HEMSKY IN LIMBO?

Jason Gregor
February 03 2012 02:47PM

The trade deadline is 24 days away, and so far Ales Hemsky hasn't heard anything from the Oilers regarding his future with or without the team. How is this possible? Does Steve Tambellini believe that top-six forwards grow on trees, and that it will be easy to replace Hemsky? I hope not, because it is very hard to find proven point producers.

People have been speculating for months about Hemsky. Does he want to be here? Is he happy?

I'm a fan of Hemsky's abilities as a player. I've always liked his fearlessness, his ability to beat defenders one-on-one, and his elite level skill. I've always felt he could be even better, if he spent a bit more time after practice working on things, but in my eyes is a bonafide top-six forward, and for years he was the Oilers best player

You'd think they would at least approach him and gauge where is head is at regarding his future with the team.

Hemsky is a simple guy, and he is comfortable in Edmonton. He likes the city, he has lots of friends here and he's essentially grown into a man in Edmonton. If he really wasn't happy don't you think he would have asked for a trade sometime in the past three years when the team was awful, and had no other legitimate offensive threats?

He never did, and now that the Oilers have three young guns coming up, I'd like to think the Oilers would look at the 28-year-old as a part of the future, rather than ship him off for prospect and unproven potential.

It is ridiculous that the Oilers haven't approached him with anything significant to see if he'd be willing to re-sign. Maybe they will have differing opinions on terms of a new deal, but if the Oilers don't at least approach him and his agent then they have failed big-time in trying to ensure that this team becomes competitive.

Hemsky didnt' come out and say it's a guarantee he would sign here, but he would at least like to hear from management.

Here are some of the things he said earlier on my radio show today.

"The future looks bright now. We have some great young players, but I don't know what will happen. It's not in my hands right now. I haven't really talked to them, and it is up to them to come and talk to me. We have another three weeks, which really isn't a long time to do something," said Hemsky.

Would you want to stay in Edmonton for another three or four year deal, I asked.

"Of course I would like to stay, but it depends on the terms. I can't really talk about it because I haven't seen an offer yet. I like the guys here, I like the city, the fans are great and I have lots of friends here. I've always been happy here so I'd like to stay.'''

How do you feel health wise? Are your shoulders finally better, do you think you can be like Marian Gaborik and stay healthy after a few years of injuries?

"I feel like I'm just coming into my prime. I don't feel like I'm close to retiring, (laughs) I'm only 28 and I have lots of hockey in front of me. It (shoulders) was something I had to fix and there was no other way to do it, and I'm happy I did the surgery. I feel like I'll be a better player now. Of course it was a struggle with the injuries for a few years, and this year has been a bit of a struggle offensively for me, but I'm feeling much better lately. I've had some pretty good years before and I'm confident I'll be back there again."

Hemsky didnt' guarantee he'd stay here, but it was clear he would at least like to see an offer from the Oilers. He also was confident that his best years are still ahead of him.

"Whoever gets me, the Oilers or another team, will be getting the best Hemmer yet."

From my vantage point trading Hemsky will be a step backwards for this team. They could likely get a late first round pick for him, but that player won't be an impact NHLer for at least three years, if ever. Trading away a proven player who is 28 makes no sense to me, but it makes even less sense that the organization hasn't even spoken to him about an extension.

If that doesn't change in the next three weeks, and the Oilers end up trading him, then it is fair to say that the organizaton still lacks proper communication skills.

It is very possible the two sides won't be able to come to an agreement even if they offered him a deal, but to do nothing would be a mistake. It would be a major slap to the face of Hemsky to not even offer him anything reasonable. Maybe he wants four years or more, and maybe the Oilers only want to offer him two, but at least find out exactly what he wants.

If he wants to be here, and you can agree on a reasonable contract why wouldn't you keep him? Do people honestly think his best days are behind him? I sure don't.

I repeat proven top-six forwards are hard to find. I know Hemsky is struggling this season, but many guys have had off years, only to rebound the next.

Are the Oilers willing to dispatch a player who feels that is best is yet to come without as much as a contract offer? I sure hope not.

Mr. Tambellini I strongly recommend that you or someone from the organization pick up the phone and talk to Hemsky's agent. The Oilers have no one in the system who is close to putting up Hemsky-like numbers. I don't see anyone who you can confidently say is able to be a solid 2nd line right-winger behind Jordan Eberle next season.

Before you trade Hemsky at least find out if you can keep him.

You owe it to him and your fans.

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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#2 TrentonL
February 03 2012, 03:01PM
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Mega props Gregor for asking him the question of weather he wants to be here instead of looking at an injured guys body language and concluding he wants out. Hemsky has said repeatedly season over season that he likes it in Edmonton and wants to stay. Could not agree more, you do not just let a scorer like Hemsky walk, especially without making every effort to make it work. Failure to approach Hemsky is another mind boggling move by Oilers management, who could have guessed that.....

