My take on Eakins hiring, and Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions.. final round

By , June 11, 2013 7:15 pm
Craig MacTavish handshaking his clone

Craig MacTavish handshaking his clone

So last round’s predictions did not work for me at ALL. I got both winners wrong. Luckily, I still have the Boston Bruins as a team I can stand to win some moola on from some bets I made on Bodog before the playoffs start. If the B’s win it all, I’ll double the money I spent on all my bets combined. Not spectacular, but I’m ahead, and that’s what matters!

Anyways, round 3, I got a big stinking zero right on my predictions. I had the Kings and Penguins. Steve-O managed to get both winners right, although he thought both series would go the distance. Metal & Oil predicted the Bruins correctly, but in 6 games… he had the Kings down as winners over the Hawks, however. Hemmerlady, like me, shit the bed and got nada right with Pens and Kings each winning in 7 as her predictions. 

So, time for the final round of predictions… who ya got?

I’ll take the Bruins in 5. 

In other news, Dallas Eakins was hired as head coach of the Oilers. The only disappointment over this for me is that I was just learning that Krueger is spelled “K-R-U-E-G-E-R” and not “K-R-E-U-G-E-R”… now I have to train my brain that it’s pronounced “Ay-kins” and not “Ee-kins”. I liked Ralph Krueger a lot as coach. I think he didn’t have a good enough preview here, and I hang that all on Steve Tambellini’s inability to provide him with a good enough roster. I don’t mind that he was replaced though because a GM needs to be on the same page as his coach. Krueger’s new-agey coaching style doesn’t fit with what Craig MacTavish wants. Fine by me. Eakins sounds like a guy with a solid grasp on defensive and offensive systems, line matching and other strategies. This was not Krueger’s forte. Both are also known to be good motivators too, so as far as I’m concerned, we stepped ahead in this change.

That all said, a coach can only do so much. I’m not sure many coaches could turn this lineup into a winner. This lineup, save for the top six and a few scattered players, seems to be destined for bottom finishes. I won’t debate whether Tambellini did this by design, or if he was just a terrible GM (although I lean towards the latter). It is what it is. This is the lineup the team has, and in order for Eakins to have any success, MacTavish is really going to have his work cut out for him. But if MacTavish is going to feed a coach players that he thinks are going to work well with the new coach’s team, he’s going to want a coach that’s shares a similar philosophy as him. Therefore, I think this was the right decision to make.

16 Responses to “My take on Eakins hiring, and Stanley Cup Playoff Predictions.. final round”

  1. dawgtoy says:

    I concur. If MacT gives him an NHL caliber roster, he’ll succeed. If Eakins is given the same old mix of crap, likely we’ll see a repeat of the last 7 seasons of futility. The caveat of course is if Tambo would have given Renney or Krueger a decent roster, they would have succeeded as well. I guess I’m trying to convey that IMO it hasn’t been the coaches fault. Hall of Famers couldn’t have succeeded with this mixed bag of youth and useless.

    As for the SCF. Boston all the way. I can’t see this going much past 6.

  2. Racki says:

    Yup, that’s been my thoughts too.. completely wrong mix of guys. I love this team’s top players, especially Hall. But if you look past those guys, there is Horcoff, maybe Jones (Although not so much last year), and then a bunch of guys with really no character at all.

  3. Steve-O says:

    Chi-town in 7

  4. Metal&Oil says:

    Boston in 7

  5. flyfish1168 says:

    Man Dallas looks like and speaks like a hard a$$. That is good. We need to be everything he said in his interview. No more nice guy approach. Accountability or your ice is cut. 200 feet of hockey with pressure on the opponent at every inch of ice.

  6. John says:

    Chicago in 7, based absolutely on the need for an offensive minded style of team to win the cup. There’s already a disturbing trend in the NHL to move back towards big bodies & shutdown, grinding hockey which makes me want to shove a fork in my brain. If Boston wins I fear it will only gain momentum.

    As for Eakins, he definitely instills a certain amount of confidence in the listener. Interesting to see how much input he has going forward in the say of who stays, who goes, & who’s aquired!

  7. Racki says:

    I would think that MacT and Eakins should be pretty connect as far as what the team will need, going forward. So I think it will work well with Eakins coaching and MacT managing.

    I can’t remember who said it, but they did mention that it’s good to have separation between coach and management though at times because a lot of times a coach is focused on “I need this now!!!”, whereas a manager is focused on the big, long term picture. Hopefully they still keep that long term picture in mind during any movement. I’m sure Mact will be fine in that regard.

  8. Racki says:

    Sad news… unconfirmed still, but there is a report out there that Kristian Pelss died after jumping off a bridge into a river. No body was found yet, but apparently his clothes were. His family denies that the man that jumped off the bridge was him (but maybe this is just what they hope), but confirmed he is missing / can’t be found right now.

  9. NorwegianOiler says:

    Racki:

    Just saw, seems like a strange piece of news at the moment, neither confirmed nor denied.

  10. Metal&Oil says:

    Sad news indeed. #prayforpelss

  11. LateNightOilFan says:

    Not the off-season news anyone wants to hear. They are reporting a body has been found in the river. Thoughts and prayers are with the family, still unconfirmed but it doesn’t sound good. He just got home on Monday. :(

    http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/06/14/body-recovered-in-daugava-river-likely-that-of-kristians-pelss/

  12. Racki says:

    I think it all adds up to be Pelss’ body. Sad news to hear. On the hockey side of things, he was a good prospect and one I liked when he was an Oil King (hard working, energy guy). On the non-hockey side of things, terrible to see someone so young go out that way. Can’t help but wonder.. why?

