I’ll leave the squealing and tossing of panties to Wanye, but on the occasion of Jordan Eberle’s 24 birthday today, it’s worth noting what a terrific hockey player he’s been for the Edmonton Oilers during four mostly miserable seasons with this floundering franchise.

Playing on a rebuilding team that’s done almost nothing but lose since he first pulled on the Oil Drop in 2010-11 – finishing 30th, 29th, 24th, and 28th – Eberle has risen above the futility to produce 221 points in the 275 regular season games he’s played since being drafted 22nd from the Pats in 2008.

Despite toiling with a bottom-feeder, Eberle’s made a pretty good case for being the steal of his draft class. Only Steven Stamkos, taken first overall, and Erik Karlsson, taken 15th, have outscored him.  Stamkos is the stud of the vintage with 426 points in 410 games. Karlsson, a Norris Trophy winner, has 237 points in 315 games.  

The 2008 class also includes Drew Doughty, taken second overall by Los Angeles, and Alex Pietrangelo, taken fourth by St. Louis. Outside of those four players, all taken higher, I can’t think of anybody who has accomplished more or been better than Eberle as he blows out 24 candles on the cake.



Eberle, coming off a season in which he scored 65 points in 80 games and was paid $6 million in the first year of a six-year contract worth $36 million, is just now entering his prime years. He’s not a kid any more. What you see now is close to what you’re going to get, although we could see a slight rise in Eberle’s point totals — if the Oilers actually manage to improve as a team.

While I’m not trying to put Eberle on the shuffleboard court in the old folk’s home at the ripe, old age of 24, time ticks on. It’s not a stretch to suggest that we’ll have seen the majority of Eberle’ prime years by the end of his current contract in 2019, when he’ll turn 29.

How many playoff berths might we see from Eberle, Taylor Hall, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the Oilers over these next five years after eight straight seasons out of the post-season mix? One? Two? Three? None? What are the odds of all three of them being here in our shiny, new rink then?

This rebuild fans have endured, after all, has been sold pitching Eberle, Hall and Nugent-Hopkins as the foundation. What remains is for general manager Craig MacTavish to find the many missing parts to get the job finished before too much more time zips by.

Godspeed, MacT. Happy birthday, Ebs.

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

    “get the job finished before too much more time zips by.”

    hello Atlanta Thrashers 1999-2005 “build”


  • vetinari

    I love Eberle but he may be our best trade chip to fill one to two key holes in our lineup. Of course, there is no point in trading him if we don’t also plug the other eight holes at the same time…

  • ubermiguel

    Eberle holds the most value – trade him if we can plug some holes

    Eberle + Klefbom + 2015 2nd – becomes a 1st if Stewart resigns for Erhoff + Ristolainen (need a right shot) + Stewart + Foligno

    Move Gagner + Ference for Phaneuf + 2014 2nd with 1 to 1.5 mill retained

    Hall Nuge Stewart
    Kulemin Grabo Yakupov
    Foligno Arco Perron
    Lander Gordon Hendricks

    Erhoff Petry
    Phaneuf Gilbert
    Marincin Schultz

    have Draisaitl/Bennet, Nurse, and Risto developing

    K. Discuss.

      • Nice read Browlee.

        I seldom disagree with logical post’s, but we are talking about the Oilers and how the do business.

        7 players huh.

        1- replacement for Jones

        2- replacement for Smyth

        3-replacement for Klefbom??(more development needed)

        4-replacement for Fraser

        5-replacement for 4th line center…(not sure Lander’s the man)

        6-possible addition through the draft.

        7–replacement for Belov.

        Your dead meat and washout might be different then mine, I never even mentioned Gazdic or Joensuu.

        I think you might be looking at least 4 or 5 turn overs in one summer, maybe not 7……..but RB, I’ll be the one who mentions in a subtle way that roster looks ok for being overhauled….again.

        Just saying.

        • Brad 21

          There will be lots of turnover for sure and there should be, but you won’t see six or seven players brought in from outside the organization, at least not on the EDM roster.

          If you’re talking NHL and AHL combined, sure, but that’s what the poster was proposing.

    • Sorensenator

      In a deal that sends Eberle to another team I expect to get more of a player then Christian Erhoff, good lord.

      You are also adding more players from the worst team in the NHL, Stewart is a glorified Dustin Penner.

      Didn’t Jason Gregor just say recently it would be nuts to sign a player like Tom Gilbert when you already have Petry and Schultz?

      Good thing you are not a GM.

      • I will agree with Robin that 7 new players is ridiculous but it would be a playoff team.

