Around the Blogosphere: April 6th

Jonathan Willis
April 06 2009 03:00PM

Harding/Backstrom

Below, you’re going to see a link that takes you to an article arguing that the Oilers should sign Josh Harding to an offer sheet. The article argues that this is in the best interest of the Oilers, but what about Josh Harding? Is it fair that he continue to toil behind Nik Backstrom despite his own exceptional talents? Look how crushed he is in this picture. I’m sure it’s all he can do to put on a smile and congratulate Backstrom – all while carefully hiding his eyes from the camera, lest someone should see his real feelings.

Alright, so that’s probably out to lunch, but the article isn’t:

- Tyler argues, and argues well, that the Oilers should sign Josh Harding to an RFA offer sheet. I’ve pointed to Harding’s availability before (as have commenters here) and I don’t disagree with Tyler in the slightest. This would be a relatively cheap way to address the Oilers goaltending problems for the foreseeable future.

- David Staples has an excellent article out this morning; a long look at a single photograph from the Rick Rypien/Zack Stortini fight the other night. It’s a piece that only David Staples could have written – whether you agree or disagree with him, few people ennoble the game like he does.

- Sam Gagner continues to close in on his numbers from last season, and for the second year in a row looks like a very different player over the back half of the season.

- Relatively new blog The Church of Kurri has a strategy for NHL GM’s that he’s surprised hasn’t been used yet – dual offer sheets. I’m not going to get into it (read the full article) except to say that it’s a really good idea as far as offer sheets go, as long as you aren’t worried about the possible reprisals (like, say, if you have two hot-shot rookies who become RFA’s in a year where the cap is supposed to fall and you already have too many players under contract for too much money).

- On the other hand, it’s possible that the salary cap may not drop as much as expected (or at all!), and if so there are few teams that will benefit as much as the Oilers.

- Linus Omark has absolutely no interest in “farmarhockey”. While online Swedish to English translators produce some funny results, I’m pretty sure that means he’s not willing to sign anything other than a one-way NHL contract. Is that a good idea for the Oilers?

eberle

- Oilers prospects currently in the CHL, and where Alex Plante and Jordan Eberle project going forward. Not to put too fine a point on it, but the upside to Eberle is probably not as high as Oilers fans (or for that matter, The Hockey News) seem to believe.

- The good folks at Oilverse still believe that there’s a glimmer of hope. Just embrace the end already, you poor optimists.

- More debate on what the Craig MacTavish stick call means for his future. I can’t disagree that the stick call is probably not the right reason to fire MacTavish, but on the other hand it’s the kind of obvious symbol that’s easy to point to. Meanwhile, BDHS is another who feels that the coach will resign.

- The Oilers latest win (and some losses by a few other teams) mean that their best possible slot at the draft this summer is 8th overall.

- There’s been a lot of talk about the possible divide in the Oilers’ dressing room, and Bruce takes a look at the demographics of it. There’s a very clear divide; clearer than I expected.

- The Edmonton Oilers have been named a 2009 Great Place to Work. Quick, somebody pass the word along to Marian Hossa.

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Jonathan Willis is Managing Editor of the Nation Network. He also currently writes for the Edmonton Journal's Cult of Hockey, Grantland, and Hockey Prospectus. His work has appeared at theScore, ESPN and Puck Daddy. He was previously founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue. Contact him at jonathan (dot) willis (at) live (dot) ca.
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#51 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 10:42AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

@ Rick: Even with the Minnesota effect, Harding’s the same age as Deslauriers and his AHL numbers are way better. He’s quality IMO.

What about trying to pry Vokoun out of Florida? Are they comfortable with Anderson? Do they want to save some??? Do they want to (partially) replace Bo?

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#52 smytty777
April 07 2009, 10:47AM
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@ Ogden Brother: Hiller still has one year left on his deal. Tyler's suggestion on the offer sheet to Harding, is for one year, for a number of reasons.

One being minimizing the risk if Harding does not play well, the other being that if Minny matches they are put in another tough position again next year.

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#53 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 10:51AM
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smytty777 wrote:

@ Ogden Brother: Hiller still has one year left on his deal. Tyler’s suggestion on the offer sheet to Harding, is for one year, for a number of reasons. One being minimizing the risk if Harding does not play well, the other being that if Minny matches they are put in another tough position again next year.

