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game preview

PREVIEW: Oilers vs. Flames

Wednesday, 08.06.2014 / 2:49 AM

Chris Wescott - edmontonoilers.com

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PREVIEW: Oilers vs. Flames
Calgary Flames vs. Edmonton Oilers


INSIDE THE OILERS

 

News and notes from Friday's Oilers practice at Russ Barnes Arena plus more.

>> READ MORE IN THE INSIDE THE OILERS BLOG

 

AT MORNING SKATE

 

EDMONTON, AB - Tonight the Edmonton Oilers host the Calgary Flames in the fifth and final game of this season’s Battle of Alberta series. So far, the teams have split the season series and the road team has won every game. The Oilers are looking to break that streak and earn the first home win of this seasons’ rivalry.

“I think the road team has won every game so far in this series,” Oilers winger David Perron said. “We’re going to look to have a really good game tonight and keep going with what we’ve got going in the last 15-20 games here and that’s playing with structure, playing the game the right way. Other than one period, I think in St. Louis, it’s been pretty good so we’ve just got to keep it going like that.”

EBERLE BACK IN ACTION

The Oilers will get a boost to their lineup tonight as Jordan Eberle returns from his one game hiatus, as he sat out against Buffalo on Thursday with a knee injury.

“Yeah, I feel good,” the winger said. “I’m ready to go. I think I just kind of tweaked the old injury from earlier on this year so it was good to take a couple of days off. I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have been able to play against Buffalo. There was a lot of pain and it probably would have hurt more. It was good to get a couple of days off and get it back to where I feel like I can play.”

Oilers Head Coach Dallas Eakins says the there was a noticeable hole in their lineup against Buffalo as Eberle’s absence was felt.

“Looks like Ebs will be able to play,” Eakins said. “You always find value with a player when he’s playing obviously but you fully understand the value of the player when you’re looking for him on the bench and he’s not there. I thought we missed Ebs last game and hopefully he has a good day, but we’re expecting him to play.”

KLEFBOM’S FIRST BATTLE OF ALBERTA

The Oilers have a rookie defenceman on their roster who’s ready to roll in his first Battle of Alberta game. Oscar Klefbom, 20, has played six games this season and has posted one assist, but he has yet to play in an atmosphere quite like Rexall Place on a Saturday night with Calgary in town.

“Very excited,” Klefbom said. “I remember I saw a game between Edmonton and Calgary and it was an amazing atmosphere. There’s a lot of history between these two teams so I’m just looking forward to play. It will be a really fun game to play I think. Absolutely, I like games with a lot of battles and stuff. There’s a lot of history and tough battles between those two teams. I’m just looking forward to play, it’s going to be fun.”

Klefbom is not the only player in the locker room excited about playing Calgary. All of the players get excited to play against their intra-provincial rivals.

“Anytime you play these guys there’s a lot of a rivalry, especially a Saturday night,” Eberle said. “There’s going to be a great crowd, a great atmosphere, I think people really get excited for these games as do we. These guys don’t like us, we don’t like playing them and anytime we play them, you want to beat them. You kind of find these games in the calendar much like other teams have other teams they play against.”

-- Chris Wescott, edmontonoilers.com

 

NHL.COM PREVIEW

 

FLAMES (28-35-7) at OILERS (25-37-9)

TV: CBC

Last 10: Calgary 5-5-0; Edmonton 5-3-2

Season series: It's the fifth and final edition of this season's Battle of Alberta. The Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers have split the first four games, with the road team winning all four.

Big story: The Stanley Cup Playoffs aren't coming to Alberta this spring, but that doesn't mean the Flames and Oilers don't have anything to play for. Each team is heavily invested in finding out which of its young players deserve more time in the final weeks of this season as well as in 2014-15.

Team Scope:

Flames: Calgary hasn't been a playoff contender for most of the season, but the Flames haven't stopped playing hard. They overcame deficits of 2-0, 3-1 and 4-3 against the Nashville Predators on Friday, then rallied again after giving up a pair of late goals but came up short in a 6-5 loss at Scotiabank Saddledome. Mike Cammalleri scored his second of the game with 2:24 left in regulation to make it a one-goal game, and the Flames had plenty of chances in the final 90 seconds after pulling goaltender Joey MacDonald for an extra attacker.

"Right to the end," Cammalleri said. "I thought we almost had one at the end there, too. It would have been nice. You can't expect to win games when you give up six, for sure."

