Monday Mailbag – March 9th

Mail

It’s Monday morning, and you’ve worked enough as far as I’m concerned. Luckily, the mailbag is here to give you 2500 words worth of time wasting goodness! As always, I need your questions to make the mailbag work. If you have a question you’d like to ask, email me at baggedmilk@oilersnation.com or hit my up on Twitter at @jsbmbaggedmilk. Until then, grab some coffee and enjoy the break from “productivity.”

Sideburns

1) Pouzar99 asks – I notice that at MacT’s press conference, when asked about the Oilers D corps going forward, he mentioned Klefbom, Schultz, Fayne, Ference, Nikitin, Nurse, Osterle and Davidson. Noticeable by his absence in this list? Martin Marincin. Was this just accidental, a Freudian slip, or is Marcinin next in line to be Petryied? Is Craig on it again or just getting a tad forgetful in his dotage? 

Matt Henderson:

I’ve said it before, but Craig says what he thinks. In this case his omission of Marincin should definitely raise an eyebrow. This is a player he sent to the minors to work on “battle” even though others on the team have never shown an aptitude for battle themselves. I don’t doubt for a second that he’s not thought of as a key piece moving forward. 

Lowetide:

It’s tough to say. I think Todd Nelson may be able to save him but there’s no doubt the Edmonton Oilers have some issues with Marincin’s physical play. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him sent away this summer. We’ll see.

Jonathan Willis:

I don’t know, and it would pay not to read too much into it. This is after all the same guy who forgot Ryan Jones’ name at a press conference a few weeks before he re-signed him. At the same time, MacTavish has never been a vocal backer of Marincin publicly and it’s hard not to take that as a suggestion that he’s not high on the defenceman.

Jason Gregor:

I sure hope it was a slip up, but their track record does make you wonder if it wasn’t. If Marincin does get traded and brings back a quality player that is different, but being dealt for more picks would be a disaster.

Jason Strudwick:

Fair question to be asked. Hard to jump into his mind. I think he can move the puck and skate. Marty needs to become more assertive with that big body of his to handle the strong cycling of Western teams.

Jeanshorts:

I’m really hoping it was just coincidental. As Gregor pointed out earlier in the week, as he got through more names he started to use full names and looked like he was running out of steam (and had a bit of trouble speaking in general lately). He ran through the names of almost all the D-men in the system basically so he was bound to forget a name or two. 

HOWEVER, with MacT’s history of telegraphing his moves through his pressers I also would not be surprised in the least if Marincin was gone at some point within the next calendar year. MOAR ROOKIES AND AHLers ON D PLEASE!

Robin Brownlee:

You seem to have your take already. Let’s go with that.

Baggedmilk:

Sideburns, man. Martin Marincin has got them, and MacT doesn’t like em.

Scratch

2) Alan Overmars asks – If the Oilers don’t win the lottery and are drafting outside of the top two this year, should they trade their top pick as part of a package to address a glaring need like a starting goalie or top-pairing defenceman?

Matt Henderson:

Maybe for a defenseman, not for a goalie. There are still a lot of good players in the top five that could be important Oilers. Strome, Marner, and Hanifin will be available somewhere from 3-5 at the Draft. If a legit young defenseman becomes available then I would give up the pick. If we’re talking a goalie then I don’t think you can pay that high of a price for one.

Lowetide:

It depends on return. If they could get a young, established defenseman under control for several seasons before free agency? You’d have to think about it. Could they get OEL in a package? Don’t know. 

Jonathan Willis:

It depends on the trade, but they have to be willing to consider it.

Jason Gregor:

If they can get that player and he is under contract for at least three years, then yes. However, I don’t see a team trading a starting goalie for #3 or #4 pick. Very few teams have two starting goalies.

Jason Strudwick:

Yes. I think MacT would have to listen to or try to create moves that are out there.

Jeanshorts:

I don’t know that they SHOULD trade it per-say. Hanafin, Strome and Marner are all very intriguing prospects to me. But they should absolutely listen to any and all trade offers for a lower pick. Not that I have a ton of faith that even the third overall pick could land a legit top two D-man or starting goalie but beggars can’t be choosers and the Oilers are the beggiest beggars in all the land.

Robin Brownlee:

They would have to consider it if they have McDavid and Eichel rated way ahead of the rest of the field, as most scouts do. Oilers obviously need some immediate help, but if they believe a D-man like Hanifin is truly something special then that clouds the issue — as does what’s coming back for the pick.

