RE 14-15 DARYL KATZ: BOTH SIDES NOW

Daryl Katz purchased the Edmonton Oilers on July 2, 2008. The club has been a massive financial success since then, selling out everything available and landing the Taj Mahal 2.0 for pennies. The performance of the team during that time is astonishing, made even moreso by a failed attempt to turn north last fall. The Oilers under the Katz regime are beyond bad—can’t anyone here play this game?—and it simply has to get better soon. Like right now soon.

  1. Last time we talked you were not amused about Mr. Katz. Yes. At that time, I felt the Oilers were framing the last 30 games as some kind of a turnaround. That was in fact not the case, and it’s important to keep the team accountable. Own it. I’m a MacT fan, and believe Eakins can do the job, but let’s be real about our approach and clear with the fan base. The rebuild is over. Turn north! TRUE North!
  2. The last 20 games were better. No, they weren’t.
  3. What was their record in the last 20 games.  9-10-1.
  4. Well, there you go! Looking good! They were outscored 47-68 in those games.
  5. What about the Corgi’s? Good direction? 949-1309. 42%.
  6. So they told a tale about going 9-10-1. Yes, the offseason began with a defense of the head coach, the assistant coaches and the status quo. I objected to it in the strongest possible way, and wasn’t alone. MacT: “We have consistency of messaging, continuity of coaching are developing players and have big pieces. I’m very optimistic on the future.” That doesn’t sound like “I’m going to let Dallas set his course”, I didn’t read that into the media conference by MacT.
  7. Maybe you don’t listen well. I think MacTavish may have learned from the previous spring, when he raised expectations to the point people were waiting for the second coming of Stanley. He did a soft sell in the exit interview, didn’t tip his hand at all, then went about his business.
  8. Let’s talk about Katz. Sure.
  9. Katz is willing to spend money. You bet. He’s hired Ramsay, added Dellow, allowed his GM to unleash the hounds in free agency and there’s a lot to be impressed by this summer. I’m genuinely pleased.
  10. But not happy. I’m impatient. This is me being impatient.
  11. The whole 2C and the hissy fit about the No. 130 overall draft pick? Yes. Exactly.
  12. The Leon may not be ready and I’m not convinced Arcobello will score enough? Yes. Exactly.
  13. You don’t believe those things to be true? I believe they’re true. In another year, they wouldn’t matter as much. If the team had performed well enough to finish 23rd again, or 20th, the lack of balance would be less noxious. This is a really important year, based on what has happened over the summer.
  14. Why? I think there’s a window, there’s a change in the force. It’s in Calgary, and Phoenix and Vancouver, maybe even Denver although that’s a stretch.
  15. You’re saying they can pass a bunch of teams? I’m saying that I believe Edmonton will finish around tenth in the conference, and if they had a 2C, if they had balance, then the playoffs might be there for them in spring.
  16. Ramsay and Dellow. Who knew? Smart, smart hirings. Ramsay will calm the waters on the bad days, help with communication, set goals and praise when they’re reached. Dallas Eakins is no Sparky Anderson, which is fine. Having an old coach who can deliver a message with a smile and a slap on the back should help team aptitude right away.
  17. And Dellow? I’m trying very hard not to oversell this hiring, because all of the blogs are so close to this situation. Having said that, if Dellow simply takes the information he was already supplying the team on his blog and gives it to Eakins in real time, music! Dellow can be the guy to dig deep into the video, find out what’s wrong, or what’s changed, and deliver the message to Eakins.
  18. Why can’t Eakins do that? Time, I think. Time, and maybe Dellow sees patterns forming more quickly or doesn’t have the bias of dealing with personalities or playing favorites with the actual players.
  19. Eakins plays favourites? No, that’s not what I mean. I’m saying that Dellow can be the lab, where everything is disinfected and there’s no splatter.  He can say “Justin Schultz needs to hurry up his decision-making process and here are five examples’ or “Taylor Hall backs up the defensemen as soon as he gets on the ice, here’s an example of why Nail needs to get him the puck sooner” and then Eakins can show it to the player or change lines, et cetera. It could be a massive tool, a real-time tool, and there’s no way Eakins has time to do the work. This is huge.
  20. Katz get credit for this? Along with Eakins and MacT, yes.
  21. For what? For starting to figure it out. For realizing that mistakes are fine, even important, but you must learn from them. It’s all in the Devellano book.
  22. The Devellano book? Yes. Detroit hires him in 1982, they run through Nick Polano and Harry Neale before finding Jacques Demers as a suitable coach. They draft Murray Craven, but will piss him away. Next year they draft Steve Yzerman, Bob Probert, Petr Klima and things begin to improve. One year, Devellano tells Illitch about the college free agent signing season, Illitch tells him to sign them all. And they did! NHL teams are pissed at Detroit, Detroit can’t possibly suss out all the talent (they signed Adam Oates but sent him away for three double bubble and a ball of string). Now, it was easier to make the playoffs back then, but Detroit doesn’t get anywhere really until 1987—year FIVE of Jimmy D—and then they go deep a couple of times but eventually Bryan Murray comes in, then Scotty Bowman. Detroit wins Stanley 15 years after Devallano arrives.
  23. Christ Almighty. FIFTEEN YEARS? It takes time, it really does. When Illitch bought the team in 1982, they were called ‘the Dead Wings’ and the Oilers rolled over them for a long, long time. The roles are basically reversed now, although Detroit is no longer a league power.
  24. Will Hall still be here when the Oilers win? Don’t know. Yzerman was still there when they won, but he was in his 30′s.
  25. It’s a long road. Miles and miles of miles and miles. Mistake after mistake after mistake. Bad free agent signings, trades that didn’t work, injuries and life events and infighting and pettiness, there’s a lot that can go wrong with a hockey team. And when the team has a culture of losing? Doesn’t take much at all to send things sideways. That’s the lesson of the 1970′s Islanders, also a team Devellano was involved in, and those chapters are in that book, too. The Islanders suffered crushing loss after crushing loss, and it took seemingly forever to win the day.
  26. Why are you always pushing that damn book? Because Oiler fans should read it. Hockeytown is kind of the road map for a team undergoing a complete overhaul. It takes exactly forever to do it, but in the book you see how each change and improvement helps the whole and heals the past.
  27. Like Ramsay and Dellow? Like Ramsay and Dellow, and signing Lander and Arco and Hamilton for one more year, even though maybe you think they won’t make it. In there somewhere is a player of worth, who will be here when the good times arrive. If Lander ends up being a useful part of the machine, sending him away now has a real impact. So too with Petry, a player Edmonton risks losing while other NHL teams are signing similar players long term. These are MacT issues, and Eakins issues, but they’re also Katz issues. Molson in Montreal reportedly instructed his management to sign Subban long term, shortly after the painful arbitration process. Why would the owner do that? There are times when management, in executing the plan as agreed to, does more harm than good. I suspect that was such a case, and that Molson made the right call.
  28. Why this song? It’s Joni Mitchell later on, she’s in her big house with her memories from the miles of aisles. The words she wrote as a young woman have new strength and meaning as she sings them, much older now. It’s a funny thing, in youth we’re on our way to somewhere in a hurry, impatient. It’s only as we age that we realize the journey is the thing, our memories and our happiest times are in the damndest places, and we’re in a hurry in all of them. The words of the song meant one thing in 1968, mean another today. That’s the circle game. In this later version of her signature song, it’s all there. The love and the tears, the laughter and the cigarettes. And it’s beautiful again, but in a different way.
  29. And for Katz? He’s still restless, he’s still Hejira, trying to empire build across every format that comes his way. And he is learning from his mistakes, and that is the most encouraging thing this blog will write all year. He’s an empire builder, ladies. He knows the goal, and that is a big part of the game. Maintaining your focus on the goal is the difference between Daryl Katz and all the other U of A Oiler fans who want to be where he is now, owning the only thing that really matters to the city of his birth. The Edmonton Oilers.
  30. I can’t wait. Do we win Stanley? It’s out there in the clouds, and we simply have to wait for the answer to arrive.
  31. What does it feel like for your team to win the Stanley? I’d tell you, but would have to kill you.
  32. Come on. Do you remember 2006? Do you remember Conklin’s giveaway, and Jason Smith leading the three-on-two, and Pisani almost scoring in the third period of Game seven? Do you remember the devastation you felt? The hurt in that moment? Did you look at the faces of those men in white uniforms as they watched the reds dance and scream? Can you recall that pain? Now. Imagine the opposite. Imagine being so exposed (as a fan, in our case) that you feel that pain of a loss ten years after with the flick of a switch in your brain. Imagine those horrible moments you remember are replaced by good memories, by success, and imagine it’s your team, your players, your town, celebrating. It’s the best, and I promise not to take it for granted ever again, should the Oilers get there one more time. For Oilers fans, 2006 was the other side, the losing end, the both sides now. Watching the Oilers win Stanley in my 50′s would be even sweeter because of 2006, even though our voices are worn and our feet are clay. I pray it’s coming in my lifetime, and that’s why I’m impatient.
  33. The dizzy dancing way that you feel, as every fairy tale comes real. Can’t wait. Don’t drive your car to Whyte avenue, the fans will destroy it. Take the bus or LRT, make sure to have your phone fully charged, look after people, and call me if you need a ride home I don’t care what time it is.
  34. Done.

