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Photo Credit: Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports

GDB 1.0 Wrap Up: McDavid scores a hat trick and the Oilers shut out the Flames

Oilers win. We have Connor McDavid. Eat shit, Calgary. Final Score: 3-0 Oilers

After patiently sitting by our TVs all summer, the wait was finally over and the Oilers played a hockey game that actually mattered tonight. For me, I was so excited about the whole thing that the game itself was almost a blur. As much as I love a good round of the Battle of Alberta, my excitement made it hard to focus. It’s been said before, but the strange thing about being as excited as I was for tonight is that this was the shortest offseason that the Oilers have had in a decade, but, even so, it felt like an eternity. As for the game itself, I was having a really hard time not letting my excitement completely distract me from doing basically anything more complicated than drooling.

When the puck finally dropped, it was hard not to just stare at my TV with a big dumb grin on my face because the Oilers were playing for real again and it was the most beautiful thing I’ve seen in months. After the tears of joy had dried up, and the tear induced clouds had cleared from my vision, the Oilers followed through on their end with a nearly perfect home opener. Edmonton came out flying, pushed the pace, and never really looked back after Connor opened the scoring in the first period. Frankly, the Oilers were just too much for the Flames to handle and had it not been for an admirable performance by Mike Smith, this wouldn’t have ended as close as it did. Edmonton was easily the better team.

For the first time this year, let’s wrap it up.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

  • Who else would you expect to score the first goal of the year other than Connor McDavid? The guy is magic on ice and it just makes sense that he would get the first Oilers goal of the year. When he’s playing with Leon, they make magic. It’s really fun to watch and that first goal of the night was beautiful. As nice as the first goal was, his second of the night was an absolute masterpiece. Connor smashed the turbo button, flew past every single Flame on the ice, and beat Mike Smith high over the glove. Unbelievable. McDavid completed the hat trick to close out the night which was the first ever Oilers hat trick in a home opener in team history.
  • As you would expect, the Maroon-McDavid-Draisaitl line was fantastic again and basically did as they pleased in the offensive zone. Their cycle game was unstoppable, their puck management was stellar, and Calgary really didn’t have much of an answer for them.
  • The second line wasn’t anything to write home about until Todd McLellan switched things up and put Kassian up in Yamamoto’s spot. After he made that move, the second line was a lot more effective at generating offence. That’s not a knock against Yamamoto, that group just needed a different look.
  • Cam Talbot was perfect in his season debut and made it look easy while he was at it. Even though they were mostly kept to the outside, the Flames had their share of chances, but Dadbot was having none of it. He was sharp in the net, saw the puck well, and smothered anything that was near him. Great start for Talbot as he finished the night with 26 saves and a flawless save %.
  • Really good night for the Oilers’ defensive group. All six guys were solid when they were on the ice and they all found ways to keep Calgary to the outside and limit their access to the slot.
  • Who would have ever expected Kailer Yamamoto to crack the opening night roster? Amazing story coming into camp. Who knows how long he’ll be here (maybe all year?) but he deserves props for doing what most people thought was impossible. It wasn’t his greatest night but I’m not surprised that a teenager was probably nervous in his NHL debut.
  • HUUUUGE props to the Oilers for bringing out Constable Michael Chernyk out onto the ice for the pre-game ceremony. How this man is able to walk out there like that is an inspiration. Incredible. The guy is a superhero.
  • The Oilers finished the night with a 58.39CF% (80-57 attempts) with numbers courtesy of Corsica.
  • Gotta love seeing Kassian drop the mitts against Tanner Glass in the first period. The Battle of Alberta is supposed to be angry and I’m a big fan of getting the blood.
  • Edmonton went 54% in the faceoff circle which was a nice start for a sore spot in the stats column.

