Manor Projected Lineups: LA Kings at Edmonton Oilers, Get Used to It

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Death, taxes, and the Kings and Oilers going head-to-head in the postseason. (Maybe?)

With just 11 games remaining on LA’s schedule, a third consecutive matchup between these two Pacific Division rivals seems destined to take place. Currently, they sit in second and third place in the Division, with Edmonton holding a three-point lead in a race for home-ice advantage.

Coming into play on Thursday night, the Kings are winners of four in a row. They’re playing with a chip on their shoulder and confidence that has not been seen since the early days of the 2023-24 season. Additionally, they’re nearly fully healthy and are now looking to stay hot as playoff hockey gets that much closer. For head coach Jim Hiller, it likely won’t take much to get his team ready to play tonight. His group still has plenty to prove against Connor McDavid and company in Edmonton. Add it the fact neither side really enjoys each other’s company, and it should make for a chippy and physical battle tonight.

In what will continue to be story until the streak is broken: no team has beaten the Kings when Viktor Arvidsson is in the lineup this year. Beyond the 7-0 record, it’s difficult to fully encapsulate what this player means to the organization, besides saying they are a totally different team with him on the ice. Making his return even sweeter is that Carl Grundstrom is likely to get back into action very shortly, as well — two forwards should be huge for LA come game 83 are finding themselves ready to go at just the right time.

Going against Edmonton is almost always a highly competitive and physical battle. It’s been consistent narrative for three years now, but the question remains if LA can stop the ever-so-dangerous power play of the Oilers. Statistically, LA holds the top penalty kill in the league. Conversely, the Oilers have not been as deadly with the man advantage as they have in previous years, but the Kings don’t need any reminders of just how good it can be. Simply look at the last two playoff series.

As for any lineup changes, beyond a potential goalie swap, Hiller’s options are extremely limited. Arthur Kaliyev has not even been taking pregame warmups and is likely to sit out again. That leaves Hiller with the 11+7 configuration again, a lineup mix that’s been working just fine.

Once Grundsrom is ready to go — which won’t be tonight — LA management will have the difficult task of figuring out how to become salary cap compliant, as sending down defenseman Jacob Moverare won’t be enough. That’s a problem for at least a few days from now, though.

As we reported over the weekend, Alex Turcotte did not make the trip to Canada with the Kings, nor have they called up any reinforcements just yet. Most likely, that means Hiller will stick with the 11+7 configuration until at least the second game of a back-to-back set later this week. There is also the potential of Carl Grundstrom being available to return near the tail-end of the trip.

Statistically Speaking


— Trevor Moore has eight points (5G, 3A) over his last seven games against Edmonton, dating back to April 22, 2022.

— No active skater has a higher +/- rating against Edmonton than Anze Kopitar’s plus-31, while fellow teammate Drew Doughty places second league-wide with a plus-23 rating.

— Doughty also has 12 points (2G, 10A) in his last 13 games against the Oilers, dating back to the 2019-20 season. Additionally, Doughty is tied with Rob Blake and Steve Duchesne for the most goals against the Oilers by a defenseman in team history.

— Quinton Byfield enters tonight with a three-game point streak (2G, 3A) against Edmonton. He is also one goal away from recording his first career 20-goal season. The last Kings player to record at least 20 goals in a season at age 21 or younger was Anze Kopitar in 2008-09.

— Entering play vs. the Oilers on Thursday, the Kings hold a league-leading 85.7% penalty killing percentage (PK%). The team has allowed just 18 power-play goals over their last 120 shorthanded situations, dating back to Jan. 1, 2024, and a league-low 32 power-play goals in 224 shorthanded situations overall this season.

— LA has also generated some offense while on the PK, as well. They sit tied for fourth in the league with 10 goals on the kill, trailing only St. Louis (11), Dallas (12), and Philadelphia (15).

Kings Projected Lineup vs. Oiklers


Byfield – Kopitar – Kempe
Moore – Danault – Fiala
Laferriere – Dubois – Arvidsson
Lewis – Lizotte

Anderson – Doughty
Gavrikov – Roy
Englund – Spence
Moverare

Talbot (starter)
Rittich

Likely scratches: Kaliyev

Injured: Turcotte

LTIR: Copley, Grundstrom

Key Game Info


Puck drop is set for 6:00 pm Pacific Time and will be televised by Bally Sports.

Across the Ice


Edmonton is coming off a 4-3 victory over Winnipeg on Thursday.

Here’s how they lined up for that one:

Nugent-Hopkins – McDavid – Hyman
Henrique – Draisaitl – Foegele
Kane – McLeod – Perry
Janmark – Ryan – Brown

Ekholm – Bouchard
Nurse – Ceci
Kulak – Desharnais

Skinner

In their last 10 games, the Oilers are 5-3-2. As the home team, they’re 23-8-3 this season.

On This Day in Kings History

On March 28, 2019, Dustin Brown passed Dave Taylor as the @LAKings' all-time leader in games played when he appeared in his 1,112th NHL game versus the Vancouver Canucks. Brown retired with 1,296 games played in 18 seasons with the #LAKings.#GoKingsGo pic.twitter.com/SWwuN3nzo6

— The Kingstorian (@Kingstorian) March 28, 2024




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