THAT’S THE WAY OF THE WORLD

We’ve been heading down the 2014-15 road for some time now, and a sign of changing seasons and themes is Dallas Eakins discussing the future in media. The latest verbal is nicely summed up in this  Terry Jones article.

  • Eakins: “Hallsy is able to take on the heavier load against those bigger opponents and D men. I can keep Hallsy away from Shea Weber, but I think Hallsy can handle Weber. But Nuge is in a different realm for me. Nuge just isn’t there physically yet. And I mean ‘yet.’ He’s getting there.”

I believe this is a big part of the Oilers problem. We focus on D problems, but the center position has only Boyd Gordon in the group who can effectively play the man’s game required in the NHL. Nuge seems to be wearing down the season, and I do wonder if a healthy summer and a consistent workout program will help him increase strength. It isn’t really fair to criticize—Nuge gets to a lot more battles because of his ridiculous skating—but the past few weeks are the first time in his NHL career that I’ve actually worried about him.

  • Eakins: “The habits of our core guys, the guys who are going to be the difference-makers in the future, are improving. But we still have a lot of work to do around them. We need to supplement this group with some veteran leadership, some guys who can make plays and guys who are going to win battles in this conference. Craig and I have to sit down and make the right decisions for our hockey club to add and subtract what we need to do to move up in our conference.”

This is where I begin to have some concern with the MacT-Eakins pairing. Even when they were talking about playing a possession game last spring and summer, there was also a thread inside the verbal that acknowledged a need for big physical players. That need has been addressed many times over through roster moves, specifically Luke Gazdic, Matt Hendricks and Mark Fraser.

  • Luke Gazdic 37.7 Corsi for % 5×5, with a 51.8% zone start
  • Matt Hendricks 42.6 Corsi for % 5×5, with a 26.9% zone start
  • Mark Fraser 42.1 Corsi for % 5×5, with a 38.6% zone start

The Gazdic slotting tells us Eakins is using him for reasons that cannot be justified based on statistical performance (not a criticism, just a fact), and the Hendricks-Fraser additions are low-cost (well, relatively low cost) attempts to solve problems. I would include the attempted David Clarkson signing in the Hendricks-Fraser pile, at a higher pay level. Hendricks has certainly covered his bet (in my opinion), but Fraser has been exposed. I don’t think he’s going to fill the role the Oilers envision.

I’ve rambled on about this forever, but the key is getting good players.  If they’re ALSO big players, music! The Oilers would be better off with Mark Arcobello than an ineffective 6.05, 230 center next season. I’m not onside with the names mentioned and acquired so far in this area, and suspect it comes down to availability. Part of me suspects David Clarkson may yet be an Oiler, via trade this summer.

I have no problem with signing players to longer terms, that’s one area Edmonton can use to their advantage (thanks, Mr. Katz!). However, if the summer comes and we’re looking at David Clarkson, Mark Fraser and Zenon Konopka as solutions, we’re not going to be discussing the Oilers as a possession team.

It isn’t possible.

RED ROVER RED ROVER, WE CALL ANOTHER GOALIE OVER!!

tuohimaa1

Frans Tuohimaa is in Oklahoma City, as the Oilers run through goalies at a record clip. What does this mean if you’re Tyler Bunz or Ty Rimmer or Chet Pickard? Competition, and a lot of it.

LANDER AND PITLICK

lander common

I thought Anton Lander and Tyler Pitlick showed some things in the San Jose game, but Lander can’t cash and that’s going to be the theme this offseason. We know a player who can post numbers in the AHL can do it in the NHL (there’s no magical mystery), but Anton’s playing in some tough luck right now and really has been since he arrived. The difference right now? He’s getting a push with really good players. Come on, Anton!

The pressure for Pitlick is less because the role he’ll play next year (should he make it) will be 4line winger. Pitlick does bring a physical game, but was more impressive in his previous stint (before the injury) and I do wonder if he’s showing enough currently. It’s a tough item to play against these strong California sides, but Pitlick could do himself an enormous favor by having a physical impact on Friday night.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

dog afraid10 this morning, TSN 1260. A busy day, scheduled to appear:

  • Dennis King, Oilogosphere icon. Expos! We’re talking Expos this morning, maybe an Oiler question tacked on the end.
  • Andrew Bucholtz, 55 yard line. CFL combine, draft and season on the way! Well, sorta.
  • Rob Vollman, ESPN and Hockey Prospectus. NHL Free agents! Are there any good ones???
  • Rob Soria, Oil Drop. Gagner, goalies and the draft.

10-1260 text, twitter @Lowetide_ and this is going to be grand!

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153 Responses to "THAT’S THE WAY OF THE WORLD"

  1. Halfwise says:

    LT you might want to edit the reference just below your second bullet. Think you meant the MacT Eakins pairing not MacT Scrivens pairing. Althought Scrivens is eloquent enough to be mentioned in the same sentence as MacT.

  2. Lowetide says:

    Halfwise:
    LT you might want to edit the reference just below your second bullet. Think you meant the MacT Eakins pairing not MacT Scrivens pairing. Althought Scrivens is eloquent enough to be mentioned in the same sentence as MacT.

    Ha! Had two edits, that was one of them. You’re hired!! :-)

  3. Halfwise says:

    Well that was quick!

    Lander could use a bounce or two, but to me he seems to be in the right place all the time.

    Is that due to Todd Nelson’s coaching in OKC, and the carrot of AHL players knowing they must change their game in order to get to the NHL?

    If so, the theme that we have some entitled players on the big squad who can’t be bothered to learn the D-zone part of the game properly gets a bit more support.

  4. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    JW has two relevant posts up on ON.

    a more optimistic reading of Eakins’ presser:

    http://oilersnation.com/2014/3/27/dallas-eakins-spells-out-the-oilers-off-season-plans

    and an interesting thought about burning a year off of Frans’ contract to move on quickly if it doesn’t work out (probably won’t):

    http://oilersnation.com/2014/3/26/oilers-assign-goalie-frans-tuohimaa-to-oklahoma-city

    ————
    Stauffer on the Radio and on that Panel for the Oilers website has mentioned repeatedly that he sees Lander sticking as a utility forward with the Oilers next year. I think this has changed my perception of things.

    Sounds like Lander has almost punched his one-way card already for next year.

    ———-
    If they sign Fraser (I think they very well might) and Gazdic (I also think they very well might), I think we can start looking for a second signature to institutionalize MacT/Eakins. The disjunction between the language used and actions suggests something is really off here…

    of course, my theory that they belong to the cohort of in-between hockey minds (half stuck in the past; half up with the new thinking) applies.

  5. frjohnk says:

    Clarkson has 4 goals 10 points this year at a AAV of 5.25M and becomes a UFA after 2019-20 when he turns 36.

    Compared to Clarkson, Gagner and his contract look like a bargain.

  6. Rondo says:

    Oilers management are using a new strategy in answering question about the team. I think it is a PR move.

  7. oliveoilers says:

    “We know a player who can post numbers in the AHL can do it in the NHL (there’s no magical mystery)”

    Alex Giroux.

  8. Clay says:

    I’ve said it before, but it worries me greatly that Mark Fraser is on the Oilers roster. It worries me because of what it says about the management group’s ability to judge talent.

    Fraser is worse than AHL replacement-level talent. He’s slow, he’s a defender who can’t defend, and a face-puncher who doesn’t punch faces. He has zero upside. His only play in the defensive zone with the puck is to skate behind the net and blindly ring it up the boards.

    I just don’t get it. On the one hand I really do think that MacT has an eye for defensemen (his previous stint as coach proves that), but good GOD! How can they seriously play this guy ahead of anyone? Let alone re-sign him.

  9. Ducey says:

    MacT is an idiot because we fear he might re-sign Fraser.

  10. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    oliveoilers:
    “We know a player who can post numbers in the AHL can do it in the NHL (there’s no magical mystery)”

    Alex Giroux.

    And Omark. And, Hamilton.

    The difference is going to be at what age are you putting up points and what is blocking you from NHL work.

    Sometimes it is something critical, like footspeed, or defensive acumen. Sometimes it is something trivial, like bias.

    But, I suspect the real distinction is age. If you are putting up points in the AHL with some consistency and are 23 and under you’re a bona fide prospect.

    that’s Vollman’s cut off isn’t it? 23?

    After that (Hamilton, Omark, Arco) and the road gets a lot steeper to fend off “suspect” scares.

  11. LMHF#1 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: And Omark. And, Hamilton.

    The difference is going to be at what age are you putting up points and what is blocking you from NHL work.

    Sometimes it is something critical, like footspeed, or defensive acumen. Sometimes it is something trivial, like bias.

    But, I suspect the real distinction is age. If you are putting up points in the AHL with some consistency and are 23 and under you’re a bona fide prospect.

    that’s Vollman’s cut off isn’t it? 23?

    After that (Hamilton, Omark, Arco) and the road gets a lot steeper to fend off “suspect” scares.

    I still get a kick out of the example of Mr. Jacques. One of the worst players in NHL history from the beginning of his career until 09-10 (statistically speaking) and yet the guy can score in the AHL. It’s a big leap and some skills transfer easier than others.

  12. hardcore says:

    Lowetide,
    I have the same worry in terms of MacT and Eakins over commitment to adding toughness at the expense of real hockey skill. While moves like the Perron addition and the scrivens/fasth pickups have me dancing in the street, the narrative and recent actions around adding toughness just won’t seem to cool down to a reasonable level. Case in point – Eakin’s comments.

    Even more worrying are the things I’ve heard MacT say as recently as this past Monday at one of the oilers season ticket holder luncheons (the only reason I was able to attend was because one if my closest friends was nice enough to invite me along – he buys the tickets for a group of us who take as many games as we can over the year).

    It was a really eye opening experience and really cool thing the oilers do for season ticket holders.

    One of the first things I noticed was MacT’s uncanny willingness to offer up unsolicited thoughts about the team when responding to any and all questions. Maybe he was feeling an irresistible need to explain himself after the recent HNIC debacle against Calgary or maybe this is just MacT. I get the sense it’s more the latter to be honest but whatever the reason it provided a lot of tell type info that gave me a better sense of where he’s going in the off season. Here’s a rundown of what I heard with the caveat that I am often referred to by my wife as over thinking things.

    1. When asked about what the biggest need on the team was to be able to push the team to playoff contention, the first thing MacT mentioned was toughness. Not defense, not centre depth, not anything else – size and toughness. This despite the person asking the question offering up those and other options.

    MacT went on to talk about defense and did say in no uncertain terms they will be bringing I a veteran defenseman who can lead by example with smart play so that’s good. That said, the immediate talk of toughness was a real bummer way to kick off his Q&A.

    2. When asked about promising d – he couldn’t say enough good things about Nurse. He said he’d be cautious about bringing him in next season but that he sees this kid as everything that’s been advertised and more. He also seemed to talk more about the potential of klefbom than Marincin – his only real comment about the latter being that he’s seen thicker arms on a pair of glasses. He was also asked about all the other prospects and was really high on Dillon Simpson stating that they are working to get him signed as soon as possible.

    3. He’s uncomfortable with his 2nd line saying a couple times throughout the day – without really being asked – that the make up was off. He didn’t single out gags or anyone but obviously has fixing the second line on his to do list.

    4. Despite being critical of the fact that some nights yak plays 14 of his 16 minutes in our own end – he feels that it’s a failure of the way the team is playing more so than on him. He went to great lengths to express how he feels that with better team play yak will be making teams pay and spending more time where he belongs – in the oppositions end – in no time. He referenced Stamkos a lot through out the day in regards to yak and even nuge a bit.

    5. He wasn’t impressed with hall saying he wasn’t embarrassed by the events of Saturday night. I get the sense he really wants hall and the core to grab the leadership reins but realizes they still need veteran presence to learn what it really means to be committed to win night in and night out.

    6. Eakins isn’t going anywhere – MacT is a huge supporter and he’s here till MacT isn’t. End of story.

    7. When asked about the draft he talked about the players in this order – Ekblad, that German dris.. kid, and then Reinhardt. It’s one of the first two he mentioned – book it.

    That’s all I can remember for now – there was more but I think the first item about toughness provides a little credence to your comments today.

    Anyways, thanks for your relentless coverage of all things oil…glad I could contribute.

    HC

  13. ChiliChunk says:

    What does this mean if you’re Tyler Bunz or Ty Rimmer or Chet Pickard? Competition, and a lot of it.

    You’re probably already aware but Bunz stopped a shot with his throat and is out with a fractured larynx.

    http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/story/2014-03-23/tyler-bunz-injury-update-oilers-prospect-fractures-larynx-while-in-net-bakersfield-condors-goalie

  14. Ducey says:

    frjohnk:
    Clarkson has 4 goals 10 points this year at a AAV of 5.25M and becomes a UFA after 2019-20 when he turns 36.

