The Coach

Jonathan Willis
November 14 2013 09:32AM

On virtually any other NHL team, Dallas Eakins would be out of a job right now. A 4-14-2 start is a fireable offence for most NHL teams, but here Eakins has a protective barrier formed by the ghosts of Criag MacTavish and Pat Quinn and Tom Renney and Ralph Krueger.

The Path Forward

It isn’t too early to think about firing the coach. It’s just too early to actually fire the coach. Edmonton has fired coaches so many times without results (on that note, wouldn’t it be nice to go back two years and let Tom Renney keep coaching the team?) and it’s time to go a different route.

This is one of the things Craig MacTavish is here for. In previous years, Steve Tambellini proved remarkably unwilling to address simple team needs (such as fourth line centre). MacTavish is already one up on Tambellini because he’s been willing to try plugging in minor leaguers (recall Mark Arcobello rotting on the farm while Chris VandeVelde and Ryan Smyth failed as fourth line centres) but that’s not enough.

It’s trade time. And not a ‘move Ladislav Smid for futures’ trade. A trade that actually brings in NHL talent. Maybe it’s a defenceman who can play in the top-three. Maybe it’s a big forward who can play in the top-six. Maybe it’s a good third-line wing so that Boyd Gordon doesn’t have to drag around Jesse Joensuu and Ryan Jones. I don’t know what’s out there, or how much what’s out there costs to acquire; I do know that this team isn’t getting the job done and Dallas Eakins seems like he’s out of answers.

Normally, when the coach is out of answers the coach pays the price. In this case, so many other coaches have been out of answers that it’s time to try giving the man behind the bench some different pieces.

Lousy NHL Debuts

Some very good coaches have had some very bad starts to their careers, generally because opportunity arises with bad (or expansion) teams. Here’s a brief list of some very good coaches who started out on the wrong foot:

  • Scotty Bowman: 4-13-2 with St. Louis
  • Dick Irvin: 2-6-4 with Chicago
  • Ron Wilson: 4-13-2 with Anaheim
  • Lindy Ruff: 5-10-4 with Buffalo
  • Ken Hitchcock: 10-18-8 with Dallas

Naturally, I’m not saying ‘oh man, Dallas Eakins is Scotty Bowman!’ That would be crazy. What I am saying is that it’s possible that the Oilers will end up benefiting from their (essentially) forced patience with Eakins. Of course, it’s just as possible that 20 games from now nothing has changed and Eakins is out the door, but it’s at least plausible that the coach can right the ship.

So, About That Trade…

It has to be coming, and it has to be meaningful.

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#101 Bennyboy
November 14 2013, 11:06AM
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I really think that the coaching philosophy Is the exact opposite of what we have for a team. We aren't physical grinders. It's a run and gun team. Leopards don't change spots.

So keep the philosophy if you intend to replace most of the team.

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#102 15w40
November 14 2013, 11:17AM
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At some point it has to be something other than the coaching. They have changed that numerous times and the GM once.

Maybe change the old assistants.

MacT - tuned out was there long enough, Quinn - Old school - hard ass coach, Renney - Vetern teaching coach for the kids, Krueger - Super positive, new thinking career coach, Eakins - Up & coming new guy on the block that trained under some of the best coaches

What else can they try for coaching. There may be a reason that guys like Hitchcock isn't here. It may simply be timing but it also may be that he wasn't a good candidate to have 2 former coaches in management telling him how to do his job and who he will have for a staff.

This may or may not be the case but it cannot be simply the coaching - no way.

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#103 Impartial Oilers Fan
November 14 2013, 12:04PM
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@DoubleDIon

Well, if you're cherry picking items from Lowe's tenure as GM, then you should also include the trade to get Pronger from the Blues, the trade to get Roloson, the trade to get Visnovsky, etc.

However, as I stated, what EXACTLY has he done as a President, that has effected the Oilers roster and results in a negative way. Not his comments, not his demeanor, just his actions as President! I'm not saying there isn't any, but I'd like to hear exact details rather than speculations because your frustrated and want to stomp your feet because your hard earned money bought a jersey.

So go ahead, someone inform me. I want to hear it!

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#104 2004Z06
November 14 2013, 12:17PM
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birdieman wrote:

Fire the Coach really how can any one make decisions with Lowe & mCtavish looking over his shoulder. I believe Tom Renny was not a yes man and had to go I along with many others feel it is time to let go of the 80's with X oiler players and start fresh they (Lowe) has added Messier to the fold as an advisor. Tom renny was very well liked by fans and players. This has gone on for to many years.

