All the Young Punks (New Boots and Contracts)

by Lowetide

It changes by year of course, but I always look at five on five scoring first when evaluating forwards. If a player is on the No. 1 line, it’s proper to expect 2.00 pts-60; second line 1.70+ and the final two lines should have a 1.50 pts-60 player or more in order to assure secondary scoring.

For defensemen, I look at Corsi five on five. You need the top two pairings to be at or over 50 percent. It’s the widest swath you can cut and along with other stats gives us a truer view of the blue. Goalies? Five on five save percentage. Have to have a starter who is inside the top 15 among staring goalies across the leagues. How do the Oilers look for next year?


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!


  • Line 1: McDavid is the best player in the game, Hyman clears the bar and Puljujarvi posted 1.95 pts-60 at five on five when with the captain. I think this trio has the bet covered. It will be interesting to see if Tippett runs Kassian up here, I don’t see it working. Kassian isn’t strong in coverage, the coach needs this line to outscore.
  • Line 2: Draisaitl clears the 1.70 pts-60 line in the sand with ease, both wingers were unable to reach a satisfactory total. In both cases, I think you give the benefit of the doubt, and expect both to exceed in 2021-22. A repeat from either man would force management to reassess.
  • Line 3: Foegele gives the team a winger who can score at five on five, plus move up the depth chart. Ryan had a season that isn’t likely to be duplicated (Khaira had the same issue) but he can help on the PK, faceoffs and hopefully aid the third line in not getting caved. Archibald needs to score more points, this line gives him a better chance.
  • Line 4: No one listed on the fourth line or as an extra had much going on offensively last year, but that has to change. The Oilers might be forced to abandon an unproductive fourth line, scrapping it for parts and an improved penalty kill. Could Tippett run eight defenseman all year? I believe he might, as it takes care of the PK problem.
  • Pairing One: Nurse has a strong number overall, propped by McDavid minutes. Without 97, his Corsi five on five (44.6) is low. Nurse did not perform well with centers Jujhar Khaira (46.2), Devin Shore (38.1), Kyle Turris (41.7) and Gaetan Haas (40.3). Many Oilers fans hammer Nurse for those numbers, but for me it’s a roster quality issue more than anything. Tyson Barrie is also above 50 percent overall, but 45.9 away from McDavid. That’s a better number than Nurse, but my take is he’s sheltered more. Barrie’s numbers with bottom-six centers: Turris (45.6); Khaira (50.9); Shore (45.4); Haas (49.4).
  • Pairing Two: Duncan Keith and Cody Ceci are both newcomers to the team, their Corsi does inform us about their seasons in Chicago and Pittsburgh, respectively. Keith has some strange Corsi totals, including a higher number (45.2) away from Patrick Kane than with him (44.3) last year. The most striking stat of all Corsi totals is Keith away from goalie Kevin Lankanen: He has a 61.5 percent Corsi away from him. I don’t have an answer, it just stands out. Ceci played very well with Mike Matheson, a big puck mover with chaos in his game, don’t know what it means (49.1 percent Corsi) but Matheson is very mobile in case that becomes an issue. Lefties on the Oilers roster who have good speed (aside from Nurse) include Dmitri Samorukov and Philip Broberg.
  • Pairing Three: Evan Bouchard is the key here, he is likely to have several defensive partners over the year (Ryan Murray was a player Edmonton reportedly pursued before he signed with the Colorado Avalanche). He was 52.2 Corsi with Russell, 53.6 without him and played well with all defenders save Lagesson (39 percent) and Koekkoek (43 percent). Russell is going to play more than most believe, and Lagesson is in no-man’s land at this moment.
  • Goalies: Among goalies who played more than 1000 minutes in 2020-21, Mike Smith ranks No. 9 in five on five save percentage. Mikko Koskinen ranks No. 39 (.903). I will tell you there’s a larger than you think chance Koskinen will outplay Smith next year. Goalering is bewildering.


At 10 this morning, TSN1260, we kickstart a short week that ends with four CFL games! Woot! Jeff Krushell from Krush Performance will drop by at 10:20 to discuss the MLB deadline and the teams with the best post-season chances. Laura Armstrong from the Toronto Star will follow up with more baseball talk, this time specifically devoted to the Jays. Josh Lewenberg from TSN will talk NBA free agency, a crazy 24 hours in the league, and saying goodbye to Kyle Lowry. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!


You may also like

3.9 17 votes
Article Rating
Oldest Most Voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments

First off I know BLH is really stretching his “fair use” rights and I hate myself for reading, but I click blindly on all things oilers.
They were saying 2.6 for Foegele is a “little rich” .. considering what Barclay Goodrow got in FA I feel like that contract is pretty good value, no?


this will help with not getting either G at the draft


I am going out on a limb and will say Kassian does not start the season as an Oiler. I believe he has worn out his welcome with coaches and GM after getting his big contract, then his in ability to show up.

Plus, from a salary point of view. Klefbom on LTIR makes room for Yamo and Foegele’s $$$. The only 2 players left to move for salary space are Kassian and Kosk. If you move Kosk, you have to replace him with another goalie who will likely cost more.

Unless the Oilers can trade Kosk with no money retained, then run with Stalock or Skinner to back up Smith until the trade deadline, that leaves Kassian.

Next year Nurse’s and JP’s new contracts will need space and the only contracts to drop off will be Kosk, Turris, Archibald and Russell. Not much money there considering the Oilers would have to replace all those players in some form (Turris being the exception).

We need a Salary cap bump lol


At this point, I don’t think Kassian get moved. This was a player that Holland protected and I don’t think it was about him having trade value, I think it was about management (and the coaching staff) valuing him – of course, they are valuing a player we have not seen in a long time but that’s my take.

