Well, that was fun! An eventful 6-game road trip that went 0-3-1 before ending 2-0-0 and 2-3-1 overall. After much fretting and gnashing of teeth, I’ll take it!
The Corsi for the road trip faded as time rolled along, and the club lost some players along the way (boy did they) but it was a compelling, character building road trip. And they survived! Taylor Hall is out for a month, that’s bad news. If Nail Yakupov can settle the hell down on the 1line, and veterans Hemsky, Perron and Gordon can continue their brilliant play, then Nuge-Ebs may be able to lead this group CLOSER to the playoffs during Hall’s time away.
Anton Belov. What the hell?
CORSI FOR %, GAMES 1-10 (DEFENSEMEN)
- Anton Belov 49.6
- Jeff Petry 47.9
- Justin Schultz 45.9
- Andrew Ference 45.1
- Nick Schultz 43.8
- Ladislav Smid 42.9
- Denis Grebeshkov 26.7
I’m not sure how Extra Skater does their qual comp, but it looks like Smid and Petry are facing the toughs and the rest are kind of equal in terms of quality opp.
Dallas Eakins was hilarious in the post-game in his comments about Lars Eller (““When you have a player like Eller running his mouth before the game, it makes for great banter in our room and great motivation”), but that’s going to rankle a few. GOOD!
Devan Dubnyk has a .935 SP and is 2-1 in his last three games. Since I was quick to suggest MacT look for other options (and, as it turned out, he did) it would be bad form to go another day without pointing out how well he’s played this week.
I do wonder if MacT is satisfied with the team overall. Elliotte Friedman’s article the other day pointed out that MacT was kicking tires on goaltending AND defense, so there may be something brewing. Mobility and puck moving ability, along with positioning are big parts of the Eakins way, and some of the Oiler blue aren’t adjusting well. We’ll see how it goes.
I’d like more information on the Taylor Hall injury. Four weeks is great, but is that 4 firm, or 4 and maybe more? It’s a worry.
Tyler Pitlick is the 10th Stu MacGregor pick to play in the NHL (MBS started the head job in time for the 2008 draft). Here’s the entire (impressive) list by GP:
- Jordan Eberle 204, 71-93-164
- Taylor Hall 180, 68-85-153
- Magnus Paajarvi 165, 26-32-58
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 109, 26-56-82
- Nail Yakupov 55, 17-15-32
- Teemu Hartikainen 52, 6-7-13
- Anton Lander 67, 2-5-7
- Phil Cornet 2, 0-1-1
- Johan Motin 1, 0-0-0
- Tyler Pitlick 1, 0-0-0
The ‘four’ of Eberle, Hall, RNH and Yakupov are insane talents. The ‘rest’ are Paajarvi at the top end–I like this guy and believe he’s going to have an excellent career–and two ‘maybe’ players in Lander and Hartikainen in the middle, followed by the ‘cup of coffee’ trio of Cornet, Motin and the new arrival. How far up the ladder does Pitlick need to go before he’d be considered a success? This was a high pick–#31 overall–so, I think 200 NHL games is the line. Fair? First pick in the second round? You have to believe that player is going to be a future starter for three seasons, at least I believe that’s fair.
LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE
Scheduled to appear on TSN 1260 (beginning at 10):
- Michael Parkatti from Boys on the Bus. We’ll talk about last night’s game, the trials of the road trip, and what to do about Hall’s absence.
- Paul Rai Director of Vimy Lacrosse Academy. We’ll talk about the sport and the value of playing lacrosse for hockey players.
- Bruce McCurdy from Cult of Hockey. We’ll talk Belov and the blue, Oilers callups and the Arcobello.
- Corey Graham from the Edmonton Oil Kings. OK are on the road to SK, we’ll talk about the early season struggles.
- Paul Almeida from Azorcan Global. Paul is going to pass along details of an exciting soccer trip!
10-1260 via text and @Lowetide_ on twitter. Stay tuned!