Oilers vs. Predators Postgame: Pat Quinn Should’ve Saved His Rant

Nashville Predators: 6

Edmonton Oilers: 3

Pat Quinn should have saved his rant for this game; the Oilers looked far worse tonight than they did against Los Angeles.

Oilers Three Stars, According To Me 

1. Robert Nilsson. A beautiful power play night for Nilsson, who scored two goals and threw a big hit too. The second goal was a gorgeous little deke that had everyone excited – well, everyone other than Pat Quinn, who sounded less than impressed in his post-game press conference. His six shots was twice as many as any other forward.

2. Gilbert Brule. Had a solid game, regardless of which line he played on. One assist on the night and a few good chances; I’m still trying to figure out why he got demoted off the first line, and more importantly why Quinn slashed his ice-time tonight.

3. Ryan Stone. I was baffled by Stone’s demotion to the fourth line, particularly given that Quinn opted to replace him with Patrick O’Sullivan. He’s been a legitimate find this year; an NHL player who came from well back to earn a spot, and from where I sit he’s one of the nine best forwards on this team. 

Random Thoughts

Pat Quinn took shots at a bunch of unnamed players, rather strongly suggesting that there are guys on the team who care more about individual achievement than they do about team achievement. He also flat-out stated that some of the veterans were a big part of the problem.

J-F Jacques played far and away the fewest minutes of any forward, with 6:30; the next lowest total belonged to Zack Stortini, who just missed the 10:0 minute mark. I wonder if his 0/5 run on scoring chances had anything to do with that.

It was nice to see the MacTavish line blender out in full force as the game wore on; I was watching line matchups all game and it seemed like Quinn had planned to run Horcoff & Co. against the Erat, Arnott and Sullivan line, but once he abandoned that players started getting subbed in all over the place.

Line changes keep killing this team. Nashville’s fourth goal racked up a minus for Horcoff, Nilsson and O’Sullivan, but it wasn’t remotely deserved. Zack Stortini didn’t get the puck deep, and then his line (I believe Moreau and Cogliano were the other two guys) meandered over to the bench for the change. Horcoff jumped on to the ice at one point but had to jump back off to avoid a too many men penalty; by the time his trio finally did manage to get on the ice it was far too late.

The Steve Staios holding penalty in the third period brought the phrase “cascade failure” to mind. Most hockey plays aren’t the result of a single, definable error; rather they’re caused by a series of errors. In quality control this is generally known as “cascade failure”. In any case, the first failure was Denis Grebeshkov (who had a brutal night) whiffing on a pass. Than Jeff Deslauriers got ambitious and chucked the puck away rather than covering it; the puck ended up on a Nashville stick. Then the Oilers played ring around the rosy for a while before Staios finally got whistled. Team effort.

Dustin Penner took a beating from the refs tonight, and was quite correctly livid about it.

  • Jodes

    Johnathan, I think we're going to see a lot more games like tonight.. we just don't have the talent to compete night in and night out. They just don't want to work together as a group.

    Its pretty sad when this team goes on a 5 game winning streak and still doesn't do any real damage in the standings.

    Oh well.. I guess we'll just end up drafting another smallish "offensive" forward somewhere in the middle of the pack yet again.

  • Gregors dirty 'stash

    As Souray said after the game, two steps forward, two steps back. Five straight wins on the road and then two straight losses at home, brilliant! This is a 12th place team, they play like a 12th place team, they look like a 12th place team. By deduction, a new coaching staff hasn't changed the losing pattern. We can't attribute the losing culture to injured players as other teams suffer similarly with injuries. One of the posters referred to the Oilers as coach killers; seems accurate. Changes are necessary, if only to unload salaries. I see that Katz has appointed a new Executive VP. Does this mean that LaForge and Lowe will now report to Black? Would make sense as it would bring more accountability to the management of this sorry franchise.

  • Gregors dirty 'stash

    Made it to the game, line changes seemned like a problem all game long. Lots of guys being lazy with changes. Penner suprised me the most, he sulked over a few times causing potential problems.

