GDB 32: Phx v Edm

You’ll forgive us if we aren’t exactly wetting our pants in anticipation of the game tonight. See, Friday night didn’t go exactly as planned. Santa failed us. The Oilers failed us. The taxi companies failed us. Operation Red Nose failed us. The legal system failed us. Now we are left to sit at the Remand Centre looking out over a cold cityscape and wonder what went wrong.

OK fine. We aren’t really in the prison downtown. But we are in a way worse kind of prison. A prison of the mind. And that’s way worse, trust us. We are all imprisioned by a crappy team, folks, and we aren’t getting out any time soon.

Real round table analysis

We had a long talk over a tall beer with a few of the boys after the game. We accused one dude of being a bandwagon jumper –- which he took with characteristically bad humour.

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“Screw you Wanye” he yelled. “I am no bandwagon jumper. I’m here every single game griping the entire time. I wish the Oilers weren’t so crappy this year. I wish that we could sit here and say ‘Wow, the forwards sure are scoring left and right.’ I wish I could say ‘It’s Christmas and I am already fairly certain the Oilers are going to make the playoffs this year.’ But that ain’t the case is it?”

It’s an interesting distinction between fans who have a legitimate axe to grind and bandwagon jumpers.

We ran into our boy Ssseth at the game on Friday. He is the prime example of an Oiler fan that has been completely failed by the squad, in our opinion. With every failed pass, weak back check and fancy play that went awry you could see his anger starting to build. Don’t get us wrong — when the Oil tied the game in the third, there was joy and high fives all around. But when the shoot-out ended, he left the building faster than Elvis leaves a concert. Don’t kid yourself: this guy is a superfan. But even superfans have their limits of the crap they can tolerate.

Is this bandwagon jumping? No. And we guess that’s the point.

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No jumping here

All the comments on sites like these, all the calls to radio shows all over town, all the water cooler talk about “Whatever is to be done about that Oiler hockey squadron?” All these folks really want is a winner. No one really wants MacT to be fired. They just want the team to win. No one really wants to see Nilsson, Roloson or (insert other Oiler in the dog house here) shipped out of town. You ask anyone on here that is vehement that MacT be fired the following question and watch their reply.

“Would you rather see MacT fired or the Oilers make the playoffs?”

We will bet it will be ridiculously lopsided. In fact we will make it the poll.

Look around RX1 during any given night of late. Look at the good people who have shelled out hundreds of their own dollars for tickets –- and then thousands of dollars for flat beers. We don’t see a bandwagon jumper in the house. We have been to games in plenty of cities too, so we’ve seen the lame noise that passes for applause in all too many expansion cities.

It’s different here. But there really is a limit to how much mediocrity one team’s fans can take. And perhaps we haven’t arrived at that point yet, but it is definitely on the horizon and getting closer with every passing minute.

You can’t help but feel for the Citizens of the OilersNation. It’s nut-freezing cold out, pitch black 23 hours a day and there really ain’t shit to do up here but have a few beers and watch a few scores. So turn out to watch we do: in droves.

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In RX1, at the bars, buying the PPV broadcasts or sitting around with a bunch of fellow “bandwagon jumpers” ignoring your poker game because the Oilers are down 3-1 “but on a powerplay.” Teams in 25 other cities would KILL for the level of fan dedication. Our team seems content to sit on its hands and issue a bunch of platitudes about effort and turning the corner.

So this is prison.

On a related note: we will see YOU at the JL meeting tonight.


  • RobinB

    Hockey Gods wrote:

    RobinB wrote:
    Hockey Gods wrote:
    We told a bunch of babyfaced kids still hoping to get their first smell of sweet sweet pelt, would lead us the promised land.
    Pardon?
    Whoops I meant to say We were told…

    No, no, no. The pelt thing. I travelled with the Oilers for many, many years from Vancouver to Tampa and Texas to Tennessee and never once came across this sweet, sweet pelt thing. Somebody 'splain.

  • RBK

    Cam wrote:

    The worst bandwagon I ever saw was in 2004 when all kinds of folks started flying Flames Flags around town. What a bunch of friggin dorks. The only time I have touched a flames flag was to ram it up someone’s – oh… sorry mom…

    Cam – I couldn't agree with you more. I remember that "Canada's team" nonsense. Yeah right. I would rather the Flames get the Bubonic Plague then win a single game.

  • Ender the Dragon

    RobinB wrote:

    . . . The pelt thing. I travelled with the Oilers for many, many years from Vancouver to Tampa and Texas to Tennessee and never once came across this sweet, sweet pelt thing. Somebody ’splain.

    I don't think a sophisticated individual like you really wants to hear that 'splaination. Let it slide, Robin.

  • Hockey Gods

    @ RobinB:
    Well Robin, my dad told me this; when a bird falls in lust with bee, it allow the bee repeatedly poke it's stinger in the birds pelt. This muffles the hair in the pelt, some birds wash their pelts with soap and water, and other birds wash their pelts with even dirty pelts. This causes quite the pelt to smell and taste a little different, some don't like it, others think it is sweet. And if you have two pelts you get sweet sweet pelt.

    Did you not pay attention Mrs. Wilder in 8th grade health?

