Goalie In, Young Gun Out?

Jonathan Willis
October 16 2013 08:21AM

 

If TSN's top duo of Bob McKenzie and Darren Dreger are to be believed, Craig MacTavish is taking measured action in response to the Oilers' troubles early: assessing the trade market for goalies but not on the verge of making a deal. 

In the TSN story, McKenzie says that MacTavish has been working the phones since at least the weekend, scouring the league for available goaltenders and determining the cost of them. He also indicates that a deal likely isn't imminent, because teams don't like making moves this early. Dreger adds that Buffalo probably doesn't want to move Miller before Christmas and opines that "the Oilers are getting to the point where they realize they're going to have to give up one of their young guns."

The Goalies

There really isn't much surprise on the goaltending angle. 

First, MacTavish trying to get a read on who is available and what it might take to land them is an intelligent response to what has happened in Edmonton's net so far. Both NHL goalies have struggled. The third-stringer, Richard Bachman, has been impressive in Oklahoma City but his prior career makes him an uncertain option long-term. There's a decent chance that Devan Dubnyk responds if given a little more rope, particularly since this kind of four-game stretch isn't unheard of - even for good goaltenders. But the preparatory work needs to be done so that if the struggles continue a move can be made with no time lost.

Second, it isn't shocking that NHL teams are reluctant to deal goalies right now. What applies to Dubnyk (that he's been bad, but over too short a span to write him off) applies broadly across the league. Even teams getting strong performances early need to be wary; they might find themselves making a trade and then having nowhere to go when a hot streak ends.

The Young Gun

The question with Dreger's comment is how much of it is informed by knowledge of the inner workings of the Oilers' brain-trust and how much is his own read on the situation. 

As I see it, there is no pressing salary cap need for Edmonton to dump one of its young stars, and despite the strength at right wing there is no real place where positional constraints are going to force a move. Where it might make sense is if the price of acquiring a desperately needed piece at another position (read: a top defenceman in the prime of his career) is the trade of a young forward. Depending on the specifics, that might be a trade that makes the Oilers a better team, a case of moving strength for weakness rather than hastily mortgaging the future. 

The math on that trade always works out the same way. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is out; without him the Oilers don't have a top centre. Taylor Hall is out; without him the Oilers' left wing depth chart looks terrible. Sam Gagner is out; he just signed a deal with a no-trade understanding and he's hurt anyway. Justin Schultz is likely out, because defence is the position the Oilers need the most help at and there's still reason to hope Schultz can evolve into a player effective at both ends of the rink (he's 23 years old and has yet to play his 100th professional game).

If one of the young forwards is out, the position to move is right wing; that's the only place where there are two guys currently/likely to evolve into first line players. As a secondary point, it's also the only place where the number three man on the depth chart looks like he could be a pretty nice fit in the second slot for the next few years. If the Oilers are making a top forward for top defenceman swap, it's almost certainly Jordan Eberle or Nail Yakupov leaving town.

But nothing in the TSN report indicates such a move is imminent; McKenzie doesn't talk about it at all and it's a sure thing that Edmonton isn't moving an Eberle or a Yakupov for a mediocre goaltender or a pending UFA, the two descriptors that fit all the players actually mentioned by name in the report.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
Avatar
#1 filthymotherpucker
October 16 2013, 11:09AM
Trash it!
52
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

Need to trade yak now before he loses his value. Package him up with next years first and a dece prospect. Mac t needs to bring in some intangibles. Talk to Philly/ holmgren they are always up for a deal. Couturier, Simmonds, and l schenn. Maybe by then our tending will pick up. Fingers crossed.

Avatar
#2 Fresh Mess
October 16 2013, 09:55AM
Trash it!
31
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Imagine the package the Oilers could have gotten if they had dealt the number one pick instead of drafting Yakupov Smirnoff.

Avatar
#3 Rotten Ron
October 16 2013, 08:30AM
Trash it!
28
trashes
Cheers
29
cheers

I wouldnt rule out Schultz, like you said the oilers need defence and Mr. Schultz provides none.

Avatar
#4 S cottV
October 16 2013, 08:50AM
Trash it!
27
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

I know a polarizing figure, but I wonder if something involving Phaneuf and Reimer could be worked out?

