GDB 38.0: Perron Sees His Old Team

Jonathan Willis
December 21 2013 01:36PM

The Edmonton Oilers return to Rexall tonight to face David Perron’s old squad, the St. Louis Blues, in what will be the first of three meetings between the teams.

The Trade

Craig MacTavish hasn’t had a perfect start to his tenure as general manager, but he’s done some nice things and been willing to make improvements when opportunity has come along. One of those opportunities was Perron, who became available as the Blues needed to cut salary to re-sign players like Alex Pietrangelo.

Thus far, the deal’s been awfully lopsided:

  • David Perron (Edmonton): 33GP, 14G-13A-27PTS.
  • Magnus Paajarvi (St. Louis): 15GP, 2G-0A-2PTS.
  • Second round pick in 2014 (St. Louis): Shaping up to be in the 30-35 range.

Once Paajarvi finds his legs and if that second round pick pans out this should get a little better for St. Louis, but it’s a move that made Edmonton a better team right now, and that’s important. If MacTavish can find three or four more of these the Oilers will be in great shape.

The Opposition

Edmonton hasn’t played the Blues so far this year, but the Blues are a good team and Edmonton has trouble with good teams. Many will focus on them being big and strong and tough but the fact that they’re in playoff position right now is what makes them scary. Take a look at the Oilers’ record this season against teams currently sitting in the top-eight in either conference:

  • Team inside the top eight: 2-17-2
  • Team outside the top eight: 9-6-1

Edmonton’s been pretty good against bad teams, but has been getting hammered by the good ones (an 8-2 win over Colorado notwithstanding).

The Lineup

Some interesting items there. With all of 12 healthy forwards, Dalls Eakins hasn’t got much in the way of choices, so he’s put together a power-vs.-power line, a tough minutes line and done what he can with the rest. With Luke Gazdic on the wing it’s a good bet that Sam Gagner and Nail Yakupov are the “fourth” line and will be spotted against the weakest available opposition; maybe it will help. The other line is super interesting, because Lander has struggled so far and finally gets a skilled guy (and a guy a lot like his AHL sidekick Linus Omark) on his wing. Jesse Joensuu isn’t exactly a prize as the other winger, but he’s comparable to one guy Lander’s been playing with and better than the other.

On defence it’s just nice to see Philip Larsen, the team’s seventh-best defenceman, taking a seat.

Predictions

Game day prediction: A 1-0 St. Louis Blues victory 

Obvious game day prediction: Dallas Eakins gets many opportunities to work on his facial expressions. They range from incredulous (really, that's a penalty now?) to disgusted (the power play bobbles the puck at the blueline because of course it does) to resigned (well, they were going to score eventually) to a clear desire that he had stayed in the AHL.

Not-so-obvious gameday prediction: While this will be a one-sided and boring game, it won't be the most boring game of the season. That's coming in March when Edmonton next plays the Los Angeles Kings.

Recently by Jonathan Willis

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Jonathan Willis is a freelance writer. He currently works for Oilers Nation, Sportsnet, the Edmonton Journal and Bleacher Report. He's co-written three books and worked for myriad websites, including Grantland, ESPN, The Score, and Hockey Prospectus. He was previously the founder and managing editor of Copper & Blue.
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#101 Ed in PV
December 22 2013, 06:01AM
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A number of random thoughts.

1. Yak needs to be sent to OKC. He is adding nothing to the team and makes the mantra of accountability a farce. I hope the Oil management (and I use the term loosely)are not influenced by Larianov's whining from last month. If Yak pouts about the demotion and bolts to the KHL, better to get rid of the cancer now than let it continue to fester.

2. I also suggest that Yak will want a 6 millionish contract similar to RHH to be offered next year. The Oil have set a precedent with No.1s when they gave RNH the money for what was it, 4 goals last year.

