GDB 74.0 Wrap Up: Avalanche @ Oilers

It was a late #TankStrong push by Jultz, but not enough for Camp McDavid. Final Score: 4-3 Oilers.

When I looked at the Oilers lineup for tonight, and saw Ference and Gordon out, I didn’t expect much, to say the least. Then when they lost Fayne and Hendricks? Forget about it. This looked like the roster of a team that was not only swimming in, but doing cannonballs into the deep end of the tanking pool. Instead, the Oilers came out like a house on fire. They were able to not only score three goals but also chase Varlamov less than 10 minutes into the game. This didn’t look like a team that was sporting more AHLers than the OKC Barons. At least, that’s how it started.

While the Oilers completely dominated the first 10 minutes of the game, they didn’t get much done for most of the remaining 50. Actually, the Oilers only registered one shot in the following 15 minutes after the Avs pulled Varlamov after letting in three goals on seven shots. From then on, the Avs controlled most of the game. They crawled out of a three goal deficit, tied things up, and didn’t give the Oilers much of anything until well into the third period. I hadn’t seen a momentum swing like this since Rachel found out that she was pregnant and Ross found his permanent inside track. Actually, that’s not true at all. It happened to the Oilers a few games ago.

Anyway…

At the end of the night, the three goal deficit that Varlamov put the Avalanche in was too much to overcome. This was one of those game where maybe the score didn’t necessarily reflect what was happening on the ice. To me, the Avalanche greatly outplayed the Oilers for massive chunks of the game and had it not been for the three goal head start I’m not sure they would have won. That being said, a win is a win and the Oilers walk away with two points in regulation. For those of us in Camp McDavid, tonight’s points put them closer to jumping another spot in the standing than it does to finishing with a guaranteed ticket.

I hate the Oilers for making me feel conflicted when they win.  

We wrap.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

RollerCoaster

  • The Oilers scored three goals in under 10 minutes to start the game. If only they could replicate those kind of starts more often… and, maybe… hold on to the lead when it happens?
  • Marty Marincin scored his first NHL goal on an absolute snipe from the slot. I love seeing guys score their first, it’s always fun to see the look on their face. Nice job, Marty, it was a long time coming. Now, if you could do something about those sideburns.
  • Jordan Eberle continued his hot streak by scoring a goal only minutes after Marincin. Eberle followed the puck to the net and knocked home the open puck while falling down. 
  • It was good to see Taylor Hall score his first since coming back from injury. To steal from Lowetide, Taylor Hall pushes the river and the Oilers are a better team with him in the lineup.
  • Quietly, Andrew Miller had a two point night. He registered assists on both the Marincin goal and Taylor Hall’s goal.
  • Derek Roy scored the winner (his 11th) by crashing the net and cleaning up the garbage. Ben Pouliot made a nice play with the puck to get it to the net, and Nail Yakupov continued his hot streak by registering an assist on the play.
  • Speaking of the Derek Roy goal… gotta love the Todd Nelson power play.
  • Ben Scrivens was dialled in tonight. He made made the saves you would expect him to, and a bunch you wouldn’t. Scrivens got shelled for big chunks of the night, but he stood tall and kept the Oilers in it. He finished 41 saves and a .932 save%.

THE FACE PALMERS

RollerCoasterPuke

  • There were big chunks of that game where the Oilers were scrambling. When the Avalanche scored three straight to tie things up I was almost sure that the winning goal was coming. Not tonight, but it was close.
  • I assume that the goal Jarome Iginla scored against the Oilers was his 300th against them? That’s probably (definitely) right.*
  • I’m starting to hate hearing about how Todd Nelson is the right coach for the Oilers, and that they should really consider bringing him back next season. The guy is in a period of limbo that must be all sorts of stressful on both he and his family. If the Oilers DON’T decide to bring him back as the head coach do you really expect him to want to stick around to coach the Condors? They passed him over once by hiring Dallas Eakins, will they do it a second time? We shall see.
  • Justin Schultz completely shat himself on whatever he was trying to do on the third Avalanche goal. Hopefully winning the Norris isn’t based on anything that happens during the regular season or else Jultz is shit out of luck! Although, when he took that delay of game penalty with less than a minute left I was really impressed with his dedication to the tankening. 
  • I can’t help but laugh at the idea that is out there about Devan Dubnyk being re-signed by the Oilers in the offseason. Why would he want to do that unless there was a management overhaul? Craig MacTavish threw him under the bus before the last season had even started with the whole “If you have to ask the question” babble. Would you want to come back to work for that guy? Besides, the brass would have to admit they made the wrong call on Dubnyk, and we all know that admitting fault isn’t in their vocabulary. 
  • Games like this do absolutely nothing for our chances in the McJesus lottery. Absolutely. Nothing.
*no it’s not

