OILERS AT PENGUINS G7, 13-14

As bad as it was, they still won the chance battle (Dennis King 17-13) and the Corsi 5×5 close (25-24). Looking for down arrows? A full quiver awaits.

Azorcan3

THE POSITIVES

  • Eakins: Post-game media avail was very good. He felt things were fine until that sequence in the second period where Laddy brought the puck back into the zone (he didn’t mention Smid by name) and things went haywire for a couple of minutes. He made mention about the lack of chances against up to that point, and did not lay blame on the Nuge for an “unfortunate pass” (his words) that resulted in a turnover and the first goal.
  • Jeff Petry: I think he’s emerging as a quality NHL defenseman, and if Smid can get back to health (or stop listening to the dog whistles) that will help a great deal.
  • Boyd Gordon: Really like him. Not just the goals but the intelligent play.
  • David Perron: Man, I know he was uneven but great skill and try and he’s a prick to opponents. Love this guy.

THE NEGATIVES

  • Eakins: I thought he played the 4line way too much in the third period. This Oiler team is so dangerous, but I guess he felt there’s a game tomorrow night and he wanted his horses for that one.
  • Ladislav Smid: He had a tough night by eye and number. He might be hurt, but that’s a guess.
  • Penalty kill: Blech. Sorry if I’m being too technical.

I’m not going to blame the goalie and I’m not going to blame the top line–they had a nice start but the wheels fell off and the engine blew. It happens. Onward to Pittsburgh and the Department of the Monongahela.

bs22

Dallas Eakins healthy scratching of Nail Yakupov doesn’t look good this morning. I’m reminded of Whitey Herzog, who used to get into all kinds of trouble by double switching in crazy ways. I remember at least a couple of times he’d move his closer (right hander, Todd Worrell) to RF and then bring in a lefty to pitch to a LH bat. Then he’d double switch again to get Worrell back on the mound.

When it works, it looks good. When it doesn’t, it looks like a crazy person has taken the wheel. I don’t think Dallas Eakins is crazy, but he’s looking a little stubborn today. HSing Nail Yakupov has been a big story–and maybe that’s the plan, take away from the falling won-loss record–but now you’re left with either bringing him back tonight against Pittsburgh or letting a #1 overall pick who led your team in scoring last year rot on the vine.

Dallas Eakins has a long term contract and job security.  Why is he using his goodwill in such a curious manner? Don’t know. I’m not the coach, and he must have his reasons (one of which is getting people to be aware of the game outside of the fun moments). As an attention getter, it seems to have worked and I’d bet Nail gets in before the end of the road trip. If he struggles, Eakins has to pull him out of the lineup again–I don’t think he can turn back now. Buying in is the only possible solution to this issue.

The season is not lost–far from it–and he’s going to need that electric talent somewhere along the way. One hopes that Smyth or Joensuu can spend the night on the 4line and Yakupov can draw in with Gordon and Perron (as a guess). If not tonight, then you’d have to wonder about Thursday as being an option. After that, I wouldn’t even guess what the plan is for Yakupov.

bs23

Ladislav Smid had a tough night, I wonder if he’s hurt. Certainly his trad D partner has played well (Petry) but Laddy is going the wrong way. This is a good soldier, a guy who has grown up and gone through the tough years. He and Devan Dubnyk are having a bit of a tough time, hope things turn around for them soon.

bs24

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

10 this morning, tsn 1260. It will be HEAVY on Oiler talk and not pleasant.

  • Tyler Dellow from mc79 hockey. Dubnyk’s season (so far) and when it will turn around, Oilers on the road, Saturday Splatterday in Toronto.
  • Rob Vollman from ESPN and Hockey Prospectus. We’ll talk Taylor Hall and the Vollman Sledgehammer is back!
  • Patricia Teter from Artful Puck. Patricia saw the team on the road this weekend, we’ll find out how the prospects looked.
  • Travis Yost from Hockeybuzz. Ottawa Senators are starting slowly. Why?
  • Corey Graham, pbp man for the Edmonton Oil Kings on TSN 1260. Oil Kings may be turning a corner.

10-1260 via text, @Lowetide on twitter. Hold on!

tracy lane

Fussy britches was right on Messier and the entire July 1, 2011 free agent day, so I’m curious about this one. Glenn Anderson? Grant Fuhr? I’d love it to be Lee Fogolin but something happened back there and we’ll never know what it is, I guess. I always thought Mark Lamb would end up here, but mid-season? Andy Moog? If it was Charlie Huddy I’d go mad with happiness.

