GDB 55.0: BACK-TO-BACK ON EVEN GROUND

Jason Gregor
January 27 2014 01:54PM

For the second time this season the Oilers will face a team where both of them of are playing on consecutive nights. The Oilers lost 5-4 to the Blackhawks earlier this season. Last night while the Oilers were dominating the Predators 5-1, the Canucks defeated the Coyotes 5-4 in OT, and tonight the Oilers will look to improve their ugly record in back-to-back games.

The Oilers are 1-5-2 in the second game of back-to-backs while the Canucks are 5-4-2. Dallas Eakins will play the odds and give Ben Scrivens the night off, despite a solid performance last night, and start Ilya Bryzgalov. I understand why he is going with Bryzgalov, most goalies Sv% is lower the second night, but I thought he might roll the dice and go with Scrivens.

Scrivens played back-to-back once this year with LA, winning both games and posting a shutout on the second night. Last season Scrivens played consecutive games once, shutting out Florida the first night, but then he allowed 4 goals on 13 shots in 46 minutes vs. Tampa the following night.

Those are the only two times in his career he's started back-to-back, and while the odds say it is better to give your goalie a rest on the 2nd night, I would have went with Scrivens, mainly due to Bryzgalov's brutal play so far in 2014.

In six starts in 2014 he is 1-4-1 and his numbers in those starts aren't very good:

January 03rd vs. Ana... 5-2 L with a .865Sv%
January 05th vs. TB..... 5-3 W with a .889Sv%
January 07th vs STL.... 5-2 L with a .862Sv%
January 14th vs. DALL.5-2 L with a .862Sv%
January 18th vs WGP.. 3-2 L with a .923Sv%
January 24th vs. PHO. 4-3 L with a .862Sv%

He has an ugly .877 Sv% in his last six games, and he needs to find some consistency in his game. I haven't seen anything from Bryzgalov that would suggest the Oilers will be interested in re-signing him, and if he has aspirations of signing with another team in the summer he needs to improve.

He will need to be much better tonight if the Oilers want to win two straight for the first time in a month.

While Eakins is playing the odds, the Canucks will start Roberto Luongo for the second straight game.

Luongo has started both games of a back-to-back twice this season, and he's 1-1 and played great in both. He had a solid .931 SV% in a 2-1 loss to Chicago and a sparkling .951SV% in a 6-2 drubbing of the Bruins. 

It is interesting to note that Luongo and his back up, Eddie Lack, have almost identical number, yet the Canucks will go with the veteran. 

In 37 starts Luongo has a .922Sv% and a 2.23 GAA.
In 20 appearances Lack has a .922Sv% and a 2.18 GAA.

With Chicago coming to town on Wednesday, I wonder if the Canucks feel tonight is a game they must win, thus going with their starter? Prior to this season the last time Luongo started on consecutive nights was November 20th and 21st of 2010. He got pulled the first game vs. Chicago, and then lost the next night vs. Phoenix and both games his sv% was below .890.

Under Tortorella he has played very well in the 2nd game, albeit a very small sample size of two games, so it will be interesting to see which coach looks better after the game. Eakins for playing the odds or the Canucks for going with their starter.

LINEUP...

Hall-RNH-Eberle
Perron-Gagner-Yakupov
Hendricks-Gordon-Jones
Gazdic-Smyth-Joensuu

Marincin-Petry
N.Schultz-J.Schultz
Belov-Potter

Bryzgalov

Smyth's line had a very strong game last night. They were very good on the cycle and gave the Oilers an early boost on the J.Schultz goal. We'll see how often Eakins uses them tonight, but if they get off to a good start he'd be wise to give them 8-10 min of ES time.

Martin Marincin continues to play very well. He is poised, smart and usually he has very good positioning. It was only a few months ago that people were ripping Stu MacGregor for his draft picks outside of the top-ten. I've mentioned it many times, but it is worth repeating, you usually wait five years after a draft class to accurately evaluate picks outside of the first round. If Marincin keeps playing like this, and Pitlick keeps developing, the 2010 class could turn out to be outstanding. We'll see.

QUICK HITS...

