How well did Adam Larsson play against top opponents last year?

, I looked at how Edmonton’s defencemen fared when played against the
best opponents in the NHL last year. Immediately and repeatedly I was asked to
show how newcomer Adam Larsson did in the same role.

The answer is that it’s complicated.

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I went over the process in Friday’s post, which consists of
making a list of the 30 best centres in the league and then using Puckalytics’
SuperWOWY function to see what happened when a defenceman was on the ice
against those players.

The wrinkle with New Jersey is that the Devils’ 5-on-5 shot
metrics were actually worse than the Oilers last year; it’s just that having
Cory Schneider in net makes a ton of difference. Otherwise, numbers for players
on that team compare remarkably well with numbers from Edmonton. I’ve also included Damon Severson here, who was the Devils’ other primary right-shot defenceman. 

The Results

Player TOI Corsi+/60 Corsi-/60 CorsiD/60 Goals+/60 Goals-60 GoalD/60
Oscar Klefbom 170.0 57.5 56.8 0.7 2.12 1.06 1.06
Brandon Davidson 203.3 54.6 57.0 -2.4 2.36 2.07 0.30
Andrej Sekera 404.5 52.5 60.1 -7.6 1.63 2.52 -0.89
Damon Severson 235.8 44.5 52.2 -7.6 1.78 1.27 0.51
Mark Fayne 307.8 51.7 61.2 -9.6 1.36 1.75 -0.39
Griffin Reinhart 112.7 55.4 69.7 -14.4 1.06 2.66 -1.60
Eric Gryba 174.7 51.9 67.0 -15.1 0.69 3.09 -2.40
Adam Larsson 551.4 36.1 54.3 -18.2 1.85 1.74 0.11
Darnell Nurse 282.2 46.4 66.8 -20.4 1.70 3.40 -1.70

So, the place to start is on the Corsi side. New Jersey got
absolutely crushed on the shot clock when Larsson was on the ice against good
players. Even if we give him a generous adjustment based on his team’s slightly
inferior results, things look bad.

Having said that, even here at the worst part of the
numbers, there’s an interesting tell. In terms of preventing shots against, the
Devils were fantastic with Larsson on the ice. Despite his awful differential,
his Corsi against totals are better than anyone
on the Oilers. Given some of his matchups, that’s a pretty desirable trait. However, as Severson demonstrates, in part that’s also just a team trait. 

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The goal numbers are a lot better than the Corsi totals, and
if they hold true Larsson’s going to be fantastic. The problem is that we’re
talking about 33 goals in total (17 for, 16 against) as opposed to over 800 shot
attempts (332 for, 499 against), which makes it easier to trust the shot data.

Additionally, Larsson got a lot of help from the percentages
this year. When we add his shooting and save percentage (the combined total is
called PDO) at 5-on-5 over the years, we can see that this isn’t normal. A
combined total of 100.0 is league average:

  • 2011-12: 8.3 SH% + 0.912 SV% = 99.5 PDO (-0.5 below average)
  • 2012-13: 9.3 SH% + 0.907 SV% = 99.9 PDO (-0.1 below average)
  • 2013-14: 4.7 SH% + 0.916 SV% = 96.3 PDO (-3.7 below average)
  • 2014-15: 7.1 SH% + 0.935 SV% = 100.6 PDO (0.6 above average)
  • 2015-16: 7.8 SH% + 0.946 SV% = 102.3 PDO (-2.3 above average)

Now, some will argue that perhaps Larsson’s high PDO and in
particular his improved on-ice save percentage the last two years is a result
of his defensive development, and that may well be part of it. However, when I
look at a
list of long-serving NHL defencemen
I get skeptical, because:

  • Nobody on the list of 112 has sustained a 0.935 on-ice save
  • 101 of the 112 players (90.2%) have a PDO within one
    percentage point of 100.0.
  • The highest names on the list are not only very good
    defencemen, but also have played with one of Carey Price, Henrik Lundqvist or
    Tuukka Rask for virtually their entire careers.

So the goal numbers look great, but I don’t trust them. I’m
also skeptical that it’s a coincidence that Edmonton fell in love with the
player in the same year that his PDO shot through the roof.   

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However, it’s also important to cut Larsson some slack that
we aren’t cutting other defencemen on this list, because he contended with a
unique challenge: zone starts.

There are analysts out there who will say that zone starts
don’t matter, because so many shifts start in the neutral zone or on the fly.
For a lot of players, they’re right, but some players have such extreme usage
that it’s hard not to imagine there being an effect. And Larsson’s usage is
beyond extreme.


I went back and re-ran Mark Fayne’s numbers, because he was
the posterboy in Edmonton for getting stuck in nasty defensive zone
assignments. Here’s what an average hour looked like for him, when playing
against top lines:

  • 17.5 offensive zone faceoffs
  • 24.4 defensive zone faceoffs
  • a total of seven extra defensive zone draws per hour

And here’s an average hour for Larsson:

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  • 15.6 offensive zone faceoffs
  • 28.0 defensive zone faceoffs
  • a total of 12 extra defensive zone draws per hour

So putting that another way: Imagine the defenceman that
Todd McLellan and his coaching staff absolutely wanted to toss to the wolves
more than anyone else. Now imagine a defenceman on another team who had it
twice as bad. That’s Larsson. His usage was so extreme that it’s difficult to
compensate for, and even if he gets Fayne-level minutes next year his numbers
should improve.