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

60 Responses to "RE 14-15 DARYL KATZ: BOTH SIDES NOW"

  1. sliderule says:

    If Dellow is going to be the guy that tells Eakins where Hall or anyone should position himself.

    Lord help the Oilers

  2. leadfarmer says:

    Like Mr. Dithers before him Mact is dithering with the 2C position. Sure it would be nice if Pitlick and Hamilton and Arco, and Lander, and Joensuu could all have NHL careers but most of them will not. There is not enough jobs. Time to make a decision on these guys and find someone that can play center in the NHL and then find another. Cause when Gordon or Nuge go down with injuries this year, it will be another year of Draftwatch, and a lot of people saying I told you so.

  3. Ca$h-Money! says:

    leadfarmer:
    Like Mr. Dithers before him Mact is dithering with the 2C position.Sure it would be nice if Pitlick and Hamilton and Arco, and Lander, and Joensuu could all have NHL careers but most of them will not.There is not enough jobs.Time to make a decision on these guys and find someone that can play center in the NHL and then find another.Cause when Gordon or Nuge go down with injuries this year, it will be another year of Draftwatch, and a lot of people saying I told you so.

    If the penguins lose Crosby and Malkin their centers will be Sutter, Spaling, Goc, and Adams.

  4. Lowetide says:

    sliderule:
    If Dellow is going to be the guy that tells Eakins where Hall or anyone should position himself.

