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Sports Player grades: Oilers pump home five goals but still find a way to lose to Wild

13:25  13 december  2019
13:25  13 december  2019 Source:   edmontonjournal.com

Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19?

  Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19? Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19? It’s easy to forget this with the way the agonizing 2018-19 season ended, but the Oilers were riding high at this time last year. After 32 games, the 2018-19 Oilers had 17 wins and 15 losses. This year, after 32 games, the 2019-20 Oilers have 18 wins and 14 losses. After Ken Hitchcock took over the Edmonton Oilers in mid-November 2018, that 2018-19 edition of the Oilers went on a solid run, winning eight of 11 games, culminating in a 6-4 win over the Colorado Avs on Dec. 11. But then came misery for Hitchcock and the Oilers, a long stretch of games where they simply lacked the defensive skill and depth to survive.

The Minnesota Wild scored in bunches in a 6- 5 victory to hand the Oilers their third-straight defeat on Thursday at the Xcel Energy Center. Marcus Foligno and Ryan Donato answered twice in succession to elevate the Wild to a 4-2 lead heading into the third period, where the Oilers mounted a comeback.

The Oilers surge after falling behind by three goals in the opening 20 minutes, but can't weather the storm in a Video: EDM Recap: Kassian scores two, Oilers lose , 6-3. What's next. The Oilers hit the road to face the Minnesota Wild on Thursday. The game can be seen on Sportsnet Oilers and

Oilers 5, Wild 6

For the third consecutive game the Edmonton Oilers battled back from a multi-goal deficit to tie the score, but for the third straight game they couldn’t get the next one, resulting in their first three-game winless streak of the season. Thursday’s meltdown in Minnesota was particularly tough to take, as the Oilers pounded home 5 goals, stayed out of the sin bin and held their opponents to just 26 shots, but couldn’t get a save and fell to the Wild, 6-5 in regulation.

Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19?

  Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19? Can these Edmonton Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19? It’s easy to forget this with the way the agonizing 2018-19 season ended, but the Oilers were riding high at this time last year. After 32 games, the 2018-19 Oilers had 17 wins and 15 losses. This year, after 32 games, the 2019-20 Oilers have 18 wins and 14 losses. After Ken Hitchcock took over the Edmonton Oilers in mid-November 2018, that 2018-19 edition of the Oilers went on a solid run, winning eight of 11 games, culminating in a 6-4 win over the Colorado Avs on Dec. 11. But then came misery for Hitchcock and the Oilers, a long stretch of games where they simply lacked the defensive skill and depth to survive.

Oilers team scope: The Oilers clawed their way back from a three- goal first-period deficit at home against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday, but a A season-high three power- play goals allowed to Carolina knocked the Oilers penalty kill out of the top- five and into eighth place in the NHL (84.6

Oilers team scope: The Oilers clawed their way back from a three- goal first-period deficit at home against the Carolina Hurricanes on Tuesday, but a A season-high three power- play goals allowed to Carolina knocked the Oilers penalty kill out of the top- five and into eighth place in the NHL (84.6

It was a totally weird game in which we at the Cult of Hockey recorded just 14 Grade A scoring chances , 7 for each team, in the lowest-event game of the season. However the combined 11 goals made it the highest-scoring affair to date (tied with Game 2).

Edmonton’s scorers showed up for this one, with Leon Draisaitl and Connor McDavid each scoring his 20th of the season, James Neal his 15th, with additional goals from the bottom six forwards (Gaetan Haas) and the defence (Oscar Klefbom). On most nights, that would have been enough.

This wasn’t most nights. In a game where Wild stopper Kaapo Kahkonen was playing just his 4th NHL game and Edmonton vet Mike Smith his 590th, the advantage such as it was went to the younger man. It was a game where the Oilers could have got a point with even one big stop; that said there were some ugly defensive breakdowns along the way. Opportunity lost, and a hockey game along with it.

Staal, Kunin help Wild recover to beat Oilers 6-5

  Staal, Kunin help Wild recover to beat Oilers 6-5 Staal, Kunin help Wild recover to beat Oilers 6-5Staal made it through the morning workout without any issues and Minnesota was happy to have its top-line centre back in the lineup against the Edmonton Oilers.

