Identity Theft

Jonathan Willis
May 27 2013 12:18PM

Craig MacTavish has been doing what feels like a media blitz since taking over as general manager, making a point of communicating his message clearly and frequently to the Oilers’ fan base. On Friday he appeared on Oilers Now and said a lot of interesting things, though what stood out to me were his comments on team identity.

Chasing

Success is always in vogue. You look at the New Jersey Devils when they won, you had to play a more conservative, trapping style of hockey, a less aggressive style of hockey. Then it transitioned to the Wings, and then you had to play a more skill-level game, a more puck-possession game. Now, the Los Angeles Kings have won the Stanley Cup last year and are threatening again this year with a big, heavy team. I think there are a lot of different ways you can get the job done.

Whenever a team wins the Stanley Cup, there is a lot of time spent dissecting how they won – by fans, by the media, and doubtless also by NHL management. Sometimes, the story is ‘they just won, how does [Team X] we become more like them?’ To a certain degree, it’s healthy – Stanley Cup winners tend to be very good teams, and there’s generally a lot of value in identifying their strengths and seeing how Team X stacks up against them.

But, as MacTavish points out: there are a lot of different ways to win. He mentions three specific examples, but Chicago and Pittsburgh and Anaheim and Carolina and Boston all won Cups during the last CBA, too, and they all had a slightly different way of getting there. It’s a mistake to always chase after the most recent winner; teams can't always be reinventing themselves or moving the goalposts simply because the most recent winner happens to play the game a certain way

The Future

I think first and foremost you have to know what you are as a team, and that’s the most important thing. From my perspective and our organization’s perspective, we’re a team that’s a highly skill-driven team, a team that is going to play a puck-possession game.

MacTavish sees the Oilers as a skill-driven, puck possession team. And it makes sense. Looking at the Oilers’ key players – the youth brought in via lottery picks, plus Justin Schultz and Jordan Eberle – there simply isn’t a base to build a club like San Jose or Los Angeles or St. Louis. Looking at the Kings’ win last year, the smallest of their five most used players was Drew Doughty (6’1”, 208 pounds). Looking at their top nine forwards and top six defencemen, three were under 200 pounds (and one of those guys weighed 199). The Oilers can bulk up all they want, but as long as Eberle and Schultz and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins are playing big minutes they aren’t going to be the Kings.

So they shouldn’t even try.

That’s not to say they don’t need to get bigger – to an extent, I think they do – but they’re never going to beat teams like Los Angeles and Boston by being a poor man’s Bruins or Kings. They have a high-end core, but it’s a core built for playing a different style of game, the style exemplified in the West in recent years by Detroit and Chicago.

The good news for the Oilers is that Craig MacTavish knows that. The vision he’s outlined for the team this summer – bringing in mobility and puck sense on defence, bringing in bottom-six forwards with size that can also contribute offensively, overhauling spots two and three on the goaltending depth chart – are not changes aimed at turning the Oilers into a team that plays a dump-and-chase, grind-it-out game that the top-six simply isn’t built for. They’re changes aimed at supporting the current talent, and evolving the team into the best possible version of itself, rather than a pale imitation of something they aren’t.

Streakcred

Don't forget that it's not too late to play StreakCred - the new playoff pool game from the Nation Network. You can win a trip for 2 to Oktoberfest in Germany among the awesome prizes up for grabs. Now it's only $10 and a portion of the proceeds go to Edmonton Charities. Sign up here.

Recently around the Nation Network

Over at Canucks Army, Thomas Drance talks about the news that Manny Malhotra Hopes To Continue His Playing Career

Malhotra intends to hit the unrestricted free agent market on July fifth, and though I'd suggest he'll struggle to secure a one-way contract, he clearly still wants to play and still wants a chance to end his career on his own terms.

 Click the link above to read the whole piece, or feel free check out some of my other pieces here:

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#51 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
May 27 2013, 03:48PM
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DSF wrote:

Including 18 players who aren't playing in the NHL doesn't help much.

Yes, the Oilers could have some size on the way and that will certainly help sometime in the future.

Not so much in the next year or two or three.

http://mirtle.blogspot.ca/2013/01/2013-nhl-teams-by-weight-height-and-age.html

Oilers are heavier and taller than the Hawks and the Wings.

