Dwayne Roloson: Destined To Play Every Game Between Now and Elimination?


Fun game last night. The refereeing was questionable – at times even downright bad, and the Oilers didn’t exactly carry the play for the whole game, but a win is a win and the Oilers have managed to put together a stretch of play that has them gaining some clearance on 9th place in the West. Despite a goal from Gagner and a shootout goal from Kotalik, the second line was soundly outplayed on the night, and Liam Reddox left the game after a late hit to the head from behind courtesy of Ben Eager.

Dwayne Roloson played his 27th game in a row last night, and there were some scary moments. He went down hard a couple of times, at one point slamming the back of his knee into his goal post, at another point appearing to injure his arm. He was asked about it after the game, and here are some of the questions:

REPORTER: Havlat went around the net and it looked like you hurt your arm…
ROLOSON: You’ll have to ask the trainers on that one, I’m not at liberty to say.

REPORTER: Were you worried at all when you went down?
ROLOSON: No, I wasn’t worried – well I was worried, he had the puck and he was going behind the net. You always worry when something hurts, but it’s part of the job.
PRINCIPE: Did you think you might have to come out, especially on the initial impact?
ROLOSON: I don’t know. I can’t answer that question – I don’t know what my thought process was at that point, sorry Gene I really can’t.

PRINCIPE: Before the game the head coach said that he had spoken to you and that he maybe considered starting Jeff, but he thought “why change a good thing”. I’m wonder about the conversation feeling you had in getting another chance to continue the streak?
ROLOSON: Well it wasn’t much of a conversation. He just said, “Are you OK?” I said “yeah” That was it. There wasn’t much to it.

Aside from the fact that Roloson clearly likes playing with the media and that he isn’t going to say anything that indicates he feels tired or hurt, I see one very interesting point there. At the risk of reading too much into one comment, the conversation between Roloson and MacTavish would seem to offer us a glimpse into the coach’s mindset. MacTavish clearly sees Roloson as a better option than Jeff Deslauriers, and it seems that he plans to ride the hot hand until Roloson says he needs a break – and despite his age I don’t know if that’s going to happen. Given that Roloson gets practices off, and given his incredibly competitive nature, I doubt that he’s going to ask for a break. MacTavish actually raised the point that playing many consecutive games could be a positive for Roloson:

“I’m waiting for the question: Do you think all this activity has been beneficial to Rollie?” added MacTavish. “And I’ll answer it: It looks to me like it has. He is a guy that’s capable of keeping his game at the level it’s at for quite some time.”

Is that wise? While this doesn’t qualify as a full answer, here is Dwayne Roloson’s save percentage (h/t to Vic Ferrari for the idea) in five game segments over the last 27 games:

  • 1st segment: .898 SV%
  • 2nd segment: .923 SV%
  • 3rd segment: .918 SV%
  • 4th segment: .912 SV%
  • 5th segment: .919 SV%
  • Last 2 games: .929 SV%

I don’t see any evidence there that Roloson’s getting tired yet. Further, I really don’t see MacTavish resting him until one of two things occurs: the Oilers have a playoff spot locked, or the wheels fall off. And I’m not convinced that he’s wrong to do so.

  • Hippy

    If we don't make the playoffs and if MacT resigns or whatever what are the odds of him landing in Pho or NYR? I can see those 2 places as the strongest. And while we're on it when the hell is the Moose gonna get behind a bench (ass to start) or behind the scenes somewhere? Imagine if Lowe, MacT, Gretz and Mess all ended up here or in NY? It'd be neat to see if the dream team 2.0 would be a success or not.

  • Hippy

    @ Goal A Game Line:

    If MacTavish quits, I'm fully prepared to launch an "anybody but Messier" campaign.

    Besides, I think Messier's been linked to the GM job in New York.

  • Hippy

    It would be a sad day if another ex Oiler became head coach. Why not take the approach of bringing in a coach that coaches the style of hockey the organization wants to play. If it's offense then bring in that type of coach, if it's the trap, bring in that type of coach,etc…..

    I think MacT will be back for another year as the team will make the playoffs.

    Still no comment on the Jagr issue,why?

  • Hippy

    @ David S:David, you are obviously wearing rose coloured glasses. The Schremp thing went south from the beginning when he was show boating in the shootout. I guess it speaks volume about his maturity. Schremp is a good skater according to Daum. MacT ripped Schremp on TV while he was still playing on the farm for being slow and soft (classy). Clearly, the problem lies in MacT 's chemistry with Schremp. Robbie doesn't get chances to learn in the NHL. Despite of the Oils record setting injuries in 2007-08 , it was only called up twice and once in 2006-07-pathetic. While others on the farm get more time and patience from the coach to learn in the NHL, Robbie gets the "Oliver Twist treatment"- a lot of time spent hoping but no breaks for a free meal.

    As with Dustin Penner, MacT will bend him until he breaks if not he will continue to be his whipping boy then trade him. With some players you can embarrassed and ripped them out in public as well as sit them out hoping to get a positive respond. Well, Penner did not follow that path because he is trying to learn the MacT's system but apparrently not fast enough for MacT's liking. Public humiliation doesn't work for everyone. Pride and dignity seemed to get in the way.

    So David (Staples?), perhaps you should hangout at the MAC store and read a little more. The FMNF love-in is just your fantasy in your head.

  • Hippy

    Jonathan Willis wrote:

    @ Goal A Game Line:

    Besides, I think Messier’s been linked to the GM job in New York.

    That rumour has been out for awhile but I wonder what keeps taking so long for him to step into something?

  • Hippy

    Slurve wrote:

    The Schremp thing went south from the beginning when he was show boating in the shootout. I guess it speaks volume about his maturity. Schremp is a good skater according to Daum.

    I've had Daum on my show multiple times and never once has he said Schremp is a good skater. He said he needs to improve his footspeed, which isn't a shock to anyone who has watched him.

  • Hippy

    @ Jason Gregor:This was quoted from the Edmonton journal this morning March 22, 2009 article by Jim Matheson's Hockey World page C4. There was a quote from Daum regarding Schremp.

  • Hippy

    From LT's blog today…

    "Daum (today's paper): "People talk about his poor skating, but he's not a poor skater, he's just not as aggressive as he should be when he doesn't have the puck. He has to reinvent himself."

  • Hippy

    David S wrote:

    Daum (today’s paper): “People talk about his poor skating, but he’s not a poor skater, he’s just not as aggressive as he should be when he doesn’t have the puck. He has to reinvent himself.”

    He's not a poor skater. True, but Daum never says he is a GOOD skater. Schremp needs direction on what he NEEDS to work on, and he has be to receptive. He is combative to what coaches have told him since turning pro, but he also isn't the most eager beaver to put forth what they tell him.