Lordy lordy, what a return from the bye week it has been! The Oilers were on fire last night and had a great showing on Hockey Day in Canada! I’ll be honest, I was a bit worried that they’d come out of that week off with more rust than my first car! Luckily Connor was there to reassure me that the Oilers had shaken off that rust.
Jesse Puljujarvi folks! I think he was probably the last player I figured would dominate that game but boy was he a beast out there! I was on the Oilers Live Podcast after the game and we were talking about how the Oilers might fill the hole on McDavid’s left wing after they trade Pat Maroon (nice 2 goals by the way) and my thoughts were if that 2nd line of Lucic, Draisaitl, and Puljujarvi could dominate like that on a nightly basis, I’d have ZERO qualms with McLellan putting Nuge on Connor’s wing, as RNH seems to be a MUCH BETTER shooter than playmaker. I think the 3rd line is really starting to find itself and what I mean by that is Khaira and Strome are finding chemistry as I’ve been impressed with their performances recently.
Darnell Nurse on the PP was really a breath of fresh air. I’ve gotten a bit sick of seeing Klefbom and Benning out there, to be honest. The thing with Darnell is that I’m not sure we’ll find his maximum effectiveness coming from his shot. I think it’ll come from his skating and rushing. Sean from theoilknight.ca was also on the podcast with me had mentioned he’d watched a lot of Nurse in the OHL when Nurse played for Sault Ste. Marie and that the dman had one helluva one-timer. I think last night wasn’t enough for me to make a definitive judgement on Nurse as the PP QB but I like what I saw enough that I HAVE to see more!
Can we get some Slepyshev in the next game please? Mike Cammalleri had a shocking game vs. Vancouver last night. That 5-bell special he gifted Brock Boeser in the 1st period was mad! As if that’s the guy you want barreling down on Talbot. He had some other poor plays later in the game too. It simply wasn’t his night.
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Let’s move on to the Paul Coffey hiring.
I don’t feel like this is a bad hire and I’m all for having more smart guys in the room whether they’re part of the old boys club or not. Look, I get that there’s a faction of the fanbase who get really pissed off when the Oilers hire someone from their glory days but there aren’t a lot of players in the history of the NHL that can speak to the kind of ups and downs that young players deal with like the OBC. If they can offer something that isn’t being offered within the team now, how is it going to hurt?
He doesn’t have the professional resume! Is what the naysayers will shout from their huts. And they’re not wrong either but it doesn’t matter. He’ll be with the team until they see fit to give him an ambassador tag. I mean MacTavish’s contract has run out but he’s still with the organization. What’s Messier doing these days? I just reckon these boys are on the year-to-year deals until someone says they’re not.
I do feel like the hire wasn’t Chiarelli’s doing though. It was Gretzky’s move and that says to me that there’s a disconnect between the brass up top and the GM. Which you can add to the disconnect between the GM and the coach and lastly, the special teams coaches and the players.
It tells me that perhaps Mr.Coffey is joining to find out what the hell the issue is and report back to Gretzky and Bob Nicholson.
You might be asking yourself why that is and I’m of the belief that the men above wanted Chiarelli to let one of the assistant coaches go and when Chiarelli took that request to McLellan, the head coach refused to sign off on it.
So in the end, loyalty, not a poor performance on the coaches’ or GM’s part, might see them out on their butts this summer. I mean we know that Chiarelli will stick with his head coach through thick and thin as he did with Claude Julien in Boston. And I’m not opposed to that. This organization has been through WAY too much turnover in the last 10 years, right?
If you look at Winnipeg and how their ownership has stuck with their GM and coach through all of these lean years, it’s paid off. As opposed to Buffalo for example, where they cleaned house AGAIN this past summer and it’s not paying off for them at all. What do you do?
Hire Paul Coffey in a skills coach role, right?
How different is this title to that of say, Ryan Smyth’s?
We’re being told that Coffey will help the young dmen throughout the Oilers organization, be that players that are in junior still, the AHL, or the NHL.
Lowetide is going to have something up later on detailing Coffey’s addition over at the Athletic.
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If it were me, I’d have axed those asst. coaches long ago, contacted Darryl Sutter and Dan Bylsma to see if they’d be interested in forming a sort of MEGA-Coaching personnel for the rest of the year and re-evaluated this summer.
I have heard Dean Lombardi’s name out there in connection to the Oilers too though… So we’ll see.
First off, I’ll tell you that I get all sorts of messages in my DMs from people claiming to be on the inside. Some are outright ridiculous and some are thought-provoking but I wanted to share this one with you to let you pick it apart.
Apparently, Vegas wants Erik Karlsson and Karlsson wants Vegas but Ottawa wants a player out of Edmonton that the Oilers won’t include in a deal to get Hoffman and the Sens don’t want to take a whole lot of money back in ANY deal. So Vegas is offering William Karlsson (yeah, the 20 goal guy) and Nate Schmidt to Edmonton for “that player” so they can package him with some other assets to acquire Karlsson from Ottawa.
Where it falls apart for me is Vegas dealing its no.1 centre and a LH’d dman to Edmonton… Regardless if Karlsson is a UFA, he’s the teams best pivot and why in the hell would Edmonton want another leftie on D?
You gotta wonder sometimes…
What do you think? Leave your comments below!