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#52 The Beaker
May 27 2013, 04:02PM
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DSF wrote:

Generally. I agree.

There are smaller players who play big. Dave Bolland, Cal Clutterbuck and Jordan Tootoo come to mind but setting up Dustin Penner as a straw man doesn't further your argument.

How do you think Hopkins and Gagner would fare in a 7 game series where they were fed a steady diet of Kopitar, Carter, Stoll and Nolan?

Which is why I said we need to acquire players. I never said "we have a bunch of these players and therefor we will win the world"

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#53 Racki
May 27 2013, 04:05PM
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The argument that guys have to be 6'4 220lbs nowadays is silly, as there are plenty of smaller players out there proving otherwise (Datsyuk and Zetterberg, St. Louis, Kane, Conacher - to a lesser extent now, Brendan Gallagher, Zach Parise, Cammalleri, Ribeiro -built like a twig-, Claude Giroux, Matt Duchene.. I can keep going). This isn't 1980 anymore, Don Cherry. The only thing that needs to be big these days is your heart.

That said, it wouldn't hurt for our team to add some size though, but Jordan Eberle, Nuge (mentioned because he's a twig), and Yakupov will all be dominant players in spite of their lack of size. Good players find a way no matter what their short comings are (pardon the pun).

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#54 Will
May 27 2013, 04:14PM
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Even against large teams, the Oilers have shown time and again they can beat anyone in the NHL. They just need to play that way a bit more constantly. Having said that, upgrading on size and grit is something I think we all agree would help. And it sounds like our GM echos that, so why this is even a discussion is strange since that is likely what we are going out to get this summer.

I still have visions of that game against St. Louis where the Oilers played like a completely different team. That was their most physical game, and surprise surprise they beat a 'superior' team in every way.

Considering our top line players have no issue against size according to all advanced and non advanced stats out there, I think Mac T will have an easier job finding ways the next three lines can be effective against size. Whether that means adding size, someone who can win face-offs, or as he says turn us into a puck possession team, which starts at the back end and being able to retrieve the puck, remains to be seen.

Obviously a top 2 defender is in order, but as long as that guy can be sound defensively and can move a puck to the guys on the top two lines, that is a huge advantage as we play such a good counter attack game. After that, a LW with size and a 2nd line larger 2 way centre are not the most impossible pieces to acquire.

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#55 T__Bone88
May 27 2013, 04:20PM
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Racki wrote:

The argument that guys have to be 6'4 220lbs nowadays is silly, as there are plenty of smaller players out there proving otherwise (Datsyuk and Zetterberg, St. Louis, Kane, Conacher - to a lesser extent now, Brendan Gallagher, Zach Parise, Cammalleri, Ribeiro -built like a twig-, Claude Giroux, Matt Duchene.. I can keep going). This isn't 1980 anymore, Don Cherry. The only thing that needs to be big these days is your heart.

That said, it wouldn't hurt for our team to add some size though, but Jordan Eberle, Nuge (mentioned because he's a twig), and Yakupov will all be dominant players in spite of their lack of size. Good players find a way no matter what their short comings are (pardon the pun).

Exactly. The top 4 of Yak, Hall, Ebs and Nuge is great going forward. Its just finding a balance of bigger bodies in that top 6 to compliment those players to open up space for them to do their thing. If circumstances were different I would keep a Gagner or Hemsky but its just a matter of having too much of the same type player.

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#56 DSF
May 27 2013, 04:22PM
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Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy! wrote:

http://mirtle.blogspot.ca/2013/01/2013-nhl-teams-by-weight-height-and-age.html

Oilers are heavier and taller than the Hawks and the Wings.

Mirtle's article was written In early January.

He would have included:

Andy Sutton - 6'6" 245

Ryan Whitney - 6'4" 209

Theo Peckham - 6'2" 246

Ben Eager - 6'2" 225

Darcy Hordichuck - 6'1" 215

Smithson and Fistric helps out a bit but that's a lot of beef going out the door and neither plays enough to be much of a factor.

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#57 Rama Lama
May 27 2013, 04:46PM
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Racki wrote:

The argument that guys have to be 6'4 220lbs nowadays is silly, as there are plenty of smaller players out there proving otherwise (Datsyuk and Zetterberg, St. Louis, Kane, Conacher - to a lesser extent now, Brendan Gallagher, Zach Parise, Cammalleri, Ribeiro -built like a twig-, Claude Giroux, Matt Duchene.. I can keep going). This isn't 1980 anymore, Don Cherry. The only thing that needs to be big these days is your heart.

