Connor McDavid eclipsed 100 points and Alex Chiasson recorded his first 20-goal season, but the Oilers fell 6-3 to the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday
EDMONTON, AB - Connor McDavid eclipsed the 100-point mark for the third consecutive season with two assists, but the Oilers were unable to cap off a four-game home stand in victory after dropping a 6-3 loss to the New Jersey Devils on Wednesday.
Alex Chiasson surpassed the 20-goal plateau for the first time in his career with a powerplay goal in the first period that gave the Oilers the 2-1 lead, but a three-goal second period from the Devils spelt the end of Mikko Koskinen's night.
The Finnish netminder allowed four goals on 18 shots, before giving way to Anthony Stolarz who made 15 saves on 17 shots in relief.
"Our goalie had a tough night. He hasn't had many of those," Oilers Head Coach Ken Hitchcock said. "Every mistake ended up in our net, and we were too loose defensively and paid for it."
McDavid extended his point streak to eight games, but Leon Draisaitl's 14-game run came to an end following a pointless evening.
"We just took them lightly and took the game for granted," McDavid said post-game. "They work hard. They don't necessarily have the veterans in the lineup, but what they lack in experience they make up in effort."
The Oilers remain six points out of a playoff spot ahead of playing on Hockey Night in Canada this Saturday in Arizona against the Coyotes - one of the teams they're in direct competition with for a wild card spot.
"There's only a handful of games left and it's right there," defenceman Matt Benning said, citing the playoff race. "We're in this dressing room looking to get points every night, and I think tonight was disappointing. I don't know if we took them lightly, but they beat us to a lot of pucks tonight."
The contest started with an element of physicality, with Milan Lucic and Kurtis Gabriel setting the tone with a lengthy scrap before two minutes had passed on the scoreboard.
After killing the Oilers first powerplay, the Devils countered with a 2-on-1 that opened the scoring. The rebound from Kenny Agostino's shot fell behind Koskinen before sliding over the goal line for the Devils to take an early 1-0 lead 12:26 into the opening frame.
Benning turned provider to help the Oilers equalize just over two minutes later. The defender's net-bound shot was deflected home by Gagner for his fifth goal of the season.
The fightback continued for the Oilers with another man advantage, this time converted in front by Chiasson as a result of good positioning and a slick feed from McDavid. It was the right winger's 20th goal of the campaign, and McDavid extends his points streak to eight with the primary helper.
However, Chiasson would be in the box when Travis Zajac tied the game for the Devils with 17.2 seconds left in the first. Zajac dangled Koskinen after finding himself alone in front to level the score 2-2 heading into the break.
Koskinen proved sharp out of the intermission with two big pad saves on Stefan Noesen in quick succession before Klefbom was forced to take a holding the stick penalty. New Jersey then converted the power play, with Damon Severson wiring a wrist shot off the post and in past Koskinen from the point to restore the Devils' advantage.
The Devils were up a pair with 7:51 left in the second after Edmonton product John Quenneville unleashed a slap shot for his first goal of the season. It spelt the end of Koskinen's night, giving way to Anthony Stolarz after surrendering four goals on 18 shots.
Stolarz was beaten early when Kevin Rooney fired low glove past the recently-introduced netminder to make it a three-spot for the Devils.
The Oilers pulled one back before the break via Benning's one-timer delivered by McDavid with 41 seconds remaining in the middle period. The assist marked the captain cracking 100 points for the third-straight season.
A shorthanded goal from Blake Coleman sunk any potential Oilers comeback with 7:54 left in the third period.
The Devils snap a seven-game slide with eight players out due to injury, while rectifying a nine-goal shelling sustained against the Calgary Flames last night.
"For us we're kind of in a little bit of a playoff series here until the end," McDavid said. "When one doesn't go well, you have to shake it off and be ready to work for the next one and keep going. Obviously we missed a big opportunity here tonight, and it's frustrating."