RE 13-14 JASON LABARBERA: STRANGERS WHEN WE MEET

Jason LaBarbera has been a player of interest for the Oilogosphere since Tyler Dellow began waxing poetic sometime last decade. Oiler fans who read the blogs are very used to an intelligent expose on available players, but we’re not used to the town team actually procuring those players. What’s up, doc?

RE 13-14: 30, 76 2.53 .9196

  1. This looks very similar to Dubnyk. I’m not sure that DD is the better goalie, you can make a case for LaBarbera as this generation’s Dwayne Roloson. 
  2. Oh Christ, did Bergeron fall on him too? Bergeron didn’t fall on Roloson, that would have been less damaging. He pushed ANDREW LADD onto Roloson, which made it much much worse. Anyway, Roloson’s career as a starter didn’t take off until he was 32–JL is 33 now. You never know. LaBarbera has been posting some consistent numbers for years now, maybe all he needs is a chance.
  3. That’s not how it works for the Oilers. JL will come here, shoot lights out and then sign elsewhere for big money. Yes, well point made. But, this is going to be a nice team to backstop for the next few years. This is like going from Gilles Meloche playing goal for the Seals to, well, Meloche playing goal for the North Stars.
  4. If my math is right, you have the Oilers giving up 206 goals. Yes, plus another 12 EN goals. The total is 218 GA, which means the Oilers are slated to be +13, as I have them scoring 231 goals overall.
  5. A dozen EN goals? It isn’t a crazy number and honestly it could be more based on Eakins style. Jeff Veillette: Down by two with a powerplay with ten minutes left in the game? Six attackers. It’s bound to happen once or twice a season, and pulls closer to the clock but still rather early are common in games where the team is behind.
  6. Is +13 a playoff team? The Oilers GF-GA per game is 2.82-2.66, which means they’re improved in GF and in goals against per game from last season (based on the RE). Last year, the Oilers were 2.56-2.73 so most of their improvement (based on my estimation) is going to come from the young impact forwards and Justin Schultz. But there’s also defensive improvement here.

  7. Shouldn’t the defense be much better this year? Well, a couple of things. First, at 5×5 this team was an absolute disaster as reflected by Travis Yost’s insane rolling corsi graph, so they could improve a lot and still be poor. Second, I do think there was a wobbly coaching technique or two in there, but we’re talking reasonable here. A massive change in own zone minutes could very well improve this team by more than I’m estimating, but I don’t think it’s reasonable to assume it happens overnight.
  8. Give me the reasons you believe the GA won’t improve that much. I have the GA improving by just 6 goals, but the EV GA improving by several. The EN GA is increased (from 9 to 12) and the PK is punished because of turnover (this could be wrong, maybe Eakins has a terrific system–but we can’t assume that) in personnel. I have the Oilers giving up 50 5×4 and 5×3 and 4×3 goals in total, plus 3 PS goals. So, their EV GAA is 1.87, compared to 2.00 last season–and that’s using 82 games as the full meal as opposed to minutes played. That’s a nice improvement at even strength.
  9. Why do you hate the PK? First, the Oilers PK works a lot. Last season, the club was shorthanded 175 times, that was 5th most in the league. However, they only gave up 29 goals against, giving them the 9th best PK in the league. This summer, they’ve flushed Horcoff, Belanger, Smithson, Petrell from the group and we don’t know if they can cobble together an effective group from the current roster.
  10. Gordon will help. Oh yes, he’s excellent. I have him replacing Horcoff, but there’s no one really for Belanger. My list for PK is Gordon, Smyth, Gagner and Jones, plus Lander.
  11. Gagner? This graph suggests Gagner might be a candidate for increased PK time although as always this is an extremely small sample. Either way, the Oilers get punished a little on the PK this season, but they do improve at evens–maybe not as much as we’d like, but again this is reasonable we’re talking here. Maybe Eakins uses Hall or Eberle or Nuge, who knows?
  12. You know, we haven’t talked about LaBarbera much. No, that’s the trouble with the RE, the backup goalie is the final part of the equation. I do think he’s a really good signing, have to say the Oilers did some good things this summer.
  13. Why hasn’t he played more? Consistency was the problem in previous seasons, but he’s been good the last several years. There are complaints about lateral movement and soft goals.
  14. That’s the DD complaint list! Yes, big goalies look slow, just like big forwards. The results have been good for quite some time, however. He’s probably an underrated player by plenty at this point in his career.
  15. How will we know if JL is taking over the position? Well, if he gets a lot of starts, that’s a clue.
  16. Such a dink! Also, if MacT mentions Roloson that’ll be a tell.
  17. Why this song? Because rechauffe is such a cool word and the lyric fits. Plus it’s subtle and this was a subtle signing.
  18. So that’s it for the RE? Yeah.
  19. Do you enjoy doing these? Yes. Quite.
  20. You missed about 50 Bowie songs. It’s incredible. Honestly. I could have done two per player. Barely touched 1980+.
  21. I guess it’s knowing your audience. Ass.