You mentioned that Koskinen would have to be replaced by a player that costs just as much – Khudobin costs less (but has 2 years) but, your next though, Stalock as the back-up, costs very little.

There is every reason to think that Stalock could provide adequate 1B tending – he’s done it recently. Ya, he hasn’t played since last August but he’s a professional athlete and will get his game back quick enough – if we went there.

Of course, Koskinen simply isn’t moveable with retaining and sweetening and its likely a non-starter.

Kass can be moved next off-season when the cap space is needed.


They value this player type
i doubt they are even interested in moving him


The way a couple of owners were handing out 9 million plus contracts for good D makes me believe that the cap is definitely going up at least 3-4 million.


Not in the next few years its not and I have responded to your comments on this before explaining why as per the MOU for the extended CBA – there is an agreement on the flat cap until certain parameters are met which will simply not happen for 2022/23.


Fully expecting a salary cap increase next year.

Bank Shot

Salary cap bump would be nice. Sure could use some massive gains to make the McDavid contract better every day.

$9 million for every 1st pair D-man helps it look a lot better.


excerpt from a Zadorov interview about Mackinnon. We know a lot of stars are jerks but This only works if you win championships.

Harpers Hair

Remember that time McDavid angrily berated Puljujaarvi for missing a pass on national television during the playoffs?

This only works if you win championships.


So you are comparing something that happened once to something that McKinnon’s former teammate happens regularly?

Harpers Hair

Do you know how McDavid comports himself with team mates?

I guess we’ll have to wait for a tell all expose when one of them gets traded.


Are you drunk?

Rich M

Hi Art!


Hi Art!


You gonna compare that to berating a teammate in practice? Of course you are


Mackinnon is no McDavid, though. You should know this. You lost a bet over it.

Ice Sage

In Harp’s defense, their last names do start off the same

Bank Shot

Welcome to the blog you clown.


It’s ass clown, thank you very much!


I’m kinda with you.. Was watching a Jay’s game earlier this year and I think it was Stripling who got angry at Joe Panik for making a bad throw to first.. and the guilt and remorse he felt for being “unprofessional” was profound. Like ya, have high expectations, but be a pro and respect your teammates.


I consider myself to be over in the logical/non-emotional (all relative of course) portion of fandom but every once in a while, I think you have to throw the numbers out and go with gut. I can picture two times I felt i player absolutely needed to be moved and the return on the trade was secondary. The first was Justin Schultz. It just wasn’t working here and you’ll never hear me complain about only getting a 3rd (or whatever) in return for a guy that played top 4 for two Cup winners.

I feel the same way about Mikko. I do understand his numbers say “league average” but my gut tells me there’s very little chance this works out.

He would have to have superhuman resilience and confidence to bounce back here.


Agreed. Unfortunate but necessary.


Mikko has a big kick me sign on his back. He couldn’t stop a beachball at crucial times last year and if it wasn’t for Smith and if we had to depend on Mikko we don’t make the playoffs. It’s a new year but he’s on a short rope with his teammates once they give up on you your done. It would be wise to get Stalock in game shape by playing him in exhibition games because 82 games is a long season for Smith’s groins.


With his contract having the negative value that we are seeing in the market and only one year to go, the team likely has no realistic choice but to “keep him”.

Its simply too costly to try and dispose of him.

That doesn’t mean he has to be on the roster, he could be assigned to the AHL (and not play so as to not take playing time away from Skinner/Konovalov) or he could be “encouraged” to try and find a job in the SHL or KHL or Liiga and be loaned.


If he gets a KHL offer he likes can both parties terminate the 4.5 million contract or prorate it if he leaves half-way through the year.

Material Elvis

Koskinen would have to agree to that but why would he? He would make a fraction of that much in the KHL.


Why walk away from 4.5M no one shoulda gave you and no one will again?


Coach T. was on Oilers Now today.

For me, the biggest snippet was with respect to Bouchard. When Bob asked about the defence and the pairings, Tip firstly reference he sees Bouch like Jesse last year and anticipates large growth through the season.

He said, ya, maybe he’ll start on the 3rd pair (although was non- committal on that) but referenced that he very well could push up the lineup during the season. He also referenced that again later in the interview out of the blue, without any specific talk about Bouch or the D – he really expects him to be a big part this year.


Bouchard only right shot D on the roster with all around abilities higher than 3rd pairing quality (except for experience).

Last edited 1 month ago by godot10
Eh Team

Bouchard just needs to play. He might have the highest ceiling of any Oilers D, including Nurse. Offensively he’s got all the chops, just a matter of getting defensive reps in. Right now I’d say he a better all-round D than Barrie, for example.


Oh, there is no doubt (in my mind) he has a higher offensive ceiling than Nurse (who has proven to be an elite 5 on 5 producer).

He won’t necessarily get there but I would think its more likely than not (that he does).

Bouch has definite potential to be a 50 plus point d-man.


I would hope Tippett expects him to be a big part of the defensive group this year. Holland has talked for months about being confident in seeing Bouchard move into the top 4 by the end of the year.

It would be concerning if Tippett said otherwise.


Bouchard should of been playing 3rd pairing and then eased into top 4 on occasion last year with PP time as well. Instead he sat in a hotel room by himself watching Netflix. Now you have Holland and Tippett sucking on him to be a top 3-4 with the non stop lip service. Thankfully for the Oilers and their fans that Bouchard is the goods and it’s going to be a treat watching him rack up the points and play non event D for years to come.


Should have *


Dubnyk is still available? Hmmm.


Two first period assists for Xavier Bourgault so far today (per Pronman – I’m not watching).


And a goal now in the 2nd.


What’s the tourny?


Canada National Junior Summer Showcase.

