Leafs vs Oilers - To Be Played in Quebec Next Year

SkinnyFish
December 14 2010 11:56AM

Last week it was the 54 best teams in the East who suited up against the Leafs. This week it'll be the 2 worst teams in the West before a HNIC showdown with Vancouver on Saturday. In what is being called the West Coast Waffle week (WCW for you wrasslin' fans), the Leafs take a tour of lovely Western Canada with stops in Edmonton, Calgary, and Vancouver.

Previous meetings with the Oilers and Canucks ended in blowout losses to both with scores of 5-0 and 5-3 respectfully. The Leafs-Flames game on Thursday will be their first meeting this season and captain Dion Phaneuf's first game in the Saddledome since getting traded last season. But the Leafs can't afford to look ahead to that as tonight they face the young Oilers who already have a taste for Leafs blood and are eagerly looking to get out of the draft lottery.

After an incredibly slow start, the Oilers are 6-3-1 over their last 10 games and definitely playing better hockey than their record would suggest. The injury sustained by Captain Shawn Horcoff led to Youtube star Linus Omark getting called up and he dazzle in his first game with a shootout goal that Dan Ellis didn't find humorous at all.

Also with his callup, Omarks becomes the 4th player on the Oilers' lineup to have been drafted by the team over the last 4 years. A great example of why drafting is so important to team development. If it wasn't for their atrocious goaltending and defense, this would be a team to watch out for in the next 2 to 3 years as being a Cup contender.

Thankfully Tambellini is a moron and has no idea how to run a team. Maybe when the Oilers change their locale and move to Quebec City they'll change their GM as well and finally stop being a perennial bottom feeder.

The Leafs are like the bizarro version of the Oilers. A young team build around a solid defense core but lacking a respectable offense. With Phaneuf's return, the team has gone 1 and 1 with an embarrassing loss to a better Philly team and a hard fought win against the Habs.

Mike Komisarek and Brown remain out with injuries though it's Brown that the Leafs miss most right now as his work ethic and self sacrifice provide great examples for the young players to learn from. Phil Kessel ended his goal scoring drought on Saturday but would need to score a hattrick tonight to get back onto a 40 goal pace for the season; which is what he needs to do to justify his much maligned trade in 2009.

In net tonight it's a battle of the old bones as J.S. Giguere takes on Nikolai Khabibulin. Both are shells of their former selves though and likely in their last year(s) of playing in the NHL.  Giguere's decline has been fully exposed this season in Toronto and has been ongoing since his Stanley Cup win with the Ducks in 2007.

As shown below, since then he's career save percentage has falling by .010 % from .922 to .912. Which is a whole lot over 3 years when it factors in 500+ career games.

Yeah, not good. Hopefully Giguere can stop his decline and just play "average" for the rest of the season. If he continues playing as a .900 goalie and gets a fair amount of starts, then the Leafs will finish in the draft lottery. He needs to be better; hopefully he can be.

Tonight I'm expecting pucks to go into the net with ease and ending up 5-4. Who will the winner be? No idea, but a Leafs win would be nice.

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#1 quicksilver ballet
December 14 2010, 01:00PM
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Only 6 more years till the Leafs can celebrate that 67 Stanley Cup again.

Hey, why don't you guys offer Kadri for Stamkos again straight up?

derp derp derp derp derp derp derp herpa derp derp

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#2 Gibberish
December 14 2010, 03:43PM
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How is this even an arguement?? Saying the Oilers have no defence and no goaltending after getting blanked by them two weeks back speaks volumes on how inept the Leafs are. Leaf fans shouldnt be the ones throwing stones here considering the only folks that can remember an impending cup in Leafs Nation are pushing 70.

Is there any rhyme or reason to the Leafs development? Burke says he wants to win now but has spent way too much on the backend. How can you expect to win paying your 5th defenceman $4MM per? Especially when you look at the roster and you can tell they will have trouble scoring.

Say what you want about the Oiler management and their past failures, but their plan makes total sense. The Oilers are no where near the cap even though money is not an issue. They are letting their players develop and avoiding the temptation spending big money on free agents who would block said development. I would say they have way too many kids on the roster to be a winner right now but winning right now isnt the be all end all, improvement of the kids is.

