Linus Omark Recalled

Jonathan Willis
November 06 2013 08:01AM

 

So. That happened.

It feels like it's been a long time coming, but the Oilers have decided to call-up Linus Omark.

The Lineup

The interesting item here (or at least one of them) is the timing. Ryan Smyth played last night, which went some distance toward neutralizing the Oilers' need for a left wing. Here's what the forward lines looked like against Florida:

  • Hemsky - Nugent-Hopkins - Eberle
  • Smyth - Gagner - Yakupov
  • Jones - Gordon - Arcobello
  • Gazdic - Acton - Eager

Where does Omark fit in that group, and who comes out for him?

The first task is to find him a spot in the top-nine, and that seems pretty straight-forward even if we assume no injury. The fourth line struggled badly last night, and I'd guess that Ben Eager rotates out and Ryan Jones moves down to right wing. Smyth gets bumped down to the third line with Gordon and Arcobello, and Omark slots in with Gagner and Yakupov on an all-offence line.

There are other ways to do it, but there seems at least to be a spot for him in the rotation.

The window for Omark to make an impression is narrow here: Taylor Hall and Jesse Joensuu and David Perron are all out of the lineup with injury, and if even one or two of them get back and Omark hasn't done much he'll be on his way back to the farm.

More to Come?

Rumour has it the Oilers and the New York Rangers have been talking trade, with the Rangers in bad need of a skilled winger. Could it be that there's a trade in place for one of the Oilers' wings? 

Because that's certainly one way to read this recall. If an Ales Hemsky (or maybe even Nail Yakupov) is heading out of town, there's suddenly a slot on a skill line that needs filling and Omark's the only really viable candidate for the role. 

Maybe there's nothing more to this than the coach being unhappy with his lines and deciding those guys from the farm did such a nice job injecting some scoring into the lineup that it makes sense to add one more. But it's certainly possible that there's another shoe left to drop.

Recently by Jonathan Willis

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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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#1 Shooter
November 06 2013, 08:32AM
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Perfect. The Oil are badly in need of an undersized, offensive minded forward who doesn't back check. What the hell, bring him up. This is just another example of how poorly constructed this organization is. It's ok for a team to have a couple guys like that. Tampa has St. Louis, Chicago has Kane, Dallas has Ray Whitney. But with Oil it's three full lines worth of wimpy, gritless, undersized stick handlers. No team in the NHL ever won a cup with a team like this. No team in the NHL ever made the playoffs with a team like this.

Great win in Florida last night by the way. Way to hold a lead. Now all they have to do is win 19 more in a row and they're back in contention.

Here's the new chant I hope the fans start doing at Rexall.

"Kevin Lowe has got to go, Kevin Lowe has got to go, Kevin Lowe has got to go!"

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#2 Duke
November 06 2013, 08:56AM
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I can't figure this move out at all. There is no arguing the consensus that the Oilers need to do something to get bigger, instead we keep on getting smaller.

Id Robbie Schremp still available? He's probably next.

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#3 DSF
November 06 2013, 10:26AM
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NJ wrote:

RE Yakupov getting traded.

79 Games. 23 Goals. 23 Assists.

Those are Steven Stamkos rookie year stats.

Until Yak has AT LEAST 82 games under his belt, he gets a pass in EVERY way. He competes more than most on the oilers and the days that he doesn't seem lost, he shows some brilliant flashes. One day he'll learn to use his team mates to set him up and it'll be one time city all night long.

Currently he is ahead of Stamkos statistically (in rookie year, 82 game comparison)... to part with him now may be us parting with a future 40 or even 50+ goal scorer.

I'd rather see Eberle go than see Yak go. We know exactly what Eberle is and brings, and while he is probably a 30 goal scorer on a good team and I've always loved him being Mr. Clutch... Yak hits and shows REAL passion. I believe in a couple years, he'll be that transformed number one guy with more size than he currently has and he'll be every goalie's nightmare.

SO. Unless a #1 d man is coming back (Seth Jones would be a good fit, but I prefer him playing with Shea Weber for the year), Yak should stay and any of Eberle, Hemsky, Gagner and whatever d prospects should be on the trade block.

My .02.

Stamkos posted those numbers as an 18 year old...Yakupov is 20.

