Category: cap issues

Horcoff Deserves Better


After reading David Staple’s recent blog post, I too felt “enough is enough” when it comes to Shawn Horcoff’s critics who criticize without any proof to back up their opinion. An opinion is nothing substantial without the requisite information to back it up.

So let’s begin.

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According to BTN, Here are the Advanced Stats Comparison of Three Familiar Names in the Oilogosphere:

DUSTIN PENNER LW EDM 27 78 11.71 0.92 -0.00 0.11 7.0 0.79 0.72 0.20 1.71 45 32 2.96 2.10 13
DANY HEATLEY RW OTT 15 82 14.97 0.21 0.04 0.00 2.2 1.17 0.64 0.39 2.20 59 64 2.88 3.13 -5
NIKOLAI ZHERDEV RW NYR 13 81 13.23 1.32 0.03 0.03 14.6 0.95 1.06 0.50 2.52 56 44 3.14 2.46 12

The highlighted column describes QUALCOMP, or Quality of Competition. As you can also see, Penner and Zherdev rape Heatley in terms of Advanced (+/-).

Dany Heatley salary = $7.5 M a season

Dustin Penner + Nikolai Zherdev salary = about $8.5 M or 9 M a season

Dany Heatley

6’3″ 216 lbs, scored 39-33-72

Main Comparison(s): Brett Hull

Main Criticism(s): Lack of heart, team spirit, etc.

Dustin Penner

6’4″ 240 lbs, scored 17-20-37

Main Comparison(s): Scott Hartnell, Ryan Malone

Main Criticism(s): Lack of heart, fitness, etc.

Nikolai Zherdev

6’2″ 197 lbs, scored 23-35-58

Main Comparison(s): Ales Hemsky

Main Criticism(s): Lack of heart, team spirit, etc.

As you know, the Rangers passed on paying him 3.9 M for one year as awarded by an arbitrator. Zherdev was seeking 4.75 M a year so I’m assuming his eventual settling price will be somewhere in that range, near the middle. Maybe 4.3 M or 4.5 M.


The Oilers are better off signing Zherdev and making salary cap room for both Zherdev and Penner than for Heatley alone.

Why, you ask?

  • Zherdev is a PP and SO specialist who can play on both your 1st and 2nd line
  • Penner plays PP, PK, and anywhere from your 1st to 3rd lines
  • Heatley is a guy who can play PP and only play on your 1st line
  • If one of Zherdev or Penner gets hurt, you’re not completely screwed
  • Penner has size that Quinn can utilize

This would give the Oilers a couple pretty decent scoring lines, especially with Penner and Gagner paired up and playing lesser oppositions they would probably kill the soft minutes. Here’s a preview:

Zherdev – Horcoff – Hemsky

Penner – Gagner – WHOEVER

Moreau – Pouliot – Pisani

Reddox – Brule – Stortini


The only problem for Tambellini … is making cap room right now. But it will cost the Oilers only 1 M to 1.5 M more than they would be paying for Heatley.

But if you ask me, it’s a no-brainer.


The league is looking into whether Marian Hossa’s contract with Chicago had some sort of illegal intent to its structuring. I think the league has better options than actively policing such problematic occurences.

It’s called prevention. Continue reading