SAM GAGNER'S NAME "OUT THERE"

Lowetide
January 04 2014 05:10PM

During tonight's Hotstove portion of the HNIC pre-game, Elliotte Friedman told the nation "Sam Gagner's name is out there" and suggested the Oilers would find him a place he'd be comfortable with playing (if a transaction were to be completed). It sounds very much like the team and player have decided a move could be made if it fits for all sides, although specifics weren't covered in the brief report.

LATE SEPTEMBER (21st)

Gagner's season went sideways in a hurry one autumn night in Vancouver, and the impact has been felt by player and team all season long. I don't for a minute believe that the Kassian stick incident led us to this day, but it probably hurried it along.

Bottom line: Craig MacTavish has to make plans for next year. He has to ask questions:

  1. Is Dallas Eakins the coach of next year's team?
  2. Do the Oilers need to improve up the middle?
  3. Has Mark Arcobello done enough to make Gagner expendable?
  4. Will the organization have the same number of similar talents in the top 6F next season?
  5. Can they get value for Gagner?
  6. Is Gagner a part of the future with Eakins in charge?

Those are tough questions, but the news today suggests that they exist in the organization and Sam Gagner (who perhaps Gagner has questions about his future as an Oiler) may be heading out of Edmonton during the season.

What does it all mean? Well, you never get full value in these situations, so prepare to be disappointed with the return. On the other hand, the Oilers will be going to market next summer with more money and will very likely arrive at training camp next fall with a bigger lineup.

We wait.

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on Team 1260.
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#1 I Remember the Orange Jerseys
January 04 2014, 05:16PM
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...and wait, and wait.

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#2 Chet134
January 04 2014, 05:22PM
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Crickets crickets

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#3 CMG30
January 04 2014, 05:24PM
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I don't see a move till trade deadline day.

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#4 Tuningout
January 04 2014, 05:25PM
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Well this should be fun. Time to trade another useful NHL player for more hope and potential. Let me guess.... Gagner for some current oil king ?

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#5 Jodes
January 04 2014, 05:25PM
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Well just when I thought I couldn't post anymore, I decide to come back, so here we go. There are too many what if's in this situation.. Was Sam "rushed" back? Did the coaching staff expect way to much from him when he returned? Has he like many on the team just stopped listening to Eakins?

Or maybe the rumour all those years ago of him wanting out have just finally come to fruition?

Sad to say, but I think Sam Gagner (apart from one night against Chicago) is the 2nd coming of Mike York.. Lots of potential, but just not enough to get over the next hump, regardless of what team you play for.

If he is traded, I don't think it will work out for either team.

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#6 Kr55
January 04 2014, 05:26PM
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What happened to MacT's gentlemen's agreement that he never should have made? I'm very down on Gagner's game, but MacT made his agreement to not trade him public.

That said, I guess he did tell Krueger he would find him coaching help and then told the media how Krueger is not at fault for last season and he needs to be given good players and then stabbed him in the back to jump on a total fraud manufactured by the Toronto Hype Machine.

This Oilers management group has a pretty lengthy history of backstabbing and having no class. People think it's the weather that scares teams away. That a tiny bit of it, but that's nothing compared to the bad reputation of Lowe and MacT. I would never want to work for them either.

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#7 D
January 04 2014, 05:30PM
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Obviously I'm not the GM, so my opinion is about as valuable as a bucket of John Nance Garner's Vice Presidency. But here goes:

Is Dallas Eakins the coach of next year's team?

Man I hope not.

Do the Oilers need to improve up the middle?

Yes.

Has Mark Arcobello done enough to make Gagner expendable?

Mark needs to show he can perform consistently at the level he started with this season. If he can do it for two seasons, then the answer would trend towards yes.

Will the organization have the same number of similar talents in the top 6F next season?

Not if making the playoffs is their goal.

Can they get value for Gagner?

No. But I bet Oil management don't overvalue him now as much as they did over the summer.

Is Gagner a part of the future with Eakins in charge?

I don't believe that the Edmonton Oilers can win the Stanley Cup with Gagner as the #2 centre.

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#8 Walter Sobchak
January 04 2014, 05:30PM
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No free agent worth a damn will come here after witnessing the mess that is the Oilers.

As for Gagner, if a legit two way center isn't coming back in this deal then why make it?

So Gagner fetches a Gardnier or like type player who fills a role on the back end, it still leaves a gaping hole at center, unless the Oilers do plan on drafting another small center.

In this case the Oilers just played marry go-round.

Gagner has to be package for a group of players, that fit a specific need for the Oilers.

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#9 vetinari
January 04 2014, 05:33PM
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Is it a case of a coach who can't use a player properly or a case of a player who wants a new start?

Frankly, almost all of the Oilers are underperforming right now which makes me think that it is more a problem with the coaching and if you are going to make a change anywhere, start there, and start now.

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#10 Jodes
January 04 2014, 05:36PM
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Kr55 wrote:

What happened to MacT's gentlemen's agreement that he never should have made? I'm very down on Gagner's game, but MacT made his agreement to not trade him public.

That said, I guess he did tell Krueger he would find him coaching help and then told the media how Krueger is not at fault for last season and he needs to be given good players and then stabbed him in the back to jump on a total fraud manufactured by the Toronto Hype Machine.

This Oilers management group has a pretty lengthy history of backstabbing and having no class. People think it's the weather that scares teams away. That a tiny bit of it, but that's nothing compared to the bad reputation of Lowe and MacT. I would never want to work for them either.

But if Gagner goes to MacT and says "I want to do what's best to help the team/get me out of here" then the agreement is null don't you think?

I will agree on how he sh*t canned Krueger. That was classless. Should have manned up and did it right from the start.

Time for both of them to go..

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#11 -30-
January 04 2014, 05:37PM
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Not to be a pessimist but will this end up like Andrew Cogliano?

Funny how the grass always looks greener elsewhere isn't it?

-30-

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#12 Jodes
January 04 2014, 05:38PM
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Jodes wrote:

Well just when I thought I couldn't post anymore, I decide to come back, so here we go. There are too many what if's in this situation.. Was Sam "rushed" back? Did the coaching staff expect way to much from him when he returned? Has he like many on the team just stopped listening to Eakins?

Or maybe the rumour all those years ago of him wanting out have just finally come to fruition?

Sad to say, but I think Sam Gagner (apart from one night against Chicago) is the 2nd coming of Mike York.. Lots of potential, but just not enough to get over the next hump, regardless of what team you play for.

If he is traded, I don't think it will work out for either team.

Two trashings eh? Must be Mike York fans..

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#13 OilDieHard
January 04 2014, 05:40PM
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is Eakins coach next year?....yes

do the Oil need to improve up the middle....year in and year out they do.

has Arco done enough to make Gags expendable?....no

will the Oil have the same similar talents in the top 6 next year?....yes, unless management can get over their fear of trading Yak or Ebs.

can they get value for Gagner? I doubt they ever really will. even when he had his 8 point night, we still wouldn't have gotten his true value.

my 2 cents.

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#14 EricOG
January 04 2014, 05:45PM
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Is Dallas Eakins the coach of next year's team? At some point, they have to give the coach time and his very own assistants. That should be priority.

Do the Oilers need to improve up the middle? Of course they do. Is this a trick question? Has Mark Arcobello done enough to make Gagner expendable? They cannot have two small centers in the top two. This has been said over and over.

Will the organization have the same number of similar talents in the top 6F next season? Let's just hope for the best on that one.

Can they get value for Gagner? If Sam plays with Hall, thus improving his numbers, yes.

Is Gagner a part of the future with Eakins in charge? I think it is a little obvious that a Dallas Eakins kind of team is far from what the on-ice product is at the moment. Let's face it, they should have never let Tom Renney go. Wether we liked him or not. That move right there, is one of the reasons for the current state of the team.

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#15 Rod from Viking
January 04 2014, 05:52PM
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Kr55 wrote:

What happened to MacT's gentlemen's agreement that he never should have made? I'm very down on Gagner's game, but MacT made his agreement to not trade him public.

That said, I guess he did tell Krueger he would find him coaching help and then told the media how Krueger is not at fault for last season and he needs to be given good players and then stabbed him in the back to jump on a total fraud manufactured by the Toronto Hype Machine.

This Oilers management group has a pretty lengthy history of backstabbing and having no class. People think it's the weather that scares teams away. That a tiny bit of it, but that's nothing compared to the bad reputation of Lowe and MacT. I would never want to work for them either.