3. When the HNIC panel was filling time waiting for Hall to take the fall for the team on After Hours, they got into a heated debate about whether the Oil should de something now or "be patient". The exchange became quite heated. Freideman was up his you know what when he stated the Oils shouldn't trade any of their young talent because they "might be great somewhere else". This topic gets kicked around all the time on this site. Oil cannot be afraid to trade any asset they have, they cannot be paralyzed by fear of what might be.

4. I wonder if the Oil made a mistake when they decided to keep Gagner in stead of Cogs. The Ducks have done a great job with Cogs, giving him a defined role he can thrive on. Oil never really knew what to do with Cogs. They did a good job finding out what his deficiencies were, but didn't seem to understand his strengths.

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#102 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 22 2013, 08:02AM
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@Sir Lurks Alot

"Gagner, stop chewing on your mouthguard, you're not Patrick Kane, you may as well be his cab driver."

Zing!

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#103 Zamboni Driver
December 22 2013, 10:23AM
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I have no idea what needs to be done at the senior levels, truly. I don't know if Lowe does anything anymore. I don't know about getting rid of MacTavish (tough to trade when you only have 3 or 4 guys anyone would want). Eakins....ANOTHER coach down the crapper?

What I do know is this...if Rexall Pharmacies continually got prescriptions wrong, had their stores falling apart, staff sleeping at the till, I'm pretty sure Batman would do something about it....

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#104 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 08:15PM
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Didn't even notice Potter was gone or back. Tells you pretty much all you need to know about that player.

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#105 The War Amp Champ
December 22 2013, 12:30AM
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The boys on the bus? No no no more like the boys on the short bus

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#106 LoweBlow
December 22 2013, 03:58AM
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Glad I didn't bother wasting my time watching that game!

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#107 Ed in PV
December 22 2013, 05:31AM
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Serious Gord wrote:

Hey Jonathon: here's a blog post topic for you:

Just looking at the stats for the year compared to the worst year ever for the oil 92-93 when they got 60 pts in 84 games

This year they are on track to easily shatter that record.

At 25 in 38 they are in track for 54 points in 82 (or 55 in 84).

But wait!! It gets worse:

In 92-93 there was no OT/SO point. Therefore were they playing using the old system they would have only 7 regulation wins and 4 more ties and thus only 21 points in 38 games.

Using the old system they are on track to get 45 in 82 or 46/47 in 84.

That's 25% worse than the worstest the oil has ever ever been before.

Just to get back to tying for being the worst team in oilers history they are going to have to have a playoff level winning percentage for the remainder of the season.

Just seems impossible that nothing will be done if the oil lose to cgy on the 27th. Is there another organization in all of pro sport that would not terminate its coach at such a juncture - especially in light of the promises the organization made during the off season?

This team through the 1st 38 games are the worst in Oil history.

Willis, I think you should start a game by game chart showing how the Oil are tracking against the worst teams in NHL history. I wonder if they have a chance to be the worst of all time?

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#109 RexHolez
December 21 2013, 03:42PM
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"It’s a move that made Edmonton a better team right now"

While I agree Perron is a better player than PRV right now, I'd have to look at the record and argue that they are in no way a better team for it

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#110 S cottV
December 21 2013, 03:59PM
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It's not any kind of new defence first strategy from Eakins that explains less than expected offensive production from some our skill players.

If it were - you would think there would be some evidence of improving team defence and really we just keep giving up too many unnecessary ga's.

I think the player group is shocked and discouraged at where the team is at in the standings and they don't just blame themselves - they blame Eakins and his trial and error AHL to NHL learning curve.

They no damn well that his ill conceived strategies and systems, later self declared as unsuited to the player group - have made this hole deeper than it had to be and they are pissed off - which has had a negative effect on performance.

I say that Eakins has cost the team at least 10 learning curve points in the standings. That would otherwise have put this team at .500 and some hope for a miracle run to make the playoffs. Hope can be a powerful driver of performance - for as long as there is at least some hope. Eakins directed this group into a no hope scenario by mid Nov and anyone who thinks that ain't a problem believes in moral victories - "he did the best he could with what he had to work with" Are you kidding? We are in 29th place and nothing in particular seems to be getting any better.

