G22 2017-18: Oilers at Red Wings

by Lowetide

The promise of youth is intoxicating but soon gives way to building a life and pushing toward a new tomorrow. For the Edmonton Oilers, who drafted Darnell Nurse, Leon Draisaitl, Connor McDavid, Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto in consecutive drafts, the future looks bright. The problem right now? Right now.

THE ATHLETIC

We went a little crazy with the content yesterday and last night, there was so much to write about we simply couldn’t stop! The special Lowetide offer is here. Check it out!

SNOWBLIND FRIEND,YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers in November 2015: 3-6-2, goal differential -6
  • Oilers in November 2016: 4-6-1, goal differential -3
  • Oilers in November 2017: 4-6-1, goal differential -8

Edmonton beat Pittsburgh 3-2 in a shootout November 28, 2015 and were 6-3 winners over Colorado one year later. I swear this team was on track for a reasonable November on Friday morning. This is a helluva flu.

AFTER 21, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers 15-16: 7-13-1, goal differential -9
  • Oilers 16-17: 12-8-1, goal differential +10
  • Oilers 17-18: 7-12-2, goal differential -18

It was a 4-1 loss to Carolina in 2015, a 3-2 shootout loss to Arizona one year ago. There isn’t much to say, beyond the fact that on this trajectory, the Oilers will reach garbage bag day with a final record of 27-47-8. A lot of NHL careers are going to end if this holds. The 2009-10 ended the NHL careers of Robert Nilsson, Marc Pouliot, Ryan Stone, Jeff Deslauriers. Playing on a bad team costs a player his reputation, can’t imagine what playing on a team that goes from 103 points to 62 points does for some of these fringe players.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM NOVEMBER

  • At home to: Pittsburgh, New Jersey, Detroit (Expected: 2-1-0) (Actual 1-2-0)
  • On the road to: NYI, New Jersey, NYR, Washington (Expected: 1-2-1) (Actual: 2-1-1)
  • At home to: Vegas, St. Louis (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual: 1-1-0)
  • On the road to: Dallas, St. Louis, Detroit, Buffalo, Boston (Expected 2-2-1) (Actual 0-2-0)
  • At home to: Arizona, Toronto (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 7-7-2, 16 points in 16 games 
  • Current results: 4-6-1, nine points in 11 games

I see two very winnable (Buffalo, Arizona) games here, but if the Oilers play like they did last night we might not see a win until December. Very disappointing performance.

DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

  • Nurse-Larsson went 16-19 together and 1-2 5×5 GF. Larsson is a consistent and intelligent defender, he was the culprit on two. Larsson was very poor. Nurse scored a nice goal long after the result was known, slow to cover numerous times.
  • Klefbom-Benning went 4-9 together, Oscar-Larsson went 3-6 together and 0-2 in GF. I told you Larsson had a bad night! Benning was in a fight, that explains some of his low TOI, don’t know what else happened. Oscar is not at his confident best and so is left betwixt and between a lot.
  • Russell-Gryba went 6-11 and 2-1 in GF together. Russell made a fantastic pass to Leon for his goal. I know it was after the game was over, but that was nice. Russell would be my pick for top defender.
  • Cam Talbot made one save on three shots (.333) and Laurent Brossoit stopped 31 of 37, .838. Lordy. I believe in Cam Talbot.
  • Natural Stat Trick and NHL.com.

FORWARDS

  • Khaira-Nuge-Draisaitl looked as good as anyone, going 5-4 together (0-1 GF). Nuge-Leon 12-14, 2-2 GF. The goals for came after the west was won, so let’s not give out any gold stars.
  • Cammalleri-Letestu-Kassian went 4-8 together, 0-1 GF. They were not the reason for this loss but for three veterans this group were in the wrong spot frequently. Cammalleri was 1-6 early with Strome-Puljujuarvi so got moved down the lineup.
  • Maroon-Strome-Puljujarvi went 5-8 together, 0-1 GF.  Maroon-Puljujarvi were 7-6 together, it took me some time to find a positive (and it ain’t much).
  • Lucic-McDavid-Caggiula went 6-15 (Caggiula, 1-3 GF) and 7-11 (Lucic 1-2 GF). Fabulous goal, but 4-10 against Schenn-Schwartz-Tarasenko (Blues top line went 3-1 GF against McDavid line). McDavid played less than Ryan Strome, suggesting the coach pulled the chute early and that 97 is still not 100 percent.

