SIMPLE, YET DIFFICULT...

Jason Gregor
December 09 2013 01:56PM

It is simple to see what Craig Mactavish needs to do, but it will be difficult to achieve; Get Better Players.

We can spend hours breaking down Dallas Eakins' system, goaltending, the powerplay or a plethora of other issues, but it always comes back to the same problem; a lineup lacking in NHL talent.

MacTavish didn't build this roster, but he is the man in charge moving forward and he needs to start adding players, especially defenceman, instead of shipping them out for future prospects. The Oilers can't afford to give away any more proven NHL players for another prospect or draft pick. They have enough young players, they need experience, size and most importantly some more talent on the blueline.

The harsh reality is that opposing forwards don't fear anyone on the Oilers blueline. Andrew Ference is the only one who is hard to play against. None of the remaining D-men will make a forward pay the price in front of the net or in the corner. The Oilers can't expect Martin Marincin, Oscar Klefbom or Darnell Nurse to be that type of D-man next season. If they do, then you can expect their playoff drought to extend to nine seasons.

The onus is on MacTavish to recognize this and do his best to rectify it. Find another trading partner like the St.Louis Blues, a team willing to part with an experienced veteran player for a younger, cheaper talent, and pull the trigger.

Everyone knows the Oilers aren't making the playoffs, but they currently have over $7 million in cap space so they can afford to take on some salary to make a deal work. MacTavish has already stated he'd be willing to move the 2014 first round pick, so we know he understands the need to inject experience rather than youth into his organization.

A team looking to acquire that pick will likely wait until the season is over and they know exactly what draft spot they are getting. If you traded the Oilers a solid player today for that pick, the value of the pick would decrease by June. I don't see that pick being moved until closer to the draft.

If MacTavish wants to improve his roster over the next few months, I see the following pieces as the most likely options to move:

Sam Gagner, Nail Yakupov and Ales Hemsky. They could move Jeff Petry, but they don't have much depth on the backend, so he wouldn't be my first choice.

Hemsky is a pending UFA, so he will garner the smallest return, however, he will have value at the deadline and his cap hit will be more manageable around the March 5th deadline.

Gagner needs to play better to increase his value. The Oilers and Gagner supposedly have an unofficial no-movement clause, however, this is a business and if a deal comes along that makes sense, I don't see why MacTavish wouldn't pull the trigger.

Yakupov will garner the most interest, and while there is some risk in moving a former #1 overall pick, there will also be significant interest in him because of his draft status. If you want a good player in return, you need to be willing to give up something.

I don't see Yakupov being a foundation piece of the Oilers; they already have forwards who will be that guy. They need to use him to try and acquire a solid piece to their blueline.

Regardless of who or when MacTavish makes a move, it is apparent this group of players simply isn't good enough to win. 

QUICK HITS....

  • I'm glad James Neal got suspended. His knee on Brad Marchand was incredibly cheap, and he deserved five games. Kneeing a guy in the head is gutless, not to mention idiotic.
     
  • Shawn Thornton has always been an honest player, prior to going after Orpik. What I found crazy about that play, is that we see guys punching one another with gloves on all the time and rarely do they get injured. It doesn't excuse Thornton for what he did, he deserves to be suspended, likely at least ten games, but every NHL player I spoke with regarding the incident was surprised Orpik was injured that bad from that gloved punch.
     
  • It is time Dallas Eakins sends a message to someone in his top-nine. The Oilers had way too many turnovers at the Flames blueline on Saturday, and many of them came from blind pass attempts, rather than putting the puck deep in the zone. The Oilers are entering game 32; the coach can't allow those types of plays to continue without consequences.
     
  • Martin Marincin has been good in his two games. He's averaged over 15 minutes a game, got some PP time and he's been sheltered properly. I'd play him again on Tuesday, but I'd be cautious of keeping him here all season. A small taste of the NHL should motivate him even more when he returns to the AHL, and especally during the off-season where he needs to work on getting stronger.
     
  • Bryzgalov practiced today as did Richard Bachman. Bachman will head to OKC the minute he is cleared to play, and it sounds like Bryzgalov is close to being cleared to play. Both Bryzgalov and Dubnyk are UFAs at the end of the year, and their play in the final 50 games should decide if either, both or none of them will be re-signed.
     
  • With three weeks remaining in the NFL season my Miami Dolphins are in the wild card mix. I'm surprised, considering their horrendous GM, but with games remaining against the Patriots, Bills and Jets, they have a very good chance of making it. 
     
