The Way I See It

Robin Brownlee
November 22 2013 09:59PM

Winning, the saying goes, solves everything. While that's not true, at least as it pertains to a flawed team like the Edmonton Oilers, three straight victories has, at the very least, taken some of the edge off a decidedly and rightfully unhappy fan base.

After being booed off the ice by fans at Rexall Place just a week or so ago, the Oilers filed into their dressing room after a 4-1 win over the Florida Panthers Thursday and a 7-0 whitewash of the Columbus Blue Jackets to ovations from a capacity crowd. The Oilers started this much-needed three-game respite from futility with a win down the highway in Calgary.

In the big picture that is an 82-game NHL season, 7-15-2 isn't a whole lot better than the 4-15-2 record the Oilers took into this little roll, but it sure feels like it. It most certainly changes, however temporarily, the way fans feel about themselves and their hockey team today.

It might even have you feeling better about goaltender Devan Dubnyk, who has been a lightning rod for criticism after a decidedly horrendous start to the season. Fans have to be pretty happy with Dubnyk's performance during this three game stretch – the same people who were losing their minds after his first three games of the season.

Statistically speaking, Dubnyk is neither as inept as he appeared in those first three games (and several more along the way) nor the Vezina Trophy candidate he's looked like in the last three. When the dust settles after 82 games, I suspect Dubnyk will end up somewhere in the middle.

One extreme to the Other

Anybody who is saying, "Thanks for that insight, Captain Obvious," might want to take a look at some of the comments sections here from early in the season, be it Dubnyk's first three outings, or even the first month, for that matter. He was a bum. A joke. A brutal embarrassment. On and on.

While fans and media types are prone to qualifying their observations with "small sample size" these days, that pretty much went out the window as the venom was spewed here and on radio call-in shows when Dubnyk led the collective early season face plant. I don't mind the passion, by any means, but it's funny how a start abysmal beyond words plays hell with a reasoned approach when it comes to fandom.

Dubnyk allowed 13 goals on 85 shots in the first three games he played, recording Andre Racicot-like save percentages of .821, .839 and .885 in those games. In his last three games, Dubnyk has stopped 71 of 74 shots, going .943, 1.000 and, against the Panthers, .960.

With 157 games in the books (all on a bad team), I think it's safe to say we know what Dubnyk is – even if many forgot it for the first 18 games or so. In 2010-11, Dubnyk's save percentage was .916. In 2011-12 it was .914, followed by .920 last season. The numbers, again on miserable teams, show him to be a good, not great, NHL starter.

A good team, which the Oilers aren't yet, can win with Dubnyk. When this season is over, I'd be willing to wager that Dubnyk, who sits at 6-10-1 with an .896 save percentage today, falls right where he has the previous three seasons – in the .914 to .920 range.

Right in the middle between a rail car out of town and a Vezina Trophy.

WHILE I'M AT IT . . .

I can't figure out fans in this town when it comes to their perceptions of the media, although much of how they view the jobs being done by scribes and broadcasters is obviously based on how good or bad the Oilers are playing at any given time.

Reporters not willing to seek out Kevin Lowe and ask him why the hell he refuses to step down right now, if not bloody sooner – usually after a loss -- are fartcatchers and yes-men. Bought and paid for. Mouthpieces for the team and blah, blah, blah. And why don’t we ask Sam Gagner why he sucks so bad? What the hell is wrong with "you guys."

Then, when a reporter, namely Ryan Rishaug of TSN, presses Ilya Bryzgalov about why the Philadelphia Flyers paid him $23 million to go away and not play for them anymore, he's being an ass and a showboat and picking on the wrong guy because he just got here (and isn’t Kevin Lowe).

There was nothing wrong with the line of questioning Rishaug and others pursued with Bryzgalov during his first availability here. Those questions were asked and answered (very well by Bryzgalov, I thought). Then, you move on and judge Bryzgalov, as he suggested, by whatever his body of work turns out to be this season.

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

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#1 kgo
November 22 2013, 10:15PM
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love the fartcatcher moniker

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#2 srbuhr
November 22 2013, 10:16PM
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While it's great to see the win streak, Calgary, Columbus and Florida are not very good teams. Ferrence summed it up well after the Florida game indicating it's great to hear loud cheers for the team because they also heard the loud cheers against. This is still going to be a long season with this line up and this coaching staff. I am sure there will be more shots taken at Lowe, the players and reporters.

