A Bad Day/Where Do We Go From Here?

Jonathan Willis
July 01 2009 11:03PM

khabi

I’ve been a fan of Steve Tambellini for a while now, and he’s passed a few tests well (trade deadline, the draft), but the last 48 hours have not been the highlight of his time as Edmonton’s general manager. Let’s take a look at his work today, starting with his best deal and finishing with Heatley.

The Khabibulin Acquisition

I wasn’t a fan of this move at first. I’m still not a fan, exactly, but I’m coming around to some degree. Let’s try and look at both sides of the signing.

Taking advantage of the situation: With a ton of capable goaltenders on the market (Khabibulin, Roloson, Biron, Anderson, Clemmensen, etc.) and precious few homes for them, Steve Tambellini stuck to his guns on only handing Dwayne Roloson a one-year contract. Roloson signed a two-year deal with the Islanders, and Craig Anderson signed a bargain contract with Colorado. With some options left, Tambellini promptly signed Khabibulin to a contract for more money and longer term. Was ensuring that the 39-year old Roloson only got one year really worth the extra ten million dollars and two years of term for the 36-year old Khabibulin?

Khabibulin’s track record: Yes, he has a Stanley Cup, and yes, he’s coming off a deep playoff run. Does anyone remember what happened last time he signed a contract after coming off a deep playoff run? He posted an .886 SV% in Chicago and did a lot to submarine the team’s hopes. His play has been so shoddy over the past three seasons that the Blackhawks finally bit the bullet and signed another ‘tender (Cristobal Huet) even though it meant lugging around two massive contracts in a salary cap era. Khabibulin has topped a .910 SV% just once in the last four years. Of the twenty goaltenders who have faced 5000 shots since 2005-06, he ranks 16th in save percentage — among those who ranked higher is Dwayne Roloson, at 12th.

Sharing the workload: Ryan Rishaug of TSN reports that the Oilers plan to have Jeff Deslauriers play 25-30 games next season so they can really see what they’ve got in him. I suppose the 147 games that the 25-year old has played in the AHL and NHL weren’t enough for them to get an accurate read; if they don’t know already then perhaps firing the goaltending coach a few days ago was a good move. Maybe they’ve seen something that the rest of us have missed, but what I see is a 25-year old with a middling AHL track record who has been jerked from team to team since turning pro.

The positives: Despite the first two rather damning points, there is some hope here. Gabriel Desjardins of behindthenet.ca has been doing work on shot quality and expected save percentage, based on the location of shots taken (from NHL game charts). Commenter Doogie on my other site was nice enough to point out Khabibulin’s even-strength numbers over the past two years to me:

  • Expected GAA and save percentage: 2.66 GAA, .899 SV%
  • Actual GAA and save percentage: 2.17 GAA, .918 SV%

That’s a stark contrast, and this will be a good test case. Was Chicago’s defense really that porous? If so, than Tambellini may have a quality keeper on his hands.

The final analysis: This wasn’t the best possible choice, and the term is a little frightening. All of that said, this isn’t an albatross contract either, and the goaltending should be adequate for the next few years.

The Chris Neil Offer

Looking up and down the roster, what do the Oilers need more than anything else? A fourth-line RW from a non-playoff team who provides a nasty physical edge and minimal upside in any other area of the game? I thought so. And, heck, why not make him a three year offer in the 2-million dollars a year range? It isn’t like the Oilers already have a similar player locked up for the next few years at one-third of the money.

Yet, the Oilers were reported by TSN as one of the final teams pushing hard to add Chris Neil to their roster.

Dany Heatley

This stuff honestly couldn’t get made up, it’s that weird. To recap:

  • 50-goal scorer Dany Heatley demands a trade from his team because he doesn’t get along with the new coach (under who the team finally started winning).
  • Despite demanding a trade, Heatley doesn’t waive his no-movement clause; he still demands the right to determine where he gets traded.
  • Edmonton puts together a package that Ottawa finds palatable, and Bryan Murray asks Heatley to waive his NMC to go to the Oilers. Heatley says (through his agent) that he wants to “sleep on it”.
  • At this point, we find out that neither the Oilers nor Senators have been interpreting his contract correctly — the $4 million signing bonus that Heatley is owed won’t be due until the next night. Heatley’s agent, meanwhile, knew this the entire time (I wonder if he wants to be an assistant GM — I can think of two teams that would probably be upgrading in that slot by hiring him).
  • The Oilers dream team flies out to meet with Heatley to persuade him to waive his NMC.

