Special teams ended up being the difference. Let’s all reground and move on. Final score: 2-1 Flyers
Anybody else almost forget that there was a game this morning? These matinees can be a great excuse for breakfast mimosas but if the game goes sideways then there’s a really good chance that you’ll end up hungover and angry by lunchtime. Worth the gamble, amirite? After Thursday night’s big win against the Blackhawks, I was ready to see if the Oilers could get themselves on a bit of a run that would see them crawling out of this early season hole. Coming into today’s game, the Flyers were 4-3-1 and lost their last game so Edmonton had to be on top of their games right from the jump if they wanted to pull two points out of Philly. I guess we’ll have to give them a participation ribbon on that one.
The Oilers haven’t had much luck in day games over the past few years so it was only fitting that they gave up the first goal within the first five minutes, the fifth straight time they’ve given up the first goal. Not that a slot start was necessarily surprising considering the start time, but Edmonton was very sloppy early on and they gave Philly all kinds of unearned zone time as a result of blown plays and breakout miscues. But like they did against Chicago, the Oilers were able to weather the storm and limited the Flyers to only one goal and not necessarily let a bad start derail the whole game. That ability to get a save and bend without breaking is something the Oilers had been missing early on in the year and it kept them in the game, ultimately a chance to win the hockey game.
Unfortunately, we’re past the point of caring about silver linings and even though there was a decent effort the Oilers will leave Philadephia pointless and yearning.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- Pat Maroon scored a hell of a goal to tie the game up at one apiece late in the second period. He was mucking it up in the corners and eventually dangle his way into a shooting area where he beat Elliot low to the stick side. Great effort and a really pretty goal by the Big Rig.
- For the second straight game, Cam Talbot was really good for the Oilers after allowing an early goal. It’s amazing how much more comfortable the team looks in front of him when he’s on his game and we saw that again this morning. While he couldn’t bail them out completely, he certainly wasn’t the issue in today’s game. Dadbot finished the game with 22 saves and a .917 save%.
- Another fine game for Kailer Yamamoto as he’s been putting together a nice of run of solid efforts over the past week and change. How can you send this kid back? I mean, Puljujarvi isn’t exactly ripping it up in the AHL right now and he needs the development time.
- Darnell Nurse has been doing a great job of picking his spots for jumping into the play. He isn’t taking unnecessary risks, but if he sees an opportunity he’s going for it and it’s going to turn into points on the board eventually. Atta be Darryl. I like it.
- The Oilers were much better in the final 40 minutes than they were in the opening period. Rather than lay down and die they kept at it and got themselves back into the game, something that wouldn’t have necessarily happened against Winnipeg or Ottawa.
- I was liking the way the Lucic-Nuge-Strome looked today until that last Philly goal but they were otherwise pretty good again. They’re finally starting to gel a little bit and, as a result, have been able to generate more chances in the offensive zone which is something the Oilers desperately need. Certainly, they need to be better but at least things are moving in that direction.
- Maybe Draisaitl comes back soon?
THE FACE PALMERS
- Give up a goal in the first five minutes? ✅
- Claude Giroux opened the scoring in the first five minutes of play after the Oilers took yet another early penalty. The Flyers moved the puck around well after Russell couldn’t quite clear the zone and Giroux made no mistake as he beat Talbot high to open the scoring.
- Wayne Simmonds gave Philly the lead late in the third period after the Oilers gave up an odd-man chance in the slot. Simmonds was left alone and beat Talbot with just over two minutes left in the game. Blown coverage by the forwards and a less than stellar defensive effort combined for a late period backbreaker.
- Why are breakouts such an issue right now? In the first period, the forwards were flying the zone early and the defencemen were having a really tough time connecting on passes to the outlet. It’s a bad combo.
- As a whole, the defensive top six was pretty good today but there were still moments where they all could have made better choices. There were passes to no one, weird shot choices, and some small details that need to be tightened up.
- I wish Kris Russell would stop laying on the ice. I’m not blaming him for that second goal, plenty of that goes on the forwards for losing their men, but I can’t buy that laying on the ice as often as he does it the best possible play there.
- How did the Flyers only get called for three penalties all game? I know that was more than the Oilers got but there is no way that that crew of cheaters only committed three crimes over the span of 60 minutes. Seems suspect.
- The Oilers power play did some nice things tonight but weren’t able to get a goal when they needed one. They got plenty of zone time, and their perimeter passing was fantastic, but Philly didn’t seem to mind as since they couldn’t get many shots through on Elliot. As it turns out, special teams was the difference in an otherwise tight game.
- The Oilers had been on a nice run of faceoff success but Philly took it to them on the dot with a 56% success rate.
- The NHL site has the Oilers with only five giveaways but I don’t know if I buy that one. Anybody else?
- It’s too early for Drew. I’d only just woken up and was forced to listen to him yammer on for two hours. It’s too early and I didn’t have enough Baileys in my house.
|03:36||Philadelphia||PPG – Claude Giroux (5) ASST: Wayne Simmonds (3), Shayne Gostisbehere (10)||0-1|
|15:37||Edmonton||Patrick Maroon (2)||1-1|
|17:45||Philadelphia||Wayne Simmonds (6) ASST: Valtteri Filppula (2), Jori Lehtera (1)||1-2|
Attention – Anagrams of Kailer Yamamoto include:
Oily karate ammo
— PumpKen Price Latte (@ninjakenprice) October 21, 2017
Philadelphia Choir Boys don't take a penalty in the first. Ok then.
— Woodguy (@Woodguy55) October 21, 2017
He's listening for the sound of horses?
— John Epler (@eplerjc) October 21, 2017
⭐️ 🐟 🎣 pic.twitter.com/Zy5N0e8qDr
— NateInVegas (@NateInVegas) October 21, 2017
REAL LIFE PODCAST
On this week’s Real Life Podcast, the boys take a look at what the hell was wrong with the Oilers, the rise and fall of social media, PVRing sports, and a brand new sponsor.
Source: NHL.com, Official Game Page, 10/21/2017, 11:30am MST