Game 41 2018-19: Oilers at Kings

Friends, our journey reaches midway this evening in California. Game 41 is in the city of angels, followed quickly by No. 42 in the OC (“California here we come”) and then upstate to San Jose. These Edmonton Oilers are 5-6-1 so far against the Pacific, after going 16-11-0 one year ago. That record against the Pacific has room to grow.

The big story for tonight: Alex Chiasson returns. He’ll begin (based on yesterday’s practice) on the No. 2 line with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. It’s also possible Kris Russell plays, perhaps Ken Hitchcock dresses seven defensemen in an effort to make sure he has cover at the position.

This is the good stuff. It’s impossible to undersell the importance of tonight’s game, and the one tomorrow, even the game in San Jose. The proverbial ‘four pointer’ in trey formation. It’s time to climb the mountain.

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 Daniel Nugent-Bowman: From 2 to 98, Oilers share the stories behind their jersey numbers.
  • New Jonathan Willis: Edmonton’s collection of prospect defencemen gives the team options now, in the future and in trade talks
  • New Jonathan Willis: With Mikko Koskinen and Cam Talbot bound for free agency, what is the Oilers goaltending plan?
  • New Lowetide: What could the Oilers acquire in a Jesse Puljujarvi trade?
  • New Jonathan Willis: The Edmonton Oilers are one good summer away from being competitive.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 9 prospect Winter 2018: Joel Persson.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 8 prospect Winter 2018: Kirill Maksimov.
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 7 prospect Winter 2018: Caleb Jones
  • Lowetide: Oilers No. 6 Prospect winter 2018: Cooper Marody
  • 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 41

  • Oilers in 2015: 17-21-3, 37 points; goal differential -21
  • Oilers in 2016: 21-13-7, 49 points; goal differential +6
  • Oilers in 2017: 18-20-3, 39 points; goal differential -17
  • Oilers in 2018: 19-18-3, 41 points; goal differential -6

This California trip is beyond important, and probably one of the reasons Peter Chiarelli decided to add two defensemen a week ago. If he knew Russell was uncertain for these games, grabbing two blue makes more sense. I’d still play Gravel over Manning but Ken Hitchcock seems pleased with the additions.

OILERS IN JANUARY

  • Oilers in January 2016: 2-0-0, four points; goal differential +1
  • Oilers in January 2017: 1-1-0, two points; goal differential -1
  • Oilers in January 2018: 1-1-0, two points; goal differential -4
  • Oilers in January 2019: 1-0-0, two points; goal differential +1

WHAT TO EXPECT IN JANUARY

  • On the road to: Arizona, Los Angeles, Anaheim, San Jose (Expected 2-2-0) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • At home to: Florida, Arizona, Buffalo (Expected 1-1-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • On the road to: Vancouver (Expected 0-1-0) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • At home to: Calgary, Carolina, Detroit (Expected 1-1-1) (Actual 0-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 4-5-2, 10 points in 11 games
  • Current results: 1-0-0, two points in one game

I have tonight as a win, followed by two losses to round out the California trip. The Pacific Division is winning games now, Edmonton is in danger of getting left behind. A big weekend begins tonight.

PROJECTED OILERS LINEUP

It looks like Kassian is going to stay, at least to start the game. Hitchcock likes having a big man on the McDavid-Draisaitl line: “They’ve got to have a player that can help them there. Whether it’s Kass or Chiasson we’ll see how the games go but now we’ve got two big bodies that can grind and help them hold onto it and that’s exactly what happened in the game in Arizona.” He also likes Spooner’s play more recently, we may see the veteran draw in.

There are several Oilers who will play tonight who haven’t scored in exactly one forever. If, say, Tobias Rieder scores tonight, do we pass out or assume we blacked out?

CONDORS

It seems the unique stories coming out of Bakersfield are happening with greater frequency. The team had 51 shots (in a loss) last night, I don’t recall the last time an Oilers’ affiliate managed 50+. The game featured rookie pros Tyler Vesel, Tyler Benson, Logan Day, Cooper Marody, Cameron Hebig, William Lagesson and Dylan Wells—seven newcomers who are playing big minutes and having success. Music!

Benson is unusual, he’s leading the team in points and is No. 8 among AHL rookies in the category. Among players aged 20, he ranks No. 3 (behind Drake Batherson and Adam Mascherin).


In a recent conversation with Mike Griffith at Bakersfield.com, coach Jay Woodcroft said “I think he’s taken a step with his skating this year. His 200-foot game has really come along, he’s one of our best backchecking forwards on our team, he strips pucks and creates turnovers. He’s been all over the chance sheet so we knew it was just a matter of time of him converting.”

Griffith has a post-game article with quotes from Woodcroft here.

I haven’t written much on the World Juniors, the Oilers picked the Christmas period to make a bunch of trades and have a lot of media avails. However, this play by Phil Kemp is one for the ages and I thought it might be a good time to list the boxcars, et cetera for the three Oilers prospects in the tournament.

  • Evan Bouchard 5, 0-3-3, 18:46, he was No. 2 in TOI for Canada blue
  • Dmitri Samorukov 6, 1-3-4, 22:44, led Russian blue in TOI
  • Phil Kemp 6, 0-1-1, 15:59, No. 5 in TOI for USA defense

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514 Responses to "Game 41 2018-19: Oilers at Kings"

« Older Comments
  1. Zelepukin says:

    Rondo:
    This isn’t a team it’s a first line and a couple of 2nd pairing D-men.

    100%. You might as well put Nuge with McD and Drai and teach every other line to play the trap and kill time. This is how our roster is built. 3 NHL players and two D who are 3/4 playing 1/2.

  2. BONE207 says:

    OmJo:
    Lucic trying to replicate his performance against the Panthers?

    Did he score then? Otherwise he’s replicated his performance about 80 times this year.

  3. OmJo says:

    drglen: hmm.there were the 79-80 colorado rockies? the 74-75 Golden Seals?

    Maybe. I was born in 1993 lol so I asked to be corrected.

