The Oilers first day of training camp started with the RHIET (Repeated High Intensity Endurance Test) and finished with a solid focus on defensive zone coverage. The RHIET six lengths of the ice, back and forth, had pretty much every player skating straight-legged for the final two sets.

After the players finished their RHIET they had some time to recuperate, before heading to the adjacent sheet of ice for the rest of practice, where much of the practice revolved around D-zone coverage. The Oilers have been a train wreck in their own zone the past few years, and none of them seemed surprised that day one had a strong focus on the defensive zone.

They also mixed in some line rushes and other drills, but the practice wasn’t that long as Eakins didn’t want to push them too hard after starting the day with the RHIET.

Yesterday afternoon I had many fans wondering how David Perron or Ryan Smyth or others "looked." No players looked out of shape, but due to the type of practice, and it being only one day, it is virtually impossible to get a read on any player. However, I did observe a few things.


  • Justin Schultz changed his stride slightly. He is lower to the ice and that allows him to generate more power. He wasn’t instructed to change his stride. He mentioned that during the summer he remembered back to some of his skating camps and how all the instructors focused on being low to the ice, so he put a bit more emphasis on it, and he liked it. He said he feels much stronger, and he also looks thicker now than he did last January.
  • You likely noticed Sam Gagner tweeted a picture on Tuesday that his roommates, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and J. Schultz, bought guitars and are learning to play. The first song Schultz wants to learn will be Carolina by Eric Church. Schultz is huge fan of country music.
  • Nugent-Hopkins is the most effortless skater on the Oilers. During the RHIET, his stride looked perfect. He never moves his head, and his shoulders barely move. Even when he fatigued during the final two sets, his posture and positioning was excellent. He doesn’t waste any energy in his stride and that helps him in games, because he’ll be more rested. 
  • RNH is doing "controlled" contact with the trainers, but only off the ice. They don’t want him taking contact on the ice, or be in a position where he isn’t expecting a blow. The Oilers are being cautious, and smart, about not rushing his return date, so don’t expect him back until late October or early November.
  • Oscar Klefbom didn’t skate. He took a shot from Golden Bear Levko Koper on Tuesday and is day-to-day.
  • Anton Belov still hasn’t arrived due to Visa issues. The Oilers are hoping he arrives on the weekend or early next week.
  • Mike Brown’s stache looks pretty sweet. He waxes the tips to make it look even tighter. Nice.


  • Andrew Ference had the best VO2 max, 67.3, the highest score Dallas Eakins had ever seen. Anton Lander and Nugent-Hopkins were the only other players in the 60s. Ference hadn’t done a VO2 test in years; he said Boston and Pittsburgh don’t do it.
  • I don’t put much stock into line combinations on the first day of training camp, because rarely do they stay intact when the regular season starts. Yesterdays combos had people talking, and you can tell hockey is back because before the Oilers have had their first scrimmage some fans were already ripping Eakins for his combos.

    On Wednesday I asked Eakins about line combinations and he, like most NHL coaches, prefers to find duos. He’d love to have solid trios, but due to injuries, slumps and matchups, don’t expect to see lines stay together for extended periods of time.

  • He had Hall between Ales Hemsky and Ryan Smyth. Eakins mentioned he wanted veterans beside Hall for the first few preseason games. If I’m looking at combos, I think Hall/Hemsky makes sense.
  • Free agent signee, Ryan Hamilton was elated to be skating beside Sam Gagner and Jordan Eberle. Hamilton did snip a few nice goals during line rushes. Eakins is high on Hamilton, so he’ll get at least one game with 89 and 14, but I think it is fair to say that if we are looking at a duo on that line it will be the former first rounders. Hamilton could be the wildcard of camp. He has size and he’s averaged 27 goals the past two years in the AHL.
  • Boyd Gordon was in the middle of David Perron and Nail Yakupov. Yakupov and Perron are the fiestiest of the skilled Oilers, so maybe they will work well as a combination.
  • Jesse Joensuu, Will Acton and Mike Brown skated together. If Acton and Brown are on the opening night roster it will be on the fourth line.
  • Anton Lander skated with Ryan Jones and Greg Chase, while Ben Eager skated with Matt Ford and Derek Nesbitt. I didn’t watch Linus Omark’s group practice, but I think he was with Marc Arcobello.
  • Some might be furious that Hemsky and Smyth are with Hall and not Perron and Yakupov, but it is day one of camp, so save your fury until the regular season.
  • I’ve said for months I don’t expect Eakins to use Hall, Eberle, Gagner, Perron, Yakupov and Nugent-Hopkins (when he’s ready) as the top-six regularly. I think he’ll mix them into three lines, and I like that idea. Whoever plays with Hall is likely going to face the opposing #1 D pairing, which is fine since Hall played against them, and produced nicely last season, but Eakins wants balanced scoring and if Hall can succeed vs. the #1 pair, that means that two of the other skilled forwards will face the 3rd pairing. Whoever gets that matchup has to take advantage of it.


