2022 NHL Stanley Cup Playoffs Preview, Round 2
Calgary Flames 50-21-11 (111 pts - First in the Pacific) vs Edmonton Oilers 49-27-6 (104 pts - Second in the Pacific)
Game 1 - Wednesday, May 18th - 7:30 PM MT - SN, CBC, ESPN
Game 2 - Friday, May 20th - 8:30 PM MT - SN, CBC, ESPN
Game 3 - Sunday, May 22nd - 7:30 PM MT - SN, CBC, ESPN2
Game 4 - Tuesday, May 24th - 7:30 PM MT - SN, CBC, ESPN
Game 5 (if needed) - Thursday, May 26th - TBD
Game 6 (if needed) - Saturday, May 28th - TBD
Game 7 (if needed) - Monday, May 30th - TBD
Well... The matchup we've been waiting for many many years is finally here. The Flames and the Oilers meet in the playoffs for the first time since 1991. This is a highly anticipated bout between the two sides of the Battle of Alberta, as both are looking to make a deep run in the playoffs and potentially bring home the Stanley Cup. The Flames took down the Stars in 7 Games on Sunday and the Oilers did it a day before, taking down the Kings in 7 Games as well.
We’re in store for intense and high paced battle between two bitter rivals. The province is buzzing and rightfully so. The Flames do have the better goaltending and defence but the Offence on both sides could end in a tie. The Oilers have the two of the best players in the world - Draisaitl and McDavid. But so do the Flames, with Gaudreau and Tkachuk. All four of these players were top 10 in league scoring and were key pieces in leading their respective teams into the playoffs.
In order for the Flames to take down Edmonton, they need to shut down McDavid and Draisaitl. It goes without saying that the Powerplay needs to face the same fate. The Flames do know the tendencies of Mike Smith who is a former Flame. They need to do their thing with him and just hope they don’t face someone like Jake Oettinger in the playoffs again. The team needs to ramp up their play on the Powerplay and get some guys going. All-in-all this series will go down the stretch to at least 6-7 games. It’ll be tight and high paced playoff hockey and something we should expect in a series like this. But all things aside… Flames in 6.
Matchups This Season
The Flames and Oilers split their season series and finished off the year 2-2. Both sides had some big games in the season series and some of them were tight as well. These games from the regular season won't mean much, but are somewhat of an indicator as to what some of these games might look like. So here are the matchups between these two teams this season:
October 16th, 2021: Oilers win 5-2
January 22nd, 2022: Oilers 5-3
March 7th, 2022: Flames 3-1
March 26th, 2022: Flames 9-5
Last time these two teams met in the Playoffs
The last time these two teams met in the playoffs was in 1991. The series went to 7 games, in which the Oilers choked a 3-1 lead but shut down the Flames in Game 7 to win the series.
An iconic game from this series is Game 6. It went to OT and a budding star for the Flames got the winner and ended it off with a celebration that is still talked about till this day. The small man Theo Fleury was the guy.
The Flames leading goal scorers were Theo Fleury and Gary Suter who finished with 7 points each and the Oilers leading goal scorer was Esa Tikkanen with 10 points. Tikkanen was a major X factor for the Oilers and a big reason as to why they closed out Game 7 despite being down 3-0 at one point.
If this means anything… it should show that no matter what happens in this series it will be etched into the history books one way or another.
Playoff Stat Leaders
Points: 8 (Johnny Gaudreau)
Goals: 3 (Tied - Elias Lindholm and Mikael Backlund)
Assists: 6 (Johnny Gaudreau)
Save Percentage: .943 SV% (Jacob Markstrom)
Goals Against Average: 1.53 GAA (Jacob Markstrom)
Points: 14 (Connor McDavid)
Goals: 7 (Evander Kane)
Assists: 10 (Connor McDavid)
Save Percentage: .938 SV% (Mike Smith)
Goals Against Average: 2.29 GAA (Mike Smith)
Players to Watch
Johnny Gaudreau and Matthew Tkachuk. Johnny Hockey showed that he’s a playoff performer in the Flames’ first round playoff series against the Stars. Notching 8 points in 7 games and a key Overtime winner in Game 7. Matthew Tkachuk was also decent in the series although some would’ve liked to see some more production from him in the series. These two are known to raise the bar in games against the Oilers and hopefully they can do the same in this playoff matchup.
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. This should go without saying that the Oilers wouldn’t be where they are without these two (and the same goes to the Flames with Gaudreau and Tkachuk). The two premiere players for the Oilers showed why they get paid the big bucks in their playoff series against the Kings. Connor McDavid finished the series with a monstrous 14 points and pretty much led the Oilers on his back through the 7 games. Leon Draisaitl was also another big piece in play for the Oilers in the series. He had 9 points and some of those were with an ankle sprain. His health is a question mark heading into tomorrows game and the rest of the series. In order for the Flames to win this series… they NEED to shut these two down.
Betting Odds Via Betway:
Odds to Win Game 1:
Oilers: +135 (Underdogs)
Flames: -160 (Favourites)