Friday, August 24, 2007

"Roll all the dice"

Looking at our roster for the upcoming season, it looks to me like K-Lowe has decided to roll all the dice on a few big gambles. If they pay off, we'll be laughing all the way to the bank. I'll be laughing all the way to the bank because of online betting. Er, playoffs. But if they don't, I think we've just gambled away the deed to the house.

IF Penner can beat, or at least match, his numbers from last year, and IF Roloson's age doesn't catch up with him, and IF Nillson can become a real NHL player and IF at least one of our hot prospects can work wonders, and IF our best players can stay healthy, then we could be in a pretty good position.

But those are some pretty big "ifs".

Don't get me wrong. I'm a fan of Garon, and I think that we'd still be almost good in net if we had to start, but we wouldn't be contenders, not by a long shot.

The "ifs" that I think are likely to come true are:

Penner will at least match his numbers from last year. Even if they were a fluke, Horcoff and Hemmers are a lot better linemates than Perry and Getzlaf, and that seems like the most likely match up.

Nillson will really prove himself this year. I've been a fan of his for a while, and I really think he can put up at least 15 goals this season. He won't make up for Smyth, but he'll be fine.

The "ifs" that I think may come true are:

Our players will most likely stay healthy. No team can have that much awful luck two years straight, right?

Roli will probably do better than what you'd expect from someone his age. Most good goalies stay good, even up to their retirement year.

The "if" that I just can't see happening:

Sadly, I don't see any of our prospects becoming a miracle man anytime soon. A couple of them might make the big boy's club, but I really don't see any of them putting up more than a couple of points.

So, Oil fans. Are we willing to roll all the dice on these risky bets? I am. I think we'll get 4/5 of these, and that may just be enough to turn us into an eighth seed playoff team.

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