Oilers at Senators, G18, 09-10

This is Syd Howe in a St. Louis (NHL) Eagles uniform from 1934 (source: SIHR). I haven’t seen an Eagles uniform before so thought it might be a point of interest for you. Syd Howe was a helluva hockey player (made the HHOF) and is one of 146 Ottawa-born males to play in the best hockey league this side of heaven (Edmonton has 173 to date).

The best Ottawan (is that right? Ottawan? or is it Ottawanian? Ottawannabe? Ottawan-Kenobi? I really don’t know) to play in the show might be Denis Potvin, but Howe was a beauty player based on the numbers and reports from the era. Best Edmonton born player ever? Mark Messier.

The Ottawa Senators were in the news all summer long for all the wrong reasons. The disconnect between management and star player Dany Heatley was so bad it reached “NFL” proportions. Heatley waited until the Sens ownership had to pay out a bonus (MILLIONS!) just to be an ass (not being critical, I can get behind that kind of behaviour).

The same feud caused the Oilers some problems too, although that was more of a self-inflicted wound (Tambellini waited all summer long for the wind to change direction).

Ottawa is 7-5-2 and Edmonton is 8-8-1. They’re both about even in terms of GF-GA and Daniel Alfredsson (6-12-18) and Dustin Penner (10-11-21) lead their respective teams in total points. Oilers will be without Horcoff, Hemsky, Jacques, Souray, Nilsson (new addition) and possibly Laddy Smid although he could play. If he does play, Jason Strudwick will line up at forward. Taylor Chorney is a guestion mark at this time as well.

The Oilers are a poor road team, and since they won on the road last game there’s not a snowball’s chance in hell they win tonight. Book it.

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231 Responses to "Oilers at Senators, G18, 09-10"

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  1. Steven says:

    Penner is a different man. He actually looks… fast!

  2. danny says:

    I think Comrie forgot to take his skate blades off for the shootout.

    Tough luck for Deslauriers.

    Thats two shooutout goals off the post, off the goalie and trickle in for the win now.

  3. Kelso says:

    Didn't someone here address this in an earlier game, that a puck off the post like that does NOT count? I remember somebody looking into that when we got screwed before when the ref fell asleep.

  4. Icecastles says:

    Danny: Wouldn't it be hard to skate without blades? ;)

  5. PunjabiOil says:

    I had said a split and it's considered a successful back-to-back.

    Manage a point tommorow and they did well. With Hemsky, Horcoff, Souray, Stone all within close proximity of returning.

  6. knighttown says:

    The PLAYER has to continuously move forward. The puck can do whatever it wants.

  7. danny says:

    and by skate blades, i meant skate guards.

    The guy looked like a pee-wee intermission kid fumbling his way to the net.

    Then he shot the puck, and nothing changed.

  8. flamingpavelbure says:

    ''The PLAYER has to continuously move forward. The puck can do whatever it wants.''

    Yeah if not Spin'o'ramas would be a fail each time.

  9. knighttown says:

    Observations from moi:

    Power plays given- 0
    icings taken- 2
    Shots- 34-25
    Faceoffs- 28/54= 52%
    Blocks- 17-13

    Brilliant, brilliant execution for a first of back-to-back, road game when you've got an undermanned and overmatched squad.

    Penner. I never saw the Big M so I'm sure he's a closer comp but the power-without-violence, the lazy looking-but-fast skating and the new found puck on a string dangling reminds me of (gasp!) Mario. There are defensemen in the game right now that can't handle him. What we're soon going to figure out is whether its 25% of defensemen or 75%.

    Cogliano. I feel for the guy a little tonight. He was a big part of the above stats going 62% on the dot with 3 shots. But what I really liked was his "buy in" on the defensive side of the puck. He always stayed high when 18 and 46 went deep and I remember one play in particular in the first when he caught Kovalev from behind and hassled him into a turnover. He also cheated (battled) more in his own zone with some little cross-checks and grabs which gives him a fighting chance as he's always out muscled.

    Anyway, the "feeling bad" part is that the one time (other than the breakaway) he did something high risk was in the 3rd on a rush he took a bad angle shot and was the 5th man back. Moreau was number 3 and let his man Picard slide past Vis on the Neil chip in. 3 seconds later its in the net and Cogs gets some very dangerous negative reinforcement. He NEEDS to know that he made the right play there.

    And finally, Jeff Deslaurier led this team in giveaways tonight with 3. When the rest of the team is playing so damn smart, that simply cannot happen.

  10. mjsh says:

    I will take this team over last years team any day. This team tonight had very little skill but a lot of effort. Probably deserved a better outcome but sh*t happens.

    Brule played well as did the rest of the last year falcon's.Liked what little I saw of O'Marra.
    Nice to see Souray and Horcoff watching tonight. Wonder who steps in tomorrow.

