The Lesson of the Flying Burrito's

Lowetide
August 16 2010 05:30PM

Long before the Eagles, the Flying Burrito Brothers (and others) were working on a sound that incorporated country and rock music into something special. Gram Parsons would have been rich and famous by now, but got caught up in UFO's, LSD and the Joshua Tree.

It was inevitable that someone would perfect the sound that became country rock. By the mid-to-late 1960's The Byrds had recorded a terrific album called Sweethearts of the Rodeo that included two future Burrito's (Parsons and Chris Hillman). You throw that puppy on the turntable and you're listening to country rock. Parsons and Hilllman moved on the following summer to the Flying Burrito's, a band that combined country, rock, terrific lyrics and unusual outfits in a most pleasing way. Along with country artists like Buck Owens, Bob Dylan's Nashville Skyline and the early solo work of Neil Young, the sound was out there for the Eagles by the time that band hit vinyl in early 1972. They weren't the first, or even the best, but the Eagles got all the money.--

It takes time to develop something worthwhile, and the fact is that by the time the pinnacle is reached many of the people who laid the groundwork are long gone or in reduced roles. For the Edmonton Oilers, this summer has seen a number of people sent out the door. Players, management people, scouts, and on it goes. I don't think this is a bad thing, in fact it was probably necessary based on the horrible seasons since the Stanley run.

This season will see the team introduce exceptional rookies, may see young NHL players like Sam Gagner and Gilbert Brule taking steps forward, and a healthy year from veterans like Ales Hemsky and Sheldon Souray. We can only hope for another season just like the last one from Dustin Penner.

It's the blueline and defense I'm wondering over, and doubt that I'm alone. In a very real way, Steve Tambellini has been given an opportunity to be a true team builder for these Edmonton Oilers. Some nice depth moves over this summer along with the impressive draft haul give all Oiler fans a good feeling about the future. However, in order for ST to avoid the bad things that happen when you pursure UFO'S, LSD and the Joshua Tree, the general manager needs to solve a few problems over the next 24 months:

  1. Blue's Future: Never mind the mess at the NHL level, this team needs to uncover some future defensemen from the group that includes Jeff Petry, Alex Plante, Theo Peckham, Taylor Chorney and others. When Taylor Hall's team is ready to hit the playoffs on the dead run, who is going to be this generation's Lowe, Huddy, Gregg, Fogolin? I'm not even asking about Paul Coffey, although the Oilers might pluck one from the lottery next year if they're lucky enough to pick near the top again. Fact: Defensemen take longer to develop than forwards, and the Oilers aren't stacked at this position. Meaning they'll probably have to trade an Eberle or a MPS at some point to balance out the roster unless one or more of the kids turns into something.
  2. Goaltending: It's a mess, and the team would do well to solve this damn problem sooner than later. JDD and DD are trying to find traction at the NHL level, and I think it might be a good idea to cut bait with one and devote a lot of playing time to the other. By this time next season, Tambellini needs to find out about these two as soon as possible, because if a goaltender needs to be developed we're talking a very long time.
  3. Europe. Kenta Nilsson did the right thing by quitting after the team bought out his son (blood is thicker than Oil) and Frank Musil apparently isn't going to be driving his SAAB around looking under fjords for hockey players this year either. I sense the Oilers would rather shop close to home (WHL), which is all well and good; however, you can't just let the other 29 teams own an entire region without scouting the place. A strong European scouting staff is vital and ST should be on the hunt right away. No time like the present and all that. I'm not just talking about the amateur scouting either, the Oilers could use a Jan Hejda or two once in awhile. In fact, this might be a very strong option when searching for those defensemen and goaltenders I was talking about earlier.
  4. College free agents and overage juniors. Brian Burke has done a nice job acquiring some depth in the organization using this method of procurement, and the Oilers seemed to have been bullied out of the race in recent years. There's talent there.
  5. Attracting NHL free agents. The Oilers will one day be a franchise on the rise, rich with talented youth. Veterans will come here, and the Oilers should do everything they can to ensure those veterans look upon Edmonton as a quality option. Good coaching, good practice facilities, and a brand new building that is nothing less than state of the art.

