Time Waits For No One

The Edmonton Oilers are just three weeks away from training camp, so it’s a good time to place our bets and try to reach top dead reasonable. The defense is still fluid, so I’m slow-playing blue, but the forwards are coming into view and I think we can make some educated guesses about the Oilers 18-19.

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RE 18-19: ESTIMATED TIME ON ICE (FORWARDS)

  • Connor McDavid’s ice time remains the same, I increased his 5-on-4 time and reduced the penalty killing TOI. My theory is he can have more impact pushing the results and with the puck on his stick. We’ve talked about this since early summer (although “some sweet day” won’t be this season) so it should come as no surprise I’m nicking 97 in this discipline.
  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins gets a healthy increase in playing time, reflected in his moving up to the No. 1 line. I kept him on the 4-on-5, so the 5-on-4 time comes in fourth among forwards.
  • Kailer Yamamoto gets the push once he is recalled, playing both on the McDavid line (winning the job from Ty Rattie) and on the power play. I have him finishing with 29 points in 44 games (will publish everything before the season starts).
  • Milan Lucic appears to be here for the winter and the recipient of a massive push, as reflected in my numbers. It could be a pump and dump, but if things go well perhaps player and team will re-commit. If things falter, options are limited and painful.
  • Tobias Rieder will play more than he did a year ago with two teams, Oilers fans will notice him mostly on the penalty kill and in games where he’s playing a feature role on one of the skill lines (I have him playing a lot with the skill people).
  • Jesse Puljujarvi plays a complete season in my model, getting over 60 percent of his 5-on-5 time with skill (mostly Leon). I have him scoring 38 points (again, publishing probably mid-September). One tidbit I can share: JP is the leading scorer among right wingers in my model.
  • Ryan Strome and Jujhar Khaira play about the same amount as one year ago, I have Khaira stepping up on the PK (he showed well in the metrics I value 4-on-5).
  • Kyle Brodziak takes on a big role (PK) but I don’t have him in a feature role elsewhere. If he can make a difference 4-on-5, he’ll earn his money double.
  • Drake Caggiula, Pontus Aberg and Zack Kassian get the squeeze for multiple reasons. If you are a fan of these players, you should be warmed by the knowledge that I am incorrect often when gauging the future.
  • Joe Gambardella, Cooper Marody and Tyler Benson all get cups of coffee.
  • I have Edmonton increasing power-play time and a slight decrease in PK minutes is also forecast.
  • Scottie Upshall may make the team, I chose not to include him here because he signed after I had completed the work.
  • The offense is driven once again by 97, and 29 and 93 post some wicked numbers. I haven’t projected a surprise impact forward who pops 30 goals because that’s kind of the opposite of reasonable.
  • You should not expect a major spike in my RE goals projections for this forward group. If I had to frame the results around an album title it would be “A Period of Transition” in 2018-19. You’ll know more about this team, there will be fewer question marks, but it’s still a watched pot.

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66 Responses to "Time Waits For No One"

  1. oilersjo says:

    I am very hopeful JP breaks out this year. Good to see his youthful exuberance on the ice. to get him to the next level he should be locked in a closet for a day with Tikanen learning Tikanese.. He could follow Keiths boy around the Saddledome barking in his ear.

  2. Westchester Oil says:

    ‘Time Waits for No One’ is one of the Stones most under-rated classics.

    A lot of people here, including myself, will be happy if your projection of a 3 minute decrease in ice time for Caggiula is accurate.

  3. OriginalPouzar says:

    I hope that Jesse’s estimate is shy and he has more significant even strength time on ice. I am hoping that he is given the opportunity to win the 2nd line job (or even 1st line job) out of camp and isn’t pigeon-holed in to the third line to start the year.

  4. dustrock says:

    Most curious to see how impactful Yamamoto can really be.

    He’s still young and is small. Feel like it’s more likely to be full-time AHL work than NHL this year.

    He has a ton of skill but I think he needs to learn how to fight for time and space against bigger & faster opponents.

    I think the TOI is probably fair; if he makes it, will be in skill lines. Just don’t see it this year.

  5. leadfarmer says:

    Yeah JP is going to get more TOI. If he’s getting 15 min it’s probably his last year here

  6. geowal says:

    Hope to see some good luck for Kassian this year, namely no disallowed goals.

  7. tileguy says:

    So what happens to Ty after he plays his 51 games?

  8. Oilman99 says:

    Not sure how Malone gets into 25 games unless the fourth line is totally decimated by injury, though l’m sure OP would be thrilled. If Rattie gets off to a hot start Yammy may have to play with Drai, don’t mess with a good thing. If the offence is only driven by 97,29,and 93, the team is in the same ditch as last year, this is why they should look at using the extra cash from Sekera on the LTIR to find a legitimate NHL winger to play with 29.

