Hockey is back. Sure, it’s the preseason, but it’s back nonetheless. Tonight’s opponents, the Flames, are mostly over in China playing the Bruins and dressing up for a great wall visit.

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So the Oilers have dressed a bit of a bare-bones squad for this one.


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That said, let us review all the action.

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Period One:

-Barely enough time for the air to escape from my cold one before the Oilers fall back and Koskinen looks behind him, down 1-0.

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-Polei and Sabourin fight with Sabourin landing five or six good punches early.

-a nice zone entry and passing by the Oilers with Bouchard trailing in and he picks a corner over Rittich’s shoulder, 1-1.

-Polei gets drilled behind the net and Brad Malone steps up for his teammate. You gotta like that in the pre-season.

-Yamamoto gets smoked by Spencer Foo at the blueline but he pops up and takes a nice feed by Kevin Gravel to go in on a short-handed break, 2-1 Oilers.

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Koskinen looks a little all over the place to start. The first goal was a weird one but he was chasing the puck and not following it overly well. Polei has a fight, a big hit and a goal post to start this one off solidly.

Period Two:

-Having flashbacks to last year with these early period goals tonight as Dube puts one through the side of Koskinen from an angle he’ll want back.

-Dube is a bubble player on the Flames but tonight he looks like a sure-fire NHLer. He splits the D and into the net, 3-2 Flames.

-Koskinen’s adjustment to the NHL ice surface is clearly not there yet tonight. He is fighting the puck, huge rebounds and positional issues.

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-At 13:09 the Oilers get a PP and there is some flashes of some offence from both PPs.

-The Battle of Alberta is alive and well here with the third and fourth fights of the night.

-Logan Shaw instigated the aforementioned fourth fight and on that subsequent PP the Oilers are all over the Flames. The puck comes to Bear at the point and he makes no mistake tying it up, 3-3


The goals are going to need to keep coming as Koskinen doesn’t look comfortable out there. Benson with two points on the night so far. Yamamoto gets pushed around out there but won’t stop popping up and creating offence.

Period Three:

-Shane Starrett comes out for the third. Koskinen’s first game is in the books and it can only go up from here.

-Buddy Robinson takes a penalty early for the Flames. I don’t have much to say about this except that his name is amazing.

-Oilers second round pick this year Ryan Mcleod makes an absolute beauty pass from behind the goal line to Yamamoto on the Flames blueline and Kailer skates in making no mistake, 4-3.

-Flames push back hard through the middle of the period but the Oilers have the bulk of the Grade A scoring chances.

-Starrett having a good period coming in cold.

-Goaltending and D went out the door in the last four minutes of this one as the goals just flowed in.

The Wrap

This game was a bit of a wash on account of the rosters put forth by both teams. That said some guys stood out to me for both teams both good and bad.

Kailer Yamamoto: To pretty much no ones surprise after seeing him last year to start the year, Yamamoto is a heck of a player and tonight was just furthering that storyline

Mikko Koskinen: I’m not going to pile on the guy here. He wasn’t good. Onto the next game for him.

Evan Polei: The big boy is a spirited one. His first period he was all over the place. More full games from him and we may have a player down the road.

Dillon Dube: The Flames aren’t giving a roster spot to this guy? Really? He has destroyed the Oil over this pre-season period. Three goals in this one.

Ryan Mcleod: His pass alone in the third period to set-up Yamamoto puts him on this no doubt.

The Oilers are undefeated to start the pre-season and now will look to have a little more NHLer heavy lineup going into Vancouver tomorrow night at 8:30pm MT.

  • TruthHurts98

    Koskinen was a mess, couldn’t track the puck and gave up plenty of awful rebounds that NHLers will bury. Maybe it was nerves but I’ve said from day one I hated the signing at the cap hit. 2 million less, sure take a chance. Ryan McLeod is going to have an NHL career. Good vision and fast. Still needs work but that line of Benson, Yamamoto and McLeod had some really bright spots tonight.

    • Nation Dan

      I will give him a pass in his first ever NHL game. Lots of changes there for a goalie used to international ice. But at that cap hit he needs to turn it around quick.

    • CMG30

      I’m not going to get too down on a guy for being rusty in the preseason. Having said that, 2 million is a lot of cash for a backup. I’ll hold my fire for preformance in the regular season

    • That's My Point

      Nice snipe from Bouchard, McLeod looks better than Kassian, Benson could make the team need to get rid of the dead weight on the Oilers and replace with some young fast talented players.

