Oilers’ owner Daryl Katz recently released a letter to fans to express his disappointment in yet another losing season. Katz also took the time to express his support of the current management group who have taken a lot of criticism for the team’s awful performance.
The letter, available on the Edmonton Oiler’s website, has already received a very negative reaction, mainly because it lacks any substance. One part of the letter really stands out to me:
I know this will almost certainly be the eighth consecutive year since we made the playoffs. I hate that fact as much as anyone, but the reality is that this is only year four of the rebuild that started when we drafted Taylor Hall. The good news, if you can call it that, is that other teams that committed to fundamental rebuilds went through the same kind of droughts over the same kind of time frames, or longer. That doesn’t make it fun for anyone; it just means we have to stay the course.
Now a lot can made about Katz’s assertion that the re-build is in year four or that the course that they are on is a terrible one. But my main issue is the absolute loser tone the letter takes and how there doesn’t seem to be much urgency. It totally comes across as a message to the sponsors and the ticket holders rather than the entire fanbase. Maybe it’s just me, but as an owner you should demand a lot more, especially when you’ve missed the playoffs for eight straight seasons.
And just when the fans were reeling from this embarrassment, a nice article from The Copper and Blue provided some high level stats on the number of shots the Oilers have taken since 2006.
The Oilers have been outshot by 2,689 shots over than span. The next closest worst team, the Jets, are 1100 shots better – 2 per game – than the Oilers in 8 years. The best team in the league by this measure, the Red Wings, have been 6000 shots better, more than 10 per game, than the Oilers.
Fun times in Oil Country!
The Katz letter in a lovely word cloud: