OILERS AT CANUCKS G1 (12-13) 20.1.13

There was a picture in the newspaper, a guy who looked like my Aunt Stella standing in front of a strange looking logo on a billboard beside a highway and selling a new hockey league. I was a kid. The newspaper was king in my home–my father followed all world events that way: when he spoke of the DiMaggio streak you’d think he had been there but the truth is he got the news by reading the papers in a Radisson SK cafe every Saturday when he went to town.

The man who looked like Aunt Stella was Bill Hunter, the highway was the Yellowhead and the new league was the WHA. When you’re a kid “new” means “good” and when you’re old it means something you’ll need to adjust to, so I warmed to the new league right away. About 9 months after I’d heard of the Alberta Oilers, Ron Anderson was scoring the first goal in WHA history for them:

whagameoneThe goalies were Ken Brown (Oilers) and Les Binkley (Nationals) and the Meloff penalty came when the defender attempted to play the puck with Binkley’s stick. That got some play in the newspapers the next day. Jim Harrison and Al Hamilton were the big stars, I liked Bill Hicke because he was part of the original Oakland Seals expansion club. Followed that team on the radio mostly (Rod Phillips began broadcasting in year two if my memory serves) but they did have some television games.

The Oilers NHL debut is a pretty famous boxscore because so many incredible players made their NHL debut on the Oiler side. Jim Matheson has the game story here and Terry Jones has an outstanding companion piece next to it that I can’t link to but would highly recommend. Among the Edmonton Oilers who would debut in the NHL during the 1979-80 season:

  1. Wayne Gretzky
  2. Mark Messier
  3. Kevin Lowe
  4. Dave Hunter
  5. Brett Callighen
  6. Blair MacDonald
  7. Dave Semenko
  8. Risto Siltanen
  9. Ron Chipperfield
  10. Eddie Mio
  11. Jim Corsi
  12. Peter Driscoll
  13. Ron Areshenkoff
  14. Bryon Baltimore
  15. Ron Carter
  16. Don Cutts
  17. Bob Dupuis
  18. Kari Makkonen
  19. Mike Toal

The veterans on that first NHL team (Stan Weir, Colin Campbell, Al Hamilton, Bobby Schmautz, Dave Dryden, Bill Flett) were for the most part unable to provide leadership for one reason or another (Hamilton was injured, Schmautz wanted to be traded, Dryden was pretty much done and Flett was all done) but this year’s veteran group is stronger and deeper. Ryan Smyth and Shawn Horcoff are along for the heavy lifting and Ales Hemsky is going to have an enormous season if he can stay healthy.

smyth10

I think Ralph Krueger, Nail Yakupov, Justin Schultz, Craig MacTavish and Mark Fistric are excellent additions to this hockey club. Why?

  • Krueger: Smart guy, he’s already impressed me by not hiding Gagner on the 4line or talking about Hemsky needing to be tougher. The only “news” that got through during camp was Ryan Whitney telling Jason Gregor he needed to be a better man because Krueger was disappointed in him. Do you think the players felt the same way about Pat Quinn? He’s a motivator and a communicator and with young men like the Oilers cluster that’s going to sell all day.
  • Nail Yakupov: We should be prepared for him to be the most outspoken of the #1′s and possibly the best (seriously). Yakupov has immense skill and the one thing that has stayed with me is a comment from Stu MacGregor about the kid always hitting his spot when shooting. This guy is a sniper and he’s going to have an impact.
  • Justin Schultz: I think he’ll help the PP and am curious about him defensively. There was so much attention paid to his defensive game that I think we maybe forgot this was a first year pro. If you’re expecting perfection, you’re going to be disappointed but that’s on you. Manna from heaven.
  • Craig MacTavish: A wonderful addition because he’s the bookend to Lowe’s emotional leadership. MacT is the voice of reason and I do believe he’ll be an enormous help for coach Krueger.
  • Mark Fistric: I think this is an important addition in that he’s tough but not stupid. Fistric doesn’t have insane PIM totals but can blow up sorties with a big hit and stay out of the box. Oilers need some of that Jason Smith-Steve Staios toughness and Fistric–while not the same quality of defenseman–can certainly do that without hurting the team with silly trips to the penalty box.

There are many questions and the answers flow beginning tonight. Bless you Oilers, we’re behind you.

PROJECTED LINEUP

  • RNH-Hall-Eberle
  • Gagner-Yakupov-Hemsky
  • Horcoff-Smyth-Hartikainen
  • Belanger-Eager-Petrell
  • Smid-Petry
  • Schultz-Schultz
  • Whitney-Potter
  • Dubnyk
  • Injured: Sutton, Khabibulin, Jones, Peckham.

I’ll update if anything changes.

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629 Responses to "OILERS AT CANUCKS G1 (12-13) 20.1.13"

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  1. sliderule says:

    Lowetide
    Does Luongo draw in ?

    I don’t know were Stu gets the idea Yakupovs shot is aimed.Its very quick and hard but the aim from what I have seen is at the net.Not a bad idea for most players by the way.

  2. Lowetide says:

    Sliderule: exact quote from MBS:

    “One of the things that really impressed– whenever he got in all alone on a goaltender, he didn’t miss, he put it in. He has the potential — and I want to say potential — to score 30 goals or even more.”

    so doesn’t exactly disagree with either of us.

    I think they go with Schneider tonight. He’s your guy.

  3. Oilanderp says:

    No Fistric?

  4. hunter1909 says:

    Huge game tonight, lol.

    Win it, and the characterless Nucks are staring at a 0-2 record.

    It’s never too early to start putting in the boot.

  5. Oilanderp says:

    No MPS?

  6. Lowetide says:

    No Fistric as far as I know. Potter did play in europe, don’t know about Fistric’s activity during the lockout. Either way its a long season and he’ll draw in soon enough.

  7. Lowetide says:

    No MPS. Fairly certain of it, he was working with the 5line all week.

  8. Marc says:

    I think the ‘Carlyle’ who assisted on that first Alberta Oilers goal is Steve Carlyle, who subsequently taught grade 4 at Jasper Elementary School.

    I had been vaguely aware that he played for the Oilers but didn’t know that he had an assist on the franchise’s first goal.

  9. skidplate says:

    Well I did not think I would be as excited as I was yesterday and today. Thoroughly enjoyed watching hours upon hours of NHL hockey yesterday. Sure wish our Oilers played on opening night, but am looking forward to the game tonight. I do not want to get too cocky about the 7-3 game yesterday, but I sure had to LOL. I am a little surprised at how little Happy DSF posted after that. Myabe it was late and he was tired, ya thats it.

    Good Luck tonight Oilers, play hard, play smart, play mean and WIN BABY!!!!!!!
    4-2 Oilers
    Hall, Ebs, Yak and Whitney

  10. bookje says:

    Merry Christmas everyone. Better turn on that part of your brain that reverse engineers what your ears heard, but your brain ignored for when your wife says “are you even listening to me?”

  11. Matt.N says:

    bookje:
    MerryChristmas everyone.Better turn on that part of your brain that reverse engineers what your ears heard, but your brain ignored for when your wife says “are you even listening to me?”

    AFC and NFC conference championship games. Opening night for the Oilers. Wife might actually be on mute tonight.

  12. Dee Dee says:

    I wonder what Jim Corsi’s Corsi number was for that first season…

    Oilers fans have had the crap kicked out of us the last 6 years and no one really knows what will happen this season.

    Six seasons of Lucy pulling away that football and I’m feeling alot like Charlie Brown.

    Time to strap in and enjoy the ride!

  13. Woodguy says:

    Panic is already gripping Dys fans with Schnieder putting up a .643 SV% and 11.11 GAA last night.