  • I asked Smyth his thoughts if MacTavish approached him about a trade. "It is out of my control, because I don't have a no-trade clause, but if he approached me I'd listen. It would be tough, because I love playing in Edmonton, but..," said Smyth.

    In the past few weeks I've exchanged texts with a few GMs and scouts and asked their thoughts on Smyth.  "He could add some depth in your bottom six. He can kill penalties and he is still good in front of the net on the PP. I think he's better when you monitor his icetime," said one scout.
     
  • Smyth should benefit nicely from the Olympic break. He'll have a chance to rest, and I believe a few teams will inquire about him. Last year many scoffed when the Blackhawks picked up Michal Handzus at the deadline, but he ended up playing top-six minutes for them in the playoffs and was a valuable asset during the Cup run.

    I don't see Smyth playing top-six minutes, but teams love experience and guys who know how to compete every night. Smyth does that, and I could see him being moved before the deadline likely for a mid-round pick. 
     
  • A player people need to go watch and potential free agents....Read here.

TONIGHT...

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers struggles in back-to-back games continue with a 4-2 loss.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Eberle continues his recent hot streak and scores on the PP.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Early in the second period Bieksa fires a shot from the point and it deflects off a stick into Zack Kassian's grill. He is bloodied and as he skates back to the Canucks bench, Sam Gagner stands up on the Oilers bench, stares at Kassian but says nothing and sits down. David Perron leans over to talk with him, and you can see Gagner say, "Karma."

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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#1 Ales Hallsky
January 27 2014, 01:57PM
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Yay...pffftt

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#2 book¡e
January 27 2014, 01:59PM
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Starting Bryz is the right call mostly because Scrivens is a young goalie you hope to re-sign here. So you want to protect him and give him opportunities to succeed.

Second, given the stats on goalies playing back to back, I would suggest that we will get a similar level of goaltending from Bryz at present as a back to back Scrivens. If the two points were critically important to the team, I would go with Scrivens, but they are not.

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#3 Mason Storm
January 27 2014, 02:19PM
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Bryz has been consistently awful. He's not even worth giving starts anymore unless they are delibarately tanking. It's obvious he has nothing left and needs a stellar d in front of him.

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#4 27Ginge
January 27 2014, 02:20PM
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GDP: Oilers win 5-4 in OT. OGDP: Smitty gets two goals, none of which touch his stick. NSOGDP: Perron stirs things up in front of Luongo and Bieksa summons the courage to step outside his weight class and fight Gagner and his busted jaw. TSN and CBC rave about Bieksa's leadership calling this the second gutsiest move of his Hall of Fame career next to grabbing Westgarth and letting him go to fight Smid.

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#5 They're $hittie
January 27 2014, 02:23PM
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The top two lines always stink on a back to back when they play well. I wish he would shake things up for these games instead of splitting them up when in a slump.

Still waiting for the day when I see the 3 first overalls play on a line.

Have you ever seen a line drafted so low. 1-1-1

Heatley Thornton Marleau 1-2-2

Oilers could actually soon have 1-1-1 7-1 (2)

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#6 Ed in Edmonton
January 27 2014, 02:31PM
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"Last night while the Oilers were dominating the Predators 5-1..."

Getting outshot 35 to 28 is dominating? The Oil capitalized on their chances and the Preds didn't. I didn't see any sustained domination.

Agree that Bryz hasn't been good enough. The Oil management (and I use the term loosely) need to plan what they want to do with the of goaltenders for the rest of the year. I would think they would need to confirm if either one of the two are worth giving an offer to after this season. I assume the Oil will need to go whale hunting for a real goaltender and these two are auditioning for the backup role. If this is the case then playing them both until they make up their minds makes sense.

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#7 Dog Train
January 27 2014, 02:34PM
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The back-to-back is not an excuse tonight because the 'Nucks also played last night. We were ran out of the building both times that we played in Vancouver this season so let's change that tonight. The Canucks are very beatable but we haven't matched up well with them so far this season.

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#8 GDP
January 27 2014, 02:37PM
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Super Obvious Game Day Prediction - Kassian takes his extra small balls to the bench every time he sees Gadzic take a shift.

