UPDATE from 3-on-3 Tournament...MPS impresses and changes his name.

Jason Gregor
July 09 2010 08:06AM

COLOGNE, GERMANY - MAY 23: Ilya Kovalchuk of Russia looks dejected after losing the IIHF World Championship gold medal match between Russia and Czech Republic at Lanxess Arena on May 23, 2010 in Cologne, Germany. (Photo by Martin Rose/Bongarts/Getty Images)

I return home from the greatest fishing trip of my life (more on that in a few days) and I see that the Hall-hype is in overdrive, the Oilers still don’t have a veteran 3rd liner, Ilya Kovalchuk is still an UFA and Lebron James might have the biggest sports ego of all-time.

I’ll be at Clareview this morning watching the 3-on-3 rookie tournament and I’ll be most interested in Hall, MPS and Teemu Hartikainen. I won’t put too much stock in how they play because dominating against rookies is much different than going up against NHL veterans, but I am curious to see them live.

I’ve seen Hall on TV and his game speaks for itself, but I just want to see the hype up close and personal. MPS is the big wild card for me. So many scouts have told me they think he is ready to make the jump to the NHL and that is speed is his best asset. Hartikainen is another guy that some think is a wild card to make the squad because of his style of play; which possesses more grit and sandpaper than any of the other young prospects.

I don’t see Hartikainen making the squad, but today is the first chance to see if the kid has the potential to make the NHL in the future.

This camp isn’t about finding out who can play in the NHL, rather it will show which young guys can’t.

Veteran still needed

The Oilers were interested in Rob Niedermayer, but he took Buffalo’s offer because the Oilers didn’t make him a direct offer. Normally teams will submit an offer to a guy and give him a short window to make up his mind. It came down to Buffalo making a secure offer and rather than wait for a “what-if” from the Oilers he took the sure thing. He had an offer on the board from another team but choose Buffalo.

Niedermayer would have been a good fit in Edmonton on a one-year deal. He’s won a Cup, is a great team guy and would have given them a solid 3rd line centre.

They still need to add that guy, and I haven’t got any info regarding Dominic Moore, but if I’m the Oilers I’d look at him. The only problem is he isn’t that big or physical, but he is reliable and might be the best option left, unless Steve Tambellini can add a centre via trade.

Kovalchuk still free

This is the longest a player of Ilya Kovalchuk’s status has remained on the market, but I wonder if this is good for hockey. Edmonton isn’t interested and wouldn’t have a chance if they were, but even fans here are curious to see where he will end up. The rumours and possible scenarios is keeping hockey in the conversation in places where normally they wouldn’t get a sniff. It’s not a hype-crazed machine or anything, but I think it is good to see a guy like him float around for longer than six hours on July 1st.

Let me be clear and say a little speculation is good, but thankfully NHL players aren’t like the NBA.

In what other sport would you have a guy who has won nothing hold a press conference to say where he is signing. The best part of my fishing trip was there wasn’t any TV, Internet or phone so I didn’t have to follow Lebron James’ ridiculous saga.

James is a great player and a phenomenal athlete, but after watching his press conference last night I hope to hell the Miami Heat never win a championship with him. This entire James, Dwayne Wade and third-wheel Chris Bosh saga made me sick. James has a one hour show to tell the world where he is playing, while simultaneously ripping out the heart of his home state. Classy move Mr. James, classy move.

The players and their player’s association would be crying COLLUSION if the owners ever did anything similar. The best part about this putrid scenario is that the NHL looks even better by having a solid salary cap. The soft cap of the NBA is a joke, and the JWB signing will hurt the league long-term. In 2009, 40% of the teams in the league lost money, and there has been speculation that as many as 20 teams lost money last year. I’d bet you can add Cleveland to the list of teams that will lose money next year.

MLB is a joke because normally it is the same 10 teams with a realistic shot to win. You get the odd upset but that’s it. The NBA will be the exact same. The Lakers and Heat will exceed the cap every year and they can afford it. I know the Knicks prove that overspending doesn’t guarantee a winning team, but any decent GM with a brain and an abundance of money will give his team a chance to win.

I’m a fan of the NBA, but yesterday’s ridiculous and ego-induced press conference has drastically lessened my interest. I will only watch hoping the Heat loses. And rooting for a team to lose is never as fun as rooting for an underdog or your favourite team. Being a spiteful observer isn’t as enjoyable as being a passionate fan.

