Everybody with a functioning brain stem, and even some hockey writers, have realized for awhile that Edmonton Oilers captain Ethan Moreau had to go. Today, he’s gone, having been placed on waivers, according to TSN.
For the good of both sides of this equation, the rebuilding Oilers as well as Moreau, it was time to make a clean break. Time to look ahead with the likes of Taylor Hall, Sam Gagner, Ryan Whitney, to name just three pieces of the puzzle in Edmonton’s future, instead of back.
I wrote everything I had to say about what I think of Moreau as a man and a player back on February 27 before the NHL trade deadline, when I mistakenly was dead-sure he was gonzo-alonzo, so I won’t get all weepy and repeat it here. It holds true today.
Thanks, Ethan, for giving everything you had for as long as you could on the ice and for never relenting in your commitment to this city off the ice, even when fans were less-than-kind during these four straight seasons out of the playoffs.
I’ve no issue whatsoever with GM Steve Tambellini’s decision to tie the can to Robert Nilsson and Patrick O’Sullivan as well. There was clearly little demand for them on the trade market, so I didn’t see the need to drag their ouster out over the summer.
Nilsson was a great quote and delightful guy, but he was a frustrating player whose willingness to work never matched his talent level. He was a coach-killer, in that you never knew what you were going to get from him game-to-game. He’ll catch on somewhere else.
O’Sullivan was not a delightful guy or a particularly great quote, but I can put that down to a difficult childhood that has been well-documented. He never consistently showed his best stuff here and, in my mind, never really fit in. Time for a second opinion elsewhere.
As for Monday’s news, I’ve got no bone to pick with Tambellini over giving Ryan Potulny and Marc Pouliot the bum’s rush by failing to make them qualifying offers. With Pouliot, I believe there’s a player in there somewhere, but health and circumstance never saw him deliver here.
Is it just me, or is Bob Stauffer very well promoted by TEAM 1260 Radio, where he broadcasts 10 hours a week with Oilers Lunch, and all but ignored in terms of promotion on 630 CHED, where he does 82 games a season of play-by-play and analysis?
I haven’t talked to Stauffer about it, but I’m wondering if there’s a disconnect at 630 CHED. At TEAM 1260, he’s heavily promoted on the station’s website and in voice promos, and you can see him around the city on bus ads — they needed a vehicle that big.
I don’t see anywhere near the same level of bump at 630 CHED. Most recently, at the Entry Draft, promos and lead-ins focused on Dan Tencer. Fine to give Milhouse his due, but you’d be hard-pressed to know Stauffer was even in Los Angeles, based on promos.
I’m no expert on the wireless, or promoting same, but it only makes sense to me, whether you’re operating a radio station or a newspaper, that you promote the guys with the juice and the numbers.
If you’re TEAM 1260, you bump the snot out of Jason Gregor because he’s the guy.
That’s exactly what happens. Down the dial, where Stauffer is the Big Dog and the guy with the real inside track on the Oilers, not so much. What’s the deal with that?
I’M JUST SAYING . . .
— Stauffer was flat-out wrong by suggesting today that big John Scott is an average fighter. Jim Matheson and I have been pitching the hulking defenceman as somebody the Oilers should target as a UFA, while Stauffer is leaning toward Derek Boogaard.
First, Scott will be relatively cheap. Second, Scott fills two needs — he’s a passable third-pairing D-man who can platoon in and out of the press box and he’s tough. YouTube Scott fighting George Parros or Alex Bolduc of the Canucks and tell me he’s an average fighter. Or ask Dean Arsene. Nothing average about that big right hand when Scott brings it from halfway across the rink.
— I’d like to see former captain Jason Smith back here as a coach, if he’s still not contractually obligated to Ottawa.
Smith was the kind of workmanlike player who often successfully makes the jump to coaching because he had to study the game and work to get better to stay in the NHL.
Nothing, except that mean streak, came easily to Smith. He’s respected. If I’m Tambellini, I’d be getting on the phone.
— The way I went on and on suggesting the Oilers would draft Tyler Seguin and not Hall first overall, I expected to catch a lot more grief around here. Clearly, you knuckleheads have gone soft.
— Unless I’m missing somebody, the moves Tambellini made Monday and today leave just two players — Shawn Horcoff and Ales Hemsky — left from the 2006 Stanley Cup final team.
Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.