Khabibulin - Photo courtesy cbc.ca

Canes 7, Oilers 1- Oh God Please Make It Stop

I expected a little bit of trouble in Raleigh what with Shawn Horcoff being out of the lineup due to an injury.

What we got was almost a football game.

I really, really hope for the team (and especially, the fans) that this is the worst game that we see this year.  Because if anyone has to sit through another game like that, I just might have to start stocking up on those cutesy little bags they give you on airplanes that look like they could hold a couple of crullers, but you know that you’re not near a bakery.

It was that bad.  Rather, the first eight minutes needed to be placed into a box, urinated on, and then set ablaze never to be seen again by human eyes.  Let’s discuss.

In no particular order -

  • It wasn’t Nikolai Khabibulin’s night.  The previous sentence was an understatement.  Khabibulin mercifully got the hook shortly after the fourth Carolina goal was scored just seven minutes into the game.  He was replaced by Devan Dubnyk.  Dubnyk had a far better outing, but you could’ve had both goalies in the net at the same time, and I’m not sold on that working either.  Oh Lord, it was that terrible.  Khabibulin finished with four saves in eight shots, and a goals against of something around 32.00.  But, it wasn’t just Khabibulin that had a forgettable night.
  • The penalty kill rides again!  The Oiler PK just climbed itself over a 70% success rate before tonight’s game.  You can take that 70% and forget it for a while, as the Oilers surrendered three powerplay goals.  The Oilers got into penalty trouble early (although a tip of the hat goes to the 5 on 5  line of Penner -Cogliano-Eberle line as the only productive line throughout the game) and never was able to return to any kind of form.
  • Not quite sure why Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle were benched in the third period.  The Oilers were down by five goals by this point, so if you’d like to use the “I don’t want our young starts to be injured” line, then go ahead.  I still call shenanigans.
  • The Hurricanes were able to do what they wanted, whenever they pleased with the puck.  It was a night of total domination on theeir behalf.  Jeff Skinner had a goal and two assists.  Joe Corvo had two goals and two assists.  Eric Stall had four assists.  Cam Ward was serviceable, but that’s all he really needed to be.

To put it into a nice, tiny little package:  Team needs to forget this game even happened.  It won’t get any easier as the next game is in Detroit on Thursday.  I’m not really envying anyone at the next practise.

Tags: Nikolai Khabibulin Penalty Kill

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