CALM BEFORE THE STORM

Jason Gregor
June 28 2013 10:50AM

For the first time since 2006 the NHL draft will be a one day event. It starts at 1 p.m. MST on Sunday and is scheduled to last eight hours. Edmonton currently has the #7, #37, #56 (from Anaheim), #128, #158 and #188. They traded their 3rd rounder (Fistric) to Dallas and 4th rounder to Florida (Smithson).

This week has already had many story lines, and we can expect to many more before Sunday evening. The Oilers were in the news again this morning when Dallas Eakins announced his coaching staff.

As Robin Brownlee accurately predicted on June 09th, Keith Acton is the new associate head coach. Acton played 72 games with the Oilers in 1988 and 1989, but this hire doesn't fall under the heading "the old boys club." Acton has been an NHL assistant or associate coach for 16 seasons, four with the Flyers, two with the Rangers, nine with the Maple Leafs and last year in Columbus.

He and Eakins worked together for two years in Toronto, and they've been close ever since. Eakins wanted a coach with NHL experience and someone he is familiar with, and Acton is that guy. I believe an assistant coach is only as good as the head coach allows him to be. Some head coaches like to control everything, others like to delegate. I'm not certain which one Eakins is at this point.

Bringing back both Steve Smith and Kelly Buchberger doesn't look good for the organization. Essentially they are saying only the head coach has been the issue the past four seasons. Buchberger will work under his 5th head coach in six seasons. It is rare for any assistant coach to stay employed while the head coach continually gets the axe.

How can you constantly blame the head coach for the failures of the team, while simultaneously stating the assistants are doing a great job? Unless the organization feels the players were the problem, retaining both assistant coaches is odd. I sense that that Daryl Katz has had a say on Buchberger's involvement with the team, and that Eakins and his predecessors didn't have free reign in who they hired.

The optics aren't great, but Eakins did get to hire the guy he really wanted. Eakins admitted he spoke to Paul Maurice, but decided that Maurice was better suited as a head coach. It is difficult for most strong-willed head coaches to become an assistant and not have the final say.

Expect Acton and Smith to be on the bench with Eakins most of the season.

BIG BUCK BUYOUTS

Neuvirth Saves on Lightning Breakaway

 Tampa Bay surprised many when they bought out Vincent Lecavalier yesterday for a measly $32.67 million.

They bolts will pay him $4.76 million for the next two seasons, $3.76 million in 2015/2016 and then $1.76 million for the next 11 seasons.

Lecavalier is 33 and he's averaged .80 points per game the past three seasons. He's scored 135 points in his last 168 games. I suspect he'll be highly motivated on his new team due to new teammates, new surroundings and he'll want to prove he can still play.

Despite his age he is now the most attractive centre in a weak free agent class, and because of his size, skill and Stanley Cup experience I expect he will get at least a three-year deal worth $14-$16 million.

He's the type of centre the Oilers need, but don't expect him him in Edmonton. He'll want to go to a playoff contender. The Habs make sense for many reasons, but so do many other teams. The Leafs have cap space and are desperate for a centre. The Canucks would like him, but they'd need to shed some salary (Luongo). The Stars have cap space, an owner who will spend money and a GM who loves veterans.

Lecavalier is allowed to talk to teams immediately, but he can't officially sign with a team until July 5th, and I'm sure he and his agent will get a lot of calls.

Bryzgalov's Bottle

The Flyers said goodbye to Ilya Bryzgalov after only two seasons. He essentially made $39 million in two seasons with the Flyers, after they bought him for $23 million. The Flyers will pay him $1.64 million for the next 14 seasons, but Bryzgalov will likely get a two or three-year deal from someone.

Right now he's a low-end #1 goalie. In three of his last four seasons he's had good numbers, but this past year he had a woeful .900 SV% and a 2.79 GAA. He's a great interview and a fun guy, but teams will be leery of his aloof attitude.

Not many teams are looking for a #1 goalie, but I could see him returning to Phoenix (Seattle/Quebec) if they don't re-sign Mike Smith. I could see him making $3 million+ on his new deal.

The Oilers need to sign two goalies, and if they don't land Anton Khudobin or another younger UFA, they might have to look at Bryzgalov, but I don't see him being a fit in Edmonton.

