Why Can't the Edmonton Oilers Win?

Eric LaForgeCorrespondent IJanuary 10, 2010

SAN JOSE, CA - JANUARY 02:  Jeff Deslauriers #38 of the Edmonton Oilers watches the puck go by him on a shot by Douglas Murray #3 of the San Jose Sharks in the first period against the Edmonton Oilers at HP Pavilion on January 2, 2010 in San Jose, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

Although the month of December ended up being a disaster for the Edmonton Oilers, it didn't start out that way. They actually started the month with a five-game winning streak.

This winning streak gave every Oiler fan a little bit of hope. However, that hope has been smashed by a recent streak of terrible hockey.

Since the end of that five game winning streak on December 11, the Oilers have only won one game. That was against the Toronto Maple Leafs on December 30.

While they have only won one game, they have lost 11, ten of those coming in regulation.

The question on everybody's mind is, what's wrong with the team. Are they really putting themselves in this situation? Well, the answer is a very simple yes.

However, you can't put the blame on one area of their game. Everybody on the team has to take responsibility for the way that they've been playing. They simply have to work harder and play better.

It really is that simple.

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Unfortunately, we don't know where they can start. They have no solid strengths that they can rely on. They're not like other teams that can fall back on one area of their game when another starts to play badly.

If the Oilers want to win, they have to have everybody playing well. They don't have the luxury of relying on something else.

However, I will say that I think they need to focus a little bit more on defense. Right now, they're 27th in the NHL defensively while being 19th offensively.

Over the last month, they have given up a ton of goals. In eight of their 11 games, they have given up four or more goals. That's different than the five game winning streak where they never gave up more than three goals, and they only gave up three goals once.

Even though I want them to focus on defense a little bit more, that doesn't mean they need to completely neglect the offense. Even if they play better defense, they're still not going to win a lot of games with the 19th best offense in the NHL.

Obviously, every area of their game needs to be improved.

Although, I think it's more important to play solid defense. I wrote another article that talked about why defense is more important, but it really revolves around being patient for the other team to make mistakes and then capitalizing on them.

Once again, that's something I discuss that in a completely different article . The point is that the Oilers need to stop letting in goals. They're not going anywhere until the defense gets better, and they're going to be limited in success until the offense follows.

See more of my NHL opinions at Tips for Hockey


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