If you watched last night’s game versus the Anaheim Ducks, good for you. You’ve just proven that you can sit through just about anything, whether it be an infomercial for the Flowbie or a Death Wish weekend movie marathon.
Needless to say, it was tough going. Do come along for the recap.
Good things happened in last night’s blowout. Maybe not a whole lot of them, but some things weren’t terrible.
- Oilers allowed five goals last night, but were able to outshoot the Ducks 33-28. It didn’t translate to anything on the scoresheet, but I’m sifting for anything to hold up in this mess.
- Anyone who took more than one faceoff for the Oilers did well, especially Ryan O’Marra (12/15). Also good: Belanger (7/10), Horcoff (9/14), and Gagner (7/14).
- A tip of the hat goes to Sam Gagner stepping in to fight Francois Beauchemin after Beauchemin tried to take liberty with Taylor Hall. I think I can count the amount of fights that Gagner has been in on one hand. Also, credit to Beauchemin for not putting another forward on IR.
Without Eberle and RNH, this team is almost a spitting image of last year’s squad. As long as they’re out, you’re going to see a lot of what you saw last year. We got a little taste of 2010-11 Khabibulin again last night. Team is asking Jeff Petry to pull big time minutes, and without Gilbert (or another experienced defenceman), teams are going to run roughshod over him. The same things that were happening with Eberle, Petry and Gilbert when they were on the roster are now getting magnified even more because they’re out. Remember when we found out that Gilbert was gone for a month and I bemoaned how team GAA was about to go up?
There are a couple of exceptions (the St. Louis game last year where the Oilers shot 13 times is one that I can think of right off the bat), but this game was one of the most frustrating to watch as an Oilers fan.
The Oilers have some bright young players. The brightest stars of this year haven’t been playing recently due to injury, but the team was losing way before Gilbert, Eberle and RNH went down. Even though those three alone didn’t make the Oilers a playoff-calibre team, they were fun to watch.
That is to say, I don’t blame the players in this mess. Sure, they’re the products on the ice. But if I iced a midget-B team against the Red Wings, would you expect them to win? The Oilers aren’t a midget B team, but I’d earnestly watch the big club take on the Barons.
The only thing that’s keeping this team from the basement is October’s hot start.
And, maybe Columbus. But even Columbus wins even once in a while.
The keys are in your pocket, Tambellini. Take us somewhere up.
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