Do you see what I see, edition IX

Jason Gregor
May 17 2010 02:00PM

Canada's Eberle competes with Germany's Krueger during their international friendly ice hockey match in Hamburg

The Flyers made history over the weekend; the Habs got crushed again in game one, the Sharks didn’t have to kill a penalty but lost and Oiler fans saw a glimpse of what the future might look like.

Jordan Eberle’s four points in a 12-1 blowout over Norway had Oiler fans daydreaming about what they might see in the future. Toss in Magnus Paajarvi-Svensson, the signing of Teemu Hartikainen, Taylor Hall’s first period v. Brandon and Devan Dubnyk going to the worlds and finally there are some reasons to be a hopeful Oiler fan.

You never discount four points, but when they come against Norway you have to temper your enthusiasm. The only thing you can’t debate about Eberle is how he sees and thinks the game. The advantage he’ll have when he comes to camp next season is that he’ll play with guys who think and play the game better than any of his previous teammates. Or at least I hope he’ll be on a line with the likes of MPS, Hemsky, Penner, Gagner, Brule or Hall/Seguin. It’s too early to think about the horror of seeing him line up on the 4th line.

The one knock scouts and hockey people have against Eberle is his skating, and he knows it. He’s worked extremely hard the past two years with Steve Serdachny, the Oilers skating and skills coach, and Serdachny is confident Eberle’s skating won’t be an issue in the NHL.

“I’ve worked with lots of young guys over the years and Jordan’s work ethic and drive to improve is the highest I’ve seen. He has put in lots of extra work improving his first few steps, and he doesn’t skate as up right as he used to,” Serdachny said on my radio show last Friday.

Eberle doesn’t have to skate like Cogliano to succeed, because of his ability to get to the open areas. He has an accurate shot, and despite his size, he isn’t afraid to go into the tough areas to score. If he plays with guys who are more puck carriers and puck distributors he should be fine in the NHL.

The more I watch MPS, the more I think he might be more NHL ready than Eberle. He skates exceptionally well, has a bit of bite to his game and after playing three years in the SEL he is physically ready to handle NHL defenceman. I keep hearing the Oilers are getting closer to working out a deal to sign the 10th pick in 2009, so we should see him in Edmonton this fall.

*** It hasn’t been officially announced yet, but the Oilers prospect camp will go July 5th to 9th, and if MPS is signed, Oiler fans could see him before September. This summer’s camp should be the most watched in years. Eberle, MPS, Hartikainen, Linus Omark, Phillippe Cornet, Toni Rajala, this year’s picks and possibly Anton Lander will make it a hell of a camp.***

Scary Love

In one period Taylor Hall showed why he’s a top prospect, but also why there is some concern in how he plays.

Hall’s skills are top-notch and I love how he isn’t afraid to try things with the puck. The video isn’t the best angle of the hit, because it wasn’t from behind, but rather two guys colliding shoulder-to-shoulder.

Hall is not afraid to after any puck, and clearly he isn’t afraid of a collision, but when his own GM says he needs to be more award on the ice, you have to be a bit wary wondering if he can handle those types of hits in the NHL.

Hall’s performance at the Memorial Cup will only strengthen TEAM HALL’s reasons why the Oilers should draft him, and it is hard not to see why people like him. I’d still take Seguin, but if the Oilers take Hall it will be hard to rip that pick. The kid can play, and his passion for the game is refreshing.

DD or JDD

I wonder how much, if any, the decision of hockey Canada to bring Devan Dubnyk to the Worlds instead of Jeff Deslauriers will have on the Oilers this summer.

If the Oilers had any say -- I can’t get any confirmation that they did -- and Dubnyk was the guy they recommended then it seems obvious who is ranked #2 behind Khabibulin.

I wonder how Deslauriers felt when he heard Dubnyk was going? I can tell you he wasn’t thrilled about it, and it’s fair for him to wonder if that has any bearing on where he stands within the Oilers’ goaltending ranks.

My money is that Dubnyk will be here longer than Deslauriers. Of course, Khabibulin’s court case this summer will have an impact of whether the Oilers move JDD before training camp. If the Oilers keep both DD and JDD through training camp, the chance of them losing one for nothing would be high. I think they might move JDD at the draft, and then sign a veteran journeyman this summer. He would be one injury away from getting called up to Edmonton, and that will be an intriguing carrot that Tambellini can dangle. Would a veteran guy like Curtis Sanford or Brent Krahn be of interest to Steve Tambellini?

