We won? We won! Final Score: 2-1 Oilers.
After Saturday night’s game, I came into tonight with below ground level expectations. Not only have the Oilers played like hot garbage over the last two games, they’re still missing Taylor Hall and Benoit Pouliot. Looking at the roster in this morning’s GDB, I’m sorry to say that I didn’t really have much faith in a team that ices Luke Gazdic on the “third line.” No offence to Luke, but the third line is supposed to be above his pay grade, and once again the Oilers lack of depth continues to pose a problem. Actually, if you were to look at the starting roster you could probably argue that the Oilers had three third lines tonight.
Despite the depleted lineup (Taylor Hall and Benoit Pouliot were both out), the Oilers were still able to pull out a win. The guys who were expected to step up did exactly that (Teddy Purcell notwithstanding). Jordan Eberle stepped up with two assists, Nail Yakupov scored the winner, and the Oilers roll out of Jersey with two (arguably unexpected) points. After the start the Oilers had, I’m not sure how many people would have predicted that win. When the Devils scored on their second shot of the game I sat back thinking, “here we go again.” I was happy to be wrong, tonight. I couldn’t watch another loss like we saw against Toronto.
As for the Devils, 33 people saw them lose tonight and they can probably leave through the front door without being noticed. I’m not sure what was going on in Jersey tonight, but apparently everyone was invited. I Googled Bruce Springsteen tour dates, but he’s not touring right now so I’m not sure where everyone was. It’s just our luck, ya know? The Oilers finally played well defensively, won a game on the road, and there was no one in the building to get angry about it.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- I like knowing that Oilers games are going to end early. It leaves ample time to get over the Oilers related rage, and do absolutely anything else with your time.
- Nail Yakupov scored his 6th goal of the season on a hell of a shot on the power play. I can only hope that the Oilers don’t give up on this kid. Has he performed like a first overall pick generally would? Of course not, but he has looked way better in the second half of this season. Not to mention, the kid is only 21 years old and has yet to play 200 games in the NHL. Let’s take a breath before calling him a bust just yet. He has one less goal than Alex Galchenyuk – the difference in points comes from assists. To borrow (read: steal) from Steve Dangle, I wonder who plays on the better team.
- I liked seeing Oscar Klefbom score again. He’s been playing quite well since his recall, and is a big part of the Oilers future regardless of how dim or bright that may be.
- After letting in the first Jersey goal on their second shot, Ben Scrivens made all the saves he was supposed to make. It was a nice game overall, for Scrivens, especially since Viktor Fasth has been getting the bulk of the starts lately. Scrivens finished with 13 saves and a .929 save%.
THE FACE PALMERS
- Another terrible start for the Oilers tonight. Let me know how many of you are surprised. They were able to bounce back, but falling by a goal after the first few minutes is never a good idea.
- At least there were only 75 people in the stands to see the Devils lose.
- Nail Yakupov left the game in the first period after colliding with Steve Bernier. Just in case you thought that his year couldn’t get any worse. He did come back with what looked like a few stitches in his face.
- How many 3rd lines did the Oilers have tonight? I couldn’t keep track.
I feel bad for the people with real jobs that couldn’t make it home for a 5pm MST start.
- The Devils made the Stanley Cup finals in 2012 and their arena was only half full tonight. The Oilers have been sucking since Sexy Back and they’re jacking up ticket prices again. Unbelievable.
BEST OF THE TWEETS
— Taylor S (@phreebassist) February 10, 2015
Klefbom has more points this year in the NHL than he did his draft year in Sweden
— OvenChicken (@OC__8) February 10, 2015
If Yak realizes his 3/4 shot is harder than 95% of the NHL shots, but 236% more accurate he’ll score 30.
— Woodguy (@Woodguy55) February 10, 2015
Yakupov has one less career goal than Galchenyuk but 24 fewer assists. I just wonder much of that gap is the teams they’re playing on.
— Steve Dangle Glynn (@Steve_Dangle) February 10, 2015
— Jeanshorts (@JSBMjeanshorts) February 10, 2015
— K J Kent (@HankSensei) February 10, 2015
When Kevin Quinn goes to the hardware store and asks for a hammer and NAAAYYYYEEERRRS, do they know what he’s talking about? #Oilers
Whatever anti goal scoring parasite that had rooted itself into Yak has found its way into Purcell. #LawdHaveMercy
— TheTowelBoy (@TheTowelBoy) February 10, 2015
— Ryan B. (@IAmByks) February 10, 2015
@OilersNation Without OT or SO?! Can’t be real…
— Benny (@BeeKayDubya) February 10, 2015
— Kevin Radowits (@sportsjunkie007) February 10, 2015
As I told you on Saturday, I’m going to be announcing another contest this week and it’s going to be a photoshop contest. Get your popcorn ready.