STARS AT OILERS, G13 (12-13) 12.2.13

The Oilers leading scorer is a guy they liked so much the press release for his 1-year contract read like a spanking, and their leading goal scorer is a guy management was fixing to have walk the plank before Taylor Hall mentioned he hoped they kept him. If Mr. Magoo managed an NHL team, what team would it be?

On Sportsnet this weekend Gene was telling the story about Sam Gagner meeting Justin Schultz at a college party (there were girls there being thrown in the air, suspect there might have been jocularity) and lobbying Schultz to sign with the Oilers instead of southern California (that’s an ice-to-Eskimos task 89 managed btw).

We also saw Ryan Smyth look like Wayne Cashman about 1983, Gagner-Hemsky good and bad and a gifted PP that simply refused to use the neutral zone as anything more than a stage to try to do it all alone. Remember the SC run in 2006 when the Oilers were having the same trouble? Someone (Peca?) sent the puck to an area and Radek Dvorak got momentum in over the line and won the zone and a goal. Or what about earlier this season, when Gagner cut to the middle and sent the puck on a tee to Hemsky while also moving the defender over just a little? These are smart men, they’ll figure it out.

Let it be tonight, and let it be against Dallas. Why? Because Mike Modano, because Mike Keane because Ed Belfour and because that freak Hatcher. Because 1998, because 1999, because 2000, because 2001, because 2003.

I don’t really know why Minnesota didn’t win a Stanley way back there somewhere. They had great players–Ciccarelli was a terrific player, maybe the most hated great scorer in the game’s history; Neal Broten, playmaker, skilled, smart, great on faceoffs; Sam’s Dad Dave Gagner who was a fine 2-way player. One thing, they always made strange choices for coach–Bill Mahoney, Lorne Henning, Herb Brooks, Pierre Page–on it went. Finally, Bob Gainey came in and then he got the GM’s job and hired Hitchcock. Modano was a killer, a cold hearted killer. Man. What a player.

Oilers waived Darcy Hordichuk yesterday, suspect Chris VandeVelde will be recalled as a special favor to PJ Stock. I don’t have anything against Hordichuk or Steve MacIntyre or any of those folk, they earn a living in the toughest way possible and no one has a right to take your dream away. I’m in my 50s and spent a long stretch of my life enjoying boxing and a good hockey fight, but a smart man once told me “once you know, you know” and man that’s a fact isn’t it. Reg Fleming and Bob Probert are gone, hey we didn’t have the information that is now available. Once you know, you know.

NORTHERN EXPOSURE

Oilers have a nifty home stand beginning tonight but they always play like crap and corruption first game home. So, I’m going opposite George today–tea instead of coffee, different route to work,  vodka instead of vermouth at lunch, I’ll put in a full day–I mean completely opposite! Suggest you do the same.

Dallas GM Joe Nieuwendyk received some praise from new Oiler defenemen Mark Fistric.

    • Fistric to the Dallas Morning News: “I give Joe a lot of credit, because he moved me to a place where he knew I would fit in better, and where I might have a better opportunity. I personally thanked him for that. It’s business, I know, but it’s more than that to us, so you feel good when something happens that makes things better for you.”

nw captrue1

 

Oilers at the quarter pole are just about where they should be and there are some good signs. Ralph Krueger has benched and scratched veterans, moved #1 overalls up and down the lineup and there is a logic and a reasonable train of thought to his decisions. What’s more, the organization has shown–Fistric deal, Hordichuk waiver–they are more proactive than in the past.

What they need to do now is get a defenseman. An NHL defenseman. An actual NHL player defenseman. I’d prefer a puck mover, but if he can PK that’s good too.

I’m always rambling on about trades, and if this team made one this week to address defense then I would begin to believe they’re actually interesting in the standings. It’ll be fun to have management join the fans and players in the passion and pursuit of excellence.

It’s been a long time.

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378 Responses to "STARS AT OILERS, G13 (12-13) 12.2.13"

« Older Comments
  1. 48 percent body fat says:

    Hall and Nuge have not peaked. The argument for Eberle peaking in terms of point production or goal production could be true. However this does not mean that he regresses. He could stay at a peak for a few years. Any one have an issues with Eberle peaking at 35g and 40as, and doing that consistantly for 6 years.

  2. Woodguy says:

    No slow plodding lines or slow tentative Dmen either.

    Fun to watch.

    Even Eager-VV-IsMental are creating a good forecheck.

    Every line has had quality forecheck so far.

    Hope the keep it going.

    Zone exits and entries are a world away from the last 2 games.

  3. striatic says:

    regwald,

    but he’s our MVP!

  4. Ducey says:

    Is Hemsky ok? He got crushed behind the Dallas net with about 2 minutes left.

  5. DenverOilFan says:

    We look a lot faster this game without Captain slow and Whitney…I’m just sayin’. Oh ya, Howson fired. It’s a shame. Seems like he was about to successfully pull off a Milbury.

  6. Woodguy says:

    48 percent body fat:
    Hall and Nuge have not peaked. The argument for Eberle peaking in terms of point production or goal production could be true.However this does not mean that he regresses.He could stay at a peak for a few years.Any one have an issues with Eberle peaking at 35g and 40as, and doing that consistantly for 6 years.

    One vfital piece of info that is missing when you are looking at point totals year after year is who they are playing against.

    A good example is Perry and Getzlaf in ANA.

    Played shelted minutes when the won the cup and they year after.

    Started playing the toughest comp and struggled, then came back to previous production against the best in the league.

    Lots of info missing just looking at points.

  7. BlacqueJacque says:

    Howson “relieved of his duties” in Columbus. Headline on NHL.com, which refuses to freaking load for me.

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/news.htm?id=655407&navid=nhl:topheads

  8. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy,

    So… who did the scoring for the Ducks on that run? I mean, Getzlaf and Perry weren’t exactly rookies then, were they?

  9. VanOil says:

    At no point in my life did I ever think I would see a conversation about McGuire’s during an Oilers game he is not even commentating on.

  10. Lowetide says:

    I love that the power line is Nuge-Hall-Eberle and they appeared to be miles ahead in that period I have not seen Dennis King’s scoring chances but they were good.

  11. 48 percent body fat says:

    Woodguy,

    I dont get your stance on this. My point was that point production that he may have peaked and that as a player he may not have. And even if he has peaked (remember a peak is top performance, doesnt mean you have to regress) is eberle not a good player if he puts up his peak numbers the next few years?

