Here’s Your Black Friday Hockey Deal: Recharged Oilers Win At Ducks

Matthew Jordan

Thursday, November 22, 2018 3:30 PM UTC

Thursday, Nov. 22, 2018 3:30 PM UTC

The Edmonton Oilers are unbeaten under Coach Ken Hitchcock! Can they make it two straight on Friday afternoon when visiting the division-rival Ducks?

Edmonton (10-10-1) at Anaheim (9-9-5)Friday, 4 p.m. ETFree NHL Pick: Oilers MLBest Line Offered: Bovada

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It’s the busiest Friday of the season around the NHL – or at least tied for such with all but one of the league’s teams in action after no games on Thanksgiving. There are a handful of matinees on Black Friday and that’s the case in Anaheim as the Ducks welcome the Edmonton Oilers.

There has been an epidemic of head coach firings in the NHL this year – four already after not a single coach was fired during the 2017-18 season. The LA Kings went first with John Stevens and they haven’t been much better since. The Chicago Blackhawks also haven’t improved appreciably since dumping Joel Quenneville. On Monday, the St. Louis Blues fired Mike Yeo so too early to tell there.

On Tuesday, the disappointing Oilers fired Todd McLellan and replaced him with Ken Hitchcock – Hitchcock is a fine coach but why wouldn’t they hire the mega-successful Quenneville? Then again, Hitchcock is an Edmonton native who owns the third-most wins in NHL history and won the Stanley Cup with the Dallas Stars in 1999. Only four coaches have worked more than Hitchcock’s 1,537 games behind an NHL bench.

The Oilers job is a plumb one with all that talent, led by the NHL’s best player in Connor McDavid. Entering Tuesday, Edmonton had lost six of seven to fall under .500, but it won 4-3 in overtime at San Jose in Hitchcock’s debut. Leon Draisaitl scored 51 seconds into OT and McDavid had his 13th goal of the year and 100th career in his 230th game. Only Wayne Gretzky (145 games), Glenn Anderson (183) and Jari Kurri (214) got there faster for the Oilers.

The Oilers overcame three different deficits. Mikko Koskinen allowed three goals on 25 shots and appears to have at worst earned a timeshare with Cam Talbot if not taken the No. 1 job outright. Koskinen is 5-2-0 with a 2.65 GAA and .913 SV, while Talbot is 5-8-1 with a 3.31 GAA and .888 SV. Seems pretty evident who should be the main guy.

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Drai's delectable dish deserved a reward & he got it just seconds later with the #Oilers overtime winner! #LetsGoOilers @EASPORTSNHL pic.twitter.com/OBNKmGvAMN

— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) November 21, 2018
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Ducks Thin On Blueline

Somehow, this is the first meeting of the season between the Pacific Division-rival Oilers and Ducks. Last year, they split two games with each netting a road and home victory. McDavid had eight points, seven of them assists. Talbot was 1-1-1 with a 2.91 GAA and .915 SV. Corey Perry and Ryan Getzlaf led the Ducks with six points each. Perry has yet to play this season and won’t for a long while due to knee surgery. John Gibson was 2-0-1 with a 2.27 GAA and .929 SV.

Anaheim has been hammered by injuries this season and is without its two top blueliners in Cam Fowler (facial fracture) and Hampus Lindholm (lower-body injury).

The Ducks stopped a three-game skid with a 4-3 home win over skidding Vancouver on Wednesday. Getzlaf was the No. 1 star with a goal and assist. Kalie Kossila’s first goal of the year at 10:53 of the third proved to be the winner. Gibson allowed three goals on 28 shots to improve to 7-7-4 with a 2.58 GAA and .927 SV. It was Gibson’s 100th career win (fourth Ducks netminder to win 100 games).

  • Ducks are 3-8 in their last 11 vs. Western Conference.
  • Ducks are 3-14 in their last 17 games playing on 1 day of rest.

We think the Oilers will build off that terrific win on Tuesday, plus they are on an extra day of rest. Anaheim, meanwhile, hasn’t won back-to-back games since mid-October. Take Edmonton on the money line for a Friday NHL pick.

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