And if James does win a championship or two, can you compare him to Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant? Teams were built around those guys. They didn’t have to set up summer meetings with other star players and agree to from a supposed terrific trifecta.

The NHL has a lot of warts, but today I’m glad Edmonton is an NHL city rather than an NBA city. Thankfully the NHL will never have to endure the same disgusting lunacy because of their hard salary cap.

**UPDATE AFTER 3 on 3**

MPS was the best player on the ice, followed by Jordan Eberle. It is hard to get a true evaluation of players in the format of 3-on-3 from the blueline in, but Magnus Paajarvi (he has dropped the Svensson) showed his experience and dominated at times. He was very good on the cycle and down low.

Eberle scored some nice goals, going by a D-man, cutting to the net and either roofing it upstairs, or going fivehole. Since being drafted Eberle has talked about improving his speed and he does look a bit faster, but he is much stronger than before and that is imperative if he is going to battle against NHL defenceman.

Jeff Petry is bigger than I expected and he also stood out. He will need some seasoning in the AHL and getting used to playing 80 games, but I think he has better upside than Taylor Chorney.

Martin Marincin really impressed me. He uses his stick incredibly well down low and his raw talent jumps out at you. Once he fills in a bit this kid might be a steal for the Oilers. He moves well for a big man and coming to the WHL should help him get used to the North American game.

Teemu Hartikainen didn't do much for me, but this 3-on-3 concept isn't the best format to judge guys. He skates okay, but at times he looked frustrated.

Anton Lander could easily play in the AHL and I think after one more year in Sweden he could make the jump to the Oilers. He is very poised and seems mature beyond his years. He thinks the game incredibly well, especially in his own zone. I really like his game. But it is his leadership that might be his best quality. When I asked Paajarvi about him he couldn't stop raving about what a great guy he was. It almost seemed like Paajarvi looked up to him and they are the same age.

Cameron Abney has really improved his skating. He will never be a great skater or puckhandler, but he has made great strides. He is a 4th liner at best, but he has size and toughness and if he can improve his skating even more he might have a shot.

Tyler Pitlick has a great shot. He ripped a few one-timers past the goalies with ease. He is easily 6'2" and might be taller come next year. I'll be making sure I will be at Rexall when the Medicine Hat Tigers play the Oil Kings this year.

Taylor Hall was solid. He had a few moments where you really noticed his skill and speed. After the skate he said he wants to improve his balance. He feels he needs to improve his leg strength and will spend the next two months improving in both those areas.

Paajarvi was the most impressive player and I'm looking forward to seeing how he matches up against NHL players come September.

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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 Kevin
July 09 2010, 12:36PM
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There seems to be some curiosity as to who the 3rd line center will be. Thought he was signed one to that $30 million contract extention two years ago. Our 1st priority needs to be 1st line center. Thought there was one we could have Drafted but choose to add to our depth on the wing. Hmmm, does anyone see direction with this team. What we are seeing with Burke and his inability to get value back in a possible trade for Kaberle is a precursor to what we will see next year with Penner and Hemsky if these guys are'nt moved this summer. Thought we were in Re-build mode here ? Stuck with Souray too, as Tambo has been assessing his trade request for nearing 18 months. The Flames just vaulted ahead of us (Management Category)with their Future GM pick-up. We better wake up here !

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#102 terran
July 09 2010, 12:59PM
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Kevin wrote:

There seems to be some curiosity as to who the 3rd line center will be. Thought he was signed one to that $30 million contract extention two years ago. Our 1st priority needs to be 1st line center. Thought there was one we could have Drafted but choose to add to our depth on the wing. Hmmm, does anyone see direction with this team. What we are seeing with Burke and his inability to get value back in a possible trade for Kaberle is a precursor to what we will see next year with Penner and Hemsky if these guys are'nt moved this summer. Thought we were in Re-build mode here ? Stuck with Souray too, as Tambo has been assessing his trade request for nearing 18 months. The Flames just vaulted ahead of us (Management Category)with their Future GM pick-up. We better wake up here !

You're not supposed to drink the bong water there Kev...

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#103 roughneck
July 09 2010, 01:05PM
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Given the prevailing sentiment about another black athlete flying the same corporate flag, the fact that Nike took no part in the hype that was "the decision" spoke volumes.

