GDB 29.0: SHOW UP AT HOME

Jason Gregor
December 03 2013 01:24PM

Home ice advantage has been a mirage for the Edmonton Oilers so far this season.

The Oilers are 3-8-0 at home this year. They've been outscored 38-23. They've allowed 3+ goals in 9 of the 11 home games and they've scored once or been shutout seven times. There is no other way to say it, they've been awful on home ice, and it's about time they start giving their fans something to cheer about.

In 2010, on their way to drafting Taylor Hall at least they were competitive at home, 18-19-4, and 9-28-4 on the road.
In 2011, they were pretty much the same team at home on and on the road; 13-22-6 at home and 12-23-6 on the road.
In 2012, they were 18-17-6 at home, and 14-23-4 on the road.

Last year, the Oilers won more games on the road than they did at home, 9-11-4 at home and 10-11-3 on the road.

There is no reason the Oilers should be this horrendous at Rexall Place, and it has to change. The games are still announced as sell outs, but I know some fans are wasting their tickets and not showing up. The Oilers must be aware of this.

When that many fans elect to just "waste" their tickets, Oilers management better take notice. This happened in the early 90s, and once the team wasn't competitive, 1993-1996, the fans stopped buying tickets. The Oilers shouldn't be naive enough to believe that couldn't happen again.

Fans have been incredibly loyal and patient, but if the Oilers don't start winning some home games soon, I sense we could see even more empty seats as the season progresses.

LINEUP

Hall-RNH-Eberle
Perron-Arcobello-Yakupov
Jones-Gagner-Hemsky
Smyth-Acton-Joensuu

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

Dubnyk

Ryan Jones has played with desperation since coming out of the pressbox, and Eakins rewarded him by bumping him up the lineup. Eakins moved Yakupov back to the right wing, and put Perron on the right side with him and Arcobello in hopes of creating two scoring lines.

I'm curious to see if Eakins starts to try and get better matchups at home. Will he try to give "softer" minutes to Arcobello's line so they can produce offence, or will he do that with the Gagner trio?

Joensuu has to play with the same passion and determination that Jones did to earn a promotion. I think Joensuu has more to offer, and he needs to start showing it.

TUESDAY TIDBITS...

  • It will be back next week, but this week we incorporated into the GDB.
     
  • Ray Ferraro had an interesting take on my show regarding Taylor Hall, when I asked him what change Hall should make in his game that would help him become a more dominant player.
    I think there is one thing he could do that would elevate his game and he could do it quickly. If he would learn, or accept, that he is not the best option on the ice all the time, I think that could help him a great deal.

    I will give you an example. When he gets the puck, and when he gets moving, if he would give it up a little quicker and separate, because no one is going to catch him, and then get it back; that small change to his game would change his game immensely. He loves to lug the puck. At times he looks like a punt returner. He gets it in his zone and is going to go as far as he can with it, and he can because he's that talented.

    I think if he takes a couple of strides and moves it to a centreman -- and obviously in Edmonton he is playing with talented players so the puck will come back to him --now he is moving again. If he moves it to the middle the defenceman has to take a step to the middle, because he has to defend the centreman, and that will give Taylor another five feet when he gets the puck back. Now the D-man has to cross over and come back, and I like Hall's chances better if he has that much more room to skate, than if he was just lugging the puck all the time.

    I think it is a small change, and if he can get his head around it and try it, he would find that he is going to get more room on the ice than he already creates with his speed.
     
  • Ferraro knows a thing or two about creating offensive chances. Ferraro is currently the 99th highest scoring player in NHL history. Ferraro admitted it isn't easy for players to make sudden changes to their game, and while he said it was small, it would take some time to adapt properly. Hall has carried the puck his entire career, and he's had success with it, so any change is tough, but it makes a lot of sense. Hall's speed already scares D-men, and if he gain a quarter or a half of a step advantage he could be even more dangerous.
     
  • Sidney Crosby will play his 499th game tonight, and he'll play his 500th game vs. the Sharks on Thursday. Crosby already has 701 points in 498 games and whatever points his picks up in the next 72 hours will put leave him with the 6th most points in NHL history through 500 games.

    Wayne Gretzky is first with 1,186.
    Mario Lemieux tallied 971.
    Peter Stastny had 759.
    Mike Bossy scored 757.
    Jari Kurri is 5th with 730.

    Crosby will join a very elite crew, being only the 6th player in NHL history to score 700+ points in his first 500 games.
     
  • In case you are wondering, Alex Ovechkin had 643 points in his first 500 games, including 309 goals.
     
