Flames at Oilers, G55/07-08

It’s easy to describe the leaves in the Autumn

And it’s oh so easy in the Spring
But down through January and February
it’s a very different thing.
On and on and on
through the winter of our discontent.

-Van Morrison

If this team was a horse they’d shoot it. I don’t really know what to say, and based on MacT’s words this afternoon he’s at something of a loss now.
No playoffs, no lottery pick. The worst of it: Kevin Lowe will enter this summer with something to prove.

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73 Responses to "Flames at Oilers, G55/07-08"

  1. jon k says:

    There is literally, absolutely no reason whatsoever to follow the team for the rest of this season.

  2. heed says:

    there wasn’t a reason last year. there isn’t one this year. unfortunately, that’s not near enough to keep me from following the train wreck. GOILERS!!! i guess.

  3. PDO says:

    What?

    Horcoff?

    WHY?!

    …. can we at least put 16 between 27 and 83, in hopes of the magical pump in dump in the mystical quantity for quality trade?!

  4. doritogrande says:

    We’re fucked. But at least the kids get the proverbial 500ABs.

    Marty Petersen starts with 83/27.

    This game might turn out if Garon’s playing and stands on his head, and Cujo lays an egg against NHL opposition.

  5. jon says:

    “There is literally, absolutely no reason whatsoever to follow the team for the rest of this season.”

    Actually, I will follow until the trade dealine to see what kinda shenanigans K.Lowe can get into on the trade front. Then it will be time to bunker down and hibernate right through until the start of free agency missing the draft. I think watching what coulda been at the draft might be even more painful then the next 30 games. Mark my words, everyone will be sick when the Copenhagen chewing Irishman walks to the stage and picks in the top 5.

  6. doritogrande says:

    I posted this elsewhere LT, but we’ve had a huge fucking string of injuries ever since Chad Moreau took over. Is there something to be concerned about here, whether he’s pushing the bodies too hard or too often?

  7. Ribs says:

    Hoorah, Cujo is playing. Shutout, anyone?

    Here’s a fun little page I stumbled upon that I assume is meant for media broadcasts…
    Game Notes Page
    …Oilers now 27th Overall on the powerplay…..ya!

  8. Ribs says:

    …Also note that fan favourite Rob Shick is in lead stripes this evening.

  9. Slipper says:

    Atleast they all look good in swim trunks. We can thank the Chad for that.

  10. mike w says:

    I’m thinking of changing my blog to another team.

    To think that this team could have the first pick in the draft for the first time ever and it’s not even theirs. Of course, everyone knew giving that pick up was a terrible idea and here we are.

    I want to punch something in the face.

  11. mc79hockey says:

    Gene growling into the camera. Lovely. Absolutely lovely.

  12. Dennis says:

    - Gene’s wearing his funeral suit

    - Lowe’s already proved something to me; he lists the Oilers fan as fool

    - Burke with Lowe’s lottery pick might shock the edm media into something resembling objectivity.

    - I wish I still had the Expos to love

    - Hoyas will probably have a long run in the tourney.

    - Lakers nothing if not interesting.

  13. doritogrande says:

    There’s one of the schnide.

    I thought Joseph could be shakey to start, love it when something actually goes our way.

  14. mc79hockey says:

    “The battle of the Battle of Alberta play by play guys?”

    I hope it’s a death match in a small cage filled with irate wolverines and that Peter Loubardias is in for Quinn.

  15. honkey says:

    That’s not a penalty, the refs are really crap right now.

  16. doritogrande says:

    I cannot believe the shit our “captain” is pulling. Why take a needless elbow to Phaneuf’s head? That’s not hockey.

  17. honkey says:

    Flames pp is scary bad, and without Dion in the backend for 5 min they have noone who can deliver good breakout passes.

    Oilers looking good lets see if they can keep it up for a full 60 minutes.
    I’ll put some money on Flames and as I never win on sportsbetting I guarantee an Oilers win tonight :)

  18. Lowetide says:

    An elbow to Phaneuf’s head isn’t hockey, it’s more a public service.

