Tom Preissing on Waivers

Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009 08:43AM

Preissing

Dean Lombardi has placed defenseman Tom Preissing on waivers (H/T to Puck Daddy). Lombardi’s a pretty bright guy; a big chunk of that San Jose Sharks team chewing up the league right now was his creation (not to take credit away from Doug Wilson, but he had a nice base to build from). Let’s take a quick look at Preissing’s numbers over the past four seasons:

  • 2008-09: 22GP – 3G – 4A – 7PTS, -7
  • 2007-08: 77GP – 8G – 16A – 24PTS, -6
  • 2006-07: 80GP – 7G – 31A – 38PTS, +40

That’s a pretty funny career curve, and nicely highlights some of the problems with straight +/-. Here’s the +/- for Preissing’s teams over these seasons:

  • 2008-09: -19
  • 2007-08: -35
  • 2006-07: +67

That clears up a bit of the confusion; obviously Preissing’s +/- has to a large degree reflected the success of his team. Still, let’s go one step further and look at his even-strength advanced statistics:

  • 2008-09: QC-7th, QT-7th, Corsi/60-2nd, PTS/60-5th (0.47)
  • 2007-08: QC-5th, QT-1st, Corsi/60-4th, PTS/60- 5th (0.74)
  • 2006-07: QC-6th, QT-4th

Looking at this, we see that Preissing has always played third pairing opponents, and that this year he has had lower quality teammates than he has previously, which might partially explain why his +/- is so poor this season (he’s on pace to record a +/- four times worse than the number he posted last year).

Still, there’s a more obvious explanation. Using Vic Ferrari’s Time On Ice tool, we can see something more interesting. Preissing’s Corsi number is quite good, but L.A’s a bit of a shot-happy team, so it’s probably inflated a bit. Let’s compare four numbers, all at even-strength:

  • Team Average SH%: 6.4%
  • SH% with Preissing on the ice: 4.6%
  • Team Average SV%: .918
  • SV% with Preissing on ice: .882

In short, Preissing’s getting destroyed by the bounces. He’s played just over 20 games, so the smaller sample size makes the effect more pronounced, and he hasn’t gone from a decent third-pairing defenseman to garbage over the summer.

Still, despite the fact that Preissing is better than his counting numbers would indicate (and yes, I know he’s softer than butter), I wouldn’t pick him up on waivers. He’s being paid 2.75M per season through 2010-11; that’s outrageous money for a third pairing defenseman. At a guess, I’d say someone was unduly influenced by his +/- on a strong team, and his points scoring on a better powerplay. He’s a third-pairing defenseman who qualifies as a low-level special teams option. Lombardi’s right to put him on waivers and try to clear some cap space, but he’s probably already too late.

The real question, for Oilers fans: if Tom Preissing is getting this sort of treatment, what kind of treatment is Steve Staios going to get over the next couple of seasons? Staios is paid 2.7M per season through 2010-11; he has 8 points and is -6 through 60 games this season. I really don’t know if he’s tradeable.

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, 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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#1 Chad
March 03 2009, 09:04AM
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Don't the Oil has any desire to trade Steady Steve

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#2 The Towel Boy
March 03 2009, 09:04AM
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There are some that believe that Staios brings more to the table than points, +/-, corsi numbers and strong defensive zone play.

Things like veteran leadership and a nice smile could be considered a tradeable facet of his game....maybe? I like his moxie and his willingness to get down on the ice to block a shot too.

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#3 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 09:18AM
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The Towel Boy wrote:

There are some that believe that Staios brings more to the table than points, +/-, corsi numbers and strong defensive zone play. Things like veteran leadership and a nice smile could be considered a tradeable facet of his game….maybe? I like his moxie and his willingness to get down on the ice to block a shot too.

I sure hope. Because that 2.7 million he's getting paid in 2010-11 could cost this team dearly.

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#4 rindog
March 03 2009, 09:29AM
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@ The Towel Boy:

Should blocking shots really considered a strength?

Or is it an act of desperation trying to cover-up for mistakes made elsewhere?

Take Detroit for example. They do not have one defenseman in the top 50 for blocked shots.

Could it be that they rely on a system that tries to eliminate the opposition from taking shots rather than trying to have their defenseman try to block them?

Just a thought??

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#5 Fiveandagame
March 03 2009, 09:37AM
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I think we could all agree when Steve Staios is playing mean and is in the game he brings intangibles to the team. When he is at his best he's a great 3rd pairing guy.

