RE 14-15 DALLAS EAKINS: COURT AND SPARK

Dallas Eakins arrived amid much fanfare and the promise of a new tomorrow. The early promise bled out before we saw a November dawn. The death march through the schedule looked exactly like those WW2 reels of defeated armies marching through snow, praying something would take them before the enemy. I pray to baby Jesus we don’t see another winter like that one. A fan is a fan—the heart wants what it wants—but another season like that one might turn us all into stamp collectors.

  1. I can’t believe they didn’t fire him.  MacT’s a loyal guy.
  2. Ralph was saying that just the other day. MacT’s a loyal guy to the people he believes in.
  3. Is there anything that gives you pause? The verbal at the end of the season about having turned a corner. That was some bad verbal. However, there have been some real positives this summer, some real ‘wow’ moments.
  4. We’ll get to the changes in a minute. Were there good days last season? Yes. Game One is an example. 49-42 via Parkatti and the Gordon and Arcobello lines were humming.
  5. What happened after that? Well, the Corgi’s rolling out (this is Parkatti, so even strength) were 44.3 (VAN); 48.1 (NJD); 50.5 (MON); 46.1 (TOR); 50 (WAS); 46.9 (PIT); 41.1 (NYI); 27.7 (OTT); 44.2 (MON); 54.3 (WAS); 52.6 (PHX); 25.3 (LAK); 61.8 (TOR).
  6. Was this blog trumpeting the 5 October games over 50%? No, I was trying to get the goalie traded. In fairness, MacTavish was way ahead of me.
  7. How long was the Corsi  running? Tyler Dellow tweeted out after 38 games: Last year, the Oilers had 12/48 games in which they won or tied the Corsi% Close. This year, it’s 16/38. 25% vs. 42%.
  8. That’s good! Yes, but they tweaked and brawned and vapored and didn’t have the courage of their possession convictions.
  9. That’s your issue? The man is arrogant and spent the year telling everyone he is in charge! Rookie coach, didn’t have NHL experience, possibly felt he could treat NHL players like AHL players. That’s a five minute conversation from the GM, we’re good to go.
  10. Jesus. Jesus. I don’t believe you! Hey, Eakins frustrated me too. How in God’s name he remained stubborn with that damn 1-3-1 power play is beyond me, and playing Nuge 28:20 fresh from an injury was mighty galling, too. Hall at center, punish the Russian kid for never having played Roger Nielson hockey, you bet, lots of irritants. And if he could JUST ONE TIME TAKE THE BLAME FOR SOMETHING!!!
  11. There. Don’t you feel better? I don’t really feel that way. I think Eakins is a bright guy, and don’t really care about his personality. He’ll have a better one the moment Edmonton wins 45 games.
  12. Okay, what are your problems with him again? Dallas Eakins abandoned the plan. Swarm, possession, grititude, all that stuff.
  13. The big issue was not sticking to the plan? Yes. Dallas Eakins and Craig MacTavish altered course and believe the last 20 games showed progress.
  14. To quote Indiana Jones, they’re digging in the wrong place? Yes. They were a year ago.
  15. And this summer? LOTS of really good things happened.
  16. Rank them! No. 1: Mark Fayne. That’s a quality addition, and gives the defense someone else they can really count on. I spoke to Rob Vollman this week, and he said the Oilers now have two top-pairing D in Fayne and Petry. Music! Now, find two lefties who can play with him and we’re walking on sunshine.
  17. No. 2? Craig Ramsay. I always liked him, he’s a winner. The team will have more structure and be more relaxed. I think they’ll hold their positions better too, and we’ll see a marked reduction in those puck chasing sequences. He isn’t a miracle worker, but his personality is honey compared to flies, and I think these young men will walk through fire for him by Christmas. He’ll make the game fun, and the winning will too.
  18. No. 3? Benoit Pouliot. He might be that key mentor for the German and the Russian.
  19. A Frenchman schooling the Russians and Germans? I said mentor, you tit.
  20. No. 4? Teddy Purcell. He gives them a nice group of veterans on RW. That was a nice trade. Purcell is a little under the radar, but he should land a feature role with Perron and maybe Leon or Arco. Purcell can take and make a pass, play with skill and he isn’t 40. Solid addition.
  21. No. 5? Nikita Nikitin. I’m not down on him like some others, but think he ranks 5th on the procurement list. If he can form an effective duo with Fayne, and help the addled power play, I will have badly underestimated him. I think he’ll do both things at times, but not consistently.
  22. What about Dellow’s hiring? I don’t know where to slot the hiring of Tyler. This is weird. He’s a friend, so I’m not going to grade the hiring now.
  23. Once again, cutting-edge journalism from this blog! I think it’s important, and it could be No. 1 if they find an efficient and productive way to breakout and break-in. But it’s not clear-cut how much message will be used, or get through. I’m comfortable included him out at this point.
  24. Why this song? This was made for Dallas Eakins. It’s about an unusual guy who re-invents himself and may not be overly self aware or completely bona fide, but there’s something compelling about him.
  25. Any thoughts on the artist for next springs RE? The Beach Boys. The freaking Beach freaking Boys. I need sunshine after the rain. Maybe Blue Rodeo?

