Dad, Sam and the NHL’s return

He was born in Radisson, Saskatchewan 1912, I expect he’d recognize it if he drove into town today. He’d be sitting in a Ford, or a Mercury, the country radio playing Hank Williams and about a quarter inch of dust on the dashboard. Dad was always working, so he always smelled like sweat mixed with varsol or soap, even when he put on a suit. He had sad eyes, and he lived a tough life before I met him, his whole generation did and that’s a fact. He worked the land, he built houses—a little crooked if you caught what Mom said under her breath—and he never swore. He wasn’t perfect, if he got mad he could spend the whole damn day being contrary. He didn’t really understand the idea of easing up, he beat our neighbour Alfred Toner so bad in cribbage one Saturday night he never came back to the house. They’d been playing for many years at the time.

Dad froze his hands somewhere along the way, the nails on his fingers were very thick, he said they didn’t hurt and I believed him. I stared at his hands all the time as a kid. He had some kind of nerve damage, maybe from the war, and sometimes when he woke up from a nap he left eyelid wouldn’t open for a time. Used to scare the hell out of me.

Dad lost a lot of his hearing in the war, got sun stroke hacking ties for the railroad and that put him in the hospital for the week. He and Mom always had coffee at 10 and 3, every day they were together, and would talk and laugh and make plans. I loved being around at coffee breaks, it was the time of day when both parents were most content and it had a calming effect on me.

Dad had a way about him, you knew when it was time to go to bed and visitors knew when it was time to go home. One time, when I was maybe 10, it was late and visitors were still at our house. I distinctly remember Dad saying “Lois, let’s go to bed so these people can go home” and everyone laughed and then the visitors left! Holy hell!

He was a loner, but he was kind to my Mom and never gave her a reason to doubt him. His Dad had abused his Mom, so he was sensitive to disrespect to my Mom and to demon liquor, we had none in our home I can recall. He never told me he loved me until he was dying at the Cross Cancer Institute, but I knew every day that he loved me.

My Mom called him “Dammit Ira” 10,000 times, and he called her darling every day. He wasn’t an easy man to have for a Dad, but he was a good one. I can still hear him laugh, I never saw him cry. He badly missed his brother Roy, who he lost in the war. I saw him get his feelings hurt just once, when my brother asked him if we could call him ‘the old man’ as that was a phrase used at the time. The things I fought about with my Dad were few, hair length was one and I’m here to tell you it was the silliest damn thing to argue about in the history of time.

He got a job at Husky when he really needed one, he never forgot it, not ever. He loved working for CN, he worked at a tough job past 60 and worried that CN would eventually retire him (and they did).

A few years after my wife and I were married, we came to visit (Mom and Dad lived in tower three Southgate at the time). Jo had terrible cramps and for some reason they didn’t have a hot water bottle, so Dad and I drove at 2am to the drug store on Jasper Avenue to pick one up. On the way back, driving his Ford, he told me I’d married the right girl and he was proud of me. My best day.

On the night he died (at Mewburn Veterans Centre), I was 31, we lived at West Edmonton Village, and both Jo and I got home late from work and tired. We’d been going up to see Dad every night for two weeks and I was exhausted. Jo put in some laundry and said she’d be ready to go in about 20 minutes, I said I’m not going. We had a helluva fight. She won. I got to Mewburn in time to say goodbye. You don’t choose your Dad, but all children deserve to have someone who loves them, protects them and raises them well. My Dad was a poor farmer from Saskatchewan, he did the best he could with what God gave him. I remain proud to be his son.

Call your Dad.

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 Athletic, check it out here.

Samwise

Sam Gagner signed his big contract on July 22, 2013. Three years times $4.8 million, and that’s the day I believe he got himself dealt by the Oilers. His 2012-13 season didn’t go as planned. Gagner was 23 and in his sixth NHL season, a point he should have been taking over from Shawn Horcoff and protecting young Ryan Nugent-Hopkins by taking on the tough minutes. His five on five scoring rates had been solid (1.94 in 2011-12), his shot share was 48 percent and goal share 54.65 percent. Here’s what the centers did in 2012-13, leading in to contract negotiations:

Nuge was playing the big minutes, his most common linemates were Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle and Hall was the feature player (3.05 five on five per 60) for opponents. So Nuge is 19, Horcoff is 34, Belanger is trying to catch Yakupov to give him what for, and Sam Gagner is 23 and didn’t play the toughest minutes. Not only that, his possession number was poor, meaning that the Kid Line OFF ICE possession number was an absolute disaster. Pretty sure the die was cast on a trade out of town before the ink was dry on that contract.

Gagner’s return in 2019-20 showed a different player. He’s no longer a center, no longer relied on to play big game moments, and his possession numbers were excellent compared to his fellow bottom-six linemates:

Could the Oilers bring Gagner back over Russell? I think it’s possible. He doesn’t PK, but is productive on the power play and his possession numbers have been rock solid for some time. Samwise learned the trade. I’m glad to have seen him again in a different point in his career. So many young Oilers had to move away and get a second opinion. Sam was one.

THE NHL’S RETURN

I’d love to see the NHL return for the playoffs and to see a champion receive Stanley. Only if it’s safe. The news that some NHL players have tested positive was somewhat expected, but if even one of them suffers long-term health issues, then shut it down. Seriously. My being entertained is worth exactly zero lives. I’ll watch Murder, She Wrote and old games until everyone is safe again. No Joe Hall this time. Not a one.

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104 Responses to "Dad, Sam and the NHL’s return"

  1. geowal says:

    My first Father’s Day, but I still need to call my Dad. Well said LT. Happy Fathers Day to all the Dads out there.

  2. tileguy says:

    You know, If you were to write a book, fiction, non fiction, combination of both, maybe call it “On the Farm”, I would buy it. I can see my fingers running through the dust on the dashboard and can smell the varsol. Your writing reminds me of Cam Cole.

  3. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Love your stories about your Dad.

    Reminds me of my Dad.

    Thanks LT

  4. Greenberg says:

    Thanks for the Dad story. A touching tribute, Prairie style. Leaves you grateful.

  5. buck yoakam says:

    Very touching and honest story LT..you certainly have a lyrical way of writing that reminds me of many a john prine tune…I am so grateful for this hockey escape daily!…Happy Fathers day to all today!…thanks again LT

  6. leadfarmer says:

    Happy Father’s Day to all the dads.

    The players will be alright. It’s all the coaching staff and ancillary workers we have to worry about

  7. dustrock says:

    Happy Father’s Day all.

    À great story as always LT.

    Enjoy the day.

  8. wheatnoil says:

    Happy Father’s Day LT.

    I didn’t know your dad and never met your kids.

    But, I feel pretty confident saying he’d be proud of the dad you became.

    Cheers. And to all the dads… biological and otherwise.

  9. Oiler_Kiwi97 says:

    Thanks for sharing the story about your Dad Alan. He sounded like a top bloke and I can relate a lot of this to my Dad and Mum. I never got the chance to say goodbye to my Dad. I had been transferred away with work and hadn’t seen him for 3 weeks. He died at the age of 56 without seeing any of his grandchildren. As Lowetide says, Phone your Dad.

  10. Harpers Hair says:

    Al…you are a fantastic story teller.

    I think you will really appreciate this Dad story I ran across yesterday…the Madness of Men.

    https://classic.esquire.com/article/2010/6/1/the-madness-of-men

  11. Jordan says:

    Happy Father’s Day my friends.

    Been lurking a lot the last few months, but have remained grateful for the people here, the discourse and the opinions. We’re all pretty awesome, and I feel lucky to be a part of the community.

