Don’t Start me Talking

by Lowetide

NHL players are showing up at rinks and talking to people with microphones. Most of the verbal is routine but there’s a gem here and there. Steve Ewen is a fine writer for the Vancouver Province and he posts quality all winter long. A quote from a recent article via Milan Lucic: “I feel good. I felt great last year. Being in shape was not an issue for me last year. If you talk to Peter (Chiarelli, the Oilers’ general manager), he said in his year-end press conference that skating was not an issue for me last year and it wasn’t. It was just things didn’t go well.”

What I noticed? Lucic was always a fine passer and could take a pass well, but he was caught in between so many times a year ago. Was it vision? Did he train incorrectly/become top heavy ala the Ethan Moreau “Mandelbaum” era? I don’t know and that’s a fact. I can say that I’ve watched Lucic his whole NHL career, and he was not making those excellent passes we saw in the past. The only thing, aside from erosion, I can think of is ML changed his training routine a year ago. People are predicting he’ll score 40-50 points in a recovery year, but what I’m looking for is his passing acumen to return. It’s a big part of what separated him from other enforcers in the game.

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.

JESSE PULJUJARVI’S COMPARABLES, DRAFT +3

Lots of talk in the last few days online about Jesse Puljujarvi and his role on the Oilers this coming season. JP’s comps (above) all took giant leaps forward in their draft +3 seasons and there’s no reason to believe it’ll be any different for Puljujarvi. The organization can do things to aid the process, including a training camp stapling to one of the high-end skill centers (97 or 29) but I can’t tell you that is going to happen. Either way, he should get power-play time. One thing I have read here and there is that Puljujarvi isn’t pushing enough to be inside the top-six. If you look at his goals per 60, there’s no real argument available:

The big Finn ranks No. 4 in goals per 60 (5-on-5, this is all NaturalStatTrick) and No. 5 in primary points per 60. It’s true there’s a gap between Nuge and JP, but the kid was also the one who was handled differently among that group during this past season. Tobias Rieder, Pontus Aberg, maybe they eat his lunch, but my feeling is Peter Chiarelli has made it fairly difficult for the coach to find alternatives. Perhaps it is happening just this way.

About damned time. Men haven’t cornered the market on intelligence or good ideas, and this kind of hiring should eventually end the centuries of mansplaining women have endured (I do it, too, but have at least become aware of it. Some of us males are not yet aware). The NHL has employed women in the past on the hockey side, but not much progress past Laura Stamm saving slow boat Bob Nystrom’s career and aiding New York City in winning four straight Stanley’s. This is long overdue. Damnable Leafs keep doing smart things.

https://twitter.com/FriedgeHNIC/status/1032296716014219264

I don’t think the Oilers would be in on Karlson but never say never. If would certainly blow the ‘summer of keeping your powder dry’ right out of the water. If the Habs are dealing Patches, I can see Edmonton making a long distance call on him for sure.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy morning and a fluid guest list. We’ll get going at 10, TSN1260, with the CFL, NFL front and center. I’ll have Rob Vollman on to talk about the two new Oilers hires this week and we’ll chat about projecting final standings in August. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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LadiesloveSmid

Pulju’s Liiga highlights pre-draft look like he scored a ton off the left halfwall. McLellan should just lengthen his leash and see what Jesse’s one-Ts do to an abysmal PP. In a lost season I can’t believe he didn’t load him up with ice time.

Woodguy v2.0

treevojo: I took it as just a joke but can see why you would like some clarification.

It turns out that LT had mentioned on the radio that I was on a round table next week, but didn’t tell me.

🙂

Hence the confusion.

OriginalPouzar

No surprise but Toby Enstrom is signing with Modo.

I saw a nice fit but it never seemed like it was a realistic option.

Wilde

ArmchairGM,

Yeah the 16 year old thing I was like, I wonder what other guys his age put up?

Then found out oh, no one else even got time in that league.

The Finns should be mad at the Oilers, honestly. This guy is one of their chosen sons, the farmboy savant. He deserves better.

russ99

If McLellan holds off on the constant line juggling and lets players find chemistry with each other, that could help a whole bunch of our players perform better.

The issue for Lucic with me wasn’t skating or passing (though I agree with LT, it’s a strength when he’s going good) it was the poor efforts on the wall and in front of the net, which seemed to me based out of exasperation rather than lack of fitness.

Just because the league is faster, doesn’t mean all steam ahead on the rush and stop doing things that some players to be more successful.

