GDB 34.0: AN OILERS WINNING STREAK?

Jason Gregor
March 30 2013 10:55AM

Tonight the Oilers will try to win three consecutive games for the first time this season. They've won back-to-back games only three times this year, and in their two previous attempts they lost in a SO vs. San Jose and in OT to Detroit. Their inability to put together a winning streak, even a short three-gamer, is the reason why they sit in 12th place in the west.

The Oilers are one of six teams without a three-game winning streak, and not surprisingly all six of them are out of the playoffs. Florida has won two straight game only twice, Oilers have done it three times, the Flames, Avalanche and Flyers four times and the Coyotes have won two straight five times.

No team in the history of the NHL has made the playoffs without a three-game winning streak, so if the Oilers have any post-season aspirations they need a win over the red-hot Vancouver Canucks.

The Canucks skate into Rexall Place on a six-game winning streak. They've won all six by with excellent goaltending and an average offence. Corey Schneider has allowed only 6 goals on 166 shots, .963SV%, while the Canucks have only scored 13 goals in the six wins.

The Oilers faced Roberto Luongo in their previous two meetings this year. They won 3-2 in a SO on January 20th in Vancouver and lost 3-2 in OT at Rexall Place on February 4th. While Schneider is playing great, the Canucks offence isn't that dynamic. They've scored 3+ goals in only 4 of their past 14 games, while the Oilers have tallied 3 or more in 6 of their past 9 games.

I doubt the Oilers can beat the Canucks in a defensive matchup, so they should try to turn tonight into a run-and-gun affair.

LINEUP

Hall/Nugent-Hopkins/Eberle
Jones/Horcoff/Yakupov
Paajarvi/Gagner/Hemsky
Brown/Smyth/Petrell

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

Dubnyk

Dubnyk picked up his 9th win of the season after replacing Nikolai Khabibulin 33 seconds into the third period. Dubnyk stopped all nine shots he faced and he'll try to end Schneider's six-game winning streak tonight.

I don't see any reason Krueger makes any other lineup changes. Only option would be to bring in Fistric for Potter/Whitney.

QUICK HITS

  • Ralph Krueger benched Taylor Hall for two shifts at the start of the third period, after two bad turnovers in the neutral zone late in the 2nd period. The Oilers can't afford to sit Hall for an entire period or a game, but Krueger's message was loud and clear. Benching Hall for two shifts sends a strong message to every player, and Hall admitted after the game that he deserved it. The best part was that no one made a big deal about it. Hall got the message, coach got his team's attention and Hall will likely be much smarter with the puck tonight.
     
  • I sat in row one on Thursday and it was a great reminder of how fast the game is. Watching it on TV and from the pressbox makes the game look much easier than it is. It's amazing how quick the players react, how fast even the slowest NHLer is, and how excellent their hand-eye coordination is. 
     
  • Thursdays game might have been the best home game of the season, from a pure entertainment standpoint. The goaltending wasn't great, Khabibulin, but there were three highlight reel goals; Eberle, Anisimov and Hemsky. There were lots of chances, few penalties and an exciting scrap. Fans don't get to experience many of those games, but that one offered something from beginning to end.
     
  • Taylor Hall, 31 points in 30 games, is on pace to become the first point-a-game player in Edmonton since Ryan Smyth tallied 31 goals and 53 points in 53 games in 2007. He finished the season with 15 points in 18 games with the Islanders, so his full season wasn't a point-a-game pace, but he did do it with Edmonton.
     
  • Doug Weight was the last Oiler to play a full season and average over one point-per-game when he tallied 90 points in 82 games during the 2000/2001 season.
     
  • The Penguins announced today that D-man Paul Martin will be out for six weeks. The Penguins still have about $4.5 million in cap space, so don't be surprised if Ray Shero makes another bold move.
     
  • In the past four days, the Oilers' playoff chances have jumped up 8%. After back-to-back wins they are up to 12.1% according to sportsclubstats.com. Could they jump to 16% with a victory tonight...Dare to dream Oiler fans, dare to dream.
     
