If The Oilers End Up With A Lottery Pick…

If this edition of the Edmonton Oilers manages to finish in the bottom five of the NHL, they’ll have done something few teams have done in the salary cap era. 

This morning, Tyler Dellow looked at teams spending more than 90% of the cap who have managed to contend for a lottery pick.  The Oilers currently sit at 98.6% of the cap; only one team in the salary cap era (the 2006-07 Chicago Blackhawks) has managed to spend that much and earn a spot in the draft lottery, so if the Oilers can pull it off (and despite recent victories, that’s plausible) it will represent an achievement of sorts.

In any case, Dellow looked at the nine teams to manage such woeful incompetence despite a relatively high payroll, and again with the exception of the 2006-07 Blackhawks (Khabibulin) all were plagued by lousy goaltending.  He also looked at the general managers of those teams; with the exception of Dean Lombardi, were fired or retired shortly thereafter.  Dale Tallon managed to hang on for two years before getting fired for other incompetence, while Larry Pleau managed to extend his job by bringing in a replacement. 

I strongly recommend reading Dellow’s piece to get an idea of the true level of mismanagement involved in such a feat.  I’m of two minds on this one; I want to see the Oilers add a franchise talent via the draft lottery this summer, but I also feel that the current management group should be completely cleared out if the Oilers find themselves in that situation – Kevin Lowe’s already on the fast track to the sunset, but such a poor performance would certainly warrant a full burn it to the ground and start from scratch approach in the front office.

Wouldn’t it?

  • Cap figures change throughout the season. Are the numbers provided at the start of the season? At the 40-game mark? After the trade deadline? At the end of the season?

    Tambellini should be fired after two seasons because he can't move awful contracts Lowe handed out? I think not. Blame him for not adding needed players to the roster and for over-reaching in length of term to Khabibulin, but for being up against the cap?

    • Hemmertime

      Or you could, ya know, compare him against his peers and see how little of a difference he has made vs their first 2 years. Also, Tambo shouldn't have come out saying "We will change the face of this team" and other goals. His failure to live up to the expectations he set for himself.

      The fact we are so close to the cap does hurt his ability to make major changes, and for all we know Katz is too. Waiving players after filling holes would be a plan in the offseason but maybe Mr.Moneybags doesn't wish to bury salary in the minors. Getting rid of Nilsson would have freed up the money for 1-2 defensive players.

    • Hemmercules

      What really has he done so far to clean up that mess??? Bringing in players we don't need and signing a goalie to a Lowe style contract, not a great start. Personally, I'm giving Tambo until training camp next season until I totally write him off. So far I havent been at all happy with our new GM.

      • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

        Well once some of the salaries are able to be moved. After this year I would think Tambo could have a few of the bad salaries moved. I'd say that next year barring any injuries we should be at least a playoff team if not I would have to start questioning management.

        I'm writting this year off. Sure we could make the playoffs, but if we don't I won't be disappointed.

        If next year though say Bulin is hurting us again and nothing has been done to fix the holes, then I will call for Tambo's head.

  • homerer

    That is a fair point, but can you law the blame at Tambo's feet? he has only been here two years. He is still recoiling from Klowes crap shoot tenure as GM. If there isn't a marked improvement over the next year, my opinion will change.