A weekend out in Hogtown

Jason Gregor
February 09 2009 12:08PM

gregorhogtown

Monday musings from a hockey world so screwed up that it seems more people are for Sean Avery returning to the NHL than those who want to keep fighting in the game. Ridiculous.

Who cares about Avery? He’s a third line player. The fans don’t miss him, but I guarantee you most of them would miss fighting...

What’s the difference between Erik Cole and Ethan Moreau this year? Skate hard up and down the wing, neither passes very often and both have had a hat trick. Outside of $2 million more for Cole, I haven’t seen much of a difference.

In their three worst losses of the season, the Oilers have been outscored 27-7, yet Grebeshkov is +1 in those games. Unreal!

Sure Dwayne Roloson has made lots of saves recently, excluding the Detroit game, but it’s a bit disturbing that he’s letting in one softie a game. The Belanger goal was terrible yesterday.

The difference between a very good and elite player is Ales Hemsky. He is very good, but not elite just yet. He didn’t do anything on this three-game road trip.

Are the Kings for real? They just won in Washington and NJ. They’ve scored 28 goals in their last seven games and won six of them. They still have two five-game road trips and another six-game trip, but their offence has been really good in the last month.

For the [Off] the Record...

Flying the red-eye to Toronto is awesome. I can sleep on a plane, so the trip felt like a drive to Millet. Took off then woke up and we were there. I don’t know how people can drive in a city that big. You think the morning commute sucks here? You should see the carnage in Toronto. The freeways (yes actual freeways with no lights, unlike the garbage we have on the Henday) were jammed, and I saw more one-finger salutes in the hour trek to my hotel, than I have in the last six months on the Whitemud.

The Rush always stay at the Hilton on Richmond right in the heart of downtown, so everything you want is within walking distance... well except the TSN studio. They used to do OTR in a studio at Rogers Centre, but they recently moved the show back to the CTV/TSN studios in Scarborough. An hour cab ride.

I got to the studio at 3pm, and met the guy who set up my appearance on OTR, Collin Sood. I found out that he’s from E-town, and that he’s good buddies with some of my friends. He wants more western guys on the show. We probably met at some party in college but were too bombed to remember.

There’s a little green room where the guests sit and wait for the show or makeup. Yes, they like to touch up the guests. Michael Landsberg walks in and says hi. I had him on my show last year, but still said “nice to meet you.” I was distracted by the incredibly sexy assistant, Stephanie, a very nice girl and absolutely stunning. I think it’s a must that TV sport shows have a hot girl either on air or working behind the scenes. I can’t think of one that doesn’t. This is just another reason why sports broadcasting rocks.

I’m there for about 15 minutes, and finally Lewis Ratcliff comes out of makeup. I was juicing him pretty hard about that one. Just as he walks out of makeup Bob McGill walks in the green room. McGill grew up in Leduc, and I knew of him, so we start talking about Leduc, the Riggers and have some laughs. He has shed 25 pounds since being on the show last, so the crew is giving him props. His hat is what got him props from me. Not many guys can rock the Joey Jeremiah hat, but I thought he pulled it off quite well. I think it would be awesome if the Fedora made a come back. Who knows if the recession gets really bleak, maybe we should start wearing them to re-enact the ‘20s.

Collin says I have to get to makeup, so I make the 15 foot walk down the hall from green room and sit in the barber chair. Spring (great name for a makeup lady) dabs a few types of foundation on the chrome dome and in a matter of a minutes, I’m done. I still have no idea how Ratcliffe spent 15 minutes in here. I had just enough to cover the glare for the cameras, but was nowhere near Landsberg range. He doesn’t care what people think about his makeup, since everyone wears it. He just wears more. His son Cory works on the show, and he looked at least mid-twenties, so unless Michael started early he has to be close to 50. Looks good for the half-century mark.

We get called to the set. Landsberg is already in his chair, and looks fired up. The guy has loads of energy before coming on (in the green room they have these ENERGY balls... I wonder how many he eats before a show). Just before I went to makeup he gave me a quick inspirational speech about not holding back.