Komisarek and Ovechkin, 8 + 8

The Leafs announced they will buy out Mike Komisarek, but they haven't officially done it yet. The Leafs have to pay him $1.16 million for the next two seasons. He'll get a new deal, but I don't see it being longer than two years, and most likely a one-year pact for around $1.3-$1.5 million.

Komisarek is only 31 years old, and while his footspeed is an issue teams are always looking for experienced defenders. The Oilers don't need another 3rd pairing D-man.

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Marc Bergevin had to use his 2nd buyout on a player that he didn't acquire. The Habs were so upset with Kaberle that they didn't want us to use a picture of him in a Habs jersey. They bought him out for $3 million and will pay him $1.5 million for the next two seasons.

Kaberle is 35, and while he is a good puck mover, there is little else about his game that scouts like at this point. Unless a GM sees something I don't, I'd be very surprised to see him get a new contract.

Briere

The Flyers bought out Daniel Briere for ONLY $3.33 million, and considering his cap hit was $6.5 million it made sense. He'll receive $833,333 from the Flyers for the next four seasons. Briere can still produce, especially on the PP, and he'll likely land a two-year pact around four or five million dollars.

The Oilers shouldn't have any interest in Briere, he isn't the type of player Craig MacTavish needs at this point.

Rostislav Olesz was acquired by the Hawks just so they could get rid of Brian Campbell and his $7.14 million cap hit. Olesz played only six games with the Hawks the past two seasons, despite being paid $7.4 million during that time. The Hawks bought him out of the final year of his deal ($4.25 million), and they will pay him $1.41 mill for the next two seasons.

Essentially, the Hawks paid him $10.2 million to play six NHL games. Yikes.

Olesz is only 27 years old. He had 19 points in 14 AHL games this year and 41 points in 50 games last season. Some GM might take a chance on him and sign him to a one-year, two-way contract, but he seems destined to play in Europe.

No chance the Oilers look at him.

The Hawks also bought Steve Montador from the final two years of his deal. He was owed $4.1 million, but he had a cap hit of $2.75 mill and the Hawks need cap space so they will pay him $683,333 for the next four seasons.

Montador was one of Stan Bowman's rare mistakes. They signed him to a four-year, $11 million deal in the summer of 2011, but he only played 52 games for the Hawks. Montador's footspeed is a major concern, and if he does get a contract it will be a one-year deal for $1 million or less. If Cam Barker can get a new contract anything is possible.

QUICK HITS

  • Interesting to note that so far the only western conference team to make a buyout was Chicago. The Hawks (2), Flyers (2), Canadiens (2), Leafs (1 pending), Rangers (1) and Tampa (1) are the only teams who have used their compliance buyouts. I expect some teams to use some between the draft and the July 4th deadline. If the Oilers can't trade Eric Belanger, there is a very good chance they will buy him out.
     
  • ESPN reported yesterday that Kris Letang turned down an eight year deal worth around $56 million. Does his agent really believe he can get $8 million/year on the open market? If he can then the GMs clearly haven't learned any fiscal restraint. I think Letang is a very good D-man, he's a legit top-pairing defender, but I'd be leery of paying him that much. I know most GMs will pay him based on the salary cap going up, but it is still a risky venture.
     
  • Jonathon Willis has a good piece on why he'd stay away from Dave Bolland. He brought up some great points, about potentially over paying for him. Those are valid concerns, as is the fact he is only one-year away from being a UFA. I like Bolland's game, and I wouldn't be worried about him rebounding after a unproductive 2013 regular seasons, but there is a risk in acquiring him. The one difference between him and Pominville is that Pominville had two more years left on his contract. Bolland only has one year before he's a UFA. If the Oilers could get permission to talk extension before making the trade, then I'd consider it.
     
  • Congratulations to Anthony Bennett and his family. Bennett was the first Canadian drafted #1 overall in the NBA draft last night. The Cleveland Cavaliers surprised everyone when they took the UNLV freshman, but they clearly like Canadians. They took Tristan Thompson 4th overall in 2011. Canada could have the #1 pick next year as well. Andrew Wiggins is considered the best prospect since Kevin Durant. It is great to see Canada producing top quality basketball players.
     
