G53 2017-18: Oilers at Ducks

by Lowetide

We’re about two months away from exit meetings and possibly ownership following through on changes. It might impact the front office, coaching staff, scouting staff, it will absolutely impact the roster. What is the state of the organization? My suspicion is that one or two plans are sitting on the owner’s desk, or maybe rattling around in his mind. Todd McLellan and Peter Chiarelli may or may not arrive at training camp in the fall in their current roles, but in my opinion a lot of their story depends on the next 30 games. An 82-85 point season is easier to defend than something around 75. These games matter to the Edmonton Oilers. Including tonight.

THE ATHLETIC!

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GOOD VIBRATIONS, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • February 2016: 2-1-0, goal differential +5 (4 points)
  • February 2017: 1-2-0, goal differential -3 (2 points)
  • February 2018: 1-1-1, goal differential 0 (3 points)
  • February 7, 2016: NYI 8, Edmonton 1 (Source)
  • February 11, 2017: Chicago 5, Edmonton 1 (Source)

This year’s Oilers are not running out of step with either of the two previous McLellan teams, no strong start to any month for Edmonton in recent years. Does Talbot go tonight and Montoya tomorrow, or vice versa?

AFTER 52, YEAR OVER YEAR

  • Oilers 15-16: 21-26-5, goal differential -21 (47 points)
  • Oilers 16-17: 28-16-8, goal differential +18 (64 points)
  • Oilers 17-18: 23-25-4, goal differential -23 (50 points)
  • February 6, 2016: Montreal 5, Edmonton 1 (Source)
  • February 2, 2017: Nashville 2, Edmonton 0 (Source)

Although we don’t necessarily want to  acknowledge it, the 2015-16 Oilers have shown us a lot about this season, even in recent weeks when some separation has occurred. That item above, the one about a 70-point team not being defensible, while an 82-85 point team would be a little different animal? I believe that to be the case, which makes the deadline interesting. Maybe we see the general manager adding at the deadline. It could happen just this way, maybe taking on the form of a Patrick Maroon extension.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM FEBRUARY?

  • At home to: Colorado, Tampa Bay (Expected 0-1-1) (Actual 1-0-1)
  • On the road to: Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose (Expected 1-1-1) (Actual 0-1-0)
  • At home to: Florida (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Vegas, Arizona, Colorado (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Boston, Colorado (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose (Expected 0-2-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 5-6-3, 13 points in 14 games
  • Current results: 1-1-1, three points in three games

Edmonton’s two games in California this weekend offer the team an opportunity to get back to ‘fake .500’ in the Bettman NHL. If the team goes 15-13-2 from this point to the end of the season, the final record will be 38-38-6, 82 points. In 15-16, the club would go 10-17-3 to finish 31-43-8, 70 points. If this team matches that record, the final scroll will read 33-42-7, 73 points. That would likely get people fired, although it might happen anyway.

LOWETIDE DRAFT LIST, 2008

For some of you, my back story lists are interesting curios. I posted my 2011 list yesterday in the comments section, will pass along the rest in the coming days. We begin with 2008, I’ve left the original comments and the actual draft number is in brackets. Here is the original post.