    Will be calling dad soon LT. After 10 am Mountain ( don’t want to wake him up too early on father’s day, right?)

    Hope all of your days are full of love and peace (just he kind playing cribbage).

  12. unca miltie says:

    Thank you for another moving family story. The quote about lets go to bed and let these poor folks go home was famous in our home as well. I think that is a Saskatchewan thing. My dad was also a hard working farmer. He lived to be 98 and his mind was going at the end. He often told the story of how they moved from the dust bowl in Southern Saskatchewan to Nipawin in the early 30’s. Everything they owned including cattle in 2 rails cars. he also was a man to be admired. Would do anything to help his neighbors. I truly believe that those of us who grew up in Saskatchewan are very fortunate because we were trained to live the right way, Not something I have always done by the way but a high standard to try to live up to. Happy fathers day all.

  13. jp says:

    Very moving intro LT, just wonderful.

    Happy Father’s day to all the fathers!

  14. defmn says:

    From Leavins Nine things.

    https://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhl-hub-competition-is-down-to-as-few-as-4-teams-and-the-edmonton-oilers-are-one-of-them-9-things/

    6. Do not be surprised if sometime over the next few weeks Jesse Puljujarvi signs a 1-year extension with Karpat of the Finnish Professional League. Expect that such a deal would come with an NHL-out embedded. Puljujarvi’s recent “never say never” comment was taken by some to be a sign that he was open to returning to Edmonton. In reality was it merely an effort to rehabilitate his trade value?

    And Happy Daddy Day to everyone.

  15. geowal says:

    My Dad is still farming 75 head of cattle at the age of 69. With School closed hrs getting a lot of help from my nephew, which is great. I can really relate to dusty dashes and cracked hands, sometimes to the bone. But he loved visitors, never one to shut the party down.

  16. alberta bound edmonton says:

    Thank you LT. Your story connects as my dad lived through the tough prairie years and his ongoing give to me is his role model of being a great dad. Hope I am living up to it. Again thanks on this Father’s Day

  17. maudite says:

    My 5 year old niece stayed at farm overnight so she could wake up and make grandad a hot chocolate.

    Last photo my mom sent they two of them were outside filling bird feeders. He always seems to be a fan favourite for the younger years.

    Short on words but long on action. I hope my dad never tells me he loves me anytime soon.

    Thanks LT your description brought a tear to my eye. Prairie boys with rough handed prairie dads us definitely a thing.

  18. jp says:

    LT: “Could the Oilers bring Gagner back over Russell?”

    I’d love to see Gagner return as long as it’s under $1M. Maybe he can earn a regular spot. If not he can fill in through the lineup as needed and be 13/14F otherwise. Good guy to have around IMO.

  19. hungoverman says:

    Thanks LT for your writing about your Dad!!! I just called mine. My now 17 year old son just made me breakfast and dammit it was good. He beat cancer and briefly died many years ago. Now…here he (and his sister) make me proud everyday of my life.
    PS: Please never stop writing your family stories LT. I look forward to them every year.

  20. godot10 says:

    defmn:
    From Leavins Nine things.

    https://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhl-hub-competition-is-down-to-as-few-as-4-teams-and-the-edmonton-oilers-are-one-of-them-9-things/

    6. Do not be surprised if sometime over the next few weeks Jesse Puljujarvi signs a 1-year extension with Karpat of the Finnish Professional League. Expect that such a deal would come with an NHL-out embedded. Puljujarvi’s recent “never say never” comment was taken by some to be a sign that he was open to returning to Edmonton. In reality was it merely an effort to rehabilitate his trade value?

    And Happy Daddy Day to everyone.

    I believe the Ruotsaleinan Rule applies. If Jesse plays a league game in Europe, other than just practices, he has to clear waivers before returning.

    With the Ruotsalainen Rule, there is no NHL out clause unless all 31 NHL teams agree to allow him to pass through waivers.

  21. OriginalPouzar says:

    A few months ago, I was all for bringing Sam Gagner back as a utility guy that can play all over the lineup for apx $1MM.

    I then got excited to have Anton Slepyshev in that role until that door closed.

    Now I don’t wonder if Tyler Ennis isn’t the better option – a bit quicker with more offensive punch these days I think.

    Either way – contending teams don’t have Patrick Russell on their opening night rosters – he’s a 15F/16F on a contending team, in my opinion.

  22. OriginalPouzar says:

    Yes, the health and safety of the players, coaches, personnel, etc. must be paramount.

    Positive cases now, as the players are out and about in society.

    When you take a step back and think about it, will the members of the quarantine bubble not be safer than those outside it?

    I mean, right now, players are out and about in Florida, Arizona, etc. – won’t they be “safer” in a strict quarantine bubble subject to 100 page protocol document?

  23. Woogie63 says:

    godot10,

    EVERY one of our ELC must sign a second contract. All agents and young players must understand that business decision if they become an Oiler.

    Failure to establish this rule, will mean more kids select to play elsewhere or demand huge second contracts, both are bad outcomes for a small market NHL team.

    Jesse come an play for the Oilers or stay in Finland until you are irrelevant to the NHL. Those are the choices. Establishing this for all to see is much more valuable than trading you for a second round pick.

  24. OriginalPouzar says:

    defmn:
    From Leavins Nine things.

    https://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhl-hub-competition-is-down-to-as-few-as-4-teams-and-the-edmonton-oilers-are-one-of-them-9-things/

    6. Do not be surprised if sometime over the next few weeks Jesse Puljujarvi signs a 1-year extension with Karpat of the Finnish Professional League. Expect that such a deal would come with an NHL-out embedded. Puljujarvi’s recent “never say never” comment was taken by some to be a sign that he was open to returning to Edmonton. In reality was it merely an effort to rehabilitate his trade value?

    And Happy Daddy Day to everyone.

    If Jesse signs back in Karpat, to me, its a signal that he’s still interested in coming back to the NHL (and maybe the Oilers) this coming season.

    Reason being is the “out clause” that will be included.

    From accounts, there are KHL teams interested in Jesse and, if Jesse signed in the KHL, as oppossed to Liiga, it would preclude his NHL return during the term of the contract.

  25. OriginalPouzar says:

    godot10: I believe the Ruotsaleinan Rule applies.If Jesseplays a league game in Europe, other than just practices, he has to clear waivers before returning.

    With the Ruotsalainen Rule, there is no NHL out clause unless all 31 NHL teams agree to allow him to pass through waivers.

    You are correct but only if he plays in Europe prior to the NHL Regular Season starting:

    13.23 In the event a professional or former professional Player plays in a league outside North
    America after the start of the NHL Regular Season, other than on Loan from his Club, he may
    thereafter play in the NHL during that Playing Season (including Playoffs) only if he has first
    either cleared or been obtained via Waivers. For the balance of the Playing Season, any such
    Player who has been obtained via Waivers may be Traded or Loaned only after again clearing
    Waivers or through Waiver claim. This section shall not apply to a Player on the Reserve List or
    Restricted Free Agent List of an NHL Club with whom the Player is signing an NHL SPC or is
    party to an existing SPC with such NHL Club.

    ———-

    As an aside, if he signed in the NHL and was loaned to Karpat then waivers wouldn’t be required upon return even if he played after the NHL season started. This likely is NOT an option here.

  26. JimmyV1965 says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Yes, the health and safety of the players, coaches, personnel, etc. must be paramount.

    Positive cases now, as the players are out and about in society.

