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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Jason Gregor
July 29 2011 02:08PM

The media landscape across the country has seen lots of movement that past few weeks, and there will be some in Edmonton on the TEAM 1260 this fall.

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Jason Gregor
July 29 2011 11:39AM

Edmonton will host most of the best under-20 players our country has to offer starting Wednesday August 3rd. Hockey Canada has invited 47 players to this year's camp; four goalies, 17 D-men and 26 forwards, but some of the invitees will likely be in the NHL in October, and won't be available to help Canada try and regain the gold medal after back-to-back silver medals.

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ST's Summer: Pass or Fail?

July 28 2011 03:43PM

When it comes to the relationship between an Edmonton Oilers GM and the fanbase, it can be a rocky road. What's that old song? Thin line between love and hate? What if we took all the anger, fury and confusion out of the conversation and looked at each transaction in a detached fashion? What would it look like?

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Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the Comparables

Jonathan Willis
July 27 2011 08:00PM

Comparing players is, at best, an inexact science. To find comparables for a player like Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is exceedingly difficult – not only is he a unique enough talent to go first overall in the NHL Draft, but our access to data is limited. For a statistical comparison, essentially we’re relying on two years’ worth of games played, goals, assists and total points.

In other words, the following exercise – where I identify draft picks with similar numbers to Nugent-Hopkins – is a flawed one. All it does is give us a snapshot of players with similar offensive production at the same point in their career as Nugent-Hopkins, without consideration for style, intangibles, team strength, defensive play, or any of the rest of it.

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