FARM WORK

I’ve been looking at rows of numbers like these since I was a kid. They can tell us a lot of things and bring forward all kinds of discussion points. OKC 11-12 had a lot of questions, and several important answers.

Now you have to click on these in order to get the full Monty. The first ping is playoffs, the second, larger one is regular season. We’re not discussing goalies so that’s not on the graphs.

What can we tell from these names and numbers? Quite a few things.

  1. In both the regular season and during the playoffs, Magnus Paajarvi outscored Teemu Hartikainen.  Now, that may not count for a hill of beans–the Oilers like Harski’s size and commitment to physical play–but it should be mentioned all the same. TOI aside, Paajarvi would appear to be the better offensive player based on NHL and AHL totals.
  2. That Dylan Yeo fellow looked pretty good, especially in the playoffs. I see he’s a Marlie now, don’t know if that’s a good thing for OKC and their fans.
  3. Why haven’t they signed Kirill Tulupov? I know he’s not exactly smooth city but he’s big and strong and can bend steel. Sign the man!
  4. A guy like Mark Arcobello is kind of a mystery to me. I think he’s a good AHL player, but signing him to a contract that takes up a spot on the 50-man list means the team can’t sign a top flight prospect coming out of junior or NCAA. I don’t know enough about the business of hockey to say for certain, but that contract was pretty costly. Why not sign him to an AHL contract, as they did with Josh Green? I think the Arcobello contract was a mistake.
  5. Tyler Pitlick had a better playoff than Phil Cornet, and my guess is that the young Pitlick will post a solid AHL season in 12-13. One of the things that could derail it? A lockout.
  6. A lockout “could” mean we see Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, Jeff Petry and others in OKC.
  7. Hunter Tremblay scored 5SH goals in the regular season and 1 in the playoffs. I’d have signed him just for the curio. Winnipeg got him on an AHL only deal, I believe. Hope he makes it.
  8. I’m worried about Anton Lander’s offense. Seriously. I remember Doug Jarvis and he was no screaming hell but Anton needs to post a good number in OKC this season. He did have one good season in the SEL. Oilers management group deserves a giant kick in the arse for their handling of Lander (and Paajarvi for that matter) this past season.
  9. Alex Plante should–based on his season–be a player the Oilers are talking about as a real option for the big club. I haven’t heard a word. Telling. I think foot speed is still the issue.
  10. If the NHL expanded today and you could choose four position players from the playoff roster, who would you choose? My list, in order: 1. Paajarvi; 2. Hartikainen; 3. Lander; 4. Pitlick.
  11. Curtis Hamilton needs to have an impact TC. I don’t think anyone in the organization said a word about progress, it was all about “process” and “learning.” Oilers invested a pretty high pick on him, pressure is on. He should be under consideration for inclusion in the conversation in #10 and he is not. I don’t think the Oilers mishandled him and injury is a bitch,  but you’d like  to see a strong response from him this season.
  12. Antti Tyrvainen has one more year and honestly I have no idea if he’s a player. But I hope the Oilers have a good long look at him this winter in more of a feature role. Seems he has been the odd man out.
  13. Dan Ringwald. He’s come a long way. You never know.
  14. Magnus Paajarvi led the OKC Barons in playoff shots. Lordy.

NATION RADIO

Holiday weekend edition and we have a wide range of guests. Questions can be posted below, email is nationradio@theteam1260.com and I do pay attention to twitter: @lowetide_ and @ItsNationRadio.

Scheduled to appear:

  1. Jason Gregor from JG Show and Oilers Nation. We’ll talk Oilers summer, what they might have left to do and the importance of the Ryan’s and a Taylor or two.
  2. Eric Tulsky and his giant brain will return to talk about the importance of performance in the neutral zone and the relationship between possession and winning.
  3. Thomas Drance from Canucks Army and other parts of the Nations. Drance has clarity, and in the world of hockey think that’s like Olympic Gold. We’ll talk Arnott, Luongo and the NW division.
  4. Jim Byers from the OKC Barons. The Barons roster is starting to take shape with Josh Green, Chris VandeVelde and Alex Plante getting contracts recently. We’ll talk to Jim about the 12-13 edition of OKC Barons.
  5. Corey Graham, Oil Kings play by play man. I love hockey, but Corey loves it more. He cannot wait for OK training camp and we’ll talk about the WHL champions and their chances this season.
  6. Scott Francis Winder is a young Edmonton businessman who gets things done. We’ll talk about FC Edmonton’s big game tonight and a major event that will hit Edmonton in the next 7 days.

