One Great City

by Lowetide

As fans, we can gather information over a lifetime that gives us a more accurate view of the actual hockey world. I remember when the NHL decided to give every team a week off during the season a few years ago, there was quite the brouhaha about the timing of these rest periods. Players and teams knew the value of a mid-season rest.

Ladies and gentlemen: I give you last night in Winnipeg.

THE ATHLETIC!

I’m proud to be writing for The Athletic, and pleased to be part of a great team with Daniel Nugent-Bowman and Jonathan Willis. Here is our recent work.

OILERS AFTER 43 GAMES

  • Oilers in 2015-16: 17-23-3, 37 points; goal differential -25
  • Oilers in 2016-17: 21-15-7, 49 points; goal differential +3
  • Oilers in 2017-18: 18-22-3, 39 points; goal differential -24
  • Oilers in 2018-19: 20-20-3, 43 points; goal differential -11
  • Oilers in 2019-20: 21-17-5, 47 points; goal differential -8
  • Oilers in 2020-21: 26-15-2, 54 points; goal differential +13

We’re looking at a playoff team that could finish as high as second in the North Division and is basically a lock to face the Jets in the playoffs. That’s good, because Winnipeg has trouble with Edmonton. That’s bad because Winnipeg has a goalie who can shut the door and win a series.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM APRIL

  • At home to: Calgary (Expected: 1-0-0) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • On the road to: Montreal, Ottawa, Ottawa, Calgary (Expected: 3-1-0) (Actual 2-1-1)
  • On the road to: Winnipeg (Expected 0-1-0) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • At home to: Montreal, Montreal (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Winnipeg, Winnipeg (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Calgary (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Expected April record: 7-4-0, 14 points in 11 games
  • Actual April record: 4-1-1, 9 points in 6 games

This team, more than any other since every Grant Fuhr team, has absolutely no memory. I’ve been thinking about the Calgary game for a week and the Oilers played like it never happened. That week of practice was manna from heaven.

LINES LAST NIGHT

  • Draisaitl-McDavid-Puljujarvi played 13:39, going 5-7 shots, 1-0 goals, 5-0 HDSC and 12-15 Corsi five on five. Draisaitl had a pair of assists (five on five, PP) and two shots, two takeaways and a strong night at five on five FO’s (5-2). McDavid had a five on five and power-play assist like Draisaitl and two HDSC’s. He tried the Peter Mahovlich ‘split the seams’ play several times but no sale. He’s doing that for a reason, suspect he’s perfecting a power move or making sure the opponent guards against that kind of aggression. Puljujarvi scored a huge goal, No. 10 in Game 42 meaning he is on track for 20 goals in 82 games. Puljujarvi was physical, ran over a guy, had a takeaway and caused havoc all over.
  • Kahun-Haas-Yamamoto played 7:34, 2-1 shots, 2-0 HDSC and 6-5 Corsi five on five. The line was excellent, and effective against the Scheifele (6-1 Corsi five on five) line. Kahun had a strong game, one HDSC and a fantastic pass to send Yamamoto away early. He was turning over pucks and involved in plays. Haas was effective on this line, excellent forechecking and creating chaos that both wingers could capitalize on. Yamamoto had two stunning chances on the same shift, one from a Kahun pass. He had an assist and a HDSC, dangerous for much of the game. Why are these wingers more effective with Haas than Nuge? They are either deferring to the veteran or Nuge was hurt even before last week.
  • Nygard-Shore-Kassian played 7:06, going 3-3 shots, no HDSC and 6-6 Corsi five on five. Nygard’s speed was quite noticeable, he drew a penalty, had a takeaway that led to a fine chance. Shore had one great chance and drew a penalty, led forwards in PK time (2:22 clean). Kassian had a HDSC and was more involved than we’ve seen recently. His five on five goal differential this year (8-11) isn’t terrible and I’m not certain he has more to give. People keep staring at the salary and say he should be providing more, but if you look at the birth certificate this might be his outer marker at age 30. He has 2-3-5 in 25 games, he is on a trajectory to score 15 points in 75 games. That’s Kassian, unless you run him with 97.
  • Chiasson-Khaira-Archibald played 6:33, 1-1 shots, 0-1 HDSC and 4-5 Corsi five on five. Chiasson scored on the power play, and three shots plus two PK. Khaira had another strong game, four shot attempts, two HDSC and a takeaway. Solid on PK. Archibald drew a penalty, helped on the penalty kill.

PAIRINGS AND GOALIE

  • Russell-Larsson played 14:58, going 6-4 shots, 5-1 HDSC and 13-11 Corsi five on five. Played most often with Khaira and Shore lines, both men blocked a lot of shots and Larsson made life difficult for Winnipeg forwards. The man is diabolical.
  • Nurse-Barrie played 13:12, 6-7 shots, 1-0 goals, 6-0 HDSC and 15-16 HDSC. This duo played most often with the McDavid line and had great success. Nurse had one takeaway and two blocked shots, skated miles. Barrie was 1-1-2 and is 6-31-37 in 43 games. Lordy. Can Holland walk this player? I don’t think he can afford him.
  • Jones-Bear played 9:37, going 2-2 shots, 1-0 HDSC and 3-6 Corsi for five on five. I thought both men showed well, and of course there was some chaos as one would expect. Jones had a giveaway, skated miles and was far more aggressive than we’ve seen most of this season. Bear had a great night handling the puck, passing it too. His best sequence involved eluding a forechecker in front of the Edmonton net and skating it to daylight. Bear had a fine game.
  • Mike Smith continues his ‘touch of grey’ tour with great performances across the country. He stopped 26 shots and now has a SP of .922 for the season. That’s good for No. 6 among starters. Amazing.

MATCHUPS

Connor McDavid’s line saw the Perreault-Lowry-Appletion trio most often (9:10, 3-7 shots, no goals) but then Jets’ coach Paul Maurice checked down (or up). Against the Connor-Scheifele-Dubois super group, 97’s line scored a goal (all of this is five on five) and won the shot share 4-1. As the teams will see each other in the playoffs, this game of cat and mouse should be monitored closely in the coming games.

The Haas line went 6-1 against the Scheifele line, as mentioned above it was an effective trio. Haas is the damndest hockey player, a great deal of utility (Swiss Army knife) and that line looked like they could stifle oxygen all night long.

Khaira’s line was effective in three minutes against Scheifele and friends, while Shore’s group played 90 uneventful seconds against Winnipeg’s feature line.

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hunter1909

Props to the coach for Puljujarvi playing on McDavid’s line.

Similar to Kassian is JP, but younger and full of beans to turn up every shift.

These will be excellent playoff Oilers. Or else.

leadfarmer

Ok interesting McLeod stat and the reason he’s being brought up
Even strength goals for 36
Even strength goals against 15!!!!
Thats 70%

28 points in 28 games. 1 of those is a power play point

he has won 54% face offs in last 10 games

I guess it’s hard to tell him what else he needs to do to earn a call up

jp

Yeah he’s leading the A in +/-.

Didn’t realize basically all his points were at even strength. Or that he was doing well in FO.

Cool, and thanks.

I think he’s going to play games for the Oil. Don’t think they would have called him up just to watch.

OriginalPouzar

Further to that 1 PP point stat – that entire line, Benson/McLeod/Marody have over 90% of their points at evens. They are firmly PP2 but not producing on the PP at all.

Dominant at evens similar to the Benson/Marody/Currie line of 2018/19.