The numbers I’ve provided are open to interpretation, but
when I take team and usage effects into account I tend to think that Larsson’s
shot metrics should improve a fair bit. However, he is going to have a tough
time matching last season’s exceptional on-ice goal numbers, even with improved
shot metrics. Significant regression there strikes me as inevitable.

Bottom line? It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if he’s an
effective shutdown defenceman, but I don’t see him as a world-beater.


    • WhoreableGuy

      That’s the main issue I still have. If this is the thought process of “wait he’s only 23 and there is a chance he will improve.” is not somebody you should be trading Taylor Hall for in a one for one deal. Something extra should have come back. Larsson will help the Oilers this year but at the expense of Hall straight up is poor asset management in my eyes.

      • Turd Furgeson

        Well said!! Has anyone mentioned that Hall is only 24 and may improve?!?? Chia has been with the oilers for less than 2 years and already owns two of the top 10 worst trades in Oilers history. Lets hope hes done flushing proven young talent on good contracts for maybes….

        See Reinhart and larsen….

      • daryl

        All these writers this one included had a hard on for Hall and will use what ever metrics they can to run down Larsson but the fact still remains he was a plus 15 on a team that was minus 24.

    • Ready to Win

      There are two narratives about Larsson, and I don’t like either one of them.

      1. Larsson is an awesome defensive defenseman, and might be good at offense because he has been stuck in NJ’s lousy system.

      2. Larsson is a terribly offensive defenseman, and might not be so hot at defense because he benefited from NJ’s awesome system.

      • I am Batman

        As for narrative 2…. if NJ’s system is so awesome how come they did not make it to the playoffs?

        Keeping that in mind, if NJ’s system is so awesome why don’t the Oilers (and the rest of the league) just replicate it?

        I think that people who watch a lot more hockey than us, that understand systems better than us and finally, that they get paid to find talents and manage assets, together with measuring and assessing the intangibles (and I am not just talking the GM here) took this decision.

        We as fans just need to sit back and watch if it was a good decision or not. Only time will tell, in the meantime we can dissect this thing to death and we are still 0-0-0 in the standings (and for a change we are not last, let’s enjoy that!)

  • Oil Can

    You can look at the data with a glass half full, or a glass half empty attitude. But at the end of the day, he is a good young defenceman on a decent contract, and the Oilers were in desperate need of a d-man like Larsson. People can say the Oil over paid for him, almost everyone knew they were going to have to over pay to get a good right shot/side d-man, and they did. But the Oil were long on skilled forwards and traded one to fill a desperate need. I like the trade and commend Chiarelli for having the fortitude to make such a huge and controversial trade. He could either take some risk and make the trade or we could continue ending up around the bottom of the standings yet again next year. A lot of people like to think he should have gotten more for Hall, and I’m sure Peter tried for more, but if that is the best deal he could get, then you just do the deal and move on. And like it or not, the left wing position is the easiest in the league to find players at. Now let’s hope Peter can somehow get us a second pairing, right shot offencesive d-man to use on the first power play unit. And yes other teams are not just going to give the Oilers that kind of player for a very small return, and will probably cost another good young forward. And if it does then so be it, just make the trade and move on.

    • Turd Furgeson

      A million thumbs down!! You were obviousely the first in line to drink the koolaid!! A friendly piece of advice all the “yes” man lositions at oilerville are already filled by howsen and MacT

    • The problem with this argument is that Taylor Hall is alot better then a “good young forward”. Chiarelli acted out of panic and desperation and the result is we traded one of the best players in the game for “a guy who can play decent-ish defense”. Hall’s going to rip the eastern conference a new one next year and we’ll all be sitting back wishing we had a guy like that on our team, while we “enjoy” watching the Oilers grind out 2-1 victories. Maybe.

      • Oil Can

        WOW, one of the best players in the game? Is this the same Taylor Hall that was not good enough to make the Canada Cup team, or the last Olympic team, or EVER lead his team to the playoffs. Look I like Hall also, but he is not some kind of Hockey God as some Oiler fans are making him out to be. And be honest with yourself, Milan Lucic is a very good replacement. Lucic is not going to be as flashy as Hall and he probably won’t put as many points, but he will bring a lot to the team that Hall just did not bring. I wish Taylor all the best success that he can achieve, but the Oil had to improve their defence and they did that. Unlike a lot of people on this site I still cheer for the logo on the front of the jersey, and not just the name on the back of the jersey.

    • ifiwasgm

      How do you know this was the best deal? It was made 3 months before season even started

      I suppose it was probably the best deal if you had to make a deal before you went to go golfing.

  • OakleyOil

    He’s young and has a very friendly contract, no he’s not worth a straight up trade for hall but he will do what Chiarelli wants and that’s hit hard and keep the puck from going in the net. He has a lot of experience playing against elite goal scoring talent in the east and will bring that to the Oilers. He is going to have a lot of eyes on him in that first game as an oiler though… great article BTW John.

  • Twitch

    I sure hope I’m wrong but better and good enough are not the same and with how horrible our defense has been just better may not be close to good enough. I predict a 5th in the Pacific ahead of Phoenix…err Arizoner and the Canuckleheads. Unless Chia pet can swing another deal

    • DoubleDIon

      I agree with you. I think the Oilers finish 5th too if this is the final product. I think the Larsson trade actually makes you guys worse by quite a bit.

