Sudden Sam

Lowetide
July 19 2011 10:33AM

In the decade that began in 1997-98, no Oiler rookie approached the heights reached by Sudden Sam Gagner. Samwise. The young magician posted a big number as a teenager, and has been chasing it ever since. Is Gagner ever going to get better?

By any measure (except for the ones David Staples uses) Sam Gagner is getting better, making progess. Let's begin with the easy stuff, the boxcars:

  • Age 18 79, 13-36-49 (.620 points per game)
  • Age 19 76, 16-25-41 (.539 points per game)
  • Age 20 68, 15-26-41 (.603 points per game)
  • Age 21 68, 15-27-42 (.618 points per game)

You call that progress? Yes, yes I do. Gagner has never played on a good hockey team at the NHL level. Team wins by season were 41, 35, 27 and 25. Team GF totals per season were 235, 234, 214 and 193. So, using the brain God gave us Gagner was in on 20.8% of the offense as a rookie and 21.8% of the offense this past season.

Sam Gagner might appear to be running in place, but he is now the best offensive option at center for the Edmonton Oilers. His 5x5 points-per-60 numbers are heading in a good direction too:

  • 07-08 5x5 per 60m: 1.96
  • 08-09 5x5 per 60m: 1.69
  • 09-10 5x5 per 60m: 1.56
  • 10-11 5x5 per 60m: 1.91

RUN....IT'S MATH!!!!!

My Dad always had a saying that worked during arguments with my Mom. It went something like "if you have to work this hard to prove you're right then you're probably wrong." Not a strong argument, but it drove my Mom crazy and that was the end game (Mom and Dad were happily married btw, couples niggle away at each other. Some of us enjoy it!).

Gabriel Desjardins supplies us with a steady stream of information from year to year at behind the net. If he charged a dollar for every visit he'd own my house. I promise this won't hurt a bit, we're going to look at two measurements here that are easily explained:

CORSI REL

Let's first define Corsi:a stat for all the shots directed for and against while a player is on the ice at even strength. Includes shots, missed shots and blocked shots.

Now Corsi Rel: A players corsi rating versus the rest of his team. Calculated by subtracting the team's collective corsi rating while he's off the ice from his on-ice corsi rating. Can be used to calculate the relative corsi rating of his opponents for quality of competition purposes.

Both definitions and a very nice guide here.

  • 07-08: 0.6 (7th among Oiler F's)
  • 08-09: 6.0 (6th among Oiler F's)
  • 09-10: 10.9 (second among Oiler F's)
  • 10-11: 7.0 (tied for 4th among Oilers F's)

As you can see, Gagner has consistently been among the top 6 F's by this discipline, including last season when he played with the two rookies after Christmas. These CorsiRel numbers are very good, from beginning to end.

ZONE START/END

This measures a lot of things, not the least of which is how much does the coach trust you? During the MacT years with that young 07-09 team Shawn Horcoff didn't see many offensive zone faceoffs (as an example). Pat Quinn and Tom Renney have been less likely to play the percentages but there's still a lot to be learned from the stat. Progress would be a larger positive gap between end and start.

  • 07-08: 52.8/53.9 (+1.1)
  • 08-09: 55.4/49.7 (-5.7)
  • 09-10: 48.8/49.8 (+1.0)
  • 10-11: 50.9/53.4 (+2.5)

Overall a very positive number, with one season off the rails (Horcoff was off by 4 points this past season, as an example). The good thing about this is that the 10-11 number was posted when he was playing with two rookies (Omark and Paajarvi) and shoud bode well for the future.

There are some negatives in the Sam Gagner resume. His PP number was poor this past season, but so was Hemsky's and that guy is a ridiculous PP talent. I'm more inclined to blame the coaching/setup for the failure of the PP (same with PK by the way). His faceoff percentages are poor, and if he's going to have a career at center improvement needs to be made in the discipline.

However, with summer at its peak (it actually happened Sunday. Did you miss it?) I think it's time to put it out there: Sam Gagner is the best offensive option at center for the 11-12 Edmonton Oilers. All of Gagner, RNH, Horcoff and Belanger should post solid crooked numbers, but Gagner's age, resume and skill set suggest that it's a good bet he'll grade out as the best available centerman in offensive situations this coming season.