GMB3

McD/Drai/Nuge off the ice at 5v5 GF%:

Chiarelli year one: 31.76%
Chiarelli year two: 54.41%
Chiarelli year three: 38.89%
Chiarelli year four: 36.62%

Holland year one: 38.20%
Holland year two: 37.04%

I think it’s time to exchange some of Holland’s signings with the prospects

via @keyantonyo on twitter

OriginalPouzar

Of course, Wilde expressly stated a few days ago he was going to go on a twitter propaganda bender to do what he can to get Holland fired.

Wilde

Doesn’t mean it isn’t true, OP! Holland could stand to make this hit job a little harder!

Last edited 27 days ago by Wilde
OriginalPouzar

Sure – that’s true.

Of course, what it does mean is that particular sets of stats the propagate the narrative will be searched for.

The one’s provided are a nuanced set of cherry-picked stats that speak to a certain game state with a certain subset of players removed. The are cherry-picked and implied as having vast important.

On the other hand, one could look at the team stats, year over year, after 43 games that LT provided at the top as being the most important of all stats – how the team actually performs on the ice.

At the end of the day, I don’t really care how they got there as long as they indeed got there.

Last edited 27 days ago by OriginalPouzar
GMB3

i don’t really see what’s cherry picked about it. It’s a fair approximation of how the team does without its best two players on the ice. When you walk into a role where you already have the toughest pieces to acquire, how you fill out the rest of the roster will largely determine how the team does.

I believe Woodguy has posted several times about the importance of a teams depth scoring(and goal share). It’s not fictional, I don’t really think it’s just a narrative. The “certain game state” accounts for roughly a third of the season. That is undeniably significant. This set of stats used to “propagate the narrative” have been talked about both here and on twitter since Taylor Hall was Edmonton’s top forward. It’s not this great injustice towards Ken Holland and Bobby Burgers. People aren’t looking this up to slander Ken Holland because they don’t like Ken Holland, they are looking it up because it’s been deemed as relevant to the state of the team.

Is the teams record most important at the end of the day? Yeah, I’d say. There are other things that correlate to sustained success and being considered an elite team too.

jp

It’s interesting. I was thinking about this the other day. On the year it’s the same as it ever was (bottom 6 getting killed).

Then I remembered Kyle Turris, and how he was bleeding so badly to start the season. But after that tough start he was removed from his role and a lot of that bleeding stopped.

I’m not certain, but I believe it was Oilers game 14 when Turris was moved to the wing. Through game 13 Turris was 3GF-12GA ON (-9).

It turns out, in the 30 games since Turris was moved out of the 3C role the Oilers are 17GF-17GA (50%GF!) with McDavid/Draisaitl/Nuge off.

Now some of that’s luck (the team is still losing the shot and scoring chance shares handily, though they did improve). But there’s not much doubt the personnel change in the bottom 6 has also had a real and positive effect on results.

Georgexs

Last year, the difference in the bottom six was Sheahan. -21 overall, -20 with Sheahan.

This year, it’s mostly Turris. -14 overall, -10 with Turris. Khaira and Archibald have won their minutes this year. That’s nice.

The elusive 3C. Maybe the answer’s finally Khaira. His game looks much better. Must be a contract year.

If the answer’s McLeod, who wins? Certainly the Oilers.

But Twitter or Holland?

Wilde

On top of that, it was also mostly Brodziak in 2018-19 (minus sixteen of minus nineteen) and Letestu in 2017-18 (minus eleven of minus twenty). Letestu was even the guy who explicitly wasn’t that kind of drag in the playoff year, the immediate previous season!

I wrote a short blog post that summer (2018) about the dangers of signing an old veteran depth centre and having their boots be gone and their checks scoring in squish minutes or whatever. People should stop calling this stuff forth from the ether like that; I personally have tried to.

jp

Well this certainly changes my reading of Georgexs’s post. And also makes what Twitter is saying more clear. Woosh.

Last edited 27 days ago by jp
jp

Yeah, if McLeod plays some games at C down the stretch and shows well he could change the conversation.

That aside (if McLeod plays wing and/or struggles) I’d expect/hope for an outside 3C addition in the off season.

Khaira has been much better and I do think he’s an answer to one of the bottom 6 spots, but there’s also some smoke and mirrors in his results (43%SF, 52%GF). Haas is useful too, but Khaira as 4C and Haas as 5C would be much more prudent I think (and quite strong depth).

In terms of Twitter or Holland, well I have no idea what Twitter is saying.

GMB3

Ryan McLeod could potentially be a boon to the team at this point. His arrow has been pointing up in a big way. I’d like to see Cooper Marody get a run of games on the wing before his ELC expires as well.

jp

McLeod has had a great season and he’s projecting like an NHLer as far as I can tell.

In terms of his impact and changing the conversation, I was thinking of next season (and Holland’s off season planning conversation), if he plays really well.

It’s conceivable he’s a contributor down the stretch this year, but I’m not expecting or counting on that.

GMB3

That’s probably another indictment of the pro scouting for the org. Yeah he was on the wrong end of a PDO heater, but that’s a swing and a miss. Much like Sheahan was.

obviously Holland signing Mike Smith has been a huge key to this season, but I think if he knew that a few months ago he’s probably not offering Markstrom the contract he did. Hockey’s so random, it makes it tough to evaluate at the best of times, let alone a pandemic season when you play only a handful of teams 56 times.

jp

Turris is definitely an indictment of someone. Presumably the scouts (though I also wonder if he wasn’t properly in shape, contributing to his struggles). Sheahan gets a pass IMO since he was signed on the eve of TC for under $1M.

JimmyV1965

Add a couple top six LW, push players down the lineup, and the bottom six takes care of itself.

winchester

Yes, perfect

should be viewed as top 9 and then good played with penalty kill skills. But just get better overall.

GMB3

I’m a pretty firm believer in that kind of roster construction too. It’s a boon if you have some top 6 types who don’t get much PP time who can PK as well (like Kailer this season).

GMB3

I think that would help, but I still think you can have better players in your bottom 6. You obviously need penalty killers but I think that guys who can outscore in depth minutes probably are good enough at hockey to learn to PK. If you want to keep guys like Khaira and Archibald on your fourth line because you believe in their PK work and it’s importance to the team, I have time for that toO.

Georgexs

Campbell is letting in soft goals. Big Save Dave is soon to be the hero TOR deserves.

OriginalPouzar

Freddie A. was back on the ice a few days ago – he’ll be in the Leaf’s net for game 1 of their 1st round series.

jp

Wonder if he can get back on track.

Only .897 on the season (44th of 50 goalies with 15+ appearances).

Only .906 over the past 2 seasons (tied with Big Save Dave for 41st of 60 goalies with 30+ appearances).

jp

Hard to believe how well Smith is playing, and how poorly a lot of the other North Div goalies are performing.

North Div playoff team goalies by SV% (this season)
Smith 23GP .922
Hellbuyck 36GP .919
Campbell 14GP .919 (not sure if that includes tonight or not)
Allen 18GP .915
Rittich 17GP .905
Koskinen 21GP .903
Price 24GP .900
Andersen 23GP .987

defmn

Andersen looking great. 😉

Crazy Pedestrian

I’m sure you meant to type “0.897” for Anderson right!? Cause if that were his actual save % (0.987) this late into the season, they might as well have just cancelled the playoffs and handed Toronto the cup. Only way to win against a goalie with that kind of record would be to run him over first.