When he's not....

But as the games get tighter having a guy who's seen it all on your bottom pairing isn't a bad thing.

Thankfully his play has picked up of late and we're not seeing his defensive ineptitude rearing it's head as often. Bad decisions and being out muscled is not something you want from your veteran shut down guy.

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#6 The Towel Boy
March 03 2009, 09:38AM
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@ Jonathan Willis:

Yeah, I will agree his salary is a bit on the side of "handcuffing".

@ rindog:

Well, blocking shots in it self is an individual strength, yes...but having to do it a lot I'll agree is more of a team deficiency than anything else.

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#7 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 09:40AM
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Blocking shots is a double-edged sword. You love to see the character and willingness to sacrifice the body that doing it takes, plus of course it helps keep shots from getting to the net.

On the other hand, if you're blocking a lot, it's probably a good sign that you're stuck in your end of the rink more often than not.

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#8 The Towel Boy
March 03 2009, 09:48AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

On the other hand, if you’re blocking a lot, it’s probably a good sign that you’re stuck in your end of the rink more often than not.

I wonder if you get hit with a shot in front of the opposition net if you get credit for blocking a shot. haha.

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#9 Bruno
March 03 2009, 09:49AM
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rindog wrote:

an act of desperation trying to cover-up for mistakes made elsewhere?

You got a great point. As much as I admire Staios for his heart, I do believe he has to sacrafice his body to contribute or else he does not offer much, on the ice.As for leadership he is probally respected, for his sacrafice.rindog wrote:

tries to eliminate the opposition from taking shots

If thats the case thier not doing a great job of it. There is far and few between games that the Oilers outshoot the opposition. And somtimes its embarassing. So, I myself do not consider it a strength for the team. 2.7 mill next year ..Ouch!

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#10 Pokie Reddik
March 03 2009, 09:51AM
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The Oilers are also looking for a goaltender? from Mckenzie.

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#11 APE - FMNF
March 03 2009, 09:58AM
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It's more the willingness to sacrifce the body for the betterment of the team is what sets him apart. I've seen him drop down numerous times face first. That's the kind of effort that lifts the bench and gets the attention of your teammates.

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#12 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 10:02AM
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@ Pokie Reddik:

I'd love to see Staios and JDD moved for Gerber - the reason being that Gerber's ugly contract expires after this season.

It's nothing against Staios, who is one of my personal favorites; he's just getting paid too much for too long, and the Oilers look to be in serious cap trouble for 2010-11.

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#13 Harlie Chuddy
March 03 2009, 10:03AM
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TP is 31yrs old, 6' tall, 205lbs. Making 2.75 until the end of the 10/11 season. I thought he looked good back in 06' but I haven't noticed him much since. Obviously his numbers have reflected the same thing.

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#14 cambosmash
March 03 2009, 10:07AM
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Staios is good at what he does. Takes the body, blocks shots, and retrieves the puck from the corners (3rd pairing skills). Unfortunately his only options when he has the puck are 'hard around' or 'suicide pass into defensive partner's skates'. Cap hit of $2.7M this year was too much, and he's under contract until 2011...

Also, for being a vet, it seems odd that Staios always starts the season slow and finishes so hard. You'd think he'd wear down as the season progressed. He knows what it takes to play in this league. Does he need the games to mean more before he reaches his potential?

He's a warrior and he'll play his contract out here, but I wish it was for half price.

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#15 I'm a Scientist!
March 03 2009, 10:08AM
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The Towel Boy wrote:

I wonder if you get hit with a shot in front of the opposition net if you get credit for blocking a shot. haha.

Then Penner would be leading our team in blocked shots!!!

I am a Scientist!

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#16 I'm a Scientist!
March 03 2009, 10:08AM
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p.s. Avery just got claimed off waivers by NYR...big surprise.

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#17 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 10:09AM
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Pokie Reddik wrote:

The Oilers are also looking for a goaltender? from Mckenzie.

Did McKenzie say if the Oilers were looking for a long-haul goaltender, or just someone to split the job with Roli right now?

Because as it stands, there isn't a starter under contract for next season.

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#18 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 10:11AM
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I'm a Scientist! wrote:

p.s. Avery just got claimed off waivers by NYR…big surprise.

The combination of Tortorella and Avery should be all sorts of fun.

