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

Welcome to Oil Acumen. All Oilers, all the time... Occasionally other stuff.

Saturday, 9 November 2013

11/09/13 The Deceptive Nature of Goaltending

Your eyes can deceive you. Goalies can appear to be extremely poor and extremely excellent in small sample sizes. That doesn't make either thing the truth about a player.

Sunday, 3 November 2013

11/03/13 (Don't) Hire Your Friends!

When Twitter's former CEO Evan Williams asked his advisor, Bill Campbell, what the worst thing he could do to screw up the company was, Campbell's answer was simple and to the point.

Saturday, 6 July 2013

07/06/13 Why I Hate the Ference Contract, and Other Things I Do Like

I returned from a month-long early summer hibernation to find that the Oilers were up to their old tricks again - even though they jettisoned Steve Tambellini! Imagine! Some good things happened too, but that stench of questionable management is still lingering like a tuna sandwich under the couch cushions.

Thursday, 9 May 2013

05/09/13 Hired Help: David Clarkson

Perhaps the most talked about free agent forward in the upcoming NHL off season is David Clarkson. The 6'1", 200 pound right winger is coming off a 15 goal season in 48 games, and has scored 45 in his last 128 outings. The Oilers will make a pitch for him, but how hard should they go?

Thursday, 2 May 2013

05/02/13 The Summer of Sam

Back on draft day in 2007, the Oilers picked a 5'11", 191 pound center named Sam Gagner. He's seen dizzying highs and disappointing lows, and all of that has led him to this summer of 2013. The biggest decision of Gagner's career - and the biggest decision for the organization regarding him - is coming.

Wednesday, 17 April 2013

04/17/13 Rushing Klefbom

Just before midnight on Tuesday night, The Journal's Jim Matheson tweeted that the "Oilers see Klefbom being partner for Justin Schultz. Hoping Klefbom can be as good off hop as buddy Jonas Brodin." Yikes.

Thursday, 11 April 2013

04/11/13 Asset Management Version 2013

One of the people pictured above is an NHL defenseman, the other could be runner-up in a pie eating contest. Mindbender moment: they're the same person! Yes, it's clear Theo Peckham came into camp out of shape this season, but that doesn't mean he deserves an entire year on the bench.

Friday, 5 April 2013

04/05/13 Shea Weber: What Would It Take?

The limitation that prevents the Nashville Predators from trading Shea Weber ends on July 19th. It seems completely crazy to trade one of the league's top defenseman, but stranger things have happened under lower pressure circumstances.

Monday, 25 March 2013

03/25/13 The Mess On Defense

The trade deadline is looming and it appears that Ryan Whitney could be headed out the door. In his place the Oilers are attempting to add collegiate UFA Danny DeKeyser. Unless something else happens between now and next season, the defense will still be a mess.

Thursday, 21 March 2013

03/21/13 Trade Targets: Marcus Foligno

So there's a fire sale going on in Buffalo and some savvy teams might just be able to snag some talent off their underachieving roster. Oilers fans have long had their sights set on defenseman Tyler Myers, but there's another name in Buffalo that could be of interest: Marcus Foligno.

Monday, 18 March 2013

03/14/13 Trade Targets: Keith Yandle..?

Way back in June, a report came out from Darren Millard at the draft, which said explicitly that a "deal is close" involving Keith Yandle. Obviously the trade never materialized, but that's often the case with significant trades at the draft. Could he move now?

Monday, 11 March 2013

03/11/13 Trade Targets: The Case For Kulikov

The recent scoring touch of Oilers defenseman Ryan Whitney may have helped his value heading into the NHL trade deadline, but it doesn't mean that Edmonton once again has a quality puck mover on the left side of the defense. Enter Dmitry Kulikov.

Monday, 4 March 2013

03/04/13 Oilers Make Season-Saving Trade For Mike Brown

Not wanting to be outdone by the bold actions of Jay Feaster to the south, Steve Tambellini pulled off a trade for the perfect asset. Mike Brown is gritty as anything.

