STEP BY STEP

by Lowetide

We survived Tabernac Saturday, and it pleased the lord. Cam Talbot is a key player in this season for the Edmonton Oilers, and his importance was on display last night, In a playoff-style 1-1 game, the veteran goalie stopped 26 of 27 (.963) and gave his team a chance to win an important game. That’s the gig, and Talbot has been quality (in my opinion) for the team this year. Running up that hill is a lot easier when the goalie goals.

BEAUTIFUL SUNDAY, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in October 2015: 4-8-0, goal differential -7
  • Oilers in October 2016: 7-2-0, goal differential +10
  • Oilers in November 2015: 4-7-2, goal differential -6
  • Oilers in November 2016: 5-8-2 goal differential -3
  • Oilers in December 2015: 7-6-1, goal differential -9
  • Oilers in December 2016: 7-2-5, goal differential +3
  • Oilers in January 2016: 4-5-2, goal differential -5
  • Oilers in January 2017: 4-3-0, goal differential -3
  • Oilers after 45, 2015-16: 17-23-5, goal differential -27
  • Oilers after 45, 2016-17: 23-15-7, goal differential +7

The Oilers improvement in goal differential year over year (+34) is impressive, although the October number skews the season overall. The point improvement (+14) is solid to excellent, and you can see a few ways for this team to make the postseason (top 3 Pacific, failure of one California team, faltering Central). Edmonton finished 31-43-8 last season, meaning the club went 14-20-3 from this point to the end of the 2015-16 season. If the Oilers duplicated last year’s record, they would finish 37-35-10, for 84 points. That would be a disappointment, but would still be a significant step forward. If they continue to grab points at current rate, this Oilers team will finish with 97 points, the most since the glory days. The NHL gives out points in a different manner nowadays, but that projected point total is impressive all the same.

STARTING GOALIE NUMBERS (SP)

  • Talbot overall: .918 (No. 13 among starters)
  • Talbot at even strength: .922 (No. 18 among starters)
  • Talbot on the penalty kill: .896 (No. 8 among starters)

I would call that slightly above average, you may have a differing opinion. Talbot posted win No. 22 last night and seems destined to pass 30 between Valentine’s and the Ides of March.

DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

  • Klefbom—Benning went 16-6 together, in a game like last night that is damned near unpossible. And of course, because nothing makes sense in nature, this pairing gave up the only EV GA by either side. Klefbom went 2-7 against Backlund’s line. Oscar is shooting the puck often, he ranks No. 6 in the NHL in shots-60 by a defender.
  • Davidson—Gryba went 5-8 together, I find myself impatient for Davidson to get up to speed, but these things take time. I still think it might have been better to have a conditioning stint. Gryba went 4-3 against Backlund, and has the second best Corsi Rel 5×5 on the team (behind the magician Benning).
  • Sekera—Russell went 6-16 together, including a monstrous 1-9 with the Letestu line. Both men made some effective plays inside getting caved in possession, Russell made a nifty play behind his own net on (I think it was) Tkachuk, as an example. Sekera went 1-12 against Gaudreau. The Oilers need a third line center.
  • Stats via NHL.com, NaturalStatTrick and HockeyStats.ca.

FORWARDS, LAST NIGHT

  • Pouliot—Nuge—Eberle performed well together, Nuge had an assist and I think Eberle earned a goal but nothing rhymes for him these days. Pouliot has regained his game, I think he was thinking too much (that must be the problem with this whole damned line). Anyway, credit to Todd McLellan for keeping them together, I think they cash this coming week. Went 5-6 against the Backlund line, 3-3 against Monahan line.
  • Lucic—Caggiula—Slepyshev went 5-6 together and I thought the trio looked good in limited minutes. Lucic spent time with Letestu (and Slepyshev) going 0-7, and that is where I noticed a lot of also in photo moments. I have no answer for it, but ML needs to get to plays a lot more often, and we are past the midway point of the season. The idea of playing on the soft minutes 3line is to dominate, and that did not happen. Milan needs to be better 5×5, a lot better. Caggiula went 3-2 against Backlund.
  • Maroon—McDavid—Draisaitl went 9-13 together, but for me the real story was an extremely quiet first 40 minutes. Things picked up in the final frame and then McDavid slammed the Flames when he got some air. Oilers need another scoring line in order to get 97 some Clearance Clarence out there. McDavid went 5-9 against Giordano, the numbers don’t show any of the forward lines being hard matched. 97 was 4-6 against Monahan and 1-3 against Stajan, 1-3 against Backlund.
  • Hendricks—Letestu—Kassian went 7-6 in some depth minutes, I didn’t think the group got a lot done. Then again, they didn’t get scored on either, so there is that. Letestu is money in the shootout, another item in what is a pretty damned handy tool kit.

