GDB: 58.0: FAMILIAR TERRITORY

Jason Gregor
February 03 2014 01:12PM

Once again the Oilers find themselves in a battle for the basement of the NHL standings. For the fourth time in the last five seasons the Oilers will spend February, March and April jockeying for draft positioning rather than a spot in the playoffs. Fans are frustrated of watching it, we are fatigued of writing about it, and I'm certain the players are tired of living it, but ultimately it will be up to them to avoid this scenario next season.

You need skill to compete in the NHL, but you also need a strong desire to battle and compete, because every team has skill. It is obvious the Oilers still don't have the winning combination of players to push for a playoff spot, and Craig MacTavish will need to rectify that, but the players who are here can't keep waiting for new recruits to save them.

They need to play smarter, stronger and with more passion on a nightly basis.

Tonight must be about pride. The players know the situation. They know Buffalo is the only team in the NHL below them in the standings, so I'd hope they want to keep it that way. They need to show some pride, some passion, some desire and play like a team that won't accept losing.

I'm sure most of you have seen the highlights of yesterday's Montreal/Winnipeg game. Brandon Gallagher is listed at 5'9, 180 pounds, but did you see him battling with Marc Stuart in front of the Jets net. He didn't give an inch and Stuart, 6'2, 213 pounds, couldn't move him away from the crease. Gallagher refused to give up his space on the ice despite a significant weight and height disadvantage.

And Gallagher does that all over the ice. He plays incredibly hard and ferocious and he refuses to make the game easy for his opponents.

When was the last time you saw an Oiler battle like that?

If the Oilers aren't willing to take a physical pounding now and then to win a battle, then this team is never going to win. The organization will continue firing coaches, bringing in new fringe players and hoping that eventually things will change. I believe it is up to the players, especially the core group, to turn this around.

Gallagher has proven you don't need to be huge to compete. I understand you do need some big, skilled players to counter the size of other teams, but until the Oilers acquire those players this group needs to play with more hunger. They need to instill a higher level of accountability within the dressing room. Winning teams demand a lot of one another, and this team needs to start doing the same.

Tonight is a game they shouldn't lose. They need to approach it like a playoff game, even though the outcome is more about pride than the standings.

If the Oilers lose tonight, they open the door to the possibility of entering the Olympic break on a four-game losing streak and sitting in 30th place. None of the players want that and I'd hope their effort reflects that.

LINEUP...

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

Marincin-Petry
Ference-J.Schultz
Fraser-N.Schultz

Bryzgalov

Eakins hinted the D pairings could be switched up, so I'd guess we'll see Ference back with J.Schultz, and N.Schultz move to the right side with Fraser, or possibly have Potter come in for N.Schultz.

I'm surprised Scrivens isn't getting the start. He has a .960 SV% over the past two games, and this is an important game for the team. Why not let Scrivens play tonight? I see him being part of the future much more than I do Bryzgalov so I'd have went with Scrivens and see how he and his teammates responded.

QUICK HITS...

  • Up front the Gagner line needs to find the game they had in Vancouver, because since then they've really struggled. When Perron and Yakupov play greasy they play better. They seem to be at their best when they are emotionally invested in the game.
     
  • The Sabres won four of their first 20 games and scored 1.65 goals/game and allowed 3.15 goals/game before hiring Ted Nolan. Since taking over, Nolan has won 11 of 34 games and their offence and defence has improved a bit up to to 1.94goals/game and down to 2.76 goals/game.

    The special teams pre-Nolan were: 13.5% for PP and 81.1% for PK.
    Special teams with Nolan are: 15.3% for PP and 81.3% for the PK.
     
  • Changing coaches has helped the Jets, they are 8-2 under Paul Maurice, while the Sabres' improvement has been marginal. I firmly believe until you have enough good players the coach won't make that much of an impact. If you look closer at the Jets' games under Maurice they won two games where they were dominated in shots by Chicago and Anaheim. As we've seen in Edmonton, changing coaches doesn't help much if your core group is essentially the same.
     
  • Justin Schultz will play his 98th NHL game tonight. He has been forced to play way more minutes than most other young defenders. People should be more patient regarding his progress.
     
