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Preview: Game 17 - Oilers @ Coyotes

Oilers escape from Anaheim with a win; can they make it two in a row with a W in Arizona?

This is the happiest picture of Teddy Purcell in the whole wide world.
This is the happiest picture of Teddy Purcell in the whole wide world.
Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports



6-10-0, 12 points, .75 p/g Ranks 8-6-1, 17 points, 1.134 p/g
Western Conference - 12th Western Conference - 9th
26th P/G 14th
12th ST 20th
24th S/G 25th
26th Goal 24th
TV - Sportsnet Oilers
Radio - 630 CHED
Gila River Arena
The opposing view:  Five For Howling


The Oilers fell behind on three separate occasions.  Corey Perry scored a PPG for the Oilers midway through the first period.  Leon Draisaitl tied it up in the second with a PPG of his own.  Shawn Horcoff netted one early in the third for the Ducks.  Oscar Klefbom tied it up four minutes later.  Just over a minute later,  Corey Perry potted another one for the Ducks making it 3-2 Oilers.  Time to fold up shop and take some dumb penalties, yeah?

They didn't.  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tied it up just over ninety seconds later.  The Oilers and Ducks went to overtime, when Teddy Purcell sealed the deal on a nifty backhand whilst all alone on Ducks goalie Frederik Andersen.  Nice pass from Andrej Sekera to boot.  A win, a badly needed win.  Now, they've got to do it forty more times.

The Oilers visit a Coyotes team that flat out dominated them in the win-loss column in 2014-15.  Arizona defeated the Oilers five times out of five last year.  Can the Oilers reverse the curse?

The Oilers are saying

"Our group's...they're calm.  They're not in panic mode at all...You can feel it sag a little bit, (but) they pull back up and get themselves going again.  We've been it before (sic), we've played through it.  We almost have a recipe for coming out of it.  It's not healthy to always be there, but we've experienced it and we can believe we can come back."


That's Oilers head coach Todd McLellan on the state of affairs, and coming back from a deficit.

I've got to admit, I thought the Oilers were going to fold like a cheap card table after allowing that first goal, but credit where credit is due - they came back from an improbable three deficits while leaning heavily on goaltender Anders Nilsson.  They escaped from Anaheim with a sweet smelling two points, and now they've got a Coyotes team that's had trouble at home so far.

The opponents are saying

"We played a real disciplined road game tonight; just tried not to do too much...The first period we weren't skating and turned over the puck.  As we got going, we got a little better."

That's Coyoters head coach Dave Tippett on his team's victory in Los Angeles on Tuesday.

A surprising start for the Arizona Coyotes has them at 8-6-1 at the fifteen game mark.  Rookie Max Domi has thirteen points (6-7-13) in fifteen games, while Martin Hanzal is averaging a point per game (2-13-15).

Have some of this
  • THIS IS GOOD. Some deep breaths after last night's OT victory as Jordan Eberle hit his head after a hit from Ducks forward Rickard Rakell.  It's just a bump, and that's good.
  • Benoit Pouliot will be out tonight (sickness).  Anton Slepyshev has been called up from Bakersfield.
  • The Oilers are again going with Anders Nilsson (3-3-0, .912, 3.07 GAA) between the pipes.  Nilsson is outperforming Cam Talbot as of late, but I'm thinking I would've given Talbot a go after Nilsson's victory less than 24 hours ago.  The Coyotes are trotting out Mike Smith (6-4-1, .904 SV%, 3.11 GAA).  Get to him early.
  • For the Oilers, Connor McDavid (deep heavy sigh, clavicle), Benoit Pouliot (sickness) Lauri Korpikoski (undisclosed / concussion?) Justin Schultz (back) and Rob Klinkhammer (lower body) are out of the lineup.  Matt Hendricks (foot) is questionable.   Arizona will be without the services of Steve Downie (upper body), Nicklas Grossman (lower body) and Joe Vitale (upper body).