The red-hot Oilers are in Los Angeles tonight for a massive Pacific Division tilt with the Kings. In their last ten games, the teams have a combined record of 16-2-2 and are currently separated by a single point in the standings. With five games left in the season, the top three spots in the division are all still up for grabs, making tonight’s game extremely important in the Western Conference playoff picture. Heading into the night, the Oilers are slight favorites to win the game and the over/under is set at 6.5.
With Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl leading the way on 11 and 12 game point streaks, the Edmonton Oilers are one of the hottest teams in the NHL right now. In their last 13, they’ve picked up 23 points and are now just a single point behind the Kings in the Pacific Division race. With the game tonight, they have an opportunity to move past Los Angeles and possibly come within two points of the Vegas Golden Knights. Even if they can’t catch Vegas, finishing ahead of Los Angeles will give Edmonton home-ice advantage in the first round, which will be key heading into the postseason.
Also, with three points in tonight’s game, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins will reach the 100-point mark for the first time in his career. Over his first eleven seasons, his career high was 69 points.
The Oilers may be a formidable opponent right now, but the Kings aren’t exactly cold either. In their last sixteen games, Los Angeles holds a record of 12-2-2. The team may not have the dominant superstars that Edmonton does, but they do bring a very balanced attack along with a very good defensive structure. They’ve also recently been reaping the rewards of trading for Joonas Korpisalo at the deadline. Goaltending had been a bit of an issue for the team this season, but Korpisalo has allowed two goals or fewer in his first eight starts with Los Angeles. If he can continue to shut the door like that, the Kings will be tough to beat.
With so much on the line, this game is tonight’s must-watch matchup. Even if nothing changes in the standings in these last five games, it’ll be a preview for what should be another great first round matchup in the NHL playoffs. If we had to take a winner, we’d take the Oilers tonight. The offence may be too hot at the moment for Los Angeles to keep up.
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