GDB XXXVII: A Festivus for the rest of us

Jason Gregor
December 23 2009 11:15AM

Today marks one of the most popular pop-culture days of the year. And, oh yeah, the Oilers are playing the Wild tonight.

If you don’t know what today is, then you weren’t a fan of the greatest TV show of all time.

 

Festivus is a secular holiday celebrated on December 23rd. The holiday, as portrayed in Seinfeld and now celebrated by many, includes practices such as the "Airing of Grievances", in which each person tells everyone else all the ways they have disappointed him or her over the past year. After the meal the "Feats of Strength" are performed, involving wrestling the head of the household to the floor, with the holiday ending only if the head of the household is actually pinned down.

 

So it is fitting that the Oilers play today, because I’m guessing many fans of the Copper and Blue have some grievances today. Feel free to share with the group; it can be refreshingly therapeutic for your well-being.

If the Oilers celebrated Festivus, I don’t know if the holiday would ever end because I don’t see anyone who could pin Pat Quinn.

Quinn has aired his grievances after pretty much every game this year, and if the Oilers play as badly tonight as they did v. the Blues on Monday, Quinn might have his most entertaining post-game presser of the season.

Quinn will change his lines again tonight looking for that magic elixir that will produce offence, but somehow play solid defensively.

Penner — Potulny — Brule

Jacques — Horcoff — O’Sullivan

Moreau — Gagner — Cogliano

Nilsson — Stortini — Stone

He's going back to the lines that won five games in a row, except he has switched Potulny and Gagner.

No offence?

Offence isn’t the problem with the Oilers. They are fifth in five-on-five scoring with 75 goals. Only Toronto (76), Pittsburgh (77), San Jose (78) and Washington (86) score more five-on-five. Look at the superstars that Wash, Pit and San Jose trot out, yet the Oilers are keeping pace at even strength scoring.

Memo to Oiler fans: Offence ISN’T the problem. It's their defensive coverage and neutral zone turnovers that is killing this team.

Getting defensive

They’ve given up 79 goals, 3rd most in the league, only Carolina (82) and Columbus (85) have given up more five-on-five. When you look at this number you understand why Quinn is breathing fire after most games, because the Oilers continue to make horrendous decisions with the puck and by covering the wrong man.

The Oilers forwards need to learn how to play away from the puck and how to defend in their own zone, otherwise this team is going no where but down. And I know Oiler fans are dreaming of Taylor Hall, but he isn’t anymore defensively responsible than Gagner, Cogliano, Nilsson, O’Sullivan or any of the other perceived offensive players.

It is becoming painfully obvious that the only way the Oilers will improve is if their offensive players understand that they need to play well in both ends of the rink.

If the Oilers win tonight, feel free to yell, "IT'S A FESTIVUS MIRACLE..."

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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 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 01:03PM
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airing of the grievences!!!!

I got alot of problems with you Oilers, Starting with you Kevin Lowe!

And you the rest of the team who doesnt try learn form penner and big sexy (souray)

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#52 Petr's Jofa
December 23 2009, 01:09PM
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I have 2 grievences:

1 - Wanye first allowed then reneged on allowing me Tambellini as my pick for Oilers' 2009-10 goat. Clearly Tamebellini was the correct choice.

2 - The Carolina Hurricanes. It's not even the half way point in the season and they've got a 10 point lead.

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#53 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 01:10PM
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Who do the canes have a ten point lead on?

they have only 9 wins lol

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#54 Ogden Brother Jr. - Team Strudwick for coach
December 23 2009, 01:14PM
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@Gregors dirty 'stash

Well it would be 8 points for last overall.

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#55 Ribs
December 23 2009, 01:15PM
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Best of luck with to you for your wrestling match with Kevin Lowe later tonight, Gregor. Will the mayhem be broadcast anywhere?

PS: You might not want to let him get you into a corner.

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#56 Petr's Jofa
December 23 2009, 01:16PM
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@Gregors dirty 'stash

They have a 10 point lead on the Edmonton Oilers.

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#57 Smokin' Ray
December 23 2009, 01:21PM
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GSC wrote:

And now for the airing of my grievance:

Kevin Lowe, the team that you assembled STINKS!

I second that.

-Need New Captain-

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#58 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 01:25PM
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Edmonton has 34 points and 'canes have 24

Look sat the standings maybe, the canes are dead last

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#59 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 01:32PM
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Gregors dirty 'stash wrote:

Edmonton has 34 points and 'canes have 24

Look sat the standings maybe, the canes are dead last

They have a 10 point lead towards Taylor Hall.

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#60 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 23 2009, 01:32PM
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Gregors dirty 'stash wrote:

Edmonton has 34 points and 'canes have 24

Look sat the standings maybe, the canes are dead last

If we're talking about the race for last place, giving the Oil good drafting position for 2010/2011, then the Canes are in the lead.

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#61 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 01:32PM
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@Jason Gregor

Jason in your opinion, do you think that there is much motivation for the Oilers managementto make this team a better club as they sell out so much of their games and have great attendance make great revenue off ticket sales, merchandise, and PPV games?

This is aside from all the bogus contracts and injuries.

