A Whole Lotta Rosie!

The Oilers could have used a whole lotta Rosie, that is Michael Rozsival. The thirty four year old defencemen finally signed, inking a deal with the Chicago Blackhawks. Reportedly the deal is for one year at two million dollars. Good deal for the Hawks and the Oilers lost out.

Added Depth

Rozsival is a steady defencemen. His offensive output isn’t incredible yet he moves the puck well. Making a good first pass to the talented top six is a priority for the Oilers d-men and Rozsival is very good at it. While playing with the New York Rangers, Rozsival was on the ice a lot with Jaromir Jagr. Nobody wants the puck like Jagr, Rozsival understood that and got him the puck. The same plan should be put together for Hall, Eberle and company.

Not known for being super physical, Rozsival is a decent penalty killer and can work the point on the power play. His right-handed shot would have been a nice addition to a group that has only two righties currently in the unit.

His ice time per game was all over the place last season with Phoenix. He topped out at over twenty eight minutes one night. Not too shabby! I am not suggesting that he would have come in here and be the savior on the blueline, but it would have been nice to add him in case that type of effort was required at some point in the season.

The Oilers Blue

It is clear the Oilers top five will be Whitney, Smid, Petry, J. Schultz and N. Schultz. If they stay healthy and they all perform up to their abilities this is a pretty solid unit. If there are injury issues, as the team has had over the last few years, I believe the group will suffer due to the lack of puck-moving depth on the blue line.

Lets say both Whitney and Smid get knocked out of action for four weeks at the same time. They are both guys who will be playing north of twenty minutes this winter. Who takes their spots?

I think bringing Justin Schultz along slowly is the smart thing to do. Rushing into twenty minute plus playing time would be a mistake. Let him get comfortable at the fifteen minute level for an extended period of time. Some nights he will go higher due to a lot of power play time, but I wouldn’t want to press him into twenty minutes all year.

If the team decides to be cautious with Justin that leaves three other Defencemen to pick up the extra minutes when injuries occur in the top four. Andy Sutton, Theo Peckham and Corey Potter. HHHMMM? Capable players in the role of a five or six dman but can the Oilers be successful with them playing in the top four for a prolonged amount of time? I don’t want to find out.

Rozsival would have been a perfect fit to slide in and eat up extra minutes when required. When everyone is healthy you can put him in the press box and let the bruisers get in there and bang away.

A team can never have too much top four depth or top four fillers. This issue needs to be addressed because once the season does start it will be to late. Players like Rozsival are not given up easily. 

      • yawto

        Because I think RB is being polite and someone drove me nuts the other day at work allow me to further what he was trying to say less politely.

        Too Bad about what is right. If you what you are implying, and it appears to be, is that Jason Strudwick is copying another writer for material is ignorant and uncalled for. I haven’t read JW’s article, although I expect knowing him it is about the numbers the dollars and the perfect fit for the team, this is nothing the same.

        JW is a numbers freak. Love his work, but his connection to hockey is through numbers. Jason Strudwick is an NHL veteran that has experience playing with the player mentioned in the article. As much as JW disects it about numbers, this is the account of an NHL veteran on what he saw in his countless games in the NHL.

        The only sad thing for Struds in this situation is when he used to work a comment like that would mean a dance ticket at center ice next time you meet. Now he has to just listen to trolls who talk crap over a computer when he takes his time to share experience and knowledge about the game and team we love.

        Too bad you don’t respect how good we have it as Oilers fans and the level of coverage we get on our team from these people and their extensive knowledge and connections to the team.

        Thanks for the article Struds. Thanks for being part of the team. Decided to drop the gloves to make up for all the times you’ve done it for others.

        And because these interwebs confuse me, that is a reply to humphries not you RB 🙂

        • JT_OIL

          Yes,there is definately a statistical perspective and a dynamic perspective present in our great sport,and just as in all other major sports stats are being used to drive up salaries and fleece fans for more and more dollars.

