CBC Edmonton News (TV): Oilers season post-mortem, GM search and off-season approach

cbc edmonton logoI joined Nancy Carlson, the new host of the CBC Edmonton News, for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 19:30 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, April 8)

Topics we covered:

  • The key reasons why the 2018/19 season was such a disaster. Included on the list: poor roster construction, lack of offensive production, poor possession numbers, horrible penalty kill, inconsistent goaltending – just to name a few.
  • Key takeaways from the Oilers press conference this morning: lack of urgency among executives when it comes to long-term strategic planning, the same messaging we’ve been hearing for a while (and little action), and the overall, passive approach the Oilers are taking with their general manager search.
  • Course of action this off-season, which should include being ruthless with their cap situation, and creating a market for the players whose value might be perceived as higher than it actually is.

Thanks again to the team at CBC for making it all happen. It was cool to be the first guest on the new set with Nancy!

CBC Edmonton News (TV): Recent success, depth players and the GM search

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Lindsay Highmoor on the CBC Edmonton News for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 16:50 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, March 28)

Topics we covered:

  • Re-cap of Tuesday night’s 8-4 win against the Kings and the star players leading the way.
  • The Oilers depth issues, and the importance of finding reliable talent on value deals for next season.
  • The Oilers overall numbers at even-strength (5v5) this season
    • Goals/60 – 2.21 (26th)
    • Shots/60 – 28.44 (26th)
    • Goals against/60 – 2.59 (21st)
    • Shots against/60 – 31.34 (20th)
  • Special team results:
    • Powerplay – Goals/60 – 8.06 (7th)
    • Penalty kill  – Goals against/60 – 9.44 (30th)
  • The Oilers search for a general manager, and the importance of collecting as much information and insight as possible before hiring someone.
  • Preview of tonight’s game against the Dallas Stars.

Data: Natural Stat Trick

CBC Radio Active: The countdown is on to end of the Oilers season

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Rod Kurtz on CBC Radio Active to talk all things Oilers. Full segment is here: CBC Radio Active (2019, March 21)

Topics we covered:

  • The season as a whole and the key factors for yet another season without playoffs.
  • Bob Nicholson’s search for a GM, and his missteps and role in the Chiarelli era.
  • The importance of leveraging analytics as part of the larger strategy around decision-making.

CBC Edmonton News (TV): Loss to the Devils, recent ten games and the general manager search

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Min Dhariwal on the CBC Edmonton News for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 16:00 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, March 14)

Topics we covered:

  • Last night’s loss to the Devils and the playoff aspirations. For me, it’s been obvious for a while that the Oilers aren’t playoff contenders.
  • The key drivers for their recent success, which has largely been goaltending. Over their last 10 games, the Oilers have six wins, but it’s due in large part to their team save percentage at even-strength (93.42%, 6th in the league). The team has posted a 45.15% Corsi For percentage (score-adjusted) over that stretch, a good indicator that this team has some major issues to address.
  • The penalty kill, which allowed another two goals last night, and continues to be one of the worst in the league. I mentioned a couple things the Oilers could look into doing, which I had also written about recently: Drivers and Anchors on the Penalty Kill – The SuperFan (2019, March 4)
  • The general manager search, and the importance of expanding their scope and looking for ideas from outside the industry. Related article here, which includes my previous work.

Data: Natural Stat Trick

CBC Edmonton News (TV): Oilers winning streak, Draisaitl’s performance and upcoming games

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Alicia Asquith on the CBC Edmonton News for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 17:45 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, March 7)

Topics we covered:

  • The Oilers recent road trip, with three straight wins against Ottawa, Columbus and Buffalo.
  • The Oilers last 10 games, and some of the keys. Worth noting that the team was trending upwards in mid February, largely due to improved defensive play, but are now finally getting results thanks to improved netminding.
  • Leon Draisatl’s performance. Noted that his individual shooting percentage is at 20.0% at even-strength (Data: Natural Stat Trick). Well above his career average of 10.96% heading into the 2018/19 season – so definitely worth tempering expectations for next season.
  • Upcoming home games against Vancouver and Toronto.

CBC Edmonton News (TV): Loss against the Leafs, trade deadline re-cap and the penalty kill

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Alicia Asquith on the CBC Edmonton News for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 19:15 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, February 28)

Topics we covered:

  • Wednesday night’s loss against the Leafs on national television. Good reminder of how far the Oilers are from being a competitive team and becoming a legitimate contender. The Oilers could not match up with the Leafs skill and depth. And if there’s anything the Oilers can learn from Toronto, it’s the long-term vision and strategic planning that needs to happen before a general manager is even hired.
  • The Oilers penalty kill, which remains as one of the league’s worst. After 64 games, the Oilers rank 28th in the league at 4v5, allowing 8.15 goals against per hour. In their last 25 games, the Oilers have allowed 9.44 goals against per hour. What’s especially alarming is the increase in the rate of unblocked shot attempts (i.e., Fenwick) against over the course of the season (Data: Natural Stat Trick). Note, the red line indicates the league-wide average of 70.5 Fenwick against per hour.

Oilers - 4v5 - Fenwick - 25

  • Early on in the season, the team was allowing one of the lowest rates of Fenwick against on the penalty kill in the league, but unfortunately their goaltending had been dreadful. The team has seen a gradual increase in Fenwick, and are now one of the league’s worst at preventing unblocked shot attempts – something that the coaching staff needs to address considering the penalty kill is bleeding goals and  off-setting the goal production from the team’s powerplay (currently generating 8.2 goals-for per hour, 8th best in the league). Considering Hitchcock’s previous success with penalty kills, I was expecting a lot better.
  • We also touched on the Oilers passive approach to the deadline, and the importance of leveraging opportunities like the trade deadline and the upcoming draft to get things on track. Asset management and finding efficiencies in the cap (i.e., value deals) are critical, and the Oilers have got to be better at this, and far more aggressive and ruthless, if they want to win championships.
  • With playoff hopes dwindling – Moneypuck had the Oilers at a 1% chance of getting in to the playoffs – we discussed what the Oilers should hope to accomplish over their remaining 19 games. It’ll be important to give Koskinen lots of starts to get a sense of what they have, and give ample ice time to the younger forwards who have contracts with the Oilers next season. The off-season should be busy for the Oilers, so they need as much intel on their own players to make well-informed decisions. Hopefully the Oilers are gathering more information on every other roster as well, and getting a better understanding of what the market will be like – pretty much for every position – this summer.

Big thank you to everyone at CBC for putting it all together. 😉

 

CBC Edmonton News (TV): The Oilers GM search and the upcoming trade deadline + radio spot

cbc edmonton logoI joined host Tanara McLean on the CBC Edmonton News for my weekly television segment to discuss all things Oilers. Clip is here and starts at the 16:40 mark: CBC Edmonton News (2019, February 21)

Topics we covered:

  • The Oilers last 10 games and the areas that they’re starting to improve on.
  • The general manager search, and what type of leadership the Oilers need in the front office. Touched on a few things from my recent article. 
  • The recent acquisition of Sam Gagner and some of the benefits he brings to the roster.
  • The upcoming trade deadline, and why the Oilers need to be acquiring assets for next season.
  • Upcoming games against New York and Anaheim, and what to expect from each club.

I also joined host Tara McCarthy on CBC Radio Active to talk all things Oilers. Full segment is here: CBC Radio Active (2019, February 21)