GDB 42.0: PLAYING FOR PRIDE

Jason Gregor
April 16 2013 12:23PM

The Oilers won't reach their goal of making the playoffs. For them it sucks. They want to win, and missing the playoffs for the 7th consecutive season must feel like a swift kick to the junk. However, the Oilers need to suck it up and compete in their final seven games.

If they don't, then new genernal manager Craig MacTavish will have a much more difficult job trying to re-shape his team. If the Oilers don't have enough competitive players, it doesn't matter how much skill, speed or size they assemble. You can't win if you aren't willing to match the intensity, desperation and desire of the opposition.

"We basically lost to the &*(&*(#@$% Abbotsford Heat last game...We didn't just lose, we got our ass kicked," an Oiler player told me yesterday. He was embarrassed by his team's performance and said the next seven games guys have to show each other they care. He said it off the record, so I can't attribute it to him, but he was fuming which surprised me since I've never seen him that amped up.

We'll see if his teammates feel the same as him when they face the Minnesota Wild.

The Wild are in 6th place, one point up on St. Louis and two up on Detroit and Columbus. A month ago they looked like a lock to make the playoffs, but they are 3-6-1 in their last 10. They aren't playing very well down the stretch and the young Oilers have an opportunity to share their non-playoff disappointment with another Northwest division foe.

LINEUP

The Oilers recalled Teemu Hartikainen and Anton Lander yesterday and both will be in the lineup tonight. I'd have thrown Hartikainen beside RNH and Eberle and put Hall with Gagner and Yakupov, because the top line hasn't scored a goal in five games, so switch it up.

Kreuger will switch up his lines:

Hall/Gagner/Yakupov
Paajarvi/RNH/Eberle
Hartikainen/Lander/Horcoff
Brown/Smyth/Petrell

Smid/Petry
N.Schultz/J.Schultz
Fistric/Potter

Dubnyk

At this point you might as well look at many different combos. It is odd seeing Horcoff on the wing and Smyth at centre, but for one game why not. It shouldnt' matter what positions the players play, all 18 skaters must simply play hard and smart.  

QUICK HITS

  • Craig MacTavish will be much more decisive and proactive than Steve Tambellini. I'm not sure if he'll be Paul Holmgren-ish, but he's not going to hesitate to makes some moves. That could be good and bad of course, but Oilers fans will have lots to discuss this off-season. I suspect you will see at least 7 new regulars on the roster next year.
     
  • I'm not surprised MacTavish said he'd make bold moves. I wrote this on March 27th, yet many claimed I was clueless. A bold move doesn't mean shipping out 4th liners, it means moving out a good player and getting a good one in return. It won't be a surprise when MacTavish pulls off a deal, but it will be intriguing to see how many deals he makes.
     
  • If I had to rank the most pressing needs of the Oilers, i'd go with these. 1. A strong veteran shut down D-man who can play 20 minutes. 2. Another puck moving defenceman. 3. One, and ideally two, top-six forwards with strength and size. 4. A third line veteran forward who is physical, can kill penalties and play tough minutes. None of those are easy to find, but that is what this team needs. If Oscar Klefbom makes the team next year, he has to start the season in the third pairing. They can't rely on him to be a top-four. If he plays his way up the ranks, great, but he shouldn't be expected to start there.
     
  • The great part about sports is that we will all interpret comments/quotes differently. Kevin Lowe's comments yesterday regarding "two-types of fans" had many fans irate. He never said he cares or listens to season ticket holders more, he said they communicate with them more, which is true. Ideally, he never should have said "two-different type of fans," because automatically those who aren't season seat holders will feel offended.  You can say he chose the wrong words, but Lowe interacts with fans more than his players, so any suggestion that he doesn't care about fans would be misleading. I actually thought his comment about six Stanley Cup rings would rile people up more than his fan comment. Either way, It made for some excellent debates.
     
  • The Wild are in a battle for the final three playoff spots. They can't afford to take the Oilers lightly, and I suspect they won't. The Wild didn't skate this morning, but Mikko Koivu made it clear that they expect the Oilers to be hungry and ready to show their new GM they are worthy of being part of the team moving forward. It was an interesting take from an opposing player, and I'm curious to see if he is right.

