GDB XLIX: West meets sort-of West

Jason Gregor
January 20 2010 02:22PM

What a difference twelve wins makes. The Canucks have 28 wins compared to the Oilers’ 16 and it was apparent in their practices this morning.

The Canucks were joking around, laughing, playing shooting games and having some fun competitions while the Oilers didn’t even have a full squad on the ice. Dustin Penner and Shawn Horcoff didn’t skate and the Oilers skate was very brief this morning.

However, you get the sense that the Oilers will be ready to compete tonight after their worst performance of the season on Monday. Even the Canuck players were talking about how they expect the Oilers to be in a feisty mood tonight.

The Canucks with Ryan Kesler, Shane O’Brien, Kevin Bieksa, Alex Burrows, Rick Rypien and Darcy Hordichuk are feisty most games, but expect more emotion tonight than the past few games we’ve watched at Rexall Place.

This is the fifth meeting of the season between these teams and so far it has been a homer series. The Oilers won at Rexall on October 19th 2-1, while the Canucks have won three straight games at home v. the Oilers by scores of 2-0, 4-1 and 7-3.

The Canucks have been resting after a stellar 6-2 win over the Penguins on Saturday and they are rolling going 6-2-2 in their last ten. Henrik Sedin continues to be the surprise of the NHL leading the league with 67 points. Henrik is averaging 1.39 points per game, while his brother Daniel is averaging 1.3 and has 39 points in 30 games.

The Sedins have killed the Oilers in their career and along with Alex Burrows they are the hottest line in the NHL.

In the last ten games they’ve combined for 44 points. Henrik has four goals and 17 points, Burrows has eleven goals and fourteen points while Daniel has three goals and thirteen points. As a team the Oilers have scored 19 goals in the past ten games while the Sisters and Burrows have potted 18.

That shows how good they’ve been as a line, while also demonstrating how unproductive the Oilers have been as a team.

The good news is that normally at least these two teams put on a good show. The Oilers will be pissed off tonight and the Canucks are always ready to play a chippy game so we should see some fireworks tonight.

Roberto Luongo will start for the Canucks while Devan Dubnyk will get the call for the Oilers. Also Pavel Demitra will play centre tonight for the Canucks on their 2nd line.

Welcome back Comrie

For the first time in over two months Mike Comrie skated with his teammates this morning. Comrie is feeling better and is hoping that he is four or five good practices away from returning to the lineup. The Oilers would welcome him with open arms.

He’s played 16 games, but admitted that in the last four games he probably shouldn’t have played because he had no energy, but he still managed five goals in 16 games which put him on pace for 25. He is excited to get back on the ice and talked about helping the young guys deal with some scoring issues. He mentioned how important is was for him to have Doug Weight, Ryan Smyth and Anson Carter around when he was young and how they gave him some tips to be more offensive.

I think it’s fair to say that Sam Gagner, Andrew Cogliano and Robert Nilsson could benefit from having Comrie’s advice not to mention watching how he is able to score despite his size.

Trade talk is heating up

I mentioned last week how Anaheim and Ottawa have an interest in Ethan Moreau, and that hasn’t changed, although no deal is set in place. But the Oilers have taken more calls and made more calls this week regarding Moreau, Sheldon Souray and Steve Staios. There is some interest out there, and it will be a matter of finding out how serious that interest is.

Staios’ injury might prevent a deal, but he is feeling better and if he can return and play ten games before the Olympic break he could be dealt. Some quiet whispers that once again the Kings might be interested in Souray and maybe even Moreau but right now they are only whispers. It does sound like there is legitimate interest in some of the Oiler veterans.

You’d like to think that that might light get them to play a bit better because Souray and Moreau haven’t played very well for the past ten to fifteen games.

Also, check out what the enemy is saying at CanucksArmy.com .

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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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#101 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 09:52PM
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Crash wrote:

Oh I know, but having the lines the way they are now is an improvement IMO and increases our victory chances going forward....

Well, if the trade rumours have some kind of truth to them then that 3rd line wont be together for too long.

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#102 Eddie Shore
January 20 2010, 09:53PM
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Crash wrote:

The only problem with this is it could kill our drive for one...I'd really like to have Taylor Hall here.

Anyone watch the prospects game? Hall was player of the game for Team Cherry. He looked better than Seguin did, I thought.

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#103 Eddie Shore
January 20 2010, 09:57PM
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Oh and just in case there are any footy fans around, Gunners are on top of the table. It feels good to cheer for a team that is actually good.

