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GDB +7.0 Wrap Up: Oilers Cash in Five, How Bow Dah?

LOL at the haters! Final Score: 5-3 Oilers

Despite what many would have expected at the beginning of the season, the Oilers played (and won) a game in the second round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. Even with Connor McDavid, plenty of people had the Oilers written off before even playing a single game this year, and there’s a sense of satisfaction in seeing them be this wrong. That same doubt continued before tonight’s game as the talking heads raised all kinds of doubts about whether the Oilers would be able to keep up with the seasoned Ducks, and I wanted nothing more than for Edmonton to find a way to throw it back in their faces. This series is going to be a bloodbath and the Oilers are going to have to find a way to stay focused because the Ducks are going to play as dirty as the refs will let them get away with.

While the pregame shows would have led you to believe that the Ducks were going to walk away with this game, it was much tighter than some panels would have had you believe and obviously didn’t end up the way they predicted either. The play basically flowed back and forth until the whistles blew, and even then the shenanigans didn’t stop. The animosity was on full display from the opening puck drop and neither team was willing to back down, whether that meant throwing a punch or scoring a goal. In terms of chances and goals, the Oilers and Ducks fired burning arrows back and forth until there was only one team left standing. Fortunately, Edmonton was able to cash in four third-period goals and close out a big win on the road to open the series.

Pretty good for a team that no one expected to win, huh?

Wrap it up.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

Photoshop: @NewfieMikey
  • Mark Letestu came up huge on the power play with two goals on the night. His first came on the 5-on-3 power play and it tied the game up early in the second period. His second goal came from the exact same spot on another power play and it temporarily put the Oilers up by a goal. The Ducks were getting called for their countless stickwork and Clutch Letestu made them pay for it.
  • Adam Larsson scored his first playoff goal as an Oiler and it gave the visitors a little bit of insurance (not for long) midway through the third period. As if that wasn’t unlikely enough, Larsson followed up with his second of the night, which ended up being the game winner. If the playoffs are about unlikely heroes, then how about Adam Larsson popping two ginos? His first ever multi-goal game couldn’t have come at a better time.
  • Leon Draisaitl had a monster night with a goal and three assists. He powered through the Ducks at every turn. Big Sexy 2.0 did his share of heavy lifting and then some as he continued his reign of terror over the Ducks.
  • Pat Maroon picked up two assists on the night as he continues to pick up the pace as the playoffs go on. The big man needs to keep going and help Leon with taking the pressure off Connor.
  • Cam Talbot was as sharp as was needed and he gave the Oilers a chance to win. At the end of the day, that’s all you can really ask of him. Talbot finished the night with 33 saves and a .917 save%.
  • If Nuge didn’t have bad puck luck right now he would have no luck at all. He’s playing well but he just can’t seem to sink one. Yet again, he had a few nice chances in deep but he couldn’t get anything past Gibson. Worst luck of all was the shot that hit Gibson off the mask and then hit the post. I’ll look for a goat/chicken/something to sacrifice. That said, Nugey did get an assist on Letestu’s first of the night.
  • The Oilers went 2/5 on the power play and they ended up being huge goals in the end. If the Oilers can find a way to hit another gear with the man advantage then the Ducks are going to be in big trouble.
  • One more playoff win against the Ducks than Calgary.

