Some decisions in life are funny and some are not. This dude reacting to the news he is not the father in a Maury paternity test is funny. Jordan Eberle being the next Captain is no laughing matter. So you can watch the video above and have a good laugh or make the jump and have a good think. We are on the verge of a 10 year NHL strike – its every man for himself at this point.

Disagreeing with Robin Brownlee can be hazardous to one’s health. And he recently wrote a great article about Horcoff ultimately handing off the C to one of the youths:

I understand the sentiment – and there has been plenty of it in these parts in recent days – that Horcoff, facing a diminished role as his career winds down, could get out in front of the inevitable transition that will see youngsters like Hall, Jordan Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins take over as the on-ice leaders of the team. That swing is already underway.

We are fully on board with his line of thinking that the time isn’t now for Horcoff to hand over the C. Most hockey pundits agree that the Oil probably have another year on the outside looking in of the playoffs (wrong) and if this is the case (it isn’t) then waiting until the Oil have officially returned to respectability before handing over the reins is probably good for all involved.

It’s hard to be the Captain of a losing team – particularly if you are a) mega young by NHL standards and b) in the first year of the job. Any player assuming the role – and with a large long contract on the books – need look no further than the C13 for the type of lightning rod you can easily become if you aren’t living up to expectations.


Remember the quest for the C13? Oh those were fun times. Back in the day we all used to amuse ourselves with the quest for the thirteenth Captain of the Oilers. Ethan Moreau had just left town (Thank the Gods) and the Oil were left looking within the dressing room for someone to lead the squad.

In those days heady days of 2010, we were all up in arms about whether or not the Oil needed to build through free agents and trades or blow it all up and start again. It seems like centuries ago but fans were split between going with an experienced Captain or going with youth.

Youth in those days consisted of Ales Hemsky, Jeff Deslauriers and Patrick O’Sullivan who expertly stickhandled his way through Edmonton on his road to nowhere. Experience consisted of Ales Kotalik, Dr. Randy Gregg and other players who shouldn’t be considered in a trade much less being made Captain of an NHL team. 

In the end it was all a bunch of hullabaloo about nothing as is so often the case in the world of full contact hockey blogging.

The Captaincy went to Shawn Horcoff over Hemsky and an assortment of "not reallys" from failed miracle trades. This was the best move at the time.

Case closed.


Things couldn’t be any more different now if you decided to spin a random wheel of chance and began cheering for a completely new team. Appeasing Ales Hemsky is no longer a reason to hand out letters left and right and the option of "going with experience" for a new Captain is completely "laughable." 

The C14 as anyone with a functioning set of eyes and brain stem knows is going to someone with a hazy recollection of cassette tapes and someone who has no idea what a Sega Master System was. The C14 is going to youth.

The key point here to make is that when the time does finally arrive for the C14 to be named – it needs to be Jordan Eberle receiving the C not teammate Taylor Hall.* Sure we are about as biased as Honey Boo Boo’s mom being named judge at a Honey Boo Boo pagent but this is for a very good reason.

Maturity, composure and clutch-ness are a key component for the next Captain of the Edmonton Oilers. C14 will have a very young room to lead, headstrong superstars all looking waaaaay down the road to their 25th birthdays. Things could go sideways quickly if the wrong person is put in charge of the room.

We will take a look at the different candidates for the next Captain of the Oilers in the next little while as we all scratch our heads for topics of debate. But it’s Jordan Eberle so there.

Shoot man it’s C14. Of course it will go to Jordan Eberle.



In one of the old C13 articles we stumbled upon ourselves saying this:

A Jason Strudwick type player might just be what this team needs to elect as C13 until they can figure out the long term player to fill this role. Not the greatest player in the NHLPA, a Strudwick type player could still command the room with his grizzled veteran presence and allow the next generation of players (including the future C14) to develop free of the pressure of being the Captain of a losing NHL hockey team.

Now turns out Strudwick runs the sports media in Edmonton. Classic.

*Or maybe the Nuge. He is so cute.

  • I love Ebs and have no doubt he will make a great assistant, but I would wager a months salary that Hall gets the C.

