A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE

Justin Schultz looked good by eye and by math last night. Justin Schultz looked good by eye and math last night. He received lots of positive words after the St. Louis game, but for me the Nashville game was far better. Before we get to the numbers for the blue, a few things:

  • Lots of people all over Sekera for the first GA last night and he certainly did stickhandle himself into a corner. That said, Mark Letestu needed to offer support there (staying high, making sure Edmonton wasn’t outnumbered by Preds). You can blame Sekera and that’s fine, but it’s also true the rest of the team has to be better in terms of positioning and awareness there.
  • I expect it’s going to be a very difficult year for Andrew Ference, wrote about it here.  The only thing that may change? Ference may end up playing fewer than 28 games. There’s no defense of the mistake by the former captain last night, so I will offer none. When a veteran makes a rookie play, well I guess that must be hockey’s circle of life. The contract ends summer 2017, Edmonton can buy him out next summer. Todd McLellan will have to decide how many games the veteran will see in the coming months. Not an easy situation on either side of the equation.

THE BLUE LAST NIGHT, IN A BOX

oct 10 d

The ZS’s didn’t really have a dungeon last night, but the Klefbom—Schultz pairing faced the toughest and came out above 50%. Sekera was in fact used in a strong OZone role and I like that adjustment—for me that’s good usage, although would have thought Schultz was the more obvious choice. Ference—Gryba were solid by the numbers and Gryba impresses me as a guy who can actually defend (he has no offensive potential at all, however). Ference we discussed above.

THE CENTERS LAST NIGHT, IN A BOX

oct 10 c

Nuge was splendid last night, I’m loving his progress as a player. He’s not perfect, and when he makes a mistake it’s back of the net because Oilers, but he’s an excellent NHL center. McDavid got the push (like he should) and for me there’s simply too much there to worry about two games without a point. When he breaks out, he’ll probably score two extra to make up for the last two games. DO NOT WORRY about Connor McDavid, he’ll be fine. The Lander and Letestu lines had tough nights.

I wanted to highlight McDavid’s night because it may have seen a turning point for Todd McLellan and his search for hockey chemistry. Remember, McD was 59% overall 5×5 Corsi for %.

MCDAVID LINEMATES LAST NIGHT

  • Nail Yakupov 8-4 .667 Corsi events (6:23 EV TOI)
  • Benoit Pouliot 8-6 .571 Corsi events (8:38 EV TOI)
  • Lauri Korpikoski 5-5 .500 Corsi events (4:42 EV TOI)
  • Source

The McDavid—Yakupov chemistry may kill Don Cherry, but we’re going to have to risk it. The young Russian looked effective and rapido out there, with the added appeal of Hall emerging on the Nuge line with nine shots. These things take time to develop and never say never with regard to Hall—McDavid, but Don Cherry may be wise to start looking at the Kingston phone books for the “Yakupov” surname. MUST be a connection!

WINGERS LAST NIGHT, IN A BOX

oct 10 f

People are all over Purcell, but he made a splendid pass to Hall for the point blank last night, should have been a goal and will be when Hall finds the groove. I think McLellan will run Hall with Nuge and Purcell until Eberle gets back, and would be shocked if we don’t see McDavid with Yak and Poo next game.

Which brings me to Slepyshev. I think we may see him sent to Bakersfield in the next few days, with Leon Draisaitl a possible recall. TC impressions can fool people and I think it’s wise to allow this young man to find his game. I felt at the time the right call involved keeping Draisaitl and sending out Slepy and the handling of Anton Lander compels Peter Chiarelli to make this move.

Edmonton is between a rock and a hard place with Andrew Ference, but there’s no such barrier for a Slepyshev—Draisaitl swap. That should happen today.

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217 Responses to "A ROCK AND A HARD PLACE"

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  1. flyfish1168 says:

    JMHO. I am not a fan of cherry. He picks on players when they are down. But his leash on Canadian players is long. He has picked on Nail endlessly of the last few years. He always states he never kick a player when they are down. Total lie. I twittered cherry numerous times about Nails great deed with the homeless and that is worth mentioning on coaches corner. Not a peep . i hope he chokes on it when Nail and Conner succeeds together.

  2. Mr DeBakey says:

    People are all over Purcell

    Every effin day!
    “He’s slow”
    “He’s soft”
    “He has bad hair”
    Blah Blah Blah

    Purcell is a solid, overpaid NHLer.
    He usually helps when he’s on the ice.
    He’s gone July 1.

  3. anonymous says:

    I’m sure the oilers would have been much more thankful had they started in Arizona/Dallas rather than St. Louis/ Nashville. Really tough and last year we would have been looking at 5-1 scores.

    Really hoping for Yak/Mcdavid. I’d guess that being Connors’ wing man is likely the only chance Yak has at cementing himself into the core.

  4. oliveoilers says:

    Talbot gave us a chance and two personal errors put us two down.

    That said, we still didn’t score a goal and last I checked, you have to score at least one more than the other team to win. But I think TMac will be concentrating on that next practice. I’m liking the structured breakouts. Might be TMac is building one little piece at a time, and we don’t have quite the stable of vets he had in SJ.

    Could it be that Ebs is the pace-maker for the team? Knows when to hold up the play, knows when to shoot. Deadly in tight.

    Purcell is so ‘meh’ it’s unbelievable. I would take consistent play over the love/hate show he’s putting up now.

    It’s coming, it really is.

  5. oliveoilers says:

    Mr DeBakey:
    People are all over Purcell

    Every effin day!
    “He’s slow”
    “He’s soft”
    “He has bad hair”
    Blah Blah Blah

    Purcell is a solid, overpaid NHLer.
    He usually helps when he’s on the ice.
    He’s gone July 1.

    He certainly helped Tarasenko on his breakaway the other night. At least hook the bastard down.

  6. Ice Sage says:

    Oilers still improved over end of last season… sitting in 24th place this morning.

  7. godot10 says:

    Where have all the people who always want to trade Eberle gone?

  8. böök¡je says:

    One issue I have always had with Ference is his personal responsibility. Last night after the game he blamed the Zamboni door for the ‘bad bounce’ that led to the goal against. I’m not sure I have ever heard him be self critical.

  9. Athabascajim says:

    Don’t panic on McDavid after 2 games but panic on Slepyshev. Why? Seems to me his #’s are pretty similar to Korpikosky? What happened to preaching patience? The kid is working hard and certainly not afraid to engage in the tough areas, something we haven’t seen many Oilers do in the past.

  10. Hockey Buddha says:

    Yakupov and McDavid–Here’s hoping Yakupov runs with it! It would do our team a world of good. I do think some fans tend to under value Taylor Hall. He’s a player who can carry this team on his back, when he’s playing well.

  11. Lowetide says:

    Athabascajim:
    Don’t panic on McDavid after 2 games but panic on Slepyshev. Why? Seems to me his #’s are pretty similar to Korpikosky? What happened to preaching patience? The kid is working hard and certainly not afraid to engage in the tough areas, something we haven’t seen many Oilers do in the past.

    Why do people use the word panic in all conversations?

  12. oliveoilers says:

    Lowetide: Don’t panic

    Lowetide: Why do people use the word panic in all conversations?

    HHGTTG?

    Thanks for all the fish.

  13. godot10 says:

    Pakarenin is more likely to be the first forward called up than anyone else, including Draisaitl.

  14. John Chambers says:

    So we have a goalie, three top-4 D, and what should be an excellent 5-6 pair in Reinhart and Gryba.

    The areas of greatest concern appear to be areas of strength. Can’t wait to see an Oiler player actually score a goal.

  15. admiralmark says:

    I just can’t see a 1st or 2nd pairing player in Schultz. I really don’t get the optimism on this player. I will admit I have a general understanding of analytics so I wont argue to that point. But by eye he makes bad passes. gets stripped of teh puck and shows little effort to skate back when its needed. Can I see him being utilized in the NHL? Sure i guess. But 1st line pairing, 2nd pairing? God no. Not if I expect to go anywhere in the playoffs. Sorry. Just one mans opinion.

  16. Pouzar says:

    oliveoilers: Could it be that Ebs is the pace-maker for the team?

    I’ve been screaming it for 3 years. Yes he is. Wheat did a nice analysis of it. The WOWYs don’t lie. He makes others better.

  17. Gret99zky says:

    Talbot has been a beauty so far.

    The d has been much better than expected. (see last few years) I mean we’re not getting killed.

    The forwards will figure it out and get rolling. Especially at home.

    TBH, I don’t expect a lot of wins in the first 10 or 12 games. Just improvement. And because I’m seeing it, there is no reason to PANIC.

    I think Chia will put Ference to the “he will be a professional about it” test. Not going to see the ice for a long while.

  18. Frank the dog says:

    admiralmark:
    I just can’t see a 1st or 2nd pairing player in Schultz. I really don’t get the optimism on this player. I will admit I have a general understanding of analytics so I wont argue to that point. But by eye he makes bad passes. gets stripped of teh puck and shows little effort to skate back when its needed. Can I see him being utilized in the NHL? Sure i guess. But 1st line pairing, 2nd pairing? God no. Not if I expect to go anywhere in the playoffs. Sorry. Just one mans opinion.

    Soft college kid that lacks gritensity and has too much eye shadow. That’s his problem!
    Outside of that have you watched him this season, or are you going on memory and last year’s impressions?
    He gets the puck out of the d-zone, spends most of his time in the o-zone, got right in a players face after a dirty hit on Klef, and is a constant scoring threat on the ice. I’ve also noticed a reduction in the Jultz factor.
    I’m a lot less worried about Jultz than I am about Teddy and Andrew. One is a liability and the other has better offensive options available.

  19. SwedishPoster says:

    Watched the highlights from Stars-Avs last night and Dallas defensive play looked every bit as awful as their D core looks on paper. Should be a great opportunity to get the offense going. If they can play a structured game the scoring chances should present themselves.

  20. Магия 10 says:

    godot10:
    Where have all the people who always want to trade Eberle gone?

    I think they’ve been placed on the IR.

  21. Bootstrap Effexor says:

    Why do people use the word panic in all conversations?

    Because after you use up all the lighter fluid burning one’s former management in effigy, there’s none left to drink.

    ———

    Marwood: Give me a Valium, I’m getting the FEAR!

    Danny: [very calmly] You have done something to your brain. You have made it high. If I lay 10 mls of diazepam on you, it will do something else to your brain. You will make it low. Why trust one drug and not the other? That’s politics, innit?

    Marwood: I’m gonna eat some sugar.

    [he goes to the kitchen]

    Danny: I recommend you smoke some more grass.

    Marwood: No way, no fucking way.

    Danny: That is an unfortunate political decision. Reflecting these times.

    Withnail: What are you talking about, Danny?

    Danny: Politics, man. If you’re hanging onto an unrising balloon, you’re presented with a difficult decision – let go before your thumbs get funny or hang on getting snider or suicider, posing the question: how long can you keep a grip on the unmoving rope? They’re selling Where’s Waldo Weeping in Woolworths, man—forty-one pages of a no-pointilistic orange and blue blur decked out in brown paper bags[*]. The greatest lotto-ball bull run in the history of hockey is over. And as Athabascajim here has so insistently pointed out, we have failed to paint it maximum plaid[**].

    ———

    [*] You can find him. He’s the only one not drinking lighter fluid.

    ———

    [**] The actor who plays Withnail is famous for never once breaking character. He is not I.

    ———

    Yes, as everyone can probably tell, I finally watched Withnail and I last night, our last movie night in our old movie cocoon before moving to a new place closer to pony.

    ———

    Trivia: “Withnail” is actually just a misspelling of some bloke the author knew from his childhood named “Withnall”.

  22. Ca$h-McMoney! says:

    Remember when Hall didn’t score for, what, the first 10 games? Now that was a panic.

  23. Lowetide says:

    admiralmark:
    I just can’t see a 1st or 2nd pairing player in Schultz. I really don’t get the optimism on this player. I will admit I have a general understanding of analytics so I wont argue to that point. But by eye he makes bad passes. gets stripped of teh puck and shows little effort to skate back when its needed. Can I see him being utilized in the NHL? Sure i guess. But 1st line pairing, 2nd pairing? God no. Not if I expect to go anywhere in the playoffs. Sorry. Just one mans opinion.

    That’s pretty much how I feel, but he has improved and that has to be acknowledged. If they keep him with Klefbom he is de facto top 4D.

  24. metallicat says:

    I would get Gazdik or Klinkhammer off the roster before Slep. Bring up Draisaitl and bump Slep down. Draisaitl – McDavid – Yakupov and see what happens.

    Edit – by bump Slep down, I mean down the lineup, not to the AHL.

  25. Bag of Pucks says:

    godot10:
    Where have all the people who always want to trade Eberle gone?

