Monday, June 05, 2006

"It's the same thing as Radek's"

That was Craig MacTavish comparing Dwayne Roloson's injury in Game One of the Cup Finals with an injury Radek Dvorak sustained in Game One of their second round series with the San Jose Sharks. Dvorak would go on to miss the next eight games and 12 days.

So it was with those six words Craig MacTavish began what is likely to be a five game eulogy for the Edmonton Oilers season of 2006.

It's hard to look at this whole game and not focus on the play that knocked out the Conn Smyth candidate or even the game winning goal for Carolina where Ty Conklin misplayed a dump-in into a tap-in for Rod Brind'Amour.

And right now I'm not even gonna try.

I'm toggling between the NHL Network and The Score with all the talking heads musing about how this is just another hurdle on the Oilers journey.

Of course we all know it's done.

If the Oilers had a snowball's chance in hell with either of Conklin or Markkanen then Roloson wouldn't have been such a big story in the first place.

This is Dennis again. Technical difficulties were resolved for just one post.


Anonymous lowetide said...

I am now hoping for an alien attack. Or wildabeasts.

Something vicious and quick.

God this hurts.

6/05/2006 10:09 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

I never ever let myself believe until we beat Ana.

And now you know why;)

6/05/2006 10:12 pm  
Blogger RiversQ said...

They're not done yet. It's grim, but if they can outplay them like that in Carolina, they can still take this series with Conkannen.

6/05/2006 10:54 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

Hail riversq! I'm scared to venture onto the boards to see what they're saying.

6/05/2006 11:29 pm  
Blogger hffpff said...

For some reason I'm not as worried as I probably should be.

I think it's still very doable. There were stretches during the season when we looked like world beaters and we didn't have Rollie back then. Of course, we weren't playing a 112 point team every game but then their division isn't exactly awe inspring. After all, this team barely scraped by the crippled Sabres.

I think the big difference in this series is that finally, there's room for guys like Hemsky & Samsonov to roam - especially Hemsky, whom I think may see this as a chance to redeem himself for his lacklustre play in the first 3 rounds. I think we can do the down-by-2-then-pull-the-goalie-and-come-back-to-win-7-6 thingy.

Before Rollie's injury, I feel that the Oilers are the favorites. Now it's just back to even.

6/05/2006 11:38 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

Q for Vic. You said in the comments to a previous post that you think Carolina has the better forwards. Carolina got badly outshot at ES this year and the Oilers outshot their opp. By that metric, I'd suggest that the Oilers did a better job of carrying the play than Carolina. Carolina had a better shooting percetnage and a better save percentage. While I'm not necessarily disagreeing that the Weight/Whitney duo is better than Stoll/Sammy/Hemsky, I wonder if the Oilers don't make it back in other places. Goal differential at ES, in a non-Conkkannen world looks to slightly favour EDM as well.

6/05/2006 11:43 pm  
Blogger Black Dog Hates Skunks said...

Its grim and I lost a lot of sleep last night.

But you know what I'll reserve judgement until after tomorrow night. The Oilers could have scored 7 or 8 on Ward. They did not and fair play to him for that and if he does that for another three games then its so long. But I don't know if he can.

if Jussi can play well they still have a chance - is that asking a lot - sure it is. If he does may they still lose? Sure.

But I'll wait until tomorrow night. I think they still have a pulse.

6/06/2006 7:16 am  
Anonymous snafu said...

Hey Oiler fans, I really feel for you. After the first couple of periods, I thought this series would be a lot of fun to watch. Ward made some unbelievable saves and he was the only reason the Canes could overcome their deficit. Then Roloson gets injured. It just isn't fair but it does seem a bit fitting for a year where no one has been able to predict anything (well except Maggie).

We may never know who the best team in the NHL was in 2006, but we do know that it just got that much harder for the Oilers to be the last team standing. I'm not really happy with that.

6/06/2006 10:40 am  
Blogger ToTheBank said...

Ward is WAY overrated, came up with some timely saves and all that, but we still scored 4 goals. Roli was weak last night. We WOULD NOT have gotten to the final with out him, but we CAN WIN without him.

I believe.

6/06/2006 12:55 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

I'm in line with huffpuff and tothebank here. Obviously losing Roloson hurts, but the sky isn't falling here.

About a 1 in 4 chance for the Oilers to win the cup from your local bookie now, if he still has kept that line open. It would be about 1 in 3 if Roloson had not been hurt.

1 in 4 for the series is about the same place as they were when they were trailing S.J 1 game to 0. And about the same as when they were leading DET 2 games to 1.

The bookies have pegged the loss of Roloson having the effect of about .35 goals-against in a game. That's a lot, not in the league of Hasek, Forsberg or Kiprusoff to their teams. But still a lot.

As a point of reference: Smyth or Horcoff or Pronger would probably impact the line by about 1/4 goal difference if they got hurt.

6/06/2006 2:06 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

The bookies have pegged the loss of Roloson having the effect of about .35 goals-against in a game.

Seems low to me but then I think that they were giving Carolina too much love prior to the series.

The lines I'm seeing today on oddschecker are in the 2/1 range...that's 1/3, no?

6/06/2006 2:17 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

The sky isn't falling Vic because it's already fell;)

Seriously...we saw this story the whole season before Rolo finally started playing well which was what...maybe 7-10 games after he showed up? Maybe even more and then he allowed a terrible goal in that OTW in Chi and another bad one in that loss to Stl.

