GDB 10.0: DUBNYK NEEDS TO DOMINATE

Jason Gregor
October 22 2013 12:06PM

Devan Dubnyk is going to have to roll up his sleeves, put on his gloves and pads, get an extra hard hat and hope he did a lot of squats in the off-season, because he might have to carry the Oilers for awhile.

Taylor Hall's MRI came back and the good news is that he's only out four weeks, not six months, but the bad news is that he could be out up to four weeks. Ryan Smyth injured his groin and is out at least a week. Sam Gagner is still recovering from a broken jaw and Jordan Eberle will play, but he aggravated a hip injury in Ottawa and isn't 100%.

Dubnyk faced 76 shots the past two games, and he only allowed four goals. He'll need to continue his strong play to give the Oilers any chance of getting back to .500.

While Dubnyk will try and hold down the fort defensively, Nail Yakupov has a great opportunity to step up offensively. Jordan Eberle has been the Oilers best forward recently, and Yakupov will skate with Eberle and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tonight and likely for the next month.

This will be Yakupov's third consecutive game playing with Nugent-Hopkins, and it is time for him to produce. Yakupov's role on the team is to score. It's the hardest job, but if he isn't producing he isn't helping the team win. I suspect once he scores his goals his confidence will increase rapidly, and he could go on a scoring binge. The Oilers need that to happen sooner than later.

LINEUP

Yakupov-RNH-Eberle
Perron-Arcobello-Hemsky
Jones-Gordon-Pitlick
Gazdic-Acton-Eager

Smid-Petry
Belov-J.Schultz
N.Schultz-Ference

Dubnyk

Tyler Pitlick will play his first NHL game tonight, and according to Todd Nelson Pitlick has played well in OKC this year. With Smyth and Hall injured he has a great chance to give the Oilers what they are missing in their top-nine; a winger who has some skill, will forecheck, can cycle the puck and play aggressive. He's waited three years for this opportunity, so hopefully he makes the most of it.

Ben Eager will play his first NHL game since March 8th. This is Eager's last chance with the Oilers. He should have lots to prove. Eager skates better and is bigger than Mike Brown, who was traded to San Jose last night for a 4th round pick, but he'll need to cycle the puck better to be an upgrade on Brown. That isn't saying much, since Brown sucked at it, but if Eager can't stay out of his own end he isn't an upgrade. Eager needs to play with conviction every shift.

The Canadiens are just as banged up as the Oilers. Max Pacioretty, Daniel Briere, Brandon Prust, George Parros, Alexei Yemelin, Douglas Murray and Davis Drewiske are all injured.

They will go with this lineup tonight:

Galchenyuk-Eller-Gallagher
Bournival-Plekanec-Gionta
Moen-Desharnais-Bourque
Holland-White-Blunden

Markov-Subban
Gorges-Diaz
Beaulieau-Bouillion

Price

Prust is a big loss for the Canadiens. He and Travis Moen dominated the Oilers in Edmonton a few weeks ago, and he brings a lot of energy to their bottom six. Lethbridge product Patrick Holland will make his NHL debut tonight, while Mike Blunden plays his first game with the Habs.

The Eller line has produced 21 points in 8 games, while P.K Subban has 2 goals and 10 points in 8 games.

The entire Oilers defence has 2 goals and 11 points in 9 games. Subban is a bonafide #1 D-man.

MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL...

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers win when you least expect it, and they will continue that tonight with a 3-2 victory.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Eager and the fourth line will struggle getting the puck out in the 2nd period, and the comment sections will explode with calls for the return of Linus Omark.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Early in the 3rd period, Wil Acton scores and Eager gets an assist. This time the comment section explodes with barbs tossed at those who doubted the 4th line. None of the posts claim the 4th line is consistently productive; they just want to rip on those who wanted Omark recalled instead. Get ready for just another night in the rollercoaster season of the Edmonton Oilers.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR 

Ddf3e2ba09069c465299f3c416e43eae
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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#1 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 12:09PM
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OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:An Oiler gets injured.Likely a shoulder injury.

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#2 Reg Dunlop
October 22 2013, 12:15PM
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Close game. Both squads are hurting. Oil in a shoot out, 3-2. That is why we employ so many small guys that are +/- useless in a hard-hitting, close checking game; shoot out specialists. Good luck to Pitlick, may it be the first of many.