    I see what you are saying but I think my thoughts in regards to this matter are what you are thinking also,

  12. godot10 says:

    Bryan Murray was the GM and Dave McNab was (and still is, I think) the scout in Anaheim when a lot of that team was assembled. Bob Murray the current GM, might have spanned the Murray, Bryan Burke regimes also.

  13. jake70 says:

    Oil getting to loose pucks first tonight….good to see…supposed they are all scared to get PBd?

  14. Lowetide says:

    Yakupov wins a puck battle with authority. Teenager.

  15. BlacqueJacque says:

    Great pressure by the third line. Harski and Paajarvi like playing with each other. Attitude, confidence, driving to the net, puck battles…

  16. VanOil says:

    Lowetide:
    Yakupov wins a puck battle with authority. Teenager.

    He is Charles Bronson Jr

  17. icecastles says:

    Got tv back, in SD. I keep getting weird artifacts though. I’m constantly seeing Oilers in front of Lehtonon. Is this a glitch, or is this team actually getting the message? What a thing of beauty.

    Even if they lose tonight, I’ll be able to take it if they go down swinging and showing they can learn.

  18. tcho says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Forwards especially seem to peak in their mid-late 20s, agreed. But RNH (19), Eberle (22), and Hall (21) “peaked” is quite a stretch.

  19. Derek says:

    This shit only happens against Dallas.

  20. BlacqueJacque says:

    Can’t blame anyone for that.

    Hall and the kids with a great response of a shift. Just ugly shots from all in front of the net, lots of bodies flying.

  21. Lowetide says:

    Well that was murder. Long shift for the Eager line, maybe we won’t see them for awhile.

  22. Kris11 says:

    VV against the Star’s top line.

  23. SK Oiler Fan says:

    The hockey Gods with a big FU. Why do they hate the Oilers?

  24. striatic says:

    second fluke goal this game.

  25. VanOil says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Can’t blame anyone for that.

    The guy that installed the glass!

  26. CrazyCoach says:

    Yuck!

    Why do teams raise their hands for goals like that?

    I could see the celebration for the ultimate lucky hit, like winning Lotto Max, but a fluke goal?

  27. Kris11 says:

    Stars’s

  28. DenverOilFan says:

    Did Hemsky even try to win that faceoff??!

  29. BlacqueJacque says:

    CrazyCoach:
    Yuck!

    Why do teams raise their hands for goals like that?

    I could see the celebration for the ultimate lucky hit, like winning Lotto Max, but a fluke goal?

    Because they just tied the game?

  30. BlacqueJacque says:

    Oh my goodness this first line is just feasting on the Stars.

    Nuge’s stickhandling and the threat of his passes allows him to walk through some pretty intense opposition.

  31. Kris11 says:

    Kids can own the puck.

  32. CrazyCoach says:

    BlacqueJacque: Because they just tied the game?

    True.

  33. Lowetide says:

    The top line is the top line. Mad mad mad skills.

  34. jake70 says:

    The 93, 4, 14 line have spent very little time in their own end so far, they should have 3 or 4 goals…sheesh.

  35. Kris11 says:

    Sometimes when I see RNH, and I don’t look at the name on his jersey, I think “Now Modano plays for us”

    Ultimately, RNH probably isn’t as good with the puck as Modano, but he might end up being better without the puck.

  36. striatic says:

    Kris11: Ultimately, RNH probably isn’t as good with the puck as Modano, but he might end up being better without the puck.

    i dunno .. Modano was pretty damn good without the puck ..

  37. BlacqueJacque says:

    Somebody needs to tell Sportsnet that Benn was drafted in the fifth round, not fifth overall.

  38. Derek says:

    I was going to praise Eager for that hit in the offensive zone but then the penalty….

    Eager giveth and Eager taketh away.

  39. khildahl says:

    Stripes are playing for Dallas tonight.

  40. Kris11 says:

    Unecessary penalties can cost you the playoffs.

  41. fuzzy muppet says:

    That’s probably the last time we see Eager tonight…dumb

  42. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Eager was doing ok until that. First stupid penalty tonight

  43. Kris11 says:

    Listening on the radio and can’t follow Jack Michaels’ call. Such a tough thing to paint a picture of a hockey game as it progresses, but Michaels can’t seem to do it.

  44. BlacqueJacque says:

    How is this not a 4-1 game?

  45. hunter1909 says:

    I must be dreaming. Oilers haven’t been this good since Messier.

    Horcoff looks like an Prohibition era Irish gangster in that suit. Amazing. My blind, almost Tasmanian Devil hatred of all things Horcoff is notwithstanding tonight.

  46. Smarmy says:

    If this were a baseball team the offense would be full of sub .200 hitters. SCORE ALREADY!

  47. OilLeak says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    How is this not a 4-1 game?

    Retribution for the Columbus game.

  48. Ducey says:

    Can someone on the Oilers please hit the net??

  49. BlacqueJacque says:

    I even like the 4th line. Big bodies, speed (other than VV), attitude.

  50. VanOil says:

    Check out this deal in Dallas

    http://stars.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=86782

    Probably would get shot wearing a Oilers Jersey and getting mouthy after free drinks but for $119 it might be worth the risk and the flight. Owners parking, free food & drinks, great seats and a Piano bar after the game with premium hand rolled cigars.

  51. khildahl says:

    Lehtonen’s playing like he thinks he’s Dubnyk.

  52. SK Oiler Fan says:

    The pace of this period is great

  53. BlacqueJacque says:

    VanOil,

    Would be nice to live in a city that doesn’t care about hockey but is a key TV market. Phoenix, Dallas, LA…

  54. DenverOilFan says:

    VanOil:
    Check out this deal in Dallas

    http://stars.nhl.com/club/page.htm?id=86782

    I like how it says owner’s parking “Option”. Must mean extra $!

    Probably would get shot wearing a Oilers Jersey and getting mouthy after free drinks but for $119 it might be worth the risk and the flight. Owners parking, free food & drinks, great seats and a Piano bar after the game with premium hand rolled cigars.

  55. Lowetide says:

    Oilers are the better team tonight but it is 1-1 and this is Dallas. Back in the olden days, Mike Keane would say something like ‘lose and go home’ and the Oilers would give up some heartbreaking goal late and that’s what they’d do.

    This is what I was talking about this morning. If the dam is going to break, let it be tonight and let it be very good.

  56. Ducey says:

    The Dallas feed is fun.