  • Rumblings from Vancouver today is that the Canucks have put David Booth on LTIR, meaning they have the value of his contract, $4.25 million, to spend above the cap. The Canucks desperately need some more scoring, and this move gives Mike Gillis the cap space to make a move.

TONIGHT....

 

 GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Oilers will get their first three-game winning streak of the season with a 4-3 regulation win. Eberle, Hall and Gagner will each have two points.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Saturday night game on a long weekend means 25 people will get booted out during the game. I'll chat with security after the game to see the final tally, but I'm always amazed at how many people spend big bucks to go to the game, but end up allowing the Rexall Beer to get the best of them. Drink responsibly my friends.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Sam Gagner and Alex Burrows drop the gloves in a spirited second-period tilt. Anytime Samwise drops the mitts the fans get energized. Gagner likes to scrap once or twice a year, and after Burrows gives Paajarvi a cheap shot, Gagner flies in to defend his linemate. After the fight the crowd chants, Re-Sign Gagner, Re-sign Gagner... 

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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#101 dougtheslug
March 30 2013, 10:21PM
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DSF wrote:

Always important to keep things in perspective.

It was a good draft and the Oilers ended up with a third liner at 10.

Only,Johannsen and O'reilly have scored more goals and were drafted after Magnus in 09. Of the 200 or so players drafted after Magnus there is only one player(Dmitri Kulilov) that I might say in hindsight (and draft hindsight is a ridiculously silly game to play) I would covet.Look at the players drafted in the first round that year.Calvin deHaan?Peter Holland?Louis Leblanc?Chris Krieder? John Moore? Tim Erixon??? Out to lunch again, DSF.

But I don't care. Oiler up 4-0. And although the 4 goal lead might be the most dangerous lead in hockey, the Oil might be 1 (ONE!!!!) point out of a playoff spot in APRIL!!!!!! by tomorrow. Yeah, I know. Shortened season, a million teams tied for ninth, I don't care. If I was dragging DSF in a sack behind my pickup truck, I couldn't be happier.

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#102 Alsker
March 30 2013, 10:26PM
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oilcan wrote:

great game...flash of the future...l can not understand how brown isnt dealing with bieksa...he cant do this. our best players...he has been hunting hall...where is Semenko?

No sh^t, I'd take McClellan,Hunter,hell even a McSorley to go with Sir Semenko

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#103 NewAgeSys
March 30 2013, 10:35PM
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I so badly want the Oilers to step on the pedal but they are playing a nice shutdown game and that is playoff hockey which is exactly what they are supposed to be feeling right now.

We are letting them roll over because that is their reaction to situations like this, they dont react like the Sharks with teeth when you sink the Harpoon into them.

This has been a very well coached game and a well executed one from the Oilers players, now lets make sure we keep this level of first period preparedness for the next game, maintaing that consistancy of planning.

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#104 thednp
March 30 2013, 10:35PM
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Perry has been a beast tonight! To give credit where it's due the whole D has been super solid tonight. Whole team has been fully committed tonight. This is what we've wanted from them!

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#105 @Oilanderp
March 30 2013, 10:37PM
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Corey Perry doesn't play for the Oilers!

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#106 the dnp
March 30 2013, 10:38PM
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Petry! Not Perry! Damn auto correct

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#107 I tried it at home
March 30 2013, 10:39PM
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But he probably wishes he does *dum ba-dum dum rimshot*

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#108 OilersBrass
March 30 2013, 10:40PM
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Seems like the refs were paid off tonight. Missed a ton of calls.

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#109 hunkybill
March 30 2013, 10:41PM
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Contributions from everyone. Team game plan is being executed. Play for the shutout. Crisp shutdown point passes. Faceoff execution fulfillment. Put the hook in and sink it in. Don't let up on the slack to let it get away. Playoffs are one point away. Taste that mouthful. Execute the implementation plan by taking the man.

