THE BRIGHT SIDE
- Zach Hyman opened the scoring (1-0) on the power play after a beautiful passing play from McDavid and Nugent-Hopkins set him up for a tap-in at the goalmouth. Hyman added another power play goal (6-1) midway through the second period after McDavid basically banked the puck into the net off of him as he was standing near the post.
- Only 45 seconds after Hyman got them on the board, Klim Kostin extended the lead (2-0) with a dangle to his backhand from in tight after a pair of one-touch passes by his linemates set him up with time and space to make a play. Only moments after Sprong got Seattle on the board, Kostin responded quickly with his second goal of the night (5-1) after deflecting Darnell Nurse’s point shot/slap pass perfectly through Jones’ legs from his post in the high slot.
- Only 39 seconds AFTER THAT, Darnell Nurse got the Oilers third goal (3-0) after trailing the play into Seattle’s zone, picking up a pass from McDavid in the high slot, and burying his shot up and over Grubauer.
- At the midway point of the first period, Jesse Puljujarvi put the Oilers up by four (4-0) after McDavid found him all alone in front of the net with enough time to Crockpot a roast. With the puck on his stick and miles of space around him, Puljujarvi did a nice job shoveling the puck through the goaltender for his 3rd goal of the season.
- Connor McDavid kicked the extra point on the touchdown (7-1) after he broke into the zone with time and space, ripping his shot through Jones’ five hole. The goal gave McDavid his fifth point of the night and it’s getting hard to even find the words to accurately describe how unbelievable he is. Can we just take a minute to appreciate how ridiculous it is that Connor McDavid has 72 points in only 37 games? He’s a cheat code, he is the Game Genie, he is the one. He is truly remarkable and we are so lucky to watch him on a nightly basis.
- How happy were you to see Stuart Skinner get a little bit of run support after he stole the show in a 2-1 win against the Flames on Tuesday? I mean, Stu has stood on his head for this team more than a few times, and that’s what made it refreshing to see the boys put up seven goals for him on the road against Seattle. Even so, Skinner still came up huge on more than one occasion, and even though he had a huge lead in this game, it doesn’t at all mean that he wasn’t busy. Skinner finished the night with 36 saves and a .947 save%.
- How about my boy Ryan Nugent-Hopkins locking in a four-point night, giving him nine points (3G, 6A) in his last five games? The Year of Nuge continues and I could not be happier about it.
- You’ve gotta give Dylan Holloway some love for picking up his first NHL fight against Vince Dunn after he chose to defend himself after Dunn connected with a few crosschecks that the refs seemingly had no interest in calling. Even though he’ll probably take the L in this fight, I love seeing the kid stand up for himself.
- I liked the way Jay Woodcroft spread out the minutes in a game when he had all kinds of goals to be able to do it. Up front, RNH played the most minutes at 19:07 (McDavid had 16:01) and I’m hopeful that will leave some gas in the tank for the boys tomorrow against Winnipeg.
- If there’s one thing I love it’s watching the Oilers punish their opponents with the power play, and the Seattle Kraken were the latest victim in their reign of terror. Even without Leon Draisaitl in the lineup, the boys finished the night at 2-for-2 on the man advantage and that makes me one happy blogger.
- Not to be outdone, the Oilers’ penalty kill was perfect in all three shorthanded situations they faced as the team continues to improve when down a man over the past few weeks or so.
- Tonight’s win puts the Oilers in third place in the Pacific Division, leaping over both Seattle and Calgary with 42 points on the year.
PRESENTED BY BETWAY
THE FACE PALMERS
- Daniel Sprong got the Kraken on the board (4-1) early in the second period with his sixth goal in his last eight games, and just like that, Seattle had some life.
- Brandon Tanev pulled the Kraken back to within four goals (6-2) on a scramble goal near the side of the net that reeked as much of garbage as any goal you’d see. Way she goes on these kinds of plays sometimes.
- I really dislike that we were with Leon Draisaitl who missed only his seventh game since 2016, meaning whatever kept him out of the lineup had to be significant. We saw what he did on one leg in the playoffs so I can only imagine what he’s battling right now to keep him out of this hockey game.
- The Oilers were outshot by a 38-32 margin but I think a lot of that was score effects as the Kraken tried to do anything they could to try and narrow the gap.
- Edmonton won only 45% of the faceoffs they took, but I guess I’ll give the boys a pass this time.
Zach Hyman (16) (Power Play)
Assists: Connor McDavid (37), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (24)
Klim Kostin (3)
Assists: Mattias Janmark (4), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (25)
Darnell Nurse (6)
Assists: Connor McDavid (38), Kailer Yamamoto (7)
Jesse Puljujarvi (3)
Assists: Connor McDavid (39), Zach Hyman (23)
Daniel Sprong (11)
Assists: Morgan Geekie (10), Ryan Donato (4)
Klim Kostin (4)
Assists: Darnell Nurse (14), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (26)
Zach Hyman (17) (Power Play)
Assists: Connor McDavid (40), Ryan Nugent-Hopkins (27)
Brandon Tanev (6)
Assists: Adam Larsson (11), Vince Dunn (15)
Connor McDavid (32)
Credit where it's due, was a (needed) Holland W.
— Loomiss (@Loom_Tunez) December 31, 2022
I CANT KEEP UP WITH ALL THE GOAL TWEETS
— Peter, not Parker (@peterjs__) December 31, 2022
— Captain Feltan (@Captain_Feltan) December 31, 2022
Klim Kostin fighting two guys at center ice is all the holiday cheer I need. @jsbmbaggedmilk
— Turner L. Watson (@TurnerWatson) December 31, 2022