2009-10 Oilers Goats and Stars

bingofuel
September 30 2009 12:30PM

oilers-goat-star

It's become a tradition: every year at OilersNation (and at our sister sites FlamesNation and CanucksArmy), our writers and commenters pick their stars — that one player who they will praise without end no matter what — and their goats — their yearly whipping-boy; he who can do no good for the season.

And this season is no exception.

Your stalwart writers running the ship this year, Robin Brownlee, Jason Gregor, Jonathan Willis, Amber McCormick, bingofuel, and Wanye Gretz (who has already picked his star and his goat), have submitted their goats and stars for the 2009-10 Oilers hockey season. Who will you pick?

Jonathan Willis' Star and Goat

Star: Lubomir Visnovsky.

Visnovsky was Edmonton's best defenseman last year whn healthy, and he's the kind of player Pat Quinn loves.  If the powerplay turns around, Visnovsky will be a big part of it; if the team manages to score more goals five-on-five, Visnovsky will be a part of that too.  He was a star last season, and with good health should be more than that.

Goat: Nikolai Khabibulin.

I hope this prediction doesn't come true. I really, really do. There's just too many danger signs to pick someone else, though. He's 36 years old. He's been consistently injured pretty much every season since the lockout. Last time he signed a four-year contract, he stunk up the joint for the first two years, was mediocre in the third year, and came on strong in the fourth year - after management had gone out and spent money on a replacement.

Maybe things will be different this time. For the team to have success, they'll need to be.

Jason Gregor's Star and Goat

Star: JF Jacques

Sure, I could have picked one of the smurf-like forwards, who will undoubtedly outscore Jacques, but they are supposed to do that. Jacques will play in 71 games this year, and that will guarantee the Oilers will dress four forwards who are six feet or taller every game. Regardless of what system they play, they aren’t big enough upfront and having Jacques contribute every night will make a difference. He will be one of the few Oiler forwards to set career highs in goals, assists and points this year. I can’t see many guys matching that, so how can Jacques not be a star.

Goat: Marc Pouliot

If he is on the team, then I can’t see the Oilers improving. He doesn’t hit, he doesn’t check, he doesn’t score and I don’t think he thinks the game well enough to help the Oilers. Sure, he might go to another organization and score nine goals, which will have some Poulioholics whining that the Oilers gave up on another young prospect, but I will say good riddance if it happens. If Pouliot is on this team, they aren’t good enough.

Robin Brownlee's Star and Goat

Star: Mike Comrie

While it's a toss-up for me between Comrie and Patrick O'Sullivan, I'm going with MC because he's got a way of shoving it up the backsides of people who doubt him.

With all the bittnerness that accompanied Comrie's departure in 2003, he's got something to prove this time around. While I'm guessing he'll face a smattering of boos when he returns, fans being what they are, it won't be long until they're saluting him again -- with more than one finger.

Goat: Nikolai Khabibulin

Just a hunch, but The Bulin Wall had more bad seasons than good during his last contract before signing on with the Oilers for the next 17 years. Khabibulin, 36, is on the downside of his career and if he slips and a breaks a hip, it could get ugly in a hurry. With JDD as the back-up plan, what could possibly go wrong?

Amber McCormick's Star and Goat

Star: Ales Hemsky

Ales Hemsky. Over the past couple seasons he has surprised me. In 2006-07 I was always worried he was going to vomit going in circles around the net. Every season he takes more chances. Some work and some don’t but the hunger is there. I really think this is the season that will make him a star.

Goat: Dustin Penner

Without a doubt, Dustin Penner will reside in my dog house (and no, that’s no a euphemism for anything). There was a time when I forgave him for everything due to his purdy eyes but those days are far behind me. It will take a miracle and him giving up donairs cold-turkey to make me care about him again.

*Sidebar* I hate to admit this but I have a feeling Mike Comrie is hell-bent on making Edmonton eat its words. A lot of time has passed since he left in his huff and now he’s back with the Duff. Hometown pride is a powerful thing no matter how much you’re booed.

bingofuel's Star and Goat

Star: Nikolai Khabibulin

Knowing what little I do about hockey, and the scant few things I know about the Oilers, I'm going with the Bulin Wall for my star. The Oilers are well known for relying on very little other than their goaltender to scrape through games. I don't expect this year will be any different. Also, I just want to see how many boos and hisses I get for this one.

Goat: Steve Staios

I like Steve Staios. I have nothing against the man personally. He has lots of heart. But old, old balls. Staios will be inconsistent at best this year. At worst, the poor man will bust a hip. Hopefully he'll take a few opposing players out in the process.

The competition

You can also read about the competition's goats and stars:

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Bingofuel is the handsome cyborg who pulls all the levers behind the curtains of the OilersNation. When he isn't running the site, he's plugged into a wall socket, recharging. Or Brownlee and Wanye are playing "keep away" with him. He gets little to no respect.
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#251 smiliegirl15
October 01 2009, 12:57PM
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Dan the Man wrote:

Well said…isn’t Blair Betts just a slightly larger Marty Reasoner who actually scores less and has a worse face-off percentage too? And we all know how much everyone wanted to keep marty around.

I hope you meant it between ~ these. Our loss was Stoll.

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#252 Halibut
October 01 2009, 01:02PM
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ronaldo wrote:

Dan the Man wrote: Well said…isn’t Blair Betts just a slightly larger Marty Reasoner who actually scores less and has a worse face-off percentage too? And we all know how much everyone wanted to keep marty around. So you’re saying Betts is no Sakic?

