Duane Sutter Named Professional Scout

Jonathan Willis
August 22 2011 04:45PM

The Edmonton Oilers have added Duane Sutter to their professional scouting staff, as per an announcement made on the team’s official website earlier today.

The announcement quoted general manager Steve Tambellini as saying, “We are absolutely thrilled to be adding someone of Duane’s caliber to our scouting staff. Duane brings a vast knowledge of the game and will complement our staff very well.”

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Machiavelli: On Counsellors

Jonathan Willis
August 22 2011 02:52AM

It has been customary the last few years for fans to scrutinize each decision the Oilers make and try to identify the responsible party. Scouts make a good selection; we try and find the regional scout who would have seen him the most (and we do the same when the choices are poor). A series of poor trades are made, and along with the general manager we question the professional scouts – have they been letting the team down?

Political philosopher Niccolo Machiavelli wrote on the how a hierarchical group – like a scouting staff or a hockey team – makes decisions.

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One-Goal Games

Jonathan Willis
August 21 2011 04:32PM

The Edmonton Oilers’ record in one-goal games last season was 9-10-12; put another way they won nine and lost 22 of the games they played that were decided by just one goal.

This statistic has been cited by various figures with the team at various points of last season and over the summer as a reason for optimism – after all, if the Oilers lost that many close games, it follows that if they compete a little harder in those contests they could significantly improve their record, doesn’t it?

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Did The Oilers Have Bad Injury Luck Last Year?

Jonathan Willis
August 21 2011 07:57AM

Injuries at the NHL level can have tremendous impact on the team. In 2009-10, the Oilers’ fall to last place in the NHL was blamed in part on injuries to Ales Hemsky and Nikolai Khabibulin. In the comments section here, various parties pointed to those injuries and asked how a team like the Penguins would do without Sidney Crosby and Marc-Andre Fleury (one hears that less often these days, for multiple obvious reasons).

Were the Oilers been particularly unlucky when it came to injuries in 2010-11?

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Eric Belanger, Job Stealer

Jonathan Willis
July 29 2011 04:28PM

When it comes to the Oilers’ centre depth chart, it’s easy to forget about Eric Belanger, who the organization added via free agency this summer. Shawn Horcoff had something of a bounce-back year playing with the kids, Sam Gagner’s till quite young and of course Ryan Nugent-Hopkins’ debut is highly anticipated. Add it all up and there seems to be little room for Belanger, who some have slotted for fourth-line duty.

I think Belanger’s going to surprise.

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