GDB 20.0: HORCOFF RETURNS

Jason Gregor
November 13 2013 12:43PM

For the past five seasons, when things went wrong for the Oilers you could always fall back to one thing, "Blame Horcoff." It didn't matter what was ailing the Oilers it seemed it was always Horcoff's fault, mainly due to his $5.5 million cap it. If the Oilers top line wasn't scoring, and Horcoff wasn't on it, it was still his fault.

On my radio show it became somewhat of a cult mantra. People would end their texts or emails with Blame Horcoff. Mainly it was a parody of South Park's "Blame Canada," but the odd person believed it to be true.

If Horcoff was still here, he likely would have been blamed for not stopping Nail Yakupov from going public with his frustrations. It was a simpler time for some Oilers fans, because no matter what went wrong you could always blame one guy.

Horcoff is gone, but surprisingly (not at all) the struggles of the Oilers remain.

Horcoff played 796 games as an Oiler, 5th most all-time behind Kevin Lowe (1,037), Ryan Smyth (911), Mark Messier (851) and Glenn Anderson (845).  He is 9th all-time in goals and points, and despite what some feel he was a solid Edmonton Oiler for 12 seasons.

Horcoff is playing just over 14 minutes a game for the Stars, mainly on the third line, switching between wing and centre, and recently he was put on the 2nd unit PP for a net-front presence. Horcoff's game was never flashy, but he earned his icetime over the years. He started out as a 4th line centre, and worked his way up to the top line, and he was the #1 centre and leading point getter amongst forwards when the Oilers went to game seven of the 2006 Stanley Cup Finals.

He was unfairly vilified because his owner and general manager overpaid him. It was never his fault the Daryl Katz and Kevin Lowe signed him to a $33 million contract, but many people expected him to be an elite player after that deal. It never happened, because Horcoff was never an elite scorer. He was a tireless worker, who could produce offensively, but he wasn't going to be a consistent 75-point player.

I never felt bad for Horcoff, and neither did he. He knew the expectations would be raised when he signed that deal, and at the time he signed his six-year contract he felt he could produce. We all believe we are worth what we make. If your boss came into your office today and offered to triple your salary, you'd gladly accept it, and feel that you are worth it.

The Oilers could use a 27-year-old Shawn Horcoff right now. A guy who could produce offensively, 73 points, but knew how to play defence, and actually loved the challenge of going against  the likes of Joe Thornton, Pavel Datsyuk or Ryan Getzlaf. Horcoff wasn't the biggest guy, but his work ethic and smarts allowed him to battle and often shut down the opposition's star players.

The final few seasons of Horcoff's career in Edmonton weren't very good. The team was a consistent bottom-feeder and he missed almost half of two seasons. This summer was the right time for him to leave, but I always felt he was under appreciated as a player due to his final contract with the Oilers.

QUICK COMPARISON....

Yesterday, Nail Yakupov went public with his frustrations about a lack of icetime. Every player wants to play more, so he isn't alone with his thinking, but rarely do players go public about it, especially after only 65 NHL games. Yakupov choose that route and some feel it will cause a rift in the room or with management. Only time will tell if that occurs, but many have compared Yakupov to Steven Stamkos so I did a quick comparison of their first 65 NHL games.

No comparison is completely fair or accurate because the players had different coaches, teammates and other factors. Most notably, Yakupov's first 65 games were interrupted by a six-month summer break. It is difficult to start a season how you ended the previous one, but the comparison does give us some insight into how these two snipers were used.

FIRST 65 GAMES

Stamkos                                                        Yakupov
14-19-33 points                                           19-16-35 points
13:47 TOI/game                                           14:47 TOI/game
2:22 PP TOI/game                                       2:25 PP TOI/game

Yakupov was upset over his icetime in his previous four games. In Yakupov's first 65 games he had 11:45 or less of TOI seven times. In Stamkos' first 65 games he had 22 games with 11:45 or less of TOI.

