LMHF Report Webcast Link

3/26/10

Advisory - No Game Report

Hello again all,

Horrid timing at the end of the year. I'm headed to Calgary this weekend and will miss tonight's EDM vs. ANA game.

3/23/10

LMHF Game Report #38

EDMONTON 3

VS.

VANCOUVER 2
--------------------

First off, congrats to Nathan Deobald who becomes part of random hockey trivia lore subbing for Dubnyk as backup. Random thought: how hilarious would it have been if Szabados would have been the goalie she could have seen even a shift against VAN and we win? They'd never live that down.

It seemed like I hadn't been to a game in forever, so I was really wondering what the vibe around the team would be like. I'd say in the first 2 periods they were a fair bit more confident than I recall. The third was a little hit-and-miss but the team was physical throughout the game. The minor lineup changes we've made, while not really improving the squad (save for Johnson for Staios) have certainly made us more physical and we are not at all afraid to show it. This really makes a difference against a team like Vancouver, who will try to run you out of the building with cheap play. For once, we took the physicality and pestering back to them pretty well and weren't victimized by reffing. I'd have loved to have seen what Peckham would have done in tonight's game because I think it would've been damn fun to watch him pound on Glass, Kesler, Burrows or whichever moron wanted to donate their noggin for that beating.

Random celeb sighting - Miss Duff was reported to be in the building this evening. Hope she likes Edmonton. Might be a nice change of pace?

Anyway, on to the PLAYER REPORTS

-------------------

Arsene
- It's really too bad that this guy has probably topped out because if he were a young developing defenceman we'd have a lot to work with. He gives it his all every shift and managed 15 pretty decent minutes tonight. Though he looked utterly twitchy on the only 2-on-1 he faced (seriously, this was nearly Raffi-head-bob-worthy) and took an odd penalty (I believe the Canuck player had just broken his stick with a slash and the fact that the visible break came on a Canuck's back got him called) he played a pretty solid game, dishing out some hits and making a key shot block in the second period. I'd try to keep this guy around next year as the sturdy AHL-but-emergency-callup-ready guy in a pinch. But, could someone alert the Oilers stats guys that he doesn't weigh 295 pounds and take that off the scoreboard?

Johnson
- Not as good as I saw his first couple game in that he wasn't so good with the puck tonight, didn't get any effective shots through and got caught out of position a couple times. Not a bad game, far from it, just not as impressive as others.

Chorney
- I've noticed some people really slagging this guy lately. I have to admit I was a little perplexed in that he wasn't doing too terribly in many games I'd seen. Tonight he did indeed look that bad. Gone was the puck poise, skating and confident passing I'd seen before. He hit a couple times but not as effectively as other games. I didn't really see anything positive from him. Worstly...watching Chorney and Strudwick try to defend the behind the net play is like watching the merry-go-round-from-hell. Somehow no one is ever covered, they never have the pass taken away and it is just a mattter of time before a quality shot gets through unless they're bailed out by a forward or the opposition screws up. As a fellow defenceman, that was painful to watch!

Strudwick
- What I remember most is what I noted in the Chorney description; certainly not one of Strudwick's better games.

Gilbert-Whitney
- I group these two because unless our management acts like complete morons over the summer, I believe we're going to see them playing together as they did tonight next season. Then after next season, for several more. Watching these two as a unit on D is just excellent. Whitney hit someone when he needed to, got a glove in a face or two when he needed to, jumped into the play a couple times and was quite solid defensively, especially on a couple of key pick-offs in the slot. Gilbert's goal was ugly as sin, but good for him anyway. Aside from the one goal the pair was on for where Gilbert got twisted up, both were solid defensively and moved the puck well. I do believe these are our horses for the foreseeable future.

