Oil Spill On Aisle 49!
The ice will be so tilted in Vancouver’s favour Tuesday night, you may literally feel a rush of blood to your head should you be sitting at the Oilers’ end of the rink.
First off, the Oilers play Monday against San Jose, a game they should lose on paper. Edmonton has lost 3 in a row going into that game, so regardless of Monday’s result, the Oil should be gassed.
In addition, the Oilers are so far removed from the league of the Canucks and the one they claimed to be in at the start of the season.
Remember when they were in 1st place? I bet Oilers fans do; just like they seem to recall those Cups in the 80’s all the time.
Seriously though, if Edmonton loses Monday vs. San Jose, they will go into Tuesday night’s matchup with the Nucks 24 points behind them in the standings. Either way, the Oilers will be in 13th place in the West, and at the very least 16 points out of a playoff spot.
Their fall from grace this season specifically was inevitable. Their young core of budding superstars is bound for greatness but it just was not meant to be this year. The Oilers will once again have a very high draft pick to add to their already burgeoning prospect pool.
On a high note for them, Jordan Eberle was named to the ALL STAR GAME Monday to replace the injured Minnesota Wild forward Mikko Koivu.
What else is happening in Canucks land though going into Tuesday night’s 4th game of a 6 game homestand?
What the Heck is Up With Tanev?
Jeff Patterson of the Team 1040 tweeted Monday
Does this really make much sense? No!
Tanev didn’t leave the game early on Saturday so he’s not injured; that’s for sure.
The Chicago Wolves are playing in Abbotsford Tuesday and Wednesday night, so he will play those two games. The question is does he get called up again afterwards?
The entire thing is strange; why put him in a top four role for one game if you’re just going to send him down?
Salo On the Up and Up
A cautious coach would and SHOULD say, “You know what Sami; it’s a concussion so why don’t you just sit out this last game before the all star game, and you’ll feel that much better afterwards!?”
It seems to me like he’ll be in the lineup Tuesday, barring any setbacks and I really don’t think that’s a good idea.
However, @vancanucks did tweet after practice Monday
Safe to say The Fragile Finn will be back in the lineup and who the heck knows about Chris Tanev?
It should be noted that Keith Ballard and Aaron Rome practiced as the 3rd pairing, so Alberts and Sulzer can chomp on some popcorn up in the pressbox.
Loberto Ruongo will get the…
If trends mean anything, the Canucks have got this game in the bag, just going by recent goaltending. Bobby Lu of course started the season slower than drying paint while Nikolai Khabibulin was vintage Bulin Wall. However in the last 20-27 games or so, those two men have done a 180 performance wise.
I know this because I have both Lu and Khabibulin in separate pools and my rankings have suffered all the same.
If you follow me on twitter @vancan19, you will very well know that I have a massive man-crush on Cody Hodgson and often refer to him as “muh boi” or MY BOY. I haven’t written as much about him as much as I would have liked to but allow me to just say this now: Cody Hodgson is a stud and I couldn’t be more happy for him proving everyone wrong; namely Alain Vigneault.
Obviously it’s really difficult with the depth at center the Canucks have to put Chinook where Kesler is but at the very least, and I know this has beaten like a dead horse; he should somehow be given a lot more ice time. He averages less than 13 minutes per game and that is solely because of AV’s hesitance to trust the kid.
Saturday night Cody had 2 goals and the Sharks had an empty net for about a minute to end the game. Was Cody Hodgson on the ice? NO! If I could give Viggy’s head a shake, I certainly wouldn’t resist.
Getting Up For It
I ranted last game that all the Canucks had to do was get angry to win against the Sharks and for the most part, they did what they needed to do to win.
That being said, these guys never seem to get up for teams that are beneath them. It’s like their mothers never told them to not stoop to someone else’s level if that level was say, disrespectful.
Alas, the Canucks continuously do it. With losses to teams like Carolina and Columbus this season, they have only themselves to blame should they not win the division or place as high as they like after Game 82 has been played.
Edmonton is young guns team and they’ll never admit it, but they’ve likely packed it in for the season.
No, 16 points isn’t insurmountable as Canucks fans know from a few seasons ago when the Canucks caught the Flames for the NW Division Title from down 14 points, but they just don’t even look close to turning it around.
Fan support is there of course, and I never doubt the heart of the Oilers, but it’s all but said and done and the Canucks have to capitalize on that. I do break it down and give all these keys but really, the Canucks just have to get up and play their game, and they will win Tuesday night.
BEST BET TO WIN: OBVIOUSLY VANCOUVER!
Puck Drop is at 7PM on Sportsnet Pacific.