          A player who works for 5 million a year then works for 2 million a year??This is impossible,unless there is a story to be found.
          You come to my house and fix my plumbing and charge me 1000$ this year and come back next year and charge me 450$ I am going to ask you why there is a difference and why you ripped me off the first time,I am not going to be happy I “got a deal”this year!!!!Something is fishy in Denmark??There is a story here and I already posted it on a different forum where it was 86ed quickly.Must have been my spelling ,grammer,and lengthy post.

          Statistics can be used to manipulate many things in pro sports if they are used outside of an NHL teams internal development and performance evaluations as per the system and coaching they are using.
          We are facing a dynamic where player values as accepted by the teams and players and the NHL are determined through the use of league wide comparative statistical analysis.
          This means we are valuing players based on statistics from the past gained in a specific system –then we guess on the “potential”this player has to take this statistical sucess into another system coached differently and we base his current and future value on that “potential statistical number performance”

          Another option is to value players dollar wise on what they provide for their team and its system based on team sucess in the NHL during the regular season and during the playoffs .Set a base salary for all players and allow teams to give bonuses above and beyond that salary where they see fit IF they make the playoffs and generate that extra income,otherwise the fans must pay this money .
          What kind of system makes the consumer pay for talent differences between workers,do i pay more to get my sink fixed because the Plumber used to work for Katz???Or am I paying the guy to just fix my sink???

          Do I pay more for heatly because he scored 40 goals for another team two years ago??A goal is a goal and work is work,and unless you really believe Heatly himself is sooo good that he defies system and team dynamics,you might be paying for something you never see materialise.If you are risking your own dollars on that “potential”fine .but if they are fan dollars ,its not so fine.You are really trying to tie real time value to potential dynamic sucess realised through stats.
          By valuing them based on their “potential”to take those numbers to another system of play and manifest them sucessfully.we are in effect granting players an adhoc line of credit until they can pay us back with similar statistics in a new system on a new team,and if this doesnt happen —exactly who eats this loss–who is the insurance company that absorbs this loss??The fans are thats who.
          Who ate the loss of value on Rosies salary differences??We all did I think.the NHL,NHL teams and Rosie himself are teflon here it seems.But where did the millions of dollars of value go??Somewhere.

          I am not sure where that “potential”value dollarwise goes,and maybe I am totally off base here but it sure “feels”like something is wrong here and it sure seems like statistics and their manipulation are the root cause of that “feeling”it seems to me that there is a three-way co-operative effort to mask the true dollar value of individual players dynamic contributions teamwise by using leaguewide stats comparisons from different systems in a comparative analysis to actually realise an agreed upon artificially inflated dollar value .There seems to be an peripheral effort by all three stakeholders the NHL.Owners,and Players– to support this stats based “line of credit”that players are given when their dollar value league wide is considered.

          I was in a union and wage parity was a core value,how is it possible that the NHL doesnt have this in place??Because this solves the entire issue the NHL is facing.
          The major difference i see is that we werent paid for “piece work”as individuals above and beyond the wages we all agreed upon with the employer.

          The NHL,NHLteams,and NHL players could easily restructure the valuation of players and their resulting salaries,and base the salaries off of team performance league wide by recognising the regular season as a benchmark for a salary base for all players,then allow teams to use money generated through playoff games any way they choose salary wise for players.
          But this would mean that statistics would be locked into being used only by specific teams to asses their players internally,Basiclly 30 goals for the team you play on doesnt get represented as anything special for the player leaguewide ,the 30 goals are just recognised in context of the effect they have for team he plays on and the system he plays in,the value of the goal is no higher than the value of a nail the carpenter drives into a piece of wood.Unless you are paying him for piece work and he can charge you for each nail.

          There is no way I can see this dynamic evolving without complicity at all levels to some degree with the NHL,Team owners,and NHL players all playing a stakeholders part in the process.What about the fans,I thought there were 4 stakeholders here,the NHL,the NHL team Owners,the NHL players–and the fans??

