|2-6-1, 0.556 p/g
||Ranks||5-3-0, 1.25 p/g|
|Western Conf: 16th||Eastern Conf: 3rd|
5:30 p.m. MDT | Sportsnet
Expected to miss this game for the Oilers: Taylor Hall, Sam Gagner, Jordan Eberle, Ryan Smyth, Jesse Joensuu. For the Canadiens: Max Pacioretty, Daniel Briere, Alexei Lemelin, Brandon Prust. The only thing missing from this game is Hot Lips Houlihan. The Oilers can ice a combined two reliable lines. Remember Bryan Young, Sebastien Bisaillon, Danny Syvret and Mathiey Roy? We're in the same territory up front right now. There is some solace to be had in Montreal missing three regular forwards, but the Canadiens are far deeper all over the ice.
Laco's place in history: Ladislav Smid is off and running with 2 shots on goal in 9 games. The number calls to mind the fact that Smid is 24th in NHL history in fewest shots per game for non-goons. Jason Strudwick is 1st.
The Oilers are saying:
"As the Avalanche prepare for what should be a great game in Pittsburgh on Monday, I asked a couple of scouts about the biggest difference between their young players and Edmonton's. The No. 1 answer was "Colorado's check." The other response was, "They really come back to get the puck, so their defencemen don't have to handle it much."
--A couple of extremely wrong-headed scouts, to Elliotte Friedman.
I mentioned it in the power rankings, but it bears repeating. The Avs had a .959 ES save percentage going into the Pittsburgh game. After J.S. Gigeure shut out the Pens, that is up to .963. Gigeure is also a ludicrous 27 for 27 on shots against short-handed. Nathan MacKinnon is down at Mike Brown possession levels despite an offensive zone push. The silly "check" answer goes back to this canard that the Oilers aren't "hard to play against" because they aren't gritty enough. Give the Avs average goaltending and no one is talking about them right now.
The Opponent is saying:
"You’re an idiot. Grow up, Chuckie!"
--Brendan Gallagher, yelling at Alex Galchenyuk in the locker room.
This would be an outstanding nickname if it was based on Galchenyuk being some sort of evil midget doll.
Key matchup: Luck versus body parts. The Oilers need to get healthy fast, stay healthy for awhile, and hope for injuries to the rest of the division.
Expected Lines & Pairings:
Mark Arcobello - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Nail Yakupov
David Perron - Boyd Gordon - Ales Hemsky
Ben Eager - Tyler Pitlick - Ryan Jones
Luke Gazdic - Will Acton - Denis Grebeshkov
Ladislav Smid - Jeff Petry
Anton Belov - Justin Schultz
Nick Schultz - Andrew Ference
Jordan Eberle back skating with #Oilers this morning.— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) October 22, 2013
The Canadiens expected lineup based on recent practices and updates:
Brendan Gallagher - Alex Galchenyuk - Lars Eller
Rene Bourque - Tomas Plekanec - Brian Gionta
David Desharnais - Patrick Holland - Michael Bournival
Travis Moen - Michael Blunden - Ryan White
Andrei Markov - PK Subban
Josh Gorges - Raphael Diaz
Jarred Tinordi - Francis Bouillon
The Oilers need Trapper and Hawkeye to put them back together: