Making Bets

by Lowetide

For the Oilers, this season will be a lot about making bets. Bets on Joel Persson, Gaetan Haas, Joakim Nygard. Bets on Caleb Jones, Tyler Benson, Cooper Marody. As fans, we fight and argue and argue and fight about specific prospects, and they usually get their 400 at-bats so we can claim victory (or hope everyone forgets about what we said).

We do forget a lot, don’t we? As the current crop of goalies, defensemen and forwards push up from the underground, we forget the long list of names that were lost in the flood. It’s damned hard to deliver a 100-game NHL career, let alone a productive one. Let’s look through recent back pages to see just how hopeless things can get. Here are the Oilers forwards and their scoring numbers at five-on-five since McDavid arrived.

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: Projecting the Oilers 2019-20 Opening Night Lineup
  • Lowetide: Revisiting the Oilers’ 2016 draft and the opportunities missed
  • Lowetide: Examining the potential waiver-wire opportunities at hand for the Oilers
  • 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.

OILERS FORWARDS SINCE 2015 (MINUTES AND 5-ON-5 PER 60)

These are the 10 most productive Oilers forwards at five-on-five scoring since 2015 fall (200 or more minutes). McDavid, Draisaitl, Hall, Eberle, Maroon, most of the list is predictable.

Surprises? Tyler Pitlick was productive, he was impressive in the playoff season (until injured). Pontus Aberg is another complementary forward who had some traction in a small sample. Perhaps the organization would have been wise to give him more at-bats.

The top 10 is mostly veterans, placeholders like Cammalleri, Purcell and (frankly) Gagner. You would like to see some of the kids high on this list. Let’s look at 11-20.

Nuge heads up the second group, his range of skills and usage (he plays elite competition a lot) give him a value boost. Pouliot was an underrated forward who ended up on the wrong side of the coach, and that was maybe a little true for Rattie as well. Huh. Lots of that on this list.

We see now the beginning of the young group (Yakupov, Khaira, Slepyshev) who Edmonton needed to have more offense. Khaira’s numbers are about the same as Strome’s, an interesting curio. A lot of time was invested in Slepyshev, 1100 minutes and he played with some fine skill forwards. Kassian, Lucic and Chiasson are all enforcer types who scored in the same range during the piece.

Caggiula was a disappointment offensively, which is different than saying he should have been traded to Chicago. He and Slepyshev can never complain they didn’t get their 500 at-bats.

Puljujarvi and Yamamoto were just kids during this time and in JP’s case there were encouraging signs.

Making Bets

We can say that the only bets among forwards who paid off 2015-19 were Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, who were selected No. 1 and No. 3 in their draft years.

Failures? Yakupov, Slepyshev, Caggiula, Puljujarvi and Yamamoto. I don’t think the failure is all on the player but the results simply weren’t there. I do believe JP and KY still have a chance.

Are Benson, Marody and the next group better bets?

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

We’re back, baby!! At 10 this morning, TSN1260. Expect something special!

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OriginalPouzar

ArmchairGM: Acquiring good players doesn’t help towards building a Stanley Cup contender?? I don’t see how this could possibly be true. If a better player becomes available next summer and we can’t afford him it’s not going to be because we gave a 25 goal scorer $3.5M. And even if Connolly IS standing in the way of acquiring a better player, he’s an easily tradeable asset.

Get good players, keep good players. And if you can get them for zero asset cost in UFA at a decent price, that’s gold. You don’t let mythical, possible future ‘maybe’ deals get in the way of that.

Lets hold off on calling Connolly a 25G scorer – he’s never scored 25 and only scored more than 15 once and he’s never had 50 points.

Yes, he would have helped this year but he would likely not have moved the needle in the top 6 and he very well could have helped to preclude a more substantial acquisition in future years. Holland is clearly trying to acquire as much cap space as he can for the next few years so that he can be involved when substantial acquisitions are available and so he has the room to take advantage of cap strapped teams in future years.

