GDB 64.0 Wrap Up: We’ll always have the first period, Oilers lose 4-2

Going forward, all games must end after the first period. Thank you. Final Score: 4-2 Predators

I would be lying to you guys if I said I felt good about tonight’s game. The Oilers are missing all kinds of regulars from their lineup, and that’s not exactly a great spot to be in when you’re facing the Nashville Predators. The Preds have a rock solid lineup that could potentially win the Stanley Cup in June and to see them on the schedule doesn’t exactly inspire confidence, ya know? Case in point was when I felt a tickle of excitement in my loins just because the Oilers made it through the first shot of the game unscathed. When they built a two-goal lead in the first I felt like my heart was filled with rainbows. Needless to say, it’s been a weird year.

Despite the early lead, I still had fears that the Oilers would find a way to let the walls cave in anyway. Early on, everything was going well for the Oilers but then they started getting caught with turnovers that allowed the Predators to claw their way back into the game and eventually take the lead. For the first 20 minutes, the Oilers played like a team that was all about their business and they were making it work with a little bit of a skeleton crew going on. Unfortunately, that first period ended up being a finish line for the home team as they spent the rest of the night coughing up the picking and giving the Predators all the chances they needed to win the game.

The wrap.

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  • At this point in the season, Connor McDavid’s chase of a second straight Art Ross Trophy is one of the biggest reasons to get excited about an Oilers game. I hate to say it, but it’s true. And when he makes magic like he did on the first goal of the game where he left Rinne looking ridiculous in his crease, it makes all of the suffering worth it. Add two more McPoints to the pile.
  • Leon Draisaitl scored his fourth power play goal of the season after he took the puck in flight and ripped a snap shot past Pekka Rinne on the blocker side. Big Sexy 2.0 has been hot over the past month and he kept the good times rolling… at least until the end of the second period anyway.
  • Cam Talbot needed to have a bounce-back game after that Tuesday’s loss and he got it tonight… for the most part… maybe the first 35 minutes. Despite the finish, I would say that he will get more blame than he probably deserves after this one because he was solid and he got left out to dry on a few of those goals. Talbot finished the night with 37 saves and a .902 save%. Not good, not bad, just plain rice.
  • What time is it? *crowd in unison* “Time to check on the special teams!” How did they do? *crowd* “Actually, pretty good this time!”
    • The PP went 1/1 on the night. I find it amazing that the Predators only did something worthy of a penalty once in 60 minutes but that’s another story.
    • The PK went 0/3 on the night. The Oilers have only allowed one power play goal in their last seven games.
  • I thought Pontus Aberg had a nice game on the third line as he was probably the most noticeable bottom six forward. Aberg has some speed to his game, and it’s appreciated.
  • Would you have guessed that Iiro Pakarinen had six shots on net tonight? That was tied for the team lead with Lucic despite only getting 10:24 worth of ice.
  • I’m a big JJ Khaira guy.
  • Big shout out to Ethan Bear for making it through his NHL debut playing against one of the best teams in the league. That’s a tall order for a guy playing his first game and even though there were definitely some hiccups (-3 on the night), this is still a massive accomplishment to be proud of. Congrats.
McDavid out two-to-three weeks with quad injury


  • How many games in a row have the Oilers lost against the Predators? 12. Happy? Oh, and I should also mention that this win made David Poile the most winningest General Manager in history. Not only did the Oilers lose, they’re now the answer to a trivia question.
  • Scott Hartnell got the Predators on the board after the Oilers blew a chance to get the puck out of their own zone and ended up turning it over. After the steal, the Predators moved the puck around for a tic-tac-goal that got them a goal and back into the game.
  • Viktor Arvidsson tied the game up at two goals apiece with only 9.6 seconds left in the second period, completing the comeback on a completely avoidable goal. Why do the Oilers love early/late goals as much as they do? Can anyone explain it? Arvidsson added a second goal in the third period after Zack Kassian got caught on another turnover in the neutral zone that the Predators were able to walk down the ice for a goal.
  • Auston Watson scored the Predators fourth goal of the night and was the final nail in the coffin for an Edmonton team that started off well but then let the wheels falls off.
  • The Oilers were a turnover machine for the last half and it ended up costing them the hockey game. The NHL site had them listed at 22 on the night but I kinda think that’s being generous.
  • We have now reached 28 straight games for Milan Lucic without a goal. As far as slumps go, this one could be one of the most ‘impressive’ in recent memory. At this point, Milan Lucic’s stick is where offence goes to die and I can only hope that some kind of sacrifice gets made or else he may never score again. To be fair, this was probably one of his best games in a while.
  • The Oilers got absolutely KILLED in the faceoff circle, winning only 34% of the draws.
  • When I saw it tonight’s game was against Nashville I could see #BeetCast 29 in my future. I knew it was coming, and here it is. Happy day. As always, you can join in the misery over on my Twitter.
GDB 50.0: BOA Part Three (8pm MT, SNW)


