Saturday, July 16, 2011

Assessing Sutton

If you stare at something long enough, you can talk yourself into damn near anything. Or out of anything. On July 1, when Steve Tambellini was busy changing the look of the team with free agents Cam Barker, Ben Eager, Eric Belanger and Darcy Hordichuk, he also dropped in a one-for-one trade that sent away Kurtis Foster and brought in Andy Sutton.

My initial impression of Sutton was that he would serve the Jim Vandermeer-Jason Strudwick role, a veteran third pairing defender with the added value of being an enforcer and a tall tree on the blue. Penalty-killing appeared to be a useful area for his game, too.

A few comments on this blog have suggested Sutton is more than that, a solid 2nd pairing veteran with a wide enough range of skills to be considered the 3rd or 4th most valuable player in the current group. Let's have a look.
  • 2010-11 5x5 QualComp: Safely in the third pairing, trailing three veterans who are clearly better players (Lubo, Lydman and Beauchemin) and the rookie Fowler.
  • 2010-11 5x5 QualTeam: Third pairing, in fact he's down there with the fringe guys. Sutton played only half a season so these numbers could be skewed but it's pretty clear the Ducks coaching staff had a preference for others during the important moments.
  • 2010-11 5x5 CorsiRel: Fifth on the team, which is not a good number considering he's a veteran playing softer opponents.
  • 2010-11 Zone Start & Finish: This is a really interesting look at the Ducks. The zone start numbers show Sutton getting the easiest ride along with youngsters Sbisa and Fowler plus the fringe man Brookbank. The guys getting the toughest sledding by zone start are exactly the people Anaheim relied on all year. Andy Sutton isn't one of them. His zone finish is a full 8 percentage points below the zone start.  
  • 2010-11 5x5 TOI: Well down the depth chart. At even strength the Ducks top 4D were Lubo, Beauchemin, Fowler and Lydman. This was a playoff team, and Sutton was a veteran option but the Ducks went with a rookie (Fowler) and another young player (Sbisa) in stronger roles.
  • 2010-11 4x5 TOI: Sutton was used as a PK option, and would appear to be a candidate for that kind of role on the Oilers this season.
Based on last season, Edmonton is looking at a third pairing veteran who can penalty kill and serve an enforcer role. Agreed? His 09-10 season was spent with the Islanders and then Ottawa (valuable enough to be worth a 2nd rder at the deadline) so the Desjardins numbers are shared over the two teams. I would say that he appeared to be a 2nd pairing defender during that season.

Conclusions? I think he's a third pairing guy. Sutton will play more minutes with the game on the line than he did a year ago because the Oilers don't have Lubo, Beauchemin and Lydman.

Last season, the Oilers leaders in QualComp at 5x5 were Gilbert, Peckham, Whitney and Smid. The leaders in 5x5 CorsiRel were Gilbert, Vandermeer, Smid and Foster. The leaders in 5x5 TOI were Gilbert, Whitney, Petry and Smid. The toughest zone starts at 5x5 were Peckham, Smid, Petry and Vandermeer.

Based on those numbers, the strongest candidate to joing Gilbert, Whitney and Smid in the top 4? Theo Peckham.
--

Nation Radio hits the air at Noon today Edmonton time on Team 1260. Guests scheduled to appear include:
  • Tyler Dellow from MC79 Hockey.  We'll discuss the Arena debate, Steve Tambellini's summer and possible outcomes of the Ryan Smyth trade.
  • David Staples from Cult of Hockey at the Edmonton Journal. I'll ask David about several articles he's written recently, including Arena updates, Nikolai Khabibulin and Andrew Cogliano.
  • Bob Stauffer from across the universe. I'm interested in Bob's take on the Ryan Smyth trade and possible outcomes, the Hemsky to the Jackets discussions that broke this week and we'll argue over line combinations (only in Edmonton can you find people willing to spend part of their Saturday mulling the top 12F's on the Oilers).
  • Jonathan Willis from The Score, the Nation Network, Hockey Prospectus, ESPN Insider and God knows what he's added this week. I'm mostly interested in discussing his outstanding article in Hockey Prospectus a month ago about how to fix the Oilers bottom six. We'll talk about how Steve Tambellini addressed these issues and then spend some time on the Cogliano deal.
I'm not sure the order for these guests (my producer Connor--who is excellent, they didn't have producers when I was on air in my 20's and 30's; maybe they just want to help the old guy a little--usually waits until just before the show starts because there is often shuffling the morning of the broadcast) and would very much like your input into the show. So when you get a chance please drop an email to nationradio@theteam1260.com and I'll ask as many as I can given our time limitations.

98 comments:

  1. Sutton will play more minutes with the game on the line than he did a year ago

    Here we go again.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Didn't Sutton take out Hemsky, Horcoff, and Jacques all in one game?

    Vigneault will be more wary sending out the "sisters" against the Oilers 4th line and 3rd defensive pairing if Sutton and Eager are on the 3rd pairing and 4th line.

    ReplyDelete
  3. You mean the Oilers are hoping for an aging player to play to a level that they haven't done successfully for at least a year?

    The hell you say!

    Well, at least he doesn't have 4 years on a +35 contract.

    I actually think that Sutton won't be asked to play higher than 3rd pairing. It will be Peckham,Petry or Barker asked to do that.

    Are David and Tyler going to have any airtime where they are on together?

    While they have opposing views, they both seem like gentlemen and would keep the epitaths to a minimuim.

    Probably.

    ReplyDelete
  4. Didn't Sutton take out Hemsky, Horcoff, and Jacques all in one game?

    Nope, that was Paul Bunyan.

    Vigneault will be more wary sending out the "sisters" against the Oilers 4th line and 3rd defensive pairing if Sutton and Eager are on the 3rd pairing and 4th line.

