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Injury Updates for Flames, Oilers Ahead of Playoff Battle of Alberta

The latest injury reports coming out of both Edmonton and Calgary ahead of Game 1 in their second-round playoff series.

Going into the Stanley Cup Playoffs version of the Battle of Alberta means both the Calgary Flames and Edmonton Oilers need to gear up for a very physical series. Two teams who have a history of not liking each other, along with some very skilled players that could be prime targets for guys on the other end of the ice, the injury situation for the two teams heading into the series will be worth watching.

Related: Leon Draisaitl Dealing With Ankle Sprain, Could Oilers Rest Him?

Both teams have players who are banged up and it will be intriguing to see how much that affects the outcome of the games. Here is a quick rundown of who is missing, who we should watch and who is good to go.

Calgary Flames

The Calgary Flames added another body ahead of Game 1 when they called up Juuso Valimaki from the AHL. That said, most people believe this means defenseman Chris Tanev is likely not available to go. Tanev has been dealing with an injury but was on the ice according to Pat Steinberg of Sportsnet. Valimaki could be a backup plan or he could be Tanev’s replacement.

This is a big loss for the Flames if Tanev is out. He was slotted in on the top pair with Oliver Kylington and Tanev plays big minutes at five-on-five and is one of the top penalty killers on the team. If the Oilers get power-play opportunities, they will cash in on them.

Edmonton Oilers

The biggest question mark for the Oilers is the health status of Leon Draisaitl. He’s definitely not 100%, but he’s less than half of his normal self, that could be a series changer. According to reports, he’s dealing with a high right ankle sprain, but he is playing in Game 1.

Draisaitl hasn’t been staking with the team but Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said Draisaitl is doing “very good”. That may or may not be true, but it would take a lot to get Draisaitl and his coach to say anything other than that. One, they can’t give Calgary a reason to target one of the team’s best players. Two, Draisaitl isn’t coming out unless he absolutely has to.

The change that comes, even if Draisaitl plays is what happens if he can’t play center? That gives the Oilers a potent top line, but a lot less depth on lines two and three.

The Oilers do have some replacements ready to go. The organization called up seven players from the Bakersfield Condors: Stuart Skinner, Philip Broberg, Markus Niemelainen, Dmitri Samorukov, Dylan Holloway, Seth Griffith, and Brad Malone. If the injuries become a factor, we could see a couple of these names make their playoff debuts (Broberg did already play one game in the first round).

Next: Penguins Lowball Malkin and Letang: Are Both Ready to Leave?

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  1. Pingback: Flames Take Game 1: Oilers Out of Sorts Early, Poor Goaltending

  2. Pingback: Oilers Out of Sorts Early, Poor Goaltending – Hockey 1 on 1

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