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72 Responses to "RE 14-15 DALLAS EAKINS: COURT AND SPARK"

  1. rubbertrout says:

    I’ve been waiting for this one. Was a little more gentle than I suspected. At some point I would like to see what you think the impact of Tyler being with the squad is notwithstanding your personal relationship.

    The whole mchockey1979 being hired by the perpetual rebuild team is still far to surreal for my little brain to handle.

  2. hungoverman says:

    I think Judas Priest would be great for next summers RE. Breaking the Law, Diamonds and Rust, Painkiller, You’ve got another thing coming, etc. A whole bunch of great ones.
    Also I think the team will be much better this year than in the past. Eakins will learn from his mistakes last year. Not playoffs better, but not unwatchable by Halloween like last season.
    Thanks LT for the great writing this summer.

  3. Hammers says:

    You summed it up as well as you could .My fear is talk is cheap and Eakins needs to reinvent himself especially with last years players . McT maybe loyal but his not stupid so if the cold winter march happens again expect McT behind the bench . I don’t think it will but still hope Eakins learned his lesson .

  4. Woodguy says:

    Is there anything that gives you pause? The verbal at the end of the season about having turned a corner. That was some bad verbal. However, there have been some real positives this summer, some real ‘wow’ moments.

    This is the biggest concern.

    Were they blowing smoke or did they actually believe it.

    Hiring Tyler makes me think its a bit of both.

    They *thought* they were getting better as some specific things (“Hey look at us win more faceoffs!”), but they *knew* they were still getting outchanced badly.

    I think they were shining up the turd so it wasn’t all doom and gloom.

    I hope they were.

  5. Woodguy says:

    So extraskater.com is offline and he hasn’t posted on twitter for 3 days.

    Best guesses on twitter is that he was bought.

    Hope it springs up somewhere else, even behind a paywall.

    If some team bought it to keep it private, that would suck.

    Also,

    The NHL updated their websites’s terms of use: http://www.nhl.com/ice/page.htm?id=26389

    Key part:

    2. Prohibited Content and Activities

    -Engage in unauthorized spidering, scraping, or harvesting of content or information, or use any other unauthorized automated means to compile information;

    That’s basically how Gabe, BTN and Stats.hockeyanalysis.com gets their info.

    Not a good development.

    I hope the NHL bought extraskater and are going to host it.

    In the NBA all the teams bought up the best fancystat sites and hired the best people and it became much tougher for amateurs to analyze data.

    Hope that doesn’t happen here.

  6. Bad Seed says:

    It’ll never happen but you could base the last 20 seasons save one on Slayer’s catalogue. Season’s in the Abyss comes to mind…

    I’d like to see the Stones done again. And is one of LT’s favourites from the past. That was great reading, Back when there was some optimism on this site!

  7. gd says:

    To me Eakins is the biggest wild card for this season. The hirings made this year and the interviews I have heard from him during the offseason have really impressed me. He seems less cocky and more introspective. That said I still can’t get over how much of a disaster last year and the fact that all of the young guys seemed to regress is really concerning.

    His age and background coming here seem to fit a guy who should be an effective NHL coach. I don’t think he is going to be as good as Cooper, but guys like Yeo and Richards seemed to have similar problems in their first year and have evolved into legit playoff coaches.

    I’m not sure anyone knows if he truly has it in him to be a legit NHL coach (including MacT). I do believe Eakins is smart and self-aware enough to know he has to make it work here or he will probably never get another NHL head coaching job again, so I believe he will do everything possible to make this season a success. If I’m still watching every game in January then he has had a reasonably successful season. He really could be fired 20 games in or he could be a finalist for the Adams or something in between.

  8. Ducey says:

    Not sure why Eakins ‘not taking blame’ is an issue.

    1) He did take blame in admitting the swarm wasn’t appropriate
    2) Admitting blame publically is not an essential element for success for an NHL coach (eg.Glen Sather)
    3) He has admitted thru his actions and words that he is open to change (Ramsay, Rocky T, Dellow, hanging out with the football coaches)

  9. rickithebear says:

    holland when asked about Babcock this morning>

    I would like to keep him.
    Mike has won 2 olympics and 1 stanley.
    He is at the peak of career.

    He is in a good position!

  10. Numenius says:

    26. Eakins seems emotionally stunted. How can he learn to lighten up and maybe exorcise a few of his demons? Well, he could start by learning how to smile when things are going well.