  • The Penguins ability to throw out two dominant centres makes life much easier for head coach Dan Bylsma. While Crosby had a "slow" month, picking up 15 points in 15 games, Evgeni Malkin was on fire with 25 points in 15 games. After a slow start Malkin is now 2nd in league scoring, 35 points, and he's only one back of Crosby.
     
  • I was perplexed in the summer when some people didn't have Corey Perry on the Olympic team. He was great in 2010, and I don't think his foot speed is an issue. He and Ryan Getzlaf are off to a great start, with 29 and 31 points respectively. For me, both of them are locks to make the squad.
     
  • I wonder if the St. Louis Blues are concerned about how they match up vs. the Sharks and Kings. The Sharks have beat them 6-2 and 6-3 this year, while the Kings dominated the Blues for 55 minutes last night, before two late goals made the 3-2 final look more respectable.
     
  • The Blues need a pure finisher, and Marian Gaborik is a UFA at the end of the season. The Blue Jackets likely won't re-sign him, and he would fit perfect in St. Louis. Gaborik won't lead your team to the Cup, but he could be an excellent complementary player in their top-six. With David Backes and Alex Steen down the middle, the Blues don't need a defensively responsible scorer. They need a finisher. The Blues have about $2 million in cap space at the deadline, and if they are willing to spend it, they could fit Gaborik under the cap, by moving out a small salary.
     
  • The Coyotes have scored the 5th most goals in the western conference, but only Calgary and the Oilers have given up more goals. Mike Smith has a .307 GAA and a respectable .910 SV%. He hasn't played as well as they would like, but the Coyotes are giving up way too many shots. The Coyotes, 34.5, are giving up four more shots against than the Oilers, 30.5.
     
  • Dave Tippett's Coyotes aren't playing as defensively as they have in the past.

TONIGHT...

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Coyotes have lost four of their last five, and they've given up 4 goals in each loss. The Oilers finally give their fans something to cheer about as defeat a playoff team for only the 2nd time this season. Oilers win 4-1.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Hemsky picks up a point. He has 34 points in 33 career games vs. the Coyotes.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Justin Schultz becomes the first Oiler D-man to score two goals in a game since Corey Potter did it late last season. After reading the previous sentence, many of you are stunned that Potter was the last Oiler D-man to score two goals in a game. I was too. Entering tonight the six blueliners have played a combined 2,118 NHL games, and Andrew Ference is the only one to have a multi-goal game. He scored twice on January 5th, 2004. J.Schultz' two goals will indeed be a rare occurrence.

DAY FOUR...MONTH OF GIVING...

Yesterday we raised another $2,500 for Santas Anonymous. Thanks to Ken for the bid and especially to Robert for re-donating the Messier jersey.
 

It includes:

You can bid by calling 780.444.1260 or 1.800.243.1945. All the proceeds will go to the Christmas Bureau. Thanks in advance to all of those who make a bid.

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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#301 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:40PM
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#302 Mike Krushelnyski
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#303 Mike Krushelnyski
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#304 Mike Krushelnyski
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#305 Mike Krushelnyski
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#306 Mike Krushelnyski
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#307 Mike Krushelnyski
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#308 Mike Krushelnyski
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#309 Mike Krushelnyski
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#310 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:40PM
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#311 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:40PM
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#312 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:40PM
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#313 Death Metal Nightmare
December 04 2013, 10:12AM
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funny how out of that list, Paul Stastny gets the least respect or talk but is sitting in third place and probably will forever. everyone else on that list gets a verbal BJ non-stop.

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#314 Danger Pay
December 04 2013, 10:12AM
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Dubnyk = http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AM-7Ts-3wmY

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#315 Ed in Edmonton
December 04 2013, 10:50AM
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Clarko wrote:

Hall & Eberle may not be perfect, but Hall has 123 points in his last 128 games. And Eberle has 136 points in his last 155 games. The stats say that these guys give NHL defensemen at least a little bit to worry about.

They both need to be more consistent, but trading your two most offensively gifted players on an offensively-challenged team would be a big mistake.

Unfortunately the Oil are also challenged in many other areas. There is a perception that the Oil have a number of players who have scoring ability. This perception and a high draft pick next year are the only items of value the Oil have which they might be able to leverage to address some of their weaknesses. IMO it is not if, but when will they turn their perceived strengths into assets that will address their weaknesses.

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#316 Johnnydapunk
December 04 2013, 01:47PM
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Oilerz4life wrote:

There is a bunch of griping over the whole new Rogers deal that is going to be in place soon. I might be wrong, but it seems like the coverage will actually be better. No blackouts, more games, more Canadian games covered, etc. There is complaining over the talking head shows etc, but I would like to point out that if you can actually watch more NHL hockey what do you care about the cheeze bits in between?

