Monday Morning Standings – Round 2

By , April 28, 2011 8:36 am

Another Bond lady...


And no rest for the wicked…round 2 starts tonight!

Round 1 of these playoffs had to have been the most exciting since the legendary spring of ’06. Only thing that would have made it better was if Chi-town could have finished that amazing comeback. Round 2 will need to be epic to match that awesomeness…but with a Bruins/Flyers series and Red Wings/Sharks series it should be pretty good.

Anyways, I’ll try and force Racki to put up another prediction post, but if not I’m picking Detroit, Nashville, Washington and Philadelphia all in 6 games. In the last prediction post, I nailed the east (maybe missed the number of games here and there) but absolutely booted the west…maybe I should start watching more western conference games! Damn eastern biases.

EDITED BY RACKI: Since I’m too lazy to put up another prediction post, I will pick the following:
Predators in 6, Detroit in 6, Washington in 5, Philadelpha in 7… exactly what I went with in HL’s pool.

Nothing new on the Oilers front except for some picks being signed to ELC’s. Can’t wait for the draft.

Wait! Eberle and Dubnyk are playing for Canada at the WC. Eberle got a point in the exhibition against France while Dubnyk looked a little shaky from what I saw of the highlights. Lets go Canada!

The rest of the MMS:

In other league news, lots of suspensions and questionable hits this playoff round. I don’t know if it is just the fact that we are looking for it now, but I think this is the most suspensions in a playoff round that has been handed out ever (Kunitz, Downie, Ryan, Stoll, and Ruutu (does Cooke count); plus Torres, Lucic, Richards and Bickell all had close calls).

I also love how no one in Vancouver will ever have faith in Luongo ever again…even his coach. Well played Vigneault. Oh, and Gillis is a little whining bitch.

How awesome is Bolland…while out the Canucks (and Sedins) looked unstoppable…he comes in and single-handedly shuts them down while putting up mad points.

Penner didn’t have the greatest playoffs. Sometimes some players just work out for certain teams and not others…look how often the Oilers are on the other side of that trade. Maybe this shows how our luck is starting to turn?

Bobby Ryan goal…holy shit. Again, work sucks so I can’t link to it, but google it. Wow.

Datsyuk…his whole playoff series. Wow.

Ference gives the Habs fans the finger…awesome.

Bryzgalov hates Winnipeg. At least Edmonton won’t be the asshole of the league anymore. Thanks Winnipeg!

And finally (I think), the league signed a 2 billion dollar/10 year deal with NBC/Versus. This works out to 200 mil per year which is up from the 78 mil per of the current deal.

Some trophy nominations have been put out too:
Vezina:
- Luongo
- Rinne
- Thomas (My pick for winner, just because of the record season)
Masterton:
- Emery (My pick for winner)
- Laperriere
- Langkow
Norris:
- Lidstrom
- Chara
- Weber (My pick for winner…dude is a beast and that is one righteous beard already)
Byng:
- Lidstrom (my pick for winner…D never wins and Lidstrom deserves this year after year)
- St. Louis
- Eriksson
Selke:
- Toews (my pick for the win)
- Datsyuk
- Kesler
GM of the Year:
- Yzerman (My pick for winner)
- Gillis
- Poile
Calder:
- Couture
- Grabner
- Skinner (My pick for winner)

Now some pool news: Picks gotta be in for both Hemmerlady’s and the POTF sportsnet pools ASAP. Again, passwords for both are potf and the CBC one is called “Hemmerlady’s Pool”, and the Sportsnet one is just a group called Putting on the Foil.

Here are the standings for the pools so far (work sucks and considers both gambling/fantasy sports bad and block them so this is from my phone…any problems just let me know):

Sportsnet POTF:
Crott – 69 points (who is this?)
geaner33 – 68 points (again, who is this?)
Racki – 68 points
zackman35 – 67 points
hemmerlady – 66 points
BringBackKlima – 65 points
d0nkey_punch – 63 points
mrgod2u – 60 points
sln0069 (me) – 59 points (for future reference don’t pick Phoenix as an upset)
chuckerspuckers – 51 points

Hemmerlady’s Pool:
Zackman35 – 90 points
hemmerlady – 84 points
potf_steveo – 0 points (<- this is what happens when you miss the deadline people!)
M&O – 0 points
Racki – hasn’t joined yet cause he’s scared of losing

Oh, and the OKC Barons lost in 6 to Hamilton. Boooooo. Well at least Omark now can play for Sweden. However this playoff experience should be good for the kids that did go down.

