Monday, October 29, 2007
Saturday, October 27, 2007
Wednesday, October 24, 2007
Tuesday, October 23, 2007
Saturday, October 20, 2007
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Saturday, October 13, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
Sunday, October 07, 2007
Saturday, October 06, 2007
Thursday, October 04, 2007
"What happened was, all of a sudden, we got a lot of defencemen. We traded for Grebeshkov. We signed (Dick) Tarnstrom. We traded for Pitkanen. We signed (Sheldon) Souray. Then, I'm thinking, 'Holy mackerel, we've got a lot of guys here,' " said Lowe.
Holy Mackerel! And Matt Greene is in the top four! Holy Mackerel!
And of course here we see Greene getting beat and about to take a penalty. Very apropos.
Yipes! I so want to say that the Oilers are going to defy all logic and be a playoff team this year but the fact that our man, who struggles against the opposition's garbage, is going to actually be facing guys like Paul Stastny, Brian Rolston, Kristin Huselius and so on, makes me remember ... 2010, 2011, 2012 ... that is when this team will be ready for primetime.
Happy to see the season start though. I think the vets who struggled or who were hurt last season - Horcoff, Moreau, Stoll, Torres, Reasoner - all bounce back, especially Horcoff. I think Penner will score thirty, even if he just stands outside the crease and shovels them in. I think if Hemsky stays healthy that he finally has a big year.
Some of the kids will struggle but I hope that one, maybe two, scores fifteen plus and maybe one scores over fifty points. It will be interesting to see if Gagner can stick and contribute.
I think if there was a true # 1 man that this would be a good D from 2 through 6 - Pitkanen on the first pair, Staios and Tarnstrom on the second, Souray and Gilbert on the third - but bumping everyone up a place is not going to do it.
Tenth place I think.
As for playoff teams I was seven for eight last year in the West. I think we're looking at Detroit, Nashville, Colorado, Minnesota, Vancouver, Calgary, Anaheim and San Jose with Dallas being the only team to really have a shot at cracking that lineup. Note how Dallas and Minnesota are always good solid teams? Nice.
Detroit is my pick to win it all - they were a deflection away from getting past Anaheim last year, imo. San Jose and the Ducks will be right on their heels with Colorado being a team that will also be dangerous. As for a team that may fall to pieces - the Flames. Duhatschek had an interesting take on Phaneuf the other day - he questioned him as being mostly sizzle (big shot, big hits) without the steak and compared him to Derek Morris as a guy who was famous but never really progressed after his first couple of years in the league. If he cannot handle top dog minutes or Aucoin is really done the Flames may be in a little bit of trouble.
Out East Ottawa is the team to beat with the Rangers being a threat if their D is not as thin as it looks. Pittsburgh is a year away and for a darkhorse, how about Les Sabres, if its possible for them to be labelled as such. Last season I was four out of eight in picking playoff teams out East - lets go with Florida (someone has to come out of the Southeast), New Jersey (see Dallas/Minnesota), Philly and the Leafs. If Toskala sucks bag or the Devils go south then look for Atlanta, Tampa or Montreal to get in. I think the East is a lot more fluid - I could see almost anyone but the Isles, Caps or Bruins getting in.
Detroit - Ottawa final with the Wings taking the Cup.
Oh, one last thing. For the second straight season the geniuses who run TPTUUA (the Passion That Unites Us All) traded for a goalie and immediately handed him a longterm deal despite questions about whether he was a bonafide #1. And the coach did not play him in the home opener because it seems he did not want to put any pressure on him? Did I get that right?
Oh, it is to laugh.
Lets go Oilers!
Tuesday, October 02, 2007
Ethan Moreau was named captain of the Oilers this morning. He's from the Gator school of captaincy; I think Moreau is a good choice and should inspire the kids on the team. Few work harder then Chopper and few are tougher. I'd love to find a clip of that Gratton fight. If inspiration fails with the youngsters perhaps he will threaten them and make them cry.
In other news it looks like the opening roster has been set. With Roy on the IR, the Oilers decided to go with seven Dmen and Laddy Smid was sent out. Gilbert sticks, as he should have, and how does that Tommy Salo deal look now?
Although a bag of pucks and a sandwich would have been a good return for Salo at that point.
Of course sending Smid out just emphasizes what a complete joke last fall was when they played him with Staios on the second pairing rather then paying a little bit of money for a veteran Dman and letting Laddy get his feet wet on the third pair or playing big minutes in the AHL. The kid is likely going to be a good Dman but the handling of his situation has been a farce since day one.
And to everyone's relief Stortini was sent out as well. I like Stortini who was captain of my hometown junior club but he has already played more games in the NHL then I ever figured he would. And so after all of that it looks like both Pouliot and Jacques stick.
And Thoresen was put on waivers - hopefully he sneaks through. My guess is he comes back up if / when Gagner gets sent down.
So the Oilers have a decided Duck like look to them (circa '05/'06) - two lines to handle tougher minutes, although with what success we will have to see - Horcoff-Penner-Hemsky and Moreau-Reasoner-Brodziak -one to take the soft minutes - Torres-Stoll-Nilsson - and one line of kids to take the butter soft minutes and get some time on special teams.
I'm excited about this team but I'm known to be soft in the head.
Oh well, every year some team surprises. Why the hell not the Oilers?
Will come back down to earth in, um, let's say a week.