Denis Grebeshkov and the Defense

Jonathan Willis
May 28 2009 10:21AM

Grebeshkov celebrates

The Edmonton Journal is reporting today that Denis Grebeshkov is likely to return to the Oilers and is close to signing a three-year deal worth a shade over 3-million dollars a season.

This is excellent news, as the 25-year old emerged as a legitimate top-four defenseman last season, recording 39 points and leading the Oilers with a +12 rating. The dollars are around what I expected to see; a little higher than I’d hoped but reasonable, and the term is encouraging as well. There’s some worry here about sustainability, since Grebeshkov is being paid based on one excellent campaign (he improved his two-way play to end 2007-08 but it’s his offense that’s bringing in the money) and he wasn’t exactly called upon as the team’s premiere shut-down defenseman.

Grebeshkov also benefitted from an above-average on-ice shooting percentage (20% better than team average at even-strength). I don’t think that will continue, so his offense may dip a bit next season, but he should still be good for 30 or so points, and may maintain his current offensive pace if he gets more powerplay time.

Also in today’s Edmonton Journal, John MacKinnon suggests some changes to the Oilers’ blueline:

On the back end, Denis Grebeshkov, Tom Gilbert, Lubomir Visnovsky, and young Taylor Chorney are similar players. A careful cull is required here, too. So is acquring a genuine, banging, stay-at-home defenceman or two, preferably, to help out Ladislav Smid and one of, but not both, Steve Staios and Jason Strudwick.

I notice that Sheldon Souray, who just had (rather improbably) the finest season of his career at the age of 32, was not mentioned on that list. Souray was the subject of trade rumours at points after the season (pointed out by OilersNation’s own Robin Brownlee, if I’m not mistaken) and while he denied them, he has voiced public displeasure at various points druing the season. The San Jose Sharks, who supposedly pursued him as a free agent two summers ago, would be one team that might be a good fit for the hard-nosed defenseman.

Despite his (rather dominant) season and the new coaching tandem, I don’t think Souray should be perceived as untouchable. He’s a big-money, long-term contract on an Oilers team filled with them, and on top of that there should be some real questions about whether a repeat performance of this past year will happen.

Both Steve Staios and Jason Strudwick had somewhat disappointing seasons; they were sheltered on the third pairing and given a ton of offensive zone draws, but still were outscored and outshot at an alarming rate. Neither is a strength right now, and Staios in particular is a concern because of the length and and cap hit of his contract. Strudwick was repeatedly praised for his work ethic, physical game, and character but on a good team probably isn’t higher than #7 on the depth chart.

Tom Gilbert’s name is frequently mentioned in trade rumours, and he’s a player that gets criticized for playing a soft game. It’s worth noting that while he isn’t a big hitter, especially for his size, he did block 136 shots this season, good for second on the team and roughly twice as many as Sheldon Souray, who played similar ice-time; and this despite the fact that Souray waso n the ice for more shots against. I think it would be wrong to ignore that when discussing Gilbert’s willingness to pay a physical price.

As a G.M., I’d probably look at moving one of Gilbert or Souray for help up front, and I’d try to move Staios. I wouldn’t be against retaining Strudwick if he comes cheap (in the #7 role). Visnovsky, is in my opinion the best defenseman on the team, and Denis Grebeshkov brings good value for his contract (assuming those numbers are correct), so they’d both stay, as would young Ladislav Smid. That ideally leaves two spots, which I would try to fill via trade or free agency with a physical second-paring defenseman and a reliable third-pairing type (perhaps Daniel Tjarnqvist or Matt Walker, although there are plenty of options out there). That should save some much needed cap space while allowing prospects like Theo Peckham and Taylor Chorney to learn the game more fully in the AHL – there’s no need to rush these guys into the lineup; the odds are good that they’ll play when injuries strike anyway. Chorney in particular is not ready for the NHL game.

That’s my personal feeling, based on a few premises that I think are reasonable:

  • Veteran players are more dependable than prospects
  • Prospects with significant time invested in them (Smid) should not be lightly discarded
  • Players having career-best seasons in their mid-thirties should be regarded with some caution
  • Cap space should be saved wherever possible

Thoughts?

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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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#151 The Menace
May 28 2009, 05:33PM
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@ RossCreek: I guess what I mean is that in a practical sense, he doesn't address any issues. It doesn't do any good to solve one problem, but create several others.

