GDB 77.0: DUCKS’ DEPTH

pics_duck-hunter-tricked

The Oilers might likely need a few distractions to keep tonight’s tilt
close. The Ducks will be shooting to win 50 games for the first time in
franchise history, and they will be fired up after their stunning
comeback victory vs. the Jets on Monday. The Ducks trailed 4-0 with 23
minutes remaining, then they managed to tie the game with 23 seconds
left in the third before winning 16 seconds into OT. 

The Ducks won’t take the Oilers lightly this evening.

Last
night’s 5-4 loss was one of the more entertaining games of the season.
The Oilers top line kept them in the game. Taylor Hall, Ryan
Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle were flying as they combined for four
goals and ten points. Part of me understands why Renney, Krueger and
Eakins have split those three up at times, to get balanced scoring, but
considering how well the play together maybe Eakins should just keep
them together all year next year and see what happens.

Hall has 72 points and needs 8 points in the last 6 games to be the first Oiler to score 80 since Doug
Weight had 90 in 2001. Those three were very strong last night,
especially Hall and RNH. The big difference you see between the Sharks
and Ducks compared to the Oilers is their depth.

After David
Perron, the Oilers scoring takes a big dip and the blueline play is
significantly different at this stage. When you watch the Ducks tonight
pay attention to their secondary scoring and how much those players contribute.

The
Ducks have 12 players with 25+ points, while the Oilers have six.
Yakupov would likely have one more point if he was healthy and sit at
25, but you can say the same about Silverberg for the Ducks. The point
is the Ducks produce offence from more than just one line.

Ryan
Getzlaf and Corey Perry have 83 and 75 points respectively, but then it
drops to Nick Bonino’s 47. Their top guys score a lot, but they have solid secondary scoring from both forwards and blueliners.

Player  GP  G  A  P +/-  ESP  SHP  PPP 
Ryan Getzlaf 71 31 52 83 27 61 0 22
Corey Perry 75 39 36 75 30 58 0 17
Nick Bonino 70 20 27 47 11 27 0 20
Mathieu Perreault 62 18 22 40 14 31 0 9
Andrew Cogliano 75 21 18 39 16 35 4 0
Cam Fowler 67 6 30 36 15 20 1 15
Kyle Palmieri 64 12 17 29 10 29 0 0
Saku Koivu 60 10 18 28 5 24 4 0
Hampus Lindholm 71 6 21 27 27 24 0 3
Daniel Winnik 70 4 23 27 3 24 3 0
Teemu Selanne 59 9 16 25 6 17 0 8
Patrick Maroon 55 8 17 25 10 21 0 4

And now look at the Oilers’ scoring:

Player  GP  G  A  P +/-  ESP  SHP  PPP 
Taylor Hall 69 26 46 72 -16 56 1 15
Jordan Eberle 74 25 34 59 -11 39 1 19
David Perron 72 26 28 54 -14 43 0 11
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins 74 18 34 52 -14 33 0 19
Sam Gagner 62 9 25 34 -28 28 0 6
Justin Schultz 68 9 20 29 -19 19 0 10
Nail Yakupov 63 11 13 24 -33 18 0 6
Ryan Smyth 66 10 13 23 -15 16 0 7
Boyd Gordon 70 8 13 21 -13 15 2 4
Mark Arcobello 41 4 14 18 -7 15 0 3
Andrew Ference 71 3 15 18 -18 16 0 2
Jeff Petry 74 6 10 16 -20 14 0 2

The Oilers have 104 PPP points amongst their group while the Ducks have 98, however, the Ducks have 373 ES points compared to the Oilers 312. The Ducks thrive at ES scoring and you see that in the glaring difference in +/-. 

The Ducks lead the league in 5-on-5 goals with 175, but they’ve only allowed 124 (+51) while the Oilers have scored 122 at 5-on-5, but they’ve allowed the most in the league at 170 (-48). The Oilers need more balanced scoring, but mainly they have to improve their defensive play 5-on-5.

PUCK WATCHING…

This is a classic case of what plagues the Oilers. I don’t care which new players they bring in, if their young guys don’t cut down on their puck watching at critical times in the game, it won’t matter which veteran D-men or forwards they trade for.

