The Airing of Grievances

Lowetide
December 22 2010 09:29PM

Frank Costanza: "And at the Festivus dinner, you gather your family around, and tell them all the ways they have disappointed you over the past year!" On Festivus eve, I thought it might be an idea to get a head start. 
 

Here are my issues with the Edmonton Oilers hockey club:

  1. Why don't you address the penality kill? It's really horrible. Call up Reddox, make a trade or sign one of the many free agents still out there. But do something. I don't expect this team to make the playoffs (making me more realistic than the coach) but lordy it would be nice for the kids to see how a penalty kill works.
  2. Faceoffs. Win them! I was listening to a Logan Couture interview the other day and he says the Sharks pride themselves on winning faceoffs. It's a real focus for the entire team, from the coaching staff all the way down to the wingers who don't take too many draws. They're all pulling together. What are they doing that the Oilers aren't doing? Couture is over 50%. Why is that? Maybe someone should look into it since it's been an issue since 2006 spring.
  3. I don't like the implied threats about the arena. I trust the Oilers know exactly what they're doing in terms of public relations, the way an adult female knows exactly what is and isn't covered with every outfit she owns. There's an undeniable message being sent when "leaks" about "relocating to Quebec City" are allowed to float out into the ether for a few hours before the "we have no plans to move the Oilers at this time" presser reaches the bloodstream. I hope the Katz group remembers there is an enormous amount of resentment over the way Peter Pocklington went Harold Hill on this city and its residents. Let the giant sleep. If it wakes, you won't like it.
  4. Be nicer to Northlands. You're going to be hiring their employees soon. We're seeing the last few months of Northlands. It's like one of those nature shows where the cheetah takes a snake bite and dies over 8 hours. Painful. The Katz plan (as I understand it) will render Northlands obsolete, but the employees represent Marian the librarian and could be very important to the finale. Anyway, I hope it works out but we're miles from 'Til There Was You.

That's about it. Happy Festivus, everyone! And best of the holidays to you!

C2a6955161684b5e3189319acfa5ebe4
Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
Avatar
#51 Dennis
December 23 2010, 09:07AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Wanyes bastard child wrote:

My grievance... whats your issue with Gregor? Did he date your sister or something and then dump her leaving her with a broken heart?

You've come along way since your fly by night runs at anything Brownlee had to say or post but it seems lately that you are holding Gregor personally accountable for everything the MSM says or doesn't say to the team regarding the PK or face off issues.

You have interesting insight a lot of the time and while I may not read your blog I do stop to read your comments on here but it seems that every second or third comment you are calling out Jason to call out the coaches. Can you please give it up, let the dead horse be beaten and just hope that it gets fixed in the next year or two?

Seriously, its not like a question about the PK or the faceoff from Jason is going to make Tambs think "Holy sh!t, you mean our PK/FO really does suck!? Thanks for pointing this out man, we'll get on it right away!" They can read stats, see what their team is doing and know what is going on. With the salary cap and in this day and age its not as easy to address all the glaring holes in your roster, especially when your in a rebuild. Sure there are some moves and non-moves that could have been handled MUCH better but this is the team we have so deal with it. Next year will be different.

Next year will be different? How many years now have the Oilers been looking for faceoff men and PKers? The burden of proof is on the two GM's to find people but until they do I think it's naive to think it will be different just because the calender turns.

These are guys who see players with sub 50% faceoff pcts and magically think they'll improve enough to make the cut so let's see them bring guys in before we expect they will or can.

As for me improving as a poster, I posted to RB awhile back that I didn't come at things from the right angle and I apologized for that; but I also told him that I didn't think I was wrong for citing the issues that I did, either. My only mistake, at least IMO, was the way I approached it.

Avatar
#52 Dennis
December 23 2010, 09:17AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dan the Man wrote:

How was the PK the last few years Pisani was here?

I believe Staples posted some numbers that showed that 34 did an excellent job on the PK so while he can't play a full 2 min everytime, he makes 500K and we know there's one thing he can do well.

