Oilers vs. Leafs Postgame: Slump Busted

Jonathan Willis
December 30 2009 11:10PM

Edmonton Oilers: 3

Toronto Maple Leafs: 1

After a slump so bad that even incurable optimist Robin Brownlee found relief in the dive for five, the Oilers have won a game. Over a bad team, yes, but at least it was an earned win.

Oilers Three Stars, According To Me

1. Patrick O'Sullivan. Perhaps the unlikeliest hero on the roster, O'Sullivan scored two goals: one a flukey bounce off a defenceman's skate, the other a beautiful play in tight on a partial breakaway. He'd been having a poor night up until he drew a slash from Jeff Finger, which gave the Oilers the first power play (and O'Sullivan his first goal); after that he got increasingly good.

2. Gilbert Brule. A fine game for Brule, who along with Shawn Horcoff was on the ice for every Oilers goal. Brule's goal started the scoring and snapped a drought of his own (he's been cold offensively for as long as the team's been losing), and even though it was deflected it was a good shot to take.

3. Shawn Horcoff. Played a very nice game along with Brule and both he and O'Sullivan have looked better since they were split up. Moved the puck well on the power play.

Random Thoughts

Watching Pat Quinn roll lines has a certain rhythm to it, like waves gently rolling in on shore.  I decided to keep track of how he sent out his forward lines, and record it for the benefit of all.  The latter two periods were interrupted by penalties, but the first period had a soothing flow: 3,2,1,4,3,2,1,4,3,2,1,4,3,2,1,4,3,2,1,4,3,2,1.

I also noted down whether each shift was won or lost territory-wise, and it gave a surprisingly accurate feel for the game's momentum.  I've mentioned previously that I think 'momentum' is an overused word, but there's a reason it's become such a cliche: because there is some value to it.  In this case, every time a line does well, the next line goes out in the offensive zone, giving them a better crack at doing well, or when a line does poorly the next line starts in their own end, making it less likely that they'll have a successful shift.  The third period is a fine example: the Oilers carried the play early, and Nilsson drew a penalty; the Oilers scored on the ensuing power play.  After that they seemed to sit back, drawing even or losing shift after shift until first Grabovski hit a post and then finally Kessel scored on a Leafs power play.

Production values on the pay-per-view could be a little higher.  On the Leafs' lineup card, Kassel was listed as a first line forward and Kaberie was on the top defence pairing.  Than Dan Tencer came on to say something about being patient because the big picture was about eventually being a Stanley Cup contender (aside: no playoffs in three years and looking at a fourth is plenty of patience, Dan) but two-thirds of his segment was drowned out because the audio feed from the arena was blaring over top of it.

I'd be curious to know if Tencer was a little miffed by Rob Brown; right after his discussion on patience, Brown pointed to Toronto's record with and without Kessel as evidence that a single dramatic move can vastly improve a hockey team.

Gene Principe's absolutely brilliant.  I should really hate him, given his job, but he's just way too fun to listen to.  He had some good news in his little interview segments tonight, too - Pisani's been feeling good for two to three weeks and just needs to get his strength back, and both he and Comrie are skating regularly.

One small negative note: I'm not at all sure what the fourth line (Moreau, Cogliano, Stortini) was doing on the ice with around two minutes left.  They got badly hemmed in their own zone and it was only good luck that kept Toronto from drawing within one goal with a minute and a half left.  Compounding matters was Moreau cross-checking a Leafs' forward after the whistle; I probably would have blacked out with rage had the referee called it (and it was blatant enough that he easily could have).

One other note, which I suppose is both positive and negative - Toronto managed 66 shots on net at even-strength, although only 23 of those got through to Jeff Deslauriers.  Here are the shots on net totals for the Oilers' defencemen tonight:

  • Smid: 14
  • Gilbert: 15
  • Souray: 16
  • Visnovsky: 17
  • Staios: 33
  • Grebeshkov: 37

The first four names on that list were all on for between two and six more shots by the Oilers than the Leafs.  Grebeshkov and Staios were a combined minus-60 in terms of shots on net for and against.  The first two pairings were quite good, but they weren't quite as good as Grebeshkov/Staios were bad.  I was a little hard on Strudwick the other night, but Grebeshkov hasn't had a very good season and he ought to be just fine as a third-pairing guy.  Perhaps he's still suffering from injury.

I noticed that J-F Jacques is wearing a set of those new Farrell shoulder pads.  Apparently Dustin Penner wears them too.  I'm sold on the idea that those compression blocks are highly effective, but I have friends who figure they'll just be blocky and won't be any easier to move in than a standard set of shoulder pads.  If anyone here has used them I'd love to hear a review; they're fairly pricey and I don't really need new shoulder pads so I've been hesitant to spend the money.

It was nice to watch a win, although now that I've seen one I feel just the tiniest bit of regret that the Oilers are now within one of the Maple Leafs for 28th in the NHL.  I hate feeling conflicted about whether the team should win or lose; I suppose the best course of action is to just be happy for whatever comes, for whichever reason.