SCORING SUMMARY

From TSN.ca….

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    • 99CupsofCoffey

      I agree with you there. Seems like when Scrivens has games like these he’s shrugged off, but when he fumbles with the puck on passing (which he does way too often) he’s crucified. At least give him his due when he overperforms lol

  • jonnyquixote

    Justin Schultz’s locker must just be papered with pictures of Connor McDavid cut out of magazines, with maybe a few JS + CM scratchings hidden behind them.

  • CMG30

    I know that we should be tanking but the winning makes me feel strangely happy!

    On another positive note, Hemsky is busy sticking it to the Flames right now…

  • cmandev77

    Justin Shultz should be the captain of this team. He has very unselfishly put his Norris trophy on hold until next year so that the Oilers can draft either McDavid or Eichel. I mean he is doing everything in his power to make sure we get one of them! Now that Derek Roy guy is another story. I’m sure he is still a Sabre. Who comes up with timely goals or assists? Who has been whispering in Yaks ear so that he plays better? Who is going to make sure we don’t even end up with Hanifin? I tell you guys, Roy is still secretly a Sabre!

  • El Pindo

    Man, Nelson is in a tough spot:

    MacT
    “We don’t want to win, but we want to see what you can do. So I’ll let you coach this team for the first ten minutes of every game, and on the power play. If by any chance you are winning the game, then I’m giving the signal to Schultz.”

  • Oiler Fan 16

    This just in – Results of Forensic Audit:

    Key Findings:
    1. Fan base support (financially and otherwise) eroding.
    2. Player moral eroding.
    3. Organizational moral eroding.

    Opportunities for Improvement:
    1. All of them.

    Areas of Strength:
    1. Revenue in stadium.
    2. Beer was cold tonight.

    Conclusions:
    1. The team is terrible.
    2. The rink is actually worse than the team.
    3. Employees are finding it difficult to stay positive throughout the organization.
    4. Management is condescending, arrogant and mentally unable to compete with other teams front offices.
    5. No plan exists for turning around the franchise. We were told to look in the filing cabinet on the left, then our host ran out the door and is now a missing person. There was a scribble pad with big loopy doodles on it in there. Also found was a recipe for cajun chicken wings. So maybe there is a plan…

    Recommendations:
    1. Join the AHL.

  • Dirtski

    Seems just yesterday or so we were admiring how awful Nikitin has been. Jultz took it to a new level tonight. My Gord how in the world he sees the ice again after that 3rd goal giveaway is unfathomable. Then he’s out there like the shut down guy to button down the win. Katz wants McEichel something fierce because those orders can’t be coming from the bench.

  • Spoils

    old habits die hard – sure we should tank, but I just love watching the Oil put a win together.

    I mean how can you not enjoy seeing Hallsy’s goal scoring grin.

  • Zarny

    Brutal. Meaningless wins at the end of a worthless season. The only possible upside continues to slip away as the Oilers head towards the worst case possible.

    • Spurzey

      I don’t understand the concern. We have almost zero chance of catching Buffalo so we won’t get the 20% ticket. Second, Third and Fourth are 13.5%, 11.5% and 9.5% respectively. We currently sit at 11.5%, 5 pts ‘above’ Toronto, and three points ‘behind’ Arizona. We finish the season out against a bunch of teams scrapping for playoff position. Arizona, Buffalo and Toronto all finish the year against weaker teams than us. (Arizona and Buffalo play each other twice)

      In any case, we can expect to see odds within a 4 point range. That means the tank is unnecessary and the players need to do their best. Don’t worry everyone, I won’t tell Justin Schultz about this.

