SABRES AT OILERS, G49 2014-15

The Edmonton Oilers can dip into the draft pool during the final 33 games of the season by simply getting Nail Yakupov straightened out. I think it’s reasonable to suggest Todd Nelson could secure an NHL head coaching job by doing it and we saw flashes of a breakout last game. It’s there, it’s in the ether. Watching Nail right now is like watching a mannish boy find his way in life: Frustration after frustration followed by small, painful growth. All you’re really looking for is a spark and youth, determination and skill should light the way. You need that spark.

WHAT WOULD 32 GOOD GAMES LOOK LIKE?

Let’s have a quick look at what Nail’s been doing so far in his NHL career:

  • Boxcars per 82gp based on career previous to this season: 21-20-41
  • Boxcars this season: 48gp, 5-7-12
  • Expected boxcars remainder of season based on previous career numbers: 33gp, 9-8-17
  • Expected boxcars based on this year’s numbers: 33gp, 3-5-8

We don’t have TOI but he appears to be getting reasonable minutes and remember there’s some urgency to get him turning north. I’m going to peg it at 17 points the rest of the season, giving Nail 29 for the year. That’s his average for the previous seasons and there’s no doubt it would show recovery. Is that enough? If Nail ends the season with 81gp, 14-15-29 totals, is that enough to save him? Or is he off to Montreal in a deal for Lars Eller and Dustin Tokarski?

MACTAVISH’S PROCUREMENT RECORD

mact shotInteresting conversation yesterday morning on the blog, I was in at the beginning but couldn’t get back to it because of the radio show. It revolved around my assertion that MacTavish could find another Boyd Gordon in the summer and that the club might consider trading him at the deadline. There are two main points I’d like to make:

  1. MacT’s veteran additions (Gordon, Perron for 1.5 years, Hendricks, Pouliot, Roy, Klinkhammer) at forward have been very good. I think we can trust him to repeat that transaction over and over again.
  2. You don’t trade Gordon if the plan is to push for the playoffs in 2015-16. You’re more likely to look at trading Yakupov to Montreal for Eller and Tokarski, though.
  3. I don’t think the Oilers have been good (for years) in procuring defensemen (Ference, Nikitin, even Fayne a little) via free agency. For that reason, my expectation is they’ll trade for a Phaneuf, Weber or Seabrook this summer.
  4. I like the bet MacT made in goal (Scrivens, Fasth) but don’t expect he’ll take a chance like that again. A Tokarski or Lehner addition could happen at the low end and Antti Niemi is the player type at the high end.

Anyway, MacT has a growing reputation of being able to identify solid veteran forwards. I’d suggest his only blind spot there was Leon Draisaitl and it ended up costing his coach in a big way. I don’t think that mistake will happen again. I have far less confidence in MacT than one year ago and he may never be a good GM. I think he’s a very smart man who has probably learned a lot this year.

WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES!

standing dec 29On December 29 (above) the Oilers are the No. 30 team overall, seven wins and Dallas Eakins is gone baby gone. Worst goal differential in the league and only Carolina is in sight. On that morning, you would have given Edmonton a very good chance at McEichel.

current standing jan 29On January 29 (above) we see the impact of the 5-5-2 run under Todd Nelson. The team is -3 in those games, miles better than the first 36 games and have scored 34-37 under the new coach (2.83-3.08). Previous to Nelson’s arrival those numbers were 2.11-3.42, so despite a downward trend in the possession numbers Edmonton is getting better scoreboard results. The Sabres? Since December 29 they are 0-12-0 and have a goal differential of 17-54. If Taylor Hall can walk, he’ll want to play.

I think the main reason Oilers fans should be happy about this move had to do with prospect development. In OKC, there was pressure to win games and if you give a good coach veterans he’s going to play them. In 2011-12, the rookie seasons for Tyler Pitlick, Curtis Hamilton and others, the Barons ran with so many veterans the mind boggles. Yann Danis (30) in goal, Bryan Helmer (39) and Bryan Rodney (27) on defense and forwards Josh Green (33), Ryan Keller (27) and Tristan Grant (27) all took significant at-bats away from prospects. As well, players sent down (Lenny Petrell, Gilbert Brule) also impacted things.

In fairness, Craig MacTavish has already changed much in this area. To compare, let’s look at  a successful NHL team. This season, the Detroit Red Wings 20-year old kids are all getting their minor league at-bats:

  • Anthony Mantha 30gp, 6-7-13
  • Andreas Athanasiou 25gp, 7-9-16
  • Martin Frk 9gp, 1-0-1 (and then 22gp, 15-12-27 in ECHL)

Notice that Frk, a highly-touted prospect on draft day, struggled in the AHL for playing time so was sent to the ECHL. Let’s look at the 20-year old Barons:

  • Bogdan Yakimov 38gp, 6-11-17
  • Josh Winquist 16gp, 4-4-8  (after going 18gp, 5-18-23 in ECHL)
  • Jujhar Khaira 38gp, 5-2-7
  • Mitchell Moroz 33gp, 0-3-3

Moroz should be in the ECHL—not to humiliate but to develop—but after that I think we can be satisfied the current system under MacT is allowing enough at-bats for everyone. It’s an important item, I do believe Oilers kids were squeezed in the past and it impacted their development. It’s also interesting to see that Yakimov is in the range with the two quality kids in the Wings system. Winquist could be an exceptional find, well done Bob Green. The emphasis on prospect development should only improve in Bakersfield.

hennessey9

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Interesting lineup today, I can’t wait for this one. TSN1260 at 10, scheduled to appear:

  • Dennis King will discuss the Oilers—Sabres and Super Bowl weekend. We’ll try to find time to make a list of blue for MacT, including Weber and Seabrook.
  • Brian King, NonStop Sports Picks. We’ll talk Super Bowl and CFL offseason.
  • Paul Brown, 100.3 The Bear. Legendary broadcaster drops in to discuss his career and his love of sports. Epic!
  • Corey Graham, TSN1260. Oil Kings won last night against Kelowna. We’ll chat Leon, Jarry and the playoffs.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide_ on twitter and make sure to follow @Lieutenant_Eric because he’s cool. See you on the radio!

written by

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

337 Responses to "SABRES AT OILERS, G49 2014-15"

Newer Comments »
  1. Hammers says:

    Would you consider bringing back D.D. to play with Scrivens . It’s obvious there showcasing Fasth . DD has bounced back and actually making McT’s “D” decisions seem to be what they have been . Bad

  2. Lowetide says:

    Hammers:
    Would you consider bringing back D.D. to play with Scrivens . It’s obvious there showcasing Fasth . DD has bounced back and actually making McT’s “D” decisions seem to be what they have been . Bad

    I can’t imagine Dubnyk coming back, can you? But sure, I always liked him and AsiaOil tracked him good from draft day.

  3. smellyglove says:

    Hammers,

    If I’m DD I play the Oilers to get a better deal somewhere else, and then laugh at the team that flushed him as they’ll continue to languish. Having said that, I was on the flush DD bandwagon and I’d take him back.

  4. Aitch says:

    “not to humiliate but to develop” – It’s funny how in baseball, all but the most elite of prospects are expected to start at the lowest level and work their way up. In hockey there seems to be a mentality (amongst fans at least) that the AHL is the starting ground. If you can’t make it there, you’re probably not going to make it at all. If anything, all prospects, once turning pro should start in the ECHL and only move up to the A once they’ve proven they can handle the first level of pro hockey.

    On a related note, tonights game should look like an AHL-ECHL battle.

  5. TheOtherJohn says:

    Epic battle between two truly awful teams. Season cannot end soon enough. Great to see POHO K Lowe travel to California for AHL west announcement. Guess the forensic audit confirmed he’s doing a great job.

    If MacT is doing such a great job with veteran forward procurement why are we playing a game tonight to determine DFL?

  6. Lowetide says:

    TheOtherJohn:
    If MacT is doing such a great job with veteran forward procurement why are we playing a game tonight to determine DFL?

    He hasn’t fixed the defense despite adding Ference, Fayne and Nikitin and the goaltending sewered the season.

  7. Concur says:

    Tonight’s game is a must lose. I have never ever been a proponent of tanking, I like Calgary’s mentality (bad taste in my mouth). I don’t want Edmonton to try to tank this year (or anyother year), but losing tonight will keep the ELPH interesting.

  8. Hammers says:

    Getting Yak and Lander to be able to contribute at the NHL level would give Nelson a feather in his cap so to speak . As for points and position its to hard to tell due to Arizona , Jersey , Philly ,Carolina’s trades . I still think we should target Philly now for a major deal . A “C” , a “D” & a 3rd for Eberle , Petry & a Davidson or Marincin .

  9. Bobbin Roundlee says:

    @Lowetide I love how you see Yakupov. Unlike some others who when they don’t get immediate gratification are ready to dump a player dreaming that anyone else’s trash is better than what the Oil have you are able to see the long term picture.

    There are those who learn quickly. Show them something once or twice and they immediately get it.

    Yakupov I believe is in the other camp. It takes a while for everything to click. Lots and lots of repetition and mistakes but they slowly trend upwards. Once they finally do get it they are absolute masters of what they toiled for.

    If anything that young player shows more hard work and determination than anyone who currently plays on the Oilers. Imagine how Eberle would look if he applied himself like Yak.

    This young man will excel and I truly hope that he is given enough time that he does it here and not with another team. He truly is a diamond in the rough.

  10. Concur says:

    Hammers,

    I always thought that Dubnyk had a bad year and he had bad defense in front of him. I was happy to see him get another chance and make the most of it. I would not come back if I was Dubnyk, MacT burned that bridge.

  11. Concur says:

    Lowetide: He hasn’t fixed the defense despite adding Ference, Fayne and Nikitin and the goaltending sewered the season.

    I know that the goal tending was not the greatest at the start of the season but I think that can also be blamed on lack of defensive awareness by the rest of the team. Both have improved since the season started.

  12. Hammers says:

    Lowetide: I can’t imagine Dubnyk coming back, can you? But sure, I always liked him and AsiaOil tracked him good from draft day.

    No as McT would loose face but he should be one of the goalies they consider if the Stars keep winning with him in net .

  13. oliveoilers says:

    MacT loves him some Marty Reasoner!

  14. Hammers says:

    Bobbin Roundlee:
    @Lowetide I love how you see Yakupov. Unlike some others who when they don’t get immediate gratification are ready to dump a player dreaming that anyone else’s trash is better than what the Oil have you are able to see the long term picture.

    There are those who learn quickly. Show them something once or twice and they immediately get it.

    Yakupov I believe is in the other camp. It takes a while for everything to click. Lots and lots of repetition and mistakes but they slowly trend upwards. Once they finally do get it they are absolute masters of what they toiled for.

    If anything that young player shows more hard work and determination than anyone who currently plays on the Oilers. Imagine how Eberle would look if he applied himself like Yak.

    This young man will excel and I truly hope that he is given enough time that he does it here and not with another team. He truly is a diamond in the rough.

    Totally agree and that’s why I would trade Eberle before Yak if a decision hasto be made . You also get more for Eberle right now .

  15. murray says:

    LT any chance the oilers would trade Gordon to the Blues for the rights to Sobotka. Do you think the Blues would do it?

  16. Clay says:

    “I like the bet MacT made in goal (Scrivens, Fasth) but don’t expect he’ll take a chance like that again. A Tokarski or Lehner addition could happen at the low end and Antti Niemi is the player type at the high end.”

    Wouldn’t aquiring Tokarski or Lehner be exactly the same as getting Scrivens and Fasth? Unproven guys with #1 potential, but with question marks. This would be running in place for the team, and could cost MacT his job if they struggle.

    I also agree with the rest, DD wouldn’t come back here. ESPECIALLY if he does well in Minny. He’s going to have value around the league, and why would he go back to the place where he almost lost his career?

    There is only three real options for MacT:

    1) Break the bank (and asset pool) for a legit, proven #1. Won’t be easy, won’t be cheap.

    2) Build such a strong blueline that you can get away with a #1b / #2a option in net (see: the Ken Holland theory on goaltenders). This option will also be difficult. It would involve getting two dmen better than anyone on the current roster, and three if they let Petry go.

    3) Do neither, and keep sucking. If past history is a predictor of future results, this is the likely plan of attack.

