Happy Holiday: a lump of coal, or something

Robin Brownlee
December 20 2009 10:41AM

Well, the Edmonton Oilers have certainly done their level best to boost the Christmas spirit of the faithful at Rexall Place over the past three games, now haven't they?

Ho-ho-ho. The Oilers return home after winning five straight games on the road, putting a big dent in the Dive For Five bandwagon, and lose 3-2 to the Los Angeles Kings Dec. 15.

Ho-ho-ho. The Oilers jump out to a 2-0 lead against the Nashville Predators in front of another packed house before folding in a 6-3 loss, leaving fans face down in a big puddle of rum-laced egg nog Dec. 17.

Ho-ho-ho. Saturday night, the Oilers parlay a lucky bounce to a 2-0 lead over Washington. That goes sideways after Capitals coach Bruce Boudreau spends the second intermission questioning how a wealthy player like Alex Ovechkin could have hobo hair and such bad teeth. Ovechkin sparks a four-goal outburst and is last seen being patted on the backside by Boudreau as Oiler fans stumble to the parking lot after a 4-2 loss.

All that remains for fans before the NHL's official Christmas break is for Santa to sh*t in their stockings with an overtime loss to the feeble St. Louis Blues Monday and a fifth straight defeat in Minnesota Wednesday.

It could be ugly, indeed, long before the credit card bills roll in and that puke-inducing concoction otherwise known as grandma's Christmas cake hits the trash.

Bing and the losers

With Bing Crosby crooning White Christmas in the background and my son Sam bounding about the house fuelled by another load of holiday-issue sweets, it was disconcerting seeing the Oilers so thoroughly outclassed by Ovechkin and the Capitals in the third period last night.

When a good team, let alone a great team like the Caps, plays anywhere near as well as it can, the team Kevin Lowe and Steve Tambellini have assembled for coach Pat Quinn doesn't have the dimension, drive, talent or gamesmanship to do anything but hang on and hope.

Jonathan Willis nailed it with his assessment in his post-game wrap-up, That's Not A Choice, It's A Lack Of Options:

"I just don't know that I can scrape for positives when Washington sends out Ovechkin and Co. and the best Edmonton can manage in response is (one-armed) Shawn Horcoff, Patrick O'Sullivan (in a slump to end all slumps) and (NHL rookie) Ryan Stone.  Looking for a bona fide checking line, that's the best Quinn can do, and I can't even call him on it because there aren't any other options.

"Seriously — look down the roster. There's nobody. Hemsky would help a fair bit, but despite the sheer volume of forwards on the team there isn't anybody proven who can handle a checking role. It's Horcoff, O'Sullivan, rookies, the Ghost of thecaptainethanmoreau, and the faint hope of a healthy Fernando Pisani."

Like watching Uncle Arthur crack open his belt after too much turkey and stuffing and then pass wind while mom divvies up the pumpkin pie, the Oilers shortcomings have become tradition — at the very least for the past four years running. This isn't a one-off.

What to do?

  • Where is the shutdown line the Oilers need when it's 2-0 and the likes of Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom and Alexander Semin rev it up? Can you name three forwards on the roster Quinn could put together who could lock it down?
  • Where is the centre who can kill penalties and win face-offs? He was at Rexall Place last night, but David Steckel, who went 13-9 on the dot, wears No. 39 for the Caps. He doesn't count. There is no reasonable facsimile here.
  • Where is the defenceman who can settle things down in the defensive end? Who, aside from Sheldon Souray, has shown any ability whatsoever to clear the front of the net without getting out-muscled or out-smarted? Laddy Smid doesn't count, yet, because face-washing after the whistle doesn't qualify.
  • How many hacks at the puck would Ovechkin have had at the 4-1 goal last night if he didn't bang it past Jeff Deslauriers on the third try?
  • Speaking of Deslauriers, he's gone from sitting for months between starts last season to making 111 straight appearances with Nikolai Khabibulin waiting for Santa to deliver a new spine. Anybody have a plan?

