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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#151 Rama Lama
December 23 2013, 05:09PM
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I wonder how many jerseys get thrown out on the ice........when does the fire Lowe chant get so loud that Katz can no longer ignore this?

It's coming and probably tonight ........if there is a hockey god, then let Lowe get fired.

I'm good with that even if nothing else gets accomplished in the next year or so?

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#152 He Who Knows
December 23 2013, 05:18PM
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I grew up watching the Dougie Weight Oilers and boy were those Oilers hardworking and always played with pride and respect to the crest. They were a tight knit group who always stood up for each other. I miss those guys so much, can't believe what we have become. Screw you Kevin Lowe!! Screw you!

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#153 Oasis
December 23 2013, 05:44PM
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sizedoesmatter wrote:

Throwing the jersey on the ice was disrespectful And might have caught the oilers managements attention but It also Is a slap to the face of all the Oilers who wore that sweater. Gretztky, Messier, Anderson, Kurri, Dave semenko,Dave hunter on and on all the moments that this team that has brought me so much pride and joy over the years. This current version of the Oilers Is struggling. but don't think throwing the jersey is the same as booing It just makes me sad

This is crap. What's more disrespectful to former Oilers? Prima-Donna players making millions of dollars and mailing it in night after night or a fan who probably paid close to $300 for his gold club seat and is sick and tired of 8 years of the same crap?

If the jersey is so damn sacred then those players putting it on should show some pride. I don't care if they lose, but compete for crying out loud. If that jersey is so sacred than maybe these past players like Lowe wouldn't let the team sink this low.

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#154 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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#155 Alsker
December 23 2013, 06:04PM
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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.

Perhaps not, will we hear: "We didn't quit" as a chant instead of "Fire Lowe or Lowe must GO". Well played by the Klown PR guys.

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#156 white towel
December 23 2013, 06:19PM
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@sizedoesmatter

No disrespect for the former players as they have proven themselfs in the past. What is the basis to show the current players the same? Most of these guys could not carry the equipment of a Hunter or a Lumley let alone skate on the same ice.

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#157 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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#158 MessyEH!
December 23 2013, 07:18PM
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sizedoesmatter wrote:

Throwing the jersey on the ice was disrespectful And might have caught the oilers managements attention but It also Is a slap to the face of all the Oilers who wore that sweater. Gretztky, Messier, Anderson, Kurri, Dave semenko,Dave hunter on and on all the moments that this team that has brought me so much pride and joy over the years. This current version of the Oilers Is struggling. but don't think throwing the jersey is the same as booing It just makes me sad

The only ones shaming the jersey, are the losers on the ice. And the "Lowe lifes" who are selling us this garbage.

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#159 Rick Stroppel
December 23 2013, 08:24PM
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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.

PLEASE LET US FACE REALITY

"Moving in the right direction". In the last four years, last, last, second last, 20th. This year, probably 2nd or 3rd last. How exactly is this "moving in the right direction"?

"Show some class". You mean like MacTavish showed some class when he fired Ralph Krueger by skype? Ralph got 48 games, no training camp. Did he get a fair chance? Was that classy? Ralph had more class in his little finger than Lowe and MacTavish combined. BTW, how do you think that firing might affect other people in the NHL thinking about coming to work here?

"Be humble". You mean like Lowe? He does nothing but brag. Has he EVER acknowledged his mistakes? When he made his famous "six rings" speech, did he sound like a really humble, thoughtful guy who had learned from his mistakes? Or did he sound like an entitled, self-satisfied, arrogant jackbutt?

People who really know hockey know that this team and this franchise are the laughing stock of the league. Pointing that out is not "whining", it is telling the truth.

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#160 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 23 2013, 09:24PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

I am actually more in touch with fans than you think. I had over 500 texts into the show today, and it was about 50/50 with those who liked the jersey toss and others who didn't.

I've learned people who post on the Nation are very passionate, but they don't speak for every fan. There are many types.

The guy admitted he would wear a jersey to the next game. So what was so profound about his actions? What is he protesting if he shows up the next game and wears a jersey? Pointless.