    Note: He was not alone in the basement, Cam Ward put up .667 SV% and 12.00 GAA

    In fact, the list of goailes who put up .850 or less yesterday includes the recent Conn Smyth award winner:

    Mike Smith 0.846
    Roberto Luongo 0.833
    Braden Holtby 0.824
    Jimmy Howard 0.821
    Jonathan Quick 0.773
    Cam Ward 0.667
    Cory Schneider 0.643

    The number of extra variables the quick start to the season provides makes predictions that much harder.

    Good teams with big out of shape players might not be in normal form until the 12 games or so, and hey, that’s the quarter pole!

    Oilers and young, fast and in game shape.

    Dys are old, slow, but unfortunately , pissed off about last night.

    I have no idea if the Dys can do something about being pissed off though.

    Rah-Rah Ralph wants every game to be a track meet.

    I think I love him.

    Go Oilers!!

  14. cdean says:

    Here is to hoping that they start Schneider tonight, so we can chase him out of the net like the Ducks did.

  15. Woodguy says:

    Staples has a pretty good couple of paragraphs on Hemsky in his post today: (link: http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2013/01/20/hemsky-vancouvers-rust-and-a-steady-as-she-goes-attitude-for-the-oilers-are-key-for-edmonton-in-game-1/ )

    Oilers fans have never seen just how well Hemsky can do when he’s at his best and not having to face the toughest competition on the other squad. Now he’s on a second line with Sam Gagner and Nail Yakupov, and the attention of the other squad is quite rightly focused on the Oilers top trio of Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Taylor Hall.

    There could be a small but spectacular Hemsky bomb go off at even strength. If Hemsky can be his old self against weaker competition that will be very good news for the Edmonton, tonight and in the future.

    Would love to see a Hemsky bomb go off.

  16. Lowetide says:

    http://artfulpuck.wordpress.com/2013/01/20/veterans-to-join-the-okc-barons-roster/?utm_source=twitterfeed&utm_medium=twitter

    OKC signs Cheechoo and another on the way. Dammit! don’t rob Rajala and Pelss of playing time, not Pitlick either who has been inconsistent but doing good things!!!!!

    Good signing, though.

  17. oilgreg says:

    Lowetide, you may be correct in that they are playing Potter tonight, but I would have Fistric in the line-up. A couple of fourth-line Canucks were running around last night and Fistric would be a nice deterent. The last thing we need is gagner having to stick-up for his teammates they way he was forced to in the past.

  18. Lowetide says:

    WG: I hope Hemmer gets some time with Hall this season. Although I understand them being on different lines (great zone entry,etc) I think they could be stunning as a tandem.

  19. Lowetide says:

    oilgreg:
    Lowetide, you may be correct in that they are playing Potter tonight, but I would have Fistric in the line-up. A couple of fourth-line Canucks were running around last night and Fistric would be a nice deterent. The last thing we need is gagner having to stick-up for his teammates they way he was forced to in the past.

    I’d prefer fistric too.

  20. speeds says:

    Interesting quote from the following Jones article:

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2013/01/20/jones-deja-vu-all-over-again-for-edmonton-oilers

    Kevin Lowe is talking about the direction of the defense over the next couple years, this is as clearly as I can recall the plans on D being outlined by EDM management:

    “The defence looks more than capable. It could be good. But we’re three to five years from talking about our defence as to what it should become,” he said of waiting on developing prospects such as Oscar Klefbom, Marin Gernat, David Musil, Martin Marincin, Taylor Fedun, Colten Teubert, Dillon Simpson, Joey Laleggia and the like.

    “In three to five years it will be more of a self-made base on defence,” he said of the grow-your-own new era of putting together the hockey club.

    “I can see a day when other than Justin Schultz, it’s all self-made.”

    What this tells me LT – don’t necessarily count on UFA signings and trades to improve the D over the next few seasons. I’m sure it could happen if the right opportunity came available, but doesn’t necessarily sound like plan A.

  21. bookje says:

    Hard to predict tonight’s game – however, I am calling it 9 -5 Oilers

  22. knighttown says:

    A day late to the nostalgia of yesterday but I’ll add my 2 cents. I think the hockey experience of youth is quite different for someone like me who grew up 1000′s of km from the nearest big league hockey team. In fact, we didn’t even have a major junior team closer than 1000km away growing up in Cape Breton. I was a ’75 birthdate and the Oilers were an obvious choice for me but surprisingly there were only a handful of us among the hundreds of kids I went to school with. Although we weren’t close there was always that connection; that dozen or so kids who were also Oiler fans.

    Playing road hockey after school I was usually Jari Kurri. I remember subscribing to Hockey Illustrated and Kurri was on the cover with the awesome title; “Oilers lightning to Gretzky’s thunder.” Hockey Illustrated was awesome if any of you remember it. You’d get the “ceterfold pinups” of Toni Tanti or Brian Bellows. Absolutely loved the Who’s Better section…remember being crushed when Kurri lost to (I think) Mats Naslund? I absolutely loved Kurri but probably had only seen him play a handful of times, what with the games being on well after my bedtime.

    Neighbourhood road hockey games were a jellybean row of jerseys. In the East we have the Habs and Leaf fans of coursea and far more bruins fans than you’d think. In my gang I had my Islander buddy who was Mike Bossy and later Pat Lafontaine. I had my Wings pal who liveed through the dark years as Steve Yzerman but has had a great past 20 years. My little-guy Habs friend channeled Mats Naslund. And then there were the older kids in the neighbourhood who ALL happened to be Flyers fans. We weren’t particularly close, none were older brothers of ours or anything, so when they’d barge out of their house into our regular game saying “the Flyers are in town tonight!” one or all of us was going home crying. Jimmie was Bobby Clarke except dirtier. Craig was Bill Barber and crazy Nick was miscast as Pelle Lindberg for awhile but found his perfect alter-ego in Ron Hextall. Not sure where he is now but he should have been put away for all the stuff he did to us under the guise of “clearing his crease”.

    Gonna grab my 6-year Wild fan son for a quick game of 1-on-1 outside now. Might strap on some shinpads just in case Nick needs to protect his crease again.

  23. oilgreg says:

    Lowtide, I am courious as to why you like te Cheechoo signing. From what I understand, the guy has lost his speed, and the game – especially the way the Oilers are concerned – is all about speed. The only way I can see this as a positive is that he becomes a “Smyth,” a guy who may not have the same skill-set he once had, but a leader for the next wave. Is Cheechoo a guy that can teach our yong farm-hands what it takes to play in the NHL? Is he a guy that would lead by example, the way Smyth does?

    I was at the Golden Bears CIS game last week, and I saw two guys that would help our Barons team right now, and they would also have potential to move up the ladder. Both guys -Brandon Herrod & Johnny Bubnick – had long WHL careers. Last year Bubnick scored 37 goals for Calgary while centering their number one line. Herrod was captain of the Raiders before being picked up by kamloops for their play-off run.
    I saw him play for the Blazers in Vancouver last spring, and he was the best player on the ice.

    Again, why not pick up two guys that could move up the ladder? And, Bubnick is a big, scoring centre – whcich is just what the Oilers need. And Herrod is a hard, hard hitting winger who can also fight – again, just what the Oilers need.

  24. speeds says:

    In regards to AHL guys, sounds like Rajala, Pelss and Martindale have really benefited from the NHL guys moving up. All 3 have hit the scoresheet a little bit, and for what it’s worth (probably not too much without context) they are doing as well as any of the guys still on the roster in terms of plus minus.

  25. Lowetide says:

    speeds:
    Interesting quote from the following Jones article:

    http://www.edmontonsun.com/2013/01/20/jones-deja-vu-all-over-again-for-edmonton-oilers

    Kevin Lowe is talking about the direction of the defense over the next couple years, this is as clearly as I can recall the plans on D being outlined by EDM management:

    “The defence looks more than capable. It could be good. But we’re three to five years from talking about our defence as to what it should become,” he said of waiting on developing prospects such as Oscar Klefbom, Marin Gernat, David Musil, Martin Marincin, Taylor Fedun, Colten Teubert, Dillon Simpson, Joey Laleggia and the like.


