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Oilers meet Predators on PPV

by Staff Writer / Edmonton Oilers

After splitting their first two games of this three-game road trip, the Edmonton Oilers wrap things up tonight against one of the top teams in the Western Conference - the Nashville Predators.

Edmonton had a three-game winning streak snapped on Sunday night with a loss to Chicago but remain tied for top spot in the Northwest Division with the Minnesota Wild.

Nashville looked to be in trouble when goaltender Tomas Vokoun went down with an injury on November 23 but backup Chris Mason was able to come in and hold the fort as the Preds rattled off three more wins in a row.

However, the wheels are starting to come off a little bit after they followed that four-game win streak with an overtime loss to Chicago. Nashville only has one win in its last five outings and are returning home after a 1-3-0 Pacific Division road trip.

Tonight's game will be available on pay-per-view via Shaw Digital Cable, Star Choice and Bell Expressvu. If you don't have any of those three service providers you can still catch tonight's game at one of four participating Cineplex Odeon, Galaxy or Silver City theatres.

OILERS TO WATCH: Last game, the Oilers were 10-for-10 on the penalty kill thanks in large part to the PK efforts of
Shawn Horcoff and Toby Petersen. Petersen and Horcoff were often paired together as the top penalty kill forward unit and had some success. Petersen was even able to use his speed to create some scoring chances. Marty Reasoner and Jarret Stoll were also solid on the penalty kill Sunday.

PREDATORS TO WATCH: With all the offensive firepower Nashville has up front, it may be surprising to note that the team's leading goal scorer is Lloydminster's Scott Hartnell. Through 29 games, Hartnell has scored 11 times... The Preds have a balanced attack with 10 players with 16 or more points: In order Steve Sullivan, Paul Kariya, Martin Erat, David Legwand, Hartnell, Kimmo Timonen, J.P. Dumont, Shea Weber, Jason Arnott and Marek Zidlicky. By contrast, the Oilers have only four... That doesn't even count right wing Alexander Radulov who has eight goals and 10 points in 16 games.

ROSTER UPDATES: Edmonton - Ethan Moreau (shoulder) is out, Ryan Smyth (thumb) is out, Ales Hemsky (shoulder) is out. Nashville - Tomas Vokoun (thumb) is out, Jason Arnott (knee) is out, David Legwant (hand) is questionable, Scottie Upshall (groin) is questionable, Steve Sullivan (groin) is doubtful.

FAST FACTS: Nashville is only 1-5-1 when trailing after one period and 0-4-0 when trailing after two but they do have a winning record at 6-5-2 when the opponent scores first... Edmonton's penalty kill continues to roll after going 10-for-10 against Chicago on Sunday. It's ranked first in the league both overall and on the road. Their penalty kill percentage is 90.7% and 94.5% away from Rexall Place. The Oilers have killed off 23 straight power plays and have only allowed one power play goal through the entire month of December... The only time the Oilers ever led the league in penalty killing was 1980-81 when they were 81.9%.
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