GDB 10.0: THE SWITCH

Jason Gregor
February 06 2013 01:15PM

Yesterday Ralph Krueger suggested he is contemplating making a switch amongst his top two lines for tonight's tilt v. Dallas.

Which move makes more sense? Turns out it wasn't what many were thinking.

Will he move Sam Gagner between Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle, and slide Ryan Nugent-Hopkins between Nail Yakupov and Ales Hemsky, or will he stay with the duos he liked at the start of the season, Eberle with RNH, Gagner with Hemsky and swap Yakupov and Hall?

I think both moves would have merit.

The Hall/Gagner/Eberle trio had success last year, most notably Gagner's 8-point night against Chicago. Hall and Hemsky are the two best forwards right now at backing off the defenders on the rush, so keeping them on separate lines makes sense.

Right now Nugent-Hopkins has shown he is better defensively than Gagner. While RNH isn't producing like Gagner, 9-game point streak, he has shown remarkable improvement with his defensive zone coverage. If you put RNH between Yakupov and Hemsky, they likely won't be eaten up 5-on-5 like the 64/89/83 trio was.

Also, putting RNH with the Yakupov, who has been the best shooter early on, could lead to more offensive chances. The great news for Krueger is that he's the first Oiler coach in a decade who has six legitimate offensive players that he can rotate through his top-two lines.

Krueger could also throw Yakupov with RNH and Eberle, and give them better matchups, while putting Hall with Gagner and Hemsky and give them the harder minutes. Hemsky has faced the top defenders for most of his career, so he's used to it, and right now Hall's overall speed and strength make him the hardest to defend amongst the young kids.

SCRATCH THAT

Nugent-Hopkins will not play tonight. There will be some switching of lines and positions, but it will involve Mark Arcobello and Ryan Smyth.

Arcobello will have one of the best opportunities any player has had for his first NHL game. He'll play between Hall and Eberle, while Smyth will move to centre with Lennart Petrell and Darcy Hordichuk on his wings.

RNH is listed as day-to-day, and according to Krueger if this was a playoff game he'd be playing. Krueger said they expect him to play Saturday in Detroit. His shoulder is bothering him, not sure which one, but after a hard hit in OT v. Vancouver the Oilers have elected to rest him.

LINE UP

Hall/Arcobello/Eberle
Yakupov/Gagner/Hemsk
Paajarvi/Lander/Hartikainen
Hordichuk/Smyth/Petrell

Smid/Petry
N.Schultz/J.Schultz
Whitney/Potter

Dubnyk
 

The Stars roll into Rexall looking very different than last year. They have lots of new faces, young and old, and it will be interesting to see how they and the Oilers match up.

Morrow/Benn/Jagr
Ryder/Roy/Eriksson
Vincour/Eakin/Smith
Roussel/Fiddler/Nystrom

Robidas/Dillon
Daley/Rome
Oleksiuk/Larsen

Lehtonen

Alex Goligoski is a healthy scratch. He hasn't played as well as the coaches would like, so he'll take a seat upstairs.

QUICK HITS

  • Devan Dubnyk is tied for 7th in SV%, .925%, with goalies who have started at least five games. He has faced the most shots in the NHL at 295, and along with Jimmy Howard, Mikka Kiprusoff and Jonathan Quick they are the only goalies to have started every game for their team.
     
  • The Oilers are 30th in shots against. They are allowing 34.4 per game. They are 24th in shots for with 27.4/game, which ranks them 29th in SF/SA ratio at a woeful -7.
     
  • The positive for tonight is that the Stars are 30th in SF/SA ratio at an awful -9.2. The Stars are only averaging 24.6 shot per game while allowing 33.8.
     
  • Smyth, Petrell, Lander, Gagner and Paajarvi will rotate on the penalty kill.
     
