GDB: 38.0: OILERS WANTED THIS...

Jason Gregor
December 23 2013 12:23PM

 

The Oilers asked for this.

During the past few seasons members of the Oilers management have made references to wanting to build their team in the same vain as Chicago and Pittsburgh. I have no idea if they will ever have the same success as those two franchises, but right now they are emulating the struggles and lack of success that both those franchises endured before becoming two of the best teams in the NHL.

I've cautioned people who only looked at the rebuilds of Chicago and Pittsburgh as blueprints for the Oilers, because the harsh reality is that for every Chicago there are two franchises like Columbus or Atlanta/Winnipeg, and for every Pittsburgh there is a Florida and the New York Islanders.

It was great for the Oilers to aspire to be like the Blackhawks and Penguins, but that was always the "best case scenario."

Many readers won't want to read this, but the truth remains this is only year four of the Oilers rebuild. The previous four seasons were not part of the rebuild. They were four seasons of bad management. That doesn't excuse the Oilers, specifically Kevin Lowe who has been here for all eight years, but if you are someone who was in favour of the rebuild in 2010 then you have to accept the harsh reality of the current timeline.

It is rare for teams to rebuild in a short period of time. The problem is i'm not sure the Oilers truly understood how hard the journey would be. Did they expect this much losing? If so, why did they change coaches every year? It is fair to question if they truly had a plan, and it is more than fair to question whether they have the fortitude or smarts to follow it through and make the correct decisions to become a winner.

When the Oilers management suggested they wanted to follow in the footsteps of the Hawks and Penguins, I wonder if they knew exactly what that entailed? Did they know that the Blackhawks made the playoffs once in ten seasons between 1998 and 2008?

The Hawks didn't have a few years of losing; they had a decade of it.

1998: 9th worst record. Drafted 8th (Mark Bell) after a deal with Toronto
1999: 7th worst record. Won lottery, moved up to 4th spot, then traded that pick for Bryan McCabe and the 11th pick in 2000. McCabe played one season in Chicago before being dealt to Toronto for Alex Karpotvsev and a pick.
2000: 8th worst record. Picked 10th, due to Minnesota and Columbus entering league, and selected Mikhail Yakubov 10th and used the 11th pick on Pavel Vorobiev. 
2001: 9th worst record and they selected Tuomo Ruutu 9th.
2002: Made the playoffs. Finished 5th in the west, four points ahead of 9th. Their top six scoring forward were there in 2001 and Jocelyn Thibault was the starter both years, but they added Phil Housley and Jon Klemm on the blueline. They were #2 and #3 in TOI behind Boris Mironov. They made a very smart pick in the 2nd round selecting Duncan Keith 45th overall.
2003: 14th worst record. They selected Brent Seabrook. They took Corey Crawford in the 2nd round and Dustin Byfuglien in the 9th.
2004: 2nd worst record. Washington won the lottery so the Hawks dropped to 3rd and picked Cam Barker after missing out on Ovechkin and Malkin. The Hawks had 17 draft picks that year and took Dave Bolland 32nd, Bryan Bickell 41st and Troy Brouwer 214th. 
2005: No season, but they picked 7th after the lottery and took Jack Skille. They chose Niklas Hjalmarsson 108th overall.
2006: 3rd worst record. They happily took Jonathan Toews at #3.
2007: 5th worst record. They won the lottery and took Patrick Kane first overall. (Sidenote, the Oilers never would have gotten Kane. Had they lost their final game of the season to the Flames they would have finished with the 4th worst record not the fifth.)
2008: 11th worst record. Took Kyle Beach with the 11th pick.

During the first half of that decade of losing none of the Hawks top picks made an impact in Chicago, however, between 2002-2007 the foundation of their team was built through the draft. Kane, Toews, Seabrook, Keith, Hjalmarsson, Crawford, Bickell, Bolland, Brouwer and Byfuglien were all key players in one or both of their Stanley Cup victories.

However, it wasn't like they planned to go from being a playoff team in 2002, to missing out by one point in 2003 to being a bottom three team in 2004, 2006 and 2007. You can make a strong argument that their most important decision came from a stroke of luck; winning the draft lottery.

Toews is the heart and soul of that team, but Kane is his deadly sidekick, and I don't see them winning the Cup without Kane. You need some luck and good fortune along the way to win a Cup, but to become a consistent contender you need to build the majority of the key pieces via the draft.

The Oilers have an excellent chance of mirroring the Hawks decade of losing, but they will be hard pressed to go from being a bottom feeder to a Cup contender like the Hawks, because no two paths to Cup success are the same.