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#152 Jonathan Willis
May 28 2009, 05:33PM
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scorcoff hemmercules wrote:

You come accross like you think Souray can’t possibly repeat his play next season, at least to me.

I'm sorry I come across that way. I think it's possible that he can, but I wouldn't give him great odds. There aren't a lot of players who finally put everything together like that at age 32. Most end up doing what Dave Lowry did in Calgary; bouncing up than bouncing down. I'd expect either a 35 point season with decent +/- or a 50+ point season with poor +/-. Or injury.

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#153 Jonathan Willis
May 28 2009, 05:37PM
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scorcoff hemmercules wrote:

I haven’t heard the name Gilbert Brule in a while, what’s his story, keep him or ditch him? Does he have a shot at cracking the lineup any time soon??

That is an interesting question... I'd guess that he gets used, at least on the fourth line, by Quinn.

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#154 Ogden Brother
May 28 2009, 05:50PM
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The Menace wrote:

@ RossCreek: I guess what I mean is that in a practical sense, he doesn’t address any issues. It doesn’t do any good to solve one problem, but create several others.

What? Swapping Souray for front line scoring and replacing Souray with komi (not that I think he's coming) would be exactly what the team needs... 4 offensive dmen... all with average or worse defense isn't ideal, 3 offensive dmen would be plenty.

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#155 Ogden Brother
May 28 2009, 05:52PM
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Chris wrote:

@ Ogden Brother: It is true that many teams are up against the cap: but most teams are getting more value for those dollars. Your assertion that elite player on thier own “win you squat” is just a glib way of detracting from the Oiler salary cap woes… Facts are: a) The Oilers don’t have any elite players. b) The Oilers haven’t won squat. AND c) Oilers management lacks the cap room to change either a or b.

Like I said a couple blogs ago, it's the 22 man roster of Whashington/Boston etc that made them good, not the 13/14 they still have under contract.

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#156 Don Murdochs Hair
May 28 2009, 06:29PM
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RossCreek wrote:

Haven’t heard anyone mention this, but if the Oil are looking for a big defensive top 4 d man, and if they are to move one of their current top 4, and with the vancouver connection, WHAT ABOUT MATTIAS OHLUND?

Good God man not Ohlund.

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#157 Harlie
May 28 2009, 07:11PM
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with the Vancity - TO connection all of a sudden I can picture Sundin or Naslund wearing Oiler silks..

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#158 Jonathan Willis
May 28 2009, 07:14PM
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@ Harlie:

Although I'm fairly sure Naslund just retired.

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#159 Librarian Mike
May 28 2009, 07:56PM
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Harlie wrote:

with the Vancity - TO connection all of a sudden I can picture Sundin or Naslund wearing Oiler silks..

Sundin? Hahaha. Talk about a horrifying idea.

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#160 Harlie
May 28 2009, 08:05PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

@ Harlie: Although I’m fairly sure Naslund just retired.

I hope Sundin follows in his footsteps

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#161 Jason Gregor
May 28 2009, 08:07PM
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Chris wrote:

@ Jason Gregor: Didn’t someone on your show yesterday say that Komisarek was looking for around 6 million a season?

Rob Martier from CJAD in Montreal was talking about a report out of Russia that stated the Habs were offering Kovalev a one-year deal worth $6- 7.5 million and the captaincy.

It also said the Habs had offered Komisarek $4 million a year and he turned it down saying he wants $6 million.

RossCreek wrote:

@ Chris I never heard Jason’s show but I wouldn’t doubt it. He gets 5-5.5 easy.

Komisarek is a one-dimensional stay-at-home D-man. If any one gives him more than $4 million they are on glue. Is Komisarek better than Regehr? Nope. And Regehr makes $4.02 million, so why is Komisarek worth $5 or more? No chance.

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#162 Harlie
May 28 2009, 08:08PM
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any rumblings out there for Messier to join the Oil on bench this year? Or in any other capacity?

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#163 Jason Gregor
May 28 2009, 08:09PM
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Ogden Brother wrote:

Chris wrote: @ Ogden Brother: It is true that many teams are up against the cap: but most teams are getting more value for those dollars. Your assertion that elite player on thier own “win you squat” is just a glib way of detracting from the Oiler salary cap woes… Facts are: a) The Oilers don’t have any elite players. b) The Oilers haven’t won squat. AND c) Oilers management lacks the cap room to change either a or b. Like I said a couple blogs ago, it’s the 22 man roster of Whashington/Boston etc that made them good, not the 13/14 they still have under contract.