Stamkos was a healthy scratch three times, while Yakupov has been a healthy scratch twice. Yakupov is -18 in his career while Stamkos was -14 in his first 65 games.

Barry Melrose was fired after only 16 games into Stamkos' rookie season, and his replacement Rick Tocchet didn't automatically start playing Stamkos more. Stamkos earned his icetime, and he gained a lot of momentum in the 2nd half of his season.

Ironically enough, in the final 14 games of his rookie season (game 66 to 79) Stamkos scored 9 goals and 13 points. He continued that pace into the next season and he has been the most prolific goal scorer since the beginning of the 2009 season.

I don't see Yakupov emulating Stamkos' success, mainly because it would be extremely difficult, but also because Stamkos skates better than Yakupov. Both are former #1 overall picks, but their games are very different.

I said yesterday I didn't have a major issue with Yakupov saying what he said. He is frustrated, and he willingly made his comments. They weren't done in the heat of the moment after a bad loss. He had 40 hours to think about his plan, and he elected to go through with it.

His agent, Igor Larionov, had two contract disputes in his career, so I can see why he didn't advise his client to stay quiet. Larionov has never been afraid to stand up to management, although he wasn't 20 years old and only 65 games into his NHL career when he made his stance.

I don't think Yakupov's comments will change much. Dallas Eakins isn't going to be pressured into playing him more, considering Yakupov is averaging 15:28/game this season, and I doubt Yakupov is suddenly going to become a great defensive player. For the past year I've stated the Oilers were going to have to deal one of their four kids, and Yakupov's comments might make that decision a little bit easier, but that is about the only impact I feel his comments will make.

When you compare his icetime to young players around the NHL in their first 65 games, he hasn't been treated unfairly. I'm glad he wants to play more. You wouldn't want a guy who was satisfied with his icetime, but his play will earn him more icetime, not venting publicly.

One other quick comparison between Yakupov and the other young Oiler draft picks.

Here is their point totals in their first 65 NHL games.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins:  22-34-56 
Taylor Hall: 22-20-42
Jordan Eberle: 18-23-41
Ales Hemsky: 8-29-37
Nail Yakupov: 19-16-35
Sam Gagner: 7-28-35

Hall (18), RNH (17), Eberle (17), Gagner (15) had more icetime in their first 65 games, while Hemsky played 12:20 if you look at TOI. Every situation is different of course, and in the NHL there is no such thing as "fair." But it is interesting to look at how each of them started their NHL career.

LINEUP

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

Ference-Petry
Belov-Larsen
N.Schultz-Potter

Dubnyk

The Oilers sent Taylor Fedun down to OKC and called up Potter. They want a bigger body and a heavy shot on the 2nd PP unit. Fedun had an unreal start to his NHL career, and he will be back, but he needs to get a touch faster. He made a great first impression. Potter might be bigger, but he rarely plays big. He'll be highly motivated to play well, at least he should be, because if he doesn't he likely won't get another one-way NHL contract.

SYSTEM TALK

There has been lots of talk about Eakins system and how it is costing the Oilers games. Eakins tweaked the system after seven games, because the players couldn't play it, however, the current system is not that difficult according to some veterans. 

"It is just about recognition, said Nick Schultz."You have to be looking around; too often we get to puck focused. You need to take a quick look at the puck, but you need to be aware of your position and your man. We have to work away from the puck and have recognition. 

"I think any system in the league, regardless of where you play, is pretty similar. You are either attacking or sitting back and it is just a matter of understanding your position, and where you have to be in all situations on the ice. Whether it is forechecking, coming through the neurtral zone or in the D-zone every player has to know where to go. You have to be aware of what your job is and where you are. You have to be able to rely on one another. I think we are starting to show spurts of that, but we need to be able to do it all the time," Nick Schultz said. 

Schultz played in Minnesota where they won because of their system. They didn't have as much skill as other teams, but they were dedicated and committed to their system. Once the Oilers can rely on one another in every area on the ice, they will win, but the players have to be willing to do it. The system is not the issue. The players need to execute it properly more often.

