My take on the Stortini waiving..

By , February 1, 2011 7:05 pm

Stortini waived by the Edmonton Oilers

Stortini waived by the Edmonton Oilers


I’ve always been a fan of Stortini. It always sucks to see these guys go (and let’s face it, at best, he’ll be going to Oklahoma City.. at worst, he’ll get claimed) because they generally put a lot into the community. And quite frankly, Stortini definitely did his part.

There was a time where I thought Stortini would be a key part of our rebuild, and I think many (although definitely not all) of you thought the same. He showed a lot of work ethic, he was a decent skater and a solid hitter, and he rarely took bad penalties or gave you the feeling it was a bad idea to have him on the ice. He also was known as a leader-type (perhaps leader by example might be a better description though).

However, on the bad side, his fighting ability is what most would consider average at the best of times. He needed motivation on a semi-frequent basis (in the form of a benching or two). And lastly, while I doubt this was the case, he looked a little complacent in his play and comfortable in his position. His contributions in a game dropped off dramatically. No longer was he agitating opponents and getting them off their game, and no longer was he running rampant, hitting everything in sight.

It’s no secret that he entered Tom Renney’s doghouse quite early on and struggled up until today to get out of it. His days were numbered. Hemsky makes his return tomorrow (by the sounds of it), and the Oilers needed to free up room on their playing roster. So the choices were quite limited. They could have waived players with promise like Reddox (which is a bad idea). They could have demoted a solid player that is a part of their long term like Omark or Paajarvi (not an overly bad idea at all). They could have waived someone else like Jason Strudwick (too well liked by this organization), Steve MacIntyre (who actually fills the need of fighter better than anyone on the team) or J.F. Jacques (a fan non-favorite, it seems, who, this year, has shown just enough potential one night to make you forget the other 3 nights he’s invisible).

I think Stortini’s demotion/waiving was the right choice. I hope he clears though, as I think he could be a strong addition to Oklahoma City.

At any rate, I don’t think this is a huge loss to the team if he’s claimed. Our entire fourth line needs to be revisited. With 3 potential high-flying scoring lines, we need one very solid defensive line. That means no more J.F. Jacques (a player I really like because of his physical abilities), no more Colin Fraser (what does he bring to the table?), and no more Stortini. Steve MacIntyre is a question mark for me as he does fill a need. I think in some ways, Tom Renney is as much to blame for MacIntyre’s phasing-out as anything. In some ways, I think Renney’s style has phased out all 3 of the “tough guys”.

It’s LONG time for Renney and Tambellini to get on the same page though. I’ve thought for a while now that we really need to make our 4th line a defensive-specialist line. I’d go hard for Konopka, as I’ve mentioned several times, to be our 4th line center, as he can actually play regular PK minutes. As for the wings, look for any penalty-killers that might be available in free agency. Liam Reddox could also be a guy that we put on one of the wings here on line 4. The other slot should definitely be given to a high-profile PKer. The all goon like works if we’ve got defensive players scattered throughout our ranks, but we don’t.

What are your thoughts on the Stortini waiving?

What do you think about Stortini being waived?

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28 Responses to “My take on the Stortini waiving..”

  1. mrgod2u says:

    @TSNRyanRishaug: Zach Stortini on waivers.

  2. NorwegianOiler says:

    Between Jacqo, BigMac and Storts, it’s Stortini who gets cut first? Hmmm…neither have been particularly useful, but at least Stortini have had good stretches.

  3. dawgtoy says:

    Strange, just read on the Oiler Report that there was interest in Stortini? I’d have traded Stortini and waived Jacques, if that was in fact truthful. At least Omark and Reddox can now officially stay.

