Jeff Deslauriers and Devan Dubnyk are apparently going to be splitting the game tonight. Seriously, guys? What are you really going to learn about these two tonight that you don't already know? I don't know which guy is starting and, quite honestly (Renney!), I don't care. What we have here are two marginal goaltending prospects that have been in the organization for some time, and haven't had much success. Sure, Deslauriers was probably mismanaged to start his career, and yeah Dubnyk's only ever played for awful teams, but both of these guys have gotten quite a few reps and haven't exactly done much. My preference is Dubnyk, but that's based more on the fact that he has a better chance of improving than his probable performance this year. There has been some suggestion that the team will keep both. I'd rather they didn't. It was time to make a decision a long time ago, so let's get on with it! The whole situation reminds me a lot of this comic:
It just never gets old. And seriously, go to Chamber of Comics and read some more Mike Winters (Pair Bond is simply amazing). It's pretty much guaranteed to be more entertaining than whatever Sportsnet has going on during the intermission.
Some thoughts on tonight's game:
- Linus Omark draws in on a line with Colin Fraser and Ryan Jones. It's curious to me that he was never put in on one of the offensive lines in camp. He never had a chance to play on a line with Hemsky or Gagner, Penner or Horcoff. Given the way Taylor Hall has performed, that's too bad. If Omark had been given the opportunity, he may just have grabbed a spot. As it is, he's going to be headed to the AHL. Or at least, that's my interpretation of Tom Renney's comments: "Flashes are great, but you've got to be a complete player when you're out there for forty second shifts. It's 200 by 85 with and without the puck. There's no question he's certainly got a sizzle to him when we're on the offense, and he's a big part of it. That is exciting for all of us. At the end of the day he has to clearly show us that he can compete and play the game with and without the puck over that forty second shift, and over the course of a game." So yeah... hope you like Oklahoma Linus!
- Liam Reddox is through seventy-two holes with the clubhouse lead, and now he's just waiting for the other guys to finish. He's trying to be polite and I'm sure he's offered the appropriate platitudes to his competitors, but deep down, I know he wants Ryan Jones to miss that six-footer for par.
- Richard Petiot, Shawn Belle, and Theo Peckham are all in the lineup tonight battling for the last spot on defense. That the Oilers have decided to do that instead of playing all of their real defenders on real pairings like they did two nights ago suggests to me that a decision hasn't yet been made on who to keep. And that means that tonight is an extremely important night for all three players. At the start of training camp I thought Peckham would win the job, but I'm a lot less confident in that prediction now.
- Look closely at that group of defensemen. That's what this team will look like after the trade deadline when Vandermeer has been traded for a draft pick, Whitney is out with a bad foot, and Foster is injured with pubitis or something. Look, and be afraid.