Going the Distance (Going for Speed)

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has been through a lot in his time with the Edmonton Oilers, including (incredibly) Tom Renney, Ralph Krueger, Dallas Eakins, Craig MacTavish, Todd Nelson, Todd McLellan and Ken Hitchcock as head coaches. He has played 524 regular season games, and 13 in the playoffs. I hope he gets over 100 postseason games in the years to come. He’s a gem.

The Oilers have climbed their way to the fringes of the playoff race in the Western Conference. The marathon has turned into a sprint, with every turn on the short track frantic with danger and opportunity.

THE ATHLETIC!

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 Jonathan Willis: The Oilers aren’t good, but this group has more potential than teams from the decade of darkness
  • New Lowetide: Bob Nicholson’s search continues for the Oilers new tomorrow, but at a leisurely pace.
  • Jonathan Willis: Potential GM candidates and why Edmonton needs to consider those with varied experiences.
  • Lowetide: Identifying Oilers roster needs reveals a familiar list
  • New Daniel Nugent-Bowman: How Leon Draisaitl has found ‘another level’ by matching offensive wizardry with sound positioning.
  • Lowetide: How many future NHL goal scorers are playing for the Bakersfield Condors this season?
  • Lowetide: The career destination for Oilers phenom Jesse Puljujarvi remains unknown.
  • Jonathan Willis: Learning from a flawed argument I made about Leon Draisaitl in 2016.
  • Black Dog Pat: How the Oilers can emerge from the Bob Pulford-like era they’re stuck in.
  • Lowetide: The Oilers’ deadline decisions inform what may come in spring and summer
  • Jonathan Willis: From Mikko Koskinen to Bakersfield, the next two months will reveal a lot about the Oilers
  • Lowetide: The Edmonton Oilers and the OHL.
  • Lowetide: Complete Oilers top 20 prospects, Winter 2018

OILERS AFTER 67

  • Oilers in 2015: 25-35-7, 57 points; goal differential -31
  • Oilers in 2016: 35-23-9, 79 points; goal differential +11
  • Oilers in 2017: 29-34-4, 62 points; goal differential -37
  • Oilers in 2018: 30-30-7, 67 points; goal differential -20

Hitchcock has the team 21-20-6 and it’s down to the final 15 games. I’ll suggest the Oilers need to go 10-5-0 in the final run to finish with 87 points and even that might not take you there. Hard nose the highway, but credit where due, they’re pushing.

OILERS IN MARCH

  • Oilers in March 2016: 2-1-0, four points; goal differential +2
  • Oilers in March 2017: 1-1-1, three points; goal differential -1
  • Oilers in March 2018: 1-2-0, two points; goal differential -2
  • Oilers in March 2019: 3-0-0, six points; goal differential +6

WHAT TO EXPECT IN MARCH

  • On the road to: Columbus, Buffalo (Expected 0-1-1) (Actual 2-0-0)
  • At home to: Vancouver, Toronto, NY Rangers, Minnesota (Expected 2-1-1) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • On the road to: Arizona, Vegas, St. Louis (Expected: 0-2-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Columbus, Ottawa, Los Angeles, Dallas, Anaheim (Expected: 3-1-1) (Actual)
  • Overall expected result: 5-5-4, 14 points in 14 games
  • Current results: 3-0-0, six points in three games

DEFENSE, LAST NIGHT

  • Klefbom-Larsson were 23-19 in 18:22, 15-14 shots, 0-1 goals and 7-2 HDSC. The puck was heading in a good direction all night (despite the 0-1 goals), went 16-4 against Pearson-Horvat-Roussel.
  • Sekera-Benning went 3-9 in 9:04, 2-3 shots, 1-0 goals and 1-2 HDSC. Sekera bounced around the depth chart, too, going 0-3 (52 seconds) with Nurse, 2-0 (36 seconds) with Russell, 1-0 (28 seconds, GF) with Larsson and a wild 19 seconds with Klefbom (4-0).
  • Nurse-Russell were 10-23 in 14:49, 7-8 shots, 1-1 goals and 3-8 HDSC. There was a sequence in the third period where the duo had three chances to get the puck out under control and couldn’t get it done. Eventually, Russell missed 29 with an errant pass, and Draisaitl took a penalty on the ensuing icing. This pair needs a rest.
  • Mikko Koskinen stopped 35 of 37, .946. He is .912 for the season (No. 19 among goalies 25+ games), .918 SP at evens (No. 23 among goalies 25+ games). He’s a part of this successful run.
  • NaturalStatTrick and NHL.com.

