RE 13-14 DEVAN DUBNYK: ALL THE YOUNG DUDES

In one way, Devan Dubnyk represents a major victory for the scouting department: after 20 years of wasting goalie draft picks, they finally scored in the first round of the 2004 entry draft. In another way, they’re not quite certain how large a victory this represents, and Dubnyk is now 139 games into his NHL career. How long will it take to turn the corner? WILL he turn the corner?

RE 13-14: 52, 130 2.50 .9206

  1. I’m not certain if these numbers are good or bad. This represents a good season, I think Dubnyk will be near the top 15 in EV save percentage, I’ve punished the Oilers a little on the PK based on uncertain personnel. I have no idea if it’ll work out that way, but am guessing there’s a period of defensive transition. I have him basically running in place in terms of overall SP, but that’s a pretty good place. 
  2. How many shots per game against? I have the Oilers at 31.5 shots against per 60 minutes this season, slight improvement from Dubnyk’s experience a year ago. That’s still high, but the Oilers are turning over team and coach–again–and I doubt they get it completely clamped down before March.
  3. Is this a playoff team? You’ll have to wait and see.
  4. Is this enough to get Dubnyk another contract? Yeah, probably similar numbers to the last deal. I maintain Dubnyk has a job as #1 until he loses a playoff game.
  5. Have you mentioned that to MacTavish? Yeah well, the GM does appear anxious to improve the position.
  6. Why is MacTavish down on Dubnyk? I think he looked at this team, with all of the stunning talent on the wings, and decided (rightly) to build up the middle. He probably asked himself if any of G, D and C were championship calibre today, and the answer was a resounding “no”, leading to the Schneider rumors.
  7. But why was MacT so public? Well, he was very open on pretty much everything, so I don’t think it should be considered anything other than state of the union. Dubnyk is part of the team that’s been losing all these seasons, if he can hang around for a post-season run and play well, I think he’ll be here for a long time.
  8. They hired a solid backup. Yes, and the best part is he’s known to Dubnyk. They’ve spent some time together before and it could be a great tandem.
  9. Any chance LaBarbera wins the starting job? Jonathan Willis wrote a nice piece on that subject, it’s something to watch as the season rolls along. I don’t think the coach will hesitate to switch out the goalie.
  10. I still have a hard time marrying MacT’s words to Dubnyk hanging around a long time. MacT: “the verdict is out on Devan. I’ve always believed that when you’re assessing goaltenders, if you have to ask the question you know the answer. The question would be, has Devan established himself as a number one goalie in the National Hockey League? And I still think it’s a valid question. So, I think that Devan, although he’s trending upwards in his numbers and played adequately for us this year, I still think, and I know Devan feels the same way, that there’s another level for him. From our standpoint, we’ll see that he can get to that level.
  11. That’s pretty damning. My feeling is that he could play exactly as well this coming season as last, and if the Oilers make the playoffs he’ll be viewed as someone who has turned the corner. For me, he’s already turned it. Dubnyk’s been trending in a good way for a couple of years. I’m not saying he’s Hasek, but Dubnyk is miles from being the problem.

  12. So, you disagree with MacT? Yes.

  13. Well there’s a first. Remember, he also said a few things later in that press conference about DD. MacT“I think Devan took a step this year. His numbers were good, on the year. I think he’s got further to go. To be a top level goaltender he’s got to play better. Not to say that goaltending was any reason we were in the situation we were in; he took a lot of good looks night in and night out, breakaways, shots from the slot. But he’s a guy who is still developing, still growing as a goaltender, so I have lots of faith in his ability to get there, but you’ve got to make the development happen. I think Devan going into the summer has really got a proper focus, he’s going to be around Edmonton, he’s going to put in a good summer of training and I think it’s going to have a huge benefit in his ability to perform next year.”
  14. So, they want that next step? Yes, I think so. MacT can’t come in here and give out these jobs forever to men who have been on an underperforming team. Dubnyk has been on failed clubs really forever, maybe he’s been ‘too long at the fair’ being beaten down ala Horcoff and Hemsky. I’m not buying that, but some may feel it’s a consideration.

