Oilers at Wild, G43/08-09

This is Glen Sather as a Boston Bruin. Sather was a marginal player by NHL standards. He never scored 20 goals in a pro season, not even in the minor leagues (highs of 19 in 1964 for Memphis Wings and 1976 for Edmonton).

He played a gritty, nasty game despite being 5.11, 180. Sather had more than 100pims a couple of times.

Sather could play a little, the great Habs team of the 1970s dealt for him in the mid-70′s because of his PK and checking abilities.

I think a player like Liam Reddox might end up having a career similar to Sather’s. But then again that’s the thing about these types of players: they have skill sets that are easily duplicated so luck and timing have a huge impact.

Sather wasn’t lucky all the time as a player. He skated for the Boston Bruins and the Montreal Canadiens in seasons before they won the Stanley (1969 and 1975, respectively).

Sather would have better luck as a coach and manager. The year before he played for the Oilers, Sather played for the Minnesota North Stars. During his playing career, he was often mentioned as a guy who might have a career in coaching when he hung up the skates. I sometimes wonder what would have happened if the North Stars had asked him to hang around for another season 30+ years ago.

The Minnesota Wild do not have the same balance and depth this season that we’ve come to expect, but they are still a good hockey club. Button down coach Jacques Lemaire has his no-names skating their lanes and generally making things difficult for the opposition. One thing I’ll give Minnesota is that they don’t play a bunch of kids, prefering to flush out their roster with mid-20s Euro’s who’ve learned the game or late 20s rejects from other teams who’ve failed as scorers but learned the finer points of the game and applied them in an intelligent manner.

Lots of people think the Wild are boring. I prefer calculating. They’ve spent a decade asking the hometown fans to sit on their hands because W’s will pop up with regularity. The fans have bought in and the Wild have delivered.

I suspect they’ll win a Stanley long before a few more famous and exciting teams win the honor.

The Edmonton Oilers have won their last 2 games but have very little chance of covering the bet I suggested on the weekend. Alone in 8th by the All-Star break? It is to laugh. The team’s one offensive weapon (Hemsky) is getting better but won’t be around until after the league breaks for the worst game of hockey every season (All-Star game). They caught a couple of people flat-footed and may have found another undersized wonder in Gilbert Brule but the Minnesota Wild wrap that defense around you and squeeze until everything stops moving.

The Oilers are closer to 8th than they’ve been for a couple of weeks:

  • 7th PHX 47points in 44gp
  • 8th CBJ 46points in 43gp
  • 9th MIN 45points in 42gp
  • 10th EDM 45points in 42gp
  • 11th COL 45points in 43gp

If things break right the Oilers could be inside the top 8 by Friday morning. Don’t bet the bank.

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222 Responses to "Oilers at Wild, G43/08-09"

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  1. Oilman says:

    nice start Kipper!

  2. Coach pb9617 says:

    Captain Heart-of-a-Lion

    For a minute there, I thought you were calling him Captain Beefheart. That angered me because Captain Beefheart rules. Captain Penis Head does not.

  3. Coach pb9617 says:

    He was waving Souray out – thought he heard someone say faceoff

    Holy shit.

    We should all stop commenting forever. We’ll never win now.

  4. Traktor says:

    I had the Wild by 1.5 for +200. Thanks Edmonton for not showing up.

    Edmonton lost tonight because they don’t have a 3rd line center.

  5. HBomb says:

    Time for Souray to shove Moreau out of the way like that after ripping the C off his chest.

    Moreau is in Shayne Corson territory right now. Seriously.

  6. HBomb says:

    Edmonton lost tonight because they don’t have a 3rd line center.

    That’s a big part of it. Lost 5-1, gave up four ES goals, yet the Horcoff line went +1.

    Can’t play your only veteran center for sixty minutes, and when your supposed “leader” is cornering the market on stupidity against a team that rarely blows a lead….you’re cooked.

  7. Dennis says:

    http://www.mc79hockey.com/?p=3035

    That’s how I saw it.

    HB: it was before I could follow the team every day but I believe the last straw with Corson was a game in Ana where he went nuts at the official scorer and tried to have a goal changed and in the process screwed a rookie out of a point. Maybe I’m wrong but it seems to be something I heard.

    The only way that 44 beatdown would’ve been better was if he took on 18 afterwards and injured him to the point that he couldn’t come back for the rest of the season;)

    It was impressive enough that 44 switched hands in order to administer such a thrashing but he was so calm about it after the matter. He seems like a guy that can turn it on and off.

  8. Traktor says:

    Moreau must feel like how Oates felt when he played here.

  9. Coach pb9617 says:

    O Captain! My Captain! Get off of my third line! Get onto my fourth line!

  10. HBomb says:

    Dennis: yes, that happened, there was an issue with someone getting screwed out of a point. The captaincy got stripped, and George Burnett was turfed as head coach shortly thereafter, giving way to Ron Low.

    Souray should have gone over and ripped the damn “C” off of Moreau’s chest after he finished beating the piss out of Weller. That would have been a great exclamation point.

  11. HBomb says:

    Fourth line?

    Shit, if everyone was healthy right now, I might stick Moreau in the friggin’ press-box right now.

    Penner Horcoff Hemsky
    Nilsson Gagner Cole
    Cogliano Pouliot Pisani
    Potulny Brodziak Brule

  12. Oilman says:

    Holy shit.

