BALANCE

by Lowetide

I received an excellent email from Tempest the other day, it’s three-pronged and worth at least three posts. The area I would like to talk about today is balance, and want to begin with three paragraphs sent me the other day.

Balance of Positions

  • This is the topic you’re talking about most of the time when you’re writing about balance on the blog. Having the correct amount of players to fill a roster properly, with enough depth to cover injuries. There’s definite value in not requiring players to play out of position.

Balance of Playing Styles

  • This covers off the importance of having different types of players on the team. As fun as it would be to fill the team with explosive offensive talents, you still need players that can penalty kill. There are players that can do both and in a perfect world you would fill your team with as many of those types of players as possible (see: Team Canada at the Olympics), but for all intents and purposes in the NHL you will likely have to settle for some guys that do one better than the other.

Balance of Personalities

  • I work in an office where personalities are probably more important than talent. You can be the smartest person in the room, but if you have the personality of wet cardboard we’re going to struggle working together. Along the same vein, if we hire too many type-A personalities we’re going to have all sorts of problems from in-fighting to alienation of others. I’d much rather work with diverse group of people that get along with each other. That’s how we build our team, I can only guess that it’s an important factor when building a hockey team as well.

The third item is the one I’d like to spend a few minutes with this morning, because we cover the first two a lot on this blog. Tempest’s paragraph on personalities makes a lot of sense, and as someone who has worked in the same industry for 37 years I read it nodding my head over and over. One of the reasons I generally ignore discussing this area is there’s no way to know what happens behind a closed door. I can tell you what I think, but that’s not really knowledge. I read (on this blog and elsewhere) many posts claiming to know, but I don’t think there’s any way to actually know what goes on. I will guess that Connor McDavid is pleased with Ryan Strome’s arrival, that the room likes Eric Gryba and that Patrick Maroon is more likely to be re-signed than the other UFA’s next summer. That’s all based on guesswork and things I’ve heard (and you’ve heard the same things, maybe more). Is there value in knowing these things? Yes! Do we have the access to know? No. Not at all. It’s a difficult part of the conversation to have.

Which leads to my question: Do you believe the Edmonton Oilers traded Taylor Hall, at least in part, because of his A personality? Do you think the Oilers traded him to New Jersey to make the transition to McDavid as leader easier? My answer: I wouldn’t hazard a guess. Makes sense as a theory but there’s simply no way to make an educated guess.

PROJECTED ROSTER 2017-18

THINGS THAT MAKE YOU GO HMMM.

We’ve talked about this over the last few weeks, what Peter Chiarelli might be contemplating with those $5 million projected dollars of leftover cap room with Leon Draisaitl signed to $8 million. We talked about it yesterday, and I mentioned at that time (and believe now) there could be a trade. Now, if you read this blog, you know that July through June is ‘three-for-one trade’ season around here. Doubt that happens, but there does appear to be unfinished business at more than one NHL outpost. It seems there are other teams contemplating something large late July or early August.

  • Elliotte Friedman: “I get the impression that you’ve got Marc Bergevin sitting here with a lot of cap space and I think he’s sitting on something, or some ideas. And I’m not necessarily saying that he’s going to do something big, but I think he’s dreaming big.”
  • Source

Trade? I think so. Edmonton dealing with Montreal? Jeff Petry? Alex Galchenyuk? Brendan Gallagher? Montreal dealing with Edmonton? Nuge? Man, I don’t see it. I do believe the Oilers and Habs have room to wheel, if not with each other then elsewhere. Will they?

RUNNING RE

I will have posted most of the forwards by this time next week and will tackle the defensemen and goalies in August. A big trade now would screw over the RE numbers, so be warned that some of these totals would change in that case. Sorry for the unreadable graph, it looked good at midnight. Thanks to Digger 50 for the idea.

MAPLE LEAFS VERSUS OILERS

Michael Augello of The Sporting News has an interesting article out this week comparing the Toronto rebuild to the Oilers. The Maple Leafs young trio of brilliance (Auston Matthews, Mitch Marner and William Nylander) grab all the headlines—and rightly so—but there are really good players across this roster. I specifically value Nazem Kadri, Leo Komarov and defensemen like Jake Gardiner, Morgan Reilly and Nikita Zaitsev. Toronto also has some nice secondary talents like Martin Marincin, Connor Carrick, Connor Brown, Zach Hyman and Josh Leivo. I thought JVR and or Tyler Bozak would have been sent away for a RHD this summer but Lou is keeping his powder dry. Maybe they plan to fast track Timothy Liljegren (what a great pick at No. 17, I had him No. 5 overall) or maybe they’ll just be patient. If you’re Lou, getting a Stanley during Matthews entry-level deal is a thing worth pushing for, wonder how this turns out.

BALANCE

I have the photo. Had to check, it’s been so long since I found it thought maybe it had disappeared into the ether. As things stand today, I don’t think you’ll see the balance photo at the end of August (my plan has always been to publish as part of an RE final flourish) but who knows what tomorrow brings.