'Wow' is all I will say


We Are LeBron Video - Watch more Funny Videos

(Big shout out to loyal Nation reader and TEAM 1260 listener Brian for sending me that video)

After watching this video, do you applaud the city of Cleveland for pulling out all the stops to try and entice Lebron to stay, or does it look like begging? I thought it wasn’t bad, in a cheesy sort of way. Listen to the song without watching the video, and you’ll groan a bit. Carl Monday’s moustache is awesome and Mark Brown the furniture pitchman made me laugh out loud. Some days we need to not take ourselves so serious…

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#101 Quicksilver ballet
May 18 2010, 10:39AM
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Where's Roloson....did he say no?

This isn't going to look good on Messiers resume.

4th place here we come.

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#102 Matt Henderson
May 18 2010, 10:42AM
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@Quicksilver ballet

You think we make it that far?

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#103 Tracie
May 18 2010, 10:46AM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Where's Roloson....did he say no?

This isn't going to look good on Messiers resume.

4th place here we come.

Where's Roli? Where's Cam Ward? Where's Brodeur? Isn't Turco looking for a job this offseason?? Hell! What about Steve Mason??? I mean, it's just CRAP that these guys can't even show up for their country! MA Fleury, Luongo, have small excuses but all of Russia's team answered the call! Bah!

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#104 MrCondor
May 18 2010, 10:48AM
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Senator Theo wrote:

The risk I'm mosty concerned about is with Hall's head. watching him take that monster hit the other night kind of freaked me out a bit.

Agreed. Scares the hell out of me. Biggest risk in Hall without a doubt.

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#105 madjam
May 18 2010, 10:49AM
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You have to think after adding Hall or Sequin we will have plenty of offensive players to be competitive with Hemmer and Penner . What we sadly lack is up and coming backenders . Tinordi , Beukeboom and Ramage are defensive bodies well within our draft range that we can pluck off in this years draft . Gudbranson and Forbort might be harder to get without significant trades that might upset our core of players moving forward . You have to think Oilers will be moving forward with Gags and Cogs at least for one or more seasons . In no particular lines, here is my projection of next years forwards . Penner , Horcoff, Hemsky , Svensson , Hall/Sequin , Eberle , Gagner , Cogliano , Nash , Stortini , and two other 3rd or 4th liners with size,youth and toughness . I'd still like to see Moreau and Pisani stay for a year or two yet , but i'm not sure Oilers want them . Brule still a darkhorse .

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#106 kinger
May 18 2010, 10:58AM
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i don't think that the "seguin having one good year" argument is really accurate. Seguin had more than 1 ppg in his first season, sure hall had a bit more points in his first year, but while seguin is in his second year, and hall is in his third, they had the same amount of points. Seguin only needs 107 more points to outscore hall in his junior career and i think its a lock that if he goes back to junior for one more year he will score more than 107 points.

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#107 Eddie Shore
May 18 2010, 11:42AM
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@Crash

I'm not sure if I understand where your affinity for Hall comes from? Have you seen that much more of Seguin than everyone else to say with such certainty that Hall is better? There is a reason that Seguin was ranked 1 and I think I'm going to go with the scouts that have seen BOTH players play LIVE. If in the end it's determined that Hall is better, so be it.

Jenks? McRae? Really? Seguin had 43 more points than the 2nd leading scorer Jenks and 55 more points than the 3rd leading scorer McRae.

EDIT: I should clarify I have no solid opinion either way as I haven't seen enough of either to form one, I just don't think it's as cut and dry as you seem to think it is.

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#108 Matt Henderson
May 18 2010, 12:02PM
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@Eddie Shore

I just dont want the decision to be made based on the fact that one is still playing and the other isnt. It needs to be more than that.

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#109 Eddie Shore
May 18 2010, 12:13PM
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Matt Henderson wrote:

I just dont want the decision to be made based on the fact that one is still playing and the other isnt. It needs to be more than that.

