THREE IN FIFTY IS GOOD

Jason Gregor
January 16 2013 10:38AM

 

TSN released their Top-50 NHL player rankings on Monday and Oiler fans should be pretty excited, if you believe these rankings are accurate.

For the 3rd straight season Sidney Crosby topped the rankings, despite playing 22 games last year, mainly due to his ridiculous 1.68 points-per-game ratio during those 22 games.  His teammate, Evgeni Malkin came in 2nd, but the expectations of Oilers' fans for the coming season might be even higher after seeing three Oilers crack the top-50.

Jordan Eberle came in at 25; Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is 48th and Taylor Hall sits 50th. 

The rankings are here, but here is a recap from most to least.

FIVE:
LA Kings: Kopitar (10th), Quick (16th), Doughty (17th), Brown (43rd) and M.Richards (44th).

FOUR:

Pittsburgh: Crosby (1st), Malkin (2nd), Letang (29th), Neal (36th).
Chicago: Toews (6th), Hossa (32nd), Kane (38th) and Keith (49th).
NYR: Lundqvist (15th), Nash (24th), B. Richards (42nd) and Gaborik (45th).

THREE:
Boston: Chara (12th), Seguin (31st), Bergeron (35th).
Edmonton: Eberle (25th), RNH (48th) and Hall (50th)

TWO:
Tampa Bay: Stamkos (4th), St. Louis (30th)
Detroit: Datsyuk (5th), Zetterberg (22nd)
Nashville: Weber (7th), Rinne (27th)
Vancouver: D. Sedin (8th), H. Sedin (9th)
Ottawa: Karlsson (11th), Spezza (23rd)
Minnesota: Parise (13th) Suter (26th) 
Washington: Ovechkin (14th), Backstrom (33rd)
Anaheim: Perry (19th), Getzlaf (34th)
Carolina: E. Staal (21st) and J. Staal (46th)
San Jose: Thornton (40th), Couture (41st)

ONE:
Philadelphia: Giroux (3rd)
New Jersey: Kovalchuk (18th)
NYI: Tavares (20th)
St. Louis: Pietrangelo (28th)
Calgary: Iginla (37th)
Dallas: Jamie Benn (39th)
Toronto: Kessel (47th)

NONE:
Buffalo
Colorado
Columbus
Florida
Montreal
Phoenix
Winnipeg

WHO GOT OVERLOOKED

When a ranking comes out, there is always a great debate over who got overlooked. Here are some guys I felt were right on the cusp or could have been included in the list.

Bobby Ryan: Only seven players have scored at least 30 goals in the last four seasons, and Ryan is one of them. Ovechkin, Kovalchuk, Nash, Iginla and Kessel did it and they are on the list. Ryan has scored 30 or more goals in his first four seasons; he's one of the most consistent goals scorers in the game.

Patrick Marleau: He is the 7th guy with four consecutive 30+ goal seasons. I know many rip him about his playoff performances, but he has 80 points in his last 107 playoff games. He's far from awful.

Teemu Selanne: He has averaged 0.91 points per game over the past four seasons while he was 38-41 years of age. He is an incredible player, and one of the best people in hockey. Until he retires he is in my top-50.

Patrick Sharp: Good hands, excellent two-way player and I'd take his overall game ahead of Marian Hossa. However, he doesn't have the explosiveness of Hossa.

Chris Pronger: If he is healthy he is on that list. He's still one of the best D-men in the game, whether you like him or not.

Niklas Kronwall: He moves the puck very well, isn't afraid to step up and deliver a big hit and he's averaged 40 points over his last four full seasons.

WHO WILL CRACK LIST SOON

The league is full of many young great players and I'd expect a few of these guys to crack the list next year.

Gabriel Landeskog: He's a rugged winger who is Incredibly mature, has good hands and has a solid overall game. Could score 20 in short season.

Evander Kane: Many question his maturity off the ice, but he's dynamic on it and if he continues to progress like he has the past two seasons he could be ranked in the 40-50 range next year.

Kevin Shattenkirk: Young, skilled D-man who likely ends being the centre piece of the Erik Johnson trade. He's put up 43 points in each of his first two seasons, and he and Pietrangelo could be the next Suter/Weber combo in St. Louis.

Oliver Ekman-Larsson: He is one of the most underrated players in the game. He doesn't get a lot of coverage playing in Phoenix, but after playing 25:46 a night during the Coyotes run to the conference finals last year, he proved he can excel when it matters most. He'll be in the top-50 next year.