Should Nugent-Hopkins surpass him, it would represent an outstanding debut. Should 89 lose offensive playing time (at EVs and PP) to Horcoff and Belanger, we should consider it a major blow to Gagner's status as a top flight young player ready to emerge as a difference maker.

C2a6955161684b5e3189319acfa5ebe4
Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on TSN 1260.
Avatar
#101 knobby
July 19 2011, 12:34PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
David S wrote:

More to the point, it seems here in Edmonton most fans are addicted to "shiny object syndrome". People are falling all over themselves lauding the next high-rated 18 year-old prospect to come in and blow the doors off, but as soon as a quality NHL'er isn't putting up a PPG pace, well it's off to the trash heap with him.

Maybe you guys would be better off following the Oil Kings. Seats are cheap so you can go and actually watch games in person (something I doubt most do here). Every player is a bonafide lock for a top-tier NHL job only a couple of years away (or so their fans say anyways), and HF boards is always looking for new, young gullible posters.

Sheesh.

The oracle has spoken.

Avatar
#102 spOILer
July 19 2011, 01:00PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Ahh, yes. Semantical arguments are the best, aren't they?

Avatar
#103 spOILer
July 19 2011, 01:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Let me try that again in lieu of a delete button...

Pretty special would be Taylor Hall in my books, not Gagner.

Ahh, yes. Semantical arguments are the best, aren't they?

Avatar
#104 TigerUnderGlass
July 19 2011, 01:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Jason Gregor

***Not to be a douche, but it is complementary not complimentary. If he was the latter then he would be praising Hemsky not making him a better player. Just saying. Not being a dick.***

Thank you.

Avatar
#105 russ99
July 19 2011, 01:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Tambellini went out and got 3 good defensive forwards this offseason, so enough with the pressure that Gagner has to be a defensive forward to be successful.

Let's let the kid develop without the pressure of turning into a Selke winner which so many seem to want.

Avatar
#106 Walter Sobchak
July 19 2011, 01:36PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@David S

Not to add to an argument, but for every stat that shows Gagner to be a good player, there's an equal amount of evidence that suggests he's deficient in other area's.

For every 'you tube' showing a great goal there's a video of Gagner getting drilled along the boards.

For all that say he played with fringe players, he was played with elite talent as well.

What I need to know is that Gagner can make a huge step forward this year. Not a marginal increase. He has to be faster, stronger, defensively responsible, more points, better face off percentage,leader on and off the ice.

I've been a supporter of Gagner for 5 years, I don't care how old he is, this is his last year in my books unless he completely takes over the 2nd line center.

Avatar
#107 Kodiak
July 19 2011, 01:38PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
David S wrote:

Makes plays, decent shot, goes into the greasy areas, great anticipation and sees the game better than most.

LT, maybe you should have attached this clip in your article. It would have helped your case alot.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OPYYgbykeBg

~Yes. By all means let's ditch this loser at the first opportunity. We don't need any of his kind around our team. RNH WILL CRUSH HIM THIS YEAR!~

Agreed he makes plays. Decent to me means above average and I don't see above average in Gagner's shot, average at best. His goal totals seem to agree with me on this. Skates by the greasy areas trying to pick the puck out, but rarely is able to fight thru traffic or come out with the puck when engaged. Not sure how you see him as having great anticipation. He'd produce a lot more on the PP and score a lot more goals if he could anticipate plays around the net. He also goes offside a lot and that doesn't seem to be a trait of someone with great anticipation. If he saw the game better than most he'd be able to play the defensive side of the puck as well. His defensive zone coverage is very suspect, which wouldn't be the case if he was seeing the game well and anticipating well.

But of course he will improve his skating, defense and physical play because he is only 21 and all 21 year olds improve. (even though he's played 4 seasons in the NHL with marginal improvements in any of those areas to date)

It would be fun to have Horcoff play Gagner's softer minutes and zone starts and Gagner play Horcoff's including the PK and see the results. I'm pretty sure the numbers would be pretty interesting.

Avatar
#108 Walter Sobchak
July 19 2011, 01:47PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Lowetide

Like I said, I was a big supporter of Gagner, you just outlined a couple more things he has to prove this year. I willing to give him this year, in hopes that some of the new talent helps him.

Avatar
#109 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 01:57PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clyde Frog wrote:

Try something for me. Ignore Gagner's stellar rookie season and pretend he only put up 8 points.

