GDB 46.0: IS GROWTH MORE IMPORTANT THAN WINS?

Jason Gregor
January 20 2011 12:56PM

It looks like Ales Hemsky won't be going to the NHL All-Star game again due to an injury. Hemsky is on the shelf with a concussion and likely won't be going to Carolina or partaking in the first All Star draft next Friday.The revolving door to the Oilers' infirmary just keeps on spinning, as Hemsky enters on the right side of the medicinal carousel, Shawn Horcoff is coming out the left side and will replace Hemsky on the roster.

The bigger questions should be, who replaces Hemsky on the right wing, and where does Horcoff play? Obviously he will play in the middle, but which line should he play on?

With Jordan Eberle likely a few days away from returning and Gilbert Brule still out with a mysterious illness, the only options would be to move Ryan Jones up to the top-six, or move Taylor Hall back to LW and slide Dustin Penner to the right side again.

Horcoff will be one of your top-three centres, so Andrew Cogliano would get bumped down to the fourth line and Colin Fraser would move upstairs, or possibly to the wing on the fourth line. You could move Cogliano to the wing for a few games to see if he can play there, even though he has played much better the past ten games, scoring three goals and seven points, but I'd keep him in the middle.

The Oilers are in 29th place and the playoffs were a pipe dream months ago, so why not use the final 37 games to find out what works, and specifically if Hall can play centre. The most glaring weakness on the Oilers is that they don't have a true number one centre. So find out if Hall can be that guy. He hasn't looked out of place in his five games at centre, so why not let him get more comfortable and see how it goes?

"We have a lot of hockey left," said  Tom Renney. "He hasn't seen his last games as a centreman, so we'll experiment with some things, but we want to make sure we give ourselves a chance to win too. There are ways and means to get Taylor in there, and what I'm going to look at now in the next few games is evaluate his stint at centre against how he is as a winger again and formulate an opinion if he is that flexible, or if I really like him at centre."

TOUGH SPOT FOR COACH TOM?

Renney is in a tough spot. He knows this is a rebuilding year, but it must be difficult for a coach to feel completely secure in their job when you are rebuilding. More often than not, when the rebuild is over that coach is not around to reap the rewards so rarely do coaches have the luxury of looking two or even one year down the road. And no coach can give off the impression to his players that he is looking ahead to next year, and not ice a team that they think gives them the best chance to win. Players want to win, they don't care about what the team will look like in two years, so it's a balancing act for Renney.

I asked Renney about that slippery slope.

"It is a tough for a coach that isn't confident and doesn't have the big picture in the forefront. That's how I am. We have to look longterm here, and my contribution, for however long it is, will certainly have an eye on that. I think that is one of the reasons why I'm here doing this, because that has been my motive since I've coached; to develop with an eye to the future."

I give Renney a lot of credit for understanding where the organization is, and realizing, that while the players want to win, his main purpose has to be in developing the kids and making them better players. That being said, I wonder how bad it would look if he had kept Hall at centre tonight?

How would the optics be if Jones played in the top two lines, and Horcoff centred your third line? Probably not great, but since Horcoff is coming off a knee injury, couldn't you bring him along slowly for a game or two?

If Horcoff gets pissed off, what is he going to do?

Pull a Souray and speak out? Demand a trade? No chance. He must understand that he isn't going anywhere due to the length and amount of his salary, and if he wants to win in the future, he should realize the main focus in the final 37 games should be figuring out what position is best for Hall.

If Hemsky hadn't been injured I wonder if Hall would have stayed at centre? Even though Cogliano has played better recently, I'd sacrifice bumping him to the 4th line, for the sake of developing Hall. Some tough decisions need to be made during the final 37 games, and some players might not like where they stand, but the reality is that Hall is the main piece of the puzzle moving forward, and figuring where he performs the best has to be priority number one.

TRADE JONES, EXCUSE ME?

I've read and heard a lot lately that the Oilers should trade Jones now, because his value is at an all-time high, even JW commented that Jones' production is misleading.

"Personally, I’d be looking to move a bunch of spare parts. I’d start with Ryan Jones: he’s got 10 goals, 15.9 shooting percentage, ugly scoring chance and underlying numbers, so I’d suggest it’s time to sell high. I believe he’s a fourth-liner, but that others will think much more of him and pay accordingly," wrote Willis.

