BRILLIANCE

Years from now we’ll look back on the current RW depth chart and wonder what could have been. I doubt the magic trio of Hemsky, Eberle and Yakupov will be together much longer, but the talent of the group  is astounding. The Czech wizard, the Russian sniper and the prairie kid with the quick hands have been together on the same ice for less than a season, their collective talents are obvious and abundant. Some say the trio can co-exist on the same team, but I believe one of them will be on the outside looking in–the Oilers simply don’t have 9 skill forwards.

azorcan

NHL CAREER, PER 82 GAMES PLAYED

  1. Jordan Eberle 82, 29-37-66
  2. Ales Hemsky 82, 18-44-62
  3. Nail Yakupov 82, 29-24-53

Two of these guys received Olympic invites yesterday and the third one is in the mail. When we look back on this summer–and I’m about to go cliche–maybe the best move MacT made was a deal he didn’t pull the trigger on?

Hemsky turns 30 in a month, Eberle might be captain by fall and Yakupov is Beatlemania on skates. If Peter Gzowski were alive today he’d be heading back to Edmonton for a “Game of Our Lives” 2.0, and Yakupov would steal the show.

 AFTER THAT, IT’S NOT SIMILAR

The Oilers sent away Magnus Paajarvi and  didn’t re-sign Lennart Petrell, but brought back Ryan Jones and Mike Brown, and they hired Jesse Joenssu for the starboard. If the club keeps their three skill wingers above, there’s probably room for two more on this side (and the third one–probably Joensuu–will play LW).

NHL CAREER, PER 82 GAMES PLAYED

  • Ryan Jones 15-12-27
  • Jesse Joensuu 9-9-18
  • Mike Brown 4-4-8

Joensuu looks interesting based on what we can read;  MacT is clearly relying more heavily on Matti Virmanen across the pond for his pro scouting. Virmanen’s hand appears to be on the Belov, Joenssu and Grebeshkov additions.

AHL RW DEPTH CHART

  1. Toni Rajala 46, 17-28-45 in AHL last season; he’s 22, 5.10 163
  2. Derek Nesbitt 67, 26-21-47 in AHL last season; he’s 31, 6.00 185
  3. Matthew Ford 53, 9-15-24 in AHL last season; he’s 28, 6.01 207
  4. Tyler Pitlick 44, 3-7-10 in AHL last season; he’s 21, 6.02 196
  5. Erick Lizon 17, 0-0-0 in AHL last season; he’s 27, 6.04 225
  6. Cameron Abney 4, 0-0-0 in AHL last season; he’s 22, 6.05, 205

Rajala is the best player in the group and one suspects he’ll get some NHL time this coming season–especially if Hemsky is offloaded at some point between now and the deadline. Nesbitt is a solid AHL scorer, Ford and Pitlick will fight for playing time (and this is last chance Texaco for Pitlick, but the organization always liked him under the previous administration and MacT’s search for size up front was not successful this summer).

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

chinatown

 Lots of summer hockey talk today, MacT’s the human story generator. Scheduled to appear:

  • Alan Hull from Copper and Blue. Gagner’s signing, Oilers at center, free agents still available. 
  • Jeff Chapman from Copper and Blue. Team Canada, Size with skill on Oilers forward lines, Hemsky.
  • Michael Parkatti from Boys on the Bus. We’ll have a long, long look at center for the 13-14 Oilers.
  • Jeff Krushell from Krush Performance. Jeff will talk about baseball’s latest suspensions and wasting impact offensive seasons in the 2nd division.
  • Jason Strudwick from Team 1260 and Oilers Nation. Jason will give us his impression of the Oilers summer.

Lowetide_ on twitter and 10-1260 via text. Hope you can tune in!!!!!!

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74 Responses to "BRILLIANCE"

  1. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    “When we look back on this summer–and I’m about to go cliche–maybe the best move MacT made was a deal he didn’t pull the trigger on?”

    Schneider? Clarkson?

  2. bookje says:

    Get Strudwick to discuss what MacT called a circus in the dressing room. What has been wrong with team ‘culture’ in the dressing room and how much does it have to do with the ping pong table?

