GDB 37.0: DOWN TO THE DIRTY DOZEN

Jason Gregor
April 04 2013 09:19AM

The Oilers took care of business and swept the Flames, two games they had to win, and now the real games begin. Nine of the Oilers remaining 12 games are against playoff teams, and this is the scenario the Oilers desperately wanted their young team to experience.

The intensity will increase, and the youthful Oilers will need to match the consistency, smarts and veteran savvy of the Canucks, Ducks, Blackhawks, Wild and Kings.

These games matter. The players know it, management knows it and the fans know it. This should be fun.

You can sense the excitement in the city and on the Nation. Fans are jacked up. The scar tissue you've obtained from seven seasons of watching an over-matched, under-talented, uninspiring team is starting to breakdown. You actually look forward to the games, because you believe your team has a legitimate chance to win.

If you are under 30 it is likely a feeling you've never truly experienced during the regular season. The Oilers are still a few players short of being a dominant team, but their first line is the hottest line in the NHL, and when one line is that good you have a chance to win any game.

During this five-game winning streak Taylor Hall has 14 points, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has 10 and Jordan Eberle has 8. They've combined for 32 points, and the scary part is that they've missed some glorious chances. Their speed, skill and smarts are a deadly combination right now, and it will be interesting to see how Alain Vigneault, Darryl Sutter and Bruce Boudreau try to slow them down on this road trip.

LINEUP

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

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

Dubnyk (Although Krueger hinted he hasn't made up his mind and Khabibulin might play. I don't see any reason not to play Dubnyk)

Magnus Paajarvi is banged up, but Krueger said this after the game last night, "It's not a serious injury, it's a manageable one. He's probable for tomorrow." Hemsky has been playing with a minor knick, and I suspect Paajarvi will dress tonight. If the injury is more about pain-tolerance than impacting his play he'll go. Players can play hurt, but it isn't wise to play injured, especially if the injury will limit your performance.

Jerred Smithson, acquired yesterday from Florida, will be in the hospital today as his fiance is scheduled to give birth. He told me yesterday that if things go as planned, he'll join the team in either Los Angeles or Anaheim. "Family comes first, once we get the baby figured out, I'll join the team as quick as I can. I can't wait to play in Edmonton," Smithson told me on my radio show yesterday.

I'd play Smithson when he gets here. He shoots right and his FO% the last four years is: 54.8% in 2013, 56.1% in 2012, 57.4% in 2011, 54.9 in 2010, 52.6% in 2009. He can win draws, and you can use him and Horcoff on different sides.

QUICK HITS

  • The Oilers nine remaining games against playoff teams are all against the top-six teams in the west. They will have to play one of them in the playoffs if they make it, so they might as well get used to it.
     
  • The Oilers are 8-2-2 since Shawn Horcoff called a player's only meeting and returned to the lineup in Chicago. I know the 4/93/14 line is carrying this team offensively, but Horcoff's message sunk in. The Oilers have cut down on their turnovers in the defensive and neutral zone. And they rarely turn it over at the offensive blueline anymore. Those plays were killing them early in the season.
     
  • The other big change is their willingness to drive the net. Guys without the puck are finally going to the net and creating havoc. 
     
  • The Oilers are 2nd in combined special teams at 108.3. They are 3rd in PP effeciency at 23.8% and 7th on the PK at 84.5%.
     
  • It is hard not to like Roberto Luongo these days. His twitter feed is hilarious, and yesterday, when the Canucks made the idiotic decision to make him hold a press conference to discuss why he wasn't traded, he was very honest and classy. When asked why he wasn't traded he replied, "Cause my contact sucks. If I could rip it up now I would."
     
  • You could tell not playing is killing him. He's handled this situation extremely well, and when the Canucks finally trade him to the eastern conference I suspect many fans will be cheering for him. Tonight of course, you hope the Oilers light up him and Corey Schneider.
     
  • Derek Roy will help the Canucks. They desperately needed a 2nd line centre, and he will give them some much-needed secondary scoring.
     
  • I liked the Columbus decision to acquire Marian Gaborik, especially because it didn't cost them any of their three first-round picks. Even if they don't make the playoffs this year, the Blue Jackets added a proven sniper. Basically, the deals between the Rangers and Blue Jackets look like this...Nash, Brassard, Dorsett, Moore and a 6th for Gaborik, Dubinsky, Erixon, Anisimov and a 1st rounder. I'd still say the Blue Jackets did well.
     