    There’s one untradeable player on this team and he wears #97

  26. dustrock says:

    My more sober, morning after summary: you could see the kids fighting their instincts to play the perimeter game and employ T-Mac game plan. RNH and Hall were as heavy on the puck as I’ve ever seen them.

    Talbot is a legit #1 (in this case belay the small sample size!). Absent 2 horrific errors, the D were composed.

    You’re not going to beat Nashville in their arena 5v5, you have to hustle and hope to draw some penalties. They did exactly that, and 0-5 on the PP. That is the difference in the game. They get even one PP goal and we’re thinking about our chances in OT.

    Also, just like against the Blues, you can see how valuable Draisaitl is going to be for this team. He’s a heavy player and great along the boards.

  27. Bar_Qu says:

    Lowetide: That’s pretty much how I feel, but he has improved and that has to be acknowledged. If they keep him with Klefbom he is de facto top 4D.

    J Schultz is the opposite of what befalls most poor fellows who desire a career in the NHL. He has been given so many chances beyond what his on-ice performance merits, that now he will end up with a reasonably long career playing with another D who will keep his warts from being too apparent.

    Somewhere other failed NHL prospects are gnashing their teeth for the lack of the same opportunity afforded to them.

    Whatta business, this game.

  28. dustrock says:

    Also for more sober reflection, it’s 2 games guys. The Yotes look like SC finalists. Sidney Crosby doesn’t have a shot through 2 games.

  29. ashley says:

    Another nice outing last night. The Preds are never going to give much space or opportunity, especially at home, but I thought the Oilers made the most of the space and opportunities that they created.

    My only criticism: I think the forward talent could be better used by using the whole width of the ice with quick passing. They don’t get a chance to set up much because they don’t recover the dump and chase. I believe some of the smart people here have done work on zone entries and carrying is better than dumping. NSH was standing up at the blueline, so perhaps the carry-in was the intention and aborted based on the situation. Still, a better play might be to hit someone slightly behind the play in the middle or across the ice so they can carry it in.

    When they do set up, I think Schultz is a bit quick to pull the trigger. It takes a lot of work to get possession in the O zone. There may be much higher scoring opportunities available if he doesn’t shoot after the first pass. At a minimum, he needs to have rebounders near the net before he unloads. He doesn’t have a great shot, so if we’re going to have someone shooting from the point after one pass the moment we have possession, I would pick someone else like Yakupov instead of him.

    I was worried on the day of the season-opener that our roster didn’t look much different than the previous year. I think that is still true to some extent except in the crease, and the goalie is making a big difference. However, this team looks a LOT better than last year. Also, the team seems to be executing better and supporting the puck at both ends of the ice. This might be coaching.

    I think we have a much better team on our hands. I’m excited. If some things go our way this year on the injury front, I can see this team challenging for a bottom playoff spot. We have finally turned North.

  30. Pouzar says:

    I am in the “Leave Drai in Bakersfield” camp. Just sayin.

  31. John Chambers says:

    Bar_Qu,

    Fair point however Justin Schultz is probably the teams 2nd or 3rd best skater. His performance at all levels prior to the NHL was exceptional and certainly indicative of being capable of excelling in the bigs.

    It was probably Schultz’s last chance, but it appears he’s overcoming the awful coaching he’s been subject to under Eakins.

  32. stush18 says:

    LT why do you hate slepyshev?

    Management said they wanted drai to work on his defense. We were all so enamoured with slepy in preseason that we werent paying attention to drai.

    He does stand around too much, and like nurse, he tries to use his physical traits to overpower like they did in junior. ITs not going to work.

    Hes obviosly great in the offensive zone, but he still needs to work on things. Id much rather have him doing that in the AHL than in the NHL. Slepy is 21 and has been playing against men for years. He was ready for the next step.

  33. GCW_69 says:

    Bag of Pucks: There’s one untradeable player on this team and he wears #97

    That’s would be a mistake. Eberle brings a unique skill set to this team. After watching the last two games I would add Eberle. The team needs someone who can consistently find the soft spot on the ice and close the deal, and that player is Eberle.

  34. DBO says:

    Balance?

    Hall-Nuge-Purcell (Eberle)
    Pou-McDavid-Yak
    Draisatl-Lander-Slepeshev
    Hendricks-Letestu-Korpikoski

    Or is that two lines that need sheltering? Although when Eberle returns Purcell can move to 3rd line to add a vet there instead of Slepeshev

  35. Caramel Obvious says:

    Reposted from the end of the game thread:

    That reminded me a lot of the good Eakins’ teams. Play well, deserve better, sunk by terrible mistakes.

    In an alternate universe where Talbot was on the team last year things would have been very different.

    The Ference problem is easily correctable. The offense, on the other hand, is somewhat concerning. It had an Eakins flair to it, lots of possession without a lot of great chances.

    Yakupov can’t buy a goal.

    That said, our impressions are affected by results. It’s not like Nashville had tons of chances either. As Knightown has pointed out so well this is the new NHL.

  36. Bar_Qu says:

    John Chambers,

    Fair enough. It just seems there are many players every year who disappear from the league for one “flaw” or another and it is just starting to feel like JS will hang around as Klef’s partner for a long time, if he wisely takes a 4 something deal for a number of years after this one.

    If he improves this year and can contribute/not be a liability in the top 4, well then, he will have done much better than I would have believed in May.

  37. Bag of Pucks says:

    I’m a big believer that timing is a massive factor for success in life, and it appears that maybe for the first time in his Oiler career, Nail could benefit from fortuitous timing.

    The first players to get the push in front of him (Slep & Hall) failed to find chemistry with the wunderkind. If Eberle were in the lineup, he likely would be getting the next push, but he’s not.

    Thus, Nail meets that fateful moment where preparation meets opportunity.

    One of the core dysfunctions of this team imo has been the failure of the ‘cool kids’ to welcome the talented oddball in their mix and find a way to mesh their talents.

    What does Nail need to succeed?

    1) A Centre willing to take the time to communicate with him, with the patience to find that sympatico
    2) A Centre with the speed and defensive coverage skills to cover for Nail’s positional errors
    3) A simple mission: Forecheck hard, get to open ice in a strong position to shoot, fight through traffic for rebounds, backcheck like the hounds of hell are on your heels

    Connor checks the first two boxes. Let’s hope Nail’s ready to check the third.

    Nail as sniper vs Nail as bust, it’s a critical factor in this rebuild.

  38. stush18 says:

    ashley,

    I would love to see them use the entire offensive zone.

    There are moments when they go cross ice to the far dman, but usually only purcell makes that pass.

    They seem to cycle without a purpose. I would like to see one forward slip to behind the net and just past the far post.

    The forward behind the net is used to open up the ice. Their dman has to follow you. If all three forwards cycle in the same corner, you leave zero room for an opportunity on offense.

    Two forwards can cycle the puck just as easily as two. Especially with the extra room on the ice.

    If you toss the puck hard behind the net, we can pick it up, and hit the weak side dman for a shot, or set up a cycle in the opposite corner.

    Or we can send it to the front of the net, and our forwards will hopefully have a step on there men.

    Hopefully while setting up the cycle in the opposite corner, a man is lost in coverage.

    Edit* I mention this because I know detroit used a version of this, and I assumed Mclellan would as well. Not seeing it however.

  39. Woodguy says:

    Justin Schultz looked good by eye and by math last night. Justin Schultz looked good by eye and math last night.

    After you wrote that did you get the papers get the papers?

  40. B S says:

    admiralmark,

    Have you watched the last couple of games? The only knock on him you mentioned that might still stand is his passing. Doesn’t mean he’ll keep it up all season. but if he does he could still be a solid top 4 Dman.

  41. John Chambers says:

    Bar_Qu,

    Agreed with you there.

    You might say Taylor Fedun or Brad Hunt had a couple of deficiencies which have constrained them from becoming NHL regulars and that the Oilers (or other teams) weren’t willing to spend the patience to overcome.

    That said, Schultz’s skating ability is what sets him apart.

  42. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy:
    Justin Schultz looked good by eye and by math last night. Justin Schultz looked good by eye and math last night.

    After you wrote that did you get the papers get the papers?

    I just wanted to make sure the point was made. Point was made.

  43. Bag of Pucks says:

    GCW_69After watching the last two games I would add Eberle.

    Possibly two games is not a definitive sample size.

  44. flyfish1168 says:

    Watched most of the game between the nucks and phlegms last evening. Both teams defensemen engaged alot in the offensive zone. At times you see as many as 5 players crowded around the Miller or Hillier. The D or one of the playes in the scrum would kick out and start a cycle and put the puck back into play with a shot on net and the scrum fights for the rebound. Always someone driving to the net.

  45. fifthcartel says:

    Matt Irwin on waivers. Played under McLellan the last couple years, hmm..

  46. oliveoilers says:

    dustrock: Sidney Crosby doesn’t have a shot through 2 games.

    Trade the bum. Trade the bum!

  47. G Money says:

    Expected goals chart for last nights game from DTMAboutHeart:

    pic.twitter.com/ciiHX68MjY— DTM About Heart (@DTMAboutHeart) October 11, 2015

    xG is a different calculational approach but fundamentally similar to my (still nascent and waiting for war-on-ice data files) Danger Adjusted Fenwick – it estimates how many goals a team should have been expected to score given shot locations and shot types.

    Like most other measures so far, it shows the Oilers to have a slight edge (1.4 to 1.2 at EV, 0.5 to 0.4 on PP).

    The idea that the Oilers played a ‘perimeter game’ ignores the fact that it was actually a fairly tight defensive game and neither team got that many chances, and the Oilers did indeed have a number of chances in close.

    The Oilers didn’t capitalize (or in one case, got it called back due to a kick), while the Predators did.

    The other thing to recognize is that much of the Predators “defensive prowess” involved a lot of hooking, holding, and interference. There should have been a lot more power plays for the Oilers if the NHL cared even a whit to avoid a return of the dead puck era, which last season showed they clearly don’t. Last night was a dead puck game.

    Brain farts (unexpected from Sekera, expected from Ference) aside, one key to last nights loss was the Oiler power play, which for the second night in a row looked completely inept (until the last one, which actually looked dangerous).

    The issue at hand now is whether or not you think the two games so far are indicative of how TMc’s power play will look the rest of the season.

    One positive note is that Taylor Hall, not having to adapt to and to some extent babysit two rookies, was back to his beastly self, taking 9 shot attempts, creating multiple dangerous chances, and setting up several more.

  48. oliveoilers says:

    LT: Just read your ON article.

    “……the ghost of Toby Peterson….”

    Possibly one of the funniest things I’ve read in a long time!

  49. Woogie63 says:

    Pouzar,

    I agree, bringing Driasaitl back now does not solve the issues why you sent him to the AHL. Ken Holland has talked about the damage done when you yoyo a player between the leagues.

    Godot10 has identified Pakarinen has a better option, this is the right player to replace Slepy.
    Pakarinen will bring a better forecheck and heaviness that we are missing.

    13 hits last night.

  50. oliveoilers says:

    I think we should appoint Shia LaBeouf as head of Oilers PR.

  51. SwedishPoster says:

    One thing they did well under Nelson was the D to D pass along the offensive blue line which created space and opportunity, imo a huge part of the improved offense under Nelson. We haven’t seen that enough so far if you ask me, instead we’ve seen the D shooting the puck right after they get it on the blue line, even if they are near the boards, the result have been Gryba et al shooting into the block. I do understand the idea behind getting the early shot and I realize you can’t make that pass every time and risk causing turnovers but with how little space you’re given in the NHL that pass is one of the best ways to open up the ice in the offensive zone. While also gifting your D partner a better shooting lane.
    It’s also fairly tricky to defend because you can’t play to cut off the pass as that would open up other lanes.
    I don’t know just something I’ve noticed. Both Yak and McD have had a bunch of passes back to the D along the boards who’s fired the puck straight into a blocking D or into the boards when there’s a nice lane across to the other D. Might change with confidence and getting used to the new systems, might be McLellan wanting shots early and often.

    One thing I always noted when watching the Sharks under Mclellan was that they put a lot of pucks on net, corsi gods, but didn’t seem overly efficient in scoring actual goals in relation to how often they outshot the opponent. I don’t have stats to back it up, on my phone so the digging will have to wait, but just something I’ve noticed. A lot of nights where the opposing goalie made loads of saves. Scrivens big night is one example. Could be that it catches your attention when it happens.

  52. McSorley33 says:

    I think I am going to have to apologize to Gryba……yes, he is slow. But as a 3rd pairing guy he can make a pass. 2 extremeley heads up passes last night that were short but very effective.

    Sekera will get better.

    Schultz….and I am choking as I type…..looks good.

    Love the idea of Yak getting a shot with MCD….

