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GAME DAY: Jets, Oilers square off in Alberta capital

8:00pm CT - TV: TSN3; Radio: TSN 1290

by Mitchell Clinton @MitchellClinton / WinnipegJets.com

Video: PREGAME | Jets @ Oilers

WINNIPEG - Paul Maurice called the first week of Winnipeg Jets training camp "a grind," and Chase De Leo wouldn't have it any other way.

De Leo, the team's fourth round pick in 2014, says that type of camp suits him.

"I look forward to the grind. I think that's where I can stand out and where I benefit," said De Leo. "I think that's why everyone put the work in this summer so when they do get here, as a grinder, you're ready for it. This time around, I know what to expect."

The 21-year-old forward will see his second game of preseason action tonight when the Jets take on the Edmonton Oilers, who are undefeated in four exhibition games.

Video: PREGAME | Paul Maurice

He was also in the line-up on Thursday night, playing 14:19 (including 1:13 on the power play) in a 1-0 loss to the Wild.

That game, and tonight's tilt in Edmonton, are the two games Maurice had circled for the younger players in the system to see a lot of game action. De Leo was one of 12 players in a Jets jersey Thursday night with less than 50 games of NHL experience. Based on the morning skate at Bell MTS Iceplex, youth will be served once again, with 10 players with less than 50 games of experience will take to the ice in Edmonton:

Matthias-Lowry-Copp
Petan-Roslovic-Connor
Lemieux-Sgarbossa-Lipon
De Leo-Spacek-Tanev

Morrissey-Byfuglien
Kulikov-Poolman
Melchiori-Chiarot

Video: PREGAME | Brendan Lemieux

"Tonight is an important night," said Maurice. "Getting into that last line or two, or that last pair of defenceman, this is the night we make those decisions."

One of Edmonton's four wins in the preseason came Wednesday night at Bell MTS Place, when two second period goals 13 seconds apart put the Oilers ahead of the Jets for good, and a Kailer Yamamoto empty netter sealed a 4-1 win.

The Jets (0-2-1 in the preseason) are still in search of their first win, and Maurice believes tonight's game may look different than the loss to the Wild.

"We've got some skaters, we were looking to see how well they do in the grind, and now we have some skaters that should have a little bit more open ice to play with. But so will they," said Maurice. "Edmonton is working on not giving much ice either. They're certainly going to create some with some of the guys, and Connor (McDavid) if he gets in the line-up tonight, that will be another level of speed for our defence."

Regardless of what style the game is, De Leo knows he can only control his play. And after getting his first taste of NHL action during the 2015-16 season, he's prepared to do whatever it takes to get there again.

"It's something that, me personally, I'm used to," said De Leo. I've never just been handed anything or given anything. I've always had to earn everything I've gotten."

- Mitchell Clinton, WinnipegJets.com

Video: PREGAME | Nic Petan

TONIGHT'S LINEUP

Tweet from @WpgJetsPR: Today's training camp groups have been released. Playing Group is on-ice at 10:00 a.m. Non-Playing Group is on-ice at 12:00 p.m. pic.twitter.com/VUJY3riUdn

JETS GAME NOTES

Tonight's Game

The Winnipeg Jets play their fourth game of the preseason tonight in Edmonton against the Oilers...The Jets lost to the Oilers 4-1 at Bell MTS Place on Wednesday in the first half of their preseason home-and-home set...The Jets are coming off being shut out 1-0 by the Minnesota Wild on Thursday...Following tonight's game, the Jets are back in Winnipeg to play the Calgary Flames on Monday and Ottawa Senators on Wednesday...The Jets conclude their 2017 preseason schedule a week from tonight in Calgary.

Against the Oilers

The Jets lost all three games to the Oilers last season, including the 2016 Heritage Classic 3-0 on Oct. 23 at Investors Group Field...The three games were played at three different venues - Investors Group Field, Bell MTS Place and Rogers Place...Winnipeg's last regular season win over the Oilers came on Feb. 13/16 2-1 in a shootout in Edmonton...Four of Winnipeg's last five regular season wins against Edmonton have come in overtime or a shootout...Bryan Little leads the Jets in scoring against the Oilers with 11 points (6G, 5A) in 12 games, while Dustin Byfuglien (2G, 8A) and Blake Wheeler (1G, 9A) have 10 points each.

Looking to Break Out

After finishing seventh in the NHL with 246 goals (an average of three per game), the Jets have scored three goals combined in their first three exhibition games...Winnipeg's three goal scorers this preseason - Patrik Laine, Mathieu Perreault and Nikolaj Ehlers - are not scheduled to be in the lineup.

Act II

Thirteen players scheduled to dress for the Jets tonight played in Wednesday's 1-0 loss to Minnesota...Among those playing in both games are first-round picks Josh Morrissey, Kyle Connor and Jack Roslovic.

Experienced D

The six defencemen scheduled to play for the Jets tonight have a combined 1,548 games of NHL experience...Josh Morrissey played in all 82 games for the Jets last season...The only defenceman dressing for Winnipeg without NHL experience is rookie Tucker Poolman, who is playing in his third preseason game for the Jets.

LAST TIME OUT

ST. PAUL, MN - With more than 10 regulars back home in Winnipeg to give the kids and "bubble" guys at least one more look, the baby Jets had something to prove with the ever-watchful eyes of the coaching and scouting staff looking on, pen in hand.  

For the most part, the Jets gave their opponents a run for their money, but the offence didn't come easy and the Wild escaped with a slim, 1-0 victory...

Read more in Ryan Dittrick's game story >>

 CAMP COVERAGE

JetsTV's Mitchell Clinton reports from Friday's practice, where the Jets had a special guest on hand to help them become more disciplined.

Video: CAMP | Desire to be Disciplined

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