Morning After Blog: POOL PARTY FEVER
Two years about, we drafted this spectacular specimen fourth overall. It was one of the greatest days of my life. I watched this adult-sized child walk up on the stage without much of a damn clue of what exactly was going on. His very first word as an Edmonton Oiler was “uhhhhh.” One massively prolonged vocalized pause. That’s how he began his career as an Edmonton Oiler. From there, we’ve watched him grow. Whether it be doing that hockey on the ice, or having some fun (intentional and unintentional) off the ice, Jesse was transitioning from goofy Finn who can’t speak a lick of English to goofy Finn who can take over a hockey game and still can’t speak a lick of English, right before our eyes. And last night… last night was his (our) Mona Lisa. I don’t have children and I hopefully will not for at least 5-10 more years, but I imagine that those feels and emotions I was going through last night were the same if not more than how parents feel when they watch their six-year-old score have his or her first big game in Tim Bits. This is, unequivocally, the best moment of my career as a self-employed Oilers blogger. This was everything I had ever been waiting for. Jesse Puljujarvi. Three points. First star. 98 in our programs, but a big old ball of fun in our hearts. Jesse forever.
Full disclosure: I am ferociously hungover.
The boys came out of the gate/bye week ready to play. Literally. As they were showing how historically terrible the Oilers have been on Hockey Day in Canada, another terrible thing — his name is Jake Virtanen — coughed the puck up to the one person you never want to ever cough the puck up to.
After Connor poked the puck free from that humongous idiot Virtanen, he played a little give and go with the Big Rig like it was 2016-17, and then naturally Markstrom let it in. I’d like to point out that for some inexplicable reason, Jake Virtanen ended up on his ass by the end of the play, twirling on the ice like the fucking fidget spinner he is in an effort so preposterous it makes the Kris Russell starfish look like a viable defensive technique.
And then nearing the end of the frame, just as a Canucks penalty expired, this:
Some of the boys went to Mexico during the bye. Others maybe visited their home towns, seen mom and dad, reconnected with some friends, etc. One player, who shall remain named (it was Jesse) flew back to Edmonton for his week off and spent a few days practicing his profession at the ODR. I can safely, 100 per cently say, without any hesitation, that him dangling Henrik Sedin AND…… wait for it……….. JAKE MOTHER FUCKING VIRTANEN into literal orbit happened because of his commitment to playing shinny hockey during his time off. That’s an Art Ross and a Hart Trophy winner he just used as a fucking traffic cone, and then also one of hockey’s most villainized busts who for some illogical reason was still spinning like the coin from Inception. Hey, Jake. That technique. It’s no good, pal. Your haircut stinks. I’ll never forgive you for Team Canada. And you once tried to run Connor at the rookie camp. Utica called, they want their forward back.
Well we gave up that two goal lead in a HURRY. But before the end of the period (again) it was that big ol’ goof to the rescue:
IT’S JESSE TIME.
This. Guy. Fucks.
Are you kidding me with this game?!
That give and go though, WOWSA. Draisaitl buried his first one timer since the playoffs and Jesse just grabbed his third point of the night. At this point I had lost all control of my bodily functions. Nothing could prevent me from diving in one. Like Jesse, there was no stopping me. It was over. Same with this game. Jesse for goddamn ever.
Pat Maroon completely disregarded Jesse on the empty netter but he still scored it and so that means:
5-2 Oilers, final. Go home, Vancouver. You’re drunk:
*TGW (that gut when) Jesse Puljujarvi has for more points than Jake Virtanen in 11 less games.
YOOOO I know it doesn’t feel like it with the week off and everything like that but that’s three straight FAM!!!
So next year everybody is skipping Mexico and going straight to the ODR during bye week, right?
The best part about Jesse absolutely bringing it is that we can collectively look back at all the idiots who prematurely labelled him as a bust and blissfully give them the middle finger:
I don't I have faith in Puljujärvi. I think he'll bust. It's between the ears. Not one for one.
