# GDB 9.0: IS IT TOO EARLY FOR A MUST WIN

Jason Gregor
October 19 2013 08:05AM

Is game nine of an 82-game season too early for a "must-win" scenario? Mathematically it is, but what about mentally for a team that has lost five straight and has yet to win a game in regulation?

The Oilers haven't played awful, but they also haven't played well enough to win, and you wonder about the psyche of an organization with a young team, a new coach and a new general manager if the losses continue to mount.

One theory suggests you can't make the playoffs in October, but you can miss them. Statistically the odds are against you if you are too far out of the playoff cutline at the end of October, and while many players try to focus only on the next game it is virtually impossible to be unaware of your team's place in the standings.

Elliotte Friedman pointed out that over the last seven full length NHL seasons, only three of 32 teams that were four points out of a playoff position on November 1st managed to play a postseason game. I was curious to see which teams made the comeback.

In 2011, the Boston Bruins were 4-7-0 with eight points, four back of the 8th place Lightning, but finished the season in 2nd place in the Eastern conference. The Bruins went 45-22-4 in their final 71 games.

In 2010, the Buffalo Sabres were 3-7-2 with eight points, four back of 8th place. They went 40-22-8 in their final 70 games to finish in 7th place in the east.

In 2006, the Calgary Flames were 3-7-1 and seven points back of 8th place, but they managed to finish in 8th place. The Flames went 40-22-9 in their final 71 games to make the playoffs.

History shows it will be very difficult for the Oilers to make the postseason, if they aren't close to the playoff cutline in 13 days.

The Oilers are already seven points out of 8th place with six games to play before November 1st. This afternoon's game isn't mathematically a "must-win" game, but in order to stay within four points of the playoff cutline they have to win at least four, likely five, of their next six games.

Some have stated fans need to remain calm and don't panic, however, the statistics paint a different picture. The Oilers need wins, and they need them quickly.

# LINEUP

Yakupov-RNH-Eberle
Hall-Arcobello-Perron
Smyth-Gordon-Hemsky
Brown/Gazdic-Acton-Jones

Head coach Dallas Eakins switched up his top two lines, by moving Nail Yakupov and David Perron away from their off wings. Eakins moved Yakupov to the left side, because he feels Yakupov can get more pucks to net, now that the puck won't be as exposed to the middle of the ice like it was on his off wing.

It will be interesting to watch and see if that is indeed the case for both Yakupov and Perron.

As I stated yesterday, Marc Arcobello's hockey sense has really impressed me. He's 2nd in the NHL in assists with eight, and despite not having any goals so far he has put himself in great positions to score. If he keeps playing like this it will be hard for Eakins to take him out of the top-six.

Smid-Petry
Ference-J.Schultz
Belov-N.Schultz/Grebeshkov

The final two pairings are a guess. Eakins might keep Belov and J.Schultz together, or he could switch things up. Denis Grebeshkov was recalled from OKC and he could play today. The Oilers didn't have a morning skate, so we won't know who is scratched until the warm up or moments before puck drop.

Dubnyk

He played his best game of the season in New York on Thursday, and if he plays like that today he'll give the Oilers a chance to win.

# OUR CRYSTAL BALL

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers have to win eventually don't they? They've won two straight in Ottawa, and they will make it three with a 4-2 victory.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Arcobello's surprising start to the season continues as he picks up two more helpers and takes over the NHL lead in assists with ten.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The PK doesn't allow a goal for the first time this season, and to cap off their perfect afternoon of penalty killing Nugent-Hopkins scores a shorthanded goal, on a nifty assist from Arcobello. The shortie comes with Ryan Jones in the penalty box for instigating a fight with Joe Corvo. Neither player had any PIMs prior to the dust up.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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

## Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required
#51 Citizen David
October 19 2013, 09:19AM

I agree if this losing continues the Playoffs won't be in the cards. But as of this moment they still can be. An interesting search would be what teams that made the playoffs in history every had an 8 game stretch with only 3 points in their season.

Slumps come and go we got one off the bat. As was pointed out in an earlier thread, the last time the Oilers made the playoffs they started the season 3-6-1. So if the Oilers won their next two games they will have the same record.

The problem with using percentages to determine playoff chances is that winning/ losing doesn't have a percentage chance of happening. Flipping a coin is 1/2 rolling a dice is 1/6. But the Oilers winning a game doesn't have a fixed chance. So there is no memory of past occurrences. If the Oilers win the next ten games all of a sudden it looks like they probably will make the playoffs.

To answer the question yes today is a must win. But I for one will never give up hope on the Oilers or start hating them. I stick with my team through it all and don't have to come running back to them pretending I never left once things start looking up.

October 19 2013, 10:49AM

Projectionism if 95 points required to make playoffs next year . On our current pace of 3 points in 8 games , I believe we are eliminated Jan. 14/2014 . If we lose next two games in regulation and still have only 3 points and keep that going , I believe we will be officially finished New Years Eve 2013 -this year (Happy New Year ). I wonder how far we might extend the cutoff date ?

#53 Chongler
October 19 2013, 10:50AM

The 05/06 Oilers started the season 3-6-1 Granted they had Pronger and Roli but still, it goes to show that nothing is written in stone.

#54 Hammers
October 19 2013, 10:58AM

Problem is Eakins questioning himself on trip to Ottawa re the Swarm (per his words).Moving Perron & Yak is just Fluff . They have both played off wing there whole carrers but Eakins know's best .I always thought in any sport the best coaches looked at there team then decided style of play or system to use but many like Eakins & Torts ++ have to play My Way . I think McT looked at what he had then decided so I'm wondering if he agrees with coch Eakins .

#55 Serious Gord
October 19 2013, 11:37AM
Smokey wrote:

I don't think we will see empty seats. The Oilers have the best fans in the league. What other small market team could live with this garbage for nearly 20 years.

Seasons tickets are almost entirely corporate-owned or written off by the small business / self-employed owners. The secondary market in these tickets has been drying up for a couple of years now. At some point giving them away could even be difficult. The northern Alberta area is one the strongest hockey markets in the world - making the reservoir for demand prodigious.

Will it decline to the point that they cannot be given away?

We shall see, but oiler management would be hard pressed to do a better job at emptying the building if they tried.

#56 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 11:42AM
Johe wrote:

The Oilers found someone better than Roli. His name is Dubnyk. You'll see.

Silly me , guess I was not paying attention the last nine years.Dubnyk was drafted in 2004 and is still not very good.

#57 Smokey
October 19 2013, 12:51PM

Braindead penalty for Smyth. Should of left it alone. Was obvious Person was pushed. Oilers penalty kill is too damn passive once again. Ottawa's puck movement is good, but not great, and Dubby's had to look good.

#58 Craig1981
October 19 2013, 01:07PM

I am enjoying Im a fan that didn't turn on Dubnyk right now. He looks great, and though its too early, might be making people wanting him out of town look foolish

#59 Mac962
October 19 2013, 02:49PM

The Gods were with us,

WTF kind of PP is that, this was a fluke is all as much as it pains me to say it.

#60 Thumby
October 19 2013, 08:17AM

My heart hopes we end up with 40+ wins and make the playoffs but logic says otherwise.

Could you imagine the euphoria if we did it?

#61 Bloodsweatandoil
October 19 2013, 08:53AM

To be the optimist and lose the negativity, I will turn on the lights in my Oiler themed Basement and get my goal light/horn ready! Ithink the Oilers will win this one!

#62 OilFaninVan
October 19 2013, 08:57AM

This is an absolute must win. The Oil can't play a 40 win season.

I don't know if I can take anymore hockey-pain.

#hangover

#63 Alsker
October 19 2013, 09:19AM
OilFaninVan wrote:

I don't know if I can bare to watch...

Fear not! Simply bring enough of your favorite artificial joy and you'll be fine. Besides Oil shock all of us with boring but pleasurable 4-3 victory. Go Oil!!!

#64 oilers2k10
October 19 2013, 09:21AM

I don't know how hungry the Sens are right now, but the Oilers are hitting that point on a road trip where they've been on the road long enough that all distractions off the ice are gone and it's just about playin the game..probably been extremely hard on themselves and cannot stand the thought of another loss. I bet the Oilers are the hungrier team today, doesn't always translate to wins but I'm sure that they play a solid 60 minutes today.

