Game 1 Pacific Division Semis 2019: Condors at Eagles

The last time an Oilers’ AHL affiliate played a playoff game, Darnell Nurse, Brandon Davidson, Jordan Oesterle, Brad Hunt, Dillon Simpson and David Musil formed the defense. Richard Bachman and Laurent Brossoit were the goalie tandem (in Oklahoma City), and the big guns up front were mostly AHL veterans (Andrew Miller, Matt Ford, Ryan Hamilton). Prospect forwards of note included Jujhar Khaira and Mitch Moroz. It seems like decades. The Condors under Jay Woodcroft represent an enormous change in the weather.

NHL GAMES PLAYED BY 2015 CONDORS 2015-2019

  1. Darnell Nurse 277
  2. Jujhar Khaira 154
  3. Brandon Davidson 150
  4. Jordan Oesterle 145
  5. Martin Marincin 126
  6. Iiro Pakarinen 117
  7. Brad Hunt 106
  8. Laurent Brossoit 48
  9. Richard Bachman 7
  10. Andrew Miller 6
  11. Dillon Simpson 3

The only OKC playoff forwards who played over 100 NHL games in the four seasons that would follow were Khaira and Pakarinen. That was partly due to the arrival of Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl and Anton Slepyshev that fall, but the 2014-15 OKC Barons had a weakness at forward and that’s a fact. Tyler Pitlick would finally start matriculating toward an NHL job as well, and of course Anton Lander (who didn’t play in the 2014-15 postseason) was hanging around.

PROJECTED LINES

The original Kid Line was Cooper Marody between Tyler Benson and Cameron Hebig back in the fall. Hebig scored six goals and 12 points in the first 12 games, Benson 2-8-10 and Marody (in six games) 3-6-9.

Tonight, the Kid Line will include Benson [68, 15-51-66], who posted the most assists by an AHL rookie since Teddy Purcell; Marody [58, 19-45-64] who can be credibly called a wizard at this level; Josh Currie [53, 27-14-41] who represents the heart and soul of this team going back to 2015 Bakersfield.

The second line, and it’ll be a key trio tonight, has Joe Gambardella [50, 29-19-48] on left wing with Brad Malone [43, 8-17-25] at pivot and Patrick Russell [51, 18-22-40] on the right side. These three are very effective, winning battles and playing a skilled game. If you’re watching tonight, check out Gambardella on the forecheck. He’s good at it in the NHL, but in the AHL he’s a constant concern.

The third and fourth lines will be known around game time. I can tell you it has been fluid lately, with Jakob Stukel showing some offense. Luke Esposito stepped up as the season rolled along, Evan Polei is a favourite and Mitch Callahan is full effective after a long period of ineffective play going back to last season. Dave Gust might be the best Condors forward no one talks about.

PROJECTED PAIRINGS AND GOALIE

Caleb Jones [50, 6-23-29] and William Lagesson [67, 8-19-27] have been together for a time, not certain what Woodcroft will do with Ethan Bear coming back.

A good guess would have the second pair as Ryan Stanton [65, 5-15-20] wit Bear [52, 6-25-31], they played together quite a bit as the season rolled along (Bear has been injured on and off).

The third pairing might be Keegan Lowe [67, 0-20-20] with Logan Day [64, 7-27-34], although Brandon Manning [8, 0-0-0] could draw in or play as an extra as Bear insurance.

Also on the team are Jake Kulevich [29, 2-6-8] who has emerged as a solid AHL defenseman, and Evan Bouchard [0-0-0] who just joined the team and is unlikely to play this weekend.

Goaltender Shane Starrett [42, 2.33 .918] had a fantastic season and should get most or all of the action.

CONDORS V. EAGLES

The Condors won the season series 4-3-1, outscoring Colorado 31-24. Look for Starrett to start and Gust to score.

  • Game 1: 5-2 Condors win, Puljujarvi, Benson and Jones two points.
  • Game 2: 4-3 Eagles, Starrett struggled, two goals for Gambardella.
  • Game 3: 5-3 Condors, Yamamoto scores twice, Wells stops 35 of 38.
  • Game 4: 3-2 Eagles in a SO, goals by Yamamoto and Callahan.
  • Game 5: 5-4 Eagles, Wells struggled, Dave Gust 7 shots.
  • Game 6: 6-3 Eagles, 7 shots again (and two goals) from Gust.
  • Game 7: 2-0 Condors, Starrett shutout, Gust and Callahan scored.
  • Game 8: 7-2 Condors, 3 pts for Benson, 1-1-2 for Bear.

