Ilya Bryzgalov had his worst outing as an Oiler on this night, allowing six goals on 33 shots. After the game, Coach Eakins was asked about why he left Bryzgalov in the net and the bench boss was quick to defend his netminder and point the blame elsewhere.
“I think the only (goal against) that didn’t look great went off our defenceman’s stick," said Eakins.
"We were deep in the game. I didn’t see a reason to take him out at that point. Bryz has been great for us. I think his save percentage was something like (.936) going into the game. I’m not pinning this one on him, I’m pinning it on the boneheaded mistakes when we’ve got everything going in our favour. It’s like we love misery. ‘Hold on a second, things are going too well here, let’s have some misery.’ I’ve had enough misery already.”
Eakins then talked about how the will to improve needs to come from inside the dressing room.
“We’ve got some players here who have been here for a number of years. They have to be done with it. There has to be a change in the commitment level and accountability — not from me, but within the room. That’s where it has to be and it has to start.
"And if it doesn’t start from there, this is just going to continue. It just will. You need the guys in the room really holding each other accountable and not looking the other way."