MAD TROMBONE: NAME THAT TUNE

Robin Brownlee
October 29 2013 10:20PM

Near the end of tonight's 4-0 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs at Rexall Place, somebody Tweeted a picture of Edmonton Oilers' coach Dallas Eakins staring off into space, looking stunned, distant, dazed.

Likewise, I'm sure, were many of the fans who filed out of the rink after yet another loss, although I'm guessing just as many headed to the parking lot flat-out pissed off after seeing more of the same old, same old.

As they should be. New season or not, new coach or not, injuries or not, the latest edition of the Oilers Selling Hope Campaign hasn't even hit November yet and it sure looks from where I sit like it's come off the rails – again.

"They're banged up. They're tired," post-game radio host Rob Brown offered as he and Bob Stauffer did a post-mortem on the latest stiff. Brown, to be fair, is probably right. Still, tired beats sick and tired, which it seems a substantial portion of the fan base is after seeing their team drop to 3-9-2.

VENTING

A cross sampling from fans here at Oilersnation and Twitter:

SPYDYR: "The Oilers poop the bed and still over 250 comments. This Management team does not deserve fans like us."

REXHOLEZ: "So are we throwing the season away again or are we getting a defenceman this week?"

#SIXRINGS: “And lastly I’ll say that there’s one other guy in hockey today that is still working in the game that has won more Stanley Cups than me. So I think I know a little bit about winning, if there’s ever a concern.” — Kevin Lowe.

BY THE NUMBERS

The Oilers are 3-9-2 for eight points, a total that ties them for third-worst in franchise history through the first 14 games of a season.

The 1993-94 Oilers hold the mark for ineptitude at 2-11-1 for five points under Ted Green on the way to a 25-45-14 record and 64 points. The 1990-91 Oilers are next, going 2-10-2 for six points under John Muckler on the way to 37-37-6 for 80 points. The 1979-80 Oilers under Glen Sather debuted in the NHL at 2-8-4 for eight points, finishing at 28-39-13 for 69 points.

Here's Edmonton's record through 14 games in the seven seasons they've missed the playoffs since getting to Game 7 of the 2006 Stanley Cup final (as season in which they went 7-6-1 for 15 points in the first 14 games).

2012-13: 6-5-3 15 points

2011-12: 9-3-2 20 points

2010-11: 4-8-2 10 points

2009-10: 7-6-1 15 points

2008-09: 7-6-1 15 points

2007-08: 5-9-0 10 points

2006-07: 7-6-1 15 points

NEXT YEAR BECKONS ALREADY

After hosting Detroit Saturday, the Oilers play four straight on the road with stops in Florida, Tampa Bay, Philadelphia and Chicago. They hit the 20-game mark, nudging up against the quarter-pole of the season, against the Dallas Stars in their first game back at home Nov. 13.

Simply put, history shows if the Oilers don't occupy a playoff spot through 20 games, which seems unlikely, to understate in the extreme, they'll be up against long odds to be in the post-season mix after 82 games.

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

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
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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#151 ed in edmonton
October 30 2013, 12:51PM
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As a guy who can remember seeing the Alberta Oilers playing in the Gardens, this might be as bad as it gets. I fully understand the disappointment and venom. At least believing your team might have a chance at winning is important. Many fans don't feel the Oil could beat anybody at the NHL level.

However, as the Space guy mentioned things could turn around. How bad were Columbus last year off the start? If the season had been 50 instead of 48 games they make the playoffs.

I any event the Katz must fire Lowe to regain some credibility.

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#152 ed in edmonton
October 30 2013, 12:56PM
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Lee Brown wrote:

IRON MIKE KEENAN WOULD FIX THIS MESS FAST AND PERMANENTLY! His first move would be to bring in the great Mark Messier as a co-coach!

So far the "Boys on the Bus" have been a disaster as coaches or execs, i.e Gretzky, Lowe. What makes you think Messier would be better?

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#153 Spydyr
October 30 2013, 12:59PM
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Soccer Steve wrote:

I said it was silly for some to believe that the Oil can tempt a high caliber coach to even come here (much along the same lines as the Pronger fiasco, Nylander, Heatley, etc.).

You said we had a coach of this reputation (Kruger) already but let him go. He coached the Swiss national team in the past. He is not a high caliber coach.

However else you want to spin this conversation I'm not really interested so don't waste your time.

I never mentioned a word about Kruger's caliber as a coach.I just said they had a coach already.

You are the one spinning things here.

Typical, I'm wrong so now I'm not interested anymore in this discussion.

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#154 ...hint...hint....sshhhhh!!!!(possible insider)
October 30 2013, 01:37PM
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Oil put Grebeshkov and Potter on waivers.... Flames will put Jackman on waivers and pick up both...Oilers will claim Jackman off of waivers... also, Simmonds and Hartnell about to become Oilers.... here we go - hang on to your hats Oiler fans... the next 72 hours are going to be quite the ride....hang on... here we go......Dubbie or Labarbera may be next for the waiver wire..........ooohhhhhh woooowwwww...my opinion only...not for sure...

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#155 papamike
October 30 2013, 01:43PM
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...hint...hint....sshhhhh!!!!(possible insider) wrote:

Oil put Grebeshkov and Potter on waivers.... Flames will put Jackman on waivers and pick up both...Oilers will claim Jackman off of waivers... also, Simmonds and Hartnell about to become Oilers.... here we go - hang on to your hats Oiler fans... the next 72 hours are going to be quite the ride....hang on... here we go......Dubbie or Labarbera may be next for the waiver wire..........ooohhhhhh woooowwwww...my opinion only...not for sure...

