2019-20 Game 17: Blues at Oilers

Tonight’s game against the St. Louis Blues will be a good test for the Oilers. The Pacific Division looks like it could land four teams in the playoffs next spring due to wayward starts in the Central. The key is to keep adding points, a regulation win here, a Bettman point there, a shootout victory around the corner. This should be a fun game, but both standings points will cost blood, sweat and tears.

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: How far away is Evan Bouchard and what role will he play with the Oilers?
  • New Scott Wheeler: Analyzing Jesse Puljujarvi’s play in Finland to see what he could offer as an NHLer
  • Jonathan Willis: Oilers right to wait until they’re sure before recalling Kailer Yamamoto, Tyler Benson
  • Lowetide:  Can Leon Draisaitl score more than 50 goals this season?
  • Lowetide: Bakersfield Condors coaching staff continues to mold unheralded players into legit NHL prospects.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: Oilers Mailbag: Fixing the forward depth, slotting the big three, a Puljujarvi trade and more
  • Minnia Feng: The 2019-20 Oilers fan guide to emotions and stressful circumstances
  • Jonathan Willis: How much will the Oilers have to pay to keep pending free agent Zack Kassian?
  • Lowetide: Sheahan hurt, Oilers in need of a two-way centre; some candidates emerging
  • Jonathan Willis: Handicapping the chase for the Calder after the first month of the 2019-20 NHL season
  • Jonathan Willis: Unproductive Oilers forwards are in danger of losing their jobs — and soon
  • Lowetide: Analyzing the current state of the Edmonton Oilers goaltending.
  • Daniel Nugent-Bowman: ‘I don’t think anyone’s feeling comfortable’: Oilers’ Holland pleased but cautious amid early improvements.
  • Jonathan Willis: A rare success during Edmonton’s long rebuild, why Oscar Klefbom is the model for finishing Oilers’ blue line
  • Jonathan Willis: Can the Oilers afford to pursue Taylor Hall in free agency?
  • Lowetide: Oilers top 20 prospects summer 2019.

OILERS AFTER 17

  • Oilers in 2015: 6-11-0, 12 points; goal differential -10
  • Oilers in 2016: 9-7-1, 19 points; goal differential +1
  • Oilers in 2017: 6-9-2, 14 points; goal differential -13
  • Oilers in 2018: 8-8-1, 17 points; goal differential -8
  • Oilers in 2019: 10-4-2, 22 points; goal differential +5

If the Oilers can continue to run ahead of those 2016-17 numbers, music! It’ll get tougher, though. Sophomore McDavid’s team went 38-19-8 from here. That’s a romp.

WHAT TO EXPECT IN NOVEMBER

  • On the road to: PIT (Expected 0-1-0) (Actual 1-0-0)
  • At home to: ARI, STL, NJD (Expected 2-1-0) (Actual 0-0-1)
  • On the road to: ANA, SJS (Expected 1-0-1)
  • At home to: COL, DAL (Expected 1-1-0)
  • On the road to: SJS, LAK, VEG, ARI, COL (Expected 2-3-0)
  • At home to: VAN (Expected 1-0-0)
  • Overall expected result: 7-6-1, 15 points in 14 games
  • Current results: 1-0-1, 3 points after two games

I’m 15 games into watching this team and prepared to suggest that we’re looking at a team that is going to push for the playoffs and should be in the mood to buy at the deadline. We’ll know more at the end of November and this week will be important. That single point against the Coyotes was important. Tonight: Same thing. Injuries are, as always, a major worry for a team lacking depth.

OILERS 2019-20

Based on yesterday’s practice, it’s a good guess we see Smith start, Persson sit (Manning drawing in), Granlund healthy scratch and possibly Jurco inserted. It’s also possible Archibald, Sheahan and Nygard get into game action over the next 7-10 days.

WHAT HAS GONE RIGHT?

Ken Holland’s bets are a fascinating group 16 games into the season. Consider:

  • James Neal has 11 goals
  • Mike Smith has a save percentage of .931 in nine games
  • Gaetan Haas has an even strength points per 60 of 1.64

Markus Granlund, Joakim Nygard, Alex Chiasson, Tomas Jurco, Josh Archibald, Riley Sheahan haven’t worked out as of yet for one reason or another. Bear and Persson were roster players, no credit to Holland for those players.

I keep reading about Holland’s signing of Chiasson as a major gaffe, and how he hasn’t really improved the team. I don’t think that’s true. if we’re honest, the Neal and Smith bets have been important parts of this team’s success. Haas, Nygard and Persson still have a chance to succeed. The rest of these names still have a chance to help. So, for those who bury Holland, what exactly did he do to earn your fire? Because I’m thinking he’s looking pretty solid on some major bets here.