I wasn't the biggest Jones fan at the start of the year, but in a season where most guys have underachieved, I think Jones is one of the few guys who has played well, and really hasn't overachieved like many think.

Jones has ten goals, on 63 shots, 14 points, is -3, averaging 11:49 of icetime in 45 games.

In 2009 he played 46 games and had seven goals, on 63 shots, 17 points, was +1 with 11:26 of icetime.

Last year he played 49 games (41 in NSH, 8 in EDM) and combined for eight goals, on 62 shots, 12 points, was even with 10:40 of icetime.

This year he has more goals, but fewer assists compared to 2009 the exact same amount of shots and his +/- is fairly consistent when you consider Nashville won more than Edmonton. His shooting % was 11.1 his first year, 13.0 last year and is 15.9 this year. So he is a bit higher, but if he drops to 13% next year is it really that big of a drop? His shooting % has increased, but his assists are down, so could you call that a saw off?

Jones isn't flashy, but he creates opportunities, skates well and has a knack for creating turnovers that lead to breakaways. He isn't great at finishing them, but he creates some pretty good chances. All ten of Jones' goals have come five-on-five, and he scores most of his goals from in tight. I wonder if given a few more shifts on the PP, if he would get a few more garbage goals, because he isn't shy about going to the net?

I don't think it is accurate to suggest Jones is overachieveing since his point production is pretty consistent the past three years, and if he can contribute 12-15 goals as a 4th line guy, who plays with some energy, I don't see why you would trade him. Unless you are going to get an agitator in return, I don't see anyone in the organization that is close to replacing Jones' production next year.

While it is great to think Jones could fetch a 2nd rounder in a trade, there is no guarantee that pick turns into a player, and in the meantime the Oilers have traded away a young guy (26) who through three seasons has been a decent goal scorer considering his icetime and games played.

This team needs to upgrade many areas of their game, but I don't see Jones as being a guy who has underachieved or overachieved. I think this is what you get from Jones, and what he gives Renney is a solid contributor in his bottom six.

QUICK HITS

Nikolai Khabibulin will start tonight, as Devan Dubnyk is still battling a severe chest cold/virus. Dubnyk sat in the dressing room with his pads and pants on during Tuesday's loss to Minnesota, hoping Khabibulin would stay in the game. He would have played if necessary, but said his energy level was almost zero. He is feeling better and expects to be ready to go on Sunday if Renney gives him the call.

Horcoff will centre Hall and Penner tonight, and the other three lines will remain the same. They didn't do much PP work, so it is unclear if Hall will stick with Linus Omark and Magnus Paajarvi on the man advantage. I liked how that trio moved the puck around on Tuesday, and would like to see them given some more PP time together.

The rest of the lineup is the same as last game:

Hall/Horcoff/Penner
Paajarvi/Gagner/Omark
Reddox/Cogliano/Jones
Jacques/Fraser/Stortini

Peckham/Gilbert
Petry/Smid
Foster/Chorney  

WISH UPON A STAR

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Stars are very good team. They are getting great goaltending, have a dangerous top line and their 2nd and 3rd lines have a great mix of size, skill, grit and agitation. The Stars have won seven straight on the road, and they know they didn't deserve to beat Edmonton last week. The Stars road winning streak reaches eight, while the Oilers home woes continue with a 4-2 Stars win.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Steve Ott had the Oilers spitting mad last Tuesday, and he admitted he expects them to come after him tonight. Ott and Theo Peckham will have a verbal battle all night long, and when the Stars go up 4-1 Peckham will go looking to settle the score.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:  Last game I sent out a tweet asking Oiler fans to predict when the Oilers PP streak would end. The correct pick got you into a draw for Oilers tickets. Dandaman_29 won the tickets. I credit Oiler fans for their support and patience this year, because in many other cities the rink wouldn't be full, and the TV numbers would dip.If the Stars score first, I will send out another tweet contest for my followers. If you have to sit through the games, you might as well win some tickets to witness the horror live. The answer will require more than just a lucky guess.

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
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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#1 baggedmilk
January 20 2011, 01:03PM
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In Jones we trust.