    When you take a step back and think about it, will the members of the quarantine bubble not be safer than those outside it?

    I mean, right now, players are out and about in Florida, Arizona, etc. – won’t they be “safer” in a strict quarantine bubble subject to 100 page protocol document?

    I was thinking the same thing. Wouldn’t the quarantine be one of the safest places in North America? And I know this sounds cold, but I’ll say it again, young people are more likely to get killed or injured driving down the highway than Covid

  27. Woogie63 says:

    I like Sam Gagner- but Sail On.

    Sam is probably a good 13/14 forward now.

    At this stage of his career – I think Cooper Marody can fill that position and it is a good sign for all those NCAA college grads – it is a good choice to sign with Edmonton.

  28. N64 says:

    OriginalPouzar: When you take a step back and think about it, will the members of the quarantine bubble not be safer than those outside it?

    Absolutely. Unless it gets in and then that high contact cohort is a more dangerous place than the general community #benningeffect.

    If they are very serious good chance they keep it out but much much harder if the service staff are living in high transmission.

    Vegas? Round robin after 1 week in the bubble? One case slips through any of 31 phase 3 and best of luck. They need to be more serious. If the #benningeffect breaks loose players likely fine but for the playoffs and some staff not so much.

  29. N64 says:

    OriginalPouzar: As an aside, if he signed in the NHL and was loaned to Karpat then waivers wouldn’t be required upon return even if he played after the NHL season started. This likely is NOT an option here.

    And yet waivers eliminate his trade value during the season.Path should match your goal.

  30. N64 says:

    defmn: https://edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/nhl/cult-of-hockey/the-nhl-hub-competition-is-down-to-as-few-as-4-teams-and-the-edmonton-oilers-are-one-of-them-9-things

    Interesting that from the player viewpoint 5 agents are pushing for the the Van+Edm solution. I don’t think the NHL can afford all in Canada, but interesting if they can at least push this from Vegas

  31. defmn says:

    N64: Interesting that from the player viewpoint 5 agents are pushing for the the Van+Edm solution. I don’t think the NHL can afford all in Canada, but interesting if they canat least push this from Vegas

    Leavins is just speculating, of course, but he has a pretty solid track record.

  32. Ancient Oilers Fan says:

    OriginalPouzar: You are correct but only if he plays in Europe prior to the NHL Regular Season starting:

    13.23 In the event a professional or former professional Player plays in a league outside North
    America after the start of the NHL Regular Season, other than on Loan from his Club, he may
    thereafter play in the NHL during that Playing Season (including Playoffs) only if he has first
    either cleared or been obtained via Waivers. For the balance of the Playing Season, any such
    Player who has been obtained via Waivers may be Traded or Loaned only after again clearing
    Waivers or through Waiver claim. This section shall not apply to a Player on the Reserve List or
    Restricted Free Agent List of an NHL Club with whom the Player is signing an NHL SPC or is
    party to an existing SPC with such NHL Club.

    Doesn’t the part of the section that starts ” This section does not apply…”mean that as long as he signs with the Oilers or any team they trade his rights to waivers are not required.

    That was what almost got the Flames in trouble with the RFA offer sheet but they were saved when the Avalanche matched.

    The only restriction would be there final signing date, the same as last year.

  33. tileguy says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Yes, the health and safety of the players, coaches, personnel, etc. must be paramount.

    Positive cases now, as the players are out and about in society.

    When you take a step back and think about it, will the members of the quarantine bubble not be safer than those outside it?

    I mean, right now, players are out and about in Florida, Arizona, etc. – won’t they be “safer” in a strict quarantine bubble subject to 100 page protocol document?

    Can you imagine what would happen if just one case pops up inside that bubble.

  34. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: If Jesse signs back in Karpat, to me, its a signal that he’s still interested in coming back to the NHL (and maybe the Oilers) this coming season.

    Reason being is the “out clause” that will be included.

    From accounts, there are KHL teams interested in Jesse and, if Jesse signed in the KHL, as oppossed to Liiga, it would preclude his NHL return during the term of the contract.

    Could a player negotiate an out clause in a KHL deal?

    Otherwise I agree signing in Finland is better than the KHL. Though I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a signal he’s interested in returning.

  35. N64 says:

    tileguy: Can you imagine what would happen if just one case pops up inside that bubble.

    The 2 risks are:

    1 of the teams arrives with 1 missed asymptomatic case that spreads quietly and surfaces after the round robin starts. 1 week send short.

    Introduction from service worker living outside bubble. Bus driver etc. Lots of precautions but same silent #benneningeffect. In this case host city matters

    One case will likely be fine, but hard to imagine one case not being more.

  36. Scungilli Slushy says:

    Another beauty LT Happy Fathers Day to you and all.

    Not the easiest day for everyone, for those for whom it isn’t, all the best to you.

  37. Scungilli Slushy says:

    leadfarmer:
    Happy Father’s Day to all the dads.

    The players will be alright.It’s all the coaching staff and ancillary workers we have to worry about

    Thanks for the reasonable words, too few around this pox.

  38. N64 says:

    Scungilli Slushy: leadfarmer:
    Happy Father’s Day to all the dads.

    The players will be alright.It’s all the coaching staff and ancillary workers we have to worry about

    Thanks for the reasonable words, too few around this pox.

    +1

  39. Harlekiini says:

    It would appear that there is a rumour that Puljujärvi is going to sign a contract with Kärpät some day soon. 1 year, with an option for NHL (which I thought every contract in finnish league automatically has, but now I’m not so sure).

  40. Reja says:

    jp: Could a player negotiate an out clause in a KHL deal?

    Otherwise I agree signing in Finland is better than the KHL. Though I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a signal he’s interested in returning.

    He still has high hopes Holland will find him a landing spot elsewhere but Holland will not get pennies on the dollar. Jesse could very well see himself in the exact same circumstances one year from now and if he is l say he signs for the moola in the KHL until he’s a free agent. Jesse and his agent tried playing chicken with Holland big mistake, Jesse might of cooked his goose unless someone parts with a first ( Carolina) are something comparable this spring.

  41. jp says:

    JimmyV1965: I was thinking the same thing. Wouldn’t the quarantine be one of the safest places in North America? And I know this sounds cold, but I’ll say it again, young people are more likely to get killed or injured driving down the highway than Covid

    I’ll agree about the bubble being safe. But is the bit about car accidents actually true? (I know it’s oft cited)

    In Massachusetts there have been 45 covid deaths so far of people in their 20s and 30s.

    Massachusetts has roughly 350 traffic related deaths each year but 20-25% of them are pedestrians. So we’re down to roughly 280 total deaths to people in cars, trucks, on motorcycles (if we use the lower 20% pedestrians).

    The covid deaths have happened in 1/4 of a year. So there should have been about 70 traffic deaths in that time, compared to 45 covid deaths of 20 and 30 somethings. The traffic numbers are for all ages though, so I guess no more than half of them would be aged 20s/30s, fair? If we agree on half that’s 35 traffic deaths in 3 months vs 45 covid deaths in 3 months. Or 140 traffic vs 180 Covid in a year.

    They’re in the same ball park, I’ll agree. Though the Covid numbers are also including a large scale shut down of society and the economy… (the traffic numbers are from earlier years so wouldn’t be reduced due to Covid).

    Do you think this is really a reasonable comparison? You do I guess…

  42. fries n gravy says:

    geowal,

    Congrats! I’m on Father’s Day year 2 and am happy to report that the nights do get better.