    If McDavid and Draisaitl collide and go down for a month, how many goals does this team score? Terrifying thought…

  4. drglen says:

    Glovjuice: Yes, I’m a huge metal fan as well. I agree 100% – LOTS of metal gives me the same vibe as lots of classical (mostly the modern stuff starting with Stravinsky). Don’t get me going on classical Indian music which is probably the “deepest” music in my opinion.

    Funny you should say that… I studied briefly in calcutta and have recorded with indian musicians. Indian music is transcendant… bypasses the intellect and addresses the spirit/emotion directly.

  5. OmJo says:

    who:
    Are you kidding me Lucic?
    You’re gonna play tough guy with BRANDON FREAKING LEIPSIC with 4 minutes left?
    PATHETIC!

    Not going to go after former teamates.

    Leipsic, 5′ 10″ 179lbs

  6. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors in OT.

  7. Bulging Twine says:

    They just look horrible!

  8. drglen says:

    Ok edit moral victory point 1 above.

    #1 At least it’s not 5-0

  9. drglen says:

    OmJo: Not going to go after former teamates.

    Leipsic, 5′ 10″ 179lbs

    that’s what Bob is implying. He’s not going after the cocktail pool party summer friends.

  10. Glovjuice says:

    OriginalPouzar: Isn’t Puljujarvi 20 years old?

    Stop, man, just stop.

  11. OmJo says:

    No point challenging this with 90 seconds left…

  12. Gerta Rauss says:

    Dustin Brown offside on the play-no goal

    good stuff

  13. drglen says:

    Yes.!!! . the gods are with us! It’s only 4-0 after all!

  14. OmJo says:

    There’s our moral victory!

  15. Bulging Twine says:

    boooooooooooooooooo

  16. Gerta Rauss says:

    I thought they’d have a good game with a couple days rest and a win under their belt, and Chiasson returning

    A really disappointing result

  17. OmJo says:

    Disgusting.

  18. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors lose in OT.

  19. drglen says:

    and, it wasn’t a home game so you didn’t have to pay 500 to endure this. That’s another good thing.

  20. rope-a-dope says:

    I expect that Chia will be fired at some point soon, the fact that the team is now failing under Hitches coaching essentially confirms that the composition of the team is the real issue. Wonder if this is the time we’ll see a broader cleanout of the OBC management lifer crew though. Hopefully this season on top of last will be enough to show Katz that there are deep problems with the team, not just Chia, everything about how this team scouts talent, makes decisions, sets it’s strategy is poor.

  21. oilersfan says:

    If you all were Katz, who would you fire and keep?

    I would fire right now the following staff:
    Nicholson
    Lowe
    Chiarelli
    Mactavish
    Howson

    I would keep Keith Gretzky and Bob Green
    I would keep Wayne Gretzky to help sign ufa’s and sell suites

    I would hire Brian Burke as POHO and give him the job of finding a new GM

    Let keith help Burke finish the season.

    Nicholson was hired because he had success with hockey Canada.

    That was a huge mistake. Nicholson had never proven anything other than he could make money . any hockey fan In Canada could have been the gm of the Olympic or iIIHF teams and done as well.

    Nicholson’s analysis to demote MacTavish and fire Stu Macgregor were correct, but his decision making process to hire Chiarell was seriously flawed. They won the cup in Boston despite Chiarelli not because of him… chara was signed beforehand, all the stars were drafted before him, he was lucky the Kessel trade worked out to land Seguin then gave Seguin away along with Wheeler and others. He was a poor GM in Boston and Nicholson deserves to be fired for hiring Chiarelli.

    In all seriousness, if the GM of the oilers the last 3 years was a group of 3 bloggers named Woodguy, Bruce M and Jonathan Willis (the group would be 3 equals, trade or signing decision would have required two votes to occur) this team would be in first place.

    Really frustrating because even that group now would have a hell of a time fixing this mess with all the salary cap problems.

  22. drglen says:

    OmJo: Maybe. I was born in 1993 lol so I asked to be corrected.

    If McDavid and Draisaitl collide and go down for a month, how many goals does this team score? Terrifying thought…

    the Golden Seals, hands down, win the coolest uniform contest. I mean, the picture of the seal one. The uni with the word ‘seals’ accross the front, is ugly, but cool in a retro hip kind of way.

  23. Bulging Twine says:

    the season…….
    is slipping…….
    away

  24. tileguy says:

    I am having flashbacks to 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007.

  25. Dicky94 says:

    Kipper nailed it there.

  26. Rube Foster says:

    who:
    Are you kidding me Lucic?
    You’re gonna play tough guy with BRANDON FREAKING LEIPSIC with 4 minutes left?
    PATHETIC!

    Honestly… This is what has become of Milan Lucic, the toughest, meanest, baddest hombre in the NHL… The heavy, honest, character tough as nails guy that Chiarelli attempted to mould his team around.

    The Kings elbow, slash and hack Connor McDavid for three periods of hockey and Lucic goes after a 170lb fourth liner

    Free pass for Doughty, free pass for Carter, free pass for Brown and Kopitar..

    What ever happened to, you touch Connor and you have Lucic to deal with?

    … Lucic slashing the smallest King on the ices shin pads, that’s what happened.

    In a season of stinkers, that might have been one Lucic’s worst games. Certainly the worst game for the Oilers in the Hitch Era.

    If that performance doesn’t get Milan a seat in the press box nothing will.

  27. oilersfan says:

    Is there a player out there with a contract as bad as Lucic in term and dollars the oilers could trade for that would be buy out able?

    If Nicholson were honest he would find which executives listed above agreed to the Hall trade and the Reinhart trade and the Lucic signing. Anybody who agreed with 2 out of the 3 should be fired yesterday. 3 franchise crippling moves done 12 months apart. Set the team back 5 years in the heart of Mcdavids career. Devastating moves. Crippling

  28. Woodguy v2.0 says:

    Tabernac

  29. drglen says:

    tileguy:
    I am having flashbacks to 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007.

    lol. x10 …

  30. Bulging Twine says:

    Dicky94:
    Kipper nailed it there.

    what’d he say?

  31. Zelepukin says:

    only Khaira had a shot on net that wasn’t from McD, Drai or a defensemen. LOL.

  32. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    You guys are still watching this shit storm?

    Chia will not be fired this season

    And I’ll not watch another single minute of this garbage.

