OPTIONS RE-SET (DEFENSE)

Oiler fans this morning are experiencing a lot of things: anticipation, hope, fear, anxiety, foreboding. Mostly though, they just want to be assured that this entire thing is headed in a good direction. For awhile now–maybe a week or two–we’ve kind of been getting an idea that MacT is going to blow this thing up.

I think it’s going to be the defense. It makes complete sense: Edmonton already has their offensive impact players–three first rounders, a quality RW in Eberle and a very good C in Sam Gagner. That’s 5 impressive F options, and we know that if the club throws a complementary player on the Nuge-Eberle line that player is going to score if he’s any damn good at all. We’re entering the era where pairs (Nuge-Ebs, Gagner-Hall, ???-Yak) may end up being the order of the day. If they can find options under $2M for the other three spots, maybe we’ll be looking at the unicorn offense (3 scoring lines) we’ve been reading about since I was in my 20′s.

DEFENSE (SIGNED OR RFA)

LD RD
SMID PETRY
N SCHULTZ J SCHULTZ
ANTON BELOV POTTER
PECKHAM KLEFBOM
MARINCIN FEDUN

This is the problem, it’s been the problem since G7 SCF 2006. We can talk about center (and we did) and goaltending (and we will) but this group isn’t good enough by plenty. If the Oilers are going to get better–really get better–they are going to need a top pairing defender and he’s going to cost plenty in assets and money.

  • Smid-Petry would be a solid 2nd pairing.
  • The Schultz twins would be a good 3rd pairing.

Let’s go to the Vollman Sledgehammer and blow our brains out on a top defender.

EASTERN CONFERENCE VOLLMAN SLEDGEHAMMER

Interesting list, it gives us some less than ridiculous options like Sekera in Buffalo and Gunnarson in Toronto. The problem is those guys aren’t going anywhere, so we’re left with the expensive fellows (Phaneuf, Bogosian) who also are unlikely to move. Tough stuff this acquiring franchise defensemen. I’m also going to include Adam Larsson on the list.

WESTERN CONFERENCE VOLLMAN SLEDGEHAMMER

I’m intrigued by several names here: OEL, Zbynek Michalek, Pietrangelo, Tyutin, Nikitin, hell there’s some nice things here. I’d love to hear your opinion, but I’m going to assume the Oilers can find a way to acquire Tyutin from the Jackets. I’m not sure what EDM would have to give up, but Columbus does have more blue than forwards and if there’s a Howson connection maybe that can make things work. CBJ has no need for draft picks and that’s for sure.

LD RD
FEDOR TYUTIN JEFF PETRY
LADISLAV SMID JUSTIN SCHULTZ
NICK SCHULTZ ANTON BELOV
OSCAR KLEFBOM COREY POTTER
MARTIN MARINCIN TAYLOR FEDUN

Two questions: is that enough? Adding Tyutin and Belov to the top 6 should improve things, but is there a need to go get Sekera too? Thoughts?

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81 Responses to "OPTIONS RE-SET (DEFENSE)"

  1. justDOit says:

    LT: With all your interwebs troubles this morning, I think you forgot the “So what does it all mean?” section and accompanying photo.

    http://www.eforu.com/cards/pictures/ingridkavelaars/16.jpg

    You’re welcome.

  2. sysadmin says:

    Awesome! btw, I’m Sysadmin for a little while until I get my normal log in back.

  3. Beaker says:

    Tyutin would be an awesome addition but I still think they need another guy who could work as a top 4 type. I basically want Klefbom pushed down the roster to get significant AHL time, Justin Schultz as a 3rd pair 1PP guy. Basically if you could get a guy to be an upgrade on Nick Schultz and to pair with Smid or Tyutin we’d be golden.

    Something like:

    Tyutin – Petry
    Smid – __________
    Belov – Justin Schultz
    Potter
    Klefbom

  4. mumbai max says:

    I would go for two top 4. The more the merrier. Injuries will come and we want Klefbom and Marincin to be eased in, not thrown in over their head. There are bound to be some interesting veteran D buyout victims that could be signed on modest one or two year deals. Patience is a virtue. Go hard for one early, and wait in the weeds for the second one. p.s. we may be under estimating Belov, of course it is impossible to know. Belov plus two top 4 would be a job well done.

  5. Beaker says:

    Beaker:
    Tyutin would be an awesome addition but I still think they need another guy who could work as a top 4 type.I basically want Klefbom pushed down the roster to get significant AHL time, Justin Schultz as a 3rd pair 1PP guy. Basically if you could get a guy to be an upgrade on Nick Schultz and to pair with Smid or Tyutinwe’d be golden.

    Something like:

    Tyutin – Petry
    Smid – __________
    Belov – Justin Schultz
    Potter
    Klefbom

    I’d also like to add that the only reason N Schultz is going out in that scenario is that i think hes wasted as a #7 and has value enough to bring back another useful piece Either to help fill that D spot or on forward..

  6. TheOtherJohn says:

    We aint in the game for OEL or Bogosian unless we are prepared to give up a core asset. Also how do we know where Belov fits until we see him play in the NHL?

  7. sysadmin says:

    Beaker: It’s funny, Nick Schultz hasn’t impressed a lot of people I talk to–maybe he’ll exit this summer.

  8. Jordan says:

    Hemsky, Omark & 2013 2nd (37 or 56) for Tyutin & 2013 1st (14)

    Would Rajala have more value than the 2013 2nd? Would they rather have two midget scorers?

    In all honesty, I think Hemsky should get you Tyutin almost 1 -1, so the basically, its a question of whether there’s enough interest in him to pull their 1st out as well.

    Something tells me if they want into the top 4 or 5, it would be much easier to get there with the 7th & 14th.

  9. Captain Obvious says:

    If you add the pieces together of this reset you get a very good team.

    Lowetide has basically put together my dream offseason, adding MacArthur, Sobotka*, Stalberg, Gordon, and Tyutin, while dropping Horcoff and Hemsky, fits under the cap, if only barely and using up some bonus cushion.

