Saturday, June 17, 2006

Oilers kick ass, consider taking names, realize they don't have a pen, continue kicking ass

Wow, as Coluch so eloquently put it in the comments to the last post. Wow wow wow. What a resounding win. This isn't even forcing game seven. This is demanding that it happen.

There are just too many good things that happened tonight to talk about, but I suppose the biggest difference was the first powerplay, when the Oilers finally decided to take this party downstairs and freak the Canes right the fuck out with the down-low play of Hemsky, Samsonov and Smyth. It didn't result in a goal, but it concerned Carolina enough that they pulled back off the point to protect the net, thereby reopening Prongs for the big shot. Not that we needed it tonight; sure we tore it up on the PP, but it was all forwards, alllll niiiight long.

Holy hell, I'm ecstatic. Kudos to the entire Oilers defence; the woefully lopsided shot count (34-16) is a testament to the outstanding work they did tonight. And big ups to Greene and Tarnstrom, the supposed weak link tandem that played 10:11 and 17:49 (!) respectively. Greene looked like a younger, more talented Jason Smith out there, while Tarnstrom continued to man the left point as the Oilers' failsafe outlet pass. I'll admit to being impressed and/or concerned by Carolina's decision to play some mindgames and start Erik Cole tonight, but thankfully, he played exactly how you would expect one with an injury such as his to play — with great trepidation and little effect.

Maybe it'll come to me after a night's sleep, but goddamn it, I really can't think of an aspect of the Oilers' game to criticize tonight. This was probably the most solid, complete and effective effort I've seen from any team in the entire playoffs, hands down, and if I was the Hurricanes, I would be sincerely concerned about Monday night. I mean, I'll be honest: I was a wreck tonight. I came into this game terrified of what may come, spending the entire evening wringing my hands and not in the least bit enjoying the game lest I jinx the Oilers (while my friend Ken chastised me and chanted "shutout" to no end, much to my disdain). But from what I've seen here... well, Hurricanes, I hope you've realized that you're anything but guaranteed this Cup, not matter what Becketts puts on its cover.

Okay. I'll reel things in a bit and say that I still think that Monday night is a coin toss — in fact, it's probably more like 60-40 Carolina due to home-ice advantage. But how could you not feel encouraged as an Oilers fan by their performance tonight? This was decidedly their game. It was theirs, and they took it with authority. Now all that remains to be seen is whose game Number 7 turns out to be.

Honestly, I don't know how you could be a fans of sports in general and not be cheering for the Oilers right now. Carolina, they're just a team like so many good but unremarkable Tampas and New Jerseys and Colorados before them. For them to win the Cup is so ordinary, so dull and expected that one wonders how anyone could derive joy from it at all — for Carolina to win the Stanley Cup is to merely experience the hollow victory of being proven technically correct.

But the Oilers in this year, in this run? They're a concept, an ether, a collecting mist of hope and desire for things that exist far outside their grasp. These Oilers are the beating heart of fandom itself — the sudden, expected realization that, regardless of statistics, regardless of history, the seemingly unattainable is there for whomever wishes to have it more.

God, I love cheering for this team. Now to worry about how I can get out of work for Monday.

UPDATE: Just occurred to me that I totally forgot to mention it tonight, but I finally was reminded of why people think so highly of Dvorak. I can't even recall the last time he played so much as was so consistently THREATENINGLY OFFENSIVE all night. You can tell he's sick of this shit and wants a goal. That's the man I needed to see.

Thanks to Alana and her misfiring flash for the ghostly victory image!


Anonymous said...

ahhhhhhhhh, so nice to be unemployed on a day like today and monday :)

*kisses mom and dad's housekeys*

Coluch said...

Hmmm, if the Oilers are an ether perhaps next year the catch phrase will be "Get Ethereal!!!!"

Also, I can't stop laughing at this photo when I imagine that Torres was the only one that knew it was being taken, and decided to ruin it... and to a lesser dregree, Pronger being that kid in elementray school that always had a dripping nose and never looked good in a photo.


RiversQ said...

Dvorak played an excellent game tonight. He carried the puck more than I've seen him carry it in awhile. Of course, I've been carrying the torch for him as well... Albeit with less fanfare than Sacamano.

Dave said...

Game six top 10:

Defense tighter than a prison shower room arsehole.

The nifty change-up on the power-play, taking things in tight by the net – and an effective power-play overall.

