SAN JOSE SHARKS (29-5-5) at
EDMONTON OILERS (19-17-3)
Start Time: 7:08 p.m. MST
Television: Rogers Sportsnet West (HD)
Radio: 630 CHED, Oilers Radio Network and online at edmontonoilers.com.
Today's Game Notes
|SAN JOSE, CA - MARCH 16: Dwayne Roloson #35 of the Edmonton Oilers makes the stop during the shootout against Joe Pavelski #8 of the San Jose Sharks during a NHL game on March 16, 2008 at HP Pavilion at San Jose in San Jose, California. (Photo by Don Smith/NHLI via Getty Images)
by Nick Conrad | edmontonoilers.com
|THE ESSENTIALS FOR TONIGHT
It took 12 seconds and one player to put the game effectively out of reach for the Oilers Wednesday night at Rexall Place.
Despite a good effort from the Oilers and a near comeback, the two quick goals from Vancouver’s Steve Bernier were the difference.
It doesn’t get any easier for the Edmonton Oilers (19-17-3) tonight as they face the best team in the NHL in the San Jose Sharks (29-5-5).
The Sharks have been slumping—for them—lately going 2-1-2 in their last five games. San Jose is coming off only their fifth regulation loss of the season, a 5-2 defeat at the hands of the Calgary Flames on Tuesday night.
Despite San Jose’s dominance this season, Edmonton managed to spoil the Sharks’ party in the teams’ only meeting this season. The Oilers are one of only two teams to beat the Sharks in their own building this season—a victory that ended San Jose’s nine-game win streak.
Eight of San Jose’s 10 losses this season—including all five regulation losses—have come on the road.
The Oilers are 4-2 in their last six games at Rexall Place. They’ll next take on the St. Louis Blues on Dec. 11 in their final match of a five-game homestand.
Edmonton will then hit the road for a three-game road trip.
Just The Facts...
OILERS TO WATCH:
The Oilers will need top line production against the Sharks and Shawn Horcoff
will need to lead the way. He had an assist on Wednesday against the Canucks and has five points in his last five games...Erik Cole continues to improve and has been rewarded for his hard work lately. He’s got three goals in his last four games.
SHARKS TO WATCH:
Joe Thornton leads the Sharks with 46 points and is a staggering +19. He’s got seven points in his last five games but was held pointless in his last game and hasn’t scored in his last four agaisnt Edmonton..Sophomore Ryan Clowe is on a two-game goal-scoring streak and has 17 on the season. He’s got four assists in six career games vs. the Oilers.
Edmonton— Ales Hemsky
(mild concussion) is out; Steve MacIntyre
(orbital bone) is doubtful; Fernando Pisani (ankle) is out. San Jose—Jeremy Roenick (shoulder) is out; Torrey Mitchell (fractured leg) is out.
The loss vs Vancouver (Jan. 7) ended the Oilers two-game winning streak (2-0-0; Jan. 3-5). The streak was tied for the longest of the season at Rexall Place. It was the third time this season that the Oilers won two consecutive games on home ice (2-0-0, Oct. 12-18, Dec. 22-28 and Jan. 3-5)…Edmonton is 23-9-7-0 versus the Sharks at Rexall Place and 39-25-12-2 all-time against the Sharks…The Oilers took the last season’s series with a 3-1 record vs. the Sharks…After playing an NHL leading 18 road games in their first 26 games of the season the Oilers will play 19 of 24 games between Dec. 11 and Feb. 3 at Rexall Place.
