LANDER BACK TO OKLAHOMA

The Edmonton Oilers sent Anton Lander to the minors this afternoon. Lander has seen playing time in the AHL and NHL this season, and there are signs of progress.

  • OKC: 18, 9-6-15 45sog
  • NHL: 12, 0-0-0 -3

At the AHL level, his offense is emerging (as we discussed this morning) and his NHL numbers show some interesting things beyond the boxcars (Corsi for % not bad the last two games, some penalty-killing duty). I remain convinced he’s exposed because the GM and coach have no loyalty to him (they have more attachment to Horak as an example, or Acton) but you never know.

Has some ability to agitate, isn’t lost in the faceoff circle, can skate well, maybe he has a future. I bet it is elsewhere. His replacement is Roman Horak, and Horak was acquired by the current GM. See how this works? Bah! Thank God my kid isn’t a hockey player. I like that AHL point total, hope he plays 30 more games in the AHL this season.

Photo by Rob Ferguson, all rights reserved.

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92 Responses to "LANDER BACK TO OKLAHOMA"

  1. jp says:

    One positive here is that they’ve given Arcobello a spot in the lineup (which wasn’t necessarily the case before his injury).

    Lander has shown some progress for sure. He’ll have to bring some offense with him to the NHL at some point if he’s going to stick (though as noted many times before, he hasn’t exactly had great linemates to help him out).

    Having both Lander and Horak in the system doesn’t seem like such a terrible idea.

  2. oliveoilers says:

    Just keep developing nicely Lander. If all you turn out to be is a great call-up who isn’t lost playing 5 max NHL games, then I’m happy, we don’t have enough of those.

    On another point, anybody seen the Hall hate-a-thon on ON? It’s gone from reasons why he shouldn’t make the Olympic roster to burning effigies in less than 100 comments. New record for the unwashed masses?

  3. hoser313 says:

    The kid never saw anything other than 4th line duty with grinders on the wing. Remains completely unclear how he’d look as a future 3C or even 2C.

    I’d still like to see him get 1 game with better wingers.

  4. oliveoilers says:

    hoser313,

    I would also like to see what he could do with a better supporting cast, but there is nothing in his style of play or figures that would suggest 2C. For example, when Yak was on the 4th line, it was plain he didn’t belong. Lander does. Not taking anything away, but he is what he is, and one of the Oilers main problems IMO is square pegs into round holes. On the flip side, I would love it if he was a Buf or Brent Burns and succeeded where he shouldn’t.

  5. Thiru says:

    I like looking at CORSI REL when comparing guys playing similar roles.

    SSS alert (for Lander and Horak), but among forwards who have played this year:

    LANDER (6/19)
    ACTON (18/19)
    HORAK (19/19) only 2GP

    Let’s look at AHL numbers (just P/GP):

    LANDER (15/18)
    HORAK (20/32)
    ACTON (6/12)

    Lander was the highest draft pick of the three. According to Willis on ON, he has been a bonafide first line centre for OKC in all situations.

    IMO, Lander has done all you can ask of him this year. I liked his game a lot. Very responsible, and I think there’s some offensive upside there.

  6. VanOil says:

    Elliotte Friedman ‏@FriedgeHNIC 2h
    Cogliano new deal in ANA — 4yrs, $12M

    Good for him. Speedy defensively responsible winger who will score every time the Oil come to town.

  7. Bank Shot says:

    I will be surprised if Lander or Horak end up as anything more than tweeners at this point. Neither has established themselves in the NHL when given chances.

    Kind of remind me of MA Pouliot. They don’t look terribly out of place, but they don’t really add anything either.

  8. hoser313 says:

    oliveoilers,

    I agree he doesn’t have a great shot and he doesn’t have speed, but he’s good at digging out pucks in battles and making a first pass to other forwards or defencemen. Arguably that’s a nice contrast with the current “perimeter” players in the Oilers’ line-up.

  9. Thiru says:

    BTW, Arcobello is #1 with a bullet among forwards for CORSI REL. What a good story he is!!! It’s nice when math and the eye agree, and he’s a shining example of that this season.

    I apologize in advance for the digression, but watching the past few games and now taking a look at the numbers, I have a few ideas on how some lineup tweaks could help.

    Observations:
    1) RNH is a wonderful player, but right now looks overmatched by the comp that he’s being asked to take on. Not Eakins’ fault; opposition coaches are keying in on him on the road.
    2) Gagner is struggling in all three zones, agreed? Better last game, but still.
    3) Nick Schultz has an awful, AWFUL habit of throwing the puck to his partner in a time and place where said partner has no outlet options. It’s happened numerous times.