Deslauriers
- Another deserved first star. He made several sublime saves, including robbing Kyle Wellwood after he'd made half the team look stupid, and several others in the first and second. Make no mistake, we gave up plenty of quality scoring chances tonight. This was not our best defensive effort, especially down low. Deslauriers really didn't have a chance on either Canucks goal, held his team in and then preserved the win. The only thing you could criticize about him was that he was a little awkward at times, but he got the job done. He certainly won the one-on-one matchup between himself and Luongo, which is always the biggest key.

Stortini-Gagner-Comrie
- I must admit that I'm pretty perplexed by this line combination. If it is a ploy to get Gagner to work on his physical game it certainly worked in that I counted at least 5 hits for him tonight. That's impressive work. He wasn't too bad offensively either. Stortini stirred the pot a tad. I was mildly amazed that he didn't get in a couple fights until I remembered we were playing the Canucks. Stortini had a great moment where he nailed a Canucks player, the play continued, the puck came to him later and the Canucks player took a run only to miss and look like a goof. Lovely work Zack. I felt bad for Comrie in that his prime offensive chance game on a 3-on-1 rush with Stortini and Whitney. Comrie made a nice little move to save time and space in order to give the option to shoot or pass, passed to Whitney and had that shot blocked. He might've been able to score but Whitney had an open net as well. Quiet game from Mike otherwise.

Moreau-Horcoff-Pisani
- These guys did the job of keeping the offensive hounds at bay quite well I must say. They were positionally solid, kept the Canucks to the outside and managed to control the puck (more Horcoff and Pisani than Moreau) and worked hard on the PK. There were some warts...Horcoff left his man on Daniel Sedin's goal and got caught guarding no one and nothing. Big mistake that could have been prevented. Moreau could've taken a couple third period penalties but luckily got away with some more physical stuff (which to be fair the Canucks did as well) behind the opposition net. Fernando wasn't particularly dynamic, but got the job done.

Brule-Cogliano-Penner
- I don't really like this line. I don't see what the point is exactly. Penner remains unmotivated. He held off 2 or 3 Canucks to make solid offensive plays, but not with near gusto he had earlier this year. He also got a bang-bang chance in the second and a clear break in the third (possibly the first too) and had absolutely zero finish. Poor shot choice and poor execution. Cogliano had a decent game in that he skated quickly, made a great pass to set up Penner for a shoulda-been-goal and was positionally solid. He looked better than he has, but man was that goal ever bad. I started laughing immediately. Right place to be of course but that shot was crap! As for Mr. Brule, if we would have lost this one I would've hung the blame on him. You don't get a glorious chance in the third period to grab a 2 goal lead and the game very often, deke a top goalie out cold...then kindly deposit the puck onto his pad when you have the entire FREAKING net to shoot at. What was that?!?!?! I would have scored on that play. Unacceptable, unfocused and WEAK!

Nilsson-Pouliot-Potulny
- I didn't notice Nilsson aside from his goal, which I'm still trying to figure out. Did Luongo simply think he was going to pass and cheat? I was stunned that went in. Potulny was a little invisible too. He whiffed on a chance in the second, and was ignored while wide-open for the home run ball pass in the third (by Pouliot), but he didn't make any particular mistakes. I think he's getting out of place on the PP though, in that he's not getting the shooting chances he usually would. Was he the one who got burned so badly by Wellwood too? Pouliot was really solid defensively and held onto the puck at important times. Lots of patience and execution. Other than ignoring Potulny, I liked his game.
-------------------

I like to see Deslauriers win, because as I have noted here before, he's really working hard for it and deserves some positivity to end his season.

There are few better regular season feelings than sending Canuck fan home a Loooouuuu-SER! (guy had a great Vancouver colored shirt with a 1 on the back and Loooouuuu...sssseeerrrrsss!, awesome!)

3/21/10

Lack of Reports

Hello all, my apologies but due to shoddy internet this weekend I was unable to notify that I wouldn't be at the game Friday and will not be there tonight. Thus, no game reports. Reports resume Tuesday.

3/9/10

LMHF Game Report #35

EDMONTON 1

VS.