    Lord help the Oilers

    I think there are lots of things the video can inform on, and changes made in real time that may not immediately get noticed. If there’s a resistance to this by the Oilers, then we won’t see a change at all. suspect that’s the thing to fret over.

  5. Hammers says:

    A lot of this is on Katz . He got what/who he wanted Lowe & McT . Lowe hired Tambo ( huge mistake , probably the one his most blamed for ) , then rehired McT who started by cleaning house and in 15 months has restocked the cuboards ( 11 new players not drafted). My guess is Katz has told them we better be in the playoffs when we go into the new building , OR ELSE . Doesn’t care about making money on the team as he doesn’t need it and thats why they can hire Dellow or whoever else they want . McT will get er done and we will be in the playoffs in 15-16 season . I probably won’t live long enough to see Stanley in Edmonton again but most of you will .

  6. TheOtherJohn says:

    No top pairing D, no 2C and unproven #1 goaltending. I agree with you though that if a number tumblers click we could compete for a playoff spot. Course if some of them don’t click(goalies prove they’re both backups, Nikitan is a 6 not a 4) we could be 23rd. And if we have an injury to RNH or Gordon it could be ugly. Not McDavid or Eichel ugly but still ugly

  7. D says:

    Winning the Cup so fast in the 80s has skewed the timeframe of many Oilers fans (such as myself). The 15 year timeline for Detroit is more realistic.

  8. russ99 says:

    Kind of odd that Lowetide has a Katz article and yet no mention of the “new arena conspiracy theory”.

    Too much of where we stopped short on player acquisition in a year when the coach’s and maybe the GM’s jobs are on the line leads me to believe that there’s some credence to that idea.

  9. DocFan says:

    LT,

    I’ve been reading this blog for 2 years. Your description of the pain of 2006 inspired my first comment:

    I routinely watch the Pisani Shorthanded Overtime Goal of Game 5. I think that is the closest I will ever come to witnessing a miracle.
    I think about Markkanen’s gusty shutout in Game 6.
    I don’t think about MAB taking out Roli, or Conklin’s Give away or Game 7.

    I want to stop having things to not think about. Hopefully Mr. Katz does too.
    Like all Oiler fans, my patience is constantly tested as all I want is the team I have cheered for my whole life to experience Stanley while i’m an adult.

    And the hope continues….

  10. Melman says:

    MacT has made a number of smart moves since he’s arrived. You, me, Eakins, Ramsay, Dellow and the paperboy call all see the hole at 2C, which means it’s safe to assume he does too. It’s impossible to think he has not considered this problem, measured it up against the prospect of LD, Arco and Lander as his only solution and slept soundly. It may take until November but all logic dictates that he’s working on a plan and there’s a reason(s) it hasn’t been executed. I can’t help but think settling Schultz’ $ hit is part of the bigger puzzle.

  11. RexLibris says:

    This might be your most poetic piece of this year’s RE series, LT.

    It’s a funny thing, in youth we’re on our way to somewhere in a hurry, impatient. It’s only as we age that we realize the journey is the thing, our memories and our happiest times are in the damndest places, and we’re in a hurry in all of them.

    Beautiful song. Something special about a piece of music that feel simultaneously celebratory and melancholy. I was waiting for this one all through the series.

    Now we wait for the games to start and our hearts to swell and break, depending on the day.

  12. blainer says:

    This is NOT an easy franchise to own in terms of attracting top talent. Number 1 defenseman do not grow on trees same with 1st and 2nd line centers. I will agree that mistakes have been made with trades , FA signings drafting and developing. This team was in such a hole we didn’t even have a minor league team. These kind of mistakes take time to fix but we are getting close. I am a bit tired of the complaints about the center problem as the solution for this will be wildly unpopular meaning.. We trade either Petry Shultz Perron or Next year’s first. That is what it will take to get the center everybody wants. MacT has said he does not want to do something stupid and I agree. We either make one of those trades in which case the oilogosphere will Freak out or he waits to see what he has at camp. Pick your poison.

  13. Ducey says:

    I would hope Katz stays far away from decision making on the ice. Owners are not hockey people. Molson likely made the right decision re: Subban but maybe he is the dope that put them over a barrel in the first place. They could have signed Subban for 8 years x $6.5 two years ago.

    Is Katz any better at managing the roster than Charles Wang, Eugene Melnyk, Dan Snyder, Murray Edwards, MLE or people like Al Davis? Maybe you want the curly head kid to run things?

    Most successful franchises have any owner that hires competent people and stays the hell out of things.

    I’d rather the Katz stay in his cave in VCR that be making decisions on the Oilers draft picks.

    He is doing a great job building a strong franchise a decent downtown district. Lets let him stick with that.

    —————————–
    And I am confused. The book says the rebuild will take 15 yrs but all is lost if the Oilers don’t get a 2C right quick? Sounds like one of the themes of the book is that you got to have patience.

    —————————-
    And Dellow? I like the hire. I expect he might be able to notice trends over segments of games. I hope to goodness he isn’t talking to Eakins from game to game on how to do the breakout or other tactics. I think he is going to find out real quick that other coaches make adjustments real quick and are not a stupid as some like to think, and that players might be in the right place at the right time for the system but that they can’t or won’t do the job.

  14. Henry says:

    This is a perfect coda to the series. Thanks LT.