 JASON LABARBERA 2010-11

  • Boxcars: 17, 3.26
  • SP: .909
  • WLT: 7-6-3
  • SP behind starter: trailed Bryzgalov by 12 points

 JASON LABARBERA 2011-12

  • Boxcars: 19gp, 2.54
  • SP: .912
  • WLT: 3-9-3
  • SP behind starter: trailed Mike Smith by 18 points

 JASON LABARBERA 2012-13

  • Boxcars: 15, 2.64
  • SP: .923
  • WLT: 4-6-2
  • SP behind starter: 13 points clear of Mike Smith

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34 Responses to "RE 13-14 JASON LABARBERA: STRANGERS WHEN WE MEET"

  1. Woodguy says:

    Don’t see any numbers in the post LT, so the first question is kinda out there.

  2. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    “So that’s it for the RE? Yeah.”

    I was wondering about Bachman. So I looked to see how many GPs our 3rd 3rd/4th Gs year over year have had since the lockout:

    2013: Danis 3gp
    2012: Danis 1gp
    2011: Gerber 3gp
    2010: DD 19; NK 18 (who’s 2, who’s 3?)
    2009: Garon 15gp; JD 10 (who’s 2, who’s 3?)
    2008: Young 2gp
    2007: 0
    2006: MM 21gp; DR 19
    2005: lockout

    09 and 10 the 3rd G basically plays the same number of games as the 2G.

    It looks like in years where goaltending is basically not terrible the 3rd G only appears in around 3 GPs, barring injury.

    Is that reasonable?

    Bachman 3gp or less?

    (of course, games “played” as the backup on the bench don’t count)

  3. Lowetide says:

    WG: They are there. Honest. :-)

    32, 81, 2.53 .9196

  4. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    WG: They are there. Honest.

    32, 81, 2.53 .9196

    Ahhhh, I was looking for his last 3 years of gp, SV% etc.

  5. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy: Ahhhh, I was looking for his last 3 years of gp, SV% etc.

    Ah, i don’t do that (Although I could). Why don’t I? Okay!

  6. Jonathan Willis says:

    If Matt Greene hadn’t been playing pylon, Ladd wouldn’t have been Bergeron’s problem.

  7. Lowetide says:

    Jonathan Willis:
    If Matt Greene hadn’t been playing pylon, Ladd wouldn’t have been Bergeron’s problem.

    Amen to that. Why Greene was even on the roster remains a fucking fucking fuck fuck mystery.

  8. jfry says:

    Woah, lt, your kids read this blog sometimes!

  9. Lowetide says:

    jfry:
    Woah, lt, your kids read this blog sometimes!

    Yeah well, that play was a knife to the heart. I’ll never get over that series. Not ever. It’s like a taunting asshole brother, there to piss you off whenever it wants. And Carolina. CAROLINA. Aw, hell.

  10. Big Dan says:

    LT, I thought these were reasonable expectations whereby you temper your projections a bit. I think you are being very optimistic about Labarbera playing 32 games to Dubnyk’s 52.