    You cannot be this naive. People on this site seem to have a very low opinion of the courage of hockey players. I can say this for certain - a player like Hemsky is afraid of no man on the ice. I'm not sure the Sedins are cut from exactly the same cloth, but I don't think they're pussies either and I don't think Hemsky's makeup is a rare thing in the NHL. If Sutton and Eager ice the puck for a d-zone face-off, the Sedins will be out there to eviscerate them.

    Assuming the game is still in doubt, which is a big assumption these days.

    Saturday, July 16, 2011 7:52:00 AM MDT

    ReplyDelete
  5. You could ask that snake Staples to elaborate on several things in his "Stelmach Should" piece.

    For instance, its one thing for Stauffer to be shilling for the new arena, but should an employee of Postmedia being doing same?

    Or, at what point did "they got one, we want one" become a legitimate argument for anyone other than 7-year-olds?

    Ask him if there are any differences, other than funding, between the Edmonton Coliseum and the proposed Katz Pleasure Palace. Size, Cost, Revenue Streams...

    WTF does this mean:
    "As for Daryl Katz, he’s getting no easy ride. He’s investing $225 million through a direct $100 million investment and a $125 million ticket tax on Oilers fans and concert goers."
    Daryl is investing concert-goers money?

    I could go on and on, and ususally do, but does he think newspapers have become obscure and elitist enough that I should cancel my subscription to the Journal?

    ReplyDelete
  6. Was at the Hip show in Edmonton on Thursday. Stood about 2 feet in front (and upwind) of Stauffer. You should ask him if he felt a sudden onset of munchies shortly before Bobcaygeon ;)

    Looking forward to the show as always, but this is my kind of line-up. If Dellow's segment is before Staples', I've got 5 bucks that says Mudcrutch will be calling back in to hardball him on the arena.

    ReplyDelete
  7. //You cannot be this naive. People on this site seem to have a very low opinion of the courage of hockey players. I can say this for certain - a player like Hemsky is afraid of no man on the ice. I'm not sure the Sedins are cut from exactly the same cloth, but I don't think they're pussies either and I don't think Hemsky's makeup is a rare thing in the NHL.//

    It is nothing to do with the courage of the Sedins or Hemsky or the player. It is about how much injury risk their coach is willing to take.

    Hemsky not being afraid of Regehr did not mean his shoulders were not going to break from a Regehr borderline hit.

    ReplyDelete
  8. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  9. Hopefully the Oilers can flip Sutton into a 2nd or third round pick at the deadline. I am sure Calgary will need another Dman :-)

    ReplyDelete
  10. These numbers indicate the Ducks wanted to go with their youth & they did, much like the Oilers will this year. I think this is why Sutton was put in those situations for zone starts etc., I doubt very much it's because they didn't have faith in Sutton. Also, I think joining Whitney & Gilbert in the top four will be Barker & Petry with Peckham having an outside chance & that might only be because the coaches want Petry to play with Sutton on the third pairing. No way Smid makes the top 4.

    ReplyDelete
  11. Well said LT. The numbers clearly show that Sutton is a 3rd pairing d-man, and that's fine. If he can handle that role better than Foster did, so be it.

    Had a chance to see Sutton pretty extensively in the playoff series with Nashville and was fairly under-whelmed by him, but that was why he was a 3rd pairing d-man for them. To expect more would be expecting much too much.

    I think a lot of the concern about the off-season is in the Barker signing. If we'd gone out and signed a legit 2nd pairing d-man to go with a Whitney (injury prone) a Gilbert (fan favorite) and the others, we'd be feeling better about the blue than we are right now.

    ReplyDelete
  12. WG: As I mentioned yesterday, there are practical reasons for not having Tyler and David on at the same time. Not avoidance, but in the interests of quality both interviews will be one on one with me.

    ReplyDelete
  13. The Arena District is a public private partnership with shared revenues and shared risk. It all depends about the negotiation, and the fair allocation of revenues and risk between the parties.

    Whether it is a good deal or a bad deal depends entirely on the details of the deal.

    It is NOT about subsidizing anyone.

    From the city's point of view, it is about spending $200-$325 million to leverage up to $1 billion dollars of private investment in an underutilized wasteland of a downtown that currently isn't generating much tax revenue.

    The nuts-and-bolts are in the details. Until one sees the deal, if there is a final deal, one cannot say whether it is good or bad. And no billion dollar deal is without risk.

    If one is asking for a risk free deal, there won't be one. Even doing nothing comes with risk, because Katz will go build the arena in Strathcona County, likely with a large retail component to the suburban district which will drain revenue and economy activity away from Edmonton malls and restaurants and hotels.

    Odds are Tyler gets back on the silly hobby horse of "subsidies". Look at all the public money (federal tax dollars included) that is going into renovating Union Station to which the Air Canada Centre is attached. Montreal and Toronto also have a port authority which receive multimillions of dollars every year to put into the downtown of Montreal and Toronto. Ottawa has the National Capital Commission for federal dollars to pour into the city.

    Central Canadians are just much more sophiscated in how they hide the federal and provincial dollars that the downtowns of their cities receive for public private partnerships.

    Will Tyler talk about all the federal dollars that went towards subsidizing a swanky new headquarters for the Toronto International Film Festival. Federal dollars to subsidize American movie stars and Hollywood.

    Tyler won't talk about that.

    ReplyDelete
  14. No way Smid makes the top 4.

    That is the opposite of what v3.1 said when interviewed after Smid's extension.

    LT,

    TWO MEN ENTER, ONE MAN LEAVES!


    TWO MEN ENTER, ONE MAN LEAVES!


    TWO MEN ENTER, ONE MAN LEAVES!


    TWO MEN ENTER, ONE MAN LEAVES!

    haha!

    I look forward to the show today.

    ReplyDelete
  15. If one is asking for a risk free deal, there won't be one.

    Well Katz is asking for all the revenue without guaranteeing any shortfall in projected income streams for the city, so he's looking for a risk free deal.

