It was one of those games you’re fairly sure of the final result but are still hoping for something positive for the losing side. If you’ve ever cheered for an expansion team you’ll know that feeling, just trying to find something to hold on to over the summer. I saw a few kids good, more in a minute.
The Athletic Edmonton features a fabulous cluster of stories (some linked below, some on the site). Great perspective from a ridiculous group of writers and analysts. Proud to be part of the group. Outstanding offer is here.
- New Lowetide: The Oilers sure have a lot of problems, but there is a simple solution.
- Jonathan Willis: Taking stock of Oilers positives as they enter the final third of a dismal 2018-19 season.
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Keith Gretzky on the Oilers trade deadline plan, Andrej Sekera’s return and Jesse Puljujarvi’s season
- Lowetide: Oilers’ potential roster upheaval might set a record for summer activity
- Jonathan Willis: Teams should beware of these players at the 2019 NHL trade deadline.
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Will he stay or will he go? Possible trade destination for Cam Talbot.
- Lowetide: Comparing Oilers prospects Tyler Benson and Kailer Yamamoto
- Lowetide: Is Ken Hitchcock helping Jesse Puljujarvi find his way as an NHL player?
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: What Connor McDavid’s evolving leadership qualities mean to the Oilers.
- Lowetide: It’s time for Oilers owner Daryl Katz to stand and deliver a winning organization.
- Lowetide: Setting the Oilers’ expected keeper list for the next GM
- Lowetide: Entry deal AHL forwards give the Oilers an excellent trade pool.
- Lowetide: If fast is the new big, how do the Edmonton Oilers get there in a hurry?
- Jonathan Willis: Analyzing how well Peter Chiarelli and Keith Gretzky restocked the Oilers with their draft work
- Lowetide: Finding a path to the playoffs may involve reckless use of future assets by the Oilers
- Jonathan Willis: An Oilers blueprint for the 2019 NHL free agency period
- Corey Pronman: 2019 NHL Draft midseason rankings
- Jonathan Willis: An Oilers blueprint for the 2019 NHL trade deadline.
- Lowetide: Edmonton’s 2019 entry draft plans may change with new GM but needs are clear
- Lowetide: Complete Oilers top 20 prospects, Winter 2018
OILERS AFTER 56
- Oilers in 2015: 22-29-5, 49 points; goal differential -27
- Oilers in 2016: 29-19-8, 66 points; goal differential +7
- Oilers in 2017: 23-29-4, 50 points; goal differential -33
- Oilers in 2018: 24-27-5, 53 points; goal differential -21
OILERS IN FEBRUARY
- Oilers in February 2016: 2-4-0, four points; goal differential -14
- Oilers in February 2017: 3-3-0, six points; goal differential -1
- Oilers in February 2018: 1-4-1, three points; goal differential -1
- Oilers in February 2019: 1-3-2, four points; goal differential -8
WHAT TO EXPECT IN FEBRUARY
- On the road to: Philadelphia, Montreal (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-2)
- At home to: Chicago (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-1-0)
- On the road to: Minnesota (Expected 0-0-1) (Actual 1-0-0)
- At home to: San Jose (Expected 0-1-0) (Actual 0-1-0)
- On the road to: Pittsburgh, Carolina, NY Islanders (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
- At home to: Arizona, NY Islanders, Anaheim (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
- On the road to: Nashville, Toronto, Ottawa (Expected 1-2-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
- Overall expected result: 7-6-1, 15 points in 14 games
- Current results: 1-3-2, four points in six games
DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT
- Gravel-Petrovic were 15-6 in 9:45, 10-6 shots, no goals and 3-4 HDSC. I liked both men’s performance, although Petrovic has a strange habit of standing there and getting run over. Went 9-1 in 5:47 against Blueger-McCann-Hornqvist, I think they earned another assignment.