    Hall was a 1st round draft pick.
    Hall is more vocal.
    Hall was chosen to represent the Oilers with Schultz.
    Hall was signed first.
    Hall was signed to a longer term contract.
    Hall has been considered the face of the franchise since being drafted.

    They will make a great team.

    • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

      Yup, I think if a new Captain were to be named today #4 would be wearing the “C.” Pretty sure that next year will be the day or reckoning, certainly possible things can change but if I’m the Oil I’m darned careful not to upset the obvious on/off chemistry between them. The problem going forward just may well be that the club has an abundance of candidates. . .

      Aside to Chris ‘on the clock:’

      You’ve succeeded in riling Mr. Brownlee’s feathers. Not entirely sure what it means exactly but I’ll guess it’s worse than being under it.

  • Freelantz

    Hall is the prototypical captain. As it is said, let it be done.
    Also, wanye, thanks for the stickers and the sweet drawing. It’s hanging on my fridge, next to a naked lady. Feel pride.

  • Reading the C13 article about Horcoff reminded me how smart every thinks they are in hindsight.

    I’m sure everyone here will say they were 100% opposed to the Horcoff contract the minute it was signed, but I doubt its even remotely true. I recall my group of friends all thinking it was a great day in Oilers history.

    Read this: http://oilersnation.com/2008/7/16/horcoff-signs-extension

    Especially read the comments, where each and every comment (including Brownlee) is quite happy with Horcoffs massive contract.

    Anyways, point is, I think Mr Dithers and crew are probably doing the right thing by taking this all slow. I hope those Hall/Ebs contracts don’t come back to bite us one day. No rush on the captaincy.

    • “Especially read the comments, where each and every comment (including Brownlee) is quite happy with Horcoffs massive contract.

      Anyways, point is, I think Mr Dithers and crew are probably doing the right thing by taking this all slow. I hope those Hall/Ebs contracts don’t come back to bite us one day. No rush on the captaincy.”

      Is that so? Is that right?

      You link to the article, so this should be easy: cut and paste the comments where I offer any opinion — positive or negative — about Horcoff’s contract.

      You’re on the clock.

  • Jordan McNugent-Hallkins

    “Youth in those days consisted of Ales Hemsky, Jeff Deslauriers and Patrick O’Sullivan who expertly stickhandled his way through Edmonton on his road to nowhere.”

    Funniest thing I’ve read in a week

  • #94 sized hole where my heart used to be...

    On Wanye’s comment: “Most hockey pundits agree that the Oil probably have another year on the outside looking in of the playoffs (wrong) and if this is the case (it isn’t)…”

    Wanye is correct, it may be more than another year before the Oil make the playoffs, there are too many holes in the lineup. The Western Conference is tough and the Oilers’ travel requirements make it even more so.

    Diehard and his claim “Playoffs are guaranteed THIS YEAR.” Obviously, he believes there will be a season that will result in playoffs and, even if there is, there is no guarantee it will include the Oilers. The team is still missing balance and soft to play against. About the only guarantee is Columbus will be worse.

    Sorry to be so negative, but I feel the season is about to slip slide away again for quite some time.

  • GiftedGregerius

    I was watching the summit series, classic hockey, last night and I really took a look at Mark Messier, arguably the best captain ever. The thing I noticed the most was his willingness to do ANYTHING to win: throwing vicious elbows, slashing Russians in the face, running goalies, scoring timely goals, etc. I think that this is what the Oilers need to be looking for in C14, a guy who will do whatever it takes to win. I see this guy as Taylor Hall, and not Jordan Eberle. He throws all of himself into everygame, and while not as ‘cool as cucomber’ he certainly gets his enthusiasm and passion for the game accross to his fellow players and to fans.

    Now that being said, we haven’t seen any of these kids in situations where games actually matter (at the NHL level anyway), so it is hard to say that Eberle will not do the same when the chips are down. Looking forward to playoff hockey so this dispute can be settled properly.

  • I realize that the locker room has Horc’s back and everything, but how much more respect would it earn him on the team and throughout the city if he were to hand the C to Smytty? He’s got 2-3 years left I’d say, then it’s the new generation’s turn to take the reigns.

