MIND KEEPS ON RINGING LIKE A FIRE ALARM

“On the morning of the draft, there’s all kinds of crosstalk and scuttlebutt about Columbus’s plans for the seventh pick overall. One thing is certain: the Blue Jackets would feel much better about their pick if it were sixth, and all the more so at number 4 or number 3. The way the Blue Jackets and a lot of other teams see it, there’s an elite group of six draft-eligibles: Kane, van Riemsdyk, Turris, Gagner, Voracek and Alzner.”

-Future Greats and Heartbreaks, Gare Joyce.

I have this tic in life that when something bugs me it just rolls around in this big skull until closure (or the end of the world) gives me sweet freedom. Right now it’s Sam Gagner. When I get this way, I usually dump it in the comments section or ask speeds and he tells me. Most of you reading this have probably solved a problem or two for me at one time or another, and I thank you for it.

But this Gagner one is a big ass puzzler. I had Parkatti on the Saturday show and Dellow too recently and they can “show” what’s wrong and offer me some idea about cause, but it’s not really concrete, nothing I can tell myself in those 3 minutes between my head hitting the pillow and sleep (if my wife ever kills me btw, that’ll be the reason. Drives her crazy: I fall asleep instantly–women take longer to shut down the brain apparently. Probably more going on).

Dellow’s story is here, please click through because I’m about to commit theft.

Let me explain this table. Jordan Eberle has been on the ice for 311 SF at 5v5 this year. He’s been on the ice for 276 SA. 311-276=35. If the Oilers had taken 48% of the shots with Eberle on the ice, as they have for the past two years, they would be getting outshot 282-305 with him on the ice, which is a shot differential of -23. 35-(-23)=58. So, the Oilers have a shot differential that’s 58 shots better this year with Eberle on the ice than it would be if they were performing as they had between 2010-12 with him on the ice. Repeat for 18 other players.

-Tyler Dellow

 

 

 

 

If you don’t get it right away, return to Dellow’s post and re-read. If you don’t care to bother, Gagner is terrible, Hemsky minorly better and Paajarvi is doing good enough business elsewhere to escape the ‘hell of Petrell’ that is represented by being in the bottom 5 of any Oilers graph associated with advanced stats.

Woodguy (a noted critic of Gagner–he hates him–and I believe he would not be a guy to get into a card game with based on previous conversations) suggested the WOWY graph would tell me the best wingers for Gagner (this is 5×5 zone adj) but the trio he’s flying sorties with doesn’t include anything above 50% (the top W’s are Paajarvi and Yakupov, with Hemsky in there too). Gagner is 42%CF after being 48%CF in the same discipline a year ago and 46%CF two seasons previous. Pretty much in lock step with Tyler’s graph above.

Now to Parkatti, who has helped my liver damage and not much else since I met him (at least he didn’t lie to me about pub opening times like McCurdy). I like his Boys on the Bus blog, it’s a daily read. However, he refuses to print evidence of my own bias on Gagner and so I will probably turn on him soon. Anyway, here’s what he said about a recent Gagner performance against Vancouver:

  • Parkatti (if that is his real name): On the bad side, the Gagner line with Hemsky and Paajarvi were by far the worst line of the night, ending last, 4th last, and 3rd last in Corsi per minute. They saw a heaping tablespoon of Hansen/Roy/Higgins and did absolutely terribly. I realize Roy was probably a bit pumped up playing the first game for his new team, but it was just unacceptable to be dominated in this fashion — Gagner was 16% on the night!

As it turns out, both Hemsky and Paajarvi were hurt, but even so that’s a terrible number and you could pick damn near any game and any set of wingers and Samwise is a disaster at the discipline. 5×5 close, 5×5 overall, it just isn’t working.

OH–by the way–his 5×5/60 is excellent and his boxcars will force a massive raise–think $4.75 times 4 or something equally crazy.

OILERS FORWARDS CORSI REL (20+ GAMES)

corsirel2013

There’s the Corsi Rel (this is the latest, so it’s out of time with Dellow’s graph), which shows him bad but not like the numbers above. Now, I’m a firm believer that these numbers can tell us what’s going on, and trust all of the gents mentioned above to deliver good information. So, there’s a problem, it surrounds Gagner and the three wingers who are also in the photo (Paajarvi, Hemsky and Yakupov).

WHAT’S THE PROBLEM?

asher

Your choices are:

  1. Injuries are hurting that line
  2. Gagner’s cheating too much for offense
  3. The wingers are weaker than people think
  4. The trio can’t deliver Krueger’s gameplan with authority

Please give me you answers, I’d like to know. Size and speed will be accepted as answers (they fall under category 4) and I’ll let the winner choose the music for the GDT Tuesday (if they’d like to and the music isn’t too weird–no Cop Killer crap).

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92 Responses to "MIND KEEPS ON RINGING LIKE A FIRE ALARM"

  1. BlacqueJacque says:

    He’s cheating for offense, especially this year. Just my gut feeling based on what I’ve seen and the results in scoring year over year.

  2. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    I’m a Gagner supporter. fine.

    Still, he’s struggled all year despite the boxcar outbreak (which appears to have taken a healthy regression… is he still the streaky scorer he always was?).

    Prior to this year, one could argue that Gagner was producing “enough”, barely that is, to be where he is and one could bolster an argument for him by noting he wasn’t getting killed in his own end.

    This year, the points (which really came on in the first 20 or games) suddenly blossomed, but everything else collapsed.

    I think more than anything this inversion has left people confused and searching for answers and explanations.

    If the assumption of the Gagner supporter was: the points and defensive work are “passing grade with upside, just wait”, i.e., the expectation was a linear model of growth, up and steady at it… then, this year has thrown a curve ball in that theory.

    Not only has this theory been upended… it has been upended in a truly strange way. It is not simply the case that Gagner’s production and defensive arrows both did a u-turn in the other direction… they shot off in opposite directions: the points coming and the defensive game collapsing.

    I think two things cause this situation to erupt into the consciousness as a decisive problem: the contract situation looming and the curiousness of Gagner’s simultaneous up and down arrows.

    I honestly think if Gagner tanked completely this would be less of a problem (I mean problem in the philosophical sense, i.e., something to be chewed on and which demands an explanation).

    My general thoughts:

    1) If Gagner simply tanked, it would be easier to suggest either an aberration in performance or an injury. because he is producing, this kind of answer is less compelling.

    2) Has Gagner, in a contract year and under a coach that seems to want “up ice pressure,” gotten unconsciously or otherwise the message that scoring is much more important than winning? Perhaps, he is cheating for offence and lollygagging in his own end to either suit his personal ends or to try and accommodate a system that rewards such play (or, he is trying to accommodate a system he has failed to grasp fully).