TONIGHT....

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Wild played last night, so the Oilers should have more energy and a heightened urge to impress their new GM. Oilers squeek out a 2-1 win.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Someone will try and make the Clutterbuck/Hall hit a story line. Clutterbuck has only fought twice in the last three seasons, but someone will go with the redemption angle. Clutterbuck loves to hit, and if he takes a few healthy runs at the Oilers none of us should be surprised.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Lander has played 60 NHL games thus far, but he's played 13+ minutes only 9 times. He will play 14 minutes tonight, and he will end his 19-game (dating back to last year) goal-scoring drought in the 2nd period.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#1 Shredder
April 16 2013, 12:33PM
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I'm happy to see the Oilers bring up Lander and Hartikainen. I'd prefer to see Lander in his normal position - centre, with Horcoff centring a line with Smyth. Make Horcoff and Smyth's line the 4th line...that should send a message - it's not benching them, but telling them that they really don't matter.

Love the idea of Hall/Gagner/Yakupov. Yak needs more ice time and Hall has been a good playmaker. Those 2 need more of each other.

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#2 StHenriOilBomb
April 16 2013, 12:34PM
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I sure hope Koivu is right.

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#3 VK63
April 16 2013, 12:36PM
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Brodziak does a championship belt salute to the rexall rafters, points at his junk and smugly mouths.... bag skate this ..... no helmet boy.

Buttercup ends Halls season with a borderline knee, the nutless wonders stand around and watch in mute shock.... courage is mustered up just in time for the post game scrum for the media and indignation reigns supreme.

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#4 HugThePost
April 16 2013, 12:39PM
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Gregor, Thanks for the un-named quote from the oilers player. The inside exposure to the team you have must be really interesting at times.

Have you gotten the sense that the players know they might be shipped out of here and won't be part of good times once they presumably arrive here?

Also, who out of the forward crew would you ship out for depth on D? It seems our strength is at forward (except C), and we need more balance especially on D and the 3rd and 4th lines.

nice work

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#5 positivebrontefan
April 16 2013, 12:40PM
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With the fight that Hall and Yak have showed the last few games it'll be good to see them together. I'm kind of excited to see this actually.

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#6 David
April 16 2013, 12:41PM
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As far as next year . THey need a good back up goalie - Not Habby .

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#7 Bryan in SK
April 16 2013, 12:41PM
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Not sure I want to watch this team "playing for pride" again. They're 5 games too late. I want a playoff race, not a debate about off-season roster moves 2 weeks before the end of the regular season.

While the Oilers are playing for pride tonight, I'll be doing my income taxes, 'cuz at least I have a little hope of getting something out of it.

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#8 vetinari
April 16 2013, 12:43PM
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I wish that the Oilers will pull off a win tonight but look at our lineup... 8 out of the top 9 forwards are still kids and need a note from their mom's to stay up late... we look like, if not are, AHLers next to real hockey players and the Wild need the win. Wild 4 Oilers 2.

Just wait until the end of the month when we play something like 5 games in 7 nights.

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#9 The Funky Chicken Has Left The Building
April 16 2013, 12:50PM
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Oilers lose by 3

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#10 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
April 16 2013, 12:51PM
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I love it!

Let guys that are close to making the show get a few games in.

Let the guys who try the hardest (Hall and Yak) play on the top line.

Let our biggest trade asset (outside of Hall, Yak, RNH, and Ebs) play with the two guys that try the hardest. Make him more of an asset by inflating his points.

And for the love of god, let Whitney ride peacefully into the sunset.

Oh and for the Oilers future, let us compete and lose by 1!

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#11 baggedmilk
April 16 2013, 01:00PM
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For me, I understood what Kevin Lowe was trying to say but his choice of analogy was what lost me. I'm sure if he could take that question again he would have worded things differently.

That being said, I run the Oilers Nation twitter account and it sure is fun to poke the bear.

*hugs Nation Twitter account*

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#12 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 01:04PM
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I'm interested in watching these line combos. Could be good.