“Jump in the conversation early and often,” he said and then he punched my shoulder. He takes his show seriously, so now I’m thinking I better not be a lame ass. Then I’m thinking you just punched my shoulder. I love guys who get amped up before any sporting event, and Landsberg takes his show really seriously. I respect that.

Just before the show starts, he leans in and does the fist bump with every guy. He is really fired up. I wonder if MacT does this before games? If not, he should think about it, because all the guys are ready to go. Sure we are just talking, but I swear if he gave McGill the nod, Bobby would have dropped the Jeremiah and tossed some knuckles.

We do the first set, and during commercial Michael is pumping the guys up again.

“Good work guys... Gregor, Ratcliffe pretty good for your first time. Bobby good... John, be better,” he says laughing.

In John’s defence, he arrived a minute before the show due to traffic. They did his makeup in the chair on set, so he might have been rattled.

And just before coming out of break, the knuckle touch occurs again. I never would have picked Landsberg as a touch-knuckles kind of guy. But it was just a knuckle touch, no dynamite exploding after. I wonder why that is? I guess a knuckle touch is good, but exploding dynamite too personal.

The show was fun. Afterwards I wheel over to Sportscentre. Rishaug is in town working the desk, so he gives me a tour of their set.

The war room has at least 15 desks just for guys assigned to watch games and find the best clips. Then there are writers, producers, etc. There are at least 35 people in total in one big room, and each has their own desk. It’s a pretty unique set up.

Hockey fans have it best out west

Hockey fans have it way better out west. In Toronto you get the Leafs and nothing else. Here you can watch eastern games on TSN or Sportsnet and then the Oil, and if you are really bored the Flamers. Highlights from an Oilers or Flames game involve a 45-second package. No wonder all of the Oiler fans out east come to the Nation now.

We also have a way better airline. West Jet kicks all of the American airlines. WJ has TVs in every row, and the seats are at least three inches wider. Flying on Alaska or Horizon sucks compared to WJ, so chalk one up for the Canadian airline. And WJ has the sweetest smelling washroom going. None of us ever want to use the airplane john, but with an early flight some times your internal clock forces you too. And the WJ john was the best.

And finally we should send a petition to Mayor Mandel for more cabs. In Toronto when you leave the club at 2 or 3 am it takes you 30 seconds to get a cab. Here in E-town, they are as rare as an Oilers four-game winning streak. How often have you almost come to blows with some guy trying to get a cab? Or you do your best Donovan Bailey impersonation down the street to flag one. Would getting fifty more cabs on Friday and Saturday nights be that tough?

In the Big Smoke they are everywhere, not to mention the sweet polish sausage street vendors. Why don’t we have those? I love Funky Pickle Pizza at the end of the night, but the Polish sausages were money. And I saw one of the toughest cat fights ever on Friday night. These two ladies -- and I use that term loosely -- chucked them hard outside of the Century club. Normally watching two chicks go at it is a freaky turn-on because you hope they might start groping each other, but these two were throwing bombs. Both were bloodied after. Another reason why Edmonton ladies are better.

And the Oilers don’t practice today. They’re back at it tomorrow in preparation for their tilt against the Habs. No one is more excited about a possible Laraque/MacIntyre battle than Brownlee. He’s been talking about it all year, and I guarantee he will stir the pot in the next few days leading up to Wednesday.

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 bosman
February 09 2009, 12:19PM
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difference between Cole and Moreau. one takes stupid penalties (trying to lead by example), the other draws penalties. Not sure that's worth $2M though.

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#2 Rudey99
February 09 2009, 12:21PM
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Great blog Gregor! Thought you did fantastic on OTR given the short time frame for actual debate. I look forward to this afternoon to hear more about the experience.