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#3 Clyde Frog
February 03 2012, 03:01PM
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Especially if we are trying to end the rebuild and become a competitor.

At some point you need to actually keep talent and build on it, trading points for magic beans that may generate points is the bad habit teams have to break to leave the basement!

Auditioning half the roster every year is how you become the islanders, not the wings.

Just saying.

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#4 Travis Dakin
February 03 2012, 03:09PM
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Mother of GOD!!!! This is madness!!!! Sign the damn guy. He's put up with everything you've put him through. Now reward him for being a good soldier and the only reason we had anything to cheer about from 2007-2010. Dammit Tambo! TTTTTTAAAAMMMMMMBBBBOOOOOO!!!!

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#5 Romulus' Apotheosis
February 03 2012, 05:46PM
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If what Hemsky says is true... ST is done for me. Your first option has to be to sign Hemksy. If you don't try... you are criminally malfeasant.

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#7 Lowetide
February 03 2012, 09:13PM
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Great article, Jason. Completely agree. Time to stop dealing useful players for picks and prospects and retain skill.

Hemsky is not a shrinking violet, he is very skilled and this season's down numbers perhaps means a better (for the Oilers) cap number.

Winning organizations retain their own best players. 83 is certainly worth at least a conversation.

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#8 book¡e
February 03 2012, 03:11PM
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Yes, I agree mega-props for asking the guy as opposed to interpreting 'body language'.

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#9 Matt Henderson
February 03 2012, 03:11PM
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Wow.

I get the Oilers trading him if the return is right.

I get the Oilers trading him if he doesnt sign by the Deadline.

I get the Oilers trading him if he demands way too much money.

What I dont get, and only adds to my ever growing list of reasons to turf Tambi, is that dialogue wasnt even opened about extending Hemsky at all. 3 weeks before the Deadline and this team still doesnt know what their options are because Tambellini is too incompetent to pick up a telephone and talk with Hemsky's agent!

At least Tambellini could pretend to have weighed all the options in front of him if the phone lines were open, but this is just another example of ST sitting around doing nothing.

As badly as Hemsky has looked recently, you have to know what your options are. Tambellini looks to be putting all of his eggs in the Trade basket, and I have little confidence in him.

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#10 yawto
February 03 2012, 02:50PM
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Still don't know why we would want to trade hemmer in the fist place.

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#11 Henry
February 03 2012, 03:56PM
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Mr. Gregor, Thanks for articulating pretty much what I've been thinking for a while. Hemsky is a terrific player having an inconsistent year. Not good yesterday, very good against Vancouver (playing with Hall).

Not exploring a deal with Hemsky would be seriously incompetent for Management. Could it be that they are procrastinating on re-signing Hemsky with the Tambi and Renney decisions up in the air? Still, it makes sense to talk contract with Hemsky if only to show the teams out there bidding for a trade that the team doesn't need to trade him and they will have to pay up with real talent.

He said that he wants to stay and doesn't seem motivated by greed. If true, what's the problem?

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#12 Zamboni Driver
February 03 2012, 04:06PM
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Wow.

Matheson. Jones. Chubey. even Brownlee have to got to be cringing right now.

Not only because the Tin Man finally spoke (not to them) - but that the reporter ran to the public without any verification.

To suggest that the Oilers have NEVER made an overture to Hemsky is ridiculous. And, believe me, I'm no fan of the 'Braintrust' at all...even they are not this dull.

When it comes down to it, Hemsky is a business asset. To suggest they would NEVER approach him, as far back as this time last year is patently foolish.

Congrats, I guess Jason. Mr. Hemsky and his agent are, I'm sure, thrilled.

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#13 Mark-LW
February 03 2012, 04:52PM
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Oilers4ever wrote:

TrentonL.. with all due respect, because everyone is entitled to their opinion, if yer a top 6 guy getting paid the big bucks, you find a way to get the points. Seriously... 17 goals, 1 point and you come back with he played against Toews? What kinda crap ass excuse is that? Gagner was out against Kane most of the night and got 8 points, so what's your point? The Sedins of the world, the Datsyuks.. the Zetterbergs.. all play against top players or checkers and yet they still put up the points. There are no excuses. If Hemsky REALLY IS that good then you find a way. Don't get me wrong, he's a good player, but stop defending the guy like he's your kid or something. Point being, in comparison to other top 6 forwards of other teams around the league, he does not put up the points for what he is paid to do and he's a liability injury wise. I never said they should turf him outright. If he wants to stay and at a discount based on his production over the last couple years and his injuries then fair ball. He's good when he decides to actually play... Problem is, he doesn't come to play enough.

If by "Gagner was out against Kane most of the night" you mean that he was out against Kane for 1.6 minutes then you are correct.