OTTAWA 4
---------------

...and with that our brief episode of winning ways comes to an end. Tonight wasn't like the games before the break though, in that you still felt for much of tonight's game that we had a chance to win.

The first period was both unique and entertaining. I'm not sure if you could hear it on tv/radio, but paper noisemakers were handed out before the game and they seemed to make a difference. These simple accordion-fold-style papers and back to back wins had the locals riled up for tonight's game.

In the first, our forwards passed up a storm. It was really nice to watch actually. Little plays that required a deft touch and great reads were happening with ease for the first ten minutes. For some reason we couldn't get anything on or in the net, but man did they ever make some nice passes.

Combine this, with the fact that Jeff Deslauriers played likely the best first half of a game I've seen an Oilers goalie play live. It was beautiful to watch. That man was locked on right in the middle of the zone and wouldn't let anyone else in. I thought he had another SO in him truthfully. He robbed Michalek from the slot, made an amazing reaction save off a bank off Chorney's skate, stopped Spezza in the slot then used superior size to cover up, then probably his best of the night was a stop off a Karlsson point shot and then stopping Fisher cold on an instant gimme rebound. It was amazing, he played ahead and his glove was already there when Fisher went to put it in, just brilliant. I agree he tailed off after the unfortunate first goal, but he gave his team every chance to win tonight. I think if Comrie scores on the penalty shot we win the game frankly.

It was a very interesting night for our defencemen. Chorney and Strudwick had very regrettable games, spending most of their time getting owned in behind the net and giving up scoring chances. It's unforunately that Chorney wasn't able to make more plays like the one I remember in the second; a simple play where instead of ripping the puck up the boards, he skated to the top of the circle, then banked the puck tactfully off the boards. That's the difference between a Strudwick, and someone who will be better than a 6/7. I remember on the goal during the 5-on-3, trying to figure out if Strudwick was doing his best fish out of water impression...that was an ugly sequence.

I really liked what Theo Peckham was able to do tonight, because he went at Tuomo Ruutu and wasn't goaded. He stuck with it and made an effective game out of it. The only thing I wish he'd done in addition is run some OTT star player on the shift he took while Ruutu was serving his stupid penalty. That woulda been the icing on the cake.

Speaking of mean bastards, take a look at Ryan Whitney. In addition to gliding up the ice with the greatest of ease and patiently stickhandling through traffic without even the slightest hint of danger (the play I remember was in the second, but there were others too), he also gets in people's faces and dishes out some rough stuff. This guy is looking more and more useful after 3 games. He also got himself back into position every time he got caught, often breaking up the play with remarkable ease. Lovely watching him play.

His partner Gilbert looked excellent too. He led us in minutes tonight and was responsible for seeing and hitting Comrie in-stride to generate the penalty shot. He ran the point like a true offensive defenceman and kept things simple otherwise. Well done.

As for Aaron Johnson; here's what I've been able to see him do in his first three games, but specifically tonight:
- He doesn't get beat wide
- He skates well backwards
- He gets shots on net
- He hits people and gets in their way
- He doesn't make stupid, panicked puck plays
If we were looked for a description of "prototype #5/6 defenceman, that's it right there. I think he might have just needed the kind of shot we're giving him. He's certainly on the SIGN list right now.

At forward the stories were less inspiring. Aside from the beginning of the game as I noted, we weren't very effective at all. No shots and no real chances.

O'Sullivan being out will further detract from the entertainment value for me. Even when he's not great, he'll usually do something worth watching.

I expected Stortini to get something done against an ornery OTT team, especially after last game but he came up short tonight. The "fight" was pretty weak and he could have saved that effort for another time. He also didn't make the offensive effort he did last game.

Comrie wasn't as good as he'd been the last two. He still got into some smart spots including generating the penalty shot, but not near as effective. We did seem to go downhill after he essentially stopped playing for a while in the third. That likely had more to do with PKs.

Potulny sure got a whack of icetime tonight. I see that he was winning faceoffs, but other than that it looked to me as though he was spending his time getting hit. Not exactly what our designated shooter needs to be doing.