  • Goaltending: Brilliant starter, unproven backup
  • Defense: The young cluster (Klefbom, Larsson, Nurse, Benning) has brilliant potential and the veterans (Sekera, Russell, Gryba) have given the kids room enough to grow.
  • Forwards: Connor McDavid floats all boats and Leon Draisaitl may be able to drive his own line (we don’t know what we don’t know). Ryan Nugent-Hopkins could be a key performer in this group and strong seasons from Patrick Maroon and Milan Lucic are vital. The addition of  Jussi Jokinen was inspired, need another.

How close is this team to balance? I’ll say closer than any team since 2005-06 fall, that team lacking only a goaltender worthy of the roster in front of him.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

Friiiday, we’re on the air at 10, TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Steve Lansky, BigMouthSports. Our weekly feature guest is in Edmonton, we’re going to hold onto him for two segments. We’ll chat Oilers Stanley horizon, memories, the sports television industry and his fantastic website.
  • Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. A big night at Commonwealth.
  • Derek Taylor, TSN. What a football game last night. Blue Bombers!
  • Dave Jamieson, TSN1260. Dave chats about the historic aspect of this evening’s game.

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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smellyglove

Brilliant post, as usual LT. Agreed on it all.

We’ll never ever know who gets along with who, and who gets exiled. No sense in even conjecturing.

Also, LT and other wise posters — I would be keen to hear from you which NHL squads you feel do have ‘balance’. And, is balance necessary to win a cup?

We are perpetually seeking the mythical B-word, but I wonder if getting into the playoffs and continuing with health, luck, and experience (in that order) trumps the ‘perfectly constructed’ team.

speeds

LT (or anyone):

MTL has the cap room, and picks, and reportedly tried to trade for Draisaitl once already. Long term, Plekanec falls off the cap next summer, potentially clearing more room.

Do you see them as a team potentially looking at a Draisaitl offer sheet? And if so, what would your take be as to why they haven’t done it already (assuming Draisaitl would be willing to sign one)?

dustrock

There was a rumor that Draisaitl had turned down a couple of offer sheets, I think they said around $7m or so.

We never get to hear about the sheets that were offered and rejected.

Given that Draisaitl just got a taste of the Conference Semis and performed exceedingly well under the spotlight, and seems to be part of a young core that enjoys hanging out, you’d have to think it would be a SIGNIFICANT overpay by another team to tempt him.

Realistically, where is he going to have it better? There’s not many teams who could pay him enough and yet still be in the hunt for Lord Stanley.

McDavid floats all boats, realizes dreams, turns water into wine.

smellyglove

speeds,

If Leon signs an OS with the Habs, clearly a team in the decline, and for an amount close to what the Oilers would offer, I would perpetually curse the Big German. The team that drafted him, developed him, treated him well, gave him a taste of success early into his career. That’s got to be worth something.

Kinger_Oil.redux

– Great post LT!. Three years ago, I posted in here talking to my smart hockey guy, who we would all know. He and talk Hockey from time to time, and I love hearing his insight as an attuned former player, and the dynamics you allude to that he talks about. Perception is reality, in hockey, just as it is in politics or work environment

– His solution to improve the team, in am email to me was “Trade Hall”. When I reported that here, it was dismissed as poppy-cock, I was a liar, or that guy didn’t know what he was talking about.

– What my guy was saying was all the thing you alluded to: personality type, leadership, perception, fitting in, etc. Another hockey guy told me that he was talking to MacT, who told him that Kruger “isn’t my guy” (i.e. he didn’t hire him) These things matter. I reported that as well.

– For sure, no one can argue in my opinion that while the Hall trade was partly because he was the best player that got the team the best RHD, it was also because of the perception in hockey circles (including EDM once they got real management) of the “trade Hall” comment.

– Don’t accuse me of saying I said that Hall was a cancer, or a bad character, etc: there is a “code” amongst Hockey players (that only Sean Avery has broke). Players, ex-players don’t talk specifically about their peers outside of the locker-room

– So we will never know, but this was a hockey trade, and a hockey trade is more than the fancy stats coming in and out. It just is.

– You are right LT we can never know, so its difficult to fully understand, but part of the equation , and to pretend or allude otherwise is not giving a fullsome analysis IMO…

Oddspell

I look at Montreal-Edmonton and I can’t see anything that makes sense given Bergevin’s position. I can’t see any player the Oilers would trade to Montreal for any player or combination that would result in Montreal needing so much cap space.

That said, if we’re just talking about Montreal trade targets, Andrew Shaw seems like a good fit at 3C. Wish he was a bit cheaper though.

N64

dustrock: There was a rumor that Draisaitl had turned down a couple of offer sheets, I think they said around $7m or so

The 7×7 os rumor seemed very odd. Why would Drai sign that? Any GM that got him to sign that would be owed future considerations from Chia!

