Almost everything went right for the Edmonton Oilers on Sunday night. Even the stuff that didn’t go quite right, t’aint no big thing.
The Oilers finished the season with a solid 5-2 victory over the Vancouver Canucks at home, giving them 103 total points on the season. After finishing the 2015-16 season with just 70 points (and only 31 wins), the Oilers pulled a 33 point improvement in 2016-17. Almost nobody suggested that the Oilers were capable of 90 points, much less 103.
The much-maligned Jordan Eberle scored three times en route to Edmonton’s victory, earning him first star honours for the night. Eberle’s three goals give him 20 on the year coupled with 51 overall points. Eberle himself would likely tell you that he’s disappointed, but a lot of people are going to forget a lot of things now that the club is slated to play their first playoff game in eleven years.
Laurent Brossoit got the start, and he turned aside 15 of 17 shots en route to the Oilers win. I would’ve bet you a doughnut that Talbot would’ve gotten the nod again as the Oilers were playing for the Division, but Brossoit played well enough for the win.
Connor McDavid had two assists en route to his 99th and 100th point of the season. What a year it’s been for the first overall pick in 2015. McDavid (30-70-100) is the first Oiler to score 100+ points in a season since Doug Weight did it in 1995-1996 (104 points). No other NHL had 90 points. Sidney Crosby and Patrick Kane each had 89. Maybe next year, gents.
The only blemish? The Oilers finished with 103 points, but the Kings couldn’t put the Ducks away. Anaheim’s 4-3 overtime victory ensured their fifth consecutive Division Title, and they’ll open their playoff series against the Flames this week.
IT’S BEEN A LONG TIME
You can live with that disappointment. You’ve been living with disappointment for a decade now, so you’re not going to be too upset about which playoff opponent this club faces on Wednesday. That playoff opponent? The San Jose Sharks. The Oilers have home ice advantage over these San Jose Sharks, and games one and two are on Wednesday and Friday. You’ll make it, I swear. Rogers Place will be louder than an airplane taking off on Wednesday night, and it’s been a long time coming.