That said, it wouldn't hurt for our team to add some size though, but Jordan Eberle, Nuge (mentioned because he's a twig), and Yakupov will all be dominant players in spite of their lack of size. Good players find a way no matter what their short comings are (pardon the pun).

Would you agree that skill is TOTALLY separate from size?? If you agree with this concept in general......then why not acquire size with skill?

To me that is the million dollar question. Some teams ( very smart teams) will more readily draft talent that has both skill and size.

We need to develop a drafting metric that incorporates more intangibles ( attitude, aggression, physicality ) so we are not constantly talking about how small our hobbits are.

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#58 Racki
May 27 2013, 04:53PM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Would you agree that skill is TOTALLY separate from size?? If you agree with this concept in general......then why not acquire size with skill?

To me that is the million dollar question. Some teams ( very smart teams) will more readily draft talent that has both skill and size.

We need to develop a drafting metric that incorporates more intangibles ( attitude, aggression, physicality ) so we are not constantly talking about how small our hobbits are.

"then why not acquire size with skill?"

The reason why is pretty simple... because size with skill is VERY hard to come by....

So generally it comes down to this... do you acquire the guy with great NHL size with noticeably less talent, or do you take that 5'11, 180lb guy that has all world skill and hope he can overcome his size concerns? That's really the debate because I don't think anyone in their right mind would take the 5'11 180lb guy IF the other guy that is 6'4, 220lbs has EQUAL skill. I don't think I have to remind anyone about our previous penchant for drafting coke machines over small skill players and having that backfire on us badly.

Again, it isn't very easy to come by those kinds of players (skilled size). Teams covet them... teams hang on to them.. they go highest in the draft.

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#59 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 04:59PM
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The future is in the hands of these kids. The Oilers are only half way to having what one would consider a nucleus (top 7 forwards, top 3 D and a goaltender). Till this is filled out and these kids start fighting their own battles, it's infinibuild for as far as the eye can see.

Selling the farm (offering up anyone not bolted to the floor, along with draft picks) is in the Oilers best interests. They probably have a shot at their second/first line center in Barkov if they want it.

Watch an aggressive GM this summer, work his tail off to put something together and land both MacKinnon and Drouin. One motivated buyer is all it takes. Watch Steve Yzerman or Dale Tallon do what the Oilers only dreamed they could do these last three yrs. Fark you Lowe.

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#60 madjam
May 27 2013, 05:05PM
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Back to blog #24 : Our focus has to be defence with no one over 50% in control in offensive zone . Only Petry (49.7) , J.Schultz and Whitney (41.7)(who sounds like we are not taking back) is close to acceptable . The rest of defence is under 26.00 % . You can't win with a defence like that, while getting rid of one of your top 3 . Horcoff and Hemsky are still high in puck possession game on our team , yet will we go ahead with them ? Gagner is on the bubble here. Paajarvi is close to acceptable , but rest of squad needs a lot of upgrading if we hope to be a puck possession team.

So what does that leave us for a puck possession team in top order ? Hall , Hemsky ,Hopkins ,Horcoff ,Yakupov ,Eberle and Gagner on the bubble . Paajarvi close . Defence Petry , J.Schultz and Whitney provide the only limited offence . With that bad a numbers on defence and Whitney gone we probably need up to six that can be over 40 % efficient in offensive zone , Yes Smid is another low one .

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#61 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
May 27 2013, 05:14PM
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DSF wrote:

Mirtle's article was written In early January.

He would have included:

Andy Sutton - 6'6" 245

Ryan Whitney - 6'4" 209

Theo Peckham - 6'2" 246

Ben Eager - 6'2" 225

Darcy Hordichuck - 6'1" 215

Smithson and Fistric helps out a bit but that's a lot of beef going out the door and neither plays enough to be much of a factor.

Did you see the part about "Based on data from teams' opening rosters on Jan. 18"? It may be too inconvenient for your "argument".

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#62 OilersBrass
May 27 2013, 05:22PM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Would you agree that skill is TOTALLY separate from size?? If you agree with this concept in general......then why not acquire size with skill?