  • The NLL relocated the Washington (Everett) Stealth to Vancouver (Langley) yesterday. This is good news for lacrosse fans, especially if you like watching it on TV. You can expect more lacrosse games on TV next year, now that there is a 4th Canadian team in the league. Look for  Sportsnet/Score to broadcast more games.
     
  • It looks like the NHL will finally pull the plug on the Phoenix experiment. Yesterday Gary Bettman said Glendale has until July 2nd to reach an agreement or the Coyotes will be done. I hope the mayor of Glendale and the councillors recognize this is a bad deal and walk away. I feel for the diehard Coyote fans, but the reality is hockey will never be financially viable in Phoenix. Seattle and Quebec seem the most likely relocation destinations, but like I wrote earlier, I'd love to see a dispersal draft. 

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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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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I hope Mac rules the draft with an iron FIST!

"Give me all your tangible assets!"

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#2 OilersBrass
June 28 2013, 11:01AM
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https://twitter.com/NHLbyMatty/statuses/350460876568002560

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#3 MattL
June 28 2013, 11:02AM
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"Buchberger will work under his 5th head coach in six seasons. It is rare for any assistant coach to stay employed while the head coach continually gets the axe."

Being friends with the owner apparently doesn't hurt, which I think you were hinting at.

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#4 Quicksilver ballet
June 28 2013, 11:02AM
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If there is a dispersal draft. Can the Oilers trade their selection and move down?

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#5 bazmagoo
June 28 2013, 11:06AM
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@Quicksilver ballet

Well theoretically they could probably do anything they want, considering it's a theoretical dispersal draft.

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#6 RomZ
June 28 2013, 11:06AM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

If there is a dispersal draft. Can the Oilers trade their selection and move down?

Who would you take out of the phoenix roster?

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#7 Rick
June 28 2013, 11:11AM
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At 1-1.5 mil I would totally take a run at Komisarek. Foot speed aside he possess a lot of what the Oilers are missing. Use him in the bottom pair where he is best suited right now and let him prove he is motivated to be a NHLer again.

Similar reclamation stories have been written over and over with decent success. It seems like a reasonably low risk move especially if Peckham will be given his walking papers and worse yet a guy like Potter is being slotted in still. Low risk high reward given the money suggested.

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#8 TeeVee
June 28 2013, 11:12AM
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OEL or Yandle

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#9 T__Bone88
June 28 2013, 11:15AM
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Do you think GM's will find a loop hole for retaining salary by finding a third team to retain salary, with that third team getting picks in return? Out of the current buyout players available I would like to see MacT try to be in the running for Lecavalier at a 3-4 year deal. Bryzgalov I would take a risk on as just a back-up/1B starter on a 1 or 2 year deal, don't have him as your number 1 goalie over Dubnyk.

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#10 Hall Awaits
June 28 2013, 11:16AM
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I'm a bit of a daydreamer but I would be happy to go get Kris Letang if an extension was in place. I'd also be willing to move Petry, 7th + for him.

We (fans) always complain about finding a top pairing defender. Well, here he is... Go get the guy!!

@Jason, Any thoughts on Rich Peverley for the third line centre? Apparently he's available.

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#11 Quicksilver ballet
June 28 2013, 11:17AM
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RomZ wrote:

Who would you take out of the phoenix roster?

If The Panthers take Seth Jones this coming weekend (which is a possibility) they'll have an embarrassing riches of talent on their back end. Having the first selection in the dispersal draft lands them Ekman-Larsson.

Could be an opportunity to plunder the Panthers for a dman, Gudbranson? Can the Oilers deal their first in 2014 entry draft for the first selection in that dispersal draft*? Like most NHL rosters, anything out side of a top 10 selections from that roster would be suspect. Best grab from their prospects whom may be a year or two away.

* not sure if picks in a dispersal draft can be traded. Hypothetically speaking of course.

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#12 Bucknuck
June 28 2013, 11:27AM
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I'm not concerned that they kept Steve Smith and Buchberger. MacTavish was pretty transparent about the coaching question, stating that the problem isn't coaching. He just wanted 'his' guy in. Some continuity for the players after having a new coach every bloody year for the last six years isn't such a bad thing IMO.

Over the year if Eakins changes his mind then we'll see new faces in 2014-2015. I don't think it's going to be a problem.

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#13 Quicksilver ballet
June 28 2013, 11:31AM
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Break up the Panthers!