  15. Where did he rank among NHL goalies last season? Tied for 10th overall SP with a .920, he was one of three goalies for non-playoff teams to make the top 10.

     

  16. What about his EV SP? Less impressive last season, he had a .922SP at evens and that made him the 25th best goalie by that metric (10+ starts).
  17. So, kind of porridge? I like him better than that, suspect the Oilers do too. I do beleive though that he needs to have a really strong season in order to stay. Edmonton will be very aggressive this calendar year in the goalie department–college, Europe, free agent NHLers, draft, trade–you name it, things are going to get interesting at the goalie position.
  18. Will they deal him this year? One would think there was another shoe to drop had the Oilers acquired Schneider, so we can assume there’s been a conversation. Dubnyk has value, I don’t really know what the return would be but there’s a player of note here and the Oilers would do well to make their decision on him and either sign him or deal him based on the result.
  19. Why this song? It’s one of my favorite Bowie songs, it’s a great tune to sing along and it’s fun, but the lyrics are dark and foreboding. That’s Dubnyk: this is his year to carry the news, good or bad.
  20. Does he make it? That’s why they play the games. I’ve always liked him a lot, so will be cheering madly.

 Devan Dubnyk 2010-11

  • Boxcars: 35gp, 2.71
  • SP: .916
  • WLT: 12-13-8
  • SP behind starter: Dubnyk was 26 points clear of the veteran

 Devan Dubnyk 2011-12

  • Boxcars: 42gp, 2.67
  • SP: .914
  • WLT: 20-20-3
  • SP behind starter: Dubnyk was the starter, 4 clear of NK

 Devan Dubnyk 2012-13

  • Boxcars: 38gp, 2.57
  • SP: .920
  • WLT: 14-16-6
  • SP behind starter: Dubnyk was the starter, 3 behind NK

ALL TIME GAMES PLAYED BY OILER GOALIES (DRAFT)

  1. Grant Fuhr 868
  2. Andy Moog 713
  3. Devan Dubnyk 139
  4. Jussi Markkanen 128
  5. Jeff Deslauriers 62

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41 Responses to "RE 13-14 DEVAN DUBNYK: ALL THE YOUNG DUDES"

  1. bookje says:

    Dubnyk’s performance this past year (~10 overall) and MacT’s criticisms leave me to believe that something about Dubnyks is frustrating for MacT and the coaching staff. From comments here and there about “learning what it takes to succeed” , I think it’s a Penner like situation where the player may be coasting a little, perhaps not staying after practices and so on.

    I don’t know this, it’s just a guess. It just seems that MacT feels like Dubnyk is not 100% Committed.

    It.may also be sideburns – a case where the player and GM both are fully committed individuals but express it in different ways. Maybe Dubnyk just needs to act more intense?

  2. Ducey says:

    Wow, 4 decimal places on the save %. The magic 8 ball is really working this morning, eh?

  3. Lowetide says:

    If I had to guess, it would be that the Oilers management has the age old ‘can’t make that big stop’ or ‘lets in too many softies’ mentality. The numbers are pretty damn good, actually.

    Still, I can’t get mad at them for wanting more. Christ, it’s like finding daylight at the bottom of a mine shaft.

  4. bookje says:

    As per the song – perfect choice.

  5. Ducey says:

    bookje:
    Dubnyk’s performance this past year (~10 overall) and MacT’s criticisms leave me to believe that something about Dubnyks is frustrating for MacT and the coaching staff.From comments here and there about “learning what it takes to succeed” , I think it’s a Penner like situation where the player may be coasting a little, perhaps not staying after practices and so on.

    I don’t know this, it’s just a guess.It just seems that MacT feels like Dubnyk is not 100% Committed.