    I think it will be more like Dubnyk 66, Labarbera 20, and Bachman with a couple at bats.

    Labarbera was not a sought after goalie by NHL GM’s. He only signed for $1M when they could have got a 1A like Jose Theodore for cheap. I like the fact he’s a buddy of Dubnyk and his experience (along with Frederic Chabot, who’s done a much better job than Peeters) will help the development of Dubnyk. I hope it works.

    My concern is Labarbera’s stats have been padded by playing for Dave Tippett. They should add an asterix to any goalie with “played for Dave Tippett”. He’ll be an ok backup, think Fred Brathwaite, but I can’t see him coming close to challenging Dubnyk or getting over 30 starts.

    I hope I’m wrong. But I foresee a Jaroslav Halak type being a UFA signing next summer anyways, Devan Dubnyk becoming a $2M backup after this season, and Jason Labarbera roaming the woods like a Jocelyn Thibault at the end of his career.

  11. Woodguy says:

    Big Dan,

    The “Tippett Effect” has been looked into and basically debunked:

    http://nhlnumbers.com/2012/8/11/the-dave-tippett-effect

  12. "Steve Smith" says:

    I liked Roloson a lot, and was as displeased as anyone when Bergeron took him out. But I don’t think history should forget that the team, including Roloson, was already in full melt-down mode in game one by the time it happened.

  13. "Steve Smith" says:

    Additionally, am I reading this right that your RE for games played by goaltenders is 84, meaning that there are only two games where both play? Isn’t that unusually low? Last year, if I’m reading it right, there were five such games in a shortened season (total goaltenders’ games played 53, in a 48 game season). In 2005-2006, by memory, there were 81.

  14. Lowetide says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    Additionally, am I reading this right that your RE for games played by goaltenders is 84, meaning that there are only two games where both play?Isn’t that unusually low?Last year, if I’m reading it right, there were five such games in a shortened season (total goaltenders’ games played 53, in a 48 game season).In 2005-2006, by memory, there were 81.

    No, that’s a mistake. The total should be 82. Let me change that.

  15. jp says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    Additionally, am I reading this right that your RE for games played by goaltenders is 84, meaning that there are only two games where both play?Isn’t that unusually low?Last year, if I’m reading it right, there were five such games in a shortened season (total goaltenders’ games played 53, in a 48 game season).In 2005-2006, by memory, there were 81.

    The missing games are for Bachman maybe? Even though he apparently isn’t worthy of a TC hopeful post…

  16. Lowetide says:

    there. Fixed. The Oilers GF-GA should have been 231-218, but I screwed it up. So, improvement on both sides of the ball, my sincere apologies.

  17. jake70 says:

    Lowetide: Yeah well, that play was a knife to the heart. I’ll never get over that series. Not ever. It’s like a taunting asshole brother, there to piss you off whenever it wants. And Carolina. CAROLINA. Aw, hell.

    What I found so irritating was winning that cup might not have changed the fortunes of the team from 2007- present. Meaning Pronger, Peca, Spacek were all leaving anyway, and the Smyth deal in 07 probably would have happened. The rebuild would have likely taken place leading to the talent procurement via drafting #1 x 3 that’s taken place. So we would have seen the rebuild that many wanted for a while, at the same time adding shiny new Stanley #6 to the collection. What did happen was Katz buying team, and Tambellini taking over as GM, had these not happened, maybe the path forward would have been different (ie..no tearing it down).

    Agree with Steve Smith, that game was well into tilting against the Oilers before Roloson went down. Do the Oilers win 4 games after losing game 1 if he is not hurt? Maybe.

  18. Lowetide says:

    Jake: No, game one was the series imo. The boys gave it a valiant effort but they didn’t get it done. Win game one? I think G6 has a monument in front of Rexall by now.

  19. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    there. Fixed. The Oilers GF-GA should have been 231-218, but I screwed it up. So, improvement on both sides of the ball, my sincere apologies.

    You better be sorry!

    Step it up or else we won’t…..ummmmm…..ahhhhh….. enjoy the plethora of thoughtful free content you deliver!!

