Oilers fall to Jets, but positives abound

Jonathan Willis
October 01 2013 11:21PM

The Edmonton Oilers lost their season opener. In the process, they blew a two-goal lead at the halfway point of the game as the Jets tallied three consecutive markers. Despite that, there was as much to like as dislike about their season opener.

Ales Hemsky

Not only did Ales Hemsky score a beautiful goal, but he spent a bunch of time on the penalty kill and had a pretty decent two-way game. Games like this one will go a long way toward putting that unpleasant summer of trade rumours in the past.

Jesse Joensuu

I keep waiting for Joensuu to slow down, but his red-hot preseason performance carried over at least to the first game of the regular season. The thing about Joensuu is he’s a welcome marriage of size and skill. On the latter point, he can skate and handle the puck at speed – two items that haven’t generally been found in the Oilers’ coke Machines. On the former point, not only is he big but he doesn’t back down. He jumped into scrums repeatedly over the course of the evening and went after guys that played his smaller linemates a little too roughly.

Luke Gazdic

The fourth line had a rough night scoring chances-wise, but even so it was hard not to be thrilled for Luke Gazdic. The 24-year-old took an especially hard route to the NHL – being a crash-and-bang type who fights is a tough way to make a living – so his first NHL goal in his first NHL game was great to see (the goal is technically listed as Mike Brown’s at the moment, but watching the replay it seems probable it will be awarded to Gazdic as the puck seems to have been deflected by a Jets’ stick).

Outshooting

There was also a lot to like about how aggressive the Oilers were - particularly in how they won the shots battle. The Oilers out-shot the Jets 24-22 at even-strength despite spending much of the game with the lead (once teams get the lead, they tend to be out-shot). The power play got 13 shots off in just over six minutes of total time, which is a fantastic rate. It won't matter until they get goaltending, but assuming that Devan Dubnyk eventually rebounds to Devan Dubnyk form, these sorts of shot numbers will win the Oilers a bunch of games.

The Other Stuff

  • Devan Dubnyk was flat-out bad. A number of those goals were on him tonight; if the Oilers had gotten even the goaltending Pavelec gave the Jets (and Pavelec is hardly the gold standard) they would have won this game. It's one game; this sort of thing happens. Dubnyk's resume suggests he's a better player than he showed tonight.
  • The first line got out-chanced, and Taylor Hall in particular had more than his share of turnovers. That will happen to offensive players trying to make plays, but it couldn't have been the opening night Hall was hoping for at centre.
  • As always, for both the good and the bad: it's one night. This was our first real look at the rebuilt Oilers; it's going to be fascinating to watch where they go from here.

Recently around the Nation Network

Brian Sutherby explains how to play StreakCred, a Nation-sponsored game with fantastic prizes and straight-forward mechanics that also helps local charities. Here's what the prizes look like right now:

New hockey memorabilia and prizing will be given to the champ each month. The main prize for October will be the coveted Streakcred trophy and the choice of a Ryan Getzlaf, Corey Perry or Jamie Benn autographed jersey along with a pre-paid gift card. Prizes will also be given to the top 20 streaker’s each month, to the person with the most wins and to a couple lucky random draw winners just for playing. Over the course of the season the cupboard of available jerseys and memorabilia will only continue to grow.

Click the link above to check it out, or feel free to check out some of my recent stuff below:

74b7cedc5d8bfbe88cf071309e98d2c3
Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
Avatar
#1 Bicepus Maximus - Huge fan boy!
October 01 2013, 11:26PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
Cheers
30
cheers

Dubnyk: Hot garbage. Maybe he'll get a shutout next game to bring his save percentage up...

Avatar
#2 Dan 1919
October 01 2013, 11:30PM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
38
cheers

Dubnyk let in key weak goals again, at terrible times(never a good time), completely demoralizing the team and sucking out all of their amassed energy.

He has to get a free pass for the first game of the season, but Dubnyk has done this for years now, we need another goalie before this season ends if Dubnyk can't right this ship by XMas (or sooner). What a surprise JESSE JOENSUU is, it seems to be just how he plays too. Hopefully he keeps it up!

Avatar
#3 hallsyoilerforever5
October 01 2013, 11:31PM
Trash it!
12
trashes
Cheers
96
cheers

I really don't understand what makes Smyth so important to slot him in the top 6. He's just awful.

