Two clubs that split their season series 1-1 last year, the Montreal Canadiens and the Edmonton Oilers take the ice at Rogers Place. CiTV will showcase this cross-country matchup, which gets going at 7 p.m. ET on Saturday, December 21.
Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Odds
Playing the role of favorite will be Montreal (-130), whereas Edmonton is an underdog showing moneyline odds of +110, and the Over/Under (O/U) is set at 6 goals (-125 over, +105 under).
Netting 0.7 units for moneyline bettors, Edmonton is 19-19 straight up (SU) overall this year. That winning percentage, ranked 2nd in the Pacific Division in this young season, is a welcome improvement over the 35-47 record from last year’s regular season campaign. Through 38 regular season matches, 19 of the team’s games have gone under the total, while 17 have gone over and just one has pushed. This season, the team’s 8-10 SU at home.
The Oilers come into the matchup with the second-strongest power-play unit in the NHL, as the team has found the net on 29.8 percent of their extra-man advantages this year. On the other hand, their penalty kill is ranked seventh overall, and they’ve successfully killed off 84.3 percent of all penalties.
As a collective unit, the Oilers have been penalized 3.5 times per game overall this season, and 2.6 per game over their last five home outings. The team has been forced to kill penalties for just 6.7 minutes per game over their last 10 matchups, overall.
Averaging 28.5 saves per game with a .919 save percentage, Mikko Koskinen (12 wins, 10 losses, and two OT losses) has been the top option in goal for Edmonton this season. If Edmonton chooses to give him the evening off, however, the team could turn to Mike Smith (7-12-12 record, .893 save percentage, 3.14 goals against average).
Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl will each lead the offensive attack for the Oilers. McDavid (59 points) has tallied 20 goals and 39 assists and has recorded two or more points 17 times this year. Draisaitl has 21 goals and 37 assists to his name and has recorded at least one point in 31 contests.
In the other locker room, Montreal is 17-18 straight up (SU) and has lost 5.3 units for moneyline bettors this year. 17 of its matches have gone over the total, while 16 have gone under the total and just two have pushed. The Canadiens are 9-7 SU as the away team this season.
The Canadiens have converted on 21.3 percent of their power play chances this year, a mark that’s right around league average. On the other hand, its penalty kill unit is ranked 28th overall and it’s successfully killed off 75.2 percent of all penalties.
Montreal’s skaters have been whistled for penalties only 3.2 times per game in total this season, and 2.6 per game over their last five on the road. The team’s had to stave off opponent power plays just 7.0 minutes per game over their last 10 outings.
Carey Price (27.3 saves per game) has been the primary choice in goal for Montreal. Price has 15 wins, 13 losses, and three OT losses to his credit, while registering a .907 save percentage and 2.84 goals against average this year.
Tomas Tatar (13 goals, 17 assists) and Shea Weber (11 goals, 18 assists) have been standout playmakers for Montreal and will lead the offensive attack for the visiting Canadiens.
Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Betting Picks
Free Prediction: SU Winner – Oilers, O/U – Over
Both teams are 2-1 in games decided by shootout.
Four of Montreal’s last five outings have gone under the total.
Montreal’s attempted 35.1 shots per contest overall this season (the most in the NHL), and 32.2 in its last five road games.
Four of Montreal’s last ten games have been decided by two goals or more. The team is 3-1 in those games.
Montreal skaters have given out the league’s fourth-most hits per game (28.0).