STAR PICKING TIME

It is one of our favourite days here at the OilersNation. The day where we all go out on a limb and declare our Star for the upcoming season.

For the uninitiated, we started picking our favourite player and our designated whipping Goat back in 2005. We did so as a means of being able to later gloat "man, did we ever pick the best Star this year" and also be able to gleefully flay our Goat night after night, game after game without mercy or concern of "being a bad fan" during the season.

Picking your star and making him "your guy" for the year can be richly rewarding. We always think back to our buddy Lee who picked Pisani to have a breakout year back in 2006. As he tore the playoffs a new corn chute, Lee was held in equally high regard as Saint Fernando himself. With each passing goal, we would shake our heads in wonder.

Not at Pisani having an out of body experience for two months – but at our buddy who had the foresight to call it. That’s the kind of glory Star pickers can get if it is done right.

HISTORY

Generally our Star will fold under the immense pressure of living with our fanboy endorsement and we will spend the season shaking our heads at what we were thinking back in early September. It’s virtually a kiss of death.

2005-06: Chris Pronger (had great season, broke our collective hearts after)

2006-07: Ryan Smyth (traded at during the season, broke our collective hearts)

2007-08: Shawn Horcoff (lit the lamp like crazy, got hurt)

2008-09: Erik Cole (played like crap, demanded to go back to Carolina)

2009-10: Mike Comrie (led the league in preseason scoring, spent majority of the year on the shelf, signed elsewhere)

With a track record that stellar, we spent the weekend in deep, deep meditation thinking about who would be the Star for 2010. We like to go with players that aren’t the obvious choice. Picking Ales Hemsky to crack the 50 point barrier takes about as much brains as calling Lindsay Lohan to be in porno within 3 years. Likewise picking Taylor Hall to have a good start to his illustrious career is equally safe. We like to find the unsung hero, the guy who is going to exceed his potential and show us all what he is made of.

Take a read of our pick and then name your own. If you are right you will be celebrated for all eternity in the pantheon of hockey geniuses. If you are wrong, well prepare for your own personal end of days.

CELEBRATED STAR PICKS OF 2009

Last year’s Star picking generated some awesome drama. Horcoff boosters came out in droves as did many a Hemsky fan. Insults were traded and enemies made.

Here is a look at some of the better picks from last year:

Heh heh. Well played TB.

We respect this pick from bingofuel because he went out on a limb. But that is the risk part of "risk & reward."

The best Star call of the 2009-10 season clealy goes out to anyone who had the stones to pick Penner. The big man shook off a disastrous 2008-09 campaign and lit the lamp 32 times during the campaign. If you had told us this time last year that the Oilers would finish last in the league and yet no one would be mad at Penner we would have punched you squarely in your face for lying to us.

Not only did Victoria call Penner as her Star, she also called injuries on Khabibulin and named her the Goat for the year. This is basically a perfect game and the best combo of the 2009-10 season.

2010-11 STAR

Picking Jordan Eberle – a 20 year old rookie who hasn’t played a single game in the NHL – might seem like a bad idea. But on a team with more teenagers than a Justin Bieber concert, going with youth is probably the best move. We feel it is extraordinarily important that everyone understand that Jordan Eberle is going to be our boy. He’s ours dammit. Go get your own Jordan Eberle. This one is all ours!

TOMORROW

Picking the goat.

BAAA

  • cambosmash

    I think this is the year big Devan Dubnyk steps up and shows he was worth that #14 pick. He’ll let in some bad goals but cement himself into the #1 role.

    Star – Devan Dubnyk

  • Blue Blooded

    Alrighty, boys and girls, I’m ready to get in on this (lil late, pardon moi). Mark my words, you’ve heard it here first. My star prediction for this year is the one, the only: RYAN JONES! Ya, that’s right, he will have a Glencross-like year for the Oil, bringing some major peanut butter and jam to our bottom nine. Not as many goals as the “real stars” of the team, but I’m calling him to step up in a major way with some BIG goals at big times and to be a penalty-drawing machine.

    ***I’m also calling Hemsky to become Renney’s Jagr this year and have the best season to date of his career. MPS for Calder!***

  • Panda13

    Star: Souray-Tambi-Cogs (this trio will be responsible for us getting the help we need in shutdown dman to play with and mentor Smid)

    @Reijo Ruotsalainen’s wicked slapper

    Ummm…are you spiking your KoolAid? 🙂

    6 goals in 15 games works out to 0.4 goals per game, and would be approximately 32 goals over the course of an 82 game schedule.

    @Sheldon Oilers Fan for Life!!!

    If Big Mac can average 3 goals over 10 games and not be a liability in his limited 4th line ice time he would be a 20+ goal man. Somehow I just don’t see that happening, more likely he ends up with 2 goals over 15 or so games and averages close to a 10 fights over the same 15 games.

  • I'm a Scientist!

    I just can’t resist picking Stortini as my star. It is not so much the soft hands and scoring prowess that makes me want to choose him, but the intangibles that he brings to the game. I predict a Dustin Byfuglien sort of season, and that my friends makes him my star.

    Star Runner Up: Cogliano who will make a Penner like transformation once he joins a line that is offensively minded (of which there shall be three).

    It is written.

  • Spydyr

    Star : MPS he will be the top rookie on this team

    Goat : Horcoff, one year older does not make him any faster or improve that awesome one timer.You know the one where Hempsky’s beautiful passes go to die.

  • Bucknuck

    My Star will be Horcoff. He will make everyone remember why Lowe signed him to that ridiculous contract with a career year netting 74+ points and having a 55% faceoff percentage. Look out world here comes Scorecoff.

  • book¡e

    Star – Horcoff (though Hemsky and Cogs – yes Cogs – will also shine)

    Goat – Wanye and Eberle – not really a true goat, but a guy whose year does not live up to the hype – some of it could be in the AHL.

  • GrillBoss

    Penner gets my vote for star. He has lost weight (what, no more wheat based beverages?) and that takes motivation and discipline. I expect he will put up even better numbers than last season as a result.

  • MountainManMatt

    Ales Hemsky – Is healthy, has something to prove after hearing his name bounced around in trade rumours all off season and he finally has skilled players to play with.

  • MountainManMatt

    Kurtis Foster. He is flying under the radar somewhat right now but I think he will surprise a lot of Oiler fans this year. He has a hard shot but more importantly his shot is very accurate. I think he will only trail Tom Gilbert in pts by a d-man at the end of the season.

  • Jofa

    Lots of great options for stars this season, but if they hope to have any success, they’ll need a goalie to step up and provide consistent netminding. When (not if) Khabi goes down, I’ll pick Gerber as my star to put in a Roloson-like effort to elevate this team into an 8th place contender.

    But really, the real star this season is going to be the three-headed rookie monster Ebhallarvi. Can’t wait – this season should be a treat…