Oilers @ Blue Jackets Game 27 Preview

Mike Strasinger-USA TODAY Sports

Everything went right for the Oilers in Nashville. Today, the circus travels to Columbus.

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@

Cbj
8-16-2, .730 p/g Ranks 9-13-3, .840 p/g
Western Conf: 14th Eastern Conf: 13th
28th P/G 25th
26th ST 27th
29th ES 24th
29th Goal 23rd
5:00 PM MDT - Sportsnet West

Nationwide Arena

The opposing view: The Cannon

Top Story:

  • Ilya Bryzgalov posted a shutout, and the Oilers got goals from Taylor Hall and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins en route to a 3-0 victory over the Predators in Nashvillle last night.  Oh, you should've seen it. Bryzgalov looked solid, the defence held it together, and all four lines were rolling.  Arcobello was back in the lineup, he only led the freaking team in Corsi. Next time someone tells you the fourth line doesn't matter, it's your job, nay, it's your duty to hit them in the nose with a rolled up newspaper and get right in their face and shout NO.

The Oilers are saying:

"Shutouts are always fun... The team played well.  They had a couple chances, but that's what the goalie's for.  I have to make the saves"

That's Oilers goalie Ilya Bryzgalov on the team's 3-0 victory over the Predators last night.

Let's break it down.

  • "Shutouts are fun" - good.
  • "The team played well" - correct
  • "They (Nashville) had a couple chances" - true
  • "that's what the goalie's for" - affirmed
  • "I had to make the saves" - demonstrably true

Bryzgalov made new friends last night.  Fans had to like what they saw, I'm sure MacTavish had to have been pleased.  I'm not recommending fans get too far ahead of themselves in regards to Bryzgalov, but his first game in an Oiler sweater was quite encouraging.  While the Oilers were on a three game winning streak last week, Coach Eakins left his lines untouched.  Devan Dubnyk started all of those games, and based on last night's performance, it will be interesting to see whether or not Eakins turns to Bryzgalov on back to back nights.

The Opponent is saying:

It looked like we lacked some energy, it looked like we lacked another step.  But, that's not an excuse, you got to find a way, and whether it's digging down to find more energy or managing the puck better, or defending harder, or better, there's a way to win the game tonight...and we needed to find that way, and we didn't help ourselves with a couple of penalties.

That's Columbus coach Todd Richards on the Jackets' 4-0 loss to Nashville on Wednesday.

It's nice to hear another team's coach try and explain away another putrid loss.  The Jackets were able to amass just nineteen shots against Nashville on Wednesday, and Coach Richards went with the line about needing more 'energy'.  We've heard this one before with a little variant called 'level of compete', but either way, it's nice having the shoe on the other foot every now and again.

Of note:

OPERATIONAL FLOW CHART FOR SCRATCHING MARK ARCOBELLO

  1. Are you going to scratch Mark Arcobello?  If 'no', you may stop here.  If 'yes', please proceed to 2.
  2. Please smash your face into a brick wall and go back to 1.

Projected Lines & Pairings:

The Edmonton Oilers

Taylor Hall - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle

Nail Yakupov - Sam Gagner - Ales Hemsky

Ryan Smyth - Boyd Gordon - David Perron

Jesse Joensuu - Mark Arcobello - Ryan Jones

Andrew Ference - Jeff Petry

Nick Schultz -  Anton Belov

Denis Grebeshkov - Justin Schultz

Ilya Bryzgalov

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

The Columbus Blue Jackets

Boone Jenner - Ryan Johansen - Nick Foligno

Matt Calvert - Artem Anisimov - Cam Atkinson

R.J. Umberger - Mark Letestu - Blake Comeau

Sean Collins - Michael Chaput - Jack Skille

Jack Johnson - Fedor Tyutin

James Wisniewski - Ryan Murray

Tim Erixon - Dalton Prout

Sergei Bobrovsky

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