    The oilers have Connor Mcdavid.

    The oilers are the worst run organization in professional sports.

  33. drglen says:

    This game leaves a bitter,, bitter taste in my mouth..

    ..oh wait… sorry, it’s the sauerkraut.

  34. Nailer Yakumoto says:

    Surely THIS has to be the turning point for the franchise, right?

    *pours another double*

  35. Bulging Twine says:

    Zelepukin:
    only Khaira had a shot on net that wasn’t from McD, Drai or a defensemen. LOL.

    wow

  36. drglen says:

    Nailer Yakumoto:
    Surely THIS has to be the turning point for the franchise, right?

    *pours another double*

    lol

  37. Suntory Hanzo says:

    If you like music documentaries, there is a free app called Tubi TV. Watched the Downfall of Western Civilization last night and might move on to one on the Damned tonight after some Red Dead.

  38. Pescador says:

    Bulging Twine:
    the season…….
    is slipping…….
    away

    The…
    Season…
    Was….
    Gone…
    Long before you got outta bed in November

  39. JimmyV1965 says:

    who:
    Are you kidding me Lucic?
    You’re gonna play tough guy with BRANDON FREAKING LEIPSIC with 4 minutes left?
    PATHETIC!

    I puked in my mouth a little when I saw that.

  40. Bulging Twine says:

    Hitchcock, “this is not acceptable”

  41. smellyglove says:

    oilersfan,

    As an Oilers fan, this is my dream situation.

    Katz calls press conference tomorrow. Let’s go of:

    Nicholson
    Lowe
    Chiarelli
    Mctavish
    Howson

    “We made a mistake, and we are going to fix this mistake, and it is not going to be easy. Patience, there is no overnight solution. No playoffs this year.”

    Interim Executives for the remainder of the year. Marching orders to clear cap space, make creative trades to to so and being in promising young cast-offs. Focus on young player development. Big time evaluation and recruitment process to bring in new, forward-thinking President, GM, executive staff. Not quickly, possibly as late as May.

    Guy can dream can’t he?

  42. McSorley33 says:

    Réal Goudenyéu,

    It’s like a car accident….I can’t stop watching.

    Who will actually score a 5x 5 goal first – Milan Lucic or Tobias Rieder!

    The suspense…..

  43. drglen says:

    Pescador: The…
    Season…
    Was….
    Gone…
    Long before you got outta bed in November

    ok , well… what other teams have we got in town? Somebody’s got to be winning games and not sucking. How’s south side athletic doing this year?

  44. Chelios is a Dinosaur says:

    smellyglove:
    oilersfan,

    As an Oilers fan, this is my dream situation.

    Katz calls press conference tomorrow. Let’s go of:

    Nicholson
    Lowe
    Chiarelli
    Mctavish
    Howson

    “We made a mistake, and we are going to fix this mistake, and it is not going to be easy. Patience, there is no overnight solution. No playoffs this year.”

    Interim Executives for the remainder of the year. Marchingorders to clear cap space, make creative trades to to so and being in promising young cast-offs. Focus on young player development. Big time evaluation and recruitment process to bring in new, forward-thinking President,GM, executive staff.Not quickly, possibly as late as May.

    Guy can dream can’t he?

    Yes. AND, this was the case as well in 2013/4 or so. Only thing that has changes is an additional name added to the list.

    At some point, accountability runs deeper than one position in an organization. That point was ages ago.

  45. Glovjuice says:

    oilersfan:
    Is there a player out there with a contract as bad as Lucic in term and dollars the oilers could trade for that would be buy out able?

    If Nicholson were honest he would find which executives listed above agreed to the Hall trade and the Reinhart trade and the Lucic signing. Anybody who agreed with 2 out of the 3 should be fired yesterday. 3 franchise crippling moves done 12 months apart. Set the team back 5 years in the heart of Mcdavids career. Devastating moves. Crippling

    This is the most utterly perfect, correct post of the day aside from one thing. I say 7-8 years, not 5. Those moves were sickening at the time. The Reinhard trade destroyed Mr McDavid uphoria.

  46. smellyglove says:

    Nadir’s Raiders… A wise man once said:

    “The Edmonton Oilers don’t have enough NHL players. Find good players, keep good players. There is something rotten in the decision making–and this goes back forever–that allows this organization to throw away useful things… like they’re yesterday’s papers. They make a decision and that’s it–there’s a sense of certainty that is ill-advised, a sense of expertise that sadly does not exist. The Edmonton Oilers–at their heart–are not as smart as they think they are, and it bites them in the ass routinely. ”

    Written November 2013

  47. Zelepukin says:

    Réal Goudenyéu:
    You guys are still watching this shit storm?

    Chia will not be fired this season

    And I’ll not watch another single minute of this garbage.

    The oilers have Connor Mcdavid.

    The oilers are the worst run organization in professional sports.

    I believe Chia’s NHL career in any capacity is done. No one would hire this guy on this resume. Every deal/decision he has made has been comparable to someone who continually puts all their chips on double zero in roulette. Everything is a long shot. Lucic contract and the coke-machine style NHL staying exactly the same, long shot. GR becoming a 1D, long shot, Larsson becoming an all-star 1D, long shot. Spooner, Petro, Manning, Wideman, Strome, all long shots that they’ll play above their proven capabilities/roles. Like every gambler some bets have temporarily worked out (Talbot, Kassian, and Maroon) which obviously keeps his false sense of hope alive.

  48. Glovjuice says:

    Suntory Hanzo:
    If you like music documentaries, there is a free app called Tubi TV. Watched the Downfall of Western Civilization last night and might move on to one on the Damned tonight after some Red Dead.

    Interesting

  49. drglen says:

    maybe we should get maroon.? After this beatdown, this no show. Maroon at least has heart.

  50. drglen says:

    Todd’s scotch must be tasting pretty sweet right about now. His ‘rehire’ value ( by another team, not us) going way up, as people realize ( as suggested above).. it’s the roster.

  51. "Steve Smith" says:

    Zelepukin:
    only Khaira had a shot on net that wasn’t from McD, Drai or a defensemen. LOL.

    Nuge had one.