I agree. That why all this Hall love floating around right now needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

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#110 Crash
May 18 2010, 12:32PM
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Eddie Shore wrote:

I'm not sure if I understand where your affinity for Hall comes from? Have you seen that much more of Seguin than everyone else to say with such certainty that Hall is better? There is a reason that Seguin was ranked 1 and I think I'm going to go with the scouts that have seen BOTH players play LIVE. If in the end it's determined that Hall is better, so be it.

Jenks? McRae? Really? Seguin had 43 more points than the 2nd leading scorer Jenks and 55 more points than the 3rd leading scorer McRae.

EDIT: I should clarify I have no solid opinion either way as I haven't seen enough of either to form one, I just don't think it's as cut and dry as you seem to think it is.

Evidence, my opinion is all based on evidence and on my own thoughts...

Maybe it's not as cut and dry as I think it is...but then again....maybe it is. Time will tell...

For the record, from what I've heard and seen Seguin is really only ranked number one by one branch of scouting...virtually every other scouting service outside of Central scouting has Hall number one..

This includes ISS, tsn and the Red Line Report...not to mention that media such as Bob MacKenzie, Doug MacLean etc. have mentioned many times now that a majority of NHL scouts have Hall ranked number one.

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#111 The Fish
May 18 2010, 12:39PM
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Does Jessie Niinimaki have a younger brother palying in Europe? Because if so, guaranteed the Oil f%$k it up and pick him.

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#112 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 18 2010, 12:47PM
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The Fish wrote:

Does Jessie Niinimaki have a younger brother palying in Europe? Because if so, guaranteed the Oil f%$k it up and pick him.

Funny and original all at once.

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#113 Matt Henderson
May 18 2010, 12:47PM
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@Crash

MacGregor will take the Best Player Available. I am 100% ready to accept whichever player he takes.

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#114 madjam
May 18 2010, 01:44PM
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Matt Henderson wrote:

I just dont want the decision to be made based on the fact that one is still playing and the other isnt. It needs to be more than that.

Hall is proven to be at the top of his class even when pushed by Sequin and the likes . It inspires him to play to even greater heights as you have witnessed him do again this during the Memorial Cup drive . Their is no reason to expect him not to star at NHL level either !! Hall will be a star at NHL level because he has the desire to do so . Sequin has not shown himself as yet, to handle that type of scrutiny in star company . He(Sequin) may pan out (iffy) but Hall definitely will. There is no indicator, or reason to expect Hall will not . Now , if Sequin had Halls resume then i'd say stick with Sequin - but he does not, so why risk going with Sequin ,an uproven performer that has yet to shine against fellow stars . The only risk here is Sequin , not Hall .

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#115 Chaz
May 18 2010, 01:59PM
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madjam wrote:

Hall is proven to be at the top of his class even when pushed by Sequin and the likes . It inspires him to play to even greater heights as you have witnessed him do again this during the Memorial Cup drive . Their is no reason to expect him not to star at NHL level either !! Hall will be a star at NHL level because he has the desire to do so . Sequin has not shown himself as yet, to handle that type of scrutiny in star company . He(Sequin) may pan out (iffy) but Hall definitely will. There is no indicator, or reason to expect Hall will not . Now , if Sequin had Halls resume then i'd say stick with Sequin - but he does not, so why risk going with Sequin ,an uproven performer that has yet to shine against fellow stars . The only risk here is Sequin , not Hall .

What about Hall's tendency to get caught with his head down? Players like that often suffer concusions. Seems risky to me.

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#116 Matt Henderson
May 18 2010, 02:02PM
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@madjam

It's impossible to say anyone will definitely pan out. Impossible. I think they both pan out. I think both have shown up with the pressure on. Seguin did it all year without a great supporting cast. His entire team was on his shoulders. Hall has definitely done it in the playoffs. They're both great OHL players. Who has a better NHL career? I have no idea. I still think Seguin, but I'm not gonna cry if the Oil take Hall.

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#117 Senator Theo
May 18 2010, 02:15PM
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@Matt Henderson

I might cry at some point if the one we pick ends up significantly worse than the other.

We're not going to know for a few years though, so I have some time to try an toughen up a bit first I guess.

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#118 Matt Henderson
May 18 2010, 02:20PM
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@Senator Theo

I'm only looking 1 month into the future. If the Oil take Hall and Seguin turns into Sakic while Hall turns into Daigle I will most definitely rage out.

But 1 month from now if the Oil take Hall I wont be upset.