  • Very interesting move by George McPhee to trade away Filip Forsberg, 11th pick in 2012, for Martin Erat. The Capitals will win the South East this year, because they are rolling and the Jets and Hurricanes are on the skids, but how will this trade look in a few years. I've gotten very differing views from scouts. Some really like him, while others think he'll never produce more points than Erat. Time will tell. Caps win trade today, but Preds could benefit greatly in the future.
     
  • Don't look now, but the Oilers playoff chances, according to sportsclubstats, are up to 42.1% after last night's victory. Before the five-game winning streak they were at 4.1%. That is quite the jump. Detroit is at 72.7% and St. Louis 70.4%, but the Oilers have closed the gap considerably.

MIRROR, MIRROR ON THE WALL....

GAME DAY PREDICTION: Have to go with the hot team considering I've picked them to win the last four. I know how superstitious the Nation can be. Oilers win in OT, 4-3.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: The Hall, RNH, Eberle line combine for six points.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION:  Ryan Smyth ends his 20-game goal scoring drought with a deflection early in the 2nd period. Smyth does a triple combination fist-pump, look-to-the-heavens, glove-slide-on-the-ice celebration afterwards. His young teammates love the "celly," especially Yakupov who says to Smyth, "Prunes is going to love that and use it during Hockey Night in Canada,"

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR

***This will be a DSF comment free section today. From your quiet editor/tech producer who needs a break from it all. Any comment with mention of him will be quietly deleted. Enjoy the game and one free day...***

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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#1 Skeptik
April 04 2013, 09:26AM
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Let me be the fist to say I hope we slaughter Vancouver worse than Calgary.

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#2 Rob...
April 04 2013, 09:26AM
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What's the over/under on suspension worthy infractions that Bieksa gets away with?

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#3 tileguy
April 04 2013, 11:06AM
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OGDP - Smitty scores one off his pants. (end debate)

Great idea to bring up either Eager or Hordi, just for the plane rides if nothing else.

Leave Potter alone, like all the oilers he is nicely rounding into form. and finally

props to Tambo for staying the course, remember back in January when all we wanted was meaningful games in April, well we have that in spades. Free agancy is actually going to be fun this summer, lots of cap room, Katz cheque book will be wide open. This is a young team that has broken 2 old Oilers records this year, one more year and we will be playing meaningful games in May. Squeeeeeeee

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#4 27Ginge
April 04 2013, 02:48PM
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I hope Krueger splits up the top line. Need more balanced scoring. This idea that having one good line that scores a whole bunch goals has little to no merit. Since when does scoring goals help win games? Hockey is about systems and balance and equal ice time. Letting good players play lots and be creative is a recipe for disaster.

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#5 ghostofberanek
April 04 2013, 10:52AM
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6 games ago, I was complaining about Taylor Hall. I whined and moaned about his play, give aways etc. I stated that I hope he makes me look like an idiot for saying that. Well, here we are. I'm an idiot, and I couldn't be happier for it.

Also, kudos to Tambi for (what I believe), was a good read on the situation yesterday. They're just now starting to gel, and you simply don't mess with that. I think he's done a fine job for the most part.

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#6 2004Z06
April 04 2013, 12:18PM
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...I really don't care if the Oil make the playoffs. If they do...great, but that is not what this season was supposed to be about. It was supposed to be about improvement and playing meaningful games in the spring. It seems they have met those targets in spades. The team has improved 11 spots in the standings this year. That in itself is staggering. The Canucks on the other hand have fallen 9 spots since their Presidents Trophy performance. If I am a Vancouver fan, I am quickly realizing the window has slammed shut.

Imagine where the Oil would be if Eberle and RNH were on the same pace as last year? This team would be ahead of Vancouver in the standings for sure.

Thank you for continuing to point out the negatives of what should be considered a significantly positive step for this organization.

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#7 vetinari
April 04 2013, 04:42PM
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NewAgeSys wrote:

You are dead on the Money, the system dictates the type of and volume of scoreing chances for and against.Every game.

The real key to winning NHL games and championships is to have a superior SYSTEM for everyone to "buy into", but it is ALL ABOUT THE SYSTEM.

