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Where does the braintrust go from here?

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Old
02-01-2004, 06:44 PM
  #26
coyote
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Originally Posted by lowetide
At some point, Lowe might fire MacTavish, but imo he hasn't exhausted all avenues. I know the coach is under fire, but in reality alot has gone wrong this season, which I won't bother to restate but we know the list.

Lots of it is the coach, some of it is bad luck. But now that they're here, basically mortally wounded and doomed to a slow death over the next six weeks, Lowe has to make some decisions imo. He can fire the coach, start looking to next year (which is my hope), or make some roster moves that change some aspects of the team.

I love Hemsky, he represents new hope for this organization. Anyone who has followed the Oilers knows first round picks that play even 100 games are pretty rare. But, the coach has little confidence in him, or in Chimera, and certainly not in Jani Rita.

At some level, it's the GM's job to supply players to the coach. If MacTavish and Lowe are meeting today, and MacT says "I need a veteran forward I can count on to kill penalties and not ice the puck when we're up a goal with 1:10 left", that's a pretty reasonable comment.

Jason Chimera has become a bit player on this team. My personal opinion is that he's a pretty darn good hockey player. My opinion doesn't matter.

Craig MacTavish is the coach. He doesn't like Jani Rita, he has shown a tendency to play anyone but Jason Chimera when given a chance, and he chose to blame Ales Hemsky for a goal last night that at least three other Oilers screwed up on (Hemsky's crime was not abandoning his spot on the high wall in time to stop the play after an Oiler turnover as I recall). He gives Torres little ice time compared to his results.

That's 4 forwards on the current roster that MacT doesn't really have alot of confidence in when the game is on the line.

I'm not really comfortable defending MacTavish, because I don't think he's handled this season well at all. However, Marty Reasoner has been gone a long time, and his minutes haven't been replaced. I think the Oilers have been lucky to have a rookie (Stoll) in the middle who has the maturity to do battle against more veteran guys with the game on the line.

But it's patchwork, and now with York gone the pressure is even more pronounced.

It's Kevin Lowe's job to either fire the coach or get him some players he's comfortable sending over the boards.
MacTavish has failed the organization right from the Comrie fiasco. He get's rid of Comrie and don't believe it when they say Lowe did it. Rita; a top prospect has never been given a chance to play here because of the so called vets. Chimera was given a chance after three years in the minors. He was put on the second line with fourth line ice time and as soon as it seemed he was getting some chemistry he was shot down and put on the fourth line or press box. He is the one person who can not make a mistake because Mactavish would not give himanother chance. Salimanin was starting to do well and was sent down. Pisani was doing well on the checking line and hne took him off. Then he sent him to the press box for awhile. Torres was doing exceptionally well with Dvorack and York then he put him down on the forth line. IMO he has poor Hemsky all mixed up. A gifted young player and he put him on the checking line and killing penalties.All the young players have not been handled well. Now he has the senior who has been given so many chances to succeed it makes you sick. Oates was a great player but now he is giving up the puck and is vertually invisable. If our young players were given those chances we would probably have a good hard working team right now

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Old
02-01-2004, 07:02 PM
  #27
Seachd
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lowetide
But for me the bottom line is that once Kevin Lowe defends his coach and says he's secure, then any reasonable person would then begin to ask questions about the GM.

Which is where we are today.
If anything, I'm questioning the players. We've seen they can play well, so why don't they? I know we're sick of hearing this, but we have to have patience. I won't start questioning Lowe until he shows signs of not being able to get a decent team together post-CBA.

MacTavish may be a problem, but I think it's wrong to say he's the problem. The players are getting away with too much here. When it comes to the bottom line, they have to execute, as a team, and they're not doing that.

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Old
02-01-2004, 07:05 PM
  #28
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i agree with that point searchd, however it seems i stress seems to me the players are tuning mact out. yes the players should be held accountable, that is macts and lowes job and so far they are doing a piss poor job of it. if mact has lost the room then there can only be one solution.

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Old
02-01-2004, 07:49 PM
  #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dawgbone
Well I'm beginning to think Mac-T had a one night stand with you and never called back. I am not a Mac-T clone, I just don't choose to jump all over the coach like some mindless puppet simply because it's common practice. It has to be the coaches fault right? I mean, it can't be the players, afterall, the only thing they are doing is playing the game... but I guess that is simply trivial. This isn't football where the coach (in most cases) dictates every single move for every player.

Just like it is your opinion that everything is Mac-T's fault, I don't share that opinion. It's getting really sickening everytime I post someone asks if I am a Mac-T clone..
dawgbone, let's think about this reasonably.

First, I don't think anybody is saying that everything is MacT's fault. He's not the guy that signed Oates. He's not the guy that hired Simpson to help the PP. He's not the guy that got no immediate help in the Comrie trade.

But, last night he WAS the guy that had only one center on the ice for the biggest faceoff of the season. Was simply a matter of putting Stoll and Horcoff. MacT didn't lose the draw, and who knows, maybe the same thing happens if Stoll takes it instead of Moreau, but the point is that it was a dumb move and a sign that MacT isn't a very cerebral coach.

All we ever hear from the guy is that the team needs to play better, and that they have to find ways to score and that they have to this...and they have to that...We don't hear any solutions, only a guy that points out problems. My opinion is that unless your name is Scotty Bowman, you are fair game for some intellegent criticism.

The biggest reason we are not a playoff team is age and lack of experience. Stoll, Torres and Hemsky are expected to carry this team, and that just isn't a fair expectation. They will one day, but not without going through some trials.

