The Edmonton Oilers are slated to run a mostly-NHL lineup tonight against the Calgary Flames. It’s probably safe to say that any at-bats given to bubble boys from here on in means said players are under serious consideration for the final roster. Here are tonight’s projected lines and pairings:
- Horcoff-Jacques-Hemsky: The top line auditions continue, although at this point the smart money would be on Dustin Penner returning (the Comrie-O’Sullivan chemistry probably sealed the deal). Jacques’ seems to have improved conditioning this fall and he certainly does have some skills.
- Brule-Penner-Nilsson: Big game for Brule and Nilsson I’d think, if this line popped a couple of goals it might help the chances of Brule and Nilsson making the big club.
- Cogliano-Moreau-Brennan: Interesting line here, Pisani would seem to be the obvious choice for the Brennan role. It’ll be a tough night if Brennan ends up being overwhelmed by the Flames’ veterans.
- Comrie-O’Sullivan-Stone: I can see this line staying intact for opening night. Stone gives the line some grit and aggression, O’Sullivan has some experience in the NHL and Comrie can help an offense.
- Souray-Gilbert: It’s a logical pairing if we assume Gilbert is the puck mover/guy who pinches and Souray is the stay-at-home guy until they need the Field Marshal.
- Grebeshkov-Visnovsky: This has potentially hilarious possibilities. If Grebeshkov forgets the tinfoil hat and Lubo goes walkabout the Oilers might be looking on a few three-on-none’s going the other way.
- Strudwick-Smid: I wonder if Strudwick is in any kind of trouble on this roster. They have Chorney on the roster currently and Strudwick might be vulnerable. Not likely, though.
- Khabibulin: SO in his first game, make it two in a row?