Heatley however, has decided not to waive his NMC to come to Edmonton, leaving Ottawa on the hook for four-million dollars. The reason though seems to have little to do with Edmonton – this from Dan Tencer’s Twitter feed:

Source: Meeting went OK with the Oilers. It's more about Heatley trying put the screws to Ottawa.

At this point, it’s anyone's guess as to what eventually will happen. Ottawa’s in a bad situation, and the Oilers might be able to take advantage of it. Than again, maybe Bryan Murray will return the favour and refuse to deal the winger — which takes us to our final question:

Where Do They Go From Here?

Let’s assume that the Oilers are still interested in a left-winger to play on their top line. If Heatley doesn’t work out, I imagine that Tambellini’s backup plans go something like this:

  • Plan B – Sign Marian Hossa.
  • Plan C – Sign Martin Havlat.
  • Plan D – Sign Marian Gaborik.
  • Plan E – Sign Mike Cammalleri.

Unfortunately, while the Oilers were busy chasing Heatley, the Blackhawks, Wild, Rangers, and Canadiens decided to sign virtually every high-scoring left-winger on the market. Alex Tanguay is probably the next best thing available via free agency, while it’s possible that Alex Frolov or Simon Gagne are available via trade.

Regardless, the Oilers still have some options, but a) they aren’t in the same class as the three top-end guys who signed today and b) it’s anyone’s guess if they’ll still be available when the Heatley saga finally comes to a conclusion one way or the other.

Making The Best of The Situation

All is not lost, though. Heatley may still accept a trade to Edmonton (for good or ill) and while Samuel Pahlsson and John Madden have both been taken off the market, free agent Manny Malhotra is still available and would be a good fit for the Oilers’ third line and penalty kill; he’s big, he’s strong, he can find the defensive zone without the aid of a map and multiple trail guides, and unlike virtually every other forward on the Oilers’ roster he can win a faceoff.

There’s still tomorrow.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
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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#101 Nick Dynasty
July 02 2009, 10:09AM
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If this deal is dead then our offer should only get worse because the Sens are clearly out of options on Heatley. Pull out Cogs and throw in Nilsson or Pouliot and/or Schremp.

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#102 Alon
July 02 2009, 10:10AM
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This could be good for the Oilers. Maybe we add MAP and some conditional picks to sweeten the pot. We might get to dump another contract

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#103 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 10:11AM
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I'm praying this Hatley nonsense gets resolved today, enough is enough. Make one more offer with a one day deadline and then get the hell out. We need to address some other positions before its too late, forget that princess in Ottawa after today.

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#104 ScubaSteve
July 02 2009, 10:12AM
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Nick Dynasty wrote:

If this deal is dead then our offer should only get worse because the Sens are clearly out of options on Heatley. Pull out Cogs and throw in Nilsson or Pouliot and/or Schremp.

I agree, I can't see how Heatley's value has now risen after all this. The only thing I could see is adding one of OTT bad contracts to help counteract the bonus payment, but since part of this deal is a salary dump, I don't see that happening

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#105 kingsblade
July 02 2009, 10:12AM
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RossCreek wrote:

I’m not positive, but as far as I know, the insurance company would actually pay the $ but the cap hit would remain on the books.

This is exactly correct. I can't see any other way to read the relevant CBA article.

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#106 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:13AM
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Nick Dynasty wrote:

If this deal is dead then our offer should only get worse because the Sens are clearly out of options on Heatley. Pull out Cogs and throw in Nilsson or Pouliot and/or Schremp.

#?%!WhaT? The deal is dead because the Sens want more! Offering them less is pointless. Offer more OR get out of the deal.

@ Robin Brownlee: Where do you stand? ;-)

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#107 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 10:14AM
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@ Alon: @ Nick Dynasty:

I think we should just ask Heatley WTF he wants to do before we start making up more packages, if finally says yes then make another offer. Why put more players through this if he just keeps denying us. This has been the biggest joke in my 20 years watching the NHL.

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#108 Chester Copperpot
July 02 2009, 10:14AM
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Am I the only one who's not ready to write this team's playoff chances off?

- Last year this was a team that was going to contend for the divison title.

- According to most fans last year's debacle was the coach's fault.

