GDB 19.0: SURVIVAL

Jason Gregor
November 10 2013 11:14AM

I didn't pick the Oilers to make the playoffs this season, had them 10th, but I don't think anyone expected them to start the season this poorly; 4-12-2 in their first 18 games and tonight a date with the defending Stanley Cup Champions.

The Oilers have to play like they did in Tampa Bay or they could easily get blown away in the Windy City.

We could break down the stats. Goals for, goals against, PP, PK or any other stat, but we all know that won't be very flattering for the Oilers.

It would be easy to pile on the Oilers right now, and I've noticed many have. Every goal that goes in is either a major breakdown or bad goaltending. The other team is also paid to play and they are capable of making nice plays. Even if the Oilers were 12-4-2 they'd still be allowing goals.

Hockey is about mistakes, they will happen, but the key is trying to force the opposition to make more. We know that hasn't happened often enough, but that shouldn't be a surprise.

The Oilers aren't built to win more games than they lose. They just aren't.

Yesterday I noticed a debate raging about the Oilers depth, and some were suggesting the Oilers finally have lots of depth in their-top nine. Are they better than they used to be in that department? Yes, but they are a far cry from having lots of proven NHL depth. I'm sorry, but that is true.

The reality is the Oilers won't win consistently until the make up of their top-nine is changed. I and many others have written or said this for the past few years. The Oilers aren't heavy enough, don't have enough grit and they don't have enough consistent skill in their top-nine.

That isn't the player's fault. You can't expect them to suddenly become heavier, or more physical. The one thing they can control is their ability to make smart plays. They need to do that more frequently, but even then I'd only see them as a .500 or so team.

Some people believe the Oilers don't really know what they have in their top-nine because they haven't had all of them healthy at the same time. It is true the forwards are finally healthy, but I defy anyone to tell me why the Oilers don't know what they have up front.

We know what type of player Taylor Hall is. He is their most dominant forward.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is still developing his overall game, but he's shown signs of what he can be.

We could describe every player's strength and weaknesses; we've seen them play enough. Marc Arcobello is the only surprise, and thus far he's been a pleasant one. Nail Yakupov has only played 60+ games, but we know where he needs to improve and what skills make him dangerous.

I don't need to see 20 games with a healthy group of forwards to know what the Oilers have. They will show great skill, good speed and creativity, but this team isn't going to win ugly games. They aren't going to overpower you down low. They won't consistently score goals from on top of the crease. They don't have that mixture, and the Oilers need to accept the weaknesses of the group as a whole, and find ways to fix it.

It doesn't mean they don't have good individual players, they do, but collectively as a group this team isn't going to succeed.

The same can be said for their defence.

They don't have any big, physical defencemen. Philadelphia dominated them down low yesterday, strictly by getting good body position. Even if Ladislav Smid was still on the team, the Flyers would have had success. Andrew Ference is now their most physical D-man, and it is unfair to expect him to lead the team in that department. He will battle guys his size, and guys bigger, but the Oilers need some heavy D-man who can stop teams from cycling down low.

WHAT NOW...

 There will be no magical fix for the Oilers. The players have to play smarter and more consistent, and Craig MacTavish has to look for trades that will help balance his lineup; the Oilers need more than just a top-pair D-man.

Until MacTavish tweaks his roster, the leaders need to keep the players unified. It won't be easy, but they owe it to themselves and the fans to compete every shift.

The other teams aren't going to go easy on the Oilers, in fact right now they might look at the Oilers as "point night." After the Detroit loss, Smid said, "Guys think it can't get worse, well it can," and he was correct. It is easy to let negativity overwhelm you. It happens for all of us, and in the case of the Oilers it will be extremely difficult to stay positive and upbeat, but they have to, or the final 64 games might be just as painful, or worse, than the first 18.

LINEUP...

Hall-Gagner-Hemsky
Perron-RNH-Eberle
Smyth-Arcobello-Yakupov
Joensuu-Gordon-Jones

It is fair to suggest that Eakins could stick with the same lines for a few games, and hope they find some chemistry. Switching lines often hasn't helped them win. Every NHL coach switches things up when his team is losing, but maybe Eakins should buck that trend and stick with some combinations to see what happens. I'm not sure there is a right answer at this point, but he will keep his top two lines the same to start the game.

Luke Gazdic is out with an injured shoulder.

The same six D-men will play and Devan Dubnyk starts.

QUICK HITS...

