Based on the team’s next opponent, the same can be said for Patrick Maroon, too.
The Oilers go for their fourth consecutive home win over the red-hot Boston Bruins on Tuesday night at Rogers Place.
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McDavid posted his second hat trick this month and third of the season in a 4-2 win over the Colorado Avalanche on Sunday that snapped Edmonton’s season-high six-game losing streak. Since Feb. 1, the reigning Hart Trophy winner has 11 goals and 15 points in nine games, and is among the league leaders with 69 points.
Imagine what McDavid could do if completely healthy.
“There are always things that go on with illnesses and stuff like that and Connor isn’t 100 percent right now. He’s got things going on, and to put that type of performance on the ice is a real strong one,” Oilers coach Todd McLellan told the team’s official website.
McDavid hasn’t scored in three career matchups with Boston but has seven assists. The 21-year-old picked up two assists in a 4-2 win over the Bruins on Nov. 26.
Maroon also scored, giving him six goals in his last three games against Boston. The rugged winger, who has spent his entire seven-year career with Western Conference teams, has seven goals and two assists in nine games versus the Bruins.
Maroon has 14 goals to rank fourth on the team behind McDavid (26), Leon Draisaitl (17) and injured Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (16). However, Maroon has one goal in his last 11 games.
The Oilers (24-30-4) are tied with the Vancouver Canucks for 13th in the West and 19 points out of the final playoff spot with 23 games to go.
“We know where we are in the standings. … Going home now to play against one of, if not the top team in the league, will be a tough task for us,” McLellan said.
The Oilers registered three power-play goals in a 7-4 home win over Boston last March 16. But what a difference a season makes as Edmonton is 4 of 45 with the man advantage in its last 17 home games. After potting 27 power-play goals at home in 2016-17, the Oilers have 12.
Cam Talbot (20-22-2, 3.12 goals-against average, .902 save percentage, two shutouts) should be in goal for Edmonton. Talbot has split his last two starts, but stopped 55 of 58 shots during that span. He also has won four of his last six starts at home.
After being routed by the Canucks on Saturday to open a five-game road trip, Boston (36-13-8) rebounded with a 2-1 overtime win over the Calgary Flames on Monday. Brad Marchand notched the game-winner and Tuukka Rask stopped 28 shots.
The Bruins are one point behind the Tampa Bay Lightning for the top spot in the East with two games in hand.
Boston has been on a remarkable tear for more than three months. Going back to Nov. 16, the Bruins are 30-6-4 and have yet to lose consecutive games in regulation.
“I think it starts at the top with leadership, and just having that constant belief we can do it, we can get the job done regardless of who we’re playing against,” center Riley Nash told the league’s official website.
Patrice Bergeron is the team’s top scorer during that stretch with 23 goals and 41 points. The 14-year veteran leads the team with 27 goals, five short of matching a career high.
Marchand collected 14 goals and 26 assists during the hot stretch, and is the team’s top scorer with 55 points in 44 games.
Marchand has five goals and five assists in 11 career games. David Pastrnak, who opened the scoring Monday, has three goals in four matchups with Edmonton.
The Bruins’ official website reported that Anton Khudobin (12-3-4, 2.34 GAA, .923 save percentage, one shutout) is expected to start over Rask. The native of Russia is 8-1-2 and has allowed only 24 goals in 13 road games, including 11 starts. He is 1-1-0 with 3.12 GAA and .899 save percentage in three career games (two starts) in Edmonton.
Boston is 5-3-2 on the back end of games on consecutive nights.