  • Yakupov tweeted out a pretty neat picture of him and Jaromir Jagr. "Nail10_1993 : That was 2004 -Jagr played in Russia , in Lockout time . And it's me 11 years old Boy :) Good eh ?)))) "
  • Yakupov is excited to play one of his idols tonight.
     
  • Krueger wouldn't say for sure who would be on his first powerplay unit, but you will likely see Arcobello slide in to Nugent-Hopkins spot. I'd look at putting Ryan Smyth on the first unit in place of Shawn Horcoff, because they need to try and win the faceoff and he is good in front of the net.
     
  • The Stars have been shorthanded a league-high 50 times this year. They were preaching discipline this morning, and admitted they are leery of the Oilers powerplay. The Oilers are 2nd in PP goals, 12, and 3rd in PP% at 28.6. The Stars PK is solid at 11th, but their PP only has 4 goals on 33 chances and sit 27th at 12.1%.
     
  • Hall fought Roussel in the minors this year, and Stars analyst Darryl Reaugh called him mini-Pepe today, a Claude Lemieux reference. Roussel is great at getting under people's skin, and isn't afraid to drop the gloves to protect himself. Look for him to try and fire up the Oilers tonight.

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers are without three centres, and since most expect them to lose tonight, they will do the opposite and win, 3-2.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers will struggle in the faceoff dot, and Smyth will have the best percentage.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Early in the 2nd period, Arcobello will saucer a cross-ice pass to Eberle who scores his first goal in five games. Right after he scores Roussel will give him a cheap shot in the back. Arcobello skates in and jumps Roussel. They drop the gloves and Arcobello takes a few heavy shots. While sitting in the penalty box, they announce the goal and Arcobello's assist and the big screen shows Arcobello in the sin bin, nose leaking with a huge grin. The crowd loves it and gives Arcobello a standing ovation. 

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

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One of Canada's most versatile sports personalities. Jason hosts The Jason Gregor Show, weekdays from 2 to 6 p.m., on TSN 1260, and he writes a column every Monday in the Edmonton Journal. You can follow him on Twitter at twitter.com/JasonGregor
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#51 Quicksilver ballet
February 06 2013, 03:07PM
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@The 'Real' Ron Burgundy

Not every kid selected is going to pan out. There's likely to be a future support player in this bunch, don't you think?

All three of the past entry drafts the Oilers have went hard after netting more than one of these lottery kids. Seguin and Hall in 2010. Hopkins and Larsson in 2011, and this past summer they went hard after both Ryan Murray and Alex Galchenyuk. Desperate times call for desperate measures.

Less than 50/50, the player selected first ends up being the best player in that draft class.Hall and Hopkins arrows seem to be pointing sideways rather than up this season, don't you think?

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#52 Matt Henderson
February 06 2013, 03:13PM
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@The 'Real' Ron Burgundy

LOL.

I hear you. Honestly I think the Oilers will be fine in the sense that their core is pushing them forward. They are trending up (hard to be worse than the past 3 years) and if Whitney is replaced with a legit top 3 Defenseman the Oilers will be in really good position.

I dont think they will be a Columbus/Florida type team because those guys whiffed on their top players or never took them in bunches. The Oilers are too skilled to be bottom feeders forever, but you are right. They wont be cup contenders without legit NHL players throughout their lineup.

If Nuge wasnt hurt there would still be 7 players who played on the Barons, 1 Rookie from russia, and a Goalie in his 1st year as the starter. That is a lot of inexperience. Those same guys 2-3 years from now have a chance to dominate though. Until then if all of them are playing in the NHL we have to assume there will be issues.

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#53 Reg Dunlop
February 06 2013, 03:53PM
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The old lady guarantees an oiler win tonite and her voodoo is strong. She says they will try harder to prove themselves.

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#54 Guy Lafleur
February 06 2013, 03:54PM
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I think the Nuge is gonna be a band aid .

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#55 MAC962
February 06 2013, 04:22PM
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First game with real adversity. We all hope Acro does well and my guy tells me he will be fine.

