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Photo Credit: Tom Kostiuk

Monday Mailbag – First thoughts on the Strome for Spooner trade?

Welcome, friends, to yet another edition of the Monday Mailbag. It’s the weekly series where our panel of writers gives you a little bit of wisdom and insight into everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the Edmonton Oilers. As always, this feature depends on you guys so I need you to submit your questions. If you have something you’d like to know you can always email me, or DM me on Twitter. With that out of the way, it’s time to learn something. Enjoy.

Mar 29, 2018; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Edmonton Oilers forward Ryan Strome (18) warms up against the Vancouver Canucks Rogers Arena. Mandatory Credit: Anne-Marie Sorvin-USA TODAY Sports

1) James asks – First thoughts on the Ryan Strome for Ryan Spooner trade? Why do you think Chiarelli pulled the trigger on the deal now?

Robin Brownlee:

It’s one under-achiever for another. Why? Chiarelli knows Spooner, drafted him in Boston. Probably thinks there’s more there than what he’s been showing.

Jason Gregor:

Adds someone with more potential offensive punch and who is quicker. He wanted more secondary scoring, and more speed.

Matt Henderson:

I think Spooner has had more success offensively but at the expense of possession. Still, he hadn’t had a great goal share the last few seasons. I think Chia pulled the trigger because his job is on the line and he can’t afford to sit back and watch the season go down the drain.

Tyler Yaremchuk:

I don’t think we can say that there was an immediate winner or loser in this deal. The Oilers swapped out a struggling, defensively sound forward for a struggling, offensively minded forward. Time will tell. As for why the deal got done now, I would imagine the Rangers ran out of patience with Spooner. I can’t imagine the Oilers were actively shopping Strome.

Chris Pagnani:

It won’t change much. Chiarelli’s looking for more scoring and counting on an unproven player to replace Strome. It’s not a terrible bet, Strome had 2 points on the season, but relying on rookies is something the Oilers have done again and again with poor results. Chiarelli’s trying to spark something. Their start isn’t bad but the recent stretch has taken the shine off the first month of the season.

Chris the Intern:

I don’t hate it. I’m glad Chia got the Rangers to retain some salary. It’s more of a change of scenery for both guys and I wish the best for Strome in New York.

Baggedmilk:

I was surprised to be honest. Despite the lack of offence, I didn’t think Strome was hurting the team so I was surprised to see Chiarelli move on from him so quickly. I’ll wait and see how how it plays out for a bit, but for now it seems like a wash to me.

Feb 25, 2018; Anaheim, CA, USA; Edmonton Oilers center Ryan Strome (18) celebrates with teammates after scoring a goal against the Anaheim Ducks the third period of an NHL hockey game at Honda Center. The Oilers defeated the Ducks 6-5 in a shootout. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

2) Oilers fan in Van asks – I’m concerned with the asset management side of the Strome/Spooner trade. What do you think about Peter Chiarelli moving on from Ryan Strome only 16 months after he was the sole return for Jordan Eberle?

Robin Brownlee:

Interesting question. Fans didn’t think Eberle was much of an asset when they were screaming that he was a soft player with no jam after his no-show in the playoffs a couple of years ago. He had to go. Dump him. Remember? The real negative in that trade was Chiarelli didn’t use the cap space he gained to do anything. I don’t mind the move for Spooner, but before we talk about “asset management,” we need to see if he shows more than Strome did.

Jason Gregor:

I wouldn’t worry about Eberle trade. They lost that trade. It was apparent the day trade was made in my eyes. So you move on. I see no reason to keep Strome around only because he was traded for Eberle. They felt Spooner could help them more today, so I see no issue with making the trade. Strome was put in the role to be third line C…He was never going to be a goal scoring RW. I don’t think they acquired him to be that.

Matt Henderson:

Peter Chiarelli is the GM of the Oilers. Asset management has been a problem since his first ever draft day with the organization. Eberle for Strome was the big downgrade. Strome for Spooner is a minor downgrade by comparison. The 16 month thing is only surprising in that anyone in the organization is capable of admitting a mistake at all, even IF it took 1.33 years.

