The only good thing about Wednesday night’s performance from the Chicago Blackhawks — probably their worst in this young season — is that redemption is just 24 hours away. On Thursday night, the Blackhawks return to Chicago to face Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers.
Chicago (4-2-1) waited about 50 minutes to show up for its Wednesday night game in St. Louis and finally solved Jake Allen for a pair of third-period goals. But they were already down 4-0 at that point, ultimately losing 5-2.
Do you know what Edmonton’s record is through five games this season? Go ahead, guess. You’re probably wrong: It’s 1-4-0. The Oilers won their season opener but have dropped four in a row, most recently a 5-3 home defeat against the Carolina Hurricanes. It’s been a rough start for a team that garnered consideration as a potential Stanley Cup finalist this season. According to our colleagues over at Copper and Blue, the Oilers have struggled to put together a full 60-minute performance this season. Injuries haven’t helped, with D-man Andrej Sekera likely out til 2018 while recovering from ACL surgery and Leon Draisaitl on the shelf due to a concussion. But they still have that Connor McDavid guy, who might be pretty good at this hockey thing. Kailer Yamamoto, Edmonton’s first-round pick in the 2017 NHL Draft, is expected to be in the lineup again as well.
For the Blackhawks, an optional morning skate after returning to Chicago late last night makes it tough to get a good read on the lineup for Thursday night. Word from that morning skate has Jordan Oesterle making his Blackhawks debut tonight. Tanner Kero is back as well and Anton Forsberg will be in net.
Forsberg starts tonight. Oesterle will play on the left side. Kero is in. Q wouldn't say who's out for Oesterle or Kero. #Blackhawks— Tracey Myers (@TramyersNBCS) October 19, 2017
FWIW, I’ve got Gustav Forsling and Lance Bouma getting a seat in the press box to make way for Oesterle and Kero. We’ll find out during tonight’s warmups.
|F1||Brandon Saad - Jonathan Toews - Alex DeBrincat|
|F2||Richard Panik - Nick Schmaltz - Patrick Kane|
|F3||Patrick Sharp - Artem Anisimov - John Hayden|
|F4||Lance Bouma - Tommy Wingels - Ryan Hartman|
|D1||Duncan Keith - Jan Rutta|
|D2||Gustav Forsling - Brent Seabrook|
|D3||Michal Kempny - Connor Murphy|
|F1||Sven Andrighetto - Nathan MacKinnon - Mikko Rantanen|
|F2||Gabriel Landeskog - Matt Duchene - Nail Yakupov|
|F3||Matthew Nieto - Carl Soderberg - Blake Comeau|
|F4||A.J. Greer - Alexander Kerfoot - Rocco Grimaldi|
|D1||Anton Lindholm - Erik Johnson|
|D2||Patrik Nemeth - Tyson Barrie|
|D3||Mark Barberio - Andrei Mironov|
How to watch Oilers at Blackhawks
Start time: 7:30 p.m. CT
Location: United Center, Chicago