Committing to a marginal top 6 forward does not jive with keeping options open and signing a player with the thought that he’s tradeable if we need the money we commit is not good business.

ArmchairGM

JimmyV1965: He’s averaged 58 pts per 82 games over his career. What’s the issue?

That’s not worth $8M.

JimmyV1965

ArmchairGM: We are discussing P/60 over multiple years though. In fact, he’s never hit 2.00 P/60 in his career, despite playing with some very good offensive talents in Eberle and Hall.

He’s averaged 58 pts per 82 games over his career. What’s the issue?

jp

ArmchairGM: True, but he’s also played with some talented players in his career and hasn’t produced at a high level with any of them. Here’s his P/60 at 5v5 and career TOI:

McDavid: 2.30 (598:04)
Draisaitl: 1.93 (372:46)
Eberle: 1.78 (3803:50)
Hall: 1.58 (2275:31)
Petry: 1.51 (872:07)
Klefbom: 1.42 (1643:25)

I think we can stop worrying about an $8M contract, folks.

He’s also scored (over the past 3 seasons):
2.03 with Nurse
1.97 with Benning
1.99 with Lucic
2.11 with Puljujarvi
2.39 with Caggiula
2.62 with Gryba

All >200 min. It’s almost as if he gets no benefit from playing with top skill. Maybe he’s perfect for the role he’s being played in.

But yeah, not $8M, unless he scores 70 a time or two.

jp

ArmchairGM: Acquiring good players doesn’t help towards building a Stanley Cup contender?? I don’t see how this could possibly be true. If a better player becomes available next summer and we can’t afford him it’s not going to be because we gave a 25 goal scorer $3.5M. And even if Connolly IS standing in the way of acquiring a better player, he’s an easily tradeable asset.

Get good players, keep good players. And if you can get them for zero asset cost in UFA at a decent price, that’s gold. You don’t let mythical, possible future ‘maybe’ deals get in the way of that.

When discussing mythical possible future events I think it’s fair to note that Connolly as never scored 25 goals and Burakovsky has never scored 20.

ArmchairGM

JimmyV1965:
RNH scored 28 goals and 69 pts last year, good for 57th in the league. He did this playing with mostly fourth liners. Why are we focussing in his P/60?

We are discussing P/60 over multiple years though. In fact, he’s never hit 2.00 P/60 in his career, despite playing with some very good offensive talents in Eberle and Hall.

ArmchairGM

OriginalPouzar: There were definitely players available, as you suggest, that would have been more of a “sure thing” to help this year but acquiring them would not jive with his stated primary goal of building a Stanley Cup contender within the next few years.

Acquiring good players doesn’t help towards building a Stanley Cup contender?? I don’t see how this could possibly be true. If a better player becomes available next summer and we can’t afford him it’s not going to be because we gave a 25 goal scorer $3.5M. And even if Connolly IS standing in the way of acquiring a better player, he’s an easily tradeable asset.

Get good players, keep good players. And if you can get them for zero asset cost in UFA at a decent price, that’s gold. You don’t let mythical, possible future ‘maybe’ deals get in the way of that.

ArmchairGM

OriginalPouzar: Definitely stands out as low vis-a-vis the talent level of the player.

I can say that, over the last three years aggregated, his most common linemates, by alot, almost 50% more than number 2, was Lucic.

True, but he’s also played with some talented players in his career and hasn’t produced at a high level with any of them. Here’s his P/60 at 5v5 and career TOI:

McDavid: 2.30 (598:04)
Draisaitl: 1.93 (372:46)
Eberle: 1.78 (3803:50)
Hall: 1.58 (2275:31)
Petry: 1.51 (872:07)
Klefbom: 1.42 (1643:25)

I think we can stop worrying about an $8M contract, folks.

jp

ArmchairGM: They were and I have proved it. But my point was that ANY combination of those players would have constituted roster improvement, but nothing Holland has done (save, potentially, the Lucic-Neal trade) has materially improved the roster for 2019-20. There were opportunities to improve the team this summer and Holland struck out, choosing to sign a bunch of unproven “bets” instead.

