A WONDERLIC FOR THE OILERS’ BRASS

From here, there are only positives in claiming Roman Hamrlik this moring. He played 19 minutes a night one year ago and his BTN playing card is solid deep into his career. Here are my positives:

  1. There isn’t enough an argument on planet earth available to convince a rational person that Hamrlik is worse than all 8 Oiler defensemen.
  2. Asking waivers on 3 of the Oilers current D qualifies as “low risk” and “so what if they’re claimed?”
  3. Maybe he helps, maybe you trade him at the deadline.
  4. At least you’re sending a message to your team that the management isn’t giving up.

Sadly, Hamrlik is likely to be claimed by Columbus or Calgary or Florida or Buffalo or Colorado. That’s right, the Oilers are the 7th worst team in the NHL this morning.

Progress.

I’m absolutely amazed that the Oilers ran Ryan Smyth out at center again. The last time they did, Smyth ended up getting a HS and dragging his wingers around last night must have been a special hell. Hey, he’s well paid and all that, but VandeVelde doesn’t cut it and Smyth has uses but this isn’t one of them. Don’t know why this is more galling than a half dozen other moves, but for me it is and the center position continues to be an elevator shaft. Man o Man.

On a night when his other right wingers were Jordan Eberle, Ales Hemsky and Ryan Jones, Ralph Krueger played  Mike Brown 11:10.

nwma6

 

There’s a little clearance now for Vancouver, even a crack for the Wild, but the 3-4-5 slots are up in the air this morning. Calgary has two games  in hand, Colorado one.  I find it incredible that the Oilers are third in the division in GF, they don’t seem to be able to score at all.

5x5

The 5×5/60 numbers are coming into focus now, they’ve flown enough sorties for the cream to rise. Nuge is unlikely to recover to last season’s totals (1.98/60) as we’re halfway through the shortened season. He’s about 5 EV points off last season’s pace based on his current TOI and point total. I don’t remember a player having better looks while getting nothing, especially a guy who posted good numbers a year ago.

I keep waiting for the flood, but it isn’t coming. He got caught on a breakaway last night and he had a brilliant chance late in the slot and the puck didn’t get within 10 miles of the net.

He’s rolling snake eyes.

The toughest part of  the schedule–I say, I say–the toughest part of the schedule is straight ahead. Detroit, Nashville, Chicago, three games in four days and one would think two points from those games is a bit of a reach based on their current performance level.

How many of these guys are hurt? Eberle seems to be off, Nuge too and of course Hall’s hammy means that drive isn’t as dynamic currently.

I bet Hamrlik is a Flame by the time I get home from work, but the Oilers should put in a claim.

I’d like to see the Oilers sign Martin Gernat soon. Great draft pick for where they got him, Guy Flaming told me on the radio show last Saturday he felt the club might send him to Europe for a year (felt he was too raw for AHL duty right away). I’ve noticed other teams cleaning up their signings of these players who are eligible to return to the draft, it would be nice to see the Oilers get this fellow signed.

I think we should prepare ourselves for Laddy Smid to be dealt at the deadline. I don’t agree with it, but the club apparently isn’t negotiating with him yet and that’s one of the “tells” for Oiler management. Hemsky was signed just before the trade deadline, we may see that with Smid, too. However, it might take a few words from Taylor Hall to get it done.

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181 Responses to "A WONDERLIC FOR THE OILERS’ BRASS"

  1. regwald says:

    With the Oilers lack of quality NHL dmen, they should try to lock up Smid for 3 or 4 years. It boggles my mind how the mgmt team for the Oilers evaluate players.

    11+ minutes of ice for Brown … wow, that energy level really showed last night. Doh.

  2. BlacqueJacque says:

    Given how often you invoke Taylor Hall in management decisions, perhaps we’ve found our new captain and GM in one. If only he could serve as shadow GM (president of hockey ops klowe), we might be safe.

    Fire MacT while you’re at it.

  3. Lucinius says:

    If the Oilers trade Smid i may throw up. He’s not having a great year.. but he’s, at worst, the second best defenseman this year on the Oilers even with his dip in play.. and a lot of his “bad play” defensively is the result of him ending up running around trying to cope with other players’ mistakes, especially those of Petry who’s had a large fall off in his defensive zone play.

  4. godot10 says:

    You don’t start negotiations early if you think there is going to be a huge gap between the offer and the ask. It just gets the player mad, and there is no movement till near the deadline anyways.

    Those Ryan Smyth negotiations worked out really well back in 2007 with a huge spread between the offer and the ask, when both sides started negotiating a year before the deadline in the press.

    Getting Smid under $4 million per season and for four years or less is going to be tough.

    Josh Geoges 6 years, $3.9 million per. Methot, who everyone here argued was a 3rd pairing defenseman, got 3 years, $3 million per.

    It makes perfect sense to not start negotiating till a week before the trade deadline. Term and dollar amount are both “dangerous” in the Smid contract, which is why you want a short negotiating period.

  5. sliderule says:

    It’s to bad Capitals didn’t wait a week to waive Hamrlik as by then we would be in a better position to claim him.
    Speaking of draft signings the haven’t signed Reider yet .

  6. godot10 says:

    Gernat was injured. Reider had a slow start to the season. Both are low round picks probably with agents looking for money better than their slotted draft position.

    It might not be the Oilers fault.

  7. FrankenOil says:

    Someone last night mentioned they were amazed that the Oilers re-signed Hordichuk. Adding to that, how bad does it look that they gave Smyth a 2 year deal? Upgrading the 4th line next year will be difficult (nee impossible) with Eager, Smyth, Belanger and Brown all signed through next year. That alone is a firing-worthy offense. What other NHL team has that many bottom of the roster players on long-term deals? Toss in the fact we know they have a love affair with Jones and Horc has 3 years to go, how does the team improve itself? Brutal to say the least.

  8. DBO says:

    Smid is having an off year so that means value contract. Like Hemsky last year, his trade value is down and the cap drops so 3 yrs at $3.5 looks about right at the high end.

    The Hamrlik waiver will be a huge tell from the org. If no attempt is made to improve our club and we hear talk of being confident in our team and they are close to turning it around, then that shows that this year we are happy “learning “. Zero accountability means no need to do anything. This team has made ok trades and terrible signings. We consistently overvalue our players and far too often our season hinges on a lot of “hope that guy turns it around or hope that guy is back to 100%”. Teams like Nashville make “safe ” bets and are a model of consistency. We make long shot bets that rarely pay off. We will never win with that plan. The next week is the test. We improve our club with new additions or we are tanking again and if we suddenly go on a run then great.

    MacT is not the VP of common sense, he is the Vp of back slapping and same old same old. Clear the decks Katz, time to change the culture. The only consistent thing the last 6-7 yrs is management. The players and coaches have changed but the results haven’t. Last change is management,all of them. Time to shake it up, they have done nothing but sell Katz on a good team in time for the arena. Sorry, but that is not good enough.

  9. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    “Roman Hamrlik”

    Yes please. Also, waive 44, trade 6. And, find Janne Niinimaa.

    “On a night when his other right wingers were Jordan Eberle, Ales Hemsky and Ryan Jones, Ralph Krueger played Mike Brown 11:10.”

    Gary Clark won the game for us! Without him we don’t get that regulation win! Thank god we’re tougher! Go Gary Go!

    “I find it incredible that the Oilers are third in the division in GF, they don’t seem to be able to score at all.”

    I think this shows there’s a lot of trouble scoring going around. Also, the whistles have been parked early this year (short season and all).

    “I’ve noticed other teams cleaning up their signings of these players who are eligible to return to the draft, it would be nice to see the Oilers get this fellow signed.”

    As you note bellow (Re: Hemsky, Smid), this is a team that can’t even manage in-house deals in a timely fashion, when there’s nothing else going on and there are 4000 people in higher mgt. positions.

    This team only moves on in-house deals early when it is of little consequence (Sutton), or an overpay out of touch with the market and the coming of a new CBA (eberle).

  10. godot10 says:

    FrankenOil:
    Someone last night mentioned they were amazed that the Oilers re-signed Hordichuk. Adding to that, how bad does it look that they gave Smyth a 2 year deal? Upgrading the 4th line next year will be difficult (nee impossible) with Eager, Smyth, Belanger and Brown all signed through next year. That alone is afiring-worthy offense.What other NHL team has that many bottom of the roster players on long-term deals? Toss in the fact we know they have a love affair with Jones and Horc has 3 years to go, how does the team improve itself? Brutal to say the least.

    The Oilers have two penalty-free buyouts.

  11. jimbones100 says:

    The D has looked decent and as a group I don’t mind them. The forwards are the primary concern at the moment.

    We should have at least one veteran line that can play big minutes and perform in both zones (horcoff, hemsky, smyth) is our best option. This veteran line would take most of the tough minutes and the pressure of the kid line. The kid line can then perform as our number two line.

    The third and fourth lines need to be another developing line. I am thinking 89 centering Magnus, Yak. And the fourth line has to be another line that Ralph is fully capable of playing in defensive assignments (Belanger, Jones , Harti).

    Injuries are a bugger but they happen to all teams and that is why u don’t have roster spots for guys who cannot contribute.

    That group of forwards for the last two game is a absolute mess. Those lines put way to much pressure on the kids to carry the team and put up big numbers.

    Are the kids hurting? Maybe. But the larger issue is that they are kids and first overall are not the season should not soley rest on their shoulders.

    Tell me. Other than the kid line all performing above projections what is the reasonable Plan B for this club to make the playoffs?

  12. hunter1909 says:

    What about this for management giving a signal?

    How about buying Horcoff out this summer? Or is he Oiler’s very own Justin Bieber?

    A more loathsome captain for a hockey team at this level is hard to imagine; injury prone wimp, incredible superstar salary to help suck the life out of the dressing room, zero leadership skills other than blowing those on top, which conversely suggests he’s an absolute puke to those he deigns beneath him – and at 5-6-7 million whatever he makes a year, I imagine that’s abut 3/4 of the dressing room.

    “I’m the captain of the Edmonton Oilers” Horcoff to the kids every chance he gets.

  13. pboy says:

    DBO:

    MacT is not the VP of common sense, he is the Vp of back slapping and same old same old. Clear the decks Katz, time to change the culture. The only consistent thing the last 6-7 yrs is management. The players and coaches have changed but the results haven’t. Last change is management,all of them. Time to shake it up, they have done nothing but sell Katz on a good team in time for the arena. Sorry, but that is not good enough.

    Amen.

    It’s time for a true house cleaning here. The three headed monster in management needs to go. Throw some of the pharma-money at Jim Nill, let Kreuger have a real training camp and bring in some actual NHL players. Time for Katz to wake up.

  14. Racki says:

    If I’m not mistaken, signing Hamrlik should put us at 50 contracts (which of course is the max limit for pro contracts for a team). The Oilers could stand to make some waiver moves of their own though like Hordichuk, for starters (although he’d likely clear). The Oilers are going to have to start moving some bodies out soon.

  15. hunter1909 says:

    MacT lmao.

    Worthlessness to any winning hockey team personified.

    Like Horcoff, a bundle of excuses and veiled threats accompanies this twit wherever he goes.

    Say MacT fanboys, where’s that NHL coach job he was all but guaranteed to be offered, as the country fair Oiler’s bullshit machine hype used to blow out regularly?

  16. FrankenOil says:

    To compound things, I noticed that Colin MacDonald score last night for the Islanders so I wanted to see what his basic numbers were AND , AS A REGULAR HE IS 4g, 4a in 21 GP with a Rel Corsi of -11.7. Better than anyone patrolling our 4th line right now. Way to evaluate Tambo!

  17. FrankenOil says:

    godot10,

    But, please correct me if I’m mistaken, the penalty-free buyouts only work for contracts over 2.5/year.

  18. hunter1909 says:

    Racki,

    With respect, exactly how many current members of the 50 player Oilers roster actually matter a jot? Ten of them, maybe? The rest are fodder.

    It must be me, but every time I read something about this “50 man roster” it makes me unexplainably nervous, as if Oilers are saturated in dynamic, brilliant players or something, and other NHL teams are licking their chops at the idea of acquiring yet another member out of the Oiler’s constellation of incredible talented hockey stars.

  19. DBO says:

    I’m actually fine with Horc as our third line centre. Give him solid winders and all is well.

    Hall – NUGE – EBERLE
    PAAJARVI – GAGNER – YAKUPOV
    CLOWE – HORCOFF – HEMSKY
    SMYTH – LANDER – HARSKY

    that has size, experience and more balance. Move Jones, Belanger, Whitney. Get picks. Use extra picks to make deals at draft or even for Clowe ‘s rights to negotiate early. It gives you 3 lines that can score and a 4 th that can actually play. 2 tough pvp lives (Nuge n Horc) . Now add a top 4 dman, sign Smid and Fistric and do not rush Klefbom.

  20. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Side note on mgt.

    Morey Gare and Co. have been in charge of pro scouting going back to 2001.

    http://oilersnation.com/2012/6/5/the-edmonton-oilers-professional-scouting-staff

    I’m not interested in taking heat off of KL and ST, but if/when the house clean comes… here’s hoping it runs through the org.