  • Fiveandagame

    GAWD DAMNIT…Nilsson is really gonna sit….one of the best passers on the team, is going to sit. I guy who some nights this year was our best player. IN his place we get a pretend NHL'er in Reddox.

    Great I am sure thats exactly what Gagner and Cole need to bust out of their respective slumps.

    MIght as well Get Louie DeBrusk to lace em up and play on the third line at this rate.

    With all the thoughts I am thinking about this team Santa is going to skip my house for years….

  • OilFan in Calgary

    Jason Gregor wrote:

    Here are the lines tonight, fresh off the presses:
    Hemsky – Horcoff – Penner
    Moreau – Cogliano – Pouliot
    Reddox – Gagner – Cole
    Strudwick – Brodziak – Stortini
    Astute fans may note the absence of Nilsson who has been benched for the evening for his lackluster effort of late.

    Moreau should be on the fourth line, Reddox should be in the minors, Studwick should be in the press box and Nilsson, Shremp and Brule should take their places. It's not rocket science.

  • topshelf

    If that is the order of lines our 2nd line is brutal. Combined what 12 goals? Yea yea Moreau works hard whatever he should not be on a scoring line I'm sorry.

  • OvenChicken8

    Jason Gregor wrote:

    Here are the lines tonight, fresh off the presses:
    Hemsky – Horcoff – Penner
    Moreau – Cogliano – Pouliot
    Reddox – Gagner – Cole
    Strudwick – Brodziak – Stortini
    Astute fans may note the absence of Nilsson who has been benched for the evening for his lackluster effort of late.

    JDD tonight?

    And we all have to remember this is just what the game will start with after the blender hits midway through the first things will be different.

  • Jonathan Willis

    topshelf wrote:

    If that is the order of lines our 2nd line is brutal. Combined what 12 goals? Yea yea Moreau works hard whatever he should not be on a scoring line I’m sorry.

    I agree, but it's probably worth noting that after Hemsky, Horcoff, and Penner, Cogliano and Moreau have the next highest point totals.

    Then, if you were to adjust the point totals for time on ice, Moreau actually jumps into third.

  • BrutalB

    Tonight's lineup proves once again how MacT doesn't have a clue.

    Putting Cole on the third line after his best game of the season?

    Bravo MacT – you're a genius.

    It makes me sick that NO ONE in the MSM is holding MacT and Lowe accountable for this joke of a team. Are you guys afraid to lose your press passes? I don't think there's a nut (let alone two) amongst you reporters.

    I pay good dollars for my season tickets – where the hell can I get a refund for what I've seen so far?

  • RBK

    BrutalB wrote:

    It makes me sick that NO ONE in the MSM is holding MacT and Lowe accountable for this joke of a team. Are you guys afraid to lose your press passes? I don’t think there’s a nut (let alone two) amongst you reporters.
    I pay good dollars for my season tickets – where the hell can I get a refund for what I’ve seen so far?

    Gregor and Brownlee seem to be pretty up front…

  • ramped up

    @ BrutalB:
    What are you bitching about??? Do these guys coach the players,sign the players,scout and draft the players…PAY the players??? Don't whine about who is going to pay for your tickets in the same line you talk about the guys that bring you the stories. Wow, call this guy a Waambulance

  • topshelf

    @ Jonathan Willis
    If you go by goals not points Brodziak is ahead of Cole, Pouliot, Gagner, Reddox and whipping boy Nilsson and tied with Moreau. And those goals are being scored while playing consideribly less offensive minutes while playing with plugs. You can skew the numbers anyway you want. Either way, Moreau is not an offensive threat.

  • Deep Oil

    Wanye – oilers are a private company – they could care less about the fans and have one person to answer to DK who pays the bills with $100mm on VISA to buy the team. So the Oilers have not failed anyone, the taxi companies could care about anyone and take their phones off the hook, operation red nose is a last resort for drinkers that fail to plan, (don't drink and drive) – note the checkstop at Calgary Trail and 53 Avenue every saturday at midnight, the legal system failed YOU, cry me a river – you don't know JACK until you have been arrested at Rexall for no apparent reason for 9 hours and released (sorry warrant was not valid), and remand is for social welfare keeping warm from October – April – ask Coach MacTavish about taking a taxi or Red Nose – I have heard he spent some time in the Boston Remand for some wobbly pops.

  • ramped up

    Deep Oil wrote:

    , the legal system failed YOU, cry me a river – you don’t know JACK until you have been arrested at Rexall for no apparent reason for 9 hours and released (sorry warrant was not valid), and remand is for social welfare keeping warm from October – April – ask Coach MacTavish about taking a taxi or Red Nose – I have heard he spent some time in the Boston Remand for some wobbly pops.

    What the hell…are you drunk already???

  • Ender the Dragon

    @ Deep Oil:

    I know the Oil are playing tonight and that is of course cause for concern, but land sakes, man; are you drunk already? It's 4 in the afternoon!

  • ramped up

    This freedom of speech thing is kinda funny when Deep Oil is half blitzed @4(or fully blitzed). WE've gone from fire the coach,bench the players,to 9 hour stints at the remand for nothing and bringing back something that happened 20 years ago. I think booze fueled ramblings are funny but lets try to keep it current!?