3 Keys: Oilers at Flames, Game 2 of Western Second Round

3 Keys: Oilers at Flames, Game 2 of Western Second Round

(2P) Oilers at (1P) Flames

10:30 p.m. ET; ESPN, CBC, TVAS, SN

Flames lead best-of-7 series 1-0

Mike Smith will start in goal for the Edmonton Oilers when they try to even their series against the Calgary Flames in Game 2 of the Western Conference Second Round at Scotiabank Saddledome on Friday.

Smith was pulled 6:05 into the first period after allowing three goals on 10 shots in an eventual 9-6 loss in Game 1.

“It’s not a great perspective to be on the bench nine minutes into a hockey game in the playoffs. Saying that, it’s one game,” Smith said. “If they won it 2-1 or 9-6, it’s still one win and you have to win four. It’s about regrouping now and not letting that affect the rest of the series, moving on and focusing on Game 2.”

The Flames said they will make some adjustments; they weren’t thrilled especially after having a 5-1 lead early in the second period before the Oilers tied the game 6-6.

“We had a good meeting this morning,” Flames forward Mikael Backlund said. “We know we have to do a better job when we’re up and overall. You can never be satisfied. It’s a series, one game doesn’t do it for you, so you have to keep pushing.”

[RELATED: Complete Flames vs. Oilers series coverage]

Teams that take a 2-0 lead are 339-52 (86.7 percent) winning a best-of-7 series the series, including 2-0 in the first round.

Here are 3 keys to Game 2:

1. Flames offense awakens

The Flames scored nine goals in Game 1 after getting 15 in seven games against the Dallas Stars in the first round. They’re averaging 41.9 shots on goal in eight Stanley Cup Playoffs games, third behind the Colorado Avalanche (43.5) and Pittsburgh Penguins (44.3).

Given that, the Flames feel they can get more production this series.

“I think we had a lot of looks against Dallas. Obviously, their goalie (Jake Oettinger) had a couple of good games there,” forward Elias Lindholm said. “We’re a good team, we have a lot of talent, a lot of skill and we know we can put the puck in the net.”

2. Gutting it out

Forward Leon Draisaitl and defenseman Darnell Nurse may not be 100 percent healthy, but Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said the two have nevertheless given them “great minutes.” Draisaitl has 12 points (six goals, six assists) and is averaging 19:45 of ice time per game in the playoffs. Nurse has two points (one goal, one assist) and is averaging 21:04 per game, second on the Oilers behind Connor McDavid (22:10).

Woodcroft expects each to keep giving his all.

“We’ve done some things specifically with Leon, where we’ve moved him around the lineup a little bit,” Woodcroft said. “He’s still playing big minutes for us. He’s still making plays and has an impact on the game. And he’s just a warrior.

“In terms of Darnell, Darnell is someone that has a champion’s mindset. He’s somebody that refuses to be deterred. While he might not feel at his 100-percent marker, he’s going to give you everything that he has, and he makes us a better team.”

3. Another high-scoring affair?

Game 1 was a bit of a repeat of the final regular-season game between the Flames and Oilers on March 26, when Calgary defeated Edmonton 9-5. But they don’t see this as a trend and aren’t expecting high-scoring affairs throughout the series.

“We know we have to be better,” Backlund said. “We liked our first period a lot but then we let them come back in the game. We know we can play a lot tighter and do a better job than we did in the second period and beginning of the third. From our standpoint, we like to be that boring team that wins. We’re fine with that.”

Oilers projected lineup

Evander Kane — Connor McDavid — Leon Draisaitl

Zach HymanRyan Nugent-HopkinsJesse Puljujarvi

Warren FoegeleRyan McLeodKailer Yamamoto

Josh ArchibaldDerek RyanZack Kassian

Darnell Nurse — Cody Ceci

Duncan KeithEvan Bouchard

Brett KulakTyson Barrie

Mike Smith

Mikko Koskinen

Scratched: Philip Broberg, Devin Shore, Derick Brassard, Kris Russell

Injured: None

Flames projected lineup

Johnny Gaudreau — Elias Lindholm — Matthew Tkachuk

Andrew Mangiapane — Mikael Backlund — Blake Coleman

Dillon DubeCalle JarnkrokTyler Toffoli

Milan LucicTrevor LewisBrett Ritchie

Noah HanifinRasmus Andersson

Oliver KylingtonMichael Stone

Nikita ZadorovErik Gudbranson

Jacob Markstrom

Dan Vladar

Scratched: Adam Ruzicka, Ryan Carpenter, Connor Mackey

Injured: Christopher Tanev (undisclosed)

Status report

Foegele could make his series debut after being a healthy scratch in Game 1. … Tanev, a defenseman who has missed the past two games, participated in the morning skate Friday on the fourth pair with Connor Mackey.

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