REASONABLE FOR SKILL FORWARDS ’19-20

There was lots of talk during the buyout period about Sam Gagner and his contract. It would have been a cleaner buyout than the Andrej Sekera deal that came to fruition, but the team is razor thin on the wings and Gagner can post offense. I keep thinking his ideal spot is on the No. 4 line, where he and some two-way forwards could smash the soft parade—with Connor McDavid popping in for a guest appearance from time to time. The longer I stare at this for the RE, the more I wonder.

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, here’s an incredible Offer!

  • New Lowetide: Cooper Marody’s utility gives him an edge for an Oilers roster spot in 2019-20
  • Lowetide: Ken Holland’s roster construction options for the Oilers over the next seven months.
  • Lowetide: Kailer Yamamoto has the talent to win a job with the Oilers on merit, if he’s healthy.
  • Jonathan Willis: Jesse Puljujarvi still has upside and the Oilers’ patient approach is the right one
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Dave Tippett on rounding out his coaching staff, fixing Oilers’ special teams and using Connor McDavid
  • Lowetide: Handicapping the Oilers’ young defencemen and their chances of replacing Andrej Sekera
  • Lowetide: Is Kirill Maksimov progressing as the Edmonton Oilers’ next great hope for a true homegrown sniper?
  • Jonathan Willis: Oilers ease pressure on crowded defensive pipeline by trading John Marino to the Penguins
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: What the 2021-22 Oilers might look like after their steady build toward contender status
  • Lowetide: Joel Persson is ideally situated to win an opening night roster spot with the Oilers
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: What the 2019-20 Oilers might look like without trade missteps.
  • Lowetide: Finding the best candidates for the final two spots on the Oilers skill lines in 2019-20.
  • Jonathan Willis: Projecting the Oilers’ opening night lineup, line combinations and more.
  • Lowetide: Does the James Neal acquisition impact Oilers’ prospects in 2019-20?
  • Lowetide: Oilers’ acquisition of James Neal could add badly needed scoring to the top two lines.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Ken Holland puts his stamp on the Oilers with first big move in Lucic-Neal trade
  • Jonathan Willis: Ken Holland ends an ugly situation for the Oilers by trading Milan Lucic for James Neal
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Potential free-agent options for the Oilers in 2020
  • Jonathan Willis: Which Oilers defencemen can make an outlet pass?
  • Lowetide: Looking ahead to Oilers training camp: 35 players for 23 jobs
  • Jonathan Willis: Josh Archibald won’t fix the Oilers’ biggest problems, but he’ll help with some key issues.
  • Lowetide: Will the 2019-20 Bakersfield Condors be the Oilers’ best minor-league team ever?
  • Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.

THE TOP TWO LINES

My RE estimates have three constants (McDavid, Draisaitl, Nuge) and I started with three main wingers (Kassian, Chiasson, Neal). The issue for all three complementary wingers is this: The offense is inconsistent, in the case of Kassian and Chiasson less consistent than Gagner’s bat.

So, in constructing the even strength minutes for the Oilers team, I’ve arrived at eight wingers for the McDavid and Nuge lines. That’s double what you’d ideally have in a world where the team had true depth.

Here’s the thing: The up and coming talent is going to pass the veterans sooner than later. By that I mean Tyler Benson and Cooper Marody are more useful in skill situations than Zack Kassian and Alex Chiasson.

Gagner and James Neal might be the two men who push past the big wingers and the kid wingers to shine the brightest this winter. Markus Granlund and Joakim Nygard may also impact the top six forwards.

Chances are Dave Tippett is going to shuffle like crazy through the first 40 games, and we should be prepared for a “surprise” option emerging. Who? Ideally it’s Benson, Marody or another youngster. Right now, it’s a mess. By this time next year, the team should have some answers. Hopefully those answers are inexpensive and under control.

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137 Responses to "REASONABLE FOR SKILL FORWARDS ’19-20"

  1. russ99 says:

    The whole point to acquire all the bottom six players is that with competition for spots and icetime, someone rises from the group and claims a bigger role. This may be a Phoenix-like idea rather than an Edmonton-like one, but is necessary with the cap constraints and the makeup of the roster.

    This seems much more likely than someone like Marody or Benson just clicking and sticking in a top 6 role.

    Benson especially is a difficult case to predict, since usually AHL forwards get a first NHL taste, then going back down to the AHL with an idea of what to work on to stick at the NHL level. Also Holland seems to be slow-playing the kids, so there’s a good chance he starts in the AHL then comes up when there’s an injury or an NHL player moves down due to ineffectiveness.

    Marody’s skillset puts him in the same basket as the bottom six options, IMHO, along with Gambardella. He may rise to the top, but my money is on someone like Archibald, who already plays an NHL average game and has the trust of the coach.

    If we’re looking for scoring at the NHL level to come from the system, that’s a tall order. IMO, improvement this year will come from allowing less goals rather than scoring more goals. That’s a breath of fresh air after years of Chiarelli and MacTavish plugging in a kid over his head and expecting a scorer.

  2. McNuge93 says:

    Next off season is setting up to be pretty interesting with the number of Holland’s one year experiments expiring as well as Kassian, Gagner etc. I like the idea of so many players competing for spots and for new contracts. Hopefully we have some upside surprises and over performances this season but…..

    If Pulu goes to Europe maybe we see a PTO in camp as well.

  3. Rondo says:

    Predictions are difficult, especially about the future.

  4. tileguy says:

    “Re” means what exactly?

  5. Revolved says:

    I hope you are wrong about Tippett bringing the blender for the first part of the season, LT. All but Neal, Granlund and Nygard have plenty of history to project where they could succeed on the roster. Pick your lines carefully, Mr. Tippett, and let them run. Please.

  6. Revolved says:

    tileguy,

    Reasonable Expectations

  7. Revolved says:

    Not entirely off topic repost from yesterday:

    Around this time last year I compiled and posted the average number of minutes that the top two centres from each team played with their top two line mates. Since McLellan seemed to blend lines so much, I did this in order to get a gauge for how much different coaches blended their lines.

    Not surprisingly, I found that the 17-18 Oilers had the least line stability of any NHL team that year. When I looked further, I also found a relatively strong correlation between this metric and standings points rank (Spearman = 0.554, r^2 = 0.307). Now, to see how things progressed in 18-19, I have finally compiled all the numbers for this season. All the data here is from NST.

    Average % of TOI each team’s top 2 centres spent with their top 2 linemates in 2018-19

    Calgary 73.3
    Vegas Golden 69.5
    Columbus 68.0
    Toronto Maple 64.6
    Montreal 62.7
    Boston 60.6
    Colorado 58.3
    Winnipeg 57.8
    NY Islanders 57.5
    Tampa Bay 56.4
    Buffalo 56.3
    Dallas 55.0
    Pittsburgh 54.7
    Los Angeles 54.7
    Washington 54.2
    Philadelphia 53.1
    Florida 52.7
    Minnesota 51.9
    New Jersey 51.2
    Carolina 48.8
    Arizona 48.1
    Nashville 47.8
    St Louis 47.6
    San Jose 45.7
    Detroit 44.0
    Ottawa 42.4
    Chicago 41.9
    Vancouver 38.4
    Anaheim 37.5
    Edmonton 37.0
    NY Rangers 36.4

    The rank correlation with standings points this year comes out a near identical 0.524, r^2 = 0.275, so the relationship is reproducible at the very least. To give that correlation some context, I calculated the rank correlation between standings points and some other publicly available metrics. The r^2 for

    PP% = 0.078
    PK% = 0.091
    CF% = 0.453
    SF% = 0.452
    xGF% = 0.389
    SCF% = 0.494
    HDCF% = 0.252
    GF% = 0.896

    Although special teams is important, it doesn’t decide the standings. I cannot recall the numbers, but I thought the correlation between shot attempts and winning had been decreasing, but it looks strong here. I’m surprised more granular metrics like xGF% and HDCF% don’t do a better job than just counting. Clearly scoring more goals than the other guys is a winning strategy.

    Unlike all of these results based metrics, line stability is something that coaches have a lot of control over. However, this information does not identify whether it is a cause or consequence of success. I’ll dig into that a little deeper later, but for now I just hope that Tippett can find lines he’s willing to stick to.

  8. Revolved says:

    I have now done some comparisons to see how individual teams changed their line stability year to year, and how that affected their results. The year to year correlations for different things are kind of interesting. The rank correlation r^2 for year to year

    Standings points = 0.269
    Line stability = 0.199

    If I look at the correlation between the year to year change in individual teams’ standings points and their change in line stability, I only get a correlation r^2 of 0.069, but it’s fun to look at individual cases.

    Anaheim dropped 20 spots in line stability and 15 in the rankings. Kase and Perry only managed 30 and 31 games.

    Buffalo increased 19 places in line stability, but only went up four in the standings. Reinhardt – Eichel – Skinner were together a lot.

    Columbus went up 24 spots in line stability and only went up one place in the standings. Though, they did sweep Tampa Bay directly after finishing that season. Atkinson – Dubois – Panarin were played each other the whole season.

    Los Angeles and Minnesota dropped one and two spots in line stability, but went down 18 and 13 in the standings. Is this what ageing looks like?

    Montreal went up 18 in line stability rank and 14 in the standings. Gallagher – Danault – Tatar played together a bunch.

    Nashville went down 19 places in line stability and six in standings rank. Turris only played 55 games this year.

    The St.Louis Blues dropped 11 points in line stability, but increased eight in the standings before winning the Stanley Cup. During the playoffs their line stability was up over 10% versus their regular season for what it’s worth. I’d love to do in season splits for together TOI, but haven’t found a tool.

  9. doctoreye says:

    Is Magnus Paajarvi a possible PTO? He would be a good 3rd liner and PK help,plus he is fast!

  10. Andy Dufresne says:

    Tippett is going to play the sh*t out of his veterans. Ala Shane Doan.

    I doubt the rookies / prospects will even get a sniff, and if they do it will be 13 minutes a night in the bottom six. (most likely Marody)

    I wont be at all surprised if 3 out of 4 of Kassian, Chaisson, Neal and Gagner exceed their offensive production from last year.

    Whats equally interesting to me is who will form the top two PK units?

    No McDavid No Draisaitl on the PK according to Tippett.

    Ranked from Best to next best etc, (not including Conner and Leon) who are / will be our top 6 PK forwards??

  11. frjohnk says:

    russ99: improvement this year will come from allowing less goals rather than scoring more goals.

    Average for an NHL team scoring was 243 goals last year
    We scored 229 goals and allowed 272.

    Crazy to think that Mcdavid, Drai, RNH, Chiasson and Kassian ( our 5 top goal scorers) all had career years and yet we were below average in scoring. 90 goals behind Tampa!!!!

    We had a bottom 6 that was probably on par with the worst teams in the last decade. I cant imagine it will be that bad again. If Neal play majority of the season, he should easily pass Lucics 6 goals. I like what Holland has done in the bottom 6. I will have better depth at the bottom of the lineup.