WHAT IS POSITIVE?

The possession numbers remain a positive, and if you believe in those numbers (I do) regression should involve more goals, more stops, more wins.

  • Corsi for 5×5: 54.48 (No. 2 in NHL)
  • Fenwick for 5×5: 54.29 (No. 2 in NHL)
  • Shots for 5×5: 52.98 (No. 6 in NHL)
  • Goals for 5×5: 42.50 (No. 27 in NHL)
  • Scoring chances for 5×5: 54.31 (No. 2 in NHL)
  • HD Scoring chances for 5×5: 53.46 (No. 6)
  • Natural Stat Trick

I believe in those numbers, that’s a fact. Having said that, we have seen teams with strong shot metrics miss the playoffs in past seasons (LAK) and the Oilers are on the way to doing it again. Tyler Dellow on twitter was riffing on the idea of Darnell Nurse ‘gaming the Corsi’ as a theory (Note: he did not say it was so) and maybe that’s part of it.

I  wrote at The Athletic last night about keeping the powder dry and for me it makes a lot of sense. I know you want to fire Peter Chiarelli but we’re 21 games into the season. I know you want Todd McLellan ousted, but we’re 25 percent through the piece and the won-loss doesn’t rhyme with the possession numbers.

Feel free to tell me I’m crazy or a fraud, but until we figure out what’s going on with these possession numbers I’m not going to budge. On the day he was fired, Dallas Eakins’ Edmonton Oilers had a 5×5 Corsi for % of 50.9. History teaches us that, over time, good possession teams win more than they lose. There are always (famous) outliers but that’s a fact. History also tells us that once you fire the general manager, he’s going to rebuild and reload and make the team in his own image. Time’s a wastin’.

My question for you, dear reader, is this: Is the won-loss record of the Edmonton Oilers obscuring a pretty good hockey team? If so, why are you in such an all fire hurry to fire Peter Chiarelli and or Todd McLellan? Wouldn’t you rather wait until the offseason and proceed with an organized plan that gives you the largest pool of talent from which to choose?

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN 1260. We have a bunch going on and we’re in a quick hurry to get there. Scheduled to appear:

  • Darcy McLeod, Because Oilers. Last night’s game, defensive pairings, trades, what the hell is going on out here?
  • Simon Boisvert, Prospect Insider. Thoughts on Jesse Puljujarvi six games into his NHL season, plus is there anyone in Bakersfield who can help?
  • Ansar Khan, MLive.com. The Detroit Red Wings are the Oilers opposition tonight, how are things in Motown?
  • Bob Nightingale, USA Today. It’s a bad day for the Atlanta Braves.

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

 

 

 

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OriginalPouzar

I’m not even going to look at the numbers from last night – they are meaningless to me as the only thing that really matters was the total lack of effort, at least that is what I saw.

I almost never question the effort of individual players let alone pretty much an entire team – to me, this is a tough game and a grueling schedule and these guys are amazing at what they provide on the ice as far as effort. That is 100% NOT what I saw last night – I saw a complete lack of actual care in their game.

The one mitigating factor is if the illness is truly going through the room but, even if that is the case, its not an excuse for what I witnessed last night – teams fight through illness each and every year and don’t look as checked out as what I believe i saw.

OriginalPouzar

There, I’ve said my piece and I’ve moved on from last night.

I am disappointing by I am look forward to tonight – another opportunity for 2 points in the standings and, frankly, for the team to redeem itself.

I have no interest in spending the day(s) bitching about moves by our GM and coaching decisions of the past.

I am interested in talking Oilers hockey and about tonight’s game.

I would have thought Brossoit would get the start tonight but I think Talbot gets the net again.

The revitalization of this team starts, in my mind, with Cam Talbot.

We need to see a semblance of the elite starting goalie from last year.

Tonight is the night.

Go Oilers!

smellyglove

This will not be a playoff year. One year in the post-season (2016-27) over the course of an eleven year run. Despite four #1 overalls, along with a #4/6/7/10 during that run. History and math tells us that picking high leads to selecting good players. Players that either help you win or give you the currency to build a better team. Think about that. The level of suck and high drafting that is panning out to absolute squat.

Larsson: 3 points (I know, I know, can’t measure by this metric)
Strome: 8 points
Reinhart: 0 points (in the AHL!)