  1. [1] Steve Stamkos- Terrific talent but just average for 1st overall.
  2. [3] Zach Bogosian- He might end up being the best NHL player in this draft.
  3. [8] Mikael Boedker- Someone’s getting a ridiculous talent.
  4. [2] Drew Doughty- One dimensional, but what a dimension.
  5. [9] Joshua Bailey- Has wide range of skills.
  6. [5] Luke Schenn- A unqiue talent in this draft.
  7. [7] Colin Wilson- Calling card is his ability to take/make a pass.
  8. [14] Zach Boychuk- One dimensional talent has terrific skill.
  9. [6] Nikita Filatov- May be the equal of Stamkos.
  10. [4] Alex Pietrangelo- Mobile defender, raw compared to the group above him.
  11. [10] Cody Hodgson- Wide range of skills.
  12. [16] Joe Colborne- Playmaking center comes with size and risk.
  13. [46] Colby Robak- Size, speed and skill. Terrific package.
  14. [11] Kyle Beach- John Ferguson reincarnated.
  15. [20] Michael DelZotto- Good offense, needs work without the puck.
  16. [22] Jordan Eberle- Skill forward with big brain. Born Oiler.
  17. [24] Mattias Tedenby- Speed, skill and energy. Undersized.
  18. [17] Jake Gardiner- Sleeper. Terrific speed, smarts. 6-2, 170.
  19. [25] Greg Nemisz- Shooter with some size.
  20. [19] Luca Sbisa- Solid D prospect with wide range of skills.
  21. [15] Erik Karlsson- Intelligent puck mover is very small (5-11, 165).
  22. [36] Corey Trivino- Skilled playmaker, variety of skills. Undersized.
  23. [12] Tyler Myers- Huge defender who skates well. Not much offense.
  24. [13] Colton Teubert- Rock hard D with speed. A born Flame.
  25. [23] Tyler Cuma- Strong 2-way defender is undersized.
  26. [27] John Carlson- Bull in a china shop. Nice range of skills.
  27. [26] Tyler Ennis- Speed demon with skill. 43 goals in the dub.
  28. [21] Anton Gustafsson- Two way C with plus size and skill. Back a concern.
  29. [45] Zac Dalpe- Plus shot, has skill and a work ethic.
  30. [44] Luke Adam- Big scorer from the Q. Speed a concern.

Some hits, some misses, but it’s fun to look back on these items. I’m pleased that Eberle was such a great pick for Edmonton. In just 10 years, the slow defender has paid a heavy price. No way Luke Schenn goes this high in the modern game. Those Karlsson vitals look ridiculous even today, but what a player. The Ottawa Senators can draft like no one’s business, it’s the rest of the business that gets them in trouble.

WHO IS THE BEST OILERS BLUE?

My understanding is that Puck IQ and the brilliant ‘binning’ they employ will soon find its way to our shores. In the meantime, lots of discussion along the good ship Al Gore about who among the Oilers blue is the best. Although it is far past a lost cause, I will once again argue for my friend Corsi Rel as a very good line in the sand. Perfect? No. There is no single stat that gives us the entire photograph. However, Rel is a quick and easy glance into which player is getting the job done across many names. Here are the Oilers’ regulars and their Corsi Rel’s 5×5 via Natural Stat Trick.

  1. Darnell Nurse 2.51
  2. Brandon Davidson 2.11
  3. Andrej Sekera -0.26
  4. Matt Benning -0.29
  5. Oscar Klefbom -0.33
  6. Adam Larsson -1.27
  7. Kris Russell -4.16

As is always the case, Kris Russell doesn’t shine via this metric. In the interests of including Russell’s blocked shots prowess, here are the Fenwick numbers for the group:

  1. Darnell Nurse 3.74
  2. Brandon Davidson 0.85
  3. Oscar Klefbom 0.42
  4. Matt Benning -1.34
  5. Adam Larsson -1.97
  6. Kris Russell -2.33
  7. Andrej Sekera -4.80

All via NaturalStatTrick. The “Shots-against/60 5×5” number is Russell’s best metric that I follow, he is No. 4 (here). It’s okay that we disagree, but if you are touting Oscar Klefbom as a failure then I need to push back on it because that is wildly unfair to the player. Even in an injury season. Kris Russell can defend and that has value, but if Oscar does get dealt let it be known that this blog had his back from Day One until the trade was completed. Klefbom is the real thing.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN1260. A fun show ahead! Scheduled to appear:

  • Steve Lansky, BigMouthSports. Steve has been to two Olympics, we’ll talk about his experience and early take on the 2018 edition.
  • Nick Dika, bass player for the Arkells and Jays writer at Baseball Prospectus. We’ll talk rock and roll, plus baseball!
  • Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. NBA trade deadline incredible, plus Olympic games and the Oilers.
  • Paul Almeida, SSE. Preview the Saturday show and talk NHL trade deadline.

