Missing: One broom – Last seen in the hands of a Duck on its way to Calgary.
THE DRAISAITL INCIDENT
Yesterday the punishment for Leon Draisaitl’s spear was handed down and as expected it was only a fine but wow, did hockey fans go batshit over the punishment handed down. For me, I didn’t expect Leon would be handed a suspension, why would he? He has no history of this kind of behavior nor has he ever been suspended unlike Joe Thornton, who also was given a game misconduct in January for a spear on the St.Louis Blues’ Paul Stastny but also escaped a mandatory vacation for his action.
Here’s my contention though. Jumbo Joe actually speared a guy. I mean he took his hockey stick and thrust it into the midsection of the opponent and that my friend IS intent to injure. Look at the pic above! Thornton actually puts enough force into the spear to create a bow in his stick…
Betcha a lot of Sharks fans forgot about that eh?
I understand that what Draisaitl did is within the NHL’s definition of what a spear is but that’s not a spear. Check out this quick clip I made where I compared Leon Draisaitl’s spear with Thornton’s spear and then the mother of all spears, Marty McSorley on Mike Bullard and then tell me what Draisaitl did was THAT severe…
GAME FOUR and FIVE
7-0… But it could’ve been a lot different had Larsson’s shot went into the net and not off of the crossbar and if Nuge had buried that open net chance… Move on to game 5.
She’s a best of three and the Oilers have home ice advantage!!
The rubber match is tonight and I expect a fiery Oilers squad to come out and absolutely hand the Sharks a spanking. Nobody likes to be embarrassed like the Oilers were on Tuesday and everyone on that team will be fired up not to mention the fans. I don’t think it’s going to be a low-even game at all but I do have some questions going in.
- Will we see a timid game from Zack Kassian or will we get the human wrecking ball?
In games 3 and 4 Kassian was as much a passenger as the rest of the team. Personally, I think the fans are going to rev this team up like crazy and that first 10 minutes we’ve been seeing where the Oilers are on their heels, I think it’ll be the Sharks who will be on their fins.
- How will Todd McLellan address Pat Maroon’s slump?
I wrote about Maroon’s lack of production after game 4 and we seen him dropped in the lineup in the latter stages of the game. Should the Oilers try using some more speed with McDavid? I mean, he’s looked okay with Cagguila at times and the Drake does have a gritty side to his game.
- With the last change, will Draisaitl be up with McDavid again?
No doubt the Oilers are going to take advantage of having the last change but who should they deploy to stop the Marleau/Thornton/Pavelski line? Not sure I’d have Nuge’s line against them as RNH is literally the only real defensive player on that line. How about tossing Pouliot/Letestu/Kassian against them as those players are the team’s primary penalty killers. Surely they’d have success in that role.
- Keep Nurse/Benning away from the Sharks top 6.
Just going from the eye test, Benning and Nurse had a shit time trying to stop the Sharks skillers.
- Edmonton has called up seven players from Bakersfield right? Reinhart, Ellis, Lander, Oesterle, Fayne, Laleggia, and Khaira.
I can’t see any of them getting any action to be honest unless some real injuries take some of the top 6 out. But if I had to go from most likely to play to least likely I’d go Lander, Khaira, Oesterle, Reinhart, Laleggia, Ellis, Fayne.
The computer boys will have Fayne at the top of course but I can’t see it at all. He lacks a certain element of determination that McLellan likes in his bottom pairing dmen and he’s certainly not replacing Kris Russell. The thought alone makes me chortle aloud.
Now, Anton Lander can take faceoffs at least and Khaira can be a large presence on the wall but let’s be frank, Iiro Pakarinen and Anton Slepyshev are going to get the majority of the TOI because they’ve got size, they hit, they can skate well, and they can shoot. Oesterle and Reinhart shoot left so automatically they’re at a disadvantage and Nick Ellis is a total longshot to play unless Talbot loses a limb.
PULJU TO FINLAND
The Oilers loaned Jesse Puljujarvi to the Finnish men’s team so that he can play in the World Championships in Paris and Cologne. I suspect he’ll be reunited with his old World Junior linemate, Sebastian Aho. Too bad Patrik Laine is taking the tourney off. It would be something to watch this trio play after a year of pro hockey.
Speaking of the Men’s World Championships, keep an eye on Swedish defender Rasmus Dahlin. He’s 17 I believe and is the youngest player to play on the Men’s team in half a century if I’m not mistaken. He’s eligible to be playing in the u18’s that are going on right now to put it into perspective. Some will compare Dahlin to Erik Karlsson or perhaps even Paul Coffey but they don’t do him justice because he’s basically doing what McDavid did to his opposition in junior but Dahlin is doing it versus men in the SHL.
Enjoy the Oilers game tonight folks! It’s going to be a beauty! McDavid is going to break out tonight and Edmonton is going to be electric!