Mondays can be especially rough for some people. I’ve always liked Mondays, mainly because there is so much to discuss from the weekend in sports.
It was another tough weekend for Oilers fans, but as I walked down the stairs after last night’s 6-5 SO loss to Dallas I overheard two Oilers fans talking:
“You know, when you are indifferent these types of losses don’t even bother me,” said a fan to his buddy.
I doubt they are alone. The fans I’ve spoke with recently have a wide range of emotions about their team.
Frustration is near the top.
Others say they are watching games hoping to be entertained. The result matters very little.
Some will watch bits and pieces of a game, while others have tuned the Oilers out completely.
Last night’s game was very entertaining. They Stars and Oilers lived up to the hype of being defensively unsound. We saw ten goals. We saw a lot of mistakes, but for me I’d rather watch that than a boring, no energy, no pace type of game.
When the Stars scored late in the second period, Rexall Place got very nervous. They’ve seen that movie before and it turned out they were correct.
The Oilers are a fragile team.
They looked great for the first 33 minutes.
They led 5-2 and the Stars only had 12 shots on goal through the first 30 minutes.
But then he Oilers sat back, the Stars gained momentum and the Oilers couldn’t respond. It was difficult to watch, but not completely unexpected.
This team needs to learn how to win. They had the lead three separate times vs. San Jose and gave up a three goal lead last night. Todd Nelson has only been with this group for three games, but I asked him what he believes they need to do in order to learn how to maintain a lead.
“Develop mental toughness as a group. We have to work on some things in practice with out structure, but it comes down to being competitive and refusing to let bad habits creep him. We were up three goals, we should of made them come 200 feet every time, whether it was up carrying the puck in or making smart chips so we can retrieve the puck. We ended up being loose with it (puck) and it cost us,” said Nelson.
I like how direct he is. He didn’t rip anyone, but he said his team needs to compete more and become mentally tougher. Those aspects are on the players. A coach can encourage those traits, but ultimately they come from within.
The players really respect Nelson, and if he can’t get them to be more competitive then I’m not sure anyone can. That will be his biggest challenge during the remaining 48 games.
Anton Lander was sent back to OKC after last night’s game. I thought he played well in his season-debut. He has six shots, four hits, was 69% in the faceoff dot and played 16:37. I’m not sure what more he could do to stay with the club.
Someone suggested his demotion was due to the fact OKC only had 10 healthy forwards dressed yesterday afternoon. They don’t play again until the 27th, so if that was the case then why not send him down after tomorrow’s game?
The Oilers announced his demotion after Todd Nelson’s availability so I will have to ask this morning, why he was sent down. I realize Leon Draisaitl is here and they want to play him, but based on his play Lander did not deserve to be sent to the minors.
The way I read the holiday roster freeze I don’t see that being the reason. It just seems like another odd decision.
- UPDATE*** Todd Nelson explained Lander decision… “It was a planned schedule. Anton was going to get one game and go back
down. He will get another chance soon,” said Nelson. My issue with that reasoning is that it sends the message to players that how you play won’t impact our decisions. I feel the Oilers have too many players who feel safe with their standing on the team. That needs to change and the only way it will is by having more internal competition and for management to play players who play well regardless of salary or contract.
- One thing that wasn’t shown on TV last night during the Stars’ fifth goal was the collision between Lander and the linesman at near centre ice. Both went down hard. By the time Lander got up and back into the play he was unable to pick up Seguin. It was an unlucky play for the Oilers, but that collision was the reason Lander was so far behind the play.
- Good to see TSN broadcasting more NLL games. Lacrosse is a great sport and the more exposure it receives the more people will enjoy it. The Rush will have five games broadcast, all of them on the road.
- Tough month for our buddy Lowetide. He had to watch Oilers flounder again, but he also witnessed his Eagles self destruct down the stretch. Don’t worry LT, fans of the Dolphins, Bills, Browns and 49ers feel your pain.
DAY 15…MONTH OF GIVING…
We raised another $3,150 on Friday thanks to the Druid and Micheal Anthony Jewellers and to Carl, Pat and Dave for their great bids. Awesome.
- Bowmore 15 yr old single malt scotch
- Pio Cesare Barolo
- Nicolas Feuillatte champagne
- Kung fu girl Riesling
- Two Riedel wine glasses, Xmas glass wine charms, slate cheese board and knife set, wine air vac,
corkscrew, scotch glasses, decanter and more courtesy of Lifford Wines & Spirits.
- A stunning Pandora bracelet courtesy of Micheal Anthony Jewellers It is a beautiful blend of Murano Glass Blue Effervescence,
along with blue pave bead set.
or Cobra Driver and a custom fitting in one of their Performance Centres.
Eight 1/2 hour winter lesson packages with James Chapman or Rob Toshack, PGA of Canada
Ten one hour sessions on their PGA Tour Simulators. All courtesy of The Golf Den.
Thanks in advance. All proceeds will help out the Christmas Bureau and Santas Anonymous.
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