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Photo Credit: Gary A. Vasquez-USA TODAY Sports

GDB 78.0: One Last Duck Hunt (8pm MT, SNW)

Welcome, citizens, to the second last Saturday GDB of the season as we get ourselves prepped for tonight’s matchup between the Edmonton Oilers and Anaheim Ducks.

Last week, the Anaheim Ducks were mathematically eliminated from the playoffs and that’s the kind of breaking news that we should have all been allowed to enjoy. Instead, the Oilers are on the verge of the same fate and it’s souring my appreciation of how quickly the Ducks have fallen off a cliff. We should be dancing on their graves right now but that moment of schadenfreude has been stolen from us, and I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to forgive Peter Chiarelli for it. Seriously, though, Anaheim has been every shade of annoying to Oilers fans for years and it’s just too bad to see them going through what they have this season. Too bad, indeed.

Looking at tonight’s game, the Oilers need to do whatever it takes to walk away with two points. Full stop. No excuses. Their chances of landing in that second wild card spot are about as slim as they can get without being mathematically eliminated and if the boys want to keep the dream alive (at least on paper) then they’re going to have to come out firing and keep it going for all 60 minutes. Adding to their opportunity is the fact that the Ducks played last night in Calgary (and lost), they’ve sucked all season long, they can’t score, and they have a hard time keeping the puck out of their own net which leads me to believe that our boys should, in theory, be able to get something done here.

In the three games played against Anaheim so far, the Oilers are sporting a 2-0-1 record and have outscored the Ducks by a 6-3 margin over the season series.

NUMBERS

OILERS DUCKS
RECORD 34-34-9 32-37-10
WIN/LOSS STREAK L1 L1
LAST 10 GAMES 4-4-2 5-4-1
GOALS FOR 223 186
GOALS AGAINST 256 246
POWER PLAY 21.5 17.3
PENALTY KILL 74.0 78.8
AVG. SHOTS/FOR 29.4 27.4
AVG. SHOTS/AGAINST 31.7 33.2
TEAM SAVE% .896 .907
CORSI FOR% 48.14 47.39
PDO 99.5 99.6
TEAM SHOOTING% 7.73 7.15
GOALS FOR% 46.18 45.45

Numbers courtesy of Natural Stat Trick (fancies at 5×5)

According to our friends at OddsShark, the total has gone UNDER in 6 of Edmonton’s last 9 games at home

LINEUPS…

Oilers

Draisaitl – McDavid – Kassian
Gambardella – RNH – Chiasson
Rieder – Cave – Gagner
Lucic – Brodziak – Currie

Klefbom – Larsson
Nurse – Russell
Sekera – Benning

Koskinen

I want to take a minute to recognize the ridiculous seasons that the three Cs are having for the Oilers this year. Having two guys with over 100 points and Nuge hitting 65 for the first time in his career is pure magic, and I think that the year those three have had is a strong silver lining in what was a very tough year to watch.

Ducks

Rakell – Shore – Silfverberg
Sprong – Henrique – Perry
Sherwood – Steel – Terry
Jones – Grant – Rowney

Lindholm – Manson
Fowler – Welinksi
Megna – Holzer

Gibson

The Ducks have had a hard time scoring all season and I hope that trend continues today. Only Jakob Silfverberg has more than 20 goals with Adam Henrique next up with 18. That said, they’ve also had some key guys miss a lot of games with injuries so the Oilers will have to be wary of the guys that have run into slumps for whatever reason.

WHAT THEY’RE SAYING…

From Pucks of a Feather:

Since that “Changing of the Guard” the Ducks have only had 3 top 10 picks in the NHL Entry Draft, only two of which were originally theirs. With those picks, the Ducks selected, in chronological order: Bobby RyanHampus Lindholm, and Nick Ritchie. Not a bad crop of players. The most underwhelming of the three being Nick Ritchie. He has been impressive this season, and while he may not be an elite player, he is an NHL player and one who can fill many roles.