Your questions are the best, so bring them on. Festival seating, byob.

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38 Responses to "FARM WORK"

  1. sliderule says:

    Pitlick ,Hamilton and probably Martindale should have good bounce back years.

    They were all too young and should have been back in junior.

    At the development camp Martindale looked better than Hamilton.Seems to have worked on his skating

  2. Woodguy says:

    Scott Francis Winder is a pretty interesting person.

    Looking forward to it.

  3. Henry says:

    Great piece LT. I get to see okc a few times so have a few saw em goodornot observations.

    Paajarvi quarterbacked the pp in the playoffs with Pitlick as the main shot from the left point. Mps is far faster than everything in the slush including the puck.

    In the small sample I saw yeo looked very good. Head up under pressure good first pass. Ringwald not so much.

    Tremblay was my pick for a Fernando story. Terrific positional player. Lots of goals with limited shots. Maybe they let him go so Hamilton can develop next to arcobello who is a terrific heady player. Very small for a callup but just what you want for a possession game. Every loose puck finds him and he does something productive right away. Want to see Hamilton Pitlick arcobello on a line.

    Plante is a good defenseman but pretty slow for the show. Plays like Souray on d. Not the shot of course. Devastating fighter.

  4. godot10 says:

    Arcobello got a contract because there was competition for him. He is a really good top 6 AHL forward who stabilizes an AHL roster.

    He’s delivered on the deal. I don’t see how anyone can complain about that contract.

    The Oilers signed Smyth for two years, which meant Tremblay saw no opportunity with the Oilers. Hence, the Oilers had no shot at signing him. Likewise, Yeo sees the flood of young D, and so decided to flee to an organization with more potential opportunity also.

  5. Lowetide says:

    He was signed to an NHL contract (counted toward the 50 man list) after an average ECHL season and an excellent 26 AHL games. I’m sure there WAS competition for him, but the Oilers had to factor in management of the 50 man list along with signing forwards who could play in the AHL.

    That slot has been frozen for two summers now. He’s an AHL player, and a good one. The 50 man list is for NHL players and prospects.

    AHL only deal would have been the better plan, and if you can’t sign him then move on to the next available AHL contract.

  6. godot10 says:

    Lowetide:
    He was signed to an NHL contract (counted toward the 50 man list) after an average ECHL season and an excellent 26 AHL games. I’m sure there WAS competition for him, but the Oilers had to factor in management of the 50 man list along with signing forwards who could play in the AHL.

    That slot has been frozen for two summers now. He’s an AHL player, and a good one. The 50 man list is for NHL players and prospects.

    AHL only deal would have been the better plan, and if you can’t sign him then move on to the next available AHL contract.

    I think the result of that strategy is the Oilers AHL Springfield experience.

    Martindale is looking like a far more wasted contract (and for three years) than Arcobello. Arcobello facilitated the vast improvement in Cornet, and guarentees there is a good offensive centre for Pitlick to play with.

  7. Ducey says:

    Lowetide,

    Acrobello is second in regular season scoring and leads in playoff scoring in his first full year in the AHL and that’s a wasted contract?

    Sounds to me like you saw him small. If he was drafted in the 5 th round he would be evidence in support of of MBS.

    He might not make the show but he is just 23 and had two good years at Yale. The guy can play.

    If nothing else he provides protection and support for your prospects. Lots of AHL teams are filled out with guys on 2 way NHL contracts. I would rather have a guy who is still somewhat of a prospect than a mercenary 28 yr old just playing in the AHL for the money.

  8. PerryK says:

    Regarding MPS (a re-post of my post at C&B) :

    From what I “saw”…..
    …It appears that he has no finish in either the D or O zones. What I mean is that he gets to where he needs to be just fine; in plenty of time and with good spacing. However, he appears dumbfounded as to what he should do next; until all that time and space starts to evaporate.

