TAMBELLINI'S TAKE

Robin Brownlee
January 06 2013 05:15PM

I went out on a limb (critics will say I sawed it off) by suggesting a shortened season would benefit the Edmonton Oilers two weeks ago and went as far as to say my gut-feeling was that they'd have enough gas in a sprint rather than a marathon to make the playoffs for the first time in six seasons.

While we'll obviously have to see that play out (not even knowing as of writing this if the season will be 48 or 50 games) and there'll be plenty written about that post-season possibility as writers bash off season previews and prepare for an abbreviated training camp, GM Steve Tambellini met with the media today and answered a couple questions connected to my bold (foolish?) prediction. The entire interview is here.

Here's a quick hit from Tambellini's availability:

THE CORE

Tambellini was asked how much of an advantage the Oilers might have because core players -- Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, to name just three – have been playing at a high level in the AHL.

"Well, not only just the core players. The one thing I remember from the last work stoppage, I remember – I was managing Team Canada – and Ken Holland and I were sitting in the stands watching the first skate and the players who had been playing in Europe versus the players who hadn't been playing.

"The first couple days, there was quite a difference, so . . . I think there is an advantage for any player that's been playing whatever league for sure."

THE SPRINT

Tambellini was asked if a shorter season would be a benefit to the Oilers, given the aforementioned young core players, not to mention the likes of Ales Hemsky, Sam Gagner and Nail Yakupov, have been playing.

"I think it can be, but I think that's how most coaches and general managers are trying to position their team, hoping that most of them were playing. We've had a good amount of our young core playing for sure.

"I love the fact that they were playing in the American Hockey League, which is the same type of hockey as in the National Hockey League. It was tough for them, it was grinding for them and they had to work for everything they got. Their stats were outstanding.

"I was proud the way they brought themselves in the dressing room as a teammate. Now, it's time for them to get back to Edmonton. I was very happy with the players who played for the Oilers last year, how they contributed on and off the ice in (Oklahoma City)."

More, much more, to come.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

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A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#51 dougtheslug
January 06 2013, 08:45PM
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DSF wrote:

6-3 is a hammering anyway you want to slice it.

The Wolves haven't had the Canucks best four players in the lineup all season.

Put the Sedins, Kesler and Bieksa in the Wolves lineup for almost half a season and the Barons would be so far in the rear view mirror it would make your head spin.

The Wolves top scorer is some guy named Brett Sterling...I expect the Sedins may have fared a little better in the AHL.

LOL.

It will be so nice now, that instead of your fantasies and loose interpretation of reality, we get to start to deal with the facts as they unfold. Good luck with your Canucks. Sounds like they have a lot of great players developing down on the farm.

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#52 DSF
January 06 2013, 08:46PM
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Mikey wrote:

We have gone threw this before. The Sedins are a lot older. More experience. Plus what did they do at this age? ie third year in the league. This year will be a telling year for the oilers even if its only 50 games.

What happened 10 years ago is about as important as what socks you were wearing then.

In other words, not at all.

Hockey isn't about yesterday or tomorrow, it's about now.

For example, how many current Oilers were on the roster when the Oilers went to the finals in '06?

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#53 DSF
January 06 2013, 08:49PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

It will be so nice now, that instead of your fantasies and loose interpretation of reality, we get to start to deal with the facts as they unfold. Good luck with your Canucks. Sounds like they have a lot of great players developing down on the farm.

Why would they need "great players developing down on the farm" when they already have great players in the NHL?

Have you become so addicted to the draft that you can't see that there are other ways to acquire players?

The Oilers were gifted Justin Schultz...the Canucks signed Jason Garrison.

Over the next 2-3 seasons I would wager Garrison will be the better defenseman.

Watch those"facts"unfold.

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#54 Darrell
January 06 2013, 08:55PM
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Darrell wrote:

The Sedins would have gotten speed bagged (again) in the AHL ... they have zero grit and it shows in the playoffs every year.

Sorry - that was for DSPs Sedins AHL aspirations ..... Sedins have Rockets and President trophies but no CUPS! That's all the matters at the end if the season....

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#55 Mikey
January 06 2013, 08:57PM
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DSF wrote:

Why would they need "great players developing down on the farm" when they already have great players in the NHL?

Have you become so addicted to the draft that you can't see that there are other ways to acquire players?

The Oilers were gifted Justin Schultz...the Canucks signed Jason Garrison.

Over the next 2-3 seasons I would wager Garrison will be the better defenseman.

Watch those"facts"unfold.

Your probably right. But after those 2-3 years it will be Schultz for the next 8.

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#56 Darrell
January 06 2013, 08:57PM
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Quintana wrote:

Sure.