  • Tyler Pitlick is heading back to OKC. He hasn't played a game since October 26th. Once he gets back in game shape, I wouldn't be surprised to see him recalled in January.
     
  • The OKC Barons have had 41 different players in their lineup, including 7 different goalies, yet the Barons are only one point out of the playoffs. With Bachman and LaBarbera close to being sent down, along with Pitlick's re-assignment today, the Barons should make a push for the playoffs over the next few months.

DAY SEVEN...MONTH OF GIVING...

On Friday we raised another $2,900 for our Derks Menswear package and the Oilers/Flames tickets. Thanks to Dan and Raja for their generous bids.

Today's package... THE VIP Experience...

  • Pair of Edmonton Rush season tickets. Gold seats, lower bowl.
  • A behind the scenes tour during one home game. You'll meet the coaches, players and the cheer team.
  • You and a friend will go on a road trip with the Rush to Calgary for a regular season game. You will travel with the team, stay at the team hotel, go to the game and have dinner with team owner, Bruce Urban. You will be invited to the after party as well.
  • You will get a meet and greet with UFC champion Georges St.Pierre on January 11th in Edmonton.

    You can bid today between 2-6 p.m. by calling 780.444.1260 or 1.800.243.1945. All the proceeds will go towards Santas Anonymous.
     

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 Eighies anyone?
December 09 2013, 02:04PM
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Gagner needs to go ... to the pressbox, then over to the wing. If he wants to play center he needs to play defence or get out of town.

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#2 Ducey
December 09 2013, 04:16PM
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Awesome! Trade Yak for a tough vet D man so the Oilers can move up from 25th to 22nd by years end.

That way the Oilers quest for a Cup can be extended by another decade.

...or they could realize it will take the kids a few years to grow up. Yak and Schultz jr don't even have 80 games in the NHL f.f.s.

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#3 Walter Sobchak
December 09 2013, 04:16PM
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Yakupov, almost right after the Colorado game started to run stairs!! Run Stairs!!!

Any given day off the kid is trying to get better.

I tell you this, trading someone who wants to be better and is trying that hard is the definition of stupidity and is exactly what the Oilers management would do!

It still kind of baffles the mind why Smid was traded for nothing, doesn’t it?

The return you could have got at the trade deadline would have been far better then what Calgary gave in return…..pure head scratcher!

Schultz would be the first kid I traded followed closely by Gagner, Now Gagner has been in the organization for 8 years and is still making the same mistakes…..Moving him to the wing won’t change that.

The Oilers don’t have a lot of RW, as Gregor mentions; Hemsky will be gone this year.

The Oilers need to give up picks prospects for players.

Buffalo, Florida, New Jersey, Columbus & Philly are the teams the Oilers should be targeting for defensemen and support players; these are the teams that want picks and prospects now.

I think MacTavish values players differently than the normal fans base, this is what scares me as a fan.

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#4 RexHolez
December 09 2013, 02:24PM
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Why is it always yakupov as the kid to trade? He's the only one with a physical edge and that elusive 1 shot scorer, not to mention his current value is the lowest it will ever be in his career! I'd trade ebs first everyday of the week, I'd argue ebs value will never be higher

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#5 Pouzar99
December 09 2013, 04:15PM
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Jason, you are certainly right, but the trouble is going to be getting fair value in exchange for players like Yak, Gagner or Hemsky, or for our first round pick. We desperately need solid veteran help on defence and size, experience and meanness in the Top 9.

Unfortunately the other GMs are smart. There are no more Mike Miburys or Phil Espositos to fleece. They know MacT and all of OIler management is under tremendous pressure. Surely Katz must be running out of patience with Lowe and company by now.

MacT deserves credit for the Perron trade, obviously, as well as the signings of Ference Gordon and Bryzgalov. Grebeshkov was a relatively cheap experiment that failed, same with Belov, although I am not ready to write him off yet. I will go to my grave trying to figure why we virtually gave Smid to the Flames. So far axing Krueger in favour of Eakins is the biggest question mark. He is obviously no strategic genius, but he may be able to motivate the players more. I think MacT and Eakins deserve another year but giving the lack of development of our D man surely Steve Smith has to go. It is tough to be an Oiler fan these days, although the 6-3-1 run has helped a bit.

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#6 2004Z06
December 09 2013, 05:09PM
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On another note....Anyone else think the trading of Smid was fishy? We didn't need the cap space to sign Bryzgalov as very few of the Oilers will hit their bonuses this year. He was one of only 2 of our so called "physical defensemen". Did Smid piss someone off? I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop as in a follow up deal but......crickets. Just seems odd to me.

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#7 Xavier
December 09 2013, 03:20PM
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Gregor is so horny to move Yakupov it's incomprehensible. Why not make it to a western conference team so he can come light the Oilers up for the next 15 years while we're at it? The 3 first overall picks should be off the market, anyone else is fair game, including Eberle.

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#9 Taylor Gang
December 09 2013, 05:28PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Please explain why you would move Eberle ahead of Yakupov, other than he has more value.

What does Yakupov do better than Eberle, that would help the Oilers win in the future. I don't see one area of Yakupov's game that is better.

Just because Eberle is better doesn't mean he should be the one to keep.

First of all, you gotta give some to get some. Eberle is the most logical "give some" piece considering he is the highest paid player on the team and probably the second most valuable. Eberle doesn't show a high level of compete and the team seems to be preaching compete throughout the whole roster. Yakupov is one of the hardest working players on the team, he just needs to learn how to play NHL hockey.

Secondly, you're comparing a guy in his fourth season to a guy who hasn't even played a full season yet. In Yak's fourth season he will be skating loops around old Ebs.

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#10 #ThereGoesTheOilers
December 09 2013, 02:06PM
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I wonder if our 2014 first round and Eberle would net us the type of player our blueline so desprately needs.

Yes, it might be a bit of an overpay, but at this point with so much burgeoning talent up front and only a silver-lining on the horizon in Nurse, we can afford it.

I suggest Eberle simply because he's had longer to prove his trade value (unlike Yakupov), and I think you'd be hard pressed to say he has more upside than Hall or Nuge.

If you can get the kind of d-man we need back for less, then all the better.

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#11 Freewheeling Freddie
December 09 2013, 03:04PM
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Trade Yak, not. He isn't afraid to mix it up and has only played under 100 games. He gets traded it will haunt us for years.

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#12 Knight
December 09 2013, 04:06PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Please explain why you would move Eberle ahead of Yakupov, other than he has more value.

What does Yakupov do better than Eberle, that would help the Oilers win in the future. I don't see one area of Yakupov's game that is better.

2 areas of his game that seem better are physicality, he is not afraid to throw the odd body check and stick up for himself now and then. I also think his compete level is higher, eberle plays beyond soft and is so one dimensional.

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#13 Lowe Expectations
December 09 2013, 04:36PM
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When I look at the other teams in the Oilers division, I can't figure out when this team will ever make the playoffs.

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#14 OilClog
December 09 2013, 05:01PM
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Why does Hemsky have to leave town? Sign the damn man, give him some damn respect for once. He's been an Oiler his entire career, loves it in Edmonton colours, is an actual Hockey Player, and deserves to be here when this team gets it turned around. He will never get us the value that he brings to the Oilers in a trade, he's a heck of a lot better of a player then Sam Gagner.

For once, can we not have a Career long Oiler. Or is that asking for too much? We don't lose games because of Hemsky, for years the only reason we were typically in games was due to his brilliance on the ice. Let's show a little loyalty ourselves for once and keep the man a damn Oiler, screw looking for magic beans.

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#16 They're $hittie
December 09 2013, 03:49PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Please explain why you would move Eberle ahead of Yakupov, other than he has more value.

What does Yakupov do better than Eberle, that would help the Oilers win in the future. I don't see one area of Yakupov's game that is better.

While there is nothing there right now to say he is better, lets not forget that Eberle did not start until his draft +2 year and than had 43 points. Yak isnt at draft plus two and has played in two different pro leagues in which different styles are played. Next year will be the yard stick, and it will also be interesting to see if Yak gets to play with a hall (yes he was a rookie also) and a defensive forward (horcoff) to shelter them.

Eberle has been protected and played with great players his whole NHL career, no other oiler has had the luxury.

Yak will also be on a bridge contract soon, where as Eberle is overpaid at 6M.

Yak is considered to have a higher ceiling (yes it is only potential).

There are reasons to trade one or the other. And seeing how it is unlikely to get all the problems fixed soon, you may have to trade the player that helps you more now, to get better right now also.

