Stray Cat Blues

Back in November of 2013, Craig MacTavish made a nifty little trade with the Calgary Flames. He sent defenseman Ladislav Smid and goalie Olivier Roy south for Laurent Brossoit and Roman Horak. Edmonton played Horak in Oklahoma City for most of that season (he did score a goal for the Oilers in January 2014), and then he settled in on a productive four-year career in the KHL. He is 27. Last I checked, Edmonton controls his NHL rights, but Horak’s career remains in Europe.

THE ATHLETIC!

Give The Athletic as a gift or get it yourself and join the fun! Offer is here, less than $4 a month! I find myself reading both the hockey (Willis, Dellow, Pronman, et cetera) and the baseball coverage a lot, it’s a pure pleasure to visit. We’ll sell you the whole seat, but you’ll only need the edge.

HEY BOGDAN!

  • Bogdan Yakimov:“Last year, I played in the pro league and I think I can play. I need more work, but after development camp, I will stay in Edmonton. In my head? One thought. NHL. NHL. NHL. So no problem if they say eat this, do that, I do it. No problem.” 

It was a problem, because Yakimov was sent to the minors and did not complete his entry deal. Yakimov was a slow train and maybe he doesn’t make the NHL, but Edmonton had 10 picks in 2013 and Darnell Nurse is the only man standing. Six picks in the top 96, Nurse is stone alone now that Anton Slepyshev is heading back to the KHL.

HOW TO FIX IT!

The only way to overcome a poor crop is to recover the next fall and the next and the next. Here are the players who turned pro beginning in the fall of 2014, and the men who will turn pro this fall and next:

  • 2014-15 Entry Deals (8 deals, 581 games): Leon Draisaitl (269), Iiro Pakarinen (134), Jujhar Khaira (94), Jordan Oesterle (80), Dillon Simpson (3), Bogdan Yakimov (1), Kellen Jones, Mitchell Moroz. Draisaitl emerged as a quality NHL player and Khaira took one giant leap last season toward becoming an NHL role player. If an NHL general manager delivered these two talents each season, that would have to be considered quality in my opinion.
  • 2015-16 Entry Deals (9 deals, 508 games): Connor McDavid (209), Darnell Nurse (197), Anton Slepyshev (102), Eetu Laurikainen, Joey Laleggia, Kyle Platzer, Greg Chase, Braden Christoffer, Ben Betker. The motherlode, McDavid is the strongest trump card in the world, leveling entire cities in a single bound. Nurse has emerged as a bona fide NHL player. If a general manager could deliver this every year, Stanley would buy a house in Brander Gardens.
  • 2016-17 Entry Deals (6 deals, 355 games): Matt Benning (135), Drake Caggiula (127), Jesse Puljujarvi (93), Patrick Russell, Nick Ellis, Jere Sallinen. Benning and Puljujarvi are likely to be solid contributors, if JP emerges as the player his tools suggest this rookie crop will be remembered well. The big issue here has been patience and it appears the Oilers see the long-term potential of the Finn. None of the 2014 draft picks were signed and began their entry deals in 2016 fall.
  • 2017-18 Entry Deals (6 deals, 18 games): Ethan Bear (18), Joe Gambardella, Caleb Jones, Ryan Mantha, Shane Starrett, Ziyat Paigin. It was a quiet year, although Kailer Yamamoto did get into nine games not listed here. When your team skips a beat in graduation, it means the following year has to be much stronger.
  • 2018-19 Entry Deals (9 deals): Kailer Yamamoto, Tyler Benson, Cooper Marody, William Lagesson, Nolan Vesey, Stuart Skinner, Cameron Hebig, Dylan Wells, Tyler Vesel. This is a much better group than last year, and Evan Bouchard might end up as part of this year’s grads. The good thing about the nine players listed here is their outer markers fit team needs. There are more reasonable bets in this group than in any season since 2014.
  • 2019-20 Entry Deals: Evan Bouchard, Joel Persson, Dmitri Samorukov, Kirill Maksimov, Ostap Safin. More names to add over the course of the next 10 months but a nice start. We can’t get ahead of ourselves with Maksimov and Safin but the arrows are good so far. Evan Bouchard should help the Oilers in a big way during his career.

Some of the 2018-19 deals listed here could slide and some not mentioned (Ostap Safin) could end up playing in pro hockey this winter. I give credit to Peter Chiarelli for working like a bugger in order to sign players in the spring and summer of 2016, because there wasn’t one damned thing coming through the system. It’s amazing to see what the 2014 draft did to 2016 summer. Devastating.

Good signs all around for Jesse Puljujarvi, the Oilers fortunes would improve greatly with a big step forward by the gigantic winger. He’s wildly popular in Edmonton already, if he can score 20 goals this coming season and sign a reasonable contract the Oilers will have a major piece of the future via the draft.

This is the McDavid cluster, I count three strong contributors (97, Leon, Nurse) and four guys who may or may not reach their outer markers. It’s important to build as strong a group as possible around the captain, this is your heart of the order.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A special show this morning and I can’t wait for it. Steve Lansky in studio from 10-11, we’ll talk about the old days (Steve was a television producer during the glory years and worked for both networks at that time) through modern times (we’ll chat about CFL live-mic, the Jays season and talk Oilers future). Matt Iwanyk will be around at 11 to talk Eskimos, and you can text 10-1260 with questions for either of my guests or to comment. @Lowetide on twitter, I will check this blog comments section for Lansky questions during the hour. Check out Steve’s website.

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143 Responses to "Stray Cat Blues"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    I’m super curious to see where Safin ends up – the Q or the AHL.

    I generally think that the AHL is always better for development than the CHL if its available but I think Safin has some maturing to do and maybe he’s not quite ready for pro hockey.

    I guess we’ll see how he does a rookie and main camp.

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    One key to the season for me is Jesse Puljujarvi solidifying himself as a top 6 RW, probably 2RW.

    History is literred with higher end European drafted players establishing themselves fully in the NHL in their draft plus 3 years – I see no reason why Jesse won’t follow that same path.

    One question at camp is if he starts at 2RW or 3RW.

  3. Professor Q says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    One key to the season for me is Jesse Puljujarvi solidifying himself as a top 6 RW, probably 2RW.

    History is literred with higher end European drafted players establishing themselves fully in the NHL in their draft plus 3 years – I see no reason why Jesse won’t follow that same path.

    One question at camp is if he starts at 2RW or 3RW.

    I think that line has the potential to be a Big Body Domination Line.

    Draisaitl (German Gretzky-Sundin) with Puljüjarvi and hopefully Benson eventually (Benson is likely the closest, and isn’t a big body, so feel free to sub-in Maksimov or Safin)?

    With Nugent-Hopkins – McDavid – Åberg/Rattie for now but eventually Yamamoto?

  4. 36 percent body fat says:

    slepy was a casualty of caggulia, why i dont know

    bog was a casualty of his agent.

    hopefully JP is not a casualty of the coach and so forth (their focus on culture and character over hockey skill is alarming and damaging this team)

  5. frjohnk says:

    The 2013 draft was interesting that when looking at those players draft +1 and draft +2. Some of them looked to be promising.

    Draft +1
    -Slepyshev and Bodgan had a good world jrs. I remember Ray Ferraro saying some glowing things about Slepyshev
    -Chase had 85 points
    -Houck hit 34 goals

    draft +2
    -Platzer scored 81 points

    -Marco Roy was injured for both years after draft but it seemed like if he could get healthy that there was a player there.

    Other than Slepyshev, all of these guys are just AHL/ECHL depth players.

    Unfortunate that none of these players made it, I was sure that at least one would have made it. Some of them had “good arrows” draft +1 and draft +2.

  6. J-Bo says:

    I really like this look at prospects. It gives Chiarelli the credit he deserves for his work on our prospect pool inside AND outside the draft. In my mind he has 2 major black Mark’s from the trades that shall not be named and a regular size black mark from not using the cap room last summer/last year appropriately. Will the excellent work in prospect procurement (and hopefully development) ever outweigh the black spots? As LT often says, we wait…

  7. OriginalPouzar says:

    I still smile when I look at the up arrows from the 2017 draft – so far so good.

    Has Oil Country gone back and given Chiarelli any credit after the fact for his 2018 trade deadline?

    He got a bit of praise for the Letestu for Aberg trade but I think Aberg is a bit of a hidden gem – if the coaching staff gives him the opportunity, I think Aberg could produce in the top 6/middle 6 and, at league minimum, provide a huge value contract for this team.

    Moreso, I think Chiarelli deserves some credit after the fact for the Maroon trade – given the returns was JD Dudek (who I don’t consider a real prospect) and a third round pick in 2019, most fans seemed very underwhelmed and disappointed. Chiarelli was clear that he never intended to use the draft pick to draft and he was true to his word and flipped it for Marody – Marody has become a top 5 prospect in the organization and looks like a real good bet for NHL games (maybe even this year) and an NHL career. That was a great trade.

  8. LadiesloveSmid says:

    frjohnk,

    Forgot Chase had 85P in his D+1, makes me temper expectations on Maksimov.

    Also LT, I suspect McLeod will turn pro in 2019/20 as well,being a late ’99.

  9. Bruce McCurdy says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I still smile when I look at the up arrows from the 2017 draft – so far so good.

    Has Oil Country gone back and given Chiarelli any credit after the fact for his 2018 trade deadline?

    He got a bit of praise for the Letestu for Aberg trade but I think Aberg is a bit of a hidden gem – if the coaching staff gives him the opportunity, I think Aberg could produce in the top 6/middle 6 and, at league minimum, provide a huge value contract for this team.

    Moreso, I think Chiarelli deserves some credit after the fact for the Maroon trade – given the returns was JD Dudek (who I don’t consider a real prospect) and a third round pick in 2019, most fans seemed very underwhelmed and disappointed.Chiarelli was clear that he never intended to use the draft pick to draft and he was true to his word and flipped it for Marody – Marody has become a top 5 prospect in the organization and looks like a real good bet for NHL games (maybe even this year) and an NHL career. That was a great trade.

    He also got a third round pick for Brandon Davidson, currently unsigned.

  10. frjohnk says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    frjohnk,

    Forgot Chase had 85P in his D+1, makes me temper expectations on Maksimov.

    Also LT, I suspect McLeod will turn pro in 2019/20 as well,being a late ’99.

    Curtis Hamilton is another guy drafted a few years earlier who had 82 points in 62 games and played world jrs for Canada draft +1. I thought there was a player there too. Wasnt even close.

  11. Professor Q says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    frjohnk,

    Forgot Chase had 85P in his D+1, makes me temper expectations on Maksimov.

    Also LT, I suspect McLeod will turn pro in 2019/20 as well,being a late ’99.

    Chase was *half a year older (drafted when he was 18 years and ~7 months old, while Maksimov was drafted when was 18 years and ~1 month old) and played 10 more games than Maksimov in their respective draft +1 seasons, though.

    Hamilton, Pitlick, and Martindale, though…let us hope that Benson, McLeod, and Maksimov fare much better than those three (four, including Chase).

  12. frjohnk says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I still smile when I look at the up arrows from the 2017 draft – so far so good.

    Has Oil Country gone back and given Chiarelli any credit after the fact for his 2018 trade deadline?

    He got a bit of praise for the Letestu for Aberg trade but I think Aberg is a bit of a hidden gem – if the coaching staff gives him the opportunity, I think Aberg could produce in the top 6/middle 6 and, at league minimum, provide a huge value contract for this team.

    Moreso, I think Chiarelli deserves some credit after the fact for the Maroon trade – given the returns was JD Dudek (who I don’t consider a real prospect) and a third round pick in 2019, most fans seemed very underwhelmed and disappointed.Chiarelli was clear that he never intended to use the draft pick to draft and he was true to his word and flipped it for Marody – Marody has become a top 5 prospect in the organization and looks like a real good bet for NHL games (maybe even this year) and an NHL career. That was a great trade.

    I think getting a pick for Davidson was good.
    Aberg for Letestu was good.
    Maroon for a 3rd round pick and a B prospect was not good.

    Maroon had 4 goals in 56 games ( while playing half that time in the top 6 with the Ducks) and we gave up a 4th rounder (93rd overall) and a B prospect ( Martin Gernat) So his value was low and we picked him up from the scrap heap.

    Maroon in Edmonton had 41 goals in 138 games. His value was higher leaving Edmonton than when he was leaving Anaheim. The Oilers basically received in return what they gave up for him.

    I never agreed that the Oilers should have gotten the Patrick Eaves return, ( which was a conditional 1st rounder) but a 3rd rounder? Not good.

    If you are talking about the trade of the 3rd rounder for Maroody? Then a good trade for the Oilers.

  13. frjohnk says:

    Professor Q: Chase was a year older and played 10 more games than Maksimov, though.

    Only 5 months difference when looking at draft +1 years.

  14. innercitysmytty says:

    frjohnk,

    His contract status at the time of the two trades, plus the Ducks willingness to retain salary explains why the returns were not that much different.

  15. godot10 says:

    The cupboard was bare in 2016 b ecause of the Reinhart trade blunder. Partly an “own goal”.

    Horan was 27 on July 1, so he should be free of the Oilers and a UFA.

  16. godot10 says:

    frjohnk: I think getting a pick for Davidson was good.
    Aberg for Letestu was good.
    Maroon for a 3rd round pick and a B prospect was not good.

    Maroon had 4 goals in 56 games ( while playing half that time in the top 6 with the Ducks) and we gave up a 4th rounder (93rd overall) and a B prospect ( Martin Gernat)So his value was low and we picked him up from the scrap heap.

    Maroon in Edmonton had 41 goals in 138 games. His value was higher leaving Edmonton than when he was leaving Anaheim.The Oilers basically received in return what they gave up for him.

    I never agreed that the Oilers should have gotten the Patrick Eaves return, ( which was a conditional 1st rounder) but a 3rd rounder? Not good.

    If you are talking about the trade of the 3rd rounder for Maroody?Then a good trade for the Oilers.

    McDavid wasn’t coming with Maroon in the trade. Why should anyone have paid for McDavid’s points and goals that were attributed to Maroon.

    We saw what the market thought of him during the summer.

  17. Professor Q says:

    godot10:
    The cupboard was bare in 2016 b ecause of the Reinhart trade blunder. Partly an “own goal”.

    Horan was 27 on July 1, so he should be free of the Oilers and a UFA.

    It really was a bad trade, and luckily the cupboard wasn’t as bare as it could have been with apparent trending upward hits on a lot of other later picks from 2015-2018.

    If those upwards arrows don’t happen…along with bad big trades…Chia is out a lot sooner. And who knows who his replacement would have been without Gretzky here.

  18. Westchester Oil says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I still smile when I look at the up arrows from the 2017 draft – so far so good.

    Has Oil Country gone back and given Chiarelli any credit after the fact for his 2018 trade deadline?

    He got a bit of praise for the Letestu for Aberg trade but I think Aberg is a bit of a hidden gem – if the coaching staff gives him the opportunity, I think Aberg could produce in the top 6/middle 6 and, at league minimum, provide a huge value contract for this team.

    Moreso, I think Chiarelli deserves some credit after the fact for the Maroon trade – given the returns was JD Dudek (who I don’t consider a real prospect) and a third round pick in 2019, most fans seemed very underwhelmed and disappointed.Chiarelli was clear that he never intended to use the draft pick to draft and he was true to his word and flipped it for Marody – Marody has become a top 5 prospect in the organization and looks like a real good bet for NHL games (maybe even this year) and an NHL career. That was a great trade.

    Chiarelli report card:

    Little moves good.

    Big moves bad.

    Unfortunately the big moves outweigh the little moves.

  19. VOR says:

    Last night I had a bunch of physicists over to my place. Some didn’t work in physics but allied fields like Engineering Physics, Meteorology, Math, etc. All of them are retired now.

    As he invariably does Heisenberg came up. Despite his other claims to fame, which are numerous, we were discussing his believe that the Universe is a web of probabilities. As we’ve aged each of us has come to a more mystic view, the same one Heisenberg came to as he aged.

    In that web of probabilities some things give the appearance of being fated.

    Heisenberg was fond of pointing to the day Moe Berg decided not to shoot him. He called it his own uncertainty principle.

    Berg, the former professional baseball catcher turned spy was sent to listen to Heisenberg speak. This is later in the war. His orders were simple. If Heisenberg said anything that implied the German Nuclear program (he was at that point a critical scientist and leader on the German team) was close to building a bomb Berg was to shoot him dead.

    There Berg is listening to a presentation the vast majority of which he couldn’t understand. Yet he concluded the German’s weren’t close. Which by the way is wrong. They were. They just had a problem they didn’t no about. His name was Werner Karl Heisenberg. The great physicist was leading the German effort off on wild goose chases.

    When Berg decided not to shoot he guaranteed the German’s wouldn’t win the race to the Atom Bomb. But he didn’t know that.

    Now all you need to know was it wasn’t supposed to be Berg. He didn’t know enough physics to complete the mission. Any physicist listening to Heisenberg would have been certain the Germans were very close. But hundreds of decisions went into the final decision to send Moe Berg. Those decisions arose from hundreds of events.

    Moe Berg’s decision was based on a few hours over a few days he spent talking with Heisenberg. He was never supposed to meet the target. But Heisenberg approached him. The two quickly became friends. Berg was a simple guy. You don’t shoot your friends.

    And so on a long series of low probability events the fate of the world hung. Or as Heisenberg put it, “It was fated to be.”

