“Ladies and gentlemen, the General Manager has turned on the Fasten Seat Belt sign. If you haven’t already done so, please stow your ulcer drugs and demon alcohol underneath the seat in front of you or in an overhead bin. Please take your seat and fasten your seat belt, and take one giant breath. And also make sure your seat back and folding trays are in their full upright position. Check horizon in case of falling anvils.
If you are seated next to an emergency in waiting, please read carefully the special instructions card located by your seat and memorize the number for Bakersfield’s front desk. If you do not wish to perform the “are you sure that’s a good idea?” function described in the event of an emergency, please ask a flight attendant to reseat you.
We remind you that this is a non-weeping flight. Rage is prohibited on the entire aircraft, including the lavatories. Tampering with, disabling or destroying the plan is prohibited by law. Also we all have regrets and no need to hear yours, please and thanks.
If you have any questions about our flight today, please don’t hesitate to ask one of our flight attendants, who can be seen now disembarking the aircraft. Thank you.”
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’s the latest!
- New Lowetide: Warren Foegele acquisition possible key to improving the Oilers third line
- New DNB: Ethan Bear on being traded, his time with the Oilers
- New DNB: Ethan Bear out, Cody Ceci in, Tyson Barrie stays
- New DNB: ‘Ultimate competitor’ Zach Hyman signs with Oilers
- Lowetide: Oilers targets for early and late in NHL free agency
- DNB: Oilers buy out James Neal
- Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects, summer 2021
- DNB: Oilers draft day notebook
- DNB: Oilers come under the microscope after passing on Jesper Wallstedt
- Jonathan Willis: Zach Hyman, by the numbers
- Lowetide: If the UFA market fails, can the Oilers find their 3rd-line centre internally?
- New DNB: What I’m hearing about the Oilers offseason
- New DNB: The Oilers must act fast to address their hole on defence
- DNB: Replacing Adam Larsson
- Lowetide: 5 players outside the NHL who could help the Oilers
- Jonathan Willis: Duncan Keith, by the numbers
- DNB: How Ken Holland’s overpay for Duncan Keith limits the Oilers’ offseason options
- Lowetide: 10 free agents for the Oilers to target this offseason
- Jonathan Willis: Yes or no? Have your say on 10 hypothetical Oilers trades
- Lowetide: Oilers 2021-22 roster projection, including trade and free agent targets
- DNB: How do Oilers fans feel about their team’s 2020-21 season?
- DNB: Five offseason scenarios that could upend the Oilers’ best-laid plans
- Lowetide: Why Oilers defenceman Evan Bouchard is poised to exceed expectations
- Lowetide: The 7 Oilers roster spots GM Ken Holland must improve this offseason
POSSIBLE OILERS ROSTER 2021-22
I’ve added RFA’s Foegele, Benson and Yamamoto, Klefbom is on LTIR and there’s $453,000 still to be spent. I don’t think Holland is done. My suspicion is that Holland will sign a LH veteran and put him in Russell’s spot, and spend time trying to get a better goalie option. Worse comes to worse, maybe they take Foegele or Marody to arbitration and buyout Koskinen but that’s a drastic measure.
I’ll give you my opinion on the team. I like the top two lines, and am heartened by the Foegele and Ryan additions to the third line. If that group can get close to 50 percent in five on five goal share, this Oilers team is going to look much better in 2021-22.
On defense, the top pair should perform as a year ago, and the five-man unit had success. I’ve seen numbers on Keith that are positive in moving the puck, but Cody Ceci as his partner screams third pair and I do believe that might be where things happen for these two.
What does that mean? I think the Oilers need one more defenseman. Left side, to partner with Evan Bouchard on what will be the second pair pdq. I think Ryan Murray is the best option out there. We wait.
OILERS V LOWETIDE LIST 2021 DRAFT
This is a wild and crazy set of draft lists, not sure I’ve seen anything close to the 2021 draft in my lifetime. Maybe before Central Scouting started in the mid-70’s but I wouldn’t have known about this kind of massive congregation of outliers and distant bells moving up and down the charts maniacally.
SAIL ON, ETHAN BEAR
The first time I noticed Ethan Bear was in a WHL boxscore, he filled all of the columns with a crooked number and began posting substantial boxcars early in his draft year. Edmonton got him in the fifth round of a deep draft, and his junior career rolled out after his draft like something close to a dream.
Despite being a later choice, albeit in a deep draft year, Bear showed early in those Bakersfield games that his trajectory would include the NHL. In his two seasons in the league, Bear has shown to be a fine two-way defender and a player who should have a long and successful career.
We all have favourites, Bear is one of mine. I wish him great success, suspect he’ll reach some significant heights with the Carolina Hurricanes. Sail on, POE Academy Bantam, I thought we’d have more time, making this parting more difficult. We’ll always remember you.
The Oilers crushed my list, and in fact this draft was exceptional considering how much was traded away. Ken Holland has traded all three defensemen now, so this tracking is just for the scouts and congratulations to all on a job well done.
Edmonton’s assets from the draft, as of today, are Connor McDavid, Duncan Keith, Warren Foegele and Shane Lachance. Holland is racing through Edmonton’s past successful draft picks, what does that tell us about the 2016 , 2017 and 2018 drafts?
History tells us that Jesse Puljujarvi, Tyler Benson, Kailer Yamamoto, Dmitri Samorukov, Stuart Skinner and Evan Bouchard are perhaps not destined to spend the heart of their careers in Edmonton. That’s a cynical take, but there’s something about human nature that puts more value on what you personally have experienced than things you’ve inherited.
Ken Holland will place higher value on Philip Broberg, Dylan Holloway and Xavier Bourgault because his management and scouting team arrived at those destinations. That’s human nature. Getting mad is not the answer, and replacing the general manager only means more orphans.
The Oilers have been sending away Andrew Cogliano and Jeff Petry and now Ethan Bear for most of this century. Jason Chimera was traded that way, and on it goes. There are many ways to win, my preference is draft and development. I don’t think the Oilers have been in that business since about 2005, although one always hopes and Bear was a true example of how things should work. Maybe Broberg spends his career in Edmonton, or Savoie.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
At 10 this morning, we’ll put together the pieces of yesterday and discuss Edmonton’s next steps. Joe Osborne from OddsShark will stop in and we’re working on other guests to discuss exactly what happened across the hockey landscape yesterday. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!