Tyler Yaremchuk:

I think his poor asset management is shining through. People can sit around and talk about Eberle’s cap hit and all that, but the point is that he dealt an asset when it’s value was at its lowest points. It’s becoming a regular thing. The Strome for Spooner deal isn’t horrible, but big picture, it’s another example of Chiarelli’s lack of ability to win big moves.

Chris Pagnani:

The spin was the Eberle trade was a ‘salary dump’, although the Oilers had a ridiculously amount of cap space all last season and extended Kris Russell to a bad contract almost immediately after trading Eberle. It’s bad asset management. Neither Strome or Spooner are close to Eberle. The Bruins wanted to dump Spooner in the Rick Nash trade last year and the Rangers wanted to do the same after he couldn’t replicate his 20-game hot streak. Looks like another questionable trade.

Chris the Intern:

Yeah this trade proves of awful asset managment by Chiarelli… but this is what we kind of knew already. Chia’s making this trade to make-up for an already bad trade and it was only bound to happen sooner or later.

Baggedmilk:

I think it’s embarrassing that he’s already traded away the only return he got for Jordan Eberle. Say what you will about Ebs, the guy scores 25+ goals per year and that’s a skill that the Oilers desperately need right now and to send Ryan Strome out this quickly is yet another blemish on Chiarelli’s report card. How the guy still has a job is beyond me.

3) Clay asks – I don’t understand why the Oilers felt the need to trade Strome for Spooner. It’s another one of those trades where I can’t even begin to understand what Chiarelli is doing and it makes me wonder why a lot of fans are on the same page but the organization is not. How would you rate Chiarelli’s time in Edmonton on his 1) trades, 2) signings, and 3) in-season adjustments?

Robin Brownlee:

Look at the team Chiarelli inherited and the team he has now. It’s a fail across the board, particularly in off-season moves. We’ve seen decent returns from some of the less significant transactions but no payoff for the bigger ones — Hall for Larsson, Eberle for Strome etc.

Jason Gregor:

I’d give him a C-. His main issue was Reinhart trade because they have nothing to show for it and it cost them two high draft picks. The Hall trade is a close second. He has done better in smaller type trades getting Maroon, Kassian, Marody and Talbot for very little. His small signings have been okay, but the big ticket ones have not paid off.

Matt Henderson:

Trades – 5/5 Milburys
Signings – 4/5 Snows
In-Season Adjustments – 4/5 Tambellinis
Overall I would call Chiarelli’s tenure here an unmitigated disaster that has all but ensured McDavid’s career won’t have a chance to reach its potential for years. Pretty impressive.

Tyler Yaremchuk:

I can understand why they did the deal to some degree. Both players are struggling and could benefit from a change of scenery. Remember, Chiarelli and Keith Gretzky drafted Spooner in Boston, so they’re obviously familiar with the player. It’s a gamble, like any trade, but given that they know the player pretty well, I think it’s a calculated move. Maybe they can find a way to turn Spooner into a consistent offensive producer, which Strome was not.

Chris Pagnani:

Chiarelli’s trying to add scoring because the Oilers can’t score without Connor McDavid on the ice. I rate Chiarelli’s time as Edmonton GM incredibly poorly. Edmonton lives and dies with McDavid/Leon Draisaitl/Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, three players Chiarelli didn’t acquire. The defence is mediocre and Chiarelli’s additions came at either extreme prices via trade (Taylor Hall) or signing (4×4 for Russell). He’s had some decent moves. Patrick Maroon was a nice add. Cam Talbot’s had a couple strong seasons for Edmonton. Still, this is the fourth season of Connor McDavid’s career and they’re not a guarantee for the playoffs in a terrible division. The expectations should be higher and Chiarelli’s failed to add meaningful support around McDavid.

Chris the Intern:

I would rate all three of those equally bad and they’re all tied together. He’s forced to make bad signings to make up for bad trades, and vice versa. His tenure as the Oilers GM is running out.

