OILERS AT MAPLE LEAFS, G5 13-14

Saturdays as a kid meant watching the HNIC at my Grandpa’s house. My Dad would be there, along with warm beer (Grandpa liked his beer room temp) and the room was filled with light from one strong bulb that spread shadows and created weird images on those plaster walls that featured rough surfaces no one under 30 would remember. The Leafs would usually roar ahead and as the third period rolled along the adults would begin the prep for cards while I would start thinking of ways to stay up (it was an epic fail, 60s parents were kind of communisits–speak when spoken to, it’s bedtime because I said so–that kind of thing).

The Toronto of my youth was the one in my imagination–the words and drawings in the ‘Art Linkletter Encyclopedia‘ and the hockey Leafs. Big Frank Mahovlich was a powerhouse, you could hear the fans rise as the Big M wound up and passed center on his way into the offensive zone. My  favorite player was Dave Keon, he was kind of, well, perfect.

That video shows some nice footage of Keon, George Armstrong and Jacques Plante, along with young defensive tomfoolery from Jim McKenny. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has been compared to a lot of great players (Datsyuk!!!!) but the first player of this type I remember was Keon. A wonderful penalty-killer and defensive center, Keon’s footspeed was insane and his anticipation the same. RHN is taller, I suspect he’s a better offensive player (Keon was no slouch) but they are similar in their approach to the game: both skated miles and miles in the name of upsetting timing.

Cherish this one, gents. When he’s gone, we’ll miss him.

JASON SMITH

The Oilers have had some good fortune when looking to Toronto for defensive help. They acquired Jason Smith from the Leafs in 1999 for a 2nd and a 4th, and they acquired the draft pick that would be Steve Smith for a fringe winger (Reg Thomas) right after the 1979 expansion draft. With Jake Gardiner apparently available, I wonder if the Oilers might attempt to pick him up and pair him with Justin Schultz–that would be a lot of chaos but it worked in college.

LIE BACK AND THINK OF ENGELLAND

Seems like half of the EJ has writers are mentioning his name, and the other half are too. I’m not absolutely certain the Oilers need a depth defenseman, although they haven’t replaced Theo Peckham/Mark Fistric and maybe that’s their 7th D when everything gets sussed out. I’m not used to cheering for a team with more than 7 blueline options, so this plethora stuff is new to me. I would guess the depth chart right now looks like:

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

There’s like 14 guys on this list who are possible NHL defenders at some point this season, that’s way more depth than we’ve seen in the past. I’m not sure how many of these kids will be quality, but there’s no rush to bring any of them up at this point.

bay leaf

 

Pierre Lebrun has an article up quoting an NHL exec saying that aside from Jordan Eberle and Sam Gagner “he thought the team’s young forwards aren’t fully committed to becoming complete players. They’re not paying the price to play a 200-foot game. He said that’s especially noticeable on a team where the blue line, aside from Justin Schultz — whom he refers to as a “stud” — has “neither depth nor dimension.”

I’m calling bullshit across the board. NO MENTION of Taylor Hall’s ability to push the river, no mention of Ryan Nugent-Hopkins as an emerging two-way talent, and the two guys the exec mentioned would NOT be exceptions in this area (and I love both guys as hockey players). The blueline has better depth and dimension, and not to be an asshole but Justin Schultz is putting the k in chaos pretty much every damn shift.

So that executive is doing what NHL execs apparently do routinely–turning to page 11 in the “what to say when media asks” of the TIRED OLD HOCKEY MEN handbook and having a lash. These kids aren’t perfect, God knows that’s true, but when you’re asking Taylor Hall (as a for instance) to move to center and take instruction from his THIRD HEAD COACH IN FOUR YEARS there might just be a period of adjustment there. If you’re saying “there seems to be some confusion here, Orly” I’m with you. But to call out young players who’ve been through this gong show for lack of commitment? Go to hell.

I’ll post the lineups when they appear, might be some juggling. I’d give $ to see a victory tonight, it would be a very nice end to a couple of difficult weeks to be an Oiler fan.

 

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

579 Responses to "OILERS AT MAPLE LEAFS, G5 13-14"

Newer Comments »
  1. Ben says:

    So is tonight finally the night when the metrics produce the EDM/TOR results that many seen to think they should? Bernier’s save% is about as sustainable as Hertl’s shooting%. And maybe we’re due for a little luck around the net. (But I thought that for most of last season too.) Still, I’m calling Oil 5 – 3.

    A question about save % that’s surely been asked before: would it be remotely worthwhile to track this stat for tenders at different stages of the game? Are there players who tighten up when the game is tied or within a goal – but might be lights out protecting a wider margin? Would it be worth considering quality of chances when protecting a lead vs. playing catch-up? The Fuhr metric?

  2. theres oil in virginia says:

    I’m a 60s parent. The rest of society can fall apart if they damn well want to, but not my house. So far (he’s only 5.5), he appreciates the structure as long as he always feels the love.

    Have you ever seen anyone who can glue the puck to his stick like RNH can? I love watching that.

    Notice that Taylor Hall’s game got significantly better the moment he switched back to wing?

  3. Philosophil says:

    Id be curious if the Exec in question is based in the West or East.

    And, we can’t overlook the gamesmanship in all of this, reducing trade value of potential Oil prospects.

  4. Lowetide says:

    theres oil in virginia:
    I’m a 60s parent.The rest of society can fall apart if they damn well want to, but not my house.So far (he’s only 5.5), he appreciates the structure as long as he always feels the love.

    Have you ever seen anyone who can glue the puck to his stick like RNH can?I love watching that.

    Notice that Taylor Hall’s game got significantly better the moment he switched back to wing?

    One thing I’ll say about my parents: they kept us busy, so by the time we had the freedom to get in trouble, we had a little bit of sense. Still did dumb stuff, though. :-)

  5. Sterling_Archer says:

    I know some people.

    Anyway the point I’m making is, although he is a great offensive player, he is far from a complete player.

  6. hunter1909 says:

    First off: MacT /Lowe always ALWAYS loved brinkmanship. The franchise, the team, the fans all have to put up with this appalling personality/character trait.

    Second: Eakins, a prototypical hard assed coach INSTANTLY demoted Yaks to the 3rd line, and that piker Hemsky steals his rightful spot.

    So now one of the 1st magical overall picks is wasting away on the vine, but Eakins is proving himself to Lowe/MacT so who cares?

    I wish Hemsky would break a leg. Seriously.

  7. Woodguy says:

    I’m calling bullshit across the board. NO MENTION of Taylor Hall’s ability to push the river, no mention of Ryan Nugent-Hopkins as an emerging two-way talent, and the two guys the exec mentioned would NOT be exceptions in this area (and I love both guys as hockey players). The blueline has better depth and dimension, and not to be an asshole but Justin Schultz is putting the k in chaos pretty much every damn shift.
    So that executive is doing what NHL execs apparently do routinely–turning to page 11 in the “what to say when media asks” of the TIRED OLD HOCKEY MEN handbook and having a lash. These kids aren’t perfect, God knows that’s true, but when you’re asking Taylor Hall (as a for instance) to move to center and take instruction from his THIRD HEAD COACH IN FOUR YEARS there might just be a period of adjustment there. If you’re saying “there seems to be some confusion here, Orly” I’m with you. But to call out young players who’ve been through this gong show for lack of commitment? Go to hell.

    Exactly.

    Eastern Conference GM of the year traded for Western Conference Concrete pylon and gave up 2 2nd rounders for the pleasure.

    Especially with last year’s lack of Conference cross over games, Eastern Conference Executive sees less of the Western Conference games than the average Newfoundland fan with insomnia.

    Pure crap served up with generic quote sprinkles to make it look good.

    Why in hell would Lebrun ask an Eastern Conference Executive about the Oilers?

    Probably because he covers the Eastern Conference, doesn’t have Western Conference relationships and hasn’t seen the Oilers since Smith was Captain.

    That piece is as interesting as unsweetened oatmeal and soggy toast.

    I hope the Oilers go out and hang a lickin’ on the Leafs just to get the media and everyone to stfu about “what’s wrong with the Oilers”

    Also,

    Bernier career SV% .917
    Bernier SV% this season .974

    Dubnyk career SV% .912
    Dubnyk SV% this season .847

    Let the regression begin!!!

    Also,

    Hall scores 4, breaks Kadri’s nose with a nasty elbow that doesn’t get called then jumps on Phaneuf’s back, rides him like a Gaucho while beating him with his stick and screaming “I’M STROKING MY DAMIEN COX!!”

    Go Oilers!!

    *clap,clap*

  8. Woodguy says:

    Sterling_Archer,

    I know some people.

    So you’re in the locker room all the time to see this eh?

  9. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909:
    First off: MacT /Lowe always ALWAYS loved brinkmanship. The franchise, the team, the fans all have to put up with this appalling personality/character trait.

    Second: Eakins, a prototypical hard assed coach INSTANTLYdemoted Yaks to the 3rd line, and that piker Hemsky steals his rightful spot.

    So now one of the 1st magical overall picks is wasting away on the vine, but Eakins is proving himself to Lowe/MacT so who cares?

    I wish Hemsky would break a leg. Seriously.

    Gifting players spots on the roster and in the line up instead of making them earn it has been part of the systematic rot on Kingsway.

    This is a breath of fresh air.

  10. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide,
    It’s amazing any kid survives puberty. Especially boys!

    Ben: So is tonight finally the night when the metrics produce the EDM/TOR results that many seen to think they should?

    Even though statistically speaking it doesn’t mean much (1 game), I’m still interested in that storyline.

  11. Sterling_Archer says:

    Woodguy:
    Sterling_Archer,

    He only thinks about himself and if you were in the locker room at any point you would be able to see that

    So you’re in the locker room all the time to see this eh?

    I know some people.

  12. Woodguy says:

    Sterling_Archer: I know some people.

    Just stop please.

    Take that crap to another forum, there are lots out there to choose from.

  13. Lowetide says:

    Sterling_Archer: I know some people.

    This isn’t proof, this is hearsay. Please stick to facts, or I’ll have to delete your post. Thanks!

  14. Colonel Obvious says:

    Woodguy is all over it but I’m going to call bullshit on that one as well.

    Even if true, it is still bullshit. If there is one thing I know it is that for all the importance that so-called hockey guys place upon character their judgment of character is terrible. .

    Hockey is an insular, tribal, world built on folk wisdom and nepotism. Hockey insiders are always commenting on things they know nothing about based on conversations they’ve had at the bar. This why the hockey media is so bad. The views of the media are prejudiced by the conversations they have but don’t report. This is the origin of the all the “body language” nonsense we’re always hearing.

    But it’s all garbage. The connection between reputation and performance is tangential at best. It also shows how these guys don’t actually watch the games. They are too busy talking to each other. And if they do watch the games it hardly matters, because people see what they expect to see.

    Here’s a truth that I will give to all of you. Reality isn’t strong enough to impose itself upon our ideas about it.

