Kukla's Korner Hockey
Actually it should have been the Evening Line but I have been trying to limit my 'work' hours to about 13 hours a day during the pre-season...
via Dan Tencer tweets,
I wouldn't be disappointed at all if MacIntyre's sole role here included a focus on skill players on any team that runs around on the Oilers
To me, heavyweight vs. heavyweight fights are predictable and don't affect the other players. Want impact? Affect the other players.
MacIntyre doesn't need to be proactive, necessarily. He just needs the other team to believe that he'll be very, very reactive. Could work.
from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,
For years now, Oilers’ opponents have looked at the pre-game lineup sheet in search of the type of player who might deter those kinds of plays, and they’ve seen an open stretch of highway. Sure, Mike Brown stepped up to fight Weise to a draw, but he stands just five-foot-10 and is a cruiserweight at best. It was an admirable response, but not enough of a deterrent to keep opponents from taking liberties with the Oilers.
But that all changed Monday when the Oilers picked up a nuclear deterrent in Steve MacIntyre, claiming him off waivers from Pittsburgh. MacIntyre played one game for the Penguins last season, racking up 12 penalty minutes. In 91 career games, the six-foot-five, 250-pound winger has four points and 175 PIM, including 17 fights. There’d be more, if more players had the stones to take him on.
As a Calgary Flame, defenceman Robyn Regehr made a nightly ritual of hammering on Ales Hemsky. Hall and Nugent-Hopkins have both had shoulder surgeries early in their careers. Now Gagner has a busted jaw. Why wouldn’t a Weise or an Andrew Alberts make an impression by running a young, small-ish Oilers skill player? The upside for them is big, the downside nonexistent. Not any longer.
As Sunday night’s brawl between the Toronto Maple Leafs and the Buffalo Sabres proved again, stupidity is frequently a hallmark of the NHL exhibition season, when the goons and the wannabes are all trying to catch an organization’s attention.
Every year, the NHL playoffs provide the most entertaining and sensibly played hockey of the season. It’s far superior to the regular season, which in turn, is miles ahead of the preseason. Year in and year out, exhibition hockey remains a tedious, tiresome minefield for teams to skirt as carefully as possible, lest there be the sort of unintended consequences that have occurred - 10 games on the sidelines for the Leafs’ David Clarkson (who will be suspended for leaving the bench to join the fight) or an indefinite time in sick bay for Gagner .
For Edmonton especially, in a year when the Oilers legitimately believe they can end a seven-year playoff drought, this is no way to start.
-Eric Duhatschek of the Globe and Mail where you can read more on the injury issues with the Oilers.
You can watch both hits in this video via Sportsnet. The Weise hit on Hall is around the :25 second mark and the hit on Gagner is at the 1:05 mark but you only have a far away view of that hit.
added 5:41pm, from the Vancouver Province,
Vancouver Canuck wingers Dale Weise and Zack Kassian have disciplinary hearings with the NHL head office over the phone Monday morning for events that occurred in Saturday’s game against the Edmonton Oilers.
If you scroll to the 1:05 mark of the video below, you can see Zack Kasian (double minor) hit Gagner with a high-stick. Not a very good shot of the play, but it ia all we have right now...
added 3:58pm, A YouTube version is below with even more details.
from Damien Cox of The Spin,
What's good for P.K. Subban or Logan Couture or Nazem Kadri, no sir, that's not good enough for the Mightly Oil, and maybe they're right.
Maybe their young players are that damn good. And good on 'em for believing in the drafted products of years of losing.
But let's face it, as soon as Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall signed monster long-term deals just before the lockout, it was more than obvious that Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, no matter how problematic his shoulder issues may be, was going to get the same treatment when his turn came, no questions asked.
As will Nail Yakupov, presumably, after this year. If none of Eberle, Hall or RNH had to wait for the expiry of their entry level contracts before getting a massive extension, you can bet Yakupov, as a former No. 1 pick, won't be interested in the team suddenly taking a hard line with him.
See, with the Oilers, it's not exactly about rewarding these young players for what they actually do or have done. In fact, it's interesting that not one of the four won the Calder Trophy in their freshman season, while RNH was the only one who even made the NHL all-rookie team in his freshman year.
But Edmonton now has $18 million of cap space tied up in Eberle, Hall and Nugent-Hopkins, and Yakupov, presumably, will make it $24 million tied up in four players.
from Terry Jones of the Edmonton Sun,
The Oilers dressing room is no longer a museum of the glory days of Stanley Cup champions and banner-raising teams. Gone are the pictures and plaques of the Cup winning teams, the names of all the players of all time and much more.
One of the first things Eakins did after he was hired, it seems, was call Ghostbusters. The new head coach has put the run on ghosts of Gretzky and the gang.
“Listen, when we walk in that door, there’s five Stanley Cups standing there,” he said of the featured showcase down the hall from the great signature Oiler-logo door, both of which remain.
“That’s a great piece of history. That’s the only thing that counts,” he continued.
“We have moved some pictures and some plaques and some things and we’re going to put them out for our fans to enjoy, but it’s important for these players that this is THEIR dressing room.
“Believe me, there is no disrespect. And this man would understand – this is not Mark Messier’s dressing room!
About Kukla's Korner Hockey
Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.
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