• This is the end

    by  • April 10, 2010 • Uncategorized • 21 Comments

    Add another great quote to the hefty collection from The Captain this year. From the Montreal Gazette:

    As for Moreau, the Oilers will not pay $2 million for a fourth-line left-winger. He has to play higher up the food chain to earn that salary.

    “This line should work, playing against the other team’s top lines … we produced some offence and won the matchup on a majority of nights. Horc and I on the PK really clicked. I think we’re plus-3 in our last 15 or 16 games. That’s a pretty good run,” said Moreau.

    I’m not quite sure how Moreau is doing his math here – I can get him to even for the last 17 games but no better.

    As far as whether the numbers posted by he and Horcoff have gotten better and they’ve been winning the matchups, they haven’t really, although the shooting percentage has been up a lot lately. They still get dominated when they’re on the ice together in terms of where the puck is.

    Moreau1

    The scoring chance numbers tell the same story. I’ve got access to numbers from 15 of the 20 games in this period. Horcoff and Moreau together are an appalling 21 chances for, 52 chances against. Horcoff without Moreau is 21 for, 31 against. Moreau without Horcoff has one chance for and 8 against.

    Moreau’s quotes this year have sounded increasingly unhinged, in terms of not reflecting the reality of his own value as a hockey player at this point his career. There’s a cool quote from Ian Botham, an English cricketer, about the end of an athlete’s career: “For many sportsmen, coming face to face with irrefutable evidence of their mortality is the moment they dread above all others.” It’s increasingly difficult to find any evidence that Moreau is a useful NHL player and Botham’s point might explain some of Moreau’s more bizarre utterances about his worth.

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    21 Responses to This is the end

    1. PDO
      April 10, 2010 at

      So the question becomes… what do we do with him?

      I think the only thing worse than paying him $2,000,000 to be on the 4th line is paying him nearly $700k against the cap for the next 2 years to not pay on the team.

    2. PDO
      April 10, 2010 at

      Oh, and are you including the shorties? Because I would imagine Ethan has and I think they’ve been on for a few of them in that stretch.

    3. Tyler Dellow
      April 10, 2010 at

      I was for the +/- thing, although not in the chances – that’s ES only.

      I don’t think that the $700K against the cap should matter that much but if I’m Darryl Katz, I’m not sure if I’m wild about paying him $1.3MM not to be here next year.

      With that said, his performance has been so bad that I don’t know that they want him around. If he’s still setting a positive example, well, maybe it makes sense to keep him here. Otherwise, you probably bite the bullet.

    4. Woodguy
      April 10, 2010 at

      Is if possible to have a handshake deal where Moreau retires and works as a “pro scout” for the Oilers?

      Being a private company, its doubtful that anyone would need to see that he was being paid $2MM to scout.

      Get his wife involved so his ego doesn’t override common sense and he complains to the NHLPA or something silly like that.

    5. BRIdub
      April 10, 2010 at

      I agree with woodguy. Doesn’t that happen all the time when coaches are fired with remaining years on their contract?

    6. taze
      April 10, 2010 at

      Saw an interview with Moreau on Global a few nights ago where they asked him about the possibility of being traded this summer. First he said something like, “yeah, you never know what might happen, but yeah, you never know, yeah.” He certainly didn’t seem upset about the possibility.

      Then he said: “Whatever happens, I’m really proud of what I’ve accomplished here.” I’m still trying to figure out what he has to be proud of.

    7. Ted
      April 10, 2010 at

      My guess is he’s been a guy who can call guys out now and then in the locker room and everyone generally sees him as the good guy still. That would explain to me the reason he was voted captain.

      Combine his poor play the last while and add in a bunch of new guys, and you can maybe see where the rumors of a locker room split (true or not, who really knows from the outside) come from. Hard to call guys out when you are on the list of guys that need to be called out though, if that’s the case.

      Judging by his quotes this year, it seems that he’s in serious denial. Maybe 700K over two years is simply be addition by subtraction at this point.

    8. Deano
      April 11, 2010 at

      Moreau’s vision is impaired by his head being in a place that receives no light.

      Woodguy – The Oilers can make him play in the AHL to get his money. The scouting job you suggest is much less humiliating. I doubt they’d have to offer him the full $1.75MM (his original contract included a $1MM signing bonus iirc).