Captain Andrew Ference said this yesterday on my show about their defensive zone coverage.,

It is unfortunate when you look at the goals we are giving up they are a product of our mistakes more than the other team taking it too us all game and finally breaking through. We have been doing a much better job defensively in D zone coverage lately, clogging up the other teams chances and their time, but as you call them the five-star mistakes are costing us games. 

"Hockey is not complicated; no system is a big math equation. It is just concentration, consistency and it is almost 100% mental. It is just resetting yourself after a good shift, resetting yourself after a bad shift and just not carrying baggage from past games or past weeks or past shifts.

It is just focusing on what you are going to do on the next 30-40 second span. It is a tough thing. It is a very easy thing to talk about, but much harder to implement. It is easier the longer you play, because you learned how to do it. But it is hard to learn to do it consistently."  

The Oilers system isn't unique, but the players are still trying to learn to play it consistently. They have improved recently, but when they make a mistake it is usually a major error and results in a goal. They need to become more consistent in their decisions and actions, and when they do, they should have more success. But it won't be easy, it will require every player being willing to commit 100% of the time. 

TONIGHT

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers have one home win in six starts. The fans are restless, and the Oilers will finally give them something to cheer about with a 4-3 victory.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Horcoff scores. On a one-timer. Ex-Oilers always score vs. the Oilers. Edmonton-born Vern Fiddler will get an assist on the goal.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:
Philip Larsen gets in on the "scoring against former team" and he scores a PP goal midway through the second frame. Larsen has five points in five games so far this season and he maintains his point-per-game pace. 

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

 

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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
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#51 Rama Lama
November 13 2013, 12:58PM
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Jason, I was wondering if you think that the Yakupov situation is such that this damaged relationship can be salvaged?

It seems now that all eyes will be on Yaks and this can't help his situation. Anytime a players goes public against his team.......eventually a trade follows.

As far as Horcoff goes, good team player void of any offensive talent. I hope he does well in Dallas but cant help but notice he is being utilized in a fourth line role, which suits his skill set. Had he been used this way in Edmonton, no one would have said much.

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#52 NRH
November 13 2013, 03:16PM
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Interesting comment from a fan made on TSN.ca...In Ken Dryden's book 'The Game'...there is a symmetry between the 1970s Leafs and the current Oilers..The Leafs had Sittler, McDonald, etc..young and promising but as Dryden points out that promise fades without being reinforced by winning. The current Oilers need strnog veteran leadership...Sidney Crosby had Lemieux, Stamkos had (and has) St. Louis, etc.. Players who have not had those strong role models (OV for example) struggle on how to make the playes around them better. Bottom line is that the Oilers need to get vets that know how to win and they need to do it quickly before the like of Hall and Eberle are ruined.

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#53 Soccer Steve
November 13 2013, 03:58PM
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I wonder what happens to the entire city of Edmonton - the part that is in some way invested or affiliated to the Oilers - if we go on a 5 game winning streak (with a mauling of Calgary for good measure).

I really wonder. It sure would be nice.

P.S. I'm off to the Caribbean and will miss the next 5 games.

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#54 Moe
November 13 2013, 04:20PM
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I love how everyone is ripping Yak's.

Its going to be that much better when he gets traded and destroys the oilers everytime he plays us.

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#55 Wax Man Riley
November 13 2013, 04:30PM
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The people that think Yak deserves more minutes are the same people that think Omark should be on the team.

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#56 hockey fan 1976
November 13 2013, 09:35PM
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Eakins is a joke. 0-5 on the PP. where's Belov/Potter or Yuk? Anyone who says its or the coache's fault is out to lunch. How do we go from one of the best last last year in PP to 8 periods with zero goals. Wow.

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#57 Slyers
November 13 2013, 11:19PM
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TDSM31 wrote:

Gagner out on the ice again for last minute when we need a goal. This coach for the Oilers...not too bright.