ArmchairGM

Wilde: I did a post about this at some point, but Puljujarvi was an absolute monster from about age 13 numerically in Finland, Just unreal numbers playing against kids years older than him

Yup. As a 16-year-old, he scored 12 goals in 11 games in junior. His time in the teir 2 senior league is pretty good, but I’ve heard lots of talk here about how he ‘hasn’t had much offence is Finnish Elite and AHL , so we can’t expect much from him in NHL either’. He played 21 games in the Elite mens league AS A 16-YEAR-OLD, for crying out loud. Should we really have expected huge point production from him??

Love the kid but I’m still surprised at how well his numbers stack up against the comps listed above. This guy has the potential to be a very good player for a very long time yet.

OriginalPouzar

There is a reason Puljujarvi was so highly touted and I am not concerned that he hasn’t “arrived” before his 20th birthday, in particular given the history of high talent players drafted from Europe (his comparables) and the fact that there are some good arrows (his metrics show better than the traditional box-cars).

Jesse is going to have a fine year – its going to be great!

Wilde

ArmchairGM: has been since junior”

I did a post about this at some point, but Puljujarvi was an absolute monster from about age 13 numerically in Finland, Just unreal numbers playing against kids years older than him

ArmchairGM

jp: That’s really remarkable. Thank you.

Thanks, appreciate the comments. I myself was surprised at the numbers – I went into this little exercise thinking that “Puljujarvi is shy on offence, has been since junior”, I just wanted to see what reasonable expectations were for this player. Could we expect 50% of Pastrnak’s offence? 60%? Turns out we may get a lot more than that. “Remarkable” is a good choice of words.

99266in87

OriginalPouzar:
While I don’t doubt that wingers had culpability in the lack of ability to transition but that does not absolve the d-man if their own culpability – it was very common for a 10 foot pass (with limited pressure) to be in the skates or otherwise in a tough place to receive.It truly amazed me how often a group of NHL d-men would fail to make simple tape to tape passes.

Not to absolve the forwards (wingers) for having to fumble breakout passes, but to make a tape to tape pass, a good and proper target (stick) has to be presented too, or else it’s just a throw away.

Wilde

Also, the better handlers/more skilled the wingers are, the less ‘on target’ the passes have to be.

Considering forechecking pressure is a constant threat, I’d say it’s fair to expect in most situations the Dman doesn’t have to make a perfect pass, just a timely one/

Wilde

OriginalPouzar,

Since this is basically a disagreement of the eyes I’ll reframe it as this:

How far from league average in ability is the group of defensemen,

and

How far from league average in ability is the group of natural wingers?

I’d say the wingers are demonstrably further, so if we’re faced with a problem where the two can’t collaborate successfully, I’m more comfortable betting that improving the winger group is the easier way to generate more improvement on the breakouts.

Basically what I’m saying is that the rate at which the wingers fumbled a clean play to them is higher than the rate at which the defensemen failed to make a clean play to the wingers.

OriginalPouzar

While I don’t doubt that wingers had culpability in the lack of ability to transition but that does not absolve the d-man if their own culpability – it was very common for a 10 foot pass (with limited pressure) to be in the skates or otherwise in a tough place to receive. It truly amazed me how often a group of NHL d-men would fail to make simple tape to tape passes.

Wilde

Also, I’m also going to pile beside the cannon some words about how the wingers hurt the breakout system more than the lack of ‘puck movers’ on the blue line or ‘playing slow’, or ‘team defense/commitment’, for when those things are inevitably blamed for the failings of a winger group to have even bottom third of the league level puck skill as a collective.

No other team I watch play fumbles what should be clean plays off of the wall more than the 2017-18 Oilers. Just simple taking and making a pass. It’s so devastating not being able to do that.

Wilde

Georgexs: None of the comp prospects you listed were asked to earn ice time or prove themselves while playing away from their team’s best offensive options. In a historic, disastrous 16-17 season for COL where nothing was working, Rantanen played all his time with MacKinnon and Duchene and was given 2:44 TOI per game on a league worst power play that managed to score 4.34 GF60. Talk about not earning it.
Bruce has a comment up here about JP’s offense being shy in the pre-breakout season. I invite anyone who feels that way to compare the opportunities that JP has been given to those given to his peers. It’s a bad bet to stick your best young players with players who don’t have offense. You can see that the other teams didn’t do that with their top prospects. Apparently, our organization seems to prefer to do things to derail rather than aid the process and then feed the media and fans lines that raise questions about the player.

We need to clone this post and huddle a stack of them next to a cannon for next season if JP starts and stays on the Strome line.

I’ve done posts similar to this before but it’s better put here

Leon McMesstzky

Georgexs,

I was waiting for a response. Glad i did. But i spit out my coffee.

Ryan

Off topic, I find the Oilers top four d situation to be fascinating.

I liken the Oilers having three top four d to a three legged table. If one of those three dmen gets injured, the entire season tips over. Even if one or more of those three legs don’t break, the table has plenty of wobble.

Not exactly a set of circumstances I would like to find myself facing if I were Chiarelli.

Now I’m nearly certain he would have been fired already had there not been mitigating circumstances to some of his failed trades, but who’s going to ever hire him if the Oilers fire him?

As much as I am a fan of the Oilers, I am also aware that they’re a tremendous black hole where NHL coaching, playing, and managing careers go to die.

Back to the blue line… if the most injury prone Oiler top four d gets injured, and Sekera’s also out, who are they going to run on their power play units? Russell and Benning…?

Cmon guys.

pts2pndr

Georgexs: I hope I’m right too. But, just by the history with the current HC, I’m guessing the odds he gets an extended look in a favorable spot are long. People’s pasts generally predict their futures. And JP’s past with this HC hasn’t been one filled with better looks. And, despite what the players may have said in the post-mortem, the blender’s not going anywhere. The HC is nervous and he’s in a tight spot. Failing with CMD isn’t a good resume highlight.

I truly hope your wrong but I wouldn’t bet against your thinking!

Ryan

Jordan,

Woodguy doesn’t do forum post sarcasm.

This I know.

In fairness, it’s almost impossible to read sarcasm into a forum post especially if it reads as having a galling tone.

Georgexs

jp: That makes sense for sure, and absolutely agree with the general point.

Also, zero question that whether you’re talking McDavid individual GF/60 or team GF/60 with McDavid on, KY was a big drag.

I’ve been intrigued by the McDavid-KY underlying numbers though, as Armchair alluded to. I know you weren’t targeting KY with your statement at all, but still feel like it’s unfair to say he was a drag on CMD’s offense. Clearly the final results weren’t there, but everything else was basically remarkable.

Of the 26 Oilers CMD played at least 30 minutes with last year, with KY he had his best CF/60 and CF%, second best FF/60 and best FF%, best SF/60 and SF%, second best SCF/60 and best SC%, best HDCF/60 and HDCF%. This with his 4th hardest zone starts. The flip side was by far CMD’s worst on ice Shooting% and his second worst PDO with KY (.966; he was only under 1000 with 2 other players).

Maybe something real and bad was happening with KY, but it sure looks to me like it was just shit luck. Seems as though I’ve become a KY fanboy somehow. But I kinda think he’s gonna eat Rattie’s lunch in preseason and grab that 1R job for the foreseeable future.

I’m also a KY fan. That was not a shot at him at all.

I don’t pay attention to his stats last year because he shouldn’t have been on the team.

Georgexs

Lowetide: https://www.naturalstattrick.com/playerreport.php?season=20172018&stype=2&sit=5v5&stdoi=std&rate=y&v=t&playerid=8479344

It’s in the individual player pages, you have to hit Jesse Puljujarvi, teammates, individual, rates and it gets the numbers for you. Fabulous site.

Ha! I never thought to click rates with teammates.

Sweet. Thank you.

Scungilli Slushy

When you watch CHL scoring highlights, for many players you see them banging in pucks, completely uncovered, on9 goalies terribly out of position.

This was clear on Yama’s highlights.

I thought last season he played well overall, but he couldn’t finish. Muffin shots. Not many top 6 players can survive like that.

So he got sent down to work. Many Oiler players struggled with finishing. With the sticks now anybody can have velocity. But like Laine you have to learn to get into position and use the whip to get enough KM/HR to beat an NHL goalie. And be accurate. I think every NHL player should be accurate, not all unfailing like Gretzky, but come on they are pro players, only five on the ice. It’s not football with 3 score roster players.

Yama and JP didn’t do that well. If they learn to the rest is there already. And of course work on roofing it and hitting corners. Goalies are big and D tight, you have to hit Ricki’s ‘open’ holes with mustard to be a good scorer.

