The Edmonton Oilers and Calgary Flames will renew their “Battle of Alberta” in a best-of-7 Western Conference second round series of the Stanley Cup Playoffs. The teams split their four regular-season games 2-2. This is the first playoff series between these provincial rivals since the 1991 Smythe Division semifinal that Edmonton won 4-3.
Oilers vs. Flames odds from DraftKings Sportsbook
Our Pick: Flames in 7
Hello star power! Oilers superstar Connor McDavid was nominated for the Hart Trophy...again. Flames superstar Johnny Gaudreau SHOULD have been a Hart Trophy finalist, so this is his time to prove he’s as worthy as the guy on the other end of the province. Hopefully Darryl Sutter’s brand of risk averse playoff hockey doesn’t drag this potentially amazing series down to a few 1-0 games played in the neutral zone. McDavid will have his moments.
Even in his struggles against the Kings there were times that he remember who he was and that he could do anything. McDavid’s linemate Leon Draisaitl will be there to clean up whenever he can. But Gaudreau’s got himself a heck of a linemate too in Matthew Tkachuk. As we get deeper in the playoffs goalie play becomes paramount. Mike Smith is a grizzly tested veteran and a stabilizing force in Edmonton, but Jacob Markstrom is a Vezina finalist and when this series reaches Game 7, because it will, I think Markstrom will be the better player.
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