Rexall ice and Stoll’s new life

Remember when Rexall Ice was the envy of the league and ice maker Dan Craig was carried around on the shoulders of the Oilers after every game in celebration?

Remember last year how the ice looked like a Sprite Slurpee some nights and caused Rod Phillips to sigh that “the ice here at Rexall tonight is not up to par”?

We just had an interesting conversation with a refrigeration engineer who just finished up some major equipment upgrades to Rexall.

“There was some real issues with parts of the ice plant, and this had resulted in poorer ice quality in years past. Though the future of the arena is unclear, we were given the green light to replace some large pieces of equipment. This should significantly improve the quality of the ice next year and put Edmonton back near the top of the league.”

If we had a nickel for every interesting conversation we have had with a refrigeration engineer this would leave us with a grand sum of $0.05. Still its good to hear that the ice will improve next year, though it reduces the chances that a Stefan-to-Hemsky will happen again soon.

One other thing

We see that Jarret Stoll signed for four years at $ 14.4 million. This is can only be described as a win-win-lose-lose scenario. Stoll signs a rich deal that will allow his step children to be to continue to live in style—win. LA, lacking every ingredient that is required to succeed in the NHL, succeed in their desperate attempt at locking down some potential leadership—win. Sadly this means Stoll will be a King for the foreseeable future—lose—and shan’t play in a game of any real importance for years to come—lose. Still Kudos to Stoll for straight up tricking the Kings into a long-term deal you sneaky bugger.

Bigups to the OilersNinja for keeping us in the know.

  • I remember playing a game at Rexall a few years back (ok, more than a few) when it was still considered the best ice in the league.

    It left me wondering just how bad the ice in the other NHL arena's actually were considering even at that time I thought the ice at many of the community rinks was better than Rexall's.

    Anyways, any improvment is good improvement. Hopefully the difference is noticable.

    As for Stoll, I would expect a decent rebound year for him this season, points wise. He made a lot of hay for the Oilers on the PP when he was used as a shooter. Souray, when he is in the line up, took that role away from him.

    In his new situation, considering LA moved their PP "go to" blueliner the other way in the deal I suspect Stoll will have ample opportunity to fluff up his totals again.

  • The plant is only part of the problem. Ever notice that when you were a kid you would have to wear a sweater to the game?

    Because of complaints from "fans" the Oilers front office decided to raise the tempature in the building. It's true… heat = bad ice folks.

  • I had a chance to skate on Northlands ice about a decade ago when I was involved in coaching my kid's team and they had an end-of-season party there. That ice was was freaking awesome. Agree with SRB that I never skated so fast — which was partly adrenaline — but what struck me was how that ice seemed to have "grip", that when I wanted to cut it responded instantly without the skidding I and my lousy skating stride was accustomed to on arena ice.

    Last year I attended a couple of games where I could see for myself that the ice sucked, huge gouges visible all the way from Row 23 and that oddly unreflective shade of white that is characteristic of choppy ice. Other visible clues included bad bounces of the puck that might have baffled the '85 Oilers, let alone the Oil of '08. It's very hard to play the high-speed-high-skill game on shitty ice, and the product is much less fun to watch no matter who the teams. Let's hope the ice makers have fixed the problem.

  • Well you got us talking amongst ourselves on the boards and off. But we also ponder the legitimacy and if you just have a step on the local media.

    Or can we go conspiracy theory / new rink premise. We don't get to know the ice rink is upgraded because they just don't want us to know. *insert sci-fi musical interlude*

    One way or another, the crazy hardcores (and there are many of us) will notice if the ice is significantly better.