Frustrated

I love the old boys club analogies....I have news for you all. Many teams have old boys clubs.....Colorado, Chicago, Philly, Pittsburgh NYR and soon to be Buffalo.

That argument is getting really old.

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#105 DSF
November 14 2013, 01:32PM
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15w40 wrote:

I'm beginning to wonder if there were any overtures made toward candidates like Jim Nill.

The more that this team deteriorates, the more I wonder if Jim Nill and guys of his ilk might have just given Lowe the "don't bother" message. He had received numerous offers to work for other teams before he jumped to Dallas.

I think there was zero chance Jim Nill would come to Edmonton unless there was a complete enema of the management starting right below Katz & finishing at basically with anybody that had to do with player/personnel issues.

Even that may not have been enough depending on how Katz wants to run his toy from YVR.

Jim Nill & management types like him would never come here. The Oilers will be stuck with puppets, former Oilers, or people with no concrete track record.

IMHO

Quite possible I suppose but I would wager Lowe didn't even inquire.

Agree that finding someone competent to work under Lowe might be a big issue.

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#106 $2H
November 14 2013, 04:16PM
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you're a clown - and probably worse at your "job" than Ryan Rishaug is at his. I wish you'd both go to Vancouver already..

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#107 Zarny
November 14 2013, 04:20PM
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Rama Lama wrote:

So sad to hear the ringing endorsement of Eakins.........it's very difficult for Mac T to admit that he made a mistake.

For all those people who continue to say it's all about our players and that none of them are any good, exactly where do we find good players?? Is there a factory where you can acquire these guys? No they are developed.......by the organization over a number of years, unless you are the Edmonton Oilers.

What Mac T should have said, is we are going to develop our players, and move them along slowly including time well spent in the AHL. No more drafting players and then developing them in the NHL. Every player has to prove themsleves in the minors........now I would be totally impressed by that statement.

Stating he is willing to trade what will prove to be another first-first rounder, is just plain stupid. Are we suppose to believe that he can turn this magic bean into a player/players, that can solidify our team? What so we can find another midget like Ference??

Sorry Mac T you will and can do better than that!

Who said none of the Oilers are good players?

Hall, Eberle, Nuge, Yak, Gagner, Perron, Ference, Schultz, Gordon, Petry are good players.

The top 6 F are too much of the same but they are all good players. 10-12 good players doesn't make a good team though.

You make an excellent point about developing players. The OKC Baron's first season was 3 years ago. Prior to that the Oilers didn't have a dedicated farm system.

Top end picks like Hall, Nuge and Yak can play in the NHL right away but 99% of draft picks can't. Not having a farm system to develop players certainly hurt the Oilers big time and is undoubtedly a factor as to why so many draft picks have failed to develop into NHL players.

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#108 Dog Train
November 14 2013, 04:50PM
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Firing the coach is the easy way out. The problem is that Mactavish seems to think that he will be able to get what he needs without sacrificing one of his core guys. He mentioned today that he wants to turn the team over to the 8-9 guys that he's identified as the team's core. If we assume that Hall, Eberle, RNH, Yakupov, Gagner (based on Mactavish's public praise for his 'character') and Justin Schultz form that core as well as acquisitions like Perron and Ference, there's not much left. Hemsky? Good luck getting more than draft picks or prospects for him at this point.

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#109 **
November 14 2013, 10:22AM
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I wonder what's the line in the sand, if there is any at all, for MCtavish to conclude he made a mistake and it is time to fire the coach.

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#110 **
November 14 2013, 11:26AM
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Spydyr wrote:

Easy,the system and the heart that beats in the players.

I would say the man behind the bench. I think Roy infects his players with enthusiasm and willingness to leave it all on the ice. Eakins has always struck me as a too high on himself guy who struggles to create empathy, let alone a bond with players. They talk about how he turned Nazem Kadri around, but that is just 1 player, and he is struggling as of late.

From the beginning Eakins was confrontational. With the media: "enjoy those donuts, it's the last time you'll see them". With the players: "they will have to stay after games to work out, I don't care who you are you'll be accountable".