Monday, 25 February 2013

02/25/13 Road Trip Questions

The fabled nine game road trip began with an overtime loss on Monday night, and the Oilers are left with more questions than answers. Nuge snake-bitten? Yakupov with 9:05 of ice time? Khabibulin stealing the starting job? Where did I leave my keys?

Monday, 11 February 2013

02/11/13 Confidence Waning

A 14 shot effort on Sunday evening is something that the Oilers should not allow from themselves, but it's a symptom of a larger problem. Players that were shooting at the beginning of the season have stopped doing it. No really, it's bad.

Thursday, 7 February 2013

02/05/13 NHL Standings By Shots On Goal

As of this writing the Oilers are sitting in 15th in the NHL's overall standings, but they are 22nd in another important category: Shots On Goal per Game. It's a decent indicator of how things will go in the long term. I'll show you how.

Thursday, 31 January 2013

01/31/13 Are The Oilers Better?

We're seven games into the 2013 NHL season, and the Edmonton Oilers are coming off of a gutsy comeback and shootout loss to the San Jose Sharks. They're now 4-2-1, but are they better?

Tuesday, 29 January 2013

01/29/12 Justin Schultz A Number One Defender?

Back in July I wrote that "unless a trade materializes out of left field, it appears that the Oilers will have to develop a number one defenseman in-house." Justin Schultz looks like he could be their man.

Friday, 25 January 2013

01/24/13 Why We Watch + Rulebook Breakdown

Remember Thursday, January 24th. Sometimes there are games that remind sports fans why they bother watching, and this was one. I'll be damned if that didn't feel as close to winning a playoff game as the Oilers have had in a long time.

Wednesday, 23 January 2013

01/23/13 Odds and Ends: Subban, Paajarvi, Arena Deal

The TSN Quiz was an interesting one on Wednesday night. When asked their opinions about PK Subban's fate, two of the three panelists leaned toward a trade, including Bob McKenzie.

Tuesday, 22 January 2013

01/22/13 Time To Panic?

Allowing six goals in the first period is a good reminder how the Oilers amassed all this talent they've got. Now, if only they could stop doing that. Here's what the underlying numbers say:

Sunday, 20 January 2013

01/21/13 Postgame Analysis from Opening Night

It has been 286 days since Oilers fans have seen their team win. April 1st of 2012 to January 20th of 2013. Thanks, lockout. Here are some quick thoughts from the game.

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

01/15/13 Odds and Ends: Redden, Horcoff, Powerplay, Road Trip

Lots in the news today, highlighted by the new compliance buyout rules. Now that teams can buy out players this off season without it counting against the cap, some are wondering if the Oilers would be interested in the soon-to-be-bought-out services of Wade Redden.

01/14/12 How Fistric Helps

It was opposite day in Edmonton on Monday as the Oilers traded a draft pick for some immediate blueline help. Sometimes it's good to be wrong. Here's how Fistric helps upgrade the defense.

Sunday, 13 January 2013

01/13/12 McKenzie: Oilers Have "Great Motivation to Upgrade the Blueline"

This tweet went out on Sunday morning, and Bob McKenzie is one of those guys whose word can be taken seriously. Now that the trade market is back open, could the Oilers get something done?

Saturday, 12 January 2013

01/12/12 It Takes More Than A Good Powerplay

The powerplay is likely to be the bread and butter of the Edmonton Oilers for the foreseeable future; at least until the youngsters find their way at even strength. So does that  typically translate into a playoff spot?

Thursday, 10 January 2013

01/10/13 Playoffs Or Bust: The Magic Number

So Adrian Dater at Sports Illustrated has the Oilers ranked as the 3rd best team in the NHL. But how many points will it take to make the playoffs in this shortened season? How many wins?

Monday, 7 January 2013

01/07/13 Mulligan: Shawn Horcoff

The NHL is back and so am I. Finally, there is enough actual news to go around. Starting off the year on a bitter/sweet note, however, with the news that compliance buyouts will be available to NHL teams. The captain should be a candidate.