  4. Racki says:

    NorwegianOiler: If you set the bar at who is good enough to be part of a winning future, Foster and Fraser are not making the cut for me. If we are talking about who are keeping their head above water in a sinking ship, they are still treading water, if only barely.
    Tambellini’s success is found in the establishment of a solid affiliate in Oklahoma, to be sure. Taking the AHL team seriously is a major step forward for us, and I am happy to see a lot of our draftees together in one place. The veteran acqusitions have been refreshing as well.
    To me, Tambellini has done nothing to really damage our NHL team, but nothing to improve it either. His defining moments are coming up this summer and the next, though. As I have said, if he is chief of a playoff team within two years, he has failed. I half expect another top 10 pick next season, but the year after that better look vastly different from the past seasons!
    I am glad Eberle’s back and that Hemmer’s returning!

    N.O.: on Foster/Fraser, I’m not talking about how they panned out. Obviously both of these guys are not fit to stick on our club. I’m just saying that there was a conscious effort to fill a need, and it didn’t work out, but it could have if those two players were what Tambo thought they were.

    Other peeps: Wow, Stortini waived.. I’m surprised. Jacques has been looking a bit better lately, so I guess that played a part. He’s scored a couple, and that might be clouding Renney’s eyes with “saw him good” memories. I think Stortini played himself out of a job though. He hasn’t brought anything to the table at all this year, and has been benched a lot because of that.

  5. chucker says:

    I guess there was no market for him, otherwise he wouldn’t be on waivers. The guy was truly embarrassing though. Something’s gotta give with all these plugs.

  6. otto says:

    There was a point last year where it looked like Stortini was improving but, in the end, I’m glad they got rid of him. I think he tapped his limit and that limit is definitely AHL level.

  7. Racki says:

    The funny thing is, he did seem to look like he could be a useful NHLer last year and the years before. But consistency is definitely a big issue. Hopefully they get smart and replace these current 4th liners with guys who are serviceable players. People that can actually play a PK, like your 4th line should be able to do.

  8. mrgod2u says:

    Awwww man…. Now who is Big Mac going to stand around and watch take a beating…?

    Seriously, this has been a long time coming. He had his upward swing for a while and definitely played his way onto the team for a while, BUT he has easily played himself off the team as of late.

    Next steps are to see if any of the rest of the trash can be dealt for 6th round picks. Then deal Penner or Hemsky at the deadline. Hopefully draft twice in the top 10 and then fill in the blanks with defensive players players who can play the PK, and/or win a faceoff. Buy one more decent shut-down d-man if FA and hope next year is a brighter place.

  9. Racki says:

    I still caution against dealing Penner only because he’s one of few players we have with both size and skill (and good skill at that). Plus he’s decent 2-way. But I do get why people are considering his trade. Hemsky, well, I love the guy, but I think there will come a time where he won’t be the focus here anymore. We might not be there yet though, so maybe next year is a better time to make that trade if we want to. I wonder though if teams would rather have him as a “rental” or as a 2-year “risk” (although I don’t see him as a risk).

    Anyways, I didn’t think I would say it, because I was always a fan, but good thing they’ve waived (presumably for reason of re-assignment) Stortini. That’s a step in the right direction. Work ethic is nice, but results are far better. Stand up guy though, so I hope for the best for him.

  10. zackman35 says:

    Its odd, I remember some people saying a few seasons ago that Storts could one day be captain of the team and now he has been waived. I think this has a lot to do with T-REN being the coach, because Storts seemed to assume his role quite well last year under Quinn and played his best under Mac.

    I feel bad for the guy, he has a huge heart and has great character but just couldn’t fill his role effectively as an agitator on the ice (where it counts). I wonder if he’ll change his fighting style in the A, good addition to the Barons I suppose.

    I’m still young and have only paid close attention to hockey these last few seasons now but I think I’m getting a feel of how short an NHL career can be for some guys.

  11. John says:

    zackman35: Its odd, I remember some people saying a few seasons ago that Storts could one day be captain of the team and now he has been waived. I think this has a lot to do with T-REN being the coach, because Storts seemed to assume his role quite well last year under Quinn and played his best under Mac. I feel bad for the guy, he has a huge heart and has great character but just couldn’t fill his role effectively as an agitator on the ice (where it counts). I wonder if he’ll change his fighting style in the A, good addition to the Barons I suppose. I’m still young and have only paid close attention to hockey these last few seasons now but I think I’m getting a feel of how short an NHL career can be for some guys.

