Khabibulin on IR

Nikolai Khabibulin has been placed on injured reserve by the Edmonton Oilers. The veteran goalie has suffered a groin pull and word this afternoon has the club recalling Martin Gerber from Oklahoma City.

Khabibulin has struggled of late and his statistics (15gp, 4.07 .879 this season with the Oilers) are close to league-worst. Gerber (13gp, 2.56 .911 AHL) will no doubt share duties with Devan Dubnyk (4gp, 2.99 .923 with EDM).

    • Yeah the Khabibulin signing was junk, but so what? I’ll take 4 years of him as a better signing than 15 years of Kovalchuk, 12 years of Luongo, and 10 years of Lecavalier.

      And yes his summer was stellar, he got rid of 3/4 of the problemed vets all the while taking back nothing. Vandermeer on a 1-year deal, ooooohhhh. Yeah he’s crap, but he’s gone next year and it’s not like the fans are signing his pay cheque.

      If a team is focused on rebuilding, at some point they have to play the players within the organization. That’s what the Oilers are doing, and it’s evident that they’re not good enough. Rushing out to make a deal because they’re playing ridiculous isn’t going to do much. Who wants anything the Oilers are willing to part with anyway? You people act like being a GM is a cake walk.

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    Ya the whole O’Sullivan for Vandemeer thing was a waste, could have just bought out his contract and saved money and hassle. Still stuck with a crap defenseman and what was Tambo thinking signing Strudwick, he could have found someone better through free agency. Tambo made moves the majority of which have been nothing more than a huge pile of steaming crap.

  • @ baggedmilk:

    So buying out one guy, trading another (who he acquired to begin with) for an overpaid plug and losing one guy on the waiver wire is a “stellar” summer? C’mon.

    All Tambellini did was clear out some forwards so the rookies could step in. That’s all.
    We can discuss leaving obvious holes as being part of the rebuilding plan, but Tambellini didn’t do anything especially brilliant, and despite no expectation that he ice a winning team he couldn’t keep himself from retaining Strudwick, starting the year with three goaltenders, and sticking Paajarvi in the league a year too early.

    He didn’t have a bad summer, by the unexacting standards of a rebuilding team. But it sure wasn’t stellar, and his previous work is a big part of the reason this team is where it is today.

    • Come on Willis you know better than to think it works as smoothly as calling up vets and asking them to join the Oilers to fill holes on a losing team that’s in Edmonton to boot.

      Yeah Vandermeer is overpaid and a glorified pylon but he’s a transitional player, as is Strudwick. Who’s to say that a year from now Plante/Petry won’t be ready to step up and fill in on D. Having them signed for 1-year each, on a year when anyone who’s paying attention knew that it was going to be a struggle is hardly a bad thing. I find it hard to believe that anyone expected those two to be as bad as they have been, but hindsight is always 20/20.

      And you’re right, he cleared room for the kids which needed to be done. And how is Paajarvi so unready for the NHL? His 6-points is only 1 behind Hall, 2 behind Penner, and he’s ahead of Cogliano and Brule as well. The difference in bringing him over at 20 rather than 19 is marginal at best, he’s learning the North American game and it would have been the exact same whether it was this year or next.

    • D-Man

      Saying the Tambo’s summer was stellar is inaccurate – but you do need to cut him some slack.. You forget that he tried to sign Malholtra – Malholtra respectfully declined the offer to play for a winner… And you can’t use Paajarvi as an argument – he only has 16 games under his belt (and as I recall he drew two penalties last night with his speed)…

      In my eyes, I’d give Tambo a B- for his summer.. He does get an F for Khabby, and I don’t believe any of us would have thought Strudwick would have played this month having Vandermeer come in as a #5 or 6# defensemen…

  • @ baggedmilk:

    I’m not saying much really – heck, I’m still on board with a rebuild.

    But I’m of the opinion that there’s nothing special about dumping a few underperformers and then washing one’s hands of all the other problems on the team.

    I’m also of the opinion that when a team needs to rebuild, the people who guided the team to the cellar shouldn’t be the ones charged with guiding it out.

    • Dyckster

      “I’m also of the opinion that when a team needs to rebuild, the people who guided the team to the cellar shouldn’t be the ones charged with guiding it out.”

      That’s a ‘Confucius say” moment right there. Well put JW.

    • I wasn’t talking about you specifically, I’m just shocked by some “fans” who know everything from their arm chairs. I personally think he did a good job getting things done this summer that needed to be done. That being said, there’s always room for improvement.

      I agree that those that brought the Oilers to where they are may not be the right people to get them out, yet, this is the first time I’ve seen such a different philosophy from management. Waiting to see what happens with what we’ve got is infinitely better than trying appease fans by chasing whales every summer.

      I’m willing to give Tambellini the benefit of the doubt, and see what he can do with this rebuild. It’s going to take more than 20/40/60 games for me to form an opinion on the job he’s done.

    • You mean the same way Brian Burke has expected the Leafs to push for the playoffs this year and last? Steve Tambellini isn’t the only one guilty of expecting more from the team in front of him. Unlike Toronto and Calgary, at least Edmonton isn’t a cap team this year.

    • The Real Scuba Steve

      Finally. Someone on this site once again questions the validity of having Tambellini managing the rebuild. At this point the only aspect he’s clearly established mastery at is the “getting high draft picks” part. The other aspects (player development, assessment, procurement) don’t look so hot. I just don’t see how he’s the guy to do this.

      As an aside, I have a strange idea that next season will see the Oilers once again paying Souray to pay in the AHL with the additional bonus of “loaning” Khabibulin to the KHL or a alternative European league a la Christobal Huet. Nothing like have nearly $8.5 million in salary playing in other leagues. Just a hunch.

  • @ baggedmilk:

    I think most Oiler fans are optimistic that Steve Tambellini can get the team out of its current mess. I generally tone down my thoughts on Tambellini, because I don’t like to poke holes in peoples’ optimism.

    The only reason I really objected to your statement was your description of his summer as stellar. I didn’t see it that way.

  • Clay

    Over his first 11 games, NK was .903 SP, which isn’t great, but considering the team in front of him, not bad.

    Over his last 4 games, he’s .734 SP.

    Over the same time (the NJ game he started and the CHI and CAR games where he relieved NK), DD has a SP of .916.

    You’d think that if NK’s .734 SP over the past four was largely due to bad play in front of him, then DD’s SP would be horrible as well. Not the case.

    I’d submit that NK’s been hurt for a while.

  • I mostly happy with the forwards Tambo’s kept but not the defense. Its too bad that Souray’s attitude has kept him out of the team because I do believe he has a lot to offer young D-men. Strudwick on the other hand I don’t think does. I don’t think he ever even established himself as a NHL Defender until he came to the under performing oiler teams of the last few years. I just think there were better options available for Tambo to go after to create that vet def core to teach the young guns.

  • D-Man

    Getting rid of completely useless and terrible hockey players are replacing them with more of the same doesn’t really fit the description of a stellar summer.

  • smiliegirl15

    So Tambellini resigned JFJ, JDD and Strudwick because he couldn’t do any better than that? If that’s the case, we’d better get comfortable with the quality of those players because that’s all he’s going to be able to sign.

    Don’t you think resigning Comrie would have been better than JFJ? and although playing the heavy with Souray by sending him down to Hershey definitely sends a message, it’s starting to look more and more like cutting off your nose to spite your face. Edmonton could certainly use a good veteran defenseman of Souray’s calibre right about now.

  • smiliegirl15

    The Oilers have, by far, the worst goalie management of any team in hockey the past few years. The strategy every season seems to be “Let’s play the veteran non-stop until he wears out, then keep playing him until something breaks.” Give 15 of the first 17 starts for a 37 year old with a lengthy injury history, what could possibly go wrong?

    At least it’s good that the goalie who should have won the starting job in training camp is getting a shot to play some games and the kid that won the back-up roll will finally get a few starts.

  • @ speeds:

    I see what you’re getting at there, but my preference would be for the Oilers to start using a fourth forward on their PP, and Lord knows that the PK personnel haven’t put forward much of a case to keep those minutes.

    They’ve burnt a year on the contract now, and since winning isn’t happening they may as well find those minutes at the NHL level.

  • Ender

    smiliegirl15 wrote:

    although playing the heavy with Souray by sending him down to Hershey definitely sends a message, it’s starting to look more and more like cutting off your nose to spite your face. Edmonton could certainly use a good veteran defenseman of Souray’s calibre right about now.

    I’m not picking on SG15 in particular, but why are so many people advocating for Souray to be back on this team? Philosophical differences aside, having Souray play here right now makes no sense. What’s the argument? That he could help the Oilers win games? Really? Are you kidding? Have you seen the rest of the team? Ovechkin couldn’t help this year’s Oilers win games.

    If Souray was the difference between finishing 30th and finishing 25th (and I don’t believe that for a second), that still leaves me baffled as to how people think having him here would be a good thing.

    • Crash

      I agree with you, I can’t believe how many people believe that Souray’s sorry ass is going to improve anything.

      Isn’t this the same Souray that we had last year? Didn’t this team finish 30th last year? Souray is also another year older to boot.

      Again, the Oilers had Souray last year and finished 30th…how does having him this year change that?

