We were somewhere on the edge of the playoffs when our team broke down. Our heart was ripped out to be sure. A team eight to the bad and none to the good in 120 minutes of play needs more than a heart, it needs some courage.
Lowe's biggest mistake may have been not gutting the team entirely. Meaning moving any number of Sykora, Jussi, Tjarnqvist, Winch, Toby. He may regret not trying bring in a stop gap for the last 20 games.
I can't imagine that he intends to throw games. A man that competes on that level isn't built like that. Not by how he talks, and he's scheduled to be on the big breakfast (tomorrow I think). He's campaigning to save his ass. Which is an easy sell if we play okay hockey. This is not okay hockey. This is embarassing.
I want to see Nilsson and Schremp if we don't plan on being goal scorers. We need to bring some kind of electricity to our fair city. Too many plumbers, and we lost our only electrician. Waive somebody.
The weirdness could become strange real quick. And I fear for our leader. He is not perfect, but he makes you believe in something, something bigger than ourselves. And he is truly capable of this job.
The Edmonton Oilers are suffering from the lack of a transition game. No, just not our transition on the ice. Which, by the way, is to be ridiculed, laughed at, and pitied. No. Our franchise has never had a fruitful rebuild.
Oh yes, we've sucked, and come into the draft with low draft picks. The dearly departed Mr. Smyth was of course brought into the organization that way. But Barry Fraser's wisdom, and by that I do mean lack thereof, meant we never stockpiled the assets every team needs to build off of.
It's very much like my hand, which I cut with a kitchen utensil: instead of seeking urgent medical assistance, I employed the help of a wad of tissue paper and scotch tape. So, not only did I not go get stitches for a wound which clearly needed them, but I used the worst dressing material possible and in fact made a bad situation worse.
But I'm not here to tell you all about my culinary catastrophes. I'm here to lament on the failure of our drafting, which has had a far worse effect than most have wrapped their head around.
A simple example of how it's done right can be seen in Joe Nieuwendyk's career. A high pick in '85, when it became too rich to keep him, the Flames shelved him off for kid wonder Jarome Iginla. Had our souther neighbours bjorked the pick, not only do they not reap the offensive rewards Nieuwendyk provided, but they miss out on the additional asset.
This team has not been in a position to do that. Ever. Thanks to the failure of our early 90's picks, not only did we flounder in bolstering the lineup, we left the cupboard dry of tradeable assets.
That's why the Smyth trade is encouraging. There is no doubt it's one of the most painful moments in our history. But for the first time ever, this team has decided they want to rebuild and have put the proper staff in place to do it right.
We were, as we've seen over the past ten years, doomed to be stuck in the NHL's version of purgatory: consistently just-good-enough. We've further submarined this team's chances of becoming dominant once again by doing the 15th overall dance for as long as we did.
Lowe deserves credit for having finally had the n/guts to make this team bad. We needed it. If I wanted to, I could have my ugly hand scar fixed- but the plastic surgeon would need to cut my hand back open to do it. And that would hurt. And there's a risk it turns out worse than before. But it's not going to get any less ugly unless I try that.
don't be the messenger unless you get your facts right. it's like crying wolf. not cool.
i agree with mr bugg completely. this is the first step in a long process that could be expedited with the proper personnel moves in rebuilding this team. we have the tools and we have the prospects to get it done. 3 first round picks, a lot of prospects, and what should be a lot of cap room should be able to get you a little something this off-season so lets see what happens this summer.
also in terms of rebuilding this team, i believe it was bob stauffer that said it on his show today, we need to look at creating an identity. this team lost its identity once craig mactavish took over as coach. we were no longer the up-tempo team that could punish a team, we weren't a run-and-gun team, we aren't a grinding team, we aren't a transition team, and we aren't even a trapping team cuz our players don't know how to do it properly. our stanley cup run last year, our team wasn't known to do anything spectacular either. it just did enough to get us there and almost win it. management needs to figure out how they want to play the game and go build the future for it. klowe seems to want to play up-tempo grabbing some guys with talent and speed for it while mact wants to play a defensive game playing guys like petersen, thoreson, and reasoner over skill guys like lupul, sykora, or torres on the pp (mind you they are slumping hardcore).
so either A. get the right guys for the style you want to play or B. get the right coach to coach the style you want to play. let's get on the same page and make next season a more enjoyable season than this one.
I am surprised he didn't just clean house with any of the guys he wasn't going to bring back for next year. Move them for anything. A low round draft pick or anything. After all, his philosophy is get something instead of losing them for nothing, right? There are a few guys on the roster that will very likely walk away on July 1 for nothing that he kept that he surely could have gotten SOMETHING for. No reason for that to happen.
Best I can guess is that he totally underestimated the way the team would implode after shipping Smyth out for futures.