GDB: BATTLE OF ALBERTA

Lowetide
March 01 2014 09:50AM


800px-Bench_Pigeon_Lake_Alberta_Canada_02A

It's an ill will she blows this morning, ladies and men. We are stone cold frozen, indoors, outdoors and in the western conference. The blues aren't blue enough, the country tear-jerkers can't find the lines, the poets can't stop the clocks in rhyme. 

The Battle of Alberta is desolation row. 

BUT WE'LL GET THERE BEFORE THEM!

bubbling under

Really? REALLY? The tortoise and the hare had a point to their story, I'm not sure 'one frozen bubble against another one' will galvanize our collective spirits in Alberta province. 

Is there ANY good news? And don't tell me the draft! 

CALGARY FLAMES PROJECTED LINEUP

  • TJ Galiardi-Mikael Backlund-Jiri Hudler
  • Mike Cammalleri-Sean Monahan-Joe Colborne
  • Lance Bouma-Matt Stajan-David Jones
  • Paul Byron-Markus Granlund-Kevin Westgarth
  • TJ Brodie-Mark Giordano
  • Kris Russell-Derek Smith
  • Ladislav Smid-Dennis Wideman
  • Reto Berra

The Flames have some good hockey players heading out tonight, and some of them will be playing their last game with the fiery C. Mike Cammalleri should get significant interest, young Backlund has once again overcome major obstacles and the all-Canadian Monahan looks sharp in every photo. The Flames Corsi for % 5x5 is 45.2%, fourth worst in the league but there are some champions in the group:

  • Galiardi 50.8%
  • Giordano 50.5%
  • Backlund 49.4%
  • Brodie 49.3%
  • Cammalleri 49.2%

The complete list is here   and it is worth noting Calgary has only three position players who have been on the ice for more than 300 minutes while posting a sub 43% Corsi for 5x5 %. 

lake wabamun

EDMONTON OILERS PROJECTED LINEUP

  • Hall-Nuge-Hemsky
  • Perron-Gagner-Eberle
  • Hendricks-Gordon-Joensuu
  • Jones-Smyth-Gazdic
  • Marincin-Petry
  • N Schultz-J Schultz
  • Ference-Belov
  • Bryzgalov

Nail Yakupov's injury isn't considered serious, but it's also likely they hold him back for tonight's game. Do the Oilers have some good news, something similar to the Flames' men who are close to 50% or better Corsi for 5x5?

The Oilers Corsi for 5x5% is 43.3%, they are one below Calgary in the race (don't you laugh, Toronto  only Buffalo saves you!)

  • Martin Marincin 50.2%

The numbers are here.  Edmonton has five players who have been on the ice for more than 300 minutes while also posting a sub 43% Corsi for 5x5 %.


SOME SWEET DAY

lake louise

History tells us this will not last. Calgary will have a fine trade deadline, add some picks and prospects and live to fight another day. Edmonton appears to have invested heavily in hiring a new coach each season, so the only impressive thing is the number of first overall selections on their roster. 

Calgary and Edmonton are driving toward that goal this summer, first overall. In that race, Edmonton is judge, jury and executioner. For Oiler fans, the promise of a first overall pick is like a kick in the junk, a stomach turner, a false spring. 

The Flames should learn the lesson presented to them by Edmonton—it's pretty damn hard to come back quickly from scorched earth, even when good soil lies all about you. 

GAME DAY PREDICTION: Flames and Oilers play to a 1-1 tie and no one can score in the shootout. Finally, Ladislav Smid drives in over the blueline and goes shelf on a very surprised Ilya Bryzgalov.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Flames win 5-1, on 5 shorthanded goals. All by Smid. 

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: CBC's After Hours becomes trade central as both Mike Cammalleri and Ales Hemsky are sent to Pittsburgh right after the game. 

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Lowetide has been one of the Oilogosphere's shining lights for over a century. You can check him out here at OilersNation and at lowetide.ca. He is also the host of Lowdown with Lowetide weekday mornings 10-noon on TSN 1260.
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#101 Hockeyfan 1976
March 01 2014, 09:59PM
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Anyone else noticed that you see more of Eberle on TV commercials than him doing anything on the ice?

