logo

Instant Reaction: Oilers throw 45 shots on goal but Canucks win Game 3

Edmonton Oilers Vancouver Canucks
Photo credit:© Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
Ryley Delaney
1 month ago
There’s ugly games, and then there’s whatever the heck that was, as the Edmonton Oilers fell 4-2 to the Vancouver Canucks. The Canucks now have a 2-1 lead in the series.
For the second time in the series, the Oilers scored first as the second power-play unit took advantage of what little time they had. A fortunate bounce to Mattias Ekholm saw the left-shot defenceman score his third goal in as many games. He now has a three-goal streak.
Sadly, that was the only lead that the Oilers had, as it appeared that Brock Boeser scored his first goal of the game, beating traffic. However, it was later determined that it was deflected by Elias Lindholm and the credit of the goal was changed. 
Boeser actually scored his first goal of the game late in the first period, as he was left alone in the slot. Just a very ugly defensive breakdown, as the Canucks would never relinquish the lead.
Warren Foegele had an awful turnover with just over a minute left, putting the puck in the slot for a Canuck player to pick up. Boeser was still behind the Oiler defence, so when Darnell Nurse and Cody Ceci went to play the puck, it wasn’t that difficult for Boeser to score what appeared to be his hat trick goal.
Edmonton’s best period was the second period. There was a near goal, as the puck looked like it was going in, but it was indecisive. However, the Oilers would receive a power play and would score, as Leon Draisaitl scored from his office once again.
The Canucks would get their third power play of the game late in the second period, one of the softest calls in playoff hockey history. Exaggeration aside, Draisaitl was cross-checked twice during Edmonton’s first power play, and there was no call, so why was this called?
Lindholm scored his second of the game on the ensuing power play, as a fortunate bounce found its way into the back of the net to make it 4-2 for the Canucks. This was the game-winning goal.
Edmonton would score one with the empty net and the extra attacker on the ice, as the puck deflected off Ian Cole, the Oilers’ sleeper agent on the Canucks. Unfortunately, their rally fell short.

Things worth mentioning…

It was a brutal game for Stuart Skinner, who allowed four goals on 15 shots, eventually getting pulled for the third period. For the Canucks, Artūrs Šilovs saved 42 of 45 shots. Why can’t Edmonton get this goaltending performance every once in a while?
Of course, defence is also to blame, especially for goals two and three, as leaving Brock Boeser all alone in front of your netminder is a recipe for disaster. That Foegele turnover was ugly.
Once again, the refs were awful. It goes both ways, though. Not calling the cross-checks on Leon Draisaitl sets a precedent that teams can get away with. Why, then, were there three (actually four) cross-checking calls in this game, three of them weaker than the two on Draisaitl? Ian Cole’s cross-check on Evander Kane midway through the third period was soft.
Speaking of cross-checks… The “actually four” cross-check was called at the end of the game when Carson Soucy cross-checked Connor McDavid, although it was actually Nikita Zadorov. Where was the response from the Oilers? Why was it just a scrum with no real pushing? Your best player was dangerously cross-checked; show some passion and make Zadorov pay for it.
Plain and simple, the Oilers need to be better at five-on-five. None of their goals in this game were during five-on-five play, while Vancouver scored two at five-on-five. They need to take advantage of power plays, yes, but the Canucks are killing them at even strength.
Up next: The series will stay in Edmonton for Game 4, as the two teams will face off on Tuesday at 7:30 PM ET. This is all but a must-win for Edmonton because a loss will leave them down 3-1 in the series with two more games in Vancouver.

If you enjoy my content, you can follow me on Twitter @Ryley_L_D.

THE INSTANT REACTION IS PRESENTED BY BETWAY

Be sure to check out the latest NHL playoff odds with online sportsbook Betway.

Check out these posts...