Steve Tambellini has an excellent opportunity here. This summer he's improved the team (although I don't think he went far enough, or hasn't yet) and the procurement department delivered at least two bullets at the draft (Hall, Pitlick). And yet there's still a feeling that the organization is burning daylight, perhaps not making enough progress in important areas (like defense). Steve Tambellini is a long way from the finish line, and tomorrow is not promised to him. Plenty of good hockey men have given years of their lives to an organization only to be replaced just before glory arrives.

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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.
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#1 third string plumber
August 16 2010, 05:37PM
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Fist?

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#2 Dew South
August 16 2010, 05:38PM
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FIST

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#3 DSF
August 16 2010, 05:45PM
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LT.

It's very rare that the man who starts a rebuild is around to finish it and, in any case, ST hasn't even cleared all the underbrush from the acreage yet. (see Souray, JFJ, Strudwick for reference)

What little he has done in replacing deadwood is clearly designed to allow him a season of "evaluating" all his young talent which, unfortunately, also burns a year off their ELC's.

Steady Steve is just too deliberate for his own good and, based on his public statements at least, is not a very good evaluator of talent.

He may have opportunity handed to him on a silver platter again at the next draft but, if he doesn't, I expect more running in place.

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#5 madjam
August 16 2010, 05:52PM
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I disagree Oilers have done any upgrade to last years roster other than rookies that might make the team . Tams and company have once again done little to improve talent of any core . In fact , i'd say they have even made more voids in core than any they attempted to solve from last season.

Why would you want to give up our youth to add to a very questionable core to begin with ? What we gave up to get this so called new core is by my estimation not as good as last seasons core . You can argue otherwise , but all of them are not exactly household names , very talented or even regulars on most of the clubs they left from . Do a simple who's replacing whom from last years core , and i am sure you'll come to same conclusion .

We gave up on our core , but lets not rush to give up on our young stars that might turn out to be decent NHL'ers , for more of these fringe players that seem all that we can still add at this point !

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#7 JayGray1980
August 16 2010, 05:58PM
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Thanks for the FBB/Parsons mention. One of my alltime fav's. Have a giant oil painting of Gram in my living, next to the Gretzky mural. If you haven't heard him, do it! I bleed copper and blue. War a Calder in Oil Country next spring. War the Calgary Flames free fall into oblivion

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#8 spOILer
August 16 2010, 06:08PM
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The issue to me LT are the contracts to Penner and Hemsky.

Without significant improvement to roster, and hence results, over the near future, what do we do about those players?

Should ST sit and hope that they will sign extensions after yet another crappy season, in which case the forward talent should be set for years to come?

Or should he launch a pre-emptive strike and somehow get that stud Dman or franchise centre?

And if you trade one of the two, what does that mean to the other?

Will signing either to an extension require significant overpay?

These are the issues hanging over The Summer of Steve III, and we have yet to see a pro-active move one way or another.

I think the plan, unspoken as it is by The Braintrust, is to suck the wazoo for one more year, in which case I hold little hope for value signings in either Penner or Hemsky's case.

Might as well trade them then?

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#9 @NateInVegas
August 16 2010, 06:29PM
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@ Lowetide,

Dale Tallon likes this article!

Never really was an Eagles guy either, Rolling Stones were great back in the day.

There's a good number of quality UFA's next summer, I'd like to see Musil "kid" this year if the Oilers aren't a lotto team.

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#10 madjam
August 16 2010, 06:36PM
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Bite the bullet and go with more rookies would be the way i'd hope they will go . Don't see how they can hope to entertain the Oilers fans another season with the core they have now . Patience is wearing awfull thin as it is now, with prospects of another less than adequate and competitive base .

Entertain us with the kids at least, not another season of snoozefests !

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#12 Crackenbury
August 16 2010, 06:56PM
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This article and the posters to it reaffirm the saying "What have you done for me lately?"

It's been a great summer for Oiler fans, but apparently not good enough. The difference in the teams roster at the end of last year to now is night and day. What 30th place team doesn't have a few holes to fill going into the next season?

I was fairly critical of ST prior to this off-season, but you need to give the guy credit for the moves since the season ended.

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#13 spOIler
August 16 2010, 07:08PM
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It is puzzling that we haven't heard anything on the European front.

Not as worrying as Gagner's contract going MIA, the dearth of PKers grunting in the trenches, or the gaping holes in our net, but brow-furrowing nonetheless.