    We should all stop commenting forever. We’ll never win now.

    I’m here all week – try the veal.;o)

  13. Councilman Les Winan says:

    TSN had an item on That’s Hockey about Chris Clark (from WSH) being a healthy scratch, and how that must sting, being the captain and all.

    Dare to dream?

  14. Ribs says:

    Well, there were a few nice things about tonight’s game.

    The power play is looking to have some structure with a nice cycle along the boards. I don’t think they got any chances from it but at least they looked like they knew what they were doing.

    Gagner keeps getting braver and braver.

    Reddox really does look like Smyth-Lite. Seeing him swing his stick everywhere and taking impossible shots from anywhere brings back some fond memories.

    The rough stuff at the end of the game was nice to see. Souray adding another victim to his Pound List was good too.

    The bad things were pretty obvious. The defensemen were backing in way too far and ugly misques caused goals. The forwards lost too many puck battles and couldn’t get the puck past Minny’s sticks and shin pads.

    On another note, what the hell is going on in Springfield?

    Is this just a guy blowing steam because his team sucks and he’s losing cash by the moundful? Or are the Oilers going to to farm-less again?

  15. DeBakey says:

    The Falcons are sucking hind tit, again.
    The fans are cranky.

    The Oilers still own an AHL franchise.
    I heard they were talking to people in Oklahoma City about putting a team there the season after next.

  16. Coach pb9617 says:

    On another note, what the hell is going on in Springfield?

    Is this just a guy blowing steam because his team sucks and he’s losing cash by the moundful? Or are the Oilers going to to farm-less again?

    Seems like there is a match here. Send Moreau down to bring leadership and grit to a struggling team in the Falcons. Send Moreau down and bring leadership and grit to a struggling team in the Oilers.

    Everyone wins.

  17. PunjabiOil says:

    Or are the Oilers going to to farm-less again?

    Aside from goaltending, there has been little advantage in my opinion of owning an AHL team.

    A split affiliation deal like they had with the Habs made the most business sense.

  18. Bruce says:

    there was an issue with someone getting screwed out of a point. The captaincy got stripped, and George Burnett was turfed as head coach shortly thereafter, giving way to Ron Low.

    “Someone” was Jason Arnott, the young guy Corson had been assigned to mentor. Instead they qound up squabbling over a stupid scorer’s decision, and depending on whose account you believe, the two came to blows, possibly with Corson laying a beating on the young Oilers star. The team, in the midst of a “playoff run”, completely fell apart, with Corson ultimately being stripped of the “C” and George Burnett paying with his job. It was the lowest point for this Oilers fan in the 37 years of the franchise, a time when our supposed team leader was exposed as a selfish fucking Asshole and the Oilers a laughingstock.

    Fortunately, Glen Sather pulled a rabbit out of his hat by dumping Corson on Mike Keenan and the Blues, getting in return (through a convoluted transaction) Curtis Joseph and Mike Grier in what I called a “three-for-zero” trade. We got Cujo, we got Grier, and we got rid of Corson. The latter was perhaps the most important of the three, addition by subtraction, and the worst of the bad years was over that very day.

    Please don’t compare Ethan Moreau to Shame Corson. Moreau is a muttonhead who makes a lot of questionable decisions, but Corson was evil incarnate. A supreme cheap shot artist, this supposed “team leader” was the furthest thing from a team player imaginable. Bad news wherever he went. He embarrassed the Oil Driop with the Arnott fiasco, he embarrassed the red maple leaf with an asshole performance at the World Juniors (1986) and another one at the senior worlds years later, and he embarrassed the blue maple leaf by quitting on the Leafs right in the middle of a playoff series. I think of all the scumbags that I have ever seen in 45 years of watching the NHL (and it’s a long list) I hate Shayne Corson the most.

  19. Dennis says:

    I’m sure I could look this up but I’m pretty sure that Corson quit on the Leaves in the middle of that run because he was basically laid low by a battle with depression and anxiety. It seems to me that later on I saw an interview with Darcy Tucker where he said he was rooming with him at the time and he was basically getting zero sleep because Corson was a mess. The fact that he quit in the middle of the playoffs was – according to Tucker – an illustration of just how powerless he could be over this affliction.

    So, if I had to guess, I’d say he was dealing with that all his life plus maybe a bit of a drinking problem as well.

  20. Dennis says:

    To get back to present day, I’m not sure how smart it is for a guy like Staios to say in public what’s being said in the room but if he believes his quotes from tonight then what we see is what we’re gonna keep getting.

    Then again, maybe I’m the one being rash. 71′s done enough great things that I’d be a little pissed if 24 called him out for the first goal and we can say 18 fucked us twice but he’d have to start defecating on the lunch buffet before anyone calls Him out.

    More pointedly, though, 24 could’ve mentioned how the Wild did a wicked job at keeping the Oilers to the outside and how they need to get more traffic on the net and work from the slots-on-in.

  21. hunter1909 says:

    Punjabi:

    The purpose of having an AHL team is so your young players basically have somewhere to develop in the style your NHL plays.

    “Sharing” An AHL team with another team invariably means there is one of the two teams that doesn’t get the same kind of development.

    Of course for all I know the Oilers farm team doesn’t bother to do this. Or even worse, does.

  22. slipper says:

    I’m pretty sure Corson dealt with anxiety, like Dennis said, but he also battled ulcerative colitis.

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