SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers 'have done a good job'

Edmonton Oilers' Jordan Eberle (L-R), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Ryan Whitney and Taylor Hall celebrate...

Edmonton Oilers' Jordan Eberle (L-R), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Ryan Whitney and Taylor Hall celebrate Nugent-Hopkins' winning goal against the New York Rangers during the second period of their NHL hockey game in Edmonton October 22, 2011. (REUTERS/Dan Riedlhuber)

TERRY JONES, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:11 AM ET

EDMONTON - So the nine games are over. And nuthin’.

The Edmonton Oilers just knocked off the only undefeated left in the NHL, the 7-0 Washington Capitals, to go 5-2-2, take the Northwest Division lead and sit third in the Western Conference standings.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins made it nine points for nine games and his line with Taylor Hall and Jordan Eberle scored both Oilers goals in a 2-1 win and ...

And nuthin’.

The Nuge, who heard “Noooooooge” chants that almost equaled the “Khabby! Khabby! Khabbi!” chants for the old goalie who was even more responsible for the result than the young kids, ended the night still not having been told that he was going to play his 10th game tonight in Colorado, the game which would insure he could no longer be sent back to junior.

Forget sending him back to Red Deer.

What about breaking up the line?

“It would be pretty silly,” said Hall.

“We’re going at a goal-per-game pace right now.

“There aren’t a lot of lines in the NHL going at a goal a game pace.

“We’ve got a lot of chemistry going on the power play. And the chemistry continues to come together.

“We’ve taken it here so far after playing together for a couple pre-season games together and then gettinfg back together after the first couple games. We’ve changed out games a bit to fit each other,” added last year’s No. 1 pick who scored his second goal of the year.

Pretty silly is mild.

Try absurd. Asinine. Brainless. Illogical. Inane. Irrational. Ludicrous. Nitwitted. Preposterous. Senseless. Simpleminded. Witless.

The numbers after nine games are numbing.

The young Oilers line has scored 10 goals.

Nugent-Hopkins has five.

Eberle has three.

Hall has two.

The rest of the team has scored seven.

It’s the same story in points.

Both RNH and Eberle are point-per-game players with nine each after the first nine games. Hall has eight.

That’s 26.

The rest of the Oilers have 22.

While they produced their points on the power play Thursday night and were on for only their second goals-against of the season, the trio also leads the team in plus minus.

Hall is plus four and Eberle and RNH plus three.

No other Oilers forward is better than plus one.

So what’s this about?

Why did it go down to last night?

And why did it go to the plane, which Nugent-Hopkins boarded with the rest of the team?

Is this because of some pre-planned episode for that “Oil Change” TV series or something? What are we missing?

Before the game, Washington coach Bruce Boudreau had the line of the year when he was asked about Nugent-Hopkins.

“I think they should send him down before tonight’s game,” he said.

When it was over and the kids had scored twice as many goals than Alex Ovechkin, Nicklas Backstrom, Alexander Semin and company managed, he made a serious statement.

“They are good. From the blue line in, they are good. They move their feet all of the time and they are energetic. If they stay together ....

“They are good now.

“They are going to be really good in a year or two.”

Eberle, who scored the other Oilers’ goal this night, said it’s a pretty good line getting better.

“The more and more we play together, the more and more we get better and better, and that’s big.”

But Nugent-Hopkins had to stand in front of the media one last time and say answer the question, “Have they told you?’ one more time when the game was over.

“No,” he said.

Coach Tom Renney didn’t make any announcement in the post-game interview room, either.

“We’ll see,” he said.

“They’ve done a good job,” he said of the line.

“I haven’t spoken to the player. I’m hoping to have a word with him before too long,” he said — perhaps before the player and coach climbed on the plane.

Game-time decision?

Maybe Taylor Hall picked exactly the right word.

Silly.

Follow me on Twitter.com @sunterryjones

terry.jones@sunmedia.ca


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