      A healthy Klefbom and McDavid is what makes you massively better. Hopefully for you Klefbom can stay healthy, if not, the Oilers will finish bottom 3 in the league. If he does you’ll be in the playoff race.

    • madjam

      Yes , he will be roasted if he does not meet or exceed expectations , just like Pronger and Peca when they were here and performing badly right up to New Years . If he continues not to shine after that , then fans should be roasting management and coaching , rather than the player . For ten years now we have roasted the players rather than the culprits responsible for not getting our talent to develop and match or exceed expectations . It simply cannot , and is not always the players fault , certainly not for 10 years of constant futility , and last year once again no exception . We have another generational talent in Puljujarvi that we hope can meet expectations within the structure of Oiler futility and development of top talent at a higher level than in past 10 years . Management and coaching only gets a pass when team reaches playoffs , and should not be adverse to criticism until then .

      Last year we had Sekara ,Talbot , Reinhart and McDavid that should have had us going upwards in standings , but did not . This year we have Lucic , Larsson and Puljujarvi to try and bring us up , despite losing Hall .

  • Oilerchild77

    Just having a healthy Klefbom makes their defence a lot better. Add a capable defender like Larsson and it looks even better.

    Last season they began the year with Jultz in the top pairing. This year it will be Larsson. I’d say that’s a significant improvement. That said, no I didn’t love the Hall trade, but what can you do when every other team knows what you need?

  • You just got LITT up!

    I feel bad for Larsson … Chia has put him in a horrible spot. Is Larsson good enough right now today to justify trading Hall? I think most agree the answer is no.
    If / when the Oilers have a bad start to the season, I think everyone will turn (even more than already) on Larsson and blame him. That’s not fair, that blame should start and stop with Chia, he’s the one who traded Hall for magic beans.

  • RJ

    Controlled zone exits have been an issue for ten years. The Oil really don’t have a quality defenceman for this. Is Larsson going to improve this metric with 22 minutes per game?

  • Bills Bills

    “It wouldn’t surprise me in the least if he’s an effective shutdown defenceman, but I don’t see him as a world-beater.”

    All the fancy stats and this is your determination? Are you sure you want to stand by such a bold statement JW?

    Here’s my problem with defensive zone starts. Is a defensive zone start calculated the same if it is RNH taking the face off versus Travis Zajac?

    What about Patrice Bergeron? How does the Boston defence fair in the defensive zone starts category? Or in the offensive zone start area when PB is taking the face off? It really doesn’t matter. The transition of play in hockey is too fast for fancy stats to give you a reliable outcome. Baseline? Sure I will give them that. But this isn’t some magic voodoo, there is no greater evaluation available as watching the player play, period.

    Personally I can’t say I’ve seen Adam Larsson play more than a couple of times and I am sure he will be an effective shutdown defenceman but I doubt he will be a world beater. :-/

  • Foximus

    With Klefbom healthy and (hopefully) Nurse progressing, adding Larsson should make the Oilers d better overall.

    Also a full season on McDavid driving the play in the offensive end will hopefully let Larsson play his game – only better.

    Lots of moving parts here and a VERY different team hits the ice this October. I think Larsson will prove a valuable addition to this team and Lucic will help us move on from Hall. What’s done is done.

    Oil make the playoffs.

    • Seanaconda

      Nah there would still be trades if teams just went off numbers.

      Idk why you think there wouldn’t be still have to balance your team and deal with the salary cap/real world money and people aging. Cup windows rebuilds it would more or less be the same

      Baseball’s pretty much all numbers and trades still happen.

    • Normally I don’t respond to these comments, because I watch a lot of hockey.

      During the 2015-16 regular season I watched 82 Oilers games (rewatching many of them as part of tracking initiatives), plus other games based on assignments elsewhere/desire to see a particular team/player. In the postseason it was pretty much a playoff game every night, and sometimes multiple games on nights where I was assigned a nightly recap over at B/R. This summer I’ve gone back to specifically watch Larsson/NJ games to get a better read on the player.

      I don’t have an exact count, but it was a lot of hockey, so when I’m told to “watch the game” I generally chuckle and scroll down.

      However, there’s a point here worth making: subjective vs. objective. Analysts may differ on the information presented statistically, but the numbers are objective and unchanging – hard data that can’t be denied. Whereas when you and I and Peter Chiarelli watch a hockey game we all take different things from it. Of the three of us, I’d be inclined to trust Chiarelli’s instincts, for obvious reasons. But while his set of filters are going to be superior to yours or mine, he’s still filtering the game through his particular lens and so it’s always valuable to have a truly objective point of comparison.

      None of this is necessary for a fan who just wants to sit down, have a beer and enjoy the game. But for anyone in the hockey business, the numbers at the very least provide an objective sanity check and anchor point. I imagine that’s how most fans at this site who read the numbers posts use them; not as a replacement for watching an Oilers game but rather as a supplement.

      • Dirtski

        Wow…Will absolutley pwned this guy. Feels like I witnessed a murder. This was like Tyson in his prime mauling jultz in a boxing ring. Or eminem freestyle battling sly stalone. Just a massacre.

        *reminds self not to make stupid comments on willis articles.

        *looks at jeanshorts comment again……

        *claps hands and runs into wall.

