Edmonton Oilers Look to Keep Rolling Against Sabres

The Edmonton Oilers are 2-0 to start the season for the first time since 2010. As they look to keep their streak alive, they will have to keep the ball rolling against Buffalo Sunday.

Though the Sabres are without two of their best forwards in Jack Eichel and Evander Kane, this won’t be an easy win for the Oilers. The team got off to a slow start against the Flames, and there are plenty of areas where they need to improve in.

Projected Lines

Here are the expected lines for Sunday’s matchup.

Forwards:

Milan Lucic-Connor McDavid-Jordan Eberle

Benoit Pouliot-Ryan Nugent-Hopkins-Zack Kassian

Patrick Maroon-Leon Draisaitl-Jesse Puljujarvi

Tyler Pitlick-Mark Letestu-Anton Lander

Extra: Anton Slepyshev, Injured: Drake Caggiula (hip)

Defense:

Oscar Klefbom-Adam Larsson

Andrej Sekera-Kris Russell

Darnell Nurse-Eric Gryba

Extra: Matthew Benning, Injured: Brandon Davidson

Between Two Posts

Cam Talbot will get his third straight start, with Jonas Gustavsson backing up. Either Robin Lehner or Anders Nilsson will start for the Sabres.

Keys to the Game

The Oilers need to remain solid on the power play but must capitalise on all of their opportunities. They seemed to do that Friday, going 2-for-4 on the man advantage and taking the time to make plays. Edmonton has 30 percent success on the power play to start the season. However, they’ve only played Calgary so far in two games, so the full potential of the 5-on-4 unit is unknown so far.

If the Oilers want to defeat the Sabres, they also must stay aware on the backcheck and strengthen when it comes to defence. They have been allowing many shots and goals per game so far, and need to be more physical and aggressive on defence.]

Lastly, the team must get off to a strong start and maintain consistency and momentum. At times, it looks like the Oilers slowed down, and need to keep up the hard work.

Notes and Facts to Know

Upcoming Schedule

11/3
11/5
11/6
11/8
11/15

– Head coach Todd McLellan said the forward lines are subject to change, and that Larsson is fine, despite not skating Saturday.

– McDavid is the first teenager in NHL history to have back-to-back three-point games to start the season. He’s also the first Oiler to score at least six points in his first two games of the season since Wayne Gretzky in 1987-88.

– The Oilers defensive corps have produced eight points in their first two games, and are becoming a huge part of the offensive rush. This is a great sign.

Puck drops at 7 p.m. MT at Roger’s Place, and the game will be broadcasted on the NHL Network.

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