Real Talk

So we made a friend awhile back who has the most interesting skill. It seems he knows exactly what’s going on in the room right now for the Oil. Stranger still, it seems he is ok with letting some info out to your ol’ pal Wanye from time to time.

Now this isn’t the kind of friend that you would call up on a regular basis and ask, “Does Kyle Brodziak put on his left or right skate first?” But it is the kind of friend with whom we have an understanding that when we run into each other from time to time he’ll let us know if anything is new or interesting behind those enormous sliding doors. And his message is pretty much confirmation of what is widely suspected and increasingly becoming known — there are cracks in the room these days that are expanding at a slow but steady rate and it has been affecting play on the ice.

Why are their cracks forming you ask? It seems the Oil –- particularly the youth movement — no longer enjoy the lack of respect doled out by their head coach on a continual basis and many feel his methods of coaching are no longer effective.

Translation: MacT doing dick stuff to the team will eventually make his players hate him. It’s pretty much that simple.

It would seem there is a constant stream of disrespect aimed at the players these days. As it was explained to us, no one incident that stands out above the rest but a bunch of continual things that has helped MacT lose big chunks of the room.

MacT Dick Move #138,962

The Oil played the Coyotes on Dec 22 going into the Christmas Break. Santa delivers and the Oil win 4-2 to send the team into the break on a relative high note given how things were unfolding during the first three months of the season. Now you know how it is around Christmas: you want to be home with your families if at all possible. The understanding seemed to be win on the 22nd and part for the holidays filled with Christmas cheer.

But not with ol’ Coach here in E-town.

In his infinite wisdom, MacT switched it up and made the team attend practice on the 23rd. As a direct result all players couldn’t get back east to their families for Christmas as many had planned. Instead they were stranded in Edmonton and away from their families over the holiday. Classy.

Now we can hear you out there saying:

“Shoot Wanye! Miss Christmas? Boo-freakin-hoo. If I made Lubo money it would be Christmas every day! I would hire actors to be my family and they would go with me everywhere and every morning we would gather under the tree and open presents 365 days a year!

Are you suggesting that:

1) I should believe that missing Christmas makes the PK bad; and,

2) I should care about these rich athletes in the slightest?”

This is completely fair. If we made Lubo money we would hire Lubomir Visnovsky himself to carry us around on his back all day long. “Mush Lubo!” we would yell, “to the liquor store!” And dutifully, Lubo would piggy back us all the way to Liquor Depot because the only thing better than making Lubo money is making even more money. If we happened to pass someone being piggybacked by a cheaper Oiler –- say Liam Reddox -– we would make Lubo stop and we would stand there laughing heartily at the cheaper player and his fare. But that’s just how we would roll.

But back to the Oilers missing Christmas. Rich athlete or not, people want to be home for Christmas if at all possible. A last-minute practice after a win is a dick move plain and simple. This is a single instance that came up in our conversation and the message was, “There are a million things that have gotten the room to where it is today. This is an easy one.”

It’s a coaching style — plain and simple. And if you believe that an under-performing team with myriad players who are under-utilized, miscast, miscoached or poorly motivated may not be responding to the style of their current coach, then you arrive at the same conclusion we did last night when we were hearing these tales.

There has to be a change in coaching style

There are “players’ coaches” who cater to the room like Tom Renney in New York. Coach Renney let Jagr sit in the front seat of the Rangers bus anytime he wanted and he had an unlimited Xbox rule on the road. JJ loved his videogames and riding shotgun, and he produced as a result of the treatment he received.

Then are also hard asses like John Tortorella who used to beat Martin St. Louis without mercy in the dressing room before games until Oren Koules bought the team and promptly destroyed it. St. Louis would crawl into the corner and hide for 20 minutes, then he would go out on the ice and dominate. This hard-assed style worked for him.

Then there are coaches who have lost the room and act the arrogant fool. They take a hard line with rookies while showing Buddha-like patience when veterans have mistake-riddled games. Think the hardass line is working, Nation? Think the team is finding its motivational state of balance? Hells no — its Chakra is destroyed these days.

Look at this graph, it’s all very clear:

As the team mails in game after game after game, it’s becoming evident that MacT is no longer capable of coaxing, cajoling or Jedi mind-tricking the Oilers into consistent performances this season. His coaching style of taking a continual hard line doesn’t seem to be having much effect anymore — and as we all know you can’t teach an old dog new tricks.