    3) Is it possible that his time in Austria, on the big surface, taught him a few bad lessons? This seems a reach and presses against incredulity by appearing like more of an excuse than an explanation… but I’m curious about whether he picked up some of the proverbial “bad habits” during the lockout.

  3. DBO says:

    Could the answer simply be that he 23 and his linemates have mostly been either kids or Hemsky, who while ok in own zone has never been asked to be the defensive conscience on his line?

    And to your questions I think the answer is all 4. I now start to wonder if 4 is the answer to a lot of the struggles on this team. As much as we all wanted playoffs I don’t believe the management really cared. This was another learning year. New coach, new system, etc. Most of the team lack the speed and smarts to play Ralph’s system it seems. Hope he adjusts to his roster or management adjusts the roster to fit the system. Because right now neither is happening.

    Can anyone explain the key points in Ralph’s system? Why are is this team a step behind? Cause as much as it is easy to say the bottom 6 are old, Gagner’s young fast line is also getting killed.

  4. Gret99zky says:

    The fact that you’ve heard of cop killer impresses me.

    Cheating for O, IMO.

  5. RMGS says:

    I’ll guess that 4 is the main culprit with 1-3 exacerbating the problem. Maybe Coach Krueger’s system’s too tough for any forward group outside 93-4-14 to execute consistently. Didn’t Hemsky comment after a road game where apparently the team trapped a bit more that the trapping allowed him to conserve more energy for offense? It’s grasping at straws, but that’s one tough nut to crack.

  6. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Since I missed out on the last thread yesterday… I just wanted to say something about comparing players, especially young players.

    One of the great things about intensive hockey debates on this blog is the manner in which people crave information, which they are always seeking to prune and sharpen. New data points are constantly introduced, juxtaposed with others, critiqued as for their relevance, etc.

    I really enjoy this. I think it really helps us understand the game. I also think it displays an admirable mental quality for the expansion and critical discernment of knowledge.

    It is, however, when this knowledge is forced into an odd and often narrow conflict between two players that I find it a great deal less admirable and ultimately tiresome. In this case, the search for more information is brought to a decisive close, isolated metrics are raised to uncritical heights and the purpose of comparison no longer serves the end of knowledge but some petty pissing match.

    I frankly don’t see what is learned in forcing comparisons where the sole end sought appears to be the ability to say: “you are wrong”

  7. sliderule says:

    I think if you move Hall onto his left side you would have a whole different picture.

    Yakupov on the right side had trouble getting the puck out of their own end.Got a lot better late.

    All the wingers haven’t been able to cover anybody in own zone partly because of RKs man system so the difference between first and second is primarily Hall as he keeps puck in offensive zone.

  8. Hammers says:

    I like Gags but face facts Quinn didn’t ,putting him as low as 4th line , Renney a bit more 3rd & Ralph has had no choice with injuries . After 6 years his face off % is unacceptable. Question is how much $$$ . I won’t be surprised if his traded .If I could get a Shea Webber for Gags , 1st rd pick and AHL asset I would do it . This team is going nowhere without a recognized top 2 “D” man and Klefbom won’t be the answer like Schultz hasn’t been this year . They will be good but it takes time .

  9. Woodguy says:

    Tyler had a great post about this on Feb 25th.

    http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=5588

    Perhaps if we grovel and beg, he’ll update the data for more games.

    In it, he discovered that 89/83 had about as many shot attempts against per shift as 14/93.

    Where the huge disparity was in shot attempts for per shift.

    The two key areas was how often 89/83 got 0 CF/shift and 2 CF/shit compared to 14/93. Their 1 CF/shift was almost identical (NOTE: CF is corsi for,i.e. shot attempt)

    0 CF PER SHIFT

    89/83 64.5%
    93/14 51.8%

    2 CF PER SHIFT

    89/83 7%
    93/14 14%

    I think these two numbers are where the big dive in CF happen for 89 and each has a different explanation.

    0 CF/SHIFT – I think this can be attributed to “cheating for offense” lack of break out. I’ve often bitched that 89 doesn’t stay as low as 93 when the D get the puck to make it an easy first pass.

    93 gets low and often makes another pass in the dzone to transition north, or skates it out himself.

    89 tends to jailbreak with his line mates and force the D to have to make an amazing pass to continue to have possession in the neutral zone. This also often causes an “off the glass and out” moment as if anyone other than 6, 19 and sometimes 2 has the puck, that pass isn’t going to end well.

    So I think the drop off here is due to the dzone play.

    The 2 CF/shift disparity can be summed with the ability to retain possession in the ozone.

    This is where many fans and MSM stand up and scream WE’RE TOO SMALL!!! Ignoring the fact that little 93 and little 14 retain possession at elite NHL levels. (4 helps that ton, no question)

    The difference by eye is that 4-93-14 are constantly moving in the ozone. This makes is much, much more difficult to check them and get the puck. The edge work all 3 have tends to make most D who chase them look silly. They cycle the puck as effectively as 3 hulking Penners.

    I see 91-89-83 much more stationary and therefore easier to check. This is where size does matter.

    Winning a puck battle standing still certainly favours the larger man, or one with “strong, muscular thighs” 91-89-83 are none of those things.

    There was one game where 91-89-83 were moving around the ozone like 4-93-14 and it was like watching Globetrotters. Unfortunately, its not something they seem to do often.

    That’s one way to look at it.

    I post more as the day goes on.

  10. sliderule says:

    How do Gagners exit stats compare to RNH.

    RNH seems by eye to be involved with moving the puck out either skating out or passing.

  11. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy,

    “moving without the puck”

    maybe it has something to do with the surfaces, but this is something you (or I at least) tend to notice more readily in Basketball. Good basketball players rarely stop moving in the attack zone without the ball and if they do, it is usually to set a pick (which you can’t really do in hockey, unless you get away with it).

    I suspect, however, it is the pace of the game that makes for the viewer difference. I find myself trying to watch the other players without the puck and being drawn toward the action with the puck. I assume most people have the same experience. In basketball, because the ball carrier must either dribble or stop, pivot, pass or shoot… the game has moments of stasis where you can view his range of options and their efforts to get open more readily.

    At any rate, in my limited efforts to watch for “moving without the puck” it appears to me that 83 is the best on this line at trying to stay in motion, but that statement should be taken with a huge grain of salt… as I say, I have trouble focusing away from the puck and anyway, it would only be a “saw him good” assessment.

    is there some stat we can use to reference this rather key ability?

  12. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    sliderule:
    How do Gagners exit stats compare to RNH.

    RNH seems by eye to be involved with moving the puck out either skating out or passing.