FORWARDS, LAST NIGHT

  • Nuge-McDavid-Kassian were 12-23 in 13:19, 7-10 shots, 1-0 goals and 4-7 HDSC. McDavid was flying, outstanding talent who had the puck on a string. Nuge was effective down low and on the PK, plus the lovely winning goal. Kassian is having the run of his career, with four goals (and 12 shots) in his most recent four games.
  • Gagner-Draisaitl-Chiassian went 13-16 in 13:07, 9-6 shots, 1-0 goals and 0-2 HDSC. Gagner’s pass was the kind he’s made since a rookie, cerebral and so quick the receiver is often caught unaware. His quick separation of the puck from the Canuck and then rapido pass to the slot were key elements of the goal. Chiasson appears to be at the beginning of another hot streak that will take him over 20 goals (he is at 19). Leon was incredible, winning races to the puck even if the distance was several miles, while also passing beautifully and using that big body to dominate the wall.
  • Rieder-Khaira-Brodziak were 8-7 in 7:06, 5-4 shots, no goals and 2-1 HDSC. Khaira’s return changed everything, the man is effective on the forecheck, backcheck and physically dominating. He can control the puck down low for ages and create some offense just by using brute strength. Helluva return. Rieder turned over pucks like a demon, an important asset even while he is suffering a scoring drought that could mean the end of his NHL career. Brodziak had his moments but was the third wheel on the line.
  • Lucic-Cave-Currie went 10-3 in 6:57, 6-1 shots, no goals and 3-0 HDSC. Kept the puck miles from the Edmonton net, and had three good chances to boot. This marks (imo) the best series of games this season for Lucic, and Cave is taking over some extra chores (PK). Currie didn’t post offense but was helpful on the forecheck and making sure danger didn’t appear often.

KHAIRA

  • Ken Hitchcock: “I think, moving forward, we have to get JJ Khaira up the ladder. He’s playing too well, we’ve got to move him up. So, I think in the next game he’ll get elevated and then we’ll see where we go from there.”

Khaira has shown up in good spots under Hitch (notably as LW with Nuge and Jesse Puljujarvi) and he was amazeballs last night. I still don’t know how many goals he’ll bring but there’s no doubt he’s an absolute load and has skill. Deadly combination.

Koskinen has been a big part of this run, along with the return of Oscar Klefbom and Andrej Sekera. Is this sustainable? He is past 40 games now and the schedule is welcoming for a single starter through the end of the year. He’s going to play 50+ this year barring injury, so we’ll have a good idea about him by April.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy morning, TSN1260 beginning at 10 this morning. Scheduled to appear:

  • Steve Lansky, BigMouthSports. Oilers are pushing, can they make it?
  • Frank Seravalli, TSN. The Oilers search for a general manager.
  • Matt Iwanyk, TSN1260. Oilers playoff chances and should a Gretzky/Hitchcock extension be considered?

10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. Friday, bitches!

written by

The author didn‘t add any Information to his profile yet.
Related Posts

252 Responses to "Going the Distance (Going for Speed)"

« Older Comments
  1. Reja says:

    Professor Q: Or. OR. You keep the good player and make your team better.

    If a GM thick’s Nurse is the second coming of Pronger and the return makes our team better now and the future. I make that deal.

  2. who says:

    OmJo: I think you have to try them together. Not sure who is on their off side but try to answer this question now rather than during the first quarter of next season or something. 15-16 was a long time ago.

    If it works, you don’t have to sell the house to get a 2RD. That doesn’t mean you don’t go get a 2RD this summer but it means you don’t go out and do a Hall for Larsson (Nuge for Dumba?) one for one trade to get one.

    This is the correct answer.
    Keep your best 4 dmen. I believe they should make room for 1 rookie in the top 6. The safest way to do this is to trade your 6th best dman. In my mind that is Benning. If Sekera looks healthy maybe you consider dealing Russell for greater cap relief. Not sure how realistic that would be with a 10 team list. The key is to trade 1 guy from the bottom pairing. Maybe next summer you can talk about trading a second guy, depending on how many young defenders are pushing.
    Trading Klefbom or Nurse seems a little premature this summer.

  3. Bag of Pucks says:

    ArmchairGM: It’s not a tactic. Common sense tells us that the number of NHL defenders that peaked at 23 is pretty much nil. If you disagree then simply list all the NHL defenders that peaked at 23 instead of getting your knickers in a knot.

    The question isn’t whether it’s rare for players to stall in their development. The question is whether it’s possible in Nurse’s case. And the even more important question is what his next contract looks like? If it’s aggressively negotiated on term and hit, you’re probably ok with extending the development project. If he wants to get paid like an elite D, you’re better prepping his walking papers. That’s what the GM has to consider. Not this black & white zero nuance view of the player and his alleged ‘irreplaceability.’

  4. OriginalPouzar says:

    Esposito stopped on a SH breakaway.

  5. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors fed a bit of their own medicine – hemmed in their own zone for a while (and I can’t remember the last time that really happened) – they got a clear but puck came right back in and Rychel wristed one home.

