TALE OF THE TAPE:
Game: Edmonton Oilers (15-18-2) at Vancouver Canucks (13-14-9)
Location: Rogers Arena, Vancouver, British Columbia
Time: 7:00 PM MT
Where to find it: TV: CBC – Radio: 630 CHED
Edmonton Oilers Preview:
Merry belated Christmas to you and your families. I hope the holidays were everything you wanted them to be, and I wish you all the best in 2016.
After a five day break, the Oilers look to get back into the action against our division rival Vancouver Canucks that has lost six of their last ten games. On the other hand, the Oilers are coming into tonight’s game after breaking a three game losing streak after beating the Winnipeg Jets 3-1.
Coach Todd McLellan said no one has lost faith in Talbot despite the disparity in playing time. “Because [Nilsson] had that run doesn’t mean that the group in the room or the coaching staff or anybody else didn’t believe in Cam,” McLellan told the Oilers website Tuesday. “We just ran a hot goalie for a while, and maybe we’ll do that again because obviously Cam played tremendous.”
This is a great opportunity for the team to find their ways of the big win streak earlier. It is still unknown what we have in this team, but as I have stated before I firmly believe this is a team that can compete for the eight to ten spot in the Western Conference standings.
The Oilers begin a 5 game trip against teams in the Pacific Division. If we want any chance at getting advancement in the standings these are the games we need to be winning.
After playing the Canucks in Vancouver tonight, the team visits Calgary tomorrow night. On Tuesday, the Kings come into town while on Thursday the Oilers face off against Anaheim at home. The five game Pacific trip finished Saturday in Edmonton, when the Oilers faceoff against Arizona.
Four points separate the Oilers (32 points, 6th in Pacific) and the Sharks (36 points, 2nd in Pacific).
Vancouver comes out of the break with seven straight home games. Their 14 home games are the second-fewest in the Western Conference, and their five home wins are tied for the fewest in the League. Part of having success at home will be staying out of the penalty box; the Canucks have been shorthanded 125 times, second-most in the League. That includes giving the Tampa Bay Lightning 10 power plays in a 2-1 victory Tuesday. “If the [penalty kill] wasn’t on, that was going to be a 5-1 game or something like that,” forward Jannik Hansen told the Vancouver Province. The Canucks killed nine of 10 Lightning power plays, but for the season they’re 22nd on the penalty kill at 79.2 percent.
Line Combos and Starting Goalies c/o Left Wing Lock:
Oilers (Cam Talbot):
Taylor Hall – Leon Draisaitl – Teddy Purcell
Benoit Pouliot – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins – Jordan Eberle
Matt Hendricks – Mark Letestu – Lauri Korpikoski
Luke Gazdic – Anton Lander – Iiro Pakarinen
Darnell Nurse – Andrej Sekera
Justin Schultz – Mark Fayne
Nikita Nikitin – Eric Gryba
Vancouver Canucks (Jacob Markstrom):
Daniel Sedin – Henrik Sedin – Jannik Hansen
Sven Baertschi – Bo Horvat – Radim Vrbata
Alexandre Burrows – Jared McCann – Derek Dorsett
Adam Cracknell – Linden Vey – Brandon Prust
Alexander Edler – Andrey Pedan
Matt Bartowski – Alex Biega
Ben Hutton – Yannick Weber
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