Thanks!

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#62 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 01:33PM
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Oh okay sorry guys I didnt realzie you were talking abotu the race for Taylor Hall, I read the blog psots incorrectly. My Bad!

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#63 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
December 23 2009, 01:36PM
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SirFozz wrote:

They have a 10 point lead towards Taylor Hall.

it is a lottery anyways.

they have a lead for the best chance at getting the #1 pick.

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#64 Milli
December 23 2009, 01:39PM
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Instead of grievences, I'm gonna list the players I miss the most. Starting with Stoll, the future captain, Ryan Smyth, I said I wouldn't do this, but goddamn did he compete. Roli, ya, I'd give him his 2 year deal. Reasoner, that guy we let go to Calgary that actually turned out to be pretty good. Huh, yet we still got to keep Klo, hope he does a better job putting together the Olympic team........

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#65 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 01:40PM
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@cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan

I am aware of that.

"They have a 10 point lead towards the best chance of drafting Taylor Hall."

Fixed.

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#66 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
December 23 2009, 01:46PM
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SirFozz wrote:

I am aware of that.

"They have a 10 point lead towards the best chance of drafting Taylor Hall."

Fixed.

~dont let it happen again~

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#67 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 01:49PM
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@cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan

*hangs head*

yes sir...

*mumbles negative things about cable guys in general*

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#68 rindog
December 23 2009, 01:51PM
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Milli wrote:

Instead of grievences, I'm gonna list the players I miss the most. Starting with Stoll, the future captain, Ryan Smyth, I said I wouldn't do this, but goddamn did he compete. Roli, ya, I'd give him his 2 year deal. Reasoner, that guy we let go to Calgary that actually turned out to be pretty good. Huh, yet we still got to keep Klo, hope he does a better job putting together the Olympic team........

Smyth is making $6.25 million/year. Stoll makes $3.6 million/year. Glencross has 16 points (same as POS)

Do we really miss them? And at what cost?

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#69 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 23 2009, 01:58PM
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rindog wrote:

Smyth is making $6.25 million/year. Stoll makes $3.6 million/year. Glencross has 16 points (same as POS)

Do we really miss them? And at what cost?

They didn't bring Glencross in as solution to their lack-of-sniper problem. I'd be willing to give him a break for only having 16 points so far this year.

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#70 RossCreekNation
December 23 2009, 02:04PM
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Glencross has 16 points for 1.2 as opposed to O'Sullivan's 2.95?

I don't think there is any reason to compare these two.

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#71 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 02:09PM
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@RossCreekNation

Ya...well...you see POS has...ummm...what I'm saying is that POS can.....errrrr....damn, there really is no defending this guy. Booooooo.

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#72 RossCreekNation
December 23 2009, 02:16PM
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@SirFozz

Hey, I picked him as a star for the Oil.

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#73 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 02:17PM
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@RossCreekNation

Me too.

*sigh*

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#74 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 02:21PM
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@SirFozz

Dont complain abous picking POS I picked Comrie...

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#75 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 02:24PM
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Gregors dirty 'stash wrote:

Dont complain abous picking POS I picked Comrie...

I took him in the nation drafts pool.

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#76 BarryS
December 23 2009, 02:26PM
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I fear the Oilers have the same problem in lotteries I do, the more chances to win, the harder to accept when none of them come in the money.

Call me a defeatest, don't see any reason to believe they will do any better in the lottery with more chances.

If I remember right, its bottom five get lottery picks. Anybody any good who looks to go number 5?

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#77 Crash
December 23 2009, 02:34PM
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BarryS wrote:

I fear the Oilers have the same problem in lotteries I do, the more chances to win, the harder to accept when none of them come in the money.

Call me a defeatest, don't see any reason to believe they will do any better in the lottery with more chances.

If I remember right, its bottom five get lottery picks. Anybody any good who looks to go number 5?

We are right on the cusp of bottom 2...and we have over a half season to catch Carolina...I say we can do it and thus guarantee a top 2 pick

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#78 Crash
December 23 2009, 02:40PM
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For the record...all non playoff teams are in the lottery with the winner moving up 4 spots in the draft....Finishing last overall means you don't have to actually win the lottery to get the 1st pick.

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#79 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
December 23 2009, 02:40PM
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3-2 Oil.

*dodges beer bottles*

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#80 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 02:54PM
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5-1 for the Wild any takers?

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#81 rindog
December 23 2009, 02:59PM
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Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things wrote:

They didn't bring Glencross in as solution to their lack-of-sniper problem. I'd be willing to give him a break for only having 16 points so far this year.

Everybody and their dog figured that GlenX was the next coming of christ when he we didn't resign him.

He is a decent 3rd liner with the ability to score some goals.

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#82 David S
December 23 2009, 03:16PM
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rindog wrote:

Everybody and their dog figured that GlenX was the next coming of christ when he we didn't resign him.

He is a decent 3rd liner with the ability to score some goals.

Couldn't we use a decent 3rd liner who can score some goals? Of course the NHL experience would be a total bonus on this team. Not to mention that he'd be one less guy Pat Quinn would have to spend too much time teaching the basics of NHL hockey to.

