: Post-Game Talk:
Oilers Lose 3-1
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04-22-2013, 12:33 PM
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Northern Alberta
I think some people are confusing supporting "the tank" with supporting "the rebuild". I've personally been onboard with the rebuild since it began.
In my mind I saw it as the only way out of the perpetual abyss of mediocrity this team was in... and barring another unlikely Cinderella run... was likely going to be the story for the foreseeable future as well.
I personally never supported a "tank" every year... rather I supported management culling the crap in the org and replacing it with young prospects to be developed and the franchise being rebuilt internally and organically at both the AHL and NHL levels.
Obviously management has to add some veteran bodies as well to help fill out the roster during this rebuild phase as the youth can't do it all... and that's largely where management has failed so far. Adding a supportive cast that can somewhat shelter and contribute to help this young core group is also an essential part of the rebuild and obviously that's one area that hasn't been addressed adequately.
Fundamentally though... the rebuild WAS and IS the best plan of action. Management and fans who supported the rebuild were probably collectively naive to think it would go smoothly... linear development and improvement every year was not something that could realistically be expected.
Management has obviously made many mistakes in addressing the needs to help make this roster more competitive... more toughness, more size, more determination and a higher work ethic is obviously lacking in many areas of the team... it's not just a lack of pure skill and talent (although that would be beneficial as well).
But back to the main point, I personally wanted this team to improve and win. This season I was ridiculously optimistic and predicted a 5th place finish for the Oilers... thinking this might be the year they would take a quantum leap up in the standings. Obviously not. It was apparent after a short while this season that wasn't at all likely.
Now I am definitely in tank mode since the Oilers are out of the playoffs. Yes I want a top 8 pick... and why not? The higher they pick the better the asset they get.
Next season starts... I'll again be watching and thinking playoffs (maybe naively yet again)... but again the team's performance will tell the story of whether this rebuild is off the rails or not. Playoffs should be an expectation next season. I don't think that's impossible but it depends on off season acquisitions and moves.
If the supporting cast is improved... no reason this team can't be in contention for a spot in the top 8.
I only support "the tank" when realistic hope is lost for a playoff spot.. like it has been for weeks now.
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