    The problem is it requires the free agents you want choosing to sign with you,getting Tyutin/Nikitin and Sobotka for prospects/draft picks, and trading Horcoff and Hemsky without keeping salary. I don’t see how that happens but if it does sign me up.

    *On the Sobotka/Spaling options, Sobotka has much higher offensive upside. He was a pt/game player in the AHL at 20 and 21. He’d be a real steal but I don’t see why St. Louis would trade him.

    Nikitin/Tyutin is a more reasonable goal. They are both very underrated with good numbers two straight years.

    What I’d like to hear from lowetide how the Oilers could get these guys. The #7 pick is too muchand anything else the Oilers have is too little. Maybe Hemksy and Marincin gets you Tyutin, but how are you going to get Sobotka?

    Finally, if possible I’d like to see Lander, Haartikainen, and Klefbom start in the AHL if only because it adds to the number of functional roster spots the OIlers have at their disposal.

  10. oilersfan says:

    Hi Lowetide, just turned on the radio and you weren’t there. Have you changed to 3 times a week?

  11. sysadmin says:

    Captain Obvious: My goal was to re-set with three posts (goalie on the way if MacT would stop making news!) and then reach a board concensus. Which is what’s happening–MacArthur is a new add from my list of F’s (Gordon, Sobotka, Stalberg) but one we can probably make room for depending on cost.

    Once we get all the targets (Tyutin, another D? Goalie) then we can discuss costs. FA $, draft picks now and the future and some prospects are the main items, but I do think Hemsky has value.

  12. Lowetide says:

    oilersfan:
    Hi Lowetide, just turned on the radio and you weren’t there. Have you changed to 3 times a week?

    lol. No, when you’re old like me and the company you work for is fair and equitable there’s about 20 weekdays to burn off each year. So, I’m off today, a week in July and two weeks in August.

    Old people are a drag on productivity.

  13. leadfarmer says:

    Jordan,

    That package wouldnt get you the 1st round pick or Tyutin alone, let alone together. Plus I cant see Omark’s value being higher than a conditional 5th

  14. SoxandOil says:

    MacT to announce at presser that he will be the new Head Coach/GM/4th line C.

  15. Bag of Pucks says:

    Late to the party on the Krueger/Eakins but wanted to offer a couple viewpoints I hadn’t seen mentioned much over the weekend.

    1) This team is badly in name of better PR/image handling. Whether this was the right or wrong move for the team is eminently debatable, but I don’t think anyone can debate that this could’ve been handled in a far more professional, polished and humane way. Firing someone in 5 minutes over a regularly scheduled Skype call? Brutal. To be fair, this starts at the top as Katz is seemingly oblivious to the importance of proper PR and managing public perception.

    2) It seems a common thread to those disappointed with Krueger’s dismissal to cite his ‘intelligence’ as the reason why. I think it’s important to remember that intelligence is only one of the traits that a successful coach (or manager/leader/person) needs to have, and having a big brain in and of itself doesn’t guarantee success. Secondly, I think Krueger’s greatest strengths are in fact his confidence and eloquence, two attributes that are very effective in creating the perception of intelligence. When applied in a competitive environment like this however, true intelligence should create competitive advantage which thus breeds RESULTS.

    From personal experience, I’ve worked with a lot of extremely effective execs in my day, and unfortunately a far few ineffective ones as well. And what I’ve noticed is that very rarely do people cook with the same recipes. I’ve seen managers with blunt, even caustic personalities succeed because of superlative domain knowledge and work ethic. I’ve seen meek managers excel because they’ve provided tools and systems that employees immediately gravitate to and adopt. I’ve also seen MANY people friendly managers with strong motivational skills fail because they lack attention to detail in execution or because they fail to adapt and evolve their methods to suit the skills of their team(s).

    I don’t know what Krueger’s relative strengths and weaknesses are, but I do know, if you want to win the Cup, you need a SUPERIOR coach. And by and large, superior coaches (much like superior execs) don’t struggle out of the gate to generate results. Scotty Bowman, Glen Sather, Ken Hitchock, Mike Babcock. These lads hit the ground running because successful people innately know what needs to be done and they don’t waste a lot of time with missteps.

    I don’t want to kick Krueger’s when he’s down, but A) he went along with having Bucky and Smith as his associates and not replacing himself B) he admits he never saw his firing coming. Do either of those sound like the actions of a highly intelligent man?

    Like Krueger a lot. He will learn from this and be better for it. But this team has an amazing opportunity with this nucleus and Krueger’s ‘positivity at all costs’ approach was simply not generating the results. In addition to system play, gameplanning, line matching, etc., let’s hope Eakins understands the value of the carrot AND the stick. Better days ahead.

  16. Mr DeBakey says:

    My idea is to trade Hemsky for a D whom goes UFA the same day as him.
    Perhaps as part of a package.
    Here are 26 guys, UFA after next season, who played at least 15 minutes at 5v5 this past season,
    with their current team, age & Cap Hit:

    Bouwmeester, Jay » – STL – 29 – $6,680,000
    Boyle, Dan » – SJS – 36 – $6,666,667
    Phaneuf, Dion » – TOR – 28 – $6,500,000
    Markov, Andrei » – MTL – 34 – $5,750,000
    Pitkanen, Joni » – CAR – 29 – $4,500,000
    Kuba, Filip » – FLA – 36 – $4,000,000
    Gilbert, Tom » – MIN – 30 – $4,000,000
    Quincey, Kyle » – DET – 27 – $3,775,000
    Orpik, Brooks » – PIT – 32 – $3,750,000
    Salo, Sami » – TBL – 38 – $3,750,000
    Letang, Kris » – PIT – 26 – $3,500,000
    Hjalmarsson, Niklas » – CHI – 26 – $3,500,000
    Tallinder, Henrik » – NJD – 34 – $3,375,000
    Girardi, Dan » – NYR – 29 – $3,325,000
    Robidas, Stephane » – DAL – 36 – $3,300,000
    Seidenberg, Dennis » – BOS – 31 – $3,250,000
    Ericsson, Jonathan » – DET – 29 – $3,250,000
    Phillips, Chris » – OTT – 35 – $3,083,333
    Morris, Derek » – PHX – 34 – $2,750,000
    Niskanen, Matt » – PIT – 26 – $2,300,000
    Zanon, Greg » – COL – 33 – $2,250,000
    Nikitin, Nikita » – CLB – 26 – $2,150,000