Finally if I missed anything, or you want to help me out and link some vids just add to the comments.

92 Responses to “Monday Morning Standings – Round 2”

  1. LateNightOilFan says:

    Bostonoiler: Well I think its safe to say I won’t be going to another Bruins game. The fans are pretty classless there. Last night my younger brother wanted to see his flyers so we went in, and after the game we were attacked. He never said anything (mainly because I told him not too, its not worth it) and we had things thrown at us, people getting in his face and mine also. I ended up getting into it with one guy who decided to come face to face with my brother and I went at him. There was an older man in his late 70′s on a cane wearing an old flyers hat, real nice guy and they were throwing stuff at him. They guy is almost 80 and they are throwing stuff at him. I have no respoect for a fanbase like that, personally it sucks t ohave to say I’m from a city with such classless scum like that. There are lines you don’t cross. Its ok to tell someone Flyers suck or something, but to get in their face and throw stuff at them, especially at an older age, and in my brother’s case a younger age, its way out of line and wrong. I just want to point that out as I think its an issue that shouldn’t be happening at a game. I had little respect for the Bruins to start with, I now have none.

    That’s pretty sad BO, I’d like to think it was just a playoff-frenzied crowd but I have my doubts. I hear Flyers fans aren’t much better in their own rink either. Unfortunately it’s the loud obnoxious ones that ruin it for others and leave a lasting, negative impression for younger kids like your brother. It’s really too bad.

    However, highlight of the playoffs for me is the play of Roli and the Bolts! God I hope this is his year!

  2. chucker says:

    LateNightOilFan: That’s pretty sad BO, I’d like to think it was just a playoff-frenzied crowd but I have my doubts. I hear Flyers fans aren’t much better in their own rink either. Unfortunately it’s the loud obnoxious ones that ruin it for others and leave a lasting, negative impression for younger kids like your brother. It’s really too bad.However, highlight of the playoffs for me is the play of Roli and the Bolts! God I hope this is his year!

    You hear more and more of these stories these days. Lots have these sorts of stories from Canucks fans too, but I think it’s getty pretty widespread throughout sports. Hooligans.

    Sorry to hear that BO. Going to a game is entertainment. It’s dishearening to hear people act like this.

  3. Bostonoiler says:

    There isn’t a rumor stating this, but I was thinking, the Caps were swept again and Backstrom is under fire. Would you deal the 1st overall pick and cogliano for Backstrom in Washington?

  4. John says:

    Bostonoiler: There isn’t a rumor stating this, but I was thinking, the Caps were swept again and Backstrom is under fire. Would you deal the 1st overall pick and cogliano for Backstrom in Washington?

    That’s a tough one! I think it depends on what route management is thinking of going at the draft; if they are leaning towards RNH then your proposal might be viable since they would obviously be hoping for a good forward & Backstrom would guarantee that. If they are leaning towards a potential top defenceman ala Larsson then I suspect the Oil would not be willing to part with that pick for any forward short of Ovechkin, Malkin, or Taveras!

    What if we could pick up Backstrom for Hemsky, Teubert, + a later pick? I think I’d pull the trigger on that one :)

  5. Racki says:

    Nik Backstrom – 6’1, 210lbs center who has hit 100pts already at the young age of 22 (at the time)… albeit with Ovechkin, and put up respectable to very good numbers outside of that. Yah, sorry, but if you’re the Caps, you’d be crazy to give him up.

    From the Oilers standpoint, you do that deal in a heart beat. Proven elite player (in Backstrom) for a “maybe elite” player?

    I don’t see the Caps having any interest though.

  6. Bostonoiler says:

    Like I said I’m in no way banking on it happening, but change has to come in Washington after that series loss, and a lot of people are jumping on Backstrom’s back because he was shut-down by New York and Tampa saying he doesn’t try and has no heart. If a center like him becomes avalible you have to listen, he is an unreal talent. Again I’m not banking on it by any means, but its definatly something that seems somewhat possible that Tambi would at least make a phone call about it.

