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.

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, 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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#51 Gerald R. Ford
July 02 2009, 07:16AM
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As frustrated as we may feel now, and as mad as the Senators are (justifiably so), I really think that Heatley bolting from Atlanta was far, far worse, and an early sign that this is not a quality person we're dealing with here. I know everyone cuts him some slack for this first incident, citing "how hard" it would have been for him to stay there, but, considering how supportive the organization was to him, not to mention the extremely lenient treatment he received from the Georgia judicial system (thanks in great part to the pleadings of Dan Snyder's parents on his behalf), you'd think maybe he would have wanted to repay the community, the team, and everyone who helped him by being a solid citizen and going back to work. Nope. "Trade me."

This is a spoiled, unstable, brat who has no idea how lucky he is, and, I'm starting to think, neither do we.

Next, please.

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#52 OilW30
July 02 2009, 07:28AM
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Jonathan,

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"

Is there any actual evidence for this? Millard has suggested that the Sens at least may have known the true deadline. We haven't heard from the Oilers at all, so we don't know what they thought. Maybe everyone wanted it done before free agency started and so they didn't say anything to the media who had it wrong (the media still also calls the $4 million a "bonus").

"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."

There's no reason to believe that the Oilers didn't try to go after these guys. The Heatley deal was already in place, and, although we heard that a few calls were made to Heatley, there's no reason to think that they put very much time into the Heatley deal yesterday. It even sounds like "the meeting" was with Lowe and not Tambo.

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#53 Librarian Mike
July 02 2009, 07:55AM
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I'm not surprised that the Oilers are saying they're optimisitic about getting Heatley. What are they going to say to the media: "We have no shot, but we'll keep trying"?

Frankly, I'm shocked that they're still working on this after being jerked around by Heatley/Senators/Murray/Air Canada or whomever else.

One thing I do know is that wherever he ends up, Dany Heatley is in for a long, long 09-10 season.

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#54 Lofty
July 02 2009, 07:58AM
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I feel for the Sens organization more than my beloved Oilers. They helped this player through a tough time, commited to him in a big way with a new contract and then got slapped in the face by the NHL's Britany Spears.

I wonder if anyone from the NHLPA will have a word with Heatley... "You are embarassing us!" As far as Heatley's return to the Sens dressing room being tough... I think he lost the respect of every NHL player through this ordeal. There is not a dressing room in the league that won't laugh at this clown.

He better have a hell of a year wherever he plays otherwise he will get bullied like a school boy.

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#55 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 07:59AM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

I’m not worried that much about Khabibulin. The way these guys condition themselves a goalie can play into his early 40s. Bulin can be an excellent goaltender and he doesnt have to play out the contract. He can retire and that money comes off the books. I have no issue with our goaltending right now.

When a player signs a contract after they've turned 35, the entirity of the contract will remain on the books regardless of injury/retirement. Sorry.

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#56 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 08:03AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Where is Biron going to play now?

Biron has the same agent as Roloson. Is it not possible that his agent was holding the Oil for ransom because of Roli, so they went Khabibulin.

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#57 SkinnyD
July 02 2009, 08:08AM
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Anyone who thinks the Oilers Management didn't have many, many, multiple scenarios and strategies and offers for free agents and trades is extremely simple. Certainly this could be looked at as a bit of a defining moment for Tambellini - but NO ONE knows the extent of what's happening here - not even Bob McKenzie - except Heatley, his agents, the Oilers and Senators. Period. You can't just 'get rid of Penner' in another trade to make room for Hossa. Maybe this is the only deal where Penner was even wanted to go the other way? Kubina has upside...a much easier move for Burke to have made to bring in Komisarek. The situations are incredibly different.

Jon, your lack of actual published fact is a touch troubling in this thread.

Have some faith and hold steady, soldiers...

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#58 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 08:08AM
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Beukaboom wrote:

I don’t think the term of Bulin’s contact is great but he will be in KHL for the 2012-13 season.