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#119 Senator Theo
May 18 2010, 02:32PM
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@Matt Henderson

I'm still hoping something magical happens and we get both.

I know what Boston's GM said, but after the finish they had in the playoffs, I wonder if he's changed his tune at all.

Whatever happens, I think we're turning a corner and it will start to get easier to be an Oiler fan.

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#120 Crash
May 18 2010, 02:33PM
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Matt Henderson wrote:

MacGregor will take the Best Player Available. I am 100% ready to accept whichever player he takes.

Oh I will definitely accept whichever player the Oilers take as I will not jump the good ship Oil no matter what....I just hope it's Hall.

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#121 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
May 18 2010, 04:20PM
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Crash wrote:

Evidence, my opinion is all based on evidence and on my own thoughts...

Maybe it's not as cut and dry as I think it is...but then again....maybe it is. Time will tell...

For the record, from what I've heard and seen Seguin is really only ranked number one by one branch of scouting...virtually every other scouting service outside of Central scouting has Hall number one..

This includes ISS, tsn and the Red Line Report...not to mention that media such as Bob MacKenzie, Doug MacLean etc. have mentioned many times now that a majority of NHL scouts have Hall ranked number one.

you had me until you included doug maclean on your list....

the 1 armed midget dancing on 118ave has more credibilty than that ass clown maclean

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#122 A Bear
May 18 2010, 04:25PM
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I like how there's a video of Hall getting hit once and everyone is all of the sudden talking about his HUGE risk of injury. He has no injury history. He might get injured. But so can Anybody.

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#123 Team Hall
May 18 2010, 04:37PM
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@madjam

I agree, and am of the opinion that Hall is held to a much higher standard than Seguin.

BTW - Seguin doesn't have a "Q" in his name.

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#124 Crash
May 18 2010, 05:04PM
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cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan wrote:

you had me until you included doug maclean on your list....

the 1 armed midget dancing on 118ave has more credibilty than that ass clown maclean

Hey, I didn't say it was Doug MacLean who said it, I said it was Doug MacLean was getting that info from NHL scouts...

No matter what his credibility level is I'm sure he is at least swift enough to talk to scouts and get their take.

Or maybe he isn't :)

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#125 Senator Theo
May 18 2010, 05:18PM
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A Bear wrote:

I like how there's a video of Hall getting hit once and everyone is all of the sudden talking about his HUGE risk of injury. He has no injury history. He might get injured. But so can Anybody.

It's not one hit - check out what his GM Warren Rychel said on Gregor's show:

“I haven’t seen a player over the last three years get hit more than him, harder more than him. He doesn’t get hit a lot because he is shifty and his speed, but sometimes he gets cleaned really hard and it’s amazing he gets up. Nothing seems to bother him.

“He’s taken some big hits right back to the Ryan Wilson hit three years ago, the Pietrangelo hit last series v. Barrie; lots of guys have really cranked him. He’s in great shape and he keeps going. But he’ll have to keep his head up in the NHL where defenceman are a lot more privy to knowing when a guy has his head down than they do in junior."

If his GM is nervous, why shouldn't Oiler fans be? He got cranked again in the Hitmen game a couple of nights after the big hit that you're talking about.

This has been a concern about his his game for some time, and something the Oilers need to take seriously, even if they decide he's the BPA.

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#126 Butters
May 18 2010, 06:34PM
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Like a good many others, I am in the Hall camp. But that is my gut talking and I suspect I am not the only one.

If Sequin is the next Sakic, then that is a compelling reason to pick him. We just need the next Patrick Roy and history will write itself...

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#127 Oil_Loc8or
May 18 2010, 07:37PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

I guess upside wasn't the correct word, maybe ceilling might have been a better term.

Ceiling I'm giving Gagner close to 20 more points then his best year. That shows I see more upside . If your so impressed with him now would another 18 points at the end of the year not be better ?

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#128 Oil_Loc8or
May 18 2010, 07:47PM
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A Bear wrote:

I like how there's a video of Hall getting hit once and everyone is all of the sudden talking about his HUGE risk of injury. He has no injury history. He might get injured. But so can Anybody.