  15. commonfan14 says:

    “Watching the Oilers win Stanley in my 50′s would be even sweeter because of 2006″

    I was too young to know what was going on at the time, but I’d be interested in the recollections of anyone on here sufficiently older than me to describe what the loss in 1983 was like. The only thing I’ve ever really heard about it is the old story about Gretz and Lowe passing the subdued celebration of the totally spent Isles and learning what it takes to win.

    Was it a fun ride that spring? Did they have you believing that they were going to get it done? Was the ending a kick in the stomach?

    How badly did it hurt as a fan at the time? Or was it almost entirely blunted by the ideas that they weren’t quite ready yet, that the Isles were still more worthy, and that better times were coming in a hurry?

    Did you fear at all that summer that things might fall apart before they got to the promised land?

    I’d enjoy reading any memories from those who feel like sharing.

  16. Henry says:

    As far as 2C goes, there is a non zero possibility that Arcobello Perron Purcell will be a good second line. It’s a risk having an undersized guy at 2C, but Arcobello was an experiment last year that worked out well. I’m much more worried about the depth if the Nuge goes down on a road trip.

  17. hunter1909 says:

    commonfan14,

    “Gretzky can’t lead a team”

    “Oilers are okay in the regular season, but they simply aren’t built to win anything in the postseason”

    This kind of baloney.

  18. Bag of Pucks says:

    commonfan14:
    I’d enjoy reading any memories from those who feel like sharing.

    Well, I was 17 in 83, was freakin’ obsessed with the Oilers, and losing to the Islanders again, (remember they also lost to them in 6 that wonderful Cinderella season where they topped the mighty Habs with rookie Andy Moog in net) HURT LIKE HELL.

    If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend Terry Jones’ Edmonton Hockey Knights. A lot of great info on the various plotlines that surrounded the team of that time.

    One aspect of those Dynasty teams that younger fans may fail to appreciate is that there was very real doubt for a number of years (culminating after the loss in 83) as to whether this young team of splendidly skilled players had the heart, grit, fortitude, etc. to actually win a Cup? In reality, they had all of those things in spades, but had not yet built the versatility into their game to win a low scoring defensive game. They would do that the next playoff in the 1-0 win over NYI in Game 1, and there really is no understating the confidence that single game gave the team that they had finally overcome a big hurdle and had what it took to win Lord Stanley’s mug,

    Honestly, it’s tempting to look at those 83 or 2006 losses as the biggest disappointments for Oiler fans – the hockey equivalent of the slap shot to the bag. But for me, nothing will equally losing to Calgary in 86. That Game Seven was literally the perfect storm of suck. Bitter arch rival, evil omen own goal, and the hope of immortality (5 in a row) evaporates in one agonizing evening.

    One thing I remember clearly about that night: I had a bunch of my pals over to watch the game (many of them large rugby playing mammals chalk full of beer, testosterone and misery), and for a time, my roomate and I were seriously concerned that the post game might turn into a townhouse trashing. The mood was UGLY.

    F*$king Flames.

  19. Marcus Oilerius says:

    I don’t think Katz is an “empire builder”. He’s a fanboy owner. He dreams of building an empire, but almost every owner dreams of that. What separates the dreamers from the actual empire builders is ability and opportunity. The Oilers have had plenty of opportunity and squandered much of it during the Katz era. Katz was so happy with reliving the old days with the old boys club, and so blinded by a patient fanbase that he didn’t make the moves in management that needed to be made.

    His only real accomplishment is the financing of a proper development system. He also seems to have been woken up from his torpor last season. We have 5 more seasons before Taylor Hall bolts to a winner, or is signed to a team-breaking contract (like Kane/Toews.) With Colorado, St. Louis, and Dallas all being young, good, and on various stages of the upswing, the odds of a Cup in those 5 years are bleak.

    We should be a better team already. Right now, we’re looking at the possibility of making the playoffs for the first time only in Hall’s peak season (age 24). By the time we’re seasoned enough to be contenders, Hall will likely be at the end of his prime.

  20. leadfarmer says:

    Ca$h-Money!,

    Im sure you can spot the difference between the two examples.

  21. Lois Lowe says:

    I blame Katz mostly for that ridiculous trip to Seattle during arena negotiations. It was so see-through, so stupid and yet it played on every Oiler fan’s insecurities from the EOG era. For that he’ll never have my respect.

  22. Invalid Username says:

    Hammers,

    You also probably won’t live long enough to see Corporate Welfare Arena paid off.

  23. Jordan says:

    Marcus Oilerius:
    I don’t think Katz is an “empire builder”.He’s a fanboy owner.He dreams of building an empire, but almost every owner dreams of that.What separates the dreamers from the actual empire builders is ability and opportunity.The Oilers have had plenty of opportunity and squandered much of it during the Katz era.Katz was so happy with reliving the old days with the old boys club, and so blinded by a patient fanbase that he didn’t make the moves in management that needed to be made.

    I beleive that LT was referencing his empire w.r.t. his financial empire. Guy has consistently bought and built more and more with his horse-trading of businesses. Even with the Oilers losing for 8 years, he’s made money. And turned a loser franchise into an exceptionally lucrative managmenet agreement and real-estate development opportunity.

    The fact the Oilers may win something eventually is a cherry on a sunday of locally (sort-of) owned profitable businesses. It’s this empire that’s worth noting – not an NHL team.