  52. Pescador says:

    Fuck you Oilers,
    I knew you always hated me

  53. Gerta Rauss says:

    Dustin Brown and Kevin Bieksa on after hours

    A wonderful ending to a wonderful evening

  54. "Steve Smith" says:

    tileguy:
    I am having flashbacks to 2018, 2017, 2015, 2014, 2013, 2012, 2011, 2010, 2009, 2008, 2007.

    My vote for post of the game.

  55. Nailer Yakumoto says:

    Brown then Bieksa on after hours, why does Gord hate us?

  56. "Steve Smith" says:

    Whenever one of my fellow Oilers fans would advocate cheering against the Oilers for pragmatic reasons (because they were already out of the playoffs and were now playing for draft position, because the coach needed to be fired, etc.), my response was always that what they were saying may make sense, but that I was an Oilers fan, and so I cheered for the Oilers to win. I couldn’t just decide that I wanted them to lose, any more than I could decide that I wanted a loved one to fail at something.

    For the last couple of seasons, I have been cheering against the Oilers. I expect that this will persist until Chiarelli is fired. I didn’t make the decision to hope for defeat until it happened; I just suddenly found that, when I was monitoring the scoreboard (I virtually never watch games anymore), I was happier to see Oilers defeats. I hope that goes away if and when I’m ever satisfied with Oilers management again, but I’m not positive that it will.

    (I still want McDavid to get all the points. And, oddly, I still want him to do it as an Oiler, so that’s maybe a sign that I still have it in me to cheer for the team at some point in the future.)

  57. drglen says:

    Gerta Rauss:
    Dustin Brown and Kevin Bieksa on after hours

    A wonderful ending to a wonderful evening

    really!? Insult to injury.

    Some bad voodoo thang going down here. Katz….. what did you do?

  58. €√¥£€^$ says:

    Wow, kudos to those who watched the entire game, I switched to Netflix after the 3rd goal….

    For those ready to jump ship, why don’t you try this:

    bnicholson@edmontonoilers.com & dkatz@edmontonoilers.com

    Feel free to express your opinion, maybe they’ll read your email. This will at least give you a chance.to vent & to add to the entertainment value that this blog offers us all you could even share what you’ve written here.

    Good night all

  59. Jethro Tull says:

    Better make some trades to shore up that defense.

    I’m a big proponent of change. Just not adding more of the same or worse.

    And none of you seem worried Hitch endorsed these trades?

  60. Jerk says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    Whenever one of my fellow Oilers fans would advocate cheering against the Oilers for pragmatic reasons (because they were already out of the playoffs and were now playing for draft position, because the coach needed to be fired, etc.), my response was always that what they were saying may make sense, but that I was an Oilers fan, and so I cheered for the Oilers to win.I couldn’t just decide that I wanted them to lose, any more than I could decide that I wanted a loved one to fail at something.

    For the last couple of seasons, I have been cheering against the Oilers.I expect that this will persist until Chiarelli is fired.I didn’t make the decision to hope for defeat until it happened; I just suddenly found that, when I was monitoring the scoreboard (I virtually never watch games anymore), I was happier to see Oilers defeats.I hope that goes away if and when I’m ever satisfied with Oilers management again, but I’m not positive that it will.

    (I still want McDavid to get all the points.And, oddly, I still want him to do it as an Oiler, so that’s maybe a sign that I still have it in me to cheer for the team at some point in the future.)

    That’s me. I want to cheer for this team, I really do, why must they make it so freaking hard?

  61. OmJo says:

    €√¥£€^$:
    Wow, kudos to those who watched the entire game, I switched to Netflix after the 3rd goal….

    For those ready to jump ship, why don’t you try this:

    bnicholson@edmontonoilers.com & dkatz@edmontonoilers.com

    Feel free to express your opinion, maybe they’ll read your email.This will at least give you a chance.to vent & to add to the entertainment value that this blog offers us all you could even share what you’ve written here.

    Good night all

    I’m just a lowly tier two fan, my email would automatically end up in their spam boxes.

  62. drglen says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Better make some trades to shore up that defense.

    I’m a big proponent of change. Just not adding more of the same or worse.

    And none of you seem worried Hitch endorsed these trades?

    I’m worred that Petrovic had such a bad game.

    I’m back to Matt Benning. He at least would play with some energy, some battle.

    I’m at a loss to be honest with you.

  63. JamesL says:

    Two words: Nadir’s Raiders.

  64. Oz says:

    Wow this was bad, really bad.
    Too many bad plays by our recently acquired players. If I was coaching I would look for chemistry between players and leave the the blender in the closet. Recent acquisions by the GM be dammed, send Yamamoto back to Bakersfield, play Kaharia, JP, Rattie, Chiasson, Kassian, Nuge, Connor, LD , Reiner, that is the top nine always, bottom three made up of one tryout from the condors and anyone else.
    For the Defense sit Manning immediately and forever, Jones had a tough night tonight but I would leave him as second pair, with Russel when he returns hopefully tomorrow. First pair Larsson and Nurse. Third pair Gravel an Benning and Petrovic as the alternate D.

  65. drglen says:

    Jerk: That’s me. I want to cheer for this team, I really do, why must they make it so freaking hard?

    The perpetual underdog. Like the Raiders, the Browns.., .. but I’m having a hard time finding an identity for the team. Are we tough, are we fast, are we skilled, are we hard working, are we up and coming, are we talented, are we possession, are we fast break, are we forecheckers, are we snipers, are we greasy goals, are we dump and chase, .. .. are we old, .. are we young, .. .. and the answer seems to be…… none of the above. Now that’s really hard to do.

  66. drglen says:

    Oz:
    Wow this was bad, really bad.
    Too many bad plays by our recently acquired players. If I was coaching I would look for chemistry between players and leave the the blender in the closet. Recent acquisions by the GM be dammed, send Yamamoto back to Bakersfield, play Kaharia, JP, Rattie, Chiasson, Kassian, Nuge, Connor, LD , Reiner, that is the top nine always, bottom three made up ofone tryout from the condors and anyone else.
    For the Defense sit Manning immediately and forever, Jones had a tough night tonight but I would leave him as second pair, with Russel when he returns hopefully tomorrow. First pair Larsson and Nurse. Third pair Gravel an Benning and Petrovic as the alternate D.

    yep. I agree with your plan.