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#104 Doughboy
July 09 2010, 01:05PM
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Kevin wrote:

There seems to be some curiosity as to who the 3rd line center will be. Thought he was signed one to that $30 million contract extention two years ago. Our 1st priority needs to be 1st line center. Thought there was one we could have Drafted but choose to add to our depth on the wing. Hmmm, does anyone see direction with this team. What we are seeing with Burke and his inability to get value back in a possible trade for Kaberle is a precursor to what we will see next year with Penner and Hemsky if these guys are'nt moved this summer. Thought we were in Re-build mode here ? Stuck with Souray too, as Tambo has been assessing his trade request for nearing 18 months. The Flames just vaulted ahead of us (Management Category)with their Future GM pick-up. We better wake up here !

Barring severe injury or extremely sub-par seasons in 2010-11, both Hemsky and Penner remain moveable. Hemmer especially so, as his contract delivers a rare skill-set at good value. I could easily see Hemsky being moved at the trade deadline to a team hoping to push themselves over the top.

Not that I've observed much interest in Hemsky from either, or that either team has tonnes of cap space, but rosters LIKE those for the Bruins or Pens might look to put some zip on the wing before their next cup run (Pens certainly showed precedent in signing Hossa).

Whoevers asking, Hemmer represents instant secondary scoring at a good price.

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#105 Spence.
July 09 2010, 01:06PM
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@ Gregor...

I agree that the media circus and the 1 hour show was a little much...however, it generated a ton of publicity (good or bad) and also raised $2.5M to the Boys & Girls Clubs of America.

I disagree with you when you said that Kobe Bryant had his team built around him. If you remember, Kobe never won until Shaq came to LA. After Shaq left the Lakers started losing...it took a trade to bring Pau Gasol and some clever drafting to get a title back to LA. Name me any other player that LBJ has ever had who has remotely come close to Pau Gasol or another 'wingman'

IMO I think its cool how 3 guys in their prime are surrending salary to win and have a chance to play together.

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#106 Crash
July 09 2010, 01:11PM
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Doughboy wrote:

Barring severe injury or extremely sub-par seasons in 2010-11, both Hemsky and Penner remain moveable. Hemmer especially so, as his contract delivers a rare skill-set at good value. I could easily see Hemsky being moved at the trade deadline to a team hoping to push themselves over the top.

Not that I've observed much interest in Hemsky from either, or that either team has tonnes of cap space, but rosters LIKE those for the Bruins or Pens might look to put some zip on the wing before their next cup run (Pens certainly showed precedent in signing Hossa).

Whoevers asking, Hemmer represents instant secondary scoring at a good price.

We could use a guy like Hemmer...oh wait, yah we already have him..

I think signing him to an extension beats what we can get for him in a trade...

At age 26 he'll fit into the rebuild just fine...

Why is everyone so quick to want to trade Hemsky? Yet no one mentions unloading Whitney or Gilbert who are both older and are only signed one extra year?

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#107 Ball Buster
July 09 2010, 01:14PM
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Unrelated . . .

From TSN:

The San Jose Sharks have signed Blackhawks restricted free agent defenceman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a free agent offer sheet, signing the defenceman to a four-year, $14 million dollar contract.

Chicago has seven days to match the offer. If the team does not match it, they will receive San Jose's first and third round picks in the 2011 NHL entry draft.

If Chicago matches, I hope that closes all other avenues for the Sharks and they come asking about Souray.

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#108 common sense
July 09 2010, 01:19PM
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How can anyone blame Lebron. He fulfilled 7 years in Cleveland with minimal supporting cast given by his owner and his GM. If you're gonna blame him than you gotta blame the Celtics trio of Pierce, Allen and Garnett as well. What about the fantastic duo of Paul Kariya and Selanne who wanted to win a cup with Sakic. Lebron wasn't the first and he won't be the last to do this sort of thing. This is the kind of world we live in. Primadonna athletes and media personalities who live by their own rules. Loyalty to team and locality are traits of a bygone era.

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#109 Spence.
July 09 2010, 01:21PM
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absolutely agree

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#110 Ender
July 09 2010, 01:29PM
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Peter Griffin wrote:

Isn't "Oil Change" the same thing. Bringing up the hype.

When a team produces a program like that, it's Marketing. When a player does it, it's egotistical.

That may sound hypocritical, but in my opinion a professional athlete isn't a 'brand'. I know that superstars in music, film, TV, and sports all have agents that try to cultivate the 'brand' of their particular client, but when something like 'The Decision' is produced, I think it looks less like publicity and more like posturing. Thousands of high-profile athletes and other celebrities signed contracts last year and didn't need a TV special to let us know about it.

