We are BACK.
Well, that was quite the way to kick things off.
The Oilers travelled down the highway to Calgary for their pre-season opener and proceeded to absolutely spank the Flames. An Edmonton lineup that only featured a handful of surefire NHLers dominated the Flames, winning the game by a score of 4-0 and the Oilers outshot Calgary by a whopping 48-15.
Things worth mentioning…
- The Flames generated virtually nothing offensively on Sunday night, which is a testament to a well-played game by Edmonton’s blueline. The Oilers limited Calgary to just three high-danger chances all told at even-srength. This is especially encouraging because Edmonton’s blueline in this game was largely full of prospects, including Philip Broberg, Phil Kemp, Filip Berglund, and Evan Bouchard.
- One performance that really stood out was that of Bouchard, who wasn’t on the ice for a single high-danger chance by the Flames all night, according to Natural Stat Trick. Bouchard played a very calm and poised game, moving the puck up the ice with ease and operating very well in both the defensive and offensive zone. The Flames obviously looked totally listless in this game but they were completely outclassed whenever Bouchard was on the ice.
- Neither of Edmonton’s goalies were tested much but prospects Ilya Konovalov and Stuart Skinner combined to shut out the Flames, making seven and eight saves respectively. With Alex Stalock set to miss the 2021-22 season, both of these young goalies are in camp trying to prove themselves to potentially be the Oilers’ third-string goalie this year.
- Edmonton’s best forward line in the game was the Kyle Turris, Devin Shore, and Brendan Perlini trio, three players who are on the bubble looking for gigs. The Oilers outshot the Flames 8-1 at even-strength with these three on the ice as they played an effective game at both ends. Seeing Turris play an effective game on the wing was an encouraging sign. He wasn’t able to hack it last season as a centre but might be able to contribute this year in a different role. This is a very good start in that regard.
- Another bubble player who made a good first impression was Colton Sceviour, who’s in camp on a professional tryout. Playing on the left of Derek Ryan and rookie Xavier Bourgault, Scevious picked up a pair of assists and had two shots on goal. He also led the team in ice-time on the penalty kill. This aspect of his game will be key if he winds up cracking the team and earning a contract.
- Speaking of that line, 2021 first-round pick Bourgault scored his first goal as a pro on Sunday with a snipe from the face-off circle. It was said when he was drafted that Bourgault can score from just about anywhere with his quick shot and this one absolutely proved that point…
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) September 27, 2021
- Next up, the Oilers will host the Seattle Kraken for their first-ever meeting with the league’s newest club. The game will be at 7:00 PM on Tuesday and will again be streamed on the Oilers website.