    I keep seeing that scene from Moneyball go through my head, where Beane is sitting around a table of ancient legacy men talking “saw him good” and relying on their fuzzy memories.

    That’s got to be how we ended up with Barker, Eager, Petrell and, of course, Dave Clark.

  21. FrankenOil says:

    I’m just not convinced SMyth is worth keeping over MPS or Harti at this stage or even next year. I would say that 6 of the 8 winger spots next season are spoken for:

    1)Hall
    2)Ebs
    3)Hemsky
    4)Yak
    5)MPS
    6)Harti
    7)?
    8)?
    9)Press Box Winger (IF MacTambLowe in charge, probably a knuckledragger)

    Who should fill those next year?

    The candidates (in no particular order):
    1)Jones
    2)Eager
    3)Brown
    4)Smyth
    5)Petrell
    6)None of the above

  22. FrankenOil says:

    Also, on another baffling decision, why did the Oilers decide to cheap out on the coaching staff and not hire a 3rd assistant to replace Krueger when he was elevated to HC? I’d love if they opened their wallets and brought someone in with NHL head coaching experience for the rest of the year to act as a mentor/lieuteneant to Krueger. With his Hockey Canada connection to Lowe/Tambo, would Ruff consider coming here to help out? Give him a title of VP of Coaching Development or some jazz. Right now, Management is setting Krueger up to fail just like they are with the roster.

  23. TheOtherJohn says:

    No one who has ever negoatiated a commercial contract waits for the last possible moment, ie the week of the trade dedaline. It might, and I do mean MIGHT, work if you were a very clever manager. Based on our record over the last ten years how’d you think thats gonna work out?.

    We do have two penalty-free buyouts. They are used for mistakes. Not paying Hordichuk $850K may have left them sufficient money to sign Smid, but they did, so they don’t. Maybe a better use of my season ticket money is not to make msitakes. Or to repetitively make the same mistakes over and over and over again.

    THe core of this team moving forward should be Hall, Yak, JSchultz, RNH, Eberle, Petry, Smid, Gags, Dubbie & MPS. We will probably add Seth Jones to that mix this summer. You can trade some of that core if it makes your team stronger. I even encourage them to do so, if it adds some size, ability to play and jam to their top 6.

    Doing a salary negotiation the week of the trade dedaline that results in you trading a 2nd pairing D for a bucket of pucks is beyond stupid. So its likely to be on the agenda.Maybe we can get Ryan O’Marra and Robert Nilsson for him

  24. bookje says:

    FrankenOil:
    Also, on another baffling decision, why did the Oilers decide to cheap out on the coaching staff and not hire a 3rd assistant to replace Krueger when he was elevated to HC? I’d love if they opened their wallets and brought someone in with NHL head coaching experience for the rest of the year to act as a mentor/lieuteneant to Krueger. With his Hockey Canada connection to Lowe/Tambo, would Ruff consider coming here to help out? Give him a title of VP of Coaching Development or some jazz. Right now, Management is setting Krueger up to fail just like they are with the roster.

    I can’t imagine this being a ‘cheap out’. The Oilers have greatly expanded the size of their coaching and support team since Katz has taken over. I suspect that it was Krueger’s call and he didn’t want another coach in the mix. Hiring Ruff would be like stabbing Krueger in the back by hiring a ‘mentor’ for him.

  25. Racki says:

    hunter1909:
    Racki,

    With respect, exactly how many current members of the 50 player Oilers roster actually matter a jot? Ten of them, maybe? The rest are fodder.

    It must be me, but every time I read something about this “50 man roster” it makes me unexplainably nervous, as if Oilers are saturated in dynamic, brilliant players or something, and other NHL teams are licking their chops at the idea of acquiring yet another member out of the Oiler’s constellation of incredible talented hockey stars.

    People don’t quote that because we’re amazed by the wonderful players we’ve amassed, but because you can’t just cut players in the NHL. Being at that amount is a hindrance, and I’m only pointing it out because that means the Oilers have to find some ways to lower that number a bit. The NHL is not like the NFL where you can just cut people. I’m not making excuses for the GMs and saying we need to hang on to all 49 bodies, just pointing out that the team can’t go picking up everyone they please without also doing some work to cut some more dead weight,

  26. FrankenOil says:

    bookje,

    Fair point. “Cheaping out” was maybe a poor choice but I think a strong a manager would’ve “encouraged” Krueger to add someone else to help him out considering this is his first NHL coaching gig. It just baffles me that Mgmt allowed a rookie HC to go into a season with one assistant who is 8 years into his coaching career (Bucky) and someone who is in his 3rd (second with the OIlers) in Smith. MacT is apparently more in a scouting, talent evaluation role (as I read in a recent article by Matty I beleive) so who does Krueger lean on for advice? Hitchcock talks about the importance of mentoring in the coaching profession and being able to lean on certain people for advice. Sather brought Muckler in 1981 to help him out. If bringing in Ruff ruffled (pun intended) some feathers, so be it. Competition should be encouraged and so should improving the organization at any cost in the quest to win. Pittsburgh brought in Bowman to be an advisor for the Pens while they had Badger Bob as their HC.

  27. commonfan14 says:

    Regarding the post title, my wife is a psychologist and one day casually mentioned that she’d done the Wonderlic test with one of her clients. This stunned me for a second since, as I’d only ever heard of the thing in reference to QBs at the NFL combine, I had always assumed it was some test the NFL had concocted themselves.

    Turns out it’s actually a fairly common quick and dirty IQ test that a lot of employers use, which was kind of disappointing since it sounded for a second there like my wife was administering something that focused on remembering patterns and calling audibles.

    The good part though was when I Googled Donovan McNabb’s Wonderlic score and got an “Oh my – yikes” from my wife when I showed it to her.

  28. Jordan says:

    So, at what point does the conversation about this team change?

    The question on this team has been “Are the young stars ready to supernova?” The answer to date is clearly no.

    However, at the beginning of the season, we were seeing the team do a lot more. How much of that is because most of our guys were in game shape and other teams’ weren’t?

    It’s pretty clear at this point they don’t have the same jetpacks on that they started the season with.

    I think they’re out of juice. I think this team’s issue isn’t that they aren’t good enough, it’s that they don’t have the stamina to play at their peak performance over this condensed schedule. Injuries play a factor, as do other intangibles, but I think the real downside of having so many excellent players who are still so young is that they don’t have the same kind of endurance as older veterans. Not to say they aren’t tough, just that they don’t have the physical maturity to be at their peak performance as often as they are asked to play this year, and especially as much as they are being asked to play this year.

    After all, TOI has shot up this year, and performance has fallen off.

    More games + more gametime = less energy/shift + less time to rest & recuperate.

    It seems pretty straight forwards to me.

  29. regwald says:

    Racki: People don’t quote that because we’re amazed by the wonderful players we’ve amassed, but because you can’t just cut players in the NHL. Being at that amount is a hindrance, and I’m only pointing it out because that means the Oilers have to find some ways to lower that number a bit. The NHL is not like the NFL where you can just cut people. I’m not making excuses for the GMs and saying we need to hang on to all 49 bodies, just pointing out that the team can’t go picking up everyone they please without also doing some work to cut some more dead weight,

    Further to that, someone pointed out on one of the previous threads that OKC is up against the AHL vets rule as well. Seems to me that lack of hard decisions on players has rippled across the organization. So, sending vet players to OKC who clear waivers is a challenge as they cause a problem.

    I believe this is a symptom or characteristic of the mgmt team and their inability to make decisions.

    Just my two cents worth.

  30. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Speaking of vets, 50 man roster, OKC, etc. has 16 suited up for OKC yet this year?

  31. icecastles says:

    hunter1909:
    …”suck the life out of the dressing room, zero leadership skills”
    …”an absolute puke to those he deigns beneath him”
    …”“I’m the captain of the Edmonton Oilers” Horcoff to the kids every chance he gets.”

    I know you and many others don’t like Horcoff, and there are plenty of more and less valid reasons to think he’s not the guy for the job (I happen to like him, but that’s just me). But your above comments could only possibly be defended if you (a) personally know him, and (b) have spent considerable time in the dressing room.

    So like any other assertion made on here, be it statistical or otherwise, you know you’ve got to back that up with some sort of evidence. Not circumstantial “he’s paid too much and wiffs of one-timers therefore he’s a rude entitled arsehole” evidence. Specific instances of his subhuman behavior. You’re up.

  32. BlacqueJacque says:

    Jordan,

    Everybody has a shitty schedule. Everybody has injuries. The Senators lost more players and more valuable players than us. Oh, and two years ago they were in the lottery after a rebuild.

    Fire MacTambLowe.

  33. Нинтендо⁶⁴ says:

    They seem to retake the Wonderlic more often than Vince Young.

  34. speeds says:

    AFAIK, from the 2011 draft, everyone but Simpson has to be signed or EDM loses their rights*. RNH, Klefbom, and Musil are already signed, leaving Rieder, Gernat, Perhonen, Tuohimaa, and Ewanyk to be signed or be lost after June 1.

    * – actually, not 100% sure on Tuohimaa, Gernat, and Perhonen. The new CBA allows teams to keep the rights to Euro draftees for 4 years (will be interesting to see if we see a spike in Euro draftees in later rounds reflecting this change), but I’m not sure if that will be retroactive or not – if so, EDM has a bit more time to see what happens with the goalies in particular before deciding.

  35. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    speeds: AFAIK, from the 2011 draft, everyone but Simpson has to be signed or EDM loses their rights

    Why the exception on Simpson?

    speeds: actually, not 100% sure on Tuohimaa, Gernat, and Perhonen. The new CBA allows teams to keep the rights to Euro draftees for 4 years (will be interesting to see if we see a spike in Euro draftees in later rounds reflecting this change), but I’m not sure if that will be retroactive or not – if so, EDM has a bit more time to see what happens with the goalies in particular before deciding.

    Who wants to bet whatever the rules are that the Oil “pull a Feaster” (or, its original version “an Olczyk” re: Brule) and screw it up somehow?

  36. mc79hockey says:

    FWIW, I’m told by someone who’s in a position to know and who I trust that Horcoff is a pretty great guy and great captain.

    As far as MacT goes, seems to me that he was Vancouver’s head coach in waiting last year, maybe I’m wrong. The guy took some time away from hockey with cancer and what not and then came back into what probably looks like a pretty attractive situation.

    Finally, Smid. Wouldn’t surprise me if there was some sticker shock but if you look at who’s available this summer, there aren’t a lot of guys who are going to be in front of him as a UFA. Hard to see him not getting five years at $4.5MM from someone.

  37. Woodguy says:

    Rangers claim Hamrlik

    Fail.

  38. FrankenOil says:

    Woodguy,

    Miss Sather. At least he was always tinkering to find the right mix.

  39. regwald says:

    NYR claim Hamrlik, which means the Oilers didn’t put in a request. Damn.

  40. FrankenOil says:

    Tambo: Should we put in a claim for Hamrlik?
    Lowe: What do you think?
    Tambo: Give me a couple of days…..

  41. speeds says:

    It will be interesting to see how EDM approaches the deadline this year. I tend to be of the belief that, if you’re going to miss the playoffs, it makes sense to look at dealing any non-core player who is signed for less than 2 seasons, if the offer is right, if you haven’t been able to negotiate an extension and they are a pending UFA, if you have some plan to replace that player going forward, etc.

    For the Oilers, that might mean you look at trading any of:

    Dubnyk, Khabibulin

    Smid, N.Schultz, Whitney, Fistric, Potter

    Gagner, Hemsky, Jones, Eager, Belanger, Brown, Petrell

    by no means does that mean you’re going to be moving all of them, or even that all of them have trade value, but perhaps listening to offers and seeing what’s available at the least.

  42. Matt.N says:

    Woodguy:
    Rangers claim Hamrlik

    Fail.

    The tank is on.

    Sid 2.0, The shifty winger or the big D man. Who do we like at #1?

  43. boopronger says:

    What the hell is wrong with the oilers. Am i missing something here? Why the f*** didnt they claim hamrlik. uggh. Havent watched him play this season but if his play hasnt completely fallen in an elevator shaft this is another bonehead move by the oil.

  44. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    put in a waiver for Volpatti. miss. don’t put in a waiver for Sesito. Give away a 4th for Dave Clark. let Hamrlik fly by.

    one week of excellent mgt.

  45. bookje says:

    mc79hockey:
    FWIW, I’m told by someone who’s in a position to know and who I trust that Horcoff is a pretty great guy and great captain.

    As far as MacT goes, seems to me that he was Vancouver’s head coach in waiting last year, maybe I’m wrong.The guy took some time away from hockey with cancer and what not and then came back into what probably looks like a pretty attractive situation.

    Finally, Smid.Wouldn’t surprise me if there was some sticker shock but if you look at who’s available this summer, there aren’t a lot of guys who are going to be in front of him as a UFA.Hard to see him not getting five years at $4.5MM from someone.

    Agree

    Agree – not factoring in cancer in considering MacT seems intentionally naive on Hunters part.