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#51 Chris.
December 31 2009, 11:39AM
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MR P wrote:

Hi guys, long time listener first time caller;

I personally do not want to see Eberle and MPS not play in the NHL next year. With all this talk blown player development over the past 5 or so years I have a sinking feeling that if we do rush them to the big show that their under-developed bodies wont be able to take the punishment.

Brule alluded to this in his interview on the PPV last nite, saying that maybe he wasnt ready for the big league at age 18 and that his early career injuries may have been related to his lack of physical development. He also said that those early injuries got into his head and seriously rattled his confidence, basically until this season.

I dunno but it seems like he was almost calling out columbus' player development, which seems eerily similar to our own.

And even in the best case scenario, if a player escapes serious injury and is able to develop in the NHL... what is the advantage to the organization? Take Sam Gagner as an example. He is twenty years old and will shortly be negotiating an RFA contract. The Oilers effectively surrendered to Sam all the rights and privledges under the CBA that much older NHL regulars enjoy years and years before Sam was developed, or mature enough to contribute to the success of the club. Does anyone believe that Sam's previous 13 and 16 goal season performances could not have been replaced by a steady, consistant journeyman NHL player inked to a value contract? It's not like Gagner's presence here bought Edmonton a playoff appearance... Year after year, the Oilers ice a lineup with way too many really young players; and then eventually lose those same players to other organizations just as they enter their prime. It's a good deal for guys like Sam, and a crappy deal for Oiler fans.

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#52 Chris.
December 31 2009, 11:44AM
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@crash

Colorado, Colorado, Colorado. Dare to dream. The Oilers have consistantly gone into NHL seasons with 3-5 raw prospects nearly every season since 2000. (Except 2006 where a more vetran team entered the fray with two unproven goaltenders)

How's that been working out?

*I consider players to be raw prospects untill they have around 160 pro games*

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#53 crash
December 31 2009, 11:45AM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Like I said, if we want to rebuild for another 2-3 years. Lets inject another 3/4/5 guys with less then 100 games NHL experience.

If we want to compete next year lets add 4-5 competent, proven all-around NHL'ers and let the prospects develop in developmental leagues.

Could this possibly be competitive?

Hall or Seguin/Gagner/Hemsky....Penner/Sharp/Eberle....

Svensson/Horcoff/Tootoo....JFJ/Brule/Colby Armstrong

Extras: Stortini

Smid/Vish....Cam Barker/Gilbert....Chorney/Peckham....Strudwick or Staios or insert name

Additions as per your request, Sharp, Tootoo, Armstrong (instead of Nystrom or Bourque) and Cam Barker. Doesn't have to be those guys exactly but Tootoo and Armstrong are UFA's and Chicago is looking to dump salary with not much salary in return. I could have included names like Horton or Jeff Carter...who knows...trades happen

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#54 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 31 2009, 11:48AM
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crash wrote:

I understand that players like Doughty don't come along like they grow on trees but like I mentioned 7 of the top 10 scoring rookies this season played major junior last year...they have all graduated directly to the NHL without making a stop in the AHL...and this is becoming more of a trend in the entire league.

It's not just Doughty...we have John Tavares, Mat Duchene, Tyler Myers, Jamie Benn, Michael Del Zotto, Ryan O'Reilly, Evander Kane all playing this year amongst others.

Also I believe with the advent of the KHL European rookies are more likely to stay over seas than to agree to come over here and play in the AHL so you won't see as many Euros graduating to the NHL from farm teams as you used to

Yep, I understand what you're getting at and I largely agree. Doughty - although more than capable of playing in the NHL - doesn't necessarily support your point. It's akin to saying that Hall should be able to score 50 goals because Crosby and Ovechkin do it.

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#55 crash
December 31 2009, 11:49AM
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Chris. wrote:

Colorado, Colorado, Colorado. Dare to dream. The Oilers have consistantly gone into NHL seasons with 3-5 raw prospects nearly every season since 2000. (Except 2006 where a more vetran team entered the fray with two unproven goaltenders)

How's that been working out?

*I consider players to be raw prospects untill they have around 160 pro games*

I'm not going to do the research but I don't believe your statement is accurate...tell me who these 3-5 raw prospects have been in each of those years that were actually on the club as raw rookies right out of Junior

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#56 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 11:51AM
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crash wrote:

Could this possibly be competitive?

Hall or Seguin/Gagner/Hemsky....Penner/Sharp/Eberle....

Svensson/Horcoff/Tootoo....JFJ/Brule/Colby Armstrong

Extras: Stortini

Smid/Vish....Cam Barker/Gilbert....Chorney/Peckham....Strudwick or Staios or insert name

Additions as per your request, Sharp, Tootoo, Armstrong (instead of Nystrom or Bourque) and Cam Barker. Doesn't have to be those guys exactly but Tootoo and Armstrong are UFA's and Chicago is looking to dump salary with not much salary in return. I could have included names like Horton or Jeff Carter...who knows...trades happen

I think adding 3 rookies to the forward corps is a bad idea (especially when they would be 18, 19 and 20.)

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#57 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 11:52AM
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@jeanshorts

I've sat all over the place as well (including row 53 - you know how many rows are in the building? - that's right, 53) and I really don't think there is a bad seat. Well, except the seats themselves. Terrible. No leg room, no arm room, and God forbid you're surrounded by big bodied fella's/gal's, even if you are there with them. And the concourse does suck too. A new barn is a must, but don't F it up. I've heard good things about Minnesota & Columbus, so there's no excuses to not build the best arena out there.

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#58 crash
December 31 2009, 11:58AM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

Yep, I understand what you're getting at and I largely agree. Doughty - although more than capable of playing in the NHL - doesn't necessarily support your point. It's akin to saying that Hall should be able to score 50 goals because Crosby and Ovechkin do it.

Well who knows, Hall might be that 50 goal scorer, time will tell and maybe Doughty alone doesn't necessarily support my point...I was just using him as one name...it's him combined with all the other youngsters playing right now in the league. Many seem to want to send Eberle and Svensson to the minors....just because....and that doesn't necessarily make sense to me.

Some people are saying it's a given the team can't compete having 2 or 3 players on the team right out of junior....I'm saying why not...it happens, why not here...I agree you do need the right vets as well in order to compete

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#59 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 11:59AM
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misfit wrote:

I watched the game online with the Sportsnet East crew, and the production value wasn't much better. I think the guy calling the game called just about every defenseman Gilbert at least once, and Grebeshkov and Visnovsky got it a few times (probably because their numbers both have 7s in them).

Did they call Grebeshkov "Krushelnyski"?

At least they called them a player currently on the team, currently in the league and hey, as you say, at least there was a 7 in some of their numbers.

They didn't start choking on popcorn mid-play either, did they?

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#60 swany
December 31 2009, 11:59AM
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Full rebuild while keeping cap low, my roster for next year if we can get Hall. 1st line Penner, Gagner, Hemmer 2nd line MPS, Eberle, Hall. 3rd line Brule, Horc, JFJ. 4th line Stone, Poltuny, Storts. D 1st Vish, Smid 2nd Gilbert, Chorney 3rd Pecham, Struds. we get killed for one more year to draft in the top 5 in 2011, plus this team would cap out at around 44 mil so after the draft in 2011 we can add a couple free agents or make trades to upgrade the D. If you are going full rebuild the kids have to play Eberle is a lock for the team if Hall is #1 overall he plays right now MPS is already playing pro and is tied with Eberle for the most points at the WJHC.

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#61 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:02PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

Where the crap is Towelboy with the draft update? There'd better be a feature on how I've overtaken RossCreek and brought shame to his ancestors.

*shakes fist*

**wipes away bucket of tears*

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#62 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 31 2009, 12:03PM
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crash wrote:

Well who knows, Hall might be that 50 goal scorer, time will tell and maybe Doughty alone doesn't necessarily support my point...I was just using him as one name...it's him combined with all the other youngsters playing right now in the league. Many seem to want to send Eberle and Svensson to the minors....just because....and that doesn't necessarily make sense to me.

Some people are saying it's a given the team can't compete having 2 or 3 players on the team right out of junior....I'm saying why not...it happens, why not here...I agree you do need the right vets as well in order to compete

See, I definitely wouldn't be opposed to Eberle, Svensson, and Hall being on the team. They would definitely have to give me a reason, though. Eberle's performances in Junior and at this year's camp lead me to believe that - despite the fact that some people think it's a bad idea to have too much young blood - he'll make it. I think he's capable. MPS is a different story, though, and his camp might show us something we don't want to see. This would suggest he's not ready and a year in the A would definitely benefit him. It might also give me a chance to watch him for a game or two against the Moose.

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#63 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 31 2009, 12:04PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

Did they call Grebeshkov "Krushelnyski"?

At least they called them a player currently on the team, currently in the league and hey, as you say, at least there was a 7 in some of their numbers.

They didn't start choking on popcorn mid-play either, did they?

Haha which game was it... I was watching one awhile back where they kept calling Antti Niemi Antti Miettinen (sp?). I had a good chuckle every time because they didn't correct themselves.

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#64 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:04PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

I'm not sure why there's so much buzz surrounding Taylor Chorney.

Since turning pro:

15 NHL games, -10 82 AHL games, -46 97 professional games, -56

I get that stats don't tell the whole story, but dear god those numbers are ugly.

I've got no other explanation than to say, fans need a new whipping boy if they chase everyone else out. Chorney is cleary the best prospective whipping boy, no?

*spoken in a half serious manner*

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#65 crash
December 31 2009, 12:07PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

I think adding 3 rookies to the forward corps is a bad idea (especially when they would be 18, 19 and 20.)