ABOUT LAST NIGHT

I think the Oilers missed Adam Larsson and his steady play, and absolutely have to find a second scoring line soon. For me, that was a playoff game last night, and Edmonton was not the better of the two teams. Now, that doesn’t mean Calgary is superior, and I was impressed that the Oilers could win that style of game against the Flames—who are a good, if inconsistent, hockey club. The southern visitors were on the second of a BTB but accounted well for themselves in my opinion. As big a test as it was for the home side, this coming Saturday will be a higher mountain. Many rivers to cross.

PIKES PEAK

This is the kind of table we have been screaming for since 2006 fall, and last night’s win lets some air into the room. I think last night’s game also gives us a chance to honestly evaluate what is needed for this team to succeed—now, and into the future.

NEEDS

Edmonton heads to the deadline lacking balance in some important areas. We know all problems cannot be solved, but Peter Chiarelli should have no trouble filling his days and nights up to the deadline.

  • Two-way Center for the third line. Martin Hanzal is ideal for Edmonton, the cost is very likely too dear. I don’t have a name for you, but grabbing a veteran center, moving Drake Caggiula to the wing or minors, is an instant improvement for this team.
  • Substantial backup goalie. Cam Talbot was very good last night, but the Oilers are terribly vulnerable to injury/slump at this position, unnecessarily. Peter Chiarelli fixed this a year ago in mid-summer with Anders Nilsson, needs to do it again.
  • A Fernando Pisani. The RW depth chart last night featured Leon Draisaitl, Jordan Eberle and Zack Kassian. I have no quarrel with that group, or Anton Slepyshev (or Tyler Pitlick) long term, but Edmonton really does need a Fernando Pisani for this emerging bottom 6F. What do I mean by a Fernando Pisani? A 15-goal (even-strength goals) young veteran who can be the defensive conscience for a line while also mentoring one or two youths. I could call this spot a Marty Reasoner and it would have the same meaning. If the Oilers are going to be bringing along young, inexpensive talent in third and fourth line roles—and they are—then a foundation player is going to be required.

TODD MCLELLAN

  • “It was very playoff-like. Very little space for both teams. We really had to work for everything we got.”

This morning, as we sit and enjoy that standings table, it is also worth discussing this team as a playoff roster. Peter Chiarelli needs to replace Drake Caggiula with someone who is a veteran, needs to replace the Pitlick spot with more of a two-way mentor, and needs a significant backup goalie. The list of needs is dwindling, and defense isn’t on the needs list (depending on injury) at this time—that alone should be breaking news.

This team can make the playoffs, but it is not assured this morning. There is a lack of balance in important spots and it could cost the postseason, even now, this late in the season. Will Peter Chiarelli use some future assets to improve this roster, or will he keep his powder dry.

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JimmyV1965

maxwell_mischief:
treevojo,

19.75

Vanek is on the Wings

If the Wild wanted to offer Parise, Pominville, Brodin for Nuge, Ebs, Pouliot, Fayne… i would take that trade

Thank god you’re not the GM.

treevojo

maxwell_mischief,

Vanek is still being paid 1.5 this year and 2.5 next year by Minnesota.

I would not make the trade of their 4 salaries for our 4.

Scungilli Slushy

SwedishPoster:
The “oh he doesn’t care” or “his heart isn’t in it” explanation is used way too often when athletes underperform(Or if it’s a player you really like, “he must be injured”)
It’s rarely the problem with elite athletes. And I doubt it has anything to do with Lucic, Ebs et al not being up to par this season.
In the case of Lucic I’d argue a few different angles.
A. He’s flat out losing his step. There were some comments out of LA suggesting that he wasn’t as effective as he used to though the reports were conflicting and Kings management seemed keen on resigning him. He’s not so old that the drop off should arrive already but it happens, he’s played a demanding style his entire career.
B. He came into the season with high hopes on his performance, playing next to McDavid he may very well have imagined a career year and when the fit between the two wasn’t there he lost his confidence and timing. When you’re not performing the way you’d like there’s a risk you start questioning a lot of the things that gave success in the first place. If he tried to tweak his game to fit Connor, it did look like that at times imo, it might have been enough to throw his game off.
C. We’re overreacting, he’s just in a bit of a rough patch and just need two-three strong games to lose the frustration.