The way the Oilers remain unstoppable is by consistantly for 60 mins executeing a simple system presentation and by doing EXACTLY as the coaches say when they say it.

I believe the Oilers are finally subscribing to the NewAge Hockey Systems core values accurately for the first time, they are embracing the constellation of philosophys not just bits and pieces, this evolution should be permanent. Note- Halls is managing his game much differently since the 1st line exploded, the dynamic managment has been absolutely different, thanks to the NHS.

6-2 Oilers, in a physical grindfest, the Nucks will lose a Sedin tonight and Bieksa will be two-handed across the wrist and be gone by the 2nd period, no more BS, we will give pain to get the 2 pt gain. Not a good time to screw with us. We can add physicality to our game without losing any offense, its a bad idea to cheapshot us because once we have a 4 goal lead we will cut the dogs loose on you and begin doing surgery on your top stars with our sticks and elbows. We are getting tough. Eberle erupts for his first hattrick tonight to push Hallsy even higher than he has gone on his own

@NewAgeSys - buddy, I defended your right last night to speak as you do to some Flame trash talkers, but really, you would benefit from a personal editor and your comments should be more concise to be effective on this type of forum.

Here's what I took from your post #101:

"You need to develop offensive and defensive systems that work with the players you have, and that they can execute. The Oilers did great last night because they are playing as a team and not as individuals. Now that we know positioning we can try to up the physical aspect against Vancouver. Hall and Eberle are warriors."

See? More concise and to the point.

On a side note, I always envisioned your day job as being either a cult leader, an angry drifter who posts from public libraries or a coffee fuelled auctioneer... any hints?

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#8 Clyde Frog
April 04 2013, 04:49PM
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@NewAgeSys

My dog's breath smells like catfood....

Do you have a system to determine if he is actually a dog?

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#9 cableguy - 2nd Tier Fan
April 04 2013, 04:55PM
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Eddie Shore wrote:

What ever happened to the Ogden Brothers?

last rumour had all 7 of them forming a Partridge Family tribute band and going on tour.

i think they hired Rosscreek to be the bus driver and only had to pay him with a TSN2 subscription.

rumour like that must be true

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#10 sizedoesmatter
April 04 2013, 09:54AM
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The last few years the Oilers started strong then got worse as the season went on.This year they started slow and have Improved as the season went on.I really like there chances to play in the post season.

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#11 Clarko
April 04 2013, 11:45AM
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Oiler Al wrote:

Re dessing some muscle for last nights game,I said it the day before they should dress Fistric or Peckham, as I could see the previous game the loogans were circling the wagons... no Krueger dresses Potter.. Its not like he would be a big loss.

Your right Brown cant handle all of this on his own... Cheap shot artist like Bieksa will be at it again.. needs taking care of.. Oilers wont get revenge by scoring, because this is a whole different team than Calgary.

Krueger wake up for a change! And while your at it wake up Hemsky from his slumber.

Our star players need to get use to this type of treatment from players like Bieksa. Dressing more goons, with no other purpose in the lineup, does not help this team win.

Our 4th line is finally a true energy line. Potter is +6 during this 5-game winning streak. We have outscored our opposition 25-7!! I think we can cut Krueger a break.

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#12 OILERSORDEATH
April 04 2013, 11:50AM
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DSF wrote:

Defensemen rarely win the Calder and they would have to be dominant at both ends of the ice to do so.

Schultz is -10.

Last night, in an 8 goal game, Schultz picked up only 1 assist and was -1 on the night.

That won't win you a Calder trophy.

Yeah well the game on Monday he had 3pts (1g 2a's)+2 or +3? more games like that WILL win you the Calder.

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#13 mlcsellil
April 04 2013, 02:10PM
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Jason, your final comments on your last two blogs are brilliant. Kudos to you for that. Besides ClydeFrog and his excellent writing, you are the only other one that can muzzle the big mouthed self appointed genius. Thank you for letting us celebrate the Oilers success and extend our well wishes to them, without negativity from a certain poster.

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#14 book¡e
April 04 2013, 10:48AM
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@DSF

Those odds are based upon an even pace of winning and losing over the season and are quite simplistic. They don't take into account teams playing better or worse than they were earlier in the season.

