Los Angeles Kings at Edmonton Oilers Tonight: A Must Win In Back-To-Back Nights


Tuesday night the Los Angeles Kings will suit up for the second time in two nights.  After losing to the Vancouver Canucks 2-1 in a shootout on Monday, the Kings will battle the Edmonton Oilers at Rexall Place with the Playoffs on the line.  Puck-drop is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. PST.

The Kings are looking for sleep and most likely running on fumes.  It’s ok, it’s better for the players to get back out on the ice again and shake off the frustrating loss from last night.

“Hollywood’s the city of bright lights and shooting stars; so for Hollywood’s team it’s always a good night to light the lamp.”

Edmonton is coming in off a 4-0 loss to the Calgary Flames.  Thanks for nothing Edmonton.

L.A. could have gotten a little help in the standings had the Oilers won the fierce rivalry that’s known as “The Battle of Alberta”.

In their last two games the Oilers have been outscored 12-2.  So much for a strong finish.

Tonight will be the second game between the Kings and Oilers in the last 5 nights.  L.A. routed Edmonton 8-2 last Thursday at Staples Center.

L.A. needs a similar result.

Don’t expect any changes in the dress-list.  The Kings lineup is expected to be the same as last night:

Los Angeles Kings
Los Angeles Kings /

Los Angeles Kings


Marian Gaborik – Anze Kopitar – Justin Williams

Dwight King – Jeff Carter – Tyler Toffoli

Dustin Brown – Jarret Stoll – Trevor Lewis

Kyle Clifford – Nick Shore – Jordan Nolan


Jake Muzzin – Drew Doughty

Robyn Regehr – Alec Martinez

Brayden McNabb – Matt Greene


Martin Jones

Jonathan Quick

The one change, is actually the biggest.  Tonight may be a good night to give Jonathan Quick a rest.

L.A. has been in playoff mode, or more accurately survival mode for the last 3-4 weeks.  As a result they have played their star starting goaltender a ton.

Quick has started in an astounding 69 games this season.  Quick is 2nd in the NHL in starts, 1 game behind Braden Holtby’s 70.  Prior to that Quick had a short summer break that included wrist-surgery, and a 26-game battle-royal to help the Kings win the 2014 Stanley Cup.

As a team we’re going to need a rested goaltender heading into the playoffs, and heading into an epic game on Thursday against the Calgary Flames.  Thursday’s game will decide the 3rd playoff spot in the Pacific Division.

Besides Rich Hammond the Kings beat writer for the Orange County Register made a good point after the game last night:

Martin Jones is 4-4-2 this season with 3 shutouts.  Jones has a 2.18 goals against average and a .909 save percentage.

Jones has started in 10 games and played in 14.  All season long Jones has played to a level of a 1-B goaltender rather than a backup-#2.  However the Kings play in front of him has been inconsistent.  It’s all or nothing.

If the Kings play well, Jones does well and get the win and a shutout.  If the Kings don’t play well . . . let’s just say it’s not pretty and despite his good play Jones’ number could be a little better.

In 4 games this season L.A. has outscored the Oilers 21-8, going 3-0-1.  If the Kings can’t win now when they need it, they don’t deserve a playoff berth.

Shake off the scoring bug and get back to putting the puck in the net.  Hollywood’s the city of bright lights and shooting stars; so for Hollywood’s team it’s always a good night to light the lamp.

Jeff Carter is currently on a three-game point-streak.  Carter has 2 goals and 5 points in his last 3 games.

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  • Oilers to keep an eye on:

    Nail Yakupov is in his third full season with the Oilers, and the 2012 1st overall pick is looking like a bust.  And that’s being nice about it.

    In 78 games this season Yakupov has 12 goals, 18 assists, 30 points, and a horrid -35 plus/minus.  He also has 5 power-play goals and 1 game-winner.

    So, almost half of his goals have come on the power-play, and for a 1st overall pick he gets a point every other game.  Translation: that’s not good.

    Yakupov’s numbers are terrible this season.  The bad news?  He’s close to career high’s in every category, except for goals and that horrid plus/minus.

    It would be assumed that because of his draft status he is untouchable.  Not true, earlier this season there were rumors the Oilers were trying to trade him away.  One explanation his numbers are bad is that he plays for the Oilers.  That’s a crock – as a first overall pick he should be making the team better, not making up excuses.

    Mar 8, 2015; Raleigh, NC, USA; Edmonton Oilers forward Nail Yakupov (10) skates against the Carolina Hurricanesat PNC Arena. The Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Edmonton Oilers 7-4. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

    Disregarding his lackluster young career, something tells me he’s a player to keep an eye on tonight.

    Scoreboard watching:

    It’s good for the Kings players to keep their focus, but for the nail-biting fans it’s scoreboard watching time!

    There are two other huge games in effect for the Kings tonight: the Arizona Coyotes at the Calgary Flames and the Winnipeg Jets at the St. Louis Blues.

    Clearly, and unfortunately, we need to root for the Blues and Coyotes tonight.  Both teams need to win in regulation to limit the points the Jet and Flames can add to their total.

    Heading into the night the Kings are tied with the Flames in points at 93, and both teams are behind Winnipeg by 1 point.  L.A. needs to pass Calgary to slide into the 3rd place in the Pacific Division, and/or nudge out the Jets for the second Wild-Card spot in the Western Conference.

    It’s sure to be an entertaining night.

    Go Kings Go!

    Next: Why Nick Shore Has Replaced Mike Richards

    Apr 2, 2015; Los Angeles, CA, USA; Los Angeles Kings defenseman Brayden McNabb (3) and Edmonton Oilers center Matt Hendricks (23) go for the puck during the third period of the game at Staples Center. Kings won 8-2. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports