Chicago Blackhawks vs. Edmonton Oilers Pick & Prediction JANUARY 28th 2023

Stadium: Rogers Place Edmonton
Logo Chicago Blackhawks
Logo Edmonton Oilers

6.5o -118
-1.5 -171



The Edmonton Oilers received a good lesson if they tuned into what transpired when their next opponents, the Chicago Blackhawks, faced their Alberta rivals.

As his team prepared to play host to the Blackhawks on Saturday, coach Jay Woodcroft was able to remind his charges the Calgary Flames were not at their best against the Blackhawks and were humbled in a 5-1 loss to the last-place team in the Western Conference.

It is an important reminder for the Oilers in anticipation of their final game before the All-Star break.

"Their record over the last little while shows they can hurt you if you're not ready, and they can hurt you if you are ready for them," Woodcroft said of the Blackhawks. "They're a good team with good individual players. We have to be aware we have a game here before the break starts."

The Oilers will receive a boost with winger Evander Kane expected back after missing the last game.

Edmonton is coming off a disappointing home loss of its own. The Oilers saw their six-game winning streak snapped on Wednesday when they surrendered a 2-1 lead midway through the third period en route to a 3-2 overtime loss to the Columbus Blue Jackets.

The Oilers have a 7-1-2 record in their last 10 games, but know it was a wasted opportunity while pushing to solidify a playoff spot.

"It's always disappointing when you don't get two points, I think we let one slip away there," forward Derek Ryan said. "Credit to them. They played a good game and took advantage of their opportunities. ... That being said, I don't think we played our best."

The Blackhawks snapped a two-game skid with the Calgary victory, which came without veteran captain Jonathan Toews in the lineup due to a non-COVID illness.

It's been a difficult season for the Blackhawks, but they have won four of six and are 7-3-0 in their last 10 outings. Clobbering the Flames certainly is a boost for the team's collective confidence.

"We were all cohesive," center Jason Dickinson said. "We were all on the same page and working together. That's when we're at our best. If we can get all four lines and all six (defensemen) and the goalie playing composed and playing together, we're going to be a pretty good team."

Dickinson, Boris Katchouk and Sam Lafferty scored second-period goals for the Blackhawks to break open a tied game en route to a well-deserved win. The Flames pushed frantically for a third-period comeback that never came, but the Blackhawks can take full credit for controlling the first two periods to build a 4-1 lead. Chicago has led through two periods in only 11 games.

The capper came in the third period when rookie goaltender Jaxson Stauber stopped all 18 shots he faced. Stauber has won both of his starts with Alex Stalock out due to a concussion. The Blackhawks most likely will play Petr Mrazek in Edmonton, but Stauber's performance provides more confidence for a team hoping its prospects can turn into full-time NHL players.

"He looks really solid and calm in there," coach Luke Richardson said. ... "He just makes a save and even if there's some scrambling going on, he doesn't look scrambly."

--Field Level Media

Chicago Blackhawks
Edmonton Oilers

Chicago Blackhawks vs. Edmonton Oilers

Connor McDavid's first career playoff hat trick led the host Edmonton Oilers to a 6-3 victory over the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 2 of their Western Conference qualifying series on Monday.

The best-of-five series is tied 1-1. Game 3 is on Wednesday in Edmonton, with the Blackhawks as the designated home team.

After collecting a goal and two assists in Game 1, McDavid recorded another three-point performance with his first multi-goal game in the postseason.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins assisted on all three of McDavid's goals while Edmonton forward Alex Chiasson had a goal and an assist. James Neal and Tyler Ennis also scored for the Oilers.

Patrick Kane and Slater Koekkoek each had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks. Olli Maatta scored a goal, and Alex DeBrincat and Kirby Dach each had two assists.

McDavid scored just 19 seconds into the game, the second game in a row that Edmonton jumped out on top.

At 4:05 of the first period, McDavid delivered a spectacular solo effort for his next goal. The former Hart Trophy winner collected a pass near center ice and rushed toward the net, outmaneuvering Maatta and backhanding a shot past Corey Crawford.

The Blackhawks followed McDavid's highlight-reel goal with an impressive effort of their own five minutes later. DeBrincat sent a well-placed backhand pass from behind the net onto the stick of Kane, who buried the 51st postseason goal of his career.

Ennis scored 1:44 into the second period to extend the Oilers' lead to 3-1, but the Blackhawks equalized on goals from two unlikely scorers, defensemen Koekkoek and Maatta.

A fortunate bounce helped McDavid put Edmonton ahead for good at 17:10 of the second period. During an Oilers power play, McDavid's pass attempt through the zone deflected off Chicago's Duncan Keith at 17:10 and into the net.

Some strong forechecking from the Oilers deep in the Blackhawks' end led to goals from Neal and Chiasson within a 40-second span in the third period.

Oilers goaltender Mikko Koskinen stopped 23 of 26 shots to earn the victory in his first career postseason start.

Crawford stopped 29 of 35 shots in the Blackhawks' net.

--Field Level Media