Now look at his career totals, looks like an exciting prospect?

So offensively he hasn't smashed down any doors, but please look at the injury history and how we have lacked our top flight offensive players for large stretches..

Its not like they have been riding him on the first line and giving him nothing but sugar time with our best players...

The kid has solidified his production as a 2nd line centre, if he progresses great! If not we can sleep soundly knowing our 2nd line will be producing at the clip we need until we KNOW we have a better talent ready to step up.

Exactly, that's what's most frustrating about this.

I think he raised the bar too high his first year and set us up with unrealistic expecations.

Avatar
#110 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33 wrote:

Gagner is so young still! I can't believe all the hate this guy is getting. He's put up decent numbers for his age. He's played for three different coaches in four years. If RNH cranks it and becomes our #1 centre then great. RNH as #1 and Gagner as #2, that's pretty good.

I still like Gagner and I've been following him since before he was drafted. I just look at the direction of the team and what the team needs and he doesn't seem to fit. Gagner would be a nice addition to a team that is already filled with a lot of big guys. I could see him fitting in a place like Dallas maybe San Jose.

Avatar
#111 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 02:09PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

Don't want to make anyone mad or anything but I think we need to stop focusing on just Gagner and look at the overall picture which is the team.

Regardless I think we can all agree that we hope to see RNH fill out the 1C position and I think we can agree that Gagner isn't likely to ever be a 1C. With that said I think you need to assess the team and what it needs.

We have Horcoff and Belanger for at least the next three years and add to the RNH. Now it has been mentioned that Lander is possibly a future 2C and could be similar to Kesler. Regardless of that assessment I'm sure he will make a good 3C. Horcoff's stats and abilites allow him to be a good option for the 2C as well and Belanger is a perfect 3 or 4 C.

The way I see it Gagner isn't going to be a vital piece of the future, yes he is a good player but I think he will command too much money to play as a third liner and doesn't possess the skills and size to be a defensive expert, I think the biggest benefit for the team would to use him to try and trade for a top 2 defenseman. Hocoff can play 2C and out up similar if not better numbers until lander is ready, which could be sooner than people think.

I don't think its urgent but if I was Tambo I would slowly be looking at offers and interest to package Gagner and a defensive prospect for a Top defenseman.

Agreed we need to look big picture, but it doesn't make a whole bunch of sense for a 30th place team to be counting on 2 guys in their mid 30's.

Avatar
#112 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 02:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

What about maybe Gagner, a defensive prospect like Chorney and draft picks too San Jose for Brent Burns.

They just traded a superior version of Gagner and a prospect for Burns....

Avatar
#113 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:15PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

They just traded a superior version of Gagner and a prospect for Burns....

I'm just using it as an example. I think a trade like that is worth getting a top defensman even if you have to add say a 2 rounder in 2013.

Avatar
#114 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:20PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

Agreed we need to look big picture, but it doesn't make a whole bunch of sense for a 30th place team to be counting on 2 guys in their mid 30's.

Well I think once Belanger contract is finsihed someone like VV will be ready to take on a similar role or another FA signing to fill the gap. I think Horcoff may have another 6 years in him so I wouldn't worry to much about that. I think he will be similar to Smyth and will want to finish his career in Edm likely in a 4th line role. Still enough time to develop or sign a replacement. I think Horcoff next contract will also be a lot less and I think Gagner could be looking for 3+ million and unless he becomes a lot better defensively and maintains his offensive production, I don't see him being worth that salary.

Avatar
#115 David S
July 19 2011, 02:22PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

What about maybe Gagner, a defensive prospect like Chorney and draft picks too San Jose for Brent Burns.

INFINIBUILD™!

Avatar
#116 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:23PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

They just traded a superior version of Gagner and a prospect for Burns....

Also Devin is three years older than Gagner and in the last two season has put up less points on a much better team. I do believe he is a fair step up defensively however.

Avatar
#117 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 02:24PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

I'm just using it as an example. I think a trade like that is worth getting a top defensman even if you have to add say a 2 rounder in 2013.

Well ya, if you can get a high end defender that is still say.... 28 or younger for Gagner without giving up a pile of other assets then ya it would be worth it.

Avatar
#118 Mike Modano's Dog
July 19 2011, 02:24PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

I'm just using it as an example. I think a trade like that is worth getting a top defensman even if you have to add say a 2 rounder in 2013.