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#3 brian_d
October 22 2013, 12:20PM
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Excited to see the Yak/RNH/Ebs trio work together again. They've been clicking so far. If Dubnyk doesn't let in any softies, we have a good shot at winning this game.

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#4 DOUG WAIT!
October 22 2013, 12:24PM
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I want a Golie and I am drunk, so get a Golie

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#5 Danger Pay
October 22 2013, 12:24PM
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Let's look on the bright side. Oil Change has started up again and we get to re-live this horrible start to the season all over again. Why Hockey Gods? Why art thou so cruel towards Oilers fans? Why? (starts weeping uncontrollably)

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#6 Craig1981
October 22 2013, 12:28PM
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Gregor, I have been trying to figure out LTIR. From what I understand it only allows them to go over the cap temporarily, but Gagner's hit(if he was to be placed on it) would count fully by the end of the year. Meaning if you used the LTIR to go over the first half by $1,000,000 you would need to play the second half 1 million under. Am I correct and that is why Gagner hasn't been placed on it? Its a tool mainly used at the end of the year?

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#7 vetinari
October 22 2013, 12:32PM
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@Gregor-- now I'm just hurt. Are you suggesting that we are likely to turn on each other like a pack of rabid dogs in the comments section? I prefer to think that our similarities outweigh our differences and that Oiler Nation is united by these core concepts--

1. we all hate the Calgary Flames. No exceptions. Sure, you can admire players like Iginla but you don't dare mention it out loud until he's no longer a Flame.

2. never read the full posts by NewAgeSystem, Wronger, Anonymous or any of the other guys that need more than 250 words to say something that can be said in 10 words or less. Just log your "trash" vote and skip on to the next comment.

3. it's been a long walk in the desert to reach the promise land of the playoffs and hopefully it's on the near horizon. Tambellini, Quinn, Renney, Krueger, and a host of players couldn't find the way but maybe someone finally has a compass. Otherwise, all this purging has been for nothing.

4. Again, we all hate the Flames. This bears repeating. They are like Canuck fans but without the riots. Or the granola. Or the green men. And they play in an arena that is shaped like something that would normally cradle my junk.

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#8 RJ
October 22 2013, 12:50PM
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Yak's intermission interview:

"I score 2 goals, so is good. I want coach happy first line minutes play hard and win games"

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#9 916oiler
October 22 2013, 12:50PM
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Deep breaths, patience, beer. Beer. Beer. Beer. Beer. Beer.

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#10 **
October 22 2013, 12:52PM
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Pitlick will score his first.

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#11 Slats
October 22 2013, 12:56PM
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vetinari wrote:

@Gregor-- now I'm just hurt. Are you suggesting that we are likely to turn on each other like a pack of rabid dogs in the comments section? I prefer to think that our similarities outweigh our differences and that Oiler Nation is united by these core concepts--

1. we all hate the Calgary Flames. No exceptions. Sure, you can admire players like Iginla but you don't dare mention it out loud until he's no longer a Flame.

2. never read the full posts by NewAgeSystem, Wronger, Anonymous or any of the other guys that need more than 250 words to say something that can be said in 10 words or less. Just log your "trash" vote and skip on to the next comment.

3. it's been a long walk in the desert to reach the promise land of the playoffs and hopefully it's on the near horizon. Tambellini, Quinn, Renney, Krueger, and a host of players couldn't find the way but maybe someone finally has a compass. Otherwise, all this purging has been for nothing.

4. Again, we all hate the Flames. This bears repeating. They are like Canuck fans but without the riots. Or the granola. Or the green men. And they play in an arena that is shaped like something that would normally cradle my junk.

you also forgot

5. trying to decipher the statistical logic or correlation to DSF's posts (usually there isn't a correlation to the statement) before immediately going to the Trash Accelerator

TA - I notice that no matter how fast I read the post trash # for DSF goes up in multiples of 5

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#12 Mikey
October 22 2013, 01:01PM
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vetinari wrote:

@Gregor-- now I'm just hurt. Are you suggesting that we are likely to turn on each other like a pack of rabid dogs in the comments section? I prefer to think that our similarities outweigh our differences and that Oiler Nation is united by these core concepts--

1. we all hate the Calgary Flames. No exceptions. Sure, you can admire players like Iginla but you don't dare mention it out loud until he's no longer a Flame.

