Detroit comes off a much needed win over the Canucks, scoring five times on one of the league's elite goalies Roberto Luongo. They'll need some more of that type of offensive production again tonight against the Oilers. Nikolai Khabibulin will likely start for the Oilers and Jimmy Howard will start in net for Detroit, coming off his first win of the season in relief effort of Chris Osgood. The top line of Dustin Penner, Sam Gagner, and Ales Hemsky has been good for the Oilers and could make things hard on Detroit if the wrong lines are out there against them.
For my statistical preview of the Oilers from yesterday, click here or simply scroll down.
What to look for: Look for Tomas Holmstrom and Pavel Datsyuk to try and continue on their recent success tonight. Valtteri Filppula is another guy to watch that could get some good offensive chances--passing and shooting--against this Oilers team that allows a good chunk of shots.
Puck drops at 9:30 PM ET and will air on FS-D and TSN. As always, GO WINGS!
Oilers SB Nation member: The Copper & Blue. Derek Zona of The Copper & Blue had this interesting bit on the Oilers:
The Oiler flu has struck. At least 13 players have now been affected by some version of the flu, including H1N1 carrier Ladislav Smid.
Some have played through it - Dustin Penner, Smid, Tom Gilbert - others have either left games or been a scratch - Ales Hemsky, Gilbert Brule, Mike Comrie, Lubomir Visnovsky. Combined with concussions for Sheldon Souray and Steve Staios and a lingering back problem for Fernando Pisani, the Oilers are suffering at this point. Their red-hot start has ground to a halt with the onset of the flu. If Visnovsky is unable to go tonight, the Oilers will have Jason Strudwick, Taylor Chorney, and Theo Peckham in the lineup. It could get ugly.
Complete game coverage here: Red Wings vs Oilers coverage
Edmonton Oilers: 6-5-1 13 pts
Key wins: 6-4 over Columbus, 2-1 over Vancouver
New note on the table, the NHL Rank will now feature a indicator if the ranking given for that team is above or below Detroit's ranking. A=Above, B=Below the ranking that Detroit is currently at.
|Goals per game||3.08||15th (1A)||Scorer (Points)||15 (8 G, 7 A)||Dustin Penner|
|Goals Against per game||2.92||16th (9A)||+/-||+8||Dustin Penner|
|Power Play||19.2%||17th (7B)||Hits||45||Jean-Francois Jacques|
|Penalty Kill||77.8%||18th (7A)||PIM||30||Zack Storntini|
|Shots per game||25.1||28th (23B)||Shots||36||Patrick O'Sullivan|
|Shots against per game||33.3||28th (16B)||Blocked Shots||22||Ladislav Smid|
|Faceoff percentage||48.4%||22nd (7B)||Faceoffs||52.1%||Shawn Horcoff|
|PIM per game||14.6||18th (15B)||Wins||5||Nikolai Khabibulin|
|PP drawn||52||6th (12A)||GAA||3.07||Nikolai Khabibulin|