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#111 Oilcan
November 14 2013, 11:30AM
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After how many years of being terrible and during coaches is it now on the players. Again it would be great to have a coach work well with this group and everything clicks but after 5 coaches I don't know if that exists. Yes Eakins has made some questionable decisions (gagner still playing center and given prominent minutes) but I would bet it is not Eakins philosophy to turn the puck over in our zone 8 times a game, or get cute with scoring chances instead of putting it on net.

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#112 Cold Hard Truth
November 14 2013, 11:43AM
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@dave

That means nothing. Coaches are often fired before their contract ends.

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#113 DoubleDIon
November 14 2013, 11:46AM
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Lochenzo wrote:

I've seen him play forward! Actually, Mike Green was the same way. The offence was always there but the defence took years to come around. The payoff was very good.

Except, you know that Mike Green actually put up enough offense to make up for his still "better-than-Schultz" defense right? He was the leading goal scorer and point getter in the entire NHL before the injuries hampered him. Schultz is an above average offensive guy, certainly not elite like Green at the same age. By Schultz's age he already had a 30 goal season and back to back 70+ point seasons. He was also way more physical than Schultz. Btw, he missed games in both the 73 and 76 point seasons and was over a PPG player in both. He was also a +63 combined in those seasons where he was Schultz's age. Kind of a silly comparison.

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#114 LOIL99
November 14 2013, 12:08PM
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DoubleDIon wrote:

Do you forget that Lowe was the GM that presided over the team during the sinking of the franchise? His comments about Bobby Ryan, Penner offersheet, Pronger trade, Weight trade, horrible draft record, not signing Glencross and Brodziak. I could list more of his moves as GM. I also think he had his fingers in Tambo's pie too, but there is no proof of that. The thing that bugs me the most is his lack of accountability and comments in the media. Two-tiered fans, six rings and general stupidity.

Half the moves you mentioned were good moves!!

Penner scored 20+ goals in 3 of 4 years on the Oilers.

Pronger got us, almost singlehandedly, to Game 7 of SCF. And then demanded a trade.

Glencross wanted too much money, he signed for less in Calgary.

He drafted Eberle, Gagner, Petry, Hemsky...

Don't get me wrong, I think Lowe needs to move on, but your examples of reasons why are hilarious.

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#115 Ike Hilliard
November 14 2013, 12:17PM
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Many of you in here sound worse than a nagging wife…

"Fire the coach"

"Fire Lowe" (actually agree with that)

"Fire McT"

"Trade Nail"

"Trade this…do that"

Its easy to sit here outside and criticize but where are all your ideas or suggestions??? Fire Eakins fine but who are candidates to replace him??

"We need trades" ya we do but i rarely see suggestions or ideas from the bunch who sit here and complain about things….

Do us all a favour and jump off the ship…maybe we can get rid of enough dead weight to turn this thing around both on the team and off!!

Just saying….

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#116 Drowning in Oil
November 14 2013, 12:24PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

I love the old boys club analogies....I have news for you all. Many teams have old boys clubs.....Colorado, Chicago, Philly, Pittsburgh NYR and soon to be Buffalo.

That argument is getting really old.

Wow, there are big diffences, maybe you just don't see it...... besides Buffalo, all the teams you mentioned have had success in recent years. The reason those old boys club guys have their positions is because they actually get results!! Explain to us all what our own Boys on the Bus have done!!! Big difference!

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#117 2004Z06
November 14 2013, 12:30PM
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CMG30 wrote:

Been lurking for awhile but I can't hold it in any longer:

The most ridiculous thing about this year (besides the absolutely horrendous amount of losing) is the singling out of one person for all the blame. Have we not learned yet? Remember how it was all coach MacT's fault? Well they got rid of him and how well did that turn out? Then it was all Horcoff's fault. Well they got rid of him this summer and boy did the team ever improve!

If Katz granted the wishes of half the residents of Edmonton and fired Lowe is anyone going to stand up and with a straight face tell me that this team is now a cup contender? Of course not because the biggest problem with the management of this team is not the people in charge, it's the AMOUNT of people who have been in charge. Stop the circus, the players need stability, support, consistency and accountability not mixed messages!

Granted every game they lose has a unique wrinkle but the overall problem with this team is with a lack of commitment to playing team defense. There are no quick fixes here, Pronger and Niedermayer combined couldn't right this ship at the moment, not until EVERY player commits to their teammates on every second of every shift that they are going to be where they are suppose to be, that their man is not going to score. EVERY player needs to commit to not give up the puck in either end of the rink without a bare knuckle brawl. Nobody is ever left alone in front of Dubnyk. Everybody needs to commit to the simple safe play: Blind passes have no place in the NHL. No one should attempt to carry the puck alone through 3 defenders. No one should attempt a cross ice pass through the entire opposing team, and so on.

Is this too much to ask of the players? NO! It's how every other team they've played this year has beat them. I'm just afraid that some of these players are talented enough that this is the first time anyone has actually asked.

Preach it brotha!

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#118 oildrops
November 14 2013, 12:39PM
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You cant count on management they have six rings and don't mind losing.

The team needs to fear losing!, hate it!, stop it!, don't get close to IT!.

I cant stop cheering for this team for the life of me.

I'm going to the Sharks game and going to yell some sh** and nobody going to stop me.

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#119 Hangin@Bangin
November 14 2013, 12:56PM
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@Clarko

Is this Kevin Lowe? Only Kevin could defend his revolting decisions that have put his team in the sewer ( thanks for pointing that out Brian Burke), who hit the nail on the head I must say. Yes that Visnovsky trade was stellar hey? We gave up Jarret Stoll and Matt Greene to eventually get Ryan Whitney & Brandon Davidson both of whom you will never see in the NHL again one never even came closing to cracking the big dance, Davidson making a career with 40 AHL games. I hope your just trolling for a response from the fans of the Oilers because if you are serious you make me sick. Excuse me while I go vomit.

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#120 6 ring circus
November 14 2013, 01:17PM
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I think its time we all forget about it,until Katz fires the old boy's club,and brings in an experienced management group, we will continue to be a bottom feeder,there is no accountability to the loyal fan base from the top of this organization to the bottom,name me one other sports team in any league that has a owner who is happy with a losing record 8 years in row and makes no changes, it's unheard of. I thought Katz becoming the owner of this team was going to be a good thing,man was I wrong, it's been a disaster.

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#121 acg5151
November 14 2013, 02:04PM
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Craig MacTavish has tried to solve more in his time in Edmonton than Tambo did in like 3 years. Let's see, he 1) Traded for Perron - a good move 2) signed Ference, a decent move that hasn't worked out 3) Brought Dallas Eakins in and fired Krueger - a questionable move but a move nonetheless. 4) Traded Horcoff and frees up 5.5 million in cap space being spent on a once great player who needed to move on. 5) Brought in a lot of depth on D - Grebeshkov, Larsen, so that if there were blueline injuries they would have NHL defensemen. Has kind of panned out. 6) Traded Smid to clear space to make a move, and signed Bryzgalov. Jury is still out on this one.

Craig MacTavish has made a valiant attempt to fix a broken team. The Oilers remind me of the last couple of episodes of season 2 when they realized 'the group is broken' and they tried to fix it. The Oilers are a broken team and now that the management realizes it they are trying to fix it.

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#122 DigDeepNBleedBlue
November 14 2013, 03:16PM
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pkam wrote:

One thing I notice in the past 3 years and is still happening.

We lose at least 80% of puck battle along the board.

Not sure if this is the coach's fault but it definitely has nothing to do with the system. In fact, Eakins explained his Swarm defense system in one of his practice presser, 'It is basically a standard D zone coverage, but when one of our player pinch the puck carrier along the board, another player will jump in to take away the puck.'. Basically, it is a system design to address our failure to win the puck battle along the board. Unfortunately, we lose those battle even with 2 on 1 most of the time, especially in our D zone. of course, it is again the coach's fault.

Yup. I get it.

"System. If your personnel can't do it, change the personnel or, hey, change the system to work within the parameters of the players you employ."

Not sure where we differ or if we actually do. Good points, though.

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#123 Ducey
November 14 2013, 04:27PM
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I am not really sure why a trade has to be coming. The season is lost.

Making a trade now for a big name defenseman might move this team to start playing .500 hockey for the rest of the season. Big deal. Its going to cost assets and is likely to wind up being detrimental in the future.

