Edmonton Oilers vs. Montreal Canadiens Matchup Preview

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Two teams that split their head-to-head series (one win apiece) a year ago, the Edmonton Oilers and the Montreal Canadiens meet at Bell Centre in a cross-country tilt. The match gets underway at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, December 9 and it is being shown live on Sportsnet.

Edmonton Oilers vs. Montreal Canadiens Odds

Edmonton (+135) is currently the underdog to Montreal (-155), and the Over/Under (O/U) has been set at 6 goals (-120 for the over, +100 for the under). Losing 7.3 units for moneyline bettors, Montreal is 13-17 straight up (SU) overall in the 2017-18 season. That early-season winning percentage is a big slide from what the team managed during the 2016-17 season (47-35). Through 30 regular season matches, 14 of the teams games have gone over the total, while another 14 have gone under and just two have pushed. The teams 8-9 SU at home this year. The Canadiens have converted on 17.5 percent of their power play opportunities this year, a figure that’s right around league average. On the other hand, their penalty kill is ranked 21st overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 78.8 percent of all penalties. As a team, the Canadiens have been penalized 4.0 times per game overall this season, 3.6 per game over their past five contests total, and 3.8 per game over their last five at home. The team has had to kill penalties for just 8.7 minutes per game over their last 10 matchups, overall. Averaging 27.1 saves per game with a .904 save percentage, Carey Price (8-10-2) has been the primary goalkeeper for Montreal this season. If head coach Claude Julien decides to give him the night off, however, Montreal may turn to Charlie Lindgren (3-5-5 record, .924 save percentage, 2.43 goals against average). The Habs will continue looking for leadership out of Brendan Gallagher and Phillip Danault. Gallagher (19 points) has produced 13 goals and six assists and has recorded multiple points on four separate occasions this year. Danault has five goals and 12 assists to his name and has notched a point in 12 contests. Over on the other bench, Edmonton is 11-17 straight up (SU) and has lost 10.4 units for bettors taking the moneyline this year. A total of 14 of its contests have gone over the total, while 13 have gone under and just one has pushed. As the away team so far, the Oilers are 6-8 SU. The Oilers have converted on just 16.7 percent of their power play opportunities this season, a mark that’s ranked 24th in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 31st overall and it’s successfully defended 72.3 percent of all penalties. Edmonton’s players have been penalized 4.3 times per game in total this season, and 3.2 per game over their last five road outings. The team has been forced to defend opponent power plays just 7.8 minutes per game over their last five outings. Cam Talbot (25.8 saves per game) has been the primary option in goal for Edmonton. Talbot has 10 wins, 12 losses, and one OT loss to his credit, while registering a .903 save percentage and 3.00 goals against average this year. Connor McDavid (11 goals, 22 assists) has been one of the primary offensive facilitators for the visiting Oilers.

Edmonton Oilers at Montreal Canadiens Free Picks

Predictions: SU Winner – Canadiens, O/U – Over

Betting Trends

  • The total has gone over in three of Montreal’s last five games.
  • Two offenses that fire the puck toward the goal a lot, Edmonton has registered the leagues ninth-most shots on goal (34.0) and Montreal has attempted the fifth-most (34.4).
  • Over Edmonton’s last ten games, nine of them have been decided by two or more goals (the team is 3-6 in those games).
  • This game features two of the more aggressive teams in the league. Edmonton skaters have accounted for the leagues second-most hits per game (28.0) while the Habs have recorded the second-most (24.9).