Very disappointing.

As you like.

ArmchairGM

OriginalPouzar: We discussed this quite a bit with ArmChair and others during the great Connolly debate and as a concept, P/60 from playing in the bottom 6 often does not translate when tried in the top 6 – more minutes, tougher comp, etc. – of course, better linemates.

I seem to remember some posters (not you, perhaps) also ignoring the actual goals that Connolly had scored too, as if scoring 45 goals over the past 3 years (5v5) wasn’t an indication of ability.

And Woodguy has research indicating that who you play with is a greater factor in individual success than who you play against, so Connolly’s ability to maintain his production while upgrading his center from Lars Eller to one of the Oilers Big 3 wouldn’t have been considered a “bet” IMO.

ArmchairGM

jp: To do that you used the entirety of the 2.4M cap cushion the Oilers currently have, signed Connolly for the same figure he didn’t accept from the Oilers and Pominville for 850k (which the Oilers could still do today or tomorrow or the next day). Your math is technically correct but not realistic IMO.

I do agree the Oilers could theoretically have added one of Connolly, Dzingel or Burakovsky (pending the players willingness to sign in Edmonton). I don’t agree multiple of the improvements you’re suggesting (on players making more than $1M) were possible.

They were and I have proved it. But my point was that ANY combination of those players would have constituted roster improvement, but nothing Holland has done (save, potentially, the Lucic-Neal trade) has materially improved the roster for 2019-20. There were opportunities to improve the team this summer and Holland struck out, choosing to sign a bunch of unproven “bets” instead.

Very disappointing.

ArmchairGM

Bank Shot: RNH has never produced great numbers given the opportunitieshe has been given over the years.

Oilers are in a tough spot on his next contract because they can’t afford to lose him but he probably won’t provide much value to the team at the $8 million per he’ll likely be looking for.

I don’t think there’s any justification for an $8M price tag for a guy that has never posted 2.00 P/60 at 5v5 in his career.

jp

Munny:
jp,

Nuge’s offense is a real concern.The shocker in LT’s post is that he doesn’t make the first tier offensively.

Yet he’s relied on for top 6 offense.

I wish he’d change up his stick.Too many great looks get sprayed high, wide, or both.

Not saying he doesn’t have value.But he’s been a bit short offensively. Especially during the CMD era, with the Command(er) facing the toughs on the road.

Some of that is faceoffs.When he gets an Ozone FO he has to win the puck back, constantly.And when he starts in the DZone, he’s gotta go 200 feet.Sisyphus meet boulder.

Nuge’s offence is somewhat of a concern I guess, but he IS providing top 6 scoring. His 5v5/60 is at #5F levels league wide (last 3 yrs).

His PP offense is top 60 in the NHL so that’s a bump. On the other hand he’s weak on face-offs and is terrible on the PK. His TOI vs elite’s has also been very reasonable the past 2 yrs (behind McDavid and Draisaitl at least).

All said Nuge has been a solid/good 2C. And last year he was top 60 in overall scoring, so if that’s the new normal we can call him a first liner.

I guess it all comes down to salary – he’s currently the #64 paid forward in the NHL. If he scores 70+ a time or two in the next year or two, a bump to $8M likely makes sense, otherwise not so much.

JimmyV1965

RNH scored 28 goals and 69 pts last year, good for 57th in the league. He did this playing with mostly fourth liners. Why are we focussing in his P/60?

Glovjuice

JimmyV1965: We’ve got maybe six good players on this team and you want to trade two of them. What would the return be?

Not making the playoffs this year anyways……..Ehlers and some R shot D that someone smarter than me can suggest.

JimmyV1965

Glovjuice: I suspect that Nuge and Nurse could fetch more than they are worth to the Oil when you factor in their next contract demands and how quickly that is coming over the horizon.

We’ve got maybe six good players on this team and you want to trade two of them. What would the return be?

Glovjuice

The look of terminal shock in your eyes
Now things are really what they seem
No, this is no bad dream, Nuge or Nurse need to be traded
To reap value for this team.

