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The Oilers' number one priority - what is it?

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Old
11-26-2003, 07:02 PM
  #1
Vomiting Kermit*
 
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The Oilers' number one priority - what is it?

Defense. In the 2001-02 season, the Oilers finished second in the league when it came to goals against, allowing just 182. After 22 games so far this year, opponents have averaged over three goals a game against Edmonton, handing the copper and blue the most goals against in the entire NHL: 69.

I don't get it. The defense can look great one night (i.e. @ MIN) and then play terrible another. If you remember the 4-4 tie against Detroit earlier this year at Rexall Place, Salo and the rest of the team played good in their own end of the rink in periods one and three, and the over time. Yet, in the second period, the Red Wings got four past Tommy. What's going on here? Why or how does a team only play well in front of Salo or Conklin or Valiquette for 40 minutes some nights, but blow it in just half that time?

What does everyone else think is the biggest area on the Oilers in need of an upgrade?

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11-26-2003, 07:22 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by York16
Defense. In the 2001-02 season, the Oilers finished second in the league when it came to goals against, allowing just 182. After 22 games so far this year, opponents have averaged over three goals a game against Edmonton, handing the copper and blue the most goals against in the entire NHL: 69.

I don't get it. The defense can look great one night (i.e. @ MIN) and then play terrible another. If you remember the 4-4 tie against Detroit earlier this year at Rexall Place, Salo and the rest of the team played good in their own end of the rink in periods one and three, and the over time. Yet, in the second period, the Red Wings got four past Tommy. What's going on here? Why or how does a team only play well in front of Salo or Conklin or Valiquette for 40 minutes some nights, but blow it in just half that time?

What does everyone else think is the biggest area on the Oilers in need of an upgrade?
according to the CBS Sportsline Rankings, we have the Best defence in the league right now

http://www.sportsline.com/nhl/player...larseason/TEAM

also our left wingers are ranked second, and right wingers ninth.

Im not sure how much stock to put into this, but they do have our goaltending ranked at 27th, and our center position at 30th. (GA sucks and we have no real scoring C, at least before Oates plays) Thats not that far-fetched (Although Conker has been keeping the things together well enough). and.....whenever Reasoner gets back, and Oates warms up enough to build chemistry with some Oilers, I think then this team becomes much more consistent. Btw, the chemistry Izzy is getting with Hemsky is a pleasant thing to see. If it gets anywhere to what York and Dvo have, Ill be more than satisfied.

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11-26-2003, 07:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by windowlicker
according to the CBS Sportsline Rankings, we have the Best defence in the league right now

http://www.sportsline.com/nhl/player...larseason/TEAM

also our left wingers are ranked second, and right wingers ninth.

Im not sure how much stock to put into this, but they do have our goaltending ranked at 27th, and our center position at 30th. (GA sucks and we have no real scoring C, at least before Oates plays) Thats not that far-fetched (Although Conker has been keeping the things together well enough). and.....whenever Reasoner gets back, and Oates warms up enough to build chemistry with some Oilers, I think then this team becomes much more consistent. Btw, the chemistry Izzy is getting with Hemsky is a pleasant thing to see. If it gets anywhere to what York and Dvo have, Ill be more than satisfied.


And yes, I agree with you. I really can't wait to see what this Oiler team looks like with Oates. Reasoner coming back will give the Oilers two centreman that can win draws, so that's also positive news. Not to mention some of the quiet Oilers are coming around. I guess we'll find out what this team is made of once everyone is healthy and certain issues have been resolved.

Another two things could happen to put this team in the right direction:

1. Comrie is signed or traded for something that will help the team this season.

2. Salo of the 2001-02 season returns.

Go Oilers!


Last edited by Vomiting Kermit*: 11-26-2003 at 07:36 PM.
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11-26-2003, 09:18 PM
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Oilers are going no where till we get a goalie. I like Conklin(he's better than Salo) but he's not a legitimate #1 yet. He can play 20-30 games but we need a #1 guy. Untill we get one we will never get passed the first round.