  • My wife is the best. She suggested I use Alice Eve in Oilersnation. I'd never seen Alice before, but I would agree.
     
  • The Oilers are said to be one of the leading teams in terms of using analytics, yet they continue to lose and they are one of the softest teams in the league. Is it just a coincidence, or have they gone too far into looking at statistics rather than on-ice play? Using analytics as another tool is smart, but it leads me to some questions.

    Are the Oilers using them properly?
    Are they relying on them too much?
    Is it too early to see the benefits from them?
    Are they a non-factor, and the issues are mainly with scouting?

    I don't know the answers, but it is something worth looking at. They weren't very good before they started using analytics, so maybe that is the bigger problem. When a team is in the midst of an eight-year losing streak they need to look at every aspect of their organization and try to improve it.
     
  • Speaking of analytics, I'm curious why when Ryan Jones had a bad Corsi rating he was getting ripped, yet now that he is even at Corsi, has two goals in ten games and is +3 no one is suggesting he stay in the lineup?
     
  • Here is a great story on Brendan Shanahan. Shanahan will go into the Hockey Hall of Fame tomorrow, but it will be bittersweet because of his father's battle with Alzheimers. Shanahan was one of my favourite players, and he's very deserving of us his induction into the HHOF.
     
  • Taylor Hall returned from injury with a new stick, and the half-orange shaft matches the Oilers colours. He has two goals in two games, and he's abandoned the toe drag. I'm sure he will bring it back at some point, but he's focusing on beating guys with his speed. He has 60 points in his last 56 games.
     
  • I usually don't rip on the officials, because they have an extremely tough job and they get it right more than they get it wrong, but that 5 minute major to Anton Belov yesterday was the worst call of the season. He never hit Giroux in the head, so how does he get a match penalty? They worst part was they met for three minutes to come up with that decision.

    You can't reverse the call, I understand that, but at least come out after the game, or today, and admit you made a mistake. MLB admitted Angel Hernandez blew a call in May, and Jim Joyce earned a lot of respect when he came out and admitted he blew the call at first base that ruined Armando Gallaraga's perfect game.

    The Flyers never scored on the match penalty, although it did lead to a weak make up call, and a subsequent four-on-four where Giroux scored, but fans deserve hearing someone from the NHL admit it was a horrendous call.
     
  • If the Oilers deal Ales Hemsky, which seems likely, I hope it isn't just for prospects. You won't improve as an organization if you continually ship out proven NHL players for maybes. Dealing Smid for prospects only made sense if they had another trade happening and needed to clear cap space. MacTavish said he felt they had depth and could move Smid, but they don't have size right now. Klefbom and Nurse will add size when they make the team, but today's lineup is smaller without Smid.
     
  • A reminder to watch the Nation's own Jason Strudwick tonight on Battle of the Blades. If you don't watch it, please vote for him. If Struds wins, the Inner City Children's Program will get $50,000. That will make a major difference for many young kids in Edmonton. You can vote here later tonight or tomorrow.

TONIGHT....

GAME DAY PREDICTION:  The Oilers have played the Hawks tough the past few seasons, but I don't see a miracle happening tonight. Hawks win 5-3.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Hall picks up two points. Hall has 15 points in 10 career games vs. the Hawks.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The comment section is filled with positive, up beat comments. Fans decide to pull a George Costanza, and write the opposite of what they feel. Everything in Costanza's life was going wrong....

"Why did it all turn out like this for me? I had so much promise. I was personable. I was bright. Oh, maybe not academically speaking, but I was perceptive. I always know when someone's uncomfortable at a party. It all became very clear to me sitting out there today, that every decision I've ever made in my entire life has been wrong. My life is the complete opposite of everything I want it to be. Every instinct I have in every aspect of life, be it something to wear, something to eat... It's often wrong."

After that riveting speech George decides to do the opposite of everything that is normal for him. Up is down, down is up....Later in the show Costanza is rewarded...

"A job with the New York Yankees! This has been the dream of my life ever since I was a child, and it's all happening because I'm completely ignoring every urge towards common sense and good judgement I've ever had. This is no longer just some crazy notion, Elaine, Jerry. This is my religion."  

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
Avatar
#1 mackb
November 10 2013, 11:16AM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers

GDP: Not an Oilers win.

Avatar
#2 I Remember the Orange Jerseys
November 10 2013, 11:20AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
23
cheers

GDP: Chicago wins 7-2.