    Some numbers:
    1) Nuge is doing decently by CORSI REL (7/19), but by QoC is taking 3rd hardest minutes. That doesn’t really jive with what I’m seeing, but I think Eakins tries to protect him at home, only to have him killed on the road (Eakins can’t hide everyone).

    2) Gagner has toughest comp by QoC; I think the opposition keys in on him as a matchup, for obvious reasons.

    3) Schultz is playing 4th toughest minutes and getting decimated CORSI REL wise (11/11 among D who have played this year).

    Conclusions:
    1) On the road in particular, split up RNH and Hall. I would go Hall – Gordon – Hemsky. Smyth has had a wonderful year QoC and CORSI REL wise. Smyth – RNH – Perron is your second unit.

    2) Opposition coaches are keying in on Gagner. He plays 4th line C/LW on the road. Put him on the PP if you want to. Joenssu/Horak – Gagner – Gadzic. Preferably, Gagner – Lander – Gadzic/Joenssu. Your other unit is Yakupov – Arcobello – Eberle. That’s two good possession forwards with Yak.

    3) Cut Schultz RFN. He doesn’t play another game for this club this season. Enough is enough. Marincin/Larsen/Potter/LT’s children are better than him.

    By TOI on the road, here’s what you do (EV):
    1) Hall – Gordon – Hemsky
    2) Smyth – RNH – Perron
    3) Yak – Arcobello – Eberle

    In terms of TOI, Hall’s line gets the most, and then the 2nd and 3rd line get equal amounts. 4th line gets whatever is leftover. Hemmer, Hall, Gordon play 20+ minutes a game, every game.

    RNH gets lots of help from Smyth and Perron, while Yak gets help from Arco and Ebs, two of the best possession players on the team (I don’t agree with trading Eberle, btw — great possession player with skill on a terrible team).

    For the D – Schultz sits forever. Belov is 1st in CORSI REL among regular D (Grebs and Marincin ahead of him). He plays 25+ minutes a game starting now. Larsen’s played the toughest comp among Oiler D with a good CORSI Rel. That’s your top pairing. Petry and Ference is your second. Both of those pairings should be 1A and 1B. Third pairing is Schultz + whoever.

    Addition by subtraction. Could be wrong, but by the numbers and by eye the Oilers could get much better very quickly by sitting Schultz and Gagner.

  10. TheOtherJohn says:

    Like the move. Give Lander balance of AHL season to play 18 minutes a night PP, PK…. all key situations

  11. bookje says:

    Hemsky feels like his role on the Oilers might keep him from getting to the Olympics

    http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/Oilers+Ales+Hemsky+worries+defensive+role+hurting+chances/9350452/story.html

    He is very professional about it, but it’s interesting to see another player who is being affected by this team in a negative way.

  12. godot10 says:

    Thiru:

    1) Nuge is doing decently by CORSI REL (7/19), but by QoC is taking 3rd hardest minutes. That doesn’t really jive with what I’m seeing, but I think Eakins tries to protect him at home, only to have him killed on the road (Eakins can’t hide everyone).

    2) Gagner has toughest comp by QoC; I think the opposition keys in on him as a matchup, for obvious reasons.

    3) Schultz is playing 4th toughest minutes and getting decimated CORSI REL wise (11/11 among D who have played this year).

    Conclusions:
    1) On the road in particular, split up RNH and Hall. I would go Hall – Gordon – Hemsky. Smyth has had a wonderful year QoC and CORSI REL wise. Smyth – RNH – Perron is your second unit.

    Nuge and Hall (and Eberle) basically outplayed or sawed off everyone they played against last year. They lost the battle only a few times. The problem is not with Nugent-Hopkins. The problem is Eakins systems don’t work at all. He hasn’t designed systems that work with the talent he has, which is why the Oilers have gone backwards with better players and one more year of experience for the younger guys.

  13. Lowetide says:

    good grief. Another goal for Curtis Hamilton.

  14. Thiru says:

    bookje:
    Hemsky feels like his role on the Oilers might keep him from getting to the Olympics

    http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/Oilers+Ales+Hemsky+worries+defensive+role+hurting+chances/9350452/story.html

    He is very professional about it, but it’s interesting to see another player who is being affected by this team in a negative way.

    That bit about 83 helping out Yak brought a smile to my face.

    Hemsky was, is, and always will be a class act. He’s done nothing but listen to what coaches have wanted from him, and he’s gone out and done it.

    He’ll light it up next year with Zetterberg and Datsyuk, I’m sure.

    EDIT: not that I don’t want him back. I love him as a player. 3 more of him, please!

  15. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Good grief this Anthem singer is irritating.

  16. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Does Mark Lee survive the new broadcast deal?

  17. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    On Lander.

    I’ve stopped worrying about him. That was two years ago and maybe last year.

