Edmonton Oilers may be looking at Deryk Engelland, because of course they are

Jonathan Willis
May 29 2014 06:00AM

Engelland

On Wednesday, the Edmonton Journal’s Jim Matheson wrote that the Oilers “are almost certainly looking at” Pittsburgh defenceman Deryk Engelland.

Because if there’s one thing history has taught us, signing a 32-year-old fringe NHL defenceman with terrible underlying numbers never backfires.

WOWY!

It’s interesting to note the Corsi percentage of the defencemen who have played at least an hour on a pairing with Engelland since he first broke into the NHL in 2009:

Player Minutes With Without Difference
Brooks Orpik 601 45.6 50.0 -4.4
Matt Niskanen 601 51.6 53.4 -1.8
Alex Goligoski 406 47.5 52.5 -5.0
Paul Martin 343 51.3 53.7 -2.4
Kris Letang 290 50.1 54.3 -4.2
Simon Despres 269 51.2 54.0 -2.8
Mark Eaton 148 42.0 46.1 -4.1
Robert Bortuzzo 145 42.1 47.5 -5.4
Ben Lovejoy 132 48.1 50.6 -2.5
Rob Scuderi 110 42.6 49.8 -7.2
Zbynek Michalek 109 46.3 50.3 -4.0
Olli Maatta 92 43.4 51.1 -7.7

The key point here: Every single one of them posted a worse number with Engelland.

It’s not like there are extenuating circumstances here, either. Engelland typically plays depth opponents, and prior to this past season has been seen his shifts start far more frequently in the offensive zone than the defensive zone.

Fraser vs. Fistric

45-Fistric-3

The Oilers always seem to be looking for a big, physical third-pairing defenceman.

They’ve had some decent ones in recent years. Matt Greene shouldn’t have been playing in 2006 but he eventually rounded into form. Andy Sutton did some nice things. Mark Fistric was solid in the role, though he eventually wanted too much money. Theo Peckham even had some moments.

Then there are the other guys. The most recent example is Mark Fraser – a player who brings size and toughness and a willing attitude but not much else.

5-Fraser-2

Engelland seems more likely to fall into the Fraser camp than the Fistric camp. His teammates consistently perform better without him than with him, in his prime he was a limited player, and given his age he’s a long way from being in his prime.

It’s understandable why the Oilers want this kind of guy, but there are better options. Brett Bellemore of the Carolina Hurricanes is a favourite in this corner. Clayton Stoner is younger than Engelland, better than Engelland and a free agent after five years in Minnesota.

There is no reason to settle on Engelland.

RECENTLY BY JONATHAN WILLIS

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#51 Yaz
May 29 2014, 11:07AM
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@Zarny

Yak didn't help himself but every player digressed under Eakins last year. He is just not an NHL coach, no leadership and no ability to get players to reach their potential. If he is here long enough he will ruin any remaining young players we have as he satisfies his ego. The kid on the street last year was right, "Eakins you suck "

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#52 Zarny
May 29 2014, 11:13AM
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jeremy wrote:

based on what fantasy maybe. The best part of their top 50 is it is based on individual stats which is great he can score points too bad he cannot play defense, you know the position he is supposed to play especially compared to guys like once again Chara, Weber, Pietrangelo, Doughty, Keith, Ekman Larson.

Obviously lists are subjective but Karlsson is most certainly in consideration for top 5 D in the league.

Bleacher report ranked the top 50 D heading into 2013-14 and had Karlsson ranked 4th behind Chara, Weber and Keith.

To dismiss the offensive part of a Dman's game is ridiculous. If you're ranking the top 5 defensive defenseman fair enough.

If you're ranking the top 5 D overall though it counts and Karlsson put up 74 pt this year beating Keith by 13 pt. Karlsson doubled Doughty's production. To dismiss that borders on asinine.

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#53 Zarny
May 29 2014, 11:20AM
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Yaz wrote:

Yak didn't help himself but every player digressed under Eakins last year. He is just not an NHL coach, no leadership and no ability to get players to reach their potential. If he is here long enough he will ruin any remaining young players we have as he satisfies his ego. The kid on the street last year was right, "Eakins you suck "

No, every player did not regress under Eakins.

