Take Mac

Take Mac

When it comes to the rivalry between Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames, Craig MacTavish may also be known for getting the tongue out of the way. Harvey the Hound Prime in January 2003 to play in three of the five Battle of Alberta playoff series between teams.

With teams meeting in the playoffs for the sixth time in franchise history and for the first time since 1991 when the puck fell in Calgary Wednesday, Brian Griffiths and I sat down on our OUTSIDERS 2020 podcast today with MacTavish and Mark Spector of Sportsnet who wrote seven years ago Battle of Alberta. You can find files podcast here.

Here are some excerpts from our conversation with MacTavish, who has been part of that rivalry as player, coach and general manager since arriving in Edmonton in the 1985-86 season.

Announcement – Continue reading below

What about Lyon?

“How did I mess up Lyon? How could he recover so quickly? Amazing courage from Lyon to play the way he did, 22 minutes into the last game. You can tell right away that he didn’t have a breakout pace and wasn’t able to rotate the ankle or get injured as much as he normally does.” I mean, Leon, he can fly. Do you remember the first goal in the third game where Kimbee tried to chase it? It was a two-legged match with Connor and Kimbe was on the tail of Leon, but he couldn’t catch him.

“He didn’t have that arrow in his quiver. Those things are hard to fix too. They take a long time to heal so obviously that’s going to be a big part of it. He had a blast in match 6 and still makes a great play for (Tyson) Barry for the winning goal. But that would be huge, too.”

Follow me boys

May 14, 2022; Edmonton, Alberta, Canada; Edmonton Oilers (97) forward Conor McDavid celebrates after scoring against the Los Angeles Kings during the third period in Game 7 of the first round of the 2022 Stanley Cup playoffs at Rogers Place. Mandatory credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

“Connor, I mean, he really set the tone for the last game when he ran over (Sean) Dorzy. This was, I mean, if you’re on the bench and you see… that’s what the big game players do. Who are the big game players? Well, they do things that they naturally don’t do. On a daily basis, but they do these things out of need and necessity. That’s what I call the big game player. Someone will add something to their game that you don’t see on a daily basis. McDavid definitely did it. This guy was amazing.”

star cure

“They’re really going to target the superstars. Connor will be massively targeted every chance they get. He has elite awareness and he’s going to need that because he’s going to have to maintain his health and they’ll follow him. Leon is a little different animal. He’s harder to get because he’s so powerful. More than any other match. We could have, these guys would definitely target our stars physically.”

Announcement – Continue reading below

Welcome reference!

Arbitration, as always, will be important. I hope they are directed, you know, to allow physical play, but you don’t want to allow liberties, for Flames to take liberties with Connor. . .

“You know, there’s a supercharged league actor in every series. What happens is the league representative will go into every coach’s room and that gives Jay (Woodcroft) and Daryl (Sutter) the opportunity to voice their concerns in the series, and ask them about liberties. I’m sure that’s a topic. Great discussion for the series director. They should walk that line really well.”

Under the skin of Mike Smith

“From what I saw in the last series, you wouldn’t be affected by his skin. He’s so driven, he’s so focused now. I’d be really surprised if I could get under his skin. I mean he’d do things smart. He’d manage the stage performances and the action after he got hit to play in front of the judges, but I I think, based on what I’ve seen, everything will be accounted for. To me, he appears to be a man in tight control of his emotions.

“Amazing the way that guy has played in such a short time. For me, being a fan, I don’t care how he plays from this moment on. This guy respects me. Formidable goalkeeping, fighting and competition. I mean, whatever happens from now on, he’s going to keep playing well. Even if he doesn’t, this guy has definitely won my respect and that of the Oilers fans.”

The price you pay

“It’s cliched, but how bad do you want it and what are you willing to do to get it? How much do you have left in terms of competitiveness, battle and courage to get it done. You have to challenge difficult areas. You have to compete hard for pucks. Otherwise, you will not win. Price Winning this series would be huge. I know for sure we have a number of guys who will pay that price.”

Previously by Robin Brownlee

2022-05-16 18:48:28

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