  15. Woodguy says:

    Colonel Obvious:
    Woodguy is all over it but I’m going to call bullshit on that one as well.

    Even if true, it is still bullshit.If there is one thing I know it is that for all the importance that so-called hockey guys place upon character their judgment of character is terrible..

    Hockey is an insular, tribal, world built on folk wisdom and nepotism.Hockey insiders are always commenting on things they know nothing about based on conversations they’ve had at the bar.This why the hockey media is so bad.The views of the media are prejudiced by the conversations they have but don’t report.Thisis the origin of the all the “body language” nonsense we’re always hearing.

    But it’s all garbage.The connection between reputation and performance is tangential at best.It also shows how these guys don’t actually watch the games.They are too busy talking to each other.And if they do watch the games it hardly matters, because people see what they expect to see.

    Here’s a truth that I will give to all of you.Reality isn’t strong enough to impose itself upon our ideas about it.

    Glad you decided to comment because you explained my point much better than I could have.

  16. Lowetide says:

    Colonel with the big fly. Spot on. If Hemsky was from Kingston he’d be a star.

  17. Lowetide says:

    Tobias Rieder with 2 goals in his first game with Portland of the AHL. Hah!

  18. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Oh, LT… I could read you wax poetic about your childhood for days. This is simply fantastically realized imagery:

    “My Dad would be there, along with warm beer (Grandpa liked his beer room temp) and the room was filled with light from one strong bulb that spread shadows and created weird images on those plaster walls that featured rough surfaces no one under 30 would remember. The Leafs would usually roar ahead and as the third period rolled along the adults would begin the prep for cards while I would start thinking of ways to stay up”

    Well done sir.

    And, there’s nothing quite like topping that gem off with some good ole’ “young manning” some ancient twist of a douche “old manning” the kids.

    Great article.

  19. Andropod says:

    As you may all know well, every team that gets put together, goes through 3 fundamental phases:
    Forming: The components are assembled
    Storming: They start sorting out their differences, establishing their interpersonal working relationships and pecking order, social order, and new processes.
    Norming: Function as a team, getting their job done in accordance with how good a team has been assembled.

    None of this is rocket science and it is a very typical process.

    We hit the reset button, and re-started the rebuild the day we replaced the GM , Coach and others, and gutted the roster. We cannot I reality lay the Dithers years on this crew. As it happened, Dithers let go the best coach he ever had when that coach threw up his hands and correctly declared that the team Dithers had assembled, could never get the job done, and it went downhill from there.

    So, the forming took place in the pre-season. Now we’re into the storming. There is almost nothing these Oiler can carry forward from the Dithers Disaster. So with the extent of the re-set, we should not be lashing this team (myself included in the culprits) for not playing like a team that has been 7 years in the making. The players that have been together a while are also having to learn new stuff.
    I saw the numbers of 20-30 games thrown out in this blog a while back, and from what I can see it is reasonable to expect that many games for this group to settle together and play consistently like they did in that wonderful third period against NJ, and anything better than that should come as a pleasant surprise.

    I totally support LT and others that we should stop thinking along the lines of wholesale change. This group can do the job with minor tweaks, and the more we caterwaul the longer it will take this team to pass from Storming to Norming.

    So as much as I utterly hate to see this team lose, I think the players, coach and GM hate it more so, and they can all do something about that as they learn the system that may work the best for a less big, faster and more fundamentally talented team than many of our opponents. As LT and others have also pointed out, the fundamentals are improving.

    We’ll get there. It will likely be in the last 40-50 games of the season that “Here come the Oilers” no longer means Thanksgiving for their opponents.

  20. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: Gifting players spots on the roster and in the line up instead of making them earn it has been part of the systematic rot on Kingsway.
    This is a breath of fresh air.

    Maybe, maybe not.

    From where I sit, Oiler’s look like a schooner headed for the reefs, with a mad captain(MacLowe) giving commands.

    ‘Gifting’ players doesn’t really bother me so much as ‘gifting’ GM’s.

    Eakins is going to do what Eakins is going to do. That said, Yakupov is a virtuoso talent on a scale Hemsky can only dream about. Top six Toby Petersonville 2013? Makes sense, sadly.

  21. godot10 says:

    What wakes me up at night?

    Stan Weir…err…Ryan Nugent-Hopkins….is powerless against the six curses on the Six Rings.

    In my nightmare….

    Lowe is Voldemort. Seven horcruxes, himself, and the six rings.

    Krueger was Dumbledore. Snapes (MacT) doublecrosses Dumblecore and allies with Voldemort instead, putting Lucius Malfoy (Eakins) in charge of Hogwarts.

    My dream must be Elizabethan theatre. I figure Nugent-Hopkins is Hermione. Bucky, of course, is Peter Pettigrew.

  22. Henry says:

    Lowetide,

    How is Kessey doing so far, Steve?

  23. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    A good friend of mine — another Oiler fan, also not of Edmonton — and I used to hang out with a Leaf fan when we all lived in London, Ont. The 3 of us had some very pointed, dickish conversations about that Jason Smith trade after a few too many pops and we were feeling a foot taller. He hated it every time. Typically, the conversation broke up around the time Cory Cross’ name surfaced and everyone got a little squirrelly and felt disturbingly slow.

  24. hunter1909 says:

    One thing the Montreal game showed, was that their top young line of large players could enter the offensive zone without much trouble.

    Oiler smurfs run around like so many leprechauns, spinning their little wheels in frustration, and getting assorted ‘love taps’ from the opposition who simply can’t seem to resist taking it out on them just for the devil of it.

  25. godot10 says:

    godot10,

    Hall does have a scar on his head, though.

  26. mumbai max says:

    Andropod:
    As you may all know well, every team that gets put together, goes through 3 fundamental phases:
    Forming: The components are assembled
    Storming: They start sorting out their differences, establishing their interpersonal working relationships and pecking order, social order, and new processes.
    Norming: Function as a team, getting their job done in accordance with how good a team has been assembled.

    None of this is rocket science and it is a very typical process.

    We hit the reset button, and re-started the rebuild the day we replaced the GM , Coach and others, and gutted the roster. We cannot I reality lay the Dithers years on this crew. As it happened, Dithers let go the best coach he ever had when that coach threw up his hands and correctly declared that the team Dithers had assembled, could never get the job done, and it went downhill from there.

    So, the forming took place in the pre-season. Now we’re into the storming. There is almost nothing these Oiler can carry forward from the Dithers Disaster. So with the extent of the re-set, we should not be lashing this team (myself included in the culprits) for not playing like a team that has been 7 years in the making. The players that have been together a while are also having to learn new stuff.
    I saw the numbers of 20-30 games thrown out in this blog a while back, and from what I can see it is reasonable to expect that many games for this group to settle together and play consistently like they did in that wonderful third period against NJ, and anything better than that should come as a pleasant surprise.

    I totally support LT and others that we should stop thinking along the lines of wholesale change. This group can do the job with minor tweaks, and the more we caterwaul the longer it will take this team to pass from Storming to Norming.

    So as much as I utterly hate to see this team lose, I think the players, coach and GM hate it more so, and they can all do something about that as they learn the system that may work the best for a less big, faster and more fundamentally talented team than many of our opponents. As LT and others have also pointed out, the fundamentals are improving.

    We’ll get there. It will likely be in the last 40-50 games of the season that “Here come the Oilers” no longer means Thanksgiving for their opponents.

    There are 4 elements to this model. You have missed the fourth, ‘performing’. I think we are all happy to go through the first three (again) in anticipation of the fourth.

  27. Brackenburied says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Oh, LT… I could read you wax poetic about your childhood for days. This is simply fantastically realized imagery:

    “My Dad would be there, along with warm beer (Grandpa liked his beer room temp) and the room was filled with light from one strong bulb that spread shadows and created weird images on those plaster walls that featured rough surfaces no one under 30 would remember. The Leafs would usually roar ahead and as the third period rolled along the adults would begin the prep for cards while I would start thinking of ways to stay up”

    Well done sir.

    And, there’s nothing quite like topping that gem off with some good ole’ “young manning” some ancient twist of a douche “old manning” the kids.

    Great article.

    And WG’s description of Hall’s night….great start to the day gentlemen. Thank you

  28. Henry says:

    I hope all the Eastern Conference executives and coaches fail to prepare for Hall Hemsky and especially the Nuge’s 200 foot game and instead focus on the missing Gagner and play their backup goalie. Can only help the road trip.

  29. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    hunter1909: and that piker Hemsky

    You Blackguard! You Mountebank! You Benedict Arnold! You Cur!

  30. flyfish1168 says:

    I realize it its only 4 games in and our corsi is better that previous. But I don’t believe our shots from the Kill zone or our driving to the net is any better. Watching the Oiler games I see lots of peripheral work and not enough work around the hard and rough areas

  31. godot10 says:

    My thoughts on Lebrun’s piece:

    1) Eastern Conference exec. They haven’t seen the Oilers play in two years, and then rarely before that.

    2) Gagner, now, is clearly better defensively than he was a few years ago, so it is a nothing observation to say that he is committed to improving his overall game.

    3) Eberle has played a lot for other eastern coaches and execs at the World Championships, where he typically has excelled both ways. Hall is suffering in Eastern eyes from the Lindy Ruff benching.

  32. theres oil in virginia says:

    flyfish1168:
    I realize it its only 4 games in and our corsi is better that previous. But I don’t believe our shots from the Kill zone or our driving to the net is any better. Watching the Oiler games I see lots of peripheral work and not enough work around the hard and rough areas

    Joensuu!

  33. Woodguy says:

    godot10:
    What wakes me up at night?

    Stan Weir…err…Ryan Nugent-Hopkins….is powerless against the six curses on the Six Rings.

    In my nightmare….

    Lowe is Voldemort.Seven horcruxes, himself, and the six rings.

    Krueger was Dumbledore.Snapes (MacT) doublecrosses Dumblecore and allies with Voldemort instead, putting Lucius Malfoy (Eakins) in charge of Hogwarts.

    My dream must be Elizabethan theatre.I figure Nugent-Hopkins is Hermione.Bucky, of course, is Peter Pettigrew.

    Kruger was Gilderoy Lockhart

  34. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide:
    Tobias Rieder with 2 goals in his first game with Portland of the AHL. Hah!

    Henry:
    Lowetide,

    How is Kessey doing so far, Steve?

    Kessy has 0 points, EV +/- in 2 games and 5pims.

    I still maintain MacT doesn’t make that trade if he’s hired a month earlier. It reeks of Tambo.

    Interesting Oiler fringe note: Portland Pirates signed Brule to a PTO. Hope he finds his game alongside Rieder.

  35. godot10 says:

    Woodguy: Gifting players spots on the roster and in the line up instead of making them earn it has been part of the systematic rot on Kingsway.

    This is a breath of fresh air.

    I call BS.

