NHL Playoff Preview: Edmonton Oilers vs. Dallas Stars | Round 3, Game 6 | 06/02/2024

PHOTO CREDIT: CHRIS JONES-USA TODAY SPORTS

I was still nervous when it was 3-0 with half a period left, and I was still nervous when it was 3-1 with less than 5 minutes left. This season has given me an unmeasurable amount of PTSD.

It’s been an interesting 5 years for Philip Broberg. A young defenseman prospect picked in the Top 10 of his Draft year and, despite a few stints here and there, has struggled to earn himself a permanent roster spot in the NHL. But the further the Edmonton Oilers go in the Playoffs, the riskier Kris Knoblauch becomes. The 22-year-old Broberg had 10 games of postseason experience before this year, but who guessed he would have an impact at such a critical time? He played a solid and mostly quiet game in Game 4; then he really shone in Game 5. He used his size well, he blocked shots, even spent nearly a whole minute’s worth on the penalty kill, and he scored a crucial insurance goal. There’d been talks of trading him earlier in the season; many of us who grew impatient with his development welcomed that. Months later, he plays a key role in a tied third-round series. It’s still a pretty small sample size, but perhaps he’s evolving the same way as Dylan Holloway.

I know the shot clock looked bad for the Dallas Stars at one point in Game 5, but I don’t think they were as outplayed as the shot totals might’ve made you believe. Even though Stuart Skinner wasn’t as busy as Jake Oettinger, the Stars still had some Grade A scoring chances. Skinner just came up with huge saves when he needed to; he was dialed in. Chris Tanev, a game-time decision, played through his foot injury. On the first shift of his, I noticed he looked slightly off on his skates. But he still got a pretty decent shot away on Skinner after making his way through center ice.

The Oilers, with a chance to punch their ticket to the Stanley Cup Finals, need to treat tonight as if it were a Game 7. The keys to the game are…

PP Resurrected?: The powerplay merchants were back on Friday, scoring twice with the man advantage to go up 2-0. A part of me thought their PP struggles were a combination of the Stars having great defense and just the PP setup becoming a tad predictable over time. The first goal was collecting a backhand rebound after a point shot and the second one came after a long ice pass from their own net towards the offensive zone, but still staying onside. When this PP unit gets more creative, it truly is unstoppable.

Reversed, but Relatable: In Round 2, heading into Game 6, Edmonton were facing elimination against Vancouver and needed to win two Do-Or-Die games. Now, they’re leading the series, heading into Game 6 in Round 3 with a chance to end the series. They need to put themselves in Dallas’s skates and remember what it was like having their backs against the wall. The 4th win is the hardest in every series. You have to expect that the Stars will fight hard to bring a 7th game back to their rink.

Hungry Stars: This is pretty similar to the second key. Hockey is a team sport, but games like this really show you how much star players really want to win it all. Whether it’s scoring a goal, throwing a hit, blocking a shot, or making a save in Skinner’s case, your best players have to set the example when it matters. They’ve learned how to lead through adversity, now they need to teach themselves to lead when they have the upper hand. That can get harder to do in later rounds.

We Got The Jack Inside The Rink

In episode 8 of the Inside The Rink podcast, Matty and Smitty are joined by new co-host Conrad Jack. After the long hiatus, we get back to hockey with a PACKED episode!Matt Rempe & the Devils vs. Rangers Line BrawlCould the Vancouver Canucks squander a playoff opportunity? Have the Winnipeg Jets finally figured out their lines?Flyers Head Coach John Tortorella is a sound byte MACHINEOvechkin is on his way to 895, Who is next?McDavid joins elite company with 100 Assists in a seasonRyan Hartman was suspended 3 Games, was it worth 3 games??Can Auston Matthews hit 70 Goals this season?The Eastern Conference Wild Card race is heating up, who lands the two playoff berths?For all of your hockey news and more from the show, visit us at insidetherink.com and watch us on YouTube! How to support us and our sponsors:TicketmasterColumbia Sports ApparelESPN+ SubscriptionFanaticsDraft Kings – CODE ITR
  1. We Got The Jack
  2. Episode 7. Player Safety First!
  3. Episode 6. Early Trade Season
  4. Episode 5. Longing For The Chiarelli Years
  5. Episode 4. Ottawa’s On Fire

Stephen Vani

Oilers fan in Toronto. Staying up past my bedtime for Western games since the mid 2000s.

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