The Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings have played a marvelous series so far. The Oilers blew a two-goal lead in each of the first two games, but they had different results.
In the first game, Edmonton ended up seeing that blown lead cost them as Alex Iafallo scored in overtime for Los Angeles.
Obviously, now that the series is shifting, things are going to change in the series for a few different reasons.
The Los Angeles Kings will now host the Edmonton Oilers for two games.
For one, the Kings are going to be playing on their home ice, which should change the momentum just a bit. However, it wouldn’t take long for this high-powered Oilers offense to take that advantage away.
From a hockey strategy standpoint, there will be differences as well. For one, Phillip Danault did a very good job on Connor McDavid when the Kings were on the road. Now that they are going home, you may never see McDavid out there at even strength without Danault shadowing him.
Obviously, that may open up the ice for some other players. Leon Draisaitl has already been incredible in this series as he has three goals and two assists for five points in two games. If McDavid takes all the hard matchups away from him here, things might get even better for Leon.
There is also Ryan Nugent-Hopkins who had over 100 points this year. We’ll see what he is able to do at even strength now that they are on the road. The chess match here is certainly going to be very interesting.
The Edmonton Oilers might rely on their all-time great power play even more now that the series has hit the road for them. All of this talent here can make teams pay a harsh price for taking penalties against them.
Los Angeles is a team capable of putting on a defensive clinic in their own barn. That is what they are going to need to do in order to defeat Edmonton. If the Oilers can find a way to be explosive anyway, then the series won’t last very long.
You can expect both teams to come ready to play in this one. Obviously, a team would much rather go up 2-1 in the series, so both teams will have a solid game plan ready to execute. Whichever one executes it the best should win the match.