Who would be on your "up-and-comer" or "overlooked" list?

WRAP UP

Having three players in the top-50 won't guarantee the Oilers a playoff berth, but it illustrates that the Oilers are heading in the right direction.

Phoenix was the only team to make the playoffs without having at least one player on the list, but last year Ray Whitney had 77 points for them, Mike Smith had a break out season and Ekman-Larsson emerged on the blueline. They were some of the best players in the league despite not being ranked.

You need one great player, and usually two or three, to win the Cup, and the Oilers have some of the best young talent in the game. If they can get some solid performances from Devan Dubnyk, Ales Hemsky, Ryan Whitney, Ladislav Smid, Nail Yakupov, Sam Gagner and Shawn Horcoff the Oilers should be right in the middle of a run to the playoffs in early April. 

PARTING SHOTS

  • Today is the final open practice for the Oilers. It starts at 11 a.m. and they will have an extended scrimmage today according to Ralph Krueger.
     
  • Take a moment and send me an email to gregor@theteam1260.com and nominate a coach for our Elite Sportswear Coach of the week. It doesn't matter what sport they coach, team or individual, I just want to hear what makes them a great volunteer coach.They will be interviewed on the show and get lots of great swag from Elite and you will feel great for recognizing their efforts.
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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 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 06:26PM
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DSF wrote:

Actually, a top 10 C a top 10 D and a top 10 G.

Oilers have none of those although Hopkins might get there someday.

hahaha... so you are Jefff... otherwise, how could you speak for him?

at any rate... was Fleury a top 10 G? was Osgood?

considering RNH was 28th in scoring last year for Centres in only 62 games of his rookie season... yea... I'd say he'll get there.

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#103 GVBlackhawk
January 16 2013, 06:28PM
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Bucknuck wrote:

I protest! I am Arch's biggest Gagner ally!

I am a Gagner supporter, too. I think this is an important season for him to really establish himself as an effective two way 2C. If he doesn't do it this year, it is likely curtains for him.

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#104 DSF
January 16 2013, 06:29PM
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cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan wrote:

i am confused, i dont see kyle wellwood anywhere on this list.

Or Sam Wellwood.

Eerie.

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#105 MAC962
January 16 2013, 06:36PM
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RyanCoke wrote:

You brought it up randomly and I see what your point would be to an extent but it doesn't change the fact that Idle No More is getting a message across, it's getting worldwide support and has people who actually will make a difference supporting it. Don't downplay it with the bandwagon jumping a lot of supporters are doing, a lot don't even know the issues they are supporting. The movement is needed and do have influential people backing it for what it is trying to accomplish.

Tough subject.. all is good, i should keep personal feelings off a hockey site.

Peace.

Now lets drop the puck.

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#106 Darrell
January 16 2013, 06:39PM
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DSF wrote:

Or Sam Wellwood.

Eerie.

Quick DSF - pull a stat out of you ass so things get back to normal around here !

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#107 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
January 16 2013, 06:43PM
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Darrell wrote:

Quick DSF - pull a stat out of you ass so things get back to normal around here !

is there a "normal" around here?

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#108 Oilcruzer
January 16 2013, 06:48PM
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The list does have some quirks - like Toews as the 6th best in the NHL? Really? And Kane 38th? Ummmm... No.

The best player is probably Pavel Datsyuk - most complete superstar in the league and he's 5th?

Iggy 13 places ahead of Jordan Staal (who JUST beats out Phil Freaking Kessel)? I know who I would rather have...

But - that's why they make lists. So we can blog about them.

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#109 DSF
January 16 2013, 06:49PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

hahaha... so you are Jefff... otherwise, how could you speak for him?

at any rate... was Fleury a top 10 G? was Osgood?

considering RNH was 28th in scoring last year for Centres in only 62 games of his rookie season... yea... I'd say he'll get there.

No.

You have to remember that both Pittsburgh and Detroit have TWO top 10 centres.

Osgood had a .930 SV% in their last cup winning playoff run. That's elite.

Fleury was .908 in the Penguins last cup win but having two of the top scorers in the league made up for that.

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#110 Quicksilver ballet
January 16 2013, 06:50PM
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Emotions are running high, feathers have been ruffled, panties have been knotted without even being able to enjoy the wedgie.

It's a sure sign hockey season upon us again BIOTCHES!.

Rule no. 1 here on Oilersnation.....never enter here without your can (nards supporter) on, peoples. Page 14 in your Hockey for Dummies handbook.

Darn rookies!