        Obviously you don’t know much about Erhoff.. at all. Erhoff is just as good of a defenseman as Eberle is as a forward. Did you notice Foligno and Ristolainen who is tracking quite well?

        Stewart adds functional toughness and soft hands. Is he a perfect player? Nope, but adds an element we don’t have.

        Who cares?! We need NHL defenceman that can log minutes and shelter Nurse, etc. He’d be an excellent compliment to a guy like Phaneuf.

        • Sorensenator

          Yeah ok bud, Erhoff is a top 30 D man in the league then I suppose?

          He is a finesse puck mover and we already have at least two of those.

          I don’t disagree with you as much about Phanuef other then he is a huge douche.

          You are also giving away Klefbom who is supposed to turn into a shut down type defenseman the Oilers sorely need and you want to add offensive minded Phanuef, Gilbert, and Erhoff! LOL

          I don’t care how big or soft Stewart’s hands are, if he only shows up every 3 games its a waste of a roster spot.

    • Harry2

      Im going to skip the obviois assinine trades you have proposed and ask a different question.

      How are both Kulemin and Yakupov ahead of Perron on your depth chart?

    • Quicksilver ballet

      You’re alright kid.

      Don’t mind these guys, they’re just upset they didn’t think of this first. The first guy through the wall, always gets bloodied.

      You be you……keep on keepin on Scotty P!

  • Death Metal Nightmare

    I’m not on board the trade ebs bandwagon. let the kids play together for the full year and see what they can do as a unit without being pulled here and there to try and balance scoring, let’s just score first and let the kids have fun because it hasn’t been fun for a bit. our defensive problems might be turning a corner with marincin and klefbomb and simpson(haven’t seen him, just seems to be generating a lot of talk lately). Go and buy a 2nd line C and a couple charactor player to fill out the lineup. scrivens will help the D and confidence throughout the lineup. and whoever we get with this pick will help plug a hole.

  • ubermiguel

    Eberle is a great pick based on the fact that there isn’t another player taken later that I’d rather have at this point. The scouting staff needs to dissect that decision to understand how they got there and what they can do to replicate decisions like that in the future.

  • james_dean

    I think it is possible to complete this rebuild without trading away our top line. The top line isnt broken people! We have no depth.

    The 3/4 lines should be scoring 10goals a piece, and then guess what?
    PLayoffs. No goons, hockey players on the 3/4 lines.

    Then boom. Playoffs. It’s a statistical fact. And it’s not that hard to do. Use your brain MacT, not your old boy hockey cliches about gritensity.

  • Spiel

    Could we please, PLEASE, refrain from suggesting pie-in-the sky, massive, multiple player deals when such proposals are simply meaningless and idiotic. Yes, when we hear something of some substance, like the Oilers are negotiating with LA over Gagner, it makes sense to talk of what might be a sensible, acceptable and realistic return, and it certainly legitimate to discuss what free agents we might pursue, but these massive megadeal fantasies drive me nuts.

  • Spiel

    “Outside of those four players, all taken higher, I can’t think of anybody who has accomplished more or been better than Eberle as he blows out 24 candles on the cake.”

    What about Derek Stepan taken 29 picks after Eberle? Stepan’s the number one center on a team that is in the conference finals. His numbers are comparable, and he is a center. I think it would take more than Eberle to get Stepan out of New York.

    Gustav Nyquist in the 4th round is another steal. Doesn’t have Eberle’s track record but played in an organization where he was not thrust into a prominent NHL role early on. Scored the same amount of goals (28) as Eberle this year in 23 fewer games.

    • Sorensenator

      What about him?

      Stepan is a very good player, although he hasn’t produced at the same clip as Eberle on a far better team — 73-124-197 in 294 games compared to 96-125-221 in 275 games.

      As for conference finals etc, unless you’re laying Edmonton’s failure as a team at Eberle’s feet, that has zip-all to do with it.

      • Spiel

        Stepan has one less career assist and 23 fewer goals over 5 seasons. Not a huge gap. If anything being on a deeper team gave Stepan less opportunity in offensive situations as opposed to Eberle who was essentially put on the first line and first unit powerplay as a rookie.

        How much does Stepan’s better two-way play, and playing center ice, factor in to a comparison of the players?

        Team success is not a knock against Eberle. It is a plus for Stepan. Seems to me that a top line center plays a pivotal role in team success.

        If Mac-T offered Eberle for Stepan straight up, what do you think would happen? I’m guessing Slats would laugh, have a few choice words, and hang up the phone.