Baggedmilk:

Despite winning a Stanley Cup, Peter Chiarelli will go down as one of the worst GM’s ever for his time here. He was gifted a generational talent and has done nothing with it outside of the one season. And don’t give me the, ‘yeah but he won a Cup so there’ argument because so did Jay Feaster and where is that dude now?

Sep 23, 2018; Winnipeg, Manitoba, CAN; Edmonton Oilers right wing Kailer Yamamoto (56) celebrates his first period goal against Winnipeg Jets at Bell MTS Place. Mandatory Credit: James Carey Lauder-USA TODAY Sports

4) Francis asks – How long do you think Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto will be in Bakersfield for and who do you think gets recalled first?=

Robin Brownlee:

No idea. Leave them there. Let them play, which is actually finally happening at the AHL level under Jay Woodcroft. Neither one is going to be a difference maker at the NHL level right now.

Jason Gregor:

They should stay there until they are playing consistently every night. No need to rush them back. I love the fact Puljujarvi showed some fire and dropped the mitts with Corey Tropp on Friday night. He skated well, had four shots and was engaged in the game. Good for him. He added a goal and an assist in his second game and looked like he was having fun. If one comes up first it has to be Puljujarvi. Yamamoto isn’t ready to contribute in NHL.

Matt Henderson:

I say Jesse Puljujarvi gets back first. Also I hope they both stay in the AHL for almost the whole year.

Tyler Yaremchuk:

I would say they’ll be in Bakersfield until at least the new year. Even if they go and rip things up for a few weeks, I think their stay in California should be an extended one. As far as who should get recalled first, I think that will be determined 100% by their level of play.

Chris Pagnani:

I could see one of them called up after a point-per-game run of 15-20 games. My guess is Yamamoto. McLellan hasn’t trusted Puljujarvi and barring a coaching change they’ll rely on Yamamoto if both have success in Bakersfield.

Chris the Intern:

Honestly i feel like they’ll both get recalled together at the same time. My guess is after Christmas we’ll see them get called up, however if things continue to go badly here we might see them sooner.

Baggedmilk:

I hope they stay down for the rest of the year, to be honest. The Oilers need to develop their skilled prospects correctly and that starts with making sure they’re playing in the league that best suits their current level. Right now, that’s the AHL for both of those guys.

Mar 13, 2018; Calgary, Alberta, CAN; Calgary Flames defenseman Travis Hamonic (24) fights with Edmonton Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse (25) during the first period at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mandatory Credit: Candice Ward-USA TODAY Sports

5) Joshua asks – The Oilers are going into a run of Pacific Division games where they play against divisional opponents in seven of the next eight games and I’m wondering what record would you like to see them come out of it with?

Robin Brownlee:

Don’t have a number I’d like. With the way the Oilers coughed up leads against Calgary and Vegas this weekend heading onto the road, they’ll do well to win three games during the rest of the stretch.

Jason Gregor:

Before the weekend I thought they needed to go 5-2-1…Which means they need to go 5-0-1 in the next six, and that seems highly unlikely considering they are 1-6 in their last seven. Anaheim, LA and Vegas are not great teams. If you can beat Nashville, Washington, Winnipeg and Boston the Oilers should be able to defeat their Pacific foes. They better wake up this week.

Matt Henderson:

It’s not off to a good start. 5-2 record against the Pacific would make me happy.

Tyler Yaremchuk:

They should beat LA twice and I would like to see them get points in at least three of the other five. Anything worse than say 3-3-1 and I think we could see some jobs lost, but I think it’s entirely possible that they go 5-2-0 as well. The Pacific has been shaky this season and the Oilers traditionally have played well within their own division. The potential is there for this to be a very successful stretch.

Chris Pagnani:

I don’t think you can put any number on it. They came out of a brutal start pretty well and stumbled during a time that should have been much easier.

Chris the Intern:

My initial guess was 6-1, but we’re already 0-2 so that shows how much I know…

Baggedmilk:

They need at least five wins. Anything less will be disappointing.