Like I said in a earlier post Sam is like Teflon none of his mistakes stick to him. He can play like crap defensively, not win a face off, miss assignments(not too bad tonight) and get prime ice time 5/3, last min ice you name it...it's a FREAKING NIGHTMARE MYSTERY, rapped up in an enigma!!!!!

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#58 Slats
November 13 2013, 11:20PM
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Another nice fairly safe and pretty game by the Oilers. Two great chances early but did you notice how every oiler player peels off to the corner no one willing to stop, get dirty, for a rebound goal. Pretty very pretty.

Horrendous 5 on 3 - High slot could have parked a Semi trailer there was so much room. Where was Jonensuu on the 5 on 3 or for any PP in front of the net the guy is a beast. 5 forwards can someone tell me any great PP that used 5 frickin fwds???

HALL SHOOT THE PUCK AT END OF GAME FROM HIGH SLOT - WTF.

good job Dubey (1 minor hiccup). . .nickel lining on this one

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#59 common sense
November 13 2013, 12:50PM
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Horc is slotted as a fourth line center for the Stars. He would be probably be second line or even first line centre on some nights for the Oilers. He wasn't a bad guy, just overpaid by KLO. And as you have said on your radioshow, he wasnt' the best Oil Captain in terms of community involvement. Bottom line for me: B grade.

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#60 TDSM31
November 13 2013, 03:43PM
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I know this is off topic for this post but looks like Buffalo is trying to secure that Connor McDavid pick by copying our franchise model.

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=436517

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#61 Moe
November 13 2013, 04:47PM
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Dallas eakins is the issue with this team.

we need a real coach not a rookie coach. we have enough rookies on our team we dont need another one coaching them.

i'll bark with yak all day. If he gets traded mark my words he will produce more than any of the other three (Hall, Ebs, RNH) dont get me wrong i like all three of them but yak has a talent that isnt being used properly. Once a diffrent team gets a hold of him its going to be lights out for edmonton when he plays them.

look at most of the oilers that they traded away.

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#62 Slyers
November 13 2013, 09:50PM
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I don't get it ....why is Gagner is out for the 5/3 instead of Yak. Sam has had a free pass on terrible defensive play for seven years .. His line mates will get benched and even traded but Sam gets ice time no matter what? The only coach to hold him accountable was Quin, and he was vilified for it. Sam has some heart but he does NOTHING else even his offence is average and generally is over a 40 game stretch at best. But these coaches just keep throwing him out there. I don't agree at all with what Yak did.... However it is easy to see how a young player would see a double standard. I have been preaching for years to my friends that the two most overrated players are Gagner and Dubnyk. They both should move on. Or at the very least one becomes a winger and the other a back up goalie. Maybe Sam has some pics of who Pronger was really with? .....hmmmm

Ps. Nice sloppy rebound Dubby!,,

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#63 rubbertrout
November 13 2013, 02:29PM
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Poly wrote:

The one thing I'm still unclear about with all this Yak talk the last few days is: How many games has he played in his career?

Haven't really seen that mentioned yet.

Gregor only mentioned it about 10 times in THIS VERY ARTICLE.

65 games ring a bell?

Sheesh.

I'm really hoping you were being sarcastic.

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#64 Harlie
November 13 2013, 04:05PM
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Dog Train wrote:

I still hate the Stars. Misery loves company so let's drag them down with us. Corey Potter is back so we're bound to win!

I'd rather we had Sherman Potter..

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#65 Wax Man Riley
November 13 2013, 04:32PM
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Moe wrote:

I love how everyone is ripping Yak's.

Its going to be that much better when he gets traded and destroys the oilers everytime he plays us.

It isn't a rip to say he needs to play better. It is the truth.

I'm putting Eberle and Hemsky out before him any day, so how does he get more minutes?

Play better than them. Simple.

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#66 FireKLowe
November 13 2013, 09:43PM
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This team is fundamentally bad and so is the coaching. How the fcuk do you not score at least one PP goal out of that many man advantage opportunities, especially on a 1:30 of 5 on 3?