The Oilers are like most teams in that they can't win unless they get great goaltending. I'm with MC that the Oilers will outchance and outshoot Carolina but they'll lose the netminding battle. It's not about us bringing in a's about our backups being terrible.

I will admit this team did a helluva job earlier in the season still racking up points with shitty netminding but now they've got to win four of the next six games with shitty netminders who are also ice cold.

Look on the ground and you'll see the sky.

6/06/2006 2:42 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...

I just checked, looks like mostly British books. Anyhow I clicked on the link provided for Stanly cup odds and it gave 12/5 for the Oilers, 3/10 for CAR.

In terms of American odds that -333/+240. Which washes out to a 28% chance of the Oilers taking the cup, 72% for CAR. And with a strong hold (sort of like the theoretical profit margin) of 6.3%.

Parlay through the odds for tomorrow's game line (-170/150) over the remaining games, allowing for home ice of course (Oilers -115 to -120 at home) ... and the Oilers are a shade over 26% of winning the cup by your local books at 3%ish holds.

So it's a shade over "1 in 4" ... but near as dammit for the purposes of the post earlier. :-) Would have been about 35% at this instance if Roloson had remained healthy.

Heading into this series ... if there was an imaginary neutral site game the Oilers would have been even odds, actually ever so slightly favoured. And if you had asked for the prop a bookie would have made the Oilers the favourite to outshoot Carolina in any game in this series. Ward was a pretty strong favourite to have a better save% in this series than Roloson BTW. Which has more to do with the style of Carolina's offense than the goalies themselves IMO.

I think you've got Roloson pegged at somewhere near the level of game impact to the Oilers as Iginla+Kiprusoff combined would be to the Flames. Seems wildly high to me, but I love positivity so I've never argued. :D

6/06/2006 3:21 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

Interesting point on Ward being favoured save percentage wise; Oilers weren't slouches at ESS% this year either and Roloson was better than Ward all year long. I'd think that the impact of the PP in a short series like this would make betting on this like betting on which way a knuckleball will break though.

I think you've got Roloson pegged at somewhere near the level of game impact to the Oilers as Iginla+Kiprusoff combined would be to the Flames. Seems wildly high to me, but I love positivity so I've never argued. :D

Heh. Well, you can look up save percentages as well as I can. Either the Oil were buggering up the save percentage for Conklin/Markkanen all year long or Roloson really is worth that much of a bump. They were astoundingly bad this year; I keep saying it but check out the difference between the 1998-99 Blues who used six goalies and the 1999-00 Blues who trotted out Turek and McLennan (!) pretty much exclusively. From +28 to +83. Turek and McLennan weren't anything special but they were a hell of a lot better than what the Blues had. It ain't that Roloson's so great, IMO it's that Conkkanen (a name, incidentally, that is now cited in the wikipedia; you may now consider yourself something of a culture developer) was so bad.

6/06/2006 3:32 pm  
Blogger Vic Ferrari said...


I think that Conklin and Markkanen weren't quite as bad as they seemed. They both let in some bad goals, but sometimes shooters just make their shots too. I mean in last night's game ... If Pisani doesn't shoot the puck into Ward when he had 2/3rds of the net open, if Horcoff can lift either of his two great chances from the side into the top half of the net, instead of shooting them into Ward's glove ... then young Cam doesn't get first star, and there is probably speculation about Gerber getting the nod for game 2. Shit happens.

If the Coyotes didn't have the opposition ring their goalposts 47 times how bad could they have been? Would Cujo have gotten the new contract?

If Vancouver hadn't hit the other team's posts a staggering 59 times, if a fairer rate of those had gone in instead ... would they have made the playoffs? Hell ya, and comfortably. Again, shit happens.

Aside from all of the other things that a team needs to win a playoff series, I think they need Markkanen to just not let in many bad ones. Who knows, maybe a bunch of shots will just hit him and he'll look terrific. We'll see. Even bad goalies have stretches where they stop everything it seems, and even great goalies have stretches where they can't seem to stop a thing. I mean it's not a good thing obviously, but I just can't see how this is as dire as many people seem to think.

6/06/2006 3:59 pm  
Blogger mudcrutch79 said...

I mean it's not a good thing obviously, but I just can't see how this is as dire as many people seem to think.

Fair enough. If I'm reading you right, you're basically saying that Markkanen and Conklin had some wicked bad luck this year in terms of guys hitting their shots and that's why they're down so low on the save percentage charts. I can buy the reasoning there and the argument from that that Roloson actually has a smaller impact that I'm saying. It doesn't mean I'm not going to be having flashbacks to every game that was pissed away with those guys in net this year though.;)

6/06/2006 4:08 pm  
Blogger Dennis said...

Both of you guys being optimistic would usually make me feel better but not this time;)

I can just picture how bad our PK's gonna be now and I have this premonition of the Oilers being up in scoring chances 7-2 after the first period of G2 yet still trailing 2-1.

Granted I have more faith in Jussi than Ty.

6/06/2006 5:52 pm  
Blogger Christy Hammond said...

Did you hear that not only did Roloson strain his MCL, but he also hyperextended his elbow? Poor guy.

6/07/2006 11:23 am  

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