Right now our Generals are probably fishing for 40 lb Lakies at Great Bear, a pastime that seems to persist while they're at their desks too. Fortunately, the only trophy they've managed to land is the 2010 #1 overall; a fish which jumped over the gunwhales and into their laps after ending the expedition with a horrific boat accident.

To sum it up, stand-up comic Steven Wright:

There's a fine line between fishing and just standing on the edge of a dock.

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#14 @NateInVegas
August 16 2010, 07:14PM
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The Oilers motto for 2010-11 should be "SUCK WITH STYLE"

Lose 6-5 in regulation, hope a leader emergers, and be competitive at home...

Tambellini's summer of 2010 was an overdue step in the proper direction, another 1st would be solid.

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#15 spOILer
August 16 2010, 07:42PM
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LT, I agree about the trade timing, especially in the case of Hemmer. Now would not get back the value he's certainly worth, not after missing nearly a whole season.

Penner, I fear can only regress in value, unless his commitment level has stabilized at this height. But I do think there's a reasonably good chance it has. If Hemmer and Gagner stay healthy, he could have excellent boxcars. If I was in a fantasy league, I'd be all over that action.

But I am thinking about targets already. It would be kind of nice to make a deal now for a 1st with a team that can't help but be lottery next year, like Hemsky to NYI and Penner to ATL. CAR could be bad too, but they haven't picked lottery for some time and likely want their shot.

Still, keeping both guys till Deadline Day makes sense, to buy the kids some time and experience.

I just fear we're going to get a dog's breakfast back... at that time of the year it's usually spare parts or late 1st OVs.

And if I could risk overpaying one of the two and get him to sign, I think I'd prefer Penner, as long as he's remains committed. Gagner sort of duplicates Hemsky and I think Penner would be more help to the kids. Big men who can do things, like the Mahovliches and Espositos of this world (and their Dmen counterparts) are so-so handy when you have skill and seemingly more rare.

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#17 Harlie
August 16 2010, 08:11PM
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nice music analogy!!

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#18 Hemmertime
August 16 2010, 09:04PM
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I think you keep Hemsky for sure, Penner you see how his season is going or how MPS/Eberle/Hall pan out. Hemsky you can play against other teams first lines paired with Horc + something better than JFJ and they will outscore them. Put him on 2 of the 3 PP units (there will be a bunch) and he can get his PP pts playing with the kids that way. This allows us to shelter the kids a bit more.

Re-sign value: Scorers that play against the other teams top lines that do well make good money. Datsyuk and Zetterberg make 6.7 and 6.0. They have friendly long term deals with Det but are the best examples to come to mind. They are the elite version of this type of player.

With that, Hemsky is not Datsyuk, so he'd be less money - however if you factor in "Edmonton overpay" (to deal with those comments in advance) Id expect similar deal. 6 mil range, plus or minus 500k. Longer term. That is if he breaks 70-80 pts both seasons and we're decent, if he's upset I don't even consider trading him till next summer, more likely trade deadline next year, giving teams permission to talk to him about an extension to get more back.

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#19 Ducey
August 16 2010, 09:50PM
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Kenta Nilsson did the right thing by quitting after the team bought out his son (blood is thicker than Oil) and Frank Musil apparently isn't going to be driving his SAAB around looking under fjords for hockey players this year either.

One of the fellas over at Copper and Blue did a nice article a month back questioning how much Kenta really did of use for the Oilers.

It seems that much of their European procurement was based on "seeing them good" at major tourneys (World Juniors, U -18) rather than having Musil and Nilsson doing a lot of spade work. Obviously there is no way to know for sure.

I agree though, replacing these guys is essential.

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#20 Butters - Team Larsson
August 16 2010, 10:48PM
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I think ST blew the Oilers organization apart because he was finally given the green light to do so. 30th place is a pretty compelling argument to make some changes. But one summer to make them all is asking too much.

I think when the Oilers are ready to contend, Roy and Dubnyk will be their goaltenders.

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#21 9 Inches Uncut
August 16 2010, 11:08PM
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The Eagles suck!

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#22 Arby
August 16 2010, 11:13PM
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Ozark... Mountain... Daredevils. Nuf said.

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#23 speeds
August 16 2010, 11:37PM
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Crackenbury wrote:

This article and the posters to it reaffirm the saying "What have you done for me lately?"