    2nd best chance of last night …Mcd to yak for quick release shot.

    I predict our forward group breaks out next game.

  53. Lowetide says:

    oliveoilers:
    LT:Just read your ON article.

    “……the ghost of Toby Peterson….”

    Possibly one of the funniest things I’ve read in a long time!

    Haha. It was the first name that popped in my brain, so I knew it was right. 🙂

  54. Lowetide says:

    McSorley33:
    I think I am going to have to apologize to Gryba……yes, he is slow. But as a 3rd pairing guy he can make a pass. 2 extremeley heads up passes last night that were short but very effective.

    Sekera will get better.

    Schultz….and I am choking as I type…..looks good.

    Love the idea of Yak getting a shot with MCD….

    2nd best chance of last night …Mcd to yak for quick release shot.

    I predict our forward group breaks out next game.

    Travis Yost pegged him well before the season. He can defend, won’t help in the offensive end. If they can find a legit puck mover to roll with him, I like the pairing.

  55. Woodguy says:

    The offense, on the other hand, is somewhat concerning. It had an Eakins flair to it, lots of possession without a lot of great chances.

    Oiler fans better be ready for this.

    Last year they called it “gaming corsi” because their disdain for Eakins and their lack of knowlege on how some coaches’ systems work.

    Note: I am not saying you were a “gaming corsi” person, your comments just reminded me it.

    Eakins was trying to emulate McLellan’s team in the offensive zone with tons of shots and net pressure.

    Getting this team to actually create the net pressure was an issue and McLellan is dealing with that now.

    Now that we have McLellan…..well we have McLellan, I wonder if we will see the “gaming corsi” comments?

    Consider this:

    Two seasons of data – 13/14-14/15 (all data 5v5 and courtesy of stats.hockeyanalsis)

    CorsiFor/60 – 60.8 – 1st in the NHL – Sharks
    ShotsFor/60 – 31.1 – 4th in NHL – Sharks
    GoalsFor/60 – 2.26 – 14th in NHL – Sharks

    Lots of shot attempts, lots of shots, average in goals.

    Is that gaming corsi or just a strategy to score?

    Is it the right strategy for EDM?

    Here’s something interesting I stumbled upon when looking at these numbers:

    Goals/60 / Corsi/60 which is your goal conversion rates from corsi events (same data, last 2 years 5v5)

    Colorado 0.0488
    Anaheim 0.0484
    Tampa Bay 0.0458
    St. Louis 0.0444
    Columbus 0.0441
    Minnesota 0.0438
    Nashville 0.0434
    Dallas 0.0434
    Calgary 0.0430
    NY Rangers 0.0428
    Pittsburgh 0.0428
    Toronto 0.0427
    Chicago 0.0420
    Detroit 0.0416
    Boston 0.0414
    Winnipeg 0.0413
    Ottawa 0.0409
    Florida 0.0402
    Washington 0.0401
    NY Islanders 0.0401
    Vancouver 0.0400
    Montreal 0.0398
    Philadelphia 0.0393
    Edmonton 0.0387
    New Jersey 0.0383
    San Jose 0.0372
    Los Angeles 0.0362
    Buffalo 0.0359
    Carolina 0.0339
    Arizona 0.0337

    Huh. SJS actually had a worse conversion rate than Edmonton.

    Both were near the bottom of the league.

    Its interesting that the top of chart is full of teams that are usually sited as “out performing their corsi”, except STL, who are a good corsi team AND have a high conversion rate.

    I’m going to dig into this deeper. I’m going to look at these rates and see if we can find anything to think about when comparing them to Scoring Chance rates and High Danger Scoring Chance rates.

  56. oliveoilers says:

    Lowetide: Haha. It was the first name that popped in my brain, so I knew it was right.

    I think there’s a folk song there….

  57. russ99 says:

    Matt Irwin and Jeff Schultz are on waivers today. Irwin is interesting despite a bad game for Boston this year, he played well for McLellan in San Jose for a few years.

    Either of them can’t be worse than Ference and send Davidson down so he can play.

  58. oliveoilers says:

    SwedishPoster: One thing I always noted when watching the Sharks under Mclellan was that they put a lot of pucks on net, corsi gods, but didn’t seem overly efficient in scoring actual goals in relation to how often they outshot the opponent.

    Woodguy: Now that we have McLellan…..well we have McLellan, I wonder if we will see the “gaming corsi” comments?

    You beat me to it, WG!

  59. Pouzar says:

    Bag of Pucks: Possibly two games is not a definitive sample size.

    Yeah those multiple years of Eberle WOWY data are pretty useless too.

    The guy is a huge loss.

  60. G Money says:

    SwedishPoster,
    Woodguy,

    They were actually also scoring chance gods under McLellan.

    If you look at the last three years (total) for San Jose,
    – as expected, they were best in the league over those three years at generating Corsi For (60.2 CF60, third in the league at CF%)
    – but they were third best in the league at generating scoring chances (29.0 SCF60)
    – and they were third best in the league at generating high danger chances (12.2 HSCF60)

  61. stush18 says:

    Not sure if its just me, but gryba looks much more effective than fayne so far this year.

    Small Sample size, yada yada, but Gryba is a bigger and meaner version of fayne. Hes no Erik Karlsson, but hes actually very effective at moving the puck out of the zone after defending or breaking up an opportunity.

    Fayne + 2016 first for shattenkirk.

  62. sliderule says:

    Leave Leon in sunny California till he shows that he can score in the AHL and play defence against men.He was rocked a few times in games against Canucks and needs to adjust his play against big defenders.
    On the other hand Slepyshev has stayed on his feet and battled in corners .
    He hasn’t scored but neither has anyone else unless you count the own goal.

  63. russ99 says:

    Woodguy,

    Also take in account the system and the quality of the opposing defenses. We may have an easier time getting shooters in high scoring areas in Dallas.

  64. Pouzar says:

    stush18: Not sure if its just me, but gryba looks much more effective than fayne so far this year.

    I don’t think it’s just you cause I know it’s me as well. 🙂

    I’ve been pleasantly surprised with Gryba as a bottom pairing guy.
    Not so thrilled from what I see in Fayne.

  65. oliveoilers says:

    böök¡je,

    There’s a Thanksgiving present for you on the Thanksgiving thread.

  66. Stelio Kontos (Formerly Zangetsu-Formerly Thinker) says:

    Too early to say I told you so, but I want to remind that I was big on YakDavid.

    Eberle is a huge piece to this team, and is sorely missed. The way I have always seen it, is that you split Hall and McDavid since they can each hold a line. I also like forcing the other team to choose a line to match. That is why I personally would have nuge and hall on a line, as it forces the team to cover them, and frees up McDavid. If they still want to match connor, fine, but we will make them pay.

    For Now,
    Hall Nuge Purcell
    Pouliot McDavid Yak
    Korpikoski Lander Slepyshev

    Down the road I would like to see three pairs, and maybe a draisatl recall. I think it was the right move sending him down, as he is our first centre depth, and needs experience to jump in and play effectively down the middle.

    Pouliot Nuge Eberle
    Lander McDavid Yakupov
    Hall Draisaitl Slepyshev

    Maybe you want to switch lander and drai, but I prefer the defensive conscience to the hall-lander pair.

  67. admiralmark says:

    Frank the dog: Soft college kid that lacks gritensity and has too much eye shadow. That’s his problem!Outside of that have you watched him this season, or are you going on memory and last year’s impressions?He gets the puck out of the d-zone, spends most of his time in the o-zone, got right in a players face after a dirty hit on Klef, and is a constant scoring threat on the ice. I’ve also noticed a reduction in the Jultz factor.I’m a lot less worried about Jultz than I am about Teddy and Andrew. One is a liability and the other has better offensive options available.

    Lowetide,

    Yes i’ve watched every minute of every game this season. As well as the last 3-4 seasons. And I do admit he has improved since last season. I do think he’s a liability out there still. Makes a good pass followed by 2-3 bad ones. Gets beat through lack of effort on the back skate. Has a weak floater from the point. Drive/Desire not apparent. Can he be a useful NHL Dman? Maybe a 3rd pairing offensive role? But as a 1st or 2nd pairing player his partners are relied heavily to make up for his deficiencies.

    Again bottom line is I don’t see his mental make-up being suitable for playoff hockey. I do value opinions on here(most) . And I’m trying to see this quality top 4 D man many are proposing he is. I just see more bad then good. But he has looked some better so hopefully he proves me wrong.

  68. kinger_OIL says:

    – Woodguy (and others) says Yak should be on third line, to “shelter” him

    – Becasue offense can be on 3 lines

    – And Yak is better playing with Lander than an elite offense C

    – Best to put Purcell or Korpi on lines with best C’s that can carry them, and keep Yak down

    – Man has that spreading around the offence working so far

    – Drai wasn’t ready last year, let Sheppy post Drai-like NHL numbers while Drai develops

  69. Bag of Pucks says:

    Pouzar: Yeah those multiple years of Eberle WOWY data are pretty useless too.

    The guy is a huge loss.

    It is a loss having him out of the lineup. That doesn’t make him untradeable however.

    There’s easily 50 + players in the NHL that you could trade him for that would make the club better.

  70. Bag of Pucks says:

    Man there’s a lot of “I told you so” commentary on this board lately.

    Gives me a sense of what it must be like to follow Taylor Swift on Twitter.

  71. Woodguy says:

    G Money:
    SwedishPoster,
    Woodguy,

    They were actually also scoring chance gods under McLellan.

    If you look at the last three years (total) for San Jose,
    – as expected, they were best in the league over those three years at generating Corsi For (60.2 CF60, third in the league at CF%)
    – but they were third best in the league at generating scoring chances (29.0 SCF60)
    – and they were third best in the league at generating high danger chances (12.2 HSCF60)

    So if they were 14th in scoring with being 3rd in SCF and HSCF then did they “lack finish”?

  72. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    If what you wrote was ever interesting enough to catalog and then throw back at you later I would.

    Its not, so I don’t.

  73. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    – Becasue offense can be on 3 lines

    You know that 3 of the 4 teams to make the conference finals last year and both Stanley Cup finals teams last year ran 3 lines of offence right?

    Oh, not you don’t know that, or anything interesting or move the conversation forward ever.

  74. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks: It is a loss having him out of the lineup. That doesn’t make him untradeable however.

    True.

    Bag of Pucks: There’s easily 50 + players in the NHL that you could trade him for that would make the club better.

    Untrue.

  75. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    Also,

    I beat you to it and wrote this last night:

    https://lowetide.ca/2015/10/10/g2-2015-16-oilers-at-predators/comment-page-2/#comment-453705

    Re: Yak and McDavid.
    I was wrong.
    I’m probably wrong about DrySaddle too.
    I’m sorry.

    If you’re trying to “shame me”, it won’t work.

    Not because “I have no shame” (which I don’t, ha!), but I know full well that I’m just a fan having fun who likes to explore the data of the game to try to find nuggets of truth of patterns.

    You take what I write way more serious than I do.

  76. godot10 says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    Reposted from the end of the game thread:

    That reminded me a lot of the good Eakins’ teams. Play well, deserve better, sunk by terrible mistakes.

    Must of been when I blinked my eyes once…i.e. “good Eakins’ teams”.

    “good Eakins'” is an oxymoron.

  77. G Money says:

    Woodguy,

    Apparently!

    I blame the coach.

  78. G Money says:

    By the way, there is someone on OilersNation blaming the two losses on Talbot. Because he was “outplayed by the other goalie”.

    Lordy.

  79. SwedishPoster says:

    Woodguy: So if they were 14th in scoring with being 3rd in SCF and HSCF then did they “lack finish”?

    Or is HSCF not taking Into account the importance of getting the goalie to move laterally before the shot to truly make it a dangerous shot? Todays goalies are so hard to beat when they’re in position. I think putting pucks on net is a good thing but I think there’s also value in making the pass when the pass is there. Could be that McLellans offensive scheme could use some tweaking to be truly optimized.

  80. godot10 says:

    Bag of Pucks: Possibly two games is not a definitive sample size.

    It is NOT a two game sample size. It is a 5 year sample size. Eberle has led the Oilers in scoring 3 of his five seasons, and was 2nd and 3rd in the other two.

  81. oliveoilers says:

    G Money:
    By the way, there is someone on OilersNation blaming the two losses on Talbot.Because he was “outplayed by the other goalie”.

    Lordy.

    Ahh, bless.

  82. OilClog says:

    think the narrative so far is..

    Whatever Center is on the ice with Yak, looks good.

    Staple McJesus and Yak together for the next few weeks at the minimum. McSaviour is not going to be put in any position much more difficult then what he’s faced the last two games, two very legit squads.