    • He's only gone if he steps down. I don't think that this team is the way it is because of Quinn. This is what he was given and he is dealing with it the best that he can.

      Add your top forward and #1 goalie going down for extended periods and Quinn gets the free ride for this season.

      • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

        The way he is coaching has an extremly short shelf life. It maight not be one year, but it's not much longer then that.

        …as i've mentioned though, I'm thinking it's intentional.

        • Sammy D

          Is stepping down the same as stepping up? In this case up to the front office.

          I've always questioned why Quinn came here in the first place, espeically after Renney signed on. Unless they knew that Tambo and/or KLowe were going to be gone after this year and they wanted to create a transition plan…

          Forward thinking by the Oilers? What am I thinking? Sorry about that… won't let it happen again.

      • Gregors dirty 'stash

        True that. It would be interesting to see the results if we could play with the same line-up in a few consecutive games. The musical chairs game Quinn has had to play this season due to injuries must drive him nuts too, but can't be blamed on coaching.

  • Not much of a statement game for my star POS. My goat Moreau lived up to his billing though. O'Sully has as much physical prowess as Cogliano, but Cogs is putting in the effort, going into the corners (even if he skates it in to the corners himself too much).

    Man is it fun to watch Nilsson back on his game. This is what I was expecting at the start of the season.

    I'm not sure Grebs gets too many more games like that before Strudwick draws back in. You expect him to be rusty coming back, but Grebs is just a total disaster.

    I don't like the work Renney has done with the D this year. Gilbert and Grebs have taken HUGE steps back, Souray's been a liability (maybe injury), only Lubo and Smid have been up to snuff, and it LOOKS like they're the ones who have taken Renney's coaching to heart the least. Lubo looks like he always has, none of that one hand on the stick poke check crap. I think we were all right to question Huddy's dismissal over Bucky. Coverage down low has been atrocious all year.

    Lastly, I think JDD's puck-mishandling would be at least a little mitigated if the defense would come back a little faster. You would think they would figure it out by now, DON'T LET JDD HANDLE THE PUCK. Souray especially has been guilty of half-assing it coming back to retrieve the puck.

  • The Refs clearly missed two interference calls, and a couple slashes on Penners two broken sticks. I find it funny that the one interference call that should have been made, ended up going to Penner for trying to avoid the guy that was interfering with him, then has his body lunges around him, incidently losing partial balance and a arm fending the guy off takes a FLIPPING Penalty. LIKE WTF? Pretty freaken sad.

  • I don't mind competing for a top 5 pick, but from the sound of the radio crew last night we will be a cinch for a top 5 pick. It's quite a log jam for one of those picks right now with 10 team with < 34 points.

    The tease of the 5 game win streak has gotten hopes up amongst the faithful, but riding a rookie goaltender & a bunch of inconsistent forwards will not get us into the play-offs. I heard the Olympic break ends 1 day before the trade deadline (i'm unsure) so hopefully some moves are made next month to decide if we are going to finish 16-20 overall or 25-30 overall.

    • The Real Scuba Steve

      I agree, but I am losing faith in Tambo's ability to pull off a trade. He has really done nothing to move this team forward since he has arrived here.

      • Hahaha – I don't think we have a play-off team, even with a trade. We need a serious focus on getting some more young talent to build this team up for say 2013-2014 season in a new rink 😉

  • Gregors dirty 'stash

    So that wonderful idiot who put up all those gross, gay jokes about souray and stuff, is a Flames fan that I work with… I took care of him and his Flamerness!

  • Oiler Country

    Agreed, Quinn is having too much fun to quit. The only reason he steps away from the bench is that he gets Tambo's job.

    He can do the job as we all know.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    Even with a growing number of brain farts (Grebeshkov/Krushelnyski?), Rod Philips still brings something to the broadcasts. I hadn't heard Bob Stauffer do play by play before and I thought he did an excellent job when Rod was absent. Kevin Karius was okay too from what I heard of him.