This Sharks goal was scored by their fourth line, not their first, so it wasn’t a bad matchup. Petry can’t watch the puck into his goalie, because he doesn’t have enough time to react to the rebound. He is in the right position, but he needs to tie up Desjardins’ stick. These types of plays are the responsibility of the individual player. Petry isn’t the only one who suffers from puckwatchitis, but the younger players have to be aware of this virus and try to eliminate it from their games.

The coaches can harp on it all day long, but until the players decide to stop doing it, these types of goals will keep happening.

LINEUP

Hall-RNH-Eberle
Lander-Gagner-Perron
Smyth-Gordon-Hendricks
Pinizzotto-Acton-Larsen

Marincin-Petry
Klefbom-Schultz
Fraser-Belov

Fasth

Tyler Pitlick didn’t step on the ice last night. He was dressed, but not healthy enough to play. The Oilers have recalled Steve Pinizotto on an emergency basis from OKC. Pinizotto was acquired from Florida earlier this season. Pinizotto played 12 games for the Canucks in 2012/2013. He is a crash and bang type of player similar to Hendricks.

You have to keep the top line together and Eakins has to hope they can carry the game for a second straight night. Viktor Fasth will get ample opportunities to shut down his former teammates.

QUICK HITS….

  • I realize there is more to the game than just points, but you need players who can produce if you want to win. Hall has been one of the best point producers in the NHL the past two seasons, and as he rounds out his overall game he’ll become even more dominant. I’m floored by fans who suggest trading Hall would be a good idea. Hall has scored the 8th most points the past two years, and he is tied for 5th in points-per-game.
Rk Player GP G A PTS ▾ S S% PTS
1 Sidney Crosby 112 51 105 156 375 14 1.39
2 Ryan Getzlaf 115 46 86 132 293 16 1.15
3 Phil Kessel 125 56 73 129 447 13 1.03
4 Alex Ovechkin 120 80 48 128 590 14 1.07
5 Claude Giroux 123 38 88 126 333 11 1.02
6 Martin St. Louis 125 47 78 125 308 15 1
7 Patrick Kane 116 52 72 124 365 14 1.07
8 Taylor Hall 114 42 80 122 388 11 1.07
9 Nicklas Backstrom 124 22 99 121 257 8.6 0.98
10 Chris Kunitz 122 57 62 119 319 18 0.98
11 Jonathan Toews 123 51 65 116 336 15 0.94
12 Joe Thornton 125 18 96 114 196 9.2 0.91
13 John Tavares 107 52 61 113 350 15 1.06
14 Matt Duchene 118 40 73 113 349 12 0.96
15 Corey Perry 119 54 57 111 391 14 0.93
16 Eric Staal 121 36 74 110 357 10 0.91
17 Tyler Seguin 121 49 60 109 416 12 0.9
18 Evgeni Malkin 91 32 73 105 290 11 1.15
19 Thomas Vanek 111 47 58 105 354 13 0.95
20 Anze Kopitar 123 34 71 105 288 12 0.85
21 Joe Pavelski 125 54 51 105 337 16 0.84
22 Blake Wheeler 125 46 59 105 339 14 0.84
23 Jamie Benn 116 42 62 104 361 12 0.9
24 Jakub Voracek 123 43 59 102 338 13 0.83
25 Jaromir Jagr 121 40 59 99 322 12 0.82
26 Andrew Ladd 124 41 57 98 308 13 0.79
27 Patrick Marleau 125 49 48 97 420 12 0.78
28 Derek Stepan 125 33 64 97 291 11 0.78
29 Henrik Zetterberg 91 27 69 96 324 8.3 1.05
30 Jordan Eberle 122 41 55 96 323 13 0.79
31 David Krejci 122 26 70 96 255 10 0.79
32 Jarome Iginla 119 44 50 94 331 13 0.79
33 Mike Ribeiro 122 28 66 94 167 17 0.77
34 Bryan Little 125 29 65 94 246 12 0.75
35 Steven Stamkos 79 52 41 93 264 20 1.18

