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 

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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 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 07:50PM
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Spydyr wrote:

Yeah, they should send Arcobello after him .

How about LaBarbara

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#102 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 07:53PM
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The look on the Habs coach's face reminded me of Eakins look last week.

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#103 Poolanov
October 22 2013, 07:55PM
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@#YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty

SQEEZE ME!!!!!!!!!!!

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#104 BingBong
October 22 2013, 07:55PM
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YFC Prez wrote:

Atta boy nug. Whatta pass

I thought the pass by Petry was even nicer!

Ah, Jones making me eat my words. Nice. Perron is definitely my new favourite Oiler.

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#105 Reg Dunlop
October 22 2013, 07:58PM
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Regardless of the outcome, Pitlick has had solid game. With his wheels he could be Glencross. Also, and we all kinda knew, Perron is a prick. Go oil.

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#106 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 08:01PM
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@JohnDoe

Dubnyk looks on his game tonight.As much as it pains me have to give him props.

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#107 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
October 22 2013, 08:01PM
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LoweBlow wrote:

Nuge looks completely inept let alone neutralized. Kid can't play top line minutes..

**crickets**

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#108 bazmagoo
October 22 2013, 08:04PM
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Early days yet, but is Arcobello potentially making Gagner expendable? Arco looks light years ahead of Gags defensively, that's for sure. Gagner's no movement clause is only for next season, hmmmm.

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#109 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 08:05PM
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#YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty wrote:

My bad...I meant to say 4-2 Edmonton...LOL

Sometimes that cat gets bored and falls asleep.Nah, the Oilers have fought played hard and fought back back .Keep it up boys there is still lots of time to turn the season around.

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#110 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
October 22 2013, 08:05PM
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@JohnDoe

Spoken like a true moron.

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#111 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
October 22 2013, 08:08PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Spoken like a true moron.

I propsed myself because RUM.

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#112 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 08:08PM
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Naky wrote:

I don't disagree entirely that anyone who plays between Hall and Eberle is going to get points, that's also completely discounting the legitimate plays Arcobello has been making to get them the puck so -they- can score. Belittling his contributions is kind of silly.

I'm thinking Gagner comes back playing the wing. With Hall out it just makes sense.

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#113 oldhippy
October 22 2013, 08:09PM
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JohnDoe wrote:

Arcobello sucks. Anybody and I mean anybody that plays between Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle is going to pick up assists. There is a reason why Arcobello has 0 goals. Sam Gagner back means Arco back down to OKC.

Dumbest comment tonight, easily beating out several truly inane ones.

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#114 oldhippy
October 22 2013, 08:12PM
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Arco tied for rookie point lead. No Hall tonight to "pad" his stats. Did not play with Eberle for at least three games. Gagner and RNH missing for the first two games. Out hitting most players on the team. Was doing great at face-offs outside tonight. The big decision is where Gagner plays when he is cleared.

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#115 Craig1981
October 22 2013, 08:16PM
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3-6-1 in the first 10 games. With 7 of them away, new coaching system, 40% new roster, and missing your top 2 centers at times. Not as great as you hope for, but its not too terrible and the season is not doomed.

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#116 Poolanov
October 22 2013, 08:29PM
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Wow watching this flames game makes me want to slip into a coma compared to watching our boys. That's one good thing ...I guess

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#117 LoweBlow
October 22 2013, 08:34PM
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Good on Arco. He's quickly becoming one if my favourites. He doesn't give the puck away, he hits, doesn't dhy away from traffic and has a nose for offence. Give this kid a full time job!

The Oil beat two playoff teams in a row? I must be dreaming. Sonehow this just doesn't feel right after that horrendous first period.

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#118 Harlie
October 22 2013, 09:47PM
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looks like I went off on the DSF deep end during the game. haha emotional

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#119 Alsker
October 22 2013, 10:26PM
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@The 90's were worse (Formerly Oilers need Ogie Oglethorpe)

Thx..definitely to early to consider trading him, just hoping he finds himself soon.

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#120 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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#121 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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#122 LoweBlow
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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#123 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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#124 BLAKPOO
October 22 2013, 04:56PM
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@LoweBlow

That just made my day.

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#125 Oasis
October 22 2013, 05:17PM
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LoweBlow 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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#126 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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#127 27Ginge
October 22 2013, 05:24PM
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@LoweBlow

Impressive. I like the subtlety.

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#128 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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#129 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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#130 LoweBlow
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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#131 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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#132 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:16PM
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@LoweBlow

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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#133 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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#134 Harlie
October 22 2013, 06:19PM
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Oh boy MacT. This don't look good fella.

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#135 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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#136 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:22PM
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Edit. I phone double post again

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#137 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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#138 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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#139 Spydyr
October 22 2013, 06:42PM
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Some dirty mitts on that Eberle kid I tell ya.

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#140 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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#141 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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#142 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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#143 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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#144 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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#145 YFC Prez
October 22 2013, 06:55PM
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Wow. Hammys wife. Wowsa!

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#146 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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#147 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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#148 #YakCityGettingScrewedOverByCoach&Mgmty
October 22 2013, 07:05PM
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MOE wrote:

I do know one thing. If i have to see that stupid boys and girls club commercial again i will shoot myself .

Ditto...my gun is already cocked.

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#149 BingBong
October 22 2013, 07:07PM
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Ha, Smid.

Gotta play the lottery tomorrow...

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#150 Shaun Doe
October 22 2013, 07:11PM
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I always felt that if Smid scores the Oilers HAVE to win. It just seems like such a waste if they don't.

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