Yeah and that ONE guy who had 21 points in two rounds didn't do much. Your argument that having studs and no support is weak. The Oilers don't have the MONEY to get an elite player, and trust me they aren't going anywhere without one. Like it or not, the HUMAN RAKE was the main reason they went to the Cup. The others were very necessary of course, but without the stud the others can't follow.

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#164 J.L.
May 28 2009, 08:17PM
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You need at least one elite player and a good supporting lineup to contend for the Stanley Cup. A team of mediocre players isn't going to do it, and neither is one Ilya Kovalchuk on the Atlanta Thrashers.

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#165 Dan
May 28 2009, 08:31PM
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@ Jason Gregor:

Komisarek sounds like one disgruntled employee. I don't even think that he thinks he'll get 6 mil/year. I think its just tactics for him to get out of Montreal.

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#166 DonDon
May 28 2009, 08:47PM
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John MacKinnon's analysis is right on. As great as Brownlee believes Quinn will be as an el supremo coach, without the horses the Oil will be a horseXXXX team. As for Hemsky, supposedly the Oilers' best player, he certainly hasn't played like the best player. If the Oil had signed Hossa, for lack of support up front, he certainly wouldn't have performed like he has for the Wings. MacKinnon believes the Oil requires major surgery and that current assets like Hemsky, Souray and Gilbert are not untouchables when it comes to trade time. The talk about skilled players on the Oilers' roster is only talk; most of the supposedly skilled forwards are mediocre by NHL standards. The real interesting part of the off-season for the Oilers is just beginning; it is the replenishment of an ill-conceived roster of mediocre players with real NHL players that can legitimately compete for a playoff position. Tambellini hasn't earned his salary yet.

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#167 Ogden Brother
May 28 2009, 08:54PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Ogden Brother wrote: Chris wrote: @ Ogden Brother: It is true that many teams are up against the cap: but most teams are getting more value for those dollars. Your assertion that elite player on thier own “win you squat” is just a glib way of detracting from the Oiler salary cap woes… Facts are: a) The Oilers don’t have any elite players. b) The Oilers haven’t won squat. AND c) Oilers management lacks the cap room to change either a or b. Like I said a couple blogs ago, it’s the 22 man roster of Whashington/Boston etc that made them good, not the 13/14 they still have under contract. Yeah and that ONE guy who had 21 points in two rounds didn’t do much. Your argument that having studs and no support is weak. The Oilers don’t have the MONEY to get an elite player, and trust me they aren’t going anywhere without one. Like it or not, the HUMAN RAKE was the main reason they went to the Cup. The others were very necessary of course, but without the stud the others can’t follow.

How on earth is it weak? AO has been a stud since day one, he now finally has a supporting cast and now he's making progress.

The Pens were in what? 10th place 55 games in? They had 2 of the 3 best players in the world, but little depth. They add Kunitz/Guerin and get Gonchar back and they go on a tare. Ottawa has three allstars and little depth. They were one of the worst teams in the league over the last 120ish games.

Of course you need top end player(s) to make noise in NHL, but you also need the depth.

As for the Oilers, and their lack of elite players. Do we really think it's $$ that's keeping them from landing one? Come on now, we should know by now that few elite players ever even make it to FA status... and of the few that do, they basically have their pick of the liter. The only way the Oilers land a top 10ish player is to draft one, or to have a guy like Kovalchuk hold Atlanta hostage and hope you can out bid the competition.

Barring an abolute miricle this team isn't winning the Cup for at least 2-4 years,regardless of how much cap space it has. However we can certainly move up as a solid playoff team in that 5/6 spot as early as next year.

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#168 Chris
May 28 2009, 09:14PM
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Ogden Brother wrote:

The Pens were in what? 10th place 55 games in? They had 2 of the 3 best players in the world, but little depth. They add Kunitz/Guerin and get Gonchar back and they go on a tare

The Pens are in the Stanley Cup Final; and not because of Guerin. Signing complementary players is the easy part... (Especially if you can play with a guy like Crosby)

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#169 DonDon
May 28 2009, 09:19PM
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@ DBO: Forget O'Sullivan (too small, too soft), Moreau (well past his prime), Brodziak (too soft) and Staois (past his prime and too expensive). Not sure of Pisani. Trade Gilbert and possibly Souray. Need to get bigger, tougher and and have puck-control abilities.