2. never read the full posts by NewAgeSystem, Wronger, Anonymous or any of the other guys that need more than 250 words to say something that can be said in 10 words or less. Just log your "trash" vote and skip on to the next comment.

3. it's been a long walk in the desert to reach the promise land of the playoffs and hopefully it's on the near horizon. Tambellini, Quinn, Renney, Krueger, and a host of players couldn't find the way but maybe someone finally has a compass. Otherwise, all this purging has been for nothing.

4. Again, we all hate the Flames. This bears repeating. They are like Canuck fans but without the riots. Or the granola. Or the green men. And they play in an arena that is shaped like something that would normally cradle my junk.

I think MacT brought a compas, lets just hope he knows how to read it.

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#13 Mullet Man
October 22 2013, 01:05PM
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Hey Yakupov no pressure to start scoring but I think there is a goalie in Phoenix that is out scoring you.

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#14 DSF
October 22 2013, 01:21PM
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Mullet Man wrote:

Hey Yakupov no pressure to start scoring but I think there is a goalie in Phoenix that is out scoring you.

Not to mention 123 NHL DEFENSEMEN.

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#15 Zamboni Driver
October 22 2013, 01:40PM
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@DSF

Goalie line was better. Shoulda left it.

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#16 loweblows
October 22 2013, 02:05PM
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game day prediction: team rallies around loss of taylor hall and pull a out a 5-1 win-go to bed happy-GO OILERS!

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#17 Cynic
October 22 2013, 02:19PM
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Obvious game day prediction: Another L

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#18 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 02:22PM
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Simply put, win or lose, there won't be much to be satisfied with unless it's 10-0 and Price says 'I'm done!' To Habs management.

Hope is a beautiful/heartbreaking thing. Cool-Aid anyone! I brought rum too.

Go Oil. Burn in hell, all opponents. I hope the Oilers start transporting the players in cages and release them only to go on the ice. Feed them blood. This team needs to get mean. We've got enough Ned Braidens.

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#19 Bubba
October 22 2013, 02:32PM
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@Spydyr

BRING BACK FREAKIN OMARK!!!

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#20 Wigswag
October 22 2013, 02:33PM
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The Perron Arco Hemsky line has a good vibe to it. I predict 3 goals out of them tonight (Arco with 2).

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#21 Bubba
October 22 2013, 02:33PM
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@Ari Gold

OMFG!!! Run for Mayor Dude!!!!!

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#22 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 02:43PM
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@vetinari

There y'all go around acting like Nuck fans aren't the worst in sports. This includes Corinthians fans in São Paulo, Brazil. The clowns in Van aren't even true hockey fans, they started watching at the end of Naslund's career after the team threw Beartuzzi under the bus.

Van is a garbage city, trust me, I live there, part time. I can't wait for hockey fans to be incited by the spoiled anarchist children of hippie granola crunchers drunk on soy-sauce Couvarians to burn down this rat/hipster infested garbage hole.

Kessler is a figureskating pansy, the Sedins are soft lil toddler punching-bags and Bieksa is a couple switchblade marks away from looking like the Joker, someone beat that smirk off his face!!

Yes, I hope Cowgary is swallowed by a volcanic eruption but I hope For Van something much worse: I hope that it stays intact, until the west coast happily falls into the Pacific. I hope they go another 40 years with nothing but a Presidents trophy or two to inflate their oversized left-coast egos. Terrible weather, no outdoor rinks & retard citizens.

Eat $hit Vancouver!

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#23 Serious Gord
October 22 2013, 02:59PM
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Injuries make this very hard to predict. Mtl wins 5-3.

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#24 Mac962
October 22 2013, 03:02PM
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Ari Gold wrote:

There y'all go around acting like Nuck fans aren't the worst in sports. This includes Corinthians fans in São Paulo, Brazil. The clowns in Van aren't even true hockey fans, they started watching at the end of Naslund's career after the team threw Beartuzzi under the bus.

Van is a garbage city, trust me, I live there, part time. I can't wait for hockey fans to be incited by the spoiled anarchist children of hippie granola crunchers drunk on soy-sauce Couvarians to burn down this rat/hipster infested garbage hole.