    Sad – Have to overpay Smid to keep him here but probably true.

  46. DBO says:

    Well there you go. This management group has written off this year to “learning and growing” and will make no attempt to improve our NHL roster with inexpensive smart options. Hamrlik is no game changer, but he increases our depth and adds a real NHLer to the roster (Potter and Peckham are AHLers, just the truth).

    You won’t see it on Oil Change, but they have told Ralph to let the kids play and learn the hard way, so this is an education year. Next year they will try for “playoffs” and the year after, once the next wave of youth is NHL ready, we will truly compete. Which is a total bag of bullshit. Sorry, but injuries, regression, not panning out, etc. means no way all of these kids can carry the load in 2 or 3 years because some will just not work out, some will be hurt and some will demand a trade because nothing is happening to try and win today. These guys are competitors, and at a certain point you need to change it up.

    Case in point Montreal. Changed the whole management team and coaching staff (Ie. new culture). Their GM hardballs Subban (instead of just opening the vault ie. Tamblowe), and then they identify their needs. Tell me if you have heard this before:

    1. need a solid two way winger with grit who is not afraid to stick up for team and brings energy on top 9 == Prust signed.
    2. Need some youthful enthusiasm, but only if they earn it. And if a kid is outplaying a vet, you play the kid = Gallagher and Galchenyuk. The only 2 under 23 yr olds on roster, not 8 under 23 yr olds.
    3. Hope for top dman to be healthy. A huge part of the difference obviously, but they backed it up with vet dmen signed.
    4. Vet underperforming who has money left = Deal Cole for Ryder to give more productive, younger, fill a need (shooter) player and get cap flexibility (and they got a damn pick back as well)
    5. Need some 4th line grit = sign Coldby Armstrong (no he hasn’t been great, but at least they tried)
    6. Need D depth = signed Bouillon, last year brought over 25 yr old Emelin from the KHL (older “rookie” dman)

    Pretty much all of these things are exactly what we needed to address. In comparison, Tamblowe got Shultz. yes great move, but still a 22 yr old rookie who is now expected to be our #1, way sooner then he should and then put the team on the shoulders of a bunch under 23 yr olds and the ankle of an injury prone dman. Knee injuries (Markov) are easier to come back from, ankles there is just too much riding on them (literally). No other move made until Brown. Funny thing is if they had signed Cheechoo and Clark for the NHL roster it would actually have filled a few of our needs, but instead they banked the season on kids and a lot of question marks. That is on management. Clear house dammit. it will not happen, but for the love of all things holy, hold someone, anyone, accountable.

  47. oilersfan says:

    i read that Pittsburgh want to bring up Tom Kostopoulos but he has to clear waivers now that he signed an NHL contract. Does this mean if the Oilers upgrade Brett Clark or Cheechoo to a NHL contract he would have to clear waivers before he comes up?

  48. TheOtherJohn says:

    Case for signing Smid is he’s young, experienced, is a pretty decent 3/4 defender and likes Edmonton. He will want to and will be paid. The astonishing thing is that if you had 2 RH offensive D almost ready to play in the top 4, he would be almost a lead pipe cinch to be resigned. Wouldn’t he?

    The problem is, of course, “the Plan” (not to be confused with the Detroit Plan (that plan worked for over a decade); the Pittsburgh Plan (worked and is still working) or the Chicago Plan (worked, retooled and is again working) whereby Stu McGregor selects a limitless cadre of superlative prospects continually pushing for “cheap” roster spots on the NHL club. The Oilers Plan makes resigning Smid for real dollars a waste of $$$ n/w/s we have several contracts at the bottom of the roster that make no sense other than that “they liked what we were building here”.

    If Klefbom exceeds expectations he may be able to replace Smid in 15/16. More likely 16/17. 3 more seasons for an identified bona fide prospect that develops very well to do what Smid does right now. Or maybe we give Nic Schultz increased responsibilty? Ok just typing that made me feel uncomfortable.

    The Oiler Plan that relies on the kids to push up onto the roster requires a whole bunch of them to outperform their draft slot and outside of the 1st round that consists of Hartikannen and NO ONE else. Not Lander, not Pitlick, not HAmilton, not Marincin……..nobody. But the D who develop slower are all going to develop quickly and fill holes. So what if the Plan is not working. Do we need to wait 3 years to find that out, too?

    Most Plans are adjusted for reality. Yesterday Stauffer was saying 75% of the “sophisticated fanbase” are supportive of the Plan and being patient. Yeah but show us, somewhere, somehow that you are adjusting your Plan on the fly. Because so far, all we see is drafting early in the lottery and sitting on your hands.

  49. FrankenOil says:

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers
    After a snowstorm kept the team in Columbus last night, the #Oilers are about to depart for Detroit to play the #RedWings on Thursday

    Makes sense how they missed out on Hamrlik. Too busy playing in the snow

  50. justDOit says:

    oilersfan:
    i read that Pittsburgh want to bring up Tom Kostopoulos but he has to clear waivers now that he signed an NHL contract. Does this mean if the Oilers upgrade Brett Clark or Cheechoo to a NHL contract he would have to clear waivers before he comes up?

    I think Kostopoulos has to clear waivers before being assigned to Wilkes Barre, Anyone?

  51. DBO says:

    justDOit,

    He got claimed by the Devils. So yes, I believe Cheechoo and Clark would need to clear to be called up, and we wouldn’t do it anyways. Why improve the team. I need a drink. Gonna have a real beer, none of this gluten free crap. I will be doubled over in pain from the gluten, but it seems fitting.

  52. Jon K says:

    mc79hockey:
    FWIW, I’m told by someone who’s in a position to know and who I trust that Horcoff is a pretty great guy and great captain.

    As far as MacT goes, seems to me that he was Vancouver’s head coach in waiting last year, maybe I’m wrong.The guy took some time away from hockey with cancer and what not and then came back into what probably looks like a pretty attractive situation.

    Finally, Smid.Wouldn’t surprise me if there was some sticker shock but if you look at who’s available this summer, there aren’t a lot of guys who are going to be in front of him as a UFA.Hard to see him not getting five years at $4.5MM from someone.

    +1 to all of the above.

    I will add however that I’ve heard there is a significant divide in the locker room between the old and new leadership. However contrary to what Stauffer was saying the other day, most of the things I’ve heard are not particularly flattering about the new leadership. Renney apparently had a lot of difficulty trying to rein in the egos last year.

    For the record, I’m still a MacT bandwagoner.

  53. hunter1909 says:

    icecastles,

    I don’t like MacT any more than Horcoff, and could pull out his criminal record to back up another one of my assertions that convicts shouldn’t be handed the keys to developing young talented sports stars, period. I’d say that MacT has inner demons and I’m not interested in following them. But, like so many internet debates, where will it lead?

    I guess I can see poor leadership without reading a stat sheet, is all. Amazing skill, I know.

  54. justDOit says:

    DBO,

    But I think he was on his way down to the AHL when claimed. Re-entry waivers is gone, from what I understand, but I’m no Sherman or Feaster on the topic.

    As for the gluten – just DON’T do it! I know way more about this than I do waivers and the CBA.

  55. wheatnoil says:

    justDOit:
    DBO,

    But I think he was on his way down to the AHL when claimed. Re-entry waivers is gone, from what I understand, but I’m no Sherman or Feaster on the topic.

    I think this is in fact the case. If you sign someone playing in the minors and you want to assign them to the minors, then they have to pass through waivers. If you’d like to play them on the NHL roster, then they don’t have to go through waivers.

    The exception to this rule are players who played in Europe after the start of the regular season. Those players have to pass through waivers prior to playing in the NHL.

  56. BlacqueJacque says:

    Jon K,

    Who’s the new leadership? Eberle? Well, I can kinda believe it in that case. Neither the effort nor the results have consistently been there. Hall? Looks golden to my eyes. One of only a few guys competing every night. Like his junior coach said, he looks like he’d take the net off its moorings with his teeth if it would mean scoring a goal. Other than Ebs, the only new locker room leader is Schultz the Elder and he’s mr level and consistent.

    I don’t really put much stock into locker room rumors, though. I see how quickly things get misconstrued and blown out of proportion at work. Between the media and legions of idiotic fans, I just can’t trust anything said about 23 guys who form a tight-knit group.

  57. speeds says:

    oilersfan,

    PIT was trying to assign him to the AHL, so he had to clear waivers to go back down.

    http://penguins.nhl.com/club/news.htm?id=658632

    I’m not certain, but don’t think Clark or Cheechoo would have to clear waivers were EDM to sign them to NHL contracts unless they were trying to re-assign them to the AHL after signing NHL deals. The waiver section that related to O’Reilly specifically says it only applies to players that play outside of North America, which doesn’t apply to Clark/Cheechoo.

  58. remlap says:

    justDOit:
    DBO,

    But I think he was on his way down to the AHL when claimed. Re-entry waivers is gone, from what I understand, but I’m no Sherman or Feaster on the topic.

    As for the gluten – just DON’T do it! I know way more about this than I do waivers and the CBA.

    I also know more about gluten than waivers and CBA crap. Crohn’s Disease in the house! Where mah people at?!

    There are plenty of decent gluten free beers out there.

  59. justDOit says:

    Not to dwell too long on ridiculous Spector stuff from yesterday, but his comments on Euros on the 3rd/4th lines got me thinking. According to the Hawks’ site ( http://blackhawks.nhl.com/club/depthchart.htm?dcid=16 ), 3 out of the bottom 6 guys are Euros – Kruger, Frolik and Stalberg.

    Stupid Blackhawks!

  60. DBO says:

    remlap,

    I have a few I like. Estrella and Mongozo are solid, just figured I’d continue to punish myself since I continue to punish myself by caring too much about this franchise, so why not in other aspects of my life.

  61. bookje says:

    Woodguy:
    Rangers claim Hamrlik

    Fail.

    Agreed – It’s worth noting that Bruce wrote a piece indicating that they should not pick up Hamerlik, but I disagree.

    As I noted earlier this past summer, the team was in a good position at the time and I respected ownership for their actions since 2008 to get to that point (building a development system, not saddling themselves with NTCs and NMCs or long contracts, tanking for quality draft picks, attracting Schultz – which involved strategy). Not many teams take the ‘long approach’ to planning and I think the slow steady pace of Steve was good for the long term success of the team. I noted that I was willing to give them well into the season for them to shift to the next phase – that is building a competitive team. Switching from tanking (the Fraser/Foster era) to being competitive is hard, because you have a lot of intentional weaknesses to address (you need these to tank) and you have a limited set of tradeable assets (assuming you don’t want to trade draft picks which would be stupid). The shift needs to involve the rise of young players acquired through the draft, the signing of free agents (who now are willing to sign because of your young talent), and the picking up of the odd ‘good deal’ via waivers or by a minor trade.

    With the exception of the first rounders, the Oilers have not had any young players develop well enough to really contribute this year. They have not picked up any minor improvements at low costs (Fisteric and Brown are fine, but not bargains). They have not signed any good free agents (I was ok with both the Eager and Belanger signing at the time, but they have disappointed overall) though I think that it remains difficult to do that in Edmonton. So, they have failed to improve the team in an acceptable trajectory from the summer to now.

    In some postings over the summer that Woodguy made regarding the state of the team, he and I agreed that the team was in a reasonable spot, but that Tambellini had not demonstrated any ability to acquire NHL level talent outside of the draft. My argument was that critiquing the Fosters and Frasers of the world when the intent was to lose is difficult. I also felt that while Tambellini was not great at acquiring NHL talent, I hoped that Lowe (whose record of trades had some big wins prior to Katz taking over) and MacT would create an effective unit in acquiring that talent.

    In any case, its now March 2013 and nothing has arrived and things have been missed (Hamerlik the latest case). The team is hamstrung with contracts including Hortichuk and Petrell. So, either the team strategy is even longer running and slower than any of us can conceive (which is possible – maybe Katz really does want to wait for his arena) or the group simply can’t take the team from this point forwards. If it is the former, I think they are taking a huge risk regarding the patience and affordability of the young guys. If it is the latter, then its probably time to promote everyone to Vicroy positions in the Katz empire and bring in someone else (who is a difficult question).

    Taking the Devil’s advocate point of view (something I do a lot of here), there is some room to recognize that young player have ups and downs and the kids could have a great stretch in the near future and we could all be happy again without any major personal changes (just a few weeks ago Woodguy noted he liked this organization at all levels). If that’s the case, a few contracts can be dumped this summer and a few FAs can be signed greatly improving the team. Also, the return of Horcoff alone would probably improve things a bit (they would probably have at least one more win in the past three weeks with him – a situation which would have them a point out of the playoff spot).

    In any case I would still rather have the Oilers as they currently are than about half of the teams in the NHL. I only hope that Tambellini and co don’t start mortgaging the future in a last minute ditch to be competitive under pressure from Katz. I think the time between now and the trade deadline will be interesting. I think things are pretty unpredictable at this point. The team could string together a few wins and reverse this doom and gloom scenario that the fans are in or it could spiral downwards quickly (Smid playing left wing is the last sign of doom).