    Ya, that’s it.

    Make your free stuff perfect dammit!

  20. maudite says:

    When the goalie that shows up at the trade deadline , with a bottle full of lightening packed up for the playoffs, goes down game 1 of the finals; and you still almost pull off that series; hard to imagine it not being extremely likely we would have not been going mental at a parade downtown, if that had not occurred. Yeah you can’t say for sure but man he easily could have stoked you another game.

    “Steve Smith”:
    I liked Roloson a lot, and was as displeased as anyone when Bergeron took him out.But I don’t think history should forget that the team, including Roloson, was already in full melt-down mode in game one by the time it happened.

  21. bendelson says:

    Big Dan,

    You expect DD to play 66 games this year and then become a 2M dollar back-up next year?
    Expecting a meltdown? This type of prediction would come complete with an Oilers 2014 lottery pick I would suppose…

    Ug.

  22. FastOil says:

    Lowetide: Yeah well, that play was a knife to the heart. I’ll never get over that series. Not ever. It’s like a taunting asshole brother, there to piss you off whenever it wants. And Carolina. CAROLINA. Aw, hell.

    “Steve Smith”:
    I liked Roloson a lot, and was as displeased as anyone when Bergeron took him out.But I don’t think history should forget that the team, including Roloson, was already in full melt-down mode in game one by the time it happened.

    Agreed, that was an awful day. I couldn’t watch the game for very long. As a young guy I watched the 80′s team and slipped right back into that mode – I could not accept that they were likely going to lose, and not playing well at all.

    SS, very true. I felt the team had been fading and losing consistency leading into the final. The team played over their heads throughout and must have been whipped and pretty beat up, and there was a lot of luck too that perhaps ran out.

    For me a lot of impatience with the team is linked to that spring, getting back there, and seeing that it doesn’t take superstars as much as depth and quality. Thankfully MacT has increased the tempo of management.

    Still I would like him to rock the boat and acquire the top 2 D that is missing and get some bottom 6 quality, but a good start none the less.

  23. maudite says:

    I like the majority of his moves as far as the back half goes. Everyone keeps talking about top pairing d man like this is a realistically acquire able asset. I highly doubt it is. Look at premiums paid for the ufa 3-6 vets this off season. Judging by draft day, I think he put the work in to go via trade route for d upgrades, determine price was far too costly and then decided to string together a handful of low cost bets. D that can put the puck on our young stars sticks effectively was biggest detriment last year overall. While we will see our fair share of breakdowns and missed assignments, I think offensively we stand to be far more effective. The d by committee approach stressing mobile, adept puck movers could really work out if they find the right pairings.

    Whitney put points up and a pretty solid rate strictly on passing ability. If we have close to that level of passing out of new corps from several options, without the simple game plan of short chips past defender x guaranteeing offensive zone possession in scoring position, we should not be surprised if the results are a net positive.

  24. FastOil says:

    maudite,

    It’s a matter of being willing to part with a good enough player. If you’re always bargain hunting like Pajaarvi’s deal, then no.

    Eberle and the 2014 1st + would get some attention. To me this is the kind of deal that takes teams over the top. The D is passable but weak, same for the bottom 6. They can’t be left so and the team expected to contend.

  25. striatic says:

    maudite: I like the majority of his moves as far as the back half goes. Everyone keeps talking about top pairing d man like this is a realistically acquire able asset.

    depends on what you mean by “top pairing d man”.

    if you mean “elite, top 15 d man in the NHL”, then no, this is no longer realistically acquirable without trading one of the 1st overalls, or maybe just maybe Eberle. there was a shot at picking up Bouwmeester as a UFA next summer but now that the blues signed him, the “top 15 d man” route is closed short of a major, core depleting trade.

    now, if you you mean “upgrade over Smid/Petry”, there are are quite a few UFA options next summer, even if half of the quality guys elect to extend rather than go for the UFA payday.

    in the “30 and under age range” there are guys like Phaneuf, Pitkanen, Quincey, Hjalmarsson, Girardi, Greene, Niskanen, Nikitin, Emelin, Stralman.

