First Star, Worst Star: November 21, 2014

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Time once again for everyone’s favorite new weekly feature: FIRST STAR WORST STAR!! 

FIRST STAR

grosenick

Troy Grosenick. 

I MEAN, COME ON! What’s not to love about this story? The 25 year old net minder gets called up after Alex Stalock goes down with an injury, makes his NHL debut 4 days later in which he records a 45(!!!) save shutout, AND his family is in the building? He might as well retire now because it’s going to be hard to top that moment! (And, uh, he got absolutely lit up by Buffalo the next game, so….)

I love everything about this video. His dad crying tears of joy. His brother, who thankfully got to take time off from being a roadie for Ratt to come watch the game. His mom showing literally no emotion, calmly putting on her coat as the rest of the family freaks out. Just great work top to bottom Grosenick family! 

WORST STAR

youre-the-worst-and-carry-on

You, us, we, the fans. With our never-ending theories about how the Oilers are purposely trying to lose, and knowing for sure that Daryl Katz is sleeping on a pile of our hard earned cash, cackling and masturbating at the thought of our continued misery while he reaps all the benefits of spending millions upon millions of dollars to own one of the worst franchises in all of professional sports. Not the mention the insider knowledge that Dallas Eakins is purposely making head scratching decisions because he has a personal vendetta against you, yes YOU and you alone, and just wants to make your life miserable by losing 4 out of 5 hockey games he coaches. 

When we’re not storming the comments section or Twitter decrying the injustices of being forced to spend our free time watching professional sports, entertainment if you will, we’re making sure to always be on the media’s case for never, ever, ever, once, ever saying anything bad at all about the Oilers.  

And it’s not just Oiler fans. Look at our ever embarrassing cousins in the east! On November 12th Leaf fans and their media were falling all over themselves to praise the team for their statement making game against the Bruins. That statement? Well…. actually I’m not entirely sure. That even a good team like the Boston Bruins are going to have an off night and get lit up once in a while? That hockey is pretty random? That the Leafs won one game? That one win in the middle of November somehow erases that hilarious collapse in the playoffs two years ago? Whatever it was Leaf fans across the land were riding high. 7 days and THREE games later? 

BURN THE HOUSE DOWN!! Fire the coach! Fire the GM! Fire the mascot! Trade everyone! Put Phil Kessel on trial for his heinous crimes against humanity! Fire Brian Burke again! 

Two losses, granted by a combined score of 15-4, and all of a sudden the Leafs season was basically over. 

And EVEN DUMBER THAN THAT, the Leafs come out the next game, beat Tampa handily, and people got EVEN MORE IRATE AND STUPID! Why? Well the Leafs had the audacity not to lift their sticks up at center ice for 3 seconds as everyone was filing out of the building. How disrespectful to the 300 people that didn’t leave 5 minutes early to beat the traffic! 

Sports fandom is a funny thing that I doubt I’ll truly ever understand. I’m as guilty as anyone for getting caught up in the emotional roller coaster that goes along with loving a sports franchise a little (a lot) too much. But MY LORD MAN, some of us need to take a serious look in the mirror and reevaluate our priorities here. At the end of the day watching professional sports is a hobby, it’s entertainment, it’s fun. Err, well, it’s SUPPOSED to be fun. 

This team needs to go through some major changes, that’s plain as day. But as we’ve seen for going on almost 9(!!) years now bellyaching and complaining and long winded screeds *shifty eyes* aren’t going to make a lick of difference in terms of what happens on the ice. For better or for worse (mostly worse) we chose the Oilers as the team we love and spend way too much time thinking and yelling about. We’re all obviously super passionate about this team, otherwise we wouldn’t waste tons of company time commenting on who is to blame for what at any given time. 

But I think we all just need to take a step back, take a couple of big, deep breathes, and realize that there are much, much better things to worry about than professional sports. I think we’re just making a shitty situation even worse by constantly dwelling on all the crappy parts of this team. I mean, I personally can’t even get mad at the ineptitude displayed by this team day in and day out. It’s more astonishing than anything else. Not a single win against a western conference team? NOT ONE? Not one shootout? Not a fluke goal in the dying seconds of the third to steal one? NINE YEARS WITHOUT A SINGLE PLAYOFF GAME? That’s astounding! 

