This weekend’s edition of the Sportsnet CHL Saturday Showcase will see two Alberta rivals mix it up when the Calgary Hitmen (21-17-3-1) and Edmonton Oil Kings (24-14-4-4) face off at 3:30pm ET/12:30pm PT on Sportsnet and Sportsnet ONE.
The hosting Oil Kings enter the contest coming off a 4-3 shootout loss to the Medicine Hat Tigers in which defenseman Wyatt McLeod led the way with a two-point effort (1-1-2). Edmonton has picked up at least one point in its last four appearances (3-0-0-1) and has just two regulation losses in its last 13 outings (8-2-1-2). Entering Friday, the Oil Kings sit in the top spot in the Central Division with 56 points.
Meanwhile, the Hitmen enter the Saturday Showcase having not played since the previous weekend, stewing on a 7-3 upset to the Prince Albert Raiders. Left-wing Riley Stotts, a Toronto Maple Leafs prospect, picked up two goals in the loss. The defeat snapped a six-game win streak for the Hitmen, who have gone 5-1-0-0 since the calendar flipped to 2019. The Hitmen hold down the second slot in the Eastern Conference wild card race, trailing only the Tigers.
Saturday’s content marks the fifth of eight games between the Hitmen and Oil Kings this season. Edmonton leads the season series with a 3-0-1-0 record, with Calgary’s lone victory coming in a 4-3 overtime decision on home ice on December 1 led by a multi-point performance from Hitmen centre Jake Kryski (2-1-3) and netminder Jack McNaughton, who turned aside 26 shots.
The most recent meetup between the two sides came December 28 when the Oil Kings outpaced the Hitmen by a 7-3 score on home ice, in which six Edmonton skaters notched two points and goaltender Dylan Myskiw came away with the victory.
Kryski (19-27-46) and captain Mark Kastelic (29-17-46) lead the Hitmen in scoring this season with 46 points a piece, while Kastelic ranks first in the entire Western Hockey League with 15 power-play goals. In Edmonton, Oil Kings right-wing Trey Fix-Wolansky leads his squad in scoring with 25 goals and 51 assists through 44 games. His 76 points trail only Portland Winterhawks left-wing Joachim Blichfeld for the league lead in scoring.
Catch all the action between the Hitmen and Oil Kings on Saturday on Sportsnet and Sportsnet ONE and in the United States on the NHL Network when the puck drops at 3:30pm ET/12:30pm PT.