Game 32 2018-19: Oilers at Jets

Ken Hitchcock has his Edmonton Oilers in a good spot after a wicked 8-2-1 run that served as his introduction (as if he needed one) to Oilers Nation. Hitchcock, who has been dealing with a roster that lacks depth, will need to find a workaround for the injury to Oscar Klefbom. The young defender is averaging 25:25 TOI this season, easily one of the top 10 totals across the NHL this season. Harry Houdini couldn’t get out of this fix, but Harry Houdini isn’t Ken Hitchcock. This should be interesting. 

THE ATHLETIC!

The Athletic Edmonton is going to bring it all season long. Proud to be part of a lineup that is ready to cover the coming year. Outstanding coverage from a large group, including Daniel Nugent-Bowman and Jonathan Willis, Lowetide, Minnia Feng and Pat McLean. If you haven’t subscribed yet, now’s your chance. Outstanding offer is here.

  • New Tyler Dellow: A look at which first lines are producing (and which ones aren’t) (Oilers content inside)
  • New Daniel Nugent-Bowman: How Connor McDavid became the world’s fastest skater. 
  • Lowetide: Contemplating Oilers roster changes as injured players prepare to return. 
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Oilers are bending, but not breaking, in one-goal games under Ken Hitchcock. 
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Kim Boutin: Amid threats, she took the short track to Canadians’ hearts. 
  • Lowetide: I have seen the future of Edmonton’s power play, and its quarterback is Evan Bouchard. Or Joel Persson. Or both! 
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 6 Prospect winter 2018: Cooper Marody
  • Jonathan Willis: Ken Hitchcock’s turnaround of the Oilers takes another positive step as they climb back to a playoff pace. 
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 5 Prospect winter 2018: Ethan Bear.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 4 Prospect winter 2018: Ryan McLeod.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 3 Prospect winter 2018: Tyler Benson.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 2 Prospect winter 2018: Kailer Yamamoto.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 1 Prospect winter 2018: Evan Bouchard.

OILERS AFTER 32

  • Oilers in 201514-16-2, 30 points; goal differential -9
  • Oilers in 2016: 15-12-5, 35 points; goal differential +4
  • Oilers in 2017: 13-17-2, 28 points; goal differential -10
  • Oilers in 2018: 17-12-2, 36 points; goal differential +2

The 2018 Oilers are facing a difficult moment, with games against the Jets, Flyers and Vancouver over the next four days. What’s reasonable? 1-1-1? Important to gain some points over the rest of this week, despite being shorthanded. In other words, Edmonton needs to be better by some margin than they were against Dallas sans McDavid. 

OILERS IN DECEMBER

  • Oilers in December 2015: 6-1-0, 12 points; goal differential +5
  • Oilers in December 2016: 3-1-3, nine points; goal differential +2
  • Oilers in December 2017: 4-3-0, eight points; goal differential +5
  • Oilers in December 2018: 5-1-0, 10 points; goal differential +7

A strong run in December has been a joy for the organization and the fans, Klefbom’s injury has to be overcome but there’s something notable happening here. Does it have sustain?

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM DECEMBER

  • At home to: Vegas (Expected 0-1-0) Actual (1-0-0)
  • On the road to: Dallas, St. Louis (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 1-1-0)
  • At home to: Minnesota, Calgary(Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 2-0-0)
  • On the road to: Colorado, Winnipeg (Expected 1-1-0) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • At home to: Philadelphia (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Vancouver (Expected 1-0-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: St. Louis, Tampa Bay, Vancouver, San Jose, Winnipeg (Expected 2-2-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 7-6-1, 15 points in 14 games 
  • Current results: 5-1-0, 10 points in six games

I had tonight as a win, no doubt influenced by one of my favourite games by the Oilers this season. A win tonight and Edmonton will have secured 12 of the 14 points I projected for December—with seven games remaining! Insanity. Heresy. 

GOT A FEELING CALLED THE BLUES

Apparently the St. Louis Blues have lost their heads and are prepared to trade anyone on the roster. I’m a fan of so many players on that team the mind boggles, but am prepared to limit myself to discussing Colton Parayko, Vladimir Tarasenko and Patrick Maroon. If you’re Peter Chiarelli, hell it could be one-stop shopping! Maroon is $1.75 million on a one-year, Tarasenko is $7.5 million times all the years until 2023, Parayko $5.5 million times four. 