Andrew Cogliano selected for NHL Youngstars game
Edmonton Oilers forward Andrew Cogliano is one of 10 players named today to the NHL Sophomores roster for the NHL YoungStars Game to be played at the Bell Centre in Montreal on January 24 as part of the NHL All-Star Weekend. ...more
The Other Side - news from sjsharks.com
- Behind the scenes with Jay Woodcroft - When Todd McLellan created his coaching staff upon his arrival in Silicon Valley, he brought one constant with him from Detroit. He hired his old video coach Jay Woodcroft and made him an assistant coach. ...more
- Hockey Hot Stove - Episode 5 - Sharks Radio's Dan Rusanowsky and Jamie Baker talk about Mats Sundin, his first game with his new team the Vancouver Canucks and the current state of Sharks hockey. NHL Weekly Videos: Top 10 Goals | Top 10 Saves | ...more
- Thornton & Boyle ready for Montreal - Sharks defenseman Dan Boyle will be skating in his first NHL All-Star game this month in Montreal while Sharks center Joe Thornton will be making his sixth appearance at the mid-season classic. ...more
Odds and Ends
- Hemky placed on IR; MacIntyre activated - General Manager Steve Tambellini announced today the Edmonton Oilers have placed forward Ales Hemsky on the NHL Injured Reserve List and activated forward Steve MacIntyre from the IRL. ...more
- Ask an Oiler: Dwayne Roloson - Next Thursday, our guest on Ask an Oiler will be goaltender Dwayne Roloson. Follow the link to get your questions in to the netminder early and often. ...more
- Visnovsky emerging from radar blackout - Lubomir Visnovsky wasn't immediately delighted with the trade that sent him from Los Angeles to Edmonton. But the defenceman no longer has a complaint. Follow the link for a feature on the Oilers blueliner. ...more
- This or That? with Liam Reddox - Life can be filled with tough decisions, but we spared rookie Liam Reddox by firing a few easy one-timers his way. Click to check out his selections in a variety of categories, including cheeses, precipitation, and late night talk shows. ...more
From the Wire (AP)
Little has gone wrong for the San Jose Sharks through the first half of the season. That is until their most recent string of road games.
The Western Conference-leading Sharks look to avoid a third straight loss away from home when they continue their tour through western Canada on Friday night against the Edmonton Oilers.
At 19-0-2, San Jose owns the NHL's best home record, and also has played well on the road, going 10-5-3, but has struggled of late away from HP Pavilion.
The Sharks, who lead the West with 63 points, lost 5-2 at Calgary on Tuesday for their second straight road loss while falling to 1-2-3 away from home since winning five in a row there.
"We need to challenge ourselves on the road," All-Star defenseman Dan Boyle told the Sharks' official Web site.
San Jose, which has not lost consecutive games in regulation this season, concludes its swing through western Canada on Saturday at Vancouver.
Mike Grier scored and Ryane Clowe posted his 17th goal and second in as many games in the second period against Calgary. Evgeni Nabokov was pulled after allowing four goals on 18 shots for the Sharks, who trailed 3-0 after one period.
"We're all here together and I'll take full responsibility," said Nabokov, who is 21-4-4 with a 2.55 goals-against average this season and has lost three in a row versus Edmonton. "I should have given them a chance to keep it close and it wasn't close."
The Sharks have been outscored 20-10 over their last six road contests.
"We look at how we play and if we do what we say before the game, we will be fine," Sharks defenseman Christian Ehrhoff said. "The last couple of road games, we haven't accomplished what we want."
Joe Thornton had his six-game scoring streak snapped Tuesday. The All-Star forward and team leading scorer has gone without a point in four straight games versus Edmonton, including the Sharks' 3-2 overtime home loss to the Oilers on Dec. 6 in the teams' only previous meeting this season.
The Oilers (19-17-3) fell to 2-1 on their five-game homestand with a 4-2 loss to Vancouver on Wednesday. Robert Nilsson and Erik Cole each scored for Edmonton, which has lost three of five since winning three in a row.
Dwayne Roloson made 18 saves and allowed three second-period goals for the Oilers while falling to 11-7-3 with a 2.62 GAA on the season.
"It was tough to have a couple little breakdowns get you bang, bang like that," Edmonton's All-Star defenseman Sheldon Souray said. "That definitely changed the momentum."
Dustin Penner had a goal with an assist against the Sharks last month for his most recent multi-point contest. Roloson, meanwhile, made 41 saves in that contest and is 11-9-0 with three ties and a 2.93 GAA in his career versus San Jose.
The Oilers have won the last three meetings between the teams, all coming in San Jose. The Sharks are 2-0-1 since losing three in a row at Edmonton.