THE GREAT TRADITION
The Oilers have had an issue with letting teams get ahead early. This didn’t happen tonight, as the game remained scoreless until early in the third period. Thomas Hickey made it 1-0 Islanders early in the third.
Hickey had time and space in front of Cam Talbot before getting a backhand off. It was 1-0 Islanders with two minutes gone, and it looked like that might be the only goal scored in the game.
And, it was the only goal scored in the game. Until Connor McDavid scored his 31st goal of the season with two minutes remaining in the third.
I had to re-watch this goal a couple of times to make sure that Connor McDavid didn’t specifically play the puck off of Islanders’ goaltender Christopher Gibson’s mask. Former Oiler Brandon Davidson looks like he’s got McDavid covered pretty well here. McDavid finds another gear, dips behind the goal line, and tries to put the puck out front. The puck bounces off of Davidson’s stick, off of the goaltender’s mask, and into the net. There’s some luck there, but McDavid is rewarded with his career high 31st goal by going to the net and making something happen. It’s 1-1 with under two minutes remaining, and that would carry to the shootout.
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins and Connor McDavid would score for the Oilers, while Jordan Eberle scored for the Islanders. The Oilers win. You can all relax now.
- Congrats to Ethan Bear on scoring his first NHL point, an assist on Connor McDavid’s third period goal. Ethan Bear played 19:55, fourth on the defence in TOI.
- Oh my God, there was a penalty shot in overtime. Matthew Barzal hooked McDavid after a turnover. It’s nice to see McDavid get a call, but let’s be real, that was about a 3 out of 10 when it comes to infractions committed on McDavid. McDavid had this one, but it figures a goalpost would be there to deny him the OT winner.
McDavid rings his penalty shot attempt off the post in OT. pic.twitter.com/gpx13Es2HU— NHL GIFs (@NHLGIFs) March 9, 2018
- Jujhar Khaira won over some more fans tonight after getting into it with Cal Clutterbuck after Clutterbuck took some liberties with Iiro Pakarinen. I’ve got a lot of time for Jujhar Khaira because not only can he take care of business, he’s a good player too.
- Thirty saves for Cam Talbot tonight, it’s good to see him looking like his previous self even as we’re playing out the string. Former NHL goaltender Brent Johnson had a string of tweets about how today’s goaltenders need a good backup to help starting goaltenders get some proper rest en route to the playoffs. In short, Cam Talbot ought not to be playing 70 games next year if this team’s serious about making a go of it.
- Absolutely no goals were scored on the power play. I really wanted to see a barnburner here.
- Connor McDavid needs 19 more points in 15 games to reach 100 points in back-to-back seasons. It goes without saying, but McDavid is what’s keeping this team from being a lottery team right now. I mean, they could still be a lottery team, but they’re a good ten points away from the cellar right now. So we got that going for us.
- Oilers face the Wild on Saturday. Three in a row?