Hahahaah, this team is such a f@&(" joke.

Turning this crap off, as sleep is worth more than watching Calgary showing us how to play with any heart.

What do you call a 16 million investment with 0 return? Our first line.

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#102 Kevin
March 01 2014, 10:38PM
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RexHolez wrote:

Arnt we already setting NHL records for futility?? The oilers are a pathetic excuse for a "professional" team... Most oiler fans realize this

Even more pathetic is the 17000 fans that show up to line Katz's pockets

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#103 Robert Fraser
March 01 2014, 10:40PM
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Kevin wrote:

Even more pathetic is the 17000 fans that show up to line Katz's pockets

Suckers R Us sums it up nicely.

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#104 Ivan Drago
March 01 2014, 11:17PM
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What's worrying me now, is that the Oilers have regressed considerably in most aspects of the game this season. Coaching blames it on the players being too slow too pick up his systems. They should either have them down by now or maybe they just don't work. Yet it seems they are set on 'continuity' next season regardless of how bad this one goes.

What if Eakins just cant coach? How many seasons of our young players careers will we lose finding out?

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#105 bazmagoo
March 02 2014, 12:21AM
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@Dan

I'm a pretty old school hockey guy, but I have to ask is anyone else done with the staged fights? I love me some high energy, high tempo, physical hockey. When that naturally evolves into a fight there is nothing quite as electric. But the whole goon role, staged fights really does nothing for me these days.

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#106 T&A4Flames
March 02 2014, 10:09AM
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You guys don't even bother posting post-game blogs anymore?

It's pretty easy to copy-and-paste.

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#107 Edsez
March 01 2014, 12:00PM
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It's cold as ice here but it's warming up in OKC with the Barons making a charge and Arcobello showing that he wants back in the bigs going 5G 9A - 14Pts in 7GP since being sent down.

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#108 Hockey Problems
March 01 2014, 01:10PM
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Thumby wrote:

If Eakins goes, who is on everyone's wish list for an available head coach?

You could let the team play without a coach, the results would not be much different.

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#109 RexHolez
March 01 2014, 10:51PM
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prendrefeu wrote:

Monahan > any of the Oiler's 1st round drafts for the past 4 years.

Eberle and Gagner for Monahan.... Anyday

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#110 The War Amp Champ
March 02 2014, 01:22AM
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The Oilers Suck Worse Than This Cold Snap and this cold snap really blows. I mean like honestly its horrible, you can't do anything can't even hack a dart without freezing to death in 30 seconds, vehicles wont start without being plugged in, homeless people are in grave danger of dieing from hypothermia, water mains are bursting around the city its complete and udder misery! But.... still better than the oilers because K Lowe and the old boys on the bus are not in charge of the weather so I have faith that it will get better eventually! Unlike the sad state of our blessed hockey team whom are stuck in a cellar vortex with no heat wave in site :( FML

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#111 Randaman
March 02 2014, 11:34AM
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Batfink wrote:

You can always tell when the Oilers have shown another indefensibly terrible game, it takes ages for a new article to be posted. Must be looking for more lipstick to put on this particular pig.

Why write anything negative and risk losing your press pass? Lowetide is the exception but he probably requires a day to absorb the unreal level of PATHETIC that we are witnessing. Eberle needs to be moved ASAP! The disappearing act he pulls in most games is absolutely incredible. He is driving his value down so fast he looks like a Blackberry. They need to split up the coach killing clique that is very obvious. By no means am I giving Eakins a pass either. Show him the door along with the entire staff. That should be done the minute this Dabocle of a season is over!! No wonder Hemsky is so excited to be getting out! I hope for his sake it happens. If you were Scrivens would you resign here the way things are. MacT is at a disadvantage here because Scrivens is smart enough to see through his bull$h!t propaganda. Enough for today, I feel a headache coming on

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#112 tyler
March 01 2014, 10:02AM
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I think I would rather go outside and toboggan tonight than watch this game....less painful. Man olympics were great, was nice to watch a game i didnt want to turn off after 20 mins. Get well soon oilers.