  67. New Improved Darkness says:

    drglen:
    Funny you should say that … I studied briefly in Calcutta and have recorded with Indian musicians. Indian music is transcendent … bypasses the intellect and addresses the spirit/emotion directly.

    Funny you should say that … I spent my afternoon trying to figure out whether the Balkan peninsula is actually a peninsula (Euclid and Riemann would probably disagree), and how Eurasia became historically divided along the Caucus mountains, a boundary running mostly east-west between the Black and Caspian seas.

    Likewise, with music, I can never figure out where to divide the intellect and the emotion.

    In any event, I recently went on a raga jag myself, over the past summer.

    Liked: Zakir Hussain & Rakesh Chaurasia at Crossroads Festival ’15.

    Sublime, but compared to Ali Akbar Khan on the sarod or S. Balachander on the veena, it’s merely pond hockey with snow on your butt.

    I just love it when those old B&W guys go all introspective, deep noodle. Totally different mojo than the pulsating drums.

  68. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    I haven’t watched a game since November. I could tell that these oilers were no where near good enough to compete. I’ve only been following the oilers on lowetide and keeping up with game scores/stats using the NHL app. As soon as the Kings scored, I just knew they would lock it down from there. Teams with good dmen know exactly how to shut the oilers down. Get the first goal, make them play from behind, hack/slash the crap out of McDavid, and you’re golden.

  69. OriginalPouzar says:

    I wonder if tomorrow is the game where Lucic is healthy scratched. Moreso than any other game he was a noticeable non-factor against the Kings (and he had the opportunity to impact the game). I rarely do this with players but I question his effort and “give a fuck”.

    I can’t imagine Joe G. Would bring less in a regular shift.

  70. drglen says:

    New Improved Darkness: Funny you should say that … I spent my afternoon trying to figure out whether the Balkan peninsula is actually a peninsula (Euclid and Riemann would probably disagree), and how Eurasia became historically divided along the Caucus mountains, a boundary running mostly east-west between the Black and Caspian seas.

    Likewise, with music, I can never figure out where to divide the intellect and the emotion.

    In any event, I recently went on a raga jag myself,over the past summer.

    Liked: Zakir Hussain & Rakesh Chaurasia at Crossroads Festival ’15.

    Sublime, but compared to Ali Akbar Khan on the sarod or S. Balachander on the veena, it’s merely pond hockey with snow on your butt.

    I just love it when those old B&W guys go all introspective, deep noodle. Totally different mojo than the pulsating drums.

    You are on to something there my friend… the old ways.. far superior.. and deep beyond description.. The western influence has weakened the music, the young maestros fancy themselves to be rock stars.

  71. HT Joe says:

    How can this team get fixed? Are we as fans literally going to have to wait until the Lucic contract expires so that the team surrounding McDavid can organically grow and develop into something not terrible? I don’t see any short term solutions… internally drafting and developing an above-average blue line could easily take 5-7 years.

  72. Bank Shot says:

    Contest time!

    Pick the game that Tobias Rieder scores his first goal of the season and I’ll send you two tickets to Edmonton vs Dallas on March 28th.

    Pick the game, the period, and the time on the clock. Whoever gets closest wins the grand prize!

    Hopefully he scores before then.

    Let the festivities commence!

  73. "Steve Smith" says:

    Bank Shot:
    Pick the game that Tobias Rieder scores his first goal of the season and I’ll send you two tickets to Edmonton vs Dallas on March 28th.

    Don’t you threaten us.

  74. HT Joe says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I wonder if tomorrow is the game where Lucic is healthy scratched.

    I don’t think the Oilers (with Chia as the GM) will ever strip Lucic of his “A”, and for the same reason I don’t see them ever healthy scratching him. It’s like they are making decisions not related to winning.

  75. HT Joe says:

    Bank Shot:
    Contest time!

    Pick the game that Tobias Rieder scores his first goal of the season and I’ll send you two tickets to Edmonton vs Dallas on March 28th.

    Pick the game, the period, and the time on the clock. Whoever gets closest wins the grand prize!

    Can I guess 1st period of the March 28th game? >:)

  76. oilersfan says:

    I asked above if there is a comparable contract to lucic out there, maybe a team has two bad contracts they would like to lose..

    Could the oilers trade lucic for say Louie Ericsson and Sam Gagner … two bad contracts (because nobody’s single bad contract is as bad as Lucic), or Dustin Brown and Phaneuf, thEn buy one or both of them out …maybe Rask and Backes…

    I know he has a no move… I bet he would go to any of those cities rather than stay here and face the angry fan base and press box he will see if he stays…

    Looking for creative ways to lose Lucic…

  77. Bank Shot says:

    oilersfan:
    I asked above if there is a comparable contract to lucic out there, maybe a team has two bad contracts they would like to lose..

    Could the oilers trade lucic for say Louie Ericsson and Sam Gagner … two bad contracts (because nobody’s single bad contract is as bad as Lucic), or Dustin Brown and Phaneuf, thEn buy one or both of them out …maybe Rask and Backes…

    I know he has a no move… I bet he would go to any of those cities rather than stay here and face the angry fan base and press box he will see if he stays…

    Looking for creative ways to lose Lucic…

    Buy him out with a compliance buyout after the next lockout in the fall.

  78. Crazy Pedestrian says:

    It’s honestly mind boggling how much damage Chia has done to the Oilers… everyone says that he has done a good job restocking/rebuilding the prospect pipeline, but I’m not sure he’s really moved the needle much on that either. Other than Bouchard, are there really any can’t-miss prospects bubbling under??? Even Yamamoto and JP (even though they are still young) are starting to look like they might be 3rd liners at best.

    This is super depressing… I would love to know what McDavid is thinking right now…

  79. Bank Shot says:

    HT Joe: Can I guess 1st period of the March 28th game?>:)

    Sure. Just wait outside Rogers Place and I’ll email you the tickets when Rieder goes top cheddar.

  80. Mantis says:

    Bank Shot:
    Contest time!

    Pick the game that Tobias Rieder scores his first goal of the season and I’ll send you two tickets to Edmonton vs Dallas on March 28th.

