Prediction, Preview, and Odds
#61 Arizona Coyotes 5.5 vs.
#62 Edmonton Oilers -120
Saturday, January 18, 2020 at 3:00pm EST
Rogers Place, Edmonton
Written by Chris Kubala

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A pair of teams in the thick of the Pacific Division race take the ice in Western Canada. The Arizona Coyotes are on the road as they make the trip to face the Edmonton Oilers Saturday afternoon. Arizona was on the road as they traveled to face Vancouver in another Pacific Division tilt Thursday night, losing 3-1. Edmonton earned a 4-2 home win over Nashville Tuesday night in their previous contest. The teams split the last eight meetings with the Oilers prevailing 4-3 in a shootout on the road in the most recent matchup on November 24, 2019. Five of those eight contests have been decided in overtime or a shootout.

Arizona Coyotes Looking to Hold Top Spot in Pacific Division

Arizona tangled with Vancouver in a Pacific Division clash Thursday night in British Columbia. The Coyotes entered Friday tied for the top spot in the Pacific Division with the Flames. Arizona is 22nd in the league in goals for as they average 2.76 goals per contest on the season. The Coyotes are third in the league in goals against by allowing 2.56 goals per game on the year. Arizona is tied for 14th in the league with the man advantage as they successfully convert 19.9 percent of their power play chances this season. The Coyotes are tied for 10th in the league in penalty killing by successfully getting through 82 percent of their shorthanded situations.

Against the Canucks, Arizona was unable to get much going offensively and it ended up costing them the contest. The Coyotes held a 14-9 edge in shots on goal but skated off tied at one after 20 minutes of play. Christian Dvorak opened the scoring with his 12th of the year at 7:59 off assists from Taylor Hall and Oliver Ekman-Larsson. Arizona gave up the tying goal on the power play later in the period. The second period saw the Coyotes with a 10-9 edge in shots on goal but they were outscored 1-0 to trail 2-1 after 40 minutes of play. The third period saw Arizona with an 11-7 edge in shots but gave up the only goal to close things out and end up with the loss. Adin Hill made 22 saves for the Coyotes, who held a 35-25 edge in shots in the game.

Edmonton Oilers Try to Maintain Hold on Playoff Spot

Edmonton won for the fourth time in five games as they took care of Nashville at home Tuesday night. The Oilers entered Friday night fifth in the Pacific Division, two points back of division-leading Calgary and Arizona. Entering Friday, the Oilers did hold the second wild card spot. Edmonton is tied for 13th in the league in scoring with an average of 3.04 goals per game this season. The Oilers are tied for 19th in goals against as they give up 3.10 goals per contest. Edmonton is tied for first in the league with the man advantage as they cash in 29.9 percent of their chances on the power play this season. The Oilers are 5th in the league in penalty killing as they successfully handle 83.1 percent of their shorthanded situations.

Against the Predators, the Oilers were in a high-scoring opening period before pulling away late to earn the win. Edmonton held a 13-12 edge in shots in the opening period of play but skated off with the game tied at two. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins opened the scoring with his 13th goal of the year at 9:01 off an assist from Leon Draisaitl. After giving up a pair of goals to trail 2-1, Draisaitl scored his 26th of the year, on the power play, at 19:42 of the period. Alex Chiasson and Connor McDavid assisted on the goal to tie the game. In the second period, the Oilers were outshot 12-10 but scored the lone goal of the stanza to take a 3-2 lead after 40 minutes. Josh Archibald scored his fifth of the year at 9:09 off assists from McDavid and Oscar Klefbom. The final period saw Edmonton with a 9-8 edge in shots and a 1-0 edge on the scoreboard to close things out. Draisaitl scored his second of the game and 27th of the year, into an empty net, at 19:11 off an assist from McDavid to salt away the win. Mike Smith made 30 saves for the Oilers in the win as both teams recorded 32 shots on goal.

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Edmonton has been playing well of late with some momentum recently with four wins in their last five games. This is going to be a battle where every point is going to be important as the Pacific Division is a crowded race with the top five teams are separated by three points. The Coyotes are starting to get things clicking with their acquisition of Taylor Hall to the mix. Arizona is very good in their own zone but they have to start lighting the lamp a bit more often in order to solidify their playoff position. With the way Edmonton is playing right now, led by the dynamic duo of McDavid and Draisaitl, give the Oilers the edge here.

 

Prediction: Edmonton Oilers -122

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Arizona comes into this game with a solid 14-9-3 record on the road this season. The Coyotes have a -3 goal differential (66-63) and a -41 shot differential (841-800) in those contests this year. That gives Arizona an average of 4.96 goals per game when they are the road team this year. Edmonton is 11-8-3 on home ice this season. The Oilers own a -8 goal differential (79-71) and a -23 shot differential (680-657) on the year in those contests. That makes for a lot of offense in the Oilers' home games as they see an average of 6.82 goals per contest. Look for Edmonton's resurgent offense to carry the day and push this one over the mark.

Prediction: Over 5.5
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Written By Chris Kubala

Christopher Kubala has been crunching stats and following sports for over 30 years. His in-depth analysis and passion for sports have led him to writing books about sports, regularly being featured on sports talk radio and as the go-to person for any obscure trivia. Now he is writing for our team here at Winners @ Whiners. Chris keeps an eye on transactions and statistics like a hawk, especially when it comes to football, both the NFL and college. He is also very knowledgeable in the NHL, the NBA, college basketball and MLB. If you want consistency, then be sure and check out Chris’ content daily.