When Stamkos was 19, he scored 51G 44A 95P

When Stamkos was 20, he scored 45G 46A 91P

Also worth noting, Nail Yakupov has the worst plus/minus in the NHL at -13.

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#4 Spydyr
November 06 2013, 08:25AM
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Please drop the other shoe. This team is in terrible need of heart, grit and some mean. Let it be Hemsky or Gagner gone.

I would also love to see Dubnyk waving goodbye like he waved at the third Florida goal last night.

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#5 Mr common sense
November 06 2013, 08:58AM
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Spydyr wrote:

They better score five because the other team is going to score four.

Wow, the shortest, physically weakest and worst defensive line in the history of the NHL

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#6 Spydyr
November 06 2013, 09:03AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Just a personal observation here. I know it's fashionable to slam smaller players that aren't overtly physical as gritless, gutless wimps.

But I can't help noticing that Sam Gagner has come back early from a broken jaw, and the last few years has done things like fight to avenge a dirty hit.

I can't help noticing that Ales Hemsky throwing himself into a shot block and then making a pass from his knees started the rush that led to Taylor Fedun's goal last night.

I couldn't help noticing Linus Omark gritting through a vicious hit to the head, then multiple leg injuries and keep playing. It was funny talking to the guy after the game, with ice-packs strapped at various places, and listening to him explain how frustrated he was - not that he was taking a beating, but that he was generating chances and they weren't turning into goals.

I get that the Oilers are lopsided in favour of guys that lack size and perhaps cheat a little too frequently for offence. I get that sticking a Wayne Simmonds-type in the lineup rather than an Ales Hemsky-type would add an extra dimension that the team is currently lacking.

But for the most part, I don't get the attacks on the character of these guys. Yes, Gagner and Omark and Hemsky are all on the small side, and all can be frustrating to watch at times. But do we really believe they're terribly lacking in heart?

They are hockey players. Professional NHL players. It is expected , that is why they are millionaires. Guys do the same stuff in a beer league for pride and their teammates. Something the Oilers could use. Playing and standing up for each other.

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#7 mrBacon
November 06 2013, 09:23AM
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I had the most terrible nightmare where the Oilers were so bad that they actually had to call up Linus Omark.

May God help us all.

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#8 Deep Insider
November 06 2013, 09:48AM
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Jeremy S. wrote:

Omark has been recalled so the Oilers can finally pull the trigger on that Shea Weber deal. It is about time!

Wrong!!! Big Oiler-Ranger trade going down in hours - involves 8-10 players in total!

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#9 GriffCity
November 06 2013, 09:26AM
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I dont mind this call up. I liked what we saw in Pitlick but he got injured in the PHX game and I hope Omark can contribute. Who is getting sent out of town? It better not be Ales Hemsky, this guy had dont everything he has been asked this year, including sacrificing his body to block shots. I am hoping that we will see Yakupov sent to NYC for Del Zotto. I really wanted Yak to turn into that Bure type player but I dont think he will and frankly, we dont have time to wait for his development to maybe happen or not. I would hate to see Hemsky go at this point, I do not think he is part of the problem.

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#10 The Towel Boy
November 06 2013, 08:11AM
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#11 Spydyr
November 06 2013, 08:58AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Let's compromise.

You can have heart, grit and some mean if I can banish the entire fourth line to the minors where they belong and they're replaced with actual NHL players.

I like compromise and have no argument concerning the fourth line going. Even with the fourth line replaced the team still needs functional toughness in the top six. At least two players who have some nasty and can play the game.

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#12 Mr common sense
November 06 2013, 08:59AM
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Steve Ott

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#13 tileguy
November 06 2013, 10:42AM
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DSF I would be interested in your thoughts with the rangers on who should come back for Yak. Hemsky is off the table as he has low value to all teams except the oilers.

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#14 Spydyr
November 06 2013, 09:00AM
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smytty's halfclapper wrote:

Can anyone clear this up for me - why don't we have Arcobello playing center and Gagner on the wing? Gagner won 22% of draws last night, and 9% the game before. He's not a great skater, and while Arcobello isn't much better, he does have more of a presence at the faceoff dot.

I cringe every time Gags takes an O-zone draw, especially on the PP... wasted chance!

It is because he is the coach's son. Oh wait that is the other lousy center. You are exactly right IMO.

