Monday, December 19, 2005


Man Bites Dog (Battle of Alberta Edition) [updated]

First Mike Peca scores an OT winner on an undeniably sweet move, and now Terry Jones has written a column that hits the nail on the head (tomorrow: sun rises in West?).

Recall the Paul Reinhart quote I dredged up before the 1st installment of this season's BofA:
"...We could fool ourselves and say we're trying to catch the Washington Capitals, but that's not what we're trying to do. We're trying to catch Edmonton. They're the mark we compare ourselves to. When all is said and done, that's what it comes down to; all the trades, all the talk, everything we do."

Now here's Jones today, and my, the worm has turned...
Since Sutter took over and made beating Edmonton Job No. 1, MacTavish has only one win in 13 games in regulation time - a grand total of three wins if you count overtime and shootouts in which the Flames have emerged with a point of their own.

With an 11-7-0-2 on the road and 6-1-1-2 record in their last 10, the Oilers have managed to get at least a point every game so far this month.

But that doesn't fool anybody around here.

To reach for the top, first you have to top the Flames. That hasn't happened yet.

Not in regulation.

No, it hasn't, has it. The last time the Oil beat the Flames in regulation (March 11, 2003), Chretien was Prime Minister. The Ring was the #1 DVD rental (the first one, before the sequel). CSI was the hot new show (the first one, before the spin-offs).

The Oilers are a solid 7-1-3 in their past 11; the Flames are a fantastic 15-2-2 in their past 19. This is their 1st meeting at Reachall this season; their three previous encounters were at the Saddledome. I'm really hoping for a nasty game and some lazy refs; the pregame chatter from both teams this season has been far too calm and respectful. It's time for these guys to get mad at each other.

This day in history: Jarome Iginla (and Corey Millen) were traded for Joe Nieuwendyk, ten years ago. I think he marks the occasion with a suitably excellent performance. Amonte should be good too: he'll either be celebrating his selection to the U.S. Olympic team, or cramming the snub into Team America's ear.

Oiler futility extends until at least New Year's Eve, thanks to a 3-2 Calgary win tonight. Go Flames.

[update - Oilers perspective]

Rather than throwing up another Game Day thread, I'll just drop some science here.

First, I agree with Jones, Matt, and everyone else who says that we really need to start beating the Flames. This is a huge game and, suprise, suprise, I think the Oil are going to pull it off. The Flames have had their time in the sandbox, but it's time for the big kids to move back in.

The team, when they aren't knocking out each others teeth, really does seem to have some confidence now. Moreau's a freight train, Peca's cracked the seal, Hemsky is on another level, even when Pronger is bad he is good, RPM is looking great . . . it just goes on and on. The only down side is that D-Vo is on IR and Kolanos got picked up again by Phoenix - huh? Why exactly did they waive him in the first place? Why did we ever take him? Does this smell fishy to anyone else?

Bottom line, it all comes down to goaltending. If they can beat Kipper then the Flames have nothing. Nothing. Likewise, if we don't get some stability between the pipes tonight we are in trouble.

Eric Furlatt & Mick McGeough are on the whistle.


Science! What a clown (sorry, "Dr. Clown"). Apparently Peca's big goal (and mouth-bleeding) has him working his way back into Oil fan's good books. Whatever: if Peca wants to play tonight like he did Saturday, then on balance, I think I'll take it.

All he's got to do is be on the ice for two goals by the Iginla line, then take a dumb penalty to give us a 90-second 5-on-3 late in the 3rd period. Yeah, I could live with that.

Hey, Peca's never been in my bad books. I have always been happy with his play. Three straight games Naslund is a nobody - look for the same from Iggy tonight.

Post a Comment

<< Home

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?