  3. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    How did I miss these Nesbitt and Ford signings?

    Also, don’t we have to assume that MacT’s language about giving OKC a bit more direction might mean that Pitlick is getting a big push this year, at least in his first 15-20 games?

  4. Lowetide says:

    Bohologo: THAT would be a dream, but Gzowski was an original. I don’t think hockey’s ever been tackled by a better writer.

  5. SinceTheWHADays says:

    As always there’s a lot of talk about possible line combo’s, but (I think it was MacCurdy, in a recent post) who reminded about Eakins tendency, as a coach, to do a lot of juggling, including the use of A LOT of D throughout the season. It could be that the top 9 and all the D could be intermixed all season. I can see a guy like Eakins “line match” on a player vs player basis more so that just line vs line. Any thoughts??

  6. Jordan says:

    SinceTheWHADays:
    As always there’s a lot of talk about possible line combo’s, but (I think it was MacCurdy, in a recent post) who reminded about Eakins tendency, as a coach, to do a lot of juggling, including the use of A LOT of D throughout the season.It could be that the top 9 and all the D could be intermixed all season.I can see a guy like Eakins “line match” on a player vs player basis more so that just line vs line.Any thoughts??

    Well… The only thought I have is that if the Oilers have Klefbom make the team this year, they could have 10 Defensemen.

    That’s enough for 2 full units.

    Maybe the Oilers are actually planing to be unconventional:

    Offensive/Neutral zone draws 1:
    Hall – Gagner – Yakupov
    J-Schultz – Eberle

    Offensive/Neutral zone draws 2:
    Perron – RNH – Hemsky
    Belov – Petry

    Defensive zone draws:
    Ferrence/Potter – Gordon/Lander – Klefbom/Grebeshkov
    Smid – Larsen/N Schultz

    Transitioned to Coaching:
    Smyth

    Depth for predictable injuries:
    Jones, Jonesuu, Brown

  7. goldenchild says:

    Been thinking about this for a while but didnt post because I didn t think there was any chance Hemmer stays, now I believe there is at least a sliver of hope. So if we look at this group in pairs ( my pairs, Hall-Nuge, Gagner- Eberle, Hemsky-Perron) rather than the top 6 everyone sort of assume the lineup looks a little more balanced.

    Hall-Nuge- Yak
    Jones/Joensuu- Gagner- Eberle
    Perron- Gordon-Hemsky
    Smyth – Vet UFA C(Steckel/Maholtra)- Jones/Joensuu

    The top line and the Gordon line play the toughs, Samwise and Ebs feast on the softies. Nuge and Hall seem ready for it and to me Yak is a gamer who cares, I think he would relish playing against good players.

    Hemmer and Perron both have track records of playing toughs and doing well in the past. I know Gordon doesnt seem like an ideal fit for 2 elite skilled wingers but Hemmer has played with 2 way centers much of his career and done fine (Horc-Pecca-Stoll), Perron has played under Hitch so Im sure he has played with 2 way and checking forwards before as well.

    To me a roster like that makes a lot of sense you have elite offence all over the first 3 lines and maybe it generates more value out of Gordon, I realize Gordon doesnt bring the same offence as the guys listed above but at the very least he should be able to do the dirty work and help get the puck and some room for the 2 skilled guys.

  8. SinceTheWHADays says:

    goldenchild,

    Ya. I think Eakins thinks the same way you do and what your saying seems very plausible and possible for the up coming season. Gordon will help the skill guys with there defensive play and the skill guys will help Gordon’s box cars. The other fellas will all be used according to there strengths depending on specific situations. But it would take a very astute coach to do that: going by the some of the descriptions I’ve seen about Eakins it sounds more and more like this is the kind of thing we can expect; rather than “set” lines & D pairings.

  9. LMHF#1 says:

    goldenchild:

    Jones/Joensuu- Gagner- Eberle

    That black hole on the left side would absolutely kill the line’s potential to make a difference.