Avatar
#4 Dan 1919
October 01 2013, 11:33PM
Trash it!
15
trashes
Cheers
18
cheers
hallsyoilerforever5 wrote:

I really don't understand what makes Smyth so important to slot him in the top 6. He's just awful.

Haha, he had a weak game too. First game of the season pass will have to be used for him tonight too.

Avatar
#5 oilman3
October 01 2013, 11:33PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
45
cheers

i keep hoping dubnyk can get the job done, but making big saves has to be the norm for a starter without giving up weak goals on a regular basis. that 4th goal may have dipped but he's gotta have that. it was an absolute killer goal to give up. yeah this is just one game, but the schedule isn't going to do us any favors going forward. we needed this one.

Avatar
#6 Oiler63
October 01 2013, 11:36PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
48
cheers

Joensuu is a beauty if he can continue this kind of game.

Nice to see Hemsky once again the player who can carry the game.

Eakins, where's the accountability you've been yapping about when Smyth played 17 minutes and Yak only 14?

Dubnyk will bounce back but he's not an elite goalie that oilers need.

Decent effort by whole 4th line.

Avatar
#7 Walter Sobchak
October 01 2013, 11:40PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
34
cheers

More bad then good I'm a afraid, J.J looked good, like his game tonight, here's hoping he can keep that up.

Coaching staff had a aneurism playing Yakupov 14 min while giving Smyth 19 min.

I'll try and keep this in perspective though, this was the Jets.......... can't possible get worse playing against the likes of the elite balanced teams like the Blues, Kings, Sharks, Hawks and the Nucks.

The Oilers were lucky they had the Jets tonight..........no offence to the Jets fans.

That game could have been ugly had it been a top western conference team.

Avatar
#8 Dan 1919
October 01 2013, 11:46PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
23
cheers

@Walter Sobchak

"That game could have been ugly had it been a top western conference team."

Agreed, that's all I was thinking about midway through the third. Here's to hoping RNH and Gagner have speedy recoveries... because we need them

Avatar
#9 TDSM31
October 01 2013, 11:50PM
Trash it!
35
trashes
Cheers
39
cheers

Here we go again. Dubnyk stinks the joint out and everyone lines up to cut him slack. F*ck that...its time for management to admit their mistake and move on from him.

Avatar
#10 Noelpm
October 01 2013, 11:52PM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
15
cheers

Positives are: PK looked great, getting lots of chance in the first kill. Jesse Jonesuu. The 4th line had an outstanding game and if Gazdic has some more games like this, I can see him staying a roster player all season. Gordon in the dot. Negatives are: Yakupov looked sluggish and lost. Dubynk had a poor game. Turnovers led to at least two of the goals from what I saw.

Overall I'm disappointed with the loss; however, the new personal looked good out there.

Avatar
#11 jeanshorts
October 01 2013, 11:55PM
Trash it!
37
trashes
Cheers
18
cheers

THIS TEAM IS THE WORST EVER OF ALL THE TEAMS!!!

*Saturday night after the Oilers trounce the Canucks*: WHICH AVE SHOULD BE BURN DOWN FIRST IN PREPARATION OF THE CUP PARADE WHYTE OR JASPER???

Hockey is back gang!!

Avatar
#12 Walter Sobchak
October 01 2013, 11:57PM
Trash it!
11
trashes
Cheers
22
cheers
Dan 1919 wrote:

"That game could have been ugly had it been a top western conference team."

Agreed, that's all I was thinking about midway through the third. Here's to hoping RNH and Gagner have speedy recoveries... because we need them

Problem is you have one NHL center, the rest are window dressing.

Hall looked like a LW filling in for a center tonight, brutal game.

The Oilers can't get afford loses in an Olympic year, it will be far to difficult to make up points when RNH and Gagner come back.

I don't put this on the boys, I put it on management for not finding adequate players.

The way the top western conference teams are balanced they would have crushed this AHL team tonight.

Avatar
#13 ShakyDS
October 01 2013, 11:59PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
34
cheers

"The first line got out-chanced" is an understatement. I love Smytty, but it looked like 5x4 too often with him on the ice. Couple that with Hall gifting it to the Jets repeatedly....just plain awful. Everyone will get a first game pass, which is fine because it's early, but it's clear that Mr. Smyth does not have the legs to be a first liner or even top six.

