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The Oilers Will Make The Playoffs, and Here's Why

Published December 26, 2022 at 10:29

There are multiple reasons why the Oilers will be playing in the postseason in 2023.

1) With the duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, how can they miss? McDavid has 30 goals in 35 games and Draisaitl has 21 tallies. McDavid's play can only be expected to pick up as the playoffs approach. He had 15 goals, 29 assists in his last 24 games of the 2021-22 season. While he can't do it alone, he certainly knows how to gear it up as the season progresses. Stopping him is just a pipedream.

2) Evander Kane's return to the lineup can really give them a boost. They certainly miss his physicality even with Klim Kostin attempting to fill the void in that area. Kane had five goals and 13 points in 14 games before his scary injury. His return is still unknown as his team awaits his recovery. Playing without Kane has caused some lineup changes and things will be much better once he's back.

3) Ryan Nugent-Hopkins has really stepped up his play. After a down season last year, where he only collected 11 goals, and 50 points in 63 games, he has elevated his play considerably this season. He has 18 goals, 23 assists in 35 games this season, helping the Oilers get past missing Kane's output.

4) The Kings and Kraken's play has to be described as two teams who are not going to be able to overtake the Oilers. Both teams are in real trouble in net. In L.A. both Calvin Petersen (who was sent down to the AHL due to poor play) and veteran Jonathan Quick have not been effective. That leaves Pheonix Copley to hold down the net. He's only been in 26 NHL games, so how much longer can his excellent play continue? Then, the Kraken have similar issues between the posts. They have a very good offence, but both Martin Jones and Philipp Grubauer have not been stopping too many pucks. What the Oilers must do is get some decent performances from Jack Campbell, and that's hoped to happen sooner rather than later.

5) Forward depth is on the Oilers' side with such players as Dylan Holloway, Mattias Janmark, Kostin, James Hamblin, Derek Ryan, and Devin Shore stepping up. Janmark and Kostin weren't playing in the NHL before Kane got injured. They were able to play due to the Oilers being right at the salary cap. So, they are making the best of the opportunity with the team for the first time. As the playoffs near, depth will certainly be in the Oilers' favour.

All these factors will lead to the Oilers making another postseason appearance, and hopefully be participating in a Cup Final this go around.

We shall see, as they must play as they have been of late and close games out. And, you never know maybe even getting some help on defence will lock up things for them. Hear that GM Ken Holland?
December 26   |   398 answers
The Oilers Will Make The Playoffs, and Here's Why

Will the Oilers make the playoffs?

Yes17042.7 %
Absolutely!6616.6 %
Not sure yet7318.3 %
Only if their defence improves8922.4 %
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