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GDB 58.0 Wrap Up: McDavid’s hat trick powers Oilers to a 4-2 victory

Thank you, Connor. Final Score: 4-2 Oilers

After I posted the GDB this morning, I spent about 10 minutes just staring at my screen, the Oilers’ schedule, and off into space. I was trying to wrap my head around how this season went so wrong when everyone expected it to go so right. You can point to holes in the roster, or how some of the trades have been a downgrade in skill, but I don’t think that anyone would have expected things to go this badly in so many different ways. I know I’ve said that a few times lately, but I can’t shake the thought. It seems like anything that could go wrong does go wrong, and it’s happening only one season after the Oilers had everything go right for them. I guess, the Hockey Gords can be as cruel as they can be kind. I don’t have an answer as to how we end this curse, but maybe a win will be a step in the right direction.

As for today’s game, I wanted to start off slow and had my eyes set on making it through the first shot on net, getting through the first five minutes without a goal against and seeing where things went from there. Small goals and small wins, that’s what I was after. While the Oilers were able to summon the strength to get through the first shot on net without allowing a goal, they couldn’t get past the second and the Oilers found themselves in a familiar position and down by a goal before the game was even five minutes old. Clearly, it’s a proud tradition and who am I to question tradition. In a similar fashion to yesterday’s game, the Oilers were able to settle into the game after another dreadful start, with the obvious difference being that they were able to score some goals to cover up for their mistakes. Of course, it helps a tonne when Connor McDavid throws the team on his back and personally puts three goals up on the board.

Sometimes I shudder to think what this team would look like without him, but on this day, I’m just happy he’s here. Thanks for saving us from another loss, Connor. And thank you for saving me from back-to-back beets.

The wrap.

THE BRIGHT SIDE

  • After going pointless in his last two games, I knew that the McPoints would start to come again soon and I was happy to see it happen today with a pair of game-tying goals and an empty netter to complete the hat trick. Like I’ve been saying, aside from winning another draft lottery one of the only things left to be excited about this season is for Connor to win the points race. Would you bet against him?
  • Ryan Strome gave the Oilers the lead late in the third period after he got absolutely robbed on what looked like a gimme, earlier on in the frame. The second time around, Strome was able to snap the wrist shot through traffic and past Varlamov to break his 21-game goalless streak and give the Oilers a win. Strome played well today and it was a big plus to see him cash in on one of his many chances. Your move, Looch.
  • Leon Draisaitl had one of his better games in a while as he was able to get back to protecting the puck and distributing it with ease. Leon collected two assists on the afternoon and was a big part of the comeback and eventual win.
  • Part of me was half expecting the Oilers to play Cam Talbot again despite the numbers showing that back-to-back starts don’t work as well and, as it turns out, that’s exactly what happened. Clearly, Montoya is still not feeling right after taking a puck to the head in practice, and I guess Brossoit wasn’t an option either but he was still the backup today. Either way, Talbot was fired up after yesterday’s loss and I was curious to see how he would handle the back-to-back starts. After allowing a goal on the second shot, I wasn’t feeling so great, but he did manage to settle down and make some big saves as the game went on. Despite another early goal, Talbot had a decent afternoon and played well enough to give his team a win, stopping 24 shots and finishin with a .926 save%.
  • Matt Benning looked good after drawing back into the lineup after being a healthy scratch yesterday. He had had a couple of really solid chances and could easily have had a goal to go along with the assist he picked up on McDavid’s goal. Benning needs more games like this one to try and get back to the level he was playing at a year ago. He’s still inexperienced and there will definitely be more ups and downs, but it’s important to see him contribute and find some consistency.
  • The Oilers were perfect on the penalty kill again, continuing the strange narrative that is their home versus away comparison when down a man. They killed off all three chances against to finish with another clean sheet on the PK.
  • Last year, the Oilers could win hockey games but not faceoffs. This year… well… You get the idea. Once again, Edmonton did a good job on the draws, winning 53% of the faceoffs taken.
  • For the second straight game, the Oilers got 40 shots on goal. It was nice to see the shooting percentage give them a break for a change.
  • The Oilers were passing the puck with purpose today and it translated into fewer giveaways and unnecessary possession time for the Avalanche. According to the NHL’s count, the Oilers only gaveaway the puck three times and I believe it. It was one of the best displays of puck management that we’ve seen from the boys in a while now. More of that please.
  • An excuse to drink early!