    As for the goals against, well I dont see Smith being as bad as Talbot last year so even if Koskinen = last year, this should help in the goals against.

    Injury wise we were relatively healthy with our best players ( RNH and Drai played 82 games each, McDavid missed 4 game,s illness and suspension, grrrrr ) and out of our 3 best D, Klefbom missed 21 games, Larsson and Nurse played 82 games.

    Injuries happen but if we can hope for the top 6 players have about the same health as last year and the rest have league average injuries we should still see improvement in goals for and against.

    I shudder to think of a prolonged injury to Connor and or Leon

  12. frjohnk says:

    Revolved,

    Good stuff.

    Have you factored in what trades and injuries do to line stability over a season?

  13. BONE207 says:

    Rondo:
    Predictions are difficult, especially about the future.

    20 minutes in & already a thread winner…woohoo

  14. Andy Dufresne says:

    Revolved:
    Not entirely off topic repost from yesterday:

    Around this time last year I compiled and posted the average number of minutes that the top two centres from each team played with their top two line mates. Since McLellan seemed to blend lines so much, I did this in order to get a gauge for how much different coaches blended their lines.

    Not surprisingly, I found that the 17-18 Oilers had the least line stability of any NHL team that year. When I looked further, I also found a relatively strong correlation between this metric and standings points rank (Spearman = 0.554, r^2 = 0.307). Now, to see how things progressed in 18-19, I have finally compiled all the numbers for this season. All the data here is from NST.

    Average % of TOI each team’s top 2 centres spent with their top 2 linemates in 2018-19

    Calgary73.3
    Vegas Golden69.5
    Columbus68.0
    Toronto Maple64.6
    Montreal62.7
    Boston60.6
    Colorado58.3
    Winnipeg57.8
    NY Islanders57.5
    Tampa Bay56.4
    Buffalo56.3
    Dallas55.0
    Pittsburgh54.7
    Los Angeles54.7
    Washington54.2
    Philadelphia53.1
    Florida52.7
    Minnesota51.9
    New Jersey51.2
    Carolina48.8
    Arizona48.1
    Nashville47.8
    St Louis47.6
    San Jose45.7
    Detroit44.0
    Ottawa42.4
    Chicago41.9
    Vancouver38.4
    Anaheim37.5
    Edmonton37.0
    NY Rangers36.4

    The rank correlation with standings points this year comes out a near identical 0.524, r^2 = 0.275, so the relationship is reproducible at the very least. To give that correlation some context, I calculated the rank correlation between standings points and some other publicly available metrics. The r^2 for

    PP% = 0.078
    PK% = 0.091
    CF% = 0.453
    SF% = 0.452
    xGF% = 0.389
    SCF% = 0.494
    HDCF% = 0.252
    GF% = 0.896

    Although special teams is important, it doesn’t decide the standings. I cannot recall the numbers, but I thought the correlation between shot attempts and winning had been decreasing, but it looks strong here. I’m surprised more granular metrics like xGF% and HDCF% don’t do a better job than just counting. Clearly scoring more goals than the other guys is a winning strategy.

    Unlike all of these results based metrics, line stability is something that coaches have a lot of control over. However, this information does not identify whether it is a cause or consequence of success. I’ll dig into that a little deeper later, but for now I just hope that Tippett can find lines he’s willing to stick to.

    Nice. And Interesting. Thank You.

    This site could use more “Causation and Correlation” imho.

  15. Andy Dufresne says:

    Rondo:
    Predictions are difficult, especially about the future.

    Professional Sports: “Predictably Unpredicatable” for more than a Century!

  16. jp says:

    LT, I agree Gagner is likely to play up in the lineup quite a bit. Lack of other options, plus Gagner was Tippett’s top scoring forward the last time they were in the same org.

  17. HT Joe says:

    Revolved,

    Awesome work. One question… could it be that the line stability isn’t directly impacting standings, but injuries of top 6 forwards (resulting in line stability) is driving the standings? I’m certainly not trying to undermine your posts (they’re great) but I’m curious. Thanks a lot!!

  18. Andy Dufresne says:

    This year might be the Oilers most interesting training camp ever. 🙂

  19. OriginalPouzar says:

    Going to be fun to keep an eye on Skellefteå AIK this season/

    Looks like they start with some sort of skills competition and the first preseason game is only 8 days away.

    Broberg and Berglund on the same team for the skills

    https://www.skellefteaaik.se/artikel/wwvqajyzx-5n5bi1/line-up-forsta-istraningen

    Just like last year, the first ice training of the season will be a skills competition with a match of 2 times 10 minutes that cream on the mash. Here, Skellefteå AIK and NHL players are mixed into two mixed teams that look like the following.

    Video from the archive

    At 6.30 pm we start the ice training with presentations of this year’s Skellefteå AIK players, then start the game at 19.00 (as soon as possible).

    Line-up, skills competition:

    GOAL GUARDS (Rotates in both teams)
    Gustaf Lindvall, Skellefteå AIK
    Oskar Östlund, Skellefteå AIK
    Filip Gustavsson, Ottawa Senators

    TEAM BLACK
    Adam Wilsby, Skelleftea AIK
    Philip Broberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Filip Berglund, Skelleftea AIK
    Linus Lindstrom, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Andersson Skellefteå AIK
    Andreas Wingerli, Skelleftea AIK
    Jesper Frödén, Skelleftea AIK
    Albin Eriksson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Olofsson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Berggren, Skellefteå AIK
    Rickard Hugg, Skellefteå AIK
    Tim Heed, San Jose Sharks
    Melker Karlsson, San Jose Sharks
    Adam Larsson, Edmonton Oilers
    Anton Lindholm, Colorado Avalanche
    Pierre-Édouard Bellemare, Colorado Avalanche
    Pär Lindholm, Boston Bruins

    TEAM YELLOW
    Niclas Burström, Skelleftea AIK
    Petter Granberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jocke Lindström, Skelleftea AIK
    Tom Pyatt, Skelleftea AIK
    Adam Pettersson, Skelleftea AIK
    Edwin Hedberg Skellefteå AIK
    Robin Alvarez, Skelleftea AIK
    Oscar Moller, Skelleftea AIK
    Arvid Lundberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Pudasjärven, Skellefteå AIK
    Sebastian Aho, New York Islanders
    Marcus Pettersson, Pittsburgh Penguins
    Oskar Sundqvist, St. Louis Blues
    Viktor Arvidsson, Nashville Predators
    Tim Söderlund, Chicago Blackhawks
    Oscar Lindberg

  20. jp says:

    frjohnk: Average for an NHL team scoring was 243 goals last year
    We scored 229 goals and allowed 272.

    Crazy to think that Mcdavid, Drai, RNH, Chiasson and Kassian( our 5 top goal scorers) all had career years and yet we were below average in scoring.90 goals behind Tampa!!!!

    We had a bottom 6 that was probably on par with the worst teams in the last decade. I cant imagine it will be that bad again.If Neal play majority of the season, he should easily pass Lucics 6 goals.I like what Holland has done in the bottom 6.I will have better depth at the bottom of the lineup.

    According to Gregor the Oilers depth scoring was the worst of any team since the 70’s. Almost impossible to replicate even without all the 10 goal scorers Holland brought in. (https://oilersnation.com/2019/07/05/how-will-the-edmonton-oilers-improve-part-two/)

    There is reason for optimism, but a key injury or two would certainly send things down the shitter in a hurry.

  21. OriginalPouzar says:

    From listening to Tippett last week, I think he has a more “prominent role” planned for Sam that 4th line with some PP – sounds like he plans on using him as more of a “rover” who can move up and down the lineup and between positions.

    There was talk of buying out Sam and I get it as his contract is high – however, he was near the top of the team in P/60 last season and that was predominantly away from McDavid. Sam has skill and he’s not “that old” – I don’t think his offence could have been replaced by the $2M cap savings and I’m happy that he’s on the team.

    He an Nuge should be running the 2nd power play unit and who knows where he’ll fit in at evens but I’m sure he’ll play on all four lines through the year.

  22. ArmchairGM says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Going to be fun to keep an eye on Skellefteå AIK this season/

    Looks like they start with some sort of skills competition and the first preseason game is only 8 days away.

    Broberg and Berglund on the same team for the skills

    https://www.skellefteaaik.se/artikel/wwvqajyzx-5n5bi1/line-up-forsta-istraningen

    Just like last year, the first ice training of the season will be a skills competition with a match of 2 times 10 minutes that cream on the mash. Here, Skellefteå AIK and NHL players are mixed into two mixed teams that look like the following.

    Video from the archive

    At 6.30 pm we start the ice training with presentations of this year’s Skellefteå AIK players, then start the game at 19.00 (as soon as possible).

    Line-up, skills competition:

    GOAL GUARDS (Rotates in both teams)
    Gustaf Lindvall, Skellefteå AIK
    Oskar Östlund, Skellefteå AIK
    Filip Gustavsson, Ottawa Senators

    TEAM BLACK
    Adam Wilsby, Skelleftea AIK
    Philip Broberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Filip Berglund, Skelleftea AIK
    Linus Lindstrom, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Andersson Skellefteå AIK
    Andreas Wingerli, Skelleftea AIK
    Jesper Frödén, Skelleftea AIK
    Albin Eriksson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Olofsson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Berggren, Skellefteå AIK
    Rickard Hugg, Skellefteå AIK
    Tim Heed, San Jose Sharks
    Melker Karlsson, San Jose Sharks
    Adam Larsson, Edmonton Oilers
    Anton Lindholm, Colorado Avalanche
    Pierre-Édouard Bellemare, Colorado Avalanche
    Pär Lindholm, Boston Bruins

    TEAM YELLOW
    Niclas Burström, Skelleftea AIK
    Petter Granberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jocke Lindström, Skelleftea AIK
    Tom Pyatt, Skelleftea AIK
    Adam Pettersson, Skelleftea AIK
    Edwin Hedberg Skellefteå AIK
    Robin Alvarez, Skelleftea AIK
    Oscar Moller, Skelleftea AIK
    Arvid Lundberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Pudasjärven, Skellefteå AIK
    Sebastian Aho, New York Islanders
    Marcus Pettersson, Pittsburgh Penguins
    Oskar Sundqvist, St. Louis Blues
    Viktor Arvidsson, Nashville Predators
    Tim Söderlund, Chicago Blackhawks
    Oscar Lindberg

    That’s cool, thanks! It’d be neat to see a Broberg-Larsson pairing… and I’m hopeful Broberg can get up to 2nd pairing (with Berglund) before the season is over.

  23. OriginalPouzar says:

    Not an earth-shattering view of forward deploymnet but Tippett did talk about forward pairs.

    I’d like to see:

    McCavid/Kass
    Drai/Chiasson
    Nuge/Neal

    With that said, Tippett specficially talked about:

    McDavid/Drai
    Archibald/Granlund

    I guess we could probably add:

    Nuge/Neal

    Benson/Marody are wildcards – I can do a lineup without them, however, if Benson is able to click with Drai or Nuge for 2LW, that makes things ALOT easier.

