After a long hiatus I'm glad to be back blogging about the Oil. I wasn't going to spending any more time on CBA and anything else in negotiations. I do the Oilers. No transactions to discuss or possible. IN the end it was a long time away.
The Oilers took a positive step forward adding that beast on the blue line Marc Fistric. He is a big body that plays physical and gets nasty. The Oilers don't have enough of it. A local boy coming home is a great story too but the attitude of the other teams coming in will change. I doubt many will think about having a checking challenge with a teammate against Edmonton. Not without paying a price crossing the blue line.
However, the Oilers are a still too small upfront. They need big wingers, size is needed up and down the line up with a physical edge and ability to play. A big center with the same qualities is also missing. This will need to come in time, sooner than later for the Oilers to take the next step and make an impact in the playoffs. The Oilers may have a time to make the playoffs; they do not have a team to compete in the playoffs.
Opening day roster is set. The defense consists of Whitney, Potter, Fistric, J-Schultz, N-Schultz, Smid, and Petry with Peckham not cleared to play. It is unclear if this is injury or inadequate conditioning. The Oilers two goalies will be Dubnyk and Danis as Khabibulin is not cleared to play. The forward group will be Hall, RNH, Eberle, Yakupov, Gagner, Hemsky, Smyth, Horcoff, Hartikainen, Hordicuk, Eager, Belanger, Paajarvi, and Petrell.
With an honest look at the line up. Potter had better be the odd man out for Fistric. In all seriousness the quality of player isn't even close. Judging from twitter Paajarvi and Petrell are odd men out, no argument there.
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A forum poster since 2000. A proud founder and member of the Oilers Army. He contributes to his blog Oilers Republic and to the Oilogosphere. You can follow him on twitter (http://twitter.com/OR_TMC).