Hey - the Falcons need their team back.

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#83 Curious
December 23 2009, 03:17PM
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5-0 Wild

Minnesota dominates the Oilers at home (one of the longest streaks of winning against a single team) and Backstrom lets in a goal when he plays against the Oilers once every third game.

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#84 rindog
December 23 2009, 03:27PM
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David S wrote:

Couldn't we use a decent 3rd liner who can score some goals? Of course the NHL experience would be a total bonus on this team. Not to mention that he'd be one less guy Pat Quinn would have to spend too much time teaching the basics of NHL hockey to.

Hey - the Falcons need their team back.

Except that he was a rookie when we let him go.

I liked him too, but I don't think that we should use him an example of faultering management decisions.

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#85 Tapdog
December 23 2009, 03:30PM
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@ Gregor, RB

After watching the St louis game and how Horcoff stayed on the perimeter, it looked fairly obvious that he is or will be soon, in need of surgery. Can you explain the reasons why they would keep him in the lineup? The longer they take to fix the wing, it could pull this issue into next season. I appreciate the veteran presence and what he brings to this team but why would they wager further damage? Do you or Robin have more that can be added to the "Why" question? Thanks.

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#86 dunciano
December 23 2009, 03:32PM
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Jacques is a GREAT 4th liner

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#87 dunciano
December 23 2009, 03:36PM
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@Trenton L

Potulny has the potential to be a way better offensive producer than Reasoner or Petersen or Reddox.

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#90 Horcsky
December 23 2009, 03:40PM
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RE: Horcoff

He mentioned in one of the papers today that his shoulder has been coming around and he thinks he will be back to taking faceoffs after xmas.

RE: The wingers in the defensive zone

I would have to agree that the wingers are what kills this team defensively. All players have been guilty of bad turnovers and not picking up the guy in front of the net at one time or another. But, I agree with both of you when you say you see them either past the d-men or too low. They never seem to find the right spot where they can cut off the pass back to the dman and cover him. It's like they either collapse or fly the zone in hopes of a breakaway pass. I wonder if some of Quinn's tirades about them not playing the system is the wingers not doing anything close to what they are supposed to be doing in the D zone.

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#91 Garett
December 23 2009, 03:41PM
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Festivus... Airing of grievances? Isn't that what we have been doing since the end of October? Well... Whatever, I guess if we have a holiday for it, it just makes it funner!

1) Katz: Do what you must! Fire KL. 2) Eat 2 salaries by dropping them to the AHL, If they are claimed by another team, BONUS! 3) Get rid of Assets that can get you prospects/draft picks (Souray or Vish, not both, Hemmer (this summer), Horcoff (hahahaha, LOL, just kidding, not possible) 4) Put Eberle, MPS, Nash, Omark, etc... (All desireable prospects) into the AHL next year (age permitting) and sign some short term contracts with grinders if needed to get to cap floor on the NHL team. 5) Sit back and watch the tank fest for 2-4 years, get a new scouting staff and draft well, draft a goalie every year even if it is later in each draft, most stellar goalies are drafted late as they seem to develop later. 6) Be proud as you have finally realized that the only way to approach elitizm (if that's a word) is by drafting and building your own team bcuz A) no marquis free agent will sign here unless they see team potential, B) can't trade for a star player bcuz they all have NTC's and Edmonton is usually at or near the bottom of their list and C) drafted players can be kept away from UFA for quite a few years which gives you time to build a relationship and in turn maybe see some loyalty from these good draft picks!

Whoa... What just happened, I think I blacked out for a bit...

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#92 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 03:52PM
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A Sh*ticane needs to go through rexall palce and the sh*t barometer needs to have such a high pressure of sh*t inthe air that Oilers head offcie personel implode

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#93 Petr's Jofa
December 23 2009, 03:56PM
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Crash wrote:

For the record...all non playoff teams are in the lottery with the winner moving up 4 spots in the draft....Finishing last overall means you don't have to actually win the lottery to get the 1st pick.

True, and finishing last means you get either Hall or Seguin no matter what happens in the lottery.

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#95 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 04:00PM
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Thanks Jason,

Just something I have observed over that last few seasons here that the fans seem to flock to the games.

Thanks for your thoughts!

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#96 SirFozz
December 23 2009, 04:18PM
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Haha, hey Brownlee, did you just use the term "shaft massage" on Gregor's show?

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#97 Gregors dirty 'stash
December 23 2009, 04:19PM
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@SirFozz

HA HA

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#98 The Real Scuba Steve
December 23 2009, 04:29PM
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Ah Festivus, where miracles can happen to anybody, hopefully a win for the Oilers

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#99 VK63
December 23 2009, 04:34PM
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Airing of Grievance:

The Oiler organization overall on the handling of cogs and gagner and by extension the wasting of their entry level deals. I find it absolutely ridiculous that after 2.5 years of on the job training one sucks so bad defensively its almost beyond description and the other has been humped up the butt so many times its amazing he has any wheels at all.

Is that a grievance?

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#100 Eddie Shore
December 23 2009, 04:34PM
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Team Canada or Oilers... tough decision.

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