The Oilers aim to make it stick this time around as they visit the Sabres in Buffalo on Friday night. Edmonton is coming off an impressive 6-2 road drubbing of the Detroit Red Wings, while the Sabres saw their losing skid hit a season-high seven games with a 5-4 setback to the visiting Minnesota Wild.
The Oilers come in as slight road favourites despite their struggles – but that’s what happens when you face a team that has just five victories through its first 22 games. As mentioned earlier, momentum has been frustratingly elusive for Edmonton this season, as it has just one win in its previous nine games following a victory. But the Sabres can do one better, having dropped four consecutive home games while going 1-5 in its last six against West foes.
From a totals perspective, the Oilers have re-emerged as a solid over play, exceeding the total in four of their previous five games while going 4-1 O/U in their past five road contests. The Sabres have rewarded under bettors handsomely at KeyBank Center of late, going 1-6 O/U in their previous seven home games. And these teams have six unders and two pushes in their previous 10 meetings in Buffalo.
The key to the Oilers sustaining success hinges more on tight defense than it does on extended offensive prowess. Edmonton has allowed at least four goals in four of its last five games following a victory, highlighting the kind of defensive inconsistency that has the Oilers on the outside of the playoff race at the quarter point of the season. Edmonton enters Friday ranked 26th in the NHL in goals against per game (3.3).
Ranking second last in the NHL in scoring (2.4 goals per game) and defense (3.5 goals against per game) doesn’t leave a lot of room for optimism. But forward Evander Kane is doing his best to give Buffalo fans (and bettors) reason to believe, with six goals and three assists in 10 November games. The Sabres are a respectable 3-4-2 straight-up in games in which Kane scores, but have won just one of his four multi-point games.
Oilers vs Sabres Prediction