Bling

frjohnk:
I know that Lucic has had two very poor years at 5 on 5 but I believe as long as Lucic stays healthy, he will rebound somewhat in this part of his game.

Why?

2 big reasons.

– He will play majority of the season in the top 6.
I dont see anybody pushing him out of the top 6 left wing spots.So he will get to play with McDavid and Drai.Two world class centers.And if injury hits one of those guys, then Lucic will play with RNH or Strome.2 decent centers.So he will be able to play with skill.

Last year, Lucic only scored well with RNH.In 314 minutes with RNH, Lucic scored 2.1 pts/60.The rest of the centers, Lucic scored quite poor.But the reason why Lucic scored poorly way from RNH is a poor shooting percentage.Which is the the 2nd reason why I think Lucic rebounds.

-Shooting percentage.
He shot 5.93% last year. ( 5 on 5)

Up until last year, his shooting % was 13.5% for his career. ( 5 on 5)
Last year he got 69 shot attempts off from the slot area.This is the most he has every had. So he was getting into the slot area and getting chances.They just were not going in.It happens to players.Sometimes for big stretches.

Id be more concerned if he was not getting into the slot area and not getting shot attempts away but that was not happening.

Heck maybe Lucic shoots 15%.That would tie his 5th highest shooting %.He is going to play with skill and he is getting to the right area.Why not?

69 shots from the slot area is great, except it’s not as though he’s the type to penetrate that area on his own. He played a ton with our best centres and one of them is a generational talent. I think they had way more to do with that number than Lucic.

We’ve seen two seasons of EV decline from Lucic at an age where scoring line forwards start to decline. During this time, he suppressed the EV scoring of perhaps the best EV player in the NHL. His respectable pre-Christmas numbers last season were padded with 2nd assists. Despite what Chia apparently did not mention to him in his exit interview, yes, his speed is a huge damn problem!

I really don’t buy for a second that Lucic can’t be pushed out of the top 6. RNH is the #1 LW, and Rieder could easily become the #2 LW. Scottie Upshall, who was signed to PTO, had better EV scoring rates than Lucic last season. So did almost every winger on the roster last season.

If Lucic emerges from camp as the #2 LW, that’s more of a political statement than it is based on anything that has actually transpired in reality.

jp

ArmchairGM: Wow Georgexs, this is pure gold. Made me think about these players’ production-per-60 given they got much more opportunity than Puljujarvi. I’ll look strickly at 5v5 here, as Puljujarvi hasn’t had the PP time comparable to the others. Numbers below are Points/60, separated by center. I’m looking at time spent with the teams top centers only. Interestingly, both Rantanen and Pastrnak played with Soderberg in their draft+1.

DRAFT +1
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 0.00 (0:43)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.00 (29:09)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 1.31 (45:49)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 2.55 (141:15)
Nylander: NO NHL TOI
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: 2.86 (84:01)
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: 1.67 (107:28)

Rantanen and Nylander did nothing, Puljujarvi’s numbers were better than Pastrnak’s.

DRAFT +2
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 1.66 (684:55)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.86 (350:34)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 1.96 (61:19)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 2.04 (499:06)
Nylander w/ Kadri: 0.00 (4:57)
Nylander w/ Bozak: 0.00 (1.45)
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: 1.87 (256:57)
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: 2.37 (101:22)

Rantanen does pretty good here, Pastrnak is blossoming and Nylander is still at zero. Puljujarvi’s numbers are close to Pastrnak’s, except TOI. Opportunity is everything here.

DRAFT +3
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 2.28 (946:52)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.00 (12:48)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 2.22 (541:19)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 1.54 (429:40)
Nylander w/ Kadri: 2.17 (360:06)
Nylander w/ Matthews: 1.82 (624:42)
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: we wait
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: we wait

All three comps have arrived, all are scoring at 1st line rates, yet their production isn’t any better than what Jesse has already posted. JP clearly belongs in this company, the only question in my mind is whether he gets 900+ minutes with skill centers this year. If he does, I think we can be confident that he won’t disappoint. If he scores 2.12 in 950 minutes (his avg between McDavid and Draisaitl last year) he’ll be right in line with this group. And I don’t think it’s out of the question that he bests these draft+3 numbers either.

That’s really remarkable. Thank you.

Bling

ArmchairGM,

Great post.

I am extremely high on JP and those numbers reaffirm it.

jp

Jordan: With some snark and sass, I was trying to say that you are following in the footsteps of some of the bigger personalities on the Oilogosphere, but that you are not yet recognized in the same light.

