Break it Down! – Defense (2010/11 Edition)

By , August 27, 2010 2:40 pm

So by googling Smid, look what I found. Apparently they're dating. Atta boy Smid!


Continuing on with my series of posts that break down the Oiler’s different areas, today we look at the defense.

Last year I mentioned how I thought that we had a really strong D-core, and how we had positioned ourselves going forward as well with lots of good youngsters. Well, there are 3 players that are the same. Note I am not including Souray, because he won’t be here (I think).

Lets take a look at what we have so far:

LD/RD
Gilbert/Whitney
Vandermeer/Foster
Smid/Strudwick
Peckham

That group seems to be pretty average. Not terrible by any means, but not the best in the NHL either. I see Gilbert and Whitney kicking ass much like they did last year, and I like the Foster pickup. Smid has been a favorite of mine for a bit now. I don’t hate Vandermeer being there, but I think he should be more of a 5/6 player (as well as Peckham). Strudwick doesn’t deserve to be on the ice in my opinion and we have too many forwards as is, so we can’t move him up there. But who would be replace him with anyways? Chorney and Plante both need more time in the A to get better I think.

Strengths
The top pairing is good. I’ve been high on Gilbert for a couple years now, and by pairing him with Whitney (who played well in Pit, just for some reason couldn’t hack it in Ana) it has given us a good #1 pairing. I would like to see them placed in a more offensive role and not have to depend on them for defensive matching, but you put your best players on the ice against the other teams best players.

Tough. With Vandermeer, Peckham, Smid and Strudwick (I may not like him, but he is tough) this team has a tough defense who won’t back down from fights, and can punish the other teams forwards.

Offense. We have good puck movers back there who can get the puck to the forwards quickly, and help the transition to offense.

Weaknesses
There seems to be no middle tier players in this group. Right now we have the top line, and a bunch of 5/6 d-men (at this point in their careers). I have a feeling that Foster and Smid can make the jump to 3/4 type players but I’m going to have to see it first.

There isn’t much depth in this group. Should there be any injuries (and with this team its more of a when, not if) then we will be bringing up Chorney or Plante and then this D group looks even weaker (especially if its one of the top two that get injured).

Could Use
A defensive defenseman. One that could fill the 3/4 slot while being a stabilizing force back there. Say Jason Smith.

Finally
I find it amazing the swings this team makes from a good group of players (Souray, Visnovsky, Gilbert, Grebber Grabber, Smid, Staios and Strudwick) to an average group (see above). And that is not including the year a few back, where the defense group was a sad sad thing (all young).

I’m not sure what to make of this group. I think they have the ability to be a decent core, and just have to hold the fort until the kids get some experience. Just looking at the forwards its obvious that that is what management wants to do anyways.

On another note, I don’t consider Souray a part of this defense group. He wanted out, and I honestly think Tambellini is doing all that he can to get him out of the way. Only thing that has stopped that from happening is his negative value (which he doesn’t seem to want to admit….although that is all hearsay). But I truly think he will be gone by the time that the season starts.

8 Responses to “Break it Down! – Defense (2010/11 Edition)”

  1. Racki says:

    We may see the likes of Belle and even Petry, briefly here next year.

    Lowetide also posted on OilersNation suggesting Jay McKee as a good target. He’s been on my radar before too. But I think I can say with some certainty that the Oilers won’t be acquiring anyone, except via trade.. and that probably won’t even likely happen.

  2. chucker says:

    Smid is da man!! New fave hockey hottie! What were we talking about?

  3. gr8one says:

    chucker: Smid is da man!!New fave hockey hottie!What were we talking about?

    Indeed.

    http://www.amandavanderpool.com/modeling-portfolio.html

    If only we had Duff back, I just might move back to Edmonton and sign up for habitat for humanity.

  4. chucker says:

    gr8one: Indeed.http://www.amandavanderpool.com/modeling-portfolio.htmlIf only we had Duff back, I just might move back to Edmonton and sign up for habitat for humanity.

    Not to criticize the writers on the site, but I think this photo should be used: http://www.amandavanderpool.com/modeling-portfolio.html Maybe it’s just me?

    EDIT: Crap. The second one with the linguini and but shot.

  5. Steve-O says:

    Gentlemen, your thoroughness in investigating this further impresses me…well done.

  6. Racki says:

    While I agree that there are hotter pics, I like the one Steve-O went with, because it won’t cause me to be shit-canned should a female co-worker walk by while I’m reading this post.

  7. chucker says:

    We’re just out there doing the best we can Steve-O.

    EDIT: Maybe a good one for “Monday Morning Standings” :o

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