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#3 Oiler Al
November 22 2013, 10:23PM
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I agree, there is nothing wrong with asking the hard question, that all part of the gig, from both sides of the mike!

But why has no one asked the hard questions of Mr Lowe, the guy who knows something about winning.... while the team flounders at the bottom of the league , yet again.

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#4 Dave2
November 22 2013, 10:28PM
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It is because we are fans -from Wiki

The word first become popular in reference to baseball enthusiasts. (Fanatic itself, introduced into English around 1550, means "marked by excessive enthusiasm and often intense uncritical devotion". It comes from the Modern Latin fanaticus, meaning "insanely but divinely inspired"

So we can't help ourselves.

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#5 He Who Knows
November 22 2013, 10:28PM
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Are you Rishaug's bodyguard? Or perhaps you two went to a Timberlake concert and brought sexy back. Lol joking. Mainstream media just seems to give off a bad vibe, maybe it's the whole corporate thing. What do I know? You were in the business so I will take your word for it. Love the sarcasm in your articles as always.

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#7 gadzic
November 22 2013, 10:38PM
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I think the issue people had with Rishaug was the way in which he asked the questions not what he was asking about. Appeared at least by my ears to be going for a cheap sound bite or to be baiting Bryz .

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#8 TayLordBalls
November 22 2013, 10:39PM
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RB

Who peed in your cereal?

This is a team on the rise

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#10 Retsinnab5
November 22 2013, 11:06PM
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For some reason i have a good feeling about our next game... YAKCITY

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#11 Racki
November 22 2013, 11:14PM
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There are good and bad interviews by the media, whether you all want to admit it or not. I guess some people want to hear Bryzgalov get grilled about some of his issues.. not me. But I'll ease off the torch and pitchfork on anyone who doesn't ask questions I'm looking for.

Personally, I'd say Joanne Ireland is your ideal reporter, to me. She comes up with some interesting quotes from players and coaches.. much of which goes beyond the game. I also listen to you, RB, and Gregor, and really like the player interviews you guys have, although sometimes Gregor maybe needs to blast an air horn in your ear when you take the scenic route to ask your questions (I kid).

I like to hear the more personal side of players... by personal, I don't mean "why do you suck so bad", I mean stuff about players that we can't tell by watching a hockey game. Even though he won't admit it and still got paid loads, I know Bryzgalov hated being dumped by the Flyers because he wasn't good enough for them at his salary. I don't need it to be asked just to see if Bryzgalov will explode on the media. The media's job isn't to coddle players and welcome them to the city, no (although I wouldn't at all mind that), but I don't think it's their job to sniff out locker room problems for MacTavish and Eakins either.

On the flip side, if not for 24/7, I wouldn't know Bryz' wacka-doodle thoughts on bears and the universe. It may not be pertinent hockey information, and this is a piss poor example, but I like hearing the more non-hockey side about these guys and having them become more human to me. I loved Bryz' interview with the Ducks years ago where he started talking about how cold it was here. Some people hated that, but I loved it. Get these guys speaking openly about fun, non-hockey stuff! I think Gregor's writeups here where he interviews players can really get "deep" beyond the "we've got to give it 110% and stick to the game plan" canned answers.

A coach isn't going to reveal to the media too much about his team.. and player isn't going to give too much beyond the usual answers when it comes to hockey stuff, so a LOT of the questions asked by some media (which I believe you refer to as the "fart catchers") just seem like stupid questions that a player really isn't going to answer honestly... or worse yet, there will be certain media guys that will basically answer the question in the question, or you might have the people that ask ridiculously obvious questions (ex: do you think you need more guys to step up and be leaders on the ice than just the guys with the letters?..... no s--- Sherlock).

Anyways, I might use "media" term as a swooping generality, but there are definitely good questions and bad questions. Just because you get x minutes to ask questions it doesn't mean you need to eat it all up.

P.S. TLDR @ me. oops.

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#12 Lowe Expectations
November 22 2013, 11:32PM
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Beat reporters for the most part do a good job. The bad media is the between period player interview with a sweating, breathing heavy player being asked how it felt to score that goal. That I can do without.

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#13 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 22 2013, 11:50PM
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@Robin Brownlee

I hear what you are saying on the Dubnyk front.

