Edmonton Oilers (2-5-0)
Pittsburgh Penguins (5-3-1)
PPG Paints Arena - Pittsburgh
5 PM MDT
TV: Sportsnet 1
Radio: 630 CHED
Oilers looked to escape Philadelphia with at least a point until a breakdown in their own end allowed Wayne Simmonds to put the Flyers up permanently. It’s a not a good look for Ryan Strome, Milan Lucic and Kris Russell. Fortunately, there’s another game today. The Oilers will look to push the reset button and get out of this road trip with a 2-1 finish.
Let’s go to the tape.
The Oilers are saying
"We've had good practices. It's transferring it over into the game, and I think we're getting better in those situations...we worked hard today. We got a lot done. The guys after basically a day and a half off, almost, because of the afternoon game, you expect them to be a little ragged. I thought they got the kinks out fairly early and then the ice got quite snowy at the end so we didn't get a lot done in one area that we wanted, but that's OK”
That’s Oilers coach Todd McLellan on his team’s practices after Sunday’s game in Philadelphia. McLellan seems happy with his team, is tonight the night where the goals finally start coming?
The Penguins are saying
“We've got to do a better job on these back-to-back games...I think we've put ourselves in some bad spots in these back-to-backs by being down early and by a lot. It's hard enough in a regular game to get yourself back into it when you're playing good teams.”
That’s Sidney Crosby after Pittsburgh’s 7-1 loss to Tampa Bay on Saturday night. That’s now a 10-1 drubbing at the hands of Chicago, and a 7-1 manhandling at the hands of Tampa Bay. There’s a connection here, but they waived him yesterday. More on that in a little bit.
Have some of this
Draisaitl & Caggiula questionable for tomorrow, McLellan "anticipates" they'll be cleared, but no guarantees.— Jack Michaels (@EdmontonJack) October 23, 2017
- This would be a pretty big shot in the arm for the Oilers. The Oilers aren’t scoring a bunch right now. Leon can help with this. Leon would likely move Kailer Yamamoto out from the 1 RW slot if he’s able to go tonight.
- The Oilers are averaging just two goals a game on offence. Can that change for the better tonight?
- It just might change for the better tonight. Through nine games, the Penguins have yielded 38 goals (most in the league). That’s an average of over four goals allowed per game. This includes a couple of absolute blowouts with a poor backup netminder, but a sub .900 starting goaltender isn’t helping things either.
- NET GAINS: Look for Cam Talbot to get the start for the Oilers (2-4-0, .903 SV% / 1 SO), while you can expect the Penguins to counter with Matt Murray (5-0-0, .896 SV%). Pittsburgh recently waived Antti Niemi (0-3-0, .798 SV) after a couple of dreadful performances. .
- The Oilers will be missing defenceman Andrej Sekera (out til December/January) as he recovers from ACL surgery. Leon Draisaitl (eye/concussion) is questionable, as is Drake Caggiula. The Penguins will miss Matt Hunwick (concussion) while forward Carter Rowney (hand) is day-to-day.
Oilers can finish the road trip at 2-1 before heading home to face Dallas. Which Oilers club will we see tonight?