To me that is the million dollar question. Some teams ( very smart teams) will more readily draft talent that has both skill and size.

We need to develop a drafting metric that incorporates more intangibles ( attitude, aggression, physicality ) so we are not constantly talking about how small our hobbits are.

All these kids need to do is put on some weight (preferably between 190-200) and they'll be fine. You guys gotta remember they're still growing though so it's not easy for some of them to get bigger.

You don't need to be a massive player to be aggressive, perfect example is Dustin Brown. He's only 6 foot but he's over 200 pounds and knows how to throw his weight around. He destroys people.

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#63 master of my domain
May 27 2013, 05:25PM
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it's really a shame what is happening to the comments section of this site. now I don't post often, but I always read the articles and used to love reading through all of the comments.

in the past if the comments were in the 2nd page it would be great discussion with a few witty comments in there to make me laugh. now anytime it hits 2 pages or more, I know it's just DSF trolling and everyone getting their panties in a knot responding.

too bad, guess I'll just stick to the articles.

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#64 OilersBrass
May 27 2013, 05:26PM
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master of my domain wrote:

it's really a shame what is happening to the comments section of this site. now I don't post often, but I always read the articles and used to love reading through all of the comments.

in the past if the comments were in the 2nd page it would be great discussion with a few witty comments in there to make me laugh. now anytime it hits 2 pages or more, I know it's just DSF trolling and everyone getting their panties in a knot responding.

too bad, guess I'll just stick to the articles.

Don't forget about all of the ridiculous trade requests!

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#65 Oiler Al
May 27 2013, 05:46PM
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DSF wrote:

Including 18 players who aren't playing in the NHL doesn't help much.

Yes, the Oilers could have some size on the way and that will certainly help sometime in the future.

Not so much in the next year or two or three.

DSF. most times I think your a squirrel short a few nuts, but on this one you are dead on! Size and skill combine will almost always beat the smaller/skill team, espeically in the play off run when you have to win 16 games with tons of travel in a short period of time.

A lot of the players Mabell lists, will only see the NHL in their dreams..

SMid is OK for blocking shots, but his bear hugs are just that bear hugs. I ave never seem him hit to hurt so to speak, nor memory of Petry making a thudering hit.

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#66 voom04
May 27 2013, 05:46PM
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New-Age, have U been talking to Craig?

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#67 DSF
May 27 2013, 05:48PM
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Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy! wrote:

Did you see the part about "Based on data from teams' opening rosters on Jan. 18"? It may be too inconvenient for your "argument".

Whitney, Peckham and Eager would have been included.

Not sure about Hordichuk or Sutton.

Should be interesting to see how it looks this fall.

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#68 michael
May 27 2013, 05:55PM
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We are what we are. And our top 6 is what it is. I would rather lose with style than win ugly.

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#69 DSF
May 27 2013, 06:03PM
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Oiler Al wrote:

DSF. most times I think your a squirrel short a few nuts, but on this one you are dead on! Size and skill combine will almost always beat the smaller/skill team, espeically in the play off run when you have to win 16 games with tons of travel in a short period of time.

A lot of the players Mabell lists, will only see the NHL in their dreams..

SMid is OK for blocking shots, but his bear hugs are just that bear hugs. I ave never seem him hit to hurt so to speak, nor memory of Petry making a thudering hit.

Right on all counts except for the nuts part.

All Smid's nasty is face washing after the whistle and, like you, I don't recall ONE Petry hit from this past season. But I sure do remember Abdelkader, Kronwall and Ericsson dishing out a few.

Brian Bickell is no wallflower either.

No accident that the teams left in the playoffs are the Big Bad Bruins, The Towering Sharks, The LA Ominous Thunder and one of the "skilled" "puck possession" teams.

In a playoff series, big skilled players pound on the skill guys and wear them down (see Daniel and Henrik for reference) rendering them less effective.

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#70 Taylor Gang
May 27 2013, 07:27PM
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DSF wrote:

Right on all counts except for the nuts part.

All Smid's nasty is face washing after the whistle and, like you, I don't recall ONE Petry hit from this past season. But I sure do remember Abdelkader, Kronwall and Ericsson dishing out a few.

Brian Bickell is no wallflower either.

No accident that the teams left in the playoffs are the Big Bad Bruins, The Towering Sharks, The LA Ominous Thunder and one of the "skilled" "puck possession" teams.