“Being a Leafs fan is HARD” Bruce Arthur exclaimed the day after No-Stick-Saulte-Gate, which is patently untrue. Yes, it sucks when the team you cheer for (or in some of our cases all the teams we cheer for) suck. It’s not fun watching your team lose night in and night out. But no one is forcing you to watch. There are a million other things you can do with your time. The Oilers are down 4-0 in the second period? Guess it’s time to fire up my NHL 15 season where my team actually wins games. The Leafs have lost 4 in a row? Instead of sticking around at home this Saturday night maybe we’ll go see a movie instead. 

I think if we spent less time yelling at each other about who has the correct terrible trade idea that will immediately turn this team around, and more time making fun of Eakins’ derpy face and making terrible puns on Twitter, we’ll all be (slightly) happier. The Oilers clearly aren’t going to make this season any fun (AGAIN!) so we might as well try to make the most of a bad situation which we have virtually no control over. 

Now if you’ll excuse me I’m going to run away now as not to get stung by this hornets nest that I’ve just kicked. 

  • Andy7190

    And seriously, stop buying the freaking 50/50 tickets and bitching you can’t leave. The odds of winning are up there with the team putting on a performance you want to watch to the end. Use the $20 and buy your kid a paper bag full of apples. That way they can have the bag for their head at the next game for the first period, then repeat.

  • The Future Never Comes

    When I look to a coach for assessment, I ask as my primary questions, are any of the players improving underneath him and showing progress both personally and as working within the greater team unit? It looks like a definitive no to both of these questions. Yakapov and Nuge were largely the ones that looked improved early on, but that was completely due to a summer of rehabilitation and a strong workout regimen. Other then that our players have regressed, Shultz and Eberle have plummeted. Others have become largely stagnant. The team unit? Well we lost 7-1 yesterday , and five straight games at home. Theres your answer on the team improving. This organization is blasphemy!

    • elpol

      Blasphemy Indeed!

      By my count, Flames are in year 3 of their rebuild, challenging for # 1 in conference

      Oilers are in year 6 of their rebuild if you count Hall’s first year as #1, and have 3 first overall draft picks, flames have zero

      The Oilers have only been better than the flames in only 1 year of their rebuild, the 48 game season under Krueger, beating the flames by 3 points 45 to 42

      Last year Flames were 10 points better than the oilers, and The Eakins Oilers almost tied Renney and Pat Quinn for futility, 67 points, Flames had 77, year 2 of Flames rebuild!

      almost every metric the Oilers are worse under Eakins than Krueger, PK, PP, GA, GF, Wins

      THE OILERS ARE A JOKE, TIME TO BECOME A FLAMES FAN,

        • Andy7190

          You’re right, I was counting the shortened season as year one when they traded Iggy, which isn’t quite fair to count that year

          And my bad, Counting Hall’s first year, it’s only year 5 for Oiler rebuild, they’re doing much better than originally thought LMAO

    • nugeformayor

      Blasphemy Indeed!

      By my count, Flames are in year 3 of their rebuild, challenging for # 1 in conference

      Oilers are in year 6 of their rebuild if you count Hall’s first year as #1, and have 3 first overall draft picks, flames have zero

      The Oilers have only been better than the flames in only 1 year of their rebuild, the 48 game season under Krueger, beating the flames by 3 points 45 to 42

      Last year Flames were 10 points better than the oilers, and The Eakins Oilers almost tied Renney and Pat Quinn for futility, 67 points, Flames had 77, year 2 of Flames rebuild!

      almost every metric the Oilers are worse under Eakins than Krueger, PK, PP, GA, GF, Wins

      THE OILERS ARE A JOKE, TIME TO BECOME A FLAMES FAN,

  • Randaman

    Please leave things just as they are. I really enjoy the comic relief this team provides on a nightly basis.

    Did you catch Halls body language last night? Trade request to follow shortly?

    Eberle saying they are embarrassed? Duh…

    After it was four nothing I was laughing after every goal Chicago scored!

    If I want to watch a team that gives effort, I just watch the Flames and they don’t even have Bennett yet.

    Connor is coming, Connor is coming…

      • CaptainLander

        I wouldn’t be surprised if the top 5 picks of 2015 all refuse to go to Edmonton. Who could blame them. The owner and management of this franchise are so dysfunctional. I doubt a team of top criminal lawyers could defend this group. The NHL should be stepping in soon.