The sad reality is there won't be anything under the Oilers tree on Christmas morning to bolster the ridiculously flawed line-up Quinn has to work with, the team loyal fans keep paying good money to see.

And there's not even a gift receipt to ease the pain.

-- Listen to Robin Brownlee every Wednesday and Thursday from 4 to 6 p.m. on Just A Game with Jason Gregor on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
Avatar
#51 Shaun Doe
December 20 2009, 05:22PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I think the worst part about tanking the season is we then have to wait till next season to see some new results. I just wish I could watch a season and be happy with the team on the ice. I can't say this current oiler squad is ruining my life, moreso my canucks fan friends are.

It would be nice to see guys like Moreau, Staios and Pisani being moved at the deadline to make room for next season and pave the way for some aquisitions in the off-season.

Avatar
#52 gman
December 20 2009, 05:30PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

The tradition of Festivus begins let the Airing of Grievances commence. I got a lot of problems with you people! And now, you're gonna hear about it. You, Katz,,,your team STINKS!"

Avatar
#53 Shaun Doe
December 20 2009, 05:32PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
gman wrote:

The tradition of Festivus begins let the Airing of Grievances commence. I got a lot of problems with you people! And now, you're gonna hear about it. You, Katz,,,your team STINKS!"

Too bad we might not be treated to any "feats of Strength" for festivus this year

Avatar
#54 Elaine
December 20 2009, 06:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Brownlee, you hit it on the nail. The team lacks a lot of things but most of all, talent. They don't have it. Katz needs to eat some contracts just to have a chance at improving the roster. It's terrible. I'm glad I live 400 miles away. I can turn the channel.

Avatar
#55 Crash
December 20 2009, 06:12PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

It's obvious to everyone this team is not making the playoffs and has been for awhile now...when Hemsky went down that clinched it...the sad thing is somehow this team will find a way to win enough games to have the 10 to 15th pick in the draft...

It's groundhog day

Avatar
#57 Eddie Shore
December 20 2009, 06:43PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Hemmertime wrote:

Moreau and Pisser have proven they can shut down people, at least more than anyone else has. Generally they require a decent C though. Horcoff at 5.5 should not be a shutdown player, but we need him to be. Better than POS and a rookie.

Really? Who did they shut down and when did this happen?

Avatar
#58 Crash
December 20 2009, 07:13PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Robin Brownlee wrote:

Thanks, but lack of talent is only one of the shortcomings of this team. The mix is wrong. There are overlaps in some skills and complete voids of others. Worst, there is no plan. Compete or rebuild? This team has never committed to the latter. It cheats. "We can still compete and rebuild at the same time . . ."

No, you can't.

Crash: I have to disagree. I think if Tambellini can find a way to trade Souray and rid the Oilers of Moreau and Staios at the deadline -- three moves -- the Oilers will free up cap space and settle quite nicely into the bottom five without officially declaring an all-out fire sale and the DFF. The moves can't stop there, but it would be a start.

I would "very much" like for you to be right RB and the key word in your statement was "if" Tambellini can find a way...I would like to see bottom 2 to be honest...and I am a season ticket holder who drives 350km every game... this team needs to rid itself of more than Moreau, Staios and Souray.

For what it's worth Spectors site is reporting today that Bruce Garrioch is stating league sources are saying that Tambellini is shopping Souray, Horcoff and Visnovsky...I don't know who his league sources are...it could get interesting before too long...I hope

Avatar
#59 JackBauer
December 20 2009, 07:30PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Hey Robin, can I ask you? What is the feeling like in the locker room right now?

Avatar
#60 David S
December 20 2009, 07:37PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

""We can still compete and rebuild at the same time . . ."

No, you can't."

If I were going to start an Oilers blog, this would be the header on my home page.

Avatar
#61 David S
December 20 2009, 07:38PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

^Man I fail at html.