Ah, didn't realize Hiller was still under contract. I really can't see Harding accepting a one year deal. We aren't the only team in search of tending.

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#54 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 10:51AM
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Ogden Brother wrote:

Jonathan Willis wrote: @ Rick: Even with the Minnesota effect, Harding’s the same age as Deslauriers and his AHL numbers are way better. He’s quality IMO. What about trying to pry Vokoun out of Florida? Are they comfortable with Anderson? Do they want to save some??? Do they want to (partially) replace Bo?

Suppossed to be "save some $$$$"

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#55 smytty777
April 07 2009, 10:58AM
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@ Ogden Brother: That may be true, Colorado particularly seems to be in a more desperate position that we are in terms of goaltending and there is really not much available in the UFA market.

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#56 Chris
April 07 2009, 11:35AM
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topshelf FMNF wrote:

With Euro’s you never know until they are here.

So play Omark in the AHL... Let him PROVE himself on small ice. Nothing will be gained by letting him return to Europe. It's a different game entirely... If Omark wants a commitment from the Oilers than he had better show some commitment in return. One of the reasons the Oilers have been so bad, is they push young players into NHL service too soon; instead of letting them learn how to be true professionals at the AHL level.

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#57 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 11:43AM
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@ Chris: I agree. Let him prove he can score in the AHL unless he lights it up in camp and preseason.

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#58 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 11:53AM
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Chris wrote:

Linus Omark should never be compared to Zetterberg. The obvious and glaring difference is strenght on the puck. Omark is VERY unlikely to be effective on smaller ice against bigger, faster opponents. Zetterberg also brings a lot of other intangibles to the ice. (Defensive awarness, speed, strength, strong work ethic, etc)

Zetterberg brings those things now. Look, I'm not saying that Omark's going to be Zetterberg (I'd bet heavily that he isn't - Zetterberg's something else) but I am saying that he's a wild card.

Both brought over scoring (Omark actually has the edge here) but as for what else they bring over we simply don't know. Prendergast compared Omark to Thoreson - and granted, Prendergast pumps every prospect - but that would imply that Omark has a grasp on all of those intangibles you talk about.

He's a legit prospect, but even more than most his game is largely unknown.

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#59 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 11:53AM
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@ Ogden Brother:

Did you read the link? Tyler explains quite nicely why a one year deal is actually in Harding's best interest, earning potential-wise.

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#60 Chris
April 07 2009, 12:10PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Zetterberg brings those things now

Zetterberg has always had the edge in size and speed over Omark... as for defensive awarness: best learned at the AHL level. I hate prospects who think they get to dictate the terms of their development. Control of your hockey destiny is EARNED. I don't want any Euro Leaguers to walk directly on to the Oiler squad: It's an insult to everyone who has paid their dues. If Omark proves me wrong, and is able to produce at the AHL level, without being a disaster in his own end, then he will eventually get a shot with the big club.

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#61 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 12:13PM
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Chris wrote:

I hate prospects who think they get to dictate the terms of their development. Control of your hockey destiny is EARNED.

Like Gagner, Cogliano, Gilbert paid there dues? Times are changing man. Good young players don't need to toil in the minors to be "shown the ropes" like they used too. I'm not saying Omark doesn't need to spend time down there to learn but it just isn't the case for all young developing players anymore.

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#62 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 12:15PM
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Chris wrote:

I hate prospects who think they get to dictate the terms of their development. Control of your hockey destiny is EARNED.

Agreed. On the other hand, every player has a right to demand as much as he can get in a contract negotiation - that's how it works. It has nothing to do with "dictating the terms of their development" - for Omark it's about getting the best possible deal for Omark. He'd be stupid to negotiate in any other manner.

I don’t want any Euro Leaguers to walk directly on to the Oiler squad: It’s an insult to everyone who has paid their dues.

Nonsense. What in the hell is the difference if a 22 year old spent his preperatory years in the SEL or AHL? He's paying his dues either way.

And either way, if he's an NHL talent then he should be in the NHL, and if he isn't than he shouldn't. Omark will come over here, and whatever spot he earns in training camp is what he'll get. If he does earn an NHL job, it isn't in any way a "slap in the face" to the AHL'ers he passes along the way.