What would it take? All of your young people, that’s my guess. It’s a sweet dream but the Oilers can’t make a trade for Parayko because the team lacks depth. Nurse & Puljujarvi would have to be cornerstones of a deal is my guess, you might get Maroon for a pick (now or deadline) and it would be a heavy price for Tarasenko that might involve one of the big four. 

TOTAL RECALL

Caleb Jones is an NHL player this morning, he’s a fast player and that’s a major calling card in the modern game. Jones can pass and has clearly learned how to defend and recognize danger. Here’s what I wrote about him summer 2017:

  1. Does he have a real chance? Jones is part of a large group of defensemen arriving at the same time in pro hockey. Superficially, he is in competition with Ziyat Paigin, Ethan Bear and Ryan Mantha. It’s possible more than one develop and all should have a chance based on resume. None have the draft pedigree to be considered ‘sure things’ in my mind, but he has a better chance than his draft number implied.
  2. What one thing will get him to the NHL? Speed. You can’t teach it, it doesn’t go into slumps and it is useful on offense and defense. Jones has it. Big advantage.

CAGGIULA

Drake Caggiula is back in the lineup, he’s a player Ken Hitchcock played heavily before the injury. Drake’s time away has given the coach a chance to see Jujhar Khaira’s skills and that could impact things as they relate to Caggiula. I expect he’ll start on the Spooner line but that may not last the evening. 

TONIGHT

There are times in life, like when your wife is giving her first public speech or your son or daughter is competing in a sports day while gifted with your genes, when you cheer like hell with a full heart and will be overwhelmed by emotion no matter the outcome. 

Then there are times when the team you follow is shorthanded on the road and playing a team hell bent for leather because you gave them a sock in the jaw in October. Cheer! Scream! Throw stuff! The boys are in tough tonight at the Gateway to the West, in Muddy Water, Manitoba. 

The boys have Ken Hitchcock and Connor McDavid. They have a chance. 

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

An impressive group of guests will arrive on your computer, transistor or car radio this morning at 10 if you tune in to TSN1260. Scheduled to appear:

  • Murat Ates, The Athletic. We’ll talk about that October 16 game that looked like a turning point in the season and the Jets since. 
  • Scott Cullen, The Athletic. We’ll chat about the Oilers under Hitchcock, regression, and candidates to have a falloff in the coming weeks. 
  • Frank Seravalli, TSN. We’ll chat Oilers without Klefbom, Flames finding a way and Flyers Flyers Flyers. 

10-1260 text, @Lowetide twitter. See you on the radio! 

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502 Responses to "Game 32 2018-19: Oilers at Jets"

« Older Comments
  1. Chief Inspector says:

    Anyone else like Drai in OT?

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    SK Oiler Fan:
    98 Way too high on the boards twice in a row

    That first time was really bad – Big Buff took full advantage.

  3. BONE207 says:

    Hockey watching & Christmas tree decorating doesn’t mix. All the stuff on the same side….damn

  4. StixMalone says:

    Nice on Talbot

  5. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Fuck Talbot. Awful.

    Hang your head in shame

  6. OmJo says:

    I blinked.

  7. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    The point is great.

    Talbot….sigh

  8. theDjdj says:

    Weak OT goal but the point is a win tbh

  9. LadiesloveSmid says:

    The astute bet would usually be to hold on to the 30YO with a strong NHL track record in net and trade the flash in the pan euro 30YO, but man I am done watching Talbot

  10. Ford Prefect says:

    So who wants to fight?

  11. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    The astute bet would usually be to hold on to the 30YO with a strong NHL track record in net and trade the flash in the pan euro 30YO, but man I am done watching Talbot

    Yeah that was a weak goal no doubt.

  12. treevojo says:

    I will take the point happily.

  13. OriginalPouzar says:

    Damn, not Talbot’s best game (which is disappointing) but Koskinen needed the night off.

  14. StixMalone says:

    Talbot is not goalering well ….

  15. unca miltie says:

    disappointed with OT outcome but lucky to have survived the third period.. now Philly on the back to back

  16. Munny says:

    I had Morrisey as a star even before he scored. What a game he had.

  17. Sierra says:

    LadiesloveSmid:
    Fuck Talbot. Awful.

    Hang your head in shame

    Remind me how many saves Talbot had in the game, in the 3rd period.

  18. BONE207 says:

    Ford Prefect:
    So who wants to fight?