Also, LT made a big deal about not addressing you about participating, as you haven’t been on the radio recently… so it seemed entirely necessary to at least poke you about it.

Essentially, I was being a dink.

And clearly failing to do so in a clear and coherent manner, so that while some of the intent might have gotten through, but none of the wit or humor that I desired.

So… since I failed to create a humorous situation about you being on round table, let me instead say in honesty that I am in fact looking forwards to it, as I quite like you and Bruce and Alan.

What a dink.

jp

Georgexs: Bad phrasing.

What I meant to say was “The only forward who seemed to hurt CMD’s offense was KY.”

I looked at CMD’s GF60 with different forwards. It was routinely high except for KY. Everyone seemed to adjust to CMD, because it seemed basically a function of being on the ice with him while he performed magic. And because goals were going in at a CMD rate while they were out there, I assumed that being with him was boosting their offense. That’s how my brain formed the argument.

I think players routinely heap praise on CMD, along the lines of “he glides as fast as the rest of us skate.” Players who play with him probably feel a little sheepish and self-conscious because he generates multiple opportunities for every one that they’re able to cash.

That makes sense for sure, and absolutely agree with the general point.

Also, zero question that whether you’re talking McDavid individual GF/60 or team GF/60 with McDavid on, KY was a big drag.

I’ve been intrigued by the McDavid-KY underlying numbers though, as Armchair alluded to. I know you weren’t targeting KY with your statement at all, but still feel like it’s unfair to say he was a drag on CMD’s offense. Clearly the final results weren’t there, but everything else was basically remarkable.

Of the 26 Oilers CMD played at least 30 minutes with last year, with KY he had his best CF/60 and CF%, second best FF/60 and best FF%, best SF/60 and SF%, second best SCF/60 and best SC%, best HDCF/60 and HDCF%. This with his 4th hardest zone starts. The flip side was by far CMD’s worst on ice Shooting% and his second worst PDO with KY (.966; he was only under 1000 with 2 other players).

Maybe something real and bad was happening with KY, but it sure looks to me like it was just shit luck. Seems as though I’ve become a KY fanboy somehow. But I kinda think he’s gonna eat Rattie’s lunch in preseason and grab that 1R job for the foreseeable future.

Georgexs

ArmchairGM,

Terrific information. Well conceived, well laid out, and useful. Thank you.

How do you get individual 5v5 scoring rates with linemates? I can’t find it on NST.

Georgexs

There have been 8 forwards drafted since 2000 who have played at least 40 games in the NHL and averaged >= 1.0 PPG (points per game). I call this group A1.

6 of the 8 A1’s were drafted 1OV. Malkin was drafted 2OV after Ovechkin, another A1 forward. Barzal was taken 16th.

On average, an A1 forward is drafted once every two years.

This means, just by randomness, a team should get an A1 forward once every 60 years.

(I know it’s not entirely random: bad teams have a better shot at picking high, bad teams, as we know, can stay bad for a few years, and the lottery throws a curve in there as well. My apologies for not calculating the exact expectation.)

Which shows just how disgustingly filthy it is for PIT to end up with 2 A1 players in 2 consecutive drafts, #1 and #3 in PPG, the two best until CMD came along.

WSH also had the unusual luck to (almost) have two A1 forwards. Backstrom is not that far off at 0.98 PPG. WSH also happens to be in the same division as the one team that had two better A1 forwards.

I’m reminded of… You take the good, you take the bad. You take them both and there you have…

jp

OriginalPouzar: Drake Caggulia was able to have a profound effect on McDavid’s scoring rates.

Not true actually. I’m not certain if George is talking McDavid’s personal scoring or team scoring while on ice – either way Caggiula was a drag on GF%, but not actual GF/60 (was looking into it regarding KY)

McDavid’s individual scoring with Caggiula: 1.23 GF/60 (13th among the 26 Oilers to play 30 minutes with McDavid) and 4.10 P/60 (5th of 26).

And the team with McDavid on ice: 4.10 GF/60 with Caggiula (9th of 26) but also 4.92 GA/60 (26th of 26) => 45.5 GF% (24th of 26).

Drake Caggiula was able to have a profound effect on opposition scoring rates.

Walter Gretzkys Neighbour

Woodguy v2.0: Agreed with Glovjuice that this is a great post and I thank him for bringing it to my attention.