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#63 Game #80 Preview « The Oilverse
April 07 2009, 12:21PM
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[...] visits this blog as Jonathan Willis apparently took a break from drinking crappy American beer to take a look at our work here and apparently made it up to the end of the title of Bobby Roy’s breakdown [...]

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#64 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 12:30PM
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@ Jonathan Willis: You have a much more elegant way of portraying me views. Thank you kind sir.

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#65 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 12:33PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

@ Ogden Brother: Did you read the link? Tyler explains quite nicely why a one year deal is actually in Harding’s best interest, earning potential-wise.

That's nice, doesn't mean he would prefer that over the security of a multi year deal.

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#66 Chris
April 07 2009, 12:39PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Nonsense. What in the hell is the difference if a 22 year old spent his preperatory years in the SEL or AHL? He’s paying his dues either way.

The ice surface. The style of play. (Kinda a big deal) Also it's my belief that training camp/pre-season is too short an evaluation period for a top six roster spot... Unless we are already willing to admit the 2009/10 Oilers are going to be a disaster as well.

topshelf FMNF wrote:

Like Gagner, Cogliano, Gilbert paid there dues?

Hence the inconsistancy... These guys (Maybe not Gilbert) were pressed into NHL service too quickly. (Not their fault) Lowe has been running this franchise into the ground for years.

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#67 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 12:47PM
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Chris wrote:

Jonathan Willis wrote: Nonsense. What in the hell is the difference if a 22 year old spent his preperatory years in the SEL or AHL? He’s paying his dues either way. The ice surface. The style of play. (Kinda a big deal) Also it’s my belief that training camp/pre-season is too short an evaluation period for a top six roster spot… Unless we are already willing to admit the 2009/10 Oilers are going to be a disaster as well. topshelf FMNF wrote: Like Gagner, Cogliano, Gilbert paid there dues? Hence the inconsistancy… These guys (Maybe not Gilbert) were pressed into NHL service too quickly. (Not their fault) Lowe has been running this franchise into the ground for years.

You've got to admit the fan base would have went crazy if Gagner wasn't kept up last year.

Also, it's hard to say either of them aren't developing nicely, and if they weren't here, their would likely be far worse players in their spots.

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#68 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 12:51PM
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Chris wrote:

The ice surface. The style of play. (Kinda a big deal)

Nobody's saying that there aren't differences between North American and European hockey. What I am saying is that plenty of guys have jumped directly from the SEL to NHL and done quite well - a player can be developed quite nicely over in Europe, we just don't know if Omark has been or not.

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#69 Chris
April 07 2009, 12:55PM
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@ topshelf FMNF: @ Jonathan Willis:

This all dovetails nicely with the "room divided article". Gagner and Cogliano should have been ripping it up in Sringfield- bringing a winning culture to our sad, sad, AHL affiliate. They should have been putting pressure, from below, on guys like Torres and Stoll... Instead Lowe had to move out all the young Oilers, who were part of the cup run, to address glaring holes in the lineup; thus pressing our youth into NHL service prematurely... If Prendergast could have drafted a single sevicable D-man other than Green, the Lubo trade may not have been necessary... If Omark can walk on to this squad straight from Europe: I'm willing to predict another year outside the playoff picture for the Oilers. This simply isn't how quality organizations manage or develop prospects. If Linus is a point per game guy in Springfield, and doesn't get hurt, he will push a guy like Nilsson to be better... Or EARN his spot.

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#70 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:15PM
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@ Chris: I see your point but I have to respectfully disagree.

I don't think any NHL organization will have NHL ready players playing in the minors to develop a winning atmosphere when they have roster spots available on the big club.

If Gagner, who I'm not sure can even play in the AHL due to age, and Cogliano were in the minors, do you honestly think we would be better with Torres and Stoll instead?

The problem is that this organization has no quality depth as of right now.

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#71 smytty777
April 07 2009, 01:17PM
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Chris wrote:

If Linus is a point per game guy in Springfield

Chris, you appear to be suggesting that it is more difficult to be a point per game player in the AHL than it is in the SEL. The reverse is actually true, the SEL is a lower scoring league and based on Desjardins equivalencies appears to be the more difficult league to put up numbers in.