    Compared to Clarkson, Gagner and his contract look like a bargain.

    I don’t see how the Oilers wind up with Clarkson due to his no trade.

    However, I think people are underestimating him. He has had a tough year with injury and suspension.

    About 1/3 of his points have always come from the PP. He isn’t getting much PP time with the Leafs. He is also shooting at 4.6%. He also has some of the toughest zone starts on the Leafs – 22% of his starts in the offensive zone.

    His CF% is 42.9%. It was 61.2% with the Devils last year and 58.2% the year before.

    He might be a good candidate for a bounce back year.

  15. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    ChiliChunk: You’re probably already aware but Bunz stopped a shot with his throat and is out with a fractured larynx.

    http://www.sportingnews.com/nhl/story/2014-03-23/tyler-bunz-injury-update-oilers-prospect-fractures-larynx-while-in-net-bakersfield-condors-goalie

    Man… these kids can’t catch one damn break. nothing.

  16. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    also, how is not wearing a neck guard a thing?

  17. frjohnk says:

    hardcore,

    Thanks for that. I figured oilers would have Ekblad at the top of their wish list, the Draisaitl, then Reinhart.

  18. admiralmark says:

    Who here actually has any faith in the pro scouting dept of the Oilers? Clarkson, Nylander, Heatley, Vanek, Barker, Grebeshkov. To name a few. Now some were not crippling as in Grebeshkov for example. But it indicates just how out to lunch these Scouts are in terms of what an NHL player looks like. And before you say we could of used Vanek consider $7 Million cap Hit PLUS 4 1st rounders. Thats Eberle, Paajarvi, Hall, RNH. So when they aren’t dodging bullets with moronic moves thwarted by teams matching there offer or players outright rejected the massive contract they are going after craptastic players for too much $$$. You couple all this with the incredible pressure and desperation that currently exists… this is a recipe for disaster .

  19. Lowetide says:

    oliveoilers:
    “We know a player who can post numbers in the AHL can do it in the NHL (there’s no magical mystery)”

    Alex Giroux.

    Giroux did fine. He scored 6-5-11 at evens in his NHL career while playing 458 ev minutes. 458 divided by 60=7.63 and 11 divided by 7.63 is 1.44/60 at evens. If we took a long look at the AHL guys who made the NHL for 200+ games and Giroux, we would get many who scored in that range before finding a role.

    Giroux was a scorer, he never got the opportunity. He could have been an NHL player, just like Lander or Hartikainen. He proved it in the AHL, and was fine in his very small NHL sample size.

  20. Woodguy says:

    Jones missed the key part of the Eakins quote, which is why as Rom mentioned, Jon had a more optimistic view of the presser.

    Here’s Jon’s quote (which is accurate if you watch the presser):

    We need to supplement this group with probably some veteran leadership, some guys who can make plays, and not so much a toughness aspect but guys who are going to win battles in this conference.

    Jones leaving out the “not so much a toughness aspect” slants what Eakins says.

    They Oilers do need to win more battles and I am glad they are trying to target players that do without worrying about their “toughness”

    Toughness is for Spector and Jones to write about.

    Winning battles and keeping/gaining possession of the puck is for Eakins and MacT to worry about.

  21. Woodguy says:

    Eakins’ presser is great btw.

    See it here: http://video.oilers.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=587390&catid=4

  22. LMHF#1 says:

    Woodguy:
    Jones missed the key part of the Eakins quote, which is why as Rom mentioned,Jon had a more optimistic view of the presser.

    Here’s Jon’s quote (which is accurate if you watch the presser):

    We need to supplement this group with probably some veteran leadership, some guys who can make plays, and not so much a toughness aspect but guys who are going to win battles in this conference.

    Jones leaving out the “not so much a toughness aspect” slants what Eakins says.

    They Oilers do need to win more battles and I am glad they are trying to target players that do without worrying about their “toughness”

    Toughness is for Spector and Jones to write about.

    Winning battles and keeping/gaining possession of the puck is for Eakins and MacT to worry about.

    Problem – Eakins thinks that Andrew Ference does these things.

  23. su_dhillon says:

    I am having an increasingly difficult time believing any verbal that Eakins & MacT think making this team into a procession team is the way to win at least not in the way those who believe in analytics do.

    When they see the Kings and Sharks they see the measurables, they see height weight as opposed to their CF%.

    I think it was Rom who brought up player usage by Eakins recently and for all the really smart things he can say and at times the credence he seems to give to analytics, his deployment of players doesn’t indicate the he believes those things.

    Archobello is the easiest and most obvious example, having a 4th line that gives you zero chance to be competitive but makes sure Gadzic is there for face punching every night, playing Mark Fraser game after game to the same very expected results, lets you know that they have a healthy appetite for that type of player.

    We will see more of them come this off season, probably slightly better players than the ones they replace but they will leave much better players on the market.

    I agree with LT about a guy like Clarkson and in fact I think there is a much better chance Clarkson is on this team next year than Kulemin, which sucks.

  24. Marcus Oilerius says:

    Woodguy:
    Jones missed the key part of the Eakins quote, which is why as Rom mentioned,Jon had a more optimistic view of the presser.

    Here’s Jon’s quote (which is accurate if you watch the presser):

    We need to supplement this group with probably some veteran leadership, some guys who can make plays, and not so much a toughness aspect but guys who are going to win battles in this conference.

    Jones leaving out the “not so much a toughness aspect” slants what Eakins says.

    You guys here are making me very distrustful and disliking of the mainstream media.

    That kind of selective quoting seems downright manipulative.

  25. LMHF#1 says:

    Marcus Oilerius: You guys here are making me very distrustful and disliking of the mainstream media.

    That kind of selective quoting seems downright manipulative.

    To be fair, some of it is utter incompetence rather than malevolence.

  26. Woodguy says:

    I think MacT may have learned a very valuable lesson for free in the Clarkson thing.

    At least I hope he did.

    I know his verbal about Ference is all positive, but he knows hockey and has to see that Ference is slotted above his established NHL ability.

    He has to see that is true about Fraser on the 3rd pairing too.

    If MacT makes some suspect signings like Jones, Fraser, then the hope is severley diminished.

    I think the rookie GM learned a lot in his first year.

    I hope he learned enough to avoid big mistakes this summer.

    Getting rid of a play driver without one coming back, failing to address the D and C or signing a suspect older player for too long term would all be bad.

  27. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy: They Oilers do need to win more battles and I am glad they are trying to target players that do without worrying about their “toughness”

    This is of a piece with Eakins other recent comment about SJS being not simply “heavy” but “heady”

    If this part of the brain (heady/win battles) wins out over the other part (heavy/toughness), we’ll be in good shape.

    More than likely we will not be able to make a clear accounting of the decision making as it is bound to be a little from column a and a little from column b… muddled.

  28. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1: To be fair, some of it is utter incompetence rather than malevolence.

    Yes.

  29. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    LMHF#1: Problem – Eakins thinks that Andrew Ference does these things.

    He does, if you put him on the 3rd pairing. The problem with Ference isn’t his performance, it’s where he is in the lineup and his contract.

  30. Caramel Obvious says:

    It sounds crazy but I like the idea of trading for Clarkson. Here’s why:

    1) Clarkson is being buried this year by defensive zone starts and bad puck luck. He has a track record of being a good possession player and scoring. If you ignore the contract he is the perfect bounce back candidate.

    2) Of course you can’t ignore the contract. It’s terrible. However, precisely because it is terrible the Leafs are going to want to get rid of it. At this point everyone knows the contract has negative value. That means the Leafs will pay the Oilers in players and money to take it off their hands.

    3) The amount of money only matters for a cap team but there is no way for the Oilers to be a capteam without overpaying for players. If the Oilers are going to overpay for players anyway they might as well get something extra for the privilege.

    4) So if you trade for Clarkson you don’t just get him you also get whatever the Leafs are willing to let go along with him. If that’s someone like Gardiner you have to jump on it.

    Under those conditions a trade for Clarkson could be very, very, good.

  31. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1: Problem – Eakins thinks that Andrew Ference does these things.

    I think Ference can do those things as a 2nd good player on the 2nd pairing or on the 3rd pairing.

    Problem is that is in neither of those situations.

  32. Woodguy says:

    And Rom posts the same response as I was typing mine.

    Well done sir!

  33. TheOtherJohn says:

    MAcT/Eakins give good pressers. They do. And then they sign/tradefor/play: Acton.RHamilton, Joensuu, Smac, Gadzic, RJones, Fraser, Grebeshkov

    There is a disconnect between what they say and what they do.

    I certainly hope they add some veteran players that can win battles in the conference (not fights) because WE ARE 29TH. I’d say again but in fairness that was 2 years ago

    Any chance the veteran players that “can win battles in conference” means adding guys like Horcoff, Hemsky, Smid to our roster?

  34. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    It sounds crazy but I like the idea of trading for Clarkson.Here’s why:

    1) Clarkson is being buried this year by defensive zone starts and bad puck luck.He has a track record of being a good possession player and scoring.If you ignore the contract he is the perfect bounce back candidate.

    2) Of course you can’t ignore the contract.It’s terrible.However, precisely because it is terrible the Leafs are going to want to get rid of it.At this point everyone knows the contract has negative value.That means the Leafs will pay the Oilers in players and money to take it off their hands.

    3) The amount of money only matters for a cap team but there is no way for the Oilers to be a capteam without overpaying for players.If the Oilers are going to overpay for players anyway they might as well get something extra for the privilege.

    4) So if you trade for Clarkson you don’t just get him you also get whatever the Leafs are willing to let go along with him.If that’s someone like Gardiner you have to jump on it.

    Under those conditions a trade for Clarkson could be very, very, good.

    My question is who goes?

    The obvious answer is Gagner. But Gagner doesn’t sound like a Nonis/Carlyle player to me and Gagner is perceived around the league by now as of limited value relative to his play and his contract.

    So maybe you are stuck sending Gagner for Clarkson in a straight swap… well, that’s not going to be a deal you win. Age alone tells you, you are going to lose that trade.

    But, Gagner probably isn’t valued enough on the market to get you more than a 4th liner (Clifford) and parts; a bad contract; or picks.

  35. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy:
    And Rom posts the same response as I was typing mine.

    Well done sir!

    Ha!

    Let’s try and see where he can go:

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=568&withagainst=true&season=2013-14&sit=5v5

    if they add say Markov/Coburn and Niskanen/Nikitin

    it goes something like

    Markov/Coburn – Niskanen/Nikitin
    Marincin – Petry
    Ference – Schultz

    does that seem right? The WOWY for Ference/Schultz isn’t that impressive, but Ference isn’t impressive with anyone but Larsen (together around 100mins).

    Mind, Ference/Schultz have been playing way, way, way above their heads. move them down to 3rd pairing and it could work

  36. oliveoilers says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Lowetide,

    Yeah, I just chucked that name out as ‘devil’s advocate’. Interesting point about to whom we give a ‘cup of coffee’ to and who just gets a sip. I like that we seem to be giving Lander a decent shot, but in the past (no names spring to mind, but I will dig) it’s been kind of a one to two game and if you don’t score a hattrick/post a shutout, then see ya.

    Now, seeing as the organisation sees these guys an awful lot more than us in different environment such as training and even socialising, why are some players given more of a shot than others? Prejudices, biases/ Confirmation of scouting reports? Old style ‘seen him good/bad? Or perhaps just a victim of right player at wrong time; we just don’t need what he’s selling at the moment.

  37. Ducey says:

    su_dhillon:
    I am having an increasingly difficult time believing any verbal that Eakins & MacT think making this team into a procession team is the way to win at least not in the way those who believe in analytics do.When they see the Kings and Sharks they see the measurables, they see height weight as opposed to their CF%.I think it was Rom who brought up player usage by Eakins recently and for all the really smart things he can say and at times the credence he seems to give to analytics, his deployment of players doesn’t indicate the he believes those things.

    Archobello is the easiest and most obvious example, having a 4th line that gives you zero chance to be competitive but makes sure Gadzic is there for face punching every night, playing Mark Fraser game after game to the same very expected results, lets you know that they have a healthy appetite for that type of player.We will see more of them come this off season, probably slightly better players than the ones they replace but they will leave much better players on the market. I agree with LT about a guy like Clarkson and in fact I think there is a much better chance Clarkson is on this team next year than Kulemin, which sucks.

    Maybe you can tell me why Kulemin is better than Clarkson. When I look at the advanced stats they look almost identical:

    http://www.extraskater.com/team/toronto-maple-leafs/2013#player-usage-chart

  38. Caramel Obvious says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Gagner for Clarkson straight up was not what I had in mind.