Glovjuice

Just nod if you can hear me.

Glovjuice

Is there anybody out there?

Glovjuice

Reja: Nuge sure had a ton of good looks in the slot on the power-play either his snap shot was deflected, missed the net, post ,cross- bar, easy save, big savewhatever the case he should have buried at least 7-10 moregoals from that juicy spot. Neal will replace Nuge on PP1 and if he gets that shot going lookout nay-sayers I think Tippett will give the keys to Nuge to run the second power play from what I remember he was dangerous on the PP in his first year maybe go back to that formation.

I suspect that Nuge and Nurse could fetch more than they are worth to the Oil when you factor in their next contract demands and how quickly that is coming over the horizon.

Reja

Munny:
jp,

Nuge’s offense is a real concern.The shocker in LT’s post is that he doesn’t make the first tier offensively.

Yet he’s relied on for top 6 offense.

I wish he’d change up his stick.Too many great looks get sprayed high, wide, or both.

Not saying he doesn’t have value.But he’s been a bit short offensively. Especially during the CMD era, with the Command(er) facing the toughs on the road.

Some of that is faceoffs.When he gets an Ozone FO he has to win the puck back, constantly.And when he starts in the DZone, he’s gotta go 200 feet.Sisyphus meet boulder.

Nuge sure had a ton of good looks in the slot on the power-play either his snap shot was deflected, missed the net, post ,cross- bar, easy save, big save whatever the case he should have buried at least 7-10 more goals from that juicy spot. Neal will replace Nuge on PP1 and if he gets that shot going lookout nay-sayers I think Tippett will give the keys to Nuge to run the second power play from what I remember he was dangerous on the PP in his first year maybe go back to that formation.

Reja

jp: I didn’t reply when I read this earlier, but it’s such a key point.

The potential for one or more young player to make an impact this season is the same as it’s been every year. But this time around they’re all blocked unless they really force the issue. And they’re not being counted on to keep the team afloat.

Kids will continue to push through when they’re ready. But Holland is making sure it’ll hurt much less when they don’t.

Benson is going to bust through and be on the opening day lineup and not because he was gifted it but because he did it the old fashioned way he earned it.

Munny

jp,

Nuge’s offense is a real concern. The shocker in LT’s post is that he doesn’t make the first tier offensively.

Yet he’s relied on for top 6 offense.

I wish he’d change up his stick. Too many great looks get sprayed high, wide, or both.

Not saying he doesn’t have value. But he’s been a bit short offensively. Especially during the CMD era, with the Command(er) facing the toughs on the road.

Some of that is faceoffs. When he gets an Ozone FO he has to win the puck back, constantly. And when he starts in the DZone, he’s gotta go 200 feet. Sisyphus meet boulder.

Silver Streak

OriginalPouzar: Replacing a $1M with a $4M when the already isn’t enough cap space to get Tkachuk and Mangiapane under contract seems like a poor GM decision.

When the GM realizes he requires 7 D vs: one extra hard to sign forward, the job becomes substantially easier.

jp

Revolved:
I think that Haas over Marody illustrates how the bets made have changed this year. The first thing Holland did was sign a bunch of mid career plus skaters to fill out the roster. Chiarelli could have done this at any point, but instead started teenagers in the NHL every year. Regardless of production and league, I understand and support Holland bringing in Haas.

I didn’t reply when I read this earlier, but it’s such a key point.

The potential for one or more young player to make an impact this season is the same as it’s been every year. But this time around they’re all blocked unless they really force the issue. And they’re not being counted on to keep the team afloat.

Kids will continue to push through when they’re ready. But Holland is making sure it’ll hurt much less when they don’t.

jp

OriginalPouzar: Definitely stands out as low vis-a-vis the talent level of the player.

I can say that, over the last three years aggregated, his most common linemates, by alot, almost 50% more than number 2, was Lucic.

Good Lord OP.

