FINDING THE RIGHT SHADE OF BLUE

As this season slowly fades (my GOD it’s slowly fading) into the record books, those of us who still care begin to look forward to a new tomorrow. The talk turns, as it always seems to, toward the defensive side of the ice and building up the middle. I still have the ‘balance’ photo in my arsenal, one day, one sweet day, we’ll see it.

THE MAN EHRHOFF

ehrhoff player cardHe looks very consistent from here, the Corsi for % is down but the team is too, and his REL shows he’s delivering. I like the idea of acquiring Ehrhoff, but I’m not sure Oiler fans would enjoy him. He is not an overly physical fellow, but can help with possession at even-strength. He may or may not be available, but the Oilers are probably knocking on new GM Tim Murray’s door every day.

MARK GIORDANO PLAYER CARDGiordano player card

This is a nice player. Remember, the Flames are no screaming hell and look at the linescore on his season. Very good offense, Corsi for % 5×5 excellent and of course he’s quality compared to his own group. I wonder if the Oilers can convince Burke that having two of the top three picks is more valuable than having Giordano?

NIKITA NIKITIN PLAYER CARD

nikitin player cardThis is a Scott Howson acquisition for Columbus who has emerged as a very useful NHL defenseman for the Jackets. He’s a free agent this summer, and I’m sure that CBJ will try to retain him, but the Oilers have some nice things to offer and should be backing up the money truck if he reaches free agency.

JAKE GARDINER PLAYING CARD

jake gardiner player cardGardiner is known to the Oilers coach and hasn’t been able to get any traction with Carlyle. Gardiner is a key to the massive Oiler-Leaf trade this summer (Reimer, Gardiner, Kulemin and Kadri for Glenn Anderson, Grant Fuhr and Craig Berube).

ALEX EDLER PLAYING CARD

edler playing cardThat’s a really nice level of consistency for Edler, and despite a struggling season I like this player. In the last two seasons he’s been moved around by the coach in terms of pairings, and it keeps coming up roses. I like Edler, always have

 OLLI MAATA PLAYING CARD

maata

I’m including him because  there seems to be some idea he might shake loose. Young, young, young, but he’s played (well) in the NHL and could be an outstanding NHL player for years.

I’m thinking Christian Ehrhoff and Michalek out of Phoenix. Something like that. Add those two and have Ference-Petry followed by Marincin-J Schultz (that was a good OKC pairing). Give Nurse another year of junior, don’t draft Ekblad (I think his dominance comes from being a man before his age group) and let the other kids boil in OKC until there’s a need or one of them pushes Marincn/Ference out of the way.

NO MORE PATIENCE

johansen10

The problem goes back to expectations. The Oilers were supposed to be pushing for the playoffs this year, and instead find themselves in the dungeon for the 40th time in 40 years. In the modern era, the Oilers are approaching some impressive totals for ‘most years of suck’ and at this point need to be headed in a better direction.

That means veterans. Experience. Ben Scrivens added to Jonas Hiller. Ehrhoff and Michalek added to the current blue. Winnik and Hanzal (as if) added to the top 9F’s, that sort of thing.

The key for Craig MacTavish is to have the right scouts looking at the right things. That’s where the Matt Hendricks worry comes in. The Oilers have talked about him batting higher in the lineup than he should based on his ability. Strictly 4th line, but he was playing 3rd line on the weekend. I know the Oilers want heavier men at the top of the lineup, but they also need to be skilled or it’ll be a case of JF Jacques all over again. Take a pass, make a pass. Can they do it?

cashman

The Oilers should be looking for a Wayne Cashman-Ryan Smyth type player. A guy who can play it rough, can win board battles but can also take and make a pass tape to tape on the fly. MacT always talks abot players who don’t have the play die on their stick, that kind of guy. Imagine a 28-year old Billy Guerin on the Nuge-Hall line. James Neal is that kind of player, and of course they come available once every 5 years so drafting one is probably the better plan.

OHL PROSPECTS: MICHAEL DAL COLLE

  • Dal Colle has been on a roll all season long. With or without Scott Laughton, Dal Colle has been able to use his big body to create offense in Oshawa. His skating is noticeably improved over last year and it’s made him quicker to the net and to loose pucks, which has resulted in his line generally dominating time of possession. I’m not sure I see him being a true power forward in the NHL, more like a Bobby Ryan, but he still holds a ton of value and (like Bennett) should be a definite top 10 selection in 2014.
  • Scored a beautiful goal on a great shot. Had another shot on a pretty much identical play, hit the post. Was able to show his terrific release and pro scoring potential. Was also able to show that his skating has improved in the last year. Might not have been as consistent of a scoring chance producer as a few other guys in the game, but he still showed strongly. (this was from the Top Prospects game review)

I think the Oilers draft a future power forward in 2014 with their top pick, and Dal Colle has the look of being a good one.

scarlett-johansson-hitchcock

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy show today, 10 this morning on TSN 1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Tyler Dellow, mc79 hockey. We’ll discuss Hall’s year and reasonable expectations for the rest of this season.
  • Travis Yost, Hockeybuzz. The Senators have solved a lot of problems, can they make the postseason?
  • Rob Vollman, ESPN and Bleacher Report. Trade deadline, Olympics and Hall.
  • Jeff Hauser, Radio Hauser. We’ll talk about the incredible NFL weekend.

10-1260 on text, twitter @Lowetide_ and we’ll have some fun today. Stay tuned!

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94 Responses to "FINDING THE RIGHT SHADE OF BLUE"

  1. Woodguy says:

    I’m not sure any of the D you listed are on the list complied by the Keystone Kops on Kingsway.

    Both MacT and Lowe have said publicly that they are thrilled with Ference and want to add another like him.

    That means and older, more defensive type player.

    Ference is getting his head kicked in corsi-wise right now because he can’t handle 1st pairing comp, especially with current partner JShultz,

    If the Oilers add another older player who can’t handle 1st pairing comp then next year will be same as the last 8.

    I think its make or break for the team this summer.

    I’m pretty sure its make or break for my fandom.

    If they add nothing of real value in terms of Actual NHL Players who can handle Actual 1st pairing comp and I’m going to saddle up next to Art Vandelay for drive by snears and invest my available fandom in smarter management.

  2. sliderule says:

    Ehrhoff would be a number one d on our team.The question is what would Sabres want.They won’t take Gagner.
    Nikitin is a UFA and is the right size to help fight the cycle .He would be perfect costs you nothing but Katz money.
    Gardiner is duplicated by Schultz Jr and Petry so no.We have too many small defencemen.
    If Reinhart is gone you have to take Ekblad.He has an Nhl ready body ,good hockey sense and I don’t see the heavy feet.I would love to get a look at prospect game tests.
    Dal Colle has the Offense but in the prospect game he didn’t check anyone.Thats just one game but it’s an indication.Do the oil want another non checking winger.

