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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#51 Harlie
October 22 2013, 06:19PM
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Oh boy MacT. This don't look good fella.

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#52 Reg Dunlop
October 22 2013, 06:21PM
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Actually, let me revise that. Jr. hockey teams play with emotion, hustle and chaos. The oil don't often show the emotion and hustle.

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#53 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:22PM
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I hope Perrons compete rubs off on some of these oilers soon. He Hemsky and eberle were the only forwards worth watching that period. Dubnyk bailed out a lot of high quality chances.

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#54 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:22PM
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Edit. I phone double post again

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#55 socaldave
October 22 2013, 06:22PM
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So can we say Dubnyk's no longer anything to worry about? I think so. I counted SIX quality chances for the Habs - Dubnyk of last week lets in probably four of those. I think he's back.

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#56 Naky
October 22 2013, 06:24PM
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Goaltending is the least of this team's problems right now. Dubnyk's been bailing this defensively pathetic team left and right and they can barely even clear the puck out of their own zone in response. Junior team comparison seems about right.

I think what's sick is that I'm still going to have to read comments from people railing on Dubnyk for not stealing another game we don't deserve to win because they just watched the score on Sportsnet instead of watching this debacle.

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#57 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:24PM
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@socaldave

Agreed. Dubnyk is doing his job. That could have been much uglier.

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#58 Mikey
October 22 2013, 06:27PM
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Hana sounds like sportsnet reads the comments here. Dallas is not teaching the oilers to turn over the puck. It's not the coach.

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#59 Harlie
October 22 2013, 06:29PM
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It's not the coach? It's not the goalie? OH HELL YEAH IT IS.

It's them and everyone else on this team and the organization too.

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#60 socaldave
October 22 2013, 06:30PM
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Just someone PLEASE throw a hit. I don't care if they get penalised, suspended, just MAKE SOMEONE IN A RED SWEATER PAY!!!

Ladislav Smid? I'm looking at you, pal.

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#61 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:30PM
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The Oilers look lost in their own end.That has to be on the coach. Swarm my a$$...wait that never came out right.

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#62 steelymac
October 22 2013, 06:31PM
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Is it safe to say Eakins has crushed Yaks confidence?

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#63 Poolanov
October 22 2013, 06:34PM
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The only thing MacT can do to help right now is step behind that bench and teach those boys the ol' 2006 trap.

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#64 Mac962
October 22 2013, 06:35PM
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You know what ? We do look like a lost Junior team out there. There is no, none, zero sense of urgency, has anyone seen a forecheck push yet , some hitting. Man i am a die hard,, this is just so painful. If they dont sign Tootoo to inject some piss and vinegar into this lineup something is wrong. Eller is right.... and it is tearing me to pieces.

Come on Oilers - wake the f--k up.

Yakapov - Galchenyuk ? are you kidding me , Gallagher is better than Yakapov. I am sorry this kid is going to be bust , HE IS NOT what this team needs, we need drive Nail , trust me commrade, you are not that special. Prove me wrong please.

Eakins ? i am biting my lip ....but the teams play is a reflection of you as well. AHL this is not Dallas.

Trash me , i dont care. I am a hurting Oil diehard venting.

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#65 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:37PM
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It's not Eakins. It wasn't Krueger. It wasn't renney. This young oilers team is stubborn and has consistently made the same stupid giveaways. They play like a junior team because they refuse to listen to any coach and tighten up defensively. At this point I don't think Scotty bowman could coach these guys.

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#66 Harlie
October 22 2013, 06:37PM
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Poolanov wrote:

The only thing MacT can do to help right now is step behind that bench and teach those boys the ol' 2006 trap.

Be careful what you wish for...

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#67 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:38PM
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Reg Dunlop wrote:

Eller is a little puke that needs to be tuned but he is right. The oil is no better than a jr. squad.

I agreed Eller is right, too but who is going to tune him in. The Oilers are a bunch of little girls even #20. Proof...Brendan Gallagher, 5'9 and 178 lbs running around the ice laughing at all the Oilers players and none have any balls to stand up to him. Don't tell me there are no one on the Oilers roster that is bigger than this punk.

I heard the funniest thing while watching Montreal's first goal...my 7 yrs old daughter said "reason the Oilers got scored on is because they don't work hard enough" "they are too weak"...too funny. Fire Eakins and sign her up. I'll even let her coach for skittles and gummy worms lol.

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#68 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:40PM
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I agreed Eller is right, too but who is going to tune him in. The Oilers are a bunch of little girls even #20. Proof...Brendan Gallagher, 5'9 and 178 lbs running around the ice laughing at all the Oilers players and none have any balls to stand up to him. Don't tell me there are no one on the Oilers roster that is bigger than this punk.

I heard the funniest thing while watching Montreal's first goal...my 7 yrs old daughter said "reason the Oilers got scored on is because they don't work hard enough" "they are too weak"...too funny. Fire Eakins and sign her up. I'll even let her coach for skittles and gummy worms lol.

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#69 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:40PM
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Poolanov wrote:

The only thing MacT can do to help right now is step behind that bench and teach those boys the ol' 2006 trap.

Except they have no human rake nor a goalie that could hold Rollie's jockstrap circa 2006.Rollie was money.Dubbie is way to inconstant.

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#70 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:41PM
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Mikey wrote:

Hana sounds like sportsnet reads the comments here. Dallas is not teaching the oilers to turn over the puck. It's not the coach.

I don't think Eakins is teaching them anything except how healthy a smoothie is over a Big Mac

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#71 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:42PM
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Some dirty mitts on that Eberle kid I tell ya.