Like for Bogosian, for instance? Not saying he's available, but a trade like that would be welcome to me. It's not that I'm not valuing Gagner at all - it's that I do see his value and feel we would be better served by moving him for another rising prospect that would serve our team better than he could. My opinion.

Avatar
#119 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 02:36PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Looks like Stamkos just signed, 5 year 7.5 per.

Can we stop obsessing about saving every penny of cap space for Hall/Ebs/MPS now?

Avatar
#120 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:38PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clyde Frog wrote:

LOOK AT THE STATS FOR WHAT CENTRES PRODUCE:

60+ point Centres over the last 3 years : 21, 26, 22

**DISCLAIMER** Any Centre posting 55+ points should be considered a legit 1st line producer.

Over the last 3 years Sam has moved from 61st, to 54th to 48th overall in scoring for Centres.

Sam has shown consistent improvement in production compared to his fellow Centres, is that not the best measure of production year by year? How he is producing relative to those in the same position?

Sam did start as a fringe 2nd line centre but has since produced enough compete for a job on any team not blessed with 2 first line centres.

Sam's size will dog him, but production wise it has not knocked him out of a second line centres role at all.

If you are desperate to trade him, you better find a bonafide top 6 forward or top 2 defensemen coming back. Because right now, without any growth to his game, Sam deserves to line up as a second line centre no questions asked in the NHL and he has been improving compared to his competetion each and every year since breaking into the league, and still has 8 more years in the NHL before he turns 30...

I don't disagree with you on how good he is and could end up. I still think his defensive game will never be that great. As a 2C I think its important to be good defensively, which is y I like lander as a 2C, and you need bigger energy guys in the bottom 6.

I think he would make a better 1C for stictly scoring but are you willing to pick Gagner over RNH? Also you have to remember that with the kind of numbers he puts up and is likely to put up, his contract is likely to get a fair bit bigger. If Cogs can get a 2.39m a year contract what do you think Gags will get. Probably closer to 4.

An ideal 2nd line situation for Gagner would be on a team that has a large top line that can take care of the checking and energy as well. That would open the 2nd line to just go out and score. That won't be in Edmonton.

I agree that the only way I would trade him is for a Top2 dman. I wouldn't even consider a move for a top 6 forward because thats not what the team needs. As it stands right now the two best assets to get a top dman are Gagner and Hemsky. I don't think the oil will trade hemsky and he will likely sign another contract extension with the club. That leaves Gagner, he improves your team if you keep him but if you get a top dman for him that improves the team much more right now.

Avatar
#121 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 02:43PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

I don't disagree with you on how good he is and could end up. I still think his defensive game will never be that great. As a 2C I think its important to be good defensively, which is y I like lander as a 2C, and you need bigger energy guys in the bottom 6.

I think he would make a better 1C for stictly scoring but are you willing to pick Gagner over RNH? Also you have to remember that with the kind of numbers he puts up and is likely to put up, his contract is likely to get a fair bit bigger. If Cogs can get a 2.39m a year contract what do you think Gags will get. Probably closer to 4.

An ideal 2nd line situation for Gagner would be on a team that has a large top line that can take care of the checking and energy as well. That would open the 2nd line to just go out and score. That won't be in Edmonton.

I agree that the only way I would trade him is for a Top2 dman. I wouldn't even consider a move for a top 6 forward because thats not what the team needs. As it stands right now the two best assets to get a top dman are Gagner and Hemsky. I don't think the oil will trade hemsky and he will likely sign another contract extension with the club. That leaves Gagner, he improves your team if you keep him but if you get a top dman for him that improves the team much more right now.

I think alot of people are getting way ahead of themselves with Lander.

The guys NHL equivalancy was roughly 30 points last year.

Avatar
#122 MaestroFreshMess
July 19 2011, 02:49PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Wow, Ducks give Cogliano nearly 2.4 million per year for 3. Good for him.

Avatar
#123 Dman09
July 19 2011, 02:52PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F wrote:

I think alot of people are getting way ahead of themselves with Lander.

The guys NHL equivalancy was roughly 30 points last year.

Did you read the article on point production. Not a lot of 2nd line centers produce 50 points. I think 40 points a season is possible for Lander and he brings a good defensive game and a lot of leadership.

