Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Free Preview

Jose VasquezArticles, Hockey, NHL

Two teams on winning streaks, the Montreal Canadiens and the Edmonton Oilers collide at Rogers Place in an East-West tilt. The game gets underway at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, December 23 and it’s being shown live on Sportsnet.

Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Odds

The Oilers are 16-19 straight up (SU) and have recorded -6.8 units for moneyline bettors thus far. That early-season winning percentage is a big slide from what the team managed during last years regular season (47-35). Of its 35 games this season, 17 have gone over the total, while another 17 have gone under and just one has pushed. The team is 7-10 SU at home this season.

Edmonton’s converted on just 16.3 percent of its power play opportunities this year, a mark that’s ranked 25th overall in the NHL. On the other hand, its penalty kill is ranked 30th overall, and it’s successfully killed off 73.2 percent of all penalties.

As a collective unit, Edmonton has been penalized 4.1 times per game overall this season, and 3.2 per game over its last five at home. The team has had to defend opposition power plays for just 8.4 minutes per game over its last 10 matchups, overall.

Averaging 26.0 saves per game with a .905 save percentage, Cam Talbot (13-12-1) has been the top option in goal for the Oilers this year. If they, however, decide to give him a breather, head coach Todd Mclellan could roll with Laurent Brossoit (3-10-10 record, .886 save percentage, 3.22 goals against average).

The Oilers will continue to rely on leadership out of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. McDavid (41 points) has produced 13 goals and 28 assists and has recorded multiple points on 10 different occasions this year. Draisaitl has eight goals and 18 assists to his credit and has recorded at least one point in 17 games.

Over on the other bench, Montreal is 16-19 straight up (SU) and has lost 8.1 units for bettors taking the moneyline this year. Through 35 regular season matches, 16 of its games have gone over the total, while another 16 have gone under and just two have pushed. Montreal’s 7-9 SU as the away team this season.

Montreal has converted on 18.5 percent of its power play chances this year, a mark that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 26th overall and it’s successfully defended 77.4 percent of all opponent power plays.

Montreal’s skaters have been penalized 3.9 times per game in total this season, 3.4 per game over their last five games total, and 3.8 per game over their last five road outings. The teams had to defend opponent power plays just 7.3 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.

Carey Price (.904 save percentage and 3.04 goals against average) has been the main option in goal for Montreal. Price is averaging 26.9 saves per game and has 11 wins, 12 losses, and two OT losses to his credit.

Phillip Danault (seven goals, 14 assists) has been one of the top facilitators on offense for the visiting Canadiens.

Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Betting Predictions

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

Betting Notes

  • The total has gone under in three of Edmonton’s last five games.
  • Two teams that attempt a heavy amount of shots on goal, Montreal has taken the leagues seventh-most shots on goal (33.9) while Edmonton has attempted the fourth-most (34.6).
  • The Canadiens are 5-9 SU in games where they serve more penalty minutes than their opponent while the Oilers are 7-10 SU when they serve more minutes than their opponent.
  • Edmonton has forced 8.4 takeaways per game over its last five home games, right in line with its season average of 8.2 takeaways per game (ranked 9th overall).
  • Montreal skaters have created 6.2 takeaways per game over its last five road games, right in line with its season average of 6.0 takeaways per game (ranked 26th in the NHL).