So they fired the coach and the young guys have a year's worth of experience. Shouldn't they do better? Sure the Oil still needs a 3rd line center, but that is still very doable.

I'm tired of fans demanding that management do something drastic in the offseason to improve the club. All that does is:

a) hurt Edmonton's reputation when big named UFA's don't sign.

or

b) hurt Edmonton's salary cap when they "win" and the UFA agrees to come to Edmonton on a big money long term contract.

Best case they make the playoffs and teh young guys get some experience.

Worst case we miss the playoffs (Edmonton gets a great draft pick and aren't in a cap bind come next summer.)

With or without Heatley this team isn't a cup contender, so why bother going for 'it'? Let's continue the slow (and painful) re-build.

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#109 The Towel Boy
July 02 2009, 10:14AM
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Yeah, I don't get why the Oilers would have/want to pay more to get Heatley now. I mean...it was an Ottawa bonus...Ottawa paid it. I don't think they have a legitimate reason to try and recoup that bonus via more players from EDM...other than the fact that it stings a bit.

I mean, I understand that they would LIKE to get their money back somehow...but I just don't see it happening.

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#110 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:15AM
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Alon wrote:

This could be good for the Oilers. Maybe we add MAP and some conditional picks to sweeten the pot. We might get to dump another contract

My guess is yhat the Oil would now have to take Jason Smith's contract back so Ottawa can recoup some of the $. Perhaps even a Pouliot for *insert another overpaid Sen*

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#111 Gerald R. Ford
July 02 2009, 10:15AM
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So, basically, they won't eat Penner's contract now, is that it? They'd want Cogs, Smid, and a pick or prospect? And, if the Oilers can't dump the contract, they can't clear cap space. And, if they can't clear cap space, they can't take Heatley's contract on in return. So, Heatley stalling past the deadline basically eliminates the Oilers as a destination, and subsequently eliminates the necessity for him to actually say he doesn't want to come here. Please correct me if I'm wrong, I'm just speculating. I've no idea if it's that simplistic. It's a brilliant tactic, if that's what it amounts to, though.

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#112 The Towel Boy
July 02 2009, 10:17AM
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So, does this Heatley bonus count against the cap hit? It must if we're talking more Sens' salaries having to come off the books. Right?

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#113 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:19AM
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Gerald R. Ford wrote:

So, basically, they won’t eat Penner’s contract now, is that it?

That could also be correct. Or O'Sullivan is 1.3 cheaper than Penner and Smith makes 2.6, so a Cogliano, O'Sullivan, Smid for Heatley & Smith deal could essentially evaporate 4mil.

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#114 Chester Copperpot
July 02 2009, 10:21AM
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@ Gerald R. Ford:

Or the deal could be:

To Edmonton - Heatley To Springfield via Edmonton - Smith ($2.6 contract) - Another 1.4 mil worth of underperforming player

To Ottawa - Penner - Cogliano - Smid

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#115 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:22AM
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The Towel Boy wrote:

So, does this Heatley bonus count against the cap hit? It must if we’re talking more Sens’ salaries having to come off the books. Right?

The bonus is a part of his salary for the 09-10 season. 4 mil upfront and 4 mil spread out over the season. So yes it counts against the cap.

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#116 DonDon
July 02 2009, 10:22AM
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Some of the posters may wish to read today's Ottawa Citizen on the Heatley story. Very interesting perspectives. On improving the club, the obvious has been stated over and over again. The Oil has to move a bunch of contracts to make any appreciable change to the roster this season and prepare for a much smaller cap in 2010-2011. There are some tradeable assets of real value, e.g., Souray, Gilbert and O'Sullivan that could get forwards that are bigger, grittier and harder to play against, and a first line centre. The problem is the Oil is paying $5.5M for a third line centre (Horcoff), and $2M each for Moreau and Nilsson. Before the season is out, the question marks, Pouliot, Brule and Jacques, must be addressed.

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#117 Curious
July 02 2009, 10:23AM
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Dont walk away Tambo....RUN AWAY!!!!

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#118 RobInALab
July 02 2009, 10:26AM
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Just read Spec's blog. I think he spouted more bull than Heatley and Murray combined. Very disgusting and reprehensible.