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#113 Retsinnab5
March 01 2014, 10:17AM
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If the Oilers don't show some heart in this game, then i'm not sure they ever will.

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#114 Greg
March 01 2014, 11:05AM
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favourite Battle of Alberta moment?

i remember this one time at Rexall... wait

i remember this one time at Skyreach... wait

... never mind

all kidding aside, "The Battle of Alberta" is a long, long way from two teams trying to prove that they not only were they the best team in the league, but the planet. those days are long gone.

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#115 Wanye
March 01 2014, 11:41AM
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This is very well written LT.

*returns to his Mexico City underground bunker with his beloved jars of wee*

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#116 Tuningout
March 01 2014, 12:41PM
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RexHolez wrote:

Is Ralph Krueger available?

If next year the Oiler coaches were Renney and Krueger I would be so happy. What a mistake.

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#117 Randaman
March 01 2014, 04:48PM
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Be prepared for some pretty harsh critisism tonight. Glenn Healy is in the house. He likes to tell it like it is and isn't afraid of Six Rings or MacT. Give it to em Healy

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#118 Mason Storm
March 01 2014, 08:40PM
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Rod from Viking wrote:

How come the Oilers are the only team in the league that doesn't gain momentum when their role players do their job.

Probably a divided locker room. Bottom 6 scratch and claw for ice time and the top 6 have been spoon fed ice time all year, even when they show no effort

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#119 RexHolez
March 01 2014, 08:42PM
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Rod from Viking wrote:

How come the Oilers are the only team in the league that doesn't gain momentum when their role players do their job.

Good question!! If you listen to edmonton media the oilers have 4 players that will challenge to make the next Olympic team for canada. What they don't tell you is it will be for figure skating.

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#120 The Soup Fascist
March 01 2014, 09:40PM
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I don't think there is anyone I dislike more than Glenn Healey. What a twerp.

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#121 Stack Pad Save
March 01 2014, 11:02PM
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Did I watch this game from my closet? Can I still proudly wear the sweater? Will this team ever not suck? Fire everyone, rebuild the rebuilt rebuild.

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#122 Jackson
March 02 2014, 12:47PM
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Everybody talking about trades and draft. Oilers are not an NHL team. They have not been for years. Go ahead defend MacT , Klowe , Eakins and other coaches. This is a horrible organization if it was a business it would have gone bankrupt years ago. Fans continue to support this team so it survives.

Their MO has always been fire someone and the rebuild starts again after they are fired. All I know Edmonton has been the worst team in the NHL for the last 8 years.

You could have #1 draft picks for 10 years, with this management Oilers are going nowhere. They ruin players. This would be the last place I would want to come if I was a draft pick.

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#123 Randaman
March 01 2014, 11:51AM
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Thumby wrote:

If Eakins goes, who is on everyone's wish list for an available head coach?

Nolan if Buffalo is stupid enough to not extend him, Guy Boucher, Peter Laviolette, Brent Sutter, Kevin Dineen and I am sure there will be more available by seasons end.

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#124 admiralmark
March 01 2014, 03:04PM
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Rick Stroppel wrote:

"BOLD MOVES" STRIKES AGAIN!

I think you missed the news that Chris Stewart was traded to Buffalo as part of the Miller trade. Stewart is 6'2", 231 lbs, he has averaged about 50 points a year through his NHL career, and he is signed through next season for 4.2 million.

IMHO, it is amazing what Buffalo got for Miller.

In the meantime Bold Moves is working on trades likethis:

Hemsky for 2 or 3 round.

Career second string goalie for prospect (or vice versa).

Fourth round pick (do they still have one?) for # 6 defenceman (or vice versa).

Fourth line forward for prospect (or vice versa).

Etc., etc., etc. And then the reporters will tell the fans that they need to be happy, happy, happy because MacTavish has made MORE TRADES than anyone else.

