GDB 22.0: Desert Storm


Lucic Photoshop

(photoshop: @NewfieMikey)

We love HOME games; have Liquor Depot delivery in under an hour. Click, pick, sit back and watch the game. 

Jordan Eberle was a rookie the last time the Oilers defeated the Coyotes in regulation. In the 22 games since, the Oilers haven’t been able to muster one victory in 60 minutes. They have four wins, one in OT and three in a SO, but the Coyotes have owned them since January of 2011 going 19-0-4 and outscoring the Oilers 76-44.

However, this year has been different for Edmonton. They are a much different team, and they have exorcised many demons early this season. They will look to extinguish another lengthy bad skid tonight in Glendale.

While the Oilers have vaulted up the standings, the Coyotes have taken their spot in the basement of the western conference. The Coyotes are 30th in the NHL, 6-10-2, and the Oilers are poised for another offensive explosion.

Edmonton is fifth in the NHL in goals for. They’ve scored 16 in their past three games, and their top players are leading the way in the three-game winning streak. Connor McDavid has eight points, Leon Draisaitl has six, Milan Lucic five, Jordan Eberle, Oscar Klefbom have three and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins finally scored an EV goal. Jesse Puljujarvi has chipped in with three assists.

The Patrick Maroon/RNH/Eberle line was fantastic in Colorado. They owned the Avs at 5×5, and they also created many quality chances versus Chicago. The Coyotes simply don’t have the talent to match McDavid’s line, and with the RNH line going, and Draisaitl carrying his line, the Oilers are tough to stop.

The Coyotes are 28th in goals-against/game at 3.33. The Oilers’ offensive players should be salivating at the opportunity to face the Coyotes twice in 41 hours. The Blue and Orange are enjoying this new feeling called winning and I don’t expect them to take the Coyotes lightly.

The Oilers PP is hot with four goals in ten opportunities over the past two games. Meanwhile, the Coyotes PK is a brutal 77.4% and 28th in the NHL.

This is another game where the Oilers have more talent, and if they match the work ethic of the Coyotes and don’t get frustrated by their system, they should win.



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Benoit Pouliot and Mark Letestu draw back in, while Anton Slepyshev and Matt Hendricks come out. Leon Draisaitl will have new linemates, again, being flanked by Pouliot and Drake Caggiula. Draisaitl has been very good this year despite skating with multiple wingers. Pouliot and Caggiula could be a good fit for the big German.


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Leduc product Jordan Martinook is off to a very good start for the Coyotes. He has 5-5-10 in 18 games. Last year in his rookie season he tallied nine goals and 24 points. He had a great off-season of training and he came into camp with a lot of confidence. Dave Tippett has rewarded him with more icetime and he is producing. I love seeing local guys succeeding. 

Lineups courtesy of


  • The Oilers’ bottom six didn’t produce much five-on-five last game so it was easy for McLellan to insert Pouliot and Letestu back in the lineup. It is the right time and I’m sure both will be hungry to show the coach they deserve to stay in. Healthy competition is a great thing for the Oilers.
  • Max Domi leads the Coyotes with 13 points, but he only has two goals. He has been snake bitten despite firing more pucks on goal than last year when he scored 18 as a rookie. He’s due for a goal.
  • We were able to purchase six more tickets for our Oilers road trip in January. We now have eight seats available on the bus to Calgary on January 21st. Trip includes pre-game party with some beverages and appetizers, tickets to the game, post-game party, breakfast on Sunday morning and we won’t leave until 11 a.m. on Sunday. The worst is an early wake up call on the road. If you want in, I suggest acting quickly. Ticket info here.


From Five for Howling

The Oilers are having one of their best starts in recent. Having traded away Taylor Hall and Nail Yakupov over the summer, the team is treading in the right direction. They also have some kid named Connor McDavid in the lineup. McDavid has 9 goals and 18 assists for 27 points in 21 games played. He might be good.

The Oilers are currently 12-8-1, which is a far cry from what they were in the past few years. They still have issues with defense and sometimes with their goaltending, but they did just shut out the Chicago Blackhawks 5-0.

Here come the Oilers, and this time it’s not in a clown car.



(photoshop: @TomKostiuk)

GAME DAY PREDICTION: The offence keeps rolling and the Oilers win their fourth in a row, 4-1. They haven’t had two separate four-game winning streaks in the same season since 2008/2009, and a win tonight will give them two in their first 22 games.

OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Oilers PP keeps producing and scores their fifth PP goal in three games.

NOT-SO-OBVIOUS GAME DAY PREDICTION: Pouliot picks up his first point since October 26th. His career high scoreless streak is 14 games. He has gone pointless in 11 and sat out three, but he avoids inching closer to his career high with a second period point.

Recently by Jason Gregor:    

  • Oilers Report Card
  • GDB 21.0: Mile High City
  • Depth: A good problem
  • GDB 20.0: What a difference one win can make
  • GDB 18.0: King-sized effort required
  • Who Are You: Mark Letestu