Oh it’s on, folks. Hockey Day In Canada… the Battle of Alberta. What more could you ask for? Well, a win tonight sure as hell would be nice. Forget about the Dive for Five, Tank for Taylor/Tyler, Saggin’ for Seguin, Foul-up for Fowler or whatever you want to call it. This is the battle for ultimate hockey supremacy. OK, maybe not quite that big, but it sure would feel good to see a win tonight, no?
As we all know, the Oilers are sitting at 12 straight losses (including OT/Shootout losses), and have 1 one win in their last 20. The Flames are winless in 9 games. This is the battle for a bloody win. And let’s hope it’s a bloody, spirited game. If these teams come out flat, I’ll be surprised. This is the type of game that SHOULD bring out the fight in both teams. And with it being in Calgary’s barn, I’d love to see an Edmonton win tonight. Calgary is also on the verge of sweeping the season series, and the Oilers can not let that happen!
No heart/brain prediction tonight.. just one prediction: 5-2 Oilers.
Edmonton Oilers Projected Line-Up (subject to change)
Souray – Gilbert
Grebeshkov – Visnovsky
Chorney – Strudwick
Calgary Flames Projected Line-Up (subject to change)
Boyd – Backlund – Iginla
Glencross – Langkow -Bourque
Nystrom – Jokinen – Lundmark
Sjostrom – Prust – McGrattan
Regehr – Phaneuf
Giordano – Bouwmeester
Pardy – Sarich
- O’Sullivan is in, Comrie is out. Stortini remains out of the lineup for this game.
- Dubnyk gets the nod in net for the Oilers.
|1ST PERIOD SCORING|
|– 3:45 – Boyd from Backlund, Iginla|
|Grebeshkov loses the puck behind the net. The Flames get it out front and Boyd puts it away.|
|– 12:25 – Gagner (PP) from O’Sullivan, Grebeshkov|
|O’Sullivan backhands a pass from the slot to Gagner who is near the goal line. He shelfs it upstairs with very little room. Nice goal.|
|– 13:20 – Bourque from Bouwmeester, Iginla|
|On a delayed penalty call by captainslashalot, Bouwmeester drives into the Oilers zone, behind the net and throws it out front to Bourque who one times it past Doobie.|
|2ND PERIOD SCORING|
|– 6:48 – Boyd unassisted|
|Sheldon Souray passes it to Gagner who tries to touch pass it to Moreau, but it’s intercepted by Boyd who beats Dubnyk.|
|– 7:32 – Phaneuf from Lundmark, Jokinen|
|Phaneuf wires a one-timer with a screen in front of Dubnyk. Dubnyk doesn’t even flinch as it blows past him.|
|– 15:13 – Iginla (PP) from Giordano, Jokinen|
|On a 5-on-3, Girodano takes a hard shot from the high slot that Dubnyk kicks to the side. Iginla picks up the rebound on the side of the net and puts it in a wide open net.|
|3RD PERIOD SCORING|
|– 9:40 – Iginla from Boyd, Bouwmeester|
|Boyd loses control of the puck while going to the ned and it slides across the crease to Iginla who is there to bang it in.|
|SHOTS ON GOAL|
1ST PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
16:55 – Gilbert jumps in on a play and one-times a shot in on Kipper. Best chance so far for the Oilers.
14:48 – Dubnyk gives it away to Sjostrom behind the net. Nothing bad becomes of this though.
13:35 – Nice take away by Nilsson to keep this shift alive… the Flames have been hemmed in their zone for a good minute and a half or so as the Oil run this shift like it’s a powerplay.
12:12 – Pisani takes a hard hit from Giordano while dumping it out of the Oilers zone.
9:25 – Boyd hits Gilbert knee on knee, earning a penalty. Horcoff drops the gloves with Giordano. He takes some good shots early on. He lands a couple good punches of his own, and gets the take down, but I’ll score this one a win for Giordano.
6:10 – Bouwmeester feeds Jokinen a pass, blue line to blue line and Jokinen gets in all alone on Dubnyk. Dubnyk makes a nice stick save on the shot by Jokinen.
5:25 – Phaneuf hits O’Sullivan late after a whistle. O’Sullivan gives him a good shot back. Quasimodo loses his balance and lands an accidental elbow on O’Sullivan.
2ND PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
16:07 – Regehr rides Brule into the end boards on a dump in, sending Brule to the ice.
15:00 – Grebeshkov jumps in on the play and rips a laser off the top bar.
14:10 – Great shot block by Moreau here.
12:28 – The Oilers call a time out after the Flames fourth goal.
10:53 – Glencross gets a pass from behind the goalline in the slot that he nearly buries to make it 5-1, but it hits the bar.
8:10 – Souray straight arms Jokinen as he’s trying to skate into his office, and he sends Jokinen to the ice and sliding into the side boards.
7:34 – McGratton tries to get something going with Strudwick. Moreau steps in to his aid as well. The only thing that happens here is some angry gazes, a few words, and some more Mark Lee Flames-love.
7:20 – Visnovsky blasts a shot from the high slot that redirects off Pardy and into Kippers armpit area as he makes a save.
6:20 – Souray roughs up Iginla and gets called, putting the team down 2 men.
5:48 – On the 5-on-3, Dubnyk makes a nice, aggressive save on a Phaneuf slap shot as he comes out to challenge.
3RD PERIOD HIGHLIGHTS
18:16 – Good short-handed chance by Glencross as he wheels past Visnovsky, who got all turned up. But he is stopped by Dubnyk.
17:41 – Brule sets up Jacques who gets in alone with Kipper. He goes forehand – backhand, but Kipper doesn’t give him a lot to shoot at.
16:50 – Iggy and Souray drop the gloves and helmets. Not a bad fight. Both guys are swinging for the fences. Souray lands one right on the button. Not much else landed it didn’t seem, and both guys have troubles keeping their balance. It’s later announced that Souray left the game favoring his wrist.
15:30 – Phaneuf blindsides Potulny with a hit.
14:38 – Cogliano blows through the defence (Sarich and Bouwmeester) and gets alone on Kipper. Kipper goes down and Cogliano goes to the backhand, but Kipper throws out the glove. Cogliano draws a penalty on the play as well.
12:34 – Bouwmeester’s penalty ends and he nearly receives an airmailed breakaway pass at the blue line from Glencross who was in the Flames goal area, but it just slides past Bouwmeester. Dubnyk freezes the puck as it comes to him.
5:38 – McGratton burns Grebeshkov one on one, but Dunbyk bails him out. Yikes, this team’s defense is disgusting.
A 6-1 loss to a team in a horrible slump… how do you think this one went? Brutal all around game, by the heartless Oilers. The Oilers have now officially set history – the first NHL team ever to lose every single game in a month (including OT/SO losses). To top it off, Souray left the game with an injured hand after fighting Iginla. Quinn mentioned in his post game that the hand is fractured (the extent is unknown though at this point). This may keep him out for the rest of the season, which creates even more of a problem than it sounds (hint: think trade deadline….). Kind of have to wonder when the Oilers will win again. More and more ways pop up to kick this team while it’s down.
Next game, the real Biggest Loser challenge – Monday vs. Carolina, 7:30 at home on PPV. Order this one, and I’ll put you on a waiting list for a lobotomy.