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GDB 23.0 Wrap Up: Oilers come out flat and deserve the 5-2 loss in LA

Surely the Kings must be one of the league’s best teams! *checks notes* Oh. I see. Final Score: 5-2 Kings

This morning, I wrote that the Oilers had to approach tonight’s game against the Kings as a must-win situation. Not only have the Kings sucked horribly through the first two months of the NHL season, but they also played (and lost) last night against the Vancouver Canucks. From where I blog, going up against a horrible team on the second half of a back-to-back set should mean that two points in the bank and anything less than that would be unacceptable. Am I right? Of course I am. What I’m really trying to say is that the Oilers have gotten their asses kicked so many times over the years by the Kings and others that I don’t think it’s uncalled for to want to be on the other end of the beatdown for once. Frankly, the boys couldn’t have been better set up to succeed and close this road trip out with a win. Unfortunately, the Oilers never seem interested in our plots for revenge.

Since the Oilers had plenty of time to rest since Friday’s matinee against the Ducks, I was hoping to see them bursting with energy to make sure they took advantage of a tired Kings team. What actually happened was the Kings were the ones with jump and they got off to a strong start complete all kinds of offensive chances. Had it not been for a few big saves, the Oilers would have easily found themselves down by a few goals before the game was even 10 minutes old. Unfortunately, things didn’t get much better from there. While they were able to get themselves an early second-period lead, the Oilers couldn’t hold it for more than a couple of minutes. Over this recent slump, the boys have had a really bad habit of playing down to their competition and gapping on large chunks of their games, and they got a healthy dose of both of those problems tonight.

To put it lightly, this was a winnable game that the Oilers had to have but they came out flat and completely dropped the ball. Frankly, to lose like that to the worst team in the league is nothing short of embarrassing and every single person associated with the organization had better take a look in the mirror because that was ugly.

The wrap.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

  • Alex Chiasson got the Oilers on the board, cancelling out what was a wonderful start by the LA Kings. After falling behind early, the Oilers looked like they might be starting to get themselves into trouble but it was Chiasson’s goal (that Connor banked in off him) that knotted things up and started to turn the tides in their favour. Chiasson followed up with a second goal early in the second period after parking himself in front of the net and knocking home a loose puck.
  • Connor McDavid was one of the few Oilers to be moving his feet tonight and he extended his point streak to six games. The way he can rush the puck through the neutral zone with speed is incredible and I don’t know how anyone could be expected to defend him.
  • Ryan Nugent-Hopkins extended his point streak to four games with an assist on Alex Chiasson’s second goal of the night. That’s two goals and two assists for Nuge over his last four games as he looks to establish himself as the second line centre. The problem with that plan is, of course, the lack of qualified wingers to play beside him.
  • Oilers went 1/3 on the power play tonight and even thought it would have been nice to see them get more than one, it is encouraging to see them convert tonight.
  • Good night for Oscar Klefbom as he finished the night with a team-high 26:10, eight shots, five blocks, and two assists.
  • Jesse Puljujarvi made his first appearance of the Hitchcock era and looked alright, though he won’t be happy about the holding penalty he took. In his first game back from Bakersfield, the big Finn played 7:43 with two PIMs and a blocked shot.
  • Chris Wideman only played 13:31 tonight but you could certainly notice his offensive instincts and ability to move the puck up ice. While the defensive side of his game certainly looks like it could use some work, there’s no doubt that his passing Kung Fu is strong, and that’s something that has been sorely lacking on the Oilers backend.

