SOULSHINE SOMETIME?

Lowetide
April 11 2014 05:43PM

kidline common

Edmonton Oilers fans are used to disappointment. Every day since 2006 summer has been a death march into the abyss, with the Entry Draft (once a hopeful time) serving as a reminder that progress is for other cities, other teams. This weekend, as we say goodbye to Ryan Smyth, it might be time to ask a question: WHEN do the good times roll?

ABOUT LOSS, LOSS AND MORE LOSS

Since the beginning of the 2013-14 season, the Oilers have chased away veterans Ladislav Smid, Ales Hemsky and now Ryan Smyth retires. These are veteran men, who were here for the losses but also contributed mightily to protecting the kids these years.

Replacing them? Youth (Klefbom, Marincin, others) veterans who bring more grit but less actual ability (Hendricks, Fraser) and some AHL prospects/suspects.

Right now the Oilers look like a dog's breakfast, but that's not unusual for losing teams at this time of year. The question I have is: who are these men—Smid, Hemsky, Smyth, soon Gagner—going to be replaced by?

AIM HIGHER!

If we assume that the Oilers consider themselves set in certain areas (1line, Perron, Gordon, Hendricks) up front and at least comfortable entering next season with a lot of youth on the blue (Marincin, Klefbom, Schultz to go with Ference and Petry) and the current goalies (Scrivens, Fasth) what can we reasonably expect them to add?

Well, I think the list goes like this:

  • A veteran two-way center. We'll call him Martin Hanzal for lack of a better example.
  • At least one veteran winger to go with Gordon-Hendricks. I'm thinking Winnik or Moss, but both would be just fine.
  • A legit top 4 defenseman for the current group. If he ends up being Ron Hainsey instead of Andrei Markov, then so be it. However, this team needs a veteran hand to help Ference with all these youngsters learning the game.

IS THAT ENOUGH?

That's another question I'd like answered. Seems to me the organization is fairly happy to progress slowly, spending another season developing. Craig MacTavish has been interviewed a couple of times this week, including one time on national television, and the sense I'm getting is that they may be willing to roll with Marincin-Petry, Klefbom-Schultz next year as two of their three pairings.

If that's the case, this team MUST improve depth at center—by a lot! If you're bringing in Stastny or Hanzal then Arcobello might be fine at 4line C, but if the add is a more questionable two-way type then we're dancing the same damn jig next winter.

SOULSHINE

If we're about to see a summer of Josh Bailey, Matt Greene, Aaron Ekblad and Daniel Winnik, that's not going to be enough. I'm thinking a word from last summer—bold—sounds even better this season.

The Edmonton Oilers said goodbye to Ryan Smyth today. Let's make this the day we insist Edmonton's management make a concerted effort to turn north, find balance and work for a better day. 

If Taylor Hall ends up spending his career in the second division like Ryan Smyth, it'll be a damn crime and that's for sure.


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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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#101 hogan
April 12 2014, 04:19PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

all pygmy trades - 3/4 liners only

When he actually trades or trades for a 1/2 player he can be considered to be working in an nhl cpacity - so far he's an ahler (a step he skipped so maybe its not surprising)

He did make one trade for a 2nd liner in perron, but other than that quantity but really limited quality. Problem is he came out talking bold and stuff, when in reality its hard to make trades , and nobodys 1st choice is to come play on a lousy team.

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#102 Serious Gord
April 12 2014, 04:39PM
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hogan wrote:

He did make one trade for a 2nd liner in perron, but other than that quantity but really limited quality. Problem is he came out talking bold and stuff, when in reality its hard to make trades , and nobodys 1st choice is to come play on a lousy team.

If I recall correctly Perron was on the third line with St. Louis.

MacT needs to learn to keep his mouth shut.

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#103 Gk1980
April 12 2014, 04:43PM
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I play hockey with a bunch of Canadian fans and they say NO to subban. These guys watch all the games. One second he is the best player in the ice the next he is garbage. Taking a big chance if we actually acquire this guy.

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#104 Bucknuck
April 12 2014, 06:08PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

all pygmy trades - 3/4 liners only

When he actually trades or trades for a 1/2 player he can be considered to be working in an nhl cpacity - so far he's an ahler (a step he skipped so maybe its not surprising)

Goaltenders?

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#105 Serious Gord
April 12 2014, 07:20PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

Goaltenders?

On every other team our goalies both those trade away and those acquired were second or third stringers.

I think one of the biggest disappointments for a lot of fans next year will be how poor the goaltending will be.

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#106 MessyEH
April 13 2014, 06:47AM
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Gk1980 wrote:

I play hockey with a bunch of Canadian fans and they say NO to subban. These guys watch all the games. One second he is the best player in the ice the next he is garbage. Taking a big chance if we actually acquire this guy.

Young Norris Trophy Winner. It is a fact Norris winners are never flashes in the pan. They remain competitive for a long time.

Subban fits the Oilers age cluster. Has a track record of success. Has matured in the past two season. Is just now ENTERING a defense men's prime years.

He should be a target. Offer sheet him for 6 years at 7 million per. it'll cost 3 1st rounders.

But they could wind up being Riley Nash, Alex Plante, Cam Barker, MPS, Colten Teubert, Gilbert Brule. All 1st round selections the Oilers have employed that are no longer in the NHL.

*I know MPS and Nash still go up and down. Neither has met there Draft bet.

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#107 GCW
April 13 2014, 09:06AM
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Bucknuck wrote:

MacT has been the most active GM in the league, so I don't expect him to sit on his hands. The players he has been picking up are 24 or older so I think he agrees with you.

Being active only matters if it improves the team. Whether you look at the whole season or just latter segments (since Jan 1 or last 20 games) this team's chances for percent and Fenwick for percent are worse than last year, west vs west.

That's right folks, all of MacT's moves have led to a team that has performed worse than a Tambo team, and one that had no training camp to boot.

Just think about that. Worse than an Tambo team. How incompetent do you have to be to pull that off?

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