    It.may also be sideburns – a case where the player and GM both are fully committed individuals but express it in different ways.Maybe Dubnyk just needs to act more intense?

    I think it may be no more complicated than DD seems to let in an easy one every second or third game. Then he stops 3 breakaways, but the softies tend to stick in people’s heads.

  6. bookje says:

    Lowetide:
    If I had to guess, it would be that the Oilers management has the age old ‘can’t make that big stop’ or ‘lets in too many softies’ mentality. The numbers are pretty damn good, actually.

    Still, I can’t get mad at them for wanting more. Christ, it’s like finding daylight at the bottom of a mine shaft.

    Agreed, you should always want more, but your strategies to get more have to be well thought out. Calling out a player in the media is great if it is part of a well thought out psychological plan to motivate the player. If its the only approach you know or if you are honestly just expressing your emotions, then it’s bad GMing.

    The soft goals thing drives me crazy! It’s like ‘clutch’ or the tooth fairy.

  7. Lowetide says:

    bookje: Agreed. And that WAS MacT’s fault re: Penner. He was (borrowing now from Lou Reed) Senselessly Cruel.

  8. bookje says:

    Ducey: I think it may be no more complicated than DD seems to let in an easy one every second or third game.Then he stops 3 breakaways, but the softies tend to stick in people’s heads.

    If you watch other large goalies they ‘seem’ to do the same. If Dubnyk stopped all the goals people ‘see’ as soft he would have the best save percentage in NHL history. So, basically you are saying he is the most talented goalie who has ever played, but he gets lazy and let’s in soft goals. Does that seem logical?

  9. Woodguy says:

    Why is MacTavish down on Dubnyk? I think he looked at this team, with all of the stunning talent on the wings, and decided (rightly) to build up the middle. He probably asked himself if any of G, D and C were championship calibre today, and the answer was a resounding “no”, leading to the Schneider rumors.

    Pretty much.

    I think MacT saw that Scheider was available and that quality of goalie isn’t on the market often, so made his pitch.

    I had no idea how good Schnider’s historical 5v5SV% was, but it put him in the top 4 in the NHL over the last 3 years imo (the other 3 were Lundqvist, Rask and Rinne….heady company)

    Note: I know his sample size is small, but its also spread out over 3 years which suggests that his skill level is repeatable.

    I posted this in one of the draft threads:

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2013/06/the-new-jersey-hair-splitting-convention.html/comment-page-1#comment-236101

    Since 5v5 SV% is the gold standard due to goalies’ inability to replicate 4v5 SV% year or year.

    DD’s 5v5 is ok, not great, not terrible, over they last 3 years:

    (Note: I use 20gp in 82 game seasons and 12 last year as the threshold as this represents 25% of a team’s games and weeds out some of the small sample stuff, but obviously not all as they are still small samples)

    12/13 .922 26th in NHL (I counted twice LT, maybe you missed one..I could still be wrong)
    11/12 .927 tied for 14th in NHL
    10/11 .921 tied for 28th in NHL

    Nothing knocking anyone’s socks off.

    I can see why MacT would try to upgrade if the option were available.

    By all reports everyone at the Oilers’ table were shocked at the NJD deal as the Oilers offered VAN more for Crawford.

  10. Ducey says:

    bookje,

    No. I have no problem with DD. .920 is .920.

    I am trying to explain what others might be concerned about.

  11. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide,
    You don’t think he lets in too many softies? I think he makes up for that by stealing games, but still, it’s frustrating when he loses focus and has those off nights. Fears of Marc-Andre Fleury. BTW, when I was hunting for the J. Schultz “wow” play, Dubnyk got a couple of rewinds from me. He had no business making some of those stops. His ability to get back into position and square to the shooter and be under control and calm, all before the shooter was ready to make the shot, was very impressive.