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#19 Soccer Steve
December 09 2013, 03:43PM
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Wayne Gretzky was traded. Therefore ANYONE can be traded. This should never be forgotten.

I went to the game on Saturday - Hockey Night in Canada against Calgary - and it was a terrible, lifeless game for 59 min and 50 seconds.

When I got home I watched the Bruins and Penguins highlights and realized I'd been brainwashed into cheering for this version of the Oilers.

Trade them all.

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#20 BLAKPOO
December 09 2013, 04:48PM
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I was at the game on Saturday too, and the one thing that stood out was the number of forwards hanging out at the o-zone blue line waiting for the puck to penetrate the zone. If the puck isn't carried over the blue line, the forwards are in no hurry ( or in Smyth's case, not for lack of effort, unable to hurry ) to go dig it out. This, of course, results in a loss of possession.

The only Dman that looked to provide any kind of offense from the back end was Larsen... and it seemed that Eakins was rewarding him with ice time. But even if the D are flying and trying to set up zone entry plays, it's hard to do so when all of your forwards have pinched up and are at a dead stop at the blue line. they are easily picked up by the opposing D, and the play dies.

What this team needs to work on is breakouts and zone entries. They need to move up as a unit and if no one's going to chase the puck down, carry it in to the zone.

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#22 Walter Sobchak
December 09 2013, 04:36PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

He has four goals this year, and all of them are on the PP.

Watch Yakupov closely, he doesn't think the game great. He shoots the puck hard, but he is not as great a goal scorer as some think. IMO.

He doesn't put himself in great shooting positions often enough.

This I get! his history tells us he can score, what I would like to know, is how he can score last season and put himself in good position, but this year he seems to be all over the map?

I have to believe the kid is bloody confused, there has to be some kind of disconnect between Yakupov and Eakins because he sure wasn’t that awful with Ralph! (Same coaching staff) I agree he was out of position at times last season and wasn’t strong in his own end, but this year he just seemed to regress, I don’t believe it’s a maturity issue ether, I honestly believe he has no clue as to what the coaches expect, so you’re seeing a kid trying everything and anything out there and it just goes from bad to worse?

The kids try is on him, which from everything I read is top notch, the kid on the ice is the coaches, if he’s not thinking the game right and is out of position then coaches have to work with him to get him there.

From what I’m seeing there seems to be no corrective action taken on a lot of Oilers, not just Yakupov.

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#23 Quicksilver ballet
December 09 2013, 02:01PM
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Wandering in the desert.....still.

What goes around, comes around for Marchand and Orpik. Nice to see some player policing still in place. This is exactly the type of policing the Oilers need right now. Puck the code/rules, don't just sit and watch another one of your brothers go down, do something, take a suspension and earn a reputation, show you're a team/family for Christmas sake. If you think what happened last weekend was wrong, watch ping pong you bunch of sissies.

With Weber on the move soon, I'd back up the truck and see if there's anything Poile wants. If he's not available, hunker down for another difficult few years. Maybe the Oilers will grow one of their own in the next 5 yrs. Weber or bust. Yak, Gags, Hemsky, even throw in next summers first if you have to. That would surely beat sucking for another 3 years. Just like the Oilers will never go anywhere without a couple top pairing blueliners, The Preds will never go anywhere with that top 9 group of forwards.

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#24 Zarny
December 09 2013, 03:16PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

Wandering in the desert.....still.

What goes around, comes around for Marchand and Orpik. Nice to see some player policing still in place. This is exactly the type of policing the Oilers need right now. Puck the code/rules, don't just sit and watch another one of your brothers go down, do something, take a suspension and earn a reputation, show you're a team/family for Christmas sake. If you think what happened last weekend was wrong, watch ping pong you bunch of sissies.

With Weber on the move soon, I'd back up the truck and see if there's anything Poile wants. If he's not available, hunker down for another difficult few years. Maybe the Oilers will grow one of their own in the next 5 yrs. Weber or bust. Yak, Gags, Hemsky, even throw in next summers first if you have to. That would surely beat sucking for another 3 years. Just like the Oilers will never go anywhere without a couple top pairing blueliners, The Preds will never go anywhere with that top 9 group of forwards.

There is zero chance Weber is on the move soon. Zero.

If you want to know why...go look at how much Nsh has paid him and how many games he has actually played under his new contract.

It's not going to happen.

