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Game Thread: Oilers at Flyers - Get Well Soon, Taylor

Tonight the Oilers get a taste of what life would be like without Taylor Hall.

Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

There are times when I just can't shake the feeling that the Oilers are cursed. Times like this for example. A week ago I looked at a schedule with the Predators, Canucks, and then four games against the East and thought happy thoughts. Then the Oilers lost two games and with an eight day, five game road trip directly ahead of them lost the services of Taylor Hall for two to fours weeks because that's just how things work out for the Oilers. And just like that the happy thoughts were gone.

How To Tune In

Being in Philadelphia this one gets underway early, 5PM Edmonton time. Turn to Sportsnet Oilers to watch it live.

What To Watch For From The Oilers

The story line tonight is life without Hall. Benoit Pouliot draws in on the left side of the top unit with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle, a combination that I don't think would have been the first choice of a lot of Oilers fans, but Dallas Eakins is playing a hunch. The top line has been the only line providing offence this season so if this doesn't work Eakins will have to switch things up on the fly. If he does end up bring out the blender it'll be fun to see what line combinations he ends up with. When you've got Will Acton the possibilities are endless.

What To Watch For From The Flyers

Take a second and scroll down to take a look at the Flyers defence. Done. Okay, so what the hell is that? As an Oilers fan I am familiar with ugly looking defences, and that my friends is an ugly looking defence. No wonder the Flyers are rumoured to be interested in Jeff Petry, looking at that group there aren't many adult men owning skates that they shouldn't be interested in. When the great Nick Schultz is averaging 19 minutes a night you probably have some problems on your blue line.

Projected Line Combinations

Edmonton Oilers

Benoit Poulliot - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle
Teddy Purcell - Mark Arcobello - David Perron
Matt Hendricks - Leon Draisaitl - Nail Yakupov
Will Acton - Boyd Gordon - Jesse Joensuu

Nikita Nikitin - Justin Schultz
Oscar Klefbom - Mark Fayne
Martin Marincin - Jeff Petry

Viktor Fasth

Philadelphia Flyers

Michael Raffl - Claude Giroux - Jakub Voracek
Brayden Schenn - Vincent Lecavalier - Wayne Simmonds
R.J. Umberger - Sean Couturier - Matt Read
Zac Rinaldo - Pierre-Edouard Bellemare - Chris VandeVelde

Nicklas Grossmann - Mark Streit
Michael Del Zotto - Nick Schultz
Carlo Colaiocovo - Luke Schenn

Steve Mason

Final Thought