WE WAIT

The MOU remains unsigned but the ruMOUrs are out there, and depending on how deep into the abyss you’d like to go there are names like Michael Del Zotto, Zack Bogosian and others being mentioned as available. I don’t buy a word of it–suspect Wade Redden is available, though–but the best thing about it isn we won’t have to wait much longer.

I was listening to Jason Gregor on Team 1260 that night. Jason was doing 9-midnight (that was his timeslot at the time) and I was about to click off (as was he) and head to bed. I believe the theme music was playing–Jason was ending the show–and then he stopped everything and delivered the Pronger trade news. I damn near fell of my chair (my wife, in her typical fashion, looked over and said “what the hell is the matter with you?”) and I stuttered the words–PRONGER to Edmonton for Eric Brewer, Jeff Woywitka and Doug Lynch.

Man.

Peca arrived soonafter and Smyth, Horcoff, Hemsky, Pisani, Smith, Staios and the rest played their hearts out and once the goalie arrived they were in the penthouse suite.

AGAIN?

bardot77

I don’t know that we would ever want the Oilers to go whale hunting again–keeping the kids onside for a decade seems like a better plan–but if there’s a smart, value deal available perhaps this is the best day to do it. Ship out the prospect or pick involved, bring that guy in for Monday’s skate and start making that chemistry happen.

We wait.

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54 Responses to "WE WAIT"

  1. Ducey says:

    I’d settle for a Smid signing. They cannot afford to lose him as a UFA.

  2. hunter1909 says:

    Last season they had the Big Three.

    Now they have the The Five.

    Point being, they really don’t fucking need anyone until they see what they’re holding with The Five.

    Uber-talents will find a way to win no matter what. Trading away genius has been a hallmark of this most fucked up of franchises. If they show me they’re simply going to run this team as poorly as before, well, then I no longer need to be an Oiler fan.

  3. hunter1909 says:

    Of course none of The Five are going anywhere. They’re kids who all love the idea of playing together, with people just like themselves.

    AGENT TO TOP LEVEL BOTTOM 6 PLAYER : “We offer you to the Oilers on a one or two year contract, and those kids will make your next contract offer increase by 50%.”

    It’s not the time to go California Golden Seals on us, Mr. Katz.

  4. hunter1909 says:

    @Lowetide: That banter between you and Bruce re the Tigers(in particular the fight in the stands part) was classic. Absolutely first class.

  5. Lowetide says:

    Bohologo:
    I was watching Game One in Tokyo that spring, and when Pronger scored on that penalty shot, I thought to myself, holy hell, we are going to win the Cup.

    So everything that happened after that is my fault, for thinking that and raising the ire of the hockey gods, who went on to smite all of us.

    Did the same thing. Ran around the house like an idiot. Screamed, scared the neighbors. God paid me back for the 1980s fan arrogance.

    And then some.

  6. Zack says:

    Like you said LT, I don’t know if the Oil will ever be involved within a trade with that magnitude for some time. A similar trade to this day would have to bring in someone like Suter/Weber. I too would be content with a long term Smid signing. And you usually pick much better girls LT on here than at ON. ;)

  7. murphy says:

    I read on a montreal canadian fans site this morning – yak to montreal, subban to philly, couturier to oilers. It’s obviously not going to happen but i don’t think i would protest the deal. We could use a big 2 way second line C who fits in our cluster.

  8. Ryan says:

    Let’s be honest, Kruger has been given the keys to the Ferrari. With any Ferrari, you have a narrow window to win the cup and there are no guarantees. Just ask Beaudreau…

    That being said, I know LT’s generally given me the impression that he’s been opposed to tanking for number one picks. Looking back as miserable as it has been, was it the right thing to do? Moral objections aside, holy smokes look what we’ve got to throw over the boards now.

    With the recent cba and climate in the league, it’s been pretty much impossible to significantly improve a team without building thru the draft aka tanking for top picks. We could be Calgary or Toronto right now.

    Even look at teams like San Jose or Detroit who’re clearly run by smart hockey men. Detroit’s been successful on the ice, but there’s no question that their team has eroded. San Jose has done the same. Top line guys age +/- retire and new skill coming thru draft or trade isn’t enough to maintain e team let alone improve it.