Todd Macallan

As per Scott Wheeler, Bourgault’s line with Bolduc was the best on the ice. Mark Masters noted Bourg had some “pep in his step.”

Part of Bourg’s scouting report is such a high hockey IQ he can adapt his game and play with anyone. Hopefully his versatility will aid his making the team this Xmas.


If all our defenders get hammered in the non-McDavid minutes, it is clear that improving the quality of those minutes is the priority. As long as the team is leading or tied, these three lines should be able to at least saw off possession:

Hyman – McDavid – Kassian

Kassian has played well with McDavid and Hyman is a perfect complement on both sides of the puck.

Benson – Draisaitl – Yamamoto

Benson is fully developed and deserves this shot. His outstanding passing should work well with two of the best finishers on the team.

Foegele – RNH – Puljujarvi

RNH and Puljujarvi had good numbers without McDavid last year and Foegele would solidify this line.

Archibald – McLeod – Ryan

They can PK, win faceoffs and push the puck into enemy territory.

This line up does not push the offense of any individual, but is balanced with size, speed and skill on each line. If we need a goal, load up the top lines then. Otherwise, each of the top three lines should get no more than 16 minutes a night at 5×5. Just my view.


There is zero indication that Benson is even among the best 14 forwards – much less worthy of prime time.

Kassian hasn’t been worthy of McDavid’s wing (or Leon’s) in over a year.

Wishing it won’t make it so.


Hollaway will make the team coming out of training camp. Book It.


In my estimation, Benson is a skill player. His consistent AHL scoring is under appreciated. Why does Yamamoto get so much more opportunity? His primary assist in 7 games is double what McLeod has managed and he is apparently good for third line center? He got almost no top 6 time in his audition, but in 3 minutes with Draisaitl they pinned the opposition and scored a goal.

We need another left wing for three strong lines. If Holloway is ready, fine, but I’d rather trust the more proven commodity.


You have to consider the opportunities at different positions and the differing skill sets. Covid prevented Benson from getting the opportunity that I believe he earned. Not fair but nobody’s fault. It is bad management to pencil a player in a NHL position without a backup player. You are comparing apples to oranges. I also believe in Benson. He will get his chance but unfortunately it may not be with the Oilers. Sometimes timing makes all the difference!


Benson should of been on the team last year unless there’s injuries which nobody hopes for I say he’s hooped. Benson had been a good employee but they played Hass Nygard etc instead of the him.


They played those guys because they are discernibly better.

The numbers have been covered well here. They don’t show Benson as exceptional. He also trails other prospects.

And then there’s the eye test – how much have people seen of him? I haven’t seen anything in his game yet to suggest he’s going to make it as anything more than very much on the fringe. The gap with the puck between he and say Shore, who can barely make this hockey club, is clear enough to notice for instance.


I think Benson was in the AHL last year so he would play more games. I’ve watched a bit of Benson in the AHL and have always seen a strong contributor. I was encouraged his shooting percentage went up last year and he had more goals than assists in the playoffs.

Benson may not amount to anything, but he is an asset whose high end vision might make him shine if given an opportunity. Before we lose him for nothing, we should get to find out.


Why wouldn’t you give a homegrown kid a paycheque and a opportunity. If he’s not in your plans trade him or cut him loose where I can guarantee another team will see if the young man has game. The way they’re fuking him around makes me lose respect for Holland and Tippett.


If you haven’t seen anything in his game that is NHL caliber you need to get your eyes checked. His passing would make him the third or fourth best player on the team if he started tomorrow. His board work, perseverance and hockey IQ are unquestionable. His skating due to injury history is all that was holding him back. He is a quality young man we should all be cheering for. You can disagree with an opinion but dissing Benson demeans your credibility and character not his!

Darth Tu

Not that I’m saying give Benson a top 6 spot just because, but if we’re being totally honest about last season I remember part of the issue with him not being called up to the NHL team was due to the quarantine rules.

Aside from that Edmonton were crushing it in the regular season even with the no real scoring from the 3rd and 4th lines.

He’s definitely now at the stage where he needs to make the team out of camp, or we should be trading him for whatever we can get. He’s definitely had enough AHL cooking time.


I think my disagreement is most with the idea that Benson and Kassian are not ‘worthy’. It’s not about whether they’re the best possible option. That is the strategy that leads to McDavid and Draisaitl playing together.

They have both succeeded when given the opportunity. Most importantly, giving them the opportunity allows players to slot down the line up so we can always have some skill on the ice to keep the puck out of our net and McDavid doesn’t have to play 25 minutes every night.

Last edited 1 month ago by Revolved

I definitely would hope some of these types of lines will get test driven in preseason.

I think its crazy how vehemently people are coming at this suggestion. Get some free looks early, maybe tippet finds enough in some of these combos to truly spread the talent over more lines.

If he does this team could really take a hard turn for better.


It changes by year of course, but I always look at five on five scoring first when evaluating forwards.

Personally, I’m starting to question this a bit for some middle six/3rd line players.

I mean, JJ Khaira’s P/60 was fairly good this past season. Dominic Kahun was over 2 P/60 a few times in his young career. Look at Derek Ryan’s P/60, approaching 2.0 and, of course, he is a 4C that we are hoping can moonlight as a 3C until McLeod or Holloway is ready.

There are definite bottom six players that have better P/60 than Taylor Hall (and other legit top 6 forwards) in recent times.

I think there are many many many examples of players that have very good P/60 on the 3rd line of teams but aren’t able to produce at real top 6 levels if/when moved up the lineup. Kahun is one example of this.

Last edited 1 month ago by OriginalPouzar

For many of these players, there’s a caveat. If you’re scoring at close to 2 points per hour at 5v5, but you’re overall point totals are far south of 0.5 points/game, then something is up… particularly if you’re scoring around 0.25 points per game.