Yakupov: 9 points
Barzal: 19 points
Eberle: 14 points
Hall: 21 points

General Managers have been shot for less.

Last year was an aberration:
1) Little to no injuries
2) Favourable schedule
3) Luck (career surges at key positions: G, #1/2 LD, #1C, #1RD)

Woodguy v2.0

Wings are speedy up front, slow on the back end but move the puck north like a NHL team.

Currently 3rd in the Atlantic behind TOR & TBY with a +6 goal differential.

6-2-2 in their last 10 on the back of good goalering by Howard.

The Edmonton Oilers are mostly slow up front, can’t transition the puck out of their zone, have the flu and are a team in the National Hockey League.

GOILERS!!

*clap,clap*

Jethro Tull

I understand the sentiment to not panic, but when exactly ia the right time to panic? Tambo was demonized for sitting on his hands, yet LT, you always preach patience, which is usually good advice but too much is flat out procrastination. Chia stood pat in the off season and played it safe. And yet here we are.

JimmyV1965

Last night the Oilers truly looked like the team from the decade of darkness. They were hemmed into their own zone for long stretches. They couldn’t break out, maintain the forecheck. They were truly lost out there.

Jethro Tull

Woodguy v2.0,

Howard is doing extremely well. Happy Days.

SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo!

I agree wholeheartedly with you and the numbers LT.

Don’t do anything rash, things will normalize!

Three things are bothering me though

1) Twice now in the last 16 days we watched the team give up after a bad start. I’m ok with losing (Rags game, Washington for example) but like OP above I can’t stand it when the team gives up. It was a hallmark of the DoD and nothing causes me to worry more than giving up.

2) How do you shelter dmen at this point? I understand signing Russel was a tough pill for many to swallow but for me I am beside myself with the full on collapse of Klefbom and Benning simultaneously. Young players take time and I get that but yeesh.

3) The defensive resets need to stop NOW. I completely lost count of how many times the D held onto the puck for too long yesterday before making a pass. I understand a coach saying “don’t force it!” but I don’t think a coach ever says “don’t pass it at all!” The lack of transition is killing me right now and I don’t think its the coaching staff that is the culprit, this is a confidence issue and the d need to figure it our ASAP because the forwards are skating into a damn wall each and every breakout.

Tonight’s game is beyond huge IMO. Goalie needs to steal one and players need to find their fire. This is standing on the edge of the abyss, here’s hoping they find a way to jump back.

Go Oilers!

Jethro Tull

JimmyV1965:
Last night the Oilers truly looked like the team from the decade of darkness. They were hemmed into their own zone for long stretches. They couldn’t break out, maintain the forecheck. They were truly lost out there.

Most people I’ve talked to said the same as me: They looked like as Eakins team. Bad positioning which leads to being second to the puck which leads to sucking. The Blues looked like Edmonton did last year.

5 minutes late and a dollar short.

Jethro Tull

SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!,

No they MAY normalize. Statistics doesn’t work like that and has no notion of some kind of cosmic balance. They don’t care that we suck, so they may not ever normalize.

dustrock

“My question for you, dear reader, is this: Is the won-loss record of the Edmonton Oilers obscuring a pretty good hockey team? If so, why are you in such an all fire hurry to fire Peter Chiarelli and or Todd McLellan? Wouldn’t you rather wait until the offseason and proceed with an organized plan that gives you the largest pool of talent from which to choose?”

The biggest surprise to me, because injuries to Seksy/Drai/Drake/Sleepy aside, and literally all of Chia’s gambles not paying off, is that this is essentially the same roster who was 1 meltdown and some horrific reffing away from the Western Conference Finals.

The lack of resilience this year compared to last is frankly shocking.

You’d think Talbot would be rock steady after a career-best year. Instead he looks like Ben Scrivens.

The defence looks lost.

The systems are the same, so why aren’t they working?

Is it confidence? These are professional athletes. Surely the confidence levels can’t be affected so quickly.

I wanted to fire Chiarelli after his offseason, let alone 21 games into the year, but even in his worst nightmare the team isn’t this bad.

For a league where there’s so much parity, for the Oilers to look this bad is almost frightening.