THE FACE PALMERS

  • Ryan Getzlaf scored a power play goal less than a minute into the second period and it stung even more considering the weak Oilers play that resulted in the penalty right at the end of the first period.
  • Patrick Eaves got the Ducks back to within a goal (3-2) after the Ducks won yet another faceoff and he was able to get a stick on the point shot.
  • Jakob Silfverberg tied the game up by knocking the puck out of mid-air after it took a strange bounce off of Talbot’s blocker.
  • The Oilers gave up a two-goal lead in the third period. They got away with it this time but that’s still something they’re going to want to eliminate.
  • Josh Manson is apparently allowed to cross check as often as he wants. How many would you guys say that he got away with? At least five.
  • If you were watching a hockey game for the very first time and you chose tonight’s game, you would probably think that the Ducks are allowed to crosscheck/slash/hack as much as they want. Even though they did get called often for their stick work, this team is dirty and there’s no other way to really say it.
  • The Oilers also took some bad penalties but I can’t help but mention that a couple of the calls were pretty weak. The Ducks were only able to capitalize on one of their power play chances but Edmonton would still be best served staying out of the box. Let that be Anaheim’s thing.
  • Speaking of stick work, Connor is going to have to figure out a way to deal with basically dragging Ryan Kesler around all series long. McDavid didn’t have the same jump that we’re used to seeing and the panel was implying that he could be hurt during the second intermission. Their evidence was flimsy but who knows? I’ll hope for the best. To be fair, he did get an assist tonight on Letestu’s second goal of the night.
  • The Oilers went 43% in the faceoff circle and it wasn’t unexpected considering they finished 30th in the regular season for faceoffs, and the Ducks finished at number one. Still won. Meh.
  • “Scrumdog millionaires” -Jim Hughson

SCORING SUMMARY

1ST PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
No Scoring

2ND PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
00:37 ANA PPG – Ryan Getzlaf (4) ASST: Cam Fowler (1), Ryan Kesler (2) 0-1
06:22 EDM PPG – Mark Letestu (2) ASST: Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (1), Leon Draisaitl (3) 1-1

3RD PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
06:23 EDM PPG – Mark Letestu (3) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (4), Connor McDavid (3) 2-1
08:03 EDM Adam Larsson (1) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (5), Patrick Maroon (1) 3-1
09:22 ANA Patrick Eaves (2) ASST: Ryan Getzlaf (3), Brandon Montour (2) 3-2
10:47 ANA Jakob Silfverberg (3) ASST: Andrew Cogliano (1), Ryan Kesler (3) 3-3
15:20 EDM Adam Larsson (2) ASST: Oscar Klefbom (2), Patrick Maroon (2) 4-3
18:55 EDM EN – Leon Draisaitl (2) ASST: Milan Lucic (2), Adam Larsson (2) 5-3

BEST OF THE TWEETS

Talk to me, Twitter. Tweet at @OilersNation and @jsbmbaggedmilk for your chance to land in the Best of the Tweets.

GEAR UP FOR THE PLAYOFFS

If you’re down in Anaheim, head over to Violent Gentlemen HQ tomorrow (Thursday) from 4-7PM for some NationGear (including new grey game day tee), some new VG releases, a fantastic food truck, and neutral grounds to discuss the playoffs with some fellow fans.

  • D

    Was at the game tonight. Sorry Duck fans, these aren’t the Flames. Wanted to point out the classy Cam Talbot – during the national anthems, Cam skated out of his net and turned to face the honour guard. Cam stood at attention for both national anthems and did not move (even while some Ducks started skating) until the honour guard was dismissed. Cam Talbot – class act all the way.

  • VK63

    Two clean goals. Getzy and Larss first one. The rest were all weird and fortuitous. Ice was garbage. Connor had no jam. Came out of the d end clean in the third doing cross overs and had minimal thrust. Normally he is at Mach 6 in that situation. ”Twas very disconcerting to see turbo less 97.

  • Johnny Stomper

    Hey,

    I’m just saying and I don’t comment often but read lots on this site and lowetide and respect all. But seriously this team honestly has as good a chance as anyone in this playoff. They are from top to bottom amazing. Old school isn’t going to get it done. I few meet Washington in the finals then it’s anyones game. Pitts then a whole nother story

  • Ronr68

    I’m beginning to think that Connor might have caught the same bug that Leon had. He looked kind of pale in the post-game interview. He didn’t play bad, but he didn’t play like McDavid. I hope I’m wrong, but I’ll take a flu over an injury.

  • Rodeobill

    As a canucks fan, I really hate both these teams, but I am glad the canadian one has a shot at least. I watched the game “rooting” for the oilers, but found myself happy whenever either team got cheap shotted or scored upon. What a strange world. Almost better than watching my team only get beat down.

