Pacific Heights

by Lowetide

The Edmonton Oilers are 5-1-1 with one more game to come in the 2021-22 preseason. The club overcame a Vancouver Canucks team that brought some high skill and lots of nasty to the contest. Zack Kassian was injured in a third period fight, as he fell and hit his head on the ice. No idea on when he can play, or if he is concussed, but early word on his condition was positive and that’s a relief.

The Canucks are going to have to play an aggressive, smothering style this season, and the Oilers are going to have to overcome the hacks and whacks and running over the goalie. Mission accomplished at home, and the road game goes Saturday.

THE ATHLETIC!

THE STORY

Mike Smith had a fine night, he was at his fiesty best. Stopped 37 of 39, .949 and stoned the Canucks on 22 even-strength shots. Stopped nine of 10 HDSC’s according to Natural Stat Trick. He was excellent.

Darnell Nurse-Tyson Barrie played 12:46, going 11-7 with no goals. Nurse picked up a power-play assist, ran some interference and then passed to McDavid who sent a dart to 29. Nurse had four shots, created a rebound, and made several nice passes. Barrie had a fairly quiet evening but is also a fine passer, and thinks creatively. I noticed both men (and really all defenders) lingering to retrieve pucks at the blueline often. Barrie was noticeable in this area.

Duncan Keith-Cody Ceci played 14:10, going 10-6 shots and 1-0 goals. Keith was 1-7 at five on five Corsi events late in the first period, went 12-8 after. That’s a nice recovery. Passed well, he was physical. Had an assist, on a nice shot pass to Ryan, he also took two penalties. Ceci had three shots, took a penalty, and was less effective at holding off roaring Canucks heading into the corner and net front. He got his money’s worth on the slash. This was the best game for the duo so far, we’ll likely see them again Saturday.

Kris Russell-Evan Bouchard played 9:03, going 2-5 shots and no goals. Russell was his usual self, blocked a shot, took a penalty and both spent the night in chase mode and was not scored upon. Bouchard touched the puck often, he looked strong in the offensive end. He has tremendous passing skill, but seemed shy about using it early when the main players arrived. I thought Bouchard was looser last night, his creativity is going to pay off in a big way. Bouchard played over six minutes on the PK.

Leon Draisaitl-Connor McDavid-Jesse Puljujarvi played 10:43, going 6-4 shots and no goals. Draisaitl went 1-1-2, with all the damage (including 7 shots) on the power play. The big man drew a penalty, had a couple of giveaways. He tries a Pete Mahovlich ‘split the seam’ play once a night now, I hope he eventually makes it. McDavid’s PP assist was gorgeous but his goal was even better. He’s so quick and creative while under control. He’s a master. Puljujarvi had several goal looks, could easily have cashed. This line is excellent but received a steady diet of Hughes-Poolman and the Dickinson line. They’ll have to split 97 and 29 when the teams with better shutdown options appear on the schedule.

Warren Foegele-Derek Ryan-Zack Kassian played 9:34, going 5-6 shots and 1-0 goals. The line created plenty of havoc, and scored the winner (the only even strength goal of the evening). Foegele had an assist, drew a penalty and had a takeaway. He’s a complete pain in the ass. Ryan scored the winner, made smart plays and had four shots, a HDSC and a giveaway. Backchecked like a demon on one play when the Oilers needed exactly that player. He’s settling in well. Kassian was net-front on the winning goal, drew a penalty and then hit his head on the ice during a fight. Initial word was positive, but the concussion worry is real and the Oilers/Kassian must be careful.

Zach Hyman-Nuge-Kyle Turris played 7:40, going 4-5 shots and no goals. Hyman had a great chance to score and was a tough competitor on the forecheck all night. He’s a dogged winger in pursuit of the puck, and will not leave the net front for love nor money. He and Foegele give LW a completely different look. Nuge had a couple of good looks, including a high danger chance, I thought he was more involved offensively. He is still looking for his first five on five point of the year. Turris looked effective without getting anything truly dangerous accomplished.

Tyler Benson-Ryan McLeod-Colton Sceviour played 6:58, going 5-1 shots and no goals. The lines results were solid but no one cashed. Benson had one reasonable look and mostly got pucks deep, but had two giveaways and one was a dangerous moment. McLeod had a shot on goal, quiet otherwise. Sceviour had a HDSC and was the most dynamic player on the line.

WAIVERS

We’re seeing more waiver activity as teams begin to send down players they’ll be counting on later in the year. The Canucks lost a solid young winger last night, here are the players of interest today.

  • RD Ryan Murphy, Detroit. Undersized defender with skill chosen No. 12 in the 2011 draft by the Carolina Hurricanes, he was in the KHL one year ago and then the AHL last season. His NHL career can’t be over at 28, can it?
  • LW AJ Greer, New Jersey. Greer is a player I’ve followed since his draft, he has a Patrick Maroon type career going so far. Big, strong, you’d call him a power forward if the offense was more dynamic. Greer posted .656 per game last season in the AHL (age 23), Maroon was just shy of a point per game at the same age.
  • RD Steve Santini, St. Louis. A big shutdown defender who has been spending the last several seasons on the fringes of the NHL. I think a team might take a chance on him, he has played 119 NHL games and is 26.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

A busy Friday morning, TSN1260 beginning at 10. We’ll talk to Steve Lansky from Inside the Truck podcast about the Jays season, MLB playoffs and favourite hockey broadcasting teams across the league. Matt Iwanyk will talk Elks, Canadian men’s soccer and Oilers. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. It’s the long weekend!! Turkey! Huzzah! Music!

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OriginalPouzar

I saw that Savoie has a faceoff win but didn’t realize it was a win and absolutely beauty play/assist:

https://twitter.com/DU_Hockey/status/1447018810855198721

Hemskyish

up a little early watching man city against man united, just wondering if everybody is on board to call flames-Oilers the Darby for a bit. Hahaha

jp

I posted something similar to this a few weeks back, but with all the talk today about playing Draisaitl-McDavid together, and how dumb it is, I figured I’d post again.

Over the last 3 seasons at 5v5:

McDavid (no Draisaitl) 1654min 79GF-84GA (48.5%)
Draisaitl (no McDavid) 1750min 74GF-71GA (51.0%)

Draisaitl-McDavid 1702min 124GF-97GA (56.1%)
Nuge as 2C ——- 1318min 41GF-54GA (43.2%)

All told that’s:
McDavid/Draisaitl apart — 153GF-155GA (49.7%)
McDavid/Draisaitl together 165GF-151GA (52.2%)

————————————————–

If you don’t believe me, or think things have changed, here’s last season:

McDavid (no Draisaitl) 595min 31GF-31GA (48.5%)
Draisaitl (no McDavid) 567min 22GF-16GA (57.9%)

Draisaitl-McDavid 343min 33GF-17GA (66.0%)
Nuge as 2C ——- 205min 5GF-7GA (41.7%)

Totals:
McDavid/Draisaitl apart — 53GF-47GA (53.0%)
McDavid/Draisaitl together 38GF-24GA (61.3%)

—————————————————-

And if you’re thinking, wait, playoffs!! Here are the last 2:

McDavid (no Draisaitl) 71min 4GF-6GA (40.%)
Draisaitl (no McDavid) 73min 3GF-5GA (37.5%)

Draisaitl-McDavid 89min 5GF-3GA (62.5.%)
Nuge as 2C ——- 55min 1GF-2GA (33.3%)

Totals:
McDavid/Draisaitl apart — 7GF-11GA (38.9%)
McDavid/Draisaitl together 6GF-5GA (54.5%)

—————————————————-

Now I’m not trying to argue they should play together. I agree the team would be more formidable if both Connor and Leon could drive separate punishing lines. But I’ll be kind here and say there is no evidence that the team has been better when they’ve done that.