  13. Racki says:

    Nothing like adding insult to injury:

    http://oilersnation.com/2013/6/14/dean-blundell-as-low-as-it-gets

    Do a fave, and send an e-mail off to the station manager… Robin Brownlee includes the link to the email form in his post.

  14. dawgtoy says:

    Sent my E-mail in disgust of this classless, disgusting act of utter stupidity. Pathetic to ridicule the senseless death of a troubled young man. Have a heart, he was loved by many and will likely be dearly missed by all those who knew him. Blundell clearly is a piece of shit! Would these comments be made had Pelss been a member of the Maple Leafs organization?

  15. Racki says:

    For the record, apparently the same thing was said on K97 yesterday by Terry Evans or someone.

    Trodor and Steve-O can attest that I have a sick sense of humor and habitually cross the line with some of the jokes I make between us, but you have to know your “forum”. Saying stuff like that on air is pretty classless.. but of course these guys thrive off the attention they get from it.

  16. new-guy says:

    MAPLE, Ont. — The Great One firmly believes the NHL will return to Quebec City.

    The Quebec capital has been without an NHL franchise since the Nordiques left in 1995. But hockey legend Wayne Gretzky said Tuesday his gut feeling is that Quebec City will again have its own pro hockey franchise.

    “I think it’s only a matter of time before Quebec City is going to get a franchise,” Gretzky told reporters at the Joe Carter Classic Golf Tournament. “Listen, I think we all agree it’s a good city and it can support an NHL team, especially now with the salary cap rules and the parity we have in the game of hockey.

    “When that’s going to be, it’s anybody’s guess but when they do come back in, it’s going to be a strong, solid franchise just like Winnipeg is now and it will be as successful as they are.”

    The NHL made a triumphant return to Winnipeg in 2011 when the Atlanta Thrashers relocated there and were renamed the Jets. The original Winnipeg Jets operated in the NHL from 1979 until 1996 when they left for Phoenix.

    The Quebec Nordiques were founded in 1972 and played in the World Hockey Association before joining the NHL in ’79. But following the 1994-’95 season the franchise was sold, moved to Denver and renamed the Colorado Avalanche.

    To add insult to injury for Quebec hockey fans, the Avs won the Stanley Cup their first year in Denver.

    The uncertainty surrounding the NHL’s future in Phoenix has helped fuel speculation Quebec City could be a potential landing spot for the Coyotes. Trouble is, Seattle has also been mentioned as a frontrunner for the troubled club, which is currently owned and operated by the league.

    Renaissance Sports & Entertainment is trying to purchase the Coyotes and keep them in Arizona. But Glendale city council must decide whether to accept a tentative lease agreement with the group.

    Talk around hockey circles is if the deal isn’t accepted, the Coyotes could be playing elsewhere next season. Gretzky, 52, was a part-owner in Phoenix as well as the club’s head coach (2005-’06 to 2008-’09) following his playing career but couldn’t shed any light on his former club’s future.

    “Honestly, I’ve not followed it at all,” he said. “I don’t live in Arizona anymore and you probably know more about it than I do.

    “I’d be just guessing if I said anything . . . and probably so would you.”

    Despite the Coyotes’ struggles in Phoenix, Gretzky feels there is potential for an NHL club to succeed there.

    “It’s a great city and it’s a great sports city,” he said. “When you look at franchises . . . Columbus is a great example: They turned their season around this year, they started winning, they got some excitement, they started selling out again.

    “Phoenix is a very good sports city and hopefully they get the right owner that can go in there and keep that franchise in Phoenix.”

    Gretzky’s illustrious NHL career spanned 20 seasons and was spent with four teams (Edmonton, LA, St. Louis and New York Rangers). He retired following the ’98-’99 season and the four-time Stanley Cup champion with the Oilers remains the game’s all-time leader in goals (894), assists (1,963) and points (2,857).

    The six-foot, 189-pound of Brantford, Ont., was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame shortly after he retired.

    Gretzky is presently out of hockey but was mentioned as a potential successor to John Tortorella as the Rangers’ head coach. However, the New York club has reportedly hired former Vancouver head coach Alain Vigneault to that post.

    “Listen, everything I have in my life is because of hockey, everything I’ve got to do and the places I’ve got to go to are because of hockey,” Gretzky said. “I never talked to the New York Rangers.

    “At this point and time in my life, it’s nice that other people mention my name to say that I’m around . . . I’m enjoying what I am doing and right now hockey is not part of it. Is it going to be one day? Maybe. But right now that doesn’t seem to be the case.”

    So does Gretzky miss the game?

    “Oh sure,” he said. “I wish I could play but unfortunately I’m too slow and too old.

    “It’s the greatest game in the world, yeah, I miss it.”

    Gretzky has watched the Stanley Cup final from afar — “I can’t get tickets,” he said when asked if he’s attended any of the first three games — and been impressed with what he’s seen from Boston and Chicago. The Bruins lead the best-of-seven final 2-1 heading into Wednesday night’s game in Beantown.

    “I think the hockey has been as good as I’ve ever seen,” he said. “You’ve got two evenly matched teams that are doing everything they can to be successful.

    “They’re playing hard, they’re playing fair, they’re playing the right way. I think they’ve done a great service for the game of hockey and the NHL. It’s been truly tremendous.”

    And Gretzky has a rooting interest in the series. He’s hoping the Bruins prevail because his brother, Keith, is a scout with the club.

    “So from that point of view I’m pulling for the Bruins and hope they get the chance to win the Stanley Cup,” he said.

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