I take your main point to be that Omark needs to earn his spot, I don't think any can argue that yes, he must do that. But it is probably incorrect to suggest that he needs to be a point per game player in the AHL to do that. He is already a point per game player in a very tough league.

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#72 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:17PM
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topshelf FMNF wrote:

The problem is that this organization has no quality depth as of right now.

...In the minors pushing the players here to be better, like you've stated.

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#73 Chris
April 07 2009, 01:22PM
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I re-read my argument... And will immediately aggree that Gagner was a bad example; being that he was too young to be eligible to play in the AHL. Cogliano, on the other hand, could have easily been replaced on the big squad... Surely KLowe could have found a 26-32 yr old third line center to win faceoffs, kill penalties, and replace the offence Coglino brought the last two seasons... Maybe the Oil would still be in the playoff race, and Coglino would be poised to join a more unified, experienced, and quality roster in 2009/10... Nobody would be furious at Cogliano's absence, because we wouldn't know him yet... And we in Oil Country would have a pleasant surprise for once: a prospect who arrives with the big club ready to hit the ground running! Novel idea.

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#74 offside
April 07 2009, 01:31PM
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I admit that I haven't seen or heard of a lot about Omark but what I have seen looks good but I don't know if he'd be able to do it at the NHL level. He seems to be another small player that has some fancy moves, the Oilers already have a few of those players. I hope he turns out to be a star but I'm a bit skeptical. I remember a few years ago, we got our hopes up with Shremp as well.

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#75 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 01:35PM
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Chris wrote:

I re-read my argument… And will immediately aggree that Gagner was a bad example; being that he was too young to be eligible to play in the AHL. Cogliano, on the other hand, could have easily been replaced on the big squad… Surely KLowe could have found a 26-32 yr old third line center to win faceoffs, kill penalties, and replace the offence Coglino brought the last two seasons… Maybe the Oil would still be in the playoff race, and Coglino would be poised to join a more unified, experienced, and quality roster in 2009/10… Nobody would be furious at Cogliano’s absence, because we wouldn’t know him yet… And we in Oil Country would have a pleasant surprise for once: a prospect who arrives with the big club ready to hit the ground running! Novel idea.

Honestly, how many teams work like that? If guys are NHL ready (and Cogs obviously is) they are in the NHL.

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#76 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:36PM
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@ Chris: When I think of it that way, about Cogliano that is, I tend to actually agree with you. We may have been better off with a more defensive plugger type forward who could win more than 1/3 of the faceoffs he takes and actually help the PK.

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#77 Chris
April 07 2009, 01:36PM
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smytty777 wrote:

But it is probably incorrect to suggest that he needs to be a point per game player in the AHL to do that. He is already a point per game player in a very tough league.

Wrong. Omark needs to be a point/game guy at the AHL before the Oilers should consider slotting him in the top six. (Unless you envision Omark killing penalties or bringing energy on the fourth line...) As for the SEL being a tougher league... I'd say it's a DIFFERENT league. Different style, different ice, etc. I want to see Omark be effective in the North American game before I slot him in this fall... Training camp is too short a time period to do this. Rushing along young players is a disservice to the player, the club, and it's fans. I, for one, am tired of it.

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#78 Chris
April 07 2009, 01:37PM
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Ogden Brother wrote:

Honestly, how many teams work like that? If guys are NHL ready (and Cogs obviously is) they are in the NHL.

Detroit.

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#79 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:38PM
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@ offside: Schremp was good in Junior yes, but it was Junior lets not forget. Omark is actually playing against men in a professional league. Much different in my opinion.

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#80 Chris
April 07 2009, 01:41PM
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@ topshelf FMNF: Maybe Schremp would be more effective in the SEL? He is after all a good passer who just seems unable to find open ice...

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#81 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:43PM
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@ Chris: There is a good possibility.

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#82 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:45PM
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@ Chris: Schremp is a perimeter player though. From what I've seen, albeit very limited, Omark looks at least somewhat willing to enter the dangerous areas on the ice. Only time will tell if he is as willing to do it on the smaller ice surface.

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#83 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 01:49PM
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Chris wrote:

Detroit.

Henrik Zetterberg, Johan Franzen, Pavel Datsyuk and Dmitry Bykov would all disagree.

Sometimes players are ready to make the jump right out of Europe. Omark would certainly seem to be a prime candidate for that group, but only time will tell.