  17. dustrock says:

    I don’t blame Mac T for his gambles on the goaltending. Really seems to me that outside of 5-6 goalies we have no chance of acquiring, many starters are “replacement level” and have their ups and downs. Fasth had good stats in relatively few appearances, Scrivens looked much improved in LA with Ranford as his goalie coach (go figure).

    The D have been the biggest question marks. Belov wasn’t a bad idea for a low cost. Garbagekov was washed up in the KHL, not sure what Mac T was thinking. Not signing Petry to at least 1 more year. Pumping the tires of Schultz when he hadn’t given any reason for that kind of praise. Signing Nikitin, who was a healthy scratch on a low playoff seed team in the East. Then guys like Fraser – I guess that’s Eakins trying to bring in some Marlies.

    Fayne I was actually pushing for and he’s been a bit of a disappointment but I think everyone more or less unanimously praised that signing.

    I like the forward additions because he’s got some solid NHL roster wingers who are ready to go, more or less completing the forward spots, that is, if you believe in the core players.

    The D additions have all been bottom pairing guys, and I don’t know if he expected Schultz, Marincin and Klefbom to be playing at a top 4 level by now, but that’s pretty scary if he really believed it.

  18. Woodguy says:

    I have to take this opportunity to point out this thread from December 11th.

    BUF was in their midst of unsustainable goaltending (which I pointed out) and I was barraged with how PDO doesn’t regress from various posters and Godot told me that Nolan was the reason BUF’s goalies were great.

    https://lowetide.ca/2014/12/11/take-a-knee/

    Uh…Nolan and goaltender confidence. You did see how that Latvian plug played against the best team ever assembled in Team Canada at the Olympics. What about turning around a Hasek, who struggled terribly in Chicago, to superhuman in Buffalo. Nolan also road a mediocre Osgood to the playoffs with a horrid Islanders team.
    Goaltenders stop pucks for Nolan. They don’t for Eakins.

    Then on January 13th BUF GM Tim Murray was interviewed and was asked about that hot streak:

    He said:

    “No. I think that we played well. I think that we played hard. But the analytics were basically all the same. Our shooting percentage got higher in those wins. I don’t want to think completely on that, but the numbers were pretty close to the same as when we lost other than save percentage and shooting percentage. So if you follow that at all you understand, and is that sustainable is the question you have to ask yourself. I answered it to myself and the people in my office, but that didn’t change my outlook on this year, no.”

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=748304&navid=nhl:topheads

    I’ll just be sitting over here in the hot tub of validation drinking a pint of “I told you so”

    Haha!

  19. dustrock says:

    The thing about Eberle is the turnover against the Wild. It wasn’t even the stupid pass at a critical moment of a 1-1 game in the 3rd, as much as the fact that he’s barely gliding back on D.

    I don’t want or expect the offensively talented players to sacrifice scoring to become “two-way” players, but some nights you look and the effort isn’t there. I’m sure guys like Ference are saying ” you need to bring it every single night as a professional” and I’m not sure we see that all the time with the core.

  20. oliveoilers says:

    There are two main points I’d like to make:
    1.MacT’s veteran additions (Gordon, Perron for 1.5 years, Hendricks, Pouliot, Roy, Klinkhammer) at forward have been very good. I think we can trust him to repeat that transaction over and over again.
    2.You don’t trade Gordon if the plan is to push for the playoffs in 2015-16. You’re more likely to look at trading Yakupov to Montreal for Eller and Tokarski, though.
    3.I don’t think the Oilers have been good (for years) in procuring defensemen (Ference, Nikitin, even Fayne a little) via free agency. For that reason, my expectation is they’ll trade for a Phaneuf, Weber or Seabrook this summer.
    4.I like the bet MacT made in goal (Scrivens, Fasth) but don’t expect he’ll take a chance like that again. A Tokarski or Lehner addition could happen at the low end and Antti Niemi is the player type at the high end.

    LT, can we pick any two? 😉

    I can see them using the ‘last time we were any good we traded for Pronger’ logic. We DO need a legit D man. Phaneuf might be interesting; remember folks, three years left. By that time I would fully expect him to be #4 or 5 dman on this team. He would give us breathing room, be a fairly cheap (asset wise) to attain, be overpaid, but most of all, he’s not NN.

    I speculated that I would like to see the Pitts pick as the centre piece of a Tokarski/Eller trade a few days ago. But that would be a summer deal after the playoffs.

  21. Woodguy says:

    VOR,

    Saw your posts yesterday and I’d like to address them.

    No time until Saturday to sit down and do it though.

    When I have time I’ll address it.

    One qucik thing about David Johnson’s cosri/fenwick over the years.

    I don’t think we can use one year to predict another due to player changes, coaching changes etc.

    I only use in-season crosi/fenwick to predict the rest of the season (tempered as always by PDO)

    Also, the study about the last 20 game predicting playoff success was a private one with some people with similar gambling interests as mine.

    Basically if you take the SAF or SAC of the last 20 games and then bet on playoff series using that info you do fairly well.

    Last year it ran at 70% win rate, which is ridiculous. I think they number we had over 7 years was 58%, win rate which is still killing it.

    When the season ends I’ll post the list this year and we can see how it does.

  22. Hammers says:

    LT I said yesterday I see a trend coming when we discuss veterans and there tradeabilty . Perron was the first to go . Right now for me our vets are Gordon , Pouliot , Hall , Eberle , Purcell and Hendricks with all our “D” save Klefbom and Fasth in goal. I’m not saying we don’t have other good players both here & coming but once they hit that 5 year mark they should be considered vets and evaluated that way . Trade Value should come from your vets and not the rookies or players on the cusp . When your an annual bottom 5 team you have to look to trading the vets if you want to grow and that’s why I expect a changeover in our veteran makeup . I’m not saying all of them but some need to be changed .

  23. oliveoilers says:

    Woodguy:
    I have to take this opportunity to point out this thread from December 11th.

    BUF was in their midst of unsustainable goaltending (which I pointed out) and I was barraged with how PDO doesn’t regress from various posters and Godot told me that Nolan was the reason BUF’s goalies were great.

    https://lowetide.ca/2014/12/11/take-a-knee/

    Uh…Nolan and goaltender confidence. You did see how that Latvian plug played against the best team ever assembled in Team Canada at the Olympics. What about turning around a Hasek, who struggled terribly in Chicago, to superhuman in Buffalo. Nolan also road a mediocre Osgood to the playoffs with a horrid Islanders team.
    Goaltenders stop pucks for Nolan. They don’t for Eakins.

    Then on January 13th BUF GM Tim Murray was interviewed and was asked about that hot streak:

    He said:

    “No. I think that we played well. I think that we played hard. But the analytics were basically all the same. Our shooting percentage got higher in those wins. I don’t want to think completely on that, but the numbers were pretty close to the same as when we lost other than save percentage and shooting percentage. So if you follow that at all you understand, and is that sustainable is the question you have to ask yourself. I answered it to myself and the people in my office, but that didn’t change my outlook on this year, no.”

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=748304&navid=nhl:topheads

    I’ll just be sitting over here in the hot tub of validation drinking a pint of “I told you so”

    Haha!

    So, by that logic, trade everyone for a shit-hot goalie and three guys that average 10 shots a game. The rest can be filler from the AHL whose only job is to line up soccer-wall style in front of the goalie when the three snipers are on a line change? Lol, I should try this in NHL15. If I played video games!

    Note: Darryl, Kevin and Craig, I work a compacted work week and have every Fri, Sat and Sun off. I’m available for consultation and will work for some of those magic beans you have a lot of. That Dellow guy don’t know nuthin’, no how!

  24. Bobbin Roundlee says:

    dustrock:
    The thing about Eberle is the turnover against the Wild.It wasn’t even the stupid pass at a critical moment of a 1-1 game in the 3rd, as much as the fact that he’s barely gliding back on D.

    This is exactly the reason why I think a player like Yakupov is more valuable to the Oilers than Eberle. Yakupov is moving forward even if it is at a glacial pace but he is trying damnit!!!

    Eberle has never been punished or benched to my recollection and these lazy back checking habits are ingrained in him. Trade Eberle and get value for him while his value is high.

  25. LMHF#1 says:

    dustrock:
    The thing about Eberle is the turnover against the Wild.It wasn’t even the stupid pass at a critical moment of a 1-1 game in the 3rd, as much as the fact that he’s barely gliding back on D.

    I don’t want or expect the offensively talented players to sacrifice scoring to become “two-way” players, but some nights you look and the effort isn’t there.I’m sure guys like Ference are saying ” you need to bring it every single night as a professional” and I’m not sure we see that all the time with the core.

    Ference should stop worrying about yip-yap and study how to play basic D again. Go look at where he is on that play. Massively stupid decision.

  26. Bruce McCurdy says:

    oliveoilers: Phaneuf might be interesting; remember folks, three years left.

    If by “three” you mean “six”, then yes.

    NHLNumbers defaults to the end of the 2017-18 season, you need to hit “expand” or “show more years” to see the full meal deal. I wish they would show an arrow or something to show contracts that continue on out of the frame.

    That’s 6 years (not counting what’s left of this one) at a $7 MM cap hit.

  27. TheOtherJohn says:

    Lowetide,

    We agree to disagree. If Derek Roy and Klinkhammer are on your CV as accomplishments, yo should clean out your desk

  28. Showerhead says:

    Bobbin Roundlee: This is exactly the reason why I think a player like Yakupov is more valuable to the Oilers than Eberle. Yakupov is moving forward even if it is at a glacial pace but he is trying damnit!!!

    Eberle has never been punished or benched to my recollection and these lazy back checking habits are ingrained in him. Trade Eberle and get value for him while his value is high.

    I like Yak and I support Yak and I want them to keep Yak around for all of the reasons you mention… But Jordan Eberle is Edmonton’s best RW and trading him would leave a gaping hole. This isn’t something you said but “Too many good players” is not exactly one of Edmonton’s problems.

    Now, of course I don’t deny Eberle’s backchecking issues. Coach those, don’t trade them.

    Kind of a shame, hey? Pure speculation but I can’t help but think Eberle might be more inclined to play a 200ft game if he had played even one meaningful NHL game to this point in his career.

  29. oliveoilers says:

    Bruce McCurdy: If by “three” you mean “six”, then yes.

    NHLNumbers defaults to the end of the 2017-18 season, you need to hit “expand” or “show more years” to see the full meal deal. I wish they would show an arrow or something to show contracts that continue on out of the frame.

    That’s 6 years (not counting what’s left of this one) at a $7 MM cap hit.

    Thanks Bruce. I think I was just a little bit sick in my mouth reading that contract…..Maybe if we can package him with M Richards and Semin? (Go big or go home, lol)

  30. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bobbin Roundlee: Imagine how Eberle would look if he applied himself like Yak.

    Yeah he might have 3x as many points as Yak instead of only 2.4x as many. Lazy bastard.

  31. Bruce McCurdy says:

    oliveoilers: Thanks Bruce.I think I was just a little bit sick in my mouth reading that contract…..Maybe if we can package him with M Richards and Semin?(Go big or go home, lol)

    That DiPietro kid might solve our netminding woes too.

  32. oliveoilers says:

    Bobbin Roundlee: This is exactly the reason why I think a player like Yakupov is more valuable to the Oilers than Eberle. Yakupov is moving forward even if it is at a glacial pace but he is trying damnit!!!

    Eberle has never been punished or benched to my recollection and these lazy back checking habits are ingrained in him. Trade Eberle and get value for him while his value is high.

    Dude, punishment is the absolute LAST resort a good leader. If you have to fall back on it, there rarely is a way back to how things were. Punishment infers that what was done, was done with malice a forethought.

    Is Eberle filling the Hemsky narrative for many fans now?

  33. Pouzar says:

    By eye, Eberle is not the same guy of 2 years ago. Something is amiss.
    I will bet my house he still isn’t anywhere near 100%.

  34. Diesel says:

    I think the best course of action is to do nothing until the new arena is ready and assume everything will be great by then.

  35. Bobbin Roundlee says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Yeah he might have 3x as many points as Yak instead of only 2.4x as many. Lazy bastard.

    Instant gratification. A great way to plan for the future?

