Thursday, January 31, 2013
Pre-Game: Game #7 Oilers vs. Sharks
The Oilers are streaking heading into San Jose. With the Oilers home opener still fresh in their minds, a 6-3 beatdown from the Sharks on Oilers ice, the Oilers are looking to repay the favor tonight. The Oilers coming of an odd 2-1 overtime win last night in Phoenix, the Oilers will be looking to continue to add to the win total. The Sharks come into this game 6-0 and looking to keep that streak alive. The Oilers are coming into San Jose on 2nd half of a back to back facing an undefeated club is the tall task that faces them tonight. Win or lose, each game is a building block for the Oilers. They have to take something from each game. Last night, the Oilers took the fact that the game is never over until its over. The Oilers could have folded after giving up that backbreaking tying goal. But they kept playing away, chiselling at the mental will of the Coyotes, which ultimately lead to the game winner from Nail Yakupov. This test will be a lot in the same as it was last night. The Oilers will have to navigate through the bigger bodies of the Sharks, much like Coyotes from last night. The difference lies in the potent scoring ability the Sharks possess. The Sharks are rolling, so trying to derail them is going require the Oilers draining the energy tank tonight. Shawn Horcoff got his bell rung by Shane Doan last night. Reinforcements may be on the way from Oklahoma City.
- Patrick Marleau is an early favorite for MVP and Joe Thornton has been Joe Thornton. The kids will have to find a way to produce offense as they were effictively shutdown last night.
- Sharks have an excellent blend of offensive and defensive defensemen. To go along with most of them being veterans. Oilers D is slowly starting to find its way with some consistancy.
- As much as I want to believe in Dubnyk in this spot, its hard to go against Antti Niemi's 1.97 GAA and .933 S% early on this season.
Special Teams Sharks
- Oilers have the 2nd best powerplay in the NHL, so how I can I go against them? The Sharks have the best powerplay in the NHL.
- The addition of Larry Robinson to Todd McLellan's staff looks to be paying immediate dividends. Oilers' Ralph Krueger is doing well with the mix he has.
- A clean sweep for the Sharks and this is going to be a tough game to win for the Oilers when they played in Phoenix last night while the Sharks had the night off.
Game Time - 8:30 PM MT @ San Jose on Sportsnet West