Avatar
#62 Robin Brownlee
December 20 2009, 07:45PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
JackBauer wrote:

Hey Robin, can I ask you? What is the feeling like in the locker room right now?

Feels like failure.

Players make themselves scarce around the dressing room. Unless they are asked for by reporters through the PR staff and hauled back into the room, they are off the ice and in the back, where we can't go, pretty fast. They are running out of answers faster than we are running out of questions.

Avatar
#63 devoknows
December 20 2009, 07:45PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@crash

Wow, one could only wish that Horcoff can actually be traded. Im guessing if this Spector is true, it would be a situation where Oilers would have to "eat" some of his salary. I do believe the Oilers need to start all over, clean house But I certainly would like to see the Oilers keep Hemsky, Penner, Gags(only 19) Cogs, Stone, Nilsson,Vish, Gilbert, and Smid for sure,and try to build some chemistry around these players, 2 scoring lines, 1 checking line and an adrenelin line. Lets get talantend young guys for trades and high draft picks from tanking the rest of the season and Bingo Bango Bongo, 3-4 years from now were in the playoffs annually!!!! Yippee, I figured it out

Avatar
#64 Archaeologuy
December 20 2009, 08:02PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Sorry guys. It's my fault. The second i was able to watch a few games again the Oil started losing. Everything was good when I was working 80 hours a week, but now this team looks like @ss again.

Sorry everyone.

Avatar
#65 JackBauer
December 20 2009, 08:10PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Robin Brownlee

That really sucks, but they have no one to blame but themselves really. Perhaps they should run back to a locker room of mirrors so they can look at themselves.

". Im guessing if this Spector is true, it would be a situation where Oilers would have to "eat" some of his salary"

You cant do that under this CBA. That is exactly what Brian Burke wants to incorporate but for right now your not allowed.

Avatar
#66 Hambone
December 20 2009, 09:30PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Hahaha..."Shopping Horcoff?" In what world will someone actually take Horcoff? If he was making $2 mill or less, maybe, but who is going to take this player who is making 5.5??? My Christmas wish is for everyone to STOP saying trade Horc...because you can't. He's with the Oil till his contract is up or he retires. Get over it...

On another note. 12 games ago, everyone was all over Nillson as the biggest waste of space since Jason Bonsignore. Now people have him slotted in as one of our top 4 forwards? Again, in what word..... bizarro world, that's where.

Besides Penner, Hemsky, Brule, and Gagner on FWD and Vis, Smid, and Grebs or Gilbert on D, there should not be anyone guaranteed and even thought about. I love Souray but there is no chance he is around next year either.

Avatar
#67 Shaun Doe
December 20 2009, 09:51PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

The cruddy thing is with all these bust seasons we are nearing the end of contracts like Hemsky's which have been a bright spot amidst some of the other inflated expenditures. We may even be able to add Penner to that list if this season ammounts to something more than just an abberation.

Avatar
#68 Rob
December 20 2009, 10:09PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Robin Brownlee wrote:

I haven't heard that, but then Tambellini is laying low. If true, I'm sure he'll get on that right away and a deal will be done in minutes or hours.

Bruce Garrioch has tossed it out that Tambellini is trying to drum up some action, but with bad contracts and under-performing players, that's a bit like a guy with bad teeth and a comb-over looking to wheel a hot dame at closing time after the lights come on.

Garrioch specifically mentioned Horcoff, Souray and Lubo Vis. regarding the Oil shopping big ticket players in his blurb on the Score.com. I wonder if Stumble-ini would consider moving a healthy Khabby on or before the trade deadline if it keeps looking like this team is going to be blown up?

Cheating while trying to re-build doesn't even sound as if it could work. I think the Oilers need to be up front and honest with the fans which for them would be a new paradigm. They keep pushing vain hope when no one is buying it. I don't see them doing a Pittsburg or Washington until all the money and approval for an arena is in place. I don't think they want to jeopardize that project until they at least reach the point where the new building is in a secure stage of development. How many pissed off fans are going to support them if the organization throws up their hands and decides to go with going to the bottom of the standings and obtaining high draft picks.

