GDB 45: Vincent Lecavalier

Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009 01:04PM

As we wait for the game against the Coyotes to begin, let’s consider two players over the past two seasons. Both are gritty, have good size, and are well-known and often mentioned as Top-10 players. Here are the numbers:

Player A

2008-09: 45GP – 28G – 21A – 59 PTS, +10

2007-08: 82GP – 40G – 66A – 106 PTS, -8

2006-07: 82GP – 56G – 54A – 100 PTS, +23

Player B

2008-09: 45GP – 15G – 22A – 37 PTS, +4

2007-08: 82GP – 41G – 44A – 85 PTS, -23

2006-07: 82GP – 49G – 57A – 106 PTS, -11

Player A is clearly superior to Player B. Outside of a slight difference in one season, he’s been a far better offensive performer, and his +/- totals are well ahead of Player B. Yet everybody, bizarrely enough, thinks that these two players are identical in ability, despite the fact that the statistics don’t support it at all.

The reason that everybody regards these two players as identical talents is because they are one player. Player A is Vincent Lecavalier, specifically his point totals against his own division, pro-rated over full seasons. Player B is Vincent Lecavalier against the rest of the NHL, pro-rated over an entire season.

I haven’t gotten into the effect of the various divisions on player performance, but it is something that we as Oilers fans should be wise to. We’ve seen the effect on Erik Cole, and it isn’t an illusion. The Southeast is the worst division in the NHL, by far, and it isn’t surprising that some of the league’s top goal- and point- scorers can be found there. It’s something that GM’s should keep in mind before making trades, at any rate.

It's something Oilers fans should keep in the back of their mind as they watch their team play the Coyotes and fantasize about what a new addition to the lineup could do to help the cause.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is Managing Editor of the Nation Network. He also currently writes for the Edmonton Journal's Cult of Hockey, Grantland, and Hockey Prospectus. His work has appeared at theScore, ESPN and Puck Daddy. He was previously founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue. Contact him at jonathan (dot) willis (at) live (dot) ca.
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#51 deep oil
January 18 2009, 04:46PM
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will andy make it on time for his retirement night - i am hoping that he has an oiler liason - babysitter - driver - so past history doesn't repeat itself - how did he make it out at the sponsored river cree poker tournament - with the oil in third jerseys this is always a 40 - 60 win percentage - but with the dogs this looks more 50 - 50 - their charter plane was delayed until 99 pulled out his credit card to cover fuel and landing costs.... could you imagine the dogs playing at glendale tonight after the Cards - ghosttown

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#52 Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009, 04:48PM
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Lines for tonight:

Penner - Horcoff - Hemsky Reddox - Gagner - Cole Moreau - Cogliano - Pouliot MacIntyre - Brodziak - Brule

Since Reddox isn't playing in a checking role, can somebody tell me what he's done to earn a scoring spot over Potulny or Brule? Let's try this:

Penner - Horcoff - Hemsky Potulny - Gagner - Cole Pouliot - Cogliano - Brule Moreau - Brodziak - Reddox

Better.

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#53 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 04:52PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: I like your idea way better, but heaven forbid we we move our veteran and captian down to the 4th line. When would he have the icetime to take an undisiplined penalty.

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#54 Gord
January 18 2009, 04:58PM
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@ Hockey Gods: What I don't get is that Moreau isn't reliable enough to be a shut down guy, he obviously isn't a scorer, yet sees a ton of minutes every game. I have no idea what Moreau's role is on this team. Can anyone help me out???

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#55 Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009, 05:00PM
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The biggest thing here is that the second line is the absolute worst place to use Reddox. That's the line that's supposed to score points against lesser foes (at home anyway).

There's no reason to put Reddox on that line.

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#56 Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009, 05:01PM
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Gord wrote:

@ Hockey Gods: What I don’t get is that Moreau isn’t reliable enough to be a shut down guy, he obviously isn’t a scorer, yet sees a ton of minutes every game. I have no idea what Moreau’s role is on this team. Can anyone help me out???

Faceoffs. This is the guy who throws Cogliano and Pouliot out of the dot, despite his 3-17 faceoff record.

It must be faceoffs.

Or maybe he's the reason our 31st-ranked penalty kill is so awesome.