How to be successful in sport:
1) Use all the information from all good sources to build a good team
2) Hire a good coach to use your players to the best of their ability
3) Hope like he’ll everything falls right and bullshit doesn’t pile up

I consider this great praise indeed coming from you and Glovjuice! Thanks.

A major worry is that criteria 2 above is questionable at best!

ArmchairGM

Georgexs: Bad phrasing.

What I meant to say was “The only forward who seemed to hurt CMD’s offense was KY.”

I looked at CMD’s GF60 with different forwards. It was routinely high except for KY. Everyone seemed to adjust to CMD, because it seemed basically a function of being on the ice with him while he performed magic. And because goals were going in at a CMD rate while they were out there, I assumed that being with him was boosting their offense. That’s how my brain formed the argument.

I think players routinely heap praise on CMD, along the lines of “he glides as fast as the rest of us skate.” Players who play with him probably feel a little sheepish and self-conscious because he generates multiple opportunities for every one that they’re able to cash.

KY had a terrible on-ice SH% and that isn’t all on him – all 5 guys have to own that.

ArmchairGM

Georgexs:
“JP’s comps (above) all took giant leaps forward in their draft +3 seasons and there’s no reason to believe it’ll be any different for Puljujarvi. The organization can do things to aid the process, including a training camp stapling to one of the high-end skill centers (97 or 29) but I can’t tell you that is going to happen. Either way, he should get power-play time.”

****

You can kind of see what preceded the giant leap forward and what was in place for those players in their leap years.

None of the comp prospects you listed were asked to earn ice time or prove themselves while playing away from their team’s best offensive options. In a historic, disastrous 16-17 season for COL where nothing was working, Rantanen played all his time with MacKinnon and Duchene and was given 2:44 TOI per game on a league worst power play that managed to score 4.34 GF60. Talk about not earning it.

Bruce has a comment up here about JP’s offense being shy in the pre-breakout season. I invite anyone who feels that way to compare the opportunities that JP has been given to those given to his peers. It’s a bad bet to stick your best young players with players who don’t have offense. You can see that the other teams didn’t do that with their top prospects. Apparently, our organization seems to prefer to do things to derail rather than aid the process and then feed the media and fans lines that raise questions about the player.

Wow Georgexs, this is pure gold. Made me think about these players’ production-per-60 given they got much more opportunity than Puljujarvi. I’ll look strickly at 5v5 here, as Puljujarvi hasn’t had the PP time comparable to the others. Numbers below are Points/60, separated by center. I’m looking at time spent with the teams top centers only. Interestingly, both Rantanen and Pastrnak played with Soderberg in their draft+1.

DRAFT +1
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 0.00 (0:43)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.00 (29:09)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 1.31 (45:49)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 2.55 (141:15)
Nylander: NO NHL TOI
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: 2.86 (84:01)
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: 1.67 (107:28)

Rantanen and Nylander did nothing, Puljujarvi’s numbers were better than Pastrnak’s.

DRAFT +2
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 1.66 (684:55)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.86 (350:34)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 1.96 (61:19)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 2.04 (499:06)
Nylander w/ Kadri: 0.00 (4:57)
Nylander w/ Bozak: 0.00 (1.45)
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: 1.87 (256:57)
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: 2.37 (101:22)

Rantanen does pretty good here, Pastrnak is blossoming and Nylander is still at zero. Puljujarvi’s numbers are close to Pastrnak’s, except TOI. Opportunity is everything here.

DRAFT +3
Rantanen w/ MacKinnon: 2.28 (946:52)
Rantanen w/ Duchene: 0.00 (12:48)
Pastrnak w/ Bergeron: 2.22 (541:19)
Pastrnak w/ Krejci: 1.54 (429:40)
Nylander w/ Kadri: 2.17 (360:06)
Nylander w/ Matthews: 1.82 (624:42)
Puljujarvi w/ McDavid: we wait
Puljujarvi w/ Draisaitl: we wait

All three comps have arrived, all are scoring at 1st line rates, yet their production isn’t any better than what Jesse has already posted. JP clearly belongs in this company, the only question in my mind is whether he gets 900+ minutes with skill centers this year. If he does, I think we can be confident that he won’t disappoint. If he scores 2.12 in 950 minutes (his avg between McDavid and Draisaitl last year) he’ll be right in line with this group. And I don’t think it’s out of the question that he bests these draft+3 numbers either.

OriginalPouzar

Georgexs: Bad phrasing.

