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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#251 Gk1980
March 22 2014, 10:10PM
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I'm gonna say it. RNH is NOT a first line centre I'm the NHL. Maybe in junior but not here. Sad reality.

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#252 Rockmorton65
March 22 2014, 10:11PM
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Jordan Nugent-Hallkins wrote:

My argument isn't that he's tough because he could beat you up, my argument is that he is required, by the rules of the league he plays in, to wear a visor. Stop saying 'if he fights, take his visor off', because he's literally not allowed.

I mentioned the fact that he would whoop you, because you called him a wuss. If he's a wuss and he could take you apart, what does that make you?

If he's not allowed, then how are other "tough guys" in the league doing it? It's an honor code. Two guys want to fight, they agree to take their helmets off at the same time (or undo the strap so it can be pulled off). If they both do it, then they will both get penalized. They agree to this when they drop the gloves. Your guy doesn't want to abide by that code because he'd get his ass handed to him regularly.

He's a wuss in his world. Put a pro athlete (even an Oiler counts), in a fight against an average joe, he'll win. We established what I am, a lover not a fighter.

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#253 MattL
March 22 2014, 10:11PM
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We want ten. We want ten.

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#254 Fresh Mess
March 22 2014, 10:11PM
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HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAAH

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#255 Burnward
March 22 2014, 10:11PM
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WOOOOOOO!!!!!!

This might be the straw in Edmonton though. Heads better roll after this one.

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#256 RexHolez
March 22 2014, 10:12PM
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just simply done with the oilers. no cheap shot, no witty comment, just done

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#257 Ivan Drago
March 22 2014, 10:12PM
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Jackson wrote:

Obviously Drago you have never played competitive hockey. With 82 games it is hard to get up for certain games. You don't want to lose but a team like LA plays harder against SJ than Edmonton. It is reality

Actually I have. And without making millions I still tried as hard as I could every game, the opponent didn't matter. I called it pride. I was especially pissed when we lost to so called lesser opponents.

And in the time it took me to type this, flames score twice...........a new low even for the oil.

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#258 kale
March 22 2014, 10:12PM
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If MacT comes on the radio and says that the coaching staff has really started working well and Eakins is not going anywhere I am becoming a flames fan and thats bad

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#259 Cubsfan
March 22 2014, 10:12PM
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OK....In a year of many lows, this is officially the lowest point......

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#260 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 10:12PM
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Word just in. The Oilers are going to replace ther water bottles with sippy cups.

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#261 BurningSensation
March 22 2014, 10:13PM
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This might be the greatest non Stanley Cup winning day of my Flames loving life.

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#262 TonyT
March 22 2014, 10:13PM
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@Serious Gord

I was indifferent before this game, but to bench Hall over it is downright embarrassing.

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#263 RexHolez
March 22 2014, 10:13PM
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MattL wrote:

We want ten. We want ten.

been an oiler fan my entire life! I want 10 too!

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#264 Mason Storm
March 22 2014, 10:14PM
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Lose to Buffalo, blown out by Calgary. Who's up next? It can't get worse tho...............right?

*turns out lights and pulls the blankets over my head*

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#265 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 10:14PM
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Sevenseven wrote:

He wants an NHL job and katz has deep pockets. You are right probably wont happen, I just really hope it does.

Good luck in your guys rebuild. Im sure they are only 3 years away from a Stanley cup.

Sutter is a friend of the in-laws. Not very interested in coaching in the nhl with the possible exception of EDM - but only on terms that include no Lowe.

He just needs to wait a little longer...

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#266 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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Eight....eight....eight

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#267 Oiler63
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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Gk1980 wrote:

I'm gonna say it. RNH is NOT a first line centre I'm the NHL. Maybe in junior but not here. Sad reality.

He was thrown to the wolf since day 1. Never got proper guidance either on or off the ice. Same can be said for Hall and Yak. It's the Oilers model.

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#268 Jackson
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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Ivan Drago wrote:

Actually I have. And without making millions I still tried as hard as I could every game, the opponent didn't matter. I called it pride. I was especially pissed when we lost to so called lesser opponents.

And in the time it took me to type this, flames score twice...........a new low even for the oil.

Nice soundbite but the reality is different.

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#269 BurningSensation
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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BurningSensation wrote:

This might be the greatest non Stanley Cup winning day of my Flames loving life.

Scratch that, as soon as I wrote it I thought of a good 9 others that are better.

But two more and we approach Sheehy making Gretzky cry territory.

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#270 Sevenseven
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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BurningSensation wrote:

This might be the greatest non Stanley Cup winning day of my Flames loving life.

Thanks for giving us a better draft pic Calgary :)

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#271 RKD
March 22 2014, 10:15PM
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There's too much going on with the Oilers even outside of the play on the ice.

Here's a chronicle of events this season:

1) Mac T promises bold moves

2) The Oil start the season slow, Nail Yakupov's agent Igor Larionov flies from Russia to fight with Oilers management because his star player and client isn't getting enough ice time.

3) Devan Dubynk and Labarbera struggle and eventually Dubie gets traded to Nashville.

4) The Oilers sign UFA Bryzgalov to aid them in net.