  9. Lowetide says:

    tileguy:
    So what happens to Ty after he plays his 51 games?

    I have his 51 games happening over 82 games. So, time with McDavid, time on fourth line, time in the pressbox.

  10. leadfarmer says:

    If our only top 6 winger misses 15 games this is going to be a very rough season.
    I doubt Rattie makes 25 games with Mcdavid. He’s a superhero. His special power is slowing down the best player in the game.
    If you take Mcdavid and turn him into someone that saws off the competition, you are a very special player.

  11. tileguy says:

    Lowetide: I have his 51 games happening over 82 games. So, time with McDavid, time on fourth line, time in the pressbox.

    i suggest he will play 80 games, 70 on the first line as his 45-50 points cannot be replaced by Yamamoto, and JP will have success stapled to Leon.

  12. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Upshall will likely make the team. He’s not washed up in his role yet.

    THe bottom 6 should be better. Upshall Brodziak Kassian should be able to saw off and contribute to a good PK.

    Strome with capable wingers should be able to saw off and the 3rd line provide help on PK and PP.

    Nuge Connor / Lucic Drai should be a solid start for the top 6. Chemistry will change things, slumps etc, injuries, but there are enough decent players to have a solid team. If the coaches have a solid plan and the players simply meet their assignments in a normal NHL way.

  13. leadfarmer says:

    Yes the numbers are very limited but Rattie without Larsson or Nurse is about a 20% GF player.
    Only reason his overall numbers aren’t absolute crap is his most common line mates were Mcdavid Nuge Drai, Nurse and Larsson

  14. --hudson-- says:

    Westchester Oil:
    ‘Time Waits for No One’ is one of the Stones most under-rated classics.

    A lot of people here, including myself, will be happy if your projection of a 3 minute decrease in ice time for Caggiula is accurate.

    For Drake I wonder how similar is his predicament similar to Cogliano. He has the legs and motor to be an effective bottom six player, but not sure he’s going to get there in an Oilers jersey.

  15. Westchester Oil says:

    Oilman99:
    Not sure how Malone gets into 25 games unless the fourth line is totally decimated by injury, though l’m sure OP would be thrilled. If Rattie gets off to a hot start Yammy may have to play with Drai, don’t mess with a good thing. If the offence is only driven by 97,29,and 93, the team is in the same ditch as last year, this is why they should look at using the extra cash from Sekera on the LTIR to find a legitimate NHL winger to play with 29.

    This reminds me. Here is a partial list of issues more important than who are 14th forward is and how many games Brad Malone plays (in no particular order):

    – Connor McDavid’s health
    – Nurse’s contract
    – bounceback season from Talbot
    – Koskinen earning his contract
    – dmen like Russell playing on their natural side
    – Puljujarvi’s ability to blossom
    – KY’s ability to blossom
    – figuring out McDavid’s wingers
    – figuring out Draisaitl’s wingers
    – Puljujarvi’s contract after this season
    – unloading one of Russell’s, Sek’s or Lucic’s contract
    – what to do with Evan Bouchard this season
    – Connor’s health
    – Matt Benning’s relationship with his grandmother
    – etc., etc., etc. 🙂

  16. Westchester Oil says:

    –hudson–: For Drake I wonder how similar is his predicament similar to Cogliano.He has the legs and motor to be an effective bottom six player, but not sure he’s going to get there in an Oilers jersey.

    I’d be pleasantly surprised if Drake came close to Cogs ability to play a ‘200 foot game’.

    And Cogs never gets injured.

    But I get your point – trading Cogliano was one of many subpar trades during the DoD.

  17. defmn says:

    Deputy chairman of the SKA board of directors Alexander Medvedev announced this evening that Slava Voynov got permission to return to the NHL

  18. jp says:

    Westchester Oil: This reminds me. Here is a partial list of issues more important than who are 14th forward is and how many games Brad Malone plays (in no particular order):

    – Connor McDavid’s health
    – Nurse’s contract
    – bounceback season from Talbot
    – Koskinen earning his contract
    – dmen like Russell playing on their natural side
    – Puljujarvi’s ability to blossom
    – KY’s ability to blossom
    – figuring out McDavid’s wingers
    – figuring out Draisaitl’s wingers
    – Puljujarvi’s contract after this season
    – unloading one of Russell’s, Sek’s or Lucic’s contract
    – what to do with Evan Bouchard this season
    – Connor’s health
    – Matt Benning’s relationship with his grandmother
    – etc., etc., etc.

    One difference is that a lot of these concerns are things no one can reasonably control or impact.

    Malone being the 14th forward, and thus how many games he ends up playing could easily be affected by bringing in an additional C to strengthen the bottom of the roster, as OP has been consistently arguing for.