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#2 spOILer
January 20 2011, 01:03PM
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Jones skates well? Really? I mean he has decent straight ahead speed and can get to loose pucks fist, but half the time he looks like he forgot to take his skate guards off (to quote an LT poster).

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#3 OilFan
January 20 2011, 01:04PM
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Great read. My take on Jones, why trade away a player that doesn't make much ? He is a great third liner and killer on the PK.

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#4 OilFan
January 20 2011, 01:06PM
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@spOILer

Jones does what almost all other Oilers don't do.He plays his role. Solid third liner on ANY team.

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#5 spOILer
January 20 2011, 01:17PM
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Oilfan,

Seems Gregor disputes your role call (he has Jones above as a 4th liner), nor can I see how role responds to my question about calling him a good skater... But since you brought it up could you support your assertion by showing how almost all other Oilers don't play their defined role? (and I'm assuming Renney has given you those definitions, so I am very curious to say the least.)

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#6 Bob Cobb
January 20 2011, 01:18PM
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The biggest mistakes made recently by Oiler management were trading Brodziak and not resigning Glencross, I believe Jones is in the same mould as those guys minus the scoring touch, I hope they dont trade him. I would move Stortini and Jacque before I would move Jones, even if the return would be better for Jones he is a guy you can build your bottom 6 around. Thats just my opinion.

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#7 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
January 20 2011, 01:21PM
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Considering what the flu has done to this team before shouldn't Dubnyk be in a room by himself?

Why isn't Mac playing? The experiment is over? I think with Ott being the guy he is that having Mac as an insurance policy would be nice.

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#8 David S
January 20 2011, 01:22PM
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Sir Smoka Lottt wrote:

FIst!!!

FAil!!!!

Ha ha!

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#9 Ales Hallsky
January 20 2011, 01:29PM
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Peckham/Gilbert Petry/Smid Foster/Chorney

**FACEPALM**

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#10 SirFozz
January 20 2011, 01:31PM
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David S wrote:

FAil!!!!

Ha ha!

Just goes to show not everyone can fist, it takes practice to stretch your abilities that far.

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#11 Robin Brownlee
January 20 2011, 01:35PM
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The numbers say Jones is over-achieving, so it makes sense to trade him while his value is high? Maybe in EA Sports.

I don't need to whip out my slide rule to know Jones has scored goals at a better clip than I thought he would. His luck around the net this season aside, he projects like a 12-16 goal-scorer to me in a full-time role. He provides some grit and good energy. This is exactly the type of player the Oilers need in their bottom six group of forwards.

When you get somebody off waivers you're taking a chance he might be a fit. When you get lucky and that guy, Jones, fills a need, you don't say, "Oooohhh, look at that shooting percentage, it's not sustainable so let's strike while the iron is hot and see if we can suck in another GM to overpay."

You check off a box for one need filled at a decent price. You keep that player and move on to the next need, and there are many.

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#12 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
January 20 2011, 01:44PM
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Agreed 100% on Jones.

I wouldn't be resigning him because I think he can score 20, I'd be resigning him because I'm *very* confident that he can chip in 10 - 15 (all at evens), pk and play decent bottom 6 minutes.

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#13 Dyckster
January 20 2011, 01:47PM
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Ales Hallsky wrote:

Peckham/Gilbert Petry/Smid Foster/Chorney

**FACEPALM**

Why?

My guess is 3, if not 4 of these guys will be patrolling the Oiler's blue line when this team does start experiencing some success.

Compare it to sayyyyyyy:

Vandermeer/Strudwick/Foster/Smid/.... and let me know what you think.

By my eye, this is how a rebuilding defensive group should look. Replace Foster with Whitney and Smid or Chorney with Marincin and that's a pretty good looking bunch of point men.

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#14 Chaz
January 20 2011, 01:47PM
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Not to mention that trading Jones would eliminate the joy we all feel watching his mullet flap in breeze as he skates into the opposing zone chasing a dump-in. Very Smitty-esque, and one of the few things I find myself able to cheer for this year.

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#15 Dyckster
January 20 2011, 01:49PM
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I love Ryan Jones, BUT I do have a slight concern he travels the same path as a certain Mr. Brule ("breakout" year, signed to a decent contract, digress). Having said that though, I think he's worth the risk, more so than I thought Brule was.

