|Calgary Flames @ Edmonton Oilers, 8 PM MT, Rogers Place, Edmonton AB|
|TV: TVSA, SN|
|Radio: Sportsnet 960|
Hockey is BACK! The preseason is over and the Flames will open up the 2017-18 season by taking a trip to.....Edmonton. The Flames and Oilers will kick the season off with The Battle of Alberta Part 1 for the new season. The Flames and Oilers are no strangers to each other and it hasn’t been pretty for the good guys lately. Edmonton swept the Flames last season, taking all 4 contests, including the season opener for the Flames in 2016-17.
Both teams played well last season and found themselves in the NHL Playoffs. Calgary bowed out in the first round by way of a sweep to their nemesis, the Anaheim Ducks. The Oilers meanwhile dispatched the San Jose Sharks in 5 and then found themselves falling victim to those same Anaheim Ducks in the Conference Semi Finals.
The Flames didn’t have the most spectacular preseason, going 2-5-0 in their 7 preseason contests, including a 2 game sweep by, you guessed it, the Oilers. Edmonton cruised through the preseason with a 6-2-0 record and looked like they didn’t miss a beat. But with all of that said, it’s the preseason and no one has once hoisted a trophy as preseason champions.
The Flames would love to come out and set the tone for the new season by thumping the Oilers right off the bat. Last season found the Flames at Rogers Place on opening night and the Oilers took it to the Flames 7-4. It’s a new season with new faces and it’s not opening night at a new arena, so maybe things will be slightly different. Edmonton grabbed hold of the bragging rights in this series last season and a young and confident Flames team will look to take those back with a solid win on the road in a hostile environment.
Here’s a look at how the teams finished last season.
|4th Pacific||Division||2nd Pacific|
|7th West||Conference||4th West|
|Monahan (27)||Goals||McDavid (30)|
|Gaudreau (61)||Points||McDavid (100)|
|Tkachuk (105)||PIM||Kassian (101)|
|Elliott (.910)||Save%||Talbot (.919)|
|20.2 (10th)||PP%||22.9 (5th)|
|81.6 (12th)||PK%||80.7 (17th)|
|Flames: Smith (C)||19-26-9||2.92||.914|
|Oilers: Talbot (E)||42-22-8||2.39||.919|
What’s Happening With The Opposition?
Last Time Out
Calgary Flames 3 Winnipeg Jets 2 (SO)
Edmonton Oilers 2 Vancouver Canucks 3
Players To Watch
Mike Smith (G)- The Flames goaltending position has been somewhat of a lightning rod this preseason as neither Smith, nor Eddie Lack has really inspired a ton of confidence in the fan base. Smith gave up 11 goals in 4 preseason games and was the better of the two, earning the win in Calgary’s last preseason game. Smith could gain a lot by coming out and stifling the Oilers in their own building on opening night. Smith is 13-3-1 in his last 17 against the Oilers.
Connor McDavid (C)- It’s the easy choice, but it’s the right choice. McDavid has TORCHED the Flames since coming into the league. As if this rivalry needed any more fuel, Connor McDavid has proved to be the perfect foil for the Flames. In 10 career games against the Flames he has 10 points. 7 of those 10 came in last season’s 4 contests, including a 2 goal, 1 assist game in the season opener.