  36. Unicorns says:

    I’m mixed On Eberle. He obviously is a talented finisher, but I’m not convinced he warrants being carried. He’s not Kurri after all, and Kurri did the defensive work for Gretzky.

    I think I lean to the sell high camp, Yak can do what he does if he had the minutes and given a half season to get used to Hall and Nuge. Yak has more aspects to his game – physical, fearless, big shot, he tries both ways.

  37. RexLibris says:

    Going to the Buffalo game tonight.

    Excited to see the comic musings of Niki Yortuk and Georg Jultz.

    They are two wild and crazy guys!

  38. RexLibris says:

    Pouzar:
    By eye, Eberle is not the same guy of 2 years ago. Something is amiss.
    I will bet my house he still isn’t anywhere near 100%.

    shhh, don’t let them know you live in a van down by the river.

    😉

  39. slopitch says:

    Eberle had 76 points in year 2 and we are talking about yak salvaging a season to get 29 PTs here. And we want Eberle to be more like yak?

    I’m all for yak saving the season and he’s looked good the last couple games. But the only reason you consider moving Ebs is because of the gaping hole on D, not because he doesn’t try hard enough.

  40. Pouzar says:

    I love how the people slag on Eberle in one breath and say they wanna “sell high” in another.
    I love RNH, He’s my fav player. But some of the narratives around Jordan Eberle make we want to kill kittens.

  41. Pouzar says:

    RexLibris: shhh, don’t let them know you live in a van down by the river.

    Worse….down by the Red River. 🙂

  42. Lowetide says:

    Diesel:
    I think the best course of action is to do nothing until the new arena is ready and assume everything will be great by then.

    Thanks for dropping in, Mr. Katz. 🙂

  43. dustrock says:

    LMHF#1: Ference should stop worrying about yip-yap and study how to play basic D again. Go look at where he is on that play. Massively stupid decision.

    I wasn’t talking about Ference or the overall defensive play. I was talking specifically about Eberle on that play. It’s just a thing some have noticed, that Eberle takes shifts or nights off. He has a lot of value to this team, but if we’re talking about moving any members of the core, it’s gotta be him.

  44. oliveoilers says:

    Diesel:
    I think the best course of action is to do nothing until the new arena is ready and assume everything will be great by then.

    Yes, the opening night anthem should be the ‘Everything is Awesome’ song from the Lego Movie, in which everybody spends all day building to the ‘plan’ then knocks it all down to begin again tomorrow with a smile on your face!

  45. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: Thanks for dropping in, Mr. Katz.

    I think that was LaForge. Katz sticks to full page ads when he communicates with 2nd tier fans.

  46. Bag of Pucks says:

    Showerhead

    Now, of course I don’t deny Eberle’s backchecking issues. Coach those, don’t trade them.

    Kind of a shame, hey? Pure speculation but I can’t help but think Eberle might be more inclined to play a 200ft game if he had played even one meaningful NHL game to this point in his career.

    Eberle gets paid $6mil per season to play hockey. If he’s a true professional, where the team is in the standings should be immaterial to his effort.

    I’ll never understand fans making excuses for a lack of effort. It’s the one factor that is solely in the player’s control. When they give less than a full effort, they shortchange the fans, the team and themselves.

    By your logic, Eberle was a two way back checking demon at the start of the season when the pts still mattered?

    As far as coaching this out of them, do you honestly think he didn’t know that he’s supposed to backcheck with full effort on that play? He didn’t give it the full effort cos he didn’t want to.

    That is not championship mettle. That is being a floater. Gagner redux.

    He doesn’t do it ALL the time but he does it enough to be in the bottom 20 of the league in +/-

    If Jordan’s seriously tired of losing, Jordan should play harder.

  47. russ99 says:

    Alright – before the Super Bowl, we have the McDavid Bowl!

    Man, I’m sick of these race to the bottom games. Hope this one is the last.

    As for Eberle, he’s proven he can score at the NHL level.

    Last time I checked, our coach that expected every player to play exactly the same is now gone.

    Some lack of backchecking is acceptable if he helps the team in other ways.

    IMO a coach’s role is to accentuate the player’s strengths and find ways to not let their weaknesses be exposed.

    This isn’t some kind of remedial hockey organization where any individualism and creativity has to be squashed to turn all players into “200 foot game” robots.

    I’m only advocating an Eberle trade since he has the most value of our players that could be moved without crippling the team, i.e. RNH and Hall.

    And that should be for as close to a franchise defenseman as we can get, not to add “Johnny Lunchpail” third line forwards so we can check our opponents into oblivion.

  48. Diesel says:

    Lowetide: Thanks for dropping in, Mr. Katz.

    Carry on!

    I’ll take your suggestions and theories to heart.

    (Where they will die)

  49. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    “If Jordan’s seriosly tired of losing, Jordan should play harder.”

    When do you pick up your ‘Sports Psychologist of the Year’ award?

    It’s also been a while since anyone dared bring up +/- on this site.

  50. oliveoilers says:

    Diesel: Carry on!

    I’ll take your suggestions and theories to heart.

    (Where they will die)

    Mr Katz, you have no heart. You’re the guy the Zeitgeist movie was talking about!

  51. rickithebear says:

    Mantha 30 GM 3EVG 3PPG 6EVA 1EVA .3 EVP/gm
    Athanansiou 25GP 6EVG 1SHG 9EVA .60 EVP/gm

    Yakimov 38gm 5 EVG 11 EVA .42 EVP/gm

  52. dustrock says:

    In a perfect world, Rexall would get like 3,000 people coming out for tonight’s game. Not going to happen obviously.

  53. Bag of Pucks says:

    oliveoilers:
    Bag of Pucks,

    It’s also been a while since anyone dared bring up +/- on this site.

    Funny. GMoney and I discussed it yesterday. Didn’t seem that long ago….

  54. Rocknrolla says:

    oliveoilers: Yes, the opening night anthem should be the ‘Everything is Awesome’ song from the Lego Movie, in which everybody spends all day building to the ‘plan’ then knocks it all down to begin again tomorrow with a smile on your face!

    Yes This! ^^

    That would be hilarious….funny but it does seem like that is the plan??

  55. Bag of Pucks says:

    oliveoilers:
    Bag of Pucks,

    “If Jordan’s seriosly tired of losing, Jordan should play harder.”

    When do you pick up your ‘Sports Psychologist of the Year’ award?

    Given you’re such an expert, how do you weed this element out of Jordan’s game?

    Word of warning. We’re 4 1/2 years into Jordan’s professional career. He doesn’t appear to be a particularly attentive student on the nuanced subject of the 200 ft game

  56. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Shea Weber was -2 last year. He is +18 at the moment. That right there tells you all you need to know about using -/+ as anything remotely useful in grading individual performance.

    This is known, and has been known for quite a while. Hence the search for more accurate predictors and the birth of analytics within hockey.

  57. Bag of Pucks says:

    oliveoilers:
    Bag of Pucks,

    Shea Weber was -2 last year.He is +18 at the moment.That right there tells you all you need to know about using -/+ as anything remotely useful in grading individual performance.

    This is known, and has been known for quite a while.Hence the search for more accurate predictors and the birth of analytics within hockey.

    As deep and penetrating as that analysis is, I think I’ll defer to Gmoney’s more ‘scientific’ approach.

    Thanks for the enlightenment!

  58. russ99 says:

    LT:

    FYI, I’m getting a super-weird “update your browser” page redirect when accessing this page from my desktop.

    Isn’t happening on iPad, that’s what I’m writing this on.

  59. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks: Given you’re such an expert, how do you weed this element out of Jordan’s game?

    Word of warning. We’re 4 1/2 years into Jordan’s professional career. He doesn’t appear to be a particularly attentive student on the nuanced subject of the 200 ft game.

    Given you’re such an expert, how do you weed this element out of Jordan’s game?

    Word of warning. We’re 4 1/2 years into Jordan’s professional career. He doesn’t appear to be a particularly attentive student on the nuanced subject of the 200 ft game.

    I never claimed to be an expert. You did when you made such sweeping statements as “I’ll never understand fans making excuses for a lack of effort. It’s the one factor that is solely in the player’s control. When they give less than a full effort, they shortchange the fans, the team and themselves.” and “That is not championship mettle. That is being a floater. Gagner redux.”

    You are demonising a player that made a mistake, one you admit “He doesn’t do it ALL the time but he does it enough to be in the bottom 20 of the league in +/-.”

    What ever the problems the Oilers have, Jordan Eberle isn’t one of them. Lazy back check, whatever; this is up to the coach to talk to him about.

    On the other hand, burn him, he’s a witch!

  60. rickithebear says:

    Khaira W/
    Gazdic-Kesey-Moroz-Ewanyk-Ford
    22 Gm 1 EVG 2 EVA -11 .14 PPG

    Winquist- R HAM – C Ham
    9gm 4EVA +9 .44 PPG

    Yak-PAk
    2gm 0g 0A Even

    Joneses
    2gm 0g 0a Even

    3Gm not sure

    I am realy worried about his Performance when he has to play with
    Gazdic-Ewanyk- Moroz – Kessey
    LOL!

    Otherwise he is a +ve player generating a decent EVPPG @ 20 in AHL

  61. The Artist formerly known as "NYCOIL" says:

    This is the Wooden Spoon Cup.
    How many times this season has the line on an Oilers game had them as favorites?
    I hope the Oilers don’t play “down” to their opposition. Ha ha ha. How many times do we get to say that?

    You know, when Hemsky and Gilbert left town I did wonder who was going to be the favorite scapegoat next. I did think it was going to be Eberle and Schultz. However, I was wrong about Schultz. He isn’t unjustifiably tarred and feathered at all. He’s been terrible. I was worried all summer but this has been beyond bad.

    I actually think that LT, you’re missing a significant item here. You’ve discussed Yakupov and Lander: “If Nelson can fix them, that’s a win.” I would say it is at least as important to see if Nelson can unravel the mystery that is Justin Schultz. Jultz has the tools. I am hopeful and think there’s a better than 50/50 chance that Nelson can help transform Schultz into a Nick Leddy-type. (And yes, I still hate that contract).

    Also, on MacT: he seems good at identifying MacT-types. Those are necessary for any team. However, he is bad at identifying goalies, attacking centres, and defensemen. Kevin Lowe used to be able to find good defenseman out of his ass crack. They should consult with him on that one subject (and that one alone). And then find men who can find good goalies and offensive centres.

  62. Ribs says:

    WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES!

    Kind of makes you wonder if the biggest mistake MacT will have made this season was dismissing Eakins and slowing the burn. I cringe a little bit every time I hear “generational” and McEichel together knowing that the Oilers will likely (just) miss out on both of them.

    COME ON LOTTERY!

  63. rickithebear says:

    oliveoilers: Shea Weber was -2 last year. He is +18 at the moment. That right there tells you all you need to know about using -/+ as anything remotely useful in grading individual performance.

    13- 14 Weber -2 2.79 EVGA/60
    14-15 Weber +18 1.95 EVGA/60

    WHATS YOUR PROBLEM!

  64. The Artist formerly known as "NYCOIL" says:

    russ99:
    LT:

    FYI, I’m getting a super-weird “update your browser” page redirect when accessing this page from my desktop.

    Isn’t happening on iPad, that’s what I’m writing this on.

    What browser are you on? IE? A lot of the newer websites now don’t work with IE8 or earlier. Try Chrome or an IE update and you should be fine.

  65. The Artist formerly known as "NYCOIL" says:

    rickithebear: 13- 14 Weber -22.79 EVGA/60
    14-15 Weber +18 1.95 EVGA/60

    WHATS YOUR PROBLEM!

    How much of that difference is Pekka Rinne?

  66. G Money says:

    oliveoilers,
    Bag of Pucks,

    Oh oh, BoP referenced a previous posting of mine – this makes me nervous, you guys aren’t supposed to remember previous threads, that might mean at some point all of us have to be accountable for the things we say … YOU ARE PLAYING WITH FIRE HERE!!!!

    The discussion on +- was a couple of threads ago (in the blog world, one thread = one internet year, so I guess it is accurate to say we haven’t talked about it for a couple of years).

    I’ll post it below for the record.

    Summary: +- is justly maligned when used on a short term basis because it is a very noisy stat and has pretty much no short term value. Your Shea Weber example demonstrates that.