  17. justDOit says:

    Perfect timing on a defense reset article, as Darren Dreger has this to twit:

    @DarrenDreger: Oilers remain keenly interested in D-man Paul Ranger. Ranger loved playing for Dallas Eakins and Eakins is a huge fan of Ranger….

    And this before Eakins is officially recognized by the Oilers.

  18. Wolfie says:

    Dreger is saying the Oilers have interest in Paul Ranger… Cue Gene with the Lone Ranger puns.

  19. Jordan says:

    leadfarmer:
    Jordan,

    That package wouldnt get you the 1st round pick or Tyutin alone, let alone together.Plus I cant see Omark’s value being higher than a conditional 5th

    I’m not convinced. The Jackets biggest team need right now is offensive creativity. They have a boatload of defensemen, prospect players, and what they need are NHL calibre offensive talents. Both Omark and Hemsky are those talents, one of which would be available on a very affordable contract.

    You say Omark’s value is a conditional 5th. I say it depends which team you’re talking about. Now, I understand that you may not be ranking the value of Hemsky very highly right now, and that’s fine. I also expect that you, like everyone else, is over-valuing the 2013 1st.

    For all I care, you could make the same pitch for a 2014 1st, or 2014 2nd. Hell, maybe it’s more likely to happen during free agency, after all the skill players have decided to play elsewhere, and CBJ have nearly the same roster as last year. And I expect that’s a frightening prospect, and that if they needed to give up Tyutin to acquire some of the talent they need, I think it’s a reasonable way for them to get it.

  20. VOR says:

    LT,

    I am probably blind but I can’t find either Christian Ehrhoff or Michael Stone on these charts.

  21. dangilitis says:

    I am really hoping they can land Tyutin, because that is a great option and as Willis showed, the 2 teams are best aligned to swap. But could they use Hemsky in order to do it? Or Horcs? The team is weak in both of those areas as per capgeek depth chart

    Option 1:
    Offering Hemsky to the club at 3 million for the next year (Oilers can afford 2 million hit for one year?) + Marincin for Tyutin? Saves CBJ 0.8 million with 2 useful parts coming back for 1.

    Option 2:
    Getting Tyutin off the books would leave a big hole for them on D even if Murray is ready to take the next step, so Hemsky at 3 million and N Schultz might also work, but I don’t see the CBJ taking on more salary in any deal (6.5 to CBJ and Edm gets Tyutin at 4.5).

    Option 3:
    Horcoff trades become complicated and I am not sure i have it right here, but his cap hit is 5.5 mil but his salary for his last 2 years are 4 and 3 million. If Oilers offered CBJ Horcs at 3 mil and 2 mil (eat 1 million in cap hit and salary x 2 yrs), would CBJ take 4.5 mil of the 5.5 mil cap hit for the last 2 years? That would be doable for the Oilers, and suddenly CBJ gets exactly what they need, someone to inflate their cap by 2 mil/season at a very affordable price of 2.5 mil/season. Problem is CBJ is likely not on Horcs list of teams to go to. MacT may need to tell him that if he wants to leave, that is the only game in town (of course Horcs could balk at that and tell him to use the amnesty buyout)…

    Option 4
    N Schultz + prospect/draft pick for Tyutin. Saves CBJ money, but as you say, they want forwards and it only works if they are okay taking an undersized prospect back in the minors (Rajala??)

    Trading any roster player other than Hemsky, Horcoff and N Schultz is not an option unless they can sign a better player or bring another better player through trade.

    As I have hinted many times, N Schultz off the books would be great (I don’t see him resigning, and he is too expensive for a 3rd pairing D) and Clitsome is the cheaper replacement to gun for as a UFA.

    My vision for building without subtracting too much:
    Hall, RNH, Eberle (15.775)
    MacArthur or Stalberg(3.5 or 2.5), Gagner(4.5-5), Yakupov, (3.775)
    MPS (1.5-2), Gordon (2), Boyes (2)
    Smyth (2.25), Kruger (1.5), Harti (0.75)
    Lander + Brown ( I guess)
    FORWARDS 38-40

    Tyutin, Petry (6.25)
    Smid, J Schultz (7.225)
    Clitsome (2), Belov (1.525), Klefbom (1.244), Potter (0.775)
    DEFENCE 19

    Dubnyk 3.5
    Kudobin 1.75
    GOALIE 5.25

    I think that is enough to get them in. If not, at least this closes the holes and opens the doors for bigger trades to upgrade parts.

    Capgeek says this is 61.1 mil + 9.5 mil in bonuses (not sure if that counts against the cap – if it does this would never work), + anything retained in a Horcoff/Hemsky trade

    Pushing everyone down the depth chart on D makes everyone else’s job a bit easier, J Schultz and Petry hopefully another year wiser, and Belov vs Klefbom is the big Q but I think one of them will be more than capable of 5-6 role before the dust settles.

    Subtractions: Horcoff and Hemsky (one llkely bought out, one eating salary in a trade), N Schultz, Belanger (bought out), Eager (minors), prospects/picks

  22. Lowetide says:

    VOR:
    LT,

    I am probably blind but I can’t find either Christian Ehrhoff or Michael Stone on these charts.

    I had to delete some of those guys for visual purposes (they were all on top of each other).

