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Oilers Prospects Better Than Canucks Prospects? Oilers Win 7-2


With a few Europeans who would have been especially touched by the loss of the KHL Lokomotiv Yaroslavl team on the ice for the Edmonton Oilers versus Vancouver Canucks prospects game, in Anton Lander and his former Timra teammate Sebastian Erixon, the Oilers’ first game of the rookie tournament in Penticton began with a moment of silence. Because this was also the 10th anniversary of the September 11th tragedy in New York, there was also a mention of those lost. This was such a solemn start to such excitement for so many hockey fans. The popularity of this tournament has grown so much so that fans didn’t have to watch grainy jumpy feeds online on their computers or streamed through their PS3s. Instead, this game was shown in all of its high definition glory on Sportsnet. Well for this game at least.

Olivier Roy got the start in the Oilers’ first game of the tournament. It seems as though the Oilers see Roy and Tyler Bunz as neck and neck in terms of who can be the up and coming Oilers’ goalie. Roy does have a few more games, experiences and years ahead of Bunz, but that may not matter. According to Bunz the two are good friends, but surely the competition between the two will only drive them to reach new levels in their games. Bunz did not see any game action this first game of the prospects tournament, but there are a few more games before the prospects return for their team’s NHL camps.

The best player on the ice, at least through the first two periods, was easily Ryan Nugent-Hopkins. RHN was all over the ice, making smart passes, taking shots and making jaws drop. Oilers fans who still aren’t sure what to think about this year’s first overall draft pick likely still aren’t convinced or sure, but with a game like this, Hopkins could put an extra “H” in the Oilers’ HOPE (Hall Omark Pääjärvi Eberle).

When talking about best players on the ice, one cannot leave out Anton Lander. There is little secret that I have a soft spot for the up and coming Swedes, but I see something in Lander that made this non-gambler, non-competitive gal make a $5 bet that Lander will play an NHL game by Christmas. You might find yourself wondering who would bet against me. I think this friend felt that he should be paying me back for my kindnesses and thought this easy bet would be a good start. Lander scored two goals in the second period, both on the power play. During the second intermission, Dan Tencer spoke with Lander “Lander all smiles after a great period. I told him about Paajarvi’s hat trick here last year. Lander says “I’m gonna beat him.”

Tambellini was proud of his prospects looking down from the pressbox. “To see some of the plays, RNH, Lander, Ryder, these type of players that are coming in. Very poised for young players.” Especially in the Oilers camp, a lot of attention in focused on Nugent-Hopkins, “I told Ryan to just go to camp, be yourself. We’re happy with you you are and as a hockey player… obviously he’s demonstrated some skill tonight.”

Of course there were several skilled young players on the ice, especially for the Oilers and their 7-2 finish. In terms of fights, they won some, they lost some. There is some concern over the health of Colten Tuebert after he lost his fight with Adam Polasek. Tuebert looked as though his nose could be broken. He will undoubtedly be assessed by medical staff, and the day off from play will surely do him good.

Although all prospects on both teams are playing to catch the attention of their NHL clubs, not all players are competing for a position on this year’s roster. For the Oilers, it is easy to know which players are most likely to crack the line-up, or are most hopeful to crack the line-up. Colten Tuebert is hoping that the thin blueline means that he may have a spot in the NHL this coming season and wearing the ‘C’ can’t hurt.

For a more detailed breakdown of goals and penalties, the Oilers’ webpage and Ryan Dittrick did an excellent job, while I multitasked. I have to say that it is such a joy to have game positives come so easily and also to say OILERS BEAT THE CANUCKS 7-2. As Terry Jones tweeted, ‘Remember when you turned on the TV and weren’t surprised to see the Oilers beating the Canucks 6-1?’ sorry Terry, I don’t but I sure look forward to those days.

Next up, the Oilers take on the Winnipeg Jets on Tuesday night at 8:30 MST. Hopefully by then I will have a better handle on who is wearing what number. I’m sure I will learn them in time for the tournament to end.

Revel in this win folks, the Oilers’ season is still questionable.  My call that the Oilers will at least make a push for the playoffs isn’t guaranteed, but I would love to be right on this one.

Filed in: NHL Teams, Edmonton Oilers, Lisa McRitchie, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: oilers+prospects



We watched this game and saw some mixed quality hockey—some highlights and some very obvious pre-and-early-season flubs. Overall the play was honest, earnest and fun to watch. I wish I could say the same about the commentary - awful.

Personal reminiscences and shameless name dropping running on through the play, very amateurish—should have been carried out with the intent of informing the watchers/fans of who was playing and under what number, their background and points to watch they brought them to this stage. I can’t say we got much more than undramatic rambling commentary, mostly away from the game play. Very disappointing if you were looking to see which of the prospects are “really” prospects at this time. Even Principe didn;‘t seem to have much to say.  Also a poorly promoted event - for TV at least.

Posted by Allan Hewitson from Kitimat, B.C. on 09/12/11 at 03:38 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

I agree with you on a lot of points. Unfortunately I wasn’t giving the game my full attention and so was trying to put names and numbers together and keep them that way. I wasn’t very successful aside from Lander and RNH. I can pick out several prospects just from how they skate, but in a game it can be different. The camera angles were quite different and when they switched, it often got difficult.

Definitely there were going to be some amateur mistakes with the players, I hope the play will improve as the butterflies start to fly off.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 09/12/11 at 04:11 PM ET


Living where I do I caught the internet feed and wasn’t lucky enough to have a TV feed, that said I’m very grateful to have had the opportunity to watch the game. All three OIlers centers ran the Canucks show, RNH with his great vision and passing, Lander with his mix of grit and skill, and Martindale with his size and skill. I had hoped that the Oilers would’ve taken a center with the 19th pick last year, however seeing Lander and Martindale I have high hopes that at least one of them becomes a staple down the middle for the Oilers. And maybe Tyler Pitlick might have a thing or two to say when it’s all said and done as well. The defense is coming together as well, a great mix of size, grit, and solid breakout passing. The only negative of the night was Teubert getting cranked with a huge right hand. Hopefully he’s fine and will be able to play later on in camp, I can only imagine his frustration of trying to make a good first impression and instead getting the short end of the stick.

Posted by Bryanbryoil from Hawaii on 09/12/11 at 06:00 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

News is that Tuebert has a broken nose (anything but a shock there) and they aren’t sure if he has a concussion or not.

I wanted to go on and on about Lander being the best player out there, but I’m trying to restrain myself, trying to show a little less bias. We’ll see.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 09/12/11 at 06:15 PM 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.

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