    Kidding aside, The Ducks have got you guys figured out and mostly shut you down tonight. They have you playing their game and are doing very well to shut down yours. Good win tonight, but Coach Todd has got his work cut out for these ones.

    • Not a First Tier Fan

      Oilers always seem to be playing the rope-a-dope routine. As a fan its frustrating to watch and you don’t have any nails left from biting them all the time. But when the boys DO suddenly click then watch out… ain’t a team in the league that can handle them.

      The truck for them, I think, is to click more and rope-a-dope less. And we’re seeing that come together before our eyes. Hey – we’re in the second round right? And judging from Getzlaf and Kessler at the end of the game the Oilers frustrated the hell out of them last night by not just rolling over and dying like the Flames did.

    • This wasn’t much different than the Sharks series. The Oilers are playing a tight, withholding style that’s a defense first mentality. They aren’t risking defense for any offense.

      In fact, when the Oilers strayed from that, they got bit, hard. In one play, while up 3-1, the Nuge line had two guys in around the paint with Lucic going for a wrap around that failed and ended in an odd man rush. Typically, a player like Ebs wouldn’t have been in the paint and Nuge would’ve played it a bit safer. If they’d play it like they usually would, they would’ve purposefully given up on the opportunity a bit earlier making the Ducks look very competent in their own end, but it would’ve resulted in a non-dangerous play back down the ice. But they didn’t and it cost them a goal and a lot of momentum.

      If they played it properly, they would’ve looked “shut down”…and I’d rather have that than a goal against.

      So yeah, this is no different at all from the Sharks series, where two shutout wins were off of 1 and 2 goal efforts.

    • pkam

      Just curious, if the Ducks have got us guys figured out and mostly shut us down tonight and we still have 4 goals (exclude the EN), what will our score be if they haven’t?

    • Ssseth

      Eberle (and to a degree Nuge) are gripping their sticks too tonight for sure. One that one PP Eberle bobbled the puck twice in a row.

      If we could even get a sniff of them as their former selves it would really help.

      The Chia additions and recent “coming of age” kids are running the show.

      Just win baby!

    • winteriscoming

      I thought that Ebs played his normal game took the body when needed to be and kept it simple. People need to get over what he doesn’t bring he is a small body so he is going to stay to the outside and look for his chances, his game is to finish not instigate. Look at what Johnny did in Cowgary.

      • Hemmercules

        I’m an Eberle fan but he can’t even finish is his main problem right now. I wouldn’t say he did anything terrible last night but he was off a bit. All but one power play he looked lost, just floating around to useless areas. I feel for the guy, his offensive confidence has been lost. He should be doing what Test is doing, he used to find that area quite well but seems to either put it right at the goalie or high over the corner. I hope he makes some adjustments this summer and returns to a 60 point player. His defensive game has made big strides this year for sure.

        • dolenator

          Agree on his defensive game the most memorable thing he did last night was being the first forward back on dangerous looking 3on2. Then made a good play tying up a guy and neutralizing the threat

        • btrain

          Completely agree. Maybe his least noticeable game of the playoffs thus far. The finish is lacking for both Ebs and RNH but defensively they have been fantastic and they are (aside for Ebs last night) getting their chances. As for the 2nd unit PP, I don’t love where they position Ebs on that unit. He often starts on the point and is positioned too high on cross seam passes and therefore too far out when a shot is taken. I know he is just a little fella but he should be in closer to the net as that is where he score his goals. When he is on his game not many are quicker at depositing pucks in shelves in tight. I also think they need to put Sleppy on that second unit and take out Caggiula. Two reasons for this, 1, that unit outside of Maroon is very undersized as it is (harder to get in on rebounds and to win battles for possession) and 2 Sleppy can rip the puck and is clearly willing to crash the net with speed.

        • pkam

          So is RNH. And if Lucic didn’t get his PPG and EN assist, he also has one assist in seven games.