    Gifting Six Rings buddies’ spots in management and coaching without making them earn it or be held accountable for it is “alive-and-kicking”. Fresh air NOT!

    One rule for management. Another rule for the players.

    How are Katz/Lowe/MacT any different than Snyder/Clarke/Holmgren?

  36. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Woodguy,

    Now, I’m not sure, but the core of this team sure looks like it had it handed to them.

    When was Eberle ever in trouble of losing a top six spot? The guy backchecks like a beer leaguer.

    Hall has been benched by two different coaches (three if you count Ruff) for irresponsible play,, but never seems to have to worry about losing his spot on the top line.

    Nugent-Hopkins doesn’t even need to warm up before the coach is throwing him out for half the game.

    Why is it good that only one of the three #1′s is held to this standard?

  37. Lowetide says:

    thebiggestmanintheworld:
    Now, I’m not sure, but the core of this team sure looks like it had it handed to them.
    When was Eberle ever in trouble of losing a top six spot? The guy backchecks like a beer leaguer.
    Hall has been benched by two different coaches (three if you count Ruff) for irresponsible play,, but never seems to have to worry about losing his spot on the top line.

    For Christ’s sake people. TAYLOR HALL IS A GREAT PLAYER NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is getting completely fucking crazy.

  38. G Money says:

    flyfish1168:
    I realize it its only 4 games in and our corsi is better that previous. But I don’t believe our shots from the Kill zone or our driving to the net is any better. Watching the Oiler games I see lots of peripheral work and not enough work around the hard and rough areas

    This is a very valid point, but I would put some context around it:

    - Not one observer of the Oilers would say the team is playing well so far.

    - YET, (small sample aside), so far through the 4 games the team has markedly improved in Corsi (near 6% improvement) and actual shot differential (+4) over last years pace. This is a huge improvement.

    - You are absolutely right about the offensive game. Not enough going to the tough areas yet. Occasional flashes from Hall, Hemsky, Perron, and RNH, but so far little continuity.

    - Defensively, the team is actually better at recovering the puck than last year. Giveaways on zone exits are killing us.

    So if I were to put this in context, the season so far is: much improved possession game, inconsistent attack, giveaways on defense, and shoddy goaltending.

    I do believe that the last three *will* get better, and we *will* start to see some pretty exciting games.

    I am no Polyanna on this – I have consistently said I don’t believe this is a playoff team yet. But it is a much better team than what we’ve seen so far.

    I suspect that only in Edmonton could a four-game stretch like this result in calls to trade Yak and Smid. Sigh.

  39. godot10 says:

    Lowetide: For Christ’s sake people. TAYLOR HALL IS A GREAT PLAYER NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is getting completely fucking crazy.

    The moronic decision of MacT and Eakins to put Taylor Hall in a position where he would almost surely fail has shifted the focus in the masses from Hall’s strengths, to Hall’s weaknesses.

    One should always play elite players to their strengths, and not to their weaknesses. You don’t expose Achille’s ankle for all to see.

  40. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Lowetide,

    Where did I say he wasn’t?

    You need to relax. If anything, I was trying to put Yakupov in with the big three.

    Yak seems to be held accountable for his poor play.

    Do you think Hall is/was held to the same standard?

    What has J Schultz done to really deserve 25+ minutes a night?

    I want Eberle, Hopkins, Hall AND Yakupov to be pushed, not restrained.

    Seems like Yak is held to a different standard, and I don’t think its wise to put that on a 19 year old Russian sniper, just like you don’t to 22 year old river pushing kid from Kingston….

  41. sliderule says:

    The team is playing decent not great but decent.We have been winning the corsi and close on the shot count on most night.That was not the case last year.
    Unfortunately the oilers fate hangs on Dubnyk.He doesn’t have good agility but he is huge.If he can stay on his feet a little more and improve his angles maybe the puck will start hitting him again.

  42. Lowetide says:

    thebiggestmanintheworld:
    Lowetide,

    Where did I say he wasn’t?

    You need to relax. If anything, I was trying to put Yakupov in with the big three.

    Yak seems to be held accountable for his poor play.

    Do you think Hall is/was held to the same standard?

    What has J Schultz done to really deserve 25+ minutes a night?

    I want Eberle, Hopkins, Hall AND Yakupov to be pushed, not restrained.

    Seems like Yak is held to a different standard, and I don’t think its wise to put that on a 19 year old Russian sniper, just like you don’t to 22 year old river pushing kid from Kingston….

    You said “Hall never has to worry about losing his spot on the top line.” Seriously? As for Yakupov, I think you’d agree that he’s struggling. Do you recall a time–aside from his first 8 or 9 games–in which Hall was struggling a lot, especially offensively?

  43. CDK says:

    My hat goes off to the Canadians for their superb checking. I have never seen a team do such a great job of keeping the Oilers out of the slot and constantly pushing them to the boards in the Canadians zone.

    Question: Was this good work by the Canadians or poor work by the Oilers to push into the dangerous scoring positions? What can the Oilers do better today get the puck into the slot?

  44. Henry says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Kessy has 0 points, EV +/- in 2 games and 5pims.

    I still maintain MacT doesn’t make that trade if he’s hired a month earlier. It reeks of Tambo.

    Interesting Oiler fringe note: Portland Pirates signed Brule to a PTO. Hope he finds his game alongside Rieder.

    I agree. Rieder is a MacT kind of player.

  45. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Godot…. I think your ideas are as crazy as Pozzo’s.

    Hall hasn’t been damaged in any way by playing out of position for 2 games. This is nonsense and infantilizes Hall.

    And the idea that Hall is getting the gears from the peanut gallery now because of those 2 games is as absurd as it is ahistorical. The same voices have been ‘Old Manning’ Hall forever. They applauded when Ruff benched Hall, they applauded when Cherry got upset with Yak. They applauded every Hemsky injury.

    These voices aren’t new, they aren’t going anywhere and anyone who gives them much credence beyond the minimal amount to register contempt shouldn’t be paid attention to.

  46. mustang says:

    Lowetide: For Christ’s sake people. TAYLOR HALL IS A GREAT PLAYER NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is getting completely fucking crazy.

    If people can’t see that #4 is a beast on the ice, then they have no idea what they are watching. Does he make mistakes? Yes he does, I’ll take Taylor Hall on my team any day

  47. hunter1909 says:

    Yakupov = Russian

    Yakupov = Russian hockey players coming to Edmonton.

    MacLowe = Proven nothing except blowing for the past decade, often being total jerks

    If/when Yakupov gets traded and Hemsky stays, that’s probably close enough to the Nichols trade for this bored fan.

  48. Gret99zky says:

    When is this team going to improve vs. the opposition rather than the previous version of themselves?

  49. hunter1909 says:

    Ironic noticing Lars Eller as a cool player(want him for the Oilers), then he slams Taylor Hall into the boards later in the game lol.

  50. hunter1909 says:

    Gret99zky:
    When is this team going to improve vs. the opposition rather than the previous version of themselves?

    You kind of half want them to have a ‘coach for 20 games’ carousel, starting with Eakins, then Kreuger, and finally Pat Quinn – the coach with the best record gets to finish the season and the playoffs – whatever they are.

  51. Hammers says:

    thebiggestmanintheworld:
    Lowetide,

    Where did I say he wasn’t?

    You need to relax. If anything, I was trying to put Yakupov in with the big three.

    Yak seems to be held accountable for his poor play.

    Do you think Hall is/was held to the same standard?

    What has J Schultz done to really deserve 25+ minutes a night?

    I want Eberle, Hopkins, Hall AND Yakupov to be pushed, not restrained.

    Seems like Yak is held to a different standard, and I don’t think its wise to put that on a 19 year old Russian sniper, just like you don’t to 22 year old river pushing kid from Kingston….

    Lt first off also a parent of the 60′s and love your insight. Not saying I always agree but probably 80% of the time . As for your list of “D” I think the only switch I make is Belov to #4 and Smid #5 .Your reflections on the leafs do bring back memories but I was a Detroit fan in those days and flipped to the Flyers when expansion came so if you know your Edmonton history you understand . As for any Eastern writer they will never get over the center of the universe and care less about the west they anyone imagines. Alberta & B.C. fans have a different appreciation of not just the teams but sometimes I think the game . They hated Edmonton when Pocklington said that Sather would bring Stanley home in 5 years then basically did it . As for this team today I trust McT & Eakins and expect to be fighting for a playoff spot . There are guarantees in sport .I give them untill the quarter pole to get the ship going onwards and upwards .

  52. G Money says:

    CDK: Question: Was this good work by the Canadians or poor work by the Oilers to push into the dangerous scoring positions? What can the Oilers do better today get the puck into the slot?

    It’s a good question. To be honest, I’m not that worried about it. There’s too much talent up front for them not to figure it out and get back to regular nights of Hall, Ebs, Nuge, Hemsky, Perron, and Yak lighting it up.

    I’m more concerned about the giveaways, turnovers, and stupid zone exits.

    Just count how many times per game the Oilers have clear possession in the D zone and then: pass it unpressured directly to the other team; try a long dangerous low probability cross-ice pass, often picked off for a dangerous chance the other way; skate two steps and pass it to a fully covered player who of course then immediately turns the puck over; try and move the puck up along the boards to or through the neutral zone and turn it over; or skate slowly out into the neutral zone looking for an outlet and get the puck taken away by a backchecker from the other team. It’s like 20 times per game, and is driving me nuts.

    Not only does it f*** up your defensive game, but it makes your offensive game a whole lot more difficult when you have to make six attempts to get through the neutral zone before you get to the other side.

    If I were to have the audacity to give Eakins coaching advice, I would say this:

    - Leave your lines intact for a while. Not only is it a new system, but six of your twelve forwards are new to the team for gawds sake. Give them a chance to find some familiarity before you start MacBlending them to find an effective pair or line.

    - Practise the goddamn zone exits. If it’s going to work, when you have possession in the D zone, the player with the puck has to know what to do (skate or pass), and the other players have to be in positions to give that player those options.

  53. FastOil says:

    Lowetide: For Christ’s sake people. TAYLOR HALL IS A GREAT PLAYER NOW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This is getting completely fucking crazy.

    I see what you did there LT. You’re saying they need to trade Hall because he has the most potential return. Nice.

  54. Lowetide says:

    FastOil: I see what you did there LT. You’re saying they need to trade Hall because he has the most potential return. Nice.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3DuAF4KOnQM

  55. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Gret99zky,

    Thanks for that. When you’re continually at or near the bottom of the league maybe the expectations need to be higher?
    20 to 30 games to start performing? They’ll be too far back by then. Am I hearing right that most posters around here are OK with that? It’s been 7 freaking years people!
    This supposed Eastern GM has it right in general, he just has the names wrong due to birth place bias. Justin Shultz can not currently be classified as a defenseman. This team is mostly terrible without the puck and has not been tenacious enough to get it back. Translation: No commitment to a 200 ft game.

