GDB 33.0: BATTLING THE BRUINS

Jason Gregor
December 12 2013 12:33PM

The Boston Bruins are not only good on the ice; their marketing team is pretty solid off the ice as well. The Bruins have produced some humourous commercials the past five seasons, and this is one or my favourites. The Oilers aren't a divisional rival, but many Bruins fans have told me they have a healthy disdain for the Oilers due to two Stanley Cup Finals losses in 1988 and 1990.

The Bruins and Oilers are at opposite ends of the NHL standings, and have been since 2007/2008, and the Oilers will need to play their one of their best games of the season tonight, just to keep it close.

The Oilers might catch a break with Tukka Rask battling the flu, but the Bruins are stacked and they haven't lost in Edmonton since October 17th, 2000. That night Dan Lacouture and Brian Swanson scored their first NHL goals in a 6-1 thrashing of the Bruins. Since then, the Bruins have won four straight games in Edmonton including a 3-2 victory in their last visit to Edmonton on February 27th, 2011.

It is hard not to respect the Bruins.

They have skill, size, experience, solid two-way players, great goaltending and they are the toughest team in the NHL led by their captain Zdeno Chara. They don't have any weaknesses, and once again they are sitting first in the Eastern conference with a 21-8-2 record.

The Oilers are playing their best hockey of the seasons, 7-3-1 in their last 11 games, and while they didn't beat up on the top teams in the league, they did grab 15 of a possible 22 points. That is a solid stretch of hockey, but tonight will be a much more difficult task for the Oilers.

The Oilers will need to use their speed, and be disciplined with the puck. They can't continue to turn the puck over, especially on the powerplay, or the Bruins will skate them out of the rink.

LINEUP

Perron-RNH-Eberle
Hall-Gagner-Yakupov
Joensuu-Arcobello-Hemsky
Gazdic-Lander-Jones

Boyd Gordon still isn't healthy enough to play. Ryan Smyth is also banged up, and he'll be a game time decision. Eakins will switch up the PP units. They've been really hot or really cold, similar to the overall play of the team. Since November 5th, the PP is 17 for 71 (23.9%) so it's not like it has been terrible. The production has been great, but the bad giveaways are the issue. 

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

Jeff Petry has been cleared to play. He's an upgrade on Potter, and the Oilers need their best lineup against the Bruins.

Dubnyk

QUICK HITS....

  • It was a subtle message, but Dallas Eakins didn't play Taylor Hall in the final five minutes on Tuesday after Jeff Skinner tied the game. You might say it was only five minutes, but it was the most important time of the game, and I'm sure Hall got the message. I'm curious to see how he responds, especially in the defensive end.
     
  • Eakins did put Hall out for the PP in OT, which was a smart, but not being on the ice for the final five minutes of regulation should get Hall's attention.
     
  • It was interesting to note that Hall got a short stint on the bench, but Sam Gagner, despite some equally bad defensive decisions never missed a shift. Eakins must be giving him some leeway due to the injury, or he wants to keep throwing him over the boards with the hope it builds his confidence.
  • Firing Feaster today makes sense. There is no point waiting until the end of the season to can him, if the Flames knew he wasn't their guy moving forward. You can also expect the Flames' new GM to fire Hartley before the start of next season. The Flames should look at Oilers to see that firing coaches frequently doesn't change much, if you don't give the new coach better players.
     
  • Good luck to all of you in Fantasy Football playoffs...whether you are going for a championship, or trying to avoid losing the Toilet Bowl. Good luck. I have Manning, Decker and Moreno on my team...Please don't pick tonight to have an off night.

TONIGHT....

GAME DAY PREDICTION: Because everyone expects them to lose, the Oilers stun the Bruins with a 4-3 victory. P.S... I put the team logos in front of my son, and whichever one he touches, I go with that team to win. He is 8 days old, and his record is already 2-0.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers lineup has a combined four career goals vs. the Bruins; Hemsky, Perron, RNH and Ference each have one goal. Two Oilers will score their first career goal against Boston tonight.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Now that he isn't a member of the Calgary Flames, the Oilers will give St. Albert native, Jarome Iginla a healthy cheer when he announced over the PA. Iginla will be honoured, and he'll return the favour by scoring a second period goal. After the game, Oilers fans collectively decide never to cheer for an opposing player, who never played for the Oilers, ever again.

DAY TEN...MONTH OF GIVING

Yesterday we raised another $2,800 for Santas Anonymous.

Today we have an excellent and very generous package that was donated to us by The Home Matchmaker Michelle Derk from Remax Elite.

  • Up for grabs is the seller's commission for your house. (In a regular sale half the commission goes to the seller realtor and half to the buyer. So this is $3.5% on the first $100,000 and $1.5% on the balance).

On a $500,000 house that is a value of $9,500.00 just to give you a reference point.

