MASKED MEN

The Edmonton Oilers goaltenders have been in the news plenty this season, mostly for the wrong reasons. With Devan Dubnyk righting the ship in the last two starts, this is a good time to review the group and see if there are good arrows bubbling under.

THE EDMONTON OILERS GOALIE DEPTH CHART

  1. Devan Dubnyk 6, 4.19 .877. You should have seen the numbers a few days ago! Dubnyk had an incredibly poor start to the season, but has turned it around in the last two games. Coach Dallas Eakins gave DD big credit for the Ottawa win, and if they club gets consistent goaltending from the big man it should be a good season in Edmonton.
  2. Jason LaBarbera 4, 3.22 .871. LaBarbera got the club’s first win of the season but has been well below average so far this year. Like Dubnyk, if he returns to previous levels the club should be fine at the NHL level.
  3. Richard Bachman (AHL) 6, 1.99 .934. Veteran goalie has been very good for the Barons, especially in the first week when the club had a terrible time scoring goals. I think he’s a reasonable AHL #1/callup, on par with last year’s version (Yann Danis).
  4. Olivier Roy (AHL) 1, 2.00 .933. One game isn’t much, but he played very well and is clearly the #1 prospect in the system at this time. When MacT talks about improving organizational depth, I think Roy is the one goalie prospect who will probably survive the purge.
  5. Tyler Bunz (ECHL) 1, 0.92 .957. Bunz had such a tough season in 12-13 he’s going to need to have an outstanding year to regain his prospect status. A nice start, though.
  6. Ty Rimmer (CHL) 1, 5.02 .833. Signed to an AHL contract, Rimmer impressed in training camp and hasn’t seen much action so far this season in Quad City.
  7. Frans Tuohimaa (SML) 7, 2.44 .915. Finnish goalie has been signed by the organization and is having a good season in a co-starting role.

SHOPPING DOWN EVERY AISLE

It’s true the Oilers were looking around at their options (this was during the 4-game slide by Dubnyk) and if we believe Elliotte Friedman (and I do) this was more than a quick phonecall:

  • 12. At this time last week, no doubt everyone thought Edmonton was going to make a goalie move. The Oilers didn’t for two reasons. First, they just didn’t believe what they could get would really solve their problems long-term. Brian Elliott and Jonas Hiller, for example, will be free agents with no guarantee of staying. Second, Devan Dubnyk finished strong last week, which is the easiest solution. It’s also very possible the organization believes team defence is more worrisome than goaltending.

I think the Oilers will be all over the free agent list this coming summer and if they could get a clear upgrade (Anderson in Ottawa, as an example) that might be a worthwhile move. The problem is asset cost–if you’re getting something with high value the value out in a trade could be breathtaking (other teams aren’t going to hand these guys over).

Best case scenario: Dubnyk has a terrific season and the club signs him to a long term deal. And that will give them time to find and develop a goaltender of the future.

WHERE?

The usual, draft, free agent signing or trade. The college goalie crop won’t declare until later in the year and the Euro goaltenders haven’t established themselves (beyond Mikko Koskinen, former Islander first round pick who is playing very well in the KHL–I think he’s still Islander property), but there’s a lot of blacktop left this season. 

Bottom line: Those 7 names above are probably going to see significant turnover next summer.

WHAT DOES IT ALL MEAN?

When it comes to masked men, you never know.

  • Why can we not all just agree that we need a legit #1 goalie. Dubnyk is not good enough, this should be apparent to everyone. We can get by with him for now, but when that right goalie comes around we need to get him

  • vetinari

    I just don’t think MacT sees Dubnyk as our long term solution in net and even if Dubs does rebound to close to his career average for the rest of the season, I’ll be surprised if he gets more than a year or two extension. I suspect that at this time next year, Dubs and Barbie will be playing elsewhere…

  • Quicksilver ballet

    We can all breathe a little easier now that the Oilers only real goaltending prospect is returning to form. This is Edmonton, we’ll find whatever reason possible to celebrate a 2-6-1 record. It is far more than we deserve, according to Lowe.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    Alan…

    Jeff Micheals has be throwing around this term “activate” in recent weeks. Any idea what this term means, in todays game? Couldn’t find it anywhere in my Broadcasting for Dummies handbook.

