WJC: Thanks for the memories, Team Canada

bingofuel
January 06 2010 10:23AM

Regardless of what Willis has to say about Jordan Eberle's future in the NHL, I can't help but be beaming at this young man's performance in the World Junior Tournament. Whether he's breaking out, or in some kind of weird career Twilight Zone of Goodness right now isn't really that important to me.

OK, it *is* important. Or rather, it will be important once the memories of the tournament fade. Because despite the fact that Canada lost the gold-medal match (to an outstanding Team USA, can I just say), Eberle was the tournament MVP, and right now we honour his contribution to Canadian hockey.

Later on this week, we can resume the hand-wringing. Right now, let's be proud he's playing for the good guys.

Also, to the people of Saskatchewan: you are a classy bunch of hosts, and the way you all cheered on Team USA when they won the game last night was astonishing and inspirational. A lesser audience might have filed out quietly. A douchier audience would have booed, but not you. You applauded a well-fought tournament, and a winning Team USA. You've done this Nation proud.

In the words of CanucksArmy General Cam Davie: "The fans in Saskatoon are showing insane amounts of class. Good on ya.

To Team USA: We'll see you boys next year. Oh yes. We will.

Now I feel like eating a sandwich...

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Bingofuel is the handsome cyborg who pulls all the levers behind the curtains of the OilersNation. When he isn't running the site, he's plugged into a wall socket, recharging. Or Brownlee and Wanye are playing "keep away" with him. He gets little to no respect.
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#151 TigerUnderGlass
January 07 2010, 03:53PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

Good examples, but I disagree with your assertion that the ability to dominate has little to do with sucess at higher levels.

Talent scouts look for talent at lower levels. If talent at lower levels didn't have a high probability of translating to talent at higher levels, they wouldn't bother.

I think we should be viewing the spectacular failures (such as Schremp and the ones you listed as your examples) as the exception rather than the rule.

That isn't what I said. Please read again. I said it has little to do with it UNLESS the physical tools are there.

Calling those guys exceptions is laughable because year after year after year in every sport in the world players dominate lower leagues only to lack the necessary tools to manage the bigs. Skill alone does not translate, the physical ability needs to be there.

I would suggest that there are 5X as many of these guys as there are guys who manage to succeed in the top leagues without high end physical tools. If Eberle becomes a star he will be the exception, not the rule.

But since you think I am cherry picking...lets have another look.

Here are just the quarterbacks to win the Heisman since 1990 who failed to have meaningful NFL careers:

1990 Ty Detmer 1992 Gino Torretta 1993 Charlie Ward 1996 Danny Wuerffel 2000 Chris Weinke 2001 Eric Crouch 2003 Jason White 2004 Matt Leinart

The only quarterback since 1990 to be the best in his class to go on to a real NFL career is Carson Palmer, and Ta-daaaa, he is the one who had the best tools for the job at the pro level.

Here are Wooden award winners since 1990 who failed to carry on their play at the top level:

2008 — Tyler Hansbrough, North Carolina 2006 — J. J. Redick, Duke 2005 — Andrew Bogut, Utah 2004 — Jameer Nelson, Saint Joseph's 2003 — T. J. Ford, Texas 2002 — Jay Williams, Duke 2001 — Shane Battier, Duke 1995 — Ed O'Bannon, UCLA 1994 — Glenn Robinson, Purdue 1993 — Calbert Cheaney, Indiana 1992 — Christian Laettner, Duke 1990 — Lionel Simmons, La Salle.

These were the best of the best too, this does not even include other dominant players who fell much much further from grace. At least most of these guys made the league.

Now a quick look at CHL player of the year winners who also could be considered not great:

2007–08 Justin Azevedo, Kitchener Rangers 2002–03 Corey Locke, Ottawa 67's 2001–02 Pierre-Marc Bouchard, Chicoutimi Saguenéens 2000–01 Simon Gamache, Val-d'Or Foreurs 1997–98 Sergei Varlamov, Swift Current Broncos 1996–97 Alyn McCauley, Ottawa 67's 1995–96 Christian Dube, Sherbrooke Castors 1994–95 David Ling, Kingston Frontenacs 1992–93 Pat Peake, Detroit Junior Red Wings 1991–92 Charles Poulin, St-Hyacinthe Laser

True McCauley had a career, but clearly if Eberle comes in and becomes McCauley he is not saving the Oilers either. Plus Hodgson is a wait and see, and I left Radulov of the list because he probably proved enough even though he's gone.

