Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Game Day: Oilers vs Wings

So Dicky has sat out a couple games, what does that mean? His days as an Oiler might be numbered according to sportsnet. With Souray and Pitkanen eventually returning this month, someone is out. The Oilers website has Tarnstrom drawing into tonight's game, paired with Smid, along with Pouliot. Roli gets the start but Garon will get one very soon, according to MacT. With Hasek and his creaky hip out, Osgood starts. Whoa, is this 1998 or what? Anyways, following a great shootout win on Sunday against the Ducks, who are just as sucky as we are this year, this could be the turning point for the Oilers. It'd be nice to see them get on a roll and win two games again.

I'm watching TSN right now and they're saying that it'll be the job of Gilbert and Grebeshkov to shut down Zetterberg's line, the number one line in hockey. Can I just say.....WHAT? Gilbert, yes good idea but Grebeshkov? That boy is redefining the word chaos!!

Anyways, I'm looking for a victory tonight as Cogliano, Gagner and Hemsky are freakin' flying. Did you see Cogs short-handed goal? How about the shootout goal by Gagner? Fantastic. This team is fun to watch. They may let you down defensively but bloody hell, they are exciting at times!!

Oilers win 4-1.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

He Hath Returned

Okay, I won't dredge up the past and go into details about the whole fiasco that surrounded Smyth and Lowe last year. I will say this: no one person deserves the entire blame for what happened. I truly believe they were both negotiating in good faith, thought it would get done and all would be right with the world. Anyways, they both cocked it up. The end.

So the Mullett returns to Edmonton tonight. Am I boo'ing? I have not decided. I will wear my Smyth jersey for the first time since he was traded. I refused to wear it and even went out this summer and bought two vintage jersey's before those new crappy ones came out. So I am a Fuhr and Messier girl now. But I will pull out the 94 one last time. I hope the Oilers will be classy and do up a pre-game appreciation for Smyth like they did for Smith. I will cheer for that. However, once the puck drops, he's the opposition and I sure won't be cheering for him. Boo'ing him? I'm not sure.

So how badly do the Oilers lose tonight? Man, this will be interesting. Joni Pitkanen is out for a couple weeks so Roy will probably draw in for tonight's game. Maybe our Laddy Smid will get a call-up soon since the Oilers are down a few d-men. I sure hope so. He's a big improvement over most of that defense.

Okay back to the game tonight. I think the Oilers come out hard and strong. This will be their best game since the two opening winning games. I'll be optimistic and say the Oil pull this out 3-2. Hemmer breaks out finally and scores all three.

UPDATE: Very good game even though our boys lost. 2 bad bounces cost the Oilers two goals in the first. One horrible penalty call with 2 mins left cost the boys a comeback. How the refs called a hook on Hemsky is crazy.....when the other guy had grabbed this stick and was holding it! Idiots.

Pitkanen is now out for 4 weeks instead of two. He's having surgery. When the hell did this happen? I can't find any more info on this injury. They've gotta call up Smid now. Roy actually played decent tonight. Another stinkfest for Greene. No surprise.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Do you??

Well MacT, do you? Do you feel lucky tonight punk? Our favorite blender is coaching his 500th game for the Oilers. Yes the blender is out big time so far this year. How many different line combinations have we seen this year? Too freakin' many to even count. Please MacT, put the blender down and walk slowly away from it. No sudden movements.....

So our boys finally ended their wee little four game losing streak on Thursday against Phoenix. Anyone else not impressed with their performance? They won 4-2 (empty netter) but it was NOT a pretty game. The blender was out in full force and the Oilers seemed to have forgotten who they were playing. It's Phoenix for f**k's sake! Embarrassing performance. Roloson saved your asses from a major humiliation. So where do we go from here? Well Schrempy got a big 3.12 of ice time and then was sent back down to the AHL, with Jacques being recalled again. I know many people on the message boards have a major hard-on for Schremp. I have really no allegiance either way. He might develop into an NHL'er and might not. But how can you even give a guy much of a chance with only 3.12 minutes??? You can't obviously. Don't call him up if you can't give him serious playing time. Let him continue his endless development in the AHL.