  12. Woodguy says:

    BTW, Labarbera’s 5v5SV% last 4 seasons:

    12/13
    15gp .925

    11/12
    19gp .908 (ugh)

    10/11
    17gp .926

    09/10
    17gp .932

  13. Lowetide says:

    Virginia: I’ve pretty much dismissed all the soft goals from my brain. SP is my temple when it comes to goaltenders.

    WG: I saw that LaBarbera stuff when looking at this series and preparing. I have him playing much more than originally because of it. That was a HELLUVA hire.

  14. bookje says:

    Ducey,

    Yep, actually your comment made that clear – mine did not. I was meaning ‘you’ with regards to those who buy in to the ‘soft goals’ argument.

  15. theres oil in virginia says:

    Woodguy:
    I had no idea how good Schnider’s historical 5v5SV% was, but it put him in the top 4 in the NHL over the last 3 years imo (the other 3 were Lundqvist, Rask and Rinne….heady company)

    Note: I know his sample size is small, but its also spread out over 3 years which suggests that his skill level is repeatable.

    Since 5v5 SV% is the gold standard due to goalies’ inability to replicate 4v5 SV% year or year.

    DD’s 5v5 is ok, not great, not terrible, over they last 3 years:

    Nothing knocking anyone’s socks off.

    I can see why MacT would try to upgrade if the option were available.

    This may be the answer to the riddle. Word on the street is that MacT is “advanced stats friendly”, right? And, I believe the advanced stats guys look at EV-SP as being a better indicator of a goalie’s quality of play, right? So MacT looks at these numbers as an indicator that Dubnyk needs to be better (like some of the advanced stats guys have also done – Willis at ON? I can’t remember who.)

  16. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide,
    Yeah, I agree with the SP part, and I try not to remember those softies either, but I have to admit they leave a general impression. Still, I try to balance it with the other parts of his game which also leave a (much better) general impression. Overall, I’m perfectly happy with Dubnyk as #1G, at least for the time being. If a free upgrade comes along, fine; but I don’t like the idea of spending assets to improve this position, when there are other, worser positions to improve…cough, C, cough. There’s also something appealing about the idea of your 1st Rd pick goalie sticking with you during successful playoff runs.

  17. RexLibris says:

    While I like Dubnyk, and believe he is a starting goaltender today, I also understand MacTavish’s claims about improving that position.

    I think one needs to objectively assess the best position by depth for each player on the roster and then work to move that player to that position.

    For instance, I have argued with Flames fans that, while Mikael Backlund is a nice young player, the Flames need to try and get to the point where he is playing 3rd line C. Same with Dubnyk and the Oilers – if he could be our backup (even if only until such time as he could be traded for a more affordable option) then it would mean the team is in that much better shape.

    An example of the above that is currently developing in actual fact is the situation on the RW. Eberle may or may not be a 1st line RW, but the fact is that he can be our 2nd line RW once Yakupov establishes himself on the 1st line.

    Another situation that may develop this season is if Hall makes the successful conversion to center. Nugent-Hopkins becomes the 2nd line C and, as Martha Stewart would say, that is a good thing.

    This was the secret to Pronger’s time here.

    That kind of depth simply cannot be overstated.

  18. bookje says:

    theres oil in virginia:
    Lowetide,
    You don’t think he lets in too many softies?I think he makes up for that by stealing games, but still, it’s frustrating when he loses focus and has those off nights.Fears of Marc-Andre Fleury.BTW, when I was hunting for the J. Schultz “wow” play, Dubnyk got a couple of rewinds from me.He had no business making some of those stops.His ability to get back into position and square to the shooter and be under control and calm, all before the shooter was ready to make the shot, was very impressive.

    There are two explainations for the ‘soft goals’ theory.

    Theory 1 – the observers who think DD lets in about 1 soft goal every second game due to problems with focus are correct – he does let in soft goals much more so than other number 1 goalies in the game. Let’s look at the numbers for last year.

    Dubnyk stopped 1042 of 1132 stops last year for a Save% of 0.920 which resulted in him being #14 in the league.