You can bid on this package by calling 780.444.1260 between 2-6 p.m. today.

Thanks in advance.

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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#201 **
December 12 2013, 10:53PM
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The Oilers are .333 winning % when outshooting the opposition.

On a different subject, no Gagner's fanboys show up when their boy lays a stinky one and it's still fresh.

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#202 Rinkrat Brown
December 12 2013, 11:20PM
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2004Z06 wrote:

You are right! 6 coaches in 6 years would fix everything!

No... but sticking with one smart one for more than one season would.

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#203 RexHolez
December 12 2013, 11:27PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

Not remotely likely......but it would be just our luck to suffer through his development just to see him freakishly flourish somewhere else.....ok....$750 K

It's harder watching him suffer thru his development and not develop... Same with Gagner

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#204 camdog
December 13 2013, 12:00AM
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Rinkrat Brown wrote:

But coaching isn't the problem, no, no, coaching couldn't possibly be the problem... Defensive zone clearances aren't a coaching issue... Crikey! Defensive zone clearances are an issue when you're coaching U-12 girls' soccer! Why does Eakins get a free ride from the Edmonton media???

One things for sure a new goaltending coach couldn't hurt.

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#205 Truth
December 12 2013, 02:20PM
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The Feaster firing was way overdue. How he didn't get fired immediately following the offer sheet debacle is just mindblowing. Jankowski?! That's even worse than Alex Plante.

JG, hopefully you held the Oilers logo out of your sons reach for tonights pick. No chance for the Oilers unless the Bruins decide to play with ringette sticks.

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#206 rindog
December 12 2013, 03:16PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

I'm guessing the new GM will bring in a new coach before next year. Easy to can Hartley after finishing 25th his first year and likely even worse this year...

Most GMs like to hire their guy, and I doubt this will be different. The two bad years just make it easier to say Hartley isn't the guy. Hard to say how good or bad a coach is when you coach a team like the Flames, that doesn't have much talent.

So what does it mean when the Oilers go through 4+ coaches in five years when they "coach a team like the Oilers"?

Either the coaches haven't been been good enough or the players arent good enough and management isn't competent enough to recognize it.

Either way, it sure sucks for the fans...

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#207 tileguy55
December 12 2013, 05:17PM
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@camdog

here here.

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#208 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 08:12PM
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RexHolez wrote:

This game kinda sums up there season... Dubnyk blows it early, and now we gotta pretend to care for the rest of it

Beer helps me to pretend to care.

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#209 Hockey fan 1976
December 12 2013, 08:18PM
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Scary thing is Boston isn't even playing as physical as as I know they can play, maybe they are looking at this game as practice before their actual NHL this weekend. Thank you Barons for the great scrimmage !!!

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#210 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 08:51PM
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** wrote:

I hate when fourth liners like Gazdic are evaluated like the rest of the forwards. He is a different breed, with a different job, his effectiveness should be measured differently.

Intangibles,intangibles...that is all.

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#211 **
December 12 2013, 09:20PM
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Credit to Ebs and Yaks, they've been back checking and moving to cover. Hell Ebs even threw one on Chara.

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#212 @Oilanderp
December 12 2013, 09:23PM
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Now THAT is a damn nice pushback period! Not just because of the score either. They're shooting from almost everywhere and not acting like they are playing an all-star game... interesting.

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#213 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 09:29PM
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

I can't tell if I should be enjoying what I'm seeing.....too many intangibles..... Romulus, can you please check the stats sheet and tell me whether or not I should be enjoying this?

Corsi what is the corsi?

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#214 vetinari
December 12 2013, 09:33PM
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Eakins have a rye & coke going in that cup or what?

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#215 vetinari
December 12 2013, 09:43PM
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Calgary, sadly, wins in OT over Carolina. C'mon boys, we need to keep pace!

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#216 vetinari
December 12 2013, 09:49PM
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Spydyr wrote:

Interesting stat they put up,Gagner was 6th in points since the 2007 draft Perron is 26th.Who would you rather have on your team.Come on stat guys explain to me why you would want Gagner on your team over Perron

Gagner was rushed to the NHL while Perron was given time to develop. Both have had significant injuries in their careers, but Perron is more competitive and seems more driven. Gags has a good hockey bloodline but he's been erratic the past year or so.

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#217 vetinari
December 12 2013, 09:54PM
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Spydyr wrote:

After tonight's game you have the audacity to defend Gagner?

Man i wish Gagner had balls as big as yours.

At this moment, I trust Perron more and have more faith in him to tie the game up. Gagner needs "a reset". And soon.

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#218 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 10:23PM
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Thumby wrote:

Ok we lost - but I have to say those last 2 periods were damn good for the Oil.

If they bring that to the rink every night, I'd be more than pleased and we'd win our fair share of games.

