SUN Hockey Pool

Oilers in scoring drought

ROBERT TYCHKOWSKI, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 8:44 PM ET

As long as they don’t get scored on, the Edmonton Oilers will be fine.

With most of their top six forwards traded or injured, the offence has been drier than a toasted beef jerky sandwich lately, mustering just four goals in the last five losses.

They’ve scored one goal four times and were shut out in the other, which is putting serious pressure on their goalies.

“We know they’re going to be low scoring games but that’s how we prepare for them,” said Devan Dubnyk. “The guys are working hard in front of the net, allowing us to see and stop most of the shots. It’s our job to stop the puck. But we have to keep them to 1 or 2, that’s for sure.”

Edmonton’s goalie might get a little more run support on Saturday given that the Oilers have beaten Colorado 5-1 in each of the last two meetings. But that was four injuries ago, who knows what’s in store for this one.

All the goalies know if that they have to inspire confidence in whatever’s left of the roster.

“It’s that much more important during games, if things go wrong, or you get a bad bounce or whatever the case is, to stay composed and give the guys that feeling of comfort,” said Dubnyk. “You have to let them know that you’re there and you’re going to keep going, that you’re not rattled.

“It’s more important now than ever.”

WAKE UP, CALL-UP: Alex Giroux is exhausted after playing four games in five nights, in five different cities and in two different leagues.

But you couldn’t wipe the grin off his face with shovel.

“I was pretty tired this morning, but I can’t complain,” said the Oklahoma Baron winger, part of a three-player airlift on Wednesday night. “When you get called up to the NHL you find the energy.”

Head coach Tom Renney liked what he saw from all the call-ups.

“We knew they would work hard, that game one for them would be emotional and with a lot adrenaline,” he said. “I thought they all did well; you could tell they were proud to be here and wanted badly to contribute and wanted to do well for themselves. I don’t know if there was a bad game out of any of them.”

QUICK SPIN: Defenceman Ryan Whitney, out with a knee injury since Dec. 28, went out for a brief skate in a track suit but Renney is in zero rush to get him into a few games before the season ends.

“I don’t expect him back,” said the coach. “If it’s just to say that he did, there’s no value in that. If he’s ready to play, and play a significant amount and contribute to our cause, then I would entertain that.”

robert.tychkowski@sunmedia.ca

Twitter.com/TYCHKOWSKI


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