GDB 36.0 Wrap Up: Oilers @ Canucks

*makes fart sounds with mouth* Final Score: 2-1 Canucks in OT

Greetings, citizens! I hope all of you had an excellent Christmas with your family, friends, or whoever agreed to spend time with you. Were you all spoiled with gifts according to your naughty/nice Corsi? Excellent. I’m happy to hear it. Despite my best attempts, my Christmas wish was not granted as once again the Oilers played McDavidless hockey against the heathens that are the Vancouver Canucks. 

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From where I sit (pantless) there’s nothing more annoying than knowing that the Oilers are trailing the Canucks in the standings based solely on Vancouver’s ability to squeeze out loser points. The Canucks have fewer wins than the Oilers yet they have more points on the board than we do. Getting a win tonight was crucial to not only keeping pace with the rest of the Pacific Division, but also a step towards undoing the injustice of the Bettman points. Unfortunately, it was not meant to be.

The Oilers started off tonight’s game well, taking an early lead in the process, but had their play fall off a cliff in the second period. Vancouver pressed throughout the middle frame, tied the game, and probably should have led after the Oilers gave them seemingly endless opportunities to create offence. Whether it was screwing up easy breakouts or turning the puck over at the opposing blue line, the Oilers did not make this game easy on themselves. They lost because of mistakes and there were a lot to choose from.

This was a winnable game for Edmonton.

Wrap it up like Christmas leftovers.

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  • The Oilers had a fairly solid start tonight. I was wondering what they would be like after a few days off but they had legs and played with some jump off the start (outshot the Canucks 13-6 in the first).  
  • Mark Letestu walked into the slot and roofed his 4th goal of the season like he was some kind of offensive juggernaut. 
  • Matt Hendricks plays the game hard and it’s nice to see him get rewarded with an assist for his seemingly endless hard work. 
  • Darnell Nurse hasn’t played against the Sedins many times in his young career but he saw a lot of them tonight, and held his own for the most part. There were a few times Nurse’s decision making looked rushed as he gave away the puck on breakout attempts. 
  • Cam Talbot kept the Oilers in the game when they likely shouldn’t have been. That being said, I think even he would say he would like to have the overtime winner back. Talbot looks like he’s set to continue his run as the starter with another solid night. Talbot finished with 22 saves and a .917 save%.
  • We’re having a Boxing Week sale on all NationGear where you get 20% off just for using the promo code. Check out the graphic for details and head over to to pick up all the gear that Santa neglected to bring for you. 
    Screen Shot 2015-12-26 at 9.05.16 AM
  • At least we got a point?



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  • Elliotte Friedman mentioned Edmonton as a possible landing destination for Zack Kassian. I don’t like it. I’ll never forget about what Kassian did to Sam Gagner and how he refused to answer the bell for it afterwards. It would feel too dirty. Dislike. Abort. 
  • Luke Gazdic made a bad play on the icing that got his line pinned in their own zone for an extended period of time. Rather than a quick bounce of the boards he sent it all the way and the team paid for it. 
  • Nikita Nikitin is an all world goat. Rather than walk the puck out of his own zone he makes a backhanded pass to nobody which results in zone time for the Canucks, and the Jannik Hansen goal. I’m dying to know what the Oilers would get for him apart from some kind of invoice. 
  • The power play was brutal again tonight. They couldn’t get anything done. They scored as much as I did in high school going 0/3 on the night.
  • Speaking of the power play, Justin Schultz seems to be doing his best to recreate the Belanger triangle while on the man advantage. Not to mention the fact that Jultz played 27:12 tonight. HOW DOES HE DESERVE THAT MUCH ICE?
  • It was a bad night for the Pouliot-Nuge-Eberle line. They were quiet all night, and often found themselves pinned in their own zone. 
  • How many turnovers did the Oilers have at their own blue line? 
  • The Gryba/Nikitin pairing gave me heartburn all night.
  • Markstrom stole this game for the Canucks. He made some huge saves when they needed them and the Oilers couldn’t beat him. He finished the night with 32 saves and a .970 save%.


