Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 03/12/13 at 09:54 AM ET
By Matthew Feuerman of TiqIQ,
In the crowded Northwest division, only five points separate the Edmonton Oilers (who are currently in fourth place) and the Minnesota Wild, who, while in first, sit there less than comfortably. One slot higher than the Oilers are the Avalanche, who, like the team from Edmonton, sit near .500 and feel the push to right the ship and succeed now rather than later, which the shortened season doesn’t afford them the opportunity to do.
This crucial mid-season matchup takes place tonight at the Pepsi Center in Denver, Colo. Avalanche tickets are generally very affordable and this game is no different with the average seat going for $39, according to TiqIQ. Better yet, the “get-in” price is only $9. Those prices are trending downwards at a rate of 32 percent, TiqIQ reports. Normally, the Avs home average is $67, which means prices to tonight’s Oilers-Avs skate are down 42 percent from that average. A trip to the United States is well worth it for Edmonton fans looking for a bargain on Edmonton Oilers tickets.
For the Oilers, offense has been a problem. Analysts are flummoxed as to why one of the league’s top young teams, with potential stars like Jordan Eberle, Sam Gagner, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and the number one pick in last year’s draft, Nail Yakupov, has struggled so mightily to light the lamp this year. Currently, the Oilers rank fourth to last in goals scored and 25th in shooting percentage, due in large part to Nugent-Hopkins and captain Ryan Smyth meager three combined goals. Defensively, only two of the Oilers’ starters (Magnus Paajarvi and Mark Fistric) are in the plus column.
In Colorado, the Avs have also struggled to score, ranking in the league’s bottom third in goals scored. Outside of P.A. Parenteau, Matt Duchene and Paul Stastny, the franchise lacks offensive weapons. While grateful for John Mitchell’s unexpected eight goals so far, the Avs need to be deeper than one line who its opposition can send its top defensive pair out against. Luckily, those same underperforming forward units have been solid in the neutral zone and have limited the other team’s scoring chances.
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