  11. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy:
    So extraskater.com is offline and he hasn’t posted on twitter for 3 days.

    Best guesses on twitter is that he was bought.

    Hope it springs up somewhere else, even behind a paywall.

    If some team bought it to keep it private, that would suck.

    Also,

    The NHL updated their websites’s terms of use: http://www.nhl.com/ice/page.htm?id=26389

    Key part:

    2. Prohibited Content and Activities


    -Engage in unauthorized spidering, scraping, or harvesting of content or information, or use any other unauthorized automated means to compile information;

    That’s basically how Gabe, BTN and Stats.hockeyanalysis.com gets their info.

    Not a good development.

    I hope the NHL bought extraskater and are going to host it.

    In the NBA all the teams bought up the best fancystat sites and hired the best people and it became much tougher for amateurs to analyze data.

    Hope that doesn’t happen here.

    I saw that last night as well.

    If this is the “new dawn” of analytics in the sport we’ve all been waiting for, well, yay for our Pyrrhic victory. I guess.

  12. hunter1909 says:

    Eakins: Arrogant to the point where he publicly disses the idea of studying the NHL level team(since it’s the Lowe oiler’s I use this term loosely); instantly flounders + what does he do? Blames others…like 20 year old Nail Yakupov, or even Taylor Hall for tossing water around during games.

    Eakins is nothing more than a fraud. The team knows it, I know it. MacT might or might not know it, and we can all rest assured that Kevin Lowe knows where the Jameson’s is.

    I fervently hope the team goes on another 3-17 run to open the season. Then nothing will be able to save Eakins, and….voila! Coach Ramsay turns the moribund franchise around in a hurry.

    My two cents.

  13. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy:
    So extraskater.com is offline and he hasn’t posted on twitter for 3 days.

    Best guesses on twitter is that he was bought.

    Hope it springs up somewhere else, even behind a paywall.

    If some team bought it to keep it private, that would suck.

    Also,

    The NHL updated their websites’s terms of use: http://www.nhl.com/ice/page.htm?id=26389

    Key part:

    2. Prohibited Content and Activities


    -Engage in unauthorized spidering, scraping, or harvesting of content or information, or use any other unauthorized automated means to compile information;

    That’s basically how Gabe, BTN and Stats.hockeyanalysis.com gets their info.

    Not a good development.

    I hope the NHL bought extraskater and are going to host it.

    In the NBA all the teams bought up the best fancystat sites and hired the best people and it became much tougher for amateurs to analyze data.

    Hope that doesn’t happen here.

    https://twitter.com/draglikepull/status/500281060723552256

  14. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy:
    Is there anything that gives you pause? The verbal at the end of the season about having turned a corner. That was some bad verbal. However, there have been some real positives this summer, some real ‘wow’ moments.

    This is the biggest concern.

    Were they blowing smoke or did they actually believe it.

    Hiring Tyler makes me think its a bit of both.

    They *thought* they were getting better as some specific things (“Hey look at us win more faceoffs!”), but they *knew* they were still getting outchanced badly.

    I think they were shining up the turd so it wasn’t all doom and gloom.

    I hope they were.

    I also think “all of the above” is the right answer.

    But… there is also a psychological answer of sorts.

    People often say “things are getting better” even when they aren’t. Sometimes to put on a brave face (for themselves or others) or sometimes because they want to believe it is true.

    Saying that kind of thing doesn’t preclude the kind of deep analysis that comes to real conclusion on the situation in another context.

  15. HitmanHart says:

    hunter1909,

    Wow, just Wow.
    Myself I hope they start on 17-3 run to open the season.

  16. regwald says:

    hungoverman:
    I think Judas Priest would be great for next summers RE. Breaking the Law, Diamonds and Rust, Painkiller, You’ve got another thing coming, etc.A whole bunch of great ones.
    Also I think the team will be much better this year than in the past. Eakins will learn from his mistakes last year. Not playoffs better, but not unwatchable by Halloween like last season.
    Thanks LT for the great writing this summer.

    Personally, I think we should hold onto the idea of Tom T Hall if this team flounders again this year with gems like:

    Watermelon Wine
    Sneaky Snake
    I Like Beer
    A Week in a Country Jail
    The Old Side of Town
    Me and Jesus
    The Monkey That Became President
    Salute to a Switchblade

  17. jfry says:

    Great picture selection. i think it kind of sums up Eakin’s year and is probably one of those things he looks back at is embarrassed about.

    hopefully there’s more clapping and smiling this year.

  18. jfry says:

    As always, a fun series LT.

  19. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: https://twitter.com/draglikepull/status/500281060723552256

    That’s good to know.

    Do you know the source of dlp’s info?

  20. slopitch says:

    LT, I think Tyler should give your radio show the first public interview since the hiring. Pay homage to his roots.