Kessler is a figureskating pansy, the Sedins are soft lil toddler punching-bags and Bieksa is a couple switchblade marks away from looking like the Joker, someone beat that smirk off his face!!

Yes, I hope Cowgary is swallowed by a volcanic eruption but I hope For Van something much worse: I hope that it stays intact, until the west coast happily falls into the Pacific. I hope they go another 40 years with nothing but a Presidents trophy or two to inflate their oversized left-coast egos. Terrible weather, no outdoor rinks & retard citizens.

Eat $hit Vancouver!

LOL - Couldnt stop laughing - Awesome take on Van shiity, i mean city.

anarchist children of Hippie granola crunchers drunk on soy sauce !

lol - That my friend is so true.

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#25 Alsker
October 22 2013, 03:08PM
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@vetinari

#4 made me go look for the Props X 10 button...What it still does not exist...

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#26 Lochenzo
October 22 2013, 03:18PM
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"Oilers are ‘like a junior team, sometimes’: Canadien Lars Eller"

Make Lars Eller can eat his words off of a door mat. WIN!!!!

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#27 tileguy
October 22 2013, 03:40PM
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NSOGDP - after a 5-1 loss nation faithful overload the server to ON waiting on news of that trade that brings Webber to us as reported in the previous blog.

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#28 Sammy
October 22 2013, 03:54PM
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Ari Gold wrote:

There y'all go around acting like Nuck fans aren't the worst in sports. This includes Corinthians fans in São Paulo, Brazil. The clowns in Van aren't even true hockey fans, they started watching at the end of Naslund's career after the team threw Beartuzzi under the bus.

Van is a garbage city, trust me, I live there, part time. I can't wait for hockey fans to be incited by the spoiled anarchist children of hippie granola crunchers drunk on soy-sauce Couvarians to burn down this rat/hipster infested garbage hole.

Kessler is a figureskating pansy, the Sedins are soft lil toddler punching-bags and Bieksa is a couple switchblade marks away from looking like the Joker, someone beat that smirk off his face!!

Yes, I hope Cowgary is swallowed by a volcanic eruption but I hope For Van something much worse: I hope that it stays intact, until the west coast happily falls into the Pacific. I hope they go another 40 years with nothing but a Presidents trophy or two to inflate their oversized left-coast egos. Terrible weather, no outdoor rinks & retard citizens.

Eat $hit Vancouver!

Batman??? Is that you??? Time to up the meds Mr.K ;-)

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#29 Bucknuck
October 22 2013, 04:12PM
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I look forward to seeing the Oil go on a tear. The Canadiens decide to open up the game and Yakupov makes them pay with a hattie.

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#30 Hall's Knee
October 22 2013, 04:17PM
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Gregor predicted an Oiler win=automatic loss

thanks for jinxing it!

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#31 75ers
October 22 2013, 04:21PM
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@Lochenzo

Maybe get Gazdic to give Eller a little blueline hit like Eric Gryba delivered Eller last year. Oh and win.

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#32 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 04:26PM
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Sammy wrote:

Batman??? Is that you??? Time to up the meds Mr.K ;-)

You've got me confused with someone else there champ.

I'm just a humble ex-pat edmontonian living between Brazil & Van that's tired of being shyt on my Couvarians who glorify their mediocre city.

Where are you from?

Originally? Edmonton.

Yuck, you must be happy to be here.

Actually I think Van is ok but it's certainly not the best place on earth. I prefer Montreal, or Rio, or Nice or Barcelona...

Oh, yeah. Well, if you're comparing it to those.... Well, ok.

Van can choke on a testicule sandwich!

It's not psychosis, just pure unadultered hatred. :)

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#33 Rama Lama
October 22 2013, 04:28PM
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I think it's safe to assume Eakins will ride the two top lines until they drop. I predict a win in spite of Eakins.,......RNH to set up Yaks for a sweet two goals.

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#34 Dog Train
October 22 2013, 04:40PM
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My blood boils every time I hear that Ole Ole garbage from Habs fans. I better not hear it tonight. Oilers win 4-1.

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#35 Zarny
October 22 2013, 04:49PM
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2013 is the trial of Devan Dubnyk.

He doesn't just have to prove he's good enough to make the playoffs or that he's a legit #1 G.

He has to prove he can win the Stanley Cup. He has to steal games regardless of who is playing in front of him.