      • Dan 1919

        JW I knew some of you guys had to be watching Larsson footage already… How does he look in games, does he often break up plays calmly then take a few steps and pass it out of the zone… does he disrupt the play by crash bang intercept, wak it out and call it a shift?
        Skating puck control?

        … how would you describe his visual play?

        • Explicit

          This all day! I would also like to know the visual on him! I havnt seen him play much and never really paid attention to his game specifically. The numbers seem to indicate a guy that can play tough comp and tough zone starts and still swim but is lacking offense. I’m just a basic fan of hockey and have no interest in analytics, but from the little reading I’ve done it sounds like he’s a decent skater, not overly physical but will take the body to get the puck. Sounds like he can make a good first pass and has a good stick. Am I off base?

          Does he have a good point shot? Can he get pucks thru? What is it about his game that everyone keeps calling him a defensive defenseman? If he can get to pucks and put it up ice, won’t his numbers skyrocket since he’ll be giving it to McDavid and eberle and the rest?

      • Cowbell_Feva

        So you watch slightly less hockey than any GM in the NHL. And yes, I would take Chiarelli’s set of filters over yours any day of the week. He has taken a bad team to the promise land before. That set of data is what is undeniable.

        To say all these advanced stats are hard data that can’t be denied. I respectfully disagree. Just an article above your Lowetide has NHLE numbers that can be skewed one way or another, just as the tough zone starts and other factors will ultimately effect what a given players Corsi or Volman or +/- will show.

        It is a lot of work to calculate but doesn’t always paint as accurate a picture as you state that they do. I recall the Oilers being a much better team under Eakins due to fancy stats….but they were probably actually worse.

        Edmonton and Montreal seem to think that this objective point of comparison isn’t even worth having around.

      • Bills Bills

        The numbers are not reliable. Objective? Sure, they don’t care who is who. But reliable? That’s a farce, there are way too many variables, they are getting better as more data is analyzed. Type of shot, position of shot, etc. Etc. Etc.but it leaves out so much that it is anything but reliable. Was the puck bouncing? How long was the player on the ice? Begining of shift or end of shift for the 10 different skaters on the ice that could all potentially play a role in a scoring chance. Was there a bad bounce off the glass that caught the goalie off guard? Did the ref have the puck go off his skate? Was there a broken stick on the ice? Was the shot screened? Did a player lose an edge.

        On every goal scored when you rewind and it again you see one, two, three, four or more players that were directly involved in the play that anything they do different could result in a different outcome. All it takes is a rut in the ice for a play two minutes before to completely alter an outcome. Your fancy stats do not account for that.

      • cberg

        Great points and great article. Actually the stats are very interesting. For those that focus predominately on Corsi then Larsson looks terrible. For others looking at other stats, he’s not too bad. In all cases, there are extenuating circumstances which you point out and at the end of the line you’ve got to watch him and see what he brings to the team.

        Personally, as a Flames fan I like Larsson and think he can develop into a top-notch D man, though the offensive potential seems pretty debatable. But that’s not the be all, end all. Heck, Calgary has 3 of the the top 10 offensive D in the league, but keeping the puck out of the net has been a real challenge. It’s the net effect that matters most and Larsson may be great at just that.

        I believe one of the Oiler fans’ biggest challenges is going to be the changing culture on the Oilers. The dream of a run ‘n gun 80’s juggernaut is dying a slow death but overall the team seems to be improving, including replacing Hall with Lucic and bringing in Larsson. It’s going to be interesting from a team perspective, and from a Corsi p.o.v. to give us further insight into these fancy stats and their actual utility.

  • a lg dubl dubl

    Imo, it doesn’t matter what the fancy stats say, if the top ) forwards and top 4 dmen can’t stay healthy, the oilers are sunk.

    Here’s to the team working overtime on their conditioning and the hockey gods giving the team a relatively healthy year. Then they should make the playoffs.

  • CMG30

    Larsson is a legit top 4 D. The jury is still out on whether to not he’s a bonafide top pair guy and nothing in the article has changed my mind on that. A couple years ago people were talking about him as a draft bust, but he’s really turned it around and now things are looking up. There is no doubt in my mind that he will help the Oilers blueline, but is he The Answer?

    The trouble is that defensemen never develop in a straight line and Larsson is only 23 with miles to go. The Oilers have to be in a ‘win now’ mentality so pinning our defensive hopes on a promising-but-not-proven player like Larsson is a huge gamble. But when you throw away an proven, elite winger in order to make that gamble, it goes from huge gamble to insane gamble.

    What’s done is done. I will never like the price the Oilers paid on that trade but if they make the playoffs next year, I will live with it. If they don’t, that’ll be me at the front of the mob with the pitchfork.

    • This was a by-request piece, specifically asked for by readers. Moreover, the trade that brought Larsson to Edmonton is not mentioned; the focus was solely on player performance, independent of acquisition price.

      If you’re not interested, you’re more than welcome to skip over this particular piece. There were three other articles on this site yesterday, so even if you’r jonesing for Oilers content in late July you can find something to read here without seeing the name “Adam Larsson.”

  • Explicit

    I can’t wait to see what Larsson is going to do in Edmonton. I’m optimistic he’s going to exceed expectations. Even if he doesn’t, I’m glad we finally have a RHD that can play minutes and not sink.

    Reading all the comments still whining about the Hall trade weeks later is making me like Larsson even more!

