Monday, April 2, 2012
Pre-Game: Game #80 Oilers vs. Kings
Winning feels good, even if it is an "end of the season" nothing game. Winning also hurts, in a sacrificing the body type way. There is a lot more to winning than scoring a butt tonne of goals, smiling for the cameras while the women fawn over you. Some of it is subtle and goes unnoticed at times. A blocked shot, an effective takeout, even a successful off the glass and out so your linemates can get a line change in, are all things that winning teams develop. The Oilers are still at a stage in their development where they think of themselves in an individual sense. What they need to do is start thinking about what play is for the greater good of the team. Sad thing is, its been the vets that have been more guilty of this than the rookies. The "buy-in" needs to occur ASAP. The vets are here to take care of their own zone first, and eventually incorporate an effective transition game. This is why I think, in the offseason, the Oilers would be wise to shop for strength down the middle, some speed and strength on the wings and some speed on the backend. This would allow the Oilers to use their outside speed while still be able to clog up the middle defensively. To go along with enhancing a quicker transition game. Impressed with Chris Vandevelde's play on his recent callup. Playing within himself, knowing when to attack and when to stay back, a good sign for a center trying to bust on to the NHL scene. Vandevelde's play has pushed Belanger to the wing. The Kings are coming of a 4-3 shootout loss to the Wild. The Kings beat the Oilers 3-1 on Friday night. Ales Hemsky will be a game time decision.
- The Oilers offense has dried up while the Kings seem to have found a bit of a scoring groove.
- Well balanced defense for the Kings while the Oilers are injury riddled.
- Jonathan Quick will likely be in the Vezina hunt.
Special Teams Oilers
- Oilers PP and PK are 2nd & 14th while the Kings are 23rd & 4th.
- Darryl Sutter seems to find ways to be able to beat the Oilers.
- Oilers are on the 2nd half of a back to back even though its only a 45 minute drive from Anaheim to Los Angelas.
Game Time - 8:30 PM MT @ Los Angelas on Sportsnet West.