Hall continued to dominate playing tougher minutes.

Eberle was on pace for 63 pt over 82 games under Krueger. He put up 65 pt in 80 games this year playing tougher minutes.

Perron had a career year.

Pro-rated Nuge was on pace for 49 pt last year under Krueger. He put 56 pt in 80 games this year.

Gagner had a bad year due to injury and Yakupov had the same struggles as Galchenyuk. I'm sure only playing half a rookie season had nothing to do with it lol.

Try reality sometime; you'll like it.

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#54 Tikkanese
May 29 2014, 11:21AM
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I don't know guys. Engellend keeps getting drafted in my hockey pools as a goon. Those teams have never come close to winning the pool but since he keeps getting drafted there must be some value there, right?

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#55 ubermiguel
May 29 2014, 11:22AM
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Wrong Pittsburgh defenceman; aim higher up the depth chart MacT! Niskanen or Orpik would both be better and would eat some minutes so we don't have 23 year olds playing 23 minutes a night.

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#56 Tikkanese
May 29 2014, 11:25AM
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Zarny wrote:

No, every player did not regress under Eakins.

Hall continued to dominate playing tougher minutes.

Eberle was on pace for 63 pt over 82 games under Krueger. He put up 65 pt in 80 games this year playing tougher minutes.

Perron had a career year.

Pro-rated Nuge was on pace for 49 pt last year under Krueger. He put 56 pt in 80 games this year.

Gagner had a bad year due to injury and Yakupov had the same struggles as Galchenyuk. I'm sure only playing half a rookie season had nothing to do with it lol.

Try reality sometime; you'll like it.

You forgot to add that Yakupov is the first player in history to regress in his 2nd season. There has never been a term coined such as "sophmore jinx" or anything to that effect to explain such a phenomenon.

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#57 anon
May 29 2014, 11:27AM
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how many years in a row do the oilers need to be in the basement for the people in charge to realize that face-punchers aren't the answer?

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#58 sintaxi
May 29 2014, 12:01PM
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jeremy wrote:

wow top 5 - which experts think this? Weber, Suter, Chara, Keith, Doughty, Pietrangelo, Larsen, Seabrook, are all better than Karlson so I do not know who you are kidding about being top 5, hell top 10 is a stretch

I'm guessing the experts who voted Erik Karlson the 2012 Norris Trophy winner.

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#59 sin
May 29 2014, 12:02PM
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sintaxi wrote:

I'm guessing the experts who voted Erik Karlson the 2012 Norris Trophy winner.

Karlsson, rather (sorry Erik).

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#60 Al Low
May 29 2014, 12:08PM
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Zarny wrote:

No, every player did not regress under Eakins.

Hall continued to dominate playing tougher minutes.

Eberle was on pace for 63 pt over 82 games under Krueger. He put up 65 pt in 80 games this year playing tougher minutes.

Perron had a career year.

Pro-rated Nuge was on pace for 49 pt last year under Krueger. He put 56 pt in 80 games this year.

Gagner had a bad year due to injury and Yakupov had the same struggles as Galchenyuk. I'm sure only playing half a rookie season had nothing to do with it lol.

Try reality sometime; you'll like it.

'Try reality sometime, you'll like it.' Really? The overall point of the post is the team regressed under Dallas Eakins. Since you like numbers so much, 28th place in the league overall (ie 3rd last in the conference). That's where the Oilers sit despite the 2 extra point in 2 less games by Jordan Eberle.

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#61 Loweblows
May 29 2014, 12:15PM
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@Al Low

This is an oilers fan site. We have excuses and reasons why the team sucks for everything!

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#62 Manfly
May 29 2014, 12:38PM
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it's the MacT way though, isn't it? just add anyone in the off season and there you go....we've made changes! nobody said they would be effective ones, but still changes. nobody really cared whether or not Belov or Larsen came back, and Fraser is barely an NHLer, but the Oilers need to sign/trade for a top d-man and a middle d-man perhaps, and stop the dillying about with bottom pairing. if he's going to sign Engelland, then he may as well just play Klefbom, Marincin and Fraser instead and save the Oilers money.

