I haven’t seen enough of Colten Teubert to know exactly where he’s slotted on the Edmonton Oilers organizational depth chart, but I most certainly do know I like the kick-some-ass-ask-questions-later instincts he’s been showing down on the farm with the Oklahoma City Barons.

Before going on, full disclosure: I’m a sucker for players who show the brass it takes to stick up for teammates with no questions asked and I put more weight in that quality than some people do. I like the jam it takes to play that way, just as some observers have an elevated appreciation for, say, the more cerebral and passive game others play – Tom Gilbert comes to mind.

Teubert, 22, has ridden to the rescue a couple of times in recent games, the latest example coming in OKC’s 4-2 win over the Texas Stars Sunday when he doffed the gloves after Jordan Eberle took a knee. Teubert did likewise in reaction to a late hit on Justin Schultz the game before. It’s just a part of Teubert’s make-up.

Some guys have it. Others don’t. It’s tough to teach. That nasty edge will be, it must be, given Teubert’s limitations in other areas and the make-up of the Oilers core group of players in the next several seasons, his ticket to the NHL sometime down the road, as Lowetide so deftly put in his post today. It’s a degree of nastiness that’s going to come in handy.


"Teuby did a good job after that," OKC coach Todd Nelson told reporters after the game when asked about the knee thrown at Eberle. "That’s fine with me. It’s absolutely fine. Teuby did a great job both nights. It’s good to see our guys stick up for each other."

Edmonton Sun columnist Terry Jones followed up by asking Nelson for a report on Teubert’s play and progress this season, to which he said: "I think he’s been pretty consistent this season. His play away from the puck has been, you know, very good.

"As long as he just keeps it simple out there, he’s going to have a lot of success. I like the way that he’s playing physical. I like the way he’s defending. He’s playing a good shutdown role and that’s what we need him to do."

Teubert looked like he was in over his head much of the time in the 24 games he was pressed into with the Oilers last season, and that’s because he was. No surprise whatsoever in that. Teubert has a lot of work to do and adjustments to make, but the element he possesses is something the Oilers are going to need, especially if knee surgery puts an end to the career of big Andy Sutton.

With Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall and (maybe) rookie Nail Yakupov forming the core of the forward mix for the next decade, the Oilers are going to need functional toughness – a bad-ass who take a regular shift and take care of business without a written invitation. That’s Teubert’s opening right there, although Theo Peckham will get the first crack at the gig, and should.

Teubert’s willingness to fill that job description as a third-pairing defenseman or a guy coming out of the press box when needed by itself won’t land him a regular NHL job, even with Edmonton’s lack of size and grit up front, but it’s a start. You either have it or you don’t.


Nelson had Teemu Hartikainen penciled in with Nugent-Hopkins and Eberle against Texas, but it doesn’t take a vast intellect to deduce that could and likely will change when Hall arrives back in OKC after being cleared to play.

My best guess is Hall will get some time to find his game legs because he won’t have them yet, despite his stint with the Barons. Once Hall gets up to speed, he’ll bump Harski and Magnus Paajarvi down a notch on the left side.


. . . There is a context and perspective that comes with age and experience and that’s why I find myself smiling at times when I read Lowetide. I like how he turns a phrase (and insists on running pix of hot dames, many of whom are old enough to the grandmothers of our readers now).

So it went with his choice of TINKER, TAYLOR, SOLDIER, SAILOR for his item Saturday. I love a catchy rhyme. Remember HICKORY, DICKORY, DOCK . . ? Never mind.

Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.

  • I’m very interested to see how Theo Peckham comes out of the gate. I saw him a couple of times this summer. He’s lookin’ pretty bad-ass. The extra time he’s getting to train should do nothing but help his confidence after a pretty soft season (for him) last year.

    • I’m not ready to write-off Peckham either. He’s shown the same edge Teubert has and, as of right now, he’s further along.

      If Theo gets in shape and regains his confidence, he’s got the inside track as the designated muscle on the back end.

  • Semenko and Troy

    I agree with everything you’ve written except for Hall’s position when he returns.

    He’s been skating as a centre with the scrubs since he’s been down. It makes sense for the ‘Hall to centre’ experiment to begin in OKC rather than the big club.

    I can see a PRV-Hall combination given time to develop, and then if it’s successful, adding Yakupov when the real hockey comes back.

    Split the elite talent onto two lines with hopefully Harski and PRV providing NHL level complementary skills.

    A Gagner-Hemsky combination can provide balance to the top nine. Let Horcoff/Smyth compete to fill out their left side.

  • book¡e

    What Tuebert has done in the last week regarding toughness is something the Oilers have not had for about 3 years it seems like. Sure the Oilers answered the bell for some situations (Avery on Smid) but that was a mere dust up without sending any real messages.

    Tuebert probably made the whole AHL think twice about stepping into Schultz and co, and I absolutely love it. Im not one for a useless enforcer to fight another useless tit, but having a player like Peckham or Tuebert is vital to a hockey teams success.

    There his skill and ability that wins 50% of hockey games while the other 50% is thinking and stratagizing. Having players out there to goon it up when needed or get the other teams star players not thinking about the game is half the battle, the other half will play itself out. Every player in the NHL is good enough to play but are they good enough to bend the rules or stepoutside there abilities to win. Thats where the second guessing for the opposing team is a key to your success.

  • Reg Dunlop

    So, if Peckham finally gets ‘it’ the job of riding shotgun is his. If not, maybe Teubert will be up for the role. The way I see it, with a number of assets requiring some degree of protection, we will need both Peckham and Teubert AND a forward to be determined later. Here’s hoping that Moroz fits in someday.

  • book¡e

    It will never make up for not seeing Dustin Penner in an Oiler’s Uniform over the last 1.25 years. If the Oilers had Penner, we could have finished as high as 26th place last year.

  • Players of Teubert’s ilk are invaluable, especially on the back end, because they are actually on the ice when toughness is needed.

    Unlike the heavyweights relegated to 163 seconds per game.

    The key is not waiting for an invitation to punch people in the mouth who run your stars.

      • Quicksilver ballet

        I’m not putting Yakupov in the same category as the others — YET — because he hasn’t played a single NHL game.

        His early returns from the KHL are promising, but I’m not declaring him a core player with this team for the next decade until we see him actually play here. That’s reasonable, no?

  • RexLibris

    Funny. I said last season that I felt that Peckham needed to become what Sutton was, a functional depth d-man who might have to earn a couple of multi-game vacations during the year.

    It would seem now that fate has decided to open the way for the young man. It’d probably be a god-send for him to train with Sutton. Sounds like he knows what it is like to carve a career out of a limited skill-set with hard work and a strong back.

    I’d really love to see both these young men make the NHL, doing what they do best.

  • Spydyr

    I don’t see either Peckham or Teubert as true NHL heavyweight scrappers, but I think they can play nasty, throw some hard hits and ride herd on the the kind of cheap shot rats that Teubert tattooed this weekend. The Fab 5 are going to need some protection.

    I don’t want to see them fighting goons or behemoths like Lucic and Chara, as Theo discovered with Horton at the end of his first season. A legitimate bottom six forward or two who can play a similar role would really help as well.

    • Quicksilver ballet

      They don’t have to fight the goons or behemoths IMO. They should do what Teubert has been doing and that is going after the instigators and cheap shot artists as Teubert has been doing.

  • RexLibris

    Not saying it’s bad what Teubert did, but this kind of thinking has outlived its purpose and is stuck in the 1980s and 1990s. Great, Teubert “stuck up” for Eberle. Other guy already had a 5 minute major. After Teubert’s vigilante justice he got 5 minutes for fighting, and a 2 minute instigator. Instead of the Barons enjoying a 5 minute powerplay, they were on the kill for 2 minutes.

    Actions like Teubert’s reward the other team for their actions. This sort of street justice doesn’t deter players from taking runs at your stars (if it was in fact intentional). If it was truly blatent, the other guy will be suspended. Why is it that every other major sport can survive without fighting, yet it is still thought as essential in the NHL?

    Do I enjoy watching NHL fights? Yes.
    Do I think they are a part of the game? Yes.
    Should they be part of the game? Maybe
    Do they serve a purpose regarding to gameplay? No

    I have no problem people saying they enjoy fights, yet how they believe they actually affect gameplay is hilarious. Oilers employed MacIntyre and Stortini, along with Peckham in a lineup, and Hemsky was still being run. Stars will get run whether you have goons or not.

    Welcome to 2012.