    The knee-jerk MacTavish-esque line blending doesn't seem to be having the desired results when Quinn resorts to that. Tom Renney defended Quinn's instincts the other day but instincts or not…they didn't work.

    I think there should be at least 4 vacancies on the roster next year. Pick 4 from Comrie, Cogliano, Staios, Moreau, Grebeshkov, O'Sonofagun or Pisani. I don't see how Pisani can continue with a chronic disease like his and lengthy absences. He is no help to this team whatsoever. In a cap world that contract seems counter-productive. The 2006 playoff run was a hundred years ago. After 3 1/2 years that counts for nothing. Pisano plays with zero fire in his belly and looks emotionless out there. I wish the guy well but I just can't see him doing the team any good going forward. He's a big strong guy who plays like Liberace. He's not offencively skilled and he doesn't bring much in the way of competitiveness.

  • Adam Dyck

    JW's comment about some players "meandering" back to the bench for a change is so accurate. Being at the game last night it was actually shocking how casual the attitude is regarding changing on the fly with the puck not deep in the Preds zone. Moreau in particular reminded me of a guy in an over-50 rec league game. Doesn't this frustrate the coaching staff? Or the guys racing to jump back into the bench?
    Also, could someone enlighten me as to the upside of Grebs? I still don't see it. Horrible last night again.

  • Gregors dirty 'stash

    I didn't have a chance to watch the game. Can someone tell me why Gags and Cogs got like 12 and 10 minutes of ice time, which Pouty O'Sulkivan got like 19 mintues? WTF?!

    • Hemmercules

      Gags was a giveaway king last night. He still keeps trying those stupid little back passes once he gains the zone, the opposing dmen just scoop it up everytime. Did it twice in the PP I believe.

      Cogs was pretty much the same, the play died on the half boards or at the top of the circle everytime he gained the zone. He had a couple horrible line changes with him and Moreau changing at the same time. One change was probably the worst line change I have ever seen, four guys at the bench looking around cluelessly as the puck went in the net on a 4 on 1.

      As for POS, he had an average game. Probably got more ice because of other players playing worse.

      Is it just me or do the oilers try the blind pass out front 100 times a game and no one is there to fight for a garbage goal?? Get a man in front. Moreau should just be going to the net at all times. Too many guys waiting for things to happen and not enough guys making things happen. The fourth line is the only line that supports each other in the corners. The loses will keep pouring in if they play like last night, like Quinn said, too many individuals not enough team.

      • Hemmercules

        Ah I see, although Patty was a -3 on the night, so I'm not sure how he could have had a better game than some other people. I mean, were those goals against mostly on other people's gaffs, or was Sully in on some of the terrible action as well. I only caught about the last 6 minutes of the game on the radio. Seems like being on the ice for 3 goals against wouldn't suggest an overly decent game by him.

  • Hemmercules

    Pretty sure Patio needs those extra minutes to play blindfolded like he did last night. If you were watching him, it's pretty obvious he was using only his sense of hearing to guide him to where the play was happening. It takes longer to get to and from the bench, and just gliding back and forth reacting to the sounds of what's happening on the ice takes longer than when using your eyesight to guide you. Hence, the extra minutes he used up.

  • I wonder what we'd be saying about these line changes if they were happening under MacTavish. Probably something about the players trying to get him fired.

    There's a lot of stuff outside of the coaches control, but if they can't get the players to change lines with a sense of urgency, does that mean there's a disconnect?

  • Gregors dirty 'stash

    I lost my faith in humanity a long time ago… now i am begining to loose my faith in the Oilers doing anything better than a 25th place finish.

  • Just for general knowledge purposes:

    I'm generally a pretty patient guy, but every so often I just say, 'screw it' and do whatever I feel like.

    So hypothetically, if a commenter just kept piling up balderdash, I might just start removing his comments willy-nilly. No real reasons given; heck, I might not even have good reasons.

    The only way to avoid this rather arbitrary and random process is to try and avoid piling up balderdash.

    Naturally, this is all hypothetical and doesn't refer to any specific incident.