The Oilers don't have a Keith or Seabrook right now. You can argue that Petry could be their Hjalmarsson and Eberle was an outstanding pick at #22, but other than a long stretch of losing, I've never made the direct comparison between the two organizations.

The Hawks stunk for a decade, and if Bill Wirtz hadn't passed away in the fall of 2007, I wonder if the Hawks would have had the same success. Wirtz was a very generous man who donated millions of dollars to the Boys and Girls Clubs and other charities, but he was incredibly frugal when it came to the Blackhawks. For years he wouldn't show Blackhawks' home games on television. He alienated his fans to the point that when the Blackhawks held a moment of silence in his honour prior to a game in October of 2007 some fans booed.

The Hawks success was a combination of good drafting, some lottery luck and a change in leadership.

Will the Oilers do the same?

WHAT ABOUT PITTSBURGH?

Most people know that the Penguins had five consecutive top-five picks between 2002-2006, but prior to those five lean years the Penguins were a great organization.

The Penguins made the playoffs for 11 consecutive seasons before missing them in 2002. Jaromir Jagr entered the NHL in 1990/1991 and that is when the Penguins 11-year streak began. They also had some guy named Mario Lemieux who was also pretty good.

Jagr came in when their run started, and when he was traded on July 11th, 2001that marked the beginning of their five years in suckville.

The Penguins made it to the conference finals in 2001, losing 4-1 to New Jersey, but Jagr was traded that summer and Lemieux only played 26 games in 2002.

2002: 5th worst record. They drafted Ryan Whitney. They also selected Max Talbot 234th overall.
2003: 2nd worst record. Florida won the lottery and had the first pick. The Penguins had the 3rd choicel, and they moved that pick along with the 55th pick (Stefan Meyer) and Mikael Samuelsson to Florida for the 1st and 73rd pick (Daniel Carcillo).The Penguins took Marc-Andre Fleury first overall.
2004: Worst record in the NHL. Washington won the lottery and picked first, (Ovechkin) and the Penguins grabbed Evgeni Malkin at #2. They took Alex Goligoski 61st and Tyler Kennedy 99th.
2005: No season. The history of the Penguins changed due to luck. They won the lottery and had the pleasure of selecting Sidney Crosby. They chose Kris Letang 62nd that year as well.
2006: 2nd worst record. They selected Jordan Staal 2nd overall.

There is no Crosby in Edmonton, and on any other team for that matter, so it is very difficult for the Oilers to follow the Penguins' path to success. The Penguins drafted three centres, one goalie and a D-man who they used in a trade to acquire Chris Kunitz.

The Penguins went from being very good to terrible in the span of 10 months.

Their five-year drought was painful, but they got Crosby and Malkin; two of the top-five players in the NHL. It is impossible to match that blueprint. The Penguins also got an elite D-man in the 3rd round, similar to the Blackhawks landing Keith.

The Oilers are on pace to grab their 5th consecutive pick in the top-seven, and while that will put them on par with the draft positioning of the Penguins, it doesn't mean their five picks will be as impactful as the Penguins. Just like the Hawks, the Penguins caught a huge break by winning the lottery and selecting a dynamic and dominant player.

The Oilers have also won the lottery, but Nail Yakupov hasn't come close to matching the early success of Kane or Crosby. He likely will produce more in the future, but I don't ever see him being in the same category as those two players.

The one similarity that I do see unfolding with the Oilers, that we also saw in Pittsburgh and Chicago, will be trading away one of their top-five picks.

The Hawks moved Cam Barker for Kim Johnsson and Nick Leddy, while the Pens moved Whitney for Kunitz and after winning a Cup, they had to move (pending UFA) Staal for Brandon Sutter and Derrick Pouliot.

The Oilers are similar to the Penguins in their draft position, and are on the verge of being on par with the Blackhawks when it comes to a decade of losing. Now, it is up to MacTavish to see if he can build this team into a contender. They still have a lot of work to do.

WHAT DOES IT MEAN?

  • It is great to have a goal to strive for, but the I've always felt it was a bit of pipedream to believe you could emulate the road to success of the Penguins or Blackhawks. The fact is there is no guarantee of success in the NHL.
     
  • Having consecutive top-five picks should give you a good base, but only if you use the picks properly. Either you pick the best combination of players, or you pick the ones that you will be able to move for assets in the future. The Oilers aren't in a position to trade one of those picks today, but they will need to in the future.
     
