Dollars and cents, or should I say sense, are the only things standing between Ken Holland getting his new head coach. Dave Tippett is clearly the man he wants and TSN’s Darren Dreger told me on The Nielson Show this morning that he believes Holland and Tippett are meeting in British Columbia today to try and get a deal done. I’d be surprised if the Oilers can’t put together an offer that financially makes sense for Tippett.
I’ve seen some concern from Oilers fans online about Tippett’s old school approach to coaching and how it may impact the offensive numbers of Connor McDavid.
I’ve gone back through Tippett’s years as a head coach in Dallas and Arizona to find the top ten offensive seasons for his top end guys. As you will see below several players had their best offensive years under Tippett.
MIKE MODANO (02-03) – 85 POINTS
I think most of you would say that’s not very impressive but it was actually the third-best offensive season of Modano’s career. He put up 93 points in back to back seasons in the early ’90s but didn’t hit the 85-point mark again until 02-03. Zubov was second on the team in scoring that season with 55 points.
MIKE RIBEIRO (07-08) – 83 POINTS
Ribeiro, as you will see, put up a couple of very good offensive seasons under Tippett. This 83-point campaign was actually a career high for Ribeiro who I think many of us would describe as the type of player Tippett may not be a fan of.
MIKE RIBEIRO (08-09) – 78 POINTS
This wrapped up the best two-season stretch of Ribeiro’s career. The previous season Ribeiro connected well with Brenden Morrow but the burly power forward played just 15 games in 2008. Loui Eriksson finished second in scoring on the Stars in 08-09 but was still 15 points behind Ribeiro.
MIKE MODANO (05-06) – 77 POINTS
Modano only appears on this list twice and in 2005-2006 he certainly had a little bit of help. The Stars had three players hit the 70-point mark in the first season after the lockout. Arnott had 76 and Zubov finished with 71 points that season.
RAY WHITNEY (11-12) – 77 POINTS
Whitney is the first member of the Coyotes to find a place on this list. The 77 points were the second highest total of Whitney’s career and he also managed to do this in his 19th NHL season. If a 39-year old Ray Whitney can put up 77 points under Tippett I don’t think anyone should be too concerned about McDavid and Draisaitl.
JASON ARNOTT (05-06) – 76 POINTS
This was by far Arnott’s best offensive season under Tippett and would also end up being the most productive offensive season of the power forward’s career. Arnott turned his 76-point season into a five year UFA deal with the Nashville Predators but would only finish with more than 56 points one more time in his career.
BRENDAN MORROW (07-08) – 74 POINTS
Morrow was clearly part of a one-two punch with Ribeiro during the 2007 season. Morrow finished with a career-high 74 points and scored 32 goals, a goal total that he would top only once during his career.
SERGEI ZUBOV (05-06) – 71 POINTS
The most impressive thing about this season for Sergei Zubov is that he put up 71 points at the age of 36. Zubov put up 89 points with the Cup winning Rangers in 1994 and then didn’t hit the 70-point plateau again until 12 years later. Nicklas Lidstrom was the only defenseman to have more points than Zubov in 05-06.
BILL GUERIN (03-04) – 69 POINTS (…nice)
Guerin led the Stars in scoring with 69 points during the 2003-2004 season. This was Tippett’s second season with the Stars and like many of the other players on this list it ended up being Guerin’s career high for points in a season.
RADIM VRBATA (11-12) 62 POINTS
Vrbata connected very well with Whitney during the 2011 season. He scored a career-best 35 goals and finished with 62 points. The Coyotes stunned everyone during the 2012 playoffs making it to the Western Conference Final.
I know many people are down on Tippett simply because of his struggles with the Coyotes, but think about this for a second. In four of his final five seasons with the Coyotes, the team’s leading scorer was a defenceman — Keith Yandle twice and Oliver Ekman-Larsson twice. Tippett literally had nothing to work with offensively; that won’t be the case here in Edmonton.