I liked what Brule brought tonight a lot; and especially in the second. He rose to the occasion of a physical game by doing a lot of hitting. It's always good to see him be effective like that. Not much in the way of scoring opps.

Cogliano got a great offensive chance due to speed an positioning, then promptly threw the puck high and wide. Andy can't buy one this year folks. It's got to be frustrating for him.

Pouliot I noticed less than usual. On the PK he was doing alright as he seemed to always be around the puck, but I didn't notice him at all in the offensive corners.

Nilsson got knocked around badly. He's just not as solid on his feet as guys like Comrie and Potulny. This severely limits his effectiveness against a team like OTT.

Gagner made a really nice offensive play in the second that could have resulted in a goal, faking past an OTT defender then taking a solid shot. I wish he was a better shooter because he sure gets into position with the puck enough. I hope he works hard on that this summer. He also got our first shot, when we were making all those passes and getting nothing. Unfortunately, it was a nothing shot. Oh well.

Penner-Horcoff-Penner were largely as advertised plus 1 goal. They did a decent enough job on Alfie-Spezza-Michalek (right?), Penner was what I'd describe as medium-lazy. Horcoff was pretty solid in the defensive end, but did have 2 ugly giveaway passes and 2 missed passes from teammates that really stuck out for me.
----------

That loss combined with a Toronto win puts us firmly back into the Hall/Seguin lead. It's horribly sad that's all we have to look forward to in a year that should have included playoffs, but at least next year we'll (likely) get to watch the guy who will next score 50 goals for the Oilers (we hope, some point down the road).

3/7/10

LMHF Game Report #34

EDMONTON 2

VS.

NEW JERSEY 0
-----------------

Judging by my experiences so far this year, the east must really stink.

I was unimpressed by Washington's supporting cast when they rolled into town, and somewhat underwhelmed by Pittsburgh's already. Now New Jersey comes to town and lays an absolute stinker. It wasn't even much of a challenge beating those guys tonight.

The only guy that threatened was Kovalchuk. He looked dangerous and got some shots off, including a breakaway chance in the third, but no one else really did anything. Parise looked pissed off more than anything...Langenbrunner went to the net...Elias went to the box...I dunno. The Devils D is hurting. I didn't recognize most of them and they didn't really accomplish anything with the puck. The amount of cross-crease passes they allowed was rather inexcusable.

As for our guys, generally the effort seemed to be there. We were committed to defending and did a solid job of keeping craziness away from Deslauriers save for a few minor scrambles and the Kovalchuk play noted above. It wasn't as if we gave an insane effort, but this one could've gotten borderline out of hand if it weren't for Brodeur. Our passing game generated some really solid chances that we didn't cash, but this was one of the more secure 2-0 wins you'll ever see. For more detail, on to PLAYER REPORTS
-----------------

Deslauriers
- Excellent tonight. Simply flawless. He looked in control and steady at every turn. He wasn't under heavy fire really, but turned away the one key chance that probably secured the game (Kovalchuk on the breakaway tried to beat him five hole and didn't come close). One of the reasons I still love to see this team win at home is that Jeff has worked hard this year and brings a focused attitude to every start. He's earned nights like tonight.

Whitney
- Last game I wasn't totally sold on Whitney, but tonight I really liked what he did. Between he and Gilbert, a lot of ice is covered and it is rather difficult to get anything going. Even though Whitney isn't physical, he uses his body well in positioning, controls the puck when he gets it, and seems to be a bit of an ornery SOB as evidenced by his confrontation with Andrew Peters at the end of the game where he was clearly under Peters' skin and not backing down an inch. He and Smid, plus maybe one more guy of this type, would make a tough group to play against to compliment our more offensive guys. One specific play stood out for me from Whitney tonight; in the first, I believe before the 10 minute mark, he skated to the neighbourhood of our own blue line, made a great pass to a forward gaining entry to the zone, skated into the slot and made the forward aware he was open for the pass, took it perfectly, then faked the shot and held the puck rather than taking a harmless wrister, skated around behind the net and got it out front, I believe to Potulny (?) for a great chance. That's the kind of play the really good ones make. It impressed the hell out of me. He was good everywhere tonight and led us in minutes again. If the foot thing is at all overblown, and this is a sign of things to come, maybe there's an upside here.

