Beyond the Boxscore: Oilers top guns give it their all, but it just wasn’t enough

Edmonton OIlers
Photo credit:Jim Rassol-USA TODAY Sports
Shane Stevenson
20 days ago
Nothing anyone can say will take the sting out of the loss for the Edmonton Oilers. After crawling back to give themselves a shot in Game 7, the Oilers wound up with a 2-1 loss.
The Panthers used the momentum of an early power play to get on the board first, but an inspired Mattias Janmark made sure the Edmonton faithful in Florida would have reason to celebrate. The Panthers then turned it on, specifically exiting the first period with a ton of momentum. Things levelled out in the second period, but the Panthers then got that bounce they’ve been waiting on off a Reinhart rush shot. It goes off a stick and in the back of the net allowing the Panthers to start playing suffocating hockey. Edmonton eventually did get mountains of pressure to end the game, but Bobrovsky came up big. The end result isn’t what you want, but it was one hell of a journey.
CF% – 46.2%, SCF% – 50.16%, HDCF% – 59.14%, xGF% – 63.44%
Corsi King – Mattias Ekholm (69.69 CF%) led the team in disparity while partner Bouchard (66.91 percent) led the team in total chances achieved. Roughly 23 minutes at 5v5 by the duo as Knoblauch lent on them – rightfully so they were a dynamite pairing all playoffs long. Connor McDavid (60.81 percent) led for all the forwards in overall shot attempts with usual suspects Zach Hyman (59.92 percent) and Leon Draisaitl (63.39 percent) right behind him. The top players for Edmonton came to play they just could not find that last goal. The last five minutes of the game was Bobrovsky making five-alarm saves every second stop. It was by no means an effort worth a scolding – they were one goal short of the ultimate goal.
Under Pressure –
Taken By Chance – Leon Draisaitl (66.26 SCF% // 76.66 HDCF%) was the only forward with more than five high-danger chances, getting involved in six. One player was involved in high-danger chances for with none against an I was not ever expecting that to be Cody Ceci (39.29 percent // 100 percent) but hey — credit where it’s due. Four players saw high-danger looks while achieving none, some concerning names in that group too. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (46.21 percent // 0 percent) and Darnell Nurse (20.94 percent // 0 percent) were the bigger of the names. Not being able to recover from the Nurse contract vs his impact will be a talking point over garage beers for a long, long time.
xG Breakdown –
xGF% – Ekholm rocking a 92.17 percent xGF% crushes my soul. The man clearly left everything he had on the ice – had an entire playoff run worthy of being called a bonafide top pairing defenceman – only to experience a Cup Final loss for the second time in his career. The Oilers’ big five were clearly the best players in white – McDavid (87.94 percent), Bouchard (87.46 percent), Hyman (83.67 percent), Draisaitl (71.79 percent), and Ekholm were the spearheads of all the Oilers momentum. Knoblauch had a tremendous feel of his bench, all the players having subpar nights (the fourth line, really) had limited ice time. Besides when your backs against the wall I would also double shift McDavid. I’m sure McDavid would also double shift McDavid.
Game Flow –
Game Score –
Shot Heatmap –
In The Crease – I have nothing but nice things to say about Stuart Skinner. The one light-duty goal against was something he’d been able to avoid for a long time but eventually, the team in front of you will give something up. He got Edmonton to within a goal of the Stanley Cup, he silenced a lot of hate and played tremendous hockey all postseason when the Oilers had their backs against the wall. He’s young yet and will continue to grow – many organisations would want a Stuart Skinner with this level of experience in their organization going forward.
Flashalytic’s 3 Stars –
1) Mattias Ekholm
2) Connor McDavid
3) Evan Bouchard
(Stats compiled from Naturalstattrick.com // Game Score from Hockeystatcards.com // xG and Under Pressure charts from Moneypuck.com // Game Flow and Shot Heatmap from NaturalStatTrick.com)

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