    While tanking for top picks may leave an unsettling feeling in your stomach (just doesn’t feel right), there’s no question that the basement to penthouse model seems to be the most efficient strategy.

    What was it LT used to describe the Schultz signing? Manna from heaven, lol? Very true.

    I’d be more inclined to expect this team to stand pat before hopefully filling in need on d though the sooner it’s done, the better.

  9. Wolfie says:

    murphy:
    I read on a montreal canadian fans site this morning – yak to montreal, subban to philly, couturier to oilers. It’s obviously not going to happen but i don’t think i would protest the deal. We could use a big 2 way second line C who fits in our cluster.

    There had better be more to it for the Oilers. Turning Yakupov into Couturier might fill a perceived need. But that’s not equal value. If it was Couturier and Coburn I might listen.

  10. stevezie says:

    I’ve spent a lot of time trying to figure out if I should be fantasizing about getting Subban or Ryan O’Rielly (or Couturier, for that matter). A D-man or a centre? We need both.

    I’ve decided to stick with D-man. If we get a centre we have to decide what to d with Gagner and Horcoff. If we get the D we can stop wondering what to do with Potter and Peckham. It’s a simpler fantasy.

  11. justDOit says:

    I thought the networks would be pumping this ‘trade-deadline day in reverse’ with more gusto. Teams have a very short window to get a new face into the lineup, and the GMs have probably been talking in theoretical terms about who and how much.

    I’m assuming that the instant the ratification is announced, they’ll wave the flag to start trading. ?

  12. justDOit says:

    Oh, and I would be fine with Couturier coming in, but would rather see a high pick and Hemsky going the other way, or something like that.

  13. speeds says:

    I don’t really expect EDM to trade for a D now, personally I think it’s more likely they look at such a move nearer the deadline, if they’re still in the playoff race.

    Here’s a question though – say EDM’s out of the playoff race and Whitney’s played fairly well this year without injury. Re-sign him, or trade him at the deadline (assuming you can get a good deal for him)?

  14. Lowetide says:

    speeds: I’d sign him if he’s healthy. Sign Whitney and Smid, then you’ve got Petry-Schultz as the other part of the top 4 and N Schultz for the third pairing and to bring along Klefbom.

  15. justDOit says:

    speeds,

    but I’ve been promised a wow trade, and – and – an…

  16. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide,

    I had an identical discussion this week re: Whitney and the Oilers playoff race. The question becomes one of timing, in my opinion. If Klefbom were another season closer to the NHL when Whitney’s contract was expiring, then the issue is an easy one: flip the veteran for a pick and make room for the new kid.

    Unfortunately it isn’t that easy.

    That being said, I think Whitney has a place here, and if he needs to be traded in two years’ time to make room for another younger body (Klefbom) then you’ve likely at least retained the asset if not perhaps improved his value as a result of playing with a strong group of forwards.

    The trick will be the numbers on Smid and Whitney. They should average out to approximately the same sum, with some of Whitney’s current money going to Smid, and Whitney perhaps getting a slightly lower dollar amount this time around.

  17. Mr DeBakey says:

    Headline on the front page of this morning’s Globe & Mail
    “How Shane Doan Saved the NHL Season”

    My first thought – Steve Kelly wudda had her done by Christmas.

  18. Gerta Rauss says:

    speeds:
    Here’s a question though – say EDM’s outof the playoff race and Whitney’s played fairly well this year without injury.Re-sign him, or trade him at the deadline (assuming you can get a good deal for him)?

    If he’s healthy I’d sign him as well-or at least make him an offer prior to the deadline. I don’t think he can expect the same $4M he’s currently getting, and I wouldn’t give him term either, but he seems to be part of the veteran group that interacts well with the kids.
    If you get a sense that he won’t sign or is asking for the moon, then, yeah, see what you can get for him at the deadline.

