BOA Round 214: Flames at Oilers

Ryan Pike
March 22 2014 03:10PM

Ladies and gentlemen, tonight is the fifth meeting of the season (and 214th meeting overall) between the Calgary Flames and the Edmonton Oilers. It's their last meeting until next season, too. I'd say the season series is up for grabs, as each team has won twice - the road team always won - but the Flames needed overtime in both wins at Rexall. The Flames need a win to tie the season series in terms of points earned.

That's about as far as this game goes in terms of "significance."

Calgary has 63 points and 12 games left. Edmonton has 59 points and 11 games left. The gap can close considerably with an Edmonton win, while a Calgary win probably cements their draft placement.

THE HOME TEAM

It goes without saying that it's been a disappointing year in Edmonton. I don't think they spent time and money bringing in Dallas Eakins to lead the club to 29th place. The Oilers lost two nights ago to Buffalo, but have been playing solid lately, winning five of their last 10.

Lines, via Daily Faceoff:

Hall - Gagner - Perron
Lander - Nugent-Hopkins - Eberle
Hendricks - Gordon - Pitlick
Gazdic - Smyth - Jones

Ference - Schultz
Marincin - Petry
Klefbom - Fraser

Fasth

Viktor Fasth gets his first Battle of Alberta start. He was 2-0-0 with a shutout in two games against the Flames while with Anaheim.

The Oilers obviously have some skilled players (that top line, that second line) and are starting to figure out the "depth role player" riddle. That third line is actually pretty solid. But the defense is a bit dodgy, so you can figure out why they are in the general area that they are, standings-wise.

Oddly, Edmonton has the edge on Calgary on the power-play, the penalty kill and in five-on-five goal differential. How come Calgary's higher in the standings? Probably because Calgary's gotten some big contributions from their back-end (Giordano & Brodie, primarily) and some from their depth guys, while Edmonton remains top-heavy.

But if they can ever build something around that top group, wowzers. Granted, we've been saying this for years, but the Oilers could be scary-good if the guys building the team had a plan besides "draft high."

THE ROAD TEAM

The Flames are smarting a bit after last night. On one hand, they scored five goals! On the other, they gave up six. To Nashville, who rarely scores. Yikes.

Lines, via Daily Faceoff:

Cammalleri - Backlund - Byron
Glencross - Stajan - Hudler
Agostino - Monahan - Bouma
Westgarth - Colborne - McGrattan

Giordano - Brodie
Butler - Russell
Smid - Wotherspoon

Ramo

Karri Ramo returns after being out since before the Olympics with an MCL sprain. Joni Ortio returns to the AHL and Joey MacDonald is the back-up for the rest of the year.

Now that they're getting healthy, the Flames are rapidly beginning to resemble an NHL team. Kenny Agostino makes his Battle of Alberta debut after making his NHL debut last night, playing 12:40 in the loss to the Preds. Returning to the line-up is Kevin Westgarth - slotting in for T.J. Galiardi on the bottom line - and God, I hope Westgarth doesn't try to fight Gazdic again.

The Flames have also won five of their last ten games, so they're about as "hot" as the Edmonton Oilers right now.

SUM IT UP

It's a late-season game between two teams that are well out of the playoff picture! The best each club can hope for some emotion in this tilt, as each group tries to gain some momentum to close out the year.

Let's hope that this time next season, these games have a little bit more significance in the standings, because hockey's better when the Flames and Oilers are both doing well and Alberta is a place visiting teams fear to tread.

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Ryan Pike is a Calgary native and FlamesNation's managing editor. He's covered the Flames and the NHL since 2010. His work can also be found at The Hockey Writers and The Wrestling Observer.
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#151 Johnnydapunk
March 22 2014, 09:25PM
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Where is Berra when the Oil need him....

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#152 kale
March 22 2014, 09:25PM
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I really have got to turn on 630 ched to see how Stauffer spins this

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#153 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 09:26PM
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OK Eakins lovers.......is it time yet?

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#154 The Soup Fascist
March 22 2014, 09:26PM
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BurningSensation wrote:

You sir are an Oiler fan I could drink with

I started drinking about 8 minutes ago.

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#155 Burnward
March 22 2014, 09:26PM
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The Soup Fascist wrote:

As a longtime Oiler fan / Flame hater I don't think anyone minds a little joy in Matt Stajan's life.

God bless the Stajan family.

Amen brotha.

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#156 Anton (still waiting for playoffs)
March 22 2014, 09:26PM
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Make it 10! Make it 10!

Fire Eakins! Fire Eakins!

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#157 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 22 2014, 09:27PM
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@Rockmorton65

By this logic, no one entering the league after this season can fight. Flames fans.

Also, Gazdic would ragdoll you like a child. But everyone's ten feet tall and bulletproof behind the keyboard.

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#158 -30-
March 22 2014, 09:27PM
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Fire Eakins but keep Smith and Buchberger!

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#159 Chambers
March 22 2014, 09:28PM
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RexHolez wrote:

hey look, just when you think the oilers redefined the word pathetic, they dig up another rock and find a lower spot to sink to! im going to apply at rexall tomorrow, cuz if katz wont fire these guys I wont ever have to worry about job security

So will that make it 4 coaches in 5 years or 5 coaches in 6 years?

