: Pre-Game Talk:
The Three Constants In Life: Death, Taxes and Oilers Draft Watch
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12-26-2013, 12:13 AM
Streak Breakers Inc
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Northern Alberta
Well the plan WAS to tank with Lowe/Tambo implementing that policy as part of the 4-6 year rebuild process. I'm of the strong belief that it was a combination of intentionally not acquiring decent assets (to help the tanking process) AND general incompetence in selecting the players they did feel would help fill holes on the roster.
It's hard to separate the deliberate and the unintentional when it comes to why the team is now in the state it is in.
One thing that I think management underestimated was how difficult it is to turn the switch from tank mode to contender mode.
It turns out it's not as simple as saying... "Ok tank mode is over now, we need to acquire solid assets to help come out of this rebuild".
Actually going from tank mode to "coming out of rebuild mode" takes some competence from the pro scouts and management to get REAL NHL assets that will actually improve the team.
MacT isn't dumb but I think he severely underestimated the level of difficulty there would be in acquiring the correct players in the UFA market and through trades to be able to fill the glaring holes in the lineup. In most cases I think he had to settle for plan C and D this past summer and it was more of... "Let's see how it goes with these additions" rather than feeling confident that they were going to actually be much better this year and take the next step forward.
There's no simple solutions other than acquiring 1)more gritty, physical, truculent players throughout this lineup of generally small and soft players. 2) acquiring more legit solid top 4 dmen... and not just 1 of those either like another Ference type whose barely a #4... really a #5 on a good team. 3) better goaltending... Dubnyk/Bryzgalov is a temporary experiment but this team hasn't had a bonafide #1 in ages. Right now they are still in "let's see how it goes" mode with the goalies as well.
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