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#111 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 06:53PM
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If this the instigator of one of our good friend's disdain:

http://www.vice.com/en_ca/read/the-edmonton-oilers-are-a-useless-franchise

then... he should take Gregor's advice and relax.

This is just a drunken rant... he could have been much more biting in terms of substance.

His only real insights are that RNH shouldn't have burned a year of his ELC (a judgment call with sound arguments on both sides) and that Eberle's going to slip from his wonder year (he doesn't even mention shooting %)...

both of these things Oiler fans alreay debate ad nauseum... there's no revelation here or even a novel take on a well-worn topic.

all this is... is some fun venting by a nuck fan desperate to sip from the cup.

Sure it's strident... but it's hardly a substantial case against the Oil... and anyone thinking oiler fans aren't the first to rip their own mgt. and team is out to lunch anyway.

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#112 book¡e
January 16 2013, 06:58PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

You are complaining because of an article Thom Drance wrote on a site that isn't related to the Nations?

You are fine to do it, but that makes little sense. If you expect fans of other teams to love the Oilers, you should never read a site that isn't Oiler related. They don't have to love your team and you don't have to love theirs.

Taking it personal allows them to win...

Can you link to the article please. I have an ON habit and if all I need to do to break it is read this article, that would be great! It's like a miricle cure!

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#113 DSF
January 16 2013, 06:59PM
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Toronto trades Matt Lombardi to Phoenix for a 4th round pick.

Clearing cap space for a trade?

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#114 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 07:00PM
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DSF wrote:

No.

You have to remember that both Pittsburgh and Detroit have TWO top 10 centres.

Osgood had a .930 SV% in their last cup winning playoff run. That's elite.

Fleury was .908 in the Penguins last cup win but having two of the top scorers in the league made up for that.

exactly... any goalie can get hot in a short streak. Osgood proved that. So did Roloson for that matter...

or... you can win with just better than or worse than average goaltending.

point being that since so many different kinds of teams have won in so many different ways that these kinds of lists (you need a top 50 C, D and G) are only so helpful

no team is going to be air-tight perfect.

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#115 Quicksilver ballet
January 16 2013, 07:00PM
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Is the rest of training camp (Thurs,Fri and Saturday) open for media and friends?

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#116 DSF
January 16 2013, 07:02PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

exactly... any goalie can get hot in a short streak. Osgood proved that. So did Roloson for that matter...

or... you can win with just better than or worse than average goaltending.

point being that since so many different kinds of teams have won in so many different ways that these kinds of lists (you need a top 50 C, D and G) are only so helpful

no team is going to be air-tight perfect.

Name one cup winner in the last 10 years that didn't have those elements, other than the Carolina Cinderellas.

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#117 The Soup Fascist
January 16 2013, 07:04PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

You are complaining because of an article Thom Drance wrote on a site that isn't related to the Nations?

You are fine to do it, but that makes little sense. If you expect fans of other teams to love the Oilers, you should never read a site that isn't Oiler related. They don't have to love your team and you don't have to love theirs.

Taking it personal allows them to win...

Agree with Gregor, TGNC. If you are worried about the sophmoric drivel of a guy from Vancouver, undoubtedly living in an old refrigerator box in an alley off East Hastings - consider the source. He comes from a city of people that burn down their own town after the loss of a hockey game (you would think after 42 years they would be used to it).

Drance passing himself off as a journalist is like Cam Barker telling people he is actually Shea Weber or Mantei T'eo claiming he has - okay, sorry, HAD - a girlfriend. Sayin' it don't make it so.

Come back TGNC. Come back!!

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#118 book¡e
January 16 2013, 07:12PM
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I am boycotting the use of punctuation at OilersNation because an unammed blogger named wanye wrote an article criticizing wok box chili at the Oodle Noodle Nation page I am also boycotting all noodles - everywhere And china baca use they make noodles and Italy too and Marco Polo.

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#119 DSF
January 16 2013, 07:20PM
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cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan wrote:

i am confused, i dont see kyle wellwood anywhere on this list.

Just noticed Logan Couture, who was drafted after Gagner, is on the list but Sam isn't.

Must be a mistake.

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#120 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 07:20PM
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DSF wrote:

Name one cup winner in the last 10 years that didn't have those elements, other than the Carolina Cinderellas.

other than Carolina...

1) Wings 08. Osgood, an average to better than average .914 goalie, gets hot goes .930

2) Penguins 09. Fleury puts them predictably in jeopardy .908

3) Blackhawks 10. Niemi predictably limps to the finish line .910

there... 3

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#121 Jefff
January 16 2013, 07:27PM
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@Romulus' Apotheosis

These are not just top 50 centers, these are all potential Selke winners.