As far as this blog is concerned, I agree that given the situation the Oilers should be ashamed they didn't look at the contract more closely. I don't want to comment on the pursuit of other scorers though. It'd be a big assumption to suggest they didn't send feelers out for other players when the Heatley deal went sour. Though I'd suspect that by that time any feelers would have been met with a statement like 'Sorry, we've got another deal being finalized as we speak.'.

There have been suggestions that Heatley's agent kept mum over the incorrect interpretation of the contract. If this is true, are GM's above collusion and an all out refusal to deal with this agent ever again? This situation is bad for the league, not just Edmonton and Ottawa.

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#119 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:26AM
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DonDon wrote:

The problem is the Oil is paying $5.5M for a third line centre (Horcoff),

Horcoff is at the very least a 2nd line center.

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#120 GoGo
July 02 2009, 10:27AM
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Back away from the Heater. No reason to up the pot since Ottawa is in an even weaker bargaining position now...they must move Heatley. Heatley is hoping more clubs will show interest now that they won't be on the hook for the 4mil...still translates into him not wanting to come to Edmonton.

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#121 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:28AM
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RobInALab wrote:

Just read Spec’s blog. I think he spouted more bull than Heatley and Murray combined. Very disgusting and reprehensible.

If your talking about yesterdays article, then you missed it... he was talking tongue-in-cheek... He is a proud Edmontonian and was taking a run at millionaire hockey players.

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#122 TDSM31
July 02 2009, 10:28AM
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Chris. wrote:

Ducey wrote: I happen to know Roli and he was happy to stay here Thanks. That’s why I like this site… I don’t know Roli, on a personal level, and may have read too much into things. My take, is it’s the total failure of the Oilers organization to draft/develop even ONE legit starter since Grant Fuhr that led to the hole in net… After only one year as GM; How is that Tambellini’s fault?

Here, here....for anyone to be throwing stones at Tambellini is ridiculous. Just take a look at this teams draft record the past 10 years. It is embarrassing to say the least. The day that Stu MacGregor and Kevin Pendergast are no longer with this organization is the day we can start to progress. Cameron Abney in the 3rd round....WTF!!!

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#123 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:29AM
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RobInALab wrote:

There have been suggestions that Heatley’s agent kept mum over the incorrect interpretation of the contract. If this is true, are GM’s above collusion and an all out refusal to deal with this agent ever again? This situation is bad for the league, not just Edmonton and Ottawa.

I don't know - I like to think that most NHL teams (coughOttawacough) are bright enough to correctly interpret a contract they negotiated with a player.

As for Edmonton, I sure hope they were just taking Ottawa's word for it, because if they also misinterpreted the contract I'm a little disappointed in our capologist...

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#124 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:29AM
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GoGo wrote:

they must move Heatley.

Nuh uh.

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#125 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:35AM
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Eklund

More updates coming as i catch up with everyone on yesterday Getting info. Kaberle to Vancouver (e4), LA (e3), Aucoin signed in Phoenix 18 minutes ago from TweetDeck

Beauchemin and Kings getting close. about 1 hour ago from TweetDeck

Good morning At least 3 teams in on Koivu. Minnesota, Anaheim, and Buffao. Meanwhile is Montreal still possible? Working on a story. about 3 hours ago from TweetDeck

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#126 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:36AM
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I notice nobody is arguing that Neil constitutes a dodged bullet. From Ottawa, where he took less money to stay, comes this poll:

How do you like Neil's new contract? I like it -- we need more guys like Neil : 25% I hate it -- too much money for a one-dimensional player: 74%

Borrowed from the comments section:

"Where is the option for more than hate?" "If I wasn’t so angry at the Heatley situation, this would piss me off even more."

We're very lucky that Tambellini didn't get his way on this one.

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#127 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 10:37AM
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@ RossCreek:

Hmmm, as usual, no mention of the Oilers. Waiting on Heatly is destroying our off season.

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#128 Chester Copperpot
July 02 2009, 10:39AM
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@ Jonathan Willis:

Is there any chance that the conract was wording was just a little grey an could have been interpreted either away and that this isn't Edmonton's or Ottawa's fault but instead the NHL head office's doing.

My thoughts are that Edmonton and Ottawa likely wanted to be safe and interpreted their way so that the deal would be done BEFORE all the FAs came on the market.