    “In three to five years it will be more of a self-made base on defence,” he said of the grow-your-own new era of putting together the hockey club.

    “I can see a day when other than Justin Schultz, it’s all self-made.”

    What this tells me LT – don’t necessarily count on UFA signings and trades to improve the D over the next few seasons.I’m sure it could happen if the right opportunity came available, but doesn’t necessarily sound like plan A.

    speeds: I think that’s the plan, otherwise spending a 1st rder on Klefbom and 2nds on Marincin, Musil and the rest would have been a complete waste. I do like the idea in terms of not spending free agent money on defense and goalies, but as we’ve discussed many times those early 2nds could be used on skill forwards, too.

    I worry a little that it might ahve been a reason to pass on Matt Finn in the 2nd rd. “We’re good now” type of thing. Probably not, but you never know.

  26. Lowetide says:

    OilGreg: I like it because the current AHL veterans (Green, Byers) aren’t performing at a high level. If Cheechoo comes in and performs well, maybe that’ll light a fire. As for the CIS kids, I’m sure they could help but they’re getting an education. That CHL scholarship money is only available for a limited time iirc.

  27. Marc says:

    Lowetide: speeds: I think that’s the plan, otherwise spending a 1st rder on Klefbom and 2nds on Marincin, Musil and the rest would have been a complete waste. I do like the idea in terms of not spending free agent money on defense and goalies, but as we’ve discussed many times those early 2nds could be used on skill forwards, too.

    I worry a little that it might ahve been a reason to pass on Matt Finn in the 2nd rd. “We’re good now” type of thing. Probably not, but you never know.

    If you look at what Matty said after the first round of this year’s draft, the Oilers tired to move up to take a Dman but couldn’t pull it off, so I don’t think they took Moroz because they thought they had enough D. http://blogs.edmontonjournal.com/2012/06/22/will-the-oilers-take-oil-kings-winger-mitch-moroz-in-round-2-of-draft/

  28. FPB94 says:

    Is there a better young blueline duo than Alex Pietrangelo and Kevin Shattenkirk?

    Insane how the Blues robbed the Avalanche blind.

    BTW: I think Fistric will end up as the same place as all the other semi tough guys who’ve been here. Well that depends heavily on if he can take a pass and make a pass. (Which I doubt he can)

  29. striatic says:

    finally!

    i’m glad Vancouver got shelled last night.

    they’ll be ready, and the Oilers need an early test.

    Vancouver is a team built to dominate the Oilers and other weak NW division opponents and they’ve picked up a couple of president’s trophies as a result – but they are much less good against depth teams against whom they can’t shelter the Sedins so easily.

    Missing their actual top duo, Kesler/Booth, exposes them as the house of cards they are, this time in the regular season.

    i’m not sure the Oilers have the depth to take on a healthy Vancouver yet, but i’m looking forward to watching St Louis embarrass Vancouver on a regular basis.

  30. Lowetide says:

    Marc: I think they were trying to deal up for the other Oil King forward (Henrik Samuelsson).

  31. pboy says:

    I’m still bummed about Musial and Weaver. I watched a video on YouTube, called Earl Weaver gets pissed. He goes up and down the 1st base Ump for 2-1/2 minutes. Fantastic.

    Go Oilers!

  32. oilgreg says:

    Lowetide: Yes, that is what is wrong with the WHL’s scholarship program. Players should be able to give the pro’s a shot, AND then come back for their education. Perhaps that is one of the reasons some former players were trying to organize a players union?

    But, the scholarship is, and I stand to be corrected, tuition & books. This would be about $8000 per year at a canadian university. All the Oilers would need to do is guarantee this money and I would bet the players would sign. I am sure that is less money than they give as a signing bonus to europeans…

  33. DBO says:

    Way too excited for today. Hell, even the Raptors play the Lakers which should be fun.

    I wonder if our most well rounded lineup will end up being one where Hall plays with Hemmer on tough minutes line. I talked myself into Yak with Horc and Smyth this holiday. Why? Because I think he would add real scoring to third line, with our most dependable vets. Yes it may curtail his ev scoring, but he’ll still get pts on the PP. It also allows Harsky to ride shotgun with RNH and Ebs.

    Hall – Gagner – Hemsky
    Harsky – Nuge – Eberle
    Smyth – Horc – Yak
    Eager – Belanger – Jones

    More balance. More size spread out. And Yak as well as Nuge and Ebs get secondary dmen. Nuge has never had to face #1 d pairings and checking lines, so it would allow us to shelter him and give that line the Sedin treatment = crazy o zone starts.

  34. Woodguy says:

    Nuge has never had to face #1 d pairings and checking lines, so it would allow us to shelter him and give that line the Sedin treatment = crazy o zone starts.

    I used Gabe TOI tool to look at the match ups in every game last year.

    After the loss to TOR and then DET on the road, (Feb 8th) opposition coaches moved their 1st pairing D away from Hemsky/Gagner and to RNH/Eberle in almost every game after that. (RNH missed a few games in there, but the 1D followed Eberle around)

    That was 29 games against top D and 14 went 21pts/29 games, and 93 went 17pts/22 games.

    I agree they would excel if they get sheltered, but it won’t be the first time they see 1D pairings.

  35. SK Oiler Fan says:

    oilgreg,

    oilgreg:
    Lowetide, you may be correct in that they are playing Potter tonight, but I would have Fistric in the line-up. A couple of fourth-line Canucks were running around last night and Fistric would be a nice deterent. The last thing we need is gagner having to stick-up for his teammates they way he was forced to in the past.

    Agreed. Wiess needs to be taught a lesson by a Sutton or equivalent. Lappiere-well he deserves a beat down every game.
    Oilers answer is Eager, and that would mean Kruger would have to put him on the ice. Really hope Krueger just rolls 3 lines

  36. wordbird says:

    SK Oiler Fan,

    Coach K has suggested all along he wants to use al 4 lines as much as possible (to avoid wearing guys out, etc), so i think Eager will play. the trick for K will be to get Eager pointed at the right net, and to keep him engaged. if Ralph can get some usefulness out of the 4th line, man, that would help. I’d like too see Eager/Hordy/MPS/Petrell rotated in and out of the lineup so they’re all fresh and motivated. MPS and Petrell can PK, but what else can Eager and Horidchuk do? Hopefully Ralph can push the right buttons with those two…

  37. FPB94 says:

    SK Oiler Fan:
    oilgreg,

    Agreed. Wiess needs to be taught a lesson by a Sutton or equivalent. Lappiere-well he deserves a beat down every game.
    Oilers answer is Eager, and that would mean Kruger would have to put him on the ice. Really hope Krueger just rolls 3 lines

    Idk why y’all worried about guys who play 5 minutes a night and are generally black holes for their team.

    The last 5 deterrents they had all sucked and didn’t deter shit.

  38. Woodguy says:

    Zoolander signs 5 year extension at 5.25 per with a limted NTC.

    No one, and I mean no one, has turned 1 year of good performance into long term contracts with the art that Zoolander does.

    Good for him.

  39. Bushed says:

    Speeds:

    Great point with the article about the D plan being 3-5 years out. What worries me about that quote as a fan is: 1. Where are we going to be at with our forwards by then (trades, injuries, big contracts etc)? 2. Should we expect the same “improve at a glacial pace” mentality when it comes to improving our team size and sandpaper?

    DBO:

    Interesting thoughts. I’ve wondered myself if RK’s comments about playing “duos” alludes to trying to put some size or toughness with the skill guys. Hey, it worked with Gretz and Kurri. Unfortunately, though, we currently have no Semenkos. Can Eager fill this role? Harski? Hordi?

    Personally, I think we need more toughness and size (see Strudwick’s article on ON), but I guess we’ll see.

