TRAINING CAMP: DAY ONE

Jason Gregor
September 11 2013 02:44PM

For all the rookies, today is a great day. It is their first day of main camp, shaking hands with veterans and trying not to look too excited as they attend their first day of training camp. Realistically, the only rookie with a chance to crack the lineup is Oscar Klefbom, but that won't dampen the enthusiasm of the next few days for all the young players.

The rookies aren't the only ones excited though. The veterans are just as giddy about the possibilities that await the 2013/2014 Edmonton Oilers.

For the third straight season they have a new coach, but unlike the previous two head coaches, Dallas Eakins wasn't part of the previous regime and he brings a completely new focus and attitude.

Eakins will be more demanding, and he's going to use the first few days of training camp to gauge the conditioning level and dedication of his players.

The former Toronto Marlies head coach has made it clear he expects his team to be one of the best conditioned teams in the league, and the first few days of on-ice sessions will be fast-paced.

Twenty-five years ago medical day had some interesting story lines, but nowadays all the players are in good to great shape, and now that Theo Peckham is gone, it is unlikely we will hear about any "he's not in great shape" stories today.

Eakins still hasn't had a chance to address his team, but he plans on introducing himself to many of his players today as they move from one testing station to the next.

The players get their eyes checked, they see the dentist, and they get to enjoy a VO2 test, the windgate, agility tests, speed tests and some other pleasurable challenges.

They've all been through it before, and I've noticed that the players aren't intimidated or worried about the tests. Most of the players look at the tests as a challenge. They want to see how they compare to their peers, and see if all the hard work they did in the summer paid off.

Tomorrow all the players will endure an on-ice conditioning test. It is a three minute test. They start at the goal line and go down the ice and back as fast as they can. They do this at every :30 and :00 until three minutes has elapsed. Eakins will monitor the difference between their first skate and their last. The goal is to maintain the same pace throughout.

QUICK HITS...

  • We all know the Oilers want to make the playoffs. It's the goal of every team, and of course the Oilers want to make it, but it was refreshing to hear Eakins' views when he was asked about playoffs."I don't like going big picture. I think if we have our expectations in line and we are able to deliver on a nightly basis...and if you start winning on a nightly basis the big picture takes care of itself.," said Eakins

  • If you don't take care of the small steps, it is hard to compete a task and it was nice hearing a coach address the issues. The Oilers need to learn how to be competitive every night before they can talk or think about making the playoffs.
     
  • Ben Eager has shed some bulk. He's still likely 225 pounds, but he looked much trimmer. Eager played very well for OKC in the playoffs last year, and it will be interesting to see how Eakins uses him. I doubt we will see Eager and Mike Brown in the lineup at the same time, and if the Oilers keep 8 D-men, you can't have one of them as your 13th forward, so it seems like those two could be battling for one spot.
     
  • Eager's size and speed would be very useful, but the question is if can play smart enough in his own zone? If Eager plays hard, and Eakins shows some confidence in him, he might return to the NHL. I don't see many spots up for grabs, but he could push Brown.
     
  • Jesse Joensuu is a legit 6'4". He has decent skill, but if he shows a willingness to use his size down low and in the corners he might get a long look in the top six. Eakins hinted he wants guys with different dimensions and skills among his top-six or top-nine, and Joensuu has what no other skilled forward has; a big frame. I'm curious to see who Eakins plays him with in the preseason.
     
  • I don't care if Joensuu isn't a great skater. Not every player needs to be lighting fast. If his game is good on the boards and in front of the net, how fast does he need to be. The Oilers need to diversify their lineup.
     
  • Eakins hasn't made up his mind, but right now he has Andrew Ference pencilled in to play with Justin Schultz. He admitted he needs to see guys play together, and there is no guarantee pairs will stay together all season, but like most of us expected Ference will get a look with J.Schultz.
     
  • Eakins also wants to find chemistry amongst forward duos, rather than a trio. It is rare to keep a line together all season, and even though Hall, Nugent-Hopkins, Eberle have had great success for short stints, we likely won't see line combinations stay consistent all season.
     
  • Don't expect the Oilers to go out and get a heavyweight goon. Eakins doesn't like guys who can't play. If they could find a tough, physical guy who could play, then he'd consider it, but I don't expect the Oilers to find the next Steve MacIntryre.
     
