07 August 2020
4:45 PM MST
Radio: 630 CHED
IT’S DO-OR-DIE TIME
Leon Draisaitl had a pair of goals, Connor McDavid had one on the power play. Edmonton took a couple of undisciplined penalties, Chicago benefitted from some...”creative” calls along the way. The Blackhawks scored two goals in five minutes of the third period (including the go-ahead goal with just 76 seconds remaining in regulation) to slink on out of game 3 with a 4-3 victory.
The Oilers need to win two games in order to advance to the Western Conference quarter finals. They’ll need to do it twice in two days, and it all begins tonight. Can the Oilers pick up a win and take this series to five games?
Let’s go to the tape.
THE OILERS ARES SAYING
“We didn’t get off to the start we wanted...I thought we took over the first period after we got one (penalty), and then just far too many penalties. The refs are calling a lot of stuff, we know that, and just have to be more disciplined”
That’s Oilers captain Connor McDavid after Wednesday’s 4-3 loss to the Blackhawks.
The Oilers took a couple of undisciplined penalties, but the officiating crew didn’t help make matters much better. Chicago went 1/6 on the powerplay.
THE BLACKHAWKS ARE SAYING
“We just believe in ourselves and knew that if you get enough chances, eventually they’re going to go in for us...We just kind of kept digging and playing our game.”
That’s Blackhawks rookie Matthew Highmore.
Highmore scored the game tying goal with under six minutes in the third to make it 3-3.
RYAN NUGENT-HOPKINS - CONNOR MCDAVID - JOSH ARCHIBALD
ANDREAS ATHANASIOU - LEON DRAISAITL - KAILER YAMAMOTO
JAMES NEAL - RILEY SHEAHAN - ZACK KASSIAN
GAETAN HAAS - JUJHAR KHAIRA - ALEX CHIASSON
OSCAR KLEFBOM - ADAM LARSSON
DARNELL NURSE - ETHAN BEAR
KRIS RUSSELL - MATTHEW BENNING
DOMINIK KUBALIK - JONATHAN TOEWS - BRANDON SAAD
ALEX DEBRINCAT - KIRBY DACH - PATRICK KANE
ALEX NYLANDER - DYLAN STROME - JOHN QUENNEVILLE
MATTHEW HIGHMORE - RYAN CARPENTER - DAVE KAMPF
DUNCAN KEITH - ADAM BOQVIST
CALVIN DE HAAN - CONNOR MURPHY
OLLI MAATTA - SLATER KOEKKOEK
HAVE SOME OF THIS
- HAAS TO BE: Tyler Ennis is out for the foreseeable future with a leg injury. I think this causes a bump for Andreas Athansiou, and it should activate Gaetan Haas for tonight’s game. Through parts of three games, Ennis had a point and an assist (1-1-2).
- CONTRACTUAL OBLIGATIONS: Is Zack Kassian in line for a healthy scratch? Just 6:20 in ice time on Wednesday night, down from 10:56 on Monday. When Ennis got injured, Andreas Athanasiou’s ice time went up, while Kassian’s became non-existent.
- NOW MIGHT BE THE BEST TIME TO GET THE BAND BACK TOGETHER: I hope tonight’s game isn’t the last of the season, but if you go out without reuniting the 93/29/56 line for at least a few shifts, there’ll always be that nagging feeling in the back of your mind. Will this push Andreas Athanasiou up top? Maybe. Are we ready for that? i’m more ready for that than I am for James Neal to take that spot. Not really particular about how the goals get scored in an elimination game, but if the 93/29/56 line pops off for a four goals tonight, no one will really mind.
- NET GAINS: Corey Crawford will likely get the nod for Chicago again tonight (2-1-0, .859 SV% / 4.33 GAA). The Oilers ought to go with Mikko Koskinen once again (1-1-0, .886 SV% / 3.21 GAA). We’ll talk about game 5 when we get there, but tonight has got to be Koskinen’s start. Why Koskinen? I trust him not to let in several goals in clusters. If the club goes down 3-0 in the first four minutes, I’ll see you at the draft.
- ONE TO WATCH: Kirby Dach has made noise all series. He’s got 4 points (0-4-4) in three games so far. Dach had the primary assist on Jonathan Toews’ power play goal, which brought the Blackhawks to a 2-1 lead in the dying seconds in Wednesday’s first period.
50/50 UPDATE— Oilers Foundation (@Oil_Foundation) August 6, 2020
The maximum number of tickets available will be increased by 2.5 times for #Oilers online 50/50 presented by @REMAXca with the next draw starting tomorrow at 9am MT!
- 50/50: The 50/50 ballooned up to nearly 5.5 million on Wednesday before sales were capped out. That number could double tonight. If you hit it and need someone to pick you up in a limousine, call me.
- It’s do or die time for the Oilers tonight. Take game 4, then we’ll see you tomorrow night.