In the case of Eberle the B option works pretty neatly. I guess C as well. I think the last few games he’s started to look better, he holds on to the puck better and is starting to carry it into heavy traffic more which is usually a sign that he’s heating up.

In the case of RNH it’s an issue that’s gone on longer, his offense has been slightly underwhelming for a while, at least for a guy with his skillset, there’s a bigger contributer in there. Imo he’s lost a lot of his creativity offensively the last few seasons,my theory is that the task of being cast as a #1C from pretty much day 1 of his NHL career made him so focused on playing a 200 ft game he lost his offensivemojo, he tries to be so clever and perfectly coached all the time he overthinks things. All that covering for his defensively idiotic wingers has taken it’s toll I guess. I personally think that Nuge is miscast as the twoway hero he’s often lauded as, his defensive game is ok to good due to being a hard worker but he’s not a natural in his own end, he’s better cast a primarily offensive playmaker who holds his own defensively and all that focus on being a defensive stalwart is taking away from his main assets.

Pouliot has always struggled with consistency. I also think he’s been coming on the last few games. If they keep that 2nd line together I think the goals will start coming.

And that’s all my wild speculation for the day.

Good points Swedish as usual. Overall offense is spotty but it isn’t the problem. GA is the problem. The elite teams have similar GF to us but lower GA. Maybe Lucic is trying to help on the GA side and messing up his game.

I agree about Nuge. The best thing would be to acquire a tough minutes centre that could take say half of the elite comp off Nuge and let him relax and play the game like he did for team NA. Lucic could play with the other centre.

The holes I see aren’t new. For me what would take the team to the next level right now is a proper back up of course, and a third line centre preferably RHS on a decent contract brought in to saw off more than score which makes the decent contract possible. I would prefer the player fit with what the team should be with it’s leader being Connor – a guy with some pace and tenacity.

The last piece for me is a solid 2RHD. Benning should be playing third on a good team. Oscar as well till he gets the wobbles out. He and Nurse should be alternating behind Sekera depending on whose more steady. I prefer a two way type, as Burns and Weber aren’t available and I’m not convinced about the names that pop up that are offensively geared. I also am not a fan of having to shelter 5-6 M $ players 5v5

maxwell_mischief

treevojo,

19.75

Vanek is on the Wings

If the Wild wanted to offer Parise, Pominville, Brodin for Nuge, Ebs, Pouliot, Fayne… i would take that trade

treevojo

maxwell_mischief:
I thnk that it is less a matter of the oilers needing veterans
and more a matter of the veterans we do have playing like real nhl players
RNH, Pouliot, Eberle, Fayne….
worth 20+ million
and right now combine for 21 goals
I think you’d have trouble finding a group of veterans making that kind of money, doing less for their teams

Minnesota is the first team I checked

Parise, pominville, brodin and Thomas vanek.

Roughly 19 mil

16 goals for Minnesota this year

SwedishPoster

The “oh he doesn’t care” or “his heart isn’t in it” explanation is used way too often when athletes underperform(Or if it’s a player you really like, “he must be injured”)
It’s rarely the problem with elite athletes. And I doubt it has anything to do with Lucic, Ebs et al not being up to par this season.
In the case of Lucic I’d argue a few different angles.
A. He’s flat out losing his step. There were some comments out of LA suggesting that he wasn’t as effective as he used to though the reports were conflicting and Kings management seemed keen on resigning him. He’s not so old that the drop off should arrive already but it happens, he’s played a demanding style his entire career.
B. He came into the season with high hopes on his performance, playing next to McDavid he may very well have imagined a career year and when the fit between the two wasn’t there he lost his confidence and timing. When you’re not performing the way you’d like there’s a risk you start questioning a lot of the things that gave success in the first place. If he tried to tweak his game to fit Connor, it did look like that at times imo, it might have been enough to throw his game off.
C. We’re overreacting, he’s just in a bit of a rough patch and just need two-three strong games to lose the frustration.

In the case of Eberle the B option works pretty neatly. I guess C as well. I think the last few games he’s started to look better, he holds on to the puck better and is starting to carry it into heavy traffic more which is usually a sign that he’s heating up.

In the case of RNH it’s an issue that’s gone on longer, his offense has been slightly underwhelming for a while, at least for a guy with his skillset, there’s a bigger contributer in there. Imo he’s lost a lot of his creativity offensively the last few seasons, my theory is that the task of being cast as a #1C from pretty much day 1 of his NHL career made him so focused on playing a 200 ft game he lost his offensivemojo, he tries to be so clever and perfectly coached all the time he overthinks things. All that covering for his defensively idiotic wingers has taken it’s toll I guess. I personally think that Nuge is miscast as the twoway hero he’s often lauded as, his defensive game is ok to good due to being a hard worker but he’s not a natural in his own end, he’s better cast a primarily offensive playmaker who holds his own defensively and all that focus on being a defensive stalwart is taking away from his main assets.

Pouliot has always struggled with consistency. I also think he’s been coming on the last few games. If they keep that 2nd line together I think the goals will start coming.

And that’s all my wild speculation for the day.

Scungilli Slushy

kinger_OIL: –“Lucic has trade value even if sucking”: really?

– “This team can make the playoffs, but it is not assured this morning” – they SHOULD make playoffs.

– “playoffs are not assured” – nothing is assured.Likely, not assured

– “I know he costs $6MM/yr and pushed an All Star but does Lucic count?” – comeon man

– “He doesn’t seem that interested in the hockey game playing part of his job.” – comeon man

– “If part of the reason for trading Hall was his “lack of a 200ft game”, his replacement is worse at that aspect of the game.” – comeon man,

– “Year one is not a good year to look disinterested” – really?u

– “He’s not hitting and he’s losing the puck left and right” – wow

– “he needs to be much better”

Man…

I think it would take more than this run of games on a new team
to destroy the rep of the leagues most sought after power forward.

Woodguy v2.0

spoiler,

Me neither

maxwell_mischief

I thnk that it is less a matter of the oilers needing veterans
and more a matter of the veterans we do have playing like real nhl players
RNH, Pouliot, Eberle, Fayne….
worth 20+ million
and right now combine for 21 goals
I think you’d have trouble finding a group of veterans making that kind of money, doing less for their teams

spoiler

Georges: A while back, I posted that the variance in shot attempts was decreasing and that this is to be expected when teams are taught that winning the shot attempts battle has a strong correlation to winning and that shot attempts is a variable they can control. I was behind the curve. This guy said it last season.
http://whartonmagazine.com/blogs/why-the-hockey-analytics-revolution-may-be-its-own-undoing/

This was an excellent read. Thank you for the link. The quantum mechanics of hockey.

spoiler

Woodguy v2.0: His 5v5 productions this year is: 1.12pts/60, which places his 12th among Oiler fowards who have played at least 50 minutes and is 4th line production.

I think people are gonna hate Hanzal then…

@ EVs

P/60: 0.88 or 25 percent below above-mentioned 4th line production. 12th on ARI

Most common teammates: Vrbata, OEL, Reider, Domi, Goligoski
Opposition: 2nd toughest to toughest

FF% 44.7 or 11th among ARI Fs (4 percent and 6 spots lower than last season)

2 EV assists on the year.

Slower than Lucic, LHS, injury prone.

Bright spot: 21st in the League in FO percentage, with a stellar 54 percent won.

He’s not a player I would chase, and I certainly would not give up a significant asset to rent him.

Woodguy v2.0

kinger_OIL,

Yes, really.

Woodguy v2.0

Mr. The Bear,

Lucic avg
80gm 19G 52P 13.9 SH%
16-17 pace
82gm 18G 49P 9.8 SH%
11.8% gets 22G 53P

The angst around Lucic is his 5v5 production.

From 12/-13 – 15/16 he put up 1.95pts/60 5v5.

He was over 2pts/60 every year but the one where his father passed away, that is first line production.

He was ostensibly brought in to replace Hall’s production (or a portion thereof, I guess 75%)

His 5v5 productions this year is: 1.12pts/60, which places his 12th among Oiler fowards who have played at least 50 minutes and is 4th line production.

That is the source of the angst.

You are correct that his overall production is in line with his history.

That is because his 5v4 production is far higher than his history

12/13-15/16 he produced 3.05 pts/60 playing 5v4.

This year he has produced 6.32pts/60, 2nd on the Oilers behind only Draisaitl.

So overall he’s on track.

The debate can be “are PP points less valuable than 5v5 points?”

The debate can also be “is it ok that Lucic’s product 5v5 is poor because his 5v4 production is good?”

I don’t think its debatable that his 5v5 production is poor though.

Also,

Agreed with you on those other players.

There is a lot of expensive stink right now and they all need to burn their sticks at center ice and ask The Hockey Gords to forgive them for whatever transgressions has incurred their wrath.

