OILERS WAIVE TO BUY OUT POULIOT

by Lowetide

My Mom (who I miss terribly) had a few habits that drove me crazy. One of them was her maddening ability to hold back fantastic, mind blowing pieces of information for long periods and then wrap them in boring, everyday conversation. Here is an example that actually occurred:

  • Phone rings.
  • Me: “Hello?”
  • Mom: “Hi Honey.”
  • Me: “Hey Mom, I was thinking about you today. We haven’t talked all week!”
  • Mom: “Well, I was going to call you last night but I was just too tired.”
  • Me: “That’s okay.”
  • Mom: “No, I should have, I called your brother and should have called you.”
  • Me: “Mom, don’t worry about it.”
  • Mom: “I feel bad. I called your brother and didn’t call you.”
  • Me: (trying to move things along) “Mom, why were you tired?”
  • Mom: “Well, it was such a long day yesterday.”
  • Me: “Why?”
  • Mom: “The bus ride was so long.”
  • Me: “What bus ride?”
  • Mom: (slightly irritated) “The bus ride from Lloydminster and back.”
  • Me: (slightly irritated) “Why were you in Lloydminster?”
  • Mom: (now quite irritated and allowing a moment between words) “I was at your Uncle Del’s funeral!”
  • Me: (excited) “UNCLE DEL IS DEAD??!!?!”
  • Mom: (now quite upset) “Yes, I told you about it!”
  • Me: (loud and angry) “NO YOU DIDN’T!”
  • Mom: “Oh, I was sure I did. Maybe I told your brother.”

Honestly. Wonderful wonderful Mom. There were times. If you’re an Oilers fan, this week has kind of been like that. Each piece of information is both not terribly helpful and mildly irritating and could end up with Uncle Del dead and someone on a long bus ride.

Important to separate Pouliot’s season from his previous established level of ability. He was an effective two-way winger, before his poor season. The only question from my point of view is can he get back to previous level? My answer is yes, Peter Chiarelli’s answer is $4 million stones is $4 million stones.

The wonder for me is what might have been. I suggest this often, and the response is “you can’t reward Pouliot by putting him on 97’s line!” but what if it gave your team the kind of depth needed to win?

  • Pouliot with McDavid (2.94/60 5×5; 53.6 percent Corsi for percentage)
  • McDavid with Pouliot (3.36/60 5×5; same Corsi 5×5).

It’s all over now, but I think this player can help a team. I often get a lot of resistance when defending Pouliot and Mark Fayne, but let’s see this play out. If Pouliot can’t find a new NHL home perhaps it is a sign that he is no longer able to play in the NHL. If he does land somewhere and have success, I hope you’ll agree that today’s move was purely cap driven and that the player himself has real value. That’s how I see this transaction.

CURRENT ASSUMED ROSTER

  • I’ve used the low bar on bonuses for the final number and added in Joe Gambardella as the roster replacement.
  • Peter Chiarelli may be making room for a $9.5 million Leon Draisaitl here.
  • He may also have a trade or free-agent signing to make July 1.
  • We may have theories but it’s absolutely unclear at this time. Those connected to management are implying free agency isn’t going to be a big deal and that may well be true. I think it is wise to assume PC is probably not placing all of his cards on the table and that a counter trey could be at work currently. Trust, but verify. And don’t get on the bus to Lloydminster!

Oilers development camp goes next week and the roster has been announced. At least one name is missing from the rumored group, with a bunch of names we didn’t know about. Here are the players who are coming that may be unfamiliar:

  • G Miroslav Svoboda: Drafted but not signed by Edmonton, this may be his last visit. Or maybe they sign him later.
  • LD Mark Auk. He was at rookie camp a year ago, Michigan Tech LHD, he is 22.
  • RD Sahvan Khaira: Huge defender (and Jujhar’s brother) went 70gp, 1-16-17 for the Swift Current Broncos. Has one more year in junior.
  • L Jake Lucchini: Undersized winger scored 11 goals for Michigan Tech, he is 22.
  • LC Brandon Saigeon: Hamilton Bulldogs (OHL) forward is 19 and scored 49 points in 66 games this past season.
  • RC Steve Owre: WHL skill center is now finished in junior and at 21 this is a nice opportunity (especially if it turns into a rookie camp invite).  88 points in 71 games.
  • RC Ethan Szypula: One of the more promising names on this year’s invite list, he went 11-36-47 in 64 games for Owen Sound (OHL). Brock Otten: Szypula is not a big guy (5’11, 170ish), but he plays a big man’s game.
  • RC Tyson McLellan: Todd’s son is undersized and his U. Denver numbers (43gp, 5-7-12) are fine for a freshman (he played and that’s important).
  • C Kevin Klima: Small skill center is 20 years old and scored 36 points in two QMJHL stops this season. He has a twin brother you’ll read about in a second and they are both Petr’s boys.
  • R Kelly Klima: Small skill winger is 20 years old and scored 49 points while with two teams in the QMJHL this year. Petr Klima did play in Edmonton the year these kids were born.
  • R Davis Koch: Edmonton Oil Kings winger has improved each season (he is 19) and scored at almost a point-per-game this year. Should be one of the better skill forwards.
  • R William Graber: He is 21, 6.03 and had 19 points in 29 games at Dartmouth as a freshman. An older prospect, interesting resume.
  • R Chad Butcher: Small winger (5.10, 172) was a Penticton invite one year ago. Speed main weapon.

We’ll discuss the Oilers prospects who are invited as part of tomorrow morning’s blog.

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leadfarmer

I’m sure someone is going to complain about the legacy invites but I don’t mind them.

The Trade Guy

Your convo with your mom reminds me of my wife and I read it to her and she said. “Oh I love her!”

I thought Benoit would bounce back this year. I don’t know what PC is building up to but and I’m scared I won’t like it.

Scungilli Slushy

Sorry to go off topic,again, but nice write up Bruce on Semenko.

OriginalPouzar

Svoboda? Awesome, I never thought we’d see him in North America.

Didn’t we lose his rights for not being able to sign him within 2 years?

Scungilli Slushy

As for Pouliot, Marleau? I’d love to see it, for a year.

leadfarmer

The Trade Guy:
Your convo with your mom reminds me of my wife and I read it to her and she said. “Oh I love her!”

I thought Benoit would bounce back this year. I don’t know what PC is building up to but and I’m scared I won’t like it.

He’s up to something and no one knows what it is. He does a good job keeping info inside the house and any rumor is just pure speculation.

I can’t believe no one wanted Pou at half price. He can wheel

Rondo

This is a great conversation with Mom.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lO_8qPpT8GE

Scungilli Slushy

I don’t mind that they hold players accountable. It’s much better for team culture and gets everyone’s head in the right space. Do what’s asked and do it well or next man up. Life is harsh.

John Chambers

Far be it from me to doubt Chia’s logic as admittedly I’m a fan of his work, but …
1) Russell is a bit of an expensive luxury, and although the contract is only actually a 3-year one, it’s really going to pinch in years 2 and 3. I would’ve gone the David Schlemko route as a cheap stop-gap.
2) Couldn’t the team have tried to make use of Pouliot this year, even in a utility role? Perhaps with only a year left on his contract the Oilers could’ve traded him with 1/2 salary retained.

In the end the Oilers have to pay Pouliot, Korpikoski, and possibly Fayne to not play hockey this year while covering an overage from acquiring Desharnais.

That’s a lot of dead cap (and live) when we need space the most.

N64

Jaromir Jagr @68Jagr

Everywhere I look,I read:all FA getting calls from10-12teams. Me0 calls.On the contrary,I’m trying to call them,and no ones picking up.????

The photos he used are half of the joke:

https://mobile.twitter.com/68Jagr/status/880561778068930560

N64

Thought Fayne would be gone as it only adds a year vs 2 added to Pou.

Maybe Fayne will be in the lineup next year before or after the first injury.

blainer

Chia is clearing the deck to sign Boyle…

blainer

For the record I was anti Russell especially with all of the fancy stats against him but his play in the playoffs was stellar IMO.

Actually very happy we signed him. . he will be gone by year three but I am very happy to have here now.

I expect a vet left D signing late summer… any ideas who that will be folks ?

blainer:
Chia is clearing the deck to sign Boyle…

I think he is clearing the deck to make sure he can spend whatever it takes (9.799) to match Drai offersheets below the four first round picks threshold?

