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Concern In Edmonton After A Three Game Sweep By The Toronto Maple Leafs

from Mark Spector of Sportsnet,

It was supposed to be a measuring stick, this first-place clash with the division-leading Toronto Maple Leafs.

The measuring stick, it seems, may now have to be surgically removed.

How badly did it get for the Edmonton Oilers, losers by scores of 4-0, 3-0, and in Wednesday’s finale, 6-1?

“They embarrassed us three games in a row. That’s a tough one to swallow,” said defenceman Tyson Barrie, pointless in all three games, like so many others.

There isn’t a single element of the sport of hockey that Edmonton can claim to have executed better than Toronto through nine periods of hockey, so thorough was the defeat.

Whether it’s a tangible, like winning battles or scoring goals, or intangibles — like heart — the Leafs had more and did it better.

As such, everything about this Oilers team is open for question.

“It’s very concerning,” said a grave head coach Dave Tippett. “Very concerning that we don’t want to grab the competitive level in a series like this.”

continued

Game highlights are below.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, | KK Hockey | Permalink
 

Comments

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Toronto parade planning is now hitting a gear we haven’t seen in long long time.

I’m still thinking there are a few teams in the U.S. who would give them a lot more trouble than that Tim Horton’s Division.

Posted by evileye on 03/04/21 at 01:21 PM ET

Paul's avatar

Agreed, the Canadian division was built up big time, now it is crumbling back to earth.

The hype was Vancouver, Calgary, Montreal and Edmonton where supposed to be much improved.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 03/04/21 at 01:23 PM ET

Royal Grand Exalted PooBah's avatar

Kenny better call up Steve and trade for Helm and Glendening.

Posted by Royal Grand Exalted PooBah from the basement of the Alamo on 03/04/21 at 01:39 PM ET

Avatar

Kenny better call up Steve and trade for Helm and Glendening.

He might want to add Bernier to the mix.

As much as I like Glendening I hope they move him if they can get a good return. They can always TRY to re-sign him in the offseason.

 

Posted by evileye on 03/04/21 at 01:50 PM ET

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Lol, every team in the North division would beat, and is in a better long term position than the wings, even the Sens.

Posted by patrickjoyce19 on 03/04/21 at 10:25 PM ET

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Lol, every team in the North division would beat, and is in a better long term position than the wings, even the Sens.

I don’t think anyone was arguing that the Wings were better but be careful when looking at long term predictions.

Winnipeg was supposed to have won a Cup by now. Now their defense has been decimated and they had to move out Laine. There is still a lot of talent but will they be able to keep it together long enough to climb to the top.

Calgary is crumbling right now. They could just as easily find themselves sinking lower than rising to the top. I wrote this before reading the Flames coach had been dismissed. I’ve been expecting that. Is he really the problem though? The pipeline isn’t that strong.

Edmonton stockpiled high draft picks but has almost no playoff success to show for it. They still have big question marks in goal and a defense that isn’t championship caliber. While they should be able to compete in years to come sometimes getting to the ultimate goal is harder than it looks.

Vancouver should be ok but is a perfect example of how early success can lead disappointments. Management has to show continued patience and not overreact.

Montreal is proverbially overrated. While I think they’ve made some good moves in recent years there is still a ways to go and now there are questions about whether Price is beginning to fade. At least they finally realized a good backup is necessary.

Ottawa has a nice group of high-level prospects but until ownership shows that it can keep a quality group together, I won’t be convinced they are on the right track. Melnyk can screw up anything.

Toronto obviously has the brightest outlook of the bunch but they need to have real success soon because the cap is catching up with them. Do they have a playoff goalie to take them all the way? Have they invested too much in offense? Do they have the right role players to win playoff games. Backup goaltending has been much better this season but would you want to rely on those backups to win a playoff series?

The moral of this story is it generally takes multiple steps/stages to win it all and each one is an opportunity to falter. Falter once and they can be right back in the pack. Falter twice and they just might have to start over. Then, the difference between them and the Wings isn’t so much.

Keep in mind that each of these teams has had more opportunities in the last 10 years to pick high-end (top 5) talent than the Wings have had. That’s a huge factor in their successful outlook. Once they have to start drafting lower, can they keep getting stronger?

 

Posted by evileye on 03/05/21 at 11:52 AM ET

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Paul Kukla founded Kukla’s Korner in 2005 and the site has since become the must-read site on the ‘net for all the latest happenings around the NHL.

From breaking news to in-depth stories around the league, KK Hockey is updated with fresh stories all day long and will bring you the latest news as quickly as possible.

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