RNH could become a#1 center but you will still need a two center.

O"Reillly may be that center.

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#122 Time Travelling Sean
January 16 2013, 07:30PM
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DSF wrote:

Just noticed Logan Couture, who was drafted after Gagner, is on the list but Sam isn't.

Must be a mistake.

What does that have to do with Wellwood?

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#123 DSF
January 16 2013, 07:35PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

other than Carolina...

1) Wings 08. Osgood, an average to better than average .914 goalie, gets hot goes .930

2) Penguins 09. Fleury puts them predictably in jeopardy .908

3) Blackhawks 10. Niemi predictably limps to the finish line .910

there... 3

1) 2 top 10 centres and the best defenseman in the world. Osgood hot.

2) The two best centres in the world. Malkin 36P in 24GP. Crosby 31P in 24GP.

3) Top 10 centre, TWO top 10 defensemen

I guess i can agree with you that you might win a cup if you have either two top ten centres and/or two top ten defensemen and have just above average goaltending but I don't think you can win a cup with none of the above.

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#124 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 07:35PM
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Jefff wrote:

These are not just top 50 centers, these are all potential Selke winners.

RNH could become a#1 center but you will still need a two center.

O"Reillly may be that center.

which list... tsns?

too many lists... gets confusing.

at any rate, I'd rather take Couture, since you brought him up.. but not by much (right now... maybe by more later). I'd rather have either him or gags over O'Reilly.

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#125 Mike
January 16 2013, 07:45PM
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I'll agree that Thom Drance's article was complete horse****, over the top and written to not insult but 'hurt' Oiler's fans. I definitely draw a line there, it reminded me of Dan Tencer's pathetic audio blog's that he did a few years back about the Vancouver Canucks after they lost to Boston. I dislike the Canucks as much as anyone but he went too far the same way that terrible article by Thom did. Just my opinion.

That being said, I love Oilersnation!

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#126 DSF
January 16 2013, 07:52PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

which list... tsns?

too many lists... gets confusing.

at any rate, I'd rather take Couture, since you brought him up.. but not by much (right now... maybe by more later). I'd rather have either him or gags over O'Reilly.

Jefff is not me...although he seems to have very firm grasp on what it actually takes to build a winning hockey team.

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#127 dougtheslug
January 16 2013, 07:54PM
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Man, its exhausting reading through the comments -more plot lines than a Mexican soap opera. And I'm just trying to figure out how Travis Zajac's contract is somehow Donald Fehr's fault.

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#128 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 07:55PM
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DSF wrote:

Jefff is not me...although he seems to have very firm grasp on what it actually takes to build a winning hockey team.

good players?

which magic troll did he have to give a handie to to figure that out?

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#129 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 07:56PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

Man, its exhausting reading through the comments -more plot lines than a Mexican soap opera. And I'm just trying to figure out how Travis Zajac's contract is somehow Donald Fehr's fault.

Are you sure it isn't Burke's fault?

I'm not.

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#130 Oilertown
January 16 2013, 07:57PM
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A very digusting article from a very petty and unprofessional writer. You should be ashamed ppl who run this site!!

Oilersnation was started for us and to allow someone like that to write on this site is a disgrace. Wow just wow.

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#131 Oilertown
January 16 2013, 08:04PM
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What a petty petty immature individual.

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#132 Jefff
January 16 2013, 08:14PM
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I do like DSF he is clearly the best poster here.

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#133 dougtheslug
January 16 2013, 08:15PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

Are you sure it isn't Burke's fault?

I'm not.

Either Burke's or Horcoff's. Or Eberle's shooting percentage.

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#134 DSF
January 16 2013, 08:16PM
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Romulus' Apotheosis wrote:

good players?

which magic troll did he have to give a handie to to figure that out?

No.

The right players in the right position.

Accumulating a bunch of scoring wingers while you're weak at centre, on D and in goal won't work.

Never has.

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#135 dougtheslug
January 16 2013, 08:19PM
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Jefff wrote:

I do like DSF he is clearly the best poster here.

Ok,the jig is up. You're DSF or DSF's mom. And I doubt if your mom likes you that much.

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#136 DSF
January 16 2013, 08:22PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

Ok,the jig is up. You're DSF or DSF's mom. And I doubt if your mom likes you that much.

My mom has been dead for years.

And I don't know anyone named Jefff.