Greg

I can’t figure out which name is missing from the rookie camp list.

Pouzar

Mike Commodore‏Verified account @commie22 48s48 seconds ago
More
The Justin Williams sweepstakes is down to 3 teams…The Calgary Flames. The Edmonton Oilers. The Nashville Predators. #Insiderr

N64

The buyout period is great. It’s the time that every team with dead cap space July 1 contracts can buy more bullets to play Canada Day roulette again.

LMHF#1

Pouzar:
Mike Commodore‏Verified account @commie2248s48 seconds ago
MoreThe Justin Williams sweepstakes is down to 3 teams…The Calgary Flames. The Edmonton Oilers. The Nashville Predators. #Insiderr

Hope he’s right and the term is short.

Scungilli Slushy

blainer:
Chia is clearing the deck to sign Boyle…

I hope not. He is a 4th liner, not what they need with all the rookie wingers.

Andy Dufresne

Pouliot buy out

1) Pouliot was shopped at length. His value around the leaque is lower than the cost of buying him out
2) Coach didnt much care for him
3) When you are creating a CULTURE of winning its easier to move on from players who dont absolutely fit the system moving forward
4) Youve got at least one player in house ready to take his spot on the roster at less than $1 million for 2017-18
5) Youve got to have cap space to protect against an offer sheet on Draisaitl
6) If you dont buy him out this year and he suffers a late season injury, youre screwed. Cant buy out an injured player
7) You need cap space this year to either bargain hunt late into free agency or be a buyer at the trade deadline 2018

PLEASE let the Justin Williams rumour be true. $3.25 million or less for 1 year. I take him over Pouliot every day of the week and twice on Sundays.

Scungilli Slushy

LMHF#1: Hope he’s right and the term is short.

Agreed. They need offensive and quality to show the young guys the right way. Lucic is not a scoring winger, his role is different. Play two ways, play the boards, score against top comp.

blainer

NYCOIL “Gentleman Backpacker”: I think he is clearing the deck to make sure he can spend whatever it takes (9.799) to match Drai offersheets below the four first round picks threshold?

Yes I agree with that too. He is sending multiple messages. My spidey senses are telling me though we are signing someone July 1.

Hope it is a good faceoff guy.

blainer

Scungilli Slushy: I hope not. He is a 4th liner, not what they need with all the rookie wingers.

I get where you are coming from but there really isn’t anyone available who can win a draw at a reasonable price. Unless I’m missing someone and that is possible.

Watched him play in Tampa this past year and to me he was a much better skater than I was expecting.

Pouzar

Bob McKenzie‏Verified account @TSNBobMcKenzie 18s19 seconds ago
More
CAR trades Eddie Lack, Ryan Murphy and 7th in 2019 to CGY for Keegan Kanzig and 6th in 2019. CAR retains 50 per cent salary on Lack.

russ99

N64:
Thought Fayne would be gone as it only adds a year vs 2 added to Pou.

Maybe Fayne will be in the lineup next year before or after the first injury.

Next summer is where the cap room really really matters.

Fayne has one year left, no reason to stretch that to two. Both Fayne’s contract and Korpikoski’s buyout end after this season, a moderate bump to use to help pay for Connor and Leon or pay for a bridge deal for one of our RFAs.

Pouliot didn’t save much burying in the minors, and he had 2 years left, with significant buyout savings. Since nobody took a flyer it was an obvious move.

Rondo

Bob McKenzie‏Verified account @TSNBobMcKenzie 31s31 seconds ago
More
CAR trades Eddie Lack, Ryan Murphy and 7th in 2019 to CGY for Keegan Kanzig and 6th in 2019. CAR retains 50 per cent salary on Lack.

I thought Oilers should of traded for Eddie Lack at 1/2 salary

Alpine

The culture argument is always so bizarre to me. Obviously Pouliots lack of whatever of the fuck people care about didn’t get in the way of the Oilers making the playoffs. It’s almost like dressing room dynamics are completely overrated or something. If these guys are that fragile that they need other players shipped out so they can improve as a team then I don’t fucking know anymore. This is probably among one of the dumbest talking points in hockey.

russ99

Alpine:
The culture argument is always so bizarre to me. Obviously Pouliots lack of whatever of the fuck people care about didn’t get in the way of the Oilers making the playoffs. It’s almost like dressing room dynamics are completely overrated or something. If these guys are that fragile that they need other players shipped out so they can improve as a team then I don’t fucking know anymore. This is probably among one of the dumbest talking points in hockey.

