A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT

Today’s the day the NHL finally decided to smarten the hell up and change the icing rule. You’re going to hear all kinds of bitching about it now, but this is a rule that should have been instituted decades ago. Thanks, Don Cherry. I truly believe your ongoing campaign made a difference. It’s too late for Taylor Fedun–whose career was impacted by the rule (or non-rule)–but there will be another defender along shortly who will benefit.

Fedun’s looking up at the NHL roster now, there’s so damn much depth in Oklahoma City someone qualified is going to be in the pressbox every night. I’m not expert on the Oilers depth chart, but here’s a lash about what the pro blue might look like on MacT’s wall:

  1. Justin Schultz
  2. Jeff Petry
  3. Ladislav Smid
  4. Andrew Ference
  5. Nick Schultz
  6. Anton Belov
  7. Denis Grebeshkov
  8. Corey Potter
  9. Phil Larsen
  10. Oscar Klefbom (hurt today, blocking a shot)
  11. Taylor Fedun
  12. Martin Marincin
  13. Brandon Davidson
  14. Brad Hunt
  15. Martin Gernat
  16. David Musil
  17. Joey Leach

Barons will no doubt have a couple of AHL veterans in there, but that’s basically the group Edmonton fans should be interested in following this season. The funny thing about this list is the sheer number of actual prospects who are now (finally) turning pro. Using my summer top 30 prospects list, the #2 (Klefbom) #3 (Marincin) #5 (Gernat) #11 (Belov) #12 (Fedun) #15 (Musil) and #16 (Davidson) prospects are all here.

And Dillon Simpson turns pro in the spring, Darnell Nurse possibly in the fall. Ideally, you’d like these blue developed in front of the gifted forwards, but at least they’re on the way. I suspect some of them will be dealt in the next 12 months to address immediate need and to add draft picks.

 

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41 Responses to "A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT"

  1. RexLibris says:

    Interesting that you have Larsen just ahead of Sami Salo there. At this stage I’d have probably put Marincin right behind Larsen based on number of games played over the last season or two.

    *Fingers stilled crossed that Klefbom does not become our Sami Salo but this is getting absurd.

  2. Racki says:

    The only argument I’ve heard against hybrid icing, to me, is a silly one. Some like John Shannon say “either do it right or don’t do it at all”. “Right” meant having no-touch icing. I’m OK with that, but I don’t get the thought that you can’t eventually move to that. Shannon even went so far as to say something like “just take the one injury every now and then” (and keep touch icing in its current form). The concern is it does nothing to save forwards from being hurt. This is definitely true, but for sure the defense are at the biggest risk. It’s a lot less common that a forward gets to the puck first, and a little more uncommon that it’s with a defenseman hot on his heels.

    If I had my way, the NHL would go to full no-touch icing (being a guy who played defense in contact hockey and got hit from behind more than once). But hybrid icing is a huge step forward. Baby steps. Do the hybrid for now, and if all goes well, move to no-touch.

    It seemed like a really idiotic comment to me to hear Shannon say something like “just take the 1 or two bad injuries”.

    They need to make it safe for forwards too, but it won’t happen right away away because no-touch icing isn’t on the table right now. They shouldn’t go another year with touch icing, or whatever length it takes before addressing this again. No need to risk any more bad injuries.

  3. geowal says:

    Klefbom needs to be covered in bubble wrap before he puts his equipment on

  4. Lowetide says:

    I can almost guarantee it’s old bulls like Sather who won’t let it go.

  5. VanOil says:

    Well done by Mr Cherry on this file.

    I cheer like hell for Mr Fedun.

    Mrs Raitt is just fantastic.

  6. Racki says:

    Lowetide:

    More than likely right, and I wonder if he’d be on that side of the argument if he’d played D instead. Anyways, great step forward. And yah, Cherry can be a blowhard sometimes (I love him though), but I’m sure he had a huge part in this rule change too.

  7. theres oil in virginia says:

    Is Klefbom a lemon? You fix one thing and something else breaks. Just a bad luck run?

  8. B S says:

    Racki,

    Now, here’s hoping they get rid of that stupid over-the-glass penalty and make it equivalent to icing. It’s one of only two things Cherry has probably ever uttered that I whole-heartedly agree with (the other being softer equipment).