  3. eastcoastoil says:

    I thought I heard a little noise out of Montreal about PK Subban

    Yak can get paired back up with his junior buddy. Send them J Shultz or the first too to get them really interested.

    I don’t know how many of the guys you named are CFP and i am not saying PK is but he is the right age and looks mean when I have seen him. I also know this deal does not get done until the off season.

    What do you think?

  4. Lowetide says:

    East Coast: Subban is the Ace or King in the deck. Having him as an Oilers changes the equation immediately. It’s one of the questions I have for Dellow this morning (offer sheet or trade).

  5. Pouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    East Coast: Subban is the Ace or King in the deck. Having him as an Oilers changes the equation immediately. It’s one of the questions I have for Dellow this morning (offer sheet or trade).

    Just make it happen. God news we could use a bit of that attitude too.

  6. Melman says:

    Woodguy:
    I’m not sure any of the D you listed are on the list complied by the Keystone Kops on Kingsway.

    Both MacT and Lowe have said publicly that they are thrilled with Ference and want to add another like him.

    That means and older, more defensive type player.

    Ference is getting his head kicked in corsi-wise right now because he can’t handle 1st pairing comp, especially with current partner JShultz,

    If the Oilers add another older player who can’t handle 1st pairing comp then next year will be same as the last 8.

    I think its make or break for the team this summer.

    I’m pretty sure its make or break for my fandom.

    If they add nothing of real value in terms of Actual NHL Players who can handle Actual 1st pairing comp and I’m going to saddle up next to Art Vandelay for drive by snears and invest my available fandom in smarter management.

    You and me both. 40 years of fandom is on serious life support and the patient may be dead

  7. spoiler says:

    There is no way on Gord’s green earth the Oil are drafting a winger with their 1st pick in 2014. Not a chance.

    Neither Giordano or Edler are available. Erhoff is too old. Gardiner is what we already have. Maatta still needs help out there and is only a half step ahead of what we have in the minors.ave

    I only have two other words this morning (and if you are under 18 please plug your ears):

    FUCKING KAEPERNICK.

    That is all.

  8. Caramel Obvious says:

    I think Subban is the best defenseman in the league. The only other players like him are Doughty and maybe Keith. They tilt the ice all by themselves. The difference is that when Subban is doing it, it really looks like he is doing it all by himself. He’s an amazing, amazing, player.

    This brings up another point. We talk a lot about quality of competition but to my mind that matters far less than quality of teammates. The reason is simple. The variance of teammates is far greater than it is for competition. That’s the nut that needs to be cracked in order to assess shot metrics. How do you adjust for teammates?

    N.B. Zone starts also matter a great deal. However, because there is a ilnear relationship between zone starts and shots it is easy to adjust for (the coefficient is about .15).

  9. spoiler says:

    There is no way on Gord’s green earth the Oil are drafting a power winger (a la Guerin) with their 1st pick in 2014. Not a chance.

    Neither Giordano or Edler are available. Erhoff is too old. Gardiner is what we already have. Maatta still needs help out there and is only a half step ahead of what we have in the minors.

    I only have two other words this morning (and if you are under 18 please plug your ears):

    FUCKING KAEPERNICK.

    That is all.

  10. gcw_rocks says:

    Melman,

    Try the Avs. They have some issues on defence, and how they deal with Reilly and Stastny will say a lot about the team, but they are interesting to watch and have one of the most entertaining coaches in hockey.

  11. Caramel Obvious says:

    If Woodguy is right and they need/want to improve right away the only choice is to move the first round pick. Trading Gagner won’t get it done and trading Eberle is robbing Peter to pay Paul.

    That focuses the discussion. What is leaving Edmonton is the first round pick. Anything else and we lose the trade from the beginning. What would be a good return?

    Possibilities:

    1) Ehrhoff

    It’s looking like the pick is going to be in the top three range. Ehrhoff alone doesn’t see enough. What would you have to add to Ehrhoff to make you do the deal?

    2) Byfuglien

    Only signed for two more years after this. You can’t trade a top three pick for two years of a player. You just can’t. But Byfuglien is exactly what the Oilers need. Is he so far out of favour that you could get him for Gagner + Klefbom. That would be a dream scenario.

    3) Subban

    I wish. There is no scenario in which I can see this happening. Easily worth a top three pick though.

  12. gcw_rocks says:

    spoiler,

    Ehrhoff is not too old. He won’t survive the contract, but if I am MacT I acquire him anyway. GMs have a 5-6 year shelf life, and Ehrhoff will probably be good for the four years. The tail end of the contract is the next guy’s problem.

  13. verdad says:

    At this point, the most constructive action MacTavish could make is to release Gagner outright.
    The player has negative value going forward.
    If one player coudl be singled out as representative of the failure of the Kevin Lowe rebuild it is Gagner – never wins a puck battle, never plays defense, can’t win face-offs, and the master of fatuous statistics.
    Of the three great erros of MacTavish to date ( hiring Eakins , not acquiring Schneider and re-signing Gagner), if is having the millstone of Gagner that crucifies this team so fundamentally.
    It isn’t so much whether the Oilers might get any value for Gagner , what matters is just flushing him asap.

  14. Clay says:

    Woodguy:
    I think its make or break for the team this summer.

    I’m pretty sure its make or break for my fandom.

    If they add nothing of real value in terms of Actual NHL Players who can handle Actual 1st pairing comp and I’m going to saddle up next to Art Vandelay for drive by snears and invest my available fandom in smarter management.

    Melman: You and me both.40 years of fandom is on serious life support and the patient may be dead

    Thirded. It’s NOT just the past 8 years of suck. It’s the past ~ 17 out of 20 years of suck, added to the President of Hockey Ops saying that my loyalty is worthless to the organization. Why should I care?

  15. oilersfan says:

    seems to me the compromise solution is Klefbom for Ehrhoff. I emailed Reed Wilkins on Ched last week and he thought Klefbom was too much for ehrhoff. Maybe throw in gagner and add back Foligno.

    this allows the Oilers to draft Ekblad and leave him in junior, and for Nurse to stay there, too. Sign Nikitin and the D actually looks like and NHL defence, assuming J Schultz returns to form.

    by having these vets on the team, it would enable maybe, one of Nurse or Ekblad to make the team, if they leave Marincin in the AHL to start the year.

  16. denny33 says:

    RNH is 20 and can’t shave. ( We have to concede we are not winning the cup next year or the year after – no? )

    The core of our team will be 24 when this team – truly – competes for the cup. Current elite players will be mid 30′s and on a deep decline. ( Getzlaf, Sedins will be done, Richards,

    We are waiting for our Keith and Seabrook.

    There is no help on the UFA market. Strong consensus building that you have to draft and develop your own d-men.

    We have one in Nurse and the other one -Ekblad awaits.

