2019-20 Game Six: Oilers at Blackhawks

by Lowetide

Everyone remembers the first game against the Chicago Blackhawks. It was in historic Chicago Stadium and it was the first game in Oilers NHL history. The game here, the Wednesday night in late November 1979, that’s a good one to remember. Close game, Oilers get two quick ones in the third and then an EN goal. Old Tony Esposito, with webs sewn everywhere to stop the puck and legends on every line. It was a wonderful time in Edmonton.

Here’s a fun game to play when you’re bored. At 11:45 of the first period in that November game, Wayne Gretzky and Stan Mikita took penalties. How many players do we need to get from those two men through today, and then back to 1915, using only teammates?

Well, Gretzky played with Alexei Kovalev, whose last season was 2012-13. Jonathan Huberdeau was Kovalev’s teammate, so it took two men to get us to today. What about backwards? Well, Stan Mikita played with Ted Lindsay in his rookie season, and Lindsay played with Syd Howe when he was a freshman. Syd Howe played as a rookie with Frank Nighbor, that takes us to 1915. So, to get through 104 NHL seasons, it’s Nighbor to Howe to Lindsay to Mikita to Gretzky to Kovalev to Huberdeau. I’ve done this forever. It can be a blast.

THE ATHLETIC!

The Athletic Edmonton features a fabulous cluster of stories (some linked below, some on the site). Great perspective from a ridiculous group of writers and analysts. Proud to be part of The Athletic, there is a Puck Drop Special offer here.

  • New Lowetide: Raphael Lavoie delivers high-octane offence to lead Oilers prospect performances.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Mike Smith is charged up, and that’s a big reason behind the Oilers’ surprising 5-0 start
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: 4 positives in the Oilers’ 4 wins that may not be sustainable
  • Lowetide: Oilers’ Oscar Klefbom playing tough minutes with inexperienced partners — and looking good doing it
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: ‘He’s addicted to getting better’: What the Oilers are saying about Connor McDavid’s amazing start
  • Eric Duhatschek: The lasting impact of The Gretzky Effect, 40 years after his NHL debut
  • Jonathan Willis: Oilers who could win (or lose) NHL jobs early in 2019-20
  • Lowetide: Several unproven players are earning NHL jobs and increasing roster quality and depth. No balance photo, but some traction early.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Why Riley Sheahan could be a key ingredient the Oilers have been missing
  • Jonathan Willis: Bet on James Neal rebounding with Oilers, just not all the way
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: How Joel Persson went from being a part-time teacher three years ago to patrolling the Oilers blue line (this is exceptional).
  • Lowetide: Keeping an eye on Jesse Puljujarvi: Which teams could emerge as potential trade partners?
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Q&A: Oscar Klefbom on being a mentor, his strategy for staying healthy and saying goodbye to a friend.
  • Daniel and Jon: Ten bold (and not so bold) predictions for the Oilers this season
  • Corey Pronman: Oilers No. 9 farm system.
  • Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.

OILERS IN OCTOBER

  • Oilers in October 2015: 2-4-0, goal differential -4
  • Oilers in October 2016: 5-1-0, goal differential +7
  • Oilers in October 2017: 2-4-0, goal differential -7
  • Oilers in October 2018: 3-3-0, goal differential -6
  • Oilers in October 2019: 5-0-0, goal differential +8

At some point the Oilers will run into bad luck early and the game will get away from them, and we’ll see an “L”. Tonight, Edmonton would appear to be the better team based on early results, but you never know. I think that top line, combined with competent goaltending, is close enough to the 2016 team for us to draw a direct comparable.

