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Stars @ Oilers Game 34 Preview

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Draisaitl sits, Lander plays. Lines get jumbled in today's game with the Stars.

Jerome Miron-USA TODAY Sports


Dallas

@

Edmonton
13-13-5, 31 points, 1 p/g Ranks 7-20-6, 20 points, .606 p/g
Western Conference - 11th Western Conference -14th
23rd P/G 30th
20th ST 25th
21st ES 28th
30th Goal 29th
4 PM MDT
Rexall Place
The opposing view: Defending Big D

Victories Continue To Elude Oilers In Spectacular Fashion

Todd Nelson's Edmonton Oilers Experience™ is still without a win after Thursday's 4-3 loss to the San Jose Sharks. Oiler goals were scored by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins as well as Boyd Gordon and Steve Pinizzotto, but two third period goals in thirty-four seconds by Matt Tennyson and Barclay Goodrow put the Sharks on top for good.   The Oilers have won seven games in thirty three contests.  The fun continues this afternoon.

The lines are getting another shuffle for today's game.  Let's have a look.

The Oilers are saying

"One thing is special teams, they're always very important and we have to improve on that"

That's Oilers interim head coach Todd Nelson on Edmonton's special teams.

No doubt Edmonton's power play unit is in need of some serious window dressing.  As of today, Edmonton's power play sits at 28th in the league at 12.5%, leading only Nashville and Buffalo.  The Oilers have an issue scoring goals in general, scoring just 69 goals in 33 games (a whisker over 2 goals per game).  Edmonton's penalty kill (79.8%) is good for twentieth in the league.  It's been a lot of fun so far this year to be a fan of the Edmonton Oilers.  I can't imagine how much fun it's been to play on the team.

The Opponent is saying

"I felt good, and the guys played very well in front of me"
That's Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen after Dallas' 2-1 victory in Calgary on Friday.

TURNING IT AROUND?
The Stars are winners of their last three games, but they've had a hell of a time trying to keep the puck out of their own net this year.  Allowing a league worst 3.32 goals per game (and nearly 32 shots per game), the tenth ranked offence hasn't been able to put wins up consistently.  Stars goaltender Kari Lehtonen's SV% hovers at .907, which is quite low for Lehtonen.  He's averaged .915 over his career.

Have some of this
  • LINE SWITCH - Boyd Gordon is on line two.  Boyd Gordon is on line two. It's so nice, we're saying it twice.
  • Leon Draisaitl will sit today in favour of Anton Lander.  This is Anton Lander's first game in Edmonton this season.  I'm not really opposed to Lander getting some action at this point of another failed season.  No real issue with Draisaitl catching the press box for today's game, either. The fact that Draisaitl wasn't sent down before the tenth game still chafes me, and I'm not sure that he gets sent back before game 40 (which would save a year of his RFA status).  Has his time on Edmonton made him a better player?  I'll hang up and listen.
  • Anton Lander is on a line with Nail Yakupov and Tyler Pitlick.  Mark Arcobello is between Matt Hendricks and Steve Pinizzotto..
  • Oilers have one win against the Western Conference so far this year, an incredibly awful 1-16-5. Eventually you gotta win one more, right?
  • GOILERS