Unlike guys like 22-33 who don't do anything well or a guy like 67 who was gonna be hard-pressed to replicate his '10 numbers.

My point was all about finding cheap guys and slotting them into situations where they can help us and I think Pisani could have been one of those guys.

Avatar
#53 DoubleTap
December 23 2010, 09:19AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Dennis

I said uninformed, not misinformed.

I've heard Gregor on his radio show discuss the face off problem in great length.

Avatar
#54 speeds
December 23 2010, 09:55AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

I'm certainly not saying this issue has never been talked up, but I don't know that I've heard anyone ask Tambellini something like:

This summer, many fans/people thought the PK needed to be addressed as it was radically undermanned in terms of established PK personnel. Currently, the PK unit is beyond mediocre. Would you say that it's accurate to state that some fans able to see this deficiency while you did not? Or, did you accurately see and assess the current personnel, and just decide to see what they can do on the PK given the opportunity? Reasoning that if they stink (as you probably expected), it helps the draft pick and gives some players a chance to PK at the NHL level? And if they surprised you and performed well, or grow into performing well, it would help you long term?"

Avatar
#55 John Chambers
December 23 2010, 09:58AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

My grievance is with the New Jersey Devils. They're not supposed to be mired in a re-build. It looks like they might jump us in draft position, which I find disgraceful and opportunistic.

But they've finally come to their senses and fired their coach. Merry Christmas, Mr. McLean.

Maybe that will propel the Devils ahead of us in the standings and we can dream sweet dreams of Adam Larsson again.

Peach on Earth.

Avatar
#56 GSC
December 23 2010, 10:20AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dennis wrote:

I can't believe that points 1 and 2 are still an issue.

The Oilers Try to sign Malholtra to win draws and kill penalties but because he wouldn't come here the Effort seems to be enough from their end; it's an attitude that's even supported by media like Gregor for instance.

You either find those guys or you FAIL in trying to do so.

There aren't any grey areas.

Old 34 was a hell of a PK guy here and why not bring him back on the 4th line so he's around for that purpose. Old 19 was a guy that grated on some fans because of MacT's love for him but the things he could do well - faceoffs and PK - aren't talents that are easily found.

At least not when it comes to Lowe and Tambellini.

All you know for sure is that the Oilers pursued Malhotra. You're presuming that they stopped there.

Maybe the Oilers struck out on the FA front? Maybe Tambi saw another lottery pick team and decided to look within the organization to address need? It can't hurt to see what's in the cupboard for the future.

But nah, let's blame the organization for passing on washed up veterans...That's the easy way out.

Avatar
#57 Dan the Man
December 23 2010, 10:23AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dennis wrote:

I believe Staples posted some numbers that showed that 34 did an excellent job on the PK so while he can't play a full 2 min everytime, he makes 500K and we know there's one thing he can do well.

Unlike guys like 22-33 who don't do anything well or a guy like 67 who was gonna be hard-pressed to replicate his '10 numbers.

My point was all about finding cheap guys and slotting them into situations where they can help us and I think Pisani could have been one of those guys.

Please see comment #29.

You're wrong about 33, he fights well.

Avatar
#58 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
December 23 2010, 10:24AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Oh Boy! I sure liked that point #3 LT! Sure is nice to see someone pointing these things out to the Oilers faithful!

Management has to realize that the fanbase here is a lot sharper than in most markets and lines get read between. Mess with our team and you mess with our emotions.

Avatar
#59 BarryS
December 23 2010, 10:52AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Dennis

Improve the powerplay/faceoffs by about half, stop taking lazy penalties and making lazy plays like offsides and cheap icings. If I see another lazy holding play I may scream. If you're tired get off the ice.

In any event, at this time worring about faceoffs and pk is like worring about the lipstick coming off the pigs. It is but new stock at reasonable prices are not available till spring and summer.

Avatar
#60 Tyler
December 23 2010, 10:54AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

By the way, Brownlee said "taking digs at the writers here." Don't get ahead of yourself, hombre.