Some of us lone voices were saying repeatedly that Goalie slumps aren't that abnormal and barring injury or age, sudden and persistent drop offs in play are very rare for established goalies.

On the media front, I mostly agree. I think a lot of the handwringing about Bryz was overstated and I'm not entirely clear on what Lowe has to do with it.

I think you are right a lot of the frustration was misdirected at Rishaug and others.

My minor beef was on two fronts: 1) I found the questions unnecessarily repetitive; 2) I found the ones about his conduct off the ice, with the media, etc. irritating and accusatory. I still can't figure out why being mildly interesting demands this kind of negative attention.

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#14 OilClog
November 23 2013, 12:06AM
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The way I see it, I want to hear Bryz talk about; why he chose Edmonton, is he prepared for the challenge, can he stay warm, can he help out players build a swagger.

What I don't want to hear; negative directed first interview as a presentation for the fan base.

When are the MSM going to realize the average man isn't watching the sport for Drama. We're watching it for the Sport. I want to read about why Bryz glove hand is top 5, what he prides his game on the most? Builds a better fan/player relationship. Over a bunch of negative Philly mistakes. Report the beautiful game on the damn ice!

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#15 D
November 23 2013, 12:26AM
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A major concern for some fans (myself included) is whether Dubnyk can play reasonably consistent when the real pressure is on.

I'll start getting excited again if that 7-15-2 record turns into a 10-16-2, 13-17-2, 16-18-2, and 19-19-2 record.

I'm admittedly out-to-lunch, but I still think this team can squeak into the playoffs.

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#16 DSF
November 23 2013, 12:36AM
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D wrote:

A major concern for some fans (myself included) is whether Dubnyk can play reasonably consistent when the real pressure is on.

I'll start getting excited again if that 7-15-2 record turns into a 10-16-2, 13-17-2, 16-18-2, and 19-19-2 record.

I'm admittedly out-to-lunch, but I still think this team can squeak into the playoffs.

45-10-3 would be one hell of a squeak.

After Calgary, Vancouver and Anaheim won tonight, the Oilers chances of making the playoffs have dropped to 00.20%

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#17 DSF
November 23 2013, 12:41AM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

I wouldn't cross the street to see a Timberlake concert. That's Rishaug's thing.

Like I said, I understand the passion of fans in this town, but I think some of that gets directed at the wrong people.

Fans fixate on Lowe and I understand why, but the idea that nobody has criticized his tenure here when there is plenty of evidence to the contrary is a fantasy.

It was also puzzling to me why Rishaug took heat for his line of questioning. Those questions, in the context of a first availability with Bryzgalov, had to be asked.

I think you have to admit Lowe has gotten a pretty easy ride in Edmonton.

After 8 years out of the playoffs, virtually every team in the league would be dumping their hockey executives and looking for different answers.

That Lowe was made to feel uncomfortable by ONE reporter in his presser announcing the MacT hire doesn't change that all that much.

Has anyone asked him DIRECTLY why MacT was the best man for the job?

Has anyone asked him DIRECTLY why he thinks Eakins was the best available coaching hire?

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#18 Tim in Kelowna
November 23 2013, 12:49AM
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Nice take, Rubin. But I will note that the fans calling the local media yes-men and the fans criticizing Rishaug for asking Bryzgalov a few "tough" questions are probably not the same people.

It is true that fans in this town get a little carried away when the team is losing, but imagine being a hockey scribe in a place like Sunrise, Florida: zzzzzzz

Fans in Edmonton care, and I don't think it's a stretch to suggest that they deserve a few seasons of winning hockey. The stupid comments will surely taper off once the Oilers become competitive on a regular basis.

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#19 DCC
November 23 2013, 12:54AM
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I don't have an issue with Bryzgalov being asked about the situation in Philly however...who was the guy asking irrelevant and yes, embarrassing questions about the weather? Was that Rishaug? In my opinion, that's where the questioning crossed the line.

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#20 Slyers
November 23 2013, 01:05AM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

I wouldn't cross the street to see a Timberlake concert. That's Rishaug's thing.

Like I said, I understand the passion of fans in this town, but I think some of that gets directed at the wrong people.

Fans fixate on Lowe and I understand why, but the idea that nobody has criticized his tenure here when there is plenty of evidence to the contrary is a fantasy.