    You’re right this isn’t the biggest issue facing the team, but it’s one with a relatively simple and achievable solution.

  19. Pescador says:

    Lowetide: I have his 51 games happening over 82 games. So, time with McDavid, time on fourth line, time in the pressbox.

    Followed by waivers, 2 way contract- different org, Europe,
    Fin.

  20. Pescador says:

    Scungilli Slushy:
    Upshall will likely make the team. He’s not washed up in his role yet.

    THe bottom 6 should be better. Upshall Brodziak Kassian should be able to saw off and contribute to a good PK.

    Strome with capable wingers should be able to saw off and the 3rd line provide help on PK and PP.

    Nuge Connor / Lucic Drai should be a solid start for the top 6. Chemistry will change things, slumps etc, injuries, but there are enough decent players to have a solid team. If the coaches have a solid plan and the players simply meet their assignments in a normal NHL way.

    I like this as a forth line,
    Cagguila in the press box?
    Khaira Strome Puljujarvi
    Upshall Brodziak Kassian.
    Not bad,
    Not world beating, but palatable

  21. leadfarmer says:

    defmn:
    Deputy chairman of the SKA board of directors Alexander Medvedev announced this evening that Slava Voynov got permission to return to the NHL

    Small part of me is interested and thinks people deserve a second chance. Large part of me hopes he gets punched in the face every time he steps on the ice.
    Now the question is is Chia desperate enough to save his hide to pursue

  22. jp says:

    dustrock:
    Most curious to see how impactful Yamamoto can really be.

    He’s still young and is small. Feel like it’s more likely to be full-time AHL work than NHL this year.

    He has a ton of skill but I think he needs to learn how to fight for time and space against bigger & faster opponents.

    I think the TOI is probably fair; if he makes it, will be in skill lines. Just don’t see it this year.

    It will be interesting for sure.

    I’ve been betting he sticks in a scoring role sooner than later, but the range of potential outcomes is large.

    In terms of fighting for time and space, he does have a rep of being able to initiate contact and battle effectively against bigger players. For sure he needs to continue to adjust to much stronger and faster players to make the jump, but one could make the argument (I would) that he already showed he can do that (or enough of that) in his 9 games last year.

    He couldn’t finish, but Corsi, shots, scoring chances, HD scoring chances were all elite with him on McDavid’s wing (and also McDavid’s numbers with Yamamoto were his best or 2nd best among anyone he played with). Individually Yamamoto got 23 shots in 9 games, his 5X5 shots/60 was better than any regular on the team. He was getting to spots it seems.

    Anyway, we shall see. I’m feeling optimistic, but for sure a year in the A wouldn’t hurt him either.

  23. Biggus Dickus says:

    It’s the middle of august, and I’m still not really excited about a new season. I’ve only checked this site like 3 times since the draft, instead of the normal 3+ times a day every other year. I think the Oilers finally broke me. I want to care about hockey, but I just don’t. Hopefully Connor can do something to change that, but HOPE is dead.

  24. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Looked at Bodog’s over/under lines this morning.

    Liked 6 of them enough to bet:

    ARI Over 80.5 – I sold property to put money on this line
    CAR Over 84.5 – They got 83 points last year and are much improved so I think this is a no brainer
    DAL Under 94.5 – They haven’t replaced their tough minute Dpair. Goals against may be an issue
    TOR Under 106.5 – I like TOR, but 106.5 is pretty high. Anderson has played a lot of hockey. Looked tired in the playoffs.
    VGK Under 96.5 – I don’t know if they can do what they did last year. So many career seasons. Motivation is a big deal and they have a lot less now

    EDM Over 91.5 – I’m betting on 77,6,25 being healthy. As they go, so will Talbot. Talbot won’t get over played with an expensive back up here. Special teams will turn around (4v5 will continue good run from last 2 months of season)

    Book it!!!

  25. Mantis says:

    Biggus Dickus:
    It’s the middle of august, and I’m still not really excited about a new season. I’ve only checked this site like 3 times since the draft, instead of the normal 3+ times a day every other year. I think the Oilers finally broke me. I want to care about hockey, but I just don’t. Hopefully Connor can do something to change that, but HOPE is dead.

    See how you feel when the preseason games start up, that might help get the juices flowing again. It can be very difficult to keep the excitement levels high in the dog days of summer. I’m really curious to see how things roll out. Will Bouchard impress against the lesser competition we face in the early games? Will KY show some finish that eluded him last year? Will JP get some cherry time with Connor or Drai or will they have him shoe-horned in to the 3rd line with Strome right from the get go? Will we see a waiver wire pickup, and will Nurse be signed to a bridge or playing holdout?

    There are some interesting stories playing out, and I for one can’t wait. Last season was a huge disappointment and makes me more impatient to get the next one underway. (I also got buried in our pool last year so looking for a little redemption!)

    Go Oilers!

  26. Ben says:

    Have followed this team for almost 40 years, will cheer for them (and have) through epic ineptitude and failure on and off the ice.

    If they brought in Voynov, pretty sure that would be it for me.

  27. texmex says:

    NHL source says Slava Voynov has NOT been cleared to return to the NHL.

    Per John Shannon

  28. texmex says:

    Biggus Dickus,

    I feel the same way!!! Doesn’t help that Toronto, Winnipeg and Calgary are cup contenders according to the so called experts. Yet the oilers don’t have any NHL top 6 wingers. Mind boggling

  29. Lowetide says:

    There’s no sin in backing off for your own good. That’s just good business.

  30. Gret99zky says:

    First 9 games are:

    @ NJ Devils in Europe
    @ Boston Bruins
    @ NY Rangers
    @ Winnipeg Jets
    Home vs. Boston Bruins
    Home vs. Nashville Predators
    Home vs. Pittsburgh Penguins
    Home vs. Washington Capitals
    @ Nashville Predators

    Hopefully the organization approaches these first nine games with focus and precision.

    In the past the first nine games have been very “pre-seasonesque.” Tryouts, line shuffling, and general pissing around with the roster.

    They better get it right.

  31. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    texmex:
    Biggus Dickus,

    I feel the same way!!! Doesn’t help that Toronto, Winnipeg and Calgary are cup contenders according to the so called experts. Yet the oilers don’t have any NHL top 6 wingers. Mind boggling

    I don’t see anyone having CGY as a Cup contender.

    Their O/U at Bodog is 93.5

  32. John Chambers says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Looked at Bodog’s over/under lines this morning.

    Liked 6 of them enough to bet:

    ARI Over 80.5 – I sold property to put money on this line
    CAR Over 84.5 – They got 83 points last year and are much improved so I think this is a no brainer
    DAL Under 94.5 – They haven’t replaced their tough minute Dpair.Goals against may be an issue
    TOR Under 106.5 – I like TOR, but 106.5 is pretty high.Anderson has played a lot of hockey.Looked tired in the playoffs.
    VGK Under 96.5 – I don’t know if they can do what they did last year.So many career seasons.Motivation is a big deal and they have a lot less now

    EDM Over 91.5 – I’m betting on 77,6,25 being healthy.As they go, so will Talbot.Talbot won’t get over played with an expensive back up here.Special teams will turn around (4v5 will continue good run from last 2 months of season)

    Book it!!!

    I love predicting the season Over-Under’s. Usually with 10 x $100 bets I’d figure to go 7-3.

    Last year I had Dallas over because of the additions of Radulov,Hanzal, and Bishop. Whoops. The Knights muddied the waters quite a bit.

    Now for the fun part – i agree with you on all counts except Carolina who I feel for worse. They’re down Hanifun,Lindhom, and Skinner while up Hamilton and de Haan. Goalies still suck and their young shooters won’t make up for the ~55 G loss from the lost wingers.

    The Coyotes over 80 feels like a lock if Raanta has a healthy season.

  33. texmex says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    The hockey news has them winning the pacific and losing to the jets in the conference finals

  34. leadfarmer says:

    Voynov will probably go somewhere he can hide. Like Florida or Columbus. Somewhere he can walk down the street and not get harassed.

  35. leadfarmer says:

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Looked at Bodog’s over/under lines this morning.

    Liked 6 of them enough to bet:

    ARI Over 80.5 – I sold property to put money on this line
    CAR Over 84.5 – They got 83 points last year and are much improved so I think this is a no brainer
    DAL Under 94.5 – They haven’t replaced their tough minute Dpair.Goals against may be an issue
    TOR Under 106.5 – I like TOR, but 106.5 is pretty high.Anderson has played a lot of hockey.Looked tired in the playoffs.
    VGK Under 96.5 – I don’t know if they can do what they did last year.So many career seasons.Motivation is a big deal and they have a lot less now

    EDM Over 91.5 – I’m betting on 77,6,25 being healthy.As they go, so will Talbot.Talbot won’t get over played with an expensive back up here.Special teams will turn around (4v5 will continue good run from last 2 months of season)

    Book it!!!