  • Gentleman and Ladies of the Nation...Valentine's Day is fast approaching and you can win a Silver Heart Pendant with a Canadian Diamond centre if you tweet @Oilersnation or @ParisJewellers a story of the worst Valentine's Day gift you've ever given or recieved. Good luck.
     
  • I have no problem with people disagreeing with my opinion or views on the game. Debate is great and usually you can take something from the other side. However, I do take issue when people make boldface lies to try and discredit me. Here is what I tweeted out following the Fraser trade on Friday. 

Like I said, I have no problem if people want to state opposing opinions on topics or disagree with my view, but don't make up stuff and flat out lie to try and disparage someone.

It's immature, unprofessional and ignorant. The ironic part is that the person running their twitter should be well-versed in the Internet. If they were, they could have done a quick search of Oilersnation to see what I wrote about Joensuu. I've never written an article about him, nor have I ever claimed he was the answer to the woes of the Oilers. The only full article dedicated to Joensuu was penned by Jonathan Willis, who used to write for C&B. Here is JW's article. Would the nameless twitter person at CB call that "hanging from his nuts?" I doubt it. I don't care if they don't like me, but I will defend myself to blatant lies.

Here are articles where I have mentioned Joensuu.

This one came after opening night. This came during the preseason. Only mention of him is the final bullet point. Here is a GDB where I mention him under "Quick Hits". You'll notice I'm really pumping his tires.

Tweets like the one above makes their site look childish, which is unfair to a writer like Ryan Batty who blogs there. Batty and I have disagreed on many things over the years, but as you see in this article from him, he doesn't resort to name calling or fabricating things. He digs into the question and comes up with a reasonable and well thought out alternative view. I've read much of his stuff over the years, and he brings up good points and shows you can do so without cutting up the other side's viewpoint.

Note to C&B. Do what you want with your twitter, but don't lie. It makes you look foolish and unprofessional.

Lastly in the tweet they mentioned that Omark produces way more than Joenssu. Omark does, but mainly because he gets PP time and Joensuu doesn't.

To date, Omark has had 1,115:50 of TOI while Joensuu has had 987:13.
If you take away Omark's PP minutes their ES icetime is 961 for Joenssu and 934 for Omark. During those ES minutes Joensuu had 18 points and Omark 22. Not much of a difference.

Their point differential comes from PP time. Omark has 10 PP points in just over 181 minutes of PP time, while Joensuu has 1 point in 25 minutes. If you pro-rate Joenssu's PP time to make it equal to Omark's TOI he'd have close to 8 points. So their production to icetime ratio isn't as wide a gap as earlier suggested. It is always more beneficial to do research instead of making up lies to defend your stance.

UPDATE..

It was pointed out to me that I did tweet this out in September. I guess saying it is a stretch Joensuu might be a big, skilled guy to help the top-six is really pumping his tires. Hilarious.

 TONIGHT....

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers must win this game and their top line carries them to a 4-2 victory.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: With some eastern team's scouts in attendance, Ales Hemsky has a strong game picking up a goal and an assist. 

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Omark and Yakupov drop the mitts in the 2nd period. In a spirited featherweight tilt both land some good blows, but Yakupov surprises everyone and finishes the scrap with a solid right. After the game he says he asked Luke Gazdic for some tips after the Winnipeg game just in case he had to defend himself in the future. It looks like he is a fast learner.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 Zarny
February 03 2014, 07:58PM
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Gk1980 wrote:

If you have recorded it, put it to X2. It actually looks like an NHL game.

Gagne is bad I get it, RNH is invisible, but why no haters on Eberle? THE GUY IS BRUTAL. Selfish and contributes nothing to the team. I'm all for getting rid of him. His plays are weak, he is weak and his toe drags are getting annoying.

Do these guys even care anymore? Sad sad sad.

Eberle is brutal?

That's possibly the dumbest thing I've ever heard.

He's tied for 30th in league scoring with 45 pts in 56 games.

That's at the opposite end of the spectrum to brutal I'm afraid.

Eberle certainly has many areas of his game that can improve, but brutal?

Get a grip.