    Would Danny Gallivan be impressed, or is this just some Yankee influence creeping into the game?

  • Jay Gray

    I have 3 names on my wish list.

    Jake Allen, Jack Campbell and John Gibson.

    I’m sure their respective teams aren’t willing to just give these guys away.

    But I do believe that the ages of these guys syncs up with the age of our core.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    There’s nothing wrong with looking to the future and upgrading or even towards free agency this summer but unless we are getting a -proven- substantial upgrade, we had better not trade for one at any sort of high cost.

    The aforementioned team defense problem is a big one Eakins has his hands full trying to tackle and until they slay that beast Edmonton could very well become the Philly of the west where we chase out every goalie we bring in thinking they’re the problem.

    • 27Ginge

      Willis reported earlier that Eager and Pitlick weren’t at the OKC skate earlier. Looks like one of them just got promoted.

      Good for MacT getting the 4th rounder back I suppose. More to come?

  • #ThereGoesTheOilers

    Dubnyk will be okay, we will see. Maybe he’s not the best option long term, but time will tell.

    All of this drama has really given me a good chuckle. Leaf fans think Reimer is worth what? Give me a break!

    Despite their start to the season, how smart is Lamoriello looking? Schneider for that cost was one hell of a bargain. I admire the concept of sound goaltending that you build a team around. It has certainly worked out well for Jersey.

    • Issue was that wasn’t the same deal that Vancouver was going to give Edmonton so it is moot. MacT had little chance to land Schneider and Bernier’s asking price from LA was probably equally as bad. It wasn’t quite how smart Lamoriello is looking but rather how bad Gillis is.

  • 27Ginge

    Off topic I know, but we now have hall, eberle and Smyth out with injuries.

    When was the last time the oil put anyone on another team out. There’s a damning stat that no one keeps.

  • Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate

    On his next shut out,

    the next days headline should read

    Doobie stones the _________*

    * drop the word “the” for teams with two syllables.

  • Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate

    Brown traded to Sharks for 4th rounder . what is going to follow this opening ? Dubbie has to show consistency that has plagued him in the past and early this season .

  • O.C.

    Brown seems like a contract limit move, plus a chance to thin out an already packed competition for those fourth line duties. Brown, Eager, Gazdic, MacIntyre, Pitlick, Hamilton, Jones (time will tell if he’s made his promotion permanent again), Acton, Lander… were all fighting for the same minutes and duties.

    • O.C.

      Brown seems like a dumping of a terrible player move. 1 point in a season with the Oilers, constantly getting outshot, and hemmed in his own zone. That we got anything in return is an absolute steal of a deal.

  • oilredemption

    I strongly believe they want to put the 4th line rw up for grabs and make competition within the organization. Hence the brown trade. It’s macTs message of saying okay Jones, eager and pitlick. Here’s a spot, it’s available and your the man so grab it and run with it and if you fail you will not be wearing the orange and blue next year.
    * key note they are all in contract years

  • Jay Gray

    Dubnyk has bounced back nicely but that early stretch of games can’t be completely ignored. It’s a long season but I would have a hard time going into next season without at least finding Dubnyk some real competition for his job.

    Good move dumping Brown. We have a few of those fourth line types now and it gives us more flexibility with the roster. I would like to see Pitlick given a chance in that role for a bit. His offense may not be translating to the pro game but his role would just be to forecheck like mad and hit anything that moves. The way he played in the pre-season would be a good fit on the fourth line right now.

  • geoilersgist

    Colorado wins and leads the league, Calgary wins again…….Could Bob Stauffer please remind us all again why it takes the better part of a decade to rebuild?……….Just asking…..

  • OilersRidersChargers

    Jack uses “Activate” to indicate that a defenceman has joined the rush, instead of playing defence. Which is what Jr. Shultz does all the time, so we hear it a lot.