    I think this is what you want:

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/03/13/ryan-nugent-hopkins-is-a-wizard-of-puck-possession-zone-exits-suggest/

    relavent text:

    The distribution of the red font is the same for the RNH and Gagner lines as it was for the two players individually. The gap between the trios has closed somewhat since the lines were blended; when I first did this analysis after 15 games the numbers stood at 82% and 64% for the top two lines, which had stayed mostly intact until that point. Flip those percentages around, and that meant the Gagner trio had been twice (36% to 18%) as likely to lose possession of the puck in the act of getting it out. While that often beats the alternative of not getting it out, much more often than not, the punted puck soon comes right back into Oilers territory, the opponents’ attack delayed but not thwarted entirely. Whereas when the team hits the neutral zone in possession, as the Pipe Line so often does, it is much more likely to lead the next offensive thrust in the right direction. Seems inherently obvious.

  13. leadfarmer says:

    Or is it coach Kruegers system is absolutely terrible. The forwards have no idea where they should be in their own zone. The defense has no idea how to break out of their own zone. You can blame the lack of quality defense so muchj, but between Whitney, Potter, Petry, Schultz Jr and even Smid those guys should give up a lot of goals but all can pass fairly well. How does a team with so much speed get only one or two odd man rushes again. Also, there is no support for the puck carrier. If it wasnt for Dubnyk’s excellent year we would be dead last again.

  14. sliderule says:

    The oilers like most teams use several forechecking systems.

    Most of the time they play a 2-1-2 .This is an aggressive system with lots of pinches.

    With a lead or second of back to back do a 1-2-2 trap.

    In their own zone they play a man system.Wingers positioned between slot and point and responsible for checking both.D and center are responsible low.

    This is only from what I have read and can see from TV (not the best as you can’t see whole ice).the oile have never really outlined their systems

  15. FrankenOil says:

    DBO,

    I have an opinion regarding Mgmt and their approach to this season: they never expected the NHL and NHLPA to come to an agreement. A lot of their moves were made just to make sure there was a full (albeit poorly constructed) roster. I think this can be supported by looking at a few factors:

    1) Didn’t adequately replace a lot of the scoring out of OKC with quality minor league veteran players from the outset of this season. They were relying on the gifted kids to provide offense and when the NHL season was suddenly on, OKC went into a tailspin with the loss of all their offense and it wasn’t until Rajala was recalled and Cheechoo was signed, did the team regain some semblance of offensive capability.

    2)Didn’t hire an assistant to fill Krueger’s position or make any real changes to the support structure around Krueger.

    3)Signed a bunch of placeholders (Hordi/Petrell) for an “In case of Emergency,” one-in-a-million chance the season gets played so that they have (what they believed) was a roster capable of starting a season

    4)Didn’t address the back-up goaltender situation – see the placeholder reasoning above.

    5)Didn’t address the blueline situation – well, to be fair, I don’t think this mgmt group knows what to do outside of pray some of the draft picks/Schultz the younger mature fast enough to keep pace with the forward cluster.

    6)Signed Gagner to a 1 year contract. This was (as LT and others pointed out) a poor gamble and was probably thought more as a measure to see if under a new CBA, they could see what the cap was and then go from there. I don’t think they ever expected Gags to play for that amount or potentially have the chance to outperform (at least, statistically) the contract.

    7) Gave Smyth a 2 year deal. I never understood this at the time and I still don’t. The team had all the leverage, but yet, as per the contracts given out post-2006, 1 (or more years) too long. The Oilers I think only expected Smyth to play one more year and just expected that last year to be 2013/2014 and not 2013.

    8) Didn’t let Krueger pick his assistants. I am beginning to wonder, again, if the organization just didn’t love any of the guys out there last summer, named Krueger the coach just so they had someone working on a gameplan and season plan for the roster in case an agreement was reached. Might explain why the decision on Renney was so delayed – the org wasn’t sold on Krueger completely and were hoping someone (MacLelland, Ruff, etc) would shake free. When they didn’t, the decision was made to wait a year and name Krueger coach.

  16. bookje says:

    Gagner is cheating heavily for offence. Why? It’s all about the payday. Moreso than most, Gagner understands the league (having a Dad who played the game helps). Even others who have a brain to understand the league still get caught up in the emotional side of things. You really need to be a second generation NHLer to really understand that its not about the team at times, it is totally about you. Nobody cares about your sacrifices for defence and nobody will pay you for them. At least, not in the same way they will pay you for goals. Sam gets this – his Dad drilled it into his head, and the thrill of being an NHL probably wore off a year or so ago (likely around the time the team told him that they didn’t think he was worth what he wanted). It’s about the money now.

    Hemsky is a wonderfully talented player, but I think its time that those of us who support him admit that he is probably less adaptable to specific systems and roles. He plays Hemsky’s game and that is that. Watch the power play with Hemsky under four different coaching regimes and it is exactly the same. Sometimes it starts differently, but then Hemsky gets the puck and off he goes, over to the sidewall. Don’t get me wrong, he is brilliant, but I am not sure if he is coachable at this stage of his career. So, here goes, I am going to say it. I may regret it, but Hemsky is like a round peg in coach Krugers square peg system. Or maybe it’s just that he is hurt. Or maybe a little of both. Have we checked his body language? Sometimes that is a problem for players.

    MPS – He is learning the game and like a lot of players, he is playing with injured round pegs, goal sucks, an AHL defence at times, some ageing veterans and the rest of the problems plaguing the Oilers. Nothing is wrong with the kid. Kruger gets this and wishes he had a dozen MPS’s around to shape into players.

    Also, two really solid ‘top 4′ NHL defensmen would solve most of the problems that the forwards have. They would cure Smyth’s old man syndrome, Hemsky’s roundedness, Gagners defensive suckatude, MPS’s struggles, etc. I personally think that the real problem with this team is that they are missing the ability to advance the puck from their own zone into the offensive zone and the weak point regarding this is the D. I think the woes of the forwards are mostly the result of the poor makeup of the D.

  17. Woodguy says:

    Line mates question.

    Here are Gagner’s 3 most common wingers and 4 most common Dmen for the last 4 years.

    The + or – next to the name is the increase or decrease in CF% the player had with Gagner (i.e. Hemsky this year is 47.7%CF without Gagner and 41.2% with Gagner, so he’s listed at -6.5%)

    I was going to do top 4 wingers, but there is a big drop off in TOI together in almost every year from 3rd to 4th that only posting 3 made more sense.

    NOTE: The quality of comp plays a role here, but a quick look at BTN shows that the role is fairly consistent. 3rd level comp for the most part, last year was close to 2nd level. Same role every year.

    Some of the increase that we see in CF for players playing with Gagner in most years (except this year) can be partially attributed to seeing easier comp with Gagner than without. Don’t forget that.