Hemsky was out most often against Keith, Toews, Kane and Seabrook in that order.

"Problem is" your entire post.

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#14 Chris
February 03 2012, 04:21PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

Let me ask you this what has Hemsky showed since 07-08 that would led you to believe that he'll be a PPG player over 80 games? Heck make it 70 as he played 74 that year.

So whats your point? That he isn't a PPG player so therefore is no good?

In 2010-2011 if he got 69pts he would have been 25th in entire league scoring.

There were 7 PPG players in the entire league. SEVEN.

So you are saying that because he isn't in the top 7 in the entire league he should be turfed for some other teams AHL castoff prospect?

Even if he got 60pts he is still a top 6 fwd on ANY team in the NHL. Any.

If you think Omark can be a top 10 NHL player in this league I'd like some of what you are smoking.

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#15 TrentonL
February 03 2012, 05:10PM
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Druds wrote:

So let me get this straight...Hemmer has played like crap or not played at all the last three years and we should be running to him on our knees offering him 4-5Million ???!! just because he was such a good trooper 4 years ago...isnt that how we ended up paying horcoff 5.5 million forever? Hemsky has shown through his play and his attitude that his days are done. What would that say to the young guys...oh you just have to stay here and like the city and you will get a guaranteed 4 million ...playing good is optional?

Stupid

In the last 3 years including this half season, Hemsky has 84 points in the 107 games he has played. That is .79 points per game or 64 points for a season. How is that crappy play?

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#16 JeffG
February 03 2012, 06:47PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

The Oilers have CONFIRMED to me that no numbers have been presented to them and they haven't presented any to him. So you sure you don't want to retract your asinine comment.

There has been no talk of substance. Term will be the major stepping stone, but until offers get on the table, neither side will know what the other wants.

And last I checked there will be way more teams looking to acquire Hemsky, than top-six forwards that the Oilers can acquire by next October, so the Oilers should be the ones to make him an offer.

The biggest decision right now regarding the Oilers is Hemsky. So while you can suggest there has been some meaningless convos, it is FACTUAL that there has been no serious discussions.

This is inexcusable.

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#17 Romulus' Apotheosis
February 04 2012, 08:35AM
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@Mumbai Max

If he DID produce at the level of a 1st or 2nd line proven 5 million dollar player i would agree with you. But try as we might to prove the point with numbers, exept for PARTs of a couple of seasons, he has not done that

OK... you're done. People have tried this line before. They feel the weakness of their argument so they try and fudge the numbers or play at being unaware of how many points NHL players typically score.

"exept for PARTs of a couple of seasons, he has not done that"

Based on what?? Here are two measures to prove how completely ridiculously wrong you are.

1) Since the lockout (excluding this year), ie. from 2006-2011 of the players who have played 300+ games Hemsky is 27th in the league in PPG scoring at .92!! 27th!!! Twenty effing Seventh!! And that's not a one off that's over a span of years, i.e., not PARTS of a COUPLE of seasons.

Only someone serially unaware of what it takes to score in the NHL and what actual NHL numbers look like would discount that.

(As a point of reference last year 614 players in general and 400 forwards played at least 30 games in the NHL)

2) Let's look at his career in total since draft and compare him to the people drafted in the years around him to gage what fans should expect of a 13th overall pick from 2001. (I've posted this before and it is only up to date to earlier this season when I originally posted it:

Hemsky Reality Check

First, he was drafted 2001 but let's do some comparisons: head-to-head boxcars Hemsky vs 2001-2003 draft pics.

NB: I've only included those with 350 points or more. I listed draft position and year. Obviously Games Played affects this list in terms of Points Per... but given Hemsky's injuries it balances out for the most part.

Kovalchuk - 720 374-342-716 (draft 1st 2001)

Spezza - 550 201-354-555 (draft 2nd 2001)

Staal - 586 231-285-516 (Draft 2nd 2003)

Nash - 616 266-239-505 (draft 1st 2002)

Getzlaf 454 131-303-434 (draft 19th 2003)

Vanek 493 216-197-413 (draft 5th 2003)

Hemsky 504 116-287-403 (draft 13th 2001)

Roy 493 150-249-399 (draft 32nd 2001)

Cammalleri 516 182-213-395 (draft 49 2001)

Perry 474 179-211-390 (draft 28th 2003)

Pominville 483 154-230-384 (draft 55th (2001)

Richards 477 144-225-369 (draft 24th 2003)

Horton 525 174-190-364 (draft 3rd 2003)

Semin 414 181-183-364 (draft 13th 2002)

Wiess - 581 132-224-356 (draft 4th 2001)

Bergeron 479 126-228-354 (draft 45th 2003)

Parise 443 169-185-354 (draft 17th 2003)

Carter 475 184-167-351 (draft 11th 2003)

It's nice to see that list. Hemsky is pretty high among a pretty elite list of players there. He is 7th in production and excepting Getzlaf (behind him at 19th and Vanek ahead of him at 5th) all those are either 1st or 2nd overall pics ahead of him.

