December 26 2011 01:34PM
Ah the ol' Boxing Day Hockey Extravaganza. If there is anything greater than sitting around in your PJs, crushing left over Christmas treats and watching Canada kick off the the World Juniors we can't think of what it is.
What's that? The Oilers play tonight?
That would qualify as greater.
WHICH IS BETTER?
It is difficult to say which game today is more important - Team Canada kicking off the WJC or the Oilers playing the Canucks tonight at 8 PM.
The WJC on the one hand face the crushing pressure of the weight of Canadians annual hopes and dreams. Nothing less than a Gold will be tolerated by couch potatoes from Coast to Coast.
The Oilers on the other hand face the miniscule pressures of a team climbing out of the basement of the NHL, where they have been living and presumably paying rent of some sort these past two years.
If they can keep themselves out of the NHL lottery and shed some underperforming contracts along the way the Trilogy of Hall, Eberle and the NUUUUUUUGE will keep Christmases in the OilersNation merry for years to come.
IF YOU ASK US
We greatly enjoy the World Junior Championships each year. Watching the future NHL stars of tomorrow set aside their differences and come together in the name of Queen and Country is marvelous.
But unless they were all property of the Edmonton Oilers and looking forward to hoisting the Stanley Cup in Edmonton we can't even put them on the same level as the Mighty Oilers. A credit to our fine Nation to be sure but trailing slightly behind in our heart-o-meter.
So Go Team Canada. May you bring home the Gold.
But even more so, go Oilers.
According to the Oilers twitter feed, no lines were run in the practice in Vancouver this morning. Ryan Whitney was absent from practice and Ales Hemsky left the ice early. Both have been since declared out for the game tonight and Khabibulin will get the start.
Jordan Eberle on the other hand presumably put on a clinic of selfless play and hard work the entire practice and declared himself "ready to rock" for tonight's game. Taylor Hall practiced flying into the boards awkwardly at 1000 MPH for the last half of the skate and was pronounced "awesome" by all in attendance.
And we can only imagine that The Nuge clapped delightedly standing on his lil skates and raised his stick in a mighty cheer.