  21. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    slopitch:
    LT, I think Tyler should give your radio show the first public interview since the hiring. Pay homage to his roots.

    If they let him do media (they haven’t yet), he’ll probably have to stick to the right’s holder (630).

  22. oliveoilers says:

    Wow LT, off on a bit of a tangent with #15 through #23? That was more an analysis of MacTs summer moves. More building up DE, smashing him down, building him up, smashing him down, and if there’s any time left before supper, building him back up.

    I like that you don’t care about how DE comes across. I’ve posted before though that being a little more palatable can get you a little more grace. I too do not care about his personality. As long as he’s kicking butt. Just makes it easier to skid him from a PR angle when it does all go tits up. We all want our heroes to be jolly nice chaps, but you have to have your jerks as well.

    John Tortorella says “Hi!”

  23. Numenius says:

    hunter1909: Eakins is nothing more than a fraud. The team knows it, I know it.

    Hall and Eberle don’t seem to know it.

  24. oliveoilers says:

    LT, I also understand that DE is a poison chalice of a subject and you probably don’t want a lot of post along the lines of “the fans ran X out of town, and now they’re doing the same to Eakins” or “we’ve had 15 coaches in 2 years, we need consistency”. Polarising topic, to be sure.

  25. jake70 says:

    2 things for me that stuck out:

    -As mentioned, playing RNH half his first game back. I am wondering as well (some posters here alluded it to it last season) about the conditioning (some seemed fatigued physically, mentally too I would imagine) as the season went on.

    –He was pretty animated during the waterbottlegate incident. He might want to show some of that toward a referee once in a while on a bad call…., pick his spots, don’t do it often but just once in a while to show the players he is with them.

  26. G Money says:

    hunter1909: I fervently hope the team goes on another 3-17 run to open the season. Then nothing will be able to save Eakins, and

    Perhaps it’s time for you to take a break from all things Oilers.

    When you “fervently” hope that the team you claim to be a “fan” of goes on an extended losing streak – something that is brutally punishing not just on the head coach, but all coaches, staff, players and fans – just to spite a coach you now hate based on a vindictive narrative that is concocted mostly in your own mind … your grasp on any sense of reality or reasonable perspective is a speck in the rearview.

    If that’s how you feel, get help. Seriously. Get help.

  27. Showerhead says:

    edit: When I posted the comment, it mangled my html and broke those links. Is this common? How do I fix it?

    A smattering of thoughts:

    Dallas Eakins will be a better coach this year than last.
    I believe this not just because any time you have a second look at the same job, you get better at it but also of course because everything we know about his summer says he has been working at improvement. His player usage has already (mostly) made sense. His X’s and O’s have come under more convincing scrutiny and this is where I expect we’ll see the most improvement. A few more ideas and a little bit better conviction.

    You can be an asshole and a good coach.
    I don’t think Dallas Eakins is nearly the jerk/villain that many posters seem to like portraying him as. Myself, I see a very hard-nosed guy who demands a lot but holds himself to the same standards. I like when I read articles like <a href="http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2014/03/18/dallas-eakins-nail-yakupov-is-a-hot-button-topic-for-the-edmonton-oilers-organization/&quot; this one and <a href="http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2014/08/07/optimist-prime-its-been-a-good-summer-for-the-edmonton-oilers-especially-dallas-eakins/&quot; this one where Eakins is clearly supportive of Yakupov, who a lot of posters seem to worry about with respect to the coach. If he’s a hard-ass, he’s one that knows he has to look out for people too.

    With all of that said, even if he was a prick, that wouldn’t necessarily mean Eakins was automatically a bad coach any more than the fact I’m a nice guy would guarantee me success in the very same job. You don’t win games by being more polite than the other guy.

    Playoffs? or: I can’t believe they still have that hole at centre.

    This team is slightly better than last year’s team. The coach will be slightly better than last year’s coach. The goaltending is probably slightly better and possibly quite a bit better than last year’s goaltending. Are they good enough? You tell me. I say they need a centre and that the conference is too tough and that, barring major trades and injuries, they will be a spot or two outside the playoffs when all is said and done. Is there anything Eakins or MacT can do to change this?

    Just thinking out loud on a Friday morning. Thanks for the great series, LT.

  28. Jonathan Willis says:

    It’s your call as always, LT, but I’ve been waiting years for you to do Blue Roder :). There’s a full range of possibility there, and heck maybe you even get to use Five Days in May.

  29. hunter1909 says:

    G Money: Perhaps it’s time for you to take a break from all things Oilers.

    When you “fervently” hope that the team you claim to be a “fan” of goes on an extended losing streak – something that is brutally punishing not just on the head coach, but all coaches, staff, players and fans – just to spite a coach you now hate based on a vindictive narrative that is concocted mostly in your own mind … your grasp on any sense of reality or reasonable perspective is a speck in the rearview.