Surely in the course of finding that information you’d have noticed that Nuge with Lucic scored 1.99P/60 while Nuge overall scored 1.72P/60 (this is last 3 yrs that you used rather than 4 LT posted above).

Lucic had a pretty considerable positive impact on Nuge’s scoring. Heh, maybe Neal will be a huge drag on Nuge compared to Lucic.

Edit: Just looking this up now, but if you can believe it, in 18-19 Nuge with Lucic scored 2.83P/60 (211 min) vs 1.75P/60 overall. Maybe Nuge actually will suffer without Lucic? It doesn’t seem possible, but his numbers with Lucic are better than overall every year…

OriginalPouzar

Of course, market conditions (including vis-a-vis the upper cap limit) two years from now will change, however, 6 X $6M is a contract that I woudl re-sign him to now, if possible (which it isn’t).

I generally don’t like paying aging players for their 30s but that term would end before he’s 35 and I don’t anticipate a ton of regression in Nuge’s game in his early 30s – $6M should be a value contract for much of the term given where salaries are going.

As the cap rises and the team’s cap situation becomes better, there will be help in the top 6 and top 9 and Nuge will be a better offensive player for it – just taking some less elite comp minutes, lets top PK unit minutes, etc. will help.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Yeti,

6×6.

Yeti

Scungilli Slushy: Nuge at the right price is the type of player that are core to championship teams.

What would be the right price and length for his next contract?

treevojo

OriginalPouzar: Replacing a $1M with a $4M when the already isn’t enough cap space to get Tkachuk and Mangiapane under contract seems like a poor GM decision.

Trading Neal for Lucic seems like a poor gming decision as well.

Let’s hope he is on a roll.

HT Joe

OriginalPouzar: Definitely stands out as low vis-a-vis the talent level of the player.
I can say that, over the last three years aggregated, his most common linemates, by alot, almost 50% more than number 2, was Lucic.

So, Lucic was signed long term so that he could suppress RNH’s scoring rates, thereby letting the Oilers re-sign him to a sweetheart deal. Oh that Chia… sly like a fox!! 😉

Scungilli Slushy

OriginalPouzar: I believe that Cooper should definitely be in the conversation with the other two but Tippett keeps mentioning Haas and Khaira as options and I think its clear they’ll get long looks.

Hopefully Marody gets some legit time with legit NHL players during camp and exhibition.

If he continually is linked to the likes of Currie or P. Russell and Brodziak (just for examples), he’ll have zero real chance to win that job.

He deserves the opportunity to play with some legit skill, even just the Granlund, Khaira, Gagner level, to see what he can do.

He is a skilled player and has produced at each level when played with skill – college then the AHL.

Maybe he can check off the next box, NHL, if given a legit chance.

In any top level of sport there isn’t a shortage of skill, there is a shortage of players that can put it all together in a way that benefits the team. It’s a business, it has to be that way.

I hope Cooper tears the cover off. Reality is he checks off more tweener boxes than NHL, especially as the league is.

Firstly because of his success in the A as a rookie, he has to be given his shot, he’s earned that. Earning is good. Rewarding earning is better.

It still remains he has the perfect storm of attributes that he has to overcome, very similar to Gagner.

He’s not tall, not physical, doesn’t have a plus shot, and especially is not a plus skater which to me seems essential if you are a skill player lacking size.

He doesn’t have a stand out skill other than being a really good hockey player. No shortage of those. Just a shortage of those that can do enough to make the league.

OriginalPouzar

SilverStreak:
Flames LD J Valimaki has torn MCL while training…..this is a huge loss for them…he is on his entry level contract at under $900,000. Flames were counting on him playing 2 LD and munching big minutes ….Treliving is on the phones looking for an experience LD…..

THIS is our Russell – out moment. A pick, or Bennettincluded in the deal if expanded might make sense.

As LT says…We Wait

Replacing a $1M with a $4M when the already isn’t enough cap space to get Tkachuk and Mangiapane under contract seems like a poor GM decision.