  23. LMHF#1 says:

    justDOit:
    Perfect timing on a defense reset article, as Darren Dreger has this to twit:

    @DarrenDreger: Oilers remain keenly interested in D-man Paul Ranger. Ranger loved playing for Dallas Eakins and Eakins is a huge fan of Ranger….

    And this before Eakins is officially recognized by the Oilers.

    Now that would be outstanding.

    If he’s got his head back on straight, the guy can really play.

  24. justDOit says:

    Lowetide,

    You’re back! Good to see. Did the NSA at least kiss you afterwards?

  25. OilLeak says:

    Mr DeBakey,

    The names that makes the most sense on that list(at least to me) are nikitin and niskanen. Both should be affordable options to re-sign.

  26. gd says:

    Mr DeBakey,

    Tallinder is a guy I have had my eye on. He played a major role in Sweden’s WH Championship and I would think he wouldn’t cost much in a trade. Robidas might be available now with Gonchar signed and I think Nikitin would be affordable as well.

    I think Streit is a definite stay away as this team can’t afford to have $5M+ tied up for the next four years on a non-elite Dman. My feeling is this team needs affordable, non long term upgrades to get them through the next couple of years so they don’t need to rush Klefbom et al, plus to ensure they have the cap space to go whale hunting in a year or two.

  27. russ99 says:

    Along with the obvious top-4 need, I’d love to see the Oilers get a tough D to replace Sutton and push the lesser defensemen down the depth chart. That would also give Klefbom at least a few months of needed AHL development time.

  28. VOR says:

    If you were able to sign Ranger and wanted say Tyutin you could then move Nick Schultz as part of the deal – so something like N. Schultz and Hemsky for Tyutin and Jenner (or one of CBJ first rd picks) might work. Ignoring Belov, Klefbom etc. Smid-Petry, Tyutin-Schultz, Ranger-Potter would certainly work for MacT’s stated preference for playing the transition game. Ranger before he fell off the cliff and left for personal reasons was absolutely brilliant against fore-check pressure. I really have no idea how he looked in the AHL but Eakins was his coach and thus probably has a good feel for whether or not Ranger is worth signing.

  29. Halfwise says:

    Frankly the way the past week has gone, this photo illustrates it for me…

    http://digilander.libero.it/guido_1953/pics/shado-3/shado-ufo-girls-moonbase-15.jpg

    Have the laws of physics been suspended in the trade world? I love the ideas posted in the replies above, but there is a hint of sci-fi to it all. Still, they look nice, and there are some great pairings…

  30. Woodguy says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    How do you handle the RK firing?

    Getting on a plane and flying 40 hours there and back and losing another day to acclimation during the two weeks leading up to the draft is a massive waste of resources, of which time is the most precious.

    Is easy to imagine MacT interviewing associate coach candidates, finding his guy and the guy not wanting to come unless it’s his show.

    He has to make the decision immediately because 2-4 other teams want your guy, and he picked you. So you do the deal.

    MacT makes the decision and moves fast because once anyone at Eakins’ agent’s office knows, it’s leaked (as we saw)

    Moving slow in this situation is not good management.

  31. Woodguy says:

    LT,

    I really like Gunnarsson from TOR.

    They have a lot of D and need some F, particularly C.

    I wonder if you can pry him loose with Gagner. You’d need more back from TOR, but it’s a start.

    It’s a bit of a pipe dream, but Carlyle didn’t play Gardenier much this year. Played him more in the playoffs, but if there is a disconnect between player and ocach there, Nonis might have to move him.

    Also,

    I really like Mr. DeBakey’s idea of Hemsky for a 1 year Dman. Some nice players on that list.

  32. pboy says:

    Woodguy: Bag of Pucks, How do you handle the RK firing?Getting on a plane and flying 40 hours there and back and losing another day to acclimation during the two weeks leading up to the draft is a massive waste of resources, of which time is the most precious.Is easy to imagine MacT interviewing associate coach candidates, finding his guy and the guy not wanting to come unless it’s his show. He has to make the decision immediately because 2-4 other teams want your guy, and he picked you. So you do the deal.MacT makes the decision and moves fast because once anyone at Eakins’ agent’s office knows, it’s leaked (as we saw)Moving slow in this situation is not good management.

    I don’t think it’s realistic for MacT to make that trip but Lowe or Howson would be decent surrogates. I think a face to face is mandatory in that situation.

  33. justDOit says:

    pboy: I don’t think it’s realistic for MacT to make that trip but Lowe or Howson would be decent surrogates. I think a face to face is mandatory in that situation.

    Considering the timing, there are many worse ways to fire a person: email, text message, or through the media. An Oiler GM finally does something right, and we have to nitpick it apart?

    RK will be fine, as I’m sure he’s being paid out and doesn’t have to resort to a service industry job to pay the rent.

  34. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy:
    LT,

    I really like Gunnarsson from TOR.

    They have a lot of D and need some F, particularly C.

    I wonder if you can pry him loose with Gagner. You’d need more back from TOR, but it’s a start.

    It’s a bit of a pipe dream, but Carlyle didn’t play Gardenier much this year. Played him more in the playoffs, but if there is a disconnect between player and ocach there, Nonis might have to move him.

    Also,

    I really like Mr. DeBakey’s idea of Hemsky for a 1 year Dman. Some nice players on that list.

    Good points. Dreger also posted the Oilers have interest in Paul Ranger. Gardiner’s a dream imo, I don’t think the Leafs deal him. They were very careful with him last year.

  35. pboy says:

    Ralph Krueger deserved better than to be relieved of his duties during a 5 minute computer chat. Gretz called New Jersey a Mickey Mouse organization back in the ’80s and a lot worse could be said about the Oiler’s over the last 15 years. Going by the presser where they announed MacT’s hiring and this info about how they let go Krueger, Senior Management has a long fucking way to go before they can even see respectability.

  36. dessert1111 says:

    I would do Hemsky and N Schultz for a guy like Tyutin straight up. If you get a prospect or pick back that’s bonus. This makes even more sense if you can sign a D like Ranger.