Could have Drouin and OEL added to that roster by the fall.

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#14 judgedrude
June 28 2013, 11:31AM
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"the reality is hockey will never be financially viable in Phoenix"

I don't know if Phoenix is the problem as much as being in Glendale. I had read some time back that the Coyotes had a better fan base when they were in Scottsdale. When they moved to Glendale for the new arena, many fans abandoned the team.

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#15 Truth
June 28 2013, 11:33AM
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I selfishly hope that Glendale gets their stuff together and the Coyotes stay in Phoenix. Nothing beats a great cheap round of golf in the morning and a cheap NHL game in the evening. A few years ago I caught the HNIC Oilers-Coyotes game down there, $40/ticket (not box office)center ice row 15, $1.00 beers all night. Not a joke.

I would love to see the Oil sign Vinny but can't see him wanting to play in Edmonton. I imagine he stays in the East, I'll guess Toronto, Montreal, or Philly.

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#16 Jeffff
June 28 2013, 11:33AM
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First bad move by Eakins. I was hoping for a fresh start , new eyes. I hope this will not be a pattern.

Looking for a common denominator for the worst team in the NHL since the lockout 2004. So hard to find

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#17 oliveoilers
June 28 2013, 11:41AM
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Bicepus Maximus - Peter, The Great. Potter, the Goat. wrote:

I hope Mac rules the draft with an iron FIST!

"Give me all your tangible assets!"

I believe that should read:

"All your tangible assets now are belong to us!"

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#18 oiler_head
June 28 2013, 11:41AM
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Other than the poor location of Glendale arena, its hard to believe that hockey can't be a success there.

I was down there this past Feb for the President's Day invitational minor hockey tournament. This was a huge tournament (son's team won their bracket). Minor hockey is huge there. I think that there are nine sheets of ice in really nice facilities (one place was the official Coyotes practice arena - really nice). I know nine sheets doesn't sound like much but this is in the desert. The Coyotes presence there, really grew hockey as a sport. I think there are two associations, an elite minor program and a HS program.

We also got a chance to see a game between the 'yotes and CBJ. The rink was full (kid's night) and the atmosphere was great outside the rink. My son even got a chance to play two games on the NHL ice. Nice facility.

It'll be a shame if it all dies if the Coyotes leave but hopefully this saga ends one way or another (maybe they'll come to Seattle, and I can drive from Portland to see the oilers!)

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#19 Truth
June 28 2013, 11:42AM
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In Eakins' press availability this morning he said that if he was to release Bucky and Smith he would immediately be looking for replacements exactly like them. You only need so many people to place pylons and blow the whistle. Eakins and Acton will have control of the bench. Smith will be telling the defencemen who's next out of the gate (according to the Eakins/Acton's strategy) and Bucky will be in the press box eating popcorn and taking mental notes of the game in case the video feed somehow doesn't record.

Edit: I also recall it being mentioned (by Rishaug, if I remember correctly) that Eakins had full authority to do what he wanted with the coaches. No management interference. If you believe that you can't blame the old boys club for keeping Bucky and Smith.

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#20 Smokey
June 28 2013, 11:44AM
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Rick wrote:

At 1-1.5 mil I would totally take a run at Komisarek. Foot speed aside he possess a lot of what the Oilers are missing. Use him in the bottom pair where he is best suited right now and let him prove he is motivated to be a NHLer again.

Similar reclamation stories have been written over and over with decent success. It seems like a reasonably low risk move especially if Peckham will be given his walking papers and worse yet a guy like Potter is being slotted in still. Low risk high reward given the money suggested.

Why sign Komisarek if we won't keep a similar player in Fistric. Frankly don't get not keeping Fistric in his current 7th defencemen role.

I for.one.want a quiet draft. The astronomical asking.prices for.Letang and Bolland make.me.hope wye.actually make it to the podium to get our pick. I'd do the 7th and MPS and a second for a signed Letang and a 2nd and conditional third for Bolland. Anything more.is robbery.

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#21 Manfly
June 28 2013, 11:44AM
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terrific article! what i'd like to see first and foremost, is the Canucks stop being so stubborn and greedy and just buy out Luongo and move on already! he would be in demand for sure, but there's a reason why other teams haven't jumped at this guy....his contract! secondly, i guess the old boy club at the top (Lowe, MacT) just don't want to see Smith or Bucky go. sad, with Acton now aboard, i think both should be gone and i feel for Eakins not having a say on who ALL of his assistants will be! pretty silly and classless to me.

