The Edmonton Oilers have employed some small players in the past. Bobby Sheehan was a favourite of mine in the 1970s (former California Golden Seals burner), Risto Siltanen was well shy of six feet. I remember meeting Andy Moog for the first time, I was shocked he wasn’t taller (he looked like a giant on television). In the history of the organization, very few players have had a mid-season impact similar to that of Kailer Yamamoto.
In that way, the young man stands tall. His return is the topic of conversation all over Edmonton. Every day. As it turns out, Yamamoto’s return isn’t the only imminent addition. Looks like they’re getting the band back together.
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 Athletic, less than two coffees a month offer here.
- New Lowetide: Is the OHL still the Oilers’ primary resource at the draft?
- Lowetide: The Oilers’ 2017 draft and the value of waiting five years
- Jonathan Willis: Oilers’ AHL factory has produced three NHL defencemen, with more on the way
- Jonathan Willis: Andreas Athanasiou injured, Mike Green elevated in Oilers’ loss to Vegas
- Lowetide: Andreas Athanasiou acquisition might give the Oilers a scoring winger for McDavid cluster.
- Jonathan Willis: Oilers salvage a point as newcomers settle in (and produce) with Connor McDavid
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Are Oilers poised for a long playoff run after Ken Holland’s deadline moves?
- Lowetide: Ken Holland’s Oilers trade deadline active, targeted and predictable
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Andreas Athanasiou acquisition the most intriguing deadline move for Oilers
- Jonathan Willis: Shrewd addition of Tyler Ennis gives the Oilers insurance, options up front
- Jonathan Willis: Connor McDavid returns to the Oilers; now the task is to get him linemates
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Oilers bolster blue line by acquiring Mike Green; Is a scoring winger next?
- Lowetide: Oilers’ European prospects offer interesting options for the future
- Lowetide: Making sense of the Oilers forward depth chart for the summer
- Lowetide: For Oilers’ Kailer Yamamoto and Leon Draisaitl, first impressions are long forgotten. Why not for Jesse Puljujarvi?
- Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Stepping out and up, Leon Draisaitl puts himself in the Hart Trophy mix in Connor McDavid’s absence
- Lowetide: Making sense of the Oilers defensive depth chart for the stretch run and the summer
OILERS AFTER 66 GAMES
- Oilers in 2015-16: 25-34-7, 57 points; goal differential -28
- Oilers in 2016-17: 35-23-8, 78 points; goal differential +11
- Oilers in 2017-18: 28-34-4, 60 points; goal differential -37
- Oilers in 2018-19: 29-30-7, 65 points; goal differential -21
- Oilers in 2019-20: 34-23-8, 76 points; goal differential +1
This is going to be a difficult week, starting with games tonight and tomorrow against teams who are a combined 12-5-3 in the last 10 games. A split in the first two games would be a victory.
ON THE TENS
- First 10 games: 7-2-1
- Second 10 games: 5-4-1
- Third 10 games: 5-4-1
- Fourth 10 games: 3-6-1
- Fifth 10 games: 6-2-2
- Sixth 10 games: 6-3-1
- Current 10 games: 2-2-1
OILERS IN MARCH
- Oilers in March 2016: 1-0-0, two points; goal differential +1
- Oilers in March 2017: 1-0-0, two points; goal differential +1
- Oilers in March 2018: 0-1-0, zero points; goal differential -2
- Oilers in March 2019: 1-0-0, two points; goal differential +4
- Oilers in March 2020: 0-0-0, no points
WHAT TO EXPECT IN MARCH
- On the road to: NAS, DAL, CHI (Expected 1-1-1)
- At home to: CBJ, WPG, VEG, NYI (Expected 2-2-0)
- On the road to: PHI, WAS, OTT (Expected 1-1-1)
- At home to: TBY, ANA, COL, SJS, ANA, VEG (Expected: 3-2-1)
- Overall expected result: 7-6-3, 17 points in 16 games
- Current results: None
If the Oilers match my predictions, the team will reach the end of March with a record of 41-29-11, 93 points. The club will have one game left in the schedule, against Calgary, and that game has the potential to be a king maker in terms of playoffs.
Oscar Klefbom, James Neal and Yamamoto are apparently on the trip and that means we could see some fascinating roster and lineup decisions. Will Dave Tippett HS Kris Russell and play Caleb Jones on the third pairing? Where will James Neal play? Would Tippett play Patrick Russell over any of Yamamoto, Kassian, Ennis, Neal, Chiasson? Would he?
It was a good weekend for the Oilers, everyone around them had some troubles. Vancouver’s third period against Columbus came out of the sky, as did Vegas losing to the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday night. A win tonight gets Edmonton a little clearance on Arizona: Ahead by six points, with a game in hand and the Coyotes with only 15 games left on the schedule.
BAKERSFIELD CONDORS 2019-20
I wonder how many Oilers kids will be recalled for the playoffs, should the Oilers make it. In Game 1 of the 2006 playoffs, Edmonton had nine men scratched. The hope at the time, and I remember this era very well, was the Marc Pouliot, Matt Greene, Ty Conklin and the other young players would absorb the playoff experience and help propel the team to great heights in the future.
Among current Condors, who would you suggest the team recall for playoff experiences after the season? Evan Bouchard for sure, but Colby Cave played for the Oilers this season, should he get the call over someone like Ryan McLeod? Or Tyler Benson, who played but just a few games?
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
A busy morning, I’ll be on the roundtable with Dusty and Eric at 9. Lowdown begins at 10, TSN1260. We’ll talk Predators with Kristopher Martel from Neutral Zone 1045 at 10:20. The Predators are running hot currently and have been a tough out for the Oilers since forever. We’ll touch base on the current state of the home team. Jason Gregor from TSN1260’s Jason Gregor Show will talk Oilers at 11, including the return of Yamamoto and others this week. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!