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Photo Credit: Andy Devlin/NHLI via USA TODAY Sports

How Did Oilers Score Their Goals…

Yesterday we broke down every goal the Oilers allowed against the Blackhawks, and today we will look at all 15 goals the Oilers scored.

GAME ONE…

1st Goal For –

Oilers scored on their first shot of the game. The Blackhawks gifted them a PP by having too many men on the ice. The Oilers didn’t get a shot in the first minute, but then they moved it around and Connor McDavid fired a rocket short-side top shelf. Nice shot.

2nd Goal For –

Again on the powerplay. Even Jonathan Toews will lose a puck battle, as RNH gets it, moves it behind the net to McDavid who slides it to a wide open Leon Draisaitl. Easy goal for him with Crawford sprawling out of position.

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3rd Goal For –

Another powerplay goal. James Neal hits the post on his backhand, then somehow McDavid’s shot didn’t go in the empty net before finally Neal slams it home.

 

4th Goal For –

With the extra attacker on, they get the puck to the point, Klefbom fires a low shot and RNH deflects it home, while Neal is around the net.

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The Oilers didn’t score at 5×5 and barely created any chances. They were not ready to play and it showed.

GAME TWO…

1st Goal For –

Oilers came ready to play. McDavid wins opening faceoff. Nugent-Hopkins misses his pass to McDavid in the neural zone, but then Duncan Keith gives it away up the boards, Darnell Nurse keeps it in and sends it down low to McDavid who scores 19 seconds into the game.

2nd Goal For –

A ridiculous play by McDavid. Easiest assist of Nugent-Hopkins’ career. For McDavid to juggle the puck at full flight and then finish with a perfect backhand was amazing. One of the best goals we will ever see at full speed.

 

3rd Goal For –

Hawks turn it over in the neutral zone as Nylander can’t handle the pass. Klefbom brings it in, dishes to Draisaitl, who looks for Yamamoto, it ricochets to Tyler Ennis and he just puts it on net. No deflection, not really a screen, but Crawford misses it. Watching the replay again, I’m still surprised Yamamoto didn’t get an assist. If he didn’t push it back to Ennis, then Kane made a soft play to push it to Ennis.

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4th Goal For –

Powerplay goal. Chiasson sticks with it, pushes it to Nugent-Hopkins so wraps it around the boards to McDavid. His pass hits Duncan Keith and goes in. Lucky bounces are a big part of playoff hockey.

5th Goal For –

Jujhar Khaira dumps in it and pressure Crawford, who fans on it, and James Neal makes him pay.

6th Goal For –

Later in the same shift Neal brings it into the zone, battles his way to the net, the puck squirts free and Chiasson buries it. Two Oilers v. three Hawks and Oilers get the puck. Nothing pretty about it, just taking puck to the net and earning a bounce. Hard work can create bounces.

The Oilers were ready from the opening puck drop, and even when they let the Hawks tie it at three they didn’t fold. Chicago only had seven shots in the third with the Oilers protecting a one goal lead, and then Neal and Chiasson scored 30 seconds a part to secure the win.

 

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GAME THREE…

1st Goal For –

The Hawks opened up the scoring 30 seconds earlier, but the Oilers bounce back right away. Hawks win the faceoff, but Yamamoto pressures behind the net to cause the turnover, which goes to Ennis and he slides it cross-crease to Draisaitl. Tenacity on the forecheck leads to the goal.

2nd Goal For –

Highmore with a bad turnover to Draisaitl, but then he recovers and blocks Draisaitl’s shot. It ricochets to the blueline and Matt Benning just fires it on goal, and it hits Highmore’s stick, changes directions and forces Crawford to just kick it out and Draisaitl rips it home. Oilers capitalize on a bad giveaway.

3rd Goal For –

Draisaitl picks up his third point. Late in the second on a powerplay his pass to Neal in front doesn’t make it, but it bounces to McDavid and he doesn’t rush, instead shows great patience to grab it, pull it away from Crawford’s pad and put it upstairs.

Oilers started the third leading 3-2. They did a decent job protecting the lead for the first 15 minutes. Ennis was injured in the second period, and Dave Tippett promoted Andreas Athanasiou up to Draisaitl’s line and basically ran three lines in the third period. Zack Kassian and Riley Sheahan had one shift at the four minute mark of the third, and basically didn’t play for 10 minutes, but then Tippett put them both on the ice. I’m curious why he didn’t just stick with his three lines that late in the game.

GAME FOUR…

1st Goal For –

For the third game of the series the Oilers score on their first shot of the game. Josh Archibald scores 45 seconds in. Watch Toews on this play. When Archibald whips it around the boards to McDavid, Toews makes a split second decision to go up the ice, but McDavid controls the puck, and the cross seam is wide open and he fires it to Archibald who rips it home. Even really good defensive players make wrong decisions and look for offence. Toews and Saad were cheating and puck watching and it cost them.

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2nd Goal For –

The powerplay expired two seconds before Nugent-Hopkins slammed home the rebound to tie the game. Wasn’t a pretty goal, but RNH stayed around the crease, something the Oilers didn’t do enough in the series.

This game was tied 22 minutes into the game, but the Oilers couldn’t score the rest of the way despite outshooting the Blackhawks 34-16 over the final 38 minutes. They needed that desperation and tenacity much earlier, as Crawford slammed the door and won Chicago the game.

WRAP UP…

  1. Edmonton scored one goal that went in off a Hawks player, while Chicago had four.
  2. One deflection goal.
  3. They scored two rebound goals.
  4. One off a goalie miscue.
  5. One where Crawford whiffed on it.
  6. The rest where high skilled finishes, either finishing off a nice passing play, or a great individual effort.

Edmonton scored enough goals to win. Sure, you’d like the third line to chip in a goal, but it isn’t odd for a third line to play four games and not score once.

The Oilers have the high-end skill to score highlight reel goals. I don’t see that changing with McDavid and Draisaitl in the mix. They could use a few more greasy goals. Banging home rebounds, or having traffic in front and deflecting pucks home.

I think the Oilers bottom six need to improve on having more bodies in front of the net, and the blueline needs to get more pucks through to create some chaos off a rebound. Having someone who is good on deflections is a bonus. Often a simple play can lead to a goal, simply be redirecting the puck.

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But the offence wasn’t the Oilers issue in this series. Defending was.

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