    If Marody is somehow able to win the 3C job away from Haas or Khaira, that makes things ALOT easier.

  24. Coiler says:

    Sebastian Aho, New York Islanders???

    That’s one hell of a typo.

  25. OriginalPouzar says:

    Stagimar:
    Hey guys/gals, I’m scratchin to find anything on McDavids recovery and not having much luck, anyone see anything new out there?Super curious if he will be at or close to 100% for the start of the season.

    Thanks in advance

    The last verbal from Holland, probably a month ago or so, was that everything is on track and he’ll be good to go for camp.

  26. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: I think Holland plans to use the season to find out about the 3 defensemen who will lose their waiver status this year (or possibly 4 with Persson?). I must emphasize “season” – if he wanted to find out about them by the end of October then having Russell in the lineup is a problem, otherwise it is not.

    Consider this: in 2018-19 the Oilers gave 13 defensemen NHL games, and after the top 5 the others had enough ice-time to give the coaching staff a very good idea about each’s strengths and weaknesses. They played as follows:

    Gravel: 529:31 in 36 gp
    Sekera: 395:43 in 24
    Jones: 336:33 in 17
    Garrison: 215:49 in 17
    Manning: 161:00 in 12
    Petrovic: 126:16 in 9
    Bouchard: 86:28 in 7
    Wideman: 57:10 in 5

    That’s 1900 minutes for guys who started the year as the #6D on the depth chart or lower. The year prior was similar:

    Sekera: 587:54 in 36 gp
    Auvitu: 447:19 in 33
    Davidson: 399:10 in 23
    Bear: 335:22 in 18
    Gryba: 309:24in 21
    Lowe: 27:48 in 2 games

    That’s slightly over 2100 minutes. It seems Holland has eschewed veteran D for the 7/8/9 etc. roles, so seeing the youngsters filling this chart will be the rule this year, not the exception as it has been in the past. I’m sure a few emergency minutes will be played by an AHL veteran like Lowe, but I wouldn’t be surprised to see something like this:

    Jones: 510:00 in 30 gp
    Persson: 480:00 in 30
    Lagesson: 310:00 in 20
    Bear: 250:00 in 18
    Bouchard: 240:00 in 20
    Samorukov: 72:00 in 6
    Day: 50:00 in 5
    Lowe: 30:00 in 3

    I think that’s enough minutes to give Holland a very good idea who to keep and who to move next summer.

    This is exactly what I’ve been saying – While I think that Lagesson is NHL ready now and can handle 3LD and Jones is probably NHL ready as well and maybe even Persson, at the end of the day, there will be opportunity for all these d-man and even Bouchard, assuming he’s killing it in the AHL in real top 4 minutes, as expected.

    As you post, NHL teams use many d-men in an NHL season.

    I excited to see Lagesson in the NHL but he’s unlikely to make the team out of camp due to numbers – I think we are likely to see him by mid-November – that’s how it goes.

  27. adambomb says:

    Coiler,

    It’s actually not, if you can belive it, there are two Sebastian Aho’s. One happens to be a defenceman for the Isle.

  28. Lowetide says:

    Coiler:
    Sebastian Aho, New York Islanders???

    That’s one hell of a typo.

    Incredibly, it isn’t.

  29. Jordan says:

    Probably not a big deal, but I’m not seeing new posts anymore unless I’m logged in. FYI.

    I’m going to be a bit of a dink here, and suggest something that may be somewhat unorthadox for many Oilers fans.

    Keep the same lines together for 10 game segments, barring injuries.

    If someone is injured, keep the same lines together, and bring in one player to fill that specific spot.

    Let players develop chemistry with the players they play with.

    Give each line a defined role, and the players on those lines the opportunity to grow in those roles.

    If a line is outscoring, after it’s 10 game segment ends, leave it alone.

    If a line isn’t outscoring after the 10 game segment, tinker.

    Keep the PP options aligned to 1st and 2nd lines, with spot duty for specific players on other lines as needed. As the lines are adjusted for the 10 game segments, so do the PP lines

    Keep the PK options aligned to the 3rd and 4th lines, with spot duty as needed from players on other lines as needed. As the lines are adjusted for the 10 game segments, so do the PK pairings.

    This is a recipe for success.

    Dump the blender. Build chemistry. Let the players work their way to success.

    Let the departure of MacTavish also be the end of the McBlender.

  30. Greenberg says:

    First, Tile Guy, RE generally means “in reference to”. On this blog, sometimes we get about four discussions going at once on different subjects. So a writer says, ‘Re: Oilers scoring without McDavid’. That tells the reader what subject is about to be discussed.

    Second, quit talking about ex-Oilers as if they were still magnificent. In the east, Magnus Paajarvi is no longer considered the diamond we thought he was. He is more ineffective and slower than the one we knew. Again, pay attention to what is being said in other markets about players.

    Now my issue with Resolved is probably reflective of my anti-stats prejudice. Unless Tippett has the insight of Jesus, he is not going to be willing to stick to any lines. This is a shitty team and it is not climbing out of the muck in three seconds. You are lucky if you can get one line right. And if you do, the second one is really close to getting off track. Best of luck with lines three and four. McLellan didn’t play switcheroo because he was finicky and a perfectionist. He did it because he was handed a basket of dung and asked to rearrange it. Tippett, in theory, has been handed less dung than last year’s coaches were. At least that is the hope.

    I suspect that line rearranging is a function of crappy talent as opposed to a main determinant into a team’s place in the standings. If you had McDavid, Draisaitl and Hall, and then Nuge with Panarin and Giroux, then maybe there would be fewer changes. Only a suspicion. No science behind it.

    Of course, then you would have Billy Bob Sieve in the nets and it all wouldn’t matter.

  31. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Going to be fun to keep an eye on Skellefteå AIK this season/

    Looks like they start with some sort of skills competition and the first preseason game is only 8 days away.

    Broberg and Berglund on the same team for the skills

    https://www.skellefteaaik.se/artikel/wwvqajyzx-5n5bi1/line-up-forsta-istraningen

    Just like last year, the first ice training of the season will be a skills competition with a match of 2 times 10 minutes that cream on the mash. Here, Skellefteå AIK and NHL players are mixed into two mixed teams that look like the following.

    Video from the archive

    At 6.30 pm we start the ice training with presentations of this year’s Skellefteå AIK players, then start the game at 19.00 (as soon as possible).

    Line-up, skills competition:

    GOAL GUARDS (Rotates in both teams)
    Gustaf Lindvall, Skellefteå AIK
    Oskar Östlund, Skellefteå AIK
    Filip Gustavsson, Ottawa Senators

    TEAM BLACK
    Adam Wilsby, Skelleftea AIK
    Philip Broberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Filip Berglund, Skelleftea AIK
    Linus Lindstrom, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Andersson Skellefteå AIK
    Andreas Wingerli, Skelleftea AIK
    Jesper Frödén, Skelleftea AIK
    Albin Eriksson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jacob Olofsson, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Berggren, Skellefteå AIK
    Rickard Hugg, Skellefteå AIK
    Tim Heed, San Jose Sharks
    Melker Karlsson, San Jose Sharks
    Adam Larsson, Edmonton Oilers
    Anton Lindholm, Colorado Avalanche
    Pierre-Édouard Bellemare, Colorado Avalanche
    Pär Lindholm, Boston Bruins

    TEAM YELLOW
    Niclas Burström, Skelleftea AIK
    Petter Granberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jocke Lindström, Skelleftea AIK
    Tom Pyatt, Skelleftea AIK
    Adam Pettersson, Skelleftea AIK
    Edwin Hedberg Skellefteå AIK
    Robin Alvarez, Skelleftea AIK
    Oscar Moller, Skelleftea AIK
    Arvid Lundberg, Skelleftea AIK
    Jonathan Pudasjärven, Skellefteå AIK
    Sebastian Aho, New York Islanders
    Marcus Pettersson, Pittsburgh Penguins
    Oskar Sundqvist, St. Louis Blues
    Viktor Arvidsson, Nashville Predators
    Tim Söderlund, Chicago Blackhawks
    Oscar Lindberg

    ArmchairGM: That’s cool, thanks! It’d be neat to see a Broberg-Larsson pairing… and I’m hopeful Broberg can get up to 2nd pairing (with Berglund) before the season is over.

    Was going to post the exact same about Broberg-Larsson but got interrupted at work. Hopefully they do get a spin together!

    Also, Oscar Lindberg is conspicuously still looking for work. I remain convinced Holland will bring in another forward before opening night.

  32. Stagimar says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Thank you, also last I heard, they sure are hush, kinda scares me a bit.

  33. JimmyV1965 says:

    Greenberg:
    First, Tile Guy, RE generally means “in reference to”. On this blog, sometimes we get about four discussions going at once on different subjects. So a writer says, ‘Re: Oilers scoring without McDavid’. That tells the reader what subject is about to be discussed.

    Second, quit talking about ex-Oilers as if they were still magnificent. In the east, Magnus Paajarvi is no longer considered the diamond we thought he was. He is more ineffective and slower than the one we knew. Again, pay attention to what is being said in other markets about players.

    Now my issue with Resolved is probably reflective of my anti-stats prejudice. Unless Tippett has the insight of Jesus, he is not going to be willing to stick to any lines. This is a shitty team and it is not climbing out of the muck in three seconds. You are lucky if you can get one line right. And if you do, the second one is really close to getting off track. Best of luck with lines three and four. McLellan didn’t play switcheroo because he was finicky and a perfectionist. He did it because he was handed a basket of dung and asked to rearrange it. Tippett, in theory, has been handedless dung than last year’s coaches were. At least that is the hope.

    I suspect that line rearranging is a function of crappy talent as opposed to a main determinant into a team’s place in the standings. If you had McDavid, Draisaitl and Hall, and then Nuge with Panarin and Giroux, then maybe there would be fewer changes. Only a suspicion. No science behind it.

    Of course, then you would have Billy Bob Sieve in the nets and it all wouldn’t matter.

    Agreed. Line shuffling won’t stop until the team has better players. When Chiasson goes 15 games without a goal, he’s getting moved. Drai will continue to play big minutes with McDavid until we get at least four guys in the top six. This team simply doesn’t have enough talent for line stability.

  34. ArmchairGM says:

    jp: According to Gregor the Oilers depth scoring was the worst of any team since the 70’s. Almost impossible to replicate even without all the 10 goal scorers Holland brought in. (https://oilersnation.com/2019/07/05/how-will-the-edmonton-oilers-improve-part-two/)

    There is reason for optimism, but a key injury or two would certainly send things down the shitter in a hurry.

    All the 10-goal scorers? You do realize that Reider was considered a sure bet to score 10, right? Don’t be so sure that last year is “almost impossible” to replicate.

  35. Melvis says:

    As I was swiping at wiffle balls with a 7 iron in the backyard around 5:00 am, absolutely determined to break my best round ever – a 63…I’m talking front nine;-) I don’t play golf so much as play the fool.

    Anyway…a passing thought. Do Woodguy and Bendelson golf?

