What’s probably surprising about the latest edition of the
“Battle of Alberta” is that both the Calgary Flames and Edmonton
Oilers enter it off victories.
One of the Western Conference’s worst teams will make it two
straight Friday night when the Flames try to hand the Oilers a
fifth straight road defeat.
Both teams entered a three-day holiday break by ending losing
Edmonton (12-24-3) snapped a season-high six-game slide with a
6-2 home win over Winnipeg that came on the heels of a 6-0 loss to
St. Louis two days earlier that prompted a lengthy post-game team
meeting. Taylor Hall had a goal and two assists.
”Overall, it was a way better game than we had against St.
Louis,” Hall said. ”We had a way better start and we seemed to
carry that over into the rest of the game.
”That’s been our Kryptonite. It seems to be when we get a good
start and they get a goal or they tie it up and we kind of get off
the rails, but that wasn’t the case tonight, we just kept it
The Oilers also ended a 0-for-14 slide on the power play by
converting 2 of 8 chances, as Hall and Jordan Eberle tallied.
Calgary (14-17-6) ended a 0-2-2 stretch by rallying for a 4-3
shootout win over the Blues. The Flames trailed 3-1 entering the
third period before Michael Cammalleri halved the deficit before
Mark Giordano’s tying goal on the power play with five seconds left
“I felt like we were on a three-game losing streak and I said
that we deserve better, you guys deserve better,” coach Bob Hartley
There’s been plenty of drama in the first two games of this
classic provincial rivalry.
Edmonton rallied from a two-goal deficit entering the third
period for a 4-2 road victory Nov. 16. Hall scored the tying goal
with 11 seconds to go in regulation Dec. 7 before the visiting
Flames prevailed 2-1 on Jiri Hudler’s goal in overtime.
This contest pits the West’s worst defenses, with Calgary
yielding 3.14 goals per game to rank only ahead of Edmonton’s 3.44
It’s a rivalry in which the Calgary-born Hall has amassed 13
points in his last eight games against the Flames.
Calgary has not announced an update on center Matt Stajan, who
left Monday’s contest after a knee-on-knee collision with David
Backes. Winger Curtis Glencross (high ankle sprain) and defenseman
Kris Russell (sprained knee) are both out. Russell is second on the
team in ice time at 23:39 per game.
The Oilers are beginning a set of back-to-back games as they
host Philadelphia on Saturday. Devan Dubnyk is expected to start
this contest, and he’s 5-1-1 with a 1.86 goals-against average in
his last seven starts against Calgary.
Reto Berra made 32 saves Monday for the Flames. He posted a 1.97
GAA while starting both meetings against Edmonton.