  • Hall is in pretty good company and as his overall game improves he will only become more dangerous. The biggest improvement I’ve seen in Hall’s game the past month is his back pressure and creating turnovers. If he demands more from himself defensively and challenges his teammates to do the same, the Oilers might eventually win more than they lose.
  • Eberle is 30th in points the past two seasons. He doesn’t dominate games like Hall, but when he’s playing well he is extremely dangerous offensively. Like Hall, his two-way game needs to improve.
  • Frederik Andersen starts for the Ducks. This will be his third straight start. Jonas Hiller hasn’t played since his shaky outing against the Oilers on Friday. It will be interesting to see who the Ducks start in the playoffs.
  • I love how hard and greasy Perron plays, but he needs to cut down on bad penalties. He has to be smarter when he retaliates or tries to get in a cheap shot. I expect he will take a few over the course of a season, just because of how he plays, but he can’t take one every second game.
  • The more I watch Klefbom the more I see him as the steady blueliner this team desperately needs. I’m not saying he’s ready to be a top-pair guy next year, but in a few years I think he’ll be a very reliable defender.

TONIGHT….

800PX-~1

GAME DAY PREDICTION: It is a major stretch to expect the Oilers to win tonight. The first line keeps it close, but Oilers lose 5-3.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Mean Gene Principe rattles off four or five beauty puns referencing Fasth.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: RNH scores a pair of goals to give the Oilers four 20-goal scorers for the first time since 2006. What isn’t obvious is that RNH scores in his 2nd straight game en route to scoring again on Friday for his first ever three-game goal scoring streak.

RECENTLY BY JASON GREGOR:

  • Harry2

    Good lord I hate this team! Why can’t they put this effort together more than 6 times a year?? And for once the defence doesn’t look like a junior ringette squad

  • Harry2

    That hooking penalty gagne took was un freakin real. His feet literally didn’t even move when he clamped on with his stick.
    My number one hated word is literally, so I need to really mean it when I say it. Lmao

  • Admiral Ackbar

    I’ve been reviewing some of the posts and I think that the Oilers deserve many more supportive comments. For example, “playing well” is insufficient. If should read, “playing outstanding”.

    And “Thank you Mr. Lowe for your leadership” can’t hurt, can it?

    People, be better. Try harder. The Oilers deserve it!!

  • The Soup Fascist

    Chilean Earthquake, Hawaiian Tsunami, icebergs melting and the 4th Horseman of the Apocalypse – a desperate backcheck and keen defensive play by Eberle.

  • Serious Gord

    Little known fact: the ducks have been very average since the Olympic break 8-7.

    They got into a track meet with the oil and nearly lost. They pass way too much to my eyes.

    Fasth was average at best. Scrivens was average at best last night. Looks like the oil will have average at best goaltending next season. And they need top ten goaltending to make the playoffs IMO.

      • Serious Gord

        No team has ever made the playoffs a year after finishing 29th except Colorado this year. And colorado made huge changes in management the past two years.

        The odds of EDM making the playoffs without changing mgmt and repeating colorado’s feat are very very low.

        • Serious Gord

          Hey Gord, are you calling in tonight? if you do(they always take your call) and you have a chance to slip in a quick question, I would be interested to know what Grade they would assign to Eakins for his performance this year

          • Serious Gord

            Not tonight. But I will put it to them next time.

            I got rob brown to admit that if things hadn’t changed after Christmas then he would agree that Eakins should be fired.

            Well, after tonight the oil is less than 7% better since the Olympic break than it has been for the year. And the losses to cgy, buffalo and NYR were IMO the three worst losses of the year and they happened in the last two weeks.

            Thanks for listening.

  • Fossil

    If Hall cannot ever figure out how to keep the puck deep. This team will never ever be successful. Two games in a row where he has a good offense but it means nothing if you don’t know how to play in both ends of the rink. Serious lack of hockey IQ.

  • Oilers4ever

    Anyone who thinks Fasth is an answer need their damn heads examined. Reminds me too much of Dubynk already… One bad goal per game. He had no chance on Perry’s first goal. Should have had the other two. MacT but still be going for a big goalie in the summer or its gonna be a suck ass season again next year. Even Scrivens I don’t think is legit number one.

    Thank god this season is almost done. Had enough of loser hockey again.

    • Wax Man Riley

      And that second line center position is in need of serious repair. I hope MAcT no longer thinks that Gagner embodies everything that is an Oiler..cause if he does believe it, we have long term problems…that position should be a priority IMO