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Pittsburgh Penguins @ Edmonton Oilers Game Preview

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2016 Cup Champs make their stop at Rogers Place as the homestand continues for the Oilers

After missing nearly three weeks, Benoit Pouliot is back.
After missing nearly three weeks, Benoit Pouliot is back.
Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports


penguins

@

Edmonton
41-16-8, 90 points, 1.384 p/g Ranks 35-23-8, 78 points, 1.182 p/g
Metropolitan Division - 3rd Pacific Division - 3rd
2nd Points per Game 11th
9th Special Teams 16th
1st Shots on Goal 8th
18th Goals Against per Game 9th
7 PM MDT
TV - Sportsnet West
Radio - 630 CHED
Rogers Place

The opposing view

PROJECTED
FORWARDS

Patrick Maroon - Connor McDavid - Leon Draisaitl
Milan Lucic - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle
Benoit Pouliot - David Desharnais - Zack Kassian
Matt Hendricks - Mark Letestu - Iiro Pakarinen

DEFENCE

Oscar Klefbom - Adam Larsson
Andrej Sekera - Matthew Benning
Darnell Nurse - Kris Russell

GOAL

Cam Talbot
Laurent Brossoit


The Heat Is On

The Pacific Division is cramped.  Like an early morning diner on a warm summer weekend, you can't park a car in this lot.  The Flames have come out of nowhere (well okay, they've won their last eight games) and are now tied with the Oilers with 78 points.  Anaheim sits just ahead of Edmonton and Calgary with 80 points.

The Oilers will face a daunting task as the 2016 Cup champs make their way into Rogers Place.  Can the Oilers put some space between themselves and the Flames?

Let's go to the tape.

The Oilers are saying

That's Oilers head coach Todd McLellan on facing the Penguins after a disappointing loss to the Islanders on Tuesday

WHAT THE WORLD NEEDS NOW

Pittsburgh is intimidating.  There's no two ways to slice it.  They've got two seventy point scorers in Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin.  Phil Kessel is just chillin' with 60 points, and They've Got Justin Schultz.

The opponents are saying

That's Penguins star forward Evgeni Malkin on a tussle with Jets forward Blake Wheeler.

If you're Evgeni Malkin, apparently you do as you please.  Not sure about one of my stars laying it out with Blake Wheeler, but you do you Evgeni.

Have some of this

  • Phil Kessel is third on the Penguins in points right now. Phil Kessel has four points (2-2-4) in his last three games.  Phil Kessel is a Stanley Cup Champion.
  • LINE SWITCH: Look for Benoit Pouliot to get back into the lineup after being out of the lineup since mid-February. Pouliot was practicing with the third line yesterday, and it's a fair bet you'll see him there tonight.  Pakarinen comes in for Khaira, and Kris Russell is in for Eric "The Sledgehammer" Gryba.  I just gave Eric Gryba that nickname, I hope he likes it.
  • CAM YOU HEAR ME KNOCKIN - You know Talbot is going to start against a powerhouse Penguins club.  (33-19-7, .919 SV% / 2.40 GAA / 5 SO).  The Penguins begin a back-to-back tonight, and Marc-Andre Fleury will be between the pipes after dealing with an illness.  16-8-5, .908 SV% / 3.08 GAA)

  • Tyler Pitlick (knee) will be out for the Oilers.  The Penguins are without defencemen Olli Maata (hand), Trevor Daley (lower body), Kris Letang (upper body) and forwards Patric Hornqvist (concussion), Bryan Rust (upper body) and Tom Sestito (suspended).
    • Would it be the end of the world if the Flames overtook the Oilers.  Not really, but yes.
    • #GOILERS