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If healthy, Oilers D could be far better than expected

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Old
12-05-2012, 10:55 AM
  #1
fuhr
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If healthy, Oilers D could be far better than expected

The potential for things to start turning around starting this year is there. Really like the idea of a top four of Smid-J.Schultz and Whitney-Petry.Neither would be a true first pairing but it is a step in the right direction.

http://www.ourhometown.ca/edmonton/sports/RS0489.php

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12-05-2012, 10:59 AM
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OneMoreAstronaut
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If healthy
So we're screwed is what you're saying

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12-05-2012, 11:00 AM
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joestevens29
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Petry not playing could end up hurting us.

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12-05-2012, 11:16 AM
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Is the answer Jesus?

Because unless Schultz is the second coming of Bobby Orr and can play 40 minutes a night, and none of the other three NHL-caliber D we have get hurt, we should be in good shape.

And if not, we've always got the MVP back in net, or if you'd prefer the young goalie who's had most of his career games played for a team in tank mode where he was expected to lose.


Last edited by Silver: 12-05-2012 at 11:26 AM.
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12-05-2012, 11:29 AM
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worraps
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If Whitney is truly healthy, Smid is ok (there seems to be some uncertainty about this still), Schultz continues along his current path, and no one else gets injured, the Oilers will have a decent defensive corps this season.

That is a helluva lot of ifs.

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12-05-2012, 12:37 PM
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The third pairing will be bleeding goals against I tell ya!
Potter-Peckham


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Old
12-05-2012, 12:43 PM
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misfit
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Smid/Petry haven't been together long, but they had a fair amount of success when they were. If they can build on that chemistry rather than going the other way with it, they could be a very serviceable top pairing. In a perfect world you've got an elite defenseman anchoring the top spot allowing Smid-Petry to be the 2nd pair, but those players are hard to come by.

If any of Justin Schultz's play in the AHL carries over into the NHL, then he could help out a lot sooner than most of us expected. A steady vetran LD like Nick Schultz could be the ideal compliment in both style, and to have someone to cover for the inevitable "young defenseman" issues that every defenseman in history has experienced. Scott Hannan did an excellent job in that role with both Josh Gorges and M-E Vlasic in San Jose. The other way to do it is if you have a healthy Whitney, you can play him at RD with Schultz like they did last year and have a 1A/1B situation and it allows J.Schultz to play even more sheltered minutes at ES and still giving him time on the #1PP unit.

Asuming Whitney isn't at 100% (which he may never be again), then he anchors your 3rd pair quite nicely. He played well with Potter in the past, but who knows if Potter even makes the team this year. Peckham could be the guy, or Teubert, or any number of vetran free agents still out there (Eeaton/Commodore/White).


So yeah, the defense could be alright, but we're also assuming players who historically have issues with injuries (Smid/Whitney) will be healthy and that the young guys will step in and continue to improve without taking a step back.

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12-05-2012, 12:57 PM
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BoldNewLettuce
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Quote:
Originally Posted by worraps View Post
If Whitney is truly healthy, Smid is ok (there seems to be some uncertainty about this still), Schultz continues along his current path, and no one else gets injured, the Oilers will have a decent defensive corps this season.

That is a helluva lot of ifs.
that is four ifs.

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12-05-2012, 12:57 PM
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nexttothemoon
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The third pairing will be bleeding goals against I tell ya!
Potter-Peckham

Peckham actually doesn't bleed a lot of goals against. Even plus minus last season and -5 season before... not bad overall really. Potter on the other hand... yes.

3rd pairing isn't really the issue anyway... if the top 4 can stay healthy then the Oilers are solid... of course when those bottom pairing guys are playing up in the #3/#4 spots for extended periods... that's where the **** hits the fan every season... regularly.

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12-05-2012, 01:04 PM
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Originally Posted by nexttothemoon View Post
Peckham actually doesn't bleed a lot of goals against. Even plus minus last season and -5 season before... not bad overall really. Potter on the other hand... yes.

3rd pairing isn't really the issue anyway... if the top 4 can stay healthy then the Oilers are solid... of course when those bottom pairing guys are playing up in the #3/#4 spots for extended periods... that's where the **** hits the fan every season... regularly.
The fact that we HAVE to ice such an atrocious pairing is a testament to our very poor depth at that position.
And with so many ifs in the health department on our blue line, it could prove to be disastrous.

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12-05-2012, 02:04 PM
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No doubt the Oilers dman depth is the achilles heel of the team (the biggest one anyway)... but they are obviously going with internal development of their dman prospects and "eventually" Klefbom/Marincin/Gernat/Musil/Teubert/Fedun etc will fill out the depth... of course that's a few years away.

I think shorter term they need another decent solid vet dman like Sutton who will leave a pretty big hole on the blueline if he does retire.

N Schultz J Schultz
Smid Petry
Whitney Sutton
Peckham Potter

That group looks a lot better with a guy like Sutton in there than without him.

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12-05-2012, 02:07 PM
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joestevens29
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Wouldn't have to worry as much about depth if we actually had players that are top pairing d-men.

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12-05-2012, 02:20 PM
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Like everyone is saying. We'll probably be decent if they stay healthy. Maybe even above decent if Whitney truly returns to form.

Unfortunately history has shown we can't stay healthy and we really have poor depth.

Whitney, J.Schultz,N.Schult,Smid,Petry 1-5
Potter, Peckham 6/7

Who's our callups?
Teubert, Plante, Marincin
- If Teubert and Plante were playing great in the AHL we'd be in better shape. From what I've heard isn't really the case though. Then perhaps we'd be alright.
- The one guy playing good in the AHL is a rookie pro.

I do think the keys to a successful season for us.
1) Healthy defence.
2) Improved Veteran performances from Gagner, Horcoff, Hemsky,Belanger to tip the scales.
3) Continued success and improvement from Hall, Ebs, RNH.
4) Some sandpaper grit so we're not an easy team to play against. this one may be tough. Eager?

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12-05-2012, 02:23 PM
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nexttothemoon
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Honestly though... depth is critical because even if they had a true top pairing guy... he goes down to injury and you are in that exact same position again. If they had more #3/4/5 quality dmen that's crucial because then you aren't sliding #6/#7 guys up to levels they shouldn't be playing at every time there is an injury.

Clone a Sutton.. or another Nick Schultz and you are Golden imo.

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Old
12-05-2012, 02:35 PM
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jukon
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Healthy Oilers. That's an oxymoron.

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12-05-2012, 02:41 PM
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The Nuge
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yourface View Post
The third pairing will be bleeding goals against I tell ya!
Potter-Peckham

Nick Schultz?

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12-05-2012, 02:42 PM
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awesomo
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This happens every year and the answer is still no.

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12-05-2012, 02:57 PM
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joestevens29
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This happens every year and the answer is still no.
Pretty much.

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12-05-2012, 03:12 PM
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Nahhhhhhhh

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12-05-2012, 04:02 PM
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Nick Schultz?
Woops, I completely forgot about the other Schultz!

Yeah, it doesn't look nearly as bad anymore haha.

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12-05-2012, 04:06 PM
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Moonlapse Vertigo
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Not really, and without the toughness of Andy Sutton on the backend we have a bunch of creampuffs back there.

Does somebody have a free agent list handy? Because with the NHL about to start back up we need some help. Badly.

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12-05-2012, 04:22 PM
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scid14
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I agree that our D could be better than expected if they are all healthy. Although in saying that we definitely could use some help.

Smid - Petry
Schultz - Schultz
Whitney - Peckham

Petry not playing right now is a little concerning, would be worse if the lockout goes all year.

Smid has the meniscus problems? Not sure where he is at with that.

The Schultz's seem to be okay?

Whitney, if he returns to form will be a big boost for us.

Peckham hopefully can get back on track. He took a step backwards last year but we will see what happens this year.

Lots and lots of question marks though.

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12-05-2012, 04:30 PM
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Originally Posted by Moonlapse Vertigo View Post
Not really, and without the toughness of Andy Sutton on the backend we have a bunch of creampuffs back there.

Does somebody have a free agent list handy? Because with the NHL about to start back up we need some help. Badly.
If Peckham and Whitney could revert back to their 2010-2011 forms, I'd be happy.
Nonetheless, I agree that we should try to sign a veteran D-man.

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12-05-2012, 04:44 PM
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joestevens29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Moonlapse Vertigo View Post
Not really, and without the toughness of Andy Sutton on the backend we have a bunch of creampuffs back there.

Does somebody have a free agent list handy? Because with the NHL about to start back up we need some help. Badly.
I make a pitch for Greene.

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Old
12-05-2012, 05:04 PM
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nexttothemoon
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As far as free agents go its pretty slim pickings out there for experienced dmen:

Clark, Brett »
Campoli, Chris »
Spacek, Jaroslav »
Eaton, Mark »
Foster, Kurtis »
Huskins, Kent »
White, Colin »
Jones, Randy »
Mottau, Mike »
O'Donnell, Sean »
Rodney, Bryan »
Commodore, Mike »
Bell, Brendan »
Vandermeer, Jim »

That's the list of unsigned UFA dmen from Capgeek.

If I HAD to take one of those, I think I'd go with Vandermeer again. Brings some toughness and grit into the lineup and he's stable and experienced enough that he's not going to hemorrhage goals when he's out there.

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