Season Finale GDB: Oilers @ Flames
A personal note before all the GDB shenanigans:
It’s been a month since my last blog (28 days to be exact). Ignoring the fact that this organization has all but killed my love of hockey, the last 45 days or so have been some of the busiest and most productive days of my life. At the advice of some mentors, I decided to take a step away from ENS and other extracurriculars to pursue my own financially feasible company. Not that ENS wasn’t pumping out hundreds of cents for your boy (shout out to my advertisers!), but the emotional ratio no longer felt positive nor productive enough for me to continue. I love writing for the diehards, but when writing about these incompetent shitbags became more of a burden than a fulfilling habit it was past time I reevaluated where I wanted to go with this freelance blogging thing. After a comprehensive perspective, I’m still not sure. I want to care about the Oilers, but the truth is I just don’t right now, or at least not enough to consistently write about them. And after doing some freelance and contractual social media work for clients I’ve started to realize that I like doing that a lot more than I like sitting down for a few hours per day and dumping my energy into an organization that either refuses to or is allergic to change. For the first time in a long time, I’ve really enjoyed my work. I don’t know where this leaves ENS, to be honest. But not devoting my time to the Oilers has been borderline therapeutic. One day, this team will be great again, and we’ll all rejoice. Whether I’m still writing about them or not, I hope that we collectively can feel this together at one point or another. And damn it’s going to feel good when we finally do. Anyway. My personal rant is over. Time for the fun.
Another pathetically disappointing season ends tonight. I don’t even know where to begin with these assholes, but to steal a quote from King Connor: “We have a lot of crap to figure out.” It’s not enough for them to fire the lot; the OEG needs a complete reset, and Daryl needs to prove that he can build a consistent winner in a market desperate for success, and he’s done nothing to make me believe that this is possible. The OEG under Daryl Katz has been an organization built on the foundation of nepotism, so there’s no reason to think that things will change, even after our notoriously quiet captain fired a skud missile directed at everyone with ties to the franchise. Until I see something tangible, I cannot and refuse to believe that we’ll have any positive organizational change in direction.
However, today is a BoA, and I defer all my hate for Daryl’s Army when it comes to this. I don’t care if it’s game one or a meaningless game 82: I always want to beat Calgary. This won’t be my last blog (Oilerz Awards coming up soon plus the inevitable ‘we won the lottery again suck it NHL’ blog next week) but I’m pretty sure this will be the last GDB I ever write. If so, I can’t think of a better group of chin-up-less assholes to write about than these idiots. So this one is for the diehards. This one’s for the fans like Hal and Blaine and Najib and Ben and Eric and Adam and Jake and the entire Hamilton family and Chels and Casey and AJ and Morgan and Grant and all the others I forgot to mention. THANK YOU for always reading my ridiculous shit. THANK YOU for all your unconditional support over the years. And THANK YOU for being the reason why I wrote my ass off despite this team kicking the shit out of my emotions. Let’s beat the fucking Flames.
*dusts off rearview mirror*
*sees six teams not named ‘Flames’*
To be fair to Milhouse, I’m pretty sure we all believed this back in 2013. Oh, how things could have been different if competence was in our water instead of Tobias Rieder am I right?!
Fuck Daryl Katz and the OBC with every ingredient of Bob’s overpriced burger.
I’m guessing this:
L50N – Connor – Kassian
Lucic – Nuge – Chiasson
Rieder – Cave – Rattie
Gambardella – Gagner – Currie
Klefbom – Larsson
Nurse – Russell
Benning – Sekera
Look, other than beating Calgary the only thing that really matters is L50N tonight. I’d actually argue that the latter takes priority here. Not that I don’t love beating the Flames, because I do. But the reality is the majority of us have never seen an Oilers player score 50 or more goals in a season. Most of the Oilers we grew up with haven’t scored 50 in two years, nevermind one. Leon will score his 50th tonight, I promise you that.
