Canucks at Oilers, G28/08-09

The uniforms were awful but Thomas Gradin was a fine player. He was a star for Sweden in early World Junior Championships and an instant success in the NHL.

His high water mark with the Canucks was the 1982 Hail Mary run to the Stanley which was in no way similar to the 1994 Stanley experience. In 1994 Vancouver was a heartbeat away from winning it all, but in 1982 they won the right to be lambs for the slaughter.

Any review of the 1982 season shows Gradin was a champion no matter the result.

Tonight we may be looking at one of the final 4 this NHL season. The Canucks seem to have the right combination of grit, skill and goaltending to go deep into the post-season and with rumors of a huge acquisition (possibly Sundin) straight ahead it’s long past time to give the Canucks and their new GM credit. I questioned the lack of moves in the summer but clearly this is a team that is well built and headed in the right direction.

For Oilers fans we’re probably a couple of weeks away from the point where we can safely begin talking about the June draft. As of this morning, Edmonton is close to 8th but also close to 15th, which in the Kevin Lowe “Groundhog Day” era smells a lot like poetic justice. The Edmonton Oilers since 2000 have been a study in what happens when you leave the terminal out of balance.

Stories surrounding the Canucks have them filling holes credibly, winning games and performing well in all kinds of areas. Winning organizations do that sort of things, the Canucks coverage isn’t terribly different these days than what you’d find in San Jose, Detroit or Calgary newspapers. Address need, move forward, fill holes.

Good for the Canucks. They endured a lot of turmoil for many years when the team lacked leadership, direction and talent and saw their management group unable to right the ship by addressing need. For Oilers fans we can look forward to Hemsky, Lubo and a script that involves a crazy ride that will test patience and run the gamut of emotion. The Edmonton Oilers are not good for the blood pressure.

And if the Oilers are going to make a run, tonight would be a good time to start. I hope coach Peeters tells them that much.

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483 Responses to "Canucks at Oilers, G28/08-09"

« Older Comments
  1. J says:

    hmm im sundin and i could play in the butter soft east, or the toughest division in hockey. seeing as sundin is soft as fuck by nature im sure you can make your own conclusion

  2. Coach pb9617 says:

    2. Chorney, Peckham, and Wild have definitely passed Smid.

    Hehe. Grebs hasn’t passed Smid.

  3. HBomb says:

    Sundin will have a hat trick that night. His first official game with the Canucks. You heard it here first, hehehe.

    You seriously think Sundin isn’t going to “Forsberg” it and stretch this drama out as long as possible?

    There’s gotta be a rule added about how long this UFA dance can continue (i.e. if a guy isn’t signed by December 1st, he’s ineligible to play the season).

  4. J says:

    find another bridge nucks troll

  5. danny says:

    Vic is a big picture guy…

    I remember waaaaaaaay back after the lockout ended and EDM got their salary cap. Vic posed the question how long until the media frenzy are set loose on a new Arena.

    It just happened.

  6. HBomb says:

    find another bridge nucks troll

    Be nice now – Temujin is a good cat.

    Now that “Billy” guy who posts on BDHS’s blog….THAT is a Canuck fan-troll.

    Big difference.

    Temujin – can you reccomend a good Vancouver Canuck blog that I could add to my bookmarks? I’ve got FiveHoleFanatics for the Flames and would like some left-coast perspective.

  7. J says:

    all nhl mash up wowwww

  8. J says:

    alain got out everythinged with herb and garlic cream cheese

  9. danny says:

    To follow up that post,

    I mean… Katz can afford a new iceplant. Thats not an issue, ive been sitting patiently wondering why it isnt happening.

    much like the Penner knee, you plant seeds and let things grow until its prominent on HNIC.

    You now have a large group of voters wondering wtf is happening.

    Table is set.

  10. Bruce says:

    Mark Lee and Marc Crawford, Scott Oake and P.J. Stock. CBC needs to hold a talent contest.

    Crawford is truly dreadful.

  11. Lowetide says:

    With Smid’s emergence (and he has played well) I’d think Grebeshkov may be the guy in a spot of bother. The Oilers might be able to offload Staios at the deadline (or possibly in the summer) but sooner than later a guy like Peckham is going to knock down the door.