    I find sports so strange. The Oilers haven’t gotten 5 good plays out of Pisani in 10 games and he gets a beauty goal in the first, and then Geoff Sanderson is Adam Oates on the 27 goal.

    That’s why they play the games.

  19. Black Dog says:

    I disagree – this team hasn’t played with enough sand or urgency for a lot of the year.

    When you don’t have the talent you had better do something.

    Phaneuf and Reghyr have been pulling shit for a long time with guys like Hemsky.

    Moreau has given Ugly something to think about and for one period at least this team has shown some gumption. More then they did the last twenty games of last year.

  20. Black Dog says:

    Sorry – I’m a slow typer – to clarify I disagree with the statement about Moreau and Phaneuf.

  21. Dennis says:

    Ferraro’s on during the intermission and the Canada AM weatherman asks him about the impact of 10′s injury. Ferraro says, among other things, that MacT uses him against the other team’s top lines.

    That’s just a lie.

    Even though losing a two goal lead to Cgy would hurt, I’m not in a half-bad mood. Pats lost and last night’s latest Wire ep was great so things could be worse.

  22. mike w says:

    I think the Oilers have played at their talent level all year, sometimes more. But yes, they suck.

    The lack of blowouts is a check mark in MacT’s “pro” column.

  23. doritogrande says:

    Lt and BD, yes Phaneuf deserves to get whammied, but why not do it honourably. He could have just as easily dropped his gloves and popped him in a fair fight.

  24. mike w says:

    Cuuujjoooo

    Cuuuujjoooo

  25. doritogrande says:

    Who are these guys in Blue? And what have they done with our Edmonton Oilers?

  26. doritogrande says:

    Worst Battle of Alberta fight. Ever.

  27. Black Dog says:

    dg – I could with that except Phaneuf is a big weasel. I can’t think of a guy who has a bigger reputation of being such a tough guy who actually is not.

    Seriously the guy has the reputation of Gordie Howe and he plays like Sean Avery.

    And he has taken advantage of the Oilers for a couple of years now so I have no problem with Moreau taking a cheap shot at him. A little of his own medicine and I’ll bet next time he sees Cogliano in the corner he won’t take a run at him.

  28. ClaytonMagnet says:

    wow – Huggy Bear looked like he was trying to tongue-kiss Sarich’s ear there.

  29. mike w says:

    I think Cujo has made the Oilers look pretty good. I don’t see Kipper letting those 3 in.

  30. Slipper says:

    Dennis,

    Did you intend on putting one of those winking emoticons behind that Ferraro is lying line, or what?

  31. Black Dog says:

    Such negativity Mike! What happened to the fresh face youth I once knew?

    Oh yeah, this season and last.

  32. doritogrande says:

    If Ladi’s not careful, he’s going to blow a load on the ice. The kid’s just got too much testosterone. He needs a girl.

  33. mike w says:

    Nothing matters.

    We all just turn into dust, Black Dog…

  34. Black Dog says:

    Someone needs a hug.

  35. ClaytonMagnet says:

    Call Zack!

  36. doritogrande says:

    clayton,

    Like him in the little I’ve seen. He actually hit something, which is more than I can say about half this team. Doesn’t look like he’ll do much in the scoring department, but he’s going to be one tough sumbitch to play at EV.

  37. DBO says:

    Sanderson seems to be flying, although the hands have definitely gone bye bye. Glencross looks OK, he hits and that’s something we don’t see much. the team seems a little pissed off tonight, with more hits and nastiness. If they played with this much emotion all the time, teams wouldn’t take so many liberties.

  38. Ozzieoiler says:

    This must be the first time Cujo hasn’t put his hex on the Oilers.

    I’m at work here and loaded up the game to see the score. 3-0 was a pleasant surprise.