The two Oilers connected on a power- play goal in the second period, and McDavid scored a third-period goal that briefly tied the game in the third period With the game trending the wrong way , it was Staal who stopped the bleeding with a one-timer blast that beat Mike Smith glove side to give the Wild

We just have to find a way to finish off games like this. … At times I feel real comfortable, but then somehow it just finds the back of the net. Rantanen’s two goals gave him 16 in his rookie season, and Joe Colborne matched MacKinnon’s two assists, setting up Compher and Bourque’s goals .

a group of people running in the snow: ST PAUL, MINNESOTA - DECEMBER 12: Darnell Nurse #25 of the Edmonton Oilers and Jordan Greenway #18 of the Minnesota Wild throw punches during the second period of the game at Xcel Energy Center on December 12, 2019 in St Paul, Minnesota.© Hannah Foslien ST PAUL, MINNESOTA - DECEMBER 12: Darnell Nurse #25 of the Edmonton Oilers and Jordan Greenway #18 of the Minnesota Wild throw punches during the second period of the game at Xcel Energy Center on December 12, 2019 in St Paul, Minnesota. Player grades

a drawing of a face© Provided by Edmonton Journal

#4 Kris Russell, 4. The only Oiler not to be charged with a minus, Russell was nonetheless ineffective at moving the puck and spent much of his time mired behind his own blueline, as on-ice shot attempts of 8 for, 17 against attest.

#6 Adam Larsson, 7. Played a strong game with Klefbom in what was undeniably Edmonton’s first, and best, pairing. Oilers outshot the Wild 14-7 during Larsson’s 23 minutes at evens. The big defender won a lot of battles, moved the puck effectively, hit a post with an outside shot, and earned a primary assist when he fired a low point shot that Haas was able to tip home. Made 0 mistakes on Grade A scoring chances.

Oilers’ moment of reckoning has arrived after third straight loss

  Oilers’ moment of reckoning has arrived after third straight loss The Edmonton Oilers’ moment of reckoning has arrived. They are the last team in the NHL to lose three games in a row this season. Now we’ll find out whether this roster can dig in, turn things around, and stem the tide. The post Tim Thomas talks about the concussion that changed his life appeared first on Sportsnet.ca.The time when they can continue to believe they are that team that doesn’t let the bad karma hang around. That they find a way to turn losing streaks around before they get out of hand.

James Neal scored with the goalie pulled to bring the Oilers within a goal , but they couldn't find the equalizer in a 6- 5 loss to the Wild . EDM Recap: Kassian scores two, Oilers lose , 6-3.

The Oilers added a power play goal mid way through the second to make the score 3-1 but that was as close as they got. The Oilers seemed to wake out of their funk for the third period though as they out shot the Avs 12-7 but couldn't find a way to get the puck past Petr Budaj.

#10 Joakim Nygard, 3. Failed to build on his recent strong showings, and found himself bumped down from the first to the second line about midway through. Had some decent moments carrying the puck but generated zero shot attempts. In the middle of nowhere in d-zone coverage on the 1-1, and a split second late on the all-important 5-4 goal that broke the back of the Oilers’ comeback.

#15 Josh Archibald, 4. Zero shot attempts and about that much impact in a game the penalty killers were needed for just 34 seconds. Did have a couple of hits.

#16 Jujhar Khaira, 3. His coach called him out for a brutal offensive-zone turnover in the dying seconds of the first that led directly to a jailbreak, a breakaway and a Minnesota goal that sent the Oilers to the dressing room down a goal despite what had been a pretty good period. Did make one good defensive stop later, but contributed nothing offensively. Don’t be surprised if he draws the short straw next game.

#18 James Neal, 7. Played his 800th NHL game and marked the occasion in style with a goal, an assist and a +2 night. The apple was a bit of a cheapie but the goal well-earned, a good finish from close range to give the Oilers a glimmer of hope in the game’s final minute. In between times he was stopped on a clear breakaway by Kahkonen in one of the game’s truly important saves. (It was a short list.)

Edmonton Oilers searching for answers with Leafs up next

  Edmonton Oilers searching for answers with Leafs up next "We're not going to sit here and be in a grump about it.""Just that we've done a lot of good things well," answered goalie Mike Smith when asked about Tippett's message. "There are parts of our game that on a consistent basis need to be better. We're not going to sit here and be in a grump about it.

It’s been 20 NFL seasons since the Oilers moved to Tennessee, then retired the brand. The franchise's players and fans still feel the loss. Wochit.