WHAT TO EXPECT FROM OCTOBER

  • At home to: Vancouver, Los Angeles (Expected: 1-1-0) (Actual 2-0-0)
  • On the road to: NYI, NJD, NYR, CHI (Expected 2-1-1) Actual (3-0-0)
  • At home to: Philadelphia, Detroit (Expected 1-1-0)
  • On the road to: Winnipeg, Minnesota (Expected 1-1-0)
  • At home to: Washington, Florida (Expected 1-1-0)
  • On the road to: Detroit, Columbus (Expected 1-1-0)
  • Overall expected result: 7-6-1, 15 points in 14 games
  • Current results: 5-0-0, 10 points after 5 games

Could the Oilers post 20 points in this month? Say, 9-3-2? That would be 4-3-2 from here. I’d say 8-4-2 is completely reasonable. That would mean going 3-4-2 from here.

2019-20 EDMONTON OILERS

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Mrs. Lowetide and I are sitting in our family room, the dog has stolen my coyote blanket and is sleeping beside her. Traitor. This has been a good year, I’m thankful for many blessings and aware that good fortune has walked beside me for many years now. There are regrets and things I’d love to do over, but one suspects we all have those life experiences along the way. The kids are working/going to school, I’ve concluded the world they’ll live in is exactly nothing like the one I’ve traveled. There’s good and bad in that statement. I worry about them, this young group coming up. I guess my Mom and Dad worried about us too, it just seems as though the earth is moving underneath our feet more in these last few years. Stay close to those you hold dear, know that family can be anyone in your circle of influence. I suspect we’re going to be going back to tight knit families, Grandma and Grandpa living with the kids and their kids and maybe that’s okay. Be well. Take care of yourself. Happy Thanksgiving!

OILERS ’19-20 (’16-17) AT FIVE ON FIVE

  • Corsi: 47.87 (49.99)
  • Fenwick: 47.92 (50.96)
  • Shots: 45.32 (51.06)
  • Goals: 52.17 (54.25)
  • Expected Goals: 50.66 (50.57)
  • Scoring chances: 49.45 (50.06)
  • Shooting percentage: 13.04 (8.28)
  • Save Percentage: 90.9 (92.72)
  • PDO: 103.1 (101.0)

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CallighenMan

GMB3: He actually makes good points so I don’t agree that he is a troll. So what if he cheers for a different team, who cares, he adds to the discussion for the most part.

He is the very definition of s troll with his leading statements and Trumpism’s (making declarations about the Oilers or about how great Vancouver or Cowtown is withmade up “facts” (historically, for example, how the Wild were going to be in – if I am remembering correctly – “5 of the next 8 Cup finals” could be slightly off but he was having inappropriate dreams about Charlie Coyle because he was one of the many stars that were going to lead the Wild to the promised land while the Oilers were $hiite. And that defenseman there who was supposed to be so much better than Klefbom… The troll part really show up when you call him on his selective use of stats (not talking about the last 24 hrs) and his constantly shifting the conversation to mislead or incite the populace.
Not sure if he really believes all he spouts but certainly some of it is just to incite anger and frustration. Surely he must have something better to do.
If he was so upstanding he wouldn’t have half a dozen handles and keep getting banned from various sites.

BONE207

Pouzar: So which hockey axiom will “win/lose” out on Wed?
2nd of a back to back or first game home after a road trip?

You forgot this option…
Time to get back home, play with the wives and kids and get ready for Philly.

The wives will win. Brazilian soccer coaches will shudder.

https://time.com/2894263/world-cup-sex-soccer/

hags9k

I thought Smith was good. I also thought we were the better team in the first and if we had cashed just one of a number of chances we would likely have earned a Bettman point.

But in the end, there were too many passengers on lines 3 and 4 and the top forwards were a half beat off the rhythm.

I think we can all agree though that the biggest positive last night was when I realized how much Bear reminds me of Staios! That’s a major development people.

jp

I guess it’s back to Koskinen on Wednesday.

He won his only start against the Flyers last year (1 GA on 32 shots, at home last December). Smith gave up 4G on 14 shots but didn’t get a decision in his only appearance vs Philadelphia last season.

Some other goalie splits from last year:
Koskinen:
Home – 14-8-3 2.64 .916
Away – 11-13-3 3.20 .896

Smith:
Home – 13-8-1 2.97 .889
Away – 10-8-1 2.64 .908

Should they just start Koskinen at home and Smith on the road all year?