  9. Lowetide says:

    theres oil in virginia:
    Is Klefbom a lemon?You fix one thing and something else breaks.Just a bad luck run?

    It’s too bad because he does appear to be something else based on reports. However, if you can’t play you can’t play. Here’s hoping he’s back soon.

  10. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    NHL Power Rankings.

    Oilers 24th.

    http://www.tsn.ca/fantasy_news/rankings/nhl/

  11. Lowetide says:

    going to be a lot of surprised people this season.

  12. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Lowetide:
    going to be a lot of surprised people this season.

    I know you’ve picked the Oilers to make the playoffs.

    Do you see them grabbing one of the top 3 spots in the Pacific or do you think they will take one of the two wild card spots?

  13. Lowetide says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: I know you’ve picked the Oilers to make the playoffs.

    Do you see them grabbing one of the top 3 spots in the Pacific or do you think they will take one of the two wild card spots?

    Wild card.

  14. geowal says:

    Those power rankings are the snapshot in time, not a season prediction. Hardly unreasonable for the next couple weeks, without the 2Cs

  15. B S says:

    I think that If Chicago runs roughshod over the west again the Oilers could definitely be in the running for a wild card.

    Krueger detractors loved to point out that the Oilers’ record prorated last season wasn’t any better than the year before, but they forget that the reason the Oilers finished seventh last instead of second last is that everyone else’s record was worse than the previous season unless they were Chicago and Anaheim.

  16. geowal says:

    I think for the Oilers getting in the playoffs depends on the Pacific grabbing both wild cards. Need to beat Nashville, Colorado, Winnipeg, and either Minnesota or Dallas. Then “just” need to top Calgary and, let’s say, Phoenix to make it.

    With the reduced divisional play that may be doable.

  17. russ99 says:

    I think for Klefbom, he just needs to toughen up.

    It’s a far cry from playing sheltered minutes in Sweden to playing 15+ minutes a night in the tough, chippy small rink AHL.

    But if we’re patient with him, he could turn into something special. I’m glad the Oilers are thinking long term with him.

  18. Jamie says:

    I still don’t get how this is going to eliminate those falling into the boards incidents. Aren’t those more likely when both players are close to the puck and it is in question who is going to get it? Hybrid icing doesn’t do anything to prevent those, only those times when it is obvious the dman is going to be there first. Just switch to touch icing already.

  19. Genjutsu says:

    Lowetide: Wild card.

    I have them in 7-8th seed in a fight with the ducks.

    We’ll see.

  20. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Lowetide: Wild card.

    If we cede the top 3 spots in the Central to CHI, STL and MIN, which I think is a reasonable expectation, we’re looking at this wild card race. (based on last season’s standings.)

    ANA

    PHX

    DAL

    EDM

    CAL

    COL

    The Oilers would have to surpass 2 of ANA, DAL and PHX to make it.

    Which 2 of those teams do you think the Oilers will pass?

  21. wheatnoil says:

    (Sorry for the long post! I won’t be hurt if any of you skip it. Honestly, this post was three times as long and I cut it down!)

    I had written in the comments the other day about performance bonuses and how much of them count towards the cap. Since I was curious, I looked into it a little more to try to figure out if there is a significant risk that the Oilers could end up with a bonus overage and be penalized into next year’s cap. I thought it was interesting so I thought I’d share.

    My original comment was here: http://lowetide.ca/blog/2013/09/we-are-here.html/comment-page-1#comment-253881

    Short Answer: If the Oilers end up paying a bonus overage, it will be WELL worth it!

    I did a lot of searching, but really most of the information is better explained in this amazing article by Danny Tolensky from 5 years ago with a copy of Evgeni Malkin’s Entry-Level Contract (!) (http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog.php?post_id=16855#.UkoexoY2bme). More info is also here (http://www.capgeek.com/faq/how-do-entry-level-contracts-work).

    As I said in my linked comment, the Oilers already have $9.15Million in bonuses going to RNH, Yakupov, J. Schultz, and Belov. Of that, $4,822,500 is a performance bonus cushion that does not count against the cap unless the players earn it. The other $4,327,500 count against the cap regardless. If those four Oilers earn $4,327,500 or less in bonuses, there’s no change to the Oiler cap hit. If they earn more, the Oilers need to have the cap room to pay them or they will be charged for it next year.