Yeah, especially since if has a lot more to do with moving out the old GMs guys who don’t fit anymore at their contract amounts and their results than any issue with the room.

Scungilli Slushy

blainer: I get where you are coming from but there really isn’t anyone available who can win a draw at a reasonable price. Unless I’m missing someone and that is possible.

Watched him play in Tampa this past year and to me he was a much better skater than I was expecting.

You might be right, I’d rather they pressure the existing centres to get it together. Most players take time to develop in faceoffs, nearly all. Time for big boy pants for them, or as we’ve seen they’ll be moved. Centres that don’t score 100 points have to be good overall.

Andy Dufresne

Lowetide,

I actually agree with you that Pouliot. should have value for some team…2-way game, penalty kill, move up and down the roster…..But the cards were clearly stacked against him in Edmonton.

In house replacement is Caguilia but I get that its a down grade on penalty kill and experience.

My experience tells me that someone tends to step up when real opportunity is presented So Cagulia and Khara and Slepyshev all have an opportunity here.

But yes…there will be a learning curve… and yes …..I’d rather have Patrick Marleau 🙂

Scungilli Slushy

Alpine:
The culture argument is always so bizarre to me. Obviously Pouliots lack of whatever of the fuck people care about didn’t get in the way of the Oilers making the playoffs. It’s almost like dressing room dynamics are completely overrated or something. If these guys are that fragile that they need other players shipped out so they can improve as a team then I don’t fucking know anymore. This is probably among one of the dumbest talking points in hockey.

Ever worked in a messed up environment? They’re just guys doing a job at the end of the day, albeit for stupid amounts of money. Everybody in, everybody on the same page is completely necessary to win in pro team sports IMO

fifthcartel

If this isn’t a precursor to adding a veteran forward/defensemen then it’s just another weak move in a disappointing offseason.

blainer

I am liking this Justin Williams talk .. hopefully on a one year deal. His faceoff numbers were north of 54% last year and he is a RT shot.

Make it happen Chia..

Scungilli Slushy

Pouzar:
Bob McKenzie‏Verified account @TSNBobMcKenzie18s19 seconds ago
MoreCAR trades Eddie Lack, Ryan Murphy and 7th in 2019 to CGY for Keegan Kanzig and 6th in 2019. CAR retains 50 per cent salary on Lack.

Hmmm, clearing cap.

Ryan Murphy and Lack do not change fLames much before it starts. Good for them picking up salary dumps and struggling players; reminds me of the Oilers a few years ago.

blainer

Pouzar:
Mike Commodore‏Verified account @commie2248s48 seconds ago
MoreThe Justin Williams sweepstakes is down to 3 teams…The Calgary Flames. The Edmonton Oilers. The Nashville Predators. #Insiderr

Jeebus don’t let it be the Flames..

theDjdj

They flushed the Pou

Scungilli Slushy

fifthcartel:
If this isn’t a precursor to adding a veteran forward/defensemen then it’s just another weak move in a disappointing offseason.

Info says Pouliot didn’t buy in. That cannot happen on a team with so many young players, wrong message. Vets are supposed to lead the way, that’s the wrong way, team first.

stush18

Scungilli Slushy: Ever worked in a messed up environment? They’re just guys doing a job at the end of the day, albeit for stupid amounts of money. Everybody in, everybody on the same page is completely necessary to win in pro team sports IMO

I agree 100%

It’s frustrating working your bag off when someone else is doing the bare minimum.

Not saying this was pouliot, I’m just saying culture is a thing, especially with a group of people that live together for 250 days of the year.

Scungilli Slushy

Scungilli Slushy: Hmmm, clearing cap.

Ryan Murphy and Lack do not change fLames much before it starts. Good for them picking up salary dumps and struggling players; reminds me of the Oilers a few years ago.