    He’s got it figured out. He probably won’t be an Oiler, but he’ll be fine, elsewhere in the NHL or off in Europe.

    I’ll dearly miss him though. That angular jaw of his always impressed me.

  18. Lowetide says:

    Lander scored tonight, and then Gernat. OKC up 5-3 late

  19. flyfish1168 says:

    Greg Chase 2 assist so far hitmen ahead 3-0 against warriors

  20. flyfish1168 says:

    Lowetide,

    Is Klefbom hurt again?

  21. Derek says:

    Thiru:
    BTW, Arcobello is #1 with a bullet among forwards for CORSI REL. What a good story he is!!!It’s nice when math and the eye agree, and he’s a shining example of that this season.

    I apologize in advance for the digression, but watching the past few games and now taking a look at the numbers, I have a few ideas on how some lineup tweaks could help.

    Observations:
    1) RNH is a wonderful player, but right now looks overmatched by the comp that he’s being asked to take on. Not Eakins’ fault; opposition coaches are keying in on him on the road.
    2) Gagner is struggling in all three zones, agreed? Better last game, but still.
    3) Nick Schultz has an awful, AWFUL habit of throwing the puck to his partner in a time and place where said partner has no outlet options. It’s happened numerous times.

    Some numbers:
    1) Nuge is doing decently by CORSI REL (7/19), but by QoC is taking 3rd hardest minutes. That doesn’t really jive with what I’m seeing, but I think Eakins tries to protect him at home, only to have him killed on the road (Eakins can’t hide everyone).

    2) Gagner has toughest comp by QoC; I think the opposition keys in on him as a matchup, for obvious reasons.

    3) Schultz is playing 4th toughest minutes and getting decimated CORSI REL wise (11/11 among D who have played this year).

    Conclusions:
    1) On the road in particular, split up RNH and Hall. I would go Hall – Gordon – Hemsky. Smyth has had a wonderful year QoC and CORSI REL wise. Smyth – RNH – Perron is your second unit.

    2) Opposition coaches are keying in on Gagner. He plays 4th line C/LW on the road. Put him on the PP if you want to. Joenssu/Horak – Gagner – Gadzic. Preferably, Gagner – Lander – Gadzic/Joenssu. Your other unit is Yakupov – Arcobello – Eberle. That’s two good possession forwards with Yak.

    3) Cut Schultz RFN. He doesn’t play another game for this club this season. Enough is enough. Marincin/Larsen/Potter/LT’s children are better than him.

    By TOI on the road, here’s what you do (EV):
    1) Hall – Gordon – Hemsky
    2) Smyth – RNH – Perron
    3) Yak – Arcobello – Eberle

    In terms of TOI, Hall’s line gets the most, and then the 2nd and 3rd line get equal amounts. 4th line gets whatever is leftover. Hemmer, Hall, Gordon play 20+ minutes a game, every game.

    RNH gets lots of help from Smyth and Perron, while Yak gets help from Arco and Ebs, two of the best possession players on the team (I don’t agree with trading Eberle, btw — great possession player with skill on a terrible team).

    For the D – Schultz sits forever. Belov is 1st in CORSI REL among regular D (Grebs and Marincin ahead of him). He plays 25+ minutes a game starting now. Larsen’s played the toughest comp among Oiler D with a good CORSI Rel. That’s your top pairing. Petry and Ference is your second. Both of those pairings should be 1A and 1B. Third pairing is Schultz + whoever.

    Addition by subtraction. Could be wrong, but by the numbers and by eye the Oilers could get much better very quickly by sitting Schultz and Gagner.

    You mean Nick Schultz right? He has been absolutely horrid this year by eye and by stat.

    D partner WOWY CF% sorted from most minutes together to least.

    A Ference with: 41.8 w/out: 45.9
    J Schultz with: 38.5 w/out: 47.2
    J Petry with: 38.6 w/out: 47.9

    C Potter with: 45.4 w/out: 40.0
    A Belov with: 47.4 w/out 48.0

    For J Schultz and Petry, playing with Nick is like swimming with concrete boots.

  22. Young Oil says:

    Why can’t his team make picks like Greg Chase more than once a decade?

  23. Young Oil says:

    Also, does anyone know anything about Travis Sanheim? Rookie defenceman for the Hitmen this year, has a nice frame to fill out (6’3”, 190lb), and is 34, 3-9-12 with a +12 this season. Also has 7 points in his last 4 games.

  24. jp says:

    Lowetide:
    Lander scored tonight, and then Gernat. OKC up 5-3 late

    Nice comeback from the Barons tonight! Came back from down 0-3 to win 5-3, including 3 third period goals. 2G for Gernat, 1G,1A for Lander. “Only” the 1G for Hamilton, but 5 shots – he really is playing well.

    flyfish1168:
    Lowetide,

    Is Klefbom hurt again?

