2015 NHL Playoff Predictions


The 2015 NHL Stanley Cup playoffs begin today and as we do every year, the Hockey Fanatic is pleased to make our predictions for which team will win the Stanley Cup.  With the help of NHL.com’s bracket challenge, here is a look at who we think will win the 2015 Stanley Cup.

2015 NHL Stanley Cup Predictions

While I really would like a Canadian team to win the Stanley Cup, I am predicting an Original Six Final between the Chicago Blackhawks and New York Rangers.  The Hawks will capture another championship.  Now there are a few teams in the West who may have something to say about this namely the St.Louis Blues and the Winnipeg Jets who for me could be the dark horse of this year`s Playoffs.  On the East Side, Montreal, Tampa Bay and for some reason I feel the Ottawa Senators all have a great chance of getting to the Finals.

My dream matchup for the Stanley Cup Finals?  Probably the Winnipeg Jets vs. Ottawa Senators, or the Jets vs. Montreal Canadiens or the Jets vs. the Tampa Bay Lightning.  It begins tonight, like many hockey fans we cannot wait.  Good luck to all of the sixteen teams who qualified for the post season.
2015 Stanley Cup Predictions

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Hockey Fanatic 2014-2015 Year-End NHL Awards


Well as another NHL regular season has come to an end, we thought that it would be fun to give out The Hockey Fanatics awards for performance based on efforts from the 2014-2015 NHL regular season.  Normally the hockey writers focus on activity from out East, but we have selected the top performers and a few underachievers from the past season.

2014-15 NHL Awards

The Martin Brodeur Award – Top Goalie

Western Conference:  Devan Dubnyk – Minnesota Wild
Eastern Conference: Carey Price – Montreal Canadiens

The Bob Gainey Award – Top Defensive Forward

Western Conference:  Johnathan Toews – Chicago Blackhawks
Eastern Conference: Max Pacioretty – Montreal Canadiens

The Paul Coffey Award – Top Offensive Defenseman

Western Conference:  Brent Burns – San Jose Sharks
Eastern Conference: Erik Karlsson – Ottawa Senators

The Teemu Selanne Award – Most Exciting Player

Western Conference:  Johnny Gaudreau – Calgary Flames
Eastern Conference: John Tavares – New York Islanders

The Mark Messier Award – Top Captain Leadership Award

Western Conference:  Johnathan Toews – Chicago Blackhawks
Eastern Conference: Alex Ovechkin – Washington Capitals

The Cam Neely Award – Top Power Forward

Western Conference:  Ryan Getzlaf – Anaheim Ducks
Eastern Conference: Chris Kreider – New York Rangers

The Wayne Gretzky Award – Most Points

Western Conference:  Jamie Benn – Dallas Stars
Eastern Conference: John Taveres – New York Islanders

The Marty St. Louis Award – Most Surprising Player

Western Conference:  Devan Dubnyk – Minnesota Wild
Eastern Conference: Scott Hartnell – Columbus Blue Jackets

The Edmonton Oilers of the Eighties Award – Most Exciting Team to Watch

Western Conference:  Winnipeg Jets
Eastern Conference: Ottawa Senators

The Toronto Maple Leafs Post 1967 Award – Most Disappointing Team to Watch

Western Conference:  Edmonton Oilers
Eastern Conference: Toronto Maple Leafs

The Patrick Stefan Award – Most Disappointing Effort

Western Conference:  Dustin Brown – Los Angeles Kings / Ben Scrivens – Edmonton Oilers (tie)
Eastern Conference: Vincent Lecavalier – Philadelphia Flyers

The Charlie Huddy Award – Unsung Hero

Western Conference:  Joe Thornton – San Jose Sharks
Eastern Conference: Kyle Turris – Ottawa Senators

The Alexander Daigle Award – Most Overrated Player

Western Conference:  Dustin Brown – Los Angeles Kings
Eastern Conference: Marc-Andre Fleury – Pittsburgh Penguins

The Scotty Bowman Award – Top Coach

Western Conference:  Paul Maurice – Winnipeg Jets
Eastern Conference: Alain Vigneault – New York Rangers

The Bryan Murray Award – Top GM

Western Conference:  Kevin Cheveldayoff – Winnipeg Jets / Brad Treliving – Calgary Flames (tie)
Eastern Conference: Bryan Murray – Ottawa Senators

The Bob Probert Award – Toughest Player

Western Conference:  Dustin Byfuglien – Winnipeg Jets
Eastern Conference: Scott Hartnell – Columbus Blue Jackets

