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Oilers coach Knoblauch disguises lineup from Canucks at practice

Published May 12, 2024 at 1:20 PM
BY FRED MALTES
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In a thrilling turn of events, Oilers' coach Knoblauch orchestrated a surprise play that left the Canucks grappling for a response.

Just when it seemed like Leon Draisaitl wouldn't hit the ice for game two, Knoblauch shocked everyone by slotting him into the first line right before the puck drop. This last-minute decision proved to be a strategic masterstroke, as the Canucks found themselves overwhelmed by the Oilers' onslaught.

The practice sessions leading up to tonight's game saw the Oilers adopting a cloak-and-dagger approach, with every forward donning black and blue uniforms, making it impossible to decipher the line combinations. In a move that stirred speculation, Draisaitl was conspicuously absent from practice.

However, there's a strong consensus that he will be ready to skate in the game, indicating that his absence might just be another layer of Knoblauch's strategic gameplay. Follow the updates here:





As the Oilers prepare for their first home game of the second round tonight at 6:30MT, they have a tactical upper hand.

Hosting the game grants them the last change, an advantage Knoblauch is expected to exploit, especially in deploying Draisaitl and McDavid. While the duo may not skate together consistently, opportunities are ripe for Knoblauch to pair them during pivotal moments of the match, maximizing their impact.

Across the rink, Canucks coach Rick Tocchet is bracing his team for another potential showcase of Edmonton's dynamic duo. Tocchet, candid about the challenges in containing McDavid and Draisaitl, hinted at defensive shifts, particularly as Tyler Myers might be sidelined due to an injury.

The defensive adjustments are a direct counter to Edmonton's offensive maneuvers, highlighting the chess-like battle between the benches.

Tonight's game is more than just a contest of skills—it's a test of wits, with coaches from both teams playing pivotal roles in the unfolding drama.

The Oilers, boosted by their home crowd, are looking to secure a dominant position in the series before heading back to Vancouver. As the stakes rise, so does the anticipation, promising a game filled with strategic plays and top-tier hockey action.
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May 12   |   104 answers
Oilers coach Knoblauch disguises lineup from Canucks at practice

Do you think the Oilers should hide their lineup from the Canucks?

Yes, don't give them anything7673.1 %
No, just get a good practice in2524 %
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