LOS ANGELES KINGS (17-27-2) at
EDMONTON OILERS (21-21-4)
7:08 p.m. MST
Molson Canadian Oilers Pay Per View
630 CHED, Oilers Radio Network and online at edmontonoilers.com.
Game Notes | Oilers/Kings Stats Comparison | Player Head-to-Head Statistics
The Edmonton Oilers wrap up a five-game homestand tonight against the Los Angeles Kings looking for their fifth win after earning a victory in their last four outings.
Edmonton’s recent stretch has enabled them to keep pace with a tough Western Conference in the race for the eighth and final playoff spot. The Oilers are five points behind eighth-place Colorado.
After a disastrous December that saw them lose eight straight games at one point, the Kings are at a juncture in their season where their performance has been up and down recently. Following the eight-game losing streak, the Kings won three in a row including a big 9-2 win over Chicago on January 1. However, they followed that up with three straight losses that included a 7-0 loss at home to Nashville. Recently, the Kings have won two in a row with their last win coming over Dallas 4-3 in a shootout on Saturday.
The Kings are coming off a six-game homestand and open a three-game Western Canada road trip tonight in Edmonton. With 36 points, the Kings have eight fewer points than any other team in the Western Conference.
This is the third of four meetings between these two teams and first in Edmonton. Los Angeles won 4-1 on October 27 and Edmonton won 4-3 in a shootout on December 3.
Just The Facts...
TONIGHT'S GAME ON MOLSON CANADIAN OILERS PPV:
Tonight's game can be seen on Molson Canadian Oilers PPV. Head out to a local establishment to watch the game or order it in the comfort of your own home. Click here for information on how to order the game
LINEUP UPDATE (12:23 PM):
The Oilers will be going with the same lineup as Sunday with Patrick Thoresen and Dick Tarnstrom still on the sidelines and Mathieu Garon starting in goal.
OILERS TO WATCH:
Former King Mathieu Garon has been a big reason for the Oilers’ recent surge. He has started six straight games for Edmonton and has a 5-1 record in those games with a 1.96 goals-against average and .936 save percentage… Three different Oilers come into tonight’s game on a four-game scoring streak. Shawn Horcoff
has picked up three goals and eight points in the past four games – two points in each game. He will be representing the Oilers at the 2008 NHL All-Star Game in Atlanta and has 19 goals and 43 points in 46 games… Ales Hemsky
has two goals and five assists for seven points in his last four games while Jarret Stoll has two goals and three assists for five points as part of his four-game streak… Joni Pitkanen only played in one of the two previous games between Edmonton and Los Angeles this season but in that game he had a goal and an assist to help the Oilers to a 4-3 shootout win.
KINGS TO WATCH:
Anze Kopitar is the Kings’ leading scorer this season with 42 points in 46 games. With 18 goals already, Kopitar should easily eclipse his total of 20 set last season during his rookie campaign… Dustin Brown has already surpassed his career high of 17 goals set last year in 81 games. Through 44 games, Brown has 22 goals to lead the Kings in that category… With only nine goals through 35 games, Alexander Frolov is not anywhere near his total of 35 goals set last season but he has been more of a playmaker this season with 25 assists. In 2006-07, Frolov had a career high 36 helpers – a number he should reach easily this year.
Edmonton – Matt Greene (ankle) is out. Raffi Torres (knee) is out; Los Angeles – Kevin Dallman (broken foot) is out. Mike Cammalleri (broken rib) is out.
The Oilers have now won four straight games for the first time since winning five in a row from November 13-24, 2006... Shawn Horcoff
’s power play goal on Sunday extended the team's season-high streak to six straight games with a power play goal. Their power play in the last six games is 7-for-28 which is 25.0%... Last time the Oilers had a power play goal in six straight games was December 15-26, 2005… The Oilers have also not allowed a power play goal in three straight dating back to January 5 against the NY Rangers. They have killed off their last 12 penalties.
- Garon, Souray, Horcoff, Gagner, Gilbert & MacTavish talk about completing their 5-game homestand tonight vs. the Kings. 700K
Power play starting to take off -
The Edmonton Oilers head into tonight’s contest with the Los Angeles Kings having won four straight games. They’ve also scored a power play goal in six straight. Coincidence? Oilers head coach Craig MacTavish doesn’t think so. ...more
Garon named NHL's 2nd Star of the Week -
Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mathieu Garon has been named the second star in the NHL's weekly "Three Stars" program for the week ending January 13th. ...more
The Other Side
- Interesting week for Barbs - Jason LaBarbera had an interesting week. First he was pulled in the first period vs. Nashville on Tuesday, then sets a career high for saves on Thursday, then makes a highlight reel save and stops three of four in the shootout on Saturday. ...more
Item of the Game
- Tonight's item of the game is an Adult Triumph Long Sleeve Top. (Regular $44.99 on sale for $29.99) and a Youth Triumph Long Sleeve Top. (Regular $29.99 on sale for $22.99)
From the Fans
Odds and Ends
- Autograph Session photos and video - On Saturday, every Edmonton Oilers player went to West Edmonton Mall to take part in the team's autograph session. The players were spread out across the mall at 11 different tables. View video and photos from the autograph session. ...more
- Homes by AVI Junior Reporter - Homes by AVI Junior Reporter Breydon Berthold talked to Oilers forward Zack Stortini following an optional skate on Sunday. Follow the link to watch the video in Oilers TV or click the play button above. ...more
From the Wire
The Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings have been among the Western Conference's worst teams for most of the season, but they're both playing quality hockey right now.
The Kings look to win their third straight game while the Oilers hope to finish off a perfect five-game homestand when the teams meet Tuesday at Rexall Place.
The Oilers (21-21-4) remain in last place in the Northwest Division, but they have won four in a row for the first time since a five-game streak in November 2006.
They beat Calgary 2-1 on Sunday, a win Edmonton center Shawn Horcoff called "a big step" and coach Craig MacTavish called "as complete a game as we have played from start to finish this season."
"We're playing better," MacTavish said. "This was a really solid game for us. It was another one-goal win but at the same time it wasn't indicative of some of the other ones where we are trying to hang on at the end. We had lots of chances in the third period to widen the lead."
Horcoff had a goal and an assist for Edmonton, and has scored two points in each game of the winning streak for a total of three goals and five assists. Overall this season, he leads the Oilers with 19 goals and 43 points.
Goalie Mathieu Garon, who played two years for the Kings before signing with Edmonton last offseason, has a 1.23 goals-against average during the homestand. He has made six straight starts, supplanting former starter Dwayne Roloson, and had 27 saves against the Flames.
"It was a huge win," Garon said. "We wanted to win as much as possible on this homestand and right now we are doing a really good job. I think the way everyone is playing, there is so much confidence right now."
After Tuesday's game, the Oilers play five in a row on the road.
The Kings (17-27-2) have played their last six at home, and are beginning a three-game tour of western Canada. They own the league's worst record, but have won two straight including a 4-3 shootout win over Dallas on Saturday.
Dallas took an early 2-0 lead, but Kings goalie Jason LaBarbera stopped 18 of the Stars' last 19 shots and three of four shootout attempts, ending his up-and-down week on a positive note.
Last Tuesday against Nashville, LaBarbera was pulled after just 6:40 when he allowed three goals on seven shots in an eventual 7-0 loss, but he rebounded to make a career-high 48 saves in a 5-2 win over Toronto on Thursday.
"The biggest thing is staying positive," said LaBarbera, who is 2-0-0 with a 1.00 GAA lifetime against Edmonton. "When you get down two goals, before I would be negative. And you can't play that way. The rest of the game I tried to stay upbeat, not worry about what the score was, and just focus on the rest of the game and helping the team win."
The Kings lost 4-3 in a shootout at home to Garon and the Oilers on Dec. 3, one of Edmonton's 11 wins in 13 shootouts this season.
Los Angeles beat the Oilers 4-1 on Oct. 27 - also at home - but the Kings have lost four of their last five at Edmonton.