    Hall and Nuge looked like world beaters back together, Purcell wasn’t bad, he had a good pass, but can’t help to wonder what a guy with either faster feet or alil more grind would of created… Nuge and Hall were beautiful at cutting off the puck before it got out the zone.. Purcell.. Not so much.

    Sekera made a mistake trying to make something happen, his pylon partner Fayne was square dancing and stick tapping the whole way back.. That goal is on Fayne as much as anyone else.. Cut the pass off! He says he thrives off that challenge, yet haven’t seen any glimpses of this cycle breaking shut down defender.

    do everything possible to move Fayne and Purcell.

    For the love of God stick Rhino back with Gryba. B-bop and Rocksteady.

  83. G Money says:

    SwedishPoster: Or is HSCF not taking Into account the importance of getting the goalie to move laterally before the shot to truly make it a dangerous shot?

    Yes, this is possible. The HSCF calculations take into account shot location, and also try to assess whether a shot was a rebound or rush shot (which makes them more dangerous).

    They have (at least) two significant weaknesses:

    – They don’t account for shot type. I have no idea why – the data is easily available, and war on ice even has it in their data feeds. I know this because that’s what I’m using for my danger calculations. A 20ft slapshot is more dangerous than a 15 ft backhand, but WOI doesn’t discriminate between those two.

    – HSCF does not (in fact, cannot – the data for that isn’t in the data collected by the NHL) account for those lateral passes that force the goalie to change angles, which can turn an innocuous shot into a dangerous one. Ryan Stimson’s passing project is trying to capture this data, but of course it is a huge laborious effort (one of those crowdsourced approaches I was talking about last night).

    That said, if WOI were to include shot types in their calculations, I think that would capture at least part of that. A big part of what passing does is set people up to take dangerous shots from dangerous locations (e.g. a slapper from the low circle).

  84. SwedishPoster says:

    oliveoilers:
    You beat me to it, WG!

    Where did I mention gaming corsi?

  85. flyfish1168 says:

    JMHO. After watching a few different games yesterday. I see how other teams defense engage themselves in the offensive zone. Our dmen don’t scare any teams. I believe that is why our forwards get very little time and space to execute or setup in the offensive zone. We really need a few very good 2 way dmen or better option than Justin as a offensive threat. Justin doesn’t scare any teams

  86. oliveoilers says:

    SwedishPoster: Where did I mention gaming corsi?

    One thing I always noted when watching the Sharks under Mclellan was that they put a lot of pucks on net, corsi gods, but didn’t seem overly efficient in scoring actual goals in relation to how often they outshot the opponent.

    This can be construed as gaming corsi.

    I admit you didn’t actually call it such.

    The gist of your post seems to be that McLellan coaches pucks on net or the SJ had terrible finishers.

    SJ does not have terrible finishers.

  87. Ryan says:

    SwedishPoster,

    i can already see a lot of Mclellan’s influence in the Oilers style of play.

    Mclellan loves shots from the point especially with traffic in front and working the cycle…

    My only concern with Mclellan’s style of coaching is the Oilers roster itself.

    We don’t have a single dman that can rifle the puck on net much less one who can reliably get shots thru to the net.

    Also, without jumbo Joe working the cycle in the corners and sending Marleau some insane pass for an easy goal, we don’t seem to generate much on the cycle.

  88. SwedishPoster says:

    G Money: Yes, this is possible.The HSCF calculations take into account shot location, and also try to assess whether a shot was a rebound or rush shot (which makes them more dangerous).

    They have (at least) two significant weaknesses:

    – They don’t account for shot type.I have no idea why – the data is easily available, and war on ice even has it in their data feeds.I know this because that’s what I’m using for my danger calculations.A 20ft slapshot is more dangerous than a 15 ft backhand, but WOI doesn’t discriminate between those two.

    – HSCF does not (in fact, cannot – the data for that isn’t in the data collected by the NHL) account for those lateral passes that force the goalie to change angles, which can turn an innocuous shot into a dangerous one.Ryan Stimson’s passing project is trying to capture this data, but of course it is a huge laborious effort (one of those crowdsourced approaches I was talking about last night).

    That said, if WOI were to include shot types in their calculations, I think that would capture at least part of that.A big part of what passing does is set people up to take dangerous shots from dangerous locations (e.g. a slapper from the low circle).

    I’d add that they don’t put into account whether the shooter is pressured or uncontested, an uncontested shooter has a far better chance to score than a pressured one, since he can among other things change the angle on the goalie by himself.

  89. Pouzar says:

    Bag of Pucks: It is a loss having him out of the lineup. That doesn’t make him untradeable however.

    There’s easily 50 + players in the NHL that you could trade him for that would make the club better.

    More hyperbole backed up by a lot of nothing.

  90. OilClog says:

    Ryan:
    SwedishPoster,

    i can already see a lot of Mclellan’s influence in the Oilers style of play.

    Mclellan loves shots from the point especially with traffic in front and working the cycle…

    My only concern with Mclellan’s style of coaching is the Oilers roster itself.

    We don’t have a single dman that can rifle the puck on net much less one who can reliably get shots thru to the net.

    Also, without jumbo Joe working the cycle in the corners and sending Marleau some insane pass for an easy goal, wedon’t seem to generate much on the cycle.

    don’t know about that, seen more cycle the last two games then the last few years under the cycle King.

  91. böök¡je says:

    Bag of Pucks: It is a loss having him out of the lineup. That doesn’t make him untradeable however.

    There’s easily 50 + players in the NHL that you could trade him for that would make the club better.

    Maybe even a billion players!

  92. SwedishPoster says:

    oliveoilers,

    I guess, but gaming corsi is pretty derogatory, I never meant it like that. I just see it as a different tactical approach. I think it’s a good way to start actually but I think you can improve on it with small tweaks once you get the shooting mentality and going Hard to the net in place.

  93. RMGS says:

    SwedishPoster:
    One thing I always noted when watching the Sharks under Mclellan was that they put a lot of pucks on net, corsi gods, but didn’t seem overly efficient in scoring actual goals in relation to how often they outshot the opponent. I don’t have stats to back it up, on my phone so the digging will have to wait, but just something I’ve noticed. A lot of nights where the opposing goalie made loads of saves. Scrivens big night is one example. Could be that it catches your attention when it happens.

    McLellan’s Sharks, like most good hockey teams, don’t just put a lot of shots on net, they also drive the net and put traffic in front.

    But, I guess the problem could be the 5th coach in 5 years, even if he’s someone with McLellan’s record and credentials.

  94. PerryK says:

    G Money,

    “The issue at hand now is whether or not you think the two games so far are indicative of how TMc’s power play will look the rest of the season.
    One positive note is that Taylor Hall, not having to adapt to and to some extent babysit two rookies, was back to his beastly self, taking 9 shot attempts, creating multiple dangerous chances, and setting up several more.”

    The first unit looks good and the second unit is a tire fire. In order to avoid receiving 1 minute PPs, we have to split the units better. The second unit needs a puck mover / distributor.

    Re: Taylor, I thought he was trying too hard to defer to McDavid. Resulting in both guys being tentative. At least for a little while, it would be better if he was trying to push the river on his own line.

  95. oliveoilers says:

    SwedishPoster:
    oliveoilers,

    I guess, but gaming corsi is pretty derogatory, I never meant it like that. I just see it as a different tactical approach. I think it’s a good way to start actually but I think you can improve on it with small tweaks once you get the shooting mentality and going Hard to the net in place.

    I think there may be a fine line. With Eb’s comments about shooting for stats under DE and a coach saying “it can’t help to take a shot.”, TMac just wants to score goals.

    My two cents are that he’s trying to fix the defense first then work on the offense, though plans can change.

  96. frjohnk says:

    G Money: Yes, this is possible.The HSCF calculations take into account shot location, and also try to assess whether a shot was a rebound or rush shot (which makes them more dangerous).

    They have (at least) two significant weaknesses:

    – They don’t account for shot type.I have no idea why – the data is easily available, and war on ice even has it in their data feeds.I know this because that’s what I’m using for my danger calculations.A 20ft slapshot is more dangerous than a 15 ft backhand, but WOI doesn’t discriminate between those two.

    – HSCF does not (in fact, cannot – the data for that isn’t in the data collected by the NHL) account for those lateral passes that force the goalie to change angles, which can turn an innocuous shot into a dangerous one.Ryan Stimson’s passing project is trying to capture this data, but of course it is a huge laborious effort (one of those crowdsourced approaches I was talking about last night).

    That said, if WOI were to include shot types in their calculations, I think that would capture at least part of that.A big part of what passing does is set people up to take dangerous shots from dangerous locations (e.g. a slapper from the low circle).

    I would love to see shot types in their calculations. But for now, we have shot location and it is a step in the right direction.

    I’ll be tracking the data for high danger shots for and will compare to last year.

    So far this year. These are shots for
    Game 1. 5 high danger shots, 7 medium danger, 13 perimeter
    Game 2. 6 high danger shots. 8 medium danger, 17 perimeter.

    Last year. Shots for
    Game 1. 8 high danger shots, 9 medium danger, 22 perimeter
    Game 2. 11 high danger shots, 9 medium danger, 9 perimeter

    Shots against
    Game 1. 7 high danger shots, 10 medium danger, 13 perimeter
    Game 1. 9 high danger shots, 5 medium danger,12 perimeter

    Last year. Shots against
    Game 1. 10 high danger shots, 7 medium danger, 9 perimeter
    Game 2. 15 high danger shots, 15 medium danger, 13 perimeter

    We played Calgary, then the Canucks last year.
    This year, we have had to face the Blues, then the Predators. I would say the competition this year has been tougher through the first 2 games compared to last year.

    Looking at these numbers, defensively, this team is better, and of course the goaltending is better this year.

    Offensively, not as good this year. But Im not too worried about this right now. It will come around.

  97. russ99 says:

    Schultz on the power play is dangerous moving the puck, and not dangerous being static at the point

    Schultz can be a weapon on the PP but we really should look at putting a D with a quality slapshot with him and have Schultz play as the extra forward.

    IMO the only thing Purcell brings on the power play is in a puck battle, and cycling the wall is a waste with the talent on the ice. Put him on the second unit crashing the net and change the first unit to umbrella with quick passing and puck movement and we’ll get more scoring chances.

  98. John Chambers says:

    frjohnk,

    So you’re saying our PDO will regress to the meat?

  99. frjohnk says:

    oliveoilers: My two cents are that he’s trying to fix the defense first then work on the offense

    Exactly.
    This team was a huge tire fire defensively last year with very much more worser goaltending ( sorry, had to use incorrect grammar to emphasize how pathetic Oiler goaltending was last year).

    Step 1. Fix the goaltending. This was done in the summer by getting Talbot.

    Step 2. Fix the defense. A work in progress. But there is PROGRESS. Just look at Schultz. He is better by eye and by math. Last year, by game 2, the defense had given up 25 high danger shots, this year, they have given up 16 high danger shots against better competition.

    Step 3. Be a better offensive team. TBA. But its coming boys.

  100. Lowetide says:

    John Chambers:
    frjohnk,

    So you’re saying our PDO will regress to the meat?

    We’re about five hours away, getting grumpy.

  101. frjohnk says:

    John Chambers:
    frjohnk,

    So you’re saying our PDO will regress to the meat?

    Who is PDO, is he our version of OEL, but from Finland?

  102. Bag of Pucks says:

    Pouzar: More hyperbole backed up by a lot of nothing.

    Notice how Ebs isn’t on this list?

    http://fw.to/iLD7Evg

  103. böök¡je says:

    G Money:
    By the way, there is someone on OilersNation blaming the two losses on Talbot.Because he was “outplayed by the other goalie”.

    Lordy.

    It’s not totally unreasonable. I just checked the scoresheet and Talbot didn’t have a single shot on the opposition’s net. You can’t score goals if you don’t shoot!

  104. John Chambers says:

    russ99,

    Agreed we need a shooter on the pp. I nominate the Tatar.

  105. Bag of Pucks says:

    godot10: It is NOT a two game sample size.It is a 5 year sample size.Eberle has led the Oilers in scoring 3 of his five seasons, and was 2nd and 3rd in the other two.

    You’re taking my comment out of context. GCW specifically said he based his conclusion on watching two games.

  106. knighttown says:

    Hadn’t realized Taylor Hall had 9 shots on goal last night. That’s…a lot. Against Weber and Josi.

    A good sign right there.

  107. stevezie says:

    Woodguy,

    This sound like a great idea for a study. Sadly encouragement is all i have to offer, but from the bottom of my heart: Go for it

  108. jm363561 says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    I’m a big believer that timing is a massive factor for success in life, and it appears that maybe for the first time in his Oiler career, Nail could benefit from fortuitous timing.