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#104 Crash
January 20 2010, 10:01PM
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Eddie Shore wrote:

Anyone watch the prospects game? Hall was player of the game for Team Cherry. He looked better than Seguin did, I thought.

Just a hunch but Hall will clearly distance himself from the rest and be the easy number one pick in June...

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#105 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:12PM
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Smid looked messed up.

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#106 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:20PM
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Weak penalty

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#107 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:23PM
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Well that was horse$hit

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#108 Travis Dakin
January 20 2010, 10:25PM
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YAYA!!!!

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#109 Poo Czar
January 20 2010, 10:33PM
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~Tonights DFF is brought to you by Denis Grebeshkov! Thanks for teaching him how to take an OT penalty Ethan!~

EDIT: Forgot the tildes...

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#110 Crash
January 20 2010, 10:37PM
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Poo Czar wrote:

~Tonights DFF is brought to you by Denis Grebeshkov! Thanks for teaching him how to take an OT penalty Ethan!~

EDIT: Forgot the tildes...

That was a crap call, Grebeshkov never touched him with his stick....the guy just dove..period

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#111 jeanshorts
January 20 2010, 10:38PM
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@Poo Czar

As much as I'm firmly on the DFF bandwagon, that was one of the worst calls I've seen all season. Garbage.

Congrats Canucks, you barely beat the worst team in the West on nothing but powerplay goals.

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#112 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:38PM
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Good game. Oilers prove to be competent, but still lose. Everybody wins...except the Oilers...but then again that's a win anyway.

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#113 Shaun Doe
January 20 2010, 10:41PM
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Crash wrote:

That was a crap call, Grebeshkov never touched him with his stick....the guy just dove..period

Yeah it looked like a can opener at first but when they showed it again he didn't get his stick in Raymonds feet. That should have been a penalty to both teams. I really wanted this one too so that I could listen to David Pratt and the rest of those smug Vancouver Media heads choke on everything they said today. Crushing to say the least. Also I would have prefered that if they were going to lose then do it in regulation but its not like they knew this would happen... did they?

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#114 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:43PM
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@Stop Hammer Time

Troll much?

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#115 jeanshorts
January 20 2010, 10:48PM
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Ssssshhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh.

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#116 Archaeologuy
January 20 2010, 10:50PM
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And Bingofuel saves the day!!

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#117 jeanshorts
January 20 2010, 10:51PM
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Archaeologuy wrote:

And Bingofuel saves the day!!

*wwwwwiiiiiiiinnnnnnnkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk*

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#118 Travis Dakin
January 20 2010, 10:54PM
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jeanshorts wrote:

*wwwwwiiiiiiiinnnnnnnkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk*

By the power of Greyskull!!!!

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#119 Dave
January 20 2010, 11:17PM
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Gotta feel for Dubnyk and the Oil after that loss.

Re trade rumours, I don't understand why the Oilers would be interested in trading either Cogliano or Visnovsky as Dreger stated. IMO Cogs still needs some time and Vis is the Oilers best Dman by far.

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#120 David S
January 20 2010, 11:20PM
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Dave wrote:

Gotta feel for Dubnyk and the Oil after that loss.

Re trade rumours, I don't understand why the Oilers would be interested in trading either Cogliano or Visnovsky as Dreger stated. IMO Cogs still needs some time and Vis is the Oilers best Dman by far.

Cogs is 10 games with decent linemates and some more PP time away from being an impact player. My guess is he's hot trade bait right now. We'd be stupid to get rid of him. Which means...

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#121 David S
January 20 2010, 11:31PM
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Update!

The “Ryan Smyth Deathmarch” Oilers: 2-16-1.

The Current “AHL Goaltending” Oilers: 1-14-2.

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#122 jeanshorts
January 20 2010, 11:35PM
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So I was always in the DD camp as compared to the JDD camp, but I'm a firm believer now. DD for the future!

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#123 Crash
January 20 2010, 11:35PM
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jeanshorts wrote:

So I was always in the DD camp as compared to the JDD camp, but I'm a firm believer now. DD for the future!

I double that sentiment

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#124 fatso
January 21 2010, 12:07AM
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I'm not sure but i think its the laws of attraction or quantum physics but but when you put out strudwick and Horcoff on that 4on3 pk, your going to lose.

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#125 RossCreekNation
January 21 2010, 12:12AM
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jeanshorts wrote:

*wwwwwiiiiiiiinnnnnnnkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk*

Ahh... the superpowers of us immortals. Even when we miss something, our x-ray vision lets us go back in time to read that mess ;-) Good job js.

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