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#72 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:42PM
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@Spydyr

I have no idea what Rollie is doing these days but I always though he would be a great goalie coach. That man had more focus than mr miagee.

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#73 BingBong
October 22 2013, 06:43PM
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Wow, same s**the, different day. Two brutal turnovers lead directly to two goals against; Dubnyk giving up two semi-weak goals. I'm betting Jones won't get much ice time the rest of the way.

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#74 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:44PM
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Mac962 wrote:

You know what ? We do look like a lost Junior team out there. There is no, none, zero sense of urgency, has anyone seen a forecheck push yet , some hitting. Man i am a die hard,, this is just so painful. If they dont sign Tootoo to inject some piss and vinegar into this lineup something is wrong. Eller is right.... and it is tearing me to pieces.

Come on Oilers - wake the f--k up.

Yakapov - Galchenyuk ? are you kidding me , Gallagher is better than Yakapov. I am sorry this kid is going to be bust , HE IS NOT what this team needs, we need drive Nail , trust me commrade, you are not that special. Prove me wrong please.

Eakins ? i am biting my lip ....but the teams play is a reflection of you as well. AHL this is not Dallas.

Trash me , i dont care. I am a hurting Oil diehard venting.

Co-sign. Agreed with you 1000%

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#75 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
October 22 2013, 06:44PM
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Dubnyk's the reason it isn't 5-0 right now, Spidey.

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#76 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:44PM
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YFC Prez wrote:

I have no idea what Rollie is doing these days but I always though he would be a great goalie coach. That man had more focus than mr miagee.

Dubnyk could sure use some more focus.Just not sure you can teach that.

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#77 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:45PM
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@BingBong

Semi weak goals. I don't think weak goals mean what you think they mean. Know what I mean?

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#78 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:46PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Dubnyk's the reason it isn't 5-0 right now, Spidey.

So your saying it is kinda like a junior team playing an NHL team ?

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#79 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:48PM
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@Spydyr

True that!!!

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#80 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:50PM
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Spydyr wrote:

So your saying it is kinda like a junior team playing an NHL team ?

I think Montreal is letting up now. They don't want to run up the score on this junior squad. Merci, Las Canediens

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#81 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:51PM
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Who do you think is the happiest guy in Edmonton today?

1)Iveson

2)Brown

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#82 moe
October 22 2013, 06:51PM
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I have a feeling there will be trades to come and maybe our Coach getting fired. I feel like we took a big step backwards this year.

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#83 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:52PM
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See yak. Move your feet. Draw a penalty. Now repeat please.

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#84 socaldave
October 22 2013, 06:53PM
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Atta boy, Yak! Throws a hit and draws a penalty. Gotta have one here, boys!

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#85 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
October 22 2013, 06:53PM
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Spydyr wrote:

So your saying it is kinda like a junior team playing an NHL team ?

Oh definitely, I won't disagree there. But ripping on Dubnyk tonight is venting your frustration in the wrong direction.

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#86 MOE
October 22 2013, 06:54PM
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I do know one thing. If i have to see that stupid boys and girls club commercial again i will shoot myself .

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#87 Harlie
October 22 2013, 06:55PM
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I'm not saying Eakins should go yet, but would the Moose have done us any worse at this point so far?

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#88 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:55PM
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Wow. Hammys wife. Wowsa!

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#89 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:55PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Oh definitely, I won't disagree there. But ripping on Dubnyk tonight is venting your frustration in the wrong direction.

It is not just about tonight.Never said a word about his game tonight.It is about his career since 2004.He still has not shown consistency.Something you need from a goalie to win in the NHL.

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#90 moe
October 22 2013, 06:57PM
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@Harlie

No he should go . Kruger was a better coach. Eakins cares more about his looks .

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#91 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:57PM
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@Spydyr

In all fairness. It took Rollie most of his career to find consistency.

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#92 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:57PM
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Spydyr wrote:

Who do you think is the happiest guy in Edmonton today?

1)Iveson

2)Brown

Wild guess...but I know it won't be the 2014 4th round pick they got from the Sharks for Brown.

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#93 BingBong
October 22 2013, 06:57PM
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YFC Prez wrote:

Semi weak goals. I don't think weak goals mean what you think they mean. Know what I mean?

First one was five-hole was it not? He looked slow getting over. Second one was a nice shot no doubt, but that leads me to my problem with Dubnyk: if he's not in position to get in front of the puck, he's not saving it. When is the last time he made a reflex trapper save? He's the opposite of Fuhr.

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#94 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 06:58PM
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This Oilers team has literally no fight. They only use the space they're given. It's nauseating to watch. Why are we paying these clowns so much money? This lineup shouldn't cost more than $30mil with this effort.

What a joke powerplay.

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#95 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 06:58PM
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@moe

Bingo. Well said. Very good observation.

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#96 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:59PM
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YFC Prez wrote:

In all fairness. It took Rollie most of his career to find consistency.

That is true but are you willing to wait another four years till Dubnyk is 31?

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#97 Shaun Doe
October 22 2013, 06:59PM
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That was a terrible PP as usual... Why was Jones on the ice? Did Eakins appreciate his ability to pass after that beauty to Gallagher?

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#98 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:59PM
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Yes. Hemsky deserved that. His great game was being lost in all the oiler suckiness from the rest of the club.

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#99 Ari Gold
October 22 2013, 07:00PM
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Nuge looks completely inept let alone neutralized. Kid can't play top line minutes..

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#100 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 07:00PM
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Hemsky would be worth his 5 million if they played the Habs like a divisional opponent.

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