    On the other hand, +- is unjustly maligned as a stat on a long term basis – though it is indeed noisy, sample size is the cure for all things noise. When flipping coins, you get enough coin flips under your belt and you will be able to distinguish a coin that is even 1% biased.

    Sample size! When you start getting up to a season or more, and assess it for patterns over multiple seasons, the +- stat does have validity IMO.

    On Eberle:
    – I think he doesn’t get enough credit for his talent sometimes. Sick hands on that boy.
    – I think this year our perception of him is tainted by the fact that pretty much the entire team is in the offensive doldrums, not just him. And I do think he is playing injured, or at least sub 100%, much like Hall. Only RNH is healthy and strong, yay Nuge.
    – Conversely, I think it’s also fair to criticize him for his two-way effort, defensive coverage and backchecking both.

    All of these things (talented, in a slump, needs to get better defensively) can be true without impugning the value of Jordan Leslie Eberle. (Who I’m a big fan of, for the record)

  67. Bar_Qu says:

    Rondo:
    Latest rankings 2015mock draft.

    http://www.mynhldraft.com/2015-draft/prospect-rankings/

    Some team is going to get burned and badly by the Crouse pick. I hope it doesn’t derail the kid’s future though. No way he is a top 10 pick, or even a top 30. Yeesh.

  68. Bruce McCurdy says:

    dustrock: The thing about Eberle is the turnover against the Wild. It wasn’t even the stupid pass at a critical moment of a 1-1 game in the 3rd, as much as the fact that he’s barely gliding back on D.

    Bobbin Roundlee: Eberle has never been punished or benched to my recollection and these lazy back checking habits are ingrained in him. Trade Eberle and get value for him while his value is high.

    Bag of Pucks:

    Eberle gets paid $6mil per season to play hockey. If he’s a true professional, where the team is in the standings should be immaterial to his effort.

    dustrock: I wasn’t talking about Ference or the overall defensive play. I was talking specifically about Eberle on that play. It’s just a thing some have noticed, that Eberle takes shifts or nights off. He has a lot of value to this team, but if we’re talking about moving any members of the core, it’s gotta be him.

    Boy am I ever getting the Jason Arnott / Tom Poti / Tom Gilbert vibe reading this post. Folks complain regularly about those guys getting run out of town, but it’s still open season.

    Let’s have a look at that goal, shall we?

    1) Eberle was double shifting on Lander’s line because Luke Gazdic can’t be trusted with meaningful ice time. So he had just played a 1 minute shift, took a 58 second rest, and was back out for another shift with irregular linemates.

    2) Eberle brings the puck up the (a.k.a. “his”) right side of the ice, sees his centre burst up the outside, by the boards, and slips him what should have been a routine, but perfect, pass.

    3) Matt Fraser, the Left wing, coasts right into the passing lane by the right wing boards for what my exhaustive forensic audit has concluded “No Apparent Reason”. Pass to Lander hits unexpected obstacle, and takes an Oiler Bounce™ straight into dire trouble.

    4) Jeff Petry, the right defenceman, goes for a line change with the play apparnetly under control in front of him. When the Oilers fail to gain the zone & Coyle breaks away, Schultz coming from the LW players bench has little chance to cut off Coyle, normally the RD’s man. (Note to Petry haters: feel free to claim this one as a reason this goal is All Petry’s Fault)

    5) Andrew Ference, the left defenceman, has busted up even with the puck, meaning Oilers are four abreast attacking the blueline while the fifth guy is changing. This from the most senior player on the team, the “calm feet” vet who knows how to win and is here to show the boys how it’s done. (Note to Ference haters: feel free to claim this one as a reason this goal is All Ference’s Fault.)

    6) Charlie Coyle jumps on the loose puck & makes a fantastic play to turn his half-chance into a sensational, game-breaking goal. By the same token, however, Oilers don’t get the Timely Save At The Key Time. (Note to goalie haters: …. you know the rest)

    7) Eberle skates hard back to his own blueline, realizes he was the third closest Oiler to the lone attacker, and lets up. He’s 15 yards behind the guy cruising into the end zone, is he supposed to make a diving tackle or something?

    Lots of culprits to go around in by books. Some might hate the fourth line being out with 5 minutes left in a 1-1 game. Some might blame Gazdic for screwing up the rotation. Some might blame the GM who hired Gazdic, and who didn’t call anybody up when Hall got hurt. Some might blame Petry, or Ference, or even Schultz. Some might blame Fraser. Some might blame that @#$%^ #@$% “Lady” Luck. But for some, the narrative says “Eberle turned the puck over at the blueline and didn’t even bother to backcheck, the entitled overpaid useless little so-and-so.”

    Was Eberle partly to blame for this goal? Yes, absolutely. Should he be the only guy to wear the goat horns? Not at all.

  69. The Artist formerly known as "NYCOIL" says:

    G Money,

    So what’s the NHL equivalent of baseball’s “Speed never slumps?”

  70. G Money says:

    The Artist formerly known as “NYCOIL”:
    G Money,

    So what’s the NHL equivalent of baseball’s “Speed never slumps?”

    Tough one.

    “Size never shrinks”?

    Though in a worst case interpretation, that devolves into

    “Dustin Penner can’t stop eating pancakes”

    so maybe not!

  71. G Money says:

    Here’s my +- comment from a few threads ago. Note that the little chart I post in the middle is not intended to be analytical, it just demonstrates the effect of sample size on reducing the effect of noise, which is highly relevant to +-.

    G Money:
    Personally, I think +- is just fine as a stat with large sample sizes (I’d start at one season and go up from there).

    I think it is David Staples, in looking at the rationale for his Neilsen numbers, that regularly quotes the idea that “just” 60% of all assigned plus-minus scores are actually earned.

    This is an excellent reason to distrust the stat in the short term.But the flip side is: it is actually a reasonably decent stat with enough sample size.

    You can (sort of) illustrate the effect by comparing a 50-50 with a 60-40 positive bias track:
    http://i.imgur.com/klQsNEA.png

    I ran it for 120 steps, assuming 1.5 +- events per game as a basis, using Excel’s random number function.

    Notice how the two actually track closely the first 36 games – in fact, the positive bias track is above the neutral bias track for quite a while.That’s +- twenty games in – still mostly meaningless.

    But in the long term, the underlying bias finally prevails.The neutral ends up modestly negative (random effect). Even that is kind of funny – the data track is mostly neutral as you’d expect, but one sequence from 51 to 61 explains the entire negative result.Funny how random numbers work.

    The track of the positive bias is also all over the place, but the longer you go, the longer the “real” data asserts itself.

    +- kind of works the same way.

    We’re only halfway through this season, so I’d say +- still needs to be taken with a large grain of salt.

    On the other hand, if it’s confirming a consistent effect from multiple seasons past … where there’s smoke, there’s almost certainly fire.

    (Note: I ran the simulation a bunch of times.The results for the neutral track are all over the map – from strongly negative to strongly positive.The results for the positive track are pretty wild too, but eventually always end up positive.I bet if I ran it enough times, there will be a time when the neutral track finishes higher than the positive track.And others where the positive track ends up negative.That’s random variation for you …)

  72. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Excellent analysis.

    I can conclude only one thing: It’s All McCurdy’s Fault.

  73. Rondo says:

    Bar_Qu,

    Personally from what I have read Crouse is a top 10 player. He made the WJ’s team at 17 1/2 yrs old, he plays with a poor team in Kingston, if Sam Bennett was healthy and his centre Crouse would probably rank #3 or #4.

  74. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    Excellent analysis.

    I can conclude only one thing: It’s All McCurdy’s Fault.

    Well that’s a given.

  75. Bruce McCurdy says:

    G Money: “Size never shrinks”?

    Depends what kind of “size” you’re talking about, Big Boy.

  76. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Btw, Eberle’s biggest mistake was trying to attack the offensive blueline with speed and control of the puck with five minutes left in a 1-1 game. In Gary Bettman’s NHL, the risk outweighs the reward for trying to be creative in a close game.

    Instead, let’s default like the colour commentators do to “he should have got that puck deep”. Of course, they don’t actually have to say that until the puck is already in the wrong net and the play-by-play guy has to pause for breath. By then, it’s Obvious that a mistake has been made.

    So … I blame Bettman. We all have our whipping boys, and he’s mine. 🙂

  77. Dicky94 says:

    I will get some gears for this, but I think the quickest way we can become a contender as soon as next year would be to trade this years first picks. Even if its first overall. Mac t could come out of the draft with exactly what we need without moving any of the core , while loading up with 2nd round picks in the process. It’s a deep draft so make smart picks in the second round. I believe that the Oilers can win with the core they have now if we had that #1 d man (not Phaneuf), Goalie (Takarski would be nice) and #2 center ( Couturier ). Oh ya and sign Petry now!!!

  78. MightyOil1 says:

    oliveoilers: So, by that logic, trade everyone for a shit-hot goalie and three guys that average 10 shots a game. The rest can be filler from the AHL whose only job is to line up soccer-wall style in front of the goalie when the three snipers are on a line change? Lol, I should try this in NHL15. If I played video games!Note: Darryl, Kevin and Craig, I work a compacted work week and have every Fri, Sat and Sun off. I’m available for consultation and will work for some of those magic beans you have a lot of. That Dellow guy don’t know nuthin’, no how!

    I know you were being sarcastic but actually if you had a top 5 goalie and 3 of the highest shooting players in the league you would have a pretty good team. Here are the top 30 players in terms of shots this season – pretty good list….

    Rank Player Games Played Shots Shots Per Game
    1 Alex Ovechkin 48 230 4.79
    2 Tyler Seguin 47 193 4.11
    3 Claude Giroux 48 180 3.75
    4 Erik Karlsson 46 176 3.83
    5 Max Pacioretty 46 167 3.63
    6 Rick Nash 45 166 3.69
    7 Vladimir Tarasenko 46 161 3.50
    8 James van Riemsdyk 49 161 3.29
    9 Steven Stamkos 49 160 3.27
    10 Phil Kessel 49 160 3.27
    11 Zach Parise 40 156 3.90
    12 Joe Pavelski 48 155 3.23
    13 Kyle Okposo 46 154 3.35
    14 Logan Couture 48 151 3.15
    15 Henrik Zetterberg 48 150 3.13
    16 Oliver Ekman-Larsson 47 150 3.19
    17 Dustin Byfuglien 49 149 3.04
    18 Patrick Kane 48 148 3.08
    19 John Tavares 47 148 3.15
    20 Marian Hossa 48 148 3.08
    21 Nathan MacKinnon 49 148 3.02
    22 Patrick Marleau 48 147 3.06
    23 Filip Forsberg 46 145 3.15
    24 Alexander Steen 44 145 3.30
    25 Jason Pominville 47 145 3.09
    26 Keith Yandle 47 145 3.09
    27 Blake Wheeler 49 143 2.92
    28 Jakub Voracek 49 142 2.90
    29 Evgeni Malkin 45 142 3.16
    30 Jamie Benn 47 142 3.02

  79. Bag of Pucks says:

    Bruce, I’ve watched the goal yet again. Gord us Oiler fans are gluttons for punishment.

    The only thing I disagree with in your play by play is Eberle skating back hard to the blueline. By my eye, it’s a token effort from turnover on. He may very well have been gassed from the doubleshift, but odd that he has the jump attacking and none coming back?

    For the record, I’m not making this judgement on the basis of the ultimate small sample size – a single GA.

    I’ve been on the trade Eberle bandwagon all year. It’s a combination of the defensive shortcomings, lack of size, contract value and trade value.

    In some ways, it’s a backhanded compliment. He’s one of the core that still has legitimate trade value. Combine that with the fact his 200 ft game has some holes, and I’d like to see MacT deal him for badly needed help on the D side.

    Trading him is a BIG risk cos you still can’t project Yakupov’s final upside. But they drafted Yak 1OV and his trade value doesn’t equate to that currently. Thus, they’re pot committed with Yak.

  80. Ben says:

    Dicky94:
    I will get some gears for this, but I think the quickest way we can become a contender as soon as next year would be to trade this years first picks. Even if its first overall.Mac t could come out of the draft with exactly what we need without moving any of the core , while loading up with 2nd round picks in the process.It’s a deep draft so make smart picks in the second round.I believe that the Oilers can win with the core they have now if we had that#1 d man (not Phaneuf), Goalie (Takarski would be nice) and #2 center ( Couturier ).Oh ya and sign Petry now!!!