      Everyone thinks Khabibulin is a guaranteed injury….you can include Souray. The guy is made of glass.

  • Ender

    It’s funny we have these complaints about having little leadership on the defensive roster.

    Think what a guy like Visnovsky could do to stabilize things… Sure, Whitney is a pretty good player, but we needed a defensive defensemen to add to our group of puck movers at that time.

    But yet, everyone was so opposed to the rumors of a Gilbert trade last year at the deadline.

    Still regretting that. Please, Tom. Do something in the next three years that leads us to believe that the Viz trade and Gilbert non-trade wasn’t Tambellini’s worst mistake as G.M.

  • Boourns99

    Great. Just Great. Weren’t we at least fighting for a playoff spot at this point last year? Good grief. Well, DD this is your chance to shine…

    So, is it too early to start the “Adam vs Sean” debate? It really doesn’t have the ring of “Taylor vs Tyler”…

  • Ender

    Well Brule and Cogs really need to do something here because they play hard and nothing is happening. If things stay this way I don’t think they will be getting new contracts. As for signing back Penner and Horcoff, maybe horcoff at a discount from his current pay but not Penner. A big that doesn’t hit or play really physical might as well be another little guy. We need someone that has size plays physical, can hit, and still puts up the offense. That and for the last while he just looks like he doesn’t even want to be playing out there.

  • Ender

    I’m a Scientist! wrote:

    Hemsky, Horcoff, Gilbert… all players that can’t grown them…are refusing to put in an effort during the games as a form of silent protest against the discriminating that is going on with Movember. How are baby faces supposed to contribute to the fundraising efforts of their hair peers? It just isn’t fair and their dismal performance on the ice is exhibiting their disgust.

    Dude, the hockey thing doesn’t even matter anymore. I just found out that today is the second-best day of the year, save only Gregor’s hallowed March 14th. I had no idea, but yes indeed I just found out that today is better than Christmas.

    I need to get off work early. This is too good to miss.

    • Dyckster

      You, the larger girl with the tattoos and white t-shirt. A 1/2 bottle of Molson Canadian, and a bowl of cheesey’s.

      The night is yours Ender, the night is yours…..

  • Wax Man Riley

    Any thoughts on maybe sending my man-crush Pääjärvi down to the AHL in exchange for Omark? It keeps PRV playing big minutes and probably winning as well as learning the NA game and it also gives Omark what he wants in a chance on this team he believes he belongs on…

    ….Too soon?

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    Agreed Vandemeer and Strudwick aren’t NHL material and at best should be playing in the AHL. Those two aren’t the role models you want your young stars to take after.

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    Well I’m a big Cogs and Brule fan but things just don’t seem to be working here for them. I think their skills would be wanted by other teams and I think both of them would do better if they went to a contending team. So no trades to Calgary or NJ.

  • OB1 Team Yakopov - F.S.T.N.F

    Didn’t Khabby get hurt about the same time last year? Maybe he just needs a drink to calm his nerves, but in his case it will be a whole lot of drinks to get his buzz.

  • smiliegirl15

    Don’t get me wrong, I don’t think having Souray would make a huge difference. My point is that his situation was entirely mismanaged. How did it get to this point in the first place? If Tambellini can trade freaking Staios, he should certainly be able to trade Souray? Don’t you think?

    Tambellini has already had a 2-3 year pass because it was Lowe’s mess. I am tired of all the excuses. Enough is enough. He assesses and assesses. There’s nothing left to assess – we suck – “the suckiest sucks who ever sucked” so now is the time for action. Calgary already realizes they need to be in rebuild mode. It took us from 2006 until now to realize we needed to. Seriously? Enough is enough. I am all for the rebuild and I am prepared to be patient with the players we have. Tambellini is the king of the suckiest sucks.

    • lowebellini

      I very much agree!!!

      The problem and question that we all need to ask ourselves is how is tambo at assessing? Looking at what he has done yes he got rid of alot of deadweight in many of the players he got rid of. Any of us could have made those decisions they were easy. Now looking at this year knowing full well that you were going to “Rebuild” and play all of your young players what has he done? based on what he has done he believes that having mac, storts and jones are going to be all that we need for a 4th line and im not debating that but i bet we could have had a more efficient 4th line knowing that 3 and 4 would be around the same as we are giving our young players the ability to learn and make mistakes. Some solid vets would have helped that out. Tambo also must have full confidence that Vandermeer and Strudwick could handle the ice he knew they were going to have to fill. Oh and it took him 2 months to figure out that JDD wasnt going to get claimed. And our 38 year old Goalie at 3.75million for 4 years?????? You tell me how good this guy is at evaluating.