Avatar
#5 Boourns99
October 16 2013, 08:32AM
Trash it!
25
trashes
Cheers
17
cheers

JONATHAN YOU SHOULD HIDE WANYE WILL WANT TO TAKE HIS WRATH ON SOMEONE. THAT YOU SHOULD MENTION EBERSQUEEE IN THE SAME BREATH AS TRADE IS BLASPHEMY.

Avatar
#6 DSF
October 16 2013, 10:45AM
Trash it!
25
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers
ghostofberanek wrote:

So Igor Kravchuk is the authority on who's valuable and who's not now?

I'm sure he knows a thing or two about hockey.

His assessment of Yak's game sounds pretty accurate to me and, based on him being benched for two games, it appears his NHL coach agrees.

Do you disagree?

Avatar
#7 DSF
October 16 2013, 12:03PM
Trash it!
25
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Mikey wrote:

Right, you do realize he has only played 55 or so games?

What do coaches say? I mean good coaches. "You can teach defense, but you can't teach offense."

In recent history I can think of two Russians (we will go with them becuase thats what Yak is) Ovechkin and Kovolchuk. Both of them, in their younger years had an issue with ______?

Answer: Using their linemates and playing D.

What did both of them eventually start doing?

Answer: They both started to use linemates more and back check more.

CRAZY!

Give the kid some time before you give up on him, like you did with Schultz, who you said would be a lock to sign in VAN. And Eakins, who you said would be a lock to sign in VAN.

You can only teach something if the student is paying attention.

Avatar
#8 DSF
October 16 2013, 10:34AM
Trash it!
22
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers
Jonathan Willis wrote:

I'm reasonably confident Yakupov has more value now, after a successful rookie season, than that first overall pick did.

I would suggest his value is dropping rapidly.

Here is an audio clip of Russian National team scout Igor Kravchuk ripping Yakupov:

http://proxy.autopod.ca/podcasts/chum/179/16630/kravchuk%20on%20yakupov.mp3

Avatar
#9 DSF
October 16 2013, 11:28AM
Trash it!
22
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers
Jonathan Willis wrote:

Should I go find an audio clip of somebody explaining that Hall's crap because he makes too many turnovers?

Here's the thing: young players look brilliant sometimes. They look like crap other times. Yakupov's had a poor start to the season, and he's been healthy-scratched; guess which swing we're in.

The alarming thing about Kravchuk's comment is his assessment that Yak has zero defense and his unwillingness to use his line mates....exactly what Eakins is seeing.

If you watch last night's game, you'll see plenty of both.

Of course Yak could change his game but so far it seems he's not getting the message.

Avatar
#10 Serous Gord
October 16 2013, 01:08PM
Trash it!
21
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
ed in edmonton wrote:

As usual you bring up a number of interesting points, however.

1. Cicra 2010 the Oil has both Penner and Hemsky as underperforming assets that both likely had trade value. Hemsky injured his shoulder (as usual) just before the trade deadline and Penner ended up being traded. I often wonder if Hmesky had done the unexpected and not get injured, if a different result may have occurred. I said at the time that 5$million for Hemsky was a gross overpay and have seen nothing to change my mind. Having said all that I don't see how buying him out last summer would have helped the Oil this year. You are taking a huge risk in buying him out on speculation that you will find something better to do with the money, there are no guarantees when signing FAs.

2. Its hard to fault Eakins. Other than in goal the Oil are playing much better this year. I grant that the jury is still out on the swarm defence, but other than in goal the Oil are playing better than they did last year.

3. Every journey starts with a single step, so if they can address a need one at a time why not? Isn't that how the Leafs rebuild has progressed far outpacing the Oil?

They should hav traded hemsky rather than signing him. Failing that MacT should have bought him out and used the free cap room to have more freedom to trade for a player who has a higher cap hit than what he sends back.

Eakins may one day be a fine nhl coach. But the oil has enough unproven elements to deal with already - adding an unproven coach using unproven tactics was a big mistake. And I think they are playing worse than they would under a proven conventional coach. I am arguing that Klowe and company were loath to get one - hence the chirade of interviewing proven nhl coaches for an ASSISTANT coaching role answering to a rookie coach in Krueger (only 48 games experience) - because they don't want anyone of stature in the league inside asking questions...

I am all for making steps to progress - as long as it doesn't retard our progress towards winning the cup. Trading now - when we have no cap room - when in another year we will have plenty - would require the unloading of one of the stars - gagner and hemsky are not going to work. So let's sit and wait.