    A fun time might be had on a nice day in Sept after training camp opens on one of those open to the public days.

  36. Jordan says:

    Greenberg:
    First, Tile Guy, RE generally means “in reference to”. On this blog, sometimes we get about four discussions going at once on different subjects. So a writer says, ‘Re: Oilers scoring without McDavid’. That tells the reader what subject is about to be discussed.

    Second, quit talking about ex-Oilers as if they were still magnificent. In the east, Magnus Paajarvi is no longer considered the diamond we thought he was. He is more ineffective and slower than the one we knew. Again, pay attention to what is being said in other markets about players.

    Now my issue with Resolved is probably reflective of my anti-stats prejudice. Unless Tippett has the insight of Jesus, he is not going to be willing to stick to any lines. This is a shitty team and it is not climbing out of the muck in three seconds. You are lucky if you can get one line right. And if you do, the second one is really close to getting off track. Best of luck with lines three and four. McLellan didn’t play switcheroo because he was finicky and a perfectionist. He did it because he was handed a basket of dung and asked to rearrange it. Tippett, in theory, has been handedless dung than last year’s coaches were. At least that is the hope.

    I suspect that line rearranging is a function of crappy talent as opposed to a main determinant into a team’s place in the standings. If you had McDavid, Draisaitl and Hall, and then Nuge with Panarin and Giroux, then maybe there would be fewer changes. Only a suspicion. No science behind it.

    Of course, then you would have Billy Bob Sieve in the nets and it all wouldn’t matter.

    I’m more than a little surprised you bothered to post anything at all here.

    You aren’t a stats guy, and you’re posting a hockey stats blog.

    You’re take on the Oilers demonstrates a lot of bitterness about the team, and the quality of players currently on the roster. You don’t have any confidence in the goalies, and your suggestion about building a good team outlines players who might make up the top two lines of an all-star team.

    And on the blog, RE in terms of Lowetide’s blog posts does refer to reasonable expectations – has for more than a decade.

    If you’re new here, welcome to the community. If you’re not, please don’t troll?

  37. norm_klassen says:

    That’s why Holland brought in Archibald and granlund and junco hoping at least one guy hits for ten goals

  38. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Just to wrap up a discussion from late in the last thread:

    OriginalPouzar:I’m not against using Russell in that 6/7 role but I just don’t think our veteran coach will do that to start the year.

    Todd McLellan opted to sit veteran Andrew Ference in favour of Griffin Reinhart to start the 15/16 season, did he not? I realize it only lasted a couple games but it’s not unprecedented for a veteran coach to sit a veteran player in an effort to see who brings what. KR will play most of the season, but he would be my choice to sit for a spell while Tippett evaluates the waiver eligible crowd.

  39. blainer says:

    Correct me if I’m wrong but I seem to remember that those damned backup goalies we faced last year on the opposite teams back to back games just played lights out against us. Man that pissed me off. It seemed I was always happy to see the teams backup only for us to out shoot the opposition like 38 – 23 and still lose the game 4-1.. and on more than a few occasions Tabs had let the first shot go in so we already had the scoring effects starting to kick in.

    Hopefully our goaltenders stop the first shot this year no matter how high danger it is. It just kills the team when that happens regularly.

    I would have to think our bottom six was the victim of such outstanding goalering from the backups on so many nights but i could be wrong. They still should have did better than they did and I do believe the bottom six will be much better this year.

    My spidey senses also tell me Holland will have a deal done with JP by the season opener and that it will be for a similar struggling player.. hopefully a RT shot center.

  40. Munny says:

    Revolved: Average % of TOI each team’s top 2 centres spent with their top 2 linemates in 2018-19

    Just to clarify, is “Top 2 linemates” the two linemates they spent the most time with? Or is it by scoring/scoring rates?

  41. jp says:

    ArmchairGM: All the 10-goal scorers? You do realize that Reider was considered a sure bet to score 10, right? Don’t be so sure that last year is “almost impossible” to replicate.

    The Oilers 6-14 forwards scored less than any other team in the last 40 years. I believe that will be near impossible to replicate.

    Also, I said “even without” the 10 goal scorers. Clearly none of these guys are guaranteed to reach 10, and some are likely to flop like Rieder. But Holland has brought in multiple new players with a history of modest contribution. Plus there is no expectation of the younger players contributing (which they well could).

    IMO it’s 95% or better that the Oilers 6-14 score more than 44 goals in 2019-20.

  42. Side says:

    jp: The Oilers 6-14 forwards scored less than any other team in the last 40 years. I believe that will be near impossible to replicate.

    Also, I said “even without” the 10 goal scorers. Clearly none of these guys are guaranteed to reach 10, and some are likely to flop like Rieder. But Holland has brought in multiple new players with a history of modest contribution. Plus there is no expectation of the younger players contributing (which they well could).

    IMO it’s 95% or better that the Oilers 6-14 score more than 44 goals in 2019-20.

    Yeah if the other forwards Holland brought in all had a whopping 0% shooting percentage on 92 shots like Rieder.. I would be convinced we all live in the Matrix and someone programmed that to happen.

  43. Ryan says:

    jp,

    Has anyone done any analysis on the bottom six for Tippett’s last few rosters?

    I’m curious how they did in terms of basics cf% gf% compared to our last few seasons.

  44. ArmchairGM says:

    jp: The Oilers 6-14 forwards scored less than any other team in the last 40 years. I believe that will be near impossible to replicate.

    NEVER underestimate the Oilers.

  45. Ryan says:

    Jordan,

    Greenberg’s been here for a while. Probably the longest post I’ve seen from them.

    Made a few good points, so I wouldn’t call it trolling.

    I agree that the line blenders are driven by the lack of talented players on the roster.

  46. jp says:

    Re: Gagner’s role this coming season. Since he left the Oilers in 2014 he’s played for Arizona, Philadelphia, Columbus, Vancouver and the Oilers again (also some AHL time in there).

    He’s jumped around a ton and clearly has significant warts to his game. Through all that he managed to score at a rate of 82-15-24-39. I was really surprised it was that much – he still has skill.

    His previous scoring rates guarantee nothing obviously, but I do think he could really surprise this year if he does find a spot in the top 6. 17 goals and 45 points? We’ll see, but Gagner seems to me every bit as good candidate for those minutes as Chiasson or the other available options.

  47. jp says:

    Ryan:
    jp,

    Has anyone done any analysis on the bottom six for Tippett’s last few rosters?

    I’m curious how they did in terms of basics cf% gf% compared to our last few seasons.

    Not that I’m aware. But I’d be curious to see that too (I’m not about to wade into it at the moment!).

  48. jtblack says:

    There is more than 1 A – HOLE in the NHL …..

    I mean AHO

  49. jtblack says:

    ” Right now, it’s a mess. By this time next year, the team should have some answers. ”

    Agree with this. This will be a learning / auditioning season. New GM, New Coach. A bunch of new players. Some actually emerging young talent …

    Anything close to 90 points would be excellent this season.

    Next season the expectation HAS to be Playoffs. That would be Connor’s 6th season. Man time flies

  50. Ryan says:

    Ryan,

    I don’t have much time right now.

    For 16-17

    centres by toi / g. cf% / GF %

    1 Max Domi – 45 / 48
    2 Martin Hanzal – 47/ 41
    3 Christian Dvorak – 43 /53
    4 Alexander Burmistrov – 41/44
    5 Peter Holland – 44/38
    6 Ryan White – 42 / 41
    7 Laurent Dauphin 46 /40

    Basically, the entire team got caved in.

    For 15- 16

    Player
    1 Brad Richardson – 52/ 57
    2 Martin Hanzal – 57/55
    3 Antoine Vermette – 52 /44
    4 Boyd Gordon – 41 / 30
    5 Kyle Chipchura – 46 /39

  51. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Archie Henderson saying on ON that Howson will be contributing in a pro scouting role this season. Said the plan is to expand the professional department at some point, but status quo for now as the incumbents are under contract.

  52. jp says:

    Ryan:
    Ryan,

    I don’t have much time right now.

    For 16-17

    centres by toi / g. cf% / GF %

    1Max Domi– 45 / 48
    2Martin Hanzal – 47/ 41
    3Christian Dvorak– 43 /53
    4Alexander Burmistrov – 41/44
    5Peter Holland – 44/38
    6Ryan White – 42 / 41
    7Laurent Dauphin 46 /40

    Basically, the entire team got caved in.

    For 15- 16

    Player
    1Brad Richardson– 52/ 57
    2Martin Hanzal– 57/55
    3Antoine Vermette– 52 /44
    4Boyd Gordon– 41 / 30
    5Kyle Chipchura– 46 /39

    By faceoffs, at 5on5 (Domi didn’t actually play center for instance; I’m including anyone over 200FO)

    16-17
    Hanzal 47/41
    Martinook 46/47
    Dvorak 43/54
    Holland (40GP) 45/38
    Jooris (42GP) 45/42
    Burmistrov (26GP) 41/44
    Richardson (16GP) 44/40
    (Hanzal/Dvorak were top 6 I assume)

    15-16
    Vermette 46/44
    Hanzal 50/55
    Richardson 46/57
    Gordon 43/30
    (Hanzal/Vermette top 6)

    14-15
    Vermette 48/37
    Chipchura 50/30
    Gagner 52/41
    Vitale 43/34
    Hanzal (37GP) 52/48
    Arcobello (27GP) 53/46
    (Hanzal was top 6 when healthy with Vermette or Gagner. Presumably one of the latter got bumped down or to the wing when Hanzal was healthy)

    Not sure what to take from this. Arizona was a bad team. Their bottom 6 was worse than their top 6, but both were bad.

  53. powerploy says:

    I think the biggest benefit will be the improved bottom 6 and improved backup goalie (or tandom goalie) providing for reduced minutes by some of the top 6 (ie McDaivid/drai/nuge/Larsen/goalie) so they can concentrate on player better/minutes played. Finding people who can take on the special roles and still pop a few goals, may allow for better quality time from some of top six plus goalie. When your team is poor you rely too much on top players and they sometimes just don’t have the gas when they really need it, especially towards the end of the season. Goaltending and Larson are 2 I think were 2 especially overplayed last year, and who were dealing with other issues (Larsen-back, goaling- new league/travel/lot more games).The effect adds up over time. I think the result is going to be less goals against and more goals for, the combination of the 2 means you don’t need a big difference in either, just a moderate difference. This doesn’t mean you won’t ever put top six on penalty kill, just much reduce it. Some times a break out threat by McDavid keeps the oppositions power play more cautious.

  54. OriginalPouzar says:

    russ:
    The whole point to acquire all the bottom six players is that with competition for spots and icetime, someone rises from the group and claims a bigger role. This may be a Phoenix-like idea rather than an Edmonton-like one, but is necessary with the cap constraints and the makeup of the roster.

    This seems much more likely than someone like Marody or Benson just clicking and sticking in a top 6 role.

