So, there's been a LOT of talk about how Kevin Lowe has screwed up my beloved Oilers. Full blog posts have been dedicated to how he has mis-managed the team, going over point for point the mistakes he has made since He Who Shall Not Be Named *Spit* left town to sunny Anaheim:
- Getting only Joffrey Lupul, Lad Smid 2 first round picks and 1 second round pick for Pronger *spit*
- Signing Roloson, Staios and Pisani for a combined average $8.7 million per season
- Trading Ryan Smyth *sigh* for Robert Nilsson, Ryan O'Marra and a first round pick
- Signing Dustin Penner to an offer sheet worth $21.25 million over 5 seasons and forfeiting their first, second and third round draft picks in 2008
The points above seem to be the most troubling to Oiler fans, although others have stated his reluctance to fire any of the coaching staff and not giving Rob Schremp a decent shot with the big club.
We all know that this team probably won't make the playoffs this year and there's a good possibility that they will miss the post season next year.
You gotta admit though, the Oilers are pretty well positioned for the John Tavares sweepstakes in the 2009 draft. They will have their own pick for the 2009 draft and could end up with a couple of more draft picks if restricted free agents such as Stoll and Pitkanen get signed away. Even if those guys get signed by a top team like Detroit, wouldn't the Wings - Or any team for that matter - still just be a couple key injuries away from self destructing?
A couple of years ago, the Raptors ended up with the first round pick and because of a weaker draft, ended up taking Andrea Bargnani. This is nothing against Il Mago. He could still develop into the next Dirk Nowitzki. But if the NBA doesn't introduce the age limit when they do, or if the Raptors end up with the #1 pick a year later, I'm cheering for a front court that involves both Chris Bosh and one of Greg Oden or Kevin Durant.
Kevin Lowe may have made some mistakes, but maybe there's more to it. We've missed out on Stamkos, but Lowe might be ensuring that we get a more than fair shot at Tavares. Of course, I could totally be wrong and this thought could be just the ramblings of an Oilers fan about to lose it.