    We are viewing this team through the prism of “they damn well better make the playoffs” this year, correct? Because that 2 line isn’t going to cut it. Not to mention placing Gordon and his complete inability to contribute offensively on that 3 line in the hope that he would somehow not interfere with Perron and Hemsky. There must be more talent on this roster if the Oilers are going to the dance.

  10. SinceTheWHADays says:

    This is the main article that gives me pause to speculate about possible line combo’s, for anyone who’s interested.

    http://theleafsnation.com/2013/6/9/dallas-eakins-heads-to-edmonton

  11. SinceTheWHADays says:

    Bohologo,

    “The Game” by, Ken Dryden is a hockey classic by a Canadian author.

  12. SinceTheWHADays says:

    Bohologo,

    I agree, but Dryden’s book does provide a POV that is unique and gives a behind the scenes look at the game that wasn’t otherwise available at the time he wrote it.

  13. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    “Cobb” isn’t a great film, but the story of Stump and Cobb is a pretty engrossing one all the same.

    ——–

    From yesterday:

    “Damned if he didn’t do all of it, and the truth is the 4line C job I didn’t cross off may end up going to Will Acton (Rob Soria mentioned that on the show today) or Anton Lander (and in-house option).”

    Will Acton… hmm. I don’t think another team’s VDV is going to meet the threshold MacT set for the bottom 6: “you have to at least be a threat to score”

    I think Acton is probably a reliable call up as a 5th or 6th C. That is, when the roof has already collapsed and Woodguy is 2 weeks away with supplies.

  14. Madtown Oil says:

    goldenchild:
    Been thinking about this for a while but didnt post because I didn t think there was any chance Hemmer stays, now I believe there is at least a sliver of hope.So if we look at this group in pairs ( my pairs, Hall-Nuge, Gagner- Eberle, Hemsky-Perron) rather than the top 6 everyone sort of assume the lineup looks a little more balanced.

    Hall-Nuge- Yak
    Jones/Joensuu- Gagner- Eberle
    Perron- Gordon-Hemsky
    Smyth – Vet UFA C(Steckel/Maholtra)- Jones/Joensuu

    The top line and the Gordon line play the toughs, Samwise and Ebs feast on the softies. Nuge and Hall seem ready for it and to me Yak is a gamer who cares, I think he would relish playing against good players.

    Hemmer and Perron both have track records of playing toughs and doing well in the past.I know Gordon doesnt seem like an ideal fit for 2 elite skilled wingers but Hemmer has played with 2 way centers much of his career and done fine (Horc-Pecca-Stoll), Perron has played under Hitch so Im sure he has played with 2 way and checking forwards before as well.

    To me a roster like that makes a lot of sense you have elite offence all over the first 3 lines and maybe it generates more value out of Gordon, I realize Gordon doesnt bring the same offence as the guys listed above butat the very least he should be able to do the dirty work and help get the puck and some room for the 2 skilled guys.

    Agree with the pairs–one of the first quotes from Eakins mentioned he takes that approach. I would just switch Yak and Ebs–he isn’t ready for power versus power.

    Hall-Nuge- Eberle (p vs p)
    Joensuu- Gagner- Yak
    Perron- Gordon-Hemsky
    Smyth – Lander- Jones

    IMHO, Perron’s ability to play against tougher opposition is wasted on a the typical Perron-Gagner-Yak line tmentioned on here…as both Gagner and Yak aren’t suited to play against power.

    I would go with Joensuu on the second line–outcome by Christmas is either I) he is ability to fill the role, great or ii) isn’t all that much–then his boxcars will be pumped up by Gagner and Yak and can be unloaded for more value (old Habs style).

    This line up has two unknowns–can Joensuu fill soft minutes role and can Lander fill 4th line. Compared to the huge unknowns in recent years this is music to me.

  15. BlacqueJacque says:

    LT did you mean port instead of starboard?

  16. denny33 says:

    LMHF#1,

    Agreed.

    And after reading Bruce’s blog at the Journal – can anyone rationally understand our team not
    giving the LW Linus Omark one last *chance* to make the team?

    As Bruce points out – LED – the Swiss league even after his NHL linemates went back to the NHL.