So the Oil finish their road trip in Calgary tonight. Calgary hasn't looked all that good this year so far, and are only 2 points ahead of Edmonton. Yes, Mike Keenan has done wonders for this team. I love it. Anyways, Kipper has been struggling and Calgary is beatable. The Oilers stand a chance but they sure need to play better than they did in Phoenix. It was an ugly win. Cogliano and Brodziak were looking good. Keep it up boys!

Prediction: Oilers win 4-2 but a good 4-2 this time!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Separated!

Uh-oh, someone has hurt themselves. That beautiful shoulder of Sheldon's is separated. Oh no. No information on how serious the injury is and how long our excellent powerplay specialist will be out. Wait, he hasn't improved our PP yet. I should not call him that. Our over-paid and ineffective powerplay quarterback is injured. Is that better? Yes I believe it is. Hopefully, I can call him our kickass PP QB someday but not yet.

So the Oilers will be without SS for the next game against Phoenix. Seriously, this is just what the Oil need. A crappy team to kick the crap out of. Now let's hope the trend of the Oilers playing like crap themselves discontinues. This team needs to get back on the winning side and this is just the game for them. Also, Schremp is practicing with Hemmer and Cogs on the first line....could this be any more of a gift for Robbie? Time to man-up.....this is the best opportunity you will ever get. Don't blow it!

Prediction: Oilers 6-1 over Phoenix with the Cogs-Hemmer-Schremp line scoring 5 of the 6 goals. The 6th goal goes to Gagne, his first as an Oiler!

Monday, October 15, 2007

Not the Problem??

With the Oilers' powerplay at an anemic 1 for 25, people are beginning to talk. Dan Barnes from the Edmonton Journal speaks blasphemously or does he??

And you thought it was all Craig Simpson's fault.

The Oilers' power play, and isn't that a classic oxymoron, is fumbling along at a one-for-25 clip through six games. Its sparkling four per cent success rate ranks dead last in the 30-team National Hockey League.

And Simpson is no longer around to sport the goat horns.

So the question is: was Simpson really the problem or not? Now that MacT has 'taken over' reins of the powerplay this year, that question is very interesting. I've always insisted that MacT had his hands all over the powerplay in the past. How else do you explain Toby Peterson, whom enjoyed some man-love from MacT, on the powerplay?? This year, the powerplay has some new participants but strangely, the powerplay is exactly the same. The same plays, the same strategy.....get it to the point for the one-timer.

So maybe it's time to let Simpson off the hook a bit? Not completely because he was still the powerplay coach but maybe it's time to cut him some slack if MacT did in fact hover. One thing: it's early in the season and no time to panic just yet but the powerplay needs to mix it up. You have some serious players on the PP, why not let them be more creative? Another month of PP stinkage?? Then people can panic.

Update on Ethan Moreau: it is a broken bone in the foot like we've all suspected. He's out for at least another couple weeks.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Quick Reaction

Following the loss to Vancouver tonight, the Oilers have sent down Nilsson and Jacques while recalling Schremp and Stortini. I mean, I just got home from the Oilers game and went to check out TSN and voila, there is the info. Hell, it's already on the Oilers website. That's a damn quick reaction. I like it. I like giving Schremp a chance and getting Jacques outta here. Seriously, he had sooooo many chances tonight and cocked them up. Open nets, passes to him in the slot and missing the net or missing the puck altogether. I do not like his game at all right now.

What else to say about tonight's game? Garon was junk. Greene was crap. Torres finally showed up but for brief moments as usual. I have nothing else to say right now. It was a disappointing night. They had great chances early on but no finish!

Saturday, October 06, 2007

Four More Years.....

