The Edmonton Oilers have lost four in a row and are one point out of dead-last in the Western Conference. They have lost five of the first six games of their nine-game road trip, and have been outshot handily in each of those five losses, while managing to score just 14 goals in this six-game span.
The Nashville Predators have lost three in a row, and is the only team in the West that has managed to accumulate fewer points (seven) than the Oilers (eight) during their last 10 games. The team has slid all the way down to 11th in the West. They rank dead-last in the league in scoring with only 47 goals, but yet they rank among the league’s best in goals allowed with 59.
Something will have to give when these two face off in Nashville tonight. But what, exactly, will that something be?
Edmonton boasts the eighth-best power play percentage in the league (20.8 percent) and the sixth-best penalty kill (85.4 percent), while Nashville ranks 28th (13.7 percent) and 26th (77.2 percent) in those categories, so this would seem to favor the Oilers.
The problem though, is they are only four for their last 29 on the power play and continue to struggle to put shots on net, so all of this might be nothing more than stats.
Injuries continue to thwart both teams’ attempts to salvage their seasons, as Brandon Yip and Hal Gill are out for the Predators, while Shawn Horcoff, Ales Hemsky, Nikolai Khabibulin, Teemu Hartikainen, Mark Fistric and Theo Peckham rank among the wounded for the Oilers.
So with both teams playing poorly, not scoring and dealing with injuries, who on earth is going to lead the charge for either team?
Somehow, one of these teams will stop their losing ways tonight at least for the night. The question is: will it be Edmonton, or will it be Nashville? Stay tuned.