OGDP: Dubnyk get lit up for 4 in the first, including a softie from center ice.

NSOGDP: Duncan Keith lays out Taylor Hall while Hall is attempting to toe drag the puck across the Chicago blue line. In a fit of rage, Jordan Eberle leaves the bench and lays a beating on Keith in retribution. Unbeknownst to Eberle, one of his skate laces is actually undone when he jumps over the boards.

Avatar
#3 rob
November 10 2013, 11:21AM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers

Labarbra start= gdp hawks 9 oil 2

Avatar
#4 Jay Gray
November 10 2013, 11:31AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
19
cheers

Hall-Gagner-Hemsky

Perron-RNH-Eberle

Smyth-Arcobello-Yakupov

Joensuu-Gordon-Jones

Despite all the doom and gloom that should be tonight's game, I really like this 4th line. This is the 4th line of a contender.

Avatar
#5 DSF
November 10 2013, 11:32AM
Trash it!
15
trashes
Cheers
24
cheers

Anyone who watched last night's Kings-Canucks game will know exactly what Gregor is talking about when he calls for some heaviness in the top 9.

The Canucks came out like gangbusters and, save for Quick, could have been up 2-3 goals early.

But as the game went along, the big, heavy Kings just wore down the Canucks and ended up winning 5-1.

Avatar
#6 Spydyr
November 10 2013, 11:47AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
12
cheers

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Groundhog day. Oilers lose.Bad defensive zone play.Eakins looks lost on the bench.Dubnyk lets in a softy.Gagner coasts back on the back check.MacT says we are done making moves for now.Or in other words the season is over.Who are we going to draft this year.

Avatar
#7 DSF
November 10 2013, 11:49AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
28
cheers

An outsider view of the Oilers:

"Craig MacTavish stormed onto the scene.

He declared the Edmonton Oilers weren’t going to take it anymore. He promised to be tough. He would be aggressive. He was ready to lift this team from last place to a playoff spot with the greatest of urgency.

“I’m an impatient guy and I bring that impatience to this situation,” MacTavish said the day he was hired, April 15.

“I think we’re at the stage in terms of the cycle of our hockey club right now that we have to do some bold things.

“We have to expose ourself to some semblance of risk to try to move the team forward in a rapid fashion.”

So, what happened?

Five weeks into the NHL season and already the Oilers are thinking about next year. The Oilers, may in fact, be worse under coach Dallas Eakins and the club is stumbling around in last place in the West.

Where are all these “bold” moves MacTavish declared?

The Oilers sent Ladislav Smid and Olivier Roy down the road to the Calgary Flames for a couple of prospects Friday and signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a one-year deal. With any luck, he’ll play well and be trade bait at the deadline.

No, folks, these aren’t blockbusters by any stretch. An NHL executive noted they are more like “distractions” to make Edmonton fans think moves are being made.

“It’s kind of like throwing a flare in the other direction,” said the executive."

http://www.ottawasun.com/2013/11/09/where-are-all-the-bold-moves-edmonton-oilers-general-manager-craig-mactavish-promised-when-he-took-over

Avatar
#8 Brack
November 10 2013, 11:50AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
13
cheers

"The Oilers are said to be one of the leading teams in terms of using analytics, yet they continue to lose and they are one of the softest teams in the league." Seems pretty clear, advance stats make you soft.

Avatar
#9 AdamfromOilfans
November 10 2013, 11:51AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
15
cheers

The Oilers are clearly NOT using analytics correctly because there's no advanced stat I've seen that says it's wise to ice a fourth line consisting of two face-punchers and a career AHL plug night after night.

Gazdic has been TERRIBLE at hockey, and yet he's played every game until now.

That's not the only problem on the Oilers, but if they were really relying heavily on advanced stats, they'd be trying to make sure that they didn't ice a line that gets no scoring chances and allows many even while playing against the worst players the opposition can throw against them.

Avatar
#10 MessyEH!
November 10 2013, 11:51AM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
20
cheers

Oilers lose 9-2 Sammy Gagner winds up a -9 and the universe is righted.

Avatar
#11 D
November 10 2013, 11:52AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
20
cheers

Not a Star Trek fan JG? Alice Eve is hot.

Avatar
#12 Walter Sobchak
November 10 2013, 11:54AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
43
cheers

OGDP - Oilers lose.

