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Worst vs First, Results as Expected

Oilers lose 6-3 to the Bruins
The excitement for this game seemed to surround the Taylor-Tyler comparison, and the fact that Tyler Seguin made himself unavailable to the media today only fuelled the fire. Unfortunately, not many Oilers fans could imagine a win coming out of this game. The last time the Oilers won in Boston was 15 years and 3 days ago. Yup, November 7th, 1996 was the last time the Oilers walked away from Boston Gardens with a win.

The last place team getting doubled up by the first place team from last year didn’t seem like a bad way to walk away from this one. This team was touted mere months ago as the big bad Bruins who won the Stanley Cup, and the Oilers even as much as a month ago were supposed to be another bottom feeding team.

Ryan Smyth nearly had a hat-trick on the evening; this was the shining light in the Oilers game. Smyth’s goals, as usual came from inches away from the net, deflections and tip ins but goals that Smyth has made a name for himself scoring. That the Oilers’ were able to bring Smyth back to the Oilers to score these goals and to mentor the youth was easily one of the easiest and best decisions the team made in the offseason. How interesting that tonight was also Colin Fraser’s debut as a King.

Devan Dubnyk had anything but his best night. Yes, a few of the 6 goals could be attributed to bad bounces, but overall this did not look like the goalie whose numbers have also been excellent to start this year, but had been slightly overshadowed by Nikolai Khabibulin.
The Oilers play back to back games and tomorrow night is against the Red Wings. Khabibulin will likely get the nod for that game.

This game was the fifth and final game of Andy Sutton’s suspension. That means, that Sutton can return to the lineup tomorrow and maybe after tonight it will be Cam Barker sitting out. I wanted to be very excited about another first round pick joining the Oilers, but I had seen Barker play with the Wild, and I had definitely heard what I had been told by Wild fans. Barker thus far hadn’t impressed me, but after this game has really disappointed me. The final Oilers penalty of the game was the result of a really selfish Barker play, and just as his team was battling back once again, that doesn’t help to make a man more popular let alone this man.

After this game, I wouldn’t be surprised to see Renney try to make a few changes. Magnus Paajarvi has spent the last two games watching from the pressbox and should draw back into the lineup tomorrow. I have a list of players that I wouldn’t mind see sit out in his stead, even if it is a short list. Perhaps it will be Ben Eager, someone who has only made six hits in his past six games, and none in his last two.

Although this was a loss, and a game where the seemingly tight Oilers’ defence has allowed more goals in one game than they have in their last four games, the team battled and competed, pushing to come back from each hole they found themselves in. Once the Oilers were down by two in the first period, I just hoped to come out of this game down by less than five.  Thankfully the Oilers wanted a better result than that, and two goals in 29 seconds made it a game again.

The fact that the Oilers are now 2-2 on this six game road trip is a positive to start with. We all knew that there was no way that the Oilers could take all six. I was hoping that the Oilers could take this one. After all, I’m off to the 20th anniversary show of Calgary’s own Chixdiggit. Surprisingly enough, the lead singer K.J. Jansen is a huge Oilers fan; I’m sure that a win would have made his night.

 

Filed in: Edmonton Oilers, Ben Eager, Magnus Pääjärvi, Ryan Smyth, | Oil Patch | Permalink
 

Comments

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We were in there until the very end despite shoddy goaltending. I’m wondering how much longer Gagner’s leash is with the organization?

Posted by Bryanbryoil from Hawaii on 11/11/11 at 03:58 PM ET

Lisa Brown's avatar

Everyone close to the team keeps saying things like “he’s so much better than that,” “he’s offensive,” and “he’s a natural centre and so is struggling on the wing.”

When I hear comments like that it makes me think the leash is very, very long.

Posted by Lisa Brown on 11/11/11 at 07:05 PM ET

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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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