After his promised 10 games assessment milestone, Oilers' President of Hockey Ops and GM Peter Chiarelli had some direct comments about the team. While I was reading it on my phone, I thought it was practical Hallowe'en joke or something by a fan impersonating what he'd want to hear from a GM. Alas, no. It was Chia Pete himself.
- It sucks Ebs has been injured and after trying to use Hendricks on the top line, he got injured, then Klinkhammer, who got injured
- Slepyshev needs to deliver more and he will likely get sent down
- Goalies have been good, despite a bad game by Nilsson
- Bottom 6 has been inconsequential and disappointing--hello Anton Lander and Teddy Purcell, we are talking to you!
- Connor McDavid has been outstanding and has elevated the games of linematesYak n Pouliot, which will only get better
- The defense... oh boy, the defense. We've talked about this to death. We need a legit top pairing, blah blah, we miss Pronger, shoudn't have traded Petry, blah blah. But what I'm not seeing comments about is proper pairings, i.e. a puck-handler and a stay-at-home guy. Klefbom-Schultz is two puck handlers and really no stay-at-home guy. The current pairings should be: Sekera-Fayne, Klefbom-Gryba, Davidson-Nurse. Gryba thinks he's a puck handler and hell no. It's why he's making so many mistakes. Guy is big and mean.
Most of all--we finally have a GM that thinks the same way all of us armchair bloggers do.
And with that, look for some trades coming end of November to improve the defense. Because with Nurse now here, likely permanently, something's gotta give with one of the left-side defensemen. It won't be Sekera or Klefbom. Davidson and/or Nikitin will need to go. On offense, all signs point to Purcell getting the boot and as I've been saying for a while, Anton Lander.