Gilbert
- I can honestly see the Whitney acquisition as possibly being in order to get the perfect partner for Gilbert. They're both giants even if they don't roam around crushing people, and Whitney's presence and solid skating allows Gilbert to play a freer offensive game than some of the other guys we have. I enjoy watching him play this game. He's at home on the offensive point again, and looks solid on the PP with Whitney as well. Perhaps a Gilbert-clone-type wasn't a bad idea?

Strudwick
- I didn't really notice him much, which is usually a good thing. I don't recall him being caught or whacking too many pucks carelessly up the boards, so that's good.

Chorney
- Solid night for Taylor. I liked the way he skated with and moved the puck, while also playing fairly solid D. The one thing I'm worried about is that I still didn't see anything spectacular in the offensive end from him. If he's going to contribute, we need some of that.

Peckham
- Quieter night than last for Theo and I think that's his ideal way to play. He needs to realize it's better for him to be the hammer reserved for necessary poundings than the agitator. We don't really need a defensive agitator. Very little in the way of mistakes.

Johnson
- If he keeps up this play, I'm signing him in the offseason as 6/7 guy. He's been better than Staios was certainly. The biggest thing I notice is that he's a decent skater (doesn't get beat going back into his own end), positions himself well, and makes decent decisions with the puck. Is there something we're missing that's wrong with this guy or are the extra 7 shifts he's getting here making him a better player? I was always a better defender when my play jumped from 15-17/game to 23-27/game, maybe it's true with these guys too.

Stortini
- I think this was one of his more effective games in a while. He was annoying the heck out of the Devils. That's his job. He also skated well into the offensive zone and went to the puck. He also flubbed a chance Comrie gave him in front of the net, and couldn't corral a 2-on-1 pass from Horcoff (it wasn't a great pass) when he should have scored, but I didn't expect him to make an amazing play. He hasn't had this kind of game in a while by my eye and he needs to if he wants to keep his job.

Comrie
- I counted about 5 passes he made to the front of the net that could have resulted in Oilers goals. He was consistently offensively effective and didn't turn the puck over at all. Just the kind of game he needs to play. He got the puck to O'Sullivan, Potulny and Stortini, 2 of whom should certainly have finished his passes and didn't. That was disappointing, but didn't take away from the positive nature of his game. There was a pass in the first that he made right through Colin White that was just sublime. Gotta keep him next year. He's consistent at least.

Potulny
- He was getting to all the right places, the puck was getting to his stick, but there was no finish. Perhaps he's having confidence issues right now, because he would've scored on these earlier this year. Positionally solid, and skated well. Can't complain about the basics, but he needed to score.

Penner
- There were 2 or 3 shifts tonight where he looked right. What I mean by looked right is that he entered the zone intent on going to the net, took one hand off his stick an bulled his way. He didn't finish and there wasn't quite the drive he sometimes shows, but it was better than he's been lately. I didn't see anything great in the other ends of the ice.

Horcoff
- He got better as the game went on. Early, he was skating to strange places, shooting badly and giving the puck away. In the second, he picked his game up a touch, but seriously botched a great chance in the slot. In the third, other than the badly executed pass to Stortini (Horcoff can't do saucer passes), he was solid. He nearly tipped a nice one in after making a really solid zone entry play and was generally effective. In the defensive zone he was good.

Pisani
- I didn't notice Fernando much other than him receiving a couple passes and getting the puck in deep. I suspect he was trying to get back into the swing of things, but I hope Fernando spends the rest of season essentially recovering so that he's worth a bargain deal next year. Comrie-Potulny-Pisani works.

