Photo Source: Rich Lam/Getty Images North America
Cam Talbot had an insane season last year, we’re all pretty aware of that. The guy played in 73 regular season games and had another 13 starts during the playoffs, it’s incredibly crazy how much of a workhorse he was. Heading into this season one of the biggest questions lingering over the team was could Cam produce another season like last year?
The Oilers, in general, played a much more dominant game in their season opener compared to the last two. The team only allowed one powerplay to the Flames all night, which Cam only faced one shot during the two minutes that Kris Russel sat in the box. He also turned away 25 shots during even strength play and another one while the Oilers were shorthanded.
Personally, I didn’t watch the Vancouver game, I was in Calgary being forced to watch the Calgary Flames make a comeback while at a bar. In 20 minutes of action Talbot looked shaky from what I’ve seen, giving up three goals on seven shots. The first goal Horvat rushed the net, but the other two Talbot really should have had. LB coming in and making a sharp relief gave me some comfort in knowing that he’s probably ready to jump in when needed.
Heading into Sunday’s game, it became apparent there’s a bit of a Jekyll and Hyde situation going on with Talbot; which one would show up, the stud of last year or the shaky guy from Saturday?
In all honestly, I thought Scheifele had excellent hands to get the puck in the back of the net to get the night started off. But as more shots were fired at the Oilers backstop you could tell Talbot really lacks confidence. I thought for sure that McLellan would sit Talbot to start the third, but I was wrong on that one.
I’ve noticed that Talbot hasn’t dominated out of the gate in the last two seasons with the Oilers as their starter. Two years ago Talbot lost his first three starts in net, he was competing with Nilson for the starting job. Eventually, things got on track for Talbot.
Last year Talbot started the year 2-0 in back to back games against Calgary where he faced 41 shots the first game and 35 in the other. He then gave up six goals on 23 shots in the third game against the Sabres which he was pulled.
Taking a look at his first three games into the season things don’t seem too far off from how Talbot started the last couple seasons, other than that game against Vancouver.
The one thing to note is that we’re only three games into the season and the Oilers don’t play again until Saturday. That gives Talbot four entire days to meet with his mental coach, work with Dustin Schwartz and do whatever else he has to to get set for the Hockey Night In Canada matchup against the Senators on Saturday. But let’s be real, it’s early in the season, we’re only Cam’s only getting started. Try not to panic too much, the sky isn’t falling, yet. What do you think of Talbot’s start this season? Are you concerned? Let me know, shoot me a tweet @nooorzy.