    That seems to be the major reason that he isn’t effective. All of this has probably got a lot to do with his coaches changing his positions (he started on D and has played every F position during his hockey career). He doesn’t seem to have a very assertive bearing to him, which means he will try to do everything that is asked of him, instead of concentrating on any single thing. Someone needs to tell him what his game is and simplify the whole thing for him. I think if given one single goal, he can achieve it just fine.

    If you tell him to shoot as soon as a sliver of an opportunity presents itself (even if he has to create an angle), he will be a good goal scorer. If he is instructed to always look for a trailer, when he gets the puck to the side boards, he will do that.

    On defense quite often he is the first guy back. That is quite silly for a winger who is expected to score or help score. Not every time will the other team turn a partial turnover in their D zone into a scoring chance! Some times you get the puck right back! MPS is already in his own zone and totally out of the play! Even when he gets back on D, he doesn’t know where to help. Should he wait for his man to get to the O zone and get involved in the play or switch off with his lagging C who should have been here already? The uncertainty is plain in his face and many times he takes no one!

    Mainly he needs consistent instruction so he doesn’t need to work it out himself. I blame the coaches!

  9. Mr DeBakey says:

    Godot & Ducey nail it!

    Oilers right
    You are wrong!

  10. Lowetide says:

    I’d rather have an actual NHL prospect on the roster every year than an AHL winger with no chance of advancement. Sign one more Ryan Keller or Josh Green. I feel the same way about the Dane Byers signing btw, although imo there is a chance he’ll play some NHL with the Oilers.

    As for his point total, 82 men had more points in the AHL last season. It wasn’t an outstanding number.

  11. jfry says:

    Seriously. How is gene Principe doing Olympic coverage? He’s doing his rhymey stuff during the omnium and other announcers are totally befuddled by him.

    Godot. U make an argument for liking acrobello, but that’s not an argument to sign him to an NHL contract. Different things.

  12. Lowetide says:

    The Olympic coverage this time around tells us what a massive challenge it must be for any Canadian network. Principe’s area of expertise isn’t the omnium but I like Gene so he gets a pass. Now, Pierre McGuire at the water polo events has been pure comedy.

  13. Bar_Qu says:

    Just look south of the border to see what we could have had for olympic coverage. I have been constantly impressed with the commentators & the color this whole olympics (tho I have stayed mainly with CTV’s main channel; blasted kids always wanting to go outside!).

    I honestly don’t know how much more PRV can do to get his offense going. He’ll either breakout this season or go the way of so many surefire picks before him. I’ll bet the former (not really bet, just the euphemism).

  14. gd says:

    Lowetide,

    I thought you were joking about McGuire on the Water Polo coverage. That has to be a huge insult to the entire Water Polo community. If he proclaims he loves a guys entire “package” that better end up on YouTube

  15. Bushed says:

    PerryK,

    I think your comments are dead on re PRV.

    I also would add that PRV’s defensive game was questioned early on with the Oil, after he was having some offensive success in the pre-season (can’t remember if the question was raised by someone in the press or a coach’s/scout’s comment?), and he seemed to over-compensate for D big time afterwards.

    But you’re right, he needs some more specific help from the coaches–the skill seems fine.

  16. jp says:

    Lowetide:
    He was signed to an NHL contract (counted toward the 50 man list) after an average ECHL season and an excellent 26 AHL games. I’m sure there WAS competition for him, but the Oilers had to factor in management of the 50 man list along with signing forwards who could play in the AHL.

    That slot has been frozen for two summers now. He’s an AHL player, and a good one. The 50 man list is for NHL players and prospects.

    AHL only deal would have been the better plan, and if you can’t sign him then move on to the next available AHL contract.

    We all agree I think that Arcobello is a very solid AHL player. You’re certainly right that at the time of the signing it looked like a questionable one, but he’s been better than I expected. I think we also agree that Arcobello has little or no NHL future, so the only issue is the use of an NHL contract on a player who is only going to benefit the OKC team. For sure getting the same player on an AHL deal is better, but as I’ve said before, I think the concern over the # of NHL contracts is overblown.

    Right now the Oil are at 48 of 50 contracts. This includes Musil, Klefbom and Yakupov, who don’t actually count against the 50 until they’ve played pro games. So really, for the coming season it will be 46/50 (possibly will be 47 if the rumors of Klefbom coming over are true).