  • Eakins is a very serious guy. It oozes out when he talks to the media and his players. There will be much more accountability this season. You should expect the Oilers to be much more competitive on a nightly basis this year. Time will tell if that equates to more victories, but I'd be surprised if Eakins allows this team to coast through stretches of games, which has happened too often the past three or four years. 

 RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
Avatar
#1 DSF
September 11 2013, 07:02PM
Trash it!
80
trashes
Cheers
10
cheers

Eakins is starting to remind me of Kavis Reed.

All hat, no cattle.

We'll see.

Avatar
#2 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
September 11 2013, 05:10PM
Trash it!
50
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

You'd think with all those Engineers walking around the U of eh, they could figure out a way to update their home ice surroundings. What a bloody dump. The rink is an embarrassment. Just sitting in those shippy dressing rooms alone must be incentive enough for the Oiler rookies to try harder so they don't end up there. That rink makes Rexall look like the Taj Mahal.

Avatar
#3 Wonger
September 11 2013, 03:34PM
Trash it!
35
trashes
Cheers
12
cheers

Like the great Brian Burke said you need elite enforcers to protect your skill- you need a safe working environment for your skill. The Oil have tons of skill- they need tons of protection for that skill - BIG MAC will be available on waivers Oct.1. OIL in the same division as Calgary ( McGrattan, Jackman, O'Brien) Vancouver (Sestito, Kassian, Bieksa, Alberts, etc.) and Colorado (Bordeleau, Sarich, Wilson, 55, etc.).It got sickening to watch the kids run every night last year! Mike Brown is super tough but too small for McGrattan (although they had an AHL tilt in 2005). PL3 and MAC are in Pitt - one or both of them will be on waivers Oct1 (PL3 has an AHL contract - MAC is at full NHL 650K this year. BIG JOHN SCOTT would solve all toughness issues for the OIl by himself. DAVID STAPLES IS RIGHT ON THE MONEY!!!! OILERS NEED A GOON. Watch the Saturday split squad games vs Calgary - McGrats will put one of our skill guys on IR for sure with NO RESPONSE!!!!!

Avatar
#4 DSF
September 11 2013, 08:40PM
Trash it!
25
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers
** wrote:

Reed is like the crazy angry hobo yelling at a corner for no reason. Eakins is like a drill sergeant who doesn't take crap from anyone.

Donuts?

Seriously?

Avatar
#5 oilbaron
September 11 2013, 10:23PM
Trash it!
21
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

I got bad feelings about Belov's "visa" issues. While he initially sounded optimistic about coming to Edmonton, that was before 18 other defencemen were signed. Then Eakins is hired and sends out the training camp expectations. Maybe the russian factor jolted up a notch?

Maybe I'm making something out of nothing and it's just a hitch, as it appears. I sure hope so because I really want to see him wearing the blue!

Avatar
#6 DSF
September 11 2013, 08:43PM
Trash it!
18
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

10 questions:

http://www.edmontonjournal.com/sports/hockey/edmonton-oilers/questions+surrounding+Edmonton+Oilers/8900748/story.html

Avatar
#7 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 11 2013, 11:18PM
Trash it!
16
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Johe wrote:

Yes! To me toughness is never quitting. You get knocked down you get right back up. You lose the puck you work your tail off to get it back. Speed, tenacity, passion, and skill. That's the type of team the Oilers should strive to be.

Spoken like another small guy. So you want a whole team of little engines that could....a whole team of Captain Snowypants....let me set you straight...you want to be the guy doin the knocking....so you don't ever have to get back up....I think you left out pugnacious and truculent....

Avatar
#8 brian_d
September 11 2013, 02:58PM
Trash it!
13
trashes
Cheers
16
cheers

Long time lurker, first time poster here. Love most all ON blogs. If Ference is paired with Schultz, assuming the top pairing is Smid and Petry. Would a dynamic duo of J. Shultz and Petry be too vulnerable in their own end? They'd definitely keep the puck moving!

Avatar
#9 David S
September 11 2013, 03:52PM
Trash it!
13
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers
brian_d wrote:

Long time lurker, first time poster here. Love most all ON blogs. If Ference is paired with Schultz, assuming the top pairing is Smid and Petry. Would a dynamic duo of J. Shultz and Petry be too vulnerable in their own end? They'd definitely keep the puck moving!