    The first players to get the push in front of him (Slep & Hall) failed to find chemistry with the wunderkind. If Eberle were in the lineup, he likely would be getting the next push, but he’s not.

    Thus, Nail meets that fateful moment where preparation meets opportunity.

    One of the core dysfunctions of this team imo has been the failure of the ‘cool kids’ to welcome the talented oddball in their mix and find a way to mesh their talents.

    What does Nail need to succeed?

    1) A Centre willing to take the time to communicate with him, with the patience to find that sympatico
    2) A Centre with the speed and defensive coverage skills to cover for Nail’s positional errors
    3) A simple mission: Forecheck hard, get to open ice in a strong position to shoot, fight through traffic for rebounds, backcheck like the hounds of hell are on your heels

    Connor checks the first two boxes. Let’s hope Nail’s ready to check the third.

    Nail as sniper vs Nail as bust, it’s a critical factor in this rebuild.

    Eggs / bacon; Gretzky / Kurri; McD / Yak? Give it a shot (no pun intended).

  109. Doug McLachlan says:

    Ok, loved how Yak and McDavid seemed to click last night. Hope that keeps up for a bit. Thought Hall enjoyed time with Nuge as well.

    One thing I have noticed is how MacT’s emphasis on the forwards hanging a little deeper in the defensive zone has make the chaos in the d-zone more manageable. The short outlet pass seems to be there. The pressure doesn’t build like it seemed to last season.

    Not sure if that is limiting to offensive side of the equation but nice to see.

    Oh, Talbot. So nice to see calm between the pipes. Results will come.

  110. 719 says:

    böök¡je:
    One issue I have always had with Ference is his personal responsibility.Last night after the game he blamed the Zamboni door for the ‘bad bounce’ that led to the goal against.I’m not sure I have ever heard him be self critical.

    This is a common technique used by elite athletes. You blame external things rather than yourself. This helps to maintain condience, as a loss of confidence is a killer for an athlete.

  111. Bag of Pucks says:

    jm363561: Eggs / bacon; Gretzky / Kurri; McD / Yak? Give it a shot (no pun intended).

    I don’t know that Yak is accurate enough that he’ll ever compare favourably to Kurri, who was an absolutely sublime two way player remember (crime he never won the Selke). But Yak could become a productive scorer with McDavid through sheer volume of shots.

    It’s kind of like the American approach to auto performance. We’ll just throw sheer horsepower at the problem, as opposed to the European approach of superior engineering and power to weight ratio.

    It’s not the most efficient solution, but who doesn’t like the sound of a hemi at full throttle?

  112. jm363561 says:

    Woodguy:
    The offense, on the other hand, is somewhat concerning. It had an Eakins flair to it, lots of possession without a lot of great chances.

    Oiler fans better be ready for this.

    Last year they called it “gaming corsi” because their disdain for Eakins and their lack of knowlege on how some coaches’ systems work.

    Note: I am not saying you were a “gaming corsi” person, your comments just reminded me it.

    Eakins was trying to emulate McLellan’s team in the offensive zone with tons of shots and net pressure.

    Getting this team to actually create the net pressure was an issue and McLellan is dealing with that now.

    Now that we have McLellan…..well we have McLellan, I wonder if we will see the “gaming corsi” comments?

    Consider this:

    Two seasons of data – 13/14-14/15 (all data 5v5 andcourtesy of stats.hockeyanalsis)

    CorsiFor/60 – 60.8 – 1st in the NHL – Sharks
    ShotsFor/60 – 31.1 – 4th in NHL – Sharks
    GoalsFor/60 – 2.26 – 14th in NHL – Sharks

    Lots of shot attempts, lots of shots, average in goals.

    Is that gaming corsi or just a strategy to score?

    Is it the right strategy for EDM?

    Here’s something interesting I stumbled upon when looking at these numbers:

    Goals/60 / Corsi/60which is your goal conversion rates from corsi events (same data, last 2 years 5v5)

    Colorado0.0488
    Anaheim0.0484
    Tampa Bay0.0458
    St. Louis0.0444
    Columbus0.0441
    Minnesota0.0438
    Nashville0.0434
    Dallas0.0434
    Calgary0.0430
    NY Rangers0.0428
    Pittsburgh0.0428
    Toronto0.0427
    Chicago0.0420
    Detroit0.0416
    Boston0.0414
    Winnipeg0.0413
    Ottawa0.0409
    Florida0.0402
    Washington0.0401
    NY Islanders0.0401
    Vancouver0.0400
    Montreal0.0398
    Philadelphia0.0393
    Edmonton0.0387
    New Jersey0.0383
    San Jose0.0372
    Los Angeles0.0362
    Buffalo0.0359
    Carolina0.0339
    Arizona0.0337

    Huh.SJS actually had a worse conversion rate than Edmonton.

    Both were near the bottom of the league.

    Its interesting that the top of chart is full of teams that are usually sited as “out performing their corsi”, except STL, who are a good corsi team AND have a high conversion rate.

    I’m going to dig into this deeper.I’m going to look at these rates and see if we can find anything to think about when comparing them to Scoring Chance rates and High Danger Scoring Chance rates.

    Being an accountant I know much more about numbers than hockey. Generally I skip past any post that fills more than a quarter of the screen. However, it seems to me you are on to something here. I have no idea what it is but I look forward to you finding out.

  113. kinger_OIL says:

    Woodguy,

    – Bye guys. Woodie I get it, only you write good stuff, I am useless, because I dissent, and make valid, non-conforming comments. But only yours are worthy.

  114. Frank the dog says:

    admiralmark: Lowetide,

    Yes i’ve watched every minute of every game this season. As well as the last 3-4 seasons. And I do admit he has improved since last season. I do think he’s a liability out there still. Makes a good pass followed by 2-3 bad ones. Gets beat through lack of effort on the back skate. Has a weak floater from the point. Drive/Desire not apparent. Can he be a useful NHL Dman? Maybe a 3rd pairing offensive role? But as a 1st or 2nd pairing player his partners are relied heavily to make up for his deficiencies.

    Again bottom line is I don’t see his mental make-up being suitable for playoff hockey. I do value opinions on here(most) . And I’m trying to see this quality top 4 D man many are proposing he is. I just see more bad then good. But he has looked some better so hopefully he proves me wrong.

    Hi Admiral,
    I agree with you that Shultz was not impressive at all on previous years, but have to cut him slack for playing under an inept coach that demoralized his assets.
    His style of play, after all, did produce the word “Jultzing” just as the coach’s style of “coaching” led to the apt nickname of “dementor”.
    I appear to have seen a different Schultz on the ice this pre-season and his stats seem to match up with my somewhat flawed observations.
    I too don’t know how Schultz will perform in the playoffs. Playoffs bring out the best and worst in players, just as combat does in troops. Unfortunately we will probably need to get to at less the first round to find that out, alternately there will be some tough games that bring that out beforehand.
    In prior years I would have tagged him as a lollygagging coward who could score goals. This year Im wondering if it was his poor coaching.

  115. Oddspell says:

    Caramel Obvious:
    Reposted from the end of the game thread:

    That reminded me a lot of the good Eakins’ teams. Play well, deserve better, sunk by terrible mistakes.

    This is exactly what I’ve been thinking. The first two games this season remind me of the first twenty or so games last season to a T. Win the corsi battle, generate minimal offence. At least this time there hasn’t been really obvious player regression but it’s early days.

    Here’s hoping our finishers start to figure things out.

  116. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks: Notice how Ebs isn’t on this list?

    http://fw.to/iLD7Evg

    You’re saying that Eberle can be traded for any of these players, even the ones that play for the Oilers (McDavid and Hall)?

    Do we have to compelt anybody?

  117. maudite says:

    A mcyak attack that gels would be mazzive

  118. Bag of Pucks says:

    oliveoilers: You’re saying that Eberle can be traded for any of these players, even the ones that play for the Oilers (McDavid and Hall)?

    Do we have to compelt anybody?

    Are you 12 years old?

  119. Pouzar says:

    Bag of Pucks: Are you 12 years old?

    3 years of WOWY
    3 years of G/60 and A/60 as measure against his NHL peers.

    Whatchoo got BoP???
    Board battles and backchecking?

    Oh yeah….TSN rankings!!!!!!!

  120. Lowetide says:

    In case all of those arguing and quitting my blog don’t return, thanks so much for visiting when you did! Lordy people, it’s a holiday! Relax! Jordan Eberle is a good player AND there may be a time when the Oilers have to trade someone making a lot of money.

    We’re not solving this today. Enjoy your day! Please!

  121. Woodguy says:

    SwedishPoster: Or is HSCF not taking Into account the importance of getting the goalie to move laterally before the shot to truly make it a dangerous shot? Todays goalies are so hard to beat when they’re in position. I think putting pucks on net is a good thing but I think there’s also value in making the pass when the pass is there. Could be that McLellans offensive scheme could use some tweaking to be truly optimized.

    Puck and player movement data is going to revolutionize how we view goalies and goals.

  122. admiralmark says:

    Frank the dog: Hi Admiral,I agree with you that Shultz was not impressive at all on previous years, but have to cut him slack for playing under an inept coach that demoralized his assets.His style of play, after all, did produce the word “Jultzing” just as the coach’s style of “coaching” led to the apt nickname of “dementor”.I appear to have seen a different Schultz on the ice this pre-season and his stats seem to match up with my somewhat flawed observations.I too don’t know how Schultz will perform in the playoffs. Playoffs bring out the best and worst in players, just as combat does in troops. Unfortunately we will probably need to get to at less the first round to find that out, alternately there will be some tough games that bring that out beforehand.In prior years I would have tagged him as a lollygagging coward who could score goals. This year Im wondering if it was his poor coaching.

    Undoubtedly he was rushed and over used. I think he still is. I’m leaving the door open for him to surprise me. There are a plethora of players in history that entered the NHL with all the percieved tools necessary to excel or at least thrive and were out of the league in short order. As a so called offensive D man.. he can pass decently.. but his shot slap or wrist is not keeping any goalie awake at night. Schultz keeps getting sorties far beyond what is normal considering his performances. No matter how much i watch him play I dont see the top 4 D there. I see a player that can survive on a team with weak D and no better options for the role that’s being carried by his partners. But most the time even they cant make him look good.

  123. böök¡je says:

    Lowetide:
    In case all of those arguing and quitting my blog don’t return, thanks so much for visiting when you did! Lordy people, it’s a holiday! Relax! Jordan Eberle is a good player AND there may be a time when the Oilers have to trade someone making a lot of money.

    We’re not solving this today. Enjoy your day! Please!

    Wait, what, people are quitting this blog? Is that possible??

  124. Pouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    In case all of those arguing and quitting my blog don’t return, thanks so much for visiting when you did! Lordy people, it’s a holiday! Relax! Jordan Eberle is a good player AND there may be a time when the Oilers have to trade someone making a lot of money.

    We’re not solving this today. Enjoy your day! Please!

    Sorry. I thought calling out BS with facts was something we did here.

    But I will go away now.

    Sheesh.

  125. Lowetide says:

    Pouzar: Sorry. I thought calling out BS with facts was something we did here.

    But I will go away now.

    Sheesh.

    Good grief.

  126. flyfish1168 says:

    knighttown:
    Hadn’t realized Taylor Hall had 9 shots on goal last night. That’s…a lot. Against Weber and Josi.

    A good sign right there.

    Unfortunately most of his shots were without anyone driving to the net.

  127. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL:
    Woodguy,

    – Bye guys.Woodie I get it, only you write good stuff, I am useless, because I dissent, and make valid, non-conforming comments.But only yours are worthy.

    Finally, you write something good.

  128. flyfish1168 says:

    admiralmark: Undoubtedly he was rushed and over used. I think he still is. I’m leaving the door open for him to surprise me. There are a plethora of players in history that entered the NHL with all the percieved tools necessary to excel or at least thrive and were out of the league in short order. As a so called offensive D man.. he can pass decently.. but his shot slap or wrist is not keeping any goalie awake at night. Schultz keeps getting sorties far beyond what is normal considering his performances. No matter how much i watch him play I dont see the top 4 D there. I see a player that can survive on a team with weak D and no better options for the role that’s being carried by his partners. But most the time even they cant make him look good.

    Justin needs to watch some Karlsson video’s or maybe better yet all of our dmen

  129. Bag of Pucks says:

    On a blog that values logic and tries to remove personal bias from the equation, I don’t think it’s a controversial statement to say that as an abstract exercise there are 50 or more NHL players you could trade Jordan Eberle for that would improve the current roster. In fact it’s exceedingly obvious if you’re not confounded by bias.

    C is a more valuable position than W in this league. With that as a starting point, you can easily identify 20 #1Cs, 20 #1 Ds and 10 #1Gs you would trade Eberle for and that’s not even touching the Ws yet. So yeah, obvious.