  11. bookie says:

    What we are seeing is the impact of the flu fading from the room. It probably impacted each of the players a bit, which makes a whole team look like it sucked.

  12. bookie says:

    The question at the outset of the year was "can Penner, Smid and Cogs beat Heatley". Penner alone is leading by 4. With Cogs and Smid its 33 points to 18.

    Penner looks like its real too, not just a short term streak.

  13. Hockey Noob says:

    Anyone have any ideas on why Brule and Comrie each played under 10 minutes in this game?

  14. Bruce says:

    Denis Potvin was a mean, arrogant, wife-beating son of a bitch. He was also one of the greatest defencemen I've ever seen.

    Potvin was a complete player, more physical than Nick Lidstrom, more vicious than Raymond Bourque, better offensively than Scott Stevens. Closest thing to Potvin among modern players is probably Chris Pronger, although Potvin was better, or at least, more consistent. Three 30-goal seasons, 6 more of 20+, 310 goals and 1052 points in his 1060 GP career. +460.

    I'm not into ranking guys I never saw (like Eddie Shore) or who were at tail end of their careers when I started watching (like Doug Harvey). Of the blueliners whom I've seen in their prime I would rank them something like this:

    1. Bobby Orr
    2. Nicklas Lidstrom
    3. Viacheslav Fetisov
    4. Denis Potvin
    5. Larry Robinson
    6. Ray Bourque
    7. Scott Stevens
    8. Serge Savard
    9. Paul Coffey
    10. Scott Niedermayer
    11. Chris Chelios
    12. Borje Salming
    13. Chris Pronger
    14. Brad Park
    15. Al MacInnis
    16. Mark Howe
    17. Jacques Laperriere
    18. Tim Horton
    19. Guy Lapointe
    20. Pierre Pilote
    21. Brad McCrimmon
    22. Larry Murphy
    23. Bill White
    24. Rob Blake
    25. Rod Langway

    … with a very honourable mention to Vladimir Konstantinov who was struck down in his prime after just 446 NHL games (+185).

    Add a pound of salt and stir. I'd take my chances with any six of them, that's for sure.

  15. Bruce says:

    On Potvin and wife-beating. Almost forgot this anecdote from one of my very first blog posts about one of my heroes, Jaroslav Pouzar

    "That Oilers-Islanders rivalry was a great one, and Pouzar was one of the guys that turned the tide. I still remember the time I was sitting behind the Islanders net, the evil Denis Potvin made an outlet pass just as Pouzar came in and cashed his check with a particularly ferocious crunch. The camera and most eyes had turned up ice to follow the puck, but those in my end zone watched Potvin collect himself gingerly and glide over to the bench, doubled over in pain and gasping for wind. As this delicious scenario unfolded a leatherlung behind me let him have it with an unforgettable shot: "NOW YOU KNOW HOW YOUR WIFE FELT, POTVIN!!"

    "You had to be there, but if you were, it was damn close to perfect."

  16. Schitzo says:

    Bruce: No Brian Leetch?

  17. Bruce says:

    Thought about him, but ran out of room. Leetch was a little weak defensively for my liking. Gave almost as much back as he took. Whereas some of the guys on the bottom of the list who didn't score a whole lot, didn't give up much of anything. (Laperriere, McCrimmon, White, Langway) Just personal preference. Like I said, take it with a ton of salt.

  18. PDO says:


    …. Pronger is too low.


    Sigh. I'm 21… so my list of D's seen in their prime is a heckuva lot shorter… but Niedermayer, despite the flashy skating… can't dominate a game like Pronger can. He can't make guys scared of him. His breakout pass isn't as good. He has no where near the shot.

    And you know what?

    FCP is a damn underrated skater.


    Past that… tough loss. One of the few games this year we've outplayed the opposition significantly and we lose in the damn skills comp on a bad break.


    It's not Heatley vs. Penner, Smid and Cogliano though.

    It's Heatley, the guy who gets Smid minutes, and the guy who gets Cogliano's minutes vs. Penner, Smid and Cogliano.

    That said:

    … I swear to god, I HOPE this proves to the Oilers that they don't need a big fish. For all intents and purposes, they got Heatley. Because Penner's been better than him thus far (at least in results, I have no idea as to the underlying numbers).

    We got the big fish.

    We're still mediocre.


    You know, the GlenX's, Hejda's, Dvorak's, Reasoners and Sykora's that this team has fucking thrown away the past few years.


  19. bookie says:

    Just personal preference. Like I said, take it with a ton of salt.

    Just to protect Bruce from potential lawsuits and the such – you should not eat a ton of salt – actually even eating just a few ounces of salt could kill you!

  20. bookie says:

    It's Heatley, the guy who gets Smid minutes, and the guy who gets Cogliano's minutes vs. Penner, Smid and Cogliano.

    Totally agree that this would be more logical, however the media was pumping up the 3 vs 1 challenge.