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

 

 

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Woodguy v2.0

Munny: Over a three year deal?That does seem like a stretch, actually.

No, its actually not.

He was offered the 3 year deal after July 1st.

He got to July 1st thinking “I hope I get a one way contract”

It is not a stretch to assume he would have accepted one prior to July 1st when only the Oilers could offer him a contract

Gret99zky

Mr. D.:
McDavid is in 50% of the scoring. Nice Stat but where the fk is everyone else. Serious problem. The trade value on this team is bottom of league and GMs know it.
This rut making a decent trade nearly impossible..the first thing a team looks at is points. They also use +- as a general indicator much to the disbelief of the number munched.

Fire the Capilano Mall?

frjohnk

Looking at the bright side, at least the road for the Flames to make the playoffs becomes 2 points tougher.

I know Oilers wont make the playoffs, now Im cheering for the Flames to not make it as well.

And Go Jets

OriginalPouzar

Easier said than done.

From accounts the prices are high and the buyers aren’t ready to pay them yet. They very well be more willing to pay them as we get closer to the deadline.

I’m also not so sure that any of our d-men will be going in a deadline deal – Auvitu is our only pending UFA d-man.

ArmchairGM

OriginalPouzar: The only player on the team that can be sent down without being exposed to waivers is Pakarinen.

In order to add to the roster, they need to remove someone from the roster and, in all likelihood, risk losing that player for nothing.

Nope. Start the deadline deals early, get prospects and picks in return.

OriginalPouzar

JimmyV1965:
I’ve never said this all season, but that was a pathetic effort. They didn’t show up to play. Very disappointing.We have all these big, tough players and they allow the Ducks to run McDavid. Kessler’s hit on McDavid’s knee should never ever be allowed to go without a response.

Why don’t they call up some dmen from the minors? Gryba, Simpson or Lowe. They can’t possibly be worse than the guys we keep trotting out game after game. At least you’re sending a message.

The only player on the team that can be sent down without being exposed to waivers is Pakarinen.

In order to add to the roster, they need to remove someone from the roster and, in all likelihood, risk losing that player for nothing.

OriginalPouzar

HT Joe:
So that was regulation loss #26.

The Oilers lost only 26 games in regulation for all of the 2016-2017 season, but managed that feat in only 53 games this season.

The team is going to be a seller this trade deadline, but does ownership trust Chiarelli to make any more trades?Does Chia get gassed before the trade deadline?

We wait…

I wouldn’t hold your breath….

OriginalPouzar

OriginalPouzar:
Spokane playing against Everett – lets see what Yamamoto can do against the nearly unbeatable Carter Hart.

Yamamoto scores the OT winner.

Bob Arctor

VOR,

Is there a Vor blog with all the previous “Thinking About the Draft ” posts?

Mr. D.

McDavid is in 50% of the scoring. Nice Stat but where the fk is everyone else. Serious problem. The trade value on this team is bottom of league and GMs know it.
This rut making a decent trade nearly impossible..the first thing a team looks at is points. They also use +- as a general indicator much to the disbelief of the number munched.

Pescador

Zelepukin:
If you were a scout who had never watched the Oilers play before tonight and I told you that #58 is a healthy scratch almost every night, you’d make a strong push to acquire him.

Every other night,
You know, it’s just that the numbers didn’t work out.
We need to get some extra games for guys like Letestu & Cammalleri
This is the same reason why they struggle to develop prospects in Bakersfield
Assholes

godot10

Nelson had a complete overhaul of his Grand Rapids squad this year. They were inconsistent till January but they are finally beginning to fire on all cylinders.

Pescador

JD_Wry:
Third game in four nights, in California, on Tabernac Saturday.

WCGW?

Here she come now say Al Montoya

HT Joe

russ99: Hall hasn’t been an Oiler for 589 days. Getting pretty sick of that.

There’s plenty to gripe about other than continuing to beat the skeletal remains of that horse.

