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Oilers @ Sharks - Can Edmonton Take 2 In 2?

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Oilers face Sharks the day after an impressive shutout victory in Anaheim.

Fear the Beard.  Sharks defenceman Brent Burns leads the team in points.
Fear the Beard. Sharks defenceman Brent Burns leads the team in points.
Bruce Fedyck-USA TODAY Sports


@

San Jose
27-15-8, 62 points, 1.24 p/g Ranks 31-16-2, 64 points, 1.306 p/g
Pacific Division - 3rd Pacific Division - 1st
9th Points per Game 6th
14th Special Teams 17th
5th Shots on Goal 15th
9th Goals Against per Game 3rd
8:30 PM MDT
TV - Sportsnet West
Radio - 630 CHED
SAP Center At San Jose

The opposing view
PROJECTED
FORWARDS

Patrick Maroon - Connor McDavid - Leon Draisaitl
Benoit Pouliot - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle
Milan Lucic - Drake Caggiula -  Anton Slepyshev
Matt Hendricks - Mark Letestu - Zack Kassian

DEFENCE

Adam Larsson - Oscar Klefbom
Andrej Sekera - Kris Russell
Brandon Davidson - Matthew Benning

GOAL

Cam Talbot
Laurent Brossoit


Talbot Blanks Ducks, Draisaitl Scores Twice

If you had the Oilers getting four goals in last night's game and Cam Talbot pitching a shutout, then come collect your prize.  Leon Draisaitl scored twice, while Cam Talbot turned aside all 26 shots from the Ducks en route to a couple of points.  The fun didn't begin until the five minute mark of the second period, when Draisaitl scored his eighteenth of the year on a quick pass in front of the net from Connor McDavid.  It took a couple of whacks until it got there.  Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored his eleventh of the season much later in the second, and Zack Kassian scored what I am going to guess is the nicest goal of his career with about fifteen seconds remaining.

Draisaitl scored his second of the game one minute into the third period, and that's all she wrote.  Cam Talbot turned aside each and every one of the Ducks' 26 shots.  The Oilers win, and they win by a four goal margin over the Ducks.

The Oilers slide into San Jose looking to do cause a ruckus with the Sharks.  Can they do tonight what they did just hours ago in Anaheim?

Let's go to the tape.

The Oilers are saying

That's Leon Draisaitl on goaltender Cam Talbot's performance.

Fans and players will agree that everything's going just great when your starting netminder yields zero goals to a divisional opponent.  It's just science.

The opponents are saying

That's Sharks forward Patrick Marleau, who has been red hot as of late.

Marleau has five goals his past two games, including a four goal period against the Avalanche on Sunday.  He's has 498 career goals right now.

Have some of this

  • I talk a fair bit about Connor McDavid (he's pretty good), but Leon Draisaitl isn't too bad either.  While I'm certain that Draisaitl benefits by playing alongside McDavid.  Draisaitl is second on the Oilers with 44 points (19-25-44).  Things are good when your top two scorers' ages combine to be less than 40.  (It's actually 39 41, you guys.)
  • Cam Talbot's got 25 wins for the Oilers this year.  I'd be shocked if he doesn't go for the Oilers again tonight (25-12-7 .921 SV% / 2.36 GAA / 4 SO).  The Sharks are likely to counter with Martin Jones (25-14-2, .917 SV% / 2.23 GAA / 2 SO)
  • Like an excessive amount of cheap cologne on a subway, the musk of the Vancouver Canucks has overtaken the Flames in the standings.  I'd still be weary of the Kings.
  • Forward Tomas Hertl is expected to play tonight for the Sharks after missing 31 games with a knee injury.
  • I don't want to get all sentimental in a game preview, but this feeling about the Oilers is the closest thing that this team has had since the great playoff run of 2006.  I'm not trying to put the cart before the horse, but the Oilers are playing their 51st game of the season. Barring a catastrophic finish, they're looking like candidates to play a game or two after the regular season ends in April.  While speaking with Lowetide this past offseason, I said that 82 points would be a fair improvement for the Oilers. And, uh, right now,  it's, uh, looking much better than that.  As this team hits the All-Star Break, take a look around, smell the roses. They're not there yet, but it's so close, you can almost taste it.
  • Iiro Pakarinen (knee), Tyler Pitlick (knee), Jujhar Khaira (wrist) and Darnell Nurse (lower body) will be out for the Oilers. The Sharks will miss Joonas Donskoi (undisclosed), Micheal Haley (upper body) and Dylan DeMelo (wrist)
  • #GOILERS