    Gagner’s 4 most common wingers and Dmen 12/13 41.8%CF
    Hemsky -6.5
    Paajarvi -4.3
    Yak +4.1

    Petry -1.7
    Smid -3.5
    J.Shultz -7.3
    N.Shultz -3.9

    Gagner’s 4 most common wingers and Dmen 11/12 48.9%CF
    Hemsky +1.9
    Hall +3.9
    Eberle +1.6

    Petry even
    Smid +4.2
    Potter -3.6
    Whitney -0.8

    Gagner’s 4 most common wingers and Dmen 10/11 CH 48.1%
    Paajarvi +0.2
    Omark -0.7
    Hall +1.2

    Gilbert +2.7
    Smid +0.8
    Foster +2.2
    Peckham +4.1

    Gagner’s 4 most common wingers and Dmen 09/10 CF 48.2%
    Penner +0.5
    Nilsson -1.3
    Cogliano +3.0

    Vis +4.5
    Gilbert +5.9
    Smid +2.6
    Grebs +2.9

    Like I stated earlier, I think that a certain amount of the increase in CF% for players playing with Gagner than without is due to easier comp with Gagner.

    I think that showing all 4 years certainly marks this one as the “one off”

    I think a good chunk of it is difficulty with the new system, but it doesn’t let him off the hook as others are working the system well. (gifted line)

  18. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    bookje: I personally think that the real problem with this team is that they are missing the ability to advance the puck from their own zone into the offensive zone and the weak point regarding this is the D. I think the woes of the forwards are mostly the result of the poor makeup of the D.

    I agree with this with the caveat WG has been harping on for a while.

    In the last game I was watching for zone exits to see what happened with his comments in mind.

    While it is certainly true that certain D have a tendency to either dangerously circle back into their own end and lose the puck or to make poor and ill-advised passes….

    there are a lot of forwards on this team that don’t create easy exit options for the D. Jones flirting with the opposition goalie while 6 is trying to pass out of the zone isn’t a very good combination.

    a pox on all their houses!

  19. RexLibris says:

    Hammers:
    I like Gags but face factsQuinn didn’t ,putting him as low as 4th line , Renney a bit more 3rd & Ralph has had no choice with injuries . After 6 years his face off % is unacceptable. Question is how much $$$ . I won’t be surprised if his traded .If I could geta Shea Webber for Gags , 1st rd pick and AHL asset I would do it . This team is going nowhere without a recognized top 2 “D” man and Klefbom won’t be the answer like Schultz hasn’t been this year . They will be good but it takes time .

    Not sure Weber would be there for Gagner. I think Holmgren uses Couturier as barter for Weber this summer.

    Perhaps the Oilers could leverage Gagner for Gardiner with picks making up the difference to either side. The problem with subtracting Gagner from the roster is that there are no 2C options to take his place.

  20. Jordan says:

    Now, I seem to remember a few things related Gagner that seem to pop for me in this discussion. Please bear in mind that my memory is about as reliable as a 14 year old is emotionally stable, so if I’m out to lunch, please let em know.

    1 – As Woodguy points out that article by Tyler does a lot to examine the issues that line is having, and it’s on the follow-up chances generated. That matches what I’ve seen by eye on that line. They aren’t likely to run to the net and pound the puck in. Now, I’ve seen them do it more this year, but that’s like saying I’ve heard a politician tell the truth – it’s still only once in a blue moon. (This qualifies as #5 – Lineup missing element necessary for success, or #4 cannot implement gameplan with current pieces effectively)

    2 – The puck support for defensemen has been an issue, and Gagner is especially apt to bolt the zone and make that first pass harder than it needs to be. I expect that this contributes on two levels – First, if they hit the pass, it makes for a higher calibre scoring chance, because they are more likely to have an odd-man break. At the same time, if they flub the pass, the other team is more likely to have an odd-man break. So, you end up with more chances against, but a higher likelyhood of goals/points with a Hemsky/Gagner/X rushing up into the O-zone. Guess this falls under cheating for O (#2) and implementing gameplan (#4).

    3 – The last thing I want to bring up here is the PK. I know it’s not a part of this discussion, because we’re talking about what’s wrong with the line now, but I see it as connected. Gagner has been a very effective PKer this year. I’m not pulling numbers for you guys, but his numbers have been good, and he’s generated chances and points while on the PK.

    This tells me he gets the positioning and D-side of the game. So, if we know that he can implement the plan the coaches have, and he has the skills to score a lot… the question I have is:

    Why the hell haven’t the coaches told him to not rush up the ice on the breakout and make the passes for the defenseman easier? It’s not a hard thing to change. So either he has been otld and is not executing (which would likely lead to a trip upstairs, and since that hasn’t happened, is unlikely) or he hasn’t been told. Now, if we can see this, so can the coaches, so… then what? Either the coaches are inept, or they’re not playing to win hockey games.

    I’m sure you guys know where I’m at on this based on my other posts, but… This is just more proof that the marching orders this year were never to make the playoffs.

    Meaningful games my ass.

  21. RexLibris says:

    An outside the box question: what are the chances Gagner signs an offer sheet this summer, and ought the Oilers match (obviously depending on the compensation)?

  22. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    RexLibris: Not sure Weber would be there for Gagner. I think Holmgren uses Couturier as barter for Weber this summer.

    Perhaps the Oilers could leverage Gagner for Gardiner with picks making up the difference to either side. The problem with subtracting Gagner from the roster is that there are no 2C options to take his place.

    I think that is why the ideal would be some kind of package of Gagner + for Gardiner and Grabo.

    that way you get the young LD star and retain a reasonable 2C option.

  23. fifthcartel says:

    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 6m

    Lowe to address media at 1030 today.

    Hmmmm, wonder if it’s anything?

  24. Obiwan Eberle says:

    I love all these mathmatical formulas, but they’re always just used to prove how terrible we are. Has someone ever done the advanced stats to give a “best possible” list for the upcoming UFAs, RFAs and trade targets….how would they fit our “system”….do they hit, win faceoffs, take aways Vs give aways and of course, will they completely and full SUCK once they get here?

  25. Bank Shot says:

    Qual Comp has changed for Gagner this season according to the numbers.

    Its the first year he has been higher then 7th amongst his teammates in QUALCOMP, at 5th.

    This would be the first season he has faced the second toughs.

  26. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    fifthcartel:
    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 6m

    Lowe to address media at 1030 today.

    Hmmmm, wonder if it’s anything?

    If he fires Tambi today, the day after Jones’ article I think WG’s case for media collusion will be pretty damn rock solid and rather thinly veiled.

  27. Woodguy says:

    Bank Shot:
    Qual Comp has changed for Gagner this season according to the numbers.