  40. striatic says:

    wordbird,

    what i like so much about the Yakupov pick is how it allows Smyth to play down the lineup, where i think he will be excellent.

    secondary scoring is something this team needs desperately.

  41. Marc says:

    If Zajac is worth 8 x $5.75M and Lupol is worth 5 x $5.25M in the new NHL, I’m feeling pretty good about the Hall and Ebs contracts.

  42. Bushed says:

    Wordbird:

    Looks like we’re on a similar wavelength this morning!

  43. striatic says:

    Woodguy,

    it isn’t going up against the top D pairings that worries me about Eberle and RNH, so much as going up against top lines that maintain puck possession.

    difficult to score if you never get the puck.

  44. Lowetide says:

    Woodguy:
    Zoolander signs 5 year extension at 5.25 per with a limted NTC.

    No one, and I mean no one, has turned 1 year of good performance into long term contracts with the art that Zoolander does.

    Good for him.

    Hemsky must be giggling his ass off.

  45. DBO says:

    Woodguy,

    Well that makes less anxious about Nuge. Good to know. However, i still hope they look to exploit matchups and Zone starts. By moving Hall to the Hemsky line you force teams to make a choice. Right now i think we’d all agree it’ll be the Nuge line that gets toughest matchups against. Move Hall to hemsky, then you free up one of our top 3 players to play 2nds, and moves Yak to playing D zone challenged folk, especially since the Horc line will play a lot of EV minutes. Yak would make the Sedins have to play defense, and that can only help us.

  46. Rondo says:

    Looks like Detroit could use some scoring, Linus Omark trade is looking better.

  47. Woodguy says:

    DBO:
    Woodguy,

    Well that makes less anxious about Nuge. Good to know. However, i still hope they look to exploit matchups and Zone starts. By moving Hall to the Hemsky line you force teams to make a choice. Right now i think we’d all agree it’ll be the Nuge line that gets toughest matchups against. Move Hall to hemsky, then you free up one of our top 3 players to play 2nds, and moves Yak to playing D zone challenged folk, especially since the Horc line will play a lot of EV minutes. Yak would make the Sedins have to play defense, and that can only help us.

    Agreed 100%

  48. DBO says:

    Buffalo vs Flyers already! Wow, Flyers back to back afternoon games to start. they looked a wee bit rusty. No way that can be good. We as Oil fans may be annoyed about not starting last night, but every other day is a good way to go. Vancouver will come out angry, so i hope Fistric draws in (but doubt it). Eager better channel his San Jose self and run around a bit. That is why I believe Fistric will see more time then Potter. He allows Eager to be Eager, and is the only dman we have who actually punishes opposing forwards (and DMen based in youtube). Initiate, don’t retaliate!!!!!!

  49. Woodguy says:

    striatic:
    Woodguy,

    it isn’t going up against the top D pairings that worries me about Eberle and RNH, so much as going up against top lines that maintain puck possession.

    difficult to score if you never get the puck.

    Top pairing D goes hand in hand with that.

    If I get some time today I’ll look at the top 3 forwards 14/93 faced in those games as well to see what they faced.

  50. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Woodguy: Mike Smith 0.846
    Roberto Luongo 0.833
    Braden Holtby 0.824
    Jimmy Howard 0.821
    Jonathan Quick 0.773
    Cam Ward 0.667
    Cory Schneider 0.643

    Thanks for quantifying this, Woodguy. First thing that jumped off the highlight reels at me was how bad some of the star goalies looked. Could be a real wild card in the early going.

  51. Bruce McCurdy says:

    pboy:
    I’m still bummed about Musial and Weaver. I watched a video on YouTube, called Earl Weaver gets pissed. He goes up and down the 1st base Ump for 2-1/2 minutes. Fantastic.

    Go Oilers!

    Stan the Man, on the other hand, played 3026 major league games and never got tossed even once. Polar opposities. But two great ones to say the least.

  52. Lowetide says:

    John Short story I don’t think he’d mind me sharing. Years ago, John worked in Toronto as an AP (Associated Press) writer and would cover various sporting stories that would work their way across Canada in newspapers during that time.

    John and a friend of his at AP LOVED baseball, talked about it all the time. They talked baseball morning, noon and night and while at work there was a tag-a-long who’d try to keep up (in other areas too, but I’ll leave that out).

    Anyway, they used to get together at John’s place for the Saturday baseball game of the week, share a few drinks and watch the game. The tag-a-long BEGGED THEM FOR YEARS to attend, promised to buy all the drinks, etc but they wouldn’t let him because he wasn’t as obsessed as they were about baseball.

    FINALLY the light weight convinces them, but there are rules: arrive on time, don’t talk a lot and for God’s sake no stupid questions.

    Buddy arrives, and the two pals are already there (I imagine Oscar and another Oscar from the Odd Couple, with the newbie being Felix) and have already started.

    Now the game starts. The guy has been there FIVE minutes. Announcer tells the audience that Stan Musial is on deck.

    Tag-a-long: “Was Stan Musial really as good in his prime as they say he was?”

    John Short: “Get. out.”

    ahahaha. I love that story.

  53. DBO says:

    So Lupul contract anyone? Wow. 3 more years then Hemsky and limited no trade. He is a lesser offensive player and more of an injury history (which is hard with hemsky). Love to see TSN and the TO media talk about it in glowing terms. Staples has some twitter reaction on COF, and it seems to be 50/50 good/bad. Atta boy Nonis, way to set up your first big move in an attempt to make Burkes first big move not look as bad (KEssel). Kessel move is still horrible, but way to overpay on an injury plagued (bad back, just ask Simpson about how that affects you in the NHL) streaky scorer. he is a good guy, good teammate, but he got more then Tavares for cap hit?!?

  54. wheatnoil says:

    I’m a big fan of the Cheechoo signing for OKC. I agree that Pelss, Rajala, Pitlick et al need playing time, but a healthy amount of competition is a good thing. When Hall, Nuge, and Eberle were there, it wasn’t even a competition, but now…

    Cheechoo, Arcobello, Green, Pitlick, Rajala, Pelss, Martindale, Hamilton, VV, Cornet, Lander, Byers and Paajarvi in time… there’s spots available but it’s not guaranteed. I feel like Nelson will give players the minutes if they produce… and if they don’t produce they don’t get the minutes. Plus, there’s depth for the inevitable call-ups.

    That upcoming veteran D-signing, if it’s even a half-decent one, will be a godsend for that team though. Sweet Jesus.

  55. FPB94 says:

    A lot of guys in OKC won’t be cutting it. And kids in the AHL always make out better when they got help.

  56. DBO says:

    not Oil related, but man dies Regher look terrible. Old slow dmen do not do well with no full camp. gonna be a lot of PP’s to start the year, and if that is true then the Oil will start very well.

  57. Bruce McCurdy says:

    I’m no Lupul fan, and I think Tavares is terrific, but that’s not a good comp. One contract bought a bunch of RFA years, one didn’t.

  58. Spydyr says:

    The Chechoo train.Hope he plays his way up to the big team.They need some crazy.

  59. Kris11 says:

    Predictions?

    I’ll guess 4-3 for Vancouver with Hall, Schultz, and Hemsky with the Oiler goals.

  60. hunter1909 says:

    Woodguy: Panic is already gripping Dys fans

    Exactly why tonight’s game is big. If not showing up last night is anything to go by. I’m reading a lot of talk about how the announcers are certain to be gushing about the young Oilers, to the consternation of the Flop’s hysterical fanbase.

    Vancouver fans have so many things going for them; cup virginity means they can’t talk about winning without making fools of themselves, and the innate lack of character from the actual nucks themselves…incredible to see the refs basically decide they weren’t going to let the whiny divers win against the Bruins, and who could blame them?

  61. hunter1909 says:

    Predictions?

    12-2 Oilers.

  62. Marc says:

    5-2 Edmonton.