Last edited 27 days ago by Crazy Pedestrian
jp

Haha, yes, I didn’t notice that even with defmn’s wink. Definitely .897. Too late to edit now.

leadfarmer

Hes not any better. That’s why I don’t have that team going far
that’s the problem with spending a first round pick on a rental defensive forward when you got a 4 headed goaler monster

godot10

Freddie is historically a regular season goaltender only. He was underwhelming in the post season with Anaheim, typically losing the series, or losing his starting job during the playoffs to Gibson. And he has continued the pattern in Toronto.

jp

This is a bit of a stretch even for you.

Andersen has a .916SV% (and a winning record) in the playoffs, and a .915 regular season SV% for his career.

I guess(?) Gibson took Andersen’s playoff starting job in 13-14, both of their rookie seasons? Andersen had taken over for Jonas Hiller (who started 50 games during the season), and went 3W-2L, 3.10GAA, .899SV% in the playoffs. Gibson went 2W-2L, 2.69GAA, .919SV% in the playoffs. Seems Anaheim swept the 1st round and then lost 0-4 in the 2nd (or vice versa I guess). I have no recollection, but am having a hard time seeing how Gibson would have played 4 of the last 4 games, as the starter would presumably have.

Then in 14-15, Andersen was the clear regular season starter and played all 16 playoff games, falling 1 win short of the finals (11W-5L, 2.34GAA, .913SV%). Gibson played zero playoff minutes.

In 15-16 Andersen and Gibson genuinely shared the net during the regular season but Gibson went 0-2 in the playoffs (3.08GAA, .900SV%) while Andersen went 3-2 (1.41GAA, .947SV%).

On joining Toronto, the Leafs have bowed out in the 1st round 4 straight years. Andersen had a .915 or better SV% 3 of 4 though, so it seems tough to pin the losses at all on him.

I can’t really find any evidence of what you’re saying.

And this may seem like a defence of Andersen, but it’s more a defence of reason.

Anyway, hopefully Andersen doesn’t re-gain his form. He’s been an exceptional goaltender for most of his career. This season (and to a lesser extent last regular season) being the only notable examples to the contrary.

Reja

What is the purpose of interviewing the players after the game. I can see it during the playoffs but why during the regular season. These players do not what to be at the Mic answering the same stupid questions after every game.

OriginalPouzar

I don’t think they want to be answering the questions after playoff games either – neither do the coaches. Part of the job.

TheGreatBigMac

Lol reminds me of Brian Regan’s “must win” bit.

OriginalPouzar

Canucks beat the Leafs in OT – may be the first time I am pleased with a Canucks victory……. pleased, not “happy”.

oilsnc79

Win against the universal team, anytime, anyway. Yes.

OriginalPouzar

I have much much stronger negative feelings towards the Canucks than the Leafs (only stronger for the flames).

My negative feelings towards the Leafs pale in comparison to most in this community I admit.

Reja

The shine has worn off of Campbell and Hyman’s injury didn’t look good this division is wide open.

defmn

I’m not a doctor but that looked like a season ending injury to me. And, yeah, Campbell coming back to earth.

Reja

When I seen the hi-light and I was expecting a Bryan Marchment knee. I don’t even think Elder will get suspended if he does 2 games at the most and that’s if he has a history. Hyman’s a free agent at the end of the year if his knee is blown up his stock is going way down.

jp

Are the Canucks still the hottest team in hockey?

wolf8888

Has the rubber met the road?

oilsnc79

the mighty buds fallen to the cold hard earth. The avid leaf fan, my brother, called the fookin c*** su**””$. Woohoo unhappy camper. Lol. Love it

pts2pndr

Absolutely filthy hit knee on knee by Edler on Hyman. Hyman down and on leaving the ice appeared unable to put any weight on his right leg.

defmn

It didn’t look good for Hyman for sure. Something tells me Edler is going to get a few games for that one.

pts2pndr

This is one of those situations where I wish the league would suspend the offender for the number of games the player fouled misses due to injury from the incident. Might stop predatory hits!

defmn

Yeah, but expecting justice from authority is something I gave up on a long time ago. It being a blow to Toronto might add a game or two.

hunter1909

The NHL has never been about “justice from authority” so much.

Back in the day, Gordie Howe would use the time tested “It’s better to give than receive” philosophy. At the start of the season he liked to beat someone senseless in a game he knew everyone would watch.

Howe said that let him play hockey the way he wanted to.

oilsnc79

Yes, agree fully.

€√¥£€^$

Haven’t seen the play, not to use Covid as an excuse, but this may not have been intention, but an impact of rust, fatigue, impact on reaction.

I remember not having played indoor soccer after a bit of a layoff in my early 40’s and I went to kick the ball, but kicked a guy right in his Achilles (he could not walk off the field unassisted and I felt like total shit). I’d never come close to doing that before and I was known for my quick feet.

It was just a slow reaction on my part due to being away from the game and subsequently a bit heavier-footed. Edler is an older player, so I suspect this played a big part.

defmn

There was definitely fatigue at play but it really didn’t look good either.

Redbird62

Edler had been on a long shift and was moving in on Hyman near the boards to get a piece of him. Hyman cut sharply to Edler’s right so Edler stuck his leg out to make sure he got a piece of him, and he did: full knee on knee and Hyman flipped onto the ice. Hyman missed the rest of the game and I don’t know if Hyman will be okay, since apparently that is his surgically repaired ACL from 2 years ago. While it was probably reactionary, it is gross negligence, and the suspensions need to be long enough so these guys get the message not to react that way. If you speed recklessly in a car and kill or injure someone, you are criminally negligent even if its an “accident”. If you stick your knee out in hockey, you should be severely punished.

pts2pndr

He was late for the hit so took the knee to seal the boards. Bad break for Hyman as he is UFA at the end of the year. A one legged hockey player is as useful as a three legged race horse. Hyman has been a very good player for Toronto for a while now. I don’t have much use for players that target the opponent’s head or knees.

BONE207

Lowetidians…

I’m not sure if it has been mentioned yet but it is 6 years today we won the golden ticket to draft CONNOR. EVERYONE DRINK

Pescador

what if you were going to anyway?
asking for a friend

Boil-in-the-Oil

Rinse and repeat.

OriginalPouzar

McLeod just on taxi squad for now – won’t count as one of the four allowed recalls to the roster unless he’s activated (which wouldn’t happen until he’s through quarantine and practiced up).

dustrock

Right, this could very well be a reward for hard work and great performance and he might not see an actual game. Well done by McLeod either way.

If he’s motivated, he’s the type of player who wins you playoff games in 3OT

leadfarmer

I wish they’d just leave him in Bakersfield
Hes having a great season and developing well

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

At least they didn’t waste an opportunity to piss off Benson and Marody.

OriginalPouzar

I would think that Holland and the coaching staff care more the current team and the on-ice product heading in to the playoffs than the feelings of a couple of kids.

If this does have anything to do with Nuge, McLeod is the right guy with his ability to play center, good 2-way game and PK accumen. Size and speed given current forward make-up as well.

Harpers Hair

Will you still be calling Marody and Benson kids when they’re over 25?

leadfarmer

Is Rafferty a promising rookie when he turns 30?

Side

Why not? You are a kid and I understand you are much, much older than Marody and Benson.

Reja

The ship has sailed with this organization.

OriginalPouzar

Both Benson and Marody will receive qualifying offers in the off-season and will be at Oilers camp in September – I’m quite confident of that.

pts2pndr

The experience of being with the parent team especially if he stays into the playoffs is invaluable!

leadfarmer

I’d say continuing scoring goals while a prospect is actually the invaluable piece to continuing development.

DieHard

This is great news. Let’s see what this kid can do.

JOFA

Hopefully it’s to play on the wing.

godot10

Why? McLeod is a centre. Shore is better on wing than at centre. If they needed a wing, they should have called up Lavoie…er…Benson.

You are calling the guy up to see what he can do. And the first thing you ask him to do is something other than what he was doing. Makes no sense.

#TylerWho

JOFA

The NHL is a different league. I’m hoping it doesn’t mean Nuge is out long term.

JOFA

#TylerSchremp

Reja

McLeod=Marchant. Book ‘em, Danno!

JOFA

That would be amazing 😊

pts2pndr

Bigger version and possibly with a little more offence.

godot10

That’s pretty good. Marchant was an elite 3rd line centre. Could play and survive against anyone without getting caved.

defmn

If McLeod is as good as Marchant was we have solved a position of need for the next decade.

OriginalPouzar

I was going to say, great style comparison but hopefully McLeod puts up a bit more offence but then I went and looked and Marchant was remarkedly consistent as a 15-18 and 45-40 point guy, year after year (one outlier year with 60 points).

In Marchant’s 21-year old season he had 22G and 47 points in 37 AHL games and 13G and 27 points in 45 NHL games – quite the season.

defmn

Yeah, Marchant’s offense tended to be underestimated because his speed produced so many chances that his hands couldn’t cash but he was a hell of a player. Just miscast too high on a shallow roster imo.

Primetime

McLeod call up…shot to the heart of Tyler Benson.
Does this mean Nuge out longer than thought?

Harpers Hair

Calling up a player who will have to quarantine for a week just after the team had a week off is curious asset management.

DevilsLettuce

We all thank the incredibly deep Kings organization for providing the backdrop that allowed McLeod to look so dominate.

Harpers Hair

Dominant.

ristojalo

The Canucks game was cancelled on Thursday so they didn’t know they would have a week off.

Even if they had called him up on the 10th, he wouldn’t have been eligible for the 2 games against Vancouver and Winnipeg. Today’s recall means he won’t be eligible for the next 2 games but will be ready for game on the 19th.

Last edited 27 days ago by ristojalo
OriginalPouzar

The Condors just finished 4 games in 5 nights – games management likely wanted McLeod to play in.

Ranford.85

Don’t waste your time correcting HH guys, he’s so full of shit these days, it’s too easy. Lazy troll has got no ammunition left, so he comes up with false comments to bait people. Childish and pathetic.

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

Such an enjoyable game last night. Oil played with structure against a very good team. Hope we see more of this.

Side

Watching players swarm and chase after McDavid is starting to look like racing greyhounds chasing the rabbit. I dig it.

DevilsLettuce

Nygard should be getting more looks with those wheels of his, especially against the likes of Montreal and Toronto.

His speed allows him to stick like glue to anyone he puts in his sights and he’s not scared to bring the dirty grit in with it. He’s exactly what the Habs do to the Oilers, give the guy some ice coach!

Keeper_13

I’ve been wondering about Nuge’s health for a few weeks now. I haven’t seen him favouring a body part, but he seems to young for the step back he’s taken this year (to my eye). I’m really wanting Kassian to devote himself fully to the bottom 6 player he can be, and I saw some of that last night.

Cape Breton Oilers 4EVR

Cherry always said the first home game after a long road trip was doomed. I think there might have been some of that at play last night. But full marks for Edmonton playing a superb road game last night. Totally stuck to the game plan and we’re rewarded for that. This is how Tippett’s good Dallas and Arizona teams always won games. It’s great to watch as a fan.

PS: Give Nygard a few consecutive games to show what he can add.

OriginalPouzar

Is there any way that Adam Larsson isn’t on this team next season?

I can’t imagine that Tippett doesn’t value him just as much as we (I) do and, until Samorukov develops, there is no skill-set replacement (and Sammy is a left shot, notwithstanding playing the right side quite a bit in Europe).

I can’t imagine Holland not also valuing Larsson and wanting to bring him back.

There has also been verbal that Larsson does want to stay and, given that, i don’t imagine he “digs in” for an unreasonable contract, AAV or term.

I’d like to keep it at $4M or under and I think that’s feasible.

Imagine a healthy/healthier Klefbom on his left side (as opposed to Russell) and with another top 4 pairing that this ever better version of Nurse

Nurse/[Bear]
Klefbom/Larsson

YES PLEASE!

Re-Sign this man!

nathen99

I dare say he is the most important free agent signing love that top four

JimmyV1965

If he’s not resigned it’s because of concern with his back. You can say it’s not true until your blue in the face, but he’s been out twice because of back issues.

Bling

Total:

Patrick Laine (36 GP): 10G 7A 17P -20 (!)
Matt Tkachuk (44 GP): 10G 20A 30P +4
Jesse Puljujarvi (42 GP): 10G 6A16P -1

EV GF/xGF%

Laine: 35 (!), 39 (!)
Tkachuk: 54, 51
Puljujarvi: 49, 56

**Puljujarvi w/o Turris: 51, 56.

Even strength (G, Primary A, Secondary A):

Laine: 4, 3, 2
Tkachuk: 6, 6, 4
Puljujarvi: 7, 2, 2

PP TOI/GP:

Laine: 2:15
Tkachuk: 3:20
Puljujarvi: 1:14

It goes without saying, I am bullish on Puljujarvi. What is scary is that I think there is more.

Pescador

Awesome, thanks Bling
Yes there is more.
This season, Puljujarvi has been a treat
Next season will be the reward

Scungilli Slushy

On draft day many said Laine starts better, JP ends up the better player overall.

Like on another draft day when they had to choose between Hall and Seguin.

Many said (including me) you take the RE centre over a winger, all things being a toss up. And Hall’s style, I worried he wouldn’t stay healthy.

Neither has completely, Hall has been the worse for wear out of the two, but I’d far rather have Seguin now than Hall.

Cassandra

This is a good example of the irrational way people view Hall.

You think the guy who is healthy and playing well is the greater injury risk than the guy who has missed the entire season with an injury after being a shell of himself in the previous playoffs.

The Bruins are 3-0 since they acquired Hall, stomping the Islanders twice and then the Capitols today.

Scungilli Slushy

This is a good example of irrational over reactions by people who don’t read fully and think through other’s comments and only want to drive their own narrative.

How did you surmise my opinion of Hall from my comment?

Where did I say Hall isn’t a good player?

Unnecessarily inflammatory IMO.

JimmyV1965

IMO all of these players are complementary wingers. None of them drive offence. Their production is dependent on linemates. No slight to JP, but I suspect Laine’s production would be a teeny tiny better playing with McDavid and/or Drai.

I think Laine is now getting the Hall treatment. He was expected to produce more than he really is capable of doing. Even more than Tkachuk and JP, he needs a very good centre to make a meaningful impact.

Other than the handful of superstars in the NHL, most players are streaky and inconsistent. Their numbers fluctuate within any given season and year to year. See RNH for reference.

OriginalPouzar

Lets not forget one very important, and heartening, detail – Matt Tkachuk needs to be qualified at $9M after next season (or he becomes a UFA).

Laine at $7.5M, after this season.

JimmyV1965

That will be a HUGE problem for the Flames. They can’t give him $9 mill and they can’t let him walk.

winchester

Despite all the analysis, I don’t see Holland parting with Barrie. I think he keeps him.

Bouchard is more likely moved for a forward. Broberg becomes the rookie on deck.