    Tyutin – Petry
    Smid – J Schultz
    Belov – Ranger
    Potter

    And you have Fedun as a call-up who can probably handle NHL spot duty right away in case of injuries, a guy in Klefbom who might be able to do that and more but can reasonably be expected to come on board by Christmas, and Marincin who could take cups of coffee in early 2014.

    I won’t bother mentioning Horcoff because he will only go to a contender so I have no idea what he could get the Oilers in return, even with eating salary. A pick? Prospect? Effective 3rd line RW that’s a clear upgrade on Jones?

  37. Young Oil says:

    Hi LT,
    First of all, long time reader, first time commenter, I’m a huge fan of this blog, thanks for doing it!

    About a week ago you mentioned the possibility of Kulikov+2nd OV for Yakupov. As much as I love Yakupov, I would do this trade in a second (assuming Colorado takes Jones). Kulikov would be a major upgrade on many of the D we have, and MacKinnon is definitely going to be a great player, probably lacking the offensive prowess of Yakupov, but will most likely flourish under Eakins and develop a good 2 way game, and become an ideal #2C.

    In addition to these moves, do you think these moves are plausible, and would benefit the team?
    1. One of Nichushkin/Monohan/Lindholm will be available at #7 OV. Draft him.
    2. Buy out Horcoff and Hemsky unless a deal can be made without taking back much salary.
    3. Sign Stalberg, Gordon, and possibly Ranger for a reasonable price.
    4. This is where I might come of as an idiot (even though most would say I am already for suggesting to trade Yakupov): Gagner+N. Schultz+2014 1st round pick+middling D prospect (Musil/Gernat) to CBJ for Dubinski, Nikitin, and Johansen. Hopefully that isn’t too farfetched!

    That would give us:
    RNH-Hall-Eberle
    Dubinski-Stalberg-Nichushkin/Monohan/Lindholm
    MacKinnon-Paajarvi-Hartikainen
    Gordon-Smyth-Brown
    Johansen/Lander/Rajala

    Smid-Petry
    Kulikov-J Schultz
    Belov-Nikitin
    Ranger/Potter/Klefbom

    I believe this lineup is an improvement, with much more depth than previous years. While there is a bit less depth on the wings, there is a new found depth at C and D. It gives Eakins a connection to a couple players (Stalberg, Ranger), Dubinski would be a great mentor to the young players, especially Nichushkin/Monohan/Lindholm and MacKinnon, and could move to the wing if needed, it allows the Belov-Nikitin connection to happen, and allows Klefbom and Lander to start in the AHL, maybe even get a whole season there. What do you say?

  38. Bag of Pucks says:

    Excuses can always be made for bad behavior, but it doesn’t excuse the behavior. You fire people face to face. Doing it any other way is gutless and cruel, particularly when the person has no idea it’s coming.

    I’ve had to fire people and those days are always the worst in any exec’s career, but you do it face to face because business (like life) is ultimately about people and relationships and people deserve to be treated with basic respect. Regardless of whether doing so is convenient or expedient.

    Ralph’s comments afterward speak to the fact that he has no real idea why MacT fired him and he’s not going to waste time or energy consumed with those thoughts. That’s presenting a brave face. In actuality, what it speaks to is a lack of proper communication and closure in the firing process.

    Right decision. Wrong execution.

  39. jonrmcleod says:

    Lowetide,

    Does anyone know why Ranger left professional hockey?

  40. fifthcartel says:

    Hoping to hear about the assistants during the conference.

    James Mirtle ‏@mirtle 6h

    Another member of Leafs organization they may lose to Oilers is Derek King. Betting Eakins takes him with him as assistant.
    Retweeted 20 times

    I think change would be fitting with a new coach and this new association with the Marlies/Toronto should be able to yield at least a solid d/f that Eakins is knowledgeable of.

  41. hockeyguy10 says:

    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 1m
    Oilers prospect Teemu Hartikainen (RFA) headed to the KHL to play for Ufa.

    Kind of out of left field.

  42. ASkoreyko says:

    This is an older article from Eliot but still bodes well for the Oilers signing Ranger:

    http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/opinion/2013/01/paul-ranger-may-prefer-to-stay-in-ahl-than-return-to-nhl.html

    It would be like a 2-for-1, you get a new coach and he brings a solution to one of your organizations problems.

  43. Truth Movement says:

    What the hell is Teemu thinking?

  44. Captain Obvious says:

    Trading for Tyutin depends upon how they view his contract length. If they see it as a liability then I think he could be had. However, if they see it as providing long term certainty, it will be difficult to get him. In any case Columbus is in win now mode so you aren’t getting Tyutin without them getting offense back. That means Hemsky + something and it also depends on them liking Hemsky. If they don’t this is never going to happen.

    I also like Gunnarson but I don’t see why the Leafs would trade him. A far more likely target is Liles.

  45. Lowetide says:

    Oh for crying out loud I give up trying to figure this summer out.

    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 6m

    Oilers prospect Teemu Hartikainen (RFA) headed to the KHL to play for Ufa.

  46. Lowetide says:

    Truth Movement:
    What the hell is Teemu thinking?

    He wasn’t part of the plan. Can’t read this any other way.

  47. marcseguin says:

    I know JW wrote about Weber here: http://oilersnation.com/2013/5/1/why-it-seems-unlikely-that-the-nashville-predators-would-trade-shea-weber

    LT: Would you trade Yak & #7 overall pick for Weber?

    (crap; maybe not; just saw the Teemu H going to KHL)

  48. Captain Obvious says:

    marcseguin:
    I know JW wrote about Weber here: http://oilersnation.com/2013/5/1/why-it-seems-unlikely-that-the-nashville-predators-would-trade-shea-weber

    LT: Would you trade Yak & #7 overall pick for Weber?

