You can’t sleepwalk through two full periods and expect to win a game, even if it’s against a team that goes nearly a month at a time without winning like the Flyers. The Oilers put forward a terrible effort last night and got a result they deserved.
The Oilers grabbed the lead early on in the second period on the penalty kill. Connor McDavid made an excellent defensive play working the puck away from Sean Couturier, busted down the ice, and fed Leon Draisaitl, who made a nice swoop through the circle to be beside the net at the perfect time for a tap in.
Great pass from Voracek, Raffl snipes on the breakaway! pic.twitter.com/isarY9UCkO— Flyers Nation (@FlyersNation) December 7, 2017
The Flyers went on to score three goals after that, highlighted by this one by Michael Raffl. Kris Russell was rolling into the zone and made a terrible pass to Patrick Maroon that resulted in a breakaway for Raffl. I’m not really sure why, with a couple players moving towards the net, Russell didn’t just get a low shot on goal. But his dad was in the rodeo, so it’s fine.
The Oilers pulled themselves to within one goal with a few minutes left in the third when Ryan Nugent-Hopkins buried a rebound past Brian Elliott. This was an excellent shift by the second line to work the puck down low and get it out in front. Rather than trying to make a perfect play, Patrick Maroon got the puck, fed Mike Cammalleri in front, and RNH was on the doorstep ready for a rebound.
Brian Elliott makes one final save, Wayne Train seals it! pic.twitter.com/aVIVpa7BQ0— Flyers Nation (@FlyersNation) December 7, 2017
In the dying seconds of the game, the Oilers had a nice flurry of chances, but it was too little too late. Brian Elliott stood tall and Wayne Simmonds ended up burying an empty net goal for the 4-2 win.
The Oilers were asleep at the wheel for the first two periods and that shows up in the numbers. The Flyers had 30 even strength shot attempts in comparison to Edmonton’s 23 through 40 minutes, which honestly flatters the Oilers. They were very, very bad and the only reason it wasn’t worse is because they were playing a team that lost every single game for nearly a month. They turned on the jets in the third period, but failed to generate many quality chances. The Oilers had 18 shot attempts to Philadelphia’s 10, but Edmonton only had four high danger chances in the final 20 minutes.
- There isn’t all that much to say about a game like that. As I’ve mentioned multiple times, the team was asleep during the first two periods. I don’t know what the issue is or why the Oilers can’t motivate themselves to get off to a good start, but even after scoring a short handed goal to kick off the second period, they were still flat. I’m not sure what to suggest. But I have a sinking feeling it’s going to take more than smelling salts to wake this team up on a consistent basis.
- Laurent Brossoit was decent enough. Obviously he isn’t going to steal games for you, but he was good enough for the team to win. Unfortunately, there wasn’t very much room for error as the offence was non-existent throughout the majority of the game.
- I’m trying to think of positives from that game but am drawing a blank. Darnell Nurse had another good game, but otherwise, there wasn’t any strong, consistent play from anybody else on the ice.