        • Spiel

          And I’m guessing, as you split hairs and argue about Stepan, that you’re getting away from the point — Eberle has been terrific in his first four seasons.

    • Nyquist also scored those goals shooting over 18%. Remember when Eberle did that and his % came back to earth the next year? Bank on the same thing happening to Nyquist.

      The only way he scores 30 consistently (and this goes for Eberle too) is if he shoots the puck more. They both are at about 2.7 shots per game which is off what the 30+ guys do every year.

  • I completely agree with RB on this one. Eberle has established himself as a baseline 25/35/60 guy. We may see some years with more, but not likely less.

    The following has been fairly well read over the last few days but if anyone hasn’t read it yet here are my Eberle comparisons.

    If the powers that be don’t like me posting my links with my comments just let me know:)

  • good Read Robin and I’m not buying the re-build BS. Didn’t buy it 5 years ago and not buying it today. No how – no way. The cap world has since taken that excuse away from incompetent hockey minds. Sadly though the Edmonton hockey fan has been shovelled and fed the you know what for too long. With so many hoes to fill and looking at the duration it taken to get this far one can only wonder where the hope lies. Hall and Ebs and not getting any younger as Robin eludes to. The only thing we know fore sure is the true top of the bust of an organization is still standing tall. Yes six rings has really built something here. The cancer runs so deep that no where in the distant future do I see this turning around. The farm team is a mess, the drafting is a mess.
    On a brighter note go HABS go. Now weren’t they out of the mix a few years back for one season before they cleaned house ??
    hmmm , well we have six rings I will rest easy.

  • Spiel

    Jordon Eberle has the 14th best EVG toatl for Forwards the last 3 years.
    He is our best even goal scorer in that time.
    he is the kind of tough player you want.
    One that goes to the tough areas in front of the net and delivers.

    At a better rate than Simmonds that everyone wants.

    you hit to get Pocession and Score.

    14th in EVG.

    Lets trade Eberle?

    Find me an equal EVG scorer tough enough to deliver in the box.

    When I See people use hits (do not have pocession) PIMS (puts pressure on players to kill).
    to describe a tough Player.

    They are correct!

    Tough to win with!

    Spector is a fool!

    • The Real Scuba Steve

      Eberle goes to the tough areas? I must be watching the wrong player. The one I see floats and shy’s away from contact and the tough areas.

      Eberle produces, no doubt, but I cant remember a game where I said, “man, eberle really left it all out there tonight” or “man, eberle sure carried the team tonight”.

      Trading him while his value is high would not be a bad move.

  • Spiel

    If only the Oilers had leadership to lead the team to play like the Smurfs in Montreal.!

    You dont have to big and dumb, just faaaaaast and smart. Canadiens will be in the Cup Final.

    How’s Montreals rebuild coming along?

  • nuge2drai

    Oiler Domination To Follow

    The top six forwards on the team would have 5-10 more points each if we had a couple mobile dman who can move the puck.

    Phaneuf for Gagner and Ference. Draft Ekblad. Sign Gilbert.

    Sign Legwand. Sign Downie. Sign Winnik.

    Hall Hopkins Eberle

    Perron Legwand Yakupov

    Phaneuf Gilbert

    Petry Shultz

    Marincin Klefbom

    Ekblad Nurse

    • Please see comment #10.

      Scrawling out lines based on trades and signings that see six or seven new players in Edmonton’s line-up is childish, pure fantasy and does nothing to add to the conversation. Sign so-and-so. Trade for so-and-so. Non-starter, even with the self-prop when you post. Pure HF.

      • Sorensenator

        Agreed, 1,2 or even 3 players is realistic, with the focus on a bigger player who can play in the top six and 1 or 2 quality defensive defensemen that can protect the puck in front of the net; none of these “Tom Gilbert” type puck movers, we have already seen enough.

      • nuge2drai

        Oiler Domination To Follow

        Lol how is suggesting trading for Phaneuf have anything to do with comment #10.

        We are talking about Phaneuf.

        If signing Winnik and Gilbert are deemed unrealistic we have bigger issues than klowe- and that’s saying a lot.

        You cover the team – do you realize we will have 34+ mil in cap space after Gagner is traded?

        • “Phaneuf for Gagner and Ference. Draft Ekblad. Sign Gilbert.

          Sign Legwand. Sign Downie. Sign Winnik.”

          Just like that, eh?

          You just added six players. That’s more than a suggestion about trading for Phaneuf. Are you so busy scrawling out line-ups you forget what you suggested? Six players. Not happening.