    Vancouver is on the second game of a back to back and had the fewest players of any team playing during the lock out. I don’t think they’ve got the legs to skate with the OIlers tonight.

  63. Lowetide says:

    VAN goes with Luongo. I think their goalies are both very good, would rather have the kid in net tonight, though.

  64. oilgreg says:

    FPB94,
    As per your comment about not worrying about guys who play five minutes, last night;
    Volpatti played 13:03
    Weise played 14:47

  65. hunter1909 says:

    Lowetide,

    Don’t worry, because Luongo gets chased out after the 5th goal.

  66. bookje says:

    Kris11:
    Predictions?

    I’ll guess 4-3 for Vancouver with Hall, Schultz, and Hemsky with the Oiler goals.

    We don’t like that kind of talk ’round here. Perhaps you would like reconsider – I believe that 8-2 for the Oilers is still available as an option.

  67. leadfarmer says:

    So I thought NHL Center ICE was going to be free for a couple weeks, but I cant access the channels. Anyone of you guys know anything more about this issue? Was hoping to watch the game tonight.

  68. Bar_Qu says:

    I think Vigneault realizes that yesterday was just one game & comes back with Luongo. I don’t think the rust is off the Dys, and this game leaves their faithful questioning the start as Monday dawns. 4-2 Oil, winner by Belanger. Bookje it.

  69. Kris11 says:

    Sorry, I predict 9-0 for the Oilers, with Schultz and Eberle each getting getting 2, RNH and Hall one a piece, and Yakupov getting a Yak trick.

  70. DBO says:

    LOL. “The probing continues here in Buffalo”. Wow, sometimes the lame USA announcer attempt at puns is awesome. Yes, the NBC dude (whose name escapes me right now) is solid and the best of the American options, but that line was awesome.

  71. Kris11 says:

    I would like to redefine a “Yak Trick” as follows:

    A Yak Trick occurs when a player does all of the following on the same game day:

    -Scores a goal
    -Gets an Assist
    -Makes a controversial or incenidary comment that may or may not have been a result of mistranslation, poor knowledge of English, or a culture clash,

  72. Lowetide says:

    Kris: That’s outstanding.

    Leadfarmer: It’s working for me. Maybe call Shaw because I called them two weeks ago to subscribe and they didn’t have a package yet. Might be a box issue.

  73. Rebilled says:

    3-2 Goilers.

    Schultz, Eberle with 2

    I’m really enjoying this Vancouver goalie situation. If they trade Luongo, then Schneider is on the hook all season.

    If they don’t trade him, they don’t replace Kesler and Booth for however long they’re out.

    Be nice if Barker and/or Vandy play tonight. If not, 3-0 Goilers.

  74. HiddenDarts says:

    Gotta say, after watching the Leafs-Canadiens game yesterday, I am absolutely PSYCHED to see this game tonight.

    But damn did I ever want to be the “I don’t need the NHL”-guy. I was desperate to be all: “Oh, sorry. I’ve been watching the KHL lately… What’s this North American League you speak of?”

    Impossible. Totally impossible.

    It’s just head and shoulders above everything else. The production is amazing, the action is amazing, the skill (check those Blues-Wings highlights) is just freakin’ amazing.

    So I feel both pissed at myself for being so weak, and extremely thankful that the NHL is back.

    Hard to keep a straight backbone when the hockey’s this good.

  75. Kris11 says:

    That USA announcer dude, Emrick I think, is famous and respected but I can’t listen to a word he says. Awful. He overhypes every play and uses prenetious diction and his voice has a grating quality that is surprising in a guy who gets paid for his voice, Moreover, he comes across as particularly inauthentic, like he is faking excitement, which makes it harder for me to be genuinely excited. Ot’s like he is mocking you while he calls the game. (IMO, the job of an announcer is to sound authentically engaged, even when you aren’t)

    The U.S. has so many good announcers in other sports (and some bad) that it is so irritating that they think this guy is the best and never even seem to try others for big national games.

    Serioulsy, somebody at NBC needs to do some market testing of games called by this dude and games called by others to see if his voice and his play by play is actually hurting ratings. I’d bet real money that it does.

  76. bookje says:

    With all of these grand predictions, I think we all need to give our heads a shake and get real. A much more realistic question for tonight is how many hatricks will Oilers players score and who gets them – also who wins the Safeway million?

    Edit – Now that I think about it, I am pretty sure Ralph Krueger will win the safeway draw.

  77. Lowetide says:

    kris: that ladling on comment he makes, plus the helping stick or turning stick drive me nuts. I’m sure people who listen for years get used to it but it drives me nuts.

    Oh well, old age is coming.

  78. DBO says:

    What i want to see most is Yakupov take a run at a Sedin and crush him, ala Ovechkin. Yes the kid is smaller, but he doesn’t shy away from contact. And here’s hoping Whitney looks good. if he does playoffs are a real possibility.

  79. DBO says:

    And a note on the Flyers Sabres game. This Foligno kid is a beast. Hits everything and has some skill. i see why they were willing to deal Kassian. Sabres may be one of the most balanced teams in the league and may surprise.

  80. jake70 says:

    Lowetide:
    kris: that ladling on comment he makes, plus the helping stick or turning stick drive me nuts. I’m sure people who listen for years get used to it but it drives me nuts.

    Oh well, old age is coming.

    When the Oilers lost game 7 back in 2006, I was flipping b/w the Pennsylvania regional Hockey network… I mean NBC, and CBC, and happened to be on NBC when the empty netter was scored. I get a visceral reaction hearing this guy, and it’s not a positive one.

  81. FPB94 says:

    oilgreg,

    LAst year they averaged 8 and 8. (I’l agree my comment was rather exagerated)

    Personally if a team wants to play terrible players 8 minutes a game because they can check it’s their deal. I’d rather have my top line out there go score a goal than to dress somebody who can’t play hockey.

    I think the all the last deterrents were disasters all across the board, Fistric doesn’t seem to know how to shoot or pass at the NHL level.

  82. gogliano says:

    47 – 1, Ditka’s coaching wins two Safeway Millions for some lucky fan.

    Goilers

  83. Kris11 says:

    I agree with DBO, that the most interesting, important info we’ll get out of tonight’s game is what Whitney’s mobility (not speed, per se) is like.

    A healthy Whitney means that the D is not bad when they have a full compliment. A broken Whitney means the defense has a massive hole in the top 4 even before the season starts.

  84. delooper says:

    It’ll be a 1-1 tie in regulation, go to shootout where the oilers will win with some insane move by Yakupov and we’ll be talking for weeks about whether or not that type of move should be legal.

  85. Marc says:

    FPB94:
    oilgreg,

    LAst year they averaged 8 and 8. (I’l agree my comment was rather exagerated)

    Personally if a team wants to play terrible players 8 minutes a game becausethey can check it’stheirdeal. I’d rather have my top line out there go score a goal than to dress somebody who can’t play hockey.

    I think the all the last deterrents were disasters all across the board, Fistric doesn’t seem to know how to shoot or pass at the NHL level.

    A commenter on one of the Canucks’ blogs last night pointed out that the nominal fourth line was actually getting more ice time than the nominal second line of Kassian, Raymond and Ebbett.

    Another commenter called Kassian, Raymond and Ebbett the ITROS line -as in, the Is That Really Our Second line.

  86. "Steve Smith" says:

    Somebody was commenting a thread or two back about our top two lines consisting entirely of Oilers’ first-round picks. I note that the third line is also entirely Oilers picks (one of them first round), as is our starting goaltender (again, a first rounder). On defence, meanwhile, everybody but Jeff Petry is an import.