1) EDM

2) STL

3) LAK

4) VCR

5) DET

6) CHI

7) SJS

8) COL

9) NSH

10) CAL

11) DAL

12) MIN

13) PHX

14) CLB

15) ANA

Fixed , now lets drop the puck!!!!!!

BEAUTY! Can Minny buyout both Parise and Suter ;)

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#57 revingev
January 06 2013, 09:01PM
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Agree Robin and understand its the HUNCH, your referring to. If I was to take a educated guess based on shortened season, more travel for Detroit and some other teams having very few players active , I am saying they still finish between 9th-12th overall in the west. I am hoping playoff but its only a feeling as you mention based on some assumptions.

All I know is the Top 10 provides some pretty good centermen in the draft again even if a year or two away.

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#58 Mikey
January 06 2013, 09:02PM
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DSF wrote:

What happened 10 years ago is about as important as what socks you were wearing then.

In other words, not at all.

Hockey isn't about yesterday or tomorrow, it's about now.

For example, how many current Oilers were on the roster when the Oilers went to the finals in '06?

Exactly, so you can't compare the Sedins in the AHL now. They have more experience.

And I like how you gloss over other people's points, and blast their logic. But will then use that same logic.

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#59 DSF
January 06 2013, 09:09PM
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Mikey wrote:

Your probably right. But after those 2-3 years it will be Schultz for the next 8.

So, you can accurately predict which defensemen the Canucks will have three years from now?

Perhaps you should consider how the Canucks acquired the best shutdown D in the league.

Hint: they didn't draft him.

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#60 DSF
January 06 2013, 09:09PM
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Darrell wrote:

BEAUTY! Can Minny buyout both Parise and Suter ;)

Why would they buy out two of the best players in the league?

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#61 DSF
January 06 2013, 09:10PM
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Mikey wrote:

Exactly, so you can't compare the Sedins in the AHL now. They have more experience.

And I like how you gloss over other people's points, and blast their logic. But will then use that same logic.

I only gloss over points that are puerile.

Look it up.

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#62 Quintana
January 06 2013, 09:24PM
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DSF wrote:

Why would they buy out two of the best players in the league?

Eberle>>>>>>>>Parise...and Sutter is the next redden now GTFO.

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#63 David
January 06 2013, 09:25PM
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DSF wrote:

So, you can accurately predict which defensemen the Canucks will have three years from now?

Perhaps you should consider how the Canucks acquired the best shutdown D in the league.

Hint: they didn't draft him.

I didn't know the Canucks have Chara.

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#64 Mikey
January 06 2013, 09:25PM
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DSF wrote:

So, you can accurately predict which defensemen the Canucks will have three years from now?

Perhaps you should consider how the Canucks acquired the best shutdown D in the league.

Hint: they didn't draft him.

I don't need to know who Van will have, just know in a few years Schultz will be a sublime offensive d man.

Is it the same way they got Schultz?

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#65 DSF
January 06 2013, 09:27PM
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Quintana wrote:

Eberle>>>>>>>>Parise...and Sutter is the next redden now GTFO.

Good grief.

Fanboy delusions.

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#66 David
January 06 2013, 09:33PM
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DSF wrote:

Good grief.

Fanboy delusions.

I wouldn't be suprised if Eberle has a better season than Parise this year and the next many years. And if he's not it will be close. I don't think Suter will be the next redden though. But it will be interesting to see how he does without weber and how weber does without him.

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#67 David
January 06 2013, 09:41PM
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But hey fans can dream right?

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#68 Ryan2
January 06 2013, 09:45PM
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DSF wrote:

So, you can accurately predict which defensemen the Canucks will have three years from now?

Perhaps you should consider how the Canucks acquired the best shutdown D in the league.

Hint: they didn't draft him.

And who would that be?

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#69 Harlie
January 06 2013, 09:46PM
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David S wrote:

You've gotta be...are you kidd...There's no way this is rea...

Holy cow. *Brain locks up*

ROFL!

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#70 DSF
January 06 2013, 09:58PM
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dougthslug wrote:

Like I said, it will be nice when we can compare what you say to reality.By the way, if Kesler had been on the Wolves roster this year he would have had zero points.Because he is injured.And not likely to play this year.To bad Canucks don't have much on the farm to replace him.

You know what hypothetical means, right?

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Three key players in order for us to have a chance at playoffs.

1. Dubdy - needs to become a legit #1 2. Whitney 3. J Schultz

If Dubby plays like a #1, then we'll be battling for a spot. If either Whitney or J Schultz play to their potential, coupled with Dubbys play, then we make playoffs. If all three play well, look out!

Me thinks we make playoffs but I like the koolaid.

