Same old, same old.
The Sabres went into snowy Edmonton this evening to take on the Oilers, who were 2-0 to begin the 2016-17 season. From what I had seen from the various media people I follow in the world of the NHL, it sounded like the Oilers were a team that was going to turn heads this season – and why wouldn’t they? Connor McDavid is the new captain of the team and there are so many opinions about whether or not he deserves it or if it’s still too early to put this team’s burden on this kid’s shoulders. Edmonton hasn’t made the playoffs in ten seasons. TEN SEASONS. We think Buffalo is bad, but they’ve only been out of it for five years. Imagine being ten seasons without going to the playoffs…yikes. Then again, we have the Bills to thank for long playoff droughts as well.
The Oilers did not impress me at all during this game. In fact, for at least 95% of the time the game was going on, I think the Sabres dominated them. The Sabres only had one penalty against them and it seemed like every time you turned around, the Oilers were being given a penalty. This may be why we were unable to see the speed of the Oilers with all the young guns they have because of the penalties getting in the way of them playing their game. As a Buffalo fan, I’m happy they were unable to execute any dangerous plays considering the Sabres defense isn’t all that great based off of these two games.
Also, Cam Talbot is NOT a number one starting goaltender so I applaud to you, Todd McClellan, for making it seems like he is it for the Oilers. Poor Gustavsson went in and one of his defensemen pushed his neck so badly that he needed to be pulled from the game based on the opinion of a concussion spotter. That’s another post for another day about how they are now not allowing club spotters to find concussion symptoms in players (by the way, I think the individual spotters are a great idea).
O’Reilly (2), Gionta (2), Moulson, and Okposo all got on the board tonight. I think the O’Reilly-Reinhart-Okposo line is going to be fantastic in Eichel’s absence. You could definitely see the three of them gelling together as the night went on. I just love watching Reinhart play hockey because of his knowledge of the game and his patience with the puck. You can see how he has grown throughout the past two seasons and I look forward to seeing what else he can bring to the table for this team.
I think the best part about the scoresheet tonight is seeing guys like Gionta and Moulson both getting goals early in the season. Moulson’s year last season was a disaster to say the least, and Gionta has been on a downward spiral since his prime years. I know Gionta is not on the team to score goals but it is nice to see the Captain get one every once in awhile. Moulson now being on the 4th line is questionable in order to get his scoring back where it needs to be but if he is also going to be on the power play and get goals (just like my favorite Austrian used to do for the Sabres), then I will take it.
The Sabres take on the Flames on Tuesday at 9:00PM. Here’s to hoping the team can get a nice streak going on this road trip of theirs through Western Canada.