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#16 Racki
January 20 2011, 01:50PM
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David S wrote:

FAil!!!!

Ha ha!

He smokes a lot, so reaction time isn't good. He might have been first 3 minutes before he finished typing up "FIst"

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#17 David S
January 20 2011, 01:51PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

The numbers say Jones is over-achieving, so it makes sense to trade him while his value is high? Maybe in EA Sports.

I don't need to whip out my slide rule to know Jones has scored goals at a better clip than I thought he would. His luck around the net this season aside, he projects like a 12-16 goal-scorer to me in a full-time role. He provides some grit and good energy. This is exactly the type of player the Oilers need in their bottom six group of forwards.

When you get somebody off waivers you're taking a chance he might be a fit. When you get lucky and that guy, Jones, fills a need, you don't say, "Oooohhh, look at that shooting percentage, it's not sustainable so let's strike while the iron is hot and see if we can suck in another GM to overpay."

You check off a box for one need filled at a decent price. You keep that player and move on to the next need, and there are many.

^ THIS.

Thank you.

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#18 assessing the sitch
January 20 2011, 01:52PM
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Thruth be told! Money can't buy you love.

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#19 canucknnv
January 20 2011, 01:57PM
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every time i have seen jones play he has been good to pretty good for his 3rd/4th line role. It looks like he's a good guy in the room and he genuinely wants to be an oiler. He's cheap enough and i believe he has something this team has lacked for a long time. heart. chaulk me up for extending him for 2 more at decent money.

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#20 freeze
January 20 2011, 01:58PM
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Any updates on Brule? Seems to have vanished. (just like his game.)

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#21 OilFan
January 20 2011, 02:00PM
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@spOILer

Yeah Renney gave me the definitions lol . Skates well ? Compared to you I'm guessing. He is a bright spot on the team this season and I hope he is around for teh full rebuild.

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#22 Ales Hallsky
January 20 2011, 02:11PM
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@Dyckster

The facepalm is for tonights game only. This is not a quality defense. We both know that. Dont get me wrong, Teddy is all good, Fosters head could not possibly be in the game, Gibby...Meh, The others coyld do good one day.

But for tonight.....***FACEPALM***

*Takes sip of water and wipes sweat off brow*

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#23 Dennis
January 20 2011, 02:17PM
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I don't think you move 28 just for the **** of it but if someone offers up a 2nd rounder for him?

Then **** and yes.

I do agree with playing 4 at pivot for the rest of the season, though. Oilers are gonna draft high again so it would be nice to see if already might have a bigtime pivot in-house before we go to the table in June.

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#24 D-Man
January 20 2011, 02:19PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

The numbers say Jones is over-achieving, so it makes sense to trade him while his value is high? Maybe in EA Sports.

I don't need to whip out my slide rule to know Jones has scored goals at a better clip than I thought he would. His luck around the net this season aside, he projects like a 12-16 goal-scorer to me in a full-time role. He provides some grit and good energy. This is exactly the type of player the Oilers need in their bottom six group of forwards.

When you get somebody off waivers you're taking a chance he might be a fit. When you get lucky and that guy, Jones, fills a need, you don't say, "Oooohhh, look at that shooting percentage, it's not sustainable so let's strike while the iron is hot and see if we can suck in another GM to overpay."

You check off a box for one need filled at a decent price. You keep that player and move on to the next need, and there are many.

The only caveat would be how much would you sign him for? To me, as valuable as he is - would he be worth more than $1.5 million/year? His $975,000/year demands a raise, but at what cost?

Trade him? No... But cut him loose if he asks for more than $1.5 million.

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#25 Horcsky
January 20 2011, 02:19PM
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I admit JW had me wondering about Jones after the whole 3:1 shots again/shots for ratio that Jones boasts, but after hearing the other side I'd guess that if we could acquire some better players and force Jones down the depth chart a bit, we'd still get similiar contributions from him. Also, with better players on his line, and weaker opposition, that 3:1 shot ratio would probably start to look better.

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#26 Dyckster
January 20 2011, 02:20PM
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Ales Hallsky wrote:

The facepalm is for tonights game only. This is not a quality defense. We both know that. Dont get me wrong, Teddy is all good, Fosters head could not possibly be in the game, Gibby...Meh, The others coyld do good one day.