  56. Lowetide says:

    It’s been 4 games. I understand there’s a lot of stress over the Oilers, but honestly we’re just pounding each others brains in over nothing.

  57. justDOit says:

    So many narratives in tonight’s game: east v west, belligerent rebuild v youth rebuild, bad corsi v good corsi, undefeated v…

    Well, let’s just say that when this game gets ugly, I’ll be looking back at Moranis and Candy in those ridiculous uniforms, and I’ll still be chuckling. Thanks for that pic, LT!

    Ooh – forgot Eakins v his old employers. Sheesh.

  58. flyfish1168 says:

    G Money,

    By my observation this year we drive from the out side from the blue line in on lots of our rushes up the ice. Opponents dman is getting there way with Hall and Hemsky by driving them way to wide to get an effective shot. I like the idea of working towards or from the middle of the ice, from the neural zone. Breakout from the neural zone and this way we have less pass picked off from long passes across the ice pass. Another area is cycling the puck down low we need more movement from our players, including our d-man so we can work towards freeing someone in the Kill zone. example Yak. Losing Joensuu doesn’t help.

    If anything we just need more quality chances not just more shots towards the net. I count maybe 5 per game and that isn’t enough quality chances

  59. RMGS says:

    “60s parents were kind of communisits–speak when spoken to, it’s bedtime because I said so–that kind of thing”

    I’d say that’s much more fascist than communist (unless you mean Communist). :)

    This NHL executive (probably Brian Burke) can go to hell, indeed. The NHL with its parrochial culture hates the Oilers. When waves of Hall, The Nuge, YakCity, Eberle, Hemsky, Perron, Gagner, Schultz, etc. storm the league, I look forward to that hate growing.

  60. flyfish1168 says:

    Lowetide,

    Our team is holding their sticks a little to tight. They have put this pressure on themselves because they want it badly. Especially Hall and Yak

  61. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Lowetide: You said “Hall never has to worry about losing his spot on the top line.” Seriously? As for Yakupov, I think you’d agree that he’s struggling. Do you recall a time–aside from his first 8 or 9 games–in which Hall was struggling a lot, especially offensively?

    There have been plenty of times I thought Hall should have a sit down or spend some time plugging away on a third or fourth line.

    Looks like getting the ice time he did helped him.

    Maybe that would work for Yak?

    Maybe some better linemates? For 60 minutes?

    All I’m saying is treat Yak how you treated Hall. Same type of player….

  62. thebiggestmanintheworld says:

    Lowetide:
    It’s been 4 games. I understand there’s a lot of stress over the Oilers, but honestly we’re just pounding each others brains in over nothing.

    I’ll second that motion….

  63. Colonel Obvious says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Godot…. I think your ideas are as crazy as Pozzo’s.

    Hall hasn’t been damaged in any way by playing out of position for 2 games. This is nonsense and infantilizes Hall.

    And the idea that Hall is getting the gears from the peanut gallery now because of those 2 games is as absurd as it is ahistorical. The same voices have been ‘Old Manning’ Hall forever. They applauded when Ruff benched Hall, they applauded when Cherry got upset with Yak. They applauded every Hemsky injury.

    These voices aren’t new, they aren’t going anywhere and anyone who gives them much credence beyond the minimal amount to register contempt shouldn’t be paid attention to.

    I agree with every word. Godot’s fanaticism on this issue is truly bizarre. To see someone be some monomaniacally wrong was good theatre for a while but now I find myself waiting for it to end.

  64. Lowetide says:

    thebiggestmanintheworld: There have been plenty of times I thought Hall should have a sit down or spend some time plugging away on a third or fourth line.

    Looks like getting the ice time he did helped him.

    Maybe that would work for Yak?

    Maybe some better linemates? For 60 minutes?

    All I’m saying is treat Yak how you treated Hall. Same type of player….

    When Hall arrived, there was no one. Now, the team has options. Yakupov is getting his minutes and contributing (Corsi F % is solid). The team is losing and the goals aren’t going in, hell if that goalpost puck found twine instead we wouldn’t be talking about it.

  65. Lowetide says:

    EdmontonOilers 8m
    Coach Eakins says @jouneri6 likely to return to action tonight vs. Toronto. “We missed him terribly. He plays a hard, hard game.”

  66. Lowetide says:

    Joanne Ireland ‏@jirelandEJ 3m
    #oilers told Will Acton to find a place in Edmonton.

  67. Colonel Obvious says:

    Lowetide:
    Joanne Ireland ‏@jirelandEJ 3m
    #oilers told Will Acton to find a place in Edmonton.

    This makes me sad.

  68. Lowetide says:

    Colonel Obvious: This makes me sad.

    Well, it’s bad news for Lander, maybe bad news for Arco too.

  69. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Lowetide,

    They need 1 of him on each line if he continues where he left off.

  70. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    justDOit: Well, let’s just say that when this game gets ugly, I’ll be looking back at Moranis and Candy in those ridiculous uniforms, and I’ll still be chuckling. Thanks for that pic, LT!

    If it gets really, really bad… just watch this video several times over:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZaHfWqmC18A

    at the 1:30 mark Candy basically wins the comedy cup hands down.

  71. Colonel Obvious says:

    Lowetide: Well, it’s bad news for Lander, maybe bad news for Arco too.

    I think it is bad news for Arcobello. And since Acton doesn’t do a single thing better than Arcobello, it is also bad news for us. If Stephen Gionta can play center on the fourth line for the Devils as they go to the finals well then Arcobello can play center on a fourth line too.

  72. Lowetide says:

    Ha! Chilliwack.

  73. sliderule says:

    Damn I hope Keith and Will were not brought to Edmonton as a tandem.

  74. theres oil in virginia says:

    Lowetide:
    Joanne Ireland ‏@jirelandEJ 3m
    #oilers told Will Acton to find a place in Edmonton.

    He’s played quite well in limited minutes. Winning faceoffs, banging bodies, killing penalties. A helluva lot better than I expected. Arco too. I think at the very least Acton has earned a spot in the pressbox if the team ever gets center depth.

  75. Lowetide says:

    I think Acton gets the job for the PK ability and the faceoffs. That’s a guess.

  76. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    flyfish1168:
    Lowetide,

    Our team is holding their sticks a little to tight. They have put this pressure on themselves because they want it badly. Especially Hall and Yak

    And, they’re using the wrong sticks!!

  77. justDOit says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I remember that one, and it’s even better today. I love how they really went for the original arrangement, regardless of musical experience in that three-piece combo. You’re right, Candy wins it, but it’s oh so close between the three.

    But I have no recollection of that Bay Leaves sketch.

  78. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide:
    Ha! Chilliwack.

    Prefer Moranis and Co.’s version and not just because it is much, much funnier.

    ———
    This Acton business is bad beans. We’ll have to re-evaluate the Lander/Arco situation in like 2 months… maybe they both kill it in OKC (the past says that’s very likely) and force the issue.

    It’s clear though that Eakins likes the smell of Acton:

    Edmonton Oilers ✔ @EdmontonOilers
    “He lives his life on ‘how am I going to get better today?’ We’re very proud of him.” @dallaseakins on #Oilers centre Will Acton

  79. FastOil says:

    Lowetide,

    Hilarious

  80. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Gilderoy Lockhart

    I’m talking about TOI decisions, not anything else.

    I think you’re just bitter that I nailed the Krueger = Gilderoy Lockhart thing.

  81. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Godot…. I think your ideas are as crazy as Pozzo’s.

    Hall hasn’t been damaged in any way by playing out of position for 2 games. This is nonsense and infantilizes Hall.

    And the idea that Hall is getting the gears from the peanut gallery now because of those 2 games is as absurd as it is ahistorical. The same voices have been ‘Old Manning’ Hall forever. They applauded when Ruff benched Hall, they applauded when Cherry got upset with Yak. They applauded every Hemsky injury.

    These voices aren’t new, they aren’t going anywhere and anyone who gives them much credence beyond the minimal amount to register contempt shouldn’t be paid attention to.

    *slow clap accompanied with Irish Whisky, not that Wisers crap*

  82. nycoil says:

    That first Edmonton Journal article says we are 1-4. When did that happen?

    Soon tHis team will score and score a lot. And the angst will go away. A whopping two game win streak will have us at .500 and if we are at .500 missing Gagner and with Dubnyk having been poor I like our chances in the meat of the season.

    You want panic about a new coach and system, see exhibit A right here in NYC: the New York Rangers

  83. OilClog says:

    Acton thing really isn’t that big of deal.. especially at the moment. It’s a 4th line C position.. he isn’t failing at it. We’re not losing games because of him.. Belan.. Trian.. NO I WONT EVER RELIVE THAT!

    After 5 minutes of scrolling through the comments here, I’ve come to realize I’m not.. riding this crazy train alone..

    Getting right wing on this team sorted out is pretty simple..

    Hemsky is our current best NHL Right Winger, he has earned the #1 spot.

    RNH – Hall – Hemsky

    Yakupov, I can’t bash a just turned 20 year old for defensive mistakes. His mind is in a completely different realm.. Stick, Puck, Score. He has to play with guys that have eyes in the back of their heads..

    Ebs – Perron – Yak

    Wait Ebs in the middle?!?..it would look a whole lot smoother then Hall.. Rather have Ebs quick hands and mind, out off the boards.. He’s being crushed. He’s stated his willingness to play the middle, he can do it. Perron is nasty, this guy is a quick quick favorite we need 10 more David Perron’s.

    Gordon Smyth Arco

    Smyth would still be the anchor, it’s a sad day. I hope it ends soon.

    Acton Gaz EAGER!..

    Since, crazy is the spice around here. I’m sick and freaking tired of seeing Brown out there when I know damn bloody well Eager would of nailed that guy.. are other players more intimidated by the thoughts of Brown on the bench? Or Eager going crazy? The speed, size, power, and check finishing ability Eager brings is worth more for the bang then the fantastically grown upper lip. A small change, but a change from within that would give that needed spark. Eager’s sideburns must be down to his knees.

  84. Woodguy says:

    CDK,

    Question: Was this good work by the Canadians or poor work by the Oilers to push into the dangerous scoring positions? What can the Oilers do better today get the puck into the slot?

    Some from column A, some from column B.

    Too many times the puck was in a shooting position at the point, but there was an umbrella of Oiler forwards around the net, but none disrupting the sight lines of the goalie or making a Dman come cover them.

    Huge problem on this team.

    Joensuu addresses that, but he can’t be the only one.

    I see Perron and Gordon go to the net without the puck ok as well.

    Interesting that they are all new to the team.

    Almost like they have been taught to do that, but the incumbents have not, or simply will not.

  85. OilClog says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Godot…. I think your ideas are as crazy as Pozzo’s.

    Hall hasn’t been damaged in any way by playing out of position for 2 games. This is nonsense and infantilizes Hall.