      • AlexTheOilersFanSince2006

        True, but he hasn’t played in the NHL since Montoya was an Islander. That’s a long time to not be playing on NHL-sized rinks. I thought he was actually okay for most of it. Yes he had a hard time tracking he puck, but it was bouncing everywhere and we can chalk it up to rust.

      • Redbird62

        The first 3 are facts. The fourth sentence is not a fact, its a derogatory insult. Can’t even express it that he had a poor game, which would have been a more fair statement. I agree it is not a good start for the man, but I am not going to give up on him after one game. You take a sample size of one, and extrapolate that to the conclusion that he will probably fail the rest of the time. You’ll feel proud of yourself if he does fail that you knew it all along, but if he happens to actually succeed, you win because the Oilers will succeed. Your cynical attitude has you covered.

        • Spydyr

          If you are not cynical as an Oiler fan after decades of failure you are deceiving yourself. It would be a thing of beauty if the Oilers actually had a well managed franchise and they were not the joke of the NHL. The Katz era has been a farce.

          • Redbird62

            No question the Oilers have been mostly terrible for the past 25 years, with only a few bright spots along the way. And the organization is to blame for that with their many poor decisions. Signing Koskinen may be another bad signing, and it is reasonable to argue that it was a big risk on Chiarelli’s part and you have made it clear since he was signed that you did not like the signing. But HaHa told you so based on one pre-season game is very premature. I have my doubts about him as well. Maybe he will live down to your expectations, but give him a few games before writing him off.

          • Redbird62

            “Looks like that is still not happening this season” is language that leans heavily towards your mind was largely made up as opposed to saying something like “that game did not instill any confidence”. If your sentiment was intended to be more towards the latter, then I would agree with you.

  • Dallas Eakins Hair

    Kositsin (cause it’s in ) didnt exactly fare well, if this is what the oilers ponied up big cash for…hoo boy Chia will be taking major heat for it. Now some have said this s the NHL, ues it is but it’s training camp the competition isnt exactly stellar, if Kositsin is having trouble with the training camp talent I would hate to see what happens with him facing NHL talent.

    Does Kositsin have to get use to the north american game, yes but the Oiler cant afford to have Talbot play tons and tons of games, the whole Kositsin signing was to be able to give Talbot a break with less games btwn the pipes and to have another good goaltender in case Talbot gets injured or needs a break.

    TM has a short leash on goalies, look at Broossoit, the kid barley played and when he didn go in he hadnt played in weeks if not a month and if he didnt do well TM wouldnt use him unless he needed to, so if Kositsin looks like he isnt doing well, expect to seem he barley used by TM.

    I will hope for better things from Kositsin, but tonight didn’t exactly inspire a lot of confidence in Chia’s signing of him

    • I think the extra development time has taught him to recover from those knocks. He could be a Martin St. Louis type player, using his speed and diminutive stature to find seams…he just has to be able to get back up and in the play quickly after getting blasted, which he did in this game. Very promising.

      • kelvjn

        Marty St. Louis also has a thigh comparable to a tree stump. When you’re small you need to be really strong to have success in the NHL and that is on him to put in the work and train.

        The other problem with being small and fearless is injury. All it takes is to catch a rut during one of these fall, or get head lineup to someone’s shoulder or elbow …

  • oil.99.97.11

    For the love of god, can we please find a way this season to NOT be down 1-0 on a goal 30 seconds in on the first frickn shot on net!! How many times did this happen when we took to the ice last year?!?! Stop it.

    Bouchard is going to be a stud. Ryan Mcleod is going to be player. Yamo might be for real. Benson may well be better than some higher-ups on the depth chart.

  • Himynameistaylor

    TRASH IT! 6
    CHEERS 3
    I have more faith in Koskinen than Talbot and I haven’t even seen him play yet, thats how good Talbot is.

    Just leaving this well aged quote here….

  • The Future Never Comes

    I was at the game again, a few side notes although we all are aware its preseason: Aberg looked very pedestrian, he may want to pick it up if he doesnt want to get waived. Chiasson looked like he could possibly be a good 4th line energy player. Mikko looked very sketchy between the pipes, hopefully that was the first game jitters or we need to play Montana instead…

  • Bills Bills

    My take:
    Kailer was killing it
    Bouchard Evaned it up
    Polei wasn’t pulling any punches
    Gravel gave us some real traction
    Alex had his Chaisson
    Currie added a little spice to the night
    And Koskinen almost cost us again with a first shot first goal.
    Although it seemed like all Day we were on defence, all in all it was pun.

  • Hemmercules

    I heard Koskinen let in the first shot. Cant say I was really surprised. Only 1 game but it doesnt leave anyone feeling very confident in him right out of the gate. I hope Talbot its ready to play 70 games again.