    Pick the game, the period, and the time on the clock. Whoever gets closest wins the grand prize!

    Hopefully he scores before then.

    Let the festivities commence!

    Vs. Arizona on the 12th, 2nd period, 12:48 left on the clock. (I had to pick something soon, as I might have given up watching in disgust if I went too much longer…)

  81. HT Joe says:

    Bank Shot: Sure. Just wait outside Rogers Place and I’ll email you the tickets when Rieder goes top cheddar.

    Haha.

  82. v4ance says:

    The Oilers decided to take the game off so LT did the same. I don’t know if I’d be even more depressed looking at the counting numbers after each period…

  83. Bank Shot says:

    Mantis,

    Got it. Good luck!

  84. --hudson-- says:

    “I’ve said enough, I’ll get myself in even further trouble, this is not acceptable.”
    – Hitchcock
    https://youtu.be/e1DxSU2jDH4

    Since when is Hitch in trouble?

  85. BustedSoulO says:

    oilersfan:
    If you all were Katz, who would you fire and keep?

    I would fire right now the following staff:
    Nicholson
    Lowe
    Chiarelli
    Mactavish
    Howson

    I would keep Keith Gretzky and Bob Green
    I would keep Wayne Gretzky to help sign ufa’s and sell suites

    I would hire Brian Burke as POHO and give him the job of finding a new GM

    Let keith help Burke finish the season.

    Nicholson was hired because he had success with hockey Canada.

    That was a huge mistake.Nicholson had never proven anything other than he could make money . any hockey fan In Canada could have been the gm of the Olympic or iIIHF teams and done as well.

    Nicholson’s analysis to demote MacTavish and fire Stu Macgregor were correct, but his decision making process to hire Chiarell was seriously flawed. They won the cup in Boston despite Chiarelli not because of him… chara was signed beforehand, all the stars were drafted before him, he was lucky the Kessel trade worked out to land Seguin then gave Seguin away along with Wheeler and others. He was a poor GM in Boston and Nicholson deserves to be fired for hiring Chiarelli.

    In all seriousness, if the GM of the oilers the last 3 years was a group of 3 bloggers named Woodguy, Bruce M and Jonathan Willis (the group would be 3 equals, trade or signingdecision would have required two votes to occur) this team would be in first place.

    Really frustrating because even that group now would have a hell of a time fixing this mess with all the salary cap problems.

    + 1000

  86. Ribs says:

    So frustrating. Hitchcock’s post game was on point once again. Not many players showed up to play this game, and that is not acceptable. Anything less than a players only meeting sometime between tonight and tomorrow’s game is not acceptable. If Connor doesn’t want to call it (and there are plenty of reasons that would make this awkward for him), then someone else needs to stand up.

    Anyone.

    Watch the post game from Chiasson. He’s a guy who gets it. He played just as awful as anyone else, but I’d bet he feels worse than most of the guys on this team for it.

    I’ve held on to the hope that Bob and Pete truly had a solid sounding plan and intended to run with it to it’s completion, which would indeed bear fruit, but this season has been an astonishing disappointment. I think they probably lucked out with Koskinen and Chiasson, and not much else has done any good to improve the team from last season.

    Let’s take a look at this night’s lineup…

    Gravel – Serviceable last pairing d-man that played almost 20 minutes tonight.

    Larsson – Top pairing guy but still being asked to do far too much.

    Rattie – Decent offensive threat when put in position to succeed. Pretty useless when not.

    Petrovic – I can’t believe Hitch kept giving him shifts tonight. Awful. Just awful.

    Khaira – Another team would have him exceeding expectations. Results are small but he doesn’t get much to work with.

    Reider – Signing fail so far. Had really hoped for more from him. Completely invisible most nights.

    Spooner – Still not sure what he does well. Could be fired into the sun with half the roster and no one would notice.

    Nurse – Very good 2nd paring guy that has been screwed around with mightily by the team. He’s one of the few guys that have showed any character at all and you can see it being sucked out of him as his NHL career continues. This is a guy that needs to be having fun to play to the best of his abilities. It’s not happening. Losing might have something to do with it.

    Manning – What in the world was Chiarelli thinking? Not good, plus has bad history with the top talent on the team. If you want to fuck with a dressing room, this is how you do it. Hitchcock says he wants guys to play for their teammates, as opposed to playing with them, and then this *facepalm*.

    Lucic – I like the guy, and have rooted for him all along, but at what point do you cut the cord and move on? So many players on this team that bring little to nothing, and Lucic is unfortunately one of them.

    Brodziak – Comes to work, clocks in, does his job to the least acceptable level, clocks out. Thanks for coming? Was really hoping for a bit more from him. Go chew your gum somewhere else if you’re not committing to this team.

    Draisatl – This guy shows up to compete. Give him a supporting cast that will do the same. Ease his burden a little bit so that his shortcomings don’t become as blown up as they have. Other teams do this. Honest!

    Chiasson – Largest skill is his compete level and it stands out like a sore thumb on this squad. Get more of these guys. Pronto. You see top teams rife with them.

    Kassian – Some skill, some grit, some what the hell do we do with you. Wear some extra sunscreen on the trip the to sun, dude. Hope everything works out for you.

    Jones – Rookie doing rookie things, playing over 23 minutes tonight. *throws papers in air, severe eyerolls, walks out*

    Nuge – Possibly the most complete player on the team. Such a gaddamned waste. If this team had any depth at all he would be scoring 100 points on McDavid’s wing this season.

    McDavid – Needs to take the next step in leadership. Start speaking his mind and holding people accountable. It’s easier if there are people to help him with this, but clearly there is not enough in the room at this point of time. I imagine a clip of him being interviewed where he is saying all the right things as he usually does, but then the camera slowly zooms into his eyeball and we can see an aggravated little Connor screaming “HELP ME!!” as he pounds at the encapsulating sclera.

    Puljujarvi – Still looks like a guy that doesn’t know his teammates very well on the ice. Needs to be included and commit to team play more. A lot of talent there that isn’t being used effectively. Blame lies between himself and the team. Needs to be fixed, quickly.

    Koskinen – Working out so far…Or is it? Really hard to tell at this point. We hope for the best.