    I don’t know any details, but he must be. Unless Todd Nelson has HSed him 2 games in a row in favor of Erik Burgdoerfer (25 years old, first 2 career AHL games following 3.5 ECHL seasons).

  25. Andy P says:

    jp: Nice comeback from the Barons tonight! Came back from down 0-3 to win 5-3, including 3 third period goals. 2G for Gernat, 1G,1A for Lander. “Only” the 1G for Hamilton, but 5 shots – he really is playing well. I don’t know any details, but he must be. Unless Todd Nelson has HSed him 2 games in a row in favor of Erik Burgdoerfer (25 years old, first 2 career AHL games following 3.5 ECHL seasons).

    OKC is well coached. Unlike the Oil. I would welcome Todd and his present assistants coaching the Oil in 2014.

  26. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    flyfish1168:
    Lowetide,

    Is Klefbom hurt again?

    jp: I don’t know any details, but he must be. Unless Todd Nelson has HSed him 2 games in a row in favor of Erik Burgdoerfer (25 years old, first 2 career AHL games following 3.5 ECHL seasons).

    Carter Baum ‏@CarterBaum 3h
    Likely scratches for the #OKCBarons: Klefbom (upper body), R. Hamilton (lower body), Kessy, MacIntyre and Fyten.

    Carter Baum ‏@CarterBaum 3 Jan
    Klefbom misses his 2nd straight game tonight (upper body). Ryan Hamilton misses his 3rd straight (lower body). #OKCBarons
    Expand Reply Retweet Favorite More

    OKC Barons Gameday ‏@BaronsGameDay 3 Jan
    Scheduled scratches for #OKCBarons: MacIntyre & Ewanyk (healthy); Klefbom & Ryan Hamilton (injured).

  27. flyfish1168 says:

    Andy P: OKC is well coached. Unlike the Oil. I would welcome Todd and his present assistants coaching the Oil in 2014.

    Andy P,

    I agree with you that OKC is well coached. But at this point I would like someone with a previous experience as an NHL coach r wait till the summer shakes out to see who else is available. The person I really waited last year was Bruce Boudreau before he was hired by the ducks.

  28. Andy P says:

    flyfish1168: Andy P, I agree with you that OKC is well coached. But at this point I would like someone with a previous experience as an NHL coach r wait till the summer shakes out to see who else is available. The person I really waited last year was Bruce Boudreau before he was hired by the ducks.

    But Todd is a known entity, the core likes him, respects him, and knows his systems, and may be the only decent prospect available, given this team’s likely reputation as coach killers.

  29. jp says:

    Andy P: OKC is well coached. Unlike the Oil. I would welcome Todd and his present assistants coaching the Oil in 2014.

    And if Nelson and co. were coaching the Oilers in 2013-14 you’d be complaining about the “rookie” coaches lack of experience. Imo the Oilers issues run much deeper than the coach and his assistants.

    Edit: I’ll agree with you that if Eakins is fired mid-season that Nelson would be a good replacement, at least in the “interim” role.

  30. Thinker says:

    Andy P,

    Except the one who sings, I couldn’t take it on oil change more than once.

  31. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Courtney Cox in Masters of the Universe.

  32. Thiru says:

    Derek,

    Haha yeah sorry, Nick Schultz. Just a disaster this year, and those numbers you posted are further evidence. Nice!

    I’d be very surprised if he got a contract next season, from anyone. Those are awful, awful numbers, and like you said he is full value for them.

  33. denny33 says:

    Buffalo wins ……

  34. Andy P says:

    jp: And if Nelson and co. were coaching the Oilers in 2013-14 you’d be complaining about the “rookie” coaches lack of experience. Imo the Oilers issues run much deeper than the coach and his assistants.Edit: I’ll agree with you that if Eakins is fired mid-season that Nelson would be a good replacement, at least in the “interim” role.

    If you check out my prior comments you’ll see I have been fully supportive of Eakins, allowing for the string of injuries to top players, Dubnyk’s collapse, and the first 30 games for everything to settle in.
    I agree that the Oilers issues are way deeper than the coach and his assistants, for sure.

  35. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    denny33:
    Buffalo wins ……

    Omark with an assist.

  36. Thiru says:

    Lander 1G 1A tonight.

    There’s just no way this guy can’t play a role in our top 9. Tough minutes and close to a PPG now in the A? He plays with some edge and he’s responsible.

    Give him the rest of the season there, but this guy should win a job in TC next year.

    Unless he gets Rajala’d.

  37. Thiru says:

    Gernat with 2G.

    Wouldn’t mind seeing him up here for a cup of coffee before the season is out.

