The Day After 10.0: McDavid, Draisaitl dominate Preds in 7-4 win
Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
By Zach Laing4 months ago
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Connor McDavid has put the rest of the NHL on notice.
The Rocket Richard will be his.
While there’s still lots of runway in the season, another dominant two-goal performance from the Oilers captain Tuesday night has him at 11 on the year. He’s pacing for… *checks notes* … 90 goals this season. I say he does it. 🙂
But in all seriousness, it’s been tremendous performance after tremendous performance this year for 97. It shouldn’t come as surprise as he might be the most advanced and most talented player to ever play in the NHL.
Last night was many others.
McDavid finished the night with four points en route to the Oilers’ 7-4 win over the visiting Nashville Predators — and don’t even get me started about Leon Draisaitl, who continued his reign against the Preds with a goal and five points. The latter’s new linemate, Evander Kane, chipped in a cool three-goal performance, too.
The pair continued their dominant play and they’re showing no signs of slowing down 10 games into the season. McDavid is now up to 11 goals and 22 points in 10 games, while Draisaitl has risen to five goals and 21 points in as many games.
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For the Oilers as a whole, however, there were more than a few tense moments. Like when 34 seconds into the game, a breakdown in the defensive zone led to Mattias Ekholm scoring an easy early mark. As quickly as the game started, the Oilers were behind the eight-ball. But Leon Draisaitl, who looked like he forgot the game started on the shift, had two beautiful primary assists on Evander Kane goals scored at the 4:14 and 7:25 marks of that first period.
The runaway comeback continued with Connor McDavid getting his first of the game, and then Derek Ryan getting his first of the year all before the intermission.
McDavid’s second came 7:26 into the third when right off a Draisaitl faceoff win he grabbed the puck and went top shelf on Juuse Saros.
While things got tense in the third with the Predators scoring twice to make the game “close,” Evander Kane ended up getting his hat trick in thanks to some unselfish passing from 97 and 29.
Edmonton struggled out of the gate this year. They went 2-3 scoring 15 goals (3.2/gp) and allowing 17 (3.4/gp). Now, they’re on a five-game win streak that has seemingly turned things around quickly.
They’ve got victories over the Pittsburgh Penguins, St. Louis Blues, Chicago Blackhawks, Calgary Flames, and now, the Nashville Predators. The Oilers have scored 24 goals (4.8/gp) and allowed 15 goals (3/gp) over that time.
Edmonton’s showing some good signs here. Their offense is coming to play with the third-best goals for per hour in all situations at 4.1, and while a 3.2 goals against per hour isn’t ideal, it’s right below league average. Lots of work to do, but there are promising signs.
A really tough test for the Oilers will come Thursday night. They’ll put their win streak on the line against the New Jersey Devils who have quickly become one of the toughest teams to play against in the league.
Zach Laing is the Nation Network’s news director and senior columnist. He can be followed on Twitter at @zjlaing, or reached by email at email@example.com.
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