THE FACE PALMERS

  • Absolutely brutal start for the Oilers tonight. For being supposedly rested, they sure got dummied by a terrible Kings team that played last night. Not a good look, boys.
  • Dustin Brown came into this game without a goal in his last eight games and, as per tradition, the Oilers wanted to help the guy out. Brown was the beneficiary of a perfectly executed 2-on-1 with Anze Kopitar and it seemed like only a matter of time before the Kings would finally get on the board. Not to be outdone by Chiasson, Dustin Brown got his second goal of the game after found his way into the slot completely alone and available to one-time a snapshot past Talbot. Adding salt to the wound was the fact that Brown picked up the hat trick into the empty net.
  • Anze Kopitar gave the Kings their first lead of the game early in the third period after he was able to break in alone and beat Talbot with a quick snapshot to the blocker side.
  • Even though they were already down by two goals, the Oilers decided to pull the net and allow a second empty-netter. Matt Luff put the Kings up by three when it was completely unnecessary.
  • The Oilers allowed Grade-A chances like it was their business and that’s a sad state of affairs considering the Kings are running a reputation of being a team that can’t score.
  • Cam Talbot got the start tonight and he really needed to have a good one because he’s been on a horrible stretch of late. Early on, he looked like he was going to give the Oilers the goaltending they needed to close out this thing out but he ended up getting outduelled by his counterpart yet again. That’s not to say that Talbot necessarily played poorly whatsoever, he finished the night with 27 saves and a .900 save%, but he couldn’t match what was happening the other end of the ice and that ended up costing the Oilers. That said, the team in front of him gave up far too many scoring chances and it’s hard to blame Talbot for this one.
  • Edmonton started off well on the PK tonight but they ended up on the hook for two goals against on five chances. As a whole, the Oilers spent far too much time in the box and couldn’t bail their team out when it happened. Bad combination.
  • How mad do you think Ty Rattie was when he found out that Hitchcock would be his coach again? Much like what happened in St. Louis, Rattie barely saw the ice as he finished with only 3:32 on the night.
  • Shout out to everyone that watched tonight’s game from the eastern time zone or further because waiting for 8:30 pm starts is the worst.
  • Oilers went 44% in the faceoff circle. Not ideal.
  • I know that the Grey Cup had nothing to do with this hockey game but I can’t help but feel upset that people in Calgary are happy.
  • Of course I have to eat beets because of the LA Kings. OF COURSE I DO! Join in the misery over on my Twitter account.

SCORING SUMMARY

1ST PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
07:56 Los Angeles Dustin Brown (4) ASST: Anze Kopitar (5), Derek Forbort (4) 0-1
13:19 Edmonton PPG – Alex Chiasson (9) ASST: Connor McDavid (20), Oscar Klefbom (9) 1-1

2ND PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
02:16 Edmonton Alex Chiasson (10) ASST: Oscar Klefbom (10), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (16) 2-1
04:13 Los Angeles PPG – Dustin Brown (5) ASST: Anze Kopitar (6) 2-2

3RD PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
04:27 Los Angeles Anze Kopitar (7) ASST: Derek Forbort (5), Nate Thompson (1) 2-3
19:07 Los Angeles EN – PPG – Dustin Brown (6) ASST: Jeff Carter (8), Drew Doughty (12) 2-4
19:33 Los Angeles EN – Matt Luff (4) 2-5

#GOODCONTENT

Talk to me, Twitter. Tweet at @OilersNation and @jsbmbaggedmilk for your chance to land in the Best of the Tweets.

BLACK FRIDAY

Coming up on Thursday night at midnight, our annual Black Friday collecting drops for a limited time only. We’ve got hats, a tee, hoodie, and toques and they’re pretty dope so you’ll definitely want to check it out. Every year, we sell out of all of these items so be sure to get to NationGear.ca as fast as you can if you want to score something to beautify your wardrobe.


Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 11/25/2018 – 11:45 pm MT



  • 50 Flex

    Seriously what did Rattie do to make Hitchcock hate him so much? I honestly feel bad for him. He doesn’t deserve this. From the very limited time I have watched him this season, he is a player who makes calm and good plays. He obviously can’t drive a line but he has an NHL shot and knows where to position himself with good players. His biggest mistake was getting injured. I don’t believe he was given a fair chance to establish himself when he came back. I think there is a player there. Wish him the best.

  • PleaseWinOilers

    This team is a friggin disaster. They did nothing well tonight. And their precious callup barely played and the only impact he made on the game was taking a penalty.