LOWDOWN WITH LOWETIDE

At 10 this morning, TSN1260, I love our group of guests today. Bruce McCurdy from the Cult of Hockey will talk Holland the Oilers, Kris Abbott from OddsShark talks NFL, prop bets NHL and Champions League. We’ll also receive a visit from Corey Graham and Andrew Peard (Oil Kings PBP crew) who will chat about the OK-Raiders game last night and what it tells us about both teams. 10-1260 text, @Lowetide on twitter. See you on the radio!

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448 Responses to "2019-20 Game 17: Blues at Oilers"

« Older Comments
  1. Andy Dufresne says:

    We are close.

    All we need is one Hall of fame type player thats Taylor’ed to fit in our lineup.

  2. Munny says:

    Ice Sage:
    Ah well.No dishonor in losing to the SC champs.
    Good fight.

    They sure had plenty of chances to win this one.

  3. jp says:

    Andy Dufresne:
    Zebras blew it tonight

    They didn’t help. Lots of uncalled stuff, but the Oilers inflicted a lot of their own penalty damage. And I feel like Smith could have had any of those 3 goals.

  4. Munny says:

    Ryan: Nicely done.

    I’ve been here for over ten years. I’ve always supported the blog and never resorted to ad hominems.

    That being said, I don’t find your posts to be interesting. I’ll freely admit that you’re the only poster here whom I actually dislike.

    You should maybe look up ad hominem

    I made no reference to you at all. I made a reference to your snide remark.

  5. verdad2.0 says:

    An absolute disgrace
    Holland should be fired tonight
    A team with the two best players in the league should not be humiliated as they were tonight
    Find some talent
    Trade Nurse and RNH tomorrow, overrated , ineffectual bums

  6. verdad2.0 says:

    Munny,

    A huge dishonor
    St Louis is not long on talent
    Just organized, and with a few functional wingers
    More than the Oilers can manage

  7. Andy Dufresne says:

    Dont mnd Tippett elevating guys to the top line to get them going….

    But tonight clearly establishes Kassian as the top option for the top line.

    And its not close.

  8. Munny says:

    Andy Dufresne:
    Zebras blew it tonight

    I thought they were worse last game. And they did give us a game ending powerplay.

    Quinn was right though about the five on three at the end.

  9. Munny says:

    verdad2.0,

    There’s a reason why playoffs are best of seven.

    We can beat that team. Had the opportunities tonight.

  10. drglen says:

    These are games the oilers have to learn how to win..

    Great game by Kass… leave him up there.

    We are a couple pieces short… as Low said, Holland probably waits until Christmas and gives Nygaard a shot here.

    score could have been much worse St Louis missed many open looks early..

    but even so, when skating and back and forth, they oilers seemed even to this team, our team looks like a contender at times, but the sustain is not there.

    let’s hope Kosky gets a hot hand in the next one.

  11. texmex says:

    Fabbri for de la rose?? Did Stevie Y just rob Armstrong?

  12. drglen says:

    verdad2.0:
    Munny,

    A huge dishonor
    St Louis is not long on talent
    Just organized, and with a few functional wingers
    More than the Oilers can manage

    +1 agreed… I thought we could take these guys. St. louis is a pro team that just keeps it coming.. and we just don’t have that level of NHL/pro consistency yet, or not quite the players.

  13. verdad2.0 says:

    Munny,

    So what?
    Holland is wasting time in Europe instead of gutting this team and finding some talent
    Wasting cap space on 3-4 line garbage was insane
    Ever playing Manning and Russell just as stupid

  14. tileguy says:

    I sense the 5 steps of grief will be playing out over the next week or two.
    Lots of denial about this unsustainable playing and staying in first place.
    Lots of anger appearing now. Its the refs fault, Smith should of had it. Holland is a disgrace.
    Pretty soon the bargaining will begin, trade so and so .
    Depression, I cant be bothered watching this team, and finally
    Acceptance which will be draft talk.

  15. Munny says:

    verdad2.0,

    Honest question… Do you think last year’s Oiler team would have played as well tonight?

  16. Harpers Hair says:

    verdad2.0:
    Munny,

    A huge dishonor
    St Louis is not long on talent
    Just organized, and with a few functional wingers
    More than the Oilers can manage

    Oh c’mon.
    STL has a deep, deep team with an elite D corp and great goaltending.

  17. Munny says:

    Harpers Hair,

    *fallsoffthesofa*

  18. verdad2.0 says:

    tileguy,

    You are probably right
    Holland could care less
    And most of the posters on this blog care about Bakersfield and amateur draft than ever holding incompetent management to account
    Chiasson, Granlund, Gagner, Archibald etc are just garbage
    Manning and Russell even worse on defense

  19. verdad2.0 says:

    Harpers Hair,

    Great goaltending?
    Jake Allen got Hitchcock fired
    St Louis is a low talent bur organized team

  20. gregsaint says:

    Is it possible to block certain commenters? Would be nice to not have to sift through the garbage to find interesting posts.

  21. jp says:

    verdad2.0:
    Munny,

    So what?
    Holland is wasting time in Europe instead of gutting this team and finding some talent
    Wasting cap space on 3-4 line garbage was insane
    Ever playing Manning and Russell just as stupid

    Any specific thoughts other than “fire them all into the sun”? What players could be acquired that would be better? And how?

  22. verdad2.0 says:

    gregsaint,

    You must love thought police
    10 plus years of managerial incompetence and no accountability
    We see it again with Holland

  23. jp says:

    verdad2.0,

    Also, I’m really curious what you do with yourself when the Oilers win. We only see one side of you it seems.

  24. verdad2.0 says:

    jp,

    Trade Nurse and RNH tomorrow for starters, overrated
    At least get a collection of wingers that MacDavid deserves
    Toronto and Winnipeg obvious trading partners

  25. jp says:

    verdad2.0:
    jp,

    Trade Nurse and RNH tomorrow for starters, overrated
    At least get a collection of wingers that MacDavid deserves
    Toronto and Winnipeg obvious trading partners

    Fair enough.

    You don’t really think Holland doesn’t care do you?

  26. Harpers Hair says:

    verdad2.0:
    Harpers Hair,

    Great goaltending?
    Jake Allen got Hitchcock fired
    St Louis is a low talent bur organized team
    Binnington. .921.

  27. BONE207 says:

    You are probably right
    Holland could care less
    And most of the posters on this blog care about Bakersfield and amateur draft thanever holding incompetent management to accountChiasson, Granlund, Gagner, Archibald etc are just garbage
    Manning and Russell even worse on defense

    Anger like this is usually displayed by people with abusive husbands. Perhaps a call to 911 would be better to get the help you need rather than lashing out on hockey blogs.

  28. Harpers Hair says:

    gregsaint:
    Is it possible to block certain commenters? Would be nice to not have to sift through the garbage to find interesting posts.

    Would also be nice to block comments like this.

  29. drglen says:

    tileguy:
    I sense the 5 steps of grief will be playing out over the next week or two.
    Lots of denial about this unsustainable playing and staying in first place.
    Lots of anger appearing now. Its the refs fault, Smith should of had it. Holland is a disgrace.
    Pretty soon the bargaining will begin, trade so and so .
    Depression, I cant be bothered watching this team, and finally
    Acceptance which will be draft talk.

    that’s very good.. lol

  30. HT Joe says:

    Harpers Hair: Oh c’mon.
    STL has a deep, deep team with an elite D corp and great goaltending.

    Thank you sir!!

  31. Younger Oil says:

    I know it’s after a loss, but man what an incredible season Draisaitl is having so far.

    -Has at least one point in every game that the Oilers have not been shut out.
    -Has more games with 2 or 3 points than 0 or 1.
    -Has points on over 60% of the team’s goals.

    Definitely one of the Top 10 best contracts in the league.

    I think the Oilers are in huge trouble this season, but he has been an absolute stud.

  32. drglen says:

    Younger Oil:
    I know it’s after a loss, but man what an incredible season Draisaitl is having so far.

    -Has at least one point in every game that the Oilers have not been shut out.
    -Has more games with 2 or 3 points than 0 or 1.
    -Has points on over 60% of the team’s goals.

    Definitely one of the Top 10 best contracts in the league.

    I think the Oilers are in huge trouble this season, but he has been an absolute stud.

    Say did you see that little clip on his offseason training routing? Outdoor cross training, up and down some hill near Prague.. rough terrain. .. I love that!

  33. Andy Dufresne says:

    Munny: I thought they were worse last game.And they did give us a game ending powerplay.

    Quinn was right though about the five on three at the end.

    agreed

  34. gregsaint says:

    Harpers HairWould also be nice to block comments like this.,

    Always nice to have personal control over what we consume in the media.

    Also, funny how some people assume I’m talking about them…I suppose they know they’re posting garbage, hey?

  35. Admiral Ackbar says:

    Where did these 2 clowns come from? I hope they’re intoxicated otherwise they’re simply making themselves look foolish. Heavy on opinions, light on everything else. Please go to ON, that’s your market segment. You’ll fit in perfectly there.

  36. GMB3 says:

    Munny:
    Tell me you don’t enjoy watching this team more than any squad since the playoff year.

    Go ahead, tell me.

    This I shall agree with. There are some pieces in place, and some of the areas we are lacking we have the depth coming up. Our D corps should good in the future. Lacking some top 6 skill though.