    Gagner for Clarkson and Gardiner maybe, but I doubt that works for the Leafs unless they are trading Kadri elsewhere.

    However, after the Leafs miss the playoffs this year things are going to change. I think there is opportunity there.

    I was thinking something like Pitlick (who is useless) + draft pick for Clarkson and Gardiner. Now I doubt this happens because of silliness like we already have Gardiner in JSchultz. In which case I’d take Clarkson and Kadri which won’t happen so long as Gagner is on the roster.

    So it’s unlikely, but I would do it. If you got Clarkson and Kadri (say) for basically free and then traded Gagner for Clifford and Lindon Vey, your team is better off in the short term. Kadri is better than Gagner, Clarkson and Clifford don’t cost you any players, and the downside is pushed down the road. I think it’s worth it.

  39. oliveoilers says:

    Caramel Obvious,

    1) Clarkson is being buried this year by defensive zone starts and bad puck luck. He has a track record of being a good possession player and scoring. If you ignore the contract he is the perfect bounce back candidate.

    Bounce back candidate? $7m Cam Barker anyone? I like Perron type reclamation projects. Safer bet. Because if we take that contract with TO eating some of it and it doesn’t work….reward just isn’t enough to justify the risk.

  40. Woodguy says:

    su_dhillon,

    Agreed that the verbal hasn’t matched the actions as much as we have hoped.

    I know with the Arco thing its all about size.

    They look at their lack of size in the top 6 and just can’t wrap their heads around adding another under-sized forward.

    BOS let Sobatka get away for next to nothing. I wonder if it was for the same reason?

  41. LMHF#1 says:

    Woodguy: I think Ference can do those things as a 2nd good player on the 2nd pairing or on the 3rd pairing.

    Problem is that is in neither of those situations.

    I disagree, but that is a longstanding issue I’ve had with Ference going back to before he got to Edmonton. I don’t get the value of a “defensive defenseman” who can’t take his man in front of the net and doesn’t win corner battles. I could run a rather long loop tape of him standing in front of the net guarding no one or losing his man as the other team scores from just this season if I had the video chops for it.

    I hope I’m wrong and that he’ll up his game with an improved D next season – but I really doubt it.

  42. stoptheinsanity says:

    I still don’t get these people in Edmonton who keep crying about 8 years of misery.

    Yes, 06-07 sucked, but who was upset with 07-08? We missed the playoffs by 3 freaking points! We finished the year 6-3-1! That wasn’t a miserable or tough or even difficult time – it was an exciting time. It was an interesting time. It was a hopeful time.

    Hell, even 08-09 was looking great until the last 3 weeks of the season when we went 3-8. Up to that point we were 35-27-9 for 79 points in 71 games on pace for 91 points and a playoff spot (1 point behind 6th). If that finish had been 6-5 (6 of those final 8 losses were by 1 goal) we would have made the playoffs.

    That year Hemsky had 66 points in 72 games. Souray was our second leading scorer. Out of our top 10 scorers only 2 of them were minus players – Gagner at -1 and Cogliano at -6.

    Do people not remember the stretch that year where they went 10 games with only one regulation loss? We weren’t rebuilding then. We ACQUIRED Visnovsky. We ACQUIRED Cole.

    In 09-10 the first year of sucking hard at one point we were 15-13-4 for 34 points after 32 games. Not great, but not horrible either. In the final 49 games they only won 12 more times. Thats when the sucking started. December 15, 2009. Up until that point the Oilers were a playoff contending team.

    Also, it wasn’t because they decided to trade away veterans and rebuild. It was because they had shitty goaltending.

    Geezus get off the freaking 8 year thing. It hasn’t been 8 shitty ass, difficult, horrible, season.

    Stop trying to rewrite the Oilers history.

  43. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Ha!

    Let’s try and see where he can go:

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=568&withagainst=true&season=2013-14&sit=5v5

    if they add say Markov/Coburn and Niskanen/Nikitin

    it goes something like

    Markov/Coburn – Niskanen/Nikitin
    Marincin – Petry
    Ference – Schultz

    does that seem right? The WOWY for Ference/Schultz isn’t that impressive, but Ference isn’t impressive with anyone but Larsen (together around 100mins).

    Mind, Ference/Schultz have been playing way, way, way above their heads. move them down to 3rd pairing and it could work

    Something along those lines for sure.

    Nikitin is having a poor year playing 3rds.

    I know he had good results last year, but I’m not sold on him being able to handle toughs.

  44. Woodguy says:

    stoptheinsanity,

    Stop trying to rewrite the Oilers history.

    Hahahahahaha!!!!!!!!!!!

  45. frjohnk says:

    How much do late ( early) birthdays factor into drafting?

    Here are some late birthdays for this years draft looking at their 17 year old seasons.

    Leon Draisaitl born Oct 27, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 21 goals, 37 assists in 64 games. 0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Reinhart born Nov 6, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 35 goals 50 assists in 72 games. 1.18 Pts/G

    If Draisaitl was born just over a month earlier, with those numbers, is he a mid to late first round pick in 2013?

    If Reinhart was also born before that Sept 15th date, with those numbers, is he top 10 last year?

    For reference Nathan Mackinnon was born 6 weeks earlier than Draisaitl and had 32 goals 43 assists in 44 games last year. 1.7 Pts/G

    Here are a few early birthdates for this years draft.

    Aaron Ekblad born Feb 7, 1996
    His 17 year old season he scored 23 goals and 30 assists in 58 games. 0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Bennett born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 36 goals 55 assists in 57 games. 1.6 Pts/G

    Jake Virtanen born Aug 17, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 45 goals 26 assists in 71 games. 1 Pts/G

    Michael Dal Colle born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 39 goals 56 assists in 67 games. 1.42 Pts/G

    I think we are overvaluing some of the late birthdates, while undervaluing some of the early birthdates.

  46. Hammers says:

    One thing I didn’t like in that article is Eakins saying “when McT and I sit down to make decisions ” as so far what we have seen is Eakins recomending adding Acton , Hamilton & Fraser all 3 are failures in my opinion . I hope McT listens to what his coach says he needs but not the players he wants .

  47. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1: I disagree, but that is a longstanding issue I’ve had with Ference going back to before he got to Edmonton. I don’t get the value of a “defensive defenseman” who can’t take his man in front of the net and doesn’t win corner battles. I could run a rather long loop tape of him standing in front of the net guarding no one or losing his man as the other team scores from just this season if I had the video chops for it.

    I hope I’m wrong and that he’ll up his game with an improved D next season – but I really doubt it.

    I agree with you about over valuing defensive defensmen.

    This is a good post on it: http://nhlstatsandopinions.wordpress.com/2014/03/20/the-over-valuation-of-defensive-defensemen-in-the-nhl/

  48. rickithebear says:

    Woodguy: I know he had good results last year, but I’m not sold on him being able to handle toughs.

    He cannot!

  49. Woodguy says:

    LMHF#1,

    TIppett agrees with you too:

    “I’ll give you an example,” he said. “We had a player that was supposed to be a great, shut-down defenseman. He was supposedly the be-all, end-all of defensemen.

    But when you did a 10-game analysis of him, you found out he was defending all the time because he can’t move the puck.

    “Then we had another guy, who supposedly couldn’t defend a lick.

    Well, he was defending only 20 percent of the time because he’s making good plays out of our end.

    He may not be the strongest defender, but he’s only doing it 20 percent of the time. So the equation works out better the other way. I ended up trading the other defenseman.”

    Source: http://www.azcentral.com/sports/coyotes/articles/2012/04/06/20120406phoenix-coyotes-dave-tippett-perfect-fit.html#ixzz2wvVWK5J4

  50. Woodguy says:

    rickithebear: He cannot!

    Don’t sit on the fence Ricki, give us your opinion.

  51. Hammers says:

    stoptheinsanity:
    I still don’t get these people in Edmonton who keep crying about 8 years of misery.

    Yes, 06-07 sucked, but who was upset with 07-08? We missed the playoffs by 3 freaking points! We finished the year 6-3-1! That wasn’t a miserable or tough or even difficult time – it was an exciting time. It was an interesting time. It was a hopeful time.

    Hell, even 08-09 was looking great until the last 3 weeks of the season when we went 3-8. Up to that point we were 35-27-9 for 79 points in 71 games on pace for 91 points and a playoff spot (1 point behind 6th). If that finish had been 6-5 (6 of those final 8 losses were by 1 goal) we would have made the playoffs.

    That year Hemsky had 66 points in 72 games. Souray was our second leading scorer. Out of our top 10 scorers only 2 of them were minus players – Gagner at -1 and Cogliano at -6.

    Do people not remember the stretch that year where they went 10 games with only one regulation loss? We weren’t rebuilding then. We ACQUIRED Visnovsky. We ACQUIRED Cole.

    In 09-10 the first year of sucking hard at one point we were 15-13-4 for 34 points after 32 games. Not great, but not horrible either. In the final 49 games they only won 12 more times. Thats when the sucking started. December 15, 2009. Up until that point the Oilers were a playoff contending team.

    Also, it wasn’t because they decided to trade away veterans and rebuild. It was because they had shitty goaltending.

    Geezus get off the freaking 8 year thing. It hasn’t been 8 shitty ass, difficult, horrible, season.

    Stop trying to rewrite the Oilers history.

    A very good point . Problem is we all forget the how it happened and just remember we where out .

  52. Woodguy says:

    frjohnk,

    I think we are overvaluing some of the late birthdates, while undervaluing some of the early birthdates.

    Good stuff.

    That’s something the scouts always have to consider.

  53. Marcus Oilerius says:

    Eakins, 16:05 Practice Raw: “Some of them – just being honest- have been given opportunities here because of where we’re at in the standings, and where we’re at in the depth chart. And they have to understand that, that just because you played here a bit this year, doesn’t mean you’re just going to be on the team next year. You’re going to have to battle hard, and that’s why it’s important to show well down the stretch.

    The second part of this is, you can’t blame these young men who’ve been here one year for eight years of pain. And I want them to – and I do know they know this, they see it, they feel it, and their motivation has to be – hey, I’m going to be the guy that brings us out of this, I’m going to be part of the new group that, that changes how our fans look at our team, and how the rest of the league is going to watch us grow and move up in the standings.”

  54. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy: Something along those lines for sure.

    Nikitin is having a poor year playing 3rds.

    I know he had good results last year, but I’m not sold on him being able to handle toughs.

    I had him marked down as a 2nd pair… then decided against splitting up Marincin and Petry.

    He’s not ideal there… and he’s not my ideal pick up.

    I’d prefer Fayne (who I’ve mentioned before) or Niskanen…

    but the point is you need one of Markov and one of Fayne, Niskanen, Nikitin, Coburn… and then you can juggle your top 4 all you like as long as you have Ference/Schultz where they belong.

  55. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Gagner for Clarkson straight up was not what I had in mind.

    Gagner for Clarkson and Gardiner maybe, but I doubt that works for the Leafs unless they are trading Kadri elsewhere.

    However, after the Leafs miss the playoffs this year things are going to change.I think there is opportunity there.

    I was thinking something like Pitlick (who is useless) + draft pick for Clarkson and Gardiner.Now I doubt this happens because of silliness like we already have Gardiner in JSchultz.In which case I’d take Clarkson and Kadri which won’t happen so long as Gagner is on the roster.

    So it’s unlikely, but I would do it.If you got Clarkson and Kadri (say) for basically free and then traded Gagner for Clifford and Lindon Vey, your team is better off in the short term.Kadri is better than Gagner, Clarkson and Clifford don’t cost you any players, and the downside is pushed down the road.I think it’s worth it.

    Yea. I didn’t mean that was your trade idea… just what else is there? and then do they want Gagner and what’s he worth to them anyway… just thinking it all through.

  56. judgedrude says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: also, how is not wearing a neck guard a thing?

    He didn’t listen to his mother….

    https://twitter.com/tylerbunz/status/447750856285229056

  57. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    oliveoilers: it’s been kind of a one to two game and if you don’t score a hattrick/post a shutout, then see ya.

    I think in a lot of cases, see Phil Cornet

    http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=96367

    the 2 game spot isn’t so much a “let’s see if you can stick in the NHL” as a symbolic carrot to the entire minor system: this guy is playing really well and we want you all to think you’ve got a shot and results will be rewarded.

    The Davidson call-up at the beginning of the year has that feel to it also.

    Not so much evaluative as symbolic encouragement. Brossoit (though he’s a real prospect) up with the team is part of that too… a signal that they pay attn upstairs.