    You think trading the 3rd-4th overall pick will net us a #1 D, a #2 D, a #1 G, a #2 C, a #3 C, and productive #3 W? In the cap era? And that the Oil’s youth will have sufficiently developed to contend for a championship next year?

    I sure don’t.

  81. Bag of Pucks says:

    Btw Bruce, freeze frame the goal with the puck at the red line after the turnover.

    Eberle is the closest player to Coyle, thus the best in position to prevent the shot coming back.

    Ference, who definitely screwed up on the play, was driving the middle on the rush and is thus out of position after the turnover.

    Ference then blows by Eberle like he’s standing still passing him at the blueline. Ference acts like a player highly motivated to get back coz he screwed up and his man is now attacking. Eberle gives the appearance of a player who thinks he’s paid to score goals, not backcheck.

    How anyone can watch that sequence (particularly when Ference so graphically outpaces Eberle on the backcheck) and deduce Jordan was giving full effort is perplexing to me.

  82. Woodguy says:

    ALERT!!

    Kevin Lowe is on Bob’s show today talking the AHL West process.

    Lowe is always worth a listen because he lacks the filters most people who deal with the media need.

    I doubt Bob asks any questions that Lowe can get in trouble with, but he likes to “expand” on things.

    ….”….Let me just add this: I don’t think there’s another person working in the NHL who has as many rings as I do. So I know a thing or two about winning…..In case that was a concern.”

  83. Adam Wu says:

    The Artist formerly known as “NYCOIL”:

    Also, on MacT: he seems good at identifying MacT-types. Those are necessary for any team. However, he is bad at identifying goalies, attacking centres, and defensemen. Kevin Lowe used to be able to find good defenseman out of his ass crack. They should consult with him on that one subject (and that one alone). And then find men who can find good goalies and offensive centres.

    Once MacT has finished filling up the bottom 6 Fs, fire his ass and replace him with Mark Messier. Messier will naturally, find your offensive centres. When the team is loaded with offensive centres and totally unbalanced as a result, fire Mark’s ass and hire Bill Ranford to replace him. Let Bill find a couple good goalies, then fire his ass….

    Because that’s the Oilers way….

  84. Bag of Pucks says:

    oliveoilers: I never claimed to be an expert.You did when you made such sweeping statementsas “I’ll never understand fans making excuses for a lack of effort. It’s the one factor that is solely in the player’s control. When they give less than a full effort, they shortchange the fans, the team and themselves.” and “That is not championship mettle. That is being a floater. Gagner redux.”

    You are demonising a player that made a mistake, one you admit “He doesn’t do it ALL the time but he does it enough to be in the bottom 20 of the league in +/-.”

    What ever the problems the Oilers have, Jordan Eberle isn’t one of them.Lazy back check, whatever; this is up to the coach to talk to him about.

    On the other hand, burn him, he’s a witch!

    Knew when I first criticized him on the goal, there’d be a backlash. He’s a fan favorite.

  85. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Woodguy: So I know a thing or two about winning…

    Humility, on the other hand…

  86. Woodguy says:

    Auston Matthews ’16: Humility, on the other hand…

    Me, or him?

    🙂

  87. Dicky94 says:

    Ben,
    Drafting Strome or Halfandhalf or who ever he is will only keep us in the direction we are going. Nowhere. Even McDavid alone cant turn this around soon enough. Another losing season next year and the core will start to jump from the burning wreckage. If that happens, then all the losing seasons us fans have gone through for the last eight years were for nothing. The Oilers have to at least see what they can get for the picks. I think it could be substantial. Especially the teams needing to make cap space.

  88. Woodguy says:

    Bag of Pucks: Knew when I first criticized him on the goal, there’d be a backlash. He’s a fan favorite.

    I tweeted this after that play:

    Woodguy @Woodguy55 · Jan 27
    Eberle should miss a game for his “3 half assed strides and then glide” back check after the give away. Pathetic effort.

    Everyone makes mistakes.

    How you respond to the mistakes separates the wheat and chaff.

  89. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Woodguy,

    Is there a concern?

    Him, of course.

  90. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    Btw Bruce, freeze frame the goal with the puck at the red line after the turnover.

    Eberle is the closest player to Coyle, thus the best in position to prevent the shot coming back.

    Ference, who definitely screwed up on the play, was driving the middle on the rush and is thus out of position after the turnover.

    Ference then blows by Eberle like he’s standing still passing him at the blueline. Ference acts like a player highly motivated to get back coz he screwed up and his man is now attacking. Eberle gives the appearance of a player who thinks he’s paid to score goals, not backcheck.

    How anyone can watch that sequence (particularly when Ference so graphically outpaces Eberle on the backcheck) and deduce Jordan was giving full effort is perplexing to me.

    Ference is actually in better position to cut off the path to the net because he’s in the centre of the ice. Eberle was already beaten. Coyle had the jump on him from the get go.

    The wingers are generally the first line of defence, not the last. Their job coming back is to leave the first wave of attack to the defencemen (both of whom had abandoned ship, but both of whom were tracking back) and to pick up the trailer. Of course sometimes the Oilers send all five guys on the ice after the one guy with the puck, Tom Thumb style, and that always ends well.

  91. knighttown says:

    Bruce McCurdy: dustrock: I wasn’t talking about Ference or the overall defensive play. I was talking specifically about Eberle on that play. It’s just a thing some have noticed, that Eberle takes shifts or nights off. He has a lot of value to this team, but if we’re talking about moving any members of the core, it’s gotta be him.

    Boy am I ever getting the Jason Arnott / Tom Poti / Tom Gilbert vibe reading this post. Folks complain regularly about those guys getting run out of town, but it’s still open season.

    Let’s have a look at that goal, shall we?

    1) Eberle was double shifting on Lander’s line because Luke Gazdic can’t be trusted with meaningful ice time. So he had just played a 1 minute shift, took a 58 second rest, and was back out for another shift with irregular linemates.

    2) Eberle brings the puck up the (a.k.a. “his”) right side of the ice, sees his centre burst up the outside, by the boards, and slips him what should have been a routine, but perfect, pass.

    3) Matt Fraser, the Left wing, coasts right into the passing lane by the right wing boards for what my exhaustive forensic audit has concluded “No Apparent Reason”. Pass to Lander hits unexpected obstacle, and takes an Oiler Bounce™ straight into dire trouble.

    4) Jeff Petry, the right defenceman, goes for a line change with the play apparnetly under control in front of him. When the Oilers fail to gain the zone & Coyle breaks away, Schultz coming from the LW players bench has little chance to cut off Coyle, normally the RD’s man. (Note to Petry haters: feel free to claim this one as a reason this goal is All Petry’s Fault)

    5) Andrew Ference, the left defenceman, has busted up even with the puck, meaning Oilers are four abreast attacking the blueline while the fifth guy is changing. This from the most senior player on the team, the “calm feet” vet who knows how to win and is here to show the boys how it’s done. (Note to Ference haters: feel free to claim this one as a reason this goal is All Ference’s Fault.)

    6) Charlie Coyle jumps on the loose puck & makes a fantastic play to turn his half-chance into a sensational, game-breaking goal. By the same token, however, Oilers don’t get the Timely Save At The Key Time. (Note to goalie haters: …. you know the rest)

    7) Eberle skates hard back to his own blueline, realizes he was the third closest Oiler to the lone attacker, and lets up. He’s 15 yards behind the guy cruising into the end zone, is he supposed to make a diving tackle or something?

    Lots of culprits to go around in by books. Some might hate the fourth line being out with 5 minutes left in a 1-1 game. Some might blame Gazdic for screwing up the rotation. Some might blame the GM who hired Gazdic, and who didn’t call anybody up when Hall got hurt. Some might blame Petry, or Ference, or even Schultz. Some might blame Fraser. Some might blame that @#$%^#@$% “Lady” Luck. But for some, the narrative says “Eberle turned the puck over at the blueline and didn’t even bother to backcheck, the entitled overpaid useless little so-and-so.”

    Was Eberle partly to blame for this goal? Yes, absolutely. Should he be the only guy to wear the goat horns? Not at all.

    Phenomenal post Beuce. I was reading the comments and getting angrier and angrier. I thought Eberles pass was brilliant. It is very hard to attack a trapping team with speed and by using misdirection and slipping it to the wall to Lander in full flight he’d done just that. I don’t know enough to to blame Fraser but will just say that’s damn unlucky. I don’t blame Feence who was joining the rush. I don’t blame Petry for changing and I certainly don’t blame Schultz who flew back. Coyle made a gasp-worthy play. I literally gasped and said “Wow”.

    I also don’t blame Yak much on his goal. I teach my Novice kids not to skate it into the home plate area but I think I’d trust Nail Yakupov to do so. Gazdic? No. Yak had an easy outlet and just fanned. Tough break and it was one of those nights. Why didn’t the two Dubnyk gaffes end up in his net? Why doesn’t anyone ever cash on Yaks setups?

    Besides hating Bettman points which I agree with, Bruce tries to avoid getting stuck on narratives and group think and that’s such an awesome attribute to emulate. Almost all players are some good and some bad. Almost none are truly lazy. Almost none are soft.

    If you want to analyze objectively (as I think we all intend to do) you’ve got to clean the slate of every player before every game. If you’ve got your mind made up that Eberle is soft before the game starts well then, every time he loses a 50/50 puck battle you’ll have made up your mind why.

    I for one thought Eberle was pretty damned good last game on a night that no one could really produce sustained offense. Best on his line by a fair margin and continually made Mcadavid like cuts to the net for jam plays.

    Nuge on the other hand looked drunk especially in the first. He singlehandedly killed thet first PP by fumbling the puck 3-4 times on simple break in passes. Clean slate tonight.

    Will anyone acknowledge the difference in Schultz and Nikitin over the past month or, because they were awful in 2014 they’re destined to remain awful forever

    (Please note, by saying they have been better/good I’m not supporting the signing of Nikitin or the potential retention of Schultz). The first didn’t work out and the second is, to me, the toughest call of the offseason. Great comment by Louie last night. Justin Schultz may just be the best forward skating defenseman in the NHL.

    If only he wasn’t so soft and lazy;)

  92. Zangetsu says:

    Man if only we had a team of luke gazdics. Not these soft eberle types.

  93. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy: I tweeted this after that play:

    Woodguy @Woodguy55·Jan 27
    Eberle should miss a game for his “3 half assed strides and then glide” back check after the give away. Pathetic effort.

    Everyone makes mistakes.

    How you respond to the mistakes separates the wheat and chaff.

    Two things: 1) Eberle played 21:25 including 8:33 of the third period. Coyle played 11:07 / 2:41. I expect he was a tad fresher. 2) Eberle came closest of any Oiler to tying the game, when Duby stoned him with ~0:45 left. That would have been an ideal response, but at least he came close.

    Same goes for Nail, who is geting a lot of priase for how he bounced back from a dreadful, goal-costing blunder. He created, but couldn’t score. But bravo, he tried, so let’s give him a pat on the back & second star honours while we’re at it.

    Don’t disagree with “it’s how you respond”, but on mistakes late in a game, there isn’t a whole lot of time to do so. Ask Benoit Pouliot, who many armchair experts would have benched after his faux pas vs. Detroit. But the coach hung with him, and he did indeed respond.

    Let’s hope Eberle does likewise. The option of having him miss a game is a non-starter, not when Oilers have 12 healthy forwards and one of them is Gazdic. Although Aulie does need a game somewhere one of these times, so maybe …

  94. Genjutsu says:

    Arch has piece up at ON that IMO we should all read.

    This is the reason I do not read the news paper anymore.

    Sad.

  95. Bruce McCurdy says:

    knighttown: Besides hating Bettman points which I agree with, Bruce tries to avoid getting stuck on narratives and group think and that’s such an awesome attribute to emulate. Almost all players are some good and some bad. Almost none are truly lazy. Almost none are soft.