    9. Woodguy
      April 11, 2010 at

      Saving Moreau from public humiliation of going to the AHL is why I suggested the softer landing route.

      As terrible as he has been, 11 years needs to count for something.

      If he’s headstrong and refuses, then by all means riding the bus in OKC is fine, but he should get an option if they can’t move him at the draft.

    10. Schitzo
      April 11, 2010 at

      The softer landing route has to be handled very carefully, if the team is serious about it. The CBA is very specific about players not being able to enter into “undisclosed agreements of any kind… involving consideration of any kind to be paid to the Player… either prior to, during, or after the term of the Player’s SPC”

      I would expect that they’d need to pay him the going rate for a scout, and expressly clear it with the league ahead of time. Offering him a million dollars under the table to go watch WHL hockey for a year would be a Bad Idea.

    11. Bank Shot
      April 11, 2010 at

      I think Moreau probably still wants to play some hockey and maybe win a Stanley Cup. He’s only 33.

      If the Oilers don’t trade him in the offseason, then he’ll get traded at the deadline and sign a cheaper contract with someone else the season after.

      I highly doubt the Oilers are going to bury him in the minors because he’s too outspoken, or Quinn doesn’t like his sideburns, or he’s overpaid by a million bucks.

      The only reason anyone has been buried in the minors thus far is because they play on a team expected to make the playoffs and that team really needs the cap space. I really don’t expect that trend to change. Billionaires don’t like flushing money down the toilet anymore then you or me.

    12. dawgbone
      April 11, 2010 at

      Funny enough, that sv% that Horcoff has seen lately is actaully Hasek-esque compared to what he had earlier.

      Cruising around it’s funny to hear the line on Horcoff now… things like “sure, he turned it on when the season was over, how about this play at the beginning?”.

      He got crushed in terms of sh% and sv% while he was on the ice in the first 40 games or so. Since then, the sh% hasn’t gotten any better but the sv% behind him has increased drastically. Meanwhile, his corsi and scoring chances +/- have gotten worse.

    13. April 11, 2010 at

      For what it’s worth I took his comment about being +2 or +3 in the last 15 or 16 games as a comment about their goal differential on the PK. He remarked that it may be a unique run in his career in that interview which certainly doesn’t sound like it would be true for EV play. And in fact, Moreau is +1 over that period of time (the last 15-17 games are all the same; I think Horcoff is -2). So it’s a slight exaggeration on his part, but I think his point that it’s an impressive run stands up pretty well. They’re not so good at EV, no question.

      As for what he has to be proud of, I think there’s a lot. Moreau has been here for eleven seasons (and was a good player in many of those seasons), was part of a team that made the SCF’s, was named captain of the Oilers and contributed enough to the community that he was recognized with the King Clancy just a year ago. Those aren’t trivial accomplishments and I think that they’re worth being proud of.

    14. Woodguy
      April 11, 2010 at

      Schitzo: I didn’t realize the language was that strong. It would have to be delicate.

      Bank Shot: Moreau turns 35 on Sept 22, so he may look at the retirement option. I don’t think they bury him in the minors either. If they really don’t want him around and cannot trade him, my money is on a buy out.

    15. speeds
      April 11, 2010 at

      Woodguy:

      Maybe they would buy him out, but what about re-entry waivers?

      They’d save ~ 200K in actual money. It’s true that it would cost the Oilers ~300K more in cap room next season, but it would also result in no cap hit in 2011/12, when they might prefer to have the cap room?

    16. April 12, 2010 at

      Trade or waivers is my preferred option, followed by re-entry waivers, followed by letting him just play out the contract whether it’s in Edmonton or OKC. A buy-out doesn’t make a lot of sense to me.

    17. April 12, 2010 at

      Great quote from Botham; cricket is awesome. Moreau is not.

    18. Woodguy
      April 12, 2010 at

      Speeds,

      As much as the Oiler management doesn’t seem to care about their players, I really do not think they would ever “demote” a captain to the AHL, even if it was just to make him available on re-entry waivers.

      I don’t think they do it out of loyalty, and I don’t think they are smart enough to try that route.

    19. April 12, 2010 at

      They don’t actually need to demote him to try re-entry waivers though. They can just put him on re-entry and then keep him in Edmonton if no one claims him.

    20. Woodguy
      April 12, 2010 at

      Scott,

      Didn’t know that, thanks.

    21. April 16, 2010 at

      “Классный пост”

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