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#124 Juan Oxmano
November 14 2013, 04:54PM
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I would be very surprised if Bowman would have thrown Ganger out for a draw in the last 2 minutes of a game. Eakins has made bonehead moves right from the start. Looks like a fool is guiding a crap team. Both coach and team have rightfully earned such a crappy record. Hail the suck. P.S FIRE KEVIN LOWE

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#125 Do bolo
November 14 2013, 05:55PM
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I honestly believe that I could do a better job coaching this team right now versus what we have seen from Dallas Eakins. There are probably a lot of posters and readers who also could probably do a better job. I think what really causes the most hate for Eakins is his own crap don't stink attitude. Take a look in the mirror and see who is responsible for this embarrassment of a team this year.

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#126 Zamboni Driver
November 14 2013, 09:58AM
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Also...please tell me "Fenwick" is not really a thing??

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#127 D-Unit
November 14 2013, 10:00AM
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@Sutter

I agree. Only going to have Rookie NHL coaches trying to get a shot in the big to coach this "team". Maybe a coach who has been out of the league for a while would. Sign a 3 year deal, coach part of one and collect cheques for the rest of the contact. The Oilers are definitely not a stepping stone to a full-time NHL head coaching job at this point.

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#128 vetinari
November 14 2013, 10:56AM
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If the fans start a "swarm" at the next game, would it be considered a lynch mob?

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#129 Spydyr
November 14 2013, 11:12AM
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** wrote:

Compare Colorado and Edmonton. VEry similar make up, similar shortcomings up to last season. BOth rookie coaches. What is making the difference?, if that answer can be adequately answered then the Oilers can begin to turn this around.

Easy,the system and the heart that beats in the players.

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#130 TDSM31
November 14 2013, 11:22AM
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Now is the time for us to package our 2014 first round draft pick to get a solid veteran center or top pairing dman. Don't ask me who we should target, I'm too tired to look it up after losing yet another night of blissful sleep stewing over another loss.

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#131 LOIL99
November 14 2013, 11:58AM
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** wrote:

There is one man who can fire everyone: Daryl Katz.

Thanks...for not answering my questions. Anyone else?

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#132 Drowning in Oil
November 14 2013, 12:21PM
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Of course, no matter how bad this gets, Mac T is going to keep his coach, and all because of the excuse of this team needing to stick it out finally with a coach!! Unfortunately for Krueger, Renney, and Quinn, they were all hired by the previous GM. If anyone of them was hired by Mac T, they would also have complete job security!! Brutal coaching, brutal management, brutal team!!

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#133 rickithebear
November 14 2013, 12:22PM
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eakins system does not provide pressure on the funnel shoting area around the net. Draw a line from goal posts thru centers of the face off dots. it creates a funnel. then step out in 10 foot curved intervals 0-10 feet; 10-20 feet; 20-30 feet; >30.

the last two seasons 2011 to 2013 our team was all shots 7.93% 0-10 16% 10-20 12.5% 20-30 8.7% >30 4.2%

this year under Eakins All 11.9% 0-10 23.5% 10-20 22.2% 20-30 18.4% >30 4.8%

we saw a definite decline in results from our vets.

Smid 12-13 kruger All 7.5% 0-10 10.9% 10-20 9.6% 20-30 6.7% >30 6.3%

13-1 4Aekins All 13.15 0-10 36.4% 10-20 21.7% 20-30 27.3% >30 4.2%

Petry 11-12 All 6.9% 0-10 11.3% 10-20 11.4% 20-30 6.3% >30 4.7%

13-14 All 13.1% 0-10 21.4% 10-20 19.4% 20-30 20.7% >30 7.6%

we miss having Fistri cand potter

Fistric All 4.8% 0-10 10.5% 10-20 13.9% 20-30 0% >30 2.7%

Potter All 4.2% 0-10 23.5% 10-20 9.6% 20-30 2.1% >30 2.2% these guys pressured anything outside 10FT.

i thought it might be Goaltending, but N. schultz stood out! He choose not to pressure out side the funnel and staid with tried and true MIN play. you shall protect in front of the net. Not a box. The funnel. He has been penalized with reduced minutes. But results say it all. N. schultz 13-14 all 5.65 0-10 9.1% 10-20 8.1% 20-30 4.1% >30 4.25 just for reference

S. weber last year. Who has Rhinne All 7.15 0-10 12.2 10-20 14.4 20-30 9.3% >30 3%

No better than Smid & petry last year.