    And the idea that Hall is getting the gears from the peanut gallery now because of those 2 games is as absurd as it is ahistorical. The same voices have been ‘Old Manning’ Hall forever. They applauded when Ruff benched Hall, they applauded when Cherry got upset with Yak. They applauded every Hemsky injury.

    These voices aren’t new, they aren’t going anywhere and anyone who gives them much credence beyond the minimal amount to register contempt shouldn’t be paid attention to.

    Do you give Sermons?

    Preach!

  86. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Kessy has 0 points, EV +/- in 2 games and 5pims.

    I still maintain MacT doesn’t make that trade if he’s hired a month earlier. It reeks of Tambo.

    Interesting Oiler fringe note: Portland Pirates signed Brule to a PTO. Hope he finds his game alongside Rieder.

    There was some talk about Rieder not singing given the winger depth on the Oilers and them trading him to salvage some value.

    Not sure if it was true.

    Maloney picked Jackassalini’s pocket on that one.

  87. bassguy says:

    Hi folks, in regards to Taylor Hall and any of our other superlative forward players…Im not sure if you heard Tyler Dellow remarking on the “turnover” stat..he thinks its very misleading because of the simple fact, you actually have to have the puck to turn it over and, he mentioned that the biggest “turnover” culprits would probably be the top 10 players in the league..or something to that effect

  88. CDK says:

    G Money,

    Thanks for the well thought out reply.

    It does seem that the giveaways have been hurting the team.

    I also think that the forwards are all trying to work to hard every time they touch the puck. I don’t mean to say that hard work is a bad thing. Hockey is a physical sport but it’s also a fast moving game of chess. You score goals by getting the players lined up where you want them the same way you line up the pieces on a chess board for a checkmate.

    I think the forwards need to relax, stop trying to bash their way through the opposition and find creative solutions to solve the oppositions defensive systems.

    R.N.H. was doing a good play last game where he would get right up to the defenseman, bounce the puck off the boards around him and pick it up on the other side.

  89. magisterrex says:

    I really, really, really want the Oil to go on a winning streak so that I don’t have to see the Oilersnation commentary bleed into LT’s site.

    Really.

  90. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide: Pozzo

    Sound, mature reasoning with clarity.

    What the hell is that doing in a thread about the Oilers?

  91. Woodguy says:

    bassguy:
    Hi folks, in regards to Taylor Hall and any of our other superlative forward players…Im not sure if you heard Tyler Dellow remarking on the “turnover” stat..he thinks its very misleading because of the simple fact, you actually have to have the puck to turn it over and, he mentioned that the biggest “turnover” culprits would probably be the top 10 players in the league..or something to that effect

    Hi Basguy,

    Yes, many of us are familiar with that.

    Here’s last year turnover leaders:

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?fetchKey=20132ALLSASALL&sort=giveaways&viewName=rtssPlayerStats

    Here’s the top 15 for those who don’t want to click the link:

    Dion Phaneuf
    Dustin Byfuglien
    Andrei Markov
    Travis Hamonic
    Jeff Petry
    Phil Kessel
    John Tavares
    Dan Boyle
    Victor Hedman
    P.K. Subban
    Joe Thornton
    John Carlson
    Ilya Kovalchuk
    Rob Scuderi
    Ray Whitney

    They all can play on my team.

  92. regwald says:

    LT, did you forget the Oilers picke up Muni from the Leafs as well ( FA? I think).

  93. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy: There was some talk about Rieder not singing given the winger depth on the Oilers and them trading him to salvage some value.

    Not sure if it was true.

    Maloney picked Jackassalini’s pocket on that one.

    I vaguely recall that. If that is the case, good for Tambo to get something out of the deal… It still looks like the kind of deal Tambo makes without an external factors mitigating the issue.

    The guy that looks at playoff faceoff % is the same guy that would look at Kessy’s short playoff sample size, his PIMs and vitals and start salivating.

  94. Lowetide says:

    regwald:
    LT, did you forget the Oilers picke up Muni from the Leafs as well ( FA? I think).

    Nah, I just wanted to grab a couple of examples. The Leafs throwing away defenseman has been a consistent thing since childhood, it remains an astonishing part of their history.

  95. G Money says:

    OilClog: Acton thing really isn’t that big of deal.. especially at the moment. It’s a 4th line C position.. he isn’t failing at it.

    Acton had the worst (a single-digit) Corsi against the Habs. SINGLE DIGIT! He and his line were basically outshot 10:1. Every other forward other than Gordon and Yak were positive Corsi in that game.

    A lot of it came on a couple of horrible shifts where they never left the zone, but still, mygawd.

    What I hope they plan for is that with Joensuu returning, put Smyth back on the fourth line. He’s still an NHL player, albeit a slow tired one. When Gagner returns, put Arco back there and move Acton to the wing, for his PK and faceoff ability. I can live with a fourth line of Acton-Arco-Smyth.

  96. wheatnoil says:

    magisterrex:
    I really, really, really want the Oil to go on a winning streak so that I don’t have to see the Oilersnation commentary bleed into LT’s site.

    Really.

    In fairness, if the Oilers go on a winning streak there will be a bunch of posts that say the Oilers are the greatest NHL team in 50 years and the same people who are now saying “guys, we’re not that bad, our corsi is 50%” will be saying “guys, we’re not that good, our corsi is only 50%”.

    What we’re seeing is a disconnect. When MacT took over as GM he said that this team wasn’t as good as their 5 game winning streak that put them in a playoff position but also wasn’t as bad as their subsequent 5 game losing streak (though I would argue that maybe they were as bad as that 5 game losing streak). There’s a group of people here pointing at corsi and saying “we’re better than last year” but that’s different from saying “we’re dominating the league”. 50% corsi is not the end point, it’s a marker of respectability. It’s a marker of being middle of the pack. It means we’re playing as an “average” team. It’s just a sign that perhaps the long dark night is ending and dawn is on the horizon, regardless of the 1-3 record. It’s a sign that there is hope, nothing more.

    It’s a fool who patiently waits through the long, dark night, only to give it all away just minutes from dawn. The sun is rising folks and corsi is the harbinger. Morning will be crisp and chilly and our bones will be sore from the rough night, but with it comes promise. We’re not there yet, but it’s coming. Don’t bail now.

  97. G Money says:

    Woodguy: I nailed the Krueger = Gilderoy Lockhart thing.

    Yes. Yes you did.

  98. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    bassguy:
    Hi folks, in regards to Taylor Hall and any of our other superlative forward players…Im not sure if you heard Tyler Dellow remarking on the “turnover” stat..he thinks its very misleading because of the simple fact, you actually have to have the puck to turn it over and, he mentioned that the biggest “turnover” culprits would probably be the top 10 players in the league..or something to that effect

    It’s a really good point.

    It also goes hand in hand with the idea that hits and blocks are deceiving. On the surface they are unremarkably good things, right?

    But, what they actually indicate is that the player throwing the hit or blocking the shot is playing without the puck, i.e., not a good thing.

    (mind you at 4×5 blocks are a different matter and at any time a hit can be an effective way to retrieve a lost puck… but often that is not the case)

  99. G Money says:

    wheatnoil: the same people who are now saying “guys, we’re not that bad, our corsi is 50%” will be saying “guys, we’re not that good, our corsi is only 50%”.

    Yes. Yes I will. :-)

    And the rest of your post was also excellent.

  100. Racki says:

    I know I’m in the vast, VAST minority, but I think Will Acton is fine as 4th line center. I think while the 4th line shouldn’t have seen ice time in the 3rd, they have been a line that seems to create a little havoc and generate a little life out of a dead crowd. Yah, the Corsi hasn’t been good. I’ll pay more attention to them this game, but I still didn’t really see the danger level (against) when they were on the ice though.

    Admittedly, I also don’t really understand the infatuation with Lander. To me, he still is not an NHL player. I’d like to see that 4th line get drop one of Brown or Gazdic each night and pick up a better player that can generate more chances for… maybe even just someone as simple as Tyler Pitlick. But it’s not a line that I’m thinking “oh crap, this isn’t going to end well”, except I did wonder why Eakins would have them out when we’re down in the 3rd.. I mean, I get the idea… trying to bring the bench to life… but I would have gone with NJ game’s formula. Mind you, they got one shift in that too, very early on.

    These guys haven’t been on the ice for any ES goals against yet.. Acton’s been on for a couple PP goals against. He and Gordon are working together on some shifts to win draws, or placed individually on others’ lines to win draws. This team is FINALLY winning draws.. he’s been part of that, so I’m happy. Maybe you could try out a Lander from time to time to see how it goes though.

    Also, I realize Acton staying makes it hard to see Arco staying when everyone is healthy. That bit is a little disappointing, although he seems to have as good of hands as Belanger. Hit the net, little man, and you’ll be of value.

    Anywho, THANK GOD JOENSUU IS BACK! I think we can all agree about that..

  101. Woodguy says:

    Colonel Obvious: I think it is bad news for Arcobello.And since Acton doesn’t do a single thing better than Arcobello, it is also bad news for us.If Stephen Gionta can play center on the fourth line for the Devils as they go to the finals well then Arcobello can play center on a fourth line too.

    I’d like to see Arco get a shot at 4C before they make the decision.

    Maybe Arco should goad Kadri into a fight to keep with Acton.

  102. G Money says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: But, what they actually indicate is that the player throwing the hit or blocking the shot is playing without the puck, i.e., not a good thing.

    This has become a popular narrative (“hits are bad” or at least “hits are not that good”).

    You have to be careful with that narrative.

    Hit count does not just reflect possession, or lack thereof. Every team plays without the puck at times, so hit count also reflects a willingness to play physically without the puck.

    So the Oilers of last year truly stunk – they were usually outshot and out-Corsi’d (indicating a lack of possession) AND often outhit (indicating a lack of willingness to play physical without the puck).

    On the other hand, I’ll take most things about the Montreal game (other than the turnovers and the final result). The Oilers outshot (28 to 27), out-Corsi’d, AND badly outhit (29 to 13) the Habs. These things *will* eventually pay dividends.

  103. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    I think Acton gets the job for the PK ability and the faceoffs. That’s a guess.

    Oilers faceoff men this year:

    Player, number of faceoffs, winning percentage

    Boyd Gordon 85 62.4
    Mark Arcobello 58 56.9
    Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 42 52.4
    Will Acton 39 53.8
    Taylor Hall 34 55.9

    Arco is actually better, and I would say he also faces better competition in the circle too.

    Oilers sit 3rd in the NHL with 56.8% as a team, trailing only PIT (59.3) and MIN (60.3)

    Gordon’s a beauty.

    If he played full time with 83 and 6 I bet he’d pot 40+ points.

  104. Logan91 says:

    Is anyone else worried for the kids being around those Toronto goons tonight?

  105. Woodguy says:

    G Money: This has become a popular narrative (“hits are bad” or at least “hits are not that good”).

    You have to be careful with that narrative.

    Hit count does not just reflect possession, or lack thereof. Every team plays without the puck at times, so hit count also reflects a willingness to play physically without the puck.

