The power play cost them the streak. Final Score: 4-2 Rangers
When the Oilers faced the Rangers last Friday night, it was an absolute barn burner of a game, and gave me all kinds of indigestion. Focusing on the defensive end of the rink was a suggestion at best. I don’t know when was the last time I saw 12 goals in a game, but it’s been a long time. That game was both stressful and endlessly exciting, and seemed like a fitting tribute on Glen Sather night. Friday’s game was a tribute to the 80s, when the Oilers could score their way out of their problems and still come out with a win. This was not like that.
Tonight’s game started out as though one team was skating on ice while the other was moving through sand, and I don’t think I have to tell you who was who. As far as starts go, the Oilers started were like 10 pounds of shit in a five pound bag – it was bad. Part of that could be attributed to playing on back-to-back nights, but that still doesn’t account for all the errant passes and consistently poor decision making. Finding yourself trailing to the Rangers is setting yourself up for failure, and the Oilers allowed them to take the lead on three separate occasions.
Despite being outplayed, I would say that New York wasn’t even close to playing their best hockey. It’s not like the Rangers shots the lights out, like the Bruins did last night, but it seemed like they were able to score on any chance they got. For me, this was a winnable game for the Oilers but they blew most of the chances they had to get anything going. The Oilers squandered so many power play chances that it was almost like they were doing the Rangers a favour, and killing time off the clock. I’m not overly surprised they lost this game. Especially when you think about how little the Oilers got done with twelve minutes on the man advantage.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- ROB KLINKHAMMER SIGHTING! Welcome back, Rob. I had almost forgot he existed.
- Taylor Hall is a warlord. He keeps not only his point streak alive but his goal scoring streak, as well. He played like hot fire, and finished the night with a goal (his 15th) even though he could have had more.
- Jordan Eberle has been scoring all the goals since he got the winner against Boston in the shootout. His parents were at the game again, and I’m thinking the Oilers need to bring them on the rest of the trip. Eberle scored his eighth of the year on a breakaway and absolutely roofed the puck past Lundqvist.
- Darnell Nurse is arguably the Oilers’ best defenceman right now which is both a tribute to him and a jab at the organizational depth at the position. Nurse keeps getting better and better, and I’m convinced that the first pairing defenseman we’ve been looking for is only a few developmental years away.
- Andrej Sekera has really started to play well but he and Darnell Nurse are carrying too much of the load. Klefbom can’t come back soon enough.
- I love how Brandon Davidson has been playing this season. He went from a feel-good story to a genuine contributor on the back end.
- The penalty kill was excellent tonight, especially with the 5-on-3 midway through the third period. The Oilers killed off 4/5 on the night.
THE FACE PALMERS
- Not a great start for the Oilers. The Rangers came out looking for a win and the Oilers looked like they were going to let them do it. Although the shots through 20 minutes were only nine to six in favour of the Rangers, this was not a great period of hockey for the Oilers.
- Won’t lie to you guys: Khaira > Klinkhammer.
- This wasn’t a great night for the Ders. I’m not sure whether he had an off night or he’s finally coming back down to earth, but the Oilers didn’t get the kind of goaltending from Nilsson that they were getting last week. Nilsson finished the night with 17 saves and an .850 save%. I’m not saying all the goals were Nilsson’s fault, but he has been stopping most of those pucks lately. It will be interesting to see who starts against Chicago. Thoughts?
- I really dislike Mats Zuccarello. This guy has been an Oiler killer this season, despite his smurf-like stature.
- How many goals have been scored against the Oilers with under two minutes left to go in periods? Rick Nash scored another one tonight almost immediately after the Oilers came back to tie it. Ugly.
- Going 1/6 on the power play, the Oilers were hardly a threat with the man advantage. In their first two chances, the Oilers couldn’t even get set up in the Rangers’ end let alone score a goal. If not for Taylor Hall’s power play goal those PP minutes may have been better served learning how to knit.
- Another day. Another injury. Iiro Pakarinen left the game after blocking a shot in the first period.
|05:04||NYR||Mats Zuccarello (14) Snap shot – ASST: Keith Yandle (15), Rick Nash (13)||1 – 0 NYR|
|05:12||EDM||PPG – Taylor Hall (15) Wrist shot – ASST: Leon Draisaitl (18), Teddy Purcell (14)||1 – 1 Tie|
|07:54||NYR||Dylan McIlrath (1) Slapshot – ASST: Keith Yandle (16), Dominic Moore (3)||2 – 1 NYR|
|18:20||EDM||Jordan Eberle (8) Wrist shot – ASST: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (15)||2 – 2 Tie|
|19:21||NYR||PPG – Rick Nash (10) Wrist shot – ASST: Mats Zuccarello (13), Derick Brassard (13)||3 – 2 NYR|
|19:56||NYR||EN – Jesper Fast (5) Wrist shot – ASST: Dominic Moore (4), Viktor Stalberg (6)||4 – 2 NYR|
BEST OF THE TWEETS
Changing my name to Connor Hall so I can have the best of both worlds #Oilers
— Connor Halley (@ConnorHalley) December 16, 2015
— Noel May (@Noel_May) December 16, 2015
@OilersNation that’s still an improvement on passing it to the other team.
— Kevin Maloney (@Kevin_F_Maloney) December 16, 2015
@OilersNation Ebs parents now need to come to every game.
— greenlemons (@cdnhockey10) December 16, 2015
— Kent Strayer (@Kent_Block) December 16, 2015
@OilersNation and queue the trade talks.
— Jules Plamondon (@jplamondon7) December 16, 2015
@jsbmbaggedmilk I thought you said we were never going to lose again
— Jesse Foster (@fozzybear06) December 16, 2015
Talk to me Twitter. Hit me up on Twitter at @jsbmbaggedmilk for your chance at ending up in the GDB Wrap Up.
THE NORTH X NORTHGRETZ PODCAST
You’d better find a spot on the floor and clear some time because uncle Brownlee stopped by to tell stories. This week the boys (and Brownlee) cover everything from goaltending, to the salary cap, to how Robin met Glen Sather.