It was also puzzling to me why Rishaug took heat for his line of questioning. Those questions, in the context of a first availability with Bryzgalov, had to be asked.

What bothered me was Bryz had already gave a well thought out response to Ryan's line of questioning, but Ryan basically reframed and repeated the same question because Bryz did not take his bait. That is when it became obvious to most what Ryan was really up too. As for why there is a difference between questions for. Bryz or Gagner, I think you answered your own question. Bryz just arrived hear and should for the most part be judged on what he does hear, while the MSM seem to give some Oilers a lot of slack for their inferior play ( some fans as well) Dubnyk and Gagner in my mind seem to get a " get out of jail free" card far to often IMHO. As always enjoy reading your work,

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#21 GVBlackhawk
November 23 2013, 01:05AM
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@Robin Brownlee

Fans were rightfully upset with Dubnyk because his 'slump' has significantly contributed to a lost season. The Oilers were out of the playoff picture one month into the season largely in part to abysmal goaltending (both Dubnyk and Labarbera). The fact that Dubnyk's play is regressing to his average is of little comfort at this point.

With respect to the mainstream media's handling of Kevin Lowe, there has not been much pressure on him. MSM reporters know that Lowe is petty and might restrict access to the team. Neither the Sun, the Journal, TSN, or Sportsnet have cast a spotlight on Lowe's management record. There have been a few sporadic articles, but nothing that would constitute real media pressure. Even Yakupov faced more media scrutiny from his comments last week than Lowe has received in his tenure in management.

Other than his six cups debacle, Lowe's record of futility has flown under the radar of most fans -- the blame being deflected by ex-coaches and Steve Tambellini. Has Lowe even given one interview since that press conference? Would Rishaug grill Lowe like he did Yakupov or Bryzgalov? I don't think so.

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#22 Larry
November 23 2013, 01:11AM
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OHHH DSF is a computer, now i get it!

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#23 Larry
November 23 2013, 01:20AM
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1. hows are d? 2. hows are 2c? 3. getting better... 4. hurtin, special teams are rising 5. that gags, yac hemmer line is alright 6. coach finally has nuge, hall, eberle back 7. goalie?

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#24 Serious Gord
November 23 2013, 01:23AM
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I think I have been pretty consistent as a fan:

I think that relative to many other media/sports markets edmontons sports journos are lapdogs who only on very rare occasions bite the hand that they think feeds them (the six rings presser being an especially unique occasion that delivered the very last Time Lowe has faced th public since - even the media I think was surprised by lowes retreat).

I had no real issues with the Bryz interview; he could have shut down the proceedings any time he wanted, there was no badgering - nothing like he would have gotten in Philly.

But your point is valid for many, many others...

Regarding dubnyk. I think the old adage regarding stats and lies applies: he is very good when the pressure is off. Now that the team has no hope of contending he plays above average; when a game really really matters (and how many have we had of that type in the last few years?) he reverts to the flight instinct - clenching rather than expanding; retreating rather than attacking; out of the 'zone' rather than in it. And clearly management thinks - based on their actions in the preseason - the same.

From a quest for the cup perspective this team is a thalidomide baby - stunted in so many ways by the smack of favoritism and nepotism in its bloodstream. What the hell is Acton doing on this team and arcobello toiling in the minors? What is the impact on morale of such blatant nepotism? This team is going nowhere until the owner goes into rehab for it just as the flames purged the sutterites. Yet the media is largely mute on this galling instance. (Did anyone really go after MacT or Eakins about it?)

In conclusion, the press is not totally in the bag for the teams management, but past and current actions (or lack thereof) do justify the lack of trust on the part of fans regarding the press' lack of backbone. The media always seems to be one step behind the fanbase in criticizing/demanding management be held to account.

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#25 spliff
November 23 2013, 01:33AM
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You can try and stand up for your journalistic brethren all you want Robin, but the bottom line is KLowe and his yes-men have gotten off pretty lightly.

Edmonton, although growing rapidly, is in many ways still like a small town, where everyone knows everyone. That may be a reason why the journalists here have given KLowe and MacT a pretty easy ride.

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#26 Racki
November 23 2013, 01:42AM
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DSF wrote:

45-10-3 would be one hell of a squeak.

