Hemsky dominated tonight's game

Jason Gregor
January 20 2009 10:47PM

It might be permanently, or it might only be for the weekend. Either way Liam Reddox walked out of Rexall Place tonight carrying his hockey bag, so he will going to Springfield to try and help the Falcons win some games.

Reddox and Gilbert Brule should help the Falcons, and they will also stay sharp if they are needed back in Edmonton after the all-star break.

Other tidbits

Zack Stortini is already back skating and is eyeing a possible return next Friday versus the Wild. Stortini’s ability to avoid a serious injury is still amazing to most. He said he is feeling great, and that the torn muscle is healing nicely.

It has been a long time since a player dominated a game for the Oilers the way Hemsky did tonight. He made it look easy.

“No deception whatsoever,” said a stunned Sheldon Souray. “He throws in the odd toe drag to make guys look stupid and that’s it. It’s great to have him on our side. He’s an elite player and his performance has spoken for itself all season. He misses ten games, comes back and totally dominates the games. I’m jealous."

Most adjectives to describe Hemsky ranged from sick, unreal, unbelievable, astonishing and even a joking envy. That was the best game I can remember Hemsky playing. He has had great goals before, but almost every shift he dominated and looked on a completely different level than anyone else.

What makes tonight even more incredible is that he isn’t on the all-star team. Quickly: name the players in the west who can dangle as well as Hemsky. Datsyuk, Kane and that's it off the top of my head. There are other great players, but few who can make it look that easy.

At worst the Oilers will wake up tied for sixth in the west tomorrow morning and I don’t know who will be more stunned them or the fans. The anticipation from fans for the game versus Buffalo will be huge, because tonight Hemsky left everyone from teammates, media and fans waiting to see what his next performance will bring.

Enjoy it fans, you might be witnessing the emergence of true superstar, and a player that will energize Rexall Place in ways it hasn’t seen in a long time. Tonight after he scored the game winning goal, the fans chanted HEM-SKY, HEM-SKY. I can’t recall another game where his name was chanted with such vigor and excitement.

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#51 CurtisS
January 21 2009, 10:45AM
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@ Darcy: Pretty bold to say Vinny isnt top 10 in the world since he is coming off season ending shoulder surgery last year and shouldnt of been playing till Nov. Just in the last couple months we are seeing the real Vinny. He will score 45 to 50 goals again this year. Book it! I would take him on the Canadian team as a #1 Center over Crosby any day of the week.

I think Hemsky can do it now also. After seeing his maturity this year. Its a very big possibility.

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#52 Pokie Reddik
January 21 2009, 11:01AM
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Your all forgetting the biggest problem the Oilers have, Your getting excited for nothing..... Crag MacTavish is still there so it looks like 8thplace again.

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#53 Dennis Castro
January 21 2009, 11:08AM
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CurtisS wrote:

Just in the last couple months we are seeing the real Vinny. He will score 45 to 50 goals again this year. Book it!

And if he doesn't.... He has been scoring a goal at a pace around 1 every 2 games, and currently has 21 goals in 46 games. To get 50 he needs 29 goals in 36 games, so he's not going to get 50, or even 45. He'll finish with 35-40 goals, and you can Book It!!

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#54 CurtisS
January 21 2009, 11:17AM
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@ Dennis Castro: Really Hes got 10 goals in his last 12 games. 5 in his last 5.

45 to 50

Book it.

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#55 Dennis Castro
January 21 2009, 11:35AM
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@ CurtisS: Man you didn't answer my question .... And if he Doesn't? 35-40 Book It

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#56 Bruthah
January 21 2009, 11:41AM
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CurtisS wrote:

Book it.

Dennis Castro wrote:

Book It

What is this 'book' you speak of and who is supposed to do what with it?

*clap clap*

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#57 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 11:45AM
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CurtisS wrote:

@ Darcy: Lets not jump the gun comparing Hemsky to Vinny. Vinny is a proven top 3 player in the world. Hemsky well to reach another tier is yet to be determined. 35 games doesnt make a player top in the world. Remember Cheechoo??

Right.

For starters, Vinny ain't a top-three player in the world; he isn't on the same level sa any of Ovechkin, Malkin or Crosby.

For my money, he isn't a top-ten player either; Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Iginla, Lidstrom, Nash, Alfredsson, and Thornton (among others) rank above him.

As of right now, Hemsky's a better powerplay performer, a comparable offensive performer five-no-five, and a better defensive player.

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#58 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 11:46AM
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Also, if Hemsky is Cheechoo, does that make Horcoff Thornton?

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#59 CurtisS
January 21 2009, 12:19PM
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@ Jonathan Willis:

When was it, last year??? Everyone considered Vinny the best player of the World? Right.

Its all about "what have you done for me now lately"

Vinny is a more complete player than Malkin or Crosby.

