They probably played good enough to win, but Oilers enough to lose. Final Score: 5-2 Wild
Remember when the Oilers and Wild played each other eight times per year? What a nightmare. On the bright side, seeing the Minnesota Wild eight times meant eight nights where you were likely lulled to sleep at a reasonable hour. All that is obvious, though — as obvious as saying that the sky is blue and that you shouldn’t pay a hooker with a personal cheque. These are things that the people know. At the end of the day, all you can really hope for is that something interesting happens and that you fend off being lulled into a crippling boredom that leaves you drooling and questioning life in general.
Potential boredom aside, there was a game to watch. So I parked my ass on the couch and
made some coffee made myself a rum to make sure that I got through this thing like an adult. One time the Oilers were playing the Wild and I spent two full periods looking up places to take a calculus class because I thought it might be a valuable skill to have. I’m not a scientist. What the hell am I going to do with calculus? Besides, it was the “generally recommended: math skills” part of the requirements threw me off me in the end. I’m not saying that that was a good story (it was a terrible story), but the point I was trying to make is that watching the Minnesota Wild play hockey can make your mind wander. It’s boring, alright?
Despite all my dread and moaning, this might have been one of the better Oilers/Wild games that I’ve ever watched. There were goals. Breakaways. Momentum swings. Pretty much everything you would want from a hockey game except for the win. Speaking of which, the Oilers probably played well enough to win this hockey game but they couldn’t bury some prime chances, couldn’t score on the power play, and when they made mistakes Talbot just couldn’t bail them out. From where I sat, the Oilers should have put points up in the standings but they ended up beating themselves in the end. Sure, the Wild scored four goals but they were lucky to get there, quite frankly. A tighter defensive hockey team wouldn’t have allowed so many easy goals against, and the Oilers were not that tonight.
In the end, the Oilers lost a game that they could have potentially won. Life moves on. One game closer to draft day.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- Connor McDavid. Always Connor McDavid. He scored his 10th goal of the year by putting the puck into an empty net created on a nice passing play by Benoit Pouliot.
- Solid Pou tonight. Todd McLellan wanted him to have a bounce back game and he did.
- Nail Yakupov played his best game in a long time. He was driving to the net with the puck, firing away, and generating chances rather than doing not much of anything. He was rewarded for his play with his fifth goal of the season on an absolute snipe on the short side shelf, and he should’ve had more.
- Andrej Sekera was was an even +/- and played a team high 23:18. He’s been a bright spot on the back end.
- I really like the way Darnell Nurse can rush the puck up the ice. Give him some time to marinate and he is going to be a megalodon.
- Shout out to all the people that ignored the fire alarm. Hockey or death. That’s metal.
THE FACE PALMERS
- The Oilers took too many penalties again. They had two before the first period even ended. To make matters worse, the Wild scored on both attempts because of course they did.
- Not a great start for Cam Talbot. He allowed two goals on six Wild shots. To be fair to Talbot, both goals were scored on the power play, but we’ve seen him make those saves before. The rest of the game didn’t get much better as Talbot finished the night with 22 saves and an .842 save%. I don’t blame Cam Talbot for all of the goals, but I think even he’d admit that he could’ve had a couple of them.
- Taylor Hall should have had a goal in the second period but it was disallowed. The refs claimed that the Wild player had possession of the puck on the delayed penalty. He didn’t.
- It’s odd how the coaching staff is willing to bench forwards when they make a mistake. That is a precedent. That being said, why doesn’t the same apply to the defense? Jultz? C’mon, man.
- The Oilers badly lost the special teams battle. They couldn’t get anything done on the power play and allowed two goals on the penalty kill. Not good.
- Oilers were 48% in the faceoff circle.
|09:30||Minnesota||PPG – Jason Pominville (8) ASST: Mikael Granlund (25), Thomas Vanek (19)||1-0|
|09:58||Edmonton||Connor McDavid (10) ASST: Benoit Pouliot (21), Jordan Eberle (16)||1-1|
|13:16||Minnesota||PPG – Matt Dumba (8) ASST: Zach Parise (18), Mikko Koivu (29)||2-1|
|17:19||Edmonton||Nail Yakupov (5)||2-2|
|04:48||Minnesota||Thomas Vanek (16) ASST: Mikko Koivu (30), Mike Reilly (1)||3-2|
|15:37||Minnesota||Mikael Granlund (6) ASST: Matt Dumba (11), Mike Reilly (2)||4-2|
|19:57||Minnesota||EN – Charlie Coyle (18)||5-2|
BEST OF THE TWEETS
@OilersNation TWO!!! TWO NUMBER 1 DRAFT PICK GOALS, HA HA HA!
— Oilers Fan in BC (@iguessilldothis) February 19, 2016
— Late Fiennes (@MrMikeEaton) February 19, 2016
“Were you able to pick the spot you wanted on that goal?”
“Oh ya” *laughs*
I love Yak @OilersNation
— Baby Nuge (@blades_nik) February 19, 2016
@OilersNation would that have been a “Nail” Mary???
— Matt (@Spettzy94) February 19, 2016
@OilersNation unless I’m on fire. I’m not moving.
— Sonia’s Runway (@soniasrunway) February 19, 2016
@OilersNation That’s the Auston Matthews alarm!
— Jesse Ferguson (@jesseferguson) February 19, 2016
THE NORTH X NORTHGRETZ PODCAST
The boys are back from Jasper and still licking their wounds! This week they talk about McDavid’s five point night, if McDavid has a legit shot at the Calder, what could have been for McDavid this season, and other, non-McDavid related things!
- Episode 6 – Nation Battle Royale
- Episode 7 – The Brownlee Christmas Spectacular
- Episode 8 – Return Of The CTI
- Episode 9 – NxNGretz Holiday Special
- Episode 10 – An NxNGretz New Years
- Episode 11 – Is There A TV Doctor In The House?
- Episode 12 – Making An Interner
- Episode 13 – Guilty Pleasures
- Episode 14 – All Star Weekend
- Episode 15 – Disaster In Jasper