Four more years folks! Yes Kevin Lowe has been given a contract extension for four more years. Honestly, I'm surprised at this announcement. I thought he might have worked his way out of town. With the contentious deals this summer (Vanek and Penner), I was thinking the Oilers would send him packing or at least wait until later in the season to decide his fate. But they give him a new deal in October. If this team is tanking in March, that would have been the opportunity to get rid of him. But he's here to stay.

I've always been a big supporter of Kevin Lowe but the past year has been hard to defend him. I support the Smyth trade, the other Smith trade, but the deal to bring Penner did not sit right with me. I hope he proves us all wrong. However, I truly believe the Oilers need some fresh blood. Kevin has been GM since 2000 and only made the playoffs three times. We're getting into Maple Leaf territory. Since when do we reward our employees when they make the playoffs 3 times in 7 years (okay one year was the lockout)?

I think the Oilers are a nice young team right now, and I like their chances this year and in the future. BUT....Lowe might have ruffled too many feathers and this will only hurt the Oil. Who will trade with this man? Who will sign as a free agent here? While I think Lowe is a great GM at times, it's not enough. Both MacT and Lowe need to move on...but that won't be happening for several years. So fans, we're going to have to live with it!

Today also marks the return of our captain, Jason Smith, to Edmonton. Also returning, Joffrey "disaster" Lupul! I hope Torres runs over Lupul...payback for dogging it last year!!!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

2007-2008 Edmonton Oilers Preview

I'm not expecting the 2007-2008 Oilers to win the Stanley Cup this year. I won't predict that since the team is not good enough. However, there are elements of the 'good enough' already on this team. Obviously, there needs to be more of the 'good enough' and we all hope Kevin Lowe evens out the situation. We have obviously too many defensemen and not enough scoring up front. I like the addition of the rookies, giving them the minutes to develop but Kevin Lowe is confusing. Are we rebuilding or going for it all? Gagner in the lineup is a rebuild but the Souray signing is not. Kevin Lowe has confused us and himself. Check out an article in the Edm Journal today where he says, "What happened was, all of a sudden, we got a lot of defencemen...Then, I'm thinking, 'Holy mackerel, we've got a lot of guys here." I'm hoping you were keeping track of all the deals Kevin and just didn't forget how many d-men you had.

So even though the team does not have a clear direction, I still like the make-up of this team. The new additions have fit in easily and things are on the up-swing. So here are the newbies and the goners!

New players: Sheldon "Chaos" Souray, Joni Pitkanen, Dick "Tricky" Tarnstrom, Dustin Penner, Geoff Sanderson, Denis Grebeshkov, Mathieu Garon.

Younglings: Sam Gagner, Andrew Coligano, Kyle Brodziak, Marc Pouliot, JF Jacques, Robert Nilsson.

Gone: Joffrey "atrocious" Lupul, Jason Smith, Petr Sykora, Jan Hedja, Ryan Smyth, MA Bergeron, Jussi Markkanen, Brad Winchester, Toby Peterson, Daniel Tjarnqvist.

So we begin the year with a huge turnover of players. They seem to be meshing well during pre-season so that is a good sign. Gagner has made the team, but will probably get his 9 game try-out before being sent back down to the minors. I think he has an outside chance to stay up, but the man to watch on this team is Coligano! If he can continue the momentum from the pre-season, the Oilers may actually have a player in the mix for the Calder. But really, that isn't important. It's important to get the rookies and young players in the mix, give them some minutes and let them develop. I can take a development year, if it gives the team a better chance the following year. So I say let the rookies play and play often!!!

Hemsky, will this be your breakout year? Will Penner live up to expectations? Will Greene ever be traded or thrown over the train tracks?? I vote for tracks. Hell, I will help tie him down myself. I despise him with every fiber of my being. The fact that he's in the lineup instead of Smid or even Grebeshkov is atrocious. Lowe/MacT refuse to admit they've made a mistake with this player. He's not developing, he's regressing. Time to cut him loose!!!