It's been a great summer for Oiler fans, but apparently not good enough. The difference in the teams roster at the end of last year to now is night and day. What 30th place team doesn't have a few holes to fill going into the next season?

I was fairly critical of ST prior to this off-season, but you need to give the guy credit for the moves since the season ended.

I guess that depends on one's definition of great, but how can the summer, so far, be rated as "great" for the Oilers? The one thing I'll definitely grant is they haven't tied themselves to any bad, long term deals, although they arguably tried with Boogaard. They have (apparently?) addressed a couple areas of (alleged?) need, relatively cheaply, in Foster, MacIntyre, and Fraser.

I understand that no one, myself included, is/was expecting Tambellini to turn the Oilers in a President's trophy contender this year.

I guess one could well argue Hall counts. Maybe I'm playing the semantic game, but I don't really think of drafting Hall as a summer move, even if it happened in June, since it was pretty clear back in March/April that EDM was getting a top 2 pick.

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#24 Sandra Blood
August 17 2010, 01:16AM
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Now if Hemsky has fun like these highlights, imagine how happy he will be when it can happen just about everynite with Ebele or Hall, I think he would want to sign an extension and be part of it, He's entering his prime,He can cash in on a good long contract with the Oilers. Hell make him a Captain with Penner and a young gun like Hall as assitants.

hxxp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fQQIdba0ESY&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=99WhcbTsZQg&feature=related

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#25 pelhem grenville
August 17 2010, 05:28AM
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Parsons was massively influential yes LT...Mister SteveO Tambo will not at all be as influential if he gets it close to right with this new bunch... he needs to make sure this rebuild is watched over carefully like a garden, seeded properly and watered and fed with one thing in mind.Finish these next two years in respectable fashion at 27th and 25th in eleven twelve. Getta win for the #1 pick in the lottery at least one of those years and have a playoff cup run in 12/13 provided there isn't a strike or a stoppage, CBA up in 2 years? All the time, he needs to guard against Dale Talon type 'mistakes' by loading up so well. The team he left behind needed dismantling ten minutes after it won the Cup and the chances of seeing a Chi-Hawk dynasty grow are now slim and none. The Oil need to suck for a bit more time here and as a wise man once said "SUCK WITH STYLE & Lose 6-5 in regulation"

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#27 Crackenbury
August 17 2010, 07:41AM
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@speeds

You're overlooking the players and contracts he got rid of. This was a top-end salary cap team last March before the trade deadline. Today they have significantly more skill on the roster with cap space to make some moves. I'd call that a pretty good summer.

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#29 madjam
August 17 2010, 08:27AM
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Team optimism is a rookie laden lineup for this season with the sky being the limit . Team pessimism is the Oilers sticking with the feeble base they have not even made as good as last years base as yet .

We stand to be a Jeckyll or Hyde team this season depending on what type of team Oilers decide to go with . With rookies a plenty i see top of the league potential even this year . With little rookie presence i seem another season of gloom and doom , quite possibly even worse to watch than last season.

Though Tams has improved base for AHL squad , he has done little to improve the Oiler base still . Thats a concern i feel lingers in all our minds . We need more quality in our veteran base to compliment our rookie talent . To those aspirations Tams and company have not done a good enough job as yet with the main club . That will have a direct result on the progress of our youth !

So i ask you Oiler fans , which way do you want this years club to go ? I want the youth movement for upteem reasons , and i don't want to see much of what i consider a very weak veteran and AHL base players . Beyond a few obvious still good NHL players worth keeping for our base i want to see us go with more rookies than fringe players .

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#30 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
August 17 2010, 08:34AM
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Lowetide wrote:

Crackenbury: But are they really any better? That's my point. If you're going to buy out O'Sullivan and Nilsson and Moreau, then you might want to have a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing.

Maybe ST is going to have a strong back half of August, but Gagner not being signed, Souray still here, no veteran C or W and a D depth chart that has more holes than a slab of swiss cheese means there's plenty of work left to do.

This summer.

Is Souray still being here a suprise to you? There have been a lot of options available to teams. Our only hope is that there are multiple teams that wanted Kaberle and after Bieksa someone comes calling for Souray. Otherwise Souray is going to have to start the year here, play healthy, and wait until x-mas when teams start looking at adding players.

As for Gagner,there are plenty of RFA's that haven't signed yet so it's not like Tambo is alone here.