OriginalPouzar

jtblack: +1.I said at draft time, Tyler Johnson was a good progression to track. Draft +5 he made NHL full time. KY still has time.Doesn’t gurantee he will make it, but most ppl certainly didn’t expect him to be in the NHL sooner.

I truly believe the unreasonable expectations on timeline of development were created by him being given NHL games in draft plus 1 (and 2).

Scungilli Slushy

OriginalPouzar: Definitely stands out as low vis-a-vis the talent level of the player.

I can say that, over the last three years aggregated, his most common linemates, by alot, almost 50% more than number 2, was Lucic.

Nuge at the right price is the type of player that are core to championship teams.

He is shy offensively, but he is a very smart player, a responsible player, and an easygoing person.

If you finally give him quality to play with and some functioning team play he can be a solid two way PPG guy who gets 20 goals playing toughs.

Players like that don’t grow on trees, and because his offense is lower it by necessity means he costs less to keep. Salary is relative to current cap.

Every team has to be constructed uniquely because so many inputs can’t be controlled. A good GM can find the pieces missing that fit the puzzle.

OriginalPouzar

ArmchairGM:
Players I suggested pursuing in free agency / trade this summer and where they fit into the Oilers of the past 3 year, 5v5 P/60 (TOI) – with a 1000 minute minimum:

Connor McDavid: 2.95 (4021)
Leon Draisaitl: 2.31 (3682)
Brett Connolly: 2.19 (2382) **
Jason Pominville: 1.93 (2791) **
Andre Burakovsky: 1.91 (2235) **
Ryan Dzingel: 1.81 (3215) **
Patrick Maroon: 1.79 (2014)
Jordan Eberle: 1.75 (1130)
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins: 1.72 (3101)
Zack Kassian: 1.42 (2659)
Tyler Ennis: 1.35 (1820) **
Jujhar Khaira: 1.34 (1481)

Not so many “bets” here, more “clear roster improvement”. Even if these guys didn’t flourish here, they’re still known quantities and can be counted on to play above replacement level minutes in the NHL. Of course we couldn’t have landed all of them, but 2 or 3 of them would have been possible.

Man, I still don’t understand what Holland is doing. He goes and gets Markus Granlund (1.07 P/60 in 2400 minutes) and a bunch of wild card bets out of Europe and the AHL. It certainly doesn’t jive with his stated goal of making the playoffs, let alone adding any building blocks for future success. He must really, really like the Oilers odds in the next lottery, because that’s exactly where he’s heading unless some of these long-shot bets payoff in a big way. History and common sense say they won’t, but it won’t stop Oilers Nation from hoping against hope. Again.

There were definitely players available, as you suggest, that would have been more of a “sure thing” to help this year but acquiring them would not jive with his stated primary goal of building a Stanley Cup contender within the next few years.

Signing Connolly, for term, likely does not move the needle in the top 6 and could very well serve to prohibit a more substantial acquisition (or at least inhibit) and decrease the cap currency over the next few years to take advantage of other cap crunch teams when the Oilers cap situation is better – 2021 offseason most likely for the real ability to do so.

OriginalPouzar

LadiesloveSmid:
That 3C spot seems to be Marody’s to lose. I suppose we’ll see who Tippett lines up with who in camp.

Haas is 27 and scores less than Arcobello. Khaira scored 2 last year.

I believe that Cooper should definitely be in the conversation with the other two but Tippett keeps mentioning Haas and Khaira as options and I think its clear they’ll get long looks.

Hopefully Marody gets some legit time with legit NHL players during camp and exhibition.

If he continually is linked to the likes of Currie or P. Russell and Brodziak (just for examples), he’ll have zero real chance to win that job.

He deserves the opportunity to play with some legit skill, even just the Granlund, Khaira, Gagner level, to see what he can do.

He is a skilled player and has produced at each level when played with skill – college then the AHL.

Maybe he can check off the next box, NHL, if given a legit chance.

OriginalPouzar

HT Joe:
Am I the only one sort of floored by RNH’s 5×5 numbers?I guess it’s elite competition combined with poor winger support (and probably further worsened by the Oilers never having good enough defencemen to drive offense beyond the top line).Is this about right?By eye test (I know, I know) he seems like a better player than the “best of the second tier”.