  19. Bar_Qu says:

    Ryan,

    I suspect that the Oil sucking to get last place & a top pick the last few years is one reason why the NHL closed that particular avenue of improvement in this CBA. Now all a team can do is hope their name comes up first in the lottery. (at least that is what i understand the new draft rules look like-all 14 non-playoff teams go in the draw, with no limit to how high up you move up)

  20. gd says:

    Wouldn’t it be ironic if the Oilers trade coming out of the lockout is for Brewer. TB is going to have to shed some some salary and I don’t think they can afford the buyout on Lecavalier. I think the Oilers best bet is to get some slightly overpaid, but valuable vet D man like Brewer, Martin or Tyutin to bridge the gap until Klefbom et al are ready.

    Personally I don’t think they should be making any trades right now as this season is going to be such a crapshoot and this isn’t that important a year for the Oilers as their goal should be Cup contention by 2014-15. I truly believe with the short year and great draft, that between 5 and 10 teams, who get off to disappointing starts, will become sellers very early in the season, and that will be the best time to pick up a bargain on the trade market, especially because that Anaheim 2nd rd could be a realy valuable trade chip. The only reason the Oilers should be trading this week is if some team is doing a “fire-sale”, panic moves where they can pick up a “quarter for two dimes”. Unfortunately, I don’t think there are as many Milburys in the league as there used to be.

  21. sliderule says:

    Lowetide
    Have you heard anything about Klefbom?Did he have his surgery and if so how is his recovery.
    I rely on you for the source of all hockey news and I hear nothing.

  22. "Steve Smith" says:

    My favourite reaction to the Pronger trade was Shawn Horcoff’s. He apparently learned about it from a ticker on a sports network reading “Oilers trade for Pronger” or something to that effect, and his reaction was “Sean Pronger? We don’t need him!”

    What a proud franchise.

  23. Lowetide says:

    sliderule:
    Lowetide
    Have you heard anything about Klefbom?Did he have his surgery and if so how is his recovery.
    I rely on you for the source of all hockey news and I hear nothing.

    Just the late Nov confirm of surgery
    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2012/11/klefbom-surgery.html

  24. justDOit says:

    Bar_Qu:
    Ryan,

    I suspect that the Oil sucking to get last place & a top pick the last few years is one reason why the NHL closed that particular avenue of improvement in this CBA. Now all a team can do is hope their name comes up first in the lottery. (at least that is what i understand the new draft rules look like-all 14 non-playoff teams go in the draw, with no limit to how high up you move up)

    TSN reported that the lottery will work the same as before, but with the 4 place movement rule gone and 14 teams eligible. So the weighting on the last place team is still pretty favorable, but the number of teams will water down your chances considerably. No details on weighting for all 14 teams though.

    Gives the Oilers a better chance at still getting a #1st OA while pushing for the playoffs. Wouldn’t that be something!

  25. Southern Oil says:

    Gerta Rauss: If he’s healthy I’d sign him as well-or at least make him an offer prior to the deadline. I don’tthink he can expect the same $4M he’s currently getting, and I wouldn’t give him term either, but he seems to be part of the veteran group that interacts well with the kids.
    If you get a sense that he won’t sign or is asking for the moon, then, yeah, see what you can get for him at the deadline.

    Agreed – if he’s healthy I think you need to resign him. After all the trouble we have seen the last few years with this defense (rookies & injuries) – sending out a health Whitney at the deadline for a pick and prospect makes 0 sense to me. At some point, this team needs to start thinking less about picks and prospects and more about making the next step. Then you can bring about Klefbom slower and not Lander him.

  26. dessert1111 says:

    If there is a big trade I’d rather a C coming back than a D at this point, I think. We might be fine in goal and the D crop is slowly arriving, and Whitney might be healthy, etc. Is that a smart way to start the season? Not really, but it’s a very short season with so many unknowns and I would be fine if they used this sprint to get more info on some of their roster questions (dubnyk, gagner) and see more development on their prospects to make a splash this summer, especially because that’s when you can get rid of some cap room.

    That being said, if the Oilers get a top 10 pick this year, there are tonnes of good centres available. Maybe just a guy to knock Peckham and Potter to the press box when all are healthy is the best option.

