You know I like dairies...I really do. Every year I resolve to log my thoughts each and every week but I always come to the realization that I'm such a creature of habit that my musings would be more repetitive than Jeff Probst at a tribal council.
In any case my patience is failing with the Oil so as a theraputic measure I decided to give the diary treatment to the Oil/Wild game from Tuesday.
-...Hmm...MacT throws out Pisani between Moreau-Dvorak thus eliminating the need for Murray, putting off MAP's debut and bringing back Todd Harvey into the lineup. We also have Torres taking the bullet and moving to this right wing allowing Samsonov to play on his left side with Stoll centring of course. BTW, Harvey lands with Laraque and Peca. So take that #37..
- We have some new D pairings to pick apart as well. Greene stays in the lineup but is paired with Staios meaning the flammable Staios-Bergy tandem has been mercifully broken up. I just cut 25% off my swearing and I didn't even need to use Geico!! Note: Bergy moves to Smith's left side and this leaves the Pronger/Spacek duo intact.
- Oilers are nailed for a Too Many Men penalty with 44 being the guy caught jumping over the bench. Man does he ever look tense. The last time I saw someone that tight was my old HS GF on Good Friday.
- Micheal "Mess" Peca's especially soft on the puck in his own end and it leads to a scoring chance for the Wild. On the ensuing scrum Matt Greene throws 'em with Alex Henry. You know I like Hank...I really do. I saw a lot of him and Hajt when the both of them blazed a snail's trail with the Bulldogs in the mid '90's.
- Here's the game's first goal for the Wild but oh wait there's a review. Judging by the look on MacT's face I'd say he's on a steady diet of bananas and cheese these days just to avoid voiding his bowels on an hourly basis...Huzzah...the goal has been disallowed.
- Pronger opens the scoring on a shot that simply goes through Fernandez. Here's a great omen for the Oilers as far as I'm concerned. I can't remember us getting outpointed too many times this season when the opposing goal has handed us a gift.
- Sportsnet play-by-play guy Peter Loubardias tells an interesting story about how Lowe talked to Gretz about Hemsky and compared the young Czech to Guy Lafleur. Hmm...interesting. Let's count down the ways they're similar...ok here's what I've got. Both have had near death experiences...Hemsky with the slash in the neck during the lockout season and Guy with the telephone pole through the windshield of his car. Now all Ales has to do is start smoking and taking Viagra and he's pretty much Guy's doppleganger. Oh yes and there's the matter of scoring 50 goals for a few seasons as well
- Here's TV timeout so I jam over to the Canucks telecast where I learn Dan Hamhuis has given the Preds an early 1-0 lead. Well things are off to a fine start tonight
- A mention of how some Oilers employees are at a local BP taking in tonight's game. I hope former Oilers PR man Bill Tuele is there..albeit cleaning toilets for that fine eatery.
- Nice job by the 4th line as big #27 draws a penalty. Hemsky makes that cross ice pass to Spacek but Fernandez follows the play well. The other highlight is that MacT sends out a second PP unit that features a forward on the PP!!. Of course it's Stoll but the unit gives up two rushes and MacT storms off the bench muttering "Dammit I knew I was right never to do that."
It's intermission time and I'm just flipping around but I go back to the Oilers game long enough to hear MacT talking about how Fernie has the smarts to play centre. I wonder if these are the same kind of smarts that Ryan Smyth supposedly possessed lo those couple of years ago? On a positive note Reasoner has scored on the PP for the B's in TO. Note: Reasoner finished with a goal and an assist but went just 7/22 on the dot but I'd still take him back as a 3rd line pivot in '07 and I have a funny feeling that the position will be open.
- 37 turns the puck over just past the Wild blueline and winds up taking a penalty. Way to go Mess.
- Oilers kill it off but only after Pronger takes his obligitory penalty to put us down two men. Is there anything more helpeless as a fan than watching your team trying to kill off a 5-on-3? I mean other than being a baseball fan and having Barry Jones as your closer. That one was for you LT and maybe even you Cosh if you're reading.
*** This denotes a special note people. Do you think Chris Pronger might've considering retiring if he knew things were gonna be called this close? I remember the day we traded for him and I had all these visions of him gooning Iginla and Bertuzzi and now the guy can't even be mean or savvy when his team is down by a man. Please, NHL, bring back the old way of thinking for just weekend. Let's make it a home and home weekend with the Flames shall we;)?
- Back to the game and the Wild are assuming positional advantage right now as the Oilers ice the puck heading into the timeout so..
- I boogie over to the Canucks game and find that it's now 2-0 for Nashville. At this point calling Jim Hughson's tone morose would be an insult to depressed people everywhere.
