OILERS AT CAPITALS G6, 13-14

It appears the Edmonton Oilers will go with Jason LaBarbera in net tonight, and I believe it is the right call. LaBarbera has rarely been an NHL starting goaltender but does have some nice numbers and could certainly be counted on in the short term. We hope Devan Dubnyk can regain his form and return to the #1 job. I’ll update the lineup later, and of course Dubnyk could end up playing (I can’t find absolute confirmation on LaBarbera). Azorcan3

As big as the goaltending problem may appear to be, Craig MacTavish and Dallas Eakins may have a bigger problem on the horizon. One never knows if this sort of thing comes from a frustrated Dad or is real, but this won’t look good and may not end well:

yak controversy1yak controversy2

Eronko works for sports.ru and is certainly a credible source. Previous to this item, Yakupov has been a model citizen and I would suggest that there’s every chance that this will be blown wildly out of proportion. Still, it’s out there and it is absolutely a concern. Joanne Ireland wrote this piece about it from Yakupov’s pov. Shortly after publishing this post, I found this from Ian McLaren at the Score.

Update 8:52. About 2 hours after posting this, a Craig Custance tweet quoting agent Igor Larionov:

custance

So, that has to be viewed in a very positive way. The story out of Russia came from the Dad (based on earlier tweet), we heard yesterday from the frustrated player and now today the agent chimes in.

MORE UPDATES

  • “My goal is to play in the NHL. I have not had any conversations (with Neftekhimik). I love it here” – Nail Yakupov
  • “I was shocked to hear (the KHL rumors). First thought was, “Is dad trying to do something?”. But no, he’d never go behind my back”- Yakupov
  • Yakupov’s dad Rail (yes, Rail) Yakupov to Sport-Express: “We never thought about Nail’s coming back. Don’t believe internet rumors”

So, that’s an important side of the story told (this is all from Slava Malamud (also from Sport Express Russia). We’ve heard from player, agent and parent. We now await the Neftekhimik head coach.

jolyThe Washington Capitals had their own problems with #1 overal picks, with Greg Joly (1974, in photo, 365 NHL games) and Rick Green (1976, 845 games) preceeding Alexander Ovechkin (2004) who has certainly covered the bet. Washington is a funny team at the draft, they make enormous errors but have done some nice things too. They are certainly risk takers.

DallasEakinsWhiteboardSpedUpThis is clearly sped up (and funny) but it appears to me that the Oiler players are still having trouble with the “swarm” as designed by Dallas Eakins. The play he’s designing here appears to be the Hemsky play where he was behind the net and attempted to get the puck out at the end of regulation against Toronto (didn’t work). I remember seeing Ryan Getzlaf do that years and years ago, wish it had worked Saturday.

nuge gets knocked downWell this pissed me off even more than watching it live! How in hell was this missed? Holy hell, zebra’s, there’s a goalie at the other end with his career in jeopardy and one of the reasons is this non-call? Brutal. BRUTAL!

BOXCARS

  1. Taylor Hall 5, 1-4-5
  2. Mark Arcobello 5, 0-5-5 (rookie)
  3. Ryan Smyth 4, 3-1-4
  4. Boyd Gordon 5, 3-1-4
  5. David Perron 5, 1-3-4
  6. Jordan Eberle 5, 1-3-4
  7. Ales Hemsky 5, 1-3-4
  8. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 3, 2-1-3
  9. Justin Schultz 5, 0-3-3
  10. Jesse Joensuu 3, 1-0-1

Don’t look now, there’s a lot of guys enjoying very fast starts offensively. If the goaltending gets straightened out, this team is going to soar. More to come, I’ll have lineups when they are published.

PROJECTED LINEUPS

This is from Jon at ON, but seems right. With the knowledge that Yakupov is sitting, we’ll go with:

  • Nuge-Hall-Hemsky
  • Arcobello-Smyth-Eberle
  • Gordon-Perron-Joensuu
  • Acton-Gazdic-Brown
  • Smid-Petry
  • Ference-N Schultz
  • Belov-J Schultz
  • LaBarbera

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523 Responses to "OILERS AT CAPITALS G6, 13-14"

« Older Comments
  1. VanOil says:

    12 and 20 on the ice late. Who is the message being sent to? Yakupov maybe

  2. LostBoy says:

    Just in case I’m being misunderstood, I’m not advocating that the coach be fired and unless the wheels fall totally off it’s ridiculous to consider the new GM’s hand-picked coach, installed in bloody fashion, and with all the turnover, is currently in danger.

    But the abyss is, like, just over there. We’re now going to be 1-4-1 and 6 of the next 7 and 10 of the next 13 are on the road.

    And right now, I guess the goalie who spent half an hour after the game in his stall with his equipment on and his head in his hands on Saturday night is starting tomorrow.

    I’m just saying that we’re, oh, four or five more games of this fun away from…places we don’t want to go and bold moves we don’t want to contemplate.

    It’s ridiculous to imagine that this kind of early season disaster is right now more than possible and obviously l hope something happens in goal to settle things down and the many good things that are going on have time to gain traction instead of getting drowned in disaster. But it’s just totally amazing that disaster is quite possibly in the cards.

  3. Gerta Rauss says:

    Hanna Barberra has earned another start tomorrow.

  4. BlacqueJacque says:

    LostBoy,

    I think LaBarbera has earned another start. Only one questionable goal. The rest he didn’t have much of a chance on, and he’s made some quality stops.

    Will Acton makes it 4-2 from Perron and a pinching Petry.

  5. DeadmanWaking says:

    Final version: Do not attempt in-flight delivery. Do not laminate ski boots. Trained eagles are standing by.

  6. spoiler says:

    Congrats to Acton. Might have to embellish that one to the grandkids though.

  7. russ99 says:

    striatic

    I’ve seen one good scoring chance this period, where they held the puck on the entry and Eberle got into some space.

    The rest of the shots are throwing the puck to the net in traffic during the endless cycle.

    They say if you keep shooting, it will eventually go in. I guess that goal is proof. :)

  8. Lucinius says:

    A goal! Score is less ugly, but ugly it yet remains.

