NUGE TO WJ’S

Mark Spector has the story this morning, the Nuge will take some time away from the OKC Barons season and play at the World Juniors (should he make the team, which would seem to be a no-brainer). I’m not going to spoil the article–Spector did the work, you should click through–but this is the Nuge’s decision based on the framework in Spector’s piece.

I think it’s a fine idea, giving Oiler fans someone to cheer for at four on Boxing Day morning, and the Nuge’s AHL season (thus far) has been as successful as we should have expected it to be:

PP SCORING, BARONS F’S

NAME GP PP G PPA PP PTS PP PTS/G
RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS 19 3 9 12 .632
JORDAN EBERLE 20 3 8 11 .550
TAYLOR HALL 12 3 2 5 .417
MAGNUS PAAJARVI 20 1 6 7 .350
TEEMU HARTIKAINEN 20 2 4 6 .300
MARK ARCOBELLO 18 3 0 3 .167

EV SCORING, BARONS F’S

  NAME GP EG EA EV PTS EV P/G
1 TAYLOR HALL 12 2 9 11 .917
2 JORDAN EBERLE 20 9 7 16 .800
3 TEEMU HARTIKAINEN 20 4 6 10 .500
4 RYAN MARTINDALE 6 0 3 3 .500
5 MARK ARCOBELLO 18 3 5 8 .444
6 RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS 19 5 3 8 .421
7 TONI RAJALA 5 1 1 2 .400
8 MAGNUS PAAJARVI 20 1 5 6 .300
9 DANE BYERS 20 2 2 4 .200
10 CHRIS VANDEVELDE 17 0 3 3 .176
11 TYLER PITLICK 14 0 2 2 .143
12 CURTIS HAMILTON 16 1 1 2 .125
13 ANTTI TYRVAINEN 9 0 1 1 .111
14 TANNER HOUSE 12 1 0 1 .083
15 ANTON LANDER 16 1 0 1 .063

It’ll also give the Barons a chance to mix and match Hall and Eberle, and I suspect Hartikainen and Paajarvi will get a push, maybe Lander too who knows? Since this is an Oiler fan blog, it also requires me to mention the possibility of Hall moving over to C for a time.

The one guy I’m interested in seeing over the next few weeks in OKC is young Rajala. Buddy has done some nice things since coming over from northern California.

Note: How about that Taylor Hall at evens. My.

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28 Responses to "NUGE TO WJ’S"

  1. PunjabiOil says:

    What happens if the season starts on say, January 2?

    Gold medal game on January 5.

    What does the franchise do? What should they do?

  2. Lowetide says:

    If they commit to the WJ’s, and they have, then they commit to the WJ’s.

  3. speeds says:

    PunjabiOil,

    I was wondering the same team, I don’t think they’d pull the players out that late in the tourney (speaking of not only RNH but also Yakupov), but I’m curious if they can were a deal to be signed on Dec 5, with the season to start on Christmas or Boxing Day?

    If they even have the option of recalling them, would they be tempted to still leave Yakupov in RUS anyways, assuming Yakupov would prefer to stay in RUS and play for RUS?

  4. jp says:

    I like it. I think it was a no-lose decision for his development (that is, keeping him in OKC, or having him play the WJrs are both positive). Sounds like he really wants to play though, which is great. Looks like RNH and the Oilers braintrust are all Team Canada fans (much like Sens management who are helping by keeping Zibanejad out of the WJrs).

    Would be really interesting to see Hall take a spin at C, but I think Josh Green is just about ready to return, so he may slot straight into Nuges spot.

  5. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    This is awesome!

    I can’t really think of a draw-back. The idea that the hockey is radically better in the AHL seems misplaced to me as does the “unit cohesion” argument.

    A couple of weeks playing high-caliber hockey for his country isn’t going to damage either IMO.

    Besides, if Spector’s hunch is right on this:

    “Nugent-Hopkins has not played in a World Junior tournament, and this will be the last one he is eligible for. You can bet that Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall — two WJHC veterans who are playing in OKC with Nugent-Hopkins — urged him to experience a World Junior while he is still eligible to do so.”

    It may even boost unit cohesion… they will all share in an important developmental experience.

    Moreover… this will simply give the best hockey tournament (next to Stanley when the Oil are in the POs) more drama! As a Hockey Canada and Oiler fan… this is the best possible outcome!

  6. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    ps. assuming the NHL gets it’s act together… what are we realistically talking about here? A week and a half… maybe 4-5 games max.

  7. Lowetide says:

    This from Bob McKEnzie an hour ago–missed it:

    Bob McKenzie ‏@TSNBobMcKenzie

    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins’ shoulder isn’t “injured” per se but hasn’t felt quite right this season in AHL. So he’s back in EDM for evaluation.

    Hmmmm.

  8. loosemoose says:

    Lowetide,

    Sounds about right…..

