WAITING FOR NAIL TO PING

Lots of talk around town about Nail Yakupov. Some are worried he’ll stay in Russia and some wonder if he’ll make the team. The smart money says “don’t worry he’ll be in Canada soon” and “seriously? you’ve seen this movie before.”

Yakupov had a fine 22 games in the KHL, going 10-8-18 -4 with 33 pims. 76 shots on goal (3.45 per game) and 14 and a half minutes a game. He didn’t play in the game on January 6th and the next game is January 10th according to the KHL schedule. It sounds like some of the KHL NHLers (if you know what I mean) are still playing league games, which I think is fine as long as TC aren’t open here. If Nail Yakupov plays Thursday and gets to Edmonton in time for TC Sunday (which will probably be physicals) that’s fine, right?

The Oilers are no doubt in touch with Igor Larionov and until we hear otherwise I’d suggest this is much ado about nothing.

As for NHL readiness, I’m trying hard to understand why people would think Nail Yakupov is less NHL ready than Taylor Hall or Ryan Nugent-Hopkins in the months after they were drafted by the Oilers. This kid has already played in a very good pro league against men–something Hall and the Nuge didn’t do–and in fact scored 10 goals in 22 KHL games. Now, please understand I know there are good arguments against having these kids play year 1 in the NHL and burning a year of their entry level deals.

I know that many of the Oilogosphere’s best disagree with my view of when a prospect is ready (my view is covered here) and respect the opinion of those who believe the greater value is on the other end of the contract.

What I can’t agree with is what I’ve been hearing from some in Edmonton this week, from some of the fanbase I’m in touch with–that somehow Yakupov is less capable of climbing that mountain to the NHL as a teenager, less qualified than Nuge and Hall entering the show.

I would argue the opposite: Nail Yakupov’s KHL experience has to be counted heaviliy when assessing his NHL readiness. A pro league against men, and he’s performed well. What else is there to prove?

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89 Responses to "WAITING FOR NAIL TO PING"

  1. FPB94 says:

    But he’s a dirty russian.

    Fully agree, he proved he could score at an impressive clip against men. Enough for me.

  2. regwald says:

    He is also another one of those players who has been playing competitive hockey unlike a lot of NHL players who have been skating only or working out. He has a step ahead there as well as the KHL experience you mention.

    He’s more ready than he would have been in October.

  3. sliderule says:

    Didn’t Hall go almost 10 games without a goal in his debut?

    Don’t worry he will be here and if he is given an opportunity like Hall and Ebs had will deliver.

  4. hunter1909 says:

    I always wanted to see a Rocket Richard type Oiler – and now Oilers have two of them.

    Yakupov will score the 48 game equivalent of 30 goals.

  5. godot10 says:

    The NHLPA doesn’t ratify till Saturday. He would probably be violating his KHL contract if he refuses to play before the new CBA is actually ratifiied.

    This is why some Russians are still playing. Contracts work both ways. Some people are expecting players to violate their Russian contracts.

    There is no CBA till Saturday.

  6. OilClog says:

    Will anyone reach 50g this season from around the league? Hot streak of two, rusty goalies.. Could happen.

  7. Truth says:

    It’s a shame he couldn’t (wouldn’t have anyway) played in the AHL with the Barons. That would have acclimated him to the north american pro game and the organization would have had a better idea where he fits among the other young guys.

    Does anyone know if there is a certain amount of games he can play in the NHL without burning a year of his ELC? I can imagine it might have changed from last CBA to this one too, so I guess no one would really know yet. Ideally, he would stay in Russia and continue to develop there, and if the magic number is 20 games, not counting playoffs (crossed fingers), then I would bring him over then. He gets to develop in an easier league for a couple more months and the Oilers don’t burn a year. Of course this is me just dreaming, it can’t be that easy.

    I do think he’s ready for the NHL, and I also think he is going to strive offensively. Yak plays a pure attack game. Get him the puck when he has speed and lookout. Taylor Hall sure didn’t have the Nuge and J. Schultz passing him the puck. I do believe he will struggle defensively and Krueger will be “letting him see the game from a different perspective” a number of times this season, but he and J Schultz will have a good battle for the Calder. J Schultz with the Calder victory on his pre-season hype alone.