Oilers: Edmonton could have used Jordan Eberle, one of its top forwards, on Thursday night when it lost 3-1 at Rexall Place to the last-place Buffalo Sabres. But Eberle, who sat out after tweaking his knee against Nashville on Tuesday, skated at practice Friday and could be ready to go. Coach Dallas Eakins would like to have his second-leading scorer back in the lineup but doesn't want to take any chances with a banged-up roster.

"It's good news that he's stayed throughout practice today," Eakins said following practice. "But we'll just have to see how that reacts but I think he would be first back in the door right now out of the group and I'm hopeful that our half a dozen guys that are hurting are still able to go tomorrow."

Who's hot: Cammalleri's two goals against Nashville gave him seven in the Flames' past six games. He has 10 points in that stretch. … Forward Taylor Hall has goals in back-to-back games for the Oilers and is tops with with 65 points.

Injury report: The Flames returned goaltender Joni Ortio to Abbotsford of the American Hockey League after the loss to Nashville, meaning that Karri Ramo (knee) is ready to return. Calgary is missing forwards Markus Granlund (shoulder) and David Jones (shoulder), as well as defenseman Dennis Wideman (upper body). … The Oilers could have Eberle (knee) and defenseman Anton Belov (oblique) back in the lineup after Belov was cleared Friday. Forwards Jesse Joensuu (high ankle sprain) and Nail Yakupov (ankle) are out.

-- Eric Goodman, NHL.com
2013-2014 season series
DateScoreW. Goal
Mar 22 '14CGY 8 at EDM 1M. Cammalleri
Mar 01 '14CGY 2 at EDM 1 - OTS. Monahan
Dec 27 '13EDM 2 at CGY 0R. Smyth
Dec 07 '13CGY 2 at EDM 1 - OTJ. Hudler
Nov 16 '13EDM 4 at CGY 2D. Perron
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
J. Hudler64153146+21621
M. Giordano53123143+115761
M. Backlund70182038+33253
M. Cammalleri54231437-182466
S. Monahan64191231-13622
M. Stajan55111627-124202
T. Brodie7142327+21812
K. Russell5752126-51331
J. Colborne6981523-123201
L. Stempniak5281523-212800
D. Wideman4641721-151820
C. Glencross2710818-51222
P. Byron4061218+101021
D. Jones489817+11021
L. Bouma6751015+03700
T. Galiardi5431215-141900
C. Butler7121214-203701
S. Baertschi262911-4610
L. Smid70257-117400
B. McGrattan65336-510000
K. Westgarth37224-35000
M. Granlund7213+2000
S. O'Brien45033-85800
B. Jones14202+02100
T. Wotherspoon9022-2400
M. Reinhart8022+1200
B. Hanowski8022-3200
L. MacDermid7022+11200
C. Billins2022-1000
T. Jackman10101-14100
C. Knight7101-1000
D. Smith14011-10200
B. Street13011-2400
C. Breen6000-3500
K. Agostino2000-1000
R. Horak1000+0000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
K. Ramo3012-10-4707712.60.909
R. Berra299-17-2817882.95.897
J. MacDonald94-4-1272263.16.881
J. Ortio94-4-0211932.51.891
PlayerGPGAP+/-PIMPPGW
T. Hall65244165-163651
J. Eberle70233154-141864
D. Perron68252550-117072
R. Nugent-Hopkins70163248-172064
S. Gagner5882533-253311
J. Schultz6491928-201412
A. Hemsky5591726-132021
N. Yakupov63111324-333641
R. Smyth62101323-143651
B. Gordon6681321-111611
M. Arcobello4141418-7811
A. Ference6921416-195900
J. Petry706915-163610
P. Larsen22268-3800
M. Hendricks67527-69101
R. Jones50246+04001
A. Belov48156-143200
J. Joensuu42325-161611
C. Potter16055+02100
L. Gazdic64224-812500
N. Schultz60044-112400
W. Acton23213-11400
M. Marincin34033+21400
T. Fedun4202-1000
M. Fraser33112-135800
L. Smid17112-61600
T. Pitlick5101-2000
A. Lander17011-3200
B. Eager7011+1200
D. Grebeshkov7011+0200
O. Klefbom7011-4000
M. Brown8000+11900
B. Hunt3000-3000
R. Horak2000-1000
R. Hamilton2000-2000
L. Omark1000-1000
GoalieGPRec.GASAGAASv%
B. Scrivens3313-12-4689542.29.929
D. Dubnyk3211-17-2948853.36.894
I. Bryzgalov205-8-5576223.01.908
V. Fasth94-3-2252302.87.891
J. LaBarbera71-3-0191463.28.870
R. Bachman30-2-17833.02.916