Avatar
#14 TM8Trent
October 02 2013, 12:10AM
Trash it!
18
trashes
Cheers
26
cheers

I'd actually say the Oilers were outcoached. If you see Joensuu looking that good, get him on the ice more. He should have been on the first line....Smyth looked brutal = get him off the ice. The lines were garbage, fix them. If you need my help, here you go:

1. Joenssu, Hall, Yakupov; 2. Perron, Arco, Eberle; 3. Smyth, Gordon, Hemsky; 4. Gazdic, Acton, Smith

You're welcome.

After this one, I actually am concerned Smyth simply can't keep up to the NHL game. If an old guy doesn't start well, it's pretty unlikely he'll finish well. I can't even see him as an effective 3rd liner if he can't keep up.

This loss, though, was on Dubnyk. The Oilers deserved to win and lost because of bad goals. If the goaltending was even, the Oilers win that one.

Avatar
#15 mlcsellil
October 02 2013, 12:19AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

Lots of anticipation and excitement coming into the game tonight. Lots of us disappointed at the result. There were many good things left on the ice and some not so much. As desperately as we need sold centres to help this team out, we also needed Tim Thomas when he was available. Here's to hoping DD can handle the starting job. Looking forward to a great 2013-2014 season.

Avatar
#16 TonyT
October 02 2013, 12:21AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
27
cheers

Good: When Eakins put out the 4th line in the 2nd for an offensive zone draw after the Jets attempted to rough up the Perron. They promptly gave up a scoring chance but message was sent and easily the loudest cheer of the night.

Bad: Smyth and Dubnyk. Dubnyk upped his quota from 1 bad goal a game but will hopefully rebound. Smyth is just old and slow, that's on the coaching staff.

Ugly: The worst part of the last seven years is how the Rexall faithful has been conditioned for the worse. The unwillingness of the fans to get a cheer going, even with a power play late in the game was pretty sad.

Avatar
#17 DonDon
October 02 2013, 12:30AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
14
cheers

As per the Other Stuff:

"The first line got out-chanced, and Taylor Hall in particular had more than his share of turnovers. That will happen to offensive players trying to make plays, but it couldn't have been the opening night Hall was hoping for at centre."

Now that the Oilers are playing for points, the first line is a real mess. Hall playing out of position, Smyth a "non factor". Let's face it, Hall is playing out of his position of strength and Smyth had a bad opening night.

I don't place the blame for the loss on Dubnyk. There was enough blame to go around by the total team.

The deficiency at centre was evident. Some positives: Joensuu and newly arrived Luke Gazdic.

It is only the beginning of the season, but the Jets are considered to be out of the playoffs. Obviously, they have some real talent.

Avatar
#18 Don wrinkles
October 02 2013, 12:50AM
Trash it!
16
trashes
Cheers
21
cheers

SWARM SWARM SWARM

And now 5 goals against... Bright coaching to keep Yakupov on the bench ( he had his physical game on tonight and was good with his puck possession)... I guess Ryan Smyth missing passes and overstaking the puck is Eakins saying "play better, play more"

Oh and bob stuaffer is fat and fugly

Avatar
#19 Andy
October 02 2013, 12:53AM
Trash it!
25
trashes
Cheers
17
cheers

I sure didn't see much of an effort from Ebs tonight. Come to think of it may be a continuation of a rather shabby work ethic at the end of last sesson. He is the one player of the younger group I could part with for the right asset either on D ir at centre. I doubt there would much support for that but I'm thinking he should be given the nickname Casper given his penchant for disappearing in physical games.

Avatar
#20 durb
October 02 2013, 01:14AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
15
cheers

Smyth is done. Sad to watch him anywhere but around the other teams net. He's one of the slowest, weakest players in the league to my eyes. Jonesi is beast is a mans body. Loved his game. Liked Perron. Thought the 4th line was good. If they bump Acton (or anyone for that matter) for Smyth once the team is healthy, for the love of god I will loose all faith in this management/coaches.

Avatar
#21 durb
October 02 2013, 01:16AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
10
cheers

Joensuu was a beast, sorry. Jonesi? what the hell was I thinking

Avatar
#22 Cynic
October 02 2013, 01:27AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

What were their relCorsi's on the night?

Avatar
#23 spliff
October 02 2013, 02:15AM
Trash it!
17
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers

I have a bad feeling that for some reason the Flames are going to own us again this year.