5) Mac T trades Smid to their arch rival Calgary Flames 6) Lars Eller calls the Oilers a junior team

7) Twice this season, Oiler fans have thrown their jerseys on the ice

8) The owner Darryl Katz issues a public apology letter to their fans

9) The Oilers acquired Scrivens

10) The Oilers trade away Bryzgalov

11) The Oilers acquire Fasth, they are now on their sixth goalie

12) They trade away Ales Hemsky

I'm sure I have missed some other things but the organization is a comedy of errors. Dallas Eakins always looks bewildered, did he expect to magically make the Oilers a playoff team? There's so many other things going on, the players are surely distracted. Not to excuse them for their poor defensive shortcomings. How on earth some of the players didn't snap or have a nervous mental breakdown is beyond me.

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#272 kale
March 22 2014, 10:16PM
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oh oh another jersey..

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#273 John
March 22 2014, 10:16PM
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Can someone please make an internet meme out of Dallas Eakins's face? Please?!

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#274 Smythyyy
March 22 2014, 10:17PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

Wow - just wow. Eakins is pissed at hall for accidentally spraying him with water?

If he doesn't apologize at the post game presser he should be fired. I'm being serious.

It's the favorite shirt he got from his hot wife :) But on a serious note, if you don't have the temperament to be calm in that situation you're probably not built to coach the NHL. How can you focus on coaching when you're so busy being mad. I hope Hall told him F*** off.

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#275 Jackson
March 22 2014, 10:17PM
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I hope Calgary goes into double figures, maybe Daryl might think there is a problem

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#276 Scoring_guru
March 22 2014, 10:17PM
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Hrudy is an idiot!

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#277 Loweblows
March 22 2014, 10:17PM
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Anyone care to defend why we keep eakins? Please elaborate.

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#278 Jase
March 22 2014, 10:18PM
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Serious Gord wrote:

No chance sutter works under Lowe.

Sutter working with Lowe, will never happen

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#279 Fresh Mess
March 22 2014, 10:18PM
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What the hell has Sutter done in his two NHL coaching gigs that makes people think he is the answer in Edmonton?

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#280 Goon80
March 22 2014, 10:19PM
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Look at the flowers! Just look at the flowers and count to 3, before you know it we'll be drafting #2. Things have to be better than what we've endured this year, right?

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#281 Jordan Nugent-Hallkins
March 22 2014, 10:19PM
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@BobbyO

Eight years of minor hockey growing up, shinny every winter. I work up north so I can't join a beer league, or I'd be doing that too.

But you guys are right, why bother reading the rulebook? It's just there to, you know, GOVERN THE RULES OF THE GAME.

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#282 Rockmorton65
March 22 2014, 10:20PM
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Sevenseven wrote:

Lol top six defense or forwards? We got a horrible team. Just wait till we hire Brent Sutter as bench boss to turn this team around. What a beautiful day that will be, a sutter coaching the oilers to glory....

Holy crap! This DOES sound like the Flames from 5 years ago. Too funny.

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#283 -30-
March 22 2014, 10:21PM
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I guess you can't put this one on Yak!

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#284 RKD
March 22 2014, 10:21PM
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Don't take your foot of the gas Calgary, I want a beating reminiscent of a 13-1 win over the Sharks from the early 90s!

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#285 James
March 22 2014, 10:22PM
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Scrivens throwing the jersey back into the crowd was pretty interesting I must say.

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#286 Dog Train
March 22 2014, 10:22PM
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I'm sure the HNIC crew will find a way to blame this one on Yakupov.

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#287 BurningSensation
March 22 2014, 10:22PM
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Sevenseven wrote:

Thanks for giving us a better draft pic Calgary :)

Oh I think it's clear you have earned that pick all on your own

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#288 -30-
March 22 2014, 10:22PM
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Go Curtis!

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#289 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 10:23PM
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Another jersey - fans booing them out of the building. Petulant coach. Baghdad job for a GM. 7-1 at the hands of a team with a thimble-full of talent by comparison.

THE lowest point in oilers history.

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#290 -30-
March 22 2014, 10:23PM
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They shouldn't be throwing hats they should be throwing more Oilers jerseys.

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#291 Burnward
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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GLENNIE!!! WOOOOOO!!!!!!

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#292 Serious Gord
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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James wrote:

Scrivens throwing the jersey back into the crowd was pretty interesting I must say.

Too bad the fans didn't throw it back...

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#293 Anton (still waiting for playoffs)
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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Almost 10! Make it happen Oilers!

Fire Eakins!

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#294 Bringbackslats
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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Get those sweaters over the boards... Enough is enough of this Crap. Show Darryl what we think!

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#295 Smythyyy
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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Loweblows wrote:

Anyone care to defend why we keep eakins? Please elaborate.

Just read any of Gregor's post for that

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#296 MattL
March 22 2014, 10:24PM
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Loweblows wrote:

Anyone care to defend why we keep eakins? Please elaborate.

He's the best dietician and amateur triathlete in the NHL?

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#297 RexHolez
March 22 2014, 10:25PM
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#oilerpositives - people are still in the stands... mostly flames fans, but we cant get picky

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#298 -30-
March 22 2014, 10:25PM
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Why aren't they chanting,

LOWE MUST GO!

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#299 James
March 22 2014, 10:25PM
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Smyth is the lone Oiler without a minus tonight. Good lord!

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#300 Mason Storm
March 22 2014, 10:26PM
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-30- wrote:

I guess you can't put this one on Yak!

Damn right we can. If he wasn't hurt he could have scored 6 and we, still would have lost. I guess you're right, we can't blame him.

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