  38. denny33 says:

    I will be candid…..not a fan of Eakins.

    But, I also think our core has issues.

    Also have come to agree that the media has been more right about our top 4 defenceman. I don’t think any of them is top 4 material.

    Called out Andrew Ference when he was signed and he has been worse than I thought.

    Not sure what has happened to Petry…

  39. Numenius says:

    Chase: 2-2-4 on the night.

  40. jp says:

    Thiru:
    Derek,

    Haha yeah sorry, Nick Schultz. Just a disaster this year, and those numbers you posted are further evidence. Nice!

    I’d be very surprised if he got a contract next season, from anyone. Those are awful, awful numbers, and like you said he is full value for them.

    He’ll get a contract next year with someone, but I agree with you otherwise.

    Aside from the recent theories about Smid’s departure, I had assumed the team thought he and Schultz Sr. were redundant (true to an extent), but picked Sr. to stick around. He’s got an A for God sakes, they obviously think something of him. What a shame.

    I’d never really considered this as a possibility before, but what if the Oilers actually re-sign Sr.? Wouldn’t that be a hoot. They did give him a letter, so I suppose we shouldn’t be shocked if it happened.

  41. denny33 says:

    Team canada….you select a team of players that pro scouts did not love and what are we to expect. Domi named Ohl player of the week following naming of team canada.

    Swedish player calls it like it was – not a very talented roster.

  42. denny33 says:

    Not a homer but Pelech over Nurse….

    Was it just me or did Pelech look slow sometimes”

  43. Ryan says:

    Bank Shot:
    I will be surprised if Lander or Horak end up as anything more than tweeners at this point. Neither has established themselves in the NHL when given chances.

    Kind of remind me of MA Pouliot. They don’t look terribly out of place, but they don’t really add anything either.

    +1

    This

  44. jp says:

    Andy P: If you check out my prior comments you’ll see I have been fully supportive of Eakins, allowing for the string of injuries to top players, Dubnyk’s collapse, and the first 30 games for everything to settle in.
    I agree that the Oilers issues are way deeper than the coach and his assistants, for sure.

    But you do think Nelson (and assistants) would have done a better job than Eakins?

    It’s certainly possible, but I’d guess the Oilers would be in a very similar position right now with Kruger or Nelson (and new assistants) at the helm vs. Eakins. That’s just my opinion though, we can’t know for sure unfortunately.

  45. gvblackhawk says:

    denny33:
    Not a homer but Pelech over Nurse….

    Was it just me or did Pelech look slow sometimes”

    I was not very impressed by Pelech, Bigras, or Dumba. Big mistake to leave Darnell Nurse off that team in my opinion. On forward, Max Domi, Emile Poirier, and Connor Brown would have brought a lot of offense. Hockey Canada (Sutter’s) selection process was flawed and it opened the door for a lot of criticism. Hopefully Nurse gets an opportunity next year.

  46. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    gvblackhawk: Hopefully Nurse gets an opportunity next year.

    He won’t be eligible next year.

  47. gvblackhawk says:

    jp: But you do think Nelson (and assistants) would have done a better job than Eakins?

    It’s certainly possible, but I’d guess the Oilers would be in a very similar position right now with Kruger or Nelson (and new assistants) at the helm vs. Eakins. That’s just my opinion though, we can’t know for sure unfortunately.

    Do you think that Nelson and his staff would have been any worse than Eakins? At least the players respect Nelson. I’m not sure if anyone can confidently say the same thing about Eakins. And Nelson seems to be able to get the most out of his teams. Look at the existing OKC squad — that is a garbage roster devoid of any offense and a mostly rookie defense. Yet they remain in the hunt for a playoff spot.

  48. Numenius says:

    I’d love to see Todd Nelson come up and be an Associate Coach.

    He’d bring the right kind of attitude and motivation that’s so badly lacking.

  49. gvblackhawk says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: He won’t be eligible next year.

    Why not? He doesn’t turn 20 until February, 2015.

  50. gcw_rocks says:

    jp,

    I do. Eakins and his fitness gig and the stupid army jacket, and the way he calls put some players but gives others a pass. And that defensive scheme is a disaster. An avalanche fan noted it is very similar to the failed defensive scheme Joe Sacco used in Colorado. And err know how well it worked for them.

    Nelson may have not been the answer, but he builds his strategies to maximize the strengths of his players and had good relationships with most of the players already. T that would put him two steps up on Eakins right there.

    I still wanted Lindy Ruff though.

  51. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    gvblackhawk: Why not?He doesn’t turn 20 until February, 2015.

    MacT.

