FGD 18: The 245th Battle of Alberta (8pm MT, CBC/SN)

Photo credit:Candice Ward/USA Today Sports
Ryan Pike
1 year ago
On Friday, the Calgary Flames (8-8-1, 17 points)… were fine! They weren’t awful, but they weren’t the better team. They get a chance to rebound from being merely fine tonight when they face the Edmonton Oilers (11-8-0, 22 points) in a rematch of one of the more tame Battles of Alberta in recent memory.
The action starts at 8 p.m. MT on CBC and Sportsnet’s national feed and Sportsnet 960 The Fan!
For a view from the other side, check out OilersNation!

The Flames

Projected lines, via Daily Faceoff:
Tkachuk – Backlund – Mangiapane
Gaudreau – Lindholm – Leivo
Lucic – Bennett – Dube
Nordstrom – Gawdin – Robinson
Giordano – Andersson
Hanifin – Tanev
Valimaki – Nesterov
Update: Glenn Gawdin is making his NHL debut tonight. Changes from last night: Gawdin, Robinson and Nesterov in, Froese, Ritchie and Mackey out.
There’s no morning skate today, so we’re guessing a lot here based on last night’s lines. Jacob Markstrom starts, backed up by David Rittich. The projected active extras are Sean Monahan (injured) and Dominik Simon. The taxi squad is Artyom Zagidulin, Oliver Kylington, Michael Stone, Buddy Robinson, Zac Rinaldo and Glenn Gawdin.
This is the first game of a road trip that will last until March 1 and also include stops in Toronto (twice) and Ottawa (thrice). The Flames have crashed back to .500 and need to find a little more oomph than they had on Friday. The Oilers did a great job keeping the Flames to the outside, and the Flames need to find ways to disrupt Edmonton’s defensive scheme if they want two points.
And golly, they sure could use two points right now.

The Oilers

Projected lines, via Daily Faceoff:
Nugent-Hopkins – McDavid – Puljujarvi
Ennis – Draisaitl – Yamamoto
Kahun – Archibald – Khaira
Chiasson – Haas – Neal
Nurse – Barrie
Russell – Larsson
Koekkoek – Bouchard
Mikko Koskinen starts for the Oilers, backed up by Mike Smith. Their active extras are Kyle Turris, Caleb Jones and William Lagesson. Their taxi squad is Dylan Wells, Devin Shore, Patrick Russell and Joakim Nygard.
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl had zero points combined last night… and Edmonton won anyway, by virtue of goals by Jesse Puljujarvi and Gaetan Haas. It seems improbable that Edmonton’s big guns will remain quiet, so the Flames will probably try to open things up a bit.

The numbers

Points (%)17 (.500)22 (.579)
Adjusted Corsi For50.3%48.6%
Expected Goals52.4%50.8%
Power Play20.3%23.9%
Penalty Kill80.4%76.3%

The drive to 65

If you peruse most standings projections, it becomes apparent that 65 points probably gets you into the playoffs. That’s a 32-23-1 record, or thereabouts, or a .580 points percentage.
The Flames have an 8-8-1 record and 17 points. To hit 65 points, they need 48 points in their remaining 39 games – the equivalent of a .615 points percentage.

Unfit to play report

The Flames are without Derek Ryan and Sean Monahan.
The Oilers are without Kyle Turris, Zack Kassian, Ethan Bear and Oscar Klefbom.

When last we met

These teams have split two meetings thus far. Including tonight, they play eight more times.

Know thy enemy

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