    If Dubnyk made 20 more saves on those ‘softies’ as critics argue he should have, he would have had a 0.938 which would have made him #1 in the NHL and would have had him be #2 in the NHL this year and having had him record the third best save percentage in NHL history for a goalie. So, by this theory Dubnyk is one of the most talented NHL goalies to have ever played the game, but he gets lazy and lets in soft goals.

    Theory 2 – ALL goalies let pucks squeeze through their pads every so often, they let pucks from the red line bounce past them once a year, they get caught out of position, they let floaters bounce off their blocker and in, etc. Oiler fans care more about their own goalie and thus place more emphasis on these goals when they are against their own goalie. Also, large positional goalies are going to look less mobile and less impressive on ‘soft goals’ than acrobatic goalies who would have let the same exact goal go in while doing a backflip and waiving their glove at it. So, while they never let ‘soft looking’ goals in, they let in just as many goals.

    Occam’s razor suggests explanation number 2 is more likely.

    Look, none of this suggests that DD doesn’t have room for improvement. He may need to work on aspects of the game such as squeezing his pads better or watching his glove side more. He may also be a bit lazy in practice or something (I don’t know but MacT seems to be alluding to something). However, the notion that these goals are somehow ‘soft’ just doesn’t make sense.

    As per the Psychological angles that these ‘soft’ goals some make the team sad and cause them to start trying, these are the kind of things that people say about losing teams. Losing teams are losing teams because they don’t have enough talent, a balanced line up, etc. They get disheartened because of that. When a goalie in Pittsburg or Boston lets in a ‘soft’ goal and loses the game, the fans don’t adopt this single excuse theory (the team got sad when Tuukka let in a soft goal), they realize that the loss is based upon the entirety of how the game was played.

    That’s not to say having a bad goalie doesn’t affect team moral, however, a goalie who is #14 in the league in save percentage despite having an AHL defence is not a bad goalie. NHL players are smart enough to know this.

    Now, I look forward to many of you absolutely ignoring this logic and continuing to talk about ‘soft goals’ as long as the Oilers keep losing. Once the Oilers start winning (with no change in DD save percentage), I also look forward to you talking about him as “one of the best goalies in the game” and about how he “steals games” for the team.

  19. Andropod says:

    Lowetide:
    Virginia: I’ve pretty much dismissed all the soft goals from my brain. SP is my temple when it comes to goaltenders.

    WG: I saw that LaBarbera stuff when looking at this series and preparing. I have him playing much more than originally because of it. That was a HELLUVA hire.

    If he is going to let in any goals at all, are there any goals that are better to let in than other goals? Is it better that he never lets in a soft goal, but where most of his goals are perhaps 5 hole, or glove side high etc. etc.?
    As much as I have doubted Dubs after seeing those softies let in, I’m becoming more comfortable with the occasional lapse of concentration, than a place people can shoot and consistently score.
    Because, if all Dubs has to do, is tighten up on his concentration, then could that be why he has done so well in his international competition? – lets in less soft goals, and keeps pretty much everything else out? Exascerbated by his cool, unflappable attitude, which may stir memories of Pancake PEnner in Mac T’s brain? Is he going to lose his job because Eakins cant get him to display a sense of urgency?

  20. bookje says:

    Just to add, if DD finds another level via dedication to the game or whatever (which I think MacT is seeking), his save percentage will improve, but I would not anticipate any change in the percentage of ‘soft’ vs ‘hard’ goals, but rather an overall marginal improvement in the number of pucks stopped.

  21. jp says:

    theres oil in virginia: This may be the answer to the riddle.Word on the street is that MacT is “advanced stats friendly”, right?And, I believe the advanced stats guys look at EV-SP as being a better indicator of a goalie’s quality of play, right?So MacT looks at these numbers as an indicator that Dubnyk needs to be better (like some of the advanced stats guys have also done – Willis at ON?I can’t remember who.)

    Sounds plausible. Chasing Schneider and signing Labarbara certainly also fits with MacT chasing high EVSP.