And if he is, his cap hit will still be on the Oilers books. RossCreek wrote:

When a player signs a contract after they’ve turned 35, the entirity of the contract will remain on the books regardless of injury/retirement. Sorry.
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#59 Milli
July 02 2009, 08:15AM
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I don't think the Bulin contract is a bad one, but I like JW do question signing an older goalie for 4 yrs and decent money as oppossed to signing Roli for the 2yrs @ 5 mil. I still like roli, and hope he enjoys the Island. Heatley, now that is a sore spot. If he wanted to come here today, I wouldn't want him. But, I take him in a heart beat. How often do you get a 50 goal guy? How many of these guys are like this? It seems to me, the "talented pro athletes" more often than not are self centered prima donna's. This guy, I think he is trying to be the leader of the pack. And, what exactly is he screwing Ottawa over for? For singing him long term to big money? For giving him a huge signing bonus? For giving him a no trade? I don't understand. What I hope happens is that Murray balls up and lets him sit for a year, or at least until the deadline, then says, Danny boy, waive your no trade, and I'll find a deal for you. I for one, would like to see the Gm's take some power back, and I wish Klo had of done this with Proger.

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#60 cambosmash
July 02 2009, 08:17AM
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You know who only scored 3 goals less than Heatley last year and also wants to put the screws to his team? Phil Kessel. A 21 year old 36 goal scorer (maybe not with the Oilers, but I'm optimistic) for under $5M seems to make a lot of sense right now.

I thought that was supposed to be the biggest firework in North America last night. I've seen bigger.

*said while still hiding under the bed shaking from the ground shattering, booming explosion produced by said firework.

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#61 Rick
July 02 2009, 08:32AM
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Jonathon, does Tambellini even have a track record to be a fan of? First reaction to the goaltending move is that it's a miss, although the draft can be considered decent the results are going through the scouts lists...no GMing there, the trade deadline was creative but didn't make the team better, the Heatley deal would appear to be the result of a lack of homework on the Oilers part...I could go on but the point is there.

As for Tencer's twitter about Heatley wanting to put the screws to Ottawa, IF that came directly or third hand from Heatley how many more red flags does that raise? Does that mean that whereever his next destination is he will want to "put the screws" to them too if things get sour? Can anyone even take what Heatley says at face value or is that a case of a guy being forced to talk face to face and simply saying whatever he can think of to get out of an uncomfortable spot? It's not like he has been very above board with anyone eles throughout this mess.

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#62 BK16
July 02 2009, 08:34AM
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Do we really want a player who as Tencer put it," trying to put the screws to Ottawa." It seems as though Heatley just sealed his fate in Ottawa by his indecisiveness and forcing them to pay out his $4 M bonus. I thought Bryan Murray stated that if they were forced to pay out the $4 M the Sens would not be moving this guy? I would REALLY like my be-loved Oil to have a prolific goal scorer, but not one that is a cancer in the room.

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#63 Chris.
July 02 2009, 08:35AM
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I like the Khabibulin signing; I think he's got a chip on his shoulder and wants to punish Chicago for putting him on waivers... 36+4=40 just like 3+1=40. Apparently goalies DO have an expiration date.

Also, lets not forget there may be more to the Roli situation than just issues of term: a) Last season Roli had quietly requested a trade. b) This season Roli's family stayed in Ontario c) Coming off a great season, Roli instantly signed a smallish contract with a rebuilding franchise to play backup...

I'm just sayin... It looks to me like Roli couldn't wait to get out of town...

Thankfully, he was classy enough to say the two year term was the reason, rather than give this city ANOTHER black eye.

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#64 Chris.
July 02 2009, 08:36AM
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39+1=40. *edit*

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#65 Heazues
July 02 2009, 08:39AM
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RossCreek wrote:

When a player signs a contract after they’ve turned 35, the entirity of the contract will remain on the books regardless of injury/retirement. Sorry

i thought injury was the exception. if a player has a carreer ending injury doesnt the contract come off the books and the insurance company pay's the contract?

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#66 scorecoff hemmercules
July 02 2009, 08:49AM
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@ Jonathan Willis:

I keep hearing that Smid, Penner and Cogs hate the oilers now because they have been involved in a trade that went wrong. Is that at all true?? I don't expect them to be happy but its part of the business IMO. I hope these guys can remain professional this year, last thing we need is three pissed off players all year, again.