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#57 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 05:07PM
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This whole Reddox expiriment is getting old. Why don't Tambo or someone have a good sot down with MacT and have him explain why Redoox on the second line is benefcial to the team.

He is Coaching not to lose...

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#58 Gord
January 18 2009, 05:16PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: Am I mistaken or does Moreau have the worst penalty killing stats on the team?

It doesn't matter though - under MacT's 'system' as long as you are trying hard you can every shift, you can make all the mistakes you want and you will still get 15+ minutes a night.

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#59 deep oil
January 18 2009, 05:16PM
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Hockey Gods - 0 - 0 - 82 and we would be .500 but Mact ends up there anyway - jonathon what is coach mact's lifetime regular season record

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#60 Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009, 05:17PM
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@ Hockey Gods:

Thing is, I'm one of those guys who, while not supportive, could understand why Reddox was playing with Horcoff.

Why he's playing on the soft-minutes scoring line is beyond me. Why Potulny's out of the lineup is beyond me.

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#61 Jonathan Willis
January 18 2009, 05:18PM
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deep oil wrote:

Hockey Gods - 0 - 0 - 82 and we would be .500 but Mact ends up there anyway - jonathon what is coach mact’s lifetime regular season record

You mean, what is GM Kevin Lowe's lifetime GM-ing record, don't you?

I don't think MacT's been what's kept this team mired in mediocrity (although this season, he bloody well hasn't helped). Lowe, outside of 2005-06, has been a disaster since the lockout.

Have fun watching the game, guys - I've got a dinner to go to.

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#62 Ender the Dragon
January 18 2009, 05:22PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

As for your “ask 30 NHL GM’s comment” - I can’t do it, but if you asked Ken Holland, or for that matter any GM in charge of a contending team if he’d rather acquire Hemsky or Lecavalier via trade, I’d wager good money he’d say Hemsky.

Jason Gregor wrote:

We all agree Lecavalier is a better player and Hemsky has a better contract, but as head-to-head player Lecavalier is more dominant to this point in their careers.

The bottom line to this debate in both blogs, however, always came down to the question 'If Tambo had the opportunity to trade Lecavlier for Hemsky straight up, should he do it?'

JW makes the case that it would be a poor trade for the Oil. CurtisS thinks it's a no-brainer that the Oil do the trade in a second. I'm not sure what Gregor thinks; his answer is a bit ambiguous, but maybe he wasn't aware there was a question.

For the record, I'm with JW on this. Hemsky is the better player for the Oil. If Vinnie comes to Edmonton, then his offensive numbers drop, our goals against goes up, and his salary eats up any chance of bringing in any significant other support. And I don't think the Oil are the only team who don't make that trade, either.

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#63 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 05:23PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: Jon I read your stats and thought about Reddox on the first, couple with the fact Reddox didn't frist line mins you made a very valid point.

And again I agree Reddox over Poltuny in a true offensive role is extremely questionable.

I guess time will tell, maybe the wheel o lines will kick in and Brule will get 2nd line minutes tonight. Until that happens people will continue to question Mact's ability to coach an offensive team, me being one them. I would love to hear how the MacT supporters are justifing this decision?

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#64 David S
January 18 2009, 05:50PM
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Dam...errr darn PPV. Anybody have a link for the game?

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#65 R-DAWG
January 18 2009, 05:50PM
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Hey guys is there anyway to get the ceremony live online or for that matter the game??

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#66 Fiveandagame
January 18 2009, 06:01PM
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@ Ender the Dragon: Well stated ender. Totally agree.

If you're playing soft minutes against bad teams you should be lighting the lamp. How many points do you think a player like Kovalchuck is going to get when he faces Minnesota 8 times a year. Or playes against Luongo 8 times a year.

Goals against in the southeast so far this year

WSH - 134 FLA - 124 CAR - 141 TAM -140 ATL - 165

total - 704

Goals against in NW

CAL - 128 VAN - 129 MIN -101 EDM -132 COL - 132

total -622

It's more than a 11% difference.

logic would say your offensive stats would be inflated.

Meanwhile the goals for is far more comparable. SE- 641 NW -623. Or a differential slightly below 3%.

So again this says you're offensive stats would be inflated playing in the SW. (Glad Samsonov found a home for himself there).

