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The Chicago Blackhawks will try to snap a three-game winless drought when they visit the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday night.

Chicago is coming off a 5-2 loss against the Winnipeg Jets on Sunday evening, which kicked off the Blackhawks' five-game road trip through western Canada. The defeat followed back-to-back overtime losses for Chicago, which fell 3-2 to the Minnesota Wild on Feb. 4 and 2-1 to the Boston Bruins a day later, earning one point in each contest.

The Blackhawks have only one victory since Jan. 21 -- a 3-2 shootout win at Arizona -- and know that time is running short if they want to make a run at the playoffs.

A struggling power play (28th in the league at 15 percent) has not helped matters.

"It's up to us," Blackhawks center Jonathan Toews recently said to reporters. "(We) can't make excuses, can't keep changing it either and thinking that there's some magic formula. It's up to the guys that go out there to really earn it and work for it and not take it for granted."

A road game against Edmonton presents plenty of challenges.

The Oilers are 8-3-1 in their past 12 contests and are on pace to reach the postseason for the first time since the 2016-17 campaign. Edmonton is wrapping up a three-game homestand that began with a 6-3 loss to the San Jose Sharks on Thursday night and continued with a 3-2 win over the Nashville Predators on Saturday night.

Star forward Leon Draisaitl scored his 30th and 31st goals in the most recent win over Nashville. He leads the Oilers with 85 points (31 goals, 54 assists) in 55 games this season, while teammate Connor McDavid is not far behind with 81 points (30 goals, 51 assists) in 55 games.

However, some doubt hovers over McDavid's availability for Tuesday. He bruised his knee against the Predators and his status is uncertain against the Blackhawks.

"He has a little bruise on top of his knee or something like that," Oilers head coach Dave Tippett said to reporters. "They looked at it between periods, he iced it, and they wanted to ice him right after the game. I asked him how he was doing and he said, 'I'm fine, I'm playing.' He got out there and played. As far as I know, it is nothing serious."

The Blackhawks have their own star power in the form of right winger Patrick Kane, who enters Tuesday's contest with 67 points (25 goals, 42 assists) in 55 games. Toews is second on the scoring list with 45 points (14 goals, 31 assists) in 55 games, and Alex DeBrincat ranks third with 36 points (13 goals, 23 assists) in 55 games.

DeBrincat thinks he could be doing more. His last even-strength goal came Dec. 27.

"Last year, I had a lot of bad goals," said DeBrincat, who scored 41 goals a season ago. "A lot just snuck in and it was lucky bounces, and this year those bounces just aren't going in. I don't think I'd be on the same pace as last year if I'd buried all my chances, but it's a bounce here and there that can get you hot."

Chicago's options in net are veteran goaltenders Robin Lehner (15-8-5, 2.83 goals-against average) and Corey Crawford (10-14-3, 2.92).

Edmonton will turn to either Mikko Koskinen (15-11-2, 2.91) or Mike Smith (14-9-4, 2.96) in goal.

--Field Level Media



source https://www.si.com/nhl/game/2155038

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