2001 and 2003 were deep years for forwards and Hemsky has produced and he's got the career numbers to prove it. He has fulfilled his 13th overall billing.

**So since the lockout he's out-produced the vast majority of NHL forwards by a huge margin. And when compared with the ELITES clustered around his draft years he rates HIGHER than his draft pedigree suggests and ranks alongside the NHL's elite.

[H/T to melanchoyculkin to pointing out the first point in another thread. Go here and type in the data to check my work: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play-index/psl_finder.cgi ]

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#18 Rick
February 03 2012, 03:20PM
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You are right on with your comments. This is a major oversight by the management and, as a season ticket holder, I find their lackadaisical approach disturbing.

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#19 Walter Sobchak
February 03 2012, 03:24PM
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I still say coming off those injury is very hard thing to over come. Having said that I could see how a guy could get frustrated when your not complimented with like skill set. Let's see how he will play with a legit center playing beside him.

Do you honestly see Tambellini trading Hemsky for what rumors are floating out there? I do. Shame on Tambellini if he does.

IMO Hemsky is worth at least a top ten pick if he gets traded plus a top end prospect.

Still having no faith in this management team.

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#20 Milli
February 03 2012, 03:24PM
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Oh and Rishaug, I am sooo damn tired of hearing "move the asset". This is a player, his name is hemsky, he has been playing for us for years. His name is hemsky. Trade him, fine, sign him, fine. Asset? He is a player. And really, if he'd sign at the right price, why wouldn't he be here? And, maybe he has played like sh1t because this has really weighed on his mind.

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#21 LoDog
February 03 2012, 03:25PM
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Jump the gun much?

Just because the Oilers have not made any offer to Hemsky does not mean they have not talked to his agent and gauged interest.

Just giving Tambi haters a non story to pile on some more hate.

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#22 TrentonL
February 03 2012, 03:27PM
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Oilers4ever wrote:

I'll tell you why he should be traded:

1) We scored 8 goals last night and he didn't get a sniff point wise. Neither did a lot of other offensive players but for a top 6 guy, making the money he does and wanting what he will likely want come July, no points when you score 8, pathetic.

2) Reports always state last guy on the ice, first guy off. Doesn't sound like someone trying to improve his game.

3) I really believe Omark can be as good or better than Hemsky if given top 6 minutes and at a fraction of the cost. Yes, naysayers will say he has not proven that either, but Omark has never been given the chance either. Look at Gags last night.. plays with the top two wingers on the team and ka-ching. Nuff Said

4) For a guy who has spent more time on the IR than the ice in the last 4 years, he won't be worth anything more than a 1 year term at about 3 million until he proves otherwise. If there is a GM out there dumb enough to offer huge years at 5.5mill plus, let them have him. We could put the money to better things... like Hall and Ebs in another year.

If he will take a home town discount on a one year contract and prove he belongs longterm without all the sulking and such I am all for it. Otherwise, trade him for whatever you can get and move on.

Oh.. and in the other blowout against the Hawks... 9-2.. Hemmer had one point.. 17 goals.. one point. Any further questions? I thought not...

Hemsky played against Toews all night long. Holding not getting a point in these games against him is asinine.

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#23 Oilers4ever
February 03 2012, 03:36PM
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TrentonL.. with all due respect, because everyone is entitled to their opinion, if yer a top 6 guy getting paid the big bucks, you find a way to get the points. Seriously... 17 goals, 1 point and you come back with he played against Toews? What kinda crap ass excuse is that? Gagner was out against Kane most of the night and got 8 points, so what's your point? The Sedins of the world, the Datsyuks.. the Zetterbergs.. all play against top players or checkers and yet they still put up the points. There are no excuses. If Hemsky REALLY IS that good then you find a way. Don't get me wrong, he's a good player, but stop defending the guy like he's your kid or something. Point being, in comparison to other top 6 forwards of other teams around the league, he does not put up the points for what he is paid to do and he's a liability injury wise. I never said they should turf him outright. If he wants to stay and at a discount based on his production over the last couple years and his injuries then fair ball. He's good when he decides to actually play... Problem is, he doesn't come to play enough.

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#24 Jerconjake
February 03 2012, 03:36PM
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Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach wrote:

As far as his best days. They are over. Not saying he can't be a solid top 6 player, but he'll never play a full season and very doubtful he every plays at a PPG pace unless it's over a 10 game season.

Based on what? A player's career doesn't end at 28, even with injuries. The skill is still there and his body will catch up eventually.