  6. ArmchairGM says:

    Bag of Pucks: The question isn’t whether it’s rare for players to stall in their development. The question is whether it’s possible in Nurse’s case. And the even more important question is what his next contract looks like? If it’s aggressively negotiated on term and hit, you’re probably ok with extending the development project. If he wants to get paid like an elite D, you’re better prepping his walking papers. That’s what the GM has to consider. Not this black & white zero nuance view of the player and his alleged ‘irreplaceability.’

    I never said he was irreplaceable at all, now you’re just putting words in my mouth. This whole conversation started when I asked Reja (who was suggesting trading Klefbom or Nurse) who would replace them – a question which has not yet been answered satisfactorily.

    I have no problem trading almost any player, but not when there isn’t a suitable replacement of equal or greater ability proven and ready. And my point was, even when the youngsters do prove that they’re ready for NHL top-4, the wise move would be to replace older, declining vets in the lineup, not the guys who are just now entering their prime.

  7. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: This whole “need to move Khaira up” verbal from the coach is frustrating.

    Gagner/Drai showed great chemistry last night – its one game but its something to build on.

    McDavid/Kass is rolling.

    Lucic/Cave/Currie has shown, over time, to be a massive possession line – playing in the offensive zone is a big damn deal when 97 and 29 are off the ice.

    Leave well enough alone coach.JJ will be fine until a move is actually needed.

    I agree, just speculating on what might happen based on Hitchcock’s verbal.

  8. ArmchairGM says:

    Bag of Pucks: The question isn’t whether it’s rare for players to stall in their development. The question is whether it’s possible in Nurse’s case.

    This smacks of Smartest Man In The Room thinking. There is zero evidence to suggest that this is indeed the case.

  9. OriginalPouzar says:

    Interesting first period so far – Condors haven’t had much possession time and that is their bread and butter, however, they’ve had 3 or 4 odd-man rushes – haven’t been able to convert yet though.

  10. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Am I the only one that gets the glitch where I quote a post but a totally random separate post shows up as the quote (under the name of the person I was trying to quote – right poster name but wrong quote)?

    Happens quite a bit to me.

    Only time that happens to me is if I’ve copied the text of a post, then quote a different post. The copied text gets inserted. It can be a useful actually if you know what’s going on. Not sure that was actually the root of your issue though.

  11. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors really came on the 2nd half of the period – ended the period with some massive pressure and scored just as the period ended – they are going to review but it looked late to me (replays are few and far between).

    No goal!

  12. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: I agree, just speculating on what might happen based on Hitchcock’s verbal.

    Oh, I know you were and, given the likelihood of moving Khaira up, your lines are not unreasonable for what coach might do – I was just pointing out how much i dislike what it does to almost all the lines.

  13. Ranford.85 says:

    This is my first post in quite some time, so go easy on me boys.
    New GM…. There’s talk of Kruger looking for a coaching job, but he’d never sign here.
    So hire him as GM. He may have limited NHL cap knowledge, but we have limited options next season unless our new GM can make a deal (a good deal).
    He’s the smartest hockey mind not in the NHL. Just like Koski. Yeah I said it.
    I doubt he’d ever touch this organization with a ten foot pole… But that’s why we need to hire him, imagine he cleared house? Kruger is my counter OEG.
    Face it, the first thing Kruger would do is fire McT, Lowe, Howson… the cancer we’ve been talking about for years. There’s still some talent in the ranks though, I for one would keep KGretzky. Bakersfield is gold and that was Chia/Gretz.

  14. Reja says:

    ArmchairGM: I never said he was irreplaceable at all, now you’re just putting words in my mouth.This whole conversation started when I asked Reja (who was suggesting trading Klefbom or Nurse) who would replace them – a question which has not yet been answered satisfactorily.

    I have no problem trading almost any player, but not when there isn’t a suitable replacement of equal or greater ability proven and ready. And my point was, even when the youngsters do prove that they’re ready for NHL top-4, the wise move would be to replace older, declining vets in the lineup, not the guys who are just now entering their prime.

    At the draft you don’t think you could get a solid proven 2d for a couple of 2nd rounders and Benning or one of our prospects besides Bouchard.

  15. jp says:

    Alpine: Friedman tossed Hextall’s name into the ring too. Said if he’s interested, they’ll interview him. And he said that Hextall would be at the top of the list with Hunter and McCrimmon, if he wants the job.

    That’s promising. Hextall was a reasonable GM, he was good at dumping some problem contracts in Philly. And apparently he was at odds with the likes of Holmgren and Clarke and didn’t listen to them. Probably the Oilers’ best option for getting rid of the relics like MacT and Howson.

    It’d certainly be interesting if they brought in a guy who lost a cup final to Lowe, MacTavish and Gretzky.

  16. OriginalPouzar says:

    Logan Day cuts the Heat lead to one goal (2-1) half way through the 2nd.