    Back to Sylvan

  19. McSorley33 says:

    Can’t get mad at a point on the road….but I hope no children watched the 3rd period

  20. OmJo says:

    We took the Jets to OT with

    Nurse-Larsson
    Gravel-Benning
    Garrison-Wideman

    Considering that, I think this counts as a moral victory.

  21. treevojo says:

    Ford Prefect:
    So who wants to fight?

    Don’t make me uncancel my order of speakers, lighting and stadium seating.

  22. StixMalone says:

    Take the point, go home and rest for Philly. Koskinen will be in net and maybe Jones equipment will be there….

  23. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Not well played by Darnell in the end there, but 30 plus hard minutes

  24. jenga66 says:

    Take that point and run!!!!

  25. texmex says:

    Sierra,

    0.875 save percentage is not good enough for an nhl goalie

  26. franksterra says:

    treevojo,

    No cage?

  27. Dicky94 says:

    OmJo,

    Yepper! I’m happy with the point.

  28. npanciroli says:

    OmJo,

    100%

    I also think you can’t let Garrison play another game again and you see if Caggiula is trade-able.

  29. Munny says:

    A point! It’s a Hitchmas Miracle!

  30. OriginalPouzar says:

    Munny:
    I had Morrisey as a star even before he scored. What a game he had.

    That was the best d-man performance on McDavid since Vlasic.

  31. Bag of Pucks says:

    CrazyCoach: He’d have to steal that title from Joe Sakic

    Super Mario was pretty good at it too.

  32. OmJo says:

    We got outshot 17-2 in the third period.

    This isn’t only on Talbot.

  33. Durag says:

    I wouldn’t say Talbot played a stinker by any stretch, we were very much outplayed, but Koskinen is playing head and shoulders above him right now.

  34. texmex says:

    Go stars go!!

    If stars win in regulation, oilers are 3rd in pacific in the morning

  35. OmJo says:

    Munny:
    I had Morrisey as a star even before he scored. What a game he had.

    He had the hardest job in the league tonight and did an incredible job.

  36. treevojo says:

    franksterra:
    treevojo,

    No cage?

    I like the fans to feel like they are part of the fight.

  37. Sierra says:

    OmJo:
    We got outshot 17-2 in the third period.

    This isn’t only on Talbot.

    The Jets have 26 SCF with 14 being HDSC. 7 of those HDSC were in the 3rd. Talbot kept the Oilers in it.

  38. treevojo says:

    OriginalPouzar: That was the best d-man performance on McDavid since Vlasic.

    And he still should have had a four point night.
    The guy should win the hart every year he is in the league till further notice.

  39. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    texmex:
    Go stars go!!

    If stars win in regulation, oilers are 3rd in pacific in the morning

    Nice jinx there. Now we know SJ wins for sure.

    Edit: in a way, it might be just as good for SJ to win anyway (in reg). Hoping maybe 2 of DAL, MIN, and VGK start losing out, while Edmonton stays a float. Oilers only need to stay better than 2 of the (realistically) remaining 9 competitors.

  40. deardylan says:

    When you reach the end of your rope, TIE a knot in it and hang on for a point

  41. texmex says:

    Crazy Pedestrian,

    Nah. Stars are chasing the oilers for the wild card. It’s not great who ever wins.

    Plus I live in Texas

  42. Sierra says:

    texmex:
    Sierra,

    0.875 save percentage is not good enough for an nhl goalie

    Wasn’t Kosi 0.862 two nights ago?

  43. frjohnk says:

    At 5 on 5 Jets had more shots 36, than the Oilers had shot attempts 32.

    Jets won the
    Corsi 67% (65-32)
    Shots For% 64% (36-20)
    HDCF% 77.8% (14-4)

    Both goalies were not great. Talbot was better it’s just that the ice was severely tilted in the Oilers end in the 1st and 3rd periods.

    Glad we at least got a point.

  44. Kinger_Oil.redux says:

    OmJo:
    We got outshot 17-2 in the third period.

    This isn’t only on Talbot.

    – Thankfully he’s not starting tommorrw. So many games that he let the team down last 2 years. Just detroys a team. Boys will be pumped to play tmrw with Koski in net. Got us a point though

  45. giddy says:

    No idea how you could even begin to blame Talbot for any of that. 3rd period was an onslaught. Oilers should take that point and RUNNNNNNNNNNNNN

  46. Rebillled says:

    Who cares.

    Pul ju Nu Ju line,

    So great.

  47. frjohnk says:

    All situations
    Talbot faced 12 shots from the slot.
    Helleybuck faced 4 shots from the slot.

