The Road Gets a Little Bumpier

Jason Strudwick
September 23 2013 09:33AM

Saturday night, in a preseason game against the Vancouver Canucks there was a stupid stick swinging incident involving the Canucks Zack Kassian. The result has really put a dent in the Oilers ability to have a strong start to this season.

Sam Gagner was hit by Kassian's stick in the mouth and by all reports he will miss a yet to be determined number of regular season games thanks to a broken jaw. The timing of this is very frustrating for any player.

All players work very hard in the summer to be fine tuned to get off to a good start. Hours in the gym and on the ice make sure they are ready to go. There is never a good time to be injured but I always felt that getting hurt in preseason was brutal.

The rest of the NHL continues right along and a player injured in exhibition is left behind. It is inevitable that Gagner will lose the fine edge he was worked on all summer. His level of conditioning will be challenged in two ways:

One, I would not expect a lot of training for him while the injury is acute. Two, his calorie and diet intake will be altered. After losing teeth and breaking your jaw would you feel like consuming the necessary calories to maintain your weight and energy levels?

I once took a puck to the mouth the morning after our team's rookie party (great times by the way). The dentist described the state of my mouth like this... "it looks like a grenade went off on your lips." Not what I wanted to hear, especially after a late night. A bunch of teeth were loose and I had to wear a brace across my top row of teeth. I lived on soup and protein shakes for a few weeks. Until I could eat whole foods again I was losing weight faster then Gregor was losing his hair at the age of eighteen.

This isn't good news for Gagner. In time he will get to the level he wants to be but it will not be right away. I know how competitive he is and the high expectations he puts on himself. The longer his down time, the longer it will take for him to get back to playing at his self imposed high level.

For the Oilers, the Gagner injury will leave them without their top two centers to start the season. Due to the Olympic break the Oilers have a full month of games in October. Wins will be harder to come by without both Gagner and Nuge. Take the top two centers off any team and that team will struggle.

As for Zach Kassian this was a very stupid play. I honestly don't understand how his stick could end up hitting Gagner in the face. I feel that a player is always responsible for his stick. Always. I do not think it was by accident that it flew up and hit Gagner in the face. It was on or near the ice and then flies up? Makes no sense to me.

The Consequences

Kassian will probably be suspended. If I am the Oilers why do I care about that? It doesn't bring back Gagner any sooner. One, two, 5, 10 games...doesn't make a difference. Even for the Canucks, at this stage in Kassian's development their team will move on without him.

I think the issue is with the lack of overall toughness in the Oilers lineup. Players like Kassian have no fear in playing the Oilers extra tough. Who outside of Mike Brown can stand up to a guy like Kassian or Andrew Alberts? Both these guys were running around Saturday night in Edmonton like there was no reason to be afraid! They're big guys, but nothing to lose sleep over unless a team like the Oilers doesn't have guys to match up to them with.

I know Edmonton got a lot of power plays against the Canucks Saturday. The plan is to score on those PP attempts frequently enough that the opponent will have to tone down the physical play. I get that, but at some point doesn't the team need to have the ability to stand up for itself?

When is enough enough? And when they get to that point who will be the guy to do it? I really like Brown as a player, he played very well saturday, but it is unfair to ask one undersized guy to fight the whole team's battles. I am not saying go out and bring in a Steve MacIntyre type player, just bring in someone who can play and step up when needed.

Last summer the Canadians signed Brandon Prust to a nice contract. He plays hard and fought most of the team's battles when needed. He did a good job but it is a lonely job if you are the only one doing it and you are undersized. Marc Bergevin saw the need to get him some help. This off season he brought in George Parros to take the pressure off Prust. I guarantee all the Habs are walking taller this season.

I don't care if Kassian gets suspended for one or ten games. I do care how the Oilers respond when they play him again. It is important for the team to not brush this over like nothing happened or it was an accident. The Oiler team can make a statement to not only the Canucks but all the teams in the league with some kind of a response.

Will someone stand up and say enough is enough?

