Saturday, April 29, 2006

Game Day Ramblings

I used to love Rexall Place in the playoffs. The mad energy and passion in the crowd, the reckless hedonism. Like the way I would imagine that the Coliseum in Rome was in the latter days of the empire.

Turns out that it's a fine line between "Last Days of Rome" and "First Days of Jerry Springer" ... and I think that line was crossed last game. Right from the walk up through the parking lot, the lineup outside, the number of girls dressed like they thought they had tickets to Motley Crue ... the trailer trash quality about that crowd ... it was just a bit too far for me.

I think the first sign was when a young woman was shown on the screen and some guy a long ways away yelled "I wanna fuck you!" at the top of his lungs, just screamed it, and you had to talk really loud just to be heard by the guy next to you, this guy wanted to be heard. It was the kind of line that just might have worked with the woman on the screen btw. Anyhow, I'm not offended by bad language, and I've heard people scream terrible obscenities and even threats at the referees during playoff games before and I was fine with that, but this is different.

More of a feeling than specific events really, but I'll offer up one more ditty ...

There was some sort of brouhaha up in the gallery later in the game, I looked up but couldn't really tell what was going on, couldn't hear the words either ... some woman in a tight white shirt was angry, frantic really, and pointing down several rows and yelling at somebody, I think a guy in a blue wig. Hard to see what was going on because so many people around were standing up and looking back in her direction.

Good Lord, felt like I could have closed my eyes for a moment and reopened them to find Jerry Springer at centre ice spewing out his thought of the day. :( The whole experience just left a bad feeling with me.

Hell, I didn't even listen to sports radio on the drive home. I listened to country music instead, and I never listen to country music. Haven't read a sports page since, just a quick skim through a few blogs and one or two posts on the fan forums. I feel like I'm losing my religion here. Surely I'm not the only one, I dunno?

Back to hockey ... a shame that the refs went whistle happy in this one. I think there was a really good hockey game in there wanting to show itself.

As Oiler fans we can't bitch at being 2-2 in the series. The Wings have outchanced the Oilers in every game so far this series. Granted it has gotten closer every game, this past one I think the Oilers were playing them to about evens whenever there was a stretch of 5on5 hockey. And from an Oiler POV ... improvement was made easier by being so gawd awful in the first game, that's the uber passive game of course, the Oilers coaching staff wears the dunce hat for that one.

What the hell was Peca thinking on the goal that made it 2-2? He went chasing the Detroit D for no reason at all. Net result is a 4 on2 the other way. I know we all make mistakes ... but man, that was brutal, and I can't remember Peca doing that all year. And who was the winger that supported him on the forecheck (Moreau?) ... I mean usually the first forward in makes the decision to pressure or sit back, and the F2 follows his lead ... but we saw Stoll leave Samsonov out ahead chasing shadows on his own in Game2 in a nearly identical play, so maybe the second forward makes his own call.

I was pumped about the Samsonov acquisition, and he has terrific stick skills and is fun to watch ... but if Lowe could have a do-over I think he'd keep Reasoner and the draft pick.

By my eyes Chelios is just relentless on Hemsky. Jawing nonstop whenever he's out against him.

Moreau probably shouldn't be playing, and sure as hell shouldn't be playing critical minutes.

By the Ruffian 'shots directed at net while you were on the ice' metric ... only Smyth and Horcoff are in the black at this in the playoffs at even strength. (i.e. the Oilers have outshot and sent more shots on net than DET when these guys are on the ice). In all other instances the Oilers are getting owned by this measure, and by eye as well, quite obviously I think. The worst by this metric: Murray, Bergeron, Harvey, Hemsky, Torres, Stoll.

Just a feeling, but I sense that there are a few Oiler players that wouldn't mind missing out on the second round of the playoffs as long as they are seen to have tried.

I have a good feeling about today's game. I sense a disasterous game by Legace coming, and the hockey gods, Roloson and Ryan Smyth doing the rest.


Anonymous lowetide said...

There are times in life when someone writes something and the logic grabs your brain and clamps down several times as you realize it rings true.

Ever feel that? Kind of like a full-Nelson.

Vic's line about a few Oilers being happy about giving effort and losing is such a line.

Doesn't make me happy, but it's absolutely the feeling I get.

4/29/2006 10:51 am  
Blogger Dennis said...

I think there are enough guys up to the task that we can take this series. Our top four D are older and are playing well and Rolo's been very good to great and he's been on a couple of deep Cup runs.

For me it's all about Hemsky and Samsonov and if we can somehow craft a 4th line. Babcock gets the matchups starting again today so that Franzen line will take a regular turn and our 4th boys won't.

That will make a difference come OT.

Vic...who would you say are the guys playing with a sense of contentment?

4/29/2006 11:55 am  
Anonymous lowetide said...

Roloson had a fine period there and the Oil seem to be able to compete when their best players are out there.

But the penalties and the kids (Bergeron is the guy we can pick on this period) are going to be too much I'd say unless the Wings just spent all their money.

4/29/2006 1:59 pm  
Anonymous lowetide said...

Maybe the Wings did just that? I'd prefer to say that the Oilers played as well as they possibly could in the final 40.

I'm not going to start thinking about a BOA because that's when you start getting into trouble but this Oiler group has some jam and this run appears to have legs.

4/29/2006 6:09 pm  
Blogger Black Dog Hates Skunks said...

re: 4th line - Moreau, Murray, Dvorak are getting some minutes and making a difference - Dvorak especially has been great to me

Tarnstrom's return helps in the same respect - 6 reliable D (keep in mind reliable on a sliding scale) is better then 5

this was the best game by far top to bottom through the lineup - even Ales and Sergei were making things happen

this bodes well

4/29/2006 6:26 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

Vic...I hope today is giving you some of your mojo back;)

We need shift charts!!!

4/29/2006 6:44 pm  

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