A friend of mine went to a game at Rexall a couple of weeks ago and 4 gold tickets cost him close to a thousand bucks. Plus he travelled 5 hours to get there. How long will people be willing to do that and watch the gong show Lowe has created. Never mind the increased tax bill for Edmontonians in specific and Albertans in general.

Avatar
#69 Garett
December 20 2009, 11:24PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Woo Hoo! Blues beat Canucks and Oil are back in the basement of the West! The drive for the bottom 5 is alive and well!

Avatar
#70 OilBaron
December 20 2009, 11:46PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
gman wrote:

The tradition of Festivus begins let the Airing of Grievances commence. I got a lot of problems with you people! And now, you're gonna hear about it. You, Katz,,,your team STINKS!"

Tambellini my son says you run a crappy company

Avatar
#71 SiD
December 21 2009, 12:07AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Is it too early to really be thinking about the Taylor Hall Sweepstakes

Avatar
#72 SiD
December 21 2009, 12:16AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I'd like to see the oielrs going into next offseason with a line up like this

Penner Gagner Hemsky Horcoff Eberle Stone Potulny Brule Jacques

Lubo Smid Chorney

I doubt eberle will make the line up for next season but with the way the oilers are playing I'm sure anything is possible. And just maybe we'll get lucky and draft Taylor Hall.

Avatar
#73 DonDon
December 21 2009, 12:47AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Tonight the Oil settled into 15th place in the Western Conference and 25th place in the overall NHL standings. 25th place puts them in the dive for six, not five. If Klowe's contracts looked bad, how bad is Tambellini's contract for Khabby?

Avatar
#74 wes turner
December 21 2009, 06:39AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

obviously the oilers cant purposely tank the season.why would antone enjoy sixty losing games and have calgary come in and "pants"the team.gamble on a draft pick is having to suck for several consecutive years because you also need more than just one line. i like the core of hemsky penner gagne third liners stone and jaques prove they can play.if we get a checking center with some size and another scoring forward and one more defensive defenman ithink this team could be good

Avatar
#75 Tayranchula
December 21 2009, 06:41AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Saying we do get the 1st overall pick. Would drafting someone like Taylor Hall help? Dont get me wrong he is the best player in the draft this year but he is just like every other Oiler, small and speedy with good hands and thats not what the Oilers need.

Who else is ranked in the top 10 so far this year by the scouts?

Avatar
#76 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
December 21 2009, 06:55AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Tayranchula wrote:

Saying we do get the 1st overall pick. Would drafting someone like Taylor Hall help? Dont get me wrong he is the best player in the draft this year but he is just like every other Oiler, small and speedy with good hands and thats not what the Oilers need.

Who else is ranked in the top 10 so far this year by the scouts?

depends who's list you are looking at

Hall, Taylor

Seguin, Tyler

Fowler, Cam

Kabanov, Kirill

Connolly, Brett

Granlund, Mikael

Tarasenko, Vladimir

Galiev, Stanislav

Gormley, Brandon

Forbort, Derek

if the oilers were in the position to take hall, and had similar thoughts to you, they could always move the pick for a decent return as well

Avatar
#77 Lofty
December 21 2009, 07:27AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

The Oil have been rebuilding for 15 years so I dont get why the season ticket holders are only now getting frustrated.

Avatar
#78 douggy
December 21 2009, 07:38AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I'm sick of going to RX1, paying for PPV, and going out to bars, spending billions on beers just to watch the oilers loose! I often wonder if making the fans pay top dollar is really what this hockey club is all about? Sure it's a business, but aren't we in the business of winning? I cant stand watching this streaky team loose. Anyone else see that ottawa is down 4000+ fans per game? well Mr.Katz, take notice. if the oilers keep this up i expect the same thing here. as of right now, im dreading having to pay for those season tickets when my number is called. But I suppose on the plus side, I may be able to sell them to any fan that wants to see thier team beat the oilers on home ice.