    ReplyDelete
  16. WG: lol. Both are well spoken gentlemen, I expect a strong argument filled with logic and good sense from both of them.

    ReplyDelete
  17. WG: lol. Both are well spoken gentlemen, I expect a strong argument filled with logic and good sense from both of them.

    Well then, Staples will disappoint.

    Now godot10 is trying to obfuscate the issues with some unrelated subsidy elsewhere in the country.

    The sad thing is that kind of strategy does work on stupid people.

    ReplyDelete
  18. RiversQ: I think you sell David Staples short. He is a well spoken individual who delivers solid information and thought provoking articles imo.

    I feel the same way about Dellow. Those who expect him to rip on Staples sell him short as well. I expect Tyler will deliver his viewpoint on the issue and perhaps offer some ideas about the solution that are worth pondering.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Lowetide said...
    RiversQ: I think you sell David Staples short. He is a well spoken individual who delivers solid information and though provoking articles imo.


    I'm familiar with his tripe as it relates to hockey or the arena. He's a poor quality guest IMO. But I don't imagine guests are chosen on the merits of their ideas, they're chosen based on who will draw listeners.

    I feel the same way about Dellow. Those who expect him to rip on Staples sell him short as well. I expect Tyler will deliver his viewpoint on the issue and perhaps offer some ideas about the solution that are worth pondering.

    He doesn't need to rip Staples. The facts will be enough.

    ReplyDelete
  20. RQ,

    Do you ever wake up on the right side of the bed?

    Do you walk around scowling and kicking puppies?

    Seriously, I get your arguments, but you are so full of venom they turn your arguments into noise.

    So if you had a radio show you would only present one view point? Only one type of guest? Only guests you agree with? That would be very boring and resemble Fox News in terms of having "one narrative"

    ReplyDelete
  21. CBC radio is also very good at presenting one point of view.

    Gotta take shots at both sides of the political spectrum.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Didn't Sutton take out Hemsky, Horcoff, and Jacques all in one game?

    Nope, that was Paul Bunyan.


    Yeah, I remember that game during the '09/'10 season against the Islanders. Sutton softened up Hemsky's labrum, injured Horcov's shoulder, then Jacques hurt his back fighting him later in the game.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Jwsus, now I think I ahould go prepare.

    Godot - I'm not a partisan talking point hack like you are. Qhen I object to things, it's on principle. If you woukd refrain from assuming that I have your low level of integrity when arguing a point, it'd be appreciated.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Jay: Add to that, Jacques was also answering the bell for Andy Sutton hitting Gilbert on that shift (big, clean hit). I didn't remember that, but I dug around and found the fight video.

    From my notes on the game, I see "Sutton drilled Horcoff"... "Sutton hit Hemsky 3 times in the same shift near the end of the period"... and "Gilbert just barely catches Andy Sutton coming at him to level him and goes low as Sutton comes up high at him. This draws attention from Jacques who drops them with Sutton"

    NYI vs. Edmonton Oilers on November 2, 2009. Talk about a good game for Sutton.

    ReplyDelete
  25. BTW, I'm skeptical that this version of Sutton will come out every night and play for the Oilers, but I look forward to seeing that time to time and closing my eyes during the parts where he looks like a pylon on the ice. :P

    ReplyDelete
  26. Woodguy said...
    RQ,

    Do you ever wake up on the right side of the bed?


    Stage right?

    Do you walk around scowling and kicking puppies?

    No.

    Seriously, I get your arguments, but you are so full of venom they turn your arguments into noise.

    Ok, that's your opinion.

    So if you had a radio show you would only present one view point? Only one type of guest? Only guests you agree with? That would be very boring and resemble Fox News in terms of having "one narrative"

    Now that is ridiculous. If I had a radio show I would present opposing points of view. I'm going to leave it there.

    ReplyDelete
  27. Nice lineup for the radio gig today LT. I'm hoping this will be first one I can catch live.

    In reading some of the comments here this morning, it's interesting to see the apparent street cred that cynicism gives one in the blogosphere. Dellow has obviously soured on management to the point where you wonder if he's only following the team for the opportunity to skewer the lads in the ivory tower? His site recently offered an opportunity to participate in the '2nd annual Oilers are the worst team in hockey chat.' Hm, unbridled pessimism and the death of hope. Where do I sign up?

    On the other hand, Staples tempers his analysis with some optimism and is thus perceived as a lightweight at best if not seriously misinformed. Tough crowd.

    In the middle lives Bob Stauffer. His vitriol towards Sather when he wrote for the free sports circular (sorry can't remember the name) was legendary, so much so that the Oilers obviously decided, "if you can't beat him, hire him!" lol It may be a muzzle, but one assumes it's a muzzle with a decent benefits package.

    Some potential questions that I would find interesting to each or any of your guests today: "How much of your analysis, if anything, is based on your personal experiences playing the game of hockey?" AND "What do YOU do starting today if you are sitting in the GM chair?"

    The latter question is particularly interesting to me because it speaks to whether these gentemen are simply very effective critics of actions taken after the fact OR do they truly have a vision of a better way forward for this hockey club?

    ReplyDelete
  28. NYI vs. Edmonton Oilers on November 2, 2009. Talk about a good game for Sutton.

    Funny, he ended up -1 in a 3-1 win anyway. Gave up a GA to Moreau with Stortini on the ice.

    ReplyDelete
  29. His site recently offered an opportunity to participate in the '2nd annual Oilers are the worst team in hockey chat.' Hm, unbridled pessimism and the death of hope. Where do I sign up?

    I'm confused. I had a chat for the draft the year before when the Oilers finished last in the league. They finished last a second year running and it was the second annual such chat.

    How am I not accurately describing the situation?

    ReplyDelete
  30. Now that is ridiculous. If I had a radio show I would present opposing points of view. I'm going to leave it there.