    I get that the Oilers have been bad for a very long time. But I can’t shake the feeling a new dynasty is fated to be. For that to be so one of the young men we are discussing here will not just exceed expectations. He will have to shatter them.

  20. Richard S.S. says:

    At some point a new GM must trust the competence of his staff. That’s true of every GM, including Peter Chiarelli. The Oilers desparately needed better Defense. So there are a few things that people might forget that I should mention.

    Griffin Reinhart was hot D with a bullet for about his first two years, did not progress at all for about the next two, then he started to fall off. The Oilers’ Staff didn’t see the problem, they only saw the good, so most gave thumbs up. They lied to Peter Chiarelli. Almost no one makes that distinction.

    There was no way Peter Chiarelli was giving up his next two picks for Cam Talbot, not to that GM. Boston’s panic, another GM’s greed and a staff’s incompetence set the Oilers back. To easy to blame the GM.

  21. frjohnk says:

    Not sure if it was posted before but Dom at the Athletic had a post about NHL front office confidence amongst fans.
    A poll of 2000 fans

    A list of
    Drafting/Developing
    Cap Managment
    Roster Building
    Trading
    Free Agency
    Vision
    Oilers come in well below average in each ranking

    The worst was Ottawa ( even though they were only 13 months removed from almost making the finals, the drop has been amazingly bad)
    Followed by Montreal, then Edmonton and then Vancouver.

    The poll was separated into two groups, public opinion ( other teams fanbases) and fanbase ( Oiler fans)

    Other teams fanbases thought a bit more highly of the Oilers front office. They rated Oilers managment 28th overall. Oiler fans rated Oiler managment 29th overall.

  22. hunter1909 says:

    Hunter1909″s trade analysis: A big fat F for the MacLowesers, and here’s why:

    Nifty trade as in the Petry getting “challenged” by on the then learning yet preaching the NHL isn’t a development league for players(thoroughly despicable) MacT mold.

    Nifty as in: Oilers losing a popular and decent player who criticized the Lowe+MacT “swamp” for essentially…nothing much.

    Memo to Katz’s draft day son: It’s Uncle Kevin Lowe and Uncle MacT who are screwing your Dad’s hockey team right now. In fact, they’ve been running it into the ground ever since Lowe took over the GM job. Before you were born Edmonton wasn’t on so many no-trade lists, like today = the reason – no Lowe+MacT who everyone despises.

  23. hunter1909 says:

    frjohnk: Other teams fanbases thought a bit more highly of the Oilers front office. They rated Oilers managment 28th overall. Oiler fans rated Oiler managment 29th overall.

    Very droll.

  24. Wilde says:

    Today’s installment of the video reviews of Leon Draisaitl’s season at centre was to be of the game on December 12 vs CBJ, but the 7-2 blowout offered so little of actual prolonged defensive zone play that it would have been extremely short, so I decided to mix it up and showcase Leon’s fantastic transitional play that took place during the game in a video compilation:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/2018/08/sometimes-sayings-are-just-said-part_3.html

  25. hunter1909 says:

    frjohnk:
    Not sure if it was posted before but Dom at the Athletic had a post about NHL front office confidence amongst fans.
    A poll of 2000 fans

    A list of
    Drafting/Developing
    Cap Managment
    Roster Building
    Trading
    Free Agency
    Vision
    Oilers come in well below average in each ranking

    The worst was Ottawa ( even though they were only 13 months removed from almost making the finals, the drop has been amazingly bad)
    Followed by Montreal, then Edmonton and then Vancouver.

    The poll was separated into two groups, public opinion ( other teams fanbases) and fanbase ( Oiler fans)

    Other teams fanbases thought a bit more highly of the Oilers front office.They rated Oilers managment 28th overall.Oiler fans rated Oiler managment 29th overall.

    They really need to start separating drafting from developing.

    Oilers for example draft 1st overall yet cannot even develop anyone else, and then even screw up some of these(Yaks, RNH). Or run a future Hart trophy winner out of town with the usual MSM grumbling to help his egress.

    Note: The Hall crack might be uncalled for as he was always a very good to great Oiler. But I’ve always been partial to shooting fish in barrels.

  26. hunter1909 says:

    Hints for developing players:

    Ice a winning AHL team.

    Philadelphia regularly compete for the AHL trophy, while turning out an endless procession of good quality NHLers.

    Oilers never even make the AHL playoffs, and make excuses.

  27. Bruce McCurdy says:

    frjohnk:
    Not sure if it was posted before but Dom at the Athletic had a post about NHL front office confidence amongst fans.
    A poll of 2000 fans

    A list of
    Drafting/Developing
    Cap Managment
    Roster Building
    Trading
    Free Agency
    Vision
    Oilers come in well below average in each ranking

    The worst was Ottawa ( even though they were only 13 months removed from almost making the finals, the drop has been amazingly bad)
    Followed by Montreal, then Edmonton and then Vancouver.

    The poll was separated into two groups, public opinion ( other teams fanbases) and fanbase ( Oiler fans)

    Other teams fanbases thought a bit more highly of the Oilers front office.They rated Oilers managment 28th overall.Oiler fans rated Oiler managment 29th overall.

    Ottawa who potentially traded the Jack Hughes draft pick plus a whole bunch of other quality assets for a guy who might walk as a UFA a week after The Jack Hughes Draft?

    Ottawa who just “challenged” their best forward with a one-year pact to take him to UFA?

    I’ll take the guy who locked up his two best players for maximum term ten days out of ten, thanks.

  28. Wilde says:

    Wilde,

    Also, a thought on line combos:

    In this video you see Leon Draisaitl excel at being the primary carrier though the neutral zone on a line with Khaira and Strome.

    A common refrain is that you can’t have two guys who ‘like to carry the puck’ on one line, but we all know how well Leon and McDavid play together, turns out they both make great carriers too.

    I think, just like it’s optimal to have two guys who are good on opposite handed faceoffs and two guys who are good at playing down low, it’s also optimal to have two end-to-end guys on a each line, too. It adds options for your team and takes away options on the opposing team.

    This is why I’m very bullish on putting Puljujarvi with Leon. 98 might not get 80+% of the carry opportunities like he does when he plays with Strome and Lucic, but having them alternate just based on who’s where, when, could prove to be deadly as it quickens the pace(you don’t have to reset as often).

    Puljujarvi also fits into the faceoff mould, too, and he’s certainly going to have the size and strength for it. He’s also got good reach and anticipation to play F1/F2. If you’ve been following my series, you’ve read me talking about having Draisaitl take all the responsibilities down low as opposed to playing F3 from when he was with Strome in December. Later I’ll get to that when he played centre away in March, but already there’s been times when he’s shown great defensive hockey IQ, he just needs more reps.

    Pairing Leon and Jesse for faceoffs and defensive zone play would be suffocating to play against once they both hit their prime. You want them to have an education by the time they get there.

    I’d say the third on that line should be a speedster, a first-forechecker puck-hound. Yamamoto fits but he’s a RW. Any suggestions anyone?

  29. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Wilde: I’d say the third on that line should be a speedster, a first-forechecker puck-hound. Yamamoto fits but he’s a RW. Any suggestions anyone?

    Drake Caggiula??

  30. Bag of Pucks says:

    frjohnk,

    I wonder how much of those poll results end up painting Chiarelli with the residual brush of the OBC?

    Getting 3 straight 1OVs and staying in the cellar has tarnished the Oiler brand significantly. Going to take a while to dig out from under that? Tons of jealousy over getting McDavid as well, especially in other Canadian markets.

  31. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Buffalo kind of treaded water losing ROR and adding Skinner IMO. Added much needed depth in Sobotka, Berglund, and Sheary though. Have 3 1st rounders next summer and some interesting young talent joining the team.

    If Dahlin is elite and they use 1-2 first rounders to round out that D, they are looking quite good.

  32. Wilde says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Drake Caggiula??

    Bruce…..

  33. JimmyV1965 says:

    frjohnk: I think getting a pick for Davidson was good.
    Aberg for Letestu was good.
    Maroon for a 3rd round pick and a B prospect was not good.

    Maroon had 4 goals in 56 games ( while playing half that time in the top 6 with the Ducks) and we gave up a 4th rounder (93rd overall) and a B prospect ( Martin Gernat)So his value was low and we picked him up from the scrap heap.

    Maroon in Edmonton had 41 goals in 138 games. His value was higher leaving Edmonton than when he was leaving Anaheim.The Oilers basically received in return what they gave up for him.

    I never agreed that the Oilers should have gotten the Patrick Eaves return, ( which was a conditional 1st rounder) but a 3rd rounder? Not good.

    If you are talking about the trade of the 3rd rounder for Maroody?Then a good trade for the Oilers.

    Sometimes I think the NHL is run by a bunch of incompetent GMs. Maroon gets a third at the deadline, Grabner gets a second and Nash gets a first. Maroon is simply a better player today than both these guys. But Nash is a big name, has a reputation and he’s from New York so he gets overvalued. Grabner is incredibly fast so he gets overvalued too, even though he is almost clueless when it comes to using that speed.