Avatar
#11 DoubleA
October 16 2013, 11:53AM
Trash it!
19
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

Sign Dipietro cheap and see what happens on a new team

Avatar
#12 vince andrusiak
October 16 2013, 08:38AM
Trash it!
18
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

There were reports of Edmonton looking to trade with Philly. Names on Phillie included Couturier, Carlee, Simmonds. On Edmonton, there was Take and Hemsky.

I read to separate reports on this last night. Did anyone else hear about these, as I can't recall the source.

Avatar
#13 Racki
October 16 2013, 09:18AM
Trash it!
17
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

Don't see it happening, but would love to see the Oilers move their 1st plus Yak (sorry) in a package that nets them a solid starter and all around D. Wishful thinking though. In that kinda of deal I also imagine a lot of salary would come this way.

Avatar
#14 pkam
October 16 2013, 11:15AM
Trash it!
17
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

If we are willing to give up one of young kids for a goalie, I'll will not consider Miller.

Why not talk to the Devils, start the negotiation with Yak and Dubnyk for Schneider and a 2nd/3rd in 2014. Devils get a sniper that they desperate need and an average goalie. Sounds like win-win to me.

If it work out, not only do we get Schneider at the end, it would be fun to watch Gillis response when we play the Canucks.

Avatar
#15 Ari Gold
October 16 2013, 03:14PM
Trash it!
17
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

The DSF hate train is a bit too long. He's not wrong. Ease up fellow Oiler virtual-brass. There are very real reasons the Oil have been a garbage franchise for the past 20 years.

I think trading Yak & Ebs would be a poor idea as Hemmer is gone after this year. I'd trade picks of Minor Leaguers. I think the top 6 is agree at top 6 (with Gags). Unless you're grabbing a big tough power forward with hands, leave it alone.

As for goaltending, we just need an average tender, like Crawford.

This team is painful to watch right now....

Avatar
#16 Bloodsweatandoil
October 16 2013, 10:51AM
Trash it!
16
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

I wish they would just do what it takes already! When teams do not win, changes are always imminent.Again,the Oilers were not supposed to be crappy this year,but unforseen bad goaltending and a new coach with awkward philosphies have sent us south spiralling fast. I blame the new coach for the mess of our top two lines and I blame the management for our goaltending woes. It has generally been accepted that in the last 3 years, Dubnyk has been allowed to let in those one or two soft goals per game;and that Hall, Eberle, Nugent Hopkins, MPS, Hemsky, Horcoff and now Yakupov will make up those goals against with goals for. Combined with that truth, is another issue of sub-par defense. My point is,that the more things have seemed to change, they have only stayed the same for the last 3 years and have gotten worse fast. Management have put themselves in the corner with this neverending rebuild and the only way out is to trade the unthinkable for the proper pieces. I for one, am tired of waiting...Oilers! Sh%t or get off the pot!!!!

Avatar
#17 vincheese
October 16 2013, 08:40AM
Trash it!
14
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@vince andrusiak

Sorry Take = Eberle. Damn autocorrect on my phone.

Avatar
#18 Randaman
October 16 2013, 01:42PM
Trash it!
14
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Racki wrote:

Don't see it happening, but would love to see the Oilers move their 1st plus Yak (sorry) in a package that nets them a solid starter and all around D. Wishful thinking though. In that kinda of deal I also imagine a lot of salary would come this way.

funny that when a trade gets mentioned the trash button goes ballistic. Do you all actually think that all of a sudden this small team is going to make a 180deg turnaround? I don't get it. A trade at some point of one of the so called fab five or six has to happen. Everyone says Pittsburgh did it and Chicago did it but they had the luxury of drafting WAY better players than Hall, Eberle, RNH or Yak. No disrespect but those are the facts.

Avatar
#19 DSF
October 16 2013, 02:08PM
Trash it!
14
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
dangilitis wrote:

Hey DSF. How's Nichushkin working out? Looks like he has as many NHL points so far as Nurse...

Haven't watched a Dallas game yet but he seems to be struggling a bit after a great pre-season:

"He’s managed just one shot on goal through his first four contests despite averaging more than 14 minutes of ice time per game. Lane MacDermid will take Nichushkin’s place int he lineup.

This is the second big-name youngster to get the press box here in the third week of NHL action. The Edmonton Oilers created a bit of controversy for themselves by scratching Nail Yakupov for two games. Nichushkin’s benching seems like an honest attempt to give the rookie a fresh start though, as opposed to a coach trying to shock him team to a victory or two.