    Linus is 26 now and hopefully he has matured….

    New administration ( sort of ) and a clean slate for one final crack…

    Would need a good reason – given our list of current LW on our roster – not to give him a chance.

  17. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bruce has a nice piece on Omark

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/07/23/no-news-is-not-good-news-for-linus-omark/

    He can play on my team anyday.

    EDIT:
    denny33,

    beat me to it.

  18. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    37 minutes ago
    DarrenDreger: Trevor Lewis and Kings avoid salary arb and settle on 1 year deal @ $1.325 mil.

    does this put more pressure on the Clifford rumor?

  19. serum114 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Was just about to ask the same thing. Based on Capgeek numbers, they are now ~$250,000 from the cap. If Clifford can be had for a non-roster item, would it be easy enough to move one of the D or possibly Hemsky (I’m hoping not Hemsky) for a non-roster item to keep the contracts manageable and down at 48?

  20. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    serum114:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Was just about to ask the same thing. Based on Capgeek numbers, they are now ~$250,000 from the cap. If Clifford can be had for a non-roster item, would it be easy enough to move one of the D or possibly Hemsky (I’m hoping not Hemsky) for a non-roster item to keep the contracts manageable and down at 48?

    It’s one of the more interesting rumors out there

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2013/07/the-truth-is-out-there.html

    who knows what it takes, but after the draft I think it is fair to say Oilers and LAK are back on speaking terms and a deal is possible.

    With any luck it will be something like Pitlick plus a pick. LAK don’t want roster players or cap hits.

  21. Vaclav says:

    serum114:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Was just about to ask the same thing. Based on Capgeek numbers, they are now ~$250,000 from the cap. If Clifford can be had for a non-roster item, would it be easy enough to move one of the D or possibly Hemsky (I’m hoping not Hemsky) for a non-roster item to keep the contracts manageable and down at 48?

    Willie Mitchell is likely to miss most if not all of the 2013/14 season. When he goes on LTIR to begin the season the Kings will have the cap space for whatever contract they sign Clifford to. Toffoli could be sent to the AHL for a day or two until they can claim the LTIR space for Mitchell.

  22. bookje says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Bruce has a nice piece on Omark

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/07/23/no-news-is-not-good-news-for-linus-omark/

    He can play on my team anyday.

    No insult intended, but I think Bruce is far too slow to play in the NHL at his age.

  23. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    bookje: No insult intended, but I think Bruce is far too slow to play in the NHL at his age.

    But, he’s good in the room. Veteran presence and such. Give him the C.

  24. spoiler says:

    Bohologo: I think that’s a reasonable stance. Unlike baseball, which has been blessed by some good writing (WP Kinsella is from Alberta; instead of writing The Thrill of the Grass and Shoeless Joe, why didn’t he write Skateless Joe Malone Comes To Manitoba?), hockey doesn’t really have a poet laureate.

    It’s too bad Alice Munro or Douglas Coupland or Margaret Atwood are not bigger hockey fans. Mordecai Richler could have done the work (he was a Habs fan), but chose instead to write about snooker, I think. Robertson Davies would have just written about the Leafs, and that is no way to live.

    At least the Tragically Hip sing about hockey every now and then.

    All the more reason to pitch this idea to your wife; it’s what the country needs!

    Scott Young?

    (Neil’s dad, btw)

  25. commonfan14 says:

    goldenchild: Hall-Nuge- Yak

    The Oilers owe it to history to give this a long look.

    I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: When you draft a full line of #1 overalls over 3 years, just put them together and watch the world burn.

    I think we make things too hard sometimes.

  26. spoiler says:

    The Rags looks like the most cap-strung team to my eye right now. Somewhere around $3.4M left to sign Zuccarello and Stepan…

  27. bookje says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: But, he’s good in the room. Veteran presence and such. Give him the C.

    He could use his astrology skills to help the players achieve their potential. “Yak, you are a Virgo, so today you want to be cautious, but bold in your play as good things will happen to you unless you make bad choices causing bad things to happen to you”.