Horcoff, O'Sullivan, and Moreau, need to go or be buried in the minors. We need to trade guys like grebby, gilbert and cogs while we can.

and every oiler fan who blamed it all on mac T...ouch!

Avatar
#79 Stall35
December 21 2009, 08:36AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
BigE91 wrote:

~Anyone like to purchase my tickets for the remainder of the season?~

I will give you $10 and last Saturday's losing 6/49 ticket....

Avatar
#80 Stall35
December 21 2009, 08:43AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Robin Brownlee wrote:

Hemmertime: I wouldn't be passing judgment on Steckel based on last night -- he was ordinary at best -- and a couple other TV games. His numbers over the past few seasons say he's the kind of player the Oilers need.

And Moreau, Horcoff and Pisani as the shutdown line? They've proven they can do that over a period of time, when? Did I miss it?

The Oilers can't afford Carter.

Tayranchula: Please stop it with the Kovalchuk and Gagne noise. That's not the solution. Kovalchuk is quite happy earning his big cheques in a town that doesn't care. And Kostitsyn? Not enough organized crime in Edmonton to keep him happy.

Au contraire on the big enough organized crime....Katz got the market on drugs (although pharmaceutical) and he's got the greatest legal scam going called the Oilers....bahahahaha....Goilers!!!!

Avatar
#81 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 21 2009, 09:00AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Note for those pushing for the high end superstar/scorer:

The team currently sits 10th league wide in the GF collum. Though the 40 goal scorer would be great, the team needs proper balance and roll players to move back into the playoff picture.(ie competent 2 way players with NHL experience)

Both of those things are relatively cheap and easy to find.

Avatar
#82 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 21 2009, 09:09AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Re Horcoff:

After a brutal start (2 points in 12 games) Horc has quietly put up 7 goals and 13 points in his last 19 games.

Not all star numbers, but still project out to 30 goals/56 points over 82 games. Numbers which would have placed him 12th for goals and 32nd for points amoungst centers last year. For the most part, his improved production has also come without Hemsky

Avatar
#83 Clarkenstein
December 21 2009, 09:20AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

RB, although the age of salary cap is relatively young would this team be the first ever to be in 15th place and capped out this late in the season? To the person(s) that think this team is one line away from respectability I suggest you look up the definition of "insanity"!! Finally, Merry Christmas to you Mr. Lowe... you're incredibly lucky your "friend" owns the hockey club.

Avatar
#84 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 21 2009, 09:28AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clarkenstein wrote:

RB, although the age of salary cap is relatively young would this team be the first ever to be in 15th place and capped out this late in the season? To the person(s) that think this team is one line away from respectability I suggest you look up the definition of "insanity"!! Finally, Merry Christmas to you Mr. Lowe... you're incredibly lucky your "friend" owns the hockey club.

Three of the bottom four teams are all basically cap teams (Carolina/Philly/Tor).

The Ducks are projected to pay 55.75 million this year.

The Wild are projected to pay 55.5 million this year.

The Habs are projected to pay 56.7 million this year

The Rangers are projected to pay 55.5 million this year

Even the Blues are projected to pay 54 million this year.

Avatar
#85 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 21 2009, 09:28AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clarkenstein wrote:

RB, although the age of salary cap is relatively young would this team be the first ever to be in 15th place and capped out this late in the season? To the person(s) that think this team is one line away from respectability I suggest you look up the definition of "insanity"!! Finally, Merry Christmas to you Mr. Lowe... you're incredibly lucky your "friend" owns the hockey club.

I'm assuming your definition of insanity is "Doing something the same way while expecting different results". Since when have the Oilers had a properly balanced roster with the correct mixture of proven vetran role players in the prime of their careers?

Avatar
#86 Dan the Man
December 21 2009, 10:23AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

If 90 points gets you a playoff spot the Oil will need to go 28-19 (or a similar combination with OT losses) in their final 47 games. Does anyone see that happening?