Alex Petrovic will sit out for a 24th consecutive game, meaning we traded a 3rd round pick to my arch rivals for nine games of Alex Petrovic. On the scale of awful Peter Chiarelli-isms, this one would be right up there with the worst of them had it not been for like all of Peter’s other trades. I’m not even sure where it ranks, but man that trade stunk. Imagine losing a trade with Dale Tallon? Haven’t even mentioned Brandon Manning’s non-existent AHL healthy scratch ass yet. Peter moved Drake Caggiula, Jason Garrison, and Chris Wideman in two different transactions and somehow lost those trades.
Otherwise, whatever. Here come the Oilers. LOILTY.
Gaudreau – Lindholm – Neal
Tkachuk – Backlund – Frolik
Mangiapane – Ryan – Hathaway
Dube – Jankowski – Czarnik
Giordano – Brodie
Hanifin – Hamonic
Fantenberg – Andersson
Calgary’s not holding back tonight. With the exception of Mayonnaise, all the regulars are in (Monahan is a game-time decision, according to Peters). Sammy Chin-ups is out with an upper body injury.
Mayo sitting out means James “you really hate to see that 5-year, $28.75 million dollar deal” Neal slides onto the first line. Jim has seven goals and 19 points in his first season with the Flames. Even fucking Lucic has 20 points.
Speaking of points, future Flyer Johnny Lady Byng has 98, so getting L50N and keeping Johnny away from a century should be our only two concerns tonight.
Mike Smith is starting in goal. Mike Smith sucks.
Calgary is in the playoffs and we are not. For the 12th time in 13 years I will be rooting against teams in April instead of cheering for the Oilers. Basically, anyone except Calgary can win the Cup. If it’s Calgary v. Toronto in the finals (it won’t be, but we run on hypotheticals here in Edmonton) I’m buying a Mitch Marner jersey and cheering my ass off for the Leaves. Calgary could play Dallas or Colorado in the first round. Regardless, I’ll be cheering for whoever they play against. I will do this until they’re eliminated, after which, I’ll retire on my non-existent porch with a fat cigar and an ounce of cold Calgary tears on the rocks while I patiently wait for the Oilers to “figure their crap out.” By no means is it ever acceptable to cheer for the Flames. Everyone who “cheers for a Canadian team because CANADA!” deserves to be shot into space in the same cannon as Peter Chiarelli. I get no pride in other teams winning anything. There’s nothing special about a Canadian team winning the Stanley Cup before us. This isn’t the Olympics: This is a matter of personal fandom and fuck everyone who isn’t us really, but especially the other Canadian teams because I want us to be the first team since 1992 or whatever to do this shit and if we can’t celebrate glory then why should anyone else? They wouldn’t cheer for us, so dammit I will not cheer for them. So go Colorado, or Dallas, or San Jose, or Nashville, or St. Louis, or Boston or Tampa or Washington or Carolina or Pittsburgh or Columbus or New York or even those undeserving assholes in Vegas. One day we will be great, and everyone else can suck our butts.
Also if you’re like me and you can’t stand watching another team not named “Oilers” winning the Stanley Cup then tune into the NBA playoffs because I need the Raptors to win the Larry O’Brien trophy more than I’ve needed anything else in my life. I could use the emotional support as the Raptors take me on another eventful ride through the playoffs. I might cry if they lose. I will cry if they win. Regardless, this is my plea for help. Even if you hate basketball, do it for me Jesus Christ. At least keep me in your thoughts and prayers because god dammit I need all the T’s and P’s you got.
As mentioned, I’ve already guaranteed a 50th goal fore L50N tonight, so he at least gets one but probably three because Connor and Leon love to punish the Flames. Connor is four away from 120 so he gets five. Johnny gets none. 5-0 Oilers. Let’s end this disastrous campaign by crushing our rivals into the playoff appearance. Eat shit, Calgary. Let’s go.