#65 MattL
October 19 2013, 09:39AM

@Serious Gord

Hey Gord, I feel bad for you, I think you take this hockey business more seriously than the rest of us. You know it's just meaningless entertainment, right? I mean, we all pretend it's important all the time, cuz it's fun, but it doesn't have to get you down. You CAN have fun and enjoy it if you want to. Team sucks, doesn't mean you have to be miserable and make everyone else around you miserable too.

What were you like in the 80's, mildly impressed? Reasonably satisfied?

#66 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 09:46AM
Citizen David wrote:

For everyone who wants to fire Lowe: Lowe has a good deal of responsibility for the hole that the Oilers fell into. (Not all of it but a good chunk) Perhaps he should have been fired for that but he wasn't. I got news for you he isn't the GM anymore. He just hired a new one that so far has done some pretty good things. (Gordon, Ference, Nurse, going hard after several goalies but refusing to be fleeced, backing Arcobello, bringing in defensive depth, clearing some deadweight, and not just sending away Hemsky for nothing) of course not everything a GM does will be good but Mac T has done well so far. If you expected a lot more you don't get GMing.

Back to Lowe: unless this horrible start last the whole season, which I don't think it will, he's not going anywhere for at the very least 2 seasons probably more like 3-4. Because that's how long a rope MacT will get to right the ship if things stay bad.

Of course there is also the possibility that the Oilers with all their young blossoming talent become a great team. And Lowe will still be here. So stop wasting your time griping about Lowe and come back to liking the Oilers cause right now Oilers fans seem as bad as Vancouver fans.

Lowe has been in charge of hockey operations for every year they missed the playoff.He was in charge of hiring and firing the GM.As far as hockey operations go the buck stops at his desk.Katz is an enabler allowing Lowe to screw up time and time again.

I'm sick of this "Oilers fans seem as bad as Vancouver fans" Bull.If Vancouver had the Oilers record since 2006 they would have lost half their fan base.The Oilers still sell out their games even though they have put the worst team in the NHL on the ice since 2006.

Oilers fans care and they are getting feed up but they still love their Oilers ,through thick and thin.It has been pretty thin for a long time now, so some fans are getting grumpy and venting.Let them vent they deserve to be able release some venom.It does make make you less of a fan because you care enough to be pissed when your team has become the "free space "on the NHL bingo card.When you play the other teams back-up goalie more then their starter it speaks volumes to how the rest of the NHL views the Oilers.

#67 Soccer Steve
October 19 2013, 09:49AM
Thomas Poopypance wrote:

Remember in NHL '98 when you could trade a 68 rated player for a 72 rated player for a 76 for an 80 for an 84 for an 88 and so on, all the way to Jagr?

So, why is Perron not a consideration to move? Eventually we'll have Crosby.

Comment of the year on last post! Thought you had to move up 2 overalls at a time though not 4. I miss the staois for seabrook trades. Why wont chicago play by the nhl 08 rules/

Appreciate the appreciation but you should name your sources. ;-)

#68 Serious Gord
October 19 2013, 09:55AM
Citizen David wrote:

I agree if this losing continues the Playoffs won't be in the cards. But as of this moment they still can be. An interesting search would be what teams that made the playoffs in history every had an 8 game stretch with only 3 points in their season.

Slumps come and go we got one off the bat. As was pointed out in an earlier thread, the last time the Oilers made the playoffs they started the season 3-6-1. So if the Oilers won their next two games they will have the same record.

The problem with using percentages to determine playoff chances is that winning/ losing doesn't have a percentage chance of happening. Flipping a coin is 1/2 rolling a dice is 1/6. But the Oilers winning a game doesn't have a fixed chance. So there is no memory of past occurrences. If the Oilers win the next ten games all of a sudden it looks like they probably will make the playoffs.

To answer the question yes today is a must win. But I for one will never give up hope on the Oilers or start hating them. I stick with my team through it all and don't have to come running back to them pretending I never left once things start looking up.

Is this a slump or the oil just a bad team with bad management and a sub par coach? I think the evidence is pointing towards the latter.

And it isn't a case of "hating" the oil but demanding corrective action to end this chronic failure syndrome.