It really looks like a player group that is disillusioned by its leaders to me. There is a disconnect between them and Eakins will have his hands full trying to hold this thing together for the balance of the season.

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#111 Rheal1
December 21 2013, 06:26PM
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$20 Omark does good in Buffalo. Edmonton Oilers will become the "what not to do" for many future professional sports franchise owners. They'll make the history books. No wonder the talk back on tsn.ca/nhl is dead empty for Edmonton results… Tonight live coast to coast on CBC….. Another Oilers failure:)

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#113 Zamboni Driver
December 21 2013, 10:02PM
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So. Trash away if you must.

Fallon and Timberlake on SNL.

Night night Oilers.

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#114 Oilers4ever
December 21 2013, 10:22PM
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Hey look... the edmonton arseholes are playing again tonight. Go figure. I give up on this team. Might as well. Clearly they've given up on themselves. Losers.

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#115 The War Amp Champ
December 21 2013, 10:28PM
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Well I figured out how to win in Edmonton!!! All you have to do is play for the other team!! Good old 6 rings really has taken the soilers to a whole new level of suckcess. Can't wait for 2016 when good old Rodger invites us to his place where we can pay double to watch such awesome hockey. #rebuild year 15 and counting

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#116 **
December 21 2013, 10:44PM
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six for six against the top teams and Colorado. I called it. I'm sad.

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#117 michael
December 22 2013, 05:32AM
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No disappointment from this cat.Went to be bed expecting a 3-0 shut out. Woke up. 6-0.

Expectations exceeded. Does not take a PHD to figure out where the Oilers need to improve.Need bigger heavier Dmen, and Forwards on their 3rd and 4 th lines who are willing to get dirty.

ST Louis has a plethora of these guys and a coach with more experience in his thumbnail than Eakins has total. Hitch was going to make the Oil look brutal and he did.

Eakins only need look at who is kicking his ass coaching wise to see how little he knows and open his mind to the possibility that he does not know everything. The more I watch the team.The more I see how much further we have to go both on and off the ice.

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#118 outdoorzguy
December 22 2013, 07:18AM
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Maybe the owner should be flown in from Vancouver so he can see first hand what a mess this team is. Obviously the message he's getting from Loser Lowe is garbled...probably the six rings in hs mouth as he talks.

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#119 **
December 21 2013, 03:43PM
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7-2 Blues. Lock it and throw the key.

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#120 Spaz
December 21 2013, 05:44PM
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Going to the $#%# show tonight but a silver lining watching HNIC early game - we didn't give David Clarkson 7+million dollars.

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#121 Rheal1
December 21 2013, 06:18PM
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Krueger must be super happy not to be part of this horrible organization. Smid, Horcoff, Omark & LaBarbera as well. Horcoff looks very happy & productive in Dallas. This is Oil country!!!!!!!! This team sucks!!! Eakins sucks!!!! His assistant coaches suck!!!! This team will lose again this evening by a few goals, ONLY because the cosmonaut is in net. BTW Eakins decision to go with DD in net last game proves he is INCOMPETENT.

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#122 Reg Dunlop
December 21 2013, 08:36PM
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Great to see Nuge try to stand up for himself. Where are his teammates though?

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#123 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 09:19PM
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@Zamboni Driver

Debrusk is especially horrible. Stauffer did okay on the play by play the other night, I think that might be his true calling.

Hrudey is just crappy behind a microphone, he constantly stumbles over his words and you end up with half formed sentences that make no sense. It makes him sound like an oaf.

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#124 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 09:36PM
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@Zamboni Driver

The physicality is standing out this game. St Louis is ragdolling someone every shift, just about.

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#125 Oilers4ever
December 21 2013, 10:27PM
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Lets see if we can get shutout again. Goose eggs are good. Morons!!!

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#126 Kevin
December 21 2013, 11:41PM
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Harry wrote:

After the game someone threw their toilet paper I mean jersey on the ice.