    (crap; maybe not; just saw the Teemu H going to KHL)

    Christ no. Trading Yakupov for Weber straight up would be a ludicrously bad trade. One of the worst in hockey history.

    Weber has a near market value contract right now so any trade that includes getting him has to factor in the opportunity cost of his contract.

  49. RMGS says:

    hockeyguy10:
    Craig Custance ‏@CraigCustance 1m
    Oilers prospect Teemu Hartikainen (RFA) headed to the KHL to play for Ufa.

    Kind of out of left field.

    Cue the Oilogosphere posts rationalizing why it makes sense that a favourite prospect (from Finland, no less) isn’t in the MacT picture! :)

    For what it’s worth, I don’t see it as a big loss. Harti couldn’t produce at the NHL level, and I think in MacT’s eyes, he falls under the bottom six “non-factor” category.

  50. dessert1111 says:

    Teemu?! I wonder if MacT had a talk with him that suggested he might not make opening night roster? This is going to be a completely new team.

  51. LMHF#1 says:

    jonrmcleod:
    Lowetide,

    Does anyone know why Ranger left professional hockey?

    Long story. Do a bit a searching. It involves a girlfriend (or fiancee), becoming a boat captain and doing a few other things.

    Here’s a couple links:

    http://theleafsnation.com/2012/8/21/so-what-happened-to-paul-ranger
    http://www.hockeyfights.com/forums/f14/what-happened-paul-ranger-171213/

  52. justDOit says:

    Truth Movement:
    What the hell is Teemu thinking?

    Maybe his fleet feet are longing for more ice? Hmmm – probably not.

    Could it be the $$$$$$$? Quite possibly.

    Maybe MacT has told him he’ll be starting in the AHL, waivers-be-damned? That’s my bet. Now we just need to know if he informed the Oilers of his intentions by text, postcard or instagram. Inquiring minds want to know!

  53. russ99 says:

    Re: Hartikainen:

    Good deal. One more spot for an experienced NHL checking forward.

    IMO, this was expected – he had to stick on the NHL roster this fall and didn’t show enough. But I thought we’d trade his rights before letting him take off to the KHL.

  54. Mr DeBakey says:

    What the hell is Teemu thinking?

    I’m guessing it involves a large pile of Double Sawbucks.

  55. justDOit says:

    And here I thought Eakins’ wife was a fan of #56 (sorry – can’t post this pic enough).

    http://www.eforu.com/cards/pictures/ingridkavelaars/16.jpg

  56. hockeyguy10 says:

    RMGS,

    I don’t see it as a big loss either. He could cycle the puck a little but it led nowhere the majority of the time. His lone goal was a rebound he put into an empty net. Too slow to be effective.

  57. Bag of Pucks says:

    pboy:
    Ralph Krueger deserved better than to be relieved of his duties during a 5 minute computer chat. Gretz called New Jersey a Mickey Mouse organization back in the ’80s and a lot worse could be said about the Oiler’s over the last 15 years. Going by the presser where they announed MacT’s hiring and this info about how they let go Krueger, Senior Management has a long fucking way to go before they can even see respectability.

    Couldn’t agree more. I suspect the reason for this is it appears as if ‘hockey operations’ operates under a separate set of rules from the rest of the org in Oiler land. This is a factor I’ve heard confirmed by a handful of people working for the Oiler org outside the rarefied air of hockey operations (i.e. the hockey guys do what they want).

    In a properly run organization, a firing of a senior manager involves the synchronous planning and coordination of a number of departments to ensure the employee is treated fairly, from a human relations and legal perspective, and in the best organizations, the process is carried out efficiently with proper consideration from a pr/public perception pov to ensure all parties are allowed to maintain optimal dignity and decorum. In some cases, the person being fired is even provided sufficient time to prepare their own response/public statement in anticipation of the media frenzy to follow. Basic human consideration. It works wonders.

    What the Oilers do is jump from one ill timed decision to the next, leaving other members of the org to clean up the mess after the fact (i.e. I just fired Krueger. Call PR to throw together a video clip. I’ll put on a tie).

    “The hiring could’ve leaked, they could’ve lost Eakins elsewhere, public relations isn’t their gig, etc.”

    These are all lousy excuses that are the stock and trade of Mickey Mouse orgs. If you want to fire Ralph, you put an offer in principal in place with Eakins and you put the onus on him to handle his own people and business to protect against leaks until a formal announcement is made. If Eakins can’t control his own people to stop press leaks, why are you hiring him? Then you put Lowe or Howson on Katz’ Gulfstream and you fire Krueger properly – face to face. Expensive, inconvenient, unwieldy. Yes, all of the above. Unfortunately, there is a price to be paid for doing things in the proper, classy manner.

    Somewhere along the way, the principles in Oilers’ hockey operations forgot this maxim.

  58. rickithebear says:

    I get tired of the complete lack of situational thought when it comes to Dmen and needs on our team.

    1. when considering a dman. Even play is the most infuential part of the game.
    EVGA/60, 2.30 or less versus first comp, below 1.75 versus lesser comp
    Puck movemnent,
    EVA/60 10th to 70th is 21 to 14 Even assists.

    2. A Dman who racks up a whole collection of points on the pp has no more of an afffect on Goal Differential than a dominate PK Dman.
    It is a bout the 6.00G/60 rate on both sides of the special team.
    problem is all the PP points bump a Dmans point count into an unrealistic return for results.

    Our team has A PP Qb in Justin Schultz. there are only 6 Dmen better than him this year.
    So does petry’s 4.00P/60 top 40 good enough for 2nd PP.
    i would think So.
    Weber averaged less than 4.00p/60

    PK:
    N. Schultz 11th 4.12GA/60
    Petry 13th 4.22
    Smid 24th 4.78
    Potter 37th 5.45
    it had better be a fairly special PK dman we are bringing in to replace these results.
    Weber was the worst Pk dman in the leag8ue and is around 10.62 last two.