    So the Oiler’s of last year truly stunk – they were usually outshot and out-Corsi’d (indicating a lack of possession) AND often outhit (indicating a lack of willingness to play physical without the puck).

    On the other hand, I’ll take most things about the Montreal game (other than the turnovers and the final result). The Oilers outshot (28 to 27), out-Corsi’d, AND badly outhit (29 to 13) the Habs. These things *will* eventually pay dividends.

    Good reading from Mike on the subject:

    http://www.boysonthebus.com/2013/03/06/the-statistical-relationship-between-hits-shots-and-points/

  106. nycoil says:

    Am I reading between the lines too much? Eakins said they told Will Acton he can find a place to stay. So he isn’t getting sent down to OKC this year. Does that mean when Gagner is back Arcobello is out? I think he has been better than Acton. It would be a shame. Or does that mean when Gagner is back it will be on the wing?
    RNH-Hall-Hemsky
    Arcobello-Perron-Eberle
    Gordon-Yakupov-Gagner
    Acton-Smyth-Joensuu (Brown, Gazdic)

    Nice depth but either Yak or Gagner would have to move to their off wing and Joensuu is batting too low in the order, while MacEakins seems to like an enforcer in the lineup,
    RNH-Hall-Hemsky
    Gagner-Perron-Eberle
    Gordon-Joensuu-Yakupov
    Acton-Smyth-Gazdic /Brown
    Arcobello stays up with the big club but ht and Acton alternate from time to time?

    Or is there a trade in the works for when Gagner is back? The 3-for-1 unicorn?

    Just don’t let it be Smid, Yak, and Klefbom for Kunitz and Engelland please….no need to be bold here,. Patience is what we need.

  107. fifthcartel says:

    RNH has looked amazing on faceoffs since returning, but 40 or so is also not the greatest sample size. Either way, that shoulder surgery had to have helped immensely.

  108. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    G Money,

    I did add a caveat though: “at any time a hit can be an effective way to retrieve a lost puck… but often that is not the case”

    To add to WG’s link… I’ve found these interesting:

    http://nhlnumbers.com/2013/3/7/why-shot-differential-is-important-item-45604

    http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=5617

    http://www.arcticicehockey.com/2013/4/29/4280038/toronto-maple-leafs-suck-nhl-playoffs

    The point seems to be that hitting doesn’t appear to lead to more shots or scoring chances. Which isn’t to say (as I noted) that a hit can’t be effective in retrieving a puck… (though teams with high #s of hits don’t correlate with teams that gain and hold possession… so we are kind of left chasing phantoms here)

    However, the big point is that the mentality of “hits = awesome” seems to treat all this extra information as noise… when it’s actually the signal and the hits are the noise.

    (as a final caveat, I’ll note none of this seems to address the “intangible” qualities hits are said to possess: i.e. wearing down an opponent, charging up yourself and team, etc).

  109. 719 says:

    I am in agreement with many on this board, and see the merits of waiting out until 30-35 game mark to see what we have. I do not want to see Smid leave town.

    I just hope MacT is also able to stay as patient. Last time his impulsive nature brought us Ryan Jones and Denis Grebeshkov for 1.5 a piece. Eating needed cap space for two players not likely to play much on the big club this year.

  110. 719 says:

    Arco has been a revelation on the dot and with the body checks. I fear the numbers game will catch up with him when both Gagner and Jonesuu are back.

  111. Lowetide says:

    I’ve watched a lot of hockey in my time, and “hits” kind of cloud the discussion. NO ONE–not the mathiest of the maths–would argue the value of a player driving to the net or standing in front of the net or winning the puck along the wall. NO ONE.

    But I think we should be able to agree that hits for hitting sake is not effective. When Keon (who is on my mind today, sorry) used to penalty kill, he’d force the defneder into making a decision with the puck and then “finish the check” and make sure whoever he’d passed it to did not have a welcome return (give and go) option.

    That’s an effective hit, but we’ve clouded this discussion over the years and now we’re counting stuff that’s no at all important. “Hits that upset the balance of the possession team by not allowing a return pass on a sortie” may have some value, but we’re too busy counting hits of any sort.

    Most of them on dummies by dummies.

  112. bassguy says:

    thanks to Woodguy and Rom for furthering an interesting conversation! I wanted to ask anyone , isnt it probable the oilers are still dealing with the mechanics of the “swarm” defense? I really did notice it in the montreal game and it exposed N.schultz(for one?) but its a healthy fodder for a bit of chaos and exciting hockey..

  113. Woodguy says:

    Why is there chatter on twitter that Yak’s sitting tonight?

    Does anyone have info or is it just speculation?

  114. BlacqueJacque says:

    Christ…

    “Chris Wescott ‏@TheChrisWescott 2h
    #Oilers coach Eakins says the team told Will Acton to “find a place to live”. Good sign for him to stay in EDM for a while”

    sigh.

  115. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy:
    Why is there chatter on twitter that Yak’s sitting tonight?

    Does anyone have info or is it just speculation?

    Speculation. Only thing I found about the Oilers lineups was CnB self-promoting. Smyth out, Joensuu in.

    http://www.coppernblue.com/2013/10/12/4831438/oilers-maple-leafs-lines-and-pairings

  116. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy:
    Why is there chatter on twitter that Yak’s sitting tonight?

    Does anyone have info or is it just speculation?

    Speculation. It could happen, though. I don’t buy into the idea that Yakupov isn’t getting ice time because he is, and I also don’t buy he hasn’t been good. Yak is 50% 5×5 close CorsiFor and 55.1% overall.

    He hasn’t scored. He looked like he didn’t know where to be on one of the goals the other night. It doesn’t mean anything.

    HOWEVER, I can see the coach giving him a rest if he feels Yakupov is getting down on himself/confused about structure.

    I’m watching Loui Erksson suck the big suck for the Bruins against Columbus today, ’tis the season for being unsure. #early

  117. G Money says:

    Woodguy: Good reading from Mike on the subject:
    http://www.boysonthebus.com/2013/03/06/the-statistical-relationship-between-hits-shots-and-points/

    Romulus Apotheosis: I did add a caveat though: “at any time a hit can be an effective way to retrieve a lost puck… but often that is not the case”

    The point seems to be that hitting doesn’t appear to lead to more shots or scoring chances.

    Lowetide: But I think we should be able to agree that hits for hitting sake is not effective.

    Just for clarity, and to tie things together and put a bow on it, let me be clear that I did not and am not asserting the Old Cherry’s Tale of “hitting is always good”.

    What Parkatti (and numerous others) have done is show that shots (and by proxy Corsi) correlate to points, and hits do not correlate to shots or to points. I do not argue that point. If you have to choose between an “outshoot” vs an “outhit” strategy, the former will win, and win big.

    What I’m trying to separate is the “hit” signal from the “hit” noise. Lowetide’s assertion that hits for hits sake, or dummy on dummy hits, are pointless is true. Those hits create the noise. My assertion is teams that *once they’ve lost possession* use hits to regain possession are going to be better than those that don’t. This is the signal. I also think it is this aspect of hockey that simple minds observe and then translate without distinction into “hits are good”.

    If anyone wants to test my assertion (and please do – I have added it to my nearly infinite “I’ll do this analysis someday” list), you would need to do one of two things:

    - You could use Parkatti’s methodology and use regression to test the correlation between hits and shots or hits and points, BUT you would prefilter the data to only test for teams and games with positive Corsi or shot differential. My assertion here is that positive Corsi teams – teams that are good at puck possession – will then show a positive correlation between hits and points.

    - Or you could use multiple regression to test both variables (hits AND Corsi) in relation to points. I assert that once you’ve isolated the influence of the dominant “shots” signal, you would find a weak but positive correlation with hits and points as well. I’m not sure this would work as well as the above test because I’m guessing that the shots signal is so dominant that the hits signal might not get isolated at all without filtering.

  118. Lowetide says:

    Oil in Virginia: Well, it’s not the Mensa Christmas card!

  119. Andropod says:

    mumbai max,

    Yes. And that…… :)

  120. G Money says:

    “Henrik Lundqvist will not start for the Rangers on Saturday after allowing 10 goals in his last two starts.”

    Man, I don’t know who stinks more, Dubynk or Lundqvist. Obviously neither has a chance of improving. Bums.

  121. Jon K says:

    I hope the Oilers win tonight. The combination of a losing record and higher expectations this year seems to be making everyone cranky. Why can’t things go back to normal, where only DSF and Hunter are cranky. ;)

    With the greatest of respect for LT and others, I do think we are still seeing growing pains as Hall and Yakupov learn to play a more complete game. There is absolutely no doubt that Hall is an offensive juggernaut that drives results in nearly every way possible. But on the other hand I’d say its equally inarguable that his defensive game needs significant work and attention still.

    I think the whole argument is a little silly though. If RNH and Gagner aren’t injured to start the season the Oilers are probably above 0.500 and we are all talking about Hall’s boxcars instead of his weaknesses.

    As a last note we should also probably remember that Hall seems to be a perennial slow starter and generally takes 10 or so games to round into form.

  122. Oiler_in_Mexico says:

    “With Jake Gardiner apparently available, I wonder if the Oilers might attempt to pick him up and pair him with Justin Schultz–that would be a lot of chaos but it worked in college.”

    I remember many things that “worked in college” that would not work so well now.

    Great post today!

  123. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: Woodguy:
    Why is there chatter on twitter that Yak’s sitting tonight?
    Does anyone have info or is it just speculation?

    About time if he is.

    Finally, Kevin Lowe and MacT show how to win the Cold War.

    When Oilers desperately need a goal, it’s always best to have turned your most gifted offensive sniper into a defensively responsible checker.

    If Oiler fans are lucky, Eakins schooling Yakupov might even turn into MacT schooling Rob Schremp 2.0

    ‘get your shine box, Yaksi’

  124. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Jon K:
    I hope the Oilers win tonight. The combination of a losing record and higher expectations this year seems to be making everyone cranky. Why can’t things go back to normal, where only DSF and Hunter are cranky.

    With the greatest of respect for LT and others, I do think we are still seeing growing pains as Hall and Yakupov learn to play a more complete game. There is absolutely no doubt that Hall is an offensive juggernaut that drives results in nearly every way possible. But on the other hand I’d say its equally inarguable that his defensive game needs significant work and attention still.

    I think the whole argument is a little silly though. If RNH and Gagner aren’t injured to start the season the Oilers are probably above 0.500 and we are all talking about Hall’s boxcars instead of his weaknesses.

    As a last note we should also probably remember that Hall seems to be a perennial slow starter and generally takes 10 or so games to round into form.

    Don’t you think the “crankiness” is a slowly dawning realization that this year’s edition of the Oilers, despite a new GM, yet another new coach, a few new support players and another year of maturation of the young player, isn’t really all that different that what we’ve seen for years?

    This, while teams like Colorado, Dallas and Columbus appear to have taken pretty big strides forward.