  43. jp says:

    Reja: He still has high hopes Holland will find him a landing spot elsewhere but Holland will not get pennies on the dollar. Jesse could very well see himself in the exact same circumstances one year from nowand if he is l say he signs for the moola in the KHL until he’s a free agent. Jesse and his agent tried playing chicken with Holland big mistake, Jesse might of cooked his goose unless someone parts with a first ( Carolina) are something comparable this spring.

    Well we’ll see how it goes this year.

    Holland has time to work a deal and Puljujarvi may still re-sign with the Oilers (I don’t think we can read much at all into him re-signing with Karpat, if that actually happens). If there’s no path back to the NHL for him by next off season I do agree a KHL deal is likely.

  44. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Wonderful post, LT, & hair-raising story, HH. Thanks, both, for sharing.

    My dad passed in the fall of ’07, the year before I began blogging. I wrote about him twice on my first, solo blog, including this written on Father’s Day, 11 years ago today on 2009 Jun 21.

    I revisit this realtively short (for me!) post every Father’s Day, & have chosen to share it again this year because of the comments about race which yet again dominate the news cycle. I was so fortunate to have such an enlightened man to be my Dad. I miss him still, even as many of his principles live on in me, my siblings, & our own kids.

    Happy Father’s Day to all the dads here. Especially you, GeoWal. That first one is special.

  45. fries n gravy says:

    My vote doesn’t count, but Gagner makes my 2020-21 Oilers team on a low-$ 1-year deal in a heartbeat.

  46. Victoria Oil says:

    LT, thanks so much for sharing your story about your dad as well as your gift of story telling.

    By the way, when I first moved away from home, I lived in West Edmonton Village in 1982-83.

  47. jonrmcleod says:

    Very touching tribute to your Dad. Probably your best one yet. Honestly, it almost brought me to tears–and that’s a rare thing.

  48. Lowetide says:

    NEW for The Athletic: Oilers’ July 2015 orientation camp produced a watershed of NHL talent

    https://theathletic.com/1884603/2020/06/21/lowetide-oilers-july-2015-orientation-camp-produced-a-watershed-of-nhl-talent/

  49. N64 says:

    The Djoker’s no precautions tour has CROWNED (pun very intended) a winner: covid19 nails the final.

  50. Sunnyboy says:

    Sam should retire, has made his stash, has a young family, be a good Dad. A stay in Bakersfield he does not need. No sentiment for playing here, NO.

  51. SwedishPoster says:

    jp: I’ll agree about the bubble being safe. But is the bit about car accidents actually true? (I know it’s oft cited)

    In Massachusetts there have been 45 covid deaths so far of people in their 20s and 30s.

    Massachusetts has roughly 350 traffic related deaths each year but 20-25% of them are pedestrians. So we’re down to roughly 280 total deaths to people in cars, trucks, on motorcycles (if we use the lower 20% pedestrians).

    The covid deaths have happened in 1/4 of a year. So there should have been about 70 traffic deaths in that time, compared to 45 covid deaths of 20 and 30 somethings. The traffic numbers are for all ages though, so I guess no more than half of them would be aged 20s/30s, fair? If we agree on half that’s 35 traffic deaths in 3 months vs 45 covid deaths in 3 months. Or 140 traffic vs 180 Covid in a year.

    They’re in the same ball park, I’ll agree. Though the Covid numbers are also including a large scale shut down of society and the economy… (the traffic numbers are from earlier years so wouldn’t be reduced due to Covid).

    Do you think this is really a reasonable comparison? You do I guess…

    One has to remember that those dying from Covid in their 20s and 30s tend to have underlying issues, not all of them but the vast majority do, and not many NHLers are either obese or have serious medical conditions.

    Don’t know enough about the different players medical history to say if there is someone out there with any actual risk factors, I’m sure there are, Zuccarello and Letang having had blood clots is a bit concerning since covid increases the risk of pulmonary embolism for example. I know some guys, Kakko for example, have type 1 diabetes but it hasn’t really showed up as a stand alone risk factor, people with type 2 are at higher risk but that’s a different thing all together. Either way i’s important that all players have a dialogue with their respective doc about their individual risk and make the call from there.

    But for this group as a whole, young elite athletes with a competitive nature and enough money to buy really fast cars I’d say they are much more likely to die or get hurt while driving than from Covid.

  52. jtblack says:

    “all children deserve to have someone who loves them, protects them and raises them well. ”

    This rings true. I am a Dad. I have a kid on the way (Sep). My Dad just turned 80 He’s great. I wish I was able to say words like you just did LT. Brought a tear to my eye.

    Thanks

  53. Victoria Oil says:

    Lowetide:
    NEW for The Athletic: Oilers’ July 2015 orientation camp produced a watershed of NHL talent

    https://theathletic.com/1884603/2020/06/21/lowetide-oilers-july-2015-orientation-camp-produced-a-watershed-of-nhl-talent/

    LT – just curious, when we read your articles on The Athletic and rate them as ‘awesome’, does that help you out in anyway besides giving you brownie points? 🙂

  54. N64 says:

    SwedishPoster: But for this group as a whole, young elite athletes with a competitive nature and enough money to buy really fast cars I’d say they are much more likely to die or get hurt while driving than from Covid

    Yep. Any players with underlying conditions will likely sit out. But if 1 case gets in thrn the attack rate in close quarters puts the whole tourney in jeopardy of immediate cancellation. High transmission in staff population like Vegas magnifies the chance of introducing that case.

  55. Lowetide says:

    Victoria Oil: LT – just curious,when we read your articles on The Athletic and rate them as ‘awesome’, does that help you out in anyway besides giving you brownie points? 🙂

    Lol. It helps me because I get an idea about what you’d like to read, or what more people enjoy. I’m sure it benefits The Athletic on several levels about which I am not aware. So, keep it going! 🙂

  56. Lowetide says:

    Happy Father’s Day to all Dads who have chimed in, and thanks for the comments gents. Writing these is cathartic.

  57. JimmyV1965 says:

    jp: I’ll agree about the bubble being safe. But is the bit about car accidents actually true? (I know it’s oft cited)

    In Massachusetts there have been 45 covid deaths so far of people in their 20s and 30s.

    Massachusetts has roughly 350 traffic related deaths each year but 20-25% of them are pedestrians. So we’re down to roughly 280 total deaths to people in cars, trucks, on motorcycles (if we use the lower 20% pedestrians).

    The covid deaths have happened in 1/4 of a year. So there should have been about 70 traffic deaths in that time, compared to 45 covid deaths of 20 and 30 somethings. The traffic numbers are for all ages though, so I guess no more than half of them would be aged 20s/30s, fair? If we agree on half that’s 35 traffic deaths in 3 months vs 45 covid deaths in 3 months. Or 140 traffic vs 180 Covid in a year.

    They’re in the same ball park, I’ll agree. Though the Covid numbers are also including a large scale shut down of society and the economy… (the traffic numbers are from earlier years so wouldn’t be reduced due to Covid).

    Do you think this is really a reasonable comparison? You do I guess…

    The latest stats I could find for Canada are 1,922 motor vehicle fatalities in 2018. Of this total, 939 were 44 years old or younger. I would think there are far less than 100 Covid deaths in that age group, but finding numbers for that is challenging. We do know 80% of our 8,000 + Covid deaths have been in long term care centres.

    PS. What’s with all the pedestrian deaths in Mass? That number seems wildly high.

  58. leadfarmer says:

    NHL needs to bump the draft lotto this week before they make a mess of it.
    I don’t think they have the ability to pull this off.