Personally I’m ambivalent about what alignment Tippett uses. I suspect switching between them and keeping opposing coaches guessing is a good thing. I definitely think strong criticisms of Tippett for putting them together are over the top though.

pts2pndr

While I understand your point the reality is unless your top line can play half the five on five minutes per game giving the other team the 5 on 5 advantage for over half the game is not the formula for long term success! It would seem prudent given that Draisaitl with Nuge seems to stay at or above 50% to find two players for the best player in the NHL not named Draisaitl and Nuge to also be able to score above 50% at 5 on 5. Playing exhibition games with what you know works, keeping Draisaitl and McDavid together seems like wasting an opportunity to experiment with other combinations with Connor. Tippett may already have his top two lines figured out and is like OP alluded to, working on his preferred lineup when situationally loading up the top line, which is my hope/belief.

jp

While I understand your point the reality is unless your top line can play half the five on five minutes per game giving the other team the 5 on 5 advantage for over half the game is not the formula for long term success! 

This is a theory, not ‘the reality’.

Tests of the theory to this point show the opposite of what you’re saying (the Oilers goal differential last season, over 3 seasons, in the playoffs, has actually been better with Connor and Leon together vs apart).

And again, I’m not saying the Oilers should run the lines that way. I think they can be successful with either alignment. But it is not ‘reality’ that the Oilers are better with Connor and Leon on separate lines.

GordieHoweHatTrick

Ok. BUT now the team has better wingers to support their separation

The WOWY you show are also a function of the dregs of top6 wingers… right?

jp

Yes, but I believe improved winger depth would help Nuge as 2C just as much as McDavid or Draisaitl on their own lines.

jp

Interesting, from the Oilers site the lines at practice today were:

Draisaitl – McDavid – Puljujarvi
Hyman – Nugent-Hopkins – Yamamoto
Foegele – Ryan – Shore/Perlini
Benson – McLeod – Sceviour/Turris

This is different from what OP posted earlier, no idea which is more accurate.

Assuming these were the lines, I’m not sure what we can parse from them, if anything. But Shore/Perlini with the 3rd line and Sceviour/Turris with Benson-McLeod isn’t what I’d have expected.

Allowing just a little parsing, it genuinely hadn’t occurred to me that Shore could be the 3rd line replacement for Kassian.

OriginalPouzar

Condors shut out by the Heat 3-0. They have most of their opening night D in but sat many of their top forwards. Berglund and Broberg each had 4 shots on net.

Konovalov stopped 14 of 16 and Rodrigue 13 of 14.

Harpers Hair

Flames beat the Jets 2-1 and outshoot them 21-18.

Both teams with full NHL lineups.

Sutter hockey.

OriginalPouzar

Flames move to 2-4 in the exhibition season.

Treliving team building and Sutter hockey.

Harpers Hair

Oops 3-1 Flames.

leadfarmer

I also am very excited for the damage Sutter hockey is going to cause the Flames franchise

Redbird62

Three sentences and maybe the second one will be mostly correct, but otherwise a bunch of garbage. Truth really doesn’t matter to you does it. Hard to believe you were in the news media – then again maybe not.

DevilsLettuce

It was 3-1 for the Phlems, 1-1 5×5 play, with 2 ppg for the Phlems.

Same amount of shots with 23 each.

Ehlers played 10mins with 3 SOG before he left due to injury.

Sutter hockey would probably send Lucic to punch you in the mouth for getting the score wrong then praising his name. Let the Curse live on.

tsunami

HH post – Mostly wrong as usual

OriginalPouzar

Bulldogs score a late one to win it – Tulio was on the ice, no idea if he had any culpability. He finishes with the one assist, 4 shots and even in the 3-2 loss (2 for 5 in the faceoff circle).

Savoie picks up an assist so is 1G/1A about half way through (Pioneers lead 4-1).

OriginalPouzar

Check that, add another apple for Savoie: 1G/2A close to half way through the 2nd.

jp

Off to another hot start.

What a nice pickup at #100.

OriginalPouzar

“I’m trying to play the puck,” said a shrugging Tanev. “He’s on a partial breakaway, and I’m trying to get the puck. It’s obviously unfortunate that he gets tripped up and goes into the goalie, but anyone who’s watched me play knows I’m a pretty honest player. I take maybe three of four minors a year. I don’t think I’m going out there trying to hurt people.”

How about 9 and 15 minors the last two full seasons Chris……(and 2019/20 wasn’t even a full season,

90s fan

No doubt that all these guys are trying to play the puck. But they are often beat so thoroughly that playing the puck is a lost option to them.

Just accept that your beat.

If this happens I do think connor should put zero effort into protecting the goalie….

kgogshig

Agreed. If McDavid has to choose between crashing into a post or a big soft tendy…pick the tendy every time.

90s fan

We talk about load management not being needed with our young bucks. I think load managment with Smith is prudent.

OriginalPouzar

I think load management should be a thing with the younger guys as well.

With Smith, a week ago or so, Tip did expressly say he was looking for more of a split like they had two seasons ago (that running with Smith like last season).

Of course, how they each play will be highly determinative.

90s fan

Maybe. I am sure there is good science on recovery time required and age for the NHL. If there isn’t then I’d be shocked. It would be interesting to hear from an expert on the topic.

kgogshig

I’m not the expert you’re looking for…but I’m quite sure an expert chimed in on the subject a few years ago and said NHL players who play top minutes, based on the extreme exertion of multiple NHL shifts, can’t possibly get the rest and recovery needed based on their schedule.

AsiaOil

I would actually consider keeping a 3rd goalie up all year to relieve our starter of game day practice. Just like last year which worked out very well. Rotate all three young guys up for a few weeks and then back down to play. With Skinner I’d even give him a game during each short stint on the NHL roster to get him comfortable. Maybe even give Konvalov a game or two if he shows well in the AHL this year. Cap dictates that we absolutely must have a cheap young goalie on the roster next year. Best to start working on that now.

OriginalPouzar

I like the idea but not sure that sacrificing a skater roster spot is a good idea.

OriginalPouzar

Petrov was given an assist in last night’s game so he finished with 3G/1A last night, plus his goal today.

OriginalPouzar

Petrov finishes with the lone goal for North Bay in a 4-1 loss. Lazy tonight with just 3 shots but he was plus 1 despite the loss.

Reja

Is he on the first line and PP 1 give me some information on this kid it’s hard to find anything on him.

OriginalPouzar

One of his goals was on the PP.

OriginalPouzar

Oshawa finally breaks a scoreless tie early in the 3rd – Tulio with an apple (even strength).

OriginalPouzar

I believe this is the only exhibition game for the Condors:

Soderlund-Cracknell-Maksimov
Watts-Esposito-Hamblin
McPhee-Gennaro-Lavoie
Dickman-Brosseau-Kambeitz 

Broberg-Desharnies
Niemelainen-Berglund
Kemp-Kesselring
Kaldis

Konovalov
Rodrigue

Down 1-0 half way through the first.

jp

Well. They do not want Lavoie playing his off wing, clearly.

Interesting also that Broberg and Berglund aren’t playing together.

OriginalPouzar

Lavoie shoots right so he is on his natural side. Would have been pretty easy to put him as 1LW tonight.

I think Woody is trying to spread out the skill on a VERY meh forward group.

OriginalPouzar

Broberg and Berglund are running the PP, per Ryan Holt.

Konovalov gives way to Rodrigues after stopping 14 of 16.

jp

Yeah, given that Lavoie was on the 3rd line, and the players on the left side we might have expected him over there. We’ll see what happens in season.

On Broberg and Berglund, I wonder if Woodcroft thinks that’s the optimal alignment? Or if he’s trying to push Broberg out of his comfort zone? Or just trying to get everyone familiar before the season?

OriginalPouzar

I have no idea what Woody/Manson were trying to accomplish in this game – given the forward deployment (and who was in the lineup).

With Deharnais listed as 1RD, maybe he was trying to get game time for those that weren’t up playing games with the big club? Hence why so many key forwards weren’t playing?

jp

Yes, that definitely makes sense in terms of who was in the lineup.

OriginalPouzar

Carter Savoie, with a 5 on 5 goal to tie the game at one mid-way through the first period.

OriginalPouzar

Not quite the lazer we often see from Savoie but he buried it from his off wing:

https://twitter.com/DU_Hockey/status/1446648357930237956

OriginalPouzar

Engrass scores to put N. Hampshire up 4-1 in the third. 1G/1A, 3 shots, 12-3 in the faceoff circle.

OriginalPouzar

Konovalov and Skinner will split the game tonight.