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#63 Nabeel
May 29 2014, 01:21PM
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They would sign him.. Obviously this team is going to be shipped out. Daryl Katz is a great goon of big pharma but an idiot when it comes to sports

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#64 Oilbaron
May 29 2014, 01:27PM
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Well he had almost twice as many points as Belov last year, so at very least hopefully he's a slight improvement on last years team. We still need way more help on the back end though, excited to see what Mac-T does this summer

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#65 Zarny
May 29 2014, 02:30PM
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Al Low wrote:

'Try reality sometime, you'll like it.' Really? The overall point of the post is the team regressed under Dallas Eakins. Since you like numbers so much, 28th place in the league overall (ie 3rd last in the conference). That's where the Oilers sit despite the 2 extra point in 2 less games by Jordan Eberle.

No Al, the point wasn't that the "team" regressed under Eakins.

The direct quote was "Yak didn't help himself but every player digressed under Eakins last year".

Which I pointed out was complete and utter BS.

I'll be generous and assume "digressed" was a typo since the word means to go off on a tangent.

Like I said...try reality sometime. And learn to read.

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#66 Anton
May 29 2014, 02:46PM
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Oilers: gateway to KHL.

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#67 The artist formerly known as Harry
May 29 2014, 02:56PM
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Zarny wrote:

@Quicksilver ballet

1) Wsh isn't going to trade Ovechkin

2) I wouldn't want him (Ovechkin). He'll never win the SC while he's the centerpiece. When the going gets tough he sulks.

3) Eakins wasn't the reason Yak struggled last year. Yak was. Specifically his p*ss poor play; especially without the puck.

I fully agree with ylur point on Yak. In what universe does a 20 year old come in and whine and cry and demand trades and all this crap.

Im hooing Yak comes into camp super motivated and ready to buy in and I think he will. You cant let the inmates run the asylum

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#68 Al Low
May 29 2014, 02:56PM
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Zarny wrote:

No Al, the point wasn't that the "team" regressed under Eakins.

The direct quote was "Yak didn't help himself but every player digressed under Eakins last year".

Which I pointed out was complete and utter BS.

I'll be generous and assume "digressed" was a typo since the word means to go off on a tangent.

Like I said...try reality sometime. And learn to read.

Seriously, are we all in some sort of grammar and composition class on this board? Get over yourself, bitch.

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#69 Manfly
May 29 2014, 03:18PM
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Anton wrote:

Oilers: gateway to KHL.

problem is....most of the guys going there from the Oilers have had minimal impact on this team. that's on them, not the Oilers!

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#70 optimism99
May 29 2014, 03:33PM
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Wonger wrote:

Engelland and Stoner would both be GREAT ADDITIONS!!! MACT listens to the Wonger even if OILERNATION DOESN'T!!!

I hope they get Stoner. I have been waiting for a name like that for my jersey!

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#71 Zarny
May 29 2014, 03:39PM
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Al Low wrote:

Seriously, are we all in some sort of grammar and composition class on this board? Get over yourself, bitch.

Spare me your drivel bitch.

First, nothing I posted had anything to do with grammar or composition. You should probably go look up what those actually are.

Second, you changed the context to fit your narrative and then got your panties in a bunch when I called you on it. Would you like a tissue?

Third, the Oilers did regress in the standings under Eakins. You really think that was due to coaching?

I suspect it had more to do with Dubnyk and LaBarbera letting in beach balls over the first 21 games. Because once the G was fixed the Oilers performed on par with last year. Did Eakins suddenly start coaching better? Not likely. The problem simply wasn't him in the first place.

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#72 RexHolez
May 29 2014, 03:40PM
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Zarny wrote:

No Al, the point wasn't that the "team" regressed under Eakins.

The direct quote was "Yak didn't help himself but every player digressed under Eakins last year".

Which I pointed out was complete and utter BS.

I'll be generous and assume "digressed" was a typo since the word means to go off on a tangent.

Like I said...try reality sometime. And learn to read.

Maybe 2 or 3 players didn't regress. Not exactly high praise for a coach.