    Next year draft – 2C

    We cannot afford to pay the price for a – legitimate top pairing d-man. My two cents.

    At some point in time, some of our non-1st round picks have to make a play to be contributors…
    Kharia or Moroz or Chase…Big Russian Centre…need some form of late round picks to develop.

    Can’t imagine how Maata would be dealt…….

    If people would like a – Legitimate – top pairing guy in their **20′s** – please state the price at which the Oilers would have to pay for such a coveted league wide asset.

    Outside of our core – there are only two valuable chips that I see – Darnell Nurse and Oskar Klefbom.

    So when stories leak out about GM’s telling Mac T not to call unless he is prepared to talk about his core – I get it.

    Obviously, if Mac T is willing to offer his 1st round pick 2014 that changes things….that has Monster value.

  17. sliderule says:

    Woodguy,

    It will be all ok.

    I am a lot older than you and I find this more interesting than the glory years.

    There was no second guessing then.Every thing they touched turned to gold

    To tell you the truth after the first three cups it got a little boring

    Just hang in and when they start winning it will be that much sweeter.

  18. Woodguy says:

    Caramel Obvious,

    Trading Gagner won’t get it done and trading Eberle is robbing Peter to pay Paul.

    The Oilers have an abundance of wingers who score and do not have an abundance of 1LHD

    So its not robbing Peter to pay Paul.

    Its selling from abundance to address deficiency.

  19. denny33 says:

    spoiler,

    Agreed X 10.

    No more wingers – please.

    Centre or a Defenceman

  20. Woodguy says:

    sliderule:
    Woodguy,

    It will be all ok.

    I am a lot older than you and I find this more interesting than the glory years.

    There was no second guessing then.Every thing they touched turned to gold

    To tell you the truth after the first three cups it got a little boring

    Just hang in and when they start winning it will be that much sweeter.

    I watched CBJ, ATL, NYI all flounder.

    I watched OTT, SJS, BOS and other succeed.

    There is every possibility that Hall demands a trade when they still haven’t made the playoffs in April of 2016.

  21. book¡je says:

    Woodguy: I watched CBJ, ATL, NYI all flounder.

    I watched OTT, SJS, BOS and other succeed.

    There is every possibility that Hall demands a trade when they still haven’t made the playoffs in April of 2016.

    I worry more that it will happen in April of 2014, you know, assuming the Oilers don’t make the playoffs.

  22. oilersfan says:

    I would think Gagner plus Klefbom could get either Ehrhoff and Foligno or Big Buff straight up, no?

  23. book¡je says:

    Clay:
    Thirded.It’s NOT just the past 8 years of suck.It’s the past ~ 17 out of 20 years of suck, added to the President of Hockey Ops saying that my loyalty is worthless to the organization.Why should I care?

    As much as I hate to defend Lowe right now, I simply hate it when people twist comments/quotes into something they are not. Here is the quote.

    ” We have two types of fans: we have paying customers and we have people that watch the game that we still care about but certainly the people that go to the games and support we spend a lot of time talking to them, delivering our message.”

    While it is a poorly phrased quote, it does say that Lowe still ‘cares about you’. I hope you feel better now.

  24. denny33 says:

    gcw_rocks,

    Out of all the fans in hockey – should we not be wary of players in their mid 30′s.

    Belanger, Whitney, and Nick Schultz before our eyes…..literally before our eyes.

    Christian Erhoff is older than Nick Schultz.

    Sometimes the decline is gradual, sometime the decline is sudden.

  25. sliderule says:

    Woodguy,

    I think the isles and Jackets are close to turning it around if they can hold onto their players.

    They have drafted well this last few years and it should bear fruit.

    The isles have 15 picks out of 2003 -2010 drafts playing in nhl compared to oilers 10.

    The jackets have 17 but have been held back by their top Russian picks failing.

  26. oilersfan says:

    Whitney did not get old his feet and ankles betrated him

    I wonder if maybe N Schultz was never that good.

    31 is not old. The Sedins are 33…Dan Boyle is 38.

    Seems to me a PMD is generally still good until they are 35, look at Timonen, Boyle, Pronger, Streit, VIsnovsky…

  27. Caramel Obvious says:

    oilersfan:
    I would think Gagner plus Klefbom could get either Ehrhoff and Foligno or Big Buff straight up, no?

    We can dream.

    Gagner plus Klefbom for Ehrhoff straight up would be great. I don’t think it’s enough straight up.

    Gagner plus Klefbom for Byfuglien would also be great. I can’t see it happen. I wouldn’t do it if I was the Jets, not even close.

  28. rickithebear says:

    denny33: We are waiting for our Keith and Seabrook.

    2010 Cup
    Hjarlmasson, Sopel, Campbell faced 1st and upper 2nd
    Kieth, Seabrook lwr 2nd, 3rd , 4ths

    2013 Cup
    Oduya, Seabrook Fir1st Comp
    Leddy 2nd comp
    Rozival 2nd/3rds
    Kieth, Hjarlmasson 3rd/4th

    13-14 Reg season
    Hjarlmasson, Oduya 1st, 2nd
    Kieth, Seabrook lwr 2nd , 3rd, 4th

    12-13 Reg Season
    Hjarlmasson 1st & upper 2nd
    Kieth, Oduya lower 1st and 2nd
    Seabrook 2nd

    they have been used against the 2nds to kick the heck out of the opp.
    That requires a 1st pairing d group.

  29. Caramel Obvious says:

    sliderule:
    Woodguy,

    I think the isles and Jackets are close to turning it around if they can hold onto their players.

    They have draftedwell this last few years and it should bear fruit.

    The isles have15 picksout of2003 -2010 drafts playing in nhl compared to oilers 10.

    The jackets have 17 but have been held back by their top Russian picks failing.

    I think that so much of the trouble comes down to these numbers. A decade of failed drafts kills a franchise.

  30. oilersfan says:

    Tambellini did three good things in his tenure
    1) identified the org had very little good prospects and needed to do a rebuild
    2) fired Prendergast, since it was his fault they had no prospects
    3) built up a good minor league/development system

    we all know about the bad things, the terrible trades, giving away legit NHL players, not signing any good free agents…but I don’t think he gets enough credit for firing Prendergast. He is the guy who is responsible for their being two NHL players (Hemsky and Petry) remaining now from 2000-2008

  31. G Money says:

    Reading the latest comments, some obvious conclusions:

    - Apathy continues to set in

    - Rebuilding is hard

    Burn it to the ground and start again, or accept that contention is still years away?

    Most common comparison for rebuild timeline is the Hawks, who drafted Toews in 2006, Kane in 2007, and won the Cup in 2010. By that token, with Hall being drafted in 2010 and RNH in 2011, we should win the Cup next year. Lolz.