Anything short of that and the Oilers need to upgrade G in the next 1-3 years.

If winning the Stanley Cup is really the goal.

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#36 Bucknuck
October 22 2013, 04:54PM
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Zarny wrote:

2013 is the trial of Devan Dubnyk.

He doesn't just have to prove he's good enough to make the playoffs or that he's a legit #1 G.

He has to prove he can win the Stanley Cup. He has to steal games regardless of who is playing in front of him.

Anything short of that and the Oilers need to upgrade G in the next 1-3 years.

If winning the Stanley Cup is really the goal.

Oh boy did you ever nail it.

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#37 BLAKPOO
October 22 2013, 04:56PM
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@Ari Gold

That just made my day.

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#38 Oasis
October 22 2013, 05:17PM
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Ari Gold wrote:

There y'all go around acting like Nuck fans aren't the worst in sports. This includes Corinthians fans in São Paulo, Brazil. The clowns in Van aren't even true hockey fans, they started watching at the end of Naslund's career after the team threw Beartuzzi under the bus.

Van is a garbage city, trust me, I live there, part time. I can't wait for hockey fans to be incited by the spoiled anarchist children of hippie granola crunchers drunk on soy-sauce Couvarians to burn down this rat/hipster infested garbage hole.

Kessler is a figureskating pansy, the Sedins are soft lil toddler punching-bags and Bieksa is a couple switchblade marks away from looking like the Joker, someone beat that smirk off his face!!

Yes, I hope Cowgary is swallowed by a volcanic eruption but I hope For Van something much worse: I hope that it stays intact, until the west coast happily falls into the Pacific. I hope they go another 40 years with nothing but a Presidents trophy or two to inflate their oversized left-coast egos. Terrible weather, no outdoor rinks & retard citizens.

Eat $hit Vancouver!

I love this post. I lived there for 4 years and couldn't wait to get the hell out of that place. Your comments sound like one of my rants every time I have to watch a Vancouver game.

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#39 Oasis
October 22 2013, 05:20PM
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Dog Train wrote:

My blood boils every time I hear that Ole Ole garbage from Habs fans. I better not hear it tonight. Oilers win 4-1.

I hate that chant so much it's the reason I give away my tickets for all Edmonton/Montreal games. Upon hearing that chant the urge to punch somebody in a red/white/blue jersey is just too overwhelming.

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#40 27Ginge
October 22 2013, 05:24PM
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@Ari Gold

Impressive. I like the subtlety.

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#41 bsab
October 22 2013, 05:25PM
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Spydyr wrote:

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:An Oiler gets injured.Likely a shoulder injury.

Yeah Hemsky is due for that.

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#42 acg5151
October 22 2013, 05:33PM
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Obvious game day prediction: Yeah, the Oilers are pretty much screwed

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#43 Quicksilver ballet
October 22 2013, 05:34PM
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This site is living proof that opposites can live in harmony. The Light, and the Dark side can peacefully co-exist when there's enough duct tape to go around.

signed...QSBs mom.

Take that, Biotches....5-2 Habs!

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#44 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 05:48PM
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Congrats to pitlick. He's one of the prospects I've been keeping tabs on and almost gave up in him. Start of last season I had the kid completely written off. Good luck in you first game!

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#45 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 05:52PM
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I love yak. But that was way too soft on that puck. Dubnyk totally bailed him out

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#46 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 06:12PM
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Pathetic hustle by the fourth line.. Results in a PP and then a goal. Another bloody blue line giveaway ends up in a second goal....Why am I watching this garbage??.

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#47 Naky
October 22 2013, 06:14PM
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This team has fallen apart for the last half of this entire period. They're leaving Dubnyk out to dry here, this is painful to watch.

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#48 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:16PM
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@Ari Gold

And then a giveaway at the blue line results in another goal. Deja vu.

Edit. Never mind. Lol you edited your comment

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#49 Newj
October 22 2013, 06:18PM
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YFC Prez wrote:

I love yak. But that was way too soft on that puck. Dubnyk totally bailed him out

Man he's frustating to watch at times. His feet look like they're stuck in the ice of Siberia.

He can be an effective player but he's got to pull his head out of his * and get involved.

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#50 Reg Dunlop
October 22 2013, 06:18PM
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Eller is a little puke that needs to be tuned but he is right. The oil is no better than a jr. squad.

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