Pisani, and his beautiful backhand.

Smyth, and his beautiful backhand.

Oiler confidence throughout the *entire* game.

Laviolette’s crimson-faced meltdown.

The utter inconsequence of Cole’s return.

Footage from last game of MacT telling Hurricanes fans (who were obviously heckling his bench all game) where to go: “seven”.

Joey Moss’ inspiring, if brain hemorrhage-inducing, anthem performance – his unabashed enthusiasm screams volumes.

Cam Ward’s “save” – yeah, he’s Carolina’s goalie, and technically the puck was over the line, but that’s good effort. More importantly, though, the Oil’s resounding answer to it moments later. BAM!

mnavarre said...

Laviolette’s crimson-faced meltdown.

Oh, God. That was beautiful. I fully expected him to burst something and start spraying arterial blood everywhere.

As for Cole? Putting a guy that got turned into a bobblehead 3 1/2 months ago into the lineup just screams "desperation move".

I kind of get the feeling that the 'Canes are more beat up and broken than we know. They came out with that same deer-in-the-headlights look in their eyes that Detroit and San Jose had late in the series. And getting stomped like rats probably ain't helping their mental outlook any.

Paul O-the O stands for Sports said...

While Dvorak looked dangerous, it's still ahrd to forget that this is the guy who is more likely to put it 10 feet wide of the net than in it. In that sense, carolina fans really should have nothing to fear. They should, however, fear just how dangerous Sammy has looked since playing with him and Stoll.

Also, Game 7 should feature a Rem Murray and Erik Cole bobblehead night. I keep waiting for them to collide and two heads to roll onto the ice.

bluebloodrunsthick said...

Hmmm... what do I smell... is it fear in the eye of the great Hurricane???! Yes I think so... the way the Oil dominated from start to finish was incredible and I can't remember any oilers team to do this since the haydays and I'm really confident going in to gm7. Funny tonight... no Dougie(how fitting) and Cole drawing in-total desperation move-not bad in the first but then dissapered... our boys were great... they are so determined and hungry it's great to see... yea I thoght Lavi was gone turn into Lava! this is it guys... one more griity road win and we got it ALL. Wow x 1,000,000... this is awesome!!!

And on a negative note. Something personal actually. I was at a firends hosue for the game. Was like 6 of us... we all went to walk down Jasper Ave afterwards... it's really close... we all have a great time... but then at about 103 Street & jasper by commerce PLace I see a cop in a van(stopped on the street corner due to crazy ass traffic)who is telling me stop that(I jumped and hit a street sign and did no harm to anyone)... then all of a sudden they stop their van and the coppers jump out and proceed to arrest me. Yea assh*les took me down to the ground face first and I got a huge welt on my forehead. They peppersprayed right before they put me in the van... then we wnet to the station wher they not much friendlier even though I was cooperating. Peppersprayed me again in the cell just for fun(cop said punks like me should die for celebrating Oil wins.) Fu*ker anyways after about two hours of spraying my eyes out with water and in really bad pain they put me in a main holding cell and then let me go. I got a cab home from downtown... now I'm still burning and can't believe that ouyr cops have turned into tyrants.

Also, when I got out i called a buddy who is partying with me and he said that my arrest was later broadcast on CityNews Cable 7 in Edmonton. He said he tried to get the camera away and then talked to his Dad afterwards who is a lawyer and his Dad said that I can technically sue the City of Edmonton for defamation of character and CityNews for releasing video that could be damaging for my character as well.

Not sure what to think of all this as I sit here 5 in the morning and in pain trying to enjoy the biggest win by the Oil this year.

p.s. sorry the length of this and I would appreciate you blogsters reading this maybe giving an opinion based on experience if any on what I could do in terms of damages for tonight.


Eduardo Costa said...

"Honestly, I don't know how you could be a fans of sports in general and not be cheering for the Oilers right now. "



Dad said...

Hey Chris, what an awesome game, mom even volunteered to cut the lawn so I could watch it. Now that's a great woman. I think they have Carolina on the run and scared to hell. They play this solid money and the Cup comes to Canada. They will not let down this time as they did in the 5-0 wipeout. Go Oilers Go. Call me today. PS Do not miss work!!

d-lee said...

sincerely concerned? How 'bout GRAVELY concerned.

The Canes looked terrible last night, and it's gonna take much more than home ice advantage for them to turn it around.