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#22 Taylor Gang
June 28 2013, 11:51AM
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Jeffff wrote:

First bad move by Eakins. I was hoping for a fresh start , new eyes. I hope this will not be a pattern.

Looking for a common denominator for the worst team in the NHL since the lockout 2004. So hard to find

So what would have been a good move? Hire a coach with no experience?

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#23 JOE
June 28 2013, 11:59AM
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Wonder if Oilers go hard after Kris Letang

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#24 Will
June 28 2013, 12:01PM
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What I take from this is that there are a bunch of good players becoming available, none of which the Oilers should go after. Kind of reminds me of Tambillini. Unfortunately to get good talent you have to usually give up something decent. In Bolland's case, I think he is affordable, and we should be going after him.

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#25 mlcselli
June 28 2013, 12:11PM
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Just want to comment o a few things:

1) I heard on a radio program yesterday that Vinnie said he would not play on any Canadian team. 2)Letang is way to greedy especially with his injury issues. 3)Bucky still behind the bench--why. Hope it's just a one year contract. 4)All these guys being bought and only one might be a fit for the Oil--discouraging news for us. I can't imagine what the roster is going to look like in the Fall. 5) I have a feeling the other GMs are going to fleece MacT if we make any deals.

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#26 Zamboni Driver
June 28 2013, 12:16PM
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The saddest thing in the world is what's become of the Edmonton Oilers. And how absolutely stupid they think their fans are.

They want you to believe that Eakins had free reign to hire any Asst coach he wanted. ON THE ENTIRE PLANET.

And he came up with...

Kelly

Buchberger.

A "coach" who brought you last-last-second last-6th (or whatever) last - and whatever happened his first year - don't care to look it up. I know it sucked.

And people will believe it to be true. All Eakins.

It's gone from the sublime to the ridiculous.

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#27 Thinker
June 28 2013, 12:22PM
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Having been to several yotes games, I can say the problem has a lot to do with the arena's location. The city is stocked full of snowbirds, and the phoenix area is densely populated. The arena is such a pain to get to however, and talking to residents there location is a major detterant. It's like if rexall was out in beaumont.

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#28 JOE
June 28 2013, 12:26PM
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mlcselli wrote:

Just want to comment o a few things:

1) I heard on a radio program yesterday that Vinnie said he would not play on any Canadian team. 2)Letang is way to greedy especially with his injury issues. 3)Bucky still behind the bench--why. Hope it's just a one year contract. 4)All these guys being bought and only one might be a fit for the Oil--discouraging news for us. I can't imagine what the roster is going to look like in the Fall. 5) I have a feeling the other GMs are going to fleece MacT if we make any deals.

Letang is an elite level defenseman. He's a lock for the Canadian Olympic team.

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#29 freeze
June 28 2013, 12:27PM
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My boss has a place in PHX but he said he never goes to games because getting there for start times is a traffic nightmare. You'd think this sort of location issue would be identified during the planning phase.

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#30 Eddie Shore
June 28 2013, 12:28PM
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Love how everyone is ragging on Smith and Buchberger... Any of you ever had them as an assistant coach? Or ever interviewed them on their thoughts/philosophy on coaching? If not, how the hell can you be so sure they are such awful assistants? The voice of the staff has changed, who cares who shoots pucks and back slaps with the team before, during and after practice?

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#31 HugThePost
June 28 2013, 12:30PM
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Gregor, what part of the coaching did Smith and Buchberger do in previous years?

I agree with you, keeping them kind of stinks of nepotism. I realize that it is everywhere, but the Oilers are running a business and for paying customers to hear all of the management keep saying winning is their goal and then have their actions sometimes show that taking care of your buddies is right up there too really really stinks. I'm happy to see Acton join the team again, but there guys way more qualified than Bucky and Smith out there.

I agree with JW; I would stay away from Bolland. He has a past of injuries, comes at an all time high in terms of price, and has a lot of hard miles on him. We need to find the next Bolland.

Looks like slim pickings on the buyout list so far; MacT will have to get immediate help mostly through trades I think.