  22. gd says:

    Based on anything I’ve seen both stat-wise and eyeball test, I think DD and Crawford are pretty equivalent. I feel confident in saying DD would have won the cup if he was the Hawks goalie last year.

    Teams have won Stanley Cups with every type of goalie style and personality, other than really crappy. The Oilers won four Cups with a goalie so laid back he makes Dubnyk look like Leo Duroucher.

    My only concern with DD is that MacT gets him resigned to a reasonable price and term contract. If he can’t then it is up to management to get a Hiller/Halak or finding a hidden gem in Europe

  23. theres oil in virginia says:

    bookje,
    I more-or-less agree with all you’ve stated above. Possible exception is the objection to the term ‘soft’. Maybe you’d rather use ‘easy’ or ‘stoppable’, but the idea is the same anyway. There isn’t any doubt that every goalie is plagued by this, statistically speaking you can’t stop ‘em all, even the easy ones. However, I don’t have a good notion of whether Dubnyk lets in more ‘stoppable’ pucks than the average top-half NHL goalie, but you’re right that the ones he let in stick in the mind more than the ones the opponent goalies let in. It’s human nature, but that’s really the point. There must be an explanation for why MacT has made an effort to upgrade the position. After reading the above post by Woodguy, I tend to think that the answer is related to EV-SP, but maybe there’s something else. I hope it’s not Penner syndrome.

    It’s important (to me at least) that you understand the difference between my position and ‘The Dubnyk basher’s’ position. I like Dubnyk just fine, but I don’t think he’s Top 10 either.

    Another thought (I’m limited to about one every few minutes or so): perhaps the Dubnyk ‘soft’ goals are magnified in Oiltown because they haven’t been good enough to overcome them most nights. In order for the Oilers to win, pretty much everything had to fall just right.

    Ooh, ooh, another thought (hah, a bonus!): There’s also a difference between letting in an occasional ‘softy’ and having a game that gets you pulled from the net. So, this one works in Dubnyk’s favor in a pretty big way. I’ve see guys like Fleury let in the series of goals which gets them pulled (and often in a big game). I remember only one game where Dubnyk got pulled for that reason (although I don’t remember which game it was).

  24. bookje says:

    Woodguy,

    That makes sense. A rational upgrade based upon actual performance differences. I forget the rumour of what the Oilers were offering, but it seemed very expensive for Schneider. It may be one of those trades the Oilers will look back upon and be happy about not making. Some goalies carry that performance to their new team, others do not.

  25. wheatnoil says:

    bookje:
    Woodguy,

    That makes sense.A rational upgrade based upon actual performance differences.I forget the rumour of what the Oilers were offering, but it seemed very expensive for Schneider.It may be one of those trades the Oilers will look back upon and be happy about not making.Some goalies carry that performance to their new team, others do not.

    We have to be careful about the “what the Oilers were offering” narrative. There is conflicting reports about it. The talk of the return was the 7th overall (now Nurse), a 2nd (now 3000 later round draft picks), and a young prospect. However, Stauffer and Rishaug are insistent that the Oilers did NOT offer that. They insist that was the Canucks ASK and the Oilers turned them down. However, when the rumour came out about the deal, the story through the blogosphere became that the Oilers offered this and the Canucks turned it down.

    We don’t know the truth either way and now it doesn’t really matter, but we don’t necessarily know that MacT offered that much for Schneider.

  26. wheatnoil says:

    bookje:
    If Dubnyk made 20 more saves on those ‘softies’ as critics argue he should have, he would have had a 0.938 which would have made him #1 in the NHL and would have had him be #2 in the NHL this year and having had him record the third best save percentage in NHL history for a goalie.So, by this theory Dubnyk is one of the most talented NHL goalies to have ever played the game, but he gets lazy and lets in soft goals.

    I agree with your overall argument and think that theory 2 is most likely. However, there is an option number 3.