    Things like:

    “Garbutt can’t swing a hammer”

    “Hall is a little casual, tries the fancy boy play”

  57. SK Oiler Fan says:

    I bet DD is getting sick of seeing the 4 line in his end all period

  58. BlacqueJacque says:

    Yeah, but LT… with today’s goalies – the size, the butterfly, always playing the percentages, and above all the ridiculous GigantoPads – if a goalie isn’t making mistakes, it is hard as hell to beat him.

    Nobody is ever going to convince me that the chest pad can’t be smaller, not flat and square like a barn door, or that the net couldn’t be an inch and a half wider and an inch taller to make up for the fact that goalies fill like 60% of the net now just sitting there.

  59. SK Oiler Fan says:

    If the Oilers could play the 3rd right now they’d win

  60. khildahl says:

    I can’t tell if this team sacrificed too many kittens or not enough. How are these pucks not going in?

  61. tcho says:

    Wow. No question the Oilers have been the better team tonight to my eye. I’ll be interested to see what the #s say.

  62. Woodguy says:

    Man 4-93-14 are just killing it tonight. More pucks in soon.

    Fucking Dallas with a Dallas goal.

    No doubt they’ll go ahead on a goal that was a missed offside.

    Assholes.

    Petry have a game that reminds me of Petry last year. Very nice.

  63. hunter1909 says:

    Lowetide: this is Dallas.

    Not anymore.

  64. Woodguy says:

    48 percent body fat,

    Just throwing more info into the mix, that’s all.

  65. hunter1909 says:

    Oilers need a wrecking ball in the slot every time Hall/Eberle/Yakupov/Hemsky are on the ice. Pajaarvi and Hartski might work.

    Phil Esposito?

  66. Woodguy says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Woodguy,

    So… who did the scoring for the Ducks on that run?I mean, Getzlaf and Perry weren’t exactly rookies then, were they?

    They were both in their 2nd year.

    They scored, but if you look, Perry was 12th on the team in TOI

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?fetchKey=20073ANASASALL&sort=avgTOIPerGame&viewName=summary

    They weren’ taking on the toughs.

    They had Pahlsson, Marchant, Neidermeyer, Selanne, McDonald….

    Here’s the EVTOI/gm for the playoffs for that team:

    http://www.nhl.com/ice/playerstats.htm?fetchKey=20073ANASASALL&sort=avgEvenStrengthTOIPerGame&viewName=timeOnIce

    Nice team.

    Balanced.

  67. Kris11 says:

    Hall with 9 shots in two periods. Impressive.

  68. hunter1909 says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    That’s why I always ignore the “goalies blew in the 80′s” chestnut. The gear they wear today is ridiculous.

    *Gump Worsley fan*

  69. SK Oiler Fan says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Yeah, but LT… with today’s goalies – the size, the butterfly, always playing the percentages, and above all the ridiculous GigantoPads – if a goalie isn’t making mistakes, it is hard as hell to beat him.

    Nobody is ever going to convince me that the chest pad can’t be smaller, not flat and square like a barn door, or that the net couldn’t be an inch and a half wider and an inch taller to make up for the fact that goalies fill like 60% of the net now just sitting there.

    agreed. Best thing they could do would be to reduce the height of the goalie shoulder pads such that going down on every shot results in the top of the net opening up.
    The length of the pads don’t need to go up to their armpits either. can’t remember the last time I saw a clear shot 5 hole goal

  70. Woodguy says:

    Lowetide:
    Oilers are the better team tonight but it is 1-1 and this is Dallas. Back in the olden days, Mike Keane would say something like ‘lose and go home’ and the Oilers would give up some heartbreaking goal late and that’s what they’d do.

    This is what I was talking about this morning. If the dam is going to break, let it be tonight and let it be very good.

    Lehtinen would get a cheap one off a turn over on the forecheck with 5 min to go and it would stand up.

    Assholes.

  71. khildahl says:

    The shot clock says shots are 27-18 for the good guys, 10-9 in the first and 16-9 in the second.

    That’s generous toward the Stars as the Rexall stats guy is pulling his usual nonsense (I.e.: half the Oiler shots don’t get counted).

  72. Woodguy says:

    SK Oiler Fan,

    The length of the pads don’t need to go up to their armpits either. can’t remember the last time I saw a clear shot 5 hole goal

    5 hole doesn’t exist anymore.

    The way the pads flatten out when the goal is on his knees eliminates it.

    Goalie equipment is the one thing the really need to change.

    Or make the net bigger.

    Goals are fun.

  73. Lowetide says:

    Come on, Oilers. Wildly entertaining game but I’ll sleep better with a regulation win.

    Taylor Hall has NINE shots. Wow.

  74. PunjabiOil says:

    9 shots on goal by \Hall after 40.

    Lordy.

  75. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Woodguy,

    15 years ago 5 hole was a good shot. Now it’s a bad goal

  76. hunter1909 says:

    It’s basically cheating when goalie pads are cut like perfect rectangles which blocks 100% of the ice, in theory.

    It’s like a baseball hitter being allowed to divert the pitch into a cannon.

  77. Lowetide says:

    And there’s the goal. Crap. This has been happening for 15 years.

  78. BlacqueJacque says:

    God fucking damn these god damned fucking Dallas fucking Stars and their fucking bullshit goals.

  79. Woodguy says:

    Oh fuck off Dallas.

    Assholes.

  80. regwald says:

    Hawks lose in a SO to the ducks. Still without a regulation loss after 13 games. WOW.

    And 10 of those game on the road.

  81. DenverOilFan says:

    Are you kidding me? The only time the 1st line has been hemmed in their zone and then that. I’m thinking the Nuge scored that?

  82. Kris11 says:

    Good luck in Columbus, bad luck in Dallas. All comes out in the wash.

    Still a period to even it up and take it to overtime.

  83. hunter1909 says:

    I’ll be happy with an OT loss.

  84. striatic says:

    it was a lot easier to lose to Dallas when they earned it.

  85. Kris11 says:

    Yeah, really if you remember the chance totals, there wasn’t a playoff game against Dallas that Edmonton deserved to win.

  86. khildahl says:

    Mike Modano is laughing his fucking ass off in the chipmunk retirement home right now.

    Fuck.

  87. DenverOilFan says:

    regwald:
    Hawks lose in a SO to the ducks. Still without a regulation loss after 13 games. WOW.

    And 10 of those game on the road.

    Is the American Brier in Chicago right now, or just a scheduling quirk? ;-)

  88. regwald says:

    DenverOilFan,

    Maybe … lol it’s a heck of a way to start a season that’s for sure.

