The Edmonton Oilers claimed the 5th win of their season on Sunday as they defeated the Winnipeg Jets in the Heritage Classic behind a Cam Talbot shutout. The final score in the game was 3-0, a result that improved Edmonton to 5-1-0 on the season. With the Oilers' hot start, things have rarely looked better for NHL hockey in E-town over the last decade. Edmonton, following the Winnipeg win, are currently the 2nd favorites for the Pacific Division (7/2 with BetVictor) and a mid-favorite team when it comes to the Stanley Cup (20/1 with bet365).

San Jose vs. Edmonton in Pacific?

In the Pacific Division, the San Jose Sharks are considered the favorites still (7/4 with BetVictor). However, they have only opened the season 3-3-0 and they sit -4 for goal differential. One interesting thing to note with San Jose is that they have played a road-game heavy schedule so far. Five of their six games to date have been played as visitors. The Sharks and Oilers may yet emerge in a two-team battle in the Pacific. Upcoming, San Jose have a stretch of home games, ones that will help show if this team is over-rated or not.

But the complexion of the Pacific Division changed when Jonathan Quick's injury was revealed to be a long-term one. The Los Angeles goaltender, by his current timeline, won't be back until January. Barring some kind of remedying transaction, that's a huge chunk of games where the Kings are going to be featuring a back-up in net. It makes them a team, one that is currently 2-3-0, that should be giving up some bad goals instead of a stingy one that would normally be tough to beat.

90 to 1 on Oilers ancient history

In the NHL's big picture, how Edmonton have changed in the Stanley Cup ante-post is interesting.

This is a team that no one would back based on recent season results. They have no playoff appearances since game seven of the 2006 Stanley Cup finals. Over the longer term, they have not won the Stanley Cup since 1990 and have rarely been in competition for it since that time.

According to my notes, just ahead of the Milan Lucic acquisition in the summer Edmonton were 90 to 1 to win the Stanley Cup with Paddy Power. The same firm now has Edmonton at 35/1 while bet365 have the Oilers shorter at 20 to 1.

If there was a team in the NHL that could break the Canadian slump this season, I would lean toward Montreal doing it behind a healthy Carey Price. However, the Oilers were never 90 to 1to win the Cup and I don't see them as 7 to 2 to win the Pacific this season either.

There's a big game coming up for the Oilers soon. On October 26th, they will host the Washington Capitals. That could be a setback or it could be game where Edmonton prove that they are an elite team. So far this season, a win over the Blues is the only quality result for Edmonton.

But if the Oilers beat Washington, then heads will turn even more, I think.

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