The playoff-hungry Calgary Flames get a break on Saturday, as the Edmonton Oilers will try to play spoiler against them without Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
“RNH” is out with a lower-body injury. The bad side of that is a top line gets a new wrinkle, however, as Taylor Hall slides between Benoit Pouliot and Jordan Eberle according to Fan 960’s Derek Wills.
No Nugent-Hopkins seems like a positive on paper for the Flames, but what if that little change of pace gives Edmonton a little boost? This is a wacky time of year, after all.
The Philadelphia Flyers and Edmonton Oilers, two teams outside the playoff picture, apparently weren’t too caught up on defensive details Saturday.
The Flyers, with Ray Emery in net for a surprise start, jumped out to a 3-1 lead in the first period, only to cough it up. The Oilers allowed three straight goals after grabbing an early lead. It was back-and-forth with plenty of chances.
And both teams were able to capitalize off odd-man rushes, taking advantage of the opposing team’s mistakes.
First, Jordan Eberle’s goal, his 20th of the season, which gave Edmonton a 4-3 lead early in the second period. Nice pass from Benoit Pouliot, and even better finish.
Now, here’s a look at a sweet passing play from unlikely candidates Ryan White and Zac Rinaldo. White finishes the playoff, giving Philadelphia a 3-1 lead late in the first period.
Thursday’s contest between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Edmonton Oilers looked like a mismatch before the puck was even dropped and nothing Edmonton did in the first 30 minutes of play suggested otherwise. Edmonton nearly pulled off an incredible comeback though before ultimately suffering a 6-4 loss.
Brandon Sutter gave Pittsburgh plenty of breathing room early on with a shorthanded marker just 4:16 minutes into the game and his 15th goal of the season a little over five minutes later.
Pittsburgh continued to pick on Oilers goaltender Ben Scrivens with David Perron and Sidney Crosby each finding the back of the net to chase the netminder out of the contest just 1:01 minutes into the second frame. With a 4-0 edge, the Penguins’ victory against the lowly Oilers seemed assured, but Edmonton chipped away at that lead until Derek Roy evened the score at 10:04 of the third period.
The Oilers’ efforts didn’t end up providing them with a point though as just over four minutes later Steve Downie scored what proved to be the game-winner.
“It showed a lot, coming back down 4-0 in a town like Pittsburgh… It’s frustrating (we couldn’t win it),” Edmonton’s Benoit Pouliot said, per the team’s Twitter feed.
Pittsburgh has now won three of its last four games as it battles for the Metropolitan Division title. Meanwhile, Edmonton remains locked in 29th place in the league with its sixth straight defeat.