JimmyV1965

The malaise in this organization is becoming palpable. Not only are the Oilers awful but so is Bakersfield. They are one of the worst teams in the AHL. We have one scorer in the top 100 and he’s 49th. The farm team hasn’t made the playoffs in three years and hasn’t been good since Todd Nelson. What exactly does Gary Fleming bring to the table and is this the guy who should be developing our prospects? He sure isn’t hitting a homerun with the Russians. Would he ever be considered as even an interim replacement for TMac? What about our succession plan for Chia? Is there one guy in the organization that would even be considered for mentorship? Big picture this looks pathetic.

dustrock

The funny thing is, I ain’t even mad.

The anger flared and spilled over when Hall was traded, but even this offseason, I was more frustrated than mad.

And the team being this bad?

I’m a lifelong Knicks fan. There are times when you just have to laugh at the sheer microcosm of human failing that a sports franchise can provide.

SayItAin'tSo, Gretz, SayItAin'tSo!

Jethro Tull,

Fair enough. I don’t really know what you want me to say here.

I can jump on the “they are total garbage, fire everyone into the sun and trade everyone but McDavid”

But alas I’m probably not going to do that.

They sucked last night for sure yup.

They didn’t suck in the vast majority of losses this season, most of which were not blowouts, they were one goal games that were incredibly tight.

Their confidence is shot across the board now no question.

hunter1909

dustrock: I’m a lifelong Knicks fan. There are times when you just have to laugh at the sheer microcosm of human failing that a sports franchise can provide.

Prediction:

Barring an enormous turnaround, Chiarelli+McLellan are both sacked inside the next 3 weeks with the OBC Gretzky, Messier, Coffey, Anderson appearing Zorro-like at a news conference where they tell the world the Oilers are back! etc Gretzky the new GM with Messier head coach etc.

ps: Lowe+MacT WILL return in some capacity.

JimmyV1965

dustrock,

The team that showed up for the last three games is not the same team that started the season. If they contniue like this their possession numbers will crater very soon.

hunter1909

JimmyV1965: What exactly does Gary Fleming bring to the table and is this the guy who should be developing our prospects? He sure isn’t hitting a homerun with the Russians. Would he ever be considered as even an interim replacement for TMac? What about our succession plan for Chia? Is there one guy in the organization that would even be considered for mentorship? Big picture this looks pathetic.

This is why the Oiler fans are(deservedly) vilified.

Everyone knows Katz promised a “World Class” everything.

leadfarmer

The name of the game is speed speed speed. Have been saying it for years. Finally people are realizing it.
There’s slow Corsi and theres fast corsi. We are kings of the slow corsi. Fast teams will continue to outplay their corsi and slow teams will continue to underperform their corsi.
This team needs a rebuild. I’m glad we didnt sell our futures for a stopgap. Purge the slow players. Purge the McLellan play it safe by breaking out along the boards system

hunter1909

If anything, the current situation clears Kevin Lowe of all misdeeds.

I think it’s time for the management to swallow their pride and ask the one guy who admits to knowing about winning for advice.

OriginalPouzar

On a positive note – each of the three garbage time Oiler goals were beautiful goals last night.

On that other hand, hey Oilers, how about working for some garbage goals?

OmJo

dustrock: There are times when you just have to laugh at the sheer microcosm of human failing that a sports franchise can provide.

Thank God for Oilers twitter! Makes this season at least entertaining.

OriginalPouzar

“My question for you, dear reader, is this: Is the won-loss record of the Edmonton Oilers obscuring a pretty good hockey team?”

I’d like to say yes to this question but I’m not sure. Better hockey team than their record shows but I’m not sure if they are a “pretty good hockey team”.

I’m throwing last night away and not counting it in any analysis – its a one off poor-ass and unacceptable effort that I’m confident won’t be repeated.

OriginalPouzar

Let me ask this: What is their record if Cam Talbot is playing at the elite level that he was last year?

I would posit a playoff position.

Bad goaltending changes everything on the ice.

OmJo

Could it be we are a good possession team but a poor execution team?

JimmyV1965

hunter1909: This is why the Oiler fans are(deservedly) vilified.

Everyone knows Katz promised a “World Class” everything.

I’m not sure I understand. We’re supposed to be okay with a lousy AHL team? It might even be different if we had a bunch of young prospects on the team that had a legit shot of being NHL players. We’ve got a bunch of forwards on that team who will never play in the NHL. Shouldn’t they stack the team then with quality AHL players who can win then? This is Fleming’s third year running the show and the team has never been good. Is this okay then?