  24. wintoon says:

    When the Oilers lost in 1983 there was not a mood of doom and gloom. The franchise was newly minted and most fans were extremely positive. While the loss hurt, fans realized that the Oilers had generational talent in Gretzky, Messier, Kurri, Coffey et al. This changed the focus from “if” to “when”.

    When they ultimately did win the Cup, the outpouring of sheer jubilation was something to behold. Jasper Avenue was swarmed with revelers and, for the most part, there was no hooliganism or craziness. Just fans sharing their incredible excitement and happiness. At that time the team was brash and so was the city. There had been no time to breed cynicism. The franchise was still pure and golden as were the players who had achieved the unthinkable. The had won the Cup in such a short a time period that nobody in Edmonton fully appreciated what they had accomplished. Not the fans, the organization or the MSM.

  25. Ca$h-Money! says:

    leadfarmer:
    Ca$h-Money!,

    Im sure you can spot the difference between the two examples.

    The broader point is that very few teams have the depth to not fall into a hole when/if their 2 best centers are knocked out. I understand Crosby/Malkin are better than RNH/Gordon, but it’s illustrative of the point.

    The penguins are also about 6 miles ahead of the Oil, so the fact that their 3-6 C’s are only marginally stronger than our 3-6 C’s is illustrative of the broader point. I agree we should add at 2C if there is a non-crippling deal there to be made… but saying “oh, how terrible it would be to lose our top 2 Cs” as if this problem is exclusive to the Oilers is a tad melodramatic.

  26. Hammers says:

    Bag of Pucks: Well, I was 17 in 83, was freakin’ obsessed with the Oilers, and losing to the Islanders again, (remember they also lost to them in 6 that wonderful Cinderella season where they topped the mighty Habs with rookie Andy Moog in net) HURT LIKE HELL. If you haven’t read it yet, I highly recommend Terry Jones’ Edmonton Hockey Knights. A lot of great info on the various plotlines that surrounded the team of that time. One aspect of those Dynasty teams that younger fans may fail to appreciate is that there was very real doubt for a number of years (culminating after the loss in 83) as to whether this young team of splendidly skilled players had the heart, grit, fortitude, etc. to actually win a Cup? In reality, they had all of those things in spades, but had not yet built the versatility into their game to win a low scoring defensive game. They would do that the next playoff in the 1-0 win over NYI in Game 1, and there really is no understating the confidence that single game gave the team that they had finally overcome a big hurdle and had what it took to win Lord Stanley’s mug, Honestly, it’s tempting to look at those 83 or 2006 losses as the biggest disappointments for Oiler fans – the hockey equivalent of the slap shot to the bag. But for me, nothing will equally losing to Calgary in 86. That Game Seven was literally the perfect storm of suck. Bitter arch rival, evil omen own goal, and the hope of immortality (5 in a row) evaporates in one agonizing evening.One thing I remember clearly about that night: I had a bunch of my pals over to watch the game (many of them large rugby playing mammals chalk full of beer, testosterone and misery), and for a time, my roomate and I were seriously concerned that the post game might turn into a townhouse trashing. The mood was UGLY. F*$king Flames.

    You have a point and in many ways I agree . I was in my fourties and 83 was just a stepping stone and we reffered to them as carefree group with no idea what it was going to take . We also new or felt they would get there maybe not in Pocklingtons 5 year plan but they where to good not to figure it out and Sather would push , push push . The loss to Calgary in 86 still pisses me off . As Gretzky said there was still lots of time but I felt they justed caved . Remember these are also the Esks years of domination . The 50′s we had the Esks & Oil kings then the Flyers before Wild Bill helped hatch a plan n the 70′s . In the 80′s my Oiler tickets cost $ 2,200.00 for 6 season tickets and I & my family watched some of the best players ever and I don’t just mean the obvious Hall of Fame guys . The truth is that we didn’t deserve to be there in 2006 & without McT outcoaching Detroit we wouldn’t have been . My sons where more pissed than me in 2006 . The truth in my opinion is we have been in the wilderness since the early 90′s with 1 positive blip. Sad !

  27. book¡je says:

    Lois Lowe:
    I blame Katz mostly for that ridiculous trip to Seattle during arena negotiations. It was so see-through, so stupid and yet it played on every Oiler fan’s insecurities from the EOG era. For that he’ll never have my respect.

    He will have to somehow get through with only having your money.

  28. Lois Lowe says:

    book¡je,

    I’m a tier 96 fan. I don’t own any merchandise, only go to out of market games, and illegally stream the rest. He’ll just have to console himself with his taxpayer funded arena.

  29. commonfan14 says:

    Thanks for sharing Hunter, BOHOLOGO, BAG OF PUCKS, WINTOON and HAMMERS. Really interesting to read.

  30. godot10 says:

    1) Katz has plan B in place: Bob Nicholson is positioned to clean house. It might be the Bob NIcholson and Craig Ramsey show by New Years.

    2) MacT could not bring himself to offer a fair contract to his best defensemen (who his entering the prime of his career). The mistakes of the late naughts (not paying Stoll, Torres, Greene, Pitkanen, Glencross, Hejda) echo in this shortsightedness. This is when the team was truly gutted. Jeff Petry may be Andy Dufresne.

    3) Eakins has talked the talk about how he is willing to listen to the opinions and criticisms of others. it will be interesting to see whether he can actually walk the walk when Ramsey and Dellow tell him things that he doesn’t want to hear. I hope the non-disclosure provisions on Dellow’s contract aren’t too restrictive if he gets turfed when Toonces doesn’t like the news that he is a bad driver.