The vet is the one thing that gets me, although last year lots of vets weren't signed until later in the summer or into the fall.

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#31 ubermiguel
August 17 2010, 08:40AM
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@NateInVegas wrote:

The Oilers motto for 2010-11 should be "SUCK WITH STYLE"

Lose 6-5 in regulation, hope a leader emergers, and be competitive at home...

Tambellini's summer of 2010 was an overdue step in the proper direction, another 1st would be solid.

I support the "Suck With Style" initiative. Better than last year's "Just Plain Suck".

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#32 Grevious Angel
August 17 2010, 08:42AM
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I want a Nudie suit.

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#33 Crash
August 17 2010, 08:48AM
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Lowetide wrote:

Crackenbury: But are they really any better? That's my point. If you're going to buy out O'Sullivan and Nilsson and Moreau, then you might want to have a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing.

Maybe ST is going to have a strong back half of August, but Gagner not being signed, Souray still here, no veteran C or W and a D depth chart that has more holes than a slab of swiss cheese means there's plenty of work left to do.

This summer.

It all depends on just how good those young guys are. There's a chance the Oilers could be significantly better and if Hemsky stays healthy and the new coaching staff starts using the players properly then I think that yes they are really better. Couple that with the fact that young players usually get better each year as they develop (ie: Gagner, Cogliano, Brule) then why wouldn't there be optimism that this team is better than last year.

You mentioned that you liked the Foster signing and then you talk of a D depth chart with all these multiple holes. That remains to be seen doesn't it? I'm not sold that Souray can't contribute here. So what's wrong with a D depth chart of Whitney, Gilbert, Souray, Smid, Vandermeer, Foster, Peckham, Strudwick? With youngsters Plante, Petry and Chorney waiting in the weeds for their chance. Doesn't really look all that bad to me.

And why all this talk of needing a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing? I seem to remember a glut of kids running the show for the Oilers back in the 80's that seemed to work out alright. Gagner is also in year 4 (are you seriously concerned that the Oilers won't get Gagner signed?) and we already have veteran Shawn Horcoff as well as vets Hemsky and Penner. There is already more than enough mentoring to go around.

All that we need now is youthful exuberance and this could be a very fun season.

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#34 Rick
August 17 2010, 08:50AM
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Lowetide wrote:

Crackenbury: But are they really any better? That's my point. If you're going to buy out O'Sullivan and Nilsson and Moreau, then you might want to have a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing.

Maybe ST is going to have a strong back half of August, but Gagner not being signed, Souray still here, no veteran C or W and a D depth chart that has more holes than a slab of swiss cheese means there's plenty of work left to do.

This summer.

I don't think they are much better.

They should have more structured coaching and we all HOPE they will be healthier but after that there isn't alot to bank on.

The big difference is that they are better positioned to be better 'tomorrow' than they were this time last year.

I also think Tambellini has been getting too much credit for his work this summer. He's been better than before but not nearly good enough.

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#35 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
August 17 2010, 08:57AM
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Lowetide wrote:

Crackenbury: But are they really any better? That's my point. If you're going to buy out O'Sullivan and Nilsson and Moreau, then you might want to have a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing.

Maybe ST is going to have a strong back half of August, but Gagner not being signed, Souray still here, no veteran C or W and a D depth chart that has more holes than a slab of swiss cheese means there's plenty of work left to do.

This summer.

Exactly, I'm disapointed he let some quality two way vetrans (both forwards and defensmen) pass by.

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#36 Crackenbury
August 17 2010, 08:57AM
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Lowetide wrote:

Crackenbury: But are they really any better? That's my point. If you're going to buy out O'Sullivan and Nilsson and Moreau, then you might want to have a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing.

Maybe ST is going to have a strong back half of August, but Gagner not being signed, Souray still here, no veteran C or W and a D depth chart that has more holes than a slab of swiss cheese means there's plenty of work left to do.

This summer.

LT: Yes, I believe they are considerably better. Also, they didn't buy out POS and Nilsson and Moreau. Wasn't O'Sullivan traded to the Coyotes for Vandermeer? Didn't Columbus pick-up Moreau?

ST's top priority going into the summer was house-cleaning. He did an admirable job of it.

