Game Seven: What to Watch for – Los Angeles @ Edmonton

Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

Game Seven: What to Watch for – Los Angeles @ Edmonton

Hockey

Game Seven: What to Watch for – Los Angeles @ Edmonton

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Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

The two best words in sports: Game Seven. There will be three game sevens on Saturday night in the Stanley Cup Playoffs. Three do or die games. Three game seven heroes. Three teams will advance, and three teams will go home. 

How We Got Here

The Kings came into this series as heavy underdogs, but you would not have known it after game one. Los Angeles rolled with the punches and capitalized on nearly all its opportunities to win 4-3. The Oilers responded in a big way, though. Edmonton won games two and three by six goals each, outscoring LA 14-2 over those games.

Once again, everyone wrote the Kings off. Not to be bothered by the outside noise, Los Angeles responded with a dominant 4-0 win in game four to even the series at two. The Kings would lead game five 4-2 late until Leon Draisaitl scored twice to force overtime. After weathering the Edmonton storm in the third, LA came out in overtime and dominated the first 72 seconds leading to an Adrian Kempe winner.

Game six shifted the series back to southern California but it was the road team that jumped out to a 2-0 lead. The Kings wouldn’t go away as LA tied the game early in the third period. The Oilers responded by breaking the tie with 5:50 left and added an empty net goal to win 4-2 and force a game seven.

By the Numbers

  • Connor McDavid leads all players with 12 points so far this postseason
  • McDavid, Draisaitl and Evander Kane have combined for 29 points this series (44% of the Oilers points this series)
  • Phillip Danault has tallied five points and is a +6 this series as he has had one of the biggest impacts for LA
  • Edmonton’s power play has hit at a 38.9% clip this postseason (second in the NHL)
  • The Oilers penalty kill has hit at an 87.5% clip this postseason (fourth in the NHL)

What to Expect

The Kings have been playing extremely physical this series. LA has been able to shut down one of Edmonton’s big dogs in each of its wins this series, and it has been Draisaitl more often than not. Los Angeles will throw four lines at the Oilers and try to grind out greasy goals and shutdown Edmonton’s top players. 

McDavid and Draisaitl will be up to their usual antics making difficult goals look simple. Ideally, the Oilers would love a game where it can simply trade chances for 60 minutes. A tight-checking game may not work for the home side.

The tempo of this game will be determined in the first five minutes of this game. I think it will be tight checking but will have one or two small periods of wide-open play. This is where the Oilers need to pour it on. If the Kings can play their game and limit Edmonton’s superstars, they will advance.

Prediction

The Kings will shock the world and knock out the Oilers. LA will control a tight-checking, low-scoring game by a score of 3-2.

Game Seven Hero: Phillip Danault

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