Thursday, June 14, 2018

New employee costs truck rental company in Edmonton business.

In peak season we usually rent a reefer truck for the summer.  We have had pretty good success using company x. I don’t like to use real names in my stories as I am not out to trash anyone.  Pretty good success until company x hired new employees. Bob the generic name I use for new employee name the first time he took me to a truck tried to tell me the gauge was the issue, the truck was actually full of fuel.  I took one look in tanks and new the guy didn’t know what he was talking about even though he was trying to sound like he did.

Strike one.

A few weeks later I book a truck for pick up Monday afternoon.  I go in to get truck. Do the paperwork and we end up walking around the parking lot until Bob finds the truck in the shop getting repaired.  Bob says come in the next morning at 630 am. He will have the truck for them then. I tell him I “probably” won’t be there till 7 am. He says ok but if I do come early to look for him out in the yard.   I call a cab which company A pays for. Waste more time going back to the factory without a truck.

The next morning I can’t sleep, am up early and head for company A for 630 am.  We have a delivery out of town and I need that truck loaded, on the road for 8 am.  I get to company A, find Bob in the yard, and he says he needs to know if the truck is ready.  This is when I am starting to feel agitated. You tell me to come at 630 am and you don’t know if the truck is ready???  If it is me, I screwed up, told a customer that I had a truck and didn’t have truck the night before, I would know the night before I left if the truck was going to be ready at 630 am.  The fact this is a facebook post tells you that the truck wasn’t ready. Bob didn’t bother to say to the mechanics to tell him before they go home the night before if the truck is ready.  Bob didn’t communicate with the mechanics about need to have truck ready for 630 am. Bob just made bs promises he couldn’t keep. Needless to say I said screw this when Bob came back to tell me the truck wasn’t ready.  I walked out. Cursed in the parking lot. Hopped in my SUV, called and made adjustments. Bob called me 30 minutes later saying the truck was ready but by then I had changed everything. It was too late.

Strike two.

The thing about me is I feel bad after I get angry.  I realize Bob is new and he is going to make mistakes.  I like company A and have always had success with them. A single moment in time doesn’t define a company.  I wrote an email after telling Bob I was sorry for getting angry. I explained that I felt like he should of communicated with the mechanics about the commitment he made for that truck to make sure they either stayed late or came in early to get the truck on the road for me at 630 am.   If the truck wasn’t going to be ready then I should of been contacted either the night before or early that morning. You tell someone to come in for 630 am you better have a truck. Bob’s response was no problem, he was just caught in the crossfire. That response bothered me because he took no responsibility for his actions, acting like he was an innocent in this all.  Caught in the crossfire he created by not communicating with his technicians and making promises he couldn’t back up.

Strike three.

Today I emailed another truck rental company.  I am not saying I will stop using company A but I am going to look into renting from other trucking companies.  My sergeant in bootcamp said that in life when you screw up, take responsibility for it. It is clear to me that company A has a pass the buck attitude, blaming techs for rental department writing cheques they can’t cash.  If renting from company A is making me cuss in a parking lot them company A don’t want my business.

Master Iceman

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

McDavid, Draisailt are a big reason behind historicially bad Oilers penalty kill

Nobody should mistake Draisailt or McDavid as hard nose, in your face hockey players.  Skilled players in general are not wired that way and there is nothing wrong with that.  97 and 29 are on the Oilers to score goals or set up other people to score goals.  Nobody is paying the money those two players get to dive in front of pucks, and get in opposing team's faces.  The thing about penalty kill is you need those players who live and breath defense.  They don't care about the glory of scoring goals or making a pretty pass.  Players who succeed on the penalty kill live and die for the applause from the fans after two minutes of killing themselves to stop the other team's power play from scoring.  It is the appreciation of the guy in the penalty box after a successful kill that means everything.  The goalie who pats them on the back or the coach that says heck of a job after taking a slapshot to the gut that matters to the penalty killers.

I know we all saw Gretzky and Messier on the PK back in the 80's and part of us thinks why not McDavid or Draisailt.  The thing is with guys who breath offense there mind is always on scoring.  It isn't on getting in front of shots.  It isn't on keeping the box, instead it is the dreams of intercepting a pass, a bobbling puck getting past the dmen on the point leading to one of those beautiful short handed, McDavid drops the puck to Draisailt for a goal.  The problem is when you have players whose minds wander to offensive glory they end up stretching the 4 man box out leading to those wonderful passing lanes for the opposing teams to make cross ice passes.  Cross ice passes lead to goalies having to move horizontally in the crease opening up all sorts of good lanes to beat the goalie.  A good defensive player, that makes his living preventing goals understands to prevent most high percentage scoring chances for the opposing team on the PK you have to collapse just as hard as you expand your box to take away the point shot.  When the puck is passed from one defense to the other it is bust your ass back to position and not let that pass through the box happen.  Nothing against McDavid or Draisailt but those two players are not wired to play that way.  They want to attack not defend. 