  9. OilBuzz says:

    If they came back from this…

  10. OilBuzz says:

    Gordon HAD that…

  11. Gerta Rauss says:

    Some nice things again tonight but we’re now into “if ifs and buts were candy and nuts” territory.

  12. RMGS says:

    Yak is back!

  13. Gret99zky says:

    arrows are pointing in the right direction…..

  14. BlacqueJacque says:

    Gerta Rauss:
    “if ifs and buts were candy and nuts” territory.

    Oooh, can I play?

    If its and buts were candy and nuts, tonight would be an open pinata!

  15. flyfish1168 says:

    Small sample with 6 games but under Eakins our Special teams look bad. Last years speciality teams was better with less face off wins. Interesting

  16. spoiler says:

    Nuge’s ice time was cut way back, and the 4th line had a few shifts in the third. Big D conscious of the back-to-back? That’s my guess.

    http://www.nhl.com/scores/htmlreports/20132014/ES020080.HTM

    CF-CA=55-48

  17. Soup Fascist says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Really? What gets you excited about starting LaBarbara tomorrow against the Pens? The .800 sv%? The whiffs he let in to Laich and Brouwer? The 7 for 11 stretch of saves that for all intents and purposes ended the game.

    An NHL goalie has to stop the ones that should be stopped and a few that don’t. If your argument is that he is no worse than Dubnyk – fine. But please don’t say LaBarbara earned anything tonight – except his name on a list of goaltenders worse that Martin Biron. God help us.

  18. iHockeyWpg says:

    If Yakupov is back in tomorrow, who’s coming out? Could only listen to game, no access to TV tonight.

  19. OilClog says:

    Let’s make Brown the goalie, he’ll make as many saves, and punch more faces then current records show.

    How much to get Ranford out of LA?

  20. Soup Fascist says:

    iHockeyWpg,

    iHockeyWpg:
    If Yakupov is back in tomorrow, who’s coming out?Could only listen to game, no access to TV tonight.

    Early speculation on Twitter is Larsen, Yak and a German Shepard with good frisbee retrieval skills named “Chopper” are in – Brown, Dubnyk and LaBabs in the pressbox.

  21. jake70 says:

    6 games, and a 0.250 points percentage so far.

  22. RMGS says:

    Nothing new here, but the Oilers have the worst save % in the league. If they keep winning the shot battle and their shootingt % stays the same, all they need is average goaltending (and less bad luck) to generate some wins.

    Sadly, tomorrow’s likely a lost cause.

  23. flyfish1168 says:

    Interesting read at Hockybuzz by Ryan Garner

    http://www.hockeybuzz.com/blog/Ryan-Garner/An-Open-Letter-to-Dallas-Eakins/185/54815#.UlydwXT4DL8

    I agree with him. Eakins has to man up and take some blame even with it being early in the season. Poor speciality teams play and wrong players on the ice in certain situations.

  24. bookje says:

    One last time (hopefully)

    We hoped for the best but it turned out like always.

    LT – I fear this is going to b the title of one of your blogs this season now – and that worries me.

    However, I take solace in the fact that the team is way better, minus the save %.

  25. Lowetide says:

    Bookje: We’ll it’s a great title for a blog post. :-)

    I’ll have to look at the totals, but if felt like Eakins pulled the chute in the third period. Lots of TOI for the 4line, as a for instance. That’s a weapon for sure (rest your best players for tomorrow night) but it does seem to be a case of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    Anyway, he’s an NHL coach and I’m not, sure he knows what he’s doing.

  26. G Money says:

    I am very interested to know what the league record is for worst save percentage to start the season.

    We *have* to be contending at least.

    I get the feeling we have to hold the other guys to less than 10 shots in a game in order to win.

    I can handle the pain of a good team with bad goaltending. Once again – I do not believe that Dubnky and Labarbera suddenly became crap overnight. They *will* get back on their game. The only question is how many points it will cost us until that happens…

    What I am finding is that these games are getting tiring. Not from the losing but because every time the other team gets a shot *or* every time one of our defenders has the puck behind our net, my sphincter (you know which one) tightens, ’cause I just know something bad is extremely likely to happen.

    The Edmonton Oilers – exhausting sphincters since 2007.

  27. Pajamah says:

    Do you think Neuvirth was mouthing “call me?” to the Oiler management form his seat at the end of the bench?

    Let’s set the bar low, just not mid .800 low

  28. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide: Anyway, he’s an NHL coach and I’m not, sure he knows what he’s doing.

    Is that a freudian slip?:

    Anyway, he’s an NHL coach and I’m not sure he knows what he’s doing.

    Hehe.

  29. flyfish1168 says:

    Lowetide,

    I like your confidence in our new coach. But to me he hasn’t really proven anything yet himself. He wants his players to prove to him they can play his system. So far his system may winning on the corsi. But lets remember from the Kill zone tonight we didn’t fair really any better then the Caps.

  30. RMGS says:

    Lowetide: I’ll have to look at the totals, but if felt like Eakins pulled the chute in the third period. Lots of TOI for the 4line, as a for instance. That’s a weapon for sure (rest your best players for tomorrow night) but it does seem to be a case of cutting off your nose to spite your face.

    Anyway, he’s an NHL coach and I’m not, sure he knows what he’s doing.

    It has to be to rest the top-nine. Of course, that’s only necessary because of the type of fourth line available. #viciouscircle

  31. russ99 says:

    This image was posted over on that other board. If a picture speaks a thousand words, then this one speaks volumes:

    http://i.imgur.com/8Pk3qLx.png

    Lundqist, Bobrovsky or Quick couldn’t shut out an opponent with that fundamental of a defensive breakdown.

  32. Lowetide says:

    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 22m

    “Everything was going fine until we brought a puck back into our zone and let a few dominos fall.” – Coach Eakins on Caps flurry in 2nd

    I don’t recall the play. Hall?

  33. steveb12344 says:

    Lowetide,

    Smid

  34. steveb12344 says:

    steveb12344,

    It started the whole sequence that led to Hall’s giveaway and eventually Smid’s penelty

  35. Woodguy says:

    steveb12344:
    Lowetide,

    Smid

    Why does Eakins hate Smid?

  36. jake70 says:

    Lowetide:
    Edmonton Oilers ‏@EdmontonOilers 22m

    “Everything was going fine until we brought a puck back into our zone and let a few dominos fall.” – Coach Eakins on Caps flurry in 2nd

    I don’t recall the play. Hall?

