By Michael Walters
The Anaheim Ducks(14-15-6) continue their road trip as they head into Edmonton to face the Oilers(15-20-3). The Ducks are ahead of the Oilers by just one point and tonight will be another big divisional game. Tonight’s contest starts at 6PM PST.
The Ducks have played the Oilers once this season and lost 4-3 in OT on Veteran’s day. In that game Corey Perry scored twice and Shawn Horcoff scored once, but the Ducks could never pull away from the Oilers. The game went overtime and the Oilers pulled out the victory. For highlights visit: Oilers Scrap By Ducks In OT
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Keys To The Game:
1. Repeat Performance: The Ducks played extremely well on defense in the last contest and in all areas of the game. If they can keep repeating that type of effort, then they increase their chances of earning two points each night.
2. Face-offs: The Ducks are third best in the league at winnings face-offs with a winning percentage of 51.6%. This is going to continue to be key for the Ducks as they try to climb up in the Pacific Division standings.
1. Defense: Edmonton gives up the third most goals per game at 3.11 goals. They need to keep the Ducks to two goals or less tonight.
2. Penalties: The Oilers don’t take many penalties and only average 7.6 minutes in penalties per game. If they can stay out of the box, then they have a better chance to win tonight’s contest. Their penalty kill is 19th in the league at 79.8% efficiency.
Players To Watch:
1. Shawn Horcoff: He has scored in back-to-back games. He had a breakaway goal against Philadelphia and the game-winning goal against the Calgary Flames. Horcoff returns to Edmonton where he played for 12 NHL seasons.
2. Hampus Lindholm: With Cam Fowler out for several games, Lindholm is going to have to log more ice time to cover the gap. It would be good for him to produce some more points. He currently has two goals and six assists.
1. Taylor Hall: He leads the team with 15 goals and 40 total points. He also leads the team in power play goals(3) and game-winning goals(5).
2. Leon Draisaitl: He tied for second on the team in goals with nine. He is also second on the team in total points with 31. He has four points in his last five games.
Anaheim Ducks Projected Lineup (Per NHL.com):
The Ducks lineup has been the same for the last two games and it has produced two wins. It appears Bruce Boudreau will go with the same offensive lineup. The D-pairings are listed, but seem to change based on game flow with Fowler being out.
Edmonton Oilers Projected Lineup (Per NHL.com):
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