    But less talked about the Hawks timeline is that they had the D and the depth in the system before they actually “rebuilt”: Keith in 2002, Seabrook/Crawford/Byfuglien in 2003, Bolland/Brickell/Brouwer (and Barker, ha!) in 2004, and Hjalmarsson in 2005.

    If Petry/Marincin/Klefbom/Nurse are to be the Oiler Dequivalents, we should expect to contend for the Cup somewhere between 2015 and 2021… the joys of rebuilding backwards.

  32. verdad says:

    Can anyone disagree that the public expulsion of Lowe should be done as quickly as possible?
    If only as gesture by Katz of apology and atonement for the utter failure of Lowe’s tenure.

  33. Oilanderp says:

    oilersfan,

    Here is a list of players who managed more than 100GP drafted by the Oil from 2000-2008:

    2000: Matthew Lombardi, Brad Winchester
    2001: Jussi Markkanen, Ales Hemsky
    2002: Jarrett Stoll, Matt Greene
    2003: MAP, JFJ, Zack Stortini, Kyle Brodziak, Troy Bodie
    2004: Devan Dubnyk, Rob Schremp, Liam Reddox
    2005: Andrew Cogliano
    2006: Jeff Petry, Theo Peckham
    2007: Sam Gagner (the other 2 first round picks this year kill me)
    2008: Jordan Eberle (honourable mention to Hartikainen, we may see him yet)

    I’m by no means a fan of Prendergast, and let’s ignore the development aspect of draft and develop, but there are some useful pieces there.

    I think he is working in scouting for Buffalo now.

  34. steveb12344 says:

    verdad:
    Can anyone disagree that the public expulsion ofLowe should be done as quickly as possible?
    If only as gesture by Katz of apology and atonement for the utter failure of Lowe’s tenure.

    If Lowe’s mandate from Katz since 2010 was to suck terribly and draft future superstars (You know, what has barely touched Oiler silks since the BOTB left town) and try to have an impressive team put together in time for the unveiling of The Jolly Roger. Then one could say he’s actually done a heck of a job thus far.

    I believe that with management’s constant verbal about doing what’s best for the future, that this is the case. If they can make this into a playoff team by the 2015/16 season, than they will be right on schedule. I think they have at least another year to turn this thing around before Darryl starts getting his designer panties in a bunch.

  35. Oilanderp says:

    For fun, let’s compare the same years in Buffalo drafting:

    2000: Paul Gaustad
    2001: Jiri Novotny, Derek Roy, Chris Thorburn, Jason Pominville
    2002: Keith Ballard, Daniel Paille, Dennis Wideman
    2003: Thomas Vanek, Clarke MacArthur, Jan Hejda, Nathan Paetsch
    2004: Drew Stafford, Andrej Sekera, Patrick Kaleta
    2005: Chris Butler, Nathan Gerbe
    2006: Mike Weber
    2007: Tyler Myers, Tyler Ennis
    2008: Zack Kassian (curse his eternal soul if he has one), Marcus Foligno

    Damn. As we can see from this exhaustive scientifically rigorous study, the Oilers drafting in that period lagged behind BUF, 22- 19 :)

  36. eidy says:

    Agree with Woodguy, trading one of our offensively gifted players for a 1D is a must to improve. Ehrhoff is a great option. I hope for Kulikov myself. Actually I hope for both. When Smid was traded and wasn’t offered to everyone, I couldn’t help but think that Florida might have interest in a relatively young former first round draft pick with 500 games experience. The Panthers apparently were shopping him and something around Smid could have worked. However, they had tunnel vision for the goalie and missed on an asset. Since then I think Willis showed that Smid may be eroding in terms of talent, but it was unlikely known to Florida at the time.

    For the draft, I hope they pass on Ekblad for same reasons and I would prefer a center like Draisaitl or Reinhardt in that order for top pick. Then in the later rounds I have been watching C Colby Cave out of Swift Current. Passed over last year, 5 days older than Chase and is just ahead of him in scoring (2 more points in 3 more games).

  37. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Maata is a good return for Gagner. Despres isn’t enough for me. In fact, I’m not sure I’d take him under too many situations. Seems like another Larsen.

    I think with the cap skyrocketing the noise about the Nucks maybe moving Edler is long gone… I don’t think he moves now.

    Ehrhoff. I still don’t know why the Sabres move him, if he wants to move or what it would take… but man is that a nice option.

    Nikitin I think only for a minor deal or if you can straight up sign him in the off season.

  38. Oilanderp says:

    One more comparison since I am obviously bored. Let’s look at the team atop the league today, the Anaheim Ducks:

    2000: Ilya Bryzgalov
    2001: Stanislav Chistov, Martin Gerber, PA Parenteau
    2002: Joffrey Lupul, Tim Brent
    2003: Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry, Drew Miller, Shane O’Brien [wow what a draft]
    2004: Laddy Smid, Tim Brent AGAIN (yes the same guy again, so we will only count him once)
    2005: Bobby Ryan, Brendan Mikkelson
    2006: Matt Belesky
    2007: Eric Tangradi
    2008: Jake Gardiner, honourable mention to Justin Schultz

    That’s 17 NHLers who have played 100 games. Worse than Buffalo or Edmonton for quantity.

  39. verdad says:

    Gagner has no value to anyone.

  40. Hammers says:

    The point is a real defenceman is needed not another willo the wisp. Go after Tyutin ; Myers even Buff for 2 years If McT thinks Ference types cover the bet I’m shocked . Ference is the perfect compliment type player . 2nd , 3rd pairing 15- 17 minutes . He is better than he looks due to time on ice he has been getting.

  41. Hockeyman 99 says:

    I am amused at the people that don’t understand that there were no D at the top of any of our drafts(-Murray) for us to take. Chicago’s rebuild had a false start and that got them their blueline. Pittsburg won a draft lottery and had a 35yr old owner who was a superstar that came out of retirement to help speed their return to the playoffs buy tutoring Crosby. Were any of those things available to us? If we trade too many forwards for needs we will be talking about the need for scoring afterwards. Sadly the answer is the draft in almost all situations and luck.

  42. art vandelay says:

    EastCoastCoal wrote: Yak can get paired back up with his junior buddy. Send them J Shultz or the first too to get them really interested.

    Are you the same guy who proposed this fantasy on ON yesterday?
    Is the water still poisoned with lead this morning where you live b/c you’re not thinking too clearly.

    What’s sad – or funny – is that other Oiler fans think this is a credible notion.

    Maybe instead of fapping over volhammer’s corgis against the close toughs, Oiler fans should maybe watch a hockey game once in a while that doesn’t involve the Mickey Mouse Club. Might learn something about actual hockey.

  43. Fixall with Rexall says:

    Overpay time. We need that elite young D. Montreal hates Subban as much as our management hates Yakupov. Offer the moon. Yaks plus our first would be the starting point and I’d go even higher.

