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Oilers must strike early with Stars missing key players to win series


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Noel Drolet
May 23, 2024  (8:35)
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Oilers and Stars battling
Photo credit: CTV News Edmonton

Stars missing key contributors ahead of round 3 matchup.

The stars have been a juggernaut all playoffs, knocking off the last two years of Stanley Cup winners after some hard fought series. Their victory comes at a price however, as they are currently without their top line center and one of their best penalty killers.
For the Stars, losing Roope Hintz is a massive blow to their lineup. Hintz is a great two way forward who often drives play on offense. Hintz is only considered day to day as of right now and Pete Deboer seems optimistic for a return soon after game 1.
With Jani Hakanpaa out as well, those are two big blows to the Stars' team. The Stars are mostly running 5 defenders with a rotational sixth not playing much time, so there is tons of opportunity for the Oilers to wear down the Stars in their own zone. Sustained offensive zone pressure is the name of the game and should be Knoblauch's number one priority.
The Oilers also will very much hope that this Jake Oettinger «illness» can keep him out a couple games, since Oettinger has been scarily good so far this postseason. He holds a 5-1 record and a .956 save percentage on the road, which would terrify any team if they can't even best the Stars at home.
If the Oilers want to strike while the Stars are undermanned, they have to take advantage of this first game. They have to strike early and often and not let the Stars get comfortable and play their game.
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Oilers must strike early with Stars missing key players to win series

Who takes game 1?

Stars win at home3312.9 %
Oilers win on the road22387.1 %
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