Hes not going to be team Canada's #1 center just cause. He was at the last Olympics he will be at the next.

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#60 TV
January 21 2009, 02:39PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

Right. For starters, Vinny ain’t a top-three player in the world; he isn’t on the same level sa any of Ovechkin, Malkin or Crosby. For my money, he isn’t a top-ten player either; Datsyuk, Zetterberg, Iginla, Lidstrom, Nash, Alfredsson, and Thornton (among others) rank above him. As of right now, Hemsky’s a better powerplay performer, a comparable offensive performer five-no-five, and a better defensive player.

I'm in no place to judge anyone's opinion or list of talents, but I do have to ask?

Alfredsson over Vinny..? Really, & why would you make that verdict..?

x6

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#61 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 03:26PM
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CurtisS wrote:

When was it, last year??? Everyone considered Vinny the best player of the World? Right.

Not me.

Its all about “what have you done for me now lately” Vinny is a more complete player than Malkin or Crosby.

Seriously? I mean, have you ever watched either of those two play? I could get into the statistics (which slant heavily, heavily in favour of the latter two) but just watching the game ought to tell you that Crosby and Malkin are a hell of a lot better defensively than Lecavalier.

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#62 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 03:27PM
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TV wrote:

Alfredsson over Vinny..? Really, & why would you make that verdict..?

I wouldn't trade Alfredsson for Vinny, based on age, but right now he's a better player.

Lecavalier has a top-10 offensive game, but he isn't the two-way threat that some people think.

In my books, a top-10 player in the league ought to consistently get it done in both ends. Alfredsson does.

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#63 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 04:18PM
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Also, TV, fun comparison:

Daniel Alfredsson has scored better than 1 point per game in 7 of 12 full seasons.

Vincent Lecavalier has scored better than 1 point per game in 2 of 9 full seasons.

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#64 Jonathan Willis
January 21 2009, 04:25PM
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Also, let's compare Vincent Lecavalier at 19 and 20 (the best of his first four seasons) with those of Crosby, Ovechkin, and Malkin:

19 years old Crosby: 79GP-36G-84A-120PTS Ovechkin: 81GP-52G-54A-106PTS Lecavalier: 80GP-25G-42A-67PTS Malkin: DNP

20 years old Ovechkin: 82GP-46G-46A-92PTS Malkin: 78GP-33G-52A-85PTS Crosby: 53GP-24G-48A-72PTS Lecavalier: 68GP-23G-28A-51PTS

Lecavalier isn't a comparable talent. Even now, he's well back of those three (truly elite) players; at the same age he wouldn't be in the same sentence.

I know that isn't the point you were arguing, Curtis, but Lecavalier simply isn't a comparable player to those three.

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#65 TonyT
January 21 2009, 05:11PM
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Who cares about Vinnie? Hemsky's what we've got and would I trade him straight up for Vinnie? Contract for contract? No. Talent for Talent? Yes, but having the Hemsky that's shown up this year or Vinnie I don't think you can really lose, like Heatley for Hossa. However, the amount of holy **** moments belong to Hemsky. Him and Ovechkin have got to be the most exciting players to watch in this league, because when they are on, they make everyone look stupid.

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#66 Jason Gregor
January 21 2009, 06:38PM
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Jonathan Willis wrote:

19 years old Crosby: 79GP-36G-84A-120PTS Ovechkin: 81GP-52G-54A-106PTS Lecavalier: 80GP-25G-42A-67PTS Malkin: DNP 20 years old Ovechkin: 82GP-46G-46A-92PTS Malkin: 78GP-33G-52A-85PTS Crosby: 53GP-24G-48A-72PTS Lecavalier: 68GP-23G-28A-51PTS Lecavalier isn’t a comparable talent. Even now, he’s well back of those three (truly elite) players; at the same age he wouldn’t be in the same sentence.

Not a fair comparison because the way the game was played when Vinny was a teenager...Game is much more free wheeling...I'm not saying he is better than those three, and also Crosby and Malkin have had each other to play with. How did Vinny had.

As for defensive play as far as top ten go. Did you consider Gretzky or Lemieux to be great two way players? Both of them are considered top five all time!!!

How many games have you watched Vinny play? Just curious because stats don't always tell the story.

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#67 Drago
January 21 2009, 11:09PM
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Jason Gregor

wasn't sure if you were aware or not, but you can get the Brass Bonanza as a ring tone for your Blackberry...go to zedge.net, i was getting some NFL themes and typed in NHL for fun and Brass Bonanza popped up. It's free too, thought you may wanna rock the Bonanza for old times

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#68 Dennis
January 21 2009, 11:49PM
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Gregor's a guy who believes it's easier to kill one kind of penalties rather than the other so I don't really know if it's worth bringing up stats in any argument against him.

Other than that, he's super agreeable:)

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