  28. wheatnoil says:

    SinceTheWHADays:
    This is the main article that gives me pause to speculate about possible line combo’s, for anyone who’s interested.

    http://theleafsnation.com/2013/6/9/dallas-eakins-heads-to-edmonton

    From the above article about Eakins:

    “He would have certain defaults that he the team was in need of a goal or had to shake things up, but wouldn’t let other teams rely on knowing what they were facing going into a game. Opening lines have been often known to be thrown out the window minutes into the first period…. To him, the concept of a 1/2/3/4 line system will fly out the window, with no shyness to dropping down a good player on a cold streak to a lesser role until he begins to contribute.”

    I have a feeling this season could be a wild ride. Hemsky may start on the bottom 6 in the opening line-up, but Eakins may not use him that way. I wonder if we’ll see Lander get pushed up to Gordon’s wing as part of a shut-down line late in the game. With 5 offensive wingers, Eakins may run whoever is flying and even do fun things like push Hall to center for a shift or two.

    It seems like Eakins likes to keep the opposition on its toes and he’s got a fair bit of firepower on the Oilers to keep them guessing… offensively at least.

  29. denny33 says:

    bookje,

    I said that about two players on last year’s team….and they kept being allowed to play for our team…

    I say – give Bruce a chance as well.

  30. wheatnoil says:

    bookje: No insult intended, but I think Bruce is far too slow to play in the NHL at his age.

    Why do you hate Bruce McCurdy so much?

  31. linkfromhyrule says:

    so now that the gagner thing has been settled, what do we talk about for the next 6 weeks…. I mean really I’m bored and at work, what am I supposed to do? Work? Hell no

  32. G Money says:

    With all the D at his disposal, I hope Eakins truly goes the unconventional route and rolls FIVE lines – one made entirely of D.

    L5: Grebeshkov – Potter – Schultz Jr

    Worth the price of admission.

  33. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    I like Struds. He’s amiable and he has a wealth of stories to share.

    But I don’t trust his assessment of hockey worth a damn. He’s excessively committed to size and gumption narratives. I imagine that reflects his own pedigree… but it’s not a good starting point to build a winner IMO.

  34. Bank Shot says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Bruce has a nice piece on Omark

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/07/23/no-news-is-not-good-news-for-linus-omark/

    He can play on my team anyday.

    EDIT:
    denny33,

    beat me to it.

    The guy got healthy scratched in the Swiss League finals. He could probably post top six tweener offence again in the NHL if The Oilers gave him good line mates, good zone starts, and easy comp, but they already have guys like Gagner and Yakoupov that should get that treatment instead and they will post much better numbers.

  35. Jordan says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I think he had a really good point about Hemsky though – he needs to play with players who have some complementary skills. I’m not convinced that Gordon has the hockey sense to play well with Ales.

    So, if you can’t play those two together… what about something like this:

    Jonesuu – Gordon – Jones
    Smyth – Lander – Hemsky

    I realize that may have the de-facto shutdown line weaker, but would the off-set of offense from the 4th? Could be worth a look?

  36. TheOtherJohn says:

    Hemsky needs complimentary players to facilitate his play and your answer is Ryan Smyth and Lander. I don’t think complimentary means what you think it means

  37. G Money says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    Hemsky needs complimentary players to facilitate his play and your answer is Ryan Smyth and Lander. I don’t think complimentary means what you think it means

    Hmmm.

    The enigma that is Hemsky: Slick skater. Sublimely talented stick handler. Underrated shot. Willing to put himself in harms way to make a play.

    Yet the only year he has lived up to his otherwise breathtaking potential was playing with a mucker extraordinaire (Smyth) and a defensively responsible Centre (Horc).

    Smyth is not the mucker he once was, but he’s still one of the better ones at that on the Oilers

    Lander is not (yet) a credible Horcoff replacement, but he may yet get there.

