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Edmonton Oilers Odds - Quinn takes over; Oilers still lack offensive punch

Posted by Don Melrose on 9/10/2009 11:07:42 AM
bet on hockeyThe Edmonton Oilers odds were hanging in the balance in the offseason as Dany Heatley decided whether he would accept a trade. But instead of giving the Oilers an offensive punch, he gave the Oilers a punch to gut and decided not to accept. Online betting handicappers have seen the Oilers miss the playoffs three years straight, and that streak will be extended.

Edmonton Oilers Odds: Oilers looking for scoring in-house

  • Pat Quinn back behind the bench
  • Goal scoring will be a problem for the Oilers
  • Nikolai Khabibulin takes over netminding duties

Edmonton Oilers odds maker breakdown: OFFENSE
Pat Quinn has a reputation of being good with veterans and not necessarily youngsters, but he’ll have to adjust as he returns to the bench after a three-year hiatus. The Oilers are employing a youth movement and the team didn’t develop as planned last year, which cost Craig McTavish his job.

The Oilers have a good, young corps upfront with guys like Sam Gagner, Andrew Cogliano, Patrick O’Sullivan and Dustin Penner, but none of these guys are at the level where you can count on them for 30 goals or 80 points. Heatley would have been a good pickup because he could have helped develop these youngsters, but without him, the Oilers are a big brick short of a load on offense.

Edmonton Oilers odds maker breakdown: DEFENSE
The sportsbook odds makers are going to be setting low totals for the Oilers this year because their offense is less than explosive, but their defense should be solid. The Oilers have a good corps of defensemen, including the offensive-minded duo of Lubomir Visnovsky and Sheldon Souray, and more traditional stay-at-home defensemen like Ladislav Smid and Denis Grebeshkov.

Just like on offense, the Oilers have a good corps but they don’t have any premier talent. This group will have to overachieve if they hope to make the playoffs.

Edmonton Oilers odds maker breakdown: GOALTENDING
NHL betting fans know the Oilers made a big move upgrading their goaltending this offseason with the signing of Nikolai Khabibulin. It will be interesting to see how he performs, as Khabibulin seems to play well in contract years and then slides a bit in non-contract years. There won’t be much pressure on him in Edmonton, which means he should be able to get under the radar and just play his game.

Edmonton Oilers odds maker breakdown: SPECIAL TEAMS
The Oilers had only 60 power play goals last year, which was sixth-worst in the Western Conference. As mentioned above, the lack of a true sniper really hampers them on offense as well as the power play. The Oilers also scored the second-fewest goals on the power play. Aside from the coaching changes, there is no indication that this team will be any better in either facets of special teams.

Edmonton Oilers odds maker breakdown: SEASON OUTLOOK
The Oilers are not a Stanley Cup contender whatsoever in 2009 but they might have an outside shot at a playoff spot. They have a lot of forwards who do the same things (small, speedy forwards with good hands) but they lack muscle up front. On defense, they should be improved thanks to the Bulin Wall, but again, there isn’t anything special.

With Quinn and associate head coach Tom Renney behind the bench, the Oilers should have a solid development year. This team will be competitive and if they put everything together, they could make the playoffs.

For more sports betting articles and previews of all 30 NHL teams, check back with the Betting Edge daily.

Don Melrose is's hockey expert.



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