Savoie lines up as 1LW with Guttman a d Brink. Interesting to see how he does on his offside.

OriginalPouzar

Filip Engras has picked up an assist on the go-ahead goal as N. Hampshire has a 2-1 lead going in to the third.

Of note, he’s 10 wins and 1 loss in the faceoff circle as of now.

Harpers Hair

Have you looked at Michigan’s lineup?

4 first round picks and a few later picks.

They might be good.

BornInAGretzkyJersey

In other news, organizational prospect had a good game against stiff competition.

Your framing needs work with respect to the intended audience.

jp

I believe he’s on point in re: his intended goal.

Ice Sage

I don’t think he’s from an era where it’s respectful to ‘read the room’.

OriginalPouzar

I don’t consider Skyler BrindAmour a “real prospect” at all so won’t generally be providing updates but he did have 1G/1A in a 3-2 SO loss.

M. Petrov has scored early in the 2nd – his fourth of the year. North Bay trails 2-1

McSorley33

General Impressions of New Oilers:

Warren Foegle:

Not seeing a ton from Foeggle. He has certainly not been bad. But seems a bit vanilla.
he probably turns it up a gear next week.

Derek Ryan:

Impressed. Hound on the puck. Love the Pursuit.

Keith:

Pretty shaky so far. Did seem to get better as game went on…likely saving it for
the start of the season. Still a heady player.

Ceci:

I am not seeing a lot from him as a ‘top 4 D’….I know it is early. But just not seeing
the speed and agility to defend. With the puck on his stick – he is okay.

McSorley33

Ceci had three shots, took a penalty, and was less effective at holding off roaring Canucks heading into the corner and net front. He got his money’s worth on the slash. 
******************************************

Lost a foot race to Alex Chiasson.

Alex Chiasson

Thought I had seen everything in this league….

Codi Ceci.

Barrie started out real slow last year so – we will be patient.

But….not sure how Ceci is going to survive the speed of top 6 attacking talent.



Last edited 7 days ago by McSorley33
Bank Shot

I remember Larsson getting turnstiled a couple of times at the beginning of last season too.

OriginalPouzar

He survived it very well the last two seasons, as least as far as GA/60 shows.

jp

But….not sure how Ceci is going to survive the speed of top 6 attacking talent.

He played top 4 in Toronto in 19-20 and was -1 at 5v5.

He played top 4 half the season in Pittsburgh last season and was +13 at 5v5.

Calm your tits! 🙂

McSorley33

Nuge still looking for his first 5 on 5 point.

Sounds like the idea of him Centering line 2 might not work out ….

But, at least that McDavid line 1 could get going with Leon playing wing.

Last edited 7 days ago by McSorley33
OriginalPouzar

He’s played 14 minutes at 5 on 5 away from Leon (so at center) and:

1) Two games ago, he was the best non-McDavid/Drai forward at evens. At least I thought so and wrote as such in my game grades (which you agreed with); ad

2) He scored last game at 5 on 5 (and he goalie interference was very questionable in my opinion – if there was any contract, is was nominal).

I think Nuge has been good in those 14 minutes at 2C.

Scungilli Slushy

IMO if Hyman is the winger for Connor when Leon isn’t, they need to find the right wingers for Nuge.

He has never been a play driver. He has never been a strong 5v5 scorer even in junior.

He has been moved to wing and to me his game has been disrupted over the last few seasons.

A good manager plays players to their strengths. Nuge is too vanilla for wing. He’s better at C with the right help, being responsible and better using what he has which is thinking the game and stealing pucks and setting up.

Give Nuge some skating big good shooting wingers with a clue and he’ll be good.

I would not play him with Yama. I agree move Kailer up with Drai and Connor and JP down with Hyman and Nuggie or whatever.

Finding two top lines that can be switched up would be gold.

Mess opponent match ups, or kick start when things get stale.

The thing with playing Connor with Leon is if they don’t really trust their counterpart they start forcing plays to each other and get more defendable.

Sometimes on PP as well.

flyfish1168

When Zack feels better I would put him with Leon and Connor.

Reja

i would load up Perlini while he’s on a heater with Leon and Connor have Nuge Centre Hyman and JP drop Yama down to the third line with Ryan and Foegele.

RonnieB

Ok. Let’s see how many minuses I can rack up with these comments.

How many times can a coach repeat the same mistakes before a GM inserts himself and says uh, no! The Oilers have 2 of the top 5 or 10 centers in the world. Playing them together, except in special circumstances, turns the Oilers into an eminently stoppable 1 line team. Case in point, last night Connor and Leon both scored 1-1-2 on the PP and nothing at even strength; all of Leon’s SOG came on the PP.
Nuge, as lovable and useful as he may be otherwise, is no longer a top 6 NHL center (likely hasn’t been since he played between Hall and Eberle). He struggles to get above 44% in the faceoff circle and generates little or no offense from the center at even strength.
The Nuge-McDavid pairing didn’t work spectacularly well last season, but Nuge-Leon sings.
The Hyman acquisition gives the Oilers 2 solid top lines although I am of the opinion that the KY spot is a weak link, especially in playoff-style games.

Holland, after dealing with the mess left by PC, has spent like a drunken sailor to build a contending team while simultaneously re-tightening a multi-year financial noose around it. This is the team we have!. It’s time for the coach to let it work.

GordieHoweHatTrick

I gave you a “+” BUT I think Nuge can still play 2C okay. I think he would be fine with JP +

My hopes are Tipp is just “messing around”, but your primary argument to keep McD and Drai separate unless “in case of emergency” is a very logical one.

McSorley33

Not sure he ( RNH) did well playing 2C last year….maybe with Hyman and JP/Yam he could. But I wouldn’t bet a lot of money on it.

meanashell11

I have been screaming square peg, round hole since Eakins was here. Why coaches continue to insist on their system instead of playing to players strengths I have no idea. Dumb asses.

OriginalPouzar

1) I personally agree and believe it would be a big mistake to play Leon and McDavid together from the start of games – I’ve explained my position and it surround (a) it takes away an important (and dynamic) in-game coaching strategy and (b) I find them to be more effective in short spurts, in particular defensively as, anecdotally, they press and start to make defensive mistakes and turnovers over time.

2) Notwithstanding what I (or any of us) think is a “coaching mistake” that is just our opinion and I presume that, in aggregate, Dave Tippett makes more “correct” coaching decisions than any of us would

3) Most importantly, I am hopeful that that the plan is to have them on seperate lines come Wednesday night at 7 pm (mountain) and that he is still looking at options for in behind them when he does load up situationally (i.e. Yamamoto with Nuge/Hyman as opposed to Turris).

I won’t be happy if they are together at 5 on 5 from the start of Game 1 on Wed (although, as per two above, would hope the coach, being the professional, is making the “right” decision).

Kert

1(a) Playing them apart takes away an important (and dynamic) in-game coaching strategy of playing them apart. Is this a reasonable counter point to?

What you’re tabling sounds like kids cartoon logic of saving your secret technique for when hope is lost, then turning the tides. In the real world, wouldn’t it be better if you just started the fight in your final form? (That comes across harsher than I want it to.)

1(b) If offensive frustration leads defensive mistakes and turnovers, anecdotally, wouldn’t playing with lesser linemates lead to greater levels of frustration? We’ve certainly seen Draisaitl trying to do too much on his own when things aren’t working.

2) I agree, Tippett is a better coach than I am. But even people at the highest levels make mistakes. If we couldn’t be critical of these people’s choices, we wouldn’t have a lot to discuss.

3) Most importantly, I am hopeful that the plan is to ice the line up in the way that gives them the best chance of winning. Maybe that’s rolling 97-29 together for a 66% goal share, now that we have the depth for the rest of the team to be hopefully over 50% goal share instead of 35%.
Last season I think 97 away from 29 was around a 50% goal share. That seems like a waste of 97 at 5v5. Maybe the depth means he’ll get that number back up to something more McDavid like.
Either way I think it’ll be a winning strategy.

Harpers Hair

2) Is not entirely clear at this point.

Kert

Ha!
HH, I’m sure you’ve put some thought into what deployment of 97 and 29 would make the Oilers a worse team. What’d you prefer Tippett do? Together or apart?