No i didn't miss the trade news. Perhaps you missed the news that Buffalo was open to flipping Stewart to another team? And of course as an Oiler fan I cant help but dream of some functional toughness in the top 6. Simmonds/Stewart a fan can dream can't he?

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#125 merfer
March 01 2014, 09:34PM
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Where is our second line? Has Gagner even touched the puck tonight. Good effort from Perron but it really looks like Gagner has checked out and is ready to report to another team.

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#126 Dave
March 01 2014, 10:10PM
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Didn't Rob Brown say on the radio that if the oilers don't come out tonight with a good game that somthing is broken.... Well somthing is broken

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#127 Max
March 02 2014, 10:51AM
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Another post game breakfast, doing the post mortem. Certain words come to me - pathetic, apathetic, disinterested, lackadaisical, bored, and this was the team. Then we hear the coach putting his slant on everything. Is he bipolar? defend, defend, defend - now offense & score score score. Add confused to the team attributed words. I think the biggest mistake ever was the not try the Renney/Krueger tandem for another couple of years - we would be a lot closer to the playoffs with them. Sometimes humble pie has to be eaten, head coach needs to go, NOW, another sorry page from the Oilers' Doomsday Book.

My own 3 words? Totally p***ed off.

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#128 Harry
March 02 2014, 11:52AM
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Rama Lama wrote:

Harry you need to go to the light!

Im watching this phlyers caps game and ill tell ya something. a second line with perron and simmonds on the wings centered by anyone not named gagner would be awesome!!

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#129 tabs
March 01 2014, 10:46AM
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Don't care any more, hope they lose again tonight.

I want Eakins gone by seasons end along with Gagner, Smyth, Hemsky and half the defense.

GDP Oilers win 4-2 and end the season with one point more than the Flames.

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#130 admiralmark
March 01 2014, 01:02PM
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Tuningout wrote:

If next year the Oiler coaches were Renney and Krueger I would be so happy. What a mistake.

This made me laugh and then cry. Krueger especially got a raw deal.

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#131 PimKing
March 01 2014, 03:14PM
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At the point where I don't care who goes out the door, as long as a 1 D-man comes in. I mean this is a joke to anyone watching these games who grew up playing hockey here in AB or any fan who really knows what they are looking at. J.Schultz is absolutely terrified and a complete starts with a V, ends with an A, and in the middle is "agin". No purpose to his game whatsoever never seen someone meander up the ice like that just to pass the buck to someone else last second who is now also covered. Has he ever drivin the puck down past the ringette line? Sooooffffffft. Like a pink marshmallow. A little bunny one. Shoot me. You can even use my gun. Thank Jebus for that Olympic break, I couldn't take anymore.

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#132 Loweblows
March 01 2014, 08:31PM
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Monaghan scores- game over! Then we send out Gazdic - who effin cares anymore! Oilers are a sideshow!

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#133 Kent Wilson
March 01 2014, 08:44PM
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@negrilcowboy

I hope he's okay. I hope he doesn't play for the Flames again as well.

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#134 MontanaMan
March 01 2014, 09:34PM
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I hired a guy three years ago who was and is a huge Oiler fan. Three years ago his line was "the Oilers have something the Flames don't have. Hope." Three years later? Not so much.

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#135 6 ring circus
March 01 2014, 09:35PM
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Memo to Mactavish;Send Eakins back to the AHL ,his coaching and systems are not suited for the NHL!!!

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#136 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 01 2014, 10:46PM
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prendrefeu wrote:

Monahan > any of the Oiler's 1st round drafts for the past 4 years.

As an Oilers fan, I'm bitterly jealous you shmucks got Monahan. But Taylor Hall, he is not.

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#137 beloch
March 01 2014, 10:55PM
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@Jordan Nugent-Hallkins

Hmmm... Who was on the ice and utterly embarassed when Monahan scored his first goal?

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#138 Rod from Viking
March 02 2014, 12:29AM
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@bazmagoo

I think Mac T has done ok as well, at least he is trying, the ego of Eakins and his "look at me and how smart I am crap has been old with the players and the fans since about when you said, also about when Smid was traded.