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#4 sloppy joe
December 14 2010, 02:22PM
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Surprising number of oilers fans trolling your site. I'm an oilers fan, but I am not intending to troll

In response to Pension Plan Puppets:

(1) I agree that our defence is terrible, but I disagree that we have 0 goaltending prospects and 0 defence prospects. Dubnyk is coming along very nicely as a goaltending prospect and, over the past couple of years, decent UFA goalies have been easy to come by (though both the oil and leafs did poorly with their UFA selections). So ... I think we have a decent tender in the wings, but we can buy one in the future anyway. Defence is of greater concern. Whitney's arguably a top 2, Gilbert's a 3-4, and hopefully peckham and belle will develop. We'll have to do something through trades or FA to shore this up, but I acknowledge that will be tough.

(2) Tambo and Lowe are both retarded, but so is Burke. No point arguing over who has the worse GM. Tambo will be gone by the time the oil are good in a year or 2.

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#5 Byron
December 14 2010, 02:47PM
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Belle is doing amazing in the AHL along with Petry. Martin Maricin is doing very well in the WHL. Three solid prospects. And Peckham is a nice surprise.

Toronto fail.

And hey, if we suck, at least well get a great pick this year. Too bad you can't say the same. Why don't you start winning some games so we can draft a bit higher? Stop helping Boston.

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#6 jeanluc
December 14 2010, 03:10PM
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Byron wrote:

Belle is doing amazing in the AHL along with Petry. Martin Maricin is doing very well in the WHL. Three solid prospects. And Peckham is a nice surprise.

Toronto fail.

And hey, if we suck, at least well get a great pick this year. Too bad you can't say the same. Why don't you start winning some games so we can draft a bit higher? Stop helping Boston.

BOOM....game,set and match

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#8 Doug Otway
December 14 2010, 01:05PM
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The Oilers will be the fist to score on the leafs tonight just like an Oilers fan was fist to post a comment about your maple laughs. Let's Go Oilers!!!!

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#9 Bak04
December 14 2010, 01:16PM
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Being an Oiler fan I have to suffer through watching the young Taylor Hall creativity and pure speed. Oh if only the Oilers had hired Burke to trade away our first round draft picks (picks=this years as well) for some kessel-like player, as kessel will lead the leafs to the playoffs, he did last year, right??? Enjoy another decade of terrible hockey teams and pure stupidity leafs nation

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#10 Elock Wisbow
December 14 2010, 01:34PM
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"Thankfully Tambellini is a moron and has no idea how to run a team. Maybe when the Oilers change their locale and move to Quebec City they'll change their GM as well and finally stop being a perennial bottom feeder."

Hehe. Hehehe.

I'm sorry, but in comparison, the Oilers management is a Utopian civilization compared to the hell the Toronto higher ups have caused for their own organization. I am not a fan of either club, but it's always been fun learning what that wacky Burke has been doing to your hockey team's future. Over-valuing should be Burke's motto.

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#11 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:38PM
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quicksilver ballet wrote:

Only 6 more years till the Leafs can celebrate that 67 Stanley Cup again.

Hey, why don't you guys offer Kadri for Stamkos again straight up?

derp derp derp derp derp derp derp herpa derp derp

Right, 1990 was just yesterday.

As for the second part, did your drool hit the wrong keys? Again? The worst part of the Nation sites is Steve Lansky. The second worst part is that it's the home of the idiot Oilers fans.

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#12 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:39PM
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Doug Otway wrote:

The Oilers will be the fist to score on the leafs tonight just like an Oilers fan was fist to post a comment about your maple laughs. Let's Go Oilers!!!!

Maple Laughs. How clever. I'll go one better: The Maple Leafs will beat the Coilers and their fans that think a short 10 game run of non-failure is a mark of an impending Cup.

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#13 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:40PM
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Bak04 wrote:

Being an Oiler fan I have to suffer through watching the young Taylor Hall creativity and pure speed. Oh if only the Oilers had hired Burke to trade away our first round draft picks (picks=this years as well) for some kessel-like player, as kessel will lead the leafs to the playoffs, he did last year, right??? Enjoy another decade of terrible hockey teams and pure stupidity leafs nation

If you were literate I'd point you to the Copper and Blue where you can read all about Kevin Lowe and Steve Tambellini's shortcomings and failures.

I'm happy to know Edmonton has players like Taylor Hall so that their fans can build themselves up just in time for Tambellownie to mess it all up.