    • There was a time Smyth would have been a great captain and it is a shame that he wasn’t.

      I think it would be a very small group who would want Smyth as captain now. If the C comes off of Horcoff’s jersey it goes directly to Hall. Anywhere else would be a slap in his face. This is not Smyth’s team anymore. He can still be a presence in the dressing room and can still model the effort required to be a pro, but it will never be with a C. Most likely Eberle gets an A when Hall gets the C. That leaves one A and a number of good candidates for it.

      Horcoff, Hemsky, Smyth, Whitney, Smid, N Schultz(if he wans to be here long term)

  • I hope those are theraputic medicinal brownies,because provided you are unfortunate enough to posess a medical exemption they sure look good.Very,Verrrrry good.

    Great read,this seems to be a hot topic these days.

    I think we better give Sammy the letter and end the speculation because if we dont he will forcefully make us go from being tightends to being wide-recievers at contract time after he slams 70 plus points down on the table and leads this team again.

    I think we are about to see the breakout year we have all assumed had already came and gone,and when this year is obver shortened or not,Gagner will be sitting at the top of the heap looking Ebbs right in the eye with Nuge right there by his side,Hall will be a big time shooter this year,so his totals will change—more goals and even less assists.

    I see Ebbs,Gagner,Nuge and Hall as our top four in that order points wise.

    Just a guess,and by the way who wants a captain that doesnt fight??We need the total package,and no Messier wasnt a better choice than Wayne or a few other because he was a wild-card emotionally,and that was a planned dynamic,he was needed that way.Just like we need Hall to be that type of player,Hall cant let the C slow him down at all and this early on in his career it would do just that,remember on some teams depending on depth a young star might be bribed to stay long term with a letter,not on this Oilers squad,you need to earn it here,and brother are you in deep in that locker room.Ebbs scoreing is to critical to allow him to fight or get his nose to dirty and we want him out of the line of fire ,he is a potentially perennial Lady Byng candidate,we dont want him having to deal with a lot of refs,we can have Sammy do that he is our most experienced young gun and has earned a reputation as a stand up guy around the NHL ,it is already done, and he is still a young gun by any definition.

    I hate to wade into the room this way,and I am not even sure if Sam is ready this year,but I sure dont see anyone else threatening him in that race that isnt a Veteran,Smid believe it or not jumps to mind.I would give that beast my back any day,tough as Nails and bleeds Oilers colors.But I also trust Horcoff to make the right professional decision,and really I never liked being a captain anyways ,its to hard to fly under the radar,totally.Take it if you have to but make sure you ‘sell” a teammate into the position if possible.ha ha ha.

    Some of these guys might not want the honor,for their own reasons of which there could be many,some tactical in nature.

    I bet Gagner is asked sooner or later though,especially after takeing one for the team this year so the Oilers could sign some core guys without concerns.Big risk by the Oilers because I have Sam pegged for a career year even amongst this group Sam Gagner still stands out as a more mature,complete, committed professional ,his point totals have reflected his desire to become a complete player as he has evolved,they have no bearing on pure potential,which I feel we will be seeing this year.

    No one could replicate Messiers style because you would be banned from the NHL in your first year,Mess was a surgeon with that stick,he was a deviant,and I mean a historical deviant just like those elbows man.I agree he is a hall of Famer,but his first few years when he literally carved out his reputation would bury him today,yes he calmed down after players gave him room recognising his nutty streak.
    Messier played his career perfectly,he established himself as physical in a painful manner then he worked on his offense once he had a wee bit more room out there.I think Wayne handpicked Mark for his ability to listen and just git er done,once Wayne got over his fear of the guy and talked to him and realised he would do anything to win including listen immediatly,then the historic tandem was cemented into history forever.

    Messier grew into the ability to be a Captain,as Hall will,but not yet,many many wars to go for that to happen,no one saw Mess and after one or two years railed to give him a letter and he is a Hall of Famer.You need to earn it.Usually teammates all know who their leaders are,its not really rocket science you know,the room already knows ,its just us mushrooms sitting here inthe dark.