*Watches as new guys come onto the site every fall*

Hey lookit all the fresh mea...Uhhh...WELCOME ABOARD BRIAN!

Avatar
#10 David S
September 11 2013, 03:59PM
Trash it!
13
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

~"OILERS NEED A GOON!"~

*Edited - Too far.

Avatar
#11 BorjeSalming-IanTurnbull
September 11 2013, 05:42PM
Trash it!
12
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

I just worried that Mr. Eakins will alienate some players with his no nonsense style. He continues to say the right things to the press, but we'll see how this approach works a couple of months into the sched. I remember listening and liking the propaganda that has come with the last group of Head Coaches the Oilers have propped up in front of us to admire. I hope the Eakin- MacT tenure starts with a better work effort and commitment but I pray they keep the B.S. behind closed doors. Note to all Oilers players** When you see Bob Stauffer!! become Sergeant Schultz from Hogan's Heros "I hear nothing,I see nothing, I know nothing!!

Avatar
#12 Bigfan
September 11 2013, 10:47PM
Trash it!
11
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers

Great sign, but its "becomING" not "become" That is, the sign should say ... "becoming a Professional Hockey Player"

Avatar
#13 Papamike
September 11 2013, 07:19PM
Trash it!
10
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers
DSF wrote:

Eakins is starting to remind me of Kavis Reed.

All hat, no cattle.

We'll see.

Now that is funny, right there

hard to compare, one is a coach, the other is not.

GO STAMPS GO!

Avatar
#14 Oiler Al
September 11 2013, 10:42PM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

Talking about needing an enforcer or face puncher if you like... right now with the potential line up..there isn't a single player on the that team that could even lay a hurtin hit on a guy never mind punching his face out.

That's a scare taught. Where is Sutton or Fistric when you need them.

Avatar
#15 Alsker
September 11 2013, 10:50PM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
18
cheers
DSF wrote:

Eakins is starting to remind me of Kavis Reed.

All hat, no cattle.

We'll see.

Really hate to feed the troll...but seriously....looking to break your record of trashes for one comment...epic fail dude, simply epic fail....

Avatar
#16 Big Cap
September 12 2013, 01:50AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

For those who believe that we don't need a Heavyweight or there's no room in the game for one, then why do alot of other teams in our division all have one??

Mike Brown fits a great role for us, but no true Heavyweight or light heavyweight is the slightest worried about Brown.

Its completely embarrassing to watch guys like Regher or McGratton run free with the no fear.

Booguard was a non factor once Big Mac was there to saw him off as an equal. How many guys did the Boogyman put out on our team in years past?

This is Oil Country - We Don't Get Pushed Around!

Avatar
#17 madjam
September 11 2013, 11:13PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

You get the feeling MacT. not finished dealing yet . I'm expecting two deals before season starts .

Avatar
#18 Wonger
September 12 2013, 06:13PM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

OILERS WILL GET RUN RIGHT OUT OF THEIR DIVISION!!! They will finish dead last!!! Their management doesn't understand the importance of toughness and they never will. Even Calgary will dominate them on Saturday and throughout the season. They could have had Matt Kassian, Tom Sestito ang Frazer McLaren off of waivers last year for zip or McGrattan or MacIntyre but they choose to employ Lander, Ryan Smyth , Ryan Jones, etc. REALLY!!!

Avatar
#19 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
September 11 2013, 03:01PM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
19
cheers

So why the talk of a heavyweight from McKenzie? I just don't get it. You have Eager and Brown, then milhouse names Rosehill and Peluso as guys the Oilers would target.

It makes no sense.

At least Macintyre makes sense for Sestito and McGrattan, but another middleweight that plays 5 minutes a night just has me confused.

Avatar
#20 DigDeepNBleedBlue
September 11 2013, 06:33PM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

Training Camp Rant (ahhhhhhh, lovin' it!), Day 1:

The Oil need some moxie. Hope Eager makes the team. Sounds like he's all in. Also sounds like he will be given his chance. Hammer down big guy!

Hall at center? If it works, it works. What else can you say?

Captain? Simple. Whoever pulls the sword from the stone. Still think a wait is not a bad thing.

Not sure 8 D-men is the right roster makeup. Potter or Larson as an 8th doesn't seem overly beneficial. I'd go with 14 forwards.