    Talbot – Looked solid in relief. Too bad it’s a coin flip that decides whether he can stop rubber on any given night.

    I’ve never been a “Fire The GM” kinda guy, but I am getting a clear “Yeah, Dallas Eakins doesn’t know what he’s doing” vibe lately from the current management.

    Playoffs are still attainable this season (for reasons I cannot comprehend). Ownership should do what is needed to do to get the team there, and the players need to start playing to win.

    *Sigh*

  87. BustedSoulO says:

    Bank Shot:
    Contest time!

    Pick the game that Tobias Rieder scores his first goal of the season and I’ll send you two tickets to Edmonton vs Dallas on March 28th.

    Pick the game, the period, and the time on the clock. Whoever gets closest wins the grand prize!

    Hopefully he scores before then.

    Let the festivities commence!

    Thanx… but, no.

  88. Bulging Twine says:

    –hudson–:
    “I’ve said enough, I’ll get myself in even further trouble, this is not acceptable.”
    – Hitchcock
    https://youtu.be/e1DxSU2jDH4

    Since when is Hitch in trouble?

    I wondered if he got ‘in trouble’ when he talked repeatedly about the lack of depth on the team. Chiarelli was probably thinking, dude, I’ve got enough heat here, let’s not focus the fanbase’s attention more on the problem.

  89. Bruce McCurdy says:

    drglen: Funny you should say that… I studied briefly in calcutta and have recorded with indian musicians.Indian music is transcendant… bypasses the intellect and addresses the spirit/emotion directly.

    It does the latter while also satisfying the intellect, is my experience.

  90. silasbengtsson says:

    Jason Zucker, please. That is all.

    P.S. Also maybe Coyle. Thanks.

  91. OriginalPouzar says:

    Réal Goudenyéu:
    You guys are still watching this shit storm?

    Chia will not be fired this season

    And I’ll not watch another single minute of this garbage.

    The oilers have Connor Mcdavid.

    The oilers are the worst run organization in professional sports.

    Absolutely – I’ll watch each and every game and I’ll continue to plan around the Oilers so that I don’t miss games.

    As you mention in your post “The oilers have Connor Mcdavid”.

    Also, missing games means missing information about the team, the players, the coaching staff, how players are progressing, what players are good at and what they struggle at. In order to talk intelligently about players and preferred plans moving forward, I like to be as “in the know” as I can and that includes watching games, not skipping them to watch re-runs of Prison Break.

  92. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Better make some trades to shore up that defense.

    I’m a big proponent of change. Just not adding more of the same or worse.

    And none of you seem worried Hitch endorsed these trades?

    Hitch is playing to the crowd, its obvious now.

    Hitch also sung the praises of Zykov’s silll-set upon his claim and listed 3 skills that he has that were required on the team – he then gave the player zero opportunity. Clearly lip service.

  93. OriginalPouzar says:

    At least we get to look forward to Nurse/Russell as a paring soon – Hitch was express yesterday that he likes that pairing and its a sure thing once Russell returns.

    I guess that leaves Jones playing top pairing minutes as a 21 year old with Larsson…..

  94. Zelepukin says:

    OriginalPouzar: Absolutely – I’ll watch each and every game and I’ll continue to plan around the Oilers so that I don’t miss games.

    As you mention in your post “The oilers have Connor Mcdavid”.

    Also, missing games means missing information about the team, the players, the coaching staff, how players are progressing, what players are good at and what they struggle at. In order to talk intelligently about players and preferred plans moving forward, I like to be as “in the know” as I can and that includes watching games, not skipping them to watch re-runs of Prison Break.

    I as well, will continue to watch as long as we have McD. There will come a time when we don’t and seeing him play in person, is a privilege each and every time.

    I’m starting to believe that McD is too good of a player. Everyone relies on him too much. Chia did, the coach did and every team mate did.

    I think whoever comes in to replace Chia (because he will eventually be fired) is going to have to take a radical outside approach to this team structure. Chia has robbed us of any additional assets to leverage so I would not be surprised for someone to come in and trade McD for 3 or 4 great assets. Assets that actually contribute to two scoring lines a real 1-2 defenseman.

    Depth is everything now. Heck, we’ll probably finish 29th or 30th and McD/Drai could be top 5 in scoring. That is ridiculous when you think about it.

  95. OriginalPouzar says:

    HT Joe:
    How can this team get fixed?Are we as fans literally going to have to wait until the Lucic contract expires so that the team surrounding McDavid can organically grow and develop into something not terrible?I don’t see any short term solutions… internally drafting and developing an above-average blue line could easily take 5-7 years.

    Aside from the Lucic contract (which the team could potentially get out of for free in connection with the new CBA in two years) all the other “anchor” contracts expire in the next year or two.

    Combine that with the fact that the last number of years of drafting and developing prospects is about to start to pay dividends (with a wealth of prospects with a legit shot at being NHL ready next year and a pipeline in behind) and I think the cap crunch will start to ease and value contracts will start to appear within the next few years as long as smart and patient moves are made (for example, do not trade Puljujarvi and 2nd for Tyfoli and do not trade a 2nd and Jones for Simmonds, etc.).

    As long as management (current or incoming) ceases to make moves such as adding Manning’s cap in future years – there is a way out within a few years – patience

  96. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bank Shot: Buy him out with a compliance buyout after the next lockout in the fall.

    I would prefer to buy him out with a compliance (amnesty) buyout in connection with the next CBA negotiations in 2 years, without a lockout – there doesn’t have to be labor stoppage for amnesty buyouts to be negotiated.

  97. OriginalPouzar says:

    I’m very curious to see how the team performs tonight and looking forward to the game.

    I have no idea what Hitchcock is going to do with the lines – is he going to start from scratch or just make some minor adjustments.

    I think tonight may be the night that Lucic finally sits for a game – I can’t imagine that Joe G. could be any less effective. I could totally be off on that.

    Talbot was solid last night in relief and I would think he gets the start.

    Go Oilers!

