ABOUT THAT FAST START . . .

Robin Brownlee
February 20 2013 12:09AM

With 33 games remaining in this shortened 48-game NHL season it's premature for those of us who thought (or hoped) the Edmonton Oilers had an opportunity to make the playoffs to write-off their post-season chances for a seventh straight season, but those so inclined might want to get started.

What those of us – there were many – who picked the Oilers to sneak in based, at least partially, on the feeling that Ralph Krueger's team would get off to a quick start because so many core players were tearing it up in Oklahoma City and elsewhere, can't argue is that premise is officially shot to hell now.

The Oilers are 6-6-3 for 15 points after Tuesday's 3-1 loss to the Los Angeles Kings. And, while that leaves them just two points out of a playoff position with 66 points remaining on the table, what we've seen so far hardly qualifies as a fast start.

Yes, it's better than the 4-8-3 record for 11 points they had after 15 games in 2010-11, when they finished 30th, but well off the 20 points (9-4-2) they had last season when they finished, ahem, 29th. It's a record that'll likely look a helluva lot worse by the time the "hurry hard" types vacate Rexall Place after the Brier – an event that puts the Oilers on the road for nine straight games.

It oughta be a barrel of laughs around here by March 12.

 

ARE HAVING FUN YET?

Dissecting why the Oilers find themselves where they are today makes for great copy in the daily sheets and blogs everywhere – and we'll get a heaping helping of that in coming days and weeks by media types patrolling the rink and those nowhere near it – but the fineries of why, or why not, is wearing mighty thin with fans who expected more. Results, please.

With the fast start angle out the window, one glance at the schedule tells fans yet another season could go south in a hurry. After closing out this homestand against Minnesota and Phoenix, the Oilers embark on that nine-game swing, and it's hardly a stroll down the garden path.

The fun begins in Chicago (they're pretty good right now), where they play twice during the trip, and wraps up in Denver, where I'm guessing a weary outfit might have issues with altitude in the Mile High City. The other stops are in Dallas, St. Louis, Minnesota, Columbus, Detroit and Nashville.

I'm not seeing a bushel of easily acquired points on that trip. By the time the Oilers return, they'll have played 26 games. How many points out of a playoff position might they be by then? Six? Eight? They could be closer to 15th place than eighth by then, no? Fast start my eye.

A real laugh riot, this bunch.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#101 Wendy01
February 20 2013, 04:32PM
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RSD wrote:

Mick McGoo is responsible for the refs in the NHL, his name should be quite familiar in edmonton as one of the most infamous refs. He screwed edmonton in most of the games he reffed. See where I'm going with this?

Ahhh... a Conspiracy! Now it all makes sense!

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#102 Todd
February 20 2013, 06:03PM
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He Who Knows wrote:

The fanbase needs to set up a protest infront of Oilers headquarters or outside Rexall. Start a facebook page or send a tweet. KEVIN LOWE AND STEVE TAMBELLINI NEED TO STEP DOWN. No more firing coaches, no more patience on the utter stupidity of management and no more EXCUSES. This has gone on for too long. Rebuilding is one thing but even average Joe can go out and draft Hall and company. Daryl Katz has been a curse since he bought the team. Stop sniffing old jocks and trying to milk the hardworking citizen of hard earned money for your palace full of incompetent dummies. ENOUGH IS ENOUGH! Everything Brian Burke said of Lowe was damn true. The majority of the fanbase is full of a herd of sheep that do not know a damn thing. This organization is a mess and it has to end now!

YA!

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#103 Todd
February 20 2013, 07:24PM
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Robin Brownlee wrote:

A Facebook page or send a tweet, eh.

That's about the most lazy-assed, ineffective way to approach anything, isn't it? Everybody is for the cause as long as they can carry it out at their covenience -- "Like" the Tambo must go page. FFS.

I seem to recall more than 20,000 people signing up for a fire MacTavish FB page. When those who signed up were asked to show up for a rally at Rexall Place before a game, the media got wind of it and sent reporters to cover the protest.

