OPENING NIGHT LINEUPS AND PROJECTING 12-13

After years of massive turnover each summer, the Edmonton Oilers are once again establishing their “heart of the order.” The additions of Nail Yakupov and Justin Schultz give the club two more integral parts for the future.

 

Opening Night Fall 2005
  • L1: Horcoff-Smyth-Dvorak
  • L2: Peca-Torres-Hemsky
  • L3: Stoll-Moreau-Pisani
  • L4: Reasoner-Harvey-Laraque
  • D1: Pronger-Staios
  • D2: Ulanov-Smith
  • D3: Cross-Bergeron
  • G1: Ty Conklin (Jussi Markkanen)

What a beautiful roster, maybe the last great Oiler team of my lifetime. Notice the strength at center–Marty is #4!!–and the quality at wing (there are 6 good ones and Laraque could keep the pick 4,000 feet from the net for most of a shift just by cycling). Pronger the Great, Staios and Smith plus the dirty Russian, Cory the slow and Chaos incorporated. The G was the weak spot and that was addressed wonderfully by the GM at the time–although pretty damn late in the day.

Opening Night Fall 2006

  • L1: Horcoff-Smyth-Lupul
  • L2: Sykora-Torres-Hemsky
  • L3: Stoll-Moreau-Pisani
  • L4: Reasoner-Thoresen-Winchester
  • D1: Tjarnqvist-Smith
  • D2: Smid-Staios
  • D3: Bergeron-Greene
  • G1: Roloson (Markkanen)

The goaltending is better from season’s start but the blue is shattered and center misses Peca. For those bitching and moaning about Scott Howson’s handling of the Nash proceedings, have a good long look at the blue.

 

Opening Night Fall 2007

  • L1: Horcoff-Penner-Hemsky
  • L2: Stoll-Torres-Nilsson
  • L3: Reasoner-Sanderson-Brodziak
  • L4: Cogliano-Jacques-Gagner
  • D1: Pitkanen-Staios
  • D2: Souray-Greene
  • D3: Tarnstrom-Gilbert
  • G1: Roloson-Garon

The addition of Penner lends a hand to the top line and Stoll/Torres was always a fun group. The kids being on the 4line but are soon moving up. Pitkanen and Souray have been added to the blue and youngster Gilbert joins the group. I’d completely forgotten about Sanderson.

 

Opening Night 2008

  • L1: Horcoff-Cole-Hemsky
  • L2: Gagner-Cogliano-Nilsson
  • L3: Pisani-Moreau-Penner
  • L4: Brodziak-Pouliot-Stortini
  • D1: Visnovsky-Souray
  • D2: Grebeskhov-Gilbert
  • D3: Strudwick-Staios
  • G1: Garon, Roloson, Deslauriers

Garon started and that was news. Important notes include Cole on 1line LW and Pisani at center. The kid line with Gagner and Cogs with Robert Nilsson gets a push and that 4line had some promise. The D pairings looked more experienced and less ragged and Strudwick knocked Smid upstairs to begin the season. Lubomir Visnovsky was so wonderful in an Oiler uniform (pre-Quinn).

 

Opening Night 2009

  • L1: Horcoff-Jacques-Hemsky
  • L2: Cogliano-Penner-Brule
  • L3: Comrie-O’Sullivan-Stone
  • L4: Gagner-Moreau-Stortini
  • D1: Grebeshkov-Gilbert
  • D2: Souray-Staios
  • D3: Visnovsky-Smid
  • G1: Khabibulin, Deslauriers

The mighty Quinn’s touch is on this roster. Lordy. I don’t know what to say. Lubo on the third pairing. Fuck off.

 

Opening Night 2010

  • L1: Gagner-Penner-Hemsky
  • L2: Horcoff-Hall-Eberle
  • L3: Cogliano-Paajarvi-Brule
  • L4: Fraser-Jones-MacIntyre
  • D1: Whitney-Foster
  • D2: Smid-Gilbert
  • D3: Peckham-Vandermeer
  • G1: Khabibulin, Dubnyk

Gagner gets the two best linemates and Horcoff mentors the kids. Completely reasonable use of roster assets. The 3line is a kid line and the 4line begins the elevator shaft era at that position. Ryan Whitney leads a developing group of youngsters on the blue.

 

Opening Night 2011

  • L1: Belanger-Smyth-Eberle
  • L2: Nuge-Hall-Hemsky
  • L3: Horcoff-Omark-Paajarvi
  • L4: Lander-Hordichuk-Jones
  • D1: Sutton-Gilbert
  • D2: Barker-Petry
  • D3: Smid-Peckham
  • G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

It’s funny to look back and see what was expected of Belanger, I bet Krueger makes it his goal in life to have the C recover at least a little–it would be a big deal. Horcoff once again gets the kids and the 4line is a sinkhole. The blueline has some nice things  but the presence of Barker is a tell and Sutton is better served in a depth role (and proved it over the season).

Projected 12-13 Opening Night

  • L1: Nuge-Hartikainen-Eberle
  • L2: Gagner-Hall-Yakupov
  • L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky
  • L4: Belanger-Eager-Paajarvi
  • HS: Jones, Hordichuk
  • D1: Smid-Petry
  • D2: Whitney-J Schultz
  • D3: Sutton-N Schultz
  • HS: Peckham
  • G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

I  had a coffee with Woodguy yesterday and his influence is on the line combinations. I like this group, you may have your own ideas (and please share).

Still need a top 4D (forcing Whitney and Sutton down, respectively) and I continue to argue for a winger who can mentore the group of youngsters coming along.

What say you?

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183 Responses to "OPENING NIGHT LINEUPS AND PROJECTING 12-13"

  1. hunter1909 says:

    Totally like your opening night lineups card; with the exception of Nick Shultz on the 3rd pairing, not that I have anything to suggest…

    Obviously my first thought was “Lowetide’s pimping the Gilbert trade as always.”

  2. Woodguy says:

    Projected 11-12 Opening Night

    L1: Nuge-Hartikainen-Eberle
    L2: Gagner-Hall-Yakupov
    L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky
    L4: Belanger-Eager-Paajarvi
    HS: Jones, Hordichuk
    D1: Smid-Petry
    D2: Whitney-J Schultz
    D3: Sutton-N Schultz
    HS: Peckham
    G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    I had a coffee with Woodguy yesterday and his influence is on the line combinations.

    Apparently I didn’t influence you enough.

    Mine are:

    L1: Nuge-Yakupov-Eberle
    L2: Gagner-Hall-Hemsky
    L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Paajarvi
    L4: Belanger-Eager- Harski
    HS: Petrell, Hordichuk
    D1: Smid-Petry
    D2: Shultz-J Schultz
    D3: Whitney-Sutton
    HS: Peckham
    G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    I think there is a real chance that Whitney is IR all season if he still can’t turn.

    I’d pick up a 1LD and push Smid and N.Shultz down a slot.

    Forwards are going to go out for a D and I think its Paajarvi and/or Jones +?

    Reasonable trade partners (teams with D looking for F) could be NJD, PHX, CBJ.

  3. sliderule says:

    I think Hemsky will be traded for some sort of D .

    If it’s a D like Runblad we are lottery meat.

    Despite rumors Gagner is going nowhere unless we get a center back.

    We already have two donut lines we don’t need three.

  4. cc says:

    RNH – Yakupov – Smyth – (I would give this line the easy, offensive zone starts. Kind of like AV does with the Sedin`s)
    Gagner-Eberle-Hall (I think Gagner was magic with these 2 and they should be able to play the toughs this year.)
    Horcoff-Hemsky-PRV (Shutdown line, with some offensive pop. I would love to see PRV spend the first 10 – 15 games with Horcoff. I think, the mentoring that Horcoff performed with Hall & Eberle in their first season was underated. If PRV is going to become a solid 2nd-3rd line tweener I feel he needs to apprentice beside Horc for a year.)
    Belanger-Jones-Hartikanen-Eager (Rotate in and out which ever one is going.)

    I like you`re defense pairings with one change. I would give Peckham a 10 game opportunity with N. Schultz. I believe the reasons that Nick was brought in was to mentor the young dmen. Similar to the role that Horcoff has done with some of the forwards. If Peckham can`t play with a calming presence like N.Schultz then he`ll likely never have a prolonged Oiler career, unless he becomes the next Hordichuk.

  5. PerryK says:

    Woodguy:
    Projected 11-12 Opening Night

    I think there is a real chance that Whitney is IR all season if he still can’t turn.

    I’d pick up a 1LD and push Smid and N.Shultz down a slot.

    Forwards are going to go out for a D and I think its Paajarviand/or Jones +?

    Reasonable trade partners (teams with D looking for F) could be NJD, PHX, CBJ.

    Woodguy,

    I’d pick up a RD (stay at home type) and move Sutton over to 3LD.

    I previously suggested Jurcina and Eminger; both are UFA.

    Love to see Jones leave for some value; even if it’s a second rounder.

  6. WeridAl says:

    It’s the lack of size at C that scares me. Prefered they played Yakupov on the 3rd or 4th lines and show cased Hemsky to increase his trade value. At least for the first part of the season.

  7. sliderule says:

    I think you can drop Peckham off that list unless he plans on signing up for Jenny Craig real soon.

  8. Rondo says:

    If this is the team where do you see them finishing?

  9. Dave Casselman says:

    Would there be a faster line in all the NHL than Hall centering MPS and the Yak? Don’t think it would work out all that well but boy, what a track meet.

  10. DBO says:

    NO way Jones sits to start year. I’m trying to remember Kruegers lineups when he coached the team. I seem to recall him having a bit more balance and making sure Belanger got 4th line minutes.

    I fully expect Krueger to have 2 tough minute lines, one “checking line” and a sheltered line via zone starts and matchups.

    Hall-Gagner-Eberle (PVP, gotta find out eventually)
    Harsky/MPS-Nuge-Yak (soft minutes and sheltered)
    Smyth-Horc-Hemsky (a lot of EV minutes and against every top line)
    Eager-Belanger-Jones (Krueger will trust them to take D zone draws and play physical. All on Belanger playing better)

    Smid-Petry
    Shultz-Shultz
    Whitney-Sutton/UFA (I hope Rozsival)

    I think Krueger plays his most steady dman with Shultz, so that’ll be senior. He’ll see how the kid handles it and if needed he can sway Sutton or Whitney in for late game stuff.