5cf6b487166aced0cd781e41bfef915e
Jason hosts the Jason Strudwick show from 9pm to 12am, weeknights on the team 1260. He is an instructor at Mount Carmel Hockey Academy and loves working with the kids. Having played over 650 games in the NHL, Jason has some great stories and unique takes on life in the NHL. He loves Slurpees and Blizzards. Dislikes baggy clothes and close talkers.
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#51 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 10:58AM
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Truth wrote:

How is it possible to quantify the amount of games Hall and Eberle would have missed if SMACK wasn't on the team?

Eberle surely wouldn't have rolled his ankle. Or maybe he would have done it twice!

The fact is Weise would have had to fight SMACK, not Mike Brown on Saturday. I think that would have ended differently. Hopefully differently enough that Kassian wouldn't be "losing his balance" and swinging his stick in the teeth region of Gagner. I will guarantee SMACK is on the ice for the first shift Kassian is next time, and that makes me happy. I can't imagine how Gagner, Eberle, Hall, Yak, RNH, Schultz, Nurse, Perron, etc. etc. feel about it, but I bet they like the idea.

Edit: sorry replied to wrong individual. Meant to be Romulus' Apotheosis re: missed games with or without SMACK in the lineup

Go through every team Smac has played on... every time key players have still gotten injured.

He's just not good at hockey. That will hurt the team more than the opposition.

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#52 OilFan J
September 23 2013, 11:09AM
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Signing SMac was a decision made in haste. How is Mac gonna intimidate and enforce from the bench. We've all seen him play and as I recall, he can't play at this level. Next question: Who's roster spot does he take ?

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#53 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 11:15AM
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DSF wrote:

No one is disputing that having D depth is a good thing but given the organizational depth at the position adding Ference, Belov, Grebs, Larsen and Hunt while totalling ignoring C is not defensible.

Only an apogolist would call that a "blind spot".

It's dumb.

Learn how to read.

I said it was dumb. That's how this conversation started.

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#54 JJ
September 23 2013, 11:22AM
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Why are people downvoting me for suggesting he'll compete with Brown for a spot.

If Brown took Eager's spot, why can't someone take Brown's spot? I don't think anyone in the bottom 6 should be a lock.

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#55 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 23 2013, 12:09PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

So, what is the fantasy here...

SMac is put on the ice against the Sedins.

If.. and this is a big if, he manages to catch up to one of them without the Oil getting scored on, he smashes one.

A Sedin is out for x amount of time.

SMac is suspended for x amount of time.

The Oilers don't improve having the Nucks lose a player. Probably lose the game. And now they are without their hulking beast.

You gain nothing other than violence and are back to square one.

Enough already....we get that you don't get it!

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#56 Gkpoil
September 23 2013, 12:46PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

So, what is the fantasy here...

SMac is put on the ice against the Sedins.

If.. and this is a big if, he manages to catch up to one of them without the Oil getting scored on, he smashes one.

A Sedin is out for x amount of time.

SMac is suspended for x amount of time.

The Oilers don't improve having the Nucks lose a player. Probably lose the game. And now they are without their hulking beast.

You gain nothing other than violence and are back to square one.

Maybe hockey is too violent for you, prehaps tennis is more your type of game.

Face it Smack isn't the final answer for the oil but at least he offers a response, hopefully Eakins will let him goon it up when needed (but I don't expect you to understand why targeting another teams' stars can be a useful deterent)

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#57 Eastern Oil
September 23 2013, 12:58PM
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@Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

Give it a rest. Explain why you disagree with Rom's position instead of resorting to playground antics.

All I hear in the lower levels of discourse is cliches and catch words. Whether you disagree with either of their positions or not, at least they are having a decent discussion about it.

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#58 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 01:12PM
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Gkpoil wrote:

Maybe hockey is too violent for you, prehaps tennis is more your type of game.

Face it Smack isn't the final answer for the oil but at least he offers a response, hopefully Eakins will let him goon it up when needed (but I don't expect you to understand why targeting another teams' stars can be a useful deterent)

I think this gets to the heart of the matter for a lot of the side conversations here.

I love hockey. I love a good tilt. I love a good hit. I love the odd Messier elbow.

But I love hockey.

I don't love goon shows. I don't love players who can't do anything but hit meat.

I also don't think these kind of players help you win games. Which, is the object of hockey.

