Jim Matheson: Lacklustre Oilers come up empty against Kings
Over the last 20 games against the Kings, the Oilers have won one in regulation. This season, they were out-shot by exactly 100 shots (186-86) by the Kings, reinforcing coach Dallas Eakins’ statement Thursday morning that “there’s a laundry list of challenges when you’re playing a team primed to go very deep in the playoffs.”
Bigger, better. Lots better as the Kings outscored them 12-3 in four games.
John Mackinnon: Ryan Smyth expected to announce retirement on Friday
Asked directly about the 38-year-old Smyth’s retirement, Oilers GM Craig MacTavish would not comment, but he did not deny it was imminent. MacTavish said it would be up to Smyth to announce his own plans.
It is believed he will do so at a 2 p.m. news conference Friday, with an on-ice ceremony on Saturday on Hockey Night in Canada. Smyth deserves a special send-off as much as any Oiler in the club’s history and more than most.
Derek Van Diest: Los Angles Kings took Oilers out of the game early and completely
The win meant little to the Kings, who will finish third in the Pacific Division standings and face the San Jose Sharks in the first round.
But it did demonstrate the gap between them and the Oilers, who are missing the playoffs for the eighth-consecutive year.
“It seemed like every shift, whenever I got the puck there were five white guys in front of me, just a fortress,” said Hall. “They play the simplest hockey, but it works for them and the group they have.”
Even though the Kings are just playing out the string before the first round, it was still 1-0 Los Angeles 27 seconds after the opening faceoff and 2-0 at the nine-minute mark on goals by Anze Kopitar and Marian Gaborik.
Edmonton was excited and enthused to have to old warrior back to complete his career here but with the punishment Smyth had received in his career, spitting out his “Chicklets” and coming back from “surgery” in the hall behind the bench during playoff games, what were the chances of there being a happy ending?
It is expected Smyth will announce his impending retirement at an early afternoon press conference.
baggedmilk: GDB Wrap Up: Kings @ Oilers
Ryan Smyth is the personification of what it means to be an Oiler. The guy was knocked his entire career for being too slow and not nearly as skilled as his heart is big. For years Ryan Smyth was the heart and soul of the team. He was the face of the franchise with a heart of gold and work ethic to spare. Even though he’s not the player he once was, I’m going to miss him. I’m going to miss his involvement in the community and passion for being an Edmonton Oiler. I only hope that his dedication to the franchise will rub off on some of the kids.
Robin Brownlee: LAST CALL: RYAN SMYTH
If the announcement does come tomorrow, I fully expect Smyth to be a mess, just as he was back at the trade deadline in 2007 when he ended up being traded to the New York Islanders by GM Kevin Lowe after contract talks stalled. Heart on his sleeve then. Same now. Smyth loves this team. He loves this city. Never a doubt about that.