Definitely stands out as low vis-a-vis the talent level of the player.

I can say that, over the last three years aggregated, his most common linemates, by alot, almost 50% more than number 2, was Lucic.

OriginalPouzar

Ryan: Read some article at the Athletic recently. Apparently, Aberg didn’t like attending any of the optional skating days with the wild which Boudreau didn’t apparently like.

Not the it means anything one way or the other, he was the last guy to return from Europe last off-season, essentially on the even of camp. No participation in any of those informal team skates leading up to camp.

He does have a young kid over there mind you.

Scungilli Slushy

godot10: Holland isn’t betting on Neal rebounding.The purpose of the trade was to get rid of Lucic’s contract.If Neal has to be bought out next summer, it is still a win for the Oilers, because the next result will be creating $3 million in cap space over the following three seasons.

Neal also doesn’t require expansion protection methinks, even if around. Uuuuuuge.

OriginalPouzar

jtblack:
GREAT STUFF LT !

Seems like Edmonton has had players that can post good to decent 5×5/60 BUT the GM never kept them …

3 players here from Group 1.
3 players here from Group 2. That’s 6 out of 20 from the Group you want.

The prospect depth is clearly on the Blueline now, with Samorkov, Bouchard and Broberg.Pretty sure Ken is going to move a Good NHL dman for a good forward (like Colorado did) …. the question is when?

I think we see that managers value actual points over P/60.

We discussed this quite a bit with ArmChair and others during the great Connolly debate and as a concept, P/60 from playing in the bottom 6 often does not translate when tried in the top 6 – more minutes, tougher comp, etc. – of course, better linemates.

Yes, at some point it looks like a d-men or d-men will llikely be moved for forward help and the question is indeed “when”. To me, the time wasn’t this off-season as we still don’t know what he have with basically any of the d-men. So many great arrows but arrows break and swerve with prospects.

We can’t trade an incumbent top 4 as we have no reasonable assurance of filling the spot and trading one of the prospects themselves seems a bit early as they haven’t quite proven themselves as NHL players or top 4 NHL players. Sure, Bear or Berglund as a sweetener (different levels of sweetener) could work.

We will know so much more in 8-10 months on guys like Jones and Lagesson from NHL time and guys like Bouchard and Samorukov from AHL time (and, potentially, NHL time). Even Broberg’s development in a really good league should provide great info.

Maybe there is indeed a pop and one of these guys not only proves legit NHL ready but legit top 4 by the end of the year? That would open up an option to trade an incumbent for forward help. For example, Nurse, it would save us millions and millions on the cap for the next few years and we’d get big value for Nurse in the trade (assuming another good year).

Scungilli Slushy

Bling:
OriginalPouzar,

Maybe we disagree on this, but to me both the 3C and 4C spots are wide open.

Having Haas/Marody/Khaira battling for those spots makes sense from a roster construction point of view, especially seeing as how Khaira has never excelled at the centre ice position. He is so much more effective as a winger, where he can engage in more puck battles.

I don’t see Brodziak making the team period.

His only hope is being RC and a history of good faceoffs. Only other options are Gagner and Marody.

jp

ArmchairGM: If you remove the players mentioned, bury Brodziak and Manning and reverse the Lucic trade you are left with $11.5M in cap space. Add Caleb Jones, Connolly, Dzingel, Pominville and Benson and you are left with a hair over $2M to sign a backup goalie. The cap space defense doesn’t hold water.

To do that you used the entirety of the 2.4M cap cushion the Oilers currently have, signed Connolly for the same figure he didn’t accept from the Oilers and Pominville for 850k (which the Oilers could still do today or tomorrow or the next day). Your math is technically correct but not realistic IMO.