    Now even;
    Corey potter faced 3rd comp and had the best EVGA/60 in the game last year. 1.27
    Petry Faced first comp was 2.21GA averages 18 EVassists per season
    Smid faced First comp was 2.26 GA averages 9 even assists per season
    Weber faces 1st comp was 2.24 GA/60 averages 18 ev assists per season.

    The lets get weber is not well thought out.
    He does not PK.
    He is equal in PP results to Petry and Potter.
    No results improvement.
    At even he can face tough comp but GA is the same as Smid and Petry.
    His EvAssist rate is the same as petry.

    So people want to trade for a dman who will make our top 4 D better
    Not improve Our PK or PP
    for a cap hit of 7.86M

    I will take my chances with the young man from Sweden who was facing the best in the league and had the best +/- in the SEL when he was injured.
    His Ev asssits rate in sweden suggests a 14-21 even assist Dman.
    For 6.5M less the next 3 years.

    I just laugh my ass off every time guys say lets trade petry.
    the only Dman to have been top 40 in
    Tough Comp faced GA
    Even Assists
    PP Production
    PK defence
    Blocks
    Hits
    Takeaways
    The only one in the league.

    it better be one hell of a return.

  59. Doug McLachlan says:

    Regarding the Kreuger firing, lets be clear that but for the coach of your team being in Switzerland three weeks before the draft and while you are apparently interviewing for his assistant (which, btw is a process you would think he might be a part of) they would have let him go face to face. Unique timing, unique situation.

    I don’t like the revolving door coaching situation in principle but MacT came to a conclusion, right wrong or otherwise, and made a decision. Mr. Dithers he is not and after the last few years why we don’t see this as a positive I don’t understand.

    I hope that Eakins clears the bench of any coaches he hasn’t approved of for HIS team. GM’s manage, coaches coach and owners have to let their managers and coaches do their own jobs.

    As for Hartikainen. Sad to see him go to the KHL but if it gives him the chance to develop his game in a way that he hasn’t been able to with the Oilers, I wish him well. If this is just a one year deal he may be in an even better spot next year come Oilers camp to push for a top 9 role.

  60. "Steve Smith" says:

    How could Hartikainen not be in the plans? He’s currently one of the Oilers’ top 12 forwards (that is not to say that he’s a legitimate top-12 NHL forward, just that he’s one of the best 12 the Oilers have). A bunch of the other top 12 are apparently being shipped out (Horcoff, Hemsky, you’d have to think Belanger, probably Smithson, hopefully Petrell, maybe Smyth and Jones), which means that our top 12 once those guys are taken out looks something like the following:

    Hall
    Nugent-Hopkins
    Eberle
    Gagner
    Pajaarvi
    Hartikainen
    Brown
    Smyth (?)
    Jones (?)

    That means that even assuming both Smyth and Jones play, for Hartikainen not to be part of the plan the Oilers would have to add three forwards more NHL-ready than Hartikainen. Does anybody seriously believe that that’s going to happen (without any of the names on the list above going the other direction)? I’m sure that MacTavish is going to have an active summer, but there are limits to what he can do.

    I can’t see how Hartikainen isn’t part of the plan for at least the immediate future.

  61. "Steve Smith" says:

    hockeyguy10:
    RMGS,

    I don’t see it as a big loss either. He could cycle the puck a little but it led nowhere the majority of the time. His lone goal was a rebound he put into an empty net. Too slow to be effective.

    I don’t think it’s a huge loss, in that he’s basically a marginal NHLer at this point. But once the anticipated blood-letting takes place, the Oilers are going to be severely short on NHL forwards, marginal or otherwise. I just don’t think all of those holes can be filled in one summer.

  62. Bank Shot says:

    I don’t think the Oilers can start Justin Schultz in the second pairing this season. He was a boat anchor there last season.

    Who knows how Belov handles the small ice. You don’t ink him into the top 6 either. He likely plays most of the games due to injury from the 7th spot anyway.

    You pick up your Tyutin for the first pairing and you get someone to play with Smid in the second.

    Tyutin-Petry
    Smid-Gunnarson
    Schultz-J.Schultz
    Belov

    Klefbom and Marincin still likely get the opportunity to get their feet wet with the addition of 2 NHL regular defencemen, but they aren’t forced to play a tonne of games if they aren’t ready.

  63. Bank Shot says:

    “Steve Smith”: I don’t think it’s a huge loss, in that he’s basically a marginal NHLer at this point.But once the anticipated blood-letting takes place, the Oilers are going to be severely short on NHL forwards, marginal or otherwise.I just don’t think all of those holes can be filled in one summer.

    Well its not hard to find Hartikaianen level forwards so I wouldn’t be that worried about it. Those are the guys you can literally sign a dozen of in the offseason.

  64. G Money says:

    Semi-amusing factoid: if our fourth line next year consists of Smyth centering Brown and Jones (please god no), we could call it the “common” or “generic” line or something. Perhaps MacT could sign Nick Johnson.

    The top 5 most common surnames in the US:

    Smith (yeah yeah, I know it’s Smyth)
    Johnson
    Williams
    Brown
    Jones

  65. Lowetide says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    How could Hartikainen not be in the plans?He’s currently one of the Oilers’ top 12 forwards (that is not to say that he’s a legitimate top-12 NHL forward, just that he’s one of the best 12 the Oilers have).A bunch of the other top 12 are apparently being shipped out (Horcoff, Hemsky, you’d have to think Belanger, probably Smithson, hopefully Petrell, maybe Smyth and Jones), which means that our top 12 once those guys are taken out looks something like the following:

    Hall
    Nugent-Hopkins
    Eberle
    Gagner
    Pajaarvi
    Hartikainen
    Brown
    Smyth (?)
    Jones (?)

    That means that even assuming both Smyth and Jones play, for Hartikainen not to be part of the plan the Oilers would have to add three forwards more NHL-ready than Hartikainen.Does anybody seriously believe that that’s going to happen (without any of the names on the list above going the other direction)?I’m sure that MacTavish is going to have an active summer, but there are limits to what he can do.