    Thank you, that is certainly the intent. I’ll admit that sometimes emotional imperatives overwhelm the intellectual ones especially while the game is in progress, I tend to see it in colour (frequently, red) before trying to parse it on more black&white terms. After the game is over I try to put the “dis” in “passion”, it’s my job for one thing, even as sometimes that “diss” will bleed right into my game grades. 🙂

    But your larger point of “some good, some bad” is bang on point, with rare exceptions to be made for the likes of Wayne Gretzky, Patrick O’Sullivan or Shame Corson. 😀 But the rank & file guys? They all grade out somewhere between 3 & 7 most nights, and with reason.

  96. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Young Willis with a fine piece on turnovers & accountability that has direct relevance to this thread. Feel free to substitute “Eberle” for “Yakupov”, even though Nelson was focussing on the latter.

  97. Woodguy says:

    Auston Matthews ’16:
    Woodguy,

    Is there a concern?

    Him, of course.

    I was a crowing dink earlier in the thread.

    Standard actually.

  98. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Two things: 1) Eberle played 21:25 including 8:33 of the third period. Coyle played 11:07 / 2:41. I expect he was a tad fresher. 2) Eberle came closest of any Oiler to tying the game, when Duby stoned him with ~0:45 left. That would have been an ideal response, but at least he came close.

    Same goes for Nail, who is geting a lot of priase for how he bounced back from a dreadful, goal-costing blunder. He created, but couldn’t score. But bravo, he tried, so let’s give him a pat on the back & second star honours while we’re at it.

    Don’t disagree with “it’s how you respond”, but on mistakes late in a game, there isn’t a whole lot of time to do so. Ask Benoit Pouliot, who many armchair experts would have benched after his faux pas vs. Detroit. But the coach hung with him, and he did indeed respond.

    Let’s hope Eberle does likewise. The option of having him miss a game is a non-starter, not when Oilers have 12 healthy forwards and one of them is Gazdic. Although Aulie does need a game somewhere one of these times, so maybe …

    There’s “bagging and dragging” and there;s dragging your ass.

    He skated pretty quick up the ice, but less than half that speed on the back check.

    He’s a mosier without the puck.

    Not quite a lollygagger, but close.

    Edit:

    Eberle has the talent to be a Parise in the NHL.

    He doesn’t play nearly as hard as Parise without the puck though.

    If he does that, he could be elite.

  99. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Genjutsu:
    Arch has piece up at ON that IMO we should all read.

    This is the reason I do not read the news paper anymore.

    Sad.

    Then there’s this piece by John MacKinnon published in the Edmonton Journal today giving a different viewpoint of that situation. But I guess since you’ve already sworn off newspapers you probably haven’t read it?

  100. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Woodguy: I was a crowing dink earlier in the thread.

    Standard actually.

    Okay, both of you then!

  101. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy: I was a crowing dink earlier in the thread.

    Standard actually.

    But in a nice way!

  102. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    T – 15:00 for Lowe’s spot on Stauffer’s show. Scheduled @ 1:35.

  103. dustrock says:

    McCurdy – I like your analysis of the 2-1 goal against. My point, as Bag of Pucks and Woodguy at least are agreed with me on, is that at least Ference, who is sometimes an idiot, looked like he realized he was an idiot and was desperately trying to get back. Eberle was not.

    It’s not even that play, it’s just that type of attitude in general. You get that goal scorer’s mentality in soccer, and you would be surprised if your striker came back over half to win back the ball. But you can’t have that mentality in the NHL in 2015.

    Remember a while back when Hall dove and swiped with his stick to prevent an empty net goal against? That was the day I fell in love. 😉

  104. sliderule says:

    Bar_Qu,

    You are right on about Crouse.
    In the drafts from 2004 -2014 inclusive there have only two forwards taken from CHL in top 10 who scored less than a pt/game.Horvat was the last one and he was over .9 /game and had a great playoff and memorial cup.He was also taken number nine.
    Any GM or head scout that buys into central scouting that Crouse is a top five pick is going to be fired real soon.
    I guess the oilers fit the mold for both positions so expect the worst.

  105. RexLibris says:

    FYI regarding some mention of McDavid having an issue with the Oilers, should it come to pass.

    WARNING: Spector article – http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/agent-oilers-legal-case-no-concern-to-mcdavid/

  106. The Artist formerly known as "NYCOIL" says:

    sliderule:
    Bar_Qu,

    You are right on about Crouse.
    In the drafts from 2004 -2014 inclusive there have only two forwardstaken from CHL in top 10 who scored less than a pt/game.Horvat was the last one and he was over .9 /game and had a great playoff and memorial cup.He was also taken number nine.
    Any GM or head scout that buys into central scouting that Crouse is a top five pick is going to be fired real soon.
    I guess the oilers fit the mold for both positions so expect the worst.

    So does Zacha warrant his free pass? I’m just asking. I like the player but the numbers aren’t there.

  107. Lowetide says:

    The Artist formerly known as “NYCOIL”: So does Zacha warrant his free pass? I’m just asking. I like the player but the numbers aren’t there.

    I don’t think he does, not at this point. It should be mentioned there is plenty of track to go.

  108. RexLibris says:

    Also, there is smoke to the rumours that the Flames may be interested in Mike Richards. (pun very much intended).

    http://www.sportsnet.ca/hockey/nhl/mike-richards-calgary-flames-los-angeles-kings-trade-report/

    Kent writes about it here http://flamesnation.ca/2015/1/29/the-flames-and-mike-richards

    The Flames were unable to leverage their enviable cap situation last off-season to grab some assets, but they are in a good position to land a Tyler Toffoli or collection of high-end futures from the Kings given LA’s precarious cap situation. It will just come down to what Lombardi is willing to part with to make his issues disappear vs what Treliving is willing to accept to take on that burden.

    The Richards thing could still be interesting.

  109. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    RexLibris: WARNING: Spector article

    Thanks for that warning – this should be a rule here!

  110. sliderule says:

    The Artist formerly known as “NYCOIL”,

    I have the same view on Zacha as Crouse.

    Terrific value with the Pens pick.

    Top ten forward picks have to be at least decent scorers in junior.

  111. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Just a thought on how Katz and Bassen could sort out all this nasty biz stuff: A game of backgammon!!!

    Maybe a prized prospect can be included…

  112. B S says:

    Woodguy: There’s “bagging and dragging” and there;s dragging your ass.

    He skated pretty quick up the ice, but less than half that speed on the back check.

    Newton’s first law (inertia), Ebs was flying up the ice because he put all his energy into that rush, when Coyle is going the other way he has to slow down, turn, and accelerate again, while (during a double shift) presumably gassed from his initial acceleration. But we expect him to show the same jump in his step? after playing a quarter of the third period?

    Part of the problem with the “lazy backchecker” narrative is that it ignores the work put in prior in that shift. Offensive players are point-getters because they put their all into getting the puck up the ice and scoring. If they sprint up the ice at the start of the shift then they have less energy to skate back after a turnover.

    Criticize him for being creative and not conservative if you want, but I don’t think it’s fair to question the effort level.

  113. RexLibris says:

    Auston Matthews ’16:
    Just a thought on how Katz and Bassen could sort out all this nasty biz stuff: A game of backgammon!!!

    Maybe a prized prospect can be included…

    If I were Skalbania I would’ve checked Pocklington for loaded dice.

  114. Bruce McCurdy says:

    dustrock:
    McCurdy – I like your analysis of the 2-1 goal against.My point, as Bag of Pucks and Woodguy at least are agreed with me on, is that at least Ference, who is sometimes an idiot, looked like he realized he was an idiot and was desperately trying to get back.Eberle was not.

    It’s not even that play, it’s just that type of attitude in general.You get that goal scorer’s mentality in soccer, and you would be surprised if your striker came back over half to win back the ball.But you can’t have that mentality in the NHL in 2015.

    Remember a while back when Hall dove and swiped with his stick to prevent an empty net goal against?That was the day I fell in love.

    Yeah Ference busted ass & tried to cut off the play from the middle. He damn near got Coyle too, couldn’t quite cut him off. I think Eberle realized right away he had no shot at Coyle so he headed for his zone, which is generally the winger’s job. I’m not sure he expected the right defenceman to be gone either.

    I was going to bring up a soccer analogy but you beat me to it, nicely done. So I’ll bring up a baseball one instead, of a guy who plays the percentages rather than blood and guts “all out” types. Bill James wrote that there were fans in Kansas City who would seethe with rage every time Amos Otis wouldn’t run into the fence trying to catch a deep fly ball, but would play the hop, hold the guy to second base, and live to fight another day — one fo the percentages being that he can help tomorrow’s team a lot better from centre field than he can from IR.

    Hall is more the blood-and-guts, Kirk Gibson type who will go through a wall for his team and may be just dumb enough to try it.

    Many fans prefer the one type over the other, with the blood-and-guts types more popular though not universally so. Whereas I see the strengths and weaknesses of both approaches and would prefer to have some of each on my hypothetical “balanced” roster. (Cue LT)

  115. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    RexLibris: If I were Skalbania I would’ve checked Pocklington for loaded dice.

    A good business man leaves nothing to chance!

  116. kooler says:

    With Hall out why arent we calling up Parkarinen?

  117. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    kooler:
    With Hall out why arent we calling up Parkarinen?

    Is there any concern about winning?

  118. leadfarmer says:

    Well we got injured Hall covered and now Eberle. Who can we take on next. I’ll get the torches ready and you get the pitchforks, lets chase all these bums out of town.

  119. Bar_Qu says:

    Rondo:
    Bar_Qu,

    Personally from what I have read Crouse is a top 10 player.He made the WJ’s team at 17 1/2 yrs old, he plays with a poor team in Kingston, if Sam Bennett was healthy and his centreCrousewould probably rank #3 or #4.

    Sorry, but from what I read he isn’t cracking the point per game threshold, which for me is a troubling thing. Maybe he’s better than the numbers indicate, but I seriously wonder if the WJs made him look better than he is.

    *edit*
    Then I read that sliderule has already stated this in a more clear fashion than I did.

  120. Bruce McCurdy says:

    kooler:
    With Hall out why arent we calling up Parkarinen?

    Gotta get Gazdic some games.

    The good news from Anton Lander’s perspective is that after being stuck on a line with Lenny Petrell & Benny Eager his first year, he’s been promoted and now gets to play with Matt Fraser & Luke Gazdic.

    I wonder how you say plus ça change in Swedish?

  121. Bar_Qu says:

    Bruce McCurdy:

    So … I blame Bettman. We all have our whipping boys, and he’s mine.

    Please continue beating that horse until it is dead.

  122. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Should the Oilers put a claim in on the 24 year old Dylan Olsen?

  123. Bruce McCurdy says:

    I’m going to the Toilet Bowl tonight, can scarcely contain my excitement.

    Buffalo’s current 12 game regulation-loss streak is a record for the shootout era. 17 GF, 53 GA during the slide. 253 SF, 394 SA.

    But, speaking of the shootout era, in that time the Oilers have hosted the Sabres four times, with the locals posting a record of 0-4-0 with 6 GF, 20 GA.

    It’s like a meeting between a resistable force & a moveable object. Something’s gotta give.

  124. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    I’m going to the Toilet Bowl tonight, can scarcely contain my excitement.

    Buffalo’s current 12 game regulation-loss streak is a record for the shootout era. 17 GF, 53 GA during the slide. 253 SF, 394 SA.

    But, speaking of the shootout era, in that time the Oilers have hosted the Sabres four times, with the locals posting a record of 0-4-0 with 6 GF, 20 GA.

    It’s like a meeting between a resistable force & a moveable object. Something’s gotta give.

    What I wouldn’t give to have a seat next to you, Bruce.

    Just remember to time the drinking of your beer carefully. We don’t want the Oilers down three goals before you’ve had your first sip.

    Yes, definitely the moveable object and the resistable force on display.

    Here’s my concern: Fasth lost last game so they go to Scrivens tonight. He wins because it is the Sabres. They start Scrivens on Saturday and he has a horrible night (I think overall Fasth is the better goaltender, personally) which means another loss to the Flames.

  125. RexLibris says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Gotta get Gazdic some games.

    The good news from Anton Lander’s perspective is that after being stuck on a line with Lenny Petrell & Benny Eager his first year, he’s been promoted and now gets to play with Matt Fraser & Luke Gazdic.

    I wonder how you say plus ça change in Swedish?

    plus ca ändra, apparently.

    I don’t think Google Translate nailed it, though.

  126. oliveoilers says:

    Are we allowed to hate players for not scoring virtual empty-netters? Show a lack of scoring effort, if you ask me…..