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#25 nunyour
December 09 2013, 05:07PM
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If you were a G.M. what would you give Edmonton for Gags,and Hemsky and their 5 mil.cap hits,i'm guessing not much.

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#26 Quicksilver ballet
December 09 2013, 04:48PM
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Am I ever glad the Oilers didn't trade Yakupov for Clarkson, as some suggested last season. Nail is blowing Clarkson out of the water as far as points go. 50% more points than ole Clarky boy.

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#27 Smokey
December 09 2013, 04:05PM
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The Gagner No trade verbal agreement means nothing. Oilers gotta do what they need to do. Gagner is making himself virtually untradeable anyways.

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#28 They're $hittie
December 09 2013, 04:12PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

Who says Yakupov is considered to have a higher ceiling? Because he was drafted 1st overall? IMO That has no bearing now that both are in the NHL.

As for saying Eberle was protected and plays with great players, you do realize that Eberle, regardless of who he plays with, has produced chances and points.

I'm not opposed to trading Eberle, if the package is that good, but when I compare the two players Eberle is better in every facet, and I don't see Yakupov's hockey sense improving as much as it needs to be to be a better overall player than Eberle.

Time will tell.

His ceiling is considered higher yes because most scouts rated him as a number one overall pick. So the majority of men who make decisions in the NHL would probably consider him higher ceiling.

Eberle is at 90% his ceiling. He is at his offensive output with some experience rounding out his overall game.

I did agree with you that right now Eberle is better at all aspects of the game.

As for Eberle producing where ever he plays this is true, however he very very seldomly played without point producing players.

Taylor hall has been asked to carry tough minutes and sometimes with struggling players.

Nuge has somewhat been sheltered but has always been the defensive catalyst on the line.

Gagner has been up and down the line up playing with face punchers to raw rookies

Yak has been up and down also,

Eberle I have seen on the third line maybe a dozen times. He has had by far the most comforting introduction to the league and the most accomadating situations to play in out of all of our first round picks since 2007.

You are right time will tell, but seeing how eberle was given 5 years after draft before he was judged or criticized maybe would should extend the same courtesy to our youngest player. Part of this probably has to do with the fact that we excepted losing a few years back but we dont now.

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#29 They're $hittie
December 09 2013, 04:14PM
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@Quicksilver ballet

99 wasnt traded, he was SOLD!

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#30 Gunnar
December 09 2013, 04:19PM
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Hey gregor,

totally agree with gagner going. An nhl team that completes can only afford one undersized offensive centre in its top six. Nuge is the better player and has a higher ceiling, gagner's got to go. Believe that a decent d-man could be returned for sam.

Hemsky is a ufa who has suffered enough losing to last two nhl careers, its time for change. The return is not going to alter the oilers fortunes though. Maybe a third line vet who's won before and plays with sand.

As for Yak, I disagree, at least for his ELC the oilers should keep him. Trading him now they will be lucky to gent 20 cents on the dollar for Yak. Play him top minutes build up his value as high as you can before giving him away next year.

The player the oilers need to move and now is Eberle. He is not and will never be a 6 million dollar player (oiler fans are known for their understanding and patience for players that are not worth their contract... cough...Horcoft...cough sorry just clearing my throat). If teams around the nhl think he is worth the contract then trade him to them.

I have to be upfront here, I've never been a believer of Eberle I feel he is both undersized and slow. You can be one of those and still be an impact player not both. Everyone thinks he is great player, just ask every oiler fan, so there would theoretically be a good return for him that can change the direction of this team. This is the only guy that could get the oilers that top pairing d-man they need so badly.

This would be the kind of bold moves that MacT was talking about

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#31 Loweblows
December 09 2013, 05:34PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

On another note....Anyone else think the trading of Smid was fishy? We didn't need the cap space to sign Bryzgalov as very few of the Oilers will hit their bonuses this year. He was one of only 2 of our so called "physical defensemen". Did Smid piss someone off? I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop as in a follow up deal but......crickets. Just seems odd to me.

Actually right before he was traded he commented that things may get worse or something to that effect. Just like Souray, criticising management earns you a quick ticket out of town. Players must be made aware that Kevin Lowe has a kingdom to protect. Off with his head.

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#32 Young Oil
December 09 2013, 02:31PM
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I'm not saying we should do this, but what could Gagner and Justin Schultz get us in a trade? If it could get us a top 2 Dman and a tough to play against 3rd liner that might be worth looking into IMO. Two of our biggest defensive liabilities moved for two defensively responsible players could help a lot.