  89. Kris11 says:

    Didn’t Belanger used to get some goals before he played in Edmonton? Poor guy.

  90. jake70 says:

    Can’t buy a goal.

  91. striatic says:

    Kris11: Didn’t Belanger used to get some goals before he played in Edmonton? Poor guy.

    around 13 a season, yeah.

    he’s a lot older now though.

  92. BlacqueJacque says:

    Jagr is how old? 42? Beast.

  93. Kris11 says:

    No more 4th line please.

  94. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Not smart rk. I don’t care if it started in the o zone. 4 line vs Benn line never a good idea

  95. hunter1909 says:

    Gagner knocked down alright, by that Dallas stick that lifted his foot.

  96. Clay says:

    Oilers deserve to win this game as much as they didn’t deserve to win in CBJ.

  97. Kris11 says:

    Potter sucks, but is better than Whitney. Sad.

  98. Lowetide says:

    I expect we’ll see a lot of the Nuge line in these last minutes.

  99. Kris11 says:

    Yakupov must emerge now.

  100. hunter1909 says:

    Another nail biter coming up. Who would have thunk it?

  101. BlacqueJacque says:

    I can’t quite place Yakupov’s skating style. Low to the ice, but not like Nuge… not scanning the ice. More predatory. I really don’t know who it reminds me of, but it’s an itch I can’t scratch. Help?

  102. Clay says:

    Petry jumping up a lot more this game.

  103. striatic says:

    BlacqueJacque: I can’t quite place Yakupov’s skating style. Low to the ice, but not like Nuge… not scanning the ice. More predatory. I really don’t know who it reminds me of, but it’s an itch I can’t scratch. Help?

    Bure?

  104. CrazyCoach says:

    BlacqueJacque: God fucking damn these god damned fucking Dallas fucking Stars and their fucking bullshit goals.

    They went ahead in the game didn’t they?

  105. Lowetide says:

    This is the best part of sports. Logic and reason tell us the Oilers should score here, but logic and reason are mere possibilities in hockey.

  106. DenverOilFan says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Maybe a honeybadger crossed with a ninja. Or maybe a Liger. Speed and stealth.

  107. BlacqueJacque says:

    Oh Nuge, you gotta shoot that high.

  108. Kris11 says:

    Nuge looks like Modano, but Dallas has Cujo.

  109. hunter1909 says:

    Dallas dive.

    Oh shit.

  110. fuzzy muppet says:

    Come on NUge. Put one home!!!!!!!!!!!!!! wide open net and he can’t bury it again!

  111. Rebilled says:

    What kind of animals does Dallas sacrifice before these games?

  112. Woodguy says:

    Fuck Dallas those fucking assholes.

  113. fuzzy muppet says:

    Then Yak with a stupid play. He may need to sit a night. Too many stupid plays

  114. Lowetide says:

    Jagr. Oilers lose. What a brutal loss after such fine work.

  115. striatic says:

    pure chaos.

  116. BlacqueJacque says:

    Welp, karma for the Columbus game.

    God damned bullshit going our way in Ceebeejeebee, so I can’t really complain about the bullshit going Dallas’ way here.

    At least we know our team can play.

  117. khildahl says:

    Fucking Jagr.

  118. striatic says:

    pure, pure chaos.

  119. pboy says:

    Spector will be driving Gagner directly to the airport after the game.

  120. Kris11 says:

    Same score as Columbus is fitting.

  121. CrazyCoach says:

    Wow, wonder if spending that money on Smyth could have went to Jagr?

    I’ve gotta get my groceries. No use sticking around.

  122. Clay says:

    This is the kind of game that comes at the end of a losing streak (yes, I know they won last game, but still). There is a breakout game in the very near future here, boys.

  123. BlacqueJacque says:

    And an Eberle goal against the Oilers.

    Well, this sucks.

    At least we don’t have to see an empty net. I hate empty nets.

  124. jake70 says:

    15 stopped skating on that play.

  125. striatic says:

    why aren’t the pucks going in the net for edmonton?

  126. Ice Sage says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    Welp, karma for the Columbus game.

    God damned bullshit going our way in Ceebeejeebee, so I can’t really complain about the bullshit going Dallas’ way here.

    At least we know our team can play.

    Sure, any group of guys can ‘play’, it doesn’t mean shit if they can’t score.
    Charlie Brown kicking the football again and again

  127. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Old man Shultz not a good effort there.

  128. DenverOilFan says:

    You know, the zebras could have called a couple penalties earlier for hooks on Eberle. Too little, too late.

  129. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Gotta feel for DD. I think that’s the most frustrated I’ve seen him.

  130. Gret99zky says:

    The Oilers are just about where they should be.

  131. Lowetide says:

    Well this might be a blessing in disguise. The coach should have the players full attention tomorrow and through the week. The Oilers got some bad luck but to my eye faded after the second Dallas goal.

    Which has happened before, one hopes the club can iron that wrinkle out of their future.

    Beyond that, I don’t think we can point too many fingers tonight. They have 4 defensemen and if they could add one more then we’re talking. Until then, I don’t think the players are the problem and I am encouraged by the coach.

  132. Woodguy says:

    Well moral victories are for losers, but there’s a moral victory there.

    They played one of their best games of the season in both zones and transition.

    Very disappointing in the zone exits and entries by 64-89-83. They didn’t get anything going all night and they were facing Fiddler’s line. Not world beaters.

    Its match ups like that they need to take advantage of and they didn’t.

    4-93-14 owning Benn-Jagr all night was beautiful.

    3 days off, work on the entries and exits some more.

    Lots of good stuff to build from.

  133. OilLeak says:

    Lowetide:
    Well this might be a blessing in disguise. The coach should have the players full attention tomorrow and through the week. The Oilers got some bad luck but to my eye faded after the second Dallas goal.

    Which has happened before, one hopes the club can iron that wrinkle out of their future.

    Beyond that, I don’t think we can point too many fingers tonight. They have 4 defensemen and if they could add one more then we’re talking. Until then, I don’t think the players are the problem and I am encouraged by the coach.

    One thing to add to your point LT, I’m not convinced Yak on the left wing is working out. He keeps crossing over to center and right wing consistently. It’s causing coverage issues on that line.

  134. khildahl says:

    I’m really starting to think there’s a rule in the book stating the token Oiler power play in the third is to be interrupted by a ticky-tack call in the offensive zone.

  135. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    fucking dallas fuck. same old crap with this team. every damn game is a heartbreaker. every damn one.