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#73 Zarny
May 29 2014, 03:41PM
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The artist formerly known as Harry wrote:

I fully agree with ylur point on Yak. In what universe does a 20 year old come in and whine and cry and demand trades and all this crap.

Im hooing Yak comes into camp super motivated and ready to buy in and I think he will. You cant let the inmates run the asylum

I was actually referring to Ovechkin sulking not Yakupov.

Yak had a tough year but he'll be fine. He admitted he was frustrated which I have no problem with. I'd be more concerned if he wasn't frustrated.

There were countless trade rumors early in the season mostly because Yak is the most recent #1 pick but doesn't fill an obvious need. His agent simply said if the Oilers don't want Yak he'd welcome going to a team that does. That doesn't bother me either.

I expect Yak to come to camp super motivated too.

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#74 Zarny
May 29 2014, 04:01PM
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RexHolez wrote:

Maybe 2 or 3 players didn't regress. Not exactly high praise for a coach.

No that simply isn't the case.

First, half the roster was changed over so you can't really compare; but 4 of the top 6 F were as good or better under Eakins compared to Krueger. Yak, Schultz, Petry and Dubnyk are the only players who "regressed" under Eakins.

Yak and Schultz were sophomores who only played half a rookie season; let me grab my shocked face. Petry and Schultz were forced to play above their heads and Dubnyk had a meltdown mentally. I guess I missed which 2 D Eakins was supposed to ice instead of Petry and Schultz. He certainly wasn't the one who mind-f*cked Dubnyk.

I certainly don't think Eakins has proven himself to be a good coach; but he wasn't the problem. Neither were Krueger or Renney.

The roster simply isn't good enough.

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#75 OilClog
May 29 2014, 04:06PM
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Actually party with Stoner in the summer here on Van isle.. I'm gonna be pushing the Oilers hard on him.. "You know Clay I've told you before I'll tell you again.. Sign with the Oilers! I'm sick of wild equipment with signatures dammit"

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#76 RexHolez
May 29 2014, 04:12PM
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@Zarny

Damn you and your use of "stats" to back up an argument! I think the problem was expectations being much higher than the result

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#77 The Soup Fascist
May 29 2014, 04:25PM
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MessyEH wrote:

Sign me up for a Stoner Jersey.

Is "420" a legitimate NHL number?

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#78 David S
May 29 2014, 04:51PM
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Of course we'll never know but I half imagine Dallas Eakins signing into the site here as "Zarny".

Hey, it's my fantasy.

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#79 Zarny
May 29 2014, 04:58PM
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@RexHolez

Absolutely expectations being higher than results was a problem. But I also think expectations were out of line with reality.

I didn't expect a 4-15-2 start but the Oilers were destined for a tough start with Nuge and Gagner hurt, half the roster changing over and a new coach with different systems once again. A young team with terrible depth was never going to handle that well. Add in Dubnyk having a meltdown and the wheels fell off.

It was a serious miscalculation for Lowe and MacT to raise expectations and not put the team in a position to meet them.

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#80 Zarny
May 29 2014, 05:01PM
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@David S

LOL...sorry David but I'm just a failed hockey prospect turned engineer in Calgary.

And like I said, I don't think Eakins has proven himself to be a good coach. He made rookie mistakes but none were even remotely as critical to the Oilers' lack of success as simply having a sh*tty roster IMO.

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#81 Al Low
May 29 2014, 05:51PM
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Zarny wrote:

Spare me your drivel bitch.

First, nothing I posted had anything to do with grammar or composition. You should probably go look up what those actually are.

Second, you changed the context to fit your narrative and then got your panties in a bunch when I called you on it. Would you like a tissue?

Third, the Oilers did regress in the standings under Eakins. You really think that was due to coaching?

I suspect it had more to do with Dubnyk and LaBarbera letting in beach balls over the first 21 games. Because once the G was fixed the Oilers performed on par with last year. Did Eakins suddenly start coaching better? Not likely. The problem simply wasn't him in the first place.

Oh man, it honestly doesn't get any more tactless and classless than you. It's okay for you to express your opinion without having to make yourself feel all big and strong and tough with your little comments when you don't agree with somebody. Again, get over yourself.