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#3 Jonathan Willis
February 09 2009, 12:33PM
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What’s the difference between Erik Cole and Ethan Moreau this year? Skate hard up and down the wing, neither passes very often and both have had a hat trick. Outside of $2 million more for Cole, I haven’t seen much of a difference.

The one really significant difference is penalties, as bosman mentioned above. Cole's taken 12 and drawn 30, while Moreau's taken 20 and drawn 12.

And I know you meant this year, but Erik Cole's having the worst offensive season of his career, while Moreau's on pace for the best year of his career; I'd say this is as close as the two will ever get performance-wise.

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#4 Jack Bauer
February 09 2009, 12:47PM
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The rumors are starting to swirl that Cole is one and done with this city. What do you guys think?

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#5 Dana @ AgileStyle
February 09 2009, 12:51PM
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@ Jack Bauer: Rumors from where?

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#6 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 12:52PM
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Jack Bauer wrote:

The rumors are starting to swirl that Cole is one and done with this city. What do you guys think?

they are 5 points out of the bottom of the confrence. It's time to not try for a first round sh*t kick and go get another Gagner level draft pick. Get some assets for Cole and a few other spare parts on this team and make a splash in the summer. The Hawks, Caps, Pens, Kings have all done this and they will all be better than the Oilers for years to come if things don't change.

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#7 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 12:55PM
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Dana @ AgileStyle wrote:

@ Jack Bauer: Rumors from where?

The Hockey news and sportsnet have both talked about a trade with Boston.

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#8 socaldave
February 09 2009, 12:57PM
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@ Jack Bauer: man, I sure hope not. I'd be pumped to see him play in his natural/preferred/best position for a whole season!

oh... wait...

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#9 rindog
February 09 2009, 01:00PM
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"The difference between a very good and elite player is Ales Hemsky. He is very good, but not elite just yet. He didn’t do anything on this three-game road trip."

While agree that he was not nearly a big enough factor, I wonder how many elite players would make a big impact playing on a line with the likes of Brodziak, Moreau, a struggling Cogliano, etc.

I am not trying to make excuses for the guy (or maybe I am), but the Oilers NEED to get a topline guy to play with Hemsky....

Most of the other ELITE players in the league have another elite player to help them out. I can't actually think of another elite player that is having any success by himself this year???

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#10 Jason Gregor
February 09 2009, 01:10PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

The one really significant difference is penalties, as bosman mentioned above. Cole’s taken 12 and drawn 30, while Moreau’s taken 20 and drawn 12.

He draws more penalties...that is his value. I'm gonna pay a guy 4 million because he draws penalties. That's my point. He has done nothing. Everyone blamed MacTavish for his slow start, well he had a good stretch of games, has been playing with Gagner when healthy and he has done nothing the past ten games.

I find it interesting that people rip on Moreau and want to ship him out of town, but think Cole is the second coming. The stats don't lie, Cole has been brutal and you can't blame it just on coaching.

And Moreau is not on pace for a career year. He is on pace for 18 goals..He scored 20 and 32 points in 2004. This is the type of season he has had before. Five times he has potted between 27-32 points. That's the player he is. That's my whole point. Moreau is playing to the level he has shown before, while Cole is well below. Last year he scored 22 goals in more games than the previous two years where he scored 29 and 30. Is he on a decline. Outside of a 15 game stretch he has not come close to a power forward. And actually Jim Matheson reported it first that the Bruins are interested in Cole.

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#11 Wangtaco
February 09 2009, 01:13PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Sure, trade rumours have been mentioned. At what point was there any mention whatsoever that he was unhappy playing here? Just because he hasn't signed a contract yet doesn't mean he won't.

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#12 OvenChicken8
February 09 2009, 01:15PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Moreau is playing to the level he has shown before, while Cole is well below. Last year he scored 22 goals in more games than the previous two years where he scored 29 and 30. Is he on a decline. Outside of a 15 game stretch he has not come close to a power forward. And actually Jim Matheson reported it first that the Bruins are interested in Cole.

