Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Don't Forsake the Oilers, or God Will Forsake You

Life in Oiltown has been pretty god damned sour since the 07 trade deadline (actually it started before that but let me get to my point before you shoot down my poorly constructed introduction). The Oilers traded away Ryan Smyth for Nilsson and O'Marra, then in the summer traded the promised one, Joffrey Lupul after an extremely subpar year (or average depending on how you crunch the numbers). Finally, not even Michael Nylander would sign with the club, even after saying he would, choosing the Washington Capitals (!) instead.

I used to say that Smytty was hockey Jesus and when he wanted to talk to his father he would look up high into the lights of the rafters and signal the man upstairs...Lowe. Well I don't know if it's Lowe or God or just karma but those that hath forsaken Edmonton have had some plagues blasted on their asses...or such.

A couple weeks ago, Joffrey Lupul (public enemy number 8 or so, behind Pronger, Comrie, etc) took a much publicized hammering from, off all people, his teammate, the apparently not so useless Derian Hatcher (public enemy number 4 in Edmonton...well that hit probably dropped his wanted status down to 15 or so). Firstly, what the hell was Hatcher thinking, he hasn't layed a hit in YEARS, probably because he's too slow to line anyone up. Then when he finally decides to thrown down he nails his teammate, giving him a bruise to the freaking spine. What a champ.

I'm sure other Oiler fans like me (sadistic ones) cracked just the smallest smile when that happened. I mean, I hope Lupul is eventually better, but he was having a great season and making all of us doubters look like morons. Nothing like a little freak injury to set that bastard back in his place! (I'm joking of course...).

Next up we can talk about Ryan Smyth. I think disappointment is probably an appropriate word in terms of describing his performance this year, which dipped from regular to poor thanks to injuries. I think it's far too early to say Lowe was at least correct in assessing Smytty's games/year potential, but certainly Smyth's year is not looking up. Out till mid February, his centerman Joe Sakic is out even longer. Ouch.

Now finally we come to Michael Nylander, the man who despised Edmonton so much he went to the (former) murder capital of North America. I mean, honestly, how bad can cold weather and perogies be? This was a really strange situation, and I'm not sure who's to blame - Kevin Lowe, Michael Nylander, Michael Nylander's agent, or the sweet alluring puppy dog eyes of Alexander Ovechkin, but this was simultaneously a slimey and welcome move. The slimy is obvious, (how can you make a deal with one team and then somehow reneg on that deal, it's like a mini-Pronger move), but the welcome is the fact Nylander is no replacement for Ryan Smyth and is a move in the wrong direction for this team.

Now of course if there was any real justice in life Pronger wouldn't have a Cup, Lowe might not be fired but he certainly wouldn't have a contract extension, Smyth would be playing for the Oilers and Ty Conklin would've been playing like a madman in June 06 rather than now.

But as LT has said many times, this year is about moral victories.

Coincidentally, the Oilers are playing the Caps tonight. Check out Japer's Rink and A View From the Cheap Seats, because besides the fact the Oilers get to see those snappy new Caps jerseys, many Capitals bloggers have been given press passes because Ted Leonsis believes in the power of blogging. I wonder if Katz feels the same way?

Fun Fact: The Washington Capitals refuse to pay overnight shipping to equipment manufacturers, preferring to save money by having products sent ground.

1 comment:

Scarlett said...

I did enjoy Hatcher's hit on Lupul. It was pure and joyful retribution for a year of laziness with the Oil.