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Los Angeles Kings @ Edmonton Oilers Game Preview

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After closing out 2017 with an unimpressive campaign against the Jets, the Oilers look to open 2018 with two points against the Kings.

Los Angeles Kings v Philadelphia Flyers
Anze Kopitar leads the Kings with 40 points (17-23-40) in 39 games this season.
Photo by Len Redkoles/NHLI via Getty Images

Los Angeles Kings (23-11-5)

Edmonton Oilers (17-19-3)

730 PM MDT

Rogers Place - Edmonton, Alberta

TV: Sportsnet West (NBCSN in USA)

Radio: 630 CHED

SB Nation Opponent: Jewels From The Crown

BREAKDOWN

The Oilers fell flat against the Jets on New Year’s Eve. Winnipeg took the Oilers to task with five unanswered goals, while the Oilers couldn’t muster one against Connor Hellebuyck and his team. Five different Jets were able to get onto the scoresheet en route to a big two points that put Winnipeg atop the Central Division. The Oilers are searching for answers (and a couple of goals) as they’ll host the Kings tonight at Rogers Place.

Let’s go to the tape.

The Oilers are saying

“It was pretty evident that they outplayed us in every aspect of the game. At this point of the season, you figure which team should be the more desperate, and they played with a lot more desperation than we did."

Source

That’s Oilers forward Milan Lucic after Winnipeg’s 5-0 victory on New Year’s Eve.

The Jets look good. A win on Sunday gave them the lead in the crowded Central Division. Right now, the Oilers do not look good. They’re in the midst of an 0-2-1 run after a fun little streak that saw them win four in a row.

The Kings are saying

"We're always staying in the fight and we never give up. We have real strong identity with our group, and when we play to our identity we usually are successful."

Source

That’s Kings forward Kyle Clifford after LA’s 4-3 victory over the Vancouver Canucks on New Year’s Eve.

The Kings are right in the middle of the pack in goals scored (15th, 2.9 goals per game) but they’re the best in the league when it comes to keeping them out (2.33 goals against per game). More on that in just a bit.

Have some of this

  • AUVITU - Yesterday’s practice lines had him on the fourth line. Come to think of it, yesterday’s practice lines were kind of a mixer. Where’s Toby Petersen?
  • PK WOES: The Oilers yielded two goals while on the PK against the Jets, and that’s after a day where McLellan said they focused on the power play at practice. Short of magic, I’m not sure there’s much that can be done in order to get the home PK above sixty percent on the season.
  • Cam Talbot is a strong bet to start tonight for the Oilers (14-12-2, .905 SV% / 3.01 GAA /1 SO). Jonathan Quick (18-11-2, .927 SV% / 2.27 GAA / 2 SO) is a likely candidate for the Kings. Quick’s stellar SV% is a big reason the Kings aren’t allowing very much to the opposition.
  • SICK BAY: The LA Kings are without Jeff Carter (lower body). Defenceman Christian Folin (upper body) is questionable. The Oilers have no one to list on the injury report at this time.