    Its the first year he has been higher then 7th amongst his teammates in QUALCOMP, at 5th.

    This would be the first season he has faced the second toughs.

    The actual number that BTn spits out isn’t as precise as where the player stacks up to their peers.

    I always use “x/14″ for role, where 1-3 are toughs, 4-6 2nd toughs etc.

    Injuries and multiple players can mess with the numbers, but they give a reasonable look.

    I also always use Corsi QC as opponents when every corsi event happens is a nice sample to look at:

    Gagner Forward Rank CorsiQC
    12/13 7/14
    11/12 5/14
    10/11 7/13
    09/10 5/14

    I think his role and on ice opponents has been pretty stable over the last 4 years.

  28. Bank Shot says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: If he fires Tambi today, the day after Jones’ article I think WG’s case for media collusion will be pretty damn rock solid and rather thinly veiled.

    They are probably announcing that Terry Jones is banned from the Team buffet.

  29. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: If he fires Tambi today, the day after Jones’ article I think WG’s case for media collusion will be pretty damn rock solid and rather thinly veiled.

    I’m trying to think of why Lowe would call a presser.

    I can only think of 4 reasons

    1) Fire Tambo
    2) Show support of Tambo and call the dogs off
    3) Announce an addition to the management team
    4) Announce MacT’s cancer is back and that he is taking time off to fight it

    Should be interesting at any rate.

  30. denny33 says:

    Woodguy,

    There is no question that Gagner cheats for offence.

    No question he is way higher in the D zone than RNH for example.

    However, even when Sam is in position he is not very effective against certain match ups.

    I believe I posted this after a St. Louis game – David Backes is only vaguely aware of Sam’s presence…Sam will only lay a stick on people.

    Size is definitely a part of it people.

    Sam Gagner”s *compete* level is dramatically different in the defensive zone.

    The question I have – how can Krueger and coaches continue to allow Sam to exit the zone early and/or not get low enough in the d-zone.

    Patriots coach Belicheck will just loop videos of guys making mistakes for film. Whole team gets to see your play. Again and again.

    Best players taken to task in front of team…

  31. Captain Happy says:

    Woodguy: I’m trying to think of why Lowe would call a presser.

    I can only think of 4 reasons

    1) Fire Tambo
    2) Show support of Tambo and call the dogs off
    3) Announce an addition to the management team
    4) Announce MacT’s cancer is back and that he is taking time off to fight it

    Should be interesting at any rate.

    I’m guessing #2

  32. BlacqueJacque says:

    fifthcartel:
    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 6m

    Lowe to address media at 1030 today.

    Hmmmm, wonder if it’s anything?

    Better be his resignation.

  33. Koho says:

    I think the answer is some parts 2 and some parts 4.

    As a wise man once said: “ he’s too cute by half. “

    This team seems to have too many guys who bet on their own skill rather then commit to the simple things.

    The Oilers get outworked most of the time, and the only way that’s ever going to change is if we fill the holes with guys who keep their legs moving, and always apply pressure.

    I like Sam. I think he’s gonna have a good career, but this team has skilled kids in surplus and the problems we face require a different type of player.

    I’d be in favor of sending him out in exchange for a strong defensive C, and a bonafide energy player.

    Something like Gagner + for Dubinsky and Anisimov.

    That would create a hole at 2C, but I think if they cleaned out the bottom six and paid to upgrade it we’d be in business. Add Boyd Gordon and Brad Boyes and all of a sudden we’d be in good shape up front with plenty of centre depth and an older Yak to make up for lost offence.

    Hall RNH Eberle

    Pajarvi Horcoff Yakupov

    Anisimov Gordon Hemsky

    Harti Dubinsky Boyes

    Hemsky would still be a square peg but I think he’s worth keeping. Who knows, maybe he clicks with someone new.

  34. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy: I’m trying to think of why Lowe would call a presser.

    I can only think of 4 reasons

    1) Fire Tambo
    2) Show support of Tambo and call the dogs off
    3) Announce an addition to the management team
    4) Announce MacT’s cancer is back and that he is taking time off to fight it

    Should be interesting at any rate.

    forget 1 through 3, I hope it’s not 4. some things are way more important than winning hockey games.

    Since mr. happy mentioned it the other day, I’ve had an irrational fear that they will change the Oiler colors and teal will be involved somehow. I sure hope it isn’t that…

    mind you changing the colors or uniform in anyway would be one way to distract everyone radically from the issue at hand. odd thing to do with 7 games left mind you.

  35. FrankenOil says:

    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 30s
    Tambelinni has been fired by Oilers. Confirmed.

  36. Woodguy says:

    Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 1m
    Tambelinni has been fired by Oilers. Confirmed.
    Expand

  37. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    and Lowe stays?

    I guess we can test the hypothesis on who was running the ship this summer then.

  38. RickDeckard says:

    There is 50% of a god!

  39. fuzzy muppet says:

    So who will be the newest scapegoat??

  40. regwald says:

    Bob McKenzie ‏@TSNBobMcKenzie 1m

    Hearing Craig MacTavish is new EDM GM and Scott Howson will be taking over MacTavish’s role. As per @TSNRyanRishaug, EDM fires Tambellini.

  41. Clarkenstein says:

    Lowe will stay and MacT takes over. Nothing changes.

  42. bookje says:

    Steve Tambellini commemorative GM pins – special discounts today only – buy some for your friends!

  43. sliderule says:

    The seating is going to be changed on the Titanic probably before the draft.

    Who gets it Howson MacT or Lowe?

  44. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Clarkenstein:
    Lowe will stay and MacT takes over. Nothing changes.

    damn nazis!

  45. bookje says:

    The reality is that none of us know who was in charge of what with this team. We all like to guess and all have our ‘insights’ and inside information.

    With Tambellini fired and Craig Mac to take over (or whatever happens), let’s all hope that Steve Tambellini was running this thing almost on his own, otherwise we are screwed.

    On that front, my own personal opinion was that ST had more power than most commentators thought. Hopefully I was correct.

    At least we know that the mandate for this year was the Playoffs.

  46. LoDog says:

    Scapegoatallini?

    Lowe is still here so not much of a change. And MacT to be GM? Same old.

  47. Woodguy says:

    Bob McKenzie ‏@TSNBobMcKenzie 6m
    Hearing Craig MacTavish is new EDM GM and Scott Howson will be taking over MacTavish’s role. As per @TSNRyanRishaug, EDM fires Tambellini.

  48. goldenchild says:

    No more Shambellini- The season is officially a success

  49. bookje says:

    If the rumours are true, I certainly hope that MacT is as smart as some people think he is.

    At the very least, press conferences with the GM are going to be more interesting than they have been for a while.