Right now I think you got Omark, Joensuu, Eager, Brown, Jones and Lander fighting for those last forward roster spots. Sure, you can include Acton and R. Hamilton. However you cut it up it should be a good battle. Puck it up, boys!

Theme song for these cats: 'List of Demands'!

Hemsky is a talent, that's for sure, but not sure he makes this team better. Might actually make it worse.

The question: Does his skill set work in the bottom six?

That 3rd line looks like a science experiment that's about to go horribly wrong. For me this is the main story to follow in TC. Hemsky is either a positive on that line or he's not.

Sh*t, maybe he plays his way into the top six. The freakin' suspense!

TC sleeper pick: Pitlick. Is this the year he steps up? I'll drink to the possibility.

Avatar
#21 David S
September 11 2013, 03:57PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
14
cheers
Wonger wrote:

Like the great Brian Burke said you need elite enforcers to protect your skill- you need a safe working environment for your skill. The Oil have tons of skill- they need tons of protection for that skill - BIG MAC will be available on waivers Oct.1. OIL in the same division as Calgary ( McGrattan, Jackman, O'Brien) Vancouver (Sestito, Kassian, Bieksa, Alberts, etc.) and Colorado (Bordeleau, Sarich, Wilson, 55, etc.).It got sickening to watch the kids run every night last year! Mike Brown is super tough but too small for McGrattan (although they had an AHL tilt in 2005). PL3 and MAC are in Pitt - one or both of them will be on waivers Oct1 (PL3 has an AHL contract - MAC is at full NHL 650K this year. BIG JOHN SCOTT would solve all toughness issues for the OIl by himself. DAVID STAPLES IS RIGHT ON THE MONEY!!!! OILERS NEED A GOON. Watch the Saturday split squad games vs Calgary - McGrats will put one of our skill guys on IR for sure with NO RESPONSE!!!!!

Oh god.

Kent nailed it on the last article. If Calgary has McGrattan out on the ice the game's already out of reach and Eakins can sit his stars. So it ends up they won't get hit by their designated face-puncher in a last-minute-of-the-game retaliation move (which will be sure to get him a multi-game suspension anyways).

McGrattan. Good one man. Good one.

Avatar
#22 number99
September 11 2013, 05:29PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
42
cheers

@Next up, is Connor McJesus.

Just be positive once

Avatar
#23 boxman
September 11 2013, 07:18PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
43
cheers

All hat, no cattle.....That's the fella you see shaving in the mirror DSF.

Avatar
#24 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 11 2013, 10:56PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Leafsblow wrote:

Oilers don't need a big heavyweight goon. They need more players to play a tougher shift. Size has very little to do with toughness and being hard to play against.

Size doesnt matter.....That's what all you small guys say!

But your right about the Leafs.

Avatar
#25 book¡e
September 12 2013, 09:39AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers
Reg Dunlop wrote:

A couple of things:

First off, I am embarrassed to ask a geezer such as yourself but what in the world does this even mean?

Second, I get that you are bitter about the mismanagement of the oil during the last decade and it spews out like poison whenever you reference anyone associated with the team. BUT why the grind on the Eskimos? Do you have some imagined beef with that organization? Or are you just stirring the pot out of boredom? This is a sincere thought... Walmart hires blue hairs as greeters, it would give you something to do, maybe feel better about yourself, be a little less curmudgeonly.

To be fair to DSF - the Eskimos are on their worst losing streak in 42 years - criticism may be justified there.

Avatar
#27 Chilly Canadian
September 11 2013, 03:55PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers

I'm all for optimism, but I'm not expecting Joensuu to make the top six, or even the top nine! He was a bubble player on the Isles, what makes you think he'll be any better here? I understand the whole late bloomer thing but I just don't get the hype. Stop looking so hard for the "big man who plays hard but has soft hands" player that it covers your glasses with mud.

Avatar
#28 Leafsblow
September 11 2013, 04:23PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
32
cheers

Oilers don't need a big heavyweight goon. They need more players to play a tougher shift. Size has very little to do with toughness and being hard to play against.

Avatar
#29 MessyEH!
September 11 2013, 04:37PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
12
cheers
David S wrote:

~"OILERS NEED A GOON!"~

*Edited - Too far.

The last thing the Oilers need is unskilled players. I hope Eakins can coach Brown and Eager into PK Specialists. Both players have shown they can really play hockey. If Eakins can get them killing Penalties and playing the opposition to a stand still, then we'll have a truly effective 4th line.

Smyth may surprise us. If any player was going to push themselves to the limit I beleive it would be Ryan Smyth. Hopefully he comes to camp ready to battle in front of the net.

Avatar
#30 WhattaMike
September 11 2013, 04:57PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

IMO, I wish we could find more Bill Guerin type guys...ones who could skate, score, fight, and play two way hockey. Billy was about 6'2" atll and averaged about 220 lbs...(very good size player).

I also have to say I would like to see Joensuu get a trial shot to line up with Hall and RNH or Gagner and Ebs....or even Gagner and Yak.

Putting Perron then with Gordon and Hemsky would make a fine scoring type 3rd line in this case with even the fourth line of Jones, Smyth and Lander/Acton being good.

line 1: Hall-RNH-Eberle Line 2: Joensuu-Gagner-Yak Line 3: Perron-Gordon-Hemsky Line 4: Smyth-Lander/Acton-Jones

Choice for Extras: Eager, Brown, Hamilton

Omark... will likely get on waivers by the end of TC but maybe he can be a first type call up from OKC this year and then be able to show the Oilers he has improved much more as a two way guy.

Avatar
#31 Geoff
September 11 2013, 05:53PM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers

LOL i love the opening comment in the dallas eakins Raw interview. "Enjoy those donuts cause you won't see them again"

Avatar
#32 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
September 11 2013, 03:19PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
21
cheers

I'm excited.

Eakins is very impressive. But so was Ralph. And I loved Renney. I was excited about Pat Quinn, too.

Watch the videos on oilers.nhl.tv. The boys are saying all the usual things. I actually got tired of hearing all 6 guys talk about the same thing.

Let's see where this ship is headed come winter.

Avatar
#33 2004Z06
September 11 2013, 03:24PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
22
cheers

The start of training camp is always a double edged sword. On one hand the dog days of summer are almost over, and on the other, the dog days of summer are almost over.

Avatar
#34 Ivan Drago
September 11 2013, 03:49PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers
Jason Gregor wrote:

I do expect the Oilers to try and have three scoring lines. I could see Perron with Hemsky possibly. Hard to say at this point. Eakins talked about duos, so will depend which pairs he likes together. Should be fun to see who emerges as combos with chemistry.

Yes it should be fun. If it happens it will be a good problem to have. Admittedly I haven't seen Perron play much, but I think I remember hearing he causes a fair number of offsides, like Hemmer lol. Course I could just be talking out my rear!

Avatar
#35 Rama Lama
September 11 2013, 06:17PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

What about all those choclate chip cookies that Yaks, RNH, Hall and Schultz were eating at that nice ladies house? You know the clip from the Oilers website.

Eating donughts is no different than putting two spoons of sugar in you coffee........much to do about nothing.

If Eakins can revive players like Eager, Jones, I will be impressed.

Avatar
#36 Taylor Gang
September 11 2013, 06:49PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
20
cheers
Next up, is Connor McJesus. wrote:

You'd think with all those Engineers walking around the U of eh, they could figure out a way to update their home ice surroundings. What a bloody dump. The rink is an embarrassment. Just sitting in those shippy dressing rooms alone must be incentive enough for the Oiler rookies to try harder so they don't end up there. That rink makes Rexall look like the Taj Mahal.

What ever happened to the get Weber talk of yesteryear? At least you were passionate. Now you're like my girlfriend when mother nature comes around once a month...

Avatar
#37 CurtyB
September 11 2013, 07:58PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

We don't need an enforcer. But we do need more fights!

Avatar
#38 j
September 12 2013, 08:13AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

@Big Cap

Hmmm - didn't we have a number of tough guys all those years Regher ran 'free'? Didn't seem to help much as he played against our top two lines. I understand the concept of having a facepuncher. I really do. I have been a fan of the team since Semenko and met him in a few occasions. Great guy. But it doesn't help you win many hockey games. Period. You can make the case that from time to time a fight has changed momentum but, as pointed out by Willis (I believe) the stats don't support it. And wouldn't a goal from the fourth line change the momentum even more? How about a good fore-checking shift? I think the fourth line can be much more effective with actual hockey players taking the ice.

