Friendly reminder that Connor McDavid is an Edmonton Oiler. Final Score: 6-3 Oilers
With the Oilers’ first loss of the season out of the way, I was coming into tonight’s game with the expectations of another ‘W’ on the board. Not only did the Flyers play last night, yeah, I know that doesn’t matter all that much in today’s NHL, but they’ve also lost their past two games and I was hoping that the Oilers would be able to find a way to kick them while they’re down. As I wrote on Monday morning, finding ways to drop a people’s elbow on teams that are struggling is going to be vitally important for making it back into the playoffs when April rolls around, and the boys had another chance to make that happen against the Flyers. I wanted to know if they would be able to learn from that game against Chicago and use the lesson to keep Philly’s losing streak alive rather than giving them a boost the other way. I’m looking for this team to develop a killer instinct, ya know?
So when the game started with a big goal by Leon Draisaitl, I thought my dreams of watching killers on ice was finally beginning to unfold. I could feel it. I could taste it. Even when the Flyers were spoonfed enough power plays changes until they were able to tie the game, I felt in my bones that the Oilers would find the juice they needed to pull this thing out. I’ll admit, there were moments in the second period when the Flyers had the Oilers on the ropes and I wasn’t so sure that about how this thing was going to play out, but the boys found a way to weather the storm long enough to turn the ship around. If this was last season, they would have buckled under that second period pressure, coughed up the lead and found a way to blow it, but this ain’t the same rodeo we were watching a year ago. This October, the Oilers are bending without breaking and there was no greater evidence than what we watched this evening.
It may not have been a perfect win, but all I see are another two points in the bank. Corsi be damned.
THE BRIGHT SIDE
- Leon Draisaitl opened the scoring just over a minute into the game with a filthy wrister that beat Carter Hart on the blocker side. Since one goal isn’t nearly as fun as two, Leon scored another in the second period after being fed a loose puck behind the blue line and using that quick backhand of his to bury it past Elliott. I don’t care if you guys get tired of it, but I plan on pumping Leon’s tires as often as I humanly can this season because the dude is an absolute stud that finds himself on a seven-game point streak.
- Ethan Bear has played so well to start this season and to see him get rewarded with a big goal in the first period that gave his team back the lead was awesome to watch. Bear has been getting better and better since cracking the roster out of basically nowhere and I cannot cheer for the kid enough.
- Considering Connor McDavid is basically lightning on ice, I’m actually surprised the Oilers don’t try the alley-oop play with him more than they do. Tonight, Kris Russell thought he’d give it a go and flipped the puck towards centre ice and McDavid smashed the turbo bought and easily caught up to it, finishing the play with a top-shelf snipe. On top of his incredible goal, Connor was all over the ice and it seemed like everything he touched ended up in the back of the net in one way or another. The guy was absolute magic. I mean, what else can you say about a five point night (the third of his career)?
- Ryan Nugent-Hopkins didn’t have a goal yet this season despite a plethora of good chances, but he shattered that drought tonight with an absolute beauty on the power play. Nuge is mastering that little half-deke snapshot from the left side and he used it to perfection when he roofed a laserbeam past Carter Hart in the second period.
- How many of you expected Brandon Manning to score tonight? Stop lying, you never would have seen that coming. Even stranger was the fact that the blast was set up by Connor McDavid, a strange twist given their history and the fact that the goal came against the team that he spent parts of seven years with. What strange journey has led us here?
- Mikko Koskinen was handed the net tonight for the third time and I was looking for him to keep building upon the two quality starts he’s had so far. Against New Jersey, I’d argue that Koskinen was one of the best Oilers on the ice despite what his stats say and I was hopeful for another strong showing. Much to our collective delight, Koskinen was great in net and he was arguably the biggest reason the boys were able to pick up the two points. From start to finish, Koskinen was fantastic and he finished his night with 49 saves and a .942 save%.
- The Oilers’ power play was big again tonight as they were able to cash in on both of their chances. Isn’t it amazing what can happen when your team scores with the man advantage?
THE FACE PALMERS
- Right as Kevin Quinn and Louie were talking about Jakub Voracek being unable to get anything going offensively, he goes and scores a power play goal to tie the game up at one. I blame the broadcast booth. Voracek added a second goal in the third period after the Oilers took a pair of careless penalties that gave the Flyers a lengthy 5-on-3 that the visitors were able to convert on.
- Philadelphia got a second goal late in the third period when this game was all but finished, but I guess I have to include it in here, huh? Oskar Lindblom got his stick on a puck that was on its way to the net and the deflection slipped through Koskinen.
- The Flyers came out like a house on fire in the second and had it not been for Koskinen then this game could have easily gone the other way. The Oilers need to find a way to limit the lulls in their play because that 10-12 minute stretch was ugly to watch.
- Ugly third period for the Oilers as they allowed themselves to get sloppy, likely because of the five goal lead but still… can’t let that happen, boys.
- Why are the Oilers taking so many Too Many Men penalties this year? Seems like they’re getting one almost every night so far and I’m not a fan.
- Speaking of penalties, the Oilers took too many of them tonight and they were lucky that the Flyers weren’t able to do more damage than they did. The Flyers finished the night at 2/6 with the extra man.
- Getting outshot 52-22 is not a great look regardless of what the score was.
- I legitimately feel a little bad for Carter Hart as he got pulled in his first-ever start in his home town. That said, I assume this kid is going to torch us for the next decade or more so I won’t feel too sorry for him, but you have to think he had bigger dreams for his first time playing in front of friends and family.
|01:13||Edmonton||Leon Draisaitl (5) ASST: Connor McDavid (9)||0-1|
|07:36||Philadelphia||PPG – Jakub Voracek (1) ASST: Claude Giroux (2), Sean Couturier (2)||1-1|
|14:52||Edmonton||Ethan Bear (1) ASST: James Neal (1), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (5)||1-2|
|12:34||Edmonton||Connor McDavid (5) ASST: Kris Russell (1), Oscar Klefbom (7)||1-3|
|14:32||Edmonton||PPG – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (1) ASST: Leon Draisaitl (9), Connor McDavid (10)||1-4|
|16:26||Edmonton||PPG – Leon Draisaitl (6) ASST: Connor McDavid (11)||1-5|
|03:40||Edmonton||Brandon Manning (1) ASST: Connor McDavid (12), Zack Kassian (3)||1-6|
|15:20||Philadelphia||Oskar Lindblom (3) ASST: Jakub Voracek (1)||2-6|
|17:42||Philadelphia||PPG – Jakub Voracek (2) ASST: Ivan Provorov (3), Claude Giroux (3)||3-6|
He won't get to 65 goals being this lazy.
— Tyler Hardeman (@wunderbar) October 17, 2019
BEAR CLAW!!! pic.twitter.com/QTHpqox6zV
— McSlammin (@samakehurst91) October 17, 2019
— Steven Fiddler (@sfiddler007) October 17, 2019
Someone call Steven Segal – THE OILERS ARE UNDER SIEGE
— Wanye (@WanyeGretz) October 17, 2019
“24-pack of JOLT cola between periods Boys!!”
— Jayson Gagnon (@hiprock74) October 17, 2019
Beet-free for [ 1 ] game(s).
— Anthony Flynn (@anthonyjflynn) October 17, 2019
This new shirt is a steal of a deal and you won’t have to trade an overpriced fourth-liner to get one. Click the link here to buy
Source: NHL, Official Game Page, 10/16/2019 – 10:20 pm MT