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#59 GVBlackhawk
September 23 2013, 06:25PM
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Reach Advantage wrote:

You gain this very valuable thing:

Kassian doesn't do what he did again.

Also, other teams see what happened and they don't do what Kassian did.

Very valuable.

That is far from the truth.

It is the same reason why the death penalty is not a deterrent for people to commit murders. People do dumb things in the heat of the moment and have no thought for the consequences.

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#60 wazy08
September 23 2013, 09:19AM
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Where is Jody Shelley? Literally dress him for 30 games this season with the understanding that if someone gets looked at funny he knows his role. If someone pulls a Kassian on Gagner, that not only is Kassian responsible but perhaps the Sedins or Kesler are also held accountable for Kassian/Weises actions. The Oilers need to rock a Brown/Shelley type of players in their lineup. Tired of a soft team thats gonna keep having players injured because they dont stand up for themselves. I agree 100% with you Strudwick. PP's are nice, but what are you gonna do when your star PP players are all on LTR.

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#61 Reg Dunlop
September 23 2013, 09:30AM
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Will wrote:

Struds I'm pretty sure MacT tried to bring in David Clarkson, Clutterbuck, and other functional tough guys last year. But unless they can play with our skill, what;s the point.

I really think you're glossing over the fact that all their running around lead to a bunch of powerplays. It was also pre season so win or lose it doesn't matter. The best enforcer will always be a deadly power play.

What's the point? What's the point in having a bunch of small, skilled guys if they are constantly injured or intimidated to the point that their skill is only on display when PP opportunities arise(which will be seldom when refs put away the whistles later this season). Does anyone remember how much tougher Peckham and Stortini were when Glencross was here? Time to get someone to ride shotgun for Brown.

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#62 Manfly
September 23 2013, 09:33AM
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the problem is, Jason, that the Oilers can't really as a team respond physically...they just aren't tough enough as a team to do it. so if, for now, the Oilers can continue to make the Canucks pay on the scoreboard, then i'm cool with that. who won the last 2 meetings again between the Canucks and Oilers, including the game on Saturday when the Canucks dressed all their goons and big guys....the Oilers!! let's hope they can continue to do so in the regular season as well!

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#63 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 23 2013, 09:40AM
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FINALLY!!!

The voice of reason from someone who played the game!!

I think that what the Oilers Nation conversation about team toughness lacks is pragmatism. People argue that their point of view is right forever and for always. Their arguments don't take into consideration the CIRCUMSTANCES of any given team.

Is the need for goonary in this league dissipating over time due to things like rule changes, the speed of the game etc,?? Of course it is!

Some people argue that teams like Chicago or Pittsburgh win championships without the goon factor. YES yes they do....but they have team toughness, several guys who although not goons can still fight, and they are mature teams!,...their star players are MEN.....physically mature...been around the block several times...MEN....

Can the Oilers ice a team without an enforcer, or at least a Mike Brown and a "Mike Browns Bigger Brother".....maybe someday....maybe even someday soon!.......But not today......today we have a team of young, physically immature (relatively speaking) highly skilled players. In the short term, and temporarily, you HAVE to strike a balance...based on the circumstances of YOUR TEAM....not based on some philosophical argument about the merits of fighting or eliminating fighting. And not based on statistics or perceived bearing that fighting has as a deterrent.

Just based on its specific history, the Oilers find themselves at a time and place where, until they reach the desired balance of physical toughness, which maybe a year or two or even three....where the Fantastic Five are in their mid twenties, and we've got at least two or three other veterans who can scrap and play hockey, something has to give.......

Glad to hear Jason Strudwick standing up as the voice of reason here.....and to think....that voice....coming from a FIGURE SKATER!!!......go FIGURE! (skater)

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#64 The Oilers Shot Clock
September 23 2013, 09:41AM
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I can't remember if it was Pierre Page or Brian Sutter, but years ago, during the flames YoungGun years, they had just lost a game against Detroit. Post game one of the reporters asked why he wasnt playing Rocky Thompson more. The response? Because every time I do Bowman just shift changes and throws out Yzerman and Fedorov.