Thats because they all want a guy that hasn't played in a meaningful game yet. Don't we want someone that goes in tough areas ? Puts his body on the line to benefit the team. From what I heard Hall is over 200lbs wouldn't Seguin be more at risk hes only 180lbs? It's like the fans that probably haven't seen either player play more then a couple games, can predict who will be better down the road.

But my guess is that the Oilers take Seguin since they know better. I'd be happy with either player but if we draft one and the other is a lot better they need to get rid of the scouts!

Now I'm going to get replys about how Seguin is playing on a bad team. Can he make his line mates better ? Cause if we draft him, he will have to make our guys better

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#129 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 18 2010, 08:29PM
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Oil_Loc8or wrote:

Ceiling I'm giving Gagner close to 20 more points then his best year. That shows I see more upside . If your so impressed with him now would another 18 points at the end of the year not be better ?

The point is you are saying Gagner is a 65 point if we are lucky, while Horcoff has had 2 .9PPG+ seasons... meaning you think Gagner doesn't even have the same offensive ceiling as Horcoff.

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#130 Puritania
May 18 2010, 08:50PM
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MPS is like RossCreek said, a Gem. He was a steal at #10 and he is going to be an absolute beauty. Trading him for Jordan Staal is laughable. I wouldn't include him in the deal for Malkin everyone wants let alone Staal.

Pens fans have been saying they want Hemsky, MPS and the 1st overall pick, lol no thanks.

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#131 Oil_Loc8or
May 18 2010, 09:38PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

The point is you are saying Gagner is a 65 point if we are lucky, while Horcoff has had 2 .9PPG+ seasons... meaning you think Gagner doesn't even have the same offensive ceiling as Horcoff.

I wrote 65 points, sorry give or take 4 or 5 points. At this point Gagner is slowly getting better and his point totals will go up. I just don't see him getting more then 20 more points anytime soon. I would compare him with Daymond Langkow. Have a couple good seasons but on average a 60-65 point guy.

Horcoff was playing with better players in those two seasons then Gagner has in his short stint with the Oil. I'm not saying Horcoff is a better offensive forward but would be suprised if Gagner matched a 0.9ppg season. A center can get points by winning a faceoff back to the point or to a winger ( 2nd assist), Gagner has to work on his draws. You win the draw your on offense lose your on defense. Horcoff has a better shot also. Gagner should just mail the puck it would get there fast ( Thats a joke).

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#132 Ryan14
May 18 2010, 10:36PM
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Players adapt when they come into the NHL. Hall will learn, the easy way or the hard way, that hits in the NHL are a lot harder. Toews learned the hard way earlier this year that you gotta keep yer head up. Every player, be it 1st liner or 4th liner, is going to get lit up. That, in my opinion is not a valid reason to increase/decrease a players value.

Halls GM also says something about never before seeing someone get hit that hard and get up. that at least negates the he gets hit a lot argument. The exact quote: "..but sometimes he gets cleaned really hard and it’s amazing he gets up. Nothing seems to bother him."

A hard working, passionate, bigger forward not made of glass.. Edmonton most certainly would not draft him ;-)

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#133 RossCreekNation
May 18 2010, 10:59PM
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Just curious... if the Citizens of the Nations could choose between Taylor Hall or Matt Duchene, who would come out on top?

If only there was some way we could poll the Nation... hmm.

Btw, score 1 for Duchene.

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#134 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
May 18 2010, 11:05PM
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RossCreekNation wrote:

Just curious... if the Citizens of the Nations could choose between Taylor Hall or Matt Duchene, who would come out on top?

If only there was some way we could poll the Nation... hmm.

Btw, score 1 for Duchene.

Tough call, but I'd probably go with Hall. Duchene is great, but Hall's explosive offense, winning pedigree and drive is too much for me to pass on.

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#135 Oil_Loc8or
May 18 2010, 11:10PM
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@RossCreekNation

Good question Ross. A player that has a NHL season under his belt, played well and will improve his numbers or Hall a unproven ( NHL ) prospect. I think you go with what you know and take Duchene. They compare in stats in the OHL, minus Halls third year since Duchene only played two seasons.

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#136 grizzly
May 19 2010, 05:12PM
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"Jason,why did Seguin not make the world junior team ?? Has any number 1 draft pick not made that team in the year he is being drafted ? Big red flag for me!"

I agree.... Duchene and Staal turned out ok but they were not #1 OVERALL. Please don't blow this Oil.

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