(image of Oilers logo here)
I'm writing this from someone else's house and they don't have a handy jpeg of the Oilers logo so I've chosen to put into action that age old adage (not a palindrome) of "a bunch of words paint one picture." Use your imagination. The way I do when I picture the Oilers in the playoffs.
Okay. So first of all, I just learned that He Score, He Shoot is not just a Leafs blog. I know I know, the colors of the logo, the tagline, heck, the vast vast vast majority of the content is Leafs-centric. It makes me feel like less of a fan than Greener or Norte, not that this is a competition, though if it were I think we could agree it would be a tie. It makes me self conscious about how passionate I am about the team I love. Perhaps we as fans unconsciously take on the characteristics of our team? Is it just that the Oilers are lazy or have lives? Are the Leafs a way more passionate if somewhat lonely and sad group of players? Well that doesn't matter, both teams have stunk most of the year. The point is, I'm busy, get outta my face.
I wanted to write today about the Oilers last game. I actually wanted to write on friday when I watched thursday's game on tivo but I wound up spending two hours reverse scouting the 2010-11 crop of NHL 08 draft picks for my Oilers who are, by the way, gunning for their third straight cup. Here's the thing, the Oil played the Kings. Two teams way at the bottom of the league, two teams that have lost an awful lot of games, two teams with twenty game death marches to another summer of thankless off season training. "Dead Teams Walking!" And, it was an exciting game, back and forth, no defense whatsoever, end to end and lots of scoring. The hockey equivalent of a Rocky fight. But it reminded me of why I heart the Oilers so. Here is a team that has no chance at the playoffs and according to the various on ice player interviews at yesterdays skill competition they know it, but they came out and played their hearts out and hit and scored and tried. Watching the Kings I saw the opposite. These are two teams used to losing but the way they behaved when things weren't going their way was the polar opposite. The Oilers go up early and the Kings disappear until a series of unlucky bounces puts the puck in the Oilers net. Then they start to show up a little. The Oilers go up again, the Kings disappear again. I think its in these difficult times that you see the character of your team. The Kings know a loss is coming as soon as the other team scores, the Oilers don't say die even though they aren't playing for anything. That's all I want to see. Effort. At this point, with their first round lottery pick which you KNOW is gonna be #1 going to the Might Ucks (D omitted to imply swear) and their playoff hopes dashed and at last count 95% of their players injured they still bring it.
I'm looking forward to tonight's game against the jackets. I know it doesn't matter, they could win and it wouldn't make a difference, but I know they are going to try and I know they are going to put on a show. The Jackets are a team they've had trouble with all year and I think it'll be fun to watch them try and switch that up. That's all that matters. I think the fans forget its just a game as much as the players do. That its supposed to be fun. Well it is fun right now. And I can't wait.