    I can’t wait to hear what the Specters of the world will say lost us this game… something tells me “variance” or even “luck” won’t get mentioned much… crap crap crap crap crap

  136. jake70 says:

    Man I wonder if Yakupov should not be on his normal wing. He just looks lost much of the time. They did that with Eric Cole if I recall correctly.

  137. Ice Sage says:

    Lowetide:
    Well this might be a blessing in disguise. The coach should have the players full attention tomorrow and through the week. The Oilers got some bad luck but to my eye faded after the second Dallas goal.

    Which has happened before, one hopes the club can iron that wrinkle out of their future.

    Beyond that, I don’t think we can point too many fingers tonight. They have 4 defensemen and if they could add one more then we’re talking. Until then, I don’t think the players are the problem and I am encouraged by the coach.

    Love your optimism, LT.
    Just too young and too nice / cerebral a team. Who’s bringing the killer instinct? We haven’t seen it this year. Maybe they just expect the ballyhoo’ed greatness to magically happen… that’s the vibe I get watching this team ‘play’.

  138. icecastles says:

    BlacqueJacque: How is this not a 4-1 game?

    You asked too soon. Though I suspect this isn’t quite what you meant. :(

  139. BlacqueJacque says:

    OilLeak: One thing to add to your point LT, I’m not convinced Yak on the left wing is working out.He keeps crossing over to center and right wing consistently.It’s causing coverage issues on that line.

    OilLeak, you …. I have tears in my eyes (allergies, I admit, but real tears are welling up) – you make me so happy.

    Finally someone else noticed and didn’t chalk it up to Yak wanting to take a shot.

    That said, he was better about staying in his zone the past few games.

  140. Woodguy says:

    fuzzy muppet:
    Then Yak with a stupid play.He may need to sit a night.Too many stupid plays

    I’m starting to think maybe RK should switch out 58 or 91 for 64 on that line.

    They get nothing going down low and 64 could be anywhere on the ice and 83 and 89 don’t seem to know where he’s going.

    He’s a rookie, he’ll get it, but maybe the Oilers need to win a few games here.

  141. BlacqueJacque says:

    Ice Sage: Love your optimism, LT.
    Just too young and too nice / cerebral a team.Who’s bringing the killer instinct?We haven’t seen it this year.Maybe they just expect the ballyhoo’ed greatness to magically happen… that’s the vibe I get watching this team ‘play’.

    Were we watching the same game?

    The first line was swarming the Stars – no matter who the Stars put on the ice. The second line had great chances. The third line held its own and then some. Even the fourth line had some decent shifts.

    But you can’t do anything against a hot goalie in today’s NHL. Too big, too padded, too often covering all the high percentage areas (low-mid).

  142. icecastles says:

    I remember a few years ago MacT saying that when you’re coming out of a slump, you’re going to win some you don’t deserve to win and you’re going to lose some you didn’t deserve to lose. Truer words…

  143. BlacqueJacque says:

    Woodguy: I’m starting to think maybe RK should switch out 58 or 91 for 64 on that line.

    They get nothing going down low and 64 could be anywhere on the ice and 83 and 89 don’t seem to know where he’s going.

    He’s a rookie, he’ll get it, but maybe the Oilers need to win a few games here.

    They could play him on the right. I mean, if anything, it’s Hemmer who has the experience in the league to at least know how to play left.

  144. Lowetide says:

    “In Columbus we didn’t deserve to win & didn’t play well, way we played tonight is going to win us games.” – Hall

    I quite like this young man.

  145. Woodguy says:

    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I can’t wait to hear what the Specters of the world will say lost us this game… something tells me “variance” or even “luck” won’t get mentioned much… crap crap crap crap crap

    Oiler’s won a ton of puck battles tonight but that myopic xenophobe will be going on and on about large men again.

  146. Ribs says:

    “”I wanted to get more pucks on net. That’s the reason I scored that goal. We need to continue to do more of that.” – Hall continued”

    I like it, too. I like it a lot.

  147. Ribs says:

    That was a fun game to watch. 36 shots, 26 hits, 53% on the dots. That’s more like it! They’ll win way more than they lose if they can keep that up.

  148. khildahl says:

    Woodguy:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I can’t wait to hear what the Specters of the world will say lost us this game… something tells me “variance” or even “luck” won’t get mentioned much… crap crap crap crap crap

    Oiler’s won a ton of puck battles tonight but that myopic xenophobe will be going on and on about large men again.

    I’m told Spector is about as respected as Damien Cox among hockey circles (which is to say “not at all”). Can’t say I’m surprised to hear it.

  149. Ice Sage says:

    BlacqueJacque: Were we watching the same game?

    The first line was swarming the Stars – no matter who the Stars put on the ice.The second line had great chances.The third line held its own and then some.Even the fourth line had some decent shifts.

    But you can’t do anything against a hot goalie in today’s NHL.Too big, too padded, too often covering all the high percentage areas (low-mid).

    I did see most of it, thanks. Oilers were the better team, for sure EXCEPT FOR FINISHING. DD is a better G than Lehtonen so I don’t give the Oil a pass on that basis (big goalie excuse). My point is that this is starting to smell like when a talented young football team has a ‘red zone problem’. It hasn’t been just this game, either – by all predictions and hopeful talk on these boards, we’re all waiting for them to ‘break out’… but it’s not happening. Makes it real easy for the mediocre teams to hang around and do what Dallas did tonight

  150. hags9k says:

    I sense a slight bit of hesitation in Nuge’s game. He’s not quite right and I’m a bit worried.

    Tough luck for Dubnyk, he was pretty damn sharp again tonight but then fluke,fluke, Jagr…

    Hemmer took the night off. Yak looking like a rookie.

    I thought there were a few iffy non calls at 2-1 that might have got us another PP.

    Tough loss but this team will break out soon. There needs to be one more notch turned up on the desperation around their net.

  151. Woodguy says:

    Gagner’s and Hemsky’s WOWY 5v5 are awful.

    I think this is missing the last two games, but they were not good in either.

    Hemsky:

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=398&withagainst=true&season=2012-13&sit=5v5

    Gagner:

    http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/showplayer.php?pid=399&withagainst=true&season=2012-13&sit=5v5

    Anything below 45% is below NHL replacement.

    Small sample, but terrible.

  152. BlacqueJacque says:

    You do know that finishing has a lot to do with luck?

    Coaches don’t say “throw pucks on the net” because there are consistent areas you can beat goalies.

    Jagr’s goal could have just as easily ended up over the net as Eberle’s shot did, and Garbutt could have hit a pad like Nuge did.

