Three straight losses to the Edmonton Oilers and the Calgary Flames now face elimination in a Game 5 situation.
Eerily similar to the Colorado Avalanche series a few years ago, the Calgary Flames squandered a 1–0 series lead and now need to win three straight to advance.
Possible? Extremely. Probable? Less so.
The Calgary Flames may have played a better Game 4, but they are far from themselves. Coming back in this series would be one of the greatest moments in franchise history, lose and suffer the endless commentary from Oilers fans.
Time to show up.
Round 2, Game 5
Edmonton Oilers @ Calgary Flames
Based on how Darryl Sutter has deployed his lines this postseason, your guess is as good as ours.
Lineup has yet to be determined. The expectation is that the Oilers will keep the same lineup as Game 2, 3, and 4.
Series so far
The Flames still win the statistical battle, but their SV% somehow keeps dropping game by game. As a result, the team just can’t keep pucks out of their own net. The team surely didn’t expect Jacob Markstrom to collapse like this, but perhaps he is finally starting to show a bit of fatigue from his workload this season.
The Oilers on the other hand just continue to score on their opportunities at 5v5. They don’t have possession more often, they don’t have more scoring chances (neither regular nor high-danger), they just simply capitalize on almost all of them.
The Flames are playing, at least statistically, what we have expected from them all season. Somehow it’s just not translating to success. The Flames have a 0.930 PDO at 5v5, while the Oilers are at an astounding 1.070. Maybe its “luck”, but it’s hard to imagine the Flames rolling over tonight.
Players to watch
Edmonton: Leon Draisaitl
As is per usual with the way things go, Connor McDavid gets most of the spotlight in Edmonton. Leon Draisaitl on the other hand has 22 points this post season, and is just three behind McDavid for the NHL lead. He has three points in each of his last four games. The Flames have a two-headed beast to stop.
Calgary: Jacob Markstrom
Pretty plain and simple here. The Flames need Markstrom to be Vezina finalist Markstrom. They absolutely need him to steal a few games, but it starts with Game 5 now with the Flames’ backs against the wall.