    Benson especially is a difficult case to predict, since usually AHL forwards get a first NHL taste, then going back down to the AHL with an idea of what to work on to stick at the NHL level. Also Holland seems to be slow-playing the kids, so there’s a good chance he starts in the AHL then comes up when there’s an injury or an NHL player moves down due to ineffectiveness.

    Marody’s skillset puts him in the same basket as the bottom six options, IMHO, along with Gambardella. He may rise to the top, but my money is on someone like Archibald, who already plays an NHL average game and has the trust of the coach.

    If we’re looking for scoring at the NHL level to come from the system, that’s a tall order. IMO, improvement this year will come from allowing less goals rather than scoring more goals. That’s a breath of fresh air after years of Chiarelli and MacTavish plugging in a kid over his head and expecting a scorer.

    You very well could be right on Benson although I will remain hopeful that this high skill, high pedigree, high work ethic, high IQ player will win a 2LW (maybe 3LW graduating to 2LW) and never look back. He’s healthy and he’s regaining the pedigree that would have had him as a mid 1st round pick if not for the injuries.

    I think you may be underselling Marody’s potential a bit. You could be right, he could top out as a bottom 6 players (if not a tweener) but I believe he is more skilled than I infer from your post.

    While older than Benson by a year and half (I think), he was indeed the primary driver of the offence on the Condors, bar none – he was a possession monster, all year long.

    I like Joe G., and he scored alot of goals last year, but he’s turning 26 before the calendar year is over and 3 full years older than Marody – the middle 6 potential for Marody very much exceeds that of a Joe G.

    In my opinion.

  55. OriginalPouzar says:

    doctoreye:
    Is Magnus Paajarvi a possible PTO? He would be a good 3rd liner and PK help,plus he is fast!

    I would suggest a tweak to your post – delete 3rd liner and insert 4th liner.

    I have ALOT of time for Magnus but there are alot of players under contract already.

    No harm in a PTO although, from accounts, we shouldn’t expect many (any).

    As long as Upshall isn’t invited……

  56. jp says:

    Who’s going to PK in 2019-20? I dunno, but here are the xGA for the Oilers and their new pickups over the past 2 seasons (of 199 forwards >100 PK minutes)

    McDavid 6.01(38th)
    Kassian 6.33 (60th)
    Draisaitl 6.39 (65th)
    Archibald 6.45 (69th)
    Granlund 6.53 (74th)
    Khaira 6.59 (79th)
    Brodziak 6.90 (106th)
    Nuge 7.82 (170th)

    Reducing McDavid and Draisaitl’s minutes might actually hurt the PK a bit, but the new guys are decent at least.

    Also, for those thinking of a JP for Zacha swap, the latter is among the best penalty killers in the league by numbers (top 5 in all of CA, FA, SA, GA, xGA, SCA and HDCA). Huh.

  57. HT Joe says:

    Non-mathy comment: Gagner just seemed revitalized to be an Oiler again. All the verbal seems great. He passed the eye test during his limited run with the Oil last season. I’m super optimistic that he can play the role of offensive winger if attached to one of our “big three” centres. I’m cheering like hell for him.

  58. Ryan says:

    jp,

    Thanks.

    I was hoping to see that Tippett was a bottom six whisperer, but I guess that’s not the case. Nobody’s a magigician.

    It always seemed like he was when we played against his teams for some reason.

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    AndyDufresne:
    Tippett is going to play the sh*t out of his veterans. Ala Shane Doan.

    I doubt the rookies / prospects will even get a sniff, and if they do it will be 13 minutes a night in the bottom six. (most likely Marody)

    I wont be at all surprised if 3 out of 4 of Kassian, Chaisson, Neal and Gagner exceed their offensive production from last year.

    Whats equally interesting to me is who will form the top two PK units?

    No McDavid No Draisaitl on the PK according to Tippett.

    Ranked from Best to next best etc, (not including Conner and Leon)who are / will be our top 6 PK forwards??

    I’m not so sure – I checked a couple of random seasons for the Yotes and each season Doan was around 13 5 on 5 minutes per game. One season, a young Connor Brown has legit 2nd pairing ice, for example.

    We’ll see.

    I’m not sure Tippett said they’d never play on the PK but would play less. I think we’ll still see Drai out there a bit – in particular if we are struggling on PK faceoffs.

    I think we’ll see Archibald/Granlund as a PK pair.

    Nuge, Kassian will be on the PK – maybe a pair.

    Kharia, Nygard

  60. jp says:

    I used xGA rather than GA above because the sample sizes are so small. Here are the actual GA/60 which gives a bit of a different view, and also illustrates how big a gap there can be between the two numbers. (as above, this is rank among the 199 forwards with >100 minutes PK TOI over the past 2 seasons)

    Archibald 4.92 (17th)
    Khaira 5.92 (36th)
    Kassian 8.36 (157th)
    McDavid 8.61 (165th)
    Draisaitl 8.61 (166th)
    Granlund 8.69 (170th)
    Brodziak 8.98 (174th)
    Nuge 10.72 (197th)

    I think the xGA is more accurate given the sample size. And I think Archibald and Khaira being elite penalty killers is a bit of a mirage (though both are above average by xGA too). Nuge does seem to be really very bad.

    PK on ice save percentage: Nuge 190th, Draisaitl 194th, McDavid 199th of 199.

  61. OriginalPouzar says:

    ArmchairGM: That’s cool, thanks! It’d be neat to see a Broberg-Larsson pairing… and I’m hopeful Broberg can get up to 2nd pairing (with Berglund) before the season is over.

    That’s my goal for Brogerg as well, to earn the trust of the coach and have his minutes increases as the season goes on culminating in legit top 4 minutes by the end of the year.

  62. Reja says:

    HT Joe:
    Non-mathy comment:Gagner just seemed revitalized to be an Oiler again. All the verbal seems great. He passed the eye test during his limited run with the Oil last season. I’m super optimistic that he can play the role of offensive winger if attached to one of our “big three” centres.I’m cheering like hell for him.

    Gagner and Smith or Tippett’s boys he will put both in a position to succeed.

  63. OriginalPouzar says:

    Do we all agree that Nuge should be running the second power play unit and that it doesn’t make sense to have him on PP1 along with two other puck distributors like McDavid and Drai (although Drai plays more of a shooter role on the PP)?

  64. HT Joe says:

    Reja: Gagner and Smith or Tippett’s boys he will put both in a position to succeed.

    I’m squinting at the distance and think I see unicorns!! 😉

  65. jp says:

    Ryan:
    jp,

    Thanks.

    I was hoping to see that Tippett was a bottom six whisperer, but I guess that’s not the case. Nobody’s a magigician.

    It always seemed like he was when we played against his teams for some reason.

    Yeah, apparently not. Maybe it just “seemed” like the Oilers were playing the Coyotes bottom 6…

    They had some ugly teams. Top 6 forward scorers by year:
    16-17
    Vrbata (55), Domi (38), Rieder (34), Dvorak (33), Doan (27), Hanzal (26)
    15-16
    Domi (52), Doan (47), Duclair (44), Hanzal (41), Boedker (39), Vermette (38)
    14-15
    Gagner (41), Doan (36), Vermette (35), Erat (32), Boedker (28), Hanzal (24)

  66. OriginalPouzar says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    Just to wrap up a discussion from late in the last thread:

    Todd McLellan opted to sit veteran Andrew Ference in favour of Griffin Reinhart to start the 15/16 season, did he not?I realize it only lasted a couple games but it’s not unprecedented for a veteran coach to sit a veteran player in an effort to see who brings what.KR will play most of the season, but he would be my choice to sit for a spell while Tippett evaluates the waiver eligible crowd.

    For sure its not unheard of and I’m not even against the idea (I would prefer Lagesson at 3LD), I just don’t see Tippett doing it right off the start.

    Lagesson, Jones, Bear losing their waiver exempt after this year shouldn’t play in to roster/lineup decisions in October. There will be lots of ice for all of them to get viewed as the season goes on.

    Hey, if Tippett things Lagesson/Person or Jones/Persson or Lagesson/Jones gives the team the best chance to win on October 2, sure, he’ll go for it, I just don’t anticipate that will be his position.

    Could be wrong.

  67. pts2pndr says:

    Rondo:
    Predictions are difficult, especially about the future.

    Is that a quote from Casey Stengel?

  68. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp:
    Who’s going to PK in 2019-20? I dunno, but here are the xGA for the Oilers and their new pickups over the past 2 seasons (of 199 forwards 100 PK minutes)

    McDavid 6.01(38th)
    Kassian 6.33 (60th)
    Draisaitl 6.39 (65th)
    Archibald 6.45 (69th)
    Granlund 6.53 (74th)
    Khaira 6.59 (79th)
    Brodziak 6.90 (106th)
    Nuge 7.82 (170th)

    Reducing McDavid and Draisaitl’s minutes might actually hurt the PK a bit, but the new guys are decent at least.

    Also, for those thinking of a JP for Zacha swap, the latter is among the best penalty killers in the league by numbers (top 5 in all of CA, FA, SA, GA, xGA, SCA and HDCA). Huh.

    How are the “expected” numbers calculated? I’ve always wondered this but never asked the question.

    IIRC from look previously, McDavid was among the worst forwards as far 4 on 5 GA/60 although near the top in 4 on 5 SA/60.

    How does one go from bad GA/60 to good xGA/60?

    Does it bring shot quantity and quality in to account?

  69. Revolved says:

    FRJohnK,
    Andy Dufresne,
    HT JOE,

    Thanks guys. I have not looked league wide, but I did find it interesting to look at the teams who moved around in the rankings. Some had injuries, some not. The Oilers had very unstable lines and it was not due to injury. I think it is primarily a coaching decision driven by results (thus good teams have stable lines) and circumstances like injuries.

  70. pts2pndr says:

    BONE207: 20 minutes in & already a thread winner…woohoo

    Stengel or Berra? Love it.

  71. Revolved says:

    Greenberg,
    JIMMYV1965,

    I agree, I would be surprised if Tippett increased line stability drastically. However, that doesn’t mean he couldn’t or shouldn’t. There are a lot of players who have no business playing with stars, and yet when they get the chance sometimes they become stars too – even if only for a season.

    For instance, I think that Khaira could be a great LW for McDavid. Given how much it would help the team and allow their minutes to be reduced, I think having Draisaitl on the second line would be worth it. I know I am in the minority, but I will be very disappointed if Tippett starts with Draisaitl – McDavid – Kassian. It would show a complete lack of imagination and the team did not win that way last season, so why continue with it?

  72. Revolved says:

    MUNNY,

    Top two line mates are the two forward with the most 5×5 TOI with a centre. I can post players and data if people are interested.

  73. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Do we all agree that Nuge should be running the second power play unit and that it doesn’t make sense to have him on PP1 along with two other puck distributors like McDavid and Drai (although Drai plays more of a shooter role on the PP)?

    Nuge sure had a lot of good looks with his snap shot on the PP would Neal work in that spot.

  74. Revolved says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    xGF/xGA is a shot quality measure like DFF, so it largely mirrors shot data. I was surprised to see that xGF% and HDCF% were less correlated with standings points than the raw values.