    Sweet pass by Benson. Yamamoto with an assist as well.

    Day has 30 points – most ever for a Condors’ rookie d-man.

  17. who says:

    ArmchairGM: I never said he was irreplaceable at all, now you’re just putting words in my mouth.This whole conversation started when I asked Reja (who was suggesting trading Klefbom or Nurse) who would replace them – a question which has not yet been answered satisfactorily.

    I have no problem trading almost any player, but not when there isn’t a suitable replacement of equal or greater ability proven and ready. And my point was, even when the youngsters do prove that they’re ready for NHL top-4, the wise move would be to replace older, declining vets in the lineup, not the guys who are just now entering their prime.

    Nail on the head stuff right here.

  18. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors give that one back – a shortie to Dube – blah!

  19. Ranford.85 says:

    PS…
    We finally have wealth. The best one two punch in the league, and the scary thing is Drai plays a better 200 ft game then McDavid. I’m the biggest Nuge fan, trust me, but now is the time to sell high. He’s on the same line as McD cause after centre ice he covers the centre position.
    Nuge is up for a new contract soon (same as Larsson) plus the Seattle draft… and my guess is he’d bring back a healthy scoring touch or RD with potential.
    Only if he’d resign in 2022 to play as the best 3C that ever lived at 4M a season.
    Nuge, Hall and Ebs…. we were left with the best and he’s the only future UFA I’d reisgn out of that group.

  20. Bag of Pucks says:

    ArmchairGM: This smacks of Smartest Man In The Room thinking. There is zero evidence to suggest that this is indeed the case.

    Well that’s what happens when you truncate someone’s post and eliminate the larger context.

  21. who says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Bag of Pucks: The question isn’t whether it’s rare for players to stall in their development. The question is whether it’s possible in Nurse’s case. And the even more important question is what his next contract looks like? If it’s aggressively negotiated on term and hit, you’re probably ok with extending the development project. If he wants to get paid like an elite D, you’re better prepping his walking papers. That’s what the GM has to consider. Not this black & white zero nuance view of the player and his alleged ‘irreplaceability.’

    You are clearly concerned about Nurses next contract. What is the most money you would be willing to sign him for on an eight year deal?
    Just trying to get a sense of how much you value the player. I would be willing to give him 5 to 5.5. Maybe 6. Are you worried he is going to want more?

  22. Jaxon says:

    OriginalPouzar: Guelph with a rare loss (to a real good Saginaw team mind you) – Samorukov named second star in the loss with 1G and 7 shots.

    GuelphToday: Guelph Storm’s Samorukov emerges as one of the league’s better two-way defencemen.
    https://www.guelphtoday.com/columns/saxon-on-the-storm/guelph-storms-samorukov-emerges-as-one-of-the-leagues-better-two-way-defencemen-1308849

  23. OriginalPouzar says:

    who:
    OriginalPouzar,

    You are clearly concerned about Nurses next contract. What is the most money you would be willing to sign him for on an eight year deal?
    Just trying to get a sense of how much you value the player. I would be willing to give him 5 to 5.5. Maybe 6. Are you worried he is going to want more?

    If he puts up offensive numbers next year along the lines of this year – around 40 points then, yes, I am worried he’ll demand over $6M.

  24. Pescador says:

    Ranford.85:
    PS…
    We finally have wealth. The best one two punch in the league, and the scary thing is Drai plays a better 200 ft game then McDavid. I’m the biggest Nuge fan, trust me, but now is the time to sell high. He’s on the same line as McD cause after centre ice he covers the centre position.
    Nuge is up for a new contract soon (same as Larsson) plus the Seattle draft… and my guess is he’d bring back a healthy scoring touch or RD with potential.
    Only if he’d resign in 2022 to play as the best 3C that ever lived at 4M a season.
    Nuge, Hall and Ebs…. we were left with the best and he’s the only future UFA I’d reisgn out of that group.

    Nuge already has a healthy scoring touch.
    Gotta add to this core instead of impact player out impact player in.
    I don’t think you’re selling high on RNH,
    This is the player he is

  25. jp says:

    ArmchairGM: You still haven’t explained how we replace them.

    SEKERA!!

    I’m not saying I endorse a trade, but surely you can see the logic.

    Sierra: Let’s just say this plays out and Kelfbom is traded….who plays 1LD? Nurse?This then leaves a hole at 2LD and Russell still 2RD.Sek then goes to 2LD, which he has yet to show he can handle, and newly acquired RD stopgap for the second pairing.This would then leave Russell and a rookie as the third pairing.

    I’m not convinced this makes the Oilers a better team.

    If a trade like this happens it’s most likely Nurse out since his perceived vs actual value (accounting for expected cap hit) is higher.

    Nurse for Ehlers makes the Oilers a clearly better team tomorrow IMO.