The Oilers will be on the ice longer today, no RHIET, and they will have some scrimmage time before their preseason openers against the Flames tomorrow in Calgary (7 p.m.) and in Edmonton (8 p.m.).

Eakins hasn’t released the lineups for those two games yet, but I suspect you’ll see them mixed up fairly evenly, although the team playing in Edmonton will have a more veteran team. In the preseason, teams usually give their home fans a more attractive lineup.

The first practice starts at 9 a.m. at Millenium Place in Sherwood Park and it is open to the public.



  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    What happened to not calling players young of old or vet or non-vet?

    I honestly don’t care what lines are in training camp, but the mixed signals are already starting.

    • Jason Gregor

      I’d suggest you might be reading into things a bit too much. No mixed signals that I see. Letting Hall learn a new position flanked by guys with 20+ NHL seasons combined seems smart, compared to putting him beside a guy with 48 NHL games. It is preseason.

      • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

        I get exactly what you are saying and I really have no issue. It’s just the whole vet/non-vet that was suppose to be gone.

        With that being said I’m not a fan of Smyth playing with Hall. Although I think in training camp them spending time together is going to pay dividends. Sounds like Smyth is already giving Hall pointers and helping build his confidence by letting him know that Hall will have support in his own end.

        • yawto

          Eakin’s comments regarding ‘old guy’ and ‘young guy’ were regarding preferential treatment. In the past, the old guys were given more latitude when it came to effort and determination. He comments had nothing to do with who plays with who. As Jason notes, putting Hall with two veterans during training camp makes an incredible amount of sense in terms of ‘teachable moments’.

    • Jason Gregor

      They tape the game…Coach can see lots on tape. Also, first game of camp usually has half the roster that won’t play on team anyways. You could play “bubble boys” in front of head coach if need be.

  • Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach

    Anyone see how Grebeshkov’s been doing?

    Also, someone should take the mic away from Tom Gazzola. He just asked Denis if Nail was going to be his ‘sidekick’. What a dumb question, the guy’s like 10 years older than him. Someone should tell Tom just because people are from the same nation of over 200 million people, does not mean they’ll be best of friends or ‘mentor’ eachother.

    • RyanCoke

      He will be looking at his feet all night like the rest of the Oilers so you won’t see that mug on the screen. THEY WILL ALL BE TRYING TO AVOID EYE CONTACT WITH BIG BAD “NHL HEAVY WEIGHT CHAMP” BRIAN MCGRATTAN!!!!!!!!!!

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          I hope not! I am an Oiler fan and season ticket holder who wants to see our young stars protected! I was at the game when Sarich steamrolled Hall and nobody responded because the oilers are simply not tough enough. L love Mike Brown and Ben Eager – both better hockey players than people give them credit for but the OIL really need a SUPER HEAVYWEIGHT to protect their skill- and we have tons of skill!

      • Reg Dunlop

        Honestly man, do you really think hockey needs designated fighters who can’t play the game? I like to throw the same garbage around, that the oil need a brawler to protect the kids, but I do so without any real conviction because I know it won’t for one second dissuade Kessler or Clutterbuck or whoever from trying to intimidate young oilers. Real hockey is back in town and the time for joking around about wrestling on skates is over.

        • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

          Oilers had a lineup that included McIntyre, Stortini, and Peckham, and guys like Hemsky were still getting run. Quite simply, enforcers aren’t a deterrent, they are revenge. The thing is, the other guy simply refuses to fight, and you can’t even get that. That’s why enforcers are useless.