Britches also says the Blues are willing to donate Brian Elliot (the Bay City Rollers of NHL goalies) for Tyler Pitlick, but you’d think if MacT wanted Elliot and that was the price it would be in the paper under transaction. Smid to Philly was also mentioned by Tracy.

ANGER MANAGEMENT

I feel like one of the ‘friends of Marsellus Wallace’ this morning. I’m in my 50′s now, you’d think getting mad at a hockey game would be something to leave behind along the way. I’m a fan, I can turn the channel or walk out of the arena any time I want to, and yet I’m sitting here like an idiot waiting for a trade.

Godspeed Craig MacTavish and Dallas Eakins too. I know you’re smart men, but this is one helluva mess we’re looking at this morning. And the hockey Gods? They’re sending you to Sidney Crosby as a special ‘kick in the nuts’ bonus.

I hope they got some sleep, and sincerely hope they do the right thing.

Whatever the hell that is.

UPDATE: LINES (4:45p)

  • Arcobello-Hall-Eberle
  • RNH-Perron-Yakupov
  • Gordon-Smyth-Hemsky
  • Acton-Jones-Brown

Knock em dead, Yakupov.

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415 Responses to "OILERS AT PENGUINS G7, 13-14"

« Older Comments
  1. stevezie says:

    wuthering,

    Smith has been a huge Oilers fan ever since reading the Gretzky biography. Says it changed his life. I think he was even watching Barons games during the lockout. He might post on here for all we know.

  2. jp says:

    gcw_rocks:
    That would be the Ales Hemsky that has been on the ice “for more goals against (15) and even strength goals against (12) than any other player in the NHL”?

    Source: Cult of Hockey

    Hmmm. Hemsky also has the 6th worst on ice SV% in the NHL currently. I’m not sure if there’s a correlation between that and GA or not. RNH has the worst on ice SV% in the league, and Hall is also in the “top” 10. They’re also the 3 worst Oilers in +/-. Like I said, I dunno if there’s a correlation, but if those guys are making 6M per I’d re-sign Hemsky for 4-5M.

    rickithebear:
    Woodguy:
    Acton one of the 35 worst pk forwrds at the start of the season.
    Turned his back to the play on that Goal.
    turned his Back!

    Being worse than average on the Pk is not as good as Not Pking.(arcobello)

    SS tackled this in a different way. What I was thinking is that of the the 164 NHL forwards who have averaged 1 minute per game on the PK so far this season, 66 of them have yet to have a goal scored against them. Maybe those 66 guys are infinitely good on the PK while Will Acton is a pile of crap. Or maybe 5-12 minutes of PK TOI really isn’t enough to make any kind of conclusions about Actin or the other guys.

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    I can’t wait until 20 years from now when whatever deal with the devil the Leaves made comes back to bite them… seriously, what the fuck is this?:

    http://www.nhl.com/gamecenter/en/boxscore?id=2013020082

    I believe it’s called “bearing down on your scoring chances”. It’s a skill, not a fluke.

  3. wuthering says:

    stevezie,

    Yeah, I’ve seen him speak about his obsession. I just thought it was funny to see Oil colors on NBC. That doesn’t happen very often.

  4. "Steve" Smith says:

    stevezie:
    wuthering,
    He might post on here for all we know.

    Oh, I don’t know; that doesn’t seem very likely.

  5. stevezie says:

    “Steve” Smith,

    You da bomb in Catch and Release, yo.

  6. Lois Lowe says:

    He’s more of a Devils fan AFAIK. He and I could bro down about how unsung Chris Tererri was; or how much of a blunder dealing Bill Guerin to the Oilers was.

  7. bassguy says:

    Hi guys, ok, the goose metaphor didn’t really take hold.(or it did but it was’nt the way I pictured?).. and perhaps it is my own lack of explanation?…it is becoming winter, those birds are flying south..they are,for the most part flying in the right direction because thats what they are used to doing./…in a natural way ,given the shots for and against, the attempts for and against, the oilers are heading in the right direction.I really believe “Nature” will balance this out in some way!….thats not what they are used to) .on a whole other subject .given the shots and , possibly i would say the amount of time(tops in the league) and hard opposition that guys like RNH, Hall etc,have had to deal with, in such extreme minus,( bad goal tending?…etc)and just being on the ice for extended periods of itme , they have respected the time here, mike

  8. art vandelay says:

    Outchanced the Pens on the 2nd night of a btb. Come on, Art. Meet us at the space station at least!