  37. jzed says:

    Connor needs to shoot on at least a couple of odd man rushes to keep the goalies and D men honest. Everyone plays the pass 100%, dynamic duo have to cash more odd man chances if Oil are to remain afloat

  38. jzed says:

    Also, the Manning experiment is over, Russell is better on the left side, and we need puck movers on each pairing. Persson back in, Nygard. Archibald back on, more speed needed.

  39. SwedishPoster says:

    If you’re holding the reiging Stanley Cup champs to just 17 ES shots and can trot out McDrai for a third of the game you’re bound to win more than you lose so can’t really be too upset with this one. Having said that the bottom 9(it really is a bottom 9 at this point) needs to provide the big dogs with at least some support offensively. Also agree that the team looks better with Persson in despite his defensive lapses, having three hold on for life D in at the same time is at least one too many(Mannings and a thousand miles). Having a tick up in puckmoving also opens up the ice more through the neutral zone and gives the team better looks, not just scramble plays.

    Chiasson should probably take a seat. You could argue he’s still inside the eight best wingers, although I’m personally not convinced, but either way when he had his hot run at the start of last season he was playing for his career which showed. He moved his feet, was strong on the puck and found the middle of the ice a lot. Now he’s not battling through the rough stuff as consistently just mocking about on the outside looking for a chance to fire his wrister and he’s not nearly skilled enough to play that way.

    Also what the hell has happened to Nuges creativity? I’ve complained before about him being too much meat and potatoes but this season he seems to spend most nights just dumping pucks in and forcing the most obvious plays in the o-zone. Yeah linemates but he has a shooter on his line, find ways to get him the puck.

  40. Wilde says:

    gregsaint:
    Is it possible to block certain commenters? Would be nice to not have to sift through the garbage to find interesting posts.

    Train your eyes to usernames while scrolling and only stop on the ones you want to

  41. Wilde says:

    SwedishPoster:
    Also what the hell has happened to Nuges creativity? I’ve complained before about him being too much meat and potatoes but this season he seems to spend most nights just dumping pucks in and forcing the most obvious plays in the o-zone. Yeah linemates but he has a shooter on his line, find ways to get him the puck.

    I’m fairly convinced at this point that both he and Larsson are testament to the profound power of early-career mentorship and coaching.

  42. Munny says:

    I don’t think Draisaitl just played good tonight (despite the penalty). I thought he played with real fire and brimstone.

    That man is a leader.

    He might attract more players than The McDeity.

  43. Dr. Taboggan says:

    What do you all think it would cost to acquire Zucker and Staal from the Wild?

  44. Dr. Taboggan says:

    Dr. Taboggan,

    Actually nevermind Staal. He has another season on his contract.

    But what about Zucker? Seems like a Hall-lite option. Signed for a reasonable cap hit for three more seasons.

  45. OriginalPouzar says:

    With Sheahan and Archie ready to play on Friday, one roster spot will need to be opened – I would think P. Russell at this point. Could be Cave. Jurco – would need waivers. Granlund in the conversation but I don’t think they’ll waive him quite yet.

    Nygard is close so another spot will need to be opened for him (if there are no more injuries).

    Will be nice to get some players off of IR and get a bit of cap space accumulating.

  46. BONE207 says:

    Like the maid coming into a room where there was an all night shaker. Garbage bags ripped open by the crows & KFC chicken bones strewn about. There’s a bullet hole in the TV & blood stains on the rug. Somebody crapped in the sink & broken bottles in the tub. Underneath the blankets & sheets there’s a body but it’s hard to know whether it’s alive.

    The rantings & insults hurled by Lowetidians lately over these losses by the Oilers are over the top. We all thought this season was going to hurt but it hasn’t been a whole lot of pain just yet. If the team crumbles in the next few weeks, Black Friday might be more like the one in 1933 rather than the shopping holiday it has become.

    I only saw the 3rd last night while having supper. Some questionable coaching decisions with some poor playing by those decisions made for a game which this Oilers team is not capable of competing in against a tired team that was ready to block shots with faces.

    The cold outside may have come in time to usher in some long winter nights with the team in Orange. I hope some injury returnees bring their hard hats & some goals.

  47. Pouzar says:

    Missed the game day thread. I wonder if the same venom was directed towards Klefbom as was towards Nurse yesterday. I highly doubt it. Two 2 on 1s. Not a good day at the office for Dreamy.

  48. russ99 says:

    IMO, we’re ahead of the curve still.

    The bottom 9 NHL level slug it out is progressing and there seems to be some clarity on who can cut it and who can’t, with moves to come to clear out those who can’t.

    The team is buying in to Tippett’s systems, playing a good team game, harder to play against, with improved goalie play to go with it.

    Connor and Leon are supplying the majority of the offense as expected. Would like to see a few more contributors, though.

    The players on the farm are progressing.

    We’re a few months closer to getting out of cap hell this summer.

    Our surprising record is a bonus.

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