Now Eventually You Do Plan To Have Power, On Your Powerplay, Right? Hello?

Jonathan Willis
December 19 2013 10:50PM

The game-winning goal in Thursday’s game was scored by the Colorado Avalanche, while the Edmonton Oilers were on the power play. That’s bad. That it’s just the way Oilers power plays tend to go these days is worse.

The Goal!

Stop me if you’ve heard this before: Justin Schultz coughs up the puck at the opposition blue line.

This one isn’t especially complex; that’s the crux of it. The initial pass is inexplicable; Schultz had time and space but decided to force a pass to a covered Taylor Hall rather than hang on to it himself or pass it to the open man on the far boards.

That started a two-on-one. Hall did his level best to get back in the play and gained some ground but wasn’t able to get there in time. The Oilers would have been okay if Schultz had played the pass, like every defenceman defending a two-on-one ever is supposed to, but he didn’t and that left Devan Dubnyk hanging out to dry.

The Trend!

Here’s a statistic: In the last 13 games, the Oilers have surrendered 14 shorthanded chances. They have only managed to generate 11 themselves all season.

Here’s another one: in the last six games, Edmonton’s power play has been out-chanced 8-7.

Superficially, the power play ranks 16th in the NHL in overall effectiveness, with 23 goals on 130 chances (17.7%). However, after eight shorthanded goals are taken into account it slips to 25th overall in goal differential/opportunities. It’s a ludicrous number given the talent the team has at its disposal.

Edmonton plays games on Saturday and Monday, but then has a long-ish break before playing Calgary on Friday (Update: as Jason Gregor reminds me, there's a little-known holiday called "Christmas" in that stretch, which makes it somewhat less than ideal as a time for practicing things). That break might be a good time to completely reimagine the power play.

Recently by Jonathan Willis

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, 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 Retsinnab5
December 19 2013, 11:05PM
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Props if you think we should fire Eakins. Trash if you think we should keep him.

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#2 Rheal1
December 20 2013, 05:57AM
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I am aware that many readers here do not agree with me and trash me but the automatic thumbs downs are a bit immature. Very insightful...

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#3 Fresh Mess
December 19 2013, 11:24PM
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Props if you think props polls are cool.

Trash if you think they are exceedingly dumb and should be banned.

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#4 Oilers4ever
December 19 2013, 11:21PM
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I'll say it like yesterday. Until this team trades gags, yak, and their 1st round pick... heck add hemsky... to get the 1-2 dman they need and a top 6 lucic like player they will continue to suck. They don't frighten anyone and are pushed around far too easy. Until they address that nothing changes.

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#5 DoubleDIon
December 20 2013, 01:36PM
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Arius Mumin wrote:

Eberle and Yakupov would be the best players on the Flames as soon as their plane landed.

Flames don't even have anything worthy to trade for Gagner, yet alone for Hall or RNH.

Give your head a shake and go back to talking about the nothing that is Calgary Flames.

Yakupov wouldn't be in the NHL in the Flames organization. Eberle would be sheltered, kind of like Hudler is.

Giordano is better than any player you guys have not named Taylor Hall.

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#6 Jacques Strap
December 20 2013, 07:12AM
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Props if you think they should fire K-Lowe.

Trash if you kick puppies and want the terrorists to win.

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#7 Rheal1
December 20 2013, 05:36AM
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A few things... I was first to speculate that MacT should move Omark on the TH 200 game post. That he was moved for future consideration - same for LaBarbera - is a bit troubling due to what we could have received in a package trade from Buffalo. Jamie McBain if we threw in Hemsky? Oilers gave another SH goal, the D sucks and Eakins suck for starting DD. Oilers were outshot. Avs beat Oilers fair & square even if it looked easy. Was this another "moral victory"? Sure it was. For some stupid reason perhaps. This team is digging a hole for itself. Regardless of rebuild timeframes, etc or that Hall is not Olympic material, etc etc etc This team sucks. Can't wait to hear "the Edmonton Oilers are"Proud" to select" in the top 5 in June. Saturday we play St-Louis. LOL! Eakins, you moron please put Dubnyk in net again.

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#8 Loweblows
December 19 2013, 11:30PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

NHL teams can't practice on Tuesday and Wednesday due to Christmas. They will work on PP tomorrow most likely. The way things are going they will need more than one day.

The oilers need to practice their power play under the guidance of a coach who is experienced in teaching structure. Eakins has set this team back in the fundamentals. Remember the fruit fly swarm defense? I agree coaching change affects players but Eakinsbhas taught this team squat. Set him adrift now and bring in a coach who understands structure. A ll you Eakins apologists can kiss my a&@!

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#9 DoubleDIon
December 20 2013, 01:13AM
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What I can't figure out is why Nail Yakupov isn't being sheltered more. He is clearly the worst defensive player in the league. Why the heck is he playing against the Duchene line? The O'Reilly goal is a prime example of his disinterested play. I'd play him the 5 minutes the 4th line plays for the other team until he decides to actually stick with his man.

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#10 S cottV
December 20 2013, 09:50AM
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camdog wrote:

He went to the media and his agent the last time he got sheltered minutes.

Yak's has great skill, but he needs to be surrounded by a veteran center to develop his overall game. I know there are a lot of Horcoff haters, and he is a shell of a player he once was, but Yak needs a guy like that right now.

Well - it might help Yak to have a veteran centreman - but a veteran centreman would not want to carry him.

For sure - Yak and Gagner on the same line is like kids playing with grenades. Gagner must be one of the weakest 2C's in his own end in the league. Maybe the weakest because I cant imagine anyone else putting up with it. Yak is just as brutal in his own zone, its just not as glaring with him being a winger.

So - now what do you do? Put him with RNH - No. That would kill Hall and RNH and you better believe they would and have bitched about it. Dont blame them - he is a line killer. Put him with Gordon? No. Doesn't make sense.

I know Yak gets a lot of support on this site, but guys - really? He does not know how to play this game and I doubt that a lot of progress will ever be made on this front.

Yak and Gagner in particular - need to be traded. Preferably together and to our worst enemy - Calgary. N

No - I wouldnt even want to to that to our worst enemy...

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#11 bazmagoo
December 20 2013, 01:32AM
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@DoubleDIon

Ya I'm a huge Yak fan but I'm totally sick of watching his lacklustre, disinterested play on defence. I've been saying trade Eberle for a #1 d-man, but to be honest right now if we could trade Yak for a #1 d-man I'd do it in a heartbeat. Then just resign Hemsky in the #2 right wing spot. Too bad we'd get jack for Yak right now.

It's not going to happen unless MacT pulls a Christmas miracle out of his hat. Maybe the best we can hope for is a Festivus miracle, and Yak actually shows up to play a 200 foot game on Saturday night.

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#12 Zarny
December 20 2013, 11:31AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Relax everyone, there is lot's of time left. Coach Eakins has a plan, and I for one think it will work.

1. Mix the line ups and often ( blender at high speeed) because that always works.

2. Play players outside their natural positions because that always works.

3. Make sure that everyone is fit, demand it, because that always works.

4. Bench players and often,( except you favourites) because that always works.

5. Look angry, and talk in a low voice to the media, because that always works.

6. Match lines like your pee-wee hockey team, because that always works.

If anyone still thinks that because Eakins had a good AHL team, he will be a great NHL coach........stop smoking those drugs.

Time to turf MR. Fitness, the team has tuned him out!

1. Actually most coaches mix lines up all of the time. Torts had the Sedins playing on separate lines earlier in the season in Van. They seem to be doing fine. Datsyuk and Zetterberg have spent half their careers playing with each and half on separate lines.

2. First thing Adam Oates did was move Ovechkin from LW to RW. He struggled at first. He's got 28 G in 32 games this year lol and is close to a G/game over his last 60 games. Because it often works lol.

3. Fitness. Yep pretty much every top player is in phenomenal shape. Worked for Kadri. Pretty much the opinion of the entire league. Go check out Stamkos' workouts.

4. Yep...again common and effective.

5. Irrelevant. Laugh, scream, rant, cry, read Shapespeare or Chaucer. Completely and utterly irrelevant to how a team plays on the ice.

6. What white rabbit should Eakins pull out of his hat?

If Nuge isn't handling a D match-up well his options against the best C on the planet become Gagner, Gordon, Arcobello or Will Acton.

If Ebs is flying the zone let's switch it up because Yakupov and Hemsky are such paragons of reliable, defensive hockey.

Hall or Perron are always the top 2 LW and have been the most consistent players. What's your magic secret for when one or both are out? Moses? Jones? Gadzic?