We’ll see Nichushkin back out on the ice soon enough. He’s impressed with his work ethic and commitment so far, and he’s not likely to let this drag him down too badly."

http://fansided.com/2013/10/15/dallas-stars-to-scratch-valeri-nichushkin-against-colorado-avalanche/

Avatar
#20 Tim in Kelowna
October 16 2013, 09:15AM
Trash it!
13
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

I'm glad we're finally at the point where we can all seriously discuss this happening.

I'm a fan of Yak, but he would be the odd man out as far as I'm concerned. Eberle has developed nice chemistry with Hall and RNH, and Yak might even have more value because he has years left on his entry level contract.

It seems unlikely that the Oilers can find any team to give up their #1 goalie*. So it would seem to me that if MacT is thinking about unloading one of his high value assets, it would be for a stud d-man. Even then, I doubt guys like Subban, Pietrangelo or Ekman Larssen are available. That seems to leave one name: Shea Weber.

* JW, this summer it sounded like Lundquist was unhappy in NY. If contract talks are still sour, is it possible that is the fit MacT is looking for?

Avatar
#21 crobar
October 16 2013, 10:31AM
Trash it!
11
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

how good does habby look now?? it may have been a big mistake not to re-sign him. it would have taken the pressure off of doobie. no one could ever accuse habby of being out of shape...... but this is monday morning quarterbacking.

Avatar
#22 ubermiguel
October 16 2013, 08:42AM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
43
cheers

Everyone read that mc79 link and calm the f#$% down! MacT is working the phones like a good GM should and Dubnyk is going to regress to his mean (.917) which is a solid NHL goalie. Unless of course the fans ride him like a rented mule and destroy his confidence forever.

Avatar
#23 Spydyr
October 16 2013, 08:54AM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
31
cheers
ubermiguel wrote:

Everyone read that mc79 link and calm the f#$% down! MacT is working the phones like a good GM should and Dubnyk is going to regress to his mean (.917) which is a solid NHL goalie. Unless of course the fans ride him like a rented mule and destroy his confidence forever.

If you are a goalie that lets fans ruin your confidence. Then you were not much of a goalie to begin with.

Avatar
#24 Czar
October 16 2013, 09:15AM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

I'd like to see MacT try to do a deal with the Wild for Harding,sh!t even Kuemper would be an upgrade at this point. The Wild have done well at drafting goalies and they might be persuaded, Might be.

Avatar
#25 S cottV
October 16 2013, 09:46AM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

@Rotten Ron

I understand the downside but Phaneuf is a legit top 2 d man, has a lot of physical presence, is a local guy who may not mind playing here at a reasonable cost and the Leafs may be willing to part with him. If he could be influenced to play more within himself, maybe the giveaways and unneccesary hits that cause odd man counter attacks - become manageable? As for Reimer, he may just need a fresh start and perhaps a Dubnyk / Reimer tandem - going with whoever is playing best might work. Again - Leafs may be willing to part with Reimer.

Avatar
#26 Serious Gord
October 16 2013, 12:19PM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers

Fans need to keep their eye on the ball.

1. It should never ever have come to this. Hemsky should have been dealt before he was signed to that ridiculous contract. Ditto Sam gagner to make room for the fleet of #1s the oil picked up. Both of those moves were not made because of management loyalties in spite of the good hockey sense both moves made. Couple that with resting all hope on dubnyk despite ample proof that he was not as good as his stats indicated.

2. We now have a coach who was hired without a proper search and who we are now stuck with who implements unorthodox defensive and other tactics that no one else in the league uses. This is not a team that should be experimenting with coaching styles (deepak Krueger proved that) yet oiler management couldn't stand having a prominent coach who wasn't part of the circle of friends, come in to run this team in a conventional, proven manner.

3. The weaknesses of this team are extensive and deep. Fixing them by dealing one of the bright lights in mid-season (with zero cap room to work with) is a fools game that will cost far more in the long run than the short term results it delivers. Unless the short term result desired is to save your job - which it clearly is for KLowe and MacT and now, Eakins.

So as much as I understand that fans want action. They need to stay focused on one thing: The CUP. And inaction now regarding the roster gets us closer to that goal.

Action that removes the rotting pieces of sycophantic fruit that is oiler management - that a failed season will impel their removal - is the route to take to shorten the time and blood and sweat required to win the CUP.