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#2 They're $hittie
February 03 2014, 01:31PM
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Players that need to go

Gagner - Gone, playing terrible needs fresh start

Eberle - Gone, overpaid, no back checking no passion, core needs to be mixed up

Hemsky - Needs fresh start, Gone

Smyth - Plays Ok this year but is out of gas, gone

Jones - Will never see north of 10 goals again let a lone 20, gone

Schultz Sr - Done, Gone

Acton - Should have never been on team when Luke Adam was available for free, gone

Arcobello - tough one, he is worth his pay, but too small for the oilers to like him, Gone

Belov - KHL Bound probably, Gone

Grebeshkov - back to Siberia, Gone

Bryz - Gone

#SUMITUP

2 good players not palying defensive hockey and living up to their contract, 1 good player who is contributing but is no help because the rest of the team doesnt, to many useless bottom 6 forwards and 6-7 dman =

#ONE$HITTYHOCKEYTEAM

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#3 bazmagoo
February 03 2014, 07:43PM
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We're not the worst, we're not the worst, we're not the worst, we're not the worst. Hurray!

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#4 blue31
February 03 2014, 11:35PM
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Rick Stroppel wrote:

MEANWHILE, AT THE MASTERS GOLF TOURNAMENT

Yakupov, at 30 under par, maintains a slim lead over Weber (-29) and Myers (-26). At one time Yakupov had a firm grip on the green jacket, but I think this one is going down to the wire!

Yakupov is 30 over par. Not under.

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#5 michael
February 03 2014, 08:17PM
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Matt Hendricks has fit in nicely. For the MacT haters where are your comments now regarding the trade for MH?he has complimented Gordon really well. R.Jones has picked up the energy since MH has arrived. Whether by directly or by osmosis RJ has played way better since team with MH and BG.The line has been solid.

Tonight with Hemsky on the line it was ok.Hemsky is a square peg there. He really needs a trade to a team that needs a 2cd line winger.He player well tonight.

If your MacT at the deadline and a team comes calling for a tender. Do you trade Scrivens?IB? Both?Neither?

They both are increasing their trade value. Scrivens continues his current play what is his value at the deadline? A 3rd round pick may markedly increase to a late 1st or 2cd round pick. And IB may get you a late 2cd round pick. His play has been solid. And his post game interviews border on the sane.

Its going to be interesting to see if anyone will step up to get Gagner. I really think MacT is not going to trade him until the off season.No reason to rock the boat at the moment. Trading Gagner at the draft seems to me the better move.

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#7 Oilerz4life
February 03 2014, 07:47PM
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Nation drama lol

Crap period one and two. Better checking in the third. To heck with "playing for pride". The Oilers just need to learn to check and cycle hard for 60 minutes. Its called work ethic.

Gags is a joke. Hemsky's a china doll. The Oilers should trade both of them for Hendricks style hockey players.

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#8 ?
February 03 2014, 08:12PM
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They're $hittie wrote:

Does anyone actually still respect copper and blue.

All there writers have the same opinion and Zona wont hire one with a different opinion. Every article is about Omark and Gilbert. No fresh material. Corsi this, corsi that.

They want a better oiler team but dont want to trade Anyone. They think that omark on the fourth line would win games.

They think that all swedish defensman prospects in the top ten are the next nick lidstrom.

Get some new articles and quit dwelling on the omark and Gilbert trades. They are horrible players and it is in the past.

If Oilers management has the same ineptitudes that you show in judgement of players, it makes perfect sense why this team is so bad.

I guess Hendricks will be this team's salvation

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#9 Oasis
February 03 2014, 08:59PM
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@Sevenseven

If the plan is another lottery pick then by all means sign them both.

The Oilers are not going anywhere with either of these goalies as their number 1. They are decent backups and enough to get through the year and that's it. Let them battle it out, sign the better of the two and go after a real goalie in the offseason.

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#10 TayLordBalls
February 03 2014, 01:13PM
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You want a game/weather forecast? I'll give you one!

It's going to be cold.

It's going to be gray.

And it's going to last you for the rest of your life!

Yes - it's groundhog day, again!

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#11 Dodd
February 03 2014, 01:33PM
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Glad you called out some internet BS.

Anyone who reads your writing regularly, and reads C&B would be aware of the value of both. What separates the pros from the clowns are tweets like above.

