The Oilers waltzed into Florida to try and come out with a 2-2 road trip after losing the last two. It’s not a great situation for us up here, it’s freezing, everyone is pissed off because of it, and the only thing that’s going to improve the current mood is an eventful hockey game and a win.
In soon-to-be related news, I just finished re-watching the entire series of King of the Hill. It’s a great show, if you haven’t watched it, I suggest you do, if you have, go watch it again. It’s aged very well, and I don’t think the social commentary has never been more relevant. I’m going to tie a bunch of that into this recap, because after the first, it wasn’t exactly fun to watch that game.
A minute and a half into the game, the Oilers get their first chance. Leon Draisaitl takes a cross-crease feed from Alex Chaisson, but Roberto Luongo is there to stop it. That will be a theme in the 1st.
A few minutes later, Connor McDavid makes his first play of the game. He dances through couple Panther players on the zone-entry, makes a pass across to Rattie for a beautiful opportunity, and again, Luongo isn’t having any part of that. Another tremendous save.
At this point, almost nothing happen for the next ten minutes. The seeds were being planted to grow into one of the most boring hockey games in recent memory.
The Oilers and Panthers would both get called for some questionable penalties, Draisaitl had a good chance, but missed the net. Aside from that nothing spectacular, just slow, slow skating from either side.
The Oilers finished ahead in the shot department with a whopping nine. This would be the high point of the game.
The Oilers got scored on twice while only mustering four shots on goal. It was maybe the worst period of hockey I’ve seen in a year. I’m sure the dozens of fans in attendance were thoroughly enraged.
Speaking of enraged, and because there is no reason to talk any more about that particular period, in King of the Hill, Hank threatens to kick someone’s ass in almost every episode. I think maybe he should have been a hockey player with that mentality, that’s one of the only professions where that kind of an attitude is both accepted, and sometimes expected. It’s amazing how relatable they make that character while he’s doing that given that I’ve never been in a fight outside a hockey game. For him, it’s a daily occurrence to try and fight someone.
Don’t believe me? Watch this compilation.
See, Kevin Quinn? We’re Cowboying up just fine over here!
Anyway, 2-0 Florida heading into the break.
The third was a lot better than the second, but that bar is about as low as the temperature with windchill outside.
It took just 23 seconds for Connor McDavid to set up Leon Draisaitl for the Oilers first goal of the game. 2-1 now, if you’re feeling lucky you could almost get behind the idea of a third period comeback.
Now, you’ll notice that that means Connor and Leon are on the same line. That’s because Todd McLellan used the blender during the intermission. His continuous knowledge is about the same as these Megalow Mart employees.
A few short minutes later, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins gets called for slashing for holding a guy — more on that later.
Cam Talbot got very confused by Sasha Barkov’s screen, went down expecting a shot while the royal road pass was completed, Jonathan Huberdeau easily puts it into the empty net as a bunch of Penalty killers were standing around doing precisely nothing.
The Panthers added an empty netter, and 4-1 is the final.
- Overall, just a disgraceful performance. No player for the Oilers was up to par. Connor is still Connor, but there wasn’t a single with speed moment. It actually looked like every player on the ice suffered from whatever the hell Pontus Aberg got up to in Florida last year.
- Cam Talbot is going to have to be a lot better if he expects to get a contract, and I assure you, it is very much in his interest to be negotiating with Peter Chiarelli.
- Kailer Yamamoto had to watch that game from in the press-box. I bet he fell asleep watching that tire fire.
- Did I mention they had four shots in the 2nd period? Four.
- The defense was also a disaster, and it’s not like Florida played all that well, either.
- Todd McLellan’s seat better be getting really hot. It’s certainly not squarely on him when the entire team drags their asses like that, but at some point a new leader is needed. That point was about 11 months ago.
- The refs were really odd tonight. It’s not that they called unnecessary penalties entirely, it’s that they were all the wrong calls. Zack Kassian was called for charging and a lot of people got upset because it wasn’t charging, had they called it interference it wouldn’t have been as questionable. RNH held up someone and got called for slashing, Draisaitl got called for hooking instead of holding, and the Panthers were getting similarly odd calls. It was as though the refs were handing out two minutes for “Something, don’t care what”.
- Hey Sportsnet, you know what people love? When your commentators sit there praising really bad and overpriced players for doing things that don’t help the team win. Milan Lucic was on a receiving end of that a lot tonight, and Kris Russell was even getting praised for his Dad’s career, again. It sure didn’t do much to help people appreciate the game.
- No, I’m not sorry for talking about King of the Hill as much as the game in this recap. If you watched the game, you don’t really want to relive it; And if you didn’t watch the game, I envy you.
- Anyway, here is some motivation for the boys until Sunday. They’re not getting it from their actual coach.