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#25 TrentonL
February 03 2012, 04:34PM
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Oilers4ever wrote:

TrentonL.. with all due respect, because everyone is entitled to their opinion, if yer a top 6 guy getting paid the big bucks, you find a way to get the points. Seriously... 17 goals, 1 point and you come back with he played against Toews? What kinda crap ass excuse is that? Gagner was out against Kane most of the night and got 8 points, so what's your point? The Sedins of the world, the Datsyuks.. the Zetterbergs.. all play against top players or checkers and yet they still put up the points. There are no excuses. If Hemsky REALLY IS that good then you find a way. Don't get me wrong, he's a good player, but stop defending the guy like he's your kid or something. Point being, in comparison to other top 6 forwards of other teams around the league, he does not put up the points for what he is paid to do and he's a liability injury wise. I never said they should turf him outright. If he wants to stay and at a discount based on his production over the last couple years and his injuries then fair ball. He's good when he decides to actually play... Problem is, he doesn't come to play enough.

Here is your excuse, the guy has been recovering from shoulder surgery most of the year and is still putting up a point every 2 games. By your logic the Penguins should dump Crosby as he has played even less games than Hemsky in the last 2 years.

Newsflash buddy, Gagner is not going to put up 8 points every game. Hall/Eberle/RNH will not score a point every game. Hemsky has put up 5 point nights when other guys were shut-out as well.

In his last 85 games, Hemsky has put up 62 points while playing hurt in half the games. That would put him just outside the top 30 scorers last year. You are right though he is not a top 6 forward.....

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#26 Lofty
February 03 2012, 04:34PM
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Travis Dakin wrote:

Mother of GOD!!!! This is madness!!!! Sign the damn guy. He's put up with everything you've put him through. Now reward him for being a good soldier and the only reason we had anything to cheer about from 2007-2010. Dammit Tambo! TTTTTTAAAAMMMMMMBBBBOOOOOO!!!!

Dakin you made the first page of CBS's hockey page!

http://eye-on-hockey.blogs.cbssports.com/mcc/blogs/entry/27694626/34683475

Didn't there used to be a score and win thing that would give a million bucks if an oiled scored 4 goals in a game?

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#27 Rama Lama
February 03 2012, 04:35PM
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What I find absolutely confunding, is that there are STILL fans that support this over-rated has been.

Yes he had some good years, so freking what? If Hemsky wanted to be signed I would suggest his play would indicate that notion. Instead we get a lazy, pouting, shy, ( oh Im still hurt ) shade of his former self, guy who seems as engaged as monkey at a MENSA meeting!

For all those of you who continue to support this has been, when exactly are you going to embrace reality?

It's time to, "cut our losses", with this player who need a change as much as we do!!!

Bye bye Hemsky, take your pouting to some other team.

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#28 closetgm
February 03 2012, 05:29PM
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If this story is in anyway accurate Katz might as well fire Tambellini, Lowe, and anyone else involved in the way players and there contracts are handled. I am sick of the way these guys are treated by the fans and if this is the way they are treated by the organization there is no future for this team. What happens when hall gets hurt in his career, is he going to be a washed up has been never was that good anyways. My point is we need to start using our brains and making sure that we know what we have and what we are going to need. Not just be chasing our tails in two years going we need a second line center and a scoring winger. Get him resigned you will not get fair value for Hemsky right now. IMO Hemsky and a second rounder maybe a third next year for Suter is a deal thats good for both teams. I dont care what color my glasses are he doesnt go anywhere for less than that. If that is not the return sign him and play him for years to come.

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#29 magisterrex
February 03 2012, 05:47PM
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TrentonL wrote:

In the last 3 years including this half season, Hemsky has 84 points in the 107 games he has played. That is .79 points per game or 64 points for a season. How is that crappy play?

Your reply shows the problem. 82 games per season x 3 seasons is 246 games. He's played less than 1/2, at 107. What happened to the Oilers' game plan for the remaining games?

Just not worth the risk, unless he signs for less to stay here, and we can bring up wingers from the farm to supplement whenever (not if) he goes back on the IR.

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#30 Oil Bog
February 03 2012, 05:48PM
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The one thing I learned from the Pronger deal is that a change of address does not always work. Even if Edmonton could trade Hemsky as part of a package (along with Gagner perhaps)for a top 3 D-man how do you know that individual will be happy in Edmonton? As for a second line scoring threat how long would it take Edmonton to fill the loss of Hemsky and/ or Gagner? Based upon what is in the system I have not seen evidence that a sure hit exists to replace their loss. However, based on Hemsky's conversation with Jason I still feel that if a player really wants to stay somewhere they need to step up and direct their agent. Look how it worked out for Smyth once upon a time.

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#31 Romulus' Apotheosis
February 03 2012, 06:14PM
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TrentonL wrote:

In the last 3 years including this half season, Hemsky has 84 points in the 107 games he has played. That is .79 points per game or 64 points for a season. How is that crappy play?