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#65 DSF
September 23 2013, 10:06AM
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Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 1m Oil claim Mcintyre

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#66 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 10:12AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Hey Mr. Know it All.........since you know everything about hockey how about how about asking the players how they feel about having some deterrence?

I suspect all of them would endorse having Steve Mac back!

The psychological value I'm happy to acknowledge. People consistently claim it has value. I'm not going to quarrel with it.

BUT... the actual empirical claims made have never yielded results.

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#67 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
September 23 2013, 10:21AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

"I think the issue is with the lack of overall toughness in the Oilers lineup. Players like Kassian have no fear in playing the Oilers extra tough. Who outside of Mike Brown can stand up to a guy like Kassian or Andrew Alberts? Both these guys were running around Saturday night in Edmonton like there was no reason to be afraid! They're big guys, but nothing to lose sleep over unless a team like the Oilers doesn't have guys to match up to them with."

I honestly understand the sentiment here. It's a conventional wisdom that's worn more than a few tires down past all-weather conditions.

But, it is complete nonsense. All one need do is watch hockey to understand that the crippling injuries suffered by freak accident or horrible goonery have nothing to do with whether the offending team/player concerns themselves/himself with the tough guys opposite.

Smac prevented nothing when he was here.

As someone at LT's mentioned: Chara, Lucic and Thornton... not one of them prevented Savard's injury.

This never works.

By all means acquire an actual hockey player who can play with an edge. By all means.

But don't delude yourself into thinking this will prevent injury or goonery. This is simply wishful thinking.

The hypocrisy in this comment (and a few others) is ludicrous!

MacTavish said it a number of times - "functional tough guys" are hard to acquire. Perhaps that's why he threw $5M/year at Clarkson.

When your options are limited, you do what you can, not contend "conventional wisdom" with "conventional wisdom."

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#68 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
September 23 2013, 10:40AM
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For the odd time it'll happen, I think it would be justifiable to have Smack just jump the boards (go all Clarkson on them) when required for incidents such as this. When something happens, just do what needs to be done Steve. Jump over the boards. and the two weeks in Mexico during each suspension would just be a bonus.

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#69 Truth
September 23 2013, 10:44AM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

That's a frightening thought, isn't it?

How is it possible to quantify the amount of games Hall and Eberle would have missed if SMACK wasn't on the team?

Eberle surely wouldn't have rolled his ankle. Or maybe he would have done it twice!

The fact is Weise would have had to fight SMACK, not Mike Brown on Saturday. I think that would have ended differently. Hopefully differently enough that Kassian wouldn't be "losing his balance" and swinging his stick in the teeth region of Gagner. I will guarantee SMACK is on the ice for the first shift Kassian is next time, and that makes me happy. I can't imagine how Gagner, Eberle, Hall, Yak, RNH, Schultz, Nurse, Perron, etc. etc. feel about it, but I bet they like the idea.

Edit: sorry replied to wrong individual. Meant to be Romulus' Apotheosis re: missed games with or without SMACK in the lineup

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#70 jake
September 23 2013, 10:47AM
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Getting injured in pre-season is brutal. Yes it is Jason. Why did Eakins dress his top six (sans RNH) against that Vancouver team? May not have changed the outcome, but it may have - with due respect to Martindale, Arcobello, Miller, I would rather have one of them out 6-8 weeks than 89. They were on the TC roster Saturday night.

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#71 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 10:48AM
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Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy! wrote:

Beautiful! Way to make a statement, MacT. Mr. Dithers would have pondered this for a while.

A knuckle dragger with a screw loose... now that's intimidation!

Too bad there aren't two of them.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hImezA0nbDU

Dithers actually did the exact same thing.

C depth collapses and he put a claim in on Volpatti and traded for Brown while Hall and Jussi J passed on waivers.

MacT is reading the wrong playbook today.

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#72 Next up, is Connor McJesus.
September 23 2013, 10:52AM
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StHenriOilBomb wrote:

The suspensions, as I read yesterday (searching for the link), will be effective during the regular season, and anyone suspended will also miss the rest of preseason until his suspension has been served.

How was the deck building?

Thanks for your reply Bomber. Good to know they'll start with games that count.