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#14 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:42PM
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Elock Wisbow wrote:

"Thankfully Tambellini is a moron and has no idea how to run a team. Maybe when the Oilers change their locale and move to Quebec City they'll change their GM as well and finally stop being a perennial bottom feeder."

Hehe. Hehehe.

I'm sorry, but in comparison, the Oilers management is a Utopian civilization compared to the hell the Toronto higher ups have caused for their own organization. I am not a fan of either club, but it's always been fun learning what that wacky Burke has been doing to your hockey team's future. Over-valuing should be Burke's motto.

Unfortunately, they don't give Stanley Cups for arguably being better in comparison to the Maple Leafs. Your system has 0 defence and 0 goaltending prospects.

It's been fun for us watching Lowe and Tambellini flail about trying to sign UFAs like Sheldon Souray and Nikolai Khabibulin. It gives me great comfort knowing those two are the ones making the decisions for the Oilers because it guarantees they won't make anything out of consecutive bottom-five finishes.

Can't wait to see what muted return they get for Ales Hemsky or to watch Dustin Penner walk in two years.

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#15 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:44PM
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It's funny that Oilers fans think that a President and GM combination that made the Oilers bottom feeders while trying to win and maxing out the cap are suddenly going to become good cap managers and evaluators of talent just because of Eberle and Hall.

I pity the intelligent Oilers fans because they at least have a clue.

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#16 Truth
December 14 2010, 01:49PM
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I have an idea, instead of bickering back and forth how about everyone just shuts up and we see who is the better team in 4 years...too obvious?

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#17 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 01:51PM
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Truth wrote:

I have an idea, instead of bickering back and forth how about everyone just shuts up and we see who is the better team in 4 years...too obvious?

Sounds like a plan. You get your idiot Oilers fans to shut their traps and we'll wait to see what happens. Until then, we'll reply.

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#18 ehcg
December 14 2010, 02:00PM
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@Pension Plan Puppets

I dislike Tambellini as much as anyone does and I agree that he is a horrible GM and the praise he gets for having the amazing vision to waive a couple of obvious problem players is pretty laughable.

However, 0 defence and 0 goaltending prospects is probably stretching things considering Petry is currently 4th in AHL scoring with a +/- that is constantly increasing after a bad start due to adjusting from college hockey. Plante is also becoming very solid and reliable defensively. Olivier Roy, another Oiler prospect, is likely to be Canada's starting goaltender in the World Juniors this year.

The problem isn't really our lack of defensive prospects, it's our lack of willingness or ability to spend money on solid veteran role-playing defencemen while those prospects develop.

All that being said, good luck tonight. I don't particularly care if we win games this year, I'm just looking for entertainment.

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#19 ehcg
December 14 2010, 02:47PM
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@SkinnyFish

Can you not tell the difference between our replies to PPP's comments that we have no defensive or goaltending PROSPECTS and your evaluation of our current NHL talent? I would agree, our NHL level defense is embarrassing (although our prospect goaltender is doing much better out of the two)

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#20 Wax Man Riley
December 14 2010, 03:33PM
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@ The Leafs

"Thankfully Tambellini is a moron and has no idea how to run a team. Maybe when the Oilers change their locale and move to Quebec City they'll change their GM as well and finally stop being a perennial bottom feeder."

Ummmmm.... Hey kettle? This is the Pot.... you're black.

Wow! Really? because how many cups have the leafs won since '67? Hmmmmm.... oh ya none? How many conference or Stanley cup finals have they been to in the last decade? Hmmmm... Oh ya! None!

EDIT: Oops. Lost to Hurricanes in '02 Conference final. Shame on me.

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#21 Wax Man Riley
December 14 2010, 03:40PM
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Pension Plan Puppets wrote:

Unfortunately, they don't give Stanley Cups for arguably being better in comparison to the Maple Leafs. Your system has 0 defence and 0 goaltending prospects.

It's been fun for us watching Lowe and Tambellini flail about trying to sign UFAs like Sheldon Souray and Nikolai Khabibulin. It gives me great comfort knowing those two are the ones making the decisions for the Oilers because it guarantees they won't make anything out of consecutive bottom-five finishes.

Can't wait to see what muted return they get for Ales Hemsky or to watch Dustin Penner walk in two years.

Zero Goal and Defense prospects? Really? Look at the WJC Team Canada Roster. Didn't Blacker and Ross just get cut?

And I think there is a goalie by the name of Roy that is looking to be the #1. What team has his rights again?