  • Milli

    I am still a little in shock at this DEBACLE. Get home, turn on TV, watch 6 beautiful minutes of hockey as I begin to think, Man, these guys are finally getting it….then, I poke my eyes out for the next 54 minutes at the brutality that is my team. From grebs to staois to a very unsouray like souray, oh patty O when will you go???? On and On..

  • Quin has made a few line combo's that did not make sense to me. I also have wondered about his powerplay line-ups. Things will come together and the oilers will do what the Blues did last year…

  • Hemmercules

    The only thing more exciting than the game was being 11 numbers off the 50/50. Winning ticket was from the same book that my 5 tickets were purchased from. So not only was I the closest I have ever been to winning the 50/50 in 10 years, the game was one of the most frustrating. FML

  • My vote for the Olympic Dream team No. 1 power play unit:

    Centre: Marc Andre Poilet

    LW: Toby Petersen

    RW: Jason Strudwick

    Defenseman: Igor Ulanov

    Quarterback (on the blue line): Shawn ScoreOff

    Goalie: Michael Morrison

    (Sorry, I didn't check to see where these guys were born.)

    • Hemmertime

      Okay since no one has pointed it out I feel it is my duty to say this.

      REALLY? I understand not checking where someone is born and throwing down a Patrick Kane, or following along your theme of crappy players Eric Weinrich (Americans) but…

      Igor? IGOR?!?! Igor F*cking Ulanov? The first thing to come to mind is a good ol' boy from Saskatoon for you?!? What other place could he be from? The only other name with more connotation would be камрад Иван По-русски – for you heathen that is Comrade Ivan Smirnov. Igor god damned Ulanov… sigh.

      He is Russian by the way.

  • Tambi is pathetic, but what really makes it bad is how he is so quick to justify his actions. He blames his inaction on a general "lack of deals being made across the league". He blames his inaction on a desire to see just "what sort of team we have once we get healthy". He blames his inaction on the fact that it is "a very difficult league to get wins". He steadfastly believes we don't need a number one centre because we have one already (puke).

    It sours my stomach to listen to him. I don't even think he's lying to us — he just truly is that lame. I know that Quinn and he worked together once. Do you think Quinn knew he was getting into a situation with a lousy GM when he agreed to coach?

    No question that Quinn cares about winning. I don't think Tambi does, though.

    • I think it's a little presumptuous to assume Tambo doesn't care about winning.
      I think it's just a case of a guy being in way over his head. I imagine he sat there for all those years as Burke's/Nonis'/Gillis' sidekick and thought to himself "well if these guys can do it why the hell can't I?" And then he actually got a GM job and found out there was a little more to it than signing contracts, talking on the phone and watching hockey games.

      I'm still willing to cut him a tiny bit of slack, since he did inherit this clusterf*ck of a team. But he's situated firmly in the bed right now, and I'm pretty sure he can feel the turtle head starting to poke out a little bit. I assume it's only a matter of time before he officially craps the bed. Who knows though. Hopefully we're all completely wrong and he pulls a rabbit out of his hat this summer and this team can start living up to our fairly low expectations. I won't hold my breath though.

  • Milli

    "The only thing worst than that would be if MacT iced Toby Peterson or M. Poilet in the final minute of the Gold medal game."

    Did you know Toby played the point on the PP in the Western conference finals … on a team not named the Oilers?

  • @ Jeanshorts

    Was he really handed a cluster of a team though?

    He has 2 mid to high end first liners

    3 mid to high end second liners (and two more guys that should be there)

    Arguably a top 10 dman (Vish)

    I guy that's been arguably a top 10 dman (Souray)

    Other then a starting goalie, the holes he needed to fill were role players (ie the guys that went in the Vish trade) to at least be competitive, those players are both cheap and relatively easy to find.

    • Edit: 1 mid level 1st liner (hemsky)
      2 mid level 2nd liners (horcoff,penner)

      I'll give you the 2 good D though

      The problem isn't that we have enough talent and no role guys, it's that we have a terrible combo of both. We need a gamebreaker just as badly as we needed Ryan Stone