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#72 Rocket
January 06 2013, 11:02PM
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Shavis wrote:

We spend much time applauding procurement via the draft in years past, but how much of our success (or possibly, lack thereof) will be contributed to the oilers investment in a team at the AHL level? I think we will all look back at this development chapter while we watch Eberle hoist Stanley. Agree?

Yup

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#73 Oilertown
January 07 2013, 12:10AM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

Pardon me, but isn't this becoming a trend that the canucks take a player out of florida after one good season only for him to become the goat of the team within 2 years?

Ya and the same thing will happen with Garisson he will revert back to being his old DFD with very little offence. DSF thinks he is Souray 2.1 haha will see.

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#74 nuge2nail
January 07 2013, 02:01AM
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Oiler Domination To Follow

Nick Schultz will solidify the PK and the defence. Justin Schultz will solidfy the PP and help the offense put up points.

Yakupov will provide much needed secondary scoring, and Hartkainen will add grit to the third line.

If Dubey shows hes a true #1 we will find ourselves in the playoffs. If he faulters - welcome Seth to the Oilers.

Im drinking the Koolaid- im thinking Domination to Follow...

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#75 Rama Lama
January 07 2013, 09:22AM
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Yea there is an advantage for players like Hall, Eberle, RNH.......but how long does this advantage last? Maybe a couple of games according to Tamby.

How about the guys who have not played being fresher towards the end of the season? How much of an advantage is that? Maybe by then Hall, Ebs, and RNH will be tired?

I think this advantage that everyone talks about is over stated.

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#76 David
January 07 2013, 10:10AM
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DSF wrote:

How often does a free agent veteran defenseman sign a contact with a new team?

Often.

How often does a drafted kid get to pick and choose which team he signs an ELC with?

Very rare.

One of these is not like the other.

That doesn't change the fact Schultz was a free agent just like Garrison was. They both got to choose the team they wanted to go to. The difference was 29 teams wanted Schultz making him harder to acquire.

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#77 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 07 2013, 10:40AM
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You guys need to stop falling into the DSF zero-sum trap.

There is never a compelling reason to imply that one player's success = another's failure.

Only in the rare one-on-one hockey events -- a forward schooling a defenseman for example -- does this even make sense. And, even then we are talking about a fractional sample size.

The truth of the matter is there will always be lots of players. Some of them very good to great. People will always disagree about who is better and have their own preferences and occasionally even be able to give an account of their preference.

This is all very normal and interesting.

What is irritating and ridiculous is when these conversations devolve into DSF-land, i.e., two players are pitted against one another (often arbitrarily) in stark contrast in order to imply that there is a world in which these two players exist apart from the rest of the world stuck in a never ending zero-sum game of one-on-one.

It is a wholly false and asinine reality to construct.

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#78 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 07 2013, 10:47AM
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David wrote:

That doesn't change the fact Schultz was a free agent just like Garrison was. They both got to choose the team they wanted to go to. The difference was 29 teams wanted Schultz making him harder to acquire.

The real difference between these players, their contracts and the method in which they were acquired is "media attention."

Schultz "enjoyed" an absurd amount of coverage because of his unique contract situation.

This difference tells us very little about the two players' reasonable projections, the mgt. of the two teams, or the quality of the two teams.

They are both very talented, young D prospects/players any team would seek out with vigor. Both the Oil and the Nucks are lucky to have them.

But we've reached the point of maximal absurdity in forcing this comparison (IMO).

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#79 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
January 07 2013, 12:01PM
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DSF wrote:

How often does a free agent veteran defenseman sign a contact with a new team?

Often.

How often does a drafted kid get to pick and choose which team he signs an ELC with?

Very rare.

One of these is not like the other.

and the very rare case picked edmonton.

crazy knows no bounds.

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#80 Max Powers - Team HME Evans
January 07 2013, 12:43PM
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DSF wrote:

How often does a free agent veteran defenseman sign a contact with a new team?

Often.

How often does a drafted kid get to pick and choose which team he signs an ELC with?

Very rare.

One of these is not like the other.

Oh DSF, you're so smart.

P.s. I accidentally props'd that fool trying to hit reply, so there's not anyone insane enough to agree with him. Just a mistake.

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#81 pelhem grenville
January 08 2013, 01:50PM
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...David S

...it's the big brain thing I spoke of earlier

EDM even beats the Round 1 losers listed...

is there bloody anything he can't do?

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#82 pelhem grenville
January 08 2013, 02:33PM
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...of all the tens of thousands there the day of the night of the infamous canucks fan riots...

copy paste this...it's a gigapan image so everyone in the picture is recognizable, as u scroll the image zooms larger and larger : http://www.gigapixel.com/image/gigapan-canucks-g7.html

and ask ... Is DSF in the crowd ?

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