    • ifiwasgm

      I really really really really want the Oilers to finally get better.
      My team making bad trades does not make me feel good. I really hope they make the playoffs this year, but if they do it won’t be because of the terrible Hall trade.
      Its hard to let it go when people keep making dumb comments like this as a good trade.

  • a lg dubl dubl

    Off the wall thought for Mr Willis.

    Should have a some sort of charity thing where we try to guess Larssons #. People can throw in 10 bucks and all proceeds go to the stollery or a charity of ONs choice.

  • nuge2drai

    Oiler Domination To Follow

    Still not sure why we traded Taylor Hall for this guy.

    He’s not offensive. He’s decent Defensively.

    I would have much rather signed Demers at 4.5 and called it an OS.

    In reality 95% of the bloggers in this site could have done a better job running this team the past decade.

    In fact, there has never been a professional sports team run worse than the Oilers over a decade span.

    This trade was terrible, just horrific.

    As fans should we really expect anything less from this joke of a franchise.

    • daryl

      You idiots think that this trade occurred in a vacuum it did not it occurred in a league where RH dmen are highly valued and LH wingers are not yes Hall was a very good LH winger and at this time Larsson is a good RH dman. This is the deal Peter made would he have liked to get more for Hall of course you idiots but this was as good as it got. We have known for 10 years our defense sucked and the old guard did nothing. Well there is a new sheriff in town boys and all bets are off. Good for you Peter for having the guts to pull the trigger.

      • nuge2drai

        Oiler Domination To Follow

        Yes we are idiots.

        Questioning Oiler Management makes us the dumb ones.

        Everyone else drinking ten years of Kool-Aid they are the smart ones.

        Is Hamilton not a RHD? But your right Reinhert is better.

        Even though all analytics show other wise.

        Is Demers not a RHD? But your right Larsson is better.

        Even though all analytics show otherwise.

        Is Wisniewski not a RHD? But your right who needs offence from the D?

        Even though we are easily the lowest scoring defence in the league

        Last year we had a shot to fix the D, we paid a steep price.

        It didn’t happen.

        This year we had a shot to fix the D, we paid a steeper price.

        It hasn’t happened.

        No more jersey buys, no more long drives to from Calgary to catch games. I’m done.

        Personally Hall was my favourite player on the team. We should have kept him.

        I’m sure there are many fans like me out there who have lost faith in this everlasting rebuild.

        Rebuild 4.0 – here we go!

        • Randaman

          That’s a pretty poor comparison. Petty was an upcoming UFA whereas Larsson is signed for five years at a value amount.

          Yes, MacT was and still is an idiot, I’ll give you that.

          Get over the trade. He’s not coming back

          • Bubba Train

            I take offence at any “get over the trade” comments.

            We should hold every trade accountable if you are a true fan. Trading your best players for lesser players is a great way to stay I the basement. Judge the trade today and a year from now. Judge any free agent signings independently.

            Oilers GM asked us to believe Petry was not worth signing and then could only get a third and fifth. Loyal fans understand.

            Oilers GM asked us to believe Rienhart was ready for top 4 minutes. He was not.

            Oilers GM says “it’s the price you pay” for top RHD. Loyal fans understand. Yet Florida added three RHD this off season and it cost very little.

            Just ask yourself “who could we trade Adam Larson for today?” The list of who he could bring back is quite disappointing and certainly right, Hall is not coming back for Larson, no fool would make that trade.

            So we can cheer the team on, and not hold trades against individual players, however we should not forget how we got here and the decisions along the way.

          • I am Batman

            “We should hold every trade accountable if you are a true fan”…. yeah? why? Fans are here to enjoy hockey, not to hold anybody accountable. The only one who should hold anybody accountable is the organizational structure, so GM is held accountable by owner, coach by GM, players by Coach, etc.

            “Loyal Fans understand”…. loyal to whom? Petry? I have no loyalty whatsoever to any player, I do to the team. And before I judge a move I make sure I see results first.

            Let’s suppose your point is not completely idiotic and that we decide to NOT “get over the trade”… cool, what do we do now? We go to Kingsman and ask for Chiarelli’s head? (not that they are giving it to us) We stop enjoying the game we are fans of? Or we just join you in complaining like a 7 year old girl (with all due respect to 7 year old girls)?

            Let’s say we get your point and we even agree to it. what now? Give us the plan oh great anti-hall-trade leader.

            PS. Get over the trade

          • OTOF2

            Like you say “fans are here to enjoy hockey”. I can only speak for myself but watching the leagues worst team for ten years and counting is not very enjoyable. And having to put up with the losers who are responsible for this tire fire still working for the team is an extra kick in the nuts.

          • OilersGM

            I agree 100%
            Like Bubba Train said idiots are running the team
            We got a G.M who has won a cup and is experienced to take the team to the next level but we forgot so quickly he is the idiot that traded Seguin as well and he was supposed to be here so he can fix the other idiots(MacT) mistakes but instead his listening to them example getting Reinheart, Talbot, Lori Korp, all this players MacT was trying to get the year prior…. It’s not the product on the ice that’s failed us it’s the idiots who put them there have…

          • Seanaconda

            Who is this third rhd I keep hearing Florida added? Yandle shoots/plays left they got 2 demers and pysyk so a number 3/4 and a guy that was a 6/7 on buffalo. Unless I missed a signing or trade somewhere ekblad is their number one on the right side soo

            And no offense to pysyk but I’m sure the oilers can sign someone better or as good as him.