    Arizona should get that no problem if Raanta stays healthy.
    Carolina is breaking in multiple rookies even if they will be dominant in a few seasons Svechnikov and Necas will go through growing pains and their goalie tandem does not inspire confidence. Skinner gone, Lindholm gone, Faulk probably gone. Have them at best running in place this year
    Dallas is going all in on Bishop which is not a good bet. Heiskanen will be a good add but those easier minutes are already tied up. Definitely under.
    Tor and Vegas are tough. Toronto slight over. Vegas probably as well. That Theodore kid is a good one.
    Oil even. 87-93 pts. Depends on how much Chia tries to save his job

  36. digger50 says:

    leadfarmer:
    Voynov will probably go somewhere he can hide.Like Florida or Columbus.Somewhere he can walk down the street and not get harassed.

    Sounds like he has paid his penalty and moving forward. He should not be harassed walking down the street any more than you or I should.

  37. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    John Chambers: I love predicting the season Over-Under’s. Usually with 10 x $100 bets I’d figure to go 7-3.

    Last year I had Dallas over because of the additions of Radulov,Hanzal, and Bishop. Whoops. The Knights muddied the waters quite a bit.

    Now for the fun part – i agree with you on all counts except Carolina who I feel for worse. They’re down Hanifun,Lindhom, and Skinner while up Hamilton and de Haan. Goalies still suck and their young shooters won’t make up for the ~55 G loss from the lost wingers.

    The Coyotes over 80 feels like a lock if Raanta has a healthy season.

    Here’s the deal with CAR’s D:

    Last year Hanifin was still 3rd pair.

    Here’s their WM TOI vs. Elite Forwards:
    Slavin 47%
    Pesce 44%
    Dahlbeck 35%
    Faulk 32%
    Fleury 27%
    TVR 24%
    Hanafin 23%

    Add to that Dellow showing that Hanafin was among the most sheltered D in the NHL in terms of playing against Top 6 forwards mostly when the puck is on its way to the ozone. (On The Fly (OTF) shifts)

    While I like Hanafin, he’s young and doesn’t have history of playing in the top 4.

    Now they added two Dmen who have played Top 4 minutes, if not the toughest minutes on their team.

    Hamilton – played firsts with Gio for last 2 years, among best pairs in the NHL. Before that played 1sts with Chara. Has had very good partners, but his partners do better with him and he does well away from them as well

    De Haan – probably the most under rated UFA Dman this year. Played 1st toughs with Hamonic until Boychuk & Leddy came and then it was more of Top 4 deployment on NYI (like EDM – 4 Dmen with similar TOI vs Elites)

    De Haan has always had very strong results in a top 4 role.

    So CAR added a 2nd pair of De Haan – Hamilton that is top pair quality in addition to Slavin – Pesce

    They go from:

    Slavin-Pesce
    Fleury-Faulk
    Hanifin-TVR

    to

    Slaving-Pesce
    De Haan-Hamilton
    Fleury-TVR

    That’s really strong and it puts Fleury in the right slot in the order as well.

    I assume they move Faulk before the season starts. Probably for a forward.

    As far as the forwards go, they are adding Svechnikov, who had Hall like numbers in the OHL and also 2017 1st rounder and Vor favourite Necas will play this year.

    Aho and Teravainen being one year old/more experienced helps as well.

    Its my core theory on hockey that the Dcorps + Goalie drive the GF% (or more accurately “create the baseline GF% for a team”) and CAR just got a whole bunch better imo.

  38. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    texmex:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    The hockey news has them winning the pacific and losing to the jets in the conference finals

    I didn’t know that.

    THN is best suited to wrap fish.

  39. John Chambers says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Wow. What a detailed explanation. I feel flattered.

    Interesting tidbit about the defensemen they added and their experience against tough comp.

    Two or three teams smash their projection every year, and the Canes seem like an analytics favourite. I was chatting with a colleague from Buffalo the other day and based on their summer adds I have them in the 85 point range.

    I’m calling the Islanders to take a dive (duh), Jersey too.

    TO at 106.5 is crazy. It’s possible but everything would have to break right.

  40. leadfarmer says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    But those goalies will only drive the GF in one direction.
    Losing Skinner and Lindholm will hurt their forwards.
    Faulk will not get them a good forward or he at least shouldn’t. Their d Corp is built. Now their forwards need to grow and get their reps and their goalies need to be shot into the moon.

    But Necas and Svechnikov is 2/3 of a top line in the making. I’d have them as heads of the 2nd best prospect pool after Dahlen and Mittlestadt led Buffalo

  41. Pescador says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I didn’t know that.

    THN is best suited to wrap fish.

    especially if its flounder

  42. texmex says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    Haha.

    I wish you told me that last year before I rushed out to buy the season preview edition with McDavid and Draisiatl on the cover. Not to mention their pick to win the western conference.

  43. Pescador says:

    digger50: Sounds like he has paid his penalty and moving forward. He should not be harassed walking down the street any more than you or I should.

    best for him to end up in TOR or MTL,
    completely anonymous

  44. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Pescador: I like this as a forth line,
    Cagguila in the press box?
    KhairaStromePuljujarvi
    UpshallBrodziakKassian.
    Not bad,
    Not world beating, but palatable

    Cags Aberg Upshall Khiara Kassian I imagine will sub in based on health and results, if they do it right.