  7. chucker says:

    I’d do that deal in a heartbeat.

  8. Racki says:

    Bostonoiler:
    Like I said I’m in no way banking on it happening, but change has to come in Washington after that series loss, and a lot of people are jumping on Backstrom’s back because he was shut-down by New York and Tampa saying he doesn’t try and has no heart. If a center like him becomes avalible you have to listen, he is an unreal talent. Again I’m not banking on it by any means, but its definatly something that seems somewhat possible that Tambi would at least make a phone call about it.

    Well of course you have to listen, because it would be lopsided in our favor, if you ask me… :lol:

    Many-a-euro has been accused of having no heart without warrant. Probably the case here too. I couldn’t see Washington wanting to do it though, like I said. From an Edmonton stand point, you “do that deal in a heartbeat” as Chucker said, which makes me believe that the other side doesn’t ;)

  9. chucker says:

    Racki: Well of course you have to listen, because it would be lopsided in our favor, if you ask me… Many-a-euro has been accused of having no heart without warrant. Probably the case here too. I couldn’t see Washington wanting to do it though, like I said. From an Edmonton stand point, you “do that deal in a heartbeat” as Chucker said, which makes me believe that the other side doesn’t

    There were rumours about Semin at the deadline and well before that as well. Thing is, he only signs one year at a time. I’d be thinking he’s on the list way before Backstrom, but who knows? What are you gonna get for a guy like Semin on a one year deal? Mike Greene might be another guy on the list, but I doubt it. Unless they get a Marc Staal in return type of player.

    Here’s an article from Canoe. http://slam.canoe.ca/Slam/Hockey/NHL/Playoffs/Washington/2011/05/05/18108996.html

  10. hemmerlady says:

    canuckleheads lose game 5…how sad. Was at The Black Frog tonight – a fair number of ultimately dejected Nucks fans in attendance but there were a few Predators holdouts. Preds (or possibly just anti-Canuck?) fans were taunting “loooooosers” on everyone’s way out the door. When they said it to me, I shot back: “I don’t care. I’m an Oiler fan!” and they all laughed.

  11. zackman35 says:

    Well it sounds like that Stu and team could be very likely picking RNH first overall come draft day.
    http://oilersnation.com/2011/5/9/fthm-vii-ryan-nugent-hopkins

    I know it’s not too much to go from but going off the small snipits from Stu’s choice of words it seems like the the top three selections of the Oilers would probably go in this order…

    1) Nugent-Hopkins
    2) Couturier
    3) Larsson

    If we pick RNH first overall does this mean we can trade LA’s pick + small skilled forward for a better first round pick and what would be a likely return?

  12. Racki says:

    Interesting. I sure hope he ends up playing center. The “strength” being an issue is a big issue, of course, unless he shows the ability to build muscle mass. That’s where the combine comes in.

    Anyways, without a doubt, the Oilers will try and move a forward with the L.A. pick to try and move up. My first guess is that maybe they might move Cogliano since he stood out a bit towards the end of the year, but maybe not.

    You have to figure that they’ll try and land a d-man with that 2nd pick. If they somehow manage to do it, I’d be very happy with Dougie Hamilton.. right hand d.. has good size and put up good numbers. Seems like a guy we could use here. But he’s projected to go top-5, so that would take a lot to get him.

    I talked before about trying to target the teams that are in “win now” mode. I think New Jersey is always an example.. possibly Atlanta… there are quite a few teams in the top 10 area that I wouldn’t say necessarily need to rebuild or keep rebuilding. It would take a lot more than Cogliano, of course, to move into the top 5.

    If we traded Hemsky and the 1st to move in there, I would think we would want something more back too. Would you trade Penner + Hemsky for a shot at a good player? Hard to say.. there are no guarantees in drafting, so that could backfire and be a disaster. But I would probably consider quite a few names in a package with LA’s first for a top end pick.

  13. hemmerlady says:

    …and the Canucks get it done. Interesting to see if they will face SJ or the Wings in the Conf. final.

  14. chucker says:

    Couturier. RNH would be a mistake. We need big players who can play not more smurfs. Then again, what do I know.