    2014 is still a very good UFA crop when it comes to defense, unlike 2013 which was foreseeably paltry a long way out.

    the trick is, seeing who steps up this year, and who shakes loose in the summer.

    Hemsky’s money will go to raises for RNH and Schultz, but the projected cap increase will allow the Oilers to take a shot at someone for immediate help next summer. Coupled with prospects like Klefbom and Nurse, even a single d man better than Smid/Petry could lead to some serious defensive depth starting in 2014.

  26. Big Dan says:

    bendelson,

    Well Bendelsen, what I think could happen is the Oilers are going to miss the playoffs by one point after an impressive season. Dubnyk will let in bad goals at bad times (like Salo in his last full year) during the do-or-die games.

    Or the Oilers will just make it in and Dubnyk will get shelled in the playoffs.

    Either way, Dubnyk will prove to be a quality goalie that isn’t good enough to be a clear cut #1 but better than a backup. I don’t think he will have as strong a save percentage as last year because opponents have a year of history to find his weaknesses. It will be ok (maybe .913?).

    After this year, the Oilers will aim higher than just being competitive or just making the playoffs. In order to do so, they’re going to need a goalie they can count on to take them to the next level.

  27. jake70 says:

    Lowetide:
    Jake: No, game one was the series imo. The boys gave it a valiant effort but they didn’t get it done. Win game one? I think G6 has a monument in front of Rexall by now.

    I think you are saying if they win game 1, Roloson hurt or not, they win series…….and……..if they lose game 1, Roloson hurt or not, they lose the series? You are probably right. But on the other hand, after that game 6 performance, how could you bet against them? (just watching some hilites (lo-lites) of game 7 again, uggh.

  28. LMHF#1 says:

    Lowetide:
    Jake: No, game one was the series imo. The boys gave it a valiant effort but they didn’t get it done. Win game one? I think G6 has a monument in front of Rexall by now.

    When Pronger scored on the PS, it should have been done. They gave it back.

    Thing is, if they sweep 3 and 4 at home, it is the SJ series all over again.

    They hadn’t gone to 7 in the first 3 rounds. People forget that.

  29. FastOil says:

    striatic,

    What they really need is a RHD to play above Petry, a little stronger player. I wonder if they feel JS is that guy, in which case they’ll stand pat, maybe take a shot at a UFA as you said. I think JS is great, but I’m not sure if he’s strong enough (physically and 3 zones) to be a dominant first pairing type, which I hope is what they want.

    I do think one of the prospect LHD will likely be at least close, but the right side not so much.

  30. Numenius says:

    LT, one thing to remember about goalies next year is that the pads are slightly smaller. This may have an influence on save percentages and so would affect what makes for reasonable expectations.

  31. striatic says:

    FastOil: I think JS is great, but I’m not sure if he’s strong enough (physically and 3 zones) to be a dominant first pairing type, which I hope is what they want.

    that’s why J. Schultz will get paired with a BIG LHD down the road.

    Smid or Nurse. big guys to take up the slack so that Schultz can operate more in the Letang mould.

    i still think picking up a top pairing D man over summer 2014 should be a goal though.in case J. Schultz turns out to be more of a Yandle than a Letang.

  32. striatic says:

    basically, if Petry ends up being your third pairing RHD behind Schultz and a Petry improvement, things will be going spectacularly well even without the top 15 super elite Chara, Weber, Doughty, Letang type.

    an Edler type will do.

  33. Lois Lowe says:

    For me G7 was the killer, not G1. As a younger fan of the Oilers, who only knew the sad sack franchise that had continually sold off their good players over the years, the fact that they battled back in the finals to get a game 7 was massive. I didn’t expect them to beat Detroit, after San Jose and Anaheim I was willing to believe in the team. The worst part was that it wasn’t even two minutes into the seventh game before I realized which Oiler team showed up to play that night. Every failure that the team had endured since I really started following them came out that night and at no point did I think the Oilers had a shot at winning the game.

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