Wild .com's Dan Myers gives three takeaways from the Wild 's 6- 5 win against the Edmonton Oilers at Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul on Thursday night. Kunin's late game-winning goal pushes Wild 's home point streak to 11 games Thursday at Xcel Energy Center.

#23 Riley Sheahan, 4. Similar to linemate Archibald, 0 shot attempts and not a lot good or bad in 9 minutes of action.

#25 Darnell Nurse, 4. Spilled some blood for his team and drew some from the other side in a spirited physical game. Landed a couple of big hits and took care of business in a nasty fight with big Jordan Greenway, with whom he feuded all night. Chipped in an assist on McDavid’s 4-4 goal. But had lots of troubles on the defensive side of the puck, struggling to contain Greenway at the edge of the crease on the 1-1, making a questionable line change seconds before the 4-2 tally (he was far from the only Oiler at fault on that ugly sequence), and then coughing the puck in the corner on what wound up being the game winner. Altogether he was officially on the ice for 4 goals against and had barely sat down on the bench for a fifth. Appeared to jam a wrist or shoulder in the late going. 4 shots, 4 hits, 5 minutes in penalties in just 17:11 of high-event hockey.

#29 Leon Draisaitl, 7. Played his best game in a while, leading the forwards in ice time (21:57) and shots (4). Jammed one home on the powerplay to tie the game at 2-2. Made a fine play on the side wall that led directly to McDavid’s 4-4 goal, and was involved in the early build-up to Neal’s 6-5, though three other Oilers subsequently touched the puck in both cases. Fired a dangerous one-timer from a low angle that forced a strong save. Was solid defensively and was charged with 0 mistakes on Grade A chances against. Skated well, drew a penalty. 7/14=50% on the dot.

Taylor Hall trade saga becoming a fiasco, which should drive down his price in trade

  Taylor Hall trade saga becoming a fiasco, which should drive down his price in trade Anyone else thinking that the Taylor Hall trade saga has turned into the Taylor Hall trade fiasco, at least from a New Jersey perspective? Hall’s own team asked him this past weekend to sit out two games, presumably expecting he’d quickly be traded. Yet no trade materialized. That can’t be a good sign for New Jersey and for Hall’s trade value. The deeper we go into the season, the less Hall’s value, especially as a rental. The more complications that come up in moving him — and surely a major league complication came up to thwart a trade this weekend — the less his value.

They just have to find a way to be good enough to win. And that means sticking to a system Disturbing trend for Oilers : too many goals allowed last 10 games. Player grades , Games 21-30: Edmonton Oilers have been treading water for so long they're in danger of becoming waterlogged.

Instead, the Oilers somehow found a way to score twice in the period, despite generating only 12 The Flyers have played Edmonton twice this season, and in both games, the Oilers got the better of I'm sure the team was demoralized after carrying play in the second period only to lose even more

#39 Alex Chiasson, 5. Won a battle at the edge of the crease on Draisaitl’s powerplay goal, but lost one in his own end on the 5-4.

#41 Mike Smith, 1. He fought the puck and the puck won. Allowed 2 goals in each period, never facing more than 10 shots in any of them. Failed to catch an eye high wrist shot from distance on his first test, instead whacking the puck off of Greenway and into the net. Was beaten cleanly on the glove side for the next four tallies, just above the leather in all four cases. No chance at all on the final tally, a one-time rocket to the stick side by an uncovered opponent. But on a night the Oilers desperately needed a couple of big saves, none were forthcoming. His stretch of weak play has now entered its second month, during which time he has posted a save percentage of .870 or below in 7 of his last 9 appearances (all Edmonton losses). Heck, in three of them he was below . 7 70, including this one. 26 shots, 20 saves, .769 save percentage.

#44 Zack Kassian, 6. Set up nicely by McDavid but robbed by Kahkonen on the game’s first big chance. Made a nifty spinaround pass to Neal to earn an assist on the 6-5.

#74 Ethan Bear, 4. Caught flat-footed on both the second and third Minny goals. Jason Zucker burned behind him for a breakaway, then he was stranded in no man’s land to allow an odd-man rush on the 3-2. Made a couple of splendid stretch passes and a terrific backhand feed to McDavid on the 4-4. Overall a tough night for his pairing with Nurse, which ended with both players at -3.