  8. leadfarmer says:

    Might not be a bad idea for him to finish the year in Russia if he so chooses. It is a very good league and he will learn a lot playing there. Most post draft year players arent ready for the NHL including 1st overall picks, and while they might put points on the board they are a defensive liability. We have plenty of guys on this roster that need sheltering as it is. This will also push his entry level contract back a year helping spread out our cap hits on resigning our 1st overall gems. Dont get me wrong I am excited to see him play, but as long as he comes by next year I dont really care when he comes.

  9. leadfarmer says:

    Also he has played on three different teams this year already. Might be beneficial to provide the young man with a little stability. (All this of course if he wants to finish the year in Russia, if he doesnt this is all a mute point)

  10. jp says:

    Truth:
    Does anyone know if there is a certain amount of games he can play in the NHL without burning a year of his ELC?I can imagine it might have changed from last CBA to this one too,

    It’s always been 10 GP. Guess it’s possible there’s an alteration in the new CBA but haven’t heard anything about it.

  11. jb says:

    I truly don’t understand the mixed opinions on Yakupov around Edmonton either… This guys has a true number 1 pedigree, then went on to prove himself in a pro mens league. I think the smear campaign began in Edmonton starting around the draft with all the media BS about who’s going number 1. Everyone except the drama chasing idiots knew who was going 1. I personally felt like Yaks name was being dragged down by the media through that entire process.

    I use the term “drama chasing idiots” because those are the same people worried about him staying in Russia, and now worried he’s not ready based off a junior tourney..

    Accept it people, Yak has a legit chance to be the best of our 4.

  12. FPB94 says:

    I still like Ike. (Cause Galchenyuk doesn’t rhyme)

  13. 3rdlinecentre says:

    With respect to NHL readiness I can’t imagine that we should expectations of Yakupov that are less than what we had for Taylor Hall. In looking at his Desjardins NHLE (covered in this blog) he was on pace to better Hall before his injury, and his KHL experience certainly wouldn’t lead anyone to believe that his OHL pace was a fluke. He’s as NHL ready as Hall or the Nuge were, plus he’s shown well in the KHL.

    I’m more interested to see how the OIlers handle him and the expectations around him when he gets here (there’s no way he’s not coming). He’s had a whirlwind summer of travel and hockey which for anyone would be draining. I would expect them to set the expectations low and position Yakupov’s arrival and debut in that fashion to take some pressure off of him as they ease him into the NHL.

    It should be interesting.

  14. cabbiesmacker says:

    OilClog:
    Will anyone reach 50g this season from around the league? Hot streak of two, rusty goalies.. Could happen.

    As a team there’s an outside chance Columbus might.

  15. bookje says:

    The MSM selecting him as their whipping boy at the WJs didn’t help his reputation amongst the uninformed masses.

  16. OIL4LIFE says:

    cabbiesmacker,

    Nice WoW. Props!

  17. spoiler says:

    Whatever the thoughts of the armchair GMs, doesn”t Yak at least deserve a look at TC? Wouldn”t it actually be nuts for the coach and GM to not look at him in camp?

  18. spoiler says:

    LT,

    Are you expecting the OIl to exercise their option to invite David Musil to camp? Sorry if this has been covered in an earlier thread.

  19. Wes Mantooth-11 says:

    It sure as hell doesn’t help the Oilers fans around town who are excited to see Yakupov when some MSM are tweeting Bullshit comments!

    Let it go Fatman!

    I think Yakupov will do very well, and Larionov won’t let this kid make to many mistakes.

    “We Win”

  20. striatic says:

    jb:

    Accept it people, Yak has a legit chance to be the best of our 4.

    i agree with this.

    early yet, but he could certainly end up being better than Hall, and that’s saying a lot.

  21. Wes Mantooth-11 says:

    striatic,

    Agreed, he could very well be the best of the four, in fact with the talent up front he could be a fun player to watch.

  22. LMHF#1 says:

    First, I think he makes the team no questions asked.

    What I do wonder about is whether he’ll just keep it simple and/or be allowed to. He needs to work with his strengths. The rest will come. Use him as the weapon he is rather than expecting a complete player straight-away or making him adhere to a cautious gameplan.

  23. striatic says:

    the thing i’m worried about is oilers fans being underwhelmed by Yak’s first year stats, given that he will probably see less ice time than Hall, Eberle and Nuge did starting out.

  24. Captain Happy says:

    Latest on Luongo rumours:

    Luongo to Toronto for Tyler Bozak, Matt Frattin (pulled from the Marlies game tonight) and a 2nd round pick.

  25. hunter1909 says:

    striatic:
    the thing i’m worried about is oilers fans being underwhelmed by Yak’s first year stats, given that he will probably see less ice time than Hall, Eberle and Nuge did starting out.

    Not me. Oilers have FIVE superstar propects…play them together for a season or three and watch all of them reach their potential – they’re different ages, play different positions, and of course all have spectacular potential. Yakupov’s going to fly out of the gate anyway. Book it.

  26. striatic says:

    hunter1909,

    i think he will fly out of the gate, but my suspicion is that he will also be playing behind both Eberle and Hemsky and that even if he plays exceptionally well he won’t be putting up the numbers he would in a more prominent role.

  27. bookje says:

    Not happy to see this Article confirming a ard press by the KHL to retain NHL talent.

    http://www.theglobeandmail.com/sports/hockey/khl-declares-war-on-nhl-contracts/article7082832/

    The league is not bound by a nice official CBA, corruption reigns supreme and the owners are billionaires with few scruples (that’s how you got to be a billionaire in post Soviet Russia). There are national aspirations tied to the league as well with a quasi-dictator’s pride involved. It’s is how a league with big payrolls and tiny arena’s survive. I can imagine they can be very pursuasive with the money they have at their disposal.

    I will be glad to see the tweet from Nail saying “Leaving for Edmonton tomorrow” or something of the sort. He is a young man with lots of pride playing in his hometown who has been on the receiving end of a lot of criticism in the Canadian media.

    Nail – “please call”

  28. hunter1909 says:

    striatic:
    hunter1909,

    i think he will fly out of the gate, but my suspicion is that he will also be playing behind both Eberle and Hemsky and that even if he plays exceptionally well he won’t be putting up the numbers he would in a more prominent role.

    You may be right, but my take is that Kreuger is innovative enough to have noticed, the same as I did last season how Hemsky looked pretty good playing like an old timey Rover, along with Taylor Hall and I’m not certain who else.

    Yakupov has so much talent even MacT wouldn’t be able to destroy it – unlike Rob Schremp.

  29. Lowetide says:

    Yakupov has a signed contract with the NHL. I don’t see how the KHL can get around it. Plus of course there’s no indication he isn’t coming. It’ll be interesting to see who goes apedoodle on the young Russian over this, though.

  30. Captain Happy says:

    Наиль Якупов ‏@Nail10_1993

    Finale home :) Miss u guys ! I hope we will be with some guys in some team :-*

  31. hunter1909 says:

    Lowetide: It’ll be interesting to see who goes apedoodle on the young Russian over this, though.

    That’s the sign of a franchise in transition from crap to excellent. The poor teams live in a world of bad news, while great teams live in the sunshine.

    Speaking of, does anyone else think the Red Wings are finished, post Lidstrom?

  32. Wes Mantooth-11 says:

    Captain Happy,

    That tweet was done just as the lockout was ending.

  33. bookje says:

    Captain Happy:
    Наиль Якупов ‏@Nail10_1993

    Finale home Miss u guys ! I hope we will be with some guys in some team :-*

    Wasn’t that upon return from World juniors?

    Even still, I have no idea what that means.

  34. Wes Mantooth-11 says:

    A good point was made on TSN, that the IOC and the Russian ice hockey federation will put so much heat on the KHL that they will soon not allow any signed NHL player to play in the KHL.

    The NHL will simply tell the IOC and the Russian ice hockey federation that the will not participate in the Olympic Games at Sochi because the KHL is not honouring an agreement.

    Another point is that nothing is ratified yet on the CBA, so players can continue to play.

  35. Kris11 says:

    It means Yakupov doesm’t even know how to read and write. Look at theway he wrote those letters down. Not sure why someone who is illiterate would try to tweet. Pretty sad.

