Edmonton is clinging to second place in the Scotia North standings with 52 points and a 24-14-2 overall record through 52 games. The Oilers come in five points back of the Toronto Maple Leafs for the division lead but just one point ahead of the third-place Winnipeg Jets, who have a game in hand heading into the weekend. Meanwhile, Calgary is trying to salvage some pride after falling to 16-21-3 with 35 points in 40 games so far this season.
Can the Flames bounce back with a win at home against the Oilers on Saturday?
Smith stays hot, helps Oilers sweep OttawaEdmonton cruised to a road sweep against the Ottawa Senators with a 3-1 victory on Thursday night. Mike Smith stopped 39 of 40 shots while Kailer Yamamoto, Devin Shore and Jesse Puljujarvi all scored goals for the Oilers in the win.
The Oilers will continue to rely on veteran goaltender Mike Smith, who will make his 21st start of the season on Saturday. At age 38, Smith has been doing his best to defy father time this season and is off to one of the best starts of his career. He comes in with a 14-3-2 overall record to go along with a 2.34 GAA and .922 save percentage in 21 games (20 starts) so far this year. As good as Smith has been, he’s been even stingier on the road. In 11 starts away from home, the Oilers’ netminder is 8-1-2 with a 2.00 GAA and a .936 save percentage. Smith has also been terrific against his former team, going 4-1-0 with a 2.42 GAA and .916 sa percentage in five starts versus Calgary so far this season.
Flames cooling off, lose fourth straightCalgary last took the ice on Monday in a 5-3 loss versus the Toronto Maple Leafs. Markus Backland scored twice, including a shorthanded goal for the Flames, who extended their skid to four games with the loss. Jacob Markstrom allowed five goals on 30 shots and Andrew Mangiapane also scored for the Flames in the loss.
"Continue to be really good players, which they are."— Calgary Flames (@NHLFlames) April 9, 2021
Darryl Sutter on the expectations on a possible Mark Giordano-Chris Tanev pairing. pic.twitter.com/gracoSHXQO
The Flames have been in a free-fall for the last two weeks, losing eight of their last nine contests, including four straight at home. Calgary hasn’t been able to solve its goal-scoring woes as of late either. During that span, the Flames have averaged just 1.77 goals per game while scoring three goals of fewer in each one of their losses. As a result, Calgary has fallen to 27th in the league in scoring at just 2.49 goals per game.
Jacob Markstrom is scheduled to patrol the crease once again for the Flames on Saturday night. The 30-year-old was off to a strong start in Calgary but has fallen on hard times as of late, posting a GAA over 3.00 in each of the last three months. Markstrom comes in with a 12-14-2 overall record to go along with a 3.02 GAA and .898 save percentage in 28 starts. As you might expect, the 6-foot-6 goaltender has struggled during the team’s current slide. Over his last four starts, Markstrom is 0-4-0 with an ugly .860 save percentage during that span. Markstrom has seen Edmonton six times already this season, going 2-4-0 with a 24.62 GGAA and .849 save percentage during those matchups.
- Oilers are 9-2 in their last 11 in the third game of a 3-in-4 situation.
- Oilers are 13-4 in their last 17 vs. a team with a losing record.
- Flames are 1-5 in their last 6 home games
- Flames are 0-4 in their last 4 overall.
- Flames are 0-4 in their last 4 vs. NHL.
Best Bets for this Game
Full-Game Side Bet
Even though these two teams are headed in opposite directions, the line is actually fairly reasonable here. Edmonton has bounced back by winning three of its last four games to keep pace in the division standings. Meanwhile, Calgary has dropped eight of nine while averaging less than two goals per game during that span, At this price it’s hard to look away from the Oilers. Take Edmonton to come out on top in this Western Conference showdown on Saturday.
Full-Game Total Pick
These two teams are projected for six goals but that mark seems a bit light given the circumstances here. Calgary is tanking right now and Markstrom has been playing arguably his worst hockey of the year. While the Flames’ offense has struggled as of late, it is due for a breakout after scoring just 16 goals over its last nine games combined. On the other hand, Edmonton should be able to have a strong night offensively as well. Take this matchup to go over the projected total on Saturday.