  39. Dennis says:

    Slipper: No, not at all. I’d say that going back to late Nov, MacT has been running 16 Plus against the toughs and not the 10 line.

    Faulds just ripped off Lovitz’s liar character from SNL.

    Mike: I know you’re not blaming CuJo but I just wanted to say that he’s giving up some rebounds but there’s not a lot he could do about the score either. On the first goal, he stopped 34′s initial shot but Fernie lives to fire away for another day. Third goal sees us get a great couple of bounces. Only thing I’d quibble over is the second one and that’s only because of his size. 27 beat him to the glove but if CuJo was bigger, that shot probably goes off his arm instead.

    Overall, a very nice effort thus far from the Oilers.

    We’re getting ‘something’ from every line besides the Stoll trioka.

  40. Slipper says:

    Yeah, but not all the time Dennis. BTN’s game logs show a pretty diverse field of opposition. Sometimes the best defenders and sometimes the top scorers.

    Maybe I heard Ray wrong. Did he say Horcoff only and always plays the against the best players?

  41. doritogrande says:

    Fuck Godard. You don’t throw punches at a goalie.

    GlenX just won his way into the hearts of Oiler fans.

  42. Lowetide says:

    Glencross has some nice speed and size. Good balance and can make a pass. He’s probably a 15-goal role player but he made a beauty play in his own zone down low by covering for the D (Smid?) on a low cross ice attempt.

    Smart player.

    This Calgary team is a weird one. They almost look like one of those old style teams that leave it all at practice because the coach wears them out.

  43. doritogrande says:

    “Tired of waiting” by the Trews. Perfect.

  44. honkey says:

    Nice to see Oilers stand up for them self.
    A few more games like this and you could actually keep watching Oilers without Horcoff.

  45. Tyler says:

    No, not at all. I’d say that going back to late Nov, MacT has been running 16 Plus against the toughs and not the 10 line.

    I thought that he’d backed off running 16 at the toughs, myself. Desjardins’ quality of comp numbers still have tougher TOI for Horc than Stoll. His game logs run out at the Isles game but looking at Vic’s site…it looks like he backed off the super hard match with 10 against the toughs but they were still seeing a lot of it. About 4 min against J-Tho to Stoll’s 5. In the TB game, Stoll hardly played at ES and Horc went head to head with their three good players all night.

    It’s tough to understand what the hell is going on with the bench this year.

  46. mike w says:

    Did I just see Stortini ON THE POWERPLAY?

    No no no…

  47. mike w says:

    Nice!

  48. doritogrande says:

    Sure made Godard pay for his dumb-fuck plays. Get ready for a great Saturday game.

    That was an amazing shot by Gagner. Don’t think Cujo’s seen that yet, but that’s what happens when you don’t play in the NHL for 8 months ;)

  49. godot10 says:

    //That was an amazing shot by Gagner//

    I hope Hemsky was taking notes, because he never takes that shot.

  50. Lowetide says:

    Considering the actual talent (as opposed to potential) on each side it is difficult to explain the gap between these two teams tonight.

    If the score had been 5-0 the other way no one would have batted an eye.

  51. doritogrande says:

    That was unexpected. Nice, but unexpected.

    GlenX made some very nice contributions to the team tonight. He hit, he skated, and most importantly he defended his team. He’s going to fit in nicely if Stoll can ever get something together at EV.

    Speaking of Stoll, he’s damn lucky he’s got a bit of a shot because he’d have no points if not for the powerplay glory time. He’s working hard but nothing’s going his way.

    Gagner should have been on the powerplay all year judging by this game. We drafted him because he’s offensively creative, let’s give him that chance to wow us.

    Nobody can speak ill of Zach Stortini’s play tonight. He was one of the better Oilers tonight and hit everything in sight. Lovin the Huggy-bear handle.

    Garon was there when we needed him, not that he was tested all too much.

