In what was a hard fought and chippy affair, the Minnesota Wild managed to end their season high eight game losing streak by defeating the Edmonton Oilers by a score of 4-3. Edmonton now sits at 0-2 to start their season high seven game road trip and have a record of 2-8 in their last ten games.
With the midway point of the season just around the corner and the Edmonton Oilers mired in a slump that has seen them fall to thirteenth place in the Western Conference, the time has come to look towards the upcoming trade deadline and try and predict what pieces of the puzzle Steve Tambellini would be willing to move. More often then not, the players that are brought up most in trade talks are Ales Hemsky, Sam Gagner and Linus Omark. All three could possibly be moved by the deadline and I would say there is a good chance that two of three will have a new home by the deadline. That being said, the Oilers might just have a card to dangle to teams that are looking to make that move that will put them over the top. That card being goaltender Nikolai Khabibulin.
With Ryan Whitney once again on the sidelines, the time has come for the Edmonton Oilers to seriously contemplate what their next move should be with the talented defenceman. There is no question this team badly needs a healthy Whitney in their lineup but that likely won't happen until next season. As poor as the former Pittsburgh Penguin has played this year, he still remains the teams third or fourth best option on the blueline...which says a lot about the current state of the Oilers defence.
Not only was last night Ryan Nugent-Hopkins first regular season game in his home province but it was also a chance for two young ladies to try and win over the Edmonton Oilers other two young star forwards. Not sure if the two fazed the visitors but it certainly had no effect on the Vancouver Canucks. They seemed determined to come out and rebound from a less then stellar performance in their last game, before the Christmas break. An undermanned Edmonton side were simply no match for the red hot Canucks, who defeated their division rival by a score of 5-3, in what has become a yearly event for the two sides. Vancouver now sits atop the Northwest Division while the struggling Oilers are comfortably nestled in the division cellar.