After Calgary, Vancouver and Anaheim won tonight, the Oilers chances of making the playoffs have dropped to 00.20%

I'm a firm believer that the Oilers eliminated themselves from the playoffs weeks ago, but I think it's crazy to think a team would need 109 points just to MAKE the playoffs (to my knowledge an 8th place team has never had 100+ points let alone 109 - although a 7th place team has)

Mid-high 90s should still be the number to aim for, for teams. All the top-8 Western teams won't maintain this crazy pace they're on right now.

But again, no chance the Oilers will make the playoffs this year though, so no sense in anyone getting their hopes up after the Oilers steamrolled a couple of bottom-feeder teams.

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#27 Moog's helmet
November 23 2013, 02:27AM
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Not much the media can do if KLowe isn't making himself available for interviews. When KLowe lost it at the press conference the MSM especially Tychkowski as I recall really murdered him for it the next day. (How he didn't have a scripted answer for the obvious "old boys club" question still boggles the mind.) If a media member felt someone should be fired for the Oilers poor performance this year they couldn't write it about Lowe because he is adamant he has nothing to do with those decisions. Unless you wanted to insinuate he is lying. That's the kind of story that would make "sources close to the team" stop talking to you.

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#28 Ron
November 23 2013, 04:02AM
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Well now, i'd like to thank you for pointing out to all of the us ticket buying fans that the ineptness of Katz' ownership and management down to the people who clean the rink post-game are not the problem it is the fans who are responsible for team performance since '06. Who'd-a-thunk it?

It is that point of view spelled out so clearly by you that shows me why most if not all Edmonton media types are thought of the way they are.

So once again we the fans are not seeing what we are seeing. It's just our faulty perspective.

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#29 NJ
November 23 2013, 05:09AM
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@RB Why you haz to be so mad?

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#30 Oilerz4life
November 23 2013, 06:03AM
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Rishaug is a douche.

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#31 madjam
November 23 2013, 06:18AM
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DSF wrote:

45-10-3 would be one hell of a squeak.

After Calgary, Vancouver and Anaheim won tonight, the Oilers chances of making the playoffs have dropped to 00.20%

The biggest concern for now , is this team good enough to finish in top 8 over the next 60 games - not whether we make the playoffs as those odds do not favor our team with such a poor start . I don't believe we are , unless they can trade for some better defence in the interim and Dubbie and/or Breeze plays well .

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#32 Oiler Al
November 23 2013, 06:22AM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

Funny you'd bring up the "something about winning" comment from Lowe when saying nobody asks him or management tough questions.

That quote came from Lowe because reporters were asking tough questions and he didn't like it.

The reality, at least as I see it, is a segment of fans aren't going to to be happy until Lowe is gone and if they feel that way, fine. If you're frustrated Lowe is still here, don't point at the reporters in this town like they can fire him but won't, or that they don't ever ask tough questions, because they do. That's a fact.

Blame the guy who decides if Lowe keeps collecting a pay cheque. It damn sure isn't the reporters who make that call.

Robin, yes Lowe didn't like it, pulled a hissy fit and has not been seen since. I bet if the Oilers record would be reversed he would be the mouthpiece for the team all day long.

Yes, I do blame the guy who signs Lowes paycheck, he should be first on the interview list... good luck with that... You can catch him at most Canuck games or at the draft table next year.This guy has his finger on the pulse of the team.. however faint it maybe.

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#33 pelhem grenville
November 23 2013, 06:51AM
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...oh Robin I long for the days when a 'good scribe' was getting a healthy paycheque from Bill Tuele each time he got on the media plane to travel with the club and write nothing but what Peter Pocklington wanted to read.

The likes of Matheson and Cole back in the day weren't really part of those members of the media that fed freely from the trough provided by the Oiler organization but the bunch I ran with were firmly in the back pocket of the Oiler Club...how could you NOT take the payola if you were writing the features in the frickin' game day programs year after year!!!

Then one day at the Coliseum media dining area the Journal scribes & photogs stopped eating the provided for pre-game meal siting that this free food w/ beverages were in fact in conflict with how they reported and showed Oiler players in "good light"... ... so the wise old powers that be at the Journal started paying the Oiler Club for their employee meals at Oil games at the start of the year and became immune to any sort of bias that the other guys at the other paper were bathing in freely.

So then no one at the Journal had any problem exposing certain members of the team to public ridicule when they dug up drug scandals and rumors that turned out to be true all along. The other guys had to play catch up quite a bit when the "Urinal" broke nasty scoops and news reporters, not sports reporters were turning out scurrilous pieces on player lifestyles and proclivities.