WHAT A COMPLETE JOKE

carefull what you say on here you may give Katz some ideas and he start selling toilet paper with the Oiler Logal at the Rexal stores. Further linning his pockets.

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#127 Smokey
December 22 2013, 12:06AM
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Jersey on the ice should send a message loud and clear. Think its a sad message.

Clean house. Let's start the rebuild.

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#128 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 21 2013, 02:08PM
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Arius Mumin wrote:

Those lines are sooooooo sad, they're sucking the spirit out of me as I type this.

Why you hef to be med?

Edit: Bryz gives me a reason to watch the game!

Bryz and PRV

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#129 Ed in PV
December 21 2013, 05:00PM
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It seems to me pretty much every home game vs a good opponent has been 3 or 4 zip by the 25 minute mark. Some times the opponent puts it on cruise control after that and the Oil save some face in the last half of the game. I can't find a reason to suggest this game will be anything different.

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#130 Butters
December 21 2013, 06:17PM
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GDB 38.0? You mean we are not even half way through this pile yet? Sigh.

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#131 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 08:42PM
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I really hate Kelly Hrudey. Dude seems like a douche. And for a former NHLer, he comes across as knowing next to nothing about the game. Maybe it's just me and all the negativity this season's been stuffing down my throat.

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#132 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 09:06PM
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@@Oilanderp

Your wit knows no bounds.

Sean Avery played 12 seasons. Just saying.

EDIT: "To be a good goalie in this league, you have to know how to read plays; that's why Bryzgalov read that one." Thanks, Kelly.

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#133 Zamboni Driver
December 21 2013, 09:16PM
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Honestly, people who think commentators (and referees for that matter) "hate" the Oilers really need to a) give head a shake; b) Understand just how bad it is having to listen to Debrusk and Stauffer doing 'colour commentary'.

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#134 RexHolez
December 21 2013, 09:22PM
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Hrudey's almost as bad at commentary as the Oilers are at playing hockey

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#135 Arius Mumin
December 21 2013, 09:31PM
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Why do these commentators believe that people tune in to hear them talk about their weight and recreational events?

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#136 Reg Dunlop
December 21 2013, 09:39PM
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Zamboni Driver wrote:

Man, St. Louis is good.

They're absolutely toying with the Oilers. Playing an entirely different game.

Yep, a top 5 team, they would be a cup contender if the Kings and Hawks were not on the same side of the draw. Tonight, if the oil don't get shut out it will constitute another moral victory.

Off topic, is it possible that the oil are trying to maximize Bryz' value, fully intending to trade him by the deadline? Nothing but glowing comments, no sideshow. Our best shot at Ekblad is to have DD between the pipes.

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#137 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 10:09PM
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You could clearly hear a Blue there saying 'What are you gonna do huh? What are you gonna do?' Out hit, out played, just straight up out gamed.

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#138 Kevin
December 21 2013, 10:31PM
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DonDon wrote:

Don't count on it.

That 2nd round draft pick from the Oil may be very valuable to St. Louis and an important loss for the Oil.

no fear there we can't draft anything out side of a top 5 no brainer anyways.

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#139 The War Amp Champ
December 21 2013, 11:28PM
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Could someone ask Ferrence to knock out Petry and that Potter before the jets game please and thanks

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#140 **
December 22 2013, 12:04AM
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Cameron wrote:

To paraphrase Miracle Max in The Princess Bride, "This team is not all dead, just mostly dead."

some one else posted this gem on the site a couple of months ago:

KLowe: "I think I know a little bit about winning, if there's ever a concern"

Inigo Montoya: "You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means"

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#141 Drowning in Oil
December 22 2013, 12:48AM
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Serious Gord wrote:

Hey Jonathon: here's a blog post topic for you:

Just looking at the stats for the year compared to the worst year ever for the oil 92-93 when they got 60 pts in 84 games

This year they are on track to easily shatter that record.

At 25 in 38 they are in track for 54 points in 82 (or 55 in 84).

