The Oilers start a nine-game road trip tonight - they get the Blackhawks twice. Ouch.
|7-7-3, 1.0 p/g
||15-0-3, 1.833 p/g|
|Western Conf: 12th||Western Conf: 1th|
|NHLN Share: 16th||NHLN Share: 2nd|
1:30 p.m. MST | Sportsnet
The Blackhawks are off to a ridiculous start, thanks to the hottest start in the careers of Ray Emery and Corey Crawford. The two have combined for an even strength save percentage of .940. That number will start to fall as the season wears on, but it won't matter. Chicago can go 11-19 the rest of the way and still make the playoffs. They can go 15-14-1 the rest of the way and probably still win the conference!
The Blackhawks are a juggernaut, but the Oilers desperately need two points.
The Oilers are saying:
"What’s going on with Whitney?" asked an NHL executive before Saturday’s game.
"He’s not even 30 and and he’s sitting out?" said the long-time NHL observer.
"Is his game that bad?"
Who does Matheson hang out with? How can two people so closely tied to the NHL be so shocked that Whitney's play has been atrocious, when it was just as bad last season?
The Opponent is saying:
"It seems like things haven't changed. Everyone's playing hard and making the right plays, not turning pucks over and guys are coming back to help out our 'D.' It's just another solid victory for us."
Key matchup: Nail Yakupov vs. Ralph Krueger. When the superstar is on the left wing with Sam Gagner and Ales Hemsky, the latter two are okay. When anyone else is there, Gagner and Hemsky have been a mess. Get Yakupov up to that line and give the Blackhawks something to worry about.
Edmonton Oilers Injuries
Chicago Blackhawks Injuries