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    • Mr. McDavid

      Jason Greagor …. and any one else
      Dustin and the rest of Today’s roundtable . Can you stop bringing up
      the Reinhart trade . Who did Vagas
      take from our lineup . Reinhart!
      So out GM did not loss an assest
      from the expansion draft.
      enough

  • camdog

    Strome liked in the room by the players. I can’t see the players being happy with the coaches/GM over the mess they just created. When he was on the ice the puck stayed out of our net. How soon we forgot RNH’s offence was drying up when he was the guy getting the tough zone match ups. With Strome we had depth at centre and it allowed RNH to focus on scoring more. This move essentially neuters RnH’s Offence. From three offensive threats the Oilers just went to 2, from depth at centre to no depth at centre.

    • ziyan94

      The old guys at the newspapers won’t do a thing, they’re buddies with the Oilers brass and Old Boys Club so they’ve gotten used to being paid to shut up.

  • CTP66

    Not sure how anyone can trust Chiarelli to get out of the mess Chiarelli put them in. Will he become desperate and make (another) trade he loses, in an attempt to save his job? Or turf McLellan to save himself? Are they both close to being fired? And what does the organization do to replace them…promote Gulutzan and K. Gretzky, or go outside the organization? Or maybe Lowe and MacT back in charge ;)?

      • CTP66

        Lowe/MacT was sarcastic. They should have been long gone from the organization, when the partial purge happened. I get the feeling they both have their noses in on the hockey side, giving their “advice” to Chiarelli.

        • Spydyr

          I have always thought that Lowe still holds a high position in the organization. He was just moved behind the scenes and replaced with Bob Nicholson , his buddy from Hockey Canada, as the public face of the organization after the famous six rings two – tired fans press conference.

          From the Reinhart trade to today it appears not much has changed within the “Oilers Braintrust”. It is the same Gong Show in management.

  • 18% body fat

    So lets recap how we got here.

    1. Chiarelli is hired because of MacT inability to find NHL defensemen

    2. Chia keeps the old boys club in hockey ops

    3. Barzal (chabot, connor, koneckny, boesser) and Carlo (aho) were traded for For MacT version of an nhl defenseman, that ended up being at best a bottom line AHL forward, major depth lost in this trade, assets lost

    4. Puljijarvi drops to edmonton leading Chia to believe a raw young 18 year old can replace taylor hall

    5. Chia smells lucic jock when he is in edmonton for a visit. Despite a brand new building, training equipment and the promise of playing alongside a generation talent, chia has to offer the same amount of money and an additional year to sign the player. Chia did not do any research and see that this type of player production and usefulness falls off at this point in his career. Chia goes with what he is comfortable with. Cap space assets lost.

    6. Hall is traded for Larsson, PUKE. Larsson is good bug again not a top 2 type of defeceman in this days NHL. Assets lost.

    7. Matt benning signed (might be out of order) Chia goes again what he is comortable with. Not much harm in this signing, most harm is from over usage by the coach.

    8. Kris russel signed. Played to his contract year one. Proves that replacement level players are available in september. Resigned for bad contract. Cap assets wasted. Eberle casualty

    9. Eberle traded for strome, no issue her with strome. Never given the opportunity to replace the player he was brought in for. Jordan was a cap casuality of bad signing of russel. Replacement D at 1M would have bought chia more time on the eberle trade of not needed to be done. hell the cap space was there the whole next years. Assets wasted

    10. Maroon traded, better player better contract than lucic. casuality of lucic and russel contract. seem to here that a lot. Rumour is more was offered, but chia held out too long. asset wasted

    11. JP agent and oilers agree he will play 40 nhl games in rookie year. He can than burn a contract year and make money before he agrees to go to ahl. Oilers get him over from europe.
    Development hindered and stalled.

    12. Connor Mcdavid contract done ahead of draisaitl. We all know that 97s contract needed to be done. But I wonder if Leon is first if they save 1M per here. Cap assets wasted.