Also, cable deals are going to be changing soon, where you no longer have to purchase package deals for a bunch of channels you don't watch, so if you can pay a smaller amount, for a channel that is going to cover all the hockey you want, then what gives? If you don't want to watch it or pay for it, then don't, its that simple. Also, because it will be Rogers place the new arena will be really tech savy, so that should give all you old farts something else to cry about.

I may be wrong, but it seems that that is the direction things are going. Here come the trash its. No big deal.

What Rogers has done has kind of worked from a business perspective as it is very similar to what happened in the 90s with Football and Sky cable paying a stupid amount to win the rights to broadcasting the Premier League in the UK and Ireland. The result was that if you wanted to watch the football, it had to be through sky and the former broadcaster (BBC) was left with showing non league and international matches, which is a similar position to what TSN will be in.

As for what will happen to the new arena regarding technology and whatnot, it would depend not the specifics of the contract that Rogers agreed with Katz and the Oilers and what rights they have with the building regarding the communications infrastructure of the new arena. The new building will most likely be quite advanced on that front regardless, as it is new.

The deal only covers the Canadian market so I don't think the prices will drop at all, though your TV packages will become more "streamlined" as they would say, so you would have to push your change channel button on your remote fewer times to find what you want I guess.

You had mentioned in one of your responses that it is bigger than just Edmonton or Alberta or even Canada, but Rogers only exists in Canada currently so unless they are sprucing themselves up for a merger all Telefonica/O2 like, I don't think they are too worried about the international market as of yet. But who knows.

It will be interesting to see what happens in the next few years and the direction the NHL and even Rogers take.

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#317 Oilerz4life
December 04 2013, 02:26PM
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Johnnydapunk wrote:

What Rogers has done has kind of worked from a business perspective as it is very similar to what happened in the 90s with Football and Sky cable paying a stupid amount to win the rights to broadcasting the Premier League in the UK and Ireland. The result was that if you wanted to watch the football, it had to be through sky and the former broadcaster (BBC) was left with showing non league and international matches, which is a similar position to what TSN will be in.

As for what will happen to the new arena regarding technology and whatnot, it would depend not the specifics of the contract that Rogers agreed with Katz and the Oilers and what rights they have with the building regarding the communications infrastructure of the new arena. The new building will most likely be quite advanced on that front regardless, as it is new.

The deal only covers the Canadian market so I don't think the prices will drop at all, though your TV packages will become more "streamlined" as they would say, so you would have to push your change channel button on your remote fewer times to find what you want I guess.

You had mentioned in one of your responses that it is bigger than just Edmonton or Alberta or even Canada, but Rogers only exists in Canada currently so unless they are sprucing themselves up for a merger all Telefonica/O2 like, I don't think they are too worried about the international market as of yet. But who knows.

It will be interesting to see what happens in the next few years and the direction the NHL and even Rogers take.

Rogers is a Canadian company, is listed on the TSX and the New York Stock Exchange. The list of media outlets and communications providers that they have ownership in is quite extensive, but to say that they are limited to Canada falls a bit short lol.

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#318 admiralmark
December 04 2013, 02:37PM
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2016. Its clear that ole Rexall is cursed. Face the facts. Between the horrendous uncompetitive home games to the bizarre onslaught of weird and overwhelming injuries. This can only be cleansed by playing in a new arena. Maybe Oilers used up all their good luck in the 83-90?! Who's to say? But the evidence has piled up enough not to ignore. So 2016 it is. Until then.... rinse and repeat.

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#319 Wonger
December 04 2013, 02:44PM
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Why has Steve MacInyre only been dressed for 2 out of 4 games with OKC????? Check out Ben Eagers KO of an opposing enforcer on hockey fights two weeks ago- Benjamin can still go when the spirit moves him!!!!!

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#320 Johnnydapunk
December 04 2013, 03:52PM
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Oilerz4life wrote:

Rogers is a Canadian company, is listed on the TSX and the New York Stock Exchange. The list of media outlets and communications providers that they have ownership in is quite extensive, but to say that they are limited to Canada falls a bit short lol.

Where they are listed has very little to do with where the company has interests, it is more to do with when the company feels their stock will be traded the most, and being listed in the TSX and the NYSE fits Rogers well.

Saying all that, whilst Rogers is a big company with many aspects of business, their interests are only in Canada at the moment, they aren't anywhere near the size of a company like Telefonica, AT&T or even T-Mobile. They are not even in the top 30 biggest telecommunications companies worldwide. The advantage they have is that there is no competition in Canada so unless something drastically changes with CRTC laws or some multinational decides to go crazy full power and invest and insane amount to try to get what is a very small difficult market for telecoms(which can't happen under current CRTC laws) , they will continue to be the big fish in a pretty small pond.