Deck is great now. Had some hurdles to overcome when I used dynamite to disassemble the old deck. Didn't care much for the color of the exterior anyways. Looking at it from a positive prospective, i created a new opening for a window (bonus I didn't count on) it was overdue and about time for a change. Just shingling the roof to the garden shed, and then i'm done.

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#73 Wanye
September 23 2013, 11:05AM
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"Until I could eat whole foods again I was losing weight faster then Gregor was losing his hair at the age of eighteen." HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

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#74 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 11:45AM
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DSF wrote:

When did I advocate for SMac?

The guy can't play hockey. At all.

Another dumb move by MacT in my opinion.

Setting that up as your straw man is not all that helpful.

Other more enlightened GM's have, instead placed an emphasis on team toughness and have been acquiring big, tough players who can play.

Despite what happened last night, the Leafs acquisition of David Clarkson is an excellent example of that.

MacT also apparently recognized Clarkson's value when trying to sign him in the offseason, but he failed and didn't produce an alternative while many existed in a the marketplace.

For example, Brendan Morrow signed with the Blues today for $1.5M.

Who do you think would add more value to the Oilers lineup this season...Morrow or Grebs, Larsen, Belov or Potter?

Is this a one-off or a conversation. Honest question?

If the latter, you should be able to discern that we are (and have been unless you suffer from some form of isolated amnesia) talking about the argument put forward by many, specifically here Struds, that having some kind of intimidation factor leads to real world results.

Those people need to back up their claims.

I never said you personally advocated for SMac. I said those people claiming x happens in the real world when y is present need to acknowledge that claim.

SMac is a huge blunder by MacT. On that we agree.

Clarkson was a huge blunder by MacT. On that we apparently disagree... though I'd wager in another context you'd acknowledge offering him a massive contract at his age and rate of production is a big mistake. The Leafs have a fine player, who is also eating too much cap hit and for too much term.

Morrow is too slow to do anything for this team. I'd happily take Larsen, Potter and Belov over him. Grebs... meh. toss-up.

Not sure why we are comparing D to Fs again though.

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#75 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
September 23 2013, 11:46AM
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Bill wrote:

Justice would be sidelining Kesler or one of the Sedins for a month or two.

That's not justice - just so you know.

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#76 michael
September 23 2013, 11:48AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

So, what is the fantasy here...

SMac is put on the ice against the Sedins.

If.. and this is a big if, he manages to catch up to one of them without the Oil getting scored on, he smashes one.

A Sedin is out for x amount of time.

SMac is suspended for x amount of time.

The Oilers don't improve having the Nucks lose a player. Probably lose the game. And now they are without their hulking beast.

You gain nothing other than violence and are back to square one.

RA. What impact has Ben Eager or Ryan Jones had on the lineup? Ryan Jones. Soft. Eager. Hard but lacks impact on the game consistently.

How do you see Smacks role on this team? A 82 game kinda guy? Not even close. He at best will be 20-25 game guy. 2-6 minutes a night. A guy who is known as a role player with whom the teams 6 million dollar men have a comfort level built in.

This is not about Smack scoring a single point on the season. Its about ensuring the team has a guy who will bring the hammer when needed to give space to those guys who need it.

Let Smack play his 2-6 minutes. Let Yak take the extra 4-5 minutes.

If I had my druthers I'll take Smack over RJ or BE. All day.Every Day.

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#77 Michael
September 23 2013, 11:50AM
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Lochenzo wrote:

I betcha that Oilers' lockerroom feels better after the pickup of MacIntyre. That alone makes this a good move.

Ask Wayne Gretzky why he wanted Marty MCSorley with him in LA.

Hall and Ebs will giving Smack their All Star cars.

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#78 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
September 23 2013, 11:54AM
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Michael wrote:

Ask Wayne Gretzky why he wanted Marty MCSorley with him in LA.

Hall and Ebs will giving Smack their All Star cars.

Those had better be Deloreans, because that argument belongs in the pre-1992 NHL.

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#79 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 12:01PM
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michael wrote:

RA. What impact has Ben Eager or Ryan Jones had on the lineup? Ryan Jones. Soft. Eager. Hard but lacks impact on the game consistently.