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#110 NewAgeSys
March 30 2013, 10:43PM
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I am really enjoying Ralphs performance tonight, he is dialed in and invloved, verbally and emotionally tempered but definitively engaged, he was actually yelling from the bench at the to many men penalty, outstanding. It really seems to help maintain the teams energy level when Ralph is chatting it up from the bench like he is tonight they seem to stay focused more.

Ralph and his crew are on top of their games and have been involved and letting the men know it for a full 6o mins and the Players are Rallying behind that leadership. You need to call it as you see it and this coaching staff really did save the best for last this year.

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#111 hunkybill
March 30 2013, 10:48PM
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Captain leading playing with no stick. No composure breakdown. Taking the lead by being patient. Give the energy that youth is meant for and get ready for the next I to the abyss of playoffs. Success requires focus. Next step. Next moment. Don't let up on the gas pedal, invite the turbo to inject you past teams ahead of you. It is attainable thru vigilance.

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#112 @Oilanderp
March 30 2013, 10:48PM
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Wow. Luongo. What a save man. Any team would be lucky to have a vet G like that who still has the try and competitiveness when down 4-0 in the third.

Robbed Hall of his fourth.

EDIT: ...and robs Eberle a few minutes later.

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#113 OilersBrass
March 30 2013, 10:51PM
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@Oilanderp wrote:

Wow. Luongo. What a save man. Any team would be lucky to have a vet G like that who still has the try and competitiveness when down 4-0 in the third.

Robbed Hall of his fourth.

EDIT: ...and robs Eberle a few minutes later.

He's made so many crazy saves. Unbelievable

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#114 hunkybill
March 30 2013, 10:52PM
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I agree Ralph has got team focused. No quit and all compete and fight by the young guns. Energy transfer from Ralph is almost autocommand. The new implementation of the organization to inject sincere enthusiasm from behind the bench leader is awesome. Yakupov will be taking the next step with his solid focused team inspired effort.

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#115 @Oilanderp
March 30 2013, 10:53PM
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It's times like this that the Canucks need to ask themselves, 'What would Kyle Wellwood do?'.

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#116 NewAgeSys
March 30 2013, 10:54PM
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hunkybill wrote:

Contributions from everyone. Team game plan is being executed. Play for the shutout. Crisp shutdown point passes. Faceoff execution fulfillment. Put the hook in and sink it in. Don't let up on the slack to let it get away. Playoffs are one point away. Taste that mouthful. Execute the implementation plan by taking the man.

Not really that close at all.

The Oilers were prepared with a superior gameplan and they didnt spend the entire game dumping the puck in to the Nucks so they could initiate their systems offense from the d-zone exit, they didnt let the Nucks lure them into a dumpin for dumpin slowed down type of game. we countered them immediatly in the 1st period. Very prepared coaching staff.

When the coach decided to shut the game down we made a nice switch to short neutral zone dumpins that denied them the deep dumpin they need to engage their system very well played by Ralph.

Nice way to teach the kids how to properly close out games. The players work hard every night, its the system execution from the bench that has improved dramaticlly lately. The pre-game level of preparation by the bench has been elevated the last three games.

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#117 Harlie - Team Admiral Hallsy
March 30 2013, 10:54PM
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We're so sorry Uncle Albert..

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

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#118 hunkybill
March 30 2013, 11:01PM
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Awesome overall win. We get the shutout. Next shut down flames.

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#119 rockmoss
March 30 2013, 11:05PM
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Wow! One of the best games I have seen them play in a long time. If Luongo doesn't stand on his head, the score would have been a lot worse. Great effort!

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#120 Evilstu
March 30 2013, 11:12PM
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Oooof, I won't even read this thread tonight. More emotion swings from Oiler fans than a hormonal, hungry, bitter old lady.

Great game Oilers. I hope you keep going with some Calgary decimation.

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#121 vetinari
March 30 2013, 11:23PM
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Saw three distinct phases to the Oilers' game tonight... period one was explosive firepower and pure energy... period two was a two-way battle and balance... period three was a defence first/playoff hockey period... great team outing from top to bottom... only thing that I would have liked to see added to their game was some more physicality, especially with a response to Bieksa running Hall.