  58. Jon K says:

    frjohnk:
    How much do late ( early) birthdays factor into drafting?

    Here are some late birthdays for this years draft looking at their 17 year old seasons.

    Leon Draisaitl born Oct 27, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 21 goals, 37 assists in 64 games.0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Reinhart born Nov 6, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 35 goals 50 assists in 72 games.1.18 Pts/G

    If Draisaitl was born just over a month earlier, with those numbers, is he a mid to late first round pick in 2013?

    If Reinhart was alsoborn before that Sept 15th date, with those numbers, is he top 10 last year?

    For reference Nathan Mackinnon was born 6 weeks earlier than Draisaitl and had 32 goals 43 assists in 44 games last year.1.7 Pts/G

    Here are a few early birthdates for this years draft.

    Aaron Ekblad born Feb 7, 1996
    His 17 year old season he scored 23 goals and 30 assists in 58 games.0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Bennett born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 36 goals 55 assists in 57 games.1.6 Pts/G

    Jake Virtanen born Aug 17, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 45 goals 26 assists in 71 games. 1 Pts/G

    Michael Dal Colle born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 39 goals 56 assists in 67 games.1.42 Pts/G

    I think we are overvaluing some of the late birthdates, while undervaluing some of the early birthdates.

    I agree with this 100%. There are issues with Sam Bennett (smallish, takes too many penalties), but his scoring and age should place him above others. I suppose it depends on how scouts think he can translate his style of play to the NHL, taking into consideration his size.

    In any case, it seems again that we are looking at a weak draft at the top end. It must be, the Oilers are in contention for the top two picks again.

  59. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    frjohnk,

    date of birth is a huge concern at the draft. It’s the one big red flag I have about Draisaitl (and Reinhart for that matter).

    It is also (among other things) one of the reasons Barkov is a superior prospect to Monahan.

    It’s just something you have to factor in, though most scouting services (while obviously listing the vitals) don’t seem to take much account of it.

  60. LMHF#1 says:

    Woodguy:
    LMHF#1,

    TIppett agrees with you too:

    Good stuff all around WG. Thanks.

  61. OilClog says:

    Smid>Ference. Full Stop.

    What has Lander done so amazing as the 2nd line winger? Gross

    I have zero faith in Eakins ability to access talent.

  62. Rondo says:

    Jon K,

    You also have took look who he has been playing with. Some of these players would have had more or less points with different line mates

  63. rickithebear says:

    “We need to SUPPLEMENT this group with some veteran leadership, some guys who can MAKE PLAYS and guys who are going to WIN BATTLES in this conference.

    Supplement: something added to complete a thing, supply a deficiency, or reinforce or extend a whole.

    NOT

    Replace: to provide a substitute or equivalent in the place

    Make plays: Playmaker: A player in a sport with goals, who initiates offensive plays.
    Through pocession rettrieval or passing.

    Win Battles: strong one-on-one play and puck Management.

    Will be intresting to generate a viable list of players to add to:
    LW Hall; Perron
    C Gagner; RNH
    RW Eberle, Yakupov
    That is a LW; a C; a RW.

  64. barry.moore23 says:

    Guys, I’m afraid following the Oilers so closely is having an effect on my play here in the Sunday rec league but I can’t stop watching !!! Thank gord (as you say) there are no advanced stats measures at our rink :)

    B

  65. oliveoilers says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: I think in a lot of cases, see Phil Cornet

    http://www.hockeydb.com/ihdb/stats/pdisplay.php?pid=96367

    the 2 game spot isn’t so much a “let’s see if you can stick in the NHL” as a symbolic carrot to the entire minor system: this guy is playing really well and we want you all to think you’ve got a shot and results will be rewarded.

    The Davidson call-up at the beginning of the year has that feel to it also.

    Not so much evaluative as symbolic encouragement. Brossoit (though he’s a real prospect) up with the team is part of that too… a signal that they pay attn upstairs.

    I think it’s symbolic too, however from the other direction! If there’s pressure from within the organisation that a player deserves a shot, maybe this shuts them up?

    I was thinking along the lines of psychology also. Hockey players put their pants on the same as us, they’re human too. I my life, I’ve known people perfectly happy where they are. People turning down promotions, even though they are more than able to perform the tasks of the next rung up the ladder. Kind of a ‘Big Fish, Small Pond’ mentality, with them maybe a little too comfortable with their present situation. I know we’re talking about potentially millions of dollars difference, but that honestly doesn’t bother some people. What we have to remember is that what motivates me may not motivate you. And a little like ‘living through your kids’, your ambition shouldn’t be super-imposed on others because they just may not give a damn. Maybe we assume that because the player is physically capable, then he is mentally ready also. One of the most intelligent guys I know fails nearly every written exam he writes because they scare the crap out of him. He get thinking about he ramifications of failure, the anxiety builds until he feels physically sick. This is a guy that posts high 90% all year.

  66. russ99 says:

    OilClog:
    Smid>Ference. Full Stop.

    What has Lander done so amazing as the 2nd line winger? Gross

    I have zero faith in Eakins ability to access talent.

    Agree.

    Plus that “Craig and I have to sit down and make the right decisions for our hockey club to add and subtract what we need to do to move up in our conference” quote makes me extremely uneasy.

    Craig should be making the roster decisions here, not the in over his head rookie coach who already brought in useless players/Marlies Acton, Hamilton and Fraser.

  67. G Money says:

    Woodguy: I think Ference can do those things as a 2nd good player on the 2nd pairing or on the 3rd pairing.

    Problem is that is in neither of those situations.

    If the Oilers could sign any two of the options you mentioned e.g. Niskanen and Hainsey, it doesn’t give us a true top pairing BUT it does give us four legit NHL D, which should be enough to allow the forwards to keep their heads above water for 45 minutes a night.

    But the third pairing, given the way Klefbom is showing, might very well be Klefbom-Schultz and not Ference-Schultz.

    EyeGlow/60 and VO2max notwithstanding.

  68. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    OilClog:
    Smid>Ference. Full Stop.

    What has Lander done so amazing as the 2nd line winger? Gross

    I have zero faith in Eakins ability to access talent.

    I think it is debatable about Smid and Ference. Ference appears to have better puck handling skills. Smid was certainly more adept at the classic defenders defensemen stuff.

    The age is in Smid’s favor, mind.

    What’s your complaint about Lander? He’s clearly where he is as an evaluative gesture and he’s looked fine IMO.

    Eakins hasn’t said anything like “Lander is a top 6 NHL forward”

  69. stevezie says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Having floated this idea myself, I see it as, “I’m willing to take the Clarkson contract if you make it worth my while” more than a hockey trade. There’s room for negotiation, but I see it much more along the lines of CO’s sending out picks and middling prospects for Clarkson and a sweetner than anything involving someone like Gagner.

    I though Godo had a good point yesterday about Clarkson being a cycle specialist. In the precious few New Jersey games I watched he seemed really good at creating his own shots, even with middling linemates, and cleaning up the garbage. This year his shot totals have plummeted, and I agree with Dellow that that is so unusual it must have something to do with systems. Not everyone can be good on every team.

    oliveoilers,

    Well, come on, Clarkson has done a lot more than Barker ever did.

    Your basic point is right- the whole point of taking flyers.reclamation projects is they’re cheap and low-risk, but no one is advocating just taking Clarkson. We’re saying we’ll take Clarkson IF you give us Gardiner to do it. That mitigates the risk. I think it makes it worth our while.

    The Leafs guys on twitter all seem pretty convinced Peter Holland is the real deal too, and management doesn’t seem to feel the same. I’d investigate that too.

  70. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    russ99: Agree.

    Plus that “Craig and I have to sit down and make the right decisions for our hockey club to add and subtract what we need to do to move up in our conference” quote makes me extremely uneasy.

    Craig should be making the roster decisions here, not the in over his head rookie coach who already brought in useless players/Marlies Acton, Hamilton and Fraser.

    If you think GMs make decisions without consulting their coaches you aren’t going to get very far analyzing hockey.

    As much as we enjoy the delusion of being some master of our own domain, decisions are rarely taken without advice and collaboration. Why we would pretend that is valuable is beyond me.

  71. stevezie says:

    G Money,

    I haven’t been able to see many games lately (and I’m not going to fight to watch us lose to San Jose) so Klefbom is still largely a mystery to me. He’s been good you say?

    I agree with you that though the defencemen we need doesn’t seem to available (via UFA) this summer, we’re still better off taking what improvements are available than sitting on our hands. Signing guys can double as signing trade assets. Niskanen might not be a true number one, but his presence allows us to include Petry in the inevitable Weber trade and still call it progress.

    I’m only sort of kidding.

  72. stevezie says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    Jimmy Carter said he’d call Nixon for advice all the time, so yeah, I assume the GM takes the coaches calls, especially since he’d be stupid not to.

  73. denny33 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    He does, if you put him on the 3rd pairing. The problem with Ference isn’t his performance, it’s where he is in the lineup and his contract.
    ********************************************************************************

    Interesting…..the question for me is – do you think Craig signed him with the intention of him being a
    3rd pairing D-man making 3.2 mill for 4 years?

    I suspect – could be wrong – they thought they were getting a legitimate 2nd paring guy…

  74. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    denny33:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    He does, if you put him on the 3rd pairing. The problem with Ference isn’t his performance, it’s where he is in the lineup and his contract.
    ********************************************************************************

    Interesting…..the question for me is– do you think Craig signed him with the intention of him being a
    3rd pairing D-man making 3.2 mill for 4 years?

    I suspect – could be wrong – they thought they were getting a legitimate 2nd paring guy…

    I think he signed him to play 2nd pairing with Justin.

    I don’t think either Justin or Ference can handle 2nd pairing without a big help, ie., someone a lot better than each other.

    If you put either with a really strong number 3, they may be able to handle #4 duties. This is basically what Ference had in BOS.

    The contract is what it is for “intangibles laced veteran on the UFA market”… it sucks… but at least he’s still NHL caliber. Nick wasn’t anymore.

  75. denny33 says:

    stoptheinsanity,

    Thanks Kevin….

  76. rickithebear says:

    Jon K: I agree with this 100%. There are issues with Sam Bennett (smallish, takes too many penalties), but his scoring and age should place him above others. I suppose it depends on how scouts think he can translate his style of play to the NHL, taking into consideration his size.

    In any case, it seems again that we are looking at a weak draft at the top end. It must be, the Oilers are in contention for the top two picks again.

    Sept 20 1995 is expected to be 50% of CHL PPG rate at age 22 in NHL.
    Aug 12 1996 is expected to be 75% of CHL PPG rate at age 22 in NHL

    NHLE in Draft year does not factor for age.

    Draisaitl End Oct 95 53% of PPG rate
    1.64 PPG X .53 = .87PPG X 82gm = 71PT
    But then you have to look at there EV pt productionas a % of overall.
    44 evpoints 27PP
    Often players get a heavy PP push so i like to expect a .Max of 40% of Even production.
    I would expect a 60 to 65 pt player best case.

    Sam bennett mid june 96 68%
    1.6 X .68 = 1.09 PPG X 82 = 89PT
    29/91pt from Pp 31.9%
    60 EVpt 29 PP

    have to look at % of points from G.
    knowledge of TOI for each would modify the numbers.

    A cup winner is going to have Quality EVG players.

    Del colle mid june 96 68%
    1.42 X .68 = .96PPG X82 = 79pt
    43/95pt PP 45.3%
    42 EVP
    56 to 60 pt player best case.

  77. frjohnk says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    frjohnk,

    date of birth is a huge concern at the draft. It’s the one big red flag I have about Draisaitl (and Reinhart for that matter).

    It is also (among other things) one of the reasons Barkov is a superior prospect to Monahan.

    It’s just something you have to factor in, though most scouting services (while obviously listing the vitals) don’t seem to take much account of it.

    While Draisaitl and Reinhart will be good players, I just wonder if Bennett will become the gem of this draft. But I don’t think the oilers are too thrilled in having two top centers at average size.

    Whoever they pick, I hope he goes back to junior next year. My wish is that they trade the pick for an impact player now, but Im not sure they get the value back.

  78. speeds says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: He does, if you put him on the 3rd pairing. The problem with Ference isn’t his performance, it’s where he is in the lineup and his contract.

    The other problem is, if properly slotted as a 3rd pair, MAYBE a 2nd pair LD if with a strong enough partner, he still takes up the lineup spot that would ideally go to a developing D like a Marincin, Nurse, or Klefbom.

    Not to mention that even if Ference can play that role now, that is no guarantee he can perform in that role for years 2-4 of his contract.