    It’s true the Oilers missed on chances but that’s the nature of the game. The important thing is that they generated the chances.

    You know the same way we were all despondent after the Columbus win, because the Oilers sucked hard and didn’t deserve to win it, but did thanks to a few lucky shots and Dubnyk standing on his head? Well, we’re not that upset over a loss to Dallas when we played this game, just because we weren’t as lucky with our shots and Lehtonen was standing on his head.

    BTW, before this season started, I don’t imagine you’d find too many people willing to say Dubnyk was the better goalie between the two.

    Anyway, good night. I need sleep.

  153. Ribs says:

    I think these were my favourite refs so far this season. Hall could have drawn a couple more calls but I liked that they let the teams play the game.

  154. Zelepukin says:

    It’s amazing how fast the whole team looks once you take out Whitney and Smyth. I see no reason to put them back in, but given the score I expect both will slot in for the next game.

    Magnus and Harti are here to stay. Their play down low and zone entry was really clicking.

  155. hags9k says:

    Ribs,

    Yeah Ribs you are right. So far this year they have been calling absolutely everything, and it’s a bit much.

  156. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Woodguy:
    Romulus Apotheosis,

    I can’t wait to hear what the Specters of the world will say lost us this game… something tells me “variance” or even “luck” won’t get mentioned much… crap crap crap crap crap

    Oiler’s won a ton of puck battles tonight but that myopic xenophobe will be going on and on about large men again.

    Is it What’s New Pussycat, or Casino Royale where Peter Sellers is running around yelling “I like thighs!”?

    I have a feeling Specter, McGuire and Co. are channeling this.

  157. Zelepukin says:

    hags9k: I sense a slight bit of hesitation in Nuge’s game. He’s not quite right and I’m a bit worried.

    I could not disagree more. I feel like there are two kinds of people who have an opinion on Nuge. Those who look at the gamesheet and figure something is wrong with him or he is playing terrible. Then there are those who watch the games, who really know hockey well and notice the incredible patience and all the little plays that Nuge continually gets better at. He is probably one of the best players in the league on the boards and in tight.

  158. BONVIE says:

    Wow a lot of harshness for Smyth and Whitney in here. Smyth is still a warrior and he was doing a good job killing penalties, I for one am not writing off here, and this wont be the last you see of him. As for Whitney lets not go overboard saying he is no longer NHL calibre, he hasn’t been great and i don’t think he is the type of guy that can be paired up with a rookie or callup, or even capable of cracking the top four, but he is still an NHL defenseman.

  159. Suntory Hanzo says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Nostradamus!!

  160. BONVIE says:

    Woodguy: I’m starting to think maybe RK should switch out 58 or 91 for 64 on that line.

    They get nothing going down low and 64 could be anywhere on the ice and 83 and 89 don’t seem to know where he’s going.

    He’s a rookie, he’ll get it, but maybe the Oilers need to win a few games here.

    I agree spread out the size and strength to go with the goal scorers. Yak I think would do fine on the third line, may get a chance to dangle more.

  161. BONVIE says:

    BlacqueJacque,

    Its kind of a choppy stride maybe Marchant like.

  162. hags9k says:

    Zelepukin,

    I am watching and I agree he is still playing very good. He is getting in and bumping and battling but I don’t see quite as much power and aggression as usual. The passes and the quick plays in tight yes it’s all still there I just think he’s a quarter step shy right now and looks a bit conscious and wary of big contact. This is just my opinion but he did just sit a game because of his shoulder no? Or did I dream that.
    I have zero concern for his boxcars. I know they will be there he is brilliant. My concern is the shoulder problem which is whether you like it or not, real.
    Maybe he is 100% and I am suffering from hallucinations brought on by Souray paranoia.

  163. LMHF#1 says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    You do know that finishing has a lot to do with luck?

    Coaches don’t say “throw pucks on the net” because there are consistent areas you can beat goalies.

    Jagr’s goal could have just as easily ended up over the net as Eberle’s shot did, and Garbutt could have hit a pad like Nuge did.

    No it doesn’t. Not on the type of chances we had tonight.

    Coaches that say that are either playing for rebounds or are incompetent.

    Jagr’s shot was well executed and placed. It isn’t a matter of luck. You don’t just fling crap at a wall – especially if you’re Jaromir Jagr.

    Both Eberle (at the end of 2) and Hopkins (in the third) didn’t score because they didn’t go upstairs. Simple as that. Both could have and didn’t.

    Did we do a whole ton of good things tonight? Yes.

    Does that excuse the misses and second-guessing? Nope.

  164. BlacqueJacque says:

    LMHF, so you think players always put the puck where they want it? And goalies are never able to react in time to where that puck is going? And the player is never counting on the goalie being screened?

    If you really don’t think there’s any luck involved with shooting, how about the most easy, steady, reproducible shot in sports – the foul shot in basketball.

    Given the amount of practice players have at it, don’t you think – if luck isn’t involved – that every player wouldn’t get the basket every time?

    But there’s always luck. There’s always that little roll of the puck or ball that just makes it go kinda eh. There’s that muscle that twitches involuntarily. There’s the snow and ice in front of the puck, or the not-quite-exact spot off the fingers the ball rolls off.

    Luck.

  165. Ice Sage says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    LMHF, so you think players always put the puck where they want it?And goalies are never able to react in time to where that puck is going?And the player is never counting on the goalie being screened?

    If you really don’t think there’s any luck involved with shooting, how about the most easy, steady, reproducible shot in sports – the foul shot in basketball.

    Given the amount of practice players have at it, don’t you think – if luck isn’t involved – that every player wouldn’t get the basket every time?

    But there’s always luck.There’s always that little roll of the puck or ball that just makes it go kinda eh.There’s that muscle that twitches involuntarily.There’s the snow and ice in front of the puck, or the not-quite-exact spot off the fingers the ball rolls off.

    Luck.

    Scoring / finishing is a skill like any other. Fortunately, we’re not talking Thoreson or JFJ here: these players have scoring execution skills and history. 3 days, 2000 shots each on shooter-tutors, we’ll see that shooting % ‘regress to the mean’ and we’ll be talking about how ‘good players make their own luck’.

  166. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    Ice Sage: Scoring / finishing is a skill like any other.Fortunately, we’re not talking Thoreson or JFJ here: these players have scoring execution skills and history.3 days, 2000 shots each on shooter-tutors, we’ll see that shooting % ‘regress to the mean’ and we’ll be talking about how ‘good players make their own luck’.