    Theory 3 would be that ALL goalies let in soft goals but Dubnyk lets them in at a slightly higher rate than other above average NHL starters. If the criticism is that Dubnyk lets in a soft goal every 2 games (keeping in mind that we tend to remember soft goals, so the reality may be him letting in a soft goal every 3-4 games), how many soft goals does the above average NHL netminder let in? One every 6 games? Every 8? Thus, over the 48 game lockout season, Dubnyk might let in 20 soft goals, but the above average NHL starter lets in 10, which would give Dubnyk a .929 save percentage, buoyed by an above average PK save percentage, and would make him among the elite goaltenders in the league.

    I still think your Theory 2 is most likely, just thought I’d throw out another plausible option. We don’t really have any way of tracking “soft goals” and even if we did, we have no way of comparing them to other goalies’ soft goals. I remember the Oilers scoring some soft ones through the year, I wonder if those teams think their goalie lets in too many softies?

  27. G Money says:

    I am firmly in MacT’s camp on this one. Dubie was not the problem last year, but he wasn’t the solution either. Dubie deserves a chance to prove he’s number one, next year, but from a team perspective, being able to get an upgrade (for the right price) *would* help this team.

    In support of those points:

    Pro-Dubnyk: like everyone else, Dubie’s stats, particularly EVSP, regressed last year under Krueger – but by eye he was a better goalie last year. I cannot prove it was the “easy goal against” ™ system for sure, but when you give up as many shots and five-bell chances as the Oilers did last year, it would be logical to think that EVSP would suffer.

    Anti-Dubynk: Dubie’s EVSP stats are not as good as he is given credit for. I took Vollman’s goalie stats and sorted by the EVSP for goalies who faced at least 401 shots. Dubie is 34th on that list. If Dubie’s EVSP had been the average for a top 10 goalie (0.937), he would have stopped 42 more goals! Ask yourself whether stopping 42 more EV goals would have helped the team last year or not.

    For the record, the top 10 EVSP goalies (min 401) shots:

    Anderson
    Bobrovsky
    Vokoun
    Rask
    Howard
    Lundqvist
    Hiller
    Lehner
    Crawford
    Schneider

  28. Logan91 says:

    I personally like Dubnyk. Sure he lets in those extremely horrible goals sometimes, but that happens to every goalie. He did exactly have the best defence helping him out either.

    He’s only 27 (which is still pretty young), and he gets better every year. He’s going to want to prove to the organization that he belongs this season, and we’re going to see him play very well.

    Here’s to hoping he can silence his critics and take the team to the playoffs!

  29. edwards_daddy says:

    At the moment DD is a second tier goalie.
    If we up-grade him for an elite goalie, what is it going to cost?
    Probably one of our elite youngsters, with probably twice the cap-hit of DD.
    So, if the new elite ‘Niemi’ puts up a SP of 0.928 – we are getting about 11 goals per season using DD’s workload from last season.
    Would we trade some of our special talent, and 3m in cap space, for 11 goals a season?

  30. Jesse says:

    This is certainly one of the main things that has always bothered me about MacT: his calling out of players in the media. It first bothered me when he did it with Salo — my all time favorite, who, while his play did decline at the end, was one of the most humble and classy guys to ever be an Oiler IMO.

    Some players might respond well to being publicly embarrassed like that, but as a teacher I personally appreciate Eakins’ approach of learning how each individual responds to different kinds of motivation rather than expecting all players to respond positively to the same approach

    I think it’s worth looking at how MacT has handled difficult goaltending situations in the past. I remember that roulette wheel of Markkannen, Conklin, and Morrison that eventually resulted in events like Conklin being yanked before the shootout.

    My attention kind of waned a bit during the Roloson/Garon period, but for some reason I recall the handling of that situation less than ideal as well.

    What does everyone else think re: MacT and goaltending adversity?

  31. striatic says:

    Jesse: What does everyone else think re: MacT and goaltending adversity?

    i think he won’t be satisfied until the Oilers have a HHoF candidate goaltender.

    until then, expect lots of rumours and dissatisfaction.