Primetime

I would think it’s more likely Larsson or Bear goes if that’s the case (Bear traded for a forward).

nathen99

No chance they trade Bouchard for a forward ,we need all our right defence except for barrie, the 3.5 million savings by not signing barrie goes either goaltending or 3c.imo

OriginalPouzar

I also can’t imagine that Bouchard is traded – the Oilers have not had a high potential offensive producer like this guy for decades.

I am not on board with re-signing Barrie (at any sort of raise over his current contract and, of course, its not reasonable to keep him at that price) but, unfortunately, I do agree that Holland may very well bring him back.

I don’t think its the right allocation of cap resources but, at the same time, even if Holland does go that route, I think he will see the value of Bouchard and his ELC for two more years and then his elite offensive potential.

winchester

Wait

they do have an offensive producer, his name is Barrie.

Im not saying what may be the right thing, justvreading the tea leaves. Holland has an excellent point producer in Barrie and an excellent shut down guy in Larson.

His third guy needs to be an all rounder and that is Bear.

I dont think they are high on Bouchard.

They still have a lot a lot of years left in the present d men. I’m assuming Klefbom back.
And Laggeson escapes the Kraken.

They need a rookie on deck such as Sammy or Broberg, and a couple depth options. Maybe Kulikov or Koekoek sticks around.

Hard to be sure what they are thinking.

OriginalPouzar

Yes, Barrie is indeed a point producer but he’s going to be 30 and going to be expensive, for term.

Given overall organizational depth at the various positions, I posit that $5.5M can better be spent in other places in the lineup.

No, I don’t posit that Bouchard will produce 55 points next season but I do think he’ll be able to help fill the role that Barrie plays on the team (as a tandem with others).

winchester

Bouchard may or may not improve the offense but Likely prove to be a liability defensively as he starts his career.

The team team is worse.

Yet the money saved on Barrie can be used to improve the forward group. The team is better overall.

Nurse and Klefbom will fill in for Barrie, not Bouchard.

im just looking at the lack of Bouchard playing this year. Despite Holland’s words, I’m not convinced Bouchard is viewed as we might think.

I post simply as a counterview.

pts2pndr

We wouldn’t be able to sign Barrie for 3.5 his contract depending on term will start with a five.

nathen99

The 3.5 million is savings as barrie would be 5 million at least Bouchard salary 1.5 million. Plus if klefbom back power play is fine barrie bad allocation of funds.

winchester

Powerplsy is fine with a Barrie, Nurse, Klefbom or Bear. This means defence is shaping up.

I really want to see Bouchard, but his offensive skills are already present while I think coach doubts his defensive abilities.

flyfish1168

Bouch is the understudy, watching and learning what Barries do well and what not to do. Bouch will be kept which will help the CAP versus trading him. With the extra room, we can go shopping without giving up assets. Wit ha flat CAP for the next few years Holland and UFA players will have very little room to move if they want to sign any contract.

pts2pndr

They don’t even play the same side. Lots of luck getting a top six winger for a still unproven right D.

Pescador

Whaler Slamamoto

 Reply to  Pescador
 April 18, 2021 12:16 pm

Even Mcdavid had rust. That’s a rare sight!
*******
Just so you know 77% of my upvotes on your comments are because of your sick nic.
I believe in being honest with people

Whaler Slamamoto

Lol thank you. Long time lurker here. Despite HH’s best efforts, I’ve stuck around.

Bling

We’ve been seeing it all season, but Puljujarvi is really getting it.

Last night: Strips the puck from Schiefele in the offensive zone to keep possession alive. Draisaitl to McDavid, and 97 makes an absolutely sick pass out front while being double-teamed.

What was so cool about this play was that Puljujarvi actually skated to the right side of the net with Kyle Connor, as if he were heading behind the net. Put on the brakes, and faded to the soft ice back in front of the net.

That play doesn’t happen if Puljujarvi stays stationary in front of the net or if he sets up higher out. Puljujarvi moving towards the back of the net gets Kyle Connor moving there as well.

JP can score a lot of goals if he continues to find the soft ice in the hard areas like that.

OriginalPouzar

Jesse was working his way around the slot for a good 10-15 seconds trying to find the “soft space” – he did and was rewarded.

Lets not forget, earlier in the shift, he made a plus defensive play to thwart a high danger shot.

prefonmich

Has anyone looked at the schedule differences amongst playoff teams’ schedules in the North? I worry that the Oilers are going to be coming into the playoffs as the tired team that got spanked by the Flames last week rather than the fresh team that beat the Jets last night. I don’t think that will be the case for the Leafs and Jets. Possibly for Montreal and Edmonton though..

pts2pndr

Five of those are with the out of sick bay Canucks.

Cahoon

Great song for the title of this blog! I’ve never been to Winnipeg but the sentiment of the song is universal for a city that you love despite its flaws. I’m going to have another listen, thanks for that.

Cahoon

I just thought after I posted this, John K. Samson (the vocalist for the Weakerthans) is a storyteller in a similar vein to you Lowetide, and if you want and emotional example of that, his solo song “requests” I think does that well.

Last edited 27 days ago by Cahoon
Indy

The Weakerthans would always bring me back round to Wilco and Son Volt, two of my all time fav front men…Tweedy and Farrar…Farrar in particular….

Just love the confident game that the Oil play against the Jets…solid…keep it up boys!

One Great City…..man…Thanks LT

Last edited 27 days ago by Indy
defmn

Can Holland walk this player (Barrie)? I don’t think he can afford him.

Whether or not he can afford him, I think, depends on a few things including what we mean by ‘afford’. To me it isn’t just the money (which I think the team can afford) but it also means the cost to Bouchard, Bear and/or Larsson given that there are only three spots & none of these four are ‘7th dman’ material.

There also seems to be some angst regarding Nurse’s affordability for his next contract a year down the road. Klef’s health adds another layer of uncertainty since he has two more years after this one.

Assuming that the cap remains at $81.5 for the next few years lets try some numbers to see how this could work.

I put a cap on Barrie ($5.5), Hopkins (6.2)& Larsson (4.5) as the big ticket UFA’s coming up because to me it makes no sense to talk about affordability unless you have a budget in mind. I can tweak a couple hundred thousand if necessary as will be seen but this is what works for the team & imo should work for the players IF they want to stay. That is always a consideration and something we never really know.

UFA ($5.5) – McDavid ($12.5) – Puljujarvi ($1.175) =$19.175
Nuge ($6.25) – Draisaitl ($8.5) – Yamomoto ($2) = $16.75
Turris ($1.65) – Khaira ($1.2) – Kassian ($3.2) = $6.05
McLeod ($834,167 ) – Haas ($1.1) – Archibald ($1.5) =$3,434,167

UFA or prospect (.8) – Kahun $1.1

14 forwards = $47,309,167

Nurse ($5.6) – Barrie ($5.5) = $11.1
Klefbom ($4.167 – Larsson ($4.5) = $8.667
KRussell ($1.25) – Bouchard ($863,333) = $2.,113,333

??? – $.8

Dman Total = $22,680,333

Stalock ($.785) – Koskinen ($4.5) = $5.285

Buyouts – Sekera, Neal
Retained – Lucic
Overage from last year
$4,507,993

Grand Total – $79,782,493

To be clear this is not what I would necessarily do. Any of the players listed at $1.65 or less (so as to include Turris) are simply listed because they currently occupy a spot on the roster. Some have contracts that could be sent to Bakersfield and some are FA’s who could be allowed to walk. All of them are replaceable in some sense without affecting the dollars. I also happen to think that Koskinen’s days with this club are numbered but have left him on the roster simply because his is a more difficult disposition.