  • The other difference between the Oilers and the Hawks and Penguins thus far is drafting depth outside of a top-ten pick. The Blackhawks built the depth of their team through the draft, and many of them were a bit more mature by the time Kane and Toews burst on the scene.
     
  • The Penguins surrounded their young players with productive and experienced players. In 2008 when they lost in the Cup final, they added Hal Gill, Pascal Dupuis and Marian Hossa. The next year when they won the Cup they acquired Kunitz, Bill Guerin and Craig Adams. The Oilers will need to make smart moves and acquire some veterans to support their young stars.
     
  • The Penguins Cup winning blueline consisted of draft picks, Letang, Rod Scuderi (134th pick, 1998) and Brooks Orpik (18th, 2000), acquired Gill and two free agent signings in Sergie Gonchar (2005) and Mark Eaton (2006).
     
  • The Hawks also had three drafted D-men on their blueline in Keith, Seabrook and Hjalmarsson.
     
  • The only drafted D-man the Oilers curently have on the roster is Petry. We expect Oscar Klefbom, Darnell Nurse and possibly Martin Marincin to play in the future, but if the Oilers are going to succeed then one of those three will need to be an impact player within three seasons. That is a lot to ask of a young D-man.
     
  • If I had to pick, I'd say the Oilers have a better chance of following the Penguins path than the Blackhawks, strictly because the Hawks D-men were more mature than their forwards when they won. The Penguins went out and signed a veteran top-pairing D-man in Gonchar, which is a more realistic option for the Oilers. They either trade for one this summer or try and sign one via free agency this summer.
     
  • Trading or signing an elite D-man is going to be extremely difficult. If they don't go that route, I don't see how this team can take the steps needed to becoming a competitive team.
     
  • I understand the frustration amongst Oilers fans. You are sick of watching a losing product, and you should be. However, the Oilers haven't been rebuilding for eight years. From 2007-2010 they tried being competitive, but they failed. They made some questionable trades and free agent signings, and the only reason they actually went into a rebuild was due to numerous injuries to key players during the 2009/2010 season. They didn't plan to rebuild, it just unfolded that way.
     
  • That doesn't excuse Kevin Lowe, far from it, but the biggest mistake the Oilers could make today is to try and speed up the rebuild. If they need to fire someone within the organization to appease their fans, then they have to do it, but if they try to deviate from their original plan, or try and speed up the process, then there is a very good chance they will end up driving this team into an even longer cycle of losing. They have to see the process through, and accept that there might be some empty seats in the process. If they try to change the plan now, they likely will screw it up even worse.
     
  • Eakins was pretty fired up about the fan who threw his jersey on the ice. "That's a bunch of bull crap. Whoever through that jersey on the ice is a quitter and they're out. I never want our players to quit," said Eakins. Every sports team values the jersey, it is very symbolic and I see why the coach didn't like it. He was okay with fans booing, said his team deserved it, but the jersey was offside. I'm guessing this will be a hot topic amongst Oiler fans. Some I spoke to loved it, while others felt it was disrespectful to the jersey.
     
  • My personal opinion on it is this. Eakins is in a no win situation. They didn't need another distraction, although I'm guessing that was his plan. Have fans hate him, not the team.

    Also...If the fan who threw it is officially done with the Oilers, then he went out with a bang. If he threw it on the ice, but will be back watching them tonight then it was just a moment of dumb frustration and rather bushleague. You can be upset at the Oilers, yell at them because they haven't improved, demand that Lowe be fired. That is fair game. Tossing a jersey, or anything else on the ice, other than a hat after a hat trick, should not be applauded.

    I do believe many fans are fed up and likely won't go to any games or watch any until the Oilers improve, and if you are strong enough to stay away I tip my hat to you. I'm a diehard Dolphins fan, and my team has stunk for the most part of the past two decades, yet everytime I think I'm done with them they win a few games and I get sucked back in. It is very hard to stop cheering for a team, and if you are able to do it then you are stronger than me. Good on ya.

 LINEUP

It shouldn't matter who they play with, the entire team's focus should be about working hard and competing. If they don't instill that into their foundation this team will never improve. Eakins juggled his lines and came up with these new combos at practice yesterday.

Hall-RNH-Perron
Joensuu-Gagner-Eberle
Smyth-Gordon-Hemsky
Gazdic-Lander-Yakupov

Ference-J Schultz
Belov-Petry
N Schultz-Potter

Bryzgalov

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers worst game of the year was the 5-0 loss to Detroit. They rebounded three days later and beat Florida on the road. Tonight is different. They are at home and their fans are frothing at the mouth in frustration. If they have any pride they will put forth a good effort. If they don't, the fans won't hold back their displeasure. The Oilers avoid a raucous round of boos with a 4-3 win.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers announce a sell out, but there will be some empty seats. Whether they are paid for or not, the message should be clear to the Oilers; patience is wearing thin amongst Oiler fans.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The powerplay doesn't give up a good scoring chance.
 