The other 2 are highly praised players, Bobby Ryan scoring 30 goals in 4 straight seasons with the Ducks before being traded and Hampus Lindholm seen as the best defenseman on the Ducks and a cornerstone piece of the franchise as they move forward. Acquiring a player of that caliber is always exciting and the prospect of drafting in the top 10 this season is something to salivate over.

TONIGHT…

Photoshop: Tom Kostiuk

Game Day Prediction: Oilers keep their slim minuscule playoff hopes alive with a 5-3 win.

Obvious Game Day Prediction: Ryan Kesler will hack and slash Connor McDavid 13x without getting called for anything. We’ll complain about it but nothing will change.

Not-So-Obvious Game Day Prediction: Recognizing that the Bobby Nicks Burger is not selling as well as he expected, Bob Nicholson decides to pivot to tacos. Coming just in time for next season, Bobby Nicks will be releasing the $49 tortilla tacos. There is no meat, toppings, guac, or sauces and you get to use your imagination to fill the shells with whatever you want.

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Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 3/30/2019 – 9:30 am MT

  • West

    OGDP: The Oilers get their mandatory one (and only one) powerplay early in the first period. They score and you know that is the last time they will get a powerplay in this game. PS What is the record for fewest powerplays in a 6 game stretch. The Oilers have received one powerplay in each of the last 6 games. Can they get another record this year?

  • Dark Knight Returns

    Call me a pessimist, but to me the 3 C’s having career years and their team being out of the playoffs is the contrary of a silver lining.
    It’s sad to no end that the league misses out on watching them during the best hockey of the year (playoffs) and that the 3 individuals have to watch from home.

    All I hope for them is success. Elsewhere. Here, it won’t happen.

    #FreeMcDavid

  • SRELIOFAN

    Call me a terrible fan, but I hope the Oilers get mathematically eliminated ASAP. This talk of them still having a chance is ridiculous.

    That said, there are still things to cheer for. Let’s get loud at Rogers tonight and cheer on Draisaitl to win the Rocket Richard, McDavid to catch Kutcherov, and Reider to get that elusive first goal!

  • jesse says yep

    why the need to constantly quantify the Oilers chances? I get it, almost everybody else gets it, they are slim. But so what? If you cant enjoy the drive and entertain that the impossible wont happen why bother watching sports at all? How many years have fans on here been complaining about not having meaningful games after January. Here we are with 5 games left and still in the picture and far too many fans have been droning on about not having a chance sonce the 60 game mark. Its spring, our team is winning and until the math says so there is still a chance. Regardless of how small. Let go of the apathy and cynicism and get behond the boys!

    • Gary

      You should expect more sir, missing the playoffs for a 12th time in 13 years is NOT acceptable. Watching players on loser teams celebrate by jumping at the glass wildly excited when they score a goal is sad.

    • cityofchampions

      ummm…well looking at the situation objectively, since about January, our chances of making the playoffs is very slim. That’s not apathy and cynicism, that is fact. We needed a run of about 8-1-1 at some point (like what Colorado and St. Louis went on), and it never happened. We have played well enough to mathematically stay in the race, but we have never been closer than 5 points out, more usually 7. I love the Oilers, but they are not making the playoffs.

      • jesse says yep

        Most of what you said is true except the two lines line. Seems to me that many of the writers/posters here seem to revel in the ineptitude so that they can rail on it instead of talking hockey. But all of the management choices and OBC crap aside. Once the team is assembled it just seems to me the only thing left to do is support them until the final buzzer. Its not like anyone who can influence the team is reading this site anyway.

  • Oiler Al

    Two 100 point scorers on board and you are playing amid the bottom feeders.Worse yet your G/A is second worst in the west,next to the Hawks,although the Hawks scored 30 more goals this year! You have to question The Defense,goal tending and Trent Yawney???

    “the end is near and Pete did it his way”

  • Gravis82

    There is no silver lining in anything about this season. Nothing has changed, you help drive the narrative, dont let up. Our three centers are having seasons that would win us the cup, if our GM did almost next to nothing. Draft chabot, doubois and debrincat. Keep hall and eberle. Can you imagine? How many extra goals would that be this year? 120?