Koskinen on x days rest:
0 5GP 1-4-0 4.38 .851
1 25GP 12-9-3 2.78 .908
2 11GP 5-3-2 3.25 .899
3+ 14GP 7-5-1 2.40 .926

Smith on x days rest:
0 1GP 0-1-0 5.02 .808
1 15GP 11-3-1 2.44 .907
2 3GP 3-0-0 3.00 .899
3+ 23GP 9-12-1 2.77 .896

Hopefully we never see either guy play back to back again, and Koskinen should be rested and primed for a good game on Wednesday!

Pouzar

jp:
OriginalPouzar,

It will be interesting to see for sure.

Lots of talk about the Flyers good start and underlying numbers.They’ve had just as easy a schedule as the Oilers though – Chicago, New Jersey, Vancouver. They look like good team for sure but they haven’t faced any tough opponents yet either.

True.

jp

OriginalPouzar,

Pouzar: So which hockey axiom will “win/lose” out on Wed?
2nd of a back to back or first game home after a road trip?

It will be interesting to see for sure.

Lots of talk about the Flyers good start and underlying numbers.They’ve had just as easy a schedule as the Oilers though – Chicago, New Jersey, Vancouver. They look like good team for sure but they haven’t faced any tough opponents yet either.

Pouzar

OriginalPouzar:
Tough game last night.

Smith was excellent except for the second goal which was on him and a backbreaker.

The team had their chances to be ahead – breakaways from Leon, Archie, McDavid.A crossbar.A couple really good saves by Crawford.

Don’t get me wrong, they were definitely outplayed but in the game until the end.No breaks last night.

Time to get back home, play with the wives and kids and get ready for Philly.

Going to be a great game on Wed.

So which hockey axiom will “win/lose” out on Wed?
2nd of a back to back or first game home after a road trip?

OriginalPouzar

Tough game last night.

Smith was excellent except for the second goal which was on him and a backbreaker.

The team had their chances to be ahead – breakaways from Leon, Archie, McDavid. A crossbar. A couple really good saves by Crawford.

Don’t get me wrong, they were definitely outplayed but in the game until the end. No breaks last night.

Time to get back home, play with the wives and kids and get ready for Philly.

Going to be a great game on Wed.

Pouzar

GMB3: Apparently the xGF% are low this year. EvolvingWild on twitter had a few threads on it tonight. There’s been errors with how the NHL is tracking shot date this year, so the xGF% has been lower than it should be in comparison to manually tracked data (I think that’s what he meant, anyways)

I asked Sean Tierney about it and he DM’d me saying that “this year shot location recording has resulted in all shots being recorded a few feet further out than normal. It’s still unclear if it’s a sample size issue or something systemic that will affect things all year”.

meanashell11

GMB3: He actually makes good points so I don’t agree that he is a troll. So what if he cheers for a different team, who cares, he adds to the discussion for the most part.

He does not make good points. He cherry picks stats to start fights. So what if we are DFL in shots, we are still clear of the lames and dys in the stat that counts. He should be banned again.He makes this place worse by his antics.

GMB3

Gagnongoeshelf:
The epitome of a troll, has been for the last 15 years or more.

Is the big bad internet troll hurting your feelings?

Oilerguy

The epitome of a troll, has been for the last 15 years or more.

Oilerguy

GMB3,

Lol are you new?

GMB3

CallighenMan:

He actually makes good points so I don’t agree that he is a troll. So what if he cheers for a different team, who cares, he adds to the discussion for the most part.

GMB3

According to hockeyviz, the oilers are 20% below league average I’m unblocked 5v5 shots for, but ten % better than average defensively. I know they state this sample sizes are too small to really definitively portray an accurate picture, but it’s nice to see the Oilers be above average in their own end. Throughout all the data Micah McCurdy has published on his website, the Oilers were closest to average last season at 2% below.