    Everyone is thinking the bubble is to keep players from getting the virus but that’s going to be almost impossible to do.
    The key is to isolate this very very low risk population engaging in high risk activity from the general population

  59. Reja says:

    Victoria Oil:
    LT, thanks so much for sharing your story about your dad as well as your gift of story telling.

    By the way, when I first moved away from home, I lived in West Edmonton Village in 1982-83.

    I must be going senile I can’t believe I can’t remember the name of the lounge in the Village.I do remember having good times in that establishment.

  60. N64 says:

    leadfarmer:
    NHL needs to bump the draft lotto this week before they make a mess of it.
    I don’t think they have the ability to pull this off.

    Everyone is thinking the bubble is to keep players from getting the virus but that’s going to be almost impossible to do.
    The key is to isolate this very very low risk population engaging in high risk activity from the general population

    ~ Then maybe it should be in Vegas where any outward leakage would barely be noticed.~

    Inside the bubble the goal is to quickly stop transmission of any cases missed before intake or introduced afterwards. The latter cannot be completely prevented but Vegas is a bad place to try right now.

  61. SwedishPoster says:

    leadfarmer:
    NHL needs to bump the draft lotto this week before they make a mess of it.
    I don’t think they have the ability to pull this off.

    Everyone is thinking the bubble is to keep players from getting the virus but that’s going to be almost impossible to do.
    The key is to isolate this very very low risk population engaging in high risk activity from the general population

    Yeah, I’d say the main goals has to be making sure that NHL players and staff don’t increase the spread in the larger community, there will for sure be cases inside the hub but the optics of the NHL causing a major spread outside the hub wouldn’t be pretty.
    Also they can’t play where there is a high number of cases or high spreading rate because you can’t be somewhere where the hospitals are suddenly overwhelmed(and that can happen real quickly). Don’t want some player have a ruptured spleen or something and end up in a hospital where all the ORs and postoperative wards are filled with covid patients in need of ICU beds.

  62. Reja says:

    N64: ~ Then maybe it should be in Vegas where any outward leakage would barely be noticed.~

    Inside the bubble the goal is to quickly stop transmission of any cases missed before intake or introduced afterwards. The latter cannot be completely prevented but Vegas is a bad place to try right now.

    Can’t see it being in Edmonton the wife’s wouldn’t go for being cooped up in a hotel room. Vegas with its entertainment and gambling is much more attractive place to be locked up. The other hub has to be out east you would think.

  63. Harpers Hair says:

    Reja: Can’t see it being in Edmonton the wife’s wouldn’t go for being cooped up ina hotel room. Vegas with its entertainment and gambling is much more attractive place to be locked up. The other hub has to be out east you would think.

    Pretty sure it will be Vancouver.

    Many 5 star hotels near the arena and lots of nearby attractions.

  64. Reja says:

    Harpers Hair: Pretty sure it will be Vancouver.

    Many 5 star hotels near the arena and lots of nearby attractions.

    Yes Vancouver would be a nice landing spot for the Bubble, I still think one of the hubs is out East because of the time zone.

  65. frjohnk says:

    Great post today LT.

    I think the two hub cities will be Toronto and Vegas.

    Toronto because it’s the media center for hockey.

    Vegas because it will give the league more exposure than any other place.

    Winner of the Cup will be the team that has the least amount of players miss games due to catching Covid. Teams that have had a few players already recovered from Covid might have a leg up on the teams that haven’t had any.

  66. flyfish1168 says:

    Reja: Yes Vancouver would be a nice landing spot for the Bubble, I still think one of the hubs isout East because of the time zone.

    I agree with you. I made this same comment a few days ago. Larger fan base is out east unfortunately. 2 and 3 hrs difference would not playout well for eastern viewers. Never has and that is why the voting is the way it is on western players.

  67. Reja says:

    flyfish1168: I agree with you. I made this same comment a few days ago. Larger fan base is out east unfortunately. 2 and 3 hrs difference would not playout well for eastern viewers. Never has and that is why the voting is the way it is on western players.

    I still think Leon wins the Hart easily even though he doesn’t get the exposure. I’ll bet a Cee note for Charity Leon against the field if there’s any takers.

  68. Victoria Oil says:

    Reja: I must be going senile I can’t believe I can’t remember the name of the lounge in the Village.I do remember having good times in that establishment.

    I don’t remember the name of the lounge at West Edmonton Village either, but i do remember that I lived 25 metres away from it, so i was a frequent visitor.

  69. OriginalPouzar says:

    JimmyV1965: I was thinking the same thing. Wouldn’t the quarantine be one of the safest places in North America? And I know this sounds cold, but I’ll say it again, young people are more likely to get killed or injured driving down the highway than Covid

    We are generally on the same page but, for discussion:

    1) In theory the “bubble” should be cut off from society and safe but, in reality it won’t be airtight – some “staff” will be required to be part of it but it can’t be all (plus delivery people, etc.) and, if Covid does make its way in, its likely to create an outbreak within the bubble – I mean, is one Oiler going to get it and that’s it? Seems unlikely

    2) Yes, the risks are lower for the players but its not just players – what about the coaches? They are an older group and at higher risk. Just as an example.

  70. OriginalPouzar says:

    Woogie63:
    I like Sam Gagner- but Sail On.

    Sam is probablya good 13/14 forward now.

    At this stage of his career – I think Cooper Marody can fill that position and it is a good sign for all those NCAA college grads – it is a good choice to sign with Edmonton.

    If Cooper is healthy and re-establishes himself.

    I’m cautiously optimistic that is the case – he has talked alot over the last month about finally feeling himself and healthy. I don’t think he was “right” all year last year.

    With that said, it will be great if he earns himself a job on the roster, either at camp or as a call-up but, of course, our GM cannot “count on that” and there needs to be an incumbent for him to beat out. I’m not saying that’s Gagner but I think Holland needs to have a “pencilled in roster” going in to camp that doesn’t include Coop.

  71. OriginalPouzar says:

    N64: Absolutely. Unless it gets in and then that high contact cohort is amore dangerous place than the general community #benningeffect.

    If they are very serious good chance they keep it out but much much harder if the service staff are living in high transmission.

    Vegas? Round robin after 1 week in the bubble? One case slips through any of 31 phase 3 and best of luck. They need to be more serious. If the #benningeffect breaks loose players likely fine but for the playoffs and some staff not so much.

    Yup – the issue is “if it gets in”.

    I posted this on another platform:

    Football aside, for the leagues that are trying to finish the 2019/20 season, and playing in hubs/bubbles, such as the NHL and NBA, I do think it could work and positive tests now shouldn’t really change that.

    I mean, the NHL is in phase 2 – players are allowed, if they want, to use team facilities to workout and skate in small groups. If they choose to, they are subject to protocols at the rink and lots of testing, however, other than that, they are permitted to go about life. They are in society doing as they choose, along with the virus.

    When the NHL gets to phase 4, the players (and coaches, trainers, etc.) will be in a bubble that is cut off from society – sure, there will be some gaps, it won’t be airtight but, when I think about it, life in the bubble should be “safer from Covid” than life outside.

    A primary key is to ensure that, when players (and the rest) go in to the bubble, they are COVID free.

    In that regard, I think that phase 3, training camps, need to cut players off from society – it’ll essentially be like stage 4 and the hub except players can “go home” – they can’t go out an about, etc.

    I don’t know if the players will agree to that, and it still won’t be 100% safe for them (i.e. their families and stuff could “bring the virus home”) but I think its necessary if they are trying to get the bubbles for stage 4 covid free.

