Initially, the Oilers started off to a blazing pace with a 6-2-1 record to start to this season. However, after these two recent losses to our North West division rivals including the Calgary Flames and Vancouver Canucks, the party balloons are starting to look a little deflated. Really, there’s no reason to panic yet…
It’s hard to imagine, but just a few short days ago, Oilers fans were riding the high from the come from behind win at the expense of the Columbus Blue Jackets. Over at Lowetide, he quipped that the people were walking around the city of Edmonton like they were in a Viagra commercial:
So, it’s morning in Oilerland. The birds are chirping, grown men are skipping to work and I’ll even say the dream of a post-season berth is alive. The whole fucking town is one giant Viagra commercial.
Conversely, today over at Lowetide, he’s offered up some hope that a potential trade with Montreal might be in the works. Lowetide’s had his trade watch going since the season started. Though I agree entirely with his thoughts on the actual need for some trades, thus far we haven’t seen any evidence that one will materialize in the near future. However, Lowetide provided a link for a Montreal newspaper which noted that Kevin Prendergast has spent an extended stay in Montreal. The implications of this include the possibility that a trade between the Edmonton Oilers and Montreal Canadiens is brewing.
Let’s been honest with ourselves here… Watching the Oilers lose two games in a row over the short course of a weekend, really sucks. When you slot those two losses in particular to the Vancouver Canucks and the Calgary Flames, now that just stings like a punch below the belt. Prior to the Calgary Flames game, when I took a glimpse at the Oilers projected line up, I could feel a sinking feeling in my stomach. Though Brule’s return on Sunday offered up a glimpse of hope, watching Stortini play what ended up being nearly 15 minutes of ice time and on our power play unit, well then any inital glimmer of hope was gone. Don’t get me wrong here, I like Stortini as much as the next Oilers fan, but when we’re down 2 goals against the Canucks with Luongo in net, I just can’t imagine Stortini getting the job done. Sure, the effort and try are there, but the offensive ability is just lacking.
Over at Oilers Nation, Robin Brownlee, a witty if irreverent Oilers fan himself certainly has his finger on the pulse that is the Oilers fan ‘base. Today, he’s opined in a recent post about how the sky is falling for Oilers fans. Here’s a few of his thoughts:
At 6-2-1, Oilers fans were on top of the world. At 6-4-1, Tom Gilbert and Denis Grebeshkov have been exposed as clowns, Shawn Horcoff is stealing money from Daryl Katz and Ethan Moreau should have the C ripped off his chest yesterday. Is that about right?
Even if Brownlee is sarcastically suggesting that Oilers fans are fickle bordering on boorish, I think that he’s right about the prevailing sentiments around the fan base itself. On the other hand, those these two losses were worsened only by the fact that we were held scoreless in our last game and that several goals against resulted from defensive lapses, it’s hard to know how much we can attribute the recent play of the Oilers to the effects of the flu.
The way I see it…
On the one hand, the Oilers have been hit particularly hard on both the forward and defensive lines with the combination of illness and injuries. Yet, in light of this, it probably hasn’t helped that we’re wasting a roster position on Steve MacIntrye. In spite of our recent struggles to field a roster of skaters, MacIntyre’s played all of 2 games with a mere 50 seconds in his last game vs. the Canucks.
Unfortunately, both Souray and Stone will likely be out of the lineup for at least another month. Pisani’s recovery from his back injury still leaves a fair amount of uncertainty regarding his expected return. Obviously, it would be nice if we had a little more depth available to play in the face of these recent problems.
Right now, given the recent spread of the flu throughout the roster, it’s difficult to get a handle on where we’re really at. Hopefully Comrie’s back in tomorrow night and we’ll have a little more offense from our secondary scoring lines. It could be a long and painful season at the rate things are going presently. If you’re thinking of how this team will be able to compete this season, you might already have some feelings of apprehension.