In fairness, some people still claim that Chia is not a bad GM because his Bruins won the Stanley Cup, but that was 2,431 days ago…

godot10

Krueger’s Oilers and Nelson’s Oilers (not counting MacT’s 5 games), neither with a training camp produced about the same points per game as this McLellan squad. Their rosters were horrid compared to this one.

JimmyV1965

I’ve never said this all season, but that was a pathetic effort. They didn’t show up to play. Very disappointing. We have all these big, tough players and they allow the Ducks to run McDavid. Kessler’s hit on McDavid’s knee should never ever be allowed to go without a response.

Why don’t they call up some dmen from the minors? Gryba, Simpson or Lowe. They can’t possibly be worse than the guys we keep trotting out game after game. At least you’re sending a message.

Pescador

HT Joe,

Yep,
Fucking Donkeys

HT Joe

godot10:
Chiarelli and McLellan changed all the players,Literally all the players.

No way… Chia still has to trade away Klefbom and RNH to do that….

digger50

The difference between defensive units of these two teams is night and day.

Pescador

Old Timer:
Watching tonight’s game and several things come to mind.
1. The Oilers defensemen are terrible passers – without exception but Russell and Benning are the worst by far. The Oilers forwards are almost as bad at passing as their D men. The only players with a clue as forwards making passes are McDavid, Draisaitl, RNH, Puljujarvi and Strome. The rest have cement hands. Lucic is probably the worst. But it certainly reflects on the ineptitude of the Wingers
2. The Oilers players are not committed to playing physical hockey. Innumerable times they skate by a Duck player and don’t even bump them much less body check them. the only exception seems to be one shot delivered by Maroon on Cogliano.
3. They are not committed to making the strong, aggressive plays. They wave at Ducks with one hand on their stick. They try to make a cute play instead of the strong play. They try to make a fancy or pretty pass when they should be making short crisp passes.

I am a committed fan but I don’t get the impression that all the players are committed.

Excellent post,
They love the term ‘professional’ when they speak about themselves.
Talent, dedication, work ethic off the ice, competitive drive
Playing hard no matter how the chips fall should be part of it.
I see a lot of feeling sorry for themselves in this team

Scungilli Slushy

Fgary:
If lucic smashed kesler in the face, I’d say he’s earned his 6 mill this year.

He might as well do something. Take a horrendous suspension, send a new message to the league – Milan be Marchand psycho x 2! Or retire, or LTIR.

godot10

Chiarelli and McLellan changed all the players, Literally all the players.

digger50

D: I have a strange feeling that the ownership / upper management has already stopped Chia.I don’t see anymore dumb trades or contracts from Chia because he won’t be allowed to make them.

But he can still send out an e mail! Lol

russ99

godot10:
#ItsAllTaylorHallsFault

Hall hasn’t been an Oiler for 589 days. Getting pretty sick of that.

There’s plenty to gripe about other than continuing to beat the skeletal remains of that horse.

nafnikufesin

OriginalPouzar: From the 84/85 season to the 88/89 season, Mario Lemieux had 715 points in 368 games and played 11 playoff games.

Some ultra elite and generational players played on some bad teams over time.

And the Penguins fired both their coach and general manager prior to putting the pieces together. There also wasn’t a salary cap factor back then. My point still stands.Chia is failing, and failing badly.

godot10

#ItsAllTaylorHallsFault

Zelepukin

If you were a scout who had never watched the Oilers play before tonight and I told you that #58 is a healthy scratch almost every night, you’d make a strong push to acquire him.

russ99

Very dispiriting loss.

Would love to see the Oilers play as a 5 man unit again. So many breakdowns, cherry picking, giving up on the play, blown coverages, not caring enough to go to the wall, not knowing or caring to tie up the damn stick.

It’s every man for himself out there, not a team.

JD_Wry

Third game in four nights, in California, on Tabernac Saturday.

WCGW?

Zelepukin

Whelp, Feb 26th can’t come soon enough.

HT Joe

So that was regulation loss #26.

