that they have a special place in the GM's heart. Its kind of like how your girlfriend or wife thinks you wouldn't trade her for (insert favorite hot chick here) even though its clear that you are getting a hell of a deal in the trade…

  34. Racki says:

    Cogliano said in the interview that he thinks he'll hit 30 goals this year. That's what I like to here.. bold, confident predictions. He really wants to prove himself too. Moreau's quote of the year: "He got pissed off, and he trained his ass off and he’s ready to play. He’s determined to show everybody that he shouldn’t be mentioned in any trade rumors, regardless of who it’s for." Hell ya, good words by Chopper.

  35. Woodguy says:

    I'm not a big fan of thecaptainethanmoreau, but I really like that quote.

    Many Oilers would benefit if they played pissed off more often.

    Let's hope 18 can help convince the whole team to play a little pissed off all year.

  36. Lowetide says:

    Lord Bob: We don't know that, we just don't.

  37. Oilmaniac says:

    alright!.. RaH RaH…

    I guess its getting close to the pre-season opimism bubble… by that I mean, the negative stuff is being put on the back burner.. good read, thanks LT.. it is good about these kinda positives.. it gives me another reason to cheer for this kid, on top of the exciting brand of hockey he wields as well…

  38. Bruce says:

    I may be slow on the uptake, but have there been quotes from Smid and Penner w.r.t. the trade that wasn't?

    Pretty impressive reaction by Cogliano, fer sher.

  39. PunjabiOil says:

    I guess I'm the only one that isn't sparked by Cogliano's comments.

    Sure he said all the right things, but what exactly else was he supposed to say?

    I would still do the deal on any day that ends in a 'y'

    I like Cogliano. I like that he goes into the corners and battles. I like the fact this size [or lack of] is of negligible concern. That said, I'm not convinced he's anything more than a rich man's Todd Marchant.

    This upcoming season will be instrumental for both Cogliano and Gagner.

  40. Doogie2K says:

    "He got pissed off, and he trained his ass off and he’s ready to play. He’s determined to show everybody that he shouldn’t be mentioned in any trade rumors, regardless of who it’s for."

    And this is how you handle a trade request: turn it into motivation. Let's just hope he doesn't try to do too much to "prove himself," or he'll make things worse instead.

  41. PunjabiOil says:

    I also agree with PDO.

    Fake Craig Mactavish is the internet troll that is DashingSilverFox.

    It's quite sad, actually.

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