  31. Bag of Pucks says:

    commonfan14:
    Thanks for sharing Hunter, BOHOLOGO, BAG OF PUCKS, WINTOON and HAMMERS.Really interesting to read.

    Np, nice memories for the most part.

    Another point of interest. To win their first Cup, the Oilers couldn’t simply be very good. To usurp that Islander Dynasty, they had to be great.

    There’s no doubt that in this era of salary cap parity, it is difficult to quickly compile all the pieces to win a cup before salary demands tear it apart.

    The challenge pre salary cap however is that teams could build these powerhouse teams, and not only keep them together, but make them stronger over time with additional depth . Those Islander teams of the early 80s were absolutely bulletproof. Not a single weakness to be found. For instance, that 84 NYI squad the Oilers beat had an emerging Pat Lafontaine on their 4th line. That’s akin to the Oilers having Leon on its 4th line. Unbelievable depth to those teams.

  32. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bag of Pucks: F*$king Flames.

    Agreed, that was devastating. I’ve never hated a team with the intensity that I had for those Flames — imagine a defence corps that had ALL of Neil Sheehy, Paul Baxter and Gary Suter on it, three of the scummiest players of the last 50 years. And it was easy to detest guys like Mike Vernon, Jim Peplinski, Doug Risebrough and need I go on? Fugly.

    There was the added intrigue of Cliff Fletcher introducing the anti-4-on-4 rule the previous summer, which allowed those Flames scumbags to thug it up without paying the price of open ice.

    Plus the pure garbage of the series-deciding goal, and another 1-in-1000 fluke scored by Peplinski earlier in Game 7. Oh, and Sheehy banking a clearing pass off a teammate a few minutes after Smith did the same, but having it harmlessly bounce wide. The hockey gods hated us that spring, and the puck did too.

    I have only ever seen that game live, have never been even slightly tempted to watch a replay on NHL Network or whatever. Even at my most dispassionate, I still just wouldn’t be able to handle it. Just the memory is enough to enrage me to this day.

  33. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    What Bruce said!

    I too have that play burned into my brain, but have never seen it once since the original.

    commonfan14: I was too young to know what was going on at the time, but I’d be interested in the recollections of anyone on here sufficiently older than me to describe what the loss in 1983 was like.

    For me anyway (I was in my last year of high school!), much of the pain of that year is washed away by the numerous Cups that soon followed. The loss itself was less painful than shocking. It wasn’t the fact that the team lost, it was the fact that it was the first year where it was clear that the Oiler team really was something special – and they just got dismantled by the Islanders in the final. Total domination.

    That summer was the first time I heard the “Did you hear Grant Fuhr tried to kill himself?” joke. “Whaaaat?” “Yeah – he jumped in front of a bus – but it went between his legs.” It worked, because the magnitude of the loss made the idea not completely unrealistic.

    But the real effect of that loss for me wasn’t the pain of the loss, it was the trepidation the next year – for all their incredible skill and regular season prowess, how good was this team really? Could they win it all?

    The offset to that year was that first win against the Islanders. Not just a win after being swept the previous year, but a 1-0 win, exactly the kind of game no-one thought the Oilers could handle. I remember the feeling of relief after that game – it was like breathing for the first time in a year!

    All of this by the way, is so unlike 2006, which being as it was a painful loss and also the singular Oiler high point for the decade that preceeded it and all the years since, is still like a painful scar oozing pus.

    Oh no, wait, none of that happened – I’m a stats nerd, I don’t actually watch hockey, so of course I couldn’t be bothered to look up from my VisiCalc spreadsheet while all that was happening!

  34. kosiork says:

    #32 makes me sad. Taking a half-day.

  35. Deadman Waiting says:

    Lois Lowe: I’m a tier 96 fan. I don’t own any merchandise, only go to out of market games, and illegally stream the rest. He’ll just have to console himself with his taxpayer funded arena.

    Where do the open-wallet junkies get their methadone fix in the dog days of the longest month? From Lowetide’s poetry, nostalgic greybeard reverie, and a few wise-cracking tier-ninety Waldorfs hectoring from the virtual rafters.

    (Trivia: Statler’s full name is “Statler Hilton”; with eyebrows joined at the dip and his fleshy proboscis dangling over his lower lip—this is before the modern clip and tuck—his youthful acting pretensions crested with an uncredited, chest hair cameo in “Lancelot Loots the Boogar Knights”—so titled as Statler relates the story, though I’m sure Waldorf recalls it differently … on each and every occasion.)

    No worries. When you get to 100 tears, they give you a special pin, even those of us perched upon the cheaper seats. For some reason this ten-to-a-penny body ornament is known as the Purple Hoot.

  36. leadfarmer says:

    Ca$h-Money!,

    Well my point wasnt that Crosby and Malkin are better. My point was that the Oil only need to lose RNH to get to lottery caliber center depth, while the Pens need to lose both. Pens are starting the year knowing who is playing top 6 center, the oil have no idea and out of their current options none of them has played top6 center before.

  37. Lowetide says:

    The Purple Hoot. THAT’S poetry!

  38. Bag of Pucks says:

    Bruce, GMoney. Fair to say that we hated the flames back then, but respected the Isles?

    That’s the way I felt.

    Except for Billy Smith of course. I hated him as much as it’s possible to hate anything.

