Sunday, October 17

Oilers 3, Canucks 2 (SO) – Late game moxie proves point, makes up for serious mistakes

The Canucks erased a 2-0 deficit in the third period to score a point at Edmonton

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There was no need for a special public service announcement in the Vancouver Canucks locker room on Wednesday.

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A ‘Please stay alert’ approach was imperative as they opened the regular season against the Oilers in Edmonton to begin a six-game road trip. Topping his to-do list was minimizing the damage that the dynamic duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl can cause on any given night.

McDavid had 49 points (16-33) in 31 previous career meetings with the Canucks, while linemate Draisaitl had 40 (15-25) in 35 games. The ominous task of eliminating the top two scorers in the National Hockey League last season – they combined for a striking 189 points (64-125) in 56 games – was tempered by another reminder that they can be contained.

In the first game of the 2020-21 season in Edmonton, the Canucks earned a 5-3 victory thanks to two goals from Brock Boeser and limited McDavid and Draisaitl to one assist before any fans in the coronavirus pandemic protocols. .

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NEXT GAME

Friday

Vancouver Canucks vs. Philadelphia Flyers

4 pm, Wells Fargo Center. TV: Sportsnet One. Radio: AM650


Against a packed Rogers Place Wednesday, the Canucks knew the effort would be difficult to replicate, especially if McDavid and Draisaitl activated the fuse.

“It’s hard to do,” admitted Canucks winger Alex Chiasson, a former oiler, before the puck fell. “I will try to help with some ideas that I know and keep them off the list. I know it’s too much to ask. “

He was right in what the pair contributed, but the Canucks perked up in the third period to erase a 2-0 deficit that stole the show. First, it was an Oliver Ekman-Larsson point shot that drifted off Ryan Nugent-Hopkins’ stick before Quinn Hughes took the short side over Mike Smith to force overtime.

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In the extra session, Mike Smith stole Tanner Pearson on a backhand opportunity before Elias Pettersson nearly made his way for the winner when the Canucks fired 38 shots. The problem was finally resolved in the shootout where Kyle Turris scored in the fourth round after Bo Horvat and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins also scored.

Here’s what we learned when the Oilers got goals from Jesse Puljujarvi and Zach Hyman, but the Canucks made a point:


Vancouver Canucks goalkeeper Thatcher Demko (35) is scored by Jesse Puljujarvi (13) of Edmonton Oilers during NHL's first period of action in Edmonton on Wednesday.
Vancouver Canucks goalkeeper Thatcher Demko (35) is scored by Jesse Puljujarvi (13) of Edmonton Oilers during NHL’s first period of action in Edmonton on Wednesday. Photo by LA PRENSA CANADIENSE / Jason Franson /THE CANADIAN PRESS

TWO MISTAKES, TWO GOALS

Broken covers on the first goal and then giving the Oilers lethal power play a chance after a bad penalty kick was a bad combination on a night with little room for error.

On the first goal, McDavid started a revealing passing sequence in the first period. When Chiasson pulled away and allowed Darnell Nurse to come in from the spot, his rebound was easily deposited by a discovered Puljujarvi.

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To his credit, Chiasson was denied to come off the wall and then to the side of the net in an Elias Pettersson crossover power play in the second period. And in the third period, Chiasson had another stopped power play opportunity.

The second goal hurt me a lot. The Canucks were called up by too many men on the ice in the middle frame and a tick-tac-dough sequence showed that penalties cannot be taken against the Oilers. McDavid spotted Draisaitl and his cross-fold and cross-fold ice plate for Hyman was a touch count.


Zach Hyman of the Edmonton Oilers shoots at Vancouver Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko during the second period at Rogers Place on Wednesday.
Zach Hyman of the Edmonton Oilers shoots at Vancouver Canucks goalie Thatcher Demko during the second period at Rogers Place on Wednesday. Photo by Codie McLachlan /fake images

DEMKO DELIVERY THE GOODS

While the Canucks demonstrated good speed and pace early on, it was Thatcher Demko who looked calm and straightforward to the records to set the tone of direction before the Oilers finally turned up the heat.

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In the opening period, the starter made six stellar saves: left pad on Nugent-Hopkins, Nurse’s stick save, a slap from Puljujarvi and a shot from Hyman and then two to the side of the net to keep the Oilers out of the net. board after Bo Horvat. took iron on a getaway opportunity.

Demko finished with 32 saves.


Elias Pettersson (40) of the Vancouver Canucks and Kyle Turris (8) of the Edmonton Oilers battle for the puck during the first period of NHL action in Edmonton on Wednesday.
Elias Pettersson (40) of the Vancouver Canucks and Kyle Turris (8) of the Edmonton Oilers battle for the puck during the first period of NHL action in Edmonton on Wednesday. Photo by LA PRENSA CANADIENSE / Jason Franson /THE CANADIAN PRESS

PETTERSSON DANCES, PLATES

The skilled Swedish center looked fit in the middle of the season after missing the last 30 games of last season with a hyperextended wrist injury suffered on March 1 in Winnipeg.

It didn’t take long for Pettersson to show he had pace despite playing just two preseason games after his contract extension was finally reached. In the opening period, he made his dekes and danced to the net in an early turn and then displayed sublime play-making ability in slot traffic to find Ekman-Larsson in a pinch.

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Pettersson was also a key cog on a power play that applied pressure, but couldn’t finish enough by hitting 1-of-5 despite 10 shots over Smith. Pettersson looked great at fifth lead, but Smith swallowed his quick shot. The veteran stopper entered the contest with a 4-0-0 record against the Canucks last season and a .937 save percentage.


Tyson Barrie of the Edmonton Oilers collides with Tanner Pearson of the Vancouver Canucks during the first period at Rogers Place on October 13, 2021 in Edmonton, Canada.
Tyson Barrie of the Edmonton Oilers collides with Tanner Pearson of the Vancouver Canucks during the first period at Rogers Place on October 13, 2021 in Edmonton, Canada. Photo by Codie McLachlan /fake images

MAN’S BIG BURROUGHS

If Kyle Burroughs wasn’t noticed in his Canucks debut, it was supposed to be a good thing.

It meant the Vancouver native wasn’t making mistakes or struggling with coverage. However, it was noted by the efficiency with which he moved the pucks, by the way he held his head up to get shots from the point, especially when he broke a puck to find Horvat at the top of the fold, and had the guts to shoot out. the blue line to make something happen below.

He matched well in a pair with rookie Jack Rathbone and what was evident was the calm in which he made exit passes, smart puck decisions and blocked shots. For former triple-A bantamweight member of the Langley Eagles and WHL standout with Regina Pats, it was all night.

OVERTIME – Tyler Myers jabbed from the spot in the second period and rocked Duncan Keith with a sharp corner kick that bloodied the veteran defender.

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