    :)

  36. Captain Happy says:

    hunter1909: That’s the sign of a franchise in transition from crap to excellent. The poor teams live in a world of bad news, while great teams live in the sunshine.

    Speaking of, does anyone else think the Red Wings are finished, post Lidstrom?

    Interesting question.

    C:

    Datsyuk

    Filpulla

    Helm

    Emerton

    Nyquist

    Tatar

    Ferraro

    Sheahan

    Jarnkrok

    Andersson

    LW

    Zetterberg

    Miller

    Abdelkader

    Mursak

    RW

    Bertuzzi

    Cleary

    Eaves

    Jurco

    Frk

    Defense

    Kronwall

    Eriksson

    Kindl

    Quincy

    Smith

    White

    Colaiacavo

    While they ail certainly miss Nik (who wouldn’t), I think it’s a pretty fair bet they will make the post season for the 23rd year in a row,

    They’re a little light on RW, it appears Brendan Smith will go a long way to filling a hole on D.

  37. BlacqueJacque says:

    Just to change the subject here to everyone’s favorite topic…

    I don’t think the Oilers are going to buy out Horcoff. I don’t think they can re-sign him after buying him out, and the eerie love affair between Horc/MacT/Lowebellini suggests they may keep him. The Oilers aren’t in dire need of cap space now, though they will need it next year. This of course means that they’re not going to buy him out, because thinking a year ahead isn’t the Tambellowey style.

  38. spoiler says:

    Eberle”s 1st Goal against the Flames was rated 4th best goal since the last lockout on TSN.

  39. hunter1909 says:

    Captain Happy,

    It no doubt impresses you to read from that epic list. Well done!

    Wings are going to start blowing hot/cold as of the start of the season. Just like every crumbling sports dynasty before them. Like Hilary Clinton’s osteoporoses, becoming consumed by some random torrent of an event.

    Oilers meanwhile are basically staring at a decade of cup contention + at very least 2 cup wins, barring the return of gainers foods. Or something.

  40. Lowetide says:

    I’d like to thank Captain Happy for listing the Detroit lineup in such an interesting manner!

  41. spoiler says:

    hunter1909: Captain Happy, It no doubt impresses you to read from that epic list. Well done!

    Wings are going to start blowing hot/cold as of the start of the season. Just like every crumbling sports dynasty before them. Like Hilary Clinton’s osteoporoses, becoming consumed by some random torrent of an event.

    Oilers meanwhile are basically staring at a decade of cup contention + at very least 2 cup wins, barring the return of gainers foods. Or something.

    Yeah!! So there, Captain Happy!!!

  42. Kris11 says:

    Blacque Jacque,

    IMO, It really depends on how well he plays this year (as it probably would have even if he had produced more up until now) and what the market for free agent centers will look like in the off season.

    N.B: His actually salary in 2013/14 will be 4MM and then 3MM in 2014/15 with a cap hit of 5.5 MM, which might make him really, really valuable to a club looking to make the cap floor (with a guy who can play tough minutes and PK) while also not paying loads of cash: e.g. Nashville, Phoenix, Florida, etc.

    It is absolutely true that the Oilers are starting to have cap concerns about how much cap space they will spend at forward. (but there is no point in thinking about Horcoff and buyout or trade until the season is at least part ways through and we see how he is playing.) That will make him hard to keep even if he starts to produce like a 5MM dollar center, but not impossible if you have to pay more to get a better center (especially since there will be another buyout in 2014, right?), and maybe not untradeable either.

    But please let’s not start that now.

    Let’s discuss revised RE’s for Schultz. A million points or a billion?

  43. Captain Happy says:

    hunter1909:
    Captain Happy,

    It no doubt impresses you to read from that epic list. Well done!

    Wings are going to start blowing hot/cold as of the start of the season. Just like every crumbling sports dynasty before them. Like Hilary Clinton’s osteoporoses, becoming consumed by some random torrentof an event.

    Oilers meanwhile are basically staring at a decade of cup contention + at very least 2 cup wins, barringthe return of gainers foods. Or something.

    Winning teams are built from the back end out and down the middle.

    Did you take a gander at Detroit’s centre depth?

    While they certainly need a couple of their young D prospects to step up, expecting them to “blow hot and cold” is just nonsense.