  52. ClaytonMagnet says:

    Whew, can’t wait for Saturday. Tickets to the game, then I leave for the Mayan for two weeks on Sunday. Don’t get no better =)

  53. Ribs says:

    Wow, they really punched this one home tonight. The effort was everywhere and the force ended up going in the right direction for a change. I’m kind of amazed no Oiler was carried off in a stretcher. I thought for sure Moreau’s shoulder was going to give out when he hit the ice after that fight.

    Pisani! I hope this game signals his resurgence to his former greatness.

    Sanderson! Screw Therma-Blades, give me whatever he has strapped to those old feet!

    Moreau! Maybe should change his number to eleven if he can find a shot?

    Glencross? Nice debut!

    Penner! This guy is filling a larger void than most would imagine. He gets in front of the net, he makes little plays, and the best thing is… he can score! Screw you, Lupul!

    Many thanks to the Flames tonight. They weren’t expecting a game this difficult to win.

    Cujo – get some new pads! Rebounds were horrid….and what was with that blocker to the ground save?

    I know the Oilers can’t possibly play this way consistently but it’s sure nice to get one of these games from everyone every once in a while.

  54. Paulus says:

    Complete effort by the Oil tonight combined with things bouncing their way, few defensive miscues, solid puck-stuck-to-his-logo tending, and the Flames looking uninterested in anything not goonery related. For the latter aspect alone, from the upper deck, not that entertaining from a pure hockey standpoint; coulda been so much more.

    CuJo actually played really well behind terrible defensive coverage, especially round the crease.

    Negative: Hemsky looked hurt in the 3rd, all game somewhat. Didn’t play much in the 3rd, although the game was (mostly)already in the bag.

  55. Vic Ferrari says:

    Dennis/Tyler/Slipper:

    I agree with Dennis, though it’s nice to see Horcoff finally getting some love for playing the tough minutes for years (excepting any team that has Doug Weight on it, MacTavish needs counseling on that issue).

    Granted I haven’t been watching many full games, but I think it’s not always fair to go by icetime. A guy like Ovechkin puts up some impressive head to head icetime numbers against good players, and some of that is the work of the opposing coach no doubt, nobody wants their depth or young guys out against him. And Boudreau is probably cool with that against quite a few teams, esp in the East, if they are trailing on the score clock.

    Still, as someone on here commented during the game vs WSH, it seems like OV comes over the boards a helluva lot against tired players and when the puck is starting to move in the right direction. It’s better offensive ice time than it appears by the H2H ice times methinks.

    Same thing has been going on for a while with the Oilers since Thoresen got the call for the Stoll line I think. Since then, if there was a ‘hard’ button on the arm of your chair (sort of the opposite of the Staples Easy Button :) ) … then almost every time you pushed it to qualify “this would be a shitty time to be coming onto the ice in a contract year” … Stoll has been over the boards for the lion’s share of that IMO.

    Again, I’ll qualify that by saying that I’ve only watched the games in bits and pieces since Christmas. Either that or recorded and speed watched them. In either case I don’t have a great feel for the flow of most of those games.

  56. Bruce says:

    Saw the first two periods and the Oil were all over the Flames for large stretches. Garon (4th shutout!) made a few stops and Cujo really didn’t, but I still thought Oil were full value for the lead and in control.

    Nobody can speak ill of Zach Stortini’s play tonight. He was one of the better Oilers tonight and hit everything in sight. Lovin the Huggy-bear handle.

    Glad it’s not just me that sees the improvement in this guy. The group hug with Sarich was nothing to write home about, and I’m curious to know how the scrap with Regehr happened 1 second (!) into the third and how it went down, but Regehr is on the short list of scores to settle and it would seem Zack is on the job.

