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Game 26 Preview: Avs @ Oilers

The 3-Game roadtrip through Canada begins with a tilt with new Pacific Division doormat, Edmonton. Still loaded with talent up front, but with seemingly no direction or luck, the Oilers are dead last in the West.

Doug Pensinger

Colorado travels to the wintery confines of Edmonton, Alberta for this season's first meeting with an old Northwest Division college lottery buddy.

Oil:  Duuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuude!!! Long time no see!!! Still suck?

Avs: No, you miscreant.  Still racing for the bottom?

Oil: Don't be a drag, man.  We're like totally legit now.  We signed an actual goalie.

Avs: Who, the corpse of Tim Thomas?

Oil: Nah, man.  He chose Florida instead.  We signed Bryzgalov.

Avs: The guy who publicly mocked your whole region while the backup in Anahiem?

Oil: That's our guy!!!

Avs: Didn't he get concussed the other night?

Oil: What's a concussion?  Is that what they're gonna call the foods stands at our bitchin' new arena?  It's named after some Roger dude.  I think it's Roger Gretzky.

Avs: Did you sniff paint as a kid?

Oil: Seriously brah, you gonna hang with use for the yearly envelope opening?  I figure we got two of the top 3 on lock, right?  Howsabout this time you let us get a defenseman.  I heard they help alot.

Avs:  You drafted Darnell Nurse last season, you cretin.

Oil: Ohhhh yeah.  Totally forgot about him.  He's gonna anchor our top pair with Justin Schultz!

Avs: About that...

Oil: Hey! Hey! We got the best guy in a trade with the Blues.  Name's David Perron.  I bet he's glad to get out of St. Louis, right?

Avs: Sure he is.  Now he's the best player on the team.

Oil: Huh?

Avs: Hey, you guys have to be happy with Nail Yakupov's play this season though, right?  Probably under-valued in the defensive zone though.

Oil: He should tots win the Selke.

Avs: You're sucking the fun out of this...

Oil: Man, we've won 9 games this year.  Ten more and we'll have matched next season.  And we've only played 29 games!

Avs: We've already eclipsed last year's 16 wins and we've only played 25.

Oil: What's eclipsed mean?  Is it like slew-footing?  Cuz I heard you have some goons on your team this year.  Some Scottish guy?

Avs: No. Just... no. By the way, how's the new coach working out?

Oil: He might hate Russians.

Avs: Yikes!

Here are your projected starting lineups:


Taylor Hall
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins
Jordan Eberle
Nail Yakupov
Mark Arcobello
David Perron
Ryan Jones
Sam Gagner
Ales Hemsky
Ryan Smyth
Anton Ladner
Jesse Joensuu
Andrew Ference Jeff Petry
Nick Schultz Anton Belov
Martin Marincin/Corry Potter Justin Schultz
(Starter) Devan Dubnyk (3.38 GAA, .889 SV%)
(Backup) Jason Labarbera (3.69 GAA, .858 SV%)

Out: Ilya Bryzgalov (concussion/whiplash), Boyd Gordon (shoulder), Philip Larsen (back)

GOOD GUYS (tots guesses)

Max Talbot
Matt Duchene Ryan O'Reilly
Jamie McGinn Paul Stastny P.A. Parenteau
Gabriel Landeskog
Nathan MacKinnon
John Mitchell
Patrick Bordeleau Marc-Andre Cliche Cody McLeod
Jan Hejda Erik Johnson
Cory Sarich
Nick Holden
Andre Benoit
Tyson Barrie Nate Guenin
(Starter) Semyon Varlamov (2.13 GAA, .933 SV%)
(Backup) J.S. Giguere (1.62 GAA, .949 SV%)

Out: Brad Malone (healthy), Nick Holden (healthy), Cory Sarich (maintenance), Alex Tanguay (knee), Ryan Wilson (back)

Check out Copper and Bluee for more coverage.

Puck drops 7:30pm MT / 9:30pm ET