The Day After 22.0: “If there’s a right way to win, that’s what it looks like”

Photo credit:Terrence Lee-USA TODAY Sports
Cam Lewis
5 months ago
It was starting to look like the spring of 2021.
The Winnipeg Jets took the lead late in the first period with a power-play goal and the score remained 1-0 through the second and into the latter part of the third. Connor Hellebuyck appeared to be well on his way to another shutout over the Edmonton Oilers.
And then the Oilers got a bounce.
Darnell Nurse threw a shot on goal from just inside Winnipeg’s blueline using a Jets defender as a screen and the puck bounced off of Hellebuyck’s glove and into the net. This was the kind of bounce the team wasn’t getting in October or early November.
Not long after tying the game at 1-1, the Oilers got an opportunity on the man advantage and Leon Draisaitl put them in front with a one-timer. Winnipeg pulled their goalie with just over one minute left on the clock and Ryan McLeod buried his first goal of the season into the empty net.
We’ve seen many tight games between the Oilers and Jets, but not often do we see Edmonton score three unanswered in Winnipeg after falling behind.
The Oilers played a strong, tight game to keep the score within one and their hard work was rewarded with a fortunate bounce that ultimately shifted the tides. This is the type of win the Oilers are going to need in the coming months to climb up the standings and into a favourable position come spring.
“If there’s a right way to win, that’s what it looks like,” goaltender Stuart Skinner said after stopping 25 of 26 shots in the win. “I thought the guys stuck with it all night. I thought we did a great job in both ends.”
Edmonton is now 9-12-1 on the season with 19 points through 22 games. They’ve jumped the Anaheim Ducks and Minnesota Wild in the standings and are five points back of a playoff spot, with the Seattle Kraken, Nashville Predators, Calgary Flames, and Arizona Coyotes ahead of them. The Oilers will be off until Wednesday and will return with a six-game homestand, a prime opportunity to make up some more ground.


What they said…

Head coach Kris Knoblauch on the Oilers’ win over the Jets… 
“I was very happy with our guys. There could obviously have been frustration. I thought we played pretty well for the first 40 minutes and could have had some goals. Their goalie played really well and a few missed chances just missed wide, but the guys didn’t deviate from the game plan and stuck with it. We got a little bit of a break on the first goal, but I think it was deserved considering how many opportunities we had.”
Defenceman Darnell Nurse on his game-tying goal…
“I was just trying to shoot through a screen and you never know what will happen. I’ve been a defenceman on the other side of those and sometimes you stiffen up and whatnot, so I was just trying to surprise them, get one on net and get it through the defenceman.
“I think the composure of the team was on full display there. For us to be down one in the first period and not open our game up and push for too much offence… it was a good sign of where our group’s going and I think we built a lot of confidence off this game.”
Goaltender Stuart Skinner on the Oilers finally getting a bounce…
“You’re hoping for that every time and every game, especially the way we were playing tonight. I think offensively we did a great job at getting pucks in. Helly made some incredible saves and obviously, they know how to play really good defence too. You’re just really hoping that at some point it’s going to happen for us, and fortunately, it did.”

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