logo

Talking points from Game 3 versus the Stars

Edmonton Oilers Darnell Nurse
Photo credit:Yannick Peterhans-USA TODAY Sports
Liam Horrobin
23 days ago
The Edmonton Oilers dropped Game 3 last night on home ice. The defeat came after leading 2-0 thanks to first period goals from Zach Hyman and Connor McDavid, but the pushback from Dallas in the second period gave Edmonton all kinds of trouble. A hat trick from Jason Robertson and goals from Wyatt Johnston and Miro Heiskanen sealed a 5-3 win and a 2-1 series lead for Dallas.
Many questions are now being asked about the Oilers and their ability to close out games. Additionally, the blue line was a mess last night, and one of their captains played a huge role in why. Adjustments need to be made heading into Game 4, but before getting there, let’s see what happened in Game 3 first.

The Second Period

After a dominant first period, the Oilers completely fell apart in the second period. Whether that was due to Dallas pushing back or the Oilers collapsing doesn’t matter from Edmonton’s perspective because it was terrible. The Stars scored three goals in less than four minutes and allowed 12 shots without countering even once. Edmonton managed to pick it up towards the end when Adam Henrique tied the game, but that period allowed Dallas to regain momentum.

Stuart Skinner

Stuart Skinner wasn’t the reason the Oilers lost Game 3, but he didn’t help prevent it either. The first three goals came in quick succession, and many agree they weren’t his fault. He made great saves throughout, with the most notable coming against Mason Marchment on a breakaway, which would’ve made it 4-2 for the Stars. However, Jason Robertson’s hat trick can’t go in. Granted, the team in front of him fell apart, but at that moment, Skinner needed to prevent the final mistake. Overall, Skinner has gone toe-to-toe with Jake Oettinger, but that extra save has been needed a couple of times.

The Oilers’ Power Play

The Oilers’ power play has vanished, and it’s not just happening in this series. In the final three games versus the Vancouver Canucks in Round 2, Edmonton’s power play went one for nine, with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins getting the lone goal in Game 7. Granted, they’ve only had five attempts in three games against the Stars, but there hasn’t been any production yet. The Oilers are an offensive team that expects their power play to execute nightly, and it’s not happening. Limited attempts will do that, but we saw what they could do with only one power play against the Los Angeles Kings in Game 4. Enough of the extra passes and more shots on goal.

Darnell Nurse

When you get paid $9.25 million per year, fans will put you under the microscope on a nightly basis. That’s precisely what happens to Darnell Nurse, and last night was no exception. The Oilers’ defenceman was on the ice for the game-tying and winning goals. While not directly his fault, Nurse is struggling to make positive contributions at five-on-five at either end of the ice. Through the playoffs, he’s -12 with only two assists. His reads need to improve, his plays with the puck need to improve, and his gap control needs to improve. Nobody is asking Nurse to be an elite defenceman, which he is evidently not, but the team needs him to step up his game because they’re in a hole without him.

PRESENTED BY FINNING CANADA

Improve productivity and efficiency with equipment you can rely on. Check out the extensive inventory on new, used and rental equipment to find the right solution to meet your unique needs. Invest in the future of your business. Click here for more information.

Check out these posts...