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#9 GK1980
January 27 2014, 02:43PM
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LOL, yeah because it's a back to back they are gonna struggle. That's hilarious! Because that's why they lose tonight........

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#10 Jonathan Willis
January 27 2014, 02:44PM
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It only makes sense to give the second half of back-to-backs to the No. 2 goalie: he has to play some time and it might as well be when the starter is tired.

Good on Eakins for following the evidence.

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#11 A-Mc
January 27 2014, 02:46PM
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GDP: Oilers Lose 2-0.
OGDP: All that the Oilers defense did to excite fans seems to have slipped from their game. Fans are left wondering how the heck a team can play in such a bi-polar fashion.
NSOGDP: Yakupov scores a goal by punching a puck out of the air. It's disallowed but that doesnt stop Yak from celebrating like it was a Stanley Cup winning goal. When interviewed about it afterwards, Yak says "Puck go in Net. I score da goals. Whats problem?"

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#12 Tikkanese
January 27 2014, 02:48PM
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I'd love to see Smyth win a Cup but he should retire an Oiler. Tough call.

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#13 A-Mc
January 27 2014, 02:50PM
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Tikkanese wrote:

I'd love to see Smyth win a Cup but he should retire an Oiler. Tough call.

Hire him as an offensive coach to teach proper board play and play around the net.

When the Oilers win the stanley cup in 6 years, Smytty will get his name on that cup as an Oiler.

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#14 mayorblaine
January 27 2014, 02:54PM
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the break will be a critical juncture for MacT. for some players their value will not be higher than it is at trade deadline. teams may pay some more for a chance.

although not the be all end all, this is important test for MacT to begin to define the team he says he wants.

i would've started Scrivens. he's the only you may re-sign. so why not see. what's to lose?

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#16 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
January 27 2014, 02:54PM
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Interesting segue, JG. I wonder if MacT will be able to sign some FA Eskies in the offseason.

I guess it can't hurt.

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#17 Dave
January 27 2014, 03:03PM
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OGDP - the game is over before 9pm MST and I willingly give my wife the remote to watch the Bachelorette. At least there are a few players on that tv show worth watching.

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#18 Tikkanese
January 27 2014, 03:04PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

If you go by the stats that a goalie drops .20 on the 2nd night, then Scrivens goes from .930 to .910, which is still much better than Bryz who is .901.

I see the logic why you do it, but when the back up is playing as bad as Bryz I could see why a coach would go against the stats.

We also need to find out if Scrivens can be a #1 or not. We already know he can give you a good game, we knew that before the trade. Now we need to know if he can handle the workload.

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#19 MessyEH
January 27 2014, 03:10PM
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Spaceman Buzz should rebound tonight.

Gadzic pummels Kassian. Hendricks takes him in the next round.

Gagner is about due for a fight.

Actually I hope Tonight is a chippy one. If you can't beat Em, Beat Em.

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#20 Johnnydapunk
January 27 2014, 03:14PM
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The situation with Smyth is perhaps a bit difficult, I guess if I was playing "GM" I would ask him if he wants to be traded to a Cup contender just for the chance and sign him next season so he would be a glorified rental, let him finish his career as an Oiler.

He isn't a top 6 anymore for sure, but I think Smyth is good enough for a roster spot and I realise that sentiment is not an ingredient to make a winning club, but he is the type of player that is an Oiler true and true.

I may get trashed for saying this, but I can't think of any other player who represents the Oil and Edmonton like he does, he is a hardworking player who doesn't p*ss about and just gets the job done, he plays for Canada at the drop of a hat, and is refreshingly old school. I have gained a lot of respect for Mullet over the years. It's also a massive bonus in my books that he requested a trade from LA to Edmonton, I mean name a player that has ever requested a trade to Edmonton!

I would let him make the decision on his future, I think he deserves it.

Saying all that and guessing the way 6Rings works, he will be traded for a 4th round pick and not offered a new contract just because...

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#21 Ed in Edmonton
January 27 2014, 03:15PM
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Tikkanese wrote:

We also need to find out if Scrivens can be a #1 or not. We already know he can give you a good game, we knew that before the trade. Now we need to know if he can handle the workload.