    As we know, once one player on a team gets it, its likely that there will be an outbreak.

  72. OriginalPouzar says:

    Young Yaremchuk is tweeting that a source with a “good connection to the league” has told him the league has made its choice – the East will play if Vegas and the West will play in Vancouver.

    Frankly, I understand Vancouver over Edmonton – their “Covid situation” is just as good as the Oilers and they have “better hotels” which is indeed important to the players.

    Two Pacific time zones will be interesting.

    Of course, if this is true and, if it is true, if it doesn’t change.

    The players would need to agree to this, of course.

    I would have thought the hubs would be included in the “great overall vote” on the entire Return to Play protocol but, perhaps the 31 execs will vote on the hub choices separately.

    I can’t wait to read/skim the massive Return to Play document that will ultimately be voted on and, hopefully, approved. Still uncertainty if the entire membership will vote or just the 31 execs. From accounts, many players want it to be a full union vote.

    Hopefully it also comes with a MOU for a CBA extension – legislate in Olympics, deal with the signing bonus issues, deal with cap and escrow in the short term.

    lets do this!

  73. OriginalPouzar says:

    N64: And yet waivers eliminate his trade value during the season.Path should match your goal.

    Point is, he can sign in Karpat, play from September to whenever the NHL is about to start and then sign with Edmonton (or a team that has acquired his rights) and come back.

    If he signs in the KHL (where there is interest, from accounts), there is no coming back during that term.

  74. OriginalPouzar says:

    N64: Interesting that from the player viewpoint 5 agents are pushing for the the Van+Edm solution. I don’t think the NHL can afford all in Canada, but interesting if they canat least push this from Vegas

    I understand pressure from networks, etc. but I don’t really understand why both hubs in Canada would be an issue for that?

    Taking aside any crazy hotel deal that MGM would potentially provide, the 70 cent dollar would lead to material cost savings and, frankly, what is the issue with the US regional networks (Fox, etc.) broadcasting from Canada?

    The one potential issue for the networks is Eastern based games in the Pacific time zone and game start times but what would a Canadian vs. US issue be?

    Don’t say “US president” – censored.

  75. OriginalPouzar says:

    Ancient Oilers Fan: Doesn’t the part of the section that starts ” This section does not apply…”mean that as long as he signs with the Oilers or any team they trade his rights to waivers are not required.

    That was what almost got the Flames in trouble with the RFA offer sheet but they were saved when the Avalanche matched.

    The only restriction would be there final signing date, the same as last year.

    My goodness, you are right – I didn’t read the rest of the Section – don’t tell my clients.

    Thank you.

  76. BornInAGretzkyJersey says:

    Way to hit a guy in the feels, LT. I always love your intros to holiday posts. The human condition can be a powerful reminder that we’re all in this together and while we may have vastly different backgrounds and experiences, it all boils down to the same elements.

  77. OriginalPouzar says:

    tileguy: Can you imagine what would happen if just one case pops up inside that bubble.

    I fully expect cases to pop up in the bubble – in theory it should be totally cut off from society but, in reality it won’t be air tight.

    The issue isn’t a case or two, its an outbreak and, frankly, I would think that a case or two would lead to an outbreak.

    Look how the damn flu goes through hockey teams, let alone this virus in a bubble.

    They need to make that bubble as airtight as possible.

  78. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: Could a player negotiate an out clause in a KHL deal?

    Otherwise I agree signing in Finland is better than the KHL. Though I wouldn’t go so far as to say it’s a signal he’s interested in returning.

    No, out clauses are not permitted in KHL deals – there is no transfer agreement between the NHL and KHL.

  79. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: Well we’ll see how it goes this year.

    Holland has time to work a deal and Puljujarvi may still re-sign with the Oilers (I don’t think we can read much at all into him re-signing with Karpat, if that actually happens). If there’s no path back to the NHL for him by next off season I do agree a KHL deal is likely.

    I wouldn’t say that signing back in Karpat in itself shows intent to come back to the Oilers but it very well could. There could be various reasons for signing in Liiga over the KHL – maybe he wants to stay in Finland or, perhaps, maybe he wants to keep the door open with the Oilers or maybe he just wants to keep the door open for another NHL team.

    We know what signing in the KHL would mean.

    With that said, the Oilers have tons of time (as of now) but Jesse doesn’t – these European teams start their training camps in July and their seasons in the late summer (September).

  80. OriginalPouzar says:

    Sunnyboy:
    Sam should retire, has made his stash, has a young family, be a good Dad. A stay in Bakersfield he does not need. No sentiment for playing here, NO.

    No disrespect intended but this is a pet peeve of mine.

    Why should any of us have an opinion on what Gagner “should do”?

    He is 30 years old – yes, the game has changed and his “style of play” isn’t as effective in the new game but, if he has a love for the game, and a desire to play (and put in the work) by all means go for it Sam.

    If a team is willing to give him a contract – good for Sam.

    Sam knows very well where his career is at and the potential that an NHL team may assign him to the minor leagues.

    From all accounts, he worked his ass off in Bakersfield – he is a pro.

    He also tried to reinvent his game in Bakersfield – asking to be part of the PK for example as he knows he’ll need to make changes in order to continue in the NHL.

    Same has skills that are worth a $1M NHL contract, in my opinion – I’m not sure if the Oilers are the right fit for him next season but he did have some important good games and made some important players this past season – including in the BOA.

  81. OriginalPouzar says:

    leadfarmer:
    NHL needs to bump the draft lotto this week before they make a mess of it.
    I don’t think they have the ability to pull this off.

    Everyone is thinking the bubble is to keep players from getting the virus but that’s going to be almost impossible to do.
    The key is to isolate this very very low risk population engaging in high risk activity from the general population

    There is all but zero chance they are calling off the first lottery.

  82. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: Can’t see it being in Edmonton the wife’s wouldn’t go for being cooped up ina hotel room. Vegas with its entertainment and gambling is much more attractive place to be locked up. The other hub has to be out east you would think.

    The “entertainment and gambling” would be cut off from the outside society – sure they could drink and gamble with those in the hub but its not like it would be normal vegas.

    As an aside, family is clearly and issue for the players but I don’t think its going to be carte blanche permitted to bring family in to the hub.

    My thought is that family won’t be permitted for the play-in/round robin – that’s 6-7 days and maybe not even through the 1st real round. That will be like a long road trip.

    They may structure it to permit family as the post-season goes on but i would think that the family members planing on coming in will be under strict quarantine for 10 days before they come join.

    Something like that at least.

  83. OriginalPouzar says:

    Harpers Hair: Pretty sure it will be Vancouver.

    Many 5 star hotels near the arena and lots of nearby attractions.

    I think Vancouver has a “big lead” over Edmonton as well. Covid is just as under control and the hotels are better (which is important to the players). Not to mention the weather.

    With that said, as it relates to “attractions”, I’m not sure if/how they will be a major factor.

    I mean, a bubble is a bubble – they aren’t going to be permitted to head out to Granville Island, or run along the seawall or head to the PumpJack on Davie……. unless they are shutting down places to the general public.

    That’s one big factor in favor of Vegas – shut down a hotel to the public and there is plenty to do within the hotel (even if it is cut off from the rest of vegas).

  84. OriginalPouzar says:

    frjohnk:
    Great post today LT.

    I think the two hub cities will be Toronto and Vegas.

    Toronto because it’s the media center for hockey.

    Vegas because it will give the league more exposure than any other place.

    Winner of the Cup will be the team that has the least amount of players miss games due to catching Covid.Teams that have had a few players already recovered from Covid might have a leg up on the teams that haven’t had any.

