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All the Kings can do is be annoying and cheap, Oilers cruise to 7-4 win in Game 1

Oilers vs. Kings Game 1
Photo credit:Baggedmilk
baggedmilk
11 days ago
Is there a better way to start the third round for the Oilers vs. Kings than a 7-4 dummying by the home side at Rogers Place? Absolutely not, friends. Even with the trio of flukey/own goals, the Oilers were by far the better hockey team for most of the night, earning their first Game 1 win since 2017.

ZACHARY MARTIN HYMAN

I know I write about Zach Hyman a lot in my post-game articles, but how can I not talk about the way he just cannot stop scoring goals? Not only did he finish the year with 54 on the campaign, but he kicked off the post-season in style with a Game 1 hat trick that sent Rogers Place into a frenzy. I’ve been fortunate enough to be in the building for a few hat tricks, but I don’t know that I’ve ever seen that many hit the ice for that long. The place was going bananas.
Either way, Hyman finished the night with three goals and an assist, and with a little bit of luck, he could have easily had two or three more. ZMH was all over the puck from start to finish, and the only thing the Kings could really do about it was hack and slash the puck off his stick. I couldn’t think of a better way to kick off the Oilers’ Cup run than with a Hyman hatty that basically blew the roof off the building. What a hockey player this guy is, and we’re so damned lucky to have him.

CONNOR McDAVID, ONE-MAN APPLE FARM

What can you say about the five-assist night for Connor McDavid other than to say it was a masterclass in playmaking and that we should all feel grateful for witnessing such brilliance? In only 18:47 in TOI, Connor McDavid picked up five assists, four of which were primary helpers. McDavid was carrying the puck so well in Game 1 that it almost seemed like he was luring the Kings to him like a moth to a flame before simply dumping it off to a wide-open teammate.
However, a big part of the reason his teammates were open was the wizardry McDavid was pulling off with the puck. I’m thinking specifically of the two spin-a-rama assists he sent to Hyman that basically set the 50-goal man up for tap-ins. On both of those goals, McDavid was able to spin off his check, find enough open space to make a play, and put the puck on Hyman’s stick with precision. Even though I’m only talking about two of his assists here, it was just that kind of night for the captain. He was remarkable.

ALL THE KINGS CAN DO IS HACK AND SLASH

Am I crazy to say that the only way the Kings can compete in this series it to try and steer it into the ditch? I mean, the Oilers simply outclassed them for extended stretches in last night’s game, and had it not been for LA’s willingness to be cheap, they wouldn’t have been a factor at all. There was the Trevor Moore takedown on Vinny, the breakaway slash on Hyman, the countless crosschecks in front of the net, but that was really all they could do.
If the Oilers are going to win Game 2 and beyond, they’re going to have to find a way to stick to their game and ignore the noise that LA tries to heap upon them. I thought the boys did a pretty good job of letting them run around without reacting Monday, but they’ll need to be extremely patient as the series wears on because I can only imagine the Kings are going to get worse as we go. Based on what I saw last night, LA isn’t in the same league as the Oilers skill-wise, but they’re emperors in the realm of being cheap and dirty.

OTHER THINGS WORTH MENTIONING

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-The Oilers’ power play with lethal in Game 1, cashing in goals on three of four opportunities with the man advantage. On the penalty kill, the boys killed off both shorthanded situations they faced to sweep what was a crucial special teams battle in Game 1.
-I hope we got our fill of unlucky goals against because three of the Kings’ four goals were flukes. Two went off Oilers d-men before bouncing into the net, and the fourth came after Cody Ceci’s stick blew up in his hands and his panic reaction was to sweep the puck right into the slot. That game could have been 7-1 with a little luck and a little more awareness.
-The ‘Tal-bot, Tal-bot’ chant that was happening all night was deafening. I know Cam Talbot used to be our former friend — he still holds the Oilers record for most wins in a single season — but he wasn’t treated overly friendly last night. The fans were all over him from basically the moment the puck dropped, and the chants didn’t stop until the game was over. It’s gonna be a tough season for Cam here in Edmonton.
-The people went bananas when they showed Klim Kostin on the big screen with his old jersey draped across his shoulders.
-What kind of trash human is Trevor Moore for the dirty ass play that saw him basically dive at Vinny’s knee when he was nowhere near the puck? I know the refs tagged him for two minutes for tripping, but that play is suspendable, in my opinion, and the NHL is a joke if they give him anything less than a game. A fine does not do it here.
-Do I love that that the Oilers won 55.6% of the faceoffs? Yes. Yes, I do. You knew it was coming and yet you read all the way here anyway, and I respect it. Faceoffs forever.

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