It would be a BOLD move to stake next year on Scrivens regardless of how ell he plays on the last 30.

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#22 pkam
January 27 2014, 03:16PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

If you go by the stats that a goalie drops .20 on the 2nd night, then Scrivens goes from .930 to .910, which is still much better than Bryz who is .901.

I see the logic why you do it, but when the back up is playing as bad as Bryz I could see why a coach would go against the stats.

Bryz's number will not change unless we play him.

Are we going to play Scrivens until his number drop below 920 and only on a back to back game will we start Bryz? Or we are going to shut down Bryz for the rest of the season?

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#23 Johnnydapunk
January 27 2014, 03:21PM
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Tikkanese wrote:

We also need to find out if Scrivens can be a #1 or not. We already know he can give you a good game, we knew that before the trade. Now we need to know if he can handle the workload.

I don't know how much we will learn about Scrivens over the next 30 games, I can't believe that I am agreeing on "You know nothing, you have never played in the NHL" Kypreos, but he suggested that playing 30 pressure free games doesn't really say much as to if he is the guy who can handle a 50 game workload with playoff making pressure. Even if he does play like a god, who knows if he will even sign here, though I don't think he is good enough to be that picky if he is looking for a Number One job. I think he is suited to a 1A role at best, but we will see.

Looking at Capgeek, it's a buyers market for Goalies this summer, so hopefully the Oil can find a decent 1-2 punch.

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#24 pkam
January 27 2014, 03:21PM
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Johnnydapunk wrote:

The situation with Smyth is perhaps a bit difficult, I guess if I was playing "GM" I would ask him if he wants to be traded to a Cup contender just for the chance and sign him next season so he would be a glorified rental, let him finish his career as an Oiler.

He isn't a top 6 anymore for sure, but I think Smyth is good enough for a roster spot and I realise that sentiment is not an ingredient to make a winning club, but he is the type of player that is an Oiler true and true.

I may get trashed for saying this, but I can't think of any other player who represents the Oil and Edmonton like he does, he is a hardworking player who doesn't p*ss about and just gets the job done, he plays for Canada at the drop of a hat, and is refreshingly old school. I have gained a lot of respect for Mullet over the years. It's also a massive bonus in my books that he requested a trade from LA to Edmonton, I mean name a player that has ever requested a trade to Edmonton!

I would let him make the decision on his future, I think he deserves it.

Saying all that and guessing the way 6Rings works, he will be traded for a 4th round pick and not offered a new contract just because...

Here is the problem. If he didn't win a cup this year, are we going to repeat the same next year, and the year after until he wins a cup or no team is interested in him anymore?

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#26 Brock Whitten
January 27 2014, 03:35PM
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Mason Storm wrote:

Bryz has been consistently awful. He's not even worth giving starts anymore unless they are delibarately tanking. It's obvious he has nothing left and needs a stellar d in front of him.

I wouldn't give up on Bryz that quickly. Keep in mind he hadn't played all season prior to signing with the Oilers. and before stating that he needs stellar D we should probably see him with NHL caliber D.

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#27 billythebullet
January 27 2014, 03:37PM
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Looking at our starting linups, is it just me or does our third line look like a really good 4th line? Anyways, it would be nice to beat the 'nucks tonight. Go oilers!

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#28 pkam
January 27 2014, 03:37PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Why do they have to play Bryz?

He isn't the answer as a starter moving forward. Look at his last three seasons, his best days are behind him.

They can play him sometime on the road, and just because you play him doesn't mean he will automatically improve.

I didn't say he will improve because we play him. I just say his number will not change if we didn't play him. It may get better, or it may get worse.

But if you think we have to play him sometime on the road, then why not tonight? It is a road game tonight, isn't it?

If we don't play Bryz on a back to back when Scrivens number is likely to drop to 910, why do we want to start him when Scrivens number is much better than 910?

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#29 Tikkanese
January 27 2014, 03:43PM
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Johnnydapunk wrote:

I don't know how much we will learn about Scrivens over the next 30 games, I can't believe that I am agreeing on "You know nothing, you have never played in the NHL" Kypreos, but he suggested that playing 30 pressure free games doesn't really say much as to if he is the guy who can handle a 50 game workload with playoff making pressure. Even if he does play like a god, who knows if he will even sign here, though I don't think he is good enough to be that picky if he is looking for a Number One job. I think he is suited to a 1A role at best, but we will see.

