It is January 10th, 2017 and the Edmonton Oilers, with a win tonight, will be first in the division. Yes that is a true statement. I can’t even remember the last time a game even mattered this late in the season let alone was for first in the division. Whether you want to believe it or not this years version of the Oilers is actually a good team! Complain about individual players, coaches or management all you want but the fact is that the season is basically half way down and the Oilers are not only in the hunt but are a win away from the division lead! How many games will it take for everyone to believe???
As of this morning the Edmonton Oilers sit first place in the Pacific division with a record of 11-8-1 good for 23 points! Sure the team had a bit of a rough go on the road on November but that was to be expected. It sure beats the past few November’s when I already knew who the top three predicted picks were in the next June’s N.H.L. entry draft. Not only did I know but I had opinions on who they should draft and why! Let’s look back.
The Edmonton Oilers are in a slump having gone 2-5-1 in their last 8 games. I, being a fan who has witnessed many a streak like this, am very concerned and very worried. Is this the real Oilers or is it simply a blip on the radar…??? No one knows the answer but I am truly concerned that this team is back to reality and headed back to the basement. I know I should be more positive but how can I be? I’ve watched this team be terrible for so long and it’s only natural that I’m wary of this team and this organization. How could I not be?
The Oilers sit atop the Pacific division after two back-to-back road wins. They hold a 5 point lead over the second place Anaheim Ducks and are one of the only two teams with a positive goal differential. The Sharks have lost 3 in a row and after two wins in a row the Kings are tied for third in the division. The Oilers have one more road game against the defending Stanley Cup Champion Pittsburgh Penguins. They have collected 5 points in four games and are heading in the right direction.
The Edmonton Oilers won a big game last night against the Washington Capitals in a game I didn’t think they could win. The Caps are favored by many to be a Cup contender while the Oilers are…well…the Oilers. They WERE the laughing stock of the league for way too many years. But that was then and this is now!
I made a bet last night with someone last night who is still mad about the Hall trade and critical of the Russell signing. I bet that Lucic would get more points than Hall this season. Do I really think that’s the best bet I have ever made? No, not at all. It was a total fanboy bet – you know why? Because I am a fan. I like to play pretend GM and when the Oilers had 374 glaring holes it was easy. No team is complete and the moves Chia has made, while widely polarizing, have provided a more complete team.