N64

smellyglove: If Leon signs an OS with the Habs, clearly a team in the decline, and for an amount close to what the Oilers would offer, I would perpetually curse the Big German.

No problem if someone offers a 7 year deal for close to the Oil offer. That’s doing the Oil a solid. Which is why a OS deal straight to UFA or a 1 year high priced deal to increase the sample size and the demand are 29’s real leverage.

dustrock

LT – on personalities, I know we don’t want to get into rumor mongering, but it seems that Hall has historically been passed over by the Canadian teams, despite the fact that he’s one of the best LW in the game.

Maybe it’s a perceived lack of two-way play, but sometimes the selections of guys picked over him have been puzzling and you start to wonder how much it is this personality thing.

There also have been comments by vets like Ference and Perron about practice habits and impliedly a lack of professionalism. Plus WaterBottleGate with Eakins, etc.

Hall simply may not have been the “leader” they wanted him to be, and after years in the Pit, I’m not sure he could pick up the rest of the team and get out of the Pit.

“I was in the Pit, you were in the Pit, we were all in the Piiiiit”. (Parks & Rec)

The organization thought enough of him that they had McDavid stay with him during his rookie season, which in my mind shows really what they thought of Hall.

On the other hand, maybe they thought McDavid was too polite and deferential to grab the bull by the horns if Hall, the older and more experienced player, was there.

Every time we talk about personalities, I love to bring up the Blackhawks.

Did Toews win Cups because he’s a great leader, or is Toews a great leader because he won Cups?

Are Patrick Kane’s off-ice antics a huge distraction for the organization, or does it not matter because they’re winning?

I’m pretty curious to see what happens with Kane as the Hawks start to decline.

jm363561

LT, I have been enjoying this blog for around five years now and I have never seen such a masochistic streak in your posts. A few days ago we revisited the whole Hall / Larsson deal with a predictably explosive response.

Now we have as Discussion Item 1 – Do you believe the Edmonton Oilers traded Taylor Hall, at least in part, because of his A personality? IMHO I believe it made the decision easier for Chia and, based on no evidence whatsoever, it affected the value he was able get for Hall.

Of course a lot depends on your definition of A personality. I see Looch as an A personality (Sid, Getzlaf, Toews, would be other fantastic examples) – a leader in the best sense of the word. I did not see Hall this way – he was more Kane than Toews. (Not that there’s anything wrong with that).

speeds

smellyglove:
speeds,

If Leon signs an OS with the Habs, clearly a team in the decline, and for an amount close to what the Oilers would offer, I would perpetually curse the Big German. The team that drafted him, developed him, treated him well, gave him a taste of success early into his career. That’s got to be worth something.

If it’s close, the Oilers will just match.

Sakic signed an offer sheet with the Rangers, now he’s the GM. I think for most people, they would eventually get over it.

speeds

Lowetide: I almost wrote about the Kessell to Toronto deal this morning, may do it tomorrow. That became a trade with OS hanging over it. Maybe something similar here?

What would a trade look like – I don’t think it would be just picks if the Oilers end up making a trade?

What are you thinking? Drouin or Galchenyuk + picks/prospects/???

season not played

Kinger_Oil.redux,

When they won the McDavid lottery I remember telling my buddy I would blow it up and reconstruct the team properly around McDavid.

Probably why I am such a fan of Chiarellis work.

TO10801

I do wish we had more insight into the personality aspect of building a team. When you look at the Hall trade it would make sense if the oilers wanted to move out a strong personality to allow their young superstar to take over the leadership of the team. Then you bring in a quieter Larsson and Lucic, who understands McDavid is the guy on the team. From NJs perspective they don’t have a young player with strong leadership, so you add Hall. It definitely appears that constructing a team with the right personalities is something GMs consider.

Also LT, I’m not all that opposed to having a lot of cap space heading into the season. This team cannot afford to have overages, as 850K (this years overage) is enough for one player. Having the flexibility will allow PC to add as much as he can when he knows who is likely to earn what bonuses. For example, if the bonuses are in check and you can add the Sedins or James Neal and Mike Green at the deadline, is that not worth making sure you have the space at the deadline?

leadfarmer

Best way to bury RE is to hide them behind a baby blue background. My retinas spontaneously combusted

meanashell11

The Hall trade was a hockey trade, you did not need to move him because of personality or make room for McDavid. Gretz and Messier were fine together. All these type A’s seem to get with the program during the olympics.