    “Yeah…..Just yeah…..you got to bury them. Yeah.”

    Todd Nelson on Jultz and Purcell’s chances last night. (Or possibly about the players themselves.)

  127. Lowetide says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    Should the Oilers put a claim in on the 24 year old Dylan Olsen?

    I had a look, he’s wobbly w/o Gudbranson but plays most of his time with him.

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=1601&withagainst=true&season=2014-15&sit=5v5

    He’s 24 and still hasn’t established himself but defensemen are not easily read. Answer: I don’t know #hot #take

  128. oliveoilers says:

    leadfarmer:
    Well we got injured Hall covered and now Eberle.Who can we take on next.I’ll get the torches ready and you get the pitchforks, lets chase all these bums out of town.

    Somewhere, Jasmine senses a disturbance in the force….

  129. supernova says:

    RexLibris: plus ca ändra, apparently.

    I don’t think Google Translate nailed it, though.

    Rex

    are you on twitter ?

  130. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide: I had a look, he’s wobbly w/o Gudbranson but plays most of his time with him.

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=1601&withagainst=true&season=2014-15&sit=5v5

    He’s 24 and still hasn’t established himself but defensemen are not easily read. Answer: I don’t know #hot #take

    He’s interesting enough I wish I’d been paying attention this morning when he hit waivers, I woulda wrote a post. There are some things to be said in his favour, that said I can’t say I know the player.

  131. Woodguy says:

    Klima’s_Bucket:
    Should the Oilers put a claim in on the 24 year old Dylan Olsen?

    No, he’s not good.

    I follow FLA closely and he’s not good.

  132. Tire Fire says:

    Bruce McCurdy:

    It’s like a meeting between a resistable force & a moveable object. Something’s gotta give.

    Beautiful.

    …and definitely going to be re-used as my own.

  133. Pouzar says:

    Well this is a first.

    Pierre LeBrun ‏@Real_ESPNLeBrun 3m3 minutes ago
    AHL still hasn’t finalized scheduling elements for next season but most likely option is that new Pacific Division teams play fewer games

  134. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    You and KT make good points on the Eberle play.

    My issue was how hard Eberle’s first couple strides were in his attempt at getting back.

    Not nearly as hard as they were going up the ice.

    I think Eberle has elite all-world talent with the puck.

    I think he can stick handle in a phone booth and has ice water in his veins at times in the slot.

    I wish he:

    – had a one-timer, esp on the PP. He likes to dust off the puck and give the goalie and D time to adjust to the pass
    -won more board battles instead of doing flyby stick checks

    Doesn’t mean I hate him.

    Just means I wish he was more “complete” as a player.

    This team has one “complete” player who is also elite offensively (RNH) and Hall is damn close.

    They need more.

    Complete players who are elite offensively are like Hossa, Toews, Parise, Crosby, Zetterburg, Datsyuk, Malkin, Kopitar, Carter, etc.

    I think Eberle could be part of that group.

  135. theres oil in virginia says:

    dustrock: It’s not even that play, it’s just that type of attitude in general. You get that goal scorer’s mentality in soccer, and you would be surprised if your striker came back over half to win back the ball. But you can’t have that mentality in the NHL in 2015.

    The reason for this is that you don’t want your striker expending his energy defending, unless he thinks it can turn around directly into attacking. I agree that the winger in hockey can’t take that approach – he’s got to be involved in defense at some level – but the idea that Eberle should be more engaged in defense than offense (or even as engaged) is not one I agree with.

  136. Jon K says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    I’m going to the Toilet Bowl tonight, can scarcely contain my excitement.

    I hate to be a spelling and grammar Nazi, but I think it’s spelled “excrement”, Bruce.

  137. oliveoilers says:

    Tire Fire: Beautiful.

    …and definitely going to be re-used as my own.

    I was trying to think of what the resistable force and the moveable object could be.

    Gravy flowing toward a dry biscuit?

  138. SwedishPoster says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Gotta get Gazdic some games.

    The good news from Anton Lander’s perspective is that after being stuck on a line with Lenny Petrell & Benny Eager his first year, he’s been promoted and now gets to play with Matt Fraser & Luke Gazdic.

    I wonder how you say plus ça change in Swedish?

    “ju mer saker förändras, desto mer förblir de likadana”
    Something like that. Knew my old school french would come in handy one day.

  139. RexLibris says:

    supernova: Rex

    are you on twitter ?

    I get that a lot.

    I’m not (no smartphone, and a very lackadaisical, some might say lollygagging, approach to technology).

    I’m afraid I’d probably only disappoint on the 140 character forum, though. Better to consistently disappoint on this one.

  140. RexLibris says:

    Jon K: I hate to be a spelling and grammar Nazi, but I think it’s spelled “excrement”, Bruce.

    If that is the case then he should probably stay home.

    Or pick up some adult nappies on the way to Rexall. Which would make me retract my earlier statement of wanting to sit next to Bruce for the game.

    Sorry Bruce, but spastic colons are kind of a deal-breaker for me.

    🙂

  141. Unicorns says:

    I was not trashing Eberle. I think he’s talented and I think he doesn’t play with much of an edge. His overall effort is there but he clearly likes scoring more than playing the walls or D. He has enough weight at his height to play more physically but that’s not his thing.

    Does he score enough warrant one dimensional play @ 6M? On a tough team that needs a scorer great, like Gaborik. On a team that looks for the easy road I don’t think it’s ideal. Yak would have scored 29 pts playing top line all year. Eberle can bring something good now. If the cap drops he might become a guy with a heavy contract for his production. Yak will be cheap for a while still. Free up cap for the shake out this summer.

  142. RexLibris says:

    oliveoilers: I was trying to think of what the resistable force and the moveable object could be.

    Gravy flowing toward a dry biscuit?

    Penner and pancakes?

  143. SwedishPoster says:

    SwedishPoster,

    To correct myself slightly, those exact words are just the first part, I wrote the meaning if the full quote.

  144. SwedishPoster says:

    SwedishPoster,

    You are a silly goose.

  145. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: I get that a lot.

    I’m not (no smartphone, and a very lackadaisical, some might say lollygagging, approach to technology).

    I’m afraid I’d probably only disappoint on the 140 character forum, though. Better to consistently disappoint on this one.

    Lollygagger!!

    Get on there FFS.

    The tweets during games are worth it.

    Being able to Direct Message (private message) people you know from the boards is gold.

    Gold Jerry.

    Gold.

    Get on it.

  146. RexLibris says:

    Re: Eberle and his gritensity level.

    Would it be fair to characterize Patrick Sharp as a very good complementary offensive player?

    If we would like our team to emulate the Blackhawks I think Eberle probably compares most closely to the “Patrick Sharp” role minus the ability to play center.

    Sharp is by no means known as a physical player (although he takes a fair bit of punishment), and his penalty minutes per game over his career is 0.64. He peaked in 06-07 at 74 PIMS – coincidentally probably his worst year as a Blackhawk, but since has averaged in the range of 40 or fewer PIMs per season.

    Because he has won Stanley Cups nobody talks about him needing to get a little tougher, hit or fight.

    Eberle is what Eberle is, and he is pretty good at it.

    I think we’ve gotten so rag-dolled as fans the past few seasons that we can’t even appreciate what we have any more.

  147. oliveoilers says:

    RexLibris: Penner and pancakes?

    Penner and the puck, maybe. Penner and pancakes? No way, Jose!

    *Fun Fact* I was nearly divorced because I invested our retirement money in IHOP when Dustin was in town, and didn’t sell high when he was traded. Since then, I have invested in a private clinic specialising in shoulder surgeries, and some junior team out east called the Otters or some other stupid looking aquatic mammal.

  148. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: Lollygagger!!

    Get on there FFS.

    The tweets during games are worth it.

    Being able to Direct Message (private message) people you know from the boards is gold.

    Gold Jerry.

    Gold.

    Get on it.

    I was in on some of the GD chats when they ran over at FN and it was a blast.

    Time is a big factor. And the opportunity to sit and actually watch a game.

    Also the phone thing. Mine isn’t very smart. Maybe it needs a PBS app? Charlie Rose? Bill Moyers?

  149. RexLibris says:

    oliveoilers: Penner and the puck, maybe.Penner and pancakes?No way, Jose!

    *Fun Fact*I was nearly divorced because I invested our retirement money in IHOP when Dustin was in town, and didn’t sell high when he was traded.Since then, I have invested in a private clinic specialising in shoulder surgeries, and some junior team out east called the Otters or some other stupid looking aquatic mammal.

    I think you missed the boat on shoulders. That’s kind of passe now. Sort of a 2008 thing that Horcoff and Hemsky did. It’s like iTunes, the kids aren’t into that anymore.

    Now it’s all about internal injuries that aren’t flashy but reflect on one’s very being, sort of a medical version of the movement against conspicuous consumption. “My injury is internal, coach, sprained my soul last night when I went for Shwarma and all I could find was Falafel”.

    Hall out 6-8 weeks with Existential Angst. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ur5fGSBsfq8

    My GOD what I wouldn’t give to see that in a press release just once!

  150. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: I’m going to the Toilet Bowl tonight, can scarcely contain my excrement.

    ftfy

  151. oliveoilers says:

    The thought occurs that the Sabres are struggling to do what comes naturally to the Oilers; tank.

    Only two points back from us? You’re doing it wrong, Buffalo!

    We can step up our game. Nuge has an accident while shaving? Ebs pulls his hamstring practising Hemsky fly-bys? Gordon suddenly grows huge sideburns? Allow best d-man to be traded for low picks? We got game for tanking, Buffalo. What you got? Ted Nolan? Come at me, bro.

  152. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Woodguy: No, he’s not good.
    I follow FLA closely and he’s not good.

    I watch all Panthers games too.
    And I would agree he is by far the weak link to their defence.
    But that being said he’s only had just over a hundred NHL at bats and is a former 1st round pick.

  153. oliveoilers says:

    RexLibris: I think you missed the boat on shoulders. That’s kind of passe now. Sort of a 2008 thing that Horcoff and Hemsky did. It’s like iTunes, the kids aren’t into that anymore.

    Now it’s all about internal injuries that aren’t flashy but reflect on one’s very being, sort of a medical version of the movement against conspicuous consumption. “My injury is internal, coach, sprained my soul last night when I went for Shwarma and all I could find was Falafel”.

    Hall out 6-8 weeks with Existential Angst. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ur5fGSBsfq8

    My GOD what I wouldn’t give to see that in a press release just once!

    That was awesome! Watched it twice already.

    “Booked for accusing the ref of having no free will” Confucious say “Name go in book”

  154. G Money says:

    Bruce McCurdy: It’s like a meeting between a resistable force & a moveable object.

    I have (had) an employee here in the office who is a Flames fan, and I gave him the watercooler intro to fancy stats a while back. (It depressed him since he was part of the legion of “Flames for the Cup, woo!” fans here while they were winning. But it also meant he wasn’t at all surprised when they lost a bunch in a row).

    After he started getting his head around the basic ideas of the stats and what they tell us, we talked about examplars of shot metrics – LAK, CHI, BOS on the upside, EDM, TOR, CGY, COL, and BUF on the downside.

    Shortly thereafter, the Leafs with their extremely high shot rate for and shockingly terrible defense came to town to play the Flames and their incredibly terrible shot rate for and surprisingly sturdy defense.

    That was exactly the phrase I used: “It’s a contest to see what will crack first, the resistable force or the moveable object.”

    Given that BUF is an order of magnitude worse than any other team, including the Oilers, I’m not so sure the Toilet Bowl qualifies as a “contest” to the same extent.

    This is more like the resistable force meets the moveable object, except the moveable object is already racing faster than the eye can see down a frictionless incline.

  155. Rondo says:

    Bob McKenzie’s Mid Season Draft Ranking

    Names Lawson Crouse #1

    http://www.tsn.ca/mcdavid-the-unanimous-no-1-in-tsn-s-mid-season-ranking-1.193058

  156. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: I was in on some of the GD chats when they ran over at FN and it was a blast.

    Time is a big factor. And the opportunity to sit and actually watch a game.

    Also the phone thing. Mine isn’t very smart. Maybe it needs a PBS app? Charlie Rose? Bill Moyers?