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#67 Alsker
November 13 2013, 10:16PM
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@YFC Prez

Was hoping Assoc. coach was going to be Todd Nelson but Eakins would have been awesome. Freddie(R.Krueger) got the 6 ring bitch slap if you ask me.

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#68 MessyEH!
November 13 2013, 03:11PM
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Cynic wrote:

"Larionov led the revolt with Fetisov against Soviet authorities that prevented Soviet players to defect to the NHL."

I don't think he's afraid of 6-Rings or MBAtavish. Nor worried what fat-azzed scribblers or plagiarists in Edmonton see fit to print. It's best not to talk about the Tier2s on the algores.

The b..bs running The NHLs Worst Franchise can hold all the pressers they want to blow sunshine up y'all's dresses, but when Yak's ELC expires he owns the Oilers, not the other way around.

Stamkos? Phhhht. If you want a comparable, try Radulov.

There is a world of difference between Radulov and Yakupov. It's like comparing Lindros to Lemieux.

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#69 Randaman
November 13 2013, 03:48PM
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Alsker wrote:

Ok including your first post with this one I'm assuming you would rather have Yak play with Hall(future w. future) rather than #4+#83 together. Then I agree providing the Gagner experiment at center is not used between them.

Hall, Nuge, Yak!! That would be a killer combo in my mind.

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#70 Harlie
November 13 2013, 04:19PM
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MessyEH! wrote:

We wouldn't have to worry about our training staffs medical practices.

Horse Hockey! Suffering Saddle Soap! Klinger!!!

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#71 James
November 13 2013, 10:18PM
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Corey Potter, you're doing it wrong. How are we supposed to get the Potter Power Play with you in the damn box?

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#72 dobiezeke
November 13 2013, 11:23PM
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Make Joey the PP coach...god knows he has seen more success in his career than the clowns on the bench.

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#73 Retsinnab5
November 13 2013, 01:39PM
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NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:

Horcoff pots 2 goals then with 10 seconds left he gets a brakeaway he misses he net then Edmonton goes all 2007 and Hemsky scores with 2 seconds left to bring it to overtime. Then in Overtime Yak eventually pots the Game WInner!

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#74 Randaman
November 13 2013, 02:02PM
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@Jason Gregor

My bad, but not playing the future with Hall and playing the past(Hemsky) is a huge error in my eyes

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#75 Johe
November 13 2013, 04:14PM
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@dougtheslug

I was kind of being sarcastic. I know Oilers Nation will never be happy :)

On another note, it does make me happy that the game is on TSN. Love TSN coverage.

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#76 MessyEH!
November 13 2013, 04:14PM
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Harlie wrote:

I'd rather we had Sherman Potter..

We wouldn't have to worry about our training staffs medical practices.

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#77 Mikey
November 13 2013, 04:24PM
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DSF wrote:

Taylor vs. Tyler.

Giddyup.

Crap I always get these two confused when they are talked about in the same sentance. Which one did we take again? Did we take the better one?

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#78 Wax Man Riley
November 13 2013, 04:29PM
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OilClog wrote:

If Yakupov's comments make it alil easier to move him now, that's pathetic. The way everyone MSM and bloggers have been jumping down this kids throat, it's sickening. Rishaug was a goof yesterday, Jones, Matheson, and now you Gregor. I'm glad Yakupov is barking, he's been treated differently then all the rest! I'd be barking a mad storm too. It's a joke.

This got 26 props???

Really??

Why, when someone says "Hall has to stop his toe-drag and turning the puck over at the blue line," it isn't considered jumping down his neck? Why is it such a bad thing, if the kid calls out the team, for someone to call him out by telling him to play better.

He does not need more ice time to play better, he need to play netter to get more ice time. Simple as that. If he wants to be developed, he can go to OKC and play top minutes. If he wants to be a big boy and stay in the NHL, he can learn the game in time like every other player.

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#79 James
November 13 2013, 10:17PM
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@Alsker

Lots of peeps skippin out on the bills? That sucks man. Yeah can't complain about being on a salary. However, we can complain about how terrible this team is. Good god almighty!