12:55 EDM Mark Letestu (4) Wrist shot – ASST: Lauri Korpikoski (3), Matt Hendricks (4) 1 – 0 EDM
03:37 VAN Jannik Hansen (11) Wrist shot – ASST: Henrik Sedin (24), Daniel Sedin (21) 1 – 1 Tie
04:01 VAN Jannik Hansen (12) Slapshot – ASST: Matt Bartkowski (7), Jacob Markstrom (1) 2 – 1 VAN


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This week we welcome Chris the Intern back and the boys talk Oilers playoff hopes, the return of Jordan Eberle, Stamkos to the Oilers, and we have a contest to give away FREE STUFF!! 

As always you can follow North x NorthGretz on FacebookTwitter and Instagram, and subscribe to the podcast on ITunes


  • dach3569

    Another one of those games where we deserved to win but couldn’t quite make it happen. I prefer winning when we don’t deserve it to losing when we do.

  • bradleypi

    It’s time to get rid of all the passengers on this team like Purcell and eberle and Niki I can’t stand up Nakitin. It’s looks like you have some players are playing their asses off and then you have a bunch of chicken pleep

    • dach3569

      Maybe you missed the game tonight but Purcell had a pretty solid game, there are plenty of guys you could call out tonight but he isn’t one of them..

    • bradleypi

      Purcell played well. Had his feet moving and thinks the game on the same level as Hall and Draisaitl. Letting him walk with the idea that Yak could jump in there and the line would keep producing is in my opinion a bad idea. He should atleast be approached about a new deal.

      I’m starting to think I’m crazy. Schultz has been through 4 coaches now and each one seems to think he’s worthy of playing a lot of minutes in all situations. Our current coach has shown no hesitation in keeping established D-men out of the line up. Yet Schultz continues to play meaningful minutes. No press box. No AHL. No trade. No waivers. I must be missing something.

  • Serious Gord

    Predictable..Will either of those made of glass injured defencemen ever be ready to play so we can bench Nikitin. Gator Smith would just shake his head about these injuries

  • Jay (not J)

    Tough loss again, wasn;t a great game but the oilers were still had a shot at 2 points. only losing 1 point to vancouver eases the pain from this bad game. Still just gotta hang in there, hard to win games without an 2 of your top 4 dmen are out. just keep your head above the water until the mcdavid and the defense make it back!

  • Serious Gord

    More oil players had bad nights than good ones. Always a bad sign.

    Vancouver has more key players hurt than EDM. This was a winnable game except – it’s on the road.

    Shultz, nikitin, gryba – all three simply awful.

    And did lander even play?

    And isn’t Khairia a better option than gazdic?

  • Oilers21

    Was in attendance tonight and here are some thoughts


    -4th line played great

    -Hall is a beast and was dangerous all night. In fact that whole line was impressive

    -Talbot was solid

    -I sat next to an Oilers fan so was able to ignore my fiancee’s taunting for the most part and talk Oilers

    -There were several McDavid jerseys in the crowd which made me excited for his return

    -Darnell Nurse is going to be a beast; his decision making was questionable sometimes but the skills are obvious

    Justin Schultz is the worst player on the ice at any given time and probably 60% of Canucks scoring chances were when he was on the ice

    – Back to the same old gong show in the defensive zone, complete with Yakety Sax Benny Hill music

    -I’m not sure how to describe it but more often than not when we have the puck in the defensive zone we either hang onto it a split second too long or rush it and give the puck away

    A small child vomited in my section

    Happy holidays all!

  • Serious Gord

    This was such a winnable game (Sedin can barely do,a shift, Hamhuis out, and many more) and ask the announcers pointed out “Oilers will look back at this game.

    Some thoughts….

    1. Schulz actually made some plays, but then he makes some brutal boneheads, and is ZERO threat on the power play. At one point Hansen gave him a lane to shoot the “deadly wrister” opting to take the pass away. tMc either he shoots 500 slap shot pucks/day for remediation therapy or DONT PLAY HIM ON THE PP!!!!!! Please stop,this madness.

    2. The phone is not going to ring for Nikita … Move on to Plan B.

    3. Ebs, Nuge and Purcell played the game too much on walls and not between the dots – so guess what the ON is going to rip on you again.

    4. Anton Lander please watch Jason Chimera’s (man do we ever miss you) GW goal . Now watch it again and again…. Try and mimic him in every way. If not change your name to Casper.

