McLellan points out harsh truth


Todd McLellan laid out the future of some of his players very clearly this morning. We will find out if they are listening.

McLellan isn’t afraid to challenge his players, but he often challenges the group rather than one individual.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

When asked about motivation for his players down the stretch he didn’t mince his words.

“I think there’s too many guys in that room
who have way too much to play for to decide to take a few nights off,” he began. “That starts with free agents, it starts with unrestricted free agents, it
starts with players who are coming back and battling for positional status,” said McLellan.

He then mentioned Jordan Oesterle as possibly being next year’s version of Brandon Davidson. A player who exceeded expectations and took icetime away from other players.

McLellan continued to voice his opinion.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

“So to get comfortable and say ‘I’m just
going to go into my spot here in Edmonton’, I think would be a grave mistake by
many of our players, including the very upper end guys.

“I did a study the other day, went back and
looked at Edmonton’s roster from last year. If (a player is thinking),
‘If it’s not in Edmonton it’s going to be somewhere else,’ I’d go do that
homework. Because for a lot of them it wasn’t somewhere else, it was nowhere.

“We’re in the 28th to 30th place range and
those players aren’t quite as desirable as the Stanley Cup champions,” said McLellan.

A nice dose of reality from McLellan.

David Perron is the only player from last year’s Oilers roster who is on a playoff team this year. The rest are either on non-playoff teams — Jeff Petry, Martin Marincin, Marc Arcobello, Boyd Gordon, Ben Scrivens — or not in the NHL — Derek Roy, Matt Fraser, Andrew Miller, Steve Pinizzotto, Keith Aulie, Jesse Joensuu and Viktor Fasth.

If any players are “playing out the season,” they should listen to their head coach. 

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below


Many have asked about Yakupov leaving the ice at the practice this morning. It never happened. Today was an optional skate. Some players were on the ice and others weren’t.

Something did occur at practice on Saturday morning, and I believe this is what fans are referring to, but they have their days mixed up. I wasn’t at the morning skate, but through multiple sources this is what occurred.

When the two PP groups were announced Yakupov wasn’t on either. Then while the units practised in the  offensive zone all the players stood at the blueline watching, even those who weren’t on the units. Yakupov did not. He skated over to the bench and stayed away from the group for a short time. He likely was frustrated, and I can understand why. He believes he can contribute and would like to be on the PP.

Yakupov is allowed to be frustrated, but I’m sure if he could do it over he would have bit his lip and stayed in the group with his teammates. Yakupov never left the ice. That is a very different story.

Advertisement - Continue Reading Below

Some will consider it an issue while others won’t. Players get frustrated all the time, it happens, but usually it occurs behind closed doors.

Recently by Jason Gregor:  

  • 99 NOW 97

    Hey Nail ! You are frustrated Comrade ? Really , wow , we need to go for a couple Vodka’s and talk about frustration.

    Seriously Man , dont give me that shiiit. Learn to be multi dimensional.

    Hey there is this thing called Tapp Car now – Use it. Good guy Yak but way
    over rated. Prove me wrong.

    Sorry, its the truth

  • MorningOwl

    OK, let’s answer the question once and for all…


    Who should the Oilers have drafted?


    Tyler__48 playoff games, 21 playoff points, went to game six of the cup final


    Taylor__0 playoff games, 0 playoff points

    “Trash it” = Taylor

    “Cheers” = Tyler

    • i like the implication here that everything else in their careers is entirely equal. That they both had guys like Zdeno Chara on their team. They both benefited from the goaltending of Tim Thomas and Tukka Rask. That they both played on teams with a guy like Patrice Bergeron. You know. Everything those 2 players have experienced in their careers so far is identical.

      • Seanaconda

        Also sequin was just along for the ride on the bruins playoff run. He had one great game and didn’t do much of anything else. It’s not halls fault he actually had to go to a 30th place team while the bruins drafted sequin with Torontos pick while they were contenders.

        • pkam

          Seguin has two people he should thank for his fortunate career.

          1st, Brian Burke. Just imagine if the Leafs had not traded their pick and Seguin was drafted by the Leafs.

          2nd, Steve Tambellini. Didn’t Chia offer that pick for Eberle and Tambo turned it down? And then the Oilers picked Hall instead of him. Just imagine Seguin was drafted by the Oilers.

          • Seanaconda

            I remember chia really wanted hall. But there
            were probably Eberle rumours at the time too. That would of been right after his crazy world juniors wouldn’t it?

          • pkam

            I dare to say all 30 GMs would draft Hall if they had the 1st overall pick. Only some idiots now will argue about that.

            I don’t even know that Chia did offer the 2nd overall pick for Eberle until I heard that rumor in this forum last year. If that rumor is true, you know Chia is not that high on Seguin.

  • The Last Of Barrett's Privateers

    In all honesty….Yakupov should have stayed in the KHL for a couple years, like Kuznetsov and Terasenko.
    He was totally lost defensively out there and he has one move when coming over the blue he stops up…….every time.
    Yakupov will be out of the NHL in two years

  • TheDonkeyJohnson

    I feel for Yak, the way he’s been handled has been a cluster frac.
    If he is traded this summer, I really hope he pulls a “Wild Thing” Rick Vaughn( classic line when he’s called into the Manager’s office, classic movie) on the Oilers for 15 years down the road.

  • 99 NOW 97

    Moderators – you should incorporate a skill testing question with the correct answer only permitting you to comment on this site.

    Seriously, it has become ChIlDiSh 🙂 , yes thats me , but it sucks having to
    scroll through the garbage in order to read good actual Hockey talk.

    Redirect those that fail back to Flames Nation.

    OK I am childish so what ! don’t send me to Flames Nation , i will be good.

  • Max

    Todd ‘tell ’em like is is’ McLellan will bring this team around. With PCs predicted moves and TMs tenacity, playoffs next year should be a given. The landscape will certainly look much different.

  • McPucker

    I can understand Yak being frustrated.

    I can also understand Tmac being frustrated.

    It’s too bad. He has skills. I think he’ll light it up but it will be with a different team.

  • Poloismz

    I just don’t understand why there are people who defend yakupov, he has had plenty of chances with the core players to produce and grow as a player. He has failed at both, he is lazy and his hockey sense is horrible without the puck. His problem is that he thinks he is better than he actually shows. No one in the league celebrates goals like he does, he scores his 4th of the year but he makes it out to be the 50th. What a joke.

  • Oil City Roller

    Fail Stankapov has always been playing these bull jive games. Having his agent talk about trades, the KHL, complaining about ice time. The Oilers can’t 86 this guy fast enough. Fact is, TMac was talking directly about Yak. He is a first overall bust and a fourth line player on the worst team in the NHL. Yak is going to find out real quick just how valuable he is to a good team.