  62. bookje says:

    justDOit:
    Not to dwell too long on ridiculous Spector stuff from yesterday, but his comments on Euros on the 3rd/4th lines got me thinking. According to the Hawks’ site ( http://blackhawks.nhl.com/club/depthchart.htm?dcid=16 ), 3 out of the bottom 6 guys are Euros – Kruger, Frolik and Stalberg.

    Stupid Blackhawks!

    I actually complained to the radio station that Spector was both lowering the bar too far in terms of appealing to blunt ignorance (i.e. he was dumber than the general public will accept) and that he was xenophobic which reflects poorly on the radio station. No response yet.

  63. justDOit says:

    bookje,

    Excellent. If you phoned that complaint in, they’re probably still looking through the Z section of the dictionary…

  64. Racki says:

    mc79hockey:
    FWIW, I’m told by someone who’s in a position to know and who I trust that Horcoff is a pretty great guy and great captain.

    This is impossible. A friend of a friend that worked with this guy who went to school with someone named Greg who had a pet Chinchilla Horcoff used to babysit… well, he said that Horcoff forgot to read him his bedtime stories one night, and that …. that just isn’t what good leaders do.

    People see Horcoff hit a goalie in the crest more times than they’d like and automatically assume that the guy is a raging a-hole that is dragging the team down. It’s pretty clear that he has a high work ethic. He’s also quite vocal with the team as well, and is often shown talking to many of the younger players offering advice (this is where the anti-Horcoff crowd would mention that his advice sucks). Everything points to him being a good leader, and that his peers think so as well.

    I will also add that I’m Castlegar born, and all my family is there. My family that is there is quite close with the Horcoffs and they always speak highly of Shawn and his family. But anyways, that’s neither hear or there, I suppose. My point I guess is that on ice, sure, I can see the critiques that he isn’t the most gifted offensively. Questioning his off-ice and leadership skills though seem like reaching from fans that will use anything they can to prove their ridiculous arguments.

    Of course my long winded opening tale is not meant to ridicule your comment, but to ridicule those that seem to come up with the silliest reasons to think Horcoff is a bad captain/leader. Some (like further above don’t even provide any reason) .

  65. VanOil says:

    I know that it to acquire the type of players Oilers fans dream about by trade we would have to give up assets of value. But I don’t believe that these sorts of trades are likely or if/when they do happen are likely to make the Oilers a better team. ie good for good = so what see Schultz-Gilbert

    Oilers have few players that are now or have the potential to become NHL players that a team with a winning record would ice. (This theory is some what thwarted by Vancouver actually starting Cam Barker this week, mind you they had an Oilers like record this week as well). These are the players I feel would or could be employed on a winning NHL roster, though maybe not in a prominent role as they have with the Oilers;

    Hall-Eberle-RNH (When in their Mid 20s have a real shot at leading Team Canada, now OK in NHL)
    Yak-Gagner-Hemsky (Not great as a line but all above average NHLers and one potential God)
    Horcoff-Paarjavi-Hartikainen (Most teams would find room for 2 out of 3 of these guy’s)

    As for the rest of the forwards, I don’t believe would be better than replacement value for any of the top teams say CHI,Van,Det 4th lines. Good teams sometimes add grit or specialists in order to make cup runs. Oilers need to add NHL caliber players to make a run at a winning season, we are years away from Cup runs.

    On defense it is pretty obvious we have 4 defenders that can play and 4 who cannot.

    This leads me to conclude we cannot afford to trade away any NHL talent and we should sign what we do have. ie. Smid Getting rid of Smid just to have to replace Smid makes no sense to me. Iceing blow up dolls instead of our bottom 4 defenders does.

    The rest should be traded and cut on mass. I am not looking for any return here. Just simply get rid of them. 3 for 1 trades galore with the return 1 being a bucket of pucks. When you are doing a rebuild you some times need to strip it down to the foundations. Throw out the rot it is not worth building on top of.

    Even at the end of a long road trip in a season with a compressed schedule I feel Oilers would have had a better shot winning the last 2 game only dressing/playing 3 forward lines and 2 defense pairings. My hope as an Oiler fan right now is not miraculous acquisitions, I just simply do not want to watch bad hockey players play poor hockey any more. Young hockey player making mistakes I can handle, bad hockey players draining me of hope not so much. For example when #20 steps on the ice I not only expect Oilers not to score until he leaves I am also positive I will not see any of the following; a nice pass, a great shot, an energetic O-zone cycle or a big hit. What the hell is point, he is not going to help win a game and is the antithesis of entertaining to watch. His only value on the team seems to be to tell Yak jokes.

    With 50 employees there needs to be more than 14 worthy of NHL employment. Time for mass layoffs of deadwood and/or deadwood managers. I am way to grumpy today to dream of returns today I just want the rot gone.

  66. justDOit says:

    justDOit,

    It looks as though I’ve just become a mediaphobe. Rats.

  67. godot10 says:

    There seems to be this meme percolating that the young players are underperforming.

    Which young player is underperforming?

    Hall is at a point per game.
    Gagner is a point per game.
    Paajarvi has worked his way up from OKC to the 2nd line and has 4 goals.
    Nugent-Hopkins is taking on the top centre of other teams at 19.
    Eberle is 4 points in 22 games of of his per game pace of last year facing much tougher opposition. He has more points than Zac Parise, who gets to play with Mikku Koivu. The Sedins are only a 1 PPG. There are only 20-something players in the NHL over 1PPG.

  68. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    hunter1909:
    Once upon a time I read a Jack London story about a gold mining town in the gold rush days where everyone was forced to live on bear meat. It kept them alive, but was so horrible the whole place was on the verge of going insane.

    This is a parallel to Oiler fans. Oiler fans live on bear meat, and management expects people to like it.

    If you are interested in a total mindfuck of mining town bleakness facing down external threats (in this case ruthless mercenaries, not bear meat), check out

    McCabe & Mrs. Miller

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1iYxrsd59-E

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4E0RaHH6E_s

    http://rogerebert.suntimes.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/19991114/REVIEWS08/911140301/1023

    It is not often given to a director to make a perfect film. Some spend their lives trying, but always fall short. Robert Altman has made a dozen films that can be called great in one way or another, but one of them is perfect, and that one is “McCabe & Mrs. Miller” (1971). This is one of the saddest films I have ever seen, filled with a yearning for love and home that will not ever come — not for McCabe, not with Mrs. Miller, not in the town of Presbyterian Church, which cowers under a gray sky always heavy with rain or snow. The film is a poem–an elegy for the dead.

    That’s a dark vision my friends.

  69. denny33 says:

    Lucinius,

    Could not agree more….If we move Smid – I will be very deflated. Unless the return is Very Large.

    There is definitely a dip – but I think you are onto something about Smid having to put out a lot of other peoples fires in our own end…

  70. justDOit says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Maybe something a little lighter for all the bruised egos around here today? How about:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QDvdSGkN0aU

  71. DBO says:

    godot10,

    I’m not trying to say they are under performing so much as saying that it is not fair, right or even realistic to expect all of them to carry this team. Arguably 6 of of your top 7 forwards and your top dman are under 23. That is not a recipe for success in any sport.

  72. VanOil says:

    godot10:
    There seems to be this meme percolating that the young players are underperforming.

    Which young player is underperforming?

    Hall is at a point per game.
    Gagner is a point per game.
    Paajarvi has worked his way up from OKC to the 2nd line and has 4 goals.
    Nugent-Hopkins is taking on the top centre of other teams at 19.
    Eberle is 4 points in 22 games of of his per game pace of last year facing much tougher opposition.He has more points than Zac Parise, who gets to play with Mikku Koivu.The Sedins are only a 1 PPG.There are only 20-something players in the NHL over 1PPG.

    Thank you this helps my mood.

  73. denny33 says:

    FrankenOil,

    At this point, I don’t even know what Eager does…I am not sure he even hit one blue jacket last night….

    Excellent points on Oiler management….on the bright side Belanger did have a great set up for Foligno last night. Smyth, Horcoff, Eager, and Belanger that is a lot of managment decisions that look very interesting outside of Edmonton.

  74. sliderule says:

    Stauffer was suggesting the divide between the young and old is getting worse.

    He then went on to say Hawks had all young leaders when they won the cup and this was a big factor.

    He finished off by intimating that they had to get rid of all the old guard.

    He was talking about players but it should be like Javkets get tid of mgmt starting at very top.

  75. bookje says:

    Vollman question – Does quality of competition mean anything between teams on Vollman graphs?

    If so, this is fun to look at.

    http://somekindofninja.com/nhl/usage.php?f1=2012_s&f2=5v5&f3=&f5=&f4=D&f7=10-&update-filters=Update+Results

  76. FrankenOil says:

    sliderule,

    That’s all well and good for Stauffer to say, but the “old guard” are all signed past this year. Are we prepared to make 2 compliance buyouts and also a couple of regular buy-outs and have more dead cap space? Buying out players is the definition of poor management. Usually, buyouts are the luxury only a new manager can afford so as to try and have as clean a slate as possible to start. So if Tambo is gonzo, then go for it. However, if he’s still here, then we have a clear picture that Batman and his cronies have no clue.

  77. bookje says:

    This one is even more fun.

    http://somekindofninja.com/nhl/usage.php?f1=2012_s&f2=5v5&f3=&f5=&f4=C&f7=10-&update-filters=Update+Results

    Petrell is the leagues most abused forward and the result in ugly. Fraser does almost as poorly despite having low QofC and great zonestarts.

  78. bookje says:

    and Taylor Hall is a monster swimming upstream Godzillalike. Mike Brown is terrible. MPS is stellar.

    http://somekindofninja.com/nhl/usage.php?f1=2012_s&f2=5v5&f3=&f5=&f4=LW&f7=10-&update-filters=Update+Results

    Note – I am sure these probably don’t work with multiple teams on the same graph, but it is fun to look at.

  79. dessert1111 says:

    I am really starting to hate this team. Something major needs to change between now and the start of next season, and I mean major. As far as basic philosophy and management and a huge cast of players, most of which aren’t performing terribly, but simply not good enough. Half of this team is filled with 13th and 14th forwards and 6/7 D, and the all the roster moves seem to be about adding yet more 13th and 14th forwards and 6/7 D. It’s great that they haven’t been stockpiling draft picks this year. But the moves that have been made are in a way much worse because it leads me to believe that the team is incapable of recognizing what it takes to become a better team. At least if they kept stockpiling picks I could think that they were just waiting to be competitive, even if I didn’t agree. Instead the problem seems to be that the people who run the team, and many of the players on it, just don’t have what it takes to win, and I’m sick of watching a team I support lose and lose and lose.

  80. SkinnerBox says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Pffft…Neither of those 2 hacks deserve half as much credit as they get in Psych txts.

    Back on topic, mc79 has a great article up about brown and how absolutely pitiful the signing is. Eager, Smyth, and Brown is probably the worst 4th line in the entire league. At least they sure looked that way last night.

  81. TheOtherJohn says:

    Godot

    From Bookje post above you now are one of a very few serious posters that still bellieve everything is pointed in the right direction. Agree with most of what Bookje said above with a significant difference: vehemently disagree with notion that we tanked for the last 3 years, deliberately or otherwise. Do not believe it is factually accurate. Maybe in RNH draft year but nowhere else. We just have really bad management.

    Hall is 3 years out from his draft year. Eberle is in his 4th year out from his draft year. Both Crosby and Toews in their 4th year won the Stanley Cup. You will also recall Crosby went to SCF in his 3rd year and lost. Kane was in his 3rd year when they won. So following those models we would be challenging for a SC this year and winning one next year.

    How is that model looking this afternoon as we are 24th and have road games upcoming agst Det, Chi and Nash?

    Management should not panic and make a stupid move (God knows thats my fear) but its time to assemble an NHL calibre roster. Not the flotsam we have littering our roster

  82. denny33 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Outstanding post….and corresponds to the story I heard from the Bluejackets radio guy – the scouting staff that was put together by Doug Maclean is still largely in place in Columbus. Even Howson kept them on….think about that. Take a look at what that staff did for Columbus and how they are still employed.

    How many times will we see the Bluejackets and Oilers together at the TSN studio for the lottery ball ceremony?

    Are we the New York Islanders – perpetually in the hunt for the magic ball?

  83. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Tsn has 6′s face blasted on their NHL homepage right now… sign of things to come?

    http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/

  84. Matt.N says:

    The thing that really scares me is that the management group doesn’t understand what needs to be fixed. The entire team seems to be based around the young core group in their mind. There seems to be no understanding of the value of having support players that are good at hockey. The next logical step for this line of thinking is to make changes with your core group. Not do what seems to be obvious and improve the supporting cast. This team isn’t really that far away. 2 or 3 veteran forwards who are good at hockey. I am talking about the Rich Peverly’s of the world. Not superstars. 2 or 3 defensemen that are average. One just went by them on waivers. This is all that would be needed to be a playoff team. Instead, in a year or two they will move Eberle for an aging star.

  85. godot10 says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    Godot

    From Bookje post above you now are one of a very few serious posters that still bellieve everything is pointed in the right direction.

    I don’t know if I would describe myself as believing everything is pointed in the right direction.