Looking at Capgeek, it's a buyers market for Goalies this summer, so hopefully the Oil can find a decent 1-2 punch.

No, it won't be the end all be all answer if he plays most of the rest of the way. That is not what I meant. But we don't even know if Scrivens is a 1B yet. All he's proven is he's a decent backup. He hasn't even proven he can push the #1 yet, i.e. making him a 1B, let alone him being a 1A. Playing him in back to backs as well as most of the rest of the way will help answer those questions.

That way they may not have to give a Hiller or Halak 8 million per(might be what it takes to get a legit starter here). Then however it plays out with Scrivens as being a 1A or 1B, they can sign the 1A for 4 mill per and whoever the 1B is for less. That's if Scrivens proves himself to be at least a 1B and if the Oilers want to go with a 1A/1B combo instead of a legit starter/barely plays backup combo. Since the Oilers traded for Scrivens, it appears they want to take the 1A/1B route to me.

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#30 Brock Whitten
January 27 2014, 03:45PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Why do they have to play Bryz?

He isn't the answer as a starter moving forward. Look at his last three seasons, his best days are behind him.

They can play him sometime on the road, and just because you play him doesn't mean he will automatically improve.

Ok, lets take a look at Bryzgalov's record the last few seasons...

(2011-12) 19-17-13 (lockout year) (2011-12) 33-6-7 (2010-11) 36-20-10 (2009-10) 42-20-6

Looks pretty stellar to me. Not saying Bryzgalov is our #1 but it might be worth giving him an opportunity to get his game back if the price is reasonable before counting him out.

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#31 Randaman
January 27 2014, 03:47PM
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Johnnydapunk wrote:

I don't know how much we will learn about Scrivens over the next 30 games, I can't believe that I am agreeing on "You know nothing, you have never played in the NHL" Kypreos, but he suggested that playing 30 pressure free games doesn't really say much as to if he is the guy who can handle a 50 game workload with playoff making pressure. Even if he does play like a god, who knows if he will even sign here, though I don't think he is good enough to be that picky if he is looking for a Number One job. I think he is suited to a 1A role at best, but we will see.

Looking at Capgeek, it's a buyers market for Goalies this summer, so hopefully the Oil can find a decent 1-2 punch.

Unfortunately the buyers market is for everywhere else but Edmonton. There will have to be major overpayment for us to get a true #1 Goaltender or a #1 defenceman for that matter. Trades or grow your own are the only options available to us, especially with 6 Rings at the helm. Sad but True!

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#32 Mason Storm
January 27 2014, 03:49PM
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Brock Whitten wrote:

Ok, lets take a look at Bryzgalov's record the last few seasons...

(2011-12) 19-17-13 (lockout year) (2011-12) 33-6-7 (2010-11) 36-20-10 (2009-10) 42-20-6

Looks pretty stellar to me. Not saying Bryzgalov is our #1 but it might be worth giving him an opportunity to get his game back if the price is reasonable before counting him out.

Two seasons behind a stingy Phoenix d and then two seasons behind a leaky philly d. Two season of above average save percentage and two below. If he has a good team in front of him he's good. The Oilers are not even near good.

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#33 bazmagoo
January 27 2014, 03:55PM
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@Tikkanese

Don't think there is anything stopping Smyth from resigning here in the summer if he's shipped at the deadline. If he wants the chance to win a cup and that chance is facilitated to him at the deadline, why would he hold a grudge against the Oilers? If he doesn't want that shot, then the Oilers shouldn't trade him.

Signing Smyth should be a pretty low priority though in my opinion, he's never been great defensively 5 on 5 and he just doesn't have the wheels anymore. It's weird that he does well on the PK but he still doesn't back check with any real urgency, ever. If he's resigned it should be as a 4th liner or 13-14th forward.

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#34 bazmagoo
January 27 2014, 03:56PM
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If I see Bryz throw up his hands again when a goal goes in after a defensive error, I think I'm going to lose it.