The answer is obvious to almost everyone - including, I think, the very top levels of management. And those top levels having been in survival mode for sometime now - keeping friends and Favour-owers close in mgmt - to hell with the consequences on-ice.

And so it will go on and on - stumbling from squandered hope and failure to squandered hope and failure - that is the syndrome that is favoritism and cronyism.

So stop dividing oil fans into lovers and haters and unite to demand that the titular owner Mr. Katz - and to be sure he is only titular - we - the fans - Edmonton hockey fans - OWN this team- remove Kevin Lowe from his position of president of hockey ops.

#69 2004Z06
October 19 2013, 10:20AM
Reagan wrote:

This team needs am enigma...

I think you mean enema(sp)

#70 Gkpoil
October 19 2013, 11:34AM
Johe wrote:

The Oilers found someone better than Roli. His name is Dubnyk. You'll see.

Nice!!

Dubnyk is Markkanen caliber

#71 Smokey
October 19 2013, 12:15PM
Jason Gregor wrote:

In the article you'll see that Calgary made playoffs after being 7 points back at end of October. Very rare, but it happened once in last 7 years.

Gregor gets lucky about once every seven years also!!!

#72 Pat Quinn
October 19 2013, 12:26PM
Spydyr wrote:

Too funny.Pat Quinn is that you?

Just because I live in Vancouver and hae more Chins than Vancouver phone book doesn't mean I call myself the Wonger! Ottawa has BIG FUNCTIONAL TOUGHNESS throughout their line up!!! How did you know???

#73 Gkpoil
October 19 2013, 02:45PM
WONGER wrote:

Here come the Senators!!! Size and Toughness throughout their lineup and the KASSAsINATOR to boot!!! BIG, HUGE,BAD Defense and BIG Skilled and TOUGH forwards, even a Monstrous, Tough goalie!!! Boys against MEN again and Wonger smells another loss coming!!! Oh YEAH, HALL gets gooned and injured andNO RESONSE from OIL!!! GYRBA cheap shorted Stajan in pre-season and got DROPPED by zmCGRATTAN on his next shift!!! That is the difference between the Oil and the Flames!!! Where is BIG, BAD STEVE MACINTYRE? Where is GAZDUC??? Can we trade for MCGRATTAN or BIG JOHN SCOTT!!! PLEAS!EM!!

#74 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 02:45PM
Wax Man Riley wrote:

I hope not.

Karlsson is really good, but he's also like 5'9"

Oilers have enough puck movers and need some shutdown.

Do you think Ottawa would make that trade?

I'm not so sure they would.

#75 OilFaninVan
October 19 2013, 02:47PM
WONGER wrote:

Here come the Senators!!! Size and Toughness throughout their lineup and the KASSAsINATOR to boot!!! BIG, HUGE,BAD Defense and BIG Skilled and TOUGH forwards, even a Monstrous, Tough goalie!!! Boys against MEN again and Wonger smells another loss coming!!! Oh YEAH, HALL gets gooned and injured andNO RESONSE from OIL!!! GYRBA cheap shorted Stajan in pre-season and got DROPPED by zmCGRATTAN on his next shift!!! That is the difference between the Oil and the Flames!!! Where is BIG, BAD STEVE MACINTYRE? Where is GAZDUC??? Can we trade for MCGRATTAN or BIG JOHN SCOTT!!! PLEAS!EM!!

I smell a narcissist.

Dude, therapy.

October 19 2013, 03:03PM

Eberle (our best player thus far) takes over the game and leads the team onto victory . Dubbie does and Dubbie Do , yahoo . Time to restart planning the parade .

#77 Mikey
October 19 2013, 03:14PM
Spydyr wrote:

This is what is wrong with the Oilers the last few years.A guy takes a run at Halls knee and not one player on the ice does anything about it.Makes me want to puke, to many pussies on the team.Now it looks like Hall is out with a bad knee.

Don't be a homer, that was not a run at Halls knee.

#78 Mark B
October 19 2013, 03:23PM
Spydyr wrote:

A weak goal is a weak goal be it on the first shot or the forty-first shot.

That was a weak goal??????

#79 sizedoesmatter
October 20 2013, 06:54AM

Sorry robin taking a wide stance is exactly the same as sticking your leg out. He should be suspended.