Chnge the system Aekins

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#134 GK1980
November 14 2013, 12:26PM
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Just listening to Oilersnow and they mentioned something that really turned a light bulb on. We were always tryig to improve the bottom six but we never focused on having good mentors in the top six. Smyth can't teach these kids how to score and be an offensive player in the NHL. the problem the past five years could point to the fact that he kids never had a true number on line mentoring them through the beginning of their careers. Tamby thought they were good enough to carry the team. Skill wise sure, but to play the NHL game, no. Just a theory.

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#135 madjam
November 14 2013, 12:33PM
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Is scamming of Oiler fans legal ?

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#136 OilCanFan
November 14 2013, 01:17PM
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Kevin Lowe appears arrogant, just look at his comments. Eakins is one of these: arrogant, stubborn, or not too bright - his coaching decisions have not been good and I don't see anything indicating accountability. It's my opinion that the biggest difference between Krueger and Eakins is the adaptability; it appeared that Krueger was adapting his systems to what he had where Eakins is trying to make his players adapt to his brilliant systems. It is possible Eakins is just a good AHL coach and that is all he will be?

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#137 Chainsawz
November 14 2013, 09:49PM
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Ducey wrote:

I am not really sure why a trade has to be coming. The season is lost.

Making a trade now for a big name defenseman might move this team to start playing .500 hockey for the rest of the season. Big deal. Its going to cost assets and is likely to wind up being detrimental in the future.

Who cares about the future? I want wins now.

Continuously losing has not helped this franchise one iota to date. Why repeat this madness?

Get winning and start building a winning culture.

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#138 seanjohn667
November 15 2013, 07:16AM
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Season Ticket Guy wrote:

Sadly I have already paid for my tickets. Selling them is a pain in the butt. The only people buying tickets are the fans of the visitors.

At the game last nite the only people cheering were the Fiddler family and the person that won the 50/50.

3 games in a row with 0 goals? So everything should remain the same? The "execs" make a lot of $$ it is up to them to figure this out and fix it. Up to now, they don't seem to have a solution. If I told my boss for 6 months straight that I don't know how to fix things at my job, I'd be gone. To do that for 8 years? No one in ANY job is given that leeway. OK - there is one - Pres of the Oil.

there really seems to something strange going on. How they can just watch a season just evaporate before our eyes and continue sit on their hands boggles the mind. You are supposed to try to win every year. Writing off a season in November is unforgivable.

this is very weird.

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#139 Lochenzo
November 14 2013, 10:11AM
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sizzay wrote:

There will be no major moves for a defenseman because the plan all along was to wait for Klefbom and Nurse. Add Ekblad (possibly) to that list now.

I hope we stand a chance at getting Kulemin or Steve Ott in the offseason, but I won't hold my breath.

Sadly, that's the only thing that brings me some satisfaction at this point. Dreaming of a future Oiler blueline of J Schultz, Klefbom, Nurse...and Ekblad.

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#140 outdoorzguy
November 14 2013, 10:28AM
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Muller wrote:

Something has to change....

"Bold Moves" or "Consequences"??

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#141 Mike Krushelnyski
November 14 2013, 10:30AM
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Muller wrote:

Something has to change....

Except it won't be what needs to change. The management is the biggest problem and the only facet of the club that is untouchable. It would be funny if it wasn't so sad.

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#142 Taylor Gang
November 14 2013, 10:48AM
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I wish that we could fire the head coach. I wish Lowe decided to hire people who can actually help this franchise. I wish the players on the team could put a 60 minute effort in. I wish that Katz cared for this team.

But I wish for many things.

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#143 **
November 14 2013, 11:04AM
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vetinari wrote:

If the fans start a "swarm" at the next game, would it be considered a lynch mob?

"Cerebrate, the enemy has deployed a psi disruptor, causing your broodlings to run amok without any control. They have began destroying the hive. The overlords have proved useless as well"

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#144 pkam
November 14 2013, 11:04AM
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Spydyr wrote:

We already know the wheel (Lowe) is cracked but that is not going to get fixed so you have to replace the tires. Or drive around on your rims 4-14.

Admit the mistake, fix it and move on.

The result of your solution is another flat tire. Now the question is how often do we plan to replace the flat tire.

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#145 dq
November 14 2013, 11:07AM
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Lots of people propping Krueger for last years flirtation with the playoffs. I'm Krueger neutral but ....

April 3rd they were in 8th place. They won 1 of their next 10 when things really mattered.

A collapse like that is partly because of players lack of experience. But it's also the coaches ability to prepare the team for meaningful games.

