Game Notes Oilers @ Wild: Winny In Minny?

Photo credit:Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Gregor
1 year ago
Edmonton and Minnesota haven’t had a three-game set where it was win one, lose one, win one since 2015. The Oilers will try to extend that tonight by winning consecutive games over the Wild. Edmonton last defeated the Wild in consecutive games on December 7th, 2018, and February 7th, 2019. The Wild won the next seven before Friday’s loss.
— Edmonton arrived in Minnesota with a road record of 7-5. Only Columbus (8) has played fewer road games than the Oilers, although eight other teams have also only played 12 road games. The Oilers will play seven on the road (four at home) in February and then four on the road (two at home) in April to make up the road-home game deficit. While the Oilers are tied for 22nd in road games played, they are 13th in wins with seven. They have been decent on the road and will need at least one win either tonight in Minnesota or tomorrow in Nashville to
— Last season 15 teams won more than half of their road games. Edmonton was one of them and Vegas was the only one who didn’t make the playoffs. Winning more than half of your road games usually puts you in the playoffs. Since 2013-14, 113 teams have won more than half their road games and 105 made the playoffs. Six of those eight who missed won 21 games. The 2016 Bruins were the major outlier when they won 25 games on the road, but only 17 at home and missed the playoffs by three points. Edmonton has been solid on the road and is on pace to win 23 road games. They need to continue their solid road play on this trip.
— Connor McDavid is riding a career-best seven-game goal scoring streak. His previous high was six (last year) and he he’s had two streaks of five games. He has nine goals and 18 points during his streak.
—  Dave Lumley owns the Oilers franchise record with goals in 12 consecutive games followed by Jari Kurri (10), Wayne Gretzky (9), Gretzky (8, twice), and McDavid is tied for 6th longest with Gretzky (twice), Kurri, Glenn Anderson and Jimmy Carson. Charlie Simmer (1980) owns the modern-era record at 13 games, while Punch Broadbent went 16 games in 1922 and Joe Malone had a 14-game streak in 1917.
— The Wild haven’t been dominant at home going 7-6-1, but the games have been high-scoring. The total goals in their last seven home games has been 10, 3, 7, 7, 7, 8, and 9. They went 4-2-1 with two OT wins over Carolina and Anaheim.
— This is the third meeting between these two teams this month. Minnesota was victorious 5-3 on December 1st and the Oilers won 5-2 on Friday. Edmonton must limit the Wild’s chances from the slot. The shots from the slot were 14-2 in favour of Minny 12 days ago and the Wild had 16 in Friday’s loss. Minnesota is third best in the NHL at creating inner slot shots. They drive to the net constantly, with and without the puck, and the Oilers defenders will need to either box them out or tie up their sticks in hopes of reducing their chances. The issues is no team has been able to do it consistently.
— Since returning from a concussion that cost him 13 games, Kailer Yamamoto has played quite well. He has three points in three games. His first goal of the season was the game winner on Friday. He has also outscored teams 4-1 at 5×5. “Ever since I came back, I’ve been feeling really good, feeling more like myself, he said yesterday. “I’m happy I’m able to get on the board now, but I would have liked to have done that in the first 13 games,”
Yamamoto had a slow start offensively, to put it lightly, but he’s always been a streaky scorer and with Evander Kane sidelined and McDavid playing with Draisaitl the Oilers really need him and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins to keep scoring.
— Warren Foegele is getting close to playing. He has skated with the team for a few days, but he didn’t go on the two-game trip. The earliest he will return is Thursday. He was playing quite well before suffering a core injury in Florida.
— Hands up who had a line of Klim Kostin, Devin Shore, and Derek Ryan stepping up to provide offence for the Oilers? Not only are they scoring, but they aren’t getting scored on. They’ve outscored teams 3-1 at 5×5 since being put together. When Foegele and Ryan McLeod return the line could be broken up, but for a short time they have played quite well. Kostin has added much-needed grit and edge to the Oilers bottom six, but he also skates well and has a good shot. Skilled size is something the Oilers need more of in the bottom six, and he has provided it.
— Also, if you are a fan who thinks skilled size means slow then you are the problem. If you still think it means Ben Eager or Lennart Petrell that is your problem. It doesn’t. Edmonton has added Evander Kane, Zach Hyman, Foegele, Mattias Janmark, and Kostin as skilled players with size the past few seasons. Hyman is the shortest at 6’1”, and Foegele the lightest at 200 pounds. They’ve added top-six guys with size and skill and bottom six with size and skill relative to the line they play on. Oilers Twitter would be much better if people understood what skilled size means. End rant.


Thank you to everyone who donated in the Pyramid of Giving on Friday and to GS Construction for generously offering to match the $7500 pyramid, so we raised over $15K for The Christmas Bureau.
Day Eight: Suite for Oilers v. Kraken
Oct 7, 2022; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; Edmonton Oilers defensemen Darnell Nurse (25) takes a shot in front of Seattle Kraken forward Daniel Strong (91) during the third period at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
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