  75. Darth Tu says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Do we all agree that Nuge should be running the second power play unit and that it doesn’t make sense to have him on PP1 along with two other puck distributors like McDavid and Drai (although Drai plays more of a shooter role on the PP)?

    I’m in agreement on that. In terms of forwards….

    Get Nuge onto PP2 with Gagner and Khaira (net front) plus whoever else can earn a slot.

    PP1 would be McDavid, Drai, Chiasson, Neil.

  76. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: How are the “expected” numbers calculated? I’ve always wondered this but never asked the question.

    IIRC from look previously, McDavid was among the worst forwards as far 4 on 5 GA/60 although near the top in 4 on 5 SA/60.

    How does one go from bad GA/60 to good xGA/60?

    Does it bring shot quantity and quality in to account?

    I don’t actually know precisely how it’s calculated either, but it definitely does incorporate shots, scoring chances and HD chances.

    But yes, shot quality and quantity is the difference. In part reflected in McDavid’s league worst PK on ice SV%.

    A couple of goals going in or not can make a big difference in a 100 or 200 minute sample.

  77. pts2pndr says:

    Greenberg:
    First, Tile Guy, RE generally means “in reference to”. On this blog, sometimes we get about four discussions going at once on different subjects. So a writer says, ‘Re: Oilers scoring without McDavid’. That tells the reader what subject is about to be discussed.

    Second, quit talking about ex-Oilers as if they were still magnificent. In the east, Magnus Paajarvi is no longer considered the diamond we thought he was. He is more ineffective and slower than the one we knew. Again, pay attention to what is being said in other markets about players.

    Now my issue with Resolved is probably reflective of my anti-stats prejudice. Unless Tippett has the insight of Jesus, he is not going to be willing to stick to any lines. This is a shitty team and it is not climbing out of the muck in three seconds. You are lucky if you can get one line right. And if you do, the second one is really close to getting off track. Best of luck with lines three and four. McLellan didn’t play switcheroo because he was finicky and a perfectionist. He did it because he was handed a basket of dung and asked to rearrange it. Tippett, in theory, has been handedless dung than last year’s coaches were. At least that is the hope.

    I suspect that line rearranging is a function of crappy talent as opposed to a main determinant into a team’s place in the standings. If you had McDavid, Draisaitl and Hall, and then Nuge with Panarin and Giroux, then maybe there would be fewer changes. Only a suspicion. No science behind it.

    Of course, then you would have Billy Bob Sieve in the nets and it all wouldn’t matter.

    Normally I would not take offence at your post however in this case I will make an exception. All posts are allowed on this site and the moderator of what is acceptable is the per view of our kind host.
    I am lead to believe that the first part of your “handle” is due to the fact that you are new to the site. RE is understood unless followed by topic as reasonable expectation for various players and is provided by our host on a formula based on league last played in, number of games expected etc and provided by our host. His re predictions are quite frankly reasonably accurate given all the uncertainties. I welcome you to the site, as new thinking is welcomed on this site, I would only ask that you accept that all opinions regardless of what any of us think and or believe are welcome so long as they are acceptable to our host and not an attack on person.

  78. pts2pndr says:

    Darth Tu: I’m in agreement on that.In terms of forwards….

    Get Nuge onto PP2 with Gagner and Khaira (net front) plus whoever else can earn a slot.

    PP1 would be McDavid, Drai, Chiasson, Neil.

    The coaching staff will work out which players have chemistry with one another. I am willing to give our new coaching staff the chance to prove themselves. I do believe that what you have proposed definitely has merit.

  79. Jordan says:

    Ryan:
    Jordan,

    Greenberg’s been here for a while. Probably the longest post I’ve seen from them.

    Made a few good points, so I wouldn’t call it trolling.

    I agree that the line blenders are driven by the lack of talented players on the roster.

    pts2pndr,

    That was my take too. However, clearly others here have better memories for posters handles than I do.

    I take back my comments about trolling, and simply acknowledge that there could be better options.

    Hopefully they come from in-house and we can debate who should be on which lines because they’re all lighting it up.

    It’s very hard to cheer for a team that can’t seem to find wins year over year.

    Edit – Forgot to say thanks Ryan. so… Thanks Ryan!

  80. pts2pndr says:

    Revolved:
    FRJohnK,
    Andy Dufresne,
    HT JOE,

    Thanks guys. I have not looked league wide, but I did find it interesting to look at the teams who moved around in the rankings. Some had injuries, some not. The Oilers had very unstable lines and it was not due to injury. I think it is primarily a coaching decision driven by results (thus good teams have stable lines) and circumstances like injuries.

    This question for me is the age old chicken or egg thing. How long should it take for a line to form a chemistry? What I do know from experience is that in many cases you can put a group of players/people together that are either better or worse than the some of their parts. People are not plug and play. Chemistry or talent/personalty mesh is real. This is to me what separates the good coaches/leaders from those considered great.

  81. Reja says:

    Darth Tu: I’m in agreement on that.In terms of forwards….

    Get Nuge onto PP2 with Gagner and Khaira (net front) plus whoever else can earn a slot.

    PP1 would be McDavid, Drai, Chiasson, Neil.

    And Bouchard on PP1 on PP 2 Nuge and Gagner running the show. I Believe we have the makings of a top 3-5 PP in the league couple in with a more determined know your role feel like your part of the team bottom 6 PKers and no way we miss the playoffs.

  82. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp:
    I used xGA rather than GA above because the sample sizes are so small. Here are the actual GA/60 which gives a bit of a different view, and also illustrates how big a gap there can be between the two numbers. (as above, this is rank among the 199 forwards with 100 minutes PK TOI over the past 2 seasons)

    Archibald 4.92 (17th)
    Khaira 5.92 (36th)
    Kassian 8.36 (157th)
    McDavid 8.61 (165th)
    Draisaitl 8.61 (166th)
    Granlund 8.69 (170th)
    Brodziak 8.98 (174th)
    Nuge 10.72 (197th)

    I think the xGA is more accurate given the sample size. And I think Archibald and Khaira being elite penalty killers is a bit of a mirage (though both are above average by xGA too). Nuge does seem to be really very bad.

    PK on ice save percentage: Nuge 190th, Draisaitl 194th, McDavid 199th of 199.

    Are those numbers right? McDavid was 11.21 GA/60 at 4 on 5 last year.

    Maybe those numbers are not just last year?

    EDIT: Sorry, read better OP – last two years.

    Its interesting that McDavid’s GA/60 were so much worse this past season – sample size likely a big factor.

  83. OriginalPouzar says:

    Revolved,

    Thank you.

  84. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp,

    Thanks (and for the research you do and provide).

  85. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: And Bouchard on PP1 on PP 2 Nuge and Gagner running the show. I Believe we have the makings of a top 3-5 PP in the league couple in with a more determined know your role feel like your part of the team bottom 6 PKers and no way we miss the playoffs.

    In time it will be Bouchard, reasonably likely at some point this season.

    In October, its more likely to be Persson and it very well could excellent (the bigger question for me re: Persson is if he’s able to handle 3rd pairing 5 on 5).

  86. Munny says:

    Revolved,

    Thank you, sir.

  87. pts2pndr says:

    To the group. Many coaches apparently are setting lines using a pairs system. I understand and appreciate the concept. The two in these groups as I see it shall in so far as possible stay the same with the third member interchangeable. This would fit with my experience that in small teams it is critical to have a core. In the case of the pairings as in lines I would argue that a hockey line requires three players with chemistry. Is my understanding of the pairs system correct in that the two are critical and the third player not necessarily interchangeable but acceptable.

  88. Munny says:

    pts2pndr,

    He’s been around for quite some time, posts rarely, but some times in bursts… and has always been anti-stats. Which is of course bizarre. Who prefers less information, not more, and less objectivity, not more? But to each their own.

  89. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar: In time it will be Bouchard, reasonably likely at some point this season.

    In October, its more likely to be Persson and it very well could excellent (the bigger question for me re: Persson is if he’s able to handle 3rd pairing 5 on 5).

    Could be sooner than you think. I’m still sticking to JP plus a D on the roster or a D prospect for a serviceable player before the season starts.

  90. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Munny,

    I’ve always found the “anti-stats” stance bizarre. My two favourite stats are goals and wins.

    One can choose to view stats as simple or complex as one is personally inclined. But everyone cares about stats to some degree, and to claim otherwise is (IMO) overlooking the basics.

  91. treevojo says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Do we all agree that Nuge should be running the second power play unit and that it doesn’t make sense to have him on PP1 along with two other puck distributors like McDavid and Drai (although Drai plays more of a shooter role on the PP)?

    Do you think Nuge would be happy with the scraps left over from Mcdavid and Drai on pp1.

    Thought I heard Tippett say he plans on upping their pp mins.

    That might leave Nuge 30sec on average if he is lucky.

    I know if I was the 3rd best player on the team that would chap my ass.

  92. GMB3 says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    Munny,

    I’ve always found the “anti-stats” stance bizarre.My two favourite stats are goals and wins.

    One can choose to view stats as simple or complex as one is personally inclined.But everyone cares about stats to some degree, and to claim otherwise is (IMO) overlooking the basics.

    I hear so many people hate on corsi, arguing it has no value. but then proclaim “wow Edmonton is getting outshot by 20, they are sure getting outplayed”.

  93. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: Could be sooner than you think. I’m still sticking to JP plus a D on the roster or a D prospect for a serviceable player before the season starts.

    It could be but it would be unlikely, in my opinion. It goes against the verbal from the GM (expressly and specifically listing Bouchard as an example of a prospect that should be given AHL time and not rushed to the NHL), and it would somewhat disregard the two plus years of pro of four prospects where arguments can be made the player may be NHL ready, a few of which have similar skill-sets.

    Even the removal of one of the d-men above wouldn’t really change this.

    Holland is cleary looking beyond this season with the primary goal of building a champion and I think he’s going to be risk adverse with his most important prospect.

  94. GMB3 says:

    jp:
    Re: Gagner’s role this coming season. Since he left the Oilers in 2014 he’s played for Arizona, Philadelphia, Columbus, Vancouver and the Oilers again (also some AHL time in there).

    He’s jumped around a ton and clearly has significant warts to his game. Through all that he managed to score at a rate of 82-15-24-39. I was really surprised it was that much – he still has skill.

    His previous scoring rates guarantee nothing obviously, but I do think he could really surprise this year if he does find a spot in the top 6. 17 goals and 45 points? We’ll see, but Gagner seems to me every bit as good candidate for those minutes as Chiasson or the other available options.

    I tweeted about this a while back. Imperfect player, but a much higher pedigree as a scorer than any forward but the big 3 (and Neal I suppose)

  95. pts2pndr says:

    Jordan: I’m more than a little surprised you bothered to post anything at all here.

    You aren’t a stats guy, and you’re posting a hockey stats blog.

    You’re take on the Oilers demonstrates a lot of bitterness about the team, and the quality of players currently on the roster.You don’t have any confidence in the goalies, and your suggestion about building a good team outlines players who might make up the top two lines of an all-star team.