  48. texmex says:

    Sierra,

    Yup, but the oilers scored more than the other team.

  49. New Improved Darkness says:

    Ford Prefect:
    So who wants to fight?

    If you’ve ever had a run-in with Zaphod’s third arm, I imagine you’re badgering for a scrap in a squeaky, mouse register.

    His hidden arm is a little longer than his main arms, and its elbow is not quite not where you expect, which makes it useless for hockey, but powerfully multiplies its jumbo Freezie pull strength.

    On a good day, Zaphod can arc four feet of teal Freezie 14 feet.

    He’s also quite amusing when he gets into a pissing match with his second head over double dipping.

    He’s also known to haul out his 3rd hand to scratch out a little ditty on a low-bridge sextuple bass.

    All in, fear the grip strength of his concealed hand.

  50. Ford Prefect says:

    BONE207,

    Who offered up their barn? Let’s go there.

    Edit :: sausage fingers and wine

  51. Oz says:

    OriginalPouzar: That was the best d-man performance on McDavid since Vlasic.

    Seems they had 2-3 guys on him each time he carried the puck into the O-zone.
    Really good effort to gain a point in the standings, and Talbot gave us a chance to win.
    Would look at replacing Wideman with Jones to play a few minutes to take the load off the top 4D
    I know this will never happen but I would also replace Caggs with either Rattie or Zhykov, time and again Caggs loses the puck on boards

  52. GordieHoweHatTrick says:

    OmJo:
    We took the Jets to OT with

    Nurse-Larsson
    Gravel-Benning
    Garrison-Wideman

    Considering that, I think this counts as a moral victory.

    Would healthy d like this be asking too much?
    Klef-Lars
    Nurse-Sek
    Rus-Grav

    Bet Cags gets the night off tomorrow…
    Hitch’s glare at him coming to the bench after the 4th almost lit him on fire

  53. jtblack says:

    Lowetide:
    Caggiula hada terrible shift on that GA.

    He looked “busy” tho

  54. jtblack says:

    OmJo:
    We took the Jets to OT with

    Nurse-Larsson
    Gravel-Benning
    Garrison-Wideman

    Considering that, I think this counts as a moral victory.

    +1

  55. Sierra says:

    texmex:
    Sierra,

    Yup, but the oilers scored more than the other team.

    WTF. Are you ragging on Talbot for not making enough saves or for him not scoring enough goals?

  56. Reja says:

    Kinger_Oil.redux: – Thankfully he’s not starting tommorrw.So many games that he let the team down last 2 years.Just detroys a team.Boys will be pumped to play tmrw with Koski in net.Got us a point though

    What a weak ass shot to lose on. No way they are resigning him get a second or third round pick or package him up for a D man

  57. giddy says:

    Reja: What a weak ass shot to lose on. No way they are resigning him get a second or thirdround pick or package him up for a D man

    I think you need to relax a bit.

  58. OriginalPouzar says:

    Oz: Seems they had 2-3 guys on him each time he carried the puck into the O-zone.
    Really good effort to gain a point in the standings, and Talbot gave us a chance to win.
    Would look at replacing Wideman with Jones to play a few minutes to take the load off the top 4D
    I know this will never happen but I would also replace Caggs with either Rattie or Zhykov, time and again Caggs loses the puck on boards

    By Wideman, you mean Garrison, right?

    I’m not so sure that he wouldn’t give Caggiula the night off – Hitch sees how high event he is I’m sure and I’m also sure he saw exactly what led to the tying goal.

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: What a weak ass shot to lose on. No way they are resigning him get a second or thirdround pick or package him up for a D man

    Given Koskinen doesn’t have a hisotry of a heavy workload and has already showed some signs of fatigue, I wouldn’t be so quick to move on from Talbot. We are going to need both.

  60. CrazyCoach says:

    Felt bad for Talbot and some of the venom spit at him in here. They don’t make OT without him.

    Nurse and Drai had confused signals.

    A point against the Jets though?

    I can live with that.

  61. Munny says:

    Rebillled:
    Who cares.

    Pul ju Nu Ju line,

    So great.

    Lol, that’s good… I prefer the PuNK line tho’.

  62. Munny says:

    CrazyCoach:
    Felt bad for Talbot and some of the venom spit at him in here.They don’t make OT without him.

    Nurse and Drai had confused signals.

    A point against the Jets though?

    I can live with that.

    Down three of four Top 4 defensemen and in their barn? Absolutely.