Jaxon

Montreal and other trade targets:

MTL
seems like one of the best fits out there for both teams. Gallagher ($3.75M x 4) (from Edmonton) in MTL is a good fit, they need a #1,#2C and they have cap space to take on Nuge’s contract. Gallagher would be a great fit with his cheap contract for next 4 years, his volume shooting, need for a scoring RW, his gritty, pesky play, good speed and being from Edmonton. Near perfect fit.
MIN
would be a good fit as they have cap space and Nuge could end up as their 1st or 2nd line C. Coyle (3 x $3.2M) as a C/RW would be a great fit in Edmonton. He’s a Chiarelli-MacLellan type (big, tough, versatile CRW, scoring, shooting) and from Massachusetts so Chiarelli should be familiar with him. Koivu only has 1 year left and E Staal has 2, so Nuge could become their replacement and compete for a 1C job right off the bat (it should be a close competition).
CBJ
is a good fit, they have the cap space and Nuge would be their #1,#2 so Savard (4 x $4.25M) and Jenner (1 x $2.9M RFA) could be good options (Savard doesn’t save a lot of cap at 4.25M but he’d fell an important role). Jenner only has 1 year left but he is an RFA so still under control.
CAR
has numerous options in a trade for Nuge: Faulk (3 x $4.833M), Rask (5 x $4.0M), Van Riemsdyk (1 x $0.825M RFA) and Pesce (1 x $0.809M) all fill needs for Edmonton. CAR has the cap space and Nuge would fit in on one of the top 2 lines competing with J Staal and/or Rask (if he’s not involved in the trade). I tend to think acquiring Van Riesmdyk hints at maybe being open to trading Faulk or Pesce.
VAN
Gudbranson (1 x $3.5M UFA) is likely a deadline rental. His latest contract didn’t scream, “I want to stay here for a rebuild”, so Nuge is a huge overpay (unless they let Edmonton negotiate a new contract prior to trade). If not an earlier trade, then a deadline rental trade might work for a playoff run with the added benefit of being able to negotiate a new deal before he becomes a UFA next summer. Great 5-on-5 scoring last season albeit in a small sample size because of injury.
PHI
is also doubtful as they are pretty deep at C with Giroux, Couturier, Lehtera, Filpulla, and Nolan Patrick on the way, so Nuge won’t have much appeal for them, so Gudas (3 x $3.35M) is probably a no-go, although he’d be my number one target. He may have the highest value RD contract in the NHL. People don’t realize that he was one of the top primary points scorers at 5-on-5 last season. Has a reputation as a mean shutdown D.
DET
unfortunately, is in even worse cap hell than Edmonton, so the highly underrated and cheap Nick Jensen (2 x $0.812M UFA) won’t be possible. Also scored well at 5-on-5 primary pts last season in a top 4 role.
PIT
I also considered Nuge for Hagelin (2 x $4.0M) in PIT, they have the cap space but they need wingers not C, I don’t think they want to pay Nuge 6M as their 3rd C either, but Hagelin’s speed with McDavid could be pretty special.
ANA
Same goes for Silfverberg (2 x $3.75M) in ANA, not really a fit for them with their center depth.
NYI
Another Islanders trade: Nuge for Anders Lee (2 x 3.75M)? There may be some merit to that for both teams. Seems very unlikely, though. I think Nuge is a big overpay for Pulock, who hasn’t made fulltime roster yet. Mayfield may be a good gamble for way less than Nuge, maybe a late round pick?

leadfarmer

If Drai is asking for 9 per and even offer sheets are coming in at 7 per that should tell Drai about how crazy his request is.

Kinger_Oil.redux

season not played:
Kinger_Oil.redux,

When they won the McDavid lottery I remember telling my buddy I would blow it up and reconstruct the team properly around McDavid.

Probably why I am such a fan of Chiarellis work.

– Me too. The other truth about change in management regime is they will change personel

– I have no respect for MacT’s body of work as GM: he was not qualified, he was the coach of a loser AHL team, and the only job he gets in NHL is the OBC: the only GM in history to go from another teams Farm team to almost-directly GM of another team. He was also a gutless leader, stubborn, over his head, falling for Dallas, skpe-firing Kruger after telling him he was going to get him help, no clue how bad his team was, etc

– Now Chia comes in, Harvard educated, lawyer, toiled away and worked his way up management. He’s in the minority still of GM’s who are actually qualified beyond just being a former hockey player

– Chia, like any new manager, is wont to get rid of a lot of the old-boys regime.

– I’m sure Chia can’t stand that he’s got MacT + OBC sitting beside him, hovering around. But credit to Chia for not making noise, buying his time. He probably said what you said: “we need to get rid of the Austins”. OBC says no F-ing way, they are the dream.

– So after a year, Chia says: “we are getting rid of some Austins”. OBC said no, but Chia bought currency, and time He trades Hall.

– Now that Chia clearly won that trade (*intentional controversial remark*), he be like: “OK, I’m the man, I’m getting rid of more Steve Austins. Remember when I said we need to get rid of them”

– God I hope MacT can man up and just leave. He’s a parasite (like a lot on un-qualified ex-players picking up checks in organizations), and you know he’s just itching for mistakes, to leak stuff to the press and put the knife in Chia’s back: that’s what all old management does if they don’t get turfed by the new guys. I guess I’d collect a free check too if I was MacT, but I don’t respect it.