  52. Lowetide says:

    Chase 2-2-4 +3, Dillon Simpson 2 goals, Moroz 1-2-3 +2

  53. G Money says:

    jp: But you do think Nelson (and assistants) would have done a better job than Eakins?

    It’s certainly possible, but I’d guess the Oilers would be in a very similar position right now with Kruger or Nelson (and new assistants) at the helm vs. Eakins. That’s just my opinion though, we can’t know for sure unfortunately.

    We’ve been through five coaches in six years. During that time, the following aspects of the Oilers game has remained constant:

    - No ability to break the other teams cycle in the d zone (last guy able was Souray)
    - No cycle game in the o zone
    - Fire drill defensive coverage
    - Disorganized breakouts (not since that magical 35-game stint from a healthy Whitney)
    - Unwilingness to take shots, aka “passing the puck into the net”
    - No backcheck

    We describe the above ills as if they are new, but they’ve been around forever.

    When the same players play the same game year after year, no matter the head coach, it may be time to look somewhere else.

    I would start with Bucky and Smith, who *have* been constants through all of the above. Whether they are part of the problem or just innocent bystanders, it is clear they are not part of the solution, and at least the team can say they are taking SOME meaningful action by turfing them and replacing them with experienced coaches, preferably one can teach defense and one who can run special teams.

  54. gvblackhawk says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: MacT.

    It’s not like Oilers management to rush their prospects. I can’t believe you would insinuate that!

  55. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Lowetide:
    Chase 2-2-4 +3, Dillon Simpson 2 goals, Moroz 1-2-3 +2

    Kharia: 1-1-2 even

  56. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    As useless as Healy is… at least he tries to put a story together with video and so forth. Weekes is just plain pointless.

  57. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    gvblackhawk: It’s not like Oilers management to rush their prospects.I can’t believe you would insinuate that!

    I pray to tiny baby Gord that MacT keeps Nurse in the OHL next year, but he’ll be on the big club.

  58. Thiru says:

    Gagner on the market as per EF on HNIC. Sounds as though both sides have decided that moving on is in their best interests.

    This is the right thing for both sides. Gagner can’t afford to go on like this (I think he’s more capable than he’s shown this season, but he’s been terrible), and the Oil need an upgrade on D.

    MacT has to get this right. Please, please, please.

  59. Thiru says:

    Greg Chase, 16th in WHL scoring.

    Only a few guys above him are younger:
    Reinhart, Draisatl, Descheneau (by one month), Scherbak, Bjorkstrand, Petan.

    Not bad company to be keeping.

    Reinhart and Draisatl will be top 10 (top 5?) picks in this year’s draft. Bjorkstrand was a 3rd rounder, Petan went in the second round (both last season).

    Good pick!!!

  60. jp says:

    gvblackhawk,

    gcw_rocks,

    I don’t think Nelson (or another year of Kruger) would have been worse for the standings, though I don’t think they’d have been much better either. And for sure the players would be happier in their losing than they are now.

    But as G Money just pointed out, and many others have before, there are a bunch of problems with this team that have persisted through multiple coaches. I think Eakins is TRYING to change years worth of bad habits. It’s not an easy thing to do. (Some of) the players likely hate him for it, and it’s something Kruger doesn’t appear to have even attempted.

    Eakins may ultimately fail in this – it’s not looking great at this point, and I’m sure he and MacT never expected it to be this difficult (though bad luck and losing can throw a wrench into plans). Maybe this is even misidentification of the issue(s) by Eakins and MacT – maybe allowing the team to continue playing shinny hockey and adding some big defensemen is really the best path. I don’t think so though, and I see this as a very important power struggle for the future of this team.

    It’s also possible that MacT (and Eakins) have correctly identified the issue, but Eakins isn’t the man to fix it. This could be the case, but I think if MacT is forced to fire “his guy” because the team wouldn’t play for him, we might be quickly approaching a blowup of the core of this team and another reset of the rebuild. No one wants that, but they can’t keep going through a coach a year.

  61. denny33 says:

    G Money,

    Great post….agree.

  62. denny33 says:

    Thiru,

    Can’t imagine what the value for Gagner….

  63. oilersfan says:

    I wonder if gagner would be picked up on waivers…can’t imagine his value is high at all.

    He”ll be like cogliano … We develop the guy for years give him away for futures and watch him blossom somehwere else while we wait for the futures to become presents…rinse repeat

  64. Hammers says:

    Wouldn’t be surprised to see Lander end up in a Detroit organization or that type . We really screwed this guy much like Omark & Magnus .As for Eakins if McT should let him go he ends up behind the bench . What was it Sather said way back if they don’t play for the G.M. they maybe out of the league not just the team .

  65. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Canada seems to be having a lot of trouble finding seems through the Russian shot-blockers. But they are controlling the play… poor, poor Fucale.