    Re-reading your post, you are right, you just dismissed Staples, and not his viewpoint necessarily.

    Perhaps I was so distracted by the personal shot in your post, that I missed the point... :)

    ReplyDelete
  31. Further to my previous post, Pat of BDHS remains one of my personal faves in the blogosphere. Like most I'm sure, it starts with an absolute winning combination of lyrical writing married to great guy's humour, BUT I also appreciate the fact that I'm reading the opinions of a guy who actually plays the game and allows that experience to inform his analysis. I think that counts for something and is often underrated in this little corner of the web we call the Oilogosphere.

    It is a shame that the Gretzky's, Jordan's and Montana's of this world don't blog. Oh, the stories they could tell us.

    ReplyDelete
  32. @Lee - if it assuages any concern you might have, I've played on a team with Pat.

    ReplyDelete
  33. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  34. How am I not accurately describing the situation?

    I'm not saying it's inaccurate Tyler, but isn't your response here the classic response of the cynic? I.E. I'm not a cynic, I'm a realist.

    In short, do you have even a sliver of hope at this point that this team will win another Stanley Cup in the future? If not, following them seems exceedingly futile. But given your very entertaining article on your Blackpool sojourn, maybe I'm misrepresenting you here today? Quite possibly you're more masochist than outright cynic?

    ReplyDelete
  35. You mean the Oilers are hoping for an aging player to play to a level that they haven't done successfully for at least a year?

    I would think that was mockery! but I know your smart enough to know three of the guys listed in lt's top 4 have never shown tough comp RD.

    The only thing more insain than asking soemone to play something they have not played for a year because of injury or age, is to ask someone to do something they show no chance of being able to do.

    Now that would be silly

    ReplyDelete
  36. @Lee - if it assuages any concern you might have, I've played on a team with Pat.

    Sounds fun and btw 'concern' might be a little strong for my thoughts on this sort of thing. The Oilers ARE entertainment at the end of the day, so I try not to take this stuff too seriously. I DO enjoy your opinions as I do the opinions of all of the chaps on LT's show today. It's all good.

    Have fun on the show. I'm looking forward to the listen.

    Btw, thanks for turning me onto some fairly niche Canadian recording artists. There's some good stuff there.

    ReplyDelete
  37. LT - I'll be pretty dissapointed if you don't ask Stauffer about his Bikini Girl alter ego. Especially since Staples is on and he did the online poll.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Ribs: Holy crap. It's the first question!

    ReplyDelete
  39. It was a blast. Pat's a great guy, as you intuited.

    In short, do you have even a sliver of hope at this point that this team will win another Stanley Cup in the future? If not, following them seems exceedingly futile. But given your very entertaining article on your Blackpool sojourn, maybe I'm misrepresenting you here today? Quite possibly you're more masochist than outright cynic?

    I think I'm a realist, realism leads me to by cynical most of the time when it comes to the Oilers but I'd much prefer to be genuinely optimistic about their chances.

    My bog standard defence to the cynicism charge is to tell people to go and read my posts from about game 70 to game 80 of 2005-06 when it looked like the Oilers were going to blow it and miss the playoffs. I was far more optimistic than virtually any Oilers fan that you'll find on the internet. I did a thing with CBC that spring for the playoffs too and said before the Wings series that I thought there was an argument that they were the second best team in the West.

    I'm prepared to be optimistic about this team when they do things that warrant it. They haven't done much to warrant it over the past five years. My archives are all there. People can go back and decide for themselves whether I was right to be pessimistic about their moves as they were made.

    As far as a sliver of a chance that they win the Cup - yeah, I think there's a decent shot that they do. I'd feel a hell of a lot more optimistic if the software running the Oilers' space shuttle wasn't the worst stuff on the market. How confident are you that Tambo and Lowe won't find some way to fuck things up based on what you've seen over the past five years?

    ReplyDelete
  40. TreenasOil Tracy Lane
    Nabakov has said in the past he wont come to EDM
    17 seconds ago

    TreenasOil Tracy Lane
    Islanders have offered Nabakov and a 3rd rd for Hartikainen and Khabibulin.
    47 seconds ago

    ReplyDelete
  41. If the Islanders want Hartikainen, they should be forced to give us a serious ransom. The guy is a hell of a hockey player who plays a truly exceptional and useful style of game.

    ReplyDelete
  42. I understand the passions (but not the vitriol) surrounding the arena district. While in the hospital for a bit of an extended stay this spring I had a couple of roommates quite bitter about the possible funding structure and couldn't see the potential benefits.

    If more people could make it to a district like the Staples Center, it might lighten their somewhat hardened hearts.

    However, why was this not an issue during the civic election? Where was the outrage as expressed on this site and others? The politicians certainly did not try to elbow each other out of the way to bring this front and center.

    Just shows me that they knew then that the downtown arena district is a done deal and is great for the city.

    They just saved their anti-arena posturing until after the election.

    ReplyDelete
  43. Bah, I don't understand all of the crying over peanuts. The arena is not expensive in the scheme of things - a few bucks per resident per year. Just build it already and throw another $100,000,000 into it to ensure it is an outstanding development.

    We can't rely upon the buildings and roads that our grandparents built and paid for forever, at some point our generation has to build something.

    The fear of a few $$ of tax money, the bulk of it which is returned to the local economy, baffles me. Really, if you can't afford it, maybe you need to get a better job.

    ReplyDelete
  44. Islanders have offered Nabakov and a 3rd rd for Hartikainen and Khabibulin

    As much as it would be good to get rid of Khabby, that's an absolute fire sale on Hartikainen and a waste. I'd guess that v3.1 just laughed at that one (if it actually occured)

    Even though the Oilers didn't get an average NHL goalie in FA, they aren't tough to get if you want one.