Eakins post game conference, "I really liked our game, I thought we did a lot of the good things well, it's to bad that a couple of little mistakes cost us the game"

Rinse & repeat.

Avatar
#13 joshgladu
November 10 2013, 11:54AM
Trash it!
15
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

ryan jones gets ripped because he sucks at hockey.

Avatar
#14 OilClog
November 10 2013, 11:55AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
29
cheers
DSF wrote:

Anyone who watched last night's Kings-Canucks game will know exactly what Gregor is talking about when he calls for some heaviness in the top 9.

The Canucks came out like gangbusters and, save for Quick, could have been up 2-3 goals early.

But as the game went along, the big, heavy Kings just wore down the Canucks and ended up winning 5-1.

Everyone remembers Chicago beating all these "heavy" teams for another cup last season too.. Just saying

Avatar
#15 DevoKnows
November 10 2013, 11:58AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
16
cheers

Ya, I really think that 4th line looks good too!

What I don't get is, the whole city (Edm) knows that the Oilers are too small and soft, but Oiler management keep building a soft/small lineup every year! Why?

I know it will never happen, but I would have loved to seen a huge shake up, say a Eberle/Hemsky/Gagne/Petry to Philly for Giroux/Simmonds/Mezeros/Colborn blockbuster. Something like that to really "shake" things up. This may not be a fair trade (I dont follow Oilers or Philly that close) but something along those lines. Holmgrem is definitely the type of manager you want to work with, he loves to take chances.

what do you peeps think?

Avatar
#16 DSF
November 10 2013, 12:00PM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
19
cheers
OilClog wrote:

Everyone remembers Chicago beating all these "heavy" teams for another cup last season too.. Just saying

Phhttt...

Toews - 6'2" 210

Hossa 6'1" 210

Sharp 6'1" 200

Handzus 6'5" 215

Bickell 6'4" 225

Saad 6'1" 205

Avatar
#17 joshgladu
November 10 2013, 12:01PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
16
cheers

fyi the big guys for the kings are good hockey players. they arent just big guys theyre legit skilled at hockey. oilers don't even have enough good players who are average sized yet

Avatar
#18 Woodguy
November 10 2013, 12:03PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers

The Oilers are said to be one of the leading teams in terms of using analytics

No they're not.

They can best be described as "dabbling"

They don't even have an analytics department yet.

Dan Haight's a pretty bright guy, but he's just consulting and not on staff full time.

Also, the fruits of proper use of analytics take time as you use them mostly to make roster decisions.

Teams most heavily using them to my knowledge (know people who work/have done work for the teams) are San Jose, Chicago, Boston.

Avatar
#19 Woodguy
November 10 2013, 12:06PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
17
cheers

Why won't Eakins put 4-93-14 back together?

They won the battle most nights against the toughest in the Western Conference last year.

89 is serious defensive liability and Eakins has had 4 at his side since they came back.

A lot of teams like to go power vs power and 89 is seeing the toughest assignments and he simply can't handle them.

The fact that 89 is in his 7th NHL year and you'd rather see 93 in 3rd NHL year out against the tough comp speaks volumes about the make up of this team.

Avatar
#20 kale
November 10 2013, 12:08PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
17
cheers
DevoKnows wrote:

Ya, I really think that 4th line looks good too!

What I don't get is, the whole city (Edm) knows that the Oilers are too small and soft, but Oiler management keep building a soft/small lineup every year! Why?

I know it will never happen, but I would have loved to seen a huge shake up, say a Eberle/Hemsky/Gagne/Petry to Philly for Giroux/Simmonds/Mezeros/Colborn blockbuster. Something like that to really "shake" things up. This may not be a fair trade (I dont follow Oilers or Philly that close) but something along those lines. Holmgrem is definitely the type of manager you want to work with, he loves to take chances.

what do you peeps think?

Seriously? after yesterdays game, do you really think Holmgren saw anything that he wants off the Oilers roster?

Avatar
#21 120 stitches
November 10 2013, 12:12PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

I agree with Jay that it will be interesting to see them play 4 lines tonight that can actually play hockey especially on a back to back. All the good teams have 4 lines that can score ---a primary example being the team we are playing tonight. With the lack of size in our current lineup why not try going with a completely skill, speed lineup and just roll the lines. I would even add Omark to that mix as he reminds me of Ray Whitney when Whitney was trying to get established in the NHL. You will recall Whitney was at the Oiler training camp when he was about Omark's age and Lowe let him go for nothing. Just another example of bad player assessment--as was the case with Glencross, Hejda , Brodziak-- other players we desperately could use right now that were given away.