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#15 Dave Lumley
April 04 2013, 11:22AM
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@tileguy

Not just meaningful games in May but entertaining ones as well. He could have cheated and brought us to mediocrity sooner with a team and coach built for the trap.

This will be a really good, entertaining team for many years to come. And it is on course as planned.

I will add that I am more of a fan of Tambo's plan than I am of him, but I am so happy he has the gumption to stick to it in spite of all the bleeting.

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#16 oldhippy
April 04 2013, 11:25AM
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I tried it at home wrote:

Im not saying it would happen, but out of curiouslty, could Horcoff take Bieksa in a good ol' fashioned Drop The Gloves waltz? Ive seen the man, he's not exactly small, has shown heart and is a fitness nut. I know he's not a fighter per se, but it certainly would go a long ways to cementing his legacy as Captain of the Oilers.

Coming off a busted knuckle? I like Horcoff a lot. Not worth his contract, maybe, but leads this club the only way he knows how. Best way to counter Bieksa is to run the twins after every Bieksa cheap shot.

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#17 Bucknuck
April 04 2013, 11:35AM
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@Will

Is "douchebaggary" a word? It should be. If it is I wonder if Websters has "see troll" in the comment somewhere.

Under "troll" I can think of a few names that could be referenced for sure. Someone who posts chiefly to upset people and get a reaction would be the gist of it. It would make me sad if some of them actually believed the drivel they are typing and they truly considered themselves fans. I would prefer to believe that they are just trying to get a reaction, rather than them being truly that arrogant and stupid.

It's just really good that the Oil have it within their power whether to make the post season or not. They do not have to rely on other teams losing. It's just great to be in the mix. And the games are going to be intense and that is exciting for me. I have wanted to watch them play "meaningful hockey" for a long time.

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#18 1manwolfpack
April 04 2013, 11:44AM
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Save the Cheerleader,save the...season? I sure didn't predict the Oil would be in this position after that Road Trip from Hell.

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#19 vetinari
April 04 2013, 11:51AM
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The epic road trip was the low(e) point of the season; the home stand and Flames double-header has been the high point.

I feel bipolar watching these guys in action... one game, they score on themselves or Dubs can't stop a shot from centre ice, and the next game, they come in wave after wave like they're storming the beaches of Normandy.

I hope that they can ride the energy of last night's victory into this evening's game because Vancouver is better positionally, and will cut down the kids room to wheel.

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#20 Bucknuck
April 04 2013, 02:13PM
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What!? A GDB that isn't dominated by one person slamming the Oilers all day long. SWEET. They have been terrible enough the last six years without having to put up with that on an Oilers site.

I will be watching Gagner tonight. Is it just me, or has he started to let up a little the last few games (I noticed he had two pts last night). I wish the guy could get consistent with faceoffs, but other than that I have been so impressed with him this season.

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#21 Dennis
April 04 2013, 04:18PM
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How do we props the "quiet editor" cause that guy deserves some mad props! Cheers to you, kind sir!

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#22 Harlie - Team Admiral Hallsy
April 04 2013, 05:13PM
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Initially I scoffed at the Brown pickup and was pissed about the wasting of time with Eager and Hordichuk, but I'm loving Brown's play.

Not only can he fight, and he swings em' quick! But, I like his speed and his positional play and how he'll rag a guy down until he gets a puck or our zone is clear.

It hurts me to say it..but props to you Mr.T

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#23 Oil Kings 'n' Pretty Things
April 04 2013, 06:02PM
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Will wrote:

Ha! Not sure about its current status awaiting Webster's approval. I actually feel a little bad as I didn't read the last part of Gregor's blog.

I suppose the point I'm trying to make is that using biased stats to prove a point only really proves you're biased. And it is great to see that all the nay sayers who use any kind of stats for prediction purposes, are usually only half right half of the time.

Much like the end of Money Ball, you can't build a team around averages because night in and night out, averages usually don't amount to much.

To that effect, everyone looking at the record we need going forward to make it, is basing their prediction off the fact that the projected point total to get in is like 55 or 53, and that other teams around us in the standings, will continue their win loss pace for the rest of the season.

But hockey, and in fact most sports, do not work like that. Whose to say any of the current teams in the playoffs or the ones chasing won't go into a slump, or go on a hot streak? Clearly most of the league is structured so that almost every team has a chance, and that is currently being demonstrated by how tight the race is in both divisions. To say the Oilers will win and lose a certain number of games based on their competition completely undermines the fact they've beaten every single one of those teams at least once, and if they've done it before, they can do it again.