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Gagner-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Nurse-Russell

    vs

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Ehlers-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Sekera-Russell

    Is option 2 not better?

    And again, not saying this is the right move longer term, but there’s definitely some appeal.

    pts2pndr: Trading any player on a team without a replacement of equal or greater skill is bad asset management. Cap hit while very important, can not be the determining factor for player movement.

    If you have deficits in multiple places (as the Oilers do) I don’t think this holds.

    I’m with BOP on this one.

  26. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Of course, Hitch did sing the absolute praises of the Nurse/Russell pair when Russell came off IR and how it was going to be great to have the pair back…..

    Klefbom and Sekera were both out of the lineup at that point though. We were all relieved to have Russell back the night after icing all of Jones, Gravel, Manning and Petrovic.

  27. who says:

    OriginalPouzar: If he puts up offensive numbers next year along the lines of this year – around 40 points then, yes, I am worried he’ll demand over $6M.

    If he plays well next year, and he wants more than 6 million, you can explore trading him next summer. It also gives you another year to evaluate the progress of the young d prospects.
    Trading him this summer, based on what he MIGHT want next summer, makes no sense.

  28. Sierra says:

    jp,

    The original post I was replying to suggested trading Klefbom or Nurse. My response was directly related to the idea of trading Klefbom, which I’m not convinced makes the team better. The new winger needs to better the drop-off from Klefbom to Nurse and provide a value contract like Klefbom’s.

  29. JimmyV1965 says:

    Ranford.85:
    PS…
    We finally have wealth. The best one two punch in the league, and the scary thing is Drai plays a better 200 ft game then McDavid. I’m the biggest Nuge fan, trust me, but now is the time to sell high. He’s on the same line as McD cause after centre ice he covers the centre position.
    Nuge is up for a new contract soon (same as Larsson) plus the Seattle draft… and my guess is he’d bring back a healthy scoring touch or RD with potential.
    Only if he’d resign in 2022 to play as the best 3C that ever lived at 4M a season.
    Nuge, Hall and Ebs…. we were left with the best and he’s the only future UFA I’d reisgn out of that group.

    This is the same thing as trading Nurse. We need to add talent, not trade it out. We have three top six forwards. Trading one of them leaves us with two. Unless you get some massive overpay, you simply can’t trade him. And you can’t assume we will get a massive overpay. I would add one caveat. If this team sucks again next year, there is a good chance RNH decides to walk when his contract expires in two years. No one has suffered the pains of ineptitude like RNH. If the team decides on a slow rebuild, it makes sense to trade him at peak value, rather than risk losing him or trading him with only one year left on his deal.

  30. jp says:

    Sierra:
    jp,

    The original post I was replying to suggested trading Klefbom or Nurse. My response was directly related to the idea of trading Klefbom, which I’m not convinced makes the team better. The new winger needs to better the drop-off from Klefbom to Nurse and provide a value contract like Klefbom’s.

    I agree it’s harder to make something like this work with Klefbom because of the contract and lower trade value (I believe).

    That said, I still think an Ehlers for Klefbom trade makes the Oilers a better hockey team tomorrow since they have Sekera for cover.

  31. Bag of Pucks says:

    JimmyV1965: This is the same thing as trading Nurse. We need to add talent, not trade it out. We have three top six forwards. Trading one of them leaves us with two. Unless you get some massive overpay, you simply can’t trade him. And you can’t assume we will get a massive overpay. I would add one caveat. If this team sucks again next year, there is a good chance RNH decides to walk when his contract expires in two years. No one has suffered the pains of ineptitude like RNH. If the team decides on a slow rebuild, it makes sense to trade him at peak value, rather than risk losing him or trading him with only one year left on his deal.

    Nobody overpaid in the Calgary for Carolina trade and both teams got what they wanted/needed.

    This fanbase is obviously gun shy after losing too many trades. But the right ones can improve your club particularly when an org excels at both pro player evaluation and cap/contract efficiencies. To be fair, the Oil excel at neither.

  32. JimmyV1965 says:

    Bag of Pucks: Nobody overpaid in the Calgary for Carolina trade and both teams got what they wanted/needed.

    This fanbase is obviously gun shy after losing too many trades. But the right ones can improve your club particularly when an org excels at both pro player evaluation and cap/contract efficiencies. To be fair, the Oil excel at neither.

    I would say Calgary won that trade big time, but I doubt they expected Lindholm would perform the way he has this year. At the time of the trade, many people thought it was puzzling for Calgary because they gave up what appeared to be the best player in the deal with Hamilton. But we don’t know what they knew and maybe there was something with the players involved that made it attractive to them.

  33. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: SEKERA!!

    I’m not saying I endorse a trade, but surely you can see the logic.

    If a trade like this happens it’s most likely Nurse out since his perceived vs actual value (accounting for expected cap hit) is higher.

    Nurse for Ehlers makes the Oilers a clearly better team tomorrow IMO.

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Gagner-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Nurse-Russell

    vs

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Ehlers-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Sekera-Russell

    Is option 2 not better?

    And again, not saying this is the right move longer term, but there’s definitely some appeal.

    If you have deficits in multiple places (as the Oilers do) I don’t think this holds.

    I’m with BOP on this one.

    The exercise isn’t complete without filling out the 3rd pairing which seems a material negative change.

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Gagner-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Nurse-Russell
    Sekera/Benning

    vs

    Nuge-McDavid-Kassian
    Ehlers-Draisaitl-Chiasson

    Klefbom-Larsson
    Sekera-Russell
    Manning (Jones)/Benning

  34. OriginalPouzar says:

    No magic comeback for the Condors last night as they drop 4-1 to Stockton.

    Should see Shane Starrett back in tonight in SJ.

  35. OriginalPouzar says:

    who: If he plays well next year, and he wants more than 6 million, you can explore trading him next summer. It also gives you another year to evaluate the progress of the young d prospects.
    Trading him this summer, based on what he MIGHT want next summer, makes no sense.

    I don’t disagree – Nurse at $3.1M is a massive thing for the Oilers, as is Klefbom at $4.1M – those are big value contracts.

    I have zero desire to trade Nurse except for extreme value. This team needs value contracts and both those contracts are currently just that. I do think its reasonable to assume that Nurse is going to be looking for a very large contract in a year but that is not a reason to trade his current value contract.

    Sure, Nurse isn’t a perfect d-man but he just turned 24 and is making $3.1M – he is still developing and improving. This isn’t a 29 year old making $9M.

    I’m remiss to trade the plus d-man on the verge of his prime after developing him for 5-6 years – he and Klef are set to anchor that left side for years.

    There are two d-men on the wrong side of 30 making more money on the roster (and I’m a huge Sekera fan).

  36. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: I agree it’s harder to make something like this work with Klefbom because of the contract and lower trade value (I believe).

    That said, I still think an Ehlers for Klefbom trade makes the Oilers a better hockey team tomorrow since they have Sekera for cover.

    Don’t forget to add in the drop between Sekera and his replacement and then the next on the depth chart when the first injury hits…

  37. ArmchairGM says:

    Bag of Pucks: Well that’s what happens when you truncate someone’s post and eliminate the larger context.

    LOL, it’s what you’ve been saying in multiple posts in this thread. If you think I’ve taken something out of context then here’s your opportunity to correct the record… instead you just attack me. Telling.

  38. ArmchairGM says:

    Reja: At the draft you don’t think you could get a solid proven 2d for a couple of 2nd rounders and Benning or one of our prospects besides Bouchard.

    Why not use those assets to get a winger? That way you aren’t making the defense worse… and I thought your whole reasoning for trading Nurse or Klefbom was to make room for a prospect, but now you want to trade them? Doesn’t make sense.

    Look, we already need to find a stopgap defenseman to play 2RD this summer, trading 1LD or 2LD just leaves another big hole in lineup. If that’s your idea of improving the team then fill yer boots, but I think it’s a mistake.

  39. ArmchairGM says:

    who: Nail on the head stuff right here.

    Thanks.

  40. Wilde says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Am I the only one that gets the glitch where I quote a post but a totally random separate post shows up as the quote (under the name of the person I was trying to quote – right poster name but wrong quote)?

    Happens quite a bit to me.

    If you have any text on the page highlighted, that’ll be the text quoted no matter whose post you actually pressed the quote button on

    The name will be the name of the poster that you hit quote on, which can mix things up like this

    Bag of Pucks: I think this a fairly significant oversimplification of that trade.

    JimmyV1965: That is actually a gross oversimplification of what I said.

  41. ArmchairGM says:

    OriginalPouzar: If he puts up offensive numbers next year along the lines of this year – around 40 points then, yes, I am worried he’ll demand over $6M.

    I’m not worried. If he puts up similar numbers next year he’s WORTH $6M.

    Actually I did some research on the topic several months ago and came to the conclusion that $5.8M would be an appropriate proportion of an $86M cap.

  42. Andy Dufresne says:

    Gagner-Draisaitl-Chiassian

    Chaissian…….what you call Chaisson….when you cant getcha enough Kassian.

  43. OriginalPouzar says:

    Wilde: If you have any text on the page highlighted, that’ll be the text quoted no matter whose post you actually pressed the quote button on

    The name will be the name of the poster that you hit quote on, which can mix things up like this

    That is exactly what happens – thanks for the info.

  44. Andy Dufresne says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Ken Hitchcock: “I think, moving forward, we have to get JJ Khaira up the ladder. He’s playing too well, we’ve got to move him up. So, I think in the next game he’ll get elevated and then we’ll see where we go from there.”

