Zack Stortini had a great night, showcasing the kind of speed and puck-handling not seen from a fighter since Georges Laraque left town (video g/t to Martin Patriquin, whose article is worth reading). That’s just one of a few items making news today.
Ever since training camp, when the Oilers started with approximately 342 forwards, there has been some concern about how to fit everybody in. Now, guys like Steve MacIntyre and Robert Nilsson, who might have been sent to the minors have some room to breath, as the Oilers have announced (g/t Derek Zona) that Pouliot will undergo surgery and be out of the lineup for eight to ten weeks. Zona guesses that Pouliot’s time in Edmonton is done; I personally think that will depend on how guys like Gilbert Brule play in his absence.
Aside from that, there were three blog posts I wanted to point out to the denizens of the Nation if they’d been missed:
1. The Scoring Chances for Last Night. Dennis has been posting scoring chance tallies over at mc79hockey.com. It’s good information, and it’s interesting for me to see who is in the black, who was in the red, and how the game balanced out.
2. Comparing the 08-09 and 09-10 Starts. This item was pointed to in the comment section of the last post, and is well worth reading; I for one was very surprised by how similar the starts this season and last season were. Hopefully the Oilers can fix some of their underlying problems before the bounces start going the other way.
3. The Long and Winding Road. Jeff Deslauriers’ fantastic play last night sparked this gem from Lowetide, and the elaboration in the comments is worth reading too. I’m not sure that I believe Deslauriers can consistently keep up thses sort of performances; last year he was either brilliant or abysmal and he needs to keep the pendulum pushed to one end of the scale.