Banging away with stats, though useful to a point, kind of misses the point if that's all you look at. Show me the stat that demonstrates why we've done so well since Shawn Horcoff came back.

"The motivational speech to win ration increased upon Horcoff's return". Sorry for ranting but I'm sure anyone that has ever actually played hockey knows the infinite amount of intangibles that can't be tracked that go into winning and losing.

Did you actually watch the end of Moneyball?

The point was that you actually CAN build a very effective team by relying solely on advanced stats because the anecdotal evidence doesn't paint the whole story.

Sure they lost an important game, but I'm pretty sure in the epilogue text it talks about the fact that their system was so effective that every team in the league now uses it.

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#24 Romanus
April 04 2013, 08:01PM
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I didn't notice those last couple of lines. Now I know why I haven't seen a bunch of annoying posts from he who shall not be named.

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#25 charliedont
April 05 2013, 01:17AM
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- Hemsky will still be 38 trying to deke the blueline into submission. He has the IQ of a rock.

- Whitney can't skate. Literally, the guy has problems turning around.

- Petrell is like that guy at work that nobody talks to and stays late after work, so everyone assumes he's doing his job, when really he's just writing a screenplay about vampires.

- Every time Smyth winds-up for a slapshot, a comedian somewhere gets nervous that he might steal their job.

- The overhead cam shot of Khabibulin looked like me guessing on my Calc III exam: no clue.

- Yakupov has a magnetic field around him that only reacts to rubber and makes it impossible for a puck to lay flat or still around him. Ever. It looks like street hockey with a tennis ball when it's near him.

- John Garrett thinks everything is a penalty, except being the Johnny Miller of hockey commentary: that's ok, negativity rules and clearly both could probably still play and kick in some goals like Jagr.

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#26 Y14EBS
April 04 2013, 09:31AM
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Looks like a fun run for the playoffs, the ball is in our court now JUST KEEP WINNING

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#27 geoilersgist
April 04 2013, 09:32AM
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Make it 6 straight tonight! I think the Canucks were idiotic for making him hold a news conference. In all honesty they would have been smarter to move Schneider with his low cap hit and probable better return. If the Oil win tonight and some other games go our way we will get some breathing room.

Awesome NSOGDP you are killing it JG.

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#28 TayLordBalls
April 04 2013, 09:41AM
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when both 1st and 2nd lines click at the same time, this team is unstoppable!

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#29 Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)
April 04 2013, 09:43AM
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PRUNES !!! LOL!!!

Et Les Premier Trois....Da Firse Star.....Jason Gregor!

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#30 Oil Dude
April 04 2013, 09:54AM
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A win tonight coupled with a Minney loss would put us within three points of the NW crown.

Maybe I am starting to get greedy though?

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#31 Rick
April 04 2013, 10:06AM
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I know Kreuger doesn't want to mess with a winning lineup but even so I struggle to see why he refuses to swap Potter out for Peckham when heading into situations like last night.

It's a little unnerving to see Jackman, Begin and McGratton lined up on one side and poor, undersized Mike Brown standing alone on the other.

The Canucks aren't exactly pushover's either, nor do they have the same crappy PK that the Flames have. Once the Oilers run into a game where the PP isn't clicking, the opposition will probably just grow another inch or two instead of pulling back.

I also wonder if now that the deadline has passed and the roster limits have changed, will the Oilers consider bringing Hordichuk or Eager back up, just to have them available should they find they are getting run a little to regularly?

Re quick hits; In looking at what Columbus did yesterday, considering how poorly they fared over the last...umm forever, in running Nash out by himself, have they not just taken a step back towards the same formula? Gave up depth but perhaps more importantly leadership and personality in order to bring in a single scorer.

That team will continue to live and die on Bobrovsky's play and that may be enough to get into the top 8 but I don't think yesterday's trade is going to be judged well by history when talking big picture/long term.

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#32 Phixieus666
April 04 2013, 10:20AM
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Oil Dude wrote:

A win tonight coupled with a Minney loss would put us within three points of the NW crown.

Maybe I am starting to get greedy though?

