Thank you, Connor. That was amazing. Final Score: 6-2 Oilers
I don’t know if the schedule makers are nuts or if they’re trying to taunt us purposely, but the fact that the Oilers have only played three games in the past few weeks is annoying and unnecessary. To make matters worse, the Oilers had to work through their layoff rust against the Tampa Bay Lightning, the highest scoring team in the NHL. To win on this night, the Oilers had to play a seamless game in all three areas of the ice and find a way to limit Tampa’s ability to generate offence, a task easier said than done. But on this night, the Oilers were up for the task.
After coming out with all kinds of jump, even opening the score with a power play marker, the Oilers looked like they were playing like a team possessed. They played with all kinds of tenacity, and even after the Lightning scored to tie the game the Oilers kept hammering away until they were able to reclaim a lead that they would not give up again. From start to finish, the Oilers kept their feet moving and made smart choices with the puck, which really limited Tampa’s possession time and hampered their ability to generate any offence. Not to mention, Connor McDavid was an absolute warlord on the ice , and he looked like he would have single handedly won this game on his own if he had to.
In the end, the McMagic was too strong for Tampa as Connor’s clinic ended with him dominating the opponent on almost every shift. Best team in the league or not, I don’t know how you stop that.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- Connor McDavid opened the scoring for the Oilers on the power play after he perfectly deflected a Ryan Strome pass into the back of the net. Vasilevsky had no chance on the play and the Oilers opened the scoring with a power play goal for the first time in what seems like forever. Connor’s second goal was a thing of absolute beauty. He picked the puck up near the blue line and charged into the zone, beating the goaltender by threading the needle with a perfectly placed wrist shot. I still don’t know how he got that puck in the net. Unsurprisingly, McDavid completed the hat trick after he pulled away on a breakaway and made a nice deke and shoot move that beat Domingue and started the hats raining down. Was Connor done? Hell no. He scored a fourth goal by getting one of the friendliest/weirdest bounces I’ve seen in a while as the puck popped up and banked in off a Lightning player. What a night.
- Leon Draisaitl gave the Oilers back their lead with a second power play goal after he was able to sneak a puck through Vasilevsky from the side of the net. The Oilers moved the puck around the zone well, and Ryan Strome found Leon parked at the side of the net and he made no mistake, though he definitely got some luck. Not only was Leon scoring but he was also dishing as he added two more assists to his total as he finished with a strong three point night.
- Iiro Pakarinen scored his first goal of the season by being willing to shoot on a 2-on-1, and when he did he snapped a wrister right past the goaltender. The Oilers had been trying to force passes through on their odd-man rushes and it was refreshing to see Pakarinen rip it on net and get rewarded for it.
- Really solid game for Ryan Strome as he got the primary assist on both of the Oilers’ power play goals.
- Cam Talbot needed to be on his game if the Oilers had any chance of winning, and he held up his end of the bargain. He was square to the shots, controlled his rebounds for the most part, and was able to keep the boys in the game when they needed him. Dadbot played very well and deserved this win. He finished the night with 32 saves and a .941 save%.
- Oscar Klefbom played a team-high 22:59 and finished the night with an assist, two shots on goal, and four blocked shots.
- Would you believe me if I told you that the Oilers scored two power play goals in one night? Because that’s what happened. Like… for real.
- Classy move by the Oilers to have a moment of silence before the game for the Larsson family. Well done.
THE FACE PALMERS
- The game is over and I can’t watch Connor do Connor things any more tonight.
- Alex Killorn tied the game up at one apiece after the puck took a bad bounce off Darnell Nurse’s stick in the slot. Killorn was following up the play after making a pass at the blue line, and he got a gift with the turnover.
- Yanni Gourde got the Lightning back to within two goals after he was able to knock a loose puck past Talbot from right on top of the crease.
- Edmonton did manage to kill off a pair of penalties but they couldn’t kill the third. Fortunately, that PK stumble had no effect on the outcome. Thanks again, Connor.
- The Oilers went 48% in the faceoff circle but that’s just nitpicking because it really didn’t matter tonight.
|01:48||Edmonton||PPG – Connor McDavid (18) ASST: Ryan Strome (14), Oscar Klefbom (9)||0-1|
|09:42||Tampa Bay||Alex Killorn (8) ASST: Yanni Gourde (19)||1-1|
|17:24||Edmonton||PPG – Leon Draisaitl (13) ASST: Ryan Strome (15), Connor McDavid (40)||1-2|
|02:33||Edmonton||Connor McDavid (19) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (31), Matt Benning (8)||1-3|
|12:59||Edmonton||Iiro Pakarinen (1) ASST: Anton Slepyshev (3), Mark Letestu (9)||1-4|
|01:54||Tampa Bay||PPG – Yanni Gourde (19) ASST: Tyler Johnson (23)||2-4|
|06:55||Edmonton||Connor McDavid (20)||2-5|
|13:49||Edmonton||Connor McDavid (21) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (32), Michael Cammalleri (12)||2-6|
— Wendy Dwernychuk (@DwernychukWend1) February 6, 2018
Ryan Strome has saved the Oilers power-play.
— Dustin Nielson (@nielsonTSN1260) February 6, 2018
I watched my hat get thrown by 3 different people before it hit the ice. But it made it and it was worth it. God damn I love you so much, Connor. @OilersNation #ireallylovedthathat pic.twitter.com/14xW6XpNgq
— Travis Dakin (@TravisDakin) February 6, 2018
Connor McDavid is a team in the NHL.
— WheatNOil (@WheatNOil) February 6, 2018
Every time McDavid touches the puck, I can almost hear him say “yeah well now this is happening.” Unreal.
— Ryan (@IAmByks) February 6, 2018
Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 02/05/2018 – 10:00pm MST