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#111 Ducey
July 09 2010, 01:29PM
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@Doughboy

I agree. Hemsky's value is low now as he missed most of last year. It should be considerably higher at the deadline. Not only will he had a chance to re establish his value, but GM's tend to act more with a short term view then. They balance the value draft picks and prospects against the chance for a Cup.

Don't know what Penner will need to do to increase his value. It seems he wasn't worth a top 5 first rounder at the draft but he would likely net a later first rounder at the deadline.

Of course the Oilers may not see the immediate development of their youngsters and may just hang onto Penner and Hemsky for another year.

Or they may not trade them at all. All of the prospects will be doing very well to be as good as Hemsky and Penner.

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#112 Westcoastoil
July 09 2010, 01:31PM
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Ball Buster wrote:

Unrelated . . .

From TSN:

The San Jose Sharks have signed Blackhawks restricted free agent defenceman Niklas Hjalmarsson to a free agent offer sheet, signing the defenceman to a four-year, $14 million dollar contract.

Chicago has seven days to match the offer. If the team does not match it, they will receive San Jose's first and third round picks in the 2011 NHL entry draft.

If Chicago matches, I hope that closes all other avenues for the Sharks and they come asking about Souray.

Vancouver has too many D right now and will further narrow our ability to move Souray. Hamhuis, Ballard, Salo (NTC), Ehrhoff & O'Brien aren't moving so that leaves Bieksa and Edler as trade possibilities. Would you rather have Bieksa at $3.5, Edler $3.25 or Souray at $5.4.

The only plus side is that they'll be looking for a winger back and not a centre.

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#113 Team Hall
July 09 2010, 01:36PM
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Personally, I've never understood why people enjoy watching the NBA anyways. Boring, shoot score rebound, shoot rebound score, over and over a hundred times. Also, if you are tall, you are automatically good. Brutal game. And then you have these egomaniac babies playing it, like Kobe, who pouts when they lose and says the team wasnt playing well, but when they win, it was all him. Honestly, no wonder hockey's following is starting to increase in the States. The US makes fun of soccer babies, but the NBA "no contact" league is just as bad for big babies.

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#114 Ducey
July 09 2010, 01:37PM
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I don't blame L.J. for moving on. I do blame him for the way he handled it.

Just make your decision, thank the people of Cleveland on the way out and get on with it. Rubbing it in the faces of all the cities that he did not choose shows a severe lack of consideration and class.

Its a black eye for him and the NBA.

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#115 Doughboy
July 09 2010, 01:37PM
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Just for the record, I hope both Hemmer and Penner remain happy, affordable, and productive Oilers. With those two especially you're just never sure where their head is at. Good young team in a snazzy new arena couldn't hurt future contract negotiations however...

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Oilers sign Marlies ex-captain Ben Ondrus. As per various twitter guys.

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#117 Spence.
July 09 2010, 01:47PM
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@Team Hall

Hall, obviously you should not be commenting on basketball...stick to hockey.

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#118 BBOil
July 09 2010, 01:51PM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

Good guy to have in OKC. Remember seeing him in the odd Marlies game or Leafs call up. Good Alberta boy with some jam, willing to mix it up.

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#119 Matt Henderson
July 09 2010, 01:52PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

Oilers sign Marlies ex-captain Ben Ondrus. As per various twitter guys.

52 career NHL games: 0G-2A-2P -20+/-

But another healthy addition to the OKC team

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@Matt Henderson

If he is signed to the NHL I'm worried, but reading up on him he seems to be a good leader who doesn't take shifts off.

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#121 Ducey
July 09 2010, 02:08PM
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I just had a frightening thought.

The recent offer sheet comes to the attention of the Oilers.

After calling Katz for approval and watching videos of the 2006 Cup run, Lowe heads down to Tambi's office, to convince him to make an offer sheet on some RFA D man and saying:

"See. Its not so bad. I was way ahead of everyone on this offer sheet stuff".

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#122 DC
July 09 2010, 02:12PM
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rossc wrote:

If taylor hall was dogging it at camp this morning its because he was guest bartending and getting plastered at Oil City last night.

Already!? Great just franking great!

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#123 Matt Henderson
July 09 2010, 02:17PM
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Tom Renney on Eberle, courtesy of Joanne Ireland:

"At the same time, we needed to do the right thing ... It could have been a tough situation for a young player to be in. In retrospect, we made the right choice because he certainly looks ready now."

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/Eberle+bigger+better/3250412/story.html#ixzz0tDaQ3w00

He's no lock to make the team but when the Head Coach describes him as "ready now", it bodes well. I'm looking forward to seeing him in training camp with the Vets.