— Marc-Olivier Roux (@MarcOlivierRoux) November 23, 2017
Because Jesse Puljujarvi is a bust and miller is a 50+ point player
— Бучневич мой папа (@CommunistBuch) November 9, 2017
There actually is 12 forwards better then Puljujarvi he’s a bust so far and I’m an Oilers fan saying that
— Matt™ (@BrahmaBullYT) October 2, 2017
I just have this feeling that Jesse Puljujarvi is gonna bust for some reason
— Pourquoi?! (@tsarigor) September 4, 2017
And the temperature of those takes reads: HOT.
Live look at what the Edmonton Oilers do to the Pacific Division:
I may never forgive Pat Maroon for his blatant disregard of Jesse soaring down the middle for that open net. Two goal game with 30 seconds left and Patty tucks ‘er in by himself from the mother fudging blue line instead of feeding Jesse for the kid’s second goal and his first career four point game. Unbelievable.
On the other hand, Patty now has 13 on the year thanks largely to Connor McDavid. If there were a way to keep the Big Rig and trade Lucic I’d be all for it but that’s not the world we live in. Nothing is fair.
Death, taxes, and the Oilers hiring former players to partake in shenanigans:
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) January 21, 2018
A “Skills Development Coach” (!!!)!! What in this world is that, exactly? Did we have a “Skills Development Coach” before? Was this a position that preexisted and we just fired Tom from “Skills Development” and there was a job opening there? Never (not anytime ever) has there been an organization that makes up fairy tale positions for former players because, gosh darn, it’s the old boys club amiright let’s party like it’s ’83! I’d like to be a pimp from Oakland or a cowboy from Arizona but it’s not Halloween. Skills development coach, my god. I still have no clue what Messier does other than perpetually bombard Connor’s voicemail.
The year is 2030. Shawn Horcoff is the Oilers head coach. Steve Staios is the GM. Curtis Joseph is the Goaltending Coach. Ethan Moreau is the Assistant GM. Ryan Jones is the Fun Activities Development Coach. Cory Cross is the HR Director and everyone treats him like Toby Flenderson. Wayne Gretzky is the Assistant Owner. Harrison Katz sits in that gargantuan monstrosity of a private suit, by himself, with a pet cat, as he watches over the team he’s now inherited. It’s 6-1 for St. Louis in the second. We’re 25 points out of a playoff spot. It’s November. Our jersey, a half orange half blue eye-gouging shit vest, gets tossed on the ice from the SkyLounge. Connor plays for the Seattle Sea Lions. He was traded there by Staios because the team was still looking for a stabilizing 1/2 defenseman. We acquired Cal Foote in the deal. The trade was one for one.
And then we wake up from that disturbing nightmare and remind ourselves that Jesse was born and genetically created to be an Edmonton Oiler. From the 2016 draft:
Jesse Puljujärvi about Columbus snub: "I don't mind. Edmonton is a real hockey town."
— Sami Hoffrén (@shoffren) June 25, 2016
You’re damn rights it is, son.
Let’s play: “Did Leon Draisaitl understand anything that Jesse said to him?”
Judging by that sneaky little grin at the end there, I’d give it a hard nope.
I was already incapacitated and nowhere near my laptop and/or a TV with volume by the time the Jesse v. English interview took place following the game, so sadly I cannot comment on it/embed it into the blog because I can’t find it either so, ya. Bummer. However, I imagine it was comedic gold, and I bet that Jesse tried his darndest to say anything other than just ‘yep’ the whole time, because nobody works harder than my boy Jesse.
Oh and the team is getting him an English tutor 1.5 years into his Oilers career. Fact: We hired a Skills Development Coach before we hired Jesse an English tutor.
Gator’s Grinder AND Most Outstanding Player of the Game
The one, the only: Jesse Puljujarvi. Too infinity, and beyond (that’s a quote from his favourite movie, Toy Story, with Tom Hanks and Tim the Toolman). This guy. He fucks: