Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
Another McDavid Milestone
1 month ago
It’s no surprise at all that Connor McDavid would downplay and deflect attention about his latest accomplishment after leading the Edmonton Oilers to a 5-2 waltz past the Philadelphia Flyers with another dazzling display of skill last night. It’s what he does.
We know the storyline at Rogers Place. McDavid extended his points streak to six games with a goal and four assists, hitting the 900-point mark in 602 games – fifth-fastest in NHL history after Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Mike Bossy and Peter Stastny, all of them keeping a seat in the Hockey Hall of Fame warm for him.
McDavid is at 903 points today and will likely push 1,000 points by the time this season is done, but as we’ve come to know since he arrived from the Erie Otters on a Golden Ticket, another scoring title or another Hart Memorial Trophy isn’t what he’s about. That’s peripheral stuff that happens along the way.
With McDavid blowing out 27 candles on the birthday cake on Jan. 13, the reason he plays, the prize he covets most, is still out there. While there’s time for him to avoid joining a fraternity of great players who never sipped from the Stanley Cup – Stastny, Adam Oates, Dale Hawerchuk, Gilbert Perrault, Eric Lindros and Pavel Bure, to name six – McDavid’s career clock is ticking.
WHAT HE SAID
“It’s another nice milestone,” McDavid said when asked about his latest scoring feat. “One that’s just kind of along the way. A nice chance to reflect and look back on some of the work you’ve done and feel good about that.”
The Oilers have won six straight games, are 14-3-0 in their last 17 games and are 19-15-1 overall, leaving them just one point behind Arizona in the Western Conference’s second wildcard spot. That’s a real feat after a 2-9-1 start. Those are the numbers that McDavid is willing to have a conversation about.
“We’re still working our way out of the hole we created,” said McDavid. “It takes these stretches to get out of it. We’ve had a few good ones, and we need to keep it rolling. Some ugly times in this room, so we know what that’s like. We certainly like this side of it a lot better – winning games and feeling good about ourselves. It takes a lot of work and that’s what we’re doing.”
McDavid opened the scoring with the kind of brilliant footwork he’s made almost routine. His 900th point came on a sweet no-look backhand pass on Zach Hyman’s 2-0 goal. McDavid closed the show with a deft saucer pass to Ryan Nugent-Hopkins on the 5-2 goal. After a slow start by McDavid’s standards, he’s at 14-39-53, 10 points back of leader Nikita Kucherov.
THE BOTTOM LINE
“Yeah, it looked pretty easy for him,” said Kris Knoblauch, who coached McDavid with Erie in the OHL and has seen him go off like this before. “He was flying, making unbelievable plays . . . it never surprises me. I’m over that phase of him surprising me because he’s done it so much, so you just enjoy it.”
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