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#32 OilClog
June 28 2013, 12:36PM
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Vinny would make our roster as strong and capable as Montreal or Toronto.. Lets not forget we were as playoff team with 10gamea left.. Sure the Oilers were seriously flawed.. But even so.. They were in the mix.. Oilers have as much chance of being a contender for the next five years as any team mentioned.. Skill like this can only be held back for so long

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#33 Zamboni Driver
June 28 2013, 12:37PM
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@Eddie Shore

Kevie and Patty are delighted to read this.

Oh sorry..."K-Lowe", because I think it's cool that a Team President has a nickname.

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#34 Eddie Shore
June 28 2013, 12:44PM
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@Zamboni Driver

What makes you say they are bad assistant coaches? Serious question...

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#35 OilersBrass
June 28 2013, 12:47PM
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@mlcselli

So greedy! As if 7M a year isn't good enough, especially for a defenseman, what a joke.

He says he wants at least 7.5M a year. The guy couldn't even take a half a million dollar pay cut to play on the team that developed him into the player he is now. It'll be interesting to watch how much his stats drop if he goes to another team.

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#36 etownman
June 28 2013, 12:56PM
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Disagree totally with the notion the Oilers placed the blame for the state of the Oilers on head coach Krueger! Tentative Tamby was axed & MacT brought in his own coach, end of story! I'm sure Eakins made his own mind up in regards to Bucky & Smith! Just can't see MacT making that dramatic move for his head coach & then telling him what to do for his staff, doesn't make sense!

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#37 Rick
June 28 2013, 01:02PM
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Smokey wrote:

Why sign Komisarek if we won't keep a similar player in Fistric. Frankly don't get not keeping Fistric in his current 7th defencemen role.

I for.one.want a quiet draft. The astronomical asking.prices for.Letang and Bolland make.me.hope wye.actually make it to the podium to get our pick. I'd do the 7th and MPS and a second for a signed Letang and a 2nd and conditional third for Bolland. Anything more.is robbery.

Komisarek's resume and Fistric's resume don't come close to matching up. At least Komisarek has been there before.

A fall from grace because you had unrealistic expectations heaped on you does not necessarily mean the whole story has been written.

As for Letang, how do you explain to Hall and Eberle that their newly crafted contracts that set the outter marker for the pay structure of their super duper emerging dynasty (soon to be followed by RNH and Yakupov) was actually an oversight and this new shiny toy that deserves more despite never stepping in the dressing room or enduring the crap of their have?

I would rather see them build a team than continually go after the newest shiniest toy at any cost.

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#38 mr common sense
June 28 2013, 01:03PM
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JOE wrote:

Letang is an elite level defenseman. He's a lock for the Canadian Olympic team.

150%

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#39 denis boul
June 28 2013, 01:08PM
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Not you too Gregor. Old boys club? common! Leave that to the negative journalist who don't know what to write about. It sure seemed to me Eakins was truthful in the media release. This comments made sense.

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#40 DieHard
June 28 2013, 01:08PM
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Eddie Shore wrote:

Love how everyone is ragging on Smith and Buchberger... Any of you ever had them as an assistant coach? Or ever interviewed them on their thoughts/philosophy on coaching? If not, how the hell can you be so sure they are such awful assistants? The voice of the staff has changed, who cares who shoots pucks and back slaps with the team before, during and after practice?

Ya, I agree. It's like these people think they know something and really have no clue what their talking about. Someone else mentioned something and now they're experts at assistant coaches.

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#41 Ca$h-Money!
June 28 2013, 01:10PM
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Rick wrote:

At 1-1.5 mil I would totally take a run at Komisarek. Foot speed aside he possess a lot of what the Oilers are missing. Use him in the bottom pair where he is best suited right now and let him prove he is motivated to be a NHLer again.

Similar reclamation stories have been written over and over with decent success. It seems like a reasonably low risk move especially if Peckham will be given his walking papers and worse yet a guy like Potter is being slotted in still. Low risk high reward given the money suggested.

I'd rather have Fistric for a few more dollars.

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#42 Zamboni Driver
June 28 2013, 01:15PM
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@Eddie Shore

Buchberger has been 'coaching' during last place (twice), second last place and sixth last place.

it's a results business.

