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Oilers @ Ducks Game 77 Preview

Oilers are 5-1-1 in their last 7. Too bad they were 18-39-12 in 69 before that.

Brandon Davidson scored his first NHL goal against Colorado on Monday.
Brandon Davidson scored his first NHL goal against Colorado on Monday.
Chris LaFrance-USA TODAY Sports

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23-40-13, 59 points, .76 p/g Ranks 49-22-7, 105 points, 1.346 p/g
Western Conference - 13th Western Conference - 1st
28th P/G 2nd
24th ST 15th
28th ES 18th
28th Goal 18th
Honda Center
The opposing view: Anaheim Calling

All This Winning Is Contagious

Edmonton sent Colorado to the brink of mathematical elimination with a 4-1 victory at the Pepsi Center on Monday.  It really was a 2-1 game until Semyon Varlamov got pulled with three minutes remaining, but I'll take a couple of empty netters to pad the pile.  Brandon Davidson scored his first NHL goal in the first period, and then Justin Schultz made Nate Guenin look very bad. Richard Bachman stopped all but one for his second consecutive victory.

The Oilers are winners of their last three games, something they haven't been able to say since way back in October. The Ducks have won forty-nine games and look to clinch the Pacific Division tonight.

The Oilers are saying

"I'm extremely excited and honoured to be part of the organization.  I just can't thank my teammates and coaches from Denver enough for what they've done for me over the last four years. It's just really great to have an opportunity to comedown here to the United States to play hockey when maybe the WHL wasn't exactly suited for me.  I can't thank my teammates and coaches enough."

That's Oilers defence prospect Joey LaLeggia on his time with Denver. LaLeggia signed a two year contract with the Oilers this week.

A fifth round pick in the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, LaLeggia finished third on Denver in scoring this year.  A Hobey Baker finalist, LaLeggia will see some time in OKC before the year ends.  It'll be interesting to see where he starts next year, because I'm looking for any and all available bodies to help replace 21 and 85.

The opponents are saying

"We weren't really happy after the 7-2 and 5-3 losses in New York and Columbus, so we had a little bit of a regroup in Boston.  We had a couple of meetings and wanted to make sure we were back at our game, and make sure everybody knows what they're doing.  There are only a few games left before the playoffs, and we want to get that momentum going."
That's Ducks defenceman Francois Beauchemin on the Ducks regrouping from a couple of duds.

The Ducks lead the Pacific division by ten points over Vancouver, and can claim the division tonight with a victory over the Oilers.

Have some of this
  • A tip of the hat to Brandon Davidson, who scored his first NHL goal against Colorado on Monday.  It came on a nice feed from Anton LanderHere, watch it.  So many feel good stories here over the past week you'd think this team didn't lose 53 games this season.
  • Ben Scrivens (15-23-10, .896 SV% / 3.00 GAA) will likely get the start tonight, while Frederik Anderson (33-11-5, .914 SV% / 2.40 GAA) is the likely choice for Anaheim.  We could also see John Gibson (20-13-7, .916 SV% / 2.58 GAA).  With the Oilers definitely in the hunt for a goalie this offseason, is Gibson a possible target?
  • Tyler Bunz has been called up as Richard Bachman is dealing with a death in his family.  I don't even want to think about tomorrow's game against Los Angeles.

    Does Arizona have six more points in them?  Do they have one?  Buffalo hosts a Leafs club who defeated Tampa last night.  If Buffalo wins tonight, their fan base might melt.