What I meant to say was “The only forward who seemed to hurt CMD’s offense was KY.”

I looked at CMD’s GF60 with different forwards. It was routinely high except for KY. Everyone seemed to adjust to CMD, because it seemed basically a function of being on the ice with him while he performed magic. And because goals were going in at a CMD rate while they were out there, I assumed that being with him was boosting their offense. That’s how my brain formed the argument.

Drake Caggulia was able to have a profound effect on McDavid’s scoring rates.

jp

jeetz: To add to this, even with a breakout year, JP will still likely get a bridge deal in the same area as Nurse would. 3-3.5 x 2 years. Hardly a back breaker.

JP McD RNH for 20+ games. sit back and enjoy

Do you think Nurse’s bridge is going to be 3-3.5M? I suspect it would be signed by now if that were the final number.

Georgexs

jp: I agree with you. But KY had less offense? With McDavid? Than without? I’m confused.

Bad phrasing.

What I meant to say was “The only forward who seemed to hurt CMD’s offense was KY.”

I looked at CMD’s GF60 with different forwards. It was routinely high except for KY. Everyone seemed to adjust to CMD, because it seemed basically a function of being on the ice with him while he performed magic. And because goals were going in at a CMD rate while they were out there, I assumed that being with him was boosting their offense. That’s how my brain formed the argument.

I think players routinely heap praise on CMD, along the lines of “he glides as fast as the rest of us skate.” Players who play with him probably feel a little sheepish and self-conscious because he generates multiple opportunities for every one that they’re able to cash.

Jordan

Fuge Udvar:
Jordan,

That’s assuming Puljujarvi’s camp is willing to negotiate an extension. He might want to see how this season turns out before signing long term. He wouldn’t be the first young player to bet on himself. I’m sure him and his agent ar97e looking at the RW depth chart and seeing an opportunity to play with a high end centre.

Maybe you see it as betting on himself. If I were in his shoes, I’d see what’s being built here and say “If I can make myself enough to get paid so I’m looked after, I have a chance to play on two amazing centres wing for the heart of my career, and be a part of a dynasty.”

McDavid floats all boats. The Oilers won’t move him. Lock in get a NTC if you can, and giddyup.

Trying for more money seems like a poor substitute to being part of what could be a legendary team.

Jordan

Woodguy v2.0:
Jordan,
1 – I was almost excited about the round table for next Wednesday, LT. If you can upgrade that last prospect for someone like Pat, Jon or Tyler, that’d be a really good panel. (don’t worry Darcy – you just need to hone your game in the minors before you come up to the big leagues).

I don’t know what this means

With some snark and sass, I was trying to say that you are following in the footsteps of some of the bigger personalities on the Oilogosphere, but that you are not yet recognized in the same light.

Also, LT made a big deal about not addressing you about participating, as you haven’t been on the radio recently… so it seemed entirely necessary to at least poke you about it.

Essentially, I was being a dink.

And clearly failing to do so in a clear and coherent manner, so that while some of the intent might have gotten through, but none of the wit or humor that I desired.

So… since I failed to create a humorous situation about you being on round table, let me instead say in honesty that I am in fact looking forwards to it, as I quite like you and Bruce and Alan.

jp

Georgexs: I’m sure players say lots of things (like “it is what it is”) and I’m sure there’s some adjustment involved with every new linemate. Can you think of anyone, other than Hall, who scored less with CMD than without CMD? Slepy? Caggiula? Yak? Pouliot? Khaira? The only forward who seemed to have noticeably lower offense with CMD last season was KY. I think the adjustment period is very short, because while the other guy is adjusting, CMD is busy finding routes for the puck to get into the net.

I agree with you. But KY had less offense? With McDavid? Than without? I’m confused.

JimmyV1965

Bank Shot: 17-17-2 is not right there. That’s miles from a playoff pace.

This is not even close to true of course.

JimmyV1965

Bank Shot: Maybe he was SAD about being on a loser franchise that was completely eliminated from the playoffs before Xmas.

Going back until when he was 15, Luicic has always played on playoff teams. The one year in his career before last season that he missed the playoffs it was 14/15 in Boston on a 96 point team. They were very much in it until the last day of the season.

Maybe going home to rest for the Xmas break last year and realizing that he had absolutely nothing to play for the rest of the season got in his head. Seems relatively possible to me.

I guess we will find out soon enough.