  11. justDOit says:

    Projected lineup? 2011?

  12. Gret99zky says:

    Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky

    Barf.

    I’d like to see Hemsky play away from Horcoff-and-die. Maybe Gagner.

    Besides the two rookies (one very skilled albeit) this line-up looks just like last years so I expect the results to be nearly the same.

    Hopefully we can finish 24-19th in the league with this roster. Maybe Krueger can create a Miracle on Elm Street.

    RE Fall 2005: What a beautiful roster, maybe the last great Oiler team of my lifetime.

    LT, if I recall that team was lightning in a bottle during the playoff and shit on a stick during the regular season.

  13. Rondo says:

    If they are thinking of trading Hemsky or Gagner they will give them soft minutes as much as they can.

  14. justDOit says:

    Gret99zky,

    You and I seem to recall the same smell from the regular season. A lot of people were down on Peca for not transforming into the second coming of Doug Weight, Markannen played pretty good (but not good enough), and Cross/Bergeron just wasn’t cutting it.

    They were just good enough to hold on to 8th until Lowe could find the right replacements in Spacek, Samsonov and Rollie, so I have a difficult time calling that lineup anything other than good.

  15. Maverick says:

    Opening day line – up game #1 EDM vs VAN

    (my O.C.D. has LW-C-RW) :-)

    LW – C – RW

    L1 – Smyth – Nuge – Yakupov
    L2 – Hemsky – Hall – Eberle (Yes I have Hall at Center)
    L3 – Belanger – Gagner – Hartikanen
    L4 – Eager – Horcoff – Hordichuk
    HS. Jones/Petrell

    D1 – Smid – Petry
    D2 – the Schultz’s
    D3 – Whitney – Sutton
    HS – Peckham

    Goal – Dubnyk – Khabby

    The Hall at center experiment will happen in the preseason and the start of the season and if it goes well Gagner is expendable. If it fails than Hall back to L1 LW and Smyth to L3 LW, Gagner back to L2 C, lots of chess pieces to move around, still thinking a trade has to be in the works.

  16. Jesse says:

    Woodguy:
    Projected 11-12 Opening Night


    L1: Nuge-Hartikainen-Eberle L2: Gagner-Hall-Yakupov L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky L4: Belanger-Eager-Paajarvi HS: Jones, Hordichuk D1: Smid-Petry D2: Whitney-J Schultz D3: Sutton-N Schultz HS: Peckham G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    Ihad a coffee with Woodguy yesterday and his influence is on the line combinations.

    Apparently I didn’t influence you enough.

    Mine are:

    L1: Nuge-Yakupov-Eberle L2: Gagner-Hall-Hemsky L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Paajarvi L4: Belanger-Eager- Harski HS: Petrell, Hordichuk D1: Smid-Petry D2: Shultz-J Schultz D3: Whitney-Sutton HS: Peckham G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    I think there is a real chance that Whitney is IR all season if he still can’t turn.

    I’d pick up a 1LD and push Smid and N.Shultz down a slot.

    Forwards are going to go out for a D and I think its Paajarviand/or Jones +?

    Reasonable trade partners (teams with D looking for F) could be NJD, PHX, CBJ.

    I wanted to mention because I’ve noticed you bring this up –

    I think Whitney’s ankle is improving, albeit slowly and possibly never to the degree we/he’d like. I went to a couple games late in the season and watched his turning and crossovers specifically because I remembered you mention his limitations you’d noticed earlier in the season. I did notice him successfully pivot and also cross over off of both sides. It wasn’t the prettiest smoothest movement, but it was at the very least a successful manouver.

    I’m certainly not calling you out, but I do think that at least some of the verbal coming from Whitney about improvement is founded. At least from what I saw (so take that for what it’s worth).

  17. scobes says:

    I need to see nuge hall yak at some point. Even if it only happens once.

    Need to put PRV in situations to succeed, so we can move him next year if we have to. I am with woodguy, except jones on 3rd and PRV in the AHL. Bring him up when an injury gives him a good opportunity. Would be nice to see klefbom in NA the first day of the season and on the roster for the first 9.

  18. Esa10 says:

    Morrow and fistric would solve a lot of the holes.. I’d be willing to trade any combo of paaravi, 1st, prospects not named klefbom, Peckham, potter, omark, etc

    Hall nuge eberle
    Morrow gagner yak
    Smyth horc hemsky
    Eager belanger jones

    Smid petry
    Whitney n.Schultz
    Fistric j.schultz
    Sutton

  19. fuzzy muppet says:

    DBO,

    That’s the way I see it too.

    the old Smyth-horc-hemmer line takes the toughs. Gagner Hall and eberle the seconds.

    That leaves RNH and Yak to murder 3rd pairing defenders. Hartikainen gives them the size needed to create more space.

    I’d also (try) move Jones and Peckham and a pick or prospect to pick up a guy like Sekaras or tyutin to stabilize the back end a bit.

    The lineups not perfect (need size down the middle) but competitive. they simply must improve if they expect Hall and the boys to seriously consider staying. Losing is infectious

  20. jonrmcleod says:

    DBO,

    Wasn’t Jones a healthy scratch for 1 or 2 games that Kreuger coached?

  21. Traktor says:

    Hall – RNH – Eberle
    MPS – Gagner – Yakupov
    Harty – Pitlick – Hemsky
    Smyth – Lander – Jones

    Smid – Schultz
    Klefbom – Petry
    Whitney – Schultz

    DD
    Roy

  22. BeerLeagueHero says:

    LT,

    I can buy what you’re selling but I don’t see the point of putting PRV on the 4th line. I’m not sure he ever becomes a goal scorer on the level of an eberle/hall or if everything works out, a yakupov, but I think there’s a future on the 2nd line for him setting up his linemates and I also think he’ll be a helluva PK man someday.

    If the lineup stays as is my Lines would be:

    L1-Hall/Nuge/Eberle
    L2-PRV/Gagner/Yakupov
    L3-Smyth/Horcoff/Hemsky
    L4-Hartikainen/Belanger/Jones
    HS-Hordichuk/Eager

    Line 1 has developed some crazy chemistry over the last year and it would be a mistake to mess around with that.

    Line 2 is one that could go either way. I don’t think I would give them a lot of defensive zone starts.

    I love line 3. Smyth, Horcoff, Hemsky. A great line in its day and it would be a great line now. A very responsible and safe line to cover some of the tougher minutes.

    Line 4 would be a great line to send out to muck it up. Hordichuk and Eager could come in for muscle.

    As for the D, I think it could go something like this:

    D1-Whitney/J.Schultz
    D2-Smid/Petry
    D3-N.Schultz/Klefbom
    HS-Sutton

    If Klefbom is doing as good as I’ve heard, then perhaps there is a spot for him on the 3rd pairing this season and why not pair him up with N.Schultz, an excellent mentor.

    We’ve got a lot of depth and a lot of players that could go up or down in the lineup but I think deals will be made. I wouldn’t be surprised if Whitney is dealt, here’s to hoping he starts the season injury-free and very well. Maybe the Oilers pick up a guy that can hit clean AND strike fear into the opposition. The only top guy I’d like to see swapped is Gagner. You’d have to wonder if Edmonton could persuade Boston to part with Patrice Bergeron. Unlikely but an excellent 2nd line center.

  23. jonrmcleod says:

    What are the reasonable expectations for Eberle, Hall, RNH, Yakupov, Gagner, and a healthy Hemsky? I know some are predicting a regression in Eberle’s goal scoring, but I have to think if (IF!) all 6 of those guys stay relatively healthy this season, there will a substantial increase in goals. Will one of Hall or RNH take a Stamkos-like jump?

  24. jonrmcleod says:

    Traktor,

    So in your scenario, what happens to NK?

  25. justDOit says:

    jonrmcleod:
    Traktor,

    So in your scenario, what happens to NK?

    and Horcoff…?

  26. Jesse says:

    LT:
    “What a beautiful roster, maybe the last great Oiler team of my lifetime. ”

    …Gosh, you’re not sick are you?

  27. franksterra says:

    For anyone advocating Smytty-Horc-hemmer together to take on the ‘toughs’, i have 2 concerns and I’m interested in opinions.

    1) ‘Ol Smytty- Dec-April 2012, big decline in play. How much can we ride him?
    2) I worry that at least 1-2 of these three vets will quietly, even unconsciously, not be too happy with a) not playing with any of the exciting and talented Fab 4, and b) watching their stats take big hits as they wrestle the opponents best night after night.

  28. Gret99zky says:

    Jesse,

    Don’t we all hope that Whitney will be healthy? Wasn’t it a rut in the ice that caused all the damage last time around?

    Don’t we hope Hemsky will be healthy? And Smyth? And Smid? And Gagner? And Hall?

    215 man games lost to injury last season. How will we weather the storm this year?

    I mean besides crossing our fingers.

  29. Traktor says:

    jonrmcleod:
    Traktor,

    So in your scenario, what happens to NK?

    Waivers. Goes unclaimed. Refuses to report. Signs contract in Russia.

    justDOit: and Horcoff…?

    Amnesty Clause’d

  30. justDOit says:

    Traktor goes off the board with 4 rookies in the lineup – Pitlick, Yakupov, J Schultz and Klefbom (and Harsk’s close to a rookie, no?). I don’t dislike that lineup, but I can’t help wonder where you dumped the bodies. Might be a good guess of the 2013/14 lineup though.

  31. Ryan says:

    Woodguy,

    Yeah, I was thinking the EXACT d pairings.

    Let’s not forget the defensive pairing that was… Smid and Peckman. 2 stay at home guys who can’t move the puck was atrocious.

    I might try

    Nuge-Hall-Eberle (why mess with success)
    Gagner-Harsky-Yakupov
    2006 Cup run
    Belanger-Eager-PRV

  32. Lowetide says:

    Beer: I think Paajarvi can easily move up, in fact by opening night he might be in the Hartikainen slot. The Oilers will have Yakupov to find a sport for but that’s it so far this fall. Should mean MP gets a fair shake this time.