Haven't signed Gagner? Good, maybe this means we're not going to back up the Brinks van to every 40 point RFA player we have in the system. Squeeze him a little, he needs to play better.

Souray? C'mon, you can't be serious. An elephant couldn't move that contract. I'm curious to see what happens with him come training camp. I predicit hugs and kisses for everyone and he's back in the lineup.

Horcoff is a pretty good veteran center for one of the top 3 lines and the fourth line can be filled by a current roster player. We may see Penner make a move to center this year and we still have Gagner, Brule and Cogliano. This team doesn't need another veteran 3rd line center.

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#37 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
August 17 2010, 09:04AM
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@Crash

We have been letting the kids do their own thing for quite sometime now and no one is stepping up proving that they can be a solid bottom 6 player. Maybe it's time to try something new?

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#38 Let's Rebuild
August 17 2010, 09:14AM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Exactly, I'm disapointed he let some quality two way vetrans (both forwards and defensmen) pass by.

Who exactly did Tambellini "let pass by". Did Malholtra make a self promoting video for Tambellini and Steve, said, "No, I'll pass". I'd like to believe that Tambellini made attempts but I'm pretty sure those guys "let the oilers pass by". "You can't blame Tambellini for the choices the players made.

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#39 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
August 17 2010, 09:22AM
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@Let's Rebuild

Nidermayer is one that was mentioned he was going after, but failed. People don't realize that some players just don't want to go to a rebuilding team, they are getting older and want to win.

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#40 madjam
August 17 2010, 09:25AM
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Team OPTIMISM would solve many problems that hampered our offence last couple of seasons , and created running physically what little offensive talent we had . Run Hemsky and the kid line , while overloading on Souray on the PP, and Oilers were easy to beat .

That will not happen again this season with so much more offensive talent the rookies will provide for us this season. Expect Cogs , Brule and Gags to have banner seasons and much more freedom to operate and progress with some more decent and talented youth the opposition will have to try and contain . The focus on running those three to stop our offence will not be nearly as bad as last three seasons proved to be .

Hall should help take away the beating Hemsky has taken over last couple of seasons playing with Horcoff . Why? He drives the net , while Horcoff has not done so since his contract year ! Horcoff would be better centering our two Swedes to be honest . With an adept net driver like Hall , Hemsky will find an outlet of note to better match his skills and level that Horcoff has not provide since his contract year .

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#41 madjam
August 17 2010, 09:39AM
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With just a few weeks to go before my holidays , i wait to see just way the Oilers tend to go this season with their rookies and any significant others . Whom and how much will i put my money on this year ? If they go rookies i'll up my bet on Oilers . If not , i'll avoid them altogether and save my money . Either way , the odds on Oilers should be plentifull . With the rookies at least i would stand a fair chance at winning down the line .

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#42 Crash
August 17 2010, 09:40AM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

We have been letting the kids do their own thing for quite sometime now and no one is stepping up proving that they can be a solid bottom 6 player. Maybe it's time to try something new?

Did the Oilers not add Colin Fraser for the bottom six, Steve MacIntyre, Ryan Jones? Could one of either Brule or Horcoff not be a bottom six player? Is JFJ not a bottom six player?

I would like to see one more bottom six added myself but it doesn't necessarily have to be a veteran. I'd like to see one more in your face, drop the gloves to defend teammates at the drop of a hat kind of guy. Doesn't have to be a vet.

The rebuild is well underway with some very solid young pieces in place. One more vet is not going to make or break them.

And like someone mentioned how many decent vets are there out there that want to come to a rebuilding team anyway?

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#43 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
August 17 2010, 09:48AM
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@Crash

I'll give you Fraser and Jones, but Macintyre is strickly going to be a 3 minute man when he dresses. Jacques on most teams is in the AHL.

Fraser and Jones are still unproven and come x-mas we could find out that neither are what we thought they were.

As for getting the vets, I know they are tough but you don't just stop trying to get one. Sooner or later guys are going to have to sign. You just may not get the guy that was on top of your list.

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#44 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
August 17 2010, 09:54AM
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Let's Rebuild wrote:

Who exactly did Tambellini "let pass by". Did Malholtra make a self promoting video for Tambellini and Steve, said, "No, I'll pass". I'd like to believe that Tambellini made attempts but I'm pretty sure those guys "let the oilers pass by". "You can't blame Tambellini for the choices the players made.