Hell no man, that is exactly what I'd be telling my guys to aim for. They play two games against each of Van and Min. If they win all 4 of those that closes the gap to 1 point. and above all else, winning the division guarantees a playoff birth.

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#33 Quicksilver ballet
April 04 2013, 10:21AM
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Taylor Hall waits till his team is up by five before the Bieksa payback is taken care of. Hall waits till he's facing the boards and slams him into the glass so hard, his head falls off.

With every passing victory, the Fear This series against the Blackhawks becomes a step closer to reality.

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#34 Will
April 04 2013, 10:25AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

In my eyes the Oilers management wasted a perfect opportunity to either add a player of significance or acquire draft picks.

Tambys pathetic rambling as to why he did not do anything is most preplexing.......something about not wanting to upset the locker room. Please Tamby we all see through your inability to do anything, stop with all the stupid excuses.

Washington practically gave away Forsberg for Erat.........hell we could have probably offered Jones and Belenger and got the deal done. No one can tell me that you cant build and convert useless talent at the same time........good teams do it all the time.

I'm just not buying the Tamby excuses for not doing anything.

It's definitely not like he didn't try. Tambi's big deal was for Bishop. And considering what Tampa had to give up for him, you know, only the leading rookie scorer, it was a huge cost for a backup goalie.

As for "giving away Foresberg", Erat is not just a nothing player. Not to mention, what do you think Nashville's chances are for playoffs?

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#35 Clyde Frog
April 04 2013, 10:27AM
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Well looking at the standings, we are 2 back of Detroit, 4 back of LA and 5 of the Canucks and the Wild all with the same amount of games played

St.Louis is 1 back of us but has 2 games in hand.

So who do we play? The Canucks and Wild twice and LA once.

That means if we win the remaining series against the Canucks or Wild we are effectively one point behind them...

2 points behind LA if we beat them and well only 2 back of Detroit right now.

The remaining schedule is tough, but we actually have a lot of control against 3 of the 4 teams we are battling with for a playoff spot.

This really is the best we could have hoped for heading in to the final 10 games of the season.

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#36 Phixieus666
April 04 2013, 10:27AM
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Whitney will take on Bieksa man. We are all good.

Honestly I don't care what choices Kreuger makes as long as they keep winning. If you need whitney and potter to better transition the puck to make that happen then by all means go for it.

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#37 itchy
April 04 2013, 10:32AM
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Just had to explain to my boss why i was laughing out loud at work....prunes. Gold.

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#38 Smokey
April 04 2013, 10:40AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

In my eyes the Oilers management wasted a perfect opportunity to either add a player of significance or acquire draft picks.

Tambys pathetic rambling as to why he did not do anything is most preplexing.......something about not wanting to upset the locker room. Please Tamby we all see through your inability to do anything, stop with all the stupid excuses.

Washington practically gave away Forsberg for Erat.........hell we could have probably offered Jones and Belenger and got the deal done. No one can tell me that you cant build and convert useless talent at the same time........good teams do it all the time.

I'm just not buying the Tamby excuses for not doing anything.

Erat is a hell of a hockey player. Maybe not as gifted as Hemsky, but an overall better player. I believe to get Forsberg you were looking at least at giving up Hemsky. Washington paid a damn good pric eefor a rental. Jones and Belanger get you a 4rth round pick not a guy who projected to go top 5 and then dropped to 11th

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#39 A-Mc
April 04 2013, 10:49AM
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Wow some people are just never happy. The Oil are on a 5 game win streak that has them sitting in a fragile 8th place and yet some fans will still waste thier time griping about management and potter.

Look: the team is winning and even when they dont, they are still playing well. Leave them be.

Moving on...

So here we are with 12 games left and the dreaded but possible 7-5-0 record Target. Im Nervous as F#ck. im going to need to learn to control my emotions if the Oil have progressed to a bubble team.

*deep breath*

GDP: ... Cant do it. Im leaving it to the hockey gods..the oh so merciful hockey gods.

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#40 StHenriOilBomb
April 04 2013, 10:58AM
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GDP: Vancouver is not the team it once was. Oilers battle back from a 3-1 third period deficit to win 5-4 in OT.

OGDP: Nuge's line scores 2 goals, and Hall adds 2 more points to his impressive run.