In a playoff series, big skilled players pound on the skill guys and wear them down (see Daniel and Henrik for reference) rendering them less effective.

OBVIOUSLY size with skill is better than just skill, why do you think Lucic is praised all the time?

If you think that's so great, why don't you tell me a player the Oilers should trade for and what we'd have to give up to get him

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#71 DSF
May 27 2013, 08:14PM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

OBVIOUSLY size with skill is better than just skill, why do you think Lucic is praised all the time?

If you think that's so great, why don't you tell me a player the Oilers should trade for and what we'd have to give up to get him

I would target Brian Bickell.

He's UFA so no trade required.

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#72 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 08:16PM
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Taylor Gang wrote:

OBVIOUSLY size with skill is better than just skill, why do you think Lucic is praised all the time?

If you think that's so great, why don't you tell me a player the Oilers should trade for and what we'd have to give up to get him

That's not how it works here. It's up to you to make that suggestion, and then DSF will tell you why you're off your rocker.

Keep in mind, the Oilers need two, 20 min a night players, not any 5-10 min a night guys. So, choose wisely there Hallsy.

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#73 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 08:20PM
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DSF wrote:

I would target Brian Bickell.

He's UFA so no trade required.

Could Peckham be next years Bickell, likely for half of what Bickell will get this summer?

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#74 DSF
May 27 2013, 08:23PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Could Peckham be next years Bickell, likely for half of what Bickell will get this summer?

Depends on Weight Watchers ® I would think.

But, seriously, I doubt Peckham even knows where the opposition net is.

He might be okay as a 5 minute a night 4th line guy but why use Peckham when you can sign someone better for peanuts?

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#75 madjam
May 27 2013, 08:29PM
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T.Myers and R. Miller from Buffalo be a target ? Myers 5.5 cap -six years , but salary @ 6,5,5,4,3.5 ,3M. Miller 1 year 6.5M .Zidlicky -1 year @4.0M .

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#76 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 08:31PM
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@DSF

At 541.000 per, I doubt Bickell knew where the net was at that price. Figure it's worth the try, what else is there to do with him before he walks for zippo.

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#77 DSF
May 27 2013, 08:41PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

At 541.000 per, I doubt Bickell knew where the net was at that price. Figure it's worth the try, what else is there to do with him before he walks for zippo.

Flush?

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#78 DSF
May 27 2013, 08:42PM
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madjam wrote:

T.Myers and R. Miller from Buffalo be a target ? Myers 5.5 cap -six years , but salary @ 6,5,5,4,3.5 ,3M. Miller 1 year 6.5M .Zidlicky -1 year @4.0M .

Tyler Myers is an intriguing idea but I expect Buffalo would want one of the Fab 5 in return.

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#79 DSF
May 27 2013, 08:58PM
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A good article on Bickell who scored his 5th goal of the playoffs tonight:

http://insider.espn.go.com/nhl/blog/_/name/custance_craig/id/9315262/2013-nhl-playoffs-playoff-performance-ups-bryan-bickell-offseason-price-tag

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#80 madjam
May 27 2013, 09:04PM
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DSF wrote:

Tyler Myers is an intriguing idea but I expect Buffalo would want one of the Fab 5 in return.

I don't believe it would and I doubt we would do that either . Intriguing possibilities with Buffalo having the 8th and 16th pick ,however .

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#82 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 09:30PM
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Oilers have only 11.5 in cap space available, and need 9 players to shore up the roster next season. This tells us a lot about the quality of these replacements coming in. Lets see, 5 for Gagner, 1 for Paajarvi, leaves 5.5 with 7 more to go.

Unless they double that and rid themselves of 83, 10 and 89, there will be no significant changes to next yrs team. Losing culture lingers for atleast on more year.

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#83 madjam
May 27 2013, 09:53PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Oilers have only 11.5 in cap space available, and need 9 players to shore up the roster next season. This tells us a lot about the quality of these replacements coming in. Lets see, 5 for Gagner, 1 for Paajarvi, leaves 5.5 with 7 more to go.

Unless they double that and rid themselves of 83, 10 and 89, there will be no significant changes to next yrs team. Losing culture lingers for atleast on more year.