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

2) is completely irrelevant … no one on this blog is applying for the Oil head coaching position. The correct question would be does Tip make more “correct” coaching decisions than his NHL counterparts. I have my doubts. I would wager that few NHL head coaches lose any sleep over the possibility of being outcoached by Dave Tippett.

Decidedly Skeptical Fan

Only one more year until the beginning of the Woodcroft era. It can’t come soon enough.

OriginalPouzar

McLeod says he needs to use his body more. Yes, Ryan, most watching agree but aren’t seeing it (although I did see one solid body battle in open ice last night where he came away with the puck).

McLeod specifically mentioned finishing more checks (which I agree with on the forecheck).

Tip was asked about it and agreed although he said he doesn’t need to “hit” more but be stronger on the puck and be stronger in battle.

This shouldn’t be a surprise to the player, presumably this has been the message since draft day. With that said, there is an express verbal acknowledgement from the player and the head coach. Whether he starts the season in the AHL or NHL I look for an increase in his battle level.

Last edited 7 days ago by OriginalPouzar
GordieHoweHatTrick

He is the most logical cut at this moment. Go to Bake.

McNuge93

I agree. And then when there is an injury or if Turris or Shore start to fade bring him back up. But 20 games in the AHL wouldnt hurt him at all.

hunter1909

THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING! THE SKY IS FALLING!

go here:

http://www.oilersdeathmarch.com/marches/2021-22

Oilers Death March™

“You Love it Really”

Last edited 7 days ago by hunter1909
OriginalPouzar

Just like McDavid with Canada, Drai one of the three names to Team Germany – huge shock!

OriginalPouzar

Holloway and Samorukov both skated today – nothing real earthbreaking there given the nature of their injuries – upper body.

OriginalPouzar

Daniel Nugent-Bowman
@DNBsports
·
6m
Dave Tippett says Zack Kassian will enter concussion protocol for a few days. He says the bump on Kassian’s head has gone down. He’s hopeful they’ve dodged something serious.

leadfarmer

I hope they shut him down for a couple of weeks. Its not like its his first head injury

OriginalPouzar

I don’t really agree with comments like this personally. I mean, I get them, and I agree that caution should always be taken, however, I expect the doctors to take such caution and, if they clear him after 1 week or a couple of days (or whatever shorter time frame is required) then he should be cleared.

As we’ve seen many times, sometimes it looks way worse than it is – Khaira for example, many thought he should be shut down for the year and were upset when he was activated – he is fine and as physical as always.

If he doesn’t need a couple of weeks, he doesn’t need it – of course, presuming the doctors are doing their job properly.

Shane

But OP, that’s factually incorrect. Khaira suffered a second concussion last year from a hit just a few weeks after the concussion he sustained during the fight with Ritchie. So no he wasn’t ‘fine and as physical as always’

I trust doctors to do the best job to their ability. But what if their ability is hampered by something that medical science just doesn’t have surrounded yet..?

OriginalPouzar

I believe the intel that came out later was that his 2nd injury was not a concussion and there isn’t any actual evidence that he came back to soon. I note that he was’t out for all that long after the 2nd injury (and the calls for him to retire be shut down for the season), he’s been fine since and, at least for the rest of his tenure as an Oiler, he was just as physical as always (by my eye and via hit rates on NST).

I equate calling for Khaira to be shut down/retire is essentially the same for calling for Kassian to be out for a minimum amount of time – its based on no actual information – that information is, of course, available to the team and their medical experts.

He may need weeks (or months), I have no idea, but neither does anyone else on here (presumably).

Shane

That intel seems very suspect to me seeing as we all saw Khaira wobbly leg skating all the way back to the bench. Are you suggesting he wasn’t concussed there?

I never called for his being shut down for the year or for him to retire. I’ve always taken the stance that doctors, while being highly educated and trust worthy, simply just do not know enough about this type of injury yet.

I won’t go into my past history again. But I will say that two weeks ago I had some reoccurring symptoms pop up again. And I realized that it’s likely that I get them more than I notice now. My injury happened on Aug 7th 2020…

It seems that you’re suggesting that medical science has this thing surrounded and we know exactly how to treat and recover from brain injuries at this time…

OriginalPouzar

Maybe the intel is suspect but I’ll take the organization’s word for it and I don’t imagine that the organization was throwing caution to the wind to get JJ Khaira back in the lineup.

I don’t for a second think that the medical world has concussions and head injuries surrounded but I do think that the Oilers and their medical staff do take head injuries very seriously and are ensuring they aren’t putting players at risk – to the best of their abilities.

I trust everything you say about your history with concussions, as well as anyone else’s personal experience. I also do not equate any particular person’s experience with anyone others. I’m sorry but, to me, the timeline that you required has zero consequence in what I or Zack Kassian or Eric Lindros may require.

None of us have any real way to know – the Oilers medical staff, on the other hand, are in the best position to make that determination.

leadfarmer

As someone that has suffered concussion and two subsequent ones very soon afterwards I strongly disagree with this statement.
the player is gonna push to play as I’m sure he’s gonna want to. the team doctors want him playing as soon as able as well. We’ve just started unlocking the long term effects of concussions.
anyone that suffered a concussion playing contact sports should be shut down for two weeks minimum IMO. The risk of another concussion and symptoms that don’t immediately present themselves is just too high. 2 weeks is just a drop in the bucket for long term health

OriginalPouzar

OK, we’ll disagree then.

With respect, I will trust the team doctors to make the correct decision (with the player’s health as the only determining factor) and will put stock in to the timeline and updates provided by the medical staff and not, what seem to be arbitrary, timelines proposed online by those that saw the incident and have no other actual information.

Faustkarz

I mean the NHL (and other leagues) are under fire for their treatment of injuries, and more specifically head injuries. Fully appealing to authority in this situation doesn’t pass imo.

OriginalPouzar

Even more reason to believe that they are not rushing players back prior to readiness and are proceeding with caution.

Shane

Well then OP, just so we’re clear, you just disagreed with a doctor. One that has suffered the injury themselves. And one that isn’t on the OEG company payroll..

OriginalPouzar

and that is fine – I respect your opinion as a doctor and your personal experience.

I will still take the advise of the doctors and medical experts that are actually evaluating the player with the injury – with respect.

SkatinginSand

Robin Lehner’s allegations would lead the conclusion that long term player health is not the highest priority for some team doctors.

OriginalPouzar

Lines and pairings at Oilers practice: 
Draisaitl-McDavid-Puljujarvi
Hyman-RNH-Yamamoto
Foegele-Ryan-Sceviour
Perlini-Shore-Turris
(Benson and McLeod rotating in)

Nurse-Barrie
Keith-Ceci
Koekkoek-Bouchard
Lagesson-Russell

Koskinen
Skinner

————-

Not going to lie to you, I’m a bit “concerned” that Tip may be contemplating starting McDavid/Drai together on opening night.

Going in to last night, I was of the presumption that he was just doing some experimenting to see what might work in behind them during load-up situations.

Maybe that is still the case and he is looking to see what that 2nd line looks like with Kailer there (as opposed to Turris).

Here is hoping.

Cassandra

Putting Draisatl and McDavid together is the right move. The issue is playing them with Puljujarvi, who is too good to be the third wheel.

If you flipped Yamamoto and Puljujarvi you could have two dominant line instead of one.

JimmyV1965

I endorse this

GordieHoweHatTrick

I third this

Darth Tu

Yeah, I like the idea of running Yamo with Drai and McDavid and giving Nuge two big gun wingers.

I was looking at a way of sticking Foegele LW on the Nuge line, but I like what I’ve seen with Foegele with Ryan so far, and with Kassian out it’s probably better to keep those two together on the 3rd line.

Benson. Man, I really, really wanted you to succeed but he’s looking increasingly like a Lander type player – dominant in the AHL but not quite there at the NHL. Still, if he breaks camp as the 13th forward that’s just fine, maybe he can still play his way into the conversation as the season goes on and injuries/suspensions happen.

Turris has won me over again, he’s not what he was, but he’s looking to be worth his contract (for this season). If he can play 3rd and 4th line minutes and not give up much (looking at you last season) then that’s gravy.