Oil show lots of intensity, and you know Dallas smells Blood.

Nordic line pots 2, Hall and Hemmer with singles in 4-2 Oil Win.

Speed once again boys. Dallas is not the swiftest team.

Whitney 2 assists and a scrap.

Come on big man , we need you.

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#56 Phixieus666
February 06 2013, 04:25PM
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@MAC962

Anybody have any idea what kind of speed this guys has?

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#57 rama lama
February 06 2013, 04:26PM
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The plan all along is to finish last draft first........nothing has changed.

Then when we get to the podium.....Tamby will select the smallest fastest player he can find.

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#58 Sanaa Montana
February 06 2013, 04:39PM
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IT HAS BEGUN.!..

Oilers lose 5-2. Goals by Yakupov and Whitney.

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#59 The 'Real' Ron Burgundy
February 06 2013, 04:49PM
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Phixieus666 wrote:

If we somehow have the 1st pick again this year, I keep the pick, take McKinnon and trade one of the other guys for the players we need. There is no way you can take a pass on McKinnon and I don't think any team would offer enough to trade that pick away.

Aren't you a little tired of the same old song n' dance on repeat.

The same things were said about Hall in 2010; Nuge in 2011; and Yakupov in 2012

What are we going to say the year after that? Can't pass up on McDavid, man he's gonna change this team around.

Were proving that high draft picks are not the only answer, quality serviceable NHL players are needed to surround those picks 'cause they cannot do it alone.

@ Time Travelling Sean

My words may seem like I feel the sky is falling, but I really don't. Other than the Calgary game, I'm quite happy with their play thus far. Its management's lack of managing that has us in a situation where it could very well fall.

This team needs to have a very good record over the next 8 games, as 6 are at home...and then the dreaded Brier Road trip begins which will be hell, let alone if we struggle for the rest of February.

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#60 Phixieus666
February 06 2013, 04:49PM
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Sanaa Montana wrote:

In Canada, possession of amphetamines is a criminal offence under Schedule I of the Controlled Drugs and Substances Act, with a maximum penalty for repeat offenders of fines of up to $2,000, imprisonment for up to one year, or both.

So hes slow? Gagner slow or Hordi slow? or is he taking slomo

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#61 Mac962
February 06 2013, 04:49PM
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Phixieus666 wrote:

Anybody have any idea what kind of speed this guys has?

Speed is NHL Caliber, I was at a game in OKC this year and he was the best player on the ice.

Measure his heart , not his height. Look at the dwarf on Buffalo, who wouldn't want him ? Not saying he is that talented, but there have been many small guys make it big. The unfortunate part is Our Oilers have too many smaller players.

My guess is we will be pleasantly surprised as will Ralphy, well maybe not him , he knows what Acro brings thats why he called him up to the Show.

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#62 tileguy
February 06 2013, 04:52PM
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NSOGDP With the teeny boppers dancing in the aisles to Beyonce, the lights will go out. Hordichuk will sneak over to the Dallas bench looking to ambush Ott.

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#63 Sanaa Montana
February 06 2013, 04:53PM
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Phixieus666 wrote:

So hes slow? Gagner slow or Hordi slow? or is he taking slomo

No, No, he's August Musger slow. X3

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#64 Sailge
February 06 2013, 04:53PM
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Time Travelling Sean wrote:

For everyone saying the sky is falling, we are still in a playoff spot, and we have a winning record.

What was that stat? All teams last year in a playoff spot through the first 10 games made the playoffs? You'd think that would be better for us during a shortened season.

Some may say it is unsustainable, to be continuously out shot and outplayed 5v5 and still win, but if Florida can do it, so can we.

Oilers were 8-2-2 outta the gate last year. We definitely didn't make it.

Here's hoping it's gonna be one of those games where we are so depleted, we are expected to lose but somehow come out with a win.

Go Oil!

