84

THE “C”: MORE THAN MEETS THE EYE

Based on the emotion, conversation and amount of articles I’ve seen since Wanye wrote Sam Gagner will be the Edmonton’s 14th Captain; it is obvious hockey fans are getting restless. The season unofficially begins next week with rookie camp, while thankfully main camp is less than two weeks away, so the focus can go back…

89

The Captaincy: There’s No Rush

Thanks to our own Wanye Gretz, everybody’s talking about who the Edmonton Oilers’ next captain should be. Should it be one of the team’s young stars? Should it be Sam Gagner? Should it be a veteran like Andrew Ference? I can’t help thinking there’s no rush to make a decision.

17

A DOWN YEAR FOR FRESHMAN?

After an exceptional three season run of impact rookies on their way to being impact NHLers, the cupboard is decidedly bare for Oiler rookies this season. Or is it?

114

Taylor Hall, Olympian

No less an authority than the TSN panel has predicted that the Edmonton Oilers best player, Taylor Hall, will be sitting at home watching the Olympic games rather than representing Canada in Sochi. Here’s why they’re wrong.

25

DEVELOPING MORE SKILL…

Developing skill is one of the main objectives in hockey, and it should be the second most important factor for minor hockey associations. Ensuring the kids are having fun should be the first objective of every minor hockey parent, coach and association. Before we get to the Oilers signing of Linus Omark, let’s look at…

33

GET GOOD PLAYERS

The Edmonton Oilers cut ties with a pretty talented hockey player this morning, I’d call it an unforced error. The sun will come up tomorrow, but I would suggest that it’s generally a poor idea to throw away 21-year old wingers who score at a point-per-game clip in the AHL–no matter their size.

52

MONEY TALKS AND KIDS WILL WALK

Toni Rajala wasn’t going to get a one-way contract from the Edmonton Oilers any time soon despite coming off a fine season with the Oklahoma City Barons of the AHL, so he’s headed back to Europe because he can make more money there than he can toiling in the minors here.

32

STACK ‘EM, PACK ‘EM AND RACK ‘EM

  I had a fascinating conversation with a buddy yesterday. The basic thrust went like this: buddy suggested that part of the development problem in Edmonton for the forward prospects was lack of room with the big club. He suggested that Teemu Hartikainen and Linus Omark would still be here if there were fewer Hall’s,…

37

THE DETROIT MODEL

  During the 2010-11 season, the Detroit Red Wings employed 37 players with their AHL club (Grand Rapids). It’s interesting to look at the makeup of those 35 players–prospects, AHL veterans–suspects–and compare that group to the bunch Edmonton sent to Oklahoma City same year. Does it offer us some clues about how Detroit develops their…

46

NHLE SUMMER 2013: RED HOT RAJALA

  Since 2010, the Edmonton Oilers have been graduating exceptional offensive talents to the NHL. Gabriel Desjardins’ NHLE has been a guide for those seasons, and has predicted future performance accurately. And not only Hall and Nuge and Yak, but also Eberle and Paajarvi and Omark too. The equivalency has a new favorite, young Finn…

88

Trade for Corey Potter!

It’s a rough time to be Corey Potter. The Edmonton Oilers have six other defencemen on one-way contracts, and three other guys on two-way deals who will (Justin Schultz), will likely (Anton Belov) and might (Oscar Klefbom) make the team out of training camp. But there is good news. While the writing may be on…