GDB +10.0 Wrap Up: This series is now a Best of Three
Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
20 days ago
Yet again, the Edmonton Oilers bounced back after a playoff loss.
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Just as they’ve done all playoffs, the Oilers followed up a frustrating loss with a strong performance and their second-round series with the Vegas Golden Knights is now knotted at 2-2.
The Oilers got goals from Nick Bjugstad, Evan Bouchard, and Mattias Ekholm in the first frame and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins put them up 4-0 in the second period with his first goal of the playoffs. The Golden Knights spoiled Stuart Skinner’s shutout in the third period but the rookie made 25 saves on 26 shots in the win.
This series is now a best of three.
PRESENTED BY BETWAY
Oilersnation’s player of the game: Stuart Skinner
After being pulled in Monday’s game, it’s nice for the 24-year-old goaltender to rebound.
He made quite a few big saves early in the game, including one where Mark Stone was alone in front of Skinner, who sprawled to make the save. Moreover, it led to Mattias Ekholm’s first goal in the playoffs.
Overall, Skinner finished with 25 saves on 26 shots for a .962 save percentage. He didn’t steal the game, but he was great.
Things worth mentioning:
Alex Pietrangelo needs to take a chill pill. You are your team’s best defenceman, you are going to get targeted with big hits. What you can’t do is slash with two hands up high on Draisaitl. That’s how you get suspended.
Evander Kane had a pretty big hit on Pietrangelo, which actually gave Ryan McLeod a good opportunity late in the game. The Knights took exception to the big hit, bouncing Kane around like a Plinko after the puck was frozen. This isn’t the first time Kane has taken a run at the Knights’ best defenceman, as he got his stick in his face in Game 3.
Darnell Nurse and Nic Hague were after each other all game, and this boiled over in the final minute as the Oilers’ defender looked for the Knight. He gave him a good beating, as you can see in the video below. The unfortunate part is that due to the instigator call in the final five minutes that Nurse was given, he’ll be suspended. However, there’ll be a review, and I don’t think it’ll be upheld.
Depth scoring came into play on Wednesday evening. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins scored his first goal of the playoffs for Edmonton’s fourth goal. As mentioned, Mattias Ekholm also scored his first playoff goal as an Oiler, and Nick Bjugstad also scored (and had a game-high nine hits). Connor McDavid was the only player with a multi-point night.
Evan Bouchard is breaking out. In his 10 games these playoffs, he has four goals (one was scored tonight) and 11 points. He’s really playing himself into a long-term contract, which the Oilers should immediately sign him to.
Klim Kostin may not have gotten on the score sheet, but man, he took one for the team. After slashing McDavid and giving the puck away to Nick Bjugstad for the opening goal, Shea Theodore decided to spear Kostin in the nuts. The Oilers promptly scored the second of the game, which also was the game-winner.
Game 5 is set for Friday at 8 PM MT. Let’s hope the game is as exciting as Game 4.
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