    Yah, it’s too bad that the guys with the best attitude & greatest amount of heart usually have the most precarious careers! I suppose it’s because they know they don’t have enough natural talent to be shoe-in’s for prosperous careers so they treat every year like it’s their last! That’s exactly why Jonesy better get re-signed ;)

  12. Racki says:

    The problem is that they have to keep playing that way, or they’ll quickly be exposed as players that hold little value. I think that’s *partially* what happened with Stortini. As I mentioned above, I also don’t think Renney used him to his max potential, nor MacIntyre either. It’s not something I can really prove though.. perhaps these guys just didn’t get the message or something.

  13. zackman35 says:

    I’ll always remember Storts for this fight.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=06-wO6WPS70

    As for the forth line…

    Carcillo – Konopka – Call-up/4rth line plug

    I’ve switched my mind for drafting Landeskog over Couturier (would much rather have Couturier) but could you imagine the line of…

    Carcillo – Konopka – Landeskog ?

    On a side note, not too many forth line right wings come to mind…

  14. Racki says:

    First, would love Carcillo.. but he’ll be an RFA, and I’d have to guess that we won’t have chance of grabbing him from the Flyers.. but his type would be great, since he can actually play regular shifts.

    Going through the list of UFA RW’ers.

    What about Scottie Upshall (6’0 187 lbs)? I think he plays both wings, and is from Fort Mac. Plays a decent 2-way game and is physical. 6’0, 187 lbs.

    Joel Ward (6’1″ 218 lbs) has size, and can play the PK (Although apparently he doesn’t use his size effectively).

    Boyd Gordon (6’0 195 lbs) – “Is a great defensive forward, solid face-off man and a hard worker on the ice. Is feisty and a natural leader. Can play either center or wing.”

    Fredrik Sjostrom (6’1″ 218 lbs) – “Has a terrific combination of speed and defensive instincts. Is willing to take a hit in order to make a play. Kills penalties very well and can line up on either side of center.”

    Btw, I’ll point out that “Doublecross” is a potential UFA this off-season.

    SO just throwing it out there:

    Glencross – Konopka – Upshall/Gordon

    I think Landeskog with Carcillo and Konopka would be a total waste of talent though. Landeskog (if we draft him) should probably be playing with some skill forwards.

    Edit: Tomas Kopecky (6’3 203 lbs) is another 2-way RWer to consider.

  15. Racki says:

    Oh Oiler fan favorite Arron Asham is also a UFA (RWer). Of course I wouldn’t consider him in the elite-PKer category at all, but he might fit in the Carcillo-lite category.

  16. Bostonoiler says:

    I actually like Stortini from day one, and remember getting made fun of on the old OMB saying that he would be a good player one day. Thought I was gonna be right about that too. This is the right move by the Oilers, Storts simply didn’t bring enough to the table. Hopefully this is a sign of things to come, and players didn’t don’t bring enough to the table (Fraser, JFJ, even Foster) will be moved.

    Glad that Reddox is staying up tho, he has impressed me and I think he does in fact have a future with the Oil.

    As for the 4th line, I hate Carcillo, but would love him in Edmonton. Glenx is a guy I’d welcome back with open arms, and of course Konopka is a guy I really like, and think we can get. Ask Snow if he like Gilbert Brule, man I would love that trade.

    I’m looking forward to the deadline/draft/month of July to see the rest of the moves take place.

  17. Racki says:

    Konopka is UFA at the end of the year, no need to trade for him. Doesn’t mean we’ll sign him, but we shouldn’t give up a player for a contract that is about to expire.

  18. B.C.B. says:

    Brule for Konopka would be a great trade. It clears us of a crappy contract, and give us a chance to sign Konopka before anyone else. If we increased Konopka’s salary to a million dollars, we would still be saving money (0.85 Million next year). Plus it couldn’t hurt the entertainment level of watching hockey games. Maybe I just hate Brule: never like him.