Oh how I long for those days ...

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#34 HOFFFF
November 23 2013, 06:57AM
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Rishaug works for the Toronto Sports Network so it doesn't matter what he does or says. If local media was seeking to discredit or embarass our own players, then I would have a problem with that, unless of course it was deserved. As far as Bryz's comments about bears and the universe, thats hilarious, and we all say stupid sh*t but these guys just happen to have a mic or camera in thier face at the time. Scott Oake is another tool. Can't stand listening to him and his absurd questioning. Loved it when Penner shut him down.

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#35 gcw_rocks
November 23 2013, 07:21AM
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If those same reporters asked Lowe, MacT, and Gagner tough questions, no one would have blinked at the questions asked of bryz. It's because those reporters cherry picked when to ask the tough questions that makes them look so bad.

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#36 Fresh Mess
November 23 2013, 07:50AM
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Completely agree with you RB. The vitriol towards Dubnyk has been over the top. The fanboys foaming at the mouth to defend their lover Yakupov was pretty sad also. The most hilarious oft repeated bit has been blaming the assistant coaches.

This teams problem is it's management. It starts with the owner and his right hand man Lowe.

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#37 MessyEH!
November 23 2013, 07:56AM
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I think everyone of us relaxed, a little, after the Doobie and Buzz tandem was rolled out by MacT.

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#38 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
November 23 2013, 08:04AM
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@Fresh Mess

This comment is kind of inane.

Dubnyk was utterly horrible to start the season, like sub-AHL bad. He deserved a lot of the criticism that was lobbed his way.

You're damn right I'm going to defend a first overall pick that broke Stamkos' junior scoring records and who hasn't played even a full season yet.

So you consider Smith and Bucky to be 'the guys' going forward then? Even though Eakins was saddled with them and was no doubt told to roll with it?

Lowe certainly needs to go, but firing him isn't going to vault this team into contention. There are problems at every level of the franchise.

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#40 Thumby
November 23 2013, 08:31AM
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Larry wrote:

1. hows are d? 2. hows are 2c? 3. getting better... 4. hurtin, special teams are rising 5. that gags, yac hemmer line is alright 6. coach finally has nuge, hall, eberle back 7. goalie?

How's "are" grammar? I'd say hurting... bad. Sorry, just couldn't stop myself.

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#41 war
November 23 2013, 08:46AM
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Great article Robin,as for all the fans lets focus on positives,we are getting good goaltending,great special teams,hall nuge and ebs are together,yaks coming on,perron is on fire!yes we beat a couple of bottom teams to build a bit of momentum,BUT LAST TIME I CHECKED WE ARE A BOTTOM TEAM!so to start the transition to a mid-pack team we need to start beating those teams,time to roll with the oil,they wont make the playoffs but will finish the season as a 500 hockey club,witch means progress has been made!Lowe does suck but Mact deserves time-he got rid of horcoff,got gordon signed,traded mps for parron,signed bryz to help stop the bleeding so although he doesnt get an A+ he does get a solid B for his first 6 months in office!

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#42 Harlie
November 23 2013, 08:48AM
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I'm still not sold on Dubs. Put a fork in this season anyhow.

And any "fan" that criticizes Rishaug for asking the tough questions for us is an idiot. Least Ryan has the balls to stand up to these millionaires face to face and put the heat on. That can't be easy, so props to him.

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#44 Chainsawz
November 23 2013, 09:20AM
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I won't say the right questions aren't being asked by reporters to MacTavish or Eakins. But I will say once they give their "round about and dodge it" answer, there's no follow up or accountability. When Shauger had Yakupov and Bryz in his crosshairs, he was going to fire away till either time ran out or he got the juicy quote he was fishing for. To a certain extent the same would apply to Gregor and Yak.

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#45 camdog
November 23 2013, 09:23AM
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Few thoughts:

DD was horrible to start the season, but so was Lunquist. There were about dozen starting goalies that struggled with the new rules, none as bad DD though.

The team struggled to adjust to the new system brought in my the new coach didn't help things out. Call it what we want 2 coaches in less than 50 games is not good for kids.

Team has wrong mix of forwards, Gregor's been questioning the organisation in this respect for a long time.