  63. Gerta Rauss says:

    That’s a tough goal to give up in OT but I give Talbot some credit for getting us there in the first place

    WPG has a lot of good forwards-wow

    I thought Gravel had a nice game

  64. Hockey Project says:

    I was ready to throw something through my television on Drake’s shift that led to the tying goal. How many turnovers can one man commit on one shift?

  65. Jaxon says:

    Stats say Caggiula only had 1 give away all game. I counted 3 on that goal against alone. Who keeps track of this!?!? Caggiula hustles, gets the puck, and then makes crisp hard passes…. to the opposing team. 3 in a row.

  66. kgo says:

    Gravel is legit, I saw him very good tonight especially in the first, composed but intense, focused, quick, strong, aware…..to be honesty I only watched the 1st so hopefully that translated across 3 periods.

    I think he could be a legit 4/5 Dman.

    Talbot got beat by a damn good shot in OT, 18 inches off the ice, far side, shooter at full stride….very tough save to make.

  67. Jaxon says:

    I think Khaira is 7 pts in his last 7! Woot!

  68. Rebillled says:

    Munny,

    As long as they don’t call me late to dinner.

    Pulju also outplays Laine in spades tonight.

  69. hags9k says:

    I don’t think Talbot was bad tonight, not at all.

    It’s just that he still isn’t playing up to his best, and us Oiler fans are impatient.
    It also doesn’t help him that we are comparing him to Koski who has been on a crazy heater.

    He will find his groove again.

  70. Ribs says:

    Wasn’t keeping track. How many goals did Lucic get? Haawwww… Still cheering for the guy.

    Good to see Puljujarvi using his big frame to get the puck to the net from behind the net. I think he’s learning.

    It’s pretty bizarre how small Talbot looks in his net after seeing so much of Koskinen. Maybe he should come out of his net a bit more for better angles? There just seams to be a lot of squeakers on him lately.

    Nurse didn’t continue the bombarding wristers this game (tried for shots instead, which were mostly blocked). I figured this might change due to his new spot in the lineup. I can understand the worry of it causing too much chaos for the amount of ice he was going to see (over 31 minutes!). It’d be nice if he could switch it on and off during the game, though. It can help keep the grinders grinding and the opportunists skates moving.

  71. Ribs says:

    GordieHoweHatTrick: Would healthy d like this be asking too much?
    Klef-Lars
    Nurse-Sek
    Rus-Grav

    Bet Cags gets the night off tomorrow…
    Hitch’s glare at him coming to the bench after the 4th almost lit him on fire

    I don’t think you want to get into this coaches doghouse. Hitchcock had nothing but praise for Caggiula before this game. It will be interesting to hear the verbal on him going forward.

  72. Pescador says:

    Jaxon:
    Stats say Caggiula only had 1 give away all game. I counted 3 on that goal against alone. Who keeps track of this!?!? Caggiula hustles, gets the puck, and then makes crisp hard passes…. to the opposing team. 3 in a row.

    That’s exactly what happened, bad bad shift by Cagg. Tying goal likely doesn’t happen without that terribleness.
    Talbot was not great, but he is getting unfairly shit on.
    Nurse was exceptional all night,
    Got caught puck watching on the final sortie and didn’t hustle back to challenge the Morrisie shot.
    All in all entertaining game, shitty to lose but getting a point in the Peg is a win

  73. Snellbert says:

    Post at one end followed by a goal at the other. That’s hockey. Glad to get the point.

    Ya you’d like Talbot to make the save, but he kept them in it during that 3rd. Excited for Koski tmr.

    I liked Gravel tonight. Battled hard. It looked like he was eyeing the bench for a change between a few whistles but was left out. Interested to see his ice time.

  74. Pescador says:

    hags9k:
    I don’t think Talbot was bad tonight, not at all.

    It’s just that he still isn’t playing up to his best, and us Oiler fans are impatient.
    It also doesn’t help him that we are comparing him to Koski who has been on a crazy heater.

    He will find his groove again.

    He was “back up” good tonight, but ya I’m not ready to flush him either.
    Too much season left,

  75. Ribs says:

    Remember, kiddies… McDavid’s shot off the post wasn’t even a shot on net! He might as well have dumped it into the corner! lol *eyeroll*

  76. Pescador says:

    kgo:
    Gravel is legit, I saw him very good tonight especially in the first, composed but intense, focused, quick, strong, aware…..to be honesty I only watched the 1st so hopefully that translated across 3 periods.

