Oilers buried by Avs

Colorado Avalanche goalie Peter Budaj makes a save against the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday. (Sun...

Colorado Avalanche goalie Peter Budaj makes a save against the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday. (Sun Media/Brett Gundlock)

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI -- Sun Media

, Last Updated: 9:29 AM ET

Well, Oilers fans, how did you appreciate that?

There's no such thing as a good time to drop a big fat stink bomb in your own building, but some times are definitely worse than others.

And Fan Appreciation Night is definitely one of them.

On a night when the crowd at Rexall Place would have greatly appreciated an end to the club's 11-game losing streak, the Oilers made it a dirty dozen.

With management handing out prizes in the stands, the Oilers took care of the giveaways on the ice in a laugher of a loss to Colorado that was every bit as bad, if not worse, than the 5-1 score would indicate.

COULDA BEEN WORSE

It could have been 10-1 if the Avs, who play here again tomorrow, didn't call off the dogs.

Don't expect the NHL to ring the Oil up this morning and tell them it wasn't a loss.

"I'm not going to take any questions because there's not a lot of commentary needed on that game," said MacTavish, who proceeded to make a 79-second statement that summed the evening up perfectly.

"It was disappointing on a lot of levels. On Fan Appreciation Night we got schooled in a lot of areas by a team that's playing very well right now.

"We were inefficient in all three zones. Offensively we didn't get anything done. We didn't threaten much. We turned the puck over. The first shift was maybe the best indicator of things to come - we turned the puck over, I think, three times in the first 13 seconds of the game.

"When you're at a decided skill disadvantage you want to make sure you play a smart game and we started off not playing that way.

"And our biggest weakness was our inability to defend. I don't think we got a stick on a puck below the goal line tonight. We vacated the dangerous areas of the ice and it was disappointing on a lot of fronts. I'm just going to leave it at that."

Nothing more to say.

The Oilers, outscored 44-11 in the 12-game skid, will try again tomorrow night.

"I'm sure they'll be better," said Avs winger Andrew Brunette, trying not to sound too condescending. "They just got off on the wrong foot. They're proud of what they wear on the front of their jersey and they'll play better."

That's a safe bet, because they can't possibly play any worse. With all of Calgary hoping the Oilers would rise up and stem the Colorado surge, the hosts were toast before the contest was five minutes old. And Colorado, 9-0-1 in their last 10, closed the gap on the eighth-place Flames to four points. Like Calgary needed another reason to hate Edmonton.

"We got running around in our own zone," said Shawn (minus-3)Horcoff. "I don't know how many odd man rushes they had. Four on threes ... too many quality chances. They had a lot of really easy tap-ins.

CAME OUT HUNGRY

"They came out hungry, they needed the win, and it showed."

Ian Laperriere made it 1-0 at the 89 second mark and less than three minutes later, with the Avs outshooting Edmonton 8-1, Joe Sakic made it 2-0. At one point in the first period, the shots were 13-2 Colorado. By the end of the second it was 5-0.

Worst game of the 12?

"How do you pick a worst one,"said Horcoff. "Let's face it, they're all pretty bad."

Of note was Patrick Thoresen's goal, which snapped his 53-game scoring drought.

"I just put one hand up because the result was what it was," he said. "There was not much to celebrate."


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