All was good then at the last minute when the deal was almost closed and they just need a little more time, Heatley's agent pointed out to the NHL head offices that it could mean 11:59 of July 1st. NHL agreed to give the two teams time to complete the deal so that they wouldn't have a debacle around one of their stars... However once that extra time was given, Heatley and his agent didn't use it to finalize the deal and instead decided to use the full 24 hrs in hopes of a new deal.

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#129 Hemmertime
July 02 2009, 10:40AM
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Chester Copperpot wrote:

Heatley and his agent didn’t use it to finalize the deal and instead decided to use the full 24 hrs in hopes of a new deal.

Or use the 24 hours to not allow Murray to grab a big name FA because all are gone. Thus screwing OTT even if another team doesnt step up to the plate.

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#130 esa tikkanen
July 02 2009, 10:40AM
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willis, i completely agree with you that the Oilers dodged a bullet not signing Neal. Paying a guy 2.2 for 10 points and -13? I am sure there are other tough guys out there who are just as good for 1/3 the price...I wonder why the Oil didn't offer Laperriere anything?? Half the price and everybit as tough

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#131 Marc
July 02 2009, 10:41AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

OilW30 wrote: I’m wondering if you have evidence for two of your lines: “At this point, we find out that neither the Oilers nor Senators have been interpreting his contract correctly” Yes, McKenzie said that on TSN.

You may be making too much of this. I'm a lawyer and this strikes me as a case of a badly drafted contract rather than any incompetence on the part of Edmonton or Ottawa.

Without being able to see Heatley's contract I'm only speculating, but I suspect it has a term saying that Heatley is due a roster bonus of $4M on July 1st. In a well drafted contract, it would specify exactly what that means ie. payment is due at noon or at midnight or at the close of business hours etc.

In a poorly drafted contract however, it might just say July 1st, in which case there is some uncertainty as to exactly when on July 1st the money is due.

I suspect that both the Oilers and the Senators just assumed that the payment was due on the stroke of midnight on July 1st and worked to that deadline. When is became clear that Heatley wasn't going to waive his NMC before the deadline, they probably took another look at the contract and realised that there was nothing in the contract prohibiting the payment from being made at 11:59 PM, which would buy them another 24 hours. They then called the NHL to ask if there was anything in the CBA that specified when a bonus payment had to be made, and the NHL confirmed that there wasn't anything that would keep them from paying the bonus at 11:59.

This seems an entirely plausible scenario to me, and if this is the case, there is little, if anything that the Oilers did wrong. They went in to the negotiations willing to pay the bonus, so there wasn't any reason for them to read the fine print of that bit of the contract.

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#132 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:45AM
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@ Chester Copperpot:

Without having seen it, I'm pretty sure the contract was a little grey. That said, Ottawa negotiated the contract, so it's their own fault; the agent is just trying to help his client get what he wants.

The league head office is obliged to live by the actual contract.

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#133 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:46AM
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@ Marc: Thanks. Seems logical.

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#134 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:47AM
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@ Marc:

Thanks for that comment, which comes across as entirely sensible. The only point I would make is that Ottawa negotiated that contract, so I don't see how we can say there wasn't incompetence at least on their end.

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#135 RobInALab
July 02 2009, 10:48AM
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RossCreek wrote:

If your talking about yesterdays article, then you missed it… he was talking tongue-in-cheek… He is a proud Edmontonian and was taking a run at millionaire hockey players.

Yeah, that's the one. I'm still ticked at him, even if it was in tongue-in-cheek the comments that followed the blog all pointed towards a negative interpretation of the material. Yet I didn't see a followup message from him correcting them.

If he IS a proud Edmontonian then he should be able to recognize when an article is doing much more harm than good.

I love the one person's comment though how 'if a person had money would they really live in Edmonton?' Hell if a person had money tell me they wouldn't have a home in Mauii or somewhere else like that? Just ask Mr. Katz. ;)

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#136 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:51AM
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andystrickland Antropov Deal is worth closer to $16.4 million. His cap hit will be closer to $4.0625 per yr. Kovalchuk played a role in getting this done. 16 minutes ago from web

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#137 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 10:51AM
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Brownlee, Gregor or Willis: Are we persuing anyone at this point besides "Mr. Screw Around"?? We seem to have some other holes to fill, are those on the backburner until this super awesome situation get resolved?? Tambo is slowly going from my good books to my no so sure about this guy books.