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#82 Anton (still waiting for playoffs)
May 29 2014, 06:03PM
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Who was on the radio said, Oilers build like Sharks but coached like Kings. Instead teaching the team how to use their skills and speed that they were demanded to play a physical game to bunch of small forwards.

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#83 RexHolez
May 29 2014, 06:09PM
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Fight nice guys. Kevin Lowe is the enemy here!! He's the reason all us oiler fans are bitter!!!

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#84 Fatbob24
May 29 2014, 07:03PM
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@David S

Now every time i read Zarny i'm going to hear Dallas in my head! *Damit*

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#85 David S
May 29 2014, 08:12PM
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Fatbob24 wrote:

Now every time i read Zarny i'm going to hear Dallas in my head! *Damit*

What's funny is your brain can totally buy it. Dude makes a boatload of sense.

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#86 David S
May 29 2014, 08:14PM
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Zarny wrote:

@David S

LOL...sorry David but I'm just a failed hockey prospect turned engineer in Calgary.

And like I said, I don't think Eakins has proven himself to be a good coach. He made rookie mistakes but none were even remotely as critical to the Oilers' lack of success as simply having a sh*tty roster IMO.

Which is EXAAAACTLY what Dallas Eakins would say to you at a bar with a few drinks and no media around.

YOU CAN'T FOOL ME DALLAS EAKINS! LOL!

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#87 Dave
May 29 2014, 08:54PM
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Deryk WHO? Tell you what? I'm 6'2" and 240lbs and press 410. Tell you what - for the league minimum I'll donate my face and body work in the corners.

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#88 Max
May 29 2014, 09:17PM
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Haven't been on this site for weeks, the pitiful season has left me reeling and sick of hockey - even playoffs are not giving any enthusiasm. Thanks Oilers. So, let's look at the big picture - we have changed coaches (many times), we have changed the GM, we have changed players (actually a carousel of players, 99% of the team from 8 years ago gone.) NONE of these changes have made an iota of difference - we still suck, big time. SO what have we NOT changed. Well, POHO for one, and assistant and goalie coaches for another. Think Delauriers, think Dubnyk, think LaBarbera. Think lousy defense, think lousy special teams. Hmm, is there a pattern here?? Oh, I forgot, think amateur AND professional scouts too. These ones are the only ones we haven't changed - any suggestions anyone???? Or am I barking up the wrong tree. I'm really sick and tired of all this - anyone else agree????? Is there life after death - Jeez, I hope so

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#89 Chainsawz
May 29 2014, 10:33PM
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Zarny wrote:

No, every player did not regress under Eakins.

Hall continued to dominate playing tougher minutes.

Eberle was on pace for 63 pt over 82 games under Krueger. He put up 65 pt in 80 games this year playing tougher minutes.

Perron had a career year.

Pro-rated Nuge was on pace for 49 pt last year under Krueger. He put 56 pt in 80 games this year.

Gagner had a bad year due to injury and Yakupov had the same struggles as Galchenyuk. I'm sure only playing half a rookie season had nothing to do with it lol.

Try reality sometime; you'll like it.

This being Perrons career year is debatable considering his 11/12 season.

While not every player regressed, exactly 0 progressed. Troubling for a young team.

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#90 Fish
May 29 2014, 11:20PM
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Dave wrote:

Deryk WHO? Tell you what? I'm 6'2" and 240lbs and press 410. Tell you what - for the league minimum I'll donate my face and body work in the corners.

The worlds is filled with guys your size and bigger that can half ass skate. If it was that easy why aren't you and the rest of Golds Gym in the bigs? We can hack on these guys for not being good enough or tough enough,but don't pretend you could do what they could do. I guarantee you take any bruiser playing AHL and up and they embarrass you playing pick up.

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#91 Slats
May 29 2014, 11:26PM
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this sounds like an early "moral victory" acquisition/trade. . . .next time just get the bag with no pucks too.

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#92 LOIL99
May 30 2014, 09:54AM
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admiralmark wrote:

1) The Sky is Falling! The Sky is Falling!