Do you think it's at all possible that I wasn't suggesting that Tencer writes here but, rather, that it's exceedingly thin skinned to complain about people jabbing you for reporting related matters while you yourself delight in kicking the hell out of some schlub based on how he looks?

Whether Tencer writes here or not wasn't my point. Say what you will about Dennis but I don't recall much in the way of comment about the appearance of people here.

1) Many fans taking the easy way out and blaming Tambellini instead of the players and/or coaches. He's the favorite whipping boy of the "Oilogosphere," and it's not fully deserved. He isn't perfect, but he's not entirely to blame for this debacle.

I will agree that Tambo isn't entirely to blame. These "players" and "coaches" you mention though...how did they come to be here? Did Jason Strudwick band together with JF Jacques, Zack Stortini, Nik Khabibulin and the rest and decide to establish a hockey team in Edmonton under the direction of Pat Quinn (I haven't seen too much heat directed Renney's way, other than with the PK) and install Tambo as a figurehead, like the Queen? My recollection is somewhat different.

Avatar
#61 Pajamah
December 23 2010, 10:59AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I find it funny that Tyler and Dennis come here to beak at Robin and JG, because no one would read it if they made the same comments on their own blogs

Keep wallowing in your own mediocrity gentlemen.

Avatar
#62 BarryS
December 23 2010, 11:03AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Tyler

One thing I've noticed of late. Edmonton is clearly a left wing union town, the problems are always because of the owners/management and never because of the workers/players.

Some guy gets let go or signs somewhere else and everybody is clammering to get him hired back.

Rule one, don't like the working conditions quit.

Rule two. don't like the product, don't buy it.

That's why we're a free country, we can freely exercise both options.

Avatar
#63 Wanye
December 23 2010, 11:12AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Grievances:

1)The Mighty Oil are too good to be a lottery team, yet not ready to make the playoffs. Either make it or tank if you please.

2)Stupid Logan Couture and his 18 goals are putting Eberle's Calder win in mild jeopardy.

3)The Arena debate. Kindly enslave us to higher taxes for a generation with a $300 million dollar taxpayer funded arena and get on with the show.

4)Brule. Pick it up Cuz. Everyone is cheering for you.

Avatar
#64 freeze
December 23 2010, 11:13AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Chaz

Already happened, unfortunately. I was at a game earlier this year and two gents were in the blue 'outfits'. I have a pic somewhere at home...

Avatar
#65 BarryS
December 23 2010, 11:23AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Tyler

In my experience, since year one Alberta Oilers, the fans set the tone for the media. When the fans are upset the media gets upset, when the fans realize they risk loosing the team, and begins following it again, for example, the media suddenly becomes all positive.

As for JFJ, don't blame him for not bring first line, do wonder about his committment when he doesn't seem to want to change his game to stay in the league. For all his lack of success, at the moment, at least, Gogs, for example, seems to be trying to make a place for himself.

Avatar
#66 GSC
December 23 2010, 11:25AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Tyler

I will agree that Tambo isn't entirely to blame. These "players" and "coaches" you mention though...how did they come to be here? Did Jason Strudwick band together with JF Jacques, Zack Stortini, Nik Khabibulin and the rest and decide to establish a hockey team in Edmonton under the direction of Pat Quinn (I haven't seen too much heat directed Renney's way, other than with the PK) and install Tambo as a figurehead, like the Queen? My recollection is somewhat different.

Yes, he is to blame for those players...although I see why Struds was re-signed (can't be as available and as close to his current teammates as a coach). Other than that, no argument here.

My beef with the ragging on Tambi is that the good things he has done (revamping the farm club, allowing the scouts to do the drafting work, getting something for Staios and O'Sullivan) have largely gone unnoticed, or have been written off as "easy."

I think that the guy deserves a chance to clean up Lowe's mess, and IMO the damage done by the former GM requires several years of janitorial services.

Avatar
#67 Chaz
December 23 2010, 11:46AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@freeze

Really? Ouch. Too bad. I should have known there were idiots here too. Hope they at least got spit on or something. Haha.