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#19 Peter Pan
March 03 2009, 10:17AM
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Our goalie situation is looking real ugly for next season. JDD can't even get a single start in months, Dubnyk isn't actually lighting it up down in the minors, and Roloson may sign else where. I was hoping for Backstrom from Minny, but he just signed for 4 years @ $24M! Who else is there? We are knee deep!

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#20 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:19AM
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I'm a Scientist! wrote:

p.s. Avery just got claimed off waivers by NYR…big surprise.

Sather would of signed him this summer for $2mm per season (hockeycentral) - so this is deja vous, he was hanging out with NYR players on NYE - noting that Brownlee thinks he is the plague - the Rangers past record is exponentially better than without him. _____________________________________________________

January 5, 2009 -- NYPOST

SEAN Avery (above) is a free agent in more ways than one. The former New York Ranger showed up at Bungalow 8 New Year's Eve on the arm of - his brother. A spy at the club said that Avery and his girlfriend of several months, Kelly Klein, have split - "They're no longer together." Avery was dumped by the Dallas Stars last month after he made a nasty comment about his ex, Elisha Cuthbert. He tried to make up for lost time at Bungalow 8, flirting with women and hanging with former teammates Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, Nigel Dawes and Marcus Nasland.

_______________________________________________________

Being a reclaim project just fits Slats mold even more - very romantic for the intern....... maybe he just didn't like Dallas and turned on Hull by opening his yap..... think before mouth opens - go bother Marty.

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#21 Rick
March 03 2009, 10:20AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Did McKenzie say if the Oilers were looking for a long-haul goaltender, or just someone to split the job with Roli right now? Because as it stands, there isn’t a starter under contract for next season.

Sort of but not really related, Backstrom just signed a 4 year at 6 mil per extension in Minny. That sucks I was really hoping he would have been the Oilers big target this summer.

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#22 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:20AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

I’m a Scientist! wrote: p.s. Avery just got claimed off waivers by NYR…big surprise. The combination of Tortorella and Avery should be all sorts of fun.

Torts is going to be the YES man here - as the GM has spoken.

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#23 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 10:21AM
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Deep Oil wrote:

He tried to make up for lost time at Bungalow 8, flirting with women and hanging with former teammates Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, Nigel Dawes and Marcus Nasland.

Either you just made that up, or the New York Post is too stupid to realize that Markus Naslund has never played with Sean Avery.

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#24 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:22AM
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Rick wrote:

Jonathan Willis wrote: Did McKenzie say if the Oilers were looking for a long-haul goaltender, or just someone to split the job with Roli right now? Because as it stands, there isn’t a starter under contract for next season. Sort of but not really related, Backstrom just signed a 4 year at 6 mil per extension in Minny. That sucks I was really hoping he would have been the Oilers big target this summer.

They just used Khabibulin template - standard deal set by the goaltenders union.

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#25 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:25AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Deep Oil wrote: He tried to make up for lost time at Bungalow 8, flirting with women and hanging with former teammates Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, Nigel Dawes and Marcus Nasland. Either you just made that up, or the New York Post is too stupid to realize that Markus Naslund has never played with Sean Avery.

I ghost write for Page 6 in New York - go fish.

http://www.nypost.com/seven/01052009/gossip/pagesix/avery_at_large_147264.htm

I didn't know there was a law in the blogosphere that you had to play with another NHLPA member to go to the bar together.

Read your comment a couple of times on how shallow it is - or you will end up like LOWE calling Burke a MORON for signing PENNER.

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#26 Pokie Reddik
March 03 2009, 10:27AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Pokie Reddik wrote: The Oilers are also looking for a goaltender? from Mckenzie. Did McKenzie say if the Oilers were looking for a long-haul goaltender, or just someone to split the job with Roli right now? Because as it stands, there isn’t a starter under contract for next season.

He said a Goalie and a top six forward and a 5th Dman. I think it is Voukon with JDD and Schremp going the otherway. MAP is too late to be put on waivers so he might be going to the pens for a late round pick.

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#27 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:35AM
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Peter Pan wrote:

Our goalie situation is looking real ugly for next season. JDD can’t even get a single start in months, Dubnyk isn’t actually lighting it up down in the minors, and Roloson may sign else where. I was hoping for Backstrom from Minny, but he just signed for 4 years @ $24M! Who else is there? We are knee deep!

The Sky is falling........