    I remember the play, I recall saying “D fumbling” and you LT commented on Hall having a tough night and you had mentioned Smid gave Hemsky the suicide pass…that sequence. They backed the 2 Oilers back and back right down to to behind the net…goal happened little later.

  37. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    steveb12344:
    steveb12344,

    It started the whole sequence that led to Hall’s giveaway and eventually Smid’s penelty

    Yep. That’s what I saw too. Smid… lordy.

    IIRC he had the puck in his own zone, with years of time and space but hesitated to move the puck… because Smid… The caps applied minimal pressure on him and started backing up into a corner only to lose the puck then chase it around and take a penalty.

    brutal.

    Of course, it would help if the other players wouldn’t jump the zone so early, esp. with a guy like Smid handling the puck. Would it hurt to give him some puck support?

  38. jake70 says:

    Sorry, the penalty to Smid happened as result of the pressure….right…..not the goal, that came on the PP.

  39. Lowetide says:

    jake70: I remember the play, I recall saying “D fumbling” and you LT commented on Hall having a tough night and you had mentioned Smid gave Hemsky the suicide pass…that sequence. They backed the 2 Oilers back and back right down to to behind the net…goal happened little later.

    Ah yes, remember now.

  40. Lowetide says:

    jake70:
    Sorry, the penalty to Smid happened as result of the pressure….right…..not the goal, that came on the PP.

    Now I’m back to not knowing. Old age. Sad whatever that instrument is.

  41. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    http://www.extraskater.com/game/2013-10-14-oilers-capitals

    final numbers up. won everything but what matters. what I wouldn’t give for replacement level goaltending.

    looks like the 1 line had a tough night.

  42. Ribs says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Would it hurt to give him some puck support?

    Not part of the plan. AGGRESSIVE!

  43. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide: Now I’m back to not knowing. Old age. Sad whatever that instrument is.

    Smid was in the box on the PP goal by Ward (1st goal of the 2nd). he fumbled the puck and took a penalty.

    The PP goal itself was just some sick passing execution.

  44. rickithebear says:

    How do you defend a system that works in the slow skate speed AHL.
    it allows 4th line Forwrds to presure unskilled puck movement.
    hence even numbers in the Nhl for 4th’s.
    But exposes the top 3 lines to out of position structure .
    Cause the puck can move faster than the man.

    This does not work in , Basketball, Football (soccer), Rugby.
    Anyone who has played in the best leagues in the world in a sport knows this.

    I wondered about this in my head , but did not say anything.
    2 man pressure. sometimes. But never 3. to much ice available in an outmanned situation with pocession loss.

    Fuck Eakins.

  45. steveb12344 says:

    Lowetide,

    The Oil had possession around Centre ice, made a pass or two and it ended up with Smid just outside the left blueline. Instead of passing it up, he turned around went back over his blueline. The forechecker pressured him into making a bad pass to someone behind the Oilers net. From there a giveaway or two later Smid gets called for a penalty leading to the 2-1 goal.

  46. jake70 says:

    Lowetide: Now I’m back to not knowing. Old age. Sad whatever that instrument is.

    I am a little on your junior side, but not a whole lot, I may be off on this, combining 2 plays in my mind. Lol. Anyway it was the sequence that led to the Smid penalty. The team had full control at thier blueline and got indecisive, next thing you know Smid is shoving someone to the ice.

  47. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    The other thing on the goal was that Smid took the penalty during a 4×4, so the goal was 4×3:

    http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=2013020080-237-h

    near impossible to guard against it…. too much ice for those guys to play with.

    It is extra critical to back up the puck with support on a 4×4. Smid really fucked up… but man, recognize who has the puck and give him an outlet. fuck.

  48. jake70 says:

    steveb12344:
    Lowetide,

    The Oil had possession around Centre ice, made a pass or two and it ended up with Smid just outside the left blueline.Instead of passing it up, he turned around went back over his blueline.The forechecker pressured him into making a bad pass to someone behind the Oilers net. From there a giveaway or two later Smid gets called for a penalty leading to the 2-1 goal.

    Good stuff, thanks.

  49. Woodguy says:

    New coaches.

    They fall in love with Hemsky, but fail to look at his history.

    He produces best with a C and LW who go to the net and/or get into shooting positions, not guys who cycle.

    Hemsky’s production with Horcoff/Penner/Smyth dwarf his other playing partners over the years in terms of pts/gm.

    Hall, Eberle and RNH have their cycle game down to a science that they can do drunk in the dark and still score.

    Yet, as with Krueger, Eakins eshews the past for his own path forward.

    The over/under on him getting 4-93-14 back together and 6-27-83 together is 20 games.

    They will all click and look like world beaters and all it would take is for him to painstakingly watch every game with the ugly detail that many have us done over the years, and it would happen sooner.

    The optimal line up is:

    4-93-14
    57-89 (26 until healthy)-64
    6-27-83

    Its plain to everyone who has watched this team succeed and fail for the past number of years.

    I hate waiting for the coach to clue in.

    Takes too long.

    Also,

    Cap were averaging 37 shots a game and got 20.

    Oilers won the corsi and fenclose battle.

    They keep flipping the coin and it keeps coming up tails.

    It will even out if they can get .915 goaltending for a while.

  50. rich says:

    A couple of different people said it above, but I hope sooner – not later, the Oilers make an adjustment to the PK. Just like the disaster that was the diamond a few years ago, the swarm is not working against NHL calibre passing.

    We saw it in preseason, we’re seeing in the regular season and it’s not improving. Not sure if any of the MSM have the stones to ask this question, but I would like to hear what he has to say about why the PK has gone in the toilet this year to last.

  51. Woodguy says:

    Ribs: Not part of the plan. AGGRESSIVE!

    I’d bet my bankroll that play ends up on the video with Eakins’ eyes bulging and screaming “where is his support!!”

  52. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    If you hurry you can watch an amazing video glitch at the .20 mark of this post game vid:

    http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=459293&catid=4

    and, again at 1:20 and 1:34

  53. Gi JQE says:

    russ99:
    This image was posted over on that other board. If a picture speaks a thousand words, then this one speaks volumes:

    http://i.imgur.com/8Pk3qLx.png

    Lundqist, Bobrovsky or Quick couldn’t shut out an opponent with that fundamental of a defensive breakdown.