We should have won this game. These are the missed points that will keep us out of the playoffs again. Is is too much to ask from the most loyal and abused fan base in the league, to have a decent team that can be part of some playoff hockey? After watching tonights game, I'd bet my mortgage that the Oilers will not make the playoffs again. Eight years no playoffs. Unf*ckingbelievable!

Avatar
#24 **
October 02 2013, 02:18AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
12
cheers

The game was entertaining and the Oilers dominated for the most part. But then the Jets made them pay for their mistakes. To my eyes this game was on Hall and Dubnyk. To very soft goals Dubnyk let in and two horrible turnovers by Hall that turned into goals. The good thing is that we know these guys are far better than that. AS for the center situation, all 4 guys were 50% or better on the faceoffs, Acton and Arcobello were very active and efficient, plus they got on the scoresheet. It's only one game, but if Taylor Hall was the worst center on the team, things are looking pretty good. The fourth line may have had a rough night in scoring chances, but they scored a goal and were engaged physically, which I think is the job of this line. The third line was doing very good things as well but were more victims of circumstance, and they also scored. Yakupov seems a bit off. The team may have found the answer to their size issues with Gazdic and Joenssu, both can skate, both scored, and both were aggressive and standing up for their teammates. The fourth line should have played more. The ice time handling for Hall is going to be tricky because he is being asked to play a position he is not totally comfortable with, so how much leeway should the coach give him?. I can see some line shuffling in order since the second and third lines failed to produce.

Avatar
#25 **
October 02 2013, 02:31AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers
TM8Trent wrote:

I'd actually say the Oilers were outcoached. If you see Joensuu looking that good, get him on the ice more. He should have been on the first line....Smyth looked brutal = get him off the ice. The lines were garbage, fix them. If you need my help, here you go:

1. Joenssu, Hall, Yakupov; 2. Perron, Arco, Eberle; 3. Smyth, Gordon, Hemsky; 4. Gazdic, Acton, Smith

You're welcome.

After this one, I actually am concerned Smyth simply can't keep up to the NHL game. If an old guy doesn't start well, it's pretty unlikely he'll finish well. I can't even see him as an effective 3rd liner if he can't keep up.

This loss, though, was on Dubnyk. The Oilers deserved to win and lost because of bad goals. If the goaltending was even, the Oilers win that one.

I think you meant Brown on the 4th line, not Smith. I agree some shuffling needs to get done. THe second line didn't produce at all even though Arcobello was creating quite a few chances. I think Perron and Eberle were a little intimidated by the physical play. Dallas admitted in the post conference that one of his mistakes was not to give Joenssu more ice time and another not to give the fourth line more ice time. Ryan Smyth wasn't bad but he wasn't effective either. I would move Perron to the First line because he is a better defensive player and move Joenssu tot he second with Arcobello and Eberle so he can creat some space for those too because they are small. Smyth on the third line with Gordon and Yakupov or Even Gazdik there to see what could happen. I didn't like Petry's play tonight, a little slow and unaware at times. Smid played his solid shutdown role. Ference Belov and Justin Schultz had a few adventures but overall were good and Nick Schultz looks way better on the third pairing than on the first last year.

Avatar
#26 vetinari
October 02 2013, 04:36AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

Only one game but a few things need work.

I get that Eakins wants Hall to have experience on the wings but Smyth needs to either keep up or find a new home on the third line.

Dubnyk needs to be better. Especially on the softies. There were times that he was scrambling or looked like he couldn't find the puck. That being said, he's always been the type of player that needs a bunch of games to get into sync. Broduer he isn't.

Avatar
#27 Quicksilver ballet
October 02 2013, 05:25AM
Trash it!
21
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers

It's unfortunate they had to stick to tradition and waste the last 3 1/2 weeks. Now that all the alsorans are out of the way, give these guys another 3 or 4 weeks working together/get to know each other and they'll be much better. Hopefully these two points don't come back to haunt us. Could've been much worse had Taylor not eluded the two headhunting efforts that probably would've sidelined him for a few weeks.