    Not sure why you two seem to assume luck and shot selection/accuracy are mutually exclusive.

    It seems undeniable that some shooters are better than others at picking their shots.

    It is equally undeniable that all shooters are subject to variance… even good ones.

  167. LMHF#1 says:

    BlacqueJacque:
    LMHF, so you think players always put the puck where they want it?And goalies are never able to react in time to where that puck is going?And the player is never counting on the goalie being screened?

    If you really don’t think there’s any luck involved with shooting, how about the most easy, steady, reproducible shot in sports – the foul shot in basketball.

    Given the amount of practice players have at it, don’t you think – if luck isn’t involved – that every player wouldn’t get the basket every time?

    But there’s always luck.There’s always that little roll of the puck or ball that just makes it go kinda eh.There’s that muscle that twitches involuntarily.There’s the snow and ice in front of the puck, or the not-quite-exact spot off the fingers the ball rolls off.

    Luck.

    Not “always put(ting) the puck where (you) want it” does not mean that you were cast asunder by mythical forces of the universe. That makes zero sense. Do you get “unlucky” when putting one foot in front of the other and fall down? No. Does a golfer blame “luck” when he misses his intended path/clubface angle by a fraction of a degree and the shot doesn’t come off perfectly? No.

    The goalie being screened and the goalie’s ability are more elements of skill for consideration. That’s got nothing to do with luck. Where is this coming from? The goalie is not some random chaos machine, flailing about. You match your brains and skill to his and someone wins. Most of the time it is the one who made the better decision and executed what he wanted to do. If one of the participants fails to perform the physical task that would result in winning the little battle (say, not shooting the puck in the top of the net when the goalie took away the bottom) that isn’t luck, that’s either a bad choice or a failure to do what you wanted with the puck.

    It makes no sense that any basketball player ever would be able to make every foul shot. The body is not a perfect machine. Nor is the mind. It is also not firing on luck cylinders.

    You know the ice is snowy. You know certain bounces are possible (the bottom of the boards at Joe Louis for instance). You screwed up if the ball didn’t leave the correct portion of the fingers.

    This could be semantic regarding our individual understanding of what the term “luck” means…but there was none of it in what you spoke of. Just inputs. Inputs that are either controlled to the best of one’s ability or judged to the best of one’s ability.

    Does weird stuff happen? Yep. That first goal was utterly weird. Could Dubnyk have done something to prevent it (or others on the ice for that matter)? Yes, even though we don’t expect it of him as a given. Does the Dillon get no credit for his goal? Of course not.

  168. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    LMHF#1:

    The goalie being screened and the goalie’s ability are more elements of skill for consideration. That’s got nothing to do with luck. Where is this coming from? The goalie is not some random chaos machine, flailing about. You match your brains and skill to his and someone wins. Most of the time it is the one who made the better decision and executed what he wanted to do. If one of the participants fails to perform the physical task that would result in winning the little battle (say, not shooting the puck in the top of the net when the goalie took away the bottom) that isn’t luck, that’s either a bad choice or a failure to do what you wanted with the puck.

    So… basically the autonomous individual reigns… enjoy your fantasy of sovereign control!

  169. LMHF#1 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: So… basically the autonomous individual reigns… enjoy your fantasy of sovereign control!

    The presence of other forces does not dictate that the outcome of an event is based on luck.

    How do you walk down the street in the whirling vortex of the universe?

  170. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    LMHF#1: The presence of other forces does not dictate that the outcome of an event is based on luck.

    How do you walk down the street in the whirling vortex of the universe?

    Are you so wedded to your assumptions of mastery that the idea of “forces” other than the ones you code as “yourself” are deemed the “whirling vortex of the universe”?

    We don’t need to wade into the thorny issues of what empirical psychology has to say about agency and willing

    http://books.google.ca/books/about/The_Illusion_of_Conscious_Will.html?id=eQnlRg56piQC

    or what moral theory has to say about luck

    http://books.google.ca/books?id=wMGW2Ehldp8C&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

    (those are contested arguments to be sure) to acknowledge a simply point about variance.

    Expected results (i.e., the team with higher scoring chances will score more and win more) are up-ended all the time, however, they typically regress to the mean (the expected result).

    The up-ending of expectations in isolated events need not be accounted for by some nihilistic “harumph” as if the event occurred ex nihilo without cause. Nor, does the fulfilment of expectations need to be attributed to the “genius” of some masterful agent.

    These are false choices.

  171. LMHF#1 says:

    Romulus Apotheosis: Are you so wedded to your assumptions of mastery that the idea of “forces” other than the ones you code as “yourself” are deemed the “whirling vortex of the universe”?

    We don’t need to wade into the thorny issues of what empirical psychology has to say about agency and willing

    http://books.google.ca/books/about/The_Illusion_of_Conscious_Will.html?id=eQnlRg56piQC

    or what moral theory has to say about luck

    http://books.google.ca/books?id=wMGW2Ehldp8C&printsec=frontcover#v=onepage&q&f=false

    (those are contested arguments to be sure) to acknowledge a simply point about variance.

    Expected results (i.e., the team with higher scoring chances will score more and win more) are up-ended all the time, however, they typically regress to the mean (the expected result).

    The up-ending of expectations in isolated events need not be accounted for by some nihilistic “harumph” as if the event occurred ex nihilo without cause. Nor, does the fulfilment of expectations need to be attributed to the “genius” of some masterful agent.

    These are false choices.

    The “whirling vortex” is what I imagine those that rely a great deal on luck in this and other discussions would feel if they truly considered what their approach means.

    The discussion as a whole is a broad philosophical one to be sure. I don’t particularly appreciate those who have simply concluded it is over when it comes to sports specifically. Firstly because it doesn’t seem to appreciate what is actually going on inside an athlete’s head in terms of what is being attempted. Second, because referring to what others are doing, or environmental conditions that impact the result as “luck” is quite irresponsible when there is more that could be known.

  172. Romulus Apotheosis says:

    LMHF#1: The “whirling vortex” is what I imagine those that rely a great deal on luck in this and other discussions would feel if they truly considered what their approach means.

    The discussion as a whole is a broad philosophical one to be sure. I don’t particularly appreciate those who have simply concluded it is over when it comes to sports specifically. Firstly because it doesn’t seem to appreciate what is actually going on inside an athlete’s head in terms of what is being attempted. Second, because referring to what others are doing, or environmental conditions that impact the result as “luck” is quite irresponsible when there is more that could be known.

    But luck never means the causelessness of chaos.