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#67 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 08:50AM
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Heazues wrote:

RossCreek wrote: When a player signs a contract after they’ve turned 35, the entirity of the contract will remain on the books regardless of injury/retirement. Sorry i thought injury was the exception. if a player has a carreer ending injury doesnt the contract come off the books and the insurance company pay’s the contract?

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.

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#68 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 08:55AM
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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.

Further, is that not what the whole problem with giving Roli the 2 year deal was? If he got hurt or his play fell off, then that 2nd year would be stuck on the books. Willis? Gregor? Brownlee? Confirmation...

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#69 Sean
July 02 2009, 08:59AM
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* Plan B – Sign Marian Hossa.

Wasnt gonna happen

* Plan C – Sign Martin Havlat.

Would have liked to see them offer 5.5 over 6 he might have taken it

* Plan D – Sign Marian Gaborik.

Wasnt gonna happen

* Plan E – Sign Mike Cammalleri.

Do we want another small forward who isnt worth 6 million per?

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#70 Ducey
July 02 2009, 09:00AM
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Chris. wrote:

I’m just sayin… It looks to me like Roli couldn’t wait to get out of town… Thankfully, he was classy enough to say the two year term was the reason, rather than give this city ANOTHER black eye.

I happen to know Roli and he was happy to stay here. He really wants to play as long as possible and the two years was the biggest factor. He moved his family because of the 3 tender "system" last year and the uncertainty about whether he would be the one traded.

I am happy with the Bulin wall coming to town. This team is still young and needs a veteran tender. If he needs to be bought out it would be for 2/3's spread over twice the term of the contract. $3.75M / year is pretty reasonable.

As for Heatley, I think that his agent and he knew that many teams didn't want to pay the $4 M bonus. I bet he figures that now that Ottawa has paid that, that other teams will come forward and make proposals. From a business perspective it makes sense. He has just forgotten that some people (often called "fans") tend to be emotionally attached to their teams and towns.

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#71 Oilman
July 02 2009, 09:03AM
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Jonathon,

A few points - why rag on JDD when neither Anderson or Clemmensen, supposedly good options, were ever stellar AHL goaltenders? A contract to either of those guys is as much a risk as any other. Anderson - for some reason, had a .948SP in games where he faced 40+ shots - the remainder of games played, his SP was .895. It'll be interesting to see what he does as a starter.

Maybe there is something to Bulin's shot quality numbers - he went from cup champion to what was around the worse team in the league in Chicago. There defence had rookies Seabrook, Keith, Barker, Wisniewski. Adrian Aucoin looked like he was done, and Jim Vandermeer and Spacek were there only other experienced D. In fact, Craig Anderson and his .886SP backed up in goal for Chicago that year.

It's great to list off all the other left wingers available yesterday - but we can't assume any would have signed here. It's likely more correct to assume that they all wouldn't have signed here based on recent history. And,had they signed here, how would we clear cap space. Heatley seemed to be the only way to shed Penners salary....because seriously - if the Oilers are the only real bidders for Heatley, I can't imagine teams lining up to take on Penners salary for picks or prospects. That said, hopefully Tambellini does the right thing and pulls that offer off the table and issues the statement somewhere along the lines of "we are not interested in begging for players - so f#@k off Dany"

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#72 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 09:06AM
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Here is the roster for the Olympic Orientation Camp at the end of August in Calgary...

Goaltenders (5)

Martin Brodeur (Montreal, Que./New Jersey, NHL) Marc-André Fleury (Sorel, Que./Pittsburgh, NHL)

Roberto Luongo (Montreal, Que./Vancouver, NHL) Steve Mason (Oakville, Ont./Columbus, NHL)

Cam Ward (Sherwood Park, Alta./Carolina, NHL)

Defencemen (16)

François Beauchemin (Sorel, Que./Anaheim, NHL) Jay Bouwmeester (Edmonton, Alta./Calgary, NHL)

Dan Boyle (Ottawa, Ont./San Jose, NHL) Brent Burns (Ajax, Ont./Minnesota, NHL)

Drew Doughty (London, Ont./Los Angeles, NHL) Mike Green (Calgary, Alta./Washington, NHL)