So, in your opinion, would this show more on Cole poor performance or the coaching of MacT? To me this just shows us that Cole does not fit in well here, and if we can get something for him from Boston then lets get what we can before losing him for nothing.

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#13 Jason Gregor
February 09 2009, 01:16PM
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rindog wrote:

Most of the other ELITE players in the league have another elite player to help them out. I can’t actually think of another elite player that is having any success by himself this year???

Make up your mind. When he plays great it is because he carries Horcoff you say...now it's his linemates? That is my point...He is very good, but not elite just yet. The elite players make those around them better.

Who is Boston is so much better than Horcoff for Savard? The team is better, but how much of that falls on the playmaking of Savard.

My point is Hemsky needs to be more consistent to be an elite player.

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#14 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:17PM
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Wangtaco wrote:

At what point was there any mention whatsoever that he was unhappy playing here? Just because he hasn’t signed a contract yet doesn’t mean he won’t.

It's not a matter of him not being happy here. You shouldn't be happy with him here. As Greggor pointed out above, 4 mill he is not worth. I say get anything you can before the deadline for him. I've watched all season and still I cannot for the life of me figure out why the Oilers had such a hard on for him as far back as 3-4 years ago when the rumours of hime getting traded here first started. I can't say anything more than what Greggor perfectly pointed out in comment #10

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#15 Rick
February 09 2009, 01:18PM
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OvenChicken8 wrote:

So, in your opinion, would this show more on Cole poor performance or the coaching of MacT?

Out of curiosity and getting past the first 9 games where he played LW, how would coaching play into Cole's crappy play?

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#16 Smokin' Ray
February 09 2009, 01:20PM
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Or... Hemsky can suck it up and ride shotgun with Gagner and Cole. But Hemmer won't play the left side. Why not? Lord knows, he spends a lot of time over there anyways. Cole tried it. Hemsky's turn.

As far as Erik Cole rumors: I believe that Tambo or Lowe said (a month ago???) that he MAY be traded if a deal can not be reached before the trade deadline. Anyone else hear this? I want him to stay... but it is what it is. No deal. No stay.

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#17 OvenChicken8
February 09 2009, 01:22PM
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@ Rick: I would have to say the line juggling, playing him 3rd line minutes etc. A better player would be able to break out and provide something other than just drawing penalties, in my opinion. My point above wasn't that MacT is a bad coach, it was more for the point that Cole just doesn't fit in well here.

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#18 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:22PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

When he plays great it is because he carries Horcoff you say…now it’s his linemates?

Oh man I hate that from these people. I'm sick of people harping about Horcoff this year. He is being used as an "everything" player by MacT because he is the only guy who can do it. He is overworked defensively so he hasn't been able to fire on all cyliders offensively. And Carrying around an extra 245lbs on your back surely must drag him down. I'll keep Horcoff thank you very much.

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#19 Jason Gregor
February 09 2009, 01:23PM
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OvenChicken8 wrote:

So, in your opinion, would this show more on Cole poor performance or the coaching of MacT? To me this just shows us that Cole does not fit in well here, and if we can get something for him from Boston then lets get what we can before losing him for nothing.

I think the Oilers might consider moving him regardless of where they sit come March 4th. They still want to sign a top-six guy, and they can't afford both Cole and a new guy at 4 million plus.

I spoke to the beat guy in Carolina over the weekend and he said Cole's game really dropped last year, and now it looks like a continuation of that. Trying him on left wing for preseason and first few games shouldn't have ruined him. It hurt a bit, but he has been given PP time, and been with Gagner and Nilsson for the last month. Nilsson has seven points in last seven games, so it's not like Cole is playing with duds.

As for him not being happy in Edmonton, that has never been brought up by him or have I heard that from any of his teammates. IN fact, he talked about how great it was to build a back yard rink for his little guy to skate on.