  27. PunjabiOil says:

    This is the time to offer MPS, Teubert, and 2 second round picks package to acquire an NHL contributor.

    There are always bad GMs out there.

    Exploit them.

    Really a fan of trading the 2nd and 3rd round picks for NHL players. It’s what Sutter did, and the strategy worked for an extended period of time.

    Guys like Mike Ribeiro or Zbynek Michalek were available for a mere 2nd round pick. Have to start taking chances like that if you want your team to go deep.

  28. DeadmanWaking says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    My favourite reaction to the Pronger trade was Shawn Horcoff’s.He apparently learned about it from a ticker on a sports network reading “Oilers trade for Pronger” or something to that effect, and his reaction was “Sean Pronger?We don’t need him!”

    What a proud franchise.

    I recall that line, too, but I didn’t know it was Horcoff.

    Fernando Pisani picked off a cross-ice pass from Stillman and streaked in short-handed, and beat Cam Ward top right corner (glove side) with a left-handed shot, to score the first short-handed overtime goal in Finals history, giving the Oilers the upset win.

    This is the best example I know of Kahneman’s retrospective bias. What would you pay for this goal … before it happens? Certainly enough to cover Pisani’s overpay on his next contract–which he had pretty much already earned in full by one of the most perfectly-timed performance crescendos in all of modern sports.

    If it hadn’t been for this superhuman performance, he would have been offered a lot less, and might even have earned it, despite his health difficulties. Then the complainers would have had to find something or someone else to complain about, such as how Pisani had never really been a useful cog on a winning team in the first place.

    Personally, I would kneel down and kiss the Pisani overpay. Then I would take our 5 on 3 powerplay out behind the shed with a semi-automatic shotgun and shred it to cabbage. Sorry MacT, it’s bullwhip time. I’ve seen preseason teams execute with better form.

    One of these post-CBA miracle kisses is not like the other.

    We had the puck a lot in that last game. Every pass through the neutral zone went two to five feet off target or bounced over a stick. Nerves. So close we could taste it.

    That was the problem with losing Roloson. When the time came to bend Carolina onto the mat, we weren’t in the frame of mind of a better team sealing the deal. We played like we really were Cinderella, ensconced for the first time in the prince’s boudoir and it is very, very late on a dark and stormy evening with the moon rising high in the sky, and finally you see the prince walking his favorite mount through the front gate, and you see the horse favouring a foreleg–and he doesn’t know about your little midnight problem, and he’s looking way too concerned about animal welfare and he’s not tapping his wrist impatiently. And even if he arrives directly without a moment’s hesitation, it’s too late … your nerves are shot.

    Man, with this crew, we’ve got some business to put to bed redeeming some of those sloppy 5 on 3s in the final round. Is my memory playing tricks on me, or did we not go a full minute with a two man advantage without generating a shot on net?

  29. Rebilled says:

    Crazy that the original Pronger contract would have just ended at the start of this season. 2006 really had it’s highs and lows. A real Edmonton drop of doom. Sean Pronger really bullied his way outta town.

    Wondered when the Couturier rumours would start. Did the Nuge play with him at the jr.s¿ Would like to see him here, even if he was born in Phoenix.

    There will be no wow trade.

  30. speeds says:

    justDOit: TSN reported that the lottery will work the same as before, but with the 4 place movement rule gone and 14 teams eligible. So the weighting on the last place team is still pretty favorable, but the number of teams will water down your chances considerably. No details on weighting for all 14 teams though.

    Gives the Oilers a better chance at still getting a #1st OA while pushing for the playoffs. Wouldn’t that be something!

    It depends what you mean by “pretty favorable”. Under the most recent weighting system, the worst team had a 48.2% chance of retaining the 1st overall pick, but only had a 25% of winning the lottery outright and a 23.2% chance that one of the teams ranked 6-14 would win the lottery, but not move high enough up to pass the #1 team.

    So, if the old odds are retained for each slot (I’ve heard some suggestion that they’ll be flattened out a bit, but that could just be speculation), the worst team will see a pretty sharp reduction in their chances of picking #1, down from 48.2% to 25%. Still the highest of any single team, and assuming only 1 team is drawn finishing last would still guarantee a top 2 pick, but reduced odds nonetheless.

