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Oilers @ Blues Game 24 Preview

Oilers winless streak vs. West still intact

Vladimir Tarasenko is electric with the puck.
Vladimir Tarasenko is electric with the puck.
Jasen Vinlove-USA TODAY Sports

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6-14-3, 15 points, .652 p/g Ranks 14-6-2, 30 points, 1.364 p/g
Western Conference - 14th Western Conference - 4th
29th P/G 8th
17th ST 8th
28th ES 8th
29th Goal 1st
6 PM - SN 360
Scottrade Center
The opposing view: St. Louis Game Time

The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves

Nashville's Pekka Rinne turned aside each and every one of Edmonton's 37 shots en route to a 1-0 overtime victory. An overtime victory helps improve (!) Edmonton's record in the West to 0-10-2.  This game was rather enjoyable in comparison to recent Oiler games in that the team didn't allow seven goals, they didn't surrender any shorthanded goals either.  Other than Matt Hendricks getting blasted by a Shea Weber slap shot (and Hendricks subsequently limping off in obvious pain), a missed penalty shot by Jordan Eberle, and Nikita Niktiin falling over a stick while in the Nashville zone, things went about as well as they possibly could for a trip to Nashville.  We're just over a quarter of the way through the season, and I've accepted "good losses".  Progress!

The Oilers are still winless against the West, and they'll face another tall drink of water tonight in St. Louis.

The Oilers are saying

"It's a tough game to lose, but I think we gotta take a lot of good stuff with us from this game"

That's Oilers goaltender Viktor Fasth on last night's performance.

Viktor Fasth is right.  The Oilers should have been killed last night, but they lost by the slimmest of margins.  The Oilers had more shot attempts, they outshot the Predators 37-25, and the game could have gone either way.  The Predators practically gift-wrapped the game up for the Oilers when Shea Weber closed his hand on the puck in the Nashville crease in overtime, but Jordan Eberle was unable to do the deed.  Nashville hit a couple of posts, and Filip Forsberg sealed the deal with just over a minute in overtime.

I joke about how I've become complacent with a 'good loss', but this game really wasn't bad.  Yes, the team has obvious warts, but for much of the game, you couldn't see them.  Viktor Fasth played really well this game, and save for the knuckler in Dallas, he played well there too.

It's not a lot. But it's something.

The Opponent is saying

"Marty has agreed to come in and practice through early next week."

Whoa there, Doug Armstrong.  There's no denying that Martin Brodeur was a tip top goaltender during his heyday, but I can't for the life understand why you'd go and invite the now 42-year old Montréal native to practice.  Brian Elliott is week-to-week with a knee injury, and I'd feel pretty confident that you'd be able to pry a goaltender out of somewhere (ahem, Josh Harding).  Brodeur's last few years haven't been replacement level (two seasons of .901, .908 and .903 over his last four), and it's kind of a head-scratcher as to why he'd be looked at as a viable solution at this point in his career.

Have some of this
  • Dallas' Ryan Garbutt received a two game suspension for knocking knees on Tuesday with Taylor Hall.  Thought he'd get a few more as a repeat offender, but the wheel of justice stops at two.
  • This is the third and final game of this roadtrip.  Oilers have one point so far, and would be quite fortunate to escape with two or three total after tonight.
  • Ben Scrivens should get the second half of the back-to-back tonight.
  • Justin Schultz and Martin Marincin caught the press box last night, and the defence didn't look like a tire fire last night.  I'd be perfectly fine with Jultz catching another night, but I'd be fine with Martin Marincin coming back in.  Marincin hasn't looked the best via the eye test, but he's also faced some pretty tough comp along the way.
  • This is weird.
  • Matt Hendricks went off with a fairly big limp after taking a bullet from Shea Weber early in the first. Keep your eyes peeled to see if he's in for tonight.
  • Jesse Joensuu caught a late scratch yesterday, yielding a spot for Luke Gazdic.  If Hendricks is out tonight, I'd expect to see more of the Caveman.
  • The Oilers are still winless against the Western Conference (0-11-2).  Tonight, that all changes. (drinks)