    So our lineup tonight, not counting Yann Danis who presumably will not actually play, consists of:

    8 Oilers’ first round picks
    1 Oilers’ second round pick (Petry)
    1 Oilers’ fourth round pick (Horcoff)
    1 Oilers’ sixth round pick (Hartikainen)
    3 draft picks by other teams who have spent their entire NHL careers with the Oilers (Pettrell, Smid, J. Schultz)
    5 players not drafted by the Oilers who have played for other teams (Belanger, Eager, N. Schultz, Whitney, Potter)

    So, in total, six of our nineteen (the last five plus Smyth) have played an NHL game in a non-Oilers uniform, and Potter has played so few that it hardly counts.

    If somebody wants to turn these data into some kind of point, be my guest.

  87. Captain Happy says:

    leadfarmer:
    So I thought NHL Center ICE was going to be free for a couple weeks, but I cant access the channels.Anyone of you guys know anything more about this issue?Was hoping to watch the game tonight.

    What device are you using?

    I was having the same issue on my Apple TV.

    Just did a re-start and now everything is fine.

  88. Woodguy says:

    striatic:
    Woodguy,

    it isn’t going up against the top D pairings that worries me about Eberle and RNH, so much as going up against top lines that maintain puck possession.

    difficult to score if you never get the puck.

    Here’s the first 10 games starting on the FEb 8th DET game, where I noticed the change.

    These are all for Eberle as he played every game, whereas RNH didn’t and if RNH played, he played with Eberle.

    When I get more time I’ll do the rest.

    Top 2 D and 3 F TOI (excluding goalies) against Eberle

    Feb 8th at DET
    Bertuzzi
    Datsyuk
    Lidstrom
    White
    Franzen

    Feb 11 at OTT
    Karlsson
    Duba
    Alfredsson
    Greening
    Turis

    Feb 15 vs TOR
    Phaneuf
    Aulie
    Lombardi
    Connolly
    Boyce

    Feb 17 vs COL
    Hejda
    O’Byrene
    O’Reilly
    Landeskog
    Olver

    Feb 19th vs VAN
    Bieksa
    Hamhuis
    Raymond
    Booth
    Higgins

    Feb 21 at CAL
    Iginla
    Jokinen
    Bouwmeester
    Giordano
    Tanguay

    Feb 23 vs PHI
    Coburn
    Carle
    REad
    Schenn
    Timonen

    Feb 25 vs PHX
    OEL (swoon)
    Whitney
    Rozsival
    Vrbata
    Hanzal (he’s so hot right now)

    Feb 27 at WIN
    Byfuglien
    Enstrom
    WHeeler
    LIttle
    Ladd

    Feb 29 vs STL
    Berglund
    Stewart
    Perron
    Colaiacovo
    Pietrangelo

    By eye the road comp looks a little harder than home comp. Which is to be expected.

    Here’s his road/home splits from the Feb 8th game to the end of the year:

    Home
    10pts in 15gms 0.666pts/gam

    Away
    11pts in 14 games 0.785pts/gm

    That’s why I’m not too worried about sheltering Eberle.

    His possession numbers are not elite, but his scoring is.

    His possession numbers should get better.

    Small sample size, but he did do it against some of the better players in the NHL.

  89. sliderule says:

    NHL center ice is 50 bloody bucks.

    If you like hockey like all the posters on this site you have to get it..

    I am in Phoenix and I OD on about 10 games a week plus all the oiler games.Couldn’t do without it.

  90. Lowetide says:

    Brett Clark apparently on the way to OKC this week. nice signing if it happens.

    http://www.tendthefarm.com/

  91. vishcosity says:

    sliderule,

    You in PHX for Jan 30? While I was determined to give the NHL zero dollars this year, I may have to try and catch that game. I’ve tried finding a bar where I could watch the yotes but so far found none willing to commit to including sound. So I figure I’ll have to go live.

    Might be fun to meet for the game. I’ve always enjoyed your comments and would look forward to hanging with anyone who has heard of any Oiler not named Wayne.

  92. khildahl says:

    Hey LT and assorted posters.

    Long-time listener, first-time caller (there seem to be lot of us coming out of the woodwork lately). I don’t think I’ve ever been this excited for a hockey season to start in recent memory, and thought I should direct my enthusiasm at people who actually care instead of continuing to annoy my dogs (who unfathomably don’t seem to give a crap) and my wife (who claims to give said crap, but refused to watch even one grainy AHL feed with me during the lockout-that-shall-not-be-named, so how much of a fan can she really be?).

    T-minus 4 hours… Go Oilers.

  93. FPB94 says:

    vishcosity:
    sliderule,

    You in PHX for Jan 30?While I was determined to give the NHL zero dollars this year, I may have to try and catch that game.I’ve tried finding a bar where I could watch the yotes but so far found none willing to commit to including sound.So I figure I’ll have to go live.

    Might be fun to meet for the game. I’ve always enjoyed your comments and would look forward to hanging with anyone who has heard of any Oiler not named Wayne.

    Gotta stop these crazed fans.

  94. prairieschooner says:

    If the cannucks are not sharp today it could easily be a Chicagoesque type result.
    The second line of Gags Hemmer and Yak could easlity be the silent assasins
    I believe in Dubnyk
    Secondary scoring could come in many forms
    Schultz with a shortie tonight
    Finally no more sleeps

  95. DeadmanWaking says:

    My favourite passage from Taleb’s Antifragility so far:

    The Secret Thirst for Chance

    Which brings us to the existential aspect of randomness. If you are not a washing machine or a cuckoo clock–in other words, if you are alive–something deep in your soul likes a certain measure of randomness and disorder.

    There is a titillating feeling associated with randomness. … I myself, while writing these lines, try to avoid the tyranny of a precise and explicit plan, drawing from an opaque source inside me that gives me surprises. Writing is only worth it when it provides us with the tingling effect of adventure … [Writing books is fun. Writing 750-word op-eds], even without the philistinism of the editor, bores me to tears. And, remarkably, what the author is bored writing bores the reader.

    If I could predict what my day would exactly look like, I would feel a little bit dead. .

    … Consider that all the wealth of the world can’t buy a liquid more pleasurable than water after intense thirst.

    Oh yes, I’m always banging away at that “opaque source” to see what will fall out. Sometimes dull, sometimes giddy, but always chance.

    If Taleb was a play-by-play man, he’d use the word “philistinism”. A lot.

  96. striatic says:

    Woodguy,

    i shouldn’t worry so much,

  97. SK Oiler Fan says:

    FPB94: Idk why y’all worried about guys who play 5 minutes a night and are generally black holes for their team.

    The last 5 deterrents they had all sucked and didn’t deter shit.

    You missed my point. Wiesse, volpatti etc were running around in the 3rd at the Ducks better players. The Oilers only deterrent to these guys running at the Oiler stars tonight is Eager.
    Recent history has shown having Eager on the ice can be a detriment to winning games.
    I’m a fan of playing your best players as much as possible which of course are on the top 3 lines of tbe Oilers. Most of the oilers top 9 are in midseason form and have young legs. Imo petrell and Belanger should only see the ice for PK, then you hope Eager doesn’t have to see the ice in response to guys like Wiess running around. I’d have preffered Fistric over Potter. Unlike Eager he at least appears to have other uses
    Wiess scares me – hits to injure

  98. raventalon40 says:

    http://www.630ched.com/news/edmonton/story.aspx?ID=1867144

    Apparently the City and the Oilers are also close to releasing news on the arena on Wednesday.

  99. Woodguy says:

    striatic:
    Woodguy,

    i shouldn’t worry so much,

    But they are awesome important questions.

    I enjoy getting into the minutea of it all.

  100. FPB94 says:

    SK Oiler Fan,

    I guess like that. But sadly I’m not really convinced Fistric can play hockey either. Ben Eager isn’t that bad; if his brain wasn’t cramped he’d probably be a top 6 forward.

    I also believe that ”deterring” doesn’t work for shit. Last 5 guys who’ve been here (Macintyre, Jacques, whatever) didn’t really change anything.

    We’ve had little to no ”Deterrents” over here and have done fine injury/cheap shot wise.