  15. Racki says:

    Chucker: Agreed we need more size. But I guess on the flip side of things… if you think of our core forward/winger group as Hall, Paajarvi, Eberle and Omark… Hall and Paajarvi both have decent size (it certainly isn’t an issue for either). Eberle and Omark are both strong on the puck and evasive. Perhaps it wouldn’t be so bad, and maybe we could fill the need for size in another way. But I do hear what you’re saying and have been saying it myself too. But I just am on the BPA-train as of late. I would hate to give up on a Zack Parise and pick for a Marc Pouliot again. I don’t think Couturier is a Pouliot though. But perhaps RNH is really that far ahead of everyone else and that makes him impossible to pass up.

    If we’re talking equals though.. that changes things.

  16. zackman35 says:

    Oh don’t get me wrong Chucker, I’m still on the Couturier train. Although like Racki said the combine should help in the decision process. That reminds me… I wanted to do a small series or at least a write up about drafting players and more specifically the combine. Stu mentioned his strength being a concern, in this area I’m curious to see how well RNH does on the BW Bench test and the vert. jump. Although it will be a two part argument… “if he can put up those numbers at that size imagine what he could be like when his body matures yada yada”.

  17. Racki says:

    Let me know if you want me to post an article of yours up, Zack. That goes for anyone else too…

  18. chucker says:

    At least RNH is tall and has the potential to fill out. My guess is it will come down to the combine too. The other thing is that is we draft him, we always have the option of trading others if need be. This is a tough one for Stu. The top four all seem fairly equal or at about the same level, but not all in the same way if that makes sense.

    We really have not talked a lot about Larsson. He looks like one of those guys you will regret not taking. Again, the combine will be key, but how many chances do you get to draft a defender with his potential. I know they develop slower and all, but man, what a great chance.

  19. NorwegianOiler says:

    I think the focus on pounds and inches may be taken too far, particulary in regard to draft rankings. Clearly, this year’s draft is much more unpredictable than last year, which probably forces us to grab at any and all differences we can measure. There seems to be an artificial divide somewhere between players below ca. 6’0″-6’1″ and those that are taller. Similarly, I perceive there to be a divide between players above and below the 180-190lb range. It’s amplified during drafts, but continues to be too much of a factor when assessing older talent as well. Obviously there’s a correlation between size and strength, but there are many examples of small(er) and light(er) players that show great strength on the puck, swiftness and grit without being the prototypical 6’3″ robot. I would be more concerned with how these players play, how their strength and size is used.

  20. Ktown says:

    NorwegianOiler:
    Obviously there’s a correlation between size and strength, but there are many examples of small(er) and light(er) players that show great strength on the puck, swiftness and grit without being the prototypical 6’3″ robot. I would be more concerned with how these players play, how their strength and size is used.

    I have to agree with you, NO – I think Omark is a great example to prove your point. On paper, I believe he and Gagner are very similar body sizes (looks up on Oilers’ site – ah, actually, it says Omark is an inch shorter and giving up 17 lbs – 5’11, 191 for Sam/5’10, 174 for Linus), yet Omark is exceptionally strong on the puck. I think it is a fair assessment from this past season that at times (for opposing players) Linus was maddeningly tough to shake off a puck, whereas Sammy tends to get pushed around a bit.

    I’m making assumptions, but if RNH is truly on top of the scouting list, I would think that people have observed how he manages the puck and how he plays in the ‘tough’ areas. While he’s certainly no power forward (a la Lecavalier), I can’t imagine he’s a pushover on the puck. And, at 6′, I wouldn’t go so far as to call him a smurf. At 6′, 164lbs, possibly a bit of a beanpole, but at 17 I would also expect him to put on at least 15-20lbs (of natural mass – i.e. not inhibit his game) by the time he fills out.

    Nope some guys are tough on the puck (Omark) and some guys never use their size (Penner?). All the difference in a player can be made in the amount of effort they’re willing to lay on the ice when they’re out there…

    FYI – Liam (little Bulldog) Reddox: 5’11, 178lbs. Skill and talent notwithstanding, this kid plays above his size as well.

  21. Racki says:

    I think in the West though, strength is fairly important. It’s pretty easy to disappear here and be ineffective if you don’t have the strength and work ethic. Being strong isn’t a magic number though, as N.O. pointed out. You don’t suddenly become strong when you hit 200 lbs. But I don’t think it’s something you can shrug off and not put some thought into. But again, that’s where I think the combine comes in handy… finding out what limit these kids have.

    All in all though, as I’ve said for a while, I wouldn’t ignore any player in the draft because of certain things like that (lack of strength, which Magnificent Stu also mentioned… so it’s not just a case of him being typecast as weaker because of his size.. he is weaker), or a specific position. Those things are what you use when deciding between two very similarly skilled kids (I mean of the same level of skill) as a tie breaker. I think we’ll pick RNH, which definitely would be fine by me if he really is the BPA. That’s what it really is all about.. selecting the BPA. RNH and his size issues.. Couturier and his questionable skating… Larsson and his likely long learning curve…. they all have their risks. But really, we have to think about which player will be here in the long term and what they will look like then. RNH could put on the pounds…. Couturier could become a better skater… Larsson could develop into a blueline force.

    It’s a tough job that Stu has! But I trust in him and his choice. Can’t wait for draft day.

  22. Ktown says:

    Racki:
    I think in the West though, strength is fairly important. It’s pretty easy to disappear here and be ineffective if you don’t have the strength and work ethic. Being strong isn’t a magic number though, as N.O. pointed out. You don’t suddenly become strong when you hit 200 lbs. But I don’t think it’s something you can shrug off and not put some thought into. But again, that’s where I think the combine comes in handy… finding out what limit these kids have.

    All in all though, as I’ve said for a while, I wouldn’t ignore any player in the draft because of certain things like that (lack of strength, which Magnificent Stu also mentioned… so it’s not just a case of him being typecast as weaker because of his size.. he is weaker), or a specific position. Those things are what you use when deciding between two very similarly skilled kids (I mean of the same level of skill) as a tie breaker. I think we’ll pick RNH, which definitely would be fine by me if he really is the BPA. That’s what it really is all about.. selecting the BPA. RNH and his size issues.. Couturier and his questionable skating… Larsson and his likely long learning curve…. they all have their risks. But really, we have to think about which player will be here in the long term and what they will look like then. RNH could put on the pounds…. Couturier could become a better skater… Larsson could develop into a blueline force.

    It’s a tough job that Stu has! But I trust in him and his choice. Can’t wait for draft day.

    But if we go with Couturier instead of RNH, then my whole dream/prediction goes out the window…. And I’m still holding out hope on the Reese Witherspoon angle.

  23. Racki says:

    Ktown: But if we go with Couturier instead of RNH, then my whole dream/prediction goes out the window….And I’m still holding out hope on the Reese Witherspoon angle.

    Hahaha I’m definitely not saying we should abandon RNH at all! :P Your dream is still alive…

  24. chucker says:

    In all likelihood, all three of these guys will be great picks, just for different reasons. It’s entirely likely that we are all splitting hairs. I will be very confident in Stu’s decision no matter who we get.

  25. Racki says:

    Yah I think you’re right. And I think there are at least 4 names being tossed around for #1 overall.

    I have to admit, I’m buying into Couturier a bit more lately too. Hard to not like a guy who was that good at even strength, was good on the PP, and also could PK, and has good size. The skating is an issue, for sure though, but we’ve seen guys overcome that, as well as heard guys called bad skaters that worked out pretty well in the end. Sometimes the whole “bad skater” thing strikes me as a way of just saying “well, this guy is pretty good at everything.. what’s his worst asset… hmm.. skating, I guess”. He could be a capable skater, but just not Mike Gartner speed, or anything.

    Anyways, I’ve changed my tune about who we should draft about 2 dozen times this year. But again, I’ll just be happy with whatever decision Magnificent Bastard Stu makes.

  26. chucker says:

    Gagner. Was labelled as a bad skater too. I don’t always buy into that type of comment either. Arnott same thing. Same with Smyth. I guess I was the only one who was impressed with him at the WJCs. He reminded me of Getzlaf the year before he got drafted. He really grew the second year at the tourney. Big, good in both ends and physical. Kind of the opposite of all our centers now except Horc.

    Like I said, Stu has my full confidence. One comment about RNH getting so many points on the PP seemed concerning. Couturier put his numbers up in less games with mono. Mono kicks your ass. I think he is the guy.