  33. Clay says:

    DBO,

    Didn’t Kruger bench Jones because he was a headless chicken South of his own blue line? Maybe I’m misremembering…

    I do still have the Kruger-coached BOA on the PVR, I think I’ll go re-watch it (for about the 10th time).

    I like WG’s lineup over LT’s, mostly because I think Magnus’ NHL future is going to be as a defensive winger who can put up 30+ as well. I just think he’s tailor-made for this role. He’s big enough to not get man-handled, his recovery speed is well documented, and since day 1 he’s displayed great defensive consciousness. In short, he’s the new generation’s Pisani.

    Might as well put him with the team’s two cagiest vets to foster that two way play. And if the pressure to perform offensively is removed, who knows, maybe his offense comes around.

    That being said, in his limited time in the NHL, Harski has struggled in a 4th line role, but has done better when given more minutes/better teammates, imho. I have absolutely no numbers to back this up, it’s just my impression :)

    Also, any way you stack it, you’re going to start the year with one of Whitney or N. Schultz on the third pairing. Even if Whitney is 80%, that still speaks to how much deeper this D is compared to every year since 05-06.

    I don’t know if the team will make the playoffs or not, but just the prospect of watching Oiler games where the defence isn’t total chaos for two out of every three shifts is exciting!

    Gagner – Hall – Eberle
    RNH – Harski – Yak
    Horcov – Hemmer – MPS
    Belanger – Smyth – Revolving Door

    Smid – Petry
    Schultz x2
    Whitney – Sutton

    Having Belanger and Smyth on the “fourth” line gives it the prospect of not being total suck. And, if one of Harski, MPS, or Yak are having an off night, you can just slot Smyth in to that line and you’re still ok.

    I’m also starting to think the D will be ok as is. They may or may not make the playoffs with this group, but one more year of experience for Smid, Petry, and Schultz Jr., and this lineup next year will be off the proverbial hizzy. Especially if Klefbom is the real deal and can slot into Sutton’s spot.

  34. BeerLeagueHero says:

    franksterra:
    For anyone advocating Smytty-Horc-hemmer together to take on the ‘toughs’, i have 2 concerns and I’m interested in opinions.

    1) ‘Ol Smytty- Dec-April 2012, big decline in play.How much can we ride him?
    2) I worry that at least 1-2 of these three vets will quietly, even unconsciously, not be too happy with a) not playing with any of the exciting and talented Fab 4, and b) watching their stats take big hits as they wrestle the opponents best night after night.

    I reckon that they’ll get their minutes on special teams. When’s the last time Smyth,Horcoff/Hemsky put up stats? I’d hope they buy in to being 3rd line players now and if they don’t they can sit or be moved. Next season you can bet that krueger will be leaning hard on hall/nuge/eberle. So i imagine they’ll get tough minutes along with smyth/horc/hemsky.

  35. Ryan says:

    Gret99zky,

    It was a rut, but he had prior issues/surgery. Cue Ashley…

    For Whitney, I don’t think ‘healthy’ means what you think it means. -”Steve Smith”

    As in, there’s no way ‘healthy’ for Whitney ever means 100%. If we’re lucky, it could mean 75% (1.5/2 ankles+feet).

  36. Jesse says:

    Gret99zky:
    Jesse,

    Don’t we all hope that Whitney will be healthy?Wasn’t it a rut in the ice that caused all the damage last time around?

    Don’t we hope Hemsky will be healthy?And Smyth?And Smid?And Gagner?And Hall?

    215 man games lost to injury last season.How will we weather the storm this year?

    I mean besides crossing our fingers.

    I’m going to be honest, I don’t understand your response. I was just pointing out something I saw, not commenting on what I hoped for. Although of course I do hope for the best.

  37. Ryan says:

    Traktor: Waivers. Goes unclaimed. Refuses to report. Signs contract in Russia.

    Amnesty Clause’d

    Traktor, we can hope for sure. Not sure MacT would let that happen.

  38. dessert1111 says:

    Presuming no additions or trades are made, though I’m sure there has to be (not enough roster spots):

    Hall-RNH-Eberle
    Hemsky-Gagner-Yakupov
    Smyth-Horcoff-Jones
    Hartikainen-Belanger-Eager
    HS: Petrell, Hordichuk

    Smid-Petry
    N. Schultz-J. Schultz
    Sutton-Whitney
    HS: Potter

    After some time I’d say Hartikainen takes a bump up the line-up and Hemsky goes down to the third line, Jones the fourth. I remember Krueger sat Jones when he was coaching so I hope that doesn’t mean he sits him this year/he gets traded–I’d much rather see Eager gone. I think PRV and Lander start the season in OKC. My bet is Peckham gets traded, too–he has more value than Potter and I think Potter’s the better player at this point, and I don’t see Peckham fitting into the future.

  39. Ducey says:

    Mine:

    Nuge – Yakupov – Eberle
    Gagner – Hall (if he is ready) – Hemsky
    HorCoff – Smyth – Belanger
    VDV- Eager – Jones
    HS: Hordi, Petrell

    Smid-Petry
    Whitney-N. Schultz
    Sutton – J. Schultz
    Potter

    Hall is unlikely to be ready for openind night so I’d replace him with Hartikanen.

    Giving MPS 5-8 minutes a night on the 4th line is just going to mess him up further. He is not ready to play the toughs on the 3rd. Keep him in OKC for goodness sakes.

    VDV has to clear waivers and I liked how he played at the end of the year. He adds some size and energy. Belanger played wing with Horcoff and Smyth and that line was able to do a better job of checking. Belanger can also move up and take some of Gagner’s faceoffs.

  40. Gret99zky says:

    Jesse,

    I guess what I’m saying is if I had a nickel for evertime someone posted about Player X (with injury history) staying healthy I could buy season tickets.

    But it never happens. There are always injuries. And the result, for this team, is usually a top 2 pick in next year’s draft.

  41. Woodguy says:

    Re: Hemsky with Horcoff
    - I don’t think they gave him $5Mx2 to play on a checking line. He’s still a sublime passer. Needs to play with Hall or Yak as Eberle and RNH should be a pair.

    Re; Jones
    -Krueger HS’d Jones then played him on the 4th. I’d expect that to continue

    Re: Whitney
    -he was being beat like a pylon on the outside because he can’t pivot and push on his right ankle. Happened in the last game or two of the year. I pray to the hockey and ankle tendon gods that he’s healed as he was a hell of a player and the best passer on the D. Elitie 1st pass. I just don’t think you can count on that injury improving. See: Forsburg, Peter.

  42. franksterra says:

    Woodguy,

    This was (the invisible!) part of my point above about Smyth-Horc-Hemmer.

  43. Jesse says:

    Woodguy,

    Yeah, i agree. I dont think he can be counted on either.

  44. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    THose old lineups are crazy. I’d forgotten half those names… not Cory Cross though… boat anchor, cemented to a bland Communist high-rise on the slummy out-skirts of town…

    I’m surprised to see Harti get the big push from you. That’s a lot of expectations for him… especially for a guy that has trouble out of the gate. his size will certainly help him though.

    Myself, I’m very partial to the

    Gags – Hall – Hemmer

    line. Hall and Hemmer seem to get each other.

    I’m also partial to putting the Schultzes together. I like the mentorship role for senior and I like the idea of the broadcasters getting confused.

  45. jake70 says:

    Man, I would think you have to get Hemsky up there with some offensively talented players. He’s waited so damn long and sounds like he will be competely healthy. Line 1 or 2. For Harski, I hope he understands the opportunity in front of him and is having himself the best offseason in terms of prep for the next season he has ever had.

  46. jonrmcleod says:

    jake70,

    He will at least get a chance to play with the young guys on the PP.

  47. jonrmcleod says:

    Question: When did we start calling Eberle, Hall, RNH, and Yakupov the “Fab Four”?

  48. justDOit says:

    jonrmcleod,

    Ever since ‘Four Horsemen of the Apuckolypse’ was deemed to be too wordy.

  49. scobes says:

    Woodguy,

    I think hemsky healthy with some natural scoring talent on his line is still a 1ppg guy. He deserves all the smack talk, but he has some of the very best hands in the NHL. He also needs value, because there is no way he has a spot in our salary in years to come. Hemsky haters love to hear this kind of talk. Lol

  50. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    jonrmcleod:
    Question: When did we start calling Eberle, Hall, RNH, and Yakupov the “Fab Four”?

    How about “The Fourth Way”

    (stupid philosophy; awesome fusion band)

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q7VlcqLEaDw

  51. Professor Q says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Plus it totally has an awesome potential moniker…The Steroid Line…

  52. nathan says:

    jonrmcleod,

    http://oilersnation.com/2012/4/23/completing-the-fab-four
    COMPLETING THE FAB FOUR Lowetide April 23 2012 08:11PM … Is there a chance the Oilers trade down and grab a defenseman as the final member of their draft “fab four?”

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/06/harvest-moon-5.html
    23 Jun 2012 – Old Oiler fans like me are reminded of the fab four who arrived 30+ years ago and cut through the NHL for a decade

    And it helps that Yakupov channels some Andy and some rock star:

    ‏@Bob_Stauffer: I have come to the conclusion that Nail Yakupov is a Rock Star! Looking forward to being on the tour this season

  53. Gret99zky says:

    They are more popular than Jesus.

  54. justDOit says:

    Gret99zky,

    Jordan is dead.

  55. nathan says:

    Those of you in the cheaper seats, clap your hands. And the rest of you just rattle your jewelry

  56. nathan says:

    justDOit,

    ATB’s covering that up, but his double is barefoot in the new commercial and we all know what that means. How long til someone photoshops the Abbey Road cover?

  57. hags9k says:

    I like the lineup LT. I might even love it. I think we will be in the playoffs, mostly due to a belief that Dubnyk is almost ready to turn dominant.

    I just think that healthy scratching Jones would be a mistake on the asset management side. If he isn’t solidly entrenched at 4RW, which I think he has earned, then he should be dealt. Don’t sit him and erode his stock.