Avatar
#22 bazmagoo
November 10 2013, 12:18PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
32
cheers

The only thing I'm looking forward to this season is the great interviews Bryzgalov is going to give the Edmonton media. Thank you MacT!

Avatar
#23 A-Mc
November 10 2013, 12:21PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

Somehow the #oilers show up for Chicago so I'm predicting an Oilers win 4-3.

Playoff hopes are long gone but the season is not lost. If macT can make some moves that clearly benefit the team, the remainder of this season can be used as time to mesh with one another; next season is when the oilers hit the ground running. If macT sits tight, nothing will change and we can expect more of the same.

Prospects won't help us right now. Imo, klefbom and Nurse won't help right now either. We need to adjust the team to be a .500 team with out those two and when they are ready they can bump us into the 90-98pt range to start making the playoffs.

Plz MacT, don't let the smid trade be solely for bryz...plz no...

Avatar
#24 Sean17
November 10 2013, 12:23PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
17
cheers

Gregor, I got to hand it to you and the other media folks who have to write about this team day in and day out. My GDB blog would have simply been titled : Whatever. And the pic of Alice Eve.

I think 630 Ched needs to ditch the 1.5 hours of pre game - what's left to say! Poor Bob, can't even have donuts anymore too….

Avatar
#25 kj
November 10 2013, 12:24PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers
Brack wrote:

"The Oilers are said to be one of the leading teams in terms of using analytics, yet they continue to lose and they are one of the softest teams in the league." Seems pretty clear, advance stats make you soft.

Kings use advanced stats, well corsi anyways.

Ryab rishaug tsb sharks vs kings 2013 playoffs

Avatar
#26 HOFFF
November 10 2013, 12:25PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers
DSF wrote:

An outsider view of the Oilers:

"Craig MacTavish stormed onto the scene.

He declared the Edmonton Oilers weren’t going to take it anymore. He promised to be tough. He would be aggressive. He was ready to lift this team from last place to a playoff spot with the greatest of urgency.

“I’m an impatient guy and I bring that impatience to this situation,” MacTavish said the day he was hired, April 15.

“I think we’re at the stage in terms of the cycle of our hockey club right now that we have to do some bold things.

“We have to expose ourself to some semblance of risk to try to move the team forward in a rapid fashion.”

So, what happened?

Five weeks into the NHL season and already the Oilers are thinking about next year. The Oilers, may in fact, be worse under coach Dallas Eakins and the club is stumbling around in last place in the West.

Where are all these “bold” moves MacTavish declared?

The Oilers sent Ladislav Smid and Olivier Roy down the road to the Calgary Flames for a couple of prospects Friday and signed Ilya Bryzgalov to a one-year deal. With any luck, he’ll play well and be trade bait at the deadline.

No, folks, these aren’t blockbusters by any stretch. An NHL executive noted they are more like “distractions” to make Edmonton fans think moves are being made.

“It’s kind of like throwing a flare in the other direction,” said the executive."

http://www.ottawasun.com/2013/11/09/where-are-all-the-bold-moves-edmonton-oilers-general-manager-craig-mactavish-promised-when-he-took-over

All points we already know and we're discussed. But thanks for the update.

Avatar
#27 Brack
November 10 2013, 12:27PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

@kj

Yes, that's a very salient if not comprehensible point.

Avatar
#28 DSF
November 10 2013, 12:33PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
120 stitches wrote:

I agree with Jay that it will be interesting to see them play 4 lines tonight that can actually play hockey especially on a back to back. All the good teams have 4 lines that can score ---a primary example being the team we are playing tonight. With the lack of size in our current lineup why not try going with a completely skill, speed lineup and just roll the lines. I would even add Omark to that mix as he reminds me of Ray Whitney when Whitney was trying to get established in the NHL. You will recall Whitney was at the Oiler training camp when he was about Omark's age and Lowe let him go for nothing. Just another example of bad player assessment--as was the case with Glencross, Hejda , Brodziak-- other players we desperately could use right now that were given away.

Ray Whitney had a 40 point season in the NHL when he was 21.

Omark is 26.

At Omark's age, Whitney scored 26G and 64P in the NHL.

Avatar
#29 Jesse
November 10 2013, 12:34PM
Trash it!
12
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

Oilers need players like Sean Couturier they need to start looking for players like him.