    Chiarelli and the rest of the Trailer Park boys need to be fired yesterday.

    • OilerForLife

      Hughes ???

      That was even worse than before, there seems really no way out of this. Ottawa ripped-off the Oilers. Puljujarvi is the same as before – didn’t even try to challenge the puck carrier when in a defensive position- another bust. After LA took the lead 3-2 I told my spouse that the game was over, and switched it. They have absolutely nothing in the push back department, and I’m watching 90 day finance again. I don’t know if there even an individual that can even fix this. Calgary is looking very good – this is too much to bare.

    • I think Jesse spent more time in the box than on the ice. Unbelievable. But maybe the silver lining is that he’s trying to play a more “North American” style of play…but just doesn’t get it yet? He thinks charging in with your stick up and grabbing guys is how you play “physical” hockey. Hitch better sort him out, but fast.

    • GK1980

      Calm down everyone let’s give Hitchcock the season to figure this team out AND THEN next year we can all hope for playoffs. Patience guys….patience…

      • Kneedroptalbot

        We had Patience….bought back Dallas Eakins for another season.
        brought back Peter Chiarelli for another season.
        How did that work out?………Patience

  • CMG30

    Hitchcock is a good coach, McLellan is/was a good coach. The problems are not behind the bench. The problems are upstairs.

    Chirelli has utterly failed to build a team that is competitive. Time to face the fact that this team is simply not good enough. The reason that Hitch was so hell-bent on bringing back JP is because he knows this too. Outside a small handful of players is a gaping hole where there should be a hockey team. Hich needs JP if he has any hope of trying to run 2 competent lines. I shudder to think where we would be if we weren’t gifted McDavid.

    Fire Chirelli and bring in somebody who can build a team. At this point we need to upgrade 3 forward lines, a top defensive paring and the guy in the net. Then we need to effect a radical culture change because losing seems to be how these players define themselves.

  • Slats

    What a poor performance. You have a team, last in the division on a back to back, playing their THIRD string goalie and you serve up that stinker!

    The D on this team is so bad – has anyone seen Nurse or a Russell actually make a proper break out pass this game? I’m serious watch the video. Every play they have their backs to the play and they have to make a no look back hand shovel pass along the boards to a stationary winger who gets pasted into the glass by a pinching dman….. EVERY TIME! If i was an Oiler winger i would be in their face saying “can you make an eFfing NHL play”! If not just ice it that way the forwards can just break out on their own. Brutal ….just brutal.

  • Hickster94

    I’ve only been an oilers fan/watching NHL hockey since 2003, and do not have a great amount of knowledge or recollection of games previous to that, but can anyone tell me if there has EVER been an instance where a referee has stopped the play for a penalty call, and then take it %*^KING BACK OR CHANGE THEIR %*^KING MINDS?!?!? A 5 on 3 poweplay, with the oilers down 3-2 at that point, would have made for a completely different outcome I think. Then the geniuses in the zebra stripes miss an obvious hack to McDavid’s neck, and follow that gem of a non call up with a bogus penalty against the Captain!!!! Nation, please help me understand this madness!!!! #takeitback ????

    • Becauseoilers

      and that is exactly at the point that I turned the game off. It is one thing that the Oilers lose enough of their games on their own, let alone the officiating beating them on many occasions. The officiating around McDavid is an absolute joke. if I were him, I would take the fine and let the press know what I think…..after every game! Maybe after a dozen or so fines, they will realize they have a problem. Between officiating and the lackluster oilers, I am officially done.

      • NickL89

        Ugh you’re right. And I can’t pile the blame on a Benning tonight since he wasn’t even playing. Nurse is good when he doesn’t have to think (dumping the puck, all alone on a breakaway, getting rough after the whistle, etc.) As soon as he gets under pressure and needs to think about who to pass to/where his teammates are, it’s too late! For someone who is supposed to have a “high hockey IQ” I just don’t see the evidence to back that up. So I guess he’ll be next on the list to get a NMC and an overpaying contract. This is beyond frustrating.