    But the Eberle fanboy culture knows no reason. Postulating a trade scenario involving him raises the same mentality one normally associates with the ‘burn the witch’ scene in the Life of Brian. Laughable.

    To help with the accord requested by our good and always genial host, I log off for the day.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy the day and don’t forget to offer up a word of thanks for #97. It has been a very good year for Oiler fans.

  130. Walter Gretzkys Neighbour says:

    Ok, disclaimer here – this isn’t going to be anything meaningful in the way of hockey analysis. But, I have been doing soul searching last night and this morning (I’m in Ontario in case the handle didn’t suggest that). I’m not much of a regular poster here – I chime in now and then. But I am very interested in this site and the views and opinions of those of you who are regular and those of you who do so much analysis and research. Hats off to you guys. You make this site a treat and of course LT – who puts such heart into this, you are a gem. It’s really a credit to the depth of emotion we all feel about hockey and the Oilers specifically when we see the passion of everyone here.

    My soul searching has to do with this very fundamental issue. For so many years I have expended energy, anxiety, emotion and thought on this team. I grew up in Edmonton, watched this franchise in the WHA (went to the first ever game at “Northlands”), watched and agonized as they lost the last Avco Cup, celebrated as they made the jump to the NHL and followed with joyful anticipation through the great years and the Cup wins and the domination of teams like Calgary and Vancouver etc.

    I’ve never been able to loosen the hold the Oilers have on my heart – despite the fact that I have essentially been an Ontario resident since 1982. But I am feeling today after the years of losing and the last two games – I’m not sure I can dedicate my self to this anymore. I am not writing this to be convinced or anything. I’m writing this because this is the first place I have ever been able to really SAY stuff like this about the Oilers – you know out loud! I feel like this is a group of people who understand the pleasure and the pain of being an Oiler fan.

    But here are my thoughts early in this season. Fundamentally there is something WRONG with the Oiler franchise. I watched the game last night (well most of it anyway) and then I watched a good deal of the Vancouver Calgary game. There’s literally no comparison between these 3 teams. Two of them are very similar and one of the look totally out of place.Calgary’s young small players can DOMINATE when they turn it up. No Oilers can seem to match that level of intensity and performance.

    There was energy, action, heart, emotion, excitement in the Calgary Vancouver game. Oilers? And honestly, I’m REALLY trying to be objective – I just don’t see it. Goaltending with Talbot – WAY better. After that nothing. This is a team that has Hall, RNH, Yakupov, McDavid – all first overall picks. The defence corp is appalling bad, just mindnumpingly bad really – even with an admirable and welcome uptick in the play of Justin Schultz. But as a team, it seems like they have no energy or intensity at all.

    What I’m trying to get at is the Oilers – no matter who is on the ice – always look the exact same. Weak, soft ineffective, confused, out of position, flatfooted, on the receiving end of checks never dealing them out, often falling, scrambling, whiffing on passes, missing the net and on and on.Where are we with coaches now? Five in the lat 6 years?

    They are a terrible looking team. No matter what some advances stats may say specifically about last night’s game. They drive no play, they dominate no area of the ice, they create no spark, excitement or really anything. Hell even Nick Kypreos is starting to lighten up on them.

    My son says I’m not really objective and I suspect that maybe true. But I am truly worn out from hoping this team will turn it around and gel and show something. I said I think there is something wrong with the organization. I thought with Chiarelli and McLellan , new assistant coaches, cleaning out the scouts etc would change this but I am really concerned that they won’t matter either.

    So what I have decided is this, as someone said in the game thread yesterday – I am not going to watch any further Oiler games until such time as there is a significant change either on the roster to address the issues or in the manor in which the current team plays. They have zero identity, zero chemistry and put out a substandard product.

    I love reading ideas and thoughts of you all here and I’ll stay reading, maybe chiming in now and then. I just can’t stand watching the continual frustrations, failure and futility.

    I really think Lowe, McTavish and Howson should just be summarily fired – maybe that will start the process. I don’t know.

    I will conclude this aimless post by saying thanks in advance to any of you who may read this and who understand the frustration. This has been such a great franchise in the long ago past – I’d like to see it come back to that some day. Thanks for listening to me vent.

  131. spoiler says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    On a blog that values logic and tries to remove personal bias from the equation, I don’t think it’s a controversial statement to say that as an abstract exercise there are 50 or more NHL players you could trade Jordan Eberle for that would improve the current roster. In fact it’s exceedingly obvious if you’re not confounded by bias.

    C is a more valuable position than W in this league. With that as a starting point, you can easily identify 20 #1Cs, 20 #1 Ds and 10 #1Gs you would trade Eberle for and that’s not even touching the Ws yet. So yeah, obvious.

    But the Eberle fanboy culture knows no reason. Postulating a trade scenario involving him raises the same mentality one normally associates with the ‘burn the witch’ scene in the Life of Brian. Laughable.

    To help with the accord requested by our good and always genial host, I log off for the day.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy the day and don’t forget to offer up a word of thanks for #97. It has been a very good year for Oiler fans.

    That was Holy Grail not Life of Brian.

  132. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    In case all of those arguing and quitting my blog don’t return, thanks so much for visiting when you did! Lordy people, it’s a holiday! Relax! Jordan Eberle is a good player AND there may be a time when the Oilers have to trade someone making a lot of money.

    We’re not solving this today. Enjoy your day! Please!

    I come by it honestly, it must be in my DNA.

    My 6 year old and I are playing Chutes and Ladders and she aggressively cheers every time I hit a chute.

    Also,

    I get trolled on twitter, I get trolled here and I get trolled by my daughter.

    I guess I make a big target.

  133. leadfarmer says:

    Someone said something once that disagreed with something I said so I’m quitting the Internet.

    Climbs back under rock.

  134. böök¡je says:

    Lowetide: Good grief.

    THAT’s IT – I can take the stats, debates, diatribes, monologues, frustrated rants, statistical ramblings that make nerds cry, and the rest, but I will not stand for people quoting CHARLIE BROWN.

    Screw all of you people! I’m OUTTA HERE. Enjoy Hell you bastards!!!!

    Edit- Also, Happy Thanksgiving.

  135. böök¡je says:

    I think the blog has reached ‘family argument’ status 🙂

  136. hunter1909 says:

    Frank the dog: I too don’t know how Schultz will perform in the playoffs.

    I don’t know how to operate a flying saucer.

  137. Bag of Pucks says:

    spoiler: That was Holy Grail not Life of Brian.

    Thanks for the correction. Made me login again ya bastid ; )

  138. böök¡je says:

    Maybe we should stick to safe topics for a while like politics or religion

  139. JDï™ says:

    leadfarmer: so I’m quitting the Internet.

    Fine. I can’t stand those ‘capitalize the word internet’ types anyway!

    😉

  140. godot10 says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    On a blog that values logic and tries to remove personal bias from the equation, I don’t think it’s a controversial statement to say that as an abstract exercise there are 50 or more NHL players you could trade Jordan Eberle for that would improve the current roster. In fact it’s exceedingly obvious if you’re not confounded by bias.

    C is a more valuable position than W in this league. With that as a starting point, you can easily identify 20 #1Cs, 20 #1 Ds and 10 #1Gs you would trade Eberle for and that’s not even touching the Ws yet. So yeah, obvious.

    But the Eberle fanboy culture knows no reason. Postulating a trade scenario involving him raises the same mentality one normally associates with the ‘burn the witch’ scene in the Life of Brian. Laughable.

    To help with the accord requested by our good and always genial host, I log off for the day.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy the day and don’t forget to offer up a word of thanks for #97. It has been a very good year for Oiler fans.

    It is a hard salary cap league. There are not 50 better value for money contracts (with duration) in the NHL than Eberle’s. There may be 50 better players in the NHL than Eberle, but that is somewhat of an irrelevant point.

    Because
    1) regardless of contract, those teams most likely won’t trade one of those players for Eberle, because they’ve managed their cap to slot those players
    2) The Oilers are really unlikely to get better value for money in a trade for Eberle.

    i.e. Once on has a good player, tied up in a reasonable contract, it is more probable that one will lose the trade if one trades that player.

    Another GM would probably have to make a mistake for the Oilers to win an Eberle trade.

    But an Eberle trade might happen if the OIlers determine they cannot afford to re-sign him. That decision will be made two or three seasons from now, probably once the dollar figure McDavid’s next contract is known.

  141. flyfish1168 says:

    Walter Gretzkys Neighbour,

    Wow you and i must be about the same age. i feel the same as you. But I like this new coaching staff and I believe in them. This whole group of young men have been mishandled and incorrectly coached. Rome wasn’t built in a day so we need to be patient. Our new G.M. has his work cut out from the mishandling of contracts handed out. Unfortunately NHL contracts are guaranteed. I believe the new NHL requires very mobile players and the defense has to be 200 feet mobile with offensive ability. I believe each 10 game segment will be better than the previous segment. Here’s hope 🙂

  142. Ryan says:

    böök¡je:
    Maybe we should stick to safe topics for a while like politics or religion

    You always seem to shine using humor to make peace when there’s internal discord here.

  143. admiralmark says:

    Walter Gretzkys Neighbour,

    I feel your pain bud. I think we are seeing just how critical D is to driving the Offence. Consider that Nurse and Reinhart will likely be top 4 D by next year. And hopefully a legit #1 is picked up between now and then. Until then i’d just say, it’s only 2 games in(tough opponents at that) lets give Tmac 20-30 games to instill his gameplan. And try to enjoy the flashes of brilliance this team will put out.

    Most importantly I don’t think you want to miss McDavid adapt and grow into the player he can be. As tough as it is i’d watch the team after a 30 game losing streak as long as he’s on the ice.

  144. oliveoilers says:

    I know what will bring us back together!

    Who’s up for Monopoly?

    If not, we could just start trashing the Dys and Phlegms.

  145. RexLibris says:

    Lowetide: Good grief.

    We’re quoting You Know Who now?

    Man, I go away for a day and the band breaks up!

  146. RexLibris says:

    böök¡je:
    Maybe we should stick to safe topics for a while like politics or religion

    Agreed. While we’re at it, let’s talk about each other’s mother. That’ll calm things down.

  147. flyfish1168 says:

    RexLibris: We’re quoting You Know Who now?

    I say Charlie Brown

  148. godot10 says:

    böök¡je:
    Maybe we should stick to safe topics for a while like politics or religion

    Why is Katz holding an NDP rally at Rexall Thursday night? They are asking everyone to wear orange. When did he become a socialist! -).-)

    The retro uni’s are clearly #panderingtotheNDP

  149. RexLibris says:

    On the topic of this season mirroring last season’s beginning – I’m not seeing it.

    The results, I suppose so.

    But the details are what matters.

    Goaltending has been phenomenal and in a very good way that suggests reasonable sustainability, in so far as one can predict anything wrt goaltending, The defense and forwards appear to be operating more uniformly and the breakout looks much better than it did last year.

    The shooting data, or what little I’ve seen thus far, looks like it is shots from fair to good scoring areas and the defenders have shown an improved ability not only from last year but even from their own performances in training camp.

    We lack only the offense that results from most or all of the above as well as an improved powerplay.

    So let’s just let the games progress and look for the team to show that it now knows a thing or two about playing hockey.

  150. Woodguy says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Since 11/12 Eberle is 18th in total points scored

    That’s pretty good.

    Minimum 160 games played.

    For those who don’t like links:

    1 Claude Giroux 301
    2 Evgeni Malkin 284
    3 Alex Ovechkin 283
    4 Sidney Crosby 281
    5 John Tavares 281
    6 Phil Kessel 276
    7 Steven Stamkos 267
    8 Jamie Benn 264
    9 Ryan Getzlaf 263
    10 Tyler Seguin 261
    11 Patrick Kane 260
    12 Joe Thornton 260
    13 Martin St. Louis 255
    14 Anze Kopitar 252
    15 Henrik Sedin 250
    16 Nicklas Backstrom 249
    17 Joe Pavelski 244
    18 Jordan Eberle 241
    19 Jonathan Toews 241
    20 Eric Staal 239
    21 Jakub Voracek 238
    22 Blake Wheeler 238
    23 Henrik Zetterberg 236
    24 Erik Karlsson 235
    25 Max Pacioretty 234
    26 Corey Perry 233
    27 Daniel Sedin 233
    28 Marian Hossa 231
    29 Zach Parise 229
    30 Patrick Marleau 225

  151. SwedishPoster says:

    I don’t know much about thanksgiving but is this how it always ends up? Seems like a drunk uncle just stepped in and revealed all the deeply hidden family secrets.

  152. littleenglish says:

    Woodguy,

    I don’t think you mean to be cherry picking, but you’re cherry picking.