What top pairing D is he missing? Belov and Larsen? How do you coach brain farts? I like Ference but I don't think Eakins can roll him 25 min a night. Nick Schultz? Is he just being held back and needs 20 min to let his inner Chara out?

The problem isn't coaching. The problem is outside the top 6 F and a handful of players this team is terrible. Below average to AHL caliber players. And the top 6 F all get shutdown by the same game plan and tend to make the same defensive errors.

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#13 40 Double D
December 19 2013, 11:59PM
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Playoffs... let's "delay it for McDavid."

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#14 DoubleDIon
December 20 2013, 11:37AM
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camdog wrote:

He went to the media and his agent the last time he got sheltered minutes.

Yak's has great skill, but he needs to be surrounded by a veteran center to develop his overall game. I know there are a lot of Horcoff haters, and he is a shell of a player he once was, but Yak needs a guy like that right now.

I've never been a Horcoff hater. He was your best player after Hall IMO. You win with Horcoff type players. Yakupov types are losers, you'll never be a winning organization (insert Singletary rant) with that type of mindset. Eberle has some excuse, he's small and slow. He'll never be a good defensive player. Yakupov has decent size and great speed, he should be able to play sound defensive hockey. He should sit in the press box until he apologizes to the organization. Letting a kid who isn't even an NHL level player hold your organization hostage is a joke.

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#15 Oilers4ever
December 20 2013, 06:58AM
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@Oilers4ever

All you bashers can bash all you like but my point is true and yer anal rentitive if you think otherwise. Tell me who our team is bigger than in our division? None of the three cali beasts. Definately not the canucks. We were suppised to be heads and tails above the Flames. Ummm have you checked the standings lately? They are bigger than us too and so is Phoenix. Klowe and any other former oiler in any capacity needs their ass jettisoned off this team. I hope we finish 30th again. Maybe then katz will get his head out of his and release the make up of this team from mgmt to players is 150% wrong.

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#16 The 'Real' Ron Burgundy
December 20 2013, 10:10AM
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@S cottV

Yak and Sammy Snow-pants in some sort of package to the Rangers for Callahan and Girardi. It works every time in my own mind.

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#17 Turnover
December 19 2013, 11:53PM
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Jonathan, maybe the reality is, the "talent" at the coaches disposal, is not as talented as you believe it is !

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#18 Rheal1
December 20 2013, 05:47AM
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Famous quotes:

"And lastly I’ll say, there’s one other guy I believe in hockey today, that is still working in the game, that has won more Stanley Cups than me, so I think I know a little bit about winning if that’s ever a concern." - K Lowe.

"The number one thing we're going to be committed to is competition. If you're going to play for the Edmonton Oilers, you're going to compete. That's how you win games in the NHL and that's how you make your organization better." - D. Eakins.

"In professional sports, winning is the bottom line … This isn't about winning one game or one season. We're going to bring this organization back so that we're in the mix to win every single year." - D. Eakins.

"Now, I'm an impatient guy, and I bring that impatience to this situation. And I think that we're at the stage in terms of the cycle of our hockey club right now, that we have to do some bold things. We have to expose ourselves to some semblance of risk to try and move the team forward in a rapid fashion." - MacT.

"What really, truly matters is what we do tomorrow as an organization to get better. If I can come in here and sell you guys on my capability and credibility to do the job today, it means nothing tomorrow." - MacT.

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#19 **
December 20 2013, 12:57AM
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dougtheslug wrote:

Ludicrous indeed. Why not send Schulz the younger back to OKC for a season or two to learn the rudiments of playing professional hockey. He has been lost at sea for most of his NHL career, and it appears learning on the job is a recipe for ruining a career.

Of course that would expose the silliness of trading Smid for very nearly what they got for Linus Omark.

Makes you wonder who is the most incompetent:the Owner, the POHO, the GM, the Coach, or the players that make the same mistakes game after game after game.

I think Schultz won rookie of the year with only half a season in the minors, so what else is there for him to learn in the minors?. One has to think it's the stupid defensive deployment Eakins is giving the team.

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#20 bazmagoo
December 20 2013, 01:45AM
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Crazy trade proposal for the day - Sam Gagner and Justin Schultz to Florida for Dmitri Kulikov, Shawn Mattias and Jimmy Hayes. We'd definitely be beefier, would add some depth and a legit top 4 d-man.