I know Schultz is still learning the NHL game, and I love him as an offensive threat, but if we could get Tyutin and Jenner for him and Gags I'd do it in a second.

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#33 BIGDAWG
December 09 2013, 02:46PM
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Trade this player and a pick for that player.. I never see any names coming back in these Mock trades... Ebrele and a pick for who? who is out there that we can get??

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#34 bazmagoo
December 09 2013, 05:08PM
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@OilClog

Agreed Oilclog, I think if we end up trading Yakupov or Eberle we should keep Hemsky. But we need more grit so one of them needs to go imo.

If we could get Hemsky for 2-3 seasons at $3 - $3.5 million I think that would be reasonable for a 2nd line winger. I've actually been impressed with Hemmer's hustle on the back check this season.

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#35 The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33
December 09 2013, 06:36PM
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This is clearly Horcoff's fault. We could use that bastard right now. He was a good captain and the kids actually looked up to him. You suck Horcoff!

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#36 Hockey Problems
December 09 2013, 08:05PM
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Yakupov has played more physical in the last couple games than Eberle has his whole career. Eberle won't engage in either the offensive or defensive zone. We need players that are more physical. Eberle will never be that guy, move him now while his value is high.

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#37 Darren
December 09 2013, 04:18PM
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One reason that occurred to me why players don't often get injured from a gloved punch is that usually their heads are not pressed up against something solid, like the surface of the ice. The impact of the punches could not be diffused or absorbed by any movement of the head in this situation.

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#38 reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)
December 09 2013, 02:03PM
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The title Simple yet Difficult is the perfect title for MacT... He is simple and makes the fans lives difficult.

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#39 @Oilanderp
December 09 2013, 03:09PM
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We are strongest at RW... if there is a trade it has to be one of them... doesn't it?

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#40 oilerjed
December 09 2013, 03:49PM
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#ThereGoesTheOilers wrote:

I wonder if our 2014 first round and Eberle would net us the type of player our blueline so desprately needs.

Yes, it might be a bit of an overpay, but at this point with so much burgeoning talent up front and only a silver-lining on the horizon in Nurse, we can afford it.

I suggest Eberle simply because he's had longer to prove his trade value (unlike Yakupov), and I think you'd be hard pressed to say he has more upside than Hall or Nuge.

If you can get the kind of d-man we need back for less, then all the better.

I agree, while at the moment Yak is a bit of a train wreck. With some defensive coaching you could very realistically end up with a forward who hits skates with a rocket of a shot. We have yet to see what this kid can really do. Ebs, IMO, is what he is. Which is pretty damn good player but soft soft soft and we have that covered in spades. He should be able to get some GMs attention when his name is put out there.

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#41 srbuhr
December 09 2013, 02:08PM
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I think we have to get over any player should be off limits. To get great talent we have to offer something. Really I can't see Sam and Nail really getting us much without the 2014 pick included. Hall may actually get a dman and maybe he will learn how to play a complete game and haunt us for years. Regardless spare parts will get us more spare parts and the team has more then enough of those.

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#43 John
December 09 2013, 05:07PM
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Yes the Oilers and Gagne may have a unofficial agreement on a No Trade this year BUT Gagne has not lived up to side of the bargain his play has been abysmal .If I was Mac T I would not feel obligated to hold up my side of the deal based on Gagne's lack of effort and general poor play this year. He is taking advantage the organization.

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#44 Oiler Al
December 09 2013, 05:12PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

This I get! his history tells us he can score, what I would like to know, is how he can score last season and put himself in good position, but this year he seems to be all over the map?

I have to believe the kid is bloody confused, there has to be some kind of disconnect between Yakupov and Eakins because he sure wasn’t that awful with Ralph! (Same coaching staff) I agree he was out of position at times last season and wasn’t strong in his own end, but this year he just seemed to regress, I don’t believe it’s a maturity issue ether, I honestly believe he has no clue as to what the coaches expect, so you’re seeing a kid trying everything and anything out there and it just goes from bad to worse?

The kids try is on him, which from everything I read is top notch, the kid on the ice is the coaches, if he’s not thinking the game right and is out of position then coaches have to work with him to get him there.

From what I’m seeing there seems to be no corrective action taken on a lot of Oilers, not just Yakupov.

How about a disconnect with our illustrious assistant coaches ... Smith and Buchberger.

