The Edmonton Oilers will host the Philadelphia Flyers in an inter-conference battle Friday night from the Rogers Place. The Flyers are coming off a 6-5 overtime road loss to the Flames, while the Oilers defeated the Avalanche on Tuesday before playing in Winnipeg on Thursday night. The Flyers defeated the Oilers in both meetings last season.
Flyers Fall to Flames in Second Straight Loss
The Philadelphia Flyers will resume a five-game road trip in this contest. They own a 1-2 record through the first three games which included a tough 6-5 overtime loss in Calgary on Wednesday night. Flyers’ captain Claude Giroux came through with another multi-point effort with two assists in the victory. The 11-year veteran left-winger has notched eight points in his last five games, and he is up to 11 goals along with 27 assists on the season. Giroux has tallied 15 points in 13 career games against the Oilers.
Sean Couturier extended his point streak to three games with a goal and two assists in Wednesday’s win. The 26-year old center is having a terrific season, accumulating 23 points in 27 games. The Flyers now feature a 7-6-2 road record on the season.
— Philadelphia Flyers (@NHLFlyers) December 13, 2018
Philadelphia has used five different goalies this season. They will start either Anthony Stolarz or Michael Neuvirth between the pipes in this contest in the first game of a back-to-back set. Stolarz owns a 3.80 GAA along with a 2-1-2 record, while Neuvirth has conceded nine goals paired with an 0-2 record in two games. The Flyers are currently averaging 3.1 goals, placing them 14th in the NHL. They are conceding an average of 3.7 goals, pegging them down at 29th in the NHL.
Oilers Thriving Under HC Ken Hitchcock
The Edmonton Oilers are playing their best hockey of the season under new head coach Ken Hitchcock. They have won seven out of their last eight games overall, and they have also won four straight games heading into Thursday’s game in Winnipeg. Connor McDavid continues to produce at a high level, collecting another nine points in his last five games which included a goal and an assist in Tuesday’s win over the Avalanche. The 21-year old center now stands fourth in the NHL with 43 points on the season. McDavid has tallied seven points in six career games against the Flyers.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins is also playing well, notching five points in his last four games. The 25-year old center is quietly having a productive season, amassing 29 points in 31 games. The Oilers are sporting a solid 9-4-1 record on home ice this season.
Our @SportChek Panel touches base from Winnipeg to discuss the team's current four-game win streak as well as #Oilers options on defence with Oscar Klefbom heading to IR with a hand injury. pic.twitter.com/7kqKEh04gd
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) December 12, 2018
Edmonton has been giving Mikko Koskinen a majority of the playing time in net recently, and he continues to excel, recording a 2.20 GAA and a 10-3-1 record, while Cam Talbot owns a 7-9-1 record along with a 3.12 GAA and an .895 save percentage. The Oilers are averaging 2.8 goals on the season, pegging them 23rd in the NHL. They are conceding an average of 2.9 goals, positioning them 15th in the NHL.
The Edmonton Oilers are:
- 4-0 in their last 4 games overall.
- 5-0 in their last 5 home games.
- 4-1 in their last 5 home games against a team with a losing record.
The Philadelphia Flyers are:
- 1-4 in their last 5 games against a team with a winning record.
- 3-9 in their last 12 games overall.
- 2-6 in their last 8 games in Edmonton.
The Bottom Line What to bet on this game.
Full-Game Side Bet
I am siding with the Oilers in this contest. The Oilers are on a roll, winning seven out of their last eight games, and they have also won five consecutive home games. They are receiving outstanding goaltending, and they have conceded two or fewer goals in six out of their last eight games heading into Thursday’s action.
Furthermore, the Flyers are playing the fourth game of a tough five game road trip, and their defensive play has been a weakness. They are allowing an average of 4.2 goals over their last ten games.
Prediction: Edmonton Oilers
Full-Game Total Pick
I expect a high-scoring battle. The Flyers are averaging a solid 3.3 goals in their last 10 games, and they have scored a combined 12 goals in the first three games of their current road trip, plus the over is 4-0 in their last four games overall.
In addition, the Oilers have heated up offensively, netting a combined 17 goals in their last four games heading into Thursday’s action, plus the over is 5-0 in their last five home games against the Flyers.
Full-Game Prop Bet
The Oilers should have a productive night offensively. They have netted at least three goals in four out of their last five games, and the Flyers continue to receiver poor goaltending. The Flyers have allowed at least four goals in five out of their last seven games.
Prediction: Oilers Team Total: Over
Half-Time Side Pick
I am going with the under on the first period total. The Flyers lowest scoring period takes place in the first where they have only scored 22 goals in their 29 games on the season. Also, the Oilers have only netted 26 goals in the opening period in their 32 games on the year.
Prediction: First Period Total: Under