I know it's beating a dead horse but it's working in Colorado...Duchene (18), O'Reilly (18) and Galiardi (21)

Why is adding 3 rookies a bad idea? Let's blow this up and start over with youth. IMO

I don't think it would really be that bad. Of course it hinges on if Eberle, Svensson and Hall/Seguin are ready....IMO Eberle and Svensson are for sure...Hall too. Just not sure on Seguin just yet.

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#66 Chris.
December 31 2009, 12:10PM
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@crash

Raw recuruits right of junior? No I mean players who have limited pro experience. For example, guys who have just come out of college. Or CHLers who play less than two seasons in the AHL... Basically, guys who still need a lot of polishing. Sure an NHL roster can integrate a few prospects to learn on the fly... but it's hard for a coach to find soft minutes for more than a couple of guys.

In 2000 The Oilers iced a linup of rookie guys under 21 that included: Brewer, Cleary, Comrie, and Horcoff.

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#67 swany
December 31 2009, 12:10PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

See, I definitely wouldn't be opposed to Eberle, Svensson, and Hall being on the team. They would definitely have to give me a reason, though. Eberle's performances in Junior and at this year's camp lead me to believe that - despite the fact that some people think it's a bad idea to have too much young blood - he'll make it. I think he's capable. MPS is a different story, though, and his camp might show us something we don't want to see. This would suggest he's not ready and a year in the A would definitely benefit him. It might also give me a chance to watch him for a game or two against the Moose.

MPS is already playing pro I doubt he comes over to play in the A we can see what he does on the smaller ice now. He skates like a madman and has a great shot, the only way a rebuild works is you target the guys that will make up this core and be ready to win in 3 years and start playing them NOW. The core of this team will be Penner, Hemmer, Eberle, MPS, Hall(if we get him) Brule, Gagner Smid, Gilbert(grebs will be delt one year contract) Vish need a leader on D and hate to say it Horc add to that what you can.

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#68 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:10PM
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@crash

Not to jump into the middle of a fight I have no care to really be in, but...

...you cherry pick Colorado, yet what could be said about Phoenix? They've already tried throwing every prospect they had into the lineup with little success. This year they send a bunch of them down to the farm and replace them with unheralded veterans and the team is a playoff team. There is no excuse as to why a local guy like Vernon Fiddler wasn't signed (unless of course they tried, but I never heard any mention of them looking).

Neither of you are wrong. It just depends on what exactly "the plan" is.

Having said all that, I'd expect at least one of Eberle/Svensson to be there, possibly both (if they move a guy like Cogliano).

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#69 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:12PM
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@MR P

Welcome to "the other side" :-)

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#70 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 31 2009, 12:13PM
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swany wrote:

MPS is already playing pro I doubt he comes over to play in the A we can see what he does on the smaller ice now. He skates like a madman and has a great shot, the only way a rebuild works is you target the guys that will make up this core and be ready to win in 3 years and start playing them NOW. The core of this team will be Penner, Hemmer, Eberle, MPS, Hall(if we get him) Brule, Gagner Smid, Gilbert(grebs will be delt one year contract) Vish need a leader on D and hate to say it Horc add to that what you can.

He's already playing pro, but it's more than just the size of the ice that he's going to have to adjust to. I agree that you have to give them a chance to play but I think you need to start a lot of these guys out playing sheltered minutes to give them a chance to really work on their game. You can't do that if 30 or 40% of the team falls into the developmental category.

Bear in mind that it's not just the rookies that need to develop right now. Gagner, Brule and Cogliano are still largely works in progress. So is Smid, even though he's made leaps and bounds in the past year and a half or so.

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#71 crash
December 31 2009, 12:15PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

See, I definitely wouldn't be opposed to Eberle, Svensson, and Hall being on the team. They would definitely have to give me a reason, though. Eberle's performances in Junior and at this year's camp lead me to believe that - despite the fact that some people think it's a bad idea to have too much young blood - he'll make it. I think he's capable. MPS is a different story, though, and his camp might show us something we don't want to see. This would suggest he's not ready and a year in the A would definitely benefit him. It might also give me a chance to watch him for a game or two against the Moose.

Agreed, MPS could have a terrible camp but his performance also at the World Juniors and in the Swedish Elite league (I think he was either leading his team in scoring or was 2nd when he left for the world jr's) might suggest he can play...plus he has size working for him (6'1", 201lbs)

I'm not saying these guys are locks but if they are ready then I'd like to see them all here next year. No sending them down just for the sake of sending them down.

I have a feeling MPS might not agree to play in the AHL if the KHL is an option or the Swedish Elite League....you might have to travel quite a ways to see him play, lol.

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#72 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:15PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

See, I definitely wouldn't be opposed to Eberle, Svensson, and Hall being on the team. They would definitely have to give me a reason, though. Eberle's performances in Junior and at this year's camp lead me to believe that - despite the fact that some people think it's a bad idea to have too much young blood - he'll make it. I think he's capable. MPS is a different story, though, and his camp might show us something we don't want to see. This would suggest he's not ready and a year in the A would definitely benefit him. It might also give me a chance to watch him for a game or two against the Moose.