  32. Hammers says:

    Goalkeeping will be the difference in making the playoffs . They both need very good to excellent years for us to gain a spot . If there just good we won’t make it .

  33. prairieschooner says:

    How much better does Dubnyk have to be to get Mac T off his back?

  34. striatic says:

    prairieschooner:
    How much better does Dubnyk have to be to get Mac T off his back?

    Vezina calibre. at least.

    seriously.

    right now Dubnyk, in the common parlance, “gives his team a chance to win every night”, which is lovely. MacTavish will not be satisfied until he has a goalie that outright steals games on a regular basis, regardless the play of the team that surrounds him.

  35. Rebilled says:

    Jesse,

    Calling out players also doesn’t help their trade value. ‘All Dustin Penner does is eat pancakes. Does anybody want him?’

    Telling the media you want ‘this type’ of player, or even worse, ‘this specific player’ seems like amateur hour to me as well. Get on ‘the phone’. Next stop. rocket science!

    Sail on Nicolai! This is the best goalie tandem we’ve had in a long time. It’s actually pretty damn good.

    Oh, Eakins just called, he told me to ‘book the playoffs’? He’s been doing wind sprints with Smytty in the Himalayans all summer. #94 playing for a contract to make this team next year makes me kinda smile…even if he is an ol’ hoser.

  36. whale says:

    DD + puck handling = 5-10 goals against per year. This accounts for half of his ‘soft’ count.

  37. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    Khaira going to Silvertips TC, so there’s news

    Looks like I was wrong about him going to the AHL.

    Surprising move as the WHL is a lesser league than NCAA. I guess Michigan Tech changing conferences is a huge deal in terms of quality of comp.

    Id guess that in order to get him to leave the NCAA the Oilers needed to sign him so he could get his signing bonus.

    In regards to the characterization of the CHL as a lesser league than NCAA, I have 2 reasons for saying so:

    1) Players are older in the NCAA, and age difference from 17-23 is massive in terms of strength. Simply put, its tougher to play against men.

    2) Rob Vollman in Hockey Prospectus has the NHLE of these leagues as:

    a) AHL .44
    b) NCAA .41
    c) CHL .29

    So points from the NCAA translate the NHL almost as well as the AHL, but the CHL is miles behind.

    Makes sense. In the AHL and NCAA you are playing a high level against men. In the CHL you are playing a high level against 17-20 year olds.

    He had a very good rookie season and I thought he might translate to the AHL well, and there are jobs in OKC to be had.

    I know that the OKC roster is full, but if the kid earns one, he earns one.

    Its pro hockey, not patty cake.

  38. Kitchener says:

    If Everett plays twice the games as NCAA, this is consistent with an earlier interview where JJ said he was glad to ‘just concentrate on hockey’ this upcoming year.

    The WHL is arguably a better or poorer league in terms of level, but it seems to be clearly superior in the sense that JJ’s life will be hockey 24-7.

    I wonder if being closer to home (90 minute drive from Surrey) was a factor too. If that helps him settle in and spend a year developing on the ice, great.

  39. Kitchener says:

    Back to the topic…

    The ball is in DD’s court and everyone wants him to nail it. The nature of his contract and the new coach/GM combo likely make this a 1-year audition.

  40. Wolfpack says:

    I have always cheered for Dubnyk and will continue to do so, but he has got to get better in OT and shoot-outs. Before the start of last season I took a look and the Oilers were mid-pack or better in terms of shoot-out scoring in 11-12 but Dubnyk was bottom third in the league. I am too lazy to check out last year’s numbers but by my eye the Oilers left a lot of points on the table in extra time.
    If the Oilers are going to be a playoff team this year in their new murderer’s row division they are going to need to scramble for every point they can get. The means they need to do better in OT and shoot-outs.
    It worries me that Dubnyk has never been strong in those areas.

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