That's easy... because lots fans only like two kinds of players only Gretzky and Semenko. If you don't lead the league in scoring or raise your profile maximally through hits, "effort" and affability (look at Bissonnette's absurd profile based on a funny twitter account)... then you don't matter and can be discarded.

The expectations of buzzwords like "elite" "top 6" etc are wildly inflated by Hemsky's detractors. They seem to have no cognizance of the basic numbers NHL players actually put up. Otherwise they would recognize Hemsky's status.

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#32 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
February 03 2012, 07:03PM
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bcoil wrote:

Maybe after watching how Hemsky has handled this and so many other situations over the last few years they have decide like Moreau and so many others he is part of the problem and not part of the solution.....Gagne has had the same trade talk swerling around him as Hemsky has all year and how did he handle it ? He went out and worked his butt of to show the management he wants to stay ....even getting into a fight in anahiem ...... who do I want on my team .........Gagne or a man that spends most of his time pouting ......yes you guessed it they want the Gagne's the Halls the Eberles who will go thru walls for each other and no tsit around and pout becasue you arn't getting the ice time you think you should be getting...YOU have been used by him and his agent

YOU have been used by Hooked on Phonics.

Im not normally one to point out the odd error in spelling, but if you are going to go through all the effort to try and show how smart you are, maybe proof read the damn post or run it through a spell checker first.

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#33 OilBaron
February 03 2012, 09:31PM
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We were listening to the radio in the office today and had to turn it off, the Hemsky love in was offbase, overblown, and over the line. It was a ridiculous display.

Rishaug and more so Spec had it dead on.

Hemsky isn't having a bad year, a bad year implies effort and a lot of snakebites. It is understandable. Belanger is having a bad year.

Hemsky isn't making the effort, he's giving up on plays, and he's looking like a quitter. Outwardly, he's got a bad attitude and you can't have it in the room.

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#34 Romulus' Apotheosis
February 03 2012, 09:37PM
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etownman wrote:

RA, I suppose next you'll be looking for indents to improve my grade!

In my opinion Gregor is the one assuming a lot in regards to Hemsky. Other sources (Rishaug via twitter) are saying there has been conversations regarding a new contract! Who to believe? I truly believe the Oilers are going to protect this asset, one way or the other but to drum up hysteria by opinionating the Oilers don't care about Hemsky is wrong!

Pretty much (break, happy(?), no blurring from wobbly pop consumption) all the Oiler fans I know & have talked to about Hemsky all agree that Hemmer is one good Steve Ott hit away from IR!

Yes RA, I would take MPS's upside (15 goals opposed to Hemmer's 6 in their rookie season's)!

Like Diehard said... it's just easier to read. It was hardly a grammar tourettes moment.

Ok... two things then:

1) which is the better predictor of Hemsky's future performance: a) his career up to this season; b) this season; c) some combination of the two.

2) how are we to interpret Hemsky's remarks in light of Rishaug's reporting and Gregor's follow-up with the Oilers...

RE: 1) Seems like a lot of Hemsky's detractors are convinced that this year's performance is the only factor that matters when performance is in question; or only the last two years if health is in question.

The second however... that someone points out that he's performed very well outside of this year... either the goalposts change or they decide prior history is irrelevant. Or if someone points out that up until his major shoulder injuries he was a consistently healthy performer... again same story.

My take is the guy is a flawed player like everyone else in the league. He's a risk and he is in a downslide and he has injury issues. These are real problems. However, I still think these issues need to be

* weighed against the totality of his career. And

** weighed against the possible return for a trade

In both cases I see the upside on the side of keeping him

RE: 2) It seems that the fair interpretation of all this is that the Oilers have had minimal contact with Hemsky and agent - enough to say "yea, we forwarded him a video of a cat falling off a chair" but not enough to say that they actually sat down and tried to come to or even discuss terms of a deal.

Also, I don't think the issue is that the Oilers don't care about Hemsky... the issue is more: is there a pattern of

* poor communication from the office. And

** poor decision making from the office

That is what concerns me. If Hemsky gets traded without having been offered a legit deal it will be IMO another symptom of rot in the system.

Do you know who else is "one good Steve Ott hit away from IR!"?? every healthy player ever! Have you watched this season? Sutton out for stepping on the warm-up ice; RNH out for skating on the ice; Hall out for being stepped on on the ice... etc, etc, etc. People lose games for a lot less than a bruising hit from a guy like Ott.

You completely missed my point on MPV. Why is it either/or? and why do you think the Oilers are so potent that they can do with only the one? Are you satisfied that we are potent enough offensively that we can start shedding scoring?

And another thing... since you are so wedded to Hemsky's poor performance this year... I find it odd that MPV's poor performance this year seems to make no impression on you.

