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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#51 oh yeah
December 22 2013, 01:09AM
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6 ring circus wrote:

I think it would be a great gesture on Katz to refund season ticket holders money back , if the Oilers don't make the playoffs next year!!! At least he would know how the season ticket holders have been feeling these past 8 years ,supporting this team and having nothing to show for it, except for financial losses.

yup...hold your breath for that one...

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#52 Danger Pay
December 22 2013, 01:38AM
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I hate to say it, but thank you to who ever threw Your Jersey on the ice!

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#53 reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)
December 22 2013, 02:26AM
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Greg the Hammer Valentine wrote:

Remember in The Godfather, that scene when Michael Corleone negociates with Moe Green for the casino? It ends with the famous "don't ever take sides with someone against the family" line. During that scene, Fredo Corleone has a very particular look on his face. It's a mix of anger, fear and utter stupidity. That's the stare! The Dallas Eakins stare! I knew I had seen it before, I just couldn't remember from where. Look it up on You tube.

Bravo!!! Awesomness

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#54 Rheal1
December 22 2013, 06:45AM
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In my humble opinion this is more or less a "moral victory". 6-0 not bad for the Oilers. Since we have 4 high 1st round picks on Hall, Yaks, the Nuge and Eberle, not bad at all for the kids, right? I was ridiculed whenever I stated that the problem was with the assistant coaches all the time. Since many fans here can't see that I will bury my head in the sand along with you all. Once again, this game was a marginal moral victory. Great all around effort, very indicative of our Oilers. Eakins hiring was a mistake, clearly. The poor guy is way, way above his head. The players dont buy into his system. The assistant coaches all suck. This organization is a friggin' mess. From the coaching staff to the upper management. "There’s one other guy I believe in hockey today who’s still working in the game that has won more Stanley Cups than me, so I think I know a little bit about winning, if there’s ever a concern.” Darryl Katz you are a loser.

Time to boycott merchandising, tix and ship all your jerseys, t-shirts, ball caps, etc to: Edmonton Oilers Hockey Club - Administration 11230 - 110 Street Edmonton, Alberta T5G 3H7

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#55 Arius Mumin
December 21 2013, 01:58PM
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Those lines are sooooooo sad, they're sucking the spirit out of me as I type this.

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#56 tileguy
December 21 2013, 01:59PM
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94-27-57 is the second scoring line, yikes! or is it 6-51-83? double yikes!!

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#57 Walter Sobchak
December 21 2013, 02:11PM
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From the Edmonton journal

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8DIFeOkD_dc

Boy, that say's a lot.

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#59 Johnnydapunk
December 21 2013, 03:28PM
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Dog Train wrote:

That Gazdic-Gagner-Yakupov line is going to get eaten alive. Yikes.

Hard to see us having a chance in this one but the Oilers tend to play their best when they should get blown out on paper. I'll say 2-0 Blues. The players will have fun though and that's the most important thing.

Mind you I'm sure they said the same in the 80s when Slats put out the line of Gretzky Kurri and Semenko and Gretz ended up having his highest scoring seasons those 3 years if I am not mistaken :-p

I'm not in any way suggesting that Gags and Yak are anywhere near the gods that were Gretz and Kurri, but the idea of putting a fighter with a couple of "scorers" is not that far fetched. In a perfect world that allows both Yak and Gags to play without a worry of having to deal with any sh*t as Gazdic (who I think has been a sleeper surprise find for the Oil) can punch faces with the best of them.

The reality is that most of my hope was gone long ago and the Oil will poop the bed and lose like 2-1 or some score that is equally irritating.

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#60 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 21 2013, 03:29PM
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GDP: Game starts at 8:10 pm. Oilers show up at 9:15. Bryz stands on his head Oilers loose 3-0. Eakins finds the silver lining. Kids go out for pizza and pus*y after the game.

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#61 RexHolez
December 21 2013, 03:35PM
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I'm sorry you got traded to such a crappy team Perron. It must really suck

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#62 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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#63 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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#64 OILERSORDEATH
December 21 2013, 06:59PM
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Rheal1 wrote:

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.

Lol! So glad whifcoff is gone, plus he really isn't doing squat in Dallas. Good riddins!!

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#65 DonDon
December 21 2013, 07:42PM
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Czar wrote:

After the Perron trade no one in the Blues organization is taking calls from MacT.

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.

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#66 Jay
December 21 2013, 08:06PM
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New page meow?

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#67 Alsker
December 21 2013, 08:25PM
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Cheap penalty, don't mind the rule when a guy acually fires it over the glass but a one handed poke and it goes straight up.

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#68 @Oilanderp
December 21 2013, 08:57PM
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@Ari Gold

That's the thing... Oil outshooting STL 14-5 in the first. They're playing great! You can bet STL is going to push back in the second.

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#69 Naky
December 21 2013, 09:14PM
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Oh cripes. A powerplay. Run for the hills!

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#70 Reg Dunlop
December 21 2013, 09:15PM
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Holy smokes, I hate to harp on this but Backes keeps running around and the oil refuse to answer the bell. Standing up for your teammates is part of the game. Someone PLEASE give him a token facewash.

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#71 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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#72 Robfra50
December 21 2013, 10:14PM
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@Jay

Halllsy will be needing Jack Daniels after this game is over.

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#73 Hockey fan 1976
December 21 2013, 10:25PM
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KBlow was on his cell phone texting " all good Katzy, arena was sold out, men these and are suckers eh? What you want for Christmas anyways?"

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#74 FireKLowe
December 21 2013, 10:26PM
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How is it that the Oilers never went after a local guy like Ken Hitchcock? Oh wait, he's not a former Oiler ... Got it!