    13. Caggulia signs for 500k more than what he should have been paid. Yes this is not that big of a deal but it is a trend with chia. He has his boys and doesnt care what it cost to get them. Cap assets wasted.

    14. strome traded for spooner, nothing really wrong here, but some questions? chia goes again with what he is comortable or knows. the problem is other than drafting he doesnt seem to know anything. Strome was struggling but does he not research or watch the games? yes he struggle, but he was carrying around lucic, and the rotating in and out player. how do you get anything going with that. He was your shut down center, and considering linemates did ok. He stopped the bleading of scoring chances against lucic.

    15. alex chaison is third in goals for. Again goes to show you that bottom line or pair d, are replacement level, no need for benning, caggulia or russel to make what they make, cap space assets wasted

    16. ryan spooners questionable D is on show against calgary.

    So here we are. no cap space and no way to free it up unless a useful piece is traded. No assets other than prospects who will not fetch a return available, or you use first, which the oilers cant an shouldnt do until they are ready to compete. However how does this team get out of mediocracy. The contracts they need to trade cant be.

    They need do the impossible and find a way to drop lucic, and russel and wisely use the cap space to find a 2nd RHD and minimum 1 solid winger.

    Rant over, sigh. Sorry Connor

  • Serious Gord

    1. Yet again a deal with an organization and player chia and Co are familiar with. Did they talk to anyone else.

    Spooner was -2 and -2 in his first two games. Not a good start.

    2. Viewed in context – the team seems to be weaker/less promising today that it did when that trade happened Chia is on failing arc.

    3. The team’s future looks far bleaker today than three years ago. That’s a failure – that’s an F.

  • Serious Gord

    4. They should stay down there until the oil get on a winning trajectory. So next season at the earliest.

    5. Mathematically barring a miraculous turn they are now almost certainly out of the playoffs already. A sweep could change that. Maybe.

    Anyone confident they will sweep? Anyone?

    • ed from edmonton

      A more interesting question than rehashing the Strome trade 3 times is how long do you think TMAc will remain as coach, Same question for PC. If the Oil go 0 for 3 in Cali TMAc will be sacrificed before the end of the Month.

    • tealyn

      What should he do? Address the elephant in the room? What do we do to save McDavid from this organization? Or even better, what do we do to save the NHL Edmonton? the place where 1st pick overall rookies go to die. It was no accident that Connor looked unhappy when picked by Edmonton, this organization is rotten to the core.

  • Bigdaddypuck

    I’m not part of the old boy conspiracy therory with this team. What would booting MacT from organization achieve towards us winning the last couple games. But I feel the coach can’t get the team prepared properly with these blown losses over the weekend. Why isn’t the coaches performance being broughy up by the media more is my question.

  • hagar

    The Reinhart trade is a perfect example of the old powers that be still shining through. Why would Pete give so much for him? Only three fools i can think of that would mastermind that idea.
    Same old power, same old results.

    • btrain

      Chia was in the big boy chair, the responsibility is on him. Its not like he was completely unfamiliar with the player and therefore dependent on the voices around him. If he is a competent GM, he oversees everything and understands the value of the picks he is giving up. If he takes the advice of others, than its still his choice to do that. End of story.

  • hagar

    Re-building isn’t a strategie for the oilers, its a way of life.
    You would think by now we could at least be a good rebuild team, but pretty well every team this year that is rebuilding and all sad about it, is doing better. Its quite amazing they can accomplish this much failure over and over.

  • TKB2677

    I don’t have too much of a problem with the Strome trade. The Oilers need more scoring and speed. Strome isn’t the best skater and he was giving them ZERO offense. With the league getting faster, I seriously wonder if that was the reason Strome was giving you nothing offensively was he’s not fast enough. The whole notion of “the Oilers traded a guy they had contract control of”.I do not understand why anyone would use that as negative against the trade. Having contract control over a player who isn’t very good does what for you exactly? Strome should be experienced enough and have enough skill that being a OK 3rd line center shouldn’t be a problem. But it’s a problem. He can’t do it. So when his contract comes up and you as a team have “control” of him, you have a player who you have to qualify at over 3 mill and he isn’t even a 3rd line player. Why is that a positive?