    Same thing with free agency. Grabner gets three at 3.5 and Maroon gets one at 1.75. I really like Chayka, but that was a bad deal.

  34. Georgexs says:

    Here’s something.

    In 16-17, 30 NHL teams used a total of 888 skaters.

    In 17-18, 31 NHL teams used a total of 890 skaters.

    I didn’t expect that. I thought an extra team would mean extra roster spots and a corresponding increase in the number of players used at the NHL level. But this wasn’t the case. The total number of skaters stayed on level with what we’ve seen for the past few seasons:

    13-14, 886
    14-15, 882
    15-16, 898
    16-17, 888
    17-18, 890

    The same number of players spread over more teams, more games, more minutes. This might be part of the reason that scoring went up last season (along with a demographic shift to younger players and more effective power plays). There were only so many NHL-ready players and many of them were marginal. The weaker ones in the group saw more ice time. Creating more opportunity and mismatches for skilled players.

  35. Oilman99 says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    Buffalo kind of treaded water losing ROR and adding Skinner IMO. Added much needed depth in Sobotka, Berglund, and Sheary though. Have 3 1st rounders next summer and some interesting young talent joining the team.

    If Dahlin is elite and they use 1-2 first rounders to round out that D, they are looking quite good.

    ROR for Skinner is drowning, not treading water. ROR strong on face offs,and excellent in d-zone. They will miss him dearly.

  36. Oilman99 says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I’m super curious to see where Safin ends up – the Q or the AHL.

    I generally think that the AHL is always better for development than the CHL if its available but I think Safin has some maturing to do and maybe he’s not quite ready for pro hockey.

    I guess we’ll see how he does a rookie and main camp.

    Make sure the kid gets maximum ice time, give him the year back in the Q. He should have even more confidence after a good year back in junior.

  37. Professor Q says:

    JimmyV1965: Sometimes I think the NHL is run by a bunch of incompetent GMs. Maroon gets a third at the deadline, Grabner gets a second and Nash gets a first. Maroon is simply a better player today than both these guys. But Nash is a big name, has a reputation and he’s from New York so he gets overvalued. Grabner is incredibly fast so he gets overvalued too, even though he is almost clueless when it comes to using that speed.

    Same thing with free agency. Grabner gets three at 3.5 and Maroon gets one at 1.75.I really like Chayka, but that was a bad deal.

    Rick Nash is from Brampton…

  38. Professor Q says:

    Oilman99: Make sure the kid gets maximum ice time, give him the year back in the Q. He should have even more confidence after a good year back in junior.

    Especially with a good organization such as Saint John. No need to rush him to Bakersfield/Wichita.

  39. hunter1909 says:

    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

  40. Professor Q says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    Isn’t O’Reilly on the Blues? Buffalo traded Pu and draft picks for Skinner, not ROR. They traded ROR for Berglund, Sobotka, Thompson, a 1st, and a 2nd. Could work out for them, considering ROR admitted to losing his heart for the game and not trying for Buffalo. Get that out ASAP.

    If you look at it as the trade-and-trade, I think that alone doesn’t speak to the situation as a whole, nor the core issue as to why Buffalo remains floundering.

    Why are players losing their heart playing there (well, I guess Kane is just Kane, really, so his own issues might not count)? A culture and organizational problem that is deeper than mere trade issues.

  41. Bag of Pucks says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    I think it’s poor what Buffalo is doing if you like at it in terms of players out vs players in.

    If you look at it in terms of contracts out vs contracts in, it seems like they want to push reset on their team in a big way. O’Reilly was signed through 2022-23 at $7.5 AAV. Skinner goes UFA at the end of this season. They obviously see Eichel, Reinhart and Dahlin as their core but they need a LOT of pieces beyond that. Getting some cap flexibility would seem to be a good idea with that in mind.

  42. godot10 says:

    Wilde:
    Wilde,

    Also, a thought on line combos:

    In this video you see Leon Draisaitl excel at being the primary carrier though the neutral zone on a line with Khaira and Strome.

    A common refrain is that you can’t have two guys who ‘like to carry the puck’ on one line, but we all know how well Leon and McDavid play together, turns out they both make great carriers too.

    I think, just like it’s optimal to have two guys who are good on opposite handed faceoffs and two guys who are good at playing down low, it’s also optimal to have two end-to-end guys on a each line, too. It adds options for your team and takes away options on the opposing team.

    This is why I’m very bullish on putting Puljujarvi with Leon. 98 might not get 80+% of the carry opportunities like he does when he plays with Strome and Lucic, but having them alternate just based on who’s where, when, could prove to be deadly as it quickens the pace(you don’t have to reset as often).

    Puljujarvi also fits into the faceoff mould, too, and he’s certainly going to have the size and strength for it. He’s also got good reach and anticipation to play F1/F2. If you’ve been following my series, you’ve read me talking about having Draisaitl take all the responsibilities down low as opposed to playing F3 from when he was with Strome in December. Later I’ll get to that when he played centre away in March, but already there’s been times when he’s shown great defensive hockey IQ, he just needs more reps.

    Pairing Leon and Jesse for faceoffs and defensive zone play would be suffocating to play against once they both hit their prime. You want them to have an education by the time they get there.

    I’d say the third on that line should be a speedster, a first-forechecker puck-hound. Yamamoto fits but he’s a RW. Any suggestions anyone?

    If Rieder isn’t with McDavid, he is the guy.

  43. godot10 says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    O’Reilly didn’t want to be involved in a rebuild any longer. And one is leaving out Bergland and Sobotka and the other depth players Buffalo added.

  44. Wilde says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    They won the Skinner trade, but lost the ROR trade.

    ROR trade says they’re delaying the rebuild, Skinner trade says they’re trying to quicken it.

    All expending assets without addressing the D.

    I don’t know what the plan is.

    Now, here’s what they could be doing:

    Trade sub-par package of futures for Skinner by leveraging the NTC situation and the culture change paradigm

    >then>

    Pump Skinners numbers and retain salary on a trade at the deadline to a contender to upgrade on the package of futures you sent out for him

  45. Professor Q says:

    Wilde: They won the Skinner trade, but lost the ROR trade.

    ROR trade says they’re delaying the rebuild, Skinner trade says they’re trying to quicken it.

    All expending assets without addressing the D.

    I don’t know what the plan is.

    Now, here’s what they could be doing:

    Trade sub-par package of futures for Skinner by leveraging the NTC situation and the culture change paradigm

    >then>

    Pump Skinners numbers and retain salary on a trade at the deadline to a contender to upgrade on the package of futures you sent out for him

    They didn’t expend assets in the ROR trade, though. They gained them.

  46. Wilde says:

    Professor Q: They didn’t expend assets in the ROR trade, though. They gained them.

    I mean, by quantity, sure?

    Trading ROR is expending an asset. Just because you get something back doesn’t mean you’re not expending assets. Just because you got two burgers for your eight dollars doesn’t mean you didn’t spend eight dollars.

    ROR is a more valuable asset, in a trade for a top-4 D, than what they got back, collectively or individually.

    A top-6 centre of ROR’s calibre could have been used in a Johansen for Jones type deal is what I’m saying.

  47. Todd Macallan says:

    VOR,

    Truly fascinating. That may be my favourite story on this blog, and I’ve been here for more than a few years. Thanks for this.

  48. who says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    Really tough call in my opinion.
    Depends on how well ROR ages. He is a really good second line center right now but the league keeps getting faster and skating is the weakest part of his game.
    It would be different if they were a cup contender but they are not. They are a few years away and who knows how good ROR will be by then.
    It also depends on what they can re sign Skinner for or what they can get for him at the deadline.
    I like where Buffalo is going right now.

  49. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Wilde:
    Today’s installment of the video reviews of Leon Draisaitl’s season at centre was to be of the game on December 12 vs CBJ, but the 7-2 blowout offered so little of actual prolonged defensive zone play that it would have been extremely short, so I decided to mix it up and showcase Leon’s fantastic transitional play that took place during the game in a video compilation:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/2018/08/sometimes-sayings-are-just-said-part_3.html

    Just caught up on your series to date. I really like the idea of drilling deep on one player, especially one as important as Leon.

  50. leadfarmer says:

    Cody Ceci got 4.3 mil in arbitration.
    Not signing Nurse to an 8 year deal on July 1 was a huge blunder.

  51. Wilde says:

    VOR,

    When I was watching the Stanley Cup being handed over to Alex Ovechkin this past June, in the moment as he went to hoist it for the first time, while I thought I was (and I really was) completely enraptured and emotionally wrapped up in the happening… my minds eye flickered the scene of 97 doing the same, unprompted and ever so briefly. I’ve been more relaxed about the Oilers’ future in the short while it’s been since.