    Are the Oilers going to want to take on more than 3/4 additional NHL contracts before TC without shipping others out? It doesn’t look likely to me.

    Have the Arcobello/Byers contracts prevented the Oil from signing anyone else? I don’t think so. One could definitely argue that Blain or Czerwonka would have gotten ELCs, or that Tremblay would have been re-signed, but I’m not so sure. The only one of those 3 who I think might have an equal or better chance of an NHL career than Arcobello is Blain, and I strongly suspect the decision not to sign him wasn’t about too many NHL contracts. More likely it was about Marincin and Davidson turning pro this season followed by likely Klefbom, Musil, Gernat and Bigos next season. May be Blain’s “personality issues” also played a role (which the Oilers know far more about than we ever could). Whatever the reasons, they certainly decided they liked Davidson more than Blain, and presumably next years crew as well.

    Even if they were at 50 contracts and wanted to make additional moves, would the Arcobello/Byers contracts block that? I don’t see how they would. If Doan decides he HAS to come play in Edmonton, or Clutterbuck decides to trade himself to the Oilers (and the team were actually at the contract limit), does anyone think it would be a problem to move 1 or 2 of those 50 contracts for a draft pick or futures at a moments notice? Would it really be difficult to find a team who’d take one of Arcobello, Byers, Cornet, Tyrvainen, VV, Martindale, House, Plante, Davidson or Hordichuk for nothing? May be I’m wrong, but it doesn’t seem to me like it would be.

    Someone can fill me in if I’m missing something here, but from my point of view while Arcobello/Byers are going to contribute little or nothing at the NHL level, they are going to help make OKC a strong team, and I don’t see the negative of these being NHL contracts on the organization.

  17. SinceTheWHADays says:

    JP makes a hellova good point there LT.

  18. gd says:

    Going through the rosters on Capgeek it seems to me every team has at least three guys on their 50 man roster that are over 23 and appear to not be legit prospects anymore so I don’t think we have any concerns. After the Springfield debacle of the mid 2000s, I am happy they have taken steps to have a strong AHL team. I am encouraged that our support players are getting used to winning, and I hope this means we will have the young depth guys that can fill in when injuries happen and provide support in the playoffs the way King and Nolan did for LA.

  19. hags9k says:

    Did Pierre name a water monster of the game? Someone should throw him in the deep end.

    Also, I think Byers could be a darkhorse in camp. Still pretty young and there’s been some scoring there. And he’s as tough (fighting) as anyone else under contract…

  20. OilLeak says:

    Arcobello was by far the best player for OKC last year, the guy just controls the whole game when he’s on the ice, I expect a great upcoming season from him and he may surprise some. I have no problem with the Arcobello contract, OKC would be lost without him.

  21. leadfarmer says:

    Hey LT, dont know if your a boxing fan but some of the olympic boxing has been of suprisingly good quality. There was a match between a Ukrainian and a brit a few days ago, sorry their names escaped me since due to my love of consuming alcohol, that was one of the better boxing matches in recent years.

  22. leadfarmer says:

    MPS needs to ask the wizard of OZ for some courage, and Plante for a fast twitch muscle and they will be in good shape.

  23. leadfarmer says:

    Why i,m at it whitney for ankles, hemsky for shoulders, gagner for size and likeability so he is not traded by fans every week, Hall for durability, rnh for some big macs, khabi for sobriety,

  24. jp says:

    leadfarmer:
    Why i,m at it whitney for ankles, hemsky for shoulders, gagner for size and likeability so he is not traded by fans every week, Hall for durability, rnh for some big macs,khabi for sobriety,

    I think more drinking would be better for Khabi, in that it might get him off the team and out of the NHL sooner.

    PS – I suggested courage for Paajarvi, a brain for Eager, and some wheels for Plante a couple of weeks ago.

  25. "Steve Smith" says:

    jp,

    Meh – Khabi’s on the last year of his contract and, looking at this roster’s makeup, it’s pretty unlikely that our backup goalie’s going to be what stands between us and the playoffs. It was a terrible contract, but it’s almost up, and Oilers management shrewdly minimized its impact on the team by making sure we were also terrible at every other position. At this point, I’m happy enough to wait it out.

