Oilers nearing Dirty Dozen in losses

TERRY JONES, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 9:08 AM ET

The Edmonton Oilers need to hire a special effects cartoon sound guy.

“BOINK!”

This is so bad, it's getting good.

“They get one shot in the third period and it goes in,” exclaimed Pat Quinn of a 2-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues.

Goaltender Jeff Deslaurier gets beat on the short side with a wrist shot from the faceoff circle with the only shot on goal of the entire period to lose 2-1 to the St. Louis Blues.

“ZANK!”

They definitely need circus music for the final 90 seconds when defencemen are tripping over the blue line and Deslaurier falling down behind his own net.

But even if you didn't watch the games or even the lowlights on TV on the late sports, this is getting to be slapstick statistically.

There's so many staggering statistics in play that it takes half a column and more just to list the Oilers, uh, accomplishments.

And here's a new one.

The Oilers are one game away from doing what has never been done in franchise history before – lose every single, solitary game in a full month schedule.

It hasn't been done by an NHL team for 12 years!

They have 12 straight losses.

It's Dirty Dozen every which way you look.

Oh-fer-January?

The last team to go winless in a full calendar month (eliminating partial month schedules in October, April and Olympic breaks February) was Tampa Bay in January of 1998 when they went 0-12-1.

Lose Saturday night in Calgary and the Oilers will have gone 0-12 (or 0-10-2 if you count loser

points as ties) for January 2010.

“I don't know what you want me to say,” said Quinn. “It's a fact.”

But, hey. There is that Edmonton-Calgary game Saturday night on Hockey Day In Canada.

The Oilers have lost 12 in a row. The Flames were extinguished in overtime in Phoenix last night to make it nine losses in a row.

“Somebody has to lose,” said Sam Gagner, who could have put this one into overtime if – 'SPFFF!' – he doesn't hit Chris Mason in the crest with a shot the netminder doesn't see.

Too bad the Oilers didn't play more games this month. The most games played in a calendar month without a win is 16 set by the Detroit Dead Things who went 0-15-1 way back in 1977.

You don't find stats like that in record books. You have to call on the Elias Sports Bureau statistical magic men to come up with these gems.

“We obviously don't want to think about those things,” said Gagner. “Obviously they are in the back of our minds. But we're going out there trying to win, not trying to not lose.”

We all know the loss to the St. Louis Blues last night was the 19th loss in the last 20 games. That's an entire quarter of the schedule with only one win.

“There's not a player on this team who doesn't hate it,” said Quinn. “You'd almost figure the odds

would eventually be in our favor.”

The winless streak of 12 sets up the Oilers to go for the team winless streak record of 14 should they fall to the Flames in Monday's much awaited battle for the basement against the Carolina Hurricanes.

Unfortunately, that colossal collision has lost a bit of it's, er, glamour with the Hurricanes winning their third straight game last night to leave the Oilers a full five points out of 29th place.

There's the potential for Carolina, the team which only four years ago played the Oilers in the seventh game of the Stanley Cup final, to move up into 28th place before they get here, leaving the Toronto Maple Leafs, the only team the Oilers have beaten in the last 20 games, to drop down to 29th.

You know that the Oilers have lost 15 of their last 16 home games. The good thing is after next Wednesday, with the Olympic break, they'll only have one home game between Feb. 3 and March 5.

It's on Feb. 14. Set the St. Valentines Day Massacre headline in type now.

At least you're going to get a break from the quirky losing streak within a losing streak of six games the Oilers have lost in a row to team which have played against the Vancouver Canucks the night before. That includes St. Louis twice. The Canucks, booted out of their building for the next 14 games to make room for the Olympics, don't have a home game now until March 13 as they take a 20,737 kilometre tour of North America.

Don't you wish the Olympics were here.


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