Wednesday, December 05, 2007

There Is Something In The Air Tonight, Fernando

There are good hockey players and there are famous hockey players and there are those who are both.
Tonight one of the latter plays his third game of the season, his first at home.
Fernando Pisani was always one of those unsung guys, a low draft pick, a hometown boy who made the local team and played a good solid game. A professional player who did all of the little things necessary to help his team win.
This all changed in the spring of '06. Whenever the Oilers needed a big goal, more likely then not it was Pisani who was scoring it. Two goals in the third period of G6 against the Wings. The game winner, shorthanded, in OT!, in G5 of the Finals. A third period goal to bring the Oilers within one in G7, a near miss to tie it.
If Ryan Smyth had had Fernando Pisani's playoff he'd be an Oiler for life.
This summer Pisani became famous for a different reason as it was revealed that he was suffering from ulcerative colitis, a disorder that threatened his career and, possibly, his life.
Tonight he is back on Edmonton ice for the first time this season. Here's hoping that the crowd gives him an ovation that he will never forget.
And here's hoping that the Oilers continue on their roll. Eight of their last twelve and a couple of winnable games left this week. My expectations honestly remain low but the kids have pulled themselves out of the basement - they are playing fun hockey and they are winning and its nice to see. They're working hard and they deserve it.


Vic Ferrari said...

Fernando looks really strong on the puck already. I thought it would take him longer to find his form, or that his strength would be down a bit.

A nice story, and this team needs him to be playing and playing well. Hopefully we see him moved to the Torres/Stoll line soon.

Black Dog said...

There was one shift last night where the Pens sent out Crosby, Malkin and Staal I believe and MacT countered with Torres/Stoll/Pisani. This was in the 2nd and the draw was in the Oilers' zone. They cleared the zone, got it deep and then cycled it for the entire shift. Crosby didn't even touch the puck.

Then MacT went back to Stortini in the 3rd on that line. Having Pisani babysit the kids certainly cuts down on their issues but Fernando may have been the difference in the third - I think on the Letang goal Stortini was out of position.