    • Wanyes bastard child

      Which is exactly why you have toughness throughout your lineup in a ‘non-goon’ variety. That is the point of this thread. Most hockey players are less likely to throw a questionable, dirty hit if they know they could get knocked out for it. All players have pride (and fear) and the propsect of getting beat up is a huge deterrent as it damages the ego considerably – not to mention the cranium. Having a couple of tough players who can play in your middle/bottom lineup is great. Having a 3-4 minute goon is a waste of a roster spot. Having a Probert is priceless.

    • I agree with most of this, except that if the guy Teubert came after has a concussion and the resulting problems he may indeed think twice about running the stars. That being said, I don’t think causing someone to have a concussion because they threw a late hit is admirable or something that should be encouraged, and with all this knowledge we have about head trauma now, I think it’s a matter of a time before fighting will have to become “illegal”, especially fights like Teubert’s where the guy didn’t really look like he wanted to dance and was holding his hands up to block the fists.

    • Dipstick

      I doubt that Teubert knew (or cared) that a 5 minute penalty would be assessed for the knee hit on Eberle. I saw the hit. It was as deliberate as any I have seen. I am not one to promote goonery, but in this case, Teubert going a bit nuts was the best response. Other idiots considering taking out one of our stars will think twice that they might get attacked before they can run away and hide. A little bit of crazy is exactly what the doctor ordered in my opinion. I hope that OKC makes sure that Teubert has sufficient back up in case he has to take a few vacation days.

    • Mike Modano's Dog

      Fighting DOES serve a purpose in exactly this scenario.

      Any team will take a penalty if they can injure the other team’s star, and yes, even give up a goal if need be to do so. Having the other team’s star out for a significant amount of time will allow that team to more than make up for that one penalty.

      Anyone who has played the game for any amount of time knows this goes on, and only one response deters it. Knowing you are going to have someone to answer to and knowing you will pay a price and will risk injury yourself if you attempt to injure another. When you have the toughest guy on the ice it DOES prevent other teams from taking liberties usually, but not always – even back in Semenko’s days. That’s why Sammy did what he did, and for the most part our superstar players were safe when they were heads and shoulders above the talents all the other teams had to offer in their time.

      When you don’t physically challenge that team for doing so, then you are left hoping the other team won’t, and appealing to their sense of ‘fair play’ and ‘playing nice’.

      Welcome to 2012 yourself – but I should say wake up. If you believe that will prevent the other team from taking liberties with your players you are not only horribly mistaken, but risking the health of your own team’s players all the while.

      The safest year I ever had playing hockey was playing alongside Paxton Schulte one year. It was awesome and any problem we might have was dealt with immediately. He put that on himself – even though the rest of us never asked him to. We all were given the ‘gold treatment’ throughout our games despite the fact that we inadvertently ran up the score sometimes, due to a regretable difference in the calibre of players our team had that year. The one game he was out was a vastly different story. I’m not saying it is right or wrong, it is how the game of hockey is played and will always be, so long as people care about the score.

      I say thank God for players like Colton Teubert, and all the other players that stick up for their teammates when necessary. They actually make the game safer for all players – on both teams even…by making sure the game doesn’t get out of hand, and there aren’t more injuries. You asked why other sports don’t require fighting to be part of it and it is because hockey is the only sport with that amount of blinding speed with the momentum you get from skating, where body contact is not only allowed but encouraged, and where you carry a weapon with you the entire time, should you decide to use it as such.

      Of course I could be wrong but that is my honest assessment after playing the game for many years myself. It’s okay to disagree but being condescending to others for not sharing your viewpoint while you’re wrong about it in the first place is not only condescending – it’s actually pretty humorous. Perhaps you might want to consider coming off of your high horse just a little bit if you want to state your viewpoint.

      Other than that, thank you for sharing your opinion.

  • sofarsogood

    We will have enough toughness to take care of all our top end players. it’s hard to gauge guys like Eager because Renny would not let him fight.

    With a new coach and lease on life, Eager could be the perfect enforcer………he can skate like the wind, hit, and occasionally put the puck into the net. It is very hard to find big guys that can skate like he can. This gives the coach the opportunity to circulate him through the top two lines without sacrificing speed of play.

    • Dipstick

      When that kind of crap happens, you don’t ask permission, the jerk didn’t ask permission to try to injure your team mate. Watch the coach try to bench you after you stand up for a star player. Quick way to “lose the room”.

