Game Day

Oilers Gameday vs LA: The Magic Number Is….

The Oilers are back in action tonight against he Kings, and a regulation win puts the magic number for playoffs at 7. Or maybe 8. Or possibly 11. I DON’T KNOW WHAT A MAGIC NUMBER IS.

(Apparently the magic number is a combination of Edmonton wins and LA losses, and considering the Oilers play the Kings 3 times including tonight, that number could change by 2 today.)

It’s the first day of spring and the Oilers are in the playoff hunt, and nstead of thinking about who wemight get in the draft, we’re worried about who they might play in the first round.

WHAT A TIME TO BE ALIVE.

Tonight’s tilt is a 4-point game, where a regulation win by either team will significantly change that magic number. An Oilers regulation win will reduce it by 2, and a Kings win will increase it by 1 (or maybe 2. Math is hard.)

 

Keys to the Game

Edmonton

  • The Kings played last night in Calgary, and got beat 5-2. They’re probably tired, and both goalies saw action, so the Oilers should be able to capitalize on this weakness.
  • Come out flying and don’t let up the pressure. Cam Talbot needs to be on his game to keep the Oilers in it, but they should manage to hold the Kings in check.

Los Angeles

  • Vancouver held the Oilers to two goals (after they’d scored 14 in their previous two games), and did so through a combination of good goaltending and not-terrible defence. The Kings are better, to a man, than the Canucks could ever hope to be, so they should be able to stay with the Oilers a little better.
  • Whichever goaltender starts, they’ll have to be sharp as both Quick and Bishop played poorly last night.

Players to Watch

Edmonton

  • Matt Hendricks inexplicably draws back into the lineup  in place of Anton Slepyshev, which is curious for a lot of reasons. The justification is that the Oilers need to be bigger to play the Kings, but with Los Angeles having played last night, it shouldn’t be an issue.
  • Connor. No need to explain why.

Los Angeles

  • Drew Doughty is one to watch, after a vicious elbow to the head last night from Matthew Tkachuk. He was down for a while, but didn’t spend any time in the quiet room and was mad after the game about the elbow. He should be okay, but if he’s not 100%, that will likely hamper the Kings effort.
  • Jarome Iginla visits Edmonton for the first time in his new threads, and for as much as Oiler fans are supposed to hate him, Iggy has long been a favourite. While it’ll come at the expense of the Oilers, it would be great to see him get a real shot at a Cup.

Projected Lineups

Edmonton

Patrick Maroon – Connor Mcavid – Leon Draisaitl

Milan Lucic – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Jordan Eberle

Benoit Pouliot – David Desharnais – Zack Kassian

Matt Hendricks – Mark Letestu – Drake Caggiula

Oscar Klefbom – Adam Larsson

Andrej Sekera – Kris Russell

Darnell Nurse – Matt Benning

Cam TalBot

Los Angeles

Dustin Brown – Anze Kopitar – Jarome Iginla

Tanner pearson – Jeff Carter – Tyler Toffoli

Adrian Kempe – Trevor Lewis – Marian Gaborik

Kyle Clifford – Nic Dowd – Andy Andreoff

Derek Forbort – Drew Doughty

Jake Muzzin – Paul Ladue

Kevin Gravel – Alec Martinez

Ben-Jonathan Bishop-Quick

Notes

The magic number is apparently 13. If it’s not, blame Alex Thomas.


 

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