    • Oilerchild77

      Yeah, yeah. Look, if the team starts to play better defensive hockey (which I believe they will) and they start winning, nobody will care about the Hall trade anymore and neither will you.

  • The Last Big Bear

    Remember that time the Oilers acquired a shut-down defenceman from New Jersey? The one who faced very difficult zone starts and top-tier opponents, but still managed to post respectable advanced stats? And then after he was traded it became obvious that Andy Greene had basically been carrying him like a backpack the entire time?

    Well, I’ve got good news and bad news…

    The good news is that Larsson is better and younger than Fayne.

    The bad news is that Andy Greene has been Batman in NJ, while players like Larsson and Fayne played Robin. Larsson is younger and better than Fayne, no question. But the Oilers didn’t need a better Robin.

    They needed a Batman.

    • Dan 1919

      IF Greene is a Batman, they were rumored to cost a Dr. Drai, Nurse & 4th pick(for Subban)…

      Plain and simple, with our 1 dimensional 40-60 point small forwards, we just aren’t the Harlem Globetrotters in Edm that many Edm fans seem to think this team is… If you want to see forwards who would fetch a number 1 D, look at perennial playoff forwards. Their names are Crosby, Malkin, Thornton, Benn, Kane… To get a number 1 D you’d at least need a number 1 forward… I’m a huge Hall fan, but the fact is Eberle or RNH alone weren’t going to get what we needed. And we’ve already proven that if we went into this year again with no D, we’d be in the lottery.
      I’d rather them trade Hall and compete, then keep Hall and miss the playoffs for 2 more years until the current D are HOPEFULLY ready.

      We need to give this trade at least half a year before seriously saying it was a bust, and that’s a possibility… but I’m glad the team did something rather than nothing.

  • nuge2drai

    Oiler Domination To Follow

    Yes the Oilers will be better next year.

    The removal of Shultz alone makes us a .500 team.

    Add a healthy Nuge, Eberle, Klefbom and McDavid and we improve.

    Of course the team will be better, how could we be worse.

    Trading Hall for magic beans will not be the reason why.

  • nuge2drai

    Oiler Domination To Follow

    For the morons justifying this ridiculous trade.

    Here’s the TRUTH.

    Hall, Demers, Lucic > Larsson, Lucic

    Hall, Demers, Lucic, Schenn, Wisniewski > Larsson, Lucic

    We could have easily signed Luke Schenn and Wisniewski for 3 mil.

    Signed Demers and Lucic for 10.5 mil.

    Lucic McDavid Eberle

    Hall Draisaitl Pujjarjvi

    Maroon Nuge Pouliot

    Klefbom Demers

    Sekera Fayne

    Schenn Wisniewski


    This Team WOULD be under the cap. NHL defence. Amazing Top 9.

    Cheers if you prefer this roster to the one the Harvard guy put together.

    Trash if… Not sure why anyone would trash this, but go ahead.

      • nuge2drai

        Oiler Domination To Follow

        Hall was signed for 4 more years, we signed Lucic, and Demers was willing to sign here..

        Wisniewski will sign a 1.75 one year deal, If Oilers want him.

        Schenn signed for 1.25 a year. We could have signed him for 1.5 mil.

        What are you talking about?

        • Explicit

          How do you know Demers was willing to sign here? Since the oilers brought him in for a visit I would imagine the oilers were interested in signing him, since he signed in Florida I assume he wasn’t sold on the idea. And how do you know Lucic would still come if hall was here? And how would 2 6mil left wingers look on the cap?

          • nuge2drai

            Oiler Domination To Follow

            For one it took a week before Demers got an offer he was willing to accept.

            Secondly, Ryan Rishaug tweeted Demers was a backup plan if Oilers did not land a RHD via trade.


            Hall, Demers, Lucic > Larsson, Lucic

    • Oilerchild77

      How the hell do you know what they could have “easily” done!? Were you in on the negotiations? Do you know the requirements each of those players had?

      News flash. Many players want something called “term” on a contract. What if Wisniewski wanted too much term? Did you consider that in your blind rage? I sure as hell wouldn’t give him any because he’s been brutal for about 3 seasons now. Then there’s the classic draft bust Schenn you mentioned. Are you kidding me!? That guy’s right in the Colton Teubert category from what I’ve heard.

      • nuge2drai

        Oiler Domination To Follow

        Oilers could easily sign Schenn for 1.5 because he signed for 1.25.

        Solid stop gap until Nurse, Reinhert or Davidson is ready.

        If they are ready now Schenn could be the #7 d.

        Oilers could sign Wisniewski because he remains unsigned – not by choice.

        So what are you talking about?

        Are you really suggesting these two players were unsignable?

        Lol some Oiler fans. No wonder this team never improves, fans are drunk on the kool-aid, justifying terrible trades and treating Defenseman like white whales.

        It’s a joke.

        • Seanaconda

          You’re grumpy today hey. Idk why we would want schenn we want a puck mover. Not a slow stay at home dman And tbh most fans of the teams he’s been on didn’t like him.

          More famous of a last name tho so I guess that’s something?