  52. Richard S.S. says:

    On the Oilers’ Roster, how many minutes some one plays can be controlled. On the AHL Bakersfield Roster, how many minutes some one plays can be controlled. On any other Team, it’s easier trying to stay dry while pissing into the wind than it is to control your own players minutes – it’s not your Team.

    The best policy is to promote success when it’s earned. Playing on Teams the Oilers control means Players get the minutes they need/deserve. On other Teams, they must agree with your course of action for the Player. They must them carry out your course of action for the Player. And cows will sprout wings and fly before that usually happens.

  53. Bruce McCurdy says:

    leadfarmer:
    Cody Ceci got 4.3 mil in arbitration.
    Not signing Nurse to an 8 year deal on July 1 was a huge blunder.

    They could have signed Nurse to an eight year extension LAST July 01, like they essentially did with McDavid. Not sure when the “act” of not signing him can be considered a blunder.

  54. JimmyV1965 says:

    Wilde:
    Today’s installment of the video reviews of Leon Draisaitl’s season at centre was to be of the game on December 12 vs CBJ, but the 7-2 blowout offered so little of actual prolonged defensive zone play that it would have been extremely short, so I decided to mix it up and showcase Leon’s fantastic transitional play that took place during the game in a video compilation:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/2018/08/sometimes-sayings-are-just-said-part_3.html

    Good job Wilde. You’re kicking it with your video work. Frickin love Drai. When he’s on he’s such a beast. He’s just a load to deal with. I think he has the potential to be the second best C in the western conference. Yet maybe he doesn’t hit his upper ceiling and settles in as a great 2C. Crossing my fingers.

  55. JimmyV1965 says:

    Professor Q: Rick Nash is from Brampton…

    Was referring to playing in New York.

  56. Wilde says:

    Bruce McCurdy: Just caught up on your series to date. I really like the idea of drilling deep on one player, especially one as important as Leon.

    Thank you kindly. I plan on doing the same for Yamamoto after, seeing as there’s a lot of controversy over what exactly went right and wrong in his 9 game stint, and additionally whether or not it was warranted in the first place. So I’m thinking of putting together the pre season play with the 9 actual games as well. The idea is since it’s been so long since these things happened, the video really helps over just memory and it’s also a bit easier to evaluate once we’re out of the journey of the season itself.

  57. leadfarmer says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    Pretty much when we had enough data to show that he’s a good top 4 defenseman and the price for players was going to skyrocket. I’ve been saying for a while now that prices were going to get crazy this offseason and I have absolutely no connection to happenings in the nhl so I’m sure someone involved with the team was able to predict similarly

  58. JimmyV1965 says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    On paper ROR to Skinner is a massive downgrade. But we don’t know what we don’t know. Was he part of the problem in Buffalo? He’s always touted for leadership, but he’s been to the playoffs twice in nine years and one of those was his rookie year. He’s played on bad teams mind ya, but he’s certainly not leading teams to the playoffs.

    It sure kills them at 2C though. The Sabres are banking a lot on Middlestadt. And we know how that works out.

  59. Bruce McCurdy says:

    leadfarmer:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    Pretty much when we had enough data to show that he’s a good top 4 defenseman and the price for players was going to skyrocket.I’ve been saying for a while now that prices were going to get crazy this offseason and I have absolutely no connection to happenings in the nhl so I’m sure someone involved with the team was able to predict similarly

    Remotely possible someone associated with the player might also have been able to predict this.

  60. digger50 says:

    Wilde:
    Today’s installment of the video reviews of Leon Draisaitl’s season at centre was to be of the game on December 12 vs CBJ, but the 7-2 blowout offered so little of actual prolonged defensive zone play that it would have been extremely short, so I decided to mix it up and showcase Leon’s fantastic transitional play that took place during the game in a video compilation:

    https://petropraxis.blogspot.com/2018/08/sometimes-sayings-are-just-said-part_3.html

    I am enjoying your video review work, particularly as you focus on Leon, who is constantly overshadowed by Connor, so nice to see.

    I completely agree Leon is masterful at gaining the puck and hanging on to it. He rarely then throws it away, but holds it and looks for an outlet. When Connor is on the ice and sees Leon about to gain possession l he’s off, he’s knows the pass is coming. Exciting to watch.

    When Leon is having a bad game however, it’s generally when he’s forechecked hard and forced. This is when he makes some of those oh so noticeable giveaways.

    In assigning wingers – if Connor can find another right winger who he has confidence will gain possession and get the puck up, allowing him to start breaking out with speed, that would be his ideal.

    Drai needs the opposite, a speedy winger who can take that outlet pass and transition.

    As I said, enjoying your work here.

  61. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    Not picking on anyone as this is just a general comment.

    Maroon was going to St Louis and everyone knew it. St Louis was a seller this year and other teams rightly thought why offer assets for a few weeks of player whose destination is set and who also needs back surgery? Fans endlessly pontificating on trades based on what they think a player’s value is and zero actual information on the actual market is well……..kinda pointless.

  62. Wilde says:

    JimmyV1965: I think he has the potential to be the second best C in the western conference.

    This sounded a little extreme at first, but looking at the WC… I’d say this is the competition:

    McDavid
    MacKinnon*
    Scheifele
    Kopitar
    Getzlaf *
    Seguin
    Couture
    Staal *
    O’Reilly
    Karlsson
    Toews *
    Monahan **
    Carter *

    * Guys who are 30+

    ** The only guy the same age as Draisaitl.

    Common denominators here are better linemates than Drai had last year, and experience advantage.

    I’d say besides 97 MacKinnon’s probably out of reach. That’s it.

  63. Paddy Morans Jockstrap says:

    leadfarmer:
    Cody Ceci got 4.3 mil in arbitration.
    Not signing Nurse to an 8 year deal on July 1 was a huge blunder.

    Chiarelli would run to Nurse’s house with pen in hand if he signed a longterm deal at that amount.

  64. leadfarmer says:

    Bruce McCurdy,

    But seems like more frustration from player camp that this deal has not happened so I would say that is less likely.
    This org has been crazy about Nurse for a long time. Just listening to the org you would guess they would have locked him up ASAP. The handling of his contract is very strange indeed

  65. Wilde says:

    digger50,

    Appreciate your and everyone else’s feedback, and I think you nailed it on the part of the speedy winger: They have to be good at taking the pass. A few more than a few times his outlet passes end up fumbled and wasted, this team needs more puck skills at speed. More forward picks like McLeod.

  66. godot10 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: They could have signed Nurse to an eight year extension LAST July 01, like they essentially did with McDavid. Not sure when the “act” of not signing him can be considered a blunder.

    I doubt Nurse was interested in signing last summer.

  67. Professor Q says:

    Wilde:
    VOR,

    When I was watching the Stanley Cup being handed over to Alex Ovechkin this past June, in the moment as he went to hoist it for the first time, while I thought I was (and I really was) completely enraptured and emotionally wrapped up in the happening… my minds eye flickered the scene of 97 doing the same, unprompted and ever so briefly. I’ve been more relaxed about the Oilers’ future in the short while it’s been since.

    And have you seen his Gretzky-Smyth flow now?

    Those hairs are destined for greatness.

  68. tileguy says:

    Speaking of the CFL, and missing LT’s show, what was the consensus on “live-mic”? Personally, i find it distracting and don’t like it.

  69. Lowetide says:

    tileguy:
    Speaking of the CFL, and missing LT’s show, what was the consensus on “live-mic”? Personally, i find it distracting and don’t like it.

    Many agree with you.

  70. John Chambers says:

    Wilde:
    digger50,

    Appreciate your and everyone else’s feedback, and I think you nailed it on the part of the speedy winger: They have to be good at taking the pass. A few more than a few times his outlet passes end up fumbled and wasted, this team needs more puck skills at speed. More forward picks like McLeod.

    I’m not a guy to deliver you specific TOI and WOWY stats, but man it sure seemed like Drake Caggiula got fed a lot of outlet passes from 97 and 29 which rolled off his stick. Lucic same.

    Having competent wingers who can support the breakout will drive the team’s success or lack thereof.

    Assuming Nuge and Rieder are up to the task, it means we need a couple of Puljujarvi, Rattie, Aberg, or Khaira to reliably do the same. Our Centre talent was absolutely squandered last season.

  71. SwedishPoster says:

    VOR:

    As he invariably does Heisenberg came up.

    Heh. The engineering physicist in me liked this.

  72. Justthestatsman says:

    tileguy:
    Speaking of the CFL, and missing LT’s show, what was the consensus on “live-mic”? Personally, i find it distracting and don’t like it.

    Not sure what “ice” is code for, but Mike Reilly sure yelled it a lot when he was behind centre.