– By all accounts, he’s a great guy, and fun to hang around and smart, and redeemed himself big-time after some poor choices: I am not saying anything about the person. I’d gladly have some beers with him, talk shop, shoot the sh$t, and thank him for his incompetence resulting in CmD!

Pouzar

dustrock: Did Toews win Cups because he’s a great leader, or is Toews a great leader because he won Cups?

3 years ago I called out a well known WPG media member for saying he would start a franchise with Toews over Crosby. Tweeted him from time to time about it but he never wavered. Toews over Crosby. it wasn’t until Crosby won #3 that he changed his mind after I called him out again. Kudos to him for even replying but come on man……..

doritogrande

Can’t comment on hockey. Still high on Bombers final 1:40 from last night.

Carry on.

Jaxon

N64,

Yup, agreed. I’m probably restating the obvious here.

That is the sweet spot for the other team making the offer as they wouldn’t have to give up 4 1st round picks. But Leon likely wouldn’t sign it as it is lower than his likely offer from Edmonton (which most estimate $7.5 x 8 is the lowball offer and between $8 and $8.5 x 8 being the likely offer).

7×7=49
49/5=9.8
9.8 is below the threshold of 9.814935 for four 1st round picks.

Edmonton matches that for sure, as they will want four 1st rounders at least and that represents a discount on his expected contract

I know it is a technicality, but the offer will be minimum 7,010,667.86 x 7 yrs (entices Edmonton with 4 first round picks).

Then Edmonton might consider letting him go, but Draisaitl still won’t sign that. I think Edmonton will pay as high as 8.5 before considering letting him go for the 4 first rounders.

And It would be great if Leon got that offer as it would help Edmonton set his price at 7.25M for 7 years, which would be a steal.

notarealdoctor

Things that make you go hmm….when Adam Henrique was quoted after Hall was traded to Jersey that “he hasn’t changed a bit” since junior (I may be paraphrasing). If Hall was the same kid at 24 that he was at 19…

Bag of Pucks

We can’t and likely shouldn’t speculate on the ‘personality’ factors, but optically it would certainly make sense if the org had decided that going forward they wanted to put the C on Connor and have the leadership component originate from him, and were concerned how Hall might handle that perceived slight and/or the leadership dynamic going forward.

If anything, I think that speaks well of Hall in that he seemed clearly to be an A type that wanted to take the leadership reins and didn’t shy away from that responsibility, By contrast, RNH, Eberle and Yakupov should’ve theoretically been every bit as vital to the leadership of that particular core but from the limited pov we have, each of those individuals very much seemed more content to let others lead.

Finally, while we don’t have the inside intel to make informed decisions on the personalities, internal dynamics, compatibility, etc. we do have eyes and can draw some conclusions based on their actions. For me, I was a big Hall backer but was greatly disappointed in his actions vs Kassian in the Devils’ game in Rogers. Turtling after a deliberate attempt to injury is, imo, one of the most egregious sins in hockey and I felt showed a decided lack of character on Hall’s part. At his core, I think he’s a good guy that wants to win and was frustrated with how it all played out (why was I the guy traded to a cellar dweller in the swamps of Jersey?), but there’s no doubt he sometimes wears his emotions on his sleeve and/or fails to exercise prudent judgement (Kassian butt end, water bottle incident, Glenn Anderson anecdote, etc.).

For those reasons, I wish Hall well but it’s become easier over time to fully accept the trade and turn the page on his time with the Oil.

Braden28

This article about Netflix’s culture is very applicable to any sports team (and this conversation).

http://www.businessinsider.com/working-at-netflix-2016-8

– “Netflix is famous for its unique company culture, which does not tolerate either failing employees or brilliant jerks.”

– “Typically if even a single person doesn’t like you, it’s unlikely you’ll be hired.”

I have no doubt that Hall’s personality played a role in him being traded, just like I am positive that Lucic’s personality played a role in his signing. Personality and culture matter.

Scungilli Slushy

For a while I thought Hall was honest, I suppose a straight shooter who answered directly, not in cliches like so many do, even thoughtful.

But when I heard his comment

“The stink is still there,” Hall said Sunday as the Oilers cleaned out their stalls after yet another losing season.

“I’m very disappointed. Right now it’s hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, I’m not going to lie.”

I was quite surprised, and my first thought was he’s gone. Any time a player in any pro sport talks like that it’s usually over for them with that team. It is truly unprofessional to talk like that publicly, so negatively regardless of how you feel in the moment. It denigrates the team and everyone associated with it.

The worst thing about the comment is as the team’s best player he was most responsible for the lousy result IMO. The fact he’s been griping long after the trade is quite unusual and to me says a lot about attitude. There’s being honest and then there is being selfish and immature.

There were also spats that became public which should have stayed behind closed doors the prime example being Ference and the chirping on twitter. The team’s locker room issues were well known from many comments made by coaches and players current and former. This is not all on Hall or the players, the attitude started at the top, but the team’s results said it all and it needed to be fixed before improvement could happen.