  44. oilersfan says:

    Oileranerp, quantity is one thing, but quality is quite a bit different. Anaheim’s list includes Perry, Getzlaf, Ryan, Lupul, Gardiner…Oilers best are Hemsky, Petry, Stoll, Gagner.

    STu Macgregor drafted Eberle, KP had been kicked upstairs.

    the 2003 and 2007 draft killed the current edition of the Oilers. 2000, 2002, 2004, 2005 didn’t help much either.

    As for Cogliano, for all those lamenting that the Oilers traded him, one thing not mentioned in the BPA drafting philosophy is that by over loading your team with too many of the same kind of player, it reduces their effectiveness at the NHL level, thus reducing their value. In addition, since other teams know you have to trade one, it reduces their trade value yet again. So I am starting to wonder about this BPA thing.

    Cogliano is no better now, he just has the proper complementary players and the proper role. If Sam Gagner played with two big wingers, one who is a natural scorer and one who is good at winning board /front of the net battles, and maybe one of the wingers could help with faceoffs, he would be amuch better player. He may go to Winnipeg for example and play on a line with Scheifele and Evander Kane with Gagner as RW. That would help him to be a better player than even Hall and Eberle because those two players in Winnipeg are so dissimilar to him.

    Anyways, if it is me I don’t trade Gagner. I try to sign Penner or someone like that and play him with Eberle next season to pump up his stats, get closer to even in plus minust then trade him with a higher cap and only onem ore year on the contract. maybe then you get closer to fair value.

  45. book¡je says:

    Hockeyman 99:
    I am amused at the people that don’t understand that there were no D at the top of any of our drafts(-Murray) for us to take. Chicago’s rebuild had a false start and that got them their blueline. Pittsburg won a draft lottery and had a 35yr old owner who was a superstar that came out of retirement to help speed their return to the playoffs buy tutoring Crosby. Were any of those things available to us? If we trade too many forwards for needs we will be talking about the need for scoring afterwards. Sadly the answer is the draft in almost all situations and luck.

    You’re right – Kevin Lowe has to come out of the rafters and put his equipment on and show this team a thing or two about winning!

  46. Hockeyman 99 says:

    Might be an improvement:)

  47. G Money says:

    book¡je: You’re right – Kevin Lowe has to come out of the rafters and put his equipment on and show this team a thing or two about winning!

    Worth a shot. Honestly – could the results be worse?

  48. slopitch says:

    Oilers should target Dmitri Jaskin from the Blues. A young power forward who has yet to make a deep team. STL should be going for it this year and he’s a guy Id go after.

  49. Fixall with Rexall says:

    Backing up a Rexall Pharmacy truck full of money to Dan Girardi’s house this summer would be nice too.

  50. Pouzar says:

    art vandelay:
    EastCoastCoal wrote: Yak can get paired back up with his junior buddy. Send them J Shultz or the first too to get them really interested.

    Are you the same guy who proposed this fantasy on ON yesterday?
    Is the water still poisoned with lead this morning where you live b/c you’re not thinking too clearly.

    What’s sad – or funny – is that other Oiler fans think this is a credible notion.

    Maybe instead of fapping over volhammer’s corgis against the close toughs, Oiler fans should maybe watch a hockey game once in a while that doesn’t involve the Mickey Mouse Club. Might learn something about actual hockey.

    IATL…is that you?

  51. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money: Most common comparison for rebuild timeline is the Hawks, who drafted Toews in 2006, Kane in 2007, and won the Cup in 2010. By that token, with Hall being drafted in 2010 and RNH in 2011, we should win the Cup next year. Lolz.

    By my math, this means we should win the Cup THIS year!

    That’s fantastic! It’s been a long slow haul, great to know we’re finally on the cusp of success.

  52. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Dammit, who put acid in this koolaid?

  53. fifthcartel says:

    Wanting to add another Ference sounds like Orpik being a real target.

  54. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy: By my math, this means we should win the Cup THIS year!

    That’s fantastic! It’s been a long slow haul, great to know we’re finally on the cusp of success.

    Ha, you’re right! And I thought math was my strong suit. Arithmetic on the other hand …

    Bruce McCurdy:
    Dammit, who put acid in this koolaid?

    Oiler Kool-Aid is a delightfully frothy blend of arsenic, mercury, and car battery acid. Mmmmm … drink up!

  55. gogliano says:

    I can’t see Hall asking for a trade–this is his team and I think he internalizes the failure. Asking for a trade because we suck is to admit defeat. He seems too much a competitor for that. The only obvious candidate for a big5 asking out is Yakupov. Not because of the losing / lack of try but because of being blocked out of the core.

    That’s my take anyways. As long as RNH and Hall stay with the rebuild I’m ok being patient and will stick with the fandom. Hopefully they can keep them all but those are the two that I think are pivotal–Hall because he is the best player of a talented bunch (probably one of the most underrated in the NHL, though he seems to be having a tough year) and RNH because he will be a legitimate power v. power #1 center in a couple years.

    #1D are extremely difficult to get via trade and waiting might be the best option. I’d rather they keep the #1–pick a center, Draisatl or Reinhardt, and send them back to junior for the year–and have another impact player on a value contract in 4ish years.

  56. Bag of Pucks says:

    From the armchair GM perspective, MacT’s next few moves seem fairly predictable.

    1) He has Gagner and Hemsky as trade bullets at the deadline. Suspect he’ll target teams in sell mode. with pending UFA D. Obviously he’d be wise to target players whose age ranges fits a solid window of opportunity alongside the core, and then he’s gotta hope like hell he can get them signed in the offseason. Not an easy task when you’re this bad. Players like Nikitin, Pardy, Meszaros, Girardi and Fayne might be some of the ones in the conversation as deadline day approaches.

    If I’m the silver fox, I sign Hemsky prior to the deadline and deal Gagner with the must have return being a Top 4 D from the UFAs available. I suspect however that they’ll turn the page on Hemsky at the deadline as well.

    Conversely, how great would it be if MacT could dump Gagner for a Glencross type UFA in return? Unfortunately, that relies on finding another team as stupid as the Oilers. No easy task that.

    2) Draft. The obvious temptation here will be to draft a 2C with size to replace Gagner and better balance the roster with a big bodied two way stud. Unfortunately, this draft appears to be a weak one (a good reason to consider trading the pick) with most of the top C prospects on the slight side of the scale. With this in mind, I think the objective should be deal the pick for a 1D starter from a team that would be swayed by the allure of a top prospect, or simply a team that badly needs offensive prospects (e.g. CAR, WIN, PHX).

    Getting Subban is a pipe dream. The guy is an absolutely massive fan favorite in Montreal and you could be considering the prospects of another Richard Riot if they were to deal him at the draft. That said, this is the kind of BOLD MOVE MacT has to execute to get this team out of the basement.