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#75 Taylor
December 21 2013, 10:32PM
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Enough already about STL on CBC , they are playing a AHL team they should dominate.

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#76 Dissapointed
December 21 2013, 10:36PM
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Done for real. My only interest in watching this team is to see how bad it can get. It's like watching Michael Bay destroy the Transformers franchise. Or the unraveling of Michael Jackson. What a purely pathetic display of ineptitude this has become. As a brainwashed 3 year old from '79-80 to now, I am calling it quits. Shame on you Lowe. Shame on you.

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#77 FireKLowe
December 21 2013, 10:36PM
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Can't wait to read how Willis and the other EJ homies try to put lipstick on this pig tomorrow. I'm sure they'll find a couple of positive stats to share.

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#78 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 10:45PM
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I broke down and bought tickets to the Oil/Jets game a few weeks ago. I literally feel like I betrayed the rest of the fan base by supporting this team.

Katz and Klowne's Stupendous Six Ring Circus. Hey Lowe, I think I have a question or two about winning for you.

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#79 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
December 21 2013, 10:50PM
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@Robert (AKA Hockey Fan)

I'm tempted to cheer for the damn Jets myself...

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#80 Johnnydapunk
December 21 2013, 11:17PM
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I wonder how many tweets they have to go through on after hours to find ones that can be read on the air? Could be why they are only going to twitter questions not as often as usual...

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#81 Serious Gord
December 22 2013, 12:02AM
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Rod from Viking wrote:

Don't always fully agree with you but your comment's on Ched were bang on, I hope Mac T is man enough to admit he F#*! up and correct his mistakes, this team has tuned out Eakins, a good start would be the assistant's shown the door, Mac T also made the comment that Eakin's could hire his own assistant's but hoped he wouldn't, that comment had Macro-management all over it.

Thanks.

Btw

If Hall really was a no-show on cbcs after hours that is a huge deal.

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#82 EP
December 22 2013, 12:14AM
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Smokey wrote:

Jersey on the ice should send a message loud and clear. Think its a sad message.

Clean house. Let's start the rebuild.

To a sports franchise, having jersey thrown on the ice should be equivalent to having the Canadian flag touching the ground. Unfortunately, management will shrug it off and do nothing about it. At least they're consistent.

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#83 **
December 22 2013, 12:18AM
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Merry Christmas and happy holidays to all. I need a break from this Oilers misery. Read you after boxing day. Maybe I'll get a deal on a new flat screen where I can watch in smooth detail how the Oilers get pummeled night in and night out.

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#84 @Oilanderp
December 22 2013, 12:29AM
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Or....they could get the players to backcheck, stop cheating for offence, shoot the puck, and keep doing these things even when not immediately rewarded for their behaviour.

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#85 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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#86 Quicksilver ballet
December 22 2013, 01:50AM
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Life is hell without a couple top pairing blueliners, and a decent 2nd line center.

This isn't the players problem, this just exposes a weak management group. Serious Gord hit the nail on the head when he mentioned the total arrogance in ownership and management. The losing culture starts right there.

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

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#88 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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#89 Spydyr
December 22 2013, 07:12AM
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I have one thing to say after reading all of these comments......GO TEAM CANADA!!!

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#90 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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#91 Serious Gord
December 22 2013, 08:07AM
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Ed in PV wrote:

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?

They are nowhere near the worst ever for one season. However since expansion in '68 the years since the cup run may be among the worst long term records ever.

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#92 Rdubb
December 22 2013, 08:39AM
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Johnathon I know it's the day after, but your PREDICATIONS haven't even been close this past 3 weeks plus... Someone, who is presumably around hockey & hockey teams as much as you are, should be a "little closer" in your predications...it isn't a reach to say the Oilers will loose these days, or even this year, but even I knew the Oilers would get hammered by more than 3 goals. The only way they wouldn't is if the top line put in a bunch of their chances...

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#93 Gk1980
December 22 2013, 09:39AM
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This team had died and given up. Do Eakins a favour and let him go. Mercy firing. He has a ton of potential and is getting dragged through the krap here. Of the 7 years this is as low as it has ever gotten. How did it get so bad? What the heck happened?

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#94 Chet134
December 22 2013, 10:12AM
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The oilers management has obviously throwing in the towel to this season. Don't be stupid and fix this mess. Let's suck again next year and draft Mcdavid. That's managements Christmas present to the fans

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#95 vetinari
December 21 2013, 01:58PM
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I read the first tweet that said "4-93-14" and thought that they were quoting our record...

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#96 tileguy
December 21 2013, 02:01PM
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vetinari wrote:

I read the first tweet that said "4-93-14" and thought that they were quoting our record...

Lol. I'm still going to watch the game though and look for moral victories.

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#97 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
December 21 2013, 02:07PM
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tileguy wrote:

Lol. I'm still going to watch the game though and look for moral victories.

I've downgraded even further....now just hoping for molar victories...where all our players finish the game with all their teeth.

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#98 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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#99 Rama Lama
December 21 2013, 03:04PM
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@reaperfunkss (2nd tier fan)

Very funny.......it seems that all the Oilers fans have to look forward to. A bunch of clowns running a sad circus is all we have left!

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#100 Slats
December 21 2013, 05:15PM
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Naky wrote:

Oilers better pray they don't get a powerplay this game. Also better hope they aren't a goal behind or tied with two minutes left to play either. Eakins is determined to make them lose with his man advantage and goalie management skills; they're going to have to foil his evil plots by making sure they score goals just to spite him!

I hope we put a "shut-down' dman on our PP . . .oh wait . . .I guess we go back to 5 forwards. Sad.

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