But they have to get Bryz in net so we don't always start the game -1 on a shi$$y Dub softie...I don't care about his save %, his bad goal per game is just killing our mojo.

Ever dare to think Boston took their foot off the gas a bit?

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#219 Thumby
December 12 2013, 10:34PM
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Spydyr wrote:

Ever dare to think Boston took their foot off the gas a bit?

Possibly.

But the Oil had a legit push back...you cant deny the "tilting the ice" effect your tough guy gives the team when he feeds his fist to the other teams tough guy!

I vote Gazdik for captain.

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#220 Serious Gord
December 12 2013, 10:41PM
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Spydyr wrote:

I do believe they were up 3-0 after the first.

Set the cruise control win 4-2

And they did it with five regulars out and their best goalie apparently so sick he was barely able to sit on the bench.

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#221 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 10:42PM
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Thumby wrote:

I liked how our 4th line played tonight...you cant ask more from them.

Let's keep the blame focused on the obvious culprits - Dub, Gag and the crap PP.

This team needs team toughness not one guy on the fourth line.

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#222 Quicksilver ballet
December 12 2013, 10:51PM
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With Dubey, Hemsky, N.Schultz and Gagner off the books later this season, the Oilers would certainly have some space to possibly bring in a top pairing blueliner or two.

Offer Gudbranson a redonkulous 5 yr 22 million dollar leap of faith RFA offer sheet.

Yeah, I'm desperate.

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#223 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 10:52PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

With Dubey, Hemsky, N.Schultz and Gagner off the books later this season, the Oilers would certainly have some space to possibly bring in a top pairing blueliner or two.

Offer Gudbranson a redonkulous 5 yr 22 million dollar leap of faith RFA offer sheet.

Yeah, I'm desperate.

At least you never said they should trade for Weber.

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#224 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 12 2013, 11:02PM
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Wohin gehst du? wrote:

Completely unrelated, I was just at the Barons site, and I saw that Ty Rimmer, the goalie who has just three games played, has more points than Will Acton, who has played four...

Will who?

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#225 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 11:02PM
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Wohin gehst du? wrote:

Completely unrelated, I was just at the Barons site, and I saw that Ty Rimmer, the goalie who has just three games played, has more points than Will Acton, who has played four...

But who is Rimmer related too?

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#226 bwar
December 12 2013, 11:37PM
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Remember that one time Eakins put out Hall-Gagner-Yakupov for a defensive zone faceoff against the Lucic-Krejci-Iginla line? Yeah that was a free goal for Boston.

Remember that one time Dubnyk got scored on with a dump in? Yeah that was a free goal for Boston.

TRADE EVERYONE AND FIRE EVERYONE (except for Perron, keep Perron)

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#227 2004Z06
December 13 2013, 08:43AM
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Rinkrat Brown wrote:

But coaching isn't the problem, no, no, coaching couldn't possibly be the problem... Defensive zone clearances aren't a coaching issue... Crikey! Defensive zone clearances are an issue when you're coaching U-12 girls' soccer! Why does Eakins get a free ride from the Edmonton media???

Unless you are in the room, or on the ice in practice, you can't know for sure what the coach is teaching them.

I am sure he isn't teaching them to turn the puck over with lazy passes across the ice, toe drags at the line or the behind the back no look passes that end up in our net.

These players are not executing the system, that is not the coaches fault. Every one of these first rounder's got by on talent alone in jr. They all have some really bad habits that need to be broken.

How about we give the guy a season before we hang him from the rafters?

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#228 tileguy55
December 12 2013, 01:15PM
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all the Bruins commercial can be found here.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WCVdBHRJvhM

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#229 Cheapskate
December 12 2013, 01:55PM
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Smokey wrote:

No offence 2 percent realty is cheeper and I dont have to win a prize.

Well that's the spirit :(

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#230 The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33
December 12 2013, 03:19PM
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Old Timer wrote:

Awesome.

I will record it on my new Sony Beta recorder.

Does it come with the remote that has a long cord?

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#231 michael
December 12 2013, 04:11PM
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PM>35/46 for 410 yards. Decker 129 yards 2 tds. Moreno 85rushing/27recieving 1 td. Broncos 42- Chargers 18

Oilers 5-2. Perron 2 goals.

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#232 Bobby
December 12 2013, 04:33PM
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Oilers play flag football, have done so for years. Bruins are big and tough

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#233 Soccer Steve
December 12 2013, 06:52PM
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I really hope the fans at Rexall don't cheer for Iginla. He was a Calgary Flamer. We even booed Smid last Saturday (until a puck to the face flattened him and he got up slowly).

If there was ever an expert cheat-shot artist beneath a wide smile it's Jarome.

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#234 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 08:05PM
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Soccer Steve wrote:

The Oilers 'organization' has so many elephants in the room they can't keep them straight anymore. Whoever 'they' are.

Cough Gagner cough.

