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 Team 1260.
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#1 DrDave
March 01 2014, 11:25AM
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I feel so depressed reading all these comments. Yes I agree that the Oilers suck and have sucked since Miley was Hanna but come on!!! ITS THE F#CKING FLAMES WE ARE PLAYING!!! If I learned anything from my childhood it was my ABCs. ANYONE BUT CALGARY!!! So even if it's just for tonight, I need everyone to scoop the sand out of your collective lady parts and cheer for a win tonight! F#CK CALGARY!!!

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#2 Jeffff
March 01 2014, 10:09AM
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I can't believe fans like olympic hockey it was slow and boring for the most part. Loads of dead space on the ice.

Inferior teams played traps it reminded me of Soccer. Yes an acquired taste. But North Americans who find Olympic hockey exciting have not watched the NHL playoffs.

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#3 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 01 2014, 10:52PM
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Willi P wrote:

Yes, thankfully not. Monahan is already much more mature and a team guy.

I won't disagree, Hall seems like a manchild. But Monahan will never come close to Hall at their respective peaks.

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#4 Harry
March 02 2014, 11:44AM
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Simple question everyone. Would you trade Eberle straight up for Wayne Simmonds.

Trash for no. Prop for yes

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#5 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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#6 SlapSchtick4
March 01 2014, 10:42PM
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Pretty obvious tonight... our flames are the worst team in the league... despite the even score. Just further proof that teams play down to the flames, not that the flames play up to the competition. This organization and its composition is based solely on other teams effort... period. These boys try hard, but they suck balls. Time to actually start the rebuild, instead of simply tread water...as is the Calgary way.

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#7 Walter White
March 01 2014, 12:23PM
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He Who Knows wrote:

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.

Technically Yak does not really count as a first overall pick; none of the teams picking top 5 this year would trade their pick for him, and this is not even a good draft year.

Nice drafting Oil........

WW

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#8 Oiler Al
March 01 2014, 11:36PM
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What are all these cow pies doing on the Oiler Nation. Dont you guys have your own site.

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#9 kittensandcookies
March 01 2014, 08:45PM
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Jesus the only thing that's easier than entering the Oilers zone is Ryan Nugent Hopkins' mom.

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#10 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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#11 Jeffff
March 01 2014, 10:28AM
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Spydyr wrote:

If playing sound defensive hockey bores you it is a good thing you are an Oilers fan.

From the very first game on I was impressed with Team Canada every player made the right play at the right time it was almost surreal. Throughout the entire tournament Canada"s players were always on the right side of the puck and man defensively.The entire team made no more than a handful of errors the entire tournament.

It was amazing to watch.That team was the best coached ,best defensive hockey team I have ever witnessed.

Perhaps the best hockey team in history.

Sounds like you were mimicking some sportswriter . I find the big ice mostly boring.

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#12 prendrefeu
March 01 2014, 10:43PM
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Monahan > any of the Oiler's 1st round drafts for the past 4 years.

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#13 Zarny
March 02 2014, 01:52PM
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Enjoyed the gold medal game in the Bahamas and come back to the same drivel about coaching.

Yes, the US and Sweden were muted by Canada's "systems" not one of the sexiest bluelines in history. Babcock is truly a virtuoso on a magic marker board.

Hitchcock's 'x' at 3:43 of the 3rd period was surely the key to shutting down Kessel; not the ability of the players to win virtually every 1 on 1 battle, or their dedication and commitment to not cheat the system and play as a unit.

If only the Russians knew the secret was an excitable coach who makes lots of facial expressions after every goal.

Surely a better coach and a marker set with more colors would have convinced all of Russia's highly skilled and very similar forwards to play less like individuals and not cheat for offense. Belov and Markov could have been a shutdown tandem for the ages if only they had better systems.

Curious after Crosby and Poulin's goals how Babcock and Dineen casually walked down the bench without a twitch of expression. Imagine their potential if they learned to lose their composure and imitate someone with tourettes.

And what was with Toews and Crosby praising the commitment and work ethic of the players to be disciplined and responsible instead paying full homage to the coaching staff's "systems"? Without Hitchcock there is no way Crosby could have been that defensively responsible. Jon and Sid made it sound like players make decisions on the ice or something. Crazy talk.

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#14 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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#15 Dc
March 01 2014, 11:39AM
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Oilers suck but I still hope they get away from ekblad by winning a few games.

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#16 Bean-counting cowboy
March 01 2014, 10:00AM
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O.K. Oil. Could you please win this game and maybe... just maybe get on a bit of a run and pass us in the standings?