THE FACE PALMERS

  • Tyson Jost walked in and ripped a wrist shot past Talbot to give the Avalanche the lead on their SECOND SHOT OF THE GAME! I mean, c’mon. It’s just ridiculous at this point.
  • Alex Kerfoot gave the Avalanche back the lead after an impossible deflection beat Talbot only 1:10 after Connor McDavid scored to tie the game at one. Luck on the tip aside, the Avalanche responded the way you’d hope your team would after a goal, claiming back the lead almost immediately.
  • Taking a look at the power play (because I have to), the Oilers performed as expected:
    • 0/1 on the PP, though, to be fair, they didn’t get four shots on goal.
  • Make it 22 goalless games for Milan Lucic. At this point, I would start to feel bad for the guy but his $6 million pay cheque is preventing that from happening. Maybe he could try a little rain dance or something because this drought is real. Strome ended his slump, maybe the big man is next.
  • I said it yesterday and I’ll say it again today. I like Jujhar Khaira a whole lot but I don’t like him as the second-line centre. If they want to play Draisaitl with McDavid then that’s cool but then there’s no chance Peter Chiarelli should be trading Ryan Nugent-Hopkins.
  • Is it just me that wishes the Oilers would have had the depth to give Drake Caggiula some time in the AHL? Can’t be just me.

SCORING SUMMARY

1ST PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
04:04 Colorado Tyson Jost (6) 0-1

2ND PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
11:57 Edmonton Connor McDavid (24) ASST: Patrick Maroon (16), Matt Benning (9) 1-1
13:07 Colorado Alexander Kerfoot (15) ASST: Anton Lindholm (3), Colin Wilson (10) 1-2

3RD PERIOD

TIME TEAM DETAILS SCORE
08:59 Edmonton Connor McDavid (25) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (34), Kris Russell (17) 2-2
13:18 Edmonton Ryan Strome (8) ASST: Michael Cammalleri (17), Adam Larsson (4) 3-2
18:34 Edmonton EN – Connor McDavid (26) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (35), Oscar Klefbom (13) 4-2

#GOODCONTENT

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Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 02/18/2018 – 3:30pm MST

    • KateC

      This team made it to the 2nd round of the playoffs last season and Chia was voted GM of the year. This season, the same team finds its self 6 points out of last place in the NHL. Conner McDavid is the Captain, an emotionless young man( at least on camera) who does what he does…scores goals but little else in terms of leadership at least as far as a fan can see.He shows up in the community when he needs to for optics sake. Meanwhile, Leon continues to go to bars and behave like a stereotypical horny young man. Rumors abound about locker room toxicity. And toxicity can sink any team.
      On ON, I find many negative comments about the old Oilers and how they are ruining the team. The old Oilers who won Stanley Cups, the boys on the bus, had chemistry and that is why they won over and over again They had something that owners, GMs, mangers and coaches cant’t magically produce no matter how hard they try and scout.

      my friends and I many many years ago would play street hockey in front of Kevin Lowe’s house and Wayne and Mark who were often over at Kevin’s would come out and play with us. Simpler times. High fives, popsicles from my friend’s Mom. No egos, just a bunch of kids playing hockey.

      • crabman

        here we go again. the locker room is toxic. This has been so over played in the past too.
        You start off saying Chiarelli was the GM last year and won the GM of the year, actually Poile from Nashville did, and this year is almost the same as last year so it isn’t his fault. And in the next breath blame it on McDavid being captain, which he was last year, and Draisaitl going to bars which he did last year also. Those things didn’t change either but those are the problems. then you reference the old cup winning Oilers. Gretzky wasn’t known as an emotional, vocal leader and is considered to be the greastest player of all time and was the captain of the greatest team of all time. A team of hall of famers that didn’t just win because they were good in the dressing room. The team had chemistry for sure but the GM built the most talented team of it’s time. But I’m sure if Draisaitl stays in and McDavid starts to rah rah rah on the bench the cup will be ours next year.