          When Perry, the Sedins, Iginla, whoever comes to play against us, and Smid or whatever other defenceman sees them, he is going to crush them given the opportunity. Having a goon in the other lineup does not change this. Why do we expect if we have a goon, other teams will change their behaviour? It is such a weak argument.

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            Why does almost every team in our division and most teams in the NHL have a DESIGNATED SUPER HEAVYWEIGHT or TWO (LEAFS)!? Why did most of these teams finish higher in the standings tha the Oilers? Do they have more skill? heart? luck?

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            Could you name them please? I don’t see many other superheavyweights in the NHL, and even those who do don’t dress them on a regular basis.

            Other teams finish higher in the standings because they have more skill. We dress a young lineup that is not above average NHL calibre. We have potential, but other teams have proven NHLers. We’ll probably get there in a couple years.

            But having some “superheavyweight” in the lineup who can only fight another team’s “superheavyweight” does not affect the outcome of games. That’s why having McIntyre, Stortini, and Peckham in the lineup did not make us a winning team.

            Stop living in the 1980s, time has passed you by.

          • Craig1981

            If you need a super heavyweight to win then why did Pittsburgh only dress Steve MacIntyre for 1 game last yeat and 12 they year before that. And Ivanans play only one game they yeat he was healthy for the Flames. Who were the Super heaveywieghts that dressed in the playoffs for the Hawks this year BTW? OR for the Ducks or Pits?

          • Craig1981

            At least I can defend my position. Your position is hard to defend because you lack examples of heavyweights or fighters having an impact on being a deterrent since the instigator rule was implemented.

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            I like using the Palin reference….it is one that shows clear demarcation…..happy to say I’m the opposite of a Palin fan…

            And …there’s a difference between not seeing both sides of an issue…and just whole heartedly disagreeing with someone else’s opinion….like you and I disagree about Sarah Palin.

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          Then why are many of the teams that employ ENFORCERS more successful than the Oilers when the OILERS arguably have the most skill in the NHL?

          • Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things

            When you finish 30th in the NHL, all of the teams that

            – Use white hockey tape
            – Employ players over 40
            – Have a forward with beard

            are also more successful.

          • **

            LA, San Jose, Chicago, Boston, Pittsburg don’t have fighters. In Boston’s case they just have big players who happen to also be nasty, but not typical goons. The way the penalty system is now, all the opposing team has to do is let the goon be the instigator and make that team pay on the pp. I can assure you the opposing coach will staple the goon to the bench if his team is on the wrong end of the score sheet.

            The Oilers problem has not been a lack of tough goons, but a lack of tough on the boards and on the net players.

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            Dilemma….all of those other teams have size and TEAM toughness…..we do not. We have a team of teenagers and pleasant personalities.

            In a few years, if we’ve built a bigger more physical team….then yes…perhaps then there will be no need for protectors…but as of today…we are in the bottom 15% of softest most vulnerable teams in the NHL….and if you think otherwise…you’re kiddin yourself.

          • ummm you realize the problem with that statement?over the last 4 years EVERYONE’S been better than the Oilers. EVERYONE. They havent had arguably the most skill in the NHL, they might (hopefully) be in that convo soon. If you think adding players who cannot play hockey will help this lineup you’re out of your mind.

            The Oilers are going to be awesome. It wont be because a guy like Macintyre is in the lineup though.

          • Ducey

            Many teams that are worse than the Oilers (although that is a limited group) employ enforcers too.

            There is no correlation between enforcers and winning.

            The Oilers have sucked because they have had a lack of depth (on D and at C), poor systems play and a young team.

            You think if they added a heavyweight to the teams from the last few years they would have made the playoffs??

      • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

        I enjoy fights that are meaningful: not staged, not retaliation for clean hits. That being said, I go to hockey games to watch hockey, while go to separate MMA or boxing venues to watch fights.

        If fighting were not a part of hockey, would Brown make an NHL team? AHL team?

        I’m more interested in good hockey players than a guy who put up 1G 0A: 1P in 27 games for the Oilers last year, at the same time taking about 3 times the amount of penalties than he had drawn (1.7 per 60 taken vs 0.6 per 60 drawn).