Baggedmilk:

Do you want to know my honest opinion? I’m tired of pretending to know anything about the draft. I can’t say whether or not the Oilers should trade a pick outside the top two for a proven player or not – I don’t know enough about the draft prospects. All I know is that people keep saying it’s a very deep draft, so I guess it would be good to have some prospects in the cupboard. That being said, this is the Oilers we’re talking about so there’s a very good chance they could draft an actual tractor with any of their picks, so…

Buttons

3) DyeGuy asks – I heard Craig Button on the Jason Gregor show, and he was ripping into MacT about his press conference. My question is, why do we ask ex-GMs who were fired from their jobs about how current GMs are doing?

Matt Henderson:

If you could only ask current GMs how they felt about other current GMs then you would get a lot of BS. I don’t care if he wasn’t good as a GM, Button knows how the job works and has an opinion. It’s worth a listen even if he says things you question. Basically, if an Ex-GM can’t comment then I have no business commenting and that doesn’t seem right to me.

Lowetide:

Because they’ve been there and they are more familiar with the process than we are. Button’s frank responses to Jason’s questions were very insightful.

Jonathan Willis:

Because those guys do have valuable insight and experience, even if they are no longer employed by NHL teams. As always, we should evaluate any argument less by the name attached to it and more on its own merits. Even if that opinion comes from somebody like me who (according to at least one local reporter) in fact lives in his mother’s basement.

Jason Gregor:

Because Button was fired that means he knows nothing. He knows more about being a GM than I do, so I ask his opinion. It doesn’t mean you or I have to agree with it, but often he has insight into how the job works. He admits he made mistakes. Every GM has.

Jason Strudwick:

Easy: because they know the job. Very few people have been in that position to be able to comment with some knowledge.

Jeanshorts:

I think it’s just one of those hockey culture things. For the most part everyone at that level has respect for everyone else, because of how insanely difficult it is to even get a crack at any kind of NHL gig. So I think when it’s a guy like Button or McLean who the fans (and history) remember as having mostly bad runs as a GMs, there’s still a reverence there from people inside hockey circles, because as we’ve seen being a GM is NOT an easy job, regardless of how many no-brainer trade scenarios you think you’re throwing out on Twitter. 

And to steal a horrible hockey cliché: those guys have “been there before” so on paper they’d probably be the ones to ask about being a GM, rather than some smelly blogger or whatever *points to self*.

Robin Brownlee:

Because they know the business and the demands of the job. Even the best GMs and coaches get fired. Nature of the business. That doesn’t necessarily render their opinion less insightful.

Baggedmilk:

Probably better to ask Craig Button than some random plumber. I mean, sure he may have gotten fired but he’s also been fired from more GM positions than I have. Seems to make sense as a guest, no?

DraftParty

4) Aaron Davis asks – Last year’s draft party theme was “Taking longer to build than the pyramids” and not much has changed since then. What should be the theme to this year’s draft party assuming Oilersnation will be having another one?

Matt Henderson:

I have been privy to NO inside information, but I would think this year’s theme would have to be built around “Craig’s On It”

Lowetide:

Another Brick in the Wall. 

Jonathan Willis:

Can you go wrong with “Another great Oiler decade”?

Jason Gregor:

Groundhog Day.

Jason Strudwick:

Why not toga?

Jeanshorts:

As a Motley Cure fan I nominate the theme to be “Same Ol’ Situation” and in this case the ball and chain is the Oilers dragging us all down to our alcohol related deaths. And there will definitely be a draft party this year, even if it’s just me sitting alone at the Pint crying into a table keg of Nation Beer®.

Robin Brownlee:

Blame Wanye.

Baggedmilk:

#DraftTheMall?

Vice

5) Douglas A. asks – The Oilers seem to be a vice that I just can’t quit. What habit or vice do you have that you wish you could stop doing?

Matt Henderson:

I don’t really have any major vices that I want to stop doing. I mean I’m a non-smoker who also only drinks in social situations. Outside of the bleach addiction THAT I HAVE COMPLETELY UNDER CONTROL, I’m a pretty boring guy. Anything else I do that’s bad for me is done in the name of Dionysus and I consider my religious obligation.

Lowetide:

Justin Bieber. I just can’t stop.

Jonathan Willis:

I’m crazy disorganized and I wish I could knock it off. Seriously, you should see my desk; it looks like a garbage dump in Beirut. When my wife eventually divorces me this will be why. Well, it’ll probably come second to me forcing her to live with me in my mom’s basement, but you know what I mean. 

Jason Gregor:

Looking in the mirror. I do it often at home, and the face staring back at me is always so inviting… I keep coming back for more. 🙂

Jason Strudwick:

Slurpees

Jeanshorts:

I mean, the reason they’re vices is because they’re so much fun so I’m not sure if there’s anything I wish I would stop doing. But I do wish I had more discipline to not eat garbage (BUT DELICIOUS) food and to stick to a workout routine for more than four weeks at a time. I want abs like Joe Manganiello but I eat and live more like Fat Joe.