Katz needs to be commended for doing or allowing the structural changes that made the culture change possible, even though he created the mess in letting his buddies run the show. I have no idea if simply winning the lottery prompted it or there was pressure we don’t about on him but it happened and fast.

The Oilers now are a very different personality as a team. Anybody who didn’t get 110% on board in play and talk (culture) has been moved out or down quickly. I believe this is exactly about building a culture and team first mentality that it takes to win in a sport more about team play than the other major NA sport.

Chiarelli being smart wasn’t / isn’t going to simply dump a valuable player because he doesn’t like what they do, so the deal was a hockey trade for sure and that was the key piece in it. Still, there is a clear pattern of what is acceptable emerging and the team is pulling in one direction for the first time in a long time, so I’d say it’s working.

flea

If the Oilers are going to make a blockbuster trade with Montreal that involves Nuge, I think they gotta try and get Gallagher and Shaw out of there.

Here is an attempt at the trade. I think the Oilers would probably have to add something else (a forward likely), or take something back from the Habs.

I might include Sleppy in this trade instead of Benson to make it work.

https://www.capfriendly.com/armchair-gm/team/433575

Georges

Here’s who the Penguins had on D for the playoffs:

Dumoulin (L) 21:59
Hainsey (L) 21:06
Maatta (L) 20:36
Schultz (R) 19:44
Daley (L) 19:06
Cole (L) 18:50

Depth

Streit (L)
Ruhwedel (R)

I’m curious. Would their playoff roster get a balance photo?

Georges

Here’s where teams with Taylor Hall, type A leader, finished in the standings:

2010-11 30
2011-12 29
2012-13 24
2013-14 28
2014-15 28
2015-16 29
2016-17 28

Taylor Hall may be a fine hockey player who’s had the bad luck of playing on very bad hockey teams. We could leave it at that.

But, that’s an extraordinary record for a type A leader, don’t you think? Don’t leaders wear the results of the organizations they lead? Or do they make excuses?

If you were a GM who traded for Taylor Hall’s leadership, what does it say about your leadership? Well, I suppose you got what you wanted.

106 and 106

Georges,

Their playoff roster would get a balance photo, not just because of their D, but because of the rest of the team.

1C – Best Player in the Game Crosby.
2C – Best Non Top 100 Player in the Game Malkin.
3rd Line – Freaking Phil the Playoff Thrill Kessel.

and their two goalies are both Stanley Cup Winning Champs.

—-
Looking at the Oilers Now:

1C – Close, 2C – Drai (maybe?), 3rd Line – PJV?

2 Goalies: ?

Too many ???? for balance.

Kinger_Oil.redux

Georges,

– Hey I’m still trying to digest LT’s assertion that the trade was lost on the day it occured, regardless of the performance of the players involved or teams going forward…

– Presumably this is his stance for all trades: “the winner/loser of each trade is determined on day of the trade, based on past-performance. It’s wrong to evaluate based on future performance”

– Hall might not have been part of the problem, but clearly he was part of the solution

season not played

Scungilli Slushy,

Georges,

Holy smokes guys, this is bordering on Blasphemy.

McSorley33

There were also spats that became public which should have stayed behind closed doors the prime example being Ference and the chirping on twitter. The team’s locker room issues were well known from many comments made by coaches and players current and former. This is not all on Hall or the players, the attitude started at the top, but the team’s results said it all and it needed to be fixed before improvement could happen.
******************************************************************************************************
Yep.

The number of Dead messengers shot in this forum is staggering.

Lots of vets ( yes, who were not good at hockey at the end ) with telling comments about the Oiler
locker room.

Then the list of Canadian coaches, etc…

I wonder what Drew Doughty meant when he commented on the Oilers success last year::

“Their top guys play defence now”

Georges

106 and 106,

On paper, did PIT have as good a defense as any of the teams they faced in the playoffs? No.

Did it matter? No.

They won by being extremely good at the F and G positions and passable at the D position.

Is that the blog’s idea of balance?

YKOil

With Montreal:

Don’t see much for smaller trades.

Mid-to-large you have Nuge for Gallagher (with Montreal throwing in a lot more given Nuge’s position, versatility and better scoring) as Gallagher is a legit RW who is cost controlled.

A Drai trade is problematic as Montreal is out of worthwhile trade bait. Sergachev is gone and Pacioretty plays left wing (we have a few of those) and only has two years left on that deal (if there was 4 or 5 years left…). While Montreal’s 2017 draft class was good, those are far-away players so they don’t help now.

Excepting Price, Montreal is far closer to a rebuild than it is to contending and there isn’t much there for the Oilers. Montreal has a lot of good players but not many that fill needs on the Oilers.

Woogie63

When I think Type A personalities, I think of Mark Messier, Jeremy Roenick, PK Subban, Milan Lucic. Taylor was the face of an organization in a small, but hockey crazy market. I thought he grew more comfortable in the role … but

After 6 years Taylor and the management could not drag the team into the play-offs. MacT, Tambo, long list of coaches and scouts were replaced, eventually you have to look at the players as the source of losing.