  50. Woodguy says:

    When I suggested over a year ago that MacT would be the next GM of the Oilers, I was jeered by almost everyone.

    *pats self on back*

    LT, where is that thread?

  51. Koho says:

    Happy Happy Joy Joy!

  52. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    So… what are we to make of the timing on that Jones article now?

    If he was fired after the season quietly there would be some plausible deniability…

    Right now, it looks a lot more like an organization and its media wing colluding to maintain their partnership.

  53. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy,

    We jeered because we didn’t want to believe the Oilers are that stupid.

  54. slopitch says:

    The Oilers have to move Gagner this offseason. You cant afford to pay a guy 5 million/year when he’s bleeding chances. Especially when the offensive minutes would be more effectively used by the kids.

  55. CrazyCoach says:

    Woodguy we all know you got that tip from me. LOL

    Seriously, I do remember you saying that and I thought then you were crazy. Guess you called it.

    So once again, Kevin Lowe buys himself a little more time and will probably have Katz over to his house to watch, “The Boys on the Bus” once again. That alone buys KLowe another year.

    I’m still disgusted by Saturday nights effort or lack thereof. I was sitting there remarking that if I was RK, I would have walked into that dressing room and announced that there would be an 8AM skate the next day, followed by a 2PM skate, and then a 6PM. There is absolutely no excuse for that pathetic effort, ever.

  56. russ99 says:

    Nice. Bout time.

    I’m hopeful that MacT will not be as much of a puppet, since he seems to have more pull in the org than Tambellini ever would as one of the Boys on the Bus.

    I’d be very interested to see if Lowe steps back after the season. Not a fan of Howson having more responsibility.

    Now let’s do something about pro scouting.

  57. Traktor says:

    A lot of MacT fans out there but nothing changes with this hire.

    So depressing.

    I actually think MacT could be a good GM with another team but with the Oilers its basically just recycling the same old.

    Fuck.

  58. LMHF#1 says:

    Please tell me he’s interim so that Jim Nill can finish out the Red Wings season and we go from there….right?

    Don’t get me wrong, very glad Tambellini is gone, but I’m not exactly on the MacTavish booster bus.

  59. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Staples thinks Jones got a tip:

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/04/15/edmonton-oilers-hired-craig-mactavish-as-new-general-manager-fire-steve-tambellini/

    The knives were clearly out for Edmonton Oilers GM Steve Tambellini, as seen when Terry Jones wrote on Sunday that Tambellini should be let go. One would have to imagine that Jones was in the know when he wrote that one.

  60. Woodguy says:

    Listening to 1260 and the callers and MSM writers are all saying that MacT taking over and Lowe staying is bad.

    Meet the new boss, same as the old boss.

    Also,

    Everyone pissed that he wasn’t fired before the deadline.

    Lowe’s a beauty.

  61. Bar_Qu says:

    I’m curiously detached about the firing, despite joining the call for it the last three years. Dunno, maybe as a fan I’m numb or maybe I don’t know that it will make a huge difference with Lowe still in place.

    I guess I just need to wait and see what the summer brings before I get hopeful things will improve – the proof in the pudding and all that.

    Jobs for MacTasGM (MTGM):
    1. Lose Petrell, Jones, Whitney, Eager, Hordichuk, Smithson(maybe)
    2. Don’t resign NK/find back-up goalie (hello Ray Emery)
    3. Land Grabbo from TO (preferrably in exchange for one of the guys on my first line)
    4. Steal a top 4 D
    5. Trade Gagner for something equivalent, but better in own zone

    If 3 or 4 of those things happen, then I will be optimistic about this change.

  62. leadfarmer says:

    Cmon, nothing changes. Fire them all. At least pretend to go look for a GM outside the ol’boys club. for a couple days.

  63. Woodguy says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Woodguy,

    We jeered because we didn’t want to believe the Oilers are that stupid.

    I never stated that it would be my preference.

    I stated it because its was the next logical step for an organization owned by Katz, who let’s his very good friends Lowe and MacT run.

    Its all about relationships, not cold hard business.

  64. FrankenOil says:

    I’ll say this, at least the hire is someone we have evidence of that Lowe listens to/respects his evaluations. They have a history of playing well with each other and understanding each other’s vision. I honestly think macT may be the one person within the organization who can go into Lowe’s office and tell him what needs to be done and what he is going to do about it and Lowe will let him do it. I’m not sure that was ever the case with Tambo.

  65. snipes67 says:

    Tambellini fired? YEA!!

  66. gcw_rocks says:

    Woodguy,

    I don’t think the jeering was for your prophetic abilities. The jeering was for letting us know a year in advance that there was no hope of real change in this organization.

    Oiler fans are well and truly fucked. This move means Katz has basically signed on for 3-5 more years of the Lowe regime before he will consider a house cleaning. What a total fucking embarrassment.

  67. Traktor says:

    Tambellini fires MacT.
    MacT replaces Tambellini
    Howson back after being fired by smart people in Columbus

    This organization is such a fucking joke.

    Seriously. This has nothing to do with liking or not liking MacTavish.

    OLD BOYS CLUB

  68. gcw_rocks says:

    Bar_Qu,

    The move, I think, is to approach Uncle Lou with a Gagner for Larsson trade. Lou has learned he needs to replace Parise and free agency and this draft isn’t going to do it for him. Gagner would be a big step for him and the Oilers get a defender on the same growth curve as the core.

  69. rich says:

    @ Woodguy: Thank you for all the hard work on the numbers for Gagner. To see how he performs with different forward and d-pairs says a lot this season over last.

    It does tell me as well that some of this could be the entire line understanding the coache’s system – not just Gagner. Certainly there is only 1 forward line on the team that grasps it (4-93-14). Now the question for the coach is do you continue to run with a system that you either don’t have the horses to run/don’t grasp or do you make adjustments?

    Also, you can fire one (Tambellini), but if Lowe is still the guy calling the shots, we’re still just re-arranging the deck chairs on the titanic.

  70. GordM says:

    Would have preferred Lowe out ask well but I get it…Katz’ pal. Also would have preferred Jim Nill.

    But hey….anything to replace Mr. Dithers is a positive. I suspect MacT will bring a far more definitive position to the GM chair. Curious how well his year coaching in the AHL benefits him when making moves to fill out our 4th line.

    One thing is for sure…all the ladies in town will be happy the Silver Fox is in front of the cameras more going forward.

  71. bookje says:

    Of course Jones got a ‘tip’. That is pretty standard in politics, hockey, etc. Now Jones will write an article about how Tambellini was REALLY in charge and Lowe and MacT will be different. Next time, Jones gets a tip again. His bosses say ‘well done’ because they broke the story.

    That is not unexpected at all.