  27. chucker says:

    BTW, new Sam Roberts is groovy.

  28. john says:

    chucker:
    Gagner. Was labelled as a bad skater too.I don’t always buy into that type of comment either.Arnott same thing. Same with Smyth.I guess I was the only one who was impressed with him at the WJCs.He reminded me of Getzlaf the year before he got drafted.He really grew the second year at the tourney. Big, good in both ends and physical.Kind of the opposite of all our centers now except Horc.

    Like I said, Stu has my full confidence.One comment about RNH getting so many points on the PP seemed concerning. Couturier put his numbers up in less games with mono.Mono kicks your ass.I think he is the guy.

    In regards to Gagner’s skating ability; to this day dude has a hell of a time staying on his feet once he has the puck but I’m not sure if that’s really a skating ability issue or just core & leg strength? At any rate there is a chance he could still improve in those areas over time. Same with Couturier if they go that route. Just don’t want see Tambi get caught up in the Daryl Sutter mindset where he signs big WHL boys just to add size at the expense of skill & speed!

  29. chucker says:

    Gagner does get pushed around and knocked on his ass a lot. I chalk it up to his just not being very strong. He is a very soft player. He is what I am worried about with RNH. Same with Cogliano. He has improved, but he still struggles in my view.

  30. hemmerlady says:

    I get that the majority of folks believe that we should draft the BPA, but just because someone goes 1st overall doesn’t mean that will translate into a hotshot player in the NHL – Jeff Skinner was drafted 7th, and he’s on fire. Seabrook was drafted 14th overall, a little different b/c he’s defense. Who’s to say who the superstar will turn out to be (other than Stu, in whom we trust ?) If RNH is really head and shoulders above the rest of the field then take him, but it doesn’t sound like he is necessarily. Draft rankings can be deceptive, no?

    Fowler has turned out really well so far, was hoping we could steal him last year when he kept getting passed up. I’m still leaning toward Larsson because we need a clinch D-player bad, and haven’t had one since Prongs although he was A.) a vet and B.) a douche. If Stu has a gut feeling about Larsson I hope he goes with it. I know it’s hard to predict how a D will develop in the big league. But we have to take a chance at some point right? If we never get any help on D, we’re sunk.

  31. Ktown says:

    hemmerlady:
    I get that the majority of folks believe that we should draft the BPA, but just because someone goes 1st overall doesn’t mean that will translate into a hotshot player in the NHL – Jeff Skinner was drafted 7th, and he’s on fire. Seabrook was drafted 14th overall, a little different b/c he’s defense. Who’s to say who the superstar will turn out to be (other than Stu, in whom we trust ?) If RNH is really head and shoulders above the rest of the field then take him, but it doesn’t sound like he is necessarily. Draft rankings can be deceptive, no?

    Fowler has turned out really well so far, was hoping we could steal him last year when he kept getting passed up.I’m still leaning toward Larsson because we need a clinch D-player bad, and haven’t had one since Prongs although he was A.) a vet and B.) a douche. If Stu has a gut feeling about Larsson I hope he goes with it. I know it’s hard to predict how a D will develop in the big league. But we have to take a chance at some point right? If we never get any help on D, we’re sunk.

    Not trying to be difficult here, as I’m of the opinion that our defence wasn’t great this year at all. But, I wonder, how bad was our defence when you consider we weren’t winning a lot of faceoffs, and that a large proportion of faceoffs were in the defensive zone this year?

    I’m curious if a better offensive attack and higher (*sigh* exponentially) faceoff success would translate into a better ‘looking’ defensive corps.

    Again, not saying we don’t need a stud on D, but just curious if the circumstances didn’t make some of the D’s average shortcomings exceptionally noticeable.

    PS – how do you guys spell defence? defense? apparently the spell checker likes it with an ‘s’…. Don’t call the spelling police, please.

  32. dawgtoy says:

    For me the bottom line is simple, a defenseman is a commodity that can be traded for or acquired through free agency. First line centers are not easily traded for and very expensive to acquire through free agency, and to come here would need overpayment. So therefore IMO, a center is a must for this selection. If that should be RNH, Huberdeau, Couturier ,or Strome …. I’ll let an expert who has seen them all play decide. From what I’ve read and studied, RNH will be an Oiler on draft day. The combination of skill and speed on display between Hall and Hopkins will be magical. Again, simply my thoughts.