This rule would grab your JJ’s, Ryan’s, etc.

However, Kahun is an interesting case..

Kahun’s last year in Pittsburgh prorates to 82-16-28-44

Those are decent numbers.

Even if you look at his career shooing %,

18-19: 9.5
19-20: 12.7
20-21: 13

No dip there.

For second assists/60

18-19: 0.35
19-20: 0.7
20-21: 0.1

Clearly had a spike in 19-20 playing in Pittsburgh and a huge drop last season.

His goals/60 at 5v5 has hovered between 0.63 and 0.81. Last season was 0.81

He played a bunch with Draistaitl and Yamamoto

Yamamoto shot 11.6% last year, so it wasn’t that.

Kahun had 1.6 points/hr with Draisaitl.

He had 200 minutes with Larsson, where offense died to 0.85 points/60

He also had 85 minutes with the Nuge where nothing good happened. 0.7 points/hr

Kahun and Larsson didn’t fit too well.

Both on. 48.5% FF. 27.51% GF. 212 minutes. 1.41 GF/60. 2.54 ga/60.
Kahun no larson. FF 47%. GF 50% 377 minutes.


Like I’ve been saying for years. Coaches usage means almost as much as the numbers. If this guys numbers are so good, why doesn’t the coach use him more. And as much as we like to think we are smarter than the coaches they do watch them every day.

Scungilli Slushy

I know the rate stat is to account for TOI. I look at it from a season point of view.

If a fourth liner is supposed to get 20 points, He needs a point every four games roughly.

Leon is supposed to get at least a point per every game.

Connor doesn’t count, he broke the machine.

I think it makes things more clear, you just have to factor in that most players are streaky scorers.

But at half way if you have a fourth liner getting regular fourth line shifts and games in, and they have 4-5 points, the AHL is calling. That’s shaping up to a 10 point season and that doesn’t cut the mustard.

I think LT has broken it down that way before, but it’s probably like
first line – pushing 1 PPG
second line – .75 PPG
third line – approaching .5 ppg
fourth line – .25 ppg

Something like that.


Yes, given some of the bottom six players with high(ish) P/60, I often find P/G much more indicative.


I’m not sure ANY of the d pairings mentioned will be able to defend or break cycles against elites…yes the forwards are better, but that defence….especially the right side….no matter how you shuffle the names, is not very good…If not for Nurse, it could be the worst d in the NHL. Goal saw zero changes. This team is at best equal to last year. I don’t expect overall improvement unless more help is brought in via goalie or defence. (Or massive help from internal).

Last edited 1 month ago by fistycuff
Randle McMurphy

There are a lot of factors to consider; A lot of moving parts.

Will Nurse continue to outperform his previous year

Will Keith excel playing less minutes against lesser comp with a better partner

Will Barrie have a better year now that he is acclimatized to his new environment and secure in term

Will Ceci ease into the rockin chair with a solid D partner like Keith and the same long term security that Barrie received

What will Bouchard’s trajectory look like

IMO this defense will likely outscore last years defense. And if just a couple of things break right, they might be better defensively as well. Could/should see much better puck movement from this group than last years group

Last edited 1 month ago by Randle McMurphy
Randle McMurphy

Keith/Ceci >= Kulikov/Larsson ?


Should be…fingers crossed!

Randle McMurphy

imo…you just can’t overstate the amount of relief (mentally and physically) that Keith is going to get just by playing behind Darnell Nurse.

It will the first time in his career that he’s not expected to be the leader on defense.

Last edited 1 month ago by Randle McMurphy
Elgin R

Yes without question. Keith – Ceci >>> [insert name] – Larsson


Except they will not have any chance of stopping elites….whereas Larson DID stop elites and their cycles. My gramma-Larson>>>>Keith-Ceci.


An empty beer glass-Adam Larson>>>>>Keith-Ceci


5 empty beer glasses-no Adam Larson>>>>Keith-Ceci. Lol.


You should change your handle to feistycuff.😉 Continue to do you!


The game of hockey, including defensive play, is more than just “stopping cycles”.

Codi Ceci did well in 2nd pairing minutes last season, playing with a non-cycle stopper with chaos in his game in Michael Mattheson.

I didn’t watch Ceci play at all last season but I have read nothing but good things from Pens’ fans, Pens’ beat reporters and Pens’ bloggers.


Just like you never say bad things about the just deceased it is rare to hear bad things about the just traded. It’s a human nature thing!😉


no matter how you shuffle the names, is not very good

What do you mean?

They’ve got their Quinn Hughes for 2/3 the price (and who actually wins his goal share), their newly signed Myers for half the price and a top prospect making 0.34 Tucker Poolman’s who will surely outperform the real thing.

What’s not to like?

Harpers Hair

In reality, the Canucks have their Cody Ceci at almost half the price.

They have a 30 year old version of Duncan Keith.

They also have their own Evan Bouchard in Jack Rathbone who was excellent in late season appearances in both the AHL and NHL.

Quinn Hughes is only 21 and will be better than Barrie during the latter’s new contract.

The Canucks also added 2 saavy vets at league minimum, Brad Hunt and Luke Schenn, as insurance while the Oilers will have to rely on rookies when things go south.


You said the exact same shit with different names last year. How did that ‘reality’ work for you? Where’s Brogan these days?

Harpers Hair

Brogan will be leading the Ducks to glory in the near future.

How did you miss this?


Rose coloured glasses. But you also thought Brogan Rafferty was the next great D. I’m pretty sure you wife wouldn’t even trust you to pick out tomatoes at the grocery store and rightly so!😂



I find it hard to believe that you really think any of this is true.