    I’m just older and have seen it all before, and I tend to be contrarian. The Oilogosphere is overwhelming suicidal and depressed, so I end up sounding positive. When the Oilogosophere becomes euphoric and overjoyed, I’m pretty sure I will become “Debbie Downer”.

    I’m as pissed as anyone that the Oilers went into the season entirely dependent on Ryan Whitney’s ankle.

    The pro scouts are still all Lowe’s buddies. Tambellini doesn’t seem to have the power to clean house there. He improved the drafting with Stu. He hired really competent guys in OKC. And he did have the guts to turf a friend in Renney.

    Horcoff was a pretty important piece of the team this year. It was really bad luck that he got hurt.
    Belanger is an okay #4.

    They really need to fix the remaining things that are wrong this summer, and fix the bottom of the roster for next year.

    The CYA-piss-away-a-draft-pic Brown move doesn’t inspire confidence though.

  86. RMGS says:

    That ship likely sailed before the start of the season (or even when this management team was assembled), but Parkatti may have it right when he says that the Oilers lost their season by failing to adequately replace Horcoff when he went down long-term. The evidence continues to mount that management is orthodox about its “rebuild timeline” and will, like some free market zealot, let laissez faire rule the day. The other option (not mutually exclusive) is that management is simply very poor.

    I’ll say it again, without some miraculous change in luck (like a dramatic spike in PDO) and/or shrewd and aggressive moves by management to fill the perpetual gaping roster holes, this team as it stands will not make the playoffs this year.

  87. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    bookje:
    Vollman question – Does quality of competition mean anything between teams on Vollman graphs?

    If so, this is fun to look at.

    http://somekindofninja.com/nhl/usage.php?f1=2012_s&f2=5v5&f3=&f5=&f4=D&f7=10-&update-filters=Update+Results

    I’m not the one to typically answer such questions… but because I got confused about QC a little while ago and someone sorted me out, I think I can help here.

    Vollman doesn’t really help with QC, because QC doesn’t matter in terms of the numbers represented. What matters is where you stand within the team… or, a + or – 2 in and of itself is meaningless. What matters is where you stand compared to your teammates (and not other teams).

    So… for QC you need an ordinal chart listing the scores. Essentially QC — over a large sample size — shows where the coach pegs each player’s ability.

    does that make any sense?

  88. asiaoil says:

    These mgmt clowns have one last chance to prove they have any clue. I can probably deal with one last tank this year as it’s short and the draft is deep – but this debacle better be intentional and the next few weeks better be full of smart moves targeting next season as a “must win”. At the trade deadline we need to be both buyers and sellers. We need to clear out as much of the crap bottom end forwards and dmen as possible, and add real NHLers. Given this is the NHL we are talking about I bet Eager finds a home on waivers or a trade, same with Bulin, Belanger Whitney and Jones. Petrell, Peckham, Potter you just clear out if possible. Gagner or Hemsky can be trade bait if we can get a bigger better 2 way C in return – Dubinsky works for me but there are others. The other big missing piece is a big minute D like JBo who would move everyone down the totem pole and make the defense as a whole much better. I can deal with picking up one more piece in a deep draft but they have to start making moves now to be better in 13-14 and not wait for July 1 if they have any hope of doing this right.

  89. RMGS says:

    DBO: Case in point Montreal.

    What with my agreeing with this and with my touting Montreal as a possible “how things could have been” parallel universe option for the Oilers, I think I may be a closet Habs fan.

    Being an Oilers supporter can plunge a man to great depths.

  90. spoiler says:

    Smid is having an amazing year carrying the entire defensive corps on his back. He make so many good, smart plays a game, he’s a joy to watch.

    I cannot get my head around the logic of picking up Hamrlik (or any other fading or borderline Dman) only to trade Smid. That makes no sense whatsoever.

  91. jonrmcleod says:

    gcw_rocks,

    I can see both perspectives. People often do learn and change after making a huge error in judgment. Though I believe mistakes of this magnitude should be punished more severely than they usually are. And sometimes unexpected blessings can follow a tragedy (e.g., I’m assuming you probably wouldn’t be alive today if not for this tragedy).

  92. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    spoiler: I cannot get my head around the logic of picking up Hamrlik (or any other fading or borderline Dman) only to trade Smid. That makes no sense whatsoever.

    why are the two related? Is someone saying get Hamrlik AND trade Smid?

    I haven’t heard it.

  93. raventalon40 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: why are the two related? Is someone saying get Hamrlik AND trade Smid?

    I haven’t heard it.

    If it means pick up Hamrlik to trade Potter or Peckham (50 roster spots), I don’t see the benefit either. It’s basically a parallel move imo.

  94. hunter1909 says:

    PS: Add former NHL laughingstock, but since everyone now understands it lies with the Oiler’s inept management now everyone feels sorry for the fans, which is actually even worse.

  95. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    raventalon40: If it means pick up Hamrlik to trade Potter or Peckham (50 roster spots), I don’t see the benefit either. It’s basically a parallel move imo.

    I think Hamrlik is an upgrade on 44, 6, 45 and 24. I’d waive 44, trade 6… and… flip a coin on 24 and 45.

  96. hunter1909 says:

    Truth Movement,

    Since subscribing to the Oiler’s great leap into the parallel universe of quantum physics around the turn of the millennium; mere syntax, rational thoughts, and other former barriers to nirvana no longer apply.

  97. prairieschooner says:

    Where are all our contracts?
    How many ECHL players have Oiler contracts
    Surely those are easy decisions

  98. cabbiesmacker says:

    Racki: It has the same thing to do with his abilities to coach / manage a hockey team or assess player talent as the awful incident he was involved in does…. nothing.

    There ya go.

  99. Racki says:

    Great story by the way, Woodguy… thanks for posting that. Surprisingly I’d never read that before. Man what great parents those two are.

  100. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy,

    I really think LT needs to take a harder stance with trolls. I don’t want MacT around for other reasons (mostly due to the insipid, incestuous olboysclub culture, and Mac’s lingering stench of failure), but someone here started digging up shit from 25 years ago and the discussion got totally derailed by that. Don’t like Mac? Fine, welcome to the club. But – and you know who you are – don’t start stupid arguments that have nothing to do with anything going on today.

    I’ve run some pretty big online forums in the late 90s and early-mid 2000s and the only answer to this shit before it gets out of hand – and it will, because this blog is growing and the feebleminded simpletons have started to discover it – is to terminate trolls with extreme prejudice. First a warning and explanation of how things work, then a swift and permanent kick in the ass.

  101. Racki says:

    I don’t come here as frequently as I’d like, but Hunter1909 is the resident troll that spews argumentative nonsense… noted.

    p.s., sincere slowclap for Blackquejacque

  102. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    This thread needs some Idris Muhammad:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MktPGmRC8vU

    There. Now that you’re all smoothed over, here’s some Zappa to wake you up in a completely different universe:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cu_kJ4jEJ9A

    Now… hockey.

    what the fuck with these marginal decisions being so colossally fucked?

  103. Lowetide says:

    I’ve deleted some horrible and some good comments, because I don’t have time to do this. For the love of God, can we move on in subject matter? Files this under debts paid to society, please.

    THanks!

  104. cabbiesmacker says:

    hunter1909:

    This is a parallel to Oiler fans. Oiler fans live on bear meat, and management expects people to like it.

    Bear meat is actually quite delicious but you need to stick with the omnivorous varieties.

    It’s quite possible that Jack London’s town was located in an area where only carnovorous types were denizens. I’d imagine chowing down on predminantly fish eating coastal browns would be akin to having oral sex with a hirsute halibut.

  105. justDOit says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Ah – early 70′s FZ. My favorite period of his, with exception to the late 80′s ‘Best Band…’ tour. Magic.

    I own about 20 of his albums, but The Grand Wazoo isn’t one of them, unfortunately. I’ll have to correct this oversite, pdq!

  106. cabbiesmacker says:

    ooooohhh. Pointing out Hunter’s small “recovered vs recovering” alcoholic usage was a sin.

    Somebody spank me.

  107. Racki says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:

    There. Now that you’re all smoothed over, here’s some Zappa to wake you up in a completely different universe:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cu_kJ4jEJ9A

    I’d imagine if I ever made it as a pro musician, all my songs would be filled with onomatopoeia beats “rum pum pum pummmm”. Probably would exclude any photoshoots with me on the toilet, but to each his own.

    P.S. the great LT has spoken.. and it’s “stfu!”. Agreed (although I think a few people late to the party missed this message).

    Anyways, on topic, this team needs some fire in the bottom six. Not Mike Brown fire, but the kind guys like Glencross would bring.. energy with goalscoring ability. When is another Ryan Jones going to plop on waivers for us?

    Stevesmith: I don’t know if you’re serious, but there is a big difference between going off topic and just arguing for the sake of arguing and other general internet asshattery meant to ruffle peoples’ feathers. Of course not being that regular of a visitor here, i have no idea if it’s a crazy mess carried on from elsewhere, but in this post it appears harmless.

  108. OilClog says:

    What does a man’s mistake nearly 20 years ago have to do with what’s going on presently on the ice..

    Our management is inept, very true.

    We have a rookie head coach with well below level assistant coaching.

    There is no co-ordination between the defense and forwards, zero. Every single team stands us up at the blue line.. every single time..

    It’s clear all the cancer hasn’t been removed from the room, there is no fun being had by this team, these guys do not want to play for each other. A few of them are, and a few of them are buying in to Kruger.. but overall it’s the same shit. This isn’t anything to do with MacT, this shit started before he was shown the door and has only gotten thicker since.

    This team needs to either give the C to Hall and out with the old now, or bring in someone that is going to dominate the room and bench within the players themselves. Horcoff isn’t a captain, Smyth is stretched beyond stretched, Whitney seems to be a “me first” type.

    It’s become so bad Dubnyk looks defeated, great, sweet development.

  109. Lois Lowe says:

    Wow this thread is a trainwreck.

  110. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    justDOit:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Ah – early 70′s FZ. My favorite period of his, with exception to the late 80′s ‘Best Band…’ tour. Magic.

    I own about 20 of his albums, but The Grand Wazoo isn’t one of them, unfortunately. I’ll have to correct this oversite, pdq!

    just picked up Grand Wazoo on vinyl last weekend! I got tired of crappy mp3 versions. that run of albums (Hot Rats, Waka-Jawaka, Chunga’s Revenge and Grand Wazoo) are my favorites. great stuff.

    I think I might start calling ST “Susie Creamcheese”

  111. bookje says:

    Lowetide:
    I’ve deleted some horrible and some good comments, because I don’t have time to do this. For the love of God, can we move on in subject matter? Files this under debts paid to society, please.

    THanks!

    I’m sorry LT, I won’t say anything bad about Tambellini again. I don’t know what got into me, but from here on in its total support – no worries. Any day now I expect the Oilers to add a little balance to the roster! GO TEAM!

  112. justDOit says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: just picked up Grand Wazoo on vinyl last weekend! I got tired of crappy mp3 versions. that run of albums (Hot Rats, Waka-Jawaka, Chunga’s Revenge and Grand Wazoo) are my favorites. great stuff.

    I think I might start calling ST “Susie Creamcheese”

    And here’s the text that sprung to mind when you said that (insert ST in place of SC):

    Male voice: Suzy Creamcheese?

    Female voice: Yes?

    Male voice: This is the voice of your conscience baby … uh, I just want to check one thing out with you … you don’t mind, do ya?

    Female voice: What?

    Male voice: Suzy Creamcheese, honey, what’s got into ya?

  113. BlacqueJacque says:

    Lowetide,

    Registered users only. Posting guidelines included with every blog post. Bans handed out liberally. I really don’t know what your experience with the internet has been, but this blog is reaching a tipping point where the sense of community is disappearing because the number of active users has exceeded the human community limit (about 75-150 peple). After this point, people stop seeing each other as complete individuals because it becomes too difficult to track relationships accurately. So we start blending into the background except for certain names that stand out – good or bad (usually the bad ones because it is human nature to track threats more than friends).

    More than that, I personally believe that this forum community is truly exceptional – the number of high quality posters (and I don’t include myself among them) is remarkable. And eventually they will be drowned out and then driven away by the noise. Guys like Bruce, Woodguy, bookie, etc.

    OK I’m done with my spiel. Have a good day.

  114. "Steve Smith" says:

    Private to LT: Er, you knew I was just kidding about the Jung/Freud thing, right?

    Apologies for my contributions to this thread, in any event.

  115. "Steve Smith" says:

    Racki: Stevesmith: I don’t know if you’re serious, but there is a big difference between going off topic and just arguing for the sake of arguing and other general internet asshattery meant to ruffle peoples’ feathers. Of course not being that regular of a visitor here, i have no idea if it’s a crazy mess carried on from elsewhere, but in this post it appears harmless.

    Yeah, I was kidding. I don’t think I conveyed that well. I am, as ever, fully supportive of Lowetide’s moderation.

  116. denny33 says:

    godot10,

    I can’t reconcile us being brutally buried at 30th in 5 on 5 goals for and us having support for our top 6. Taylor Hall has been a model of consistency and effort. Not sure how many goals Sam has 5 on 5 though..