          An interesting dynamic is the attempt to unionise farm team players,thereby setting what??a new method of player valuations ?/Possibly one that can save the NHL from itself by seeking change and not paying anyone for “piece work”and structuring this into a working model better than the NHLs current effort??or is it an attempt to maintain the status quo and repeat what the current NHL dynamic is??MMmmm I think someone is on to something here concerning player valuations at a statistical level as agreed upon and accepted by the current stakeholders in professional hockey,well 3 of the stakeholders at the pro level –the fans dont seem to have a voice.
          It is not impossible to find middleground between a Statisticlly-based perspective and a Dynamiclly-based perspective,it just takes a good mediator to illuminate the situational dynamics at play by using statistical data to define and value dynamic contributions by individual players.Within only their current system and coaching, and to use that data internally in an organisational context to chart player development and system suitability hence dollar value to the team and system.On an evolving realtime basis.

          Once each team has valued every individual players dynamic contribution to the teams system using these stats internally, then they can begin to allot their salary cap based on a realistic set of values being attatched to each player.This eliminates the effect of artificial league wide inflation of players salaries due to statistical misrepresentation.This effectively removes the dynamic fiscal and operational effect that marketplace catalysed statisticlly inflated player values and their contractual pressure exert fiscally on NHL team owners.I believe this leaguewide parity can only be realised by a mediation of these two perspectives,which requires that they both be defined and accorded equal value and respect.The statistical perspective is required to internally gain an accurate and true and realtime perspective of the dynamic potential and the current performance of your system of play which is really what defines your team.We need both perspectives to be analysed and then superimposed over each other so we can see the big picture clearly and accurately.

          For these reasons even in a reevaluated context I wouldnt touch Rosie for more than what Laddy makes.The only way Rosie or Suter for that matter should be able to command more than Laddy is if they can produce here systemwise and contribute to a great enough level internally to earn what the teams salary cap can give to that degree and amount of dynamic contribution,zero dollars based on an imaginary credit-line.If this internal fiscal cap management remains connected to realtime dynamic contributions by individual players to the system as opposed to inflated stats supported league valuations we will never see an out of balance contract on our team again,and no one will easily earn 5 million a year without contributing real true value within cap limits to get it.

          Just sayin.

    • You know, if we jaw enough at the excellent selection of contributers here at ON, they might just take their ball and go home. No more articles because of having to listen to this crap.

      Don’t wreck it for the rest of us.

  • Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!

    Bringing in Rozsival would push one of Sutton, Peckham, or Potter out. They’re all brand new contracts.

    Whoever it is would end up looking like a decision Tabmellini went back on. He’s shown us in the past that’s not in his nature.

  • The Real Scuba Steve

    I thought Tambo wasn’t finish? Is that all? Yaks and Schultz? It’s great adding those two but the Oil still need holes to fill I guess we miss the playoffs again.

  • Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!

    This season now looks to be gone as lockout will insue , and players will not make same mistake again and get rid of Fehr and company . Season maybe 2014 or perhaps a new World league will form around the KHL , and delete poor franchises that plague the players and league now . We’ll probably need a new arena no matter what league we may end up in . The markets here , we just need a league to play in . Khl is now the worlds best league as Nhl will not be in business . Owners greed destroying their own product .

  • RexLibris

    I wonder if adding Roszival doesn’t just muddy the waters at the lower end of the defensive rotation. He would almost certainly be an upgrade for perhaps one or two players, but given that this is likely to be Sutton and Potter’s last years with the team I don’t know that Tambellini would want to add another body.

    Any icetime that Roszival got this year the Oilers would almost certainly be wanting to be taken by Klefbom next season. Perhaps ideally the Oilers could find someone like Roszival next season to help insulate players like Klefbom and Schultz following the departure of some other bodies on the defence.

  • admiralmark

    Key Point: Injuries “always” happen.

    Once again Tambellini leaves no wiggle room for inevitable injuries that test the depth of the team.

    Conclusion in the past: Purposely tanking while not looking like purposely tanking.

    Conclusion now: Purposely tanking.. while looking like he’s purposely tanking.