    And on the blog, RE in terms of Lowetide’s blog posts does refer to reasonable expectations – has for more than a decade.

    If you’re new here, welcome to the community.If you’re not, please don’t troll?

    McLellan played switcharoo with the Sharks. Got him a ticket out of town.

  96. OriginalPouzar says:

    treevojo: Do you think Nuge would be happy with the scraps left over from Mcdavid and Drai on pp1.

    Thought I heard Tippett say he plans on upping their pp mins.

    That might leave Nuge 30sec on average if he is lucky.

    I know if I was the 3rd best player on the team that would chap my ass.

    I’m not concerned about Nuge’s feelings – I’m concerned about winning hockey games.

    Yes, winning hockey games would be a positive factor in his willingness to re-sign.

  97. pts2pndr says:

    Munny:
    pts2pndr,

    He’s been around for quite some time, posts rarely, but some times in bursts… and has always been anti-stats.Which is of course bizarre. Who prefers less information, not more, and less objectivity, not more? But to each their own.

    Thanks

  98. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: Are those numbers right?McDavid was 11.21 GA/60 at 4 on 5 last year.

    Maybe those numbers are not just last year?

    EDIT: Sorry, read better OP – last two years.

    Its interesting that McDavid’s GA/60 were so much worse this past season – sample size likely a big factor.

    I was using total PK minutes, but yeah, huge swings year to year.

    McDavid 17-18
    90 min
    41.3 SA/60 (2nd of 9 Oilers >45 min)
    51.9 SCA/60 (6th of 9)
    6.7 GA/60 (4th of 9)
    6.47 xGA/60 (2nd of 9)

    McDavid 18-19
    49 min
    42.7 SA/60 (1st of 7 Oilers)
    36.6 SCA/60 (1st of 7)
    12.2 GA/60 (7th of 7)
    5.17 xGA/60 (1st of 7)

    The xGA seems way more consistent than actual GA

  99. pts2pndr says:

    BornInAGretzkyJersey:
    Munny,

    I’ve always found the “anti-stats” stance bizarre.My two favourite stats are goals and wins.

    One can choose to view stats as simple or complex as one is personally inclined.But everyone cares about stats to some degree, and to claim otherwise is (IMO) overlooking the basics.

    Stats and numbers are part of the overall info available. To ignore this is in my opinion folly as in the Ostrich syndrome. To use only numbers is the 180 and also wrong. They both have value and to exclude either is very shortsighted. How to weight both appropriately is the question. This is where experience, interviewing etc fill in the picture.

  100. GMB3 says:

    Despite this looking like another season of despair, there are really some great storylines to look forward to this season.

    After excellent rookie campaigns in the AHL, both Marody and Benson will be pushing for NHL time all year. It will be very interesting to follow their progress. If the repeat the success of last season, both will be looking like bonafide options for the big club come December (if neither of them break the team out of camp).

    Benson was viewed as a guy who could of been a top ten pick after his first season in the dub, he has a lot of talent, but lost a lot of key development time during his junior career. By all accounts, he has a great hockey iq and work ethic, and I think those are the two things vital to overcoming slow boots in the NHL.

    Jones, Lagesson, Bear, and Persson have all shown a ton of growth at the pro level. I’m looking forward to seeing who shakes out as the most impactful player out of the bunch, and I hope Edmonton keeps the right guy(s).

    Samorukov and Bouchard are coming off great years in junior and dominant playoff performances. They could end up being an exciting pairing to watch in the AHL.

    After McLeod and Maksimovs rookie AHL seasons we should have a better idea of where they stand as prospects

  101. pts2pndr says:

    OriginalPouzar: I’m not concerned about Nuge’s feelings – I’m concerned about winning hockey games.

    Yes, winning hockey games would be a positive factor in his willingness to re-sign.

    This Would not make you a good coach. How would you feel and or react if someone told you F U I don’t care what you think. You better be a great poker player if you use that approach. A hockey player is first and foremost a person and deserving of respect. Treat him that way and like most people you would be amazed at the results.

  102. Reja says:

    treevojo: Do you think Nuge would be happy with the scraps left over from Mcdavid and Drai on pp1.

    Thought I heard Tippett say he plans on upping their pp mins.

    That might leave Nuge 30sec on average if he is lucky.

    I know if I was the 3rd best player on the team that would chap my ass.

    If the penalty is drawn by the Mcdavid line then probably Nuge’s gang gets first crack. With Leon and Neal as shooters and a D man Bouchard or Persson that can straddle the line think fast and not fumble and bumble the puck so the PKers get set. No surprise for me if it’s a top 3-5 Powerplay which translates into playoffs which Nuge referred to in his exit interview.

  103. Scungilli Slushy says:

    From what I’ve read the blender is about getting players to play the system. If you’re line mates constantly change theoretically the players have to play the system because they don’t know tendencies.

    A few of you here have commented that you do or have been turnaround specialists, fixing bad situations etc. Perhaps those of you would agree that the skill set is very different than managing a functional environment.

    McLellan is a ‘good’ coach, as is Hitch. I have no reason to think that they had the right skill sets for the Oilers. I think that after trying reasonable measures such as spending extra time with Jesse ( which I don’t think is really any extraordinary thing for a coach to do especially with a 4 OV pick on a train wreck of a team) Todd got frustrated and was out of answers.

    Having the moxy to coach at that level is different than being exceptionally skilled, as I feel Trotz is having turned two teams around in consecutive seasons winning a Cup, Nashville’s issues being the GMs failings IMO.

    To me Tippet is more from the Trotz tree than the Babcock McLellan tree. Less grumpy perhaps.

    I also am of the opinion that the Oilers ‘don’t ‘ lack talent as much as the chaos of the team
    repeatedly torpedoes players. We’ve seen far too many, such as Reider.

    As simple as it is, Holland talking about stability and being able to model it day in and out will make a big difference. If he is cagey he can add a few key but lesser pieces and have a juggernaut. But at the least I believe he will make a perennial contender, and that’s something, especially for us.

    Stability will show on a better culture we see by how the players seem and how they stay mentally in the season win or lose. No more of 50% of the team checking out after some duress.

    Or excuses. The bad apple spoils the barrel, Connor saw that and called it. All in or all out.

    Perfect. I expect a much more fun season and better results simply from less histrionics and own foot shooting.

  104. pts2pndr says:

    Jordan
    Sorry I offended. McLelland played the switcharoo with the Sharks. Got him fired.

  105. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar: It could be but it would be unlikely, in my opinion.It goes against the verbal from the GM (expressly and specifically listing Bouchard as an example of a prospect that should be given AHL time and not rushed to the NHL), and it would somewhat disregard the two plus years of pro of four prospects where arguments can be made the player may be NHL ready, a few of which have similar skill-sets.

    Even the removal of one of the d-men above wouldn’t really change this.

    Holland is cleary looking beyond this season with the primary goal of building a champion and I think he’s going to be risk adverse with his most important prospect.

    If Bouchard knocks it out of the park I believe Tippett has him running the D on PP1 to start the year. Bouchard reminds me of a better version of Keith Yandle who played for Tippett a point producing machine on the PP. Top 3-5 PP top 12-15 PK no first shot curse Talbot = playoffs.

  106. Reja says:

    Reja: If Bouchard knocks it out of the park I believe Tippett has him running the D on PP1 to start the year. Bouchard reminds me of a better version of Keith Yandle who played for Tippett a point producing machine on the PP. Top 3-5 PP top 12-15 PK no first shot curse Talbot = playoffs.

    I also thought Schultz would be a crackerjack on the PP he had that sneaky wrist shot same as Bouchard but what I’ve seen of Bouchard he gets it of faster and it’s quicker makes it to net where a lot of Schultz shots were blocked and cleared out which killed the PP.

  107. Ryan says:

    Reja: I also thought Schultz would be a crackerjack on the PP he had that sneaky wrist shot same as Bouchard but what I’ve seen of Bouchard he gets it of faster and it’s quicker makes it to net where a lot of Schultz shots were blocked and cleared out which killed the PP.

    Schultz was a paradoxical player.

    He could skate the puck up the ice somewhat like Nurse, pass well in the offensive zone…

    But he couldn’t make a first pass to save his life.

    Bouchard looks surprisingly like Schultz in terms of physical appearance.

    Bouchard can make a first pass.

  108. ArmchairGM says:

    russ99: but my money is on someone like Archibald, who already plays an NHL average game and has the trust of the coach

    If he had an “NHL average” game he would have been qualified by Arizona. He wasn’t.

    His qualifying amount was just over league minimum and they chose to let him walk. Telling, IMO.

  109. treevojo says:

    OriginalPouzar: I’m not concerned about Nuge’s feelings – I’m concerned about winning hockey games.

    Yes, winning hockey games would be a positive factor in his willingness to re-sign.

    Ok

    To answer your question.

    No we are all not in agreement

  110. OriginalPouzar says:

    GMB:
    Despite this looking like another season of despair, there are really some great storylines to look forward to this season.

    After excellent rookie campaigns in the AHL, both Marody and Benson will be pushing for NHL time all year. It will be very interesting to follow their progress. If the repeat the success of last season, both will be looking like bonafide options for the big club come December (if neither of them break the team out of camp).

    Benson was viewed as a guy who could of been a top ten pick after his first season in the dub, he has a lot of talent, but lost a lot of key development time during his junior career. By all accounts, he has a great hockey iq and work ethic, and I think those are the two things vital to overcoming slow boots in the NHL.

    Jones, Lagesson, Bear, and Persson have all shown a ton of growth at the pro level. I’m looking forward to seeing who shakes out as the most impactful player out of the bunch, and I hope Edmonton keeps the right guy(s).

    Samorukov and Bouchard are coming off great years in junior and dominant playoff performances. They could end up being an exciting pairing to watch in the AHL.

    After McLeod and Maksimovs rookie AHL seasons we should have a better idea of where they stand as prospects

    There are reasons to tune in each and every night for me – even if the season goes off the rails – not even the chance that McDavid will do something “McDavid-like” but watching all these youngsters play and grow (whoever is in the lineup), struggle and learn, etc. To watch how Nurse plays in his contract year and how he may look with a different partner. To watch a guy like Kahira develop in to a center or a middle winger or whatever the case may be.

    Can’t wait for October 2 – shit, I can’t wait for the first rookie game against the flames.

  111. Jaxon says:

    Samorukov and Maksimov are the two Russian/Canadian wildcards for me. They’re both big, physical players who had dominant seasons and both have been reported as being defensively sound players. Both are quite physical and aggressive. Samurokov skating is top notch and Maksimov’s has reportedly improved a lot. I’m really looking forward to seeing how they fare in training camp and exhibition games. I think they might surprise and at least challenge for a roster spot. They already have the important tools that many prospects need to develop to make the show.

  112. OriginalPouzar says:

    ptspndr: This Would not make you a good coach. How would you feel and or react if someone told you F UI don’t care what you think. You better be a great poker player if you use that approach. A hockey player is first and foremost a person and deserving of respect. Treat him that way and like most people you would be amazed at the results.