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#21 Arius Mumin
December 20 2013, 12:10PM
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DoubleDIon wrote:

Ugh, we don't want Gagner, Eberle or Yakupov. You guys can have them. I'd take Hall or RNH in a heartbeat. You can win with those two.

Eberle and Yakupov would be the best players on the Flames as soon as their plane landed.

Flames don't even have anything worthy to trade for Gagner, yet alone for Hall or RNH.

Give your head a shake and go back to talking about the nothing that is Calgary Flames.

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#22 Jason Gregor
December 19 2013, 11:01PM
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NHL teams can't practice on Tuesday and Wednesday due to Christmas. They will work on PP tomorrow most likely. The way things are going they will need more than one day.

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#23 dougtheslug
December 19 2013, 11:07PM
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Ludicrous indeed. Why not send Schulz the younger back to OKC for a season or two to learn the rudiments of playing professional hockey. He has been lost at sea for most of his NHL career, and it appears learning on the job is a recipe for ruining a career.

Of course that would expose the silliness of trading Smid for very nearly what they got for Linus Omark.

Makes you wonder who is the most incompetent:the Owner, the POHO, the GM, the Coach, or the players that make the same mistakes game after game after game.

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#24 Smokey
December 20 2013, 08:02AM
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Heads should roll. How can a President and GM watch the debacle of a powerplay with that much talent suck so mightily.

The Oilers dzone coverage and inability to defend is laughable. A top pairing of Smid Petry would look lovely right now. Not sure how Lowe and MacT could think a plethera of soft 180 pound defenders with no apparantly no defensive accumen could handle this load. Just pathetic.

They dumped Smid for ECHL goalie and a tweener so they could sign a goalie who they don't play. If your going to dump your only decent NHL defender then roll your goalie till he drops. Total headshaker.

Good on Hall and Nuge to play for pride. The only highlights last night.

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#25 Bryzarro World
December 20 2013, 08:35AM
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Coach is a joke. We had the same sad line up, even worse in some cases the last couple years but there were still areas the team shined. The Oil were losing but they had a great power play and not bad penalty kills.

Wtf do we have now? An even bigger turd pile. THANKS COACH

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#26 PutzStew
December 20 2013, 09:09AM
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Hey Jonathan.

Sorry I'm not a real big fan of yours. I would like to commend you on your ability to call a Spade, a Spade, especially in the resent months, as fans and former fans watch this team crash and burn.

If more of the Media, especially the main stream media, did this instead of constantly trying to put a positive spin on things, then maybe there would be some changes being made.

Cudos

PS. I you some home magically ended up being the owner of the Oilers, what changes would you make, both on ice and off ice. Also please describe why and why not.

Thanx Jonathan

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#27 Zarny
December 20 2013, 10:42AM
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Schultz has a brain fart and we get comments about Lowe and Eakins. Good grief.

That's not coaching. That's a dumb play. That's sh*t I see in my men's league. That's all on J. Schultz. If we're going to talk about accountability and such.

Last night was par for the course. A bunch of kids prone to making mistakes on the ice together. Coverage of the Oilers looks a bit like child abuse sometimes.

I thought it was fitting Max Talbot was the difference maker. The Oilers could use a few boring old vets like him.

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#28 Oasis
December 20 2013, 01:18PM
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Smokey wrote:

I'm preferencing my comment I like both players. A small undersized, defensively irresponsible, below average skater like Omark is not better then anyone in our top 6. Letting him walk for nothing is what he was worth. What would you expect for him, Weber?

Hemsky should be traded to a veteran team if this team is going to play Gagner. You got remove the redundant small skilled player. Hemsky is a way better player, Gagner should be traded in all respect.

I don't expect anything for Omark. My point is Hemsky was only going to be here for this year and at worst next year as well. I would have traded Hemsky and when we could have got something for him. Then I would have taken the 5 million in salary that Hemsky makes and put it towards a Free Agent defenseman that we need.

Omark could have filled in for one year for Hemsky and then you could cut him loose if he wasn't working out.