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#15 Keon14
November 06 2013, 08:57AM
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Jon: do you know if Yak has to clear waivers to be sent down to OKC? If not, then a stint in OKC could boost his confidence.

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#16 derrickhands
November 06 2013, 09:40AM
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In part it has do to do with Omark size, but on the whole Omark is a puckhog that likes to hold on to the puck too long looking for the perfect shot. This results all too often of him getting stripped of the puck giving the opposition a odd man rush advantage. He still hasn't learned that hockey is a team game and to play in his own end.

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#17 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:12AM
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TigerUnderGlass wrote:
Why not simply use "draft year +"?

Because that doesn't help him here. He will do so when it is beneficial, not before.

Draft year + helps me just fine.

How did Stamkos do in his draft year +1?

51G 44A 95P

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#18 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:13AM
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shanetrain wrote:

@DSF

You are going to compare Yak to Stamkos?

Ok. Elite company.

However, I do not see a Lecavalier or St Louis on Edmonton's roster.

No I'm not.

Some other poster tried to though.

They're not even in the same area code.

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#19 Doomoil
November 06 2013, 09:06AM
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Keon14 wrote:

Jon: do you know if Yak has to clear waivers to be sent down to OKC? If not, then a stint in OKC could boost his confidence.

He's not eligible to go down to OKC and would have to return to Juniors.

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#20 David S
November 06 2013, 12:18PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

I think Sam's eagerness to return had more to do with Arcobello eating his lunch than anything else.

I have a lot of respect for Sam's compete level, but as I have stated many times, his defensive liabilities and lack of faceoff prowess do not make him a centerman. he is better off on the wing, or used in a package deal for a trade.

The guy bleeds copper and blue, but this team does not get better with him at 1C or 2C.

Do you want to give up a 65 point 2LC? Because that's what Gagner is now.

If you want a guy the size of say Boyd Gordon with the same faceoff abilities who can also put up those kind of points points, join the lineup. Every team in the league wants more of those players.

Trade Gagner and you need to get back at least as much in scoring. It won't happen because those guys are either locked down or far more expensive. Not to mention every freaking team in the league knows that's what we need. There's simply no deals out there where we won't get taken to the woodshed or I have to believe MacT would have already pulled the trigger.

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#21 Deep Inside ....
November 06 2013, 11:30AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

No, no… the entire 23 man roster of both teams is being swapped and then swapped again, but the second time only 22 players are swapped, one remaining (like in musical chairs). they'll do that 22 more times until they are back to where they started except they will have exchanged vendors.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3eNPO8nAE0

You will see in 1-2 hours!!!! I hope Oiler fans are ready for this- includes a couple surprises!

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#22 David S
November 06 2013, 04:29PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

Not a fan of that stat. I prefer actual numbers rather than predictions. A lot can happen over the other 34 games. Too many variables.

Unfortunately that was the stat that got Sam a new contract and would be the evaluation point for the rest of the league too. That and his outstanding PK and PP play.

He may not fit into your definition of success because he doesn't punch faces much or deliver crushing body checks, but Sam is a pretty valuable player because (healthy) he helps a team put up W's by contributing the things team success is determined by in the standings - G's and A's.

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#23 Jeremy S.
November 06 2013, 08:10AM
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Omark has been recalled so the Oilers can finally pull the trigger on that Shea Weber deal. It is about time!

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#24 The Towel Boy
November 06 2013, 08:11AM
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#25 bwar
November 06 2013, 10:49AM
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Yakupov straight across for Rick Nash. Immediately after the trade, Rick Nash calls a press conference to announce his retirement.

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#26 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:09AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

This is a completely valid point. Age is a very good indicator of true talent. That's why you don't evaluate "rookies" (for example) when one is 18 and the other is 24 (unless you are giving away meaningless awards).

Age is a great caveat to this conversation. As are birth month and things like lockouts.

All that said, we need to add even more caveats and ask why you are making the four month difference in age between the two do so much work here? It makes your analysis sketchy at best and certainly clouds the value of it.

A couple of factual questions for you: what counts as a player's "age year" for you?

Why not simply use "draft year +"?

Generally speaking, although there are certainly exceptions, the physical maturation of young men changes drastically from the age of 18 to 20.

Often, observers of the draft miss the obvious that one player taken may be almost a year older than another and then are amazed when the younger player takes a major step forward.

