Tuesday, January 15, 2008


It's Baltimore. No one lives forever.

Anyone else catch the first couple episodes of Season 5 of The Wire? Shiiiiit. My mind has been blown. Repeatedly. Jimmy? Cmon, Jimmy. Avon? WHAT? No way. I don't believe it. The newspaper angle has been fantastic, though it's not getting the same amount of focus as the port did in Season 2. I guess that's what happens when HBO only gives you ten episodes to work with. Bastards. Has any network abandoned good television as quickly as HBO has in the past couple seasons? Sex and the City and the Sopranos died of natural causes, but the network intentionally harpooned Deadwood, Rome and The Wire. Shameful. Here's a couple of interesting articles on the The Wire, for any who are interested. One's an interview with show creator David Simon by writer Nick Hornby. The other is from the New York Times, and examines what real criminals think of the show.

The Oilers next six games are against Los Angeles, Washington, Carolina, Atlanta, Tampa Bay and Florida. That's six winnable hockey games. The team is relatively healthy, the goalie is hot, and the defence hasn't been too shabby. Throw in the fact that Colorado is without Sakic and Smyth for an extended period of time, and that the Leafs will soon hire Cliff Fletcher to pull off a trade sending Sundin to the Flames for Tanguay and parts, and the Oilers time to move up the WC ladder is now. Will that escalation occur? Never know with this team. But they won't be able to make excuses if they choke on these twelve points, that's for sure.

Cosh has very interesting post up examining the possible impact the shootout is having on regulation-time tactics. His argument is that giving a team a penalty shot rather than a clean breakaway can be the smarter, more mathematically sound, play. I think he gives too much credence to Sheldon Souray's calculating abilities, myself, and he leaves out the fact that teams can also be given a powerplay in addition to the penalty shot (or that the offending player can be tossed from the game, both of which happened in the Phoenix game he references), but it is an interesting argument. If it isn't something the Oilers and other teams are considering, it probably should be.

Of course tonight's game is on PPV. Had to be. No way I'd get to watch my team go for five straight without coughing up an additional chunk of change. Grrr.

Prediction: 3-1, Oil. Pitkanen, Penner, and Hemsky with the most exciting play in hockey, Principe does a story that involves roommates and Warren Beatty lighting during one of the intermissions.


***Update*** Just saw this Ross McKeon piece on Yahoo!. It's a good idea, going through all the teams and identifying who needs to be signed in the off-season. But then I look at what McKeon says about the Oilers, and I just shake my head.

"Ah, where all the trouble started. Funny thing is: Mr. Lowe doesn't have a lot of pressing contractual problems since those who are up are pretty replaceable. The best argument is for RFA Jarret Stoll, the 25-year-old who isn't having a great season but figures to be part of the future. Otherwise, there's the thought of extending Shawn Horcoff, 29, but he's not tearing it up either."

Here's hoping that every GM in the league other than Kevin Lowe is a big McKeon fan. As for Lowe, his 1A and 1B signing priorities should Tom Gilbert and Joni Pitkanen. That Horcoff guy has been playing just fine, btw. Don't feel bad about extending his deal a couple years.


I was already worried about the Kings game tonight, and how I see that even the FANS are looking past this one.

With even Andy Grabia focused on the easy pickings of the coming roadtrip, I'm more convinced than ever that the Oil will lose tonight.

I blame Milch for losing Deadwood. If it wasn't for his decision to pursue JFC they could have wrapped the series up comfortably in another season or two. But, no he just had to go on some weird existential surfer tangent.

This has classic 1-4 season-killing road trip written all over it. I am filled with fear.


I was waiting for you to post on this!

Check out this article in the Post.

The quote they attribute to Jimmy was actually Daniels. Outstanding journalism!

With even Andy Grabia focused on the easy pickings of the coming roadtrip, I'm more convinced than ever that the Oil will lose tonight

I am SO not looking past this. I'm actually terrified. My point was simply that they SHOULD win a bunch of these games, and won't have any good excuses if they don't. But that means they will likely go 2-3-1. I agree with LB and you completely. I always expect the worst to happen with my sports teams.

That Post article sucks. Check out The Believer one with Simon. His point about the Shakespearean versus the Greek world-view are spot on.

Center Ice has a free preview on until the 16th. Tonight's game looks like it will be available on Shaw channel 288. Regional blackout probably screws those living in Edmonton, but for us unfortunate fans living in Calgary (or worse TO) it should save some $$$ for more beer.

The more I read of Simon, the less I like him. Seriously. Maybe it's overexposure because I've been with the show since the middle of season one and I've gone from finding it hard to find something about the show's creators even when Googling it, to now not being able to turn around without seeing a story.

