Tonight’s matchup against the Toronto Maple Leafs features the return of the recently suspended Connor McDavid, just in time to face his cross-country foe, Auston Matthews. The Oilers went 1-0-1 in McDavid’s absence, and will be looking to build on their positive efforts in the last few games. Leon Draisatl scored two goals for the Oilers against the Predators on Monday in a shootout loss, and is now on pace for 50 goals this season (a feat the Oilers haven’t seen since Gretzky). Leon and Connor are split up to start tonight’s game, and the Oilers need them both to run wild on a Leafs team missing Nazem Kadri and Jake Gardiner to injury.
Let’s see what happens in the Oilers lone visit to Toronto this season.
Still looking for an answer as to why, when McDavid chips the puck in deep and Rielly literally puts both hands on Connor so he can’t skate past, that play isn’t a penalty? Alas, maybe we’ll never know. Rules are flexible, by definition.
Also, I feel like every game I’m covering these days includes a line or two about how Rieder *almost* scored his first goal of the season. Anyways, he almost did. Another prime opportunity and Andersen robbed him. The guy gets a million opportunities in these Top 6 roles and can never finish.
On the other side of the rink, Koskinen stoned Marleau who came in on a breakaway. 0-0.
After a nice dish from Lucic, Rielly hacks Currie as he’s in on Andersen alone and the Oilers are onto the PP. Leon then goes coast to coast, dangling Hainsey along the way, before kicking his rebound to himself and depositing it in the net. McDavid with the assist on Draisatl’s 39th and it’s 1-0.
After Muzzin nearly takes Chiasson’s head off in the neutral zone, Chiasson audibly slashes Muzzin in the wrist and gets the call. Oilers to the PK. After the powerplay concludes, Marleau finds a rebound in front of the Oilers net and slides it in. 1-1. The puck hit Koskinen, but then he couldn’t find the rebound sitting in front of him.
Cave hit from behind in behind the Leafs net, and guess what? No call. He’s fine at least. The Cave-Lucic-Currie line has looked pretty good so far.
Shots 16-8 Oilers.
Just over a minute in, and Marner deflects one in. 2-1 Leafs. Oops, and a little over a minute later, Johnsson finishes off a pretty passing play in front of Koskinen and its 3-1. The period is quickly running away from the Oilers.
Edmonton is scrambling, and Nurse takes a slashing penalty on Marner in front of the Oilers net. Nylander sneaks one by Koskinen, one that shouldn’t have gone in on a 6’7 goaltender, and that ends Mikko’s night. Stolarz is in. Three goals in 3:41 and that seems to be it.
Malone was injured after colliding with the boards awkwardly, and left the ice without being able to put much weight on his foot. Insult to injury. Right after that, Kapanen takes a run into the boards on an icing call – only played one more shift before heading to the room.
Cave follows up the Oilers poor play with an interference call on a pick play as he tried to spring Lucic for a chance. Looked pretty incidental to me, but no one asked. Leafs outshooting the Oilers 12-1 so far this period. Johnsson scores again. 5-1.
Chiasson rubs Matthews out on the boards, and he high sticks our prized UFA who couldn’t be dealt. Garbage play by the Oilers, and Draisatl forced into a penalty. Matt Benning does the same thing that happened to Cave in the first period, but it’s against the Leafs, so this time it is called.
What a brutal period for Edmonton. The game is over.
And right off the bat, Tavares snipes and it’s 6-1. Stolarz looks shell-shocked in the net. McDavid looks rather disengaged this evening, probably because teams are allowed to do whatever they want to him and his team has no sense of urgency. This guy is going to ask for a trade out of here soon, isn’t he?
And it looked like Malone was tossed for a hit from behind on Dermott, but he only went down the tunnel to the dressing room to come right back? Interesting, no penalty. Dermott left the game immediately, holding his arm and in a lot of pain.
RNH scores one for the Oilers, and it’s 6-2. Game officially over.
That was a rough one, folks.