The Edmonton Oilers were in San Jose to wrap up the California leg of their 4-game west coast road trip. Last time out, Edmonton shit pumped the lowly Anaheim Ducks to the tune of a 6-2 drubbing, and they were looking to do the same to another lowly outfit just down (or up?) the freeway. Jack Campbell was back in goal with Stuart Skinner still away from the team.
Edmonton had to kill a penalty almost immediately through a Dylan Holloway infraction, but they were able to do so without issue and eventually eased into a bit of a rhythm at 5v5. Once they did, they earned a PP of their own thanks to Nick Cicek’s foul on Klim Kostin. Edmonton’s league-best PP hopped over the SAP Center boards and went to work:
the birthday boy gets his birthday goal. connor mcdavid makes it 1-0. pic.twitter.com/7thMiaWtzM— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
Play continued for a few more shifts, fairly uneventfully, before the Oilers extended their lead with just under 2 minutes to play, thanks to a bit of fortune when the puck was passed into the danger zone to Kostin:
klim kostin doesn't care about unsustainably high shooting percentages. he makes it 2-0. pic.twitter.com/zMngoYVpSB— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
That’s how the first period finished, with Edmonton enjoying a 2-goal lead, a respectable 12-9 advantage in SOGs, and having an xGF% of ~58%.
San Jose experienced a bit of a push in the opening shifts of period 2, but it wasn’t long-lasting. Edmonton stabilized, drew another penalty — this time a Cicek trip on Ryan Nugent-Hopkins — and extended their lead:
connor mcdavid's second of the night makes it 3-0. pic.twitter.com/3EAbJNN61b— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
San Jose got the game’s next power play through a Darnell Nurse hook on Tomas Hertl, but Edmonton scored the only goal on the man advantage for their fifth SHG of the 2022-23 season:
ryan nugent-hopkins joins in on the fun making it 4-0. pic.twitter.com/FMFKVA2vWJ— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
Edmonton threatened to really pile on, drawing another penalty as Nurse’s was expiring, but they couldn’t find a fifth and negated the remainder of it with Holloway’s second penalty of the evening. Still, San Jose couldn’t make a dent on their own PP, and Edmonton made them pay for it — again — almost immediately after it expired:
this is a runaway. leon draisaitl makes it 5-0. pic.twitter.com/0QnskGyebo— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
Fortunately for the hosts, the period was only 20 minutes long, and they were eventually given about 17 minutes of reprieve via the second intermission. Edmonton carried a 5-0 lead, a 27-17 lead on the shot clock, and a healthy advantage in all the critical fancies into the break.
Edmonton controlled the Corsis for the first 2-3 shifts of the period, but San Jose got the best chance of the sequence and forced this wonderful save from Jack Campbell:
take a bow, jack campbell. what a save. pic.twitter.com/fsx9NnIN4E— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
The Sharks then drew the period’s first penalty about ~35 seconds later as Holloway took his third — yes, third — minor of the night. Once again, Edmonton’s PK was resolute, and they escaped without conceding.
Edmonton drew another PP of their own just before the midway point of the third, but they couldn’t score either.
It didn’t matter, because they scored 2 in 32 seconds shortly after. First, through Jesse Puljujarvi:
a flick of the wrist from jesse puljuarvi makes it 6-0. pic.twitter.com/OfkzQabXYM— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
Then, through Ryan McLeod:
ryan mcleod finds twine, too, as the oilers keep pouring it on. 7-0. pic.twitter.com/1T7jtCSKZw— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
An absolute shellacking. Get that varnished. San Jose nabbed themselves a consolation marker a couple of minutes later, but I ask the audience: Who Cares?!
a matt benning point shot is tipped home breaking jack campbell's shutout bid. pic.twitter.com/2A6dtVs5YZ— zach (@zjlaing) January 14, 2023
Former Oiler Matt Benning got the primary assist on this — his 18th assist of the year, mind you — so I guess that’s cool. Good for him.
The last few minutes came and went without much to report, but obviously by then the game was well in hand, and with Edmonton playing again on Saturday night, the primary objective was avoiding anything stupid before the final buzzer. And they did. 7-1 final with a healthy lead in all the major categories of interest. A solid beating.
Nothing like playing the worst two teams in the division — by a margin — to get themselves right a little bit after a really frustrating stretch that lasted far longer than they could afford. Hopefully that serves them well as they begin the stretch drive toward the playoffs.
Connor McDavid is 26 years old, on pace for the best season in essentially my lifetime, the Oilers have 2 other scorers within the league’s top-8 (Draisaitl and RNH), and the Oilers are a wildcard team as of this writing. It’s not good enough, whether they scored 13 goals in their last 2 games or not.
Las Vegas to wrap up the road trip. Tonight. 8PM MST.