#77 Oscar Klefbom, 6. Broke out of an extended even strength funk (on-ice for 0 goals for, 14 against in his previous 7 GP) when he took matters in his own hands to score the game’s first goal on a lovely give-and-go with Gagner. Made a great stretch pass to spring Neal for a breakaway. His pair with Larsson largely controlled play (shots were 14-6 Edmonton during Klef’s 24 even strength minutes). Led the team with 25:54 TOi and 7 shots on net. Likely a culprit on Nurse’s aborted line change when nobody on the bench seemed ready to hop over the boards, though that is an educated guess only. Drew a penalty, but took one himself to thwart a breakaway attempt after being caught in no man’s land. Lost a battle int he extended build-up to the 5-4.

NHL weekly betting preview: Urgency builds for slumping Oilers, Predators

  NHL weekly betting preview: Urgency builds for slumping Oilers, Predators Find line reports, best bets, and subscribe to push notifications in the Betting News section It was a bit of a frustrating weekend as we took one step forward and one step back before finishing at .500. A couple of nice 'dogs came through to help ensure a profit, but it wasn't as much as we'd have liked. Here's to a perfect week ahead, yeah? Game betting Colorado Avalanche at St. Louis Blues (Monday) The Blues continue to march along swimmingly despite a laundry list of injuries, having won six of their last nine. The Avalanche are dealing with some injuries of their own, particularly on the back end, but there's no stopping them right now.

Zach Parise, who didn’t play for the Wild in the playoffs due to a herniated disc in his back, will The Flyers are on a smaller- but - still -impressive five -game winning streak, which is notable also because The Maple Leafs are still learning Keefe’s system and Keefe is still learning his players ’ tendencies

Playing a blue line without four of six regulars, the Wild refused to get the puck deep. There’s not a coach in the league that wouldn’t have impressed upon his team to take advantage of such an inexperienced blue line by hitting them, cycling on them and tiring them out.

#82 Caleb Jones, 4. Third pairing struggled to get the puck moving north, even as Jones was the more successful of the twosome in that aspect. He was a moment late to the net-front on what became the game-winner, though in his defence he was expecting a pass from his partner-of-the-moment, Nurse, which never materialized. Did muster 3 shots on net.

#89 Sam Gagner, 6. His biggest contribution was a gorgeous, perfectly-timed cross-ice feed to Klefbom on the 1-0. Oilers outshot the Wild 9-3 during his 14 minutes, with 2 of those shots coming off Sam’s own stick.

#91 Gaetan Haas, 6. Waterbug pivot scored on a lovely deflection to kick-start the comeback. All three of his goals have come on tip-ins, and one fervently hopes Oiler teammates might take notice as it’s been something of a lost art on this club for years. But was a second late to the fair on the 6-4. Played 13½ minutes and led the Oilers in faceoffs taken (9/19=47%), one outcome of a low-penalty game. Had a strong shift in the game’s one 4-on-4 scenario and may be working his way into the overtime equation with his quickness and gamesmanship.

#93 Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, 6. Solid defensively, relatively quiet offensively. Excellent on the dot (11/15=73%). Fired a couple of shots and earned an assist on the game’s final goal.

#97 Connor McDavid, 5. Another multi-point night with a primary assist and a goal. Fed Draisaitl from the corner on the 2-2, and scored the 4-4 himself with a lightning-fast conversion of Bear’s fine pass, his only shot of the night. Set up Kassian for another glorious chance. But had coverage issues on the 1-1, had a turnover high in the offensive zone which played a role in the 4-2 goal (exposing the bad line change behind him) and another turnover which led to the Klefbom penalty. Just 2/11=18% on the faceoff dot.

At the Cult

STAPLES: Plenty of Oilers with plenty to prove vs. Wild

STAPLES: Franchise value of Oilers up by $405 million since Katz took over team, Forbes reports

McCURDY: Player grades as Oilers lose to Hurricanes

McCURDY: Tippett scrambing for answers during rough patch

STAPLES: Caleb Jones up, Joel Persson down

STAPLES: Can these Oilers avoid the ugly collapse of 2018-19?

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Player grades, Games 31-40: Trends behaving badly as Oilers crash to middle of pack .
It was a season that began with much promise for the Edmonton Oilers and their fans, but the early optimism has begun to fade. Through 40 games the Oilers have regressed to the mean, with 20 wins in 40 games and a .550 points percentage in a 5.61 league. For now they are hanging on to third in the mediocre Pacific Division, though only fifth in points percentage in a playoff race that has been joined by every team outside of California. Alas, the Oilers are “joining” it from the wrong direction as they slide from the top of the standings.

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