    5. Sekera you played tough tonight. Nice I hope you’re contagious

  • Glass

    Wouldn’t be opposed to a shake up… something needs to be done to bring more competent defensemen to this team. When Nurse and Shultz are your top 2 you know there is a problem. Not a knock on Nurse, this kid has promise, lets not overload him with responsibility so early.

  • Glass

    Canucks fans were too busy sipping wine in their spandex to even notice that they won. Where there more Oilers fans than Canucks ones in the library tonight? I see the forecast is calling for 5cm of snow in Vancouver, I hope they enjoy riding their bikes home in that.

    • Glass

      People have thrown around the idea of trading Ebs & Shultz or Fayne for Hamonic & Okposo. I wouldn’t be opposed to that to be honest, acquiring Hamonic for the greater good.

      • Oilers21

        So You guys think that Eberle and Jultz are crap and think you can trade them for Okposo and Hamonik?? Yeah Ok. I’m sure Garth Snow won’t block your number anytime soon. Maybe if Snow has a medical emergency and the Isles hire Steve Tambolini to take his place….

  • freelancer

    Schultz and Nikitin both had rough games and continue to prove why they will both be gone after this year. 4th linr played great although Hendricks had some rough patches and was responsible for some bad plays in his own end.

    Might be time for McLellan to try mixing up his top 6. Drai and Hall have been great but holy cow the Eberle RNH Pouliot line was been awful.

  • Vook

    Ok dudes I have been reading this
    Blog for 6’years and have NEVER posted
    Just could not stay silent any more. So what I want to know is WTF that is WHY THE F$&@!’ Are they still playing Schultz
    On the power play I just don’t get it ?

      • bazmagoo

        T-Mac….is simply along with his Crew of assistants ammasing evidence like everyone else is.

        The lack of any impactfull contact for 60 minutes was obscene…..the lack of any identifiable “supported” secondary offense was pitifull at the NHL level, the bizarre tactics in the o-zone were nonsensical and broken.

        There was no attempt to push the river or win the game, everything revolved around line matches and shutdown focuses devoid of any offensive impetus.Players were getting caught on long shifts all game because of the line matching over-focus.

        The PP is obviously being absolutely screwed up by some over or under-riding influence….T-Mac had a respected PP in San Jose,maybe he needs to audit it and remove anything he didnt bring from the Sharktank with him.

        I really must say “belly-laughs heartily” that I have never seen such a screwy-Louie System focus before…….it was like watching a piss-drunk Oildrop wearing one-eyed one legged man with a hand tied behind his back “competeing” in the Finals of an ass-kicking contest.

        I guess we can fairly say no one is “showcasing” players priming them for trades with efforts like this from the Coaching staff.The more the Oilers lose and less offensive statistical “fluff” they produce the higher the price of required assets they will face, and the lower their asset buying power will be.


        • bradleypi

          Ironiclly I think Dellow is a huge driver behind many decisions the oilers make,even in what they ask of players….it was no joke to say Eakins played for Corsi….which would mean something if there was such a thing as Corsi to play for….corsi is made-up garbage…it is an “advanced-stat” which supposedly connects numbers to dynamic sequences which result in goals…it is a hoax…no correlations exist….staistics are the end results of dynamic actions and can never truthfully represent anything more.For christsakes Dallas WAS due to Dellows influences forcing his men to all play specific ways to chase a Wild Goose, they HAD TO MAKE ODD MISTAKES because they were being forced to repeat odd non-linear playactions trying to reproduce dynamics which arent sructurally catalysed in most cases…lol.

          Dubnyk LOVES Corsi because Eakins mindless pursuit of the “advanced stats mirage” got him out of jail in Edmonton.

          There is NO SUCH THING AS corsi ok kids? Dont even say the word especially not 3 times in front of a mirror or Dallas Eakins will jump out of your mirror and make you chop wood and haul water until you say uncle or swear to never eat another Donut…

          Numbers CANNOT BE USED to reverse engineer dynamic causality….its just not possible…and anyone who tells you different is a Snake-oil salesman trying to work you like a Short-Handled Community Pump….lol.No Dorothy…there is no such thing as Corsi even if you click your heels together 3 times.

          Dellow is to blame for Schultzes and Yaks and Nuges and others mishandeling,his BS directly and wantonly harmed their careers IMHO….and still continues to cause mis-valuations and disconnects which are now negatively impacting more players.