  79. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    speeds: The other problem is, if properly slotted as a 3rd pair, MAYBE a 2nd pair LD if with a strong enough partner, he still takes up the lineup spot that would ideally go to a developing D like a Marincin, Nurse, or Klefbom.

    Not to mention that even if Ference can play that role now, that is no guarantee he can perform in that role for years 2-4 of his contract.

    Yep. big concern is that because he his down roster he pushes people up, or himself.

    And, the last 2 years of his contract will be buyout time. Next year, I think he’ll be fine. but when the reaper comes for a D-man… it’s over. see: Nick.

    more cowbell?

  80. rickithebear says:

    Rob Schremp;Early July 695
    1.2ppg X.69 =.83ppg X 82 = 68 points
    47/75pt on PP 62.6% of pt from PP.
    26 even point player.
    would expect a 35 to 40 pt player best case.

  81. denny33 says:

    TheOtherJohn,

    MAcT/Eakins give good pressers. They do. And then they sign/tradefor/play: Acton.RHamilton, Joensuu, Smac, Gadzic, RJones, Fraser, Grebeshkov

    There is a disconnect between what they say and what they do.

    *********************************************************************************

    Like the US mainstream media’s response to the Barack Obama run for presidency ( some of them had tingling sensations listening to Barack ) Or crowds to the Beatles concerts.

    The pressers by Oiler employees really does it for some people.

    I agree – like Barack Obama – I see a **big** disconnect between what they say and do….

    If you paid some GM’s millions and millions of dollars – they wouldn’t let Fraser play on their farm team…..but hey – we are taking a look at him.

  82. Woodguy says:

    russ99: Agree.

    Plus that “Craig and I have to sit down and make the right decisions for our hockey club to add and subtract what we need to do to move up in our conference” quote makes me extremely uneasy.

    Craig should be making the roster decisions here, not the in over his head rookie coach who already brought in useless players/Marlies Acton, Hamilton and Fraser.

    Coaches are used as a player evaluation resource by NHL GMs.

  83. Woodguy says:

    speeds: The other problem is, if properly slotted as a 3rd pair, MAYBE a 2nd pair LD if with a strong enough partner, he still takes up the lineup spot that would ideally go to a developing D like a Marincin, Nurse, or Klefbom.

    Not to mention that even if Ference can play that role now, that is no guarantee he can perform in that role for years 2-4 of his contract.

    I have no problem sending Nurse back to junior and Klef starting in the A or being slotted at 7D is that is where they slot in the line up based on ability.

    Gifting NHL roster spots to kids is a key reason why they have finished 30,30,39,24,29ish

  84. Woodguy says:

    G Money: If the Oilers could sign any two of the options you mentioned e.g. Niskanen and Hainsey, it doesn’t give us a true top pairing BUT it does give us four legit NHL D, which should be enough to allow the forwards to keep their heads above water for 45 minutes a night.

    But the third pairing, given the way Klefbom is showing, might very well be Klefbom-Schultz and not Ference-Schultz.

    EyeGlow/60 and VO2max notwithstanding.

    I’m holding out hope they’ll slot Ference at 3LD based on ability.

    I have no hope that he’ll be the 7D. I can’t see them doing that at all, even if its deserved.

  85. misfit says:

    I’m still not convinced the Leafs are as desperate to rid themselves of Clarkson’s contract as their fans are, but if we can get him in a deal for prospects with Toronto retaining a portion of the contract, I’d be all for it.

    Clarkson, despite his contract and boxcars, is still a very useful player who can play on just about any line. He’s been abused with zone-starts (not quite as bad as McClement) and is the only blue bubble anywhere near the Leafs’ top left quadrant.

    He nearly signed here in the offseason, so I’d imagine he’d waive his NTC to come if the Leafs wanted him gone, and it gives MacT a way to add a useful NHL player for next to nothing. The Hendricks deal shows that MacTavish’s is willing to circle back to players he had interest in before, and there was definitely a lot of interest from him on Clarkson in the offseason, so I’d have to think he would look at a trade for Clarkson if he was available, I’m just not so sure there’s interest on the Leafs’ end.

  86. rickithebear says:

    Sam Rheinhart mid Nov 53%
    1.75ppg x .63 = .9275 = 76pt
    47 EVP
    would expect a 64-68 pt player.

  87. frjohnk says:

    I wonder if the oilers have tunnel vision with Draisaitl’s size and are overlooking the fact that he has used up more of his development time than someone like Bennett because of his late birthday

    Sean Couturier was a late birthday like Draisaitl and put 1.65 pts/ G in his draft year. Draisaitl has put up 1.64 Pts/ G this year. While Couturier is gonna be a great two way center in this league, he does not look to be an offensive force. Maybe he tops out at 60 points. Draisaitl has not shown he is a shutdown center. Yet, anyways.

    Does Draisaitl top out at 60 points and maybe become a great number 2 center down the road?

    Along with his first step quickness, I have some reservations about Draisaitl.

  88. frjohnk says:

    rickithebear:
    Sam Rheinhartmid Nov 53%
    1.75ppg x .63 = .9275 = 76pt
    47 EVP
    would expect a 64-68 pt player.

    Thanks, good stuff

  89. Woodguy says:

    stevezie:
    G Money,

    I haven’t been able to see many games lately (and I’m not going to fight to watch us lose to San Jose) so Klefbom is still largely a mystery to me. He’s been good you say?

    I agree with you that though the defencemen we need doesn’t seem to available(via UFA) this summer, we’re still better off taking what improvements are available than sitting on our hands. Signing guys can double as signing trade assets. Niskanen might not be a true number one, but his presence allows us to include Petry in the inevitable Weber trade and still call it progress.

    I’m only sort of kidding.

    Klef is certainly still a rookie and looks it but does a few thing very well.

    He wins a puck battle and skates the puck to safer ice to make a good first pass instead of mindlessly banging it off the glass.

    He eats the puck when going into a corner for a loose puck when he doesn’t have a good option to chip to, then wins the battle and skates the puck away from danger.

    He does better than almost all the current Oiler D.

    My biggest pet peeve with Jultz is unwillingness to eat the puck, battle/wait for help when going into a corner for a loose puck.

    He blindly chips it up the boards far, far, far too often and loses possession.

    I think in a year he probably passes Ference in terms of all around reliability.

    He still does a lot of rookie things, but most of that is decision making, not play execution.

    His decision making will catch up to his ability soon enough once he gets used to the NHL.

  90. Mr DeBakey says:

    From that Tippet article:
    ” When he’s watching tape or scouting opponents on television, he does so with the sound muted, so he’s not exposed to conventional hockey wisdom.”

    The more you listen to the broadcast crew, the less you understand about what is going on in the game.

  91. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    frjohnk:
    I wonder if the oilers have tunnel vision with Draisaitl’s size and are overlooking the fact that he has used up more of his development time than someone like Bennett because of his late birthday

    Sean Couturier was a late birthday like Draisaitl and put 1.65 pts/ G in his draft year.Draisaitl has put up 1.64 Pts/ G this year.While Couturier is gonna be a great two way center in this league, he does not look to be an offensive force.Maybe he tops out at 60 points.Draisaitl has not shown he is a shutdown center. Yet, anyways.

    Does Draisaitl top out at 60 points and maybe become a great number 2 center down the road?

    Along with his first step quickness, I have some reservations about Draisaitl.

    I certainly hope they are paying attn. to birthday. And, any healthy skepticism is a good thing.

    But, I’m not sure where you are getting this “shutdown center” business?

    We have to be careful with these words as they are usually reserved as euphemisms for not the best players, i.e. Gordon is a shutdown center. Lander might be.

    When you are picking in the top 4, you don’t want a shutdown center. You want a guy that can outscore top opposition, not break even, or only lose marginally, against it.

    Couter’s current role is more about usage and youth than it is about his offensive prowess. Though he probably won’t be an offensive juggernaut.

  92. Caramel Obvious says:

    For what it’s worth Klefbom’s fenwick is 44% with a zone start of 38%, playing with the worst players against the worst players.

    In depressing news the six best Fenwick % on the team are all players no longer on the team. That includes sample size guys like Omark, Eager, and Grebeshkov but also Arcobello, Fedun, and Hemsky.

    Hemsky is a big loss and Arcobello, Fedun, and Larsen are missed opportunities. I’m not as critical of the MacT/Eakins combo as most but I wish those four were still on the team.

  93. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Caramel Obvious,

    Hemsky was a big loss. Chalk that up to MacT’s “new look” idea.

    Fedun and Arco appear to be let’s keep the OKC Barons afloat ideas (or injured) at the moment. I can live with that. The real curio was earlier in the year, when Arco was scratched for Gazdic… Belov for Nick, etc.

    what’s your take on Larsen?

  94. speeds says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    Caramel Obvious,

    Hemsky was a big loss. Chalk that up to MacT’s “new look” idea.

    Fedun and Arco appear to be let’s keep the OKC Barons afloat ideas (or injured) at the moment. I can live with that. The real curio was earlier in the year, when Arco was scratched for Gazdic… Belov for Nick, etc.

    what’s your take on Larsen?

    That’s an interesting narrative, but who knows if it’s true? If it is true, why doesn’t it apply to Marincin or Klefbom, would they not help OKC? I get the idea that they are seen as more a part of the future (I’m not saying Arco would or should be viewed as a building block, but I can see a reasonable argument for looking at him as part of the 10-14F makeup for the next couple seasons anyways) , but there’s no reason they couldn’t still be a part of the future while also playing in OKC if it were such a huge organizational goal to make the AHL playoffs.

  95. Caramel Obvious says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I like Larsen and have since training camp. His Fenwick is good (for this team) though he’s gotten the zone start push. He’s played mid range competition without help as well.

    I don’t think he’s a star but I do think he’s an NHL player on a team without enough of them. And he’s still young.

  96. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    speeds: That’s an interesting narrative, but who knows if it’s true? If it is true, why doesn’t it apply to Marincin or Klefbom, would they not help OKC?I get the idea that they are seen as more a part of the future (I’m not saying Arco would or should be viewed as a building block, but I can see a reasonable argument for looking at him as part of the 10-14F makeup for the next couple seasons anyways) , but there’s no reason they couldn’t still be a part of the future while also playing in OKC if it were such a huge organizational goal to make the AHL playoffs.

    these don’t have to be one or the other ideas.

    Also, they have a large NHL sample size on Arco. I’m not sure if they feel they need to evaluate him further.

  97. OilClog says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: I think it is debatable about Smid and Ference. Ference appears to have better puck handling skills. Smid was certainly more adept at the classic defenders defensemen stuff.

    The age is in Smid’s favor, mind.

    What’s your complaint about Lander? He’s clearly where he is as an evaluative gesture and he’s looked fine IMO.

    Eakins hasn’t said anything like “Lander is a top 6 NHL forward”

    He’s playing Lander as a top 6 forward, Lander still isn’t delivering as a top 6 forward. Lander will never be a top 6 forward especially as a winger!

    He hasn’t done what’s needed on that second line, as it’s winger. It’s not his fault, the coach is playing him above his head and out of position. Yet this is cool I guess.

    Smid is better then Ference as of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

  98. frjohnk says:

    RE: Arcobello.

    There are two reasons why Jones is in the NHL and Arcobello isn’t.

    Jones is Taller and heavier. Because by every other stat and metric shows Arcobello is better.

  99. speeds says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: these don’t have to be one or the other ideas.

    Also, they have a large NHL sample size on Arco. I’m not sure if they feel they need to evaluate him further.

    For sure. I’m not claiming to know exactly why they’ve made the roster decisions they’ve made – I remain unsure why Arco was sent down, but perhaps I’m just a bigger fan of Arco than is warranted? It’s certainly possible they sent him down with an eye on helping OKC, while also thinking they didn’t think he was a fit, for whatever reason, on the current EDM roster.

    *edit to add* They don’t have a large sample size on Arcobello, he hasn’t played that many NHL games.

  100. FastOil says:

    frjohnk:
    How much do late ( early) birthdays factor into drafting?

    Here are some late birthdays for this years draft looking at their 17 year old seasons.

    Leon Draisaitl born Oct 27, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 21 goals, 37 assists in 64 games.0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Reinhart born Nov 6, 1995
    His 17 year old season he posted 35 goals 50 assists in 72 games.1.18 Pts/G

    If Draisaitl was born just over a month earlier, with those numbers, is he a mid to late first round pick in 2013?

    If Reinhart was alsoborn before that Sept 15th date, with those numbers, is he top 10 last year?

    For reference Nathan Mackinnon was born 6 weeks earlier than Draisaitl and had 32 goals 43 assists in 44 games last year.1.7 Pts/G

    Here are a few early birthdates for this years draft.