Louis Levasseur

SayItAin’tSo, Gretz, SayItAin’tSo!,

WIth regard to point #3, my problem with our breakout is that our defensemen seem to just blindly rim it around the boards, even with less than full pressure on them. Their defensemen know this, so they make an easy pinch and we don’t get out of our zone.

We may not be speaking of the same thing here (re-set vs. rimming it), but I’d much prefer to see more reverses to relieve the pressure than simply blasting it around the boards and hoping for the best. No way you get any transition through the neutral zone.

anjinsan

To add to Smellyglove’s list of current statuses of lost Oiler talent…

Schultz 16g 2-3-5 (and 2 cups)
Carlo 19g 0-4-4

Regarding McLellan, while he is a somewhat stifling systems coach who relies on the blender as opposed to innate talent in putting together lines, there is no question that he is a competent, steady, professional, veteran coach and in the previous two seasons he corrected the bad culture he found in place on arrival.

I don’t agree that the team is the same as last year … Pouliot, Eberle, Hendricks (who is doing well in Winnipeg right now), and Sekera (injured) obviously were bigger factors than given credit for. Also, Maroon, face it, was never 1st or even 2nd line material.

I cringe at hammering klefbom right now. Basically that would be giving him the same treatment that wilted Schultz when the player that Schultz is today was there all along and just needed to be handled with mentorship and proper minutes (as opposed to desperation) while he developed.

Lucic is waaaaaaayyyy overpaid. Russell is waaaaaaaaaayyyyy overpaid. Shame on these contracts. Also, Draisaitl is not an $8.5 million player. I love the German, but he is 2-2.5 million overpaid, and that money should be available to contract for further talent.

God bless the Nuge and the Nurse, because those two are rising to their potential.

Nuge and Nurse are inheritance, not Chiarelli’s doing.

In Chiarelli we bust. He deforested the talent.

OriginalPouzar

Jethro Tull:
I understand the sentiment to not panic, but when exactly ia the right time to panic? Tambo was demonized for sitting on his hands, yet LT, you always preach patience, which is usually good advice but too much is flat out procrastination. Chia stood pat in the off season and played it safe. And yet here we are.

When is the right time to panic? Never, in my mind.

To me, panic would lead to a trade of futures (Puljijarvi, first rounder) to acquire a player or players that would only be here for a few months, pure UFA rentals (Mike Green, Evander Kane, James Neal).

That is the type of trade that could make sense for a team near the deadline where that team is a solid contender looking for a piece to put them over the top – that is not a trade for a team that is currently one of the worst in the league and hoping just to maybe get back in the wild card race.

Réal Goudenyéu

What in Sam Hill happened to klefbom? He’s not even close to average.

OriginalPouzar

JimmyV1965:
The malaise in this organization is becoming palpable. Not only are the Oilers awful but so is Bakersfield. They are one of the worst teams in the AHL. We have one scorer in the top 100 and he’s 49th.The farm team hasn’t made the playoffs in three years and hasn’t been good sinceTodd Nelson. What exactly does Gary Fleming bring to the table and is this the guy who should be developing our prospects? He sure isn’t hitting a homerun with the Russians. Would he ever be considered as even an interim replacement for TMac? What about our succession plan for Chia? Is there one guy in the organization that would even be considered for mentorship? Big picture this looks pathetic.

This is true but I wouldn’t say that means our prospect pool matches the record of the AHL team.

Our material prospects on the Condors are rookie pro d-men – two of them are real legit NHL prospects (one has been hurt for half the season) and the other a bit of a distant bell but a real prospect.

The Condors are void of legit forward prospects but there are many on the verge of turning pro – next year we have Yamamoto and Benson turning pro and the year after we will have Safin and Maksimov.

There is some prospect talent in the USHL and NCAA but I have no idea about their materiality or timelines – I can only keep track of so much.

McSorley33

My question for you, dear reader, is this: Is the won-loss record of the Edmonton Oilers obscuring a pretty good hockey team? If so, why are you in such an all fire hurry to fire Peter Chiarelli and or Todd McLellan? Wouldn’t you rather wait until the offseason and proceed with an organized plan that gives you the largest pool of talent from which to choose?
*****************************************************************************************************************
Mark Letestu are Ryan Strome are anchoring your 3rd and 4th lines down the middle.
( Camileri and Jokinen are the punch line )

Our team speed is getting recognized by nearly every city we venture into….

