The Oilers made a series of moves in the past 48 hours — They assigned Caleb Jones to the minors, they signed Mikko Koskinen to a hefty deal, and they waived Ty Rattie and Ryan Spooner. Both of those players cleared waivers and remain with the big club. What’s more surprising, is that Ryan Spooner is playing tonight. I guess we’ll see how this works out.
Fan apathy is at an all-time high right now. Just about everyone talking about the Oilers is of the understanding that the games are an afterthought. The Oilers on the ice haven’t been all that great from a fan perspective, on the other hand, the front office is providing a very high level of entertainment. As a result, most fans are detaching themselves from the team, and are looking at it as outsiders until something good finally happens. They’ve waited too long to support blindly. Anyway, onto the game.
To start the game, Sportsnet is having a few of it’s technical difficulties. Nothing too serious, but it’s flashed black a few times, and is now making a very obnoxious, high-pitched, static noise. I really hope that stops, or I’m going to go deaf. The game is a minute and a half old, and Sportsnet has inconvenienced me more than either of these teams have inconvenienced each other.
Kyle Brodziak gets a shot from in the slot just over two minutes in, Howard turns it aside.
A quarter way through the period and the Red Wings are controlling a lot more of the play than the Oilers. They’ve had a few good chances with the defensemen walking into the slot as a few Oilers stand by doing nothing. No real scoring chances because, like us, Detroit lacks shooting talent. Still, being out-shot 5-1 by a team like this isn’t very good.
That high=pitched sound seems to come and go. It’s a terrible sound. If you can’t hear it, the best way to describe it is this:
Eight minutes in and this is so far a boring game, we have two shots too, and that awful noise hasn’t gone away. It looks as though it’s picking up now though, the Oilers and getting some zone time and forced an icing. The fans are cheering, that’s nice.
Zack Kassian tried taking one of those long shots that went in for him against Buffalo, didn’t work for him that time.
Looks like Ken Hitchcock is trying to decide between the two 20-year-olds 12 minutes into the game. Jusse Puljujarvi started the game on Connor McDavid’s line while Kailer Yamamoto was with Colby Cave and Ryan Spooner. Now Kailer is up top, and Puljujarvi is with the Waiver boys. I really with Ty Rattie was on that line, actually. We could have the identity line, and the Waivers line. Oh well.
First penalty of the game is happening with 7:30 remaining. It’s against the Oilers for hooking. Normally I’d be upset with them cutting to commercial before being told which player, but in this case, it saves me from that flash-bang noise.
It’s Draisaitl in the box.
On the Penalty Kill, it’s the Oilers getting a chance. Kyle Brodziak, Zack Kassian, and Adam Larsson get in three on two. They pass it around but Howard stops it.
Less than a minute later, Connor McDavid gets behind the defense and rings it off the post. This is a damn good penalty kill.
Well, with 12 seconds remaining on the penalty, Andreas Athanasiou get behind the Oilers, takes it into the slot, makes a move on Koskinen, but the sprawled goalie makes a great glove save. Penalty killed, with the Oilers getting more chances.
Five left and this game is getting exciting, both teams are flying and looking to create.
Four minutes left and the Oilers get their first powerplay as Frans Nielsen is going to have to sit for two or less for tripping. If the Oilers can score here, we might have a chance.
Well, the powerplay looks pretty bad, no one could complete a pass and we got no shots. Then to top it off, with 48 seconds left in the powerplay, the Oilers get called for too many men, and negate the man-advantage. I liked the Oilers short-handed more anyway.
And just as the period ends, Leon Draisaitl has to make a tremendous stick save to keep us from taking a deficit into the intermission.
The period ends 0-0, shots: 11-7 Detroit, and I may have to watch the rest on mute if the broadcast doesn’t fix this.
First minute in, Connor McDavid takes the feed from Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and gets a backhand on net. Jimmy Howard is square, and doesn’t get beat there.
The identity line has a good shift, working the boards in the offensive zone. This team has become really boring as late. I’m documenting board play when I do these recaps, because scoring chances are so infrequent. There was some exciting stuff in the first period for a short time, but that has disappeared. On the plus side, so has that noise.
Four minutes in, Dylan Larkin opens the scoring for the Red Wings. He carries the puck in, passes it off to Nyqvist, takes the pass back above the right circle and beats Koskinen with the one-timer.
1-0 Red Wings.
Six mintues in, Adam Larsson trips up Dylan Larkin and the Oilers are going to the penalty kill. Hopefully it looks like their first penalty kill.
It definitely didn’t. The Red Wings were taking a lot of shots at the net. Not a lot hit, Koskinen had to make a few saves, but alas, the Red Wings didn’t score.
Half way through the game, Luke Glendenning doubles the lead for the Red Wings. Darren Helm gets a cross-seam pass to him, and he beats Koskinen in close.
2-0 Red Wings.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins gets the first Oilers scoring chance that I can remember in a really long time, about 13 minutes in. He takes a pass from Jujhar Khaira while Puljujarvi is keeping two Red Wings occupied, and walks the puck into the slot before being stopped by Howard.
5:25 left, and the Oilers are getting a powerplay. The Red Wings aren’t good, so it is possible to get a goal here, as long as the Oilers can complete a pass.
Nope, not a great powerplay. Not a single shot.
“Fire Chiarelli” chant is getting louder as this game goes on.— Oilers John ✈️ (@OilersJohn) January 23, 2019
And absolutely nothing eventful happened the rest of the period. If I were at this game, I would feel robbed so far.
Anyway, period ends 2-0 with Detroit leading 23-17 in the shots department.
Oilers start the period keeping it in the Red Wings zone for almost two minutes. They got a good amount of shot attempts, but not a whole lot of substance.
I’m just going to update if there’s something actually interesting happening from here. I’ve exceeded my word-count by quite a bit, and this is an awful game.
Ok a goal. Leon Draisaitl puts home a rebound from the right side of the net. It’s only a one-goal game now, but I still have very little faith. 4:31 into the frame.
2-1 Red Wings.
At 6:28 in, Glendenning gets another one, beats Koskinen with a real soft one, short-side.
3-2 Red Wings.
So apparently if your section starts chanting ‘fire Chiarelli’ security shows up...— Winger Harlie LLAP (@HarleyMaxis) January 23, 2019
Oilers are getting a powerplay after Mike Green sends Darnell Nurse into the boards from behind. 6 painfully slow minutes left.
Nothing happened on that powerplay either.
Oilers pull the goalie with three minutes left, Draisaitl passes to Matt Benning, who one-times a great slapshot past Howard to make it 3-2.
We’re getting a challange for goalie interference. We’ll see how that plays out. Quick decision — goal.
3-2 Red Wings.
The Oilers did play a lot better in the 3rd period, but score-effects were on full-display. Too frequently, these games have become unwatchable. It’s not just that this team is really bad, it’s that they’re boring, too. It doesn’t matter what kind of things you do for fun, how remote of an area you live in, or how little you value weekday nights, your time can be spend in any possible way, and it’s better than this.
I don’t know about the rest of you, but for me, it’s been a really long time since I have had this little interest in watching a hockey game.
Oilers lose 3-2. The Bye-Week starts right now, and I am happy to have a break from watching Oilers hockey. The notoriously awful All-Star game will be more entertaining than what we’ve seen since Oscar Klefbom went down.
It is my belief a change is imminent at the GM position in Edmonton. It’s no longer a matter of it, but when Peter Chiarelli’s is let go. I’d expect news shortly.— Ryan Rishaug (@TSNRyanRishaug) January 23, 2019