But wouldn't it be so much better to have those guys in our back pocket? Wouldn't it be nice to know Eberle/MSP/Whomever we draft this year is growing physically and as a player in our system AND we have legit, proven NHL'ers currently on the ice?

Depth, depth, depth. That's what this team needs. Sure replace Moreau/O'sully/Nillson/Staios/Grebs. But lets replace them with "are" rather then "maybe"

If the prospects prove without a shadow of a doubt that they belong in the NHL, (we know they'll get some time on the big squad for injury call ups) we can then move the assets we've aquired for more assets.

Woudn't it be nice next year, when Penner/Hemsky are on their last year of contract to know we have replacements ready to go? To have the choice of who we want to keep and who we want to move, rather then be FORCED to play a guy that we all of a sudden figure out isn't ready for the big club?

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#73 swany
December 31 2009, 12:18PM
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@RossCreekNation

I agree some what but what happens to the Yotes when the Vets are old and done, then they have to call up all that youth and there's no chenistry. Playing all the young guys together gives them 3 years of building this team into something, they will know where the other guy is before he gets there. Adding MPS, Eberle, and Hall at this stage will only help them. They along with Penner, and Hemmer will take over the team and that's a good thing.

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#74 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:18PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

Haha which game was it... I was watching one awhile back where they kept calling Antti Niemi Antti Miettinen (sp?). I had a good chuckle every time because they didn't correct themselves.

I've heard Rod Phillips call Grebeshkov "Krushelnyski" multiple times in multiple games. It was like a total 'Nam flashback.

And last night he choked on popcorn as O'Sullivan scored his second. Bobby had to come in for the rescue and finish the post-goal call. LOL.

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#75 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:19PM
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crash wrote:

I know it's beating a dead horse but it's working in Colorado...Duchene (18), O'Reilly (18) and Galiardi (21)

Why is adding 3 rookies a bad idea? Let's blow this up and start over with youth. IMO

I don't think it would really be that bad. Of course it hinges on if Eberle, Svensson and Hall/Seguin are ready....IMO Eberle and Svensson are for sure...Hall too. Just not sure on Seguin just yet.

And Edmoton has struggled the last three years with a bunch of young guys.

We already blew it up and started over with youth. We just seen this game play out, and it sucked. I can't for the life of me understand why people want to do it again.

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#76 crash
December 31 2009, 12:21PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

Not to jump into the middle of a fight I have no care to really be in, but...

...you cherry pick Colorado, yet what could be said about Phoenix? They've already tried throwing every prospect they had into the lineup with little success. This year they send a bunch of them down to the farm and replace them with unheralded veterans and the team is a playoff team. There is no excuse as to why a local guy like Vernon Fiddler wasn't signed (unless of course they tried, but I never heard any mention of them looking).

Neither of you are wrong. It just depends on what exactly "the plan" is.

Having said all that, I'd expect at least one of Eberle/Svensson to be there, possibly both (if they move a guy like Cogliano).

There's no fight, it's just a discussion and yes of course I'm picking a team that has had success doing it just to show that it has been done. Yes in some cases it doesn't work but from what I've been hearing around here people are tired of the same ole...tweaking the lineup trying to make the playoffs only to fall just short or to squeak into 8th place...people have been calling for a blow up and going with youth...then when you talk about a good way to go about it people jump off the idea....

I don't get it...do we blow it up and go with youth and let them develop chemistry together or do we keep trying to squeak into the playoffs every year and grab that 14th pick in the entry draft?

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#77 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:21PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

He's already playing pro, but it's more than just the size of the ice that he's going to have to adjust to. I agree that you have to give them a chance to play but I think you need to start a lot of these guys out playing sheltered minutes to give them a chance to really work on their game. You can't do that if 30 or 40% of the team falls into the developmental category.

Bear in mind that it's not just the rookies that need to develop right now. Gagner, Brule and Cogliano are still largely works in progress. So is Smid, even though he's made leaps and bounds in the past year and a half or so.

Your last paragraph is bang on. It would be one thing if we already had a bunch of proven guys in their prime.

Brule/Gagner/Hall/Eberle/MSP (and probably at least one holdover from Nilsson/O'sully/Cogs) all on the team next year would be a disaster.

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#78 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:21PM
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swany wrote:

I agree some what but what happens to the Yotes when the Vets are old and done, then they have to call up all that youth and there's no chenistry. Playing all the young guys together gives them 3 years of building this team into something, they will know where the other guy is before he gets there. Adding MPS, Eberle, and Hall at this stage will only help them. They along with Penner, and Hemmer will take over the team and that's a good thing.

Aren't the young guys in Phoenix developing chemistry on the farm now?

**AHAHAHAHAHAHA. I just remembered a dream I had last night. The Oilers named a new General Manager... wait for it... Robin Brownlee. Might not be a bad idea**

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#79 swany
December 31 2009, 12:22PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

But wouldn't it be so much better to have those guys in our back pocket? Wouldn't it be nice to know Eberle/MSP/Whomever we draft this year is growing physically and as a player in our system AND we have legit, proven NHL'ers currently on the ice?