    As far as RNH – Jonathan Huberdeau is 19 and playing with AHL guys. Florida has 5 forwards out – 4 starting defenceman out.

    Jonathan Huberdau has 11 goals and 5 assists playing with minor league guys. Just listened to their own radio guys describe the state of the team….along with Dale Tallon.

    Not disputing anything you are saying….but just trying to reconcile all of our top talent and our brutal goals for – 5 on 5.

  117. Bar_Qu says:

    I think PRV is turning a corner. I believe he is watching the veteran guys like Smyth and seeing what he can do to emulate that type of play. And since he is healthy he is getting more ice time than what Harski had, which looks to be the perfect tonic to his confidence issues. I really believe he will be the 2/3 winger this team needs in its arsenal of 10′s and 9′s (to borrow LT’s phrasing).

    I sure hope we see a few more games like that from him, especially down the soon-to-be-meaningless stretch.

  118. Woodguy says:

    bookje: I’m sorry LT, I won’t say anything bad about Tambellini again.I don’t know what got into me, but from here on in its total support – no worries.Any day now I expect the Oilers to add a little balance to the roster!GO TEAM!

    I blame Bookie.

    And Laforge.

  119. godot10 says:

    OilClog:

    There is no co-ordination between the defense and forwards, zero. Every single team stands us up at the blue line.. every single time..

    I don’t want the team that I am a fan of to kill the game like Phoenix and most other teams now do.

    Krueger is trying to play an agressive attacking system, and the bottom of the roster isn’t capable of playing it.

    Krueger sold Justin Schultz on the notion that the Oilers were going to play hockey.

    Hall, Nugent-Hopkins, and Eberle were outplaying the best lines in the league playing Krueger’s system. There really isn’t anything wrong with it.

    Do you want to win a Stanley Cup or do you just want to be respectable and do just whatever everybody else is doing, to CYA?

    Krueger is not coaching for mediocrity. If it exposes the rot in the bottom of the roster, so be it.

    Krueger is not playing safe. If he is going to fail, he is going to fail his way.

    Glen Sather looked at the Winnipeg Jets in the seventies, saw Hull, Nilsson, and Hedberg, and saw the future of hockey for the next decade, until the medicrities began making rules against the Oilers.

  120. Suntory Hanzo says:

    Not sure if anyone mentioned this, but is it possible they took a pass on Hamrlik after his comments during the strike? Entirely possible the other players don’t want to play with him.

  121. Racki says:

    “Steve Smith”: Yeah, I was kidding.I don’t think I conveyed that well.I am, as ever, fully supportive of Lowetide’s moderation.

    OK, curse the internet and it’s inability to really sarcastic tone!

  122. denny33 says:

    OilClog,

    A few guys mentioned this a few weeks ago…and I agree. Some guys look like they might have given up….Hall is clearly not 100%.But the lack of effort last night gives me a sinking feeling that things might spiral down badly…

    Just hope that the negative stuff does not set in….how many years can you stand losing?

    The split in the locker room makes sense on a lot of fronts – older guys vs newer guys. As I posted last week – even RK expressed frustration at the young forwards unwillingness to dump the puck in…If that is the case, I can see that bothering guys like Ryan Smyth and Belanger.

  123. godot10 says:

    Bar_Qu:
    I think PRV is turning a corner. I believe he is watching the veteran guys like Smyth and seeing what he can do to emulate that type of play. And since he is healthy he is getting more ice time than what Harski had, which looks to be the perfect tonic to his confidence issues. I really believe he will be the 2/3 winger this team needs in its arsenal of 10′s and 9′s (to borrow LT’s phrasing).

    I sure hope we see a few more games like that from him, especially down the soon-to-be-meaningless stretch.

    Well, it is actually more that Smyth, and Eager, and Jones, and Petrell, and Hartikainen are all signifciantly worse hockey players.

    There was never really anything wrong with Paajarvi except that Renney cast him out, because he fit players to fixed slots, rather than take the best players and make roles for them.

    I think Todd Nelson ultimately could never figure out why he was gifted Paajarvi. Nelson asked Paajarvi to do something, and Paajarvi did it. Pretty simple.

  124. Woodguy says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Woodguy,

    I really think LT needs to take a harder stance with trolls.I don’t want MacT around for other reasons (mostly due to the insipid, incestuous olboysclubculture, and Mac’s lingering stench of failure), but someone here started digging up shit from 25 years ago and the discussion got totally derailed by that.Don’t like Mac?Fine, welcome to the club.But – and you know who you are – don’t start stupid arguments that have nothing to do with anything going on today.

    I’ve run some pretty big online forums in the late 90s and early-mid 2000s and the only answer to this shit before it gets out of hand – and it will, because this blog is growing and the feebleminded simpletons have started to discover it – is to terminate trolls with extreme prejudice.First a warning and explanation of how things work, then a swift and permanent kick in the ass.

    Most of the time the conversation stays pretty on topic and most people are adults.

    Except around elections.

  125. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    denny33,

    I’m really excited for Huberdeau. He’s having a great season and looks like a player. Him and RNH played well at the WJC together before being split up IIRC (though, RNJ outplayed everyone).

    At any rate, I just wanted to say, I don’t thinking pitting young stars, or even plugs, against one another, especially in small sample sizes, tells us much.

    I think it is fair to say that RNH overachieved last year and is underachieving this year (against REs), but new elements of his game have sparkled this year, he appears destined to go under the knife soon and he seems to be suffering from terrible luck.

  126. bookje says:

    Racki: OK, curse the internet and it’s inability to really sarcastic tone!

    Yesterday someone thought I was serious that the next move for management should be to fire the equipment staff. It seems to me that some internet connections are particularly bad at transmitting sarcasm. I suspect that those same internet connections also have trouble with transmitting other nuanced concepts.

  127. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bar_Qu: And since he is healthy he is getting more ice time than what Harski had, which looks to be the perfect tonic to his confidence issues.

    What going on with the Fin anyway? I don’t even remember what happened, nor a reasonable assessment of when he might return.

  128. bookje says:

    Woodguy: Most of the time the conversation stays pretty on topic and most people are adults.

    I don’t know about that WG, somedays this blog veers pretty far astray from its roots as a Wit and Math blog. At times it seems like people are just discussing hockey here, particularly on nights the Oilers play.

  129. justDOit says:

    Suntory Hanzo:
    Not sure if anyone mentioned this, but is it possible they took a pass on Hamrlik after his comments during the strike?Entirely possible the other players don’t want to play with him.

    I think that was blown out of proportion when it happened, but if any guy in the league is justified in expressing his frustration with the players’ representative, it’s Hamrlik. He’s been through three work stoppages and lost about 130 games because of them.

  130. godot10 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    denny33,

    I’m really excited for Huberdeau. He’s having a great season and looks like a player. Him and RNH played well at the WJC together before being split up IIRC (though, RNJ outplayed everyone).

    At any rate, I just wanted to say, I don’t thinking pitting young stars, or even plugs, against one another, especially in small sample sizes, tells us much.

    I think it is fair to say that RNH overachieved last year and is underachieving this year (against REs), but new elements of his game have sparkled this year, he appears destined to go under the knife soon and he seems to be suffering from terrible luck.

    I don’t think any 19-year coming close to a saw-off against Jonathan Toews is underachieving.

  131. Woodguy says:

    godot10: I don’t want the team that I am a fan of to kill the game like Phoenix and most other teams now do.

    Krueger is trying to play an agressive attacking system, and the bottom of the roster isn’t capable of playing it.

    Krueger sold Justin Schultz on the notion that the Oilers were going to play hockey.

    Hall, Nugent-Hopkins, and Eberle were outplaying the best lines in the league playing Krueger’s system.There really isn’t anything wrong with it.

    Do you want to win a Stanley Cup or do you just want to be respectable and do just whatever everybody else is doing, to CYA?

    Krueger is not coaching for mediocrity. If it exposes the rot in the bottom of the roster, so be it.

    Krueger is not playing safe.If he is going to fail, he is going to fail his way.

    Glen Sather looked at the Winnipeg Jets in the seventies, saw Hull, Nilsson, and Hedberg, and saw the future of hockey for the next decade, until the medicrities began making rules against the Oilers.

    You need speedy D and defensively aware forwards to play RK’s uptempo pressure system where the D often skate up the jam at the blue line or neutral zone.

    Having the C, especially the C, and the wingers cover for the D when they do that is critical.

    By my eye 93 is good at it and getting better, 89 is meh, 10 was good, 20 is meh and 54 was poor.

    We’ve seen many more 2 on1′s against the OIlers this year because of the system.

    When you see one, look to see where the C is, then the first winger.

    14, 4, 28, and 64 have been bad at drag assing back, 64 got much, much better , still doesn’t know where to go.

    83 isn’t bad at it, 94 is slow. 55 hasn’t a clue and 37 is meh.

    Compound that with immobile 6, slowish 15, rookie 19, struggling 2 (seems better now on making the pinch decision), slow 45 with poor decisions, 44 with poor decisions, and a decent 5 and you have a recipe for a lot of shots against.

    Then,

    Take the fact that only 4-93-14 seem to get multiple shots in the ozone, 64-89-83 seemed to be one and done, (the other lines have almost no offense, but 28 is helping a little there) and you have a recipe to get not a lot of shots for.

    The result is getting out shot almost every game.

    They have been out attempted 20 of the 22 games.

    The system demands everyone do their job to defend against the shot against and they are too young, slow, and dumb as a group to go it.

    I think RK’s system will work with more mobile defenders who make better pinch decisions, but it won’t come together this year.

    It also needs C’s and wingers who immediately bee-line back as soon as they lose the puck in the ozone and the lollygagging back checking habits have not been driven from these men.

    Its a work in progress that is missing about 3 D and 2 F’s from making it happen.

    Lollygaggers.

  132. Woodguy says:

    godot10:
    I’m really excited for Huberdeau. He’s having a great season and looks like a player. Him and RNH played well at the WJC together before being split up IIRC (though, RNJ outplayed everyone).
    At any rate, I just wanted to say, I don’t thinking pitting young stars, or even plugs, against one another, especially in small sample sizes, tells us much.
    I think it is fair to say that RNH overachieved last year and is underachieving this year (against REs), but new elements of his game have sparkled this year, he appears destined to g

    When 4-93-14 are together they are out shooting the best lines in hockey.

    They are not the problem.

    The other 3 lines and all three sets of D are.

  133. godot10 says:

    It is sort of funny that I was sort of an Adam Larsson guy until a couple of weeks before the draft when I capitulated to the concensus, and now I am one of the only “beiievers” left in Nugent-Hopkins! -).

    Nail…your future greatest supporter! (I was a Murray guy till close to the very end!.) They will turn on you soon. They will deny you.

    They turned on Hall earlier this year. They are currently abandoning Eberle in droves.

    I truly don’t know whether to laugh or cry.

  134. Racki says:

    Woodguy: When 4-93-14 are together they are out shooting the best lines in hockey.

    They are not the problem.

    The other 3 lines and all three sets of D are.

    I’m not even sure the 2nd line with Yakupov on it is even part of the problem… I’m not much of a stats guy though. But without a doubt, that top line is one of few things right about this team, and the bottom six isn’t an NHL caliber bottom six.

  135. Racki says:

    By the way, this isn’t meant to fuel the crazy off-topic debate about MacTavish’s non-hockey life, but Robin Brownlee just tweeted (and I agree with what he’s saying) that if the team bottoms out again, while both Lowe and Tambo should be gone, it will be solely Tambellini. I honestly think both should be gone if this doesn’t work. The other thing he mentioned is MacTavish would be the next GM. I have to say I think MacTavish is a smart man, but they need some fresh ideas in here.. the more things change, the more they stay the same.

    That said, I don’t know who is available as a GM that the Oilers could hire. Definitely not Burke. They would probably have to think outside the box.

  136. dawgtoy says:

    Woodguy,

    Awesome use of the word lollygaggers BTW.

  137. bookje says:

    This is a very funny Mila Kunis interview

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_profilepage&v=z4Ezruu1oeQ#!

    I suspect I would do no better than this guy.

  138. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    godot10: I don’t think any 19-year coming close to a saw-off against Jonathan Toews is underachieving.

    compared to his REs (strict box cars) he is. that doesn’t mean he is an underachiever or is underachieving per se… but that the offence (due to injury, puck luck, higher comp, etc.) is slack:

    http://oilersnation.com/2013/2/23/the-good-the-bad-and-the-reasonable

    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins MINUS SIX Actual: 15, 1-6-7 (RE: 14, 4-9-13). The Nuge is injured and it is certainly having an impact on him. On the other hand, like all gifted offensive players he’s getting chances galore and if healthy I belive the Nuge would be on pace. At this point, he’s having a disappointing season.

    it hasn’t gotten much better since that post.

  139. Racki says:

    Sophomore jinx happens to a large amount of players in the NHL.. might not be anything more than that.. no need to hit any panic buttons. He has a large capacity hockey brain, but is young and figuring things out yet, and teams are naturally focusing on him more. Gaining strength in that boy body of his will help down the road too.