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84 Responses to "Game 1 Pacific Division Semis 2019: Condors at Eagles"

  1. OriginalPouzar says:

    I actually can’t wait to get back to Calgary later today (which is Saturday) to be able to watch the Condors in the playoffs and pay closer attention to the Guelph/Saginaw series.

    Won’t be able to watch this game – about an hour away from a 4 hour trip to get to Narita airport – may be able to tune in from the lunge before the flight with my AHL TV (connect to the work system so “the internet” thinks I’m in Canada).

    Anyways, I given what I interpreted from Woody on the Gregor show on Wed, I don’t think we’ll see Bouchard tonight. The incumbent 7:

    Lagesson/Jones
    Lowe/Bear
    Stanton/Day

    Kulevich
    Manning

    Bouchard.

    Obviously Bouchard would play ahead of Manning and Kulevich but its tough to take any of the incumbent 6 at this point. I would like to see Jay work Bouchard in for Stanton and Day and am guessing we may see that for game 3 at home. Maybe Bouch gets in and make it impossible for Jay W. to take him out – a solid 12 plus games of AHL playoff intensity will give the org some solid intel on Bouchard – more than they will gather from camp.

    Bear is back in tonight.

    No official word on Yamamoto yet but, from what I interpreted on Wed, with Jay saying he remains “day to day” and then going on to talk about all the forwards they’ve got back – I don’t think he’s playing.

    Go Condors!

  2. OriginalPouzar says:

    Woodcroft confirmed on Wed he’s starting with the following top 6 and the bottom 6 will be “in flux”

    Benson/Marody/Currie
    Russell/Malone/Joe G.

  3. Bulging Twine says:

    Wooo! Playoffs baby!

    This will be a beneficial development experience for the kids. Especially if they and the opposition can elevate their games.
    Let’s see who brings the intensity and who shrinks.

  4. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bouchard won’t play. No surprise there.

  5. OriginalPouzar says:

    Rodrigue dressed for Drummondville but not starting.

    Good to see him with the equipment on though. It’s been a while.

  6. Ryan says:

    Talk to people around the game and they have a different expectation. He now can take time and wait to see what materializes in the GM world. He has the ability to sit back and see if the ideal situation emerges. You certainly can’t blame him if he’s decided Edmonton isn’t it.

    From Craig Custance at the Athletic.

  7. Bulging Twine says:

    Matt Mosewich

    @EDMFutureWatch
    5m5 minutes ago
    More
    Condors Lines:

    Gambardella – Malone – Russell
    Benson – Currie – Marody
    Polei – Vesel – Gust
    Hebig – Esposito – Callahan

    Lowe – Bear
    Lagesson – Jones
    Stanton – Day

  8. OriginalPouzar says:

    Again, not a surprise but no Yamamoto tonight.

  9. OriginalPouzar says:

    Malone puts Condors up by 1 early.

  10. OriginalPouzar says:

    Willie L. and Russell with the apples.

  11. Lowetide says:

    Malone from Lagesson and Russell. That line does good work.

  12. OriginalPouzar says:

    Lowetide:
    Malone from Lagesson and Russell. That line does good work.

    It’s a hugely important line and I don’t thinks it’s a coincidence that they lost a few when Joe and Malone (and Currie) were up with the Oilers and Russell was hurt.

  13. Lowetide says:

    OriginalPouzar: It’s a hugely important line and I don’t thinks it’s a coincidence that they lost a few when Joe and Malone (and Currie) were up with the Oilers and Russell was hurt.

    Woodcroft really uses them well too, they grind the opponent and make everything difficult.

  14. CapeBretonOilers says:

    is there a feed for the game

  15. OriginalPouzar says:

    1-1 early in the 2nd.

  16. OriginalPouzar says:

    CapeBretonOilers:
    is there a feed for the game

    AHL TV – cost is nominal.

  17. Lowetide says:

    Lagesson from Jones and Russell. 2-1 Bakersfield.

  18. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jones feeds Lagesson and the Condors are up 2-1.

    Goal and assist for Lagesson and 2 apples for Russell.

  19. Lowetide says:

    Gorgeous pass by Jones on the Lagesson goal. Lordy.

