The Oilers return home tonight after an awesome 5 game road trip that saw them go 5-0. I don’t even know the last time they had a 5 game winning streak, but it was at least 3 years ago. Tonight, they face the Los Angeles Kings who are on a streak of their own, having won 4 of their last 5. They did fall to the Canucks in their last game, however, 3-1. In the loss, they also ended up losing Stoll to a groin injury. No Sympathy from the Oilers, however.
The last time these two teams met was November 25, a 3-1 loss. However, that was before the “Awesome Oilers” showed their faces, so hopefully we see a better battle tonight. Heart prediction: 4-3 Oilers in shootout. Brain prediction: 4-2 Kings. I have a feeling the heart is right in this one though.
Edmonton Oilers Projected Line-Up (subject to change)
Los Angeles Kings Projected Line-Up (subject to change)
– Lots of talk lately about Khabibulin being done for the season. No official word on this has come out, so I’m pretty sure that’s just a rumor. In fact, Quinn somewhat denounces that rumor in this quote: “Apparently he had a good day two days ago in his workouts, although he’s still not ready to step on the ice at this point.”
– Horcoff practiced on a line with Stone and Nilsson yesterday. Look for him to play with them tonight, and Stortini to play with Jacques and O’Sullivan.
– Souray and Brule both missed practice yesterday. Brule should go tonight. Souray’s injury is a back injury… and we know from Khabibulin how nagging those can be. It’s possible they may rest Souray tonight.
– We should see Grebeshkov in the lineup tonight in place of Strudwick (unless Souray doesn’t suit up). He practiced yesterday with Gilbert, but that could be just because Souray wasn’t practicing. God I hope so, because I think I’ve seen enough of that pairing.
– Jarret Stoll hurt his groin against the Canucks yesterday and should be out tonight.
– Sniper Matt Greene scored his first goal of the season vs. the Oilers on November 25th.
1ST PERIOD SUMMARY
5:29 – LAK – Richardson from Brown
Grebeshkov can’t handle a pass at the blueline from Staios and Brown blows past him. On the ensuing two on one on Staios, brown fires it across to Richardson who buries it.
– Penner throws the body on Greene, finishing a check.
– O’Sullivan shows some nice early jump on the line with Stortini and Jacques.
– Stortini hammers Scuderi in the corner
– Great blind pass by Potulny as he chipped it behind him to Moreau on the fly, but Moreau wasn’t expecting it. Stick on the ice, kids.
– Brule gets a great scoring chance, skating into the slot and firing it on Quick.
– Great shift by the new Nilsson/Horcoff/Stone line, putting on a great game of keepaway in the LA zone.
– After the LA goal, it’s been pretty much all Oilers. Lots of puck possession.
– Visnovsky blasts a bomb from the point that appears to go in, but it hit Gagner behind th e net. Gagner gets the rebound in the slot and nearly buries it, followed by Brule doing the same, but it stays out due to some crazy magnetic field.
– Souray tears the cover off one that hurts Johnson, who got in the way. He limps off the ice.
– The Kings put on a late rally in the last minute of the period.
2ND PERIOD SUMMARY
3:44 – LAK – Brown from Richardson, Handzus
Richardson beats Visnovsky, and shoots one on goal that Deslaurier kicks right out to Brown. Brown easily puts it into the wide open cage.
12:17 – EDM – Souray from Potulny
Potulny wins the draw back to Souray who wires it past Quick.
– Ivanans and Jacques go at it. Jacques looks pretty outmatched here. He hangs on for dear life, and ends up coming out pretty unscathed but doesn’t really get any punches off. Ivanins gets called for the Instigator on the fight.
– Penner steals a pass through the slot in the Kings zone and gets in all alone on Quick, but Quick makes himself big in the net and makes the save.
– Matt Greene saves a sure goal as a Penner shot gets through Quick’s pads and almost trickles into the Kings net. Greene chips the loose puck out of danger.
– Greene hits Stone from behind hard. Stone gets up and takes Greene’s number.
– Nilsson steals one from an LA defender, and goes in alone on Quick. However, he fires it high over the net.
– Penner almost tips a pass from Gagner, one handed, into the net to tie it up, but Quick made the save. The puck gets behind the net and Gagner manages to flip it out front to Brule who jams away at it, but the force field again keeps it out. But this leads to a powerplay.
3RD PERIOD SUMMARY
3:43 – EDM – Potulny from Souray
Potulny picks the puck up off a pass from Gilbert and goes in on net with Souray. He passes to Souray, and Souray quickly passes it back to Potulny who hammers a slapper into the net.
15:27 – LAK – O’Donnell from Frolov, Williams
Frolov battles dwon low and throws the puck back to the point to O’Donnell. He blasts it from the point through traffic, into the net.
– Williams gets to a rebound off the backboards, but falls on his butt before he can shoot it into the open cage.. lucky.
– Former roommates, Greene and Penner battle for position in front of the net and continue after the whistle… great war! Penner has a big smile after it, but Greener looks pretty serious.
– Souray RIPS a shot that slides up Quick’s stick shaft and off the post.
– This game was already pretty high flying, but it’s picked up a bit even, after the Oilers tied it at 2. End to end action!
– Greene hammers Nilsson and Grebeshkov in back to back hits. Who is that bruiser?? They were both highlight hits, and in a span of about 2 seconds. Never was a Greene fan, but he’s been a force physically, and earning my respect.
– Gagner carries the puck through the Kings zone, across the blue line and is met by a huge hip check from Doughty. He’s noticeably shaken up on the hit. However, he still plays shifts after that play, so looks like he’s fine.
– Moreau bowls over Doughty in the Kings zone.
– The Oilers get a powerplay with 3 minutes left in the game, down 3-2. However Horcoff gets a penalty while on the powerplay.
– The Oilers pull JDD with a minute left and get an icing call. Quinn calls a timeout.
– The Oilers battle hard with the goalie pulled, working it around well and generating chances, but it’s not enough.
Quick earned the first star tonight. Well played game by the Oilers. However the Kings capitalized on their chances. The Oilers got down early, 2-0 and showed great resolve, battling back to tie it 2-2. But unfortunately the Kings got ahead again and the Oilers just couldn’t tie it up again.
Next game, Thursday, on PPV against the Predators at Rexall Place.
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