GDB 64.0 Wrap Up: Closing the Trip Out With a Win

Connor Lion King

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SWEEEEEEEP! When was the last time we could say that? Final Score: 2-1 Oilers

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If there was ever a game against the Blues where the Oilers had a solid chance of winning before it even started it was tonight. Follow me here. St. Louis moved Kevin Shattenkirk to Washington, Nail Yakupov didn’t play so the former Oilers curse wasn’t as strong, and there was a reasonable chance of seeing Jake Allen go full Jake Allen between the pipes. That, my friends, was a plethora of reasons as to why I felt confident that tonight’s two points should have been in the bag before the game had even started. Horse before cart. I know, I know…

As for what actually happened on the ice, it was almost hard to focus on the game after news had broken that Brandon Davidson got traded to Montreal in return for centreman David Desharnais. The fact that the news broke during the first period almost seemed to turn the game itself into a secondary storyline. Did this trade mean more trades are coming? He can’t really be done, can he? Why would Chiarelli move a young defenceman with another year left on his deal for an expiring contract on a 5’7 centreman? What does the expansion draft have to do with all of this? I have so many questions that have absolutely nothing to do with the hockey game!

Anyway…

The Oilers needed to find a way to win this hockey game, and after giving up the first goal they found themselves pushing right back against St. Louis and capitalizing on some timely chances that landed them with an early second-period lead that they were able to carry into the final 20 minutes. Despite Mark Letestu telling Gene in the second intermission that the Oilers weren’t going to sit back and let the Blues take it to them in the third period that’s actually pretty close to what happened. I think I can speak for many Nation citizens when I say that I was holding my breath over the last few minutes of the hockey game. Needless to say, the final minutes were tighter than we would have liked and one could argue that if not for Talbot’s dad powers then we might have been a different outcome.

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Fortunately, the Oilers bent but did not break with Cam Talbot shutting the door and keeping the Blues from cashing in a late goal to tie the game. It may not have been perfect, but that, my friends, was a big road win at the end of a long road trip.

The wrap.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

  • Milan Lucic seems to have found a string of luck lately as he scored again tonight after he finished off the play that had all three forwards getting in on the action. Lucic’s 14th goal came after he scored his 13th a couple nights ago in Nashville. On top of his goal, he also came up big to defend a teammate after Ryan Nugent-Hopkins got laid out in the corner. As always, you can check out Lucic’s scrap (his 5th of the year) versus Bortuzzo over at HockeyFights.com
  • Mark Letestu scored his 13th goal of the season on the 5-on-3 power play early in the second period. McDavid and Nuge dug the puck out from beside the net and Letestu was standing out front, ready to smash it home.
  • Cam Talbot was rock solid tonight, and a big reason the Oilers were able to maintain their lead late in the game. Talbot recorded his 32nd win of the season after finishing with 25 saves and a .962 save%.
  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins seems to be finding a little bit of touch lately as he put up another two points tonight and has six in his last seven games. There’s definitely a ways to go but it seems like Nugey is playing a little bit better of late. That’s good news for the Oilers down the stretch.
  • Connor McDavid continues to put up assists like some kind of magician. McDavid got his 51 assist tonight and to put that into context Leon Draisaitl has 54 points total. Amazing.
  • As we’ve come to expect, Oscar Klefbom led the team in ice time tonight with his 23:48 on the ice. If this is how good Klefbom is at 171 NHL games, how good will he be at 300?
  • I like how the pairing of Larsson and Klefbom has come together over the course of the season. They seem to get more and more familar with each other and that familiarity is starting to pay off.
  • The power play came up big on the 5-on-3 as it gave the Oilers Mark Letestu’s game winning goal.