    I think he could be a legit 4/5 Dman.

    Talbot got beat by a damn good shot in OT, 18 inches off the ice, far side, shooter at full stride….very tough save to make.

    Gravel has performed admirably, he is a legit 5/6.
    Big big difference between top four D & bottom pairings.
    I have been thrilled with Gravel – Benning of late, they are/ were helping the Oilers win hockey games

  77. kgo says:

    Pescador: That’s exactly what happened, bad bad shift by Cagg. Tying goal likely doesn’t happen without that terribleness.
    Talbot was not great, but he is getting unfairly shit on.
    Nurse was exceptional all night,
    Got caught puck watching on the final sortie and didn’t hustle back to challenge the Morrisie shot.
    All in all entertaining game, shitty to lose but getting a point in the Peg is a win

    Nurse was brutal on the first goal….played amazing overall, but that 2 second sequence was ugly! He was covering the far post as he should, but when Perrault broke loose from the corner and drove the net, Nurse should have recognized that there was ZERO Winnipeg threats near him and immediately charged at Perrault, hopefully confronting Perrault before the blue paint and seriously reducing his probability of scoring…this is the kind of subtle read Russel makes that rarely gets kudos…On the other side, in Nurse’s defence, there should have been a low forward supporting Benning in the corner, and pressuring Perrault after he emerged from the corner with the puck.

    I Love Nurse tho, i just hope and expect his instincts improve as he goes from 300 to 600 NHL games.

  78. kgo says:

    Pescador: Gravel has performed admirably, he is a legit 5/6.
    Big big difference between top four D & bottom pairings.
    I have been thrilled with Gravel – Benning of late, they are/ were helping the Oilers win hockey games

    I agree there’s a huge difference between 5/6 and 4/5….there’s consensus here that Gravel is a legit 5/6…that’s precisely what i’m arguing….legit 4/5.

  79. kgo says:

    I would argue that Gravel, in a handedness vacuum, is far better suited to play on the 2nd pairing than Benning…

  80. LadiesloveSmid says:

    Sierra: Remind me how many saves Talbot had in the game, in the 3rd period.

    87.5% of the shots tonight? .895 on the season?

    stellar indeed

  81. GMB3 says:

    Jujhair Khaira won the HDSC battle according to natural stat trick. No offensive zone starts either. None in the last two games. He’s really turned a corner under hitch.

    To my eye, Chiasson doesn’t really carry his weight all that well on that first line. Not a great passer, cant carry the puck. I think Khaira has both carried the puck well as of late and has been good at helping generate some chances off the cycle. If the top line had someone else who can help create space for McDavid and Drai, I think they could raise their game to the next level.

    Obviously I would be remiss to make changes when a guy has had decent production on that line, but I think if Khaira keeps his run of strong play going he could be another reasonable candidate to earn some time with McD and Drai. Move Reider to the second line, and move Chiasson down the lineup to see if he can help some facilitate some more production out of the bottom 6.

  82. GMB3 says:

    I feel as though the Oilers need to find a way to play better in the third period. They were just tossing grenades that entire period. So much scramble in their game. We really missed Klefboms ability to separate the man from the puck and make an outlet pass so we can leave the zone with possession.

  83. kgo says:

    GMB3:
    I feel as though the Oilers need to find a way to play better in the third period. They were just tossing grenades that entire period. So much scramble in their game. We really missed Klefboms ability to separate the man from the puck and make an outlet pass so we can leave the zone with possession.

    Hitch said it best, Dmen we’re playing above their comfort level, and were making tired decisions, tired mistakes….aka grenades.

  84. Wilde says:

    Ken Hitchcock: Our hope is that Caleb can come in, in the next game or two, and help us, and we’ll see what he’s got and absorb some minutes

    I guess it’s probably Garrison out?

    I think, no matter the configuration, during this time without Klefbom the team is going to have to have the wingers make plays to the middle.

    The D were actually making non-terrible first touches plenty of times, but then the wingers would just blast the puck off the boards and Winnipeg pinched and took it every time.

    Over and over and over again. It was very McLellan-esque. D-to-D passes, D/C to W, W smashes the puck along the boards and there’s no recovery.

    A lot it going to be said about the third period, but the 2nd period is the only one that was good. The 1st was also a 0-5 HD chance and 10-17 FF affair.

    Spooner played only a little more than Garrison, by the way. Both of his wingers got over ten minutes, he got like six. This is a thing. The team plays with three centres every game.

