Monday, 28 November 2011

Nashville at Edmonton, SNET-W, 7:30 PM

Nashville at Edmonton
It's Lidstrom. Deal with it.

Game Story
The battle of the slumping teams, the Oilers head home to hopefully fend off the Predators. That sounds wrong just typing it.

Anyways, the Oilers have been hot and cold, but according to the law of patterns, the Oil should be revved up for tonight's game. After losing in Dallas 4-1, they went to Nashville and destroyed them 6-2. They then went to Minnesota and won 5-2, which was previously thought to be impossible. Then, of course, they embarrassed themselves by losing 5-2 in Colorado, a win for Colorado at home previously thought to also be impossible.

The Predators were riding Pekka Rinne (sigh...) until he began to falter. Too many questions remain with this team, one of the primary remaining if they can find, in their elite system, a player who can score goals.
They lost to Calgary. Come on, Nashville!

Seriously - the Predators remain one elite goal scorer away from a team of dynastic proportions.

The mantra remains - all hail Trotz.

For the Predators, it looks like Francois Boullion will be out. To the Predators, it means the loss of a strong stay-at-home veteran defenceman who was providing leadership in the back end. To Oilers fans, he's that's the guy who fought that other guy that one time.

For the Oilers, the list continues, although it may be Andy Sutton's return ga... wait, you say another 7-10 days? Potter is out 4 weeks still? Optimism was way too contagious? I'm crazy? Cool.

Mainly, we're concerned about Taylor Hall, who, for some reason, is still listed as questionable for tonight. 

I don't care that we suck monkey without him - don't play him. Let him rehab his shoulder for a good week - he will be targeted tonight if he plays. He likely won't, his MRI is today and we'll know more about the nature of his injury. Gut tells me 2 weeks. Logic and hockey gods probably command season.

Glorious Prediction - Yeah! Paajarvi gets ignited with time on the top line, as the Kid Line is reborn in epic fashion. Paajarvi gets himself a two goal, four point night, the Nuge gets a goal and three assists, and Eberle gets props for his set-up ability, long over-due. 5-0. Khabi shutout.
Realistic Prediction - Oh! More of the same. Tight game, playing defence. Paajarvi doesn't get to reunite the top line, he duds. Smyth and RNH with goals (as per usual), Eberle with an empty netter. Oilers 3 - 1*.
ELPH Prediction - Nashville breaks their slump and Rinne gets me a tonne of points when the Oilers shell him for 41 shots, but get none past him. 2-0. 

News and Notes
Boudreau fired from the Capitals - slightly unexpected, but, in my "expert" opinion, the right and wrong move. 

Is he the best coach for the organization? No.
Is Boudreau to blame for the Capitals' slow start? No.
Is he a better coach than his replacement? Probably, but time will tell.

Maurice fired from the Hurricanes - very expected, thank god they did that.

Is he the best coach for this organization? Like hell no.
Is Maurice to blame for the Hurricanes slow start? Not really, actually, but he's a major part of it and the only part they can fire without a fire sale (Staal for Paajarvi [R4]).
Is Muller a better coach than Maurice? Yes. Muller was one of the major reasons to why the Canadiens made it to the East Conf. Finals Game 7 against Philly. You don't get that good without an amazing powerplay, especially when you are coached by Jacques "I-don't-do-offence" Martin.

*Yeah. I predicted the Oilers would win. My curse was broken when the team that I picked to win won. GO OILERS

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