Less than a dozen people showed up. They were outnumbered by reporters. A similar attempt would have the Oilers LOL, and they should.

You want change? No chance if your commitment to bring it about stops at anything more taxing than thumb-typing a 140-character message or signing up on FB.

Brownlee, What do you suggest? If we as fans are truly upset is there anything we can do?

I don't think the media in this town holds anyone accountable. But I'm not a media guy, so I don't really know how that all works. Do you feel the main stream media are hard enough on management? Seems to me like Lowe and Tambo have got a fairly free ride the past 3-4 years.

Is it because us as fans aren't hard enough first? I know in a place like Montreal the media would eat the team alive for 10 years of incompetence. But is it because the fans demand it and the media as a whole follow the vibe of the city? Or is it the other way around..... Where the hard ass tone of the media puts the fanbase on edge. I'm honestly asking, I'd be curious to know what you think.

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#104 Chet134
February 20 2013, 07:50PM
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Why would Katz want to make any changes. Who cares about our record for the last three years. He's still selling out games and jerseys. He's making money, he has a new area and understands a rebuilt takes time. Status quo.

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#105 Todd
February 20 2013, 07:56PM
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Chet134 wrote:

Why would Katz want to make any changes. Who cares about our record for the last three years. He's still selling out games and jerseys. He's making money, he has a new area and understands a rebuilt takes time. Status quo.

I hate this attitude, and its probably true.

We need to be angry and fierce like Montreal fans/media. Somehow. When was the last time anyone was ran out of town??

MacT was rehired he ran him out so hard.... (For the record I always liked MacT. Maybe I'm the problem...)

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#106 pelhem grenville
February 21 2013, 01:10PM
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...Q

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#107 bdiddy18
February 21 2013, 01:22PM
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Just love it when "fans" demand things from a product (Oilers) they choose to consume.

One day reality will set it in and come to the conclusion my obsession with the in's and outs of the squad is really just about me. It is my choice to involve myself or not and at what level. ahem the definition of fan.

but end it there man! the organization is a business entity just like anything else - did the lockout not teach that to you. IT OWES YOU nothing! It is a one-way street of love .. yes its true. and its all voluntary you CAN turn away at anytime - guess what no one will care from the other end.

So demand away - ask for firings and trades all you want - no different than the crazy guy shouting random nothings on the street - the conversation is with yourself.

Will the management team be held accountable is for Daryl Katz to decide. a 1-3-5 plan was announced at the time of drafting Taylor Hall. They are on year 4... that leaves 18 months for Tambo to deliver ... we will see what Katz does then.

Until then go to games or watch on tv - rant and rave .. enjoy or don't... drink coke or don't buy nike or don't... the business doesn't care.

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#108 Quicksilver ballet
February 21 2013, 01:35PM
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pelhem grenville wrote:

...Q

How's retirement treating you Paul?

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#109 Joe Nosabonada
February 22 2013, 03:46PM
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bdiddy18 wrote:

Just love it when "fans" demand things from a product (Oilers) they choose to consume.

One day reality will set it in and come to the conclusion my obsession with the in's and outs of the squad is really just about me. It is my choice to involve myself or not and at what level. ahem the definition of fan.

but end it there man! the organization is a business entity just like anything else - did the lockout not teach that to you. IT OWES YOU nothing! It is a one-way street of love .. yes its true. and its all voluntary you CAN turn away at anytime - guess what no one will care from the other end.

So demand away - ask for firings and trades all you want - no different than the crazy guy shouting random nothings on the street - the conversation is with yourself.

Will the management team be held accountable is for Daryl Katz to decide. a 1-3-5 plan was announced at the time of drafting Taylor Hall. They are on year 4... that leaves 18 months for Tambo to deliver ... we will see what Katz does then.

Until then go to games or watch on tv - rant and rave .. enjoy or don't... drink coke or don't buy nike or don't... the business doesn't care.

I don't care for your attitude. but your logic is correct.

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