Edmonton Oilers vs. New Jersey Devils. Three Keys to Victory
We can’t start talking about this game without talking about it: The Devils are currently with 12 straight wins, and the Edmonton Oilers are included on this list, when the team was winning 3-2 until suffering two goals on 7 seconds (!!!) in the end of the third period, and consequently losing 4-3 at home.
And that’s how the Devils are playing right now. Even a short amount of time can change the outcome of the match, and it’s essential for the Edmonton Oilers to play their best for the 60 minutes tonight at the Prudential Center in New Jersey, to end up this sequence and keep their road trip with another win.
New Jersey Devils
Monday, November 21st
5:00 pm MT (9 PM BRT)
But how the Edmonton Oilers can beat a team who has 15 wins on 18 games and simply has 12 straight wins. Let’s find out below:1. The Defense Has to Be at Their Best
Tonight the Devils enter the ice searching for their 13th straight win, what would tie a franchise record that exists since 2001, when they got to the Stanley Cup Finals, losing to the Avalanche on 7 games.
The Devils right now are for sure one of the most dangerous team on the offensive side. As five of those 12 wins have been by more than three goals, they have the highest shots on goal differential of the NHL history so far, with 12.7 and outscored their opponents on the last 12 games by 51-22.
If that isn’t necessary yet, they have a 8-0-0 record against Western Conference teams, and 7-0-0 against Canadian teams. The New Jersey Devils are second in the NHL with shots per game (36.9) and, even if they don’t have players fighting for the Art Ross Trophy or for the Maurice Richard, they have a powerful offensive zone, led by Jesper Bratt, Jack Hughes and Nico Hirshier. But like their last game against the Senators, only Hirshier scored points with an assist, but the team still beat Ottawa 5-1.
The Oilers will need once again the Stuart Skinner plays his best, and the defensive lines to prove that they can face such a good team as the Devils. Every defenseman still has a lot of room to improve on the team, since the first line with Darnell Nurse and Cody Ceci, Kulak and Bouchard on the middle line and, for sure, Tyson Barrie and Ryan Murray.2. The Edmonton Oilers Offense Has to Deliver
With Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Zach Hyman and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, the Edmonton Oilers have one of the best offensive sides of the NHL. But they will face one of the best defensive side of the NHL. The Devils have the lowest NHL stat on Shots Against Per Game (24.7) and their goalie Vitek Vanecek, besides having the third best GAA of the league (2.15) have won eight straight games, and wants to be only the second Devils’ goalie to win 9 straight games, with Martin Brodeur being the only one so far.
This 12-game (!!!) win streak isn’t a fluke like Anaheim’s win streak last year or any other weird one the past few years, and this is a big reason why pic.twitter.com/bJ48NNhBVB
— Matt_NJD (@matt_NJD) November 19, 2022
The Edmonton Oilers need that Connor McDavid keeps his lead on points of the NHL, which he currently holds with 34 on 18 GP. And if he doesn’t, that the second place gets it, as Leon Draisaitl has 30 points on the same 18 GP. Besides them, Zach Hyman and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins have to continue to play great on the Evander Kane absence, as they both have more than 1 point per game on average. On the bottom 6, the third line with Klim Kostin, Ryan McLeod and Jesse Puljujarvi looks to be a great combination, and will for sure be important to the Oilers.
With the Devils having 6 comeback wins and 3 OT wins only on this 12-game sequence, every goal can decide the match in favour of any of the two teams.3. Knows How to Play Outside the 5-on-5
With Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl on the Power Play, and Tyson Barrie helping a lot on this side, the Oilers have the 2nd best Power Play percentage of the league with 31.8% (only losing to the 36.5% of the Colorado Avalanche) the team has to use every chance they got tonight.
The Devils are the 8th best on the Penalty Kill (81.4%) but only the 20th on the Power Play (20.3%), so the team still has to play better on the Penalty Kill, which has been a problem for the Oilers this season. Against a great team who isn’t exceptional on the PP, can be a great match to jay Woodcroft improve the PK too, who currently is only the 28th of the NHL, with 73%.