McLeod I think can get there, but let’s send him back to push the AHL again for a bit and get his confidence up before we bring him up.

Reja

I would go with the hot hand Perlini with Connor and Leon and move JP down to the 2nd line. With Yamo I would move him out of the top 6 to the 3rd line where he belongs for now.

Numenius

Cassandra, I seem to remember the experiment with Drai/McD/Yamamoto didn’t work well last year, which is why Tip didn’t continue with it.

Last edited 7 days ago by Numenius
McSorley33

McDavid is pretty good.

Who C’s line 2?

OriginalPouzar

I don’t agree that its the “right move” and, really, there probably is not “right and wrong” – its not that black and white.

To me, the in-game coaching strategy of loading them up situationally is too important and simply playing them together from the start takes away that strategy and, to me, its a non-starter most of the time.

McSorley33

Who is centering line 2?

Paul Maurice and others would like to know…

pts2pndr

Playing two of the best 6 centers in the league on the same line without a quality center for the second line is inexcusable. To load up for the power play and or late in the game when trailing by a goal is acceptable. Until the coach has sufficient talent for a quality second line it is in my opinion extremely short sighted and a misuse of resources! The playoffs last year are an example.

OriginalPouzar

I agree that its not the “right approach” and I remain hopeful that (a) Dave Tippett agrees and is currently experimenting for load up situations or (b) if the foregoing is not the case, I am wrong and Tip is right.

At the same time, the additions of Foegele and Ryan are looking to do as hoped, create a legit non-McDavid/Drai 3rd line that can create and maintain momentum and score/defend (i.e. outscore) and, of course, with the likes of Hyman, Nuge and one of Jesse/Kailer, the makings of a legit 2nd line.

No, Nuge doesn’t “drive offence” but that doesn’t mean he can’t be a legit 2C surrounded by other talent. What do people expect a 2C to produce, I think the expectation is out of line with reality. Pius Sutter had the 60th most 5 on 5 points for center (listed on NST) last season with a whopping 20 points in a 56 game season – I’m going to guess some of those listed centers also played wing, not center.

Nuge has a very poor 5 on 5 season last year but I anticipate he produces well within a 2C range this season (and has in the past).

With respect to his exhibition season results, I note that (a) its been 14 minutes, (b) he has been VERY good in most of those (setting up numerous plays in his first game) and (c) arguably should be credited with a 5 on 5 goal last game (chincy wave-off).

Given him Hyman (not Kahun, not Ennis) and Jesse or Kailer – that line should be a legit NHL 2nd line that outscores.

TheGreatBigMac

This is the fun part we have forward depth, so many options that could legitimately work!

Hopefully Tip strikes the right balance between trying stuff out, going with what works, giving guys a chance to figure it out and not being stubborn when a preferred configuration isn’t working.

If we keep the top line, I’d like to see this at some point:

Foegele Nuge Hyman
Perlini Ryan Yamamoto

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I find myself caring less and less about how Tip chooses to proceed with the lines. I just want to see results. I.e. winning games with multiple lines contributing at 5v5.

Last edited 8 days ago by Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve
Shane

Amen Uncle Steve!

Messier11

I agree, just win, and I won’t care who plays where.

OriginalPouzar

Well, yes, ultimately all I care about is positive results as well but I (and others) have opinions on how deployment will (or will not) drive those results.

Shane

Yep, that’s fine. Of course, it’s also fine for other people to pop in and say their opinion even if it is ‘I don’t care what the lines are just win baby!’.

godot10

Team #BoyWonderCroft
Team Woody

It a long way to Tippettary, and my heart ain’t there.

McSorley33

Dave likes Checkers.

McSorley33

We were repeatedly re-assured in here that Tippett would never load up his 1 line again after the humiliating playoff loss to a much denigrated Jets team.

OriginalPouzar

I remain hopeful that Tippett is still simply experimenting and finding options for when he decides to go load-up situationally.

OriginalPouzar

Yamamoto on the ice for practice. No Kassian.

No Smith either and I anxiously await intel from Tip that it’s scheduled rest as I’ve expressed my concern that Smith has already showed fatigue and needed extra time off.

YYCOil

Tyler Benson should make the club as a 13/14 forward. I believe the goal for him would be to play in 40 ish NHL games, in a 3/4th line role. He has done enough over the last 3+ years to get that chance.

leadfarmer

Francouz is out for a month already.
I just don’t get why Sakic is betting his season on two often broken goalies

if I’m GM I’m calling about Oetinger. Young cheap, stashable, and high upside
probably not happy about being in a 4 headed goalie monster

defmn

I agree that those are all good reasons why a team would want him but I fear they are also the reasons why Nill laughs when other GM’s ask about him.

I have to admit them signing Holtby was one of the more perplexing moves made by any team this past summer. The price tag was even more curious.

leadfarmer

Even if Bishop isn’t ready for any of the season they were already cover with Khudobin and Otter

defmn

Yup. As I said, I found the signing a very strange use of cap space.

rich tm

Can’t see Nill trading Oetinger, but Khudobin could be the play here.

GordieHoweHatTrick

Keith looked much more dialed in for G2 than G1. Looking forward to seeing some more games to provide a better assessment of where he is at…for the next 2 years.

Watching players lay unconscious on the ice is gut wrenching. As he lay there, I wondered how relatively recent events will influence Kass’s career. His last 3 fights have been a struggle and he has been significantly injured in the last 2. As a 30 year-old father, I wonder if his game changes in the months ahead. For now I hope for his sake he is not being stubborn (I get the impression he may not want to show weakness!) and getting a full medical evaluation and to make sure he gets the necessary time off for a full recovery. If he goes to LTIR, I wonder how that affects the roster construction for the start of the season…

Reja

Unfortunately for Kass he’s the only Oiler besides Nurse who will drop the gloves so players will target him. It gets harder to play on the edge which makes Kass effective in your 30’s especially for a meaningless exhibition game. The Canucks have been playing the Oilers dirty for awhile now. Its time to target Hughes, Pettersson and go hard into Demko and settle Travis Green the fuk down.

pts2pndr

Amen my brother! It’s unfortunately the only thing an opposition coach will understand. Have McLeod play man to man with Pettersson and have him hit him every time he touches the puck! Completely legal but should get the message across. Give Pettersson the same treatment a number of teams use on Connor!

Shane

Well, McLeod would have to learn how to hit first 😉

BornInAGretzkyJersey

LOL yeah, and not get torched while playing three lines above his established level of competition.

pts2pndr

Touché! Small bumps in the direction of the boards at speed. Baby steps! Lol

fishman

McLeod is so NOT the guy for that assignment!

pts2pndr

Foegle would have been my first choice but I didn’t want to risk losing him to possible suspension.

Scungilli Slushy

This was one reason I was not too convinced Koekkoek was a great signing.

Tampa had to beef up for the same reason. The Oilers only have Kassian up front and Nurse who shouldn’t be fighting much or at all. Too important.

Tampa has an enormous defensive group now. So if you want to mix it up your tussling with a behemoth, fighter or not. They picked up Perry, kept Maroon around.

The Oilers already had Barrie who is small and non physical, Russell who is really small, Keith who is more dirty than a glove dropper, Bouch who is still under 200 pounds and not scrappy.

Ceci career wise doesn’t get many PIMs so isn’t overly physical and not a fighter. I would have looked far and wide for a competent mean 6/7 LD that could be in the face of those that take the old school ‘run the Oilers’ tactic.

I also hope Holland is using his cred and making calls. If posters here can show the Oilers are historically being shorted on PPs, he should be pressuring Bettman or whomever.

Kassian’s injury is a great talking point for that. If the refs do their jobs there isn’t a need to defend the goalie, and it was necessary given what butt head was getting away with. The result speaks for itself.

There is a difference in playing hard in a physical sport, and crossing the line and being dangerous.

Like when it was ‘ok’ that Pionk could grab McDavid by the collar and pull his jersey a foot down last the playoffs, repeatedly, puck in the area not necessary. Call the rules!

Scungilli Slushy

The issue with Koekkoek being he is listed at 193 lbs, a pretty slight fella at his height especially for a 6/7 D, not a help in the ruffian department the Oilers lack despite being a bigger team than last year.