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#170 Chris
May 28 2009, 09:40PM
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@ DonDon:

The defence is the one strongish suit of the Oilers; I'd be hesitant to turn over three of the starting six.

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#171 Chris
May 28 2009, 09:43PM
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Ogden Brother wrote:

Come on now, we should know by now that few elite players ever even make it to FA status… and of the few that do, they basically have their pick of the liter. The only way the Oilers land a top 10ish player is to draft one

On this point... I 100% agree.

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#172 Ogden Brother
May 28 2009, 10:20PM
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Chris wrote:

Ogden Brother wrote: The Pens were in what? 10th place 55 games in? They had 2 of the 3 best players in the world, but little depth. They add Kunitz/Guerin and get Gonchar back and they go on a tare The Pens are in the Stanley Cup Final; and not because of Guerin. Signing complementary players is the easy part… (Especially if you can play with a guy like Crosby)

It's coincidence they went on a tare when they finally added some capable top 6 wingers? They were middle of the pack (5-7 range)last year until they added Hossa as well.

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#173 Ogden Brother
May 28 2009, 10:35PM
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Chris wrote:

Ogden Brother wrote: Come on now, we should know by now that few elite players ever even make it to FA status… and of the few that do, they basically have their pick of the liter. The only way the Oilers land a top 10ish player is to draft one On this point… I 100% agree.

Just for reference, when I brought up the "kovalchuk type guy holding his team hostage" I meant forcing them to trade him, not through UFA.

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#174 Robin Brownlee
May 28 2009, 10:49PM
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DonDon wrote:

John MacKinnon’s analysis is right on. As great as Brownlee believes Quinn will be as an el supremo coach, without the horses the Oil will be a horseXXXX team.

Is what MacKinnon wrote some sort of revelation to you? He's several days (weeks) late and several dollars short on what he wrote, save for the mind-boggling Hemsky twist. The rest has been written by me and others here countless times before. Nobody with half-a-brain thinks ANY new coach is going to come in here and turn the roster as it stands into a Cup contender. Changes start with taking one of the top four defencemen and trading for a top six forward. Others needs have also been pointed out countless times.

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#175 Shaun
May 28 2009, 11:01PM
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Ummm, you DO NOT move Souray, ok? thanks

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#176 Alan
May 28 2009, 11:34PM
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DonDon wrote:

MacKinnon believes the Oil requires major surgery and that current assets like Hemsky, Souray and Gilbert are not untouchables when it comes to trade time. The talk about skilled players on the Oilers’ roster is only talk; most of the supposedly skilled forwards are mediocre by NHL standards.

Who cares what MacKinnon thinks. His stuff his unreadable most of the time. Sorry, using him as your back up because you hate Brownlee is laughable.

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#177 Archaeologuy
May 28 2009, 11:59PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

He’s several days (weeks) late and several dollars short on what he wrote, save for the mind-boggling Hemsky twist.

That bit about Hemsky WAS mind-bottling. He twisted what Hemsky said about being handcuffed by the coach into making it sound like he was complaining that he had to spend time in the defensive zone or something. Then he goes on to say that Hemsky should be traded for some defensive forward. Maybe he's just bitter that no one in their right mind liked his trade proposal of Hemsky for a bag of pucks...er...Brown.

As far as Souray goes, I was (and still am) ready to strip the C from Moreau and give it to Souray. What does it hurt, except the pride of a 3rd line replaceable forward who takes bad penalties late in games? If he gets traded the Oilers dont have ANY physical D-men that play around 20 or more minutes a game.

I know Willis stands up for the Moreau's and the Pisani's of the world, but I dont. the 3rd line should be an after thought based on what this team needs to address. 1 faceoff guy is what the PK desperately needed. Neither of those guys take draws. Their ability to move their sticks in and out of passing lanes can be picked up by some other players with functioning brains. Every other team manages to have a PK and a 3rd line without Pisani and Moreau, so the Oil can do it too.

