Wakey, Wakey, Eggs and Bacon!


The Oilers start their four game road trip off with a tough match up this Saturday against the Boston Bruins. The Bruins are playing well and they will want to bank points going into the Olympic break.

The game is at 1 PM Boston time/11 AM Edmonton time. These early starts can really mess with a player’s internal time clock. The 1 PM start time is usually the time a player has just finished his pregame meal and is heading for his pregame nap. It takes a lot of commitment mentally to get engaged and ready to go. The more often you do it the easier it gets.

Playing in the Eastern Conference really got me used to these start times. At first it was a hard adjustment but as the time went on I really looked forward to them. No morning skate and a normal bed time after! What a treat! Especially for players that have a hard time falling to sleep after a game.

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Every player develops his own techniques to be ready for these games. Some get up early, eat and go back to bed. Others sleep in, eat at the last second, down cups of coffee and then run to the rink. Sometimes coaches have their own ideas and force the issue…

Pat Quinn

In the 2009-2010 season then-head coach Pat Quinn had his own idea of how to get his Oilers players ready to go for the November 15th game against the Atlanta Thrashers. It was a 2 PM start.

Pat decided the best way to get the guys going was to get up early and go for a walk! So at 7 AM we were all lined up in the lobby with strength coach Simon Bennett. After ‘Good Mornings’ all around we were out the door on an early morning walk like a bunch of retirees trying to stay in shape!

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The moment I heard this plan I hated the idea. In all my years of hockey I was never one to complain about schedules. This one really hit me the wrong way! I felt it was a bad idea at the time and still feel it today.

I walked beside Simon most of our walk through scenic Atlanta, past a mall and complained the whole way! Why would Pat get the whole team up so early when we have a game a few hours later? Simon didn’t really have answers for me, but it felt better to me to bitch then to hold it in!

After forty-five minutes we returned to the hotel and settled in for a nice long pregame meeting. We then ate and all rushed back to our rooms to try to catch a quick nap before the scheduled 11 AM bus. Needless to say I don’t think any of our guys were feeling to bright-eyed for the match against the mighty Thrashers.

I know you are all thinking that this sounds like soft hockey players complaining. From the outside I can understand that but reality is different. A hockey player needs all the rest he can get to be firing on all cylinders.

I wish I could tell you that Pat’s technique worked, it didn’t. A late third period goal by the Thrashers led them to a 3-2 victory. We actually played a pretty decent game.

The more I think about it I believe Pat wasn’t worried about our rest. He was motivating us. He thought that by getting us up early he would set us off in a bad mood which would carry into the game. As I remember it worked. I was pissed off the whole game. When I am a coach one day I will mess with my players the same way!

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What a night!

Ben Scrivens! Wow. What a night last night! He was on fire! I cannot remember another performance by a goalie as impressive as that. He was forced to make so many incredible saves because of poor defensive play in front of him. He really bailed his team out. They owe him a few road dinners over the next week.

The overall team defence was overshadowed by Scrivens’ performance. They had been solid in the two games prior to last night but took a huge step back against tougher competition last night.

There is no doubt that winning the game last night is a nice lift for the Oilers but coaches look at the bigger picture. Outside of Scrivens and the top unit of Hall, Eberle and Nuge the big picture last night was ugly!

Hockey Legends Camp in Las Vegas

Tonight on my TSN radio show I will have actor Michael Rosenbaum. He is a cool guy and played Lex Luthor on the hit show Smallville. He is a huge sports fan and a great storyteller! He will be on at 9:45 PM.

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He is coming on to talk sports and a great event he is a part of June 24-27 in Las Vegas called Hockey Legends Fantasy Camp. This is a camp where retired players like Chris Chelios, Jeremy Roenick and Ron Duguay will play hockey with attendees and tell their incredible stories over a few dinners and drinks.

The NHL awards are also in Vegas. This camp will set you up with tickets to that as well plus the after parties.

The event is being put together in part to support the NHL Alumni association. You can get more details at hockeylegendscamp.com.

  • Rob...

    Just great, now I want bacon.

    Oh, who am I kidding? I wanted bacon before I saw the picture.

    Jason, as someone who has played on both coasts, what did you find more challenging, playing for a west coast team and playing an early game on the east coast, or playing for an east coast team and playing a late game on the west coast? Did the impact carry over into following days and games?

  • Had to laugh at the headline as our house the saying is wakey wakey eggs and baky! The game last night was one for the ages and I am glad it was the Oilers and not another team. Always good to have something to cheer for rather than boo.

  • Cool story Hansel

    I travel east to work all the time, get in late and wak up early.
    It is absolutely brutal and I just got to sit in meetings and talk to nerdy engineers.
    I couldn’t imagine bein under the scrutiny of 20,000 people in attendance and millions watching at home.

  • Old Retired Guy (A.K.A. Die-Nasty)

    Isn’t the mood around here just great! I’m feeling the warm and fuzzies right now…you guys are crackin’ jokes about bacon, and nobody has suggested trading so-and-so for Webber/etc…it feels good to have a 3 game win streak…these wins are precious, and a shutout/good goalie performance (so rare in Oil Country) sure makes us giddy.