        Hopefully you understand where I am coming from.

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          You see Selma….that’s what you don’t get…..if fighting were not a part of hockey….then it wouldn’t be hockey……it would be?…..that’s right…..ringette.

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            You make such terrible analogies. I guess the playoffs are not hockey then, nor world junior championships, or Olympic hockey.

            Like I previously said, enjoy living in the 1980’s.

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            Thank you…I did enjoy the 80s….and yes…I do think that the NHL Is clearly a cut above the Olympics and World Junior Hockey.

            But to each his own….

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          To be fair to you….you are not alone….a lot of people on this and other sites share your opinion.

          Question for you… you support fights that are retaliation for dirty hits….in two forms….1) Someone on the opposing team leaves his feet and elbows RNH in the head….you don’t want or appreciate a fellow team mate punching that guys lights out? And 2) there’s no one on the ice Eberle, Hemsky etc to retaliate…your against the icoach sending out a tough guy to retaliate on a later shift to send a message?

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            The thing is that you don’t live in reality with your scenarios. Even if there is some dirty hit, that a penalty isn’t called, or a suspension isn’t issued, if you have a goon, he jumps the guy, hits him with one or 2 punches, and what does this prove? It’s not even decent revenge. Most likely the guy takes an instigator, which is basically giving away 0.18 goals (or whatever avg PP rate is). If other guy doesn’t fight back, could be 7 minutes of PP time.

            If goonery was effective, I might support it because it serves a purpose. The thing you have trouble seeing is the actual result of goons, to the perceived result of goons.

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            I do get your point….I just think you are missing something…..and the only way I can think to put it….is that IMO you can’t satistic your way to Stanley Cup….(sorry about that JW) that its a game of emotion….courage…fear…elation….dejection…agony….victory and defeat…..and they don’t keep stats on those things…..and yet….7 times out of 10 the two teams that make it to the cup cup are close to evenly matched skills wise….and it’s these other factors that determine the victor…….having said that, statistically you raise a valid point.

        • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

          Without any sarcasm…I do understand where you’re coming from….I just don’t agree with you….

          Or perhaps it’s more accurate for me to say….I just like fighting in hockey….goons….middleweights…protectors….instigators….I don’t really care where it comes from….I just like it……

          It’s been my experience that every fight I’ve ever witnessed has brought 17,000 people to their feet….and they weren’t asking….was it staged?…is that a goon or a middleweight?…

          In fact….there have been many nights in the last 6 or 7 years where a fight was the only good thing in an otherwise dull game….

          The True Battle of Alberta was a WAR……and despite our difference opinion…I wish you the good fortune to experience another Battle of Alberta in the future.

          And yes…I get that you have no interest in seeing that kind of a game….I just think it might schock you how much you would enjoy it………OR NOT……I’m not saying that just because I enjoy something that you should too…… may just be that we disagree and that we like like different things!

          • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

            I respect your opinion about this…….I just have a different opinion……I like all the fights…..

            And…..not to be critical of you…..but I go back to the point that 17,000 people get on their feet and cheer/participate enthusiastically with EVERY fight!

            Now….they may say they don’t like so called staged fights …..but there actions betray their words…..

            Again….happy to agree to disagree!

          • Craig1981

            I used to enjoy fights, but now it’s pretty rare. It’s just that they are not entertaining. If you ever watch a replay of a fight, guys are missing 80% of the time. It’s just not a good fight.

            The rare good fight where two guy just let em go, I enjoy. Too bad this is nowhere near a typical hockey fight that involves 2 punches, and a guy being tackled.

            I’m not saying others can’t enjoy fights, of course you can, it is your own preference. But you people argue that they make an impact on winning hockey games, or swinging momentum which has been thoroughly been proven false.

            If you want to have a useless goon in the lineup, that is generally ice time that could have been taken by an actual player who could actually outscore the opposition.

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            It would be interesting, but of very limited value in terms of overall results.

            I’m guessing the value of having a “deterrent” on the team ranks up there with the psychological value of having a “jokester” on the team.

            That is, in some very real sense it has a benefit on the psyche of the team. But that benefit is probably very limited, un-evenly distributed, fickle and prone to being over-interpreted.

