Gapping issues in Anaheim cause the Oilers problems

 Brody  Comments Off on Gapping issues in Anaheim cause the Oilers problems
Mar 232017
 

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Last night in Anaheim the Edmonton Oilers played arguably their biggest game of the season.  Stud goalie Cam Talbot had a rough night but no one should go hard on him as he has been a horse this year and played well almost every night.  He’s allowed to have an off night.  The real reason the Oilers lost , in my opinion, is because they decided not to gap up…on every single goal.  Let’s break it down goal by goal. Continue reading »

Feb 112016
 

You know what I liked about the Leafs last few moves? They aren’t hanging onto a losing culture. They traded away a 40 goal scorer and perennial top 20 point getter and their captain with no regrets. They moved on.  The management didn’t get attached to the players and made the moves they had to make in order to put the plans in place to sign their own players and build the team the way they want it built.

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Feb 052016
 

What if the Oilers can put together a string of wins and points to make a serious playoff push to end out the season in the final days of Rexall Place? Why not? The Sens did it last year at the end of the season, finishing 23-4-4. They did it on the back of amazing goaltending by the Hamburgler and some good bounces and solid team play. The Oilers made a late surge in 2006 to squeak into the playoffs and it was magic. What if?95078701518.34

A guy can dare to dream, but there was one point of view that struck a chord with me last night while I was scrolling through the Twitterverse. What if the Edmonton Oilers change the way the game is played? What if we don’t need another defenseman? What if we are just able to keep scoring so many goals that it doesn’t matter? I know that this flies in the face of everything that the 90’s to 2000’s have taught us…but, what if? What if we are watching the team that is about to change the way the game is played? What if we don’t need to trade Eberle or RNH or anyone, for that matter? What if this is the system where spare parts like Teddy Purcell can thrive? Every generation in every sport has a team that changes the way the game has been played. What if we are watching the beginning of something special? What if we are watching the reinvention of the game?

If a team is facing Draisaitl and Hall followed by McDavid followed by RNH and Eberle…does it really matter who is playing defense? Of course the answer is yes, but…what if? What if a D corps that features Nurse, Sekera, Klefbom and my drunk uncle is good enough to get it done with those forwards? What if?

In the NFL you are supposed to play good defense and run the ball. That’s how you win. Tell that to Tom Brady and Bill Billichek, who haven’t had a consistent running game in a decade yet have won more than any other team in that time. Sometimes, the right people can make it work. What if it’s Edmonton’s time?

What if?

Feb 022016
 

Unknown-1Connor McDavid made his return to the Oilers’ lineup last night and he did not disappoint. He scored the nicest goal that I have ever seen live tonight when he fought off two defenders with the puck seemingly on a string, then pantsed the goaltender before tucking it home. He drove the play all game and every time he touched the puck he was a danger to score or create something incredible. He played on a line with Eberle and Pouliot and while they both had decent games on the scoresheet, I wasn’t overly impressed by either of his wingers. I am of the firm belief that you can take any two capable NHL players that can get the puck off the wall and make a tape-to-tape pass and they will fit in just fine with 97.  Continue reading »

Jan 292016
 

If I am GM Peter Chiarelli, I am preparing myself for a month of heavy scouting and working the phones the best I can. The hope of making the playoffs is fading fast and even with the return of Connor McDavid, the team’s chances look slim. February has some very winnable games – Columbus, the Sens, the Habs, the Leafs, the Devils, the Wild, the Jets… But, the hope is fading fast and unless something drastic is done to shore up the right side and Oscar Klefbom returns soon…well…it’s once again over.  Continue reading »

Jan 262016
 

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The Edmonton Oilers limp into the All-star break leading the N.H.L. in man games lost to injury with 209 games(as of January 23rd). Yet again the team seems jinxed by the hockey gods and I wonder if and when it will ever end. There hasn’t been one game this season where GM Peter Chiarelli has been able to see the entire team play together. Not one and it certainly doesn’t appear that it will happen for the entire season now that Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is out until Mid March. Chiarelli may get a few games at the end of the season if he’s lucky. It’s almost unbelievable the bad luck this team has experienced over the last few seasons. Continue reading »

Jan 222016
 

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Jan 202016
 

Deep-Thoughts-Hulu

  1. No RNH in the lineup gives management and fans a look at what life without a 3rd center that can slot into the top 6 looks like. So far, I am not a fan of the image. Please don’t trade Nuge. But, if you must, make sure you get back a legit number one RHD.
  2. The Oilers have been waiting for some draft picks and low priced players to add some size and grit to their line-up that can move up and down the top 9 if need be. It looks like Kassian, Pakarinen and Khaira will be just that.
  3. I hope Nilsson finds his form again. It would be nice to have two goalies signed for the next couple of years for a small dollar amount.
  4. Talbot has been fantastic, but, I am shocked that he got the dollars that he did. Dubnyk was a Vezina nominee last year and their deals are comparable from a cap hit perspective. He’s been great so, I hope that pays dividends.
  5. On the topic of goaltenders, I hope the way it plays out is that Nilsson shakes back into form and signs a 2 year deal worth about $1 million per season. Then, next season, Brossoit plays so well that the Oilers have no choice but to deal Nilsson in the off-season for more help where they need it. No need to rush Brossoit, but he is knocking on the door.
  6. At the beginning of 2014-15 I would have identified the team needs as this:
    1. Center depth
    2. Defensemen
    3. Goaltending
    4. Size and grit in the top 9

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