Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Pouliot's Chance and Homestand Breakouts

And so Marc Antoine Pouliot gets the call. And with Hemsky likely out for at least a couple of weeks by the sounds of it he has a chance to stake his claim to a permanent job with the big club.

MacT was mulling starting him with Sykora tonight but who knows if he will and if he does, if it will last but this is the kid's shot and I think he's ready. If you check out the baby Pens' games his name was showing up on the scoresheet constantly. Multiple point games. Big goals. He has been on a tear and good for the Oil for not bringing him up and having him sit and waste away in the PB. He played some minutes on the fourth line last year and did alright. He needs to play either the same role or a greater one with the Oil now. Sitting in the pressbox will do him no good.

There are a few guys whose lives are going to be impacted here. If Pouliot can't do anything with Sykora then Stoll gets his shot with him. As a guy who has been passed by Sykora and Reasoner on the depth chart for centres right now, Stoll is becoming more and more the odd man out to me. If he continues to be a special teams guy first and foremost then he'll be on his way out of town (for Tom Preissing?) for a new start somewhere else and the centre alignment will be Horc, Sykora, Reasoner, MAP. If Stoll does get going then he may end up centring Hemsky and Sykora which means Toby moves down to the fourth line or to the PB.

Worse case Pouliot sticks as the fourth line centre which means five fulltime rookies on this club. I think he does it.

Before this homestand I remarked that this was a chance for some guys to break out of some lengthy slumps.

Horcoff has a goal and three assists.
Pisani has a goal and four helpers.
Lupul has two and two.
Reasoner has three and one (although he wasn't so much slumping as not getting opportunity)
Bergeron has two and two
Torres also has two and two

The one guy who has done little, the aforementioned Stoll who is at one and one.

And of course the Oilers have nine out of a possible ten points so far. Dennis at IOF figured 5-1-1 was what the expectation for this homestand should be. So a win tonight (four pointer as they say) and against the Jackets keeps them in first heading on the road.

And hopefully with Hemsky out some of these guys keep producing because if they don't ...

its a short trip from first to worst at this point.


Anonymous said...

pouliot didn't seem to do too much, but then again i stopped watching after 5-2. was pretty invisible i thought. interesting that the only plus player on the night so far is j. smith, who has been the worst all season. down 6-2. ugly. i think that this is what can happen to the oil when the don't get the goaltending. the d looked horrible tonight, the overall defensive play was horrible, everything after the lupul goal has been pretty horrible. couldn't take it. their shortcomings have been masked by roloson's play of late. their record unfortunately i think flatters them a little. lowe needs to make a trade soon or the oil could easily tumble right into 9th or 10th. i am on the ledge again. fragile confidence in the team.


SweatyO said...

Well, they're still on track for 5-1-1 even with tonight's egg. Considering they dodged two bullets against Detroit and Calgary, they probably had this coming.

There is ZERO excuse if they were to lose to Columbus on Saturday, especially after....well, THAT.

Mrs Gertrude Inkpen said...

It seems M. Pouliot is on pace for for a 58 point season.

Go Marc-Antoine Go!

Black Dog said...

Interesting that they had good runs twice, faced Anaheim and then in the following game after facing the Ducks got smoked - classic let down games

Scarlett said...

Good call Dog! It's nice they have another game at home, especially against a nobody team that they should beat. Let's hope this gets them back on track and not into another losing streak.