What Friday's four-game NHL schedule doesn't have in quantity, it more than makes up for in importance as far as the race for the last playoff berth in the Western Conference is concerned.
The two biggest games of the night will be played in Alberta, and both will face off at 9 p.m.
In Edmonton, the last-place Oilers would like nothing more than to slow down the Detroit Red Wings
, who currently hold eighth place and come to town after winning 2-1 in Calgary on Monday. The Oilers return to Rexall Place after losing 4-2 at Minnesota on Tuesday. The game can be seen on TSN in Canada.
About 175 miles down the road in Calgary, the Flames will be in the unusual position of rooting for their archrivals as they prepare to host the San Jose Sharks
. The Flames won 3-2 at Colorado on Wednesday to get within a point of the Red Wings, who have a game in hand. The Sharks have dropped four in a row, including a 3-2 loss at Vancouver on Thursday.
The evening's action starts at 7 p.m. ET when the Minnesota Wild
, coming off a 5-0 loss at Nashville on Thursday, visit Columbus. The Blue Jackets have been off since a 5-3 win over the Oilers on Monday. The game can be seen on the NHL Network in Canada.
In the final game of the night, the New York Islanders
pay their first visit to Anaheim since October 2006 for a game with the Ducks. Both teams are coming off victories -- the Isles shocked Vancouver 5-2 on Tuesday, while Anaheim beat Chicago 4-2 at home on Wednesday.