Avatar
#39 Batfink
September 11 2013, 03:03PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
15
cheers

@brian_d

Welcome Brian!

@ Gregor: Just you talking about Eager, I believe another duty of the coach is to develop players. Who knows, maybe Eakins can re-invigorate and perhaps tweak some players games, who we thought were out of the picture. Would be a nice bonus.

Avatar
#40 vetinari
September 11 2013, 03:20PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers
brian_d wrote:

Long time lurker, first time poster here. Love most all ON blogs. If Ference is paired with Schultz, assuming the top pairing is Smid and Petry. Would a dynamic duo of J. Shultz and Petry be too vulnerable in their own end? They'd definitely keep the puck moving!

brian_d, welcome to the boards...

As for a Schultz Jr. and Petry combination, I think that would be a killer PP combination but 5-on-5, maybe a little too risky.

I can't wait to see how the team starts the season. If the players aren't used to Eakins level of conditioning, I see a real danger of the team hitting a lull by New Years or so. Also, the more vigorous practices and off-days are, the greater the risk of injury is to the players.

Excuse me while I grab my remote, my jersey and a beer from the fridge-- hockey is back!!!

Avatar
#41 Lochenzo
September 11 2013, 03:25PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
21
cheers

That 3 minute drill scares me. I know it's a relatively short duration, but to keep the jets on that long. I'd be gassed at 2 minutes and begging for somebody to put me out of my misery after 3 minutes.

Avatar
#42 DieHard
September 11 2013, 03:33PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
20
cheers

This is the most optimistic I've been in a long time. No more hoping to lose for that precious top pick. Don't care no more. I want to win.

Avatar
#43 Benny Botts
September 11 2013, 03:41PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

@Gregor

Jason, Will you doing a live blog from the camp each day? I thought last year or the year before you did that.

Thanks!

Avatar
#46 Slapshotzky
September 11 2013, 04:22PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

Great article Jason. I'm hoping Dallas does well with this team. The last few seasons, and since the playoffs really, things have felt grim and hopeless. With MacT at the helm and Dallas as coach there is reason to be hopeful again. Glad to be done with the Tambo era.

(thanks for the draft picks though Tamby!)

Avatar
#47 Bi-Curious Gord
September 11 2013, 04:43PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
41
cheers

I'm hoping that the AHL stint last year will prove to be a reality check for Eager. If he shows up this year with his head screwed on straight the Oilers could use his speed, size & A-hole factor. I'm rooting for him. I hope he's hungry.

Avatar
#48 Ducey
September 11 2013, 05:09PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
33
cheers
Wonger wrote:

Like the great Brian Burke said you need elite enforcers to protect your skill- you need a safe working environment for your skill. The Oil have tons of skill- they need tons of protection for that skill - BIG MAC will be available on waivers Oct.1. OIL in the same division as Calgary ( McGrattan, Jackman, O'Brien) Vancouver (Sestito, Kassian, Bieksa, Alberts, etc.) and Colorado (Bordeleau, Sarich, Wilson, 55, etc.).It got sickening to watch the kids run every night last year! Mike Brown is super tough but too small for McGrattan (although they had an AHL tilt in 2005). PL3 and MAC are in Pitt - one or both of them will be on waivers Oct1 (PL3 has an AHL contract - MAC is at full NHL 650K this year. BIG JOHN SCOTT would solve all toughness issues for the OIl by himself. DAVID STAPLES IS RIGHT ON THE MONEY!!!! OILERS NEED A GOON. Watch the Saturday split squad games vs Calgary - McGrats will put one of our skill guys on IR for sure with NO RESPONSE!!!!!

You lost me at "the great Brian Burke".

Avatar
#49 OilDieHard
September 11 2013, 08:16PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
13
cheers

^what we really need is more wins!!

Avatar
#50 **
September 11 2013, 08:22PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers
Jason Gregor wrote:

I will say, I don't think the conditioning of the OIlers was an issue in previous years. They weren't grossly out of shape.

I believe Eakins biggest challenge will be conditioning them to be competitive and accountable every game.

I beg to disagree. Usually around january they seem to hit a wall, not just mentally but physically some players just seem to run out of gas.

Comments are closed for this article.