Avatar
#68 David S
December 23 2010, 12:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
GSC wrote:

I will agree that Tambo isn't entirely to blame. These "players" and "coaches" you mention though...how did they come to be here? Did Jason Strudwick band together with JF Jacques, Zack Stortini, Nik Khabibulin and the rest and decide to establish a hockey team in Edmonton under the direction of Pat Quinn (I haven't seen too much heat directed Renney's way, other than with the PK) and install Tambo as a figurehead, like the Queen? My recollection is somewhat different.

Yes, he is to blame for those players...although I see why Struds was re-signed (can't be as available and as close to his current teammates as a coach). Other than that, no argument here.

My beef with the ragging on Tambi is that the good things he has done (revamping the farm club, allowing the scouts to do the drafting work, getting something for Staios and O'Sullivan) have largely gone unnoticed, or have been written off as "easy."

I think that the guy deserves a chance to clean up Lowe's mess, and IMO the damage done by the former GM requires several years of janitorial services.

I think what most people fail to consider is that Tambellini IS cleaning up Lowe's mess. The fact that the team has done nothing to correct obvious deficiencies (PP, PK) is proof. We're starting to see a growing positive trend in offense, that "just happens" to be balanced off by pathetic PP and PK performance.

The result? ELPH.

IMO, the team has a very clear plan. That plan is based on losing our way to a bunch of key assets through high drafting. Just the fact that we haven't called up any D (Belle) or placed either of Horcoff or Hemsky on LTIR is further proof.

Personally, this plan makes me sick to my stomach to even think about. But it is what it is. I have little doubt both Katz and Lowe are fully on board, and it wouldn't even surprise me if it was their idea in the first place.

Avatar
#69 risto
December 23 2010, 12:22PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

The Music at Rexall. Horrible

Vancouver fans chanting Lou. In my world, being a loo=loser. Any wonder they have had a decent club for about 8 years, and no SCFinals to show for it? All of them, loos.

That being said, the music in Vancouver's arena 10x better than ours.

And I generally agree with Lowetide's grievances, and forgive him for all things Pouliot.

It would please me to see Doobs play more in 2011. I sense Toonces evaluating again........

Merry Merry to the baby Oil, the Oilers Nation and YOU!

Avatar
#70 JB
December 23 2010, 12:26PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@David S

Not that I disagree with you, but is planning to fail really a plan? The Oilers could theoretically not have a GM and have the same results. I think I'm just going to back to drinking.

Avatar
#71 Chris.
December 23 2010, 12:34PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
JB wrote:

Not that I disagree with you, but is planning to fail really a plan? The Oilers could theoretically not have a GM and have the same results. I think I'm just going to back to drinking.

No they need somebody to throw a wrench into things once and a while (you know if the team starts heating up too much)... For example: why not have the coach tell the media he expects these young guys to make the playoffs a couple of days before the team embarks on a very difficult road trip? Increased pressure always leads to increased performance levels right?

Avatar
#72 David S
December 23 2010, 12:37PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
JB wrote:

Not that I disagree with you, but is planning to fail really a plan? The Oilers could theoretically not have a GM and have the same results. I think I'm just going to back to drinking.

It can be. Think about it. What does Renney say? "Sometimes you have to give the puck up to get it back". I'd bet some serious cash that a bunch of key moves we've all been hoping for will be made this summer. You might even see some hint of this master plan leading up to the trade deadline this season.

The failing is the easy part. Anticipating the right time to turn the power back on takes some skill. Personally, after the emergence of our rookies (which as a group must be exceeding expectations), I really thought the plan would be accelerated and we might see some moves to give the team a chance to make the playoffs (a pretty decent carrot, and a damn good learning experience). But so far a big NOPE to that idea.

Avatar
#73 Darren
December 23 2010, 12:40PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@BarryS

How do the fans start to realize they are at risk to lose the team? Who tells the fan this?

The media.