Their was probably 12 - 15 guys that would have been a decent fit here and filled a role. Who knows if any of them would have signed, but I find it hard to believe that none of them would.

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#45 madjam
August 17 2010, 09:59AM
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Crash wrote:

Did the Oilers not add Colin Fraser for the bottom six, Steve MacIntyre, Ryan Jones? Could one of either Brule or Horcoff not be a bottom six player? Is JFJ not a bottom six player?

I would like to see one more bottom six added myself but it doesn't necessarily have to be a veteran. I'd like to see one more in your face, drop the gloves to defend teammates at the drop of a hat kind of guy. Doesn't have to be a vet.

The rebuild is well underway with some very solid young pieces in place. One more vet is not going to make or break them.

And like someone mentioned how many decent vets are there out there that want to come to a rebuilding team anyway?

Decent vets come with emerging young talents. Another reason to go with youth progam this season over questionable fringe talent we have to a degree more than i like it right now . Mitchell still available ? Might be a step in the right direction ? What might it take to add someone like Simmonds ?

So close , yet so far away . Time for Tams to earn his position .

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#46 speeds
August 17 2010, 10:02AM
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Crackenbury wrote:

You're overlooking the players and contracts he got rid of. This was a top-end salary cap team last March before the trade deadline. Today they have significantly more skill on the roster with cap space to make some moves. I'd call that a pretty good summer.

I give Tambellini a lot of credit for his deadline. I was kind of confused, and kind of ambivalent about the Grebeshkov deal, but I think hindsight has shown that to be a better move by Tambellini than it seemed at the time.

I still don't really get the Visnovsky move, except that they must think Whitney is a better D, or will be better in a year or two than Visnovsky.

The Staios deal was great, and I wasn't really a big fan of the Jones move, but think it makes more sense now coupled with the roster moves since.

Overall, pretty good deadline except I still don't really get the Visnovsky trade.

I understand the Nilsson buyout, I even think it's probably a good move. O'Sullivan for Vandermeer, OK, IF you're going to buy him out anyways, makes some sense. Losing Moreau to waivers is great, but more proactive management would have got rid of him much earlier.

I like the Foster signing, and Fraser trade. But there are still some other holes that could be, and haven't been, filled, at a small cost while providing depth.

I guess I agree with Rick in comment 34, that this summer has been better than the last couple, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it "great".

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#47 Crash
August 17 2010, 10:03AM
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@Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

I think you underestimate Jacques if he's healthy which is a ? If Jacques was to buy into the role I think he'd be a perfect bottom six. He skates well, is big and isn't too bad when he uses his dukes.

I also forgot to mention we have Stortini for our bottom six and like I said one of Brule or Horcoff will likely be bottom six. I'll give you that MacIntyre isn't likely to draw many minutes but when he dresses he will be using up a spot in the bottom six. I'm unsure of Jones but I think Fraser brings exactly what the Oilers need in the bottom six. I'd be surprised if he doesn't pan out.

IMO we don't need to be wasting more cap space on some Madden or Malhotra type vet. Keep the cap space, wait and see what sort of impact our young guys are going to have and then make changes if required. But being in rebuild mode does not require another middle of the road vet for the bottom six.

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#48 Master Lok
August 17 2010, 10:57AM
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Crash wrote:

It all depends on just how good those young guys are. There's a chance the Oilers could be significantly better and if Hemsky stays healthy and the new coaching staff starts using the players properly then I think that yes they are really better. Couple that with the fact that young players usually get better each year as they develop (ie: Gagner, Cogliano, Brule) then why wouldn't there be optimism that this team is better than last year.

You mentioned that you liked the Foster signing and then you talk of a D depth chart with all these multiple holes. That remains to be seen doesn't it? I'm not sold that Souray can't contribute here. So what's wrong with a D depth chart of Whitney, Gilbert, Souray, Smid, Vandermeer, Foster, Peckham, Strudwick? With youngsters Plante, Petry and Chorney waiting in the weeds for their chance. Doesn't really look all that bad to me.

And why all this talk of needing a veteran center to mentor the kids on each wing? I seem to remember a glut of kids running the show for the Oilers back in the 80's that seemed to work out alright. Gagner is also in year 4 (are you seriously concerned that the Oilers won't get Gagner signed?) and we already have veteran Shawn Horcoff as well as vets Hemsky and Penner. There is already more than enough mentoring to go around.