- Oilers grab a PP out of the break and 94 pots his 31st goal of the season. The Oilers PP was damn good before Samsonov's arrival but with the addition of #12 it now can classified as downright evil. So let's recap shall we? Oilers up 2-0 and Canucks down 2-0. What's next I wonder? Will Wayne get off the phone with Vegas long enough to motivate his Dogs into actually giving the Kings a game later on this evening? BTW Wayne throw all your money on Duke for the first round there buddy;)
- Boogaard's running around as the whistle blows but there clearly isn't gonna be a fight so I flash over to the Canucks game where Alex Burrows is bearing down on a breakaway and Vokun falls down and gives up the top of the net but Burrows shots it wide. John Garrett throws up in his mouth
- The BoogieMan picks up two min while Moreau and Smith grab two apiece but the Oilers kill if off just before the next TV timeout. So it's back to Nashville where Hughson says that the Canucks are down 2-0 to a team that has only lost six times at home all season. Garrett chimes in that Van's next game in Columbus won't be a walk either as the Jackets are much improved. Wow, at this point Claude from Degrassi High had a sunnier disposition. Let's just say I wouldn't be following either of these guys into a bathroom anytime soon.
- Boogaard actually challenges 27 and Georges is feeling frisky so he grants him his wish and gives him a couple of shots to the ear and an occasional forearm to the head. Derek lands fewer shots than Bruce Strauss versus Jack Johnson.
- Did the Excel Energy Centre's music guy just play "One Vision" by Queen? Good lord even Freddie himself would consider that a gay song selection for a hockey game. Why not just spin 'She Moves Me" for gawdsakes.
*** Yes it's that time again for a special interlude. Listen, I hate Dallas as much as the next guy but nothing beats the guys at their rink breaking out Sabbath's "The Wizard."
- Oilers back to controlling the play right now and here we have another timeout so yes kids back to Nashville where the screen says it's 3-0 Preds but there isn't any sound. I check my receiver remote to see if it's working and then we see some footage of Hughson walking into the restroom to find Garrett lying prone in his stall and no...in related news Mr. Raditch has given the Canucks the next two days off and there will be a grief counsellor available for them on Friday.
- Ahh sweet redemption for the EEC music guy as he breaks out a little known by great straight out rock song from the '80's. It's "Gonna have a good time tonight" By INXS featuring Jimmy Barnes. Ahh the days of Video Hits and a rather fetching Ms. Samantha Taylor
-Lemaire gets the Gaborik line out against our top offensive line and Horcoff takes a penalty. Oilers kill it off and 40 minutes is over with the Oilers up by 2-0. Normally this would be in the bag but the Wild are on life support here so I say they'll really bring it in the first 5 min of the last frame. If we surivive that then we're golden Pony Boy
- As I predicted the Wild are buzzing opening the period and Walz draws 34 into a penalty. Wild 0/6 on the PP heading into this chance and...wait for it...now they're 1/7 as Foster cracks Roloson's seal. Yep, you're right, I'll never use that phrase again. So, 17 times shorthanded in the last two games. Who are we here, the Blackhawks. I guess we were paying Peca Martin Lapointe money and we do live in the past when it comes to the organization's glories. I all of a sudden have a bad feeling about this but maybe that has more to do with the fact I just ate egg whites for the third time today. Three times in one day..who do I think I am, Julio Franco? I need some good news here so it's back to Nashville..
- Ahh that's the ticket..4-0 Preds and all of a sudden my dream is alive again. We can lose to the Wings in five games dammit!!!
- Peter Loubardias boldly exclaims, "the Oilers trying to recover from holding onto the two goal lead...arguably the toughest lead in hockey." Yeah you know what's worst though? A one-goal lead dummy.
- Another great shift by the 4th line as 37-27 seem to have some real chemistry. All we need now is someone to take Harvey's place. Oilers taking control after the Wild goal and now there's just 10:25 left and all Min can do is ice the puck
- Roloson makes arguably his most important save as an Oilers given a few of the following factors: the shot was tipped and our goalies hardly ever stop those, it's a one-goal game and lastly this team needs a one goal victory like Madonna needs a Botox tree.
- Out of another timeout Lemaire gets Gaborik out against the Horcoff line again and this time MacT puts Greene out there as well
- Burns throws it up the middle for the Wild and #37 Mess picks it off and hammers a shot into Fernandez's crest. That's the way to lead!!
- Another foray to Music City where it's 5-0 now for Nashville. Yes I know I'm enjoying this way too much but I stick around juuust long enough to hear Hughson lament that Morrison has just one goal in his last 18 games. I wonder if Lou would deal Mogilny for him now?
- Gaborik versus Horcoff: Round 37 ends with Horcoff taking a penalty and it's PP advantage #8 for Minnesota. I wouldn't even say Lemaire affords them this much PP time in practice..
- Edm kills if off and the only tense moments were eased first by Spacek clearing the puck from harm's way and then 94 shovelling a nice backhand off the glass and into the neutral zone.
- As the seconds tick down we'll bring in Bob Cole's voice, "And the Edmonton Oilers...have won...the Stanley Cup." That was brought to mind by Horcoff's reaction when the horn blew but I guess I'd overreact too if I was taking more dumb penalties than Sean Brown.