  58. Gerta Rauss says:

    L-C-R

    Hall-Gagner-Hemsky
    Yak-Nuge-Eberle-sheltered minutes
    Smyth-Horcoff-x
    Eager-Belanger-Petrell

    N Schultz-x
    Smid-Petry
    Whitney-J Schultz

    DD
    NK

    Jones-package trade for 3RW
    Peckham-package trade for 1RD

    MPS Harski Lander OKC
    Sutton Potter Hordichuk HS

  59. hags9k says:

    Wouldn’t it be great if Gagner had such a season that even Traktor and DSF started calling it the fab 5?

  60. Professor Q says:

    hags9k,

    Aren’t those the gay fashion designers?

  61. jonrmcleod says:

    Gerta Rauss,

    Is Peckham the center piece in the deal for a 1RD? I’m pretty sure you’d have to give up at least Hemsky or Gagner or maybe a couple of the top OKC guys plus Peckham.

  62. jonrmcleod says:

    hags9k,

    Why not add the other 1st round pick (Paajarvi) and call them “The Sizzling Six”?

  63. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Clay: Also, any way you stack it, you’re going to start the year with one of Whitney or N. Schultz on the third pairing. Even if Whitney is 80%, that still speaks to how much deeper this D is compared to every year since 05-06.

    “Opening Night 2009

    •D1: Grebeshkov-Gilbert
    •D2: Souray-Staios
    •D3: Visnovsky-Smid

    “The mighty Quinn’s touch is on this roster. Lordy. I don’t know what to say. Lubo on the third pairing. Fuck off.”

    Lubo on the third pairing isn’t too bad either, Clay. That appeared to be a solid group of defenders, nice and deep, except Souray got hurt and all of Grebs-Lubo-Steady Steve purged at the deadline.

  64. Gerta Rauss says:

    jonrmcleod,

    It depends on how you define 1RD

    Is Peckham ++ going to get you Shea Weber or Keith Yandle…..no

    Is Peckham ++ going to get you a veteran D that can play top 4 minutes on the Edmonton Oilers–a team in the National Hockey League-…then yes

    I think a team that is looking to dump salary and/or add prospects picks might look at a trade like that…the same names that have been mentioned for weeks around here….Streit,Tyutin

    And Nick Schultz can play RD as well so a LD can be acquired as well

  65. stevezie says:

    Woodguy:
    Re: Hemsky with Horcoff
    - I don’t think they gave him $5Mx2 to play on a checking line.He’s still a sublime passer.Needs to play with Hall or Yak as Eberle and RNH should be a pair.

    True, but one of those RW is going to have to play on the third, and of them all I think Hemsky is in the best position to help the other two score. Hell, I think Smyth was a passable offensive player last year who got saddled with endless defensive assignments.

    I would expect that the vets get rotated in to scoring positions. Everyone likes to score.

    I think it’s obvious we could still use one good C/LW and one good D, but as is things aren’t apocalyptic. Looking at those old teams, there were years with good D, and years with good forwards (I’d argue the forward corps improved the year after the cup run, but played in fornt of the worst bunch of defenceman I’ve ever seen, after injuries), but no years with both. That should be a lesson to management: it all needs to be good.

    Is there any way Omark reports to an Oilers camp? If so does he have a hope in hell of making the team, or is he strictly first call-up? I wonder what Kruger thinks of him.

  66. Buchburgler says:

    Bring back Grebeskhov!!!

  67. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    stevezie,

    “Is there any way Omark reports to an Oilers camp? If so does he have a hope in hell of making the team, or is he strictly first call-up? I wonder what Kruger thinks of him.”

    speaking of this, can someone give me the run down on his options? can he just sign with someone in Europe… or is he obliged to get the say-so from the Oil, or what’s his exact contract situation?

  68. hags9k says:

    Professor Q,

    I was thinking of Michigan hoops fame but whatever floats yer boat.

  69. Lois Lowe says:

    My lines are (following the LT standard line notation of CLR):

    Gagner – Hall – Hemsky (PvP)
    Nuge – Smyth – Eberle (2nd toughs)
    Horcoff – MPS – Yak
    Belanger – Petrell – Jones

    PB: Harski, Hordichuk, Eager

    I see Yak sitting for Jones on D zone faceoffs at times and making up the time on the PP.

    Smid Petry
    N.Schultz Whitney
    Sutton J.Schultz

    PB: Potter, Peckman

  70. speeds says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    stevezie,

    “Is there any way Omark reports to an Oilers camp? If so does he have a hope in hell of making the team, or is he strictly first call-up? I wonder what Kruger thinks of him.”

    speaking of this, can someone give me the run down on his options? can he just sign with someone in Europe… or is he obliged to get the say-so from the Oil, or what’s his exact contract situation?

    I think there’s a decent chance that Omark just signs his qualifier and reports to camp.

    His agent may tell him that, even if he’s not in EDM’s plans, there’s a pretty good chance someone will pick him up on waivers even if EDM doesn’t keep him. I’m sure he’d rather have a one way deal, but if he’s relatively sure someone would claim him off waivers I don’t know how big a deal that would be to him.

  71. Woodguy says:

    stevezie,

    True, but one of those RW is going to have to play on the third, and of them all I think Hemsky is in the best position to help the other two score.

    Hemsky can play LW if need be, Eberle too.

    Many Euro’s learn to play the game on the off wing (ie. PRV, Yak) so they grow up with sticks in the middle instead of on the boards.

    For some reason North American coaches move them to the board side as soon as they get here.

    Given Motivational Ralph’s euro experience he probably won’t have an issue with it either.

  72. stevezie says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    No one seemed to mind this time when Radulov went to russia, so I assume that Omark could as well, as both are RFA.

    I hope things work out for him.

  73. uni says:

    Neither here nor there, but if anyone wants to see a possible projection for Nail Yakupov in 2-3 years it might be interesting to follow Vladimir Tarasenko’s upcoming season for the Blues. As much noise as people are making about Yakupov, Granlund, etc. for the Calder, Tarasenko is 2 years older and has been playing in the KHL against men since he was 16. 5’11″ 200lbs plus, and his assets are his blazing speed and blistering shot. Scouting reports are very similar to Yakupov.

    As soon as Yakupov’s name started coming up as potential 1st overall in 2012 I started thinking how much he reminded me of Tarasenko. He was rated as in the top 3 right with Hall and Seguin for offense in 2010 and you’d have to think he only dropped because of the Russian question, even though he’d stated continuously his goal was the NHL and he’s been dreaming of it since he was a kid. Put up 24 points his draft year, had an injured shoulder the year after and ran in place, then pumped in 38pts in 39 games before being traded and ended the year with 9pts in 15 games. I was really hoping the Oil would trade up to grab him as he fell, as it turns out it was St. Lois who did to nab him at 16th.

    Other interesting sidenote, Ottawa traded the 16th overall pick for David Rundblad in 2010, then last season flipped Rundblad and their 2nd round pick to Phoenix for Kyle Turris. So it works out to Vladimir Tarasenko and the 2012 45th overall pick for Kyle Turris. I think Tarasenko is going to pan out better than Turris, so we’ll see, still think Ottawa should have just drafted Tarasenko in 2010 and counted themselves lucky.

  74. striatic says:

    so we are going with ..

    Hall – John
    Eberle – Paul
    Nuge – George
    Yakupov – Ringo

    ?

  75. uni says:

    striatic,

    Wait, so Hall is the one that’s going to break up the band?

  76. justDOit says:

    striatic,

    Krueger = Brian Epstein

    McT = George Martin

    ? = Yoko

  77. Rondo says:

    Does it make any sense to pick up in free agency or trades band aid players that won’t be with the team past 2yrs. The only reason to do this is if Edmonton is a potential playoff team which at the moment I doubt it ,they have a better chance of being a lottery pick team than a playoff team.

    If Oilers are building towards the future and not for tomorrow I’m all for it. But if not I’d rather have a high draft pick in 2013.

  78. nathan says:

    striatic,

    MPS = Pete Best? LT was more thinking

    RNH = 99
    Hall = 11
    Eberle = 17
    Yakupov = 9

  79. DBO says:

    Good to see Willis agrees with me on Rozsival:

    http://oilersnation.com/2012/7/5/why-not-michal-rozsival

    Solid top 4 RH vet. Solidifies out back end (yes some question marks on health) but makes us deeper and better and gives us insurance if Whitney or Shultz don’t work out due to health or youth. And it costs us no people to get him, allowing us to use our younger depth for a deal closer to deadline if we are in it.

  80. CrazyCoach says:

    Jesse: I think Whitney’s ankle is improving, albeit slowly and possibly never to the degree we/he’d like. I went to a couple games late in the season and watched his turning and crossovers specifically because I remembered you mention his limitations you’d noticed earlier in the season. I did notice him successfully pivot and also cross over off of both sides. It wasn’t the prettiest smoothest movement, but it was at the very least a successful manouver.

    As one who has suffered probably every sprain, fracture, and trauma to their ankles over the years, and from what I’ve seen from behind the bench, ankles are notoriously slow to heal, slow to return to 100% mobility, and slow for a player to return to 100% in terms of mental readiness. The hard part in rehabilitation of an ankle is that you never quite feel confident in its strength, so you some times alter your skating which can lead to imbalances, etc. There’s also the issue of protection for the ankle as well. Outside of Skate Fenders (wonderful devices) there is no protection for the ankle and the vulnerability is tough for a player to overcome.

    I know if I were Krueger, or the head trainer, I would insist Whitney wear Skate Fender ankle guards. If for nothing else, the placebo effect might work.

  81. stevezie says:

    DBO,

    You mean you and Willis both agree with me. I don’t know why I don’t get more credit for this idea, i’ve wondered it to myself like four times this week.

    Obviously only if the contract is right blah blah blah

  82. Maverick says:

    Woodguy:
    stevezie,

    True, but one of those RW is going to have to play on the third, and of them all I think Hemsky is in the best position to help the other two score.

    Hemsky can play LW if need be, Eberle too.

    Many Euro’s learn to play the game on the off wing (ie. PRV, Yak) so they grow up with sticks in the middle instead of on the boards.

    For some reason North American coaches move them to the board side as soon as they get here.

    Given Motivational Ralph’s euro experience he probably won’t have an issue with it either.

    Agreed. Hemsky in my Mock line up would either be the 1st or 2nd LW. He played LW in the World Championship. If Hall is at Center than Hemsky is the 1st LW. Hemsky and Yakupov would be dynamite but I would worry about the defensive coverage if both play together, but on the PP I would have them as a pair.

  83. Gret99zky says:

    nathan:
    justDOit,

    ATB’s covering that up, but his double is barefoot in the new commercial and we all know what that means. How long til someone photoshops the Abbey Road cover?

    Had to be done.

    Luckily I’m on vacation and have some time on my hands.

    http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/picture.php?albumid=1000&pictureid=11015

  84. justDOit says:

    Renny hired by the Wings as assistant coach. Good for Tom.

  85. Gerta Rauss says:

    stevezie,

    …and DBO

    Rozsival would fit in my lineup as well. I hope he has all his marbles after that Brown hit.

    I think they’ll look at trades first however-they’ve got too many bodies right now.

  86. DBO says:

    stevezie,

    I have as well. great (or strange) minds think alike.

    And Tom Renney signs a 3 yr deal as an associate coach in Detroit. Good for him. Detroit adds smart people all the time, he’ll do well there.

  87. voxwah says:

    Sugartits = Yoko

  88. nathan says:

    Gret99zky,

    What took you so long? I checked 5 times since dropping that hint. :)

    Nice. Let LT know he can use it on his next Fab 4 post.

  89. Gret99zky says:

    LT,

    use this in your next Fab 4 post.

    http://hfboards.hockeysfuture.com/picture.php?albumid=1000&pictureid=11015

    Thanks,

    Gret99zky and Nathan.

    Done

  90. jonrmcleod says:

    I asked Ryan Whitney on Twitter how his ankle was. He didn’t answer my question but thanked me for my well wishes.

  91. nathan says:

    jonrmcleod,

    What. No x-ray twitpics?

  92. Woodguy says:

    Eric T at NHL Numbers has an excellent article on shot quality:

    http://nhlnumbers.com/2012/7/3/shot-quality-matters-but-how-much

    Sums up the arguments nicely, and David Johnson chimes in as well in the comments. His site http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/ is a phenomenal resource as well, especially for WOWY stuff.

    David argues that shot quality matters more than some guys think, but agrees its more on an individual level than team level.

    Eric T also had a ground breaking article and research on shot differential and how its correlated to scoring chance differential here:

    http://nhlnumbers.com/2012/6/26/shot-quality-revisited-a-look-at-the-correlation-between-scoring-chances-and-shot-totals

    Basically Eric found a 80-85% correlation between shot data and scoring chance data.

    18 teams had their scoring chances logged last year which allowed for this kind of analysis.

    So now if you know the shot differential of a player (logged by the NHL official stats and easily accessible for compilation), you can make inferences to scoring chances with some certainty. (i.e. if a player out shots his competition, he is a good player who helps you win)

    Couple with all this that Gabe is tracking how teams out shoot each other in various game states:

    http://behindthenet.ca/fenwick_2011.php?sort=6&section=close

    And there is a pile of information we never had before.

    So awesome.

  93. Woodguy says:

    nathan,

    MPS = Pete Best?

    First thing that came to me.

  94. bendelson says:

    Gret99zky,

    Shit. How good is Eberle going to be once he kicks the cigarettes!

  95. prairieschooner says:

    Theo Peckham has a great opportunity to to be a regular in the Oiler line up.
    He needs to find his fitness and get back to playing the way he did last season when he was considered one of the Oilers best D men.
    We keep suggesting trades that throw Peckham in.
    He was our most physical Dman last year and was playing better and better.
    He needs Fitness and Confidence.Coach Kruger hopefully can turn him around

  96. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Thanks for the trip down nightmare lane LT. Wow, 2006 and on was just throw an unbalanced roster out there and hopefully none of them struggle and we’ll be fine. That 2007 team really underperformed though.

    Well, you can pretty much count on 3-5 players in your opening lineup not meeting expectations. At that point you hope the rest of the team is overachieving, you see what you have for depth, or look for trades to address need. ST and KLowe failed in all areas.

    Anyways – I asked this before, but is everyone satisfied with center ice? I enjoy reading these roster makeup discussions, but I’m surprised to see minimal concern in this area. LT talks about roster balance all the time, but the most unbalanced parts of the roster at this point is at C and G IMO.

    Is the task of addressing C so daunting that the only way to address it is to be so solid on the wings that the issue at center diminishes?

    Eventually this team needs an 06 Peca, Patrice Bergeron, or better yet a Jordan Stall and I don’t see it anywhere in their system.

  97. hunter1909 says:

    Edmonton should offer Paulina Gretzky the keys to the City or something.

  98. CrazyCoach says:

    hunter1909: Edmonton should offer Paulina Gretzky the keys to the City or something.

    Dare I ask what she would offer the city?

  99. Kris11 says:

    I still think those 2007 amd 2008 lineups weren’t as bad as they performed. A good GM could’ve retooled those teams without a multi-year tank job. Smart signings, good professional scouting, etc. Instead we had a bad GM who cheated and took the easy path of tanking.

    Finally, we have gone through the tank job and its time to make the playoffs (or at least get close) or fire the GM(s).

    It is that time isn’t it? I mean, if they can’t build a team around this core that has a strong shot at the playoffs, the media should push for their dismisal, right? Right?

    Right?

  100. Gerta Rauss says:

    SK Oiler Fan,

    The C position is a mess, but I think we have to discern between what SHOULD happen, and what WILL happen.

    Horcoff is here for another year for sure…maybe we can move that contract next year with 2 years left and the cap higher than actual salary-we’ll see.

    Belanger is staying-we heard the GM say that Krueger is going to “fix” him.

    Gagner…maybe he gets dealt for a D here shortly…I doubt it personally…I think we’ll see 1 or 2 small moves in the next week or 2 and then next stop is training camp.

  101. Gerta Rauss says:

    prairieschooner,

    I like Peckham and his physical play–something this team sorely lacks–but where does he play..?

    I think the Sutton and Potter signings(and now J Schultz) sealed his fate. He’s waiver eligible now as well.

    I like Theo, I think it’s just bad timing for the guy.

    **queue Blue Rodeo song**

  102. Kris11 says:

    The current core has a an ES destroying 30-40 goal player in Hall. A proven ES, top line player in Hemsky. Three of the best young offensive players in the league: RNH, Eberle, and Yakupov, any of which or even all of whom could pop 70 points.Two College d-men who can play the PP and play well at ES as long as theyget some help. An excellent defensive D-man on a value contract in Smid. A solid 50 point centerman in Gagner.

    Oh yeah, and they have 20MM in cap space to sign three players. (Not including Yak.)

    The rest of the lineup is controversial. I’d argue Horcoff and Belanger bring a ton. They have tough guys for the bottom of the roster if you like that sort of thing. They have players and prospects that can be traded and have trade value if needed: MPS, Pitlick, Hamilton, Musil, etc. etc. A lot of teams have a middle part of the lineup with mixed value guys, Dallas, Phoenix, Calgary, Chicago, Etc. But there are players in here to ensure a top PP and PK and solid faceoff guys. Dpp

    And There is reasonable interest in FA’s coming here, as we’ve seen with Schultz the younger, Belanger, Eager, etc. Some might need an overpay, but we can afford some short term over pays. This isn’t the FA deadzone that was implied post-Heatley.

    Seriously, if a good GM can take Phoenix and Nashville and the like into playoff contention, a minimally competent ine should be able to form a team around this core that gets into the playoffs.

  103. Cactus says:

    A few thoughts on these various lineup combinations:

    Woodguy,

    You’re one of the strongest commentators on these boards, but you’ve managed to go off the rails a bit with this Whitney stuff. Required reading:

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2012/06/04/ryan-whitney-was-a-train-wreck-in-2011-12-but-is-there-reason-for-optimism/

    By most metrics and by eye, Whitney was improving by the end of the year. He’s certainly good enough to be an important contributor in our top 6 right now. Of course, given his injury history, we can’t bet on 82 games from him, but that means Whitney insurance, NOT Whitney replacement. Year long IR? C’mon man!

    That said, you’re absolutely right about RNH with Eberle. The WOWYs are very compelling.

    As for the various posters who have talked about power vs. power, alternatively using Horc-Smyth-Hemsky or Hall-Gagner-Hemsky, please keep in mind that only holds true for 41 games. For the 41 games on the road, our strength vs. strength line will likely be the most successful line filled with the kids. As such, ensuring some scoring balance in the top 2 lines will be critical.

    Finally, I think a lot of our line combinations will be heavily influenced by whether or not Krueger wants someone to play on his off-wing. If Hemsky or Yakupov is fine on the LW, then that changes the exercise of line building.

  104. stevezie says:

    Woodguy:
    nathan,

    MPS = Pete Best?

    First thing that came to me.

    Ha! Perfect. This would make Omark John’s friend in Nowhere Boy who quit the band to become a policeman?

  105. nathan says:

    stevezie,

    Schremp could also be Leppo (from the Rutles) who “mainly stood at the back” and “crawled inside a trunk with a small German fräulein and was never heard from again”

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Rutles#All_You_Need_Is_Cash_version_.281978.29

  106. Kris11 says:

    My ideal opening night lineup (in order of toughness of minutes):

    Hall-Gagner-Hemsky/Eberle
    Winnik (or similiar)-Horcoff-Hemsky/Eberle
    Smyth-Nuge-Yakupov
    Eager-Belanger-Jones
    MPS/Harti

    Smid-Petry
    Colaiacovo(or similiar)-Schultz
    Whitney-Schultz
    Sutton

    Dubnyk
    Huet/Danis/Anyone-on-a-one-year-deal
    Khabi(He doesn’t play and we carry the cap hit)

    There are lots of guys you could add on one year deals at bigg-ish dollars that could help, other than Winnik or Colaiacovo, some of whom could be picked up for middling prospects and picks. Thats Tamblowtavish’s job now and it isn’t that hard. You pick a goalie. None of them are great, but all of them are better than Drinkanddriveov, and sometimes goalies surprise.

    Do your jobs GM’s.