    If that’s how you feel, get help.Seriously.Get help.

    LOL It’s not quite what you think.

    Sure, I don’t like Eakin’s smarmy face…therefore why should I want to have to suffer the additional pain of not only a losing team, but a coach who in every way I can think of helps to make the team terrible?

    I guess work’s hard today – or else i’d have thought before writing “fervently”.

    Re needing help – that train’s already left the station.

  30. Lowetide says:

    slopitch:
    LT, I think Tyler should give your radio show the first public interview since the hiring. Pay homage to his roots.

    I expect Tyler’s radio appearances will be with the rights holder, which is fair. I would certainly expect that in the same situation.

  31. Lois Lowe says:

    Eakins made some mistakes last season, but none of them have anything to do with his attitude. I actually don’t get where the whole arrogance narrative comes from. Actually I do, it’s from the MSM which he’s prickly to when they ask questions hoping for answers that confirm their biases. Eakins’ extremely well spoken, clearly cares about improving his performance and the team’s, and seems to genuinely put the players first.

    Those still in the cult of Kreuger seem to forget how often the former coach would say a lot of words without actually saying anything of substance. Last season’s pre and post-game interviews with Eakins were one of the highlights of the season; which is an indictment of the on-ice product to be sure, but also gives me faith that the head coach is not the problem.

  32. GATO BANDIDO says:

    I just want to add to the chorus of thank-yous for this series, LT, and for your writing in general. This was the most soul-crushing season in Oilers history but your calming influence helps a great deal.

    I married a wonderful Colorado girl this summer who is cheering sincerely for our Oilers rather than Avs (though she’ll always be a Bronco fan) and I want her to be happy. Mr. Eakins: my marriage is counting on you!

    I’ve really enjoyed the Joni Mitchell and Van Morrison series and if you are set on the sunniness of the Beach Boys that’s cool, let’s hope it ends up being an appropriate choice. But let me cast an early vote for U2 (remember Gilbert Brule and Bono?). There must be a perfect spot for “With Or Without You.”

  33. Well Oiled and Enthusiastic says:

    Thanks for the series LT. I have enjoyed every read and it has certainly helped bridge the summer months as we wait for a new season. I commend the work and effort you put into these.

    The Eakins situation is close to resolving itself. If he has found the right balance for leading/pushing the players, employing a sensible and effective system, has uncovered some humility and can run with the big boy coaches at the NHL level in real time game action, we will know this inside 30 games. If its the same old same old, he is dust. The management just can’t hold their noses this year for the whole year on whether Eakins is ‘the guy’ or not. If they do, they put themselves in harms way from fan wrath and frustration. Can’t see MacT doing that frankly (loyalty be damned).

    I get that he was a rookie NHL coach and has to take his learning lumps as every rookie does, but for me, there is little confidence in him and his approach/style. I hope I’m wrong (because its a damn difficult reset to have to go through) and he really turns the corner and proves an inspired choice for molding our young warriors – if so, I can jump on board. One way or another however, that tipping point should be upon us before Christmas. I hope its a clear thumbs up/thumbs down situation and not a purgatory of whether to make change or not. That makes for a long season and unnecessarily protracts team development. This is the most nagging concern for me in the present state of the team – not 2C, not Yak, not our mix of defencemen – its Eakins impact and effectiveness and status as the game time commander and chief.

  34. Hammers says:

    I see Ralphs name has come up a couple of times . Since taking over as a major executive for Southampton football club they have sold off 90 million pounds worth of top flight players and the question now is can they field a team in the top 10 again . The man is obviously a highly regarded individual to the owner group but not so much to the actual fans . Football/Soccer players are bought & sold not traded for those not aware . Just thought I would give an update on our last coach before there season starts .

  35. Pouzar says:

    I can’t seriously gauge DE as a coach with the sh!t that surrounded him last year.
    An AHL team surrounded by the OBC coaching staff. I believed his has tried like hell this offseason to put the right people in place and that counts for something.

    The question going forward should be what is the minimal improvement needed to quantify the year as a success. Everything else regarding his attitude or disposition or lack of smiley faces is frickin noise. I’d rather a prick anyways….suits my personality traits just fine. :)

  36. Truth says:

    I was hoping you were going to use the picture of Eakins throwing a hissy fit after Hall inadvertently sprayed him with water. I’ll never forget that as a fan of the Oilers, I couldn’t imagine what the players were thinking and still think about that. I bet they’ve had a good chuckle over a few beers. “Can you believe that guy? Supposed to be capable of running an NHL team but gets a little spray of water by accident and acts like somebody Comrie’d the Mrs.” It would be hard to take him seriously after that as a player.

