The Edmonton Oilers asserted their dominance over the Chicago Blackhawks with a 5-2 win on Saturday night. Stuart Skinner backstopped the team with 28 saves to get his record back up to .500. McDavid, McLeod, Yamamoto, Draisaitl, and Barrie had the goals for Edmonton while Philip Broberg picked up his first NHL point in his debut.
It was a fun one if you were an Oiler fan and I have all the details on Edmonton’s 13th win of the season...
Plenty of energy to be had to begin this one, perhaps due to a trio of players matching up against their old clubs. The Hawks got the game’s first nice chance as Stuart Skinner had to deny Patrick Kane from the slot.
Connor McDavid opened up the scoring with seven minutes left in the period after tapping in a Cody Ceci rebound. McDavid has a point in every game this season and the Oilers have the 1-0 lead.
They had a chance to extend that lead shortly after as the Hawks began a march to the box. Phillipp Kurashev and Jonathan Toews would both get caught with infractions to give Edmonton a lengthy 5-on-3 for 1:40.
Of course, they converted. A few smooth passes by McDavid and Draisaitl gave Tyson Barrie a clean lane to convert on a point shot. Edmonton opens up a 2-0 lead with more power-play time. Chicago would kill off the remaining penalty to keep the lead at two.
Chicago got their first PP chance soon after as Jesse Puljujarvi tripped up Seth Jones. It wouldn’t go well for the Hawks as Jones would serve up a juicy pass to send Kailer Yamamoto on a break which resulted in him ripping a short-handed marker over Kevin Lankinen’s glove. 3-0 Oilers.
The Oilers weren’t done yet. With just under a minute and a half left in the frame, Warren Foegele found a wide-open Ryan Mcleod in the slot who made a slick move to pot his second career NHL goal. Broberg nabbed an assist for his first NHL point and the Oilers opened up a whopping 4-0 lead less than a period into this one.
Chicago wouldn’t leave the period empty-handed. With just 19 seconds left as Alex DeBrincat redirected a point shot by Seth Jones to cut the lead to 4-1. That would be all for a very busy opening period.
The Oilers opened up the second with an absolutely amazing couple of shifts that pinned the Hawks in their zone for almost five minutes straight. Every line had extended shifts in the Hawks' end. Evan Bouchard had the best chance on the sequence but the crossbar prevented him from getting in on the goalscoring fun.
The Oilers would get a fantastic chance later in the period with the first line attacking on a 3-on-1. McDavid got the puck over to Puljujarvi but Lankinen made a sprawling save to keep the score 4-1.
Surprisingly, we ended the period with no further scoring. The Oilers got close to extending the lead and Skinner was solid. 4-1 Oil going into the third.
The Hawks continued to push to get back into the game in the third. After killing off an Oilers powerplay chance, Chicago came back with a 2-on-0. Kurashev would feed a fresh out of the box Alex Debrincat who would get his second of the game. 4-2 game with just over 10 to play.
Physical play started to ramp up after the goal. Jujhar Khaira caught McLeod with a solid hit behind the net and then Zack Kassian made a big hit of his own on Ryan Carpenter on the same play. Broberg was also active as he ducked an Erik Gustafsson hit and made one of his own a few seconds later.
The physicality paid off for the Oilers as Toews would go to the box after hooking McDavid. Unfortunately, that would be nullified by an interference call on Hyman. The penalty, again, wouldn’t be a problem for the Oilers as Draisaitl got sent in on a breakaway and adds to his league-leading goal total with 18 on the year. Oilers get the back-breaker and lead 5-2 late in the game.
Kassian had a fantastic chance on a cross-seamer on the following shift but Lankinen got over just in time to rob him blind.
- This is exactly the type of hockey game the Oilers have needed to play all season long. They finally put in a solid 60 minutes of hockey and didn’t look completely lost in their own end. I thought each line had its moments and executed its roles well. It was a pretty encouraging game albeit against a weak Blackhawks team. You only hope they continue this play in the next few games.
- Philip Broberg didn’t play a whole lot in his NHL debut but what he did play was impressive. He looked calm, cool, and collected for a defender in his debut and had a few really nice sequences on the night. I was especially impressed with his play in the defensive end of the ice. He picked up his first NHL point with an assist on the McLeod goal. It’ll be pretty hard to send him down if he puts in performances like this on a consistent basis.
- Stuart Skinner was absolutely solid in the Edmonton net once again. He faced a few high-danger shots early in the game which gave the Oilers a chance to open up a 4-0 lead in the first. Definitely wanna see more of him, but I suspect Tippett goes back to Koskinen for the next game.
- The third line was absolutely fantastic tonight. Foegele and McLeod played their best games as Oilers and it was really a treat to watch. Those two were running all over the ice and even connected on a goal in the first period. Lots have been said about Edmonton getting a legitimate 3C but I think McLeod could be just that. Kassian also had himself a decent game.
- When was the last time Edmonton had two short-handed goals in a game? I thought their PK was fantastic once again tonight while their PP struggled to get going...other than the 5-on-3 goal of course. 50% was never realistic anyways.
- Leon Draisaitl has 18 goals on the year. Amazing stuff.
- Connor McDavid has points in EVERY Oilers game this year and 25 straight going into last season. Again...amazing stuff.
- The Oilers remain the top team in the Western Conference as they jump ahead of the Calgary Flames with a record of 13-4-0 on the season! They will try to make it lucky #14 as they hit the road to the Big D to take on the Stars this Tuesday!