    ———————————————–

    IMO Neither Hitch nor Tmac are chemistry coaches.

    They use the line/roster changes to reward and punish players and to try and create/change the momentum of a of the game, to gain 45 seconds of competetive advantage at key points during a game, to occsionally lift a player out of the doldrums, etc etc

    I really don’t like this.Why can’t this coach leave well enough alone with the lines?This is the same premise that led to him moving a red-hot Chiasson on to McDavid’s line – he needed more minutes.

    When lines are rolling away from McDavid – scoring or even just owning the possession game and sawing off on goals – leave them to continue, in particular if its also a non-Drai line.

    The only change I can be on board with here is to switch him and Lucic.

    Why break up either of the top two lines right now?They are producing, Drai is driving with his current linemates.
    I really don’t like this.Why can’t this coach leave well enough alone with the lines?This is the same premise that led to him moving a red-hot Chiasson on to McDavid’s line – he needed more minutes.

    When lines are rolling away from McDavid – scoring or even just owning the possession game and sawing off on goals – leave them to continue, in particular if its also a non-Drai line.

    The only change I can be on board with here is to switch him and Lucic.

    Why break up either of the top two lines right now?They are producing, Drai is driving with his current linemates.

  45. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: I’m not worried. If he puts up similar numbers next year he’s WORTH $6M.

    Actually I did some research on the topic several months ago and came to the conclusion that $5.8M would be an appropriate proportion of an $86M cap.

    Exactly and I agree.

    It seems some/many will try to discount the box-cars based on premise that he can’t pass and doesn’t have good offensive instincts – metrics such as primary vs. secondary points, TOI with McDavid, etc. will be used and even the premise that he only produces because there is no one else to produce (opportunity).

    The fact is, if he produces next year, that will be three years in a row and it will be time to simply realize that is the player he has become and he will be worth the contract.

  46. Andy Dufresne says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I remain cautiously optimistic that this indeed is a “settled in” Mikko Koskinen and this isn’t just another 10 game heater that will be followed by an ice cold stretch.

    We all know my position – up and till this recent stretch, Koskinen had either been really hot or really cold.This has lead to decent overall numbers but goaltending that was not good enough.A team can’t have a starter that is either hot or cold – they need a starter that is generally consistent – that generally gives the team a chance to win night in and night out. Steal the odd game and, of course, a stinker here and there.

    Koskinen had not done that as he was either hot or ice cold – and the ice cold stretch was over a few months.

    This recent stretch looks like more than just a heater but a goalie that has settled in. A few things drive me there:

    1) a stinker against Toronto was followed up by 2 really solid performances.Prior to that, he had not bounced back from a stinker with a plus game but a stinker led to another and the cold stretch

    2) I can’t remember which game it was but, after giving up 3 early goals, he shut the door and allowed the team to come back.Earlier in the year, whenever things did not go well early, the flood gates would open and he would get pulled – he rarely bounced back in games

    3) Last night, he let in a stinker (that first goal wasn’t bad luck, it was a bad play) and, although he didn’t look great after that, his timing was off, he ended up coming up with the saves the team needed.

    Go Mikko!

    You’re persistent Ill give you that. Its one of the things we love about you.

    But persistence in the face of facts is, shall we say less than helpful

    Here are the facts:
    From FrJohnK, LT and Woodguy.

    Here are a few sample sizes when looking at Koskinen. Save% All situations.
    .927 till Dec 11th Klefbom injury 15 games
    .855 during klefboms injury 14 games
    .918 since Klefbom is back 11 games
    .913 with McClellan 8 games
    .902 with Hitch till Talbot trade 25 games
    .934 since Talbot trade 7 games
    The Pacific Division this Year:
    David Rittich (Calgary) 36 games, .925
    Jacob Markstrom (Vancouver) 50 games, .921
    John Gibson (Anaheim) 48 games, .920
    Mikko Koskinen (Edmonton) 40 games, .918
    Darcy Kuemper (Arizona) 39 games, .917
    Marc-Andre Fleury (Vegas) 56 games, .916
    Jonathan Quick (Los Angeles) 35 games, .905
    Martin Jones (San Jose) 50 games, .895
    Those are some pretty good goalies.

    LT showed us his evidence in chart form yesterday that Kosiknen is TOP 10 in GS Ax ( Goals Saved Above Expectation ) for goalies that have played 1900 minutes or more. It measures how a goalie is performing relative to the shot quality they face. Mikko is sandwiched between Rinne and Fluery.

    Woodguy followed up by showing us Koskinen is above average with a positive GSAA*. ( there are 30 goalies in the league who are below average in GSAA)

    Briz said to ask you..”OP, Why you hef to be so stub born? Dont be Med. Just admeet it, you like him, YOU REALLY LIKE HIM!”