    Getting a point is a victory. If they win tomorrow, they’ll mimic the Ducks’ spot (who have -10 GD despite having the best goaltending in the league…) and the Sharks’.

    This league is nuts. There’s like six truly good teams.

  85. Wilde says:

    Also, Maurice did some top-secret shit in terms of adjustments that he wouldn’t tell Murat about.

  86. OriginalPouzar says:

    GMB3:
    Jujhair Khaira won the HDSC battle according to natural stat trick. No offensive zone starts either. None in the last two games. He’s really turned a corner under hitch.

    To my eye, Chiasson doesn’t really carry his weight all that well on that first line. Not a great passer, cant carry the puck. I think Khaira has both carried the puck well as of late and has been good at helping generate some chances off the cycle. If the top line had someone else who can help create space for McDavid and Drai, I think they could raise their game to the next level.

    Obviously I would be remiss to make changes when a guy has had decent production on that line, but I think if Khaira keeps his run of strong play going he could be another reasonable candidate to earn some time with McD and Drai. Move Reider to the second line, and move Chiasson down the lineup to see if he can help some facilitate some more production out of the bottom 6.

    Chiasson hasn’t been a fit on that top line since he was moved there, in my opinion.

    Overall the lines seem to be developing chemistry so I’m remiss to make changes but I wouldn’t mind seeing a JP/Chiasson flip.

  87. Wilde says:

    Persson’s leading the SHL in Dmen powerplay points, again, despite the team losing Pettersson.

    He’s also shooting 27% on the powerplay so far, I’ll monitor that. He’s got a ridiculous shot, we know that, but how ridiculous? Last year he had 13.33%.

    I like to hold up the year over year stats to line them up against Växjö’s 2017-18, where obviously anything close would be elite.

    Last year Växjö’s powerplay with Persson on the ice was at a 13.62 GF/60 clip if I’m gathering these stats right (which is completely obscene btw compared to NHL team’s numbers) and this year it’s at 10.34 which is an elite rate in the NHL, not sure about SHL. He had points on 24 of their 33 goals last year, he’s got 9 on 12 this year. indicating that even though Pettersson was obviously a huge part of that unit last year, he was also integral and remains that way this year.

    The SHL website has a stat category for powerplay scoring efficiency labelled toi/+, meaning minutes played per on ice goal. Like my GF/60, except in unfamiliar (to me, for comparative purposes) denominations.

    He’s top-three in the SHL in regular D-man PP contributors in the measure while being his team’s leading producer in the discipline, suggesting that he’s personally driving a powerplay unit to the highest order of the league.

    Only one player has been on the ice for equal or more powerplay goals than Persson while having a better efficiency rating, and it’s a forward who only has 5 pts on the 12 goals, compared to our man’s aforementioned 9 pts on 12 goals.

    Folks, this is a high quality league. In Emmanuel Perry’s recent NHLe framework, an SHL point is worth 0.63 points in the NHL. That’s the 2nd highest non-NHL factor behind the KHL’s 0.74. Contrast this with the AHL’s 0.42, meaning Persson’s points are 50% harder to earn than our AHL dman crop.

  88. Wilde says:

    People mention Ryan Strome in this vein, but a player I wish didn’t depart before Hitchcok got here is Anton Slepyshev. I think Ken could have worked with him.

  89. giddy says:

    Wilde:
    People mention Ryan Strome in this vein, but a player I wish didn’t depart before Hitchcok got here is Anton Slepyshev. I think Ken could have worked with him.

    Me too. Always liked Slep. He would show flashes of great offensive talent, but also had a lot of games where he was pretty unnoticeable to say the least. Victim of being on the outside looking in McLellan’s inner circle and never really getting a proper chance with a decent center/wingers (i.e. more than just a a period or a full two games).

    To break into McLellan’s top six, you basically had to either immediately go on a heater once given a chance there, or be named Drake Caggiula. I understand lack of production meaning you can’t stay, but McLellan never had the patience to allow anyone to gel.

  90. Wilde says:

    giddy: Me too. Always liked Slep. He would show flashes of great offensive talent, but also had a lot of games where he was pretty unnoticeable to say the least. Victim of being on the outside looking in McLellan’s inner circle and never really getting a proper chance with a decent center/wingers (i.e. more than just a a period or a full two games).

    To break into McLellan’s top six, you basically had to either immediately go on a heater once given a chance there, or be named Drake Caggiula. I understand lack of production meaning you can’t stay, but McLellan never had the patience to allow anyone to gel.