        • Captain Ron

          Sorry but get real!!
          Just like the players refusing to go to NYI after years of blunders, high draft picks and poor management.
          Only ever happened once with Eric Lindros. We all know how that turned out. Col ended up with a couple cups and Eric with nothing. I highly doubt that will ever happen again. Contrary to your belief, I would think these guys still understand the huge privilege/honor it is to get drafted let alone play in the NHL by any team.

          • Serious Gord

            It is you who is being unrealistic.

            The draft in its modern form really didn’t begin until the seventies.

            Since then there are arguably only five players who were regarded as superstar draft picks:

            Gretzky
            Lemieux
            Lindros
            Crosby
            Mcdavid

            Two of those five did not play for the team that had the rights to the number one pick in the NHL : Gretzky and lindros.

            And if I recall correctly, Lemieux wasn’t very happy to be drafted by PItt.

            So that is a 50;50 ratio making mcdavid refusing to play for EDM if they get the pick a very real Possibility.

            And it seems even more likely when one considers the similarities between EDM and que:

            1. Terrible and controversial ownership and management

            2. Years of ineptitude on the ice.
            3. An invisible, microscopic media market with next to nil North American reach.
            4. Lousy merchandizing possibilities (see the three prior points)

          • Captain Ron

            Gretzky was not drafted period so not applicable he chose us, Lemieux’s statement was that “he wanted to play for any team that drafted him”. There was a contract dispute look it up on wiki. Nice cherry picking of “superstar pick” which I do not recall in the first post. I was referring to 1st overalls refusing to play for the team that drafted them.
            In regards to your points at the bottom they are all known, and have been rehashed time and time again.
            I just have to think you are a little offside actually thinking a player would ever refuse to do what only one player drafted first overall, that being Lindros has ever done in the history NHL. Just an FYI Lindros also refused to play for the Junior team hat drafted him. I would chalk that up to the player and I will stand by my comment that I highly doubt it would happen again. I will never say never, just not a possible 50% chance like you insinuated.

          • Positive Ray of Sunshine

            If Serious Gord was referring to pre-draft hype then not only does Lindros belong on that list, Alexander Daigle does too. After he tore apart the Q, he was compared to everyone from Lafleur to Lemieux.

    • nugeformayor

      He is coming! I’m actually starting to get excited about that prospect because do we start playing better and not make playoffs then lose out on a true franchise player. Or do we get a decent pic and not make playoffs I will take Connor and the comedy of the insane Eakins strategies till next year to have Connor! Looks like Katz knows what he’s doing after drafting Connor he’s only gonna get even wealthier!

  • Zamboni Driver

    Want to hear humour on twitter?

    Dreger reporting that Perron is available in a trade, and Mactavish wants a “Top C” in return.

    A TOP Centre.

    For a guy who has two goals and was traded for a player who has played in 8 games this year, amassing zero goals.

    Sounds entirely plausible.

    Hell, I would think you could probably swing Malkin couldn’t you? I mean, he’s not the TOP Centre on the Penguins, so that would be fair. A guy with two goals and who can’t skate, for Malkin.

    I don’t have an ‘Executive MBA” though, so what do I know?

    Edited because I forgot to give him the meaningful goal last night.

    • Serious Gord

      If the rumour is true – and I see no reason why it wouldn’t be – it is just more evidence of MacT’s incompetence. And that he should not be allowed to make any roster moves or fire eakins and hire a new coach – a new POHO should be supervising all of those processes.

  • Zamboni Driver

    We are getting either eichel or mcdavid, send drasailt to junior ……trade everyone except Hall and RNH. Fire Lowe Mc-t and Eakins today . bring up Nelson

    • Serious Gord

      Excellent observation – perron is softly critical of the team and now he’s being shopped.

      If he gets traded you can expect an avalanche of players publically speaking critically of the team…

      • Harry2

        For sure. I don’t care how much money a person makes, going to work, and having 17 thousand people booing and hissing at you, would suck bad.
        If they can make the same money elsewhere without the drama, of course they would.

  • elpol

    It’s about Accountability. That’s all I want.

    We have changed the players, the coaches, the GM………hell we took the pictures down from the dressing room wall. Yeah that will help Eakins, you tool.

    We have changed everything except for the one thing that matters.

    Replace Kevin Lowe

  • SmellOfVictory

    Man, those Flames sure do play some EXCITING hockey. What an unbelievable game last night. So proud of this team – they make cheering for them really easy.