  73. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    leadfarmer:
    Bruce McCurdy,

    Pretty much when we had enough data to show that he’s a good top 4 defenseman and the price for players was going to skyrocket.I’ve been saying for a while now that prices were going to get crazy this offseason and I have absolutely no connection to happenings in the nhl so I’m sure someone involved with the team was able to predict similarly

    We did not have the data in the summer of 2017 that Nurse was going to be a good Top 4 Dman.

    His results at the point were pointing the opposite way.

    Made huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge strides in 17/18

  74. dustrock says:

    Ceci gettting $4.3 million is hilarious to me. Poor Ottawa.

    VOR, fantastic story. Real great.

  75. OriginalPouzar says:

    36 percent body fat:
    slepy was a casualty of caggulia, why i dont know

    bog was a casualty of his agent.

    hopefully JP is not a casualty of the coach and so forth (their focus on culture and character over hockey skill is alarming and damaging this team)

    Slep was a casualty of never converting on the opportunities he did receive. It doesn’t matter that the coaching staff gave more leash and opportunity to Caggulia, Slepy had opportunities and simply didn’t do enough with them.

    Neither play has.

  76. Wonder Llama says:

    Stray Cat Blues is absolutely filthy rock n roll in the best possible way.

    Beggars Banquet is an astounding album; the one that made them feel authentically dangerous in a way that no number of Satanic Majesties Requests ever could.

    Also, I would pay good money for a collection of short stories by VOR.

  77. OriginalPouzar says:

    frjohnk: I think getting a pick for Davidson was good.
    Aberg for Letestu was good.
    Maroon for a 3rd round pick and a B prospect was not good.

    Maroon had 4 goals in 56 games ( while playing half that time in the top 6 with the Ducks) and we gave up a 4th rounder (93rd overall) and a B prospect ( Martin Gernat)So his value was low and we picked him up from the scrap heap.

    Maroon in Edmonton had 41 goals in 138 games. His value was higher leaving Edmonton than when he was leaving Anaheim.The Oilers basically received in return what they gave up for him.

    I never agreed that the Oilers should have gotten the Patrick Eaves return, ( which was a conditional 1st rounder) but a 3rd rounder? Not good.

    If you are talking about the trade of the 3rd rounder for Maroody?Then a good trade for the Oilers.

    I don’t believe Maroon’s value was not greater leaving EDM than ANA due to the fact that leaving EDM he was a pending UFA (and playing poorly).

    If the trade was Dudek plus Marody for Maroon, I think most would be quite happy and, essentially, that is exactly what the trade was.

    Marody is a signifigant asset for this organization.

  78. pts2pndr says:

    frjohnk: Curtis Hamilton is another guy drafted a few years earlier who had 82 points in 62 games and played world jrs for Canada draft +1.I thought there was a player there too.Wasnt even close.

    Neither player recieved much playing time in the AHL. The kids have to play to improve! For their lack of playing time first year inthe AHL Pitlick and Hamilton should have went back to junior!

  79. OriginalPouzar says:

    godot10: If Rieder isn’t with McDavid, he is the guy.

    I would prefer Rieder with Stome and Khaira if Strome isn’t playing RW.

  80. JimmyV1965 says:

    Wilde: This sounded a little extreme at first, but looking at the WC… I’d say this is the competition:

    McDavid
    MacKinnon*
    Scheifele
    Kopitar
    Getzlaf *
    Seguin
    Couture
    Staal *
    O’Reilly
    Karlsson
    Toews *
    Monahan **
    Carter *

    * Guys who are 30+

    ** The only guy the same age as Draisaitl.

    Common denominators here are better linemates than Drai had last year, and experience advantage.

    I’d say besides 97 MacKinnon’s probably out of reach. That’s it.

    Interesting. When I was thinking about western conference Cs the first three on your list were the guys I thought of immediately. No one will be better than McDavid, but can Drai be better than McKinnon and Scheiffle? Maybe. The rest of the list the guys are either aging or Drai is better than them right now.

    It’s so easy to be down on the team right now, but with McDavid and Drai, the sky is really the limit. A long way to go of course, but we have two essential pieces.

  81. OriginalPouzar says:

    Woodguy v2.0: We did not have the data in the summer of 2017 that Nurse was going to be a good Top 4 Dman.

    His results at the point were pointing the opposite way.

    Made huuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuge strides in 17/18

    In this case, the data was inferior to the eye test as my eye test of Nurse, from when we was drafted through the 2016/17 season, and his year over year improvement, left very little doubt in my mind he would be at least a solid to upper echelon 2nd pairing d-man. I never agreed with those that thought differently based on metrics.

  82. JimmyV1965 says:

    Also interesting to note. The Cs in the east IMO are much better than the Cs in the west. And the Cs in in the Pacific might be the worst in my the league.

  83. frjohnk says:

    OriginalPouzar: If the trade was Dudek plus Marody for Maroon, I think most would be quite happy and, essentially, that is exactly what the trade was.

    I dont agree with this as it then takes us down the road that we traded Barzal and not the 16th overall for Reinhart.

    I agree with you that Marody is a nice prospect

  84. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    Wilde,

    – You are killing it with these I really enjoy them. Thanks.

  85. Georgexs says:

    Georgexs:
    Here’s something.

    In 16-17, 30 NHL teams used a total of 888 skaters.

    In 17-18, 31 NHL teams used a total of 890 skaters.

    I didn’t expect that. I thought an extra team would mean extra roster spots and a corresponding increase in the number of players used at the NHL level. But this wasn’t the case. The total number of skaters stayed on level with what we’ve seen for the past few seasons:

    13-14, 886
    14-15, 882
    15-16, 898
    16-17, 888
    17-18, 890

    The same number of players spread over more teams, more games, more minutes. This might be part of the reason that scoring went up last season (along with a demographic shift to younger players and more effective power plays). There were only so many NHL-ready players and many of them were marginal. The weaker ones in the group saw more ice time. Creating more opportunity and mismatches for skilled players.

    There were an extra 41 games in 17-18 compared to 16-17. And teams used basically the same number of players from season to season. So who got the extra minutes from those extra 41 games?

    Time on ice per game shows us how coaches assess and use players. (I’m using TOI per game as a good enough proxy for skill and the degree to which players have established themselves in the NHL.) I sorted players by TOI per game and then split them into the top 50% and the bottom 50% for each season.

    I found that the top half got 36% of the extra minutes in 17-18. The bottom half got 64%.

    This suggests to me that coaches played their weaker options more in 17-18 than they had in 16-17. By my reasoning, having weaker options on the ice more often led to more scoring, both for skilled players and for less skilled, less experienced players. Both the top and bottom half saw a near equal increase in their overall scoring rates.

    Which leads me to adjust what I posted before. From a scoring perspective, it’s not just the more established and skilled players that benefit from having less established and less skilled players on the ice. All players benefit.

  86. LadiesloveSmid says:

    OriginalPouzar: In this case, the data was inferior to the eye test as my eye test of Nurse, from when we was drafted through the 2016/17 season, and his year over year improvement, left very little doubt in my mind he would be at least a solid to upper echelon 2nd pairing d-man.I never agreed with those that thought differently based on metrics.

    *slow clap*

    You’re incredible!

  87. Bruce McCurdy says:

    godot10: I doubt Nurse was interested in signing last summer.

    So do I. I’m just pushing back against the notion that somehow he should have been signed for 8 years on this past Jul 01. It’s a process. I still think a bridge is the more likely outcome.

  88. RonnieB says:

    Wilde: This sounded a little extreme at first, but looking at the WC… I’d say this is the competition:

    McDavid
    MacKinnon*
    Scheifele
    Kopitar
    Getzlaf *
    Seguin
    Couture
    Staal *
    O’Reilly
    Karlsson
    Toews *
    Monahan **
    Carter *

    * Guys who are 30+

    ** The only guy the same age as Draisaitl.

    Common denominators here are better linemates than Drai had last year, and experience advantage.

    I’d say besides 97 MacKinnon’s probably out of reach. That’s it.

    Probably just a typo, but MacKinnon is not 30. He will be 23 in September. (Draisaitl will be 23 in October).

  89. OriginalPouzar says:

    frjohnk: I dont agree with this as it then takes us down the road that we traded Barzal and not the 16th overall for Reinhart.

    I agree with you that Marody is a nice prospect

    Chiarelli was express when he made the Maroon trade that he had every intention of flipping the acquired pick for close to NHL ready player as soon as he could and he then followed up on that.

    To me Marody is very much linked to the Maroon trade.

  90. OriginalPouzar says:

    LadiesloveSmid: *slow clap*

    You’re incredible!

    Don’t know if you are being sarcastic or not – think you are.

  91. jm363561 says:

    I get that the Oilers have been bad for a very long time. But I can’t shake the feeling a new dynasty is fated to be. For that to be so one of the young men we are discussing here will not just exceed expectations. He will have to shatter them.

    ======

    Caggiula being a positive +/- player would shatter my expectations. 😀

    Seriously, great read. Puljujarvi might just be “the one” (if he can survive the Oiler development process.)