    If I look at the kind of teams that might form likely targets for this scenario, I’m looking at: SJ – Vlasic, St Louis – Bouwmeester, Winnipeg – Trouba, NAS – Weber, CAR – Faulk

    Granted none of these players are on the block, but the key here is the allure of the pick. San Jose and St Loo are smart orgs and could see significant value in parting with a top D now in return for a blue chipper with a favourable contract and a longer shelf life. Winnipeg is desparately in need of some top flight offense and goaltending.

    X-Factor, if the Jets would consider something like Yakupov for Trouba straight up, would you do it?

    Finally, for Gord’s sake, take the best G available with the 2nd round pick. Get some legitimate G blue chip prospects in the pipeline and don’t hang it all on Brossoit being the answer.

    3) UFA Targets – Has to be at least a 2D and another Top 4D if Gagner and Hemsky didn’t bring enough back at the deadline. For G, I like Craig Anderson on a short overpay contract, assuming Scrivens is resigned. The guy’s a bit up and down, but when he’s on, he’s top quality. Btw, before you cite Khabibulin, let’s not forget Roloson was good value for money.

    4) Finally, with the likes of Moroz, Yakimov, Khaira, etc. in the system, I think MacT has to avoid the temptation to go whale hunting for big UFA forwards. He looks to have some reasonable candidates in the pipeline and to me, that’s the most cost effective approach. Overpaying for someone (ala Clarkson) just puts too many salary cap eggs in one basket.

    5) Some final asides. 1) Get the Nuge in with Gary Roberts with the sole goal of adding 10-15 pounds of muscle in the offseason. 2) Feed Yakupov cherry soft mins the remainder of this season, in case you need him for a pump and dump scenario at the draft. I like Yak’s upside more over Ebs, but Eberle is more coachable and Hall likes him (so that’s two massive items in his favour). At the moment, Yakupov IS reinforcing the steretypical worries you have with Russian prospects (coachability, lack of try on the backcheck, potential flight risk, etc.). If the rumour is true that Katz forced the pick, how keen will MacT be to ride out the storm with a finicky prospect? 3) How is it that the Anaheim Ducks can find a way to effectively utilize Fistric but the Oilers can’t? 4) Give Taylor Fedun a shot. If nothing else, the fans deserve some feel good stories as this debacle of a season spirals down the drain.

  57. Woodguy says:

    art vandelay:
    EastCoastCoal wrote: Yak can get paired back up with his junior buddy. Send them J Shultz or the first too to get them really interested.

    Are you the same guy who proposed this fantasy on ON yesterday?
    Is the water still poisoned with lead this morning where you live b/c you’re not thinking too clearly.

    What’s sad – or funny – is that other Oiler fans think this is a credible notion.

    Maybe instead of fapping over volhammer’s corgis against the close toughs, Oiler fans should maybe watch a hockey game once in a while that doesn’t involve the Mickey Mouse Club. Might learn something about actual hockey.

    See, this is where I see my posts next fall.

    MIght have more fapping my posts though.

    More corgis too.

  58. Lois Lowe says:

    There’s been a transmission from the Bat Cave. KLowe isn’t going anywhere.
    http://ow.ly/sLJAa

  59. Woodguy says:

    gogliano,

    I can’t see Hall asking for a trade–this is his team and I think he internalizes the failure. Asking for a trade because we suck is to admit defeat. He seems too much a competitor for that. The only obvious candidate for a big5 asking out is Yakupov. Not because of the losing / lack of try but because of being blocked out of the core.

    Hall has been a winner at every level.

    In junior he won the Memorial Cup twice and is the only player in history win the Memorial Cup MVP twice in a row.

    Its very conceivable for him to look at 30,30,29,24,30 (probably) and 25th next year as he puts up the best LW numbers in the NHL and think “Its not me, its them, they are idiots, I’ll never win here, get me out of here”

  60. nycoil says:

    I hate to be a Debbie Downer but it will take a large overpay to pry Ehrhoff from Buffalo for two reasons:
    1) The contract was front-loaded and the big years have been paid. He will soon be a good dman on a below average contract and cap hit.
    2) The recapture penalties apply to Buffalo on the tail end of that contract, not to the acquiring team.
    The back nine on that contract isn’t Edmonton’s risk, it is Buffalo’s.

    Pittsburgh appears to view Maatta very highly. Gagner is not going to bring him back. His value, with his contract and play this season, is at an all-time low. Even if Sid wants him, it’s more likely to be a Goligoski-for-Neal type swap. Ie, lucky to get Despres. No chance of Maatta. If Maatta were available for Gagner alone the deal would have been done by now.

    I think the sights need to be set a little lower to start: Kulikov, Larsson, Gudbranson, etc. See if one or two can be had as buy low candidates. Tired of the Oilers selling low on assets. Let someone else be the desperate party for once.

  61. Woodguy says:

    Here’s the BatLetter:

    To Oilers Fans Everywhere:

    We all thought this was going to be the year the Oilers turned the corner. Obviously, that hasn’t happened, and it hurts. It’s frustrating – for all of us. For our fans, for our players and staff, and for everyone in our community who shares a common bond around a game, a team and a city that we love.

    I know this will almost certainly be the eighth consecutive year since we made the playoffs. I hate that fact as much as anyone, but the reality is that this is only year four of the rebuild that started when we drafted Taylor Hall. The good news, if you can call it that, is that other teams that committed to fundamental rebuilds went through the same kind of droughts over the same kind of time frames, or longer. That doesn’t make it fun for anyone; it just means we have to stay the course.

    Yes, we hoped and expected to be better this year – there’s no question about that. But we’ve also been more active than any team I can think of in rebuilding our organization from bottom to top by supporting player development in OKC and Bakersfield, revamping our scouting organization, naming a new GM and a new coach, signing free agents like Justin Schultz, Boyd Gordon, Andrew Ference, Anton Belov and Ilya Bryzgalov, and trading for players like David Perron, and now Ben Scrivens and Matt Hendricks. And we’re not done.

    But I can also tell you that we are not going to sacrifice the future by doing something short-term. Those days are over and they’re not coming back. If we’re going to rebuild, we want to do it right and we only want to do it once.

    I hear a lot from fans about accountability, so let’s be clear. We are all accountable. That includes me, Kevin, Craig, Dallas, every player who wears our jersey, and every member of our staff. I know Kevin is the target of a lot of personal attacks right now, and that’s really unfortunate. Kevin is a big part of our organization, and it’s not just the Oilers that value his knowledge and perspective. He is consistently chosen, year after year, to play a leadership role with Hockey Canada. But when it comes down to it, this is Craig MacTavish’s team. He is the GM. He makes the calls, and he is accountable for building a team that can compete for the Stanley Cup — year in and year out for years to come.

    That’s our vision. We are committed to it — and we’re confident that we are on the right track.

    Our fans have been incredibly patient and supportive. At the same time, we know there’s a lot of frustration and we are asking you to hang in there while we fight through this and put the next few pieces of the team in place.

