Sunday, December 3, 2017

Veteran Log Jam

With the addition of Brandon Davidson, the Oilers now find themselves at 49 contracts. League max is set at 50 so there isn't much wiggle room there when it comes to making a trade. There already has been speculation that the Oil will look at doing a 2 for 1 trade to drop themselves back down to 48 total contracts. But, on the flip side of that, they currently can't make their own a 2 for 1 trade as that would put them at 51 contracts and that's not going to be accepted. 

One would think, a deal is on the way soon. Especially for another back up goalie. I think for a lot of people, that's the most pressing need the Oilers currently have. With Talbot as a question mark and Brossoit not exactly lighting up the ice with his play, finding a better backup should be on the to do list. Fully expect a deal to be done sooner rather than later. 


Ryan Holt from the Condors brought up a valid point yesterday. He happened to mention the Condors have a log jam with veteran players right now. 

The rule states as follows;

What is the AHL’s development rule?

In the AHL, player development is a top priority. The American Hockey League and the Professional Hockey Players’ Association have the following development rule in place:

Of the 18 skaters (not counting two goaltenders) that teams may dress for a game, at least 13 must be qualified as “development players.” Of those 13, 12 must have played in 260 or fewer professional games (including AHL, NHL and European elite leagues), and one must have played in 320 or fewer professional games. All calculations for development status are based on regular-season totals as of the start of the season.

Currently the Condors have Fayne, Stanton, Hamilton, Callahan, Malone and Pakarinen listed as vets. If the Oilers make any trades or assign anyone else down to Bakersfield, that AHL vet rule could become worse. As of right now, they have to sit one of those guys per game to abide by the rules. They send another listed vet down and they would have to sit two per game. 

It is a great rule to help keep the AHL as a development league, but can also bite you in the ass. Say, for example, injuries take out a few of the non vets and you are stuck. I would imagine they would have to sign a player or two to a PTO. Or, possibly call up some players from the Condors minor league team. Either way, Oilers need to really focus on who they sign moving forward as "dumping" a player to the AHL isn't just an easy dump. Paying people to not play isn't exactly smart money management. 

Written by Brent Huska

Friday, December 1, 2017

Kick In The Balls

All I could say watching the end of the Oilers and Leafs game was... "inaudible gasping sounds".

I couldn't believe my eyes watching the replay. Russell turned to hammer the stick of Kadri, but, unfortunately that stick wasn't there, but the puck was. Doh! 

I felt so bad for him. It wasn't intentional at all. Heat of the moment and he made the play he figured was correct. But, in that instant, it all came crashing down. I will give Russell huge props for not hiding from the media last night. He stood there and took the heat. That in itself, that's commendable.

The way I look at it, there is two scenarios on how this will play out. 

1) this will not only elevate his game moving forward, it will make him a more of a gamer. His team stuck behind him after the game and that, in my mind, just made the Oilers better. This is something that can really bring a team together. Perhaps it's the missing link that the Oilers have needed all year. A legit reason to play for each other and to have each other's backs. Last night could very well be the turning point of this oddly played season. 


2) this is the beginning of the end for Russell. For some, this could really mess a played head up. Some never get over mistakes like this and could forever scar him from returning to the form we have seen him play in the past. 

I'm personally thinking its option 1. However, we will see next game and how the Oilers and Russell play. Fingers crossed I'm correct with option 1. 


Side note;

Oilers have claimed left winger Nathan Walker this morning. Report say that Walker can play all three forward positions. He's not a big man, but he is a guy who gives it his all. I will think Oilers fans are going to like this guy. But, we shall see. 

Written by Brent Huska

Monday, November 27, 2017

Get Over It!

Seems like almost daily that the fans of the Edmonton Oilers break down about what could or should have been. Now, I don't know about you, but that type of thinking would wear me down a lot and I would become even more depressed than I already am. Why subject ourselves to what ifs? 

We can't change the past, no matter what. So, why are we dwelling on trades and transactions that are long and over with? I can see the appeal. You see something that's going well and you wish it to be happening here. But, if we rewind the clock, people were happy to ship Hall and Eberle out of town as two examples. 

It was a general consensus that Hall had ran his time down here. People laughed and made jokes about how upset and sour he was to leave here. Taylor Hall was the laughing stock of the Oilers on his exit out of Edmonton and still was up to the start of this season. 

Some, claimed he was a cancer in the dressing room and that's why he was traded. Some, claimed his style of play would have him injured for most of his NHL career as the Oilers were better off not having that style of player here. Some, just thought he was a puck hog. 