    Good think McDavid has already had it – two or three times it seems…..

  85. OriginalPouzar says:

    flyfish1168: I agree with you. I made this same comment a few days ago. Larger fan base is out east unfortunately. 2 and 3 hrs difference would not playout well for eastern viewers. Never has and that is why the voting is the way it is on western players.

    Eastern bias in voting is, seemingly, a myth – considering the winners of the trophy’s over the last number of years.

    As per Gregor at Oilers Nation:

    Over the past five seasons the PHWA has voted on 25 trophies. Each year they vote on The Hart, Lady Byng, Norris, Selke and Calder (5×5=25). And a player from the Western Conference has won 14 times while an Easteen player has won 11. Over the past decade each conference has had 25 winners. Please stop with the Eastern bias refrain. It isn’t part of the discussion today. If you say it was there during previous decades at times, that is fair, but it doesn’t exist now.

  86. N64 says:

    OriginalPouzar: I fully expect cases to pop up in the bubble – in theory it should be totally cut off from society but, in reality it won’t be air tight.

    The issue isn’t a case or two, its an outbreak and, frankly, I would think that a case or two would lead to an outbreak.

    Look how the damn flu goes through hockey teams, let alone this virus in a bubble.

    They need to make that bubble as airtight as possible.

    Bang on. But there are 2 things. As tight as possible and have as little as possible Covid outside.

  87. Chelios is a Dinosaur says:

    Anyone that wants to hang out in Vegas in August is from a different planet than I.

  88. Glovjuice says:

    SwedishPoster: One has to remember that those dying from Covid in their 20s and 30s tend to have underlying issues, not all of them but the vast majority do, and not many NHLers are either obese or have serious medical conditions.

    Don’t know enough about the different players medical history to say if there is someone out there with any actual risk factors, I’m sure there are, Zuccarello and Letang having had blood clots is a bit concerning since covid increases the risk of pulmonary embolism for example. I know some guys, Kakko for example, have type 1 diabetes but it hasn’t really showed up as a stand alone risk factor, people with type 2 are at higher risk but that’s a different thing all together. Either way i’s important that all players have a dialogue with their respective doc about their individual risk and make the call from there.

    But for this group as a whole, young elite athletes with a competitive nature and enough money to buy really fast cars I’d say they are much more likely to die or get hurt while driving than from Covid.

    Moreover, when you ‘invoke’ the “but this many die from car accidents” consideration it would be more accurate to state that “this many die from car accidents PLUS the number that die from covid”.

  89. Glovjuice says:

    OriginalPouzar: Good thing McDavid has already had it – two or three times it seems

    Or he is VERY (seemingly) susceptible to respiratory viruses. Yikes…he probably has a predisposition for excess ACE II expression as well – because Oilers.

    <

  90. JimmyV1965 says:

    OriginalPouzar: Eastern bias in voting is, seemingly, a myth – considering the winners of the trophy’s over the last number of years.

    As per Gregor at Oilers Nation:

    Over the past five seasons the PHWA has voted on 25 trophies. Each year they vote on The Hart, Lady Byng, Norris, Selke and Calder (5×5=25). And a player from the Western Conference has won 14 times while an Easteen player has won 11. Over the past decade each conference has had 25 winners. Please stop with the Eastern bias refrain. It isn’t part of the discussion today. If you say it was there during previous decades at times, that is fair, but it doesn’t exist now.

    I think it’s an Oiler thing. There’s still a lot of resentment out there for the 1OV picks. Drai could win the scoring title by 30 pts and writers like Greg Wyshynski still wouldn’t vote for him IMO. And no I don’t think Wyshynski Is a jerk. Some guys just have a bias. I hope I’m wrong, but Drai ain’t winning the Hart.

  91. OriginalPouzar says:

    Chelios is a Dinosaur:
    Anyone that wants to hang out in Vegas in August is from a different planet than I.

    I was there for a stag at the end of July back in my earlier life – it was a “heat wave” for Vegas – highs of 45 degrees and lows of 32.

    Of course, I never stepped outside – well, except to step in to our transportation to the club – not because of the heat but, because, well, that type of trip.

    Although I’m not supposed to tell “war stories”, they aren’t good for my recovery (8 years soon), I will say that walking out of the Spearmint Rhino, at 1:45pm after a “24 hour shift” in to the blazing sun and 45 degrees, that can almost sober one right up. Not quite.

    P.S. on that trip, I actually went about 8-9 hours before the rest of the crew – got there in the morning so that I could play a poker tournament that started at noon or 1. I ended up finishing second – three grand or so in my pocket before the trip even started didn’t hurt.

    P.S.S. I may have finished first but I needed to go. Didn’t expect to last like 6-7 hours and I needed to catch the limo that was heading to the airport to pick up some of our people. Trust me, that limo was worth “rushing all-in” ahead of schedule. That limo…

  92. jp says:

    JimmyV1965: The latest stats I could find for Canada are 1,922 motor vehicle fatalities in 2018. Of this total, 939 were 44 years old or younger. I would think there are far less than 100 Covid deaths in that age group, but finding numbers for that is challenging. We do know 80% of our 8,000 + Covid deaths have been in long term care centres.
    PS. What’s with all the pedestrian deaths in Mass? That number seems wildly high.

    Yeah that makes sense I guess. Canada has roughly 5X the population of Massachusetts so the road deaths are much higher. But Canada/Mass have pretty similar numbers of Covid deaths so the ratio will be very different.
    (agreed the number of younger deaths should be low out of the 8400 total in Canada, likely a little more than the 45 in Massachusetts among 7800 total Covid deaths).

    Pedestrian deaths, I don’t know. More urban maybe? Maybe the number in Canada is higher than you realize?? Not sure.

    So your original statement that I replied to said that young people are more likely to die in a car accident than of Covid. That’s been true in Canada, agreed. Less true other places like Massachusetts. And I expect the numbers are far more skewed to Covid in a place like NYC. I still feel like a huge part of the numbers even being close is that near everything shut down. Especially in Canada.

    In Massachusetts, Covid deaths in younger people have already been more than motor vehicle deaths, even with only 1.5% of the population having tested positive for Covid.

  93. OriginalPouzar says:

    JimmyV1965: I think it’s an Oiler thing. There’s still a lot of resentment out there for the 1OV picks. Drai could win the scoring title by 30 pts and writers like Greg Wyshynski still wouldn’t vote for him IMO.And no I don’t think Wyshynski Is a jerk. Some guys just have a bias. I hope I’m wrong, but Drai ain’t winning the Hart.

    Ughhh, love The Athletic but Puck Soup is almost unlistenable because half of it is Wyshynski and Lambert slamming either Drai or David Staples. Fine, they can have their opinions on Drai, biased or not, but, no matter what one thinks of Staples, its pretty immature that he’s constantly brought up and ridiculed on that podcast.

  94. jp says:

    SwedishPoster: One has to remember that those dying from Covid in their 20s and 30s tend to have underlying issues, not all of them but the vast majority do, and not many NHLers are either obese or have serious medical conditions.

    Don’t know enough about the different players medical history to say if there is someone out there with any actual risk factors, I’m sure there are, Zuccarello and Letang having had blood clots is a bit concerning since covid increases the risk of pulmonary embolism for example. I know some guys, Kakko for example, have type 1 diabetes but it hasn’t really showed up as a stand alone risk factor, people with type 2 are at higher risk but that’s a different thing all together. Either way i’s important that all players have a dialogue with their respective doc about their individual risk and make the call from there.

