The Day After 71.0: Edmonton Oilers hold on to beat San Jose Sharks 5-4 in overtime
Photo credit:Perry Nelson-USA TODAY Sports
By Zach Laing8 months ago
They don’t ask how, they just ask how many — I guess.
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What a game it was Monday night as the Edmonton Oilers somehow managed to secure a 5-4 overtime win against the San Jose Sharks. It was far, far from a pretty performance for the team as a whole.
After a suspect first period tied at one, Kailer Yamamoto gave the Oilers a 2-1 lead 30 seconds into the first period. The problem? Two quick ones from the Sharks gave them a 3-2 lead halfway through the frame. Mattias Ekholm’s first of two got the Oilers back into it, however, and while Erik Karlsson’s second regained the Sharks lead in the second, Ekholm came up big again.
He sent the Oilers to overtime with just under four minutes left in the third period, and an electric overtime frame ended with Darnell Nurse blowing the doors off Rogers Place.
Here are a few things from the game…
The Oilers really seem to struggle in games like these and my lord is it frustrating. Last night was another where the Oilers just weren’t in it whatsoever for a good chunk of the game. After one, the Oilers controlled just 42.86 percent of the shot attempts and 44.81 percent of the expected goal share at even-strength.
Halfway through the second period, however, it all flipped on its head and the Oilers ended up running away with it.
After the game, Ekholm admitted these types of games are tough.
“We could’ve been a lot better tonight I thought,” he said, “but at the same time, these games are hard.
“You got to work yourself up, you got to get yourself going. We stuck it out. Obviously, we could’ve been better, but at the same time, it’s hard to win in this league. We’ll take it and move on.”
Ekholm himself, meanwhile, had a tremendous game once again for the Oilers. With a two-goal performance last night, he’s now up to three goals and nine points in the 10 games since he joined the Oilers. At 5×5 with him on the ice, the Oilers have controlled 54.83 percent of the shot attempts, 58.43 percent of the scoring chances, 59.95 percent of the expected goal share and 75 percent of the actual goals scored outscoring the opposition 18-6.
I mean, yeah… what a trade. He’s been incredible for the Oilers. Worth every penny.
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You can’t trust Jack…
It’s not solely on Campbell’s feet, but he sure didn’t help the Oilers, that’s for sure. This isn’t meant to be me piling on when a guy is down already, but you can’t talk about last night’s game without his performance being mentioned. It’s remarkable in a sense to see just how poorly Campbell has played this season. It’s legitimately almost hard to believe.
Really makes you think about all the ink that was spilled about the relative woes guys like Mike Smith and Mikko Koskinen had, hey? I’ve sure been thinking about that this season.
The defensive play wasn’t perfect last night for the Oilers. Far from it. Too many broken plays, but at the end of the day, Campbell still let seven goals pass him. Four of those counted, three were called back, one was saved off the goalline by Cody Ceci and a few shots hit the post. Campbell struggled to make the big saves all night and got bailed out by the video team in a big way.
Look at the Noah Gregor goal that got called back early in the third. Far from an easy play, but that’s one where you need a big save made. If that goal doesn’t get called back, San Jose takes a 5-3 lead and it’s a very, very different came. As I wrote about yesterday morning when it was announced Campbell would get the start, the Oilers will be at an interesting crossroads this offseason.
The video crew…
Big credit to Jeremy Coupal and Noah Segall in the Oilers’ video room. They went 3-for-3 in reversing San Jose Sharks’ goals. Here’s what head coach Jay Woodcroft had to say:
“We have two video coaches that do a really good job for us and we have a process we believe in,” he said. “We spend a lot of time studying what gets called around the league.
“We ask a lot of questions and in the end, when you do your work like that, when the pressure time comes, we have a process that we follow and tonight we were proven right on a few. it wouldn’t happen without Jeremy and Noah.”
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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