This will only happen if Sam agrees to the deal, no one is going back on their word, his fiance is a Dr so it would also have to be somewhere that would work for her, Vancouver or Toronto?

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#16 VK63
January 04 2014, 05:53PM
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he makes 4.8 million and is completely lost.

Those sorts of trades generally return head cases or road kill.

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#17 Kr55
January 04 2014, 05:53PM
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Jodes wrote:

But if Gagner goes to MacT and says "I want to do what's best to help the team/get me out of here" then the agreement is null don't you think?

I will agree on how he sh*t canned Krueger. That was classless. Should have manned up and did it right from the start.

Time for both of them to go..

Yup, if Gags initiated the conversation MacT is off the hook. I think that is very unlikely though. Gags is pretty comfortable in Edmonton and fought pretty hard to get his NTC and agreement to not be traded this year. Likely the MacT started up the conversation and has agreed to move Gags to a place he is OK with. Gags technically has no power in the situation, so I guess he can consider himself lucky he will have any input at all, but I'm sure he's still not very happy about it.

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#18 admiralmark
January 04 2014, 05:56PM
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Once again the Oiler brain trust hang on and hang on and hang onto their deficient player waiting for god knows what?! Until the rest of the entire NHL knows just how useless they are. Sam Gagner has not been an answer since ever. Maybe it wasnt his fault being brought up early. But the team HAS to get better at assessing this and unloading the player while there is still an iota of value. A smallish C that cant win a draw if his life depends on it and has zero defensive IQ... I'm sure the phone is ringing off the hook for him?! As it stands we are going to literally get sweet @%$& all for this player. But I would still take it.

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#19 719
January 04 2014, 06:00PM
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Toronto seems like the best fit on paper. We need defensive help, and they need a center.

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#20 outdoorzguy
January 04 2014, 06:04PM
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So how does a Toronto based reporter get this scoop and not one Edmonton "reporter" even had a sniff? The reporters in town are just as bad as the team. They deserve each other.

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#21 Rod from Viking
January 04 2014, 06:05PM
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Is Dallas Eakins the coach of next year's team? Most likely since it is a 4 year deal, they will give him at least another 1/2 season after this. I am worried if they let him go they would promote Bucky.

Do the Oilers need to improve up the middle?

Yes with a larger more two way player. Has Mark Arcobello done enough to make Gagner expendable? A small sample size but for sure the rest of this year, he is not a second line center solution on this team either. Will the organization have the same number of similar talents in the top 6F next season? Not a chance, they know this isn't working Can they get value for Gagner? Value? A veteran defense man with a similar contract that is physical from a team that needs more offense, maybe.

Is Gagner a part of the future with Eakins in charge? I don't see Eakins making a whipping boy out of Sam but he still isn't being responsible in his own end.

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#22 LoweMustGO
January 04 2014, 06:06PM
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MacT learned how to buy high and sell low while getting his MBA.

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#23 Oiler Al
January 04 2014, 06:09PM
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Package Gagner with Hemsky. Send out a notice to the other 29 GMs .. Glider Twins available for trade.

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#24 camdog
January 04 2014, 06:10PM
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-30- wrote:

Not to be a pessimist but will this end up like Andrew Cogliano?

Funny how the grass always looks greener elsewhere isn't it?

-30-

Do you believe Cogliano turns into that type of hockey player if he had remained in Edmonton?

On a side I do believe if you put Gags on the wing or with some big wingers he can be a productive player. However I don't believe that Gags playing with small, defensively weak wingers is a means of success for him. The balance is off with this team, has been for 8 years and nobody's done a thing to correct this imbalance, why???

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#25 Slats
January 04 2014, 06:12PM
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Oiler Al wrote:

Package Gagner with Hemsky. Send out a notice to the other 29 GMs .. Glider Twins available for trade.

AKA "the Coaster Girls"

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#26 **
January 04 2014, 06:15PM
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Don't toy with me Lowetide.

Gagner's hatred aside, Mac T should see what a great opportunity this is to improve the team. Since the season is already lost he can trade Gagner as a salary dump, ala Smid. Arcobello can't do worse, and it doesn't matter if he does, I mean, the Oilers can only go lower one more spot in the standings.

