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game preview

Canucks at Oilers preview

Edmonton goes for seventh win in 11 games; Vancouver playing finale of road trip

by Derek Van Diest / Independent Correspondent

CANUCKS (12-10-4) at OILERS (16-8-3)

10 p.m. ET; CBC, SN360, SNE, SNO, SNP, NHL.TV 


The Game

The Vancouver Canucks will end a season-long, six-game road trip when they visit the Edmonton Oilers at Rogers Place on Saturday, in the first game of a home-and-home series.

Goalie Jacob Markstrom will start for Vancouver, which has lost two straight and is 3-7-2 in its past 12 games.

Mike Smith will start for Edmonton, which is 6-3-1 in its past 10 games and is playing its first game at home after a five-game road trip (3-2-0).  

Edmonton is in first in the Pacific Division, one point ahead of the Arizona Coyotes and seven ahead of Vancouver, which is in fifth place. 


Players to watch

Canucks center Elias Pettersson has six points (three goals, three assists) in his past four games. He leads Vancouver with 31 points (11 goals, 20 assists) in 26 games. 

Oilers center Connor McDavid had an 11-game point streak (12 goals, 12 assists) end in a 4-1 loss at the Colorado Avalanche on Wednesday. He is second in NHL scoring with 47 points (18 goals, 29 assists), one point behind teammate Leon Draisaitl (48 points; 16 goals, 32 assists).


They said it

"This is a big game. It's an easy game for both teams to get up for. We look forward to this divisional matchup. I think both teams are going to be itching to play this game tonight." -- Canucks forward J.T. Miller 

"He's a guy that has a great shot and he gets available to shoot. That said, you have to play him pretty tight, but elite players, they find open ice."-- Oilers defenseman Darnell Nurse on Canucks center Elias Pettersson 


Canucks projected lineup 

J.T. Miller -- Bo Horvat -- Nikolay Goldobin

Jake Virtanen -- Elias Pettersson -- Brock Boeser

Tanner Pearson -- Adam Gaudette -- Josh Leivo

Tim Schaller -- Tyler Graovac -- Zack MacEwen

Alexander Edler -- Christopher Tanev

Quinn Hughes -- Tyler Myers

Jordie Benn -- Troy Stecher

Jacob Markstrom

Thatcher Demko

Scratched: Oscar Fantenberg, Loui Eriksson

Injured: Antoine Roussel (knee), Tyler Motte (upper body), Micheal Ferland (concussion), Brandon Sutter (groin), Jay Beagle (lower body)


Oilers projected lineup

Leon Draisaitl -- Connor McDavid -- Zack Kassian

Alex Chiasson - Sam Gagner -- James Neal

Jujhar Khaira -- Riley Sheahan -- Josh Archibald

Markus Granlund -- Gaetan Haas - Patrick Russell

Darnell Nurse -- Ethan Bear

Oscar Klefbom -- Caleb Jones

Kris Russell -- Adam Larsson

Mike Smith

Mikko Koskinen

Scratched: Matt Benning, Brandon Manning, Joakim Nygard

Injured: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (hand)


Status report

Beagle has missed the past three games and is not expected to play. … Benn will play in his 500th NHL game. ... Chiasson will play after leaving the game Wednesday with a jaw injury. … Granlund, who signed a one-year contract on July 1, will play his first game for Edmonton against Vancouver, where he played the previous four seasons. 


Stat pack

Miller has six points (four goals, two assists) in a four-game point streak. … Hughes has nine assists in his past six games. … Draisaitl has 32 points (10 goals, 22 assists) in his past 17 games.

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