          Just wait…the fun has only just begun,Dellow almost has the the Oilers on their knees again….all he needs is 5-10 more games of pumping his non-validated advanced stats poison into T-Macs Processes to bury them for the season.Then he can help out with the trades and begin to poison another round of NHL players by proxy as soon as we bring them in.

  • Jay (not J)

    1. At least the Oilers didn’t get blown out on HNIC tonight.
    2. I hate the Canucks. I really really do.
    3. I hate Zack Kassian. He is only qualified to make license plates. Or shovel snow. I’d wear a bag on my head if he became an Oiler.
    4. Jim Hughson isn’t worthy to carry Bob Cole’s jockstrap. I don’t care about Sedin not being able to sit. I don’t care about how many times the Canucks missed the net. Go back to voicing video games. Just go away.

    • bazmagoo

      The so called MSM say Kassian has baggage.

      So what, most players have baggage and end up with successful careers, Tyler Seguin, MacTavish, Theron Fleury, etc

  • .

    I gotta say I am perplexed at the personnel and their usage.

    Shultz playing more than Sekera.. and for that matter Darnell…. Shultz didn’t have a horrible game, but he didn’t do much to help the Oilers win. I thought Sekera was playing much better all game long.

    Why is Khaira not playing? He is better than Gazdic….

    Nugent Hopkins has disappeared… 36% in the faceoff circle, -1 on the night. His last five games he has been a -7 with one assist.

    The Oilers can complete for a playoff spot… They will need to win some games to do so… I can;t understand the love affair with Shultz, why Nikitin is playing over something in the AHL which would be better (or even i don’t know.. trade for a 5th defenseman… A LA King #6 defenseman is likely a #4 defenseman in Edmonton…).

    Chiarelli should make a trade or two and get something into this lineup…

    If Ryan Johansen is available..
    Geeze, Taylor Chorney is better than Niktin.

  • bazmagoo

    RNH is garbage, utter useless garbage.

    Said this for months.

    Chiarelli is an incompetent.
    Should be fired tomorrow for willfully doing nothing.

    Schultz is gutless noting, simply release him.

    • Reds

      You are easily the worst commenter on this website and there’s a couple doozies but you take the cake.

      Notice how Verdad constantly posts his same garbage (FIRE CHIARELLI) every time the Oilers lose, and only when the Oilers lose.

      Verdad vanishes when the Oilers win because his act doesn’t work when the Oilers win.

      Verdad should take another sport up like competitive knitting because he’s clueless when it comes to hockey management.

      • Stack Pad Save

        My wife knits, trust me, it is too complicated for Verdad2.o to follow.

        If you actually watch the game you have to feel for RNH playing with Eberle and Pou right now.

        Every single time that line gets hemmed in their zone Ebs or Pou get a pass on the half board and cant move the puck efficiently out of their own end. Plus anyone playing with Schultz last night was sure not to get a pass on their stick. Even Craig Simpson commented on how bad of a passer he was last night.

        There is a reason Eberle only has 3 assists this season and it is because he is terrible right now. He had Nurse streaking the net on a 3 on 2 and Nurse drove around the D-man and was open and Eberle passed it to the corner.

        RNH is not the problem of this line. He is even winning face-offs right now. Also WTF is RNH doing in front of the net on the PP? The PP needs to be reworked and they need to separate RNH and Drai, they both work best of off the half-wall.

        • Oilfaninvan

          Chiarelli is an incompetent, keep reminding yourself of that.
          He has had many chances to deconstruct this team and has ignored all oppornities.
          Instead, we are left with garbage, heartless , gutless garbage.
          Scultz, RNH , and Eberle prime examples.
          All true Oiler fans knew this when Chiarelli took over, yet he decider to sleep away the summer.
          Imagine this team with O’Reilly instead of RNH.
          Imagine this team with Johansen without RNH.
          Imagine this team with Stempniak and no Eberle.
          Imagine this team with just no Schultz.

          • Reds

            True Oiler fans don’t harp on a General Manager within less than a calendar year.

            Scratch that, Smart Oiler fans don’t harp on a GM less than a calendar year in and have reasonable expectations.

            You’re far from one of them.