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#65 Phixieus666
February 06 2013, 04:55PM
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Mac962 wrote:

Speed is NHL Caliber, I was at a game in OKC this year and he was the best player on the ice.

Measure his heart , not his height. Look at the dwarf on Buffalo, who wouldn't want him ? Not saying he is that talented, but there have been many small guys make it big. The unfortunate part is Our Oilers have too many smaller players.

My guess is we will be pleasantly surprised as will Ralphy, well maybe not him , he knows what Acro brings thats why he called him up to the Show.

Ya didn't he try checking a 6'5" guy in the minors. First time he just bounced off and then second time he took the big man out??? That's the kind of player this team needs. May be small but plays big.

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#66 Dog Train
February 06 2013, 04:57PM
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One man's adversity is another's opportunity. Arcobello could not have scripted a much better chance than he will get by playing on the first line tonight. I know I'm not alone in saying that I hope he makes the most of it.

Obviously, we are really thin in the middle right now but I actually think that Smyth could benefit from a move to C on a more permanent basis. He has already been taking a few faceoffs pretty much every game and doing alright. He is solid defensively and I would rather see him move the puck to other, quicker players and crashing the net for rebounds. The last few games Smyth has had some room down the wing but he doesn't have the speed or the shot to provide any threat whatsoever.

I think the Oilers will surprise tonight and win despite their banged up lineup. 2-1 Oilers, goals by Eberle and Hemsky. Arcobello with an assist. GO OILERS GO!!

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#68 Eulers
February 06 2013, 05:18PM
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Step right up and see your Edmonton Oilers! Now, without centermen!

Who needs centermen to win a game?

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#70 Alan
February 06 2013, 06:26PM
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Read something similar about the line ups

http://talkingchimp.wordpress.com/2013/02/07/edmonton-oilers-a-failing-franchise/

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#71 John Chambers
February 06 2013, 06:34PM
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Matt Henderson wrote:

I completely agree, but I'm not sure if this is that year or if a serious run at winning would be better suited for next year.

Yak wont be a rookie, some bigger contracts come off the books (others kick in), Dubnyk is more established, etc.

I think they want to see what this team can do largely as it is and then make the necessary changes in the summer. That's what I would do, anyway.

& @ Ron Burgundy

The Hot a stove was talking about Steve Weiss and I thought about how adding a player like that would be a huge problem-solver for the Oil. They could buy out Horcoff's contract this summer and run Nuge, Gags, and Weiss as your 3 C's.

But I agree with you guys that '13 is a season for improvement, while '13-'14 they need to go for it. Ie, adding a player like Weiss or a top Dman should be done through free agency without costing an asset, as opposed to dealing our 1st rounder and an up and comer on a good contract like Paajarvi just to hopefully finish in8th.

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#72 StHenriOilBomb
February 06 2013, 06:39PM
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Jason Gregor wrote:

It was a typo...27.4 shots/game...They are -7

cool. I thought I was missing something.

And lordie we have a chance!

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#73 vetinari
February 06 2013, 06:50PM
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Well, now we see what kind of depth OKC can give us... I wonder if Tambi will cash in a defnceman (Peckham or Plante) for maybe a depth centre to get us through?

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#74 Dave Lumley
February 06 2013, 07:21PM
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vetinari wrote:

Well, now we see what kind of depth OKC can give us... I wonder if Tambi will cash in a defnceman (Peckham or Plante) for maybe a depth centre to get us through?

Then later we can trade the depth centre for a depth D-man. Or we can just bring up a Baron for a "cupa". Steady as she goes in my opinion, that's part of development, giving these Barons a look see at the big league.

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#75 james_dean
February 06 2013, 07:57PM
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Yakupov == Beauty

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#76 Darrell
February 06 2013, 08:35PM
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justDOit wrote:

There is no justification for personal attacks. Period.

I Agree and have had his back too many times ....