But wait!! It gets worse:

In 92-93 there was no OT/SO point. Therefore were they playing using the old system they would have only 7 regulation wins and 4 more ties and thus only 21 points in 38 games.

Using the old system they are on track to get 45 in 82 or 46/47 in 84.

That's 25% worse than the worstest the oil has ever ever been before.

Just to get back to tying for being the worst team in oilers history they are going to have to have a playoff level winning percentage for the remainder of the season.

Just seems impossible that nothing will be done if the oil lose to cgy on the 27th. Is there another organization in all of pro sport that would not terminate its coach at such a juncture - especially in light of the promises the organization made during the off season?

You make to much sense. I am fairly certain Mac T will not admit his failure and he will use the "CONTINUITY" card to justify his mistake. This team is a train wreck........ the best thing any of us can do is just ignore the Oiler propaganda lead by that know it all Stauffer and just continue to hound this team until change comes. If we stop hounding them, the tunnel will just get longer and darker!!!

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#142 Spurzey
December 22 2013, 05:57AM
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Since this season is already floating around in the bowl, it's time to start flushing some of the turds. Starting with the 2 clowns who pose as associate coaches.

Spurzey out.

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#143 MMAX
December 22 2013, 07:37AM
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Come on Katzy, step up to the plate, let's see if you have a set of balls. Am I the only one who thinks this DB doesn't give a sh*t? Sell your "toy" back to the EIG.

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#144 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 22 2013, 07:45AM
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TDSM31 wrote:

Its the season. Hrudey's far from a douche. My nephew has Down Syndrome and Kelly donates a ton of time and money to the PREP foundation which helps support and teach kids with DS. And this is just one of the many charity's he and his wife donate their time and money to. He might not hit all the marks with his color commentary but he's really a stand up guy.

Well it seems I was mistaken about the douche accusations, my apologies. Still hate his 'color' commentary though. I miss Rod Phillips...

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#145 Slats
December 21 2013, 05:09PM
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Sorry to disagree but that line-up is brutal . . . not interesting Willis.

Interesting is a line up where skill vs skill or brawn vs brawn or History of bad hit vs instigator/hitter

This Match-up is Men vs. Boys; Coached vs. Uncoached (unlistened to); Passion vs. no passion

Until these players care as much as ON they will never be winners, just pay-cheque cashers.

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#146 FireKLowe
December 21 2013, 07:28PM
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FireKLowe wrote:

I feel sorry for Perron. Poor guy got traded to this mickey mouse club from a contender.

Who are these f'cks that "thumbs down" posts that tell it like it is? People like you make me sick. Open your f'cking eyes and smell the coffee!

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#147 Butters
December 21 2013, 07:52PM
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sizedoesmatter wrote:

Hope you all don't break your ankle jumping off the bandwagon

Nope, we are still on it, the wheels have fallen off, and it's upside down and on fire, but were either too stupid or too stubborn to jump off.

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#148 Zamboni Driver
December 21 2013, 09:23PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Debrusk is especially horrible. Stauffer did okay on the play by play the other night, I think that might be his true calling.

Hrudey is just crappy behind a microphone, he constantly stumbles over his words and you end up with half formed sentences that make no sense. It makes him sound like an oaf.

I agree with that. Liked Hrudey in the studio, not so much in the booth. Can't see him getting a ticket to Mister Rogers' neighbourhood.

Debrusk is an embarrassment - I understand what his paycheque says, but from time to time, when a team finishes at the bottom of the league, it is okay to mention a 'booboo' or two by one of the players. Listening to Debrusk everyone wearing god-awful orange and blue is destined for the Hall of Fame.

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#149 Hockey fan 1976
December 21 2013, 10:08PM
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Backes is toying with Hall. Hahahah. Maybe one day Hall can play similar game, for now men vs. boys AGAIN!!!

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#150 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 10:21PM
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Well there was one good thing to come out of tonight: I saw a commercial for the Rock Em Sock Em silver anniversary collection. All 25 of them in one pack. Sold!

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