    There lies the problem. As bad as the goaltending has been. The zone coverage system doesnt work. Too easy to beat. Never seen an nhl club try such an extreme agressive style. It appears easy to defeat….

    If Eakins does not adjust it … Say hi to Sam rienheart…. So frustrating. I don’t buy that there are that many breakdowns in the system resulting in those range of shots.

    Something has to give.

    Signed one very frustrated oiler fan.

  54. gogliano says:

    50/50 model already has us down to a 1 in 3 shot:

    http://www.sportsclubstats.com/NHL/Western2.html

    Weighted? I don’t believe in it this early but it is telling us the situation is dire (15.6%):

    http://www.sportsclubstats.com/NHL/Western.html

  55. rickithebear says:

    Look at Taylor Halls WOWY.
    He and Yakupov were successful with only one Center.
    He plays in Dallas now.

  56. Ribs says:

    Woodguy: I’d bet my bankroll that play ends up on the video with Eakins’ eyes bulging and screaming “where is his support!!”

    I sure hope so! :)

  57. godot10 says:

    Woodguy:

    They keep flipping the coin and it keeps coming up tails.

    Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead.

  58. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=459286&catid=4

    Eakins post game… a lot of talk about that 3 minutes and what led to it. All under the guise of the pronoun “we”… but man… Smid is going to wear this one and might sit tomorrow.

    Eakins gave Labarbs a vote of some confidence “I thought he played well tonight” (or something like that)

  59. Ribs says:

    rickithebear: How do you defend a system that works in the slow skate speed AHL.
    it allows 4th line Forwrds to presure unskilled puck movement.
    hence even numbers in the Nhl for 4th’s.
    But exposes the top 3 lines to out of position structure .
    Cause the puck can move faster than the man.
    This does not work in , Basketball, Football (soccer), Rugby.
    Anyone who has played in the best leagues in the world in a sport knows this.
    I wondered about this in my head , but did not say anything.
    2 man pressure. sometimes. But never 3. to much ice available in an outmanned situation with pocession loss.

    This is what is has looked like to me so far…But I’m holding out a bit of hope. Eakins seems like a smart enough guy, maybe he can adapt. I just hope it’s soon.

  60. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Rosencrantz and Guildenstern are Dead.

    This is my pencil.

    My pencil is green.

  61. hags9k says:

    Give Olivier a start?

    I miss Khabi.

  62. Woodguy says:

    Corsi 5v5 total tonight:

    Player CF%
    Will Acton 75.00%
    Jesse Joensuu 69.20%
    Nick Schultz 68.40%
    Andrew Ference 60.00%
    Jordan Eberle 57.60%
    Luke Gazdic 57.10%
    Boyd Gordon 57.10%
    Jeff Petry 54.80%
    David Perron 54.50%
    Ryan Smyth 54.50%
    Mark Arcobello 51.70%
    Jason Labarbera 50.60%
    Ladislav Smid 47.10%
    Anton Belov 46.40%
    Mike Brown 42.90%
    Ales Hemsky 40.70%
    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 40.00%
    Taylor Hall 38.70%
    Justin Schultz 36.70%

    Corsi 5v5 close

    Player CF%
    Jordan Eberle 68.80%
    Mark Arcobello 68.80%
    Boyd Gordon 66.70%
    David Perron 66.70%
    Jesse Joensuu 63.60%
    Jeff Petry 62.50%
    Ryan Smyth 62.50%
    Nick Schultz 57.10%
    Ladislav Smid 52.60%
    Jason Labarbera 51.00%
    Andrew Ference 50.00%
    Anton Belov 50.00%
    Taylor Hall 38.90%
    Justin Schultz 36.80%
    Ales Hemsky 36.80%
    Will Acton 33.30%
    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 33.30%
    Luke Gazdic 25.00%
    Mike Brown 20.00%

  63. Lowetide says:

    As the impatient real estate in the group, I’m a little miffed that it’s 9pm and we still don’t have an Oiler trade. Tick tock Mac.

  64. spoiler says:

    Gi JQE: There lies the problem. As bad as the goaltending has been. The zone coverage system doesnt work. Too easy to beat. Never seen an nhl club try such an extreme agressive style. It appears easy to defeat….If Eakins does not adjust it … Say hi to Sam rienheart…. So frustrating. I don’t buy that there are that many breakdowns in the system resulting in those range of shots. Something has to give.Signed one very frustrated oiler fan.

    You must be kidding. The Swarm is so obviously not th reason they are losing hockey games. The system is 6 games in and already sawing off at EVs. It’s only going to get better.

    Most goals, like the Smid-Hemsky schmozzle mentioned above, have come from giveaways with decent possession… Besides the goalie gaffes and the PP markers, that is. That’s not on the swarm, which is going to have its share of errors, but is breaking up a helluva lot of plays right now. We were all over this Caps team till their fragile confidence and equally fragile netminding collapsed again. That’s not on the coach (who is not going to go mistake-free through the season either and it is ridculous to expect so).

  65. Woodguy says:

    Looking at Mike’s site, 4-93-83 got destroyed by Ovechkin’s line and 6-27-57 ate Ovechkin’s lunch.

    I wonder if a big part of the disparity has to do with the pair behind them.

    Smid was a -10 vs. Ovechkin, while Belov was positive.

    Didn’t watch much of the game (family over)

    Looks like the D pairings were all over the place as the corsi’s don’t align much.

    Was Smid with J.Shultz for a while?

    If so, did someone smack Eakins and tell him “No!”?

  66. fifthcartel says:

    So, when Crosby and co. annihilate the Oilers tomorrow, what happens?

  67. spoiler says:

    spoiler: You must be kidding. The Swarm is so obviously not th reason they are losing hockey games. The system is 6 games in and already sawing off at EVs. It’s only going to get better.Most goals, like the Smid-Hemsky schmozzle mentioned above, have come from giveaways with decent possession… Besides the goalie gaffes and the PP markers, that is. That’s not on the swarm, which is going to have its share of errors, but is breaking up a helluva lot of plays right now. We were all over this Caps team till their fragile confidence and equally fragile netminding collapsed again. That’s not on the coach (who is not going to go mistake-free through the season either and it is ridculous to expect so).

