It was a decent effort but the Oilers shot bullet holes in their dinghy. Final Score: 4-2 Capitals
When the Oilers and Caps met up a week and a half ago at Rogers Place, our boys played one of the most complete games that I’ve seen from them in quite some time. We’ve seen plenty of quality outings this year, but that one was special. From the opening puck drop to the final buzzer, Edmonton controlled the play and kept Washington’s offence in check, and it allowed them to power their way to a 4-1 victory. Coming into tonight’s game, I was obviously hoping for that same level of effort and attention to detail. If they could do that, we’d be good. Unfortunately, attention to detail was the last thing that the Oilers had going for them early as a few doses of blown coverage in the defensive zone allowed the Capitals to sink a pair of goals in the first six minutes. To their credit, the boys didn’t quit despite the early hole and they were able to claw their way back into it, though they’d never get closer than within one goal.
The problem with tonight’s game was that the Oilers actually played well in many respects but refused to do themselves any favours in others. On the offensive side of the puck, the Oilers moved the puck well, cycled it efficiently, and were quite effective. I’d even say that the fact that they were only able to score two goals is sort of misleading to how much they were buzzing around the net. By my eye, the Oilers created more than enough opportunities for themselves to swing the game in their favour, but any time they managed to get something going they would ultimately get derailed by varying flavours of defensive gaffes and missed assignments. They’d get a goal to bring the game back to within one, then they’d space on coverage or fail to get the saves they needed to weather the storms. It was up, it was down, it was all kinds of frustrating to see a decent effort get wasted as a result of a few glaring mistakes.
Shake it off, boys, we’ll see you tomorrow in Tampa.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- I love watching Connor McDavid go up against the best players in the league because it always seems like he cranks his game up a notch, and tonight’s head-to-head with Ovi as another chapter in that series. So when the Oilers were down by two goals early in the first period, it was no surprise that it was the captain that got his team on the board and back in the game… for a while.
- After Oshie put the Capitals up by a pair, Leon Draisaitl responded with a perfectly deflected goal midway through the second period to keep his team in it. Coming into this game, Draisaitl had three goals in his last five and it’s very nice to see the big man heating up.
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins finished the night with two more assists on the pile and he’s quietly putting together a very nice start to the season.
- Personally, I thought the Ryan Strome line looked good tonight but those three dudes are all cursed so they’re not allowed to actually have a nice effort pay off in any way. The scoresheet may not have any love for you boys, but I do.
- Kris Russell is an absolute madman. The guy willingly threw his body in front of every puck that came near him, including some blasts from Alex Ovechkin, and I wanted to give the man props for the sacrifice. It may not be smart, but dammit it’s impressive.
- Edmonton managed to score again with the power play, which is still a luxury that I’m getting used to seeing on a semi-frequent basis, but they desperately needed more than just the one goal from the four chances they got.
- Oilers went 58% in the faceoff circle tonight which is an impressive feat against the Stanley Cup champs. I’m looking for bright sides here, people!
THE FACE PALMERS
- Not the start the Oilers wanted as they allowed the opening goal less than three minutes into the first period. The Oilers got caught puck watching and Jakub Vrana found himself wide open in the slot and snapped a quick shot that made it through Cam Talbot for the first goal of the game.
- Moments after Vrana opened the scoring, the Caps got another gift in the form of blown coverage in the Oilers zone which allowed Smith-Pelly a wide open shot from the slot that he made good on. Bad zone coverage that couldn’t be bailed out with saves led to two goals that were almost similar in how they came together.
- Oshie got lost in the mix and Backstrom fed him a no-look past that gave him enough space to bring in some furniture. He restored the Capitals two-goal lead after beating Talbot high on the glove side.
- What happens when you give Ovechkin time and space on the power play? That’s right. Goals.
- Cam Talbot was back between the pipes tonight and it did not go all that well for the tender. In some cases, the team out front let him down with defensive blunders that gave the Capitals gifts from the slot, but there were also times where he simply got beat. He got better as the game went along but it was still too little too late. Even though I wouldn’t hang every goal on him, the Capitals clearly had the plan of shooting high on Talbot tonight because nearly every shot they took went for the top half of the net. Talbot finished his night with 19 saves and a .826 save%.
- For as good as the fourth line was on Saturday, they had their luck go the other way tonight. They allowed a pair of even strength goals against and they saw their ice time drop by about three or four minutes for all of them.
- To beat the Caps, the Oilers needed their PK to be perfect again and, unfortunately, that was just not the case. Caps went 1/2 on the night and there should be no surprised who scored.
- Gord damned #BeetCast is coming up and, as always, you can follow along over on my Twitter account.
|02:44||Washington||Jakub Vrana (4) ASST: Devante Smith-Pelly (2), Travis Boyd (1)||0-1|
|05:44||Washington||Devante Smith-Pelly (2) ASST: Travis Boyd (2)||0-2|
|10:24||Edmonton||PPG – Connor McDavid (10) ASST: Oscar Klefbom (7), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (12)||1-2|
|08:11||Washington||T.J. Oshie (7) ASST: Nicklas Backstrom (13), John Carlson (10)||1-3|
|10:41||Edmonton||Leon Draisaitl (8) ASST: Adam Larsson (5), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (13)||2-3|
|13:09||Washington||PPG – Alex Ovechkin (11) ASST: John Carlson (11), Evgeny Kuznetsov (12)||2-4|
He does. It’s ‘Henderson’.
— Freddy Krueger Mellencamp (@LateFiennes) November 6, 2018
I wonder if they could make it work with Koskinen playing the 1st 10 mins and theb Talbot can take over, kinda like the rays with their bullpen. Talbot takes too long to get going. He gives up so many early goals…
— Parallaxicality (@Jackaxx079) November 6, 2018
I thought this might amuse you! pic.twitter.com/jYNUlwMEP4
— Idealistic Pragmatist (@IPEdmonton) November 6, 2018
Beet-free for [ 0 ] game(s).
— Anthony Flynn (@anthonyjflynn) November 6, 2018
It’s been another action-packed seven days for our beloved Edmonton Oilers since we last recorded, and they finished their week with a 3-1 record which gave us plenty to talk about. We start things off by recapping the week that was, specifically going through the games against Minnesota and Chicago and talking about how sometimes the stats don’t always match up to results. With that in mind, Cooom drops a hot take on us about a major player being moved out of town, and we give our thoughts on whether or not it will happen. Major player? Leaving? Say it ain’t so, Cooom.
Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 11/05/2018 – 7:45 pm MT