While "draft year +" makes it easier to compare players, it lacks the age context.

In any event, Yakupov played 70 professional hockey games last season and, while he performed quite well, much of his production came in garbage time and against teams that were already comfortably in the playoffs.

Using your "draft year +" approach even with the caveat that Yakupov is older than Stamkos in the year, the comparative production looks pretty dreadful for Yakupov.

Now, some of that difference may be team effects but it's worth noting that Stamkos posted his numbers on a team that finished 25th overall that season but Stamkos managed to finish 4th in league scoring with 95 points and led his team in scoring.

I don't think there is any danger than Yakupov will do any of those things.

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#27 DSF
November 06 2013, 12:27PM
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David S wrote:

Do you want to give up a 65 point 2LC? Because that's what Gagner is now.

If you want a guy the size of say Boyd Gordon with the same faceoff abilities who can also put up those kind of points points, join the lineup. Every team in the league wants more of those players.

Trade Gagner and you need to get back at least as much in scoring. It won't happen because those guys are either locked down or far more expensive. Not to mention every freaking team in the league knows that's what we need. There's simply no deals out there where we won't get taken to the woodshed or I have to believe MacT would have already pulled the trigger.

65 points?

What?

Gagner has never broken 50 in 6 years in the NHL and sure isn't going to do it this season.

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#28 Keon14
November 06 2013, 08:23AM
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Gagner and Yak have been a disaster. Why would a defensive minded coach such as Eakins put these two together? Does adding Omark to the line make defensive sense? Would it not make more sense to put Gagner on the wing with Gordon at center? Can anyone explain Eakins thinking?

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#29 shanetrain
November 06 2013, 08:26AM
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I give up trying to figure out what the hell these knuckleheads are doing.

Indifference is bliss.

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#31 oilerjed
November 06 2013, 09:01AM
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@JW

Is there any word if LO will play tomorrow night?

Hemsky/Hall-RNH-Eberle Smytty-Gags-Yak Acro-Gordon-Omark Gadzig-Acton-Jones

If hall comes back move Hemsky to 3L and Acro moves to 4C. Acton and Eager can share popcorn.

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#32 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 06 2013, 09:30AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Just a personal observation here. I know it's fashionable to slam smaller players that aren't overtly physical as gritless, gutless wimps.

But I can't help noticing that Sam Gagner has come back early from a broken jaw, and the last few years has done things like fight to avenge a dirty hit.

I can't help noticing that Ales Hemsky throwing himself into a shot block and then making a pass from his knees started the rush that led to Taylor Fedun's goal last night.

I couldn't help noticing Linus Omark gritting through a vicious hit to the head, then multiple leg injuries and keep playing. It was funny talking to the guy after the game, with ice-packs strapped at various places, and listening to him explain how frustrated he was - not that he was taking a beating, but that he was generating chances and they weren't turning into goals.

I get that the Oilers are lopsided in favour of guys that lack size and perhaps cheat a little too frequently for offence. I get that sticking a Wayne Simmonds-type in the lineup rather than an Ales Hemsky-type would add an extra dimension that the team is currently lacking.

But for the most part, I don't get the attacks on the character of these guys. Yes, Gagner and Omark and Hemsky are all on the small side, and all can be frustrating to watch at times. But do we really believe they're terribly lacking in heart?

Remember that embarrassing display by the Flyers vs. the Caps?

You know, where the Flyers got destroyed 7-0?

http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=2013020191-X-h

http://www.extraskater.com/game/2013-11-01-capitals-flyers

Where they managed to lose two key top 6 forwards to injury in some futile display of toughness:

http://www.tsn.ca/nhl/story/?id=435687

Yea… that game.

Now create a Venn Diagram in your head.

In one circle put people that watched that game and identified with the Flyers and consoled themselves with words like "they put up a fight" "they weren't going to get pushed around" etc.

In the other circle put EDM media personalities and fans committed to not simply improving the Oilers but specifically to the faith that "toughness" in and of itself is an improvement.

Want to bet on how large the overlap is?

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#33 NJ
November 06 2013, 10:17AM
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RE Yakupov getting traded.

79 Games. 23 Goals. 23 Assists.

Those are Steven Stamkos rookie year stats.