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#122 Newj
March 30 2013, 11:29PM
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thednp wrote:

Perry has been a beast tonight! To give credit where it's due the whole D has been super solid tonight. Whole team has been fully committed tonight. This is what we've wanted from them!

HNIC gave Dubnyk the 2nd star, maybe they had to cuz he got the SO, but I had Petry pegged for a star. His 3rd period was fantastic. Great team performance.

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#123 SLAM
March 30 2013, 11:49PM
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KleptoKlown wrote:

Oilers sniffing at a playoff spot? Here comes the Canucks to (once again) put the cOilers where they belong. The drive for 9th is alive and strong in Edmonton.

@Gregor - you predict Schneider and his .963sv% during this win streak gives up 4 goals...to the Oilers? Bwaaaahahaha. Leave the predictions to Sylvia Brown.

The funny part of all this is the Canucks are missing half of their top 6 forwards, yet are still finding ways to win. Schneider gets his 3rd shutout this month, with a typical Canucks victory.

BWAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA !!!!!

How's that 0% save percentage working out for those knuckleheads?

Well at least SOMEONE got a shutout tonight...

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I think we should start the parade at the new arena site and end it at West Edmonton Mall and have a big beach party in the waterpark.

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#125 Rindog
March 31 2013, 12:18AM
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DSF wrote:

Always important to keep things in perspective.

It was a good draft and the Oilers ended up with a third liner at 10.

Really?

One of the dumbest replies/posts I have read.

Be better!!!

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#126 Ryan2
March 31 2013, 12:29AM
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DSF wrote:

Always important to keep things in perspective.

It was a good draft and the Oilers ended up with a third liner at 10.

Hey DSF, how is your wonderboy from the pre-season Granlund doing this year? He is really tearing it up with the Wild, isn't he?

We will see in a couple of years how MPS is doing. My guess is he will be higher than a third liner, but if all he is a third liner that can score 20 a year, shut down the opposition's top line, and kill penalties effectively then he will be a player that every team in the league will want. In addition, that will mean that the Oilers will have another stud left winger after Hall which will mean an even stronger team overall. Not that bad of a scenario to have, is it?

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#127 Rob
March 31 2013, 12:36AM
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yowza!!

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#128 Ryan2
March 31 2013, 12:48AM
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Rindog wrote:

Really?

One of the dumbest replies/posts I have read.

Be better!!!

Maybe DSF can enlighten us and lets us know how many other #10 overall picks have been studs from the get go since 2000.

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#129 bazmagoo
March 31 2013, 01:13AM
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I've been a pretty big critic of Ralph and Potter this year, but I have to admit they have both been impressing me lately. Good for Potter, guy has taken the long road to the NHL but he's proving me wrong recently.

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#130 bazmagoo
March 31 2013, 01:26AM
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Would like to applaud Tambellini as well, considering the mess that the scouting department was before he came on board we should all be thankful he's in the organization. It started with him revamping the amateur scouting but now he seems to be doing well with pro scouting as well.

Since the Eager - Belanger signings he's done well bringing in great team guys (N Schultz - Brown, resiging Smyth - Petrell) and not panicking on any dumb trade moves. We still need to be a little patient, but I see great things in the Oilers future.

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#131 One cold Canadian
March 31 2013, 01:58AM
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I rarely see the need to throw my two cents in... However, As a hockey FAN I can appreciate a good team effort from any group wearing ANY jersey. I may not like that team (Vancouver, Calgary ) but I can still find a modicum of respect when they pull out a good clutch win. DSF, you are an ass clown. You troll this site in an effort to evoke some sort of response with your blathering diatribe about how this player is way better then that player and this guys corsi is so much stronger then that players. We all get that you consider yourself a "hockey man" but you reveal yourself to be nothing more then a whimpering little girl stomping her feet for attention.

Flail your arms and hold your breath for an hour until someone pays attention.

I realize that my writing this has made your little heart go pitter/patter as someone is giving you exactly what you want : ATTENTION.

Why the disappearing act after your team got smoked?

You sir...are a turd.

