The Edmonton Oils are one win away from achieving a playoff spot, while the Vancouver Canucks can actually use the miniseries sweep when they face off in Vancouver on Monday to close four straight meetings.
The Oilers (30-17-2, 62 points), coming off Saturday’s 4-1 victory in the Flames of Calgary, have won four of three games and have an outside shot at the North Division title , Which has nine digits sitting behind. The Toronto Maple Leafs with two games in hand and seven on the slate.
However, as they prepare to face the Canucks squad hoping to run a miracle, the Oilers are more concerned about properly preparing for the upcoming Stanley Cup Chase.
“We’ve really got to focus on what we’re doing,” coach Dave Tippett said. “You understand where Vancouver is and their position, but we are going to these games to make sure that we are moving our game forward.
“Our preparation is getting our team to play right now as well as we can get a playoff spot and go well into a series.”
After the Oil and Canucks (19–23–3, 41 points) meet on consecutive nights in Vancouver, they hit the ice for two more games in Edmonton on Thursday and Saturday.
Not only are the rollers a rookie, but captain Connor McDavid has 87 points in 49 outings and a shot to reach the 100-point mark – no small feat in a normal 82-game season, but a big one in a 56-game Achievement schedule.
McDavid goalkeeper Mike Smith said, “Nothing beats me being amazed with this kid.” “It is incredible how he continues to get better and better. It seems that when he closes one game, in the next game he helps to get out there and win the team.
The Canucks have a crushing schedule – 11 games in 17 days – to make for a three-week shutdown due to a COVID-19 outbreak that affected them. They are 14 points behind fourth-placed Montreal Canadiens with five more games to play.
The Canucks have lost all four streaks on the road to a 4-1 road loss on Saturday to the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Coach Travis Green said that you can tell how hard they are working that they want to win badly.
Unfortunately, the Canucks look like a team still affected by the virus. He was with the Maple Leafs for two times, but ran out of steam.
“We wanted to at least come away with a win on this road trip, and it’s disappointing,” said Captain Bo Horvat. “At the same time, we can’t focus on that and say we’re going to pack it. We’re still in the rink and ready to play these last 11 games and work hard . I mean, we’re not out of it until we mathematically get out of it, and as long as you still have a chance, we’re hard to come to the rink every single day and play. “
Soon after their hiatus, the Canucks won three of four games, but have since beaten every game.
“I’m not going to sit here and say this is a cakewalk, it’s easier since COVID,” Horwat said. “We’re not trying to make excuses here, but … obviously it takes a lot from you. … We have to find ways to try to win the game, whatever it may be.”