The Broad Street Bullies Award – Toughest Team to Play Against

Western Conference:  Winnipeg Jets
Eastern Conference: New York Rangers

The Joe Sakic Award – Most Gentlemanly Player

Western Conference:  Daniel Sedin – Vancouver Canucks
Eastern Conference: Mark Stone – Ottawa Senators

The Trevor Linden Award – Most Popular Player

Western Conference:  Johnathan Toews – Chicago Blackhawks
Eastern Conference: Carey Price – Montreal Canadiens

The Grant Fuhr Award – Most Exciting Goalie Award

Western Conference:  Devan Dubnyk – Minnesota Wild
Eastern Conference: Carey Price – Montreal Canadiens

The Luc Robitaille Award – Most Underrated Player

Western Conference:  Jiri Hudler – Calgary Flames
Eastern Conference: Roberto Luongo – Florida Panthers

The Comeback Award – Most improved Player

Western Conference:  Ryan Nugent Hopkins – Edmonton Oilers / Devan Dubnyk – Minnesota Wild (tie)
Eastern Conference: Nick Foligno – Columbus Blue Jackets

The Ray Bourque Award – Top Rookie

Western Conference:  Johnny Gaudreau – Calgary Flames
Eastern Conference: Mark Stone – Ottawa Senators

The Golden Brett Award – Top Goal Scorer

Western Conference:  Tyler Seguin – Dallas Stars
Eastern Conference: Alex Ovechkin – Washington Capitals

The Bobby Orr Award – Top Defensemen Award

Western Conference:  Dennis Wideman – Calgary Flames
Eastern Conference: Erik Karlsson – Ottawa Senators

The Jean Beliveau Award – All-Around Effort

Western Conference:  Devan Dubnyk – Minnesota Wild
Eastern Conference: John Tavares – New York Islanders

The Gordie Howe Award – Top Overall Player

Western Conference:  Jamie Benn – Dallas Stars
Eastern Conference: Carey Price – Montreal Canadiens

The Montreal Canadiens Team to Beat Award – Most Likely to Win the Stanley Cup

Western Conference:  Chicago Blackhawks
Eastern Conference: New York Rangers

We will have our Stanley Cup Playoff predictions for you coming up shortly.

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Top NHL Headlines of the Week


As the NHL trade deadline approaches, we examine some of the top NHL headlines leading up to what we feel may be a quiet trade deadline this season.  Let’s hope some NHL GMs prove us wrong and make a few old fashioned hockey trades.

  1. Canadian NHL teams are not a preferred destination for many NHLer’s – ok tell us something we didn’t know. This is unfortunate and a reason why the Canadian teams have not been able to be regular Cup contenders in recent years.  Definite impact on potential trades for teams like the Oilers, Jets, Sens and Leafs.  According to an interesting report from ESPN’s Craig Custance, four of the top five teams on NHL players’ no-trade list are located in Canada.
  2. Pittsburgh Penguins showing the wrong kind of fight – the Pens have struggled a little as of late.  As Sportsnet reported, “Frustrated and fed up, Sidney Crosby encouraged Brandon Dubinsky to drop the gloves. The Columbus Blue Jackets centre and frequent tormentor of the Pittsburgh Penguins star eagerly obliged. The fight was a draw. The game was not. Dubinsky’s stick – and not his fists – provided the technical knockout.”
  3. Edmonton Oilers win epic shootout to earn first win vs Bruins since 2001 – twenty four shooters and only one goal.  Oilers defencemen Martin Marincin was the only goal scorer in a 12-round shootout between Edmonton and the Boston Bruins on Wednesday.  The Oilers first win over the Bruins in 13 games.
  4. The NHL added advanced stats on its website – I’m an online marketing guy so I look at analytics daily so I wasn’t surprised upon hearing news that the NHL has finally added advanced stats on their flagship web property.  The league announced Friday it is overhauling the statistics on its website to include advanced metrics. The multiyear partnership with software and database company SAP eventually will include searchable statistics dating to the league’s inaugural season in 1917-18. There will be 45 enhanced statistics that have grown increasingly popular in recent years by those in search of advanced metrics to measure possession and other facets of the game beyond goals and assists. The overhaul will be done in four phases, a process that started Friday with the addition of advanced statistics to the league’s website.
  5. Rookie goalie nets first career win vs. Habs – Ottawa Senators goaltender Andrew Hammond to talk about earning his first career NHL win against the Montreal Canadiens.  Andrew Hammond made 42 saves in his first NHL start and led the Ottawa Senators to a 4-2 win over the Montreal Canadiens Wednesday night.