    Looking at the EV minutes tonight on D:

    1. Lubo 16:40
    2. Gilbert 15:36
    3. Souray 15:20
    4. Grebeshkov 15:00
    5. Smid 14:46
    6. Staios 14:10

    I don’t recall the last game when they rolled at EVs like they did tonight. 1-2-3, 1-2-3, 1-2-3. It was square dancing all evening.

  12. Loxy says:

    Hbomb.. http://canuckshockeyblog.com/ is a good one. JJ who runs it seems like a good guy – friend of a friend.

    Also.. My record while watching the Oil is now 10-3.

  13. HBomb says:

    Patrick Marleau is playing LW for Joe Thornton and is having a career season. Coincidence? I don’t think so.

    Considering they’ve got the center depth with Pavelski for line 2 and Goc for line 3, smart, smart move by the Sharks coaching staff there.

  14. Lowetide says:

    Loxy: You have to watch every game, rest of the season. No exceptions.

  15. HBomb says:

    Loxy: The Oilers are now 1-0 with me wearing my new Horcoff jersey. So far, so good.

  16. danny says:

    Oake pumps Trail, and Tambo inclusively ignores Horcoffs origins.

  17. Loxy says:

    Lowetide – I watch as many as I can get! I was kicking myself when I wasn’t able to watch the last Oil-Canucks tilt.

  18. Billy says:

    Now that “Billy” guy who posts on BDHS’s blog….THAT is a Canuck fan-troll.

    H-bomb. Not sure what upset yah, but whatever. I still like readin your perspective, cause as devoid of reality as it is sometimes, its still pure entertainment.

    Hehe, pretty funny. Don’t usually post here, but I had to come see what Oil fans saw in the game. Vancouver was terrible and deserved the loss.

  19. PDO says:

    HBomb:

    Good thing he hit the Oilers -1.5 +a million just as hard. Fuckin rights :D

    Why do the GM’s of this team always look tired as fuck? Surely they don’t have the same fucking ADD problems our fanbase does? RIGHT?! RIGHT!?

  20. Lowetide says:

    Tambellini sounds like an accountant.

  21. HBomb says:

    H-bomb. Not sure what upset yah, but whatever. I still like readin your perspective, cause as devoid of reality as it is sometimes, its still pure entertainment.

    The Comrie/Gagner comparison. That alone is enough to earn you said label.

    My perspective is well based in reality, and it was affirmed tonight. The Vancouver Canucks are NOTHING without Roberto Luongo. They make the playoffs, that guy should get the Hart trophy.

  22. danny says:

    Tambellini just referred to Lowe/Katz’s vision of what needs to happen with “not only the team, but also the city”

    We can convinently infer that Lowes promotion was to handle the arena front.

    Lowe definitely bought bagels for a few select CBC employees earlier today.

  23. J says:

    tambos 5 day meth binge bags under his eyes

  24. Lowetide says:

    The three of them look like a scene from Hee-Haw.

  25. danny says:

    Ugh. Now it makes sense.

    Tambo is a former PR guy.

  26. HBomb says:

    The three of them look like a scene from Hee-Haw.

    I’ve always noticed a stunning resemblance between Crawford and Emilio Estevez in “Mighty Ducks 2″.

    It’s kind of creepy, actually.

  27. Loxy says:

    Dear CBC,

    Do not hire Marc Crawford back in ANY capacity.

    Thank you,
    Me.

  28. J says:

    emmiiiiilllllliiiiooooo

  29. RiversQ says:

    That was a solid game from the Oilers tonight. The last ten min of the first was their only stretch of bad play and it was mostly harmless stuff.

    Ideally Gagner, Cogliano and Nilsson all play less minutes on this team but I don’t really see a second line anywhere to fill the void in the top six. This is a team with a top three and a bottom nine and they will have matchup problems routinely. Maybe Cole, Pisani, and a new centre would give you a real 2nd line but until that happens this team will have some trouble IMO.

    Lastly, I’ve thought Staios has looked decent for the last couple of weeks. Some of that is Smid but I fear a lot more of it is Strudwick.