  107. Doug McLachlan says:

    Having fun shifting the lego pieces around to be sure but haven’t settled on what I wan’t to do yet.

    Like Winnik and Colaiacovo as potential additions
    Kris11,

    But I am ok with rolling with Dubnyk and Khabibulin in net. We are in NK’s last year of a contract and, if memory serves, he has a history of overperforming in the last year of contracts, does he not? If he captures his October form through 25 games all season long – we will not be complaining about his performance. We may even be able to peddle him to some team making a run.

    #gmshaveshortmemories

  108. Woodguy says:

    Cactus,

    Woodguy,

    You’re one of the strongest commentators on these boards, but you’ve managed to go off the rails a bit with this Whitney stuff. Required reading:

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2012/06/04/ryan-whitney-was-a-train-wreck-in-2011-12-but-is-there-reason-for-optimism/

    By most metrics and by eye, Whitney was improving by the end of the year. He’s certainly good enough to be an important contributor in our top 6 right now. Of course, given his injury history, we can’t bet on 82 games from him, but that means Whitney insurance, NOT Whitney replacement. Year long IR? C’mon man!

    I’m just planning for the worst.

    Relying on him for anything past 30 games on the 3rd pair is just bad management.

    Like I said earlier:

    . I pray to the hockey and ankle tendon gods that he’s healed as he was a hell of a player and the best passer on the D. Elitie 1st pass. I just don’t think you can count on that injury improving.

  109. uni says:

    stevezie: Ha! Perfect. This would make Omark John’s friend in Nowhere Boy who quit the band to become a policeman?

    Only you can’t leave a band you were never actually given a chance to be a part of.

  110. Woodguy says:

    Rondo:
    Does it make any sense to pick up in free agency or tradesband aid players that won’t be with the team past 2yrs.The only reason to do this is if Edmonton is a potential playoff team which at the moment I doubtit ,they have a better chance of being a lottery pick team than a playoff team.

    If Oilers are building towards the future and not for tomorrow I’m all for it. But if not I’d rather have a high draft pick in 2013.

    Nothing wrong with short term contract for future flexibility.

    The Oilers should be done with losing for picks.

    Can’t tank forever, clock is ticking on the kids, you only are guaranteed to have them for 7 years and after this year that leave 4 years.

    They may get them on a long term contract, but the team better start winning if they expect anyone to sign here long term.

    Willy LIdstrom, Dave Hannan, Norm Lacombe and others have Oiler Stanley Cup rings.

    Everyone doesn’t have to be around long term.

    Just the core group.

  111. nathan says:

    uni,

    Jimmie Nichol then. Got a short try out when Starr was on IR. Returned to obscurity afterwards.

  112. speeds says:

    The window for players to file for arbitration ended at 3pm today. The window for Clubs to file for arbitration with Players is from 3 pm today until 3pm tomorrow. Anyone think the Oilers file for arb with any of their players? I would with both Petry and Gagner.

    Well, Petry for sure, Gagner most likely but I guess it depends on talks – filing for arb would protect both from offer sheets.

  113. nzoilerfan says:

    Hopkins – Hall – Eberle
    Gagner – Hemsky – Yakupov
    Horcoff – Smyth – (?Winnick/similar?)
    Belanger – Eager – Jones
    Petrell/Hordichuk

    Smid – Petry
    Schultz – Schultz
    Whitney – Sutton
    Potter

    Dubnyk
    Khabibulin

    I’m hopeful we bring in a Winnick but not holding my breath, Jones and petrell would move up IMO. Not holding my breath for any more defensive help either unless Klefbom decides to stay (unlikely).

    Peckham and Omark are the ones on the out and needing a trade. I’d just send to whatever team offers the most even if it ends up being poor value. Better than losing them to waivers.

  114. speeds says:

    Oilers tweet Dubnyk signed for 2 years. Any guesses on money?

    I’ll guess 2 mil per.

  115. justDOit says:

    speeds:
    Oilers tweet Dubnyk signed for 2 years.Any guesses on money?

    I’ll guess 2 mil per.

    I guess $2,000,000.01 per year.

  116. "Steve Smith" says:

    justDOit,

    One dollar, Bob.

  117. slopitch says:

    7 million over 2 years is what I’m hearing…

  118. "Steve Smith" says:

    slopitch,

    That’s high, but I think $2 million per was probably optimistic.

  119. Kris11 says:

    25 years, 100MM.

  120. Kris11 says:

    Think of how great that deal would look in 23 yeras, what with inflation and all.

  121. slopitch says:

    I think my number is accurate. Or my source is bullshit

    That would be an overpay if you ask me

  122. rickithebear says:

    D. perron: signed 15.25M over 4 years.

  123. Ducey says:

    Kris11: Think of how great that deal would look in 23 yeras, what with inflation and all.

    Thats what Mr Wang said.

  124. justDOit says:

    speeds:
    Oilers tweet Dubnyk signed for 2 years.Any guesses on money?

    I’ll guess 2 mil per.

    justDOit: I guess $2,000,000.01 per year.

    “Steve Smith”:
    justDOit,

    One dollar, Bob.

    Looks like I win the showcase – Brenda, show me what I won!

  125. "Steve Smith" says:

    slopitch,

    Sorry, when I said that was high, I wasn’t questioning the number’s accuracy, just its suitability (in which respect we appear to be on the same page).

  126. Kris11 says:

    “That’s what Mr. Wang said”

    Uh Ducey, does your penis often talk to you?

  127. Jesse says:

    I’m not sold on this, but Rask and Schneider didn’t play as many games as Dubnyk, and I wonder what their numbers would have looked like behind Cam Barker, Corey Potter, and Ryan Whitney.

    I think if he’s In the same ballpark as them it’s not disgraceful.

  128. "Steve Smith" says:

    justDOit,

    No, no, no, you know in advance what you’ve won – it’s up there on stage as you’re bidding.

    I demand that my flippant gameshow analogies be scrupulously accurate.

    (I am a lot of fun at parties. Or at least I would be if I was ever invited to any.)

  129. justDOit says:

    I’m on board with keeping Dubbie happy. If he plays behind Tippet’s ‘Yotes system, his numbers would have earned him more than $2M/yr.

    With $7M over 2 years, LowBellTavish is saying “Sorry for the tanking, but stick with us here.”

  130. justDOit says:

    “Steve Smith”,

    As I say to my chiropractor, “I stand corrected.”

    Edit: But as I come down from the dizzying high of being a winner, I will have to admit that when Brenda initially presented the showcase, I was staring at… something else. So now I get to jump up on stage with her, so she can show me around.

  131. "Steve Smith" says:

    justDOit,

    As I say to my chiropractor, “What am I doing here? Your entire discipline is quackery!”

    (“Entire discipline” is admittedly overstating it somewhat.)

  132. rickithebear says:

    Halak 3.75M .918 SV%
    Lehtonen 3.55M .918 SV%
    backstrom 6.0M .917 SV%
    Niemi 3.8M .917 SV%
    Theodore 1.5M .916 SV%
    Miller 6.25M .916 Sv%
    Jonas Hiller at 4.5 .916 SV%
    Varlamov 2.83M .916 Sv%
    Dubnyk 1.2M .915 SV%
    Miika Kiprusoff at 5.6 .914 SV%
    Howard 2.25M .914 Sv%

    He was .920 sv% from Jan. on.

  133. DBO says:

    now petry on 2 yr deal. well, Tambo to work then

  134. Professor Q says:

    And Petry is signed as well? Anyone have the terms to that? Hope Gagner is next.

  135. OilLeak says:

    Woodguy:
    Projected 11-12 Opening Night


    L1: Nuge-Hartikainen-Eberle L2: Gagner-Hall-Yakupov L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky L4: Belanger-Eager-Paajarvi HS: Jones, Hordichuk D1: Smid-Petry D2: Whitney-J Schultz D3: Sutton-N Schultz HS: Peckham G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    Ihad a coffee with Woodguy yesterday and his influence is on the line combinations.

    Apparently I didn’t influence you enough.

    Mine are:

    L1: Nuge-Yakupov-Eberle L2: Gagner-Hall-Hemsky L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Paajarvi L4: Belanger-Eager- Harski HS: Petrell, Hordichuk D1: Smid-Petry D2: Shultz-J Schultz D3: Whitney-Sutton HS: Peckham G1: Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    I think there is a real chance that Whitney is IR all season if he still can’t turn.

    I’d pick up a 1LD and push Smid and N.Shultz down a slot.

    Forwards are going to go out for a D and I think its Paajarviand/or Jones +?

    Reasonable trade partners (teams with D looking for F) could be NJD, PHX, CBJ.

    I like the line-up, the third line would look really good with Winnik on it, would have the potential to draw even with the toughs. I would put Paajarvi on the 4th line instead of Hartikainen as I haven’t seen enough from Hartikainen yet to believe he’s ready for a full time NHL role. I would like to see a full year of domination in the AHL from Hartikainen first.

  136. CrazyCoach says:

    Gerta Rauss: prairieschooner,
    I like Peckham and his physical play–something this team sorely lacks–but where does he play..?

    Well hopefully he’s playing in a gym somewhere right now. Last season’s Teddy Peckham looked like he ate the previous season’s Teddy Peckham.

  137. DBO says:

    And Perron just got 4 years just under $4 mill. Perron is a good comparable. So prob get close to that for gagner

  138. OilLeak says:

    I would have liked to see Petry on a longer term deal to establish some value going forward. Petry is going to get paid on his next contract.

    Going to be difficult to keep this team together in a few years.

  139. DBO says:

    OilLeak,

    agreed, but Oilers twitter feed said 2 years. no money yet

  140. justDOit says:

    OilLeak,

    Well that’s when the Holmgren strategy will be employed. Turning over a couple of high end players for some younger players to keep the ball rolling, and stay under the cap. Of course, it might blow up and those players you trade will win the Cup.

  141. DBO says:

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@NHL_Oilers
    Devan Dubnyk’s contract is 2 years AAV $3.5 million while Jeff Petry’s deal is 2 years AAV $1.75 million

  142. "Steve Smith" says:

    DBO,

    Jesus – if you’d told me that Petry’d be making half Dubnyk’s money I’d have…well, I’d have made some asinine comment, because that’s how I respond to virtually any stimulus. That Petry signing is terrific.

  143. DBO says:

    “Steve Smith”,

    I wonder if that puts Petry at UFA afterwards? I know Dubnyk is a UFA after the 2 years, not sure on Petry. Well, looks like cup run #1 timeline is 2 years. Afterwards we shed a ton of contracts and I guess they keep who they want. Hard to see this current roster as a cup contender. Hope Tambo picks up some NHLers and fast.

  144. leadfarmer says:

    1 mil underpayment on Petry, 1 mil overpayment on Dubnyk. Not bad.

  145. Kris11 says:

    That Dubnyk deal seems really horrible. IIf the defense is “Keep Duby happy” then why did they stiff Petry and not gove him a big “keep you happy” bounus.

    You might say that comarable goalies are getting similar amounts, but its unclear if they’re really comparable. And I dare anyone to tell me there was a chance someone might offer sheet Dubnyk at 3.5MM/year.

    Ultimately, it’s not the end of the world, but its a sign that management can’t reliably get value contracts.

  146. OilLeak says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    DBO,

    Jesus – if you’d told me that Petry’d be making half Dubnyk’s money I’d have…well, I’d have made some asinine comment, because that’s how I respond to virtually any stimulus.That Petry signing is terrific.

    The stupid contracts handed out to goaltenders this off-season are to blame. 3.5 million and only signed for 2 years, terrible value. How does a back-up goaltender till this point deserve 3.5 million dollars?

    Petry contract is nice value, but it’s too short, both of these signings do not set the Oilers for value down the road. Dubnyk will have to take a substantial step forward to earn his contract and Petry is only value for 2 years before he’ll get paid. Who’s managing the managing the cap situation in Edmonton again? Horrible

  147. "Steve Smith" says:

    DBO:
    “Steve Smith”,

    I wonder if that puts Petry at UFA afterwards?

    nhlnumbers says not, but they’ve been wrong before. I’ll consult something more authoritative this evening, if I get around to it.

  148. Traktor says:

    Edmonton is now paying 7.25M for two backup goalies.

    Luongo’s cap hit is 5.33M

    MacT must have called in sick.

  149. Kris11 says:

    And if you think Dubnyk is likely to be that good that you give him 3.5, why not lock him down through some UFA terms. Weird. Weird and dumb.

  150. stevezie says:

    "Steve Smith":
    justDOit,

    As I say to my chiropractor, “What am I doing here?Your entire discipline is quackery!”

    (“Entire discipline” is admittedly overstating it somewhat.)

    True story: I was a skeptic but my dad finally convinced me to see his Chiro. Sure enough, my knee started to feel much better. Then, on one of my last visits, the guy mentions how he has read stories of amazing things happening and afterwards feathers were found on the scene, but not feathers of birds, strange feathers! He has seen pictures of the feathers (on the internet!), and considers this evidence of angels. He was not joking.

    He is a doctor, and my knee does feel better… but what the hell am I supposed to make of that?

  151. "Steve Smith" says:

    OilLeak: Petry contract is nice value, but it’s too short,

    Well, presumably Petry was asking for a large premium on additional years – I don’t blame him for asking for it, nor do I blame the Oilers for not giving it to him. Obviously a four year contract at $2 million/year would have been better than this one, but I think it’s a safe bet that that wasn’t on the table.

    I have no complaints about the Petry contract at all, especially if he’s still an RFA at its conclusion.

  152. slopitch says:

    What do I win?!? ;)

  153. Kris11 says:

    Ron Paul is a doctor, too. He’s an MD, even.

    Your knee feels better because of the placebo effect, which is awesome -I’m quite serious- for treating pain of all kinds.

  154. nathan says:

    Kris11,

    It’s not the prospect of offer sheets, but the recent signings the arbitrator would use that both parties are staring at.

  155. stevezie says:

    Kris11,

    O I know. Of all the effects out there, the placebo is one of my favourites. I was happy to bill insurance for a good placebo.

  156. nathan says:

    Kris11,

    Placebo plus whatever a physical therapist could have done. Mind you many physical therapy practices also seem to have some side angle to meet the demand for placebos too.

  157. Kris11 says:

    To me, the Dubnyk overpay shows the problem with management more generally.They get excited about Dubnyk and think he’s an awesome goalie. So they pay him what they think he will deserve now that he’s met his potential.

    But that’s not how you get value contracts. (I mean, on occasion, you might reward guys with small bonuses and overpays here and there, but not like this.) “Pisani and Roloson are awesome players now. They have shown the potential we see in them, They are top-notch players and deserve to be paid a top-notch salary.” Oy.

    You pay a guy as little as possible that is necessary to keep him, trying to get as many of his RFA years locked down. You don’t just drop the money on the guy because you think the money will make him a 3.5MM goalie (not a UFA, mind you).

    Blah!

  158. OilLeak says:

    “Steve Smith”,

    Yes Petry is still an RFA, but would the premium Edmonton have to pay him now for those UFA years be more beneficial than paying him large dollars down the road? I would say yes. Where are the value contracts going to come from on this team? The young core are going to need contract extensions in a few years and management has been paying everyone at full or premium value.

    To top it off the Oilers just paid an unproven goaltender money in hopes that he is a quality starter. Screw them, screw them all, fire the whole lot of them.

  159. nathan says:

    So they pay him what they think he will deserve now that he’s met his potential.

    Kris11,

    No, They pay close to what they think an arbitrator will pay. And that price is set by the average GM losing his mind.

  160. Traktor says:

    Schneider career .928
    Rask career .926
    Dubnyk career .910

  161. Cactus says:

    Kris11:
    And if you think Dubnyk is likely to be that good that you give him 3.5, why not lock him down through some UFA terms. Weird. Weird and dumb.

    Did it ever occur to you that the player may want more money than that if you’re buying UFA years? As has been documented on this board, Dubnyk’s numbers are starter quality and if you only look at his time since January, they’re top-15 starter numbers.

    Goalies are getting ridiculous money this offseason. This is definitely an overpay, but certainly not as much as you’re making it out to be. Besides, they saved a bucket on the Petry deal so they’ probably come out ahead.

  162. Kris11 says:

    nathan:
    Kris11,

    It’s not the prospect of offer sheets, but the recent signings the arbitrator would use that both parties are staring at.

    What are the odds that the arbitrator would’ve given the Oilers a worse deal than this? I mean, maybe he gives them a similar deal, or maybe slightly more. But man, Dubnyk hasn’t been great at all, and there’s a chance even an arbitrator gives him somewhat less. Going to arbitration to risk an overpaid salary is worth it if the other option is just giving the player that overpay without arbitration.

    And was Duby eligible for arbitration?

  163. Woodguy says:

    Gagner files for arbiration.

    DD contract makes no sense.

  164. CrazyCoach says:

    OilLeak: Going to be difficult to keep this team together in a few years.

    I think that is going to be the norm in the league for quite a few years under a salary cap structure. As JustDoIt said, you need to be able to manage all assets and get maximum value on each. You will lose some and lose some.

    I would love to see this team stick together as well, but I’m also realistic that market demands, differing personalities, and poor management/coaching decisions will tear it apart.

    Like many of you, I picked those “Boys on the Bus” teams to win at least 3-4 more cups, but August 9, 1988 forever changed the rules for sports.

  165. nathan says:

    Kris11,

    Dubnyk is eligible. If the odds are even on the arbitrator’s swing both parties have done a good job. If the odds run in one direction someone screwed up. If it’s close it’s generally best to avoid arbitration if you want the guy as your starter.

    I don’t like the dollar figure, but then I don’t like goalie salary figures in general. Wish you could rent them by the month.

  166. CrazyCoach says:

    Woodguy: Gagner files for arbiration.

    Gagner’s camp will show his game against Chicago, while Tambo will show the footage from the other 80 games.

  167. Traktor says:

    AHL

    Schneider
    .916
    .928
    .919

    Rask
    .905
    .920

    Dubnyk
    .904
    .906
    .915

  168. Kris11 says:

    “Halak 3.75M .918 SV%
    Lehtonen 3.55M .918 SV%
    backstrom 6.0M .917 SV%
    Niemi 3.8M .917 SV%
    Theodore 1.5M .916 SV%
    Miller 6.25M .916 Sv%
    Jonas Hiller at 4.5 .916 SV%
    Varlamov 2.83M .916 Sv%
    Dubnyk 1.2M .915 SV%
    Miika Kiprusoff at 5.6 .914 SV%
    Howard 2.25M .914 Sv%”

    Thanks for the list Rikki.

    I think there’s a very good chance that an arbitrator would’ve seen Dubnyk, a guy with a 0.910 save percentage, as being more like Howard or Theodore or Clemmensen or Hedburg, than Backstrom or Hiller, etc.”

    And there’s really no chance that an arbitrator would’ve done more than 3.5.

    The cap hit is fine for this season. Could be a small problem for next season as Hall and Eberle need bigger deals, especially if Dubnyk regresses or runs in place and we want a winning goalie.

    We’ll never know for certain, but I’ll bet we here Dubnyk doing an interview, at some point in the future, where he says he was surprised by how awesome the Oilers offer was, just like Khabi was surprised by how awesome his offer was.

  169. Traktor says:

    AHL/NHL playoff games

    Schneider 42
    Rask 39
    Dubnyk 0

  170. nathan says:

    CrazyCoach,

    The year he wasn’t eligible for arbitration he signed at the end of August so I’d imagine we won’t see a signing until the week of arbitration.

    Too bad we can’t do a large chunk as bonuses for 8 point games and use the price of the insurance policy as the cap hit for the bonus.

  171. Kris11 says:

    Does he absence of a Gagner deal , and now the move towards arbitration, increase the likelihood he goes?

  172. "Steve Smith" says:

    Traktor:
    AHL/NHL playoff games

    Schneider 42
    Rask 39
    Dubnyk 0

    …and just when you were on your way to setting a personal record for most consecutive cogent posts.

  173. Kris11 says:

    So they are afraid to risk arbitration with Duby but not Gagner, who has put up some real offense and who has pedigree as a 6th overall pick.? I’m just trying to understand this as anything but rudderless.