CallighenMan

Admiral Ackbar: Don’t mistake a nihilist for a troll. If you disagree, make an argument. If you want to digress into insults, please find the like at Oilers Nation.

Keep it classy.

Disagreed about what it is. If it looks like a troll, walks like a troll and talks like a troll then it IS a troll.

GMB3

Pouzar:
Despite enjoying a top 10 shooting % it’s interesting to note that Oilers are under-performing in terms of GF%(48) vs xGF% (49.62).

Apparently the xGF% are low this year. EvolvingWild on twitter had a few threads on it tonight. There’s been errors with how the NHL is tracking shot date this year, so the xGF% has been lower than it should be in comparison to manually tracked data (I think that’s what he meant, anyways)

v4ance

Well only 13 more Neal goals and we’re giving up a 3rd rounder to the Flames! The second best player in the deal!

CallighenMan

Harpers Hair: If you’re going to be a total asshole dickhead dumbass acknowledge that the the Oilers SF/GM is 31st in the league.

Hey, he’s not you so why don’t you just GTFO

Numenius

BONE207: Hell ya. About 120 litres of it. Only have a cistern so we filled that up.
Dallas would be proud…except for not actually chopping wood.

Nice work. Lol.

Oilerguy

Harpers Hair,

Ready troll?

Oilerguy

BONE207,

Lmao, Dallas sure would be at that.

BONE207

Numenius: Don’t tell me you didn’t carry water.

Hell ya. About 120 litres of it. Only have a cistern so we filled that up.
Dallas would be proud…except for not actually chopping wood.

Oilerguy

JimmyV1965,

Screw DSF!

Oilerguy

Oh man sorry guys been awhile kinda lost here. Anyway happy Thanksgiving to all and GOILERS!

JimmyV1965

Harpers Hair: Yep.
The toughest test the Oilers have faced this season.
Shot differential of +8/game.
Lowest shots/game allowed in the league.
Best FO% in the league,
Have only allowed 1 goal per game over 5 games.
Second best PP in the league.
Quality team.

By the way, did you Markstrom is taking a leave of absence? You better hope it’s a short one.

Numenius

BONE207:
A belated Happy Thanksgiving Gang!!!
Spent the weekend away but still followed some of the comments.

Out at the cabin, raked up the leaves
Took out the chain saw, cut down 5 trees.
Racked & stacked the lumber, drinking well deserved beer
Turkey was great & for all Lowetidians, a Thanksgiving cheer.

Don’t tell me you didn’t carry water.

Oilerguy

Sorry all just playing with stuff
BONE207,

Sounds like a fantastic weekend, Happy Thanksgiving!
Gagnongoeshelf,

BONE207,

Happy Thanksgiving

Admiral Ackbar

BONE207:
A belated Happy Thanksgiving Gang!!!
Spent the weekend away but still followed some of the comments.

Out at the cabin, raked up the leaves
Took out the chain saw, cut down 5 trees.
Racked & stacked the lumber, drinking well deserved beer
Turkey was great & for all Lowetidians, a Thanksgiving cheer.

+99

Oilerguy

Sorry all just playing with stuff

BONE207

A belated Happy Thanksgiving Gang!!!
Spent the weekend away but still followed some of the comments.

Out at the cabin, raked up the leaves
Took out the chain saw, cut down 5 trees.
Racked & stacked the lumber, drinking well deserved beer
Turkey was great & for all Lowetidians, a Thanksgiving cheer.

Oilerguy

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours Allen Mitchell

JimmyV1965

Pouzar: Philly will be a tough test. Tops in CF% and xGF% .

Ya. The flyers are the best team we have faced this year and it might not be close. It’s at the end of a back to back though and the end of a road trip. Hopefully they crush the Flames tomorrow and let off the gas a bit when they arrive in Edmonton.

Admiral Ackbar

Also, I don’t want to live in a world where the Oil don’t go 82-0 this season….

I’m distraught…. ?

Oilerguy

Holy talk about a blast through the past Allen!

