Near the end of tonight’s 4-0 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs at Rexall Place, somebody Tweeted a picture of Edmonton Oilers’ coach Dallas Eakins staring off into space, looking stunned, distant, dazed.
Likewise, I’m sure, were many of the fans who filed out of the rink after yet another loss, although I’m guessing just as many headed to the parking lot flat-out pissed off after seeing more of the same old, same old.
As they should be. New season or not, new coach or not, injuries or not, the latest edition of the Oilers Selling Hope Campaign hasn’t even hit November yet and it sure looks from where I sit like it’s come off the rails – again.
"They’re banged up. They’re tired," post-game radio host Rob Brown offered as he and Bob Stauffer did a post-mortem on the latest stiff. Brown, to be fair, is probably right. Still, tired beats sick and tired, which it seems a substantial portion of the fan base is after seeing their team drop to 3-9-2.
A cross sampling from fans here at Oilersnation and Twitter:
— Don Masson (@donmasson) October 30, 2013
@Robin_Brownlee I bust my ass working 15-16 hrs aday so I can watch this horse crap, fuq
— jason werkman (@jawerk) October 30, 2013
SPYDYR: "The Oilers poop the bed and still over 250 comments. This Management team does not deserve fans like us."
REXHOLEZ: "So are we throwing the season away again or are we getting a defenceman this week?"
#SIXRINGS: “And lastly I’ll say that there’s one other guy in hockey today that is still working in the game that has won more Stanley Cups than me. So I think I know a little bit about winning, if there’s ever a concern.” — Kevin Lowe.
BY THE NUMBERS
The Oilers are 3-9-2 for eight points, a total that ties them for third-worst in franchise history through the first 14 games of a season.
The 1993-94 Oilers hold the mark for ineptitude at 2-11-1 for five points under Ted Green on the way to a 25-45-14 record and 64 points. The 1990-91 Oilers are next, going 2-10-2 for six points under John Muckler on the way to 37-37-6 for 80 points. The 1979-80 Oilers under Glen Sather debuted in the NHL at 2-8-4 for eight points, finishing at 28-39-13 for 69 points.
Here’s Edmonton’s record through 14 games in the seven seasons they’ve missed the playoffs since getting to Game 7 of the 2006 Stanley Cup final (as season in which they went 7-6-1 for 15 points in the first 14 games).
2012-13: 6-5-3 15 points
2011-12: 9-3-2 20 points
2010-11: 4-8-2 10 points
2009-10: 7-6-1 15 points
2008-09: 7-6-1 15 points
2007-08: 5-9-0 10 points
2006-07: 7-6-1 15 points
NEXT YEAR BECKONS ALREADY
After hosting Detroit Saturday, the Oilers play four straight on the road with stops in Florida, Tampa Bay, Philadelphia and Chicago. They hit the 20-game mark, nudging up against the quarter-pole of the season, against the Dallas Stars in their first game back at home Nov. 13.
Simply put, history shows if the Oilers don’t occupy a playoff spot through 20 games, which seems unlikely, to understate in the extreme, they’ll be up against long odds to be in the post-season mix after 82 games.
Listen to Robin Brownlee Wednesdays and Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m. on the Jason Gregor Show on TEAM 1260.