Gagner can go to a team where he'll be a better fit and have a better career, at least get a chance to do so, what he does with it is up to him.

Prepare for the deadline and free agency, be proactive, don't make Tambellini moves looking for a plugger when the season is gone.

One can only hope.

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#27 Reagan
January 04 2014, 06:17PM
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Salary for salary.

Gagner for Del Zotto.

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#28 6 ring circus
January 04 2014, 06:26PM
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@camdog

Anaheim signed Cogliano to a 4 year contract extension this afternoon,his name can be added to the long list of players who have left this gong show and went to other teams to have success.Gagner on the right team will be added to that list.

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#29 Kareem
January 04 2014, 06:32PM
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I miss Cogliano...Great third line centre with a great defensive game who can also put the puck in the back of the net.

Ducks got him at a steal for a second round pick.

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#30 GTL
January 04 2014, 06:41PM
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With Oil brass's record of asset management, odds are they lose any deal.

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#31 Jerconjake
January 04 2014, 06:43PM
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Don't trade Gagner last year when he had high value. Trade him now that he has a huge contract and his value is at an all-time low. Joke.

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#32 mlselli
January 04 2014, 06:45PM
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Yak went to his agent because he doesn't like how he is being treated. Appears to look like Gagner wants out too. (He insisted on a no move/trade clause in his contract, and was on the door step on an arbitration hearing---clearly he wanted to be here). Who's next? Can we really blame the players? The fans have been predicting this for over a month now. My finger is pointing toward Eakins as being our biggest problem. Nobody is happy in Edmonton, and the rest of the league either pities us or are laughing at us. The morale for the fans and players couldn't possibly be lower, and the management can't be blind. When do they do the right thing. The time for panic has come and gone. I think we now have a crisis.

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#33 TeddyTurnbuckle
January 04 2014, 06:49PM
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Didn't see the hot stove but it wouldn't be the first time a rumour didn't have any legs. I can only hope. Even if you believe Gagner is a good player or not I think it's clear the organization needs to go in a different direction for the second line center. Some believe he could be moved to the wing but there is no room in the top six and then we are paying 4.8 million for a third liner. After Cogliano's impressive display last night it rubbed salt in the wound that Anahiem has a better player and value going forward . If MacT can't trade Gag's before the deadline then he may have to look at a buyout. Either way Ganger can't be back next season. Sucks that his value is at an all time low though.

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#34 michael
January 04 2014, 06:52PM
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Reagan wrote:

Salary for salary.

Gagner for Del Zotto.

I would do that deal and throw in a case of Alberta beef T bone steaks and a box of Cuban Cigars.

Lowetide I am so frustrated with Eakins right now that I am the last person to ask about his future with this franchise. I posted earlier today some of my feelings towards the man. The numbers are against him. But are the numbers a product of the players not grasping his system. Or are they a product of system play that does not work. Eakins is an issue for the off season. I just can't put all this mess on the players. Eakins has a few personality issues that rub me the wrong way.

The Oilers trade Gagner at this point it opens the can of worms at center. Would sam Rheinharts name be then in the mix.Or alternatively would Paul Stastny's or O'Reilly.

Either way I don't see MacT doing anything before the trade deadline.

The season is a write off. The question for me is who on the Oilers will step up to the challenge and show that despite the record they have pride.

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#35 Stall35
January 04 2014, 06:56PM
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Pull the trigger, I am waiting on Gags to flourish or at least turn into a reliable NHL'er some where else just like his old buddy Cogs did in Anaheim.

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#36 Brian
January 04 2014, 06:59PM
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LoweMustGO wrote:

MacT learned how to buy high and sell low while getting his MBA.

It might have been Serious Gord, or another poster , who pointed out that MacT's "MBA" has an asterisk; one you can normally buy rather than earn.

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#37 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
January 04 2014, 07:01PM
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TeddyTurnbuckle wrote:

Didn't see the hot stove but it wouldn't be the first time a rumour didn't have any legs. I can only hope. Even if you believe Gagner is a good player or not I think it's clear the organization needs to go in a different direction for the second line center. Some believe he could be moved to the wing but there is no room in the top six and then we are paying 4.8 million for a third liner. After Cogliano's impressive display last night it rubbed salt in the wound that Anahiem has a better player and value going forward . If MacT can't trade Gag's before the deadline then he may have to look at a buyout. Either way Ganger can't be back next season. Sucks that his value is at an all time low though.

