Canucks/Oilers: Things Are Tough All Over
And we're back!!;)
I tried messaging with Cam today but I'd imagine he's pretty busy trying to get in all his Edmonton partying before heading back stateside to school. Had I spoken to him though, I'd imagine he'd have been able to find a pic to accompany that quote, ie it was inspired by that old SNL sketch where Jimmy Fallon played a morning radio shockjock.
LT's on the record as saying the whole mountain's falling down right now and I don't think he's far off. The offense has started to roll, 19 goals in the last 6 games even though 7 of their last 9 goals have come via special teams, but now Roloson's Sv Pct from more than the last few games resembles more of an exempliary NBA free throw shooter than it does an NHL goalie. And the defensive corps have begun to stink to the point that the Oilers are about to sit Smid tonight which speaks to the point that the Oilers are finally embracing reality instead of courting the optics of the disasterous Pronger trade.
Can things get much worse?
The awnser is yes because things are super tight in the NW Divsion and if the Oilers throw up two regulation losses tonight vs the visiting Canucks and then tomorrow night in Calgary, well we're officially looking at a freefall.
Just the other day MacT referenced the Oilers treading water and I'd say a more apt description would be the Oilers sitting alongside a pothole and gleefully watching a makeshift sailboat peruse it's murky contents.
They've been there that long.
Back on October 23rd the Oilers took their record to 6-2 by beating the visiting Yotes by a score of, well, 6-2. Since then the Oilers have gone 12-14-2 and that's a prolonged stretch of mediocrity by anyone's standards. Now the question is if they'll come out of it and if so then by who's hand. We'll refer to goals against as pitching and goals for as hitting and in baseball you'll often hear teams or fans of middling teams lamenting the ability of said squads to combine good hitting with good pitching and defense. Early on the Oilers were getting the pitching with Roloson taking the hill and inspiring confidence. On the other hand you had a whole bunch of rookies at the plate looking like they couldn't hurt curveballs combined with vets guessing wrong even when the count was in their favour.
Now we're very close to a new year turning over and all of a sudden balls are finding the gaps and finding their ways over the fence but now the fielders are dropping two hoppers and Roli's falling behind in the count to nearly every batter. There is a new hurler taking the bump tonight though as Jussi gets the start and that can only be viewed as a positive. Smid's out and Hedja's drawing back in to team with Shaggy and Winchester is out with Jacques drawing back in.
The best thing about playing in a tight division is things can change in the matter of days rather than weeks and with two regulation wins in the next 27 hours the Oilers will once again be high on the Northwest hog. But the bigger truth will be that this team has been scuffling for awhile and Rome won't be built in a day and maybe the Oilers don't have the workers in house to build it in the first place.
But we'll leave that for another time;)