Tonight the Edmonton Oilers face the defending Stanley Cup Champions – the Los Angeles Kings. The Kings would probably like to use their Stanley Cup hangover as an excuse, but in a lockout season, that won’t fly too well. They’re off to an 0-2 start so far with a 5-2 loss to the Blackhawks on opening night, and a 3-1 loss to the Avalanche on Tuesday night. The Oilers narrowly squeaked out a 3-2 shootout, comeback win vs. the Canucks on Sunday and had their asses handed to them vs. the Sharks on Tuesday (6-3).
I think the Oilers let their reputation of being a much improved, solid team play the first period for them on Tuesday as the Sharks racked up 6 goals in the period. Brutal. They seemed to wake up in the 2nd and 3rd, but by then it was too late. The Oilers got into some early penalty trouble (including a 3-on-5), and the Sharks capitalized. They scored on every (3) powerplay in the 1st period.
The Oilers are going to need a much better start tonight vs. the Kings, and will need to keep it going. To be cliche, they will need to play a complete 60+ minutes. Waiting on news from Twitter as to any lineup changes, but hopefully we finally see Mark Fistric. I’ll be watching this one in person tonight, by the way… so I hope it’s a big win.
OILERS LINES (PROJECTED)
Hall – Nugent-Hopkins – Eberle
Yakupov – Gagner – Hemsky
Smyth – Horcoff – Paajarvi
Hartikainen – Belanger – Petrell
Smid – Petry
N. Schultz – J. Schultz
Whitney – Fistric