  26. sliderule says:

    JP you must have a pipeline to the oilers because your comment about Eager is what Renney told to a friend of mine.
    “dumbest player he ever coached”

  27. OilLeak says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    jp,

    Meh – Khabi’s on the last year of his contract and, looking at this roster’s makeup, it’s pretty unlikely that our backup goalie’s going to be what stands between us and the playoffs.It was a terrible contract, but it’s almost up, and Oilers management shrewdly minimized its impact on the team by making sure we were also terrible at every other position.At this point, I’m happy enough to wait it out.

    And if Dubnyk gets hurt? Mackinnon or Jones?

  28. "Steve Smith" says:

    OilLeak,

    Probably. And if Dubnyk’s healthy, then it’s whoever’s ranked sixth or seventh.

    I’m just saying that the Oilers have put together such a lousy team overall, the fact that our backup goalie stinks doesn’t matter too much. If this was the 2005-2006 team, it would be a different matter.

  29. OilLeak says:

    “Steve Smith”,

    Understood, this team is still built to lose regardless of who’s in net. It would be a delightful change in pace if that were to change for this upcoming season.

  30. gd says:

    OilLeak,

    And if Hiller, Miller, Kiprosoff, Ward, Varlamov, Lehtonen, Howard, Price, Rinne, Lundqvist, Anderson, Smith, Niemi, Lindback, Pavelac and possibly even Rask got hurt or suck you could say the same for their teams. Very few teams have great backup Goalies. That ‘s why they’re backups. It is very rare to have a backup like Schneider, and I would say the odds are better that Elliot will revert back to being a below average goalie this year.

    There are very few teams that can handle the amount of injuries the Oilers had last year and make the playoffs. Now if Hall can never play more than 70 games and Whitney is permanently damaged than we’re still in trouble, but I’ve got to think we’re due for at least an average amount of injuries for a change.

  31. "Steve Smith" says:

    gd,

    Most of those goalies wouldn’t put their teams in the lottery by going down, but I agree that that’s more a function of the rest of the Oilers’ roster than of their backup goalie.

  32. Dalton says:

    2012-2013 predictions:

    Eberle PPG
    Hall PPG
    RNH PPG
    Yakupov PPG
    Hemsky PPG
    Smyth PPG
    Paajarvi PPG
    Hartikainen PPG

    … Somebody had to say it.

  33. Dalton says:

    gd: but I’ve got to think we’re due for at least an average amount of injuries for a change.

    Gambler’s fallacy :(

  34. Dalton says:

    jp: I think more drinking would be better for Khabi, in that it might get him off the team and out of the NHL sooner.

    Dang, I hope Khabi’s wife and kids don’t read this blog, that was a pretty low blow…

  35. jb says:

    gd:
    OilLeak,
    I would say the odds are better that Elliot will revert back to being a below average goalie this year.

    Doubtful… team defense plays a huuuge factor here. How good would Khabi look in STL? How bad would Halak/Elliot be looking in Edmonton over the last few years? Oh how I’d love to know. Tambellini understimated such a factor greatly imo

  36. "Steve Smith" says:

    jb,

    I’d say he got it about right – Khabibulin looked shitty elsewhere, and then he looked shitty with Edmonton.

  37. OilLeak says:

    gd:
    OilLeak,

    And if Hiller, Miller, Kiprosoff, Ward, Varlamov, Lehtonen, Howard, Price, Rinne, Lundqvist,Anderson,Smith, Niemi, Lindback, Pavelac and possibly even Raskgot hurt or suck you could say the same for their teams. Very few teams have great backup Goalies. That ‘s why they’re backups. It is very rare to have a backup like Schneider, and I would say the odds are better that Elliot will revert back to being a below average goalie this year.

    There are very few teams that can handle the amount of injuries the Oilers had last year and make the playoffs. Now if Hall can never play more than 70 games and Whitney is permanently damaged than we’re still in trouble, but I’ve got to think we’re due for at least an average amount of injuries for a change.

    Yeah, because Khabby has been the back-up goaltender till this point, right? And if Dubnyk falters, that leaves the Oilers with Khabby as the go to guy in net… again.

  38. cmon85 says:

    I really wish “Steve Smith” knew what he was talking about. He seems rather bright.

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