We are just a few days into the 2021 NHL season and already the NHL’s North, all-Canadian division is filled with excitement and intensity.
Both Edmonton and the Montreal Canadiens enter Saturday evening’s contest likely feeling quite good about their respective games after recent results. For the Habs, they narrowly lost an overtime game to a talented Toronto Maple Leafs side – a match-up where for long stretches they were the better team.
Edmonton enters having recovered from a weak opening night defensive effort with a convincing victory over those same Vancouver Canucks one evening later. In that game, the Oilers tightened up without the puck, and Connor McDavid resoundingly reminded hockey fans over who hockey’s top talent is with a routine hat-trick.
In a condensed season, every game matters and as both of these teams project to be fighting intensely for one of the four playoff spots in the North Division, this January showdown certainly matters. For added insight and a betting prediction for Montreal vs. Edmonton, continue reading on beneath the posted odds for our take on this all-Canadian clash.
Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Betting Odds:
Montreal Canadiens (-110)
Edmonton Oilers (-110)
Over 6 (-110)
Under 6 (-110)
*Betting odds provided by BetOnline.ag
Montreal Canadiens vs. Edmonton Oilers Pick:
This should be an excellent matchup, and might even present an interesting clash of styles between two teams that should definitely be in contention for the North division’s top spot.
The Habs boast elite depth throughout their lineup, and though many criticize the team for lacking one true, game-breaking star – their lines can come at teams in waves, a trait that could be handy in this congested season.
For Edmonton, they don’t hold that same defensive rigidity or depth throughout their squad – but make up for it soundly with the play of two of the game’s best talents, Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl. That duo is nearly impossible for teams to handle, and the Canucks got a taste of how formidable they can be on Thursday night.
In this contest, it seems however that betting markets and the public seem to still be sleeping on the potential and ability of the Habs. They outplayed a talented Toronto side three nights ago for long stretches, and really should have won that contest. Josh Anderson is already in elite form, while the play of young centres Nick Suzuki and Jesperi Kotkaniemi have shown the skill and pace to somewhat contain a scorer like McDavid.
The Oilers meanwhile are a very much all-or-nothing club, and if their stars aren’t scoring, this quickly becomes one of the most suspect groups in hockey. They lack defensive depth and a shutdown ability, and bringing in overrated rearguard Tyson Barrie won’t help much with their woeful play away from the puck.
Expect the Habs’ speed and depth up front to really wear down a very weak Edmonton blue-line, especially on the cycle. On defense, Montreal possesses good talent regardless of who gets the McDavid assignment – and their collective physicality should frustrate number 97. And of course, in goal, Carey Price will prove to be up for the challenge, and definitely holds a heavy advantage in the crease over his adversary in Mikko Koskinen.
The betting markets haven’t caught up to the proficiency of Montreal just yet, but they will. Expect the speedy Habs to control 5-on-5 play en route to a steady victory on Saturday night. With the Oilers playing their third contest in four nights, look for Montreal to push the pace and earn the two points.