    The problem is that sometimes Jones (Staffer, etc.) dont get a tip and still guess at things. So, we can assume that some of the things these guys say is insider information, but other stuff is just guessing. We should not assume that everything they say is accurate.

  72. slopitch says:

    Real good call on MacT WG (I wont bring up JJ ;))

  73. rickithebear says:

    The analysis of any game is attack and defend.
    Waves of attack from change of pocession.
    pretty simple:
    1. were you responsible for pocession change in active play (line change after (LOP)( yes or no)
    2. location of pocession change ( ozone, neutral zone, Dzone)
    3. type of initial attack (phase 1)
    Even,
    opposition outnumbered;
    Defence outnumbered
    4. 2nd Phase, and 3rd phase retrieval after a puck directed at net or corner. (dump in)
    5. Dzone or O zone draws.

    My point:
    there will be a clear expected average corsi number for each situation
    pocession lost – zone of loss – man situation of attack – Corsi/attack
    Example:
    yes – Ozone – oppostion advantage – corsi/attack
    There are 2 * 3 * 3 = 18 types of 1st phase attack a player can face.

    At the most basic level.
    Corsi is a measure of team.
    Corsi/Attack is a primitive start to measuring the 5 man units ability to defend.

    The same comcept can be aplied to attack.

    I would lay huge odds that tough comp tough dzone draw players see alot of ;
    line changes with the other teams best in pocession in there ozone ready to attack.
    and dump and change after they have defended. that attack wave.

    I suspect that certian forwards are subjected to a high count of d draws with a high corsi by the probability of pocession.

    I suspect those same forwards may change on the fly for another forward for most of the extra d zone draws.
    My guess is that these individuals have pretty bad Corsi’s.

  74. supernova says:

    Woodguy,

    Woodguy,

    look at my post from yesterday’s thread here on Lowetide.

    Not saying its the right move, but very predictable.

    Unless there is improvement this is Lowe’s last hire. it was always going to be MacT.

  75. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Tank is over. Expect the ship to be righted, as the scapegoat has been tossed overboard to the sharks.

    Kevin Lowe pulls the puppet strings like few others…

  76. supernova says:

    I would expect a big move in the summer.

    Something that stamps MacT as the GM.

    either a Big tough Player as a Free Agent Signing, thinking Clarkson if he is available. (which will be an overpay in either term or term and dollars)

    MacT will also make a big trade. Something like a Yandle or a Del Zotto.

    Lowe and MacT will work fervently on these as it will show a “changing of the guard”

  77. VanOil says:

    LT this is an excellent blog post generating very good responses. Before I stand on the shoulders of giants to try to answer your question I will first dispel some outlining notions:

    In the wake of a dispirited team effort the entire teams professionalism/drive has come into question. Gagner has worked hard over the 6 years he has been a pro. The perceived weakness of his game; size, skating and defensive position have all been addressed. Gagner has bulked up, worked hard on his skating and proven him self on the PK. At nearly 200lbs he is no giant but you do not see him pushed of the puck. His skating is not going to win awards but he has not looked foolish keeping up with Paajarvi and Hemsky who can skate like the wind. As for the PK he is at least Petrell’s equal in reliability and it is the only possible reason Petrell is in the NHL at all. So he seems to be a good Pro that works hard on his game.

    So what is wrong? Why aren’t we winning games with him?

    4)The trio can’t deliver Krueger’s gameplan with authority. Tactics

    If this tactical fault lies with the coach player or line mates I am unsure. Probably all three for the execution to be this poor. With a small pass given for lack of practice time this year.

    Above WG, Romulus Apotheosis have ably pointed out using Dellow’s, Parkatti’s and there own work that it is primarily a Shots Against problem. SF and points are very respectable numbers. This leads me to believe the primary spot for the required improvement in Gagner’s game can be found, as Romulus Apotheosis pointed out, in Bruce McCurdy’s zone exit work.

    I will not rehash the numbers as they have already done it better than I could. I will draw an analogy with the tactics of another sport. Football, the three top leagues in the world are the Italian Series A, the Spanish La Liga and the English Premiership. The 3 leagues are known for very different tactics.

    The Italian play a stifling trap game that is all about defense first, it is painful to watch but the results are excellent even when executed by low skill players. Think Phoenix or the old NJ teams if you give them a lead you a dead.

    The Spanish play a ball possession game, utilizing short quick passes. This is truly the beautiful game but sometimes can look like they are not attacking at all, it does require skill and training. Watch either of the two Spanish Clubs in there next Champions League matches. They will have possession of the ball significantly more than the other team. In football you don’t need a fancy stat like Corsi as a proxy for possession, they just out right measure possession. The other team can not score or shoot if they do not touch the ball. Think Detroit at there best and Chicago now. Short ‘puck support’ passes are the key, much as the are in other sports like Rugby and Ultimate Frisbee.

    This brings us to the Premiership. Outside the top teams who’s NY Yankee style payrolls allow them to play a Spanish style game. Most teams play what they call ‘Route One Football”. It is all fast breaks and attack. It is very exciting to watch but a dismal failure to win with if you are up against Italian or Spanish style clubs. Basically on defense you kick the ball into the stands to prevent an attack, on offense you kick the ball as hard as you can down the field where hopefully your big man will be able to knock the ball down to one of your other attacking players in full flight. This is how Gagner’s line is playing hockey. It is very exciting, requires tremendous fitness but is tactically poor.

    The saddest thing is Gagner and his line mates have the skill to execute a puck support, possession style game on both ends of the rink. They need more short crisp passes and be in position to make and receive them. The Sedin sisters are the best in the league at this, yes they are psychic, but most of there passes in either zone are 10ft long.

    It is hard to discern the true nature of RK’s system as the top line with there sublime skill play a puck possession game, which they modeled on the Sedin’s during there OKC time. The bottom lines play a permanent PK style, so bad that the puck must be square, it is so horrid it drives us all to distraction. With work and possibly guidance from coaches other than Smith and Buckburger, who were square puck players themselves, the Gagner line could improve.

    Gagner has shown the professionalism to work on the parts of his game that are the weakest. He has the skill to play the beautiful game. Are he and the coaching staff able to identify this problem and set about fixing it? Even if they just executed this on zone exits there would be a significant improvement. Are his line mates willing to go on this journey with him? Or our we going to watch Gagner go to a great puck possession team like Chicago, learn this tactical awareness, and come back and dominate us? My guess is management, who ever they maybe, feel it is a Coke Machine that will fix the problem. They are wrong it is short passes executed by players with the skill and responsibility to make them.

  78. TheseColoursDontRun says:

    Is this the end of “cap guru” Ricky Olczyk?