How do you see Smacks role on this team? A 82 game kinda guy? Not even close. He at best will be 20-25 game guy. 2-6 minutes a night. A guy who is known as a role player with whom the teams 6 million dollar men have a comfort level built in.

This is not about Smack scoring a single point on the season. Its about ensuring the team has a guy who will bring the hammer when needed to give space to those guys who need it.

Let Smack play his 2-6 minutes. Let Yak take the extra 4-5 minutes.

If I had my druthers I'll take Smack over RJ or BE. All day.Every Day.

If he's not even on the bench how is he deterring anything?

I want hockey players not facepunchers.

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#80 2004Z06
September 23 2013, 12:15PM
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Hey at least it may be a stop gap until a Colton Orr type of player comes available.

As for Kassian's comment. He is right, Macyntire's skating ability should be the furthest thing from his mind. Keeping that last tooth in his head however will be.

The only way this works is if Mac goes over the boards, grabs Kassian and pounds the crap out of him regardless of whether Kassian wants to go or not.

Take the instigator penalty, take the suspension. The rest of the league then knows that while it may not happen again, it CAN happen again. You only have to push the button once before people realize that you will if need be.

There is your nuclear deterrent.

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#81 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 12:38PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Seriously Rom....call it day on this one....you're rebuttals are getting weaker and it's getting difficult to stay respectful.

I'm not sure why anyone ought to be disrespectful.

If you disagree with me tell me why. If you are tired of the conversation, feel free to ignore it.

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#82 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 23 2013, 12:51PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

I'm not sure why anyone ought to be disrespectful.

If you disagree with me tell me why. If you are tired of the conversation, feel free to ignore it.

Look Rom....just go listen to the MacT press conference...and if you still don't get it ...that's ok....just at some point give it a rest.

I'm not trying to muzzle you..or assault your freedom of speech.....but I think you've made you're point....can you not just acknowledge that others have differing opinions....and move on?

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#83 Eastern Oil
September 23 2013, 12:58PM
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@Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

Give it a rest. Explain why you disagree with Rom's position instead of resorting to playground antics.

All I hear in the lower levels of discourse is cliches and catch words. Whether you disagree with either of their positions or not, at least they are having a decent discussion about it.

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#84 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 01:05PM
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DSF wrote:

Keep trying.

Thing is, Weiss laid a beating on Brown and no one stepped up to challenge Kassian because they would have received a beating too.

Adding a player or two who doesn't hide under a table the during the fight in the bar would make a significant difference whether or not you believe it.

Had someone made Kassian pay for his sins I would wager he would have "changed his routine".

Not sure what you are talking about.

The fight seemed pretty even with Brown maybe having a slight edge until he lost his footing

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dvPKN7vF164

Weise suffered a small cut it appears on the forehead. Not sure how getting hit in the head and having your opponent slip works out to "laid a beating."

The play by Kassian was so far behind the play that no one was around to step up to Kassian who was surrounded by refs by the time they arrived.

The damage was done and would be again. You can't deter someone like Kassian. You've already conceded that, though you now hold a different opinion.

What good would someone fighting Kassian after the fact accomplish? Gagner's still injured. Kassian will still be an idiot.

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#85 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 23 2013, 01:07PM
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Eastern Oil wrote:

@Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

Give it a rest. Explain why you disagree with Rom's position instead of resorting to playground antics.

All I hear in the lower levels of discourse is cliches and catch words. Whether you disagree with either of their positions or not, at least they are having a decent discussion about it.

That's my point EO.....I've explained in one or two posts how I respectfully disagree with his opinion....as have 20 other people.......but rambling on hammering the same point over and over again just because others disagree with you is not a higher level of discourse....

But good for you if you enjoy it.....I mean that sincerely.....understanding that there are those who like it....I will leave it alone.....

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#86 Romulus' Apotheosis
September 23 2013, 01:09PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Look Rom....just go listen to the MacT press conference...and if you still don't get it ...that's ok....just at some point give it a rest.

I'm not trying to muzzle you..or assault your freedom of speech.....but I think you've made you're point....can you not just acknowledge that others have differing opinions....and move on?

I think he made a big blunder.

I think that is a valid opinion.