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#124 Geoff
July 09 2010, 02:20PM
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Please keep your camping stories to yourself. This is an Oilers website, and nobody cares.

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#125 I'm a Scientist!
July 09 2010, 02:23PM
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What is stopping somebody from putting an offer sheet forward on Gagner?

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#126 I'm a Scientist!
July 09 2010, 02:25PM
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@Geoff

Please keep your complaints to yourself. This is an Oilers website and complaining is not....wait....nevermind. Without complaints 150 of these comments probably wouldn't be posted. Carry on.

By the way, going camping this weekend. SQUEE! Gonna be sweeet!

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#127 Ender
July 09 2010, 02:30PM
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Completely off-topic, but for those with a stomach for some colorful language who might also be considering buying an IPhone, this is a pretty funny clip.

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#128 yegCopywriter
July 09 2010, 02:32PM
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Geoff wrote:

Please keep your camping stories to yourself. This is an Oilers website, and nobody cares.

Nobody cares? Hmm, let's see...

#4 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Lynda Steele July 09 2010, 08:22AM “Fishing, where'd you go?”

#5 Shaun Doe July 09 2010, 08:23AM “Hey Gregor, I'm interested to hear about your fishing trip.”

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#129 captainnapalm
July 09 2010, 02:35PM
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Ryan Rishaug just tweeted that the Oilers are kicking the tires on Aaron Asham, but not offer yet.

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#130 Crash
July 09 2010, 02:38PM
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I'm a Scientist! wrote:

What is stopping somebody from putting an offer sheet forward on Gagner?

Probably the likelihood that the Oilers would match any offer as they have the cap space to match.

Or if you are one of the lower end teams in the league and go crazy with the offer you may worry that the Oilers will take your draft picks...

Either way I don't think the Oilers really have to worry about an offer sheet on Gagner as they have it covered.

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#131 Crash
July 09 2010, 02:41PM
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captainnapalm wrote:

Ryan Rishaug just tweeted that the Oilers are kicking the tires on Aaron Asham, but not offer yet.

Now this is the kind of player we need....a grind it out, in your face, stand up for your teammate at the drop of a hat kind of guy...

I'm on board with this one...To have a whole bunch of guys that can play this role is better than one.

We'd have MacIntyre, Stortini, Asham, Vandermeer, Fraser, Peckham..

I like it.....

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#132 DC
July 09 2010, 02:44PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

Oilers sign Marlies ex-captain Ben Ondrus. As per various twitter guys.

I used to work with his sister Rebecca. Don't know why I felt inclined to share this.

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#133 BBOil
July 09 2010, 02:46PM
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Crash wrote:

Now this is the kind of player we need....a grind it out, in your face, stand up for your teammate at the drop of a hat kind of guy...

I'm on board with this one...To have a whole bunch of guys that can play this role is better than one.

We'd have MacIntyre, Stortini, Asham, Vandermeer, Fraser, Peckham..

I like it.....

I like. Don't know how many wins/losses we'll have next year, but we sure aren't going to be letting other teams walk over us.

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#134 David S
July 09 2010, 02:49PM
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Geoff wrote:

Please keep your camping stories to yourself. This is an Oilers website, and nobody cares.

http://www.ceoconsultant.com/business/wp-content/uploads/2007/04/complainers-whiners-cryers.jpg

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#135 Dyckster
July 09 2010, 02:49PM
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DC wrote:

I used to work with his sister Rebecca. Don't know why I felt inclined to share this.

~Please keep your "I used to work with his sister...." to yourself, no one cares.~ JK

Bring on Asham, having said that, at what point do we have too many forwards to sift through? It's gonna end up like a fishing derby where you catch your limit early, but cull your smaller fish with bigger ones as the day progresses. I guess in the end we'll end up solid here and in OKC.

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#136 Crash
July 09 2010, 02:52PM
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BBOil wrote:

I like. Don't know how many wins/losses we'll have next year, but we sure aren't going to be letting other teams walk over us.

Exactly and maybe just maybe some of the other teams players (ie: Regehr) might back off a bit knowing that the hammer is going to come down.

This may lead to a healthier team and more room for our skill guys to operate.

With Hemmer back in the fold and the additions of MPS, Eberle and Hall along with Gagner and Brule being another year wiser this team may not be as bad as everyone thinks.

Yes it will depend on just how good those 3 new young guys are but things are looking up, IMO.