Dan Hamhuis (Smithers, B.C./Nashville, NHL) Duncan Keith (Penticton, B.C./Chicago, NHL)

Scott Niedermayer (Cranbrook, B.C./Anaheim, NHL) Dion Phaneuf (Edmonton, Alta./Calgary, NHL)

Chris Pronger (Dryden, Ont./Philadelphia, NHL) Robyn Regehr (Rosthern, Sask./Calgary, NHL)

Stéphane Robidas (Sherbrooke, Que./Dallas, NHL) Brent Seabrook (Tsawwassen, B.C./Chicago, NHL)

Marc Staal (Thunder Bay, Ont./N.Y. Rangers, NHL) Shea Weber (Sicamous, B.C./Nashville, NHL)

Forwards (25)

Jeff Carter (London, Ont./Philadelphia, NHL) Dan Cleary (Carboneau, N.L./Detroit, NHL)

Sidney Crosby (Cole Harbour, N.S./Pittsburgh, NHL) Shane Doan (Halkirk, Alta./Phoenix, NHL)

Simon Gagné (Ste-Foy, Que./Philadelphia, NHL) Ryan Getzlaf (Regina, Sask./Anaheim, NHL)

Dany Heatley (Calgary, Alta./Ottawa, NHL) Jarome Iginla (St. Albert, Alta./Calgary, NHL)

Vincent Lecavalier (Île-Bizard, Que./Tampa Bay, NHL) Milan Lucic (Vancouver, B.C./Boston, NHL)

Patrick Marleau (Aneroid, Sask./San Jose, NHL) Andy McDonald (Strathroy, Ont./St. Louis, NHL)

Brenden Morrow (Carlyle, Sask./Dallas, NHL) Rick Nash (Brampton, Ont./Columbus, NHL)

Corey Perry (Peterborough, Ont./Anaheim, NHL) Michael Richards (Kenora, Ont./Philadelphia, NHL)

Derek Roy (Rockland, Ont./Buffalo, NHL) Joe Sakic (Burnaby, B.C./Colorado, NHL)

Patrick Sharp (Thunder Bay, Ont./Chicago, NHL) Ryan Smyth (Banff, Alta./Colorado, NHL)

Martin St-Louis (Laval, Que./Tampa Bay, NHL) Eric Staal (Thunder Bay, Ont./Carolina, NHL)

Jordan Staal (Thunder Bay, Ont./Pittsburgh, NHL) Joe Thornton (St. Thomas, Ont./San Jose, NHL)

Jonathan Toews (Winnipeg, Man./Chicago, NHL)

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#73 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 09:06AM
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Sean wrote:

* Plan B – Sign Marian Hossa. Wasnt gonna happen * Plan C – Sign Martin Havlat. Would have liked to see them offer 5.5 over 6 he might have taken it * Plan D – Sign Marian Gaborik. Wasnt gonna happen * Plan E – Sign Mike Cammalleri. Do we want another small forward who isnt worth 6 million per?

Agree with everything.

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#74 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 09:11AM
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Ducey wrote:

If he needs to be bought out it would be for 2/3’s spread over twice the term of the contract. $3.75M / year is pretty reasonable.

Still counts as 3.75 toward the cap as he's over 35.

Ducey wrote:

I bet he figures that now that Ottawa has paid that, that other teams will come forward and make proposals.

True dat. Watch the LA Kings slither in now. They've been awfully quiet, even though they were expected to be loud. Obviously, they didn't want to spend the big bucks. Now, they can get a 7.5 mil player for 4 mil in actual $'s. And they have the cap room to add the 7.5 AND the bodies to make a decent offer. It'll be up to Ottawa whether they 'play ball'.

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#75 DonDon
July 02 2009, 09:25AM
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There seems to be two different types of posters here. One critical of the fact Tambellini accomplished very little in FA and the other defending the fact that Tambellini accomplished very little in FA. Hmmm. What a fruitless waste of time. My sense is that Tambellini became paralyzed when the Heatley deal fell apart and Lowe wasn't about to get his hands dirty after all all the mistakes he has made. There are still some possibilities. Complete the Heatley deal with Ottawa and then package Heatley with some toxic contracts and make a trade with San Jose for Thornton or Marleau and Cheecho, etc. Heatley gets to where he wants to be, the Oilers get a first line centre, some scoring/grit and unload Horcoff, Moreau, whatever. Use some imagination Tambellini.