#80 Johe
October 19 2013, 08:15AM

Oilers get over 30 shots, Yakupov gets on the scoresheet, Gazdic throws down with Kassian, and Eakins does at least one Bieber hair flip. Today the winning begins!!! Squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee

#81 15w40
October 19 2013, 08:23AM

How about the following defense pairings:

Ference/Petry Smid/Belov N Schultz/Grebeshkov

If Yak can benefit from watching from on high, then so can J. Schultz. But tell him to watch the other teams' defense - not the Oilers'.

How about trying to get RNH's line away from playing head to head with the other teams best offering for a game. Its hard to get the offense going for RNH and Yak if they are in their own end constantly.

On the bright side if the slide continues you have a legitimate reason to start drinking early afternoon on a Saturday.

Cheers!!

#82 DrunkGuyTy
October 19 2013, 08:31AM

Wasn't there a stat last year that gave us a brief glimpse of hope? Something to the effect of being in the playoff race by xx date indicated there was a high probability we would make the playoffs?

Maybe we can buck this stat too.

#83 Alsker
October 19 2013, 08:43AM
Spydyr wrote:

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: It is an afternoon game.The Oilers record in afternoon games is atrocious.Can't see that changing today.

~Always the optimist~ granted history has taught us a matinee game is nothing more than an opportunity to hear all the cliche excuses for another loss. If these early games are truly bias to teams than why do they still exist? @JG Since when has any game not been a must win here if we havn't been eliminated from post season?

#84 Loweblows
October 19 2013, 08:52AM

One win in 8 games and it took a shootout to win it-sad-here i started the season with such optimism and now I feel they are incapable of winning even one game-hate to give up hope but I have as I see no way this team will make the playoffs and quite honestly I see them in a race with Buffalo to finish last yet again-any big centermen available in the draft this year?

#85 Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate
October 19 2013, 08:56AM

Oh Yes, this is an

early season must-win game.

Better get it done.

#86 Citizen David
October 19 2013, 09:05AM

3-2 Oilers: Hall, J Schultz, and Perron with the Goals.

#87 dv.asteroid
October 19 2013, 09:11AM

Win. Hit. Play. Believe. Oilers! ( say these words into the universe, repeat aloud or in thought throughout game)( I ask this, for I cannot watch or listen, I'm working at women's prison, no contraband allowed). Believe.

#88 Ea Sports Statistics Guy
October 19 2013, 09:11AM
Thomas Poopypance wrote:

Remember in NHL '98 when you could trade a 68 rated player for a 72 rated player for a 76 for an 80 for an 84 for an 88 and so on, all the way to Jagr?

So, why is Perron not a consideration to move? Eventually we'll have Crosby.

Comment of the year on last post! Thought you had to move up 2 overalls at a time though not 4. I miss the staois for seabrook trades. Why wont chicago play by the nhl 08 rules/

You can still make those trades, you just need to use draft picks now. Or sign FA and use them. Ryan Whitney is a perfect example. #easports #itsinthegame

#89 Devolution
October 19 2013, 09:34AM

I live 11 time zones away, meaning those eastern games started at 4 am. I haven't missed a game in two years. When I crawl back into bed after the game ends at 06:30, my wife asks if they won. When I tell her shes says, "They don't deserve you".

She is of course correct, but it is a sickness.

#90 27Ginge
October 19 2013, 09:39AM

Oil get out played for forty minutes and go into the third down 2-0. Yakupov scores a natural hatty to steal a victory on his own. Caps it off by celebrating in a fashion that would make Joe Thornton cringe.

#91 Yaz
October 19 2013, 09:40AM

While I am in a bad mood anyway even before the game today about half of the losses are due to poor coaching and a new system which is needed . Eakins has not learned line changes or pairings worth a darn, constant changes and no consistency. The retention of Bucky and Smith is another disaster but I believe Eakins had no choice on that one. Finally we were good on the PK and PP last year, what went off the rails here, RNH, Hemsky, Hall, Ebs and the best forwards on the PK is NOT working period, use the grinders and quit adding to the best players playing time which has to wear them down in the course of the game chasing pucks in their own end which they are proving they don't do well, block nearly enough shots or finish any checks. Coaching needs to get their heads out of their asses, they are the main cause of this mess.