  33. hemmerlady says:

    @Ktown: yeah it’s fair to say that the team was “the suck” pretty much all around (exceptions: timbits & Doobie) but my point was the D problem is a key issue that we’ve had trouble with for a long time. In fairness, we’ve been having trouble everywhere (centre as well!) for quite some time so I think I see what you’re saying. Edit: +exception: Teddy Peckman.

    p.s. defence is American spelling; defense is British/Canadian spelling. Stay true to your roots.

  34. hemmerlady says:

    @dawgtoy: not really trying to argue with you at all. If a D is a commodity then why does it seem so damn difficult for us to acquire one? Tambi=Fail? (I’m sure it’s more complicated than that).

  35. Racki says:

    I wouldn’t at all say a defensemen is an asset that is easy to acquire though, even if it is tougher to pick up a quality centerman. In the draft, we would be hoping on the defenseman being a franchise player, and I wouldn’t say any franchise skater is easily acquired. Now, of course, any of these guys could bust and there’s no guarantee any will be a franchise player, just saying that I wouldn’t overlook a top quality defensman (if that’s what Larsson is.. or someone else) because they’re not quite as difficult to acquire as a top center.

    That all said, I am joining Chucker on the Couturier bandwagon at the moment. There’s just something about a kid his size, with great scoring prowess, solid defensive ability, and the whole mono thing (I mean, that he still managed to put up good numbers despite the mono). Plus there’s the point of his 5-on-5 numbers vs. RNH’s.

    But, anyways, while I think we really do need a big center, I also think our biggest, glaring hole is the defense. Ktown, that’s an interesting point you bring up, and it is possible, but I actually think aside from Whitney, Peckham and Smid, our d-line is pretty mediocre and lacking that “presence” we had when we had Pronger. Having that guy back there would do serious wonders and allow our forwards to take more chances and play “their” game.

    I think we could improve upon the defense on the whole though… meaning, we get a better shutdown d-man type (or two), a starting goaltender that isn’t a fucking invalid, and some quality defensive forwards of the Malhotra ilk (although obviously someone different, since he shunned us). Until all those pieces come into place, I think our defensive game will always be scary and prevent our offense from really breaking out.

  36. John says:

    I’m with Hemmerlady on this one; I would like to see the Oil go off the board a little & pick a Dman like Larsson unless RNH is looking like a surefire rockstar by draft day. Call me a cynic but I don’t agree with the assumption we can grab a top notch Dman through free agency or even via trade; take a look at the track record! Unfortunately the vicious cycle indicates we will have to develop our own acceptably adequate defence & a high calibre goaltender of some sort in order to garner the approval of high profile, free agent Dmen. The way this team sits now all we can look forward to attracting in July is guys who still want decent money but are either at the end of their careers (like Souray) or mid-level players that have been passed over by better teams ala Foster or Vandermeer.

  37. chucker says:

    I’d prefer a guy who can play centre at the NHL level. Couturier seems like the best fit for me. Even Ryan Whitney said “You can always trade for a D man or sign one. You never see a no. 1 centreman get traded with the exception of Joe Thornton.”

  38. Racki says:

    He’s just trying to protect himself from being showed up by a rookie… :P

  39. chucker says:

    There are lots of UFA dmen out there. Not all top stars, but we can get what we need fairly easily I think.

  40. Racki says:

    This year’s crop looks old, expensive and/or injury prone to me. There might be a name or two in there though worth picking though. But I don’t really think of our #1 overall pick as necessarily a guy that should be on the NHL club immediately either, so my personal thoughts are we shouldn’t be avoiding picking a player based on whats available on the market anyways. I’m still all about the BPA… that player just so happens to be Couturier at the moment for me though (although that changes with the wind). But if the BPA was Larsson, I would be backing him for #1 pick.

  41. chucker says:

    The combines will really help a lot this year I think.

  42. Racki says:

    Most definitely. That’s probably where you’ll have to figure that a guy like Couturier will kill, assuming the mono isn’t still bothering him.

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