  • Oilers G- Nations Poet Laureate

    Looking forward to the trashes, lol.

    Typical Oiler fans, aren’t your legs tired from all the jumping on and off of the bandwagon. I am as happy as anyone to see the team win 3 straight, thanks to the heroics of Ben Scrivens but seriously people………

    Good teams go on 3 game winning streaks all the time and the Oilers do it a few times a year and you fans jump on people for not drinking the koolaid.

    I’ll continue to hope this team becomes a contender one day, but that day seems very, very far away. Can Ben Scrivens do that in every game in a 7 game series? I don’t think so.

    • Joy S. Lee

      You’re mired in the old picture. We’re seeing the bigger one, is all. I mean, we’ve been sold on potential here for years, and worse, not only did we buy in, but we bought in because we saw it, too. It’s why we’re still watching, because deep down, we believe. In spite of all the complaining, doom, and gloom.

      The thing about going as low as you can go is that the ride up starts to look pretty good, and intentions begin to take on new looks when you’re in the muck as deep as this team and it’s fans. The potential is still here, they haven’t traded it away. That’s a good thing. But the support pieces were not only all wrong, but they were few and far between. In MacT’s short-term fixing, he’s already increased the size of the potential in our system (other than trading those 2 early picks this year, but I’ll certainly not argue what came back for those picks), upped the battle level in the organization (Belov, Ference, Hendricks, Gordon, Perron + AHL battlers like Pinizotto, etc), brought in a coach with strong intentions, a captain with the burning fire to win (bonus: community presence), and has now brought us a backbone player who could be the impetus that shows this team how to battle as a group, every night. Ben Scrivens, our new leader. Don’t laugh, it may be true. And if it is, MacT is going to win GM of the year award with a poor on-ice record.

      Scrivens isn’t going to stop everything, every game, I’m not delusional. But if he battles like I’ve seen him battle every single time I’ve seen him play, then we will be just fine. You saw it last night. Seriously, when is the LAST time you saw THIS TEAM battle like that for the shutout?? There is a reason they did it, and it wasn’t because of Ginger, Mary Ann, Gilligan, or the Millionaire.

      This kid could be the perfect compliment to this clubs mentality. Try to soak in a little of that potential, see how it feels. Maybe you can’t bring yourself to do it, knowing how many times your hopes have been dashed over the years, but eventually, with MacT at the helm, this thing is finally going in the right direction, and that potential still resides here…and more is coming. I’d be fine with another high pick with potential, in fact, if MacT can’t get enough for it, so long as he continues filling in the holes like he has so far. (With extremely limited resources.)

      You could be right, Drowning in Oil…but why would you want to be? Would you rather my scenario or yours? So, which one are you going to focus on, then? Hopefully the one that brings you a little joy, and a little relief.

      • Lowe But Now High Expectations

        You know, even if this historic night leads Scrivens to new heights as a goalie, his contract is expiring.

        His wife loves warm weather, or least that’s what I read. So what happens if Florida comes calling with a big contract offer? Florida offers him the chance to be a starter. It offers Florida weather. It offers one of the best tax situations in pro sports.

        We may want Scrivens to sign here, but that doesn’t mean he will. He’ll make the decision that’s best for himself and his family. Or she will.

        So before I start a Scrivens festival in Edmonton, I want to hear he’s got a long-term contract before I get too excited.

        • Lowe But Now High Expectations

          You’ve read that Ben’s wife likes warm weather? You have some serious insight!! You should try reading something more interesting or try going outside sometimes…

        • Joy S. Lee

          Just a quick FYI…99.99% of people who live in Edmonton, love warm weather.

          Who doesn’t? But, most of those have jobs….here, where it’s often cold in the winters.

          It’s not like Ben Scrivens isn’t familiar with this weather. It’s not like Ben Scrivens is seen as Henrik Lundquist in NHL circles, either. Doug MacLean (unfairly) called him a career backup during that historic display the other night, and his career has taken him through multiple stops, so he would probably like some stability to go along with Pro money.

          I’d suggest negotiations with Scrivens camp would be open for business, and there are still games to play…more chances for #30 to show that he BELONGS on THIS TEAM. Seems like a perfect fit, to me, all around. I’m comfortable and confident with the current situation, at least for now.

  • BC BOY

    Defensive deficiencies aside, I think we can all at least find some comfort in the moves made by the current GM. He has clearly already drastically improved this team and he’s only been GM for 9 months!!!

    Can’t wait until he brings in some legitimate D-men

  • Lowe But Now High Expectations

    The part about traveling out east I always hated was how late the games start. Doubleheaders start at 7 with the second game at 10. No wonder easterners know so little about western teams and players. There all in bed dreaming of the Leafs winning the Cup. Good thing they have dreams.

  • "Frank the dog"

    I’d love Scrivens to sign, the sooner, the better, but I do fear the wife will prevail if a warmer climate is offered for equivalent or close money.
    Not even sure if an overpay will do it, here’s hoping.

    As for Boston, we’ve had a string of such good hockey games we can only hope that the effort they lost against San Jose returns against Boston.