Any other market and K-Lowe's fired and there is no booing. The irony is if the building's empty he's gone.

When Burke made those comments about Lowe during the Penner signing I was made at Burke. Now I understand he was right.

Rishaug's questions were annoying during the press conference were annoying and childish, but they weren't a reason to turn all angry on him, his body of work other than this moment is pretty good. He cares about this team and his frustrations came through.

And worst of all the music at the games is horrible, play some dam music to pump us up rather than mellow crap a doo.

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#46 Thumby
November 23 2013, 09:30AM
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For fun - I'd like to compare responses from DSF and RB on this set of questions - You both were/are guys in the media who will ask a tough question and will call it as he sees it and can live with the consequences. So my main questions for you both are as follows: Do you think Lowe, and by extension Katz, are oblivious to how terrible their ability to guide this franchise looks to all concerned who follow the NHL?

Do you think they feel any embarrassment about this mess they've built?

Do you think that they really think they are doing a "great job"?

Do you think Katz thinks a change might be needed?

I know the above questions will require some speculation from you but I'd love to hear a reporter pull out his brass balls and ask Lowe if he would defend his track record and explain what he'd done to justify keeping his job this long. Of course, said reporter would need to be one who was retiring that week as I'm sure his "brass balls" would be "blackballed" permanently. But I'm sure the sound bite of Lowe's response would make the "Six Rings" hall of fame!

I remember laughing when Lowe pissed off Buffalo and Anaheim with his RFA attacks but now I see why Burke was so pissed and said what he did...Lowe is obviously a buffoon! Yet Lowe maintains his position no matter how bad he's doing. IMO, it's "who you know" rearing its ugly head...or else he's got some nice polaroid's of Katz with some 80's big hair hookers safely tucked away in the safety deposit box.

To me, the amount of vitriol the fans and NHL at large have been spewing about the combined sum of turd that we have for a management team has been ignored by the Oilers brain trust (BTW, Katz is the one with the brain in "brain trust"), and our media should have a serious case of self examination and ask themselves why has Katz let this go on so long?

I guess the simple answer is if Katz gets his cash from the full house at Rexall he's not going to change a thing.

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#47 OilFanInVan
November 23 2013, 09:31AM
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DSF wrote:

45-10-3 would be one hell of a squeak.

After Calgary, Vancouver and Anaheim won tonight, the Oilers chances of making the playoffs have dropped to 00.20%

"So you're saying there's a chance..." Lloyd Christmas

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#48 Thumby
November 23 2013, 09:33AM
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camdog wrote:

Few thoughts:

DD was horrible to start the season, but so was Lunquist. There were about dozen starting goalies that struggled with the new rules, none as bad DD though.

The team struggled to adjust to the new system brought in my the new coach didn't help things out. Call it what we want 2 coaches in less than 50 games is not good for kids.

Team has wrong mix of forwards, Gregor's been questioning the organisation in this respect for a long time.

Any other market and K-Lowe's fired and there is no booing. The irony is if the building's empty he's gone.

When Burke made those comments about Lowe during the Penner signing I was made at Burke. Now I understand he was right.

Rishaug's questions were annoying during the press conference were annoying and childish, but they weren't a reason to turn all angry on him, his body of work other than this moment is pretty good. He cares about this team and his frustrations came through.

And worst of all the music at the games is horrible, play some dam music to pump us up rather than mellow crap a doo.

This^

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#49 S cottV
November 23 2013, 09:45AM
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The Oilers are a team that should be at 500 with a chance to rally for a playoff spot this year. Eakins blew this season away by over doing the change process. Should have picked his spots and run more familiar systems to start the season. Ease in change over time. The result - overly confused the player group and cost a lot of unnecessary losses. Oilers got the goaltending you might expect given the level of new systems failure that gave up way too many glaring scoring chances against. Being totally out of the playoffs in Nov was preventable. Rookie Coach hired by a rookie GM hired by an out of touch - old boys club VP.

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#50 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
November 23 2013, 09:49AM
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I've noticed the crap music too. Didn't they play a five minute Adele song right before puck drop a while ago? She's got a killer voice, but pump up music Adele is not.

We need Zombie Nation as our goal song again! Something the fans can chant along with. I can't remember which team uses the chorus from Bro Hymn by Pennywise, but that's gotta be the best goal song in the league right now.

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