This budget leaves about $2 million in leeway and delivers a 23 man roster.

For those who are worried about Nurse’s need for a new contract I would say that no GM has ever won a Stanley worrying about the future. There is always a way.

This also says nothing about the prudence of re-signing Nuge, Barrie or Larsson. That is a different and separate discussion. I just think it is important to look at the numbers and decide if they are reasonable. If they are then it is possible to re-sign all three and still fill the 1LW spot as well as upgrade the 3C.

Holland can afford to sign Barrie if Barrie wants to stay.

Last edited 27 days ago by defmn
who

I think your projections are reasonable and I agree, the Oilers can afford to sign Barrie.
But that doesn’t mean they should.
If you can pick 2 of; Barrie at 5.5, Larsson at 4.2 and Bear at 2, I’m picking Larsson and Bear all day long. Spend the extra money at forward, or in goal.
Or just sit on the extra cap space and let the right deal come to you. There’s going to be lots of cap strapped teams looking to dump useful players in the next few years. Look how Sakic acquired Toews last summer. Wouldn’t it be nice to be in a position to do something like that.

defmn

Yeah. As I mentioned in the post it wasn’t meant as an argument for signing those three so much as trying to put to rest the argument that the team cannot afford to do it.

I like what Barrie brings to the team but I do understand others have a different perspective. I think Holland has to weigh what he can get in return for Bear before making his final decision. Trading young top 4 RDM is not something to be done lightly but it has been so long since this team has been in a position to even consider it I really don’t know what Bear might be worth in this expansion summer.

pts2pndr

What was the term given to Barrie? Also all teams carry 7 D not 6. Also while working for next year how do you propose we afford the team when Nurse Yamamoto and JP need raises. If you do one year contract for Barrie it could work. A small D that loses a step on an anchor contract is folly!

defmn

I have a 7th dman listed at $800,000. Who that is I don’t know. Could be internal or FA.

I gave Yamomoto a raise so he should be good for 2 years. Koskinen is done in one more year. I left $2 M in reserve in my estimates.

And I will repeat myself. No GM ever won a Stanley worrying about the cap 2 years down the road.

You don’t want Barrie? I get that. My post simply pointed out that he is affordable.

And posting that Barrie will lose a step because he is 30 does not mean he will lose a step because he is 30.

Next thing you know people will be telling me that a 39 year old goalies will sink the season. 😉

Wilde

I ran an armchair GM on CapFriendly the other day and came up with this exactly yeah. It’d be a disaster if it happened, another 12th-18th finish unless goaltending and ELCs pop off.

e: a=an

Last edited 27 days ago by Wilde
defmn

Goaltending is a position that does not currently have an answer for the Oilers. I think I was one of very few who felt that Smith would not be a total disaster for the Oilers this year but every athlete hits his best before date sooner or later. I wouldn’t be totally shocked if Koskinen is bought out or traded with retention this summer either. I’ll be very surprised to see Smith back in spite of his season this year.

I think the decision to keep Barrie or not hinges on money & what they think of Bear & Bouchard. There are a lot of moving parts on defence this summer. Klef’s health being one of the big unknowns. I am pretty sure both Draisaitl & McDavid love playing with Barrie.

Last edited 27 days ago by defmn
jp

I could definitely also see Koskinen bought out or traded.

I disagree on Smith though. I think he’s earned himself another contract. He saved the season again, so to speak. Tippett and the team seem to value him tremendously.

As I said the other day, I don’t *think* Holland will bring Smith back as the starter, but I think it’s probable he’s the backup or 1B to an outside addition.

defmn

Smith has earned himself another contract. I just don’t think it will be with the Oilers. Of course I didn’t think he would be back this year either although it seems to me that you and I were the only ones that weren’t predicting total disaster when he was signed.

jp

Yeah, I thought there was a decent chance of disaster, just not total certainty of such 🙂

In terms of him returning another time, we’ll obviously have to wait and see. I just feel like he should be available for backup type money (maybe not though), and Tippett clearly loves the guy. Seems like the team thinks he brings a lot in the room too.

If he were willing to sign for $2M-ish I’d be cool with it. That type of money wouldn’t really hamper a bringing in a longer term solution.

defmn

Goalies. Who the heck knows what to expect from one year to the next. I just think that having got lucky this year with Smith we would be pushing it to go all in again.

I think Stalock is pencilled in for the back up role next season. It looks to me like Koskinen is vulnerable if Holland can find a taker with retention.

jp

Yeah I definitely wouldn’t be comfortable going into next season with a Smith/Stalock tandem (though I did throw it out there the other day as within the realm of possibility). Definitely wouldn’t want to go all in with Smith again though, agreed.

Stalock definitely may be the backup next year, but I also think the team would prefer Smith back assuming the price is right. Of course he may not be interested if Holland brings in an established starter. And with the year he’s had he may be able to command more money and a larger role with another team.

Definitely agree Koskinen is vulnerable though. Of the 3, IMO Smith is the likeliest to be an Oiler goalie next season, Koskinen the least.

OriginalPouzar

Interesting position that Smith, without a contract, is the likeliest to be back and Koskinen with a negative value contract that can’t be move at par, is the least likeliest. I understand the thinking though.

I would like to add, as good as Smith has been this year, I would nice increase his cap hit or bonus structure from what he is on now – in particular up front salary. If he demands more then I’d move on for sure, too much risk.

jp

Yeah, just trying to read the tea leaves.

Holland, Tippett, the team, don’t seem to believe in Koskinen (not that they’re wrong). And his contract is an impediment, so I think Holland will get rid of it one way or the other.

Smith, on the other hand, has been something of a savior. And has been legitimately good for a long stretch now (one playoff start notwithstanding). The intangibles do seem to matter as well, for the team and the coach at least.

I think Holland will have to give him a bit of a bump based on this season (my thought was $2M + 500k bonues), but I definitely agree you don’t break the bank for Smith, or put all your eggs in that basket.

OriginalPouzar

What type of trade would one forsee for Koskinen? I don’t imagine that contract can be traded clean. Could it be traded for a late pick with $1M retained?

As far as the last statement, I would tend to agree although, of course, Smith was brought back as the 1B this year (I believe) and simply took the starter’s position, on merit.

jp

Yeah I don’t see a team just taking on his salary straight. His numbers are still fine though, it’s not like he’s a massive boat anchor of a contract from the outside.

A below average SV% this year – 34th/50 goalies with 15+GP (at .903)
But above average if you include this and last season – 21st/53 goalies with 35+GP (at .912).

So quite possibly a later pick + $1M or $1.5M retained.

Or for a slightly cheaper but still useful forward or Dman. I haven’t looked for possibilities, but something like Cogliano at $3M going into this season.

Or just a straight buyout ($1.5M X 2).

defmn

I think Holland has to be prepared to eat even more than that to move Koski. And I don’t think he is terrible. I just don’t think he can carry this team to playoff success.

OriginalPouzar

As a buyout $1.5M X 2, obviously retaining $1.5M would be the better option. Now, at $2.5M X 1, that contract could maybe be moved without taking cap back – maybe if they added a Rasanen or Safin level prospect?

As far as Smith, I can’t really say I’d be OK with bringing him back quite yet. I mean he is 39. At the same, I have to acknowledge his plus play dates back to the last portion of last season as well.