#92 Alsker
October 19 2013, 09:42AM
rob wrote:

Not going to be pretty,oil lose big this afternoon,but hope its enough to make mact make a bold trade

ps can we sit kevin lowe?or trade him

Sit Klowe...but he sits every game, on his throne in the pressbox overseeing his vast empire and flashing the rings of power for all to see.

#93 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 10:02AM
Devolution wrote:

I live 11 time zones away, meaning those eastern games started at 4 am. I haven't missed a game in two years. When I crawl back into bed after the game ends at 06:30, my wife asks if they won. When I tell her shes says, "They don't deserve you".

She is of course correct, but it is a sickness.

You sir are a true Oilers fan.Even though Lowe thinks you are a second tier fan.

Props to you!

#94 Mlcselli
October 19 2013, 10:02AM

Feeling optimistic. Today the winning streak starts . When the puck drops this afternoon, the Oilers are going to come out flying and give 60 minutes of playing hockey. They will get 50 shots on net. They will have 6 different guys scoring , with Yak scoring twice and Dubby gets the goose egg. Hope come alive today. Let's go Oilers!!!!!!!!!!!!

#95 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 10:04AM
Mlcselli wrote:

Feeling optimistic. Today the winning streak starts . When the puck drops this afternoon, the Oilers are going to come out flying and give 60 minutes of playing hockey. They will get 50 shots on net. They will have 6 different guys scoring , with Yak scoring twice and Dubby gets the goose egg. Hope come alive today. Let's go Oilers!!!!!!!!!!!!

Most of us don't start drinking until game time.Good for you getting a head start.

#96 Darrell
October 19 2013, 10:12AM
MattL wrote:

Hey Gord, I feel bad for you, I think you take this hockey business more seriously than the rest of us. You know it's just meaningless entertainment, right? I mean, we all pretend it's important all the time, cuz it's fun, but it doesn't have to get you down. You CAN have fun and enjoy it if you want to. Team sucks, doesn't mean you have to be miserable and make everyone else around you miserable too.

What were you like in the 80's, mildly impressed? Reasonably satisfied?

Dude - if you think it's just a game there are plenty of teams out there you can cheer for but the Oilers are not one of them. As someone already mentioned - it's a sickness .... GO OILERS !

#97 BaldOldMan
October 19 2013, 10:16AM

When an Oil fire starts, it burns hot and last as long as there is oil being supplied. You need to cut off the source to contain it. See you later Kevin Lowe. Your oily hands have kept this fire going.

#98 Spydyr
October 19 2013, 10:55AM
Chongler wrote:

The 05/06 Oilers started the season 3-6-1 Granted they had Pronger and Roli but still, it goes to show that nothing is written in stone.

They picked up Rollie later in the year because the goaltending sucked.Sound familiar?

We can only hope Mac-T can find another Rollie.

#99 JockSnifferKATZ
October 19 2013, 11:02AM
Smokey wrote:

The first lines a head scratcher. Having one winger outta position, but two? I understand the reasoning, maybe its this backwards thinking that will turn around Yak.

Grebby on the backend could pay dividends or blow up. Schultz Sr. been ok the past bit, and he's an assistant captain. I think he continues to draw in.

Arco has shown he's NHL quality in terms of ability. Been a bright spot, and arguably the Oilers best forward. Hope he gets the assist hatty tonight and takes over the assist lead. I'm fine with him going 0-82 this year. Other the Hertl train in SJ, and Monahan you might have to have Arco in the Calder consideration. I hope this is the year we win the Calder.

You should learn to read. Both Yak and Perron were playing on their off wings. Now they are being switched to play on their "correct" sides. For example, Yak, who is left handed, was playing on the right wing. Now he will be playing on his left wing. Comprehende???

#100 Dave
October 19 2013, 11:10AM
JockSnifferKATZ wrote:

You should learn to read. Both Yak and Perron were playing on their off wings. Now they are being switched to play on their "correct" sides. For example, Yak, who is left handed, was playing on the right wing. Now he will be playing on his left wing. Comprehende???

Why would the coach play them on their off wing in the first place ? Just a question. I do not know the answer.