11:01 Edmonton Connor McDavid (29) ASST: Anton Slepyshev (5), Matt Benning (11) 0-1
19:07 Edmonton PPG – Leon Draisaitl (21) ASST: Connor McDavid (48), Ryan Strome (18) 0-2


16:28 Nashville Scott Hartnell (12) ASST: Nick Bonino (11), Calle Jarnkrok (18) 1-2
19:50 Nashville Viktor Arvidsson (23) ASST: Filip Forsberg (26) 2-2


14:52 Nashville Viktor Arvidsson (24) ASST: Filip Forsberg (27) 3-2
16:50 Nashville Austin Watson (9) ASST: Ryan Hartman (18), Colton Sissons (14) 4-2


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Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 03/01/2018 – 10:00 pm MST

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  • PleaseWinOilers

    Was there any doubt they’d blow it?

    The Oilers have a defenseman that needs to go back to the AHL right now. For those thinking I’m talking about Bear, you’re wrong.

    I’m talking about ALL of them.

        • Glencontrolurstik

          Bet on THEM now, to go all the way…
          They got a taste of it last year.
          The Preds top two scorers are defensemen & everyone in their top 6 + has at least 30 points.
          They have a great goalie in Renne & a smart GM & management.
          This is one expansion team the League got right. The Fans have embraced the NHL, as they should.
          If the Peg & them meet (I hope so), that’ll be the series of the playoffs, bar none.

    • toprightcorner

      Nurse has been fantastic this year. Larson has played really well since returning from his family tragedy and had been decent, not as good as last year. Klefbom has struggled, I believe he is injured because he just doesn’t seem to be moving that well or skating as well as last year. Not a serious injury, but the one that nags you most of the season that drops your ability by 15%. With Sekeras injury, there was no hope he would get anywhere close to the level he has played the last 2 years and that just takes time. I think he is finally up to speed, but he can’t turn as well and he is a half second late getting to his spot because he has no explosiveness. Benning has taken a big step back and only has a good night every 3-4 games. Russel has been great and all you haters can yell, but he has been a blocking beast, leads the league in blocks, highest scoring dman on the team, heart and soul every game. He does give up the puck at the wrong tie that ends up in the back of the net, but he probably saves mre goals by blocks or sweeping it out of the crease.

      The defence needs to improve, but not a bunch. Add in a #1 or #2 RD with offensive skills and PP QB skills. If not, add that RD and trade a LD in a package for a LD stud. Some could be had at lower prices this year. Faulk, Barrie, Trouba (RFA) and Dumba (RFA) could all be available for cap reasons or not feel as needed or willing to trade from strength to fill other holes. Carlson would be a fantastic addition, yet expensive. $8 mill over 6 years would be a huge boost to the defense.

      Nurse – Carlson
      Sekera – Larson
      Russel – Benning

      This takes into consideration of trading Klefbom for a scoring winger.

      • crobar

        As if trouba or dumba are gonna be available??? Get lost if you are gonna throw out fantasy ideas. Wouldnt it be nice if you could get that date with Molly ringwald??

    • OilersFan999

      So because of one bad game an player is not good enough for the NHL by that logic most dman in the NHL are good enough to play just look at the goals he definitely was not the main reason they got scored on it was other players turning over the puck

      • Glencontrolurstik

        in this organization, the GM is told what to do… He is and always will be a “puppet.”
        The coach, not so much, this is all on him. Just look at the line-ups?

    • toprightcorner

      I am sure the coaching staff tells the players to leave a man wide open in the crease or to cough the puck up at the red line. You cam blame coaching all you want for special teams…..except for tonight when they were 100% perfect.

      I shake my head at the coach haters for the retarded mistakes the players make on the ice. At least blame them for things they are responsible for and not what the players are responsible for.

        • toprightcorner

          They didn’t make those same mistakes last year when the coach got them to play the system, the players not playing consistent or not doing the things they learned last year is not all blame to the coach.

          McDavid, Draisaitl, Nuge, Nurse and Russel are the only players on the team playing at the same level or better than last year. The other 15 players from last years team have taken a huge step backwards and the coach doesn’t teach them to play worse.

