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FINAL: Edmonton 5, Pittsburgh 2

Oilers overcome uneven effort to defeat Penguins on home ice

Pittsburgh Penguins v Edmonton Oilers Photo by Andy Devlin/NHLI via Getty Images

Coming off a Saturday night win against the Vegas Golden Knights, the Edmonton Oilers took on the Pittsburgh Penguins for their first game in the last 5 days. The Penguins are 18-2-4 vs the Oilers since the 2000-01 season.

The Oil’s lineup vs the Pens tonight:

Hyman-McDavid-Kassian
RNH-Draisaitl-Puljujarvi
Foegele-McLeod-Puljujarvi
Benson-Ryan-Sceviour

Russell-Barrie
Lagesson-Bouchard
Niemelainen-Broberg

Koskinen
Skinner

The big story here is, with no practice time, Markus Niemelainen making his NHL debut. He wore #80 to begin the game. This comes with Cody Ceci being in the NHL’s COVID Protocols, and Darnell Nurse and Duncan Keith remaining out with injuries. Koskinen gets the start after a strong performance in Nevada on the weekend.

In a cool moment, Kris Russell was awarded with a special BELT BUCKLE to commemorate his latest achievement: most blocked shots in NHL history.

First Period

To begin the game, officials missed an easy call on Pittsburgh, after Warren Foegele was driven headfirst into the boards from behind. Otherwise another slow start for Edmonton, who are struggling to find their first shot of the game.

YOWWWW Zach Hyman scores again! Connor McDavid with the great defensive play in his own zone translates into a chance at the other end, and Hyman scores on Edmonton’s first shot of the game. 1-0 for Edmonton. The Penguins have dropped 11 of 12 when getting scored on first this year.

On a non-penalty, Sceviour draws a phantom hooking call on Letang. The Oilers put up a pair of shots, but are unable to beat Jarry on the powerplay.

After their PK, Jake Guentzel extends his point streak to 11 games on a cross ice pass from (former Oiler draft pick) John Marino. 1-1.

With more good defensive play, McDavid and the Oilers turn it over from the Pens in their own zone and take it in on a 2 on 1, with Hyman scoring his second of the game to give the Oilers back the lead.

Right after the goal, Zucker is off for hooking. The Oilers log a few great chances, but are once again unable to solve Tristan Jarry with the man advantage.

Second Period

A hard pass goes off Zach Hyman’s skate at the Pittsburgh blueline, and the Penguins turn that turnover into a goal at the other end. Teddy Blueger with a tying goal. 2-2.

William Lagesson is off for two, delay of game (puck over glass). The best chance of the Pittsburgh powerplay is actually for the penalty kill, with Hyman going in all alone but unable to score.

Benson to the box for goalie interference after blowing up Tristan Jarry, though Jarry fully extended himself into Benson’s path and acted like he got shot with the hit. Oilers back to PK.Halfway through the game, the shots are 22-7 for Pittsburgh and the Oilers haven’t had much to offer, and the makeshift defense is struggling greatly.

Third Period

The Oilers open the third period with a Kailer Yamamoto tip which sneaks past Tristan Jarry, giving the good guys a 3-2 lead. The bad news: Jesse Puljuljarvi left the game as injuries continue to pile up for the Oilers.

Letang takes a healthy whack at Yamamoto, and the Oilers are back to the powerplay. Beyond John Marino taking a slapshot off the family jewels, the PP ends early after Hyman interferes with Pettersson. On the 4 on 4 play... Draisaitl finds a streaking McDavid on a wicked backhand sauce pass, who then slides it over to Evan Bouchard for the tap in.

And MCJESUS makes an unbelievable move in the neutral zone, streaking into the Pittsburgh zone and finding Zach Hyman on the goal line for his first career goal. SIKE the Oilers were offside. No goal and it remains 4-2. Bummer about all the hats lost.

McDavid puts in the empty netter to make it 5-2. Oilers now 9-1 on home ice this season.