  • J.P Michaels

    Who ever on the Ducks Team hasn’t scored in 10, 20 or however many games will get on the board tonight, that’s the way it usually goes. Ducks are in a bad mood after last nights visit to YYC. So they’ll do everything to eliminate the Oilers post season hopes tonight and succeed. That’s the way it has been all season.

  • Oilerz4life

    Monster glove hole.

    ^^^see pic^^^

    I hope Koskandin doesn’t hear tink, tink, tink all night high glove side that’s all I can say. If the new gm could dump Kosky and his contract for a real goalie would be nice, but the just me IMHO.

        • Dark Knight Returns

          Duh. Not too smart hey?
          No what I’m saying is that we hear ad nauseam how Mikko has a weak glove hand from you and from the other whiner that comes to say how is the goalie coach fault….

          As for McDavid…. yeah…. he doesn’t retire an Oiler, and the sooner he moves on to a half decent team, the better off the league and is fans will be.

          • Oilerz4life

            I’m not saying that smart guy, I’m saying it would be nice to have a goalie that gives them a chance to win every night. He’s way out of position all the time, it’s brutal. My comment wasn’t directed at the peanut gallery anyway (you), so take #freemcdavid and take a hike, no true Oiler fan would ever agree with that. You’re just a troll anyway, why don’t you creep on back to Flamesnation. #freekoskinen

          • Oilerz4life

            and I have never said one comment about Schwartz, but if you have a love affair with the goalie coach you go right ahead.

            Kosko is a euro and it’s obvious the way he is WAY to far out of the net. The new gm needs to trade kosko and his contract for a real NHL goalie as soon as he hits the ground running. The Oilers lose so many games because the goalie gave up the ghost. Build from the net out, that should be painfully obvious, especially from a smart guy like you.

  • Ted

    Well we went 8-7 this month with one game to go! Dallas only needs two points to clinch and Colorado needs five points! It felt like we played better this month and deserved a better look into the last spot. BUT. … No Face Punch Kesler? Let’s show this Mickey Mouse club that we are not Goofying around! … GDP – Lucic wakes up again and gives Hewy Dewy and Lewy a Face Punch instead!

  • Heschultzhescores

    We have both ends of the spectrum. Multiple guys with career high years and several with career low years. I’m not sure how that happens. Is it an anomaly or a sign of something else? With 5 guys having career years, its shocking we are not in the playoffs. Talbot did lose us a ton of games. Looch has not contributed nearly enough. Rieder, well that goes without saying…unless your name is Bobby Nick’s. This has been a very strange year, not sure what to expect next year. I’m still hopeful for the future with all those guys having career years. I still believe the ceiling is much higher for all our young guys. The Next decade is the turning point. The 20’s will roar again!

    • Gravis82

      I seem to think that Taylor hall has contributed 2x the points as Lucic in less than 40 games. To say he has not contributed nearly enough is an understatement by a factor of ~8x. For his salary, we needed hall production in return when we traded Hall. Because, we had hall production with hall. Instead, we downgraded from 1st liner to borderline 4th liner.

      And no it was not Hall for Larson. It was hall for any reasonably cheap somewhat ok D man so we could use that money to sign Lucic instead. Because of this, they accepted soooo much less. Faulty logic as per usual.

  • Dallas Eakins Hair

    If the Oilers want to win the game they have to keep their foot on the gas for all three periods they can not make the mistake the coaching staff did the last game where the foot came off the pedal in the their period and they decided to play the trap and defend the lead at the start of the third and sat back, it just opened up the stars to go full at them because they knew the Oilers were in defend only mode until the stars scored then the Oilers had no choice but to throw everything at them, that was a bad decision on the coaching staff’s part it allowed the stars back in the game. The ducks would love nothing better than to stick it to the Oilers, so if the Oilers want to have any chance of winning this they have to keep their foot on the gas and keep playing full bore till the final buzzer