Reja

I like Tippett but if he doesn’t see a need to protect Connor and Leon sooner or later they’ll be on the IR. Hyman and Foegele as well as Keith can take care of themselves. We need a asshole in the top 9 that will get the Oilers pound of flesh if they purposely try to hurt Connor and Leon who’s been taking more and more abuse.

OriginalPouzar

Reja

 Reply to Scungilli Slushy

 October 8, 2021 2:18 pm

I like Tippett but if he doesn’t see a need to protect Connor and Leon sooner or later they’ll be on the IR. Hyman and Foegele as well as Keith can take care of themselves. We need a asshole in the top 9 that will get the Oilers pound of flesh if they purposely try to hurt Connor and Leon who’s been taking more and more abuse.

There is no such player that will change the way opposition players defend, and play against, McDavid and Drai. Lucic on the team (and on the line) did not. Kassian on the team (and on the line) did not.

Teams need to be hard to play against, which the Oilers have lots of players that are, but having guys that are willing to fight simply does not change the way the opposition plays.

We’ve see this.

Its not 1983 any more.

—————————-

To the original post, with respect to size of the defence the Oilers defence is setting up to be absolutely massive going forward. Keith, Russell, Koekooek are likely here for 1-2 years each and the Condors’ defensive group is MASSIVE:

Broberg
Samorukov
Niemelainen
Kemp
Kesselring
Berglund

That is a massive group.

Scungilli Slushy

I also don’t believe you protect talent completely with a heavyweight. But I have heard numerous NHL players say that if you have them it does affect what the other team will do or try.

If you can’t push back they will ‘run around’. It happened to the Oilers for years because the top players had no push back of their own and the goons were never on the ice with the good players.

Lucic didn’t stop McDavid from getting hurt, but in general teams played the Oilers less dirty with him around than before as I saw it. A lot less. i also think Lucic did a poor job at what he was brought in for, he picked his spots a lot. Still does. He was/is past his pyscho youth like Kass might be.

Connor Drai Hyman JP have enough jam that they can get back at guys without necessarily fighting. Especially as they are all hitting their man strength.

Butt Canucklehead obviously thought he could act with impunity. It would be great if the Oilers would start running the other goalie and players to get back, I think it would be more effective than fighting.

As for the Oilers bigger D that are in the system, they are tall but not big guys, at least yet. And only Samu appears to be mean, which is actually the key. Nobody messes with Keith much for a reason. He can be nasty.

It will be years before they will be old enough to become as hard as what I think the Oilers could use, or even be on the NHL team for many, which is why I think the roster would benefit from a few crusty players that can play in the fringe roster spots.

Of course Holland was constrained again by the cap and what those players are making these days. A guy like Shore needs to throw it around and get in faces if things are heating up. Perlini Turris Benson Ryan Koekkoek Russell McLeod etc aren’t the types as it stands. Maybe Foegele has some edge, we’ll see. A pretty tame bottom 6, and D outside of Nurse and Keith.

dustrock

I really felt Kassian’s game had already changed and he wasn’t the “hmm this guy’s a little nuts and I don’t know what to expect” player he used to be. I am not at Godot-levels of dislike but I think the contract was a mistake, he eased up as soon as the ink was dry and I don’t blame him, most people don’t want to play high-risk hockey. Unfortunately without that element I think he’s a replacement level player. Hope he is healthy soon.

GordieHoweHatTrick

I fully agree his game took a massive turn right after the ridiculous contract. It was already trending that way.
i am speculating here that he may be MOAR done after having his face smashed in…and having kids often changes the risks people are willing to take.

as pointed out, the oil now has limited physical deterrents. JJ is gone. Kass is …
and no one wants to see nurse fight since any injury to him is pretty much a death knell to the season. Although I do like seeing him scrap!

OriginalPouzar
Reja

How many goals would he have to score for North Bay this season to be considered a late round steal at the draft? Does he play on the PP1?

hunter1909

HUnter1909’s Death March™ Returns for a Last Possible Season

http://www.oilersdeathmarch.com/marches/2021-22

Subscribe Here

Thank You For Your Cooperation

hunter1909

It looks like we have a critic!

Shane

.

Last edited 8 days ago by Shane
MushedPeas

Rolled with the optimism. Has never not paid off for me as a fan 😏

OriginalPouzar

Condors preseason tonight plus a full slate of college and CHL action. Yes!

Also, in addition to 3 goals and 8 shots, Petrov did this:

https://twitter.com/ohlbattalion/status/1446283272519049216?s=21

Kert

Are you going to watch/report on any of it? (assuming something will be streaming)

OriginalPouzar

I just checked and the Condors’ exhibition games are NOT on AHL TV – I will see if I can find a stream but my guess is there will not be any video to report on.

I am likely to tune in to one of the games tonight – maybe the Pioneers.

ArmchairGM

Full highlights here: https://ontariohockeyleague.com/gamecentre/24786/boxscore

He could’ve had an empty netter too, if his center would have passed it to him. In any case, that 3rd goal looked for all the world like a reverse Draisaitl PP goal – from down near the goal line.

Litke 94

From the Blackhawks:

MEDICAL UPDATES: Defenseman Caleb Jones is expected to miss approximately six weeks (left wrist strain).

OriginalPouzar

If I’m not mistaken, and I might be, he was battling for a lineup spot at camp – looking like a 6/7 guy – just like in Edmonton

jp

Looks like he had played well in camp and was expected to play 3LD prior to the injury.

https://theathletic.com/news/blackhawks-defenseman-caleb-jones-out-6-weeks-with-wrist-injury/fHdEIRMHPUn1

Randle McMurphy

As for the Tanev trip of McDavid (and many other non-calls) I wonder if the Officials view McDavid’s play as reckless and that he is therefore creating his own problems???

I mean what other explanation is there? The trip was clearly visible even at such a high speed.

31saves

I think that’s about it in as many words

“Well how else are they going to stop him? Maybe he shouldn’t fly into the net like that”

Poor decision making process but it is a process.

pts2pndr

Years of tradition unhampered by progress blame the victim!

Kert

There’s this explanation: Refs think giving teams get 3 powerplays per game means they are doing their job correctly by not influencing the outcome of the game. 3 per game per team is ‘fair’ and makes their jobs easier. They don’t want to start calling something correctly after years of calling it incorrectly, it is like admitting a mistake.

Most people know that isn’t fair and that isn’t the purpose of officials and that heavily influences the outcome of the game.

Can you imagine a different game managed by NHL refs? Chess for example? “Well, Nepo is down a piece and low on time, so he’s going to try moving his pawn like a queen to get himself back in the match.”

YYCOil

When you drop $1000 a game for 4 clubs seats and THEN parking, beer and food. I hope the league remembers the fans are there to see the stars do spectacular things at high speeds. 30 year old veterans water skiing, hooking, slashing and tripping should be reserved for the Donnan Arena’ 10:00 -11:30 pm game

leadfarmer

I know our roster isnt perfect but looking at the leafs entire left wing and bottom 6 I dont see a top 5 team there

Randle McMurphy

You have to love Jack Campbell’s story.

He will be the key to the Leaf’s season imo.

leadfarmer

True and while I like him they invested a lot in Mrazek

ArmchairGM

I wonder how much Matthews / Marner will be affected by the loss of Hyman? Over the past 2 seasons at 5v5:

Matthews with Hyman: 1.88 G/60 and 3.11 P/60
Matthews w/o Hyman: 1.63 G/60 and 2.38 P/60

Matthews with Hyman: 62.82GF% and 58.94 xGF% with 53.83 O-zone start%
Matthews w/o Hyman: 60.71 GF% and 56.35 xGF% with 63.45 O-zone start%

AM’s point production takes a significant hit when he doesn’t have Hyman with him. His GF% and xGF% take smaller hits, but when you consider zone starts too it becomes noticeable. The effect is even more pronounced with Mitch Marner:

Marner with Hyman: 1.03 G/60 and 3.18 P/60
Marner w/o Hyman: 0.63 G/60 and 2.15 P/60

Marner with Hyman: 60.23 GF% and 56.85 xGF% with 49.42 O-zone start%
Marner w/o Hyman: 51.19 GF% and 55.97 xGF% with 60.77 O-zone start%

I’m not saying Hyman was driving this line (clearly he wasn’t) but his play style really enhances the skill player’s ability to do their thing. Perhaps one of the new guys can do just as well, but we don’t know just yet. Toronto has lost more than just Hyman’s goals from that line.