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#77 Yes !
February 06 2013, 08:38PM
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No Chris Cuthbert - fantastic.

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#78 Shane
February 06 2013, 10:03PM
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So another center down? What was that about voodoo....?

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#79 Stack Pad Save
February 06 2013, 10:06PM
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Can they get rid of Potter? Any other defenseman would be an improvement. The guy makes the worst give aways. He makes me remember good things about Grebeshkov.

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#80 Walter Sobchak
February 06 2013, 10:20PM
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The 'Real' Ron Burgundy wrote:

How many 1st round picks do we need, is our entire top six former first rounders, and three of them were the first name to be called?

Skill is not the issue anymore, functional size and serviceable depth are.

Unless the goal is just jersey sales, but sooner or later winning needs to be the only priority.

Sorry, but this is going to sting a bit.

This years draft is loaded with elite center's, the kind that dont come around very often.

I understand you as a fan wanting to win but what did you expect? to go from 29th to the playoffs? completly unrealistic.

The Oilers need a lot more skill, the need it in the bottom six, they need it in the top six.

How do you prepose you get that skill?

Players like Gagner, Petry,and Hemsky will help to get that skill, since you can only draft one elite player, then you draft and move.

this year the Oilers can draft there center and move one of those players mentioned for need.

with Klefbom showing up next year good chance a player like Petry can also be used.

the Oilers need a lot of skill.

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#81 Dog Train
February 06 2013, 11:00PM
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That sit in the press box sure did Whitney a lot of good. He looks as slow and lethargic as he has all season. Lots of try in this year's squad but the game is a lot tougher when you don't have the puck. Taylor Hall seemed to be the only guy who could win a faceoff out there.

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#82 DSF
February 06 2013, 11:00PM
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@Clyde Frog

Jaromirrrrrrrrrr

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#83 Shaun Doe
February 06 2013, 11:03PM
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Someone needs to teach these guys how to clear the zone. I miss the days of Staios bouncing it off the glass and out. At least it made it over the blueline.

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#84 Czar
February 06 2013, 11:07PM
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Yammy Jagr is a Fun Sponge!

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#85 Mac962
February 06 2013, 11:14PM
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Tough one, But we need to look at- No Horcoff- No Fistric- No Jones No Eager- No Belanger-Lost Lander, I have to believe somewhere in there, we win this game if these gents are in the lineup. No Lander probably would not be, but i am sure Jones would have 2-3 goals [maybe] by now and one of them cold have equated to a victory.. I dunno.

Whitney- Wow, thats all i can say.

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#86 Smokey
February 06 2013, 11:17PM
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I felt bad about the Whitney benching, but I'd would be mad if they don't sit him next game. Hell, Bobby Baun on a broken leg could of defended that. Jagr is a world class player, but at times but he's slow. Ryan was beat to spot by a 41 year old. He's to slow to get pucks, he's not physical enough to defend, and he can't keep up with and old man.

Whitney is this years Barker, he's costing games and points.

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#87 Quicksilver ballet
February 06 2013, 11:19PM
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Think that OT goal by Jagr is a good example of Dubnyk getting tired. Unobstructed view of the shooter/puck and he sits there, hoping the puck just hits him. His glovehand must've went to sleep on him on that opportunity. Zero wins in his last four starts.

Oilers must be paying a price for mouthing off at the refs. More often than not they're on the short end of breaks from the officials.

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#88 Rocket
February 06 2013, 11:35PM
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Walter Sobchak wrote:

I can't believe I'm going to say this but, I'm starting to feel really bad for Whitney, its got to be killing him inside.

I just can't get over how off his game is.

At the same time Krueger cant keep putting him out there.

He's a bloody train wreck.

This.

Also, I know it's completely obvious but Hall is a beast right now. Him & Hemsky are all over the ice & it's a good thing. Good thing they're at least healthy.

Half the team is injured; I mean what is this 2010?