    In 13-14, the sharks were one of the best 5v5 teams. Then the next season, something happened (Discovery of Cali OG? I’ve seen their eyes..)

    If you look at their shooting percentage though last year , it’s near the bottom of the league. Next they have been somewhat in a retool/decline for the past few years. Before that, they were as strong as any team 5v5/corsi wise – this is because they were a good, balanced team who had enough players willing to crash the net and go to the danger areas.

    Last year may or may not have been an anomaly.

    This Oiler thing where we are taking Eakins like shots from the outside is not Todd Mclellan hockey, I can tell you that.

  153. oliveoilers says:

    Bag of Pucks:
    On a blog that values logic and tries to remove personal bias from the equation, I don’t think it’s a controversial statement to say that as an abstract exercise there are 50 or more NHL players you could trade Jordan Eberle for that would improve the current roster. In fact it’s exceedingly obvious if you’re not confounded by bias.

    C is a more valuable position than W in this league. With that as a starting point, you can easily identify 20 #1Cs, 20 #1 Ds and 10 #1Gs you would trade Eberle for and that’s not even touching the Ws yet. So yeah, obvious.

    But the Eberle fanboy culture knows no reason. Postulating a trade scenario involving him raises the same mentality one normally associates with the ‘burn the witch’ scene in the Life of Brian. Laughable.

    To help with the accord requested by our good and always genial host, I log off for the day.

    Happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy the day and don’t forget to offer up a word of thanks for #97. It has been a very good year for Oiler fans.

    Hey BoP, this is the second reply the first timed out.

    We will never agree on Eberle. You see him as a tradable asset, which of course, he is, like any player.

    However, you are as aware as I am that on this blog, more than any other, you better bring your A game. To wit, saying there’s 50+ players we could trade Eberle for, then posting a link to TSN’s 50 top players as some kind of proof that Crosby is better than Eberle. Definitely better arguments than “are you twelve.” I’m actually 11 and a half.

    Even as an abstract exercise, it’s silly, just silly (Graham Chapman). Most of those players would take a massive add from us, or us getting a dog of a contract back. It’s also about what you give up.

    Do what I did a few weeks ago, have a snickers, a beer, a big slice of pie and come back and keep challenging our perceptions. But remember, this is very much a ‘prove it’ site. People are gonna call ya.

    I know I wouldn’t like to play poker against half of these reprobates.

    Have a good Thanksgiving, bud.

  154. RexLibris says:

    Btw, thought I’d look into McLellan’s record with the Sharks when he was first hired (2008-2009)

    Oct they went 9-2-0, November 11-1-0, December 8-1-4

    This is a good coach, he’ll get them sorted. Let’s take a breath and realize that this sad-sack team that got it’s hat handed to it almost every night the last two years just played two of the best teams from last season to near-draws.

  155. Woodguy says:

    Bag of Pucks,

    Since 11/12 Eberle is tied for 25th in points per game

    That’s pretty good.

    Minimum 160 games played.

    For those who don’t like links:

    1 Sidney Crosby 1.29
    2 Evgeni Malkin 1.2
    3 Steven Stamkos 1.06
    4 Claude Giroux 1.04
    5 John Tavares 1.03
    6 Patrick Kane 0.99
    7 Alex Ovechkin 0.99
    8 Nicklas Backstrom 0.98
    9 Pavel Datsyuk 0.97
    10 Jamie Benn 0.95
    11 Ryan Getzlaf 0.94
    12 Taylor Hall 0.94
    13 Henrik Zetterberg 0.94
    14 Phil Kessel 0.93
    15 Tyler Seguin 0.93
    16 Martin St. Louis 0.91
    17 Jonathan Toews 0.91
    18 Erik Karlsson 0.89
    19 Jason Spezza 0.89
    20 Joe Thornton 0.89
    21 Henrik Sedin 0.88
    22 James Neal 0.87
    23 Anze Kopitar 0.86
    24 Corey Perry 0.85
    25 Jordan Eberle 0.84
    26 Max Pacioretty 0.84
    27 Zach Parise 0.84
    28 Daniel Sedin 0.84
    29 Marian Hossa 0.83
    30 Patrick Sharp 0.83

  156. RexLibris says:

    SwedishPoster:
    I don’t know much about thanksgiving but is this how it always ends up? Seems like a drunk uncle just stepped in and revealed all the deeply hidden family secrets.

    Yeah, in many families it can go like this.

    Friends used to do Thanksgiving specials that all revolved around the heated, dysfunctional dynamics that play out during this holiday.

    Kind of like an impromptu Airing of Grievances.

  157. RexLibris says:

    flyfish1168: I say Charlie Brown

    Except the Vaunted One who used to visit here always used that term, and if we’re going to draw any Peanuts comparisons there, it’s to Lucy.

    Lining up the kick and yanking the football out.

    Every.

    Single.

    Time.

  158. Woodguy says:

    littleenglish,

    I can expand the sample, but eliminating a year because it was a bad year is cherry picking.

    Also,

    As FRJohnK showed above, in the first 2 games the shot location of McLellan is almost identical to Eakins.

  159. anonymous says:

    I think one good puck moving defenceman and we’re in business. Too much relying on inexperience and bottom of the order players like Fayne/ Ference/Gryba.

    Wouldn’t be against trading Eberle. Likely one of Hall/RNH/Eberle is traded in the next few years anyway. I’d probably trade Hall or Eberle for the best defenceman possible.

  160. godot10 says:

    Woodguy:
    littleenglish,

    I can expand the sample, but eliminating a year because it was a bad year is cherry picking.

    Also,

    As FRJohnK showed above, in the first 2 games the shot location of McLellan is almost identical to Eakins.

    Vancouver and Calgary are not St. Louis and Nashville.

  161. Lowetide says:

    I wanted a goalie, and we have one. My sphincter didn’t even get up today.

  162. hunter1909 says:

    719: This is a common technique used by elite athletes. You blame external things rather than yourself. This helps to maintain condience,as a loss of confidence is a killer for an athlete.

    MacT’s pet thecaptainethanmoreau also used this technique regularly.

    It’s got nothing to do with condience, or confidence. It’s got everything to do with lack of moral character, and generally being a dick.

  163. Woodguy says:

    littleenglish:
    Woodguy,

    I don’t think you mean to be cherry picking, but you’re cherry picking.

    In 13-14, the sharks were one of the best 5v5 teams. Then the next season, something happened (Discovery of Cali OG? I’ve seen their eyes..)

    If you look at their shooting percentage though last year , it’s near the bottom of the league.Next they have been somewhat in a retool/decline for the past few years.Before that, they were as strong as any team 5v5/corsi wise – this is because they were a good, balanced team who had enough players willing to crash the net and go to the danger areas.

    Last year may or may not have been an anomaly.

    This Oiler thing where we are taking Eakins like shots from the outside is not Todd Mclellan hockey, I can tell you that.

    5 year sample 09/10-14/15

    SJS:

    ShotsFor/60 31.3 – 2nd
    CorsiFor/60 59.9 – 1st
    GoalsFor/60 2.22 – 18th

    Still holds true.

    Source: http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201015&sit=5v5&sort=GF60&sortdir=DESC

    Now I’ll eliminate last year from the sample. I don’t like doing this, but you asked:

    5 year 08/09-13/14

    SJS:

    ShotsFor/60 31.5 – 3rd
    CorsiFor/60 59.4 – 1st
    GoalsFor/60 2.33 – 12th

    Still holds true, although removing that year and replacing it with 08/09 increases their scoring 0.11G/60

    Source: http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=200914&sit=5v5&sort=GF60&sortdir=DESC

  164. hunter1909 says:

    RexLibris: Btw, thought I’d look into McLellan’s record with the Sharks when he was first hired (2008-2009)
    Oct they went 9-2-0, November 11-1-0, December 8-1-4

    Thank fuck. I’m looking forward to the 9-0 rest of October.

  165. russ99 says:

    People need to remember that McLellan has been coaching these guys for a little over a month, and only two games against good competition.

    Rome wasn’t built in a day, and unlearning bad habits and undoing bad coaching isn’t either.

    I suspect we’ll see slow gradual improvement rather than the light goes in over the team and they all go “aha!” and be able to all play a complete hockey game.

    The other thing to keep in mind is that this is a fresh slate for everyone and Chiarelli will be able to make judgements on players and roster decisions on what he sees/the numbers show, rather that what the myriad fingers of the old regime still left have told him.

  166. hunter1909 says:

    godot10: Why is Katz holding an NDP rally at Rexall Thursday night?

    The same reason Katz does anything. There’s money to be made.

  167. striatic says:

    Walter Gretzkys Neighbour,

    What you’re saying feels true, with the exception of the games Nurse played in the pre-season. It’s not strictly about the fact that he fights, that’s a symptom, but about how he gives a damn.

    Late in preseason Nurse threw away a puck in the defensive zone, was left puck watching as it turned into a turnover and as a result screened the goalie on the ensuing shot.

    Rookie mistake, cost him any shot at the opening roster, and a lesson learned. The important bit was that skating off the ice after the goal, Nurse was absolutely, thoroughly *disgusted with himself* and Pissed Off. Like that scene from Boys on the Bus where the Oilers enter the locker room after a loss, simply irate.

    Before Nurse, that was what Taylor Hall used to be like until he had half the passion beat out of him from years of losing.

    The Oilers have young players by age, but they are old in NHL experience unlike the players on CGY and VAN or Oilers like Nurse and Draisaitl who are in the AHL because you can’t teach passion but you can certainly un-learn it.

  168. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: My 6 year old and I are playing Chutes and Ladders and she aggressively cheers every time I hit a chute.

    Might I recommend two person basketball? That’ll show her!

  169. Woodguy says:

    godot10: Vancouver and Calgary are not St. Louis and Nashville.

    Yes and 2 games is small sample.

    Eakins entire sample is Oct 1/13 to Dec 15/14

    SCF/60 = 25.4 – 19th in NHL
    HDSC/60 = 10.6 – 14th in NHL.

    The narrative that Eakins had them “shoot from the outside” has no basis in reality.

    Data via War on ice

  170. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909: Might I recommend two person basketball? That’ll show her!

    Great idea.

    I’ll give her a knee to the chops when I go downtown too

  171. Woodguy says:

    hunter1909: The same reason Katz does anything. There’s money to be made.

    *whooosh*

  172. hunter1909 says:

    Walter Gretzkys Neighbour:
    Ok, disclaimer here – this isn’t going to be anything meaningful in the way of hockey analysis. But, I have been doing soul searching last night and this morning (I’m in Ontario in case the handle didn’t suggest that). I’m not much of a regular poster here – I chime in now and then. But I am very interested in this site and the views and opinions of those of you who are regular and those of you who do so much analysis and research. Hats off to you guys. You make this site a treat and of course LT – who puts such heart into this, you are a gem. It’s really a credit to the depth of emotion we all feel about hockey and the Oilers specifically when we see the passion of everyone here.

    My soul searching has to do with this very fundamental issue. For so many years I have expended energy, anxiety, emotion and thought on this team. I grew up in Edmonton, watched this franchise in the WHA (went to the first ever game at “Northlands”), watched and agonized as they lost the last Avco Cup, celebrated as they made the jump to the NHL and followed with joyful anticipation through the great years and the Cup wins and the domination of teams like Calgary and Vancouver etc.

    I’ve never been able to loosen the hold the Oilers have on my heart – despite the fact that I have essentially been an Ontario resident since 1982. But I am feeling today after the years of losing and the last two games – I’m not sure I can dedicate my self to this anymore. I am not writing this to be convinced or anything. I’m writing this because this is the first place I have ever been able to really SAY stuff like this about the Oilers – you know out loud! I feel like this is a group of people who understand the pleasure and the pain of being an Oiler fan.

    But here are my thoughts early in this season. Fundamentally there is something WRONG with the Oiler franchise. I watched the game last night (well most of it anyway) and then I watched a good deal of the Vancouver Calgary game. There’s literally no comparison between these 3 teams. Two of them are very similar and one of the look totally out of place.Calgary’s young small players can DOMINATE when they turn it up. No Oilers can seem to match that level of intensity and performance.

    There was energy, action, heart, emotion, excitement in the Calgary Vancouver game. Oilers? And honestly, I’m REALLY trying to be objective – I just don’t see it. Goaltending with Talbot – WAY better. After that nothing. This is a team that has Hall, RNH, Yakupov, McDavid – all first overall picks. The defence corp is appalling bad, just mindnumpingly bad really – even with an admirable and welcome uptick in the play of Justin Schultz. But as a team, it seems like they have no energyor intensity at all.