So stop clamouring for a trade and start howling for the termination of Kevin Lowe's employment as president of hockey ops. NOW IS THE TIME to apply pressure on Katz.

Avatar
#27 Spydyr
October 16 2013, 08:49AM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers
Jonathan Willis wrote:

A goalie drafted last year would take five years to arrive.

Should they have snagged one in the later rounds? I would have been good with that; I support taking the best available goalie just outside the top-100 every year. But it didn't get much negative feedback because the time frame is so long and the odds of success with any goalie pick so bad (particularly in the 2013 Draft).

Unless your drafting Grant Fuhr or a goalie very early in the first round it goes without saying the goalie would take time to develop.

This was not about addressing todays problem it was about addressing tomorrows problems before they happen. Also know as foresight. Something sorely lacking here in the last three decades.

Avatar
#28 DSF
October 16 2013, 02:16PM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Racki wrote:

Did we forget the work that Cliff "the cleaner" Fletcher did before the Leafs brought Burke in?

Yeah, no doubt.

11 months of trading assets for nothing and signing Jeff Finger.

Tambelliniesque in its effectiveness.

Avatar
#29 Spydyr
October 16 2013, 08:39AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
13
cheers

One would think a team with no real goalie prospect would have taken a goalie the last draft.

When this was mentioned at draft time it received a lot of negative feedback. It is sad when a second tier fan notices issues before the "braintrust" does.

This is turning into the rebuild without a plan.

Avatar
#30 Oiler Al
October 16 2013, 08:42AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
19
cheers

And, no other GM, wants Lowe's golden haired boy Hemsky!!!

While most successful teams build from the backend out, Oilers were chasing Boys on the Bus, Vol 2.

Avatar
#31 Rama Lama
October 16 2013, 11:14AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers

I think at this stage putting Dubnyk back in net will achieve nothing.........he needs some steady playing time and the logical place for him to find his timing would be on the farm.

I'm not sure this is possible given his contract, but putting him back in net for the Oilers and having a bad goal early may sink any confidence he has left. At this stage trading for a goalie and defenseman would be foolish.........every GM smells blood and would take advantage of situation.

We played a much better game against the Penguins.........I hope this continues a win could change everything. I think eventually that Eakins will have to address how effective the SWARM is in the NHL and make some changes. I for one refuse to believe that five of our top players had their skill eroded over one season........there has to be a more logical explanation.

Dallas may be a fitness fanatic and that has been well received by the media.......but his actual coaching skills are subject to more scrutiny than he has received so far.

Avatar
#32 Hinter
October 16 2013, 11:24AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

@Spydyr

The way they are playing it might be 7 more years before this team has a chance at playoffs. I love my Oilers but there is a breaking point, things are not looking good. Oilers need three things, Bigger players, Defence and a goaltender who can stop all the soft garbage goals.

Avatar
#33 Mikey
October 16 2013, 11:41AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
Rama Lama wrote:

I think at this stage putting Dubnyk back in net will achieve nothing.........he needs some steady playing time and the logical place for him to find his timing would be on the farm.

I'm not sure this is possible given his contract, but putting him back in net for the Oilers and having a bad goal early may sink any confidence he has left. At this stage trading for a goalie and defenseman would be foolish.........every GM smells blood and would take advantage of situation.

We played a much better game against the Penguins.........I hope this continues a win could change everything. I think eventually that Eakins will have to address how effective the SWARM is in the NHL and make some changes. I for one refuse to believe that five of our top players had their skill eroded over one season........there has to be a more logical explanation.

Dallas may be a fitness fanatic and that has been well received by the media.......but his actual coaching skills are subject to more scrutiny than he has received so far.

Right and the little fact he would have to go threw waiver.

I wonder if it is a coincidence that Fluery is PIT goalie, Fluery saw a therapizt, Dubnyk didn't play in PIT, Dubnyk zaw Fluery therapizt?

I purpozly left in zpelling mistake and didn't pluralize anything, zo zomeone could attack me. I am bored.

Avatar
#34 DSF
October 16 2013, 03:06PM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
Racki wrote:

Yakupov scratched... Travesty.. What are these clowns thinking? They will ruin this kid, if he didn't already suck so bad...

Nichushkin scratched... What a good move by Dallas! This will help out this young, future star!

From the guy that brought you great insight like "Whitney is not an NHLer" until the Panthers made a great move signing this pp specialist for cheap.

DSF logic.