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#178 DonDon
May 29 2009, 12:31AM
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@ Alan: Don't even know Brownlee personally or care so how could I hate him? I don't know MacKinnon personally either, but have more regard for his opinion. At the least, MacKinnon is a regular sports columnist for the Journal. From your remarks, you apparently know and hate MacKinnon, so who's opinion is laughable? Let's be respectful here, my opinion is as good as yours. I think MacKinnon's analysis is right on and many others that follow the Oil will probably agree. As wonderful as Brownlee thinks Quinn will be as the new head coach, without the necessary talent to compete, the Oilers will continue to be relegated to 10th or 11th place in the Western Conference and miss the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season. The big question now is can Tambellini be a miracle worker and return the Oil to respectability through major surgery of player personnel within the franchise.

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#179 RossCreek
May 29 2009, 06:37AM
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@ GREGOR As for Komisarek, I'm not saying he's necessarily worth 5+, but on the open market, its likely he gets more than Regher whether he's better or not, no? If Robyn were on the open market, he'd get more than 4.02. Just like Iggy would or Thornton would or Zetterberg would. Guys who stay because they want to sign for less than market value. If Komisarek signs for 4 ish, I'd be shocked . IMO, his age and abilities make him one of the top free agent defensemen out there, and he'll benefit from a bidding war. Still think he gets 5 easy (maybe his hometown Islanders give him 5+)

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#180 alphah.
May 29 2009, 07:36AM
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Interesting that someone mentioned Brule earlier in here. The info on him has been fairly sparse all year, I know he had to deal with injury and a suspension... Can I make a request here?? I think somebody? (Jon? ;) should do a write up on his season, see if we can dig anything up. Was he on the pipeline show any time in the last few months? I'd like to know how he feels this year went, and the reason his year went the way it did.

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#181 Hemmertime
May 29 2009, 07:42AM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

I know Willis stands up for the Moreau’s and the Pisani’s of the world, but I dont. the 3rd line should be an after thought based on what this team needs to address

Caring about your 3rd and 4th lines is the Difference Between Detroit and Ottawa

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#182 Librarian Mike
May 29 2009, 07:52AM
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@ Hemmertime:

Perhaps, but I suspect Arch's point is that while grinders are necessary it's important to not overvalue them. There's no substitute for talent.

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#183 Hemmertime
May 29 2009, 07:57AM
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Ya I read it wrong, my bad. Seems he meant just priorities I think, like screw the third line "for now" and hope Lowe doesn't work on it with MacT like vigor.

If he did mean teams should think of third line as afterthought though I stand by my disagreement =)

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#184 scorcoff hemmercules
May 29 2009, 08:27AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

scorcoff hemmercules wrote: You come accross like you think Souray can’t possibly repeat his play next season, at least to me. I’m sorry I come across that way. I think it’s possible that he can, but I wouldn’t give him great odds. There aren’t a lot of players who finally put everything together like that at age 32. Most end up doing what Dave Lowry did in Calgary; bouncing up than bouncing down. I’d expect either a 35 point season with decent +/- or a 50+ point season with poor +/-. Or injury.

Haha, don't be sorry, everyone is entitled to think the way they want. I just think that if our team is trying to get grittier/tougher and we apparently need to move either Souray or Lubo for money reasons, Lubo is the guy to trade. Lubo is just as likely to get hurt as Souray is and both make around the same money. I don't see why Souray can't have just as good of a two way game next season as he did this one. I'm really trying to have no expectations for next year though, Mact and his division title talk had me thinking big, I won't be fooled again.

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#185 David S
May 29 2009, 08:29AM
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DonDon wrote:

As wonderful as Brownlee thinks Quinn will be as the new head coach, without the necessary talent to compete, the Oilers will continue to be relegated to 10th or 11th place in the Western Conference and miss the playoffs for the fifth consecutive season.

(a) You just figured this out now? (b) Brownlee is one of the most respected sports writer in this town, surely ahead of Mackinnon on a bad day, and the dude has been on the beat forever. Did you notice who the first media questions came from the day of Quinn's PC? Gregor and Brownlee.

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#186 Archaeologuy
May 29 2009, 09:21AM
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@ Hemmertime: No, i meant as a priority for this season. But even the 3rd line as a whole, the key to that line will be the Centre. Id rather have a 3rd line with 1 good defensive centre than 2 ok wingers. Defense can be taught. Apparently, faceoffs cant. That's why i contend that guys like Moreau and Pisani are more easily replaceable than Willis does.

But you are right. The depth (and goalie, and coach) is what seperates Ottawa from Detroit. I would still bet that Ottawa has an easier time bouncing back to playoff contention than the Oilers.