I am all for waiting for some sober air for Peter in the summer, but let’s not have
any pretensions about this roster.

Further, I am getting a faint whiff of coach / player disgruntlement …could be wrong I fully acknowledge. But sometimes it seems like Zach Kassian has pulled the chute.

Dustylegnd

Last year was an aberration:
1) Little to no injuries
2) Favourable schedule
3) Luck (career surges at key positions: G, #1/2 LD, #1C, #1RD)

I will take great issue issue with:

career surges at key positions: #1C,

if you think that was a career year for 97, you are MAD, and I will guarantee you this, when his contract expires, if this mess has not been fixed, and it now looks like we are another 3 years away from any success, 97 leaves and will be very very very careful to join a properly run NHL organization and proceed to lead league scoring for another 4-5 years.

This mess starts and finishes with shit Goal keeping, shit Defense 4,5,6 and a thorough lack of team speed to bring heavy back pressure

Here is the real scary part, this team is specifically built to compete vs heavy hockey teams in the west, we just got our shit pushed in twice by St Louis, they dominated us in all aspects, compete, physicality, shots, ohh and goals for….that result should terrify everyone, (we haven’t played LA or the Ducks etc)

If Sekera is truly missed this much, we are incredibly shallow on D with middling prospects in the minors that require 2-3 more years each of AHL seasoning…piss poor drafting for a decade is fully blown Cancer to NHL organizations and yet we continue to employ MacT, Howson and Duane Suttter…..could we be any less innovative or any more old school?

The Oilers can not piss away another year of McDavids prime so buckle up people Chiarelli will soon be in full trade mode….another terrifying prospect which could very well end up pissing away the remainder of his contract here.

How we blame this on coaching I have no idea, if I were T McL, right now I would feel like Lee Harvey, as the Buzzards, circle…give me a break…..

Yes it is a series of unfortunate events but you know what, our best players who are paid very well are not performing…..Salaries are a funny thing, Calgary was very fortunate that both Goudreau and Monahan had contracts expire in non play off years, I am guess Draisaitl would be getting 6.5/year if his contract had been up for negotiation this year rather than last….timing is not everything,TIMING IS THE ONLY THING

On the plus side, only a complete fool gives Talbot anything other than a token raise on his next contract, these November swoons he has had in 2 of the last 3 years are devastating and can be used to the Oilers negotiating advantage.

Jethro Tull

OriginalPouzar: When is the right time to panic?Never, in my mind.

To me, panic would lead to a trade of futures (Puljijarvi, first rounder) to acquire a player or players that would only be here for a few months, pure UFA rentals (Mike Green, Evander Kane, James Neal).

That is the type of trade that could make sense for a team near the deadline where that team is a solid contender looking for a piece to put them over the top – that is not a trade for a team that is currently one of the worst in the league and hoping just to maybe get back in the wild card race.

Nope imo. That is the bet Chia should be making. He bets that Neal would resign against JP ever being as good as James Neal. I make that trade every day, but i doubt Vegas does. As I said yesterday, potential means nothing if never realised. We fall hard for our prospects…..

who

OriginalPouzar: When is the right time to panic?Never, in my mind.

To me, panic would lead to a trade of futures (Puljijarvi, first rounder) to acquire a player or players that would only be here for a few months, pure UFA rentals (Mike Green, Evander Kane, James Neal).

That is the type of trade that could make sense for a team near the deadline where that team is a solid contender looking for a piece to put them over the top – that is not a trade for a team that is currently one of the worst in the league and hoping just to maybe get back in the wild card race.

I think you can relax on that front. This team is way past the point of contemplating a playoff rental.
If they do make a big trade it will probably be someone from the core, which should worry you even more, like Nuge or Klefbom. Possibly even Drai or Nurse, if it has come to that.
My advice would be to stand pat, sell off your UFAs, and build for next year. A big trade probably does more harm than good at this point. Patience Mr Chia

McSorley33

anjinsan,

Great points on Nurse and the Nuge.

They have been, mostly, really good this year.