THE FACE PALMERS

  • Brandon Davidson was traded during the game for David Desharnais. Have you ever seen that before? Seems strange to me to do it during the game, no?
  • Paul Statsny scored a first period, power play goal by planting himself in front of the net and deflection the point shot past Talbot.
  • The Oilers allowed another power play goal tonight and it’s starting to be a problem. I’m not saying that Statsny’s goal was necessarily a “bad” power play goal to give up but the Oilers have been giving up PP goals about as often as Tim Horton’s gives out roll up prizes lately. Fortunately, the Oilers and Blues evened out on special teams tonight.
  • I wasn’t a big fan of most of the third period. The Oilers sat back and let the Blues attack to the point where it felt like they played most of the minutes shorthanded. Thanks to Talbot for being there to lock it down when they needed him.
  • Edmonton went 41% in the faceoff circle. Here’s hoping Desharnais can be useful.
  • There were still too many giveaways at both blue lines for the Oilers and it gave the Blues avoidable possession time.

SCORING SUMMARY

1ST PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
11:07 St. Louis PPG – Paul Stastny (16) ASST: Alex Pietrangelo (22), Jaden Schwartz (24) 0-1
11:51 Edmonton Milan Lucic (14) ASST: Jordan Eberle (25), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (18) 1-1

2ND PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
00:41 Edmonton PPG – Mark Letestu (13) ASST: Connor McDavid (51), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (19) 2-1

3RD PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
No Scoring

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  • HardBoiledOil 1.0

    so sweet to not only sweep the Shames but now the Blues and also finally solve Mt. Mike Smith in Arizona. and sorry to all the Davidson fans out there but he was clearly on the outside looking in here and was traded for another forward and i’m OK with that.

  • FISTO Siltanen

    I’ll take it. Hoped for a 4-2 road trip but I’ll settle for this.

    They looked tired but closed out with a win. If they look like this against the Wings on Saturday I’ll be concerned.

  • SRELIOFAN

    I can’t believe I’m saying this, but I didn’t hate Drew Remenda tonight. This was one of his better games.

    Nice to see Nuge get a couple of points and Lucic score another goal. Hopefully this is the beginning of 2 solid scoring lines.

    #prayforplayoffs

  • KMA

    Talbot had a real solid game tonight, thank goodness.

    Hope the team can pickup a another goalie before the deadline. You can bet our opponent will run Talbot in the playoffs so we better have someone who can step up to do the job.

    • BobbyCanuck

      Let them try and run Talbot all they want…they will have to answer to

      Lucic, Maroon, Kassian, Gryba Larson, Nurse, Khaira, maybe Hendricks

      Let them try

    • Natejax97

      Flames schmames who cares…kings suck so I hope they rot in 9th.

      We are in second place folks!!!!

      Big home stand. Let’s kick some arse and make sure we keep rolling into April.

      Huge win tonight!!!! Great job. Let’s not let rogers place be a library anymore.

      Wooooooohoooooooooo

    • Crazy Pedestrian

      Really dude… ARE YOU MAD?!?!
      Cheering for the Enemy of all Enemies?!

      I know we don’t want the Kings to get into the playoffs and all, but let’s not get carried away here… I would rather have Calgary miss the playoffs by 1 point, and look up to Edmonton with (more) envy, and of course, lose out on all the lottery picks.

      When in doubt, remember the fundamental basics my friend…

      A.B.C. (Anyone But Calgary)

    • Seriously Bored

      Kings are not making up the gap and catching us down the stretch. Flames are currently best in the nhl for the last couple weeks and are still trying to close the gap.

    • I’d much rather the Oilers play the Flames or LA than the Blues or Predators during the playoffs.

      That said, it would assume that either team could make the second round (along with the Oilers), but I don’t think it hurts to think ahead.

  • The poster formerly known as Koolaid drinker #33

    That second line seems to be finding a groove. Lucic dropping them after a hit on Nuge is gonna go along way unifying that line.

  • Crazy Pedestrian

    Hmm… Montreal’s been active… made another trade, this time with Det.

    MTL gets Steve Ott for 6th round pick in 2018…

    TSN Insiders going to be pretty bored tomorrow with the majority of trades already done.

  • slats-west

    A few thoughts….

    – Davidson good luck mate you were a good Oiler ……can see the Oilers making you an offer in 2 years time!

    – what a long road trip that was grinding these guys and some look worse than others … Drai is in cement by Period 3, Kassian is only good for two periods then hits a wall, the gaffes and giveaways of #4 and #6 were unbelievable ……and a few times they were so bad that Blues player got given the puck in the slot with no defenders within 10 feet!!!

