a·cu·men [ak-yuh-muhn] noun: keen insight; shrewdness

Welcome to Oil Acumen. What follows is a blog dedicated to ending the tyranny of Oilers management, and making hockey fun to watch again, dammit.

Saturday, 30 June 2012

06/30/12 Schultz and the Transforming Oilers


With Justin Schultz deciding to join the Oilers on Saturday, a message has been sent to the league. The team has been completely transformed in a few short seasons. Here's what it could all look like.

Wednesday, 27 June 2012

06/28/12 Free Agent Field Thinning


Scratch Dennis Wideman off the list of free agent defensemen, but the Oilers may not need him. The list is reportedly down to two teams for Justin Schultz.

Tuesday, 26 June 2012

06/27/12 Ralph Krueger and the Kids


Ralph Krueger is expected to be named the next head coach of the Oilers on Wednesday. Krueger stepped in for Renney in five games this past season. How did he use his players?

06/26/12 Dominos


On Wednesday the Justin Schultz camp will begin to consider offers from NHL teams. Schultz is the first of a series of dominos to fall, and once he has made his decision it will set off a series of events that could affect the entire league.

Monday, 25 June 2012

06/25/12 Odds & Ends: Draft Edition


Now that the dust has had a chance to settle on the 2012 NHL Draft, we can take a look back at what it could mean for the future of the Oilers. Here's that, and some other thoughts.

Thursday, 21 June 2012

06/21/12 Could It Be Yandle?


File this one under the heading "not to sure," but these two tweets appeared in my Twitter feed just a few minutes apart. The first, from SportsNet's Darren Millard should be considered credible. Not so sure about the second.

06/21/12 Oilers Storylines Before the Draft


Twas the night before the draft and all through the house, hockey fans are shaking with anticipation and just want it to get started already. It doesn't rhyme, but it's true. Here are some storylines that Oilers fans will keep an eye on.

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

06/19/12 The Oilers Won't Trade Down


Some believe that the Oilers could trade down at the draft in the hope of adding two or more pieces that better fit their immediate needs. The problem with that scenario is that the draft order and player rankings work against it.

Monday, 18 June 2012

06/18/12 The Edmonton/Nashville Link


On the Monday edition of Inside Hockey on The Team 1260, Darren Dreger discussed the link between Edmonton and Nashville, and possible ways that the two organizations could fill each other's needs. It's a long shot, but could it happen?

Sunday, 17 June 2012

06/17/12 The Best Oilers Draft Ever


Wayne Gretzky helped, but the Oilers had an extremely strong start to their existence thanks to their first entry draft. They hit the big time with each of their first three choices, avoiding the land mines that would plague them in later years. The year was 1979.

Saturday, 16 June 2012

06/16/12 Revisiting the 1994 Draft


The Edmonton Oilers selected Jason Bonsignore fourth overall in 1994. It wasn't the strongest of drafts, with Ryan Smyth having played the most games of any first rounder, but the Bonsignore pick hurt. Here are a few other hits and misses.

Friday, 15 June 2012

06/15/12 All Signs Point To Trade


Those people hoping for the simple and obvious course at the upcoming NHL Entry Draft may be disappointed by the Oilers. Over the last several days there's been smoke billowing on the horizon, and maybe things aren't as simple as walking up to the podium and selecting Yakupov.

Thursday, 14 June 2012

06/14/12 Making Sense of the Defense


The story is well known. The Oilers need to add one or more defensemen in order to compete. But the team already has five NHL defenders under contract and some more who belong in the NHL. There isn't room for them all.

Tuesday, 12 June 2012

06/13/12 No Really, What Is MacTavish Going To Do?


Is it out of line to think that there's more going on than what we're being told when it comes to the MacTavish hire? There's no doubt that he's a smart hockey mind, but we still don't know exactly what he's going to do. What vital role necessitated the creation of a new position?

Monday, 11 June 2012

06/12/12 Thoughts On A Royal Victory


Congratulations Los Angeles. Your Kings have won the ultimate hockey prize. Here are a load of thoughts about this, that and some other things.

06/11/12 Kevin Lowe and Building Defense


As managers go, Kevin Lowe is not perfect. Some of the seeds of the disaster of 2009-10 and beyond were sewn by the former Oilers GM. However, he has shown an aptitude for building defense. Even though he's not at the helm any more, it won't hurt to have his insights. A quick look at his recent track record shows us why.

Friday, 8 June 2012

06/07/12 Paajarvi and the Trade Block


Where does Magnus Paajarvi fit into the Oilers equation going forward? He has the tools to be a very good NHL player, but the team's other needs might see him bumped out of town.

Thursday, 7 June 2012

06/07/12 Simple Questions with Complicated Answers


On Wednesday those sneaky Oilers managed to finally make the move that everyone was expecting. Tambellini is back for "multiple years." What about this organization necessitates taking an eon to make a simple decision? This isn't the first time.

Wednesday, 6 June 2012

06/06/12 Expect A Bounce Back From Belanger


On December 16th of this year Eric Belanger will turn 35 years old. In NHL years, that's not an age at which you'd expect a player to be on the rise. On the other hand, when you start as low as Belanger's 2011-12 season, there's nowhere else to go.

Monday, 4 June 2012

06/04/12 The Salary Cap Spending Trap


The NHL salary cap has been raised to roughly $70.3 million, which is the number that general managers will work with in the off season. However, that number is only temporary and could trap a team or two in salary cap hell.

06/03/12 Jets Have Defensive Depth to Spare


The organizational strength of the Winnipeg Jets is on defense, and the Winnipeg Sun wondered aloud if a player like Tobias Enstrom could be a trade chip for a top-six forward. Could the Oilers mine their Manitoba neighbors for help on the back end?

Saturday, 2 June 2012

06/02/12 Andrew Cogliano One Year Later


On July 12th of last year, Andrew Cogliano was traded to Anaheim for a second round pick in 2013. Fans seemed to understand that the Oilers couldn't have too many small players, and there wasn't much complaining. How did the Ducks do with Cogliano? How did the Oilers do in the trade?