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#20 Wangtaco
February 09 2009, 01:23PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Sorry; I submitted too fast. If you meant that the Oil might be done with him I would see your point. That being said, I hope not. I agree that the teams you mentioned pulled it together in a big way by sacrificing for a few years, but I think Cole still has a lot to offer this team. His points aren't there, sure, but I would love this guy on the third line with Moreau. That's a tough, gritty line...now he'd just have to agree to a much more modest contract...odds are low I suppose.

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#21 Jason Gregor
February 09 2009, 01:24PM
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Smokin' Ray wrote:

Or… Hemsky can suck it up and ride shotgun with Gagner and Cole. But Hemmer won’t play the left side. Why not? Lord knows, he spends a lot of time over there anyways. Cole tried it. Hemsky’s turn.

Ray,

Nilsson has seven points in last seven games why do you want to break that line up?

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#22 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:26PM
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Smokin' Ray wrote:

Hemsky can suck it up and ride shotgun with Gagner and Cole. But Hemmer won’t play the left side. Why not? Lord knows, he spends a lot of time over there anyways. Cole tried it. Hemsky’s turn.

Hemsky IS the offense on this team, he gets a by to do whatever he wants and what works for him and that is fine by me. He is the only one all year who has consistently brought his A game. He is the heart of their attack and if a player can't play with Hemsky then he is not a legitimate top 6 guy. And I don't want him. Thanks for coming Cole...

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#23 Jonathan Willis
February 09 2009, 01:29PM
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@ Jason Gregor:

Cole's been a major disappointment this season for sure; I'd expect him to bounce back somewhat next year based on his past history.

Here are Moreau's best (offensive) seasons to date:

96-97: 82GP - 15G - 16A - 31PTS 99-00: 73GP - 17G - 10A - 27PTS 02-03: 78GP - 14G - 17A - 31PTS 03-04: 81GP - 20G - 12A - 32PTS 05-06: 74GP - 11G - 16A - 27PTS

Right now, he's on pace for 19 goals and 13 assists, for 32 points, so I'm wrong to say he's on pace for a career season because he'd be one goal behind his 2003-04 pace, but it's close. My point is that Moreau isn't likely to be much better than he is right now, while Cole based on past history should be.

It's still probably not a bad idea to strongly consider trading Cole; even without him being a pending UFA and this team unlikely to go past the 1st round, the strength of this team's forward corps is at RW, and they need to reallocate some of that money to finding a guy to play LW on the first line.

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#24 OvenChicken8
February 09 2009, 01:32PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

They still want to sign a top-six guy, and they can’t afford both Cole and a new guy at 4 million plus. I spoke to the beat guy in Carolina over the weekend and he said Cole’s game really dropped last year, and now it looks like a continuation of that. Trying him on left wing for preseason and first few games shouldn’t have ruined him. It hurt a bit, but he has been given PP time, and been with Gagner and Nilsson for the last month. Nilsson has seven points in last seven games, so it’s not like Cole is playing with duds.

It's weird to see a guy in his early 30's career actually going downhill when he should be peaking at this point in time. It seems like he is just lacking confidence and holding his stick way too tight.

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#25 Rick
February 09 2009, 01:32PM
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OvenChicken8 wrote:

@ Rick: I would have to say the line juggling, playing him 3rd line minutes etc.

Geez, I don't know about that. I don't think that there is a player in the league that doesn't get shifted around the line up as situations call for it and is expected to play with different line mates in an attempt to shake things up.

Maybe you're right and he simply isn't a fit but it seems that for the last 30 games or so he has been playing pretty much the same role that he did in Carolina.

This season's performance is all on him and although it's unfair to write off his career to date on one crappy season I don't think the Oilers can afford to take a chance on him beyond this year after seeing that he is capable such a bi-polar game.

They already got that guy in Penner and even just entertaining the thought of committing significant dollars to a guy that can burn so hot and cold doesn't really give me the warm fuzzies.

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#26 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:33PM
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OvenChicken8 wrote:

It seems like he is just lacking confidence and holding his stick way too tight.

It seems like he just plain sucks. Haha

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#27 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:37PM
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Trade Cole and Nilsson, and one of the puck moving D. Find a REAL top left winger. Move Penner to the second line with Cogs and Gags. Make the Third as Moreau-Brodz-Pisani. Have JFJ-Pouliot-Stortini as your fourth and you are set. Damn I am smrt.

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#28 Jack Bauer
February 09 2009, 01:37PM
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Cole is definitly not playing 3rd line minutes, and he hasnt for some time. Perhaps John can put some stats for his ice time, but lately hes been at 20 minutes.

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#29 RobinB
February 09 2009, 01:38PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: You've basically agreed with Jason. What makes Cole worth $2 million more?

And how does the distinct possiblity Cole is on the decline because of age and other factors impact this past history you mention and your expectation he'll bounce back? Cole's best years are becoming ancient history, and he's on the downhill side of 30 now.

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#30 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:40PM
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Travis Dakin wrote:

Trade Cole and Nilsson, and one of the puck moving D. Find a REAL top left winger. Move Penner to the second line with Cogs and Gags. Make the Third as Moreau-Brodz-Pisani. Have JFJ-Pouliot-Stortini as your fourth and you are set. Damn I am smrt.

Check that, get rid of Pouliot too and pick up a Veteran centre for face offs and PK. Sorry about the oversight.

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#31 APE
February 09 2009, 01:40PM
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@ Travis Dakin: Taking faceoffs makes him overworked? I don't buy it. He gets paid to produce, offensively and defensively. To me, he is only doing half of what he should. He needs to bare down and bury some of the chances he gets. At the end of the day, the Oilers mgmt needs to find a suitable LW and stop trying to turn other players into one.

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#32 BUCK75
February 09 2009, 01:45PM
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@ Gregor

Way to give props to my hometown...Millet ;)

I watched your appearance - I never watch Off the Record, mostly because of the time it is on I guess. It seems a little crazy every panelist fighting to be heard. You did a good job getting your opinions across even, although that Marlie's broadcaster knows everything & you are obviously a schill. He likes the sound of his own voice...

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#33 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:46PM
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@ APE:

Horcoff's been making the GLARING holes and weaknesses on this team a little bit smaller. Watch the game, if there is a PK, PP, Important D zone face off, Offensive face off, extra attacker, it's ALWAYS Horcoff hoping over the boards. He is not being allowed to be the Top line center. He is too busy covering the ass of the guys that put this weak team together. And that would tire any mortal out.

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#34 Matty31
February 09 2009, 01:47PM
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Gregor....tell us about the dragons you slayed in T.O. I hear the chicks are snotty.

In the clubs you could have busted out "hey ladies I was on off the record today....why dont you come back to my crib ill show you my signed landsberg hat!"

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#35 bingofuel
February 09 2009, 01:47PM
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BUCK75 wrote:

[...] although that Marlie’s broadcaster knows everything & you are obviously a schill. He likes the sound of his own voice…

I take it you're being sarcastic?

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#36 BUCK75
February 09 2009, 01:49PM
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Also Robin or Gregor the hack blogger Eklund say Vermette to Edmonton. What is the word?

As an aside I noticed the anomymous hockey blogger was doing some name dropping on the weekend. Spector & Matheson, were 2 guys he gets info from?!?!? He can't be serious...

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#37 Wangtaco
February 09 2009, 01:49PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

They still want to sign a top-six guy, and they can’t afford both Cole and a new guy at 4 million plus.

If they got rid of Cole, it would continue a trend that has been happening for the past few years, where the team disposes of a recently acquired player after one year: Lupul, Pitkanen...possibly Cole. These are players that were primarily valued due to potential, excluding Cole. I don't know about anyone else, but doesn't it get frustrating to see a team release a player they've had for only a short while?

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#38 BUCK75
February 09 2009, 01:49PM
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@ bingofuel: Very much so - I haven't figured out the sarcasm emoticon yet. ^o)

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#39 APE
February 09 2009, 01:51PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Thats why he was given the contract he was given. Zetterberg and Datysuk kill penalties and they still produce. First line players can still play defense and score.

