Game 1 Blackhawks vs. Oilers Prediction: Stanley Cup Qualifier Odds

Isaac Eliape | Thu. Jul 30 2020, 10:07 am

Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, Edmonton Oilers, 2020

The Oilers come in with a great chance to make a long playoff run, led by the top two scorers in the league, and also boast the best power play in the NHL at 29.5 percent.

Chicago
32-30-4-4
AT
August 01, 2020, 3:00 PM ET
Rogers Place
Edmonton
37-25-7-2
Puckline +1.5 -170
Moneyline +135
Over / Under o +6

14%

Betting Action

86%

Puckline -1.5 +142
Moneyline -160
Over / Under u +6

14%

Betting Action

86%

Both teams are looking to punch their ticket to the playoffs for the first time since 2017.  It is a young, high-flying offense in Edmonton versus a veteran Chicago dynasty.

Game one of the Stanley Cup qualifiers best-of-five series between the Chicago Blackhawks and Edmonton Oilers is set for Saturday at 3 p.m. ET at Rogers Place in Edmonton.

Blackhawks vs. Oilers NHL Playoff Odds

These teams were pretty even in the season series with the edge going to Chicago, who won two of the three meetings by a combined score of 10-9.  Leon Draisaitl led the Oilers with seven points (2G, 5A), while Patrick Kane was the Hawks leader with four points (2G, 2A).  Mike Smith started all three games for the Oilers (one win, two losses).  Chicago relied on Corey Crawford in both wins, while the since-traded Robin Lehner was in net for the one loss.

It is tough to say if the Oilers will have any home ice advantage, but the over is 4-0 in the Oilers last four playoff games as the favourite and Chicago’s last four games against a Pacific Division opponent.  The over is 8-2 in the last 10 meetings between these teams.

Chicago Blackhawks

There is no telling how much danger this veteran Chicago team will be, with essentially an entire off season of rest.  Jonathan Toews, Patrick Kane, Duncan Keith, Corey Crawford and Brandon Saad all have multiple Stanley Cups with Chicago.  That is veteran experience that cannot be overlooked against an Oilers team that is untested in what is essentially a playoff series.

Kane led all Hawks players with 84-points (33G, 51A) in 70 games this season and has 123-points in 127 career playoff games.  Players like Calder finalist Dominik Kubalik, who led all rookies with 30 goals in 68 games, and Kirby Dach (23-points in 68 games), who has reportedly been impressive in camp, will be essential to providing secondary scoring.  The biggest question mark that remains is if Corey Crawford will be fit enough to play after recovering from Covid-19 or if the Hawks will turn to Malcolm Subban.  Either way, slowing down the Oilers high-powered offense will be key for Chicago to have a chance in this game and series.

Edmonton Oilers

The Oilers come in with a great chance to make a long playoff run, led by the two leading scorers in the league this season, Art Ross winner Leon Draisaitl (110 points in 71 games) and Connor McDavid (97 points in 64 games).  The Oilers also boast the best power play in the NHL at 29.5 percent and the second best penalty kill at 84.4 percent.

Edmonton has relied on the tandem of Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen all year, but Koskinen has no playoff experience so Smith will likely get the start.  Tyler Ennis, who was acquired in a trade with Ottawa in February, could be a difference maker as he is smart, efficient and versatile.  He will most likely slot in as Draisaitl’s leftwing or lead the third line at centre.  The offense will not be a worry for the Oilers so if they can lock down defensively, they should have a good shot to win this game and series.

NHL Prediction: Who Will Win Blackhawks vs. Oilers?

SportsInteraction