Robin Brownlee:

Smoking. Stupid, expensive, health-damaging addiction.

Baggedmilk:

I’m in a pretty good place with all of my vices. We’ve come to a point where we understand each other. To answer the question, I probably drink more than my doctor would prefer. There are also times that you probably wouldn’t be able to distinguish my diet from that of a 10 year old – I’ll work on it… Maybe.

      • Don’t you see? They’re only slightly crappier without Hall so he’s EXPENDABLE! Also he’s probably like a cancer in the room and the sole reason the team is bad or something, but I can’t keep track of the narratives so I may be off on this.

          • Why make a hole to plug another one? Hall’s one of the best winger’s in the game. So you get OEL and now you’re looking for a top line winger. The oilers have other assets to move that could get you OEL. Including 2 first round picks in this years draft.

          • toprightcorner

            Not that OEL is even available, PHX has an elite dman to build around, something the Oilers should have done. Picks alone won’t get a top pairing dman.

            If in fact it takes as much as an Eberle or even an Hall to get a top tier dman, then MacT needs to fill that spot first and then trade from a position of strength. If MacT can get a player from a team with cap issues like Sharp, Erickson, Marchand, Neal, Simmonds, Steen, Oshie or Van Reimsdyk. If those trades could be done with picks as the main compensation then trading a Hall or Eberle will not hurt as much on the wing but significantly upgrade or defense

            I would throw Josi, Faulk and McDognah in that trade list. I just has to be someone with at least 3 years of control and under the age of 30.

          • Spydyr

            Imagine if we get the Eichel pick. That would have more value than a hall or eberle and would get you a top line dman without taking any NHL players off the current roster. I would imagine the Hanifin or Strome pick would get you one too

  • Serious Gord

    1. Read a lot into it. He’s as good as gone. (For peanuts probably)

    I just wish mact would start forgetting to mention Shultz…

    2. Should have traded last years pick and they should trade this years. Hall and RNH will be long gone before a pick this season is ready to help.

    3. If I recall buttons GM career was doomed after he rushed to sign roman Turek. Smart hockey guy who just wasn’t cut out for the pressure of GM. But it doesn’t take a chicken to judge an egg. But milbury is another story.

    4. T shirt should read: “where is the Nicholson internal audit?”

    5. Robin: have you ever tried the vapour products – I have countless clients and associates who have done so with almost universal success.

  • toprightcorner

    Marincin was shunned because he came to camp out of shape after he was given specific instructions by the team what to work on over the off season. Eakins is a fitness freak and that didn’t sit well with him and considered it disrespectful to the team (which I agree with).

    Eakins wanted him banished and likely explained to MacT that players like this don’t belong in hockey and MAcT drank the koolaid.

    MacT needs to make his decision on Marincin based on what is best for the team and not based on a grudge of a poor summer of training by a young player. The Oilers are very weak at defense so you can’t pull a “Sheldon Souray” and dump Marincin becasue of a personal grudge.

    No more trading for futures, all trades should be bringing an NHL player back that improves the team.

  • toprightcorner

    If the pick is outside McEichel, then MAcT needs to do some serious work on trying to package the pick to get a top pairing dman with at least 3 years of control and under the age of 30.

    Lots of teams with cap issues so CHI, PIT, BOS, TBL, STL, LAK, NYR, WSH would be places to start that would want to take back a lot less salary than sending out.

    If it will take a player like Eberle in a package to bring back a quality top pairing dman then trade for another winger to replace him first instead of creating another big hole and then trying to fill it later.

  • toprightcorner

    Don’t trade the first pick for a starting goalie. if a 9th pick got Schneider then the PIT pick currently at 21 in a much deeper draft should get you an Elliot or Bernier, both potentially expendable this summer. Possibly even Mike Smith though PHX likely to hang on to him after 1 bad year and I am not keen on a $6 mill contract for a goalie with the Oilers not competing in the playoffs yet.

  • Quicksilver ballet

    The handling of Marincin is just another glaring example of managerial incompetence as far as I’m concerned. Perron, Petry, Dubnyk all examples of how personal bias is costing this hockey team.

    They waited 300 games before they turned Petry off to Edmonton. How can they know so much with Martins fewer than 70 games. Why not wait till the 200 game mark when he’s added 20lbs of muscle and that mean streak in him reappears.

    • Lofty

      I bet it comes down to arrogance with all of these odd choices the management makes.

      Someone probably told Klowe/MacT that MM has good potential, and that Shultz is looking bad. Or maybe MM simply said the wrong thing at a training camp.

      Yes it’s speculation, but I get a feeling the management has it in their heads, that it’s their way, or the highway. I know they sure put that attitude forth to the public with their decisions.

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