It's not fair that you get all the top picks every year. It's good to share with others too you know.

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#17 Loweblows
March 01 2014, 10:23AM
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I hope we get blown out tonight. I hope Calgary scores lots of goals and CBC zooms in on Eakins with his blowing cheeks vacant eyes look. And furthermore I truly hope this is the last straw for Eakins. Anyone who supports Eakins is NOT a knowledgable fan. As an earlier poster said it right. It's wrong to keep Eakins for the sake of continuity. The longer this clown is around the deeper the damage. Eakins lovers can kiss my a&&.

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#18 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 01 2014, 11:03PM
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@beloch

Who's been in the same PPG range as Crosby/Toews/Malkin/et al the last three years?

Again, don't get me wrong, I'd slay to have Monahan on the Oil. And I'm not trying to defend the Oilers either, what with our recent record.

But if you've got the fist overall and it's down to Hall or Monahan, you take Hall every time. That being said, I'll throw you Gags and Eberle for Monahan.

Let's get it done, you filthy Flamers.

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#19 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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#20 Zamboni Driver
March 01 2014, 10:17AM
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If only there could be more ridiculous Corsi nonsense to demonstrate that this will be a terrible game, again on national TV, oh boy.

And WEEEEE I am going.

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#21 geoilersgist
March 01 2014, 08:12PM
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Gotta get this in before puck drop #EatSh!tFlames

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#22 bazmagoo
March 02 2014, 12:23AM
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@Rod from Viking

Would like to think MacT's value is far less as well. Only a matter of time before he takes a bullet for that decision too. It's a shame though, I think MacT has done pretty well in the GM department.

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#23 cccsberg
March 02 2014, 08:42AM
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40 Double D wrote:

It's clear Eakins can't coach in the NHL. He wants the players to play his system but they're not built to win 1-0 games. He doesn't have the personnel to play that style. Krueger was more successful because he played a system according to their strengths. If a newbie fan was watching the Oil play under this system, they would never know that Hall, RNH, and Yak were 1st overall picks.

1. the same as Krueger, Renney and so on also can't coach in the NHL. Not saying he's the best, or even defending him, but seriously, when is Edmonton going to recognize and accept that ITS the PLAYERS!

2. Sure if we were playing Junior/World Juniors here the Halls and Eberle's are Superstars, but we're not. And the problem with the Oilers, amongst many, are that these guys have not progressed beyond that style, unable or unwilling to be coached and learn. Get rid of some of the "core' and get some NHL team players!

3. In other, earlier posts were some comments about Mohan vs. the Oilers "stars". Now Monohan's just starting and no one is sure what he'll become so I'm not saying he'll be the greatest, but I sure am liking what I'm seeing so far. Watching them all kind of reminds me of a skills comparison comparison between Ovechkin and Toews. Ovie is super-talented, great offensive player, but one-dimensional. Toews also great on offence, but also great on defence, face-offs, leadership and team play. Ovie can draw crowds with his sic skills and make highlight reels, but Toews draws Cups and Championships with his sic, but less-visible skills.

4. Overall getting sad to see Edmonton play. No fire in the kids at all. Given up. Unwilling to listen and learn. Waste of a lot of talent....

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#24 book¡e
March 01 2014, 10:21AM
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LT does not understand the GDP, OGDP, NOGDP. How can you predict a 1-1 tie with Smid getting 5 goals.

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#25 Butters
March 02 2014, 11:56AM
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Harry wrote:

I can see Eakins getting the rest of the season then 20 games next year. If he sh'ts the bed after Macs supposed bold roster makeover during that 20 game stretch hes FIIIIIIIIRRRED!!

MacT has dialed down the bold moves talk. I suspect he is learning on the job. The cap will go up, and there isn't much out there. Let the other teams massively overpay for garbage. We will likely be in the running for McDavid next year That's both good and bad I suppose.

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#26 Spydyr
March 01 2014, 10:06AM
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With the season almost over here are some ideas to replace the memory of past glory wall Eakins had taken down:

1) A picture of Dubnyk with the red light going off behind him after he was scored on from centre ice.

2) A picture of Eberle dogging it on the backsheck.

3) A picture of a failed Hall toe drag.

4)A close up shot of Gagner's pants covered in snow.

5)A picture of the six rings press conference.

Good times.

Feel free to add your own favourite moments.Lets fill up the wall again.

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#27 Spydyr
March 01 2014, 10:30AM
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Jeffff wrote:

Sounds like you were mimicking some sportswriter . I find the big ice mostly boring.