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#187 The Menace
May 29 2009, 10:06AM
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Shaun wrote:

Ummm, you DO NOT move Souray, ok? thanks

Relax - no one here has the power to make trades yet. :)

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#188 Chris
May 29 2009, 10:15AM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

Maybe he’s just bitter that no one in their right mind liked his trade proposal of Hemsky for a bag of pucks…er…Brown

Comparing Dustin Brown to a bag of pucks is ridiculous; and if you are even half serious, it shows a high level of ignorence regarding player evaluation.

I find it funny that you are unable to see that it is Lomabardi who would most likely be the guy to shy away from any Hemsky for Brown deal.

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#189 Archaeologuy
May 29 2009, 10:21AM
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@ Chris: I cant imagine why the Oilers would be more willing to trade a point a game player for a second line forward who is a massive defensive liability than vice versa. But I'M the one who's ignorant of player values. Okee-Dokee.

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#190 Chris
May 29 2009, 10:33AM
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@ Archaeologuy:

There is a lot more to a player than pure point production; besides didn't Brown score more goals than Hemsky last year, AND wear the C, AND devestate the opposition with big hits, AND show a willingness/ability to either lead the rush OR effectively cycle the puck down low? Make no mistake... If Lomabardi traded his young captain/power forward for an enigmatic one-dimensional player like Hemsky; he would have some explaining to do with the fans in L.A. Brown will probably never out-produce Hemsky. That said, IMO, if the Oilers would be a better team if they made that trade.

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#191 Chris
May 29 2009, 10:43AM
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@ Archaeologuy:

Just to further beat a dead horse; based just on skill and point production: a young Petr Klima compared nicely to Mark Messier.

Dustin Brown is not Messier. Hemsky is not Klima. Don't waste your time pucnching holes in the comparison. The point I'm making is that there is much much more to player evaluation than analysing point totals and assessing skill with the puck.

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#192 Archaeologuy
May 29 2009, 01:08PM
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@ Chris: Thats your opinion. I disagree, we both know that. Dustin Brown is a Captain, so was Shayne Corson. Big Deal. He led his team directly to the basement of the Western conference. He made so many big hits and left his man open so much that his +/- was near the bottom of his team. ~thats exactly what the Oilers need.~ Someone who scores less AND has less defensive reliability than Hemsky. That should take our first line right over the top.

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#193 Chris
May 29 2009, 03:42PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

Someone who scores less AND has less defensive reliability than Hemsky.

Dustin Brown scores more. Dustin Brown has 89 goals through his first four seasons. Ales Hemsky had 59 goals through his first four seasons. As for Hemsky's "defensive reliability"; Do you even watch him play? I think you've spend so much time blaming Horcoff for holding Hemsky back offensively, that you've never noticed that Horcoff carries Hemsky on his back defensively. IF Hemsky actually was "defensively reliable" maybe MacT could have played Gagner with him. Watch closely: Hemsky rarely back-checks, never hits, and only blocks shots by accident. It's up to evrybody else to get him the puck... C'mon Hemsky's "defensive reliability!"... LOL!

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#194 Archaeologuy
May 29 2009, 03:56PM
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@ Chris: I watch the same player you do. I didnt say he was a defensive genius. I said that Brown is even less capable defensively than him.

Brown: 5 seasons 192 points Hemsky: 6 seasons 331 points

Ok, I guess if Brown has a 139 point season next year he can catch up.

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#195 Chris
May 29 2009, 04:58PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

I said that Brown is even less capable defensively than him.

Based on what? Plus minus? Situational play? Personal observation? This is a bold statement... and inaccurate.

You keep missing the central point of all my arguments: Chris wrote:

The point I’m making is that there is much much more to player evaluation than analysing point totals and assessing skill with the puck.

Instead of arguing this point, and it's central premise you say: Archaeologuy wrote:

Ok, I guess if Brown has a 139 point season next year he can catch up

There is more to player evaluation than POINT TOTALS! Based solely on point totals someone could have argued Petr Klima was a STAR!

We are spinning our wheels... you are so blinded by the Hemsky's ALMOST PPG status that you refuse to see any merit in almost any reasonable trade proposal. I guess we will continue to completely disagree about Hemmers value.

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#196 Archaeologuy
May 30 2009, 01:25AM
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Reasonable trade proposals are one thing, too bad that trade wasnt reasonable in the least.

