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01-16-2012, 11:39 AM
  #27
CanadianHockey
Smith - Alfie
 
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Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: Petawawa
Country: Canada
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Oh Edmonton. Where to being.

Offensively, we look like we should be fine on paper. Legitimate top line. Legitimate supporting players. Decent bottom-6. So... what's the problem? Our best leaders and best paid forwards, Horc and Smyth, are inconsistent to say the least. Add to that the injuries that plague Hemmer every year, the injuries to our trio of young kids, and the injuries Horc and Smyth will naturally sustain as older players. There's just not enough consistent, healthy players and most of the non-big 3 prospects are not ready to make the jump to push those guys.

Defensively, we're missing a #1D. Whitney, our best defenceman, has struggled with injuries all year. Smid and Gilbert have been excellent. The other guys are inexperienced (Petry, Peckham, Teubert, Chorney), injured (Barker), or suspended (Sutton), and thus are unable to fill the void. Potter has been a pleasant surprise. Furthermore, the team struggles at times with the breakout - the Oilers have traditionally been a defensive team since the 80s, and lack great puck moving defencemen.

In net, Khabi started the year bailing out our defense game in game out. He's since dropped back to his standard level of play, which isn't good enough to cover for the defensive inadequacies. Dubnyk has not developed enough to warrant replacing Khabi on a full-time basis as the starter, so there aren't many options.

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