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#29 Toro
December 19 2013, 11:17PM
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I like Ekblad

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#30 jim
December 20 2013, 01:48AM
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bazmagoo wrote:

Crazy trade proposal for the day - Sam Gagner and Justin Schultz to Florida for Dmitri Kulikov, Shawn Mattias and Jimmy Hayes. We'd definitely be beefier, would add some depth and a legit top 4 d-man.

crazier trade.........sam gagner and j schultz for horcoff

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#31 Loweblows
December 20 2013, 09:02AM
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Eakins said the power play isn't getting it done- correction required-Eakins coaching isn't getting it done! The power play last year was effective and under his stewardship it has regressed. Fire Eakins now! Andvfire KLown while your at it.

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#32 DoubleDIon
December 20 2013, 11:38AM
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S cottV wrote:

Well - it might help Yak to have a veteran centreman - but a veteran centreman would not want to carry him.

For sure - Yak and Gagner on the same line is like kids playing with grenades. Gagner must be one of the weakest 2C's in his own end in the league. Maybe the weakest because I cant imagine anyone else putting up with it. Yak is just as brutal in his own zone, its just not as glaring with him being a winger.

So - now what do you do? Put him with RNH - No. That would kill Hall and RNH and you better believe they would and have bitched about it. Dont blame them - he is a line killer. Put him with Gordon? No. Doesn't make sense.

I know Yak gets a lot of support on this site, but guys - really? He does not know how to play this game and I doubt that a lot of progress will ever be made on this front.

Yak and Gagner in particular - need to be traded. Preferably together and to our worst enemy - Calgary. N

No - I wouldnt even want to to that to our worst enemy...

Ugh, we don't want Gagner, Eberle or Yakupov. You guys can have them. I'd take Hall or RNH in a heartbeat. You can win with those two.

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#33 T&A4Flames
December 20 2013, 11:45AM
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** wrote:

Dishonor for Connor

Wow. You guys are already talking about tanking next season. Do you ever plan on being relevant again?

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#34 Joe Mamma
December 20 2013, 11:52AM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

Wow. You guys are already talking about tanking next season. Do you ever plan on being relevant again?

Kindly step in front of a moving semi.

Don't you losers in calgary have anything better to do in your world class city than sit and troll oiler boards? Get a life.

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#35 DoubleDIon
December 20 2013, 01:41PM
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T&A4Flames wrote:

Wow. You guys are already talking about tanking next season. Do you ever plan on being relevant again?

I know, it's sad. This is why we shouldn't tank. It's like gonorrhea, the disease is hard to get rid of. Draft well, develop and hold players accountable. Bartschi is light years better defensively than Yakupov or Eberle and is held accountable in Calgary. I can't believe Yakupov is still playing in the top 6. At worst he should be sheltered as much as possible, not trotted out there to help a team lose every night.

The only possible explanation is that the Oilers are trying to accumulate even more loser picks, where they'll promptly draft another guy who plays one dimensional hockey. I bet Hall leaves ASAP.

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#36 DoubleDIon
December 21 2013, 03:05AM
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nrXic wrote:

There is more talent in Yakupov's left hand than there is in the entire Flames organization, let's not kid ourselves here.

He is absolutely horrid in his defensive play, but that is something that is learned. His shot on the other hand, is a skill and a G-d given talent that no Flames player will ever possess.

His defensive liability means little if he remains on the half-wall on the PP. Remember the PP? Y'know, the topic Mr. Willis is talking about?

Last year he scored 18% of the Oilers' PP goals.

This year, he has scored 17%. The only player to score more is Perron, at 26%. Hall trails Yak at 13%.

What makes that stat remarkable, is that Yak plays on the second PP unit, which affords him 66% of the opportunity these other guys get. There's another aspect to be considered which I'll mention later.

Hall and Perron average 3:30 min on the PP each game. Yak averages 2:34.

What concerns me more than those minutes, is how those minutes are spent. Rather than getting a chance to start in the offensive zone, where a faceoff win can lead to an immediate PP setup, which can lead to one-time opportunities...the 2nd line comes in usually on a on-the-fly change, or a faceoff (that isn't guaranteed to be in the opponent's zone). So as I said earlier, this has to be factored into Yak's performance. Offensive zone faceoffs matter when it comes to setting up a player who specializes in having a cannon shot.

There are more issues, no doubt, some of which were put rather well in the first page of comments. But what I see here is an issue with using the right knife in our Swiss Army Knife, for the job. This also includes where you would put a guy like Yak. You don't move him to the blue line, as we saw a couple times. He belongs on the half wall.