  79. rickithebear says:

    So about Gagner:
    Just a Guess based on attack waves.

    Hall, RNH, Eberle, MP are shown to face 1st comp. with zone start 51 – 54%

    But Gagner, Hemsky, Yakupov are shown to have a comp value around lower 1st to upper 2nd with even zone start.

    Shawn Horcoff faces lower 2nd comp with a 42% zone start.
    Smyth (41.5%) and Belanger(33%) face lower 3rd comp

    So:
    Hall, RNH, Eberle face 1st comp in largely Ozone draws.
    Face 3rd comp in D zone roles.
    recieve a larger portion of line changes with our Ozone control.

    Gagner, hemsky, Yakupov, 1st comp in neutral and d zone situations, with 2nd unit ozone draws and a more neutral line change.

    Horcoff, Smyth, Belanger.start alot of 2nd, 3rd comp d zone, and line changes with opposition ozone control.

    But just guessing based on numbers.

  80. spoiler says:

    LT,

    Inspired writing… Your article this morning gave me some real chuckles. We may not always agree on things, but you are always a pleasure to read.

    I’ve been harping on the top6 not playing well enough to win games this year, and really the biggest problem there has been the second triad… L2… along with the Schultz pairing.

    I think there may be something in what Bookje is saying in that this was a contract year for Gagner and he has an incentive to cheat for offense. He can be brilliant in the Ozone, but even then , we see him take that top of the circle slapper too many times when he has other options.

    In his own end, besides the tendency to bolt the zone too early, that has been commented on here and ad infinitum on past threads., the biggest issue to my eye has been a willingness to cover for his teammates.

    He seems too locked into to what he thinks his coverage is supposed to be.. rather than reacting to the play on the ice and coming deeper in the slot to help his Dmen when they get caught out of position by a bad boounce or a bad read or a pick or whatever. Part of this is cheating for offense (if I come down low to help, I can’t fly the zone as well), part of it might be “well that’s not my job”, and part of it might be his own ability/knowledge to make defensive reads.

  81. striatic says:

    if Gagner goes, who is going to play second line Centre?

    i think any debate over Gagner’s future with the Oilers needs to include discussion of who will replace his minutes.

  82. VanOil says:

    Jordan,

    I wish I had read your post first. You nailed as far as I am concerned.

  83. Woodguy says:

    rich:
    @ Woodguy: Thank you for all the hard work on the numbers for Gagner.To see how he performs with different forward and d-pairs says a lot this season over last.

    It does tell me as well that some of this could be the entire line understanding the coache’s system – not just Gagner.Certainly there is only 1 forward line on the team that grasps it (4-93-14).Now the question for the coach is do you continue to run with a system that you either don’t have the horses to run/don’t grasp or do you make adjustments?

    Also, you can fire one (Tambellini), but if Lowe is still the guy calling the shots, we’re still just re-arranging the deck chairs on the titanic.

    Thanks.

    Kinda got lost in the news…..

  84. striatic says:

    This presser just got interesting.

  85. TheseColoursDontRun says:

    striatic,

    Lowe got a little fired up there.

    I wonder if there will be any back-lash from the “Milan Lucic type player” comment. Thats sounds close to tampering.

  86. striatic says:

    TheseColoursDontRun: Lowe got a little fired up there.

    he has 6 rings.

    and paying customers.

  87. CrazyCoach says:

    Meet the new boss
    Same as the old boss

  88. TheOtherJohn says:

    bookje: If the rumours are true, I certainly hope that MacT is as smart as some people think he is. At the very least, press conferences with the GM are going to be more interesting than they have been for a while.

    Bookje

    Wish MacT all luck in the world!!! Sincerely. But when he said that after all the success Oilers had in late 80′s there is a residual period where it takes awhile to rer=tool or some such??? thats 20 years ago. Second stupidest thing said at the presser. 1st being KLowe’s 6 rings Who give a F k!!!

  89. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy,

    I know, I’m just saying it was – at least on my part – wishful thinking. Like “no way they’ll promote MacT, they’re not that stupid”.

  90. FastOil says:

    This is so Oilers, some things never change.

    Although I expected Tambellini to be the fall guy this year, this went down more coldly than I thought it would. Figured for sure he’d be shuffled somewhere else, but I guess there are only so many managers and coaches a team can have, and Horcoff needs a spot soon.

    “MacTavish, who stepped down as head coach of the Oilers four years ago to the day” almost seems vindictive. And Lowe squarely placing blame on Tambellini, like it had nothing to do with him, at all.

    “We’re poised for greatness and our fans understand that,” said Lowe. Poise, too funny.

    Unless Tambellini says something we’ll never know if he had autonomy or Lowe is just buying time by throwing him under the bus. Or who brought “poise” into the team mantra. I haven’t seen the presser, but from what is being posted it sounds like it went as it usually does, slightly classless.

    I hope MacT does a lot better than what has gone on. I also hope somehow he can bring an end to the embarrassing way the org conducts itself. Oh ya, Penner. Hopefully they taught him about that and how it’s usually not a good thing at school.

  91. dessert1111 says:

    This is an old topic now with the news today, but wanted to share my Gagner observations:

    Gagner has a higher than normal shooting percentage, and by eye he has gotten 2nd assists and empty net goals more than once. In a shortened season, an especially in a span of 25 games, which is where most his points came from, it’s not as abnormal as we might first think that he is having a better PPG this year.

    He wants a big contract and understands that points are the single more important thing in getting more $$. Cheating for offense a bit, makes sense.

    The biggest thing? His poor corsi number seems indicative of what I see — a lot of shooting opportunities not taken in favour of a pass. Very often these extra passes to get a wide open net leads to a turnover in the offensive zone and no shot being taken, and when the other team has possession so much more often than Gagner’s line has possession the opposing team is going to take more shots.

    I think Gagner’s focus is on offense, and he and his linemates/the entire team is guilty of not shooting enough and giving up the puck too much, partially explaining these numbers. Gagner is also not particularly adept at winning puck-scrums, which also leads to opposition possession.

    Gagner is pretty good at getting points, but the rest of his game leaves a lot to be desired. I’m not so sure that this is any difference than in previous years, except that perhaps his role is more defined as an offensive player and that’s where his focus is, especially considering he wants a nice contract.

    I don’t think Gagner has changed much as a player or this represents a breakout or backwards year, but I do think it’s going to mean he’s going to command more money than before and that it makes the decision of whether to retain him or trade him easier, since his value is higher than before to other teams. Trade him this offseason for someone who offers a different, more complementary element to the Oilers, before his return worsens.

  92. dangilitis says:

    Woodguy,

    “The two key areas was how often 89/83 got 0 CF/shift and 2 CF/shit compared to 14/93.”

    Freudian slip?

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