    Tall foreheads have been predicting the Decline and Fall of the Wings for years, but, unlike a team you’re more familiar with, they are managed by some of the best hockey minds in the game.

    Worth noting that Detroit enters this season with more than $10 million in free cap space and that rises to $20 million next season even with the reduced cap.

    I’m pretty sure Holland, Nill & Co. will find some productive ways to spend the Little Caesar’s windfall.

    Oh, and I forgot Damien Brunner….looks like a player.

  44. Captain Happy says:

    Lowetide:
    I’d like to thank Captain Happy for listing the Detroit lineup in such an interesting manner!

    Often, you have to write it on the blackboard.

    Different students have different methods of learning.

    Some don’t learn at all.

  45. Kris11 says:

    “Frk… Colaiacavo”

    Can Colaiacavo sell Frk some vowels for his name?

    I would sell that first “a”, at least, so we could ha e “Coliacovo” and “Frak.” Much better

    Or even “Coliaco” and “Frakov”.

  46. speeds says:

    The Oilers have not been within 13 points of Detroit since the 1990-91 season. Hopefully that year is coming soon!

  47. spoiler says:

    Captain Happy: Often, you have to write it on the blackboard.Different students have different methods of learning.Some don’t learn at all.

    If only D. S. F. was still around to argue with this Captain Happy and his crafty little blackboard.

  48. stevezie says:

    Captain Happy,

    I like Detroits’s depth on D, but it’s hard to love their top end. Ian White is underrated, but if he is your number one you probably aren’t happy about that. Same with Kronwall or whoever your pick for best D is. They could make the playoffs, but they are a long way removed from “cup favourite”. Stuart’s gone too.

    hunter1909:
    Captain Happy,

    Oilers meanwhile are basically staring at a decade of cup contention + at very least 2 cup wins, barringthe return of gainers foods. Or something.

    .
    You’re saying our worst case scenario is two cups? Far be it for me to begrudge a man a positive outlook, but “at very least two cup wins”?
    You want two guarenteed cups buy a bra. This here is the big leagues, aint nobody can be sure of nothin’.

    cabbiesmacker: As a team there’s an outside chance Columbus might.

    This was just terrific.

  49. BlacqueJacque says:

    Kris11:
    Blacque Jacque,

    IMO, It really depends on how well he plays this year (as it probably would have even if he had produced more up until now) and what the market for free agent centers will look like in the off season.

    Yeah, I forgot, he’s way cheaper in actual cash money than he is in cap hit. But the Oilers don’t have the luxury of waiting until the end of the season to buy him out. Not if they want to dodge the cap hit entirely.

  50. Captain Happy says:

    stevezie,

    Yeah, I agree they could use some veteran help on D…thing is…they have the cap space to do so if they can find the right fit.

    They went hard after Suter and came up empty handed but I’m guessing they’re working hard on Plan B.

    Should be interesting to watch.

  51. jb says:

    That Wings team looks like a Datsyuk/Zetterberg injury away from falling hard imo. Listrom’s impact cannot be underestimated… Your talking half a game of cool calm mistake free eliteness. I’m not sure I can put em lower than 8th in the conference right now, but if my prediction from about 6 years ago holds, the wings miss this year.

  52. Kris11 says:

    IMO, the real worry for the Wings isn’t age its goaltending. Howard put up a .920 last year Md the wings were excellemt in terms of GF/GA, bit if he puts up a .910 like he did the prior year or a .900 (which seems plausinle given that he isn’t a prove, elite goalie), then the wings give away 15 to 30 more goals, which would make the decidedly more average (especially with Lidstrom gone and age continuing).

    But if Howard is the real deal, the Wings have a solid lineup elsewhere, and they should be a playoff sure thing again and a contender.

  53. Kris11 says:

    I haz been driking, which is why the spelling.

  54. Captain Happy says:

    spoiler: If only D. S. F. was still around to argue with this Captain Happy and his crafty little blackboard.

