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Oilers Can Make History in Calgary

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Photo credit:Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports
Jason Gregor
1 month ago
The Edmonton Oilers can become the first team from the Western Conference to win 13 consecutive games. They would also be the first Canadian team to hit lucky number 13.
Last night, Edmonton tied the 1968 Montreal Canadiens for the longest winning streak by a Canadian team, 12 games, with their 4-2 victory over Seattle. Win tomorrow and they’ll join 11 other teams with at least 13 wins.
It has proven very difficult to win 13 games in a row, and thus far, impossible for a western-conference team. The Oilers could join that group with a victory on the road over their biggest rival, Calgary, tomorrow night.
I wonder how much travel plays a factor during lengthy winning streaks. Pacific division teams travel the most in the NHL, by a large margin.
TEAMKM TEAMKM 
SJ88090NYI55018
VAN87810NYR54786
SEA85390OTT54525
LA84667NJ54284
ANA84019CAR53769
EDM77325PHI53065
VGK75946WSH51515
FLA74851NSH49388
CGY74842MIN49120
ARI74657BUF48677
TB67891TOR48458
BOS60753STL47246
DAL58956PIT47192
COL58472CBJ46024
MTL57922DET45701
WPG57457CHI45598
The above numbers came courtesy of this spreadsheet from Reddit user mbstone. It is very close to accurate, and while it might be a few KMs off, it illustrates the difference in travel. It will vary a bit each year, based on the actual schedule, but teams on the West Coast will always travel quite a bit more. Travel and fatigue will be a factor in winning streaks, but not the only one.
You need to be good, bordering on dominant, team to get on this long of a heater.
  • The 1930 Bruins went 38-5-1 in the regular season and lost the Stanley Cup final.
  • The 1971 Bruins (57-14-7) finished first in the regular season and won Stanley.
  • The 1982 Islanders (54-16-10) finished 1st and hoisted the Cup.
  • The 1986 Flyers (53-23-4) finished 2nd in the NHL but lost in the first round.
  • The 1993 Penguins (56-21-7) were the two-time defending Cup champions, finished 1st overall, but were upset in the second round.
  • The 2001 Devils (48-21-9T-4OT) finished 3rd and lost in the Cup final.
  • The 2010 Capitals (54-15-13) finished 1st yet lost in seven games in the first round.
  • The 2013 Penguins (36-12, shortened season) finished 2nd and lost in the Conference finals.
  • The 2017 Blue Jackets (50-24-8) finished 4th overall and lost to Pittsburgh (who finished 2nd overall) in the opening round. Tough matchup.
  • The 2022 Panthers (58-18-6) won the President’s trophy and lost to Tampa in round two.
  • The 2023 Devils (52-22-8) finished 3rd in the league and lost in the 2nd round to Carolina (who was 2nd overall).
Only the 2001 Devils didn’t win 50+ games or were on pace (due to a shorter season) for 50+ wins, but the Devils led the NHL in scoring that year and were fourth in goals against. They were also an excellent team.
After a terrible 2-9-1 start, the Oilers have been a dominant team. They are 23-6 in their last 29 games. A victory tomorrow would give them 24 wins in a 30-game span — another feat only 19 teams have accomplished, at any point in a season, including seven teams that won 13+ games.
SeasonTeamGPWinsLossesTiesOTL
1929-30BOS3027210
1970-71BOS3025320
1981-82NYI3025230
2012-13PIT3025500
2016-17CBJ3025203
2021-22FLA3024501
2022-23CAR3024303
This isn’t just a 12-game heater for Edmonton. They’ve been killing it for the past eight weeks. They are 20-3 in their last 23 games.
On November 23rd the Oilers were 30th in the NHL in points with 11 and 30th in P% at .306%.
Today they are tied for 12th in points with 51 and are tied for ninth in % at .622P%.
The Oilers have the best record in the NHL since November 24th, despite playing the fewest games. Their P% illustrates how much better they’ve been over every team.
Edmonton has made massive gains on Vegas and LA. On November 23rd their records were:
  • Vegas: 14-4-2 for 30 points
  • Los Angeles: 11-3-3 for 25 points
  • Edmonton: 5-12-1 for 11 points
Since then:
  • Edmonton 20-3-0 for 40 points
  • Vegas: 12-10-3 for 27 points
  • LA: 10-10-5 for 25 points
Edmonton gained 15 points on LA and 13 on Vegas while playing two fewer games.
Edmonton is in the midst of one of the best 30-game stretches in NHL history, and a victory in Calgary tomorrow would just add to this incredible run as they could do something no team in the Mountain or Pacific time zones has ever done: win 13 games in a row.

QUICK HITS…

  • The Oilers have eight comeback wins during this 12-game heater. They secured consecutive multi-goal comeback wins for the third time in the past 20 years during their wins over Toronto and Seattle.
  • The Oilers are 7-0 when allowing the first goal during this streak. They were 4-8 when allowing the first goal in their first 18 games.
  • Last night the Oilers tied their franchise record, set in 2002, with 10 consecutive games allowing two or fewer goals.
  • Leon Draisaitl produced his 25th four-point game of his career last night. That ties him with Glenn Anderson for fifth on the Oilers, behind Mark Messier (27), Connor McDavid (35), Jari Kurri (45) and Wayne Gretzky (158). Draisaitl is also fifth among active skaters trailing Sidney Crosby (38), McDavid (35), Alex Ovechkin (32) and Evgeni Malkin (29).
  • Kris Knoblauch became the fifth coach in NHL history with a 12+ game winning streak in his first season with the team. He joins Tom Johnson (13 GP in 1970-71 with BOS), Andrew Brunette (13 in 2021-22 w/FLA), Bob Hartley (12 in 1998-99 w/COL) and Bruce Boudreau (12 in 2016-17 w/MIN). Johnson, Brunette and Hartley were also rookie head coaches.
  • Connor McDavid just had his second 12-game point streak in his last 25 games. That is not a typo. He had a 12-game point streak, then was pointless on December 19th @NYI, and now is on another 12-game point streak. But the streaks have been very different.
  • From November 20th to December 16th, McDavid produced 7-21-28 (2.33 points/game) and the Oilers went 8-4. From December 21st to today, McDavid has scored 5-13-18 (1.5 points/game) and the Oilers are 12-0. In his first 12-game streak, he had nine multi-point games, and in four of them, he had 3+ points. During this current streak, he’s only had three multi-point games. He had five points v. the Flyers and two-point games v. LA and New Jersey. Edmonton is winning with stifling defence and balanced scoring.
  • The Oilers allowed 36 goals during McDavid’s first 12-game point streak, but they’ve only allowed 21 goals during their recent streak. It’s a great sign that they are learning how to play sound defensively.

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