    I’ll tell you this, despite everything, we all wear our Oilers colours with the same pride now as we ever have, and as we will when we’re back on top. We hope you’ll do the same.

    We value our fans, we hear you, and we appreciate your support.

    Daryl Katz

  62. Woodguy says:

    Summary:

    -We suck
    -Kevin Lowe isn’t going anywhere because another under performing organization uses him too (Hockey Canada)
    -MacT is making the decisions so stop calling for Lowe’s head

    But when it comes down to it, this is Craig MacTavish’s team. He is the GM. He makes the calls, and he is accountable for building a team that can compete for the Stanley Cup — year in and year out for years to come.

    There’s LT’s money quote.

  63. book¡je says:

    Woodguy:

    But when it comes down to it, this is Craig MacTavish’s team. He is the GM. He makes the calls, and he is accountable for building a team that can compete for the Stanley Cup — year in and year out for years to come.

    There’s LT’s money quote.

    My reading of that quote is that MacT better stay away from Skype, texts, and all forms of electronic communications if the playoffs don’t look likely at this time next year.

  64. TheOtherJohn says:

    Letter is great news. Owner says everyone in the organization is accountable. We fall from 24th back down to 29th on the way to 30th AGAIN

    Guess we are getting a price reduction on next years tickets. That is a really great gesture. Organzation has underperformed…..so team will give fans some money back because they, being accountable, have not earned it

  65. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: year in and year out for years to come.

    This is incredibly weak English.

    It reads like an alien wrote it, trying to appear human.

  66. Woodguy says:

    Tyler starting to dig deep into why Hall’s CF% is off this year: http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=6582#comment-347755

  67. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909: This is incredibly weak English.

    It reads like an alien wrote it, trying to appear human.

    Yeah, its pretty awful.

    Maybe an intern wrote it?

  68. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: To Oilers Fans Everywhere:

    Generous words toward the unwashed scum who help make up some of the balance sheet.

  69. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: Maybe an intern wrote it?

    Just think: Eventually there will be millions of people no longer able to read or write, just using telephones with various smiley faces to do whatever they need doing by the big machine.

    Maybe he’s preparing us for the day when oiler fans won’t even need to talk anymore…just take a Rexall pill every morning then sing their way to work at the cesspit.

  70. book¡je says:

    Woodguy: Yeah, its pretty awful.

    Maybe an intern wrote it?

    I suspect the instructions were to write it to about a grade 5 level of writing. The Oilers have a broad audience of ticket holders.

  71. Surly says:

    I guess the season ticket holder survey they sent out came in with some dismal results. Research (I believe mostly based on Albert Mehrabian’s work) found that communication is 7% words chosen, 38% Tone and Voice, and 55% body language.

    So by taking the path of the “Letter to fans”, we are left guessing at 93% of Katz’ message. Is he genuine, is he blowing smoke? We can’t tell. Plus, I think we all would like to see him answer some MSM questions (not as many softballs as the old days…they are now showing some stones like they did during MacT’s GM presser).

    Alas, we have the recluse owner. I don’t always agree with what Eugene Melnyk has to say but at least he’ll have the courage to speak without script.

  72. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909: Generous words toward the unwashed scum who help make up some of the balance sheet.

    If it was just to residents of Edmonton, it would read “To the saps who are financing my new rink and selling out the building for my historically bad franchise”

  73. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money: Oiler Kool-Aid is a delightfully frothy blend of arsenic, mercury, and car battery acid. Mmmmm … drink up!

    You forgot the all-important masking agent, Elixir of the Eighties. Potent, potent stuff.

  74. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy: Yeah, its pretty awful.

    Maybe an intern wrote it?

    Patrick Laforge?

  75. russ99 says:

    At least there was some response. They’re all aware the natives are restless.

  76. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Patrick Laforge?

    I don’t think so.

    Didn’t threaten to move the franchise or disparage Edmonton as a hockey market enough.

    Had I read:

    “foregoing better markets, we’ve decided to stay in Edmonton and give you the privilege of financing Darrell’s arena, so quit whining about Lowe, you’re lucky you have a team”"

    then I might agree with you.

  77. Yeti says:

    Sadly, that letter could have been written any time in the last four years. Accountability comes when people identify and acknowledge their mistakes, rather than pretend that their mistakes are simply part of a grand masterplan.

  78. LostBoy says:

    What an underwhelming letter. But, really, it’s not like he’s feeling much heat with the building still sold out forever, even if it’s not actually physically full most nights.

    I guess I’m sort of alone in this, but it feels like the full dimensions of this season’s failure hasn’t really sunk in.

    By most measures, there was gradual improvement in the first three seasons of the “rebuild”. GF nudged up each season. GA nudged down each season. Adjusting for the lockout, points totals went 62-74-77.

    Right now we’re on pace for 58. You can really only make comparisons back to when the shootout was brought in, because of all the three point games. But since then there have only been three finishes below 60. 56 is the lowest (Philly in 2006-2007).

    This is on track to be the historically worst season in the Oilers’ NHL history.

    I, personally, don’t want to stay this course. [Though I understand that the Oilers' unique ownership-management situation means that there is apparently no choice.]

  79. godot10 says:

    Hey Batman.

    Not everybody. Some of us said MacT’s choice for helmsman had steered the Oilers ship directly towards the iceberg.

  80. melancholyculkin says:

    I worry that this mythical 1D is becoming the Oiler’s Moby Dick. Part of me suspects it’s the natural reaction to the ever so brief affair with Pronger.

    Now, I’m all for acquiring a high end defenceman. I’d trade Eberle for Byfuglien or Yak for Subban and agree that such a deal would likely leave the team further ahead. However, I think the conversation has gotten some tunnel vision of late and we all need to recognize that there is more than one way to build a winner and that acquiring a so called “1D” will not instantly turn this team into a contender.

    I hope MacT does everything he possibly can to acquire such a player this summer, but I also hope he doesn’t get fixated and neglect the rest of the roster.

  81. OilClog says:

    So Mr. Lowe should do the right thing and step aside..

    We’re the loyalist fan base in the league hands down and if all Tiers of Oiler fans are calling for his head, not because of the rebuild but because of insanely idiotic comments.. Anyone with Respect for the Oiler jersey would step aside if they’re seriously about seeing this franchise turn it around. Lowe has too many burned bridges with the players around the league and now his own fan base.

    Clue in Batman!

  82. gogliano says:

    Woodguy:
    gogliano,

    I can’t see Hall asking for a trade–this is his team and I think he internalizes the failure. Asking for a trade because we suck is to admit defeat. He seems too much a competitor for that. The only obvious candidate for a big5 asking out is Yakupov. Not because of the losing / lack of try but because of being blocked out of the core.

    Hall has been a winner at every level.