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#80 Peter
November 13 2013, 10:27PM
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Just got home and looking at the Oilers site. How the hell does Gagner not have a SOG when Ferraro just said he had a chance at the beginning of the game? Who's smoking what here, the stats guys or Ferraro, since I missed it?

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#81 James
November 13 2013, 10:40PM
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And there's the empty net that doesn't usually work for us. EFFFFFF!!!!

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#82 Benny Botts
November 13 2013, 02:54PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

A Fail is when you don't read the lines correctly. Yakupov is playing with Arcobello, the guy who is tied for 3rd in points and 2nd on team in assists. #facepalm

Big fan of this ^

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#83 Wax Man Riley
November 13 2013, 04:34PM
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Al Low wrote:

Although Horc was overpaid because of 6 time Stanley Cup winner Kevin Lowe's generous overpayment for him (thanks in large part to his 100K hardline stance against Ryan Smyth the year before), I just want to remind Oiler fans about how well he played in the Stanley Cup run in 2006. I may get slammed for this post but it needs to be said, as I reminisce about how fun it was as a fan to be a part of that thrilling run. Although he wasn't the best player on the team, he was the first line centre, great penalty killer, solid defensively and excellent in the faceoff circle in that run. Seeing how bad the team is this year it puts into perspective how Horcoff was not the problem on the team the last few years.

I propped you, but as we all know....

IT ALWAYS WAS AND STILL IS HORCOFF'S FAULT!!!

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#84 camdog
November 13 2013, 05:00PM
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Wax Man Riley wrote:

The people that think Yak deserves more minutes are the same people that think Omark should be on the team.

Robbie Shremp all the way baby!!!I still can't believe there were Oiler fans that wanted Shremp to get more action!

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#85 YFC Prez
November 13 2013, 09:29PM
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Dammit petry

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#86 YFC Prez
November 13 2013, 09:30PM
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@Alsker

Yak, Belov, Potter. They have some heavy shooters. Blows my mind why none were out.

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#87 Johnnydapunk
November 13 2013, 10:16PM
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8 periods of hockey at home and the Oil haven't scored, surely they are getting close to a record??

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#88 James
November 13 2013, 10:37PM
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Ok, Dubey made me eat crow there. I'll take it.

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#89 dobiezeke
November 13 2013, 11:32PM
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Slats wrote:

Another nice fairly safe and pretty game by the Oilers. Two great chances early but did you notice how every oiler player peels off to the corner no one willing to stop, get dirty, for a rebound goal. Pretty very pretty.

Horrendous 5 on 3 - High slot could have parked a Semi trailer there was so much room. Where was Jonensuu on the 5 on 3 or for any PP in front of the net the guy is a beast. 5 forwards can someone tell me any great PP that used 5 frickin fwds???

HALL SHOOT THE PUCK AT END OF GAME FROM HIGH SLOT - WTF.

good job Dubey (1 minor hiccup). . .nickel lining on this one

Hall has a five cent brain...he believes he sees lanes on the ice that never exist.

Eakins has shat the bed with his support of the PP. Did he watch how Dallas clogged the front of the net?

Classic Oiler hockey - dump the puck in and watch how a good team walks it out of their end untouched.

Eberle playing like he was traded last week.

Yakupov continues to play like someone who has never watched hockey. 90 second shifts do nothing for your argument. The opposition is the team wearing the away uniforms - quit giving them the puck.

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#90 dave
November 13 2013, 01:26PM
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If all or most of the players are making more mistakes this year than last year and the major difference was the change of the head coach,why not blame the coach. He has to get better too.

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#91 justDOit
November 13 2013, 02:12PM
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About the only hope the Oilers have tonight, is to fight Dallas with Dallas!

This could get ugly.

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#92 TigerUnderGlass
November 13 2013, 02:20PM
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common sense wrote:

Horc is slotted as a fourth line center for the Stars. He would be probably be second line or even first line centre on some nights for the Oilers. He wasn't a bad guy, just overpaid by KLO. And as you have said on your radioshow, he wasnt' the best Oil Captain in terms of community involvement. Bottom line for me: B grade.

