First Star, Worst Star: December 28, 2014

winner

I hope everyone had a great Christmas, ate your weight in delicious food and spent way too much time arguing with your relatives about your opposing political viewpoints. You know, the TRUE meaning of the holidays! 

FIRST STAR

canada

LET’S GO CANADA! *Clap Clap Clapclapclap* 

I know it’s only been two games, and those two games were against the Slovaks and the Germans, who could probably muster up a solid 4th place finish if you combined the two teams, but #Visually this is the best Canadian junior team I think we’ve seen in a number of years. They’re fast as hell. They control the pace of the game for pretty much the entire 60 minutes. They’re physical enough to win puck battles without taking too many penalties. And they’re skilled from top to bottom! 

Over the last few years it seems like Hockey Canada has been trying to build their WJC teams like a pro team; this guy is your shot blocker, and this guy is your 2nd line PK specialist, this guy is your number 6 D-man who plays 4:13 a game, this guy is a shootout specialist etc, etc, etc. Now it appears they’ve simply taken the best players available and trust them to be able to adapt and play in basically any situation. 

I mean, you know your team is pretty stacked when in an 8-0 win your top two forwards don’t even record a single point between the two of them. 

As an Oilers fan it’s been very refreshing to cheer on an exciting team that you actually expect to win! 

WORST STAR

worst

Where the hell did this new trend come from where NHL teams fire their head coach and then replace him with some kind of coaches committee? First it was MacT riding shotgun with Todd Nelson in order to get a better feel as to what exactly is wrong with the Oilers (Hint: everything). Now that’s turned into an extended co-coaching position because I’m guessing it feels way better to be able to yell in Justin Schultz’ face immediately after he makes a horrible play rather than having to call him into your office after the game. 

And now the Devils have upped the ante by deploying a three headed coaching hydra with Lou Lamoriello stepping into the coaches role, flanked on his wings by Adam Oates and Scott Stevens. And what could go wrong? I know personally I like having as many bosses as possible, and ideally they’ll all tell you the same thing over and over again, in slightly different ways. 

Though on the other hand it has a very Slapshot feel to it, which I love. Your team is SO BAD and out of sorts that you need multiple coaches, player/coaches, GM/coaches, mascot/coaches, owner/coaches, guy who plays the drums outside the LRT/coaches, etc, just to try and whip your sad sack of a team into somewhat respectable shape. 

If you’re hiring a new coach I’m of the mind you should let HIM coach the team. There’s no need to go down there and meddle in his plans like some kind of bored middle-manager trying to kill time and wield their tiny bit of power. It just reeks of “I don’t fully trust you with this team” which is probably GREAT for a rookie NHL coach like Todd Nelson! And it’s worked out pretty well for the Oilers so far, so I’m sure it’s only a matter of time before the GM/Coach craze catches the NHL by storm! 

Let the coaches coach, and let the GMs continue to make horrible signings and no trades ever. 

  • sportsjunkie007

    How does everybody keep on missing the obvious stories?

    The Oilers haven’t been in a single playoff game since The Octane cheerleaders have been around. Plainly these girls need to be fired.

    There are only three NHL teams without mascots: Oilers, Flyers, Rangers. Two of those teams are a joke, and the Rangers wouldn’t be in the playoff picture if they played in the west. WHEN is Katz going to get us a mascot?

    When will the MSM and OilerNation writers stop missing the BIG stories?

  • Sammy p

    When I use to play rec hockey I was on a few crappy teams that lost badly, it was a chore to come to games, it was the same thing every time with no change, same players same results. When there was a new player picked up now and then it made a difference, didn’t have to be the best player, just the right player. This brings in Derek Roy, he’s a center and has a history of decent numbers but hasn’t played well since buffalo, he just needs the right people to play with, if they don’t give a chance on 2nd line they are more foolish than I thought. One other change is Shultz, good player with skill but soft as a defence, move him up to 2nd line winger where he can use his skill and speed, they are losing already, the only place they can go is up. With those two players I believe it can succeed, wouldn’t be the first time a D went foreward, and it makes sence.

  • Sevenseven

    This team needs hockey players. My biggest concern is not who we need to get rid of but who can we add? Bad goaltending and the worst defence in the league is a good place to start.I can’t even watch this anymore it is very painful.

  • 50 in 39

    This coaching arrangement is a joke.

    The only part of the Oiler’s that has shown any improvement the past few years is the farm team set-up. Management has not provided the farm with enough depth of prospects and don’t have a clue what the best placement for a player is but the OKC team has been an improvement.

    If MacT won’t let Nelson coach and he is unlikely to be kept on as head coach for next season, then Nelson should have stayed in OKC where he has value.

  • Sammy p

    Did anyone notice Don Cherry on Coaches Corner calling Yak a coward for his ” open door hit” on an Arizona player and then backing away when retribution arrived on the scene?

    Even for the outspoken Cherry wasn’t that a little over the top?

    Better that he had labelled Yak what the entire Oiler roster is. “GUTLESS “

  • Sevenseven

    This s#*@ show started when katz took ownership of the oilers. Why is lowe still around, hes the guy that hired tambo then hired mact who fired his first coach then hired eakin and said theres been to many coaching changes.

    I said this when eakins was here the oilers are playing like mact lowe had there hands all over the systems and thats why they still suck, the nhl needs to step in and do something or this will go on forever.

    Im really thinking about tossing my jersey and hope i get banded then ill just say fine oilers f@#*ing suck anyway.

    • Guy Lafleur

      Yeah but K-lowe lets him try on his rings and hold his Stanley Cup trophies while Katz holds them up and pretends hes skating around in his office !!!

  • Sammy p

    This situation is a joke. Are they really going to make Nelson stick around to never get an NHL win or will someone mercifully spare him by firing Lowe and letting his replacement build his own staff? Sooner is better guys!

    • 50 in 39

      I think Nelson is there to be the next fall guy for Lowe and MacT. Poor guy, I got to feel for Nelson. The bright side; is that Nelson, when his permanent time does come and it will, to be a full time NHL head coach, is that he would have learned first hand “how not to manage a hockey team”.
      That’s got to be worth something?

  • Serious Gord

    I’m reading all the comments here on ON and it’s clear everyone is hurting………but to suggest that our only line that accomplishes anything, ( Nuge Hall , Ebs) should be removed is laughable.

    These kids are NOT the problem, goaltending, lack of legit centers, defence, is the problem.

    Throwing out our good players is equal to throwing the baby out with the bathwater. This is what happens when everyone is learning their job! MacT should now know better how badly he equipped this team with the two worst goaltenders in the league. When you start every game handicapped by soft goals, the outcome is obvious.

    • 50 in 39

      I agree to a point, BUT they are being paid millions to lead the team and to produce. No one gives a “rats ass”, what anyone did yesterday, it’s all about their contribution to today and tomorrow. I like many others, as much as I like the kids, they need to suck it up and produce and to play like a team.

  • RedMan

    I’m suing the fuc?en oilers, I have developed fuc$en turrets syndrome I can’t stop fuc$en swearing when I hear the mother fuc$en oilers fuc!en name for fu?k sakes bit?k pric? Shi! Bastar$ fuuuuuuuuuuc$!!!!!

  • Kybb79

    Oiler fans sign a petition to blow up or remove that sign as you come into Edmonton that says ” City of Champions” LOL Don’t you wish your first overall picks had talent and heart like Johnny Hockey!

    • CooCoo

      The “City of Champions” slogan has absolutely dickall to do with sports, it honours the citizens’ response to the devastation suffered from the 1987 tornado that took 27 lives