Martin Gerber had an excellent regular season Oiler debut. Photo courtesy

Oilers 3, Avalanche 2 - Dramatic Finish Nets Oilers Two Points

It’s one thing to get the side of your head kicked in all over the ice, allow five goals, have the coach go off on a tirade and limp into the next game.

It’s quite another when the team seems to respond to the coach, score two goals early, and then finish with a spectacular one-timer with under a minute left in regulation to seal the victory. I’m still processing how it all happened.

Recap and video of a fantastic goal after the jump.  Let’s roll.

Believe me, when the team rolls out a clunker of a performance, I get no pleasure writing about it.  Starting off paragraphs with descriptor words like “lacklustre” are about as much fun for you to read as they are for me to write.  This game is the first really fun game I can remember watching this season with the exception of the first game of the year.  From what I can remember (the night grew hazy), that was a fun one too.

You know I’m a goalie guy at heart, right?

  • Martin Gerber got the nod in relief of Devan Dubnyk last night, and for a guy who hasn’t played an NHL game in quite some time, he looked fantastic.  Colorado snapped off 37 shots, and Gerber was there for 35 of them.  Who’s not happy with a performance like that?  A well deserved first win of the season for Martin Gerber.
  • Goals Scored by Players Who Might’ve Been In The Doghouse:  File that under Gilbert Brule and Andrew Cogliano.  Goals couldn’t have come at a better time for these two guys.  Brule was the victim of a benching not long ago, and Cogliano hasn’t had much success on the third line as of late.  Two important goals from two guys who clearly were in need of break.  Both goals came before four minutes had elapsed from the first period.  Brule’s goal never would’ve happened without hard work – he was being shoved off the puck eight feet to the right of Peter Budaj and he backhanded it in front and in.  Just watch it.

Cogliano’s goal was the result of a sleepy Avs defence, carrying it out in front of Budaj unscathed for a backhander.    2-0  with four minutes gone in the first?  Feels good, man.

  • Those two goals would make up for half of Edmonton’s shot total in the first period, and about 20% of the first two periods.  By the end of the second period, Colorado was doing what lots of squads have been doing to the Oilers for the past two years – outshooting them by a ton.  Thursday was no different, as the Avalanche outshot Edmonton 27-11 at the end of two.
  • Edmonton’s third period was a thing to see.  Squad wasn’t holding on for overtime and a point, they were out to win it.  Refreshing! Edmonton outshot the Avalanche 7-4 in the final frame, and the team was rewarded with a beauty from Taylor Hall with less than a minute remaining.

When is the last time Rexall Place was that loud?  I think it was after the Patrick Stefan / Ales Hemsky debacle over three years ago.

Some other bits and pieces – Tom Gilbert had a strong showing in tonight’s game.  Certain media outlets are crapping all over this guy, and he’s hardly the biggest problem on the team.  Gilbert led Edmonton with a 5 Corsi and had assists on both first period goals.  Theo Peckham was also a bright spot on the blue, lodging over 20 minutes ice time with a 2 Corsi.  The Oilers PK allowed a power play goal, but I’m pretty sure that only 1 PPG allowed will raise their overall PK%.  That’s funny, but it’s not.

If you don’t count the blowout in Phoenix, these last few games have almost been a pleasure to watch.

If you’re thinking of purchasing a hockey sweater for you or a loved one as a Christmas gift, you might want to get on the ball today.  In celebration of “Black Friday”, the NHL Shop is offering free customization on a all hockey sweaters purchased today.  Only today, 26 November 2010.  Depending on what team or style you’re fancying (a sweet new Jordan Eberle sweater), it could save you well over $50.  So if you’re in the market for one, today’s the day to jump on it.

As always, you can follow us on Twitter, check out our Facebook page, or invest in a brand new snazzy Oil On Whyte tee shirt.  It’s the holidays, don’t you know?

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Tags: Andrew Cogliano Gilbert Brule Martin Gerber Taylor Hall Tom Gilbert

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