They do a lot of the on ice coaching...not a lot of success with this team since they been chewing gum behind the bench. Not a lot of destiny for anyone , with these two clowns on board.

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#45 etownman
December 09 2013, 03:25PM
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Disagree Gregor, the team has enough NHL talent it's just not the right mix! Finding teams to make trades for the type of players the Oilers need is the big problem! I also think the body of NHL work Gagner has performed at wouldn't be a hard sell to a lot of teams, but again, it's finding the right team with the pieces the Oilers need! I think Hemmer's contract gets moved a deadline!

Ference is snarly to play against but not overpowering! Belov is the guy who i thought was consistent all over the ice & fairly physical as well, who did he p--- off! Fistric would look awfully nice in this lineup?

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#46 2004Z06
December 09 2013, 05:03PM
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They're $hittie wrote:

Mac T killed it when they asked for Eberle. He wants to be bold but he will not trade 4, 14, 89, 93, or 64.

Dont see how anything else will be bold.

4 and 93 are untouchable. If you have anyone else on an untouchable list ask your self this; we havent won with this core, do you trade your best and most dominant player? do you trade a number one center you have been looking for for years?

Or do you trade the players who have value and are not the best at anything on the team. 14, 89, 83, 64, 26? That is how you maximize assets and mix it up.

Couldn't agree more however I would add 27 and 57 to your list of untouchables. They both bring what this team desperately needs.

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#47 jamang
December 09 2013, 05:19PM
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taylor hall talking on nhl network about how they don't have a guy that brings everyone back down to earth, a gy that settles things down.

he talked about how they are forced to learn as they go because they don't know what it takes to make it to the playoffs and its a real process.

he mentions ference saying he is a good addition but they don't have that one guy in the locker room. especially not on forward.

FERENCE is the captain and he doesn't do his job. I am really surprised that you can have this kind of situation in your locker room and not make a huge move for phaneuf or weber.

an overpayment is definite.

but a deal of yakupov, hemsky, ganger, petry, 1st can fetch you quite the package. especially with as many draft picks added as you want essentially.

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#48 Rama Lama
December 09 2013, 05:44PM
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We need a professional scout that understands and whose speciality is drafting defenceman..........since no one is going to give us what we want why on earth would we trade our 2014 pick.......it could be Ekblad??

The last time I checked he was exactly what we are looking for........big, talented, and mean!

I do not trust the Oilers Brass to make a proper trade and get what we really need with this pick........this is the same group that found the giant Ference........the exact opposite of what we really need!

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#49 westcoastoil
December 09 2013, 06:06PM
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jamang wrote:

taylor hall talking on nhl network about how they don't have a guy that brings everyone back down to earth, a gy that settles things down.

he talked about how they are forced to learn as they go because they don't know what it takes to make it to the playoffs and its a real process.

he mentions ference saying he is a good addition but they don't have that one guy in the locker room. especially not on forward.

FERENCE is the captain and he doesn't do his job. I am really surprised that you can have this kind of situation in your locker room and not make a huge move for phaneuf or weber.

an overpayment is definite.

but a deal of yakupov, hemsky, ganger, petry, 1st can fetch you quite the package. especially with as many draft picks added as you want essentially.

It takes more than one guy on D. I thought Gordon would have been able to bring some of that settling effect, but to me that still that seems like an excuse. Hall, Eberle & Gagner have played in the league long enough that need to take it upon themselves to step up and put their big boy pants on. Toews and Kane, Sid Geno, Jordan Stall - all young guys who took it to the next level.

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#50 nick
December 09 2013, 06:32PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

On another note....Anyone else think the trading of Smid was fishy? We didn't need the cap space to sign Bryzgalov as very few of the Oilers will hit their bonuses this year. He was one of only 2 of our so called "physical defensemen". Did Smid piss someone off? I kept waiting for the other shoe to drop as in a follow up deal but......crickets. Just seems odd to me.

Ask MacIdiot why he traded Smid. If he was honest, which he isn't. he would say because I don't like him. It was strictly personal with MacT and that is so sad. He gave away one of the true Oilers because he didn't like him. MacTavish is without a doubt the worst GM in the league. There is a very strong rumor within the NHL that there is a group of 12 to 15 GM's that will not deal with MacTavish and Lowe. Kind of makes sense seeing that trades cannot be made. As for the trading of Smid, shame on you MacTavish, making the team you are responsible for worse because of a personal issue.

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