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|Los Angeles Kings||+1.5
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The Edmonton Oilers will take on the Los Angeles Kings in Game Three of the First Round of the playoffs. The Kings won Game One 4-3 behind a one-goal, two-assist game by Trevor Moore and a one-goal, one-assist game by Phillip Danault. The Oilers evened it up in Game Two and crushed the Lakers 6-0 behind Evander Kane’s two goals and one assist and Mike Smith’s 30 saves.
The Edmonton Oilers had a mediocre first half of the season but an excellent second half. They had a few long winning streaks and propelled themselves into the playoffs.
The Oilers have two of the best players in the league in Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. McDavid led the NHL in points with 123 and had 44 goals. McDavid has appeared in many All-Star games and is regarded as a top player in the league. Draisaitl is the second-best goal-scorer in the NHL. He had 55 goals during the season and also had 55 assists.
The Oilers do not have an ideal goaltending situation. Mikko Koskinen and Mike Smith started the majority of the Oilers’ games this season. Neither of them are great, and the Oilers could benefit from better goaltenders. Mike Smith has started both playoff games in net. He struggled in Game One and gave up four goals but rebounded in Game Two with a shutout. Smith needs to solidify himself as the starter for the Oilers and play like a top netminder in these playoffs.
The Los Angeles Kings had a horrible start to the season but heated up as it went along. They lost their final regular season game but won the five before that.
The Kings are not a star-studded team. However, they have some efficient players and a top defense that only gives up 2.79 goals per game. Anze Kopitar is the leader of this team. He is 34-years-old but can still set up his teammates. He is complemented well by Adrian Kempe. Kempe is the Kings’ leading goal-scorer with 35 goals. Overall, the Kings’ defense is better than their offense and will need to step up to win this series.
The Kings have a goaltending duo of Jonathan Quick and Cal Peterson. Neither of them are great, but Quick has started both games in this series. Petersen will probably get the Game Three start, as Quick gave up six goals in the last game.
The Kings will bounce back this game with the help of their home crowd. The game will be close, but Los Angeles will come away with it.
|Edmonton Oilers||Head-to-Head||Los Angeles Kings|
|Jay Woodcroft||Head Coach||Todd McLellan|
|49-27-6 (2nd in Pacific Division)||Standing||44-27-11 (3rd in Pacific Division)|
|Leaders (Regular Season)|
|Connor McDavid (123)||Points||Anze Kopitar (67)|
|Leon Draisaitl (55)||Goals||Adrian Kempe (35)|
|Connor McDavid (79)||Assists||Anze Kopitar (48)|
|Leon Draisaitl (28)||+/-||Matt Roy (23)|
|Connor McDavid (3.93)||Shots (Per Game)||Viktor Arvidsson (3.44)|
The Edmonton Oilers are the better of these two teams most days of the week. However, they will have a tough battle in this game as they go to Los Angeles. With that being said, the Oilers can win if they draw penalties and take many shots.
The Oilers have had on eight power-plays in these first two games. They have been incredibly efficient on those four power-plays and scored four times. Edmonton must keep drawing penalties and scoring with a man advantage. The Oilers can put away the Kings with power-play goals.
The Oilers are a very offensively skilled team that averaged 34 shots a game during the season. They need to keep on shooting as much as they can. The Kings do not have solid goaltenders, so Edmonton needs to fire at will.
The Kings are the underdogs, but they can come away victorious if they harness the home crowd’s energy and stop Connor McDavid.
The Kings will be playing their first game of the series at home and need to use the crowd to their advantage. Interestingly, the Kings performed better on the road this season, but they can turn the tables in the playoffs. They can and have to use the home crowd to push them to victory.
Connor McDavid was the Oilers’ points leader this season and leads the Oilers in playoff points with four. The Kings’ defensemen have to slow him down as much as possible; they have to stop him from taking shots and cut off his passing lanes.
Connor McDavid has had an efficient two playoff games. He had one goal and one assist in the Oilers’ Game One loss and two assists in the Oilers’ Game Two win.
McDavid can pass and score and needs to keep tearing up the Kings’ offense in Game Three.
This is an unexpected pick. Phillip Danault only has one goal and one assist through two games, but he also has a +/- of three and is averaging over 21 minutes on the ice. Danault is making his team better, and his stats show that.
Danault does not need to change his game in Game Three. He just needs to look for his opportunities and always try to make his team better.
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|Edmonton Oilers vs Los Angeles Kings Information|
|What||Edmonton Oilers vs Los Angeles Kings|
|Where||crypto.com Arena, Los Angeles, California|
|When||Friday, May 6, 10:00 PM EST|
|How to Watch||TBS|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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