Many so called heros are heros by way of accidental circumstance ....not because their intent was heroic but because they're actions are symbolic. Not saying this guy is a hero....but if his actions inspire others to take up the cause....his actions may turn out to be viewed as heroic.....at the very least his actions have come to represent the feelings of a lot Oilers fans.

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#161 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 23 2013, 09:46PM
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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.

If the Oilers weren't worried what his actions represent and the affect they could have in motivating other fans....why would MacTavish seek him out to talk to him?

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#162 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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#163 **
December 23 2013, 10:45PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

My point is that I don't believe his actions change anything. They fire fans and Eakins up, but it won't change anything. He will keep going to games, and the Oilers aren't going to make changes right away. I understand why some think it was symbolic, but I don't see it making any impact on anything. Do you? If so, how?

There's a score sheet that begs to disagree with you.

" A pebble tossed from a beach can become a tsunami on the other side of the world."

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#164 Dave "Killer" Carlson
December 23 2013, 10:53PM
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@Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

That's a fair assessment. I wouldn't have booed them off, it was a good game. Not sure I would have cheered either. One game doesn't make up for the complete lack of effort we've seen in some games this year.

I've also hated the fan salute ever since teams started doing it after the 2004-2005 lockout. I think it has become overused and lost its impact. Opening night, season finale, and a big game here or there is fine but not every home win.

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#165 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 23 2013, 11:05PM
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If we ever become a contender, 10 of these 12 guys won't be here. Lander, Gagner, Jones, Hemsky, Smyth,Potter, N Schultz, Dubnyk,Acton, Belov, Larsen, Arcobello.........that's a lot of turnover...could take awhile.

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#166 Morgue
December 24 2013, 06:45AM
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** wrote:

There's a score sheet that begs to disagree with you.

" A pebble tossed from a beach can become a tsunami on the other side of the world."

Well said g bear. As for Gregor it's hilarious how he splits hairs thinking throwing a hat on the ice for a hat ricks is completely fine but the jersey is offside. What a load of crap

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#167 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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#168 Brian
December 24 2013, 07:40AM
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I thought this was "OilersNation", not "Serious Gord Nation".

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#169 The Real Scuba Steve
December 23 2013, 01:02PM
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Oiler fans are not going to wait 10 years to compete for a playoff spot like Chicago. Unless Katz does a fire sale on his management.

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#170 reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)
December 23 2013, 01:43PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Your ticket says you can't throw things on the ice. Paying for a product doesn't give you freedom to act how ever you want. Sorry it doesn't.

Where did I say Lowe should stay on? I have no personal gain if he stays or goes, and I've said many times he is the only constant so it is safe to assume he is more part of the problem than the solution.

However, I don't think one person will make that drastic of a change. The organization has many areas it needs to improve on. Start with Lowe, sure, but understand more needs to happen than firing one man for this team to win.

Firing Lowe may have an effect right away in that it will show that there is actual accountability in this organization. Won't make the players better but it may show them that tjhere are actual consequences to failure. But they see that the head guy who loses keeps his job. They even bring back people who didn't help win before.

you are correct that it wont change the steaming pile we have for a team but maybe it will pick up the motivation.

Lowe needs to go because he is an abominable hockey man and so all players coaches and management types know that if they don't perform there will no longer be a free pass.

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#171 JJ
December 23 2013, 01:43PM
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Eakins needs to be more assertive with these kids.. If someone isn't putting in the effort, or quitting after the first 20 minutes, they need to be held accountable. Maybe he could be like hartman from full metal jacket..

"Are you quitting on me? Well, are you? Then quit, you slimy ****ing walrus-looking pieces of ****! Get the **** off of my skating rink!"

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#172 bobo
December 23 2013, 01:56PM
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Are people seriously saying throwing the jersey on the ice is bush league and disrespectful? This organization is bush league and disrespectful for their god awful performances night in and out. I as a fan am done for the year. I go to Oilernation a fraction of what I used to, I walk right by oilers gear in sports stores, I have retired my oilers ball caps and have switched to baseball and nfl teams. I have an old Oilers knock off jersey that I bought from China for $20 and if I was going tonight and they put up another performance like the last one, god damn right would I throw it on the ice. I would aim for the Oilers bench.