    Aaron Ekblad born Feb 7, 1996
    His 17 year old season he scored 23 goals and 30 assists in 58 games.0.91 Pts/G

    Sam Bennett born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 36 goals 55 assists in 57 games.1.6 Pts/G

    Jake Virtanen born Aug 17, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 45 goals 26 assists in 71 games. 1 Pts/G

    Michael Dal Colle born June 20, 1996
    His 17 year old season he posted 39 goals 56 assists in 67 games.1.42 Pts/G

    I think we are overvaluing some of the late birthdates, while undervaluing some of the early birthdates.

    Good you brought that up. I haven’t seen it mentioned much this year and it was at the forefront of discussion previous years. I think Bennett might be the best offensive player. He will likely be a 6 ft 190-195 pound player in the NHL once he fills out. Mike Richards sized more or less, big enough with the grit he has.

    Lady luck winks at MacT, Ekblad falls to the Oilers and MacT moves Gagner for the pick that drafts Bennett. Eberle goes for the top D, they sign another and a winger or to and BAM ……………

  101. FastOil says:

    As for Nikitin and Tyutin, I read a piece regarding the Russians at the Olympics and I agree with the take on the D. The Oilers don’t need offense as much as efficient, clean play from the back end. No more sloppy chaos for me thanks:

    http://blogs.thescore.com/nhl/2014/02/19/lack-of-top-end-talent-on-the-back-end-killed-russias-olympic-dreams/#more-89623

  102. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    OilClog: He’s playing Lander as a top 6 forward, Lander still isn’t delivering as a top 6 forward. Lander will never be a top 6 forward especially as a winger!

    He hasn’t done what’s needed on that second line, as it’s winger. It’s not his fault, the coach is playing him above his head and out of position. Yet this is cool I guess.

    Smid is better then Ference as of yesterday, today and tomorrow.

    It seems pretty clear to everyone but you why Lander is playing where he currently is.

    It looks to me that Lander is delivering as promised. He’s defensively responsible and but for a few bounces would have already cashed a few goals. He’s had bad puck luck, but hasn’t looked poor for playing too high up the lineup.

  103. Rondo says:

    Top 10 according to Redline as of March 2

    http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nhl/columnist/woodlief/2014/03/02/nhl-draft-red-line-report-defensemen/5952761/

    1 Aaron Ekblad D 6-3, 212 Right Feb. 7, 1996
    2 Leon Draisaitl C 6-1, 209 Left Oct. 27, 1995
    3 Sam Reinhart C 6-1, 182 Right Nov. 6, 1995
    4 Sam Bennett C 6-0, 178 Left June 20, 1996
    5 Michael dal Colle LW 6-2, 171 Left June 20, 1996
    6 William Nylander LW 5-10, 170 Right May 1, 1996
    7 Jake Virtanen LW 6-1, 203 Right Aug. 17, 1996
    8 Haydn Fleury D 6-3, 204 Left July 8, 1996
    9 Nick Ritchie LW 6-3, 232 Left Dec. 5, 1995
    10 Robby Fabbri C 5-10, 165 Right Jan. 22, 1996

  104. fifthcartel says:

    I hope if Buffalo goes Ekblad MacT isn’t afraid to take Reinhart instead of Leon or Bennett just because of size.

  105. russ99 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: If you think GMs make decisions without consulting their coaches you aren’t going to get very far analyzing hockey.

    As much as we enjoy the delusion of being some master of our own domain, decisions are rarely taken without advice and collaboration. Why we would pretend that is valuable is beyond me.

    Woodguy: Coaches are used as a player evaluation resource by NHL GMs.

    That’s fairly obvious, but the quote sure doesn’t sound like Eakins is taking a back seat. Maybe I should have put it differently.

    I don’t want to see the roster rebuilt the way Eakins wants, based both on his philosophy and track record both here and in Toronto.

    But I’d think MacTavish has more than enough experience as a coach and at all levels of the game to at least filter that input and build a well-rounded roster.

  106. OilClog says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: It seems pretty clear to everyone but you why Lander is playing where he currently is.

    It looks to me that Lander is delivering as promised. He’s defensively responsible and but for a few bounces would have already cashed a few goals. He’s had bad puck luck, but hasn’t looked poor for playing too high up the lineup.

    So you’re saying Lander is a successful second line winger, sure glad his numbers are better then that bum Yakupov.

    When/where will Lander ever be second line winger in the NHL other then Edmonton? The islanders? Buffalo? Where?

    Good grief

  107. OilClog says:

    russ99:
    That’s fairly obvious, but the quote sure doesn’t sound like Eakins is taking a back seat. Maybe I should have put it differently.

    I don’t want to see the roster rebuilt the way Eakins wants, based both on his philosophy and track record both here and in Toronto.

    But I’d think MacTavish has more than enough experience as a coach and at all levels of the game to at least filter that input and build a well-rounded roster.

    I have a feeling the guy that will go through a “wall” for Eakins will be here next training camp.

  108. OilClog says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: It seems pretty clear to everyone but you why Lander is playing where he currently is.

    It looks to me that Lander is delivering as promised. He’s defensively responsible and but for a few bounces would have already cashed a few goals. He’s had bad puck luck, but hasn’t looked poor for playing too high up the lineup.

    The whole team has looked poor, I don’t know what you’re watching but when I’m watching the Oilers play.. I don’t see much “good enough” from anyone.

    On a second line, you must score! Yet he does none of that in the NHL.

    Why.

    Because he’s not a damn second line winger!

  109. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    OilClog: So you’re saying Lander is a successful second line winger, sure glad his numbers are better then that bum Yakupov.

    When/where will Lander ever be second line winger in the NHL other then Edmonton? The islanders? Buffalo? Where?

    Good grief

    I don’t think you are reading my posts. This is the only conclusion I can reach.

    once more:

    He’s playing top 6 to give him a shot to show his stuff without lead weights like Gazdic on his ass.

    If you haven’t noticed, the season is long since shot. This isn’t about where he belongs long term.

    He’s not shooting the lights out and is never expected to score a ton. He just needs to keep his head above water (which he has) and score above the mendoza line (but for a bounce here or there he’s doing that… or don’t you acknowledge luck in your universe?)

    this is pretty straightforward. is anyone else confused by this?

  110. Caramel Obvious says:

    OilClog: So you’re saying Lander is a successful second line winger, sure glad his numbers are better then that bum Yakupov.

    When/where will Lander ever be second line winger in the NHL other then Edmonton? The islanders? Buffalo? Where?

    Good grief

    Good grief is how detached your posts are from reality. Lander hasn’t taken Yakupov’ spot on the second line. Yakupov is injured and Lander is being a given a small opportunity. I don’t see this as either complicated or controversial.

    If Lander were playing on the third or fourth line you’d be criticizing that too. It’s time to take a step back and engage in some self-reflection.

  111. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Ducey: His CF% is 42.9%. It was 61.2% with the Devils last year and 58.2% the year before.

    I’ve been looking at the same thing. Makes you wonder how much of CF% is on the individual player & how much is team-driven. This is a pretty extreme example, as are the types of team he left/joined.

  112. denny33 says:

    I believe this is a big part of the Oilers problem. We focus on D problems, but the center position has only Boyd Gordon in the group who can effectively play the man’s game required in the NHL. Nuge seems to be wearing down the season, and I do wonder if a healthy summer and a consistent workout program will help him increase strength. It isn’t really fair to criticize—Nuge gets to a lot more battles because of his ridiculous skating—but the past few weeks are the first time in his NHL career that I’ve actually worried about him.
    ********************************************************************
    Excellent point LT – we are very weak down the middle.

    Stamkos did it….Mark Scheifle has done it….Jacob Trouba just started.

    Time for RNH to consider visiting Garry Roberts…..

    **********************************************************************
    Kudos to WG’s proposal about trading Ebs for Couturier. First – it is a realistic price to pay for quality and secondly – it fixes a huge hole on our team.

    Not as keen to have Sam Gagner play wing – in the Western Conference….but I think you can make a strong case for Ebs for a Stud 2C.

    In fact, I think something along those lines will surely happen this summer. Either that or Ebs for a Stud 1st pairing D-man.

  113. oliveoilers says:

    denny33,

    “Kudos to WG’s proposal about trading Ebs for Couturier. First – it is a realistic price to pay for quality and secondly – it fixes a huge hole on our team.”

    Just listened to Hextall on OilersNow. He emphasised how happy they are with their mix of forwards. In other words, we have nothing they need. Sellers market…..

  114. sliderule says:

    The oilers have spoken about the problem with size throughout the lineup.

    If you look at the top goal six scoring forwards on the the top five scoring teams you find that they average at 200 lbs.The oilers top six goal scorers average around 192 lbs .The lightest team of the top five the hawks averages 197..There is no question that is a significant difference even measured against a so called possession team like Chicago.

    The oilers are currently 27 goals under the average for these teams and a full 40 below the Hawks.That means on average every one of our top six has to score 5 goals more to hit the average.

    This difference in scoring has to be addressed if the oilers are to be an elite team.You would have to think some of that will be addressed by maturity as they move towards their peak yeas.

    The problem of “heavyness” will be addressed to a certain extent as they mature but it probably requires tweaking if they are to move up in scoring and standings.

    The quandary in addressing size if you say move an Eberle for a Couturier plus something you are gaining size but losing scoring.

    When I started looking at this and saw how far off our top six are it changed my perception on the draft.I went from thinking Ekblad was the best answer to thinking they have to add a scoring centre of which there are three.

  115. denny33 says:

    oliveoilers,

    Just listened to Hextall on OilersNow. He emphasised how happy they are with their mix of forwards. In other words, we have nothing they need. Sellers market…..
    ************************************************************************
    No – I heard a similar speech on Winnipeg radio buy Ron Hextall.

    Size, can skate, playoff battle tested, selke nominee?…..I mean – Penguins rave about him. Hextall actually went on and on about Sean. Sure sounded like they were in love with him…

    Can’t imagine Philly letting him go – but I do think WG is onto the right price/concept. And they are deep at Centre.

    Do think Ebs scores 40 goals on that philly team as well sometime.

  116. Bruce McCurdy says:

    OilClog: So you’re saying Lander is a successful second line winger, sure glad his numbers are better then that bum Yakupov.

    Lander last 5 games (mostly w/ RNH/Eberle) 0-1-1, +1
    Yakupov last 5 games (mostly w/ RNH/Eberle) 0-0-0, -4

    Obviously way too small a sample size in both cases, but with Lander it’s all we’ve got. I for one am glad he’s getting a shot playing with guys not named Petrell, Eager, Brown, Jones, Joensuu & Gazdic. By eye he has been going to good spots and getting chances, but he needs to calm down a bit & start cashing those chances.

  117. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Matt Hendricks 42.6 Corsi for % 5×5, with a 26.9% zone start

    That ZS is actually a blended figure from Nashville + Edmonton. As a Pred it was something like 42%; as an Oiler, a ridonkulous 13.8%. Far to the left of even Gordon.

    I’m not overly fond of the Hendricks contract either, but have started to think of him in terms of being a cheap David Clarkson. I know the parallel is not perfect, but this year their numbers aren’t that far off (other than the ones with $$$ nearby).

    Some of my favourite moments from the Sharks game came when the Hendricks-Gordon-Pitlick were physically engaging the Sharks. Much of it was in the neutral zone and a lot of it was going nowhere fast, but it was give-and-take. Better, it rarely featured Sharks pouring over the Edmonton blueline with speed, numbers, and the puck.

    Not my favourite kind of hockey, but Gord damn it, you have to have some of that stuff in today’s NHL.

  118. oliveoilers says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Lander last 5 games (mostly w/ RNH/Eberle) 0-1-1, +1
    Yakupov last 5 games (mostly w/ RNH/Eberle) 0-0-0, -4

    Obviously way too small a sample size in both cases, but with Lander it’s all we’ve got. I for one am glad he’s getting a shot playing with guys not named Petrell, Eager, Brown, Jones, Joensuu & Gazdic. By eye he has been going to good spots and getting chances, but he needs to calm down a bit & start cashing those chances.

    I think the important thing about comparing Yak to Lander is the length of their sideburns!

    What I think the point is is: If Lander turns out to be the real deal at playing with skill, who does he displace? We tried Hemmer on the 3rd line. Look how that ultimately played out. I think it’s fair to say that the top 6 is fixed pending an inevitable trade for a coke machine with a horrible contract. (If he’s an ex-Marlie, even better.)

    So, back to playing in quicksand for Lander, unless he likes being top dog in the AHL. Too sweet for Peter, too sour for Paul.

  119. Rondo says:

    Central Scouting breaks down league lists.