Jethro Tull

who: I think you can relax on that front. This team is way past the point of contemplating a playoff rental.
If they do make a big trade it will probably be someone from the core, which should worry you even more, like Nuge or Klefbom. Possibly even Drai or Nurse, if it has come to that.
My advice would be to stand pat, sell off your UFAs, and build for next year. A big trade probably does more harm than good at this point. Patience Mr Chia

A big trade would change the ethos of this team. Standing pat means you are relying on the same people who got you into this mess to get you out. They have shown zero evidence of having that capability. As in real life, either you change, or you die. But this bloody-mindedness of keeping powder dry and standing pat will see this team amother 10yrs out of the playoffs. Look to Nashville. Not afraid of making changes, eh? Or Chicago. Blues fired Hitch in Feb, ffs. Change. It’s what good teams do.

Woodguy v2.0

dustrock,

The defence looks lost.
The systems are the same, so why aren’t they working?

You answered your own question in the sentence before the question.

Everything good flows from getting the puck back and getting it turned north.

They can’t get it back and they can’t turn it north lately.

Different problem than the beginning of the year.

JimmyV1965

Any GM who would trade a high pick or prospect right now would be incompetent to the nth degree. James Neal or Evander Kane are not leading this team to the promised land.

Kinger_Oil.redux

hunter1909: Prediction:

Barring an enormous turnaround, Chiarelli+McLellan are both sacked inside the next 3 weeks with the OBC Gretzky, Messier, Coffey, Anderson appearing Zorro-like at a news conference where they tell the world the Oilers are back! etc Gretzky the new GM with Messier head coach etc.

ps: Lowe+MacT WILL return in some capacity.

– Maybe not three weeks, but you know the OBC is angling for it, and Katz wants to do it…

– The first tell will be when we start hearing quotes from MacT: Chia at least up to now has been the voice of the team. Quotes from MacT is the beginnig of Hunter and Kinger’s nightmare…

– Regression to the mean, some puck luck, and anyone will be “better GM’s and coaches”

DBO

Happy Eberle is gone, since it would be hard to hear about his lack of character and drive. He only scores goals, so its his fault.

Funny thing is after last year no one knows who to blame. I know this blog knows, lol, but it seems like the media were caught by surprise that this team is lacking.

Who knew that losing a veteran number 2/3 all situation dmen would hurt. Who knew that trying to fill 3 wing spots with kids wouldn’t work out. Who knew that overpaying a 5/6 defensive dman and expecting kids to step up and deliver wouldn’t work. Who knew that having a kid backup to pick up pieces and hold serve if Talbot struggled wouldnt work.

Pains me to say it. But Calgary did it right. They added vet dmen to fill holes instead of kids. They they added vets on wing to balance the forwards. They essentially had 1 spot on D (#6 dman) and 1 spot on the 4th line up for grabs for kids. Not our #3 d spot, our 2 and 3 RW, 4 LW and back up goalie.

Too many bets. Too much hope. It must drive McClellan crazy to see what he can work with.

godot10

//Russell would be my pick for top defender//

Really? If you don’t see the ice against the top forwards of the other team and see limited time on the PK, how does that make one the top defender.

He was one of the protected defenders.

JimmyV1965

Jethro Tull: A big trade would change the ethos of this team. Standing pat means you are relying on the same people who got you into this mess to get you out. They have shown zero evidence of having that capability. As in real life, either you change, or you die. But this bloody-mindedness of keeping powder dry and standing pat will see this team amother 10yrs out of the playoffs. Look to Nashville. Not afraid of making changes, eh? Or Chicago. Blues fired Hitch in Feb, ffs. Change. It’s what good teams do.

A big trade is fine. Trading youth for a rental would be incompetence. Trading for someone with a long-term cap friendly contract may be needed.

PhrankLee

Woodguy v2.0:
dustrock,

The defence looks lost.
The systems are the same, so why aren’t they working?

You answered your own question in the sentence before the question.

Everything good flows from getting the puck back and getting it turned north.

They can’t get it back and they can’t turn it north lately.

Different problem than the beginning of the year.

Concur.

Retrieval has been the main issue of late in my mind.

I’m with LT on staying pat.

Fuck the Wings.

Skoilers!

Jethro Tull

JimmyV1965:
Any GM who would trade a high pick or prospect right now would be incompetent to the nth degree. James Neal or Evander Kane are not leading this team to the promised land.

No, it’s about improving this team with proven talent and not betting Drake Cagguila, Khaira et al will lead this team to the promised land. And if i were to bet, i would bet Kane or Neal have more likelihood than any of our prospects of doing that. Cassandra is right, you have to constantly be looking to improve talent.