          • Odanada

            When a team just can’t get it done, change is needed. Whether you like TM or not, the results speak for themselves and something has to give. Last year is gone and done.
            I get it. Coaching and management changes did nothing in the DOD, so everyone is hesitant to get back aboard that cycle of futility. OK. But then what?
            It is my opinion that they need a real hockey man at the top, not a forensic accountant. It is also my opinion that stocking management with 80s Oilers is a recipe for abject failure. And lastly, though I idolize Wayne Gretzky as a player and as a person, his presence in management is a hindrance. No one will challenge or disagree with the greatest player ever and his track record as a coach/manager speaks for itself.
            Yes we need a new coach. Probably a new GM too. But until you get someone in at the top who can sweep out the 80s and instil a smarter, more accountable culture – think of what Shanahan has done in Toronto – then the absolute gift that is McDavid will be wasted.
            You may disagree with what I think, but there’s no denying that Connor McDavid is in the same boat as Jack Eichel in Buffalo – a supreme talent on a sad sack team – and that alone should be enough to make everyone shudder and demand better.

          • Glencontrolurstik

            The mistakes are on the coach. The players are not played to their strengths. They are aways asked to play out of their comfort zone. That is why the mistakes.
            By Gum, let Looch hit again. He is not and never will be a first line winger.
            Pully should turn into a first line winger & not sheltered on the checking line.
            I could go on and on… But the players aren’t being used properly.

      • TDSM31

        You sure as hell can blame the coach for putting a rookie dman on the ice with 10 seconds left in the period when you’re up a goal. Just a terrible decision.

          • Marlees

            But I don’t blame Bear for missing on that pinch which led to the Preds goal. He’s not used to the speed and was struggling with gap control most of the game. In junior he probably beats the other player to the puck there. As a coach you never want to get scored on during the last minute of a period and go into the room on a down note…especially a goal that costs you the lead. 100% on MacLellan there, IMHO.

          • Big Nuggets

            when the whole team is underachieving who else is to blame? sometimes maybe it is the players bad on ice decisions but this has been happening all season. The players aren’t folowing the coaches orders but we can’t change the whole roster. And some action needs to be taken, what do you suggest?

        • OilersBro

          I’m actually 100% okay with the decision to put Bear out there. The season’s done, might as well get him experience in different situations with lots of ice time – even if it means we lose a few games because of it.

          • Glencontrolurstik

            Yeah, that’s great. Put a raw rookie out there against one of the leagues biggest power-teams and expect him to do well & boost his confidence.
            That’s almost like taking an 18 year old that wants to be a firefighter and throwing him into a burning building, laughing and saying, “So, how does it feel to be a firefighter?” Doesn’t do much for confidence, does it?
            But I can see the mindset of upper management as egotistical as it is. We’ll show him what it’s like to be a League up… It’s a man’s league? Why else would they put him out against, one of the best, fastest most intimidating teams in the league? Why not wait for the Rangers or Canucks? It’s weird? But I don’t think it’s the right experience needed for raw rookies. But, it seems the Oilers do that with all of them.
            Considering their record with development, changing that might be a great place to start?

  • GK1980

    Klefbom is having a terrible season. Suppose he can bounce back next year? If not I would say he is gone at the trade deadline or sooner next season. He looks lost.

    • toprightcorner

      With the emergence of Nurse, if they can sign Nurse on a similar deal they got Klefbom for, then they will probably try to trade Klefbom for a RD with PP success. I also think he is injured, maybe his ankle is bothering him again. They would prefer to trade Sekera but the NMC makes it tougher. After 2019 season, Sekera and Sekera have to submit a list of 15 teams they can be traded to.

  • toprightcorner

    How do you say Talbot was just average tonight??? He was hung out to dry on every goal against. Could he have made a couple miraculous saves…..sure…..did he realistically have any shot at stopping any of those goals……..nope. Who cares what his save % is if every shot is from 6 feet out from a wide open player when rating his game??

    • Leo Tard

      Rinne stopped many from close in, from players wide open, and his save percentage on the yearis .927. Yes Talbot should have had more saves. Face it the Oilers are not good at scoring or at stopping scoring.

  • Was @ Rogers and the crowd is in full Zombie mode with ripe apathy in the air.

    44 mite show up in 19/20 looking for another contract
    83 is undersized and over matched
    91 is horrible to watch
    Fire Chairelli
    In game entertainment is top notch!

    • jultz=2cups!??

      “83 is undersized and overmatched.” Wtf did he do wrong last night besides get an assist, take 2 shots, throw 3 hits and end the night +1. What a terrible player hey oilersnation?!?!? You guys seriously need to learn hockey better.

      • jultz=2cups!??