Might improve the ice a bit as well.

Chelios is a Dinosaur

Not always wrong per se but always condescending. I sure hope they don’t renew Bruce Wayne’s contract next season. Bring back Louie Debrusk!

Zelepukin

OilClog:
Tbh any points Lucic puts up is a plus, players on this team stand up taller then they ever have, they’re coming to each others aide, holding themselves accountable. He’s a main contributor to the culture change, if you’re not seeing that aspect of the game, you’re using a far too narrow view on what’s going on.

Lucic is snake bitten, and should be in 67’s spot.

He’s giving up time to Maroon which is expected, yet was out scoring Maroon before the line changes.

With Eberle not scoring, everyone suffers.

People want to trade away Lucic when this team is going to go on some Mcdavid runs to the playoffs over the course of the next decade.. That’s batshit crazy. Regardless of points, he’ll be bringing much needed qualities to survive the post season.

Culture chance = Lucic. Everyone in the gym after working out for an hour knows who the biggest dog is, they’ve responded to Lucic bark and it’s showing, Lucic’s personal stats will come.

Truth and as always Ricki brings the stats to support the Lucic storyline of his play has been as advertised.

Comments like, he doesn’t seem that interested in playing hockey, are as Kinger commented, absolutely ridiculous. If anything Lucic is one of most emotionally driven players on the whole team.

My belief is that Lucic’s value as a leader and game-changer, either through physical play or on the bench, will only increase as the season winds down and into the playoffs.

As someone mentioned earlier, our breakout systems definitely don’t play to his strengths. His acceleration isn’t great so the standing- still bank pass or requiring him to skate with the puck through the neutral zone are horrible options. He needs to be the first winger in on a dump-in.

OilClog

Tbh any points Lucic puts up is a plus, players on this team stand up taller then they ever have, they’re coming to each others aide, holding themselves accountable. He’s a main contributor to the culture change, if you’re not seeing that aspect of the game, you’re using a far too narrow view on what’s going on.

Lucic is snake bitten, and should be in 67’s spot.

He’s giving up time to Maroon which is expected, yet was out scoring Maroon before the line changes.

With Eberle not scoring, everyone suffers.

People want to trade away Lucic when this team is going to go on some Mcdavid runs to the playoffs over the course of the next decade.. That’s batshit crazy. Regardless of points, he’ll be bringing much needed qualities to survive the post season.

Culture chance = Lucic. Everyone in the gym after working out for an hour knows who the biggest dog is, they’ve responded to Lucic bark and it’s showing, Lucic’s personal stats will come.

spoiler

TMac on Lucic, post-game:

“I thought he did a good job of checking tonight and that line was effective.”

Publicly any way, there doesn’t seem to be a concern.

Although, NHL coaches are notoriously more patient than internet commenters despite the commenters alleged awareness of sample size.

treevojo

JimmyV1965: I think that may have been the original reason, but TMac played them together at the Worlds and they played well together.If he really wanted to see them together for the Oil he would have done it again. They only played together five games or so.

Maybe we will get to see tmac try them together again in China 2022.

JimmyV1965

Chamucks:
DaveWatchesHockey,

If you’re not last you’re first?

I don’t feel there is anything wrong with discussing potential issues with the team. Pointing out areas of weakness or slumping players does not mean I hate the team at all. The goal in the end is a Stanley or 3, can this team right now do that? No? Well, why not?

I enjoy the wins as much as the next guy but if we sit here and talk about how great we are for not being last anymore the conversation is pointless.

You’re right of course. These types of blogs are vehicles for criticism. I’m thrilled with the Oilers this year but there will always be some kinda of issue. There will never be 500 posts gushing all over the team. It’s just the way it works. And this blog is a haven for sanity compared to others.

kinger_OIL

Chamucks:
DaveWatchesHockey,

If you’re not last you’re first?

I don’t feel there is anything wrong with discussing potential issues with the team. Pointing out areas of weakness or slumping players does not mean I hate the team at all. The goal in the end is a Stanley or 3, can this team right now do that? No? Well, why not?

I enjoy the wins as much as the next guy but if we sit here and talk about how great we are for not being last anymore the conversation is pointless.

– “Lucic has trade value even if sucking”: really?

– “This team can make the playoffs, but it is not assured this morning” – they SHOULD make playoffs.