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#139 Bucknuck
March 02 2014, 01:43AM
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I just can't get too upset about the loss. I would prefer to pick before the Flames. :-)

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#140 Hoozonphirst
March 02 2014, 07:18AM
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Air on Egg blood wrote:

I have long been a disciple of getting Eakins some help by hiring an experienced associate coach. But honestly, I now think we are not one associate coach away from cleaning this mess. The entire coaching staff must be changed. And this time for the head-coaching job, MacT needs to interview more than one candidate.

The only help for Eakins and the Oil is ...help out the freaking door along with Sam Gone-yeah and about 6 or 8 assorted pieces of dead wood.

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#141 Fresh Mess
March 02 2014, 08:48AM
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There will be no better days ahead as long as the axis of evil (Katz,Lowe,Mactavish,Howson) run this team.

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#142 Retsinnab5
March 01 2014, 10:37AM
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Rob F wrote:

Just one correction.

You wrote, "With the season almost over"

The season was over in December. Just saying

Actual the season was over in November

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#143 He Who Knows
March 01 2014, 12:14PM
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Another 1st overall in E-town? 4 in 5 years? The hockey world is never going to let that go. Come to think of it the hockey world is already scorching us for the 3 number 1's. I just lost my appetite.

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#144 Gk1980
March 01 2014, 09:25PM
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Wow, just wow. These guys can't score. This team is lost. What is one thing these guys actually do well?

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#145 loweblows
March 02 2014, 09:52AM
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The CBC commentators noted how structured and fast paced the Flames practices were. The Oilers meanwhile had an optional skate. Kind of telling how far we are from having NHL caliber coaching and management. Sad when the highlight of any game is watching Mr. No- Donuts stare vacantly into space after every goal.

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#146 Batfink
March 02 2014, 10:23AM
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The Swarm wrote:

Did anyone else notice how often the Flames passed it back to the late man on the rush? I counted at least a half dozen grade-A chances as a result of this tactic.

Eakins, quite simply got out coached again, not only because Hartley exposed this weakness in the Oilers defensive "coverage", but because the Flames outworked the Oilers top 6 for much of the game.

Eakins has lost his top 6. The top 6 is not going anywhere. Eakins must go.

I predict that DE's Monday presser runs something along the lines of "I thought the guys were ready, obviously we have further to go, they need to learn how to play D, they are slowly getting it, some good things to take out....." Blah, blah, blah. Never his fault. Always "well, I never told them to lose!" Said it before, accountability starts at the top. When the players see and hear their coach throwing them under the bus after being out-coached, why should they take any responsibility for poor plays during the game?

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#147 Zamboni Driver
March 02 2014, 10:52AM
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Well, there were my two games of the year. On the positive side it was marginally more exciting than the Wild. Slightly more give-a-sh&t. Slightly.

By the by if you sat at home with your abacus and worked out the 'Corsi percentage' for that game last night, you are, in fact, a loser.

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#148 John
March 02 2014, 11:30AM
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Seriously how long are oiler fans gonna support this worthless wreckage of a team?? Have these empty & blank dreams of one day becoming relevant in the hockey world again blinded everyone from the reality that this rebuild simply isn't working?? Burn it down

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#149 Total Points
March 02 2014, 12:55PM
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I do not think that all of a sudden Hall, Eberle, Yak, RNH, do not know how to play hockey. They all adapted as they moved from Pee Wee to bantam to junior. Why are they not adapting to pro? It has a lot to do with coaching.

Mac and 6 rings would not hire a coach that they could not control such as Hitchcock or Carlyle. These coaches would help Hall, Eberle RNH adapt to pro hockey.

I hope Katz changes the upper management before they ruin the careers of these guys.

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#150 Zamboni Driver
March 01 2014, 10:33AM
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@Kent Wilson

Honestly, does anyone have the energy anymore?

My second cousin once-removed can whip your second cousin once-removed!

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