Grass is always greener and a lot of people suddenly viewing Krueger as a model coach.

Not arguing for / against Eakins (I actually kind of like what he's bringing). But I just wouldn't use last year as an argument for / against.

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#146 Cold Hard Truth
November 14 2013, 11:21AM
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The notion that we shouldn't fire Eakins just to save face is as silly and ill advised as it was to hire him and the first place.

Get the right coach for the job, and if that isn't Eakins, then get someone else. Period.

The real reason Eakins hasn't been fire yet is because to do so would be an admission of fault of MacTavish's part.

Eakins was a mistake to begin with. He was a mistake by a rookie GM, a GM whose hiring was also a mistake to begin with. It all leads back to the same source: a culture of patronage and entitlement with the Oilers organization. Until that is fixed, the Oilers problems will continue - albeit in differing manifestations.

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#147 Primo
November 14 2013, 11:27AM
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As a Flames fan and born and raised Calgarian I'm embarrassed at having the Oilers part of our great Province. Thank goodness the Flames sweater has the proud Alberta logo. Can you imagine that logo on an Oiler jersey?

My greater concern is that the Oilers will once again gain another top draft if not first overall and also be in line with next years McDavid sweepstakes. What a tragedy. All these young stars being forced to play for the Oilers with shattered dreams and a future of endless losing.

Wonder if Bettman should consider some major rule changes around future draft processes to immediately end this embarrassment ? !

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#148 LOIL99
November 14 2013, 11:31AM
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Real questions. Who can fire who?

1) Can Lowe fire MacT? 2) Can MacT fire Lowe? 3) Can Lowe fire Eakins? 4) Can Eakins fire Bucky and Smith? 5) Can Lowe fire Bucky and Smith?

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#149 DigDeepNBleedBlue
November 14 2013, 11:54AM
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Wow! It's ugly out there. Stay inside. Hell, get your ass in the storm shelter! The sky is pucking falling.

I think I'll risk it.

Is there a need for a trade. Yup, big hillbilly boy who can spell his own name, stands 7 feet tall and can play defence. That hasn't changed. But, at this point who and from where is completely speculative. So, lets not worry about what can't be controlled.

What can?

Effort. Can't teach that, though. It's something you need to find inside of yourself. You gotta dig deep and….. Man in the mirror. Right?

System. If your personnel can't do it, change the personnel or, hey, change the system to work within the parameters of the players you employ. Just a thought. But, many say it's not the issue. Me, not convinced. Work at it.

Lines and call-ups and demotions ARE something that can be controlled on a daily basis.

Jones and Acton on the demotion.

Call-up Eager and Lander.

I'd call up a D-man too, but there's no one.

Hall-RNH-Eberle They can do a lot. Was nice to see them back together for a spell last night.

Perron-Arcobello-Yakupov Arcobello is definitely growing on me every game. Smart kid and effort. Perron isn't quite back to early season form yet, but when he gets back he'll be a bad moe foe. That I love about him. Yak. Less b*tching. Just shut up and play…

Smyth-Gagner-Hemsky Lets see what happens….

Eager-Gordon-Lander Forecheck. Dig. Hit (Everyone needs to hit. Everyone!). Drive the net*.

*see last parenthesis and make the appropriate changes.

The defence: Throw out whatever you got and pray….

San Jose is going to expose a lot. Keep your eyes on the road. Remember that mirror thing.

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#150 15w40
November 14 2013, 12:34PM
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DSF wrote:

He hired Tambellini and allowed him to run the franchise into the ditch for 5 years.

He then hired MacT as GM despite the fact he had zero experience and while ignoring other candidates (like Jim Nill) who have much more experience and a winning track record.

Not recognizing that reeks of ignorance.

I'm beginning to wonder if there were any overtures made toward candidates like Jim Nill.

The more that this team deteriorates, the more I wonder if Jim Nill and guys of his ilk might have just given Lowe the "don't bother" message. He had received numerous offers to work for other teams before he jumped to Dallas.

I think there was zero chance Jim Nill would come to Edmonton unless there was a complete enema of the management starting right below Katz & finishing at basically with anybody that had to do with player/personnel issues.

Even that may not have been enough depending on how Katz wants to run his toy from YVR.

Jim Nill & management types like him would never come here. The Oilers will be stuck with puppets, former Oilers, or people with no concrete track record.

IMHO

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