Avatar
#74 TigerUnderGlass
December 23 2010, 12:50PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@GSC

...allowing the scouts to do the drafting work...

Are you suggesting that Tanmbellini be given credit for allowing his staff to do their jobs? Or that this was somehow difficult? Why do I feel a need to quote Chris Rock?

Avatar
#75 Chris.
December 23 2010, 01:22PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
TigerUnderGlass wrote:
...allowing the scouts to do the drafting work...

Are you suggesting that Tanmbellini be given credit for allowing his staff to do their jobs? Or that this was somehow difficult? Why do I feel a need to quote Chris Rock?

The bar has been set so low for so long...

Avatar
#76 madjam
December 23 2010, 01:46PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Oiler lineup now playing above expectations over last 20 games with a large part of that group playing as well as can be expected of late . Still 15th spot . but when you consider Hemsky , Horcoff injured long term , and Souray shipped to Neverland , they still look like a very competitive team getting better rapidly as season progresses . My only beef is upper management innate ability not to address long standing upgrades and voids to help our club more .

Keep your eyes on David Musil for Czechs in junior tourney - have a feeling he could be on Oilers radar and within where we might finish this season .

Tambellini a good delegator as most GM's ?

Avatar
#77 VK63
December 23 2010, 01:51PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Robin Brownlee

Agreed! It's like redundancy has some magical power of persuasion that evades those who may consider themselves sane. But I digress.

In honor of our dear friend LT I crack open a festive treat.. Glenlivet French Oak reserve. Salud!

Festivus bitches I have Tencer and Loubardious. .........Auditory trauma. I'm good thanks.

Avatar
#78 JB
December 23 2010, 02:31PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@David S

Failing is easy to be sure, and in some contexts much more fun. That said, I agree that the next offseason will be revealing in regards to the larger "plan." I suspect some minor pieces (Vandermeer, Cogs, Brule, Foster) might be in play but the big decisions (Hemsky/Penner) will be made when Tambo has more spare time for assessment. If the glaring holes that every single MSM pundit, blogger and casual fan aren't addressed in a significant fashion then all Tambo doubters (of which I'd include myself) will become unbearably obnoxious.

Avatar
#79 Dan the Man
December 23 2010, 02:36PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I'd be curious to see how much effort teams like Chicago and Pittsburg put into addressing weaknesses in their rosters while they were in the middle of rebuilds.

I'm feeling way too lazy to analyze their rosters during thoses times so I'm just going to assume that because both teams were so bad for so many years that they probably didn't do much either.

Does that make it OK for the Oilers to not address things like the PK and faceoffs?

I guess it depends whether you want a top 5 draft pick or an opportunity to squeak in to the playoffs.

Avatar
#80 Jason Gregor
December 23 2010, 03:27PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dennis wrote:

This is an interesting reply because while I think this guy or gal is way off the mark when he says I'm misinformed - they don't say of what or qualify how - I do agree with him when he says there has to be give-and-take.

The other day Gregor took a dig at me about the PK and told me I clearly wasn't watching all that clearly what was going on. OK, maybe he's right on that. But I could also say the same about his opinion that 67 should get a shot at pivot given that Brule's got a ten-cent head when it comes to looking after his own end.

I think it all should be fine unless it's personal.

So, in closing, I apologize to Gregor if he thinks it's personal because it's not.

Worrying about how Brule is in his own zone while on the PP, is a tad shortsighted. If the PP is good they won't be in their zone very often. You'd be more worried how he is skating backwards with a guy trying to beat him on the rush.

Avatar
#81 Dennis
December 23 2010, 08:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Jason Gregor wrote:

Worrying about how Brule is in his own zone while on the PP, is a tad shortsighted. If the PP is good they won't be in their zone very often. You'd be more worried how he is skating backwards with a guy trying to beat him on the rush.

I was pretty sure you said 67 should be given a shot at pivot at EV; if I'm mistaken then I apologize.

but if I wasn't then I'd say a guy who can't even clear the zone on the wing should never be allowed to play centre.

Comments are closed for this article.