  140. godot10 says:

    If Krueger plays it safe, like some people want him too, he is going to alienate the elite talent that everybody wanted, and there will be no incentive for them to stay.

    Be careful what you wish for.

    I really don’t give a damn that Ryan Smyth is old and slow and can’t keep up. Retire.

  141. godot10 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: compared to his REs (strict box cars) he is. that doesn’t mean he is an underachiever or is underachieving per se… but that the offence (due to injury, puck luck, higher comp, etc.) is slack:

    Those Realistic Expectations were based on an expected role. I really don’t believe that Lowetide expected Nugent-Hopkins to be handed the tough minute centre role AND much tougher zone starts AND 20 plus minutes a game.

    Aren’t we supposed be to advanced stats guys now? But as soon as the boxcars go haywire, mostly because of an abysmal shooting percentage, people obsess over the abysmal boxcars rather than look at the advanced stats in a far more challenging role.

  142. Jordan says:

    Woodguy,

    Great great great post.

    I think this also does a lot to explain why 91 looks so good this year – this system was designed with players like him in mind.

    However, one of the obvious problems right now is that the system doesn’t complement the rest of the team. I think the system would a great one if there was more speed on the backend, and in the forwards corps. However, it seems to me that you’re setting up a team to fail when you play a system that the players lack the abilities to implement.

    Either management needs to get the right players for the system, or the coach needs to run a system that complements the players we have.

  143. sliderule says:

    I am nominating LT for GM.

    Need a tough winger he was going to sign Winnik. Oil sign Petrell

    Need a top four defender he was going to trade for Streit.Oil trades for Fistric

    These two moves alone would have got us another four points and put us in playoff race.

    Ok let’s get campaign going

  144. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    godot10: Those Realistic Expectations were based on an expected role.I really don’t believe that Lowetide expected Nugent-Hopkins to be handed the tough minute centre role AND much tougher zone starts AND 20 plus minutes a game.

    Aren’t we supposed be to advanced stats guys now?But as soon as the boxcars go haywire, mostly because of an abysmal shooting percentage,people obsess over the abysmal boxcars rather than look at the advanced stats in a far more challenging role.

    ummm…. what?

    I’m neither claiming to be an adv. stats guy, nor obsessing over abysmal boxcars. re-read the thread.

  145. DeadmanWaking says:

    Warning: Yet another rambling post co-opted by The Man. And it’s all such tedious business–blame is so damn concise and somehow I refuse to absorb this simple lesson.

    Romulus Apotheosis: I keep seeing that scene from Moneyball go through my head, where Beane is sitting around a table of ancient legacy men talking “saw him good” and relying on their fuzzy memories.

    The only difference being that when Brad Pitt wags his pen at the smart fat kid to add up those three batting averages, MacT interrupts with the correct answer faster than the fat kid from Yale can process that he has just been granted the right to open his mouth in a room containing more than three people.

    I’m happy to finally be among the experts where the issues are many and solutions obvious. I appreciate TSN providing a safe haven for unemployed coaches, as we rehabilitate ourselves towards future employability.

    This was said by:

    A) Craig MacTavish
    B) Grady Fuson

    (The above quote lifted from a old piece by David Staples.)

    The blundering elephant in the room with MacTavish boils down to one simple number: 193 career playoff games. This is a man blessed over his long career to be able to treat the regular season as extended spring training. As a coach, when he actually managed to get his crew into the playoffs, he often did so by treating the late season run as a preliminary playoff round. He was a superb coach in the 90-110% effort band, and he sucked as a coach in the 75-90% effort band where a mediocre team needs to take refuge over the course of a long regular season to marshal its limited reserves (Krueger has religion on this point). MacT himself played in that 80% effort band often enough (e.g. run up a 6-1 score over the first two periods, then close it out with a relaxing skate) only in his playing experience this usually resulted in a 110 point season.

    So let’s revisit our favorite example of results when it really matters. That remains the ultimate performance metric, does it not?

    From Conklin or Markkanen? For Oilers, it’s all mental

    In 37 Oilers games this season, Markkanen was 15-12 with a 3.13 goals-against average and .880 save percentage. Conklin was 8-5 with a 2.80 GAA and .880 save percentage.

    From another source: “For the entirety of Edmonton’s postseason run, Roloson finished with a .927 save percentage and 2.33 goals-against average.”

    If we had had Roloson for the whole season (say an extra 40 games played), that could feasibly have translated into a 25 goal improvement in goal differential, moving us from +5 to +30. Carolina translated a goal differential of +34 into 112 points in the standings and second place in the Eastern Conference. Who called them Cinderella? Certainly our team was a dark horse (bonus: it actually built around the dark horseman of the apocalypse). The closest we came to Cinderella was one Fernando Pisani.

    Doctor: I have no idea what’s causing your colitis to flair up. We’ve eliminated every food know to medicine that triggers a colitic reaction. I should know, I wrote the textbook myself.

    Fernando: Uh … mmmm … uh … not quite.

    Doctor: WHAT did you just say?

    Fernando: Uh, I’ve been holding out … on … on … on my Cinderella Flakes. It’s my game day breakfast food. I just don’t play well without them!

    Doctor: Well STOP eating them YOU IDIOT!

    [Two months later they meet again.]

    Doctor: [Examines notes] Ah, I see in our last meeting we seem to have eliminated one last dietary item that had somehow escaped our vigilant net. How did that work out?

    Fernando: Well, you’re now the proud owner of a solid gold chair in the reception room. If you decide to move it, be careful, don’t hurt your back. A distressing number of people have injured themselves trying to hoist solid gold objects wherever I’ve been lately.

    Doctor: So I take it you’re feeling better now? How’s your performance in your sport? You’re a hockey player … yes, that’s right. Would you say your subsequent performance was below average, average, or above average?

    Fernando: Man, you don’t get out much, do you?

    Turns out Cinderella Flakes take effect only once you cease to eat them and the surge lasts for a few months, before you return to normal.

    I think sometimes MacT was so fixated on going deep in the playoffs he was his own worst enemy in the regular season. He asked for too much intensity too often over the long season and paid the price when the cheque finally bounced off concrete and the team came out flat and listless, at which point the fan base instantly blames the players for not giving a damn, which does nothing to help the mood in the room (or the mood in the league about wanting to play here). It was hard for him to relate after playing on so many teams that snuck their rest breaks into the regular season by potting three goals in the first five minutes of play.

    I think Forsberg’s coach once replied to a question about Peter not knowing when to tone it down that he would “rather reign in a thoroughbred than have to prod a pancake-fed draft horse”.

    Peter Drucker says that when you build a management team, you work to strengths and you offset weakness. Every member of your management team should be extremely good at at least one thing, and mainly doing that one thing, so much as possible. There’s a good chance MacT read that passage during his recent stint at MBA boot camp. He might very well have read several papers by Daniel Kahneman on the human propensity to over-value the short term, when it most often works out better to patiently hold course and keep your powder dry.

    What scientific concept would improve everybody’s cognitive toolkit? talks about “time horizon”:

    Level 1 encompasses jobs such as sales associates or line workers handling routine tasks with a time horizon of up to three months.

    Levels 2 to 4 encompass various managerial positions with time horizons between one to five years.

    Level 5 crosses over to five to 10 years and is the domain of small company CEOs and large company executive vice presidents.

    Beyond Level 5, one enters the realm of statesmen and legendary business leaders comfortable with innate time horizons of 20 years (Level 6), 50 years (Level 7) or beyond.

    Level 8 is the realm of 100 year thinkers like Henry Ford, while Level 9 is the domain of the Einsteins, Gandhis, and Galileos, individuals capable of setting grand tasks into motion that continue centuries into the future.

    There’s presently a mood brewing to replace Tambi with any old chump so long as he’s operating at time horizon Right Fucking Now!

    I believe that Lowe and Katz made an explicit decision to bring Tambi in as front-line GM because he’s comfortable operating at TH level 4 (aka “evaluating”). In my estimation, Krueger has been instructed to think clearly at level 4 for the present season (developing the studs), but to contract to a shorter horizon of 3–4 for next season, with a further descent to level 2 if and when we ever again make the playoffs. Katz probably operates in the span of 4–6, with Lowe operating at 4–5 and with MacT consulting across the full range from 2–6 as things come up. Nothing is ever routine for an equipment manager or medical staff, so these people are operating at level 2 hour-by-hour, rising to level 3 where appropriate. Joey Moss and the Zamboni driver operate at level 1 (this is no slag, we don’t all need to be stress kittens). Lowe’s main job hasn’t even been on ice performance: he’s been busy shaking the old boys network to procure a shiny new $500 million facility on extremely favourable terms (nearly scuppered by greed, but always a leopard remains true to his spots).

    This is all excellent Detroit-model order of business (if playing it close to the brink as shaggy leopards will do).

    The lynch-pin of the counter argument is Damaged Assets! Our über elite young men are actually fragile daisies carefully disguised as über elite athletes. This continued cesspool of losing corrodes their fragile daisy mojo. Well, doesn’t it?

    No, I highly doubt it. Our young stallions aren’t losing a damn thing when they’re out there on the ice, and they know it. They are very near to consistently outplaying other top lines in the league. Most of the losing they’ve experienced has occurred between shifts. It is important to keep the game situations competitive, so that you gain experience battling against the your opponent’s best effort; plus it would be awfully nice to also gain some experience in slowly and surely breaking their will. We’re apparently a whole lot further from that day than I anticipated at the season outset. Alarming? Yes. Emergency? No. We know the reasons.

    One final observation: if Nuge, Yak, and Justin were all still playing in the AHL we’d presently have the best depth of any team in the NHL. This is the problem with the “window is now” argument. The sonic boom of instant arrival leaves in its wake a gaping hole in the second salvo. (Not all rebuilds are created equal. Ours was a gaping crater. Not quite large enough to consult with Slartibartfast, but pretty close. In a baby rebuild, former maturing prospects and aging first line players take second line roles under a second line salary structure. Assets carried forward on those terms seem to be confined to Smid and Hemsky. One dozen freshly baked ANPs coming right up!)

    No second salvo, and third salvo remains a work in progress. I say “Better luck next year.” The New 100% went presto pressbox. Yak is far too green in the defensive zone. Nuge is not all there in body. Our lack of depth at center bit us in the ass at the earliest opportunity.

    Others say: “Open turnstile. Rent a Salvo! FTW!” If that’s what you want, Tambi is without question the wrong man for the job. No arguments there. And yes, other teams have procured excellent apartment furnishings driving around town in a beat-up pickup truck spotting valuable items with “FREE” taped on in big letters; the lucky bastards have even gone to the Sunday swap meet and come home winners. Proof positive It Can Be
    Done (bed bugs not included or double your money refunded).

    So there it is, my magnum opus on smooth-rolling magnetic deck-chair mounting fixtures. Try not to hold it against me: I’m on record as a young man supremely damaged in my assessment of imminent sunrise, a living example of the fragile daisies I refuted back at the fourth Esso station.

  146. sliderule says:

    So dead man walking can I capsulate by saying we need more patience?

  147. DBO says:

    godot10,

    Stop talking sense. Easy there fella, time to go back to pitchforks and mob mentality. The kids are not the problem, it is the role they are asked to play about 2 years too soon. Said it before, need 26-30 yr old vets who can play and contribute, and add the things the kids are missing = two way play, physical play, PK ability. What we have is older, slower players who are OK at these disciplines and do not excel at any of them. Move out the bottom, add real players who are not on their last legs.

    Move Belanger and replace him with Boyle (send them prospects or Jones as well to make it happen).

    Move a pick for Clowe and see if he is a guy who fits, and if he is then offer him a good deal to stay. if he isn’t then let him walk.

    Throw a boatload of money at Clarkson, if you can’t get him then go get great locker room and player fav Penner who at least gives you size, enough speed and two way play and has a shot to still get you 25 goals. You know, real players..

    Buyout Horcoff if he is a locker room problem. If he isn’t then let him run on the 3rd line with real players and see what happens.

    Have a 4th line with Smyth, Harsky/Brown and Boyle. Say bye to Ryan after next year and replace him with Harsky (who can come into and out of the lineup if needed).

    Lander takes over for Horcoff in a year or two, and we are golden.

    To end season:
    Hall-Nuge-Eberle
    Clowe-Gagner-Yakupov
    Paajarvi-Horcoff-Hemsky
    Smyth-Boyle-Jones
    Brown-Petrell

    Next year/off season you consider moving Hemsky for something we need (like a dman), you consider moving Gagner because he will get $4 mill (with his points you could get Hanzal perhaps), and he doesn’t bring enough if we don’t give him wingers who can compete (solved if we get a Clarkson or Clowe), but I like him so keep him if it is reasonable in cost. Then the whole off season is spent trying to get a real top end dman, even if it means 1st rd picks.

    But mostly, clear the front office out and start with a new vision. Sucking and drafting high is not a vision, it is a sign of mental stupidity and a giant lack of vision. Losing is not a vision, it is a result of terrible management not “a plan”.