Avatar
#124 OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F
July 19 2011, 03:02PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

35 centers last season put up 50 points or more. which would lead one to believe that only 5 2nd line centers were able to get 50 points. Its likely different in that there are some 1C that didn't hit 50 points and more 2C that did but you get the general idea. Only 56 Centers got more than 40 points. Thats not even 2 centers a team scoring more than 40 points. I think you may have unreasonable expectations of a second line players.

No I've got a pretty good grasp on what resonable expectations for 2nd liners are. What I think is that I don't want to slot Lander in as our 2C until I see that he can produce at a resonable clip in the NHL.

And yes, 40 points would be an absolute bare minimum IMO.

Avatar
#125 JCA
July 19 2011, 03:07PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

No matter if Hopkins plays Gagne needs Hall and Hemsky as his wingers . If he doesn't put up 60+ points with a decent defensive game the team finds out what they have . This is his year to grasp a permanent spot . If RNH plays give him the Swedes or Smyth & Eberle .

Avatar
#126 Dman09
July 19 2011, 03:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clyde Frog wrote:

What?

Energy and checking as the skillset of your 2nd line?

What?

A second line takes the scoring pressure off the first and should make it tough to roll out the shutdown defensive pair against your first all night.

A good second line produces points. Defensive play is an added bonus, but if they don't produce they aren't called a second line...

I think our expectations have gone even further out of whack...

Energy and checking come from your 4th, hell few teams even run their 3rd lines as shutdown lines anymore.

2nd lines are used to try and shut down top scoring line most of the time if you are line matching. they do need to put up points but expecting all your 2nd liners to put up 50+ points a season is not realistic. They don't have to be energy checkers, they need to be defensively capable of shuting down a top line which usually goes hand in hand with high energy and heavy checking.

Avatar
#127 Dman09
July 19 2011, 03:14PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Dman09

matching top lines with 3rd and 4th lines for most teams is consider a big mismatch.

Avatar
#128 justDOit
July 19 2011, 03:23PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
MaestroFreshMess wrote:

Wow, Ducks give Cogliano nearly 2.4 million per year for 3. Good for him.

It might be good for him, or it might be a minors-dump or buyout in two years.

It'll be a softer landing for him in Ana than it was in Edm, that's for sure. A deeper roster and fans who know more about the shovel girls than the players will help.

Avatar
#129 Walter Sobchak
July 19 2011, 03:26PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Dman09

Not to out date myself or live in the past, but. The Oilers second line was Messier-Anderson-Simpson 50 goal scores and 100 point players. Hardly a checking line.

Checking lines use to be the third line generally.

4th was an energy/aggressive line

Avatar
#130 TigerUnderGlass
July 19 2011, 03:27PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

2nd lines are used to try and shut down top scoring line most of the time if you are line matching. they do need to put up points but expecting all your 2nd liners to put up 50+ points a season is not realistic. They don't have to be energy checkers, they need to be defensively capable of shuting down a top line which usually goes hand in hand with high energy and heavy checking.

I'm not even sure where you are getting this information.

The current trend used by most teams is to play power vs power. Historically a number of teams used a third line as a dedicated checking/shut down line to play against the opponents best.

I have never heard of the second-line-as-shut-down-line tactic.

Second lines are almost always the LEAST defensively responsible of the top 9 and are used against the softest possible opposition to generate offense.

There are obviously variations in how lines are used by coaches, and ranking lines by minutes played makes a difference sometimes, and team depth plays a large part in it, but if we are talking of traditional line roles then you seem way off with this line of thinking.

Avatar
#131 Clyde Frog
July 19 2011, 03:27PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Dman09

Damn,

2nd line players now score 50-60 points AND shutdown the first line?

Dman, I think most of us use the classic definition of hockey lines when talking about players. I think you may be using a different definition set than the rest of us.

Avatar
#132 Walter Sobchak
July 19 2011, 03:37PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Lowetide

Ya, those days were the days, I remember thinking Tim Spelliscy hair was a rug! nope I was wrong.

Avatar
#134 Dman09
July 19 2011, 03:42PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Clyde Frog wrote:

Damn,

2nd line players now score 50-60 points AND shutdown the first line?

Dman, I think most of us use the classic definition of hockey lines when talking about players. I think you may be using a different definition set than the rest of us.