    One thing that I’ve noticed out of the big guy recently is wheels on the forecheck. Yeah, I’m serious, he looks clumsy as hell but he actually gets there, and has been winning his share of races to shoot-ins lately. One play that impressed me tonight was in the second, Stortini made a good safe play to control the puck just inside the Oiler blueline, and made a crisp 8-foot pass to hit Sanderson coming out of the zone at full speed right on the tape. Sanderson was flying up the ice, Stortini had a standing start so it was hardly a fair race to say the least. Yet the big guy just busted his ass to join the rush, get all the way up the ice and into the play, and arrive at the doorstep just as the puck did to provide a screen and be in position for a rebound (which was not forthcoming for a change).

    I’m not saying Zack’s a speedster or anything, but I am saying he’s getting faster and more involved in the play. I really like the way the big guy is coming along.

  57. Bruce says:

    PS: If I were a Flames fan I would be beside myself. They just sucked. Terrible, terrible. Luckily for me, I am not, have never been and never will be a Flames fan. So I’m lovin’ it. They can shit the bed in our building just as much as they want.

    I suspect Keenan might have their attention for the rematch, though.

  58. Slipper says:

    Well, in the three Detroit games, for example, Horcoff has seen the most of Lidstrom, Rafalski, Zetterberg, and Datsyuk. Stoll gets Cleary and co. The last Detroit game, Stoll saw a fair share of his minutes against Z and D, but so did Horc, and Horc saw 5 more minutes of EV icetime.

    There’s been signifigant cases where MacTavish has made a concerted effort to run Stoll against the other team’s big hitters. At home against Pittsburgh is on obvious example. I don’t think that this is a testament to Stoll’s ability to defend though. He’s had an abysmal year offensively. As bad as it gets.

    So if a team has two signifigant offensive threats, MacT seems to package 16 as a checking line, and hope 10/83. On other occasions opposing coaches seem to want to get their best defenders against the Horcoff line aswell. MacT seems either not to mind or else is being whooped in the bench war.

    If you go by their game logs it appears theat Horcoff draws against the other team’s best offenders or best defenders, while Stoll you only see the on end of the spectrum. MacTavish’s choice no doubt, and a choice the other head coaches don’t seem to mind- and they shouldn’t since Stoll’s been terrible.

  59. Doogie says:

    I picked a hell of a day to quit watching the Oilers for the year.

    That being said, Dustin Penner…Tom Kurvers? Yeesh.

  60. Vic Ferrari says:

    slipper

    The first two DET games are outside the window that Dennis is talking about, though. No argument on the first couple of months of the season, especially when Torres was with them, the Horcoff line went power vs power a lot. Though the whole thing has been a bit of a Clutterbuck all around. Article 1 of 57: VS NSH it was pretty clear that MacTavish was wearing his bad idea jeans; favouring Penner/Stoll/Nilsson vs the Arnott line, sweet Jebus.

    If you look at the shift chart for the last game in DET it is pretty clear that MacTavish was trying to avoid the matchup with Z, and Babcock was chasing.

    For crying out loud, Horcoff’s line didn’t play until the third shift of the game. MacTavish was waiting out Babcock’s best players like Renney does for Jagr.

    Stoll’s line starts the game, but Babcock, who presumably had watched some tape, started the Franzen line and Lilya D pair. Stoll’s line comes off straight away in favour of a kid line … then Stoll’s unit starts the next shift, but still no Z (caught Datsyuk though, and a bit of Lidstrom/Rafalski, the latter both got off the ice quickly though and came back the next shift on short rest, when Horcoff’s line finally appeared to take a faceoff.

  61. Slipper says:

    Vic

    You’d be making a pretty good case for Stoll playing tough minutes, if at any time I was contesting that. I don’t think I was.

    Dennis simply stated Ferraro was lying when he said Horcoff plays tough minutes, and I don’t think he was. It might be a semantics battle since I don’t think the TV guys lexicon contain the same definitions for the terms used on these blogs.

    Horcoff plays far too many minutes against the entire field to argue that he’s sheltered. Since no other Oilers line outscores the lightweights, I can see why Babcock wants to put his amazing two up against the Oilers top two. Yet even when Stoll’s playing a greater percentage of his minutes against Zetterberg, the final tally is 6.4 minutes against for 10, and 6.7 MA for 16.