A big weekend with the NHL Stadium series continuing with the Los Angeles Kings taking on the San Jose Sharks on Saturday night.

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Top 14 Hockey Stories of 2014


Today is the final day of 2014 and what a year it was.  As we enter 2015 hockey tournaments are in fill force throughout the world, the NHL has resumed after their Christmas break and the NHL’s Winter Classic is amongst us.  We’ve seen epic comebacks, trials and tribulations and in some cases we have seen epic failure (read: Edmonton Oilers).  Regardless 2014 was an exciting year to be a hockey fan.  Here is a look back at some of the top stories from 2014.

Top 14 Hockey Stories of 2014

  1. The Passing of Jean Beliveau – famed Montreal Canadien Jean Beliveau passed away on December 2, 2014.  Tributes and memories of one of the games greatest players continue to pour in.  Jean Believeau was rated #10 in out top hockey players of all-time perhaps he should be higher on the list for his contributions to the game of hockey.  A winner of 10 Stanley Cup trophies, Mr. Beliveau was an even greater gentleman than he was a hockey player.  Prime Minister Stephen Harper, a hockey historian himself, issued a statement and offered his condolences. “Mr. Béliveau will be remembered as a hockey giant who inspired a nation with his outstanding skill, humility and pure love of the game… His legacy lives on in the records he set, the legions of hockey players that he inspired, and the deep love he shared with his home province of Quebec.”  A true gentleman of the game on and off of the ice.  CBC Tribute.
  2. Canada wins Double Olympic Gold in Sochi, Russia – both the men’s and women’s team won Olympic Gold at the Winter Olympics in Russia in February.  The Women’s team did in in very impressive manner as they beat the favored team from the US. Canada's Women Hockey Gold
  3. The Los Angeles Kings win their second Stanley Cup in three years – The Kings came back down three games to zero in the first round vs. the San Jose Sharks and never looked back.  They needed two more Game 7 wins (against Anaheim in the second round and Chicago in the Western Conference Final) before moving on to the Stanley Cup Final where they won their second Stanley Cup in a three-year stretch in 2014 when they defeated the New York Rangers on an Alec Martinez Game 5 overtime goal.
  4. The utter collapse of the Edmonton Oilers – since losing in game seven of the Stanley Cup finals in 2006, the Oilers have missed the post season for 8 straight years and with only 8 wins this season will miss the playoffs for a ninth consecutive season.  This team is in disarray having fired yet another coach in Dallas Eakins.  There is a lot of talent being trained to lose.  What is wrong with the Edmonton Oilers?  Too many things to mention as we evaluated hereOilers Jersey on Ice
  5. NHL Broadcasts in Canada switch to Rogers – in a move that made many hockey fans cringe, Rogers Sportnet basically owns hockey viewership in Canada after Rogers acquired rights to all NHL hockey broadcasts in Canada. In November 2013 the League announced a landmark 12-year, $5.2-billion national broadcast rights and multimedia agreement in Canada with Rogers Communications. The deal includes all national rights to NHL games on all platforms in all languages, marking the first time in history a North American professional sports league has granted all of its national rights to one company long-term.  Hockey Night in Canada remains a shell of its former self.  It’s just not fan coming from this hockey fan.
  6. The Retirement of Teemu Selanne – The Finnish Flash finished his last NHL season in 2014.  Teemu Selanne retired sitting 15th with 1,457 points and 11th with 684 goals.
  7. Ex-NHLers continue lawsuit against NHL over concussions – what started in 2014 continued this past year as ten former National Hockey League players, including All-Star forward Gary Leeman, claimed in a class-action lawsuit that the league hasn’t done enough to protect players from concussions.
  8. The retirement of Saku Koivu – sad to see a player of this calibre retire as Saku Koivu retired this past season after 18 years in the NHL.
  9. The Retirement of Ryan Smyth – I must admit a few tears were shed over this one as Edmonton Oiler great Ryan Smyth announced his retirement from the game.  Oilers management did not do much to make Smyth’s last games memorable as the Oilers woes continued in 2014.  Possibly the greatest Edmonton Oiler of all time.
  10. Finland wins 2014 WJHC – Finland defeated host team Sweden in the final 3–2 in overtime and won their first gold medal since 1998.
  11. Vancouver ends their goaltending debacle – Remember when the Vancouver Canucks had themselves a goaltending problem with too much good goaltending in Cory Schneider and Roberto Luongo? What a botched job Mike Gillis had on his hands.  Gillis then pulled off a shocker at the 2013 NHL Draft by trading Cory Schneider, not Roberto Luongo, to the New Jersey Devils. Luongo and his seemingly unmoveable contract was set to play out the rest of his career with the Canucks.  Luongo even stated that his “contract sucks”.  Gillis would shock the hockey world once again at the 2014 trade deadline by trading Luongo (and Steven Anthony) to the Florida Panthers for forward Shawn Matthias and goaltender Jacob Markstrom.  Then via free agency the Canucks picked up Ryan Miller who has performed remarkably for the Canucks this season.
  12. The issue of diving gets more attention – The Nashville Predators’ James Neal was the first NHL player to be fined and publicly named for diving — but there’s a good chance he won’t be the last.  In an effort to eliminate diving from hockey, the league revised its protocol when it comes to punishment. As per the recently revised rule, players will receive a warning along with a $1,000 fine for their first diving offence. Any further cases will be met with a $2,000 fine as well as the player’s name being released.  Diving is big news.  NHL Diving
  13. Mumps Outbreak in the NHL – a number of players including the Penguins Sidney Crosby have contacted the mumps in an early season outbreak.
  14. The Edmonton Oil Kings win the Memorial Cup – well at least there was some hockey supremacy in Edmonton this season.  The Edmonton Oil Kings win their first Memorial Cup in modern franchise history with a dramatic 6-3 win over Guelph.  Edmonton was playing two days after winning the longest game in Memorial Cup history, needing three overtimes to beat the Val-d’Or Foreurs in the semifinal Friday.  Guelph led 2-1 after one period, but Edmonton scored three times in the second to take a 4-2 lead and won 6-3 over the OHL representative.

