Thursday, January 11, 2007

Thinking About Drinking and Other Ideas

Jenn and the kids are gone for two weeks. After a few days of sitting around and doing nothing, which I haven't done, in, oh, seventeen months or so, I took it upon myself to go out for some pints last night. I will be doing it again tonight. And tomorrow night.
Going to turn back the clock and get my liver to cry 'Uncle!'
And hopefully get some research done for my other blog.
Last night I staggered in just after 11 after about six hours of it - very good. The Oilers somehow won in San Jose with the Wilkes Barres D corps. Apparently Smith is going to go to the PB for a rest tomorrow night and likely MAB will be a healthy scratch - Syvret and Bryan Young will make it a all rook six pack.
Took a stroll around the Oilogosphere this morning and noticed that, like any good dog will, I had left my rather incoherent mark in many places.
Apparently I invited myself to Grabia's for food and drink, among other things. Hmmm.
What I wanted to do in this post is expand on a quick drunken point I made at Tyler's site when commenting on the game. Dennis responded to it but I was abed by that point.
With Tom Gilbert's callup it is mighty clear that the Oilers have a surplus (albeit of one) of right handed Dmen. Smith. Staios. Greene. Gilbert. We know Tom is likely up just for the moment but we also know that he has made the transition to pro pretty seamlessly. He is a confident kid. He's big. And he has a skillset sorely lacking on the Oilers' blueline. He has some offensive ability.
Now this might never work out for him at the NHL level but think for a second.
Smith isn't going anywhere. Neither is Staios. We know that.
On the left side, Smid is going to be around for a while. We might see little of him for the remainder of this season but he's twenty, he has a lot of potential and with the optics of the CP trade you know he's going nowhere.
Hejda has earned a spot and if continues to do what he is doing I think they should get him signed for a year or two. He'd be relatively cheap and he brings some stability back there.
Shaggy is gone after this year. Nice try and the guy will benefit from Hejda's emergence as well as if they bring in Brewer or Stuart as a rental but I think he's limited. And injury prone.
So that leaves us with Smith, Staios, Hejda, Smid going into next year and Shaggy in Smid's place, MAB and a rental to round this out for the remainder of this.
Hard to say what happens with MAB - he has value as tradebait and to the Oilers as a player. My guess is Lowe trades for a LD this summer - a Pitkanen, a Keith, a Vishnovsky.
If that happens then we have NewGuy/Smid/Hejda or MAB on the left.
Smith/Staios on the right.
Roy as the seventh guy.
Yep, I've left someone out. A guy who probably has some pretty good value on the trade market. Young. Cheap. Defensive defenceman.
So next year they break in another rook on D. As opposed to the three they are breaking in this season.
I like Greene a lot. I think he's going to be a good defenceman in this league. I just think Gilbert has an interesting (and much needed) skillset that this team shouldn't be moving.
Newguy/Smith, Smid/Staios, Hejda/Gilbert. Switch Smid and Hejda if you like.


namflashback said...

Pat, very true. Smith and Staios will get to play "break-in the rookie" every year.
Greene got the forcefed minutes last year, but was decently protected by the top two pairs.

Gilbert and perhaps less so Roy are two guys with upside of skills we know we need in this new NHL. so Greene would seem to be holding these guys back. You probably still need both Gilbert and Roy in the system for another year in order to determine which of them is ideal.

Smid will develop (he's 4 years younger than Gilbert for Chrissakes), but he should be platooned for the coming half season and more. Syvret and Chorney represent the guys who will threaten for MAB's spot.


Gives you four vets+Hejda and the rookie. One rookie a game please. Particularly because we will be breaking in rookies in the forward corps.

Mr DeBakey said...

There's no doubt that the

Perceived Value
Immediate Negative Impact

for Smid & Greene would be higher than any other Oiler asset.

SweatyO said...

Guys, I love Smith and all, and have been one of his most passionate defenders through all the criticism.

But think about it for a minute. Greene will essentially be through 3 full NHL seasons at the end of the 07-08 season. The time when Jason Smith is slated to become a UFA.

If you consider what Willie Mitchell managed to get on the open market this see where I'm going with this?

I don't think they move Greene. 2nd highest d-man potential in the organization, other than Smid. Greene/Gilbert, in 3 years, could the the 2nd pairing behind Pitkanen/Smid. Or so I have decided to dream....

sacamano said...

Nice work on that other blog. You should come over and visit me -- there are minimum 20 within a 12 minute walk of my place.

Black Dog said...

sweatyo - I know what you're saying - don't know if Smith will be unaffordable though - Mitchell is younger and has fewer miles on him

Greene has that potential, no doubt. Gilbert intrigues me however and I'd rather not move a guy with that type of game.

I think that your point is well taken and probably the reason he will not be moved. If Smith left then you'd have spots for Gilbert and Greene. If you retain Smith then you will likely move one.

Its a decision that will likely be postponed for another eighteen months.

sacamano - don't make me come over there!

love England, especially the pubs; could use a little more of that here