DAY 16: MONTH OF GIVING...

Today is our final day, so if you haven't finished your Christmas shopping you could do it during the show and help out Santas Anonymous and The Christmas Bureau at the same time.

Package #1: Update your wardrobe.

 

  • A $1,000 shopping spree at Derk's Mens Wear
  • One Derk's Black Label Suit.
  • $300 in tailoring to help with your new wardrobe.
  • A wardrobe consultation. Derks will come to your house, go through your closet and asses what you need or what pieces need to go.

Package #2: Tee It Up.

  • 10 rounds of golf at the Ranch Golf and Country Club (hole 14 above)  with a power cart with each round and use of driving range before every round.

 Package #3: For your special lady.

  • A pair of white gold diamond earrings. Beautiful floral type deign with micro pavee set diamonds on lever backs, they are a stunning dangling style with .30 carats of diamonds. Courtesy of Michael Anthony Jewellers. 

Package #4:

  • Two pairs of seats to watch the Flyers/Oilers on Saturday.
    Row 23 seats 1,2 and seats 5.6  with club access courtesy of Nation reader VK63!

You can bid between 2-6 p.m today by calling 780.444.1260 or 1.800.243.1945.

Thanks in advance...

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#201 michael
December 23 2013, 02:32PM
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These last 6 games were exactly what I expected. Psalm 23 folks is my mantra.Talk about the Valley of the Shadow of Death. Cripes we knew it was coming.Yet when these 6 games came and went it left many of us still wondering if our faith in the players and management was/is warranted?

The good news is that the light of a new day can bring new hope to all of us Oiler fans.

The Oilers have a chance to recover some of their confidence with games against the Jets,the Flames and the Flyers. We hope.

I look at the last 6 games as a test of our faith in all things Oilers. Like many of you I get crazy when we see how easily St Louis ran our show. 6-0 is in the books.

Now is the time to renew our faith in the team. Not leave them wandering alone in the wilderness.

Those of you who go to the game tonight show your faith and your support for this team.They need cheers not jeers. Their confidence is shaken so a show of support is needed.

Merry Christmas

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#202 Constance
December 23 2013, 02:39PM
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@Dallylamma

Entirely possible, though one would imagine that a "winner" like Kevin wouldn't require deals from Gregor to score stylish Menswear, pretty much anything he puts on would attain the level of high style due to clothings association with a true "winner" like Kevin.

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#203 A-Mc
December 23 2013, 03:52PM
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OilCanFan wrote:

Does anyone remember the movie The Toy starring Richard Pryor? A billionaire buys him - similar to another certain billionaire buying living hockey cards. He appears to not care a lick about what is going on with the team on the ice, only the one from the 80's. I think that most people can agree that as long as he is making money, he won't change a thing. The issue is that most of the seats are seasons ticket holders and most of those are corporate owned and they also don't really care about what goes on with the team. I'm a Tier 1 fan and would have gotten rid of my tickets had my wife not convinced me to hold on to them for our kids on the hope that one day the team will deserve the respect they seem to think we fans (Tier 2 and 3 too) owe them.

can i have ur tix?

Tier 3 fan here. can't afford to go to games.

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#204 Toro
December 23 2013, 05:24PM
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You buy me 6 rexall beers and I'll take package 4 off your hands.

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#205 @Oilanderp
December 23 2013, 07:32PM
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Wintoon wrote:

I cannot believe the arrogance of some of the posters. The Oilers are a bad hockey team right now but they are moving in the right direction overall. Have they improved as much and as fast as we all hoped? No they haven't. Unfortunately everyone seems to think building a winner is easy. It is not. Patience is required and even then a perennial powerhouse is not guaranteed. Almost every NHL team has smart men working for them but very few teams actually achieve any form of greatness. I am confident that if MacT has an opportunity to make a bold move that helps the team he will. Until then, show some class, be humble and support the team. Listening to the haters is bad enough. Having to listen to Oiler fans whine is disgusting.

Thanks bud. This bears repeating. It's bad enough watching my team going through these hard times but coming on here and reading all the incessant whining and complaining makes it worse.

Oops, before I blow my cover...

