Another loss is going to be tough for Oilers fans to swallow, and some undoubtedly won’t be in the mood to look for positives. There was at least one important item to note, though: Devan Dubnyk’s solid play. In stopping 37 of 40 shots, not only did Dubnyk give the Oilers a chance to win but he showed he isn’t about to go quietly into the night after struggling in the early season.
Notice a pattern here? Like, say, a New York Islander left all alone at point blank range to put the puck wherever he wanted in the net?
Yes, Devan Dubnyk allowed three goals, but all of them were on the team playing "defence" in front of him. Patrick Roy and Dominik Hasek and Terry Sawchuk all rolled into one would have struggled with those shots. Sometimes there’s just nothing a goalie can do about that.
Is He Back?
The Dubnyk tonight – the guy who seemed unflappable as the Islanders peppered his net, the guy who didn’t collapse after New York had scored – is exactly the guy the Oilers have needed all season. He skipped the first four games, but if he’s back now it makes life a lot easier for the team, for fans, and for a general manager who reportedly has spent the last week racking up dollars on his long distance bill with calls around the league.
Though it might not make much difference if the Oilers persist in letting the leagues Okposos and Tavares (Tavareses?) have however much time they want in the slot.