    This line combo might or might not work, but a look back on history suggests that it does not deserve the ridicule you seem to be emitting…

  38. Lucinius says:

    All Hemsky needs from his line mates are; defensive responsibility, able to hit the net after receiving his passes, ability to not get in his way when he’s carrying the puck across/near the blue line (Gagner SUCKED at this — he always entered the zone in the same areas as Hemsky, often forcing Hemsky out of his plan of attack), and the ability to know when Hemsky is about to dipsy doodle at the blue line and not go off-side.

    That’s all he needs!

  39. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    G Money: Yet the only year he has lived up to his otherwise breathtaking potential was playing with a mucker extraordinaire (Smyth) and a defensively responsible Centre (Horc).

    I think this is a gross undersell of the player.

    ——

    My problem with Struds’ analysis in point form:

    –I don’t think gumption has the power he grants it. “Wanting” something and “working” toward a goal are extremely valuable, but they can’t outpace natural limitations in the way he seems to imagine.

    –I don’t agree with his Quinnesque plans to insert size in the top 6 simply for its own sake and his choices (Jones and Joensuu) are particularly bad options IMO.

    –His bizarre equation of size and “puck retrieval” needs no comment beyond noting how bizarre it is.

    –Saying Hemsky needs complementary players is a weird way of acknowledging that Hemsky plays a team sport. Besides, if I were going to follow this logic, I’d generally say the better player is not the one in need of worse players to succeed. Putting a better player with a worse player expecting the performance of the better player to increase seems… bizarre to me. If anything, the complementary players need Hemsky.

  40. Numenius says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    Hemsky needs complimentary players to facilitate his play and your answer is Ryan Smyth and Lander. I don’t think complimentary means what you think it means

    So Hemsky needs players to say really nice things about him?

    I don’t think complimentary means what you think it means either. :)

  41. serum114 says:

    Numenius: So Hemsky needs players to say really nice things about him?

    I don’t think complimentary means what you think it means either.

    That’s why you need guys who are good in the room. Create an environment of positivity.

  42. bookje says:

    Numenius: So Hemsky needs players to say really nice things about him?

    His body language suggests some level of depression – I think that linemates who are complimentary may complement Hemsky well.

  43. Numenius says:

    bookje: His body language suggests some level of depression – I think that linemates who are complimentary may complement Hemsky well.

    A free bottle of wine with dinner might not do too badly either.

  44. khildahl says:

    bookje: His body language suggests some level of depression – I think that linemates who are complimentary may complement Hemsky well.

    A complete complement of compliments coming from a complementary collage of colleagues.

  45. OilClog says:

    Hemsky, is the best addition to the bottom 6 we could possibly hope for no?

    I have absolutely no idea what to expect this year, it’s been so long since we’ve been competitive I really don’t know what is going to shake out this season, soooo much potential, but so much worry. This team is definitely built better.. but the weakness down the middle is a concern. Yet after seeing all that has taken place, I refuse to believe that MacT is done. He’s been very active all summer, and I don’t expect that to stop honestly.

  46. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    There complimentary players who are their to complement they’re fellow players. Its there practice to preserve the comity their.

  47. Jordan says:

    serum114: That’s why you need guys who are good in the room. Create an environment of positivity.

    So, what you’re saying is we need some physicists to get him some extra protons?

    khildahl: A complete complement of compliments coming from a complementary collage of colleagues.

    Excellent tongue twister! Does anyone have any more?

  48. khildahl says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    There complimentary players who are their to complement they’re fellow players. Its there practice to preserve the comity their.

    You bastard. This made me think of this (extremely NSFW).

  49. TheOtherJohn says:

    Ryan Smyth is 18 months removed from decent play. Horrible second half 2 years ago and a mediocre season last year. He is not one of the better muckers we have on this team or, if he is, we have a way worse team than I thought.

    The year you are talking about Smyth and Horcoff playing effectively with Hemsky was 6+ years ago

  50. FastOil says:

    Bank Shot: The guy got healthy scratched in the Swiss League finals. He could probably post top six tweener offence again in the NHLif The Oilers gave him good line mates, good zone starts, and easy comp, but they already have guys like Gagner and Yakoupov that should get that treatment instead and they will post much better numbers.