  31. Rebilled says:

    TSN has us coming in 9th in the West.

    Can you draw some flying wangs, devils horns or an eye patch on that photo? All photos of Sean Pronger should be fully desecrated.

  32. wordbird says:

    not to threadjack, but i’m curious – there’s likely a number of season ticket holders that read Lowetide… have you decided to keep the tickets and continue going to games? or are some of you more of the mind of this Capitals blogger and are no longer going to support the team in that way?

  33. Bos8 says:

    I look at the center slot and my enthusiasm gets tempered in a hurry. Gagner, Horcoff, Belanger – oh boy.

  34. Marc says:

    PunjabiOil:

    Really a fan of trading the 2nd and 3rd round picks for NHL players.It’s what Sutter did, and the strategy worked for an extended period of time.

    Calgary lost in the first round 4 times, missed the playoffs 3 times and have one of the worst prospect pools in hockey.

    I’m not sure I’d describe this as a strategy that worked.

  35. justDOit says:

    speeds,

    Thx for the details on the current draft system. Compared to and even weighting through all 14 non-playoff teams, which would result in about 7%, I would say that a 25% chance is still pretty favorable.

  36. justDOit says:

    Rebilled:
    TSN has us coming in 9th in the West.

    Can you draw some flying wangs, devils horns or an eye patch on that photo? All photos of Sean Pronger should be fully desecrated.

    print this out then: http://www.jtbourne.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/06/pronger-douche.jpg

  37. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Rebilled: Crazy that the original Pronger contract would have just ended at the start of this season. 2006 really had it’s highs and lows.

    Not true. The Pronger deal expired in 2010. It was a five-year deal that was signed here in the immediate aftermath of the trade, which of course was in 2005 even as we all tend to default to “2006″ when we think of CFP.

    Anaheim dumped Pronger to Philly in 2009 for “assets” when it became apparent they wouldn’t be able to re-sign him, with an end result that CFP played in 3 Stanley Cup Finals for 3 different teams under the life of that contract he signed in Edmonton. The Flyers then signed him to a retirement pact which it seems he will collect on LTIR for the duration.

  38. Bruce McCurdy says:

    speeds: So, if the old odds are retained for each slot (I’ve heard some suggestion that they’ll be flattened out a bit, but that could just be speculation), the worst team will see a pretty sharp reduction in their chances of picking #1, down from 48.2% to 25%

    Under the new system, New Jersey would have gotten the #1 OV in 2011, rather than moving up from #8 to #4. So maybe they would have got RNH, & Oilers would have had the choice of Landeskog, Huberdeau, & Larsson at #2. Or maybe NJD would have taken Larsson anyway & things wouldn’t have changed at all.

  39. Rebilled says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    sorry, thought it was a 7 year deal.

  40. Bruce McCurdy says:

    hunter1909:
    @Lowetide: That banter between you and Bruce re the Tigers(in particular the fight in the stands part) was classic. Absolutely first class.

    Haha, thanks, hadn’t thought of that shit show for a long time. That was hockey in 1972 — the Big Bad Bruins ruling the roost in the NHL, the Broad Street Bullies emerging, the WHA kicking off with all sorts of wacky ideas and wonky hockey, the Islanders and Flames joining the NHL and further depleting the “talent” pool, Bobby Clarke slashing Valeri Kharlamov in the Summit Series, and the Gassoff Gang making headlines in junior hockey. Roller derby was in vogue round about then, and while Rollerball and Slapshot were still in our future there were real fears that hockey was going down the chute as a legitimate sport.

    So happens I’m going to dinner tonight with my (still!) bro-in-law; if I remember I’ll ask him what he remembers of that night & what his first impressions of hockey were. It was his first visit to Canada, so a real eye-opener to say the least. Not enough to scare him off, since he lives here now! But he still likes rugby more than hockey. :)

  41. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Rebilled:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    sorry, thought it was a 7 year deal.