You might point out that none of the other players the Oilers put out on PK are any better.  Therein lies the problem.  Neither McDavid or Draisailt are the types of players you want on a good PK.  I believe half the reason they are out there so often is a lack of reliable talent behind them.  Coach has no choice in putting them out there because Letestu and Kassian are not doing any better.  You can only play the cards you have in sports and if you don't have the traditional, hardnose dive in front of pucks, bust your ass to get back in position penalty killers, then you play the best of a bad hand.  Directly 29 and 97 are not doing well on PK.  Coaching staff looks like they are out to lunch... but in reality indirectly it is the GM who bought out a useful penalty killer in Benoit Pouliot, and didn't replace heart and guts Matt Hendricks.  The idea that those who play on the 4th line don't matter is an illusion in hockey.  They matter because they do the things nobody else on the team is willing to do.   The bottom half of the line is there to be the grit, the grunts, the we will hurt so the stars can focus on scoring goals more then preventing them.  Good teams have players that are willing to sacrifice there bodies, for the greater good of the team.  I just don't see those players on the Oilers.

one more point... Just from a pure energy standpoint... there is nothing harder than stopping and starting on the PK.  That two minutes would equate to 30-60 second bag skates.   That energy for McDavid or Draisailt is not being used scoring goals, it is used preventing goals.  In every team sport the best offensive talent are rarely defensive stoppers.  It isn't because they can't play defense.  It is playing defense the way it needs to be played often takes away all your energy, leaving little for offense.  That is why when making up a team there is often a line that coaches use against the other teams best players, and on the PK.  They kill themselves so 29 and 97 can make fans scream in joy after another goal or 20. 

My two cents.. why do you think the Oilers PK is struggling?

They call me the iceman and if you need ice in Edmonton, AB I am your man.

Master Iceman

Saturday, October 21, 2017

11:00 AM start time to Oilers, Flyers game, what was the NHL thinking.

Games that start in the AM are all mental as athlete's bodies are creatures of habits.  Playing at 1:00 am eastern time is likely around the time guys are use to relaxing, not firing on all cylinders.  When do you eat your pregame meal.  I have always felt older teams with more experience do better at the early games just because age teaches players how to mentally will themselves to compete when the body wants to sleep.

5 observations in Oilers 2-1 loss to the Flyers.

1.  I bet the analytics of giving up the first goal and winning are not very good.  The Oilers have to do a better job at start of the game.  They cannot continue to give up the first goal and hope to have success.  Based on the fact they suck at the PK that means not taking penalties.  

2.  By not developing a shot McDavid is like a pass first point guard in the NBA.  You just play off the guy, keep him in front of you, take away passing lanes and dare him to shoot.   McDavid is no different.  His wrist shot is so slow.  He puts his weight on stick, twists body, goalie has a smoke and then he shoots. No slap or snap shot to speak of.  Any competent NHL goalie if he sees McDavid shoot is going to stop his shot.  For all of McDavid's greatness you just have to stop the breakaways and clog up passing lanes to really limit his ability.  I say limit because you can't stop great players, you can just limit them.  What also limits McDavid is he loses so many of his faceoffs.  

3.  Lucic, an older player was a force in this game.  Strong game on the puck.  Make that man an ice man because when you hit him it is like running into a wall of ice.  I love watching Flyers bounce off him.  So strong on the boards.  Didn't show up on score sheet but nobody on his line did.  Strome was missing in action and RNH played way too much on the outside.  Never was able to get the puck into good scoring areas.  

4.  Some like to point out how Oilers keep winning shot metrics which I believe is a fancy way of saying Oilers out shoot the opposing team.  This may be the case but it sure doesn't seem like there are a lot of hard saves being made by the opposing goalies.  What Oiler has a good shot?  Other than injured Draisaitl I can't think of one Oiler with a shot that keeps goalies awake at night.  I also don't see enough passes leading to shots when opposing goalie is moving and not set.  It seem like the team is doing the whole Jordan Eberle, dust the puck off and shoot the puck giving goalies chance to get square to the shooter.  With the size of goalies these days I just don't see how you are going to score unless the goalie is moving, not set.  

5.  Adam Larsson brought the ice tonight.  He seems to have found his game.  You can see him getting in better position, making some real solid hits.  I think at the start of the season he had to adjust to the new ways they were calling the rules but now has seemed to settle in back the really strong physical player we have come to love in Edmonton.  

Disappointing loss.  Team definitely has to figure itself out without Draisailt in lineup.  Looks very slow on ice.  Thoughts?  Leave a comment.

Master Iceman