  39. RexLibris says:

    My take on this whole RE thingy.

    http://flamesnation.ca/2014/8/18/hopes-and-expectations

    The names have been changed to respect proprietary interests…and so that old man Mitchell doesn’t take me out to the woodshed. ;)

  40. G Money says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Ha ha, yeah, respected them, but also hated them to their evil blue core.

    Contrasted with the Flamers, who I simply hated period end stop!

  41. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris:
    My take on this whole RE thingy.

    http://flamesnation.ca/2014/8/18/hopes-and-expectations

    The names have been changed to respect proprietary interests…and so that old man Mitchell doesn’t take me out to the woodshed. ;)

    That’s good stuff, Rex. Excellent article,plus DIRE STRAITS!

  42. Pouzar says:

    Hated the Islanders, Hated the Flames, especially the ’86 Flames.
    Can anyone name the former Canada Cupper who played for the Isles Dynasty and the ’86 Flames?

    Disclosure: Completely forgot he played with the Flames and still can’t picture him in a Flames Jersey. How’s that for compartmentalization!

  43. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Bruce, GMoney. Fair to say that we hated the flames back then, but respected the Isles?

    That’s the way I felt.

    Except for Billy Smith of course. I hated him as much as it’s possible to hate anything.

    I hated Billy Smith so much that many years later I spent an entire period of a Canada-Russia old-timers game heckling him from my favourite seat behind the west net. I think I got to him too. :) Russians scored 7 (!) on him in 5 (!!) minutes to turn a 5-1 Canada lead into an 8-5 deficit, & I was just lapping it up. Not that I was any big fan of the Russians either, but that stationary target was just too inviting.

  44. Lowetide says:

    Pouzar:
    Hated the Islanders, Hated the Flames, especially the ’86 Flames.
    Can anyone name the former Canada Cupper who played for the Isles Dynasty and the ’86 Flames?

    Disclosure: Completely forgot he played with the Flames and still can’t picture him in a Flames Jersey. How’s that for compartmentalization!

    When did John Tonelli go over?

  45. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: When did John Tonelli go over?

    @$$#Ø£∑ Torrey sent him to Calgary at the deadline in ’86.

  46. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: That’s good stuff, Rex. Excellent article,plus DIRE STRAITS!

    Thanks. It was illuminating work, really interesting to dig around and find the information.

    Although, if Extra Skater doesn’t come back I may go through some pretty serious withdrawal symptoms once the season starts.

    And yes, Mark Knopfler. Incredible artist. It was kind of bittersweet using his beautiful music to talk about the Flames. :)

  47. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: @$$#Ø£∑ Torrey sent him to Calgary at the deadline in ’86.

    Bill Torrey is to you what Sam Pollock is to LT, then?

  48. G Money says:

    RexLibris,

    Excellent work. I shall heretofore refer to you as “RL”, in a(n?) homage to OMM (Old Man Mitchell) aka LT.

    But … why you gotta write for de enemy??!?!

  49. jimmers2 says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Bruce, I bet Billy heard you damn well and loved it every one of your screams. He was probably thinking “Hey – I’ve stil got it! AHEYYYY!!!” with collar and thumbs flipped up in the air like the Fonz when the seven goals went by him and went to bed happy with geritol and seven hits of ibuprofen. That Bastard better hurt…

  50. Bag of Pucks says:

    Bruce McCurdy: I hated Billy Smith so much that many years later I spent an entire period of a Canada-Russia old-timers game heckling him from my favourite seat behind the west net. I think I got to him too. Russians scored 7 (!) on him in 5 (!!) minutes to turn a 5-1 Canada lead into an 8-5 deficit, & I was just lapping it up. Not that I was any big fan of the Russians either, but that stationary target was just too inviting.

    Very funny : )

  51. rickithebear says:

    We talk about drafted depth 5 years in.
    Katz took over in 2008
    So 08-09; 09-10; 10-11; 11-12;

    12-13 At this point we should be seeing Players from Katz era draft
    Joining up with the depth from the drafts of the pre Katz Era.
    Player (age) gm pts

    Hall (20) 45 50
    Gagner (23) 48 38
    Eberle (22) 48 37
    Yakupov (18) 48 31
    RNH (19) 40 24
    Hemsky (29) 38 20
    MP (21) 42 16
    Smyth (36) 47 13
    Horcoff (33) 33 12

    A top 9 that averaged
    .226 g/gm per player

    Petrell (28) 35 9 -> 4RW
    R. jones (28) 27 7 – Hendricks
    Belanger (34) 26 3 -> Gordon
    Brown (27) 27 1 -> Gazdic
    Hartikainen (22) 23 3 -> Lander/Pitlick

    J. schultz (22) 48 27
    Whitney (29) 34 13
    Petry (24) 48 12
    N. schultz (30) 48 9
    Fistric (26) 25 6
    Potter (28) 33 4
    Smid (26) 48 4

    Dubnyk-Scrivens
    KHB- Labarbera – Bry- Fasth

    Of the top 9
    Hall; Eberle; Yakupov; RNH
    were retained
    Gagner -> Arco
    Hemsky -> Purcell
    MP -> Perron
    Smyth-> Pouliot
    Horcoff-> Draisatl/Yakimov
    Our top 8 reflects the 6th best G/gm per player rate.
    ANA .263
    EDM .262
    COL .261
    TMP .260
    and the 5th best P/gm per player
    Col .662
    EDM .645
    WSH .633
    PHI .625

