Adhere to the plan. Four simple words, and it’s taking me a lifetime to learn them. Perhaps that’s why I’m pleasedthe Oilers are taking a patient course with young Russian Nail Yakupov.
- Dallas Eakins on Nail Yakupov: “Just adhering to the plan. Not trying to do things by himself, not trying to adlib, not trying to play like he did last year. We want him to play the system and the way we’re trying to get our whole group to play. And that’s his challenge. He fully understands it. And he fully understands that there’s a little bit of heat on him to play and play well. He’s with two good players, two experienced players, he’s going to get some looks on one of our power plays where we’ve put him right back to where he’s been before.”
The Hall line have scored 12 goals in the last 10 games, the Eberle line 4. Smyth has 2, the defense chimes in with 2 more and that’s 20 goals in 10 games. Lordy. Sam Gagner has had a miserable 10 games by the boxcars, I don’t believe the Oilers will stick with him much longer. If he struggles tonight, and Arcobello is indeed ready, I suspect we’ll see the Yalie playing the middle on the 2line.
Amen. I still think there’s a small chance, but every indication we’re getting from the plugged in media is that he’s at the outer marker and really not a serious candidate. After what we discovered about the American decision-making process yesterday, I won’t be as disappointed if Hall doesn’t make it. Despite the importance of the decision, it appears the Amercians use a magic 8-ball (Brian Burke) and left off two impact players (Buff, Ryan) because bias.
TWO RUSSIAN BEARS
Anton Slepyshev had a big game (3 assists, effective play) for the Russians this morning in their quarterfinal game against the Americans. He now sits at 5, 2-5-7 +7 for the tournament and has 13 shots. He is tied for 6th in tournament scoring and was very impressive in today’s game. Slepyshev made a strong defensive play late in the game, marking his man from the neutral zone and tying him up as a terrific pass to the slot arrived—it was a key play because at that point it was a one goal game and the chance would have been point blank if not for the Russian captain.
Bogdan Yakimov (5, 1-1-2 +2) is the shutdown center for Russia and played heavy minutes late, including ownzone faceoffs and penalty-killing. He’s a big center (!!!!) and has been very good in the tournament, and his resume is a perfect match for the Oilers needs across the pro rosters.
- Greg Chase 36, 21-21-42 +20
- Darnell Nurse 37, 9-26-35 +3
- Mitch Moroz 37, 21-14-35 +14
- Jackson Houck 37, 19-13-32 -1
- Jujhar Khaira 29, 9-10-19 +2
- Aidan Muir 25, 8-11-19 +12 (*USHL*)
- Kyle Platzer 38, 9-8-17 -3
- Marco Roy 13, 3-12-15 +3
- Ben Betker 40, 4-7-11 -4
I had Nurse #9 in the draft and he’s covered the bet so far despite the WJ disappointment. Nichushkin certainly looks like the better player now, but we know players develop at different rates and it’s a marathon not a sprint. At the other end of the spectrum, I had Greg Chase #51 in the draft and some scout is going to be dining out on that pick for a long, long time based on early returns. Roy looks good, but has to stay healthy.
The 2013 entry draft has nice arrows so far, what with the Russians at the WJ and Nurse, Chase and Roy at home. If Houck or Muir can step up their play we might be talking about a very good crop of pro players, maybe even a couple NHLers in there.