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#89 Yep
February 07 2013, 12:08AM
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Trade Whit's before nobody wants him.

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#90 Slats
February 07 2013, 12:11AM
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Well another loss - 4 in a row.

Whitney - well documented already. He looks as bad as he did that first Vancouver game where the puck was in the corner and he couldn't turn the proper way to retrieve it. Cue Holmstrom retirement speech.

Hall was awesome - again. Could have done without the btw legs as I think he he would have scored on the backhand. But was best Oiler.

Arcobello - welcome to the NHL. Now you know why these guys do all that endurance training like they do! A step behind the play (sometimes 5 steps). A lot to ask of you and loss is not on your head.

Dubie - Agree he was getting fatigued. Most minutes in NHL and most shots! Cue Habi.

Upside??? Well until the Emergency Room gets emptied we are going to be lucky to keep getting these Loser points.

Help . . . .

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#91 Clarko
February 07 2013, 12:11AM
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Clarko wrote:

He has a .925 save percentage in his last four starts. I'm not sure you can ask more from your goalie getting you to OT three times in four games while getting badly outshot most nights.

The reason this team has zero wins in four games is because of the lack of scoring. Only 1.75 goals per game in the last four. Hardly Dubnyk's fault this team can't score right now.

Sorry, I meant a .932 save percentage...accidently counted the empty-net goal against Colorado.

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#92 Slats
February 07 2013, 12:16AM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

You're easily impressed. Anyone can see Taylor Hall is frustrated by the way this seasons started. He may have a few points but he's fighting the puck as well as trying to just stay on his feet. Taylor Hall himself i'm sure would admit he's not happy with the start to his season. How far off base do you feel i am on this?

All the Oilers forwards should consider wearing those clear foot/skate gaurds like Smid wears. Have to think they would've saved Belanger and Lander some grief.

I thnk you are correct. He knows that the Oil will be fighting between 7th and 14th and the point differential will be +/- 6 points. So every point counts. Right now I am sure he is saying we have given back at least 4 pts and he wants it to stop.

But given the injuries and line-up situation this team is in a world of hurt short term.

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#93 Peanut Sauce
February 07 2013, 12:21AM
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The bottom line is that the oil have won 4 and lost 6.

There is no top line. Hall and ebs can't finish and the Nuge has not been himself. Until the top line stops trying creative nice plays and starts taking the puck to the net the oilers will lose.

Arcobello was a failed experiment and Yak and MPS should not be out together in ot.

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#94 Quicksilver ballet
February 07 2013, 12:24AM
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Clarko wrote:

Sorry, I meant a .932 save percentage...accidently counted the empty-net goal against Colorado.

If we don't count the first period against the Sharks it was .951. That .020 difference could be attributed to being tired in the later stages of games. That .020 difference may have cost the club 2 or 3 points in the last week, no?

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#95 Walter Sobchak
February 07 2013, 12:49AM
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Quicksilver ballet wrote:

If we don't count the first period against the Sharks it was .951. That .020 difference could be attributed to being tired in the later stages of games. That .020 difference may have cost the club 2 or 3 points in the last week, no?

Brass tacks……. tired or not tired, the Oilers are not scoring enough for any goalie.

Would it make a difference if Khabibulin or Dubnyk were in net?

Scoring under two goals a game it wouldn't be.

By an inch or by a mile............really doesn’t matter.

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#96 Quicksilver ballet
February 07 2013, 01:01AM
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@Walter Sobchak

True that,

But after 10 games in 2 1/2 weeks i do see his effort tailing off in the later stages of games.

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#97 michael
February 07 2013, 06:46AM
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Butters wrote:

Yikes, the Oilers are looking lottery teamish right now.

The combination of the Oilers Hall and Eberle being snake bit in conjunction with all the centers on the IR is not making me very optimistic either at the moment.Just sayin. I do like that the team has not folded its tent and gone to ground. They are battling and eventually some of those chances have to go in. Ebs missed a golden opportunity last night.Hall the PS the game before.