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#235 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 08:07PM
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tileguy wrote:

Did sportsnet hire a bunch of highschool sound techs tonight? And these guy are a telecommunication company. Glad they have tv rights for the next 12 yrs.

I thought the game was being broadcast in SD. Actually had to check that it was in HD.

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#236 Andy7190
December 12 2013, 08:09PM
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@Hauk15

I missed that goal. I have no idea if they are discussing the need for a professional stylist in either Alberta city.

But they should.

Oops. Another goal. Dubnyk down again.

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#237 OilMan31
December 12 2013, 08:09PM
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And Game...

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#238 Chainsawz
December 12 2013, 08:15PM
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I don't understand. The Oilers had a defenceman on the ice. How did they score a shortie there?

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#239 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 08:19PM
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RexHolez wrote:

Beer use to help me... These days only whiskey gets the job done

If you have to move on to crack get help.

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#240 **
December 12 2013, 08:23PM
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vetinari wrote:

I suggest that we take it one step further:

"Did you see that 50 foot Dubnyk, lobbed from the blue line?"

HE totally Dubnyked that one

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#241 Rod from Viking
December 12 2013, 08:23PM
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Rod from Viking wrote:

I don't expect the Bruin's "A" game tonight due to injuries,flu and on the road, I also don't think the Oiler's will win but it may be a close game. I am more interested in tomorrows game in Vancouver, this is the first game since Zack(the simpleton) Kassian broke Sam's jaw. Let's compare the team toughness; Canuck's have Kassian, Bieksa,Sestito,Stanton,Alberts and Garrison, The Oiler's have Gadzic and Ference(kind of) and who else? After the Canuck's ran the Oiler's show in Edmonton McTavish picked up McIntyre. With no chance for play-offs I hope he is called up but I won't hold my breath.

OK, the Bruins don't need their B game to dominate this team, that howitzer first goal really set the tone, Gagner if you are going to stand in front of our net either block the shot, tickle Lucic or something, nice shot Larson and great back checking Eberle (wow)

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#242 Rod from Viking
December 12 2013, 08:55PM
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vetinari wrote:

Good for Gazdic, but did you notice, Lucic never buckled even after taking a solid shot to the chin? The fight was a draw but Lucic is one, tough dude.

Gags... go find Chara and see if he'll go? When you wake up next October, we'll tell you how you did.*

*Hey, it at least takes care of one of our defensive liabilities for awhile, right?

I was thinking the same thing, he has to save himself for Kassian tomorrow night.

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#243 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 09:20PM
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Alsker wrote:

Thanks for the recap, damn choked I missed the Gazdic battle. Just not enough of 'em anymore. Well wheres the rum and lets get ready for the third!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Best Oiler scrap this year.PVR sportsdesk tonight.

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#244 vetinari
December 12 2013, 09:24PM
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Gazdic started slow in the tilt and then picked it up as they went on. For a medium weight, he'll earn some cred for busting up Lucic's lip and holding him to a draw.

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#245 Quicksilver ballet
December 12 2013, 09:41PM
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Rod from Viking wrote:

McTavish has to be given props for Perron,Gadzic & Gordon, possibly Ference,Belov,Bryzgalov and Joensuu(only time will tell), thumbs down to Gagner contract.

Grabeshkov didn't pass the smell test either.

Not sold on Joensuu, not much difference between him and Patrell.

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#246 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 12 2013, 09:47PM
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Win or loose...this one of the better games I've seen in a quite a while..

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#247 Spydyr
December 12 2013, 10:09PM
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#49 Spydyr December 12 2013, 06:49PM

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: When push comes to shove the little guy loses.Oilers hang in until the Bruins try hard enough to pick up the two points.

Pretty bang on the Bruins played one period and won the game.

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#248 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 12 2013, 10:41PM
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** wrote:

Actually Jonathan Willis posted a goalie list with numbers updated for the modern day sv%. Dubnyk ends up somewhere in the bottom third of the list.

See!!!.....I knew there was a stat that would explain it. Thank you. I feel better.

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#249 **
December 12 2013, 10:52PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

With Dubey, Hemsky, N.Schultz and Gagner off the books later this season, the Oilers would certainly have some space to possibly bring in a top pairing blueliner or two.

Offer Gudbranson a redonkulous 5 yr 22 million dollar leap of faith RFA offer sheet.

Yeah, I'm desperate.

Aside form Ference, the whole blue line and all the goalies are off the books this season.

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#250 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 12 2013, 10:53PM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

With Dubey, Hemsky, N.Schultz and Gagner off the books later this season, the Oilers would certainly have some space to possibly bring in a top pairing blueliner or two.

Offer Gudbranson a redonkulous 5 yr 22 million dollar leap of faith RFA offer sheet.

Yeah, I'm desperate.

Actually.....not really that outrageous an idea....would fall in the category of bold...

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