Canadian – Oilers match tonight | Trevor Letowski hopes for a less chaotic day

(Edmonton, Alberta) Facing Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl is already complicated in itself for a coaching staff. Imagine when there is one less resource behind the bench.

It is in this situation that the Canadian will face the Oilers on Tuesday evening at Rogers Place. This will be the Habs’ second game since Martin St-Louis left the team for family reasons.

The first meeting ended in a 5-2 defeat in Calgary, and listening to Trevor Letowski, who replaced St-Louis in the meantime, recount the thread of events, we understand that Saturday was a tumultuous day.

“We had our morning meeting to prepare. It’s different when Martin is there, it’s HIS meeting, explained Letowski, after optional training Tuesday noon. Plus, with the emotion… The players didn’t know what was happening and it came out of nowhere for them at our morning meeting. We knew it the day before, but they didn’t know it. It happened quickly. We feel more at ease for this evening. »

So much for the human aspect. Then, behind the bench, there are no longer four, but three: Letowski, Stéphane Robidas (defenders) and Alex Burrows (attackers). They have to cut somewhere. It appears that it is the individual fixes which are less frequent.

“Normally it’s Martin and I who monitor the confrontations, and Burrows talks to the attackers when they come back to show them things. Now the roles change, Burrows has to help me with the confrontations,” reveals Letowski.

“When you need a quick reaction, it can be more difficult,” confirmed Rafaël Harvey-Pinard, “but they did an excellent job, they have experience and they played the game. We are in good hands. »

The question of matchup management is particularly interesting because of the aforementioned McDavid and Draisaitl in the opposing camp. At Monday’s training, they each piloted a trio, but they will sometimes play within the same unit.

“We’re on the road, and against this team, which sometimes makes changes, it’s very hard to predict, so it’s hard to have direct confrontations,” continued Letowski.

These confrontations are valued by the CH. On January 13, during the Oilers’ visit, St-Louis systematically confronted McDavid with Kaiden Guhle, Mike Matheson and the Nick Suzuki trio. And McDavid had been shut out 5-5.

We guess that Kris Knoblauch will try to take the CH on the wrong foot and obtain certain advantageous confrontations for number 97.

Pearson left out


Tanner Pearson

Some changes to the Canadian’s lineup. In defense, Johnathan Kovacevic will replace Jayden Struble, while in attack, Michael Pezzetta will join the lineup and veteran Tanner Pearson will have to give up his place.

This is the first time this season that Peason has been left out when healthy.

“It’s always difficult with a respected player who’s been in the league for a long time,” Letowski admitted. But Tanner was told a while ago that we were thinking about taking him out of the lineup. It’s not like it came out of nowhere. I told him yesterday, he didn’t find out when he got up this morning. We have some good young guys who haven’t played much recently. »

Pearson is looking for himself this season with 12 points in 48 games. The 31-year-old veteran missed 19 games midseason to nurse an injury, and he has been limited to one goal and three assists in 21 outings since his return.

Samuel Montembeault will defend the Montreal net.

Furthermore, Christian Dvorak participated in morning training with his teammates. The forward wore a gray sweater, suggesting he was not given the green light to receive hits. On January 4, the Habs announced that their season was over due to a pectoral muscle injury. Asked whether Dvorak was ahead of the predictions, Letowski refused to comment.

Kirby Dach also joined his teammates dressed in gray, but he did so at the end of the session, when most of the players were retreating to the locker room.


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