Combine the idea that this management team doesn't have the courage to trade a player who is playing well with the idea that Gagner is not part of the winning equation here and you get to the idea that his playing poorly and lowering his trade value is actually and paradoxically, a net win......it's the only way he gets moved. Sad but true.

I would prefer to keep him till he's playing better...but when he's playing better I don't trust that they'll move him...so I'd rather see him go now.

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#38 Josh Oiler
January 04 2014, 07:06PM
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I told everyone yesterday!!!

Lindy Ruff was available and the Oilers didn't move!

Brian Burke could have also been had as GM!

MacT: ITS TIME TO PULL THE TRIGGER ON A BLOCKBUSTER DEAL

Sam Gagner and 2014 1st round pick for David Clarkeson.

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#39 Rod from Viking
January 04 2014, 07:06PM
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Oilers trade Cog's to Ducks for a second round pick a year later that turned out to be 56th overall, he is one of the best 3rd line centers in the league. Oilers trade a 4th round pick for Jerrod Smithson,who I don't think is in the league unless it is with Marlies. What a joke, don't tell me Lowe didn't assist in both of these deals either. If the Oilers would have traded Gagner at last years deadline for a defense man maybe things would be completely different today.

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#40 Drowning in Oil
January 04 2014, 07:08PM
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THE THING ISN'T " GAGNERS NAME OUT THERE". THE REAL THING IS......

IS THEIR ANYONE LISTENING BECAUSE AT THIS POINT, THE OILERS WILL TAKE AT LEAST ONE NEW COACH FOR GAGNER!

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#41 D-Unit
January 04 2014, 07:09PM
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-30- wrote:

Not to be a pessimist but will this end up like Andrew Cogliano?

Funny how the grass always looks greener elsewhere isn't it?

-30-

Well, when the team a guy like Cogliano, goes to, is like Anaheim it makes a huge difference. A decent player going to a GOOD team is the key. Would Cogliano be the player he is if he was in Buffalo, or the Islanders or another bottom feeder team? If you put Gagner on a Stanley Cup caliber team, he could probably excel somewhat too, but he won't be a 2C on one of those teams.

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#42 TeddyTurnbuckle
January 04 2014, 07:10PM
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@Reagan

I would do that trade in a heart beat.

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#43 Thinker
January 04 2014, 07:11PM
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Whoa, whoa, whoa, everybody calm down. Only one man in hockey has more rings than our POHO, I think he knows a little something about winning, if that was ever in question.

Honestly though, might as well hope they at least get a useful magic bean oil king back. Lazar or Samuelson would be nice, but when they are overwhelmed in the nhl next year they wouldn't be. The team is gonna die no matter what, as long as six rings has a job. Might as well make a bunch of roster moves so you're not always yelling at the same guys.

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#44 Vance in LA
January 04 2014, 07:11PM
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@Tuningout