Avatar
#28 spliff
October 02 2013, 05:38AM
Trash it!
6
trashes
Cheers
13
cheers

I'm reading stuff on this blog like "first game of the season pass" and "he's always been the type of player that needs a bunch of games to get into sync." This is unacceptable for a team like the Oilers, who have missed the playoffs seven years in a row, despite having oodles of talent, and spending to the cap. They needed this win, big time, because of their early schedule and their injury predicament. For the past several years I've grudgingly accepted the "rebuilding"mantra espoused by KLoser and the gang. This year, no more. They have no more excuses. They owe the loyal fans of this franchise, who cough up hard earned cash for league high ticket prices, and have to put up with all the associated BS that comes with a team run by uneducated ex-hockey players, who rely on their glory days as a resume crutch. This loss, for some reason, was much more disappointing then games last year, because it made it obvious that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

Avatar
#29 Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate
October 02 2013, 05:42AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
Cheers
25
cheers

Joensuu looked good.

Hall the turnover machine.

Doobie looked stoned there

Avatar
#30 Ray
October 02 2013, 05:54AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
19
cheers

Same old......jf Jacques was supposed to play on first line too....now smytty.....if I was yak, I'd be pissed!!!!

Avatar
#31 They're $hittie
October 02 2013, 06:43AM
Trash it!
8
trashes
Cheers
11
cheers

Hall back to LW please when one of the two are back.

Ryan Smythe is terrible (I spelled his name with an e Because this is not the old ryan smyth)

Was a believer in Dubnyk, not anymore

Gazdic should have be the crap out of Trouba when he head hunted Hall. We got these guys to be proactive not reactive.

Not ehough ice time for Yak.

Please appreciate what Nuge and Gagner do for this team. We may have been better in shooting differential this game, but it seems like the puck is not on our sticks as much with these two not in the line up.

Avatar
#32 Jakethesnake
October 02 2013, 06:56AM
Trash it!
9
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers

As long as this goalie is here this doesn't turn the corner. His numbers look great but he's not The media keeps telling us how great he is but he still sucks New Goalie Please Yea it's game one but I've said it for over 2 years He's not good enough

Avatar
#33 Cody anderson
October 02 2013, 06:59AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
10
cheers

Smyth better spped up or he will not make it the year. I agree with those of you asking them to try some new lines.

Perron - Hall - Yakupov

Joensuu - Acrobello - Eberle

Smyth - Gordon - Hemsky

Gazdig - Acton - Brown

This puts Hall with elite scorers and makes that a real 3rd line. Perron is used to having some defensive reposibiblity.

Joensuu looks like he can keep up with the top 6 and he is willing to muck it up, protect his teammates and goto the net.

This looks like a 3rd line that can shut down other teams and still be a threat to score. Icetime should be more manageable for father time.

This 4th line looks capable of sending messages, being physical, and annoying the other team. I would like to see at least one upgrade on the line, but the Acton experiment looks good thus far.

Avatar
#34 hemi
October 02 2013, 07:07AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
9
cheers

Game one turned out to be a disappointment. If myself and fellow Oil fans were sipping too much Kool-Aid this preseason, then last night's game served up a different type of drink altogether.

Watching the post game interview of Eakins revealed that the team is far from being where he wants it to be. I liked how he did not throw the players fully under the bus and the fact that he openly admitted that he too made errors in judgement. Even when he was asked to comment on #94, he choose his words with respect to an ICON to both the organization and to the fan base. It does indeed looks like a step or two has been lost for the beloved #94. (Would it be a reasonable presumption that Ryan knows this as well?)

Game one is over and done with. Nothing to do but learn from it and move forward. It's 2 pts that we missed out on. As a team that needs to be in the playoffs this year, every point is important.

Game one may serve as an early wake up call for both player and management or at least one can hope so. Go OIL Go!

Avatar
#35 Bjm
October 02 2013, 07:12AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
13
cheers

Be afraid. Very afraid.

What's Hall really thinking when he looks to his left and sees the loveable but washed up Smyth. What's Yak really thinking when his minutes add less than Smyth's? Did Smyth get more ice time because it takes him so long to get to the bench for a change?

Can't wait yo see what happens when SJ, LA and the like roll into town.

And what was Dubnyk thinking about all night, besides hockey?

Avatar
#36 Darrell
October 02 2013, 07:24AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Lets flash back to last year as we stunk it up in game 1 and then YakCity was born against LA. Swap out Smyth and Yak, post a picture go Sammy's mug in the dressing room and replay game 48 for the boys .....

