Oilers Pre-Season

First and foremost: having to listen to a game on the radio because the online streaming server was overwhelmed in the first 8 minutes of the game is lame. Seriously, put it on TV or get a server that isn’t a piece of crap.

And because I can’ t watch the stream, I’m going to pontificate on last night’s 4-1 win against the Calgary Flames.

Patrick O’Sullivan: Won 60% of his faceoffs, scored two goals (including the game winner), and was generally effective whenever he was on the ice.

Penalty Killing: The Oilers penalty killing was pretty shakey last year, but last night the Oilers killed 6 out of 7 penalties. Hopefully they’ll keep that up into the regular season, because a 27th place PK isn’t going to get them into the playoffs. Edit: The Oilers vs. Islanders game is finally working on the Oilers site now, and I was pretty surprised to see some of the guys that were out on the penalty kill. Cogliano, Penner, Hemsky, and Gagner all took turns throughout a 4 minute PK, which was killed off successfully. Hemsky was especially intriguing, because although he hasn’t played on the Oilers PK before, he was very good. He had a few steals that he worked hard for.

Quinn’s System: The Oilers were crashing, banging, and generally a handful to deal with all game long, which I think can be attributed in large part to the new system put into place by head coach Pat Quinn. When the Oilers didn’t have the puck they were throwing bodies around and battling in the corners to get it back, and did a much better job of it than usual. Part of that was probably due to the size of the players that Quinn chose to dress in the tilt, as he shifted away from the small-but-skilled forwards to some of the big boys, and it worked fairly well.

JDD & Devan Dubnyk: Goaltenders Jeff Drouin-Deslauriers and Devan Dubnyk were stellar, and lead me to believe that the Oilers are going to be just fine in goal for a good long while to come, especially as they grow under the tutelage of Nikolai Khabibulin.

Edit: In the Oilers/Isles game, Sheldon Souray has broken the glass with a slap shot TWICE. Holy crap.

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