Hunt & Schenn aren’t even NHL dmen at this point imo.

Harpers Hair

Hunt paired with Carson Soucy on the 3rd pairing in Minnesota recently.

Schenn was the 7th D on the two time cup winning TBL for the past 2 seasons.

Both are better options than a couple of rookies who have never played a game in the NHL.


Good Grief!

Hunt played 10 minutes per game, 16% of his TOI vs. elites and 48% against Grits and ended up with a 16% GF%.

Harpers Hair

Good Grief!

You looked at the wrong season…the one before he caught Covid.

15:08 TOI/GP on the 3rd pairing.

Hardly a difference maker but certainly a decent bet as a fill in especially since he plays both sides.

Luke Schenn is a RHD who is a big, nasty shutdown D perfect as a 7-8 when required.

Who are the Oilers 7-8 D?


What? I looked at this past season and he played maybe the easiest minutes in the league and got killed.

Brad Hunt, seriously, come on, be better at your craft.


Hunt was the most sheltered 3rd pairing defenseman in the league. Second most sheltered? Vince Dunn.




“In reality…”

Proceeds to write fiction.

Harpers Hair

You’re going to love Danila Klimovitch, the Belarussian Assassin.

Interestingly, the Canucks signed him days after the entry draft to keep him out of the clutches of the KGB.

The 6’2” 210 (and still growing) sniper is eligible to play in the QMJHL or the AHL due to his unique circumstances.


I’ll agree the Canucks have their 30 year old Keith, noting he played fewer minutes, was more sheltered, had worse results relative to team, and costs $2M more for 4 years longer than the Oilers version.

And yes, Hughes *could* pass Barrie in the next few years. He sure as hell hasn’t yes (though he’ll be paid like he has), so until we see it this is all hope and prayers.


We’ve moved on from propping up Helm to Hunt in order to denigrate the Oilers – i can’t wait to hear all about Daniel Vlader and Kevin Gravel tomorrow.

Harpers Hair

The Oilers have been denigrating themselves for 30 years.

4 first overall picks and they can’t win a playoff series against weak opponents.

Not sure what Vlader and Gravel have to do with anything but cRry on.

Harpers Hair

Kind of the same wet dream as Bouchard


No longer discussing ’30 year old Keith’? I can understand not trying to defend that.

And yes, similar hopes and dreams about Bouchard as Hughes, that’s fair. Though I’ve certainly never called Bouchard an elite #1 defenseman who *will* be better than the NHLs top scoring D within the next 3 years. Bouchard of course also has good size and at least the potential to be a defender with a chance to break up the cycle game (since that’s where we started).

Harpers Hair

Bouchard is at best an average skater while Hughes is elite.

Worth noting Jack Rathbone is also an elite skater and is a graduate of the Harvard defense factory.

I expect in 3 years Bouchard will be a footnote in this conversation.


Yes, Hughes is the better skater. Bouchard has much better size as I said, and the better shot.

Seriously, though Hughes is going to be paid 6 or 7 times as much as Bouchard over the next few years. The real comparable is Barrie, and Hughes still needs to take a step or two to get there (while being paid for the potential).

I expect in 3 years Bouchard will be a footnote in this conversation.

This almost sounds like ‘Bouchard won’t be an NHLer’, which obviously, you’d be a fool to say.

This does smack of Rafferty > Bouchard though.

Harpers Hair

The system you play in and your partner makes a huge difference in player performance.

OEL was a terrible fit in the Arizona trap system.

The Canucks play an up tempo attacking style…I expect he will thrive there.


Yeah that’s the hope obviously.

OEL was very good for a long time in Arizona’s system though (including the first couple of years under Tocchet). It’s been a slip slide down in the past few years. Even in the same system, and even with reduced minutes and competition.

It truly is the Keith bet, just for 1/3 more cap and for 3x as long. Best of luck.

Harpers Hair

They also have their Ceci in Poolman who was miscast in Winnipeg (they had little choice) and paired him with Morrisey.

I expect he will perform as well as Ceci but for a ton less cap hit now that his responsibilities will be reduced.


They also have their Ceci in Poolman who was miscast in Winnipeg (they had little choice) and paired him with Morrisey.

I expect he will perform as well as Ceci but for a ton less cap hit now that his responsibilities will be reduced.

I assumed you’d meant Hamonic when you said ‘half’ the salary earlier. Forgot Hamonic had jumped from $1.5M to $3M.

Poolman makes 80% of what Ceci makes. And he was the Jets clear #4D this past season (by overall TOI, 5v5 TOI, QoC). This a team whose D corps was it’s main weakness. So Poolman’s high water mark is an 18 minutes/game defender who’s in over his head.

But yeah, if he plays exclusively 3rd pair with Rathbone then it’s possible his on ice results will be similar to Ceci’s at 80% the cost. We’ll see.


Evander Kane is a cancer to any locker room.


He’s the Harpers Hair of the SJ Sharks

Randle McMurphy

lol….I’m sure he’ll go to one of HH’s preferred teams…(in other words, one of the other 30 teams that’s not the Oilers.)

Last edited 1 month ago by Randle McMurphy

Give Kane some credit, atleast he doesn’t use terrible excuses to try to get out of paying his gambling debt like HH does.


*wins thread*

Elgin R

Want to bet on that?


Some things are starting to come into view.

Khudobin for a 4th
Koskinen to Buffalo for a 5th
Kassian + Lavoie + 2023 2nd for Kane at $2 million retained.
No one coming in as a 3D.

Here’s how I would run the lines to start:

Shore-Marody or PTO

Russell- Bouch
Lagesson or PTO

Stalock (need to keep him around somehow)


If they could unload Koskinen, spend a 4th on Khudobin(who would be a great mentor for Konavolov) it’d be an ideal day.

Last edited 1 month ago by Bill

I doubt Dallas trades Khudobin with Bishop’s health a question mark.


Don’t they have Khudobin, Holtby, Bishop and a young kid(Oettinger?) maybe Nill wants to free up a spot, never know I guess.

Jethro Tull

I don’t think Chicago trades Kane, especially for that. Because you surely can’t mean the other Kane.


Evander Kane did not work well in Winnipeg, and by the sounds of it, him getting older didn’t make him any wiser or smarter. Hard pass.


We gave Zach Kassian chance.


Evander Kane is a 12 year NHL vet. He was the top scorer on his team and is an asshat. How many actually good or great teams has he been on?

Team’s league standing in each season of his career:

31 – – > 11

Perhaps being on a losing team has a correlation to the negativity of some individual’s attitudes… Or perhaps not.

Dammit Jim! I am a statistician, not a psychologist!!


Wait, Buffalo is going to take Mikko’s contract and give a draft pick for it?

I think you mean, Koskinen to Buffalo with 50% retained and a 4th (to Buffalo) for, nothing.


… and Oilers fans want to spend assets to acquire John Gibson based on what he was before 2019…


Last edited 1 month ago by ArmchairGM

It’s called taking a page out of Holland’s book see the Keith trade!😂😂


I will be floored if a GM parts with an asset of any kind in order to get Koskinen, 50% retention or no. How much would you want Edmonton to pay for another team’s struggling 4.5M 1B who has a reputation (deserved or otherwise) for having a weak glove hand and for conceding the first shot of the game?


I doubt Koskinen’s Cap hit is an issue in Buffalo. As well, Koski’s record is not at Devan Dubnyk or Martin Jones or Brayden Holtby levels, he is still NHL calibre. And not only is Buffalo sitting with $28+ million in Cap Space (and this does NOT include Eichel’s LTIR) & 3 RFA’s to sign, they are also trying to make all the Wright moves for the 2022 Draft.

Last edited 1 month ago by €√¥£€^$

Montreal is the only team that might take a chance on Kane.


Lol…very true. That seems to be their MO these days isn’t it? What a disgrace Kane and the Canadiens have become.


#Oilers UFA Theodor Lennstrom signs with Torpedo Nizhny Novgorod (KHL)


Why is this guy not playing in the A? Oilers do strange things with some of their over sea prospects/draft choices.


Broberg, Samorukov, Niemelainen will be there on NHL contracts, Kaldis on AHL contract and Stanton might end up there again. Only so much room at the Inn.


That is the Left side. The right has Berglund, Kemp and Kesselring on NHL deals and Desharnais on an AHL deal and likely another to be added.

Last edited 1 month ago by €√¥£€^$

They didn’t qualify him.

He’s not an Oilers’ draft pick and I would say that’s an aggresive use of the word “prospect” as he turns 27 this week.

It was a decent bet, and he showed some skill in Bakersfield but he’s behind Lagesson, Samorukov, Brogerg and, now, Neiemelainen.

Lots of d-men in Bakersfield for this season.

Randle McMurphy

With all the new additions, I thiink we see the blender in action for most of the first half of the season.

Most interesting to me is :

1) Foegele vs Yamamoto

2) Will Bouchard be as good as everyone here seems to think, or will he be stuck on the 3rd pair for the whole season.

3) Will Skinner get more than a couple of games in goal

4) In what month does Holloway arrive


4b) Sammy
4c) Benson

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I do not understand 1). Foegele is a LW and Yamo is a RW. I do not think they are really competing for the same spots?

I see the top three RW spots as some combination of Yamo, JP, Kass, and Hyman.

The top three LW spots will be some combination of Hyman, RNH, Drai, Foegele, and Holloway.


Foegele played RW 77% of the time last year. Hyman played RW 47% of the time. Neither player should be pigeonholed IMO.

For reference, Archibald played RW less than Foegele, 61%.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Thanks for this. I had no idea Foegele played RW so frequently.

Randle McMurphy

Foegele plays both wings


I think Hyman is also a natural right wing that has played more left wing in recent years due to the right wing depth in Toronto.

I didn’t realize that Foegele played so much of the right side recently – I wonder where he’s “most comfortable”.

The fact both these guys can play both sides is really going to help create options for the coach – there are so many potential combos and it will also help when injuries hit.


Does Samorukov break camp with the team or get sent down?

I notice a lot less chatter about Benson since Hyman and Foegele were signed as well. Has his window closed in Edmonton?


No, he’s on the roster IMO. The question is, does he beat Shore for a 4th line spot or does he sit in the PB to start?



 Reply to Randle McMurphy

 August 3, 2021 10:33 am

Does Samorukov break camp with the team or get sent down?

I notice a lot less chatter about Benson since Hyman and Foegele were signed as well. Has his window closed in Edmonton?

Foegele certainly has made it tougher for Benson to make the team but Benson should still get a real shot during camp and exhibition games. I behoove the coaching staff to give him line rushes and exhibition games with some real NHL players and not just tweeners and AHL players like the past.

Shore has the a 12th to 14th forward spot in pencil but, 100%, Tyler Benson should be able to push Shore off the roster if he earns it.

That was the thing with the Shore signing, it was fine, but it should not block any other player – it can be fully buried and if Benson earns a spot over Shore, then he sticks.

Shore has an advantage due to PK (and no, I can’t see Benson being used on the PK in 2021) but the team should have may options at forward for the PK so that should not be a determining factor – he was fine on the PK but not high end.


Foegele and Yammer could be a nice complementary set of wingers. Both are good skaters, forechecking demons and responsible for 200ft. The former is a little more physical with seemingly less of a scoring touch and vice versa for the latter. It will be interesting to see if they could be line mates at some point in 2021. If so, the ideal center in the lineup for them is probably Nuge.

Randle McMurphy

somewhere down the line (not this year)

Foegele Nuge Yamamoto


Yeah, I don’t really see it this year either. Just musing aloud.
If Holloway pushes it is easy to see one of Foegele or Hyman on RW. Their proven capacity to flip-flop wings adds many permutations to line possibilities.
My spidey sense is telling me not to get too emotionally attached to KY for 2022-23.

Elgin R

Foegele: 13g + 13a / 82 game average for 200 game career (4 years)
Yamamoto: 11g + 20a / 82 game average for 105 game career (4 years)

Foegele in 3rd line usage scores more than KY in higher usage. Foegele is 2 1/2 years older than KY and I think that is a factor.


I think you should check your math. I believe it’s:
Foegele 82-14-14-28
Yamamoto 82-16-25-41


I don’t like using results against the PuckIQ tiers because 1) small sample size, but mostly because 2) the results vary wildly between team and year, with results vs lower tiers often being worse than those vs elites.

But if we look at DFF% relative to team, and over multiple years a lot of those issues go away.

So, DFF%RC vs elites over the past 3 seasons (most recent on top):








Not sure what meaning this has, if any, but it certainly paints the new adds in a better light.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Barrie’s recent season really stands out.

Ceci and Keith both look pretty good.

Russell’s numbers are a bit bizarre.


Yeah a few of those numbers are pretty strange.

Elgin R

KRusty did not do the Starry McStarfish as much last season. Staying up on one’s skates seems to work for an NHL player – who knew.


Teams have already been shown to protect players by playing them against elites the second half of the elites shift where they are more tired, will be looking to change soon, and of course wont be able to jump out with fresh legs


Yes, but who would that apply to here?

Bouchard, Lagesson? Ceci a little, but this year only. Russell? Barrie?

One could check the OTF starts I guess, I don’t have time now.

Randle McMurphy

Puljujarvi posted 1.95 pts-60 at five on five when with the captain.

What did Kassian post five in five when with the captain.


1.23 in 98 minutes.

McDavid was Kassian’s most common forward linemate in 20-21.

Last edited 1 month ago by ArmchairGM

Come on. Last 3 seasons for both players with McDavid (who was the most common linemate for both).

Puljujarvi 619min 1.94
Kassian 1190min 2.22

Both had a 53% GF with McDavid as well.


A big part of the issue with both JP and Kass has been center depth. Only one guy gets McDavid, the other starves. Hopefully McLeod and Ryan can fix that.

Elgin R

Hyman has solved that by allowing Draisaitl to play away from McDavid.


Yes, agreed.

As you and Elgin say, the new additions will help.


I assumed he was talking about last season only (since that’s where the Kassian number came from), so I responded in kind. Did you really expect me to compare apples-to-oranges??

For a complete apples-to-apples comp, look at how much Draisaitl spent with each duo.


For a complete apples-to-apples comp, look at how much Draisaitl spent with each duo.

I guess you did.

I’m not sure about the P/60 without Draisaitl, but you probably saw that McDavid-Puljujarvi and McDavid-Kassian without Draisaitl both had a 51% GF in 400-500 minutes. You could probably also argue that Nuge was a better LW than whoever played with McDavid-Kassian when Draisaitl wasn’t there.

Randle McMurphy

Hyman McDavid Kassian
RNH Draisaitl JP
Foegele Ryan Yamamoto
Shore McLeod Archibald
Benson Holloway Turris

Randle McMurphy

I like this from Primetime,

Hyman (aggressive)-McD-JP
RNH-Drai-Kassian (aggressive)
Foegele (aggressive)-Ryan-Yamo (aggressive but small)
Shore McLeod Archibald

With Holloway chomping at the bit, this forward roster is approaching balance.

Last edited 1 month ago by Randle McMurphy
Elgin R

Start of the Season

  1. Hyman – 97 – JP
  2. RNH – 29 – KY
  3. Foegele – McLeod – Kassian
  4. Shore – Ryan – Archie

Extras: Benson – Turris

  1. Nurse – Barrie
  2. Keith – Ceci
  3. KRusty – Bouchard

Extra: Wild Bill

Condor’s: Holloway, Sammy, Broberg, Marody etc

Due to injuries or poor play Holloway and Sammy up with the big team by the new year.

Last edited 1 month ago by Elgin R

It’s amazing to think about how much the play of Kassian could affect this season. If “good” Kassian appears for a majority of games, out top 9 is rock solid. If that is the case, I personally would move him into the top 6 to try and balance out agression and scoring on each line:

Hyman (aggressive)-McD-JP
RNH-Drai-Kassian (aggressive)
Foegle (aggressive)-Ryan-Yamo (aggressive but small)

Last edited 1 month ago by Primetime
Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I was thinking the opposite. It is amazing to think about how little Kassian’s play matters because the forward depth is improved so much. It would fantastic if “good” Kassian shows up but the success of the forward lines is not dependent on this unlikely scenario.


Right, expectations are near zero, and they don’t need him. So it virtually only possible for him to have a positive impact relative to expectations.

Randle McMurphy

Yeah. I like this too.

With so many forwards that play multiple positions, 3 new guys trying to find thier way, and the coaches need to move players around to “get them going” and “keep them motivated”, the blender will be operating like a fixture at a frozen margarita bar.

Randle McMurphy

In fact, I like Primetime’s slotting better than what I posted.


Why can’t “good” Kassian play on the 3rd line? That’s what you call depth.

Darth Tu

I’m now in the camp of: If good Kassian shows up this year then we should trade him next summer. I loved Kassian at first, but he’s completely fell off the radar for the last 2 years. Hopefully I’m wrong and there’s some truth to the “feeding off the crowd” thing with him.


October to December 2019 Zack Kassian would be a huge add to the lineup. That player was not just riding the coattails of McDavid and Drai but he was adding to the line – he was winning offensive zone battles and making plays. Of course, he was third fiddle but indeed a fiddle. Yes, he had his defensive zone issues, as he always will, but that player was a material contributor to goal scoring on the top line.

If that Kass shows himself, I would be absolutely fine with him in the top 6 and Kailer moved to 3RW (or maybe even Jesse to “drive a 3rd line”) – that would be real contending depth on both wings.

Of course, does that Kassian still exist? I sure hope so but can’t be overly confidant until I see him.


I’ve always thought Kane would be a perfect compliment to Edmonton’s skilled centers, but as my real estate agent would say, ‘it’s the money, honey’.


I know what they feel like.


Are Foegele and Athanasiou the “same” player? If we had just QO AA in 2019 we would have a had more secondary scoring last year, and Ethan Bear.

Career stats

AA 26 years old 350 games, 94 goals, 85 assists, 179 points 1x 2.70 (he would have been 2x$3.0)
WF 25 years old 200 games, 35 goals, 33 assists, 68 points 3x$2.75

Last edited 1 month ago by YYCOil

Are they the same player? Not even close.


They are not the same player at all. AA is a legit scoring threat though.


I dont think you could find two different players


I will tell you there’s a larger than you think chance Koskinen will outplay Smith next year.

Relying on Smith to replicate last season’s performance is pretty much the definition of playing with fire imo.

I would bet money Holland falls asleep and wakes up thinking about what he can do to bring in a different partner for Smith so that he can be the 30-35 game guy rather than the 50 game guy.

That said Koskinen has a lot of work to do to regain the confidence of his teammates and that confidence is critical because without it everybody on the ice in front of him changes the way they play in order to compensate for what they perceive to be his unpredictability to stop routine shots.

Teams can win with average goal tending. It is much more difficult with unpredictable goal tending.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Tip and Holland did their best to sewer Koski all season.

Beginning of the season: overplay Koski. Predictable results.

End of the season: never play Koski. Predictable results.

When Koski has a reasonable schedule he is serviceable.

That being said, Holland will 100% be trading for his Roloson this season. There is no way he goes into the playoffs with this tandem.


If Smith plays well all season I don’t think a goalie gets added. That said, I think there’s a good chance a Roloson gets added.


If he was making 1 million no problem but when you have to coddle and spoon feed your 4,5 million dollar number 1A-B goalie your in deep shit.

Dee Dee

Mikko “Goldilocks” Koskinen.


I don’t think Smith will repeat his performance next year, but if both guys can play at their 2-year averages then the team won’t have much to worry about. I have much less confidence in the defense.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Hopefully, the improved depth at F can buoy a D that is not designed to be particularly good at defending. But yeah, the D is concerning. Holland might need to trade for a Chris Pronger.


He’s already on the roster!

But seriously, I wish there was enough cap space to go after Parayko next summer. I guess if Ceci / Barrie have decent seasons they’re tradable, but knowing Holland it’d be Bouchard going out. 😛

Last edited 1 month ago by ArmchairGM

…Which increases my concern for our goaltending. Good D makes mediocre goalies look like good goalies, bad D makes good goalies look like bad goalies. Problem with Koskinen or Stalock is neither has Smith’s puck handling, and Smith takes a lot of pressure off his D, so we have even more eggs in the Smith basket than it may appear. IMO, it was not necessary to enter this season exposed to this much risk.


Not necessarily at Smith’s level but Stalock is one of the better goalies at handling the puck.


Funny, I feel the opposite. On the right side I think Bouchard is going to be good. Barrie will be the same as last year. I will wait to see if we end up with Pittsburgh Ceci or Ottawa Ceci.

I am pretty comfortable with Keith – the acquisition cost annoyed the heck out of me, as it did pretty much all of us – but I have no doubt he can still play. KRussell is a known quantity and I am hoping to see him platooned with Samorukov.

I also expect more help from the forwards.

The numbers don’t really describe goalies to the degree that they give me confidence. As almost any hockey guy will tell you it when they make the stop, when they let a softie in that separates them. This is a problem for Koskinen as it was for Dubnyk.

Skaters really just want the guy in net to be predictable and consistent. They want to know what they can allow the other team to do in their end and what is likely to go in the net. Uncertainty is what destroys the system play. Nobody knows what they should be doing.

Darth Tu

Ha. I laughed at the running 8 D all year, but maybe we do see 7 D and 11 forwards more often than we usually do in these parts? Lagesson as the 7th man sliding in for PK mins or defensive zone starts if one of the other left is shitting the bed.

Then you take turns spotting McDavid, Drai, Nuge with Shore and McLeod.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

What happened to using rel corsi? I am not sure if comparing raw corsi numbers between teams is that helpful? Am I missing something? I.e. Keith’s 44.8 and Russell’s 44.3 are not the same. Edmonton had a 48.64 corsi 5v5 and Chicago had 45.85 corsi 5v5. Keith’s number is bad but this is largely because Chicago was awful.


Ryan had a season that isn’t likely to be duplicated (Khaira had the same issue) but he can help on the PK

18-19 1.82
19-20 1.75
20-21 1.91


I will tell you there’s a larger than you think chance Koskinen will outplay Smith next year”

This is the concern!!


Stalock better be in game shape because we’re a groin pull away from sucking hind tit if we have to depend on Mikko for a long stretch.


After looking at the past 2 year’s numbers for both players, I’m a lot less concerned than you are.