Jethro Tull

JimmyV1965: A big trade is fine. Trading youth for a rental would be incompetence.Trading for someone with a long-term cap friendly contract may be needed.

Nobody, NOBODY, is trading us cents on the dollar for our youth at the moment. There is absolutely no point in having these players if you either a) never develop them properly or b) trade them when you don’t need them and need something else.

Incompetence would be another GM trading a long term cap friendly contract of a good player for our prospects. Ain’t gonna happen.

godot10

OriginalPouzar:

The one mitigating factor is if the illness is truly going through the room but, even if that is the case, its not an excuse for what I witnessed last night – teams fight through illness each and every year and don’t look as checked out as what I believe i saw.

McDavid and Draisaitl are undoubted peak trained athletes. Overplaying them as McLellan does may compromise their immune systems.

This playing through injury and through illness…to tough it out is nonsense. McDavid has supposedly been sick for over a week. Perhaps icetime and illness should be managed more intelligently by the coaching staff.

McSorley33

Cult of Hockey Grades today, my asterisks highlight key point

#27 Milan Lucic, 2. Had an OK night in the offensive zone with a team-high 6 shot attempts and the goal that broke the goose egg early in the third. **But did not manage the puck well at all, turning it over far too frequently. Staples charged him with ***no fewer than 8 mistakes on opposition scoring chances, a legendarily bad number for a winger**** Also took a pair of penalties, one of type “huh?” and the other for slashing that resulted in the inevitable Blues powerplay tally.

**********************************************************************************************
Milan Lucic is an epic turnover machine. Epic.

We need to ask him if he would be amenable to moving to a city of *his* choice. And
see if a deal can be reached.

He was a turnover machine in the playoffs. He was a turnover machine last year in the regular season

This season is done and can’t imagine Milan getting better as he ages.

Cassandra

This team needs a young coach. The speed and intricate passing the Blues took through the neutral zone was breathtaking. McClellan is a play beneath the ringette line kind of coach. It is hurting the team.

Man, last night was a train wreck. 8-3 flatters the Oilers. The Blues easily could have had 12 or 14 goals.

The sad part is the general manager is out of cards. The team has no trade assets, no real blue chip prospects in the pipeline, and no future cap space. Chiarelli needs to be fired because this is all his fault, but there isn’t anything the next general manager can do.

He can’t trade Ryan Strome, Adam Larsson, Milan Lucic, and Kris Russell for Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle, and Jason Demers.

Man, when you put it all in one place in the light of day, it sure looks ugly.

Dustylegnd

JimmyV1965: A big trade is fine. Trading youth for a rental would be incompetence.Trading for someone with a long-term cap friendly contract may be needed.

The poetic truth has been stated, we do continue to rely on the people who got us into this mess, Chiarelli, MacT, Howson, etc etc ….this is the terrifying truth…….a 903 sv% means no playoffs …let go ahead and call a spade a shovel ok

GCW_69

“My question for you, dear reader, is this: Is the won-loss record of the Edmonton Oilers obscuring a pretty good hockey team? If so, why are you in such an all fire hurry to fire Peter Chiarelli and or Todd McLellan? Wouldn’t you rather wait until the offseason and proceed with an organized plan that gives you the largest pool of talent from which to choose?”

I don’t think this is a particularly good team. They have some good pieces, but poor cap management and a really poor supporting cast is going to make turning north difficult.

I do believe that there is something fundamentally wrong with the culture in the Oilers front office. Firing Peter or Todd alone isn’t going to change that. Rarely does changing one person out of one role result in a fundamental change in culture with the old culture is as embedded as it obviously is with the Oilers (or Lowe, MacT and Hoswon wouldn’t still be around) unless that leader is exceptional. It’s highly unlikely that a new hire would have the leadership ability to singlehandedly change the culture.

The Oilers front office culture somehow drives consistently poor decision making, lack of urgency, and questionable accountability. If they aren’t willing to step up to the culture issue, then:
1) I worry that firing Chia changes nothing
2) I would be concerned on who the replacement would be. Do we see MacT or Lowe back in the chair?

Culture aside, the argument that hiring a new GM sets progress back, however, seems questionable to me. I would expect as part of the hiring process you would be asking the GM candidates to articulate their plan. One of the screening criteria would be finding a GM that understands the sense of urgency and has an intelligent approach that recognizes that.