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#132 bazmagoo
March 31 2013, 02:27AM
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I think we all need to ignore DSF, it's pretty obvious he's an idiot. Site wide snub, nobody acknowledge his posts. It will make for a more civil, intelligent discussion.

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#133 DigDeepNBleedBlue
March 31 2013, 03:28AM
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Ahhhhh! Love it! 2pts out of a playoff spot. Nice game. And, against the Nucks. Very cool.

On a side note: There has been a lot of closet nucks fans come out in Edmonton the last few years. Wow. All I got to say is "Boston." lol

Tonight was fun.

Now Calgary. I smell blood. If we win these two, how sweet would that be, we would be dug into the fight for one of the last playoff spots.

This sh*t still ain't over yet, peeps.

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#134 Old Retired Guy
March 31 2013, 08:06AM
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WOW......Once again, a glimpse at the future. Only the future seems not so far away.

The whole was greater than the sum of the parts. Hall, Ebbs, and Nuge on one line, and we still had a balanced attack across all 4 lines.

Magnus Paajarvi is quickly working his way into the group of 5.....untouchables. (soon to be the group of 6)

Petry played like a top-2 Dman and Dubnyk like a 1A.

Makes you think twice about making any hasty moves at the deadline. A win against Calgary on Monday could actually turn us into buyers.

And we've got Klefbom and a Curtis Lazar (or equivlant) waiting in the wings. Also, a handfull of larger/more rugged 4th liners in the system (to take the load off of Mike Brown).

Of course there will be bumps in the road (i.e. when the wheel on Oilers bus runs over DSF). I'm just trying to remember the name of that show in the 80's with all those stars and all that drama....oh yeah....now I remember.......DYNASTY!

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#135 Rod from Viking
March 31 2013, 08:14AM
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@Old Retired Guy

Bumps in the road part, hilarious, great post

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#136 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
March 31 2013, 08:27AM
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Last nights performance has inspired me to post under a new name.

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#137 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
March 31 2013, 08:33AM
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DigDeepNBleedBlue wrote:

Ahhhhh! Love it! 2pts out of a playoff spot. Nice game. And, against the Nucks. Very cool.

On a side note: There has been a lot of closet nucks fans come out in Edmonton the last few years. Wow. All I got to say is "Boston." lol

Tonight was fun.

Now Calgary. I smell blood. If we win these two, how sweet would that be, we would be dug into the fight for one of the last playoff spots.

This sh*t still ain't over yet, peeps.

DigDeepNBleedBlue.....you should consider an a.k.a. for special games.....like Oilers/Flames.....DigDeepNDrawBlood !

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#138 Rod from Viking
March 31 2013, 08:49AM
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If the Oil are in a playoff spot come Wednesday I would sure like to see if they could trade s roster player for someone like George Parros. I really think other teams are going to keep running the young guns and if there is no one but Brown someone is going to get hurt. Don't get me wrong I love the way Mike Brown plays but he can't fight every other game like he has been.

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#139 michael
March 31 2013, 09:12AM
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DSF if you have not been watching MPS has been the one Oiler in the last 15 games who has consistently gone to the net. As far as his development goes he had no confidence last year due to Renny's mishandling of him.He lost his confidence and toiled in the minors for the rest of the season as we all know. Coplete 180 this year.Confidence has returned with the guidance of a patient coach who litteraly spoon feed MPS's confidence one shift at a time. His minutes have climbed and he now is regularly seeing 14-16 minutes a night.

Looking at MPS in a short term window is useless. He is on the second line playing with confidence.Producing points and doings things to take care of his own end. What more do you need him to do?

Shock and Hallwas a heck of a game strategy last night by RK. Worked to a tee. By the time the Nucks realized what hit them the game was over.For me I was impressed by how the Oilers defended the lead in the 2cd and 3rd periods. Vancouver did not look threatening at all in the 3rd. They looked beaten. Where is that vaunted \\\\pp /// from a couple of years ago. Did they not sign Jason Garrison to a huge contract exactly for that purpose? 2/55 is not what I would consider Stanley Cup material. I find the Nucks wanting. They were 6-0 coming into a big conference and divisional game and laid an egg. All the Nuck talk is about their goaltending. 14 goals in 6 games. There should be alot of \nuck fans worried today after the beatdown they got last night. Lou was great. CS to the Leafs for Bozek would make sense.

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#140 Acumen
March 31 2013, 09:29AM
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bazmagoo wrote:

I think we all need to ignore DSF, it's pretty obvious he's an idiot. Site wide snub, nobody acknowledge his posts. It will make for a more civil, intelligent discussion.

Please, for the love of God, everyone do this.

It's the easiest way to just get him to shut up: don't rise to the bait. Trying to sift through all the angry responses to the clown is the one aggravating part about looking at the conversation generated on this site.

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#141 Old Retired Guy
March 31 2013, 09:44AM
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Acumen wrote:

Please, for the love of God, everyone do this.

It's the easiest way to just get him to shut up: don't rise to the bait. Trying to sift through all the angry responses to the clown is the one aggravating part about looking at the conversation generated on this site.

Perhaps, rather than asking everyone to ignore him.......( you will always get newbies who don't know who he is)....you should just ask all the regulars to respond to ANY DSF post with the term "5SC".......this is the thing that DSF has no answer for.....5 Stanley Cups.... 5SC could become as popular as FIST!

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#142 Old Retired Guy
March 31 2013, 09:45AM
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Old Retired Guy wrote:

Perhaps, rather than asking everyone to ignore him.......( you will always get newbies who don't know who he is)....you should just ask all the regulars to respond to ANY DSF post with the term "5SC".......this is the thing that DSF has no answer for.....5 Stanley Cups.... 5SC could become as popular as FIST!

5SC no more no less

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#143 Old Retired Guy
March 31 2013, 09:48AM
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Old Retired Guy wrote:

5SC no more no less

"So let it be written"...."So let it be done"

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#144 Old Retired Guy
March 31 2013, 09:54AM
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If the Oil were to win the 2 games they have in hand over Winnipeg, they would be in first place in the Southeast Division and 3rd place overall in the East........just sayin....

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#145 One cold Canadian
March 31 2013, 09:58AM
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5SC (lots more/no less)

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#146 MAC962
March 31 2013, 10:01AM
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That could easily been 7-8 zip. But i will take 4.

A game like that can easily carry over for a few more...

Hello Calgary...are you listening ? You are now in our way.

Be prepared to be stepped on. We remember.

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#147 Mac962
March 31 2013, 10:03AM
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I still want one mean sob to take care of pricks like Bieksa. One shot to one of the sisters faces should have come there is no question in my mind. Hall or any of the kids not not be touched to that extent without retribution.

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#148 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
March 31 2013, 10:04AM
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One cold Canadian wrote:

5SC (lots more/no less)

Agreed.

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#149 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
March 31 2013, 10:09AM
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Mac962 wrote:

I still want one mean sob to take care of pricks like Bieksa. One shot to one of the sisters faces should have come there is no question in my mind. Hall or any of the kids not not be touched to that extent without retribution.

I get the point and agree.....question is do you want one "coke machine" playing 3 minutes a game and taking up a roster spot....

Or 2 more Mike Browns.....

Or, is there a guy out there you see who can play 12-14 minutes and play the enforcer role?

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#150 Oiler Ala
March 31 2013, 10:49AM
Trash it!
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Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty) wrote:

I get the point and agree.....question is do you want one "coke machine" playing 3 minutes a game and taking up a roster spot....

Or 2 more Mike Browns.....

Or, is there a guy out there you see who can play 12-14 minutes and play the enforcer role?

Get rid of Jones, and get another Brown, I would suggest. I think with Jones's eye injury, he is not the same player, not that he was ever though.

I quoted elsewhere aside from everything that went on in the game, mostly good, my one disappointment was that no one took care of Beiksa who I think is the biggest cheap shot artist in the West Conf. , goes with the head bobbing and diving that comes from the Canucks camp.

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