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#76 Alon
July 02 2009, 09:26AM
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@ RossCreek:

WHy would LA come in now, after the assistant GM came out and said they want nothing to do with him? And that his wanting out of 2 teams now sends up red flags? Thinknig LA might come in seems like grasping at strwas.

Edmonton seems like the only team that really wants the guy, and Heatley might have to accept that.

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#77 Chris.
July 02 2009, 09:28AM
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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?

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#78 dragon
July 02 2009, 09:34AM
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Ducey wrote:

I happen to know Roli and he was happy to stay here. He really wants to play as long as possible and the two years was the biggest factor. He moved his family because of the 3 tender “system” last year and the uncertainty about whether he would be the one traded. I am happy with the Bulin wall coming to town. This team is still young and needs a veteran tender. If he needs to be bought out it would be for 2/3’s spread over twice the term of the contract. $3.75M / year is pretty reasonable.

I think the Bulin signing spells the plan ahead for JDD and Dubnik. JDD gets a serious chance this year. If it works, bigger chance next year, if not, enter Dubnik (for a similar 30 games chance). The last 2 years of Bulin's contract are planned as handover to a younger goalie...Not too bad IMO

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#79 dragon
July 02 2009, 09:35AM
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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?

I guess that explains the 'departure' of the netminders coach.

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#80 Doug
July 02 2009, 09:42AM
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Antropov signs with Atlanta for 4 years and sixteen million... is that less than Penner makes?

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#81 Doug
July 02 2009, 09:43AM
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Why do I have a terrible, sinking suspicion that I will spend the entire day watching as the all the "day two" free agents sign with other clubs and the Oiler spend all day chasing their tales with Heatley?

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#82 Rogue
July 02 2009, 09:53AM
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Me thinks Oil are going after Heatley like they are Cup contenders. Which they are not. Go after Gagne, who I think is a more complete player.Right now they look like a deer caught in the Headlights. Buhlin is a good signing, but lets not forget some toughness, forward and defense and some competent Centers who can win 50% of draws. We are not a Cup threat, so maybe we should try to build from within or thru trades. Just not convinced big name FA's are the answer.

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#83 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 09:55AM
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Shaun Doe wrote:

The thing that most strikes me as odd about this situation is the continued efforts by the oilers to get this deal finished despite the numerous sources implying that the deal is all but dead.

...sources who the night before couldn't decide if the deal was done, dead, or on hold. Let's face it - the guys actually in the meeting with Heatley have a better idea about his willingness to come here than any of the reporters covering the story.

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#84 cm
July 02 2009, 09:56AM
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I'm not real sad we missed out on heatley. IMHO the oilers will have done well in FA with the addition of two players.

Manny Maholtra and Kurtis Foster.

It gives us room to move one of the D for some help up front and it gives us a legit 3rd line center.

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#85 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 09:57AM
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Doug wrote:

Antropov signs with Atlanta for 4 years and sixteen million… is that less than Penner makes?

Yup. Thats not a bad number. I would've been in on him for that. Didn't Quinn like Antropov or not?

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#86 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 09:58AM
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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.

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#87 cm
July 02 2009, 09:58AM
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On a side note why was Andy Mcdonald invited to the team canada camp.

I would take either Spezza or Horcoff over him in a heartbeat.

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#88 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 09:59AM
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Bryan Murray just stated that the deal is dead... That he is willing to work on a new deal with Edmonton however... because of the $4 mil, a new package is required.

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#89 Doug
July 02 2009, 09:59AM
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Obviously the Antrpovs, Kovalevs and etc are not in the same class of player as Dany but they're cheaper and have less character issues. Please Tambo, the Sens say the deal is dead & that they had to pay the bonus so let's MOVE ON.

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#90 ScubaSteve
July 02 2009, 10:01AM
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Well, as crappy as this all is, if the deal goes through, and the oilers can sign a 3rd line center that can win draws, I would say all of our major holes are filled. We took care of goaltending, we'll have our 1st LW, and 3rd C.