They're more hurt than they're letting on, so it won't be as easy as bouncing back from a game like this in the first round.

I hope I'm wrong, but the way things have gone since the second period of game 5, it doesn't look good for the Canes.

I don't agree with putting Colesy in the lineup, but it might give the team a spark once they get back to Raleigh.

Good luck tomorrow.

Prus said...

Honestly, I don't know how you could be a fans of sports in general and not be cheering for the Oilers right now.

For me it's the same reason Dave and others couldn't cheer for the Flames when they made it this far two years ago. But while he and others minimized what the Flames did, i'm perfectly content to say that the Oilers have a good team and have played well.

A win on Monday might just kill me, but i'll survive as it's only sports and the next chance to capture the cup is just 2 weeks away...or will be by the time this season wraps up.

Anyway, that's how I can be a sports fan and not cheer for the Oilers right now. Well, that and I used to love the Hartford Whalers for reasons i'm not entirely sure of.

case said...

*this is the story of the hurricanes,
broken necks and shoulder strains*

this team is more banged up than brind'amour's wife when he's outta town. old potato face didn't look too hot last night. i hope hedican't plays the whole game on monday. torres is the new tikkanen. we looked like the best team to ever step on the ice last night. i think pronger has a magnet on his stick that keeps it from going over the blue line. i hope mact gives the carolina crowd seven middle fingers next game. goil!

mudcrutch79 said...

I like to think of this blog as sort of a running sitcom. Chris!'s dad is far and away the best new character of the season.

Anonymous said...

Yeah, he's a character, all right. Letting mom mow the lawn....

Happy father's day, dad!

Anonymous said...

I can't believe there's a guy who yells "shutout", nearing the end of a shutout. That's bugging me 24 hrs later and a couple provinces west of this "Ken"
Dvo did look really good last night would like to see a repeat performance on monday.Was at the game last night and it was, needledd to say, unreal. We really are the best fans (pats self on shoulder)
Echo also your point about Berg and Tarn.
GOILERS!!!!!! on Monday


DrFrankLives said...

I would think fans would appreciate the passion and dedication of other fans, not belittle them as mere automatons attached to some automatic, predictable victory machine. I realize the delirium of Game VI probably affected your sanity a bit, but you just described my Carolina Hurricanes as an expected winner of the Stanley Cup.


This team has done it the hard way all year. Nothing has been without heart palpitations for the Caniacs. Brindy and company have my heart on a string and they continue to play YoYo tricks with it.

I have no idea which team that was on the ice against the Oilers on Saturday. Pitiful. Embarrassing. Obscene. I knew something was wrong when Moreau didn't get buried under a pile of retribution for his headhunting cheapshot on Cole in the first period. I knew then they didn't have it in them.

I hope it gets them angry.

Regardless, you're coming into our house tonight. And, if there is a God who cares about me, you will not leave happy.

I ask for a good, well-played game full of passion and athleticism. I ask for NBC to actually realize that the fans in the RBC Center are great fans for reasons other than tailgating and "Redneck hockey". I ask Emrick to shut up and let us sing both national anthems, like we have been doing since the beginning of the playoffs.

I have enjoyed your blog. One thing is for sure, you guys are not Buffalo fans.

Bring on Game VII. Erik Cole is back and the boys are (or had better be) pissed off and ready to play.

Anonymous said...

oops i meant greene n' tarn

Anonymous said...

>>But the Oilers in this year, in this run? They're a concept, an ether, a collecting mist of hope and desire for things that exist far outside their grasp. These Oilers are the beating heart of fandom itself — the sudden, expected realization that, regardless of statistics, regardless of history, the seemingly unattainable is there for whomever wishes to have it more.<<

That was well-written. And it perfectly describes Carolina in 2002. But the problem is, it's NOT attainable for lower seeds. This is the way it works: low seeds don't win the Cup. They get TO the Finals - see Florida, Washington, Carolina, Anaheim, and Calgary in just the last decade - but they don't win it. I appreciate the literary quality of the ether and all that, but the two-month grind usually comes down to the prosaic variable of who has home ice, which in itself is determined by the marathon of the regular season, which plays out on merit and talent, not ether and mist.

And besides, teams have to start a legacy sometime. There's nothing ordinary or predictable about raising that first - even only - Cup.

Great blog by the way. It made watching the games a little easier knowing that our counterparts went through the same sleep deprivation, career and relationship neglect, superstition mania, and downright insanity.