LadiesloveSmid

All situations xG was 5.46 – 3.11 Oilers

Smith had a good game, Halak had a better game.

flea

Oilers had numerous close calls and some awkward saves from Halak.

DevilsLettuce

I have a real hard time believing this stat clearly states Halak had a better game.

Smith was full value last night in all aspects, if Halak was handling the puck like Smith, would that of swayed Vancouver’s abilities to win?

His 3rd period sealed the victory.

17 SOG and not a single one went by him.

LadiesloveSmid

Maybe with Smith’s passing on Halak’s stick, xG would have been 5.2 – 3.5

BornInAGretzkyJersey

Never understood why people will trumpet xG as a be all end all stat.

It’s riddled with assumptions, varies from site to site, and doesn’t address the most simple factors that are obvious (EG treating a shot by Reaves from the slot equal to Ovechkin, whether they get full torque on it or not, was/wasn’t screened, was/wasn’t bouncing, etc) to even the most basic observer.

Side

And yet, to quote the wise words of Nathan MacKinnon:

“I’m going into my ninth year next year and I haven’t won shit.”

The 9th time is the charm, so they say.

Randle McMurphy

From Elliot Freidman’s 32 Thoughts, Nathan MacKinnon on last season’s Colorado/Vegas series, which the Avalanche lost after leading 2-0: “We beat them in Game 2 but they dominated us in the second and third (periods), and I remember thinking, ‘Ooof.’ …our whole thing is the process. And that process that game was so bad…In Games 3-4 they dominated us and we got hesitant… No one really wanted the puck, no one wanted to make mistakes….When things get tough, it’s the playoffs, teams are going to have good games, we are going to have to stop the bleeding a little bit quicker than (we did).” All credit to Vegas, they were great. Even in Game 5, we’re up 2-0 going into the third period. Couple of mistakes, they tie the game and win it in OT. And then in Game 6, I think we outshot them 40-20 or something, it was just too late. They had all the momentum on their side. It’s just too bad, because you think you can win, you want it so bad, it’s frustrating.” 

Harpers Hair

Maybe the 7th time will be a charm for McDavid if the Oilers can win a playoff game.

Bank Shot

Keep crying Ponyboy

PennersPancakes

Maybe 52nd time the Charm for the Canucks if they can win the Stanely Cup.

Side

More whataboutism.

But since you mention it, McDavid actually got to game 7 in the 2nd round in 2016.

Did you lose your glasses on your head again?

tsunami

no he is just talking bs as usual… not surprising at all lol

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

Losing Saad and Donskoi will hurt, especially when Kadri inevitably gets suspended in game 1 of the playoffs.

leadfarmer

And yet their entire season hinges on two goalies made of glass who make Smith look young and heathy

Harpers Hair

As Dom’s model clearly shows, that team could win it all with even below average goaltending.

31saves

They might be forced to

PennersPancakes

Last year was their year, this year is their year. They’re a worst team this season than last. If you go by Doms Model Saad was 1.1 wins, Donskoi 1.6, and Grubs 2. Some big shoes to fill.

Funny you say that because in the playoffs the Avs have a save % of:

  • 2021: .914
  • 2020: .907
  • 2019: .925
  • 2018: .905

Despite bad goaltending, medicore goaltending, and 1 postseason of good goaltending the almighty gods of the NHL cant make the conference final. As history shows theyve still been shy at least 9 wins of winning it all with this version of the team.

PennersPancakes

And theyre doing all this medicore post season success with the best contract in the NHL! With Mackinnon on a contract worth half his value, their captain on the end of a longterm value deal, as well as a norris finalist on the ELC!

Shame shame shame.

leadfarmer

And the last two playoffs show that they can’t 🤷‍♂️

BornInAGretzkyJersey

And what would be the batting average of Dom’s vaunted model?

(Asking for a friend, who doesn’t subscribe to The Athletic.)

DevilsLettuce

Lol Colorado is one losing streak away from MacKinnon murdering his team.

The one thing they’ve won is your creepy goal posts.

31saves

They’re one bad period away from losing all dessert privileges

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

This is a great post.

OriginalPouzar

For Sakic’s sake, here is hoping his team finally lives up to expectations – coming up o a decade as the GM (and longer in the front office) his playoff record is nothing short of a list of disappointments – even after the multiple high high 1st round picks after building a generationally bad regular season team.

Anything short of the SCF likely leads to Sakic being replaced.

Brogan Rafferty's Uncle Steve

I am not sure if you are trolling the troll here. If so, well done.

Realistically, Sakic is not going anywhere. He has built a great team. It is very hard to win in the NHL. Plus, Sakic is a god to the Avs organization. I think he stays on as long as he wants.

OriginalPouzar

Realistically he isn’t going anywhere, I agree.

At the same time, his record during his tenure has not been good at all – it includes almost a decade at the helm, a generationally awful team (years after he took over), numerous very high draft picks and, since the team has been competitive, a string of disappointments in the playoffs.

Randle McMurphy

Last nights game represents to me, just how hard it is to win in Bettman’s Age of Parity.

It’s almost hard to believe how well the Canucks match up against the Oilers; They seem never to be out of it.

lenko

They made it tough for Oilers to get out of their d zone and into the offensive zone so Oilers were dumping the puck in a lot. Seems like other teams have learned to check the Oilers hard. Definitely not too much trouble on their power plays.

Klam

To me this is the top guys leaning on their skill too much. They do not have that killer instinct and step on the throat to put away the easier teams. They have the skill, and yes sometimes the puck just bounces wrong, but they do not put the foot on the gas early in games to go up by three and then coast. They push at the end of the game either to win, or tie the game.

31saves

In fairness…. It was preseason.
Hard to have a killer instinct in preseason no matter how close to the real thing you are

SoCaloil

Zack Kassian had the killer instinct 😉

Reja

I agree I wonder if it’s the Coaching (Tippett) that they don’t go for the jugular.

Randle McMurphy

Watching TML All Or Nothing on Prime.

Excellent docu-series. No holds barred un-edited behind the scenes look at the dressing room and the front office.

In several scenes there is a huge poster on the wall behind Kyle Dubas’ desk. I wondered what it said.

Apologies for the wall of text.

Here it is:

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.”
― Theodore Roosevelt

Randle McMurphy

My take away from the series…for players, Coaches, GM’s and Team Presidents…

The pressure to perform is real and it is spectacular!

pts2pndr

In what you endeavour you should strive to be or do your best. To do less is to cheat yourself of all that you could be and or achieve!

Reja

That’s why you see players cracking the social media is a dangerous vehicle. If people knew every little story and how wild the Oilers were back in the day they would be shocked. I Just watched the documentary of the 86 Mets on some of their attics. Nowadays we get updates by H.H on what salad dressing Brock’s girlfriend is going choose with her lunch today.

Randle McMurphy

Teddy Roosevelt, master of the semicolon 🙂

BornInAGretzkyJersey

Watching TML All Or Nothing on Prime.

Excellent docu-series. No holds barred un-edited behind the scenes look at the dressing room and the front office.

This is, in fact, a heavily edited program. John Shannon was talking on Bob’s show (just prior to release) about how much had to be cut to satisfy the players’ egos and team confidentiality.

Nevertheless, these types of behind the scenes dramas are always an interesting insight to the daily goings on that we’re not typically privy to.

Side

I can never really understand why people get posters of quotes on their walls. Who is it for? If the quote had significant meaning to Dubas, wouldn’t he know it by heart? Is the quote for staff, players or agents who come by his office, to show that he’s ready to go to ‘war’ or whatever for his team? Does he relax by sitting back and reading that whole wall of text to lull himself into sleep?

BornInAGretzkyJersey

Only thing better than the motivational quote poster is the block of text tattoo.

Last edited 8 days ago by BornInAGretzkyJersey
Reja

It’s staging like Hrudey does when he’s commentating from his den. It makes me want to puke.