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#173 oildawg99
December 23 2013, 02:12PM
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I know I don't speak for everyone but I I know my personal beef with this team is the effort they put in every night. I expected them to lose quite a bit this season. I think most people did. However, when players can't seem to put in a 60 minute effort is when I get frustrated. I don't know if Eakins is shell shocked but he looks seriously confused. Even Perron made a comment about how he can't believe Eakins did not lay into this team after last game? There is no passion in this organization. From Lowe pissing around on his phone to Eakins calmly taking another beating on the bench the team has lost its mojo. This lack of passion seems to transition right through to the players who in turn stop giving a rats a$$. I want to see some water bottles thrown, some ejections, players stopping at the crease and standing up for each other. This team is missing heart and that is why I am frustrated. I don't see frustration out on the ice I see indifference and that's what gets the fans ticked off. It goes beyond simply losing.

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#174 DisappointedFan
December 23 2013, 02:19PM
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Jason the reason why Oilers fans have the right to be angry and why your comparison of "Chicago had an even worse go for a decade" is because the Oilers consistently finish lower than the Blackhawks (26 teams and in the league and all). When your team is the certified last place team for multiple years compared to just a low rank team there is more reason to be upset.

The record shows if you want to compare the two teams directly by Points after 82 games(including on pace) and finishing spot in the league (by year into losing streak)

Year 1: 73pts/18th place CHI// 71/25 Oil Year 2: 70/21 CHI// 88/19 Oil Year 3: 78/21 CHI// 85/21 Oil Year 4: 71/22 CHI// 62/30 Oil Year 5: 96/9 CHI// 62/30 Oil Year 6: 79/17 CHI// 74/29 Oil Year 7: 59/29 CHI// 77/24 Oil Year 8: 65/28 CHI// 54/29 Oil (Current season for Oiler as on pace for)

I think it's pretty clear the Oilers have finished or will finish lower in the ranking more often than the Blackhawks as well as having actually finished last a few more times. They also finish on average 5.25 slots lower than Chicago did in their losing years.

The fans have endured a bit more terrible play here than other places.

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#175 outdoorzguy
December 23 2013, 02:42PM
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Better to go get 4 Oilers jerseys and throw them on the ice tonight at various times. Oh wait, not a good idea. That would put about $300 of the 4 jersey sale into the pockets of Katz. Just what he wants. The only thing that matters to him, because clearly the quality of the hockey team means nothing to him.

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#176 Soccer Steve
December 23 2013, 03:12PM
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@Jason Gregor

"Your ticket says you can't throw things on the ice. Paying for a product doesn't give you freedom to act how ever you want. Sorry it doesn't."

"...other than a hat after a hat trick..."

We can nitpick as we please too, you know.

Don't be ridiculous. I know it's tough, but try. It's christmas, after all.

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#177 Bleed Oil
December 23 2013, 03:12PM
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Not so obvious game day prediction:

Belov unleashes the caged beast that is his clapper and finally scores

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#178 OilCanFan
December 23 2013, 03:43PM
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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.

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#179 Quintana
December 23 2013, 03:50PM
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Hey Jason, I wonder where Lowe, Eakins would be if this same situation happens in Montreal?

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#180 Spydyr
December 23 2013, 04:09PM
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OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:If the team has any and I do mean any "balls" they show up like a playoff game.That being said they don't. Please prove me wrong.

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#181 Chris.
December 23 2013, 06:00PM
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westcoastoil wrote:

Bottom line is if Lowe & Katz respected the jersey as much as the fans, and more than their egos, the team wouldn't be in the mess that it is.

I'll give Eakins and MacT a pass because you can't expect them to clean up this debacle in a matter of months.

When Tambellini and Quinn were busy crashing the Oilers into last place many fans were saying, "You can't expect them to clean up Lowe's mess in just a few months..."

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#182 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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#183 Chainsawz
December 23 2013, 08:14PM
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I appreciate the effort tonight so far by Oilers.

They have responded better tonight after a statement from a fan than they ever have from anything Eakins has said.

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#184 vetinari
December 23 2013, 08:17PM
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I wondered if they would talk about "the jersey". MacT calling the guy is just basic damage control so that they could go on the air tonight and say, "look, we've kissed and made up". Eakins totally blew the interview and the broadcast crew is trying to spin as he's trying to take the heat off the team by taking it on himself. To use Eakins' words, "that's bull crap." He shot off his mouth first and now they have to do the clean up.