Will you share what you are smoking?

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#156 Oiler Al
October 30 2013, 01:45PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

To everybody:

Let's keep the focus and comments hockey related. I understand the frustration, but let's avoid turning this site into a gossip forum about what players do off the ice on their own time.

Win or lose, players are allowed to live their lives away from the rink. They don't give up the right to have a beer, or several, or hang out as young men tend to do just because the team is in the tank.

Agree, its their lives, but you ever consider that maybe they are doing this on purpose , just to get off this train wreck.. heck, it worked for Carter and Richards, in Philly.

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#157 ssshhh
October 30 2013, 01:49PM
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papamike wrote:

Will you share what you are smoking?

A very interesting lunch conversation with someone near the heart of the oilers- a true blue insider. By the way, I forgot to mentioned that the waiver transaction was also to open up a d spot for Derek Engelland who is about to become an Oiler very shortly - will definitely improve the lack of toughness on the back end. Oh yeah, and MacIntyre is quietly skating and in the very best shape of his life - very lean, mean and almost ready to go - and I mean go! - with anybody, anywhere, anytime!

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#158 DCC
October 30 2013, 01:57PM
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Bishai in the Benches wrote:

Valid, but I think you're missing the point. I'm asking the question, where was ferrence to say "hey boys, maybe not tonight". I probably shouldn't have included details, but they support my claim that the team doesn't care. There is a lack of accountability and maturity. There isn't a way that you can possibly spin it that they are young and "22 year old boys will be 22 year old boy's". Someone in that room needs to step up and teach some pride.

I don't condone gossip or the highlighting of alleged off-ice shenanigans either however....after the loss last night, the team they lost to, the score (or lack thereof)and the general feeling of disillusionment that could be felt around the city last night....maybe different choices could have been made.

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#159 papamike
October 30 2013, 02:00PM
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ssshhh wrote:

A very interesting lunch conversation with someone near the heart of the oilers- a true blue insider. By the way, I forgot to mentioned that the waiver transaction was also to open up a d spot for Derek Engelland who is about to become an Oiler very shortly - will definitely improve the lack of toughness on the back end. Oh yeah, and MacIntyre is quietly skating and in the very best shape of his life - very lean, mean and almost ready to go - and I mean go! - with anybody, anywhere, anytime!

Must have been a liquid lunch....lol....Oilers have contract issues to bring in that many people as well as cap issues unless they offload a couple of the kids.

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#160 Wonger
October 30 2013, 02:16PM
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papamike wrote:

Must have been a liquid lunch....lol....Oilers have contract issues to bring in that many people as well as cap issues unless they offload a couple of the kids.

I was going to quit blogging cause it makes me crazy when people are rude to the Wonger but....I just wanted to remind all Oiler fans-and nobody loves the Oilers more than the Wonger- that "IN TIMES OF DESPAIR THERE IS THE GREATEST HOPE"( sh!t I just made myself cry). Even if the Oilers finish bottom 5 this year-MAC T will sign more free agents to fill holes. With all the bad luck the Oil have had this year I can see them winning the draft lottery and Connor McDavid. All of a sudden the future is much brighter....Eakins gets more experience and his greatness begins to shine....YOU GET THE PICTURE! RELAX EVERBODY...THE NEXT 10 YEARS WILL BE THE GREATEST 10 YEARS IN OILERS HISTORY!!!!NOW I AM RETIRED!!!!BYE FOREVER!!!! I know Brownlee will miss the Wonger and all of his WISDOM!

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#161 papamike
October 30 2013, 02:21PM
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@Wonger

I, uh, uh hmmmmm. I don't think that the passion of Oilers fans are in....uh what was the question again..

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#162 Puck_In_Throat
October 30 2013, 02:47PM
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The worst part about this team is that at least in the mid 90s when my dad would take me to games the last 5:00 would have about 10 fights.

The 2013-2014 cOilers won't even give us that.

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#163 TM8Trent
October 30 2013, 03:00PM
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You know I have admit I bought and drank the kool-aid. I thought this really was a team that would challenge for a playoff spot. That dream is gone, and reality bites.

Now, moving on to the reason for my post, and that is drafting the best player available vs drafting for need. I am starting to doubt the validity of drafting the BPA. Let me explain.

The Oilers used that approach and as a result we have a group of smaller, highly skilled forwards. Now the premise is that you draft the BPA with the intent that they will be the most valuable player from that particular draft.

Obviously, that value can be used either on the team itself, or used in a trade. The problem is that when you have a poor mix of players like the Oilers do, the team as a whole under-performs, and then generally players as individuals also under-perform as a result. The end result is a substantial reduction the actual value of the player drafted. This negates the entire reason as to why you'd draft the BPA in the first place!

So, if the Oilers traded Yakupov, they won't get a return worth what Yakupov's value truly is, it will certainly be much less. He'd get traded to another team and would inevitably light it up, unless of course he gets traded to another team full of small, skilled forwards...

It really sucks to be an Oilers fan. I now have a love-hate relationship with them.... I hate to love them.

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#164 Al
October 30 2013, 03:22PM
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Suddenly Eakins looks like Michael J Fox wondering how did I get back to the future and left deserted on Elm street so fast! The curse of Freddy is upon you.

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