This would also explain why Ollie Jokinen's numbers are substantially down this year. After scoring 89 -91 -and 71 points with florida in the previous years he is on pace for 58pts. with Phoenix WHY? he is in a stronger division.

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#67 deep oil
January 18 2009, 06:02PM
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there used to be tvu link for pirating the nhl network but is gone due to nhl infringement - i am sure if you have dishnetwork instead of bell or shaw the game is free on FSN WEST - but you have to think outside the CRTC rules on this one

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#68 deep oil
January 18 2009, 06:05PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

deep oil wrote: Hockey Gods - 0 - 0 - 82 and we would be .500 but Mact ends up there anyway - jonathon what is coach mact’s lifetime regular season record You mean, what is GM Kevin Lowe’s lifetime GM-ing record, don’t you? I don’t think MacT’s been what’s kept this team mired in mediocrity (although this season, he bloody well hasn’t helped). Lowe, outside of 2005-06, has been a disaster since the lockout. Have fun watching the game, guys - I’ve got a dinner to go to.

good point - lowe likes to overpay and over extend leaving little cap room for future opprtunity - what does mom have on the stove tonight

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#69 Dropping Deuces
January 18 2009, 06:13PM
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Cheer fans. WTF

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#70 David S
January 18 2009, 06:14PM
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I don't think anybody "likes" to overpay. In our case, the guys we want to attract weigh in factors like brutal travel schedules, quality of living, quality of team mates and chances to win a cup - all of which make us pay more versus teams that have those things we don't. The overpay is just the equalizer.

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#71 David S
January 18 2009, 06:18PM
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"dope oil" strikes out again.

Here's the game link:

http://atdhe.net/live-tv.php?i=11453633

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#72 Fiveandagame
January 18 2009, 06:25PM
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Any Vancouver guys going to the Black Frog to watch this one tonight?

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#73 Fiveandagame
January 18 2009, 06:27PM
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@ David S: yup. How much would you have to pay to haul your wife out here to spend 8 months of the year in sub zero temperatures?

Thats why we have to get and Cogs, Gagner married off to nice Edmonton Girls. Incentive to stay put.

Of course if we won a few championships in a row it wouldn't hurt attracting players...have you ever been to detroit? Ewwww.

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#74 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 06:30PM
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Pitsburg is no paradise either.

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#75 Librarian Mike
January 18 2009, 06:36PM
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The other thing is that in a lot of those cities, you can have a bad game, and afterwards go out for dinner or to a movie and nobody would know who you are. Now, that's not to say that players don't compete, but sometimes they just have a lousy knight (SEE: MOREAU, E. 01/15/09) and want to be anonymous. That just isn't an option in this town. On the other hand, if you have a great night here you are GOD.

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#76 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 06:45PM
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What up JLers.

I am reading this dude's take on the game. Apparently Phoenix is putting their payroll on VISA, the front office is laying off staff and the team is in big trouble.

Oh and apparently:

Solve Roloson: Roloson has been Kyptonite to the Coyotes no matter where he's played the last few years. He's somehow just had our number both in Edmonton and in Minnesota. Hopefully the young guys can show him some new tricks and we can get to him early.

http://www.fiveforhowling.com/2009/1/18/727502/phoenix-coyotes-edmonton-o

Poor Wayne.

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#77 R-DAWG
January 18 2009, 06:46PM
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Thank you for the link...Great ceremony and as usual a touch emotional seeing Andy skate down the ice 1 more time. Great job Oilers!!

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#78 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 06:46PM
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No one is going to rip Moreau in public about his perforance the night before. I know I wouldn't, when you see these guys in public you are still a little awstruck, I would always be complimentry. For one reason even Tom Gilbert could likely kick my a$$, but why would a fan want to make it uncomfortable for a player to play in his city. I think most people are polite no matter what.

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#79 Bruthah
January 18 2009, 06:51PM
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Thanks for the link, DavidS. Steak is coming off the BBQ right away and beer is in hand. 'tis going to be a good night.

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#80 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 06:52PM
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I can't believe with a day full of football, great weather, and an evening oil game I am just cracking my first Bud Light now.

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#81 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 06:54PM
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Wanye Gretz wrote:

I am reading this dude’s take on the game. Apparently Phoenix is putting their payroll on VISA, the front office is laying off staff and the team is in big trouble.