          And tbh I’m pretty sure davidson proved himself last year. Let’s see who or if they pick someone up or if they decide to toss davidson on his offside on the bottom pairing with reinhart or nurse

        • Oilerchild77

          I think you just earned “dumbest fan” award. I’m not justifying anything. But I don’t want Wisniewski because I think he sucks, and so does Schenn. Clear enough A-hole?

    • Cheap Shot Charlie

      When you say “pro-scouts”, do you meet people who watch other teams to evaluate talent that you could acquire? This is a fantastic idea! You should really pitch that to the Oiler front office! This could be revolutionary!!!

  • pkam

    Did I read it right?

    Damon Severson seems to beat Larsson in every category except GF. And he beats Larsson in Corsi-Diff and Goal-Diff by a fairly wide margin.

    Not only that Severson is a RHD, he is 2 years younger. So it looks like Severson has even more potential than Larsson.

  • I am Batman

    Serious point of discussion, nobody seems to give a straight answer:

    To everybody who is still trying to argue or talk about the Hall trade, everybody who is calling Chia (or management) stupid, who has said 1700 times how the Oilers lost the trade…. to everybody going over the numbers and concluding that Larsson was not the right pay back for Super Hall.

    What do you want? What are you complaining for, what is your objective?

    Seriously, according to all you peeps that think this was a terrible trade (maybe it was, but that is not the point) what are you pursuing now?

    • nuge2drai

      Oiler Domination To Follow

      One – hold the team accountable.

      Two – prevent future ridiculous terrible trades (Nuge for Dumba).

      Three – stop fans from going to games, buying merchandise.

      Four – fire MacT, Howson and Lowe.

      Five – possibly have Chia fired, this guy is terrible(Reinhart, Larsson).

      Six – trade for Hall back, too bad we don’t have the assets.

      Sigh. No one would trade Larsson for a top 20 scorer. Yeah brutal trade.

      • Randaman

        Question for you, would you have traded Drai, the #4 pick, Nurse & another prospect for Subban?

        If you answer yes to that, I understand your “Domination to follow” idiocy.

        Send your resume to Bob. You never know…

        • nuge2drai

          Oiler Domination To Follow

          Read the earlier posts,

          I would have kept Hall and signed Demers.

          Hall, Demers, Lucic > Larsson, Lucic

          It’s not rocket science bud, even though Oiler Management will try to convince you otherwise.

          Imagine how bad this team would be if we didn’t win the McDavid sweepstakes.

      • I am Batman

        Rachel is that you????

        Yours is a solid plan! Our governors should hire people like you!

        How do you suggest we do 1, 2, 4, 5 and 6?

        As for point 3, whatever, whenever I go to a game somebody invites me and I go for the social aspect because I enjoy the game more on TV. So guess I am with you on one point out of six (point number 3) ; however you do see how you have no impact whatsoever in your points, correct?

        So… my point is, instead of female dogging about this all day and night and since you cannot do anything about it, maybe focus on the things you can control? which things can you control about the oilers? NOTHING, this is not a democracy bud.

        • pkam

          This is a blog to share fans opinion. If we should only post things that we have control, then majority of the post here shouldn’t be post. Why fans here still complain about Lowe, MacT and Howson still have a job? If Katz likes to hire them, why should we complain here? Do we think we have control over that?

          And in my opinion, discussing whether a trade is winning or losing is more meaningful than calling to fire some staff that you don’t like.

        • nuge2drai

          Oiler Domination To Follow

          I can stop driving in from Calgary to watch games.

          I can stop buying Jerseys for me and the kids.

          I can stop forcing my wife to watch games.

          I can stop buying merchandise.

          I can stop defending this ridiculous organization to all the flames fans I encounter everyday.

          All of which I plan on doing as of now.

        • Oil City Roller

          Dude you could be more wrong. Democracy isn’t about casting your vote in some stupid election once every four years. Sure Katz can do what he wants with the Oilers as long as he’s making money. Take away the gravy and Katz will change things.

          If you feel like your getting value for your money from the Oilers then fill your boots bro. I haven’t spent a nickel on this team for many years and I won’t as long as Lowe and MacT are around. Honestly, it makes it a whole lot easier to see this franchise for the mockery it’s become. It’s absolutely priceless to watch these hapless clowns try to manage a hockey team and tell the world what great hockey minds they are while they fail miserably. All for the low low price of nothing.

          Free your wallet and your mind will follow.

          • Seanaconda

            Democracy is totally about voting a leader in. Well voting in general but too big of a population so we can’t all vote.

            It seems to me like you’re talking more about capitalism

    • RJ

      Maybe it’s just me, but I thought the point of the comments section was so that people could give their comments. There’s no prize for best posts, worst posts, most posts, etc.

      It’s for people that want to talk about the Oilers with other folks who want to talk about the Oilers. And many of them are not happy with the trade.

      It makes me wonder: why is there a small core of posters on here that want to silence any complaints? “You’re not in the dressing room so you can’t say anything!” Or “you have to wait years before you can say anything about a trade” seem to be favorites. If you want just cheerleading comments, maybe the team site is for you.

      • I am Batman

        I gave no opinion, my objective was to understand what is it that the trade complainers are pursuing.