– “playoffs are not assured” – nothing is assured. Likely, not assured

– “I know he costs $6MM/yr and pushed an All Star but does Lucic count?” – comeon man

– “He doesn’t seem that interested in the hockey game playing part of his job.” – comeon man

– “If part of the reason for trading Hall was his “lack of a 200ft game”, his replacement is worse at that aspect of the game.” – comeon man,

– “Year one is not a good year to look disinterested” – really?

– “He’s not hitting and he’s losing the puck left and right” – wow

– “he needs to be much better”

Man…

JimmyV1965

Professor Q: Actually, the reason Hall and McDavid were split up was because they had 0 chemistry together.

Draisaitl and McDavid have a plethora of chemistry together, and that is rare for McDavid.

I think that may have been the original reason, but TMac played them together at the Worlds and they played well together. If he really wanted to see them together for the Oil he would have done it again. They only played together five games or so.

stevezie

Woodguy v2.0,

Nice deep cut.

The roles were reversed come boating licence time. Fortunately he wanted to be nothing if not persistent.

DaveWatchesHockey

Chamucks:
DaveWatchesHockey,

If you’re not last you’re first?

I don’t feel there is anything wrong with discussing potential issues with the team. Pointing out areas of weakness or slumping players does not mean I hate the team at all. The goal in the end is a Stanley or 3, can this team right now do that? No? Well, why not?

I enjoy the wins as much as the next guy but if we sit here and talk about how great we are for not being last anymore the conversation is pointless.

I know what you are saying. We need to talk about something. But the rhetoric about some of these players who have performed historically well is a little much.

This is a very stats oriented blog. Well one of the most important things to remember about stats is sample size. And you are looking at very small sample sizes. Heck for lucic I’m not even sure he’s deviating from his norm (5×5 I guess…)

Dave

kinger_OIL

DaveWatchesHockey,

– I’m in the Dave/Ricki camp: “You guys are crazy”

– LT doesn’t concede that math/history/trend/consensus/league-scuttlebutt/commen sense/actual performance/comps etc suggests that this is almost certainly a playoff team.

– Betting against the team not making the playoffs: I’ll run a book all day against them not making it: straight up. Have at ‘er: all proceeds to Lowetide: who bets not playoffs, and how much?

– Milan and Hall have exactly the same goals and assists (although Hall has missed 11 games).

– Our offence is a lot better, we let in a lot less goals, our PP works, our G doesn’t suck, our D has depth, we win a lot more games, we aren’t fun to play against.

– So no we aren’t a multi-year Cup run team, but there are way more positives than negatives.

– I guess after 10 years of sky falling, it’s tough to believe. You all should.!

Chamucks

DaveWatchesHockey,

If you’re not last you’re first?

I don’t feel there is anything wrong with discussing potential issues with the team. Pointing out areas of weakness or slumping players does not mean I hate the team at all. The goal in the end is a Stanley or 3, can this team right now do that? No? Well, why not?

I enjoy the wins as much as the next guy but if we sit here and talk about how great we are for not being last anymore the conversation is pointless.

Professor Q

JimmyV1965:
Eventually the coach has to split up McDavid and Drai.They are both capable of driving offence and it spreads out the the scoring.The same reason we split up McDavid and Hall. Here’s what I think we will see at some point this season:

Maroon – McDavid – Eberle
Lucic – RNH – Drai

Actually, the reason Hall and McDavid were split up was because they had 0 chemistry together.

Draisaitl and McDavid have a plethora of chemistry together, and that is rare for McDavid.

Georges

Also important to get Drai away from CMD to get more data on what Drai is capable of generating without players like CMD and Hall. There’s a contract coming up. Contracts are commitments. They set expectations. It’s good to know as much as you can about a player so you can set reasonable expectations. Besides, JP will be playing RW with CMD long term, right?

DaveWatchesHockey

You guys are crazy 🙂

After reading all the angst about Eberle and lucic I went and looked at the high scorer list. Top 120 so solidly top 2nd line production (list includes d). Not perfect I know but I don’t think we are in “expose at the expansion draft or trade for bag of pucks” territory here.

Oilers also have the 2nd most goals in the western conference… there are only so many to go around lol.

Is there some sort of syndrome that prevents happiness after 10 years of complete abysmal failure when things are finally starting to look up? Like maybe we should be organizing some type of group therapy or something 🙂

Dave

Offside

prefonmich:
Regardless of all concerns about this team, and I have my fair share, I am going to fully enjoy today for what it is worth. A decade plus of heartache was (mostly) healed last night when the Oilers pulled out a victory in a game they never would have won in the past ten years. The defense won it for them. Let me say that again- their defense and goalie won the game for them. This. is. good.
They are where they are in the standings despite a lack of balance, a not yet up to speed ML, a slumping 6 million dollar player or two or three, some significant injuries to their back end, and a backup goalie that is not NHL calibre. That is a lot to overcome and yet we are here this morning. Let’s just ignore all of those concerns for the time being and enjoy this moment, shall we? Well I will, at least, you are welcome to join me!