Its also not just his “counting stats” but his win/loss record and I am now truly on board with him helping the team move the puck out and altering the way the opposition dumps and forechecks.

Last year he made far too many high risk plays and big mistakes – this year, he hasn’t tried to be overly aggressive too often and I can think if only a couple big mistakes and one gimee goal due to puckhandling.

defmn

Pretty much how I see it as well except I think the Smith experience should be acknowledged as having turned out better than could be expected and signing him again is pushing our luck.

I mean we all know that the cliff is getting close & I don’t want to waste Draisaitl or McDavid’s prime years betting when that will happen.

DieHard

Move Leon back to 1L. Move UFA to 2C. Add 1M to UFA. take 1M from Nuge.

OriginalPouzar

While I’m sure it would take $5.5M to sign Barrie, I sure as heck hope they don’t do that and I do think they can get Larsson less than $4.5.

jp

He has 2-3-5 in 25 games, he is on a trajectory to score 15 points in 75 games. That’s Kassian, unless you run him with 97.

For his career through 2017-18 (prior to McDavid minutes) Kaddish scored 0.28 EV points per game. 21 points per 75 GP.

I think we can expect a *little* more than 5 points in 25 games.

jp

Yes, definitely fair to project some age related decline.

Just wanted to point out that he has been a bit better scorer than that historically.

Also pushing back a bit on the narrative by many (not necessarily you) that Kassian is/has been a 4th line scorer without McDavid.

For his career pre-McDavid his 5v5 P/60 is about 1.50 (1.49 iirc). That, and 21 even strength points in a season, are solidly mid-3rd line scoring rates. Maybe he’s got some more 20+ point seasons in him, maybe not.

GordieHoweHatTrick

Haas
small sample size… BUT
there was uncertainty he could be a bottom 6 centre
he shows reasonably well up in the top 6
i was scared shitless of him having to play 2C. Confused why Drai wouldn’t automatically be 2C with nuge out
it will be interesting to see what will happen if he continues to get some reps in the top 6

Reja

Why pay a 2C 6.5 million when you get him for 1 million lines 2-3-4 play the trap and Leon and Mcdavid do their thing. Next Year Holloway Lavoie and McLeod will all be pushing hard for a a million a year. Buy out koshinen and spend your money on a real goaltender.

Reja

Here comes McLeod right on cue he’s going to steal somebody’s lunch money for under a million.

OriginalPouzar

For now, it will probably be Patrick Russell’s lunch money.

I’m not certain he’ll be activated to the main roster right out of quarantine, if at all.

pts2pndr

They did not bring him up to sit! That is definitely not Holland’s MO. I am of the belief bringing him up was due in some part to the Nuge injury wether in whole or in part.

Crazy Pedestrian

As good as Nurse has been this season, unless he pulls out a bunch of multi-point games, I don’t think he will come close to being nominated for the Norris. Looking at the Defence around the league, my bets are on Carlson, Makar, Hedman, and Adam Fox. Barrie might come close, but not sure if the NHL brass will give him any real looks.

Adam Fox is really turning heads. 2nd NHL year and killing it. FLames looking like idiots for letting him go! (I know he wasn’t signing with them, but it just feels so good to type that!)
The rangers are looking pretty deadly for an non-playoff team. (And they’ve been playing with 4 D-men in their ELC!) That team is going to be the stuff of other teams nightmares…
Makar has only played 31 games, but has 31 points and is +19. point-per-game player and looking elite doing it. Colorado really is the team to beat this year.

Anyhow, the Oilers are doing great even with a mostly posh-tosh group of forwards after McDavid and Drai. Practically guaranteed a playoff spot with 13 games to go. Hopefully they pull out all the stops in the playoffs and win lord Stanley’s cup!

GO OILERS GO!

Last edited 27 days ago by Crazy Pedestrian
OriginalPouzar

I don’t think anyone really thinks that Nurse will be in the top 3 after the voting (that’s the “nominations”, the top 3) but I do think that he will get some votes – each of the voters places their top 5 and I’m fairly confident some ballots will have Nurse’s name on there.

Whaler Slamamoto

Solid game, but to get excited about this win would be similar to doom and gloom after the last flames beating we took. 3rd game in 4 nights in both scenarios.

*Legs have left the chat*

Amazing season going here.

fishman

Agreed!. Schedule impacting game results more so this year than in any previous seasons. Great Oiler win but we were the fresh team last night!

Pescador

Tired Jets team probably a bigger factor than we are acknowledging.
As I’m sure the Flames fans were enjoying their coffee last Sunday morning.
Rest vs. Rust is also a legit concern.
Got to give some credit to Tippett for having his team ready to go.
Or at least I do

Whaler Slamamoto

Even Mcdavid had rust. That’s a rare sight!

Cassandra

Scheifele, Connors, Wheeler get outscored at even strength, despite having the best, or close to the best, goalie in the league.

If you believe the game isn’t just about scoring, they are the poster children for overated offensive first players.

Ehlers, on the other hand, is great.

jtblack

Is this opinion or back by stats?

Cassandra

How can the claim that certain players get outscored at even strength be an opinion?

It can be correct or incorrect, but it cannot be an opinion.

Eh Team

Scheifele is a horrible defensive player. Connor is even worse. And Wheeler maybe the worst of the three. He’s strictly a power play guy now.

And throw in the Jets tire fire defense.

Wilde

Before the shot even went off I was laughing so hard when Kyle Connor left his post to 2-on-1 McDavid behind the net as if 97 never watched a minute of Sidney Crosby playing hockey.

Literally challenging the best player on earth to make a routine punish for 30-50% of a goal, with the upside the other way of a possible soft possession-change behind the net.

Pescador

Honestly, there is little else that I find more maddening than the unnecessary double team defensive check down to a non-HD area of the ice.
Be it in the corner or behind the net, the puck carrier or possessor is not scoring from there. DAMMIT!
Oilers in bygone years used to look as if they were coached to do it.
It warms the cockles to see the Oilers on the other end of this play.
That & check the stick

Georgexs

Huh, didn’t know those guys don’t win (or lose) their 5v5 minutes. WPG may be more vulnerable than I thought, and I already thought they were vulnerable. Thx.

Elgin R

Speed kills – as we were all told when learning to drive. It showed last night and Tippet / Holland need to keep this going. Unless there are injuries, no need to play the slow vets. Shore is a decent winger but did not do well as a center. Hope RNH is back soon. Don’t know what tip will do with the lines but can’t play 29 over 25 TOI every night.

Bryan

In this vein I don’t understand the reluctance to bring up McLeod to inject more skill and speed into the lineup. The week off would have been a perfect time to do that. Maybe Holland is just afraid that Tip won’t play hm.

Gamma Cassiopeiae

This management team has made clear how much they value practice. Their AHL team plays fewer games than others, allowing for more practice time. Their NHL 1B/1A goalie has said that he need practice time to bring his A-game (or is it B-game?).

Maybe with the nutty schedule they just can’t work players into the games properly because there’s no practice time. They’re playing all the time…except during unscheduled COVID19 breaks. How can they bring McLeod onto this team and be confident he’s ready and knows all the NHL systems?

OriginalPouzar

The Condors do not play less games generally. There are only 4 teams in the entire AHL that have played more games.

They also have a back-heavy schedule this season which was done intently given they were going to be getting players added to the lineup through the season (Kemp, Lavoie, Kesslring, Berglund, Broberg potentially, Holloway potentially).