I'd like to see these for a game or two before the season's done:

Hall-RNH-Eberle

Rough last five games, which is why I can understand a change for a bit, but they just have too much chemistry with each other.

Paajarvi-Horcoff-Yakupov

Horc's a smart player and the two yutes got some talent. Besides Yak likes to play with his captain. Works for me! lol

Hartikainen-Gagner-Smyth

Grind it out.

Brown-Lander-Jones

Same as above.

Defence: I would just like to see Peckham play.

Off topic, but I feel a need for a trip to South Africa....

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#13 ralph_u
April 16 2013, 01:07PM
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Clutterbuck is RFA this year would like to see him get traded here with Minny up against cap next year.

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#14 Rocket
April 16 2013, 01:14PM
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Gregor wrote:"If I had to rank the most pressing needs of the Oilers, i'd go with these. 1. A strong veteran shut down D-man who can play 20 minutes. 2. Another puck moving defenceman. 3. One, and ideally two, top-six forwards with strength and size. 4. A third line veteran forward who is physical, can kill penalties and play tough minutes. None of those are easy to find, but that is what this team needs. If Oscar Klefbom makes the team next year, he has to start the season in the third pairing. They can't rely on him to be a top-four. If he plays his way up the ranks, great, but he shouldn't be expected to start there."

Agreed on all points.Also, I like that anonymous Oilers quote. Well done.

I think The Oilers lose tonight though & at this point in the season, might as well get a better draft pick right? (sigh)

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#15 Will
April 16 2013, 01:17PM
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I wonder if they see Striet as our puck moving defenseman, and Klefbomb as the shut down defender able to play 20 minutes a night? That's not terrible if Klefbomb can handle it. Hell, anything is better than Whitney.

As for some size in our top 6, that will be interesting to see. I wonder if Ott has talked hi way out of Buffalo yet? I'm sure Jagr will need a new one year contract and a new team to play for. I've heard great things about how he mentors young players. Watching Yak be mentored by one of the greats would be so good for his development.

I think Klefbomb will go all J schutlz and impossibly at least, if not exceed, expectations. But i I could get my wish it would be Yandle on our back end as the new puck moving defenseman, and to pry Cotuier out of Philly for our second line centre.

It is so sad that five games ago we were in. We had 8th. We were playing meaningful games. And then we lost five in a row in truly spectacular fashion. I don't think we should have won every game. But there was little reason we shouldn't have beaten Phoenix and Calgary. Even had we won those two games, we'd still be in the hunt.

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#16 Oiler Al
April 16 2013, 01:19PM
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I watch and have watched a lot of hockey in my life... one aspect I honestly cannot put a handle on is why do teams , espeically the Oilers, who have strong talent in top six come out to play FLAT, game after game... no energey, and more so no urgency to play hard on the puck, follow through with checks, forecheck, and backcheck.... all essential elements of a good hockey club.

Watch teams like Boston, Montreal, even Toronto, Coyotes,, theres many come out of the gate flying and never quit... win or lose. Look at Montreal , they arent overly big or have tons of skil... but look at their game.

Why Can't the Oilers play that way?

I always think its the coaching and practice habits.????

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#17 A-Mc
April 16 2013, 01:19PM
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GOD can we all stop talking about loser Lowe.

Everyone says the same thing and its soooo old already.

lets talk more about those bold moves re: Eberle + 1st for Weber as per Team 1260 this morn.

i figure the oilers will manage 4 wins of the remaining 7 games. Tonight is as good as any to get 1 in the win column, so sure: oilers win tonight.

Win or lose, they better compete for the rest of the season.. i'm tired of watching guys mail it in.

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#19 Minister D-
April 16 2013, 01:20PM
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As the Liverpool kids used to say, "I've got a feeling..." we may be seeing the last of Pajaarvi, Gagner, Schultz the Elder, possibly even Smid, in Oiler silks; add that to the inevitable (one hopes, in one way or another) departures of Jones, Eager, Belanger, Whitney, Hordichuck, the "rights formerly known as Linus Omark" and a slough of underperforming prospects (Pitlick, Hamilton, Teubert, Plante, VDV). I suspect there's going to be some considerable turnover next year. It's due.