As a bonus here is a look at some of the Gross Moments from the NHL courtesy of Sportsnet.  Check this out for some memorable moments.

Some great moments and some truly sad moments made 2014 a year to remember in the hockey world.

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The Futility of the Edmonton Oilers Part II


Earlier this week we began our three part series on the futility of the Edmonton Oilers.  With only six wins in the first quarter of the season and no wins against Western Conference teams, we are examining the sad state affairs of the NHL’s northernmost team.  There are a lot of changes that need to happen with this team and as the team is amidst a seven game losing streak we do expect some changes.  This week they finally fired their goaltending coach, but really that is not going turn things around.  Their goaltending has been horrendous.  There is no scoring and not much grit on the team.  The Oilers have lost seven straight and have been outscored 26-11 in the first period this year, and that’s just the recent woes of this beleaguered franchise.  So where do the Oilers go from here?  The news on the team has not been great in recent years.

Edmonton Oilers Stats from the Past 8 Seasons

Here are some numbers that do not hide just how poorly this team has played.

  • Edmonton Oilers have averaged 30 wins per season in the 8 years that they have missed the playoffs.
  • Oilers have averaged 39 losses per season (41 if you prorate the lockout shortened season) more than the league average of 30.
  • The Oilers have averaged a mere 73 points over the past 8 seasons (proarated for lockout shortened season). This is 21% below the League average.
  • The Oilers havre averaged 2.52 Goals per Game over the past 8 years. The avergage team in the NHL scores 9% more than the Oilers.
  • The Oilers have averaged 2.94 goals against per game over the past 8 season. The NHL average is 2.74. This season they are giving up a staggering 3.48 goals per game. Nearly a goal per game more than the league average of 2.68.

Wins

Season # of Oilers Wins League Avg.
 06/07 32 41
 07/08 41 41
 08/09 38 41
 09/10 27 41
 10/11 25 41
 11/12 32 41
 12/13 19 24
 13/14 29 41

Losses

Season # of Oiler Losses League Avg.
 06/07 43 32
 07/08 35 32
 08/09 35 32
 09/10 47 31
 10/11 45 31
 11/12 40 31
 12/13 22 19
 13/14 44 31

Points

Season Points by Oilers League Avg.
 06/07 71 91
 07/08 88 91
 08/09 85 91
 09/10 62 92
 10/11 62 92
 11/12 74 92
 12/13 45 53
 13/14 67 92

The Western Conference is a beast to play in.  You need nearly 100 points to qualify for the playoffs in this season.  The Oilers simply are not good enough to even come close to qualifying for the playoffs.

