Sunday, February 19, 2012
Pre-Game: Game #58 Oilers vs. Canucks
The Oilers have dropped the first two games of the homestand, looking very disjointed in doing so. Confidence is sorely lacking, especially in the 2nd tier of players for the Oilers. The Oilers need to get back to taking care of their own business and playing their own position, instead of running around all over the ice covering for someone else. It's OK to take chances here and there, but the percentage meter needs to be running a little clearer in the Oilers' minds. The biggest thing for the Oilers is for every player to understand what they bring to the table and use it to the best of his ability. Hall and Paajarvi should be using their speed, Petry speed and shot, Horcoff and Belanger get in the way of the other team, Whitney and Gilbert puck distribution, Smid Sutton Eager Petrell physicality, Eberle a nose for the puck, Barker use you shot more but dammit breathe when you shoot so you can hit the net. Everyone has something they can bring, but they have to get in positions where they can use their talents. This is where the coaches put players in positions to succeed but once in place, its up to player to apply his skillset. After another lost season and another year of looking of silver linings, its tough to feel much of anything. The players I would imagine are feeling much the same. I think they will feel invigorated after the trade deadline with some new bodies in place, but playing games when the wins and losses don't mean much in the standings year after year has to be tough on the players and its fans. Vancouver comes into this game smoking hot, soundly beating the Leafs yesterday 6-2. The Canucks are 13-2-4 since the turn of the year. The Canucks seemed to have found their groove and looking for another long playoff run this spring.
- The Sedins are the best duo in the league overall, have a better blend of forwards.
- The Canucks Top 4 could be as good as anyones.
- Likely to see Schneider tonight, but he is still better than anything the Oilers have.
Special Teams Canucks
- Canucks are 1st in PP and 6th on PK, so they even trump the Oilers there.
- Alain Vigneault has his team believing while the Oilers have looked even worse without Tom Renney while he is out with a concussion.
- The Oilers seem aimless right now while the Canucks are rolling.
Game Time - 7 PM MT @ Rexall Place on Sportsnet West.