Day one of training camp isn’t very exciting. The media stands around slugging coffee, eating muffins,debating the reasoning behind the training camp lines and wondering how a station can report Pat Burns has passed away, only to recant the report due to erroneous information. ***I’m not making light of Burns’ health, rather how incredibly insensitive we’ve become as a society that people race to be the first to report someone has passed away. It’s disgusting in my view.***

 At Rexall the players get to visit the dentist, doctor, nutritionist, trainers and then find out how hard they worked in the off season during the Windgate and Vo2 tests. The rookies did their medicals last week so they had an easier day.

This year the line combinations were more interesting, because everyone was wondering where Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Magnus Paajarvi would line up. Here’s what you will see on the ice tomorrow at Rexall Place.
Dubnyk (40) and Pitton (50)
Whitney (6)/Petry (58)
Strudwick (43)/Blain (61)
Davidson (60)/Bendfeld (55)/Ehrhardt (75)
Penner (27)/Gagner (89)/Hemsky (83)
Schraber (74)/Pitlick (68)/ Ondrus (25)
Hartikainen (56)/Reddox (85)/Stortini (46)
Cornet (51)/Kytnar (64)/Abney (53)
Jacques (22) won’t be skating. He is still not recovered from surgery.
Deslauriers (38)/Khabibulin (35)/Bunz (1)
Peckham (49)/Gilbert (77)
Petiot (37)/ Plante (48)
Marincin (70)/Taylor (81)/Toigo (73)
Paajarvi (91)/Cogliano (13)/ Brule (67)
Giroux (12)/O’Marra (42)/MacDonald (57)
Hamilton (52)/Moran (20)/ Thomas (59)
MacIntyre (33)/Martindale (66)/ Livingston (69)
Aulin (47)
Gerber (29)/ Roy (1)
Vandermeer (2)/Foster (26)
Chorney (41)/Smid (5)
Belle (45)/Motin (39)/Schlumpf (72)
Hall (4)/Horcoff (10)/Eberle (14)
Jones (28)/Fraser (16)/Omark (23)
Stewart (36)/Vande Velde (54)/Pelss (63)
Gimblett (65)/Marquardt (62) Czerwonka (71)
Keep in mind that these are just training camp lines, but it is clear that Tom Renney wants Ales Hemsky to be excited and motivated from the start of camp. Last year Hemsky wasn’t impressed having J.F Jacques on his LW to start the season.
Horcoff and Hemsky haven’t been on a training camp line for the past three years, so there is still a chance they might eventually end up together, but it doesn’t surprise me that Horcoff, the best two-way centre, is flanked by two rookies.
The line combo that intrigues me the most is the Paajarvi/Cogliano/Brule trio. They have speed to burn, and if Cogliano’s off-season faceoff work pays off, then they could stick together. I don’t see Horcoff starting the season with two rookies, but that’s what the preseason is for.
I’ve been told that Omark will line up with some offensive minded players in preseason, but they also want to see how he can cycle the puck, so it makes sense that he lines up with Jones and Fraser for training camp.
  • Adam D

    So, wait, CnB is stupid because it’s pessimistic? Makes sense.

    We only finished last place in the league by an absolutely outrageous margin, filled all our holes with teenagers and obtained the services of one Steven H MacIntyre, who is hilariously absent from the TC line-ups. I imagine the assistant coaches of the various teams spent half an hour arguing about who had to take before hand-shaking on a gentlemen’s agreement to give him the wrong address for camp.

    Yeah, those CnB guys are absolute idiots.

      • Adam D

        I literally spent a minute searching for him, and the found him while reading another blog’s take on the line-ups. I am that stupid.

        I do, however, stand by my statement that they will probably give him the wrong address and ask Joey to suit up and fill his spot in the line-up.

  • Adam D

    Nice to see the good old oil trying to make our future into a good bunch of third line players. Please hockey gods don’t put these two up coming stars with such dead weight

  • Chris.

    Reasonable predictions out west:

    Tier One: Detroit. Chicago. San Jose. Vancouver. Los Angeles.

    Tier Two: Phoenix. St Louis. Nashville. Colorado. Annaheim.

    Tier Three: Calgary. Columbus. Edmonton. Minnesota. Dallas.

    Optimism is the word of the day… but I see six playoff spots already taken before the puck drops… and at least five or six teams with more depth, proven talent, and experience than the Oilers battling it out for the remaining two spots.

    • Jason Gregor

      You had five teams in first tier, but you have six spots already taken. Which tier two team is a lock for you?

      I think the top five are locks, but after that the other ten are all ??? in my opinion.

      • Chris.

        Hi Jason.

        Phoenix will make it. I don’t consider them a tier one style lock… but they’ll make it. St Louis, Nashville, Colorado, and maybe Annaheim/Calgary will be battling hard for only two spots… Edmonton is not really in the mix. Sure they might end the seaon only five or ten points back of the cut instead of thirty-two… but they’ll probably still be behind at least four or five teams.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Perhaps Pat Burns should have kept quiet through all this speculation, for a couple of days anyways. What a gift that would be, to see firsthand the outpouring of support of all those who cared and lives he touched while he was still here with us.

  • Chris.

    @ Chris:

    Put the Blackhawks in tier 2:

    In the local paper here in Chi-town, there was a story claiming that Pisani and Potulny would be able to fill the spots of the departed valuable role players like Byfuglien, Ladd, Versteeg, etc. sent out of town for cap reasons.

    LOL! What are they smoking?

  • Chris.

    Chicago is going to be right in there again, Turco had better numbers than Niemi playing for a poor team, they still have their top four D and most of the guys who left up front are easily replaceable. They have to find three top nine guys to replace Byfuglien, Versteeg and Ladd. Brouwer scored more goals than any of them. There’s one. Stallberg, the kid they got from Toronto, is a big body who can motor. He’s number two, imo. So they just need one more guy from one of their kids (Skille, Bickell, Beech) to step it up.

    They haven’t the depth they had but if they stay healthy they will challenge for the Cup again.

    As for our Oilers they’re going to probably be pretty poor this season but I’m looking forward to seeing the kids. Here’s hoping they make some strides and stay healthy.

  • Chris.

    Does anyone know the waiver status of Gerber? I had thought, between age and NHL games played, he would have to pass through. Anyone have an authoritative opinion?

    (and at the first mention of his two-way contract, I will cover you in Miley Cyrus CD’s and set Wanye upon you).

    • Jason Gregor

      Yes he has to clear waivers. A two-way contract has no bearing on it. All the two-way signifies is that he will get paid a different amount in the minors.

  • Chris.

    I agree Jason that what happened today regarding Pat Burns is disgusting, but it’s pretty rich coming from the guy was the first to report that Heatley waived his no trade clause to come to Edmonton last summer. Erroneously reporting that someone has died is far more serious than screwing up the report of a trade, but your “scoop” could have had huge consequences for Penner, Smid and Cogliano.

    Those who live in glass houses…

    • Jason Gregor

      Chloe since your memory is foggy, I was never close to being the first to mention the names in the deal. They were out for two days before I got info that Heatley had agreed to waive his no trade and then it didn’t happen. Big difference. Comparing a no-trade clause to death is a massive stretch on your part.

  • Jason Gregor

    I didn’t compare a no trade clause to death Jason. That’s why I wrote, “erroneously reporting that someone has died is far more serious than screwing up the report of a trade.” I was simply making a point that in an attempt to get the story first, you jumped the gun and reported something that wasn’t true. Agreed that the names had been out there for some time so there wasn’t a big issue there, but you made a huge factual blunder on a story that was arguably the biggest story for this franchise in 3 years.