Oilers at Hawks, G5/08-09

This is an SI from a long time ago featuring the patented hockey smile of a warrior (in this case the late, great Keith Magnuson who is also pictured on right).

The Hawks of my childhood were a strong, strong team. Maybe like Colorado now (or over the last 10 seasons). They had Tony Esposito in goal, a quality blueline led by Magnuson, Pat Stapleton and Bill White and a forward group that was among the best in the league–Stan Mikita, Bobby Hull, Jim Pappin, Dennis Hull and many others.

They were a terrific team and one of the “group of 4″ from the late 60s/early 70s who had a chance to win every season (Habs & Bruins, Rangers & Hawks).

These days they’re a team on the rise and currently with a brand new coach in Joel Quenneville. The firing of Denis Savard has received a lot of play but it’s my opinion that Chicago upgraded with a coach who ranks among the 10 best in the business.

Chicago’s arrows are all pointed in the right direction. My guess is an L for the Oildrop in Chi-town tonight.

Why? Despite the quality kids and the increased number of NHL veterans on this year’s Oilers team, my guess is that they are not an elite team. 4-0 teams who are not elite level wander back to the median.

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225 Responses to "Oilers at Hawks, G5/08-09"

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  1. grease trap says:

    Gotta say, though, ever since avoiding a check and failing to get the puck out last year and being solidly booed for it, Nilsson’s been fearless in his own end.

  2. Coach pb9617 says:

    Nilsson and Smid are the only two that I don’t skate until they vomit tomorrow.

  3. Jonathan says:

    You know, with that Schremp pick, the Oilers could have taken Dave Bolland. Just saying.

  4. Quain says:

    You guys better be nicer to the players or I’m gonna tells the PR department on you.

  5. grease trap says:

    Good thing about watching the game in a pub, losing don’t hurt so much by the end of the third. So long folks.

  6. Jonathan says:

    Nilsson and Smid are the only two that I don’t skate until they vomit tomorrow.

    Before or after the game against the Avs?

  7. doritogrande says:

    And the earliest candidate for least deserving shutout goes to….

    Glad I didn’t shell out 12 bucks for this game. Ales Hemsky was just horrible to watch for 50 minutes tonight. He made everyone on his line a lesser player tonight.

  8. mike w says:

    Three years ago Dave Bolland was 165 lbs. These things are calculated risks…

  9. Black Dog says:

    they played like a team that’s been reading their press clippings

    and nine of the next ten on the road

    tough row, better settle down and get back at it

  10. Julian says:

    three years ago, how many people would have said Dave Bolland would have an NHL career before Rob Schremp?

  11. Dennis says:

    Well — if for nothing else — tomorrow night will be a good early test just to see how much resolve and determination this team has.

    Will they be content with their 4-0 start and thus not really come out jamming tomorrow night? Or, will they be pissed off by this and really come out hard tomorrow night.

    We’ll know what we’ll get from Col: balance all around and trouble from the Smyth-Hemsky-Stastny line and hopefully some bad netminding:)

    But how will the Oilers fare?

  12. Coach pb9617 says:

    Before or after the game against the Avs?

    I was thinking about that, I think before.

  13. Black Dog says:

    3-2 Phils with 2 down in the bottom of the 8th

    Rays win will mean a WS, a Cup and a Super Bowl all in six years

    I lived there for 3 years and outside of football nobody gives a shit about pro sports

    Go Phils.

  14. Bruce says:

    How much did the Oilers charge for PPV tonight? I feel ripped off enough just wasting my time on that piece of shit.

    That steal I noticed from Pouliot late in the 2nd was Oilers’ only takeaway in the entire fucking game. I know it’s a bogus stat, but tonight that bogus stat underlines a Bogus effort.

    There’s an old baseball line that goes 50 games you’re going to win no matter what you do, 50 you’re going to lose no matter what you do. Winning the pennant depends on how well you play in the other 62 games.

    I know which column this puppy is in

    Good call, LT.

  15. goldenchild says:

    well that was god aweful

  16. doritogrande says:

    “We’ll know what we’ll get from Col: balance all around and trouble from the Smyth-Hemsky-Stastny line and hopefully some bad netminding:)”

    So Dennis, what chu been drinking tonight?

  17. Jonathan says:

    three years ago, how many people would have said Dave Bolland would have an NHL career before Rob Schremp?