  21. Bruce says:

    It's Heatley, the guy who gets Smid minutes, and the guy who gets Cogliano's minutes vs. Penner, Smid and Cogliano.

    It's Heatley, the replacement level player who gets Smid's minutes, the replacement level player who gets Cogliano's minutes, and the replacement level player who replaces the other mid-level salary guy the Oilers would have had to dump to make way for Heatley's huge cap hit. The Heatley deal would have triggered a whole chain reaction of crappy stuff.

  22. PDO says:

    Fair enough, sometimes the rum makes your facetiousness a little harder to catch on to…. ;)

  23. PDO says:


    Regardless of the trade being good or bad.

    Penner is playing as well as we could have humanly hoped for Heatley to play.

    … we got that "elite player."

    That our management has such a hard on for.

    … and we're still bottom feeding.

    Heck, we've also added Visnovsky and Souray in the past couple years.

    So why the fuck can't we just finally build up the bottom half of the roster? :(

  24. Bruce says:

    …. Pronger is too low.

    PDO: Maybe. He is the prototypical stud hoss defenceman for sure. I've been a CFP admirer for years, having picked him for my keeper league pool team the year he broke in (first round, fourth overall), and he remains on my team to this day. Helluva player. Has some warts though … he's on, what, his fifth team now?

    One of my major criteria is team success, and based on that there was no way to leave S.Niedermayer outside my personal top 10. He is the only player in the history of hockey to win all six of Stanley Cup, Olympic Gold, World/Canada Cup gold, World Championship gold, World Junior gold, and Memorial Cup. He's got four Stanleys to Pronger's one (nearly two … sigh). Hard to put a finger on what it is the guy does right, but he comes up smelling like a rose every damn time, or so it seems.

    Statwise the two are very similar:
    Nidermayer: 1198 GP, 163-540-703, +173
    Pronger: 1036, 145-475-620, +164

    On a per-game basis, virtually identical across the board.

  25. Bruce says:

    Penner is playing as well as we could have humanly hoped for Heatley to play.

    Penner's playing better than I personally would have expected from Heatley, cuz Penner has balls.

    Agree with your main point though. I think the bigger issue is more with the middle of the roster; it's a rare season than the Oil have both a good second line and a good third line.

  26. the 0 in 0rca is for 0 cups says:

    neil ran jdd. no one thinks? he got totally robbed tonight . so did the edmonton penners.

  27. Steve says:

    neil ran jdd. no one thinks? he got totally robbed tonight . so did the edmonton penners.

    When writing poetry, even blank verse, it's important to use line breaks, like so:

    neil ran jdd.
    no one thinks?
    he got totally robbed tonight .
    so did the edmonton penners.

  28. striatic says:

    "The question at the outset of the year was "can Penner, Smid and Cogs beat Heatley". Penner alone is leading by 4. With Cogs and Smid its 33 points to 18."

    The question should have been more like:

    "can Penner, Smid and Cogs beat Heatley plus who ever we trade for or call up to replace Smid and Cogs"

    Penner, Smid and Cogs would probably still be ahead in that analysis, but it wouldn't be quite as large a blow out.

  29. HBomb says:

    On Pronger and Niedermayer (and to some extent Rob Blake) – I almost feel sorry for those guys. Each only has one Norris trophy. In a non-Lidstrom era, each guy probably has at least one more of those.

    The really scary part? Lidstrom could argue he's been short changed. He probably should have won at least a couple before he finally bagged his first Norris in 2000-01.

    And Bruce – good call on Konstantinov. I'd have him way higher on my list, although my frame of reference only goes back to the late 1980's. Guy was nothing short of a machine – think a Russian Jason Smith, but with offensive upside. If not for the tragedy of 1997, you'd have to think he may have won a Norris at some point too.

    (That Norris trophy means a lot – win even one, and it is almost sure fire that you're getting into the Hall of Fame one day. Hence why I was so disgusted when Phaneuf got a garbage nomination in 2008, aka "Year of the Farce" at the NHL awards (sidebar: FU Jason Blake). Thank goodness we have Chara, Weber and Bouwmeester around to keep Dion Overrated away from that trophy for the time being.

  30. Dennis says:

    I really loved 13's game at Ott and it was a night like this that probably keeps the Oilers holding out hope that he can be a third line pivot who's able to do a bit of everything.

    There are a couple of one-on-one battles where he stripped guys that were just fun to watch. of course he blew a breakaway but that will happen if you're Marchanting;)

    Other things:

    - 71 didn't look good and that's two games in a row now, right?

    - I didn't realize 42 was such a big guy and he's not a bad skater, either. But, I don't think he's as fast as 22.

    - Nice to see a little bit of life left in 18 because he had a great game last night.

    Finally, someone needs to tell JDD that he's got to be smarter with the puck and last night he had a bit of an iffy game. The Oilers played great given the roster and it was a shame they couldn't get the two points.

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