Hello Nation Citizens!
I hope everyone is doing well and surviving this horrible cold snap that we’ve gotten! If it makes you feel any better, this is what my dog and I look like every time we go for a walk. Thank goodness Edmonton has the best summer … it makes these winter months bearable!
When’s this cold snap ending?
– girl with the frozen eyelashes pic.twitter.com/5v1akLX0CH
— caroline szwed (@caroline_szwed) January 4, 2022
Now I know it was a slow week in Oil Country with only one game played against the Toronto Maple Leafs but there’s a lot to talk about when it comes to the Edmonton Oilers these days. The boys are on a five game losing streak (again) and it seems like we’re right back to where we started. There’s a lot of angry Oilers fans (rightfully so) that are blaming coaching, goaltending, depth, scoring, etc. and while I’ve expressed how I feel about what I think needs to happen in my last week’s power rankings, I want to focus on a few positive things this week.
With that being said, I do not think the Oilers are playing up to their talent and potential. It’s so disheartening to watch a team with the two best players in the world come out for over a month now and continue losing. But beyond that, it’s really tough to watch a team that doesn’t seem like they’re giving 100% of their heart and effort from top to bottom. I don’t like singling out one player – at this point in the schedule with these kinds of performances – it’s on the organization as a whole.
However, this week, I’m going to choose positivity. Here are 3 players that are worth mentioning from this past week:
3- Lamborghini Perlini
His season may not have gotten off to a quick start as a lambo would (slow clap for a dad joke) but Brendan Perlini did score a pretty important goal this week against the Toronto Maple Leafs.
He currently has only two goals and one assist on the season and is a player that the Oilers needed and wanted more bottom six point production from but let’s give him some credit this week.
In case you missed it, here is the tying goal:
Brendan Perlini zooms in and finishes off a great feed. 💨
— NHL (@NHL) January 6, 2022
Some Oilers fans were impressed with Perlini’s play:
Brendan Perlini and Colton Sceviour are playing some solid hockey tonight.
— Reliable Edmonton Oilers News (@oilersdailyy) January 6, 2022
While others are looking way into the future and hoping for the best!
Hot take: Brendan Perlini will turn around his NHL career and become an all star in 2024
— ZURK NATION (@crumdog_MILL) January 6, 2022
I know Perlini has yet to meet expectations but what are your thoughts on his game against the Leafs? Are we hopeful that he can eventually fill a role of someone in the bottom six who can produce points? Or in your opinion, does he still have work to do?
2- Ryan McLeod
Oh man, in case you didn’t hear, Ryan McLeod may have had the open net of the century in his game against the Leafs:
Sir the net is right there pic.twitter.com/OHpVl2mECH
— alberto (@twistedleafs) January 6, 2022
While a lot of the NHL community gave major props to Jack Campbell on the save, the other half said it wasn’t really a save when McLeod missed the net entirely. Hockey fans weighed in on this moment even further and said, “if this is what the lack of goal scoring looks like in Edmonton, then maybe Koskinen may have had a point” when he spoke to the media earlier this week.
Before we move on, what are your thoughts on the Tippett / Koskinen drama? Do you think Tippett should have called Koskinen out like that during a post game press conference or was it an unnecessary comment given the context? Also, what do we think of Koskinen’s clap back?
Ugh, drama, drama, drama! As much as I love entertainment, I can do without the pettiness, especially if the team is losing. Get it together, boys! In my opinion, it’s Tippett’s job to bring down the temperature at a moment like this and we did the exact opposite. Please let me know your thoughts in the comments!
I absolutely LOVE this from Koskinen. Good for him 👏🏼 https://t.co/hR6NjLyQ3g
— caroline szwed (@caroline_szwed) January 5, 2022
Ok back to McLeod! Open net aside, I do think Ryan McLeod has been doing a solid job for the Edmonton Oilers and maybe would continue to do so if he were given some more ice time. Remember his game against the Devils where he got to play his brother? It was one of his most impressive games, if not his most impressive this season but of course, this happens:
Ryan McLeod was clearly one of the Oilers best forwards yesterday & yet he played just 7:04 at 5v5… the lowest total amongst their forward group.
When he was on the ice, the team outscored the Devils 2-0.
Why did he not get/"earn" more ice time?
— Tyler Yaremchuk (@tyleryaremchuk) January 1, 2022
Which raises the question, at this point in time should McLeod be seeing more ice time and be rewarded for his efforts? Or is he still a player that needs to continue proving himself at a consistent level for this to happen?
Write me in the comments!
1- Kailer Yamamoto
In this tire fire of the last month and counting for the Oilers, Kailer Yamamoto has really stepped up to the plate. Remember when THIS was the only conversation being had about Yamo?
Yamamoto has gotten pretty much consistent top six minutes recently… he has no shots in his last 5 games.
— Tyler Yaremchuk (@tyleryaremchuk) December 12, 2021
Well, the tide has changed to something more a long the lines of this:
All 5’6 of Kailer Yamamoto the only guy to get in Trouba’s face for knocking McDavid around
— Jason (@AdamsOnHockey) January 4, 2022
5’6” Kailer Yamamoto is the only guy to stand up against 6’3” Jacob Trouba for slew-footing McDavid. 0 heart in this group right now. #LetsGoOilers
— Reliable Edmonton Oilers News (@oilersdailyy) January 4, 2022
This past month, Yamamoto has been the guy that’s stood out to me the most. If I could give a “most improved” award right now at this point of the season, it would go to him. In his game specifically against the Leafs, he brought a non-stop work ethic which helped him find Draisaitl and earn an assist on the second goal of the night. In this past week and month or so, Yamomoto is proving to be more of an effective two-way player that we know he can be. It was a rough start to the season for him but he’s starting to turn the page. Unfortunately he’s now on Covid-19 protocols with many other Oilers but I hope he returns to the ice healthy and continues to improve his game this season.
Here are the list of players that are out with Covid-19 as of now:
Lastly, in our Giant Pre-Game Show presented by Sherwood Ford before the Leafs game, I mentioned that if the Oilers couldn’t find a way to beat a very good Toronto team, then at the very least, I wanted to see them play with intensity, toughness and heart. At the bare minimum, I wanted to see a team that left it all out on the ice and made Toronto work for the entire game.
My question to you all reading this is, do you think they did that? Are we at a point in the season where we have to taper expectations because winning isn’t something that this team can do right now? Maybe we’re just in another seasonal slump but I honestly refuse to believe that. I’d love to hear your thoughts as to where you think the Oilers are at in this moment in time and if there’s faith and hope left in this team!
In our pregame show I said if the Oilers couldn’t get the W tonight against the Leafs, they had to at least play with intensity, toughness and heart.
Do we think they did that? Can they build on this performance and snap yet another losing streak? Or are they too far gone?
— caroline szwed (@caroline_szwed) January 6, 2022