    I think there’d be a place for him in multiple spots in the lineup. Speed and size, I’m sure Hitchcock wouldn’t mind 6’3″, 6’4″, 6″2″, 6″3″ down his right side forwards, with three of four having plus boots and the other being named Leon Draisaitl.

  91. OriginalPouzar says:

    Slepy is still Oilers property – we qualified him and retain his RFA rights.

  92. giddy says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    Think he’d want to come back from Russia? Iirc he has a real young family.

  93. Wilde says:

    I think Philly’s obviously going to come out hard, but what killed the Oilers last night was the two lines running everyone over, the Scheifele and Lowry units.

    Giroux & Couturier & Konecny are utter fire again this year, other than that Voracek and Lindblom are pretty efficient 5v5 scorers but there’s no scary second centre. Nolan Patrick’s 4 5v5 goals are his only primary pts this year despite a healthy 8.92 on-ice shooting percentage, putting him at 0.72 primary pts per 60, for reference JP is at 0.77.

    An adjustment I’d be tempted to try against top-heavy teams like PHI with this D-corps situation is putting Nurse-Larsson with the 97 unit against Giroux in every on-the-fly and DZ face-off shift, and then switch either other pairing on once they’re in the offensive zone.

    This is because I don’t like the current Hitchcock setup with these new defense pairings against elites, where the time is split between the Brodziak trio and the McDavid trio. I don’t trust that ID line plus any of these D-pairings against Giroux-Couturier-Konecny. I like them a lot, but it’s too much when you don’t have Klefbom-Larsson.

    Run power v. power and see what Nuge and Khaira and Yessa can do against their less threatening depth, this would also be a good game to get a rested Spooner more minutes (he played little last night).

    Their forwards fall off hard past the first line much like ours do, which means the game could be won off of Koskinen’s stellar goaltending if you can spread the wealth of the sheltered minutes surplus that our opponent offers among the more rested players, like Spooner and Zykov and Rattie.

    Hard match our five best possible against the line that can win them the game by themselves and create an even match of our underwhelming depth vs theirs, let Yessa run free and draw penalties, and win the game off of the goaltending gift of the Koskinen signing. That’s what I say, whatever the hell it is I know.

  94. GMB3 says:

    Wilde: h

    Agreed, but his numbers aren’t strong in the KHL this year (no idea what his usage has been). I believe his big year in the KHL he was a fairly strong producer on the PP (from what I gathered from his highlight tape).

    He has 12 points in 32 games for those wondering

  95. Bulging Twine says:

    Pescador: Gravel has performed admirably, he is a legit 5/6.
    Big big difference between top four D & bottom pairings.
    I have been thrilled with Gravel – Benning of late, they are/ were helping the Oilers win hockey games

    I agree, last night showed he’s more suited for a 5/6. A good one. 3/4 is a little beyond him just now.

  96. russ99 says:

    May be worth a look playing Wideman with Gravel on the second pairing.

    Benning is great going the other way, but to go with it, there’s the 2-6 utter blunders a night in the D-zone, which is much less exposed with third pairing minutes.

  97. russ99 says:

    giddy,

    I always thought it was way more to do with playing within the system than point production. The players who got booted out of the top six under McLellan often would go it alone.

  98. Lowetide says:

    Jesse Puljujarvi as an offensive player, Ken Hitchcock’s handling, and what that tells us about his future with the Oilers

    https://theathletic.com/708089/2018/12/14/lowetide-jesse-puljujarvi-as-an-offensive-player-and-what-that-tells-us-about-his-future-with-the-oilers/

  99. Wilde says:

    GMB3: Agreed, but his numbers aren’t strong in the KHL this year (no idea what his usage has been). I believe his big year in the KHL he was a fairly strong producer on the PP (from what I gathered from his highlight tape).

    He has 12 points in 32 games for those wondering

    Yeah he plays about 15 minutes a night. I did the math and he’s at 1.63 all sit. p/60. It’s not too discouraging in my view.

  100. Sierra says:

    LadiesloveSmid: 87.5% of the shots tonight? .895 on the season?

    stellar indeed

    Did you watch the 3rd period?

    I find it unfathomable that people want to blame Talbot for the loss. The only reason the Oilers got to OT was because of Talbot’s 3rd period. That was one of the most lopsided periods I can remember.

  101. Jaxon says:

    Jan Rutta just placed on waivers!

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