GDB III: Line shake-ups against the Flames

Jason Gregor
October 08 2009 11:15AM

Even though the Oilers are averaging four goals a game, Pat Quinn has decided to shake up all four of his lines.

Dustin Penner will skate with Shawn Horcoff and Ales Hemsky. Sam Gagner will centre JF Jacques and Patrick O’Sullivan, while Mike Comrie moves to the LW beside Gilbert Brule and Ryan Stone. Andrew Cogliano is back in the middle between Ethan Moreau and Zack Stortini.

And it looks like Jason Strudwick will see his first action alongside Lubomir Visnovsky. Steve Staios is out because of his head and Robert Nilsson will take a seat upstairs.

It's obvious why Penner is up on the first line, but it's a bit surprising that he was moved there to jump-start Horcoff and Hemsky. Those two haven’t been good at all, and hands up how many of you thought Penner would be used as a spark-plug for others.

It's a credit to Penner, because he is in good shape. He isn’t labouring skating up and down the ice, and in fact, he looks just as fresh late in the game as he does early.

Moving Comrie to the wing is a bit of a surprise, considering he is 80% in the draws so far. I wouldn’t be surprised if he takes a few of the draws playing with Brule. Gagner’s play has earned him a promotion and maybe he can somehow help O’Sullivan finish off the great scoring chances he has missed so far this season.

With all the shuffling, Quinn has remained true to his belief that he needs at least one banger on all of his lines.

The Oilers are expecting a more physical game from the Flames tonight. Last Saturday the Oilers were clearly the aggressor, and the Flames will try to match that.

And look for Quinn to match up Horcoff’s line versus Phaneuf and Regehr tonight. Those two have struggled in their own zone so far this year, and while Quinn doesn’t go out of his way to match lines look for him to try and get Hemsky away from Bouwmeester tonight.

Stone leads the Oilers with nine hits, and while he isn’t the best skater, he has been very consistent at finishing all of his checks. He has had two big hits, and landing a big hit is as tough as scoring a goal. If Stone continues to get at least one every two games, he’ll stick on the roster.

Smid has struggled, but I think Grebeshkov has been worse. However, his two points earned him a pass for another game. Quinn wants Nikolai Khabibulin to find his game and expect him to play tonight and Saturday against the Habs. It seems Tom Renney is doing the same with Grebeshkov. His play hasn’t been that much better, but the coaching staff believes his overall game is better than Smid's and they are hoping Grebeshkov finds some consistency soon.

Steve MacIntyre continues to practice as a D-man, and unless the coaches feel they need a super heavyweight in a game, I don’t expect him to get in the line-up soon.

Wayne Fleming worked a lot with Horcoff, Cogliano, Brule and Gagner on draws this morning. Gagner is a woeful 29% so far this year and he needs to improve drastically. Cogliano went against Brule for two different sets of five, and then he went against Stortini. Stortini was strictly trying power moves, and it looked they there were trying to get Cogliano more comfortable against a big centreman in the draw. Considering the Oilers don't have a big middle man, it makes sense to put Stortini in there strictly for the strength factor.

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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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#351 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:33PM
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Great...I just realized the game I'm going to in Vancouver, the Oil played in Cowtown the night b4. Yar!

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#352 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:33PM
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I wish Stone wasn't soooooo slooooooow.

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#353 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:33PM
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Amber McCormick wrote:

Enjoy the rest of the game gentlemen. *You can take your pants off again Jeanshorts*

FINALLY!

*rips his pants off as if he were about to sub into an NBA game*

I'll miss your smell Amber.

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#354 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:35PM
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I know Patty 0 takes lots o shots...is there a record for most shots in a season before scoring?

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#355 SirFozz
October 08 2009, 09:35PM
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Come on hemsky, do something!

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#356 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:37PM
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Whoa, Strudwick lost a foot race??!

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#357 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:38PM
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So, if I'm reading the flow of the game correctly, Quinn's game plan going into the third was to continue to give the puck away, do absolutely nothing in the offensive zone and scramble around and look lost in our own zone. Following it to a tee!

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#358 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:39PM
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Does the Viz look way better this game?

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#359 Librarian Mike
October 08 2009, 09:40PM
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jeanshorts wrote:

So, if I'm reading the flow of the game correctly, Quinn's game plan going into the third was to continue to give the puck away, do absolutely nothing in the offensive zone and scramble around and look lost in our own zone. Following it to a tee!

I'm just waiting for the line juggling to begin...you know what I'm talking about.