  66. Lowetide says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Canada seems to be having a lot of trouble finding seems through the Russian shot-blockers. But they are controlling the play… poor, poor Fucale.

    He’s a fine young goalie having some wobbly moments in a couple of big games. The team is playing well imo, they’re certainly better than 2-0 based on pace of play.

    Need to bury one.

  67. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: seems

    You are a moron.

    Lowetide: He’s a fine young goalie having some wobbly moments in a couple of big games. The team is playing well imo, they’re certainly better than 2-0 based on pace of play.

    Need to bury one.

    I agree he’s a fine young goalie, but I actually think — based on his history — he’s been playing slightly above himself.

    At any rate, there is nothing fair about being a goalie in a tournament like this. Nothing.

    Canada definitely has the puck… Russia doing a good job of clogging lanes to the net and that Vasileski… wow.

  68. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    That should have been a penalty shot. He got no shot attempt off.

  69. Oilanderp says:

    I’m still trying to get over what an excellent defensive game the Fins played yesterday!

  70. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    I hope MacT is listening to Ferraro ripping on Buf and Win for leaving Grig and Dumba on the vine.

    No more leaving prospects on the bench anywhere. Please.

  71. Oilanderp says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Grigorenko still playing WJs… obviously a huge disappointment. We will take him off your hands, Buffalo. You need to rebuild. Dirty lazy Russians are no way to do that.

  72. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Oilanderp:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Grigorenko still playing WJs… obviously a huge disappointment.We will take him off your hands, Buffalo.You need to rebuild.Dirty lazy Russians are no way to do that.

    I’m sure BUF feels he’s a disappointment. But… cripes, he’s 19!

    The way crappy teams’ (hello Oilers!) expectations work… reasonable is far from home.

  73. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Slappy’s got some agitator in him. Maybe Chase can help him develop that further.

  74. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Nice defensive play by Yakimov on Horvat. excellent.

  75. Oilanderp says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    The way crappy teams’ (hello Oilers!) expectations work… reasonable is far from home.

    Indeed. I know it’s a little early (no it’s not at all becasuse Oilers) but I hope MacT goes insane and signs a million stop-gap free agents of all types this off-season to ensure that our youngsters are, for the first time in team history, forced to ply their trade in the CHL and AHL for years more than what we are used to.

  76. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Oilanderp:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Indeed.I know it’s a little early (no it’s not at all becasuse Oilers) but I hope MacT goes insane and signs a million stop-gap free agents of all types this off-season to ensure that our youngsters are, for the first time in team history, forced to ply their trade in the CHL and AHL for years more than what we are used to.

    Well, maybe you’re on to something here… MacT did, afterall, sign a million 5-8 D… but, he still came damn close to keeping Nurse up.

  77. David says:

    Don’t know if it’s been mentioned yet but Chase had 2 goals and 2 assists last night. He is now 38GP, 23G, 23A, 46P. Moroz had 1G and 2A, he’s now 39GP, 23G, 16A, 39P. Kharia had 1G and 1A, he’s at 30GP, 10G, 11A, 21P.

    Watching Kharia at training camp and pre-season he was really impressive. He was already pushing aside NHLers and driving the net hard. I was expecting more offence from him in junior. Hopefully he has a better second half.

  78. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    David: Watching Kharia at training camp and pre-season he was really impressive. He was already pushing aside NHLers and driving the net hard. I was expecting more offence from him in junior. Hopefully he has a better second half.

    More would be nice from him for sure.

    But he was battling injury for a while and Constantine is a notoriously defensive-oriented coach.

  79. David says:

    Do we know if he’s playing first line? Second? Getting Lots of PP time?

  80. David says:

    I wonder if the Oil Kings would consider trading for him for a playoff run. They already did one deal sending away futures though so they might be done.

  81. DeadmanWaking says:

    G Money: I would start with Bucky and Smith, who *have* been constants through all of the above. Whether they are part of the problem or just innocent bystanders, it is clear they are not part of the solution, and at least the team can say they are taking SOME meaningful action by turfing them and replacing them with experienced coaches, preferably one can teach defense and one who can run special teams.

    This is 50% management by external optics and 50% witch-hunt. Perhaps the human species is wired in such a way that this is nevertheless a winning strategy. No loss. We never really expected to be invited to Zaphod’s parties in the first place.

    Several members of the Edmonton MSM go back even further than our unwinning assistants. Other “constant” contestants include the city, the climate, the travel, the fishbowl obsessiveness, and the Tom Poti boo-sterism by the legions of customers who are always right, and know it, loudly.

    A dark horse gaining rapid ground in the contest of constancy is organizational churn. How do you fire that? Ay caramba, that’s a conundrum.