You might want to drill a little deeper into why the players were scratched and, even more importantly, watch how they respond.

I wouldn't have signed Whitney for 5 bucks.

He's done and has only played 4 games for Florida.

Singing Gilbert fro cheap was pretty smart though.

He's second on the Panthers D in TOI.

How are Visnovsky and Nick Schultz working out?

Avatar
#35 madjam
October 16 2013, 11:41AM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

This goes back to GM thinking he had done enough to fill roster from within , and the premature movement of Nurse back to junior before he got a 9 game stint . Why magnify things worse by dealing away prematurely our youth ? Our new green Gm is struggling just like our new system and coaches . Lets not react in a harmful way here .

Avatar
#36 Tim in Kelowna
October 16 2013, 03:46PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

I think a lot of Oiler fans are overthinking this. The fact is the team sucks, mostly because they sucked last year and MacT didn't get enough done on the offseason.

Hypothetically, if you are starting an NHL team, it would make no sense to have your first 4 picks all be small/skilled forwards. Ideally you'd pick 2F 1D and 1G.

MacT needs to balance out the roster, it's as simple as that. Blockbuster trade is the only way to do it.

Avatar
#37 Spydyr
October 16 2013, 08:38AM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

double post see below

Avatar
#38 Metal&Oil
October 16 2013, 10:28AM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

I know he is far from NHL proven(2 NHL games) But if I'm the Oilers I go after Wings goalie Petr Mrazek. What would that cost us?

Avatar
#39 andrewmk20
October 16 2013, 12:03PM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

@Jonathan Willis

Do you think Ryan Miller is a viable candidate as a solution to Edmonton's problems if Dubnyk goes Steve Mason on the Oilers?

Avatar
#40 Ryan2
October 16 2013, 09:22AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers
RT wrote:

Instead of jumping on the misery band wagon like every one else i saw last nights game as a sign that the team is starting to grasp the new system . If they had played that way all year they would be above 500 even with bad goal tending. I believe they are going to start to win more then they lose in a game or two as this system is perfect for this team and its average size.

Rob Brown summed the SWARM up best in his post game comments. To paraphrase "It can work in Juniors, might work in the AHL, but in the NHL there will be skilled players that can beat the overcommitment and it leaves the high slot open for great chances."

Avatar
#41 DSF
October 16 2013, 02:02PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers
Mikey wrote:

I wouldn't say the leafs rebuild out paced the oilers. Didn't they go something like 10 years out of the playoffs?

The Leafs didn't "rebuild" at all.

Burke refused to burn it to the ground.

And they missed the playoffs 7 years in a row after losing in the conference semi finals in 2003-04.

Since Lowe was promoted to GM 13 years ago, the Oilers have made the playoffs 3 times.

Avatar
#42 RT
October 16 2013, 08:55AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
27
cheers

Instead of jumping on the misery band wagon like every one else i saw last nights game as a sign that the team is starting to grasp the new system . If they had played that way all year they would be above 500 even with bad goal tending. I believe they are going to start to win more then they lose in a game or two as this system is perfect for this team and its average size.

Avatar
#43 PSinghBSc
October 16 2013, 09:09AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

I'm quite concerned with all of this talk of moving Yak or Ebs. We all want to win now but systems take time to develop. I hope MacT doesn't press the panic button on a aging goalie on the backend of his prime to salvage a season. We have been rebuilding for ages, hate to lose talent like Yak or Ebs. Top 6 forwards are hard to come by.

Avatar
#44 Rotten Ron
October 16 2013, 09:12AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers
S cottV wrote:

I know a polarizing figure, but I wonder if something involving Phaneuf and Reimer could be worked out?

Is last years leader in giveaways and a late 20's goaltender prone to losing concentration and giving up soft goals things you think the oilers need more of?

Avatar
#45 Walter Sobchak
October 16 2013, 09:23AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

JW

How was that Glen Sather could keep this team in the playoff picture with half the budget and still find excellent players? Particularly goalie's?

He could always find jems in a coal mine.

I know money and buying a team has gone to his head and it's much easier to acquire UFA's and produce a playoff team when your city is Manhattan but Slats could get it done.

To acquire Miller or Elliot shouldn't cost a whole lot! Miller for one wants out, more importantly he wants to come west.......Am I missing something?

Again, so semblance of risk, were we not told this?

Avatar
#46 ubermiguel
October 16 2013, 10:04AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers
Spydyr wrote:

If you are a goalie that lets fans ruin your confidence. Then you were not much of a goalie to begin with.