    In fact if we exclude the Canuck game, which might just have been the flu, this team has done better than saw-off at EVs. That something Kruger didn’t do. The PP was humming coming into this game, and can’t be ciritcized on one bad game… and the PK has been affected by the goalies, supposedly your best penalty-killer.

    I’m okay with Eakins thus far.

  68. Woodguy says:

    fifthcartel:
    So, when Crosby and co. annihilate the Oilers tomorrow, what happens?

    Move on to the next game.

    Poor Doobie.

    3rd game in 4 nights is something like a 20% chance at a win.

  69. Gerta Rauss says:

    Woodguy:

    Poor Doobie.

    I’d go back to Labarbera. He wasn’t very good tonight but he had a decent 3rd period.It’s not much, but it’s something.

    You have to chuckle that we’ve got to this point this early in the season, but here we are.

    Give Dubnyk the start on Thursday.

  70. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    spoiler: In fact if we exclude the Canuck game, which might just have been the flu, this team has done better than saw-off at EVs. That something Kruger didn’t do. The PP was humming coming into this game, and can’t be ciritcized on one bad game… and the PK has been affected by the goalies, supposedly your best penalty-killer.

    I’m okay with Eakins thus far.

    The Oilers are at 0.69 5v5 F/A. (23rd in the league)

    That’s a long, long way from a saw off.

  71. rickithebear says:

    96 points to make playoffs.
    10 OTL is the average.
    we have 3Pts from 6 games.
    need 93 from 76 must go +17GM

    42-25-9 .612
    Got to play like a good detroit for the rest of the year.

  72. fishman says:

    First time post. Have been reading for some time and enjoy the (mostly) intelligent posts, unlike like some other sites that tend to get hi jacked by the juveniles! As an Edmonton sports fan since the early 60′s it truly is a sad time in our pro sports history. Hard to believe our teams could be so poorly managed after being flagship franchises. Fans in this city deserve better. After watching tonight’s performance it appears the suffering may continue a while! Glad to see fans are still passionate in their support and hopefully at some point that support will be rewarded.

  73. spoiler says:

    This team is fragile. It has no resilience. No confidence. No backbone.

    In a band, the drummer provides the backbone. On an NHL team, the role of the drummer falls to the goalie.

    We are a band without a drummer.

  74. G Money says:

    spoiler:
    This team is fragile. It has no resilience. No confidence. No backbone.

    In a band, the drummer provides the backbone. On an NHL team, the role of the drummer falls to the goalie.

    We are a band without a drummer.

    Maybe we can sign Neil Peart to a goaltending contract.

  75. TheOtherJohn says:

    Well , turkey was tonight, the meal not the game.

    Sat at end of table and could just catch glimpses of the score. Turkey might also have been the call for tonight’s game too. Real problem is that next 4 games are all against playoff teams. Thankfully it is only the weak nancy Eastern division playoff teams.

    Realize our SF/SA looks better than last year (God knows B Stauffer tells us that over and over) but we are not playing the good teams yet and Vancouver, who someone here recently called a “done team”, lit us up like a Christmas tree (44-23).

    I would go with LaBarbera again because DD must have fragile psyche, or at least he should.

    If at the end of October we don’t have 10 pts I’d identify the players I want to play with 2-3-4 years from now and move out some of the other young core. Yup I’d identify the guys you wanna keep and move out some other guys. Hockey is not about having the prettiest team. It’s about having a successful team. Andrew Ladd is not a highly skilled top 4-5 talented player. He just helps you win. We do not, outside of Peron & Gordon, have enough guys like that

    What a shitty time of the year to be looking for a goalie. Thankfully we have young studs banging on door from farm team drafted by the big club ……. Oh wait

    Late evening Oct 22 we know how bad the bleeding is: we win 2/4 and limp into November or if we lose 3 or 4 of 4 & it certainly looks like a complete and utter shit show. Have no clue how this rests at Eakins feet but knowing organizational motto: f**k no, that not my department, that’s coaching” expect Eakins job may then be in jeopardy.

    Sure hope we don’t see what loses to 3/4 of Pitt/NYI/Ott/Mont look like

  76. Gerta Rauss says:

    spoiler:

    We are a band without a drummer.

    …he died in a bizarre gardening accident…

  77. Lowetide says:

    fishman:
    First time post. Have been reading for some time and enjoy the (mostly) intelligent posts, unlike like some other sites that tend to get hi jacked by the juveniles! As an Edmonton sports fan since the early 60′s it truly is a sad time in our pro sports history. Hard to believe our teams could be so poorly managed after being flagship franchises. Fans in this city deserve better. After watching tonight’s performance it appears the suffering may continue a while! Glad to see fans are still passionate in their support and hopefully at some point that support will be rewarded.

    Welcome, Fishman. I’m thinking this is Eskimos about 1970? :-)

  78. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    G Money: Maybe we can sign Neil Peart to a goaltending contract.

    Betty White is a free agent.

  79. Gi JQE says:

    Saw off of what ? Corsi? I respect it. But give me a break. Allowing few chances but all are grade a…. Doesn’t work. Seems like the swarm with this much aggression is a very very high risk and high reward. Breaks up plays? Yes. But when it breaks down even a little there is a great chance. Seems like a little less aggressive approach results in less open ice with a break down. And since we are not the best defensive team around… I think it expects too much of a flawless result. Imho

  80. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    spoiler:
    This team is fragile. It has no resilience. No confidence. No backbone.

    In a band, the drummer provides the backbone. On an NHL team, the role of the drummer falls to the goalie.

    We are a band without a drummer.

    “It can’t always happen to every, can it? the law of averages says…”

    Oilers Goaltenders = Spinal Tap Drummers

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0QdAbGym8A

  81. G Money says:

    Rankings to mull:

    Oilers are 9th in the league in SA/60 at 27.8.
    Oilers are 11th in the league in GF/60 at 2.94.
    Oilers are 17th in the league in CF% (5v5) at 49.4% (0.1% behind Detroit).
    Oilers are 22nd in the league in SF/60 at 28.9.
    Oilers are 29th in the league at GA/60 at 4.74. I’m shocked that someone is worse.
    Oilers are 30th in the league at sv % at .829 – worse than the next worst team by 310 basis points. THREE HUNDRED AND TEN.