But for tonight.....***FACEPALM***

*Takes sip of water and wipes sweat off brow*

Totally agree tonight's 6 defenders as a group leave a whole lot to be desired, but being a begrudged fan of a "rebuild" I find myself looking for positives.

Petry has been surprisingly great, Peckham great, Chorney much improved, Gilbert is here to stay til his contract expires (he's not so bad mind you). So really only 2 of the 6 make me cringe.

As a snapshot in time though, ya it's a little troublesome.

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#27 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
January 20 2011, 02:21PM
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D-Man wrote:

The only caveat would be how much would you sign him for? To me, as valuable as he is - would he be worth more than $1.5 million/year? His $975,000/year demands a raise, but at what cost?

Trade him? No... But cut him loose if he asks for more than $1.5 million.

I have to agree with this.

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#28 Fingort
January 20 2011, 02:21PM
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Sounds like an entirely reasonable assessment, Brownlee. It seems as though Mr. Tambellini needs to look at his roster, take notice that there are open boxes for a 3rd line centre, at least 3 additional defenseman that can play top 4 minutes, and, perhaps,1 or 2 players for the 4th line including a centreman that can PK. Next, he needs to stop evaluating how badly some of his small forwards are playing, and come up with a plan to fill these open boxes.

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#29 VMR
January 20 2011, 02:25PM
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Jones is a UFA so all we're trading away is the next few months of meaningless hockey. If they want to resign him in the offseason they have as much chance to do that after he's traded as they do if he's still with the team after the deadline.

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#30 OilLeak
January 20 2011, 02:27PM
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Jones scores 10 goals and everybody falls in love with him. Ryan Jones is not a 3rd liner on a good team. Jones' shooting percentage is not sustainable, his skating ability is not great(who spends more time falling to ice then Jones?), and he doesn't move the play effectively down the ice.

I like Jones as he seems to have a great personality and likes to work in the dirty areas, but let's not prop him up to be more of a player than he really is.

Sell High!!!

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#31 victorious secret
January 20 2011, 02:28PM
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I agree with most posters that Jones plays his role quite well. His work-hard, grinding efforts are exactly what is needed on a team lacking that side of the game. I wonder if Jones' play - though admittedly he does not fight as frequently - has made others expendable (Stortini, Jacques).

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#32 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
January 20 2011, 02:29PM
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Also of note, if Reddox doesn't play 16 more games he is a free agent this year.

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#33 John Chambers
January 20 2011, 02:31PM
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I'd like to see Paajarvi and Omark given more time on the PP. Seeing as how it's all about development now, putting our young guys in a position to taste success is what we're playing the final 37 games for.

If we can have 3 or 4 games like the one against Columbus down the stretch ... I'll be smiling all summer.

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#34 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
January 20 2011, 02:32PM
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OilLeak wrote:

Jones scores 10 goals and everybody falls in love with him. Ryan Jones is not a 3rd liner on a good team. Jones' shooting percentage is not sustainable, his skating ability is not great(who spends more time falling to ice then Jones?), and he doesn't move the play effectively down the ice.

I like Jones as he seems to have a great personality and likes to work in the dirty areas, but let's not prop him up to be more of a player than he really is.

Sell High!!!

Lucky for us we aren't a good team, we are a horrible team. Letting guys go because they wouldn't make a good team is acceptable, but you better have some better options. As it stands now we probably have to sign 3-4 guys to bump Jones off this team.

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#35 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
January 20 2011, 02:33PM
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D-Man wrote:

The only caveat would be how much would you sign him for? To me, as valuable as he is - would he be worth more than $1.5 million/year? His $975,000/year demands a raise, but at what cost?

Trade him? No... But cut him loose if he asks for more than $1.5 million.

Considering how much cap space we have, how much they give him is almost irrelavant as long as it's a short term deal.

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#36 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
January 20 2011, 02:37PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Considering how much cap space we have, how much they give him is almost irrelavant as long as it's a short term deal.

I disagree, we can't start over paying guys simply because we have cap space. It will trickle down throughout our lineup and end up biting us in the butt.