The one factor that we all seem to discount is that the quality of the goaltending we have faced early on has been absolutely amazing. We are seeing across the league alot of low scoring games. Scotty bowman commented that you better make the most of your PP because 5 vs 5 there ain't going to be heck of alot of scoring. We are seeing that across the league.

Lander? bruise? Next? The beneficiary in all this is the guys down in OKC and Stockton and those guys looking for a PTO. The Oilers are on every agents speed dial right now.

When do the Oilers make a move for a center?

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#98 RussLyons
February 07 2013, 08:06AM
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how long until we sign Jason Arnott? He's still available right? At this point why not.

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#99 bdiddy18
February 07 2013, 08:44AM
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1 Regulation win in 10 games - that is the most telling stat... throw in all the arguments why blah blah blah...it is still only 1 regulation win in ten games at that is atrocious.

AND GOOD!

because another thing about a youth movement - is cockiness and they where filled to the rim in it all of them Hall, Nuge, Eberle after treating the AHL like every game was an all star game they tried to bring that to the big show.

look at every game - you will see extra passes, nifty dance moves, crazy shots and TURNOVERS like no one has ever seen.

Yakopov - is still on cloud 9 - big eyed and shell shocked that he is in the NHL that is understandable but also making blunders.

The only two young guys that have come in - punched in to work and punched out are Justin Shultz and Devan Dubnyk. Calm - settled and ready for the next game.

Yes losing centres suck and yes Ryan Whitney is absolutely struggling after reconstructive surgery on both his feet,

but even more the reason for everyone to keep it simple, put the puck in the corner, crash the net and score ugly.

So after 10 games - I hope thats enough for the young guns to get the wake up call and realize settle down - play hockey. Ultimate job is to win games not razzle dazzle for the oooohs and aaaahs.

Who is playing hockey right now - Gagner, Hemsky, Shutlz, Dubnyk, Hartikanen, Petrell, Petry, Smid

The rest can come back from hollywood anytime now, we need you.

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#100 Clarko
February 07 2013, 09:01AM
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bdiddy18 wrote:

1 Regulation win in 10 games - that is the most telling stat... throw in all the arguments why blah blah blah...it is still only 1 regulation win in ten games at that is atrocious.

AND GOOD!

because another thing about a youth movement - is cockiness and they where filled to the rim in it all of them Hall, Nuge, Eberle after treating the AHL like every game was an all star game they tried to bring that to the big show.

look at every game - you will see extra passes, nifty dance moves, crazy shots and TURNOVERS like no one has ever seen.

Yakopov - is still on cloud 9 - big eyed and shell shocked that he is in the NHL that is understandable but also making blunders.

The only two young guys that have come in - punched in to work and punched out are Justin Shultz and Devan Dubnyk. Calm - settled and ready for the next game.

Yes losing centres suck and yes Ryan Whitney is absolutely struggling after reconstructive surgery on both his feet,

but even more the reason for everyone to keep it simple, put the puck in the corner, crash the net and score ugly.

So after 10 games - I hope thats enough for the young guns to get the wake up call and realize settle down - play hockey. Ultimate job is to win games not razzle dazzle for the oooohs and aaaahs.

Who is playing hockey right now - Gagner, Hemsky, Shutlz, Dubnyk, Hartikanen, Petrell, Petry, Smid

The rest can come back from hollywood anytime now, we need you.

I suppose you can look at it that way, but they also only have 3 regulation losses in 10 games. When a team is in a slump, you have to still collect points which is what the Oilers have done thanks to Dubnyk and the Gagner line.

Hope the others can get going soon. Not only the top line, but others have to start contributing as well. Only 3 goals in 10 games from forwards outside the top 6.

But I agree with most of what you are saying except for Yakopov...sure he makes some mistakes but 5 goals and 8 points in 10 games for a rookie is outstanding.

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