As an example only : B.Sutter , C.Neil , J.Boll or D. Carcillo would take up less than 6.0 M or about 7.0M for the four of them . . I doubt Gagner will get above 4M for starters . Paajarvi will be closer to 2.0M I suspect . We'd still have room for a marque player or two if Gagner and Paajarvi are in play . .

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#84 Josh Oiler
May 27 2013, 09:54PM
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The Blackhawks won the cup with Teows and Kane still in their entry level deals. Hall and Eberle are entering their second contract and still haven't made the playoffs. Btw I think Hall an Eberle are equally as good if not better than the tandem if Teows an Kane. But the Hawks had BIG BUFF when they won.

Maybe our problem is coaching???

Lindy Ruff is still available. Although he is talking to the Dallas Stars.

What are the Oil Brass waiting for??? Lindy will bench your a$$ if you don't play to expectations.

THAT'S WHAT THESE KIDS NEED! A Ken Hitchcock Lindy Ruff hard nosed in your face coach!

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#85 Josh Oiler
May 27 2013, 09:57PM
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Also fire Kelly Buchberger, Steve Smith, Ralph Kreuger and their entire coaching staff.

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#86 The Beaker
May 27 2013, 09:59PM
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@Josh Oiler

Go away.

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#87 Word Ta Big Berd
May 27 2013, 10:09PM
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DSF wrote:

Tyler Myers is an intriguing idea but I expect Buffalo would want one of the Fab 5 in return.

In terms of fairness, in my opinion because of Myers' decline in play (albeit he has had injuries):

Jordan Eberle and both seconds for Tyler Myers and the 8th

Allows us to possibly trade up for Barkov or draft 2 of Monahan, Lindholm, Nurse, Ristolainen.

Or.

Use both the 7th and 8th with Gagner to get a REAL good centre, such as a Tyler Seguin. Entertain the use of Seguin in this scenario as Boston may be able to use Gagner since they have a better defensive team with more size to overcome Gagner's shortfalls.

Sign Bickell and Horton (pipe dream)

Hall Seguin Yakupov (fastest line in hockey)? Bickell Nuge Horton Paajarvi Horcoff Jones Brown Lander Don't care

Myers Schultz Jr Petry Smid Schultz UFA signing

Klefbom and Marincin perhaps being 1-2 years away can slowly replace that bottom pairing. Then into the top 4 and have Petry and Smid be the bottom pairing.

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#88 Walter Sobchak
May 27 2013, 10:10PM
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Well.

Mac-T " we need to be a puck possession skilled team"...............

Doesn't that mean we actually have to be in possession of the puck!

Doesn't that mean winning face offs.

Being able to break the cycle in the defensive zone.

Having possession coming into the opposition zone

What I take out of that conversation.

The Oilers need to get bigger down the middle.

The Oilers need skilled two way centers who can win draws, regain possession, help down low and push the play in the right direction.

The Oilers need better skilled defense who can break a cycle, gain possession and move the puck quickly.

Can obtain one from draft if they move up.

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#89 Josh Oiler
May 27 2013, 10:15PM
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The Beaker wrote:

Go away.

What are you Ralph Kreuger son. If so both you and you dad need to take a hike. Maybe back to Switzerland where my dog can be a head coach of the National team there

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#90 Hisam Saleh
May 27 2013, 10:19PM
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Josh Oiler wrote:

What are you Ralph Kreuger son. If so both you and you dad need to take a hike. Maybe back to Switzerland where my dog can be a head coach of the National team there

Haha.. Good one Josh.. You told him..

It's soo true. Got a mental image of a dog coaching the Swiss National Team. Kreugers son "the Beaker" must be so embarrassed!

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#91 Josh Oiler
May 27 2013, 10:22PM
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@TheBeaker

What kind of name is the Beaker anyway. With a photo of a Beaker. Weirdo? Just like his dad Ralph. Take your mountain bike and hit the road! Don't let the door hit you a$$ on the way outta town loser.

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#92 Harlie
May 27 2013, 10:29PM
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http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z8u2RNXknbQ

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#93 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
May 27 2013, 10:32PM
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In need of help.

My spaceship crashed, and I need money for parts to get back home.

Are Transformers required to carry Life, or automobile insurance?

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#94 Rogg DJ
May 27 2013, 10:38PM
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@Josh Oiler

Josh you are one of the greatest if not the greatest and smartest underground hockey's minds on the planet..