- Klefbom-Larsson went 19-13 in 19:36, 12-8 shots, 1-0 goals and 4-3 HDSC. Solid performance by the two men, they are a good fit together. Went 7-11 in 10:21 (1-0 goals) against Guentzel-Crosby-Rust.
- Nurse-Russell went 18-19 in 18:30, 10-10 shots and 0-1 goals, 2-6 HDSC. The pairing is both careless and casual with the puck and it’s costing the Oilers games. The new general manager probably won’t view the tapes.
- Mikko Koskinen stopped 31 of 33, .939. He can’t let in the shortie.
- NaturalStatTrick and NHL.com.
FORWARDS, LAST NIGHT
- Draisaitl-McDavid-Kassian were 24-18 in 18:48, 1-1 goals and 5-10 in HDSC. They created offense at both ends. Went 20-20 in 16:36 against Dumoulin-Letang. McDavid had several chances to score, you give them to him over again and he cashes twice.
- Khaira-Nuge-Chiasson went 11-6 in 8:58, no goals and 2-0 HDSC. I wanted JP there but Chiasson gave the line some veteran presence. Went 12-3 in 8:13 against Riikola-Johnson.
- Lucic-Malone-Puljujarvi were 3-0 in 6:31, no shots, no goals no danger. Lucic and Puljujarvi were hilarious. Lucic passed the puck to Puljujarvi by going behind the Penguins net even though JP was right side high slot. Pulju passed the puck to Lucic as he was heading off the ice. They both tried to get out of the Edmonton zone together, looked like kids late for the school bus.
- Rieder-Cave-Rattie went 6-3 in 5:55, 5-3 shots, no goals and 2-1 HDSC. This line got things headed in a good direction.
Bakersfield Condors won last night, Andrej Sekera played well again and should be winding his way to the NHL tomorrow. Edmonton can apply for a reprieve but that’s only for a couple of games and would give them a few days to get the house in order. Elliotte Friedman mentioned a Cam Talbot for Brian Elliott trade during the game broadcast last night, the team can also waive Brandon Manning today, recall Reg tomorrow and run with 22 players (sending out the extra forward). It’s a mess.
OILERS ASSETS OUT
Since it appears we are close to the Oilers first deadline deal, I thought it would be a good idea to publish a list of possible assets out. Small problem: Does anyone want these players?
- G Cam Talbot. UFA this summer, he led the Oilers to their first playoff berth in a decade just two years ago.
- RD Matt Benning. He has one more year after this one, $1.9 million AAV. He’s averaging just 14:46 per game this year (down from 17:17) but he’s a righty and should draw interest.
- R Zack Kassian. Also on the books for another year (at $1.9 million). His recent performances should mean greater interest.
- R Jesse Puljujarvi. I hate the idea, and a true contender won’t have interest. That said, JP is a player other NHL teams may take a chance on. Don’t expect a massive return.
- R Alex Chiasson. Not sure they’ll deal him but Chiasson’s trade value might be the best in this group. He has scored 17 goals and 27 points, and has posted some offense despite the goal drought.
- L Kevin Gravel. He doesn’t cost much and he’s good. Absolutely the kind of player who has deadline value.
- LD Kris Russell. Uncertain he’d waive, but this player type is exactly the sort who has extra value at the deadline.
- L Tobias Rieder. He has good speed and can PK, someone will have interest.
- R Alex Petrovic. At the deadline we might see late interest.
- L Jujhar Khaira. I’m including him only because a team like Boston might overpay for a perceived need.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
At 10 this morning, TSN1260, we’ll roll out the top flight guests and talk Oilers summer. Scheduled to appear:
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman, The Athletic. Daniel’s interview with Keith Gretzky offers us some insight into the path forward.
- Andrew Gross, NY Newsday. We’ll chat Islanders and their impressive season.
- Frank Seravalli, TSN. Trade board includes few Oilers, how can that be? Do NHL teams dislike the Oilers stuff?
10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!