Oilers @ Avalanche Game 37 Preview

Having a good season is Matt Duchene. - Doug Pensinger

This four game road trip can't end any faster, can it?

Oilers3

@

Quebec-nordiques
11-22-3, .694p/g Ranks 22-10-1, 1.364 p/g
Western Conf: 1,755th Western Conf: 7th
4,709th P/G 8th
338th ST 15th
182nd ES 5th
93rd Goal 8th
7:30 MDT - Sportsnet Oilers
Pepsi Center
The opposing view: Mile High Hockey

Tickets - TiqIQ

Top Stories

  • Zero. That's how many goals the Oilers were able to score against Martin Jones and the rest of the Los Angeles Kings. Oilers have been outscored 10-2 in the three games this road trip has lasted, and I'm clinging to hope that they'll remember how awesome it felt when they scored eight against the Avalanche the last time these two hooked up.
  • HAPPY 200TH GAME, TAYLOR HALL! Taylor Hall's 200th game was Tuesday in Los Angeles. Not one single, solitary Oiler playoff game has been played during that time. And don't even get me started on the four years before that. Thanks, Oilers. Glad to see we made use of those entry level years. Taylor Hall has come exactly as billed, and he's one of a few pieces that make watching this team not a complete and utter fucking chore. Here's hoping we see you in a few playoff games by the time you hit 400.

The Oilers are saying:

"We needed to score a goal, and it would've changed things greatly"

That's Oilers coach Dallas Eakins on the team's most recent loss to the Kings.

I'm starting to get this Eakins fellow. Scoring a goal is good. I agree with this channel of thought. However the sentiment, the Oilers were unable to execute this "goal scoring" phenomenon. The Kings were able to sink the submarine on three occasions (two while Ilya Bryzgalov was in net). The Oilers ought to get a goal tonight in Colorado, I like their chances for at least one.

The Opponent is saying:

"They scored really nice goals...they really beat Varly, they really put it over the glove..."

That's Avalanche coach Patrick Roy on the last Edmonton/Colorado meetup. Please recall the Oilers hanging an eight spot on Semyon Varlamov, who will be getting the nod for the Avalanche tonight.

Colorado started the season at 14-2, but has since gone just 8-8-1. They're hanging on to seventh place in the West, but even with that awesome start, .500 hockey will put them at about 92 points and...well okay, a few OTLs mixed in there and they might have enough to get into the dance. Don't look at me like that.

Of note:

  • Corey Potter will serve his second of a two game suspension tonight, so it's quite likely that Eakins will go with a similar D lineup that he did in Los Angeles. Here's hoping we see no more of this tonight, or ever. Bloody hell.
  • Mark Arcobello was hit good and hard by Drew Doughty with about six minutes left in the third period on Tuesday, and he didn't practice in Denver on Wednesday. Look for Anton Lander to get busy on the fourth line tonight.
  • The Oilers say that David Perron has a 14.2 Corsi Rel. The Oilers know what Corsi Rel is, or they're a lot better at using the internet than I give them credit for.
  • Thinking Ilya Bryzgalov is going to get the nod tonight for the Oilers for a couple of reasons - the Oilers likely want to know what a good sample of Bryzgalov looks like, and I don't think they're really jazzed up about playing Devan Dubnyk anymore. Bryzgalov has looked pretty good so far as an Oiler, and I can see the Oilers offering him a deal unless he really craps the bed between now and April. My worst fear is that an over-zealous Oilers club that's missed the playoffs for a decade throws a Khabibulin style deal at Bryzgalov. But hey, if that does happen (smash me in the skull with a hammer if it does), at least Bryzgalov won't be 35 when it all goes down. Right? Dubnyk gets the start tonight.  People seem pretty pleased about this.

Projected Lines & Pairings:

The Edmonton Oilers

Taylor Hall - Sam Gagner - Nail Yakupov

David Perron - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle

Ryan Smyth - Boyd Gordon - Ales Hemsky

Luke Gazdic - Anton Lander - Ryan Jones

Anton Belov - Jeff Petry

Andrew Ference - Philip Larsen

Nick Schultz - Justin Schultz

Devan Dubnyk

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

The Colorado Avalanche

Ryan O'Reilly - Matt Duchene - Nathan MacKinnon

Gabriel Landeskog - Paul Stastny - P.A. Parenteau

Jamie McGinn - John Mitchell - Max Talbot

Patrick Bordeleau - Marc-Andre Cliche - Cody McLeod

Nate Guenin - Erik Johnson

Andre Benoit - Cory Sarich

Tyson Barrie - Jan Hejda

Semyon Varlamov

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