            Or, when talking about what makes a team successful… this kind of thing ought to be just about last on a very long list of things to discuss… i.e., after the weeklong conference has wrapped up, we are already out the door and into the bar and the waitress has already fended off a few too many propositions.

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            Selma (I like it!!! lol), I agree with the Old Retired dude with one exception. It’s not ringette you should be watching, it’s figure skating.

            Now go get me a six pack woman! The men got some drinking and hockey watching to do.

            PS To the actual women on here my apologies for my sexist comment (meant for fun). Plus, I’m almost certain you got more balls then this cat.

  • I don’t actually mind the Yakupov, Perron, Gordon combo. The problem with putting them in between Gagner is his face off percentage is abysmal. But if Gordon can win the draw and then have the puck be distributed up the wings to one of them, then gaining the zone and creating a scoring chance might be a little more successful.

    Putting Smyth with Hall also isn’t a terrible idea. Smyth likely will run out of gas half way through so you might as well give him all his choice minutes up front when he still has the fuel.

    • **

      Perron and Gordon are excellent two way players. Yakupov needs a lot of work in his own zone, although he did improve by season’s end. IF these 3 play together yakupov would me more comfortable to go on adventures towards the opposing net knowing he has a lot of support in the back end if the play is broken.

  • I may be in the minority here, but I generally care less about line combinations.

    All I really care about is that the most talented players are getting the most ice time, and the least talented get less. How they are combined is a minor detail as compared to their ice time distribution.

  • O.C.

    I WANT to see experiments in preseason rather than in meaningful games.

    Heck, try Schultz at center even if he is stellar on the draw. (hypothetical example)

  • vetinari

    Preseason line combos mean almost nothing — at least until you get to the week before the regular season.

    Take a look at CapGeek and you pretty much know who most of the opening night roster will be– in reality, there is maybe 3 or 4 jobs on the 23 man roster that are up for grabs but the rest are all spoken for.

    With Carolina losing Pitkanen and Philly & Boston being over the cap, are there any trade possibilities there? Would we be able to unload a couple of defencemen for help at centre or a heavyweight or some prospects/picks?

    • DSF

      Philly isn’t over the cap when the season starts.

      Pronger goes on LTIR.

      Boston isn’t over the cap either as Marc Savard’s $4M cap hit won’t count as soon as the season gets underway.

      Carolina signed Ron Hainsey yesterday to replace Pitkanen.

      • Romulus' Apotheosis

        It is my understanding that you can’t put a player on the LTIR until the season starts AND that you can’t be over the cap when the season starts.

        They either shuffle something, pay a penalty or I’ve been misled.

        • bazmagoo

          “It is my understanding that you can’t put a player on the LTIR until the season starts AND that you can’t be over the cap when the season starts.

          They either shuffle something, pay a penalty or I’ve been misled.”

          That’s my understanding of the rule as well. I would imagine Holmgren has some sort of plan in place though.

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            Can you support this assertion?

            The CBA is quite clear that all teams must be in compliance with the upper limit of the cap by the “last day of training camp” and it is my understanding that until the season begins a player can’t be put on the LTIR.

            Perhaps there is a window in there of overlap, but it seems like teams have to comply and then find relief via LTIR.

            Again, I could have been misled.

          • Craig1981

            After a little more research. It appears that teams would send down a few of their players that don’t need to clear waivers and go with only a 20 man roster then call their final 3 to make room after game one.

            There is also an amount the team can go over to pay bonuses then have it go against next year, but only being over for 1 game would be a minimal fine.



            Sound correct?

          • Romulus' Apotheosis

            Yea. That’s more in line with my understanding: having to reshuffle or pay a fine prior to exercising the LTIR option.

            But these documents aren’t exactly constructed for the lay person to grasp with ease. It is quite possible other alternatives exist.

            At any rate, we should be clear about a few things:

            1. as the article you post notes… “cap trouble” doesn’t mean what a lot of fans seem to think. We aren’t talking existential threat here. There are lots of ways GMs can navigate the messes of their own making and even under the worst conditions, there are lots of options.

            we need to stop suggesting teams flirting with the upper limit of the cap have to sell off their best players for pennies.