    Nope, just the 5. The one Philly re-signed him to in 2009 was a near-fiasco; he was 34 when he signed but turned 35 before it kicked in, so the league treated it as a 35+. The big long tail that Philly built into it to lower the cap hit was poised to bite them seriously in the ass because of that miscalculation, but they are surely off the hook now cuz Pronger is done with legitimate (and scary bad) health concerns. They’ll have to pay him, but their cap won’t be compromised the way it could/should have been.

    If you’re into trade winners and losers, Oilers basically lost the Pronger trade for each of the four years remaining in his contract throughout which time he remained one of the top rearguards in the game, but since 2010 they have been big winners with Smid and Eberle both emerging as key players while Pronger himself would have been free to walk that summer.

  42. Gerta Rauss says:

    http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=4&id=192481&lang=en

    Brandon Davidson skating again-shooting for early Feb return-so he’ll add some depth to the OKC roster

  43. Lowetide says:

    That’s a wonderful story. Davidson’s story is epic and he’s still a kid.

  44. "Steve Smith" says:

    DeadmanWaking: I recall that line, too, but I didn’t know it was Horcoff.

    I’ve been unable to source it, but I have a fairly strong independent recollection of it being reported at the time. Not that my fairly strong independent recollections have always proven right in the past.

  45. jp says:

    Gerta Rauss:
    http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?catid=4&id=192481&lang=en

    Brandon Davidson skating again-shooting for early Feb return-so he’ll add some depth to the OKC roster

    Great to hear.

  46. Lowetide says:

    “Steve Smith”: I’ve been unable to source it, but I have a fairly strong independent recollection of it being reported at the time.Not that my fairly strong independent recollections have always proven right in the past.

    I believe I saw this exact line on Matlock.

  47. Нинтендо⁶⁴ says:

    Long odds that they bring in the Tambellini rule to close the barn after the horse is gone and Oilers finish 9th in the West and Steve wins the lottery. So it pretty much will happen.

  48. Marc says:

    So, if the RFA offer sheet thresholds remain the same in this CBA, an offer sheet for Del Zotto that is more than $5.42M and less than $6.27M would put the Rangers over the cap this season and would only cost a first, second and third round pick in this year’s draft.

    If the Rangers match, it would also mean that they would be within $1M-$2M of next years cap with only 18 players under contract. Even if they buy out Redden and Gaborik at the end of the season, they would have only $14M-$15M to sign 7 players, including McDonagh, Stepan and Hagelin.

    Hmmmm…..

  49. godot10 says:

    Marc:
    So, if the RFA offer sheet thresholds remain the same in this CBA, an offer sheet for Del Zotto that is more than $5.42M and less than $6.27M would put the Rangers over the cap this season and would only cost a first, second and third round pick in this year’s draft.

    If the Rangers match, it would also mean that they would be within $1M-$2M of next years cap with only 18 players under contract.Even if they buy out Redden and Gaborik at the end of the season, they would have only $14M-$15M to sign 7 players, including McDonagh, Stepan and Hagelin.

    Hmmmm…..

    As much as I want another defenseman, an offer sheet now with Smid and Whitney unsigned for next year is not particularly wise.

    Del Zotto at over $5 million is not a value contract. Particularly since the Oilers have a better power play option in Justin Schultz.

    Cost effectiveness is important also.

    Hjallmarsson might be available in a reasonable trade, with a much better contract .

  50. BONVIE says:

    Ducey,

    I think a blockbuster deal for Tyler Myers is looming.

  51. Ryan says:

    Haha, that was awesome.

    The same thing was in the back of my mind.

    Are you really Russian or is that just a cool looking handle for this blog?

    Нинтендо⁶⁴:
    Long odds that they bring in the Tambellini rule to close the barn after the horse is gone and Oilers finish 9th in the West and Steve wins the lottery. So it pretty much will happen.

  52. speeds says:

    BONVIE:
    Ducey,

    I think a blockbuster deal for Tyler Myersis looming.

    That’s kind of out of the blue, have you heard something along those lines?

  53. Нинтендо⁶⁴ says:

    Ryan,

    No. Grabbed the Cyrillic Nintendo 64 handle last year when Oilers got N64.

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