    In junior he won the Memorial Cup twice and is the only player in history win the Memorial Cup MVP twice in a row.

    Its very conceivable for him to look at 30,30,29,24,30 (probably) and 25th next year as he puts up the best LW numbers in the NHL and think “Its not me, its them, they are idiots, I’ll never win here, get me out of here”

    We’ll probably just disagree on this, but I think truly competitive sorts are all the more likely to view their own success as a result of merit as opposed to chance. And this maps on to team success, not just individual success, so a team failing eats at them. Does Hall know he is (a) a great player and (b) somewhat lucky pre-NHL to have found himself on teams capable of winning? Sure, in the abstract. But psychologically, I can’t imagine a real competitive sort like Hall wanting to leave a team because it isn’t good enough–particularly when the organization is building up talent for the long haul. The most competitive and most successful people I know would view this sort of setback as a challenge, and would be all the more committed to the challenge because it is the one piece of countervailing evidence that they aren’t as good as they think they are. At least the sorts I know, and I think Hall seems to resemble them, would embrace the challenge as a chance to show people how good he really is.

    All psychological conjecture, of course, but I think it fits the personality.

  83. FastOil says:

    You mean we’re not going to make the playoffs??? I can’t get behind an owner who’s a quitter.

  84. Ben says:

    I am neither a first, nor second, but an ‘Infinite Tear’ Oilers fan — and I am so very glad that Master Katz has stirred from within his neon-lit pee-jar cavern to commission this fine comedy letter for all of us to enjoy today.

  85. Bag of Pucks says:

    Translation, please keep putting your bums in the seats. It’s really embarrassing at the country club when I have to explain why I’m unable to fill a warm hockey arena in an arctic wasteland in the middle of winter.

  86. Ribs says:

    Wow, a concession speech from the owner now! I was not expecting that. You’re up, Coach Short-Shorts.

  87. vangolf says:

    I’m as sick of the continual losing as everyone else is, but people have personalized this team’s failure way too much. I used to frequent Hockeybuzz and HF, but the over-reaction/name calling/buffonery was too much. That’s why I like this board so much for the most part (ie., real debate over the team).

    That said, people need to realize that Katz and Co. do not owe the fans anything. You are NOT OWED a good team. The team (unlike the GB Packers) is not a public trust and we are not shareholders. As fans, we are merely observers of a billionaire’s hobby and our choice is binary; support (tickets, merch, etc.) or do not support.

    My observation of Oiler fans is that we are some of the most vested in the league, but we have gone too far with the negativity. This year is lost and everyone knows it, so why does everyone keep piling on. I swear it seems like a competition between some fans as to who can be the most negative. Culture change is needed within the organization, but dare I say it is also needed from the fans.

  88. Alpine says:

    vangolf,

    This will probably sound pretty negative, but every time the Oilers win a few in a row, the fan base is typically awash with positivity, where “hey this team isn’t bad” and “we’re only 2 (likely unattainable) players away from being pretty good” are common phrases uttered. So I do believe winning more than a third of their games in the not too distant future should help the OIlers pick up the spirits of their fans a little more. A culture change shouldn’t be expected from the fans until the org commits to doing so themselves and starts producing non-embarassing results.

  89. till_horcoff_is_coach says:

    Brings me back to the MacT is going nowhere call-in. Thanks DK for providing some optimism.

    Many on here said the five year rebuild was Lowe buying himself time… it’s been painful but nice that candle is almost done burning.

  90. Pouzar says:

    vangolf: I’m as sick of the continual losing as everyone else is, but people have personalized this team’s failure way too much. I used to frequent Hockeybuzz and HF, but the over-reaction/name calling/buffonery was too much. That’s why I like this board so much for the most part (ie., real debate over the team). That said, people need to realize that Katz and Co. do not owe the fans anything. You are NOT OWED a good team. The team (unlike the GB Packers) is not a public trust and we are not shareholders. As fans, we are merely observers of a billionaire’s hobby and our choice is binary; support (tickets, merch, etc.) or do not support. My observation of Oiler fans is that we are some of the most vested in the league, but we have gone too far with the negativity. This year is lost and everyone knows it, so why does everyone keep piling on. I swear it seems like a competition between some fans as to who can be the most negative. Culture change is needed within the organization, but dare I say it is also needed from the fans.

    From a glass half empty kinda dude, great post.

  91. prairieschooner says:

    vangolf:
    I’m as sick of the continual losing as everyone else is, but people have personalized this team’s failure way too much.I used to frequent Hockeybuzz and HF, but the over-reaction/name calling/buffonery was too much.That’s why I like this board so much for the most part (ie., real debate over the team).

    That said, people need to realize that Katz and Co. do not owe the fans anything.You are NOT OWED a good team. The team (unlike the GB Packers) is not a public trust and we are not shareholders. As fans, we are merely observers of a billionaire’s hobby and our choice is binary; support (tickets, merch, etc.) or do not support.

    My observation of Oiler fans is that we are some of the most vested in the league, but we have gone too far with the negativity.This year is lost and everyone knows it, so why does everyone keep piling on.I swear it seems like a competition between some fans as to who can be the most negative.Culture change is needed within the organization, but dare I say it is also needed from the fans.

    Sorry Vangolf but you are wrong!
    The oilers are a corporate juggernaut in the city of Edmonton they are part of the fabric of daily life
    They chose to be this way and they have a corporate responsibility to produce a successful team.
    And for the record they have told their fans, 1st and 2nd tier that they were going to be successful so we have a right to hold them to their words!

  92. vangolf says:

    Alpine,
    I think that is my point (ie. fickleness of fans). Take the Winnipeg game for instance. The Oilers almost won a road game against a motivated team that is higher than us in the standings. Had one or two pucks gone the other way, this board would have been Hendricks this, Gordon that, Eberle hands, etc. Fact is that game was not the horror show that some posters here make it out to be.
    In my other post-Festivus airing of grievances, posters really need to give up the Kevin Lowe/2 tier comments. The man has his faults and should move on to other pursuits, but to continually bang the drum on a bad soundbite (ie., we all know that is not what he meant) comes off as juvenile and irksome.

  93. vangolf says:

    Prairie Schooner,
    I agree they are part of the fabric, but that is on the fans getting invested. Corporate responsibility is a gimmick PR term that publicly traded corporations throw out all the time. The Oilers owe the fans/city nothing. If they did, how could the owner hold Seattle over our heads? The obvious parallel is Rexall Corporation. We have no say on where they open locations, services provided, dividends paid, change of ownership etc. Our only choice is to support the business or not.

  94. Bag of Pucks says:

    Like any business, when the product is poor, customers complain. If the Oilers don’t like it, improve the product. Oh that’s right, they’ve been trying for the last 7 years but are completely inept and clueless.

    You’re right. When dealing with bumbling idiots, pity is probably a better response than negativity.

    Poor Daryl Katz.

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