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Blackhawks @ Oilers Game 42 Preview

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Second half of the season begins with tough company.

Klinkhammer
Klinkhammer
Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports


Chicago

@

Edmonton
27-12-2, 56 points, 1.366 p/g Ranks 9-23-9, 27 points, .642 p/g
Western Conference - 3rd Western Conference -14th
3rd P/G 30th
1st ST 25th
5th ES 26th
1st Goal 29th
7:30 PM MDT - SNW
Rexall Place
The opposing view: Second City Hockey

Tough Sledding

Oh, the Chicago Blackhawks.  I fear this game like a case of the mumps. Or measles.  Or rubella.  Or smallpox.  The Oilers are up against a mammoth opponent tonight, one who doubled up Minnesota last night 4-2.  Can the Oilers do the unthinkable and upset a giant?

The Oilers are saying

"We want to focus on doing the right things out there as a group and there are a lot of different things we can point our finger at"

That's Oilers interim head coach Todd Nelson.

The Oilers are 2-1-2 in their last five games, which is an improvement.  Now that you mention it, the Oilers have gotten about a quarter pf their total points on the season over those past five games.  It's been brutal out there (again), but is there finally some light at the end of this long, dark tunnel?  Or, is it another oncoming train?

The Opponent is saying

"I've been with first class organizations...But Chicago, this is the pinnacle.  No question.  Everything about it."
That's Blackhawks forward Kris Versteeg with a few thoughts on Chicago.

DEEP DISH
Chicago sounds like fun.  They're on pace for well over a hundred points in a tough Western Conference, they trail only Anaheim and Nashville for the overall points lead in the league.  They've won a couple of Stanley Cups in recent years, too.  The simple idea of the Oilers even making the playoffs right now is so far-fetched right now, the idea of the Oilers winning a Stanley Cup playoff game is like witchcraft
    Have some of this
  • TEN GAMES IN - Todd Nelson has been behind the bench for ten games.  He's got two wins and points in six games total.  He's got a new guy to play centre, a new winger, and the rest of the ramblin' wreck called the Oilers.  How do you think he's doing out there?
  • Viktor Fasth started last game for just the second time under Nelson.  Tonight, they go back to Ben Scrivens (7-13-7, .898 SV% / 1 SO). Cory Crawford (16-8-2, .921 SV% / 1 SO) saw a lot of rubber in Minnesota last night, so keep your eyes peeled to if Antti Raanta gets the call.
  • Patrick Kane is a monster.  He's leading Chicago in goals, assists, points, shooting percentage, and he's probably a pretty good golfer too.  Kane has 45 points, five game winning goals, six power play goals, and the Oilers might just want to launch Nikita Nikitin at Kane in order to stop him.
  • GOILERS