SCENES FROM A MAUL

Lowetide
December 08 2013 07:41AM

The Edmonton Oilers won the battle last night, but once again lost the war. The shot differential said Edmonton was well clear of the Flames (52-33) but the final score told us Calgary won the day. The story of last night was execution, and at this point I'm in favor of it.

SHOT DIFFERENTIAL BEATDOWN

The Oilers had a field day last night based on even-strength shots for and against (my thanks to Michael Parkatti for the table above), hell the guy they benched went 12-0 in the discipline. The problem for Edmonton? They're a miserable team without the puck and increasingly they are not willing to do the hard work of getting it back.

I'm not a guy who talks about "physical presence" or "someone to get in your face" very much, because for the most part I do believe those things are overrated. However, this edition of the Edmonton Oilers needs someone to light a fire under their ass, the way Glen Sather did with the Boys on the Bus when they were pissing about instead of eating their vegetables. This team could use a whole lot less "Harlem Globetrotters" skill and a lot more lunchpail work ethic and attention to detail.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

There are two ways out of this:

  1. Impress upon these players that "fleeing the zone for offense" is treason, and that you're letting the team down.
  2. Trade one or two of these players for new ones in order to grab the group's attention. 

I bet Craig MacTavish is edging closer to the second option. The Edmonton Oilers are going to finish last with Jordan Eberle, Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Sam Gagner and Justin Schultz, they can sure as hell finish last without them.

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on TSN 1260.
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#151 brackenbury
December 08 2013, 11:20PM
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my comment. Was not intended as a reply to @puck in throat. Sorry bout that bud

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#152 Snoop
December 09 2013, 01:21AM
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6 ring circus wrote:

We were told to be patient during this rebuild and that this was the best thing that could happen to the Oiler's, so we all bought into this rebuild that Kevin Lowe and Steve Tambellini put together only to find out 7 years latter that we are no further ahead today then when we started,Gagner,Eberle and Yakopov are all 5'11" between 180-200 pounds,we have one defencemen who weighs more than 210 pounds Belov.The team plays way to soft,does not compete on most nights,whenever they play a bigger team, which is on most nights, they cannot compete physically and usually take a beating along the boards,on the ice and in front of the net.If and it's a very big if ,this team ever made the playoffs, they would not make it past the first round.This is Gagners 7th year already, he isn't going to turn his game around, what we have seen from him these past 7 years is the best we are going to get.Its time that ownership fires the architect (Kevin Lowe) and brings in a President and General manager from a winning organization to turn this around,only then will the fans be rewarded with a hockey team,this management group has had seven years and they royally screwed up with the team they have assembled,the players know it,the fans know it and the media knows it and its time ownership does something about it, instead of sitting there and taking our money for an inferior product, put a team on the ice that the loyal fans deserve and can be proud of.

Buddy you sound like you are a beggar. This is why the product of Katy's stinks.. If guys like you become tire four fun and stop supporting this over inflated product then you might see better result...

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#153 Ryan
December 09 2013, 08:43AM
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@He who knows

Mactavish wasn't fired as head coach. He resigned. His resume is perfect for a new GM and if the Oilers didn't hire him, someone else would have. Give him some time. Tambellini was terrible GM but he was recently hired in some capacity in Anaheim. I agree that Lowe should have been fired a long time ago and I'm not sure what Howson brings to the table.

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#154 Greasy Goal
December 09 2013, 09:59AM
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@Puck_In_Throat

All decisions made under the brutal management of Steve Tambellini, hopefully Mac T won't mess up our top young defence prospects. Time will tell but the Oilers need to learn to be patient, becuase hurrying a product into the NHL clearly does not work. (Just check the Islanders)

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#155 TigerUnderGlass
December 09 2013, 10:12AM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

To keep things in perspective......Yes 82 games is too early to pass final judgement on Yak.....however you can still make judgements...and he is definitely not performing like an elite # 1 overall pick. He ABSOLUTELY does not have Pavel Bure quickness or speed, and his shooting skills if you include accuracy and the ability to get a shot off against NHL calibre defensemen, are not elite calibre either.

However what you do see is that he is physically solid for someone his age...his ability to hit and take a hit is above average for someone his size and he is solid on his skates.

He sees the ice well, has excellent passing and play making skills for his age.

So yes the natural ability is there....he's just got to be coached how to think the game at the NHL level and how to get the most out of the special skills he does possess....that's on the coaches, his teamtes and of course Yak himself (and his agent) .....it's going to take ALOT more than "finding the range".... It is a work in progress....but we should be seeing significant development over the course of every two to three month segment.

1. He is performing remarkably like an elite #1 overall pick over their first season worth of games.

2. To be clear - you believe Yakupov's ticket is not his shot, but his playmaking? Is this correct?

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#156 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 09 2013, 10:32AM
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TigerUnderGlass wrote:

1. He is performing remarkably like an elite #1 overall pick over their first season worth of games.

2. To be clear - you believe Yakupov's ticket is not his shot, but his playmaking? Is this correct?

To be clear....I like him as a player....I like his mix of skills.... His shot has the potential to put him in that elite class if the rest of his game rounds into form...but there are no guarantees.....there are dozens maybe hundreds of guys with hard shots that never become elite goal scores.....personally based on what I see now I don't think he has natural Pavel Bure breakaway speed.....or natural Mike Bossy, Alexander Ovechkin sniper type talent....so he might not turn out to be the perenial 40 to 50 goal scorer that many are predicting.....seems like a potential 30 goal guy who occasionally overachievers and hits 40......not a bad thing at all....just think we should temper our expectations.

If we don't temper our expectations, people will soon start hating on him like they did on Jason Arnott and Joffrey Lupul etc etc

And yes I think he has untapped play making ability that is being under utilized perhaps under developed...maybe because his team mates think he's too cocky or coaches think he plays a loose undisciplined game...not sure what it is.....he's like a wild mustang and they're trying to break/saddle him.....but yes...at times.. I see elite play making skills.

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