THE BRIGHT SIDE
- @Connor McDavid tied the game (1-1) with a goal in the final 30 seconds of the period after he rushed the puck up ice and beat his former teammate, Matt Benning, with a burst of speed before firing the puck through Saros’ legs. As nice as that goal was, McDavid outdid himself in the shootout with a game-winning dangle that I’m pretty sure got the whole first row pregnant.
- @Evan Bouchard tied the game (2-2) for a second time after his point shot took a friendly bounce, deflecting into the net off of Ryan Johansson’s skate as he was battling with Derek Ryan in the slot.
- @Mikko Koskinen played very well against the Flames and the Canucks this week, and so I wasn’t exactly surprised to see him get another start against the Predators. While not as busy as his counterpart, Kostco was very good for the Oilers again and he made a bunch of big saves from right in tight. I know the Oilers outshot the Predators by a healthy margin, but I’d also suggest that Nashville had more from right in tight, and more often than not, Koskinen was up for the challenge. Koskinen finished the night with 28 saves and a .933 save%.
- @Darnell Nurse had himself another big night as he put in a mind-bending 28:47 to go along with an assist, four shots on goal, five hits, two blocks, and a takeaway.
- I don’t normally shout @Devin Shore out in the Wrap Up but I’m going to do it here because I thought he had a really strong game. For a guy that didn’t play much — he finished with 7:41 in TOI — he found a way to make plays on both sides of the puck and picked up an assist while also winning 50% of the draws he took.
- The penalty kill was excellent against Nashville as they were able to handle all three shorthanded situations they faced.
- I’m pleased to advise you all that we won the Corskis and outshot the enemy by a 46-30 total.
- Diving into the spreadsheets, the Oilers finished the night with a 56.16 CF% and a 52.12 xGF%.
- The faceoff crew will be excited to know that the Oilers finished the night at 54%% on the dot.
- Do me a favour and check out the latest episode of Better Lait Than Never and let me know what you think! Subscribe to Better Lait Than Never for FREE on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, and wherever else you get your podcasts.
THE FACE PALMERS
- Make it 11 straight games where the Oilers have allowed the first goal of the game. As Gregor wrote about in this morning’s game notes, this is a new franchise record and one that you certainly don’t want to have on your books.
- @Filip Forsberg opened the scoring (1-0) with a wrist shot from distance that made its way through traffic and beat Koskinen high on the blocker side. Seeing as the Oilers have the last change, I’m not sure why Tippett had his fourth line out against the Forsberg line but that’s the way she goes sometimes.
- @Matt Duchene restored Nashville’s lead (2-1) with a laser beam from the faceoff dot that beat Koskinen high on the glove side. I know some people were talking about another glove hand goal, but the bigger problem for me on this play was how Keith got caught on a pinch and Duchene had all the time in the world to pick his spot and rifle a shot.
- The power play struck out on three opportunities, which would have been unheard of back in October. Thankfully the boys were able to score some goals at even strength but it will be absolutely necessary for them to figure this out as we make our way down the stretch.
- As much as I love to watch the boys firing pucks at high volume, I’d love it even more if they also had guys crashing to the net while it was happening.
- I thought the boys got pushed around a little bit at times and I wonder how much having Kane in the lineup will add that flavour of play in our favour for once.
- Only one four-second shift for Bouchard in the bonus period.
— Mike Salame (@Mike_Salame) January 27, 2022
If I was the Oilers I would simply score first
— Surveyor Brett – Game Manager (@BLuchanski) January 28, 2022
Break out the new balances!!!
— Bobby Brizzle (@BobbyBrizzle) January 28, 2022
Dad right down Main Street in the family station wagon. No cigar.
— Robin Brownlee (@Robin_Brownlee) January 28, 2022