I’ll join you

Woogie63

Woodguy v2.0:
and that is where I noticed a lot of also in photo moments. I have no answer for it, but ML needs to get to plays a lot more often, and we are past the midway point of the season. The idea of playing on the soft minutes 3line is to dominate, and that did not happen. Milan needs to be better 5×5, a lot better.

but Edmonton really does need a Fernando Pisani for this emerging bottom 6F. What do I mean by a Fernando Pisani? A 15-goal (even-strength goals) young veteran who can be the defensive conscience for a line while also mentoring one or two youths. I could call this spot a Marty Reasoner and it would have the same meaning. If the Oilers are going to be bringing along young, inexpensive talent in third and fourth line roles—and they are—then a foundation player is going to be required.

I know he costs $6MM/yr and pushed an All Star off the roster, but does Lucic count?

Is Letestu our Pisani? SO (and PP) goals in 2016 is as valuable or more valuable than even-strength goals in 2006.

Chachi

speeds: What’s ludicrous about actually asking him?I agree, he may well say no.

speeds: What’s ludicrous about actually asking him?I agree, he may well say no.

There’s no realistic scenario in which he says yes to waiving his NMC to be exposed to the expansion draft so there’s no point in asking him to waive it.

OriginalPouzar

Hanzal would be a very nice pick up for the stretch run – he’d provide some nice depth at the center position and another very big body. His boxcars are down this year, however, at the age of 29, that’s likely a function of his team – they can’t score and play one of the least offensive styles in the game.

Yes, he’s a minus 17 but his team has a goal differential of -44.

Its too bad he doesn’t shoot right, however, he’s almost the perfect type rental for this team, subject to acquisition cost.

Unfortunately the acquisition costs might be a little too expensive for this team – if we had a 2nd round pick this year, maybe there would be a potential deal.

JD_Wry

Georges: How fast is Slepyshev?

Apparently half a second slower than Pou in the skills contest. That’s still pretty fast.

And then McDavid puts in a lap a half second faster than Pou.

Réal Goudenyéu

ATLOil:
All the angst over Milan yet he has more points than Eberle and RNH and the same number as the mighty Hall. Hmmmmm…

He’s the current whipping boy apparently.

Georges

Nice that Calgary wakes up shedding tears over what might have been. Solid road game against a rival that’s a little ahead of them in the standings. Mostly smothered the opposing attack in regulation. Had the better chances. Hit lots of posts. Talbot robbed them on some great looks. A beautiful day up here in Edmonton.

Slepyshev looked fast. How fast is Slepyshev? May he inherit Pitlick’s luck.

Benning didn’t crater after he made a mistake. He played the whole game. That’s great.

Nuge is Pisani. He just happens to be a 1OV making $6M/year.

Lucic has to be better. What’s the over/under on better? Hall?

CMD-Maroon-Drai should be the death lineup, deployed in key situations. For the rest of the game, the rest of the team needs CMD or Drai.

A while back, I posted that the variance in shot attempts was decreasing and that this is to be expected when teams are taught that winning the shot attempts battle has a strong correlation to winning and that shot attempts is a variable they can control. I was behind the curve. This guy said it last season.

http://whartonmagazine.com/blogs/why-the-hockey-analytics-revolution-may-be-its-own-undoing/

JD_Wry

ATLOil: All the angst over Milan

It’s as if they want to make Minskmeat out of him.

ATLOil

All the angst over Milan yet he has more points than Eberle and RNH and the same number as the mighty Hall. Hmmmmm…

ASkoreyko

oscarmike:
Martin Hanzel. Hahahhahahaha.
What the heck is Hanzel doing for Arizona that make him so special that the Oilers should even be interested in.
Has 15 point and a -17 in 36 games
On a good team he would be a 4th line center or a healthy scratch.
Oilers need more production from some of their players.
Giving up draft picks for another teams junk isn’t going to help

Oilers are better off making JJ or Lander a 4th line center and moving Letestu to the 3rd line.

Look at Caleb jones and Ethan bear. Both drafted in the
4th and 5th round. Both will be Top 4D in the NHL play when
there ELC expires.