FIRE SOMEBODY! TRADE YAKUPOV FOR 4th LINE PLUGS! STATS R DUM! MAC T SUX: GAVE AWAY OMARK NOW WE CANT GET WEBER! FIRE HOWSON'S MOM!

Whew, that threw most of them off... oh crap there's a straggler!

*breathes through mouth*

Whew, I've avoided the group of dissatisfied Oilerfan zombies.... for now.

Anyway props man.

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#206 Bucknuck
December 23 2013, 07:44PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

Well, I hope they give us a Christmas present and win tonight. That's what I want for Christmas.

Just wondering who would trash this comment, much less six people. So you guys don't want them to win? You are so bitter about the team that someone that says they want a win for Christmas and you TRASH it?

I don't get it.

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#207 Alsker
December 23 2013, 07:58PM
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Nice goal by Ebs from Hemmer but is Bryz taking pointers from DD?

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#208 vetinari
December 23 2013, 08:05PM
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Alsker wrote:

Nice goal by Ebs from Hemmer but is Bryz taking pointers from DD?

Yeah, but the Jets goal started by a turnover in the neutral zone and then a guy or two missing their reads leaving a clear lane to shoot at Breezer.

When they pan the camera around the rink, it looks "less sold out" then usual. And I notice a lot less people wearing their jerseys.

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#209 BingBong
December 23 2013, 08:26PM
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Stinker given up by Bryz, but good effort from everybody so far. Hemmer really looks great.

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#210 Tuningout
December 23 2013, 08:37PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

Just wondering who would trash this comment, much less six people. So you guys don't want them to win? You are so bitter about the team that someone that says they want a win for Christmas and you TRASH it?

I don't get it.

Not that I share this point of view. But I think there are lots of fans that are cheering for the Oilers to lose this game. Losing may create more negative emotion, a bit more negative emotion may cause a further uprising of fans, and an uprising may cause change in the organization. People may be worried that one win today may calm people down (christmas break too of course) and no change will happen. Short memories and all.

Or cheering for a loss to get a better draft pick, as usual. I mean at this point of the year what is the point of getting another win. Really there is no point whatsoever, it is completely and utterly meaningless. A bit of sarcasm here but also partially true.

Not really fair, but a reality.

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#211 Alsker
December 23 2013, 09:21PM
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Glad we're winning but how do you explain Yak's 4 shifts for 3 minutes?

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#215 RexHolez
December 23 2013, 10:25PM
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didn't bother watching tonight, why would I? just turned on Ched and it sounds like the boys didn't want to see too many jerseys on the ice so they showed up!

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#216 RexHolez
December 23 2013, 10:31PM
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thanks for actually showing up boys! too bad the contracts arnt being handed out tonight

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#217 **
December 24 2013, 01:00AM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Not true. Go look at a record book and get back to me.

And when people say the best or worst teams or players they use the entire season, not half of it. That isn't my rule, it is just how it has been when people compare teams. And most statisticians wait until the end or a season to accurately compare to previous years, otherwise it is just a projection History shows many teams can have vastly different first or second halves of a season, both in improvment or in a decline.

You're both using the wrong stat to prove your point. You need the points percentage to make the equivalencies match for both seasons.

THe PP doesn't go as far back as 1993-1994 in the NHL website but it's easy to calculate.

For 1993/1994 with a record of 11-23-5 in 39 games, the P% is .361.

For 2013/2014 with a record of 12-24-3 in 39 games, the P% is .361.

The Oilers are actually exactly where they were back in 1993/1994.

When you do it this way you make it only about the ability to obtain points and nothing else. This eliminates noise and bias from adding other elements of comparison like number of wins, or overtimes or ties.

Rules may change,but the ability to get points out of a max total remains the same.

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#218 Gored 1970
December 24 2013, 09:26AM
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Don't blame the players for the Oilers struggles (at least not entirely). They are who they are and the Oilers knew who they were and their playing style when they drafted them. I have been rough on Eakins but he can only coach what he is given. It's tough to win in this league without a good defense and good goal tending - of which the Oilers have neither.

No, the blame should be placed squarely on the shoulders of Kevin Lowe, his GMs and the scouting staff because they aren't doing enough to find better players. Just picking from Central Scouting's list come draft time isn't doing the job. Oilers don't have a competent starting goalie - go find one. Both Vancouver's Eddie Lack (6/2, .928 PCT, and 1.93 GAA) and LA's Martin Jones (8/1, .953 PCT and 1.31 GAA) were not drafted. These organizations have done their homework and have found and signed these and other undrafted players. I know nobody likes the Canucks but they have three other starters in Tanev (top 4 D), Stanton (top 6 D) and Burrows (top 6 fwd) who were not drafted. That's an organization that is working hard to find better players. Time for the Oilers to quit relying entirely on the draft, roll up their sleeves and find better players. If your scouting network can't find them either expand the network or replace them.