Edmonton Oilers Regular Season Points Totals

Goals For

Season Oilers Goals For League Avg.
 06/07 2.34 2.88
 07/08 2.68 2.72
 08/09 2.78 2.85
 09/10 2.51 2.77
 10/11 2.33 2.73
 11/12 2.52 2.66
 12/13 2.56 2.65
 13/14 2.43 2.68

Goals Against

Season Oilers Goals Against League Avg.
 06/07 2.99 2.88
 07/08 3.01 2.72
 08/09 2.98 2.85
 09/10 2.51 2.77
 10/11 3.17 2.73
 11/12 2.83 2.66
 12/13 2.73 2.65
 13/14 3.26 2.67

 

 

Last week on TSN’s The Reporters, the Panel chimed in with their thoughts.  Here is a quick synopsis of that conversation:

Michael Farber: I think what we have in Edmonton is all the Chicken Littles saying ‘the sky is falling’. I’m not sure if that’s true, but you can see the ozone layer, and things are truly bad there. Given the make-up of the team I don’t see it getting better, certainly with the problems in goal.

Steve Simmons: I feel sick for Dallas Eakins, frankly. I believed when he went to Edmonton that he would be able to fix some of these problems, that he would be the answer, and I watched last night and I saw a team that just doesn’t care. The players should be embarrassed with their efforts. This is rock bottom for the Edmonton Oilers, of all the rock bottoms that we’ve seen, this is Rock Bottom.

Bruce Arthur: Whoa, whoa, whoa. One of the silliest things that people ever say in this world, not just in sports, is well at least things can’t get any worse. Of course it can get worse.

Dave Hodge: I don’t think it can, honestly I don’t. It gets better, I don’t know how, but it has to get better than that.

Bruce Arthur: How many times have we said this in the last five years?

Hodge: Well it’ll get different, how about that?

 Arthur: That I can agree with. The funny thing is, this team has played better this season, but the goaltending hasn’t been up to it. Ben Scrivens is a wonderful guy, but he has not been the answer there, and either has Viktor Fasth. They have trouble in goal, and what happens is … they were playing better, but if you watched last night from some of those goals, that was a team that knew it was going to lose and didn’t much care about it. It just entered that cycle of the same old thing, again and again. I don’t know what it’s going to take to break this, but I’m not sure if the young players in Edmonton aren’t being damaged beyond repair in terms of their habits, and in terms of what they expect from the NHL.

Hodge: After they lost to New Jersey they said ‘we have to try harder, we’re not trying hard enough’. And then, 7-1 against Chicago.”

Broken OilersOne thing is for certain frustration is at an all-time high.  Here is what some of the fans are saying on sites like the Edmonton Journal, TSN and other hockey sites.  This is straight from the fans:

“Good point about over playing the kids. Management is STILL pushing this philosophy even today, when the vast majority of successful teams have been rolling 4 lines for years already. Eakins plays the stuffing out of the top line because he is told to play them all the time. Yet another failed philosophy from Lowe and his days in the 80’s.”

“I voted for “Senior Management should be replaced”. Not sure if that sure include MacT or if he deserves a little more time. Kevin Lowe has been at the helm of this rebuild from day one and imho his time is done. I can’t believe I’m even going to say what I’m about to given that up until this year agreeing with, or even quoting Brian Burke would cause me a coronary episode but…here it goes anyways. I now agree with what Burke said during the Burke vs Lowe feud…(paraphrasing)…”Kevin Lowe has taken a once respected team and organization and run it into the sewer…”…or something like that.

Love Burke or hate him ( I actually lean towards the later) but all one has to do is look a few hours south and see what he’s done with that team. A team that shows up every night, plays hard, wins some games and does so with what some might suggest is limited talent.

Ok…that said, I’m off to get myself hooked up to an EKG monitor…I feel heart palpitations coming on.”

“been on this sinking ship before. kevin and darryl; thanks for ruining pro hockey in edmonton. taylor, jordan, nuge, hope you can get off this floating ark asap. for the rest of you, run, don’t walk, to get out of here; it’s dead man walking. fans, maybe someday somebody who doesn’t have 6 rings but knows hockey will build us a team. no rush darryl, hockey should be the money loser in your portfolio but isn’t, but it could be if you continue to let 6 rings piss on the crops.”

