After an exciting back-and-forth win over the New York Rangers yesterday morning, the Edmonton Oilers now have a 11–10–0 record, good for 22 points, currently landing them in a wildcard spot a quarter of the way through the season. Usually, it’s around this time when we start to see who is swimming and who is sinking in terms of hockey, and it’s clear that the Oilers currently barely have their head above the water. Yes, the club has had a tough schedule out of the gate playing teams like the Carolina Hurricanes and the red-hot New Jersey Devils twice already, but these are teams they have to be able to beat if they want to make the playoffs.
With this in mind, where do you see the Oilers finishing the regular season?
We asked, you answered. lets take a look.
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The Oilers finish first in the division
15% of poll voters believe that the Oilers will be able to overcome the odds and make it to the top of the division by the end of the season, granting them home-ice advantage in the playoffs.
Even with the Oilers’ poor start to this season, there is still a possibility that they turn it around and end the season at the top of the division. However, for this to happen, other teams, specifically the Vegas Golden Knights, would need to fall off. This is pretty unlikely, considering they are 16–5–1 on the season thus far. Teams that start the season off with a good record give themselves wiggle room later in the season, and the Oilers are giving themselves almost no wiggle room at this point to finish at the top of their division.
The Oilers finish third in the division
A third of poll voters think the Oilers will be able to snag the second spot in the Pacific Division.
Most fans will agree that this is a more realistic outcome than first in the division, but the Seattle Kraken are currently occupying this spot and are playing really good hockey. The Kraken are 12–5–3 on the season, good for 27 points and seventh in the entire league. If the Oilers are going to pass them and take second in the division, they will need to start stringing together some wins and hope that the Kraken start returning to last season’s form.
The Oilers manage to snag a wildcard spot
40% of poll voters believe the Oilers will make the playoffs by squeaking into a wildcard spot.
This is where the Oilers currently place in the Pacific Division and looks like the most realistic of the options when looking at the current division standings. Unless their play on the ice changes, and they go on a roll rattling off a winning streak of some sort, they will likely remain a borderline playoff team.
The Oilers miss the playoffs
Not many poll voters believe that the Oilers will miss the playoffs this year.
This is definitely a possibility when looking at the team’s current position within the Pacific Division. Given the talent on the team with players like Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, it’s no secret that the team has been underperforming. A specific area of concern for the Oilers is the penalty kill which is currently at 73.2% and 27th in the league; if these numbers don’t improve, there is a good chance that they do miss the playoffs.
Fans are hopeful that the Oilers will make the playoffs
The Oilers have certainly put themselves in a tight spot with the underwhelming start to the season. It’s clear to see that the team is really missing Evander Kane and Kailer Yamamoto in the top six. Both Kane and Yamamoto brought a tenacious and feisty aspect to the forward group, which the team is currently lacking. If the Oilers are going to turn this season around they will need to tighten up defensively and stay out of the box until they get their penalty kill back on track.
Thank you to everyone who took part in the poll, stay tuned for next week’s Sunday Census!
Photo by Curtis Comeau/Icon Sportswire