Only other moves I would make is to try to move staois, nillson for prospects/picks, but that's maybe a pipe dream, not sure what those 2 guys are worth.

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#91 Reggie
July 02 2009, 10:01AM
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RossCreek wrote:

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. Further, is that not what the whole problem with giving Roli the 2 year deal was? If he got hurt or his play fell off, then that 2nd year would be stuck on the books. Willis? Gregor? Brownlee? Confirmation…

I believe there is an injury exemption related to the cap - we saw it with Mogilny in NJ and with Rathje and Hatcher in Philly.

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#92 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:02AM
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Oilman wrote:

A few points - why rag on JDD when neither Anderson or Clemmensen, supposedly good options, were ever stellar AHL goaltenders?

I've said before I don't like Clemmensen. As for Anderson, here are his AHL numbers:

2002-03: .923 SV% 2003-04: .914 SV% 2004-05: .929 SV% 2006-07: .919 SV%

Deslauriers' AHL career-high was .912 SV%.

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#93 Alon
July 02 2009, 10:04AM
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@ RossCreek:

Source? Where did you see that?

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#94 dragon
July 02 2009, 10:06AM
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DonDon wrote:

There seems to be two different types of posters here. One critical of the fact Tambellini accomplished very little in FA and the other defending the fact that Tambellini accomplished very little in FA. Hmmm. What a fruitless waste of time. My sense is that Tambellini became paralyzed when the Heatley deal fell apart and Lowe wasn’t about to get his hands dirty after all all the mistakes he has made. There are still some possibilities. Complete the Heatley deal with Ottawa and then package Heatley with some toxic contracts and make a trade with San Jose for Thornton or Marleau and Cheecho, etc. Heatley gets to where he wants to be, the Oilers get a first line centre, some scoring/grit and unload Horcoff, Moreau, whatever. Use some imagination Tambellini.

I thought it was quite clear that we don't have the cap room to play a big role in the FA market. Tambo should really focus on trade deals as moving some players out is critical, both from cap room perspective and the desire for a new/revived culture point of view.

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#95 Jonathan Willis
July 02 2009, 10:06AM
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RE: Cap Hit for Players Over 35

As I understand it, the cap hit remains on the books, but as with any LTIR the team is allowed to exceed the salary cap by the number of dollars owed the player - if he's injured. So if Khabibulin/Roli get hurt, the team isn't getting dinged for their cap hit.

If the wheels fall off, on the other hand, the team can't bury them in the minors - and I'm not sure, but I don't think they can be shipped off to the KHL either. The only way out is the Malakhov route.

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#96 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:07AM
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Alon wrote:

@ RossCreek: Source? Where did you see that?

RossCreek wrote:

Bryan Murray just stated that the deal is dead… That he is willing to work on a new deal with Edmonton however… because of the $4 mil, a new package is required.

Sorry... as per The TEAM 1260's AJ JAKUBEC

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#97 Oilman
July 02 2009, 10:07AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Oilman wrote: A few points - why rag on JDD when neither Anderson or Clemmensen, supposedly good options, were ever stellar AHL goaltenders? I’ve said before I don’t like Clemmensen. As for Anderson, here are his AHL numbers: 2002-03: .923 SV% 2003-04: .914 SV% 2004-05: .929 SV% 2006-07: .919 SV% Deslauriers’ AHL career-high was .912 SV%.

Career high in games played is also 37. One of those years was 15 games - I'm not sold yet.

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#98 Hemmertime
July 02 2009, 10:08AM
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@ Jonathan Willis: I feel alot better going into the season with Bulin than Anderson or Harding. Anderson or Harding are POTENTIAL starters on their teams, but need a legit #1 to cushion them. Bulin is proven

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#99 RossCreek
July 02 2009, 10:08AM
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@ Jonathan Willis: Thanks.

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#100 Reggie
July 02 2009, 10:09AM
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RossCreek wrote:

Bryan Murray just stated that the deal is dead… That he is willing to work on a new deal with Edmonton however… because of the $4 mil, a new package is required.

Well, time to walk away then... and rub our wounds ... and shake our heads and pour another drink ...

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