All that we need now is youthful exuberance and this could be a very fun season.

@Crash, Sure young players get better, but it's not a direct path (e.g. Brule, Cogliano, Brule) and there's no guarantee that they will be significantly better this year than last. And many young players make a lot of mistakes when they start, and I'm pretty sure that we'll see a lot of them.

What's wrong with that Depth Chart? Because Souray probably won't be in the lineup so take him out. Gilbert-Whitney, Smid-Foster, Vandermeer-Strudwick-Peckham. What happens when one of the top 4, say Smid or Foster gets hurt. Do you really want to see two Twin Glaciers Vandermeer or Strudwick in your top 4?

Oh good lord. Youthful exuberance doesn't excuse lousy defending, and certainly lousy penaltykilling. Name me your four pk forwards. Do you really think Gagner or Cogliano could centre Eberle, MPS and be a tower defensively?

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#49 D-Man
August 17 2010, 11:13AM
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@madjam

Although I agree with what you're saying, you're looking into next season as only next season... We need to look at where we'll be over the next three years... This year, I'd give Tams a B+ for his work on opening cap space and making room for a couple of rookies.. Some of the NHL deadweight (Jacques, Strudwick, etc) you refer to only have 1 year contracts for this year and if they don't perform won't be around next year. There will be room for Hall, Eberle and MPS this year; and next hopefully, for the Omark's, Landers and next top pick.

Unfortunately, we don't have the luxury of cutting everyone because of contract commitments (can you say Horcoff?)... This year, once Gagner and Cogliano are signed, we'll have one of the youngest lineups in the NHL. As good as that sounds, we still won't be winning more than 30 games and will be sitting in the basement (or close to it) this year.

Stanley Cup contenders are built over time and through the draft, and we only have a decent draft record for the past three years. Prenderghast is gone - so I'm hoping we won't have too many more first round busts. The club is moving in the right direction and with patience from the braintrust along with all Oiler fans - we'll be looking at a consistent playoff team in two to three years...

Here's hoping...

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#50 Crash
August 17 2010, 11:26AM
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Master Lok wrote:

@Crash, Sure young players get better, but it's not a direct path (e.g. Brule, Cogliano, Brule) and there's no guarantee that they will be significantly better this year than last. And many young players make a lot of mistakes when they start, and I'm pretty sure that we'll see a lot of them.

What's wrong with that Depth Chart? Because Souray probably won't be in the lineup so take him out. Gilbert-Whitney, Smid-Foster, Vandermeer-Strudwick-Peckham. What happens when one of the top 4, say Smid or Foster gets hurt. Do you really want to see two Twin Glaciers Vandermeer or Strudwick in your top 4?

Oh good lord. Youthful exuberance doesn't excuse lousy defending, and certainly lousy penaltykilling. Name me your four pk forwards. Do you really think Gagner or Cogliano could centre Eberle, MPS and be a tower defensively?

You're looking for guarantees? If you read my post you'll notice that I mentioned how much better the Oilers will be will depend on just how good the young guys are.

You're right there are no guarantees that Gagner, Cogliano, Brule or the team in general will be better than last year. Just as there is no guarantee they won't be.

If you're convinced that Souray won't be in the lineup then why not just wait and see what comes of his movement out or what happens after he is moved out. Why not wait and see how good Peckham or Petry or Plante or anyone else might turn out to be. What's the rush? This is a rebuild. You best get used to the idea of it.

I hope that this new coaching staff will teach and allow the young guys to learn thru their mistakes and let them play thru it rather. Will their be mistakes...you bet there will be. Let the horses run and see what happens.

You asked about the PK...why are you so worried about it? I've stated before and will again. I'd like to see the Oilers start using more of their skilled guys to kill penalties just as top teams and top coaches in the NHL do. I'd still use guys like Horcoff and Fraser to kill penalties but I'd also throw in Penner, Hemsky, Gagner, Cogliano, Brule and yes even Hall and Eberle who killed penalties for their respective junior teams. Especially when the Oilers are down a goal or two in the second half of games. What's wrong with the concept of using your most skilled guys with the most hockey sense, the best puck handling abilities and the smartest guys to kill penalties?

What have you got to lose? Let them all play in all situations. After all there's no guarantee they can't succeed.

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