Avatar
#37 Crondor
October 02 2013, 07:25AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

All I can think of is:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mQgt-2T-C5o

Avatar
#38 Serious Gord
October 02 2013, 07:27AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
6
cheers
Quicksilver ballet wrote:

It's unfortunate they had to stick to tradition and waste the last 3 1/2 weeks. Now that all the alsorans are out of the way, give these guys another 3 or 4 weeks working together/get to know each other and they'll be much better. Hopefully these two points don't come back to haunt us. Could've been much worse had Taylor not eluded the two headhunting efforts that probably would've sidelined him for a few weeks.

Re: hall nearly getting hammered

That was my thought too. Playing center in such a lindros-like reckless fashion is going to end badly for him. Head hunters around the league if they watched the game last night will have seen plenty of chances to flatten him. Unless he changes - which seems doubtful - it's just a matter of time...

And what amount of begging, pleading, rioting etc. is it going to take to get MacT to order Smyth to retire - clearly RS hasn't got the guts or sense to do it on his own accord.

Avatar
#39 NJ
October 02 2013, 07:34AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
7
cheers

I am not willing to go through a season full of losing like this. I'm sick of watching losses and coughed up leads. But, as far as I'm concerned, coach, players, goalie, all get a pass for about 3 or 4 games. Eakins is smart. I trust that. He's made excellent moves so far in interior decorating and attitude. I like the captain pick having seen more of what Ference does and is.

What does that mean? It means that it's not yet time to throw Duby, or Eakins, under the bus. Or Smyth. It's ONE GAME. When he shuts Vancouver out on Saturday or Smitty scores the game winner, what will you say then? Relax. Give the coach a chance. I for one would love to see Ebs and Hall reunited as well as Yak in the top 6. Eakins is the coach, he has more experience than I do (clearly) and while Smitty's offensive game was terrible, he covered for Hall more than once last night.

Unfortunately, my opinion is that Smitty isn't an Oilers roster player. Any player that refuses to upgrade a wooden stick for new technology has issues, and the 4th line looks excellent without him. I hope Eakins sees it soon and we can get some scoring out of all our lines!

Avatar
#40 Bryan in SK
October 02 2013, 07:37AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
2
cheers

I was disappointed with Hall last night. Willing to cut him some slack due to being new at centre, but passes have to be to players on OUR team, and please, stop with the cutesy toe drags. It seldom works in the NHL makes me gag when that ends up in the back of our net.

Pavelec was beatable. Put the @$!#^ puck on the net and see what happens.

Avatar
#41 Hemmercules
October 02 2013, 07:38AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
20
cheers

I hate this notion of players getting a "free pass" on a bad game because it's the first one. Free passes just reinforce that its ok to lose and that story is getting old.

Avatar
#42 Jarko
October 02 2013, 07:38AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
4
cheers

Kinda scraping the bottom of the barrel if Jonesuu and Hemsky are your highlights! Despite all his energy Jonesuu still ended up -2 on the night. Bigger concern is how ordinary Hall and Eberle looked. Yes...it is just one game hand isn't anywhere near the panic button...but I just hope Hall and Ebs aren't waiting for Nuge to come back before they turn it on. Still don't get why the Oilers have not done anything to significantly address their D and Goaltending situation. Dubs has proven repeatedly that he is nothing more than a quality back up. The D still lacks a bonafide 1 or 2 D-Man. Which means all the D-Men are playing up a couple of notches. Yes...one game...but left the rink not seeing much different than I saw last year.

Avatar
#43 Clyde Frog
October 02 2013, 07:51AM
Trash it!
4
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Sigh, there goes the chance at a perfect season :(

Also I'm willing to give them the first 9 to find their legs when missing their top 2 centers AND playing a new system.

But the RNH and Gagner better be quick studies...

Avatar
#44 Fresh Mess
October 02 2013, 07:57AM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Cheers
0
cheers

Weird Al Yakupov did not play very well last night. I don't know why the posters here are hysterical about his playing time.

You can never preach accountability in an organisation that continues to employ The Lord of the Rings as head of hockey operations.

Avatar
#45 UnderOil
October 02 2013, 07:57AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
3
cheers
Cody anderson wrote:

Smyth better spped up or he will not make it the year. I agree with those of you asking them to try some new lines.

Perron - Hall - Yakupov

Joensuu - Acrobello - Eberle

Smyth - Gordon - Hemsky

Gazdig - Acton - Brown

This puts Hall with elite scorers and makes that a real 3rd line. Perron is used to having some defensive reposibiblity.