I don't always agree with you either, Mr. Gregor but any exchanges I've had with you are in a respectful context, and I'm no hockey blog site.

Be better, Copper and Blue.

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#12 They're $hittie
February 03 2014, 01:35PM
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Does anyone actually still respect copper and blue.

All there writers have the same opinion and Zona wont hire one with a different opinion. Every article is about Omark and Gilbert. No fresh material. Corsi this, corsi that.

They want a better oiler team but dont want to trade Anyone. They think that omark on the fourth line would win games.

They think that all swedish defensman prospects in the top ten are the next nick lidstrom.

Get some new articles and quit dwelling on the omark and Gilbert trades. They are horrible players and it is in the past.

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#13 They're $hittie
February 03 2014, 03:03PM
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OILERSNATION IS A COLLECTION OF LOCAL MEDIA GUYS WHO ARE ACTUALLY PAID FOR AN OPINION OUTSIDE THE SITE AND BY CREDIBLE MEDIA, and ALONG SIDE A FEW FANS WHO CREATED THE SITE WHO HAVE FUN WITH THEIR ARTICLES.

Copper and blue is a bunch of amateur blow hards, who are only paid based for their opinions based on website hits and was awarded the rights to post on SB Nation probably because the editor bought the rights.

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#14 pkam
February 04 2014, 10:24AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Everyone has heard the definition of stupid........doing the same thing over and over again and expecting a different result.

Just how many times does Eakins need to trot out five forwards ( or 4 forwards and JS) to realize:

1. They will NEVER shoot the puck. 2. They will invariably turn the puck over for an odd man rush. 3. They are not ready for this new-age experiment at this stage of their career. 4. This is giving the other team the advantage NOT us. 5. This is STUPID STUPID, STUPID.

Eakins is part of the problem.......NOT the solution.

That is not the definition of stupid, that is the definition of insanity.

Now perhaps you can explain how 5 forwards or 4 forward and JS has to do with the following or how can 3 forwards and 2 defenses will make any difference?

1. Are you suggesting they will shoot the puck if Eakins put 3 forwards and 2 defense in our PP?

2. Are you suggesting they will stop turning the puck over for an odd man rush if Eakins put 3 forwards and 2 defense in our PP?

3. Our PP at home is ranked 5th at over 23%. The problem is our PP on the road is 28th at 11%. If it is like you said that they are not ready for this new-age experiment, how do you explain the 23.3% home PP%?

4. If the players turn over the puck, it is giving the other team the advantage, whether it is SH, ES, or PP, and it doesn't matter how many forwards or defense in our PP unit, does it?

5. Not sure what is STUPID?

Did you mean Eakins coaches the players not to shoot and turn over the puck, or don't play the PP at 23.3% on the road?

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#15 The Real Scuba Steve
February 03 2014, 01:22PM
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Exciting last place hockey!!!

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#16 Jakethesnake
February 03 2014, 07:10PM
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Louie debrusk sucks. Was a terrible player and fighter and is a worse broadcaster At this point I would rather have Peter labaudious.

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#17 Rod from Viking
February 03 2014, 07:51PM
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Gk1980 wrote:

If you have recorded it, put it to X2. It actually looks like an NHL game.

Gagne is bad I get it, RNH is invisible, but why no haters on Eberle? THE GUY IS BRUTAL. Selfish and contributes nothing to the team. I'm all for getting rid of him. His plays are weak, he is weak and his toe drags are getting annoying.

Do these guys even care anymore? Sad sad sad.

Watch it "Wayne" will block your posts, of course he cares, did you not see him take out that 15 yr old in the theater that was butting in line! Good Grief.

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#18 Oilerz4life
February 03 2014, 08:11PM
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Vancouver loss in Detroit. Shut out. Haha. That and the sportsnet pacific cast are panzies. Eat it casucks. Another round 1 exit. I cant wait to shove it in your face.