    That is my only real grind against Eakins. I have a feeling I would have a hard time playing for him (good thing I have average beer league skill, at best) but I have to admit he has been talking the talk this off-season. I’m sure he will be allowed the full year to back it up. I hope he turns it around but I won’t be too dissapointed if the Oilers end up starting next season with Eichel or McDavid and a new coach, either. Too soon?

  37. leadfarmer says:

    Any thoughts on the artist for next springs RE? The Beach Boys. The freaking Beach freaking Boys. I need sunshine after the rain. Maybe Blue Rodeo?

    How about Nickelback?

    Runs away giggling.

  38. Lois Lowe says:

    Lowetide: Any thoughts on the artist for next springs RE? The Beach Boys. The freaking Beach freaking Boys. I need sunshine after the rain. Maybe Blue Rodeo?

    Creedence Clearwater Revival? Tragically Hip could be very interesting as well.

  39. Henry says:

    Eakins has four things going for him entering this year: 1) Fayne and Nikitin are going to make the coach’s job much easier 2) Craig Ramsey 3) A willingness to get other points of view (and hopefully the ability to implement the ideas) but the biggest is just (4) having the second year. The appalling lack of continuity in the head coaching has been management’s second biggest failure. It hinders development.

    If the season goes well, the Who would be my choice for the next RE analysis. Blue Rodeo would be nice as well.

  40. Derek says:

    Metallica!

    If the team is infuriating and shitty use the second half of their library, and if the team is fun and exciting use the first half.

    Do a RE for Kevin Lowe using the song King Nothing. (I’m not the type to call for Lowes head 24/7 because I believe he has very little to do with the on ice product at this point, but his comment about knowing a little something about winning with the team in the state it is/was, goes so well with that song its ridiculous.)

  41. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: I expect Tyler’s radio appearances will be with the rights holder, which is fair. I would certainly expect that in the same situation.

    So?

    You’ve got Paypal now. Do some crowdsourcing and buy the rights to all Oilers broadcasts. I bet it’d get you that coveted look at Stu MacGregor’s draft list. Or at least a non-disclosured sit-in on the draft meetings.

    I actually wonder what PbP would sound like if you and Bruce were calling the games. With all due respect to Jack Michaels, I think I’d prefer it. Keep Gene, though. He’s a beauty.

  42. RexLibris says:

    Jonathan Willis:
    It’s your call as always, LT, but I’ve been waiting years for you to do Blue Roder :). There’s afull range of possibility there, and heck maybe you even get to use Five Days in May.

    Seconded.

    Has Gordon Lightfoot been covered? Leonard Cohen? I’ve lost track now.

  43. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Showerhead: With all of that said, even if he was a prick, that wouldn’t necessarily mean Eakins was automatically a bad coach any more than the fact I’m a nice guy would guarantee me success in the very same job.

    I see what you did there.

  44. VanOil says:

    If Eakins stops putting the knuckle draggers on after a goal against in fit of petulance I will be happy. If he does not play them at all I will be even happier.

    Extraskater has made watching hockey better I hope it continues long enough for me to see the Oilers regularly on the good side of the graphs.

    I jumped the gun on music/artiest requests for the next RE a few days ago http://lowetide.ca/blog/2014/08/re-14-15-viktor-fasth-for-free.html/comment-page-1#comment-330921

    I still stand by Daniela Andrade as what could be more fitting than a young Edmonton singer on the cusp of supper stardom.

    Plus how can LT resist a singer who sings odes to Emmylou http://youtu.be/8b4z9zLLswc

  45. thejonrmcleod says:

    I’d like to see an RE series with the songs of Muse (probably not LT’s cup of tea). Some great possibilities:

    Supremacy
    Madness
    Panic Station
    Survival
    Follow Me
    The 2nd Law: Unsustainable
    Save Me
    Uprising
    Resistance
    Supermassive Black Hole
    Invincible
    Starlight
    Stockholm Syndrome
    Apocalypse Please
    Time Is Running Out
    Hysteria
    Bliss

  46. Big Dan says:

    All of MacT rookie mistakes last summer (trying to solve the horrid D by picking up total roll-of-the-dice D , signing a crappy backup when he knew ahead of anyone else that Dubnyk sucked) pailed in comparison to the one deal-breaker.

    Hiring Eakins. I didn’t like it then and still don’t.
    There were so many strong alternatives, like Lindy Ruff.

    Eakins wet the bed. The season was a nightmare. Ok, it’s over now. Our worst fears were realized. It was a perfect storm. Move forward. Rinse and repeat.

    I get the feeling from the interviews that Eakins did learn his lessons (just like MacT did – he’s been golden since November 2013 in my opinion). And that keeping Eakins while bolstering his assistants – Ramsay and Thompson are both EXCELLENT – is the right call. Eakins sounds open to suggestions (his visit to Texas and hiring of Dellow).

