Ticket refunds should be a thing. Final Score: 5-0 Sabres
Coming into tonight’s game, I had this one circled as another ‘must win’ for the Oilers. The last time these two team met, the Oilers completely dropped the ball and were made to look like fools by a Sabres team that had no business beating them. That said, it’s tough to win when you only compete for 20 minutes of an entire hockey game, or in the case of tonight’s game, not at all. As far as winnable games go, this was one of those strokes of luck where the Oilers were playing a garbage team on the second night of a back-to-back set and there was no excuse to not to walk away with two points. Instead, they refused the gift and offered up one of the worst efforts of the season.
Right from the moment the puck dropped, it didn’t look like the Oilers cared much about keeping their winning streak alive. They were outshot, outworked, and outscored by the 30th place team that was playing their second game in a 24-hour span. They were bad in every way. Quite frankly, the fans in attendance should have been given a gift basket on their way out to try and provide some value for their money. Aside from stating the obvious, that this game was as bad as it gets on almost every level, there’s not much else to say. From management to players on the ice, the Oilers organization should be embarrassed about what we just watched because I certainly am. I choose to watch this hockey team, you clowns are responsible for it.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- This game is over.
- The Khaira-Strome-Slepyshev line was easily the best trio on the night. They were the only ones that were actually able to generate something positive with a higher frequency than a lunar eclipse.
- Connor McDavid is still an Oiler, but he deserves better than this. He deserves a management team that knows what they’re doing. He needs to play better and we know he will, but can the brass surround him with the players that can make an impact?
- Al Montoya came into a no win situation and was solid in relief of Cam Talbot again. Sure, he allowed another power play goal against but I’m pretty sure Patrick Roy himself wouldn’t have been able to do much while playing behind this gong show of a PK formation. Montoya gets the next start or nah?
- After getting pumped in the faceoff circle on Saturday night against Vancouver, the Oilers rebounded nicely with a 58% success rate against the Sabres.
- At least the Oilers led in hits (43-23)? Oh right, that’s because they never had the puck.
- At least Pouliot didn’t score?
THE FACE PALMERS
- The Oilers allowed the first goal for the 29th time this season. 29th! Unbelievable.
- Sam Reinhart opened the score (probably did it for Griff) with a power play goal, which seems like an Oilers tradition at this point. Somehow it felt worse that the puck just barely trickled over the line. Almost more insulting, somehow.
- The Sabres added to their lead only 17 seconds in the second period as Ryan O’Reilly outmuscled Puljujarvi in the slot and put the puck past a helpless Talbot. The whole sequence was a gongshow as Lucic got outworked on the boards which led to the puck ending up on O’Reilly’s stick. It goes without saying that it was a dog farts way to start the period.
- Zemgus Girgensons got the Sabres’ third goal of the night which left the crowd so quiet that you could hear the disappointment in their hearts.
- Jack Eichel chased Cam Talbot with a perfectly placed wrister that beat the goalie right under the bar. And could you believe it was on the power play? I’ll give you a moment to recover from the shock.
- Terrible night with the puck. They couldn’t pass, they couldn’t break out of their zone, and they couldn’t sustain any kind of pressure. Horrible puck management by the Oilers.
- Cam Talbot was supposed to be a stabilizing force between the pipes tonight and he was anything but. I know the team in front of him was also bad but there were some very stoppable pucks that got past him. Another forgettable night for Dadbot.
- I counted four brutal giveaways for Milan Lucic in the first period alone. The play was dying on his stick and that is a massive problem.
- Why can’t the Oilers kill penalties at home? Why is it that they can be so good on the road but completely useless at home? They allowed three goals on four power play chances tonight. This nightmare won’t ever end.
- Not to be outdone, the power play is pretty much useless all of the time and, as expected, did absolutely nothing again tonight (0/2). Gregor talked about it this morning, the power play has only been able to succeed at a 10% clip over the past 27 games.
- The last thing I want to do is a #BeetCast and there’s something even more offensive about having to do one because of the Buffalo Sabres. The Sabres are terrible and the Oilers should feel bad for making me feel bad. For the rest of you, feel free to join in and ask questions over on my Twitter.
|14:56||Buffalo||PPG – Sam Reinhart (9) ASST: Rasmus Ristolainen (17), Jack Eichel (27)||1-0|
|00:17||Buffalo||Ryan O’Reilly (12) ASST: Scott Wilson (2), Sam Reinhart (9)||2-0|
|07:25||Buffalo||Zemgus Girgensons (4) ASST: Kyle Okposo (19), Jack Eichel (28)||3-0|
|11:39||Buffalo||PPG – Jack Eichel (20) ASST: Rasmus Ristolainen (18), Kyle Okposo (20)||4-0|
|17:25||Buffalo||PPG – Ryan O’Reilly (13) ASST: Sam Reinhart (10), Jack Eichel (29)||5-0|
“Well ya can’t win 8, 9, 10 in a row unless you win the 4th one.” – Rob Brown
— Ryan (@IAmByks) January 24, 2018
Oilers 17/18. The PK giveth and the PP taketh away.
— MrSmith (@IIMrSmithII) January 24, 2018
Saw a green Chevy today #NOPE
— Rick Lopez ☄️ (@rick_dbp) January 24, 2018
33 power-play goals against on home ice this season in 71 kills. 53% . Incredible, might never be repeated.
— Ryan Rishaug (@TSNRyanRishaug) January 24, 2018
You’ve been pretty quiet the last bit here, get the wrap up finished ?
— Mega Tron (@rocknrolltruckr) January 24, 2018
It might be time to get “beet life” knuckle tatts. It’s not joke anymore, it’s a lifestyle choice.
— Nathan McLean (@nathanmclean0) January 24, 2018
THE SECOND HALF NATIONDRAFT
The first regular season NationDraft is coming to an end, which means we’re ready to introduce our mid-season NationDraft! This is your chance to put your failures of the first draft behind you, and pick a whole new team. The first half of the season is behind us and we have a pretty good idea of who the scoring leaders are and how the league is trending. If you’re one of the lucky ones who nailed their picks the first time, you can pick the same team and just make a couple adjustments. Then you’ll be on your way to one of our awesome grand prizes!
Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 01/23/2018 – 10:00pm MST