Good luck Laffs! See you at the game!

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#22 Wax Man Riley
December 14 2010, 03:42PM
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sloppy joe wrote:

Surprising number of oilers fans trolling your site. I'm an oilers fan, but I am not intending to troll

In response to Pension Plan Puppets:

(1) I agree that our defence is terrible, but I disagree that we have 0 goaltending prospects and 0 defence prospects. Dubnyk is coming along very nicely as a goaltending prospect and, over the past couple of years, decent UFA goalies have been easy to come by (though both the oil and leafs did poorly with their UFA selections). So ... I think we have a decent tender in the wings, but we can buy one in the future anyway. Defence is of greater concern. Whitney's arguably a top 2, Gilbert's a 3-4, and hopefully peckham and belle will develop. We'll have to do something through trades or FA to shore this up, but I acknowledge that will be tough.

(2) Tambo and Lowe are both retarded, but so is Burke. No point arguing over who has the worse GM. Tambo will be gone by the time the oil are good in a year or 2.

HeeHee.... especially #2. Props to you sir.

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#23 Ethan Kortbeek
December 14 2010, 03:58PM
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Toronto is full of a bunch of buttholes, they are just mad that everything there sucks buttholes. Also dion is a butthole and belongs in TO. Burke? Butthole...and borderline retarded. I don't think anyone at oilersnation is really expecting the oil to win much this year...unlike here where all you toronto dummies think burke sh*ts gold.

Well eat up sanchez.

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#24 Wax Man Riley
December 14 2010, 04:04PM
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Ethan Kortbeek wrote:

Toronto is full of a bunch of buttholes, they are just mad that everything there sucks buttholes. Also dion is a butthole and belongs in TO. Burke? Butthole...and borderline retarded. I don't think anyone at oilersnation is really expecting the oil to win much this year...unlike here where all you toronto dummies think burke sh*ts gold.

Well eat up sanchez.

^^

Not representative of all Edmontonians. Just the rednecks.... ok so then not representative of the other 30% of Edmontonians.

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#25 ItsTheBGB
December 14 2010, 04:10PM
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HAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHA, Leafs calling the Oilers a perennial bottom feeder. You guys have sucked since the millenium.

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#26 Mark-LW
December 14 2010, 04:14PM
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Dubynk is a 24 year old goaltender with a .920 save pct

Olivier Roy is in contention for the starting job at the world juniors

Jeff Petry is 5th in all rookie AHL scoring, 4th of all defense

Martin Marincin is leading all defense in the WHL in scoring as a rookie

Theo Peckham is establishing himself as a tough fifth d man, who I'm sure you'll notice tonight

Right now the Oilers do have some lugs in regards to Vandermeer and Strudwick and to a certain extent Foster, but there are a lot of positive indicators for the Oils future.

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#27 Doug S
December 14 2010, 04:18PM
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It's been forty years since the leafs have won the cup. It looks like it will take another forty to figure out how to build a winner. Maybe the fans one day will open there eyes and realize you can only win through the draft like the the oilers are doing. Thanks for giving boston another good draft pock for the mediocre and selfish kessel.

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#28 Doug S
December 14 2010, 04:20PM
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Hall with a hat trick, Kessel -4

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#29 Rexall Robots
December 14 2010, 04:36PM
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@PPP

Although you make some interesting points in your rebuttals to Edmonton fans, it's worth looking at the prospects from both teams and see who will form the nucleus in two or three years.

The Leafs have very serviceable prospects at forward such as Kadri, Ross, D'Amigo, and Hanson to go along those who have (at least somewhat) established themselves at the NHL level in MacArthur, Kulemin, Versteeg, Kessel and Bozak.

When compared to the Oilers youth movement of Hall, Eberle, Gagner, Paajarvi, Cogliano, and Brule, in addition to prospect such as Pitlick, Omark, Vande Velde, and Hamilton, the Leafs seem to be missing that home-run threat that the Oilers have in Hall. Otherwise, both groups are pretty similar in terms of talent and depth (and don't say that Kessel is equal to Hall, it's not even close).

On the blueline, the Leafs are maybe a step ahead due to the presence of Phaneuf and Schenn, to go along with Aulie and Gunnarsson.

The Oilers prospects hinge on Petry, Peckham, Marancin, and Plante, although Whitney should be a strong presence for years to come. Throw in Gilbert in the right situation, and some additional prospects and signings and the team is looking okay on the backend.