  19. chucker says:

    HF has a thread about Brule’s health. Not sure what to think of it quite honestly. He’s been “sick” for a while now. Hope he’s okay.

  20. Racki says:

    Yah he’s been out a long time. This isn’t Flu anymore. His first day out due to “illness” was December 20th. Then he returned for 4 games, and again fell ill on the 7th. That’s a month he’s been sick.

  21. LateNightOilFan says:

    So I put in a 12 hour work day yesterday and completely missed the Stortini news, and now I see he cleared. I guess it doesn’t surprise me. I wonder now if his stint with the Oilers was his NHL time of glory and if he’ll get another chance in the off-season with another team.

    B.C.B. & BO – Re Brule/Konopka – why do you think Garth Snow would do that trade? Brule has had some moments of brilliance but has some consistency issues. There are Isles fans that don’t care too much for Konopka (mostly because of ill-timed penalties), but he seems to fit into a good role with grit for the Isles. I think management likes him and will try to re-sign him. Also, Brule can’t replace Konopka’s faceoff ability – Konopka has 600 more draws on the season than Brule at a better %.

    chucker/Racki – sounds like mono doesn’t it?

  22. Racki says:

    LNOF: Think Brule was making out with Mike Comrie last year? Maybe he borrowed his toothbrush..

  23. Racki says:

    Here’s some real info on Brule’s health BTW (from the Edmonton Sun):

    “Gilbert Brule, who’s been out since Jan. 6 with a variety of maladies (ribs, spleen, ankle and now flu) was at the rink Wednesday. “I was throwing up every day,” he said of his recent illness. “But I’m feeling a lot better now.” He still has to go in for more blood work to see what hit him.”

  24. chucker says:

    @LNOF, could be mono. I had it when I was 29 and it put me out for about 9 months, 60lbs and a terrible health challenge. Mono as an adult is very serious and brutal to go through. He mentioned his spleen, so that raises that flag for sure.

  25. Racki says:

    As expected, Stortini is officially a Baron now.

    Who’s next once Brule or Eberle is back?

  26. Bostonoiler says:

    To be honest Racki, I think its now between JFJ and Colin Fraser as to who goes next. I think to be honest it will be JFJ. Something just tells me he will go next. He has never really done what was thought of him.

    Glad to see Stortini with the Barons as I think he might be able to help the Barons out. I just hope he goes out and gives it 100% every shift down there too. He will play out the rest of the season then sign elsewhere over the summer. Cross off one more contract.

  27. zackman35 says:

    RE Racki: Yeah I saw a few of those guys, Upshall was the guy that stuck out for me for some reason. How is the age on the other guys though? I was looking lower on the payroll/30 and under.

    Re Brule: Spleen, I’m no doctor but I’m in my third PSIO class now and that’s not good. I can’t remember exactly what happens there but something with RBC’s and filtration? Chucker can answer it a lot better than I can. :razz:

    And I’m not too sure about Zenon, other teams may buy into him for the playoffs. He’s known for his fighting but more importantly his success in the dot. Sounds like a great 4rth line add for the post season, I can see him in a Flyers jersey actually. Trading for him might actually may not be that bad of an idea, although I’m not sure what the Isle’s would want.

  28. Racki says:

    Bostonoiler: To be honest Racki, I think its now between JFJ and Colin Fraser as to who goes next. I think to be honest it will be JFJ. Something just tells me he will go next. He has never really done what was thought of him.
    Glad to see Stortini with the Barons as I think he might be able to help the Barons out. I just hope he goes out and gives it 100% every shift down there too. He will play out the rest of the season then sign elsewhere over the summer. Cross off one more contract.

    Anyone else get the feeling that they were trying to showcase JFJ tonight for a trade? Ahead of Penner on the depth chart…. PK time for Jacques? Really??

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