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#37 D-Man
January 20 2011, 02:38PM
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OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Considering how much cap space we have, how much they give him is almost irrelavant as long as it's a short term deal.

Cap space is an EXTREMELY valuable commodity... Would you give him a one year deal at $2.0 mil? I hope not... If the price tag is over $1.5 million, his deal can't be any longer than 2 years. Unless you're 100% sure that you're trading either Hemsky or Penner - you need to keep as much space possible. The kids are all up for resigning for the 2013-14 season. We obviously need to keep all three for our long term plans.

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#38 Raine Snow
January 20 2011, 02:39PM
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Jones age fits the rebuild. He appears he could be a game breaker, a player who can rise to the occasion. You need those guys in the line up come playoff time, even if that is a year or two down the road.

If we trade Jones or let him walk it's going to be another Glencross like bitch fest coming from the fans. We then continue down the same path of having a poor 3rd and 4th line.

I for one am getting sick of the Oilers just spinning wheels and not filling the holes. If Ryan Jones isn't here next training camp then we have another hole that won't get filled.

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#39 Ethan Kortbeek
January 20 2011, 02:47PM
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@Robin Brownlee

Brownlee, I just feel like I should let you know that NHL 11 (EA Sports) is amazing. I am a legendary GM. I mean if I can make a package trade of bangers and mash for a first line player, I figure Tambi could as well.

I'm an all star. But I do agree with your points about Jones. He is a beaut, and puts in a consistent effort, as Gregor pointed out in the article.

I just don't see the oilers picking up another Jones in the off-season, not without over paying like we always have to. He's a keeper.

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#40 VMR
January 20 2011, 02:52PM
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@Ethan Kortbeek

Trading him doesnt prevent the possibility of keeping him. He's a UFA this summer trade him and sign him back if they really want him but $1.5 is way to high for him.

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#41 Dyckster
January 20 2011, 03:00PM
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VMR wrote:

Trading him doesnt prevent the possibility of keeping him. He's a UFA this summer trade him and sign him back if they really want him but $1.5 is way to high for him.

This type of "let 'em go and sign them again in the offseason" scenario VERY rarely happens.

I understand the rationale of trying to trade and asset for an asset, then gaining the original asset back, hence you've gotten something for nothing.....

However, if the Oiler's braintrust like Jones as much as most of us seem to, I don't think it's a risk worth taking.

Also, on what rationale are you suggesting $1.5 mill is too high?

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#42 David S
January 20 2011, 03:03PM
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D-Man wrote:

Cap space is an EXTREMELY valuable commodity... Would you give him a one year deal at $2.0 mil? I hope not... If the price tag is over $1.5 million, his deal can't be any longer than 2 years. Unless you're 100% sure that you're trading either Hemsky or Penner - you need to keep as much space possible. The kids are all up for resigning for the 2013-14 season. We obviously need to keep all three for our long term plans.

Guys. This is Ryan Jones we're talking about here, not Ovechkin's little brother. If he gets $975K right now, my guess is a few hundred thousand more is all he'll ever get. While he seems to be performing at (or slightly above) historical averages, its not like he's on pace for a 50 point season or anything. He's a decent find and the sort of player you re-sign at a reasonable price because he fills a hole in the bottom six.

I think alot of people forget he's 3rd/4th liner performing "OK" on a basement NHL team. In the greater scheme of things, he's not really that good. Even if we had to overpay for him, what would that amount to in league dollars? Maybe $200K? BFD.

It seems that Oilers fans' evaluation of players is being tainted by the fact they are comparing guys like Jones amongst a really weak group who wouldn't get you anything from any other team in the league. So by that comparison, Jones seems valuable. In the league as a whole? Not so much.

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#43 Pajamah
January 20 2011, 03:21PM
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Glencross Stoll Greene Brodziak

Who are?.........

Players we traded/let walk who filled an enormous need on the team

Regardless if Jones is being put on a pedestal or not, he does what he is here to do, and would still be a serviceable guy when we're ready to win. Infact, he may even score 14 goals in the soon-to-be cinderella 12-13 Stanley Cup run.