    For me, the fact that the other 8-12 minutes a game Horc sees on most nights is against the Pahllsons, Prongers and Footes of the NHL isn’t something to bat an eyelash at.

  62. Dennis says:

    The way I remember Ferraro stating it, seemed to indicate that Horc was the primary centre vs the other team’s top lines all the time and that’s not the case.

    And especially not at home when MacT has a better chance at calling the shots.

    Anyway, could be more of a case of how I heard it or Ferraro not making himself clear enough for my liking.

    In other news, does David Staples-Lowe-Babcock really believe there are people out there that want the Oilers to lose more than they do to win, ie his dreaded Lowe-lynchers?

    I doubt anyone dislikes Lowe as a GM more than I do and I didn’t give much for him before ’06 either. That being said, I don’t remember spiraling into a paint-drinking depression once the team went on that run, either.

  63. Slipper says:

    Holy Christ.

    Was it not enough to create new “stats” to support his fave GM, or latest fan boy crush?

    Dennis, I wonder if it would make a difference if you were polite when making the case of how incompetent Lowe’s proven to be?

    It’s not like we make this stuff up.

    Repeatedly betting the house on single time 20+ goal scorers.

    Trading Pronger for peanuts.

    Giving Lupul the keys to the penthouse.

    Securing the bottom six and a 36 year old goaltender before signing the team’s top left winger.

    Trying to commit franchise suicide with the Vanek offer.

    Possibly commiting said suicide, only slower and more painfully, by following it up with the Penner/Souray deals.

    “Whoa, golly-jeez, we’ve gotta lot of defencemen here!”

    So he gave Burke the Stanley Cup one season and follows it up with a lottery pick.

    Yeah, we’re all just pessimists.

  64. Vic Ferrari says:

    slipper said:

    Dennis simply stated Ferraro was lying when he said Horcoff plays tough minutes, and I don’t think he was.

    Fair enough, I wish I’d realized that before I typed that essay.

    .

    Dennis:

    I’ll bite. What’s the Lowe-lynchers thing about?

  65. Dennis says:

    Slipper: Maybe it would make a difference but I doubt it.

    I don’t call the talk shows much anymore but how long did I have to rail on Salo and how much damage he was doing to the team; both in terms of play and just how much payroll he was taking up at the time? And you know what? Of all that time I found one sympathetic/smart ear: John Short. And as much I liked Short, he wasn’t exactly mainstream by then.

    Stauffer knows sports in general but he takes every loss and uses it as a reason to build on his Fire MacT campaign. Maybe I’m missing something but I don’t remember him going nuts over Pronger, Smyth or Souray.

    And in a REAL sports city, someone would.

    And as I type this, Stauffer’s linking the Giants Super Bowl win with Lowe’s recent moves because of the way the Giants old GM made that move at the draft to move up and nab Eli Manning.

    So there you go.

    I’d like to have a go at Stauffer and I’d like to see Ty, Cam, Vic, Oilswell and a few other fellows get in a shot at him too. Throw Lain in there if he’d use his head:)

    But they don’t deal with bloggers, unless you count Duhatcshek’s suitor, so it winds up being that guys like Staples-Lowe-Babcock becomes the Face of the MSM.

    But he’s an apt rep because they’re all pretty much of the same mind

  66. Dennis says:

    Vic: It’s in one of his latest blogs, he opines that there are some fans that would rather see the Oilers lose than win just because they don’t like Lowe and are thus Lowe-lynchers.

    It would be nice if he used our opposite term: Lowelingus:)

  67. mc79hockey says:

    And as I type this, Stauffer’s linking the Giants Super Bowl win with Lowe’s recent moves because of the way the Giants old GM made that move at the draft to move up and nab Eli Manning.

    Yeah, I find that a bit mystifying too. One’s a trade to move up in the draft, the other was to get a 25 year old. Mysterious stuff.

