With no wins in their last three games, the Edmonton Oilers are expected to have some new line combinations for Saturday’s contest against the New York Islanders.
The Oilers practiced on Friday with these combos:
Pouliot-RNH-Puljujarvi, Maroon-McDavid-Eberle, Lucic-Draisaitl-Kassian, Lander-Letestu-Pitlick/Slepyshev
— Bob Stauffer (@Bob_Stauffer) November 4, 2016
“One night, one line is clicking and the two others aren’t. Perhaps the most consistent threesome has been our fourth line of Pitlick, Lander, and Letestu. They seem to give us a good game every night,” says head coach Todd McLellan. “Connor’s line is in on a lot of offensive chances but they’ve been giving up a lot. The other two lines I think there’s an ability to find a way to score a little more and take some pressure off our goaltender and the back end.”
Patrick Maroon will likely be back on a line with Connor McDavid for the first time since late last season. “We just found chemistry right away,” Maroon recalls. “For me to have success on that line, I have to be strong in the defensive zone. I have to be strong on the boards, making sure I break out clean, making sure I get Connor the puck in the middle. I have to go straight to the net, create havoc in front of the net, get my big body in there.”
With the Oilers playing the Islanders on Saturday and the Red Wings on Sunday, Jonas Gustavsson will get his first start of the season in goal in one of those games.
Catch the Oilers and Islanders on 630 CHED at 5pm Saturday. (jrw)