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GAME PREVIEW: Edmonton Oilers @ Vancouver Canucks

Oilers head to BC looking to start a win streak

NHL: Los Angeles Kings at Vancouver Canucks Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports

Edmonton Oilers (19-16-2), 6th, Pacific)

Vancouver Canucks (18-19-4, 7th, Pacific)

25 January 2022

Rogers Arena

8 PM MT

TV: Sportsnet

Radio: 630 CHED

SB Nation Opponent: Nucks Misconduct

FINALLY, RAIN

Mikko Koskinen turned aside 44 of 47 total shots, Evan Bouchard had a pair of goals on the power play, Leon Draisaitl had a four point night and the Edmonton Oilers took two points from their provincial rivals to the south. It was Edmonton’s first win in over 300 years a month. A small weight was lifted from everyone’s shoulders, if only for an evening. Brendan Perlini scored a goal after being moved from the first to the fourth line. One of these days, things had to bounce Edmonton’s way. Saturday was the night, and everyone is glad that it happened on the night they played Calgary.

The Oilers will look to go on a little winning streak as they are in Vancouver to face a rejuvenated Canucks squad that’s gone 10-4-2 since Bruce Boudreau was hired. Can the Oilers take two points in BC tonight?

Let’s go to the tape.

THE OILERS ARE SAYING

“I think a big part of putting it through is making sure it gets past the first guy...Luckily for me Jesse [Puljujarvi] was doing a great job at net-front, he was doing the dirty work in front and that’s how goals come.”

Source

That’s Evan Bouchard after scoring two goals in Edmonton’s 5-3 win over the Calgary Flames on Saturday night.

With Tyson Barrie out with both lower body and upper body injuries on Saturday, it was time for Evan Bouchard to shine. Good things happen when you put Evan Bouchard on the power play unit, he was rewarded with a pair. Park him there for the next month and get back to us.

THE CANUCKS ARE SAYING

“Right now, we’re having a hard time scoring...We have a couple of breakaways here and there, a couple of great looks. I’m really happy with the way they worked and the way they cared, just I expect to win every time we go on the ice, so I’m unhappy with that result.”

Source

That’s Canucks head coach Bruce Boudreau on his club’s 3-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues on Sunday.

Vancouver ran into a hot goaltender in Ville Husso, who turned aside all but one of Vancouver’s 39 shots. The game was Boudreau’s 1000th as an NHL coach.

HAVE SOME OF THIS

  • 3C?: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins went on LTIR late last week which sent a signal to the bat cave that something was afoot in the trade waters. The Oilers are now able to exceed the cap by Nugent-Hopkins’ 5.125MM for as long as he’s on LTIR, which...doesn’t appear to be that much longer. Nugent-Hopkins centred a third line with Zack Kassian and Brendan Perlini at practice, and is expected to be back tonight. Credit to Perlini for a big goal in Saturday’s game against Calgary. Nobody likes the Flames anyway.
  • SCORE SOME MORE: Leon Draisaitl’s four point night puts him atop the scoring chase in a three-way tie with Washington’s Alexander Ovechkin and Florida’s Jonathan Huberdeau. Connor McDavid is fourth with 55.
  • UNPLUGGED: The Canucks have the league’s worst PK so far this season at 67%.
  • Tyson Barrie is expected to miss tonight’s game, which should clear the way for Evan Bouchard to get time on the top power play unit again, as it should be. Zach Hyman is also expected to be out, as is goaltender Mike Smith. Ryan McLeod was on the first line with McDavid and Kailer Yamamoto in yesterday’s practice, there’s a fair shot that’s what we see tonight.
  • SILLY; Tyler Benson was on the extras line yesterday, which is just silly. It’s even sillier when you consider that Hyman is out and Devin Shore is in, but Benson is expected to be a healthy scratch. Shore an OK 14th forward in a pinch, but there’s no reason Benson should be away from this lineup if he’s healthy.
  • It’s hard to turn away from Mikko Koskinen’s 44 save performance against the Flames on Saturay, which leads me to believe he’ll be the starter in tonight’s matchup. Vancouver’s goaltending situation is even more dicey than Edmonton’s right now with Thatcher Demko Jaroslav Halak and Spencer Martin in Covid protocols. Michael DiPietro appeared in Vancouver’s 3-1 loss to the Blues on Sunday with emergency backup goaltender Rylan Toth.

A win for Edmonton tonight would start a little streak. Can the Oilers make it two in a row?