  82. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    That last minute was pretty sloppy… urgency gave way to fatigue I think.

  83. Genjutsu says:

    DeadmanWaking: This is 50% management by external optics and 50% witch-hunt.Perhaps the human species is wired in such a way that this is nevertheless a winning strategy. No loss.We never really expected to be invited to Zaphod’s parties in the first place.

    Several members of the Edmonton MSM go back even further than our unwinning assistants.Other “constant” contestants include the city, the climate, the travel, the fishbowl obsessiveness, and the Tom Poti boo-sterism by the legions of customers who are always right, and know it, loudly.

    A dark horse gaining rapid ground in the contest of constancy is organizational churn.How do you fire that? Ay caramba, that’s a conundrum.

    DMW: Please never stop posting. You continue to be the best thing in the comments by a country mile.

    Thank you.

  84. G Money says:

    DeadmanWaking: This is 50% management by external optics and 50% witch-hunt.

    Indeed, but if you’ve ever been in management (I’ve been on the darkside for almost 20 years now), you know that optics are a critical part of management.

    This is even moreso true for a “company” like the Oilers, which unlike most companies, has a customer base – or maybe fans should be enlikened more to shareholders – that is incredibly strongly vested and associated in the results of the company.

    If only I could “diversify” my portfolio of hockey teams, it would make the pain of being the worst in the index for the last 8 years a lot more bearable. Unfortunately, I have only one hometown, and so I cannot bring myself to care much about how the Hawks or Blues are doing.

    Firing Bucky and Smith is 50% optics, but the other 50% is not a witch hunt – it is an exorcism.

  85. G Money says:

    Oilanderp:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Indeed.I know it’s a little early (no it’s not at all becasuse Oilers) but I hope MacT goes insane and signs a million stop-gap free agents of all types this off-season to ensure that our youngsters are, for the first time in team history, forced to ply their trade in the CHL and AHL for years more than what we are used to.

    This was arguably yet another of Tambo’s failings. He got the “suck so hard we pick first’ part of acquiring elite talent pretty much down pat.

    The part that he failed egregiously at was in failing to build the depth to surround, protect, and nurture that elite talent.

    “Protect” includes, as you say, leaving kids down in Jr and the AHL long enough to physically and mentally mature their games.

    We’ve talked a lot about the Oilers failings deep in the draft being a large part of why the depth in the team does not exist.

    But as the Lowe-GM’d MacT-coached Oilers of yore demonstrated for many years, it is quite possible to build the 3-4 lines and 2-3 D pairings that are the foundation for a solid hard-working team through trades and free agent signings. And the amazing part is they did it when the Oilers were a cap-constrained team in an era when there was no cap for teams like the Leafs, Rangers, etc.

    Those Oiler “farm teams” were better than the dreck we’ve been watching for the last five plus years.

  86. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    DeadmanWaking: This is 50% management by external optics and 50% witch-hunt.

    I think this is more true of the firing of KLowe than the assistants. And, I think both moves would be well warranted.

    The assistants have a long track record of failure. Now, it is clear that most of the failure of the last 8 years falls at the feet of KLowe and Tambo and it is clear that assistants can only make so big a difference to a team. These aren’t good reasons to stick with a failing status quo.

    At the very least, alternatives ought to be explored.

  87. Andy P says:

    jp: But you do think Nelson (and assistants) would have done a better job than Eakins?

    It’s certainly possible, but I’d guess the Oilers would be in a very similar position right now with Kruger or Nelson (and new assistants) at the helm vs. Eakins. That’s just my opinion though, we can’t know for sure unfortunately.

    Yes. Because Bucky and Smith more than Eakins vs. Nelson.
    Your opinion will prove correct if the problem turns out to be that Hall, Eberle and Gagner are the core group undermining the coaches.

  88. Bank Shot says:

    G Money:
    But as the Lowe-GM’d MacT-coached Oilers of yore demonstrated for many years, it is quite possible to build the 3-4 lines and 2-3 D pairings that are the foundation for a solid hard-working team through trades and free agent signings.And the amazing part is they did it when the Oilers were a cap-constrained team in an era when there was no cap for teams like the Leafs, Rangers, etc.

    Those Oiler “farm teams” were better than the dreck we’ve been watching for the last five plus years.

    I think the problems with giving Lowe and Mact much credit for the early to mid 2000′s teams are:

    A. Sather built up the asset base in the late 90′s that the brain trust would squander until there was only ashes remaining.

    B. There was actually less competition for the second tier players then there is now. After the Rangers and their I’ll had their fill, the mid tier money teams like the Oilers got to have their turn. Now you have basically every team putting bids in on the mid tier guys, in some instances just so they can reach the cap floor. The Oilers had less competition in acquiring talent.

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