The Oilers missed Stanton when Chicago placed him on waivers. The Canucks grabbed him and felt so strongly about him they made him a top 6 D immediately. He played in Moose Jaw which is only an 8 hour drive from Edmonton. If the Oilers had done their homework instead of sitting around the boardroom in their expensive suits feeling smug their positions, they would have known about Stanton and picked him up.

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#219 S4H1
December 23 2013, 03:34PM
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Brian Bickel... Drafted in 2004. Played first significant minutes in 2010. Six year development? Impossible! Noone has that much patience!

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#220 reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)
December 23 2013, 05:55PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

And my GDP:

Oilers 5-2. Fans go nuts. No jerseys and other detritus will be tossed.

But Calgary looms...

And the worst mid-season record in oilers history is already a fact.

i wanna believe that they can win. i really do.

Please?

For Christmas?

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#221 bulldog12
December 23 2013, 06:14PM
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You guys are taking this way to serious. Its sports. I bet it's starting to affect your family life and at work. Your wife's and coworkers are probably getting tired of your temper tantrums and ranting and raving. The Oilers, Eskimos and Blue Jays all suck. Nothing I can do about it but the sun comes up the next day. Suck it up, it can't get worse so it has to get better. Try laughing about it.

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#222 kale
December 23 2013, 07:13PM
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Oilers win tonight...if all of the fan backlash doesnt get them motivated nothing will. We shall see....

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#223 kale
December 23 2013, 07:28PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

1:00 today - starts at the 1:35 mark give or take.

Useful if only because Bob replays the entire eakins comment. Bob thinks it gives some kine of exoneration of what he said in the soundbite, but i think - and i think you will agree - he only digs a deeper hole.

You did really well with that Gord...prior to that there was way too much spin going on...

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#224 Bucknuck
December 23 2013, 07:41PM
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I keep waiting for them to turn a corner. I keep defending them. I keep hoping, and I keep cheering. I am a fan.

Now it's time to have something to cheer for. the turnaround begins tonight, Boys.

6-4 Oil win.

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#225 vetinari
December 23 2013, 08:57PM
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Blue Paint wrote:

Louis, just once call me my real name ...Crease. Try it with me, slowly: Crease

Louis fought a lot when he was playing and some words are now just forever lost to him...

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#226 boxman
December 23 2013, 09:45PM
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Jason did you edit your pointless comment and if so why?

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#227 boxman
December 23 2013, 09:58PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

I ask you this...

If he threw his jersey, but showed up the next game, bought beer and food and parking...what exactly did his gesture accomplish?

If the point was to say he was annoyed that is fine, but if he shows up the next game and still buys beer, food etc, it won't make the Oilers worried that he'll leave.

If your girl says you are cut off, cause you came home late, but then the next day you two shag, would it make you think twice about not coming home late. Or if she cut you off for a month, would it have more of an impact?

I understand why you and others feel it was a gesture of "I'm anoonyed and can't take it anymore," but if you go back the very next game doesn't it suggest you "will continue to take it?"

We don't have to agree, but to me that one action won't change anything. Had he said he was done with the Oilers and started a wave of other fans following him then it would have been significant.

There lies the problem, however bad it feels it is so hard to not care. I believe it was a gesture that spoke to the frustrations of so many of us. The consensus out here is that Katz and the front office could care less about the fans and are arrogant beyond belief. My feelings are they are well past the stage where they should act so arrogant. It is time for them to step up, be humble and listen to the frustrations of tier 1 and tier 2 fans.

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#228 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 23 2013, 10:02PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

I didn't pick them to be a playoff team for the exact reasons you stated, too much of the same thing.

They have some very good building blocks up front, but their blueline is so thin it is scary. They have potential in Klefbom, Nurse and Marincin, and potentially Ekblad, but they need some experienced NHl D-men.

MacTavish will be more proactive than Tambellini, which isn't hard, but his next moves will be more difficult than his first summer as a GM. He has to realize that while he has some good forwards, he has too many similar pieces.

The other major concern now is goaltending. You can't win without consistent goaltending, and the Oilers haven't had any this year.

Hiller, Halak, Bryzgalov, Dubnyk, Elliott and Scrivens are UFAs.