    • nugeformayor

      I hate the flames but hey their management draft properly, Edmonton not drafting Bennett huge mistake by oilers brass we got a centre that will never develop to be a solid top six nhl player and Calgary draft a Canadian,a winner, a tough player to play against we got a guy who put up points for a short period 20 games at end of season in junior and will never have speed or hockey sense to be a nhl stud. Bennett is the real deal and will be a thorn In edmontons side for years to come.

  • Andy7190

    I think it’s a bit much to suggest that Perron being shopped is a direct link to his comments the other night. I didn’t find what he said to be particularly out of order or controversial.

    However Perron being shopped does make some sense, though getting a top Center in return for Perron alone seems unlikely.

    • CaptainLander

      An NHL top center, no. And Edmonton Oiler top center probable.

      Fleichman? Anisimov? Richards and the fat contract? Frolik?

      All not exactly stars better then Arco and Drai today

  • nugeformayor

    A rumour (a few years ago) from a person close to the Katz family. Katz wants the franchise to be located in Seattle, close to Vancouver here he lives. (Didn’t he go to Seattle few years ago when dealing on the building).

    He wants to run this franchise into the ground (may have accomplished that already) and when Oiler fans do not buy tickets he will move franchise.

  • reaperfunkss

    I was totally convinced at the start of the year that we were going down this road……..not because I’m a genius or clairvoiant, but because Dallas Eakins runs the bench.

    Now I feel for him but everything that has happened is because of his inability to manage the bench. He lost crediblity with his team because he did exactly the opposite of what he said he would do……….let players earn their ice time.

    We all know this was a lie and now he is paying for this. Calgary has their main centres injured and they keep winning with AHL players…….why?

    It’s time to relieve Dallas of his duties……..perhaps he can write a book about what not to do in the NHL.

    • RedMan

      the only problem with this is that you refer to the Flames call-ups players as “AHL players”.

      In your fits of honest reflection, you might as well go all the way and also admit that Calgary has quietly built a very good development system that has produced legitimate NHL’ers over the last few years. Jooris, Granlund, Ferland, Baertschi – hard to watch them and honestly call them “AHL players”. The Flames youth have been doing amazing…

      Edmonton has rushed their first rounders into the NHL and neglected to find a solid stable of prospects after their first overall picks.

      It must be painful to see all this unfold in slow-motion over the years, and for so long live in disbelief until the truth is unavoidable, like a two by four to the face.

      The reason Flames fans are slow to have any sympathy is because of the arrogance of Oiler fans over the last several years who, regardless of every shred of evidence and the reality staring everybody in the face, kept asserting how much better the Oilers were because of how good they will soon be… as if it was already a fact.

      Really, get a 3 game winning streak, and the same fans will be at it again, harping on the pending dynasty and trolling Flames.

      I guess Karma has decided the Oiler fans need to eat crow for a while…

    • RedMan

      the problem isnt the coach, but the coach IS a problem… i mean, playing a full 30 seconds with only four skaters even though there wasn’t a penalty? he must have been day dreaming of a root canal, or something equally more enjoyable then being on the bench.

  • CMG30

    People should just accept the fact that the Oilers have no intention of icing a truly competitive team until the new arena is built.

    As things stand now, there’s no point in watching the games. I didn’t even realize that they were playing last night, I only really ever check anymore out of habit and you know what? I’ve discovered that I’m happier this way.

  • Captain Ron

    Don’t trade Perron you wont get back what he’s worth to the team. The guy that should be featured in a package out is Eberle. Not just because he might get still get some return but also to send a message to the rest of the team that no one is untouchable. Dump Schultz hard.

  • Derzie

    Your a joke. Masterbating really? So you write whatever that was on a site that only exists because fans talk about the Oilers. Ok we will talk about positives care to enlighten us?You should be thankful their are still fans that are still engaged to read your hypocritical drivel. I don’t need a hack jackass blogger who hides behind a ricdiculous web name to scold me on my Oilers morality.

  • SpiMo

    As a Leaf fan, thank you for making me feel better this week, I’ve been so up and down and all that uncertainty and all, you know – I didn’t read your whole column, just skimmed to the Leaf mentions Ha Ha. Must really REALLY suck to be an Oiler fan…

    Counting my blessings starting today – GLG!