  9. Lowetide says:

    22 minutes ago
    22m Ryan Rishaug Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug
    To be clear, RNH wasn’t snubbed by team canada.. I was at camp 2 yrs ago he wasn’t ready back then. He’ll be first line centre this time

    4 minutes ago
    Bob Stauffer ‏@Bob_Stauffer
    To be clear lots of media types said RNH needed to return to Junior last fall. Some based on showing at WJC camp’s…RNH proved otherwise

    I think the key words are “to be clear” but perhaps I’m reading too much into it. An lol moment

  10. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide:
    22 minutes ago
    22m Ryan Rishaug Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug
    To be clear, RNH wasn’t snubbed by team canada.. I was at camp 2 yrs ago he wasn’t ready back then. He’ll be first line centre this time

    4 minutes ago
    Bob Stauffer ‏@Bob_Stauffer
    To be clear lots of media types said RNH needed to return to Junior last fall. Some based on showing at WJC camp’s…RNH proved otherwise

    I think the key words are “to be clear” but perhaps I’m reading too much into it. An lol moment

    Not sure why but that use of “to be clear” reminded me of this funny parsing of the dickish use of “actually” (with bonus reference to the use of “literally”):

    While literally and actually can be used interchangeably, actually has a bad attitude. Literally can be mocked and laughed at, because literally almost no one uses it correctly. Actually is more sneaky, a wolf in sheep’s clothing. Actually is the word that you use when you’re actually saying, “You are wrong, and I am right, and you are at least a little bit of an idiot.” (Actually, my name is Jen, not Jane.) The fact that it often comes out so passive aggressively makes it worse than literally, too.

    http://www.theatlanticwire.com/entertainment/2012/08/actually-worst-word-planet-actually/55360/

  11. OilClog says:

    If Nuge’s shoulder isn’t 100%.. For god sakes fix him first!! Screw the AHL and worlds. But if it turns out he’s all good.. It will be interesting watching his talent among guys his own age, Nuge vs Yak? Fantastic.

  12. Lowetide says:

    the shoulder item is a concern, would hope the Oilers would be extra careful during a lockout period. Jeebus.

  13. Ribs says:

    Canada-Russia games would be outstanding if everything falls right.

    That shoulder, though…Just get it fixed. We’ve seen this played out too many times as Oilers fans in recent years. It just doesn’t get magically better on it’s own. The NHL season is lost so it’s a good time to get it done, too.

  14. Rocknrolla says:

    Lowetide,

    The curse of the shoulder strikes again….man alive!

  15. godot10 says:

    Shoulders are complicated things.

    “Just fix it” is not something that necessarily applies.

  16. OilClog says:

    godot10,

    We know shoulders are a complicated part of the body, being Oiler fans and all. Yes just fix the damn thing, rehab, repair, rebuild whatever needs to be done to maximize the prevention of reoccurring injury, or keep throwing him out there before it’s done. Yikes

  17. spoiler says:

    Staff is sort of reliant on the player to effin say something. But what player does when it’s just “a feeling”?

  18. godot10 says:

    OilClog:
    godot10,

    We know shoulders are a complicated part of the body, being Oiler fans and all. Yes just fix the damn thing, rehab, repair, rebuild whatever needs to be done to maximize the prevention of reoccurring injury, or keep throwinghim out there before it’s done. Yikes

    You often can’t figure out if it is fixed without throwing them out there again. You sometimes don’t know if surgery will just make things worse instead of better. The shoulder might have felt perfectly fine all summer. Working out is different than playing hockey.

    Sometimes with shoulders, it is just finding the correct physiotherapy and exercise routine.

    “Just fix it” is mostly just for bones.

  19. Ribs says:

    Well, it’s been almost a full year since the initial injury and he’s still being bothered by it. How long do you wait?

  20. Oilanderp says:

    God damnit Jim I’m a hockey fan not a doctor!

  21. Rocknrolla says:

    Is it just me or did the line in Specs article surprise you too?!? The line that said he had surgery this off season??

    Must have been a minor one but I don’t recall ever hearing about this before. Maybe I missed it, someone tell me I’m not crazy!

    If so would like to hear exactly what the surgery was and it’s rehab time?

  22. Lowetide says:

    honestly, I give the hell up when it comes to Oilers and injuries. Its like that scene in Airplane when the guy says “turn on the landing lights” and the other guy says “NO! That’s just what they’ll be expecting us to do!”

  23. speeds says:

    For anyone interested, I was asking around a bit on twitter and it seems like this year, assuming both Yakupov and RNH play, would be the first time two (already drafted) #1 overall picks have been in the same tournament since Daigle and Jovo nearly 20 years ago.

  24. OilLeak says:

    The effects of shoulder injuries linger long after the injury has healed. Scar tissue becomes a issue, knots and imbalances become an issue. Joint rehab is an ongoing thing and never 100% Resolves itself. The Nuge might be just feeling the after effects of the surgery.

  25. OilLeak says:

    Rocknrolla:
    Is it just me or did the line in Specs article surprise you too?!?The line that said he had surgery this off season??

    Must have been a minor one but I don’t recall ever hearing about this before. Maybe I missed it, someone tell me I’m not crazy!

    If so would like to hear exactly what the surgery was and it’s rehab time?

    Yeah I don’t recall there be a surgery in the first place.

  26. Rebilled says:

    If the Nuge wants to play the WJ’s then he should. They need him. Who doesn’t want to see the Nuge vs. the Yak? Canucks fans?

    After though, the Joilers would be very wise to get this taken care of. Right after.

  27. russ99 says:

    Glad to see Nuge going after more glory on the international stage, and he should be the class of the tournament.

    But this will expose the glaring need for a #2 center prospect in the system and playing in OKC.

  28. CrazyCoach says:

    Glad to hear Nuge is going to the WJC this year.

    He must be setting some kind of a precedent as this first player to play a full NHL season, be out due to a lockout, spend time in the AHL, then play in the WJC.

    The shoulder is a concern as he doesn’t seem to have much muscle around that joint to begin with. Mind you, Tim Kerr had shoulders the size of Arnie and it didn’t seem to help him much.

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