Oilers beat Avalanche 4-1
After their worst game this season, the Oilers went back to basics and focused on the simple things on their off day. The results, a much anticipated victory against a division rival. Certain players stepped up, while others have remained invisible, but overall this game was a vast improvement over the last.
Andy Sutton was the first Oiler to receive a suspension in recent memory. It had been over ten years since an Oiler had been suspended when Sutton was suspended November 1st for five games after his hit on Gabriel Landeskog. Following a hit on Carolina Hurricanes’ Alexei Ponikarovsky, Sutton has been suspended indefinitely and has been given the option of an in person meeting. If the in person meeting, a chance to maybe explain himself doesn’t sound like a lengthy suspension is on it’s way, the fact that Sutton will now be considered a repeat offender should.
This was a rare start for Devan Dubnyk. Of course this is not due to poor play overall by Dubnyk, but rather that Nikolai Khabibulin is playing better hockey than he ever has as an Oiler. Unfortunately, Dubnyk is drawing the worst games even though on paper they may have been the easiest. The Carolina Hurricanes are last in the east and had just played in Calgary the night before. That sounds like an Oilers win.
Linus Omark is a very interesting player. When he first came to the Oilers he wasn’t nearly as young as the other NHL rookies he was playing with; Omark was a 23 year old man. Omark was also well known in Sweden for his shootouts and general play. When Omark came to the Oilers, he was an unknown and although many fans adore the feisty winger who is hard to shake when he has the puck, his defensive play has been called into question. Omark was sat in the pressbox for more games than he played with the Oilers this season before finally/eventually being sent down to the AHL.
This morning I found an interesting article on Omark. Since it was written in Omark’s native tongue Swedish, I started turning to my friends who speak both English and Swedish and lucked out that Yngve Elverhøi of Norway was able to lend me his talents. What follows is an article that doesn’t bode well for Oiler Omark fans.
Change can be difficult for anyone and everyone, especially where money is involved. And the NHL is big money.
The NHL Board of Governors met yesterday to discuss potential realignment scenarios to reflect the move of the Atlanta Thrashers to Winnipeg and the possible relocation of the Phoenix Coyotes. Although the NHL is still committed to making the Phoenix Coyotes work, they need to be prepared for the possibility that the team will need to be moved, that Glendale will no longer be able and or willing to cover losses.
This Sunday was the annual Calgary Hitmen Teddy Bear Toss and although I was not able to attend, I wanted to take a look at the event. The Teddy Bear toss is exactly what it sounds like; a toy drive for the Alberta Children’s Hospital, and it is quite successful. Last year, fans threw 23, 096 stuffed toys onto the ice following the Hitmen’s first goal of the night. This year, the 17th running, that total was 25, 303.
Edmonton Oilers’ Swedish prospect Oscar Klefbom has had a less than ideal season so far. In September Klefbom suffered a cut to his thigh and subsequently a leg infection. Most recently, Klefbom suffered a concussion. Recently however, November 24th, Klefbom was able to return to his Swedish Elite Team (SEL) Färjestad BK. Should Klefbom remain healthy for the next month, we will be able to see Klefbom represent his country at the World Juniors tournament in Calgary.
If you were to ask most Oiler fans who their favourite Oiler is, you will likely hear the name Ryan Smyth. If you also ask who they think the team MVP is the answer would likely be the same; Ryan Smyth. In Edmonton people love Ryan Smyth the way Canucks fans love Trevor Linden and Leafs’ fans love Wendel Clark.
Although Ryan Smyth has only been invited to one NHL All Stars game in his life in 2007, Smyth has played for his country on numerous occasions. Smyth was a member of several gold medal winning Team Canadas; World Juniors team in 1995, Winter Olympics Team Canada in 2002, the 2004 World Cup, and the 2003 and 2004 World Championships as well as winning silver in the 2005 World Championships. Smyth is also commonly known not just in Edmonton, but across the country as Captain Canada.
Oilers lose 5-3 to Flames
I don’t know how (but I have a good idea) the Edmonton Oilers could start a game with a 2-0 lead and end up losing by two goals. Not only that, this loss was as bad as they come for Oiler fans, this was a game against the Calgary Flames.
Oilers beat Blue Jackets 6-3
“They don’t ask how, it’s just how many” Ryan Jones reminded Sportsnet’s Gene Principe following his first multiple goal night in the NHL. Remarkably, Jones also earned his first hat-trick in a game that also saw scoring from defenceman Ladislav Smid.
About Oil Patch
Lisa McRitchie is a fairly new writer, online at least, but makes up for inexperience with passion for the game of hockey and memories of Mrs. Leskiw’s English AP class; who knew they would pay off one day.
Oil Patch focuses on the Edmonton Oilers, the Edmonton Oil Kings, The Oklahoma City Barons and Team Canada Hockey with game coverage, news updates, speculation and interviews.
Although the Oilers have had a difficult past decade… or three, here at Oil Patch, the future looks bright.
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