    That’s the point. Four years of my life without having to listen to constant updates about a perpetually one-dimensional prospect.

  18. spOILer says:

    Hawks pressured the puck carrier all over the ice tonight, giving us fits. We can expect more of the same from the Avs if the first game was any indication.

    Bruce: that is a bogus takeaway stat. Brodz had at least two himself in the third.

  19. spOILer says:

    Some pretty wacky TOI stats tonight.

    Pouliot with more ice time than Pisani, Penner, Moreau. Gagner with far more PK time than aforementioned specialists. Horc with virtually no PK time—Hemmer had more. Brodz’ total TOI up a bit.

  20. kinger says:

    We were way too loose defensively and I would have preferred to see more dump and chase (Chi was killing our rushes by standing up on the blue line).

    I thought we played well in the third, but Chicago did a good job limiting chances (not such a hard thing to do with a 3 goal lead).

    I still see a lot of problems with chemistry that aren’t being addressed (26 on the top line, 44-71, 27 showing very little with 18-34).

    83 had an off game, but more troubling to me is the lack of offense 26-10-83 have generated at ES.

  21. Dennis says:

    DG: I don’t drink as much as I used to;) and at least I got the fact right that both guys start with the letter “H”;)

  22. Vic Ferrari says:

    What Kinger said. Granted I just saw the third.

    The Hawks postgame show guys were flattering to the Blackhawks I think. The Oilers just couldn’t put two passes together and couldn’t win two puck battles in a row.

    And with the Hawks sitting on the lead like that why the hell were the Oilers insisting on trying to carry the puck over the blue line every damn time? Did the coaches say nothing? Jebus.

    If Hemsky is hurt, we should worry. If Hemsky isn’t hurt, we should worry more.

    You hope that an embarrassing loss like that wakes some guys up, so maybe they leave some marks on the boards tomorrow night. But I dunno, the Oilers could be in for an ass kicking tomorrow night.

    Then again, the Avs goaltending gives everyone a chance to win any game. Happy thoughts. :) Plus they are 4-1.

  23. Lord Bob says:

    Did somebody run over Hemsky’s dog or something?

    Jesus Christ.

  24. Doogie2K says:

    Of course, that is the only team in NHL history to start a season 10-0.

    2006-07 Buffalo Sabres did it, too, and won the President’s Trophy.

    if Sourey is hurt and we are playing him, it is because we have a third goalie eating a roster spot

    If anything, the third goalie blocks a F spot, not a D. We’re at 13-7-3.

    If your offer me 4 and 1 at the beginning of the season I will take it. However, this team scares me right now. Their best players are not their best.

    Didn’t see the game at all (I was busy watching some 16-year-old kid be shaky in net instead of some 39-year-old geezer), but that certainly rings true for a number of important guys. Scorcoff’s been up and down, Hemsky’s been shit, Gilbert and Visnovsky have been an adventure at times…at least Garon’s mostly been good, as has the kids line (esp. Nilsson).

    Ales Hemsky = Alexei Kovalev

    always leaves you wanting more

    When he’s “on,” you wonder how there could be a better player; when he’s “off,” you wonder how there could be a worse player.

    I don’t drink as much as I used to;) and at least I got the fact right that both guys start with the letter “H”;)

    And here I thought that was an intended dig at Hemsky’s braindead giveaways. :)

  25. Bruce says:

    2006-07 Buffalo Sabres did it, too, and won the President’s Trophy.

    Right you are, Doogie, I forgot about that winning*** streak, and obviously the Google search I did dated back to before that. Funny, in the internal record book sometimes it’s the most recent stuff that slips past.
    (*** included 3 shootout “wins”)

    Their best players are not their best.

    I read that as “their highest-paid players are not their best” which is true at all times but especially just now. The entire first unit (10-26-83-44-71) are minus players, and several of them are struggling to put it politely.

    //Ales Hemsky = Alexei Kovalev
    always leaves you wanting more//
    When he’s “on,” you wonder how there could be a better player; when he’s “off,” you wonder how there could be a worse player.

    When he’s “on” Hemmer makes it look so easy that one expects more even in those, his good games, while raising expectations generally. When he’s floating around like he was last night, lost in his own end, causing offsides in the neutral zone and coughing the puck inside the opposition’s blueline, he just drives me batshit.

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