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The Edmonton Oilers will try to tie up this Battle of Alberta game with a win on the road. Edmonton had no problem scoring in Game One and put up six goals. However, that was not enough as the Flames scored an insane nine goals.
The Edmonton Oilers were not always in the Playoff race. They showed some flashes of dominance in the first half but were consistent. However, Edmonton turned on the jets in the second half and had one of the best finishes to the season. They won 13 of their final 16 games and took the second spot in the Pacific Division.
Edmonton scored 27 goals in the First Round on their way to eliminating the Los Angeles Kings in seven games. They were down 3-2 after five games but won the next two games and shut out the Kings 2-0 in Game Seven.
The Oilers have seen all the usual faces step up in the Playoffs. Zach Hyman, Evan Bouchard, and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins have played well, but Evander Kane, Leon Draisaitl, and Connor McDavid have been the stars. Kane has been a scoring machine and leads the Oilers with seven goals. Kane also has a +/- of five. Kane is spending a lot of time on the ice with Leon Draisaitl. Draisaitl has six goals and six assists. Connor McDavid has been a points machine for the Oilers. McDavid has 18 points and leads the Oilers with a +/- of nine.
Mike Smith was the Oilers’ starting goaltender in First Round. He was the backup for most of the season but was thrust into the starter role after Mikko Koskinen went down with an injury. However, Koskinen is healthy now and trying to be the starter once more. Koskinen played in Game One of this series and struggled; he gave up five goals on 37 shots. It is unclear if Koskinen will start in this game, but the Oilers need a netminder to step up.
The Calgary Flames have not scored as much as the Flames in the Playoffs, but they have dominated on the defensive side. The Flames only gave up 14 goals in Round One.
Calgary has seen strong play from Johnny Gaudreau, Matthew Tkachuk, Elias Lindholm, and Mikael Backlund. Gaudreau leads the Oilers with nine assists, Tkachuk and Lindholm have four goals each, and Backlund leads the Flames with a +/- of six. The Flames’ defensemen have been crucial in the Playoffs. The defense held the Dallas Stars to two goals a game in Round One.
Jacob Markstrom has played almost every Playoff minute in net for the Flames. Other than the previous game, Markstrom has been a brick wall. He has a .923 save percentage and only allowed 17 goals.
The Oilers may be on the road, but they will win behind strong goaltender play.
|Edmonton Oilers||Head-to-Head||Calgary Flames|
|Jay Woodcroft||Head Coach||Darryl Sutter|
|49-27-6 (2nd in Pacific Division)||Standing||50-21-11 (1st in Pacific Division)|
|Connor McDavid (18)||Points||Johnny Gaudreau (11)|
|Evander Kane (7)||Goals||Matthew Tkachuk (4)|
|Connor McDavid (13)||Assists||Johnny Gaudreau (9)|
|Connor McDavid (9)||+/-||Mikael Backlund (6)|
|Evander Kane (4.25)||Shots (Per Game)||Johnny Gaudreau (4)|
The Edmonton Oilers are not favored to win this game but will if they draw penalties and win the First Period.
Edmonton had an elite power-play unit during the season and has had an elite power-play unit during the Playoffs. They are converting on over 30% of their power-play attempts and have seven power-play goals. It is critical for Edmonton to draw penalties and score power-play goals. Calgary has a high-powered offense, and Edmonton will only be able to match it with power-play goals.
The Oilers are facing a tough Flames’ home crowd. They need to quiet the crowd by winning the First Period. If they go into the first intermission leading, the fans (and the team) will be discouraged.
The Calgary Flames are the favorites but will only leave Calgary with a 2-0 lead if they shoot a lot and play strong defense.
The Flames are averaging an absurd 41.9 shots per game in the Playoffs. They need to maintain this shooting pace as the Playoffs continue. If they do, they may win the Stanley Cup.
The Flames may have scored nine goals in their last game, but they gave up six goals too. The Calgary defensemen have to step up because they cannot score nine goals again.
Connor McDavid is the obvious choice; not only did he have an incredible regular season with 123 points, but he also leads all players with 18 Playoff points.
McDavid has to continue finding his teammates and taking shots when necessary. He is the most talented player on the ice and should act like it.
Johnny Gaudreau is the only Flames player that can attempt to match Connor McDavid. Gaudreau only has 11 Playoff points but has the potential to dominate and score goals.
Gaudreau must take over the game for the Flames. He is their best offensive hope and needs to play excellent hockey.
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|Edmonton Oilers vs Calgary Flames Information|
|What||Edmonton Oilers vs Calgary Flames|
|Where||Scotiabank Saddledome, Calgary, Alberta|
|When||Friday, May 20, 10:30 PM EST|
|How to Watch||ESPN|
Max Heering graduated from the University of Kansas Sport Management program in May 2020. Max follows and writes about the NBA, NFL, MLB, NHL, MLS, college football, and college basketball. In his free time, you can catch Max draining threes on the basketball court. Email: [email protected]More info on Max Heering
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