The ideal line up….

Posted: April 6, 2010 in Uncategorized

I have made comment on several occasions that the Oilers play their young with a trial by fire mentality.  Gagner, Cogliano rushed.  Constant fourth line merry-go-round with JF Jacques, Pouliot, Stone, Stortini, and on and on.  I make mention that the Red Wings will sign Todd Bertuzzi to play on their fourth line instead of having Abdelkader taking important minutes.

The Oilers have not done this in a long time.  They are trying so hard to get their youth into development at the NHL level that the lack of experience causes them to inevitably fail.

This season, they will pick top two and select a potential franchise player.   Even with all the selection criteria, who is best for the team, yadda yadda, I will go on record that I believe that Taylor Hall is the BPA.  I would select him.

So, what next.  This is a conundrum of epic proportions since the team has to reinvent itself, do you pull a Coyote and go for a big rebound year or do you take it on the chin one more time and hope for a Larsson or Couturier or Nugent-Hopkins?  Dreger said the Oilers want another top 10 pick for this draft as well.  Who know who might be gone from this team?  I won’t predict, but I will tell you what I would do.

1.  Buyouts/Traded.  These players would not be on my team next season.  Either trade for prospects/picks or bought out.  Sheldon Souray, Robert Nilsson, Patrick O’Sullivan, Ethan Moreau, Mike Comrie(Let go via FA).  Souray would like to be on a contender, Nilsson and O’Sullivan have no heart, Moreau is no longer a fit for this team, Comrie doesn’t give enough added value to keep around.  I could be convinced otherwise on Comrie depending on what happens in FA.

2.  Resigned.  Aaron Johnson at minimal raise, Fernando Pisani at a discount.  Ryan Potulny, Sam Gagner, Ryan Jones as well.

3.  Let walk. JF Jacques. Jason Strudwick.  Jeff Deslauriers.  Two of three not NHLers, and Strudwick is just not worthy of giving minutes to.

4. Unrestricted pick ups. Dominic Moore, Jay McKee, Nick Boynton

5. Make the team. Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle.

6. Playing in the minors.  Petry, Omark, Van de Velde, Stone(If he wants to play in the minors, if not let him go.)

So your forward ranks might look like this…

Hall Gagner Hemsky

Penner Brule Eberle

Jones Horcoff Cogliano

Stortini Potulny Pisani

Pouliot Moore

The blueline could be something like…

Whitney Gilbert

Smid Johnson

McKee Boynton

Peckham

Khabibulin/Dubnyk

Obviously much depends on what the UFA market will bring, but you get my idea.  Fill spots with Vets, not kids.  We will be much better off…unless we are going for first overall again…

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