Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Edmonton at Nashville, SNET-W, 6:00 PM

Game Day
Omark proves why he has NHL-level talen... oh wait, never mind

Game Story
The Oilers have been, well, streaky. As in they suck on the road and the win at home. But I think it goes deeper than that. In fact, every time we've been on Sportsnet Edmonton, we've lost. Huh. Go figure.

I propose we boycott that channel and move on.

Nashville, however, on a related to hockey note, has been stealing the collective thunder of the league. Pekka Rinne has been proving that his contract was not an error, but simply an accurate valueation, going 7-3-1 in his past 11 games A.C.

Fer the record, I've always thought that Rinne was an excellent player, mainly for buoying my fantasy team.

Oil Leak?
The Oilers playing on the road are a completely different team, if you haven't noticed. They're below .500, their collective play has been awful, and really, they resemble a shadow of the team that had rocked Chicago at home and kept up a 5 game win streak.

What's the problem? Coaching. 
No, I'm not hating on Tom Renney, I think he's fantastic. All I think is teams learned and realized how to play these Oilers - hit them because they're small. Make big people play against Hall. Force the Oilers to forget about speed and move on.

Here's what I think - This team will start winning some games like they are used to when Andy Sutton, a big body that can play hockey, comes back. In the mean and between time, package Hordichuk and Eager for a pugilist that can hit, skate, score and doesn't get injured when you throw a banana at him and ask him to catch. Wait a second, you say he exists? And his name is Hartikainen? No fooling?

Injury Report/Lines
Andy Sutton and Ryan Whitney, out with various injuries, remain close to but not in the lineup. 

Something tells me we'll have to spite the hockey gods to get in. Else they would have made Whitney, not Crosby, the comeback story of the year*.

Lines remain the same defunct mess that they were last game. There is a solution for lines...
The other guys.

Trust me - a Hemsky Gagner Paajarvi line is a lot better than a Hall Horcoff Hemsky line. That first line is all hot hands. That second line is all hard work. That third line has so much potential to be great.
That fourth line...

A change has been made - Plante has been recalled and Chorney has been assigned. I'm in favour of this move, because, well, Chorney is Chorney and Plante is not Chorney, therefore must be a little better.

Glorious Prediction - Oilers somehow scrape out of this one with a low-scoring 1-0 affair. Keen to keep the streak alive, Smyth scores with an assist off Ryan Nugent Hopkins
Realistic Prediction - Without an actual defence, this turns from bad to quickly worse - 3-1, with resident "hair" and Oiler killer Martin Erat breaking our back with an empty-netter
ELPH Prediction - Weber Hat-Trick. We get thumped. Because our defence is our defence. 6-2. 

*Which would have happened if Whitney morphed into Crosby. Who am I kidding?

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