With several sports publications picking the Oilers to finish 13th, I have to politely disagree and call them retards! This team has solid goaltending, great PK and now a PP but give up defensively 5 on 5. The forwards may not be better than last year (yes we'll miss Smyth and Sykora's goals) but the point is, they will be in a year or two. I'd rather have a good Oilers team two years from now with Hemmer, Cogliano and Gagner, than a mediocre team with Smyth on it now.

I pick the Oilers to be their usual self: fighting for the 8th playoff spot up until the last week of the regular season. If Kevin Lowe fixes the unbalance between defense-offense (aka: trading defense for a top 6 forward), this team makes the playoffs. Otherwise, this team is working towards next year which I am okay with! I

TSN has a story up about the Oilers and this was the practice lines according to TSN:

Forwards
Penner - Horcoff - Hemsky
Torres - Stoll - Nilsson
Jacques - Cogliano - Gagner
Pouliot
Defence
Greene - Souray
Staios - Pitkanen
Tarnstrom - Gilbert
Grebeshkov

GOILERS!!!!

Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Boo Hoo!

What a freakin' cry baby! He took my candy. Wah wah wah!! I'm not the prettiest girl on the block. Wah wah wah! He's still going on and on about the Penner offer sheet. Quit whining you little girl. The rules allow teams to make offer sheets. What's the problem here? Ooh he offered to much? Ummm GM's overpay players all the time. Why should an offer sheet be any different? Check out the video!

"If I had run my team into the sewer like that I wouldn't throw a grenade at the other 29 teams and my own indirectly," said Burke. "So I have no intention of speaking to him anytime soon."

Quit your endless blabbering. It's not like someone shot your dog. Suck it up loser!

UPDATE: Dany Heatley will remain a Senator. I'm happy he stays with the Sens, the only other team I kinda like and more importantly, Canada keeps one of their own superstars! Nice job Ottawa!!!



Monday, October 01, 2007

Gagner in, Moreau is captain and Smid to the AHL!

Sam Gagner signs an entry-level contract today and looks like he'll be around on opening night. If nothing else, he'll likely get his 9 game try-out and could still be sent down without burning a year on his contract.

Gagner's deal is "a three-year entry level contract. His NHL compensation is the maximum $875,000 per year, which includes an annual signing bonus of $87,500. It is, of course, a two-way contract with a minor league salary provision of $65,000."

Bob Mackenzie also thinks Moreau will be the captain but please, this was a no-brainer decision. I called this weeks ago. It's a great choice and I like it!

Other news has Patrick Thoresen on waivers apparently. I'm a bit surprised about this but with our other young players coming up and playing incredibly well, someone was bound to get shafted. I liked him but his performance during training camp and the pre-season was not strong. I agree to give the kids a shot.

According to TSN: these were the practice lines today (you can obviously scratch Thoresen's name from that list!

Forwards
Penner - Horcoff - Hemsky; Torres - Stoll - Nilsson; Cogliano - Gagner - Pouliot; Sanderson - Reasoner - Brodziak; Jacques - Thoresen - Stortini
Defence
Greene - Souray, Staios - Pitkanen, Tarnstrom - Gilbert, Smid - Grebeshkov


And one piece of nostalgic news: guess who is the new captain of the Philadelphia Flyers? Yes, our former captain Jason Smith! I miss him already!!

UPDATE: Moreau is the man!! He becomes the Oilers 12th Captain!!!! Interesting, assistant captains will be Hemsky and Horcoff for home games, with Staios and Stoll for away games. I like that!

UPDATE: Smid and Stortini get sent to the minors! Holy hell.....I do not understand the decision to demote Smid. He had a decent camp and easily outplayed Greene. Why the hell is Greene still on this bloody team??? Smid is your future. They threw him to the wolves last year, giving a rookie like him way too many minutes and he didn't exactly thrive but didn't perish either. He held his own and now he's thrown down to the AHL. Good news: Gilbert made the team and will be in the season opener.
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