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#19 Rdubb
February 04 2014, 07:10AM
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Gregor, I don't want to "pump up your tires", too much, but I do have to say this: I don't always agree with your position either here on the Nation or on 1260, but I do give you credit as you always try and give your opinion with facts (if possible, and facts are not needed in giving ones opinion either) & with passion, & when I disagree with you, i'll send you a text (hard to really give ones point and facts & such in 160 characters) & if you respond, you'll either say "I agree BUT" or you will go straight into giving me fact to back up your argument, & that's ok... You also stand up for yourself, and ask the difficult questions when interviewing someone, something others @ 1260 do not always do. And the most important thing is that you allow us, the reader/listener you give our opinions in whatever forum we are in, and you hardly ever interrupt unless they are being rude... Do I know you personally, NO. But from what I read and listen to, my opinion is that you are a character person who is an honest person. All a person has is their word and their actions, and if someone brings those into question, one must stand-up for themselves should they find the fight worth while, but, never forget... Good on you Jason. Keep writing good articles and keep rocking at 2pm... Peck

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#20 S cottV
February 03 2014, 02:22PM
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Really dislike that Perron, Gagner, Yak line.

Makes no sense to play Gagner and Yak together. With the odd blue moon exception, they are awful together.

Break up the top line and come up with combinations that keep these guys apart.

It not like Hall, RNH and Eberle are lights out great - anyway....

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#21 Spydyr
February 03 2014, 04:11PM
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OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: This one is to easy.Omark scores the game winner in the shootout with a spinorama move.

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#22 james_dean
February 04 2014, 09:51AM
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Dave wrote:

I am not sure what prompted your post and I too enjoy his show. He is an excellent interviewer and his coaching 101 sessions are very informative. Perhaps he could have one of those interviews with Eakins so that we could understand the system the coach is attempting to install.

If he has a failing (and who among us doesn't) it is that he does not readily admit when he is wrong.

I wish that Spector was still part of his show. That was my favorite segment.

When tsn dropped spector they messed up big time.

even maclean doesnt come cloee

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#23 BillHK
February 03 2014, 01:45PM
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I've stopped reading C&B. Their editors ARE childish and threaten to blackball you if you disagree with an article's viewpoint. Then their writers chime in with immature profanity whenever they feel like it. Truly a waste of effort.

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#25 Tha Legion
February 03 2014, 03:22PM
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little over the line re C&B by some of the posters. Just because they aren't paid doesn't make them poor writers, now granted I don't read C&B because I don't care for the way they conduct themselves online. But I wouldn't attack their work. It's usually pretty good.

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#26 BobbyCanuck
February 03 2014, 04:41PM
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Scrivens will be a UFA, he is playing the best he can in order to attract attention from all the other teams, he has been in the locker room, he has seen the culture, and he will only sign in Edmonton for $5-7M/year for 2 years. I would have retired at 29 if I had $10M in the bank, would you? If he does not retire after that, he can still go play elsewhere.

I would love to see Yak drop the gloves! He has been thrown under the bus so often this year, I would not be surprised if he refused to report to training camp (do not know the legal logistics of this move)

I am actually hoping Oil get it handed to them tonight. I feel one of the biggest problems with mgmt. has been these 3 odd game winning streaks we get on once a month or so. These streaks have a habit of giving Oil brass the optics that we are oh so very close to having a complete club. Come on Oilers! I really want to change my avatar

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#27 toprightcorner
February 03 2014, 04:54PM
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Most people seem to blame the players for not working hard enough, not being gritty, not playing a 2 way game, yet it seems those same people are the ones who want to fire Eakins ASAP.

Firing Eakins will once again show that the players are not held accountable for their poor play on the ice. This reinforces them to continue playing the same way because it is not their fault which means the team will not get any better thus resulting in a bad team again next year.

This cycle must be stopped. Until the players are held accountable and understand that they need to change what they do on the ice, this team will always struggle.

Eakins may not be the best coach for the team, but until the players change their attitudes, no coach will improve this team. Heck, Scotty Boman would not make this team better if the players continue to play like this.

Once the players start to hold themselves accountable and are committed to their play and responsibilities then the focus can be put on the coach and whether or not he is the guy that can get the best results out of the players he has. Until then a coaching change is futile.

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#28 toprightcorner
February 03 2014, 06:06PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Hi Jason,

You and I had a conversation a while back based on a question you asked which was " Do we believe the Oilers organization is on the right path" I said NO. You said they were at a crossroads and that if MacT made the right moves we'd be OK.

I agreed at the time. But I'm having less and less confidence that this is true. I think we have a soft core, not just a soft supporting cast, and don't see that changing under MacT. I think they are committed to the current kids and want to add toughness around them.

I don't think that approach will work. I think besides Gagner, that Ebbs may also have to go ( and I love Ebbs but the core is too soft)That and at least 6 or 7 more changes that add grit and compete.

So I think we are on the wrong road.

I agree 100% that Ebs likey has to go along with Gagner. Not only will he give you a significant return but I have a feeling that he and Hall being such close friends off the ice that it may affect the team on the ice, hard to explain but I think it is possible.

I can only assume that MacT communicating "bold moves" was refering to trading a core player and since he signed Gagner after that, Eberle would seem to be the next logical choice and Hall and Nuge would have to be considered ahead of Ebs.

This summer will decide whether or not MacT can take this team in the right direction and make the tough decisions by trading a core player to get a better mix. He likely over valued the return he could get this summer or the low cap affected the possible destinations and didnt pull the trigger but he can't make that same mistake this summer. I will give MacT this summer to make that bold move before I pass judgement on him

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#29 Oasis
February 03 2014, 08:25PM
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@michael

Not a MacT hater but I would say its a little early to be singing the praises of Hendricks. He has played well but let's not get carried away.

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#30 Comrade GT
February 03 2014, 09:05PM
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It wasn't pretty but they got it done.

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#31 Manfly
February 03 2014, 02:37PM
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Copper n Poo wrote:

6-1 Oil.

Besides the excellent Jon Willis, Copper N Blue is intolerable.

Very much up their own collective ass.

"Copper n Poo" lol, i kind of felt the same way after reading a few of the very angry articles.

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#32 Rama Lama
February 03 2014, 02:52PM
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GriffCity wrote:

Agreed that Gallagher is how our smaller fwd's should play. Tenacious is the word. Good luck finding that tenacity in Gagner, Eberle and the lot. The only player who battles for space on the Oilers is newly acquired Hendricks and he only does so while jockeying for position on the 4th line -not ultimately effective. I have liked Hendricks game thus far, he certainly isnt flashy but he plays positional hockey where he doesnt get beat and he is TOUGH TO PLAY AGAINST. We have been saying if all year, actually for a couple fo years that Oilers are small, soft and easy to play against -and its true! By far one of the easiest teams to stare down at and not be intimidated. Gazdic has done what he can with his fists, which isn't a lot and Hendricks brings that element of functional toughness the Oilers so desperately need. Perron plays with an edge but he's more lippy and cheap than he is tough. We could certainly use a guy like gallagher to show these panmzies that you don't have to be big to play big. Guess they will have to take their notes from Ference although I like Gallaghers game much more. Did I mention Gallagher is a local kid from Edmonton?

We have our own Brendan Gallager his name is Mark Arcbello !

He hits, skates, and does all the small thing right and his reward is being sent to the minors.

Yes I get that we are showcasing the new "Horcoff" that being Sam Gagner. If we do not move this guy for something now, we will be talking about this for the next four years. Same goes for Ryand Smyth as well as Hemsky.

We need to move these guys so that other more deserving get a chance to play. Hanging on to talent for far too long has become the Achilles heel of this organization. I hope Mac T keeps going and does his part ........he is the only one in management that seems to get it.

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#33 Alsker
February 03 2014, 06:41PM
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Nice goal by Jultz, funny I was in the middle of a ranting bout Gags not going the net with the puck when he scored. So back to snowpants, no one around him and he passes off into a crowd. And why you ask: FEAR!!!!! Like Klown, Gags must go.

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#34 The Natural
February 03 2014, 07:49PM
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Is it just me, or does hemsky look out of place on that third line? I thought that gordon, hendricks, and jones looked WAY better than gordon, hendricks, and hemsky...and i'm not a huge ryan jones fan, but it just looked like when he was on that line, it was at least effective as a shut down/gritty line.

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#35 Sevenseven
February 03 2014, 08:41PM
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I think they made the right choice starting Bryz. They now have 2 goalies with a high save percentage and on a roll. Something tgey havent had all year. If they keep this up, the oilers could gain some confidence going forward. If they both play good down the stretch sign both. I dont think either is a clear cut number 1, but they could make a decent tandem. Get them cheap, keep lots of cap space for defenseman.

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#36 tileguy
February 04 2014, 09:53AM
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We have seen so many bizzare line combinations this year might I suggest a couple more.

Lets put some beef(chicken) on each line, perhaps Hendricks on the first, Gordon on the second, Gadzic on the third. Might make the small guys play a little bigger knowing somebody has there backside.

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#37 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
February 03 2014, 02:43PM
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CnB always struck me as bush league compared to the Nation.

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#38 They're $hittie
February 03 2014, 02:58PM
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Manfly wrote:

i have read the opinions on that board and oh good lord it's so one sided! seems that if anyone has a differing opinion that the bloggers do, they are hacked to bits. i actually feel sorry for the very few posters on there with differing opinions and i refuse to post on there. i did notice that they seem to go on and on there about the Hartikainen and Omark trades there and seem to think they would make this team better somehow? i'll stick to Oilersnation and a few others that don't have such one sided opinions!

agree totally,

I have a friend who writes for them. He has never played hockey in his life and would get dominated today in a house league peewee game.

If they had their way there would be no hitting in hockey. The womens game would be more physical (not saying it is not physical, and I would love to see full contact in their sport)

If copper and blue cant put a number to it then it makes no sense to them.

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#39 **
February 03 2014, 03:29PM
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When was the last time I saw an Oiler play like Gallagher?.

Well it was the last time I saw Arcobello play for the Oilers.

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#40 S cottV
February 03 2014, 03:38PM
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pkam wrote:

The Oilers played great for the last 30 minutes against the Coyotes and the 3rd and 4th lines were great.

The Oilers played great the 1st 40 minutes against the Preds and all lines were contributing.

Gagner, Perron and Yak were our best line against Vancouver.

RNH, Hall and Eberle were our only productive line against the Sharks.

So they make sense when the team won 3 games in a row, then one loss against the Bruins and suddenly these line combinations make no sense?

If Eakins changed the lineup in the Bruins games, he would have been nailed to the cross for changing the winning lineup for no apparent reason.

OMG - C'mon, the last two games have been a complete embarrassment, save for a Scrivens miracle.

You dont see Gagner (worst NHL 2C)playing with Yak (worst plus minus in the NHL) being a problem?

Maybe they get away with it vs Buffalo, but it's russian roulette vs a decent team and the gun has bullets in 5 of the 6 chambers.

The empty chamber happened to come up vs the Canucks, but I wouldn't want to put that gun to my head very often.

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#41 Manfly
February 03 2014, 03:47PM
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Duke wrote:

Omark?

Seriously?

We're still talking about Omark?

Stop, please, in the name of all that's holy.

The European Robbie Shremp.

or Robert Nilsson 2.0? i don't believe "we" are here talking about Omark much at ON, but C&B seems to be fixated on it from what i have read.

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#42 David S
February 03 2014, 04:00PM
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Damn this "work" thing. The comment thread is disjointed and the text boxes in the article are bleeped out, which means all hell broke loose here this morning AND I MISSED THE WHOLE DAMN THING!

#SadGagnerFace

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#43 Spydyr
February 03 2014, 04:08PM
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They're $hittie wrote:

Players that need to go

Gagner - Gone, playing terrible needs fresh start

Eberle - Gone, overpaid, no back checking no passion, core needs to be mixed up

Hemsky - Needs fresh start, Gone

Smyth - Plays Ok this year but is out of gas, gone

Jones - Will never see north of 10 goals again let a lone 20, gone

Schultz Sr - Done, Gone

Acton - Should have never been on team when Luke Adam was available for free, gone

Arcobello - tough one, he is worth his pay, but too small for the oilers to like him, Gone

Belov - KHL Bound probably, Gone

Grebeshkov - back to Siberia, Gone

Bryz - Gone

#SUMITUP

2 good players not palying defensive hockey and living up to their contract, 1 good player who is contributing but is no help because the rest of the team doesnt, to many useless bottom 6 forwards and 6-7 dman =

#ONE$HITTYHOCKEYTEAM

Could not agree more,time to change the dynamic.Make the team hard to play against.

No more easy nights against the Oilers.