    Eakins is a smart, albeit not entirely likeable, guy. And I think – despite all I gritted through last year – that he’s going to be a good coach this year. God I hope so.

  47. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Big Dan: There were so many strong alternatives, like Lindy Ruff.

    When it comes to coaching possibilities with the Oilers, Lindy Ruff shot himself in the head with his asinine treatment of Hall at the 2013 World Championships. I don’t think Eakins did one thing all of last season that rivalled that for dickishness.

  48. russ99 says:

    I’ve got to at least partially side with Hunter here.

    i’m not wishing for a record bad start, but I’m not convinced about Eakins either.

    Maybe a leopard can change his spots (which is really easy to do in the press), but I’m not betting on it and what happens in the room is going to decide how effective he is this season, and thus how long he holds the job.

  49. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: When it comes to coaching possibilities with the Oilers, Lindy Ruff shot himself in the head with his asinine treatment of Hall at the 2013 World Championships. I don’t think Eakins did one thing all of last season that rivalled that for dickishness.

    Depends. The press would like to take Eakins to task on his totally boneheaded deployment of carbohydrate confectioneries which is WAY outside the NHL QualCalorie/60 average.

    Of course, recent events have brought to light that in the end…it was all Dellow’s fault. (I’m officially launching that as “a thing” for this coming season)

  50. godot10 says:

    jake70:
    2 things for me that stuck out:

    –He was pretty animated during the waterbottlegate incident.He might want to showsome of that toward a referee once ina while on a bad call….,pick his spots, don’t do it often but just once in a while to show the players he is with them.

    Eakins is a sycophant up the food chain, and a bully down the food chain.

    This summer has been all about public relations rehabilitation. He can’t bully the players if the fans think he is the problem, so we are being “seduced”. Too bad he doesn’t put as much effort into coaching as he does into managing his reputation.

    But it is really pretty simple:
    Leopard, spots. QED.

  51. stevezie says:

    I love the RE series. I’ve known most of the artists pretty well so far, but Van Morrison was a real eye opener for me. Coupled with Rom’s assertion that it was a great make-out album, I’ve recently purchased Astral Weeks. (Haven’t had a chance to test it yet- the summer is a busy time.)

    My vote is for the next one is The Replacements, but it pet sounds like the enxt one is already set in stone. I wonder if we’ll see something off Smile?

  52. stevezie says:

    Big Dan: Eakins is a smart, albeit not entirely likeable, guy.

    Depends on what you find likeable. I’m a bigger fan of his personality than I am of his coaching, personally.

  53. Ca$h-Money! says:

    People keep getting on Eakins about the water bottle incident, I think it’s a tad overblown. He was grumpy because he’d spent the past several months coaching a terrible hockey team in a high pressure market. He got caught off guard at the wrong time, he had what amounts to a tantrum.

    I have little kids. Sometimes, at the end of a long hard day, they do something that is, in reality, mildly irritating, but to me at the time it is the final straw, at which point I lose it.

    I feel bad about it afterwards, and it doesn’t happen very often, but it happens. I don’t see the water bottle incident as being much different. I think it was a stupid reaction to a non problem… but I think it’s also very much forgivable.

    I don’t get the hate on for Eakins the man. He was a little hard on Yak, but he was also trying to teach him to be better, and I hope they can meet somewhere in the middle.

  54. Lois Lowe says:

    godot10:

    But it is really pretty simple:
    Leopard, spots. QED.

    We’ve been saying that about your opinions on Eakins going on a year now.

  55. G Money says:

    Lois Lowe: We’ve been saying that about your opinions on Eakins going on a year now.

    Ha, nice! Elegant, succinct. QED!

  56. Pouzar says:

    Lois Lowe: We’ve been saying that about your opinions on Eakins going on a year now.

    Yup.

    So when the Oilers DO improve this year the HFoilers will only credit Ramsay anyway……Oh wait….yup.

  57. papa96 says:

    LT, Thank you for a great series this summer. I commend your patience on the Coach. You are showing great wisdom, maybe more than I have. I wonder if DE can learn that with adults (most of the players are) less can be more. Also I wonder about the division of labour. MacT has to manage the team, the head coach has to manage the game. I would like to see DE leave motivation to someone else.

    Love the Beachboys suggestion. This time next year, will it be “Fun Fun Fun”, “Don’t Worry Baby”, or “God Only Knows”?

  58. A'bunadh says:

    His deployment of Gazdic was a head scratcher for me, too. Own zone draws at home against oppositions top lines way too often. His line matching (or lack thereof) and general deployment need to improve drastically.

    An AC/DC RE would be decent:
    Highway to Hell
    Shoot to thrill
    Who made who
    Shook me all night long
    Back in black
    The jack
    Problem child
    Dirty deeds done dirt cheap

    Some very fitting titles I think.