  30. Bruce says:

    I think that’s the first time I’ve seen Tambellini smile since he got the job.

  31. danny says:

    Nice answer on the 3-headed goalie situation.

  32. Lowetide says:

    Where’s Tambellini sleeping? The Forum Inn? He looks awful.

  33. Coach pb9617 says:

    Yea, Gagner is young. On the other hand he’s not getting results, and our second scoring line isn’t doing alot of scoring. If you are interested in winning hockey games that can’t really persist.

    This is what I’ve been saying since the first blind drop pass.

  34. HBomb says:

    RiversQ: I think once Pisani gets back, if they can get Cole up with Cogliano and Gagner and then roll out a fourth line built around Nilsson/Pouliot, they’ll be better off.

    But if they’re hoping to do anything in the playoffs, they’re going to need to find a veteran center.

    The Islanders might be the first to start selling – why has Mike Sillinger only played five games? That might be a good fit…..

  35. Lowetide says:

    And what I’m saying is the ship has already sailed on Gagner. If my choices are buggering up the kid and making the playoffs or playing him, having him get through this and become a better player on the other side but missing the playoffs, I take door #2.

    And I said the exact same thing when we were discussing Hemsky over at HF. Sometimes, just sometimes, the talent is great enough that you do make special rules.

  36. HBomb says:

    Actually, to be honest, the trade that might work with the Islanders, considering LW depth is a bit of an issue, might be Schremp or Pouliot for the GM’s son…..hmmmm…..

  37. Lowetide says:

    Tambellini’s kid was a pretty good player last time I looked, what’s he doing this season?

  38. HBomb says:

    And what I’m saying is the ship has already sailed on Gagner. If my choices are buggering up the kid and making the playoffs or playing him, having him get through this and become a better player on the other side but missing the playoffs, I take door #2.

    Bingo. Why sacrifice development of a guy who could very well be a top-20 NHL center in order to be San Jose or Detroit’s first-round punching bag?

  39. HBomb says:

    Tambellini’s kid was a pretty good player last time I looked, what’s he doing this season?

    23 GP, 0G, 2A, -9

    That’s the stat-line of a guy that probably could be had for “not a whole heck of a lot”.

  40. HBomb says:

    Even Kyle Okposo, a guy who some mags had tagged as a possible Calder candidate, he’s 2G-3A, -6 in 18 games.

    The Islanders have screwing up good young prospects down to a friggin’ science, it seems. It wasn’t JUST Ted Nolan, apparently….

  41. Lowetide says:

    Tambellini the younger didn’t make much progress with coach Nolan and looks like he’s been passed on by the new coach too.

    Islanders have a history of making mistakes on kids, though.

  42. HBomb says:

    Jebus, did Tambellini just use the term “porno moustache” on national TV?

    Brilliant.

  43. Lowetide says:

    Damn HBomb, those are similar posts.

  44. Temujin says:

    HBomb: My buddy has a good Nucks blog at hockey-madness.blogspot.com I’d be remiss if I didn’t point you in that direction. Lots of hilarious photoshops, fresh content all the time, and colorful invective too!

    And Mike at YankeeCanuck.com always seems to have something interesting to say.

    Shamefully, the Nuckosphere is lagging ten miles behind the Oilogosphere, imo.

  45. HBomb says:

    Tambellini the younger didn’t make much progress with coach Nolan and looks like he’s been passed on by the new coach too.

    Islanders have a history of making mistakes on kids, though.

    Ok, Schremp plus what equals Sillinger and Tambellini? I think there’s an obvious fit here, especially considering the Oilers and Islanders have done business before….

    Hell, Doug Weight’s got 27 points. Could he fit with Cole and Moreau on a secondary tough minutes line?

  46. HBomb says:

    Shamefully, the Nuckosphere is lagging ten miles behind the Oilogosphere, imo.

    At least you’ve got a good name. It’s a start.

    Tom Benjamin’s technically a Canuck’s guy, right? He’s pretty top-drawer with some of his stuff.

  47. Lowetide says:

    Tambellini and Sillinger, eh? I saw Sillinger as a Regina Pat and he’s played in every other NHL city so why not?