You can't state now with any certainty that he'll need AHL time, any more than I can state his transition to North America will be flawless.

He MAY need AHL time. That will be determined in training camp.

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#84 Chris
April 07 2009, 01:51PM
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Looking through to next year... there is a very real possibility that Cogliano will have to be moved... Terrible! And why? Because the Oilers need experience at center; and Coglino is no longer eligible to be moved up and down... So we may lose another Oiler with a great future simply because Oilers management rushed him into NHL service too soon... So Lowe, in desperate to rapidly improve the Club, has traided our youth, and cashed in all our good young prospects prematurely... leaving us no depth and a bleak future... and the Oilers missed the playoffs three times in a row anyway! (Is anyone sensing my frustration?)

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#85 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:55PM
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@ Chris: Why not move Horcoff down to line 3 and bump Gags and Cogs both up a spot?

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#86 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 01:58PM
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@ topshelf FMNF: ~Oh wait I forgot, Horcoff will be making 17 million for the next 3 seasons~

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#87 Jonathan Willis
April 07 2009, 02:00PM
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Craig MacTavish was right about Cogliano the other day - he can either start winning faceoffs or get bumped to the wing.

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#88 Chris
April 07 2009, 02:00PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

That will be determined in training camp

TOOO SHORT A TIME!!!!! GAWD! Is there a total committment accross all fandom AND management alike to circumvent proper asset management/ development? Are we so down on ourselves we look to a 5'9" CHILD to lead us back to glory? CAMP IS TOO SHORT! CAMP IS TOO SHORT! CAMP IS TOO SHORT! Are the Oilers such a crappy squad we give out top six roster spots in just a few short weeks? AAAGGUUHHGGG!!! Maybe we should just hold city wide open try-outs!

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#89 Rick
April 07 2009, 02:08PM
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Chris wrote:

TOOO SHORT A TIME!!!!! GAWD! Is there a total committment accross all fandom AND management alike to circumvent proper asset management/ development? Are we so down on ourselves we look to a 5′9″ CHILD to lead us back to glory? CAMP IS TOO SHORT! CAMP IS TOO SHORT! CAMP IS TOO SHORT! Are the Oilers such a crappy squad we give out top six roster spots in just a few short weeks? AAAGGUUHHGGG!!! Maybe we should just hold city wide open try-outs!

Look at what the Oilers have done in past years.

They look at a guy in camp, play him in the pre-season and then if the answer isn't clear they keep him on the roster but as a 13th/14th forward until the answer is presented during practices and the odd game.

It's not like this is unprecedented with the Oilers. Mihknov, Thoreson, Hejda and so on. Even some north american guys like Pouliot were brought along that way.

Jonathan is right, what ever they decide with this guy it's not that complicated. Get him to camp, evaluate him and go from there.

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#90 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 02:09PM
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@ Chris: Where do I sign up?

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#91 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 02:11PM
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Chris wrote:

Ogden Brother wrote: Honestly, how many teams work like that? If guys are NHL ready (and Cogs obviously is) they are in the NHL. Detroit.

Exactly, so one team.

In fact the team has tried the "slow approach" with Schremp and fans have been shitting on them for years over it.

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#92 Chris
April 07 2009, 02:13PM
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First step...You fill the AHL team with NHL ready prospects. You build confidence and a winning culture. They drive each other through internal competition to excellence.

You award first contracts to players who are truly ready to contribute CONSISTANTLY at the NHL level (ie Bobby Ryan). This is how an NHL franchise joins the ranks of the elite... by having good young players who can score 50+ points under their FIRST contract. You use the cap savings to compliament the roster with UFA's who want to be part of a group that legitamately contends for the cup (ie Hossa).

Untill Oilers management is committed to doing things the right way, from the ground up... things will never, ever, change. You do NOT award roster spotrs to 22 year prospects from Europe simply because they had a good camp!

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#93 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 02:13PM
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Chris wrote:

Looking through to next year… there is a very real possibility that Cogliano will have to be moved… Terrible! And why? Because the Oilers need experience at center; and Coglino is no longer eligible to be moved up and down… So we may lose another Oiler with a great future simply because Oilers management rushed him into NHL service too soon… So Lowe, in desperate to rapidly improve the Club, has traided our youth, and cashed in all our good young prospects prematurely… leaving us no depth and a bleak future… and the Oilers missed the playoffs three times in a row anyway! (Is anyone sensing my frustration?)