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#160 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 09:29PM
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Always likes the way glencross plays the game. Happy to see him back the knee injuries looked pretty bad. Goal scorers goal.

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#161 T&A4Flames
March 22 2014, 09:29PM
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drunken_Master wrote:

so.. i went to the washroom.. Came back and its 4-1!! wat the **** happened?!!!

CGY remembered EDM doesn't know how to play defence.

EDM remembered they don't know how to play hockey.

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#162 Primo
March 22 2014, 09:30PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

By this logic, no one entering the league after this season can fight. Flames fans.

Also, Gazdic would ragdoll you like a child. But everyone's ten feet tall and bulletproof behind the keyboard.

Vey sad when you have all the top level young talent and Gadzik is your hero! Very telling indeed!

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#163 kale
March 22 2014, 09:30PM
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Chambers wrote:

So will that make it 4 coaches in 5 years or 5 coaches in 6 years?

Hey you cant blame Oilers fans for Kevin Lowe, if we had our way he would have been gone long ago

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#164 Quintana
March 22 2014, 09:31PM
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@Anton (still waiting for playoffs)

Yakupovs -33 is the reason for this..............FIRE MR. FITNESS........................HES A CANCER.

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#165 Gk1980
March 22 2014, 09:31PM
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Why don't the d cover the boards and close the caps up? We give opposition way to much time! Is this coaching ornayers?

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#166 BingBong
March 22 2014, 09:32PM
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Why did we start Dubnyk tonight? I thought he was finally down in the AHL?

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#167 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 09:32PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

Always likes the way glencross plays the game. Happy to see him back the knee injuries looked pretty bad. Goal scorers goal.

Shut up

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#168 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 22 2014, 09:33PM
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@Primo

Again, I know most Flames fans don't actually possess the ability to read, but it's GAZDIC.

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#169 hall the time
March 22 2014, 09:33PM
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Oiler #goaliekillers its hard enough for the oil win when they haven't bin coached right all year but when the ref don't give the oil a few brakes its close to imposable. #newoilstaff

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#170 Burnward
March 22 2014, 09:34PM
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Every time I see a shot of Eakins on the bench I want someone to smack that smug look off his face.

You Oilers fans have to be losing your mind that he's still around.

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#171 beloch
March 22 2014, 09:34PM
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Whoever picks the music at Rexall is a freakin' sadist. Nobody deserves to be subjected to that kind of abuse.

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#172 -30-
March 22 2014, 09:35PM
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It all comes down to hard work and coaching. Guess which team has it and which doesn't?

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#173 Jackson
March 22 2014, 09:35PM
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This has been the team for 8 years and fans still believe . They have been the worst team in the NHL for 8 years, and fans are disappointed with this game. No wonder Lowe got a job.

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#174 Rockmorton65
March 22 2014, 09:35PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

By this logic, no one entering the league after this season can fight. Flames fans.

Also, Gazdic would ragdoll you like a child. But everyone's ten feet tall and bulletproof behind the keyboard.

Ha ha! That's your argument? Because he could beat me up, he's tough? That's not hard to do. I'm a lover, not a fighter.

BTW, Westgarth took a minor for roughing on the play. Had Gazik grown a pair, it would have been even up.

My logic stands up. If you fight, take off the visor, or pop the strap and let the first punch knock it off. There ARE ways around most rules. You don't have to hide behind them. Well, Gadzik does.

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#175 kale
March 22 2014, 09:36PM
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Flames may have more points but we got like way more moral victories, Eakins said so

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#176 Rick Stroppel
March 22 2014, 09:36PM
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Ari Gold wrote:

Lowe point of the Oilers season:

Their cheerleaders..

DO NOT PICK ON THE CHEERLEADERS

The Oilers Octane Girls are attractive young women. Unlike the Oilers players, they try hard every night.

Mr. Huge, on the other hand, does not resemble the picture attached to his post. In fact, he looks like the south end of a horse going north. Mr. Huge lives in his mother's basement. His girlfriend is inflatable, and he calls her "Palmella".

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#177 Clyde
March 22 2014, 09:36PM
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RexHolez wrote:

I hope youre not senile like cherry. Gazdic can either fight with the visor on, or take it off and take an extra 2minutes. we can maybe pool some donations together for special education for you if this is still going over your head. my cousin is retarded, I know how hard it can be

It was cherry and McLean plus others lately. No call in Winnipeg either.

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#178 T&A4Flames
March 22 2014, 09:37PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Again, I know most Flames fans don't actually possess the ability to read, but it's GAZDIC.

Who cares, he sucks!

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#179 Primo
March 22 2014, 09:37PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Again, I know most Flames fans don't actually possess the ability to read, but it's GAZDIC.

No it's GAZDICHEAD! The man with the VISOR protection.

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#180 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 09:37PM
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This was the last easy game the oil had on the schedule. Only Vancouver is not in the playoffs in the remaining nine. Difficult to see how they get more than a couple of points. 29th is all locked - up. Still in contention for worse season in oilers history (I think - need to check).