    If the Oilers had won 3 of 4 heading out on the road trip from hell, there would likely be some real sense they can hang in with the big boys but there’s a real chance their season will be all but over by the end of October.

    It’s seems to odd to say, but tonight’s game is pretty much a “must win” and that’s not a good place to be in 5 games into a season.

    We’re still in the Denial stage.

    Too early for Anger.

  125. hunter1909 says:

    Jon K: I hope the Oilers win tonight.

    Troll!

  126. hunter1909 says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Don’t you think the “crankiness” is a slowly dawning realization that this year’s edition of the Oilers, despite a new GM, yet another new coach, a few new support players and another year of maturation of the young player, isn’t really all that different that what we’ve seen for years?
    This, while teams like Colorado, Dallas and Columbus appear to have taken pretty big strides forward.

    That’s actually fair comment.

  127. Ryan says:

    hunter1909,

    Yes, this is not a playoff bound Oilers team. Their overall game is still very immature replete with defensive lapses and turnovers galore.

    The fact that there’s a possible goaltending situation doesn’t hide the overarching problem that this team isn’t dominating anyone. It didn’t last year and it doesn’t look like it will this season either.

    It’s a wonder that with 3 x #1 overall picks, they’re not coasting to the playoffs. :)

  128. leadfarmer says:

    What is the over/under on Eakins making it through 30 games this year. Not that we can keep blaming coaches for this teams failure but some head will have to roll and it won’t be Lowe’s

  129. Lowetide says:

    No roster I’ve seen yet, but Joensuu is apparently in so that’s good news. My preference would be:

    Nuge-Hall-Eberle
    Gordon-Perron-Hemsky
    Arco-Joensuu-Yakupov
    Acton-Gazdic-Smyth

    Smid-Petry
    Ference-J Schultz
    N Schutlz-Belov

  130. Lowetide says:

    leadfarmer:
    What is the over/under on Eakins making it through 30 games this year.Not that we can keep blaming coaches for this teams failure but some head will have to roll and it won’t be Lowe’s

    He won’t be fired. This team can’t keep firing coaches.

  131. iwin76 says:

    I’d like to see this:

    93-4-64
    Arco-57-14
    27-6-83
    whatever

    Seems odd to have Hemsky on 3rd line, but he’s shown an even greater committment to the backcheck and he’s somewhat of a solo artist on offence. If 6 could keep up that’s a nice 2 way line. Arco and Perron/Eberle have worked well together, and Yak deserves some time with people who get him the puck in the right time and place.

  132. Bos8 says:

    It’s mind boggling

    Four games, really, four games. Talk about excess verbiage. A little patience please. Some of the players are still introducing themselves.

  133. Lowetide says:

    Here’s something insane. The Edmonton Oilers have TWO rookies on the roster:

    Mark Arcobello 4, 0-2-2 +1
    Luke Gazdic 4, 1-0-1 +1

    Not rookies? Anton Belov, Will Acton. Crazy.

  134. Lowetide says:

    Ryan Hamilton should also be listed as a rookie. The NHL is whack. WHACK!

  135. VanOil says:

    A natural Yak Trick in the first with a crest kiss just before they through it up stairs to Plums.

    A RNH magic show in the second with more dishes than Ikea.

    A third period with very sharp elbows to keep the Leafs turning red.

  136. godot10 says:

    Taylor Hall meet Toby Peter…uh….er…Will Acton.

  137. Lowetide says:

    Arcobello is tied for 9th in rookie scoring.

  138. Bos8 says:

    Eakins is introducing structure and responsibility to the team. It’s a process. He or any other coach would do the same. It’s the time for tough love.

  139. godot10 says:

    Arco played a lot of RW in OKC for Nelson for the the half-season and the first full season. Brown’s ice time might be impacted more than Acton’s when Gagner is healthy.

  140. godot10 says:

    Bos8:
    Eakins is introducing structure and responsibility to the team.It’s a process.He or any other coach would do the same.It’s the time for tough love.

    Or the Oilers are back to a coach who is forcing the players to fit into his system (my way or the highway), rather than designing a system to fit his players. People may differ on whether this is a good thing or a bad thing.

  141. Lowetide says:

    godot10: Or the Oilers are back to a coach who is forcing the players to fit into his system (my way or the highway), rather thandesigning a system to fit his players.People may differ on whether this is a good thing or a bad thing.

    Yes by all means lets go back to the system that worked. Which one was that again?

  142. prairieschooner says:

    It is almost 6 hours since Godot10 post about what keeps him up at night.
    His post has not been touched by the touched one Romulus the chemist
    I would have thought it to have manna from heaven?
    Is there a hockey game on today?

  143. Ryan says:

    Lowetide,

    Well, I’d suggest either Mact gets behind the bench or we call up Jacque Lemaire and see if he’ll come out of retirement.

    These kids really need to learn the old adage, ‘it’s not what you take, it’s what you leave behind.’

    I was on board with LT about Mact being a very smart man… then I see our 4rth line and I now have doubts.

  144. theres oil in virginia says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: This, while teams like Colorado, Dallas and Columbus appear to have taken pretty big strides forward.

    Last year:
    Colorado started out 2-2 and finished 16-25-7.
    Dallas started out 2-1-1 and finished 22-22-4.
    Columbus started 1-2-1 and finished 24-17-7.

    See the obvious correlation there? No? Me either. It’s 4 fucking games.

  145. Lowetide says:

    Ryan:
    Lowetide,

    Well, I’d suggest either Mact gets behind the bench or we call up Jacque Lemaire and see if he’ll come out of retirement.

    These kids really need to learn the old adage, ‘it’s not what you take, it’s what you leave behind.’

    I was on board with LT about Mact being a very smart man… then I see our 4rth line and I now have doubts.

    I’m impatient as the next guy, but 4 games! I don’t like parts of the 4line (Mike Brown) but do like Gazdic so far. I’m okay with Acton, he’s been fine on the PK and in the FO circle so far. I think people are mad at the 4line today because of the item about Acton getting a place in Edmonton, but that doesn’t mean Arcobello will be flushed for certain.

    It really doesn’t. LANDER on the other hand got bad news today.

  146. jp says:

    SK Oiler Fan:
    Lowetide,

    They need 1 of him on each line if he continues where he left off.

    28 min TOI for him tonight?

    SK Oiler Fan:
    Gret99zky,

    Thanks for that. When you’re continually at or near the bottom of the league maybe the expectations need to be higher?
    20 to 30 games to start performing? They’ll be too far back by then. Am I hearing right that most posters around here are OK with that? It’s been 7 freaking years people!

    The issue here I believe is that the shots and corsi suggest that the team has played well enough to be 2-2 on the year. Right now, not in 20 or 30 games. For sure there are some kinks that need to be worked out – the mistakes the team is making are very obvious and also correctable. And Dubnyk has played far below his established level so far. Continuing to play exactly like they have should lead to an approximately .500 team, not a .250 team. And if they can correct the issues they’ve had so far and get to playing the system well after 20-30 games, there’s a good chance this is a >.500 team. 7 years has nothing to do with it. This team has been better than 1-3 so far, and can (likely will) improve in the areas where they’ve been bad going forward.

  147. godot10 says:

    “They give birth astride of a grave, the light gleams an instant, then it’s night once more.”

    You know what they say about broken clocks.

  148. godot10 says:

    Lowetide:
    It really doesn’t. LANDER on the other hand got bad news today.

    Not really. Playing 5 minutes between Gadzic and Brown is not much better than playing between Eager or Hordichuk and Petrell. A mid-twenties non-prospect filling that roll is better than ruining a prospect completely.

  149. jp says:

    Lowetide:
    No roster I’ve seen yet, but Joensuu is apparently in so that’s good news. My preference would be:

    Nuge-Hall-Eberle
    Gordon-Perron-Hemsky
    Arco-Joensuu-Yakupov
    Acton-Gazdic-Smyth

    Smid-Petry
    Ference-J Schultz
    N Schutlz-Belov

    Those lines are about ideal at the moment. I’d probably keep Belov-Petry together for a little more though.

    Agreed also that Acton has been OK, and that him sticking around doesn’t necessarily mean Arcobello is gone. There are lots of ways for Arcobello to stay in the lineup, including RW as mentioned. If he keeps playing well he’ll stick around. For sure this isn’t good for Lander, but I think Brown is getting in a bit of a tight spot now too. He doesn’t bring a heck of a lot, and I’ve liked Gazdic more.

  150. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909: About time if he is.

    Finally, Kevin Lowe and MacT show how to win the Cold War.

    When Oilers desperately need a goal, it’s always best to have turned your most gifted offensive sniper into a defensively responsible checker.

    If Oiler fans are lucky, Eakins schooling Yakupov might even turn into MacT schooling Rob Schremp 2.0

    ‘get your shine box, Yaksi’

    I truly missed your rollercoaster of emotions when you weren’t posting much.

    The Oilers (and various staff/players) go from Outhouse to Penthouse and back in the span of a game.

    Love it!

  151. Woodguy says:

    Dead Cat Bounce,

    Don’t you think the “crankiness” is a slowly dawning realization that this year’s edition of the Oilers, despite a new GM, yet another new coach, a few new support players and another year of maturation of the young player, isn’t really all that different that what we’ve seen for years?

    What’s making me cranky is people thinking they can come to a realization in 4 games.

    If that’s true then:

    -Lundqvist is an awful AHL goalie, let alone NHL
    - Partrick Sharp shouldn’t be in the NHL
    - Gigeure and Scrivens will battle for the Vezina
    - Hertl will win the Hart
    -The Flames will end the season with 131pts.

    So…….yeah.

  152. Woodguy says:

    leadfarmer:
    What is the over/under on Eakins making it through 30 games this year.Not that we can keep blaming coaches for this teams failure but some head will have to roll and it won’t be Lowe’s

    No.

    The GM is finally and adult and everything.

    Eakins doesn’t even sniff the door unless they miss this year AND next year.

  153. Lowetide says:

    Looking at that Vancovuer game, the Corsi for % 5×5 close was very very bad. Eakins is going to have a challenge tonight if the Oilers don’t come out blazing.

  154. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    theres oil in virginia: Last year:
    Colorado started out 2-2 and finished 16-25-7.
    Dallas started out 2-1-1 and finished 22-22-4.
    Columbus started 1-2-1 and finished 24-17-7.

    See the obvious correlation there?No?Me either.It’s 4 fucking games.

    Take a look at the next 10 games, 8 of which are on the road, and let me know how many you think the Oilers will win.

  155. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Woodguy:
    Dead Cat Bounce,

    Don’t you think the “crankiness” is a slowly dawning realization that this year’s edition of the Oilers, despite a new GM, yet another new coach, a few new support players and another year of maturation of the young player, isn’t really all that different that what we’ve seen for years?

    What’s making me cranky is people thinking they can come to a realization in 4 games.

