A huge series could potentially come to an end in the NHL Stanley Cup second round as the Calgary Flames meet the Edmonton Oilers in Game 5 of their best of seven series.
The series is currently sitting at 3-1 to Edmonton, who have come back after losing an incredible opening game to win the last three and sit on the brink of eliminating Calgary.
We’ll look ahead to game 5 and break down the match-up before giving you our best free betting picks to see if we can earn you some extra cash for the weekend.
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What a crazy series it has been so far, with an incredible 36 goals scored across the four games played so far.
In game 1 it was the Flames who came out on top in an amazing 9-6 win, scoring three goals in each of the three periods to provide a steady threat and dominate the entire game.
Matthew Tkachuk (3), Blake Coleman (2), Rasmus Andersson, Andrew Mangiapane, Elias Lindholm and Brett Ritchie were all on the scoresheet for the home side as they blew the Oilers out of the water, despite goals from Zach Hyman (2), Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Kailer Yamamoto and Evan Bouchard.
Game 2 was exciting too, but this time it was the visitors who were able to find the net consistently and claim the win in regular time with a 5-3 scoreline.
Draisaitl, McDavid, Hyman, Bouchard and Duncan Keith all scored one each to earn the victory as Ritchie, Michael Stone and Tyler Toffoli couldn’t reproduce the performance of the previous game.
Game 3 was more settled and less intense, but there were still plenty of goals as the Oilers claimed a dominant 4-1 win at Rogers Place to take the lead in the series.
Three goals from Evander Kane and then one from Hyman made it 4-0 heading into the third and final period, where Oliver Kylington was able to get a consolation goal for the visiting fans to celebrate, if nothing else.
Last time out in Game 4 was another thriller, as the Oilers overcame a poor middle period to claim a 5-3 win once again and take a commanding lead in the series.
Kane got two more for his tally in the series, while Ryan Nugent-Hopkins got two of his own, and Hyman added yet another to his own score during the game. The Flames did their best to come back with goals from Andersson, Lindholm and Mikael Backlund but they were never able to get into a lead throughout the game.
The Flames have been excellent favorites during the course of this season, with a 50-29 record when entering as favorites on the moneyline this season, and holding a 41-18 record when their odds have been -143 or shorter.
They’ve also been one of the most complete performing sides in the entire NHL this season, as their regular season averages show.
Calgary have averaged 3.55 goals per game this season, ranking them sixth across the entire NHL, while they also managed 35.4 shots per game to rank them as the third most prolific team in the NHL.
Defensively they’ve been even better, allowing just 2.52 goals per game for the third-best defense in the league while they only allow on average 28.9 shots per game to give them the fifth-best defense in the NHL.
Over the last ten games, they have a record of 4-6. They have scored 30 goals for an average of 3.0 goals per game during that run, while they have conceded 34 goals for an average of 3.4 goals per game.
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The Oilers have only entered the rink as underdogs on 29 occasions this season in the NHL, but they’ve managed upsets on 11 of those occasions.
Their averages for the season have got them as a rather average team, which is odd considering how good they have been in this series so far.
They have averaged 3.48 goals per game this season, ranking them in 7th across the entire NHL, while their accuracy is shown by the fact they’ve managed just 33.9 shots per game this season to rank them in 10th across the league.
Defensively they’ve been wide open though, allowing 3.06 goals per game for a ranking of 17th across the NHL, while they allow an average of 32.2 shots per game which sees them as the 20th-ranked defense.
In their last ten games though, they’ve shown real quality with a 7-3 record. They’ve managed to score an impressive 44 goals in that period for an average of 4.4 goals per game, while defensively, they have only allowed 29 for an average of 2.9 goals per game.
Going off the regular season, this should have been a relatively easy series for the Flames to navigate to make it to the Western Conference finals.
They now find themselves in a position, however where they need to win or they go home, against a team that is on fire and seems to have their number.
Recent results show the Oilers as favorites but I expect home advantage to have a big say on the result, however, the safest bet is comfortably the overs of 6.5 because there will be a lot of goals in this game once again as that is where both side’s strengths lie.
Check out the best odds available on Bovada sports betting here.