Trade your #1 in 2014 for him. Something

Avatar
#30 Rob Gilgan
November 10 2013, 12:36PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

Ever the optimists, in spite of a slow start to the season, Oilers fans are already looking to next year. "It will be great," Oilers fans said, more or less in unison, "Just you wait and see!"

Avatar
#31 Marshall Law
November 10 2013, 12:36PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

Could they use a different mix up front? Sure, but let's not focus on that until this team decides to ice an NHL-calibre defensive group.

Jeff Petry is a decent NHL d man. However, he probably isn't a top-3 defenceman on a competitive team.

The problem with this team is that they have Petry (and perhaps Belov) along with a bunch of other players who would be a #5-#7 on any other team. Smid, although popular, was no better than a #5. His departure is a loss but not a significant one.

It doesn't matter how many big forwards are thrown into the mix, until this team has a group of d men that can be considered to be on par with an average NHL team, it won't be successful.

Avatar
#32 Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate
November 10 2013, 12:39PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

Just keep it close boys

We ain't gonna win this one

The reverse is true*.

* I Hope

Avatar
#33 John
November 10 2013, 12:41PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
12
cheers

Chicago may bring their B game against Edmonton and therefore Edmonton has a chance. But if they decide to play their A game it is over.

Hard to get up for an AHL team

Avatar
#34 Harlie
November 10 2013, 12:46PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Uh oh boys, I hope our uni's don't turn surgical green. I thought Rexall colors were orange and blue?

http://www.rexall.ca/

I can see Michaels licking his lips already, "and Nurse threads the needle like a surgeon!"

Avatar
#35 Rama Lama
November 10 2013, 12:51PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
10
cheers

I'm not totally buying the argument you are laying down here Jason........that being it's totally a heaviness issue with the team.

Look at Colorado, they were worse than the Oilers last year, made no significant player additions ( except for what they drafted) got a new coach ..........and are tearing up the league. Yes they have larger defensemen than we do but presumably they are slower as well.

So why is Colorado doing so well and we are not? Might I suggest the following:

We covet speed way too much.......we are so fast our players are constantly in front of the play and always seem to be skating past the puck.

We do not covet size enough.......should be drafting the best size /skill combination instead of speed/skill combination.

Drafting from the basic principle of back end first........start with goaltending, then defense and finally forwards.

Coaching........I find it incredulous that some how Dallas Eakins and his systems have not come under more scrutiny?? Why are Patrick Roy's systems producing so mightily given the similarities in our player profile? Why were our speciality teams to much better last year ? Our players have gained experience, we have brought in additional skill and grit, but continue to go in reverse??

Management........what's to say here except we have "six rings" and he knows how to win!

Avatar
#36 Alsker
November 10 2013, 12:52PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

We better be ready from the get go, the hawks played last nite and are going to want to break us early. A couple quick ones and this could have their fans chanting "we want 10, we want 10" before the end of the second. Not what I want to hear or see but after yesterday.....

Avatar
#37 Smokey
November 10 2013, 12:53PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
Jay Gray wrote:

Hall-Gagner-Hemsky

Perron-RNH-Eberle

Smyth-Arcobello-Yakupov

Joensuu-Gordon-Jones

Despite all the doom and gloom that should be tonight's game, I really like this 4th line. This is the 4th line of a contender.

If you remove Jones.

Avatar
#38 MessyEH!
November 10 2013, 01:05PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Rama Lama wrote:

I'm not totally buying the argument you are laying down here Jason........that being it's totally a heaviness issue with the team.

Look at Colorado, they were worse than the Oilers last year, made no significant player additions ( except for what they drafted) got a new coach ..........and are tearing up the league. Yes they have larger defensemen than we do but presumably they are slower as well.

So why is Colorado doing so well and we are not? Might I suggest the following:

We covet speed way too much.......we are so fast our players are constantly in front of the play and always seem to be skating past the puck.

We do not covet size enough.......should be drafting the best size /skill combination instead of speed/skill combination.

Drafting from the basic principle of back end first........start with goaltending, then defense and finally forwards.

Coaching........I find it incredulous that some how Dallas Eakins and his systems have not come under more scrutiny?? Why are Patrick Roy's systems producing so mightily given the similarities in our player profile? Why were our speciality teams to much better last year ? Our players have gained experience, we have brought in additional skill and grit, but continue to go in reverse??

