So let’s get this straight. The Boston Bruins are considering sending Tyler Seguin to the World Juniors in an attempt to get him more playing time and further his development.
The Oilers on the other hand are refusing to send Magnus Paajarvi Svensson to the same tournament, to rack up minutes against players his own age and restore his confidence because …. why exactly?
We found this to be such a confusing concept that we did actual research this afternoon, reading articles, taking notes, using Microsoft Excel. It has been exhausting.
FIST THE PLAYERS
In this corner we have Tyler Seguin, number two in the 2010 Entry Draft. Young Tyler has had some dandy goals so far in his inaugural campaign and is putting up reasonably good numbers overall.
In the Blue and Copper trunks, we have Magnus – the 10th overall pick back in 2009. Young MPS netted a sick hat trick in preseason play and has shown flashes of brilliance early on in the season. He has also had stretches of being "visibility challenged" and some pundits have called for him to go to the AHL for a spell to gain back his confidence.
The stats above show that Paajarvi and Seguin are having reasonably similar seasons. Similar shot totals, similar point totals and Seguin leads the goal scoring race between the two by a count of 4-2.
Both players have shown flashes of brilliance and have also shown that they are teenagers playing against men. Says ESPN:
"The hope was that Seguin would be a key cog for the Bruins by Dec. 15, when camp starts. While the No. 2 pick in the 2010 draft has shown moments of offensive brilliance, he has struggled with coach Claude Julien’s defensive system and his playing time has been inconsistent as a result. Julien has openly said that at times he isn’t comfortable matching Seguin up with opponents’ top lines."
And then there is Tom Renney describing MPS this season:
“(He is) in the front-end of a very young career. He’s a good player. I think everybody in the game realizes he’s going to be a great player in our league. As a coach, you have to understand the mechanics of when, where and how with young players. We’re going to be prudent with Maggie. When he gets the handle on things, he’ll get more (ice time). When he doesn’t, we’re going to pull back. Penalty-killing? He’s got the quickness and a good stick and understands what’s in front of him, but we haven’t exposed him to that yet, to where it’s instinctive for him.”
When you look at the ice time being doled out to these two players, they are also being given remarkably similar amounts of ice time. Sure Seguin is on an infinitely better team in Boston than MPS here in E-Town but overall these two are having very similar seasons.
So why wouldn’t the Oilers send Paajarvi-Svensson to the tournament you ask? If there is talk about sending the kid down to the AHL for confidence building, certainly the World Juniors could have the same effect while allowing him to save some face at the same time.
Let’s see what our esteemed GM had do say on the matter. After all, he would want to clarify the Oilers position on something this important and communicate to the fans in a transparent manner right?
“I keep getting calls from them, asking about Paajarvi, but he’s not going,” said Edmonton Oilers general manager Steve Tambellini.
Thanks for clearing that up.
The big difference between the Oilers and the Bruins is – of course – their overall play and positioning in their respective conferences. The Bruins are in the thick of what will become a tight race in the East, currently sitting in 8th place – 3 points ahead of the Hurricanes. Even with a playoff battle looming large, "the Bruins are still open to considering sending their new stud to the World Juniors and achieve a lifelong dream after being skipped over for last year’s World Juniors."
The Oilers on the other hand, are currently tied for 29th in the league – 3 points ahead of the lowly New York Islanders. The best thing they could do this season is finish dead last while allowing all of their newly acquired talent to develop. Letting MPS go dominate the World Juniors fits both of these objectives to a tee – and yet the Oilers refuse to send him over and helpfully keep quiet as to their motivations.
What exactly are the Oilers doing that is so important they can’t spare MPS at the moment? Trying to finish last and see all players develop to their maximum potential? Uh – what?
CONSPIRACY THEORIES BEGIN NOW
There are a variety of reasons why this is happening. In rapid fire – conspiracy theory form here they are:
- Bruins need cap room. The Bruins are nearing the ceiling and could use some breathing room salary wise. While Seguin is at the tournament, the Bruins aren’t responsible for his salary.
- Oilers don’t want to help Sweden. Maybe the Oil are playing patriot and want to see Olivier Roy and the Canadian team win at all costs. Having an MPS in the lineup would be of certain help to Team Sweden and the Oilers are attempting the block for the win.
- Oilers are mean. Maybe the Oilers are just plain mean and don’t care about Paajarvi. One time at an Oilers game we were denied entrance because we "didn’t have any pants on Sir." See what we mean? Mean.
- Bruins are nice. The Bruins are considering letting Seguin go to the tournament and "achieve a life long dream." They also have a cuddly bear on their third Jersey. Perhaps the Bean Town Squad is just a kinder beast.
- MPS doesn’t need more confidence. The kid is currently on pace for 7-14-21. Perhaps that is what the Oilers consider to be optimal output from a 10th pick overall. Maybe this is all they think they can get out of him.
Props to Rod Phillips, calling one of the games in his farewell tour in Montreal. The Oilers will not be the same without you in the middle of the action Sir.
Classic video from the Bachman Turner sound check. If you don’t like watching a guy dance, fast forward to about 1:15 when he takes a massive spill.
Magnus’ Top Photo Credit: Ender once again. The guy is like Souljaboy – he only makes hit records.