Friday, November 23, 2018

This And That

--Welcome to Friday and the usual thoughts running through my muddled mind. As always, they are in no particular order.

--The Montreal Alouettes of the NHL.  That is how someone referred to the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday when word broke of the Todd McLellan firing.  As much as that hurts being an Oilers fan, its accurate.

Todd McLellan's removal as head coach was somewhat surprising, but it was made moreso because the guy who should be walking the plank is still employed and that is GM Peter Chiarelli.  It is no secret he has been a disaster.  Let's recap

  • After getting Connor McDavid, Chiarelli traded Taylor Hall to New Jersey for Adam Larsson.  This deal had to be made because Hall had been the leader of the team and the new leader had shown up. However, the end result for Hall, who is the reigning MVP, wasn't even close to being enough.  The Oilers needed more for someone of Hall's ilk 
  • After a horrible playoffs, Jordan Eberle was traded to the Islanders for Ryan Strome. How did that work?
  • Milan Lucic was signed to a 7 year, 42 million dollar contract
  • He traded three draft picks to the Rangers for an unproven goaltender in Cam Talbot
  • He traded a first round pick for Griffin Reinhart.  That pick ended up being last year's rookie of the year Matt Barzal
This is Chiarelli's mess and not McLellan's.  Is Todd to blame for the fact Jesse Puljujarvi and Kailer Yamamoto saw their development stall?  That's a question I can't answer.  If one was to go, the other had to as well.  The fact Chiarelli remains makes me think that Ken Hitchcock or no Ken Hitchcock this team is not going to be a playoff team despite the fact we still have three-quarters of the season to go.  When that happens, Chiarelli then indeed should be gone.   I can only wonder what Connor McDavid says about this behind closed doors.  Let's hope he finds the right Uber driver in Arizona so that we can find out. 

--Dave Dickenson was fined this week for swearing.  Huh?  This is just another example of CFL buffoonery.  What head coach doesn't cuss a time or two on the sidelines.  Has Chris Jones ever been fined for this? How about Jason Maas? Did Kent Austin?  Did Wally Buono ever get fined for continuously wandering onto the field.  All Dickenson was guilty of was swearing with a camera nearby.  All coaches --OK, 95 percent of them---cuss and swear their hearts out.  We don't see them getting fined. 

Still with Dickenson, if the Stampeders lose on Sunday what do you do?  That will be three straight years Calgary will have gone to the dance and lost.  Will John Hufnagel stand for that?  There is already talk the Calgary dynasty will crumble if Bo Levi Mitchell heads to the NFL. I've bought into that narrative of Calgary not being as strong as they have the year previous and they just keep winning.  If the Stamps win, this conversation ends. If they don't, it will be a very uncomfortable December for Dickenson.   This just in, I don't think they win.  I am taking Ottawa to win this game.

--In the midst of watching the NFL Thanksgiving Day triple-header, I saw TSN2 was showing the 2013 Grey Cup.  It's an event that you just have to watch whenever it is on isn't it? Damn, Taylor Field looked great that day in what was maybe the old girl's shining moment. I think it is safe to say many members of Rider Nation remember every moment of that November night.  I don't know how many times I have watched that game, but I didn't realize until seeing it Thursday that Corey Chamblin got the gatorade shower with two minutes to go. That was a little early wasn't it?  It doesn't really matter though does it.

--Congrats to Chris Jones for being named the CFL Coach of The Year.  I don't think there was really any doubt.

--The CFLPA announced its all-star team Thursday.  How does Adam Bighill not make it amongst his peers?  That's a weird one. Is the Bombers linebacker not popular with his fellow players?  There has to be a reason.

--Week 12 NFL Lock of the Week -- Eagles over Giants
--Week 12 NFL Upset of The Week -- Browns over Bengals

--Monday's Chiefs-Rams game may have been the best football game I have ever seen. What didn't that game have? Big plays on both sides of the ball with the defense coming up huge for LA in the end.  10 TD passes were thrown in that game----the Riders threw 11 all season.  I think many are hoping for a repeat in the Super Bowl, but I think New Orleans will have something to say about that.  I don't think we have heard the last of the Patriots either.

--There is a long ways to go in the SJHL season, but one can't help notice the Humboldt Broncos have the most wins in the league.  How they are doing this considering what happened is simply amazing.  They had to basically throw a new team together under the worst of circumstances. If they could keep this up and win a league title, you could just start making the movie now.  You know a lot of people are pushing for them.

--If American Thanksgiving is the bellwether of who makes and who doesn't make the NHL playoffs, then there will be a different look to the dance this year.  Both the Penguins and Knights would be out, Buffalo would be in and so would Montreal.  Calgary would be back as well.

Last year at this time, you would have had Ottawa and Calgary in and that didn't happen.  They say 75 percent of the teams in a playoff spot now can start printing playoff tickets.  I guess we'll have to wait until April to see.  It is hard to think there are so many games to go, but we are talking about this. The numbers show there is a reason though.