What are your thoughts on Mike Brown?

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#95 Josh Oiler
May 27 2013, 10:41PM
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Rogg DJ wrote:

@Josh Oiler

Josh you are one of the greatest if not the greatest and smartest underground hockey's minds on the planet..

What are your thoughts on Mike Brown?

Thanks Rogg,

Well, Mike Brown is one of the best things to happens to Edmonton since they changed Klondike Days to Capital Ex!

The guy plays hard and is tough as nails willing to fight anyone anytime anywhere. Irreplaceable!

Can't believe we got him for only a 4th rounder? Dave Nonis should have been fired.

Give me another 22 Mike Browns and we have a team!

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#96 Alsker
May 27 2013, 10:50PM
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Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

Oilers have only 11.5 in cap space available, and need 9 players to shore up the roster next season. This tells us a lot about the quality of these replacements coming in. Lets see, 5 for Gagner, 1 for Paajarvi, leaves 5.5 with 7 more to go.

Unless they double that and rid themselves of 83, 10 and 89, there will be no significant changes to next yrs team. Losing culture lingers for atleast on more year.

That about sums it up...though only 2/3 of your solution are required depending on return. Now if Couture or Ott or both are involved than by all means.

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#97 WhattaMike
May 27 2013, 10:55PM
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Krueger was not the problem. He wasnt the ones losing faceoffs, or the ones not coming back defensively, etc, etc.

Yeah his coaching this year wasnt topnotch but look at this team and tell me now....would Hitchcock, Ruff, Vigneault, etc, have gotten this years Oiler team into the playoffs?

The special teams were each upper league good, even tho the PP slowed down by the end. I would say at the least that we need one more coach.

Anyways, this team needs skill and size and toughness/meanness no matter what. Every blogger or fan or media guy all get to this fact every single day.

Realistically....Hemsky, Horcoff, Belanger, Eager all get traded or let go and this opens up more than enough cap space for the next yr going forward.

Khabby, Whitney are gone, Sourays contract is finally over, Petrell, Jones, are probably gone and this, again opens up cap space.

I say the Oil go to bat and realistically/fiscally try to put the following mock lineup together:

(Hall - RNH - Bickell) (Stalberg - Barkov/Monahan/Lindholm - Yakupov) (R. Smyth - K. Chipchura - MPS) (R. Jones - Lander - Hartikainen)

Brown/McGrattan = extras

(Klefbom - Mark Streit) (Alzner - J. Schultz) (Smid - Petry)

Fedun/Potter as extras

Mike Smith/Khudobin and Dubnyk for goaltending

Thats a great up[grade with talent and skill and toughness ready to be inserted anytime

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#98 WhattaMike
May 27 2013, 10:58PM
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Big error as I forgot to put Eberle in the lineup so now, if Bickell is not picked up then Stalberg is good enough. BTW, Horton may be young and good but those concussion issues stand out.

The following should have been:

Hall - RNH - Eberle) (Bickell/Stalberg - Barkov/Monahan/Lindholm - Yakupov) (R. Smyth - K. Chipchura - MPS) (R. Jones - Lander - Hartikainen)

Brown/McGrattan = extras

Sorry

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#99 OilClog
May 27 2013, 10:59PM
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DSF wrote:

Right on all counts except for the nuts part.

All Smid's nasty is face washing after the whistle and, like you, I don't recall ONE Petry hit from this past season. But I sure do remember Abdelkader, Kronwall and Ericsson dishing out a few.

Brian Bickell is no wallflower either.

No accident that the teams left in the playoffs are the Big Bad Bruins, The Towering Sharks, The LA Ominous Thunder and one of the "skilled" "puck possession" teams.

In a playoff series, big skilled players pound on the skill guys and wear them down (see Daniel and Henrik for reference) rendering them less effective.

Yet when the Oilers finally do ice a playoff team DSF, our marquee guy won't be a Sedin. It's a Hall, and he already runs them over as well.

We have no idea what these young guys playoff character will be, one thing is for certain...They already have more jam then the Sedins, so I would figure they will handle themselves just fine.

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#100 Hisam Saleh
May 27 2013, 11:03PM
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@Josh Oiler

Josh, I wish you were on the TSN panel instead of Darren Pang of that washed up Aaron Ward!

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