  20. Bulging Twine says:

    So if the Condors win the Calder Cup is Woodcroft an Oilers Head Coaching candidate?

  21. Professor Q says:

    Bulging Twine:
    So if the Condors win the Calder Cup is Woodcroft an Oilers Head Coaching candidate?

    Maybe after another year or two. He might be good for developing Edmonton’s prospects, you know?

    If he’s fast-tracked, that would be odd. What would Todd Nelson think?!

  22. Bulging Twine says:

    Professor Q: Maybe after another year or two. He might be good for developing Edmonton’s prospects, you know?

    If he’s fast-tracked, that would be odd. What would Todd Nelson think?!

    He definitely gets an A+ from me on player development.

    By most accounts the Oilers are hiring a new coach this year. If it isn’t Woodcroft and he wins the Calder he is on many teams radar. Unless the Oilers new coach is a complete tire fire he’ll be here at least two seasons by which time Woodcroft may be in the NHL with another team. Another treasure lost.
    hmmm

  23. OriginalPouzar says:

    I don’t know what his contract status is, however, if Woodcroft has an Oiler contract for next year then he can’t just take a job with another org.

    I think he likely is signed through next year given McLellan’s contract ran in to at least next year (the Oilers struck a deal with the Kings along with McClellan signing there).

  24. Lowetide says:

    Logan Day makes it 3-2.

  25. OriginalPouzar says:

    Eagles tie it up but not for long as Logan Day restores the lead, from Malone and Joe G.

  26. Bulging Twine says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    I don’t know what his contract status is, however, if Woodcroft has an Oiler contract for next year then he can’t just take a job with another org.

    I think he likely is signed through next year given McLellan’s contract ran in to at least next year (the Oilers struck a deal with the Kings along with McClellan signing there).

    I wonder if the rule for management applies to coaches as well. Do you know? The rule that says they can leave one club for another if there is a promotion involved. ie. Assistant GM –> GM or Head Amateur Scout (Al Murray) —> Assistant GM

  27. smellyglove says:

    Are not more of you watching the imminent downfall of the Flames?

  28. Professor Q says:

    Calgary possibly on the verge of elimination. This is a sweet day.

    Unfortunately the Leafs won but still time in that series. Hopefully Goaltender Interference is less random in the next few games.

  29. OriginalPouzar says:

    Don’t know about that but, unless that’s written in to the contract (or deemed included), then, no.

  30. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors Win!

    Totally jacked to try and stay up for Game 2 later tonight.

  31. Professor Q says:

    Wow. Gaudreau had a Stefan incident prior to one of the Avalanche’s goals? That’s hilarious.

  32. Lowetide says:

    Condors win Game 1.

  33. Westchester Oil says:

    4-1 Avs. Yummy, yummy, yummy, I’ve got love in my tummy.

  34. Bulging Twine says:

    alright, alright, alright

  35. leadfarmer says:

    Loving this Avs game. Most people didn’t have them making the playoffs but that top line is a bute.
    Yes Jost hasn’t developed
    But McKinnon is a top 3 player in the league and rantanen isn’t far behind

  36. Réal Goudenyéu says:

    The flames don’t look like the same team that finished first in the conference.

  37. Bulging Twine says:

    It wouldn’t be a good look for the Oilers to deny an AHL coach the opportunity to coach in the NHL

    – I was referring to the following season, not this upcoming season

  38. OriginalPouzar says:

    Jones and Bear were each over 20 min tonight – as 21 year olds in their first pro playoff games.

  39. OriginalPouzar says:

    Loving what’s going on in Calgary tonight.

  40. leadfarmer says:

    Réal Goudenyéu:
    The flames don’t look like the same team that finished first in the conference.

    I know they finished first but a lot of people did not believe much in them And

  41. flyfish1168 says:

    Smith is coming back to earth

  42. leadfarmer says:

    flyfish1168:
    Smith is coming back to earth

    He’s had a hard season
    But this postseason cannot be blamed on him
    When you face 26, 39, 56, 52, and on pace 40 shots the goalie is not to blame

  43. Derek says:

    flyfish1168:
    Smith is coming back to earth

    Flickers being outshot 173-135 in the series up to this point, while trailing the majority of that time. If Calgary loses its not on Smith at all. With someone else in net they probably get swept.