    What I’m trying to get at is the Oilers – no matter who is on the ice – always look the exact same. Weak, soft ineffective, confused, out of position, flatfooted, on the receiving end of checks never dealing them out, often falling, scrambling, whiffing on passes, missing the net and on and on.Where are we with coaches now? Five in the lat 6 years?

    They are a terrible looking team. No matter what some advances stats may say specifically about last night’s game. They drive no play, they dominate no area of the ice, they create no spark, excitement or really anything. Hell even Nick Kypreos is starting to lighten up on them.

    My son says I’m not really objective and I suspect that maybe true. But I am truly worn out from hoping this team will turn it around and gel and show something. I said I think there is something wrong with the organization. I thought with Chiarelli and McLellan , new assistant coaches, cleaning out the scouts etc would change this but I am really concerned that they won’t matter either.

    So what I have decided is this, as someone said in the game thread yesterday – I am not going to watch any further Oiler games until such time as there is a significant change either on the roster to address the issues or in the manor in which the current team plays. They have zero identity, zero chemistry and put out a substandard product.

    I love reading ideas and thoughts of you allhere and I’ll stay reading, maybe chiming in now and then. I just can’t stand watching the continual frustrations, failure and futility.

    I really think Lowe, McTavish and Howson should just be summarily fired – maybe that will start the process. I don’t know.

    I will conclude this aimless post by saying thanks in advance to any of you who may read this and who understand the frustration. This has been such a great franchise in the long ago past – I’d like to see it come back to that some day. Thanks for listening to me vent.

    That’s all very well, but…

    What exactly do you think is wrong?

  173. Магия 10 says:

    Woodguy: 18 Jordan Eberle 241
    19 Jonathan Toews 241

    Basically a saw off. So throw in a 7th and call it a deal

  174. G Money says:

    Fun thread!

    godot10: Vancouver and Calgary are not St. Louis and Nashville.

    100%. I think the 39.8% CF% the Oilers put up against St Louis last year was their worst game of the year. A big tough Hitchcock coached dead-puck team is kryptonite to the Oilers.

    To play them at home so close to breakeven in the very first game is no minor feat.

    I don’t get why there is so much consternation.

    Just saw a tweet a little while ago that the consensus from folks attending the current RITHAC (Rochester Inst of Tech Hockey Analytics Conference) is that Nashville has the best D in the league right now.

    As long as the Oilers (who are still the youngest team in the league) do not lose their trust in the system and the coach as a result of this brutal early stretch, when they do finally play one of the weak sisters, I’m hoping it will feel like a walk in the park by comparison.

    russ99,

    I’d suggest we give the new roster players at least 5 games to get adapted to the NHL, and the players overall about 10 games to get a handle on TMc’s systems.

    Short term results aside, I can already see a significant improvement in their game this year from last year (notwithstanding the PP, and when Ference is on the ice).

    Am I the only one that thinks this? [Thankfully Rex sees much the same – whether that means he and I are watching for the same things, or alternatively, share the same brand of crazy … remains to be seen]

  175. flyfish1168 says:

    Lowetide: My sphincter didn’t even get up today.

    Maybe a 2nd helping of turkey is what you need. LOL 🙂

  176. kinger_OIL says:

    Walter :
    – Don’t worry I feel you pain – plus guys will tell you that you and your post is sh%t because its not consensus, and wish you good riddance

  177. SwedishPoster says:

    G Money,

    I agree as well. This is a much more sound team already. The basic structure looks better. With a working PP there would be far less arguing as that tends to hide offensive issues 5v5 as long as the D is there. In a way it might be blessing that the PP has been cold as it puts a light on 5v5. But as a whole I’m actually encouraged by the start.

  178. oliveoilers says:

    Магия 10: Basically a saw off. So throw in a 7th and call it a deal

    Bowman just called back and said there’s no way he’s throwing in a seventh. Toews for Eberle or the deal’s off.

  179. Магия 10 says:

    oliveoilers: Bowman just called back and said there’s no way he’s throwing in a seventh.Toews for Eberle or the deal’s off.

    Looks like a little compelting is in order then.

    Update: If we cave it’s a least 7 years of LT saying he likes Toews but technically it was an overpay.

  180. verdad2.0 says:

    As I have said for months this team is going to start no better than Eakins.
    It needs to deconstructed.

    Its core players are losers. Flat out true.
    Still waiting for the likes of RNH or Hall to actually take a game and assert their will on it.
    Never happens.

    This team needs to be rebuilt. We know this. They are just shameful to watch.
    Max Domi more dominant than any Oiler forward. That tells you all you need to know.

  181. oliveoilers says:

    Магия 10: Looks like a little compelting is in order then.

    Gonna be compelting myself to eat turkey leftovers for the rest of the week.

  182. oliveoilers says:

    verdad2.0:
    AsI have said for months this team is going to start no better than Eakins.
    It needs to deconstructed.

    Its core players are losers. Flat out true.
    Still waiting for the likes of RNH or Hall to actually take a game and assert their will on it.
    Never happens.

    This team needs to be rebuilt. We know this. They are just shameful to watch.
    Max Domi more dominant than any Oiler forward. That tells you all you need to know.

    Happy Thanksgiving, Verdad!

  183. Bad Seed says:

    kinger_OIL,

    WTF? What are you doing back?

    🙂

  184. oliveoilers says:

    Hey LT, what’s the criteria for a comment moderation?

    Is it random?

  185. Магия 10 says:

    oliveoilers:
    Hey LT, what’s the criteria for a comment moderation?

    Is it random?

    23 across. I need a 6 letter name beginning with a V.

    No doubt to keep the fire friendly.

  186. Woodguy says:

    kinger_OIL,

    plus guys will tell you that you and your post is sh%t because its not consensus

    No, its shit when there’s not proof.

    As for “consensus”, in the last week I:

    -disagreed with LT on DrySaddle.
    -disagreed with Gmoney on Scrivens
    -disagreed with most on Yak
    -disagree with most on Gryba

    No ones pushed me out for disagreeing yet….. (*checks twitter DMs*)

    What most here don’t like is hyperbole not backed up with any facts.

    That’s the only consensus I’ve ever seen.

  187. Woodguy says:

    VerfreakingDad Two.Oh,

    Max Domi more dominant than any Oiler forward.

    This is a great example of hyperbole with no evidence.

    Still waiting for the likes of RNH or Hall to actually take a game and assert their will on it.
    Never happens.

    RNH-Hall-Purcell run over 60% against Weber and they’re dog shit.

    You are the worst poster ever.

    At least DSF included some semblance of reality in his posts.

  188. Магия 10 says:

    I can’t read worth beans today.comment deleted.

  189. oliveoilers says:

    Last 4 posts all pure gold, Jerry.

    Talk to you all later, got to get the pies out of the oven and start on the meal.

    Peace out, and keep her shiny side up.

  190. "Steve Smith" says:

    Woodguy:
    VerfreakingDad Two.Oh,
    You are the worst poster ever.

    Challenge accepted!

  191. GCW_69 says:

    Woodguy:
    Bag of Pucks,

    Since 11/12 Eberle is tied for 25th in points per game

    That’s pretty good.

    Minimum 160 games played.

    For those who don’t like links:

    1Sidney Crosby1.29
    2Evgeni Malkin1.2
    3Steven Stamkos1.06
    4Claude Giroux1.04
    5John Tavares1.03
    6Patrick Kane0.99
    7Alex Ovechkin0.99
    8Nicklas Backstrom0.98
    9Pavel Datsyuk0.97
    10Jamie Benn0.95
    11Ryan Getzlaf0.94
    12Taylor Hall0.94
    13Henrik Zetterberg0.94
    14Phil Kessel0.93
    15Tyler Seguin0.93
    16Martin St. Louis0.91
    17Jonathan Toews0.91
    18Erik Karlsson0.89
    19Jason Spezza0.89
    20Joe Thornton0.89
    21Henrik Sedin0.88
    22James Neal0.87
    23Anze Kopitar0.86
    24Corey Perry0.85
    25Jordan Eberle0.84
    26Max Pacioretty0.84
    27Zach Parise0.84
    28Daniel Sedin0.84
    29Marian Hossa0.83
    30Patrick Sharp0.83

    Goals per game he is 23rd, which is also pretty damn good. Hall is 24th.

    He is also 18th in offensive point shares. Hall is 28th.

    Goals created Eberle is 17th, Hall is 38th.

    No matter how you slice it, Eberle is a very very good player and a key to the Oilers offence.

  192. Lowetide says:

    oliveoilers:
    Hey LT, what’s the criteria for a comment moderation?

    Is it random?

    No.

  193. VERDAD3.0 says:

    Crosby doesn’t have a shot in 2 games.

    As I have said for months until he he trades Malkin for OEL the Penguins are loosers.

    Max Domi more dominate than any Pens forwards. Thats all you need to know.

  194. Younger Oil says:

    VERDAD3.0:
    Crosby doesn’t have a shot in 2 games.

    As I have said for months until he he trades Malkin for OEL the Penguins are loosers.

    Max Domi more dominate than any Pens forwards.Thats all you need to know.

    I love you.

  195. VOR says:

    GMoney,

    How long would you wait before you made major changes to the Oilers roster? If they still haven’t gelled at game twenty do you really shake things up? I get that you think it takes time for all the changes to take effect but in your model is there an absolute drop dead date?

  196. Halfwise says:

    VERDAD3.0:
    Crosby doesn’t have a shot in 2 games.

    As I have said for months until he he trades Malkin for OEL the Penguins are loosers.

    Max Domi more dominate than any Pens forwards.Thats all you need to know.

    I think the Pens wanted Weber for Malkin. They could of made that deal if they weren’t such loosers.

  197. Halfwise says:

    verdad2.0:

    Still waiting for the likes of RNH or Hall to actually take a game and assert their will on it.
    Never happens.

    Based on this line of reasoning, Oilers should have never traded GoneYay.

  198. G Money says:

    HOLY SH*T. I hate to interrupt the family feud with positivity but …

    About two months ago, I was at a bit of a standstill and on the verge of giving up on a variety of my data projects, because I just couldn’t get some of the NHL scraping of key data working properly. Time on ice (shifts for players) in particular, rosters secondarily.

    Then war-on-ice decided to release all of their data as play by play files! Whoop! Problem solved! I rewrote all my scripts to read their files instead of my own scraped files, and I was off to the races.

    Once I got the key calculations working, my plan is/was to release a bunch of shot type / distance / location / difficulty / score adjusted metrics after each game. Other sites do this too, but one thing that is hard to find is to get that info on a player + d pair + forward line + 5 man unit basis, which I was planning to include as well.

    Which worked great until I realized a week ago that it doesn’t look like war-on-ice will be releasing this stuff game by game. Only the whole shebang at the end of each season. I’ve nagged them and also @MannyElk via Twitter about it, but so far nothing.

    So its great for retrospective looks, but in-season … not so much.

    Yesterday, with much reluctance, I figured I better start seeing if I could get back to scraping this stuff myself. Dug into my old scripts with a fresh eye. Discombobulated the various NHL pages. Tested a few different heuristics for extracting the relevant data and ignoring all the extraneous crap.

    Took a break for hockey and football. Tested some more.

    Got it working this afternoon.

    Yeah baby! THAT IS SOME *FINE* LOOKIN’ DATA! Back on track!

    OK, back to the regularly scheduled … whatever it is.

  199. G Money says:

    VOR:
    GMoney,

    How long would you wait before you made major changes to the Oilers roster? If they still haven’t gelled at game twenty do you really shake things up? I get that you think it takes time for all the changes to take effect but in your model is there an absolute drop dead date?

    Good question.

    I kind of laid out some of my baseline expectations in my last NerdAlert, which talked specifically about the horrific early season schedule. At best, this team with this roster is a mid-pack bubble-playoff team. Reasonable expectations? .333 against elite teams, .500 against fellow mid-pack teams, .667 against bottom-feeders.

    But temper that down a bit in the early going (for gelling purposes) and a bit higher later in the season (where the roster should be mature and fully versed in the system, just as the schedule becomes a whole lot easier).

    I guess the challenge here is – because of that brutal schedule, roster turnover, new system – it’s the process moreso than the result right now.

    Patience would be for as long as the team looks like they are getting the hang of it. ‘It’ being in particular, five man breakouts with support, uptempo puck pressure in the offense and neutral zone, better defensive positioning, and some position battles in front of the bad guys net (lots of stuff this team needs to work on).

    I see those things – lots of them – so far, and I also saw an improvement (Ference notwithstanding) from Game 1 to Game 2.

    So at this point, I’m not that worried about the results.

    But the results do have to start coming at some point.

    If we’re at game 10, and the team has had some games at home and some games against non-elite teams, and you don’t start seeing the process translate into results, then I’d start considering changes.

    But so far, in context I haven’t seen anything to suggest that the team isn’t about where it should be.

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