I am of the opinion that MacT is the coach for this team. Let's just look at the way Horc is used. Horcoff gets more ice time, he is relied on defensively (even though he was DIRECTLY responsible for two of LAs goals, the first goal and the GWG) and he seemingly never rides the pine for a long stretch. He's a MacT favourite and thus the shortcomings in his game don't get corrected, because they aren't seen as shortcomings at all.

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Old
02-01-2004, 08:08 PM
  #30
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I think the one thing we can look forward to is getting a solid goaltending prospect in the 2004 draft. If Edmonton goes ~8 they have a chance at grabbing Schwarz/Montoya. Ovechkin, Barker, Malkin and Olesz will probably be gone and after them it seems like a bit of a crapshoot as far as defensemen/forwards go (although I admittedly haven't done much homework here).

The Goalie market is saturated right now and it almost seems a waste to spend a top 10 pick on a goalie when it feels like you can trade a couple of third line pluggers for one I’m getting the sense however that this may not last and we’ll regret not jumping on a solid goalie prospect while you could “buy low”.

This would serve the dual purpose of drafting the BPA (which other teams may omit simply due to the market for ‘tenders) and addressing a need. Salo isn’t going to be here next year. Conklin isn’t a starter. JDD isn’t a guarantee. It might take 3 years before they play for the team, but in three years we might be glad we got a goalie while we still could.

Not sure what we’re gonna do in the meantime though. Has anyone thought of what’s going to happen if we don’t sign Salo? Put JDD into a Fleury role? Sign Fuhr (he’s still got that glove hand )?

Crappy goaltending is one of the things that has really cost us the season. I think our future would look a lot brighter with two solid goaltending prospects. Coupled with our defence prospects and the existing guys we'd have a really solid foundation to build on.

In an unrelated matter, the next test for Lowe will be how he handles Smith. We absolutely need to get solid return on this guy but I get the sense we're going to get get reamed like we did in the Comrie deal. Other GM's are circling us like vultures right now, knowing we're desperate and poor.

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Old
02-01-2004, 08:20 PM
  #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Seperatory Funnel
I think the one thing we can look forward to is getting a solid goaltending prospect in the 2004 draft. If Edmonton goes ~8 they have a chance at grabbing Schwarz/Montoya. Ovechkin, Barker, Malkin and Olesz will probably be gone and after them it seems like a bit of a crapshoot as far as defensemen/forwards go (although I admittedly haven't done much homework here).

The Goalie market is saturated right now and it almost seems a waste to spend a top 10 pick on a goalie when it feels like you can trade a couple of third line pluggers for one I’m getting the sense however that this may not last and we’ll regret not jumping on a solid goalie prospect while you could “buy low”.

This would serve the dual purpose of drafting the BPA (which other teams may omit simply due to the market for ‘tenders) and addressing a need. Salo isn’t going to be here next year. Conklin isn’t a starter. JDD isn’t a guarantee. It might take 3 years before they play for the team, but in three years we might be glad we got a goalie while we still could.

Not sure what we’re gonna do in the meantime though. Has anyone thought of what’s going to happen if we don’t sign Salo? Put JDD into a Fleury role? Sign Fuhr (he’s still got that glove hand )?

Crappy goaltending is one of the things that has really cost us the season. I think our future would look a lot brighter with two solid goaltending prospects. Coupled with our defence prospects and the existing guys we'd have a really solid foundation to build on.

In an unrelated matter, the next test for Lowe will be how he handles Smith. We absolutely need to get solid return on this guy but I get the sense we're going to get get reamed like we did in the Comrie deal. Other GM's are circling us like vultures right now, knowing we're desperate and poor.
But thats the thing, isnt it? There is saturation in the goalie market. Buffalo is sitting on a goldmine. Atlanta still has Nurminen and Lehtonen (Not to mention the Dafoe mistake). Columbus has Pascal Leclaire playing in the AHL. With Turco, theres no way Bacashihua gets a fair chance in the next 3-4 years. Ahonen pretty much knows he'll never play for the Devils fulltime. These are all quality guys, and I dare to say they all have similar upside to any 1st round goaltender you take in the upcoming draft. And their price wont be high (aside from Lehtonen, whos not available, and Leclaire, who would cost high). Sure, Montoya would be nice, but not with the top 1st round pick. And I doubt Schwarz is even available when we pick.

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Old
02-01-2004, 11:44 PM
  #32
Brock
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chit94
Good post.

IMO chemistry is the problem with the team this year. MacT's blender has been on high this year and the team is confused. This is a very young team and they need proper coaching. Sure Lowe has said that MacT is one of the best coaches in the league, and I bet he is. Just NOT for this team.
That's a good point as well.

Maybe Craig Mactavish is a good coach, who knows. He just isn't a good fit for the current direction of this team. It would be like taking Pat Quinn and putting him on the Oilers. Quinn is a great coach, don't get me wrong, it's just that he isn't the greatest when it comes to developing young players. Where as you look at a guy like Jacques Martin in Ottawa. That's the type of coach the Oilers need, someone who is great with one.....motivating and two with young, developing players.

You know, I hate to say it, but doesn't this sound like a job for Mike Keenan? Keenan may not have a long shelf life, but he does a few things very well as a coach, and the two things he does well are the two things that the Oilers need most. A coach who can motivate the players and develop the young guys.

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Old
02-02-2004, 01:10 AM
  #33
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I guess if Lowe thinks MacTavish is one of the best coaches in the league, the solution has become clear. Either ownership fires the coach, or they turf everyone including Lowe.

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