    I don't recommend all these guys, but here are your goalie UFA's for summer 2012:

    Huet (haha no)
    Brodeur (probably retire, if not back with NJD)
    Roloson - Methuselah's older brother
    Rinne
    Niittymaki
    Mason, Chris
    Leighton
    Ellis
    Vokoun
    Gustavsson
    Hedberg
    Clemmensen
    Auld
    Biron
    Backlund
    Harding
    Danis
    Raycroft
    McElhinney
    Montoya
    Ellitt
    Johnson (I'd target him, better SV% than Fleury last season)
    Sanford
    Nabokov

    There will be a goalie to be had if the Oilers want one.

    ReplyDelete
  45. Lee.

    I can confirm Stauffer has played a fair chunk of hockey in his life. Back in the 90s I believe he was playing on the same men's team as ex Notre Dame Hound Johnny Sexsmith. Sexsmith was a big help to him early in his career.

    ReplyDelete
  46. @LMHF

    Getting the Islanders to take Khabiulin is pretty much the definition of a "serious ransom".

    The Islanders are currently about $9M under the cap floor so you can understand why they would take his contract.

    I would guess Nabokov is still refusing to play for the Isles so it's basically:

    Khabibuin and Hartikainen for a third and the rights to Nabokov.

    Nabokov might not want to play in Edmonton either but a big overpay on a one year deal might convince him

    ReplyDelete
  47. RQ,

    I have to agree with WG. I quite often like your points but they frequently expressed with a level of bitterness or venom, something, that seems out of proportion and it has been that way since OilFans days. You sometimes say you're joking afterwards, but I don't think that's evident in the original post.

    ReplyDelete
  48. Tracy Lane
    TreenasOil Tracy Lane
    Islanders really want Hartikainen I don't think this is the last offer from them.
    24 minutes ago

    ReplyDelete
  49. If the Oilers were to trade Hartikainen I would be very seriously pissed.

    How fucking long have we tried to grow a top-9 calibre power forward? Not saying Teemu is all the way there yet, but he's more promising to my eye than generations of Winchesters and JFJs.

    ReplyDelete
  50. Nabokov might not want to play in Edmonton either but a big overpay on a one year deal might convince him

    Not at the cost of Harski.

    The Oilers haven't had a player like him since Rosie was shipped out.

    ReplyDelete
  51. How confident are you that Tambo and Lowe won't find some way to fuck things up based on what you've seen over the past five years?

    Well it's in our human blueprint to make mistakes, so the confidence fluctuates. But, and I think it's a big BUT, I am encouraged by what I perceive as numerous signs or organizational progress on multiple fronts. OKC is heading in the right direction and management seems to have successfully completed the 12 steps required to stop chasing whales.

    Further, I would hope we agree that Lowe had a different mandate under the EIG and unlike some conspiracy theorists, I do think his direct influence on personnel decisions has been mitigated. Certainly, I suspect he has a voice in the conversation but I'm very doubtful he has a veto.

    There is some material in the public domain to support the notion that Tambellini was a prime mover in the buildout of the Canucks' development system. For me, there is a very big acid test coming in terms of the decision on Nugent-Hopkins. One of the inherent flaws IMO of Oilers org past was their wont to fast-track their prospects through the process. Based on his slight size alone, I am strongly of the opinion that RNH needs to go back to junior this year. If he doesn't, that will be a warning flag for me that this org still doesn't get it in some fundamental areas of player development.

    Is there problems? Yes. You banged the drum first on the Khabibulin contract and your performance there was positively Bonham-esque, but the team's performance after that signing seems to be very much the wakeup call that shook the club's management out of its entropy and started them on this new path. Pro scouting remains a worry. The dithering on contracts and seeming unwillingness to dump players long after their best buy date are worrisome as well.

    But, I find an ironic aspect of the aging process for me anyway, is an eventual gravitation from cynicism towards optimism as a life choice that offers more upside. It bothers me when the tenor of the conversation on the blogosphere extends into this belief that every facet of the Oiler organization is incompetent. I've read the bios on the site and I don't buy it. There's some highly capable people trying to improve this situation and I think they will. The first up to enjoy some vindication will be the team's medical staff on the Lombardi story I'm guessing.

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  52. I really want to see Khabibulin go, but I would be pissed if they threw away a good prospect just to correct a previous f--- up.

    Khabi must go, but that is not the way to do it.

    Plus, Nabokov has no interest in playing with a bottom feeder.

    ReplyDelete
  53. @Spoiler. Thanks for the info on Stauffer. I've kind of assumed that most of these guys have played, but was keen to confirm. Definitely Pat wears it on his sleeve and that's what I'm talking about in terms of his actively acknowledging that influence on his analysis. Stauffer probably HAS to distance himself from that so as not to appear the fanboy.

    ReplyDelete
  54. mc79:

    You and many people just refuse to look at the Arena District as a business deal, where the risks and benefits depend on the details of the deal.

    GM (Oshawa, essentially Toront) and Chrysler received several billion dollars in federal bailout money.

    Toyota (Cambridge, essentially Toronto)just received $300 million (half from the feds, have from Ontario) for a $1 billion dollar auto in Souther Ontario, upping the "going" rate of blackmail from the auto industry from 20% to 30%.

    Ford is looking for similar dollars to refurbish Oakville plant (essentially Toronto).

    Toronto gets $1 billion per year from the Feds for the CBC.

    The trouble with the people screaming subsidy, subsidy, subsidy, is they are just making it harder for Mandel and Stelmach and Harper to find a way to add a provincial and a federal share by funding something "else".

    And if the House Republicans provoke another global economic crisis in a couple of weeks by forcing the US government into default, all those construction jobs for the new arena are going to look pretty good.

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  55. I don't think the feds should piss money into private enterprise even if it's Ontario.

    Way to catch me out.

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  56. Godot

    I have been biting my tongue as I read you parrot various theories with marginal comprehension as to what issues were involved.