    Regardless of pay bottom 6 need to do the job. It’s trickier with players invested in by salary.

  45. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    John Chambers:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Wow. What a detailed explanation. I feel flattered.

    Interesting tidbit about the defensemen they added and their experience against tough comp.

    Two or three teams smash their projection every year, and the Canes seem like an analytics favourite. I was chatting with a colleague from Buffalo the other day and based on their summer adds I have them in the 85 point range.

    I’m calling the Islanders to take a dive (duh), Jersey too.

    TO at 106.5 is crazy. It’s possible but everything would have to break right.

    Much in the same vein as my CAR analysis I don’t see BUF being too good this year because of their Dcorps, although 85 is possible.

    They added a generational Dman, but he’ll take time to get used to the league.

    The rest of their Dcorps is kinda meh. I like Bogosian, but Scandella lost his 2LD job on MIN and got thrust into 1LD on BUF.

    BUF has been terrible at playing players above their established ability.

    Does Dahlin come in to play 1LD with Risto right away? Dunno, but I don’t see 18/19 as the year the turn to far north.

    They also lost their tough minute C in ROR (who was shit last year) Can Eichel do it? Maybe, but with no second C to help with the toughs (Sobatka maybe?) he’ll have a heavy load.

    They are a few years away yet imo

  46. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    leadfarmer:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    But those goalies will only drive the GF in one direction.
    Losing Skinner and Lindholm will hurt their forwards.
    Faulk will not get them a good forward or he at least shouldn’t.Their d Corp is built.Now their forwards need to grow and get their reps and their goalies need to be shot into the moon.

    But Necas and Svechnikov is 2/3 of a top line in the making.I’d have them as heads of the 2nd best prospect pool after Dahlen and Mittlestadt led Buffalo

    I don’t like Mzarek but I think Darling bounces back in a big way this year.

    Upgrading their 2nd to pair to a passable 1st pair will help the goalies out a ton too.

    I agree that Necas and Svechnikov might not help too much this year, but Svech rates as good as Hall if not better at this stage in his career and I think he could come out of the gate quickly.

  47. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    texmex:
    Woodguy v2.0,

    Haha.

    I wish you told me that last year before I rushed out to buy the season preview edition with McDavid and Draisiatl on the cover. Not to mention their pick to win the western conference.

    Yeah, around this time last year I was pulling my hair out about the projections for EDM.

    EDM didn’t have a 2nd pair to start the year imo. Nurse didn’t have a track record in the top 4, Sekera was gone, Russell is best suited for 3rd pair.

    Everyone had them projected high and I was like “but who will play 2nd pair?”

    Nurse progressed in a huge way last year, but then Klef went off the rails early, Larsson hurt his back and then lost his dad and they were in the ditch.

  48. Scungilli Slushy says:

    digger50: Sounds like he has paid his penalty and moving forward. He should not be harassed walking down the street any more than you or I should.

    If he’s clean and they feel he’s straightened his life around to normal pro athlete levels I’d say do it. If there is any question, no way.

    It’s not like this is a group of saints we’re talking about. Pro athletes by nature are aggressive and quite often selfish or they wouldn’t be there, and many in hockey have done and do things we haven’t heard about, like in the NFL and higher profile leagues.

    The watershed for me is whether he has sorted his life out, and that he has had to pay a price, which he has. It’s not the same as those who’ve not dealt with things or had to do their ‘time’.

  49. John Chambers says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    For Buf it’s a matter of quantity.

    New to their roster vs the start of last season they have:
    Skinner, Sobotka, Berglund, Middlestadt, Nylander, Sheary.
    They lost ROR.
    On D they added Dahlin and Hunwick.
    They’ll be better in goal too.

    Like I say not enough for playoffs, but they climb out of the basement toward respectability

  50. OriginalPouzar says:

    oilersjo:
    I am very hopeful JP breaks out this year.Good to see his youthful exuberance on the ice.to get him to the next level he should be locked in a closet for a day with Tikanen learning Tikanese..He could follow Keiths boy around the Saddledome barking in his ear.

    There is only one person that can master Tikanese – what a beauty he was.

    I’m confident in Jesse breaking out this year 20G and 50P should be the range as I anticipate most of his minutes in the top 6, hopefully the coach gives him a chance to earn a spot there for Game 1.

  51. OriginalPouzar says:

    dustrock:
    Most curious to see how impactful Yamamoto can really be.

    He’s still young and is small. Feel like it’s more likely to be full-time AHL work than NHL this year.