    He is talented but the sample size is big enough that it is apparent something is loose in the brain bucket. He is continually running into difficulty, and his size means his NHL chances now at this age and burgeoning rep are approaching zero. Only cro-magnons get to be problematic, not all world talent and have multiple chances.

  51. russ99 says:

    TheOtherJohn,

    I don’t really believe that, only that Smytty physically had run out of gas. Last season it happened in mid-February, and the season before in late December/Early January,

    If Eakins can get him to a better fitness level and limit his minutes to 4th line duty (and no crazy center experiments/desperation moves) and give him some 2nd unit PP time, we’d be pleased with the results.

  52. russ99 says:

    I’d love to see Omark given another shot, but realistically that ship has sailed.

    Last year would have been the year to bring him back, he’s much more suited to Krueger than Eakins.

    Watch him light up the SEL this season.

    BTW: I wonder how much better our roster would be had the Oilers canned Tambellini a year a before they did?

  53. TheOtherJohn says:

    russ99:
    TheOtherJohn,

    I don’t really believe that, only that Smytty physically had run out of gas. Last season it happened in mid-February, and the season before in late December/Early January,

    If Eakins can get him to a better fitness level and limit his minutes to 4th line duty (and no crazy center experiments/desperation moves) and give him some 2nd unit PP time, we’d be pleased with the results.

    Yeah, 37 years olds whose last good results were 18 months ago: fitness or he’s done. I’d go with done but it could be his fitness levels

  54. denny33 says:

    TheOtherJohn,

    That and it was only half a season……

    If Smytty was tired last year…he will be really tired towards the end of a full season…

  55. linkfromhyrule says:

    denny33:
    TheOtherJohn,

    That and it was only half a season……

    If Smytty was tired last year…he will be really tired towards the end of a full season…

    Hopefully Eakins will be smart and will not play Smyth every night. The guy needs a night off once in a while, and it could be a good opportunity to sub in some of our AHL players to see how they fare in the big league

  56. denny33 says:

    russ99,

    It is not that I am making a case for Omark to make the team. I agree with you about his obvious individual issues…

    Last year, this team was BRUTAL at scoring goals 5 on 5. Brutal. Embarrassing.

    Our list of LW’s for the 3rd and 4th lines looks to be Brutal and embarrassing again.

    Just wondering if he should ( we qualified him last year to keep his rights ) be given a Last chance to try out… Just a camp invite. Nothing more.

    Not sure Eakins *might* not be the perfect tonic to a guy that may be looking to prove he belongs….

    What would be the harm in taking a look though?

  57. Hammers says:

    Don’t diagree Denny33 but I doubt it will happen . Omark should have been here 4-5 years ago when there was a real chance . Still think McT may buy out N.Schultz for cap relief . There are others that can do his job ; Grebs ; Belov for sure and maybe Larsen . That gives us say $ 2.5 – $3 right know with another 2 at trade deadline . Then Hemsky maybe brings us a 1st rd pick at the deadline.

  58. pboy says:

    This is my favorite quote from Cobb. It’s when Ty and Stump go to Lake Tahoe so Ty can get “laid”.

    Louis Prima: With all the great players playing ball right now, how well do you think you would do against today’s pitchers?

    Ty Cobb: Well, I figure against today’s pitchers I’d only probably hit about .290

    Louis Prima: .290? Well that’s amazing, because you batted over .400 a… a whole bunch of times. Now tell us all, we’d all like to know, why do you think you’d only hit .290?

    Ty Cobb: Well, I’m 72 fucking years old you ignorant son of a bitch.

  59. Jordan says:

    denny33:
    russ99,

    It is not that I am making a case for Omark to make the team. I agree with you about his obvious individual issues…

    Not sure Eakins *might* not be the perfect tonic to a guy that may be looking to prove he belongs….

    What would be the harm in taking a look though?

    The Neanderthals might get restless…

    …I mean how much chest beating are we expected to endure?

  60. "Steve Smith" says:

    I don’t know baseball at all, really, but I’ve always thought that somebody should make a movie about the relationship between Cobb and Sam Crawford. Working* title: “Wahoo and the Peach”.

