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Oilers at Blackhawks preview

Edmonton out to end losing streak; backup Forsberg starts for Chicago @NHLdotcom

OILERS (1-4-0) at BLACKHAWKS (4-2-1)

8:30 p.m. ET; WGN, SN1, NHL.TV


The Game

The Edmonton Oilers begin a three-game road trip against the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center on Thursday looking to end a four-game losing streak. Oilers forward Leon Draisaitl took part in the morning skate but will not play, remaining out with an eye injury.

Backup goalie Anton Forsberg will start for Chicago, which will try to avoid back-to-back losses for the first time this season. The Blackhawks lost 5-2 at the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday.

Cam Talbot will make his fifth start in six games for Edmonton.


Players to watch

Oilers captain Connor McDavid is on a three-game point streak (three assists). However, McDavid has not scored a goal since he had a hat trick against the Calgary Flames in the season opener on Oct. 4.

Patrick Kane is on a three-game point streak (three assists). Kane has nine points (two goals, seven assists), this season and is tied for the team lead with Ryan Hartman (three goals, six assists).


They said it

"This is always a tough building to play in, regardless of what your record is or what type of start you've had. I think our group will be excited about playing here. The crowd is always energized, their team always plays well here so it's a good opportunity for us to get going in the right direction and do things right for 60 minutes." -- Oilers coach Todd McLellan on playing in Chicago

"You can look at the first couple of games of the season and say that was our strong point, was our start. Just maybe get that excitement level back and make sure we're ready to go right from the first puck drop. It obviously helps when you score early on, but I think the biggest thing is creating momentum, get out there, get yourself in the game, whether it's a hit, shot on net, whatever it is, control the puck a little bit and get some confidence going forward." -- Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane on getting off to a better start after going down 4-0 against the St. Louis Blues on Wednesday

Oilers projected lineup

Patrick Maroon -- Connor McDavid -- Kailer Yamamoto

Milan Lucic -- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins -- Ryan Strome

Jussi Jokinen -- Brad Malone -- Zack Kassian

Iiro Pakarinen -- Mark Letestu -- Anton Slepyshev

Oscar Klefbom -- Adam Larsson

Darnell Nurse -- Kris Russell

Yohann Auvitu -- Eric Gryba

Cam Talbot

Laurent Brossoit

Scratched: Matt Benning, Jujhar Khaira

Injured: Drake Caggiula (undisclosed), Leon Draisaitl (eye), Andrej Sekera (knee)


Blackhawks projected lineup

Brandon Saad -- Jonathan Toews -- Richard Panik

Ryan Hartman -- Nick Schmaltz -- Patrick Kane

Patrick Sharp -- Artem Anisimov -- Alex DeBrincat

Lance Bouma -- Tanner Kero -- John Hayden

Duncan Keith -- Brent Seabrook

Gustav Forsling -- Jan Rutta

Jordan Oesterle -- Connor Murphy

Anton Forsberg

Corey Crawford

Scratched: Michal Kempny, Tommy Wingels, Cody Franson

Injured: Michal Rozsival (upper body)


Status report

Oesterle will make his debut for the Blackhawks. He spent three seasons with the Oilers before signing a two-year, contract with Chicago on July 1. … Kero returns to the lineup after he was a healthy scratch on Wednesday.

Stat pack

Saad leads the League in game-winning goals (four) and has the game-winner in all four Chicago victories this season. … Kane has 46 points (13 goals, 33 assists) in 34 career games against the Oilers. … Russell has 16 points (three goals, 13 assists) in 38 career games against the Blackhawks.

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