“Only one solution left to effect REAL change because this situation has gone beyond a joke – class action lawsuit against ownership and management by season ticket holders for breach of contract. A ticket to an NHL hockey game is a contract with a promise that you will deliver an NHL calibre team. It’s obvious that this owner and management team has adopted the Harold Ballard approach – ice a mediocre team, charge as much as you can get away with for tickets, and pocket the profits, because they know Edmonton fans will show up to watch 20 chimpanzees on roller skates wearing Edmonton Oiler jerseys. It is quite obvious to me that this management team has consciously taken steps not to improve this team — hiring Dallas Eakins, an inexperienced, OHL calibre coach when there were several experienced coaches available (Maurice, Laviolette, etc.), failing every season for the past eight years to secure an NHL calibre starting goalie when they were available (Cory Sneider, Bernier, Bishop, etc.), drafting small, one-dimensional players every year, and then running a hockey school every year for both the coach and players, on the season ticket holder’s dime, to try to teach millionaires how to pass the puck, stick handle the puck, shoot the puck, and then skate back and defend. This concept seems beyond this group. Until this group of country club management buffoons start to realize that the ticket-paying Edmonton fans have had it, they won’t change – guaranteed, and this team will continue to be done by American Thanksgiving because there is no financial motivation to do otherwise. Yeah, I’m partly to blame. Maybe I would pay to see those chimps.”

“When you look for the one thing that has not changed in Edmonton,The one thing consistent with it,s losing record is Management! Not the players and not the coaching.The big brass has been responsible for the team period.Kevin Lowe and his cronies.Scouting,what a terrible job they have done!What makes a team special is heart and this team needs a transplant.How many of these players would play on a team coached by a Sutter?If you don,t have what it takes to play for one of them you can not be a successful NHL player.Heart equals talent!”

“If Katz fired Lowe, It would be like the playoffs for me. I got respect for Kevin, but he needs to realize that the team needs a new start and direction and thats not coming from within. Sure he can land a job scouting or with Hockey Canada.”

“Eakins and Chabot should be fired. One ruins the players the other the goalies. Players and goalies come here and get worse.”

“Looking back, taking Hall was the beginning of one mistake after another. Taking a winger over a center when then we’re so close only made sense to Oiler management. That along with giving Horcroft a crazy contract. Since then things have gone from bad to worst. This team is crying out for real leadership, Eakings talks a good game and of course Mac T is busy making bold moves. The end result is this team has become the poster team of how not to run a hockey team. Clearly the mix of this team is wrong and trading Perron is merely a drop in the ocean. A total re-build is needed by different management. This is the painful truth.”

“No one has mentioned Sheldon Souray lately. When he spoke out against the direction the Oilers were going they completely humiliated him and it had some effect on the players. Paying him an NHL salary and keeping him in the minors for a full year was total mis management I guess that is why Perron is being shoped.Oh, don’t say anything about KL or MT or your ass will be out of here. Hope more Oiler players speak out.”

“As much as I hate to admit it – I think we saw the best approach for repairing a broken franchise in Vancouver where they started at the top and rebuilt the organization with fresh faces and a fresh outlook. Although I believe Kevin Lowe needs to go – it’s not out of spite or anger – one could actually argue that if it wasn’t for Lowes guidance through the community ownership years – Edmonton might not even have a team anymore.

What we do need is a proven hockey man – who then hires a proven GM – who then hires a proven coach – and then and only then – a well thought out strategy of player trades and acquisitions that fit into a sound strategy of competing in the western conference. No point in building a team to compete in the East when it takes giants to even get into the playoffs in the west.”

“When management doesn’t do the right thing and move Chabot out during the Summer then of course they are behind the 8 ball and can’t get anyone with NHL bonafides to take over. This is how one mistake leads to the next and how teams remain in the basement for years and years despite trying to fix things.”

“Now, the team is grossly underachieving relative to its ability. That’s the coach clearly not doing his job. A great coach will maximize his roster, and get the team to overachieve (see, e.g., Dave Tippett, Mike Babcock). A terrible coach will have a good roster and fail to get that team to its potential. That sums up Eakins’ coaching this year.”

“MacT and Eakins are joined at the hip right now… If MacT cuts him loose the subsequent pressor will BBQ MacT… Both he an KL dread the thought of repeating that disaster of a press conference- disaster for them off course – upon Kruger’s Skype firing… Although for the media KL is the gift that keeps on giving as they can always count on a gaffe and at least one foot in his mouth…”

Even Chris Chelios chimed in saying that the Oilers can’t hide their lack of work ethic.

The “Decade of Debacle” is upon us.  As an Edmonton Oilers fan there appears to be no way out of this abyss.  With that the Oilers just lost their eighth game in a row with a 1-0 OT loss in Nashville.  Can management please step down now?  Or at lest make another coaching change?

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