IMO PC was not trading a personality he was getting +20 minute a night RHD

Bank Shot

The first real seeds of doubt about the old rebuild core happened during the 2013 lockout.

Hall, Eberle, RNH, and Schultz all play in the AHL. They are probably 4 of the top 5 players in that league. Eberle ends up finishing 32nd in scoring at THE END OF THE SEASON despite playing 30 something games. Schultz finishes tied for first in D-scoring despite the same lack of games.

Those guys rip the league a new one in terms of scoring, but their team was around .500 or maybe a little worse the whole time they were there. The team’s record actually improved once those guys left.

We all know its a team game, but when you have 4 of the very best players in a league, your team should be nothing short of a powerhouse, and their team wasn’t. Excuses were made for the big four then, and many more afterwards.

The legend of Taylor Hall was always bigger than his actual contributions on the ice. He’s poor defensively and that’s the only reason he keeps getting left off team Canada in my mind. Any personality things are overblown IMO.

Oilers8833

TO10801,

Here is where I think that analytics and old school, the eye test, whatever you want to call it diverge. You can’t really quantify group locker room, personality dynamics, gritensity with a anaylitic stat. You know that there is some value there because NHL management has used this to some extent since hockey became a sport…..but how much exactly does this play into wins and losses.

I fall in the middle where I think analytics gives you a good idea of what players outcomes will be but, I do also think there is some value in the things that can’t be quantified by analytics. The Taylor Hall debate is so polarizing between the two factions because I think the arguement when it comes to him falls squarely between the two.

season not played

Bank Shot:
The first real seeds of doubt about the old rebuild core happened during the 2013 lockout.

Hall, Eberle, RNH, and Schultz all play in the AHL. They are probably 4 of the top 5 players in that league. Eberle ends up finishing 32nd in scoring at THE END OF THE SEASON despite playing 30 something games.Schultz finishes tied for first in D-scoring despite the same lack of games.

Those guys rip the league a new one in terms of scoring, but their team was around .500 or maybe a little worse the whole time they were there. The team’s record actually improved once those guys left.

We all know its a team game, but when you have 4 of the very best players in a league, your team should be nothing short of a powerhouse, and their team wasn’t. Excuses were made for the big four then, and many more afterwards.

The legend of Taylor Hall was always bigger than his actual contributions on the ice. He’s poor defensively and that’s the only reason he keeps getting left off team Canada in my mind. Any personality things are overblown IMO.

It was that the team got better after they left that was the tell for me.

Not a very big leap to determine there was something wrong with “the core”.

106 and 106

Georges,

The balance photo would be pre-season though; as injuries (Sekera) affect any lineup. That the D-Core could still be that good without Letang shows resilience.

Pescador

Hypothetically,
let’s say we did have access to trade discussions within the war room as well as live cameras & mics set up inside the dressing room.
Would that cause people to argue more or less?

106 and 106

season not played,

“Those guys rip the league a new one in terms of scoring, but their team was around .500 or maybe a little worse the whole time they were there. The team’s record actually improved once those guys left.”

I must have blocked this out of my memory.

Sweet half-full rose-tinted glasses.

Kinger_Oil.redux

Bank Shot,

– Thanks for the reminder of that, such a good point.

– It was bad luck that none of our picks were generation ones: oh wait: then we got McD:

– Conner Fu$king Mc Big Daddy Conner is on our team for the next 10 years BABY!

Ducey

We have been thru the Hall trade a million times.

I don’t think it had much to do with his sideburns. It had more to do with the fact the Oilers had no RHD. Talk about lack of balance.

Chia was going hard after a RHD who could play top pairing. He was obviously in on Subban (until CLB took Dubois) and tried to land Hamonic (Snow was looking for too much, and wound up getting too much, which likely was less than he was seeking in 2016), and brought in Demers for the Lucic tour. Demers walked away for whatever reason. There were rumours about Barrie. COL didn’t trade him and seems unable to trade anyone unless they get a massive overpay – to the point where they are in a showdown over Duchene, that is costing them other opportunities. They were also caught up in the Sakic v Roy battle for control.

We know too from rumours that Chia was looking to use the Nuge or Eberle as the collateral. Obviously, they were not worth enough to land a young, cost controlled, top pairing RHD.

People in these parts would have loved Hall, Dubois, Nurse (or maybe Leon) + for Subban at the time. In retrospect, having Subban (at $9 million) in addition to McDavid ($12.5 M) and Leon ($8 M) would have severely blown the budget going forward.

Critics of the trade have consistently focused on the fact Hall > Larssen in terms of fancies. They have consistently ignored factors like alternatives, the circumstances, and frankly, reality.

Even in retrospect I find it hard to see how you criticize the deal. The lower cost alternatives (Demers, Hamonic, Barrie) all had crappy years and would not have been able to play top minutes for the Oilers.