Hello all. I am Vance (in LA) and this is my first excursion into this sphere of anonymous insults, rants, insights, observations, personal attacks, unfounded rumour and humour. It has been both disappointing and enlightening. I must first take exception to the promo proclaiming Mr. L Tide as a 'shining contributor for over a century'. By my count it is only 83 years, 4 months. Only the great John Short can lay claim to such longevity. Then again, King John is the only reporter alive who actually covered the original 26 mile run from Marathon to Athens live in 490 BC. His interview with Pheidippides is legendary and still controversial, considering he was the only contestant and died immediately after his victorious interview with John. Let us not blame him. As for Dallas Eakins? Tis strange how quickly the tide can turn. Wasn't it just yesterday he was the wave of new young thinking? Of aggressive offense? The opposite of past 'defence first' coaches? Utilizing the offensive talents of this young roster? And then we were introduced to "the swarm", a magical trick in the AHL that was exposed as ridiculous against the best in the world. Then the 5 forward powerplay that would change hockey, and digressed to the most shorthanded goals in the league. And now we witness defencemen coming up the boards with the puck and pulling a 360 degree to get separation from the forechecker. That laughter you hear isn't mine: that's Mike Babcock and Ken Hitchcock. They just can't help themselves. I think it's cruel. But to question Dallas Eakins value is more than fair; every aspect of the team is worse. PP,PK, 5 v 5, but most condemning, the 'kids' have stagnated. The very future of this franchise have either taken a step sideways or backwards. And Lord knows Yak has struggled, but I didn't realize that he was drafted for his checking and defence. Stupid me. Eakins is far from the only problem this team has, but it is apparent he is one of many. Which means he is part of the problem. MacT had to know he was taking a chance with an inexperienced AHL coach, and a very weak supporting staff. So why give the guy a 4 year contract? He wouldn't have signed for 2? Perhaps the NHL needs to implement an entry level contract restriction for coaches, to protect them from themselves. Gagner? Oh my word. We've known for 5 years what he is; smart, tenacious, committed and not a top 2 center, too slow for 3rd line checking, and too small for 4th line banging. His trade value? In my world, zero. But considering the Oilers just got a 17th round pick for Linus Omark, Gagner might just get you Stamkos. I dunno. Tis indeed the winter of our discontent. After 8 years, it's beginning to feel like the Ice Age of our Discontent.

A better year to you all. Thanks for reading.

Vancee in LA

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#45 Primo
January 04 2014, 07:13PM
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vetinari wrote:

Is it a case of a coach who can't use a player properly or a case of a player who wants a new start?

Frankly, almost all of the Oilers are underperforming right now which makes me think that it is more a problem with the coaching and if you are going to make a change anywhere, start there, and start now.

So that will make 5 coaches in the past 6 years. Do you still think a problem with the coaching?? Wake up man look beyond the coaching!!

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#46 OilDieHard
January 04 2014, 07:14PM
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Stall35 wrote:

Pull the trigger, I am waiting on Gags to flourish or at least turn into a reliable NHL'er some where else just like his old buddy Cogs did in Anaheim.

Cogs numbers were mediocre at best his first season with the Ducks, and the previous two with the Oilers. he had a pretty decent year last year in 48 games and is doing roughly the same this year so far. let's not get carried away with the "flourish" stuff until we actually see if he can do it consistently year in and year out.

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#47 reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)
January 04 2014, 07:15PM
Trash it!
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DO NOT LET MACT MAKE A TRADE!! He is stupid. the problem is incompetence at the top so why let a fool make a trade for this team?

Not gonna get anything for Gagner anyway and Arco has not shown to be a replacement yet.

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#48 vetinari
January 04 2014, 07:22PM
Trash it!
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Primo wrote:

So that will make 5 coaches in the past 6 years. Do you still think a problem with the coaching?? Wake up man look beyond the coaching!!

@Primo-- we all know that there are problems with the roster and problems with upper management, but how can anyone say that the present coaching team is not the number one problem right now?

We're worse in all aspects of the game, in the standings and in player morale and performance-- if that's not signs of a coaching problem, then what is?

Are you saying that it is better to stick with the current problem just because we've had too many coaches recently? That's like saying we should stick with a bad goalie just because it would be too hard on team morale to bring it a different goalie. Identify the problem and either do something to remove it or else if you have to live with it, then minimize it.

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#49 TeddyTurnbuckle
January 04 2014, 07:26PM
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I don't think it's rocket science what MacT needs to do in the off season and trade deadline. Move Hemsky ,Gagner , nick shultz and anyone else we can get rid of at the deadline. If this happens we will have a ton of cap space to sign two new goalies, some players with actual nhl experience ( no more Belovs) and leave who ever we draft in juniors.

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#50 D-Unit
January 04 2014, 07:26PM
Trash it!
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Josh Oiler wrote:

I told everyone yesterday!!!

Lindy Ruff was available and the Oilers didn't move!

Brian Burke could have also been had as GM!

MacT: ITS TIME TO PULL THE TRIGGER ON A BLOCKBUSTER DEAL

Sam Gagner and 2014 1st round pick for David Clarkeson.

For Burke to be the Oilers GM, Klowe would have had to be gone.

Also, Burke most likely would have had to have the POHO job, which would be a good thing.

I would love to hear Burke give true assessment of the Oilers players, Bobby Ryan style. Coaches and Management too.

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