  • Explicit

    Imagine how good he’d be on a well run organization. It’s a shame the hockey world won’t get to see him compete for the cup year after year. His career will never be as successful as it could have been. No wonder he was disappointed when the oilers won the lottery.

  • Top_Shelfie

    God bless McDavid!
    Anyone see Lucic play a hockey game today? Still scoreless after 22 games. A 7 million dollar mistake. The bad thing, we get to deal with this for another 5 years OilerNation.
    Ryan “the cup cake” Strome scores 1st goal in 22 games

    Go Top Shelf…..good win nonetheless!

  • Heschultzhescores

    This team can beat, or lose, to any team in the league on any given night. IMO, Statistics and predictions are a waste of time coming into a game.

  • Heschultzhescores

    Playing an afternoon back to back. Playing the hottest team at home whois 10 and 0 LTGs, Their star is back in the line-up. We have lost 6 in a row with no reason to velieve it’s not 7 coming. We get scored on the second shot, we get an ugly goal off a player go in in US. Outcome, We WIN of course…lol. What a strange year and team this is.

    • Fire Woodcroft!

      Damn it’s an awesome thing when Connor puts his head down and takes it to the rest of the league. Suck it Bettman!

      Despite everything else being in the toilet, we always have McDavid… Love it…

  • Opi

    “Rebuild era #Oilers teams, ranked by PTS%, current GM/coach marked with star:
    1. 16-17*
    2. 07-08
    3. 08-09
    4. 12-13
    5. 11-12
    6. 17-18*
    7. 06-07
    8. 15-16*
    9. 13-14
    10(T). 09-10, 10-11,14-15
    Steve Tambellini GM’ed three teams to better results than the 2017-18 Oilers.”

    “And let’s add some other context: Chiarelli/McLellan have had Connor McDavid on an ELC for all three versions of the #Oilers they ran, something Tambellini never had.”

    “Kevin Lowe’s reputation was in tatters after 2006-07, when he traded Chris Pronger for futures and had a mass exodus of pending UFAs. That team, the worst one he ever GM’ed, was only marginally worse than the club Chiarelli/McLellan have been building for three years.”

    “On the coaching side, Craig MacTavish and the Horcoff/Gagner Oilers had a terrible three-year run with in which they recorded 244 points in 246 games.
    At the current 2017-18 pace, McLellan’s three years with McDavid/Draisaitl will end with 246 points in 246 games.”

  • GK1980

    Puljujarvi’s reaction is hilarious! He doesn’t look like he is on a team that just had a disaster season. Ignorance is bliss, in a good way. So once again, this game highlights the lack of secondary scoring. Buy buy to a lot of the bottom 6 from now until next September..

    • Jon

      Maybe he’s not commenting because he didn’t watch the game and did something more enjoyable with his Sunday. I know plenty of fans that didn’t, myself included. Great for Connor, but meaningless hockey has little upside to watching, especially with the turds this team has laid recently.

  • Natti_89

    Yah another goal in the first 5 shots? I don’t care who you are but as a goalie in the NHL you can’t do that as much as Turdbutt. I’m sorry but he needs some help mentally or get a damn skills coach. Unacceptable. Not really much else to say…. I hate to say it but we should do something before CMD wants out. If I’m at work and I’m constantly doing everyone else’s job, I’m going to snap and start firing ….or at least look for another job. Good on Conner for the win. F*** Talbot

  • Oiler Al

    Meaningless, but still a win. Game was watchable thanks to McDavid.Only thing left is to see how far he gets with the scoring race.Also curious how much ice time the newbies get and how they do.

  • Connor McFly

    I was very disappointed with the fact that Chia and/or TMac did not back Talbot’s complaint nor did they back the team. They are two pusillanimous polecats and are likely to sooner than later be unemployed.