Depth, depth, depth. That's what this team needs. Sure replace Moreau/O'sully/Nillson/Staios/Grebs. But lets replace them with "are" rather then "maybe"

If the prospects prove without a shadow of a doubt that they belong in the NHL, (we know they'll get some time on the big squad for injury call ups) we can then move the assets we've aquired for more assets.

Woudn't it be nice next year, when Penner/Hemsky are on their last year of contract to know we have replacements ready to go? To have the choice of who we want to keep and who we want to move, rather then be FORCED to play a guy that we all of a sudden figure out isn't ready for the big club?

But this is NOT a rebuild, if your replacing vets with vets your moving sideways, what we are talking about is taking one step back for 2 steps forwards, and as Penner and Hemmer go I sign them before they come up asap. The Oilers have to identify what players are staying LONG term and get them done.

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#80 swany
December 31 2009, 12:24PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

Aren't the young guys in Phoenix developing chemistry on the farm now?

**AHAHAHAHAHAHA. I just remembered a dream I had last night. The Oilers named a new General Manager... wait for it... Robin Brownlee. Might not be a bad idea**

What young guys on the farm. Plus you only send guys down that aren;t ready to play here. Do you think Eberle's not ready, or if they pick Hall he would be the 1st overall pick to go down in 5 years, plus the scouts say he's already better than Stamkos, the only one is MPS can he play the NA style?

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#81 crash
December 31 2009, 12:25PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

And Edmoton has struggled the last three years with a bunch of young guys.

We already blew it up and started over with youth. We just seen this game play out, and it sucked. I can't for the life of me understand why people want to do it again.

But have we ever had these kind of young prospects at the same time and a top 2 pick in the draft? I don't think we have. Both Eberle and MPS are at the top of the World Jr pack. We've never had that and if we pick 1st or 2nd in the draft...well, we've never had that either.

Have we really ever blown it up and started over....I think there are many here who would say we haven't actually ever blown it up

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#82 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:26PM
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@swany

I agree some what but what happens to the Yotes when the Vets are old and done, then they have to call up all that youth and there's no chenistry.

Aren't the young guys in Phoenix developing chemistry on the farm now?

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#83 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:28PM
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swany wrote:

But this is NOT a rebuild, if your replacing vets with vets your moving sideways, what we are talking about is taking one step back for 2 steps forwards, and as Penner and Hemmer go I sign them before they come up asap. The Oilers have to identify what players are staying LONG term and get them done.

Rebuilding doesn't mean going with half a team of teenagers.

We've already got the young NHL'ers and the prospects (+ whomever we get this year)

Adding 4-5 guys in their mid to late 20's (while subtracting 3 guys in their 30's and a couple young small/soft players) does not stop a rebuild. It allows the team to compete as soon as next year while still having those top prospects in their back pocket, who can then be integratted gradually.

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#84 swany
December 31 2009, 12:30PM
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crash wrote:

But have we ever had these kind of young prospects at the same time and a top 2 pick in the draft? I don't think we have. Both Eberle and MPS are at the top of the World Jr pack. We've never had that and if we pick 1st or 2nd in the draft...well, we've never had that either.

Have we really ever blown it up and started over....I think there are many here who would say we haven't actually ever blown it up

Completely agree, we have never had this, and we have never ripped it down and started fresh, we have a chance to have 6 first round picks play next year. Hemmer, MPS, Eberle, Brule, Gagner, and this years pick keep the young size we have already Storts JFJ and Stone to balance this out.

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#85 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:34PM
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The Oilers are currently made up of really young guys, really old guys (not Chelios old mind you), but they don't have enough of the middle age core - the guys like Stoll, Greene, Torres would've been. That's what they need to look for.

IMO, the 3 rookies would have a shot at playing IF Cogliano, Nilsson and perhaps even O'Sullivan were moved for 26-29 year old two-way vets with grit. Easier said than done, I guess.

But I'm with OB as far as the rookies + the young players already here = disaster. But then again, maybe thats fine for another year.

And I guess I'm with crash in thinking its possible for the rookies to make the lineup.

To me, you're both half right.

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#86 swany
December 31 2009, 12:35PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Rebuilding doesn't mean going with half a team of teenagers.

We've already got the young NHL'ers and the prospects (+ whomever we get this year)

Adding 4-5 guys in their mid to late 20's (while subtracting 3 guys in their 30's and a couple young small/soft players) does not stop a rebuild. It allows the team to compete as soon as next year while still having those top prospects in their back pocket, who can then be integratted gradually.