Until Yak has AT LEAST 82 games under his belt, he gets a pass in EVERY way. He competes more than most on the oilers and the days that he doesn't seem lost, he shows some brilliant flashes. One day he'll learn to use his team mates to set him up and it'll be one time city all night long.

Currently he is ahead of Stamkos statistically (in rookie year, 82 game comparison)... to part with him now may be us parting with a future 40 or even 50+ goal scorer.

I'd rather see Eberle go than see Yak go. We know exactly what Eberle is and brings, and while he is probably a 30 goal scorer on a good team and I've always loved him being Mr. Clutch... Yak hits and shows REAL passion. I believe in a couple years, he'll be that transformed number one guy with more size than he currently has and he'll be every goalie's nightmare.

SO. Unless a #1 d man is coming back (Seth Jones would be a good fit, but I prefer him playing with Shea Weber for the year), Yak should stay and any of Eberle, Hemsky, Gagner and whatever d prospects should be on the trade block.

My .02.

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#34 David S
November 06 2013, 10:39AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Just a personal observation here. I know it's fashionable to slam smaller players that aren't overtly physical as gritless, gutless wimps.

But I can't help noticing that Sam Gagner has come back early from a broken jaw, and the last few years has done things like fight to avenge a dirty hit.

I can't help noticing that Ales Hemsky throwing himself into a shot block and then making a pass from his knees started the rush that led to Taylor Fedun's goal last night.

I couldn't help noticing Linus Omark gritting through a vicious hit to the head, then multiple leg injuries and keep playing. It was funny talking to the guy after the game, with ice-packs strapped at various places, and listening to him explain how frustrated he was - not that he was taking a beating, but that he was generating chances and they weren't turning into goals.

I get that the Oilers are lopsided in favour of guys that lack size and perhaps cheat a little too frequently for offence. I get that sticking a Wayne Simmonds-type in the lineup rather than an Ales Hemsky-type would add an extra dimension that the team is currently lacking.

But for the most part, I don't get the attacks on the character of these guys. Yes, Gagner and Omark and Hemsky are all on the small side, and all can be frustrating to watch at times. But do we really believe they're terribly lacking in heart?

I tried to prop the living h3ll out of this comment but alas only one got through.

Gagner shouldn't really be playing. It was pretty obvious last night that with even a slight bump in his face he's in real pain (which I suspect is why he can't forecheck right now). On top of which he has that stupid full-face shield which is no doubt throwing him off. Tough little bastard if you ask me. I've gained alot of respect for Sam over the last couple of games.

Half the guys here call in sick if they wake up with the sniffles.

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#35 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:29AM
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oilerjed wrote:

Is it not also important to note who each player was playing on a line with?

Sure.

Who did Stamkos play with in his rookie season?

In 2008/09, Stamkos was 8th among TB forwards and still managed to score 23G 23A 46P.

The following season, his "draft +1" year, he was moved to the top line and was second among TB forwards in ice time and his production absolutely exploded.

You need to remember that Barry Melrose was the coach in TB during Stamkos' rookie season and one of the major reason he was turfed was because of the way Stamkos was mishandled.

I would imagine that, if Yakupov was producing at the same level as Stamkos was in his second season, he would be getting top line minutes with Hopkins and Hall.

But he isn't.

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#36 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:45AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

that's draft year +2. (hint: "draft year" = the year you are drafted)

not sure why you would fudge on that. I don't think anyone is trying to run Stamkos down around here.

Hint.

Stamkos was drafted in 2008.

In 2009/10 one year after being drafted he scored 51G 44A 95P.

Unless you are calling rookie seasons Draft Year +1.

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#37 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 06 2013, 11:48AM
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DSF wrote:

Hint.

Stamkos was drafted in 2008.

In 2009/10 one year after being drafted he scored 51G 44A 95P.

Unless you are calling rookie seasons Draft Year +1.

Yes. rookie season = "draft year +1"

07-08 (draft eligible junior season = "draft year")

08-09 (rookie NHL season = "draft year +1")

09-10 (sophomore NHL season = "draft year +2)

etc.

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#38 David S
November 06 2013, 03:18PM
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DSF wrote:

65 points?

What?

Gagner has never broken 50 in 6 years in the NHL and sure isn't going to do it this season.