2) He's a better 3rd pair then Fraser and can handle himself in the fisticuffs so meh.

3) Matheson is 50% right in his predictions at best.

4) Remember when they were getting Hendricks and all the Analytics people were spazzing about how bad a player he was?

Panic button sure is short around here.

You are using freaking Hendricks to show analytics can be wrong? HENDRICKS??

He was a 41% Corsi 5v5 player last year LOL. That's bottom 15 in the league. That is fringe NHL player.

The analytics people were EXACTLY RIGHT about Hendricks.

Typical oilers fan "he big and he hits so hes good".

Haha.

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#93 Marcus Aurelius
May 30 2014, 09:57AM
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Ahhhhhh... the Oilers continue to make failure-based decisions. How is this not surprising?

If this is actually true, we need to can our pro scouts immediately; I have no confidence in them at all.

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#94 LOIL99
May 30 2014, 10:07AM
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David S wrote:

What's funny is your brain can totally buy it. Dude makes a boatload of sense.

He is getting married next winter but I'm sure Zarny would be open to one last extramarital blowy from you. All you gotta do is ask! Don't be shy!

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#95 admiralmark
May 30 2014, 10:34AM
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LOIL99 wrote:

You are using freaking Hendricks to show analytics can be wrong? HENDRICKS??

He was a 41% Corsi 5v5 player last year LOL. That's bottom 15 in the league. That is fringe NHL player.

The analytics people were EXACTLY RIGHT about Hendricks.

Typical oilers fan "he big and he hits so hes good".

Haha.

Typical fan that spouts analytics like its the gospel. Hendricks was and is good for the Oilers in the role he plays. Try watching a hockey game once in awhile.

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#96 LOIL99
May 30 2014, 10:48AM
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admiralmark wrote:

Typical fan that spouts analytics like its the gospel. Hendricks was and is good for the Oilers in the role he plays. Try watching a hockey game once in awhile.

I can assure you that I watched more games than most one here. And I will admit that it was nice to see a gut out there that actually tries hard. But you cant argue those numbers. For every 4 events for the Oilers while he was on the ice, there were 6 against.

What we need is guys with his heart who aren't pilons out there. Every other team has them, why not the Oilers?

You will lose more games than you will win with guys like Hendricks on the team, even if he hits hard and tries hard.

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#97 ?
May 30 2014, 02:53PM
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jeremy wrote:

wow top 5 - which experts think this? Weber, Suter, Chara, Keith, Doughty, Pietrangelo, Larsen, Seabrook, are all better than Karlson so I do not know who you are kidding about being top 5, hell top 10 is a stretch

The first 6 are IMO bang-on. The second you put Larsen, though (I assume you mean Adam Larsson), I began to question your sanity :)

JK of course, but I do agree with the premise. Erik Karlsson is an unbelievable player, but as a 2 way guy, he never should have won the Norris over Shea Weber.

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#98 ?
May 30 2014, 03:00PM
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Zarny wrote:

Obviously lists are subjective but Karlsson is most certainly in consideration for top 5 D in the league.

Bleacher report ranked the top 50 D heading into 2013-14 and had Karlsson ranked 4th behind Chara, Weber and Keith.

To dismiss the offensive part of a Dman's game is ridiculous. If you're ranking the top 5 defensive defenseman fair enough.

If you're ranking the top 5 D overall though it counts and Karlsson put up 74 pt this year beating Keith by 13 pt. Karlsson doubled Doughty's production. To dismiss that borders on asinine.

Karlsson scored a hell of a lot more than Drew Doughty, but is there honestly a better defence man in the league today than DD?

Of course there is, I forgot…

Deryk Engelland

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#99 Dave
May 30 2014, 06:32PM
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"The worlds is filled with guys your size and bigger that can half ass skate. If it was that easy why aren't you and the rest of Golds Gym in the bigs? We can hack on these guys for not being good enough or tough enough,but don't pretend you could do what they could do. I guarantee you take any bruiser playing AHL and up and they embarrass you playing pick up." Meow. Remember the 80's? Recall 'No S%^# Ex-Lax?'

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