ROCK BOTTOM: WAITING ON THE BOUNCE

Robin Brownlee
January 05 2014 03:19PM

When a team hits rock bottom in the standings like the Edmonton Oilers have twice since the NHL lockout of 2004-05, the silver lining for fans is the expectation short-term pain will result in long-term gain and that the team will eventually pick itself up off the floor.

After seven straight years out of the playoffs, soon to be eight, the Oilers, as everybody is acutely aware, have been selling that hope to the faithful folks who buy their tickets and jerseys for years now – the bounce off the bottom, a rise back to respectability and playoff contention.

If you look at teams that have hit the bottom of that elevator shaft in the eight seasons since the lockout – I'm leaving out the Florida Panthers, who finished 30th overall in 2012-13 because we don't know where they'll finish this season -- the expectation better times are ahead isn't unfounded.

Except for fans of the Oilers, of course, who've looked on as their team has gone from being Stanley Cup finalists in 2006 to finishing 2009-10 and 2011-12 dead-last, where they have pretty much stayed.

Where's the bounce?

LONG WAY DOWN

Here's a look at the teams that have finished 30th since the lockout and where they've finished in NHL overall standings in subsequent seasons.

2005-06: ST. LOUIS BLUES 21-46-15 for 57 points

  • 2006-07: 34-35-13 for 79 points – 22nd
  • 2007-08: 33-36-13 for 79 points – 27th
  • 2008-09: 41-31-10 for 92 points – 15th
  • 2009-10: 40-32-10 for 90 points – 15th
  • 2010-11: 38-33-11 for 87 points – 20th
  • 2011-12: 49-22-11 for 109 points – 3rd
  • 2012-13: 29-17-2 for 60 points – 6th

2006-07: PHILADELPHIA FLYERS 22-48-12 for 56 points

  • 2007-08: 42-29-11 for 95 points – 11th
  • 2008-09: 44-27-11 for 99 points – 9th
  • 2009-10: 41-35-6 for 88 points – 18th
  • 2010-11: 47-23-12 for 106 points – 3rd
  • 2011-12: 47-26-9 for 103 points – 6th
  • 2012-13: 23-22-3 for 49 points – 20th

2007-08: TAMPA BAY LIGHTNING 31-42-9 for 71 points

  • 2008-09: 24-40-18 for 66 points – 29th
  • 2009-10: 34-36-12 for 80 points – 25th
  • 2010-11: 46-25-11 for 103 points – 8th
  • 2011-12: 38-36-8 for 84 points – 21st
  • 2012-13: 18-26-4 for 40 points – 28th

2008-09: NEW YORK ISLANDERS 26-47-9 for 61 points

  • 2009-10: 34-37-11 for 79 points – 26th
  • 2010-11: 30-39-13 for 73 points – 27th
  • 2011-12: 34-37-11 for 79 points – 27th
  • 2012-13: 24-17-7 for 55 points – 16th

2009-10: EDMONTON OILERS 27-47-8 for 62 points

  • 2010-11: 25-45-12 for 62 points – 30th
  • 2011-12: 32-40-10 for 74 points – 29th
  • 2012-13: 19-22-7 for 45 points – 24th

2011-12: COLUMBUS BLUE JACKETS 29-46-7 for 65 points

  • 2012-13: 24-17-7 for 55 points – 17th

THIS ABOUT THAT . . .

Philadelphia's last-place finish was a blip on the radar as they enjoyed the biggest bounce in a season after finishing 30th when they improved by 39 points. St. Louis is next with a 24-point improvement. The Blues best season since finishing last is 109 points, an improvement of 52 points. Philly is next with a 50-point jump in 2010-11.

Coming into this season, the Flyers have made the playoffs in four of six seasons since finishing 30th. The Blues have made it in three of seven seasons. Even Tampa Bay and the Islanders, who have floundered almost as badly as the Oilers, have made the playoffs once each, and the Bolts are poised to get in again this season.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

Aceb4a1816f5fa09879a023b07d1a9b4
A sports writer since 1983, including stints at The Edmonton Journal and The Sun 1989-2007, I happily co-host the Jason Gregor Show on TSN 1260 twice a week and write when so inclined. Have the best damn lawn on the internet. Most important, I am Sam's dad. Follow me on Twitter at Robin_Brownlee. Or don't.
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#151 RexHolez
January 05 2014, 10:30PM
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bulldog12 wrote:

Obviously your your your you're you're you're one of the above as well. Except I bet YOU'RE the nerd that got picked on in school

haha, the old "you're the nerd that got picked on in school" jab. That's taking it way too far Bulldog! I'm sure yessir will never be the same! I can only imagine how much fatter you were than all the other 6th graders you beat up!