    – McDavid is the Energizer Machine for 60 minutes its crazy how he does it.

    – faceoffs again! I counted 12 times in the 1st and 2nd period when the draw went sideways (essentially a tie) where the Oilers winger or dman got beat in reaction time to the puck by the Blues player and we’d lose the draw/possession…. FOCUS!!!!

    – DADBOT WIN …… Was essentially the game …..I hope the guy wins the Art Ross MVP….. we are 10th in Conference if his save % was 10 points lower

  • slats-west

    If I’m Todd Mc I start to rotate in fresh forwards (2-3 per game) and 1-2 dman every game. It can’t just be 4th liners you need rotate the two most tired or poor performing Dman and Forward after each game

    forwards to rotate are – #67, #54, #36, #42, #44, #27, #19 #55, #26, #98, #29
    Not MCD as he never seems to fatigue but maybe in games 80-82 if playoff position is set, Eberle plays so soft I’d play him every night. Nuge seems fine too but would try him out on wing once Desharnais arrives

    Dman- #4, #52, #6, #83, #82 to rotate

    That way we won’t suffer 3rd period fatigue and sloppy play AND you can get every player engaged for playoffs.

  • Pouzar99

    Okay don’t go crazy on me, but I don’t mind Remenda at all. Sure he’s wrong sometimes, but Louis was pretty weak and the Calgary guy is a shallow homer, which is the last thing I want. Most of the time when he’s critical of the boys he’s right. I think he is actually pretty knowledgable for a play-by-play guy.

  • Johnny Stomper

    The way things are going wouldn’t the Oilers either play Ducks or Flames in the 1st round if they finish 2nd or 3rd? Assuming it’s between these 3 teams for the last 2 spots in the div and Oilers finishing in either 2 or 3.

  • Johnny Stomper

    Thought Sleppy looked good tonight for the little bit I saw(1st period). Strong board work, I’m liking his commitment to the role TMac has given him. Keep it up son!

  • Heavy Stick

    Like what Remenda said on the radio.
    ” Don’t like me, join the line outside the door. The end of the line continues around the corner.”
    At least he comments on both teams. To bad some out fans can’t handle it.

    • CBK

      Both teams? The only time Remenda comments on both teams in the same sentence is when he talks about what the opposition is doing correctly and downplays the Oilers as if they’re the same team from 2010.

      Then sure I guess he’s commenting on both teams. I also guess he forgot that he’s employed to talk about the Oilers and that more then half the teams Remenda gushes about, the Oilers are not only beating them on the scoreboard, but are ahead of them in the standings.

      • Seriously Bored

        He isnt employed to talk about the oilers. Pretty sure the guy works for sportsnet and he does talk about both teams.

        I would rather have him then Kelly Hrudy. He spent a few minutes cutting up Kopitar last night and puffing up the flames in the bit of the game I watched.

        • Hemmercules

          Remenda can be annoying but the hate around here for him is over the top. Like you said, rather have him than Hrudy. Hrudy is full homer, the flames can do no wrong. Remenda was actually praising the Oilers a lot last night. He does have his favourite players though and gushes about them a little too much at times.

          • 99CupsofCoffey

            Not sure if Drew changed from Cheerios to Honey Nut Cheerios or what, but the last few games he was more “positive” about his comments. Which was nice. Usually you can hear him grumbling under his breath.

            I like this new Honey Nut Cheerio Remenda.

  • notarealdoctor

    It’s not that Remenda isn’t knowledgeable, and it’s not that he is any worse than other (terrible) colour men like Hrudey, it’s just that he doesn’t add any enjoyment to watching the game. He’s a Debbie Downer like Glenn Healy, always warning about what bad things are about to happen, but without Healy’s occasional wit and humour. Combine that with The Human Shot Clock’s disdain for actually calling the play in favour of giving out irrelevant statistics, and you have the reason I watch 98% of the games on mute. How I wish for an option where you could just listen to the sound from inside the arena!