EDMONTON OILERS (11-14-1) at
ANAHEIM DUCKS (12-11-4)
6:08 p.m. MST
Rogers Sportsnet West
630 CHED, Oilers Radio Network and online at edmontonoilers.com.
Game Notes | Edmonton/Anaheim Stats Comparison | Player Head-to-Head Statistics
The Edmonton Oilers aim to sweep their home-and-home series and defeat the defending Stanley Cup Champion Anaheim Ducks for the third time this season tonight at the Honda Center in Anaheim.
On Friday, the Oilers played one of their best games of the season, winning by a score of 5-1 over Anaheim. The game was tied until the final minute of the second period when Shawn Horcoff
scored to make it 2-1. Kyle Brodziak tallied 16 seconds later and the Oilers scored two more times in the third period for the win.
The victory moved the Oilers into 12th place in the Western Conference, tied with the Calgary Flames. By virtue of Calgary's OT loss last night, Edmonton sinks back to 13th but is still within striking distance of a playoff spot. A win tonight would move the Oilers three points out of the playoffs and five back of top spot in the Northwest Division.
Anaheim was on a roll before Friday's loss to the Oilers with a record of 8-3-2 in their last 13 games heading in but now are in danger of slumping a little with only two wins in their last six outings.
Just The Facts...
Fernando Pisani has been added to the Oilers' 23-man roster and will make his return to the lineup tonight. The Oilers did not skate this morning but it's expected Dwayne Roloson will start in goal once again.
OILERS TO WATCH:
Two Oilers will be playing their first games of the season tonight for very different reasons. Patrick Thoresen was recalled from Springfield of the AHL on Saturday and plays his first NHL game of the year tonight. He was lighting it up with the Falcons, leading the team with 12 goals and 20 points and a +5 rating. His 12 goals ranks third in the entire AHL... Thoresen played 68 games for Edmonton last year, picking up 16 points... Fernando Pisani is also returning to the lineup tonight after missing the season's first 26 games due to Ulcerative Colitis. He should help provide a spark up front for a team that will be missing both Ales Hemsky
and Geoff Sanderson.
DUCKS TO WATCH:
In the absence of Teemu Selanne and Scott Niedermayer, Ryan Getzlaf continues to be the offensive leader on this Anaheim club. With 28 points, he has eight more than the next closest Duck and also ranks second on the team in plus/minus at +7... Getzlaf's linemate Corey Perry has struggled of late with only one point (a goal) in his last five games for his biggest slump of the season but he's always a threat to break out offensively. Earlier this season he had two points (one goal, one assist) against the Oilers.
Edmonton – Fernando Pisani (colitis) is probable. Ales Hemsky
(knee) is out. Geoff Sanderson (back) is out. Sheldon Souray
(shoulder) is out. Ethan Moreau (foot) is out. Matt Greene (ankle) is out. Dick Tarnstrom (concussion) is out; Anaheim – The Ducks are healthy.
The Ducks are the most penalized team in the NHL, averaging 19.7 minutes per game. Edmonton is 11th fewest in the league, averaging 12.7 minutes per game... Anaheim has been much better at home than on the road this season with an 8-3-3 record at the Honda Center, although one of those wins came when they were the designated "home" team in London, England...Getzlaf ranks among the league's top scorers this season aged 22 years and under. He's currently fourth behind Pittsburgh's Sidney Crosby, Philadelphia's Mike Richards and Evgeni Malkin of the Penguins... Anaheim's shootout fortunes have turned around in a big way starting after their Oct. 30 shootout loss to the Oilers. Since that time, they have won four shootouts - including three on home ice. Prior to their recent run, they had a dismal 2-11 shootout record at the Honda Center... With 47 straight sellouts heading into tonight, the Ducks have the third longest active sellout streak among U.S. teams. Minnesota has 258 straight sellouts while the NY Rangers have 88.
- Dec 2 - Pre-Game Comments from Stoll, Nilsson, Stortini & MacTavish. 700K
- Dec 1 - Off-Day Comments from Stoll, Nilsson, Stortini & MacTavish. 700K
Pisani's return getting closer -
For awhile, it looked like Oilers winger Fernando Pisani would be lost for the entire season, stricken with Ulcerative Colitis. But 26 games later, he is now very close to returning to the lineup. ...more
Oilers recall Patrick Thoresen from Springfield; Dick Tarnstrom placed on NHL Injured Reserve -
The Edmonton Oilers have placed defenceman Dick Tarnstrom on the NHL Injured Reserve List and recalled forward Patrick Thoresen from the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League. ...more
The Other Side
- The Life of Brian - After struggling to find ice time in Washington, Brian Sutherby has been given new life since being acquired by Anaheim in a trade last week. ...more
Odds and Ends
- Matt Greene on Oilers Live this Thursday! - Oilers Live continues this Thursday at 1:00 p.m. when Matt Greene will be our guest. Follow the link to ask Matt a question. Ask a Question
From the Wire
The Edmonton Oilers have had little trouble beating the Anaheim Ducks at home of late. They've also been pretty successful against Anaheim on the road, something that bodes well for the Oilers as they look to complete a home-and-home sweep at Honda Center on Sunday.
Edmonton (11-14-1) won 5-1 over the Ducks on Friday for its 14th victory in its last 15 home games versus Anaheim. It was the fourth time the Oilers scored at least five goals in a game this season. They scored five or more goals just eight times last season, when they recorded an NHL-low 195 goals.
The Oilers' 64 goals this season are still among the fewest in the NHL, but Friday's outburst is something the team will look to build on.
"We haven't had goals like that all year really," said Edmonton coach Craig MacTavish, whose club put 35 shots on goal Friday in winning for the third time in four contests. "We had great shots and some really nice goals. Hopefully that is a sign of things to come."
Edmonton plays just its second road contest in nine games Sunday. The Oilers are 4-7-1 away from Rexall Place, though they've won two of their last three on the road.
The Oilers will be trying for their second straight victory at Anaheim after winning 3-2 in a shootout there Oct. 28. Though it lost both road meetings with the Ducks last season, Edmonton has won six of its last nine at Anaheim.
Shawn Horcoff had a goal and two assists Friday and Ales Hemsky added his fourth goal in his last five games for the Oilers.
"Hopefully it builds some confidence," said Edmonton defenseman Steve Staios, who also scored Friday. "We've been having a tough time offensively. It's nice to see some guys get rewarded. The lack of offense hasn't been a lack of effort. The guys have been working hard and hopefully this is a good confidence boost for them."
Hemsky, second to team leader Horcoff with nine goals and 20 points, left Friday's game with a knee contusion and is listed as day-to-day. Hemsky and Andrew Cogliano, who had a goal Friday, each have two goals in two games versus Anaheim this season.
Dwayne Roloson made 21 saves for the Oilers for his third win in four starts.
Anaheim (12-11-4) suffered its fourth loss in six games Friday and finished 1-2-0 on a road swing through western Canada.
Ryan Getzlaf's 11th goal was the only one for the Ducks, who couldn't build on a 4-1 win at Calgary on Thursday after losing 4-0 at Vancouver on Tuesday.
"We've got to go out and compete and we didn't do that," Anaheim captain and former Oiler Chris Pronger said.
Getzlaf has a goal and two assists in his last two games after his eight-game point streak was snapped against the Canucks.
Anaheim's Jean-Sebastien Giguere was pulled Friday in favor of Jonas Hiller after allowing four goals on 23 shots. Giguere has allowed four goals in two of his last three starts and has been in goal for both losses to Edmonton this season.
The teams close out their season series Dec. 27 at Edmonton.