And where are you going to get 4 or 5 guys in there mid 20's all the other teams are going to line up and trade these guys to us why? Do you see Moreau getting a Sharp, or Byfglien(sp)If your Idea would work why not do it now, tell me some of these guys you have in mind are because if I was GM no way I trade my guys in there 20's for guys in there 30's. Plus all these guys in there 20's will be under contract or RFA require offer sheets

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#87 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:36PM
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@swany

Having

Hemsky/MSP/Eberle/Brule/Gagner/Nystrom/Simmonds/Penner >>> Hemsky/MSP/Eberle/Brule/Gagner/Penner/Reddox/O'marra

Is really what it boils down to, not sure why people can't see this.

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#88 swany
December 31 2009, 12:40PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

The Oilers are currently made up of really young guys, really old guys (not Chelios old mind you), but they don't have enough of the middle age core - the guys like Stoll, Greene, Torres would've been. That's what they need to look for.

IMO, the 3 rookies would have a shot at playing IF Cogliano, Nilsson and perhaps even O'Sullivan were moved for 26-29 year old two-way vets with grit. Easier said than done, I guess.

But I'm with OB as far as the rookies + the young players already here = disaster. But then again, maybe thats fine for another year.

And I guess I'm with crash in thinking its possible for the rookies to make the lineup.

To me, you're both half right.

That was in my other post playing all the young guys we will get killed for one more year BUT we will have a cap of around 44 mil. we let them play and learn with each other suck for that year pick in the top 5 again in 2011 and then make your deals, we will have 7 1st round picks ready to play and a low cap then make your deals to help out all that scoring I'm talking about being bad this year and next while we let the kids grow, we add a Hall this year a top 5 next year and have a ton of cash to spend.

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#89 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:40PM
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swany wrote:

And where are you going to get 4 or 5 guys in there mid 20's all the other teams are going to line up and trade these guys to us why? Do you see Moreau getting a Sharp, or Byfglien(sp)If your Idea would work why not do it now, tell me some of these guys you have in mind are because if I was GM no way I trade my guys in there 20's for guys in there 30's. Plus all these guys in there 20's will be under contract or RFA require offer sheets

This past summer was (and this next summer will be) the greatest bargin hunting time we've seen. Re-read the first post in the thread.

Depth players will be plentiful and cheap this summer. Now is the time to add them on bargin contracts.

Sharp was just an example (a dream if you will) but Chicago HAS to move salary this summer. Something like Cogs+pick+prospect may be of interest.

Our old guys can be traded for very low picks or prospects that will never be. We then replace them with younger role players (Nystrom) who can be had on the cheap.

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#90 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:41PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

The Oilers are currently made up of really young guys, really old guys (not Chelios old mind you), but they don't have enough of the middle age core - the guys like Stoll, Greene, Torres would've been. That's what they need to look for.

IMO, the 3 rookies would have a shot at playing IF Cogliano, Nilsson and perhaps even O'Sullivan were moved for 26-29 year old two-way vets with grit. Easier said than done, I guess.

But I'm with OB as far as the rookies + the young players already here = disaster. But then again, maybe thats fine for another year.

And I guess I'm with crash in thinking its possible for the rookies to make the lineup.

To me, you're both half right.

Of course Crashes scenario is possible, but you have a better chance with proven vs unproven.

You also have the added bonus of still having your youth available to you, so theirs really no risk.

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#91 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
December 31 2009, 12:43PM
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swany wrote:

That was in my other post playing all the young guys we will get killed for one more year BUT we will have a cap of around 44 mil. we let them play and learn with each other suck for that year pick in the top 5 again in 2011 and then make your deals, we will have 7 1st round picks ready to play and a low cap then make your deals to help out all that scoring I'm talking about being bad this year and next while we let the kids grow, we add a Hall this year a top 5 next year and have a ton of cash to spend.

And if the goal is to be bad for more then this year, then your plan is fine. You need to be able to handle that they could be bad for 2/3/4 more years though. Not just one more after this.

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#92 Rogue
December 31 2009, 12:44PM
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If, and I mean IF, the oil get Hall, and Eberle and MPS also in the lineup next year we will still need a vet or 2 to teach/protect these guys. Better figure out how that is worked into the big scheme.

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#93 RossCreekNation
December 31 2009, 12:46PM
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@OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

You're in Calgary right?

Just wondering where your Nystrom love comes from. I don't recall seeing it before. As a Flames fan, I love him and am just wondering if you watch many Flames games and like him or just simply pulled his name out of the hat as an example of a guy who fits.

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#94 swany
December 31 2009, 12:46PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

This past summer was (and this next summer will be) the greatest bargin hunting time we've seen. Re-read the first post in the thread.

Depth players will be plentiful and cheap this summer. Now is the time to add them on bargin contracts.

Sharp was just an example (a dream if you will) but Chicago HAS to move salary this summer. Something like Cogs+pick+prospect may be of interest.

Our old guys can be traded for very low picks or prospects that will never be. We then replace them with younger role players (Nystrom) who can be had on the cheap.

You are right Sharp can be had for your package but you forgot our cap WE can't afford him, unless we send out salary someplace else did you see at HF boards that with everyone healthy the Oil are at 59.6 mil in cap that's 3 mil over we are lucky guys got hurt, believe me I like your plan I don't want to suck for another year, but we also NEED cap space and it won't happen unless we just start moving some guys other than Cogs Nilsson, Souray has to go Moreau Pies that's 10 mil in those guys alone and they won't be here when this team is ready to compete anyways.

