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Coyotes @ Oilers Game 35 Preview

What are wins, anyways?

Devan Dubnyk has been experiencing a fair bit of success in Arizona so far.
Devan Dubnyk has been experiencing a fair bit of success in Arizona so far.
Matt Kartozian-USA TODAY Sports



11-18-4, 26 points, .794 p/g Ranks 7-20-7, 21 points, .618 p/g
Western Conference - 13th Western Conference -14th
28th P/G 30th
23rd ST 25th
29th ES 25th
28th Goal 29th
Rexall Place
The opposing view: Five For Howling

When Five Goals Aren't Enough

The Oilers got a pair of goals from Taylor Hall and Mark Arcobello en route to a 5-2 lead with seven minutes remaining in the second period.  They're gonna win.  It's gonna happen.  Finally. Yeah, not so fast.  The Oilers yielded three goals over the next twenty-seven minutes of regulation time only to be bounced in the shootout by former Oiler Shawn Horcoff.  The Oilers have won one game in the last forty-five days.  Tonight, they'll try to make it two in forty six.  They'll play a team that's beaten them four times this year.  I got a warm, fuzzy feeling about all of this.

The Oilers are saying

"We definitely want to have a better second period tonight than we did down there"

That's Oilers interim head coach Todd Nelson on how he'd like to have a better mid frame tonight than when the Oilers were slaughtered 27-5 on the shot clock last week.

What a flaming pile of wreckage that was.  Still, the Oilers were somehow able to get that game to overtime only to cough it up with three tenths of a second remaining in OT.  I dream of the days where the Oilers will be able win some games in regulation time with some regularity, but I know that this is not the year.  I really thought they had that Stars game on lock down, but with these lovable scamps, you never know.

The Opponent is saying

"Get some chances, can't score.  Give up too many chances and not getting enough saves"
That's Coyotes head coach Dave Tippett on the woes of the Coyotes this season.

It's no secret that the Oilers would like more out of Ben Scrivens and Viktor Fasth between the pipes this year.  The Coyotes would like the same from Mike Smith, as the Coyotes have gotten very little mileage out of Smith this year.  Smith was awarded a thirty-four million dollar deal over six years last year, and he's got a disappointing .884 SV% in twenty-three games so far.  Compare that to Devan Dubnyk's .917 in fourteen games, and it really doesn't look good for Mike Smith.  Dubnyk is 2-0 against the Oilers this year.  Look for him tonight.

Have some of this
  • LINE SWITCH - Anton Lander was called up for the game versus Dallas while Leon Draisaitl caught a game from up high.  Draisaitl is back in the lineup and Lander is back in OKC.  Lander had a pretty good game (he had six shots!).  Surely, Oiler brass knows what they're doing.  Oh, by the way, Luke Gazdic is in the lineup tonight.
  • Matt Hendricks will miss tonight's game with an illness.
  • Anybody catch Brad Hunt wearing Steve Staios' old number against Dallas?  What about Pitlick looking like Joffrey Lupul out there?  Brad Hunt is now 24.  Pitlick is now number 15. Oiler victories on the season is still number 7.
  • Ben Scrivens (5-12-5. 1 SO) gets to go for the Oilers once again.. He's looking for win number six on the year, and a push to his SV% of .893.  Devan Dubnyk (6-3-2, .917 SV%) looks for his third victory against the Oilers in three tries.
  • A TINY LITTLE GIFT - Oilers look to double their win total against the Western Conference on the season if they can topple this Arizona club.  They've got six wins against the East, but are now 1-16-6 against the West.
  • GOOD NEWS, BAD NEWS - This is the last Oilers game you'll be watching until the 27th when Team Oilers cruise to the Saddledome in Calgary.  The bad news is that there's still 46 more games after that.  Hey, at least there's the draft.