    How about one of the D prospects? Schremp and Chorney for Sillinger and Tambellini?

    Or Reddox might work.

  48. HBomb says:

    Damn HBomb, those are similar posts.

    I know. Creepy, eh?

    What “type” of player is Jeff T anyways? Could he play the Glencross role on a 4th line with, say, Nilsson and one of Brodziak/Pouliot?

    I remember you doing a post on him awhile back….might be time for another one. Possibly because it seems like such an obvious fit.

  49. Temujin says:

    In fact, a lot of Nucks bloggers only seem to point once every two or three days. Besides Luongo and Sundin though, maybe there isn’t a lot to talk about in Canuckland (no fight over a new arena, or mind-boggling coaching decisions, line-juggling, etc)

  50. HBomb says:


    How about one of the D prospects? Schremp and Chorney for Sillinger and Tambellini?

    Done in about 2 seconds if I was GM and the Isles asked for it. Makes too much sense.

  51. Temujin says:

    Oh yeah, Benjamin is good (but there again, irregular posts).

    Loxy mentioned JJ, and yeah, he is good too. But he does a lot of “cut n paste” with guys who write for the Province and Sun. Which is good for what it’s worth, I guess. But the term “media whore” comes to mind (again, that’s not necessarily a bad thing).

  52. HBomb says:

    Lowetide: thanks. After re-reading this, I hope that dad decides to rescue son from prospect-hell on Long Island.

    Schremp for Tambellini makes sense. If the deal was expanded to include Sillinger, even better.

  53. slipper says:

    5 shots, plus 2, drew a penalty, scored a goal and dominated the game.

    Some of you must have wagered money on the three stars?

    Also, Sundin is awesome and Cole is easily 8 times the player that Stortini is. I wouldn’t worry about who’s earning what, because at the moment, 46 is lucky to be drawing an NHL pay cheque.

    Fun Fact:
    Gagner played the most EV minutes amongst forwards at 12.9 minutes. Henrik Sedin played 11.5 EV minutes for Vancouver.

    Gagner vs Sedin: 1.1 head to head minutes.

  54. Steve says:

    I think that’s the first time I’ve seen Tambellini smile since he got the job.

    I think that’s the first time I’ve seen Tambellini since he got the job.

  55. jon k says:

    As an interesting tidbit, Horcoff is from Castlegar, not Trail as his bios always state.

    I met an interesting guy on Christina Lake who apparently knew the Horcoffs and had some interesting stories to tell.

  56. Lowetide says:

    Steve I swear you make me laugh every time you post.

  57. Coach pb9617 says:

    Stars tonight:

    3. Lubo Lubovsky
    2. Ladi Smid
    1. Sheldon Souray

  58. Lowetide says:

    Horcoff and Brodziak lines got the Sedins and Souray-Gilbert drew the assignment defensively.

    Anyone want to offer opinions about Smid’s abiliy to step up a pairing to the Lubo shuffle?

  59. J says:

    horcoffs parents musta been circus folk

  60. HBomb says:

    slipper: Jesus Christ, +11 Corsi from Horcoff?

    Ok, I wasn’t just seeing things when I thought he was having a great game.

    Here’s an interesting one for debate: do you take a) Horcoff and Hemsky and their combined 9.6 million dollar cap hit (starting next season), or b) the Sedins at what will likely be WELL north of 10 million (I’m thinking they both ask for 5.5 million minimum)?

  61. Black Dog says:

    Christmas party with the family and best of the season to you, friends.

    Just to prove to you that I am still somewhat sober and have read this whole damn thing, though I did not see the game.

    HBomb – if I ever drank with you they would carry me out in a bucket, pal, but beer and red wine, pal, beer and red wine ;)

    Loxy – nice to “see” you about again, we miss you around here. Or a least I do.

    LT – you’re too old to be so hormonal, my god man ;) although usually when your moon is in Aquarius then the Oilers start to play well.

    So keep it up or should I say, down ;)

  62. Black Dog says:

    Also, PDO – one of my best friends does exactly that – eats completely healthy to balance the poisons he pours into his body otherwise.

    He’s my age (41 this week) and looks better then he did at 20, the bastard.