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11-27-2003, 06:03 AM
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Originally Posted by AVE MAN
Oilers are going no where till we get a goalie. I like Conklin(he's better than Salo) but he's not a legitimate #1 yet. He can play 20-30 games but we need a #1 guy. Untill we get one we will never get passed the first round.
buffalo is looking to drop either noronen or biron... either would fit nicely in edmonton and could develop into a solid number one. it probably wouldn't take much more than laraque to get either of them.

the problems remain...
- lowe thinks laraque is useful (note to lowe: small market, fast tempo teams don't need slow, half-hearted goons)
- lowe thinks salo will rebound
- even if lowe wanted to deal salo there would be no takers

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11-27-2003, 06:26 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LawnDemon
buffalo is looking to drop either noronen or biron... either would fit nicely in edmonton and could develop into a solid number one. it probably wouldn't take much more than laraque to get either of them.

the problems remain...
- lowe thinks laraque is useful (note to lowe: small market, fast tempo teams don't need slow, half-hearted goons)
- lowe thinks salo will rebound
- even if lowe wanted to deal salo there would be no takers
Your last point is the reason why geting a new goalie would be impossible. To aquire a new goalie, we would either have to waive Conklin or trade/buy out salo (unless we carry 3 goalies, never a good idea). Waiving Conklin would simply be the waste of an asset. Trading Salo would be impossible, if no one wants Cujo with the wings paying half his salary, who would want Salo? And buying out Salo would mean we lose an asset for nothing, but we'd still have to pay him a boatload of cash. I say we should just not pick up Salo's option, and trade for a goalie in the off season. Its not the best course of action for the present time, but I don't see any other choice. Atleast this way, we'd benefit if Salo returned to form.

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11-27-2003, 06:27 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LawnDemon
buffalo is looking to drop either noronen or biron... either would fit nicely in edmonton and could develop into a solid number one. it probably wouldn't take much more than laraque to get either of them.

the problems remain...
- lowe thinks laraque is useful (note to lowe: small market, fast tempo teams don't need slow, half-hearted goons)
- lowe thinks salo will rebound
- even if lowe wanted to deal salo there would be no takers
We have Tommy for another year for sure, and depending on what comes into the goalie market, we'll possibly could have him after this year. HOWEVER, I'm fine with that. Perhaps this is what he needed. A long layoff, watch another kid have BIG success and carry the team and think "jeez.... my job is on the line, I don't need to find the old player I was, I HAVE to find the player I was"

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11-27-2003, 09:48 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thome_26
Perhaps this is what he needed. A long layoff, watch another kid have BIG success and carry the team and think "jeez.... my job is on the line, I don't need to find the old player I was, I HAVE to find the player I was"
Hopefully you're right. Maybe Tommy from the 2001-02 season will show up.


Last edited by Vomiting Kermit*: 11-27-2003 at 02:57 PM.
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11-27-2003, 11:15 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by York16
Hopefully you're right. Maybe Tommy from 2001-02 will show up.
I am 100% confident in Salo, however it appears as though I am the minority on this one. He is capable of being a top 10 in the league guy. As for the defense - things need to be simplified. We have the defensemen thinking way too offensively. Whether it is misguided pinches in the offensive zone, or greedy passes in the defensive zone things have gotten way too complex for the talent back their. Guys like Brewer, Cross, Smith, Ferguson, Semenov, even Bergeron need to focus on keeping the puck towards the outside and taking it high off the glass rather than up the middle or reversing it back and forth 100 times. Rather than skating back into trouble in the defensive zone making the safe play and getting the puck out. Moreover, defensive success comes from the efforts of every player on the ice - not just the d-men. The forwards need to focus on basics like getting the puck out of the zone especially during pressure situations. The goals will come but they need to be more conscious of their own zone.

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