I'd be lying if I didn't say that writing about how bad the Edmonton Oilers are wasn't getting old. Every year, it's the same thing. Star caliber players are allowed to regress under a system, coaching staff, and management that have no discernable idea as to what in the hell they're doing on a nightly basis. Justin Schultz, who would probably be a stud defenseman on any other team? He was a healthy scratch during the Oilers' 1-0 overtime loss to the Nashville Predators. Their defense is beyond abysmal. They allow 3.35 goals a game, and yet they're shopping David Perron for a "top center." They have no identity other than "that team who has sucked the joy to play out of Nail Yakupov."
They win games when they're down after the first period only 13% of the time. Their goaltenders are not awful, but they're hung out to dry so much that you're surprised that Ben Scrivens doesn't come out of the tunnel with clothespins on his shoulders. He'll be in net tonight against Jake Allen. Scrivens has a 3.35 GAA and a .887 save percentage; Allen's stats are a world away from Scrivens'. He has a .920 save percentage and a GAA of 2.12.
To say this is lopsided is an understatement. The Blues' goal, as always when playing a team of a significantly lesser caliber (and one that just played the night before) needs to not play down to their level. No taking their foot off of the gas, no coasting through a period.
The Blues outscored the Oilers 17-4 last season. Edmonton has lost eight games in a row and haven't won a game since November 9th, and still haven't beaten a team from their own conference.
David Perron's attitude on the trade rumors that involve him could apply to anyone's attitudes in having to play for the Oilers:
"It's just the way it goes," Perron said. "One more day in the NHL and we keep going. There's always rumours, and obviously it's been more and more the last little while. I'm just trying to stay focused on this team and stay positive."
One day at a time is all that the Oilers and their fans have.