  63. Black Dog says:

    And finally up Smid as a regular and fuck you Canucks.

    Lets go Oilers.

    Yowza.

  64. HBomb says:

    BDHS: If you EVER come back to Edmonton, we’re having a cocktail party at Chez HBomb.

    Me, you, my ball hockey teammate Grabia and we’ll invite Lowetide too (would I EVER like to drink a few pints with THE man himself).

    I’ll even make sure the fridge is well stocked with beer in case my hard alcohol inventions aren’t tickling your fancy.

    Best part? I’m a five minute walk to either the Empress Ale House or the bar known as the Black Dog.

  65. slipper says:

    The shifts were sorta skewed due to the lopsided special teams. It’s still notable that Smid was tied with Vish for most even strength minutes, with 14.8, and came out +3 in shots and corsi.

    Though the Oilers had quite a few powerplays and Smid doesn’t skate on those, yet he was only put out on the ice for a single shift after the powerplay. There might be an insight in that into how much faith the coach currently has in Smid.

  66. doritogrande says:

    H-bomb:

    Go out now, while you still have limited motor control, and buy 7-11 out of powerade. If you’ve consumed as much alcohol as I believe you have tonight, dear christ you’re going to need the electrolytes. Hilariously entertaining shit from you tonight otherwise. You’d be a guy that’d teach me a lot if I ever had the chance to wake up hugging your toilet.

    I caught bits and pieces of the game in between frames at the local bowling alley (christmas party date for Dr. Dad). Saw the Hemsky goal and proceeded to drop jaw. Saw the Nilsson goal and almost caused the table to topple. Saw the Brodziak fight and thought “Oh dear christ, where is someone to stand in for this man?!” Kyle should NOT have to fight a Shane O’Brien in his lifetime, but the kid’s got some balls.

    On the NYI procurement: They’ve had some uber fuckups in the past, but they got something right this year. This Bailey kid can flat out play. And considering how many additional picks they accumulated by trading down (twice!), this should be respected for the home-run it is. They also do not need to draft a goalie for the next decade. Pretty smart on their part.

    I just can’t get a read on this team anymore. They’re beating teams they have no right to, and are being beaten by the LA Kings the very next day. Someone should invent the Oilers version of AA, because as much as this is messing with my brain (during exam period it should be properly noted), I can’t kick the habit.

  67. Bruce says:

    Cole is easily 8 times the player that Stortini is.

    Slipper: I wasn’t saying Stortini = Cole, I was just saying that you don’t have to pay $4 MM for a guy who “tries hard”. Erik needs to start lighting the lamp.

    As for Hemsky dominating, I think we must watch the game differently. I watched the team play 2:32 at 5v3 and muster one (weak) shot, and I saw them go 0-for-8 on the powerplay with barely a threat, and I watched Hemmer cough the puck and cause offsides and get frustrated, and then I saw him score a nice goal on a 3-on-1that made up for all that, but dominant? Nuh-uh, not to me. Seems to me Ales has really struggled at Rexall this year for some reason; he’s been much better on the road. Is it the bad ice?

    I’m with Coach, tonight was a defencemen’s game. Souray was in a snarly mood and deposited at least half a dozen Canucks on their ass, really set the tone. He and Gilbert had a solid night, esp. on the PK. Smid had a strong night and Staios looked comfortable with him. The whole unit played well, even Grebs posted a +2 despite a couple of dicey moments.

  68. PDO says:

    Also, PDO – one of my best friends does exactly that – eats completely healthy to balance the poisons he pours into his body otherwise.

    Holy shit it works long term.

    I’m set for life.

  69. Bill Needle says:

    “why has Mike Sillinger only played five games? That might be a good fit”
    Sillinger had off-season hip surgery and only made it back a couple of weeks ago. He missed tonight’s game with due to a “groin.” But I agree he would be a good fit, and after he went -3 in that shellacking of the Isles earlier this week, I figure he’s gonna go somewhere.

  70. Asiaoil says:

    Smid-Lubo is the magic combination…a smaller guy with fantastic skills matched with the emerging big guy who can handle the defensive side of things. Souray and Gilbert is the other main pair. If we can trade Grebs and Staios for a cheaper solid 3rd pair dman and a good 3rd line center with PK skills I’m delighted from the perspective of need and cap.