THE FACE PALMERS

  • Making us wait until 8pm for the season opener was a dick move, schedule guy. You know it’s true.
  • Anyone else get annoyed by how often Mike Smith has to put a little Hollywood on his glove saves? I couldn’t tell if it was that or the constant hair flipping that annoyed me more but he was doing a really good job of being annoying.
  • Surprise, surprise, the Oilers didn’t get enough from their bottom three lines. I’m not saying they played poorly but it would have been nice to see more offensive pressure. Something to work on.
  • The Oilers went 0/2 on the power play but they were generating some chances. Things went decently well (shorthanded 3-on-1 against excluded) but they just couldn’t cash. I imagine that will change soon enough.
  • I had to watch a feature about Jagr being a Calgary Flame and it was irritating to watch. I’d rather not see legends soil themselves with such a horrible jersey.

#GOODCONTENT

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

THE SEASON LAUNCH PARTY

We’re trying to raise as much money as possible for the victims of last Saturday’s attack in Edmonton and we could use your help. Tickets to the Season Launch Party are on sale now for $30 and will remain on sale straight through until the date of the party, or until they sell out — whichever happens first. Your ticket will also enter you into all of the draws for NationGear prizes and the jersey giveaways that will happen throughout the night.

  • Where: The Pint Downtown
  • When: Saturday, October 7th starting at 6pm
  • Why: Because we’ve got a hankerin’ for some partyin’
  • How Much: Tickets are $30 with net proceeds going to the victims of last week’s attack in Downtown Edmonton
  • How: Tickets are available here

For each ticket you buy, you’ll get one of the exclusive season opener t-shirts (shown above), a $10 Denizen Hall GC, a card for FREE perogies and tacos for a year at the Pint, $10 Oodle Noodle GC, a Nation sticker package, and, most importantly, a chance to kick off the season with your Nation brothers and sisters.


Source: NHL.com, Official Game Page, 10/04/2017, 11:06pm MST

  • Jordan88

    Remember when everyone talked about the flames having the best defence in the west?

    Yeah I said Hamonic was a awful pick up and McDavid retired him on that 2nd goal.

    Klefbom starts potting those shots and watch out.

  • Matt Turner

    Where be:
    Walter Witless?
    Hockey flub? Bwahahaha.
    Ken boned?

    Sorry. Also, not sorry. Enjoy getting your jocks pulled up over your faces for the next decade, losers.

    I love you Connor McDavid, you are awesome and great.

    I love Dadbot, you are awesome and great.

    Zack Kassian…love the inverted sideburns (I.e. goatee).
    Kassian – good at hockey and irony.

    Let’s go Oilers!

  • CBK

    So much for Calgary having the best D corps in the NHL.

    Gave up 40+ shots and to no ones surprise McDavid made Hamonic, Giordano, Hamilton and Brodie all look like pylons out there.

    Good game 😊

  • AlexTheOilersFanSince2006

    Well we were right about the defence…but we might’ve been wrong about the goaltending. Mike Smith was brilliantly tonight and if not for him, Edmonton takes this 6-0 or 7-0. Also I wasn’t aware that having Giordano, Hamilton, Brodie, and Hamonic meant you could employ the 1-2-1 trap. What a weak defensive system to employ all so you can avoid being run up in the scoreboard. Talbot with his 11th shutout as an Oiler, McDavid with the Hatty and the whole Oilers team was great from top to bottom. Nurse had a great game and I’m less worried about him being with Gryba as a result. No Sekera, no problem.

    And I was worried it would be Calgary who shutout Edmonton

  • oilman3

    It looked like men against boys out there. Oilers dominated offensively and defensively. You gotta love all the hype from Flames fans just waiting for their shot at redemption, only to be fed another dose of reality. Suck it Calgary.

  • vetinari

    Can we all now agree that “the best defence in hockey” is nowhere close to Calgary? I watched our guys manhandle Flame forwards for most of the night, pick up assignments like it was second nature, and give support where needed. We may not be the best in the NHL but the guys looked solid through the lineup. The get no hype but deserve some love… especially with Sekera out and Russell supposedly being a dud. Good job boys and good on McLellan bringing some peace and structure to our defence.