Sam got 38 points in last year's shortened season with a slow start and patended "Gagner mid-year slump".

That's a 65 point equivalent over a full NHL season.

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#40 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 06 2013, 10:41AM
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DSF wrote:

Stamkos posted those numbers as an 18 year old...Yakupov is 20.

When Stamkos was 19, he scored 51G 44A 95P

When Stamkos was 20, he scored 45G 46A 91P

Also worth noting, Nail Yakupov has the worst plus/minus in the NHL at -13.

This is a completely valid point. Age is a very good indicator of true talent. That's why you don't evaluate "rookies" (for example) when one is 18 and the other is 24 (unless you are giving away meaningless awards).

Age is a great caveat to this conversation. As are birth month and things like lockouts.

All that said, we need to add even more caveats and ask why you are making the four month difference in age between the two do so much work here? It makes your analysis sketchy at best and certainly clouds the value of it.

A couple of factual questions for you: what counts as a player's "age year" for you?

Why not simply use "draft year +"?

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#41 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:38AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:
Generally speaking, although there are certainly exceptions, the physical maturation of young men changes drastically from the age of 18 to 20.

Agreed complete. Said as much. However, your mark of which year of play to count as which age year is in question here.

Often, observers of the draft miss the obvious that one player taken may be almost a year older than another and then are amazed when the younger player takes a major step forward. While "draft year +" makes it easier to compare players, it lacks the age context.

Completely agreed. I mentioned it even.

One of the reasons Barkov (September 2, 1995 (age 18) was given such a big lead on Monahan last year (October 12, 1994 (age 19)… nearly a full year older.

Teams are getting smarter on this score… but still ignore its effects to their peril.

In any event, Yakupov played 70 professional hockey games last season and, while he performed quite well, much of his production came in garbage time and against teams that were already comfortably in the playoffs.

His KHL scoring is an interesting note. It certainly bolsters his Pro performance.

The "garbage time" doesn't apply to most his pro year and is certainly a wash if you are comparing it to Stamkos' 08-09 Lightning.

http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?season=20082009&type=LEA

I have no idea what you think this caveat accomplishes, esp. vs. Stamkos.

Using your "draft year +" approach even with the caveat that Yakupov is older than Stamkos in the year, the comparative production looks pretty dreadful for Yakupov.

You haven't explained how 4 months makes the comparison dreadful. But if we look at draft +2 year, there is no way to cover for Yakupov. He's had a dreadful year and by this point Stamkos was rolling. No argument there.

Only to note that Yakupov's career is still very young.

I also agree. the chance that Yak's sophomore will come anywhere near Stamkos' is pure fantasy.

Of course the lockout makes things a little wonky but there's nothing that can be done about that.

I think the "garbage time" aspect of Yakupov's rookie season IS something that needs a closer look.

He scored 34 NHL points last season with 10G and 15P coming in April.

His shooting percentage in April was 30.3%.

Clearly an unsustainable run for anyone.

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#42 Benny Botts
November 06 2013, 08:33AM
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•Omark - Gagner - Yakupov

That is an absolute D-Zone nightmare! If those 3 are a line they better only be getting offensive starts and facing some soft competition on the other end. Yikes..

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#43 Spydyr
November 06 2013, 08:38AM
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Benny Botts wrote:

•Omark - Gagner - Yakupov

That is an absolute D-Zone nightmare! If those 3 are a line they better only be getting offensive starts and facing some soft competition on the other end. Yikes..

They better score five because the other team is going to score four.

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#44 Ales Hallsky
November 06 2013, 08:42AM
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I like to think to myself, "self, maybe they are bringing him up because at least he tries to win battles in the corners"

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#45 smytty's halfclapper
November 06 2013, 08:55AM
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Can anyone clear this up for me - why don't we have Arcobello playing center and Gagner on the wing? Gagner won 22% of draws last night, and 9% the game before. He's not a great skater, and while Arcobello isn't much better, he does have more of a presence at the faceoff dot.

I cringe every time Gags takes an O-zone draw, especially on the PP... wasted chance!

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#46 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 06 2013, 09:54AM
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Deep Insider wrote:

Wrong!!! Big Oiler-Ranger trade going down in hours - involves 8-10 players in total!