    That can be arranged :)

  55. Captain Happy says:

    Kris11:
    IMO, the real worry for the Wings isn’t age its goaltending. Howard put up a .920 last year Md the wings were excellemt in terms of GF/GA, bit if he puts up a .910 like he did the prior year or a .900 (which seems plausinle given that he isn’t a prove, elite goalie), then the wings give away 15 to 30 more goals, which would make the decidedly more average (especially with Lidstrom gone and age continuing).

    But if Howard is the real deal, the Wings have a solid lineup elsewhere, and they should be a playoff sure thing again and a contender.

    The Wings gave up 27.0 shots/game last season (third in the NHL and only a hair behind STL and NJD.

    While I’m sure Lidstrom played a part in that stat, I expect their team defense will still be exceptional.

  56. Captain Happy says:

    Kris11:
    I haz been driking, which is why the spelling.

    Speling while driking is punisshable by statue in most jooridiycshuns.

  57. Gerta Rauss says:

    BlacqueJacque: Yeah, I forgot, he’s way cheaper in actual cash money than he is in cap hit. But the Oilers don’t have the luxury of waiting until the end of the season to buy him out. Not if they want to dodge the cap hit entirely.

    Ummm….what..?

    As the details of the new CBA trickled out, time was exactly what was afforded to the Oilers. Horcoff will be on the Oilers roster on Jan 19, and play 48 games for them this season. In June, they will look at their roster, and if they need cap space, they will buy him out. If they don’t need cap space, he’ll play next season for the Oilers as well.
    In June of 2014, they will look at their roster/cap space again, buy him out if needed, trade him if they can, or play him. The Oilers are in no hurry to do anything with Horcoff.

  58. stevezie says:

    Captain Happy,

    Hey, I’m not betting against Holland, and even if nothing changes they have a decent platoon. Still, it has been awhile since the team acquired a new elite player. I wonder if the condition of Detroit makes it harder for them to attracts FAs?

    Can we trade for Sekera already? Buffalo has 10 NHL ready d-men. I’d also take Leopold, or really anybody. Critiquing Detroit has reminded me how badly we need one more guy. Sure we could all use a top pairing player, but I’ll be satisfied with one more bonafide guy.

  59. raventalon40 says:

    There must be some way to add Omark to that impressive list of Detroit forwards. I wonder if a 3rd round pick would be too much to ask for.

  60. Jesse says:

    I’m kind of baffled about the whole Lubo/NYI thing. Is Brooklyn and the prospect of playing for the Islanders THAT horrific that he can’t even play out one year? I know they don’t look great on paper but really, any team can have a bad year no matter who he goes to. And he’s only got one year left on his contract, he could very well get dealt at the deadline. So he could literally only play there for three months. What’s the big deal?

  61. jb says:

    Captain Happy: That can be arranged

    has DSF re-invented himself? New meds? Shrink says trolling the OIlers board is a bad habit? Surely arguing with ones-self cannot be the answer?

  62. spoiler says:

    raventalon40: There must be some way to add Omark to that impressive list of Detroit forwards. I wonder if a 3rd round pick would be too much to ask for.

    Nevermind.

  63. Captain Happy says:

    stevezie:
    Captain Happy,

    Hey, I’m not betting against Holland, and even if nothing changes they have a decent platoon. Still, it has been awhile since the team acquired a new elite player. I wonder if the condition of Detroit makes it harder for them to attracts FAs?

    Can we trade for Sekera already? Buffalo has 10 NHL ready d-men. I’d also take Leopold, or really anybody. Critiquing Detroit has reminded me how badly we need one more guy. Sure we could all use a top pairing player, but I’ll be satisfied with one more bonafide guy.

    If I was a betting man, I would put money on Alex Edler ending up in Detroit in the next while.

    With their cap situation, the Canucks will be in tough to sign him and under the tutelage of Babcock, I expect he would realize his potential.

    But still, I expect they’ll continue hunting for another top pairing D and they have the cap space to do it.

  64. Lowetide says:

    Brooklyn is two years away, right? And then it’s Rockaway five years after followed by a decade at Coney Island.

  65. Gerta Rauss says:

    Lowetide,

    I think you just covered the plot for 1979′s The Warriors

    Terrific movie.

  66. OilLeak says:

    Jesse,

    Khl is offering more cash than what he is set to earn in the NHL.

  67. spoiler says:

    Clink, clink…

    Warriors! Come out to play-ay!