  82. spoiler says:

    Gerta Rauss: …he died in a bizarre gardening accident…

    Best leave it… unsolved.

  83. fishman says:

    Lowetide,

    Yep. Was there when a Commonwealth seat was a hard ticket to get (no seats blocked off!) Was excited watching the WHA Oilers. Not a lot of joy these days!

  84. Lowetide says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Betty White is a free agent.

    And she’s about the same age as Bower was when he arrived in Toronto.

  85. godot10 says:

    G Money:
    Rankings to mull:

    Oilers are 9th in the league in SA/60 at 27.8.
    Oilers are 11th in the league in GF/60 at 2.94.
    Oilers are 17th in the league in CF% (5v5) at 49.4% (0.1% behind Detroit).
    Oilers are 22nd in the league in SF/60 at 28.9.
    Oilers are 29th in the league at GA/60 at 4.74. I’m shocked that someone is worse.
    Oilers are 30th in the league at sv % at .829 – worse than the next worst team by 310 basis points. THREE HUNDRED AND TEN.

    Eakins is the anti-Carlyle. I guess they didn’t shake hands on Saturday.

  86. spoiler says:

    G Money: Rankings to mull:Oilers are 9th in the league in SA/60 at 27.8.Oilers are 11th in the league in GF/60 at 2.94.Oilers are 17th in the league in CF% (5v5) at 49.4% (0.1% behind Detroit).Oilers are 22nd in the league in SF/60 at 28.9.Oilers are 29th in the league at GA/60 at 4.74. I’m shocked that someone is worse.Oilers are 30th in the league at sv % at .829 – worse than the next worst team by 310 basis points. THREE HUNDRED AND TEN.

    It’s like a 30 day Bill during a government shutdown.

  87. godot10 says:

    The opposition only needs one shot to score because of the 5-bell swarm breakdowns and the lousy goaltending. No second shots required. Lousy opposition Corsi.

    I

  88. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: The Oilers are at 0.69 5v5 F/A. (23rd in the league)

    That’s a long, long way from a saw off.

    Is this meant to be fenwick against? can’t be, or your numbers are way off.

  89. gcw_rocks says:

    In general, I come here for LT’s unending optimism. I am long on the record that I thought hiring MacT was a monumentally stupid, and not at least trying for a veteran coach with the crop of vets available this summer was a bad idea. But I still am a fan of the team and I am looking for any bright sides I can find.

    But so far, all I am hearing is the Oilers have come up with whole new ways to lose, and the new coach who seemed so smart at press conferences in the summer may be creating a rift between the team and a probable franchise player and the reasons stated make no sense.

    What’s the silver lining here, ’cause I am struggling to find it? I mean, seriously, I looked up the ISS top 30 this evening to see who were the lottery picks. And its the middle of freaking October!

  90. TheOtherJohn says:

    Lowetide: And she’s about the same age as Bower was when he arrived in Toronto.

    Actually Al Betty White is just shy of 3 times Bower age when he arrived in Toronto and Bowers was old! Sure could use his .913 S% from 58/59 right about now

  91. Lowetide says:

    fishman:
    Lowetide,

    Yep. Was there when a Commonwealth seat was a hard ticket to get (no seats blocked off!) Was excited watching the WHA Oilers. Not a lot of joy these days!

    I remember the first game I saw at Commonwealth, met a girl whose Dad had tickets. We sat lower than I’d ever been at Clark, about 35 yard line on the far side (side closest to LRT). I was in awe, that defense killed the Roughriders that day. Joy.

  92. spoiler says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Is this meant to be fenwick against? can’t be, or your numbers are way off.

    I didn’t even bother. Not worth it.

  93. Gi JQE says:

    godot10:
    The opposition only needs one shot to score because of the 5-bell swarm breakdowns and the lousy goaltending.No second shots required.Lousy opposition Corsi.

    I

    This is my concern. Maybe the guys will figure it out. But everytime the system cracks it is a goal … Becuase the chance allowed is top notch… Hopefully that will change. But seems to be a result of the insain aggression in the d zone.

  94. spoiler says:

    spoiler: I didn’t even bother. Not worth it.

    I’m just encouraged that the Distinguished Silly Fux took his Captain Happy pills in the hopes he has a Dead Cat Bounce.

  95. justDOit says:

    To quench your thirst for blood – or at the very least, change: Biron on waivers.

  96. fuzzy muppet says:

    justDOit,

    No on Biron for a bunch of reasons, the main one being he’s old and not very good.

    They pretty much can’t anyway because they’d be maxed out on contracts if they get him…good thing Cam Abney has a contract.

  97. SK Oiler Fan says:

    I thought they played well for about 50 min of that one. 1st Wash goal was killer and that PP will punish most teams. If Perron and Nuge score on their grade A chances or if the Oiler PP had their head out of their asses it’s a different game. Holtby is underated IMO.
    I’ve watched a bit if Pitt this year and wasn’t that impressed. Tough call on the G for tomorrow night.
    I dunno, maybe trap it up and play Minn Wild hockey until the G position is settled?

  98. Lowetide says:

    I think Eakins got it right. Lots of good things, an early goal, not a lot of shots against and then three minutes in the liquor cabinet and you’re back to day one.

  99. Gerta Rauss says:

    spoiler: I’m just encouraged that the Distinguished Silly Fux took his Captain Happy pills in the hopes he has a Dead Cat Bounce.

    …resulting in a Fake Craig MacTavish

  100. 719 says:

    By eye, the Oilers are a much better team this year under Eakins. The results are not showing it yet (largely due to goaltending).

    Not on these boards, but a lot of people are questioning MacT’s moves (yes already). Belov, Perron, Gordon and Jonesuu have all been wonderful finds/trades by the GM.

    Kruger did seem to have the penalty kill down to a sceience, but he also had the big Finn (whose name escapes me at the moment) who was so good at penalty killing, but lousy at most other things.