Looks like the teflon don KLOWE has another pickle to swallow - but I would offer Rolli a two year deal with reasonable cash - maybe $2mm per (security)- he has defied time and his save % is worthy - this kind of circus with Rolli playing Marty Minutes at 39 proves that he is a company man losing his job - getting it back and being a good soldier - not sure if Lowe can see for the tree's though.... two years - not crazy money - he loves it here as per his agent - Winter - remember Rollie was a cranky SOB for a while and turned it around here in ETOWN - a shot of humble pie has done wonders for him - very down to earth now. He has NEVER been a number one goalie anywhere except here.

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#28 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 10:38AM
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Deep Oil wrote:

Jonathan Willis wrote: Deep Oil wrote: He tried to make up for lost time at Bungalow 8, flirting with women and hanging with former teammates Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, Nigel Dawes and Marcus Nasland. Either you just made that up, or the New York Post is too stupid to realize that Markus Naslund has never played with Sean Avery. I ghost write for Page 6 in New York - go fish. http://www.nypost.com/seven/01052009/gossip/pagesix/avery_at_large_147264.htm I didn’t know there was a law in the blogosphere that you had to play with another NHLPA member to go to the bar together. Read your comment a couple of times on how shallow it is - or you will end up like LOWE calling Burke a MORON for signing PENNER.

So when the New York Post called Naslund Avery's former teammate, were they wrong or right. Read what you posted, read my comment.

The New York Post said that Avery went to the bar with former teammates X, Y, Z and Naslund. Naslund isn't a former teammate.

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#29 Deep Oil
March 03 2009, 10:44AM
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Pokie Reddik wrote:

The Oilers are also looking for a goaltender? from Mckenzie.

Using other people's material now that you have epxosed as a fraud. How's that new asshole that Gregor ripped you.

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#30 Harlie Chuddy
March 03 2009, 10:46AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Deep Oil wrote: Jonathan Willis wrote: Deep Oil wrote: He tried to make up for lost time at Bungalow 8, flirting with women and hanging with former teammates Scott Gomez, Chris Drury, Nigel Dawes and Marcus Nasland. Either you just made that up, or the New York Post is too stupid to realize that Markus Naslund has never played with Sean Avery. I ghost write for Page 6 in New York - go fish. http://www.nypost.com/seven/01052009/gossip/pagesix/avery_at_large_147264.htm I didn’t know there was a law in the blogosphere that you had to play with another NHLPA member to go to the bar together. Read your comment a couple of times on how shallow it is - or you will end up like LOWE calling Burke a MORON for signing PENNER. So when the New York Post called Naslund Avery’s former teammate, were they wrong or right. Read what you posted, read my comment. The New York Post said that Avery went to the bar with former teammates X, Y, Z and Naslund. Naslund isn’t a former teammate.

Avery on Naslund “It's going to be an interesting situation; certainly I'll sit back and watch. New York is a tough place to play. Markus Naslund is going to have a tough time, so is Wade Redden. New York fans aren't going to put up with those guys. I don't think that they're going to live up to the expectations." http://www2.sportsnet.ca/blogs/chris_nichols/2008/08/08/avery_blasts_redden_naslund/

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#31 TonyT
March 03 2009, 11:11AM
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I agree with Willis, Staios has been a good guy for the Oilers, but his contract as well as any other guy on the team during '06 (sans Hemsky) is not desireable and his intagibles make him the most tradeable. In terms of desire though, Horcoff's contract should be traded even for nothing, $7 mil is lofty company (even more so for a second line center).

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#32 Peter Pan
March 03 2009, 11:29AM
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Aren't the Oil lacking enough grit as it is. Staios needs to stay, because realistically, they need him. It's sad, but true. Notice how everybody wants to ditch Pisani, Moreau, Staios? They may be overpaid and over played, but doesn't every young team need veterans? Just a thought.

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#33 Jonathan Willis
March 03 2009, 11:34AM
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@ Peter Pan:

We have Smid, Strudwick and Souray on the backend for the rest of the year, and can pick up a Staios replacement in the offseason.

His 2010-11 number is way too high. Ditto Moreau.

As for Pisani, I want the Oilers to keep him - his contract runs out in 2009-10, at which point he can be resigned at a more reasonable rate.

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#34 Rick
March 03 2009, 12:51PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

His 2010-11 number is way too high. Ditto Moreau.

I disagree on Moreau's number. I think his role is to big but his price seems pretty reasonable.

As for his role, a new coach would likely adjust that and right now I think it's safe to say that a new coach will be a real possibilty heading into next season.

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