    Put the crowbar in your wallet and get a google driven samsung.

    They don’t cost much.

  157. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris:
    Re: Eberle and his gritensity level.

    Would it be fair to characterize Patrick Sharp as a very good complementary offensive player?

    If we would like our team to emulate the Blackhawks I think Eberle probably compares most closely to the “Patrick Sharp” role minus the ability to play center.

    Sharp is by no means known as a physical player (although he takes a fair bit of punishment), and his penalty minutes per game over his career is 0.64. He peaked in 06-07 at 74 PIMS – coincidentally probably his worst year as a Blackhawk, but since has averaged in the range of 40 or fewer PIMs per season.

    Because he has won Stanley Cups nobody talks about him needing to get a little tougher, hit or fight.

    Eberle is what Eberle is, and he is pretty good at it.

    I think we’ve gotten so rag-dolled as fans the past few seasons that we can’t even appreciate what we have any more.

    That may be a fair comment.

    I remember Sharp being better on the boards, but that is all memory and I know that human memory reflect more wants and wishes rather than fact.

    I am as far from “he’s won a cup!” guy as there is.

  158. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris:
    Re: Eberle and his gritensity level.

    Would it be fair to characterize Patrick Sharp as a very good complementary offensive player?

    If we would like our team to emulate the Blackhawks I think Eberle probably compares most closely to the “Patrick Sharp” role minus the ability to play center.

    Sharp is by no means known as a physical player (although he takes a fair bit of punishment), and his penalty minutes per game over his career is 0.64. He peaked in 06-07 at 74 PIMS – coincidentally probably his worst year as a Blackhawk, but since has averaged in the range of 40 or fewer PIMs per season.

    Because he has won Stanley Cups nobody talks about him needing to get a little tougher, hit or fight.

    Eberle is what Eberle is, and he is pretty good at it.

    I think we’ve gotten so rag-dolled as fans the past few seasons that we can’t even appreciate what we have any more.

    I have often criticized others for criticizing players for not being more than they were rathar than appreciating them what they are.

    Hemsky was the poster child of this phenomenon.

    It may be that way with my perception of Eberle.

    For $6MM, I want a bit more though.

  159. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: Put the crowbar in your wallet and get a google driven samsung.

    They don’t cost much.

    I’m on the LT savings plan.

    😉

    Honestly, though, it isn’t in the budget right now. Feel like I’m going to have to pretty soon though. I’m not getting as many laughs from showing people my flip phone as I used to. When a joke gets old…

  160. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: I’m on the LT savings plan.

    Honestly, though, it isn’t in the budget right now. Feel like I’m going to have to pretty soon though. I’m not getting as many laughs from showing people my flip phone as I used to. When a joke gets old…

    How old are you?

    Honest question.

  161. RexLibris says:

    This one is for Bruce: http://xkcd.com/1473/

    Not ashamed to say, I laughed pretty hard.

  162. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: How old are you?

    Honest question.

    37, but I have an old soul.

  163. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris: 37, but I have an old soul.

    I have socks older than you. McKenzie’s list has all kinds of evil.

  164. Klima's_Bucket says:

    RexLibris: 37, but I have an old soul.

    I’m younger than you and still have a flip phone and an old soul too.
    Cheers Rex!

  165. Klima's_Bucket says:

    Anisimov is healthy and back in the Blue Jackets lineup tonight.
    Cue the Perron to Columbus rumors…er… nevermind…
    That 29th overall pick is going to be slick though!!

  166. Магия 10 says:
  167. Tarkus says:

    RexLibris: 37, but I have an old soul.

    37, huh?

    I didn’t know you were called Dennis. 🙂

  168. BrazilianOil says:

    Anybody knows how many fights have been involved Gazdic this season?

  169. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: 37, but I have an old soul.

    Are you the sole bread winner for your family?

  170. Woodguy says:

    Магия 10:
    http://www.tsn.ca/mcdavid-the-unanimous-no-1-in-tsn-s-mid-season-ranking-1.193058

    mcdavid, eichel, hanifin, strome, marner, crouse

    Crouse with be taken 8th or so and it will be about 12 spots too many.

  171. Магия 10 says:

    RexLibris:
    This one is for Bruce: http://xkcd.com/1473/

    Not ashamed to say, I laughed pretty hard.

    He’s still pixilated. He sure is!

  172. Woodguy says:

    Tarkus: 37, huh?

    I didn’t know you were called Dennis.

    There’s a lovey bit of filth over here.

    Oh!

    How’d ya do.

    ..
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    King eh? Well I didn’t vote for you.

  173. Магия 10 says:

    Woodguy: Crouse with be taken 8th or so and it will be about 12 spots too many.

    defenders are hard to slot and you never know which will rise and fall, but there’s a point after the top 5 and before crouse where a bunch might jump in.

  174. Woodguy says:

    Магия 10: defenders are hard to slot and you never know which will rise and fall, but there’s a point after the top 5 and before crouse where a bunch might jump in.

    NYR taking McIrath and letting Fowler slide to ANA is one of my favorite draft memories.

    Good F’s taken when Fowler slid, but McIrath?

    Nice work Slats.

    Your legacy is alive and well in Edmonton.

  175. Unicorns says:

    RexLibris:
    Re: Eberle and his gritensity level.

    Would it be fair to characterize Patrick Sharp as a very good complementary offensive player?

    If we would like our team to emulate the Blackhawks I think Eberle probably compares most closely to the “Patrick Sharp” role minus the ability to play center.

    Sharp is by no means known as a physical player (although he takes a fair bit of punishment), and his penalty minutes per game over his career is 0.64. He peaked in 06-07 at 74 PIMS – coincidentally probably his worst year as a Blackhawk, but since has averaged in the range of 40 or fewer PIMs per season.

    Because he has won Stanley Cups nobody talks about him needing to get a little tougher, hit or fight.

    Eberle is what Eberle is, and he is pretty good at it.

    I think we’ve gotten so rag-dolled as fans the past few seasons that we can’t even appreciate what we have any more.

    Rex I don’t think skill players have to try to hit a bunch, but there is way too high a comfort level in getting beat in battles and soft plays. It’s an immaturity in many Oiler’s game, and that is why they lose – too many not willing to do the dirty work and play with discipline.

    Sharp isn’t a banger but he’s Pouliot’s size and does more than look for breakaways and a set up. I’m being hard on Eberle but as WG is saying he limits himself. He is pretty meh defensively for a player entering prime with lots of games. Really he’s Gagner plus 10 points. That’s a big part of what makes the Oilers so weak.

    He’s not good enough to have Hall and Nuge playing harder than him to set him up – he should be supporting them, they are the better players despite the points. Willis has a piece at COH and is probably right, he’s dipped in value. Next time he gets hot and looks good I’d take a good deal if I found it.

  176. hunter1909 says:

    Just got back from a fantastic liquid lunch. This after spending the night before on a royal bender. Life is good. Just in time to settle in and wait for the biggest game of the Oilers season. Lose this one boys, and you’re in 30th place!

    Now this might not end up being sustainable, what with Todd Nelson’s uber cool persona and all, but we can hope.

    Very happy Eberle managed to lose the last game. He’s a sensational player, no doubt dragged deep into a Sly and the Family Stone level funk by Eakins. Nelson’s good, but he’s taking over a team in the middle of a season. No training camp, nothing. We can’t expect miracles.

    MacT is such a freak. Should he deal the serviceable vets for futures no doubt the team heads straight back to the toilet next year, which by definition is insanity.

  177. RexLibris says:

    Woodguy: There’s a lovey bit of filth over here.

    Oh!

    How’d ya do.

    ..
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    .
    King eh? Well I didn’t vote for you.

    lol

    I wish this was an anarcho syndicalist commune. We could take turns trading and then re-signing Petry.

  178. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: I have socks older than you. McKenzie’s list has all kinds of evil.

    Now I know what to get you for Christmas.

  179. RexLibris says:

    Unicorns,

    Agreed.

    My point is that a player is often judged in the context of their team.

    Eberle is being judged harshly in part because of the weaknesses of the roster.

    Krejci is considered all world as a talent because but he is also elevated in the public perception because he plays with Lucic, Marchand, and Chara.

    He’s a darned good player, but public perception frames a singular player’s reputation by unconsciously adding in the context of the larger roster.

    Rather than throw Eberle away for toughness, why not keep Eberle and add toughness another way. Toughness isn’t that expensive, but a winger with Eberle’s skill is.

  180. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris: Now I know what to get you for Christmas.

    DO NOT GET ME SOCKS. My kids buy me socks every Christmas. I have 9,0000

  181. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: DO NOT GET ME SOCKS. My kids buy me socks every Christmas. I have 9,0000

    But they go so well with sandals…

  182. Tarkus says:

    RexLibris: lol

    I wish this was an anarcho syndicalist commune. We could take turns trading and then re-signing Petry.

    I thought we were an autonomous connective devoted to finding out whether Todd Nelson weighs the same as a duck.

  183. Lowetide says:

    RexLibris: But they go so well with sandals…

    Heh. That’s a good look. 🙂

  184. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    Complete players who are elite offensively are like Hossa, Toews, Parise, Crosby, Zetterburg, Datsyuk, Malkin, Kopitar, Carter, etc.

    I think Eberle could be part of that group.

    Ebs is more Kane than Hossa. Nature of the beast.

    EDIT: Or Sharp, maybe a better comp in some ways though Ebs is near Kane level for dangling.

  185. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy: Lollygagger!!

    Get on there FFS.

    The tweets during games are worth it.

    Being able to Direct Message (private message) people you know from the boards is gold.

    Gold Jerry.

    Gold.

    Get on it.

    When you do, follow @BruceMcCurdy & he’ll follow you back. He follows quite a number of the commenters here.

  186. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Didn’t I post this just the other day?

    http://youtu.be/01R_lP51Pw0?t=1m34s

    It’s a sock-crazed week, month?, maybe.

  187. VanOil says:

    Woodguy: Crouse with be taken 8th or so and it will be about 12 spots too many.

    Please let the Leafs pick him. If they draft for skill like they did last year they may not suck forever.

  188. Bruce McCurdy says:

    RexLibris:
    This one is for Bruce: http://xkcd.com/1473/

    Not ashamed to say, I laughed pretty hard.

    So did I. Hahaha.

  189. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Watch out! Those Sabres mean business!

  190. Lowetide says:

    Scrivens starts, I think Edmonton scores 7.

  191. Auston Matthews '16 says:

    Lowetide:
    Scrivens starts, I think Edmonton scores 7.

    Okay, but who wins?

  192. Woodguy says:

    RexLibris: lol

    I wish this was an anarcho syndicalist commune. We could take turns trading and then re-signing Petry.

    Now we see the violence inherit in the system!

    Come see the violence inherit in the system!!

    Come see the violence inherit in the system!!

    Help! Help! I’m being repressed!

  193. Woodguy says:

    VanOil: Please let the Leafs pick him. If they draft for skill like they did last year they may not suck forever.

    Crouse is a truculent Burkie type player.

    We’ll see where CAL drafts.

    Not saying he’s won’t be a NHLer, but probably won’t fulfill his draft spot expectation.

  194. VanOil says:

    Game predictions; Combined shots from both teams will be less than 40, yet it will be a high scoring game with both goal tenders posting less than .900 sv%

  195. hunter1909 says:

    The fourth rebuild stayed up.

  196. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: When you do, follow @BruceMcCurdy & he’ll follow you back. He follows quite a number of the commenters here.

    The only thing you have to put up with Bruce is that he always thinks he’s right.

    Very annoying for those of us who actually are.

  197. Woodguy says:

    VanOil:
    Game predictions; Combined shots from both teams will be less than 40, yet it will be a high scoring game with both goal tenders posting less than .900 sv%

    First goalie to .850 wins!

  198. Woodguy says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Ebs is more Kane than Hossa. Nature of the beast.

    EDIT: Or Sharp, maybe a better comp in some ways though Ebs is near Kane level for dangling.

    I’d agree with that.

    I’d also think that Kane will be overpaid given the quality of minutes he scores in.

    Best soft minute killer in the NHL.

    Amazing talent, but a team of Hossa’s beat a team of Kane’s 8-4 about 80% of the time.

Newer Comments »

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!
© Copyright - Lowetide.ca