    Mikko is an above average Goalie when playing in front of a VERY AVERAGE but healthy defense AND when the team doesnt let him down with thier inconsistent play.
    And all of this after transitioning his LIFE to a new continent! Pretty amazing actually.

    * ( “GSAA” – Goals Saved Above Average. You take the league’s average save percentage and apply it to the amount of shots a particular goalie has faced. You get a number of goals that the average goalie in that league would have surrendered if they faced the same number of shots as the goaltender in question. That number gets compared to the number of goals surrendered by that goaltender, and a plus/minus is created. If a goalie is in the positive, that is how many goals they have saved compared to a league-average goalie.)

  47. Alpine says:

    I’m not sure Nurse is that difficult to replace, but it’s kind of contingent on a) Sekera getting close to 2016 levels and b) acquiring a 2RD to play with Russell or Sekera on the second pairing. Also much as I might rip on Russell sometimes I think might be adequate on the second pairing if he has a good RH partner.

  48. Andy Dufresne says:

    Oil2Oilers:
    Some very simplistic playoff maths;

    The Oilers and the teams they are chasing have collected about half the available points in the games they have played so far.

    In the games remaining, should the Oilers remain hot and all other teams they are chasing revert to meat, what would it take to make up the 7 point stagger?

    Should the Oilers win 12 out of the remaining 16 they would collect 8 more points than their current pace has provided. This would make up the stagger, but only just. It remains highly unlikely, as it relies on the Oilers not only being able to significantly out preform, but the rest of the pack not out preforming at all.

    I conclude the Oilers are as likely to make the playoffs as Rieder is to score a hat trick this year.

    3.6%

  49. Andy Dufresne says:

    Sierra:
    How do we reconcile Khaira’s Corsi of 40 with “Khaira has shown up in good spots under Hitch… and he was amazeballs last night”

    Is there some inherent weakness in Corsi? Without watching the game I wouldn’t expect a player with a Corsi of 40 to be described as “amazeballs.”

    Similarly, what’s with RNH and McDavid having Corsis of less than 40?

    Ps. I’m not shitting on any player, but rather trying to understand Corsi.

    Inherent weakness? Yes.

    The analytics community has been trying to understand Corsi for years now.

  50. Jaxon says:

    https://www.naturalstattrick.com/playerteams.php?fromseason=20162017&thruseason=20182019&stype=2&sit=5v5&score=all&stdoi=std&rate=n&team=ALL&pos=D&loc=B&toi=0&gpfilt=gpdate&fd=2017-03-14&td=2019-03-04&tgp=410&lines=single

    This link.
    161 game sample size puts Nurse in top 10 in 5v5 scoring.
    He just turned 24 (this would be considered his 23 yr old season).
    He is the youngest player in the top 17. He’s still young enough that he should have a few years of improvement.

    He’s fast, big, mean and has chemistry/friendship with the best player in the world. I think his biggest issue is that he tries to do too much once there is any chaos in their own end. That is why playing with Russell is the worst timeline for him. Russell’s style introduces chaos (giving up blueline, blocking shots (that rebound off him and go somewhere unpredictable, starfish to block passes, etc).

    I think it’s insanity to consider trading him unless you’re getting… I don’t even know what. Someone suggested Parayko. I like Parayko, he’s right-handed and the team needs that player. But giving up Nurse to do it just makes another hole and you’d lose out on possibly the player that will turn into that Pronger/Chara/Burns/Byfuglien type player in a playoff run. We’ve been wishing we had a tough offensive D for years. We finally have one and we jump all over ourselves trying to explain why his offense isn’t real. It’s top 10 5v5 over 161 games and it’s often against top competition!! It’s real!

  51. godot10 says:

    jp: I agree it’s harder to make something like this work with Klefbom because of the contract and lower trade value (I believe).

    That said, I still think an Ehlers for Klefbom trade makes the Oilers a better hockey team tomorrow since they have Sekera for cover.

    Every time the Klefbom has been out of the Oilers lineup or playing with a significant injury over the last four years, the Oilers basically played like a lowest decile team in the league. He arguably is the most important player on the Edmonton Oilers in terms of actually winning and losing games.

    The Oilers did worse with Hall and McDavid (and no Klefbom) than with Hall and Klefbom (no McDavid). The Oilers have done better with McDavid and Klefbom (no Hall).

    A healthy Klefbom is one of the best value contracts in the league.

  52. godot10 says:

    The main problem with Darnell Nurse is Kris Russell.

    Evan Bouchard, one he has played a year in the AHL, and one year in the NHL on the third pairing…Nurse and Bouchard each have skill sets that should ameliorate the weaknesses in the other.

« Older Comments

Leave a Reply

Want to join the discussion?
Feel free to contribute!

Leave a Reply

© Copyright - Lowetide.ca