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#197 TV
May 30 2009, 12:26PM
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@ Archaeologuy:

So you are stating that Dustin Brown is a inferior defensive player than #83..?

Wow... Talk about flushing your ON cred right down the crapper with 1 bold comment.

"Bag Of Pucks"

"Massive Defensive Liability"

Did you forget the "~" or are you just being pedantic..?

Someone needs to get off the couch & stop watching the puck only...

x6

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#198 Chris
May 30 2009, 12:36PM
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I don't think you understand how trading works. In the Brown for Hemsky scenario the Oilers would be losing some high end playmaking ability for size, grit, and leadership. It's a tradeoff. The Oilers youth, in particular, are soft, soft, soft, and Brown would inject much needed size and toughness into that demographic. IMO the young Oiler aren't short on skill/playmaking ability anyway; so Brown could meet a need without unbalancing the roster too far the other way. (Besides Brown scores as many GOALS as Hemsky anyways)

Trading is about give and take. Hemsky will never, ever be able to fetch a player with the same overall skill level AND size, leadership, etc. That is a fact. Both managers need to feel that they improved their roster in any type of "hockey" trade. If you don't like this particular proposal; fine. IMO Brown could really help this roster even if he isn't as "skilled" as Hemsky. Besides, Lombardi would never make that trade anyway...

Just an obsevation from reading some of your earlier stuff; you seem to immediately reject any trade proposal that involves Hemsky without taking the time to consider the overall roster implications. If the Oilers are going to improve overall, Tambellini will have to trade either Cogliano, Gagner, or Hemsky for a good young player along the lines of a Dustin Brown. It takes quality to fetch quality; and besides there can only be so much quality ice time allocated to the same types of player.

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#199 Chris
May 30 2009, 12:38PM
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@ Archaeologuy: The previous post was for you. I should learn how to edit.

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#200 Archaeologuy
May 30 2009, 02:28PM
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TV wrote:

So you are stating that Dustin Brown is a inferior defensive player than #83..? Wow… Talk about flushing your ON cred right down the crapper with 1 bold comment.

Its not very bold to suggest that a career -59 player who has never had a better +/- rating in a full season than Hemsky's worst +/- rating is not as good defensively as Hemsky. Really its not that hard to say that at all considering he has been near the bottom of his own team in that category since he started playing full seasons.

Now that I know that you are the judge of who has ON credit I can start to gain it back by saying ridiculous things like Brown is a better player than Hemsky and that he will fix the top line of the Oilers, and that his crazy terrible 5 on 5 defensive play would add so much to this team the Oilers would not only make the playoffs but they would win the stanley cup with 16 straight victories.

Chris wrote:

I don’t think you understand how trading works.

Because its SOOOOOO hard to understand, although I guess Mike Milbury never figured it out.

Chris wrote:

in the Brown for Hemsky scenario the Oilers would be losing some high end playmaking ability for size, grit, and leadership. It’s a tradeoff.

Because the 1st line needs less scoring and more big hits? The oilers dont need a forward who goes to the hard areas of the ice and creates offense, they need a player who goes to the hard areas of the ice and forgets his defensive responsibilities so consistently that he leads his team in - rating over the last 4 years? Awesome. How bout that leadership? It was so good that the Kings have finished in the basement every year that he's been on the team. wicked great leadership. And Hemsky's consistent efforts dont provide one lick of leadership on the team? Come on.

I understand there's give and take with any trade. But in this trade the Oilers lose a much more difficult asset to acquire than they receive. They lose one of the best contract performers in the league for Dustin Penner with grit and passion, except Dustin Penner gives up less 5 on 5.

Chris wrote:

you seem to immediately reject any trade proposal that involves Hemsky without taking the time to consider the overall roster implications

Pot-Kettle-Black. I have given a hundred reasons for knocking down any of these trade proposals. I actually try to make an argument. that's why these back and forths go on forever. The roster implications would be huge after that trade. The Oilers would instantly lose 20 ish points from the first line and would have nobody capable of producing a point a game. They would lose the only marquee forward on the team, instantly making this place even less attractive to other UFA forwards looking to play with other good players. In return they would gain a 50 point player who hits a lot. The team would also lose the most important cog on their already dismal PP, making it likely the absolute worst in the league. But Brown can likely score 20-25 goals...as long as he's playing with Kopitar and Frolov.

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