"Sounds like you were mimicking some sportswriter"

Perhaps it is just people that understand the game have the same opinion.

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#28 Jeff In Lethbridge
March 01 2014, 12:11PM
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The Flames have at least shown up and battled on 90% of the nights, in spite of having to play through significant injuries all year and constant trade rumors and icing two non-hockey players every night.

Edmonton smells like sweat.

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#29 Bryzarro World
March 01 2014, 07:25PM
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What's so hard to understand? You all need to listen to gregor because apparently the public are idiots and only he knows what the real deal is.....

Dallas is great, macT is great and i heard him say kBlowe tastes like cotton candy....

Press pass pandering

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#30 Rod from Viking
March 01 2014, 07:40PM
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Bryzarro World wrote:

What's so hard to understand? You all need to listen to gregor because apparently the public are idiots and only he knows what the real deal is.....

Dallas is great, macT is great and i heard him say kBlowe tastes like cotton candy....

Press pass pandering

I propped and agreed with most of your points on your posts on Jason's last article but your comment about the candy is quite over the line in my book, we all post things we sometimes regret and I think you are way better than that and didn't mean it.

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#31 Dave
March 01 2014, 08:44PM
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RKD wrote:

Three more goals and Monahan will have 20 in his rookie year.

Wish the oilers could draft good quality players like that

How about a trade of Monahan for RNH?

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#32 ?
March 02 2014, 12:46AM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Who's been in the same PPG range as Crosby/Toews/Malkin/et al the last three years?

Again, don't get me wrong, I'd slay to have Monahan on the Oil. And I'm not trying to defend the Oilers either, what with our recent record.

But if you've got the fist overall and it's down to Hall or Monahan, you take Hall every time. That being said, I'll throw you Gags and Eberle for Monahan.

Let's get it done, you filthy Flamers.

I would actually tend to agree. Hall brings the offence, Monahan brings a 2 way ability.

No to the trade proposal though :)

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#33 Spydyr
March 01 2014, 10:19AM
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Jeffff wrote:

I can't believe fans like olympic hockey it was slow and boring for the most part. Loads of dead space on the ice.

Inferior teams played traps it reminded me of Soccer. Yes an acquired taste. But North Americans who find Olympic hockey exciting have not watched the NHL playoffs.

If playing sound defensive hockey bores you it is a good thing you are an Oilers fan.

From the very first game on I was impressed with Team Canada every player made the right play at the right time it was almost surreal. Throughout the entire tournament Canada"s players were always on the right side of the puck and man defensively.The entire team made no more than a handful of errors the entire tournament.

It was amazing to watch.That team was the best coached ,best defensive hockey team I have ever witnessed.

Perhaps the best hockey team in history.

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#34 Rod from Viking
March 01 2014, 10:03PM
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On the bright side Marincin is having a good game.

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#35 Willi P
March 01 2014, 10:49PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

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

Yes, thankfully not. Monahan is already much more mature and a team guy.

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#36 40 Double D
March 01 2014, 11:40PM
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It's clear Eakins can't coach in the NHL. He wants the players to play his system but they're not built to win 1-0 games. He doesn't have the personnel to play that style. Krueger was more successful because he played a system according to their strengths. If a newbie fan was watching the Oil play under this system, they would never know that Hall, RNH, and Yak were 1st overall picks.

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#37 Butters
March 02 2014, 12:20PM
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Harry wrote:

This mess is not going to be fixed through free agency or the draft. MacT has to pull his balls out from his wifes purse and make a big trade this offseason.

Trade whom? This team need D. They do not have a any redundancy at forward except for Hemsky, and I am not sure they will get a lot for him. If you think they need to change the makeup of the forwards it might help, but the holes are in the D imho.

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#38 D
March 01 2014, 09:57AM
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The Flames have heart. The Oilers...

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#39 Randaman
March 01 2014, 10:06AM
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There is one good thing at least for this snore fest. CBC has no problem calling a spade a spade unlike the Sportsnet puppets. The bad side of this is listening to Hrudey for 2.5 hours. I hope Katz is watching from the bat cave as we get our asses beat again tonight. Would that force change? Thought not

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#40 Chambers
March 01 2014, 07:51PM
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Walter White wrote:

Technically Yak does not really count as a first overall pick; none of the teams picking top 5 this year would trade their pick for him, and this is not even a good draft year.

Nice drafting Oil........