    He has a ton of skill but I think he needs to learn how to fight for time and space against bigger & faster opponents.

    I think the TOI is probably fair; if he makes it, will be in skill lines. Just don’t see it this year.

    I think Kailer very well may see the AHL to start the year – I think this is partially dependent on Bouchard as, if he breaks camp with the team, I think they likely go with 8D and that means there is one less forward spot on the roster.

    I don’t imagine Bouchard stays for the year and, once re-assigned, that could be when we see Kailer on the assumption he is in the range of PPG in the AHL.

    One thing to keep in mind, Kailer’s contract is subject to slide if he’s not in the NHL for 10 games – I don’t imagine he doesn’t get 10 but its a piece of info.

  52. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer:
    Yeah JP is going to get more TOI.If he’s getting 15 min it’s probably his last year here

    Why would it be his last here if he’s only got 15 minutes of ice?

    He’ll be 20 when the season finishes…..

    Oilers fans love to talk about not rushing prospects and letting them develop and giving them time but then start to waver on the same prospects when they aren’t top 6 producers within a few years.

    With all that said, I’m confident Puljujarvi is a legit top 6 right winger by Christmas, in fact, I think he might be by October 6 if provided the opportunity.

  53. OriginalPouzar says:

    Oilman99:
    Not sure how Malone gets into 25 games unless the fourth line is totally decimated by injury, though l’m sure OP would be thrilled. If Rattie gets off to a hot start Yammy may have to play with Drai, don’t mess with a good thing. If the offence is only driven by 97,29,and 93, the team is in the same ditch as last year, this is why they should look at using the extra cash from Sekera on the LTIR to find a legitimate NHL winger to play with 29.

    Malone is only 2 injuries away from the NHL (that includes Upshall on the team). Malone very well could play many games which is why I was/am adamant we need at least one more forward for depth. I still would like to look at the waiver wire prior to committing to a guy like Upshall.

    If they are comfortable that Sekera isn’t coming back this year and can find a winger with only one year and get him for cheap (with the knowledge that he’s a rental), then sure but I still think committing any future cap to an older top 6 winger is a terrible idea (as I thought in the summer).

    With our cap structure, I believe we need to fill those spots internally and we are coming close – Puljijarvi should fill one shortly and Yamamoto, while a bit more of a wild card, may fill the other soon.

    The cushion that we will get on the cap for Sekera’s LTIR goes away when he’s ready and he will be ready at some point i’m sure.

  54. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar: Why would it be his last here if he’s only got 15 minutes of ice?

    He’ll be 20 when the season finishes…..

    Oilers fans love to talk about not rushing prospects and letting them develop and giving them time but then start to waver on the same prospects when they aren’t top 6 producers within a few years.

    With all that said, I’m confident Puljujarvi is a legit top 6 right winger by Christmas, in fact, I think he might be by October 6 if provided the opportunity.

    He’s already 20 and will be 21 when season finishes. The age is not the issue. It’s the guys that take the job from him that’s the issue. If Rattie, Kassian, even Reider are taking his minutes that’s a pretty big issue.
    That’s why I disagree with LTs assessment that he gets 15 min a night. Sure if we had some RW depth that would be the issue. The only real competition for the two RW jobs are JP and Yamamoto. Rattie is a warm body. Kassian is a bottom of roster and Reider is a 3rd line player that may be a decent fill in for a period of time higher.
    I think he will get more minutes and not because he’s the best out of a lame bunch but because he will be a good player to start the year

  55. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer: Small part of me is interested and thinks people deserve a second chance.Large part of me hopes he gets punched in the face every time he steps on the ice.
    Now the question is is Chia desperate enough to save his hide to pursue

    He still needs to be reinstated by the. NHL which, to my knowledge, has not happened

  56. leadfarmer says:

    OriginalPouzar: He still needs to be reinstated by the. NHL which, to my knowledge, has not happened

    That’s not that much of a hurdle. The bigger issue is if he will be able to get a visa

  57. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer: He’s already 20 and will be 21 when season finishes.The age is not the issue. It’s the guys that take the job from him that’s the issue.If Rattie, Kassian, even Reider are taking his minutes that’s a pretty big issue.
    That’s why I disagree with LTs assessment that he gets 15 min a night.Sure if we had some RW depth that would be the issue.The only real competition for the two RW jobs are JP and Yamamoto.Rattie is a warm body.Kassian is a bottom of roster and Reider is a 3rd line player that may be a decent fill in for a period of time higher

    He was 19 the last time he played an NHL game. His birthday is in May, he will be twenty when the Oilers finish the regular season.