How is the sanitation department these days? keeping busy?

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#152 Oilbaron
January 05 2014, 10:42PM
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Rotten Ron wrote:

2 guys in my section carried jerseys in tonight. Looks like theyve been getting them ready to go since goal#3

god what douchebags

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#153 Oilbaron
January 05 2014, 10:44PM
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Hoozonphirst wrote:

If I were coach Nick Schultz would have made his last appearance as an Oiler 2 nite. He gave Lightning players a free pass on checks time after time. This guy is a vet mailing it in. That trend didn't start just 2 nite. Tonight it was over the top clear that he is out of here. I would readily oblige him.

Shameful display of gutlessness.

One of the weakest links on the team, especially brutal last game too. I really hope he's not on the team next year, or that somehow they improve enough on D to put him way down the ladder.

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#154 MessyEH
January 06 2014, 03:55AM
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Oilbaron wrote:

god what douchebags

Is that you Kblowe?

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#155 Bryzarro World
January 06 2014, 07:54AM
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yessir wrote:

LOL...Fair enough....shot of Bushmills and a beer every hour on the hour is the prescription for that...best of luck!

Thanks man. That really helped last night

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#156 Oiler Al
January 06 2014, 09:52AM
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DigDeepNBleedBlue wrote:

Help is on the way – Lyric from a TSN opening song for an Oilers' game earlier this year.

Help would be nice. I think we may have to sacrifice virgins at this point. Always a sad day when virgins get sacrificed....

For the stats guys:

Drank three beer in the first period, two in the second and four in the third during the last game. I like to spread the scoring around...

On the sports deal:

No more missing the first ten minutes of an Oilers' game. Priceless! ....well, not priceless. Cost over a billion dollars.

In regards to the broadcasters talent level? Have Evanka Osmak cover everything. I could watch her read the phone book. Wow!

“All I got to do is just shoot it.” - Yakupov

With that “Boom Stick”? Yes.... and play defence, not give the puck away, finish your checks and keep the puck down low in the O-zone. One out of five is not bad, I guess. That said, he's been doing good things recently.

Disclaimer: DO NOT TRADE YAKUPOV!

Gagner needs to own that center ice in front of his own goalie. Needs to. But, he just can't.

Wobbly pop armchair time:

Trade Deadline Chips that require a respectable return: F Hemsky, Gagner D N. Schultz G Dubnyk

May have to eat some contract, but do what you need to. I'd prefer younger prospects 20 – 23 years old and not picks.

Trade Deadline Chips, the rest (get what you can, if anything): F Jones, Abney, Eager, MacIntyre D Potter, Grebeshkov, Larson G Backman

Draft picks, maybe take a chance on a middling prospect, etc.

TDCs if you can't get them under a reasonable contact for 14/15: F Smyth D Belov G Bryzgalov

Bryz? He's been good in net. Looks like he's on the verge of bat sh*t crazy, though.

Disclaimer: He's a goalie.....

Trade what you can and play the sh*t out of the youth the rest of the way. See what you got there. Use what picks you get in some of these deals as chips for trades in the off-season for established heavy vets.

Tough choice: dangle Eberle. But, only for a number one or one B defenceman. It's not just a need, it would be a game changer.

Coach is a rook. That's been on display so far this season. But, I think he warrants another year behind the bench. He's learning and I believe he can be that guy to bring this team into the playoffs.

And that's it. The sky's not falling. It's just a season that fell off the rails early. Very early. Maybe even more of a train wreck. But, the main pieces are in place.

Hey Bud, too many Blues or just got out of the can or havnt been home from FT Mac for a year.

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#157 loweblows
January 06 2014, 11:44AM
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Josh Oiler wrote:

PLAY BAD FOR EKBLAD

must be a slow day in the asylum

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#158 The Real Scuba Steve
January 06 2014, 03:01PM
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I think rock bottom will really us when we break the record for longest playoff drought. Someone call up 6rings and see if still half of the NHL teams will swap their roster with ours.

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