The Oilers were 6 pts out of the third place at Christmas. The team’s best stretch of the season happened just before the break and people were optimist again. Lucic’s awful play after Christmas had nothing to do with the playoffs, but it was a huge contributor to the team’s precipitous decline after the holidays.

treevojo

Woodguy v2.0:
Jordan,

1 – I was almost excited about the round table for next Wednesday, LT. If you can upgrade that last prospect for someone like Pat, Jon or Tyler, that’d be a really good panel. (don’t worry Darcy – you just need to hone your game in the minors before you come up to the big leagues).

I don’t know what this means

I took it as just a joke but can see why you would like some clarification.

OriginalPouzar

If i remember correctly, McLellan spoke specifically about not using Puljujarvi on the PP around mid-season citing two reasons (1) he felt that JP was getting a bit tired and wanted to scale back his minutes a bit and (2) he felt that JP needed more work in practice on some PP related matters such as positioning thereon.

JP started to get more PP time down the stretch, granted it was PP2 time. He didn’t do too much with that PP time and was way down the list of P/60 and P1/60 – even behind guys like Drake (who I acknowledge had more PP1 time – his PP time was split between PP1 and PP2.

Anyways, I’m going to assume that Manny Viverios will have free reign to deploy the players on the PP as he sees fit. I also assume Jesse is in the mix for PP1 time from Manny.

Georgexs

Bruce McCurdy: I’m excited about the round table next Wednesday, knowing that the QualTeam will force me to raise my own game.

What’s the round table next Wednesday? Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me?

Woodguy v2.0

Walter Gretzkys Neighbour: I agree – alarming is a perfect way to describe it! And puzzling. Is there a mental component, we just don’t know.

Watch enough sports and you see (as I know you do indeed watch enough sports!) sometimes things just break right, fall in to place, mesh – whatever and a player has a career year. Not suggesting that will happen for Lucic, but there are others on this team for whom that is a real possibility.

A couple years ago a so so pitching Jays team had a few players catch fire and there they were – in the hunt. Isn’t that really the thing about sports anyway?

You can (and should) use all the analytics and empirical measures you can to understand trends, probabilities etc, but in the end it comes down to – who knows random quantal fluctuations in the games!

Having said all this – I just want EVERY SINGLE quantum fluctuation to go against the despicable Flames! And the Canucks. And maybe Montreal too….

Agreed with Glovjuice that this is a great post and I thank him for bringing it to my attention.

How to be successful in sport:
1) Use all the information from all good sources to build a good team
2) Hire a good coach to use your players to the best of their ability
3) Hope like he’ll everything falls right and bullshit doesn’t pile up

Woodguy v2.0

Bank Shot:
Woodguy v2.0,

No I’m not on twitter.

K

jeetz

RonnieB:
I’m amazed by the comments implying that the Oilers would prefer to see another season go down the sewer than risk JP having a breakout season as a top 6 RW which might earn him a bigger second contract. Nearly as amazing are the suggestions that the Oilers should sign JP to a long term mega million $ contract now, just in case he has a breakout season this year and merits a larger contract later.

To add to this, even with a breakout year, JP will still likely get a bridge deal in the same area as Nurse would. 3-3.5 x 2 years. Hardly a back breaker.

JP McD RNH for 20+ games. sit back and enjoy

leadfarmer

Bank Shot: Maybe he was SAD about being on a loser franchise that was completely eliminated from the playoffs before Xmas.

Going back until when he was 15, Luicic has always played on playoff teams. The one year in his career before last season that he missed the playoffs it was 14/15 in Boston on a 96 point team. They were very much in it until the last day of the season.

Maybe going home to rest for the Xmas break last year and realizing that he had absolutely nothing to play for the rest of the season got in his head. Seems relatively possible to me.

I guess we will find out soon enough.

I think people underestimate the not having squat to play for effect on veteran players. Sure people will say they are professional and should give 100% every day but I’m sure someone could come to your job and say the same thing.

Scungilli Slushy

The Oilers have a better roster than the Kniggets IMO. It’s on the coaches to get 100% buy in, demand accountability, but allow flexibility and allow mistakes especially with a young roster to keep morale up.

McLellan mentioned over coaching. The Oilers have the deepest roster with NHL quality players outside of one or two, and system deeper than they’ve had in years and years. Playing well it’s a good team IMO, even if not a strong contender.

Deploy the roster that starts the season to maximize player’s strengths. Coach in a way to have quality play AND player engagement. Between 4 guys that each could be head coaches surely they can figure it out, please!