How do you figure he's the 4th line center? He's playing 3rd line minutes.

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#93 oilerjed
November 13 2013, 02:30PM
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DSF wrote:

Taylor vs. Tyler.

Giddyup.

OGP: Taylor hammers Tyler thru the end boards and scores off goalies head. Wait for it.

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#94 The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33
November 13 2013, 02:48PM
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Spydyr wrote:

If weak goaltending, an AHL quality defense and undersized one dimensional forwards .Looks good to you on paper. Stop rolling with that paper.

The team sucks dude. Everyone knows it. Why is it that every post you put up is about the how badly the Oilers suck. What's the point? Do you really think anyone in Edmonton aside from management think the Oilers are a good team? Show some creativity for once and just start having fun with it or just shut the Horcoff up!

You take this thing way too seriously. You need to get yourself a girl or start sitting on your left hand until it's numb so it feels like someone else is doing it.

end rant...dumba$$!

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#95 Poly
November 13 2013, 03:21PM
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rubbertrout wrote:

Gregor only mentioned it about 10 times in THIS VERY ARTICLE.

65 games ring a bell?

Sheesh.

I'm really hoping you were being sarcastic.

Did he?

Well, he must be the only one. I don't think I have heard the phrase "only 65 games" the last couple of days.

Seems like the type of thing that would get beaten to death.

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#96 dougtheslug
November 13 2013, 03:58PM
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Johe wrote:

LET'S BE POSITIVE PEOPLE!!! ENOUGH OF THIS REALISTIC NEGATIVE CRAP!!!

GDP: Oilers win by a field goal.

OGDP: Nail Yakupov scores his first goal at home and celebrates by kissing the Oilers logo at center ice. Taylor Hall beats Tyler Seguin into a coma. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins sets up three goals, eliminates terrorism, and plays so well defensively that Dallas Eakins smiles. Shawn Horcoff sheds a tear when the Oilers play a classy tribute to him on the jumbo tron.

NSOGDP: Oilers Nation is happy.

Re: NSOGDP

If there is a heartbeat on the Oilers, and they play hard for 60 minutes and pay attention to defensive detail a la Jacques Lemaire's old Minnesota Wild, and win by 3, they will be a tiny flicker of hope in ON

If they get outshot 36-14 and fluke off a point or even 2, a la Calgary last night against San Jose, ON will be far from happy

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#97 James
November 13 2013, 08:28PM
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Why the hell do TSN double headers always go into OT and start late. Switch the damn feed for people in the West!

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#98 YFC Prez
November 13 2013, 09:29PM
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Dammit dubnyk

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#99 Sailge
November 13 2013, 09:31PM
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Wow pp. Brutal. Score a damn goal.

Nice coverage there petry.

Gagner is awful. No goals in 19 back to last year.

I am a die-hard but I can't stop watching this train-wreck.

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#100 Alsker
November 13 2013, 09:55PM
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Slyers wrote:

I don't get it ....why is Gagner is out for the 5/3 instead of Yak. Sam has had a free pass on terrible defensive play for seven years .. His line mates will get benched and even traded but Sam gets ice time no matter what? The only coach to hold him accountable was Quin, and he was vilified for it. Sam has some heart but he does NOTHING else even his offence is average and generally is over a 40 game stretch at best. But these coaches just keep throwing him out there. I don't agree at all with what Yak did.... However it is easy to see how a young player would see a double standard. I have been preaching for years to my friends that the two most overrated players are Gagner and Dubnyk. They both should move on. Or at the very least one becomes a winger and the other a back up goalie. Maybe Sam has some pics of who Pronger was really with? .....hmmmm

Ps. Nice sloppy rebound Dubby!,,

Been asking that for years, bigger question is why the 4 year contract extension. Not a 2C, 3C, tough winger, better options anyways,64,4,14,83,57. Why is he here, why is he playing at all???

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