The Oilers lost only 26 games in regulation for all of the 2016-2017 season, but managed that feat in only 53 games this season.

The team is going to be a seller this trade deadline, but does ownership trust Chiarelli to make any more trades? Does Chia get gassed before the trade deadline?

We wait…

Newton

HenryDrix,

It was mentioned today on talk radio at some point get over the egos and sit him – just like the Hawks did with Seabrook. Show him you mean business. He is a shell of his former self so he needs to be accountable.

Newton

Another early goal, another 2-0 deficit, another “tough loss” will we screw up a top 5 pick? can we even get a 3rd for Maroon? How can the talking heads even consider re-signing this guy?

HenryDrix

Lucic playing about as nasty as Hall. Very dissappointing

D

Good night folks. See you tomorrow in San Jose.

HenryDrix

I wish someone would cut down Getzlaf. Lucic, Nurse, Kassian, Maroon. Are they all afraid of 15?

StixMalone

Tomorrow we visit the sharks. Tough trip to California. Can they show up in the first period and maybe get the first goal? I’m assuming Montoya starts but wouldn’t surprise me if Talbot is in…

OilClog

Benning is on the fast track to Europe

D

Old Timer:
Watching tonight’s game and several things come to mind.
1. The Oilers defensemen are terrible passers – without exception but Russell and Benning are the worst by far. The Oilers forwards are almost as bad at passing as their D men. The only players with a clue as forwards making passes are McDavid, Draisaitl, RNH, Puljujarvi and Strome. The rest have cement hands. Lucic is probably the worst. But it certainly reflects on the ineptitude of the Wingers
2. The Oilers players are not committed to playing physical hockey. Innumerable times they skate by a Duck player and don’t even bump them much less body check them. the only exception seems to be one shot delivered by Maroon on Cogliano.
3. They are not committed to making the strong, aggressive plays. They wave at Ducks with one hand on their stick. They try to make a cute play instead of the strong play. They try to make a fancy or pretty pass when they should be making short crisp passes.

I am a committed fan but I don’t get the impression that all the players are committed.

You hit it on the head here.

OilClog

Promote that man to wing!

StixMalone

Russel with redemption

wintoon

Watching tonight’s game and several things come to mind.
1. The Oilers defensemen are terrible passers – without exception but Russell and Benning are the worst by far. The Oilers forwards are almost as bad at passing as their D men. The only players with a clue as forwards making passes are McDavid, Draisaitl, RNH, Puljujarvi and Strome. The rest have cement hands. Lucic is probably the worst. But it certainly reflects on the ineptitude of the Wingers
2. The Oilers players are not committed to playing physical hockey. Innumerable times they skate by a Duck player and don’t even bump them much less body check them. the only exception seems to be one shot delivered by Maroon on Cogliano.
3. They are not committed to making the strong, aggressive plays. They wave at Ducks with one hand on their stick. They try to make a cute play instead of the strong play. They try to make a fancy or pretty pass when they should be making short crisp passes.

I am a committed fan but I don’t get the impression that all the players are committed.

StixMalone

Special teams let us down again…

D

I think the Ducks got more shots on goal for that PP than the Oilers 🙁

OilClog

Ben:
You’d think the formula for the coach would be pretty clear: Down 2? Put 97 and 29 back together.

When Bieksa is calling out the power play during intermission interviews, I don’t think the coaches employ a post 2007 formula maker.

Where’s Cheechoo when you need him

JD_Wry

Ben: Down 2? Put 97 and 29 back together.

It’s no use. When your favorite winger is gone with an injury, you might as well just play out the loss and get back to the hotel.

JimmyV1965

Let’s see. We have Kass, Lucic and Maroon. And Kesler is still running around out there like an idiot. Pathetic. Put JJ on that line. At least he’ll do something.

D

Lots of Oilers standing around.

Ben

You’d think the formula for the coach would be pretty clear: Down 2? Put 97 and 29 back together.

flyfish1168

Fgary:
If lucic smashed kesler in the face, I’d say he’s earned his 6 mill this year.

+2