Congrats to Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos on winning the Super Bowl! And congrats to those of you who managed to stay awake during the entire game! I think we ALL deserve to briefly touch the Lombardi Trophy before it’s handed over to a white collar criminal, who is clearly the one who REALLY deserves the praise for winning a championship! But for now you’ll just have to settle for another instillment of First Star, Worst Star!
Welcome Back Connor indeed! I don’t know about you, but I fully expected Connor McDavid to need at least a few games to shake off the rust after being sidelined with a broken clavicle for close to 3 months. TURNS OUT he only needed 30 minutes.
*Picks jaw up off floor for 200th time* ARE YOU KIDDING ME? Splits the defense, keeps the control of the puck with one hand on his stick, and to top it all off he somehow has patience to wait out the Columbus goalie AT FULL SPEED.
And lost in the excitement of yet ANOTHER Goal Of The Year candidate from McDavid was this insane play which ended up as an assist on a silky finish by Jordan Eberle.
Connor misses what easily could have been yet EVEN ANOTHER Goal Of The Year candidate thanks to a desperation save by Korpisalo (no relation to Lauri Korpikoski or Tommy Salo). Connor doesn’t give up on the play however, and FROM HIS STOMACH he corrals the puck, stands up and dishes to a wide open Eberle while the entire Blue Jackets team stands in awe of what is happening in front of them.
So he finishes with three points on the night. Great, great return, but you could probably just chalk it up to him being jacked to just be playing again, right? WRONG!
A couple nights later the Oilers rolled into a parking lot in the middle of nowhere in Kanata to take on the Sens and Connor picked back up right where he left off, chipping in assists on back to back goals by Jordan Eberle, who I assume is going to owe Connor some money at the end of the year for kickstarting the second half of his season like this.
And even when the team is losing McDavid will pull something out of his Tickle Trunk that makes even the smelliest of bed pooing by the Oilers worthwhile to watch until the bitter, bitter end.
This kid is NINETEEN YEARS OLD guys! And he’s already performing like this on almost a nightly basis. Someone on Twitter had an alarming thought saying that this will be the worst version of Connor McDavid we see in the NHL…. He’s gonna score 10 points a night by the time he’s 25, leading the Oilers to their 4th straight Stanley Cup!! I CAN’T WAIT!
Welcome back Connor. Please NEVER leave us again!
And JUST when we thought Connor was back to held spark the team to a legit hunt for a playoff spot, the Oilers happened…
— Jason Gregor (@JasonGregor) February 7, 2016
*Rubs temples in frustation*
First it was off to Montreal, where the Oilers made all of my worst nightmares come true:
@beardsbrown He’s either going to let in 5 goals in the first or post a 70 save shutout
— Jeanshorts (@JSBMjeanshorts) February 6, 2016
A former Oiler goalie who was run out of town for underperforming, starting for a Montreal team who is on the verge of being run out of town for underperforming. The same Montreal team that had only won 5 GAMES since December 22nd. And it was a horrible matinee game to boot! This was the perfect storm for the Oilers to play Slumpbusters® and boy did they NAIL IT! Oh did I mention that Tom Gilbert scored his first goal of the year? Yeah…
“Thankfully tomorrow’s game can’t be any worse” a lot of us probably thought to ourselves. AND YET…
You have to think that’s the last we’ll ever see of Anders Nilsson in the NHL, as the one time diamond in the rough (like 2 months ago) has now lost six straight starts, putting up a .840SV% and a whopping 4.90 GAA. Even Chris The Intern wouldn’t be caught dead putting up numbers that terrible! Not that Cam Talbot was much better in relief. The Oilers were probably better off playing with six skaters the entire third period, just to salvage some of Cam Tabolt’s numbers! He’s arguably been the Oilers best player for the last couple months and this is how they repay him!
What’s that? Yes, Connor McDavid did score the Oilers only goal. Thank you for asking.
I’ve maintained for a while that the Oilers still not being completely out of the playoff race was mostly smoke and mirrors due to the unfathomably terrible first half of the season by the Pacific Division. And games like the ones we saw this weekend show exactly why the Oilers are still a couple steps away from even being a bubble team, let alone a legitimate threat to make the playoffs. Now if you’ll excuse me we have to go start planning our “Snafus For Matthews” draft party this summer at The Pint. SEE YOU ALL THERE!!