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#20 Sloppy Joe
April 16 2013, 01:21PM
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Re Gregor's comments about Lowe ...

I wasn't overly riled up about the 'two tiers of fans'comment.

What got me was that virtually everything that came out of his mouth was either delusional or completely asinine.

I am embarassed as an oiler fan to know that Lowe's comments at the presser were being played on sports channels.

I think that Oilers fans are a pretty insular in some ways, and I don't think that, as a group, we understand the extent to which the rest of the league and their fans view the Oil as totally "Mickey Mouse." We are in a club with the Islanders and the Blue Jackets.

For the most part I though MacT did very well at the presser - but Lowe just plain embarassed himself.

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#21 Rocket
April 16 2013, 01:26PM
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Minister D- wrote:

As the Liverpool kids used to say, "I've got a feeling..." we may be seeing the last of Pajaarvi, Gagner, Schultz the Elder, possibly even Smid, in Oiler silks; add that to the inevitable (one hopes, in one way or another) departures of Jones, Eager, Belanger, Whitney, Hordichuck, the "rights formerly known as Linus Omark" and a slough of underperforming prospects (Pitlick, Hamilton, Teubert, Plante, VDV). I suspect there's going to be some considerable turnover next year. It's due.

I for one hope there is considerable turnover next year. Any underachievers should not really belong this team. The Oilers need players that are tough to play against.#Truculence

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#22 season not played
April 16 2013, 01:26PM
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Pride?!?!?!

It has become fairly obvious that this team has no pride.

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#23 Spydyr
April 16 2013, 01:26PM
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If they played with pride the team would not be where it is now. Too little too late.

Pride has left the building. Only shame remains.

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#24 Ogie Oilthorpe
April 16 2013, 01:29PM
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@A-Mc

I wonder with what MacT likes in a player and referencing Gregor's post overall if it is more likely to see Ebs than Yak get traded in a blockbuster. Yak seems to be more physical and it seems early to assess what calibre of player he will be in two years. My guess is hr will be more similar to the Taylor Hall we have seen this year.

Than fan base would hate to see, I would hate to see it, but I think he is one of the more likely "aggressive" trading pieces along with MPS..

Sorry Wayne

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#25 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 01:32PM
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A-Mc wrote:

GOD can we all stop talking about loser Lowe.

Everyone says the same thing and its soooo old already.

lets talk more about those bold moves re: Eberle + 1st for Weber as per Team 1260 this morn.

i figure the oilers will manage 4 wins of the remaining 7 games. Tonight is as good as any to get 1 in the win column, so sure: oilers win tonight.

Win or lose, they better compete for the rest of the season.. i'm tired of watching guys mail it in.

First, I agree. What's done is done.

Second, this trade is interesting. Ever since Erat wanted out (and of course he signed with Philly) I've been wondering about Weber's train of thought. Could be a Pronger like situation. Without the infidelity. lol

That's the guy the team needs, though. In my opinion.

Win, win? Fills needs for both teams.

I like Eberle, but not as much as Hall, RNH or Yakupov. I wouldn't be disappointed in that trade.

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#26 Will
April 16 2013, 01:33PM
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Rocket wrote:

I for one hope there is considerable turnover next year. Any underachievers should not really belong this team. The Oilers need players that are tough to play against.#Truculence

With so few quality defensemen available in the coming free agency this summer, I really can't see Smid going anywhere. Especially because he plays the exact type of gritty shot blocking game Mac T jerks off over. "Oh ya, look at that shot blocking. Ya sacrifice that body."

You're welcome.

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#27 Ducey
April 16 2013, 01:33PM
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Go Wild!*

* I want Barkov

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#28 Harlie
April 16 2013, 01:36PM
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So what's the over under on MacT packaging this years first in a trade this summer?

I feel a bit sorry for Tambo today now that the smoke has cleared. But only a bit..

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#29 Will
April 16 2013, 01:37PM
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@DigDeepNBleedBlue

I just can't see any team being able to take on Webber's contract. Erat wanting out could also easily have been a team need to dump cap to try and make room for the monster contract Weber has for the next few years. I mean, no one would even take Luongo for their cup run, getting a guy like Weber basically limits any Gm's ability to do anything else. And unlike Nashville, we don't have Rinne, or Trotz. I just don't think getting Weber, for everything the guy brings, would benefit the team going forward.