    Clink, clink.

  68. spoiler says:

    Isn’t Omark signed for the entirety of the season?

  69. Gerta Rauss says:

    spoiler: Isn’t Omark signed for the entirety of the season?

    Yeah, that’s what I’ve read-I don’t think he’s going anywhere.Let’s just hope there is a market for him this summer.

  70. Rocknrolla says:

    spoiler,

    Exxxxxactly….

  71. spoiler says:

    Gerta Rauss: Yeah, that’s what I’ve read-I don’t think he’s going anywhere.Let’s just hope there is a market for him this summer.

    Maybe the Swiss League will be mostly done by the April 5th-ish trade deadline and they”re willing to let him go.

  72. Gerta Rauss says:

    spoiler,

    Hadn’t thought of that-I guess they could trade his NHL rights anytime it’s just a question of when he is available for NHL play.

  73. Rocknrolla says:

    Great little stat I just found. Based on last years final totals for defenseman in the AHL, Justin Schultz with his 48 pts, would end the year and still be the 4th highest scoring Defenceman in the league.

    It’s almost too bad we didn’t get to see what a whole season would have looked like in the A.

  74. spoiler says:

    Is Radek Dvorak still un-signed? Would he be a useful 4th liner slash depth forwad for this team?

  75. spoiler says:

    Gerta Rauss: spoiler, Hadn’t thought of that-I guess they could trade his NHL rights anytime it’s just a question of when he is available for NHL play.

    Just looked it up… last year’s final started on April 3rd. So the League will likely be down to two teams by the deadline. Not a bad chance that he will be available.

  76. oilersfan says:

    Captain Happy

    Take a look at the record of the Red Wings last year when Lidstrom was injured. IIRC they were 2-9 and the two wins were against Columbus and Minnesota when the Wild had 12 AHL players in their liineup.

    Lidstrom made them the team they are. Systems are only so good. You need talent to win. Datsyuk and Zetterberg are like Iginla and Tanguay. Two good players don’t get you into the playoffs.

    The tall foreheads who predicted the Red Wings to miss the playoffs underestimated LIdstrom and assumed his play would drop off.

    Well, its really going to drop off this year.

    Brendan Smith may be really good but he won’t be the best dman in the league anytime soon, and LIdstrom was that for the last 20 years.

    IIRC the Oilers weren’t quite as good after Pronger either LOL. The Ducks, either. Lost an elite defenceman who made everyone around him better, and lots of peoples play will be downgraded to ordinary.

  77. Gerta Rauss says:

    spoiler,

    The Hockey News has Dvorak waiting out the lockout in Florida, although I can’t be sure their site has been updated in months. I think Petrell is blocking any additions of this type of player unfortunately-I’d like to run

    Hall-Gag-Hem
    Yak-Nuge-Ebs
    Smyth-Horc-x

    in the top 9, with Jones pencilled in as 3RW(and I would endorse an upgrade on Jones) That would give them 2 lines that could take on the toughs and the Nuge line gets sheltered. As it stands, they’ve got a lot of forwards and they are going to shoe horn Harski and possibly PRV so I don’t see any room for another forward.

  78. spoiler says:

    Gerta Rauss: spoiler, The Hockey News has Dvorak waiting out the lockout in Florida, although I can’t be sure their site has been updated in months. I think Petrell is blocking any additions of this type of player unfortunately-I’d like to runHall-Gag-HemYak-Nuge-EbsSmyth-Horc-xin the top 9, with Jones pencilled in as 3RW(and I would endorse an upgrade on Jones) That would give them 2 lines that could take on the toughs and the Nuge line gets sheltered. As it stands, they’ve got a lot of forwards and they are going to shoe horn Harski and possibly PRV so I don’t see any room for another forward.

    I expect you’re right.

    I was thinking we could pick up two guys like Morrison and Dvorak. Use Belanger and a pick to get a middling defenseman, and then trade Jones at the deadline. Gice us some real experience on the back end of the roster and some PK depth.

    To tell you the truth, I would use 7 defensemen all season… Keep one winger spot empty and use it to double shift young fast legs.

  79. Gerta Rauss says:

    I’d like to see if Dallas would swap Vern Fiddler for Belanger straight up-similar skillsets and contracts.