      • Anton CP

        It has to do with the guarentee top 2 picks if Oilers finished dead last. The mentality is about that Oilers lose out on even being a loser on draft lottery.

      • Zarny

        I wouldn’t say it’s a “concern”; merely reality.

        I could reiterate that Buf plays Arz twice; so the chance of Edm “catching” Buf is only zero if they win games.

        I could go on about McDavid and his 120 pts in 47 games. Just think about that and how far Bennett, Reinhart and Draisaitl were from that level last year.

        Or I could mention that Eichel is hardly a consolation prize. 66 pts in 36 games and clearly the best college player at 18. McDavid’s NHLe is 62 pts; Eichel’s is 60 pts.

        Or I could simply say that regardless of how small the increased odds are from 27th to 29th they are still better. There is actual upside.

        There is no upside to winning a couple of extra games in a season of like this. They aren’t “winning” under Nelson; they are massively under 0.500.

        Last night’s effort isn’t building confidence or momentum for next year. It simply increases the Oilers’ odds of getting Bobby Ryan instead of Crosby. Or worse.

        I’ll take better odds and actual upside over worse odds and no upside every day of the week.

      • Zarny

        You are simply incorrect.

        At the beginning of October, when the season was new, fans like myself cheered for wins. Playoffs were doubtful but we cheered for tangible improvement not another season of challenging for the Toilet Bowl.

        It isn’t the beginning of October anymore and the season isn’t new. After winning once in 21 games nothing will prevent another bottom 5 finish.

        Given that sad and pathetic reality the best outcome is to finish last or as low as possible. I don’t like it and I’m glad they are changing the lottery rules but that’s just the way it is.

        You can try to spin it that winning a couple of extra games at the end of a season like this has positives but it’s just bullsh*t. No one looks back to the Oilers vaulting over Fld and finishing 28th last year as a positive. Having a good week at the end of March doesn’t teach anything or build anything for next year.

        It simply reduces the odds of getting the best player in the draft. And sorry but worse odds isn’t better. Not for next year or the 10 that follow. And feeling bad or getting emotional doesn’t change any of it.

  • paul wodehouse

    I think bagged milk is right that out there are some terrible goalie ideas for the Oilers. If the Oil want another goalie why not go straight for the Hammburglar?

  • Didn’t watch the game just watched the highlights. A few thing I noticed. The D beat themselves! What was Shultz doing?

    The guy does not put up monster points and is a complete liability in his own end. Send him to the AHL and if someone picks him up on waivers who cares.

    Congrats on Marincin and his first goal but again seems like he had a poor D game. Also noticing Klefbom really jumping up on the plays lately. Barely winning this game, up 3-0 and they let Avs back in. D needs an overhaul.

  • Doctor Smashy

    Everybody sing …

    “Jultzing at Rexall, Jultzing at Rexall
    We’ll be a-watching the Norris tonight
    We groaned and we went and waited for a hockey team
    But we’ll be watching draft day instead
    Jultzing at Rexall, Jultzing at Rexall”

  • SSB1963

    LD with NY and Mitch Marner. I have no issue with that. Neither do I have an issue drafing Noah Hanifin or Dylan Strome.

    Neither do I have an issue with MacT trading down in the draft to aquire a defencemen not named Nikita Nikitan.

    What I would like to see is the Oilers go out and get Brayden Shenn. Put him on the LW with Roy and NY next season. Teddy Purcell is so soft.He does not go to the paint at all. If he did he’d be a solid player.

    If I had my druthers I’d buy out NN and TP and trade JS to Philly for Brayden Shenn.

    I like ROY at 1.6 for 1 season. 2m tops.Why.Just to continue to give Yak the confidence he needs to continue to develop his game to a point where when LD is ready there won’t be such a dropoff in his play with a new center.

  • El Pindo

    I swear lowe and mact must have gone above and beyond touching the clarence campbell bowl in their days…thinking they david perron’ed it and left us oiler fans with this tragic stretch of horrendous hockey