Having said all that. I'd still probably make this trade.

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#30 Dog Train
April 16 2013, 01:38PM
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Screw the Wild, screw Clutterbuck, screw Heatley even if he is injured. Go Blue Jackets and Red Wings, boo everybody else in the playoff race.

Oilers squeak one out 1-0 on a goal by Brown.

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#31 French Toast Mafia
April 16 2013, 01:39PM
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I really really dislike the idea that Klefbom comes over next year and gets a spot in the top 6.

The Oilers have a problem because they give spots to players instead of having them earn it or prove they are good enough. People get rose colored glasses pulled over their eyes when they see a player that can make the show straight out of camp without ever playing a game in the league. Unfortunately for the Oilers, these players make the team out of camp because they have so few "actual" NHL calibre players on there team.

Guys like Lander, Harti, Kelfbom, and Teubert shouldn't be called up to fill holes because management can't find NHL players to fill out the roster while they develop.

I think it is horrible management to assume a player like Kelfbom (who has never once played hockey in the NHL or AHL and has spent all of this season injured) will be able to come in a play top 6 D.

If he comes over in camp and beats out an ACTUAL NHL defenseman for that position then yes, he has proven he is good enough.

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#32 Will
April 16 2013, 01:40PM
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Ducey wrote:

Go Wild!*

* I want Barkov

Get Barkov, trade Hemsky for bigger, more veteran, less skilled left wing to play on the second line.

Trade Gagner for big stay at home defender to play 20 min a night, pick up Streit as a UFA.

Could this all happen? And if so, is it enough?

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#33 yawto
April 16 2013, 01:41PM
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I'm fan type #2. Funny thing is, during the lockout my stance was that as a non event attending fan, it was the league and players perogative to fight over the 30 dollars in royalty money they make off my merch purchases a year. Could really care that he said that, am well aware that without the 17,000 strong that attend nightly I wouldn't get my Oilers games and thank them for paying the players salaries. Keep it up both sides and just bring me some May Oilers hockey to my TV please.

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#34 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 01:47PM
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@Will

It's a significant cap hit. I agree. But, Weber is Cadilac good, dude!

Drop Whitney's 4mil cap hit and you add just under 4mil more. The defence is upgraded markedly. Cap hit for the D will be 20-23mil for next year. I think that's manageable.

Not sure the whole situation with Erat, but the rumours weren't positive. I do get they are only rumours. Sometimes there is truth there and you gotta wonder what else is going on. The team just looks like it's in disarray right now. Could be ripe for the picking.

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#35 Quicksilver ballet
April 16 2013, 01:49PM
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David wrote:

As far as next year . THey need a good back up goalie - Not Habby .

Habby has virtually the identical numbers/sv% to Dubnyk, there's no difference.

Perhaps it would've been appropriate to claim the Oilers need 2 goaltenders if you're unsatisfied with those type of numbers. Neither of these goaltenders are good enough to get you into the playoffs.

Since Weber can't be moved till mid/late summer, it may not have to involve the Oilers first choice in 2013. How about Eberle, Hemsky and the first in 2014? Throw Omark in the trunk on that deal if they want.

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#36 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 01:50PM
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@French Toast Mafia

Klefbom needs to start in the A and I'm sure he will unless he blows the socks off of the coaching staff at training camp this fall.

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#37 Minister D-
April 16 2013, 01:52PM
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@French Toast Mafia

There seems to be an unspoken consensus among too many fans that Klefbom will simply come in and be a top six guy right away. In countless posts I've come across that speculate on next year's lineup Klefbom is just slotted right in there, fait accompli.

Now, there's no doubt he's a great player and should have a solid career as an Oiler, but he's also had two major injuries in the past two seasons. This year was probably Klefbom's most important development year, and he lost 3/4's of it due to injury. He's only played 11 games in the SEL this year.

