GDB LXVIII: THE TOILET BOWL

Does it get any bigger than this for Oiler fans today? Does it? Can it? Okay, it is impossible to really sell this as a big game, but when a team is in 30th place the only big games are against the team in 29th. And that’s what you will see tonight when you watch it at home or come down to The Pint for the OilersNation party tonight.

The Oilers have a seven-point lead in the race for 30th, which would guarantee them the first or second pick this summer in the NHL entry draft. The Oilers can still easily afford to win this game and still finish last, but many of you will be secretly hoping for a loss to make sure that nothing messes up the plan for first pick overall.

The way this season has unfolded a win tonight might kick-start the Oilers into a two or three game winning streak, and no sensible Oiler fan wants that.

But increasing the tension this evening is the dilemma between cheering for a loss to increase the odds of picking first, versus the basic instinct of every non-Leaf fan in Canada: destroy the Leafs. You see, the Leafs are easily the most annoying fans in the league making their team one of the most fun to beat. The Leafs fan is in a neck and neck battle with their most annoying fan co-runner: the Flames fan.

Leaf fan constantly reminds you that he is the most loyal fan, because despite a 42-year Stanley Cup drought he still wears his jersey proudly. I guess standing by a loser for 42 years is some sort badge of honour. I’d burn that badge if I was in their shoes.

Flames fan is just annoying. She uses weak-ass lines like, “it must hurt to see an Edmonton boy dominate in a Flames jersey,” or “At least our team makes the playoffs”. While both are factual, it shows the shallow depth of their wittiness. Tonight is one of those games that as an Oiler fan I’d think you want to win.

So what if you move within five points of 29th. Do you honestly think this edition of the Oilers is capable of winning three or four straight? Seriously, do you? In a season like this I’m assuming you need to grasp on to any glimmer of enjoyment that you can. The Oilers have already been swept by the Flames this year.

You’d think beating the Leafs twice might lessen the pain just a bit. As my buddy Scott said, “I freakin hate the Leafs. I hate their annoying fans, and how Grapes continually cups their balls. I know we need to finish 30th, but for one night I will go back to cheering for a win. Plus now they have the piece of s**t Phaneuf, so beating his ass would make it even better.”

In case anyone on Earth hasn’t already noticed, the Oilers aren’t that good, so I wouldn’t worry that a win tonight would derail their route to 30th place. For one night Oiler fans can cheer for a win again and feel good about it.

PISANI OUT, MOREAU IN

The injury carousel continues to roll through the dressing room. Fernando Pisani will sit out tonight with a sore groin, so Ethan Moreau will draw in for him. Ryan Whitney has swelling in his knee, but the Oilers haven’t recalled anyone, so he will dress tonight. It will be interesting to see how much he plays. Jeff Deslauriers draws back in.

Wanye has already gone out on the shakiest limb, guaranteeing a win tonight against the Leafs. We’ll see if he can continue his unsolicited betting advice success streak tonight.

Should be good. See you at the Pint.