The post Oilers Make Interesting Lineup Choices For Game 1 vs. Kings appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

It looks like the Edmonton Oilers have decided what their starting lineup for the first-round playoff series against the Los Angeles Kings is going to be. And, some interesting choices are being made. Most notably, two regulars and experienced depth forwards are out, while a deserving younger prospect and an injured winger are in.

Daniel Nugent-Bowman of the Athletic posted that the Oilers are expected to run with a lineup that doesn’t include Connor Brown and Derek Ryan. While Brown had a tough start to the season, he’s come on strong of late with goals in the last 20 games. Choosing to sit him while he’s hitting his stride is a fascinating choice.

Meanwhile, Ryan is a versatile forward who knows his role and can be used in several ways. As those two come out, Dylan Holloway is in, and Evander Kane is on the fourth line.

Oilers expected lineup for Game 1 vs. LAK:
Henrique-McDavid-Hyman
RNH-Draisaitl-Foegele
Holloway-McLeod-Perry
Kane-Carrick-Janmark

Ekholm-Bouchard
Nurse-Ceci
Kulak-Desharnais

Skinner
Pickard

Knoblauch confirms Holloway is in. The plan is play him 10-12 minutes.

— Daniel Nugent-Bowman (@DNBsports) April 22, 2024

The biggest surprise here might be Kane. He just shared with the media on Sunday that he’s been dealing with a sports hernia issue all season and he wasn’t sure he could go. That the Oilers are moving him to the fourth line might be telling, especially given that Kane didn’t believe ice time would be a factor in his ability to be productive.

Holloway, as per head coach Kris Knoblauch is in. He’s slotted to play about 10-12 minutes and the hope is he can make the most of those minutes, paired with Ryan McLeod and Corey Perry on the third line.

This Oilers’ Playoff Lineup Is Flexible

The starting lineup could change and it will likely be altered throughout the series. As Jason Strudwick put it, this isn’t so much about guys not deserving of a spot, but more about good players having to come out of the lineup when you have a deep time, which the Oilers do.

Connor Brown Edmonton Oilers return

It would be unlikely to see Brown and Ryan sit the entire series, but much of that will depend on how successful the Oilers are. Coaches typically don’t make drastic changes if the team is winning. Should the Oilers get up 1-0 in the series, this could be the same lineup for Game 2. Kane’s productivity and ability to battle through the injury might be the biggest factor in that decision.

Next: Oilers and Evander Kane Seemingly Blow a Huge LTIR Opportunity

The post Oilers Make Interesting Lineup Choices For Game 1 vs. Kings appeared first on NHL Trade Talk.

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