    “Edit” inevitable shortened season will lesson the effect of lacking depth on D.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Wouldn’t he have been just another 3 thru 7 guy? We appear to have plenty of these guys already in Smid,Schultz,Sutton,Potter,Peckham and Fedun etc. Another unnecessary move in my opinion, the Oilers obviously felt the same if the asking price was only 2 per.

    We’re stuck in hurry up and wait mode for the next season. Waiting for Klefbom and hoping Petry rounds into a top pairing guy.

    Congrats on the new show Jason, sounds like you’re having fun and a natural.

  • It is pretty surprising that a very solid, respected veteran D man who was paid over $5 mil the previous year signed a one yer $2 million deal. Perhaps with the lockout looming and a rollback of some kind almost certain he was afraid no team would have been able to afford him because of a lower Cap whenever a deal is reached.
    Obviously this would have been a great signing for virtually any club. Were the Oilers unaware Rosie was available at this price? Had they talked to him earlier and had he been demanding much more?
    This deal is EXACTLY what the Oilers need to have good chance of making the playoffs this season, if there is a season. Missing it doesn’t matter much in the long term but is a killer shirt term.
    Maybe there is another veteran D man out there we can scoop up cheap before midnight tomorrow.

  • paul wodehouse

    …eeegawds Professor…he’s allowed to publish elsewhere y’know… you were waving your hands from your thumbs out your ears and sticking your tongue out at the same time when you wrote that JW blast i bet…now answer Robin like a good Professor…

    edit plagiarism wasn’t my take at all

  • Alas, word is that Professor Humphries is now unavailable for comment due to a regrettably short altercation at a local Edmonton radio station. Reports have confirmed that he has been admitted to hospital after suffering mysterious Strudwickian knuckle-shaped imprints on his cranium.

  • Nice column, Struds.

    However, if you don’t mind, I’d like to use this forum as a soapbox to voice a complaint (or a request) to the writers on Oilers Nation.

    How come none of you have written anything about the 25th anniversary of Canada Cup 1987? For the past week and a half, all we’ve seen in the Globe and Mail and other media is 40th anniversary stuff on the 1972 Summit Series – basically the same recycled stories we’ve been reading for the last 30 years.

    For those of us born after 1968 and have no memory of the Summit Series, Canada Cup ’87 was the most monumental hockey we’d ever seen played. I still haven’t seen anything that topped that final.

    And it was a series that was of extreme relevance to Oiler fans. Team Canada’s Oiler influences were on full display – in fact, September 1987 probably represented its zenith. Paul Coffey would never play another game as an Oiler but throughout the tournament, he was still called one.

    You all are great writers and observers of the game. I hope letting Canada Cup ’87 slide without a bit of a look back was an oversight.

      • JT_OIL

        LOL – fair enough!

        But there are other writers on here who are, ahem, of the appropriate vintage.

        Plus, as I noted earlier, Canada Cup ’87 (and Canada Cup ’84, for that matter) are interesting “historical studies” in how much influence the Oilers had on the NHL and on hockey, in general, back then. If you’re someone who likes to examine Oiler history, you’re missing out if you skip over the Canada Cups.

        Glen Sather was a HUGE influence on those tournaments because so many of his players were central figures on those teams. And, in ’84, you had the Oilers/Islanders factions in the dressing room. Three years later, it was Oilers/Flyers.

        Canada Cup ’87 was a time when the Oilers were at their absolute peak of influence. The Oilers didn’t just win Stanley Cups in the 1980s. In many ways, directly and indirectly, the hockey world ran through Edmonton – as it did through Montreal in the 1970s.

  • I wanted us to sign Roszival. You can never have too many puck movers if you ask me. Right now, we are relying too much on a rookie and Whitney staying healthy. Best case scenario, this D MIGHT be good enough to put us in the playoff hunt. An injury or two though and things could get ugly really fast.

  • JT_OIL

    Sorry, I do also think that adding Roszival would have been a good addition. But does anyone know for sure that Oil didn’t approach his agent about a contract and Roszival is choosing to go a more ‘defined’ playoff team?