Edmonton Oilers: Analyzing the Calgary Flames Loss

CALGARY, AB - MARCH 13: Sam Bennett
CALGARY, AB - MARCH 13: Sam Bennett /

The Edmonton Oilers lost 1-0 to the Calgary Flames last night. It was the first time this season that the Flames got a win over their provincial rival.

With a three-game winning streak on the line, the Edmonton Oilers renewed their provincial rivalry against the Calgary Flames last night. Playing playoff spoiler, the Oilers embraced a new role since the trade deadline a few weeks ago.

The last time these two teams faced off, the Oilers won the game in a shootout right before the All-Star Weekend. Things have changed for both sides since that game has passed, especially with the Oilers losing a lot of games during February.

It was a big game and win for the Calgary Flames as they are a few points away from getting that wild-card playoff spot. With the number of games remaining on their schedule, it’s safe to assume that this was a game that they couldn’t lose.


That’s why it was disappointing that the Oilers couldn’t duplicate the performance they had against the Minnesota Wild on Saturday. They had about 28 shots on net, and some of those opportunities could have tied the game. The Zack Kassian overturned goal in the first period shouldn’t have been the only chance the Oilers had in all three periods.

Mike Smith of the Calgary Flames was a monster on the net which the Edmonton Oilers had no answer. There was at least about six scoring chances that the Oilers had that Smith had no business stopping those shots. But he transformed into the 2018 version of Martin Brodeur and was aiming to shut out the Oilers.

One thing that the Edmonton Oilers will need to do moving forward is to maintain their aggressiveness on both ends of the ice. It’s been the hallmark of this team’s success in this recent winning streak. Not giving up silly goals in the first period or causing stupid penalty infractions have been mistakes that the Oilers have eliminated for the time being.


They’ll need to maintain their physicality, just ask the Minnesota Wild with the 43 hits they dished out on Saturday. They only had 16 hits against the Flames, which was a 180 degree reverse from their last win against the Wild. If the Oilers keep at their forechecking game, it will create a lot of scoring chances right away.

The lineup experiment that the Edmonton Oilers have been playing around with must continue for the success of this team’s future. We’ve already had a glimpse of how well Connor McDavid and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins have been playing together on the first line.

Having guys like Pontus Aberg perform with the top lines will give the fans and management an idea if these types of players will be on the roster for next season. A lot of the call-ups that the Oilers have made recently seem to indicate that the next few weeks will be auditioning games for the entire team.

Let’s just hope that the Oilers win most of those games instead of tanking for a draft pick.