Edmonton came back from a two goal deficit to defeat the Canucks in a shootout.
Tonight’s victory was encouraging for a variety of reasons. Here are three.
- came back from a two goal deficit
- in Vancouver
- and went 2-2 in the shootout for the win.
I don’t know exactly how many times the Oilers came back from two goal deficits in 2011-12, but they did tonight, and they’re 1-0.
- ROOKIE PATROL – Both Justin Schultz and Nail Yakupov had pretty good NHL debuts. Yakupov had over 16 minutes of ice time, while Schultz had nearly 21. Both players were held off the scoresheet, but were able to get quality shots on Roberto Luongo.
- Ales Hemsky looked to be worth every penny of his extension tonight. He scored a pretty goal late in the third period to tie the game at 2, then played the hero in the shootout. Full marks.
- Jordan Eberle scored the first goal of the game on a backhand shot that was cleverly disguised as a laser beam. The goal brought the Oilers to within one goal of the Canucks with just over three seconds remaining in the second period.
- Devan Dubnyk passed his first test as this team’s number one goaltender. Dubnyk turned aside 27 of 29 shots (plus two more in the shootout) to get the W. He needs to start on Tuesday against the Sharks.
- Unsung but worth mentioning: Jeff Petry is quite good. Ladislav Smid was good. Potter had a giveaway and might be replaced with Fistric on Tuesday. Overall, the defence was worth watching.
Team gave Vancouver too many opportunities on the man advantage. The Oilers were shorthanded six times, but managed to kill off all six Vancouver opportunities. The Oilers were 1/5 on the man advantage.
The Oilers did go down by two goals. Instead of folding like a card table, they got a late goal in the second, and Doctor Hemsky scored with six minutes left in the third. Sam Gagner and Hemsky had the shootout markers, and that’s how the Oilers are 1-0.
The Oilers won in Vancouver. It could’ve been a 52 shot onslaught against the Oilers, and it still would’ve felt good. Tonight, the Oilers played well enough to win, and they didn’t have to rely on a superhuman effort from their goaltender.
The Oilers will host the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday at Rexall Place.
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