The Edmonton Oilers:
The Oilers, currently in the midst of a 3-game winning streak, are coming off a dominant 3-1 performance against the lowly Coyotes this past Monday, one in which we saw a variety of players have good looks. Outside of the expected superstars, like McDavid and Draisaitl, Monday saw guys like Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Jordan Eberle play pivotal roles. Cam Talbot is expected to make his league leading 42nd start tonight, and he has been spectacular. A win would mean another day in paradise for Oiler fans, as they would sit pretty in that 2nd place position in the Pacific division.
Player To Watch:
Jordan Eberle, whose goal-less streak has now reached a depressing 13 games, provided one of his best performances of the year against the Coyotes; adding an assist on the RNH goal and creating plenty of grade-A scoring chances. The guy is due for a goal, and one can only think that he is close to FINALLY breaking out. Be sure to keep an eye on #14 tonight in blue and orange.
On the flipside, the Panthers are coming off a disappointing 5-2 loss in Calgary last night, one in which they blew a 2-1 lead midway through the game. The Panthers are just above .500 this season, sporting a record of 20-18-8 but, they did recently defeat the first-place Blue Jackets not that long ago. This will be the second game in a back-to-back for Florida, so they will have to fight through some fatigue if they want to compete with a surging Oilers team. James Reimer is the expected starter tonight, as Roberto Luongo played last night in Calgary.
Player To Watch:
While the primary focus has been on Jaromir Jagr heading into tonight's game, the player to watch for the Panthers will be Vincent Trocheck. Trocheck leads the team in goals and points, having collected his 15th and 16th goals in last night's loss. He'll be looking to stay hot, and if the Panthers want to steal a few points, they'll be looking for him to lead the way.
Patrick Maroon - Connor McDavid - Leon Draisaitl
Benoit Pouliot - Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - Jordan Eberle
Milan Lucic - Drake Caggiula - Anton Slepyshev
Jujhar Khaira - Mark Letestu - Zack Kassian
Oscar Klefbom - Adam Larsson
Andrej Sekera - Kris Russell
Brandon Davidson - Matt Benning
Jared McCann - Vincent Trocheck - Jaromir Jagr
Jonathan Marchessault - Jussi Jokinen - Reilly Smith
Derek MacKenzie - Michael Sgarbossa - Colton Sceviour
Shawn Thornton - Greg McKegg - Paul Thompson
Keith Yandle - Mark Pysyk
Michael Matheson - Jason Demers
Jakub Kindl - Aaron Ekblad
The Oilers capitalize on a tired Panthers team and a weak goaltender in James Reimer, they take this one easily 4-1,
Game is on Sportsnet West at 7:30 MTN
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