Wonder how he would react if his defensemen threw up their hands when he let in a bad goal? Bad Bryz!

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#35 Tikkanese
January 27 2014, 03:59PM
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bazmagoo wrote:

Don't think there is anything stopping Smyth from resigning here in the summer if he's shipped at the deadline. If he wants the chance to win a cup and that chance is facilitated to him at the deadline, why would he hold a grudge against the Oilers? If he doesn't want that shot, then the Oilers shouldn't trade him.

Signing Smyth should be a pretty low priority though in my opinion, he's never been great defensively 5 on 5 and he just doesn't have the wheels anymore. It's weird that he does well on the PK but he still doesn't back check with any real urgency, ever. If he's resigned it should be as a 4th liner or 13-14th forward.

He's still good at the PK because he's been doing it forever. PK is more about positioning and willingness to pay a price than it is about speed. You only need to show speed on the PK if you are out of position, or getting a very rare breakaway.

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#36 mlselli
January 27 2014, 04:00PM
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The only thing I want to see tonight is Kassian getting his bell rung. I don't care who does it, but somebody needs to knock that a55hole. OMG, to have that happen in his own barn would be epic. Go Oilers!!!

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#37 bazmagoo
January 27 2014, 04:03PM
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@Tikkanese

Definitely don't disagree he's a valuable player on the PK, but he's not sound defensively 5 on 5 and likely never will be. There is many an occasion where he loses his man 5 on 5 and it results in a scoring chance.

I edited my previous post to say I would like to see him resign with Edmonton, but for 4th line money. He's not worth more than that even though I love the guy. Cold hard truth, but hockey is a cold game sometimes.

*edit* Misread your post, I see now you were agreeing with me, haha.

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#38 Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate
January 27 2014, 04:03PM
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I would LOVE to see

Gadzic Versus Kassian

But Zack is chicken

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#39 Tikkanese
January 27 2014, 04:06PM
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Tikkanese wrote:

I'd love to see Smyth win a Cup but he should retire an Oiler. Tough call.

If they do trade him, I hope it is to a top contender like the Ducks or Bruins and not to someone trying to squeek into the playoffs.

How cool would it be to see Smytty passing the Cup to Iginla? I've always hated the Flames but that would be pretty cool to see.

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#40 pkam
January 27 2014, 04:08PM
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Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate wrote:

I would LOVE to see

Gadzic Versus Kassian

But Zack is chicken

We can force it by running Luongo. But we have to wait until the next game against them. We will need to keep Luongo healthy for the Olympics.

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#41 Zarny
January 27 2014, 04:12PM
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I understand the stats but would rather have seen Scrivens. Maybe he's part of solution. Play him till he drops. We know Bryz isn't coming back.

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#42 gus1000
January 27 2014, 04:23PM
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bazmagoo wrote:

If I see Bryz throw up his hands again when a goal goes in after a defensive error, I think I'm going to lose it.

Wonder how he would react if his defensemen threw up their hands when he let in a bad goal? Bad Bryz!

Tough to blame a guy for trying to play his position only to get strung out every night. Unfortunately the numbers that Bryz has to stand by, save %, GAA and wins and losses are contributed to by the poor team play in front of him. And if anyone thinks there isn't a collective shrug on the bench from his teammates when he lets in a poor goal, I have ocean front property in Saskatchewan to sell you. He has 20 sets of burning eyes on him when that happens.

Bryz was outstanding in Winnipeg, and Petry blew that game up for him, but the numbers show a loss and 3 goals against. Even Phoenix, where a couple of tipped / screened shots weren't on him, he still gets the blame. I think only one was a whiff he should have had, and he held the fort the rest of the way.

Let's face it, Edmonton is where goalies come to die, or lose money on their next contract.

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#43 Bloodsweatandoil
January 27 2014, 04:32PM
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Given the current track record of the Oilers, the odds are against them tonight for a win.

If they lose, I just do not want it to be a flat loss, so to speak. If they are pushing the Canucks around, giving a good fight and standing up for themselves; that type of loss I can swallow easier than the majority of the losses this year that have been quite the opposite.

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#44 A-Mc
January 27 2014, 04:36PM
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Ive been going back and forth with JWillis on twitter about this goalie Back to back thing.