I do agree the Oilers could theoretically have added one of Connolly, Dzingel or Burakovsky (pending the players willingness to sign in Edmonton). I don’t agree multiple of the improvements you’re suggesting (on players making more than $1M) were possible.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

HT Joe:
Am I the only one sort of floored by RNH’s 5×5 numbers?I guess it’s elite competition combined with poor winger support (and probably further worsened by the Oilers never having good enough defencemen to drive offense beyond the top line).Is this about right?By eye test (I know, I know) he seems like a better player than the “best of the second tier”.

RNH is one of the most overrated players by Oilers fans. Does not score well 5×5 and has been a consistently poor PKer. He is likely not worth 6M a season now and I hate to see what his next contract looks like.

godot10

Silver Streak:
Flames LD J Valimaki has torn MCL while training…..this is a huge loss for them…he is on his entry level contract at under $900,000. Flames were counting on him playing 2 LD and munching big minutes ….Treliving is on the phones looking for an experience LD…..

THIS is our Russell – out moment. A pick, or Bennettincluded in the deal if expanded might make sense.

As LT says…We Wait

Russell 50% retained for Frolik.

Reja

tileguy: But not what we are paying him.

It’s only for a year and maybe he’ll surprise under Tippett along with a couple of other players.

Silver Streak

Flames LD J Valimaki has torn MCL while training…..this is a huge loss for them…he is on his entry level contract at under $900,000. Flames were counting on him playing 2 LD and munching big minutes ….Treliving is on the phones looking for an experience LD…..

THIS is our Russell – out moment. A pick, or Bennett included in the deal if expanded might make sense.

As LT says…We Wait

jtblack

OriginalPouzar: Agree with all of this.

He is a 22nd overall pick, not a top 10 pick and he just finished his first season of pro. Reasonable expectations would have had him in the conversation for the NHL this coming season after a full year of the AHL.

Being given NHL games both in his draft plus 1 and draft plus 2 years didn’t seem right at the time and clearly wasn’t right now.

If Kailer had a full season in the AHL last year, I would suspect he’d be further along but he never got that and the development time he did have was uneven due to being yo-yoed and the injuries.

He did prove down the stretch, prior to injury, to be a plus plus AHL player and I suspect his scoring numbers would have been right with Marody and Benson if he played and was healthy and that is what I expect to see this coming year, assuming health.

To me the only real worry at this point is injury.

+1. I said at draft time, Tyler Johnson was a good progression to track. Draft +5 he made NHL full time. KY still has time. Doesn’t gurantee he will make it, but most ppl certainly didn’t expect him to be in the NHL sooner.

OriginalPouzar

McNuge:
Not sure it’s fair to call Yam a failure. I guess the failure is the GM and coach betting on him so early. Yam is probably right where we should have expected him to be with the caveat that injuries have held him back somewhat. A good year in Bake and he may be our top forward prospect along with Benson. Here’s hoping.

Agree with all of this.

He is a 22nd overall pick, not a top 10 pick and he just finished his first season of pro. Reasonable expectations would have had him in the conversation for the NHL this coming season after a full year of the AHL.

Being given NHL games both in his draft plus 1 and draft plus 2 years didn’t seem right at the time and clearly wasn’t right now.

If Kailer had a full season in the AHL last year, I would suspect he’d be further along but he never got that and the development time he did have was uneven due to being yo-yoed and the injuries.

He did prove down the stretch, prior to injury, to be a plus plus AHL player and I suspect his scoring numbers would have been right with Marody and Benson if he played and was healthy and that is what I expect to see this coming year, assuming health.

To me the only real worry at this point is injury.

Bank Shot

HT Joe:
Am I the only one sort of floored by RNH’s 5×5 numbers?I guess it’s elite competition combined with poor winger support (and probably further worsened by the Oilers never having good enough defencemen to drive offense beyond the top line).Is this about right?By eye test (I know, I know) he seems like a better player than the “best of the second tier”.

RNH has never produced great numbers given the opportunities he has been given over the years.

Oilers are in a tough spot on his next contract because they can’t afford to lose him but he probably won’t provide much value to the team at the $8 million per he’ll likely be looking for.