The Oilers, in case you hadn’t heard, got absolutely stomped last night in their home arena by the Buffalo Sabres. It was 5-0. It was gross.
According to Jim Matheson, the Oilers’ playoff hopes took a “huge hit” with that loss last night. I mean, he isn’t wrong. Edmonton, according to Sports Club Stats, saw their playoff odds decrease by a whopping -0.4 per cent last night, sliding all the way down from a 0.7 per cent likelihood to a 0.3 per cent likelihood of making the playoffs.
There are 34 games left in the season, and while Edmonton has a bunch of games left against divisional opponents, they’re 12 points out of a playoff spot right now. They would have to jump over Chicago, Anaheim, Los Angeles, Minnesota, and Colorado to slide into the final wildcard spot. None of those teams are bad and they’re all playing each other a bunch in the final few months of the season.
I think it’s safe to say that it isn’t going to happen. The Oilers are going to miss the playoffs. Sorry, but it has to be said.
I asked questions about Peter Chiarelli the last couple weeks. What question would you ask him and which move would you reverse if you could. But this week, I wanted to keep the tone a little lighter because it’s a damn morgue around here right now and we’re all sick of talking about Pistol Pete.
That brings us to this week’s What Would You Do Wednesday question. How are you going to play out the rest of the season? Are you going to keep watching the games? Are you going to cheer for losses like back in the good old Fall for Hall and Fail for Nail days? Or do you still have a faint hope that the Oilers can go on a run and make up the necessary ground to reach the playoffs? And, finally, are you going to jump on a bandwagon? Or are you an Oilers-only fan who’s going to be salty that the team isn’t involved in the big dance?
In regards to the bandwagon, here are some options…
- The Vegas Golden Knights. How can you not love this story? The Golden Knights, in their inaugural season in the league, are flying. They have the most points in the Western Conference, and, beyond that, are fun to watch. The Golden Knights score a bunch of goals, play hard, and are one of the league’s most entertaining shows.
- The Winnipeg Jets. Being born in 1993, I’m not old enough to remember a point in which there was an Oilers and Jets rivalry. To me, they’re the new and likeable Canadian team. The Jets are going through not only their best season in Winnipeg, but their best in franchise history dating back to their days as the Atlanta Thrashers. I would love to see a Canadian team win a Stanley Cup, and, right now, it seems the Jets are our best hope.
- Whoever plays Calgary. Whether it’s during the season or during the playoffs, cheering against the Flames is a good time. Remember last year when they got swept by the Ducks in the first round? Hell yeah. That almost makes up for when the Ducks beat the Oilers in an incredibly frustrating seven-game series a couple weeks later. If the Oilers are going to miss the playoffs, it would be soothing if the Flames did too.
- Whoever plays Toronto. They aren’t even a geographical rival, but I swear Leafs and Oilers fans have some of, if not the best beef in the league right now. Leafs fans filled up Rogers Place back in November in that game where Kris Russell scored on his own net, and boy was it annoying. The Leafs haven’t done anything since the league expanded beyond six teams, and their fans are still obnoxious, carrying on as if they’re hockey’s Yankees. Could you imagine if they actually won?
- The Canadian Olympic Teams: It might be the dominant Team Canada teams we’ve seen the past few years loaded with NHL stars, but it’s still hockey with Canada on the jersey. Why not deeply invest in Ben Scrivens and Rob Kilkhammer living out their dream in South Korea? Also, the Canadian Women’s Team is always a good bet for gold. Enjoy watching our boys and girls represent Canada at PeyongChang for a few weeks to cure your Oilers-related blues.
- Baseball. Hey, spring training is right around the corner. Pitchers and catchers are reporting in three weeks. Hope springs eternal. Just throw on a baseball game, go outside and enjoy the nice weather, and forget that hockey even exists until the draft lottery rolls around. I think the Jays might be OK this year. Like, second wild card OK. Come join us at Blue Jays Nation for good baseball times.
What say you, Nation? Where are you re-directing your focus for the rest of the season? Are you still holding out hope on this hapless Oilers squad? I mean, Hope Will Never Die, right? Or are you adopting a new team for the next few months? Let us know!
WWYDW IS BROUGHT TO YOU BY PRO AM SPORTS