  98. Glovjuice says:

    “Steve Smith”:
    Whenever one of my fellow Oilers fans would advocate cheering against the Oilers for pragmatic reasons (because they were already out of the playoffs and were now playing for draft position, because the coach needed to be fired, etc.), my response was always that what they were saying may make sense, but that I was an Oilers fan, and so I cheered for the Oilers to win.I couldn’t just decide that I wanted them to lose, any more than I could decide that I wanted a loved one to fail at something.

    For the last couple of seasons, I have been cheering against the Oilers.I expect that this will persist until Chiarelli is fired.I didn’t make the decision to hope for defeat until it happened; I just suddenly found that, when I was monitoring the scoreboard (I virtually never watch games anymore), I was happier to see Oilers defeats.I hope that goes away if and when I’m ever satisfied with Oilers management again, but I’m not positive that it will.

    (I still want McDavid to get all the points.And, oddly, I still want him to do it as an Oiler, so that’s maybe a sign that I still have it in me to cheer for the team at some point in the future.)

    This encapsulates my current situation as well. Perfectly.

  99. Glovjuice says:

    €√¥£€^$:
    Wow, kudos to those who watched the entire game, I switched to Netflix after the 3rd goal….

    For those ready to jump ship, why don’t you try this:

    bnicholson@edmontonoilers.com & dkatz@edmontonoilers.com

    Feel free to express your opinion, maybe they’ll read your email.This will at least give you a chance.to vent & to add to the entertainment value that this blog offers us all you could even share what you’ve written here.

    Good night all

    I switched to Breaking Bad.

  100. Dicky94 says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    If Lucic doesn’t sit tonight it’s obvious it’s in his contract that he can’t be.

  101. Glovjuice says:

    New Improved Darkness: Funny you should say that … I spent my afternoon trying to figure out whether the Balkan peninsula is actually a peninsula (Euclid and Riemann would probably disagree), and how Eurasia became historically divided along the Caucus mountains, a boundary running mostly east-west between the Black and Caspian seas.

    Likewise, with music, I can never figure out where to divide the intellect and the emotion.

    In any event, I recently went on a raga jag myself,over the past summer.

    Liked: Zakir Hussain & Rakesh Chaurasia at Crossroads Festival ’15.

    Sublime, but compared to Ali Akbar Khan on the sarod or S. Balachander on the veena, it’s merely pond hockey with snow on your butt.

    I just love it when those old B&W guys go all introspective, deep noodle. Totally different mojo than the pulsating drums.

    Cool. I saw the great Ali Akbar Khan live in Edmonton about 20 or so years ago. Beautiful. The Water Lily Acoustics label (yes, high end ultra pure recording path label) of him performing 4 classic rags is stunning. Have seen Zakir Hussain with his dad, Alli Raka just before he passed as well as Ravi with his gorgeous Sitar star daughter as well.

  102. jake70 says:

    Glovjuice: I switched to Breaking Bad.

    I had another viewing of Blade Runner and Blade Runner-2049 teed up to go “au cas ou”, but fell asleep in 2nd period, which was just as well. Those movies will be on standby tonight.

  103. Jethro Tull says:

    Glovjuice,

    Norah Jones had a passably good country band called Puss In Boots she formed in order to practice electric guitar. Does a good version of Down By The River.

  104. Glovjuice says:

    Jethro Tull:
    Glovjuice,

    Norah Jones had a passably good country band called Puss In Boots she formed in order to practice electric guitar. Does a good version of Down By The River.

    That man produced some killer offspring eh.

  105. godot10 says:

    drglen:
    Todd’s scotch must be tasting pretty sweet right about now. His ‘rehire’ value ( by another team, not us) going way up, as people realize ( as suggested above).. it’s the roster.

    McLellan had a healthy Klefbom.

  106. godot10 says:

    drglen: The perpetual underdog.Like the Raiders, the Browns.., .. but I’m having a hard time finding an identity for the team. Are we tough, are we fast, are we skilled, are we hard working, are we up and coming, are we talented, are we possession, are we fast break, are we forecheckers,are we snipers, are we greasy goals, are we dump and chase, .. .. are we old, .. are we young, .. .. and the answer seems to be…… none of the above. Now that’s really hard to do.

    Basically true. The Oilers are not built to “play fast” nor to “play heavy”. One third of the team can do the former, one third the latter, and one third cannot play at all.

  107. godot10 says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I wonder if tomorrow is the game where Lucic is healthy scratched.Moreso than any other game he was a noticeable non-factor against the Kings (and he had the opportunity to impact the game).I rarely do this with players but I question his effort and “give a fuck”.

    I can’t imagine Joe G. Would bring less in a regular shift.

    Might as well. Anaheim doesn’t have any size-challenged players for Lucic to pick on when the game is hopelessly out of hand.

  108. OriginalPouzar says:

    Dicky94:
    OriginalPouzar,

    If Lucic doesn’t sit tonight it’s obvious it’s in his contract that he can’t be.

    Except that isn’t a permitted clause in an SPC……

  109. Old Timer says:

    Ever since Lucic came to the Oilers he has thought of himself as a scorer. In fact, time is proving him dead wrong.
    The problem is that the only thing he could do would be send messages to other players not to screw with our “real talent” like Draisaitl and McDavid.
    For some time now other teams have been bullying both these players and the Oilers, not just Lucic, but the whole team, have run away from any physical confrontation. It is very embarrassing when the MSM even points this out.

  110. Red wolf says:

    So over the last 10 games the Oilers have the identical record to …
    the Ottawa Senators (2-7-1)

    Its January, time to talk draft picks again!
    I hear Hughes is good…

  111. JonyPro says:

    Wow, I sure want to go back in time and slap myself when I thought Chia would help this team out…..wow.. how can you mess up this badly with all the talent and draft picks he had? Now the Oilers have very little talent and even less prospects coming up…..I have never paid for a game ticket or any merchandise nor will I untill they make it to the Stanley Cup round in the playoffs. Just garbage thrust upon more garbage, it’s sad rally.

  112. thehop says:

    For all the negative.

    They are up 2-0 on a good team.
    McDavid looks like McDavid.
    Pulu looks like The Mule from the epic Detroit championship days and Talbot is playing well.

    Nurse looking like the future Captain of the team. Take that Henrique.

    Now about Chiarelli, Lucic and the lack of depth.

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