Management........what's to say here except we have "six rings" and he knows how to win!

I agree with most of what you said. Except I would never draft a goalie in the 1st two rounds.

Avatar
#39 Peter
November 10 2013, 01:11PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

@Woodguy

Elliott Friedman has mentioned many times the Oilers do lots of analytics. Is he mistaken?

Avatar
#40 Rama Lama
November 10 2013, 01:12PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

@MessyEH!

So what you are saying is that the most important position in Hockey......bar none, is not worthy of a first round draft choice? That's not bold!

I really don't care in which round we draft them, but if there is an extremely gifted goaltender, let's get him before the other 30 teams do?

Fair enough?

Avatar
#41 DSF
November 10 2013, 01:15PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
Harlie wrote:

Uh oh boys, I hope our uni's don't turn surgical green. I thought Rexall colors were orange and blue?

http://www.rexall.ca/

I can see Michaels licking his lips already, "and Nurse threads the needle like a surgeon!"

That colour scheme is also prominent on renderings of the new arena.

http://sportsbusinesscanada.com/held-hostage/

I'd wager the Oilers will be getting new uniforms when the new arena opens.

Avatar
#42 bazmagoo
November 10 2013, 01:15PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

@Rama Lama

"Coaching........I find it incredulous that some how Dallas Eakins and his systems have not come under more scrutiny?? Why are Patrick Roy's systems producing so mightily given the similarities in our player profile? Why were our speciality teams to much better last year ? Our players have gained experience, we have brought in additional skill and grit, but continue to go in reverse??"

Personally I think the sooner Eakins goes, the better. Anyone who watches the Oilers should be able to recognize they have taken a step back this season. Considering they have improved personnel (Perron, Ference, Belov, Arcobello, Gordon) this should not be happening. Our PP and PK are pathetic.

Eakins excuse for the Swarm system not working a few weeks back, "I thought the players could play basic defense, I guess I was wrong". Sounds like a guy trying to pass the buck for it's poor performance to me.

Hate to blame the coach, but it's much easier to rid yourself of one coaching contract as opposed to 23 players. He's lost the room, doesn't have the coaching acumen needed at the highest level, and is throwing his players under the bus. Time to go Dallas, wonder how long it takes the Oiler "brain" trust to figure it out.

Avatar
#44 Ray
November 10 2013, 01:22PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
22
cheers

Jason....why is gags playing first line centre??????arcobello has deserved to play there and also is a better playmaker . Gags should be at the most 3rd line!!!!l. He missed a lot of games and should work himself into a position where he deserves to play on top line. Why do the oilers do this? Wasn't Eakins the one who said " we are not going to play players based on salary"?

Avatar
#45 Rama Lama
November 10 2013, 01:22PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers

@bazmagoo

AMEN Brother!

Too bad he has been given a free ride from all the professional writers. I know no one wants a coaching change.......me included, but come on, exactly how many games do we need to lose before people figure out the players have tuned out DE?

Avatar
#46 Jeffff
November 10 2013, 01:30PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers

Bad Goaltending

No #1 pairing D-men

No heavy 2 way center on top 2 lines.

No big wingers top 2 lines

No 4th line.

Worst record in the NHL since the 2005 lockout.

What has Edmonton done with all their picks and players?

8 years I could have done a better job

Avatar
#48 Rick
November 10 2013, 01:36PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Jeffff wrote:

Bad Goaltending

No #1 pairing D-men

No heavy 2 way center on top 2 lines.

No big wingers top 2 lines

No 4th line.

Worst record in the NHL since the 2005 lockout.

What has Edmonton done with all their picks and players?

8 years I could have done a better job

Probably 3 cities in the NHL that would put up with this bad product.

Edmonton Toronto Montreal

Avatar
#49 bazmagoo
November 10 2013, 01:40PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

@Jason Gregor

All fair points Jason, except for "The dumbest thing MacTavish could do is fire the coach and let the players believe once again that they aren't the issue."

The dumbest thing MacT could do is do nothing. This is the NHL, not training camp for coaches and gm's.

It's my opinion and I believe it will prove to be the right one. Only time will tell.

Avatar
#50 Terrence
November 10 2013, 01:41PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

You can't fire the players , you have tried firing the coaches and GM's, and the team is still bad. It does not take a detective to figure out the problem is senior management.

Kevin Lowe must be fired or he should resign.

Comments are closed for this article.