Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Lowe Books Vacation Using Frequent Flyer Points From W-B Shuttle


Deslauriers. Hejda. Syvret. Roy. Thoresen. Pouliot. Jacques. Mikhnov. Stortini. Petersen. Smid. Greene. Lupul.
Well, maybe not the last three. ;)
Now Tommy Gilbert.
Nice trophy.
Funny thing is the Oilers have six of a possible eight points in their last four games. You'd really think the season was down the drain the way people are talking.
Its one of those stretches my beer league team goes through though. Unbeaten in six, with two wins and four ties. A loss away from being winless in four.
There's no denying that the Oilers have been mediocre since their quick start and pretty poor up until the last week. And even the last week has left a lot to be desired. They have the majority of the WC ahead of them and the remainder right on their heels.
But they're still in the mix, even with that dog's breakfast on the blueline. And a bunch of forwards who couldn't put the puck in the ocean, check their hat or both.
But I'm a positive type of guy so I'll take the "what, me worry?" approach. And watching the Leafs' 18M dollar top four make Matt Greene and Mathieu Roy look like Savard and Robinson warms my heart. But then you see a rookie like Ian White - undersized and underrated - playing for God's team. Hurt tonight but 18 points and a plus two and eight points in the last ten games or some such thing. Sure he gets the soft minutes but he does alright. He's not getting eaten alive out there.
Roloson looks like he may be getting his groove back and the impression from MacT is that playtime is over. Greene takes a seat and it looks like the 28 year old who has played professional hockey for nine years may have finally gotten a permanent spot on the roster. Hejda has only shown well at every opportunity he has gotten, right from the first preseason game. Having Greene and Smid play ahead of him makes sense if you're trying to give those youngsters their at bats. But that time is over. Five points out of first in the division. A point out of a playoff spot with Colorado between them and eighth.
Time to start winning before the gap grows and they get passed by more teams.
To that point Pouliot and Jacques get sent down and the best rookie from this season's lot - Thoresen - comes back up. MacT references that Jacques and Pouliot aren't going to get the amount of icetime to further their development at this point so they get shipped out and the most complete player amongst the rooks (another guy with some pro experience under his belt) comes up. Thoresen's offence dried up long ago but on a team where not a lot of forwards can figure out their own end at times, he can and that makes him a valuable asset, even if he's only playing eight or nine minutes a night. Better him at a plus one then Jacques at a minus nine. How does that happen?
As for Tom Gilbert, well, hard to say if he takes Roy's place in the lineup against SJ or if he is up like Stortini, Syvret and JDD were previously - just to get a practice or two in and then back down. I'd like to see him get some action. By all accounts he has some offensive upside and he's a big body. Be interesting to see if he gets his shot tomorrow night.
The Nedved experiment continues and the result so far is as expected - whatever. The guy is motivated - its his career on the line here - but so far not a lot happening.
Vic Ferrari is a guy who has talked a lot in the past about posts and puck luck. How many posts has Horcoff hit this year? Anyone?
Dennis from IOF made the completely obvious counterpoint to my point that there was no way Torres was going anywhere with Smyth possibly becoming a UFA and likely even if they signed Smyth with their depth (lack of it) on the LW. Ready?
Pisani could make the move from RW to LW.
Makes too much sense. ;)
Of course then even if Smyth or Sykora leaves (my guess is one sticks around) you've got 94-10-83 and 34-16-15 and then 18-19-28 and throw MAP, Brodziak, JFJ, Schremp and Almtorp into the mix and Torres has been moved for that Dman.
We'll see. I still think its Lupul - Torres just brings that edge that this team seems to lack.
Anyhow another two points tomorrow night and its eight out of ten and then Lowe can make his deal and we're looking at Hejda and Staios, Shaggy and Greene or Gilbert or whoever and then Smith and Brewer (Blues are a dozen points out now) and there you go.
Doesn't that make you feel better?

7 comments:

Mr DeBakey said...

I'd be happy with this:

Smyth=Horcoff=Lupul
Torres=Stoll=Pisani
Sykora=Pouliot=Hemsky
Moreau=Reasoner=Thoresen

Hejda=Staios
Brewer=Smith
Bergeron=Tjarnqvist

Roloson, Markkanen

I'm assuming Nedved doesn't make it.
Even better if they could snag Guerin in the same deal that brings Brewer.
Old home week.
Play Guerin with 10-94
Move Lupul to play with
Reasoner/Moreau or
Sykora/Hemsky

Black Dog said...

I really can't see them moving Torres and for that matter, likely Lupul goes nowhere until the summer if he does go anywhere.

If they do move either for a young Dman - lets say Pitkanen as he is the flavour of the week - then your man Guerin could come the other way or somebody lke Dvorak or Sami Kapanen.

Or Tucker if the Leafs fall out of it, which they may be about to.

Ottawa on the other hand - they are starting to make their move - so forget Phillips.

Vic Ferrari said...

Ever notice how the Oilers defence looks pretty damn good at moving the puck when the Torres/Stoll/Pisani line is out there?

I dunno, I'm probably alone, but I think that the need is for a PP defenseman. A left handed shot so that they can play that side with Hemsky. It would be great if said player was a good evens guy too, but with Smid and Greene out of the lineup, I can't get too worried about that aspect anyways.

PPP said...

If Tucker becomes available then what do you think Lowe's best offer to the Leafs would be?

Also, White does get a bit of PK time so he is not playing exclusively soft minutes. His loss will hurt but if there is something the Leafs have in adundance it's rookie defencemen ready to learn.

namflashback said...

A couple of good signs from the coaches in the last two games.

Upward of 1.5 mins given to PP unit#1, lots of ice fed to Hemsky and Sykora and Smyth here. An idea seen around the Oilogosphere since the pre-season.

Late game, double-shifts of Hemsky in Joffrey's spot while Lupul sits. I also liked when Hemsky got extra shifts with Marty and MAP. Also a very good idea.

Still some craziness on the back end though, I know these were road game, but the Czech line out with the third pair D. It happened more than a couple of times against Vancouver and LA.

SweatyO said...

How's this for a good idea?

Your new first powerplay unit:

Smyth-Horcoff-Hemsky
Sykora-Staios

It's time to go back to five forwards people. At least I think it is...

Black Dog said...

ppp - no idea really

interesting comments today about the upcoming frenzy - last season Lowe was one of few teams with cap romm and also there were a lot more teams out of it so the market was a buyers' market

this season there are plenty of teams who have cap space and quite a few in the race - who is out? - St. Louis and Philly. Now we can look at the standings and figure that the Yotes and Panthers and Jackets will probably fade but who knows and can those teams afford to move players in terms of PR if they are 6 points out in a month

Having said all of that Comrie netted a prospect who may never even come back to North America so does Tucker bring much more if the Leafs deal him? He's a more complete player then Comrie but my guess is a decent prospect or Anaheim's first rounder maybe?? If that much? I'd like to see him playing with 94 and 10 but I think he will resign with the Leafs to be honest - he wants to be there and I'm thinking they would like him back.

Leafs' surplus on the back end is truly enviable which makes the signing of Kubina and Gill all that more puzzling to me. Eh, what do I know?

Vic - well, we're talking Heyda/Smith, Shaggy/Staios and MAB/rookie right now.

Ideally they could bring someone in who would bump everyone down a notch but I haven't the foggiest in terms of a true LH PP QB who is out there.

Is Pitkanen?