    If you do not understand the economic reasons behind the Canadian government "investing" in the auto industry, quit beeking off. Just stop! It is about taking steps to save jobs and the associated tax revenue attached to those jobs. Not your job but multiple cities in Ontario and Quebec where entire communities would be laid off and be faced with catastrophic consequences. Astonishingly, today it looks like a pretty good investment.

    I did not read about your similar outrage at the Canadian government changing Canadian tax law to ensure that companies investing in the Oilsands got early favorable write offs to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. Wonder if that decision which generated thousands and thousands of jobs in Alberta and elsewhere across Canada was criticized by you? That decision, too, is looking like a very very VERY good investment by the Canadian government today.

    The Canadian government did the same thing investing in Hibernia and that decision has helped make Newfoundland into a "have" province. Another good investment.

    Toronto gets the CBC....Edmonton "got" the Edmonton garrison and I am delighted we did. In fact, I think we got the better part of that bargain.

    Not that any of the arguments you raised have anything to do with government building and GIVING an arena to a private businessman who contributes 20% of cost and gets 95% of the benefit.

    So if an investment of my tax dollars can save entire communities in Ontario/Quebec/Newfoundland from losing their jobs, their homes, their pensions, etc. I am prepared to make that investment. I would also hope other Canadians would the same for Alberta if something calamitous occurred here

    Seriously quit with examples of the Canadian government making investments that are very carefully made with the best interests of Canada at heart and comparing that with a freaking arena in Edmonton

    PS if you want a really bad example ...go with the Quebec sponsorship scandal which was outrageous pork barreling by the Liberals in Quebec. But the Liberals got thrown out of government for that outrageous conduct. Still not an argument for government $$ for an arena

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  57. Tracy Lane
    TreenasOil Tracy Lane
    Oilers have offered Gagner and Petry for Bogasian Jets are considering the offer as per Garfield
    9 minutes ago

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  58. "Oilers have offered Gagner and Petry for Bogasian Jets are considering the offer as per Garfield"


    Now that's a deal I'd pull the trigger on. I kinda figured that deal would have been pulled back in March.

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  59. I Bogosian reaches his first pairing potential, that's rebuild through the draft pretty much over.

    The Jets are weak down the middle and pretty strong on the blue so that deal makes sense for them too.

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  60. When the woman in her underpants includes the lasagna eating feline in her posts,we should take notice.

    I'd love to get Bogo,but I'd hate to give up Petry.

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  61. Actually, now that I think about it, Bogosian is a player that would be the ripest for an RFA offer. Winnipeg is already paying a shit ton for its D and would have a breaking point where they would have to walk away from him. So him being finally on the market would make sense.

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  62. Gagner for Bogosian is fair value. Not sure why Petry is being added in there.

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  63. The Other John

    I am not the person who is complaining about government investments in joint ventures with private business.

    The arena district is really no different than an investment in a Chrysler plant in Windsor. The arena district will create a whole bunch of temporary construction jobs, and a bunch of permanent jobs in what was an economically depressed region of Edmonton.

    A few hundred million dollars of public money to leverage at minimum of $200 million up to $1 billion dollars of private investment.

    The terms and the ratios are very similar for the ratio of public to private money that is being given for new auto plant investment in Ontario. And federal dollars (your dollars) are going to that.

    The northern and eastern edges of downtown Edmonton are as depressed as Windsor. I don't see why they are not deserving of federal dollars.

    Oshawa, where GM got money, Cambridge, where Toyota got money, and Oakville, where Ford is going to ask for money are NOT depressed areas. Oshawa and Oakville probably are wealtheir than Sherwood Park and St. Albert.

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  64. Accelerated capital writeoffs for the oilsands shifts government revenue from the present to the future.

    The oilsands companies were still going to be able to write off those costs like any other business. The accelerated writeoffs just alters the risk profile of investing multibillion in an oilsands project.

    Writing them off quicker just means they will have lower costs and higher profits int he future. The government is just deferring taxes to the future.

    This is quite different than the outright grants that are given to the automobile companies.

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  65. The Other John,

    Toronto, Montreal, and Ottawa have special purpose entities, the Toronto Port Authority, the Montreal Port Authority, and the National Capital Commission for funnelling federal dollar into what now are mostly private real estate projects in those three cities.

    Toronto's portlands are now just an ongoing real estate project, since almost all of the heavy port industry is long gone.

    It means federal and provincial dollars can be funnelled to real estate development with the high profile that the arena district is attracting in Edmonton and Quebec City.

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  66. When Rob and Doug Ford talk about building an NFL stadium on the Toronto portl lands, they will be expecting a big cheque from the federal government funnelled through the Toronto Port Authority under things like soil remediation and land reclamation costs.

    Edmonton and Calgary and Quebec City just don't have this quasi-public authority for obtaining federal funds for real estate in their cities.

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  67. Not all gov't spending is equal.

    Mc79 and others have said all along that the specific act of public spending on a new arena in Edmonton is stupid. I don't think they have objected on philosophical grounds to all gov't subsidies. (or at least they haven't relied on that objection.)

    These are the relevant issues to be debated:

    1. Katz can pay on his own, especially if the arena revenue is worthwhile.

    2. The new arena will bring only minor benefits to the downtown, probably offset by losses to other restaurants and bats.

    3. The benefits referred to in 2. Could be bought for less elsewhere.

    4. If Katz doesn't get subsidized, he'll leave.

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  68. godot said:

    "Edmonton and Calgary and Quebec City just don't have this quasi-public authority for obtaining federal funds for real estate in their cities."

    Sure they do. The Feds and Province has been funneling millions to Northlands and the Stampede Board for years.

    They have each been subsidized to the tune of $240 million by the province over the last ten years to keep horse racing going.

    And both have received innumerable grants from both levels of government for decades.

    Check out who paid for Commonwealth Stadium, Rexall and the Agricom for example.