NSOGDP: Because I promised my fiance that I would skip one of these games to spend an evening with her, I will miss what turns out to be the most exciting, gruelling game of this short season. Thinking I had lucked out choosing the Calgary match-up, I will end up ruing the decision after numerous glares across the living room for obsessively checking scores, shot totals, etc...

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#41 PapaMike
April 04 2013, 11:02AM
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Mirror Mirror, indeed! 6 game winning streak, check. Meaningful games in April check. Hall in top ten scoring check. Regardless of if we make the playoffs or not, this is fun!

PS. I want to me that mirror!

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#42 I tried it at home
April 04 2013, 11:17AM
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Im not saying it would happen, but out of curiouslty, could Horcoff take Bieksa in a good ol' fashioned Drop The Gloves waltz? Ive seen the man, he's not exactly small, has shown heart and is a fitness nut. I know he's not a fighter per se, but it certainly would go a long ways to cementing his legacy as Captain of the Oilers.

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#43 Eddie Edmonton
April 04 2013, 11:18AM
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Yakupov's first goal last night was sick. He smacks the sh!t out of the rotating puck before it even hits the ice.

I like the maturity the Oilers showed in the goal celebrations once they realized they were playing with a dead horse.

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#44 Eddie Edmonton
April 04 2013, 11:23AM
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I tried it at home wrote:

Im not saying it would happen, but out of curiouslty, could Horcoff take Bieksa in a good ol' fashioned Drop The Gloves waltz? Ive seen the man, he's not exactly small, has shown heart and is a fitness nut. I know he's not a fighter per se, but it certainly would go a long ways to cementing his legacy as Captain of the Oilers.

The only concern with that is the recovery time if something was to happen to the entity that is Horcoff's nose. JJ

Bieksa is a goof.

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#45 Czar
April 04 2013, 11:39AM
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•The Oilers are 8-2-2 since Shawn Horcoff called a player's only meeting

That's about the same time the new Nation Gear came out,coincidence? I think not!

Bieksa is a D-Bag!

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#46 Romulus' Apotheosis
April 04 2013, 12:14PM
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http://oilers.nhl.com/club/player.htm?id=8474602&season=20122013&view=gamelog

it's not a difficult stats matter to see who 19 has scored against. Doesn't seem to have any trouble against the top teams in the west to me.

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#47 Mac962
April 04 2013, 12:16PM
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Sorry for the grammer - cant type - dog bit my finger taking his bone away... do i blame him ? nope.

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#48 Romulus' Apotheosis
April 04 2013, 12:16PM
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The playoffs are still a huge longshot. keep your enthusiasms in check, but enjoy them.

a win tonight would be huge.

also... the Oil will never have a calder. the league will never let them have all the major awards.

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#49 oilerjed
April 04 2013, 12:36PM
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It was also the goaltending that helped them get into the spot they are in was it not? I wouldnt be giving any Hitchcock team to much credit unless its your bag to watch slow boring hockey with out a pulse. Same for the Nucks, no scoring, ok d, and good-great goaltending. You give to much credit to these teams and not paying close enough attention to what is going on NOW. Get with the program DSF or get the *&%^ off the bus.

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#50 Romulus' Apotheosis
April 04 2013, 12:47PM
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oilerjed wrote:

It was also the goaltending that helped them get into the spot they are in was it not? I wouldnt be giving any Hitchcock team to much credit unless its your bag to watch slow boring hockey with out a pulse. Same for the Nucks, no scoring, ok d, and good-great goaltending. You give to much credit to these teams and not paying close enough attention to what is going on NOW. Get with the program DSF or get the *&%^ off the bus.

no, no, no... a thousand nos.

look where they are in shots for % (3rd overall)

http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201213&sit=5v5&sort=SFPCT&sortdir=DESC

goals for % (12th overall)

http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201213&sit=5v5&sort=GFPCT&sortdir=DESC

shooting % (11th)

http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201213&sit=5v5&sort=SHPCT&sortdir=DESC

save % (28th)

http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201213&sit=5v5&sort=SVPCT&sortdir=DESC

They are in the spot they are DESPITE well below average goaltending.

for reference last year their save % was 1st overall:

http://stats.hockeyanalysis.com/teamstats.php?disp=1&db=201112&sit=5v5&sort=SVPCT&sortdir=DESC

that's the difference. it makes all the world.

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