Joensuu looks like he can keep up with the top 6 and he is willing to muck it up, protect his teammates and goto the net.

This looks like a 3rd line that can shut down other teams and still be a threat to score. Icetime should be more manageable for father time.

This 4th line looks capable of sending messages, being physical, and annoying the other team. I would like to see at least one upgrade on the line, but the Acton experiment looks good thus far.

Cody, I'm not sure I'd pull out the blender yet - but your line combos made me smile (just a bit - still mourning the loss) as there are many ways to put this team together that look good.

I would like to see more of Perron before he gets a pass to the first line and I think if anyone other than Joensuu surprised me last night it was Hemmer. He does not deserve a demote to 3rd.

Avatar
#46 ghostofberanek
October 02 2013, 08:06AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
Cheers
14
cheers

I'm ok with that game. Dubnyk struggled, but he'll be fine. Our new additions looked really good, and they scored 3 out of 4 goals in 30 mins of play. Our power play looks sharp, with room for improvement still. Seems to me that winning the first game of the season hasn't meant much in the past, so why would losing the first game mean much?

I refuse to be like the dumbass fans who prattle on about the sky falling. Even the best teams lose, and the best goalies allow goals. Get over it.

Avatar
#47 j
October 02 2013, 08:09AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers
Hemmercules wrote:

I hate this notion of players getting a "free pass" on a bad game because it's the first one. Free passes just reinforce that its ok to lose and that story is getting old.

I don't believe anyone is getting a free pass. The coaches, players, reporters and fans have all owned up and said they need to be better. The reality however is we have many new players, players playing out of position, some critical players on IR, and a new coach/system. All of these factors would lend to a bit of latitude when evaluating the first few games IMO. I suspect we'll see some adjustments in real time i.e. Smytty/Yak minutes, line shuffling. And, if you look over at Lowetide, the Oilers actually outplayed the Jets by a fairly large margin. There were a few costly turnovers and bad goals that cost us the game. It wasn't a poor showing in many respects.

Avatar
#48 The Oilers Shot Clock
October 02 2013, 08:15AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
1
cheers

I'm scared Smyth is going to be the elephant in the room this year. If that was him with a full tank, then it's over. It's too bad because Yak and JJ on the third looked like they could really feast on weak comp.

Avatar
#49 Lochenzo
October 02 2013, 08:21AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Cheers
5
cheers

A good lesson in being who you are. Smytty was never a possession type player even in his prime. His best work is along the boards and a little chip and chase. He needs to stick with that.

Taylor Hall is not a dominant centre. He won't be able to make things happen like he does at wing, at least not at this time until he learns the position. He's got to keep it simple while he's there.

Doing too much led to turnovers and cost the team. You can't be mad when the problems are a result of trying too hard. Just need to fix it.

Avatar
#50 TKB2677
October 02 2013, 08:23AM
Trash it!
7
trashes
Cheers
8
cheers

WOW Dubnyk. Way to prove all your critics right. In my opinion, 3 out of 5 goals were complete stinkers.

The Little goal was an unscreened, 30 ft wrist shot to the blocker side. I thought the defence did well on it to only give up that shot and Dubnyk lets it in.

The first Frolik goal was a spinning, unscreened, 25ft, short side wrist shot. If I'm the Oilers defence, I give up that shot all day long as it should never go in.

The Trouba goal was a 1 vs 2, unscreened, not overly hard, 45ft slapper. Those are the type of goals that you see a preseason, prospect goalie give up in his 1 and old NHL game before he is sent back to junior.

For all the Dubnyk lovers that rattle off his save percentage and cling to the "every goalie lets in a bad on from time to time" argument. Explain to me how the hell a starting NHL goal lets in 3 in the first game.

He was fighting the puck all night. Couldn't catch the puck, spitting out horrible rebounds. Dubnyk was HORRIBLE last night.

What really backs up the argument is when the head coach in his presser comes out and says at least 2 goals were bad. You know you played bad when your coach doesn't pull out cliché after cliché like usual but instead says you sucked.

I guess the saving grace is Dubnyk "owned it" but who gives a crap. Stop the puck!! I know it's game 1 but if you can't come out in your home opener and play better than that, there is definite calls for concern.

Anyone know how old Ryan Smyth is? His bio says he's 37 but I could of sworn he was 50 out there. Can we please call the experiment with Smyth playing on the wing with Hall over and done with?

Comments are closed for this article.