    Without giving away the order, this is the closest thing you’ll get to a top 10 from each area at this point

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/blogpost.htm?id=27670&navid=nhl:topheads

  120. Lowetide says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    Matt Hendricks 42.6 Corsi for % 5×5, with a 26.9% zone start

    That ZS is actually a blended figure from Nashville + Edmonton. As a Pred it was something like 42%; as an Oiler, a ridonkulous 13.8%. Far to the left of even Gordon.

    I’m not overly fond of the Hendricks contract either, but have started to think of him in terms of being a cheap David Clarkson. I know the parallel is not perfect, but this year their numbers aren’t that far off (other than the ones with $$$ nearby).

    Some of my favourite moments from the Sharks game came when the Hendricks-Gordon-Pitlick were physically engaging the Sharks. Much of it was in the neutral zone and a lot of it was going nowhere fast, but it was give-and-take. Better, it rarely featured Sharks pouring over the Edmonton blueline with speed, numbers, and the puck.

    Not my favourite kind of hockey, but Gord damn it, you have to have some of that stuff in today’s NHL.

    Hendricks ZS being that low, I’m fine with his contract. Insane drastic.

  121. Lowetide says:

    oliveoilers:
    denny33,

    “Kudos to WG’s proposal about trading Ebs for Couturier. First – it is a realistic price to pay for quality and secondly – it fixes a huge hole on our team.”

    Just listened to Hextall on OilersNow.He emphasised how happy they are with their mix of forwards.In other words, we have nothing they need.Sellers market…..

    Beware of what people say in public.

  122. Ryan says:

    sliderule:

    The quandary in addressing size if you say move an Eberle for a Couturier plus something you are gaining size but losing scoring.

    There’s the rub. You’re always going to have to give up scoring to get size…. but the Oilers are 24th in the NHL in G/g, so it’s not like there’s a wealth of offense to trade for size.

  123. rich says:

    sliderule,

    Interesting argument Sliderule. There seems to be two camps of Oilers fans (without being overly general). Those who say we need more size/toughness up front and those who say that’s not the problem, but rather the issue is getting d-men capable of getting our forwards the pucks.

    First time I remembered this being an issue was in 2006-07 after Pronger left. MacT frequently got on his forwards about coming back into the zone to get the puck instead of waiting for the D to get it to them because we’d lost Pronger (and Spacek) and their ability to make that pass.

    Chicago doesn’t have the size/toughness up & down the line but they play a possession type game – and they have defense that get them the puck. It’s interesting that this year, they’ve struggled with St. Louis (up until beating them last week) because the Blues just have been trying to bully them (not my words – but Darren Pang’s I believe). In that game, Chicago had a couple of guys who stood up to Backes, Oshie, etc… and got a win (at the cost of Kane for a few weeks).

    I don’t know if there is any 1 answer here necessarily, but I do think that the Oilers lack on defense (making that first pass) and I also think the Oilers are struggling with whether they are going to be a possession team or a dump and cycle team.

  124. Ryan says:

    oliveoilers:
    What I think the point is is:If Lander turns out to be the real deal at playing with skill, who does he displace?

    No one. The idea with seeing if Lander can play with skill is just that… seeing if he can play with skill.

    Lander is looking for a jack of all trades roll on the Oilers–a guy who can move up and down the lineup and fill holes, play different positions and different roles. :)

    He’s not in the mix for full-time top six duty.

  125. spoiler says:

    hardcore: Lowetide,I have the same worry in terms of MacT and Eakins over commitment to adding toughness at the expense of real hockey skill. While moves like the Perron addition and the scrivens/fasth pickups have me dancing in the street, the narrative and recent actions around adding toughness just won’t seem to cool down to a reasonable level. Case in point – Eakin’s comments.Even more worrying are the things I’ve heard MacT say as recently as this past Monday at one of the oilers season ticket holder luncheons (the only reason I was able to attend was because one if my closest friends was nice enough to invite me along – he buys the tickets for a group of us who take as many games as we can over the year).It was a really eye opening experience and really cool thing the oilers do for season ticket holders.One of the first things I noticed was MacT’s uncanny willingness to offer up unsolicited thoughts about the team when responding to any and all questions. Maybe he was feeling an irresistible need to explain himself after the recent HNIC debacle against Calgary or maybe this is just MacT. I get the sense it’s more the latter to be honest but whatever the reason it provided a lot of tell type info that gave me a better sense of where he’s going in the off season. Here’s a rundown of what I heard with the caveat that I am often referred to by my wife as over thinking things.1. When asked about what the biggest need on the team was to be able to push the team to playoff contention, the first thing MacT mentioned was toughness. Not defense, not centre depth, not anything else – size and toughness. This despite the person asking the question offering up those and other options.MacT went on to talk about defense and did say in no uncertain terms they will be bringing I a veteran defenseman who can lead by example with smart play so that’s good. That said, the immediate talk of toughness was a real bummer way to kick off his Q&A.2. When asked about promising d – he couldn’t say enough good things about Nurse. He said he’d be cautious about bringing him in next season but that he sees this kid as everything that’s been advertised and more. He also seemed to talk more about the potential of klefbom than Marincin – his only real comment about the latter being that he’s seen thicker arms on a pair of glasses. He was also asked about all the other prospects and was really high on Dillon Simpson stating that they are working to get him signed as soon as possible.3. He’s uncomfortable with his 2nd line saying a couple times throughout the day – without really being asked – that the make up was off. He didn’t single out gags or anyone but obviously has fixing the second line on his to do list.4. Despite being critical of the fact that some nights yak plays 14 of his 16 minutes in our own end – he feels that it’s a failure of the way the team is playing more so than on him. He went to great lengths to express how he feels that with better team play yak will be making teams pay and spending more time where he belongs – in the oppositions end – in no time. He referenced Stamkos a lot through out the day in regards to yak and even nuge a bit.5. He wasn’t impressed with hall saying he wasn’t embarrassed by the events of Saturday night. I get the sense he really wants hall and the core to grab the leadership reins but realizes they still need veteran presence to learn what it really means to be committed to win night in and night out.6. Eakins isn’t going anywhere – MacT is a huge supporter and he’s here till MacT isn’t. End of story.7. When asked about the draft he talked about the players in this order – Ekblad, that German dris.. kid, and then Reinhardt. It’s one of the first two he mentioned – book it.That’s all I can remember for now – there was more but I think the first item about toughness provides a little credence to your comments today.Anyways, thanks for your relentless coverage of all things oil…glad I could contribute.HC

    This post isn’t getting a lot of love, so let me say thank you for the report and hopefully we hear from you again.

  126. FastOil says:

    denny33:
    oliveoilers,

    Just listened to Hextall on OilersNow. He emphasised how happy they are with their mix of forwards. In other words, we have nothing they need. Sellers market…..
    ************************************************************************
    No – I heard a similar speech on Winnipeg radio buy Ron Hextall.

    Size, can skate, playoff battle tested, selke nominee?…..I mean – Penguins rave about him. Hextall actually went on and on about Sean. Sure sounded like they were in love with him…

    Can’t imagine Philly letting him go – but I do think WG is onto the right price/concept. And they are deep at Centre.

    Do think Ebs scores 40 goals on that philly team as well sometime.

    Tire pumping before sale.

  127. HiddenDarts says:

    Bruce McCurdy: I’m not overly fond of the Hendricks contract either, but have started to think of him in terms of being a cheap David Clarkson. I know the parallel is not perfect, but this year their numbers aren’t that far off (other than the ones with $$$ nearby).

    This all day long and twice on Sundays. Let’s just not mention Clarkson’s name in conjunction with the Oilers again. He isn’t coming here. He isn’t coming here!

    I feel like if I repeat it, the Gords will listen.

  128. Ryan says:

    rich,

    The answer is both.

    As for size in the Oilers lineup, the COH boys IIRC found a great quote from Mact’s last season as an Oiler.

    In that quote, he lamented the fact that Oilers didn’t have the size to go to the tough areas to score, sustain a forecheck …

    You could use the exact quote to describe the Oilers today.

  129. oliveoilers says:

    Ryan,

    That would make Lander fine in my book! Players like that hold value. Pisani?

  130. Lowetide says:

    hardcore:
    Lowetide,
    I have the same worry in terms of MacT and Eakins over commitment to adding toughness at the expense of real hockey skill.While moves like the Perron addition and the scrivens/fasth pickups have me dancing in the street, the narrative and recent actions around adding toughness just won’t seem to cool down to a reasonable level. Case in point – Eakin’s comments.

    Even more worrying are the things I’ve heard MacT say as recently as this past Monday at one of the oilers season ticket holder luncheons (the only reason I was able to attend was because one if my closest friends was nice enough to invite me along – he buys the tickets for a group of us who take as many games as we can over the year).

    It was a really eye opening experience and really cool thing the oilers do for season ticket holders.

    One of the first things I noticed was MacT’s uncanny willingness to offer up unsolicited thoughts about the team when responding to any and all questions.Maybe he was feeling an irresistible need to explain himself after the recent HNIC debacle against Calgary or maybe this is just MacT. I get the sense it’s more the latter to be honest but whatever the reason it provided a lot of tell type info that gave me a better sense of where he’s going in the off season. Here’s a rundown of what I heard with the caveat that I am often referred to by my wife as over thinking things.

    1. When asked about what the biggest need on the team was to be able to push the team to playoff contention, the first thing MacT mentioned was toughness. Not defense, not centre depth, not anything else – size and toughness.This despite the person asking the question offering up those and other options.

    MacT went on to talk about defense and did say in no uncertain terms they will be bringing I a veteran defenseman who can lead by example with smart play so that’s good. That said, the immediate talk of toughness was a real bummer way to kick off his Q&A.

    2. When asked about promising d – he couldn’t say enough good things about Nurse.He said he’d be cautious about bringing him in next season but that he sees this kid as everything that’s been advertised and more. He also seemed to talk more about the potential of klefbom than Marincin – his only real comment about the latter being that he’s seen thicker arms on a pair of glasses.He was also asked about all the other prospects and was really high on Dillon Simpson stating that they are working to get him signed as soon as possible.

    3. He’s uncomfortable with his 2nd line saying a couple times throughout the day – without really being asked – that the make up was off. He didn’t single out gags or anyone but obviously has fixing the second line on his to do list.

    4. Despite being critical of the fact that some nights yak plays 14 of his 16 minutes in our own end – he feels that it’s a failure of the way the team is playing more so than on him.He went to great lengths to express how he feels that with better team play yak will be making teams pay and spending more time where he belongs – in the oppositions end – in no time.He referenced Stamkos a lot through out the day in regards to yak and even nuge a bit.

    5. He wasn’t impressed with hall saying he wasn’t embarrassed by the events of Saturday night.I get the sense he really wants hall and the core to grab the leadership reins but realizes they still need veteran presence to learn what it really means to be committedto win night in and night out.

    6. Eakins isn’t going anywhere – MacT is a huge supporter and he’s here till MacT isn’t. End of story.

    7. When asked about the draft he talked about the players in this order – Ekblad, that German dris.. kid, and then Reinhardt.It’s one of the first two he mentioned – book it.

    That’s all I can remember for now – there was more but I think the first item about toughness provides a little credence to your comments today.

    Anyways, thanks for your relentless coverage of all things oil…glad I could contribute.

    HC

    Awesome post, and I missed it. Thanks Hardcore, and spOILer for helping these old eyes find it!

  131. oliveoilers says:

    FastOil,

    Could be. But why move Couturier before Lecavalier? My point is, we would make that deal, but would they? Why would they? I see them with more interest in Yak, who a little more physical than Ebs. He would fit their team a better. Of course it would be Yak + and I’m not running him out of town. Just thinking out loud.

  132. FastOil says:

    After looking at GF through the league, Philly needs more offense to run with the big boys which you know they consider themselves. Eberle has about 20 pts on Couturier. Philly has centres, LT has said Voracek can play LW I believe. There is mutual benefit there. Especially for the Oilers.

  133. oliveoilers says:

    Lowetide: Awesome post, and I missed it. Thanks Hardcore, and spOILer for helping these old eyes find it!

    It was a good post! I swear, if we sign a $5m Gazdic clone, I’m cutting the games I watch to one a week! BTW, Clarkson with 10pts this year. For Fox Creek.

  134. Marcus Oilerius says:

    OilClog: He’s playing Lander as a top 6 forward, Lander still isn’t delivering as a top 6 forward. Lander will never be a top 6 forward especially as a winger!

    The season is lost. There are injuries. Now is the time to try prospects out, especially ones like Lander where you have to make an important decision on their contract status.

  135. Lowetide says:

    Bakersfield (ECHL)—owned by the Oilers—sign two Golden Bears.

    http://www.bakersfieldcondors.com/news/condors-sign-barteaux-and-joe/

  136. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: Hendricks ZS being that low, I’m fine with his contract. Insane drastic.