OriginalPouzar

I don’t think that HOlland is afraid of Tip not playing him – from Holland’s verbal, it sounds like Holland would agree with Tip not playing him more than 8-10 minutes per game.

The one “old school” theory that these guys seems to have that I don’t really like is the requirement that a graduating/developing prospect need to start in the bottom 6 notwithstanding skill set.

This would apply mostly to Benson in this case as he has a top 6 skill set.

McLeod may be able to play some top 6 in time but he also has a skill set that can help the bottom 6.

At the same time, there is zero thought of giving the player time on special teams so that leads to 8-10 minutes per night if they are true 4th line.

Reja

That was as near a perfect game that the Oilers have played in years everybody was on including the waterboy.

Victoria Oil

Defensively, the Oil were uber-impressive. Jets were rarely a threat to score other than Schiefele”s breakaway after 3 Oilers were caught on a shorthanded chance.

Gamma Cassiopeiae

Looks to me like Larsson is playing too much (or there is a typo).

OriginalPouzar

Larsson led the team in 5 on 5 TOI last night (just over 20 minutes).

Given how well he is playing, I think his usage is just fine.

He has shown zero sign of requiring any “load management” and that was the first game in a week.

Wolfpack

Gamma was tongue-in-cheek referring to the fact that Larsson was listed as the partner for both Russell and Nurse in LT’s summary. Obviously should have been Barrie in the second case.

OriginalPouzar

Very well – missed that – whoooooosh….

Woodguy v2.0

Other 3 NHL Divisions Updated:

The Green Solution West Division standings April 18th using points percentage shown as points over/under fake Bettman .500

COL +21
VGK +19
MIN +14
STL +1
ARI 0
SJS -4
LAK -4
ANA -10

The Hemptender Central Division standings April 18th using points percentage shown as points over/under fake Bettman .500

CAR +21
TBY +16
FLA +16
DAL +3
NSH +3
CHI +2
CBJ -7
DET -8

The Jungle Girls Delivery East Division standings April 18th using points percentage shown as points over/under fake Bettman .500

WSH +17
PIT +15
NYI +14
BOS +12
NYR +6
PHI +2
NJD -9
BUF -15

GordieHoweHatTrick

Thanks!
other than the eastern division, there are three clear leaders in each division

Keeper_13

Stick-tap

Paddy Morans Jockstrap

Rock-Paper-Scissors North Division

TOR beats EDM who beats WPG who beats TOR…….

Woodguy v2.0

The Twin Drive-In North Division standings April 18th using points percentage shown as points over/under fake Bettman .500

TOR +16
WPG +12
EDM +11
MTL + 5
VAN -2
CGY -3
OTT -11

Shane

Thanks for this WG as always.

The Twin Drive In was my first experience going to a movie. Jurassic Park!

BONE207

For me it was Swedish Stewardesses

Reg Dunlop

Swedish Fly Girls maybe? I saw that one in high school, 1976 at the Belmont drive in.

Woodguy v2.0

EDM Goal Share after 43 games (26-15-2)

Even strength (5v5,4v4,3v3)
97 w/o 29 (20-26)-43%
29 w/o 97 (20-14)-59%
97 & 29 On (27-10)-73%
Turris (7-17)-29%
Other (17-24)-41%
Net EV 0

Special Teams:39-27
Net ST +12

Empty Net:7-2
Net EN +5

SO/PS 0-0
Net SO/PS 0

Net Goal Diff +17

jtblack

He stopped 26 shots and now has a SP of .922 for the season. “

biggest surprise for me. SMITH has been excellent and I expected league average or slightly worse.

Brantford Boy

Watching Larsson is like watching a construction crew begin a job… demolish everything.

Agree with LT here, Nygard and Hass both had a good to great evening.

Believe it’s a Grateful Dead Sunday… probably start with One From The Vault.

buck yoakam

thats so funny…we were just revisiting workingman’s dead yesterday

stephen sheps

I’ve been pretty much listening to nothing but the dead for the last few months. Fell down the rabbit hole of all the live records available on Spotify to try and determine exactly what year was their best year. I still don’t know what’s the best year, but unlike many I know I don’t much care for the late 80s era and find the post spring ’90 tours bordering on unlistenable.

@buck – one of the Dick’s Picks live sets (vol. 8) is a show from the same era as Workingman’s Dead. First set is almost fully unplugged, test-driving a bunch of tunes from that one before they were released. It’s a real gem and is on both Spotify and Apple Music if you have access to either

Oilman99

I don’t know why it took them so long to put Nygard back in the line up. His speed and tenacity are what separates him from Turris and most of the other taxi squad.

GordieHoweHatTrick

Totally

OriginalPouzar

Looking ahead, the Oilers and Condors’ schedules are staggered (Condors play in Henderson on Tues and Thurs) – love it – the wife, not so much.

flyfish1168

Missed the game but good thing you can stream it on Sportsnet website after. Good win by our Oilers. Rounding into playoff form with nice defensive awareness and neutral zone setup

OriginalPouzar

I thought the top 6 wingers were fire last night.

Don’t need to speed about Drai and Yamo seemed more “refreshed”.

My comment was mainly made to commend both Jesse and Kahun.

Jesse did what Jesse does, at both ends of the rink, but Kahun did as well, and he doesn’t always do that.

Kahun made a couple wonderful passes and was unlucky not to get an apple. More than anything, he made a couple important defensive plays on the backcheck and with an active stick. That Kahun can play in my top 6 each and every day.

OriginalPouzar

I guess OP went to sleep.

Condors win 5-1.

927 fans in attendance.

Skinner with the W.

McLeod was 1st star, 2G-1A +3 (now 28-14-14-28 and leads the league at +23)

Kesselring was 2nd star 2A +2 (his first 2 pro points, now 10-0-2-2)

Stanton 3rd star 2A +2

Lavoie also 1G-1A +1 (now 8-4-3-7)

Marody with 1A, Benson held off the score sheet. They are 2nd and 3rd in +/- behind McLeod. Gildon is 4th.

You are correct, I did ineed go to sleep – I mean, the game started at 9…. I’m old.

As I mentioned last night, McLeod’s first goal last night was a beauty individual effort and Cracknell’s goal was primarily made by a great pass by Lavoie back to Kesselring.

McLeod’s assist was on the 200 foot empty netter by Lavoie and Benson started the play on McLeod’s second goal even though he didn’t get an apple – the 3rd apple if you may.

Jaxon

Hey OP. What do you know about Gildon and why he is on the team? That is, why is a 21 year old prospect on loan from the Panthers taking up development space on the Condors?

defmn

Not OP but I think it is because so many of the Oiler’s defensive prospects were in Europe so they agreed to take him.

OriginalPouzar

The Charlotte Checkers opted out of the AHL season so teams have taken on some of their players on loan – mostly Syracuse.

Gildon was a god-send earlier in the season when there was only 1 Condor d-man even on an NHL contract (Lennstrom).

Now, with the arrival of Kemp and Kesselring (and Berglund on the way) its a big crowded but, at the same time, team success is important and helps development and Gildon is the team’s top d-man.

Kaldis and Jaks are the two that have been sitting (not real prospects).

Yes, Gildon takes PP1 time but, really, its only Lennstrom that warrants PP time and he’s not really a PP guy.

Jaxon

Thanks.

N64

Oil have had a bad record on the nights Bruce does the CoH player grades. Good thing that Bruce was working on lots of rest last night.

Last edited 27 days ago by N64
prefonmich

Hopefully Bruce won’t be grading any playoff games!