Oh brother, if they are "forced" to move them, they will still recieve a decent return.

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#94 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 02:33PM
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Chris wrote:

First step…You fill the AHL team with NHL ready prospects. You build confidence and a winning culture. They drive each other through internal competition to excellence. You award first contracts to players who are truly ready to contribute CONSISTANTLY at the NHL level (ie Bobby Ryan). This is how an NHL franchise joins the ranks of the elite… by having good young players who can score 50+ points under their FIRST contract. You use the cap savings to compliament the roster with UFA’s who want to be part of a group that legitamately contends for the cup (ie Hossa). Untill Oilers management is committed to doing things the right way, from the ground up… things will never, ever, change. You do NOT award roster spotrs to 22 year prospects from Europe simply because they had a good camp!

Sounds like fiction not reality. Sorry to say.

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#95 Chris
April 07 2009, 02:35PM
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@ Ogden Brother: Or the Oilers could have spent the last three seasons rebuilding properly... And a savey, confident AHL champion Cogliano would be joining a balanced hard working Cap-efficient Oiler squad for the first time: Ready to have a breakout year...(years and years before hitting RFA status)... Oh what could have been!

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#96 Chris
April 07 2009, 02:38PM
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Chris wrote:

@ Ogden Brother: Or the Oilers could have spent the last three seasons rebuilding properly… And a savey, confident AHL champion Cogliano would be joining a balanced hard working Cap-efficient Oiler squad for the first time: Ready to have a breakout year…(years and years before hitting RFA status)… Oh what could have been!

@ topshelf FMNF:

How's THAT for fiction?

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#97 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 02:44PM
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topshelf FMNF wrote:

Chris wrote: First step…You fill the AHL team with NHL ready prospects. You build confidence and a winning culture. They drive each other through internal competition to excellence. You award first contracts to players who are truly ready to contribute CONSISTANTLY at the NHL level (ie Bobby Ryan). This is how an NHL franchise joins the ranks of the elite… by having good young players who can score 50+ points under their FIRST contract. You use the cap savings to compliament the roster with UFA’s who want to be part of a group that legitamately contends for the cup (ie Hossa). Untill Oilers management is committed to doing things the right way, from the ground up… things will never, ever, change. You do NOT award roster spotrs to 22 year prospects from Europe simply because they had a good camp! Sounds like fiction not reality. Sorry to say.

Bingo

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#98 Ogden Brother
April 07 2009, 02:48PM
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Chris wrote:

@ Ogden Brother: Or the Oilers could have spent the last three seasons rebuilding properly… And a savey, confident AHL champion Cogliano would be joining a balanced hard working Cap-efficient Oiler squad for the first time: Ready to have a breakout year…(years and years before hitting RFA status)… Oh what could have been!

Now that I agree with, in hindsight the team should have forgotten about Souray and Penner, took their lumps last year and added Filitov/Bogosian/Scheen (or whomever) with their top 7 draft pick... same story this year as well.

That said, if the team finished in the bottom 7 last year with a 40 million payroll, all the whining from the fans would have been about how the team still refuses to spend, how nothings changed and how we'd be a top 4 team if only they'd spend the money.

Really, from a public relations perspective, the team was screwed either way. I for one applaud them for at least trying.

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#99 topshelf FMNF
April 07 2009, 02:53PM
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Chris wrote:

Or the Oilers could have spent the last three seasons rebuilding properly… And a savey, confident AHL champion Cogliano would be joining a balanced hard working Cap-efficient Oiler squad for the first time: Ready to have a breakout year…(years and years before hitting RFA status)… Oh what could have been!

That means the Oilers would have to suck, and I mean like Tampa Bay suck for the short term in order to stock pile high draft picks who would in turn, make the AHL franchise successful like you say. Are you, or all the fans for that matter, willing to put up with losing for the next 5 years because that's how long it will take.

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#100 offside
April 07 2009, 03:09PM
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Out of all of the Oilers prospects, who gets a spot next year? I don't see any making an impact next year. I hope someone can step in but I'm not putting my hopes on Eberle or Omark. It would be nice to see both of them succeed but I think the AHL would be a good place for both of them to start.

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