    Insane.

  137. Caramel Obvious says:

    oliveoilers:
    FastOil,

    Could be.But why move Couturier before Lecavalier?My point is, we would make that deal, but would they?Why would they?I see them with more interest in Yak, who a little more physical than Ebs.He would fit their team a better.Of course it would be Yak + and I’m not running him out of town.Just thinking out loud.

    When I suggested trading Eberle and Smid for Couturier and Coburn in the fall I was laughed out of the room. Now Eberle isn’t enough to get Couturier straight up. It’s interesting how fast perception changes.

  138. Bruce McCurdy says:

    rich: First time I remembered this being an issue was in 2006-07 after Pronger left. MacT frequently got on his forwards about coming back into the zone to get the puck instead of waiting for the D to get it to them because we’d lost Pronger (and Spacek) and their ability to make that pass.

    You make a good point, even as Pronger and Spacek were both just temporary solutions. But looking back before them came Brewer, Poti, Niinimaa, Mironov, all guys who could skate & move the puck, sometimes even simultaneously. Give or take 10 minutes of Lubo, closest thing we’ve had to any of those guys since ’07 was Tom “Blame” Gilbert, and you know where he wound up. Run out of town on the same rail as Poti.

  139. Oilanderp says:

    What I am about to type is unecessary but I will do it anyway just for the one person here who is still clinging to the old ways:

    There is not a single person in the universe who has watched an Oilers game who would disagree that the Oilers need more size. Where the disagreement arises is in the idea of acquiring size at the expense of hockey ability. YES we need size, but we need better hockey players FIRST. Get more of those please. Injecting hulkiniaks and mongotrons who can’t play hockey very well but are big is a fool’s errand and will result in being outshot, outscored, and outhockeyed. That’s the theory, and I think it’s a good one.

    I don’t want to be outhockeyed any more.

    Just for once I wish the powers that be would, given that the season is gone, ice the best CF% lineup possible with an eye on TotTm%QoC & TotTm%QoT and ignore all other factors.

    It would be my dream. I would love to see what happens!

  140. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: Marincin – his only real comment about the latter being that he’s seen thicker arms on a pair of glasses.

    MacT always had a way with one-liners. That one is awesome.

  141. rich says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    So you’re saying we have something to look forward to w/Klefbom as well as Petry?

    You just reminded though how much I miss Visnovsky. Too bad OTC ran him out of town.

  142. speeds says:

    Lowetide: Hendricks ZS being that low, I’m fine with his contract. Insane drastic.

    The issue wasn’t really Hendricks this year, it’s the contract going forward. It is true that if he’s a better player now than was thought at the time of the deal, there’s probably a decent chance he might be better in the later years than initially supposed, but that doesn’t mean he’s a given to be value in years 2-4 of the deal.

  143. VanOil says:

    Building on Hardcore’s excellent post and Eakin’s comments yesterday it is hard to parse exactly what MacT and Eakins mean by ‘toughness’. Dressing Fraser and Gadzook does not help.

    If we look at other parts of there comments maybe we can figure it out. First Eakins talking about the style of play in the West being a fierce cycle game followed be fierce puck retrieval. In contrast to the East’s skilled track meets. He did not see that changing any time soon. Oilers were good enough to break the cycle of the Eastern teams but not the West.

    Eakin’s followed this up by saying that being good for a kid was not good enough. MacT chimed in with Veteran D and changing the top 6 make up. (I love his expectations for Yak)

    Being a jaded Oilers fan (is there any other kind) I see massive UFA over pays for Dmen on there last legs and trades shipping out skill for size. 35 year old vets being sought after instead of 25 year old pro’s. My suspicion is Markov and Fayne for way to much money and term. Followed by a Clarkson trade.

    When not being so jaded I think Schultz might be an excellent asset to trade. He still has incredible promise as a offensive Dman but ‘cycle breaker’ does not seem to be his forte.

    While not a ‘Vet’ I think a Schultz for Kulikov and a 2nd makes sense with the East v. West style of play. As always Gagner for Brock Nelson also makes sense with bringing Malhotra in as a 4th line draw specialist to help the young C’s out.

    What does ‘Vet” and ‘Toughness’ mean to MacT and does it mean the same thing to Eakins? I see the holes in the Oilers line ups being 25 to 30 year old possession players, do they see the holes as 30-35 year old knuckle draggers?

  144. oliveoilers says:

    Caramel Obvious: When I suggested trading Eberle and Smid for Couturier and Coburn in the fall I was laughed out of the room.Now Eberle isn’t enough to get Couturier straight up.It’s interesting how fast perception changes.

    That isn’t what I said, and I know you’re intelligent enough to know this. What I meant, for clarification, is that Philly is in the position where they can trade for luxuries such as an Eberle. But why would they? That is what FastOil and I were discussing. I even posted as much: “My point is, we would make that deal, but would they?” Do you even read the posts before unleashing the fury?

    It is well known that Edmonton has it’s list of untouchables. On a 29th place team. Is it such a leap of logic that other teams also have their own list?

    Perception, when under the scrutiny of the media and the public is extremely important.

  145. Caramel Obvious says:

    oliveoilers,

    I wasn’t referring to you specifically rather to the phenomenon. There was a time when the perception was that Couturier wasn’t enough in exchange for Eberle. That perception has reversed and the window, if there ever was one, has closed.

    You need to get Couturier before the perception catches up to reality. If you wait until they are a sure thing then you need to pay sure thing prices. Same thing with Subban. It was obvious what he was two years ago.

    The question that needs to be asked is who is the next Couturier.

  146. Andy P says:

    stoptheinsanity:
    I still don’t get these people in Edmonton who keep crying about 8 years of misery.

    Yes, 06-07 sucked, but who was upset with 07-08? We missed the playoffs by 3 freaking points! We finished the year 6-3-1! That wasn’t a miserable or tough or even difficult time – it was an exciting time. It was an interesting time. It was a hopeful time.

    Hell, even 08-09 was looking great until the last 3 weeks of the season when we went 3-8. Up to that point we were 35-27-9 for 79 points in 71 games on pace for 91 points and a playoff spot (1 point behind 6th). If that finish had been 6-5 (6 of those final 8 losses were by 1 goal) we would have made the playoffs.

    That year Hemsky had 66 points in 72 games. Souray was our second leading scorer. Out of our top 10 scorers only 2 of them were minus players – Gagner at -1 and Cogliano at -6.

    Do people not remember the stretch that year where they went 10 games with only one regulation loss? We weren’t rebuilding then. We ACQUIRED Visnovsky. We ACQUIRED Cole.

    In 09-10 the first year of sucking hard at one point we were 15-13-4 for 34 points after 32 games. Not great, but not horrible either. In the final 49 games they only won 12 more times. Thats when the sucking started. December 15, 2009. Up until that point the Oilers were a playoff contending team.

    Also, it wasn’t because they decided to trade away veterans and rebuild. It was because they had shitty goaltending.

    Geezus get off the freaking 8 year thing. It hasn’t been 8 shitty ass, difficult, horrible, season.

    Stop trying to rewrite the Oilers history.

    You are correct that the suckage started in 2009/10. The only person of influence still left from that year, is Bucky.

  147. oliveoilers says:

    Caramel Obvious,

    “The question that needs to be asked is who is the next Couturier.”

    Ahh, the $64000 question. Or considerably more, if you know the answer. The term “they are like trying to find rocking horse shit” springs to mind. I’ve always been a ‘speculate to accumulate’ guy. I seem to remember Tambi or Lowe saying that you draft BPA then trade for need. We seem to have a hard time letting go….

  148. prairieschooner says:

    From Hardcores post
    MacT in no uncertain terms “will be bringing in a veteran defence man”
    Just one MacT?
    Is the vet d man you have lined up committed to joining the Oilers ? or could you find yourself, like last year unable to pull off the big deal?
    I think Mac Ts summer hiring campaign may be akin to hiring guys to defend the Alamo

  149. G Money says:

    sliderule: If you look at the top goal six scoring forwards on the the top five scoring teams you find that they average at 200 lbs.The oilers top six goal scorers average around 192 lbs .The lightest team of the top five the hawks averages 197..There is no question that is a significant difference even measured against a so called possession team like Chicago.

    That actually understates the harsh reality quite a bit! Recapping previous work (I should try to do this each game day thread maybe):

    Size comparison: F roster, Top 3 F, D roster, Top 4 D

    Oilers 201 lbs, 187 lbs, 199 lbs, 190 lbs

    Hawks 201 lbs, 197 lbs, 202 lbs, 205 lbs

    So even though the Hawks are not big enough to push anyone around, they aren’t small enough to be pushed around easily either.

    On a head to head basis:

    When the Oiler top 3 F go against the Hawks Top 4 D, the Oilers are outweighed by 18 lbs.

    When the Hawks top 3 F go against the Oilers Top 4 D, the Oilers are outweighed by 7 lbs.

  150. DeadmanWaking says:

    hardcore: his only real comment about the latter being that he’s seen thicker arms on a pair of glasses

    At least the kid can be thankful it’s not the wire rim sixties.

    Well there, HC, I was wondering if you farted or something. No-one seemed to be expressing any love for your delightful post. But nope, just the self-confessed old dog, disarmed and near-sighted.

    —-

    Sherman: What about your glasses? Don’t you need them?

    Peabody: I’m not actually near-sighted, you know.

    Sherman: I don’t get it.

    Peabody: No-one blames the dog, if you catch my drift, when the dog gives his thick, black earpiece a professorial wag.

    Sherman: Uh, but I don’t catch your drift.

    Peabody: Precisely. Because it wasn’t me.

    Sherman: But I still don’t get it!

    Peabody: Better to have frames than to be framed.

    Sherman: But you don’t have your glasses, they were filched.

    Peabody: Hurry along. I think we’ll find my glasses right where we left them, before we departed.

    Sherman: I don’t get it. We brought them along.

    Peabody: Hmmm. I’ve been known to … borrow from myself at times, my future self, I mean. The WABAC is, shall we say, tempting in that way. If I can’t find my keys, I can just nip back and pinch a pair from whenever I’ve recently been. Terribly handy. Then soon enough my past self finds them again back at home.

    Sherman: I don’t get it. How are you able to misplace your glasses in the future, when they’re already gone now? Don’t you have to lose them first, before you sneak back and snitch them from yourself?

    Peabody: Not a problem, as it appears I’ve lost them already. So it seems I will soon have to come back and filtch them from myself–unless they turn up first–before our next Bavarian excursion, if not sooner. Bavarians are always fanning the flames.

    Sherman: I still don’t get it. Your glasses don’t seem to exist anywhen between now and then.

    Peabody: Tut tut. A small eyewear gap is no cause for alarm. The WABAC giveth and the WABAC taketh away.

    Sherman: Why so cloak and dagger? Can’t you just nip back and ask nicely?

    Peabody: Nooooo. What if you gave the wrong response? Pfffffft. Puff of contradiction. All that would be left of you is the blue smoke.

    Sherman: Puff the Dragon? When Puff puffs we call it a “blue angel”. Remember Puff?

    Peabody: Not that blue smoke.

    Sherman: Then what blue smoke?

    Peabody: My dear boy, a causal short circuit is much the same as an electrical short circuit. A causal congruence does not merely vanish from time without an acrid release. We sometimes call them “blue angels”.

    Sherman: Oh. [ponders for a moment] Ewww. Yuck. You mean the WABAC smell?

    Peabody: I prefer to think of it as a “new car” smell. But suit yourself.

    Sherman: Oh, that’s terrible. You said it was safe.

    Peabody: Safe enough if you lose your glasses. Not so safe if you lose your bearings. Don’t ask, don’t tell. Them’s the rules going back in time.

    Sherman: [sniffing gingerly] Hey! [sniffs again] Hey! That’s not a car smell! Ewwww, let me out. Open the door. And stop wagging!

    Peabody: [wagging furiously] Maybe we do need my glasses, after all.

    —-

    I’m a bit freaked out at the synchronicity of my improvisational jag. I thought it was me going on a WABAC lark–had no idea whatsoever about the movie being in fresh release. Unfortunately, I’m inclined to place my faith in the curmudgeonly reviews which suggest a little something was lost in translation.

    Here’s a short trip down memory lane, or at least a droll 30 seconds. The combustible combatant.

  151. stevezie says:

    Woodguy,

    Good news. Thanks.

  152. hardcore says:

    Lowetide,

    Thanks for noticing guys…I feel like its time for me to pull the old George Costanza and end on a high note…I’m out

    http://youtu.be/8YaaZZN9VYs

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