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#360 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:40PM
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@Suntory Hanzo

He's pretty much the only Oiler I've noticed out there in the second and the third. Well, other than Hemsky because he's causing me to scream at my tv and pull my hair out.

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#361 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:40PM
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@Suntory Hanzo

He does to my eyes. Much better flow for him.

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#362 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:41PM
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77 & 37 have played well also!!

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#363 Matt Henderson
October 08 2009, 09:41PM
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That's my Star!!!

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#364 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:41PM
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Hemmer!!! FINALLY!!!

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#365 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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I think Hemsky moving upice with JFJ is like heading to a party...someone offers you a Zima, and you think what the hell, it might work. And surprise...it doesn't?

I'm already tired of the commentators making it seem like he is good. Problem is I'm not sure if that last sentence is talking about JFJ or AH.

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#366 Librarian Mike
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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HEMSKY!!!

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#367 VicOiler
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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SirFozz wrote:

Come on hemsky, do something!

Scores!

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#368 VicOiler
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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SirFozz wrote:

Come on hemsky, do something!

Scores!

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#369 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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Thank god you just shut me up Hemsky! FINALLY! WWWHHHOOOOO MORE SCORES!! Solid play by Jacques.

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#370 SirFozz
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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That kid is pumped!!!!!

Oh, and wooooooohoooooo!!!

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#371 Homie
October 08 2009, 09:42PM
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Nice pass by Grebs to set up the shot and great finish by Hemsky!

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#372 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:43PM
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The Cogs-Pens-Bru line has been decent at times. Some good chances.

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#373 SirFozz
October 08 2009, 09:43PM
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@VicOiler

I clearly should have said something earlier.

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#374 David S
October 08 2009, 09:44PM
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I kinda feel bad for Sam. He's got nobody to dish those sweet passes to.

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#375 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:45PM
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@David S

Yeah, he needs a skill partner.

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#376 Matt Henderson
October 08 2009, 09:47PM
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Its time for the Jacques Attacques!

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#377 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:47PM
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Sweet! Back when I lived in Edmonton, 4 of us had season tickets in 92 and 93 (I know..it was lean years and I have the Klima jersey to prove it) my buddy(also living in Sherwood Park, but was a Bruins fan...he would tuck his jersey into his acidwash jeans) would always trashtalk an oiler...and within a minute or two, that player would score.

Anyone else fastforward a recorded game or change the channel for a few to change the luck?? I knew you did.

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#378 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:48PM
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nice timing, mongoloid.

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#379 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:48PM
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Take that Flames! Can't even stay onside. HA!

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#380 SirFozz
October 08 2009, 09:50PM
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Jump!

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#381 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:50PM
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man Jeans...is your feed 10 seconds quicker?

online or channel 312?

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#382 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:51PM
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Nothing pumps me up more than a little Trooper!

Except probably every other song.

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#383 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:52PM
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Look at Hemsky steam roll Jbo!!!

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#384 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:52PM
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awesome!

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#385 Matt Henderson
October 08 2009, 09:53PM
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Brent Sutter looks like he could fly if a strong enough wind hit those wings he calls ears.

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#386 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:53PM
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@Suntory Hanzo

Well, I'm using a satellite box that still thinks it's in Alberta, so I can get Sportsnet West. Maybe that's it? Or the fact that I have the ability to jump 10 seconds into the future.

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#387 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:54PM
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NNNNOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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#388 RossCreekNation
October 08 2009, 09:54PM
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WOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO

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#389 Librarian Mike
October 08 2009, 09:54PM
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oh come ON!

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#390 SirFozz
October 08 2009, 09:55PM
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Gotta be f#cking kidding me

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#391 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:55PM
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GOD NO! NOOO! NOT TODAY!

What the hell man. Frig. Another deflection. My god man.

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#392 OiIersninja
October 08 2009, 09:55PM
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fooook me

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#393 Librarian Mike
October 08 2009, 09:55PM
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Nice catch, Gilbert. Jeez

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#394 jeanshorts
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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The good thing is that Louie DeBrusk is wrong about what happened on the ice 300 percent of the time. I like the odds of it being called back!

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#395 Suntory Hanzo
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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please please please!!!!!!!!

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#396 pissed right off
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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wow.... words don't describe.....

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#397 Matt Henderson
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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*crosses fingers and holds breath*

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#398 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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Call it back!!

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#399 OiIersninja
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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cross your fingers

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#400 freeze
October 08 2009, 09:56PM
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BAH!!

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