    I can’t see how Hartikainen isn’t part of the plan for at least the immediate future.

    At this point I think “reacting” is the best plan for this summer. It’s a waste of time trying to figure out what’s going on, because we’re (i’m) looking at this through a rebuild for a better tomorrow lens.

    I don’t know why Hartikainen was let go, because I don’t know what they’re planning. If they let him go because they are re-signing Ryan Jones that’s one thing. If they let him go because Rob Klinkhammer is coming here? Hey, that’s fine.

  66. speeds says:

    I’d have to listen to the audio again to get an exact quote, but Stauffer was just talking about the 7th overall pick, and said something along the lines of maybe you move the 7th and a D for a younger, big C entering his 3rd year in the NHL.

    There has been some talk of Couturier, perhaps something involving him is in the works?

  67. Lowetide says:

    speeds:
    I’d have to listen to the audio again to get an exact quote, but Stauffer was just talking about the 7th overall pick, and said something along the lines of maybe you move the 7th and a D for a younger, big C entering his 3rd year in the NHL.

    There has been some talk of Couturier, perhaps something involving him is in the works?

    Makes sense. Either way, that’s a way to get a young D or C–#7 overall and a young D or F. Marincin?

  68. RMGS says:

    Bank Shot: Well its not hard to find Hartikaianen level forwards so I wouldn’t be that worried about it. Those are the guys you can literally sign a dozen of in the offseason.

    Yeah, replacing “non-factor” Hartikainen is not too worrisome. It’s replacing Hemsky and Horcoff – given their current trade market value – that’s more of a concern.

    I’ll say this though: MacT has everyone’s attention!

  69. Mr DeBakey says:

    If they let him go because Rob Klinkhammer is coming here?

    Klinkhammer already re-upped for another go in Phoenix.
    He would’ve been a good pick-up.

    I stress pick-up cuz he’s a prairie boy.

  70. speeds says:

    Lowetide,

    Tough to say, I would guess PHI might be looking for Petry, don’t really see a fit there if I’m EDM and they are insistent on Petry, but I suppose it depends on other moves and the total deal?

  71. Lowetide says:

    speeds:
    Lowetide,

    Tough to say, I would guess PHI might be looking for Petry, don’t really see a fit there if I’m EDM and they are insistent on Petry, but I suppose it depends on other moves and the total deal?

    Petry & 7? We’d need something else aside from Couturier. Where do they pick?

  72. speeds says:

    Lowetide,

    They pick 11th

  73. Lowetide says:

    speeds:
    Lowetide,

    They pick 11th

    Okay. So, Petry and 7 for Couturier and 11. Too much from Philly? I don’t know and I love Couturier but that’s too much without the pick.

  74. wheatnoil says:

    Lowetide: Petry & 7? We’d need something else aside from Couturier. Where do they pick?

    Petry HAS to be considered untouchable. What good is bringing in Couturier if you just create a bigger, larger hole in a part of the roster that’s even more difficult to fill? Trading a position of weakness for weakness just creates a large hole somewhere. Where the Oilers have strength is on the wings and, surprisingly, in non-NHL ready defensive prospects. With Gernat, Marincin, Klefbom, and Musil (not to mention less heralded ones like Simpson, Davidson, Fedun), the Oilers can actually afford to lose one of them in a package deal to fill a hole elsewhere… either for an NHL ready D-man (if the team is having cap troubles) or for a centre.

  75. speeds says:

    Another guy that fits what Stauffer said (as I remember it), and didn’t occur to me until I saw this mentioned on HF, would be Ryan Johansen. He fits that CLB connection that many have been wondering about. Howson liked him enough to draft him, I guess that doesn’t necessarily mean he’d still be in favor of acquiring him for the Oilers. CLB also has a number of D that might be of interest, along with a bunch of picks.

    Not that difficult, IMO, to conceive some kind of trade with EDM/CLB where EDM moves 7 + ??? for some pieces that might fit from CLB.

  76. Lowetide says:

    I think Johansen makes some sense. Not for #7, but there are some nice things.

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2013/05/columbus-connection.html

  77. regwald says:

    I think the Hartikainen move is all about the $$$ and not necessarily about not fitting in the plans.

    His qualifying offer is $826,875. His cap hit the past 3 yrs was $875K. Due to the bonus included there, he will probably just get his qualifying offer. All numbers from capgeek. His AHL salary was $65K

    Anyone out there who thinks the KHL, would not give him $1M+ ? I think he just looked at his bank account and decided it would make economic sense to move.

  78. murphy says:

    Sorry LT but it doesn’t sound like Columbus is keen to trade Tyutin, they see his value as well. http://mobile.bluejacketsxtra.com/wap/news/text.jsp?sid=362&nid=2755856851&cid=22827&scid=-1&ith=1&title=Puck-Rakers+Blog&headtitle=Puck-Rakers+Blog

    That’s a link to a great article about the state of the blue jacketa defense, take a look and it sounds as if he is considered one of, if not the most important cog on their D. Sounds like an Eberle or Gagner type return on our side not hemsky.

  79. gcw_rocks says:

    pboy,

    You mean hiring MacT on the same date as they fired him years before rather than pre-trade deadline or after the season so as to rub it in Tambo’s face? You mean that kind of mickey mouse stuff? You forget, these are the boys on the bus. They can do no wrong, in their own minds at least.

  80. Melman says:

    pardon the ignorance, but if Harti goes to the KHL for a year do the Oilers still own his rights? I gather they would, otherwise why let him go – correct?

    If so, it’s potentially a clever way to let someone get another year to develop – in particular his scoring touch, without risking losing him to waivers in case he isn’t quite ready. He can make more cash – which we assume he’d be happy with and be closer to home for a year (possibly a bonus). I wonder if he’s eligible to rejoin the team (if he signs) once the KHL season ends.

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