HA HA HA. That's priceless, MacT sure could talk up his 4th liners.

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#253 Archaeologuy
October 01 2009, 01:03PM
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Mark wrote:

#83 will not play more than 60 games and will not get more than 40 points.

On the powerplay?

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#254 Halibut
October 01 2009, 01:07PM
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Mark wrote:

Goat: Hemsky. I’ve given my thoughts regarding #83 in a previous post and nothing has happened since then to change my mind. #83 will not play more than 60 games and will not get more than 40 points.

The only way I see that happening is if he doesnt play more than 40 games. I'm a little worried with his injuries late last year and this groin thing he has going on now that something could happen and put him out long term. That would be very bad cause I think he's pretty much guaranteed to be in the .8 - 1.0 ppg range.

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#255 RossCreek
October 01 2009, 01:07PM
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Moreau out of practice. Nilsson took his spot on the 4th line - Stauffer, Oilers Lunch

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#256 scorecoff hemmercules
October 01 2009, 01:08PM
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EddieEdmonton wrote:

im starting to believe these pesimists of oilers are just bandwagon jumpers travelling on the clagary vancouver wagon because tsn told them they are better this year then the oilers

I'm pretty sure most of the world thinks Vancouver and Calgery will be better than the oilers this year, not just the guys at TSN. I love the oilers but you have to be realistic about what we have going here. I'm celebrating like it's 1999 if we make the second season this year.

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#257 RossCreek
October 01 2009, 01:08PM
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MattL wrote:

Here’s an idea for a poll, “Have you actually seen Blair Betts play hockey?” -Yes, I follow every 4th line player in the State of New York -No, I have a life, there are hundreds of mediocre players in the world, how am I supposed to know everything about everyone?

Played against him growing up.

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#258 Ender the Dragon
October 01 2009, 01:23PM
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MattL wrote:

Here’s an idea for a poll, “Have you actually seen Blair Betts play hockey?” -Yes, I follow every 4th line player in the State of New York -No, I have a life, there are hundreds of mediocre players in the world, how am I supposed to know everything about everyone?

RossCreek wrote:

Played against him growing up.

As a third choice for the poll, I don't think it's going to get a lot of hits, RC.

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#259 RossCreek
October 01 2009, 01:26PM
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@ Ender the Dragon: What, you mean shadowing Betts in Bantam doesn't mean jack? *GASP* ~How Dare You~

LOL

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#260 MattL
October 01 2009, 01:27PM
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RossCreek wrote:

Played against him growing up.

Oh yeah, well.... well..... How was he on the PK?

damn RossCreek... how come you gotta ruin my fun?

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#261 Tommy
October 01 2009, 01:27PM
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Looks like Big Sexy is getting some international recognition. Surprised Wanye hasn't posted this yet...

"Tennis star Serena Williams, the NBA's Dwight Howard, the NFL's Adrian Peterson and mixed martial artist Gina Carano are among the 30-plus athletes posing nude or semi-nude in ESPN The Magazine's first-ever "Body Issue" hitting newsstands Oct. 9.

Also included "NHL: Zdeno Chara, Chris Higgins, Sheldon Souray, Bill Guerin, Mike Komisarek"

Linky: http://www.usatoday.com/sports/2009-09-28-espnmag-body-issue_N.htm

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#262 RossCreek
October 01 2009, 01:29PM
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@ MattL: Don't recall but he was dynamite on the PP!

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#263 BingBong
October 01 2009, 01:46PM
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Man, the hate on for Staios here is ridiculous. Give him his 10 minutes, 3rd pairing minutes - and he's effective for the most part. He's also - unfortunatley, aside from Souray - our most physical d-man. The guy is no all-star, but geez. That being said, I've heard he's playing with Souray, and that many minutes worries me. Anything after 10-15 minutes is definitely diminishing returns.

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#264 Ender the Dragon
October 01 2009, 01:48PM
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@ RossCreek: lol. Not saying that at all (though benchmarking NHL players by ranking how well they played against you might be a grading system that some on this site would critique).

I'm just saying that if the third poll choice regarding seeing Betts' play involved being on the ice with him, you might be the only guy here that votes that way.

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#265 BarryS
October 01 2009, 02:22PM
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scorecoff hemmercules wrote:

EddieEdmonton wrote: im starting to believe these pesimists of oilers are just bandwagon jumpers travelling on the clagary vancouver wagon because tsn told them they are better this year then the oilers I’m pretty sure most of the world thinks Vancouver and Calgery will be better than the oilers this year, not just the guys at TSN. I love the oilers but you have to be realistic about what we have going here. I’m celebrating like it’s 1999 if we make the second season this year.

Fan and realistic is an oximoron. You can be a fan or you can be realistic. if you were realistic you would not spend any money on any sort of frivility like sports and entertainment.

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#266 David S
October 01 2009, 02:32PM
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RossCreek wrote:

Moreau out of practice. Nilsson took his spot on the 4th line – Stauffer, Oilers Lunch

Nilsson/Gagner/Stortini

Daddy like!

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#267 BarryS
October 01 2009, 02:40PM
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David S wrote:

RossCreek wrote: Moreau out of practice. Nilsson took his spot on the 4th line – Stauffer, Oilers Lunch Nilsson/Gagner/Stortini Daddy like!

How do you spell trade bait showcasing? Nillsson better rack up points and back checks lest he be Springfield bound when we get healthy.

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#268 BarryS
October 01 2009, 02:50PM
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@ BarryS: pardon me, we should be the Oilers

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#269 wuxdgmb
October 10 2009, 07:08AM
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