  174. Cactus says:

    Kris11:
    So they are afraid to risk arbitration with Duby but not Gagner, who has put up some real offense and who has pedigree as a 6th overall pick.? I’m just trying to understand this as anything but rudderless.

    Kris, I posted this in the new thread:

    Some people are evaluating goalie contracts based on some calculation of absolute value. The market however, is nutty. I think the Dubnyk number is an overpay, but not by a ton. I bet his agent made the following compelling arguments:

    1) Dubnyk had to play behind the Oilers defence. His numbers might be approaching Schneider’s if he played in Vancouver.

    2) If he’s going to be the starter, they need to play him money comparable to starters, and not backups or “by committee” players.

    These are strong points in my mind.

  175. Traktor says:

    “Steve Smith”: …and just when you were on your way to setting a personal record for most consecutive cogent posts.

    I would rather bet on someone with playoff experience.

    Rask and Schneider obviously had a significant advantage playing on stronger NHL team but they also played a significant amount of AHL playoff games whereas Dubnyk has yet to be put in that type of pressure situation.

    It doesn’t help when DD only started playing well in the NHL when Edmonton was no longer in the playoff race.

  176. bookje says:

    Great, now that we are done creating drama about Ryan Smyth, we can start ranting and crying about how the team is ‘blowing’ the signing of Gagner (at least untill they sign him the day before arbitration).

  177. OilLeak says:

    bookje,

    To a 2 year 10 million dollar deal.

  178. DeadmanWaking says:

    Gret99zky:
    LT, if I recall that team was lightning in a bottle during the playoff and shit on a stick during the regular season.

    The difference before and after Roloson on SP was about half a goal per game. A small Knevil miscalculation less than the full canyonesque upgrade from 890 to 910, which works out to 0.6 GA/GP based on 30 shots average.

    Roloson for the whole season at his level (after he got the wobblies out in his first five games) would have cut our goals against by close to 30 goals for the season. What would that do for your 8th place finish? Cinderella? No fucking way. I’m sitting in a strange coffee shop about a week before the trade deadline waiting for someone I don’t even know is going to show up, and doing mindless calculations with the scattered newspapers. I start looking at goal-tending statistics and I go “holy fuck, this shit-on-a-stick season is the anatomical complement of a three-headed pushmepullyou”. When my companion finally did arrive I started blubbering “you know, this old beater just needs a rat corpse removed from the fan belt, and it might go like stink”. The main problem was that after all the struggles with the pinball flippers spaced so far apart, the team was still psychologically suspect. How do you start believing when you only manage to win over a span of 15 desperate games? Believing enough to beat Detroit? That was the question that fed my calamari fetish.

    I had a similar experience living in Montreal before the Messier cup. I pawed through the newspapers while drinking giant bowls of cafe au lait at my favorite A.L. Van Houtes (the proprietor heated my bowl to my exactly favorite too damn hot temperature, I could usually finish the local sports section using my 300 word French vocabulary before I had my paper napkin wrapped precisely enough around the rim to lift bowl to lips). They were inconsistent that season, by whatever standard was applied while our eyes recovered from the afterglow of magnesium flares. When I drilled into the stats more closely, holding a hand over the marshy reeds of the W/L column, I said to myself “this team is trending at the right time”. Then in the early rounds (as I recall, having missed the spectacle of fright-night in Winnipeg) my jaw just hung agape at the kid line digging the puck off the boards, and cycling the puck like Laraque dematerialized into Sedin triplets. In some of those games, the kids were so hot they weren’t even sheltered. For entire shifts they were playing keep-away against established veterans. Maybe that was against LA, and maybe LA was partly to blame. (My memory about our opponents is invariably dim. I’m a rabid hockey fan of a two-team league: us and them. Right now I’m dipping into random pages of Gravity’s Rainbow. That alone wipes out any possibility of recalling miscellaneous statistics for any team south or east of or a short drive from Lethbridge–excepting the Twilight Zone saga of Modano/Hatcher/Belfour by repetition alone.)

    My point–finally embossed–is that both of our last two cups were best anticipated by looking away from the W/L column at the sixty game mark.

    I hail from the The Sting/Seven Samurai school of playoff potential.

    Usually a heist film will contain a three-act plot. The first act usually consists of the preparations for the heist: gathering conspirators, learning about the layout of the location to be robbed, learning about the alarm system, revealing innovative technologies to be used, and, most importantly, setting up the plot twists in the final act.

    Sometimes the early recruits are bumbling misfits, but they all have some amazing individual gift, even if disguised in some cases as spectacularly pedestrian:

    [Introducing himself] Heihachi Hayashida, samurai of the “wood-chop” school.

    This is a Japanese code language for undrafted walk-on who busted his butt at grunt-labour, but never fails to bring a happy smile. They like him. His unfailing cheer becomes their secret weapon.

    Incidentally, I was checking my recollection of the kid line and I stumbled over a nasty thread circa 2004 of the Oilers most cherished in being booted through the saloon door. Dan Cleary was a consensus favorite. It was even suggested that MacT was the only human in the known universe who saw any potential in the useless bag of skin, excepting a few shifty turns with Doug Weight. Appears that the real problem was not enough Doug Weights. Who knew?

    Peca for all his troubles fitting into his assigned role in the first and second act, sprung some savvy moves in the third act that money just can’t buy. Where you see gloppy shit on a stick, I saw spring-loaded shit on a stick.

    My feeling is that Nuge needs another sheltered season. I also want to see Horc, Hemmer, and Smyth on three different lines. Spread the tools around. Nuge-Yak (off wing)-gifted_chemistry for soft minutes. Horc-Hall-reliable_chemistry for the dirty work. Hall is ready for a season of skating up hill if his shoulder recovers. I guess that leaves Gamgee-Smyth-dig_and_hustle_chemistry as the level-ice tandem. Is that workable? Not enough speed? I still don’t get how these questions are decided.

    I would be happy with Nuge-Smyth-Yak for soft minutes if that works better. Then maybe Hemsky plays off wing.

    After Yak gets a season of soft zone minutes under his belt, Nuge levels up to 0.500 in the faceoff dot, and Hall learns how to carry the mail uphill in both directions, I would dump the zone-start bias and build more conventional lines.

  179. Nostradumbass says:

    Traktor:
    Hall – RNH – Eberle
    MPS –Gagner – Yakupov
    Harty – Pitlick – Hemsky
    Smyth – Lander – Jones

    Smid –Schultz
    Klefbom – Petry
    Whitney – Schultz

    DD
    Roy

    I know it’s late to the game but my god is that an awful roster

    Do you hate the Oilers? Four forwards who,are barely AHL competent into the starting lineup? And two rookies in Fbomb and Roy that nobody expects in the roster next year?

    I’m going to assume this was a joke

  180. DeadmanWaking says:

    Away from the keyboard, it occurred to me shortly after posting that I misstated the recipe. s/last two cups/last cup and three quarters/ That’s regular expression syntax where the s stands for substitute. We came close enough that I drank the champagne in sorrow.

  181. gcw_rocks says:

    Ok, here is mine

    L1: Nuge-Hall-Eberle
    L2: Gagner-MPS-Yakupov (or Omark in MPS’ slot)
    L3: Horcoff-Smyth-Hemsky
    L4: Belanger-Petrell- Harski
    HS: Eager, Hordichuk
    D1: Smid-Petry
    D2: Shultz-J Schultz
    D3: Whitney-Sutton
    HS: Plante
    G1: Dubnyk, Danis
    PP1: Nuge-Hall-Eberle, Whitney – Petry
    PP2: Gagner – Yakupov – Hemsky, MPS, J Schutz
    PK1: Smyth – Horcoff, N Schutlz, Smid
    PK2:: Belanger – Petrell, Sutton – Petry

    L2 and L3 get similar minutes at EV, but L2′s minutes are pretty sheltered. But, MPS and Gagner should be able to play reasonable defence in support of Yakupov. Time for L1 to play second toughs. L3 does the heavy lifting. Like Woodguys defensive pairings. I would give MPS a shot on the second PP unit because I don’t see many good alternatives. Hope Klefbom is ready in 2013/14 because we are gonna need him.

  182. hags9k says:

    Traktor,
    Usually agree with you on Horcoff, in the past I’ve always seen him as an ideal 3C, except obviously that contract just sucks. But now he’s even at the point where we need to see more from him just to say he’s a useful 3/4 C.
    But I can’t help but cheer for a guy who plays such a workmanlike game but just can’t score. Maybe see too much of myself in there.

    With Gagner, I think this year is going to be the game changer. Everyone is ready to ride him out of town for a top 4 D give me a break, I see a 22 yr old who still has 1C potential. New coach and for the first time he is clear of Horcoff going into a camp in I think everyone’s heads. He showed what he can do last year when given “the wingers”. Remember that he went completely unconscious last year for a week. It was only a week sure but he was the best player in the world for a week. Don’t think the same could be said for a Duchene or a Getzlaf’s brother. And those guys would break the bank at 6-7 per. The 8 pointer was unreal but for me it was the 2 following games and the Detroit game in particular that stood out how he had found something and was able to keep the ride going for a while.

    Now looking at this year he will almost certainly have two of Hemmer, Hall, Ebs, YAK on his flank for an entire season. No more dishing it to the Coglianos, Moreaus, Stortinis, or Nilssons. Not to mention he’s 22 and has 5 years and 220 pts under his belt. (I know we hear this argument repeated ad nauseum, but it does hold water.) I could care less if he doesn’t win faceoffs. I bet a 27 year old Sam Gagner will be great in the dot. He’s not big no but competes hard, even fights. Smart, good pro, cares, high draft pick, bloodlines, on it goes. Want to bet he blocks shots in the playoffs?

    If we are smart we are going looooong term in arbitration, as he’s about to breakout bigtime in my opinion. If we get a value deal done in arbitration here it might be looked back on as one of the most important moments of the rebuild. If I was GM he’d be every bit as untouchable as the other 4.

    Two words…..Yak….Upov……this changes everything for Sam. (pretty sure I read that Gagner was the first to call Nail moments after the draft as he was leaving the stage…..as LT likes to say, Samwise is seeing miles of open blacktop in front of him right now!)

    GOILERS!!

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