  148. BlacqueJacque says:

    DeadmanWaking,

    If I recall correctly, the Oilers traded for Rollie late in the season.

  149. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy,

    There is “on topic” and then there is post value. Some people post the same things over and over with no factual backing or even reasoning behind them. Typically hyper-negative folk always preaching dokn and gloom because even a stopped clock is right twice a day.

  150. denny33 says:

    godot10,

    i am the biggest fan of RNH. I have said that I think he will be the best player on our team in 4 years.

    But RNH has 1 goal scored playing with Taylor Hall and Jordan Berle. Yes, I know he is playing quality comp ( Minny, Calgary, Colorado Colubmus )

    Defensively, RNH is very aware and taken that part of his game up. No question.

    RK said it last week – he thinks it is not a defending problem it is a goals for problem. And I agree for the most part.

    The fact remains – our 1st line cetnre has only 1 goal and that speaks for itself.

  151. justDOit says:

    On the ‘horrific hockey injury’ front, tweets from the NYR say that Staal is expected to make a full recovery. Any hockey player who watches that replay and still foregoes the use of a visor is, in my opinion, a fool.

    Ronny Keller, who was playing in the Swiss league, may not be so fortunate. He went head first into the boards on what looked to be an icing play and couldn’t move or feel anything afterwards. He had emergency surgery and the doctors say it might be 2 or 3 months before they know if he’s going to ever walk again. They put the odds at 50/50.

    Good luck to both young men.

  152. Racki says:

    justdoit: That is awful about the player in Swiss League. The shocker I guess is that there is NO touch icing in the Swiss League. I guess that can’t solve all the injuries. Having played my share of contact hockey with touch icing, I can say that it would do a lot more good than harm to change to no-touch icing, but I guess you can’t completely avoid all the injuries from that change.

  153. regwald says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    DeadmanWaking,

    If I recall correctly, the Oilers traded for Rollie late in the season.

    He was acquired on trade deadline day. He played 19 regular season games with the Oilers prior to the playoffs.

  154. justDOit says:

    Racki,

    They have no-touch, eh? Well the video is quite poor, but see for yourself. Be warned: THIS IS UPSETTING TO WATCH!

    http://www.lematin.ch/sports/hockey/ronny-keller-evacue-helicoptere/story/13701924

  155. BlacqueJacque says:

    Anyone else going to watch Leafs-Sens?

  156. BlacqueJacque says:

    justDOit,

    You know, I thought the same thing after the Sundin injury. Some people refuse to learn from others’ examples.

  157. justDOit says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Plan on watching the Avs de-throne the Hawks – BOOK IT!

  158. wheatnoil says:

    Lowetide,

    Apologies for my contribution to this thread jumping the track so horribly.

    This team has an odd notion of asset management. I understand the sentiment of not losing somebody for nothing. However, this talk of Smid possibly being traded is mind-blowing. At some point, the organization needs to decide on the players it is willing to pay to keep. So far, they’ve decided on Hall and Eberle. Fair enough. However, Smid, Petry, and J. Schultz have made strong cases being a part of a future top 4 or at worst top 5. At some point in time you need to keep that talent. Lord knows the Oilers have few enough NHL defensemen… they can’t possibly consider losing more NHL defensemen with no guarantee of one coming back.

    I understand if the Oilers balk at signing Smid with term. Defensemen get injured and Smid is no stranger to the IR. You don’t want to tie someone down to a 5 year contract and have him only play 40 games a year (though there’s no indication Smid would be so chronically injured, however he does play a difficult position). The fact is, Smid is undeniable quality and the Oilers have no one coming through the pipeline who can replace Smid next year. There should be NO talk of trading this guy at the deadline. A 2 year deal should be doable, even 3 years if Smid wants slightly more stability. The fact is that Smid is a solid defensive defenseman with a reputation of playing hard and blocking shots. If he needs to move because of cap reasons, you’ll always be able to find a taker if the term isn’t too long. Someone will grab him. So there’s a low risk here, even if he forces a slight overpay. There’s a low chance of Smid getting stuck on the roster ala a Horcoff contract (not saying we should trade him either!).

    Summary: Sign Smid! Doesn’t have to be long-term. 2-3 years even if you have to pay a little more. If the Oilers hit the cap crunch, there will always be a market for players like Smid, even if the salary is a touch high, so long as the term is reasonable.

  159. jake70 says:

    justDOit:
    On the ‘horrific hockey injury’ front, tweets from the NYR say that Staal is expected to make a full recovery. Any hockey player who watches that replay and still foregoes the use of a visor is, in my opinion, a fool.

    Ronny Keller, who was playing in the Swiss league, may not be so fortunate. He went head first into the boards on what looked to be an icing play and couldn’t move or feel anything afterwards. He had emergency surgery and the doctors say it might be 2 or 3 months before they know if he’s going to ever walk again. They put the odds at 50/50.

    Good luck to both young men.

    Just saw the youtube clip, man that is a terrible hit/play. Very unfortunate. It’s like the Brad Richards/Kaleta but at higher speed and Keller basically going in perpendicular to the boards.

  160. BlacqueJacque says:

    justDOit,

    Hope you jinxed it.

    I have a secret desire I dare not name.

  161. justDOit says:

    jake70,

    The thing that bothers me though, is that Keller tried the ‘early stop, throw the shoulder’ move to initiate contact, but lost the momentum battle in a big way.

  162. justDOit says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    justDOit,

    Hope you jinxed it.

    I have a secret desire I dare not name.

    As long as that doesn’t involve rule 34 of the internet!

  163. BlacqueJacque says:

    WOW. Dziurzynski can throw a punch, but McLaren can take one AND deliver one… and it turns out Dziurzynski can’t take a punch. Shades of Ratis Ivanans being taken out by Steve MacIntyre.

    It’s horrific… dude needed teammates to carry him to his feet and take him to the end of the ice. When he tried skating, it was pitiful.

    Such an exciting play but such a horrible result.

    Will it change the result of the game?

  164. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    justDOit: http://www.lematin.ch/sports/hockey/ronny-keller-evacue-helicoptere/story/13701924

    I went to that link and then got distracted by this for awhile:

    http://www.lematin.ch/sports/football/Les-naiades-du-beach-soccer/story/12864176

    photo 1 is coy and fun. photo 12 is well past stretching the limits of “good taste”

  165. Racki says:

    justDOit:
    Racki,

    They have no-touch, eh? Well the video is quite poor, but see for yourself. Be warned: THIS IS UPSETTING TO WATCH!

    http://www.lematin.ch/sports/hockey/ronny-keller-evacue-helicoptere/story/13701924

    Yah, all Euro leagues have been no-touch icing for quite some time, I believe. All I can say in response to something like that hit is it was extremely irresponsible of the hitter. I remember when I was in minor hockey, hitting from behind was just barely starting to get clamped down on. Before that, I could remember several times where an opposing forward would do their best to run me through the boards on an icing play. Hell, I even had a coach dump it in the corner in practice and have me and his son chase after it.. I won the race to the puck, but ate boards. I’m about 99% sure that this was what the coach was wanting to see too (I’ll save that rant for another time).

    I’ve always hated the play. Forwards have an extreme advantage there and most don’t seem to give to shits about what happens to the guy they hit. In fairness though, it’s one of those plays where you’re damned if you do, damned if you don’t.. the defenseman can’t hold back.. the forward can’t really ease up. But at the same time, you should be smart enough to know that if you shove a guy in the back at that distance from the boards, the outcome is going to be ugly.

    I dunno. It’s been a hot-button topic for me for many years because of the number of times i had to deal with it first hand.

  166. raventalon40 says:

    RNH might not be ready to produce offensively against the toughs but he is holding his own defensively (saw him good?) right now. Maybe what he needs right now is to be sheltered.

    Hall-Gagner-Hemsky

    should be our first line and let RNH and Eberle get back to form against some weaker opposition.

    Hall’s ready to go though, by my eye.

  167. justDOit says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Now THERE’S a sport I can get behind! Well, until the restraining order(s) are filed, that is.

  168. BlacqueJacque says:

    Leafs score first on an ugly rush despite being outplayed, and are now keeping Ottawa in their own zone THEY SCORE!

    2-0 Toronto. Holy shit what a blast by McClement.

  169. Racki says:

    2 Oilers scouts at that Leafs/Sens game. They do have some big centremen that can win draws that would be nice to have. But I’d imagine that’s not what they’re keeping an eye on.

  170. justDOit says:

    A wild night in NY – this is the opening faceoff:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6MFRpipkQu8&

  171. godot10 says:

    raventalon40:
    RNH might not be ready to produce offensively against the toughs but he is holding his own defensively (saw him good?) right now. Maybe what he needs right now is to be sheltered.

    Hall-Gagner-Hemsky

    should be our first line and let RNH and Eberle get back to form against some weaker opposition.

    Hall’s ready to go though, by my eye.

    There is no reason to shelter Nugent-Hopkins because he isn’t failing the tough minutes test. He is passing it, at effing nineteen.

  172. BlacqueJacque says:

    justDOit,

    That can’t be from today, can it?

    Prust is in Montreal I thought?

  173. justDOit says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    My bad – I think you’re right about Prust.

    BTW: I just saw the youtube clip of that Sens/Leafs fight – difficult to watch that one.

  174. icecastles says:

    justDOit: A wild night in NY – this is the opening faceoff:

    That game was played in March 2012. A year ago.

  175. justDOit says:

    icecastles,

    Yes, thanks again for pointing that out. Once again, my bad.

    Edit: although I didn’t exactly say which wild night it was.

  176. Racki says:

    SPekaing of fights…
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=EiUWyI3FuQA
    McLaren KOs Dziurzynski… NHL enforcer is without a doubt the toughest job in hockey. Dizzy is a good nickname for him now if he didn’t have it before.. suffered a concussion. Can’t help that he went face down on the ice.

  177. RMGS says:

    I thought the Oilers are supposed to be following the Chicago model:

    From TSN.ca: Despite having earned at least one point in each of their 23 games this season, the Chicago Blackhawks are still looking to improve.

    TSN Hockey Insider Pierre LeBrun of ESPN spoke to Blackhawks GM Stan Bowman who told LeBrun that he’s called teams about players that he’s looking for.

    “I’m probably more looking up front, depth maybe at center,” Bowman said. “Not high-end but more a role-playing type center.”

  178. icecastles says:

    There is frequent talk on here about Nuge’s shoulder injury having a significant impact on his game. I know he was assessed before the WJs and sat out a game early in the season, but beyond that do we have any evidence that it is indeed a shoulder injury and it is indeed bothering him?

    He is playing a more physical game than he was last year and hasn’t been shy in almost any regard. Watching him play, I just don’t see it. I appreciate that it feels like almost a given that if you are an important part of the Oilers team, you will probably have a shoulder injury, that Nuge did suffer from one a year ago, and that it is a convenient way to explain his lack of scoring.

    But it just doesn’t seem to hold water for me. At the very least, it doesn’t seem like something we can just run with as a proven fact. Indeed, I don’t think it’s necessary at all to ‘explain’ RNH’s troubles so far.

    As has been previously mentioned, sophomore slumps are so-named for a reason. They take on more responsibilities, opposing teams get a bit of a book on them (seeing the latter big time with Eberle, in my opinion), and they are more specifically targeted. Add to this the fact that Nuge has gone from being extremely sheltered with primo minutes to taking on a massive role with linemates who, while highly skilled, are also still learning the pro game and coming to terms with facing top opposition.

    These are enormous things to overcome. It seems to be impacting his confidence/frustration level now and thus compounding the issue, but I just don’t get this sense that he is for sure playing hurt. It’s not impossible, but why are we taking it as fact?

    Edit: Wow, I overuse the word “indeed”. I am indeed sorry about that.

  179. BlacqueJacque says:

    icecastles,

    He’s missed the net a lot. Not just not getting the puck in, but even on the net. Suggests some sort of shoulder injury, remember Hemsky or even Hall (look at all the slappers he’s shooting – not getting the goals, but shooting more.)

  180. icecastles says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    icecastles,

    He’s missed the net a lot.Not just not getting the puck in, but even on the net.Suggests some sort of shoulder injury, remember Hemsky or even Hall (look at all the slappers he’s shooting – not getting the goals, but shooting more.)

    Hmm, that’s a really good point. The aim thing does seem to need more explanation than what I was able to offer, and the shoulder notion would do that. Not only missing the net, but the low shooting percentage on the ones that get through – not nearly as much power behind the shots – and some of the wonky passing we’ve seen.

    Someone mentioned he had changed sticks at the beginning of the year, but there’s no way a player of his calibre takes that long to adjust to a new stick. Well, if his new stick were a branch or a noodle, maybe.

    So yeah, your point definitely adds some credence. Thanks.
    (sitting here fretting now about yet another shoulder injury. Goddamnit.)

  181. B S says:

    icecastles,

    Maybe he’s been borrowing sticks from Ryan Smyth. Still injury seems like the major possibility. his timing has been off this season (compared to last year) he’s still finding those open passes, though less often, but he’s getting them there too late or too soon, when last year those were tape-to-tape. That suggests either a major change in his equipment, or injury.

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