Instead you hire a new dog who has a whole new bag of tricks. Right?

Miss Christmas with your family. What a dick.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    @ Travis Dakin:

    No, I'm not saying I want the Oilers to be a trap team, I think what Klima and I are getting at is that we would rather see any system being employed – and yes, that includes the dreaded trap – over whatever the hell is going on with the team this year. Trap teams may be boring but pardon me if I'm not particularly thrilled with watching the Oilers scrabble around against the worst team in the league, waiting for the 4th line to kick a couple pucks in.

    Having said that, I would love to see them trap for a few games just so I could see the Oilers with some puck possession and clap my hands and squeal with delight at the novelty of it all.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Mike Krushelnyski wrote:

    Not only that, he phoned up Sam Gagner’s little cousins on Christmas Eve and told them that there’s no Santa Claus

    …for his heart was 3 sizes too small.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Mike Krushelnyski wrote:

    Not only that, he phoned up Sam Gagner’s little cousins on Christmas Eve and told them that there’s no Santa Claus

    Lol! Quote of the Day

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Penner hates MacT. Penner has tremendous upside… Nilsson hates MacT. Nilsson has tremendous upside…. HMMMMM. I'm pretty sure the right move for this organization is to dump both players immediately, to the lowest bidder, and demand some money back.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Not a shocker at all – in fact I think we might know the same person Wayne. This is just one of the many dick moves MacT has made this year, all with the blessings of his overlord, Kevin Lowe.

    These guys are well past their expiry dates. I thought there would be change once Katz took over. I guess it's just more of the same BS with this team.

    Hey Daryl, would you mind refunding a portion of the money I've spent on season tickets? Your product is severely defective and useless.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    @ Mike Krushelnyski:
    @ Klima85:

    Good lord men, Have you lost your minds? Are you that desperate that you'd have the team sell their souls to the dark lord of Trapping hockey for the sake of a few 1-0 wins? Hells no. This team has all the offensive tools to be scary. A new system is definately needed but one that caters to the skill set assembled. MacTavish has done enough Offense squashing on his own team, let alone be even more focused on the other teams.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    LOL – CHAKRA, The graph totally sums up the feeling of the players. I suggest a team coached by Deepak Chopra, the players would meditate before games, smell incense & become intouch with each of the 7 Chakras. Deepak would then pep them up with a speech stating "In the midst of movement and chaos, keep stillness inside of you.” Then the oilers go on a 25 game winnning streak…

    I personally think the my GAFM is at an all time low. GAFM is my own "Giva F*ck Meter". The players in Oilers silks are probably just as sick of all te BS as the fans are by now.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    @ Travis Dakin

    I'm not saying they need to trap all the time, what i'm saying is that it's the only time MacT has mixed it up. He tried a new system, caught some teams off guards. the change from what ever the hell system he is using now (your guess is as good as mine)might force some of the players to buy in a little more and commit to a better effort. He can't bench everybody, so he has to try something new.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Travis Dakin wrote:

    @ Klima85:
    I don’t care how bad they are, Don’t you ever suggest a trap style. I will puke.

    Could it really be worse than whatever they're supposed to be playing now? The on-ice product this year has been absolute garbage. Zero entertainment value.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    MacT and Lowe in a nutshell.

    Power hungry – (also known as spare parts for most of their playing careers…certainly Mr. Mousse)

    Think they are smarter than everyone else – too many examples. Let's just go with "Bustamakki".

    Dicks – though that would more be MacT and Laforge (know someone who worked for the Oilers, Dude is apparently a psycho, and no I don't have a link).

    Ladies and gentlemen….your Oilers brain trust.

    Can't imagine why nearly 20 years of mediocrity has prevailed. We went from Pocklington/Sather/Fraser to this.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    My god, how many chances does this guy get? it is so frustrating to watch day in and day out. The only good coaching move MacT has evedr made was to trap like mad in the 06 playoffs. But now that's "boring to watch" and "not oiler hockey". it might acutally give this team a chance to compete against some better teams. Sadly not competing every night is the new "oiler Hockey"

  • I'm a Scientist!

    Well, I don't know why but, Wanye I trust in you. I believe what you say to be true. Therefore, I am now finally 100% commited to JeanshortsandBaggedmilk's fire MacT crusade. Are you guys going to swing that Van up to Fort Mac or do I gotta hitch a ride and meet you somewhere? Damn you MacTavish… Damn you and only you to hell!