Hey Wanye I couldn't find the part about Phoenix's finacial problems, did I miss a link or were playing tricks with my heart?

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#82 R-DAWG
January 18 2009, 06:55PM
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I'm hoping for a big time game tonite...5-3 Oil Cogs,Hemmer,Cole,Souray,Brodziak

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#83 Smokin' Ray
January 18 2009, 06:56PM
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Looks like Hemmer is playing... Yay!

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#84 R-DAWG
January 18 2009, 06:57PM
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Hockey Gods wrote:

Bud Light

Christ, are u a cowboy??...drink a real beer

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#85 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 06:57PM
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Watching Gene Prinicpe sing Happy Birthday to Mark Messier is one of my top ten Oilers moments.

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#86 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 06:58PM
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Hockey Gods wrote:

Hey Wanye I couldn’t find the part about Phoenix’s finacial problems, did I miss a link or were playing tricks with my heart?

It wasn't linked to that article? I had been surfing all around. Let me see what I can find.

Please hold

*Plays elevator music*

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#87 Smokin' Ray
January 18 2009, 06:58PM
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Does that mean Reddox will replace Penner on the top line?

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#88 Smokin' Ray
January 18 2009, 07:00PM
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Do you think MacIntyre was able to meet and talk to McSorely? I bet he crapped himself a little.

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#89 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 07:03PM
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@ R-DAWG: Sorry buddy, I am trying to lose the love handles but refuse to give up beer. I like this stuff better than Coors Light.

Not to worry, I have bottle of Gin ready to go if the game gets stressfull.

That may have been a camera shot the oilers would like to take back, Andy signing sticks with a can of Coors light in front of him. As if the old Boys on Bus aren't hung over as fvck today. Good for them though.

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#90 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 07:03PM
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Here we go

http://www.cbc.ca/sports/hockey/story/2009/01/16/nhl-coyotes-gretzky.html

Phoenix Coyotes head coach Wayne Gretzky confirmed Thursday that the troubled franchise requires financial assistance, and is seeking an investor who could help keep the team in Arizona.

The Coyotes could lose as much as $45 million US this season, including interest payments, and majority owner Jerry Moyes is looking for a partner.

http://sports.aol.ca/article/coyotes-in-financial-trouble-gretzky/488121/

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#91 Dropping Deuces
January 18 2009, 07:03PM
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No Debrusk? Sweet!

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#92 Dropping Deuces
January 18 2009, 07:04PM
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This game is gonna be confusing with everyone wearing #9

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#93 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 07:05PM
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Smokin' Ray wrote:

Do you think MacIntyre was able to meet and talk to McSorely? I bet he crapped himself a little.

Little nugget of poo in his UnderArmour LOL.

Oh Man I bet that motivaes him to fight even more tonight, his hero in the building. Carcillo may be a dead man.

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#94 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 07:05PM
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3 Glen Andersons??

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#95 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 07:07PM
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They should retire Rob Brown's hair plug technician

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#96 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 07:08PM
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Do you think he dyes his goatee?

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#97 Hockey Gods
January 18 2009, 07:09PM
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I don't know Quinner, I think you were onto something... that part about cutting out Gene Principe.

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#98 Wanye Gretz
January 18 2009, 07:10PM
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Hockey Gods wrote:

Do you think he dyes his goatee?

I'd say yes. The on air stylist at the PPV telecast tonight should be reprimanded.

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#99 Travis Dakin
January 18 2009, 07:10PM
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@ Wanye Gretz:

So uh... speaking of financial situations....

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#100 deep oil
January 18 2009, 07:10PM
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Wanye Gretz wrote:

Hockey Gods wrote: Hey Wanye I couldn’t find the part about Phoenix’s finacial problems, did I miss a link or were playing tricks with my heart? It wasn’t linked to that article? I had been surfing all around. Let me see what I can find. Please hold *Plays elevator music*< here is just one link http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/story/RTGAM.20090109.wsptcoyotes8/BNStory/GlobeSports/%22 michael dell owns the note at 18% as no bank would touch this to which moyes is the caretaker on - 30 million per year loss with WG getting 4 million per year with no risk
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