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#44 Dave
February 03 2014, 05:57PM
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Can we rethink this whole new arena thing over again??

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#45 Gk1980
February 03 2014, 06:55PM
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If you have recorded it, put it to X2. It actually looks like an NHL game.

Gagne is bad I get it, RNH is invisible, but why no haters on Eberle? THE GUY IS BRUTAL. Selfish and contributes nothing to the team. I'm all for getting rid of him. His plays are weak, he is weak and his toe drags are getting annoying.

Do these guys even care anymore? Sad sad sad.

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#46 Max
February 03 2014, 09:07PM
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vetinari wrote:

When's the "Parent's Roadtrip"? Maybe the problem is that they don't have their parents sitting in the stands, waiting to give them a smack upside the head when they decide to coast, especially on the road... if they want, I could lend them my mom for a week or two-- she'd have them scared to come back to the bench if they played like boneheads...

Agree - my husband says I should be the coach - they wouldn't dare lose. A manic red-head would have them all scared s*****ss. He says one of my evil looks could kill someone at 50 paces........ I'd sure like to give it a try.

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#47 Rick Stroppel
February 03 2014, 09:24PM
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MEANWHILE, AT THE MASTERS GOLF TOURNAMENT

Yakupov, at 30 under par, maintains a slim lead over Weber (-29) and Myers (-26). At one time Yakupov had a firm grip on the green jacket, but I think this one is going down to the wire!

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#48 Dangilitis
February 03 2014, 09:55PM
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Probably Derek zona he's a real loser. Works for dicks sporting goods in Pittsburgh and obviously the stores name suits him. Most arrogant foolish blogger and between him and chapman they have completely turned people away from their site, me included. Jason I wish you could have seen the debate we had on their site but you won't be able to because that prick took it down because it made him look bad. He argued that RNH was mishandled and i told him that he has no medical knowledge, and more importantly, no inside knowledge of RNH's recovery nor the condition of his shoulder. He called me an idiot and then I proceeded to show him why he was wrong, using my experience as someone who has had a labral shoulder repair and has assisted in the OR as a medical student. He then told me my experiences were irrelevant and called me a proctologist. I then showed him journal articles suggesting RNH's recovery was within reasonable expectations and that, in fact, some players can recover in 4 months to competitive sport. He then called me a dentist and I told him to stick it. Don't take it personally, there are some good people writing there but the rest are jealous and insecure. Hating for the sake of it, and hating people who don't agree with them for the sake of it. Tyler Dellow, you name it. I stopped reading them months ago and I suggest everyone else do the same.

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#49 DrunkGuyTy
February 04 2014, 06:18AM
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Dear Jordan,

If you want the puck, GO GET THE F'n THING!!! They're not going to just give it to you. And yes, you may need to bump in to someone!

FFS!!!!

-DGT

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#50 Dave
February 04 2014, 09:42AM
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Rdubb wrote:

Gregor, I don't want to "pump up your tires", too much, but I do have to say this: I don't always agree with your position either here on the Nation or on 1260, but I do give you credit as you always try and give your opinion with facts (if possible, and facts are not needed in giving ones opinion either) & with passion, & when I disagree with you, i'll send you a text (hard to really give ones point and facts & such in 160 characters) & if you respond, you'll either say "I agree BUT" or you will go straight into giving me fact to back up your argument, & that's ok... You also stand up for yourself, and ask the difficult questions when interviewing someone, something others @ 1260 do not always do. And the most important thing is that you allow us, the reader/listener you give our opinions in whatever forum we are in, and you hardly ever interrupt unless they are being rude... Do I know you personally, NO. But from what I read and listen to, my opinion is that you are a character person who is an honest person. All a person has is their word and their actions, and if someone brings those into question, one must stand-up for themselves should they find the fight worth while, but, never forget... Good on you Jason. Keep writing good articles and keep rocking at 2pm... Peck

I am not sure what prompted your post and I too enjoy his show. He is an excellent interviewer and his coaching 101 sessions are very informative. Perhaps he could have one of those interviews with Eakins so that we could understand the system the coach is attempting to install.

If he has a failing (and who among us doesn't) it is that he does not readily admit when he is wrong.

I wish that Spector was still part of his show. That was my favorite segment.

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