    Petrell (28) 35 9 -> Hendricks
    R. jones (28) 27 7 – 4RW
    Belanger (34) 26 3 -> Gordon
    Brown (27) 27 1 -> Gazdic
    Hartikainen (22) 23 3 -> Lander/Pitlick

    Of the D
    Petry; J. schultz retained
    Smid -> Marincin
    Whitney ->Belov -> Nikitin
    N. schultz -> Fayne
    Potter -> Ference
    Fistric-> Fraser-> Aulie

    Dubnyk-Scrivens
    KHB- Labarbera – Bry- Fasth

    AS i have stated .
    In 13 months MacT has Identified and Improved the
    Replaced the subtsandard depth onn our team.
    What we lacked in Org depth from Pocklington adn EIG
    was filled in by Mact.
    The first time since the 05-06 season
    we have competitive depth.

    there seems to be concern Howt a soft minutes 3Cwil survive playing in a top 5 ranked top 9 forward depth.

    Seems to be complaining

    over what is a transition from
    Smid -> Marincin
    Whitney -> Belov->Nikitin
    N. schultz -> Fayne
    Potter -> Ference
    Fistric-> Fraser ->Aulie

    Questions about
    Scrivens and Fasth
    Versu Dubnyk, KHB

    Sure!
    we have Huge problems!

  52. Bruce McCurdy says:

    RexLibris: Bill Torrey is to you what Sam Pollock is to LT, then?

    Actually, I hate Ron “The Professor” Caron more. He sent Joe Mullen, Doug Gilmour, and Rob Ramage to the Flames in 3 separate deals. The first 2 were frickin’ gifts. “Will sell superstar for Beers!”

  53. RexLibris says:

    G Money:
    RexLibris,

    Excellent work.I shall heretofore refer to you as “RL”, in a(n?) homage to OMM (Old Man Mitchell) aka LT.

    But … why you gotta write for de enemy??!?!

    I’ve written for Nations for awhile. FlamesNation is just sort of where I ended up.

    OilersNation is chock full of excellent writers and, really, what am I going to contribute that couldn’t be done better by Jonathan Willis and Mr. Present Company?

    The FlamesNation gig gives me an excellent opportunity to survey a franchise from an outsider’s perspective and work to maintain objectivity at the same time.

    And, you know, keep your friends close… :)

  54. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Actually, I hate Ron “The Professor” Caron more. He sent Joe Mullen, Doug Gilmour, and Rob Ramage to the Flames in 3 separate deals. The first 2 were frickin’ gifts. “Will sell superstar for Beers!”

    Yeah, Fletcher had some good days.

    I’m sure there were more than a few “are you freaking kidding me?!” moments for Flames fans when news would break about some of Sather’s deals.

    So, with regards to Caron then, it would seem that in this case “the friend of my enemy is also my enemy”.

  55. HeavySig says:

    I may be the only Oiler fan in existence who can tolerate the 1986 loss to the Flames without tears. There is still an element of luck in the game and the Flames had some exceptional teams in the 80′s that would have likely hoisted more than one cup if the Oilers hadn’t been in the way. Bob Johnson was savvy enough to develop a system that brought the Oilers down close to their level and they got the flukey bounce they needed. If you can ignore Steve Smith’s own goal (I know), the Flames were in Game 7 for a reason. A protagonist needs an antagonist and if their rivalry is real, the antagonist needs to be capable of winning. To me this stumble was painful, but made the subsequent Stanley Cups an even better story.

    Probably because I had the good fortune of following unusually successful NHL franchises, I didn’t have a problem appreciating other teams and their players. I grew up on the Habs side of the fence in the 70′s and had no hate for the Boston Bruins; if they had ever beat Montreal it may have been different. I mean, who didn’t love Bobby freakin’ Orr? Even when the Habs finally lost, it was tough to mourn since they had such a monopoly on the whole decade. Then the Oilers came along and I hopped aboard another decade of fantastic hockey; but I always reminded myself of how lucky I was just to be around to witness it. I considered the ’82 Miracle on Manchester and the ’83 SCF loss to be just tuition on the way to graduation into the next dynasty.

  56. rickithebear says:

    Sorry big Dan:
    Just read the end of Nelson Post!
    Did not mean to repeat!

  57. edoil1 says:

    Bohologo,

    What alot of Oiler fans forget about the L.A comeback was as I remember,it was still 5-2 Oilers and they kept putting out Gary Unger past his prime for his experience,he promply went out and slashed a guy in the face,got 5,LA scored again,got really going and that was it.I never forgave him for it.
    The Cup loss to NYI was brutal,the Oilers seemed unbeatable,I remember everyone leaving a party with their heads hanging,at least I ended up with a fridge full of beer to drink down my sorrows.But you knew deep down,they would be back,did not dream of 5 cups.Wow

  58. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    I have a twinge of a memory that says Katz stepped in to block a Gagner-Clifford structured trade over salary retention… can anyone recall what level of rumor that was?

    MSM confirmed, or hogwash corner rumblings?

  59. Lowetide says:

    Romulus Apotheosis:
    I have a twinge of a memory that says Katz stepped in to block a Gagner-Clifford structured trade over salary retention… can anyone recall what level of rumor that was?

    MSM confirmed, or hogwash corner rumblings?

    Don’t recall reading any confirmation, but those names were out in the ether at one time.

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

© Copyright - Lowetide.ca