  92. Ozoil says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    I think jp will be a top 6 rw. Whether he’ll do it under tmac or another coach is the question. Put him with mcdavid and nuge in pre season and let them get the chemistry. That’s all there is to it.

  93. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    OriginalPouzar: In this case, the data was inferior to the eye test as my eye test of Nurse, from when we was drafted through the 2016/17 season, and his year over year improvement, left very little doubt in my mind he would be at least a solid to upper echelon 2nd pairing d-man.I never agreed with those that thought differently based on metrics.

    He was not good via eye test either.

    Ymmv

  94. Wilde says:

    RonnieB: Probably just a typo, but MacKinnon is not 30. He will be 23 in September. (Draisaitl will be 23 in October).

    Yeah he should be a double asterisk.

    JimmyV1965: Interesting. When I was thinking about western conference Cs the first three on your list were the guys I thought of immediately. No one will be better than McDavid, but can Drai be better than McKinnon and Scheiffle? Maybe. The rest of the list the guys are either aging or Drai is better than them right now.

    It’s so easy to be down on the team right now, but with McDavid and Drai, the sky is really the limit. A long way to go of course, but we have two essential pieces.

    I don’t think we can say for sure he’s better than Monahan, Seguin and Karlsson

  95. OilClog says:

    If TMac is serious about keeping his job coaching the team in Orange he’d do big heaping favour by sticking Drake in the press box. Icing him with either 97 or 29 is just helping the other team win, out of the playoffs and lead by a ginger Dec 1st.

    TMac better have his head out of his ass this preseason and not treat it like Eakins did again, hopefully someone’s ships the blender to Siberia.

  96. Professor Q says:

    Wilde: Yeah he should be a double asterisk.

    I don’t think we can say for sure he’s better than Monahan, Seguin and Karlsson

    I think we can indeed say for sure that he’s better than Monahan and Karlsson (he is), but yeah. Seguin and Scheifele are indeed better at this point.

    Draisaitl definitely has the potential to be more versatile than Seguin or Scheifele, though, due to body type and playing style, but won’t likely be as high a point producer as them.

  97. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Wilde: Yeah he should be a double asterisk.

    I don’t think we can say for sure he’s better than Monahan, Seguin and Karlsson

    Jury is out on Karlsson.

    I’d add Couture, and Scheifele to that list though

    Also, Monahan is really good and playing 1st comp so I’d need to be convinced of this as well.

  98. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Professor Q: I think we can indeed say for sure that he’s better than Monahan and Karlsson (he is), but yeah. Seguin is likely better at this point. Draisaitl definitely has the potential to be more versatile than Seguin, though, due to body type and playing style.

    What evidence do you have that he is better than Monahan?

    Honest question.

  99. Wilde says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Jury is out on Karlsson.

    I’d add Couture, Seguin and Scheifele to that list though

    Yeah they’re on the initial list, along with the rest of the Western Conference centres that are at least as good as him. Those are just the guys on the younger end of it and that I’d contend Jimmy’s comment that Drai’s already better than them

  100. Professor Q says:

    Woodguy v2.0: What evidence do you have that he is better than Monahan?

    Honest question.

    Draisaitl averages 10-20 more points a season than Monahan does, while playing on the 2nd line in Edmonton with less consistent and less skilled linemates (Yes, one year glued to McDavid, who is clearly better than Gaudreau, but this year and hopefully next season and beyond are a bit different, non?). Plus, and I know you’re likely going to relegate me to the “seen him good” crowd, Draisaitl is bigger and can use that to his advantage.

    Monahan might have a better contract, though. But I don’t see us calling him the Canadian Gretzky/Sundin etc. due to his playmaking abilities (and size and playing type for the latter).

  101. Glovjuice says:

    hunter1909:
    Hunter1909″s trade analysis: A big fat F for the MacLowesers, and here’s why:

    Nifty trade as in the Petry getting “challenged” by on the then learning yet preaching the NHL isn’t a development league for players(thoroughly despicable)MacT mold.

    Nifty as in: Oilers losing a popular and decent player who criticized the Lowe+MacT “swamp” for essentially…nothing much.

    Memo to Katz’s draft day son: It’s Uncle Kevin Lowe and Uncle MacT who are screwing your Dad’s hockey team right now. In fact, they’ve been running it into the ground ever since Lowe took over the GM job. Before you were born Edmonton wasn’t on so many no-trade lists, like today = the reason – no Lowe+MacT who everyone despises.

  102. frjohnk says:

    OriginalPouzar: Chiarelli was express when he made the Maroon trade that he had every intention of flipping the acquired pick for close to NHL ready player as soon as he could and he then followed up on that.

    To me Marody is very much linked to the Maroon trade.

    If thats the case, then

    https://www.tsn.ca/chiarelli-oilers-willing-to-deal-picks-for-players-1.298497

    I still dont like the idea that “we traded Barzal for Reinhart”, rather I would say that “we traded the 16th overall ( plus 33rd overall) for Reinhart.”

  103. Glovjuice says:

    hunter1909,

    But, the Flyers suck…year, after year, after year.

  104. Bruce McCurdy says:

    How about “Oilers traded Perron for Reinhart”

  105. frjohnk says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    How about “Oilers traded Perron for Reinhart”

    What about Klinkhammer?

  106. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    How about “Oilers traded Perron for Reinhart”

    Bruce….

  107. rickithebear says:

    Bruce McCurdy:
    How about “Oilers traded Perron for Reinhart”

    How about.
    MacT traded MP and 2014 2nd for Perron

    MacT/SMB selected Draisaitl over Bennett

    Mact traded Perron for #16 and Klinkhammer

    MacT won the Mcdavid Lottery as GM.

    MacT/SMB had Mcdavid #1 on thier board.

    PC followed M/S board by drafting Mcdavid.

    PC/Green thought it was a good idea to trade #16 and #33 for Reinhart.

    Would love to have seen MacT/SMB selections @ 16 & 33.

  108. Glovjuice says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Yes we did, consensus top ten pick in draft year AND stellar against peers at world junior.

  109. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Professor Q,

    Draisaitl averages 10-20 more points a season than Monahan does, while playing on the 2nd line in Edmonton with less consistent and less skilled linemates (Yes, one year glued to McDavid, who is clearly better than Gaudreau, but this year and hopefully next season and beyond are a bit different, non?).

    Fair point.

    Its really tough to compare the two as Drai’s results with 97 must be discounted, but he had way worse linemates away while playing easier comp.

    Monahan plays the toughs, but he had Gaudreau who is very good.

    FWIW:

    5v5 Pts/60 last year:

    Monahan 2.32
    Drai 2.29

    Drai away from McDavid 2.00

    Monahan didn’t play away enough from Gaudreau to give a good sample.

    Seeing as Monahan plays the McDavid role on CGY, Center vs other team’s best Dpair, I think you had to give the edge to him.

    At the very least its not a slam dunk, which I took your post to mean which is why I wanted to know why you thought that.

    Plus, and I know you’re likely going to relegate me to the “seen him good” crowd, Draisaitl is bigger and can use that to his advantage.

    Every player has his own set of advantages.

    They add up and contribute to his results.

    I don’t think one set of advantages mean more than another if they don’t mean better results.

    My “eyetest” thing today was strictly about Nurse in 16/17 who failed most eye tests except a few.

    Monahan might have a better contract, though. But I don’t see us calling him the Canadian Gretzky/Sundin etc. due to his playmaking abilities (and size and playing type for the latter).

    I wasn’t even thinking contract, but that’s a good point too.

    I watch *a lot* of non-EDM hockey and Drai is a very good player, but the NHL is full of the best players on the planet and he’s not in the upper end yet imo.

    Monahan is really good.

  110. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Glovjuice:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Yes we did, consensus top ten pick in draft year AND stellar against peers at world junior.

    I have no idea what this is in regards to.

    A little help?

  111. JimmyV1965 says:

    Wilde: Yeah he should be a double asterisk.

    I don’t think we can say for sure he’s better than Monahan, Seguin and Karlsson

    Seguin is better I think but aging. IMO Drai is better than Monahan already and Karlsson is a total wild card. I have no idea what he is. When I saw Vegas play it looked to me like Marchessault was driving the line.

  112. Glovjuice says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    RE no data for Nurse as top four D – it was almost inevitable at his draft position and success at world juniors.

  113. OriginalPouzar says:

    frjohnk: If thats the case, then

    https://www.tsn.ca/chiarelli-oilers-willing-to-deal-picks-for-players-1.298497

    I still dont like the idea that “we traded Barzal for Reinhart”, rather I would say that “we traded the 16th overall ( plus 33rd overall)for Reinhart.”

    False equivalency, sorry.

  114. Zow says:

    hunter1909:
    Does anyone agree that trading ROR for Skinner is a huge mistake for Buffalo? As in, the kind that keeps them and teams like them(cough Oilers cough) at the bottom of the NHL ?