WW

WW...I agree with your post. The trashes you are getting are from Oiler fans whom like Lowe and MacT have overvalued there assets. They want top talent in return for Hemsky and Gagne who are worth no more than a 2-3 round draft pick.. They want Shea Weber but are not willing to give Eberle and TH in return. Personally i doubt Nashville would even go for that deal.

Oiler management with 6 ring and pro hockey player backgrounds simply do not have the management ability to assess talent relevant to market and make the big deal. Tim Murray in Buffalo has done more in 2 months to rebuild the Sabres than Lowe has done in 7 years.

Oiler fans deserve better!

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#41 Riptide
March 01 2014, 11:23PM
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clyde wrote:

Flames fans are happy for that.

It was the Flames reward for tanking last season while Edmonton won meaningless games at the end.

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#42 Rama Lama
March 02 2014, 11:25AM
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Like I have said before, our BEST chance of landing Ekblad is Eakins.

There are many writers that state Coaching is not our problem, they keep shoving their collective heads in the sand deeper and deeper hoping that something will change to prove their point.

Just how many first round draft choices/player changes are required before everyone agrees that Coaching is currently our biggest problem.

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#43 Kent Wilson
March 01 2014, 10:29AM
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This is by far the nicest cross-posted gameday thread in the history of the Nations. Someone needs to get the trash talk flowing. Where's Wanye?

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#44 SmellOfVictory
March 01 2014, 11:51AM
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6 ring circus wrote:

I would rather watch Kevin Lowe and Brian Burke in a steel cage match at center ice,the winner gets the other teams first overall pick.

I support this. Burke would clean Lowe's clock. Haha

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#45 hockey fan 1976
March 01 2014, 12:57PM
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Its so funny to hear fans and commentators on the how Soilers need to go after Webber hard this off-season...bottom line is a) our scouting and GM have been horrible for over 10 years. if they were good at their jobs, why were Kessler, Perry and our so desired Stud D-man overlooked well into the 2nd round of the 2003 draft. Bottom line is, we have picked "offensive" softies who can't back check because they are too good to for that, and meanwhile, 3 latest Olympians included the best D-man in the world were not picked 11 years ago. We are getting what we deserved since we prefer to deal with the "boys on the bus" rather than competent hockey minds.

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#46 chambers
March 01 2014, 02:28PM
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M22 wrote:

Whew!!

-said Tavares/Stamkos/Mackinnon

This post is an excellent example of what's happened to the Oiler fans after 7 years of continuous losing...they have lost there perspective of pro sports. To the Oiler fans it's not about winning it's about draft position.

What a pathetic situation they are in. And I really don't see anything changing in the next several years as they need another major rebuild! Not only is the chronic mind set of the players on losing but the fans as well.

Sad.

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#47 Chambers
March 01 2014, 04:59PM
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tabs wrote:

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.

Read my lips....if you want to obtain quality players you need to trade your core young guys like Eberle, RNH, TH and Yak. You are dreaming just like Lowe and MacT if you think other teams want the GARBAGE you suggest! In fact the core young guys I named are over rated. Get over it! You can't have your cake and eat it too!!!!

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#48 bulldog12
March 01 2014, 09:57PM
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Hemskys lighten er up now. The 1st lines been on fire since he moved up. The whole team has been on fire since they changed up the lines. Wednesday can't come soon enough. Please please please if there is a hockey God put Hemsky on a plane to anywhere.

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#49 RKD
March 01 2014, 10:42PM
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Battle of Ontario went to overtime now the Battle of Alberta goes to overtime, HNIC can't write better scripts than these. They must be loving it.

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#50 john
March 02 2014, 02:12AM
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bazmagoo wrote:

I've said it since about game 10, but I really think the Oilers players gave up early on playing for Eakins. I think it's possible the breaking point was likely the treatment of Yakupov early in the season, imo.

The players were all gifted long term 42 million dollar contracts, can't really blame them for thinking they are in charge.

Unfortunately for Eakins his value is far less than the young guns, bit of a mismatch really.

Eakins is not a player coach, it's his style and his way or the hiway. Talented players doesn't like to play for him, Eakins like plumbers and grinding players, he like the career AHL players. Eakins pissed Kadri off in Toronto, he called him fat and over weight. Eakins now running Yakupov out of town in Edmonton too. Eakins took old Oilers team photos off dressing room (Gretzky, Messier are god there) so now this team has noone to look up to. Eakins took away the donuts and goodies, then kids love junk foods. Watch what Eakins does not what Eakins says, he's all talk but he can't deliver. Eakins does not compromise, players will not play for him. You can see the body language of their plays on the ice after the first 10 games.

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