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#35 sean john
February 03 2012, 11:34PM
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so, if he wants to sign here, why is waiting till after the trade deadline so impossible? you're afraid his feelings will be hurt and then will not sign, correct? Gregor, you keep saying he's so proven. He's proven he can get almost a point-per-game on a garbage team inwhich he gets all the sugar time. He is never getting the top dog role on this team again, which means... wait for it... he's never going to be a point-per-game player again (except for a the odd short streak). you keep pointing to Gaborik. One example, and Gaborik was a superstar, not a solid firstline player. Steve Conroy was a solid firsline player, too. Brendan Morrison, Jason Blake... all guys who looked better than were because the were in situation where they could look good. I don't think waiting is such a big risk.

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#36 Dave
February 04 2012, 05:29AM
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I think Hemmer should watch some game tape, And then ask, why? At this point he is barely playable and not at all tradeable. All downside, no upside.

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#37 Chris
February 04 2012, 09:03AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:
If he DID produce at the level of a 1st or 2nd line proven 5 million dollar player i would agree with you. But try as we might to prove the point with numbers, exept for PARTs of a couple of seasons, he has not done that

OK... you're done. People have tried this line before. They feel the weakness of their argument so they try and fudge the numbers or play at being unaware of how many points NHL players typically score.

"exept for PARTs of a couple of seasons, he has not done that"

Based on what?? Here are two measures to prove how completely ridiculously wrong you are.

1) Since the lockout (excluding this year), ie. from 2006-2011 of the players who have played 300+ games Hemsky is 27th in the league in PPG scoring at .92!! 27th!!! Twenty effing Seventh!! And that's not a one off that's over a span of years, i.e., not PARTS of a COUPLE of seasons.

Only someone serially unaware of what it takes to score in the NHL and what actual NHL numbers look like would discount that.

(As a point of reference last year 614 players in general and 400 forwards played at least 30 games in the NHL)

2) Let's look at his career in total since draft and compare him to the people drafted in the years around him to gage what fans should expect of a 13th overall pick from 2001. (I've posted this before and it is only up to date to earlier this season when I originally posted it:

Hemsky Reality Check

First, he was drafted 2001 but let's do some comparisons: head-to-head boxcars Hemsky vs 2001-2003 draft pics.

NB: I've only included those with 350 points or more. I listed draft position and year. Obviously Games Played affects this list in terms of Points Per... but given Hemsky's injuries it balances out for the most part.

Kovalchuk - 720 374-342-716 (draft 1st 2001)

Spezza - 550 201-354-555 (draft 2nd 2001)

Staal - 586 231-285-516 (Draft 2nd 2003)

Nash - 616 266-239-505 (draft 1st 2002)

Getzlaf 454 131-303-434 (draft 19th 2003)

Vanek 493 216-197-413 (draft 5th 2003)

Hemsky 504 116-287-403 (draft 13th 2001)

Roy 493 150-249-399 (draft 32nd 2001)

Cammalleri 516 182-213-395 (draft 49 2001)

Perry 474 179-211-390 (draft 28th 2003)

Pominville 483 154-230-384 (draft 55th (2001)

Richards 477 144-225-369 (draft 24th 2003)

Horton 525 174-190-364 (draft 3rd 2003)

Semin 414 181-183-364 (draft 13th 2002)

Wiess - 581 132-224-356 (draft 4th 2001)

Bergeron 479 126-228-354 (draft 45th 2003)

Parise 443 169-185-354 (draft 17th 2003)

Carter 475 184-167-351 (draft 11th 2003)

It's nice to see that list. Hemsky is pretty high among a pretty elite list of players there. He is 7th in production and excepting Getzlaf (behind him at 19th and Vanek ahead of him at 5th) all those are either 1st or 2nd overall pics ahead of him.

2001 and 2003 were deep years for forwards and Hemsky has produced and he's got the career numbers to prove it. He has fulfilled his 13th overall billing.

**So since the lockout he's out-produced the vast majority of NHL forwards by a huge margin. And when compared with the ELITES clustered around his draft years he rates HIGHER than his draft pedigree suggests and ranks alongside the NHL's elite.

[H/T to melanchoyculkin to pointing out the first point in another thread. Go here and type in the data to check my work: http://www.hockey-reference.com/play-index/psl_finder.cgi ]

Thanks for this. I'm so tired of people complaining that Hemsky isn't good enough because he doesn't get 90pts/season. People have seriously flawed views of what a top 6 fwd is is expected to produce and how hard they are to come by.

Last year the Bruins won the cup with nobody having more than 62pts. I guess their whole team was washed up and not producing.

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#38 rubbertrout
February 04 2012, 11:31AM
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@Dave Lumley

He's a UFA. There are no qualifying offers.

I'm horrified to find out that there haven't at least been some discussions between management and his agent. If he doesn't want to be here and wants out then you have to move him to get something for him. Not even kicking the tires on this is yet another example of the failures of this management group.