            2. that said, “cap trouble” is very real, just not as dramatic as some make it sound. It is a very real limit on the short and long term organization of a team.

            3. A team in cap trouble is probably more likely than a team not in cap trouble to trade away a desirable asset… but that should be as obvious as it is that teams don’t trade away desirable assets unless it is in their perceived self-interest to do so.

  • The best thing Eakins has at is disposable is skill in his top 9.

    If the Oilers are slumping in a game or need a pick me up …for this first time ever the MacBlender makes sense.

    Hallsy not getting checked to tightly flip him down all the way to line 3 even to get away from the dman markings.

    Same goes for shutting it down for the final 5 of game… Gagner not performing on the faceoffs ..send him down bring up Gordon or Acton to finish of the game and the 2 points.

  • **

    Here is a lesson for everyone.
    Last year Devon dubnyk faced 32.33 shots per game.
    He had a .920 Save% and a 2.57 goals aginst average.

    Carey price faced 27.16 shots per game
    he had a .905 Save% and a 2.59 Goals against.

    DD facing 27.16 shot would be 2.17 Goals against.

    Carey price facing 32.33 shots would be 3.07 goals against.

    Could it be that we need to be tougher in front of net and along boards preventing quality pocession and reducing the shot count to a top 10 count (27.16 shots/gm)or at least league average 28.9 shots/gm.

    • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

      The leading statistical correlation between any given center and his face off percentage is……age……..

      Gagner is one year older…so statistics say he will be better….if I were to hazard a guess he will be just under 50% this year and just over 50% next year

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    O.R.G., Hayek, you both are not arguing your points correctly. The POINT is, you hurt our little skill guy we are going to hurt yours.
    No more explanation needed.

  • Craig1981

    I thought when Taylor Hall introduced himself to Cal Clutterbuck last year, it was a pretty substantial display of team toughness. Unfortunately it cost TH a game suspension but I don’t recall Call being much of a pest for the rest of the year. And it took the skill of a TH to put himself in a place to have maximum impact, skill that is lacking in the average Smacintyre type of player, who is usually running around trying to find his target and putting his team in jeopardy.

    • Craig1981

      The Flames were pretty docile for a whole season against the Oilers after MacIntyre knocked out Ivanans in the first game of the season (he’s knocked out quite a few AHL super heavies over the years as well). Could you imagine Sarich steamrolling Hall like he did with MacIntyre on the ice, without restrictions to not take a penalty. He would have got a worse beating than Staubitz did when he ran Paajaarvi and BIG MAC pounded him to a pulp-for once ignoring Renney’s instructions- unfortunately, BIG MAC’s last game as an Oiler. HOWEVER, THE PRESCIENT WONGER IS HEARING RUMBLINGS (not gas from the cheeseburger I had for lunch today!) FROM HIS NHL CONTACTS THAT EDMONTON FANS MAY SOON BE SEEING ROUND 3 OF THE BIG MAC ATTACK – THE MARLIES AND COACH EAKINS ALMOST GOT HIM IN TORONTO LAST SEASON!!!!

  • Romulus' Apotheosis

    just read the transcripts of todays scrimmage, looks like Jones and Omark making good start to making the team, each with a goal and solid work.

  • oilerjed

    And the goon debate hijacks another comment section:)

    As to the cap chat, Dan Cleary had accepted a PTO with Philly while negotiating a 3 year deal. Philly couldn’t sign the contract until Pronger goes on the LTIR. And if I remember correctly that wasn’t until after training camp was completed. This seems to be a new way to work around the cap and still lock up players.

  • Romulus' Apotheosis

    I like the idea of mixing up the skill around in the top 9. During 5 on 5 play it doesn’t usually work out that all 3 forwards touch the puck for any prolonged period of time so it makes sense to have other players who bring different qualities to the line. Guys like Hamilton, JJ, Jones and Gordon should get plenty of opportunities to play with skilled players.

  • Romulus' Apotheosis

    “Could you imagine Sarich steamrolling Hall like he did with MacIntyre on the ice”

    No, I can’t imagine SMac on the ice with Hall. Not in a million years is this ever a possibility that should even be remotely conceivable