There are moments in life that are completely heartbreaking. Like that scene in Toy Story 3 where Andy is introducing Bonnie to his old toys, and sees Woody at the bottom of the toy box (he wasn’t supposed to be there). Andy hesitates, and then proceeds to tell Bonnie about his special friend. I watched that movie in Seattle with my son (on holidays), cried like a baby. We went to Johnny Rockets afterward so Dad could settle down (and I’m not even kidding).
It sounds like today’s PC is a “we’re fine, it’s all good” moment and that’s a great outcome. It seems unfair for 83 to leave now, when the good times are just around the corner. Ales Hemksy has been a member of the Oilers since 2002 fall, I can’t imagine him leaving this way.
Plus, Hemsky can help! Dellow and I were talking about this yesterday, 83 is a solid option when you need to get the puck out of the zone. We talk at length about him as an offensive player, but his skills with the puck are extremely useful everywhere. MacT and Hemsky’s PC might be for a trade, or an injury, or (I don’t think so) a rettirement.
But maybe it’s for something good. I think we should proceed as if that’s a possibility.
And if Hemsky is staying, I’ll be thrilled. This guy is one of us, he’s been here for all of the bad times and come out the other side. The point of view is different–Hemsky’s got the coins, we pay admission–but he’s a guy who spent more than a decade getting pulverized by the caveman Regehr (with no penalties I can recall).
This could be a good or bad day, based on 9am.
Scott Cullen has his top 300 scorers projection up at tsn and a few Oilers make the list. Here’s the Cullen projection with my RE in brackets:
- Taylor Hall 71, 31-41-72 (70, 37-45-82)
- Jordan Eberle 80, 28-40-68 (78, 28-37-65)
- Sam Gagner 77, 20-34-54 (82, 15-37-52)
- Nail Yakupov 80, 25-27-52 (82, 29-23-52)
- David Perron 75, 20-27-47 (69, 20-24-44)
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 63, 13-32-45 (62, 21-42-63)
- Ales Hemsky 67, 15-28-43 (66, 11-25-36)
- Justin Schultz 80, 12-30-42 (80, 13-28-41)
Most of the projections match up, I’m stronger on Hall and Nuge (and I’m fine with those bets). Cullen’s projections for this group (166GF) trails my estimate for the top 8 scorers (174GF) but it isn’t a massive gap between the two estimates. The real story is secondary scoring–beyond these 7 forwards and 1D the Oilers don’t appear to have enough offense. That’s what MacT’s moves were all about this summer, but if we’re going to see someone else top 40 points my guess is it’ll come from a new arrival (Joensuu, Belov) and my guess is that it’s an extreme longshot.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
We’re live on location at the Tour of Alberta this morning, with a wide range of guests (and some additions likely). Scheduled to appear:
- Spencer Smitheman will help guide us through the Tour of Alberta and we’ll give you a pre-race feel for this brand new event. I was downtown last night, lots of excitement and a nice crowd for the first day of the event. Slavak Peter Sagan crushed the competition in the prologue last night.
- Ryan Marsh, Assistant coach of the U of A Golden Bears and Campus Director of the Vimy Campus. We’ll talk about Donnan and Vimy Hockey, about their focus for young athletes, the success they’re seeing (NHL draft, WHL drafts) and we’ll talk about the Oilers rookies/Golden Bears game and the start up of hockey season.
- Bruce McCurdy from the Cult of Hockey. Bruce has a great article up this morning on MacT’s summer of change and we’ll talk about that and some roster battles.
- Brian King (PDO) on the Eskimos. A season that had some promise is off the rails, with Ed Hervey calling out players and Kavis Reed hanging on for dear life. We’ll break things down with Brian.
Tweets are best today @Lowetide_ but Connor will be checking the texts too at 10-1260. Hope you can tune in!