    Having PP2 run through Nuge is in no way disrespecting the player and i doubt Nuge would feel disrespected and, if he does, well, if the deployment helps the team win games I would suggest that is not bad coaching.

  113. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: If Bouchard knocks it out of the park I believe Tippett has him running the D on PP1 to start the year. Bouchard reminds me of a better version of Keith Yandle who played for Tippett a point producing machine on the PP. Top 3-5 PP top 12-15 PK no first shot curse Talbot = playoffs.

    I fully expect him to knock it out of the park in exhibition – I have little doubt he will.

    I fully expect him to be assigned to the Bakersfield Condors notwithstanding such park knocking.

    I would be very surprised if Bouchard was an Oiler for game 1.

    We’ll find out in less than two months.

  114. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: I also thought Schultz would be a crackerjack on the PP he had that sneaky wrist shot same as Bouchard but what I’ve seen of Bouchard he gets it of faster and it’s quicker makes it to net where a lot of Schultz shots were blocked and cleared out which killed the PP.

    Bouchard’s ability to get his shot through is phenomenal and way superior to what Shultz was able to do. Shultz scored on a wrist shot once and the verbal took off.

  115. GMB3 says:

    OriginalPouzar: There are reasons to tune in each and every night for me – even if the season goes off the rails – not even the chance that McDavid will do something “McDavid-like” but watching all these youngsters play and grow (whoever is in the lineup), struggle and learn, etc.To watch how Nurse plays in his contract year and how he may look with a different partner. To watch a guy like Kahira develop in to a center or a middle winger or whatever the case may be.

    Can’t wait for October 2 – shit, I can’t wait for the first rookie game against the flames.

    Me too OP, me too.

    Ive been recording and watching most of the u20 and u18 games this summer, lots of exciting prospects to follow. Nice to have some sort of hockey fix in August.

    There’s some really nice forward talent at the top of this year’s draft, and Brad Lambert is phenomenal at age 15 in the U18’s. Will push for #1 with local St. Albert kid Savoie and Shane Wright in 2022.

    Perfetti, Byfield, and Lapierre are looking incredible for the Canadians too. This draft will be stacked with good forwards.

  116. pts2pndr says:

    ArmchairGM: If he had an “NHL average” game he would have been qualified by Arizona. He wasn’t.

    His qualifying amount was just over league minimum and they chose to let him walk. Telling, IMO.

    One mans trash is another mans gold.

  117. Victoria Oil says:

    Revolved,

    If available, I’d be curious to also see the correlation of injuries (man games lost) to line stability (and to winning).

  118. Ryan says:

    pts2pndr: One mans trash is another mans gold.

    For the lazy man’s advanced stats, there’s the Corsica player ratings.

    Archibald has a rating of 71.2

    That’s ahead of

    – Chiasson
    – Kassian
    – Khaira
    – Puljujarvi
    – tied with Granlund

    https://www.dailyfaceoff.com/teams/edmonton-oilers/line-combinations/

  119. OriginalPouzar says:

    GMB: Me too OP, me too.

    Ive been recording and watching most of the u20 and u18 games this summer, lots of exciting prospects to follow. Nice to have some sort of hockey fix in August.

    There’s some really nice forward talent at the top of this year’s draft, and Brad Lambert is phenomenal at age 15 in the U18’s. Will push for #1 with local St. Albert kid Savoie and Shane Wright in 2022.

    Perfetti, Byfield, and Lapierre are looking incredible for the Canadians too. This draft will be stacked with good forwards.

    You certainly are not wrong.

    I some some ridiculous skill from Perfetti and Larierre already in the Hilinka.

  120. Ryan says:

    Ryan,

    I would be remiss if I did not reference the Tutoros in honor of Lead farmer, former lowetide poster.

    I miss Lead farmer as he was quite a sensible and insightful poster.

    Too bad Ricki called him an idiot and he hung up his login account.

    The Tutoros don’t look good for Archibald or Granlund.

    In fact, they look terrible. Not NHL caliber players by those metrics.

    https://public.tableau.com/profile/christopher.turtoro#!/vizhome/2-yearA3ZPlayerComps/ComparisonDashboard

  121. SkatinginSand says:

    ArmchairGM: If he had an “NHL average” game he would have been qualified by Arizona. He wasn’t.

    His qualifying amount was just over league minimum and they chose to let him walk. Telling, IMO.

    Sam had 8 years of NHL experience, therefore he was a UFA and not eligible for a qualifying offer.

  122. Reja says:

    ArmchairGM: If he had an “NHL average” game he would have been qualified by Arizona. He wasn’t.

    His qualifying amount was just over league minimum and they chose to let him walk. Telling, IMO.

    Nobody wanted chaiss last year and he scored 22 Mrs Debbie Downer.There’s a whole whack of
    25-29 fringe players that are cheap can PK and score15-20 they’re out there why not Archibald

  123. Ryan says:

    Ryan,

    In fairness, any bottom six player on a bad team will have crappy turtoros.

  124. jp says:

    GMB3: I tweeted about this a while back. Imperfect player, but a much higher pedigree as a scorer than any forward but the big 3 (and Neal I suppose)

    Yup. He has skill. The Oilers need skill. It could be cool.

  125. OriginalPouzar says:

    SkatinginSand: Sam had 8 years of NHL experience, therefore he was a UFA and not eligible for a qualifying offer.

    I think that was in reference to Archibald.

  126. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: Having PP2 run through Nuge is in no way disrespecting the player and i doubt Nuge would feel disrespected and, if he does, well, if the deployment helps the team win games I would suggest that is not bad coaching.

    I agree, wins are what matters and team success is likely the best motivator for RNH resigning.

    What I’m concerned about is the PP2 gets way less TOI than PP1. Nuge anchoring PP2 is great in theory, but if he’s getting 1 minute a game it’s pointless. And that’s likely in range with reality it seems.

    Oilers forwards PP TOI/game (all types) last year, >20 total minutes:
    McDavid 3:25
    Draisaitl 3:20
    Nuge 3:14
    Chiasson 2:37
    Strome 1:30 (18 games)
    Lucic 1:20
    Gagner 0:54 (25 games)
    Rattie 0:53
    Caggiula 0:44 (29 games)
    Puljujarvi 0:26 (46 games)
    Khaira 0:23
    Rieder 0:22

    Lucic and Chiasson split PP1 time, and Strome played less than a quarter of the season. So the Oilers actual PP2 got less than a minute a game. That would need to change before Nuge gets moved off the top unit IMO.

  127. OriginalPouzar says:

    Well, of course PP1 gets more time than PP2 and that’s OK if Nuge’s PP time is less than that of McDavid and Drai. Nuge is going to play on the PK much more than Leon and Drai and take a regular top 6 5 on 5 shift. He should play less on the PP.

    Not to mention, there are a few ways to “skin the cat” – PP1 can change earlier but PP2 does not have to be a full new 5-man unitl – McDavid and/or Drai can stay on the ice for part of PP2 as well in a different set.

  128. jeetz says:

    Revolved:
    Greenberg,
    JIMMYV1965,

    I agree, I would be surprised if Tippett increased line stability drastically. However, that doesn’t mean he couldn’t or shouldn’t. There are a lot of players who have no business playing with stars, and yet when they get the chance sometimes they become stars too – even if only for a season.

    For instance, I think that Khaira could be a great LW for McDavid. Given how much it would help the team and allow their minutes to be reduced, I think having Draisaitl on the second line would be worth it. I know I am in the minority, but I will be very disappointed if Tippett starts with Draisaitl – McDavid – Kassian. It would show a complete lack of imagination and the team did not win that way last season, so why continue with it?

    I think keeping Kassian McD Draisaitl is the right thing to do. No need to change the scoring domination of the first line. Tippett’s #1 priority among the FWDs should be to increase GF and decrease GA with the bottom 9 without tampering with the top line. THAT makes the Oilers stronger. I would suggest that is Holland’s plan by the way he flooded the bottom 9 with potential players. It is up to Tippett to find the right 9 without compromising the development of our hopeful prospects.

    I do not envy him one bit

  129. Revolved says:

    pts2pndr,

    I agree that it is a rare talent to be able to see when players mesh, and then develop that relationship. However, in a salary cap league it might be the most valuable talent for a coach, as it allows those that can do it to get much more value out of players that are not elite.

  130. Revolved says:

    Scungilli Slushy,

    If coaches are blending lines in order to force their players to act like robots, that is a despicable management strategy. I really hope that Tippett is more concerned with chemistry and getting groups to play the system together.

  131. Revolved says:

    jeetz,

    Draisaitl – McDavid – Kassian had a 49.5% SF, and 54.8% GF. Given the talent there, I would call that disappointing as opposed to dominant. Draisaitl – McDavid were 57.6% GF without Kassian, so even if Tippett insists on running the big guns together, and it will probably be for 25 minutes a night again, I don’t think Kassian is the best right wing.

  132. ArmchairGM says:

    SkatinginSand: Sam had 8 years of NHL experience, therefore he was a UFA and not eligible for a qualifying offer.

    Sam who? We’re talking about Josh.

  133. Lowetide says:

    New for The Athletic: Examining the potential waiver-wire opportunities at hand for the Oilers

    https://theathletic.com/1118770/2019/08/07/examining-the-potential-waiver-wire-opportunities-at-hand-for-the-oilers/

  134. GMB3 says:

    Revolved:
    jeetz,

    Draisaitl – McDavid – Kassian had a 49.5% SF, and 54.8% GF. Given the talent there, I would call that disappointing as opposed to dominant. Draisaitl – McDavid were 57.6% GF without Kassian, so even if Tippett insists on running the big guns together, and it will probably be for 25 minutes a night again, I don’t think Kassian is the best right wing.

    I think McD and Drai both took a pretty big hit to the GF% with Hitchcock as coach. May be wrong, but I thought I found that looking deeper into the numbers

  135. Revolved says:

    GMB3,

    If there’s a place to get WOWY data split in season, please let me know. I’d also like to look at how stable the lines were before vs after the coaching change.

  136. GMB3 says:

    Revolved:
    GMB3,

    If there’s a place to get WOWY data split in season, please let me know. I’d also like to look at how stable the lines were before vs after the coaching change.

    You can play around with it by date on natural stat trick, but it’s a bit of a bear. I’m on mobile at work sans wifi so I’m unable to look into it at the moment

  137. jeetz says:

    Revolved,

    I agree that Kassian may not be the right guy though I am sure (barring a disappointing training camp) he will get first try. I was actually referring to keeping McD and Draisaitl together while Tippett solves the bottom 9. Also I am hoping they cut McD and Draisaitl ice time by 3-5 min per game. Overplaying them night after night is asking for a fatigue injury.

    I’ll add that Neal changes the equation. We will likely see McD/ Draisaitl plus RNH/Neal to start but if Neal starts strong we could see McD/Neal and Draisaitl/RNH which would go a long way to solving our ‘1 line team’ problem and even out the playing time as well.

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