  • The last dynasty

    I’m no mathmagician, but it seems that Conner is on pace for 246 goals this year, Talbot is on pace for a 0.00 gga, and every Flame is on pace for 0 points for the season. Do we think it will last all year? Obviously we do. Do we wish we paid the Flames every game? Obviously.

  • giddy

    Couldn’t have asked for a better opening night. From honoring Cst Mike Chernyk, to McDavid hat trick, to Talbot shut out, to embarrassing the Flames in the season home opener on a national broadcast. Even the weather was pretty good. Cheers!

  • Dan 1919

    I just saw most of the first and the last half of the third. McDavid needs a parachute to make things more challenging and the rest of the Oilers seemed to be dominating almost all the time from what I saw. Can anyone elaborate on the rest of what I missed, should we still be concerned that there was no scoring from anyone else or was the whole team as dominant as it seemed from my sample and just didn’t get anything in tonight. How’d Nurse look and was Maroon pulled from the first line or just a juggle in the last minute when Lucic assisted Drai & McDavid?

    • AlexTheOilersFanSince2006

      Not much. Calgary had no jump to their game at all, resulting in them being dominated basically all 3 periods. The 4th line was unimpressive, Jokinen-Strome-Caggiula looked good. Nurse had a fantastic game as did the rest of the D. Don’t know why Maroon wasnt the ice for Connor’s hatty, but he had a solid game too.

  • Wasn’t a perfect game but solid victory, certainly didn’t look like a team of teens and lower 20s. It’s refreshing to see all 5 guys on the ice commit to defense and make plays in our own zone, I actually forget that we were missing Sekera and that Monahan and Gaudreau were dressed tonight(im not even joking). I love that a team known for it’s veteran defensive depth got completely shut down and outclassed by a team known for it’s youth. Looked like one of those western conference heavyweights we used to dream about on this site winning all the battles and getting greasy in the dirty areas and doing all the little things right. Was just a sound, complete, and effective game by everyone. Im getting ahead of myself after one game but you gotta love the maturity shown by this team, was just another day at the office for them. Those 13 playoff games didn’t go to waste and they got the most out of it.

    • Dan 1919

      From what I saw it was like the Oilers were playing a solid unit game as if it were last year’s playoffs. If this is their new normal and they gained that much experience from the playoffs, they could seriously have their way with the Western conference. That was one game though, we won’t get too far ahead of ourselves.

      • Dr. Merkwurdigliebe

        They will challenge for the Conference lead for sure. The playoffs last year were absolutely invaluable to the experience of this team. I kept reading people who were saying the Oilers will take a step back this year and that they won’t improve. Those people haven’t been paying attention. It’s onwards and upwards for the Edmonton Oilers and the rest of the league has to deal with it.

  • Oil4Ever

    Well that couldn’t have gone any better. They played a masterful game tonight.
    Am I the only one dumbfounded as to why the Shames didn’t try to get the Monahan/Gaudreau line away from McDavid’s line? Their best line spent the whole game chasing McDavid and Co. lol!

  • OilCan2

    I like it when Connor does it in threes: 3 trophies at the NHL party and three to set the tone in the home opener. Too bad we will only get Calgary 3 more times this year. I really wish they pull up their socks and make the playoffs so we can beat them 8 times this season.

  • theJason

    That second goal… I’ve never, ever, ever seen any one skate so fast! I’ve watched the highlight a couple of times and I can’t believe the speed. It’s like he crosses the oiler’s blue line and goes wrap 9! I still can’t believe that goal!!

  • The Flames spending all that on defense was never going to do anything. A pylon for McDavid but with a hefty price tag is still a pylon. Denis Grebeshkov could’ve been there on the 2nd goal and it would’ve ended up exactly the same.

  • Jordan88

    Went over to Flamesnation.

    Never have I bashed a player who wears our Jersey. But holy crap that’s all that you see over there. I mean they suck but still it was only 1 game its only gonna get… Worse.