    Moving forward, I would do this with the lines:

    Spooner – McDavid – Chiasson – Chiasson is the 3rd leading goal scorer on the team. 8 goals in 14 games is outstanding. He’s going. He’s a vet, smart player, has some size and is right handed. Spooner defensively can’t be in your bottom 6. He has speed, offensive ability and skill plus if you have him with McDavid, McDavid should control the puck so it should help with his defensively liabilities.

    Nuge – Leon – Rattie : First of all, they do not have enough offensive guys to load up Leon with Connor. Secondly, as good as Nuge has been this year points wise, as soon as he is off McDavid’s line, he scores squat and he only has 4 goals. I do not think he is good enough to bring offense to the second line.

    Lucic – Khaira – Caggulia – Marody is not ready to be in the NHL as a 3rd line center. Caggulia brings more speed and plays with some jam. Maybe being on a bigger line will make him play hard. As soon as Rieder is ready, you put him in Caggulia’s spot.

    Marody/Russell – Brodziak – Kassian – If there is a way to get rid of Kassian for another 4th liner who is hopefully cheaper, freaking do it. If you can only get a pick for Kassian, freaking do it. He’s just not worth the money.

    I would also call up Upshall and ask him how his knee is doing. They could use a guy who brings some more vet smarts, some reliable play and a little give a crap.

  • Hemmercules

    Love all of Hendersons answers. Saltiness to the max.

    What can you even say about these guys anymore? This team is one Mcdavid injury away from finishing in the basement. They looked so good beating all those awesome teams there a couple weeks back and now its drifting into being eliminated by December again.

    Step 1 is to Bench Talbot.

  • Oscar

    Darryl Katz has watched Chiarelli flush Hall, Eberle, a first rounder (Barzal), and the duration of Connor McDavid’s Entry Level Contract down the toilet for nothing. This team still looks for long term solutions on the wing, a top pairing defender who can play PP minutes and a third line centre who isn’t making $8.5 million a season. He has added Talbot to the list of core players and we might be generous and add Larsson to that, but he isn’t a cornerstone player, really. So what did Edmonton really get for all the assets that went out the door?

    • tealyn

      You know what Katz has watched, well I tell you, it isn’t hockey, can you imagine how embarrassing it would be to be the owner of the Edmonton Oilers with all those 1st overall picks, the worlds best player. If Katz is watching any of this garbage that he has allowed to continue then I have less respect for him than I already do which is absolutely none, he held us hostage so we could build his arena all for his pocket book, does he act like an owner who gives a crap answer: no, $ is Katz’s language

      • BobbyCanuck

        I’ll say it before and I’ll say it again, nothing changes as long as the barn is sold out, and there is a waiting list for season tickets…nothing changes

        • Glencontrolurstik

          First rule of business is to satisfy the customer.
          The measure of that with a hockey team is, are they filling the seats?
          Done & Done… End of story…
          Stop going to games, then & only then, will changes be made….

  • Prairiechicken

    Crazy frustrating. But I’m trying to not care. And doing a reasonably good job of it.
    Lots of questionable moves. But the one that still blows my mind is the Reinhart trade. Not so much because of the assets exchanged … but because they admitted they hadn’t watched him since he was an Oil King. A years worth of evidence and data of him playing as a professional regarding a massive trade you’re making you choose to absolutely ignore. Unbelievably incompetent. I bet they hadn’t really studied Spooner the last few years and were just going on how he played when PC was still in Bean town.

  • Glencontrolurstik

    No one has even mentioned Talbot?
    Hey, I noticed something in the Calgary game…
    3rd period, camera zooms in on a helmet-less Talbot on the bench.
    He looks up to the scoreboard & has to SQUINT TO SEE IT???
    WTF, does he need glasses? Get the man an eye exam for gords sake!!!
    He simply is not following the puck anymore, he’s working with anticipation too much…

  • MrBung

    Chia is the worst GM in the NHL. This can’t be repeated enough. He has set this team back and IF they can find competent management and luck they might have a competitive, playoff level team in about 2 to 3 years.