One aspect of Yak that coaching has under-estimated are his passing skills. His passes are hard (perhaps too hard in some cases) and accurate. No opponent stick in the lane is able to stop those passes. I can appreciate wanting a player maker like Nuge on that wall, he'd be far more suited to setting up Yak.

Yakupov has one even strength goal this year. He's tied with Mike Smith, a goaltender and Brian McGratton. That shot must really be working for him. More pucks have gone in off of Bertuzzi's ass then Yakupov's stick. Honestly, he wouldn't crack our roster. Not even close. He shouldn't be cracking yours either. On the PP subject, he should be getting much less time than Hall or Perron. He's not even in the same league as those two.

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#37 T&A4Flames
December 19 2013, 11:12PM
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MacT's bold move...tank, just like thel last guy, and draft Ekblad to fix the D.

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#38 **
December 20 2013, 12:59AM
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40 Double D wrote:

Playoffs... let's "delay it for McDavid."

Dishonor for Connor

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#39 Walter Sobchak
December 20 2013, 01:56AM
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The Oilers are in deep sh!p most night & it doesn't help that the PP is bloody horrible!

I'd go back to 5 forward PP.

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#40 hall2010
December 20 2013, 02:15AM
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bazmagoo wrote:

Ya I'm a huge Yak fan but I'm totally sick of watching his lacklustre, disinterested play on defence. I've been saying trade Eberle for a #1 d-man, but to be honest right now if we could trade Yak for a #1 d-man I'd do it in a heartbeat. Then just resign Hemsky in the #2 right wing spot. Too bad we'd get jack for Yak right now.

It's not going to happen unless MacT pulls a Christmas miracle out of his hat. Maybe the best we can hope for is a Festivus miracle, and Yak actually shows up to play a 200 foot game on Saturday night.

i think yak's disinterested in playing for eakins rather than defense.

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#41 Oilers4ever
December 20 2013, 06:59AM
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And I hate typing on smart phones!!

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#42 Brian
December 20 2013, 07:45AM
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I suspect that KLowe will be avoiding open mics for a while yet . Too bad . I quite enjoy his Rob Ford-like sound bites.

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#43 HardBoiledOil
December 20 2013, 09:13AM
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that 3rd goal was soft by Dubnyk. I know he was hung to dry by his defence, but make a key save every now and then would you? and as was mentioned above by Smokey, MacT should be very happy now....he has a bunch of soft, 180 pound d-men on this team, but hey, they can move the puck, right? unfortunately, they can't defend. management is on the hot seat now to find a top d-man in the off season, no more of this Grebs and Larsen crap! I think it was Brownlee or someone who said if the Oilers can't find a #1 d-man in the off season, then management has failed. to be fair, not everyone has one to trade away, and there are 28 other teams who want the same guy. but they really have to get this team as a whole to start playing better "D" and start buying into Eakin's system or they just won't be winning any season soon. my caffeine filled rant for this morn.

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#44 Dan the Man
December 20 2013, 09:18AM
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As awful as Schultz has been this year at times (and there have been many times) he just played in his 77th NHL game. That's not even a full season yet.

Craig Simpson was defending him on Twitter last night and had this to say: "Point being, Schultz better first year than Karlsson, Erik's 2nd was 45pts -30 on non playoff team and knives were out on him. Nothing worse than judging a talented young D, trying to be an impact player in 2nd year, on a bad team that can't defend...Perspective here. Paul Coffey had 32pts in 74gp as rookie, Schultz had 27 in 48gp on a bad team in a tight defensive NHL. The point was, nobody would have pegged Karlsson as a future Norris winner at ANY point in his first 2 years…."

Horrible play last night but you really need to be patient with young defensemen.

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#45 Zarny
December 20 2013, 01:42PM
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Rama Lama wrote:

I always wonder about well coached teams.......it seems no matter who is out they find a way to win.

Why, you ask Zarny, well because they have a system of play that all players have bought into and they make it work.

It's called good coaching. We hired a rookie GM who made a rookie mistake and hired a rookie coach. The rookie coach though he was smarter than God......and still does.

Since we cant fire the President, GM, Asst. GM, the only one left is the coach.

We should have hired Brent Sutter in the first place.........he would have never made the STUPID mistakes that Eakins continues to make. Let's stop blaming the players as NOT being good enough. Every time we say that the player leaves only to shine on some other team.