          This line had been trusted by TMac to shut down the Big Joe line. Still Remember you said Eberle was only used to close games when the Oilers had a 2 goal lead. He was used to close games in the last minute of a one goal lead multiple times in the 1st round. So now the only thing you can bring up is his 1 assist in 7 games?

        • We will have to eat 2 mill, but he will be gone. How anybody defends this guy is beyond me. Had a Flames buddy over for the game, he got quite a chuckle when the helmet on the ice scared Eberle into giving up possession. Not costing us games like he did in the regular season, but he is not helping either. If RNH wants to re sign at 3.5-4 he would be worth keeping.

      • I am Batman

        Lol. 1) since when do you make the rules. 2) since when are such rules enforceable and by which means? 3) why are you defending “useless-Ebs”? Whatever you say- he is invisible out there, in wins or loses…. maybe he is just hiding away from contact, that’s gonna hurt this team

        • A-Mc

          In your support, i stopped counting after 6 Eberle turnovers.

          Great win by the Oil, but man was it a sloppy game at times! A win is a win though, lets get 3 more!

  • madjam

    Needling the opposition and taking advantage of your strategy . You got the feeling Todd wanted players to needle the Ducks into taking penalties and capitalizing on it , as Ducks so often done during regular season . The extra penalties cost Anaheim the game ,momentum and play . Like Ducks coach , they abandon smart hockey for chippy back alley type hockey . I expect next game , Ducks will be in more penalty trouble playing more of dumb hackey over smart hockey . End of game shows a prelude of type of game Ducks likely to escalate and once again lose because of it . Refs might not be as easy on them (Ducks) next game . Oilers played a smart game in game 1 strategically , and it paid dividends . Ducks going to have to cut down on penalties in order to compete with Oilers I believe .

  • Deke Rivers

    They might as well just let Ron McLean run the next the panel by himself. The other three won’t know what to complain about, especially if the Oilers win the next game. The two teams were so evenly matched yet, this never enters the narrative because of playoff experience? But the Sharks had more playoff experience, didn’t help them? If this was the Leafs challenging a team that finished two points above them and split the season with them you can be damn sure the discussion would be different. I’m not sure why we allow this? Hughson was sounding more pro Oilers than anyone so either hell froze over or it shows you how unbalanced the rest of the HNIC/Sportsnet talking heads can be.

  • Rob...

    I love the win, but that was no hockey game. I hope the ref’s families are OK. The mob will hopefully recognize that the zebras did their best to fix the game, as ordered.

      • Not a First Tier Fan

        That first period was pretty rough ref-wise but they started calling Anaheim on some of their crap later in the game… Dicks still got away with too much. I really laughed when the crowdstarted chanting ‘Ref You Suck”… Like the Ducks fans have anything to complain about…

        Also – what’s with all the Anaheim fans leaving before the end of the game? I know their team lost – but it’s the playoffs! Where’s the appreciation?

        • Hemmercules

          The way I look at it is, thats just the way the playoffs are. Refs are going to let a ton of stuff go. We haven’t watched the Oilers in the playoffs for so long we may have forgotten how abusive a series can be. Missed/non calls are going both ways, just sucks more when its against us.

  • Alberta Ice

    Thinking ahead: Stanley Cup Final. Rangers vs Oilers. Lundqvist vs Talbot. Just one of 8 possible juicy scenarios down the road. Meanwhile, let’s keep the focus on de-feathering the Ducks in this round. One game down; three to go.

      • you know Bettman did everything he could to keep the Oilers in Edmonton, right? You know he had a major influence in getting the new arena built, and by extension any improvement in downtown edmonton. I don’t understand why oilers fans would have any animosity towards him.

          • The development is still good for the city. Billions of $4 in investment in downtown. 1000’s of jobs. redevelopment of a completely neglected downtown. finally putting to use an area that for edmonton’s entire history was nothing but a barren piece of scrub land. I know…it sucks that taxpayers sometimes pay to improve their own city.