I'm happy to concede people of good faith can hold divergent opinions. I think the best way to do so is to take those opinions seriously and challenge them where you disagree.

That doesn't mean you hold that person in contempt, or disrespect. It means you take them seriously, listen and try to learn.

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#87 pkam
September 23 2013, 01:17PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

So, the argument you agree with is "becoming" but hearing an alternative is "unbecoming"?

I guess those of us who don't agree should leave you to it? Is that more interesting?

Seems like a pretty bland way to run a comments section.

If you are just tired of the circles, I agree with you it is tedious. But the alternative is to stop reading. After all, we are all still on topic.

Give it up. It is meaningless to debate with them. They choose to believe in something that facts prove otherwise.

I have tried with facts as argument and ask him to counter that with facts and unable to do, he responded with "why do you think the players all stand up and hit the board with their sticks when a fight broke out".

It is like trying to tell someone who enjoys smoking that research has proved smoking is bad to his health and he asks you then why so many people still smoke.

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#88 pkam
September 23 2013, 02:34PM
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MessyEH! wrote:

You want a deterent. Gagner should get up and two hand crank Kassian in the throat. Yeah Gagner gets suspended. He'd be off injured anyway. But now he gets space. Now he gets left alone.

Or Eakins tells one of the tryouts to run the goalie in the next shift. "Chicken wing elbow as you cross the crease. "

Having a goon on the bench isn't a deterrent, having a couple players who will end your career is.

You think Kassian will stand there an let Gagner crank him in his throat?

The result is probably Gagner get smash at his jaw and end up with a more serious injury and out for even longer.

Just send a goon out the next game and get the Sedins and Kesler and make sure they will be out longer than Gagner. Don't even bother to answer any call to fight.

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#89 GVBlackhawk
September 23 2013, 03:58PM
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Gkpoil wrote:

Hopefully someone else steps up. Once the precedent is set, other teams will think twice. Coaches will not give their goons the green light to go after our stars if they know that Eakins will allow one of his players to seek retribution.

The oil had to do something and Smack is the best/ most viable option we have right now.

If he doesn't pan out, put him on waivers.

I agree that the Oilers had to do something. But I think that they needed to find a stop-gap center, not a guy who is going to play 2 minutes per night and fight the other team's goon.

Nothing could have prevented what happened to Sam Gagner. This is a knee-jerk reaction to a dumb play by an idiotic player.

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#90 David S
September 23 2013, 05:01PM
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MessyEH! wrote:

You want a deterent. Gagner should get up and two hand crank Kassian in the throat. Yeah Gagner gets suspended. He'd be off injured anyway. But now he gets space. Now he gets left alone.

Or Eakins tells one of the tryouts to run the goalie in the next shift. "Chicken wing elbow as you cross the crease. "

Having a goon on the bench isn't a deterrent, having a couple players who will end your career is.

What the Oilers didn't mention is that due to the impact from Kassian's being so powerful it broke Gagner's jaw it's very likely Sam also suffered a concussion in the process. He was probably half lights-out on the way to the bench, on top of being in agonizing pain.

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#91 OilFanInBC
September 23 2013, 09:33AM
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This just in from Bob Macenzie via Twitter,

“Is this good time to note EDM, which was looking for super heavyweight BEFORE last night, is now ramping up that search.”

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#92 Haajarverle
September 23 2013, 09:45AM
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I love all the people telling Struds how the game works. Give your head a shake. The impact of someone who will stand up for their teammate isn't something that is necessarily a 'demonstrable fact'. How do you measure the added confidence of your skill players? I think 'The Code:The unwritten rules of Fighting and retaliation in the NHl' should be required pre reading for this discussion.

And I too miss Peckham for this. The fastest you ever saw him skate was when he was flying in from the blue line with gloves off after someone took a run at the kids. And yes, I know he wasn't a perfect defenseman. I really wish we'd put more effort into his development instead of keeping below average guys like Potter.