    But for this group as a whole, young elite athletes with a competitive nature and enough money to buy really fast cars I’d say they are much more likely to die or get hurt while driving than from Covid.

    Thanks for this. And agreed NHL players would be among the lowest risk groups out there.

    Though the original statement was “young people” more broadly. And I do think the vehicle and Covid risks being comparable still relies on Covid spread being severely curtailed by shutdowns and other measures.

  95. Harpers Hair says:

    OriginalPouzar: I think Vancouver has a “big lead” over Edmonton as well. Covid is just as under control and the hotels are better (which is important to the players).Not to mention the weather.

    With that said, as it relates to “attractions”, I’m not sure if/how they will be a major factor.

    I mean, a bubble is a bubble – they aren’t going to be permitted to head out to Granville Island, or run along the seawall or head to the PumpJack on Davie……. unless they are shutting down places to the general public.

    That’s one big factor in favor of Vegas – shut down a hotel to the public and there is plenty to do within the hotel (even if it is cut off from the rest of vegas).

    “Players will not be expected to be on full lockdown in their hotel rooms, for example, and will have activities they can do outside of games and practices.”

    https://theathletic.com/1883384/2020/06/20/guys-are-not-happy-how-the-nhls-positive-tests-will-impact-return-to-play/?source=user_shared_article

  96. jp says:

    OriginalPouzar: No, out clauses are not permitted in KHL deals – there is no transfer agreement between the NHL and KHL.

    Thanks, figured they could potentially be added to a deal if they player and team agreed on it.

    OriginalPouzar: I wouldn’t say that signing back in Karpat in itself shows intent to come back to the Oilers but it very well could. There could be various reasons for signing in Liiga over the KHL – maybe he wants to stay in Finland or, perhaps, maybe he wants to keep the door open with the Oilers or maybe he just wants to keep the door open for another NHL team.

    We know what signing in the KHL would mean.

    With that said, the Oilers have tons of time (as of now) but Jesse doesn’t – these European teams start their training camps in July and their seasons in the late summer (September).

    Agreed on all that. Whatever happens with Karpat, hopefully he returns to the Oilers when next season starts (I guess the expected late NHL start would be a very legitimate reason to sign for another season, even if he were certain on returning to the Oilers if/when the NHL season begins).

  97. OriginalPouzar says:

    Harpers Hair: “Players will not be expected to be on full lockdown in their hotel rooms, for example, and will have activities they can do outside of games and practices.”

    https://theathletic.com/1883384/2020/06/20/guys-are-not-happy-how-the-nhls-positive-tests-will-impact-return-to-play/?source=user_shared_article

    Yes, of course they will but, again, they will not be shoulder to shoulder with the general public. If the players have access to “an activity”, I’m sure it will be “bubble members only”.

    As I said, they won’t be at liberty to go walk through Stanley Park or hit Grouse Mountain or Rec Beach – unless those areas are shut off to the public.

    Its been thought that Edmonton’s proposal would include dedicated golf courses and movie theaters and stuff like that.

    There is “more to do” in Vancouver, however, unless the city is shutting places down to the public, I’m not sure it matters much.

  98. OriginalPouzar says:

    jp: Thanks, figured they could potentially be added to a deal if they player and team agreed on it.

    Agreed on all that. Whatever happens with Karpat, hopefully he returns to the Oilers when next season starts (I guess the expected late NHL start would be a very legitimate reason to sign for another season, even if he were certain on returning to the Oilers if/when the NHL season begins).

    Yes sir – I don’t see a Karpat signing as any sort of negative – lets get the kid playing.

    It could be seen as a positive in that he didn’t lock himself in to the KHL but, as we agree, it doesn’t necessarily mean that was a reason (it could though).

  99. Freddy says:

    Your story about your Dad is one of the reasons you have one of the best blogs period. Well done as always.

  100. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    – Thanks for this: Lovely story about Radisson and your Family: Bill Hajt must say hi: have any stories about him? My best friend grew up on Prince Albert, just up the road

    – P.S. : Gagner is not a NHL player, hasn’t been for a number of years, I just don’t get it: can’t skate, can’t hit, can’t score, plus minus god awful, tiny, can’t FO, can’t PK. He’s an awesome dude, I’ve met him a bunch, his wife Rachel just awesome as well.

    – but Benson v Gagner next year, not even close. No one Iknow thinks he’s an NHL player. He’s on his 5th team in 4 years, Vancouver did him a solid and lent him to Toronto AHL to be with his family. No good team should have a roster spot for him. It’s legacy Oiler stuff to say he’s coming back, just like Hall: they were good here, there best is behind. I wish him well

  101. digger50 says:

    Well, what a wonderful story to read today that touched me.

    In previous years I could pick up the phone and call my dad, but no more. Unfortunately he did not make another’s Father’s Day.

    I wish I could have said such wonderful words. I knew I should but I could not.

    My dad never missed his grand sons hockey games, not one. He managed every single game for years, no matter the weather and no matter how he was feeling. I had to go help him up stairs and into a seat. And after every game he had to wait to offer a post game word to his grandson, and it was always positive. When he finally missed a game I knew it was bad. One of the last things he said was “I wish I could have seen one more season of Ben’s hockey” and then shrugged.

    Thanks LT for letting me share this brief moment.

  102. Lowetide says:

    digger50:
    Well, what a wonderful story to read today that touched me.

    In previous years I could pick up the phone and call my dad, but no more. Unfortunately he did not make another’s Father’s Day.

    I wish I could have said such wonderful words. I knew I should but I could not.

    My dad never missed his grand sons hockey games, not one. He managed every single game for years, no matter the weather and no matter how he was feeling. I had to go help him up stairs and into a seat. And after every game he had to wait to offer a post game word to his grandson, and it was always positive. When he finally missed a game I knew it was bad. One of the last things he said was “I wish I could have seen one more season of Ben’s hockey” and then shrugged.

    Thanks LT for letting me share this brief moment.

    Thanks for sharing, Digger. Your Dad sounds like he was a gem. He raised a fine son and helped raise a fine grandson. That’s a lot.

  103. jp says:

    Kinger_Oil.redux: – P.S. : Gagner is not a NHL player, hasn’t been for a number of years, I just don’t get it: can’t skate, can’t hit, can’t score, plus minus god awful, tiny, can’t FO, can’t PK. He’s an awesome dude, I’ve met him a bunch, his wife Rachel just awesome as well.

    – but Benson v Gagner next year, not even close. No one Iknow thinks he’s an NHL player. He’s on his 5th team in 4 years, Vancouver did him a solid and lent him to Toronto AHL to be with his family. No good team should have a roster spot for him. It’s legacy Oiler stuff to say he’s coming back, just like Hall: they were good here, there best is behind. I wish him well

    Not an NHL player… weird that Gagner has the best shots for rate and worst on ice SV% of any Oiler to play 30 games over that past 2 seasons.

    Can’t score… but he had the 6th best 5 on 5 scoring rate on the team over the 2 years (Behind McDavid, Draisaitl, Yamamoto, Nuge and Kassian)

    4 teams in 4 years. Basically all because of a UFA deal which was too rich.

    Gagner vs Benson, not even close… this is Benson with 1 career NHL assist and 5 shots?

  104. OriginalPouzar says:

    Interesting tidbit in the comments Section of one of LTs articles over the weekend regarding AA with Sheahan and Archie in their one game against the Jets. I think I’ll wait until this morning’s new content to bring it once I’m back from the gym.

    Hope everyone enjoyed their weekend.

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