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say not a chance.

I want to hurt those people that tell me I'm not an Oiler fan because I want them to lose, I say that you're less of a fan if you want them to finish 9th-11th

Avatar
#87 Giggsunited
December 21 2009, 11:07AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dan the Man wrote:

If 90 points gets you a playoff spot the Oil will need to go 28-19 (or a similar combination with OT losses) in their final 47 games. Does anyone see that happening?

I'm going to go out on a limb here and say not a chance.

I want to hurt those people that tell me I'm not an Oiler fan because I want them to lose, I say that you're less of a fan if you want them to finish 9th-11th

I'm sure its going to take 94-96 points in the west to have a spot. So make it 30-17 and no, not a chance.

Avatar
#88 Giggsunited
December 21 2009, 11:14AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

you know its pretty sad when i'm taking my 4 yr old daughter to her first NHL game tonight and she bets me her nintendo ds that the Oilers loose! lol probably gonna be one of my worst memory as an Oiler fan.

Avatar
#89 bingofuel
December 21 2009, 11:20AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Giggsunited wrote:

you know its pretty sad when i'm taking my 4 yr old daughter to her first NHL game tonight and she bets me her nintendo ds that the Oilers loose! lol probably gonna be one of my worst memory as an Oiler fan.

On the other hand, if the Oilers win you get a Nintendo DS all to yourself and you get to teach your daughter a tough but important lesson on gambling.

Avatar
#90 Dan the Man
December 21 2009, 11:22AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Giggsunited

It's also going to be tough to finish dead last mind you. 61 pts was last place last season so based on that the Oilers need to go about 14-33 to have a chance. It'll be tough to catch Carolina but with Ward back they should be a little better.

Avatar
#91 Giggsunited
December 21 2009, 11:26AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
bingofuel wrote:

On the other hand, if the Oilers win you get a Nintendo DS all to yourself and you get to teach your daughter a tough but important lesson on gambling.

and when they loose? how do I teach my daughter to not gamble on somthing thats pretty much guaranteed a win?

Avatar
#92 David S
December 21 2009, 11:27AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
bingofuel wrote:

On the other hand, if the Oilers win you get a Nintendo DS all to yourself and you get to teach your daughter a tough but important lesson on gambling.

Brilliant!

Avatar
#93 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 21 2009, 11:30AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dan the Man wrote:

It's also going to be tough to finish dead last mind you. 61 pts was last place last season so based on that the Oilers need to go about 14-33 to have a chance. It'll be tough to catch Carolina but with Ward back they should be a little better.

Bottom 2 works for me, we have a sold shot at 2nd last.

Either Taylor or Tyler would be fine.

Avatar
#94 bingofuel
December 21 2009, 11:32AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Giggsunited wrote:

and when they loose? how do I teach my daughter to not gamble on somthing thats pretty much guaranteed a win?

That's when you teach her a very important lesson about drowning your sorrows in RX1 crackbeers.

Avatar
#95 Giggsunited
December 21 2009, 11:38AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
bingofuel wrote:

That's when you teach her a very important lesson about drowning your sorrows in RX1 crackbeers.

I'll drown my sorrows playing edward "Big Bear" hands.

Avatar
#96 BK
December 21 2009, 11:53AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Robin Brownlee

Worst, there is no plan. Compete or rebuild? This team has never committed to the latter. It cheats. "We can still compete and rebuild at the same time . . ."

No, you can't.

I AGREE! And this is a point I have tried to make both on this site and on Greggor's show. It appears THERE IS NO LONG TERM PLAN!

I think the world of our new coaching staff, and I think it's the best move Tambo has made. I hope they stick around long enough to see something come from their efforts, but I also hope that they are a part of developing a long and short term plan, because without out one, this team may be the Cincinnati Bengals of the NHL! Make the playoffs every 3 to 5 years, just to exit in the first round!

Avatar
#97 Giggsunited
December 21 2009, 12:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
BK wrote:

Worst, there is no plan. Compete or rebuild? This team has never committed to the latter. It cheats. "We can still compete and rebuild at the same time . . ."