  • sofarsogood

    We also need Zack Kassian. He likes it here, is plenty tough enough, same core age, actually has has little bit for hands. Minny has lots of toughness so you could pry him away.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Have to think one of those head hunters down there in the American league will eventually take one of these kids out. Even with Tuebert and whomever else is down there it’s open season on these kids. It’s just a matter of time and how serious the injuries will be.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    I’m cheering for Peckham. A couple years ago I thought he was getting a regular shift and very effective.

    An ON Writer posted some hi-lites of his, I think it was last week. Very good hi-lites, probably from 2 years ago. He showed good speed, judgement on when to hit, and confidence. He’s got the tools. If he can get back to that level, he will be a very effective Oiler . . . if they ever get back to work.

    Him, Tuebert, Smid, if Sutton can stick around for a couple years. Nick Shultz is no pansy. That could part of a pretty effect backend, with Justin Schultz, Petry and IF Ryan Whitney gets back to form. Add Pronger and we’ll be SC Bound.

  • Spydyr

    I said it before they sent the kids to the AHL and here it is again.

    They need an Ogie Ogilthorpe type nuclear deterrent with the Barons. As long as the kids are there the other teams need to know you touch them.You bleed copious amounts of blood.

    Who cares about an instigator penalty or ten. The kids are the NHL future .Protect them.

    This should be a no brainer with upper management.

  • Spydyr

    Moma2 says that sending and keeping our NHL players into a professional environment and the associated risk of injury without the action taking place in front of Oilers paying fans is one of the most assinine regressive and potentially devastating things this franchise could ever do,what kind of dimwits send assets like these into hell again.

    How many ways could you have imagined that this core could be corrupted??Huh??What could ever possibly screw up this perfect Storm of elite core players????The Round Freaking Table thats what—Mac T is probably going old school on this one but I thought he was brought in to help out and be vocal.Where is the voice of reason here??Ebbs already hurt his back on the right side–I saw the signs in his body language a few weeks ago,so what about that??Popped a rib out my arse as he said in the post-game interview—-he has hurt his back and you can see it in how he holds himself.Whats next,Nuges Knee??Maybe we can be lucky enough to see Taylor Hall finish his career off with another shouder injury without ever playing another NHL game,wonder if he would still get paid for that??????Now you see why I had problems on the Oilers home site,for gods sakes this is a bush league decision and somone needs to say so.
    These kids need to work on face-offs and learning how to avoid and absorb physical contact,specific training,especially the face-offs.This can all be done elsewhere.We WILL lose one of these gems to some idiotic play and the Oilers will blame it on the lockout.Decisions like this can only be made if there is transparent accountability ,no way an accountable managment structure puts these business assets at such risk,Katz is on crack to sit and watch this its like giving the Valet guy your 250000 Rolls for the weekend when all he is supposed to do is park it for you,you just dont do it.

    I wonder how many of the Knights were sitting at the good Olde Round Table for this decision????

    Colten Tuebert offers a lot more than just willingness to defend his system,he is very very good at initiating physical contact to remove opponents from the play and recovering himself faster than them,he is a committed hitter who always makes contact with intent and control as it is a big part of his style,he is something of a throwback to the old days that way,he reminds me of Kevin Lowe—and Peckham reminds me of Charlie Huddy.

    I had Tuebert slotted in last year and also this year.No reason for him to wait.On that note we need to see Fedun doing what Schultz is doing,opening up his offense and soon,because I see him as our second line backup to J Schultz in case of injury,we need a duplicate if we are going to let Schultz be this offensive in the NHL, our system needs that support—-so lets see Fedun or someone start to make a move to be his backup.And speaking of Schultz,tell your buddies to start feeding the crossice pass to MPS so he can work on his onetimer from two feet in front of and two feet to the left of the left hand faceoff circle.Not being picky just saying thats the NHL sweet spot so why not get used to it.

    And as far as the Oilers brass is concerned,I am dam glad they arent running my hockey team because this risking the health of highest end assets in a BS conditioning dynamic is an outdated old school tactic that has no place in todays professional sports world.These kids dont need to be put backwards,they worked and earned their way out of that dangerous hell long ago and this is simply stupid.Wake up Darryl Katz and smell the freaking Cappachino already!!!