    Luck implies — rightly so — that the curious manner in which we tend to assign praise and blame to agents overstates 1) the impact of an agent’s actions; and 2) the agent’s responsibility for an outcome.

    It does not imply that an outcome is without cause. Nor does it imply the agent is irrelevant to the outcome.

    There are two completing bad arguments here that I am trying to move away from:

    1) your concern: i.e., that good/bad performances will evade responsibility through a deferral to luck

    2) that good/bad performances will overstate the responsibility of a particular agent and thus overstate their apparent praise or blameworthiness.

  173. BlacqueJacque says:

    Ice Sage: Scoring / finishing is a skill like any other.Fortunately, we’re not talking Thoreson or JFJ here: these players have scoring execution skills and history.3 days, 2000 shots each on shooter-tutors, we’ll see that shooting % ‘regress to the mean’ and we’ll be talking about how ‘good players make their own luck’.

    It’s a skill, but luck plays a HUGE factor, mostly due to today’s goalies.

    You can’t beat a goalie 5-hole, unless he makes a mistake. You’re not going to beat him low, unless he makes a mistake.

    You simply can’t beat a goalie on the bottom half of the net unless he’s screened or can’t get across fast enough – and the only reason he won’t get across fast enough is if the defencemen make a mistake and don’t clear the guy by the crease. Seriously, once a goalie drops down, the bottom half of the net is out of the question. Pads cover the bottom 30%, the glove and blocker cover another 20%. His torso covers the middle. Unless you’re really close and have a quick release (a skill) and accuracy (also a skill), you won’t get the corners. If you’re further away, have a slower release, are inaccurate, or your shot is slow, he will catch/block the shot.

    This is why so many goals are garbage goals, or rely on screens, or rely on lucky bounces (like Dallas did last night).

    Compare Canadian goalies to European ones and you’ll see the difference. Canadian goalies are incredibly predictable yet highly effective. Butterfly/hybrid, drop down once they see the shot is serious. Use the posts for lateral mobility. Quick with the glove and blocker if they see the shot, but if not, the glove and blocker default to 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock positions and basically 60-70% of the net is off limits – all the likely areas (the entire middle from top to bottom, the entire bottom, most of the middle from left to right, leaving only the corners.)

    But if you shrink the pads, if you make the chest pad form-fitting (ie, round), and you make it hard (not absorbing), you get rebounds, rebounds in different directions. Drop the ridiculous shoulder pads (this isn’t World of WarCraft) and some of the top of the net becomes available. Make the leg pads actually have a five-hole, so the goalie has to use his stick. Make the net an inch and a half wider and an inch taller to compensate for the fact that the typical goalie is 6’2 instead of 5’11 now.

    Hall’s goal yesterday was the exception, as was Jagr’s.

  174. BlacqueJacque says:

    LMHF#1: The “whirling vortex” is what I imagine those that rely a great deal on luck in this and other discussions would feel if they truly considered what their approach means.

    The discussion as a whole is a broad philosophical one to be sure. I don’t particularly appreciate those who have simply concluded it is over when it comes to sports specifically. Firstly because it doesn’t seem to appreciate what is actually going on inside an athlete’s head in terms of what is being attempted. Second, because referring to what others are doing, or environmental conditions that impact the result as “luck” is quite irresponsible when there is more that could be known.

    There’s nothing philosophical about this.

    A typical person has a reaction time of about 0.5s. An athlete at his subconscious best may manage 0.30-0.35s. Throw in the vagaries of how much show is on the ice, how much the puck sticks to the snow, which way the defender/screening winger will tussle each other as they jockey for position in front of the net and which way the goalie will lean his head and when – none of that is predictable. None of it. There’s no skill involved. Just fire the god damned puck. Try to fire it high, but not too high. Fire it fast, but not so fast you lose control or the screen can’t tip it.

    Luck is everywhere. These aren’t “mythical forces of the universe” – it’s simply “there’s a bunch of random shit going on in front of the goalie, and maybe the puck will get through” – because it’s VERY rare that a goalie gets beaten clean because they have too many advantages in that regard.

  175. Ice Sage says:

    BlacqueJacque: It’s a skill, but luck plays a HUGE factor, mostly due to today’s goalies.

    You can’t beat a goalie 5-hole, unless he makes a mistake.You’re not going to beat him low, unless he makes a mistake.

    You simply can’t beat a goalie on the bottom half of the net unless he’s screened or can’t get across fast enough – and the only reason he won’t get across fast enough is if the defencemen make a mistake and don’t clear the guy by the crease.Seriously, once a goalie drops down, the bottom half of the net is out of the question.Pads cover the bottom 30%, the glove and blocker cover another 20%.His torso covers the middle.Unless you’re really close and have a quick release (a skill) and accuracy (also a skill), you won’t get the corners.If you’re further away, have a slower release, are inaccurate, or your shot is slow, he will catch/block the shot.

    This is why so many goals are garbage goals, or rely on screens, or rely on lucky bounces (like Dallas did last night).

    Compare Canadian goalies to European ones and you’ll see the difference.Canadian goalies are incredibly predictable yet highly effective.Butterfly/hybrid, drop down once they see the shot is serious.Use the posts for lateral mobility.Quick with the glove and blocker if they see the shot, but if not, the glove and blocker default to 3 o’clock and 9 o’clock positions and basically 60-70% of the net is off limits – all the likely areas (the entire middle from top to bottom, the entire bottom, most of the middle from left to right, leaving only the corners.)

    But if you shrink the pads, if you make the chest pad form-fitting (ie, round), and you make it hard (not absorbing), you get rebounds, rebounds in different directions.Drop the ridiculous shoulder pads (this isn’t World of WarCraft) and some of the top of the net becomes available.Make the leg pads actually have a five-hole, so the goalie has to use his stick.Make the net an inch and a half wider and an inch taller to compensate for the fact that the typical goalie is 6’2 instead of 5’11 now.

    Hall’s goal yesterday was the exception, as was Jagr’s.

    Thoroughly agree on the modern goaltending critique. I’ve also wondered why ‘tall goalies need tall pads’ – the limit should be 35 inches and these NBA-style tenders can reinforce their knees and offer up a five-hole.
    Oilers shooting % is terrible. Other teams with less raw talent are doing better… why do (insert name here – Luongo, Kiprusoff, Quick, Lehtonen…) “come up with their best game of the year” against Oilers… ???
    I know RFK will sort it out. Here’s hoping that when the bubble burst, this team achieves a higher level permanently – but will it happen this season?

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