    Yes, of course, at some point he needs to beat out other for the top 6 job and, as it turns out, I’m confident he will do that this year if given the opportunity. With that said, I disagree that age is not a factor, this kid will be twenty for the entire regular season and he’s developing in to an NHL hockey player – players develop at different speeds – most players his age are just now eligible for the AHL.

  58. hunter1909 says:

    Biggus Dickus:
    It’s the middle of august, and I’m still not really excited about a new season. I’ve only checked this site like 3 times since the draft, instead of the normal 3+ times a day every other year. I think the Oilers finally broke me. I want to care about hockey, but I just don’t. Hopefully Connor can do something to change that, but HOPE is dead.

    1 – It’s August. No one in the NHL is even bothering about hockey right now.

    2 – Hockey is an Autumn/Winter game with an ever growing push on the spring.

    3 – I realised that Lowe+MacT were, despite lies to the contrary emanating from Rexall Place(or whatever they call it) still actively involved with the running of the team, even if it’s just in a “soft” way which totally screws the future, since who the fuck has fired employees hanging around? It’s like watching the UK version of The Office that sees the main character fired yet still showing up for work anyway. This all by itself skews my faith in any kind of impactful future.

    4 – Somehow I myself got sucked into posting here a few weeks ago. Despite no hockey, lol. it’s hilarious. Of course, I’m waiting on something to happen in my real life so have the time to waste. Most of these summer posters are fanatics, maniacs, and I really have no business trying to talk to them. These guys know so much more than I do it’s not funny. Better to wait for the reg season when normal fans are there for me to try to influence.

    Finally, once the season starts no doubt I’ll have predicted 100+ points for the bums, and will be once more 100% cynical by November 5th. Who knows? For all I know Lowe+MacT are inadvertently providing me with a fast track to Zen Enlightenment.

  59. Mr DeBakey says:

    Woodguy v2.0: EDM didn’t have a 2nd pair to start the year imo. Nurse didn’t have a track record in the top 4, Sekera was gone, Russell is best suited for 3rd pair.
    Everyone had them projected high and I was like “but who will play 2nd pair?”

    This is the single biggest reason why I went low [85 points] in Hunter’s contest.
    Plus with Gryba et al getting extra ice time on the third pairing, the D corps was looking to be weaker 2/3 of the time.

    Tom Waits for Every One!

  60. Wilde says:

    : fanatics, maniacs

    Thanks Hunter love you too

    Woodguy v2.0:
    Looked at Bodog’s over/under lines this morning.

    Liked 6 of them enough to bet:

    ARI Over 80.5

    CAR Over 84.5

    DAL Under 94.5

    TOR Under 106.5

    VGK Under 96.5

    EDM Over 91.5

    ARI/CAR – already know I’m with you on these ones, two of the best lines IMO

    VGK – This is a good one too, but it’ll be tight

    EDM – I’m going under because I’m an asshole

    I also like CAR at 10000 to win the cup and STL at 2000; PHI 2500

  61. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Mr DeBakey: This is the single biggest reason why I went low [85 points] in Hunter’s contest.
    Plus with Gryba et al getting extra ice time on the third pairing, the D corps was looking to be weaker 2/3 of the time.

    Tom Waits for Every One!

    I went full fan and and guess 93 or so last year

  62. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy v2.0: I went full and and guess 93 or so last year

    Next season if it’s no sweat I’ll go 100 points, as always(insane optimism unsustainable etc). If money is involved make it 90.

  63. Pescador says:

    leadfarmer: That’s not that much of a hurdle.The bigger issue is if he will be able to get a visa

    especially if he wants airmiles,
    they don’t just give those things away

  64. jtblack says:

    Woodguy v2.0,

    “but Svech rates as good as Hall if not better at this stage in his career and I think he could come out of the gate quickly.”

    agreed on Schevvy. I think Dahlin became the talking point and ppl underplayed just how GREAT Schevvy’s season was. Almost GPG in draft year is rare air : 26 Game poiint streak. He averaged 2 PPG after getting back from injury.

    #CalderFavorite

  65. Glovjuice says:

    –hudson–: For Drake I wonder how similar is his predicament similar to Cogliano.He has the legs and motor to be an effective bottom six player, but not sure he’s going to get there in an Oilers jersey.

    Drake is NOT that quick – he is nowhere near the skater Cogs is – stunned that people think he is quick.

  66. russ99 says:

    I think we should at least prepare for the possibility that Puljujarvi and Yamamoto is an either or proposition, at most times during the season one will be in the top 6 and one will be in the AHL.

    To expect both to break out this year is asking too much, rather it would be best that the Oilers have plans if one or both don’t break out.

    In keeping, we should look at other options at 1RW than Rattie or Yamamoto. Seems that these choices are made by “rush über alles” when a player who can retrieve the puck after the rush shot and contribute to additional shots in the sortie may be a better fit.

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