  44. Chief Inspector says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Loving what’s going on in Calgary tonight.

    Warm fuzzy feelings all around.

  45. pts2pndr says:

    Lowetide:
    Logan Day makes it 3-2.

    Is Logan Day goig to get an nhl contract?

  46. flyfish1168 says:

    leadfarmer: He’s had a hard season
    But this postseason cannot be blamed on him
    When you face 26, 39, 56, 52, and on pace 40 shots the goalie is not to blame

    Derek: Flickers being outshot 173-135 in the series up to this point, while trailing the majority of that time.If Calgary loses its not on Smith at all.With someone else in net they probably get swept.

    Not blaming smith. But tonight he is not as sharp as the previous game

    Makar having a good game. Very happy for him

  47. Reja says:

    Flames top minute players just can’t handle the physicality of playoff hockey what a bunch of whiners gotta love it.

  48. Reja says:

    flyfish1168:
    Not blaming smith. But tonight he is not as sharp as the previous game

    Makar having a good game. Very happy for him

    Smith’s a hotdog nice to see him get burned tonight.

  49. leadfarmer says:

    Reja:
    Flames top minute players just can’t handle the physicality of playoff hockey what a bunch of whiners gotta love it.

    They looked at the Lucic contract and said yeah were cool with that
    0 points. -3

  50. Johnny skid says:

    Reja:
    Flames top minute players just can’t handle the physicality of playoff hockey what a bunch of whiners gotta love it.

    Monahan has been invisible.

  51. Bulging Twine says:

    Benson – Marody – Currie with the rare goose egg

  52. Professor Q says:

    Jerseys and playoff games are highly expensive.

    People are unwise.

  53. leadfarmer says:

    This one is not too shocking
    I think a lot of people had big question marks about this Flames team

  54. Reja says:

    Johnny skid: Monahan has been invisible.

    I don’t thick Neal will be none to happy being benched who has more value or is less painful to trade I think you have to give the edge to Lucic

  55. Suntory Hanzo says:

    Tampa and Calgary combining for 1 more playoff win than Edmonton.

    Hopefully Calgary goes squirelly and does something rash (bold) in the offseason.

  56. Reja says:

    Flames get completely owned nice to see Norris trophy Gio completely invisible looks good on him.

  57. Johnny skid says:

    Reja: I don’t thick Neal will be none to happy being benched who has more value or is less painful to trade I think you have to give the edge to Lucic

    Neal wore out his welcome in a hurry with the flames for sure.

  58. Reja says:

    Suntory Hanzo:
    Tampa and Calgary combining for 1 more playoff win than Edmonton.

    Hopefully Calgary goes squirelly and does something rash (bold) in the offseason.

    Flames have to do something they got pushed around like school girls their fans are embarrassed and mad gotto love it.

  59. OriginalPouzar says:

    Condors grind out a big game 1 win and the flames blown out at home to get eliminated – all on the same morning/early aft? What a day this has been so far – and its a day that’s going to have 39 hours for me as well….

  60. Bulging Twine says:

    Let’s hope Tkachuk holds out for a gazillion dollars

  61. OriginalPouzar says:

    pts2pndr: Is Logan Day goig to get an nhl contract?

    I think he’s earned an NHL contract (2-way) but don’t seem him every really being an NHL option.

    His defensive game and play away from the puck has indeed come a very long way this year but, given where its started, from my eye, its still go a very long ways to go.

  62. Bulging Twine says:

    Sam Bennett got a lot of love from the media. Hope that drives up his contract a few dollars.

    Tkachuk and Bennett RFA’s

    Hathaway is UFA. Hope he leaves. Dirty.

  63. OriginalPouzar says:

    flyfish1168:
    Not blaming smith. But tonight he is not as sharp as the previous game

    Makar having a good game. Very happy for him

    He’s a stud. I think he won the Hobey Baker this year, didn’t he?

    Its always wild to me when an amateur can play their first pro games in the NHL playoffs and, not only succeed, but be a difference maker.

  64. Reja says:

    Cassie Hrudey and Button those three Suck a golfball through a garden hose Flame homers are gonna have a group cry together tonight.

  65. Bulging Twine says:

    Spencer Foo is 25

  66. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bulging Twine:
    Benson – Marody – Currie with the rare goose egg

    Not surprisingly, the re-united Russell/Malone/Joe G line had a plus night (from accounts) – they have been unreal good on the forecheck in 2019.