  • Beut

    Does Bob Nicholson watch the team? Has anyone told him about Chiarelli’s moves these past 4 years. I can’t think of any other reason that this is still going on.

  • Rama Lama

    As the saying goes…..when you have friends like PC/TM…….who needs enemies.

    Our coach has showed some glaring faults. He does not have the respect of players, they have essentially tuned him out……I for one am sick and tired of hearing the shallow mantra of, “we got outworked”. This is a standard TM line and it works for low IQ people but not for the informed fan.

    What we see is coach that absolutely refuses to play the “ hot” goaltender and juggles them into oblivion. Same goes with any line from top to bottom…….even players have made comments that this does not give them confidence.

    I think we have gone through enough players that go to other teams and have success…….the writing is on the wall trade PC for a bag of rocks and send TM to the light.

    Enough is enough.

  • When I first saw the Strome-Spooner trade, I thought Spooner would slot in at 3C where Strome is. Then I hear Chiarelli on the radio say “We see him as a winger.” So who do they have as 3C? A very green rookie in Marody. Remember when they tried that with Caggiula? Didn’t work. So they’re trying it again with Marody?

    This is now literally insanity.

  • camdog

    If you need to have Leon and McDavid together, then you slot Strome in with RNH. At least try it. They had the makings of 2 really good lines, in both ends that isn’t going to happen. I like RnH, but I don’t like him 5 by 5 at centre. This was consensus in Oilersnation 3 years ago we all know you can ground and pound a RnH line in corners. Hence he needs wingers that are complete in their own end, when playing with Nudge. I can’t believe we are going back to this, we’ve been here. That’s the worst part going back to something that doesn’t work. And nobody in Edmonton remembers this? Especially those that get payed to cover the team.

  • btrain

    o me, Lucic was the dagger above all others that keeps on digging deeper. Having a deal with Lucic convinced Chia to move Hall. The short term gain with a playoff appearance gave him the confidence to drop Eberle in similar fashion. Let’s rewind the clock pre-Lucic to the 2015/16 roster:

    Notable Forwards: Hall, Drai, Ebs, McDavid, Pouliot, RNH, Purcell, Letestu, Yak, Maroon, Kassian, Khaira, Slepy, Pakirinen, Lander, Pitlick
    Notable D: Sekera, Nurse, Kelfbom, Davidson, Schultz, Oestrele, Hunt,
    Goalies: Talbot, Neilson, Brossoit

    Obviously cap considerations, aging players, performance issues, contract decisions, etc, wouldn’t allow/want this group to stay together to the present season, but I think its safe to say today’s team has more holes in it today than the 15/16 team had. Some of his early moves were great (Sekera, Talbot, Kassian, Maroon) but to have more roster holes today is a clear indication of how poorly this GM has done since his first season on the job.

    If Demers is signed instead of Lucic, I think this team has a much different trajectory towards long term success, instead of the one off playoff appearance that they did enjoy. An appearance that may very well have been achieved anyway with Hall and Demers in the lineup instead of Lucic and Larsson. Looking back, a roster with such rich inheritance at wing, an offensive right handed Dman, a decent goal tending group, its hard to imagine this team currently lacks scoring depth at wing, has no offensive threat from the point, and that they signed Neilson’s twin for 2.5 mill.

    Yet again, sad time to be an Oilers fan. I almost hope for another lost season so we can move on from this GM who has so aggressively narrowed the window of success for this organization and put his coaching staff in the cross hairs with him.

    • Ohlyr

      I saw an Oilers fan after the game against Vegas. He repeatedly rolled his Oilers Jersey into a ball and threw it to the floor, he repeated this 5-6 times??
      I asked him “What R U doing”….He said “It’s my Talbot Jersey…I’m waiting for it to Bounce Back”.