That's nonsense. Torts, Hitchcock, Ruff, Maurice...tons of good coaches have had winning and losing seasons. They don't always find a way to win. That's a pure fallacy. That's why they get fired.

I like Sutter. Would't have had a problem with him at all. NJ struggled his first 20 games. Same with Oates in Wsh last year.

You say rookie like it's an actual point. Sutter was rookie when he was hired too. Bylsma was a rookie in Pit. Oates was a rookie in Wsh. Cooper is a rookie in TB.

Being a rookie has nothing to do with it.

It doesn't matter who the coach is there is no top pairing D. Literally. Any combination will fail. Not one D on this team is good enough to play against top F 25 min a night let alone 2.

The top 6 F all play the same and have the same flaws. It doesn't matter what combination you throw out there. And the spare parts on the 3rd and 4th line are useless aside from Gordon.

You take 3 or 4 names off that roster and it's an AHL team. That's the problem.

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#46 LoweBlow
December 20 2013, 12:44AM
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Glad I missed this game. I'm seeing that I'm happier when I don't watch the Oilers.

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#47 bob
December 20 2013, 01:46AM
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this 'team' blows........this organization blows........sport announcers on radio and tv blow........no entertainment value at all........

ive heard from buddies with kids......the kids think cheering for oilers youre not cool.....they are cheering for other teams and players............and starting to watch other sports

oilers are on the verge of losing the younger generation.......not good for business

what a shame

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#48 dougtheslug
December 20 2013, 06:34AM
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** wrote:

I think Schultz won rookie of the year with only half a season in the minors, so what else is there for him to learn in the minors?. One has to think it's the stupid defensive deployment Eakins is giving the team.

Remember Schultz played his brief minor league career on a unit with Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and RNH. It was all offence, all the time and seriously skewed his offensive numbers, and I think distorted the perception of his abilities, as well as leaving his clear defensive liabilities unexposed until he arrived at the NHL.

It is obvious he has lots to learn on his own side of center ice. Put him down in OKC with their current roster, and I bet you he wouldn't put up anywhere near the offensive numbers he put up last year.

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#49 Ed in PV
December 20 2013, 06:58AM
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Rheal1 wrote:

Famous quotes:

"And lastly I’ll say, there’s one other guy I believe in hockey today, that is still working in the game, that has won more Stanley Cups than me, so I think I know a little bit about winning if that’s ever a concern." - K Lowe.

"The number one thing we're going to be committed to is competition. If you're going to play for the Edmonton Oilers, you're going to compete. That's how you win games in the NHL and that's how you make your organization better." - D. Eakins.

"In professional sports, winning is the bottom line … This isn't about winning one game or one season. We're going to bring this organization back so that we're in the mix to win every single year." - D. Eakins.

"Now, I'm an impatient guy, and I bring that impatience to this situation. And I think that we're at the stage in terms of the cycle of our hockey club right now, that we have to do some bold things. We have to expose ourselves to some semblance of risk to try and move the team forward in a rapid fashion." - MacT.

"What really, truly matters is what we do tomorrow as an organization to get better. If I can come in here and sell you guys on my capability and credibility to do the job today, it means nothing tomorrow." - MacT.

That pretty much sums up the Oil's management team. Plenty of good quotes but nothing is being delivered.

Gregor, Brownlee and anyone else in the Edmonton sports media I ask for a Xmas gift from you guys. The next time KL has a media availability (and I know it is not all that often) please someone ask him directly is he is accountable for the embarrassment the Oil have become, if not him then who. Will the responsible people be held accountable (i.e. be shown the door due to not doing their jobs).

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#50 gcw_rocks
December 20 2013, 07:24AM
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Ed in PV wrote:

That pretty much sums up the Oil's management team. Plenty of good quotes but nothing is being delivered.

Gregor, Brownlee and anyone else in the Edmonton sports media I ask for a Xmas gift from you guys. The next time KL has a media availability (and I know it is not all that often) please someone ask him directly is he is accountable for the embarrassment the Oil have become, if not him then who. Will the responsible people be held accountable (i.e. be shown the door due to not doing their jobs).

Those would be the best questions ever asked. But I doubt anyone in the media has the balls to ask them. Lowe is vindictive and they would probably risk losing "access".

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