Nilsson
- He made a really solid extra effort play to get the puck to Pouliot for his goal. I guess there were a couple other moments when he did some fairly nice things, but he generally didn't impress me. He needs to want the puck more, essentially.

Pouliot
- His goal was interesting. He took a really solid shot on the rush and beat a goalie who was playing quite well. It was a bit of a slow release, but that combined with the far-behind angle likely helped it go in. It's hard to take advantage of the skill to do this on a more regular basis would be my only concern, as getting this much room on a rush is difficult. He was decent enough with the puck and played the positional game he knows well.

Gagner
- Looked like he made a pretty solid play on the wall to set up Nilsson prior to the Pouliot goal, which was good to see. I'm not a big fan of him playing on a line with these two as I'm not sure it really accomplishes anything, but at least they got the goal and didn't really give anything up.

O'Sullivan
- Got a couple really good chances, including in front of Brodeur in the second and a similar chance in close in period three. It looked like he landed a couple of hits, which was refreshing.

Brule
- Certainly a nice goal, but I'm not sure I saw much besides that. He got knocked over by Parise a couple times, which was surprising.

Cogliano
- Again, I didn't see much. He had some excellent shifts in the second where he played with speed and tried to hit a few people. I wish he'd play more like this.

----------------

My 3 Oilers Stars

1. Deslauriers
2. Whitney
3. Comrie
---------------

Apparently we haven't lost to the Devils at home since 1995. Don't we have a similar streak in the opposite direction against Ottawa? Eeep!

3/5/10

LMHF Game Report #33

EDMONTON 2

VS.

MINNESOTA 1
-----------------

Certainly not as great to be back as some of the other breaks I've had from hockey life in Rexall, but still nice to get back to what I'd call normalcy.

Tonight of course was fan appreciation night. We never win on fan appreciation night, so tonight's result was a little freaky.

The standard giveaways were all there as usual; though it seemed like they actually did less of them.

Everyone received their obligatory free popcorn, which now appears to be cineplex popcorn. It comes in a bag (not handy on the floor at Rexall) and is tastier than before in my estimation. They also appear to heat the butter now, as opposed to squirting whatever yellow semi-gelatinous goo from a bottle as they did before. Certainly a positive.

On to the hockey game; with most of the focus being on the new players that none of us had seen live at home yet.

Minnesota for their part didn't look interested at all. I'm not sure I noticed anyone really except for Owen Nolan and that's just because he's a jerk and you expect him to score on us. They didn't look like they'd beat us tonight.

I wouldn't say our team was rusty, but they certainly looked to be slow. Also, they seemed to be lining three players up at the blue line a bunch. I'm not sure what the point of trapping would be at this stage, but we might have been doing it for a bunch of the game tonight.

On to the PLAYER REPORTS

-------------------

Deslauriers
- Definitely our star of the game. He's one of the few guys who you can see really wants to win still. He lept in the air after the clinching save and glove-slapped a Minny player who tried to give him the business late. This is one guy who knows his job is on the line, and I personally think he's doing just fine. He wasn't really "under fire" in this game but he made some utterly stupendous saves that were really a treat. I enjoyed the puck-flick he made in the third while lying outstretched to play the puck away from danger myself. I didn't like the goal he allowed; it was really weak, but other than that he was pretty perfect.

Johnson
- Seems like he comes from the plain school of effective defencemen. That's fine with me I guess. He looked a little tentative but at least he didn't spend all his time ripping the puck up the boards. Will be interesting to see if he's able to warrant consideration as next year's #7.

Peckham
- I could contemplate for the rest of my days exactly how Theo Peckham was judged to be second star tonight. I don't think I'd ever figure it out. He took two penalties and probably could have received six. He didn't do any of the things that make him particular effective (physical punishment in D zone, solid blue line play in the O) and yet he was still judged to have been the best skater on the ice? Really?!?!?

Strudwick
- Ummm...he didn't screw up bad enough that we lost for once?