Also I didn't say he was a bad coach. I actually think he's a pathetic mascot (see: Semenko, Dave)

I said Oilers fans who honestly believe that this was Dallas Eakins' decision exclusively are just the right kind of morons that Lowe and Laforge have come to expect.

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#43 SrCain
June 28 2013, 01:18PM
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Eddie Shore wrote:

Love how everyone is ragging on Smith and Buchberger... Any of you ever had them as an assistant coach? Or ever interviewed them on their thoughts/philosophy on coaching? If not, how the hell can you be so sure they are such awful assistants? The voice of the staff has changed, who cares who shoots pucks and back slaps with the team before, during and after practice?

I agree with you completely. There's no evidence that bucky and smith are bad assistants. Firing someone just because they've been with a company for awhile is retarded. The PLAYERS are the main reason for all the losing, Tamby was responsible for which ones were here. Someone please tell me how exactly it's the assistant coaches fault? In time, after Eakins has been able to properly assess their abilities, he may change his mind, but for now there is no logical reason to fire them. He also brings in his guy in Acton, who will be doing more than Smith and Bucky.

Besides, a little continuity is a good thing considering there is a new GM, coach, and hopefully a handful of new players. They have fairly minor roles ppl, get over the complaining.

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#44 SrCain
June 28 2013, 01:21PM
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Zamboni Driver wrote:

Buchberger has been 'coaching' during last place (twice), second last place and sixth last place.

it's a results business.

Also I didn't say he was a bad coach. I actually think he's a pathetic mascot (see: Semenko, Dave)

I said Oilers fans who honestly believe that this was Dallas Eakins' decision exclusively are just the right kind of morons that Lowe and Laforge have come to expect.

And fans like you are morons for always believing in the conspiracy theory that no one on the oilers can take a piss without Lowe/Katz permission.

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#45 Zamboni Driver
June 28 2013, 01:47PM
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@SrCain

You're right. My bad.

Because there's lots of evidence to the contrary.

The rest of us will wait while you look up "contrary".

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#46 SrCain
June 28 2013, 01:56PM
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Zamboni Driver wrote:

You're right. My bad.

Because there's lots of evidence to the contrary.

The rest of us will wait while you look up "contrary".

Ok. I'm done. Now what?

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#47 Lochenzo
June 28 2013, 02:03PM
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Maybe Bucky is still around because Taylor Hall, RNH and Ebs gave it the thumbs up. Not a stretch to think that they asked these kids about their relationship with Bucky.

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#48 madjam
June 28 2013, 02:19PM
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Be prepared to maybe disappointed on draft day , as nothing major appears to be in the making . Stu takes over , and MacT. will not be very active I predict . Oilers by Sun reporter are going to draft BPA regardless of size ,grit or position . Skill being uppermost even if it will take a couple of years or more to develop . Only way that changes (albeit unlikely ) is if a couple of choices or more they view much the same with whats left after six-then they might go to default and choose a defenceman or centerman in that order I would think . They apparently will fill holes with current inside personnel and hope to add other pieces at a later date apparently . Probably means Lindholm , Nicushkin in that order if available .

Deals during draft day appear to be remote , probably equalling zero . Not looking forward to another season of new holes and past being filled within once again .

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#49 Tapdog
June 28 2013, 02:34PM
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OilersBrass wrote:

So greedy! As if 7M a year isn't good enough, especially for a defenseman, what a joke.

He says he wants at least 7.5M a year. The guy couldn't even take a half a million dollar pay cut to play on the team that developed him into the player he is now. It'll be interesting to watch how much his stats drop if he goes to another team.

I think it is safe to say that by Letang's refusal of the Penguin offer, something has happened there and by doing so he is writing his ticket out of town(ie:Jordan Stall last year) same thing happened. Now comes a off the wall question that I would appreciate feedback on. If Letang could be acquired; would that help in convincing Lecavalierto put pen to paper here? Apparently team can talk with him and his agent already, just can't sign until the 5th. Thx

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#50 Oiler Al
June 28 2013, 02:43PM
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Eakin and Acton will be hands on running the team. Buck will be up in the box counting the hits, making popcorn and sharpening pencils.

Smith will be behind the bench dreaming about that great goal he scored for the Flames, wearing an Oiler jersey., looking stupid as he is.

After practice its over to Lowe's house to shovel the driveway.

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