His position is that the stats show that when the same goalie plays in game 2 of a Back to back, their sv % decreases by atleast 0.010 (ie: .920 down to .910). He's looking at numbers and making a goalie conclusion.

My position is that those numbers aren't totally owned by the Goalie. None of the Math involved in calculating that 0.010 sv% drop has anything to do with how good or how poorly the team infront of him is playing. In a vacuum, yes the goalie would be 100% responsible, but IMO the game of hockey has far too many elements involved to simply peg a lower sv % on the goalie.

In the end, the %'s are so slim that i would still play Scrivens (if he feels good) as reward for playing so well last night. If you play well, you're in - this would be my governing rule.

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#45 gravis_82
January 27 2014, 04:37PM
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Not going with the same goalie on back to back nights is something that the majority of NHL coaches do, regardless of reasons. Normally this wouldn't even been a talking point even if the backup is horrible. Back to back games is essentially why you have a back-up goalie in the first place. If Eakins hadn't mentioned that he was listening to analytics's guys when choosing Brys to start, I doubt you would have even mentioned it. This is a story 3 years from now when Eakins has shown he does this every time, then you can start comparing 'analytics' vs. 'gut feeling'. Assessing and/or judging either method basd simply on this game (which is how your article came across to me) is meaningless and un-insightful.

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#46 A-Mc
January 27 2014, 04:39PM
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What web sites are people using for hockey stats for things like Sv %'s in game 1 vs game 2?

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#47 BIGDAWG
January 27 2014, 04:43PM
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mlselli wrote:

The only thing I want to see tonight is Kassian getting his bell rung. I don't care who does it, but somebody needs to knock that a55hole. OMG, to have that happen in his own barn would be epic. Go Oilers!!!

Shoulda been done 3 games ago... As much as i agree with you.. i seriously doubt anything will happen.. the "fight" just isnt in this... "team".. which i dont think it is right now..

trust me, that was heart breaking to write

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#48 outdoorzguy
January 27 2014, 04:46PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

It only makes sense to give the second half of back-to-backs to the No. 2 goalie: he has to play some time and it might as well be when the starter is tired.

Good on Eakins for following the evidence.

Are you kidding me?

Scrivens is 28 years old.

He can't play back to back?

Is he out of shape?

What, he got jet lag on the flight to Vancouver?

Give me a break, everyone looks for excuses to justify stupid coaching decisions. Let this guy play into the #1 role. Stats...what a load of crap!! The only stat that matters is wins and Scrivens gives us the best chance at winning. Ryan Smyth plays back to back and he's twice Scrivens age. The only player who sits out regularly is Yakapov.

No wonder this organization is the toilet of the NHL.

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#49 Johnnydapunk
January 27 2014, 04:50PM
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pkam wrote:

Here is the problem. If he didn't win a cup this year, are we going to repeat the same next year, and the year after until he wins a cup or no team is interested in him anymore?

He is 37, this is his last chance I think. I don't say let him dictate his terms but give him some options. I don't know him personally so I can only speculate, but it depends on what he wants. If he has that desire to try to win a Cup, then let him go and try and trade him for a draft pick or future considerations and offer him a contract in the summer. If he feels that the good ship Stanley has passed and he wants to play out as an Oiler, give him another deal, I wouldn't sign him to a 5 year contract, but I would go for a 2 year deal on low-ish money, or one year deals on a rotating basis.

I think he has a few good years left for him as long as his minutes are "monitored" as he hasn't had any major injury concerns so for a 37 year old that gets cross checked in the back, takes pucks off his body and has never scored a goal farther away that a foot from the crease, you have that 3-4 line player who can get the dirty goals in the power play and play the "garbage" minutes.

Bottom line is that he gets the choice, I don't think too many players in the NHL are deserving of that, but he is one of them.

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#50 Gored 1970
January 27 2014, 05:00PM
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I hope Gadzic doesn't fight Kassian because if he looses the Oilers will be the laughing stock of the league and will have nothing for the rest of the year. At least now the Oiler nation can thump their chests and make threats but if Gadzic looses there's nowhere to hide.

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