No, no… the entire 23 man roster of both teams is being swapped and then swapped again, but the second time only 22 players are swapped, one remaining (like in musical chairs). they'll do that 22 more times until they are back to where they started except they will have exchanged vendors.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3eNPO8nAE0

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#47 Todd
November 06 2013, 09:59AM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Just a personal observation here. I know it's fashionable to slam smaller players that aren't overtly physical as gritless, gutless wimps.

But I can't help noticing that Sam Gagner has come back early from a broken jaw, and the last few years has done things like fight to avenge a dirty hit.

I can't help noticing that Ales Hemsky throwing himself into a shot block and then making a pass from his knees started the rush that led to Taylor Fedun's goal last night.

I couldn't help noticing Linus Omark gritting through a vicious hit to the head, then multiple leg injuries and keep playing. It was funny talking to the guy after the game, with ice-packs strapped at various places, and listening to him explain how frustrated he was - not that he was taking a beating, but that he was generating chances and they weren't turning into goals.

I get that the Oilers are lopsided in favour of guys that lack size and perhaps cheat a little too frequently for offence. I get that sticking a Wayne Simmonds-type in the lineup rather than an Ales Hemsky-type would add an extra dimension that the team is currently lacking.

But for the most part, I don't get the attacks on the character of these guys. Yes, Gagner and Omark and Hemsky are all on the small side, and all can be frustrating to watch at times. But do we really believe they're terribly lacking in heart?

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TAryFIuRxmQ

Slow clap. Well said.

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#48 DSF
November 06 2013, 11:10AM
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TigerUnderGlass wrote:

...and Dustin Penner has the best +/- in the league. What is your point exactly?

The argument that Yakupov is a bust because he hasn't destroyed the league before completing a whole season is absurd.

Who exactly, said he was a bust?

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#49 2004Z06
November 06 2013, 11:22AM
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David S wrote:

I tried to prop the living h3ll out of this comment but alas only one got through.

Gagner shouldn't really be playing. It was pretty obvious last night that with even a slight bump in his face he's in real pain (which I suspect is why he can't forecheck right now). On top of which he has that stupid full-face shield which is no doubt throwing him off. Tough little bastard if you ask me. I've gained alot of respect for Sam over the last couple of games.

Half the guys here call in sick if they wake up with the sniffles.

I think Sam's eagerness to return had more to do with Arcobello eating his lunch than anything else.

I have a lot of respect for Sam's compete level, but as I have stated many times, his defensive liabilities and lack of faceoff prowess do not make him a centerman. he is better off on the wing, or used in a package deal for a trade.

The guy bleeds copper and blue, but this team does not get better with him at 1C or 2C.

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#50 Romulus' Apotheosis
November 06 2013, 11:29AM
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Generally speaking, although there are certainly exceptions, the physical maturation of young men changes drastically from the age of 18 to 20.

Agreed complete. Said as much. However, your mark of which year of play to count as which age year is in question here.

Often, observers of the draft miss the obvious that one player taken may be almost a year older than another and then are amazed when the younger player takes a major step forward. While "draft year +" makes it easier to compare players, it lacks the age context.

Completely agreed. I mentioned it even.

One of the reasons Barkov (September 2, 1995 (age 18) was given such a big lead on Monahan last year (October 12, 1994 (age 19)… nearly a full year older.

Teams are getting smarter on this score… but still ignore its effects to their peril.

In any event, Yakupov played 70 professional hockey games last season and, while he performed quite well, much of his production came in garbage time and against teams that were already comfortably in the playoffs.

His KHL scoring is an interesting note. It certainly bolsters his Pro performance.

The "garbage time" doesn't apply to most his pro year and is certainly a wash if you are comparing it to Stamkos' 08-09 Lightning.

http://www.nhl.com/ice/standings.htm?season=20082009&type=LEA

I have no idea what you think this caveat accomplishes, esp. vs. Stamkos.

Using your "draft year +" approach even with the caveat that Yakupov is older than Stamkos in the year, the comparative production looks pretty dreadful for Yakupov.

You haven't explained how 4 months makes the comparison dreadful. But if we look at draft +2 year, there is no way to cover for Yakupov. He's had a dreadful year and by this point Stamkos was rolling. No argument there.

Only to note that Yakupov's career is still very young.

I also agree. the chance that Yak's sophomore will come anywhere near Stamkos' is pure fantasy.

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