Trade him.......F&*k off

~Why do we keep letting good role players go, when we can replace them with Fraser, Foster, and Vandermeer?~

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#44 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
January 20 2011, 03:23PM
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D-Man wrote:

Cap space is an EXTREMELY valuable commodity... Would you give him a one year deal at $2.0 mil? I hope not... If the price tag is over $1.5 million, his deal can't be any longer than 2 years. Unless you're 100% sure that you're trading either Hemsky or Penner - you need to keep as much space possible. The kids are all up for resigning for the 2013-14 season. We obviously need to keep all three for our long term plans.

And I'll counter with: Unsued cap space is completely worthless.

We have 10 million in cap space this year, as of right now anyways we've recieved 0 benifit from him.

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#45 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
January 20 2011, 03:24PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

I disagree, we can't start over paying guys simply because we have cap space. It will trickle down throughout our lineup and end up biting us in the butt.

Don't buy it. Drury and Brier have the highest cap hits on their respective teams, doesn't seem to have had any effect.

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#46 VMR
January 20 2011, 03:25PM
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Dyckster wrote:

This type of "let 'em go and sign them again in the offseason" scenario VERY rarely happens.

I understand the rationale of trying to trade and asset for an asset, then gaining the original asset back, hence you've gotten something for nothing.....

However, if the Oiler's braintrust like Jones as much as most of us seem to, I don't think it's a risk worth taking.

Also, on what rationale are you suggesting $1.5 mill is too high?

If he doesnt come back it isnt that big of a loss and if he wont sign an extension now chances are we lose him anyway.

Glencross left for 1.3 to Calgary. Jones isnt as good as Glencross. I cant imagine him getting north of $1.3 anywhere else in the league if he does we have prospects who we can work in to the 3rd line. Hamilton, Pitlick, Martindale, Lander, Vandevelde, Omarra, etc. He has some energy and has put up some points but he hasnt shown that he's good defensively or helps move the puck out of our zone into the opponents.

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#47 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
January 20 2011, 03:26PM
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David S wrote:

Guys. This is Ryan Jones we're talking about here, not Ovechkin's little brother. If he gets $975K right now, my guess is a few hundred thousand more is all he'll ever get. While he seems to be performing at (or slightly above) historical averages, its not like he's on pace for a 50 point season or anything. He's a decent find and the sort of player you re-sign at a reasonable price because he fills a hole in the bottom six.

I think alot of people forget he's 3rd/4th liner performing "OK" on a basement NHL team. In the greater scheme of things, he's not really that good. Even if we had to overpay for him, what would that amount to in league dollars? Maybe $200K? BFD.

It seems that Oilers fans' evaluation of players is being tainted by the fact they are comparing guys like Jones amongst a really weak group who wouldn't get you anything from any other team in the league. So by that comparison, Jones seems valuable. In the league as a whole? Not so much.

Exactly

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#48 john
January 20 2011, 03:29PM
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Glencross is 10-7-17 +1 13.2%SP 49PIM in 44GP @ $1.2M

Brodziak is 9-9-18 +3 30PIM 13.4%SP in 47GP @ $1.15M

Jones is 10-4-14 -3 15PIM 15.9%SP in 45GP @$.975M

I don't see how he's played himself to $1.5M/season.

Offer him Brodziak-type money over 2 years now; if he doesn't sign, he's not bought into the system/rebuild, so see what he can fetch at the deadline. My guess is Calgary will be shopping Glencross at the same time, so you can't expect to get much for Jones.

All 3 are useful on the right team in the right role and in the right position. But none of them have any "sell high" factor.

Even if Jones walks at the end of the season and the Oilers get nothing in return, he's served a purpose and no side should be disappointed. Jones doesn't play big, The Ginger could slide into his slot for the coming season minimum IMO.

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#49 common sense
January 20 2011, 03:35PM
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Jones' situation reminds a little of Glencross. Glencross blossomed in Edmonton and in hindsight KLO should've paid the small incremental increase in salary to keep him instead of lowballing him. I think I would offer his agent a decent 2 to 3 year contract at 1.2 to 1.4 mil/yr and if they reject that then I would try hard to trade him.

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#50 Ales Hallsky
January 20 2011, 03:41PM
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Seriously!!! JONES??? Thats whats got the nations panties up in a bunch. Oh my. There is about a hundred of Jones in the NHL/AHL. Sell high buy low.

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