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  69. This comment has been removed by the author.

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  70. //These are the relevant issues to be debated:
    1. Katz can pay on his own, especially if the arena revenue is worthwhile.
    2. The new arena will bring only minor benefits to the downtown, probably offset by losses to other restaurants and bats.
    3. The benefits referred to in 2. Could be bought for less elsewhere.
    4. If Katz doesn't get subsidized, he'll leave.//

    What about:

    5. What does Edmonton lose when Katz builds the arena district(with a new retail power hub) in Strathcona County, now that the Alberta government has paid for the outer ring road to get everyone to the arena and to shop and party there.

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  71. Stelmach doesn't sound very popular in Alberta to this outsiders ear, but I figure the province is likely more concerned with the huge amount of money required to rebuild Slave Lake then it is a hockey arena. Especially when they give money to Edmonton. Calgary will have it's hand out.

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  72. The line between private and public is not as clear as it is made to be at times.

    For example, if Katz wanted to build an ugly building (think superstore style) somewhere along Anthony Henday or between Edmonton and Leduc, he could probably do so for about 2/3 the cost of building an awesome building downtown. I suspect that it would be equally as profitable.

    So, if the City wants the new arena to be downtown and be beautiful, then there may be value in subsidizing it as that subsidy represents the public value of the development.

    It is makes good economic sense to capture and fund positive externalities.

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  73. Do you think 5. Is likely?

    I'm not sure 5. Is that big a loss to the city. How much lost tax revenue would that be?

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  74. Bookie, how much value will a pretty downtown arena provide?

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  75. godot10:

    You mean Strathcona County, basically Edmonton? No problem then, right?

    I doubt Strathcona County has the wherewithal to spend $200 MM on Katz's dream palace. If he wanted to put it there, it would cost him more money and the real estate benefits would be a small fraction of what he could do downtown.

    Why doesn't Katz spend $100M to get the hockey revenue? Why does he need all of it?

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  76. //You mean Strathcona County, basically Edmonton? No problem then, right?//

    Edmonton will have lost a chance for a generation to do something about the downtown wasteland, and to prevent it from spreading.

    A $1 billion dollar jumpstart into the downtown may be the last chance to Edmonton to blunt being the dumping ground for the provinces poor and indigent.

    If you rebuild the core and begin gentrifying the core, it will be much easier to deal with the challenge of poverty, because the poor will be forced to be dispersed rather than concentrated.

    This is probably Edmonton's last best chance of avoiding what happened to most American big cities in the last half of last century, to avoid becoming Detroit.

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  77. 4. If Katz doesn't get subsidized, he'll leave.


    Yeah, thats the big one. Word around is that he has moved to Vancouver and is miffed he even bought the Oilers in the first place.

    There are a lot of people in the arena debate that could not care less if the Oilers move. There are bunch that figure the Oilers can't move (lack of other locations and Bettman will save us), and there are others that would like to see the Oilers someplace other than downtown (Northlands, other developers).

    The bottom line for me is that there is an opportunity here to build something pretty special downtown and thereby improve my City. I don't really care if I have to pay a bit more in taxes to pay for it.

    I have already paid hundereds of millions of dollars to upgrade on overpass to South Edmonton common, infastructure to the Mall, roads, sewers, parks etc to assist developers sell houses in the new areas, and countless other projects that people don't even pay attention to.

    I will freely admit that what some of what Tyler says makes sense from an investment point of view. But there are lots of things done in Cities that are done not because they are to going to generate a monetary return, but because they generate a return in pride, good will, and a desire for people to live and invest in the community. We build parks, libraries, playgrounds, swimming pools, arenas, etc and they "lose" money all day long.

    Tyler don't live here. I can be damn sure if there was a question of whether they should build a park in his neighbourhood he might feel a little pull towards supporting it, even if it wouldn't include turnstiles to recoup the investment.

    The argument that the arena is not a good investment moneywise has palce in the debate. But it is not the only consideration.

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  78. godot10: I guess I have to spell it out for you. I was pointing out how blatantly hypocritical you were with Oakville, Oshawa, Cambridge, etc.

    This is probably Edmonton's last best chance of avoiding what happened to most American big cities in the last half of last century, to avoid becoming Detroit.

    This is ridiculous. This is intellectually dishonest hyperbole.

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  79. Increasing the population density is a key benefit as well.

    Every condo unit that gets built downtown is one less unit that gets built south of 23rd ave or north of 153rd ave.

    That is a very good thing.

    Possibly the best externality of the whole project.

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  80. They have each been subsidized to the tune of $240 million by the province over the last ten years to keep horse racing going.

    That $240 Million mentioned by Staples in his crappy, dishonest article did not go to Northlands.

    My understanding is that it works like this:
    At Northlands and at the smaller tracks in Lethbridge and Grande Prairie there is an on-site slots room.
    The revenues from these 3 rooms directly fund Horse Racing Alberta.
    Horse Racing Alberta than uses those funds to augment horse racing at four tracks.
    Most goes to Thoroughbreds & Standardbreds, but the smaller tracks also feature Quarter Horses, Arabians and other breeds.

    Most Provinces and States have some form of this structure.

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  81. I still don't give a dime without debt payment guarantees using cash flow from the new building.

    That's just common sense.

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  82. RQ

    How was I being hypocritical?

    I was pointing out the federal dollars being handed out to some of the wealthiest communities in Canada.

    I wasn't criticizing the handouts. I was criticizing the Katz's critics for their naivete as to the ways of the world.

    The Arena District is going into a depressed area. It is as or more deserving a project as many others.

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  83. My understanding is that it works like this:
    At Northlands and at the smaller tracks in Lethbridge and Grande Prairie there is an on-site slots room.
    The revenues from these 3 rooms directly fund Horse Racing Alberta.


    Perhaps the new casino on the rink site can have a section of "Oiler slots" and table games.

