After an egregiously poor outing against the Los Angeles Kings, I must admit that I didn’t have high hopes for this one. The Oilers mustered just sixteen shots against a hapless Kings offence that struck on four occasions. Fortunately, it was quite the opposite on Sunday night. For starters, the Oilers scored all of the goals. The Oilers burst out to an early lead. The Oilers received quality goaltending from Cam Talbot.
The Ducks now have an eight game losing streak, which ties them for their franchise worst streak. They had some hideous expansion years, it’s hard to believe that this is the worst it’s been.
Want to see some goals? Good, you should.
Sometimes your generational talent needs three whacks at the puck in order to solve a problem. The third time is the charm here as Connor McDavid scores his 24th of the season to put the Oilers up 1-0 early in the first. This goal is about the greasiest goal you’ll find, but I’ll take a goal any way they come. Zack Kassian and Caleb Jones pick up the helpers, but credit to #97 for making it all happen at the end.
Nine minutes later, it would be Jesse Puljujarvi putting the Oilers up 2-0.
Extra points to Cam Fowler, who decides that tying up Puljujarvi after the goal is somehow beneficial to his club. Ducks goaltender John Gibson is set for the save, but it’s no match for Puljujarvi’s backhander. It’s Puljujarvi’s fourth of the year, and things are cooking for the Oilers.
Kyle Brodziak had the dagger. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins deserves a gold star after all of this. First, he denies entry into the Oiler zone. Then he carries the groceries to the front of the net.
Kyle Brodziak flicks it behind a bewildered Jon Gibson, and it’s a shorthanded goal. The Oilers are up 3-0 late in the first, and I’m tingly all over. There’s no way that the Oilers can give up this lead after 20 minutes, is there?
Not tonight, anyways.
Boy, scoring goals is fun. I kinda wish we could do this more often. Leon Draisaitl smashes home a rebound that was off the stick of Caleb Jones midway through the second period. The Oilers are up 4-0 midway through regulation, and that’s how it would stay.
Sorry for the grainy pic - This was 10x more dangerous than anything that happened to McDavid in LA, this could have been bad. These are the ones that require a major response no matter the situation. This can’t happen without a major ruckus of some sort following. pic.twitter.com/Odd2EL3kjS— Ryan Rishaug (@TSNRyanRishaug) January 7, 2019
- Ryan Rishaug is 100% on here. McDavid has already missed significant time in his career due to a broken collarbone. While I can’t prove intent from Hampus Lindholm, this is a super dangerous play with no call. This is where Milan Lucic is supposed to come in and politely tell Hampus that this sort of chicanery isn’t going to stand. I got that right, yeah?
- Kris Russell is back, and that pushes the newly acquired Brandon Manning off to the sidelines. Maybe if he plays meaner, he’ll get back into the lineup.
- Is Caleb Jones one of the Oilers’ top four defencemen right now? Two assists for the freshman and almost 20 minutes of ice time.
- Cam Talbot looking fine last night with 39 saves for his first shutout of the year. Talbot played in relief of Mikko Koskinen after Koskinen allowed three goals on eight shots last night
IN THE PACIFIC
Things would be a little rosier if the Oilers would’ve made it a game against the Kings on Saturday night, but we’ll forget about that for now. The top 3 looks all set in the Pacific with half of the season gone. The Sharks are holding on to third place by a nine point margin, while the Flames and Golden Knights are hanging out with 56. Terry Jones noted that Edmonton’s chances of getting into the playoffs ride a lot on that second wild card spot that’s currently being held by Anaheim. With Anaheim currently in free-fall mode, the Oilers can make some hay with a win tomorrow against the Sharks.