    If all four max out with their ‘Category A’ bonuses (see the above link to see what that means), then that accounts for $3.15 million, so the Oilers will not get any extra cap hit from that. It’s possible for all 4 to max out on Category A bonuses, but it’s unlikely, especially for both Belov AND J. Schultz.

    Assuming RNH, Yakupov, and J. Schultz’s contracts are similar to Evgeni Malkin’s (and since they all got the rookie max, it’s entirely possible), the Oilers would start cutting into their performance bonus cushion if any of those three hit their Category B bonuses, which are: finish in the top 5 for the Hart, Richard, Selke, or Norris voting; finish in top 10 for goals, assists, points, or points/game in the NHL (or among defensemen for J. Schultz); make the 1st or 2nd year end all-star team; or win the Conn Smythe Trophy. If they hit any of those, they get a $2 million dollar bonus (the max in Category B) if their contract is like Malkin’s.

    If they hit any of those Category B bonuses, it would push the Oilers into their performance cushion. First of all, that would be an absolutely amazing year for any of them! However, I’ll go ahead and say it would be pretty unlikely for RNH or Yakupov hit those performance bonuses. They would have to have a Hall-like year… and Hall is still on the team soaking up those points and trophy votes! Not to mention RNH being injured to start the year and Eakins seeming to want to spread them around on 2 to 3 lines.

    The most likely candidate is J. Schultz hitting the top 10 for defensemen. Last year, in the lockout shortened season, he was 7th in goals (with 8), tied for 16th in assists (19), and tied for 12th in points (27). If he can sustain that through a full year, he may hit his performance bonus and if his contract is like Malkin’s, he may get a full $2 million (which, interestingly, he would have gotten last year!).

    If J. Schultz maxes out his Category B bonus, the Oilers will cut into their performance bonus cushion by $822,500. So they would need to have at least that much cap room at the end of the year or be penalized by that much into the next year.

    This shouldn’t be a problem, as right now the Oilers have $633K in cap space and will have more as players return from the IR and others are sent down. Also, as I said, not all four Oilers are likely to max out their category A bonuses (see the link, the targets are not easy). However, if TWO Oilers hit their category B bonuses, then the Oilers may be carrying a cap hit into next season.

    If that happens… well, in my opinion it will be well worth it because that would be an absolutely amazing year!! As it stands it would take an amazing performance by TWO of Schultz, Yakupov, and RNH to cause a significant cap overage for the Oilers next year.

  22. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    geowal:
    Those power rankings are the snapshot in time, not a season prediction.Hardly unreasonable for the next couple weeks, without the 2Cs

    Yes they are but starting the season without those C’s doesn’t bode well.

    With loser points in play it is very difficult to make up an early season deficit.

  23. Lowetide says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: If we cede the top 3 spots in the Central to CHI, STL and MIN, which I think is a reasonable expectation, we’re looking at this wild card race. (based on last season’s standings.)

    ANA

    PHX

    DAL

    EDM

    CAL

    COL

    The Oilers would have to surpass 2 of ANA, DAL and PHX to make it.

    Which 2 of those teams do you think the Oilers will pass?

    http://lowetide.ca/blog/2013/08/pacific-heights-2013-14.html

  24. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Lowetide,

    Looks like a battle between ANA, PHX, DAL, EDM and NSH for 2 spots.

    Goaltending might make the difference.

  25. geowal says:

    Lowetide,

    Followed that link, love this line:

    We’ll know they’re crazy when Sean Monahan breaks camp with the big team–he’ll be their Sam Gagner by the New Year.

    Seems like that’s how it is, at least for 9 games.

  26. Ice Sage says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Lowetide,

    Looks like a battle between ANA, PHX, DAL, EDM and NSH for 2 spots.

    Goaltending might make the difference.

    Hmm goaltending… who knew? I like EDM chances, esp with the much better D, if it comes to that.
    Oilers will also pass VCR so there’s room for a few of those other guys.

  27. Ice Sage says:

    Oilers 18th in ESPN rankings which seem to have some analysis applied to them, not just a ‘pick up where we left off last year’.
    http://espn.go.com/nhl/powerrankings/_/season/2014/week/0

  28. OilFire says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:
    Lowetide,

    Looks like a battle between ANA, PHX, DAL, EDM and NSH for 2 spots.