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#40 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:51PM
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Wangtaco wrote:

where the team disposes of a recently acquired player after one year: Lupul, Pitkanen…possibly Cole

I think that says a TONNE about the scouts.

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#41 BUCK75
February 09 2009, 01:54PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Maybe it says more about the way these players are used once they get here. Pitkanen was effective when he wasn't making up injuries. It can be argued that Cole & Lupul have been miscast during their time in Oilers uniforms.

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#42 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:55PM
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APE wrote:

@ Travis Dakin: Thats why he was given the contract he was given. Zetterberg and Datysuk kill penalties and they still produce. First line players can still play defense and score.

But those guys have a supporting cast. Horcoff is producing. He does EVERYTHING night in night out on a sh*t team. He spends most of his ice time covering everybody elses weaknesses so it isn't a complete blowout every single game. I think you are the only person in the world that could argue with me about him being over worked. It is the coaching and heartless personnel (read: Penner, Nilsson,) and guys who like Pouliot that are the reason for the lack of success on this team.

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#43 Wangtaco
February 09 2009, 01:55PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

Yes! Couldn't agree more. Here's to the Oil spending their free-agent mad money to lure the entire Detroit scouting staff over here!

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#44 APE
February 09 2009, 01:56PM
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Lupul is on pace for 25 goals this year. Food for thought..

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#45 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 01:59PM
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@ BUCK75:

Pitkanen fought with one of his own team mates at a practice on Philly. He came with the tag of being a loner and a disinterested team player but that didn't stop the Oilers from trying. Seems that is exactly what he was here. As for Lupul, he was brought here as the center piece of the Pronger trade. Totally mis judged by the scouts. Watch him skate for 2 minutes and you realize that he stands straight up making him have zero strength on the puck. He will never be a top line player which is what the scouts here somehow believed he would be. I don't blame Lupul. he is what he is, they Oilers picked what was in the mystery box as opposed to taking the boat.

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#46 Jonathan Willis
February 09 2009, 02:02PM
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@ RobinB:

I agree with Jason that for 2-million more Cole isn't the right fit for this team. I don't agree that he has roughly the same value as Moreau.

Cole may be on the downswing; his points totals have been trending down since Brooks Orpik broke his neck. That said, dropping from 51 points to 34 (which he's on pace for) is so dramatic that I have trouble believing it's going to happen again. I mean, that's the worst total of his career; even as a 23-year old rookie he was more productive.

I'm not going to be dogmatic about it because we won't know for another year, but if I had to bet I'd guess he returns to the 40-50 point range - you know, Dustin Penner territory ;)

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#47 APE
February 09 2009, 02:03PM
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@ Travis Dakin: I never said he was the reason our team sucks. Forget about Datysuk and Zetterberg, my point was that their are other first line players in the league who contribute offensively and defensively so he should still be expected to produce.

Don't get me wrong, I like Horcoff. The whole reason he is put in this situation is because the Oilers management want him to be both players instead of one or the other.

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#48 BUCK75
February 09 2009, 02:06PM
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@ Travis Dakin:

I follow your logic now. It seems that the players who come here are always looked upon to exceed expectations. Most of the time they don't even live up to minimum expectations. No win situations in every example you pointed out.

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#49 Travis Dakin
February 09 2009, 02:10PM
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@ BUCK75: Exactly, managemen overvalues these guys when they come in, in the faint hope that they may have a steal on their hands. Too busy throwing things blindly against a wall hoping it sticks when they should actually be out looking for some real industrial strength adhesive.

@ APE: I never said he was the reason either. My point was that he is doing everything he can to help and without him, we'd all be talking about wether we should take Taveres or Hedman. It's all management's fault. Oh look, that's what you said at the end... Sorry haha.

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#50 APE
February 09 2009, 02:14PM
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@ Travis Dakin: I wish we were talking about Tavares or Hedman.

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