logo

Monday Mailbag – Biggest Oilers key to victory for Game 7?

alt
Photo credit:Tom Kostiuk
baggedmilk
29 days ago
Happy Monday, friends! Welcome to a brand new Monday Mailbag. This week, we’re discussing keys to winning Game 7, Stuart Skinner, the Eastern Conference Final, and a whole lot more. If you’ve got a question you’d like to ask, email it to me at baggedmilk@oilersnation.com or hit me up on Twitter at @jsbmbaggedmilk , and I’ll get to you as soon as we can.
May 18, 2024; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; The Edmonton Oilers celebrate a goal scored by forward Evander Kane (91) during the third period against the Vancouver Canucks in game six of the second round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Rogers Place.
1) Cian asks – The Oil pushed the series to seven games, but what do they need to do to make sure we don’t get another version of Game 5?
Jason Gregor:
I’d be shocked if their top line was as bad in Game 7 as they were in Game 5. Edmonton has controlled the majority of play in every game except Game 5. It was the outlier, so the Oilers just need to play like they have in the other games. They will need to match the energy and pace of Vancouver. They will be fired up in front of their home crowd.
Tyler Yaremchuk:
Keep up the fast, physical style of play. They forced the Canucks to make a lot of turnovers and caught them flat-footed a lot. That resulted in a lot of their quality scoring chances. If they keep up that combination and physical play and skill, they’ll over power the Canucks.
Zach Laing:
They need to replicate their Game 6 performance. It sounds simple, but it really is. The Oilers played with pace and were hard on the Canucks all night, and it was the difference-maker in that game.
Liam Horrobin:
Executing on the power play would help. Back-to-back games they’ve struggled to score but I can’t see that happening for a third straight game. Additionally, the top six was bad in back 40 of game 5 and in another do or die situation they can’t have that happen again.
Baggedmilk:
If the Oilers play their game, they’re going to be fine. In Game 5, the Oilers let the Canucks do their thing instead of trying to dictate the pace of play, and that can’t happen again.
Mar 2, 2024; Seattle, Washington, USA; Edmonton Oilers goaltender Stuart Skinner (74) and defenseman Vincent Desharnais (73) celebrate defeating the Seattle Kraken at Climate Pledge Arena.
2) Gregg asks – Biggest key to victory for the Oilers to win Game 7 tonight?
Jason Gregor:
Play fast. Edmonton has more speed than the Canucks, and when they play fast, not just skating, but with their passing and forecheck they are the better team.
Tyler Yaremchuk:
On top of what I said in my first answer, they need to capitalize on their scoring chances. It’s winner take all and in one game, a couple of goal posts or missed nets could decide the game. They need to bear down and finish their looks.
Zach Laing:
The Oilers are going to need some depth scoring. Vancouver will be able to match J.T. Miller on Connor McDavid, and despite the Oilers losing that matchup 0-2 in terms of 5v5 goals in the first five games, McDavid scored two in 3:55 in Game 6. I’d expect that matchup to happen again in Game 7 tonight, meaning the Oilers second and third lines will need to find a way to score at 5v5.
Liam Horrobin:
Keep the offence rolling and avoid major errors.
Baggedmilk:
Play simple hockey, support each other, and don’t try to cheat for offence. When the Oilers have their details dialled in, they’re very tough to beat.
May 10, 2024; Vancouver, British Columbia, CAN; Edmonton Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner (74) in the net against the Vancouver Canucks during the first period in game two of the second round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Rogers Arena. Mandatory Credit: Bob Frid-USA TODAY Sports
3) Oilers fan in Van asks – Was anyone else surprised to see Kris Knoblauch go back to Stuart Skinner for Game 6 when Calvin Pickard was so good the two games before?
Jason Gregor:
No. It made sense. Skinner is your guy.  They don’t need either goalie to be great to win, just be steady and Skinner was in Game 6.
Tyler Yaremchuk:
I wasn’t surprised. There is something to be said about going with the guy who has the highest ceiling and has been your guy all season. The decision paid off too. Not that Skinner had to be unreal, but he was very solid.
Zach Laing:
At first, yes, but the more I thought about it the more it made sense. Skinner has been the Oilers’ guy all year long, and I thought there were times that Pickard looked tired in Game 5, especially late. Skinner was refreshed and helped the Oilers win Saturday night.
Liam Horrobin:
No, because Stuart Skinner was your guy all season. The trust has been built and eventually you’d have to go back to him if you wanted to go far. Also, Pickard playing three games is fine, but are you playing him Game 7 too? Feels bold.
Baggedmilk:
I was a little bit surprised, but that’s also why I love sports. Stu was steady and effective in Game 6, and they’ll need him to do it again. He’s the guy that got us to the playoffs, and Skinner is the guy that’s going to help us win it all.
May 18, 2024; Edmonton, Alberta, CAN; The Edmonton Oilers celebrate a goal scored by forward Dylan Holloway (55) during the first period against the Vancouver Canucks in game six of the second round of the 2024 Stanley Cup Playoffs at Rogers Place. Mandatory Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
4) Mitch asks – Every game in the series between the Oilers and Canucks has been tight, but what has been the biggest difference maker in your opinions?
Jason Gregor:
Edmonton should have finished this series already. The blew a 4-1 lead in Game 1 and outshot Van 45-18 in Game 3, but didn’t bury their chances. Skinner didn’t help them in either game, and if he plays steady tonight, Edmonton should win.
Tyler Yaremchuk:
Goaltending. Simple as that. When the Oilers got decent goaltending, they won and this series would already be over if they got solid goaltending from the jump.
Zach Laing:
I’ve written about it a few times in my Day After’s, but the Oilers have really gotten away from their own game during multiple stretches of this series. They’ve let the Canucks dictate the play, and that isn’t something that was in their game much at all during the regular season.
Liam Horrobin:
Goaltending and poor execution of offence. When you look at the Oilers losses, it’s been either one of those issues. Game 3 was a huge standout because the Oilers didn’t get either goaltending of offence, but still only lost by one goal. The Oilers can survive without consistent goaltending, but the offence needs to be there.
Baggedmilk:
Goaltending. When the Oilers get steady goaltending, they’re the better team. Simple as that.
Mar 19, 2024; New York, New York, USA; New York Rangers left wing Artemi Panarin (10) jumps over a shot by New York Rangers forward Alexis Lafreniere (13) during the third period against the Winnipeg Jets at Madison Square Garden.
5) Cliff asks – Who does everyone have in the Eastern Conference Final between the Rangers and Panthers?
Jason Gregor:
It should be a great series. I will take Florida in six.
Tyler Yaremchuk:
Give me the Rangers in 7. I think they’re too deep and too skilled. Shesterkin should be a difference maker as well.
Zach Laing:
Boy, what a tough series to get a read on. The Rangers are playing very, very good hockey right now, so I could see them taking this series, but Florida won’t go down without a fight. Rangers in 7.
Liam Horrobin:
The Florida Panthers are my pick. They’re such a tough team to play against, and I love their offence. Igor Shesterkin might have a thing to say about this prediction though.
Baggedmilk:
This one is going to be intense, but I think I’ll take the Panthers. Let’s go Florida in seven.

MAILBAG PRESENTED BY STAR MECHANICAL

Star Mechanical is Edmonton’s top plumbing and heating company. Our team of skilled professionals is committed to helping with all your plumbing and heating needs, from repairs and maintenance to installation and upgrades. With years of experience and a reputation for quality workmanship, you can trust us your local Star to get the job done. Visit us at starmechanical.ca to schedule an appointment and let us help keep your home running smoothly.

Check out these posts...