    Do any of you guys watch football. Not the pretend kind here. The real kind on Sundays. Ever notice that some QBs, when you look at their stats for a given game, have gaudy completion and yardage numbers. Yet they’re on the losing end of a 40-24 game?
    Now, most sensible fans will say the losing team got taken to the woodshed.
    But decades of losing in Edmonton have conditioned fans – in their desperation – to create or invest themselves in phony-baloney stats that help them believe that the OIlers aren’t the pile of sh1t that fans in the other 29 cities know the Oilers to be.
    Stop pretending those stats mean anything because they don’t.
    Scoreboard leads to Ws and Ls.
    And, as usual, Ls are greater than Ws right here in River City.

  9. art vandelay says:

    You know what would be a better idea for tracking the OIlers? Put an RFID chip in their jerseys and track every time a FW skates within a 10-foot radius of the opposing net.
    You can call it Art’s Radii.
    Then pull out a blank sheet of paper, puts Art’s Radii: Oilers at the top, scan it in as a PDF, and post it after every Oiler loss.
    Because while you guys are counting zone starts, Corsi’s Sledgehammer, and Dennis King’s Organ Emporium, the rest of us see a crop of FWs that for long stretches of games won’t go anywhere near the paint.
    Opposing teams keep the Oilers pinned to the walls, where nearly zero goals are scored these days.
    I don’t care whether Hemsky’s 5×5 Cystic Fibrosis against the toughs is over 50% this year. Because whatever that “advanced” stat means, I saw a guy who toe-dragged in the neutral zone and put his linemates offside. I hope somebody PVRd that bit so that on Hemsky Appreciation Night they can put that on the Katz-0-Tron to illustrate the dipsy-doodling futility that is/was Hemsky’s entire career. And sums up the play of this under-sized, over-rated team.

  10. stevezie says:

    Low Art.

  11. theres oil in virginia says:

    art vandelay: I saw a guy who toe-dragged in the neutral zone and put his linemates offside

    I don’t know if this is better or worse, but FWIW, he put himself offside with a badly timed pass, he did not put his linemates offside with the toe drag.

  12. russ99 says:

    art vandelay,

    But the Oiler changed that halfway through the first, not during the first intermission as Labarbera said, and the Oilers forwards carried the puck in the majority of the time and created open ice to shoot from. Other than the pluggers and Smyth, they tried create open chances or find a player who could when entering the zone, and dumped where there was no option to do so.

    Yes, when they do dump, they get hemmed in, and take Corsi-friendly but goal-unfriendly shots under pressure from outside the “radius”. But last night was a break from a robotic adherence to the non-radius dump/cycle system, and if they stick with this new zone entry, those shots will come.

    I also saw a similar adjustment on defense. Seems the players are finally finding a comfort zone within the systems but where they can make the best play. A little too much of 2 players in the same space at times, but definitely a big improvement over the Devils game.

  13. cabbiesmacker says:

    I went to bed last night a little depressed, strewing over losing that $ 1.5M contract yesterday.

    I awoke this morning refreshed and ready to jump back into the fray, content in the knowledge that mine had been the best presentation.

    Oh sure, I may get my ass canned at ballpark 8:00 am but I’ve got my defense all prepared for the boss. “dude, it not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game, and damnit I looked good playing it.”

    I’m sure he’ll agree. Hell I might even get a raise as the result.

  14. theres oil in virginia says:

    cabbiesmacker: Oh sure, I may get my ass canned at ballpark 8:00 am but I’ve got my defense all prepared for the boss. “dude, it not whether you win or lose, it’s how you play the game, and damnit I looked good playing it.”
    I’m sure he’ll agree. Hell I might even get a raise as the result.

    That may be true, if “how you looked doing it” is a possible indicator for future performance in getting the next contract.

  15. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    jp: Romulus Apotheosis:
    I can’t wait until 20 years from now when whatever deal with the devil the Leaves made comes back to bite them… seriously, what the fuck is this?:
    http://www.nhl.com/gamecenter/en/boxscore?id=2013020082
    I believe it’s called “bearing down on your scoring chances”. It’s a skill, not a fluke.

    You’re probably right. It’s pretty reasonable for a team to have 6 players shooting above 20% (some well above; and Kadri at 18.2%; and a league best 4×5 save %

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201314&sit=4v5&sort=SVPCT&sortdir=DESC

    what was I thinking!?

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