The Oilers got burned by giveaways and an inability to get a save, fall 4-3 in Game 3

1 month ago
After coming back from three separate one-goal deficits in Game 2 to win it in OT, the Oilers returned home to Rogers Place with a chance to take their first series lead and to put all of the pressure back on the Canucks. Instead, the Oilers threw everything but the kitchen sink at Arturs Silovs, but they couldn’t outscore their mistakes, lack of depth scoring, and inability to get a save.


Can someone else please show up in this series outside of Connor McDavid, Leon Draisaitl, and Zach Hyman? I mean, we’re three games into this thing now, and only three forwards have goals. Hyman has scored, McDavid has scored, and Draisaitl has scored—that’s it. All of the other goals have come from defencemen, and I don’t think I need to explain to anyone reading this why that’s a problem. It’s almost like watching last year’s playoffs all over again. Unless the Oilers’ top line gets the job done, everyone else is basically just out there killing time.
Considering the Oilers are supposed to have a high powered offence, it’s pretty damned inconvenient how everyone else seems to disappear at the most important time of the year. Outside of Warren Foegele, who had three shots, not one player outside of the first line had more than a single shot on goal, and that’s a pretty damning stat considering the team put 45 shots on net. I am still trying to figure out what the answer is here, but all I know for sure is there are nine forwards that really need to get going and do literally anything offensively to help their team win.


I’m going to start this off by saying that I know the Oilers gave the puck away like crazy, that they couldn’t break out of their own zone in the first period, and that they were outhit like mad — all of those things are true — but that doesn’t change the fact that Stuart Skinner allowed goals on 27% of the shots he faced. Four goals on 15 shots. Four. How are you supposed to win anything with goaltending like that?
In a game where the Oilers outshot their opponent 45-18, they lost by a 4-3 score. That’s unbelievable to me. And yes, I also know that a bunch of those shots came from the outside as the Oilers were trying to pull themselves back from being down on the scoreboard, but you will never convince me that this wasn’t a goaltending issue. Again, I know there were turnovers, mistakes, unfortunate penalties, and every other excuse we can come up with, but the bottom line, for me, is that we couldn’t get a save when we needed one.
Our old pal, Jonathan Willis, had the following stat that blew my mind: Stuart Skinner has made 20 postseason appearances. His career playoff save percentage is .881, the worst of any Oilers goalie to play even one full game. In this series, Skinner has allowed 11 goals on 54 shots, which is 5.27 goals allowed above expected and good for a .793 save%. With even .900 goaltending — remember, the league average is usually around .910 — the Oilers would easily be up 3-0 in the series, but instead, we’re talking about being down 2-1.


-Carson Soucy should probably be suspended for cross-checking Connor McDavid in the throat, and I don’t care that Zadorov put him off balance before it happened. Then again, we all know the NHL doesn’t care about protecting star players, so I’m guessing nothing comes from it at all.
-If only the Oilers got a little bit of luck on the four posts they hit last night. Sometimes, an inch makes all the difference, and don’t I know it to be true.
-In Game 1, the Oilers scored on their lone power play and killed all three of Vancouver’s PP chances. In Game 2, each side was given three power plays and scored on one of the three. In Game 3, the Oilers scored on 2-of-4 powers play chances, which you might think is good until you read that the Canucks scored on 2-of-3 opportunities with the man advantage. Sad trombone.
-I was hoping that Adam Henrique getting into Game 2 meant his lower-body injury was getting better, but I’m not so sure anymore after the Oilers’ big deadline acquisition was forced to miss Game 3. Henrique only played 11:38 on Friday night in Vancouver, and it’s a shame that he got banged up because I truly love his two-way game.
-Connor Brown got into the lineup as a result of Adam Henrique’s lower-body issue, and I was looking for him to play much better than he did on Wednesday. Despite playing only 7:35 in TOI, Connor Brown ended up in the box, didn’t register a shot, and generally looked lost each time he was out there. Needless to say, I was looking for a whole lot more in his second playoff appearance, but it didn’t really happen. In 8:02 of TOI, Connor Brown’s stat line is all zeroes. No points, no shots, one hit.
-Not to say that I didn’t have a blast going to the games in Vancouver — Friday night’s win was electric — but it just felt right to be watching the boys play in our own bar. No one screamed in my face just because of the jersey I was wearing, no one challenged me to a fight because their chirp sucked, and the vibe at Rogers Place was immaculate. I’ve been lucky enough to attend playoff games in a few different cities now, and I truly mean it when I say that there’s no place like home.
-You know I love faceoffs, and the Oilers simply have not won enough of them through the first three games of this series. In Game 3, Edmonton got dominated on the dot once more, winning only 42.4% of the draws they took.



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