    *Okay, so there isn’t any actual work being done on it. Dreaming title?

  61. "Steve Smith" says:

    And now, in keeping with my custom of doing research after shooting my mouth off rather than before, I see that Crawford was actually in Cobb, portrayed by Crash Davis. Wikipedia describes it as a “bit part”, though, which jibes with my recollection (in that I have no recollection of it).

  62. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Great picture up top, LT! I saw an event like this (an “eruptive prominence”) a couple weeks ago in real time in a specialized solar telescope here at the observatory, & it was something to see. Like the one pictured, the eruption ultimately grew to 4 or 500,000 km in extent … about a third of the Sun’s diameter.

    Thanks, all, for the votes of confidence re: the KHL, but I don’t think I could cut it anymore. My 5-hole is weak, and my 1-, 2-, 3-, 4-, 6- and 7-holes aren’t much better.

    Love “The Game Of Our Lives”. Gzowski could hardly have chosen better than the 1980-81 Oilers as a subject. Got my complimentary copy as a Christmas gift from one Peter Pocklington, who sent one to every Oiler season ticket holder that Christmas of 1981. Pocklington had panache, especially in the early days.

    Also, Scott Young is one of my heroes since early days. If you look carefully you can find the occasional homage to his writing style within my own.

  63. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Ty Cobb was the Eddie Shore of baseball.

  64. Lowetide says:

    Cobb was an asshole. Shore was a crazy guy. I think Shore was scarier, though.

  65. bookje says:

    Bruce – which observatory? U of A or the Space science centre?

  66. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide:
    Cobb was an asshole. Shore was a crazy guy. I think Shore was scarier, though.

    Cobb was more than an asshole. He belongs to the pantheon of great men that seem to exist only to torment moralists over the question of how such talent, verve and accomplishment can find its way into such a callous being. See also, Herod.

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

  67. sliderule says:

    Lowetide,

    My favorite Eddie Shore story.

    Vern Pachal came out of Moos jaw junior signed with Shore and got 50 goals as an AHL rookie.

    Next years negotiations Shore wanted to cut his price by a couple of thousand.

    Pachal said screw you and went to university at U of A .led them to several national championships.

    Hockey back then was true servitude.

  68. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Cobb was more than an asshole. He belongs to the pantheon of great men that seem to exist only to torment moralists over the question of how such talent, verve and accomplishment can find its way into such a callous being. See also, Herod.

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

    Doesn’t just apply to athletes, either. Similar personalities dot the landscapes of the arts and the sciences (and don’t get me started on business or politics). Not just men, either, although it would seem a clear majority. Some of the biggest over-achievers being the biggest jerks. “Exceptional” can run well beyond that range of the spectrum where the fame and fortune are generated.

    The famous 20th century Swiss astronomer Fritz Zwicky — a notable bastard in his own right — used to refer to such an individual as a “spherical bastard”, because no matter how you looked at him, he was a bastard. Seems like a statement one could apply to Shore or Cobb, from what I’ve read about them.

  69. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Doesn’t just apply to athletes, either.

    No doubt. I thought I gave a nod to the general condition under the rubric “pantheon of great men” and through the nod to Herod (one of my personal favorites). My avatar, Romulus, is another stellar example.

    Schopenhauer is one that philosophers often mention because his misanthropy is near hilarious. Here’s a well known story of his cynicism:

    While in Berlin, Schopenhauer was named as a defendant in a lawsuit initiated by a woman named Caroline Marquet.[21] She asked for damages, alleging that Schopenhauer had pushed her. According to Schopenhauer’s court testimony, she deliberately annoyed him by raising her voice while standing right outside his door.[22] Marquet alleged that the philosopher had assaulted and battered her after she refused to leave his doorway. Her companion testified that she saw Marquet prostrate outside his apartment. Because Marquet won the lawsuit, Schopenhauer made payments to her for the next twenty years.[23] When she died, he wrote on a copy of her death certificate, Obit anus, abit onus (“The old woman dies, the burden is lifted”).[24]

    Thanks for the tip on Zwicky. Never heard of the chap. Like his metaphor.

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