    I’m all for beefing up the bottom six with NHL players. And a fucking defenceman.

  80. spoiler says:

    Doug Murray would be my choice for fucking defenseman.

    I don’t mind talking to Buffalo, but I’m thinking the ones they will want to sell won’t be the ones I want to buy. However they’re a great target… Can use scoring and have lots of dmen.

    Sharks are high on Murray too. So likely just as much of a pipe dream. Hooka-level maybe.

    But their top 4 is set with the addition of Stuart and they’re paying Murray a lot to play 3rd pairing and he’s UFA at the end of the year. If they suffer injuries and struggle, I’d definitely be calling at the deadline. And I’d certainly be calling July 1. He’s off the Gill, Mitchell, Sutton tree.

    But it’s just as likely he’ll sign a long extension in exchange for a hometown discount.

  81. Oilertown says:

    Captain Happy: If I was a betting man, I would put money on Alex Edler ending up in Detroit in the next while.

    With their cap situation, the Canucks will be in tough to sign him and under the tutelage of Babcock, I expecthe would realize his potential.

    But still, I expect they’ll continue hunting for another top pairing D and they have the cap space to do it.

    DSF is that you???? Posts look eerily similar.

  82. OilLeak says:

    Well the season is about to start so it makes sense that Taylor Hall would get an
    injury

  83. Zipdot says:

    leadfarmer:
    Might not be a bad idea for him to finish the year in Russia if he so chooses.It is a very good league and he will learn a lot playing there.Most post draft year players arent ready for the NHL including 1st overall picks,

    Name a first overall please as an example. I can’t think of one.

  84. godot10 says:

    If the Leafs were to pay 50% of Komisarek’s cap ($2.25 million per year for two years), Komisarek’s would cost $2.25 million cap hit per year/$1.75 million actual salary per year for two years.

    Does Komisarek have anything left? Can he be a 3rd pairing defenseman? Can he kill penalties?

    The Oilers could buy him out penalty free if he was a bust.

    Is he a possible stopgap option for this season, if the Oilers cannot acquire a legitimate top four guy in a trade?

    Basically, is he capable of playing with Ryan Whitney on the 3rd pairing, and do better than Potter or Teubert or Peckham?

  85. leadfarmer says:

    Zipdot,

    I meant to say they arent ready for the tough matchups in the NHL, and that includes almost all of them. Look I’m not saying that he cant kill the softs, but we have most of our lineup that needs to play the soft competiion or second soft. We dont have a single center that I would feel comfortable facing the top competiion. Hall should be ready to face the top competition on left wing. Eberle is not quite ready and Hemsky should not either

  86. dessert1111 says:

    Yakupov: No one he doesn’t play for the Oilers this year. I wouldn’t mind letting his ELC slide for a year — it’s likely better value — but he’s good enough to make the team now and with this apparent worry about the KHL enticing players to stay, well all the more reason why he should play in the NHL this year.

    Why does everyone want to trade Jones? Who is this magic player that we have in the system or can trade Jones for that can score 15+ goals a year, PK effectively, is proven, is not too old and has shown legitimate signs of improvement at least over a three year span? Yeah sure trade him if someone is overpaying for him, but why oh why does everyone want to talk about trading Eberle and Jones and Petry or whoever else when they are actually producing? If someone is being traded, why not make it players that might have value to other teams but aren’t playing well in Edmonton, i.e. Eager, Belanger, etc?

  87. Нинтендо⁶⁴ says:

    A healthy Klefbom might be ready too. Don’t want to save ELC just for the sake of saving it or acting out of fear. Fine with Nail finishing out in the khl and starting next year if it’s the best for his development.

  88. jp says:

    Staying this season in the KHL wouldn’t be bad for Yakupov, but like Schultz, i think he’s shown he’s ready for the NHL. There’s not much reason to keep him there when he could be learning what he needs to on the job in the NHL.

    Klefbom too – his play early this season suggests he’s ready to come to NA next year. He’ll likely start out in the AHL since he’s coming back from injury, but he looks like he’s very close to NHL ready.

  89. Maestro Fresh Mess says:

    jp,

    TSN is reporting 6 games only for this season.

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