If you actually read properly I was putting a lot of weight on the fact that second line players are not likely to score more than 50 point in a season. And Kelser is a good example of a second line player that was used as a shut down role. Their offense is in part their defense because they also use high energy and checking to accomplish that.

Avatar
#135 TigerUnderGlass
July 19 2011, 03:47PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

If you actually read properly I was putting a lot of weight on the fact that second line players are not likely to score more than 50 point in a season. And Kelser is a good example of a second line player that was used as a shut down role. Their offense is in part their defense because they also use high energy and checking to accomplish that.

Interesting you say that because during the regular season Kelser was 3rd among Canuck centers in Quality of competition and in the playoffs he was 4th.

(ie. he was NOT used in a shut-down role)

Avatar
#136 David Staples
July 19 2011, 03:50PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Sudden Sam played must as much with Taylor Hall and Ales Hemnsky as with Omark and Paajarvi.

He also had a good number of shifts with Dustin Penner.

http://www.dobberhockey.com/frozenpool_linecombo.php?selForward=EDMGAGNER%2CSAM&period=ALL&situation=EV&games=2010-2011%3AR%3A99&Submit=Show+Line+Combinations&sent=go

Avatar
#137 Dman09
July 19 2011, 03:50PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@TigerUnderGlass

Then explain him shutting down the blackhawks in the first round

Avatar
#138 David Staples
July 19 2011, 04:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Neilson numbers are a subjective stats, but NHL teams use them, and I'm sure coaches do their best to be fair and accurate. Otherwise, why bother?

As for me, I've always liked Gagner as a player. Still do. You can say I was biased against him this season and in past seasons, but that doesn't fit my own bias -- I want him to succeed.

And I'm not saying trade the guy.

I'm saying that Rel. Corsi doesn't tell us much if anything about his defensive play, that he's leaked chances and goals against since he got in the NHL, and he's got to improve that to be a useful centre. His offence is OK, though it could be better. It's the defence that's really not working.

I still have high hopes for the kid. He's only 22. He could be the next Hakan Loob yet!

Avatar
#139 TigerUnderGlass
July 19 2011, 04:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Dman09 wrote:

Then explain him shutting down the blackhawks in the first round

Please explain his Qualcomp rating? He spent an entire season comfortably 3rd among centers on his team.

Avatar
#140 Dman09
July 19 2011, 04:19PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Lowetide wrote:

Gagner is 21, turns 22 in August. People always seem to be thinking he's older, it's understandable he's been around awhile despite still being so young.

Gagner, like all young players not named Orr, Lemieux, 99 etc bleeds chances and those chances often end up in the back of the net.

But I do think it's fair to point things out like linemates, etc.

If memory serves, Gagner began playing with MP and Omark around about Christmas. So, if we split the season into two (easier courtesy hockey-reference) we get the first half (36, 9-15-24 -5) and then the second half (32, 6-12-18 -12).

We're all around the reasons (context) for his season but imo the plus minus is explained by the goaltending (what a lousy SP, a lot of pucks ended up in the net he had nothing to do with), the rookie wingers and the fact that the Oilers were horrible.

Sam Gagner wasn't good enough to drag this team out of the abyss. But you could say that about a lot of people who aren't 21, too.

Having said all this, if the right trade came along would you be willing to part with Gagner.

I've said the only way i would trade him is for a top 2 defenseman and the reason I picked Gagner is because i think he is the only player that would make the deal happen. Unless Hemsky decides he doesn't want to play here anymore and/or management doesn't want to keep him. And I think his position right now might be an easier one to replace especially if RNH is full steam ahead this year.

Avatar
#141 Dacota
July 19 2011, 04:32PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

We are currently blessed as Oiler fans with a number of fantasy notions and possibilities going forward. To think that Gagner, Brule, and Cogliano(all top half first rounders) have no place in the organization bodes well for our future, however, there is a time and place for every possible move. I don't envy ST and the balance of power for knowing when the moment is right to transition significant talent out of town, and indeed, for what return.

I expect that most of us would agree that the future would have RNH, Pitlick, and Lander (with many others knocking) as top 3C which is a very enviable position when compared to other organizations in the league. It is largely acknowledged that our current needs cry out for a "minute munching" stud Dman and there are several ways to approach that objective. Currently, the best options would appear to be Bogosian or Weber, but where are we now? Is the timing right? How much cap to commit? This is as much about "Chess" as it is about talent.