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#137 book¡e
January 16 2013, 08:23PM
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Ok, now I get it, Jeff is a mocking imitation of DSF.

As per the Dance article (found it), it is childish (though correct regarding saples's Paulina Gtetzky coverage) but nothing to get too concerned over. Really , it's just a failed attempt at humor.

When does hockey start?

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#138 dougtheslug
January 16 2013, 08:34PM
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book¡e wrote:

Ok, now I get it, Jeff is a mocking imitation of DSF.

As per the Dance article (found it), it is childish (though correct regarding saples's Paulina Gtetzky coverage) but nothing to get too concerned over. Really , it's just a failed attempt at humor.

When does hockey start?

When I lived in London back in the day Millwall Football Club supporters were famous for singing "No one likes us, No one likes us, We don't care" to the tune of Rod Stewart's"Sailing". I don't care that no one like us. I don't want them to like us. It'll feel that much better when we win.

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#139 Matt Henderson
January 16 2013, 08:36PM
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I liked the Drance article. Its the kind of trash talk I've been missing during the lockout. It reminds me of some of the early GDBs here at ON.

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#140 DSF
January 16 2013, 08:38PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

When I lived in London back in the day Millwall Football Club supporters were famous for singing "No one likes us, No one likes us, We don't care" to the tune of Rod Stewart's"Sailing". I don't care that no one like us. I don't want them to like us. It'll feel that much better when we win.

The Canucks are apparently the most hated team in the country.

Everyone seems to think the Oilers are cute.

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#141 Oilertown
January 16 2013, 08:42PM
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DSF wrote:

The Canucks are apparently the most hated team in the country.

Everyone seems to think the Oilers are cute.

I wonder why DSF could it be because they are a bunch of clowns.

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#142 Jefff
January 16 2013, 08:48PM
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@Romulus' Apotheosis

Yeah, and would rather have Toews. It comes down to who is potentially available.

I would like OEL, Pietrangelo or Hedman. But a guy like Adam Larsson may be available. O'Reilly may be available .

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#143 DSF
January 16 2013, 08:52PM
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Oilertown wrote:

I wonder why DSF could it be because they are a bunch of clowns.

Or maybe they are very good.

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#144 dougtheslug
January 16 2013, 08:55PM
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DSF wrote:

The Canucks are apparently the most hated team in the country.

Everyone seems to think the Oilers are cute.

And Canucks fans are notoriously thin-skinned about it. I don't know why they don't revel in it. But as for you, DSF, "You don't like us, You don't like us, You don't like us, We don't care!"

And by the way, sorry about that wisecrack about your Mom. Unnecessary on my part.

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#145 DSF
January 16 2013, 09:01PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

And Canucks fans are notoriously thin-skinned about it. I don't know why they don't revel in it. But as for you, DSF, "You don't like us, You don't like us, You don't like us, We don't care!"

And by the way, sorry about that wisecrack about your Mom. Unnecessary on my part.

I think they're just fine.

No problem.

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#146 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 09:05PM
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Jefff wrote:

Yeah, and would rather have Toews. It comes down to who is potentially available.

I would like OEL, Pietrangelo or Hedman. But a guy like Adam Larsson may be available. O'Reilly may be available .

but that was your point. Couture WAS available and we took Gagner remember...

at any rate, everyone is available it's just a matter of price and ease of access.

as far as O'Reilly is concerned.. I already said, I'd rather keep Gagner.

If I'm looking for another C, I'm not looking at O'Reilly even if he is relatively speaking more available.

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#147 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 09:08PM
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Matt Henderson wrote:

I liked the Drance article. Its the kind of trash talk I've been missing during the lockout. It reminds me of some of the early GDBs here at ON.

I liked it.... so-so...

I love some smack talk...

but he wanders back and forth between trying to just talk smack (which he could have done better if he simply committed himself to it) and trying to actually make an argument (which he never really got off the ground)

at any rate, no one should take it to heart or fret about it... it's all pretty banal.

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#148 geoilersgist
January 16 2013, 09:08PM
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Where does one find this Drance article?

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#149 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 09:11PM
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dougtheslug wrote:

Either Burke's or Horcoff's. Or Eberle's shooting percentage.

Maybe Gagner's size confused Lou and in that weakened bemused state he made a horrible mistake?

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#150 Romulus' Apotheosis
January 16 2013, 09:11PM
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geoilersgist wrote:

Where does one find this Drance article?

http://www.vice.com/en_ca/read/the-edmonton-oilers-are-a-useless-franchise

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