Oilers Forgot All Star Break Was Over
Total Pro Sports – The Edmonton Eskimos lost to the Buffalo Bills 10-2 on Tuesday night…if this was an actual scoreline there would be nothing to worry about, but unfortunately it was the Oilers that lost to the Sabres. Mentally the Oilers were still on holidays as they were able to do nothing right but manage to throw a ton of shots at Ryan Miller.
The Sabres failed to score less than 3 goals in any of the periods and Drew Stafford led the way scoring a hat-trick in the 10-2 rout. Sadly the game was played at Rexall Place where the fans were, I am sure not pleased with the effort. It is clear that this team has alot of maturation to do, the level of consistency is not where it needs to be. They do not have the leadership in that locker room that resembles a playoff calibre team.
When Pronger decided to depart for warmer temperatures the void for a No. 1 defenceman was filled by Sheldon Souray. In my opinion Souray is old NHL, clutching, grabbing, hooking, holding, he does not have the foot speed to keep up with some of the best forwards in the game. Although he has a great shot from the point and is a power-play specialist, he is not a No. 1 defenceman in the NHL.
The Oilers later decided to trade away Captain Canada, the heart and soul of the Edmonton Oilers, based on a contract difference of approximately $500,000, whether the Oilers thought it was time to move on is debatable. They then traded away key role players like Raffi Torres and Jarret Stoll, guys that will not put up 80+ points but do all the little things that playoff teams need (winning face-offs in your own zone, taking the body, good fore-check).
So what do we have left, a veteran goalie that seems to play well from time to time, a bunch of highly skilled forwards that need time to develop, third and fourth liners that have a hard time staying healthy (Fernando Pisani, Ethan Moreau, Zack Stortini), and a coach that cannot motivate his players to raise the enthusiasm on a nightly basis.