--That's all I got.  Enjoy Grey Cup weekend and get that credit card out for Black Friday specials.


Anonymous said...

From what I have heard, McLellan and Chiarelli were at odds on several topics. One of them was the playing of young guys. He has to take some blame, but the GM has made more bad moves than good ones and the team is and will pay for it for a while.

Getting Wideman yesterday was interesting. I wonder if that is Hitchcock saying get me another experienced d-man or if the plan was there by Chiarelli the whole time.

Anonymous said...

Jones get coach of the year and his team is not in the Grey Cup. Jones beats out Rick Campbell to get the award. Campbell's team is in the Grey Cup and Jones' team isn't. Campbell's team could win the Grey Cup and Jones' team won't. Do I need to keep going?

Anonymous said...

If Bo leaves for the NFL, I see the Stamps crumbling. If Calgary loses this game, does Hufnagel admit the rebuild is on and say we need a new coach to start that rebuild. DD may be coaching for his job on Sunday.

That said, Dickenson will end up in BC and likely be back at the GC next year with Riley as his QB.

Anonymous said...

If Edmonton makes the playoffs, do you just make Hitchcock the coach and GM or do you start anew and find new guys for both.

Really stunned Hitchcock is back in the NHL. His best before date has long expired.

The Montreal Alouettes of the NHL is a very apt description as well.

Anonymous said...

That video of final 30 secs you have up on Twitter gives one goosebumps. What a night that was indeed!

Watched it sitting beside my dad and he was teary-eyed. He died in 2016 having seen them win a GC in a place where he had season tickets since the 60's.

Anonymous said...

If you going to constantly whine about Chiarelli and constantly bringing up the same few examples to take shots at him, take a look at the big picture of his work. First off look at the Oilers roster he inherited and look at the prospect pool and the years terrible drafts the Oilers had. How many home grown players are on the Oilers roster that are beyond their first round picks? What a disaster. Years of constant coaching changes, just a soft team that was easy to play against.

Look at the Bakersfield roster look who their top players are, some of their key players were drafted by Chiatelli. The Oilers are a team that needs to draft and develop their own players, anytime the Oilers are going to chase free agents it’s going to cost them more in years and salary to bring a player to Edmonton. The prospect pool and draft picks have been a signifcant improvement under Chiarelli. Unfortunately it may take a couple more years for some of these players to develop to be nhl ready but it’s a lot better then it was 3 years ago.

Team toughness has been addressed and the Oilers are not a pushover if you wanna get chippy. People love to complain about the Eberle trade, honestly what kind of trade value does a very one dimensional, small forward who has a 6 million dollar cap hit get you with eberles production? Chiarelli won any trade that involved him not retaining salary on Eberle, Oiler fans should not overate Eberle. Also that trade was about getting cap space down the road. The Hall trade looks bad, but his back end needed a significant improvement, look what was handed to him, unfortunately it costed him Hall but the oilers have improved since the trade and even though Larson is no Hall, it should not be overlooked what he has meant to the Oilers.

Would be nice if goaltending was better, but he got Talbot when Talbot was probably the best available goalie and the Oilers desperately needed an upgrade over whatever they had in 2014.

I know people bash the Lucic signing and yes would look better if he got 20 goals but once again if you wanna get a free agent to Edmonton it’s going to cost salary and term, and the Oilers needed a lucic type player and is it Chiarellis fault he never took off in Edmonton? That sounds to me more of a coach issue?? Pujarvi and Yamamoto development stalled?? They are 19 and 20 year olds, what do you expect? That is just a lame excuse to whine about The Oilers. Also no one brings up the contracts he signed mcdavid, kleefboom and drisatl to. Those contracts lock up the best player in the game for 8 prime years including some ufa years, kleefbooms contract looks like a steal and drisatl for 8.5 in a couple years will be a steal.
It’s a process, and fans need to be a bit more patient, this wasn’t going to be a quick fix, the 2017 playoff run raised expectations too fast and that’s been a problem too.

Anon number 9

Anonymous said...


"In Jones We Trust"

Anonymous said...

Scruffy, you should be ecstatic. It looks as if Chiarelli or his wife reads your blog. Well done!

Anonymous said...

No not Chiarelli’s wife or children just an Oilers fan who can sit back and enjoy the direction this team is going and not whine about Peter Chiarelli or Cam Talbot or Milan Lucic after every game like a broken record. If you wanna bash me at least come up with some points

Anon number 9

Anonymous said...

Look up Edmonton Oilers NHL franchise overall player draft history on Google and analyze, it's ATROCIOUS! The bad outweigh the good.

Anonymous said...

Patience? It's very obvious you don't know hockey and its inner workings. How many more #1 - high draft choices are the spOilers going to need? They had plenty of opportunity to develop far beyond where they sit today, shame on that! They should be sitting in the upper echelons of the NHL, what a waste and misdirection by that inept management to that franchise. Oiler the Cleveland Browns of the NHL. Enough said!


Anonymous said...

Anon #9 definitely taking advantage of marijuana being legal!