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#93 madjam
September 23 2013, 09:48AM
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Oilers sent a clear message to opposition again by last games antics . The Oilers can take more , but still sadly lack defending their own or instigating/implimating a physical game . Run the Oilers and throw them off their skill game will still run true again this year with present makeup . Management does not give this situation it's due diligence . We need two deterrents , not just one because of our makeup and nature of players . Brown tried but did not fare well against Weise . Kassian we have no answer for , and may further injure another player trying to do so . MacT. was supposed to address this gap , but still has not succeeded in doing so . Till then , our players are like sitting ducks to opposition toughness . Most teams have depth at functional toughness or better , we sadly lack far behind all the others . We need more toughness still to neutralize how teams continually play us . If not we are headed back to cellar of league until we do . I believe MacT. and Eakins are sadly mistaken if they feel present core can overcome it's softness label .

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#94 bdiddy18
September 23 2013, 09:51AM
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At the time of the injury - and in the replay it looked like a inadvertant stick to the face which would mean some lost teeth.

thats how both team reacted to the play. If a more serious injury was known I'm sure even Ryan Smyth would have engaged Kassian to answer the bell.

Problem with a getting a guy who has cement hands for goal scoring but very useful for pounding a guy's head for retribution is that he probably also has cement legs and is a major liability out there (Steve MacIntyre) which means each time he is dressed you are literally playing one man short for the game.

And who cares about the meathead that hurts one of our players... I'd rather man up fight your own battles and don't take it out on that guy - send a message run their goalie!hit their top 6! in this game - hit a sedin.. you don't need a heavyweight to hit a sedin.

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#95 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
September 23 2013, 10:08AM
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Rotten Ron wrote:

That was one hit. Watch any other team in the league and let me know when you see anyone else get pushed around for 60 minutes in their own building like we seen saturday. You think playing a bunch of push overs doesnt give other teams a huge boost of confidence and affect their play positively?

People who have played the game know that you're right Ron.

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#96 Rama Lama
September 23 2013, 10:09AM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

"I think the issue is with the lack of overall toughness in the Oilers lineup. Players like Kassian have no fear in playing the Oilers extra tough. Who outside of Mike Brown can stand up to a guy like Kassian or Andrew Alberts? Both these guys were running around Saturday night in Edmonton like there was no reason to be afraid! They're big guys, but nothing to lose sleep over unless a team like the Oilers doesn't have guys to match up to them with."

I honestly understand the sentiment here. It's a conventional wisdom that's worn more than a few tires down past all-weather conditions.

But, it is complete nonsense. All one need do is watch hockey to understand that the crippling injuries suffered by freak accident or horrible goonery have nothing to do with whether the offending team/player concerns themselves/himself with the tough guys opposite.

Smac prevented nothing when he was here.

As someone at LT's mentioned: Chara, Lucic and Thornton... not one of them prevented Savard's injury.

This never works.

By all means acquire an actual hockey player who can play with an edge. By all means.

But don't delude yourself into thinking this will prevent injury or goonery. This is simply wishful thinking.

Hey Mr. Know it All.........since you know everything about hockey how about how about asking the players how they feel about having some deterrence?

I suspect all of them would endorse having Steve Mac back!

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#97 Spydyr
September 23 2013, 10:16AM
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Say you have 30 million in gold (the Kids) 5 x 6=30 million by the time the all sign wouldn't you protect it?

Or would you rather have someone steal it from you?

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#98 Zamboni Driver
September 23 2013, 10:21AM
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@Romulus' Apotheosis

Absolutely right.

Oilers had two great heavyweights in the past. When they fought they were the best fighters.

PROBLEM

Georges didn't like it, and had no clue when to do it.

Macintyre is not a hockey player.

But alas, the "braintrust" with absolutely no fresh ideas goes back to Macintyre.

Oh boy.

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#99 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
September 23 2013, 10:23AM
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DSF wrote:

Ryan Rishaug ‏@TSNRyanRishaug 1m Oil claim Mcintyre

@Bob_Stauffer Steve MacIntyre is down to 245 pounds and in great shape. But I don't see the #Oilers claiming him on waivers

Rare miss for Bob on that one.

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#100 Spydyr
September 23 2013, 10:31AM
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Perhaps if they tell big Mac to destroy anyone who even looks at the kids sideways the way Semenko protected Gretzky this might work.

Take the instigator penalty take the suspensions just don't take any cheap shots on the kids. They bleed you bleed, more.

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