Veterans like Miller, Brodeur and Thomas likely woudn't come here, so they have to pick from the aforementioned six.

Hiller is the best option, but he is the starter in Anaheim. I know they have some young goalies in the system, but are they willing to roll the dice on them, or would they prefer to keep Hiller for a few more years. I'm not sure he'd get much more than his current cap hit of $4.5 million, so I'm still not convinced the Ducks will automatically let him walk, but if they do, then the Oilers better be calling his agent.

I think they are at a fork in the road. If MacTavish can't improve their D, then I see them going down the playoffless path.

I agree with fork in the road. Good analogy. I will stick to my guns that the required turnover would need to be 10 + boidies...character being the key with the additions.

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#229 Drowning in Oil
December 23 2013, 10:09PM
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I know everyone has a lovefest with Hall but I just don't see it. He gets involved, I'll give you that, but he is a very reckless player and I just don't the Oilers ever winning with him.

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#230 Kypreos
December 23 2013, 10:11PM
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WTF

Please be patience with Oilers management. Kevin Lowe has done everything for this team.

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#231 Serious Gord
December 23 2013, 11:54PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Explain to me how beating up a Flames team that has many of their best players injured will be a "set the tone' game. Beating a depleted Flames team will give them the boost they need? I sure hope they have higher standards than that.

Why resort to "what if they lost" arguments. Weak, very weak, since what ifs only lead to impossible to prove speculation.

You can keep trying to overhype the jersey toss all you like.

It is not the toss it is what it symbolized for a very large cohort of oilers fans. And that is clearly demonstrated by the ensuing reaction. To the act.

And the same goes for the game against cgy. that cgy is in a weakened state is irrelevant. It is relevant that the flames are our biggest rival. Our foil to which everyone compares the oil and derides the oil for not meeting expectations while cgy exceeds theirs (which they did again tonight). Friday really seems to me to be a put up or shut up game for the oil. Lose and I think all is lost. Win and maybe. Just maybe. They can have a successful second half.

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#232 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 24 2013, 12:06AM
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Merry Christmas Eve....FIST!

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#233 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 24 2013, 01:02AM
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@Zarny

Zarny......Serious question......are you a woman?.......because if you are, you know more about hockey than any woman I've ever met. Just curious.

Edit: I think someone trashed me for being sarcastic or sexist or something.......not trying to be....just see the picture and the name Zarny....and would like to know....honest question.

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#234 camdog
December 24 2013, 06:49AM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

It is also important to state truths...

Oilers 1993/1994...first 39 games.. 11-23-5, and they lost their 40th game.

Through 39 games this year the Oilers are 12-24-3. That is a better record based on wins. And if Oilers win one of their next two games they will be better than two other years at the half way point. They have many issues, but it is important to state the exact truths when comparing previous seasons.

Shoot out wins equal ties in the old system. Your win total is inflated and biased when comparing this year's team to the 94 team.

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#235 Neal
December 24 2013, 07:26AM
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Sure Jason, there you go muddying the waters with facts and common sense...

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#236 Serious Gord
December 24 2013, 07:54AM
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Morgue wrote:

Serious gord I'd suggest you are reading into things a little too much. Quoting Churchill my god you have to much time on your hands

Well let's see... Others have alluded to many other big events in history and sacred items during this - edmonton's version of jersey shore, I'm just following suit.

That and I'm already in Christmas vacay...

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#237 michael
December 24 2013, 09:27AM
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Light of a new day brings renewed hope to ON. The team was lead by Hall and Yak. Yak stepped up his game to a level he has not done yet in his short time in the NHL. Wow. I saw him channeling the ghost of ESA Tikkanen last night. He had the Jets in high dudgeon. The chicken wing was nasty. Then the melee. Wow.

Gazdic stepping in for Yak on Stuart. The guy has shown willingness to do the job. 10 fights this season so far. The comments from Yak show how important Gazdic has become to this team.

When were evaluating MacT's moves this season the acquisition of Gazdic has to be right up there with the signing of Gordon.

MacT deserves credit when credit is due.

I have to also say that MacT has made some questionable moves in signing a unproven NHL dmen in Belov and having him play the kind of minutes he has this season. Grebeshkov was a head shaker. I would have preferred Fistric resigned. There is definitely room for improvement on the backend this coming offseason.

I did like Eakins adding Joensuu upfront last night. Did his job by deflecting the brunt of the Jets physical play. It resulted in Gags and Ebs having more space. As much as I like Joensuu there is a need for a better more skilled big man. He is big but he is no Chris Stewart.