  71. Shawn says:

    re: Horcoff

    He’s from Castlegar but was born in Trail’s hospital from what I understand. His dad was a senior hockey player and is a teacher in Castlegar. He taught my girlfriend and is actually one of her favourite teachers. They live on a big property right on the edge of town and just like a minute from where I live. Never met Mr. Horcoff though. Met Shawn, but only in a journalistic capacity.

    Horcoff did play for the Trail Smoke Eaters though. He has strong connections to both places. But he identifies himself as from Castlegar.

  72. Coach pb9617 says:

    I’m with Coach, tonight was a defencemen’s game. Souray was in a snarly mood and deposited at least half a dozen Canucks on their ass, really set the tone. He and Gilbert had a solid night, esp. on the PK. Smid had a strong night and Staios looked comfortable with him. The whole unit played well, even Grebs posted a +2 despite a couple of dicey moments.

    And I’m just fine with this. I’m still amazed that the defense never let the Sedins cycle. Once.

  73. Coach pb9617 says:

    Even with that gap-toothed jackass on the roster, the Sedins cycled against the Oil and caused headaches.

  74. Lord Bob says:

    I was at a Christmas party with a bunch of Canucks fans at work today, and the big screen at the bar was broken. I got to walk over to the little screen, see the score, walk back, smile, and say how much the Oilers were winning by.

    Gooooooooood times.

    Then it snowed. Like, real, proper, Alberta-wouldn’t-be-ashamed-of-it snow. Good day to be an Oilers fan in Victoria.

  75. HBomb says:

    Three fun facts this morning:

    1) HBomb is not hung-over. Sweet.

    2) The San Jose Sharks are currently on pace for 137 points when accounting for the home-road split in their schedule. Ridiculous that they’ve played 18 home games and have earned 34 points out of a possible 36.

    6) Of the Oilers last 40 games of the season, six of them are against their divisional rivals from Minnesota. Hard to believe the Oilers don’t see the Wild until game 43 of the season….

  76. slipper says:

    Even with that gap-toothed jackass on the roster…

    Stortini?

    BTW, that was pretty handsome charge from behind 46 tried to pull of with eight and a half minutes remaining. How this guy was given a three year contract while Glencross was left out in the cold in the summer is beyond baffling.

  77. Schitzo says:

    Hbomb: There was one minipack this year that had the wild twice in one month. Not surprisingly, it wsa still available long after all the others had sold out :D

  78. bookie says:

    I vote Pete Peeters for Coach of the Year. It obvious that he is the man that can motivate the Oilers

  79. HBomb says:

    Hbomb: There was one minipack this year that had the wild twice in one month. Not surprisingly, it wsa still available long after all the others had sold out :D

    I split season tickets five ways with family, and I ended up with one of the three Wild games this year.

    Fortunately, it’s on a Saturday night, so I can drink heavily to make things more interesting and not have to worry about the bothersome task of going to work the next day.

  80. hunter1909 says:

    LOL at whoever is writing off Gagner.

  81. Black Dog says:

    hbomb – I’ll take you up that although it may be a few years down the road

    are you playing ball hockey with Grabia? are his hands as good as he says? ;)

    and the fact that you are not hung over after drinking that mess proves one again that youth is king.

    you bastards! ;)

  82. HBomb says:

    hbomb – I’ll take you up that although it may be a few years down the road

    are you playing ball hockey with Grabia? are his hands as good as he says? ;)

    and the fact that you are not hung over after drinking that mess proves one again that youth is king.

    you bastards! ;)

    Grabia’s been playing defense lately, so it’s tough to tell. He did have one game earlier in the season where he scored one goal but probably could have had three. So between his ability to switch positions and inability to finish some of the time, he’s Strudwickian. I’m more Smid-like….I can play forward or defense, but I can’t finish period and am currently trying to develop a dirty element to my game.

    As for avoiding hangovers, a) I always make sure to drink plenty of water alongside whatever booze is flowing, and b) it’s a lot easier to look past any aches and pains the day after an Oiler win.

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