And yet the management will survive yet another year ...

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#181 Rockmorton65
March 22 2014, 09:37PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

Again, I know most Flames fans don't actually possess the ability to read, but it's GAZDIC.

It matters??

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#182 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 09:38PM
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@Quintana

Six.... Six.... Six

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#183 Clyde
March 22 2014, 09:38PM
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Mo Playoffs Mo Problems wrote:

I suspect that's what they were talking about when they went to the box.

It wouldn't surprise me if they went again tonight and they both took their helmets off. But suggesting that Gazdic should just take his helmet off and volunteer his team for an extra minor penalty is asinine.

Gazdic won't take his helmet off.

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#184 RKD
March 22 2014, 09:39PM
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Wow, Gio and Cammy have been beasts tonight. If Gio passes Hudler for the leading scorer on the team it will be the first time in Flames franchise history that a defenceman has done that. Gio is one of the better captains in the league, I think the best Canadian one too. Better than Dion 'Princess' Phaneuf who left the ice as Paul Ranger was being stretchered off. Better than Henrik 'Softie' Sedin, better than Jason 'Turnover Machine' Spezza, better than Andrew 'Cheapshot artist' Ference. Nominate this guy for the Norris.

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#185 RexHolez
March 22 2014, 09:39PM
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im starting to get onboard with this oiler rebuild!! but just as a social experiment. im curious to see how long an amateur team can pretend to be a professional one and still have people come pay to watch

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#186 -30-
March 22 2014, 09:40PM
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I can see Hall switching benches in a few mins. He doesn't seem to like what Eakins is saying.1

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#187 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 09:40PM
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Loweblows wrote:

Shut up

Why did we trade him? I forget.

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#188 Ivan Drago
March 22 2014, 09:40PM
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Hall and Eakins arguing on the bench.....interesting. If anyone can make Eakins get canned, have to think it would be Hall. Please oh please Hall tell Mr Fitness where he can shove his carrots.

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#189 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 09:41PM
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What position does petry play.

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#190 kale
March 22 2014, 09:41PM
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Did I just hear Stauffer right? Smith's services will no longer be required and there is a press onference on monday?

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#191 Fresh Mess
March 22 2014, 09:41PM
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I think the coach killing divas...err, I mean the big 5 young guns of the Oilers are about to get another coach canned.

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#192 Derian Hatcher
March 22 2014, 09:42PM
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kale wrote:

I really have got to turn on 630 ched to see how Stauffer spins this

I'll save you the effort of turning on your radio…

"I said 8 years ago that they should start the rebuild, I was the only one in town to say that. Fans are upset, I get that, but they have to understand that this is a process…Eakins is learning along with the players, I played with Guy Gadowski with SSAC, the fans are upset, I get that…wow the oilers have to show more compete, they are getting their show ran tonight, but it is a process and since I'm paid by the Oilers I'm between a rock and a hard place and can't say what is really happening because if I could I would say that this organization lacks the leadership and vision from the owner on down. Eakins is in WAAAAAYYY over his head and the young guns are spending two much time socializing in private rooms of pubs and bars on white ave, insisting that no pictures be taken, but signing plenty of autographs for the attractive female patrons - and really guys, they're young wealthy guys, who wouldn't do the same in their shoes??? What's that, Gretz, Mess, Coff, & Andy did the same in the 80's - sure they did, but they were WINNERS and COMPETED. Unfortunately, the current optics are brutal…but so is the team, coaching the management, the scouting department and the owner."

Sigh..bring me a drink every 2 on 1 against, I should be drunk in 15 minutes

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#193 Scoring_guru
March 22 2014, 09:43PM
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How does Kelly Hrudy have a job?

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#194 -30-
March 22 2014, 09:43PM
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I swear that Calgary played last night and Edmonton had it off?

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#195 Jeffff
March 22 2014, 09:43PM
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Jackson wrote:

This has been the team for 8 years and fans still believe . They have been the worst team in the NHL for 8 years, and fans are disappointed with this game. No wonder Lowe got a job.

Could you imagine if a playoff team took Edmonton seriously. Oilers are truly an AHL team. Oilers points are inflated because no one takes them seriously.

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#196 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 09:43PM
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beloch wrote:

Whoever picks the music at Rexall is a freakin' sadist. Nobody deserves to be subjected to that kind of abuse.

Went to clippers game at staples center a few weeks ago. Scandalous how bad the entertainment package is in EDM (and Calgary) by comparison.

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#197 kevin
March 22 2014, 09:44PM
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Gio now has 43 points in what 53 games and is a plus 10 on a poor team..maybe I'm being a homer here but I feel he should be atlest a finalist for the norris

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#198 Rob F
March 22 2014, 09:44PM
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only thing saving eakins job is bucky and smith getting fired....eakins will throw them under the bus.....somethings not rightnot sure if its players attitude or coaches attitude thats toxic

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#199 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 09:45PM
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Saw the isolation on TV of Eakins chewing halls ass.

Fifty - fifty he demands a trade this summer if this keeps up.

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#200 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 09:46PM
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Now our franchise player has an obvious disconnect with the coach. The tear down of the rebuild is complete.

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