    All proceeds go to the debt payment on the rink.

    "Taylor Hall hold'em challenge" and "RNH slots" ought to be popular.

    I'd rope off the section with a velvet rope and have George Laroque as the greeter.

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  84. I wasn't criticizing the handouts. I was criticizing the Katz's critics for their naivete as to the ways of the world.

    The Arena District is going into a depressed area. It is as or more deserving a project as many others.


    You are ignoring the part where Katz gets all revenues on a tax free building he only puts up 25% of the construction costs and doesn't guarantee the debt payments the city has to make.

    I could get a $100MM loan for his 25% with the terms he is asking for. I'm not kidding either.

    That's the crux of this.

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  85. Yeah that is a dishonest statement. A downtown arena has nothing to do with a city becoming detriot. Detroit has beautiful Comerica and Ford Field and it still is what it is.

    As far as prairie cities are concerned there does seem to require some government investment to building up downtown cores rather then just more sprawl which is pretty cheap for builders.

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  86. As far as prairie cities are concerned there does seem to require some government investment to building up downtown cores rather then just more sprawl which is pretty cheap for builders.

    Excellent point.

    If not gov't investment, then incentives to re-develop land as opposed to developing new land.

    Tricky equation to say the least.

    If you put road blocks in front of new development, then housing prices soar.

    In order to get areas re-developed in the inner city, the gov't needs to provide a situation where its more profitable for the developer than mowing down another quarter section on the outskirts.

    Does a new rink do that?

    Probably to some extent. I know (80% sure, give or take) Qualico will pull the trigger on at least 2 buildings and Urban Landmarks will on another.

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  87. You are ignoring the part where Katz gets all revenues on a tax free building he only puts up 25% of the construction costs and doesn't guarantee the debt payments the city has to make.

    The city owns the building though right? Would this be an issue if Katz pays $10 million a year on his lease? $20 million?

    It's not like the city won't be taking their cut.

    If the city comes out millions richer after getting paid on their 35 year lease, then is it still a bad deal?

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  88. Word around is that he has moved to Vancouver.

    How credible is this rumour?

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  89. I'm not even sure Edmonton should aim at a single, high density downtown. Think lots of small, commercial main streets, modular walkable communities. Increase population density in pockets throughout the city.

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  90. Word around is that he has moved to Vancouver and is miffed he even bought the Oilers in the first place.

    I'm sorry, but I don't believe that for a moment.

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  91. If the city comes out millions richer after getting paid on their 35 year lease, then is it still a bad deal?

    As far as I know the building would be lease free to the Katz group.

    I could be wrong.

    Also,

    Re:Katz in Van

    Haven't heard that either and he has a spanking new $20MM house overlooking Hawerlak Park. He has properties elsewhere and doesn't spend a ton of time in EDM in the winter, but neither does anyone else who doesn't have to.

    He may have buyer's remorse for paying $200MM when ATL cost "ess than $100 (plus "relocation fee") and STL and DAL are looking like the franchises won't cost more than $120ish.

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  92. I'm not even sure Edmonton should aim at a single, high density downtown. Think lots of small, commercial main streets, modular walkable communities. Increase population density in pockets throughout the city.

    That's pretty much what they are trying to do with Griesbach, looks good so far.

    That's the plan for the airport lands too.

    High density downtown is rarely a bad thing for a city and there is lots of low density development that could be converted.

    Cuts down on cars on the street, fosters community feeling in a downtown etc., both of which are pretty desirable.

    Both are good.

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  93. A lot of the arguments pro given above by godot and others rely on the "they do it elsewhere" caveat and that to me is not a convincing argument in the least. Taking the opposite is certainly not a naive stance, but rather quite informed.

    One thing we should have learned from the ongoing global economic grief is that the status quo does not work; that a big savior government that spends like mad under the banner of being all it can be to all people, is a hindrance to an economy not an aid.

    There are arguments above that commingle infrastructure spending with the arena deal. There are also arguments that commingle the idea of there being an arena with its financing. There are some arguments that commingle parks and libraries with private venture entertainment.

    And then there is the location issue.

    As far as I can tell, most of the naysayers on this site are pro arena, don't give a damn where the developer locates it, but are not impressed with the structure of the deal. I think most of those people are in favour of the City spending money on infrastructure that provides safe efficient access to the area.

    Certainly that's the camp that I'm in. I think Katz should get to choose where his arena goes. I think it should be his arena in the same way it is his team. I think any private venture should have risk associated with it and that risk should be financed by that sector of society that specifically exist to do so: the banks. Risk has a wonderful way of disciplining and regulating an enterprise.

    I don't think that the taxpayers should take the role of banks in this issue or any other private development anywhere. I don't think governments should be in this business of placing their taxpayers at risk in third party private enterprises. That is an abuse of government and an economically foolhardy as recent years have proven.

    Now if he's asking for tax breaks to help cash flow finance the project, then hey, no prob. I'm all about cutting taxes. And spending too.

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  94. Some people here don't remember Bill Hunter.

    Q.E.D.

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  95. I didn't read all the comments as it seemed to turn to the arena debate, but in regards to Sutton, I think the key to his icetime and the situations he was used in lies in his defense partners throughout the year.

    Keep in mind, the Ducks defense didn't have Beauchemin and Mara until late in the season. It was Lydman/Visnovsky doing all the heavy lifing, an 18 year old rookie in Fowler, a sophomore in Sbisa (who was recalled to replace another in Mikkelson), Brookbank and Lilja, then old man Sutton.

    It looks like they were using Sutton as the vetran safety net to ride shotgun with one of their rookies. Probably Fowler at the beginning and then Sbisa once they brought him up (just a guess).

    Also, playing with two LH defensemen for the whole season, it's possible that Sutton played RD last year, which bodes well for him as an Oiler.

    I hope he gives us some decent minutes (at least in quality) next year, but I still can't stand that meathead.

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