    The results are disheartening, so much so I am making a camping box so I can go out in the woods for a few days, just go get away from the naysayers.

    Rome wasn’t built in a day, and neither will these Oilers. All signs seem to be pointing in the right direction…

  101. Ribs says:

    Lowetide:
    I think Eakins got it right. Lots of good things, an early goal, not a lot of shots against and then three minutes in the liquor cabinet and you’re back to day one.

    It’s going to be very hard to win a lot of games if you have to play them perfectly. This is a very unforgiving league.

  102. Colonel Obvious says:

    There are a lot of people here who have checked their intelligences at the door and are letting the end results colour their judgement of what they are watching. If you PVRed the games go back and watch them again. What you will see is:

    1) The Oilers are outplaying the opposition 5/5 game after game.
    2) Whatever the effect of the “swarm” or “Eakins” it is not resulting in more or better scoring chances against. That’s a simple fact. If you think it is you shouldn’t be allowed to drive because your judgement is impaired. You have forgotten the past five years and what bad defense actually looks like.

    If you don’t agree with both 1) and 2) you don’t have a seat in this conversation. It is like arguing with a child. Just stop, you are humiliating yourselves.

    If ou’d like to be an adult and bring up a legitimate worry, don’t bring up how the Oilers have played. They have played very well. Bring up the soft schedule.

    So let’s remember the facts.

    1) By shots for and against, which is the only thing that matters, this team is much, much, better.
    2) The Oilers are not allowing a disproportionate number of quality scoring chances. That’s simply foolishness. There is absolutely no evidence this is the case. Tooth fairy thinking.
    3) They’ve had the worst goaltending any team has had in a decade.
    4) You can win with average goaltending but you can’t win the way these guys have played. The 85 Oilers wouldn’t with this kind of goaltending.

    Don’t overcomplicate things. This is all on the goaltending. There is nothing else wrong.

  103. art vandelay says:

    Forget the 4-2L, how did the Oilers do on the relCorsi Sledgehammer?

  104. Gret99zky says:

    Rome was founded around 750 BC and became one of the most important and powerful cities in world history around 250 BC.

    So it took about 500 years to build Rome.

    Just sayin.

  105. CrazyCoach says:

    Joining this discussion late here, but here are my thoughts.

    I’m not a big fan of the swarm. As many have posted on here earlier, it may work at the lower levels, but the margin for error is very slim. Other highly effective systems, such as the NZ trap and 2-3 (AKA the LW Lock) were successful because they really favoured teams that could play disciplined hockey. The NZ trap was so successful that it basically changed the way hockey was coached and taught. The reason for its huge success, was that it was easy to execute, easy to learn, was quite forgiving if one assignment was missed, and you could play it for sustained periods of time regardless of skill or fitness level. I’m not sure the Swarm even meets a single criteria contrasted beside the NZ Trap. Correct me if I’m wrong here, but I see a system with too many flaws.

    I was so excited about this season. I thought Eakins was the guy to lead this team to the next level, but he is looking more and more like the next George Burnett.

  106. G Money says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Betty White is a free agent.

    She has mad skillz as a bucket banger, I’ll give you that, but her glove hand is no longer NHL calibre.

  107. Gi JQE says:

    CO.

    ” By shots for and against, which is the only thing that matters, this team is much, much, better”

    Really that is the only thing that matters……? I thought GF and GA decided games….

    Very condescending . So if I disagree with you I am childish? Comeon. I thought everyone could voice their opinions here. I have felt the quality of chances have increase but quantity is way down. That’s just imho.

  108. G Money says:

    CrazyCoach: Correct me if I’m wrong here, but I see a system with too many flaws.

    Umm, OK, but:

    WSH Goal 1 – Belov hits the puck carrier with Hall covering up the boards, the puck squirts loose straight to the Nuge, who starts skating it out with possession and no pressure. All the Oilers immediately start to break out. Hemsky is exiting the zone at high speed not looking back, and Nuge for reasons known only to him passes it to him. Naturally, since he wasn’t looking it goes right by him and straight to the Washington player at the blueline, who passes it to Laich. He’s in a good scoring position, but puts a softie on net that Betty White could have stopped and it goes in. Killer goal. The primary error on that goes to Barbie, but the Nuge gets equal blame. It’s the same story we’ve seen a ton – stupid giveaways on clear possession zone exits. The swarm is to blame how?

    WSH Goal 2 – 4 on 3 PPG. These are hard to stop, but NSchultz for some reason decides that lying down in front of Barbie is the right way to defend, fails to cover the shooter and fails to stop the pass over. The swarm is to blame how?

    WSH Goal 3 – Ovechkin skates to the middle of the ice and takes a shot on net, which misses. Shot goes behind the net and the Wsh player beats JSchultz to the puck, and skates into the Corner. Smid moves from the centre to pressure him, leaving Ovechkin uncovered. Before Smid arrives, the Wsh player passes to Ovie, who has floated back into the middle. Neither RNH nor Hemsky pay attention to Ovie until too late, and they don’t move to cover him until the pass is already on its way, giving him time to shoot. It’s a good shot, but nothing special, and Barbie tries and fails to squeeze it between glove hand and pad. Primary errors to Barbie and whoever of RNH/Hemsky was supposed to cover Ovie, minor error to JSchultz, and possibly and error on Smid if he wasn’t supposed to be the one to pressure the puck carrier in the corner. But I saw nothing of the swarm in this sequence, just forwards slow in poor position and slow to cover.

    WSH Goal 4 – PPG. Terrible coverage on this one, three Oilers in a line in front of the net, one in the middle high. Like this: .:. I have no idea what they thought they were covering, but it was terrible. Whatever it was, it wasn’t the swarm.

    So there you have it. One zone exit giveaway ending in a softie, one 4-3 PPG, one fire drill ending in a softie, and a poorly covered PPG.

    Maybe the criticisms of the swarm are relevant from other games, I don’t know.

    What I can say for sure is that it had nothing to do with this loss. This one’s on the RNH line, Smid, and Barbie.

  109. Gi JQE says:

    CrazyCoach,

    This.

    You said it much better then I could.

  110. striatic says:

    Colonel Obvious: Don’t overcomplicate things. This is all on the goaltending. There is nothing else wrong.