Man, show a little respect to LT on his own site. You might find people will engage in actual discussion with you if you tone this act down.

Unless you want to just keep yelling across the room at people.

hodgkins

Pechetr:
Ryan,

Just ask Justin Schultz

Speaking of Schultz, he was highlight fodder last night for the Red Wings “goal of the year”.

Also, mood seems pretty cranky around here considering the result last night. Reminds me of hanging out with a bunch of people who have hangovers.

treevojo

After visiting the oilers site it is nice to see that Chiarelli finally found a job that Mactavish can excel at.

“Back and to the left”

JimmyV1965

Scungilli: Lucic has trade value even if sucking. Maroon probably has trade value. Eberle and Pouliot don’t according to Freidman, if I was GM and wanted out of a contract with term especially for a popular player to clear cap (whom I can’t get anything for anyway) I’d be trying to move Eberle. I believe there are players in the system now that can play as well given the usage and gifted TOI.

As for Lucic, because he’s going nowhere I am glad to see them trying to ignite players not in the plans and playing him down the order. I really hope they do get it going so something helpful comes back and value is retained for the picks used. Only BP was a freebie.

Friedman and the rest of the crew on HNIC are bozos. Their opinions mean zero to me when it comes to the Oilers. They are plugged into one team – the Leafs. Oh ya, Hrudey is locked in on the Flames as well. I would rather listen to Remenda. The last thing I need to hear is one of them comment on Mathews losing a face off on purpose, just so he can craftily gain possession. LOL

JimmyV1965

Eventually the coach has to split up McDavid and Drai. They are both capable of driving offence and it spreads out the the scoring. The same reason we split up McDavid and Hall. Here’s what I think we will see at some point this season:

Maroon – McDavid – Eberle
Lucic – RNH – Drai

frjohnk

Woodguy v2.0: Its starting to look like those guys are Pakleds and Hall was Geordi Laforge.

“Geordi Laforge” could enter the zone at warp speed like few others

Pechetr

Ryan,

Just ask Justin Schultz

JimmyV1965

teddyturnbuckle:
” and Edmonton was not the better of the two teams.” I surprisingly disagree with this statement. I watched every second of last nights game and came away with a feeling that the Oilers were the better team last night.Especially in overtime.Good game last night.Surprised Jujar didn’t play last night. I really liked his game!

Although the Oil clearly dominated OT with all that extra room to fly, the play was really close in the first three periods. Each team had a handful of opportunities. Each goalie made good saves, The game was really choppy and boring. I would have expected more from a game both teams were geared up for. And maybe that’s it; they were too afraid of making mistakes.

Bag of Pucks

Lowetide: Yes. I think Pouliot may have been a bit self-inflicted by the coach, but that is a guess. RNH and Eberle have been given enough rope to choke a horse, I am past worried and now in the period where all is spent, we are having a bottle of suds as the sun goes down, and talking about the good times to push down the current times.

We’re all praying for regression, and I’m thinking, haven’t they regressed enough this season already?

N64

~ All this angst about ML. He’s been gold on shootouts. Oh. Never mind. ~

rickithebear

our players 12-13 to 15-16
Lucic avg
80gm 19G 52P 13.9 SH%
16-17 pace
82gm 18G 49P 9.8 SH%
11.8% gets 22G 53P

Healthy Eberle avg
74gm 25G 58P 13.1 SH%
16-17 pace
82gm 15G 47P 7.2% SH%
11% gets 23G 55P

RNH 13-14 to 15-16 avg
71gm 18G 48P 11.6 SH%
16-17 pace
82gm 15G 39P 6.6%
10% gets 23G 47P

Pouliot with oilers
57gm 17G 36P
16-17 pace
73gm 9G 15P

Lucic is performing as expected!

the other 3 are not!
RNH and Eberle can be rescued by SH% in 2nd half.

Pouliot is in need of

the lucic not performing narritive is inaccurate.
he has delivered everthing asked!
Physical
Genrating at his normal pace.
Leader.
Another classic hysterical junior high Girl narative!

This needed to be called out!

speeds

Chachi: Sure, I get that it would be nice to have that extra spot on the protected list and if his crappy play continues it might be plausible that Vegas would pass on him, but how do you convince Lucic of that? It is fun to discuss these things hypothetically, but when you take into consideration that these players are human beings these scenarios become ludicrous.

What’s ludicrous about actually asking him? I agree, he may well say no.

npanciroli

The Oilers D looked lost last night without Larsson, wonder how much he calms them down as a group.