        Oh and last year through 62 games Benny had 15 points. This season through 59 games he has 15 points. So he’s going to surpass last years points total, yet oilersnation thinks he was great last year and is garbage this year?? Wtf?? I’ll admit I wish he took a leap forward like Darnell has this year but the whole team has crapped the bed. Can’t believe I’m the only Matt benning fan on oilersnation. Lolol

        • Leichs

          Haha dude.. Have you watched any games this year at all? Benning sucks. What does he do well? He throws a big hit once every 5-10 games. Hes not a good skater or puck mover, he has a good shot but doesn’t have the skills to use it properly. He cant break up cycles and constantly is chasing the puck and getting hemmed in the D zone. Him and Drake are basically the same little useless player.

          • OilersBro

            He’s overplaying the puck in his own zone. It is apparent that he needed more AHL time to develop but hey that’s not the Edmonton way. Let’s rush young defencemen into second pairing minutes and hope they succeed.

  • Snoop Scottie Dogg

    I love Looch BUT, how can a guy not pick up the occasional secondary assist playing with God? He should leave his stick and gloves on the bench and take out his (and mine) frustrations out on the opposing team. KILL SOMEBODY ALREADY!!!!!

  • Kurri90

    Åberg was playing quite well. But he played mostly with Draisaitl and Cammalleri which I consider as 2nd line? Or was that 3rd and then Puljujärvi-Strome-Kassian 2nd line? But of course I guess those lines played quite same minutes so maybe 2A and 2B…. or 3A and 3B.

    • Glencontrolurstik

      Pulli and Lucic should be switched.
      Lucic/Strome & Kassian should play together.
      We have to start playing developing players where we think they should end up.
      The way it’s going they might as well play Talbot on LW with McDavid, maybe that’ll work?
      Pulli is expected to be a 1st or 2nd line winger. Let him prove himself & develop.
      This guy should be closer to Laine in his skillset & development? That’s is certainly how he showed in Junior.
      Why hasn’t that happened? Or any effort put into development & training?
      Can’t just play him all over the place & hope he fits in?

  • RJ

    I didn’t mind the game. I expect them to lose. I just want to see some decent performances.

    I think Bear was the best-puckmoving defenceman out there, which was good and bad. Good that he’s got a solid skill where the team lacks. Bad that an AHL call-up was better at passing than the regular defencemen.

  • Dr. Merkwurdigliebe

    McDavid and Draisaitl are so good. Almost too good because Chia gambled that he could cut corners with the rest of the lineup in the hopes that our two stars would lift up the rest of the team. With these two guys in our lineup, all is not lost, but we need to get Chia out of there and let someone else figure out how to build around those two guys. When Chia traded Hall he said it was a “tough market.” When Chia trades Maroon he said it was a “tough market.” He’s not shrewd enough. He has to go.

  • Dolby

    Nice to see Bear get some ice time, -3 hurts a bit, does the kid have an NHL skating stride? From what I saw tonight, I am not sure and hope this is being addressed

  • Kneedroptalbot

    Nashville is one of the best teams in the NHL, Edmonton is one of the worst. When Nashville need a goal they turned it up a notch. The score flattered Edmonton.

  • RJ

    Anyone remember John Scott at the All-Star game? That’s what Lucic reminded me of tonight.

    Connor seemed to spend all his shifts trying to set up Lucic.

    I get it. He’s in the worst slump of his career. His teammates are trying to support him.

    When he’s physical, when he’s engaged, Lucic can still have an impact even if he’s not putting up points. It was his best game in a while.

    But maybe if Connor is trying to just focus on scoring the Oilers go up 3-0. There were a few possessions that died because they kept trying to get Lucic a great shot.

    • jultz=2cups!??

      So you would rather Mcdavid never pass to Lucic again? Lol great teammate you would be. You see Connor and the oilers players/coaches have way more class than oilersnation ever will. They are doing everything they can to get Milan out of this mind numbing slump he’s in while you guys just pile on. Classic fairweather oilersnation

    • GK1980

      That’s fine, I love spending $400 on tickets to try and watch McDavid babysit Lucic. Why try to win games, let’s just watch McLellan try and get Lucic out of his slump. Brutal.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Against a great team we possibly could have beat, if that crap wasn’t going on?
        I agree with you, just move Looch down to the 3rd line & let him play his game with Kassian if you want to make him more effective. Heck, Looch can plod down the wing & stand beside the net, while Kassian gains the zone.
        That’s Lucic hockey, that’s why we hired him. Full-Stop.