  67. Bulging Twine says:

    No Chiasson signing yet

  68. OriginalPouzar says:

    Reja: I don’t thick Neal will be none to happy being benched who has more value or is less painful to trade I think you have to give the edge to Lucic

    I think its still Neal:

    1) Hasn’t been as bad for nearly as long

    2) No trade protection – remember, Lucic’s NMC makes him a must-protect in the expansion draft and I’m sure he makes the clause continuing a condition of waiving for any interim trade

    3) No signing bonus so the buyout is not a non-option.

  69. OriginalPouzar says:

    Bulging Twine:
    No Chiasson signing yet

    There should not be any rush to sign that player, in particular if he is requesting more than 2 years or more than $1.5M.

  70. SK Oiler Fan says:

    Man, Peters sounds like an intelligent hockey guy. Impressive in defeat. He will be in management eventually.

  71. Bulging Twine says:

    OriginalPouzar: There should not be any rush to sign that player, in particular if he is requesting more than 2 years or more than $1.5M.

    Having been on one year contracts or PTO’s for a while now I would guess his main goal is term on a one way contract.

  72. Bulging Twine says:

    Bulging Twine: Having been on one year contracts or PTO’s for a while now I would guess his main goal is term on a one way contract.

    3 years/ 1.333

  73. flyfish1168 says:

    OriginalPouzar: He’s a stud.I think he won the Hobey Baker this year, didn’t he?

    Its always wild to me when an amateur can play their first pro games in the NHL playoffs and, not only succeed, but be a difference maker.

    He did win the HB and scored his 1st NHL goal in his 1st game. He is going to be a good one. Avs going to be tough for a long time. Going to add another skilled player this draft.

  74. Reja says:

    OriginalPouzar: I think its still Neal:

    1) Hasn’t been as bad for nearly as long

    2) No trade protection – remember, Lucic’s NMC makes him a must-protect in the expansion draft and I’m sure he makes the clause continuing a condition of waiving for any interim trade

    3) No signing bonus so the buyout is not a non-option.

    Will see but all I hear and see is heaviness and toughness is making a comeback this playoff. If the Oilers would have meshed and made the playoffs they would have made a better run then the Flames who looked weak confused and frustrated the whole series.

  75. Reja says:

    SK Oiler Fan:
    Man, Peters sounds like an intelligent hockey guy. Impressive in defeat. He will be in management eventually.

    Chop wood and carry water could bullshit as well. Peters has won sweet F all as a Coach.

  76. Bruce McCurdy says:

    Player grades & commentary from tonight’s win by the Condors. We’re going to give the farm team our full attention for the next while.

  77. OriginalPouzar says:

    Awesome – thanks Bruce.

    Will have some extra reading for the flight – it’s only 10 hours though – isn’t all that long.

  78. Bulging Twine says:

    James Kozyra

    @jameskozyra
    Follow Follow @jameskozyra
    More
    Cale Makar, who wasn’t even signed when the series started, outscored Johnny Gaudreau in round one #GoAvsGo

  79. GMB3 says:

    Reja: Chop wood and carry water could bullshit as well. Peters has won sweet F all as a Coach.

    Look at you. Quintessential hockey man

  80. dolenator says:

    OriginalPouzar,

    And it is such a smooth stream

  81. OriginalPouzar says:

    OriginalPouzar:
    Condors grind out a big game 1 win and the flames blown out at home to get eliminated – all on the same morning/early aft? What a day this has been so far – and its a day that’s going to have 39 hours for me as well….

    I guess this isn’t going to happen.

    I was on the plane when the delay notices started. Eventually they said to get off the plane. After 5 more hours and four more delay notices, the flight is cancelled.

    New flight tomorrow at the same time. Everyone on the flight is simply on the new one.

    Thank god for business class as, once they got organized, they are taking great care of us – priority everything and no hotel voucher but set up at the Sheraton and currently on a shuttle there.

    No Condors for me. Actually, we get shuttled back to airport at 1130 Sunday morning which is 8:30 mountain Saturday night. I may get a period in.

  82. Reja says:

    GMB3: Look at you. Quintessential hockey man

    Flames were soft and weak with Peters behind the helm. Have you been watching the Hurricanes go at it with Washington Brindamour is doing a hell of a job.

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