  59. bendelson says:

    stevezie: My vote is for the next one is The Replacements,

    There you go again Stevezee… making another fine music reccomendation.

    The Beach Boys?
    When I picked up a used copy of Pet Sounds some time ago, my wife openly quesitoned my taste in music. She has since retracted the comment.

  60. ChiliChunk says:

    A’bunadh:
    His deployment of Gazdic was a head scratcher for me, too. Own zone draws at home against oppositions top lines way too often. His line matching (or lack thereof) and general deployment need to improve drastically.

    An AC/DC RE would be decent:
    Highway to Hell
    Shoot to thrill
    Who made who
    Shook me all night long
    Back in black
    The jack
    Problem child
    Dirty deeds done dirt cheap

    Some very fitting titles I think.

    Who would get “Jailbreak” now that Gagner is gone?

  61. PREDICKTER says:

    A’bunadh:
    His deployment of Gazdic was a head scratcher for me, too. Own zone draws at home against oppositions top lines way too often. His line matching (or lack thereof) and general deployment need to improve drastically.

    An AC/DC RE would be decent:
    Highway to Hell
    Shoot to thrill
    Who made who
    Shook me all night long
    Back in black
    The jack
    Problem child
    Dirty deeds done dirt cheap

    Some very fitting titles I think.

    *It’s a long way to the top* would be very fitting also, plus it’s the best use of bag pipes by a rock band EVER

  62. Factotum Pochemuchka says:

    82 games under Eakins:
    29-44-9, 67pts, GF 203 GA 270

    Previous 82 games under Renney/Krueger:
    33-36-13, 79 pts, GF 216 GA 234

    What if Eakins’ Oilers can do this in 2014-2015:
    91 points and +31 in GD?

    Would that be progress?

    That’s what will be necessary for Eakins’ two-year record to average out to the same level of performance as the final 82 games of his predecessors.

  63. commonfan14 says:

    Factotum Pochemuchka: 82 games under Eakins:
    29-44-9, 67pts, GF 203 GA 270
    Previous 82 games under Renney/Krueger:
    33-36-13, 79 pts, GF 216 GA 234
    What if Eakins’ Oilers can do this in 2014-2015:
    91 points and +31 in GD?
    Would that be progress?
    That’s what will be necessary for Eakins’ two-year record to average out to the same level of performance as the final 82 games of his predecessors.

    At least he crushed Pat Quinn. Oh, wait…

    2009-10:
    27-47-8, 62pts, GF 214 GA 284

  64. hunter1909 says:

    PREDICKTER: *It’s a long way to the top* would be very fitting also, plus it’s the best use of bag pipes by a rock band EVER

    Bon Scott, plus both of their guitar players born in Glasgow helped with that.

  65. PREDICKTER says:

    hunter1909: Bon Scott, plus both of their guitar players born in Glasgow helped with that.

    kind of looks like Eakins, http://www.hdwpapers.com/bon_scott_wallpaper_by_lilpunky-wallpapers.html

    Dallas(It’s a long way to the top)Eakins

  66. flyfish1168 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: When it comes to coaching possibilities with the Oilers, Lindy Ruff shot himself in the head with his asinine treatment of Hall at the 2013 World Championships. I don’t think Eakins did one thing all of last season that rivalled that for dickishness.

    Hi Bruce. I often agree with your opinion. But on this matter I will disagree with you greatly. From the outside looking in I would say it was worst from eakins towards one player. Often calling or signalling him out in the media and the double standard treatment. I’m just glad eakins is reaching out and hope the young star excepts and lets go the double standard treat that was doled out on him. JMHO.

  67. Bruce McCurdy says:

    flyfish1168: Hi Bruce. I often agree with your opinion. But on this matter I will disagree with you greatly. From the outside looking in I would say it was worst from eakins towards one player. Often calling or signalling him out in the media and the double standard treatment. I’m just glad eakins is reaching out and hope the young star excepts and lets go the double standard treat that was doled out on him. JMHO.

    Eh, maybe Eakins/Yak “rivalled” Ruff/Hall for dickishness, so you have a point. I know I ripped both of them pretty good for those exact offences.

  68. hunter1909 says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    I tend to agree with most of your writing. It’s probably the one media regular writing on the Oilers that consistently remains level headed, while the rest of us make like Nero’s been playing his fiddle.

    During researching, re WW1 ran across a Robert McCurdy, born 1986. I can forget what I did 5 minutes ago, but always remember names.

  69. flyfish1168 says:

    Thanks Bruce. I do see eakins trying to change and learn. i do believe having a positive environment is important, none of this negativity. Just from the media interviews you can feel the tension that was built up from the management all the way down to the stick boy. That wasn’t healthy and hopefully the boys will just come out and have fun 1st.

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