          • pkam

            I don’t understand the thinking of some Canadians. It is a business decision. Why it is a problem that the City invested a 100M and projected for 10B+ in next 20 years? Why do we think Katz should pay for all in Edmonton when he most likely wouldn’t have to in other cities? It is a win-win for Edmonton and Katz, why are we so jealous when someone can make money in a win-win business case?

  • Hemmercules

    Just a great game. Love the new heroes every game. Who would have ever guessed Larsson would pot two to win the game? Unbelievable.

    I feel like Anaheim is spending so much time being goonish and cheap that its taking them off their own game. McDavid and Drai were getting harassed hard last night and never broke, no bad retaliations. Its obviously going to be an abusive series, looked like at least 4 Ducks took some sort of injury last night. McD looks like he’s nursing a bit too. Hope he’s back to flying around next game.

    • ricardo2000

      Ducks thought they could bully their way to a win and intimidate the Oilers for the rest of the series.
      But they lost.
      Now they need to play to win, which means less hacking and whacking, by the Ducks.
      The Oilers can turn that to their advantage with team speed in game two. Many more offensive chances. AND run those creeps every chance they get. Let the Dicks listen for the sound of the train coming for them.

  • Space Pants

    I can’t believe what a c@nt Kesler is. Goes at Kassian at the end, probably before he realizes who it actually was, and then pulls a Taylor Hall turtle move. Then after the ref’s get them apart, Kesler skates over to the Getzlaf/Sekera scrum and punches Sekera in the back of the head. I sure hope he gets what’s coming to him.

  • Connor'sGotHart

    While I’d like to see more production from Connor. However,if they want to continue to be all over McDavid that’s fine by me because this is more than a one man team.

    • geoilersgist

      My thoughts exactly. When Larsson scored that first goal it was simply because they are so focused on Drai passing the puck to McDavid they all followed him to the net. This series will be over in 4 if thats how the Ducks want to play and I think I am fine with that.

  • Connor'sGotHart

    Honestly before last night’s game I was wondering if Draisaitl is a guy who cranks it up for the playoffs. He was really good against the Sharks and looks like he is really starting to percolate in these playoffs. Look at how he dominated a few years ago in Memorial Cup. This guy is fantastic.

  • Dobbler

    This bodes well for the series. The Ducks played their game. They played well. We beat them. As far as I’m concerned, if the Oilers don’t take any nights off, the refs don’t decide any games, and good/bad bounces are pretty close to even, we’ve got this. One game/series at a time, but I’m really optimistic about the idea of watching the Oilers play in the finals.

  • Been there

    Way to go Getzlaf! Couldn’t find Caggiula or Desharnais on the ice so go after Sekera. He is only a foot smaller than you! As for Kessler, slash and hack then turtle! Big tough hockey! NOT! And for KenBoner! Let me guess, Ducks in five? Loving it, you might just be our good luck charm, every wrong prediction brings us another win!
    Go Oilers Go

  • positivebrontefan

    I love how the Ducks are calling it a cheap flukey goal that won the game, and then go on to say that the Oilers went after Ryan Kesler at the end of the game when it was that rat that started it and then turtled once he realized who he made the mistake of picking on. The guy is a mediocre centerman, that will not have his way with this team anymore. And it sounds like Bieksa’s hurt. One down, three to go. Go Oilers!!!

  • YFC Prez

    I hope the ducks continue to check mcdavid like this. LD is the player they should be worrying about as this season he’s been eating the ducks lunch right in front of them and making them throw the wrappers in the trash when he’s done.

    Nuge also looked like the best player when he was on the ice several times. He and Lucic have looked great but unable to cash. One great player getting so much attention has created mismatches for 3 other great players on the Oilers.

    I have a feeling nuge is going to explode offensively soon. He’s been doing good things out there.

  • Oiler Al

    Great win, goes without saying …. but unlikely guys jumping in on the scoring wagon is huge! Even bigger is getting this early win on the road. Need more from guys like Eberle, Pouliot and Desharnia.This is one tough series and there cannot be any passengers.Hope to see Sekera and Russell bounce back, they had a rough night.