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#42 book¡e
February 03 2012, 02:55PM
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Hemsky is pouting, if he really wanted to stay here then he would say so¡

On that note - I believe that the team should have talked to him. This seems to be an ongoing problem with this management group. They fail to communicate with players effectively. Regardless of one's position, you need to come across as cordial and respectful of those you deal with. It empowers you in a lot of ways to do so. It makes no sense to not be talking to him.

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#43 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
February 03 2012, 03:06PM
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Well according to Rishaug they've talked to the agent about whether or not he is interested in coming back. Whether or not they talked about a contract is a different story.

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#44 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
February 03 2012, 03:08PM
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As far as his best days. They are over. Not saying he can't be a solid top 6 player, but he'll never play a full season and very doubtful he every plays at a PPG pace unless it's over a 10 game season.

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#45 Eddie Shore
February 03 2012, 03:13PM
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book¡e wrote:

Hemsky is pouting, if he really wanted to stay here then he would say so¡

On that note - I believe that the team should have talked to him. This seems to be an ongoing problem with this management group. They fail to communicate with players effectively. Regardless of one's position, you need to come across as cordial and respectful of those you deal with. It empowers you in a lot of ways to do so. It makes no sense to not be talking to him.

"Of course I would like to stay, but it depends on the terms. I can't really talk about it because I haven't seen an offer yet. I like the guys here, I like the city, the fans are great and I have lots of friends here. I've always been happy here so I'd like to stay.'''

Sounds like he would stay if a reasonable contract was tendered...

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#46 Wendy01
February 03 2012, 03:13PM
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I feel a great deal of frustration over the way Oiler's management deals with their players. It isn't just Hemsky. It is the perception that this is the way all players are handled by management. Point in case; we all knew there was no way in the world they were sending RNH back to junior in the fall after his nine games and yet they let the kid sweat to the bitter end. Is it Renney? Is it Tambellini? Does it go further up the food chain? Who would know? As to Hemsky.... well I'm not one to say the team should trade him but I think they should be finding where his head is at. On the other side of things... how does a guy go -2 and no shots on a night the team gets 8 goals? Is it his linemates? Horcoff is a bust as far as I'm concerned. It must be like skating with a boat anchor tied to your a** with him as a linemate. He's either stepping on the puck or looking like Bambi on the ice! I digress! I like Hemsky. I hope they sign him and see where he goes next year. Top six guys are hard to come by.

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#47 Milli
February 03 2012, 03:20PM
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Ya, I am not a huge Hemsky fan, but dear god why wouldn't you be speaking with him and try and get something done. Make an offer, try and get a decent term with no no movement clause. It does seem nuts to let this guy walk without getting much in return

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#48 Oilers4ever
February 03 2012, 03:21PM
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I'll tell you why he should be traded:

1) We scored 8 goals last night and he didn't get a sniff point wise. Neither did a lot of other offensive players but for a top 6 guy, making the money he does and wanting what he will likely want come July, no points when you score 8, pathetic.

2) Reports always state last guy on the ice, first guy off. Doesn't sound like someone trying to improve his game.

3) I really believe Omark can be as good or better than Hemsky if given top 6 minutes and at a fraction of the cost. Yes, naysayers will say he has not proven that either, but Omark has never been given the chance either. Look at Gags last night.. plays with the top two wingers on the team and ka-ching. Nuff Said

4) For a guy who has spent more time on the IR than the ice in the last 4 years, he won't be worth anything more than a 1 year term at about 3 million until he proves otherwise. If there is a GM out there dumb enough to offer huge years at 5.5mill plus, let them have him. We could put the money to better things... like Hall and Ebs in another year.

If he will take a home town discount on a one year contract and prove he belongs longterm without all the sulking and such I am all for it. Otherwise, trade him for whatever you can get and move on.

Oh.. and in the other blowout against the Hawks... 9-2.. Hemmer had one point.. 17 goals.. one point. Any further questions? I thought not...

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#49 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
February 03 2012, 03:25PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I still say coming off those injury is very hard thing to over come. Having said that I could see how a guy could get frustrated when your not complimented with like skill set. Let's see how he will play with a legit center playing beside him.

Do you honestly see Tambellini trading Hemsky for what rumors are floating out there? I do. Shame on Tambellini if he does.

IMO Hemsky is worth at least a top ten pick if he gets traded plus a top end prospect.

Still having no faith in this management team.

Good luck getting a top ten plus top end prospect.

Injury prone UFA's don't go for that.

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#50 Sean17
February 03 2012, 03:27PM
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I think Hemsky's back check on the Sharp shortie last night sealed his fate with me. You skate all the way back to not cover the guy? Don't get me wrong, I love Hemsky's skill and ability to play that puck possession game but, if his value coming back is a top 4D then make the move. If it's picks and prospects (suspects) - keep him!

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