    While I agree with your general sentiment, is there really nothing wrong with the PK as well, beyond the goaltending?

  111. Thor762 says:

    Fuzzy Britches tweeting that “St Louis Blues have interest in Pitlick have offered Elliot in trade to the Oilers as per Garfield.”

    What do you gentlemen think of that sort of possible trade?

  112. denny33 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    looks like the 1 line had a tough night.

    This is a sentence I NEVER thought I would see in here…

    RNH was -3 in Toronto with a similar aggregious turnover racing towards his own goal….as seen against Montreal.

    Ryan Smyth and Arco near the top of our point leaders….

  113. G Money says:

    Thor762:
    Fuzzy Britches tweeting that “St Louis Blues have interest in Pitlick have offered Elliot in trade to the Oilers as per Garfield.”

    What do you gentlemen think of that sort of possible trade?

    Oh lord, that’s just what we need – a career .909 goalie who hasn’t played a single game yet this season.

    Then again, if the Oilers had gotten .909 goaltending, they’d be 4-2, or maybe 3-2-1.

  114. OilBuzz says:

    Not sure what to think of this swarm defence… Is it possible that the system is partially responsible for the horrendous svpct? Yeah, we win the CORSI battle, but the shots we DO give up contain a lot of premium chances. Doesn’t this just automatically destroy any goalie’s svpct?

  115. striatic says:

    Thor762:
    Fuzzy Britches tweeting that “St Louis Blues have interest in Pitlick have offered Elliot in trade to the Oilers as per Garfield.”

    What do you gentlemen think of that sort of possible trade?

    both teams go equally unimproved?

    ok, so Pitlick was supposed to be the 3LW PRV replacement, so it is funny STL would want both.

  116. denny33 says:

    Colonel Obvious,

    Spokeperson for the governmetnof Iraq during the 2nd Gulf war?

    No problems. Everything is Great.

    Numerous chances by Washington including the patented opposition player in front of our net with NOBODY around.

  117. striatic says:

    OilBuzz:
    Not sure what to think of this swarm defence… Is it possible that the system is partially responsible for the horrendous svpct? Yeah, we win the CORSI battle, but the shots we DO give up contain a lot of premium chances. Doesn’t this just automatically destroy any goalie’s svpct?

    if you go back goal by goal, the swarm is responsible for a couple goals here and there. literally 2 or 3.

    the big problems are turnovers, bad PK and bad goaltending.

    the team has weaknesses, and weaknesses probably due to bad systems coaching, but the swarm isn’t one of the problems.

    i say this, being very skeptical of the swarm when we first learned about it. i’d love it if that were the problem. that would be much easier to solve than what is really wrong, but watching the games and looking at the goals one by one, the goals against aren’t because of the swarm.

    yes, the few chances against ARE of high quality, usually, leading to bad sv%, maybe, but the swarm isn’t why those chances are often so bad. passing the puck to the other team, and bad PK will lead to tons quality chances against before the swarm enters into consideration.

  118. cabbiesmacker says:

    I can remember a time when someone would say “Check out the boobs behind the bench” at an Oiler game and it had a whole different meaning.

  119. sliderule says:

    The oilers are getting beat mainly by brutal goaltending.

    They are also getting beat by poor development coaching.

    Hall and Eberle were allowed to commit turnovers and not mark a man in the defensive zone because they were providing offensive flash for the fans.

    Now Eakins has to mold them without losing them.It’s harder when they are semi veterans.

    If Renney and RK had done with them what Eakins is doing with Yakupov the oil would have fewer problems.

  120. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    art vandelay:
    Forget the 4-2L, how did the Oilers do on the relCorsi Sledgehammer?

    Hi Art!

  121. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Is this meant to be fenwick against? can’t be, or your numbers are way off.

    Forgive me.

    I was dealing in a number that really matters.

    That would be GF/GA 5V5 F/A

    0.69

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/teamstats.htm?fetchKey=20142ALLSAAAll&sort=goals5On5ForAgainstRatio&viewName=summary

  122. CrazyCoach says:

    striatic: if you go back goal by goal, the swarm is responsible for a couple goals here and there. literally 2 or 3.
    the big problems are turnovers, bad PK and bad goaltending.
    the team has weaknesses, and weaknesses probably due to bad systems coaching, but the swarm isn’t one of the problems.

    I respectfully beg to differ. A good system, should allow for some creativity (See the KLM Line under Tikhonov), be easy to teach, and not be so complicated that players are making basic mistakes when they hit the ice. I’m not a specific play person, but my experience tells me that when there are as many turnovers and mistakes as I see out there, the players are A) Not drinking the Kool-aid, or B) They simply don’t get it.

    I also know that in high performance programs such as the BC Best Ever program (which is a prelude to U-18 and U-20 teams), each year every team MUST play the same system in terms of a forecheck, and d-zone coverage. It varies from year to year, but chances are it will be a 1-2-2 forecheck and a simple zone defense. If you deviate from these as a coach, you will be brought upstairs with the higher ups for a come-to-jesus meeting. There are many reasons for doing this. One is to see if you can actually teach and coach a system for short-term competition. One of the main reasons they do it for players, is to allow them to learn an easy system, so they are free to play the game and let the true talent rise to the top to make player evaluations easier. In my time in that program, they guys who made the fewest mistakes were usually players who I see nowadays playing in the U-20 or even the NHL.

    When I see Dallas Eakins with the swarm, I see a group of players put into a system that is an efficient system, but requires awhile to learn. When I see mistakes, basic GED-knowledge mistakes happen game in game out, it tells me the system has a long ways to go or it isn’t going to work with this particular group of players.

    And in the NHL of today, much like those term competitions Hockey Canada plans its entire high performance program around, time is not of the essence.

    Time has come today!

  123. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Forgive me.

    I was dealing in a number that really matters.

    That would be GF/GA 5V5 F/A

    0.69

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/teamstats.htm?fetchKey=20142ALLSAAAll&sort=goals5On5ForAgainstRatio&viewName=summary

    Thanks for clarifying. the way you had it written was quite confusing.

    I don’t think anyone credible would discount GF/GA, esp. 5×5. However, I don’t think any credible person would quote this stat without reference to such an obviously relevant variable as sv%, or mention sample size.

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