  101. DBO says:

    LT: If Brett Clark goes to OKC, that is a great pick up. Heck, I would have been OK with him on the big club, so it becomes a nice depth option if Whitney or a vet gets hurt. What other former NHLers are hanging around looking for work? No need to deal for vets at the deadline if we can just call them up for the stretch drive! Didn’t Montreal cut Mike Commodore? Be a nice solid addition to the farm, and insurance for a stay at home depth type of guy with some experience.

  102. bookje says:

    While the political front has been quiet, I have seen some of the renderings and rendered flyby’s of the arena site that have been being developed. They are really impressive.

  103. Lucinius says:

    The best deterrent, and most effective, is the Mark Messier deterrent; impale anyone who dares to take a run at you. Takes the 2/4/5 minute penalty, because in the long run its worth it to get it out there that ‘yes, you can run me and try to hurt me, but I will, at the very least, take you with me’. In today’s NHL you don’t need a Semenko who can skate with the skill lines and beat up anyone who dares put a hair out of place on Gretzky. The game has changed. Also means you don’t need to waste a roster spot on such a player.

  104. digdeepnbleedblue says:

    Matt.N,

    Hahaha Mint, brah! Im pointing the remote at the GF right now. Not working. @*&%$!!!

    San Fran up by 4. Great game! 4 plus to go.

  105. dessert1111 says:

    Hope everyone enjoys the game tonight!

    15-0 Oilers ;)

  106. striatic says:

    Woodguy,

    i appreciate your analysis greatly.

    i’ll start worrying once the Oilers start losing.

    half their players.

    to injury.

  107. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    Brett Clark apparently on the way to OKC this week. nice signing if it happens.

    http://www.tendthefarm.com/

    If that’s true, very solid signing.

    Clark might be a better 7 than Potter and Peckham, so if he’s working the farm and the #9, its a very good thing.

    $250K?

  108. delooper says:

    $250K?

    He’s a Saskatchawanian, so maybe he’s looking to come home.

  109. Lowetide says:

    WG: What I like is that they have a plan. Teubert didn’t show he was ready, you’d like Fedun to play all year in OKC so this guy is perfect. PERFECT!

  110. gogliano says:

    Canucks might be mad about yesterday but a BTB straight out of the lockout can’t be easy. Also, Luongo starts. Increasing the lemon scent to Luongo would be a second victory for the good guys.

    MUST WIN GAME, I think.

  111. DeadmanWaking says:

    Another book I read recently, Automate This, described the use of computers to write simple sports recaps. I’ve been watching for more of this. This one isn’t even tying its shoes.

    From NHL Game Preview – Oilers underdogs vs Canucks at Vancouver:

    The game also pits Vancouver’s No. 9-ranked offense, averaging 3 goals per game, against a Oilers defense that ranks No. 1 at 0 goals allowed. The Canucks power play is averaging 50% while the Oilers defense kills off 100% of their penalties.

    Spruce Bruce, is that you? Ha. No, I think we’re safe for a while yet.

  112. delooper says:

    Yeah, they failed to mention the Oilers atrocious offense this season. Not a single goal, and it’s January!!

  113. Woodguy says:

    striatic:
    Woodguy,

    i appreciate your analysis greatly.

    i’ll start worrying once the Oilers start losing.

    half their players.

    to injury.

    Thanks!

    I think I provide more information than analysis.

    Next ten games for Eberle”

    MAR 2 vs DAL
    Nystrom
    Dvorak
    Fiddler
    Larsen
    Souray

    MAR 5 at ANA
    Sbisa
    VIsnosky
    Lydman
    Perry
    Hagman

    MAR 6 at SJS
    Boyle
    Vlasic
    Winnik
    Moore
    MItchell

    MAR 8 vs. MTL
    Subban
    Gorges
    Eller
    Bourque
    Palushaj

    MAR 10 at COL
    Hejda
    O’Byrne
    Landeskog
    O’Reilly
    Downie

    MAR 12 vs SJS
    Clowe
    Winnik
    Vlasic
    Marleau
    Murray

    MAR 14 vs CBJ (aka night off)
    Lebda
    GIlles
    Johansen
    Russell
    Byers

    MAR 16 vs CAL
    Iginla
    Boumeester
    Tanguay
    Stajan
    Giordano

    MAR 18 vs PHX
    Klesla
    OEL (Man crush)
    Hanzal (always hot)
    Vrbata
    Korpikoski (Finn with Polish name and plays exactly like a Finn with a Polish name. Shoulders 5ftt wide and can skate. He’s what you pray to various gods Harksi becomes. Love the player.)

    MAR 20 at NAS
    Suter
    Weber
    Fisher
    Erat
    Kostitsyn

    The last game is the 6-3 win in which Hemsky got a hat trick.

    Hemsky’s top 5 opponents that night:
    Ellis
    Bourque
    Legwand
    Hornqvist
    Gill

    Perhaps that’s a preview of a small Hemsky bomb going off when all the good players are stuck to 4/93/14?

  114. jake70 says:

    3rd week of January, Oilers only 2 points out of division lead……woohoo!

  115. Captain Happy says:

    Iginla playing centre in Calgary.

    Flames looking great.

  116. Rocknrolla says:

    DeadmanWaking,

    Lets hope those auto stats are the same post game too!

  117. Lowetide says:

    The kids are the impressive thing in CAL tonight. Backlund and Baertschi are very nice young players.

  118. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Lowetide:

    The least impressive thing in Calgary tonight is the opposition.

  119. khildahl says:

    Anyone know which Sportsnet crew we’re getting tonight? Listening to the guys on the Calgary game is making me dread the possibility it could be the Vancouver guys.

  120. Lowetide says:

    I’m just hoping this dull Calgary game ends by 7.

  121. spoiler says:

    Are you guys having the same technical issues with Sportsnet in Edmonton as we are having in the “403″?

  122. Woodguy says:

    Captain Happy:
    Iginla playing centre in Calgary.

    Flames looking great.

    I watched about 20 min of that game and though both teams looks awful.

  123. khildahl says:

    spoiler:
    Are you guys having the same technical issues with Sportsnet in Edmonton as we are having in the “403″?

    Other than the fact they seem to be showing two teams I hate right now?

  124. Woodguy says:

    delooper: He’s a Saskatchawanian, so maybe he’s looking to come home.

    OKC isn’t near Wapella, SK

  125. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    The kids are the impressive thing in CAL tonight. Backlund and Baertschi are very nice young players.

    Best two players for CAL.

  126. khildahl says:

    Patrick Marleau ate his Wheaties this morning.

  127. delooper says:

    Woodguy,

    Ja, but he’s probably smart enough to know he’s the clear 1st call-up, and that injuries are pretty likely.

  128. Rocknrolla says:

    khildahl,

    Welcome Khildal, pretty sure it’s Gino, Kevin, and Louie like usual….saw them do a little preview on SN a couple days back

  129. spoiler says:

    Woodguy: I watched about 20 min of that game and though both teams looks awful.

    When the screen isn’t black, I’d agree with this.

    khildahl: Other than the fact they seem to be showing two teams I hate right now?

    LMAO!

  130. Rebilled says:

    Calgary looked ok in the first. They look more like the flames now.

  131. delooper says:

    spoiler: When the screen isn’t black, I’d agree with this.

    And when the screen is black, it’s the best Flames hockey I’ve seen in years.

  132. khildahl says:

    Rocknrolla:
    khildahl,

    Welcome Khildal, pretty sure it’s Gino, Kevin, and Louie like usual….saw them do a little preview on SN a couple days back

    Great (and thanks). I think we’ve all been waiting for Gene’s Hemmer and Nail pun since June.

  133. Ryan says:

    Guys, I’m in south Florida on my cough honeymoon. I have a MacBook Pro, iPad, HDTV, but no Apple TV or hardware to connect my laptop to the tv.