    • n(Ice)

      It’s a real problem. Not just Connor but the team as a whole is being sacrificed to “get one player going”. All because Chia gave Lucic that ridiculous contract. Since you can’t get rid of him, put him on the 3rd line and tell him to hit everything in sight (excepting his own teammates)

      • Glencontrolurstik

        He’s much more effective that way.
        Beginning of the season he found himself on the 2nd & 3rd line.
        Out-pacing last seasons points. He’s gotta be allowed to hit & play rough.

  • OilersBro

    Let’s talk positives since being an Oilers fan is brutal right now:
    -Strome is looking more and more like he wants to earn that qualifying offer of $3MM. If he continues at this pace I got him pegged for 45 points next year
    -JJ wins like 80% of his puck battles. The size and speed is a deadly combo and his hands are looking smooth
    -Goaless streak for Lucic continues but he looked exponentially better in this game than any of the previous 26 games. Some massive hit, a couple of scoring chances (albeit they were from McDaddy) and he wasn’t blindly throwing passes anymore.
    -Pak is shaping up to be one of our best penalty killers – filling the Pouliot void for 5x less money

    Negatives: I’m still talking about moral victories in March.

    • Battman

      I agree. Strome has looked good the last couple games and I like what I’m seeing. If he can keep this level consistently then playing rnh on the wing becomes a lot easier

      Also like what I’ve seen from Aberg so far. Looks like he has speed and some skill.
      It seems to me that last night once the oilers lost the lead TM blendered his lineup to get McDavid and Draisaitl together to get a quick goal with the sad reality in that decision being that the next line got overwhelmed quickly. At that point, score being 4-2, I was think TM should have called a timeout, calmed everyone down, and told them to think about the situation the were in, and go out and push.

      Really like what I saw from Talbot last night as well. Sure his sv% wasn’t great but in terms of seeing things and rebound control he looked good.

      Wonder if Lucic maybe has a hand injury or something? His puck control just doesn’t seem like it’s completely there

    • Hemmercules

      I decided to look into this since MCL is probably on the hot seat a bit. Bylsma, Ruff, Tippet, Sutter and Hartly are floating around still but I’m not sure I would go for any of them. Bylsma had an ugly exit from Buffalo, Ruff has really bounced around, no idea what the others are up to? Time for a changing of the guard I think and get away from the old guys, go for someone younger like Keefe.

      • Glencontrolurstik

        I am a huge Ted Nolan fan. He has had so much adversity as well that all the crap Oiler Fans would throw at him would roll right off. Besides he has always taken a mediocre team to success in a short time in most every League. The players love him.
        Best of all he was known as a “GM Killer”.

    • Bag of pucks

      Without NHL experience there’s Dominic Discharge (qmjhl), Ted Donato (Harvard) or Dave Quinn (Boston U). For experienced I’ve always like Ted Nolan if you can pry him away from Poland

      • Glencontrolurstik

        Bob Hartley would also be good?
        He has got the IIHF Latvian team to 12 – 2.
        Latvia for gods sake. If he can do it with Latvia, and the only positive blip in the Flames the last 10 years.
        Imagine what he could do with this Oiler team. Nolan or Hartley… definitely not Crawford, definitely. He’s busy in Ottawa anyway. But definitely…

  • Jukkila

    Is it just me, or was the most pathetic and disheartening part of last night the fact that with 2:07 left and a faceoff in the offensive zone, McClellan didn’t even call a time-out and try to draw up a play. I was at the game, and it was almost like, at least humour me for a second here. Show that perhaps you care and aren’t rushing home to watch reruns of Jersey Shore. I’ve been to 2 games this year – this loss and massive preseason shallacking that Hurricanes put on the Oilers. In both games, there were clear displays of apathy from players and coaching staff. It’s really just pathetic that they can have so little pride and really concerning about the organization’s culture.

    • Glencontrolurstik

      They are a decent team that is poorly coached.
      They have the pieces but the puzzle is put together wrong.
      They could have had that game with the pieces available to them, at least made a game of it anyway?
      Somehow the coaching staff has run this team like a training camp, all season. At our expense. FIRE HIM…… & all his croonies…
      God I’m pissed…

  • ed from edmonton

    This game really highlighted how the Oil D has regressed this year. A 1st pairing of Nurse and Benning will not win you many games in the NHL, even with Nurse having an impressive year. Russel is Russel with his shortcomings and strengths that have been long discussed. But a perpetually (this year) struggling Klef, a one legged Sekera and a 1st gamer. The Oil hung in there better than what might be expected. Bear showed some good things, his puck handling and passing were NHL level, but made one brutal mistake and was hung out to dry on a couple of other goals by Sekera.