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#185 6 ring circus
December 23 2013, 08:26PM
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I am glad to see there's quite a few empty seats,two of them belong to me ,I stayed home to watch on tv ,even if the Oilers win tonight ,it does not change a thing ,both Lowe and Eakins are arrogant pr*cks and have lost the support, of the majority of the fan base.

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#186 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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#187 Rick Stroppel
December 23 2013, 09:10PM
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JERSEYGATE EXPLAINED!

I am listening on the radio and Jack Michaels just explained Jerseygate. He said something like this:

"Folks, the man who threw the jersey was temporarily insane. He immediately apologized to Oilers Management for his actions! Other fans condemned him! Everyone agrees that throwing jerseys is a bad idea! Nothing to see here!"

I am so relieved. For awhile there I thought that the fans might be turning against the team!

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#188 ColourMeImpressed
December 23 2013, 09:15PM
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Flames beat the Blues, 4-3 in the shootout.

sigh

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#189 Tuningout
December 23 2013, 09:49PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Unless he throws a jersey on the ice tonight, then his protest is not like the suggestions you used. Those people do the same thing day after day. He isn't.

It confuses me that you can somehow read my previous post and try to suggest I said it wasn't a protest. I asked what was he protesting? Major difference.

Ok yes it is different. But same implied meaning. Not protesting vs what he was protesting.

It's a 6-0 loss from the Oilers with no compete.. do we have to ask what he was protesting ? He's not a "free edmonton" protestor is he ?

I guess what confuses me is how you are turning this issue around. So you are saying if he didn't wear a jersey this next game it would be more clear what his protest was ?

Your point just seems about as clear as my first batch of homemade beer. Cloudy.

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#190 The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33
December 23 2013, 09:58PM
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I hope at some point in the season Gazdic and Clitsome get it on...hehehehe..

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

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

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#193 YFC Prez
December 23 2013, 10:18PM
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Drowning in Oil wrote:

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.

They won tonight with him. And he was the best player on the ice. Weird night to be calling out Hall

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#194 bulldog12
December 23 2013, 10:21PM
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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!!!!!!!!

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#195 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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#196 Butters
December 23 2013, 10:53PM
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** wrote:

There's a score sheet that begs to disagree with you.

" A pebble tossed from a beach can become a tsunami on the other side of the world."

I agree. Jersey night did accomplish something The Oilers were in full damage control mode today. Dallas was ticked, but then clarified his comments via twitter. If he wasn't strongly encouraged to do that by higher-ups, I'd be mighty surprised. The Oilers might be getting a little more concerned about how the fans are feeling these days...

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#198 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 23 2013, 11:15PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Seven of those guys are UFA and Lander, Larsen, Arcobello are RFA...

Those pieces could be switched out sooner than you think if they wanted to, and only Gagner and Acton have contacts after this season.

Fork in the road Jason......here's praying that they want to!

Yogi Berra?....."if you come to a fork in the road....take it!"

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#199 cubsfan
December 23 2013, 11:34PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

My point is that I don't believe his actions change anything. They fire fans and Eakins up, but it won't change anything. He will keep going to games, and the Oilers aren't going to make changes right away. I understand why some think it was symbolic, but I don't see it making any impact on anything. Do you? If so, how?

I think the jersey incident was brilliant symbolism.

Although it wasnt Tommie Smith or John Carlos raising their fists in the air in 1968 Olympics as a human rights salute for equality, its an indelible point in time which is being discussed across Canada.

Youre right. We wont stop watching games, we will still buy tickets, jerseys tshirt and caps and beer.....

But how else can our frustrations be heard? I think they have, judging by the reaction of the coach and management.

What makes it more raw is that it was instinctual and not planned, and reverberated across the country.

(PS dont compare the jerseys 'desecration' in the same vane as a flag that we protect.....its a game.....the jersey is not sacred, and the Oilers of the past are not heroes or saints......its insulting)

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#200 **
December 23 2013, 11:39PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

That's a BS Confuciusism. No way a pebble ripple amplifies into a tsunami.

wow, just wow

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