Now looking at these lists I would definitely suggest that my position is not indicative of the exception, but of a completely normal occurence. It seems to me that dominating at lower levels has very little to do with an ability to succeed at higher levels unless the prerequisite tools are already in place.

If anyone wonders why I keep using examples from other sports it is because I am trying to show that this is a common theme to athletics in general, not just hockey.

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#152 TigerUnderGlass
January 07 2010, 03:54PM
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@TigerUnderGlass

I didn't realize how long that was while I was typing it, sorry.

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#153 Chris.
January 07 2010, 04:55PM
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@Crash

I'm sure the fees will be less exhorbitent... Based on careful market research the Oilers will charge exactly to the maximum of what the current Edmonton market will bear (much like PPV, beer, parking, etc.)

Katz runs a business. I get it. It's okay. I just want some honesty. Let's face it: It's poor timing to be talking about additional fees.... But I'm not going to be financially committed to the Oilers through these tough times if I'm going to get the shaft three/four years from now.

BTW. Just conducting some independent market research: Is $1000.00/seat acceptable? $5000.00? What? Season ticket holders... What is your breaking point?

To those on the waiting list: What would you pay to snag my seats in a new building to watch a competative team?

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#154 Chris.
January 07 2010, 06:02PM
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As promised. The response I recieved from the Oilers regarding Seat license Fees:

Hello Chris,

Thank you for your email and I appreciate your feedback. With the plans of a new building in the future, many rumors have circulated that the organization does not endorse or support. Unfortunately because so few details have been decided, we are unable to confirm or deny all of the questions the public may have. I have personally heard nothing of “seat licensing” and believe that Mr.Laforge was ensuring he did not rule anything out that may in the future be considered. Once again with so few details completed, even the most remote of possibilities shouldn’t be publicly dismissed.

Your feedback is very important to us Chris and if this option is considered in the future, your valued season seat holder feedback will be extremely important resource. I would hope that you continue to be a Oiler season seat holder knowing that no action would be considered without extensive input from yourself and the rest of our season seat holder base. Thank you again Chris for your feedback and please don’t hesitate contacting me if you should have any further questions.

Regards,

Tyson Lazaruk

Edmonton Oilers, Oil Kings, Capitals

tlazaruk@edmontonoilers.com

(780)414.GOAL (Main Line)

(780)409.3704 (Direct Line)

~Seems good.~ Tyson Lazaruk didn't hear "anything about seat licensing... He even called such a thing the most "remote possibility"... Too bad LaForge doesn't want to "rule out" anything that may be considered "in the future".

I was looking for an outright denial... In my experience: You don't buy land without advance funding planning... And you don't ever give disgruntled customers a straight answer.

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#155 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
January 07 2010, 06:33PM
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@Chris.

maybe it is just the cynic in me, but doesnt that look like it could be a generic form? all they do is insert your first name in a couple of spots to "personalize" it and fire it off?

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#156 Eddie Shore
January 07 2010, 06:59PM
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Who is this Tyson guy and what is his role within the organization?

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#157 Chris.
January 07 2010, 07:36PM
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@Eddie Shore

I don't know who Tyson is... but I e-mailed everybody! (Including Rexall Sport Lawyers like Shawna Vogel for example...) Laforge says in one interview that the Oilers are looking at all the funding models used by other franchises (like Toronto); and then he later avoids making a comment when specifically asked about potential license fees... For Tyson to say he's "heard nothing" on the matter smells a little false.

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#158 postal
January 08 2010, 02:09PM
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Oilers losing their "folksy, golly gee" community focused attitude. Even going to an Oil Kings game is an expensive night out.

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