Melman

I’ve seen just the first couple episodes and they are definitely worth the watch. It does highlight a few TML issues. maybe it changes, but it seems like a real disconnect between Keefe and the players. I know players don’t have to like there coach (hi Scotty B), but my knee jerk is that they won’t win with him as the head coach. Also, what does bringing in Spezza, Thornton & Simmonds for leadership say to JT? It’s also a neat peak at Jumbo Joe behind the scenes – no wonder Marner and the youngins loved having him on the team. He is the dude

flea

If kassian is expected to miss time, Oilers should cycle back to Chaisson and sign him. He looked good last night.

Kert

Disagree. I don’t think there’s a spot for him on the PP anymore, and he doesn’t do enough 5v5. I’d rather gamble on a waiver pick up, move Perlini or Shore over or even bring Marody back up for a reaudition.
Chiasson is useful if he’s within 15 feet of the net and nobody is actively checking him. That just doesn’t happen for him 5v5, he doesn’t cycle well enough and I don’t remember the last time he was part of an odd-man rush.

DevilsLettuce

2015 cold night in Ottawa.

31saves

People are also forgetting that Hyman is a natural RW, so you could put him to the side, and figure out your LW From Nuge, Perlini, Foegole and Benson gets some NHL time.

Not ideal but if perlini continues his hot streak for 5-10 more games could it be Perlini-Drai- Hyman?

Kert

Absolutely. I’m not sure about Hyman with Drai. Drai is more like a Sedin (with a better one timer) with his cycle and possession game, and Hyman just wants to drive the puck to the net. Stranger combinations have found chemistry though. I could see Perlini working with Drai though, he can get a dangerous shot off from most places, and Drai is good at finding dangerous shooters. I don’t know if Perlini is good enough at puck retrieval against the caliber of players Drai sees every night. But that’s getting far from the point, yes, Hyman on the right side should absolutely be considered.

Side note, can you image a Foegele – Holloway – Hyman line once Holloway is ready? The puck and about 6 bodies are finishing the shift in the net.

31saves

Nuge-McD- Pulju
Perlini-Drai-Hyman
Foegole- Ryan – Turris/Yamamoto
Benson- McLeod- Shore

Not as pretty as the start of the year, but still two strong top 6 lines, a good-to-great 3rd line and the 4th line is full of youth and people working hard.

Man it feels good to have enough depth to withstand some injuries and still have a good lineup!

Randle McMurphy

Chaisson proves he can be frustrating to watch; When he’s on your team, or the other team 🙂

Bling

I really liked the way the D moved the puck. As JP said yesterday, that spinorama pass Ceci made to McDavid is not something Larsson could/would do. Keith also made some excellent plays with the puck.

The issue is going to be breaking cycles and coverage. Nurse – Barrie look good in this department. Nurse had an absolutely splendid step-up against Pettersson, stepping up at his own blue line with that long reach of his and denying the entry. I continue to notice his enhanced awareness of where the opposition is — definite marked improvement from 2-3 years ago. Last night, he was tying up those back door opportunities and preventing guys from knocking in rebounds.

I find now that even when Nurse gets beat — Pettersson had a nice fake to the outside before going back inside near the blue line — he is still able to recover and critically does not allow the opposing player to move towards the net. He fails in a safe way. Pettersson made the move and made a nice pass over, but it wasn’t the case that he was able to walk in and create an odd man situation.

Keith – Ceci are the ones to watch defensively. Keith has missed some time and is getting up to speed, but I’m a little surprised with Ceci. That said, new team, new system, etc.

JimmyV1965

Nurse almost never gets beat wide. And he’s terrific defending zone entries. You have to make an incredibly smart play or safe play or he’s gaining possession

OriginalPouzar

I think there are some “advanced numbers” that show a high rate of scoring chances when Nurse is defending the rush but I agree with the above, to my eye, Nurse is elite defending the rush – he almost never gets beat wide or clean and I’m not sure I understand where these numbers come from.

Scungilli Slushy

I missed the Dys two goals watching Canada get a point at Azteca.

Man they played well. Could have won that game if they had a little more organization attacking.

ArmchairGM

The fact that Canada were missing some starters makes the tie more impressive. Any idea what sort of team Mehico fielded? Were they missing a bunch of regulars too?

Scungilli Slushy

I’m not sure.

All the yellow cards were a bummer. The reffing was NHL calibre.

Reja

They are a well coached team with talent they’re going to keep improving the closer the dream of making the World Cup becomes reality.

Bohologo

El Tri* fielded a decent side, returning Jimenez, Lozano, and Herrera, meaning they were arguably in better shape than the Canadians on paper. Getting a point at Azteca (first time in 40+ years, I think) is notable. Not only are the visitors playing at altitude, but they are usually having to play in front of 87,000 fans.

About those fans: El Tri keeps getting sanctioned because their supporters shout homophobic slurs at opponents. It’s a mark of shame on the entire country, if we are going to be honest here and the punishment should escalate until it stops. Forfeit games, booted out of WC qualifying, whatever it takes.

*El Tri is short form for The Tricolor, a reference to the Mexican flag, but the joke in Spanish is it stands for la tristeza, meaning the sadness, because El Tri are always disappointing their supporters. Oilers fans can relate, possibly.

Last edited 8 days ago by Bohologo
Scungilli Slushy

The Canadians were sure looking like the climate and altitude were getting to them as the game went on. Next game against them is in November in Edmonton I believe, tables will turn!

My wife was mentioning that there weren’t supposed to be fans at that game but they dropped a game off the two game no fans sanction that was given because of the fans antics.

LadiesloveSmid

Going to take some games to zero in on.. just what Ceci is good at. There’s at least flashes of strong puck distribution from Keith, it was known that defending the rush is his issue. Ceci is puck off the glass & missing 6 foot passes every play.

Scungilli Slushy

Agreed. It is preseason but the puck movement looks a lot better so far, and the forward additions are a lot better at maintaining offensive zone time.

Kert

What stood out to me was some pretty mediocre puck retrieval. Pucks in the corner from a dump in, or rebounds, or loose pucks, or whatever, he’d struggle to settle the puck down while assessing the play, by the time he was ready to move the puck someone was on him forcing a less than ideal pass or an up-the-boards-to-nobody turnover.

Bizarro Ethan Bear.

Bank Shot

Keith looks like he is going to be a fine addition. The defensive woes have been built up a bit too much IMO.

Ceci doesn’t excel at any one area, but he’s got size and mobility. I think he’ll be fine in his role which will be a win at this price point. He’d have gotten 5+ if he could carry the second pair.

Brantford Boy

Obviously really hoping for Kassian to recover and be healthy for the season, and early words are good. I wonder if Perlini can play his position if there’s a chance he misses some time. Thus leaving Benson his 4LW spot for another week+. This would perhaps solidify NHL rosters making claims to form their teams for him to slip past waivers in a couple weeks. And yeah losing Gadjovich is a big deal for the Canucks.

Scungilli Slushy

I don’t see how Kassian doesn’t miss weeks. For his sake.

If you bang your noggin that hard you have a concussion, whether you are lucky enough to feel ok or not.

Kert

Yeah. When it comes to that type of injury, I hope they err on the side of caution.

OriginalPouzar

Many thought Khaira’s career was over – not once, but twice, last season.

He was able to come back MUCH quicker than anyone thought after watching the incident (and, yes, I trust the doctors that cleared him) and is contiuing on with his career and physical play.

Kass may be gone for months or he may play next Wed –

We can speculate based on the initial look but, at the end of the day, these things sometimes/often do look worse than they are.

Litke 94

I really liked Ryan and Foegele. Those two seem to always be on the right side of the puck and are going to make a marked difference on the third line.

Props to you LT, you identified Ryan as a player the Oilers should pursue very early on, and even though it’s early, he looks exactly as advertised. I think you nailed it.

Hyman is like a clock. Doesn’t take a shift off, always around the puck, always in on the forecheck, never slouching on a backcheck. Hard not to enjoy players like this.

Lastly, Keith & Ceci. As you stated LT, the first period was major yikes. After that, they settled down, especially Keith. He ends up 1-0 on the GF tally, and contributes to a 5v5 goal w/ no 97 or 29? Hard to bitch about that. Good game.

Last edited 8 days ago by Litke 94
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