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The Oilers Love Their Players

February 9, 2010


Rod the Bod got the C stripped in Carolina, Patrick Marleau was informed by a new coach that he’d no longer be the traditional leader of the San Jose Sharks, and Mike Modano swallowed the pill of being replacd by a younger, faster, tougher captain named Brendan Morrow. The Oilers? They toss out C’s and A’s like communist Russia handing out bread.

How many players have worn a letter for the Oilers this year? Let’s see now, Moreau’s the captain, Horcoff and Hemsky wore the A on the road, Souray and Staios at home. Then people started getting hurt, and everyone except Joey Moss got a crack at steering the ship. Penner, Strudwick, Pisani, the guy at Rexall that yells “coooooolld beer!” and I’m pretty sure Barrie Stafford laced ’em up in practice to captain team blue to victory over the entire Oilers roster, who were all allowed on the ice at the same time so Pat Quinn could force-vomit himself in the shiny new dressing room. Before this year they were pretty quick to dish out an A to Jarrett Stoll just because he took two shots in the feet (not on purpose) in one penalty kill. Four assistant captains? What’s the point?

Seriously, great players around the league are forced to earn the privelege of being a captain of an NHL franchise, and even then sometimes they get that honour revoked because they’ve either been a part of the group for too long and a new voice is needed, or a franchise player comes along and makes too strong a case to be the longterm backbone and stabilizing factor the team needs. Marleau had the C stripped by a brand new coach, and now he’s having a career year. Mike Modano is still a threat every time he’s on the ice. When the Oilers talk about changing the culture of their franchise, they need to take a look at who they award leadership resposibilities, because that responsibility should be earned. Just because four or five players might be capable of handling themselves with a letter over their heart doesn’t mean they should automatically get it. Give the room to three players and let everyone else look up to that leadership core.

This comes back to Oilers management over-valuing their assets. Word to the wise folks, not every player drafted is going to work out, and just because you like someone’s work ethic doesn’t mean they belong on an NHL roster. Make some tough decisions and move on already.

6 Comments leave one →
  1. Jenn permalink
    February 10, 2010 3:33 pm

    But who would you give the “C” to on this Oiler team? Surely Moreau playing his heart out, while not always contributing, is better than handing it to Comrie (our “big trade”) who almost died two seconds after he was traded to Edmonton and probably won’t stay playing for them next year? Maybe nobody should wear the “C” because that gives the illusion that there is something to lead and the only place this team is going is down the toilet.

  2. February 10, 2010 4:12 pm

    I wouldn’t take the C away from Moreau, that’s not the issue. The issue is being so quick to give out “official” leadership roles to players, as in handing out four A’s. Leadership should be earned, not bestowed before it’s actually achieved!
    If this team has no captain, well then so be it. But they’d better freaking find one.

  3. Tricia permalink
    February 24, 2010 2:58 pm

    Horcoff…? isnt he supposed to be amazing?

  4. Tricia permalink
    February 24, 2010 3:03 pm

    what about vistellarsky…?

    • February 24, 2010 4:25 pm

      What? Who is Vitellarsky? You can’t make players up, they won’t help the team.

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