In goal, you can't really argue that one organization is better off than other as both have aging veterans that can still play at the NHL level followed by at least two pretty good prospects for the future (Gustavsson & Rynnas, Dubnyk & Deslauriers/Roy).

If one organization had all this talent, they would Cup contenders in a few short years. Unfortunately for the Leafs, the loss of potentially two lottery picks (Seguin and potentially someone like Nugent-Hopkins or Larsson) will set the Toronto organization back a few more years.

Looking at both clubs, it looks like Edmonton is trending a little ahead of Toronto at the moment, however, that could change with a few bad decisions by either club.

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#30 Wax Man Riley
December 14 2010, 04:39PM
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@ SkinnyFish:

My apologies, you need tildes (~) around your comments for us hardcores. I obviously took that comment seriously. I will redact my hateful statements about this article at Oilers Nation. I see this was all in jest.

Still..... Go Oilers!!

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#31 jeanshorts
December 14 2010, 04:39PM
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05-06: Finished with 5 more points than the Leafs

07-08: 5 more points than the Leafs

08-09: 4 more points than the Leafs

09-10: ........Well we all know how that one turned out.

At least we've got some company way down here in the basement.

Hope you buttered up your waffles!

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#32 jr_christ
December 14 2010, 07:54PM
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Phanny is a pussy... step up and fight if you have something to say.

Leafs are terrible... losers

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#33 jr_christ
December 14 2010, 07:55PM
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Hey, how's your 2nd overall pick... oh wait... sorry

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#34 O'Bill
December 14 2010, 10:40PM
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@Skinny

Plan the parade!!!

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#35 Pension Plan Puppets
December 14 2010, 10:41PM
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How'd the game go Oilers fans? Not as much yapping out of you pups now eh? I forgot you ON kids were the short bus of the Oilogosphere.

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#37 Pajamah
December 15 2010, 09:21AM
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.......captain of the Maple Leafs?

So easy, a caveman could do it!!!

Its a good thing Orr man'd up against MacIntyre again

....sorry, what was that

*Collective Western Canadian facepalm!

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#39 Pension Plan Puppets
December 15 2010, 09:52AM
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Pajamah wrote:

.......captain of the Maple Leafs?

So easy, a caveman could do it!!!

Its a good thing Orr man'd up against MacIntyre again

....sorry, what was that

*Collective Western Canadian facepalm!

Orr doesn't have the benefit of having a guy like Zack "Huggy Bear" Stortini to soften up his opponent's fists with his face. Once he fought he did his duty. He'd already fought MacIntyre. Take pleasure in the fact that Mac caught Orr on an off night and slink back to Oilers Nation.

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#40 Pension Plan Puppets
December 15 2010, 09:53AM
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O'Bill wrote:

@Skinny

Plan the parade!!!

That's pretty fresh considering how amped the Oilers fans are about a bottom feeding team. You guys are miles ahead of yourselves but sure, we're the ones planning the parade.

Enjoy watching the Coilers come back to Earth after their fruitless hot streak.

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#41 brockbirds
December 15 2010, 03:12PM
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To all those Oil fans pointing to Olivier Roy and his supremo status as potential WJ Canada #1... I give you one Justin Pogge.

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#42 ChuckDiesel
December 15 2010, 04:00PM
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Hall and Kessel aren't even close. I think this is the truest statement here, except not the way you intended. Kessel is about to get his 3rd 30 goal season. Hall is still in diapers. I'm sure you also think it's not even close between lets say.... Stamkos and Esposito. quite obviously Stamkos is WAY Better. /sarcasm.

Idiots.

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#43 Rexall Robots
December 16 2010, 09:15AM
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@ ChuckDiesel

Wow! Your wit is outstanding! It's ridiculous to try and compare players one to one as each player brings something different to the table. But if you feel better by calling names and offering up comparisons of Stamkos to Esposito, then you do what you need to do to feel big.

Kessel is a 30 goal scorer. So is Dustin Penner. Two very different players. Unfortunately for the Leafs, they don't have that franchise player (yet) like a Taylor Hall. The kid is only a couple of months into his NHL career and he is already the most dangerous player on the ice for the Oilers (which isn't saying a lot, but he is still head and shoulders above the rest). As good as Kessel is, he is a complementary player that needs to play with another all-star to reach his potential.

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