The Edmonton Oilers played one of their best games of the season on Thursday night when they blanked the Montreal Canadiens 3-0. Tonight, the Oilers will return to the ice after three days off to take on the Winnipeg Jets. It’s a chance for the Oilers to create some real separation in the playoff race.
The Oilers will also be entering tonight’s tilt after three days off. They got a CBA-mandated off day on Friday, then skated on Saturday and Sunday. The Jets, meanwhile, suffered a heartbreaking loss on Saturday afternoon at the hands of the Ottawa Senators.
“You get a little bit of time for rest and a little bit of time for practice,” Coach Dave Tippett said Sunday. “The importance of every game can’t be overstated. The players, when they get a day of rest they have energy and you feel like you can have a good practice. It’s going to be a lot of fun and hard moving forward. Any time you can get practice and rest, I think that helps you prepare for the stretch that’s coming.”
This stretch will be a big one. The Oilers play host to the Jets tonight and on Wednesday night. On Friday night, they travel to Calgary to take on the Flames. On Saturday night? It’s right back to Edmonton for another date with the Flames. As things currently stand, it looks like only two of those three teams will make the 2021 Stanley Cup Playoffs.
Also as it stands, Edmonton has the most points of that group, but they’ve also played the most games. This stretch of four games is a golden opportunity for the Oilers to build a bit of a cushion as the NHL barrels towards its midway point.