    Spector though, good on him – he just said that 13th won’t be good enough next year. I’m not at all sure how these guys think it will be better next year – maybe they’re healthier, maybe they don’t get 13 SO wins…but at least there’s some indication that the media knows that the end of the road has to come at some point.

  68. Dennis says:

    Spector seemed to say he thought Lowe needed to be better Next year, while Stauffer was going with the old couple of years time.

    I still think it’s 2010 before we see the playoffs again. And all that depends on if Horc comes back beyond ’09.

    And I think that’s in doubt given Horc’s injury. I suspect a scnario where Lowe, either in front of the masses or behind closed doors, brings up Horc’s penchant for injury in both ’06 and ’08 and in the process throws out the old Lowe ball.

    Horc balks and is dealt.

    I just hope that if that’s what Combover McGee intends, he holds the Horc auction in the June of ’08 rather than Feb of ’09.

    I just wouldn’t be shocked if Horc’s played his last game as an Oiler.

  69. Steve says:

    I’m not at all sure how these guys think it will be better next year – maybe they’re healthier, maybe they don’t get 13 SO wins…

    I’m a serial optimist, so I’m probably wrong about this, but the way I look at it…

    2008-2009 Oilers who we can reasonably expect to take a step forward

    Hemsky
    Penner
    Gagner
    Cogliano
    Pitkanen (one hopes he’s an Oiler)
    Gilbert
    Smid
    Grebeshkov
    Nilsson

    2008-2009 Oilers who we can reasonably expect to take a step back

    Roloson
    Staios

    2008-2009 Oilers who we can reasonable expect to play at a similar level to this year

    Garon
    Souray
    Torres
    Stoll
    Horcoff
    Glencross
    Moreau
    Pisani

    Am I missing anybody? Am I being overly-optimistic on anybody? I’m not saying all the guys in the first list will take a step forward, but it at least seems reasonable to believe that none of them will take a step back.

  70. Steve says:

    To add to that, this should theoretically mean that we improve if we replace Reasoner and Sanderson with similar players, which should be doable (they’re not huge skates that need filling) and, given similar luck, the team should perform better, no?

    (As for the luck, I think our injury luck has been freakishly bad enough to mostly offset the freakishly good shootout luck we’ve had, especially since you really can’t deny that part of our shootout luck has been attributable to Garon’s mastery of them, and not just simple felicity.)

  71. Slipper says:

    Interesting fun fact of the day:

    Dan Cleary has as many even strength goals(14) this season as Nilsson(4), Torres(4), Gagner(4) and Stoll(4) combined.

    In fact, if I added properly, Cleary, Hudler and Filppula have as many combined goals(33) as all Oilers forwards not named Horcoff or Hemsky.

    Another laugher, for the hell of it:

    Staios is tied with Reasoner for fifth in EV scoring with 5 goals.

    All the talking heads can lecture the masses on pucking moving defencemen, one shot scorers, and head coaches who promote offence as the magic elixr to cure the Oilers woes. Maybe just a little value and, well, decent hockey players in the 4-9 forward slot, might do the trick.

  72. Bruce says:

    Serial Optimist Steve wondered:

    Am I missing anybody?

    Zack Stortini, who we (I ?) can reasonably expect to take a step (or two) forward;

    Matt Greene, who we (I ?) can reasonably expect to take a step forward.

    And you thought you were a serial optimist.

  73. godot10 says:

    //And as I type this, Stauffer’s linking the Giants Super Bowl win with Lowe’s recent moves because of the way the Giants old GM made that move at the draft to move up and nab Eli Manning.//

    The Giants didn’t move up in the draft to nab Manning.

    San Diego drafted Manning #1, and Eli pulled a Pronger (or more accurately, an Elway), refusing to sign with San Diego. Manning wanted to go to New York, so the Giants drafted Rivers to be able to make the trade for Manning when it became clear to San Diego that Manning would not sign with them under any circumstances.

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