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Wild @ Oilers Game 60 Preview

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Red-hot Wild are 9-1-1 in their last 11. Can Edmonton throw a wrench in their playoff plans?

Martin Marincin with the  shootout winner against Boston
Martin Marincin with the shootout winner against Boston
Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports


Minnesota

@

oilers logo black text
29-21-7, 65 points, 1.142 p/g Ranks 17-32-10, 44 points, .724 p/g
Western Conference - 10th Western Conference - 14th
16th P/G 29th
6th ST 26th
20th ES 28th
18th Goal D29th
7 PM MST - SNOL
Rexall Place
The opposing view: Hockey Wilderness

Martin Marincin's Shootout Glory

Raise your hand if you had Martin Marincin in the shootout pool for this one.

That's about what I was thinking.

Martin Marincin scored in the twelfth round of the shootout, while Ben Scrivens stopped a dozen Bruins in the very same shootout to help eek out a 4-3 victory for the Edmonton Oilers.  Boston served up 41 shots on goal to Edmonton's 30 (they also led overall Corsi events 56-41)), but some spectacular play by Scrivens in the shootout helped the Oilers walk away with two points.  Nail Yakupov scored again, as did Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Teddy Purcell.  The Oilers actually had a 3-1 lead after Purcell scored nine minutes into the second period. As is tradition, Edmonton yielded two goals in just over a minute late in the second period.  Ben Scrivens turns aside a dozen shootout attempts in the skills competition, then Martin Marincin goes and does this.

Today, the Oilers face off against a red-hot Wild team.  Let's see who's saying what.

The Oilers are saying

"Yes, I do".

That's Oilers defenceman Martin Marincin when asked if he's "got this" in the shootout. Marincin would go on to score the shootout winner.  On his birthday, no less.

Coach Nelson went through eleven players before Martin Marincin, but it would be young Marincin who would provide the deciding goal for the Oilers.  Not a bad gift on your birthday.  Marincin turned a ripe 23 years young on the night he scored the shootout winner.

The Opponent is saying

"Even that one extra point, it's huge, especially against a team that we're chasing (for the Stanley Cup Playoffs).  Every point is very important and you need it all.  We want to take as many as we can and move forward."
That's Wild forward Mikko Koivu on Minnesota's 3-2 OT victory over Calgary on Wednesday night.

The Wild are doing pretty good as of late.  They've gone 8-0-2 in their last ten games, taking eighteen out of a possible 20 points.  They're still three points out of a wild card spot, but they've got three (!) games in hand over San Jose, who currently occupies the final spot.  Gonna be a tight squeeze til the end.

Have some of this

  • DEVAN DUBNYK AGAIN - Dubnyk's been on fire since being dealt to the Wild.  A .936 SV% isn't going to be sustainable forever, but it's what he's put out there in fourteen games (11-2-1).  Who's hotter in the league right now?
  • EVERYBODY IS INJURED - Alright, pause.  Jeff Petry is day to day (ribs), Anton Lander is probably out for the season (shoulder), and Viktor Fasth is out for a while with the knee injury he sustained in the overtime loss to Winnipeg on Monday night.  Add that to the guys who've been out for a while like Taylor Hall and Nikita Nikitin, and you've got Benoit Pouliot playing centre.  What?
  • ACTION - The Oilers have signed forward Rob Klinkhammer to a one year deal valued at 725K. That's 75K less than Luke Gazdic (800K) and one of those two can actually make a pass.  Forward Ryan Hamilton was also inked to a two-way contract.
  • The Oilers have called up Jordan Oesterle (6-15-21 in 49 GP)  from Oklahoma City.  Expect him to fill in with Jeff Petry out tonight.
  • NAIL - Yakupov has seven points (2-5-7) in his last six games.  He's said that he's comfortable playing with Derek Roy, a veteran centre.  Let that good time feeling keep on rolling.
  • THOUGHTS WITH MacT - Some thoughts on today's presser - The Oilers are going to push to sign Derek Roy.  I don't think anything's gotten better in Jeff Petryland, and he'll be gone in the next little while.  MacTavish said that he expects to keep about "80%" of the team next year, hopefully he is able to coerce some nice defencemen to come and play.
  • I'd be five bucks that Todd Nelson is the permanent coach next year.  He's won more games (10 in 28) than Dallas Eakins (7 in 32) and for that he deserves a look, but the Oilers should at least keep the door open to interview some other prospective (read:  more experienced) candidates.  I think we all know how this team operates, and if history repeats itself, Nelson will have the gig full time before too long.
  • GOILERS