No matter what your thoughts were on Taylor Hall at that time, you fast forward to now and you'll find fans missing and craving his goal scoring in Edmonton. You'll find people wanting to turn back time and not make that deal. And now, the same could be said for Jordan Eberle. 

Eberle was a bum in the playoffs, they said. Eberle has no heart and doesn't compete like an Oiler should. Eberle was renamed Eberlazy. Once again, those fans fast forward to today and they don't understand why he was traded. 

I think at times General Manager Peter Chiarelli and his staff actually read too much into the hype the team gets from MSM, bloggers and the casual fan. I firmly believe that the Eberle deal was made to appease the fans and critics. In my mind, it made no sense to trade him at the time he did. It made no sense to give away the goals he produced. But, should have, would have, could have, he's gone now. We have to live with that and accept it. 

Same could be said about Pouliot. He was a bum too right Oiler fans? Yet, here we are, desperately needing his strengths of killing penalties. 

Hindsight is always 20/20, but at the end of the day, decisions get made and love them or hate them, they happened. 

It's time to let it go and get over it. I know I have. 

Written by Brent Huska

Did You Miss Me?

So, here we are. Enjoying the Oilers win on the weekend. Everyone is happy. The suicide hotline has open lines for the first time in a long time. Fans going to work on this fabulous Monday morning with not a worry in the world. But, how long can this last? 

I've always been an optimist when it comes to the Oilers. They are my team. They make me happy. But for some folks, it's not the same for them. We tend to get very emotionally charged for games and the happenings that surround the team. While I can fully understand that, I just don't let myself get sucked in that far. 

But, wait! I've been gone for 2 years. Surely I must have left cause of the negative energy surrounding the team, right? Actually, no. I had to stop writing due to real life changes. Life became busier and I just couldn't focus anymore on Oilers Jambalaya. It wasn't the team, the fans, or anything else. I just had no time at all. But that's changed. 

I'm in a better place in life where I can spend a few moments a day and reflect on the current state of the Edmonton Oilers. I've missed this blog and I've missed the readers. The dot com name expired and before I could renew it, someone bought the name and now wants $100 for it. So I decided on using dot ca now. Sucks, yes. But I'm not paying someone $100 for a name that is 100% useless to them. They can hold it for life. I really don't care. 

Which brings me to now. I'm back and it feels good. Ive decided to just roll with my real name instead of the alias Smokin' Ray Burnt like I had done in the past. Not sure why I used an alias when I started Oilers Jambalaya, but I did and always regretted it. So with the new start to this, I'm making the change and I feel better about it. 

Stick around and make sure to bookmark 

Written by Brent Huska

Sunday, November 26, 2017

Beers and Jeers - Oilers vs Bruins

Honestly, I liked the combos before the game started. Seemed like a real good shake up. At this point, you couldn't possibly be worse right? 

Too much stock gets put into line rankings. The best teams have always had 3 solid lines and a decent 4th line. Each line is important, so to get too involved on the 5 W's of questions and why people are on certain lines, it will drive you crazy. 

Bottom line is, if the so called "3rd line" is playing the best in a game, that line will get played a lot more and in the end, that's all we all really want. Competing lines that can go out and score. 


Ryan Strome scoring the 3rd goal

Beers - Connor McDavid finishing his check on the big Zdeno Chara, then not backing down from him all night long. Not many would try and get the best of the big man, but McDavid didn't waiver. Good on him. (2 assists in today's game)

Beers - Nugent-Hopkins constantly playing a solid game. He seems to do no wrong right now. Really liking every aspect about his game. 

Beers - Strome with a rocket of a shot. Nice feed from Draisaitl. Makes it 3-2 in the 2nd and ultimately it's the game winner. He looked great playing with Draisaitl. 

Beers - Talbot played strong at the end to keep the Bruins scoreless in the 3rd. Wouldn't say he stole the game for the Oilers, but he did keep them in it. Good to see from him today. Been long overdue. 

Beers - Leon Draisaitl was a force tonight. Used his speed and hands and walked away with a great game under his belt. He admitted he wasn't playing well and knew he needed a game like this. I had hoped he could turn it around and he did today. 

Honourable Mentions - Cammalleri played pretty well. One must imagine he's still trying to adjust to the team as you see him floating into spots that the other guys would normally take. But all in all, he notched an assist and looked OK with McDavid and Lucic. 

Speaking of Lucic, he had 6 hits tonight. That's an eventful night for the large fella. He still needs to work on some minor things to get his own game moving, but if he can bomb out 6 hits a night, it will go a long way to helping this team get better. 

Written by Brent Huska 

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