And now I guess with Strome. But the Oilers have gotten far better at adding helpful players.

theDjdj

Alpine:
The culture argument is always so bizarre to me. Obviously Pouliots lack of whatever of the fuck people care about didn’t get in the way of the Oilers making the playoffs. It’s almost like dressing room dynamics are completely overrated or something. If these guys are that fragile that they need other players shipped out so they can improve as a team then I don’t fucking know anymore. This is probably among one of the dumbest talking points in hockey.

Not really. People get moved on from organisations the world over for being negative to a work culture. I’m not saying Pouliot was but sports is not unique in making decisions based on team dynamics.

Rondo

Scungilli Slushy,

Lack is a good goalie, I know things didn’t work out in Carolina but he was very good in Vancouver. I hope Oilers have a back-up goalie.

VOR

Anybody want to guess what Carolina’s is planning? Are they just stripping the team down to bare bones to save money or are they about to spend a bunch of money in free agency?

Andy Dufresne

Scungilli Slushy,

Two things:

1) you can be a hard worker and a good person and still not be a fit for the culture of some organization

2) While I get what youre saying, words are tricky. When we talk about “buy in” …..I think that in Ebbs and Pouliots cases I can almost garauntee you they wanted to buy in….but sometimes when youve had success doing things a certain way for several years its VERY hard to adapt to a new way of thinking and a different way of doing things. And then theres values…and what if the thinigs that made you successful are not the things that the boss/coach values….doesnt make you a bad person or unfit to play the game…just unfit to play in the current organization.

Rondo

VOR,

They are a team with great young D’s.

ashley

On one hand I don’t understand defending Pou and Fayne to the grave as they have done nothing to earn that, but on the other hand, I think I do.

These were fancy stats darlings identified by the blog community. Their signings were cause for much celebration on the mathy blogs. Yet I doubt that either of them will be in the NHL next year, and Fayne wasn’t even this past year.

This is a sincere indictment of advanced stats ability to identify useful players. This is not to say that advanced stats don’t have value. This is more to say that they need a lot of context.

I suspect MacT gave too much weight to advanced stats in these signings. Perhaps he was in consultation with an advanced stats blogger since one was hired as an employee shortly thereafter. They thought they had found hockey’s secret holy grail through an overconfident stats guru. Who hasn’t seen moneyball?

If you believe in advanced stats as a great tool to cut through the analysis and identify diamonds that others have passed over, then you have to defend the signing of Pou and Fayne. Otherwise, you would fall back to the place that most NHL management teams have which is: Advanced stats are a tool requiring context like any other stat, and do not replace or even surpass the value of professional scouting viewing and analysis.

Saw him good still rules the roost, perhaps even moreso than only three short years ago.

Scungilli Slushy

Rondo:
Scungilli Slushy,

Lack is a good goalie, I know things didn’t work out in Carolinabut he was very good in Vancouver. I hope Oilershave a back-up goalie.

Broissoit’s numbers are a lot better, I think he was .928 and Lack was .902.

Alpine

Scungilli Slushy: Ever worked in a messed up environment? They’re just guys doing a job at the end of the day, albeit for stupid amounts of money. Everybody in, everybody on the same page is completely necessary to win in pro team sports IMO

Yeah I have. The Oilers dressing room isn’t a messed up environment with or without Pouliot.

Pescador

theDjdj: Not really. People get moved on from organisations the world over for being negative to a work culture. I’m not saying Pouliot was but sports is not unique in making decisions based on team dynamics.

True but that usually doesn’t accompany a large buyout the F’s up your cap situation while your try to manage the salary of a generational talent. ha

Scungilli Slushy

Andy Dufresne:
Scungilli Slushy,

Two things:

1) you can be a hard worker and a good person and still not be a fit for the culture of some organization

2) While I get what youre saying, words are tricky. When we talk about “buy in” …..I think that in Ebbs and Pouliots cases I can almost garauntee you they wanted to buy in….but sometimes when youve had success doing things a certain way for several years its VERY hard to adapt to a new way of thinking and a different way of doing things. And then theres values…and what if the thinigs that made you sucessful are not the things that the boss/coach values….

True, but you have to do what the boss says and reports have Pou at odds with the coaches, which is more feasible if you are scoring. Sports is different than regular life in that the window is shorter, it’s not a life time occupation in the arena for players. Its always been that way and sometimes the team is wrong, I don’t think it’s clear in this case.