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By The Numbers: Oilers take on Stars in Western Conference Final

Connor McDavid Oilers Connor McDavid - Sam Hodde/Getty Images

The Edmonton Oilers and Dallas Stars are set to clash in the Western Conference Final as Game 1 goes Thursday night in Texas. 

Dallas and Edmonton played each other three times during the 2023-24 regular season with the Stars winning two of those contests and dropping one game in overtime. 

This will be the Stars' third appearance in the Western Conference Final in the past five years. They defeated the Vegas Golden Knights in five games during the COVID-19 year in 2020 before losing to the Tampa Bay Lightning in six games in the Stanley Cup Final. Vegas defeated Dallas in six games in the West Final last season. 

The Oilers last made the conference finals in 2022 when they were swept by the Colorado Avalanche

Edmonton last qualified for the Stanley Cup Final in 2006 when they lost in seven games to the Carolina Hurricanes. They haven't won the Cup since 1990, which was their fifth in franchise history. 

Dallas' lone Stanley Cup victory came in 1999. 

This will mark the seventh time the Oilers and Stars have battled in a playoff series and the first since 2003. Edmonton won their first head-to-head series in 1997, thanks to Todd Marchant's Game 7 winner in overtime, but then dropped five series over next six seasons against Dallas. 

Let's take a closer look at the numbers between these two clubs. 



2023-24 Offence - Oilers vs. Stars

Stat Oilers Stars
Record 49-27-6 (2nd in Pacific) 52-21-9 (1st in Central)
Goals 292 (4th in NHL) 294 (3rd in NHL)
Goals Per Game 3.56 (4th in NHL) 3.59 (3rd in NHL) 
Power-play Goals 64 (5th in NHL) 58 (9th in NHL)
Shorthanded Goals 7 (Tied for 6th in NHL) 12 (2nd in NHL)

Despite having two of the NHL's most talented offensive superstars in Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl as well as 54-goal scorer Zach Hyman, the Stars were still able to produce more goals than the Oilers during the 2023-24 regular season. 

The Stars' depth was key to netting the third most goals in the NHL as Jason Robertson, Joe Pavelski, Wyatt Johnson, Roope Hintz, Matt Duchene, Jamie Benn, Mason Marchment and Tyler Seguin all tallied 20 or more goals. 

However, the Oilers' playoff offence has been more effective, scoring an NHL-best 46 goals compared to 38 by the Stars. 

In fact, the top four playoff scorers are all members of the Oilers in Draisaitl (24 points), McDavid (21 points), Evan Bouchard (20 points) and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (16 points), while Hyman is the leading goal scorer with 11. 

Defenceman Miro Heiskanen is the Stars' leading playoff scorer with five goals and eight assists over 13 games, good enough for 11th in the league. 

Edmonton's power play was one of the best during the regular season, but they have taken it to a different level in the postseason, scoring a league-leading 15 goals over 12 games, good enough for a 37.5 per cent rate. 

The Oilers' star power taking on the Stars' depth will be a key matchup on the offensive side of things for this series. 



2023-24 Defence - Oilers vs. Stars

Stat Oilers Stars
 Goals Against 236 (10th in NHL) 232 (8th in NHL) 
Goals Against Per Game   2.88 (10th in NHL) 2.83 (8th in NHL) 
Save Percentage .904 (13th in NHL)  .904 (13th in NHL)  
 Shots Against  2,307 (5th lowest in NHL) 2,350 (7th lowest in NHL)
Penalty Kill 79.5 (15h in NHL)  82% (8th in NHL) 

The Oilers got off to a very slow start to the season defensively and between the pipes, which eventually led to the demotion of goaltender Jack Campbell (and his $5 million cap hit) to the minors and the firing of head coach Jay Woodcroft. 

Stuart Skinner was able get things on track in net as the Oilers' became one of the hottest teams in the NHL in November and December, finishing with the 10th best goals-against average. Skinner won 36 games in 2023-24 and posted a 2.62 GAA. 

Skinner has started 10 of Edmonton's 12 playoff games alongside a 2.87 GAA, while backup Calvin Pickard started Games 4 and 5 against the Vancouver Canucks in the second round. 

Dallas' goaltending has been more consistent and reliable this season thanks to 25-year-old Jake Oettinger, who won 35 games in 54 starts. 

Oettinger had another strong season for the Stars and has been one of the best goaltenders during the playoffs, posting a 2.09 goals-against average over 13 games – best among the goalies remaining in the postseason.