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#95 swany
December 31 2009, 12:49PM
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Rogue wrote:

If, and I mean IF, the oil get Hall, and Eberle and MPS also in the lineup next year we will still need a vet or 2 to teach/protect these guys. Better figure out how that is worked into the big scheme.

As a core I mentioned keeping Penner, Hemmer, Vish, Horc, Studs is a good guy to keep around at 650K also shows guys how to work. Protect I say keep JFJ and Storts, add the three kids and a faceoff PK guy 25-30 years old.

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#96 Chris.
December 31 2009, 12:52PM
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I think the notion that young guys need to play together to develop "chemistry" is laughable. It's like putting together a group of apprentice carpenters to build phase one of a condo complex and just hoping that by phase three they somehow all become solid professionals.

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#97 crash
December 31 2009, 12:53PM
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swany wrote:

And where are you going to get 4 or 5 guys in there mid 20's all the other teams are going to line up and trade these guys to us why? Do you see Moreau getting a Sharp, or Byfglien(sp)If your Idea would work why not do it now, tell me some of these guys you have in mind are because if I was GM no way I trade my guys in there 20's for guys in there 30's. Plus all these guys in there 20's will be under contract or RFA require offer sheets

Again, just IMO...but I think you can add the players and yes it's not easy and also play the 3 teenagers next year.

In my example in post 53 I have added Sharp (28), Tootoo (27), Armstrong (27) and Barker (24) to go along with Hemsky, Penner, Horcoff, Strudwick or Staios, Stortini, Brule, Gagner, Smid, Vishnovsky, Gilbert, MPS, Eberle and maybe Hall...that's a big maybe as we are well ahead of Carolina.

Gone are Nilsson, Pouliot, Moreau, Pisani, Cogliano, Potulny, Souray, Grebs.

To get Tootoo and Armstrong would require outbidding other teams as they are UFA's

Word is Chicago needs to dump salary without taking salary on and finishing low in the standings would give the Oil some good picks to trade. You might be able to package a Cogs and a pick or 2 to take a run at Barker and/or Sharp or maybe even Seabrook as Chicago may not be able to afford his salary soon.

So again, I think we can add what Ogden wants plus play the 3 new youngsters...well 2 anyway (Eberle and MPS)

All of this hinges also on being able to trade one of Souray or Vishnovsky as well as Cogliano and Moreau. Nilsson would have to be traded or waived as well.

So Ogden, what don't we get?

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#98 Chris.
December 31 2009, 01:11PM
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@crash

Archeologuy, the various Ogden's, Jon Willis, Ross Creek, several dozens of others, and myself spent all summer building, and rebuilding this team a thousand times over. Eventually, however, all that really happened in the real world was a lateral goalie swap, and the signing of yet another smallish skilled forward.

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#99 crash
December 31 2009, 01:12PM
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crash wrote:

Again, just IMO...but I think you can add the players and yes it's not easy and also play the 3 teenagers next year.

In my example in post 53 I have added Sharp (28), Tootoo (27), Armstrong (27) and Barker (24) to go along with Hemsky, Penner, Horcoff, Strudwick or Staios, Stortini, Brule, Gagner, Smid, Vishnovsky, Gilbert, MPS, Eberle and maybe Hall...that's a big maybe as we are well ahead of Carolina.

Gone are Nilsson, Pouliot, Moreau, Pisani, Cogliano, Potulny, Souray, Grebs.

To get Tootoo and Armstrong would require outbidding other teams as they are UFA's

Word is Chicago needs to dump salary without taking salary on and finishing low in the standings would give the Oil some good picks to trade. You might be able to package a Cogs and a pick or 2 to take a run at Barker and/or Sharp or maybe even Seabrook as Chicago may not be able to afford his salary soon.

So again, I think we can add what Ogden wants plus play the 3 new youngsters...well 2 anyway (Eberle and MPS)

All of this hinges also on being able to trade one of Souray or Vishnovsky as well as Cogliano and Moreau. Nilsson would have to be traded or waived as well.

So Ogden, what don't we get?

I guess we'd have to also move POS:

If we blow it up like most of us are wanting and as Brownlee suggested we could see Nilsson, POS, Moreau, Staios and Souray moved and not resign Pisani, Grebs and Pouliot. This would take 21.45 million off the salary cap.

Room to play?

Eberle and MPS would have to come in on entry level contracts.

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#100 crash
December 31 2009, 01:14PM
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Chris. wrote:

Archeologuy, the various Ogden's, Jon Willis, Ross Creek, several dozens of others, and myself spent all summer building, and rebuilding this team a thousand times over. Eventually, however, all that really happened in the real world was a lateral goalie swap, and the signing of yet another smallish skilled forward.

Well here's hoping that management finally realizes the need for sweeping changes

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