Overall the Oilers go in to the holidays on a positive. Friday night will be fun against fun.

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#238 **
December 24 2013, 01:05PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

But with the advent of the extra point for an overtime win (or loss depending on your perspective) some games in today's era are worth more points than others - an overtime game gives two pts to the winner and one to the loser fir a total of three versus just two for a game that ends in regulation.

Thus comparing point/game avgs between the two years in question is gibberish.

you really don't understand ratios do you?

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#239 ColourMeImpressed
December 23 2013, 02:25PM
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@Chris.

I just... I dunno. I have a hard time dumping on the guy and the team when things have so clearly gone sideways and the criticism is now constant. I have a hard time blaming him for trying to create something positive out of a negative event - however justified that negative event is.

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#240 Dallylamma
December 23 2013, 02:30PM
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reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan) wrote:

Do you believe that the fans in Detroit should be thrown out for the Octupus on the ice? During the fluke cup run here were you horrified that the steak was thrown on the ice? Did you immediatly call the cops?

When a hat trick gets scored do you get nervous that a riot squad will appear to deal with all the miscreants and vandals who are not living up to the obligation of what their ticket says?

Good Grief

The steak thing was a media stunt by CISN...freaking lame.

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#241 george99
December 23 2013, 04:12PM
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For those of you are suggesting who Jason Gregor is being influenced by Mr.Katz on what to say - please get a life! You sound paranoid and stupid!

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#242 westcoastoil
December 23 2013, 05:57PM
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JG - re: your point on waiting for D to develop, take a quick glance at Victor Hedman in TB. He's a beast and will be a stud #1 for a decade to come. He has had a veteran team around him up front and on the back end and is now in his 4th year becoming an impact player.

Nurse, Klefbom aren't likely in his category of player and as such if they can start impacting the game in 3-4 years that in itself is an optimistic timeline.

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#243 dvasteroid
December 23 2013, 06:41PM
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Ed in PV wrote:

Gregor

You are so far put of touch with the Oil fan base it's scary. Tossing a jersey after the game is over is completely different than concerns about tossing things on the ice during the game. If you can't understand this difference you are an idiot, and I don't think you are an idiot. Far from being "bush league" it was a profound expression.

As for Eakins calling the guy a quitter. A coach shouldn't pick a fight with the fans, he will always lose.

If the Oil lose again tonight I think we will see more than one jersey. If they lose badly we will see many.

If I were a suspicious type I might be concerned that TSN has told it's employees to go easy on the Oil as they would like to unseat CHED as the rights holder next time around and don't want to piss off the empire.

Here hoping for tsn to get rights to oiler broadcasting. ..any one but Quebecor/sun media! Yuck.

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#244 Rod from Viking
December 23 2013, 06:44PM
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@Serious Gord

What segment were you on Oiler's now in?

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#245 Brian
December 23 2013, 07:32PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

Eakins has tweeted a 'clarification' of his comments today. No apology anywhere - very similar to lowes non-apology after his six rings comments. so further evidence/confirmation that the oilers PR dept is just as inept as the team.

So what did he "tweet". I'm a non tweeter/tweetee.

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#246 Burnward
December 23 2013, 10:12PM
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Great response tonight from you guys. See you Friday!

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#247 boxman
December 23 2013, 10:13PM
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In answer to you I think if you are correct that the gesture doesn't carry any weight if the protester returns to watch games speaks to the arrogance of the Oilers hierarchy. It is time for the owner to speak to the frustrations of the fans and yes I get it that winning makes this go away. The dynasty Oilers won but that didn't make Peter Pocklington a good owner and it won't take the stain off Lowe or Mr Katz.

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#248 Sailge
December 23 2013, 10:14PM
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Moral victory.

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#249 Serious Gord
December 23 2013, 10:28PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

And my GDP:

Oilers 5-2. Fans go nuts. No jerseys and other detritus will be tossed.

But Calgary looms...

And the worst mid-season record in oilers history is already a fact.

6-2.

I was close.

With apologies to Winston Churchill the Calgary game on the 27th is the hinge of the season.

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#250 boxman
December 23 2013, 10:41PM
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bulldog12 wrote:

Jersey jersey jersey blah blah blah blah. Give it a rest already. What a beauty of a game 6 GF 2 GA a Gazdic fight a scrum at the end for team building and headed into the Xmas break feeling good!!!!!!!!

Seriously...blah, blah, blah. After such a great game and now I'm angry at all the educators that let you down. It's sad when people fall through the cracks.

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