The Edmonton Oilers had a nice little run there just before and then after the All-Star game. The Toronto game was a train wreck and the RNH news was simply dreadful. Watching RNH losing the Calder to injury is painful.
I look forward to watching this team, mostly because Eberle and Hall do things other Oiler phenoms couldn’t do over the years. Sam Gagner has either turned a corner or peaked, and these are the last days of the Hemsky era and when it ends it’ll be forever. I know he’s the first off the ice at practice, but for me the actual games are what counts and since his arrival the Pardubice Prince has entertained and amazed.
The scouts tell us this year’s draft is weak and that more teams will be willing to deal their first rounders. With that in mind, I’d peg Hemsky as being worth a first round pick and a player, and still believe Detroit is a strong contender to acquire him. It just “feels” right, Hemsky in a puck possession environment. Knowing Detroit, they’ve been dying to make a few tweaks in his game and once perfected he’ll soar like an eagle and bugger the Oilers senseless four times a year.
I know Darren Dreger has been saying Detroit is going away from Hemsky and are more interested in Travis Moen, but don’t buy it. Detroit slips that out two weeks from the deadline? Plenty of time for them to fall in love again. Tonight would be a good night for Hemmer to Hum.
Paajarvi makes his return tonight, I would have kept him down on the farm. Hartikainen is the guy I’d throw into the top 6 mix at this point. Have him spend time with Ryan Smyth on the finer points of the game. Smyth’s been run ragged and is turning over the puck in strange places, but I’d bet on him 10 times out of 10.
One final item: It was interesting to see a lot of media reports having RNH being hit by the Leaf Brown. It looked to me like they hit each other or that RNH engaged, and the kid said basically the same thing. Thought I’d mention it since framing the issue seems to blur everything these days.