          Do I realize . . .? You talk about Gagner being traded like it’s done. He might be traded, but when he’s dealt to a team other than Toronto, what happens to your matter-of-fact acquisition of Phaneuf for Gagner and Ference? What happens when Legwand says “I’m 33, I’ve won nothing and I’m not closing out my career with a bottom-feeder?”

          Just re-jig the wish-list? Sub in another name? Scrawl out more lines? What a waste of time.

          • nuge2drai

            Oiler Domination To Follow

            Gagner for Phaneuf is ONE Trade.

            Smyth replaced by Winnik.

            Jones replaced by Downie.

            Gagner replaced by Legwand.

            Gilbert replaces N Shultz/Smid/Belov.

            Draft Ekblad/Bennett/Reinhert.

            SIX Players…. Not happening?!?

            Are these players magically going to replace themselves? Did we forfeit the 3rd overall for setting a new standard of suck?

            You do realize we have 34 mil in cap space when Gags is traded… What do you prefer we talk about? Playoffs?

            How our pp sucks and Eakins is a bad a coach? Maybe touch on those assistants we have?

            Isn’t this all a waste of time…

          • nuge2drai

            Oiler Domination To Follow

            Gagner for Phaneuf is ONE Trade.

            Smyth replaced by Winnik.

            Jones replaced by Downie.

            Gagner replaced by Legwand.

            Gilbert replaces N Shultz/Smid/Belov.

            Draft Ekblad/Bennett/Reinhert.

            SIX Players…. Not happening?!?

            Are these players magically going to replace themselves? Did we forfeit the 3rd overall for setting a new standard of suck?

            You do realize we have 34 mil in cap space when Gags is traded… What do you prefer we talk about? Playoffs?

            How our pp sucks and Eakins is a bad a coach? Maybe touch on those assistants we have?

            Isn’t this all a waste of time…

          • Sorensenator

            You are smart like a trained animal aren’t you?

            “Gagner for Phanuef is one trade” except your forgetting the other pieces that would involve Phanuef for Gagner smart guy.

            Then you mention four more trades/signings after that – straight up ones.

            No they are not going to magically replace themselves, but you are coming up with players names that you hope will magically be inserted into the lineup!

            Legwand replaces Gagner? I thought you traded Gagner for Phanuef straight up plus a ham sandwich?

            The fact you mention Gilbert shows how short your memory is.

          • Sorensenator

            No, there will not be six new players signed or traded for from outside the organization.

            Half the players on your list are interchangeable fourth liners that are filled by guys that were healthy scratches or players in the AHL.

            There is no guarantee Gagner will be replaced as much as everyone would like him to be

            Yes there will be new players however they will not be inserted with the touch of a magic button like you propose.

    • nuge2drai

      Clearly you are a hockey genius. I’d love to get your take on my trade idea:

      EDM trades Anton Lander,Gagner, The rights to Horak, the negotiation rights to Ryan Jones, and the negotiation rights to Mark Fraser to Nashville for Shea Webber.


      EDM trades Yakupov along with their 4th, 5th, and 6th round picks in 2015, 2016, and 2017 to Pittsburgh for Sydney Crosby.

      MacT can throw in the exclusive negotiation rights to Grebeshkov and Ben Eager to sweeten the deal if need be….

      I would like to list my revised line combos but your brain may explode.

      GET IT DONE MAC T !!!!


      • nuge2drai

        Oiler Domination To Follow

        Trading for Phaneuf is possible- its not impossible like your making it seem.

        We are fine if we don’t sign Gilbert, replace him with any other average ufa dman.

        Legwand is the toughest sign, lots of teams will be looking at him. I imagine the oilers would have to overpay to get him 3 x 5.25 seems realistic to me.

        Bottom line, my suggestions are basic common sense low level moves.

        I’m not suggesting we sign Callahan, Orpiks, Markhov, Stempniak and Ott.

        I’m not suggesting we trade a bag of pucks for Spezza.

        We are talking about Phaneuf and Winnik- give me a break.

  • The Real Scuba Steve

    Before you know it our kids will be gone to UFA or trade requests and we’ll be starting another “rebuild” let’s just pray Lowe won’t be incharge of that one.

  • How many playoff appearances before the end of their contracts? Well, if their plan is to wait for Yak, Nurse, Klefbom, Bennet/Draisaitl, Moroz to become good players, because they are all untouchable, then the answer is 0, 1 or 2.

    the organization is too patient. they will waste Eberle and Hall’s contracts.

    Oilkings > Oilers

  • Brad 21

    I will say one thing it’s nice not going into another summer wondering about the goaltending situation. At least MacT can concentrate on the other needs of this team. (2nd line center and defence)