Chorney
- I see almost the same thing every time I watch Chorney play to be honest. He's solid when skating with the puck, and I expect him to get smacked around by the opposition and it just doesn't happen. Good to see. Maybe he can step up offensive for the rest of the year. Might as well give him every chance.

Gilbert
- I like watching Tom when he's in a more featured offensive role. He looked really good controlling the puck on the opposition blue line tonight. I liked the way he skated and controlled his defensive area. We should see a fairly solid rest of the season from him.

Whitney
- I was very interested in seeing this guy play. My initial impressions were that he had limited footspeed, was slightly ornery after the whistle but not so much during the play, and was really trying to figure out where to go and what to do tonight. I see potential; it's clear he can skate with the puck and stickhandle pretty well as he did a couple times tonight. It's also clear he can pass as he nearly sprung a couple of different guys on breakaways. What is not clear at all is whether he will hit when required, if he has any puck-separation skills at all, and if he can make that extra offensive stride to create rather than merely support the offence. Lots of things to watch. I hope he's passionate about his game next year. He looks like a guy you wouldn't want to see motivated if you were the opposition. Didn't see any elite offensive signs. WEAK effort getting back on the Latendresse goal. Looked to be coasting.

Jones
- Well, he got his knee whacked, took a penalty, and would have scored a goal if he'd just been able to hold his ground. He's a very awkward looking player. I'll give him some more chances of course to form a general look, but the first one didn't impress me.

Comrie
- Aside from approximately 5 offensive zone giveaways (which to be fair came without puck support while trying to make a play) I thought he was pretty solid. At least he wants the puck and will get it to the net still, unlike a bunch of our forwards. I liked his goal because it was a solid wrap from good positioning done with speed. It wasn't all that lucky. He got off a couple of shots that could have been goals as well. He suffered a bit from what I thought was an off game from Potulny despite solid effort. Very nice SO winner, getting Backstrom moving sideways then sliding the puck in against that movement. He's one of the few that seems to consistently move the goalie, which is SO key.

Potulny
- Like I said, Ryan seemed to have an off game despite the effort being there. He just wasn't quite in the right position and missed some chances he usually doesn't where the puck popped out to him. Go check out his SO goal though, seriously it was SICK.

Penner
- Totally disinterested. He did a lot of nothing and missed a really solid breakaway pass. Brutal.

Nilsson
- I noticed him 4 or 5 times when he got the puck and that was pretty much it. He wasn't getting to the right positions.

Horcoff
- Again, I barely noticed him aside from the miss by the side of the net in the third off a nice slap-pass from Gilbert and some defensive zone stuff. He didn't seem to do anything really and got OWNED on the dot.

Brule
- Got robbed cold on a great 2-on-1 chance I expected him to just nail. He looked a little out of it tonight. No big shots so he didn't do what he's most effective at. Also a game where some physicality would have been useful and I didn't see it.

Stortini
- One of his most solid offensive efforts in a long time. I could have done without the glove-slap-fight with Hnidy though, as that was effing weak. He shoulda dropped the gloves a couple times tonight.

Pouliot
- Not a bad game. He was really solid on the puck in the neutral zone and made some nice moves but couldn't seem to translate that into offensive zone effectiveness.

Cogliano
- Couldn't do a bloody thing with the puck despite getting it a lot of the time. He'd get it, take 5 strides and turn it over. Every time. No shooting to speak of. I'm not sure what's happened to his offensive game, really. Knocked over Boogaard though, which is always a huge plus.

O'Sullivan
- Disappointing in that he got several offensive chances and couldn't convert. Good that he was creating those chances I suppose. My hopes for him rest on him sticking around til next season though as we don't get to see much at all of his rounded game this year. Oh well.

Gagner
- Not impressed as he really wasn't able to get anything going in a game he could've taken over. Linemates might have something to do with that but he needs to be better than this. Oh well.
-------------------

My Oilers Stars

1. Deslauriers
2. Comrie
3. Gilbert

Really looking forward to NJ on Sunday!