Also, it doesn't help that Bill Simmons acts like he discovered the show. I still read the sports guy out of habit but he's jumped the shark awhile back and when you see the wire mentioned by the same guy that hated the ending of no country for old men, you have to wonder what is is Simmons is getting out of it.

Anyway, as for the season, Clark Johnson is killing me as the newspaperman. It's great. And as soon as I saw Chris Partlow looking up Sergei, I was all in. S2 was my favourite season and knowing that The Greek and Vondas will return makes me pine for Sunday nights.

As for the Oil, they need to go 4-1-1 in the next six before the break. Nothing else will do in terms of us grabbing 9 or 10 and making Burke's scouting staff have to work a little more.

I'm disappointed that you aren't dropping the bones for tonight's PP, AG. As I said over at The Staples Centre, ie Lain's blog:), with the Oilers on a roll, Gene and Co should be at their chest puffing "best" tonight.

If you're in PPV area, Centre Ice is blacked out. So no dice on the Centre Ice angle for all of AB, SK, MB, NT, and NU. TO though?...they're in for free. Then again, they actually have to live there. :)

As I said over at The Staples Centre, ie Lain's blog:)

That was hilarious. I think the Oil may get my cash tonight. They better not screw it up!

Augustus is fantastic, but I'm still all about Bunk, Omar and Lester. I can't wait to see Omar and Marlo go toe-to-toe. And isn't the Bubbles storyline great so far?

Yeah, Bubs is pretty close to slipping back into the life, I think. I did read Simon saying;) that one of the characters will get a happy ending and I think most people will root for Bubs. I mean, fuck, any man that can elict sympathy from Landsman is a guy that must have some serious merit, right?:) But, when Bubs got up to speak and started every story with, "I used to love to get high" before telling all his stories, the thing I got from it was that Bubs would still "love to get high." Personally, I hope that it's Dookie that manages to escape. Mike took him off the corner and gave him, as Dookie called it, "Nanny" duty.

Most of the people who write for Yahoo! Sports are boneheads. Its been a long time since I read a decent NHL related post on that site.

Dennis, did you see the McKeon article I just linked to on the main page of this post?

Man, Dookie deserves to get out. Chris and Bubbles, too. I don't think it's the drugs that's hanging over Bubs, though. It's Sherrod's death.

That Ross McKeon article is terrible, really.

Although I'm intrigued to see that Brooks Orpik is supposedly going to be a UFA this summer....

Kings 5 Oil 2. Although, I believe that the Oilers (spit) will have a decent road trip anyways after. Nice to see Garon comin around, Roloson was a treat for me when my Nucks played you, and assured us a few weak goals a night... This is your playoffs, so enjoy :)

Oh yeah, it's Sherrod no doubt. But I guess fixing would make him forget about it; or so I've heard:D

Just looked at your update and haven't read the piece but your highlight was enough. Fuck, it's depressing to think someone would read that and parrot it as gospel.

FWIW, my idea would be to sign Stoll to a two year contract and then deal him the following summer. I'd like to keep him around for one more season just to give the 13-89 kids another few AB's before we begin to start them against left handed pitching. Of cours we have to extend Horc too and my pivot plan would be 10-13-89 down the middle and we could keep Marty too as the old fellow who's affordable because he likes it here and likes having a job.

And, yes, Lowe has to get 25-77 inked and extend Horc.

I think that's the way its going to go Dennis. They will extend Horcoff and it looks clear that Cogliano can be a centre on one of the top three lines. So the only question mark is Gagner. If he improves next year then Stoll is gone - his money and Roli's will be needed down the road for Cogliano, Gagner and whoever will be the main man between the pipes.

Although I'm intrigued to see that Brooks Orpik is supposedly going to be a UFA this summer...

It's been said before, but the defensive RFA crop this summer is stupendously good. Meszaros, Ehrhoff, Phaneuf, Weber, Suter, Gilbert, Pitkanen, Seabrook and Bouwmeester.

Meszaros, Ehrhoff, Phaneuf, Weber, Suter, Gilbert, Pitkanen, Seabrook and Bouwmeester.

Quit it.

I left Boston Pizza after the Oil went down two. What an abysmal display of hockey. I can't even come close to explaining how bad they looked.

This has classic 1-4 season-killing road trip written all over it. I am filled with fear.

Not the boldest prediction, perhaps, but certainly an accurate one to date.


We lose to shitty teams. That's what we do. The Oil will only rise (and only sometimes) to the dare-to-be-great situation, which is why we always lose to shitty teams.

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