        If they are pursuing to complain more, that’s fine, I thought by now they would be done but whatever, complain away. Your time, your keyboard, your liver…

        • RJ

          Ten years out of the playoffs, with all kinds of silly slogans (HOPE!), and silly promises (Mr. Norris Trophy winner); I think it’s perfectly natural to expect the worst. Looch will not be the beast he was in 2011. Injuries will plague the team. Larsson will be Fayne 2.0. JP isn’t ready for prime time. Some UFA the Oilers didn’t sign will start out on fire and the boards will erupt. PC is an idiot for not signing X. We can go on. People aren’t going to stop complaining until they put on a run that has the Oil in a playoff spot.

          Then the switch goes from complaining fanbase to obnoxious fanbase in a heartbeat. “Oilers Domination” and the like.

          I complain like the rest of the folks here. They’ve needed offensive-minded puckmovers since forever, and the five defensive adds: Sekera, Reinhart, Pardy, Clendenning and Larsson don’t bring that element to the team. When they finally bring one in, I’ll probably complain they should have done it sooner. Lol

          Fans are never happy unless they just won.

      • Randaman

        I think the constant questioning of moves made by management & or coaching was warranted before PC & McLellan got here. Ten years of stupid is pretty hard to fix in 15 months.

        Yes, some deals have been head scratchers and we don’t like what the market return was for Hall but constantly complaining is not holding management accountable. It’s just annoying after a while.

        I honestly believe one of the ego’s in the room had to be moved. Ten years of banging your head against the wall without results causes change.

        I for one am glad it’s finally the players paying the price instead of the constant coaching carosel.

        Conner can now take the team to new heights along with some much needed veteran help.

        Go Oil

  • pkam


    Thanks for digging out the stats for Larsson. Now the greedy me want to ask for another favour. Can you do the same for Barrie? And if possible, include the zone start as well.

  • O.C.

    Forwards come into there own 3 years before D Men. Larsson IS a top 4. He could remain there. He could be Nick Lidstrom. Wth knows?

    But, Larrson didn’t say “I’m the equal to Taylor Hall”. He’s not the concern, at all, if there is a concern.

    In two years we should look at this. 3 questions will be…

    Are the Oil better off than they were?

    Was the trade worth it?

    Was the cap space created to add Milan worth it?

  • Hockeyfan

    What did you guys think about Schenn signing? He is actually very comparable to Adam. Chia got so ripped in that deal, it’s too bad that keeps happening eh? Maybe Adam can put up 25 points for the oil.

    • a lg dubl dubl

      Shenn hasn’t played top 2 min since Toronto, and that’s why he was traded to Philly. Larsson, by eye and stats, can play top 2 min. Imo, Shenn is comparable to Gryba.

      Still wish PC overpaid with Eberle ++ for Larsson instead.

    • Harry2

      This comment removes every shadow of a doubt that you know a single thread about the game of hockey.
      Im speachless. Absolutely incredible ingnorancy. (Is that even a word)

      • Hockeyfan

        Seems to me you the one w/out a clue pal. You guys have convinced yourselves you have a stud dman in Adam and he is anything but. HAHA. You will see soon enough.

        • Cowbell_Feva

          Did Chiarelli lose the trade for Larsson. Yeah, but he also replaced that so called “stud” with a brute force with some offensive ability that will be wearing #27…. AND added a guy who actually knows how to play defense. Chiarelli is looking at making his team better, and freed up ~$2 million in the trade to help in other areas.

          I’m hoping he isn’t done yet. A guy like Tyson Barrie would instantly make us a playoff team. Not sure what it would take to get him, but the blueline would instantly look better.

          I for one, will enjoy watching Lucic powder these cupcakes in Cowtown and pop a few goals, rather than watch Fallsy get pushed around and tuck tail and run back to the bench to smash a stick or throw a water bottle. The Oilers, like the Hall trade or not, are a much heavier and more feared team today than they were prior to acquiring Larsson. That counts in the West.

          • Hockeyfan

            You’re joking right? A slow brute, getting slower penalty machine you mean? Get your penalty kill ready, you are gonna need it with all those “elite offensive talent tough guys” you got now. Fallsy? HAHA. Trade your best average guy and then insult him? HAHA. No wonder your team are perennial basement dwellers.

          • Cowbell_Feva

            The only joke is a Flames fan thinking they are cup contenders year in year out and look north to say how bad the Oilers have been, when your team has been marginally better, but still brutal.

            The difference is we have a generational talent with offensive talent all over our top 9 AND added size and grit. Lucic is 28, not 38. I’ll gladly take him. 29 other teams wanted him. He chose Edmonton. So did the #1 college prospect in Caggulia. The hockey world is seeing that the Oilers are a piece or 2 away from being true contenders and they are young. Of course a Flames fan is slow to pick up on this.

            I was never a Hall fan. Ever. Put up points but also turned over pucks and fell down twice a shift. Zero hockey IQ. A slow nugget like Sarich just about killed him. I was glad he left to address weaknesses in other areas. We are a better team today because of it.

            You keep cheering for Calgary. I’ll keep cheering for Edmonton.

        • Harry2

          Its funny how someone can contribute to a comment section for weeks months or even years and all his credibility is erased with a complete assinine comment auch as “L. Schenn = Adam Larsson”.

          Shockingly ignorant. From now on any comment you make is judged with the previous statement in mind.

          I would expect that kind of garbage from a Canuck fan.

  • OilersGM

    Chiarelli is an idiot, so all the Hall fans me included have to know that idiots will make dumb moves…. And if you don’t like it chew on it and that’s me being polite….