I have a strong suspicion that, even if he performs well in camp, putting him in the lineup next year without adequate support (i.e. very soft minutes with a solid veteran beside him) will condemn him to the same fate as Lander, another guy who performed well enough in last year's camp but was WAY over his head as an NHL player. Klefbom is at least a year away.

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#38 DSF
April 16 2013, 01:52PM
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Sloppy Joe wrote:

Re Gregor's comments about Lowe ...

I wasn't overly riled up about the 'two tiers of fans'comment.

What got me was that virtually everything that came out of his mouth was either delusional or completely asinine.

I am embarassed as an oiler fan to know that Lowe's comments at the presser were being played on sports channels.

I think that Oilers fans are a pretty insular in some ways, and I don't think that, as a group, we understand the extent to which the rest of the league and their fans view the Oil as totally "Mickey Mouse." We are in a club with the Islanders and the Blue Jackets.

For the most part I though MacT did very well at the presser - but Lowe just plain embarassed himself.

Playing the " I won all these cups" card was actually much dumber.

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#39 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 01:56PM
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@DSF

Still whining?

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#40 Will
April 16 2013, 01:56PM
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DigDeepNBleedBlue wrote:

It's a significant cap hit. I agree. But, Weber is Cadilac good, dude!

Drop Whitney's 4mil cap hit and you add just under 4mil more. The defence is upgraded markedly. Cap hit for the D will be 20-23mil for next year. I think that's manageable.

Not sure the whole situation with Erat, but the rumours weren't positive. I do get they are only rumours. Sometimes there is truth there and you gotta wonder what else is going on. The team just looks like it's in disarray right now. Could be ripe for the picking.

Do you know if has like a no move, no trade clause? If so I imagine some of the big name teams with loads of cap space would be his first option above the Oilers.

If it's up to the Predators, however, I don't know. I mean they went through a lot to keep a player that obviously didn't want to play there since he singed the offer sheet to Philly.

I kind of think Nashville knows that if Weber goes, so does their franchise. I think they, like us, are trying to add without subtracting.

Plus as great as Webber is, and I don't disagree with you he's one of the best, trading away high first round picks can be such a double edged sword, as in the case of the Kessel deal.

Let me ask you this, say we win the lottery and have a shot at Jones. Do you still make this deal or do you say F no and pick Jones. Because if that's the case, then you have to keep in mind Weber was drafted like 47th overall. And though he didn't make the show right away, when he did he quickly became one of the best. Maybe we have the next Weber in our system right now.

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#41 Matt Henderson
April 16 2013, 01:58PM
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Judging by the use of Open Brackets in that swearing quote, I'd say that Nail Yakupov has a pretty good grasp of the AHL for a kid who will never play a game there.

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#42 Will
April 16 2013, 02:02PM
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Minister D- wrote:

There seems to be an unspoken consensus among too many fans that Klefbom will simply come in and be a top six guy right away. In countless posts I've come across that speculate on next year's lineup Klefbom is just slotted right in there, fait accompli.

Now, there's no doubt he's a great player and should have a solid career as an Oiler, but he's also had two major injuries in the past two seasons. This year was probably Klefbom's most important development year, and he lost 3/4's of it due to injury. He's only played 11 games in the SEL this year.

I have a strong suspicion that, even if he performs well in camp, putting him in the lineup next year without adequate support (i.e. very soft minutes with a solid veteran beside him) will condemn him to the same fate as Lander, another guy who performed well enough in last year's camp but was WAY over his head as an NHL player. Klefbom is at least a year away.

All good points. However look how good Galchnyuk is doing this year. And if Klefbomb is asked to come in and be a shut down guy instead of a puck moving offence guy, I think that is an easier role to step into. Especially considering he has played big minutes as a shut down guy on bigger ice. Maybe I'm wrong but it stands to reason a smaller ice surface would make it easier to defend. This is the same reason skilled forwards have a tough time coming down to smaller ice, as they have less room.

As long as he comes in and can be a competent shut down guy, then the other parts of his game, like his point shot, and puck moving, are things he could potentially develop in a bottom six role.

Will any of this happen, no idea as I'm just speculating completely. So far though, our shiny rookies have all at least met very high expectations.