Admiral Ackbar

Pouzar: Time to pay the emotional insurance premium again.

I’m sure there are monetary hedges that could solve that problem! I wonder if you can bet by the goal. Say $25 on the GA, would that make things numb?

Admiral Ackbar

oilersfan:
Harpers Hair,

I will never understand what motivates a person to go where some people are unhappy and kick them while they are down

What kind of human does that?

Not a classy one. Not a good one . Not a happy one

Don’t mistake a nihilist for a troll. If you disagree, make an argument. If you want to digress into insults, please find the like at Oilers Nation.

Keep it classy.

Pescador

Pouzar,

Uh oh, and here I am tapped out again,

Pouzar

Pescador: 1st game back home after an extended albiet successful road trip.
I’m sure everything will be just fine
Gulp

Time to pay the emotional insurance premium again.

Pescador

Pouzar: Philly will be a tough test. Tops in CF% and xGF% .

1st game back home after an extended albiet successful road trip.
I’m sure everything will be just fine
Gulp

oilersfan

Harpers Hair,

I am not a total asshole dickhead

I don’t go to a place where people are already irritated and make smarmy negative comments

That’s what you are doing

I am pointing out the obvious

I will never understand what motivates a person to go where some people are unhappy and kick them while they are down

What kind of human does that?

Not a classy one. Not a good one . Not a happy one

Pouzar

Despite enjoying a top 10 shooting % it’s interesting to note that Oilers are under-performing in terms of GF%(48) vs xGF% (49.62).

Numenius

Good to see Ralph’s team at the top of the league today.

Munny

Pouzar: Philly will be a tough test. Tops in CF% and xGF% .

Agreed. I like how the opening of this season is structured to tell you the truth, Fairly cushy start with escalating opponents. Unique play styles like tonight. Puzzles they’re going to have to figure out to be successful. Can they step up?

I like the indications so far, but they’re 1-2 players away from consistent goodness, I think, depending on the players.

Need one now, one at the TD.

Harpers Hair

Pouzar: Philly will be a tough test. Tops in CF% and xGF% .

Yep.
The toughest test the Oilers have faced this season.
Shot differential of +8/game.
Lowest shots/game allowed in the league.
Best FO% in the league,
Have only allowed 1 goal per game over 5 games.
Second best PP in the league.
Quality team.

Munny

Pescador: Gotcha, as far as wheat beers are concerned IMO Erdinger is the gold standard.
Matter of fact it’s the first beer I recommend to anyone who has not tried anything other then Coors lite, Budweiser or Canadian

Oh its gonna go down this throat at some point. I’ve heard too much about it. It would be like not knowing the taste of Corona. I just need to be in the mood to drink wheat to drink wheat. …heh.

Pouzar

Munny:
The Oil were flummoxed by the Hawks up-pressure game.Coming at the end of a road trip, that was a real test and they didn’t get it done tonight.They’ll need some coaching to handle the Hawks and similar playing teams.

But they didn’t really quail under the pressure of the score tonight, kept trying to be aggressive, tents didn’t get folded.Having battle is half the battle.

Can they rebound straight away?…Would you bet against them?

Philly will be a tough test. Tops in CF% and xGF% .

Harpers Hair

Pouzar:
Oilers are dead last in Shots For/60 (5v5).

Just sayin.

This.

Harpers Hair

oilersfan:
Oilers have 26.2 shots per game

If you are going to be a total asshole dickhead troll at least get your numbers right

If you’re going to be a total asshole dickhead dumbass acknowledge that the the Oilers SF/GM is 31st in the league.

Munny

The Oil were flummoxed by the Hawks up-pressure game. Coming at the end of a road trip, that was a real test and they didn’t get it done tonight. They’ll need some coaching to handle the Hawks and similar playing teams.

But they didn’t really quail under the pressure of the score tonight, kept trying to be aggressive, tents didn’t get folded. Having battle is half the battle.

Can they rebound straight away? …Would you bet against them?