    Goaltending might make the difference.

    Well, if it comes down to goaltending, what do you think is going to happen to Van’s position in the standings after Roberto “Meltdown” Luongo tells John “Boiling Rage” Tortorella “don’t you dare pull me.” Might be an extra playoff spot after all…

  29. wheatnoil says:

    McKenzie reporting that a Phil Kessel extension may signed as early as tomorrow. He’s expecting around $8 million for 7-8 years, taking Kessel to age 33-34. This is after Kessel’s 5 year second contract.

    Those 6th and 7th years in Hall and Nuge’s (and Yakupov’s?) contract look like they’re going to be prime value! I only wish they could’ve squeezed an 8th year out of Nuge!

  30. Numenius says:

    Interesting that a lot of people say “why not just go all the way to no touch icing?”

    Here’s a reason why not to. With no touch icing it’s easier to play an effective trap because the D can cheat up since they don’t have to worry about the possibility that a forward will slip by and steal an icing.

    In other words, we’d get more boring Phoenix Coyotes hockey, which would suck.

  31. LostBoy says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: If we cede the top 3 spots in the Central to CHI, STL and MIN, which I think is a reasonable expectation, we’re looking at this wild card race. (based on last season’s standings.)

    ANA

    PHX

    DAL

    EDM

    CAL

    COL

    The Oilers would have to surpass 2 of ANA, DAL and PHX to make it.

    Which 2 of those teams do you think the Oilers will pass?

    The answer is:

    VAN

    I’m not even making a joke – if you had to pick one non-sad-sack team (Hi Calgary!) for the best candidate in the West for the wheels about to fall off…time’s pretty much up in Vancouver. They’ll likely still compete and could well get in, but they’re going to be down in the scrum. The Sedins’ stats have eroded across the board three years running. They’re eroding from a mighty impressive place, so there’s plenty of gas left in the tank. But the show’s winding down. Sucks to be you, but since you asked for two, the second answer is still:

    VAN

  32. Hammers says:

    When you see all the “D” minus Simpson & Nurse it tells me in 2015-16 at least 5 of those “D” would have been traded for something maybe part of LT’s 3 for 1 type of deal . Guessing games are fun so my 8 defencemen for 15-16 no order, are J.Schultz , Petry , Nurse , Marinchin, Belov, Klefbom , Simpson & Gernat . Lets hope we make the playoffs before then or we will be saying goodbye to some forwards. Do we get draft picks or players for the others . Smid gets us a 3rd or 4th line player . N.Schultz a draft pick and by then Ference as well . Lets start with a win 4-2 vs Winterpeg.

  33. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    LostBoy: The answer is:

    VAN

    I’m not even making a joke – if you had to pick one non-sad-sack team (Hi Calgary!) for the best candidate in the Westfor the wheels about to fall off…time’s pretty much up in Vancouver.They’ll likely still compete and could well get in, but they’re going to be down in the scrum.The Sedins’ stats have eroded across the board three years running.They’re eroding from a mighty impressive place, so there’s plenty of gas left in the tank.But the show’s winding down.Sucks to be you, but since you asked for two, the second answer is still:

    VAN

    The reason the Sedins have “declined” is the absence of Kesler and, to a lesser extent, Booth.

    Both are possession monsters who, when in the lineup, provide the Sedins with much easier matchups.

    If both remain healthy, the Canucks will easily coast into the playoffs.

    P.S.

    3 years running?

    4 years ago, Henrik Sedin won the NHL scoring race with 112 points.

    Daniel, despite missing 19 games due to injury, scored 29 gaols and 85 points.

    P.P.S.

    3 years ago, Daniel Sedin led the NHL in scoring with 41 goals and 104 points while Henrik recorded 94 points/

    2 years ago, in Kesler and Booth’s absence, Henrik Sedin scored 81 points in 82 games and Daniel managed 30 goals.

    I wouldn’t count on their wheels falling off anytime soon.