Rogers has it very good right now, they don't need to be any bigger than Canada as they have most of the market and as Canada has a very small population relative to size, and quite restrictive laws regarding international telcos entering the Canada, they are sitting quite pretty at the moment.

So yeah, actually they are just limited to Canada in every way possible and saying that doesn't fall short by any means. They do not exist outside of Canada, they don't really need to either.

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#321 tileguy
December 04 2013, 04:56PM
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@Johnnydapunk

LOL, you should be in marketing.

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#322 Oilerz4life
December 04 2013, 06:54PM
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^We also care about the team. But the Rogers deal is big news and effects the Oilers. But we are not arguing, we are discussing lol. My friend here, believes that Rogers is limited to Canada. I was was under the impression that Rogers now owned 100% broadcast rights to the NHL, which brings in big profits from across the border (broadcasting US teams in the US or wherever). They also have ownership in FOX and a multitude of other media and broadcasting outlets. Whatever though you're right, it doesn't really matter, unless ofcourse you're investing.

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#323 nick
December 05 2013, 09:54AM
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Puck JammeR! wrote:

How many of those last 155 games did their team win?

We need to stop looking at any player as untouchable. This team is deeply and fundamentally broken.

Excellent post Clarko, this team is so fundamentally broken it is irrepairable. Here is the biggest problem with the Oilers, the main guys and I do not include Hall in this comment only care about their points. Perron, Eberle, Gagner look at it as I got my points so I must have done good. Instead the thought process has to be if we win the game then if I contributed awesome if not we still won. It is a "ME" first attitude on the Oiler team and that is a true fact.

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#324 The Last Big Bear
December 05 2013, 11:43AM
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Joe Mamma wrote:

Why the hell is a flames fan even on the ON site? Really, you just sit around reading Oilers articles and commentary?

I would rather eat a pound of broken glass and wash it down with three liters of iodine than be caught dead on a flamers blog.

Have some self-respect man.

Because I like to talk about hockey? I visit all the Nations' sites. I'm one of about 3 guys who comments on the Jets' page.

And ON has the most content, and the most active discussion threads.

But feel free to hate on me. I'm a Flames fan on an Oilers' website, and although I usually try to make a valid contribution, i also always try to get a dig in against your favourite hockey team. So I expect nothing less.

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#325 Spydyr
December 03 2013, 06:03PM
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Alsker wrote:

Perron-Arco-Yak, so his coach is doing his part, now it's up to Yak. Doubt disney could conjure the magic needed for Gags to up his game, ~damn glad he's here for the next phase of the infibuild~

The sites acting up.One click two posts

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#326 D-Unit
December 03 2013, 06:57PM
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Spydyr wrote:

The reason Yak looks lost is not his linemates.It is how his coach teaches Yak his system and teaches what is expected of him within it.

Coaching is more then picking lines the biggest part is teaching.

I agree coaching is a lot about teaching. Though I am not sure how you know how the coach is trying to teach Yak. Further to that though, from an outsiders perspective it looks like Oilers coaches have been trying to teach players who don't want to, or refuse to learn.

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#327 Gk1980
December 03 2013, 09:41PM
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What's going on? Are the oilers really that bad? No push or drive. They are so bad in there own end. This team needs to have a huge kick in the butt. Is it the water? A conspiracy? What gives?

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#328 LOIL
December 03 2013, 09:49PM
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Petry and Gilbert are junk

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#329 LOIL
December 03 2013, 09:49PM
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Petry and Gilbert are junk

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#330 LOIL
December 03 2013, 09:49PM
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Petry and Gilbert are junk

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#331 bulldog12
December 03 2013, 10:24PM
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Wow We wonder why it looks like men against boys That's what it is Its going to a long winter

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#332 11-2-99
December 03 2013, 10:46PM
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Trying to keep it LOIL in the YYC, the father in law is loving it!

Dubnyk and Petry at least give the sports select a chance!

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#333 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#334 Mike Krushelnyski
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#335 Mike Krushelnyski
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#336 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#337 Mike Krushelnyski
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#338 Mike Krushelnyski
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#339 Mike Krushelnyski
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#340 Mike Krushelnyski
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#341 Mike Krushelnyski
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#342 Mike Krushelnyski
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#343 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#344 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#345 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#346 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#347 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#348 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#349 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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#350 Mike Krushelnyski
December 03 2013, 11:38PM
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