    What’s my best option for watching the game? Gamecenter live on the laptop? Is it really free?

  134. Lewko says:

    Ryan,

    Ryan,

    I signed up at hockeystreams. On vacation as well. Works really well, but not free. 12.50 for a week. not much and you get all the hockey you want.

  135. spoiler says:

    khildahl: Great (and thanks). I think we’ve all been waiting for Gene’s Hemmer and Nail pun since June.

    We need to set the Over-Under on this

  136. Lowetide says:

    Fewer than 20 words before he drops it.

  137. khildahl says:

    But will he be holding them when he does it? He does like his props.

  138. jb says:

    Why does sportsnet have an audio feed but no video feed? Is it just me or does everyone have to put up with this BS.

  139. Derek says:

    I’ve watched the majority of the flames game and I haven’t had any issues? On Shaw cable in Lethbridge.

  140. khildahl says:

    jb,

    It’s all working fine for me.

  141. leadfarmer says:

    Thanks guys for the input. I called comcast and seems to be an issue with my receiver. So no game for me tonight. If you find a website that is streaming the game please let me know.

  142. jb says:

    I watched the first two periods of the flames game just fine… then video cuts out, now audios dead. On the secondary feeds I can hear the pittsburgh game but can’t see it… Every other channel except sportsnet works just fine on Shaw. WTF is this.

    Why now?

  143. Professor Q says:

    Do you know if the game will be televised in Ontario? Or will I have to stream a feed?

  144. icecastles says:

    khildahl,

    You should follow Principe’s Twitter feed. Believe me: he holds back when he’s on TV when compared to his tweets. It’s pure gold.

    And I’m pretty sure he’s dropped the hammer/nail one a couple times already in text.

  145. DBO says:

    Funny:

    Rob Tychkowski ‏@SUN_TYCHKOWSKI
    Good thing about Oilers opening the season in Vancouver is that Daryl Katz gets to see his team play live

  146. khildahl says:

    San Jose slept through 30 minutes of that game, They could be a handful on Tuesday.

  147. James says:

    jb,

    Yep, exact same thing happened here.

  148. jb says:

    its a Christmas miracle! came back on with 2 minutes to spare!

  149. Matt.N says:

    These NFL playoff games, last weekend and this one, have been spectacular.

    Now to begin overworking the “LAST” button on my remote.

  150. Derek says:

    Good god this Hockey Central panel aches.

  151. James says:

    jb,

    Huzzah! Me too!

  152. delooper says:

    Getting excited!

  153. Derek says:

    Holy shit hes got a nail. Ahahah here we go.

  154. remlap says:

    Well, there it is. I can’t say I missed Geno.

  155. icecastles says:

    Well, there’s the hammer!
    (edit) and the nail. How can people hate this guy?

  156. Matt.N says:

    It only took Gene about 10 seconds to work in the Nail pun.

    Mid season form

  157. Lucinius says:

    Ugh. My hockeystreams feed is the Vancouver feed. Woe unto me.

  158. khildahl says:

    Jesus, Geno. Save some for the other 47 games.

  159. delooper says:

    Justin “the hammer” Schultz it is, apparently!

  160. dessert1111 says:

    leadfarmer:
    Thanks guys for the input.I called comcast and seems to be an issue with my receiver.So no game for me tonight.If you find a website that is streaming the game please let me know.

    http://atdhe.so/watch.php?id=570824

  161. Gerta Rauss says:

    I’ve got Shorthouse and Garrett on the West Coast on Shaw.

  162. delooper says:

    This stream is okay, too. Sometimes a bit choppy: http://directtv.me/stream16.html

  163. Lowetide says:

    Come the hell on! These commercials are taking forever! and now the dog wants to go outside!

  164. Lucinius says:

    Psht. Vancouver doing the Edmonton anthem trick. Almost fell through!

    And wow, is their anthem singing bad. Not ‘screwed up’ bad, but just.. bad.

  165. khildahl says:

    Did someone goose that anthem singer at the end?

  166. DBO says:

    Anthem dude. Really? WTF was that at the end of the the anthem. God you suck Vancouver

  167. khildahl says:

    I was wondering how long I would be able to hold onto this:

    Someone should tell the Canucks you’re supposed to dive into water that isn’t frozen.

  168. Lowetide says:

    Hall for a trip and we’re on the PK. Keep that kid line away from the Sedins pleaese

  169. spoiler says:

    Hall 2 minutes for Sedin not being able to skate.

  170. Lucinius says:

    Hall! Don’t give them powerplays. Bad star!

  171. spoiler says:

    Horrible penalty call.

  172. striatic says:

    never too early to practice the PK.

  173. Lowetide says:

    Potter with a nice clear there and tough along the boards. PK looks sound through 90 seconds, and then shaky through the last 30.

  174. spoiler says:

    Nice stop for Doobie on the stuke play. Anderson and Messier used to run that.

  175. Lucinius says:

    That penalty will always be called, right or wrong. Stick in the feet when the guy goes down its always going to get called. Usually the right call.

  176. spoiler says:

    Real smart pick by the Yak, to keep that shift alive.

  177. Lowetide says:

    Nice shift for the Gagner line there, lots of skill but timing a little off. Need some flow.

  178. striatic says:

    i love Yakupov coming off, and Hall coming on.

  179. jb says:

    The puck movement and overall control is well on it’s way. It’s early but not much panic in the back either. Lookin good!

  180. spoiler says:

    Lucinius: That penalty will always be called, right or wrong. Stick in the feet when the guy goes down its always going to get called. Usually the right call.

    Wasn’t “in” the feet. Sedin blew a tire. Bad call.

  181. khildahl says:

    Thank you, Eager. Keep hitting that guy like that all night.
    EDIT: Yes! It was Burrows! The sentence above x2!

  182. Lowetide says:

    HORCOFF!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  183. delooper says:

    Not a bad start at all. Oilers look like they’re going to be as-advertised.

  184. Lucinius says:

    I can think of so many other Oilers I would want instead of Horcoff with that opportunity, haha.

  185. icecastles says:

    The elder statesmen get closest yet of anyone. Nice to see.
    (watching in a 10 t-shirt and a 94 jersey)

  186. JohnnyRocket says:

    I want the vets to score this season. Horcoff!!!

  187. Lucinius says:

    spoiler,

    Didn’t say it was a good call; just that it will always get called. Its nothing new. Stick in or even touching the skates and a guy goes down? Always called.

  188. striatic says:

    Horcoff and Smyth look MUCH better against 4th liners than against first liners.

  189. icecastles says:

    striatic:
    Horcoff and Smyth look MUCH better against 4th liners than against first liners.

    Meaning that *good* players look better against first liners than fourth???

  190. voxwah says:

    Man I hate listening to John Garrett. Ugh..what a douche

  191. striatic says:

    icecastles,

    sure, why not? if they succeed, they look more impressive than if they succeed against 4th liners.

  192. JohnnyRocket says:

    Petrell with the blueline giveaway. Oh, the 4th line!

  193. leadfarmer says:

    Thanks for the feed.

  194. Lowetide says:

    We’re well into this game and I’m not seeing scoring chances. Not a good sign. The Canucks aren’t a threat unless the Sedins are out there but that’s going to be a loss unless the Oil need to get something going here.

  195. Lowetide says:

    Harski with a wonderful play there defensively.

  196. Lowetide says:

    And there you go, some nice passing by the Gagner line gets the Oilers a powerplay. Yakupov looks very nice to me.

  197. leadfarmer says:

    Nice play YAkitty Yak

  198. spoiler says:

    I’m cheerin for you Aurie!!

  199. icecastles says:

    striatic:
    icecastles,

    sure, why not? if they succeed, they look more impressive than if they succeed against 4th liners.

    Pretty sure a goal is worth the same regardless of who’s on the ice.

  200. striatic says:

    great shift by Teemu on both forecheck and back check. paycheck!

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