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#138 Marc
July 02 2009, 10:58AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

@ Marc: Thanks for that comment, which comes across as entirely sensible. The only point I would make is that Ottawa negotiated that contract, so I don’t see how we can say there wasn’t incompetence at least on their end.

Agreed. Ottawa weren't familiar with the terms of a contract that they drafted (poorly it seems) and were a party to.

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#139 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 10:58AM
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I thought we were interested in Blair Betts?? Please tell me the Bhulin wall isn't our only summer pick up.

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#140 ronaldo
July 02 2009, 11:01AM
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Pitchfork- check Torch- check Argry mob- check Wetjet tickets to kelowna- pending

What works for you guys?

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#141 Milli
July 02 2009, 11:01AM
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Was just reading the Ottawa papers, and either murray is posturing, or Dannyboy has screwed himself. Unless Murray dosn't want Penner, but I think he does, he drafted him and thinks he can rekindle the fire. And, Murray goes on to say, there where very few teams that even made offers, only Edmonton was acceptable, and one was downright insulting. Seems to me, we have a star that greatly overestimated his star power. If I'm Tambo, the only way I still do this deal is without Cogs being involved. This guy is damaged goods at this point. Let's stay with what we have, pick up a center, build through the draft and develop young talent.

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#142 Hemmertime
July 02 2009, 11:04AM
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Milli wrote:

build through the draft and develop young talent.

We cant draft. We are horrible at it. Not a good plan until we show that has changed.

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#143 cambosmash
July 02 2009, 11:04AM
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How many players under the age of 23 scored 30 goals last year? 7 Malkin Crosby KESSEL Toews Setoguchi Ryan Little

How many of them don’t have contracts? Phil Kessel. Am I on crazy pills here? He's 21 years old, 6', 180 and a 5th pick overall. Played second line with slightly above average linemates against slightly above average competition. Wasn't even getting 14 minutes a game, missed 12 games, played through injury and potted 36. Not just another Marco's Famous loving RFA.

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#144 Chester Copperpot
July 02 2009, 11:10AM
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@ Hemmertime:

Why can't we draft? The drafting has gone pretty well lately.

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#145 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 11:15AM
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Hemmertime wrote:

We cant draft. We are horrible at it. Not a good plan until we show that has changed.

Yes, because picks like Cogliano, Hartikainen, Eberle and Omark look so bad right now....

People who think the Oilers are bad at drafting haven't looked at the league as a whole.

Want proof? This study from 1999-2005 includes a pair of largely wasted drafts courtesy of Barry Fraser, and still has Edmonton hanging right around the average mark.

I'm firmly convinced that they've improved since MacGregor took over - picks like Teemu Hartikainen are looking like steals.

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#146 Doug
July 02 2009, 11:17AM
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Kessel was rumoured to be availble by trade around the time of the draft wasn't he?

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#147 dragon
July 02 2009, 11:19AM
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Hemmertime wrote:

Milli wrote: build through the draft and develop young talent. We cant draft. We are horrible at it. Not a good plan until we show that has changed.

then hire someone that can! draft becomes some much more important in this day and age.

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#148 MattDynasty
July 02 2009, 11:20AM
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anybody know if the Oilers brass is going to break there silence and address the media anytime soon?

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#149 Hemmertime
July 02 2009, 11:21AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Yes, because picks like Cogliano, Hartikainen, Eberle and Omark look so bad right now….

Ya, I read article before where more of our picks end up playing in the NHL compared to others. Thats good, but Rita, Salmelainen, Schremp and Bosignore (sp?) looked good too. Way too early, and Cogs isnt a player you win the cup with in your top 6, not a big deal.

Name me some NHL players that we drafted that are decent, not unproven prospects to back your argument.

Though I do have to say I was happy with this years draft for first time in awhile.

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#150 I'm a Scientist!
July 02 2009, 11:21AM
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How about this hypothesis...

Chris Neil originally wanted a big contract, demanding big money and at least 4 years. Ottawa said no and then approached NYR and EDM to help them out... you scratch my back...i scratch yours sort of thing. For example, EDM offers Neil a deal for less than what OTT wants to pay, for a shorter term and Neil sees that his value on the open market is not all it is cracked up to be. In turn, OTT will look more favorably to EDM for Heater.. Same deal with NYR. Just seems suspicious that Neil would attract attention from the two clubs that are also pursuing Heatley!

Just my conspiracy theory...

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