On the other hand Larssen did very well, and filled a massive hole. And Maroon/ Lucic made up for the loss of Hall on LW: Balance

Gayfish

Positive Hall’s personality got him moved. Nobody touches lowes jersey for forever, then as soon as Hall is gone a PTO gets it. Chiarelli talked all summer about a culture change and only made two moves (Yak, Hall) that actually moved guys out. One or the other if not both were deemed problems by upper management.

Pescador

Georges:
Here’s where teams with Taylor Hall, type A leader, finished in the standings:

2010-11 30
2011-12 29
2012-13 24
2013-14 28
2014-15 28
2015-16 29
2016-17 28

Taylor Hall may be a fine hockey player who’s had the bad luck of playing on very bad hockey teams. We could leave it at that.

But, that’s an extraordinary record for a type A leader, don’t you think? Don’t leaders wear the results of the organizations they lead? Or do they make excuses?

If you were a GM who traded for Taylor Hall’s leadership, what does it say about your leadership? Well, I suppose you got what you wanted.

NJ needed scoring,
Stop.
EDM needed defence,
Stop.
Even if there were extenuating circumstances, WTF is the point in endlessly debating it?

dustrock

Thinker:
Positive Hall’s personality got him moved. Nobody touches lowes jersey for forever, then as soon as Hall is gone a PTO gets it. Chiarelli talked all summer about a culture change and only made two moves (Yak, Hall) that actually moved guys out. One or the other if not both were deemed problems by upper management.

Might be a factor, but Shero also said the only non-McDavid player he’d trade Larsson for is Hall, so that might have helped Chia make the difficult decision, but I don’t think he was leading with “I’d like to trade Hall!”

russ99

I don’t see Montreal in on Nuge, they are looking for a more big physical complete center from the Habs fans I’ve listened to, hence the push for Leon in the Subban negotiations

While Toronto has an easier path to the playoffs in the East than we do/did, they’re much further from the balance photo than we are. They may sneak in this year, but unless they get lucky, I don’t see a cup from them in Mathews’ ELC with the Pens and Caps (and hopefully us) in the way.

Kinger_Oil.redux: – Me too.The other truth about change in management regime is they will change personel

– I have no respect for MacT’s body of work as GM: he was not qualified, he was the coach of a loser AHL team, and the only job he gets in NHL is the OBC: the only GM in history to go from another teams Farm team to almost-directly GM of another team.He was also a gutless leader, stubborn, over his head, falling for Dallas, skpe-firing Kruger after telling him he was going to get him help, no clue how bad his team was, etc

– Now Chia comes in, Harvard educated, lawyer, toiled away and worked his way up management.He’s in the minority still of GM’s who are actually qualified beyond just being a former hockey player

– Chia, like any new manager, is wont to get rid of a lot of the old-boys regime.

– I’m sure Chia can’t stand that he’s got MacT + OBC sitting beside him, hovering around.But credit to Chia for not making noise, buying his time.He probably said what you said: “we need to get rid of the Austins”.OBC says no F-ing way, they are the dream.

– So after a year, Chia says: “we are getting rid of some Austins”.OBC said no, but Chia bought currency, and timeHe trades Hall.

– Now that Chia clearly won that trade (*intentional controversial remark*), he be like: “OK, I’m the man, I’m getting rid of more Steve Austins.Remember when I said we need to get rid of them”

– God I hope MacT can man up and just leave.He’s a parasite (like a lot on un-qualified ex-players picking up checks in organizations), and you know he’s just itching for mistakes, to leak stuff to the press and put the knife in Chia’s back: that’s what all old management does if they don’t get turfed by the new guys.I guess I’d collect a free check too if I was MacT, but I don’t respect it.

– By all accounts, he’s a great guy, and fun to hang around and smart, and redeemed himself big-time after some poor choices: I am not saying anything about the person.I’d gladly have some beers with him, talk shop, shoot the sh$t, and thank him for his incompetence resulting in CmD!

Awesome post, totally agree. Don’t forget contract negotiations, that’s were MacT being in over his head really came through.

Don’t see why moving away from the Austins (and Pouliot) are in question.

Chia and McLellan have past history and a track record of success,and neither have anything in that track record about three offensive forwards on the rush doing whatever they want to score as many goals as possible.

Once Nicholson was brought in to legitimize hockey ops and run things, that MacT dream was dead.

godot10

Pouzar: 3 years ago I called out a well known WPG media member for saying he would start a franchise with Toews over Crosby. Tweeted him from time to time about it but he never wavered. Toews over Crosby. it wasn’t until Crosby won #3 that he changed his mind after I called him out again. Kudos to him for even replying but come on man……..

The Bylsma cloud hung over Crosby for a long time. He looked to be the NHL’s Peyton Manning. Now he can win championships with a subpar NHL defense behind him. Toews lucked into Quenneville…and they are sort of like Brady and Belichek.

Let’s hope the McLellan cloud doesn’t hang over McDavid.