  34. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Ice Sage:
    Oilers 18th in ESPN rankings which seem to have some analysis applied to them, not just a ‘pick up where we left off last year’.
    http://espn.go.com/nhl/powerrankings/_/season/2014/week/0

    If you look at the ESPN ratings more closely, they have it this way:

    Pacific:

    LAK

    SJS

    ANA

    VCR

    PHX

    EDM

    CAL

    Central:

    CHI

    STL

    NSH

    MIN

    DAL

    COL

    So that would yield a wild card ranking of:

    VCR

    PHX

    EDM

    MIN

    DAL

    COL

    CGY

  35. LostBoy says:

    Dead Cat Bounce,

    Aw, you dance real purty, DSF!

    The reason the Sedins have declined (just to pick the unreversed topline: Henrik, ppg: 1.37-1.15-.98-.94; Daniel: 1.34-1.27-.93-.85) is that they are men now entering their mid-30s. They’re still fine players. But the party balloons are running out of helium. Nothing in your reply is in conflict with what I wrote. The fun ride is ending. I mean, if you can call that fun. Well, okay, if you’ve never won anything ever I’m sure it was fun. Sort of.

    But the answer is still:

    VAN

  36. 719 says:

    wheatnoil,

    Right now the Oilers have a max potential bonus payout of 9.15 million, if all of RNH, J. Schultz, Yakz and Belov hit all their bonuses. As you put it, it is unlikely they hit their group B bonuses, at least all of them.

    The max the Oilers could be over the cap based on today’s numbers would be $3,627,298.

    In order to be very safe there would be no cap overage, if I was the Oilers I would want another 1.8 million in cap space. That will come when Gagner, RNH, Grebeshkov, Steve Mac and Potter come back. Three players will have to go down when those 4 players return. Most likely Arcobello, Potter and Ben Eager. This will represent between 1.7 to 2.0 million in cap savings dependent upon when the roster is healthy.

    This will also give the Oilers cap flexibility as other injuries hit the team. My guess is that a one way contract will be traded out sometime during the year, further alleviating the cap crunch and lessening the chance of a bonus overage.

  37. jp says:

    Dead Cat Bounce:

    I wouldn’t count on their wheels falling off anytime soon.

    Well they are 33. It ain’t going to last forever.

    That’s two seasons now where neither twin has scored a PPG. It sure would be nice to have a 21 year old who just scored a PPG coming along…

  38. GordM says:

    You know who isn’t a dollar short?

    Phil Kessel

  39. Zipdot says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: The reason the Sedins have “declined” is the absence of Kesler and, to a lesser extent, Booth.

    Both are possession monsters who, when in the lineup, provide the Sedins with much easier matchups.

    If both remain healthy, the Canucks will easily coast into the playoffs.

    P.S.

    3 years running?

    4 years ago, Henrik Sedin won the NHL scoring race with 112 points.

    Daniel, despite missing 19 games due to injury, scored 29 gaols and 85 points.

    P.P.S.

    3 years ago, Daniel Sedin led the NHL in scoring with 41 goals and 104 points while Henrik recorded 94 points/

    2 years ago, in Kesler and Booth’s absence, Henrik Sedin scored 81 points in 82 games and Daniel managed 30 goals.

    I wouldn’t count on their wheels falling off anytime soon.

    D S F and the Sedin twins, sitting in a tree!

    Bro, you complain about Oilers homers, but you come all the way over to an Oilers blog to homer on the Sedins! Can you spell hypocrite? (I can’t)

  40. Diesel says:

    Nice post, Wheatnoil.

    I’ll take a cap penalty if it means playoffs – a juice vs squeeze scenario.

  41. Spydyr says:

    russ99,

    Tough

    russ99:
    I think for Klefbom, he just needs to toughen up.

    It’s a far cry from playing sheltered minutes in Sweden to playing 15+ minutes a night in the tough, chippy small rink AHL.

    But if we’re patient with him, he could turn into something special. I’m glad the Oilers are thinking long term with him.

    russ99:
    I think for Klefbom, he just needs to toughen up.

    It’s a far cry from playing sheltered minutes in Sweden to playing 15+ minutes a night in the tough, chippy small rink AHL.

    But if we’re patient with him, he could turn into something special. I’m glad the Oilers are thinking long term with him.

    Toughen up.He got hurt blocking a shot is he supposed to get tougher then a puck?Players get hurt.

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