Editor, White Cover Magazine
The minute that five-minute overtime ended, the game was over. The minute you realized the Sedin Twins had made their last appearance, that Roberto Luongo was valiant in defeat but not in shootout defeat, that Dale Weise had played almost the entire third period on the Canucks’ top line, that Jason Garrison would not be given the puck on the powerplay despite that being the exact reason he was brought to the West Coast… that was the minute you realized the Edmonton Oilers were going to win this game, that Vancouver had a long season against them, and that they really, really, REALLY should have beaten the Boston Bruins two years ago when they had the chance.
The Canucks played well enough to deserve their 2-0 lead, and then they let Edmonton back into it. And, no, they didn’t beat themselves. They just gave it away.
But, give the Oilers the credit they’re due. They played hard and they took advantage of their opportunities — something the Canucks clearly failed to grasp or achieve.
The entire Edmonton roster has only known an NHL where shootouts are the way games are decided. Jordan Eberle, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Taylor Hall, Nail Yakupov, Sam Gagner, and even Justin Schultz… it’s all they’ve ever known.
Even Ales Hemsky — one of the club’s only remaining veterans who has now survived two lockouts — is tailor made for this NHL. He’s one of the most talented players in the world. He’s more sure-handed than anyone in a Canucks sweater, despite the magic the Sedin Twins are obliged to weave on occasion.
As soon as overtime ended, the Edmonton Oilers had this baby all sewn up.
And, I’m not talking about the game. I’m talking about the Northwest Division.