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#137 BBOil
July 09 2010, 03:05PM
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@Crash

At the same time having so many of those guys allows them to be more aggressive and go challenge other teams guys like Regehr (as per your example), who are good players, but not inclined to back down from physical challenges.

Allows our tough guys to be pro-active rather than reactive as they know their are other guys that can answer the bell if need be while their in the box. Especially if we can be taking the right guys to the box with us without taking stupid penalties.

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#138 DonDon
July 09 2010, 03:14PM
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Who is Ben Ondrus, the Oilers latest announced signing? Is this all about strengthening the AHL team?

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#139 Senator Theo
July 09 2010, 03:17PM
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@rossc

Someone told me that you were just like RossCreek, but without the reek - any truth to that?

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#140 BBOil
July 09 2010, 03:23PM
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@DonDon

Probably AHL depth and leadership, but he's made a few trips to the show and can fill in a bottom 3 or 13th forward role if need be.

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Apparently Nash is up 16 pounds to 191, not that it matters to us anymore.

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@captainnapalm

I want Asham, but what does kicking tires even mean? Gauging to see if he has interest in coming here or if he has the right attitude?

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#143 Team Hall
July 09 2010, 03:39PM
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Spence. wrote:

Hall, obviously you should not be commenting on basketball...stick to hockey.

Ya, you got me. Sorry about that. I was showing my uninformed bias. Anyways, I always worry about these prospects who are "can't miss" because of this or that. I seem to recall being a bit excited about MAP because he was big, soft hands, responsible, fast, seemed to be a good prospect. But it just didn't add up, can't figure it out. Now, I'm not saying MPS = MAP, but I'm just saying, lets be cautious and start some guys in OKC.

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#144 JackBauer
July 09 2010, 03:44PM
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What is this strange sensation I am feeling at the bottom of my stomach??? Could it be......excitement? Hmmmm...

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#145 Mike
July 09 2010, 04:08PM
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Gregor,

Thanks for the update in the article about the rookie camp. You've been saying for months that MPS was gonna be good, and I went and focused on him. He was better than expected. I totally agree with your assessment. It was only one day I know but I really liked him.

Great rundown on the other guys. I'm excited about Pitlick as well.

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#146 captainnapalm
July 09 2010, 04:31PM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

Probably. I would think he would be the type of guy who would be in high demand and frankly I'm surprised he isn't already signed elsewhere.

Unless he has interest in playing for a rebuilding team for 2-3 years, I can't see him going from the SCF to a 30th place team. He would however be a great addition to the third line.

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#147 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
July 09 2010, 04:43PM
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JackBauer wrote:

What is this strange sensation I am feeling at the bottom of my stomach??? Could it be......excitement? Hmmmm...

no. that strange sensation is the 6 $1 taco time tacos you ate for lunch rearing its ugly head.

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#148 PerryK
July 09 2010, 04:48PM
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@Traktor

"What about that big Russian Svitov that Matty was talking about. He still hasn't signed anywhere."

I can't say that I agree with the first part of your statement regarding Gagner-Horcoff-Moore, but I do see substantial merit in acquiring Svitov if he is serious about coming back to the NHL.

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#149 Bill up North
July 09 2010, 05:06PM
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Ducey wrote:

I just had a frightening thought.

The recent offer sheet comes to the attention of the Oilers.

After calling Katz for approval and watching videos of the 2006 Cup run, Lowe heads down to Tambi's office, to convince him to make an offer sheet on some RFA D man and saying:

"See. Its not so bad. I was way ahead of everyone on this offer sheet stuff".

Guess which team has had more of its RFAs signed to offer sheets than any other team in the league.

Hint: They play their home games in the Alberta capital.

The Penner offer sheet may have been the most talked about, but it was FAR from the first.

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#150 c_tux
July 09 2010, 05:17PM
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Crash wrote:

Exactly and maybe just maybe some of the other teams players (ie: Regehr) might back off a bit knowing that the hammer is going to come down.

This may lead to a healthier team and more room for our skill guys to operate.

With Hemmer back in the fold and the additions of MPS, Eberle and Hall along with Gagner and Brule being another year wiser this team may not be as bad as everyone thinks.

Yes it will depend on just how good those 3 new young guys are but things are looking up, IMO.

Unless any of the above guys can play goal at an NHL level, we're still going to be a bottom 10 team. Scoring is not the issue here as has been pointed out. If this team is to succeed again, we need a goalie who can stop the puck consistantly and guys who don't run around like headless chickens in their own end.

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