    If that’s true then:

    -Lundqvist is an awful AHL goalie, let alone NHL
    - Partrick Sharp shouldn’t be in the NHL
    - Gigeure and Scrivens will battle for the Vezina
    - Hertl will win the Hart
    -The Flames will end the season with 131pts.

    So…….yeah.

    Like I said…still in denial.

  156. theres oil in virginia says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Take a look at the next 10 games, 8 of which are on the road, and let me know how many you think the Oilers will win.

    All of them of course! Hehe.

  157. BlacqueJacque says:

    Dead Cat Bounce,

    I know I don’t like your contributions to this forum, but I have to thank you for one thing.

    I finally realized one of my great wishes – to understand what it must have been like to have Esa chirping on the ice in Tikkanese all the time.

  158. Ice Sage says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: Like I said…still in denial.

    Sorry to hear that, DCB! Those fancy stats are so inconvenient this year

  159. BlacqueJacque says:

    Man I wish I could watch this game with Woodguy. Or at least be a fly on the wall. Old-school Brian Burke/Randy Carlyle/Don Cherry team that advanced stats hate, vs new-school Oilers team that advanced stats are beginning to like.

    Unfortunately, I already know the answer to the argument. “One result is not statistically significant”.

  160. Lowetide says:

    Do we have lineups yet?

  161. James says:

    Lowetide: Yes by all means lets go back to the system that worked. Which one was that again?

    “You, Gretzky–score a goal”

  162. stevezie says:

    godot10,

    I’m sure Dallas Eakins is very sorry for killing your dog. Remember, to forgive is divine.

  163. SK Oiler Fan says:

    jp,

    A.500 team is not a very good team using Betman math. Then it would be 8 years. The issue I believe is they’ve played well in about 4 of 12 periods (I admit I didn’t see much of the habs game). 6 of those periods were awful and they’ve started every game poorly. Yes it’s early, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to have expected better.

  164. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    Ice Sage: Sorry to hear that, DCB!Those fancy stats are so inconvenient this year

    Inconvenient is not the word I would use to describe them.

    4-1-0 with 3 regulation wins and +7 goal differential is likely to be described as “inconvenient” around here.

    I wonder how Al Gore feels now that the earth is cooling?

  165. flyfish1168 says:

    Maybe the fourth line will consist of acton, arco and a rotation of smyth brown and gadza.

  166. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy,

    Understanding the Oilers seems to work best at whatever part of the psychiatric community calls ‘unconscious’… I don’t remember the rest.

    Especially when you can drag Lowe and Mact, ‘Steve Smith’ ‘Bucky’ and now Eakins into range as easily as a lazy work crew drinks coffee.

    Eakins you don’t want to have listed, but Yakupov is for my money worth more than any player on the team. He’s like Kharlamov, not Ethan Moreau.

  167. BlacqueJacque says:

    Dead Cat Bounce,

    It’s not actually cooling. Whether you read that in the Daily Mail, the Telegraph, or the Sun, you’re reading it from a right-wing rag that deliberately ignores the accounted for and expected pendulum effect. The overall trend is upward, but there will be swings to noticeably cooler and hotter years.

  168. hunter1909 says:

    Dead Cat Bounce: I wonder how Al Gore feels now that the earth is cooling?

    Rich.

    And not president.

    Still getting dissed by his stepfamily.

  169. BlacqueJacque says:

    http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterferrara/2012/05/31/sorry-global-warming-alarmists-the-earth-is-cooling/

    Or maybe you read that bullshit. See, the International Climate Change Conference is actually a gathering of sponsored climate change skeptics, and it’s a conference organized by the Heartland Institute, a right-wing think tank whose past notable achievements include defending the tobacco industry.

  170. hunter1909 says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    I’m sure you’re serious about whatever side of the debate you stand on.

    Any ideas about tonight’s game?

  171. Lowetide says:

    Oilers have an extra F and D on the ice for warmups someone is going to get scratched here and that’s going to be interesting!

  172. hunter1909 says:

    Oilers are really going to need to learn how to stand up for themselves.

    Gagner gets his jaw broken, then Hall gets whacked just for fun, etc.

    The book on the Oilers seems to be: ‘They’re small, weak on the puck when forechecked smartly(see Montreal), collectively squeezing their sticks under pressure from Dallas Eakins. Star players can be dealt with impunity, as game needs must.’

    PS: ‘Dubnyk can’t adjust to his new pads. He’s a sieve. Against the Montreal Canadiens he moved in goal like he was drunk.’

    PPS: ‘Eakins breaking up last year’s successful young guns combinations, tossing plugs like Acton into the top lines, leaving Yaks out to dry.’

  173. BlacqueJacque says:

    hunter1909,

    My bad, good call.

    Umm, I think a loss will be really bad for the team. They seem to be nervous under pressure. There’s a fragility to the squad, a lack of faith in itself. Hall and Yak become solo artists. Only Nuge is oblivious to it. I guess Smyth is too, but Smyth seems to be oblivious to the damage time has wrought on his body, too.

    I think it’s a good thing Ference is captain.

  174. hunter1909 says:

    PPS: ‘Eakins breaking up last year’s successful young guns combinations, tossing plugs like Acton into the top lines, leaving Yaks out to dry.’

    Hilariously Lowe/MacT won’t/can’t even see this as problem. Same frigging crap they’d do(and fail at) themselves, lol.

  175. Lowetide says:

    Leaf lines

    JvR-Bozak-Kessel
    Broll-Kadri-Lupul
    Raymond-Bolland-Leivo
    Ashton-McClement-Orr

  176. VanOil says:

    Elliot with his elbows up on Heatly

  177. Lowetide says:

    Gunnarsson-Phaneuf
    Rielly-Franson
    Ranger-Gardiner

    Jonathan Bernier starts in goal.

  178. hunter1909 says:

    BlacqueJacque: I think it’s a good thing Ference is captain.

    Why? Because Taylor Hall, the fans overwhelming choice being snubbed helps the 1-3 team somehow?

    The only thing I’ve noticed about Ference so far is nothing. Some schmuck threatened to have his butchy sis beat me up, why I can’t remember lol it was right here on this blog though.

  179. hunter1909 says:

    LOL just for the record I don’t hate the Leafs at all, aside from them being a terrible at hockey team.

  180. Woodguy says:

    Eakins feature by Freidman up next on CBC pre-game.

  181. Lowetide says:

    Glenn Healy says Messier will be doing things like meeting with “Danny DeKeyser” types, and that’s not bad if true. I think that’s a guy who has some sway even at his age.

  182. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909:
    Oilers are really going to need to learn how to stand up for themselves.

    Gagner gets his jaw broken, then Hall gets whacked just for fun, etc.

    The book on the Oilers seems to be: ‘They’re small, weak on the puck when forechecked smartly(see Montreal), collectively squeezing their sticks under pressure from Dallas Eakins. Star players can be dealt with impunity, as game needs must.’

    PS: ‘Dubnyk can’t adjust to his new pads. He’s a sieve. Against the Montreal Canadiens he moved in goal like he was drunk.’

    PPS: ‘Eakins breaking up last year’s successful young guns combinations, tossing plugs like Acton into the top lines, leaving Yaks out to dry.’

    Its really not different from what happens to every team.

    Hockey is a rough sport with some real douchbags and unfortunate plays.

  183. jp says:

    SK Oiler Fan:
    jp,

    A.500 team is not a very good team using Betman math. Then it would be 8 years. The issue I believe is they’ve played well in about 4 of 12 periods (I admit I didn’t see much of the habs game). 6 of those periods were awful and they’ve started every game poorly. Yes it’s early, but I don’t think it’s unreasonable to have expected better.

    For sure. Just trying to say that even with their faults the team has played better than their 1-3 record so far. Continuing to play exactly the same should give better results, plus they are likely to actually improve their play going forward. So optimism.

  184. BlacqueJacque says:

    hunter1909,

    I don’t think Hall has the maturity to be captain yet.

  185. Racki says:

    CBC confirms Yakupov scratched for Joensuu

  186. Lowetide says:

    Eakins scratches Yakupov. I think that’s going to be difficult to defend if the Oilers don’t win tonight, but it’s certainly going to get everyone’s attention. It’ll be interesting to see how Yakupov reacts.

  187. Dead Cat Bounce says:

    What do you call a football team that can’t score a touchdown?

  188. jp says:

    Lowetide:
    Oilers have an extra F and D on the ice for warmups someone is going to get scratched here and that’s going to be interesting!

    Interesting to see who they go with for sure.

    I’d like to see:
    Hall-RNH-Eberle
    Perron-Gordon-Hemsky
    Joensuu-Arcobello-Yakupov
    Gazdic-Acton-Smyth

    Ference-JSchultz
    Belov-Petry
    Smid-Larsen

    Dubnyk

  189. fifthcartel says:

    I don’t like it.

  190. steveb12344 says:

    Dead Cat Bounce,

    British?

  191. Racki says:

    I think there are some other guys who could have been scratched, however Yakupov is definitely one that could be scratched, so I have no problems with this. He hasn’t really seemed to be able to get going in any fashion just yet.

  192. BlacqueJacque says:

    Lowetide:
    Eakins scratches Yakupov. I think that’s going to be difficult to defend if the Oilers don’t win tonight, but it’s certainly going to get everyone’s attention. It’ll be interesting to see how Yakupov reacts.

    I think we kind of blow things out of proportion, waiting for a reaction. He’s pretty much a rookie who got scratched.

  193. Lowetide says:

    So, lineups SHOULD be

    Nuge-Hall-Eberle
    Arco-Perron-Hemsky
    Gordon-Joensuu-Smyth
    Acton-Gazdic-Brown

    Smid-Petry
    Ference- J Schultz
    N Schultz- Belov

  194. Masamax says:

    Lowetide,

    I think it’s already indefensible.

  195. VanOil says:

    Sitting Yakupov for one game I can forgive, if they win.

    Trading him would send me past the Hunter1909 bipolar stage of Oiler fandom right into a DSF spiral hate of filled obsession.

  196. Racki says:

    Sounds like Hall-Nuge-Hemsky to start the game

  197. Lowetide says:

    Bottom line: if it works, Eakins is golden. If it doesn’t? There’s quite a bit of evidence available to suggest Yakupov was not the problem (Corsi) and the coach himself mentioned the shot that hit the post.

    I do think he felt there was some pressure and frustration and decided to sit Yakupov as a re-set. Still, a “bold” move for sure.

  198. wheatnoil says:

    I can’t support scratching Yakupov. Just can’t.

    It’s not the end of the world and it’s not the worst way to help teach the kid something by watching the game from above, but I still can’t support this move.

    I suppose one thing to keep in mind: Eakins has been attributed with helping make Kadri an NHL player (by Kadri himself no less). Teaching young skilled players is an area where he has had some success. I hope he knows what he’s doing.

  199. Lowetide says:

    Well, they’re not boring!

Newer Comments »

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

© Copyright - Lowetide.ca