    RoR wasn’t a big fan of Eichel, time to move on and give the team to the kid!

  115. Wilde says:

    JimmyV1965: Seguin is better I think but aging

    He’s 27

    JimmyV1965: Drai is better than Monahan

    I don’t think this is true, and to say it we’ll need a waaay larger sample of Drai minus McDavid plus a good linemate

    JimmyV1965: When I saw Vegas play it looked to me like Marchessault was driving the line

    Agreed, but in this example not only do we need more data on Drai, we need more on Karlsson too so it’s completely up in the air

  116. jtblack says:

    I know Drai’s 5×5 points went up this Past year. (thx to posters on here)

    I think hebhas another Level. With continued Good 5×5; better linemates and some actual PP production ; he COULD be an 85 Point Center. That would be closer to the Crosby / Malkin scenario then.

    Hoping Leon can do it.

  117. Oilman99 says:

    Bruce McCurdy: So do I. I’m just pushing back against the notion that somehow he should have been signed for 8 years on this past Jul 01. It’s a process. I still think a bridge is the more likely outcome.

    No cap room for anything but a bridge.

  118. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Wilde: He’s 27

    I don’t think this is true, and to say it we’ll need a waaay larger sample of Drai minus McDavid plus a good linemate

    Agreed, but in this example not only do we need more data on Drai, we need more on Karlsson too so it’s completely up in the air

    At 27 he’s close to the downward slope for offense with most forwards, and while for many top players it’s a trade off between offense and defense as they age I don’t think it is with Seguin.

  119. Oilman99 says:

    jtblack:
    I know Drai’s 5×5 points went up this Past year.(thx to posters on here)

    I think hebhas another Level. With continued Good 5×5; better linemates and some actual PP production ; he COULD be an 85 Point Center.That would be closer to the Crosby / Malkin scenario then.

    Hoping Leon can do it.

    If he doesn’t have another level, the contract is a huge overpay, the problem is the lack of bonafide top six wingers to allow I’m to perform to the max due to cap hell.

  120. treevojo says:

    Woodguy v2.0: He was not good via eye test either.

    Ymmv

    There were a few posters quite bullish with regards to Nurse reaching his potential.

    The ceiling of that potential was in the eye of the beholder.

  121. godot10 says:

    OilClog:
    If TMac is serious about keeping his job coaching the team in Orange he’d do big heaping favour by sticking Drake in the press box. Icing him with either 97 or 29 is just helping the other team win, out of the playoffs and lead by a ginger Dec 1st.

    TMac better have his head out of his ass this preseason and not treat it like Eakins did again, hopefully someone’s ships the blender to Siberia.

    I swear to Godot that I do not have a second alias.

  122. godot10 says:

    Woodguy v2.0: What evidence do you have that he is better than Monahan?

    Honest question.

    If I had the choice between the two, I think I would pick Draisaitl.

  123. Lowetide says:

    Evan Bouchard is having a terrible game in Kamloops. Don’t panic!

  124. Bank Shot says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Monahan scored 4 points in 8 games when Gaudreau was out with a hand injury a couple of years ago.

    According to corsica hockey its been Backlund not Monahan that takes the toughest matchups.

    I’ll take Draisaitl over Monahan. I think he’s clear by a fair margin.

  125. Glovjuice says:

    Lowetide:
    Evan Bouchard is having a terrible game in Kamloops. Don’t panic!

    Looks like he needs to work on “intensity”.

  126. JimmyV1965 says:

    Wilde: He’s 27

    I don’t think this is true, and to say it we’ll need a waaay larger sample of Drai minus McDavid plus a good linemate

    Agreed, but in this example not only do we need more data on Drai, we need more on Karlsson too so it’s completely up in the air

    All good points

  127. jtblack says:

    Lowetide,

    How bad? saw the 1st period but nothing after that.

  128. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    Evan Bouchard is having a terrible game in Kamloops. Don’t panic!

    I missed the 3rd but he was awful in the 2nd.

  129. BlacqueJacque says:

    It’s strange that I have fond memories of this trade when ultimately, it ended up as nothing but an exchange of contracts and a mild cap dump.

  130. Rondo says:

    Glovjuice,

    And skating

  131. Glovjuice says:

    Rondo:
    Glovjuice,

    And skating

    Oooohhh, boy

  132. Lowetide says:

    jtblack:
    Lowetide,

    How bad?saw the 1st period but nothing after that.

    He was poor in all aspects of the game. Even his passing was off. It happens.

  133. €√¥£€^$ says:

    Hearing rumours of Bieksa and Oilers discussing a PTO……thoughts anyone?

  134. hunter1909 says:

    €√¥£€^$:
    Hearing rumours of Bieksa and Oilers discussing a PTO……thoughts anyone?

    I always secretly liked Bieska’s big mouth.

  135. OriginalPouzar says:

    Canada plays the States this afternoon – hopefully Bouchard is in the lineup with a chance to have a stronger game.

    Not sure it he’ll play or not – Canada essentially has a roster for 2 teams.

  136. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    godot10: If I had the choice between the two, I think I would pick Draisaitl.

    I would too, but its not a slam dunk or “clear” imo

  137. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Glovjuice:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    RE no data for Nurse as top four D – it was almost inevitable at his draft position and success at world juniors.

    Understood.

    Draft position and WJR doesn’t give us slam dunks all the time.

    Bogosian 3rd
    Schenn 5th
    Murphy 12th
    Tuebert 13th
    Cowen 9th
    Gubranson 3rd
    Murray 2nd
    Reinhart 3rd

    High pick and WJR doesn’t guarantee NHL success

  138. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bank Shot:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Monahan scored 4 points in 8 games when Gaudreau was out with a hand injury a couple of years ago.

    According to corsica hockey its been Backlund not Monahan that takes thetoughest matchups.

    I’ll take Draisaitl over Monahan. I think he’s clear by a fair margin.

    8 games doesn’t mean much.

    You’re right on the toughest match ups.

    I should have been more clear in terms of facing the oppositions top pair. I have edited my original post to reflect that.

    I take Drai over Monahan too, but I think its really close.

  139. RedArmy says:

    Gaudreau also had 5 points and was -6 in 8 games without Monahan.

  140. Glovjuice says:

    Woodguy v2.0: Understood.

    Draft position and WJR doesn’t give us slam dunks all the time.

    Bogosian 3rd
    Schenn 5th
    Murphy 12th
    Tuebert 13th
    Cowen 9th
    Gubranson 3rd
    Murray 2nd
    Reinhart 3rd

    High pick and WJR doesn’t guarantee NHL success

    Fair enough, but 12-13 are too late in round and most of the others are from a different time and could not skate – I should have mentioned he can also move very well / top four D or at worst very high end 5 that should have been signed long term ASAP (if his camp was willing, of course-which is the angle that many couch GM’s like myself don’t account for as a possibility when framing thoughts).

  141. frjohnk says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I take Drai over Monahan too, but I think its really close.

    I would take Drai over Monahan as well.

    Even though Drai played with McDavid for quite a bit, Monahan had Gaudreau and that guy is a superstar. Also Monahan played almost half his 5 on 5 minutes with Gio and Hamilton. Drai did not have that kind of luxury on the Oiler backend.

    I have always believed Drai is in the group of Monahan, MacKinnon, Barkov, Scheifle. While close, Drai is ahead of Monahan , but I dont think the other 3.

  142. Bank Shot says:

    Woodguy v2.0: 8 games doesn’t mean much.

    You’re right on the toughest match ups.

    I should have been more clear in terms of facing the oppositions top pair.I have edited my original post to reflect that.

    I take Drai over Monahan too, but I think its really close.

    Yeah 8 games is a small sample but its the only time Gaudreau and Monahan aren’t attached together at the hip.

    Disregarding any time Draisaitl spent on the top line when comparing him to Monahan is not fair because Monahan only plays top line, and he always does so with a top ten winger.

  143. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Bank Shot,

    Disregarding any time Draisaitl spent on the top line when comparing him to Monahan is not fair because Monahan only plays top line, and he always does so with a top ten winger.

    I didn’t do that though.

    Here is what I wrote:

    Its really tough to compare the two as Drai’s results with 97 must be discounted, but he had way worse linemates away while playing easier comp.

    I noted that when not with 97 he didn’t have much to play with.

    That said, 97 >>>>> Gaudreau

    So I put up both Drai’s overall scoring rates and without 97:

    Monahan plays the toughs, but he had Gaudreau who is very good.

    FWIW:

    5v5 Pts/60 last year:

    Monahan 2.32
    Drai 2.29

    Drai away from McDavid 2.00

    Monahan didn’t play away enough from Gaudreau to give a good sample.

    I guess I should have put up with and without McDavid.

    I was making the case that its close, not that Drai is bad and I didn’t frame it that way.

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