He'll just recover his game elsewhere like so many other Oilers run out of town by the fanbase: Poti, Arnott, Lupul off the top of my head.

Avatar
#47 oilers2k10
October 16 2013, 10:54AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
41
cheers

Yakupov has 31 pts in 53 games in the NHL. About the same pace that most 1st overalls score at in their first 80 or so games..

He's exactly the type of Sniper Oilers have needed for years, but now that the Oilers have one fans aren't able to put up with the time it takes for the player to find his game.

He's not Stamkos, not Mogilny, not Bure, he's not Kovalchuk...yet. Just like those players, Yakupov will take a little time to get there, if Oilers fans can wait it'll be worth it, then we'll have one of a kind on this time, if not..go ahead trade him but you'll be sorry..bigtime. 40 plus goal scorers dont come around very often..Yakupov could very likely be one very soon.

Patience people.

Avatar
#48 Rama Lama
October 16 2013, 12:38PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Serious Gord wrote:

Fans need to keep their eye on the ball.

1. It should never ever have come to this. Hemsky should have been dealt before he was signed to that ridiculous contract. Ditto Sam gagner to make room for the fleet of #1s the oil picked up. Both of those moves were not made because of management loyalties in spite of the good hockey sense both moves made. Couple that with resting all hope on dubnyk despite ample proof that he was not as good as his stats indicated.

2. We now have a coach who was hired without a proper search and who we are now stuck with who implements unorthodox defensive and other tactics that no one else in the league uses. This is not a team that should be experimenting with coaching styles (deepak Krueger proved that) yet oiler management couldn't stand having a prominent coach who wasn't part of the circle of friends, come in to run this team in a conventional, proven manner.

3. The weaknesses of this team are extensive and deep. Fixing them by dealing one of the bright lights in mid-season (with zero cap room to work with) is a fools game that will cost far more in the long run than the short term results it delivers. Unless the short term result desired is to save your job - which it clearly is for KLowe and MacT and now, Eakins.

So as much as I understand that fans want action. They need to stay focused on one thing: The CUP. And inaction now regarding the roster gets us closer to that goal.

Action that removes the rotting pieces of sycophantic fruit that is oiler management - that a failed season will impel their removal - is the route to take to shorten the time and blood and sweat required to win the CUP.

So stop clamouring for a trade and start howling for the termination of Kevin Lowe's employment as president of hockey ops. NOW IS THE TIME to apply pressure on Katz.

Well put!

Eventually the tide will turn and all eyes will be where they belong........on Eakins and his unorthodox systems. I like the man but trying systems that are NOT regularly employed in the NHL is highly questionable.

I think Eakins should be in charge of player development, but coaching is a whole different thing. I think that he is figuring this out..........NHL players are too good to fall for the swarm as well as the opposition coaches who have made us pay.

Goaltending aside, we need a re-think before it is too late.

Avatar
#49 madjam
October 16 2013, 05:29PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Multiple problems have festered , but the brunt falls on Gm and coaches . Lowe is nothing more than a liason to Katz now , and has little much else to do in the running of the club . If Katz is fed up , he just needs to tell Lowe to find others whom might replace them actually running club now . MacT. has failed to deliver so far , and thus Eakins looks like he is in same boat . Present on ice personnel unlikely to make either look to good this season . How long should we wait seeing as it's already going on for nearly 8 years with this campaign ? They make changes but nothing that spells positive results of any value . I guess they are waiting for us to be like Leaf fans , and just accept being continually bad , and fill the turnstiles ? Do we really need or want a contender here , or just the occasional star player to watch ?

Avatar
#50 Cody anderson
October 16 2013, 09:13AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
16
cheers

I hope they do not make a panic trade. Unless you are getting an elite top 5 goalie the cost at this point is going to be too high for the minor upgrade you are going to get.

If we give Dubnyk some time and space he should revert back to at least league average, which is probably the best we are going to get at this point anyways.

A team that is not deep, that is comprised of 1/2 new guys, that has a rookie coach, introducing a new system, could very well take some time to gel. Sure this is the worst start any of us could have imagined, but it is very early. Gagner should be back next week, and although the points have not come as of yet the boys are not playing that badly.

Last night we were all around the net, and I would say we out-chanced one of the best teams in the league. One more goes in or we get one more save and we are looking at a potential upset.

Comments are closed for this article.