I suggest that we don't want to be a one year wonder, but rather find a strategic way to maintain our core in the hopes of creating a post lockout dynasty. That remains a very tall order for the decision makers at the helm. There will be talent that we don't want to go, but they must. Back in the day of the most talented team ever assembled (you know the one), there were constant periphery adjustments from year to year and yet we won 4 of 5. So sorry Steve, tough B'day!! Sidebar-If the Flamer debacle never happened, would Pocklington have had the courage to the Great one?? I say NO! If we would've had the chance at 6 straight...? Go guys...I gotta wear shades!

Avatar
#142 Dman09
July 19 2011, 04:33PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Lowetide

I agree with you on Cogs and I do believe he will be better player down the road and may even be next year.

I would think that Gagner has already proven to be a quality NHL player the problem is his range of skills at the moment are limited. Would it be a possibility, if RNH makes the team, that they may move gagner down to the third line and 2nd pk to try and develope his defensive game more than the offense. Maybe pairing him with one of Smyth, horcoff, belanger on the PK to try and teach him the defensive side of things?

Avatar
#143 @Oilanderp
July 19 2011, 04:38PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Walter Sobchak wrote:

Not to add to an argument, but for every stat that shows Gagner to be a good player, there's an equal amount of evidence that suggests he's deficient in other area's.

For every 'you tube' showing a great goal there's a video of Gagner getting drilled along the boards.

For all that say he played with fringe players, he was played with elite talent as well.

What I need to know is that Gagner can make a huge step forward this year. Not a marginal increase. He has to be faster, stronger, defensively responsible, more points, better face off percentage,leader on and off the ice.

I've been a supporter of Gagner for 5 years, I don't care how old he is, this is his last year in my books unless he completely takes over the 2nd line center.

Yes, if only we had a way of not just examining all the individual cases but some way of combining them at a glance..... oh wait: it's called statistics.

Avatar
#144 Dacota
July 19 2011, 04:44PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

My bad, "TRADE" the great one??

Avatar
#145 Ted Sheckler
July 19 2011, 04:46PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

You can use statistics to prove anything. 94% of people know that.

Avatar
#146 YFC Prez
July 19 2011, 04:48PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Gagner is a quality offensive C right now. I know some of you are ready to call it quits on his development, but I really doubt this is as good as it gets. There is a gifted player there but with a fairly one dimentional skill set, I can't Imagine Gagner ever becoming a decent 2-way center, but I certainly can see him becoming a 50-60 point player. That's more than good enough for #2 C on a contending team. Trading Gagner may very likely come to bite the Oil Brass in the butt. Give him at least 2 more years and if he gets passed in the depth chart by a better player then trade him, no regrets. I just can't fathome giving up on a kid like Gagner at 21-22 years old, we do want to be done this rebuild at some time don't we.

Avatar
#147 Dman09
July 19 2011, 04:58PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
YFC Prez wrote:

Gagner is a quality offensive C right now. I know some of you are ready to call it quits on his development, but I really doubt this is as good as it gets. There is a gifted player there but with a fairly one dimentional skill set, I can't Imagine Gagner ever becoming a decent 2-way center, but I certainly can see him becoming a 50-60 point player. That's more than good enough for #2 C on a contending team. Trading Gagner may very likely come to bite the Oil Brass in the butt. Give him at least 2 more years and if he gets passed in the depth chart by a better player then trade him, no regrets. I just can't fathome giving up on a kid like Gagner at 21-22 years old, we do want to be done this rebuild at some time don't we.

The problem they may face is that he is a one dimentional and because he puts up points he will demand a fat rasie, one which i think the oilers would likely no give him due to the fact that he is a one dimensional player. They want to use that cap to keep the like of RNH, hall, eberle, mps.

Avatar
#149 Quicksilver ballet
July 19 2011, 05:24PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

The glove save by Moog against the Canadians in 81 playoffs for the few who want a walk down memory lane.... http://youtu.be/xTfeHZvfg6k

Avatar
#150 horndog77
July 19 2011, 05:26PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I hope this year Sam and alot of other players on this current roster can surprise us all. I think the offensive talent is there with this group, it's just a matter of staying healthy and not letting as many goals in. D

Comments are closed for this article.