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#43 DigDeepNBleedBlue
April 16 2013, 02:03PM
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Will wrote:

Do you know if has like a no move, no trade clause? If so I imagine some of the big name teams with loads of cap space would be his first option above the Oilers.

If it's up to the Predators, however, I don't know. I mean they went through a lot to keep a player that obviously didn't want to play there since he singed the offer sheet to Philly.

I kind of think Nashville knows that if Weber goes, so does their franchise. I think they, like us, are trying to add without subtracting.

Plus as great as Webber is, and I don't disagree with you he's one of the best, trading away high first round picks can be such a double edged sword, as in the case of the Kessel deal.

Let me ask you this, say we win the lottery and have a shot at Jones. Do you still make this deal or do you say F no and pick Jones. Because if that's the case, then you have to keep in mind Weber was drafted like 47th overall. And though he didn't make the show right away, when he did he quickly became one of the best. Maybe we have the next Weber in our system right now.

Nope on the no trade clause. Nash can do what they like.

I think if it's Eberle and this years first Nash's mgmt can sell it to their fan base as a positive.

If the Oilers win the lottery of course I take Seth. Hands down.

I think the lottery is done after the regular season. The Oil will know what their selection is well before they can even make a trade.

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#44 Rocket
April 16 2013, 02:10PM
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Will wrote:

With so few quality defensemen available in the coming free agency this summer, I really can't see Smid going anywhere. Especially because he plays the exact type of gritty shot blocking game Mac T jerks off over. "Oh ya, look at that shot blocking. Ya sacrifice that body."

You're welcome.

Yes thank you for that mental image. Nightmares to follow.

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#45 Fresh Mess
April 16 2013, 02:14PM
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We don't even know if Klefbom will be an NHL player yet. A segment of lunkheads here creamed their jeans over Teubert too, and had him slotted in as the next Scott Stevens.

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#46 Fresh Mess
April 16 2013, 02:16PM
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Will wrote:

All good points. However look how good Galchnyuk is doing this year. And if Klefbomb is asked to come in and be a shut down guy instead of a puck moving offence guy, I think that is an easier role to step into. Especially considering he has played big minutes as a shut down guy on bigger ice. Maybe I'm wrong but it stands to reason a smaller ice surface would make it easier to defend. This is the same reason skilled forwards have a tough time coming down to smaller ice, as they have less room.

As long as he comes in and can be a competent shut down guy, then the other parts of his game, like his point shot, and puck moving, are things he could potentially develop in a bottom six role.

Will any of this happen, no idea as I'm just speculating completely. So far though, our shiny rookies have all at least met very high expectations.

Coming into the NHL as a shutdown D-man is "easier" ?

I'm speechless.

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#47 mr_nihilism
April 16 2013, 02:27PM
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Sorry if it's already been mentioned somewhere, but in case anybody missed it, it seems the Sun is really on a roll the last two days in calling out Oilers management. First Tambellini, and now Lowe.

http://www.edmontonsun.com/2013/04/15/president-kevin-lowe-fails-to-provide-change-in-leadership-he-says-the-team-needs

Nice to see the media growing a set and speaking up for the fans and the future of the franchise.

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#48 Ogie Oilthorpe
April 16 2013, 02:47PM
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Fresh Mess wrote:

Coming into the NHL as a shutdown D-man is "easier" ?

I'm speechless.

That was my first thought as well, and I agree the shut down role generally seems harder to attain.

However, you have to consider the players skillset coming in. If you are J Shultz than that shut down role will take years to build, if you are David Musil I think the step to effective puck moving would be more difficult (see Ladi Smid).

I think either way the transition to the NHL is generally longer for D-men, and regradless we can't automatically assume Klefbom will step right in.

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#49 27Ginge
April 16 2013, 02:51PM
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A left handed dman that can play 22 minutes a night besides Schultz without embarassing himself should be the biggest worry, period. All else is secondary. Marc Staal, Brayden Coburn, Karl Alzner. These are the type of guys I would love to see.

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#50 Jackson
April 16 2013, 03:18PM
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WOW trade for me would be .

Jordan Eberle for Adam Larsson.

Makes some sense to both sides.

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