No, you can't.

I AGREE! And this is a point I have tried to make both on this site and on Greggor's show. It appears THERE IS NO LONG TERM PLAN!

I think the world of our new coaching staff, and I think it's the best move Tambo has made. I hope they stick around long enough to see something come from their efforts, but I also hope that they are a part of developing a long and short term plan, because without out one, this team may be the Cincinnati Bengals of the NHL! Make the playoffs every 3 to 5 years, just to exit in the first round!

in not so many words didnt Tambellini even say he didnt have a long term plan?

Avatar
#98 bingofuel
December 21 2009, 12:33PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Giggsunited

Great. All I can hear now is that ridiculous Provincial Liberal ad... "No plan!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WgHRHo1Jl0A

Avatar
#99 PaperDesigner
December 21 2009, 12:59PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I think this is a team that has the ability to go for the fast rebuild, ala the Philadelphia Flyers a few years ago, because I believe in the off-season, you can trade skill players to round out your depth. There are quality players on this team, they're just completely out of balance. People stress how small this team is, but I think the bigger problem is how few of these "offensive" players think like shooters; Brule has probably been the most effective of the shrimp kids, and he's the only one who shoots the puck on net like he expects to score. That's not a coincidence. Watching the willingness of Washington's entire team to just throw pucks at Deslauriers is a real wake-up call, to be honest.

But the next generation is coming fast; it's probably time to figure out if Omark can be a big league scorer; the math says he can be, so let's find out if reality agrees with math. Paajarvi-Svensson continues to learn how to score against men. Eberle looked close at training camp, and likely will be ready to play in at least a limited role by next year. One of these guys will likely be ready to play next year, and though it may be too much to expect all three to make it, they have the pedigree to say that two out of the three being long-term options in the top six is not unreasonable.

I think the odd-man out is Cogliano. Great wheels, but there is some speed in the attack. Likely has some value among teams that want more speed and think that the Oilers general reluctance to play him in the top six is what is holding him back, not his own inability. I'm not convinced the solution for O'Sullivan is to trade him again, but if you can flip him for someone who can shut teams down on your third line or for a reliable top four physical defenseman, then you do it. I don't think you trade Nilsson; he likely won't have much value until he's answered all the questions about his compete and consistency, and if he reaches that point, why trade him then? Horcoff you can't trade. Penner and Hemsky you shouldn't. Brule may be small, but he has jam, and you can't let that go.

I question Gagner; I don't know whether to expect him to be a 60-70 player or a 80-90. I don't question his hockey sense or skill, but just his ability to impose his will upon any given play. I don't think he's figured out how to be effective on the cycle; he has a tendency to get into puck battles he can't win, which makes you wonder if he's ever going to be greatly effective at even strength. Still, he's probably good enough to be a second line forward, at least, going forward. I just wish I knew if he had anything more than that.

Moreau has to be rid of. In a lot of ways, he represents the old standard; let's grind it out, and push our mediocre talent to a higher standard to squeak into eighth. This group isn't about this; it's about either brilliance on ineptitude.... there's really not a middle ground. I don't think Moreau can relate.

I think you go with:

Penner-Horcoff-Hemsky Nilsson-Gagner-Brule O'Sullivan-ShutdownCenter-Pisani Jacques-Stortini-Omark Stone

It doesn't look too radical, but it's a team with a little bit more definition on its forward core. You have a power versus power line, a soft minutes second line, a shutdown, two-way line, and a make-it-miserable-on-the-opposition/bring-along-the-kid line.

Avatar
#100 PaperDesigner
December 21 2009, 01:00PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I mentioned the "Philadelphia" model for a rebuild, and I realize that I offered a tweaked line-up, but I was just showing something that would be more functional with a minimum amount of fuss. This team could still use more impact players, but that's easier to do when you have some concept of the framework of your team.

Comments are closed for this article.