The first period would end scoreless, with the visiting Canucks leading in shots 8-7. In the waning seconds of the frame, Edmonton had a spark of offensive life with their second line generating a dangerous chance. Jordan Eberle fed Milan Lucic in the slot, and the big winger hammered a shot off the pad of Vancouver goaltender Richard Bachman.
Edmonton finally broke open the scoring at 16:42 of the second frame. Connor McDavid stickhandled the puck into the slot and sniped his 25th goal of the season with deft skill and finish. Andrej Sekera and Leon Draisaitl each recorded an assist.
"The kid has got amazing speed, and when he's going that fast he's got a lot of poise," Bachman said of McDavid. "He's a dangerous player, and there's a reason he's one of the best in the world."
With the goal, McDavid became the first player in the NHL to reach 80 points this season.
Talbot made a big stop on Markus Granlund at the second period buzzer to keep his team on top by one heading into the locker room.
Talbot had to tighten things up in the third as the ice tilted in the Canucks favour early in the period.
"Talbs saved us a couple of times," said Oilers defenceman Oscar Klefbom. "He had a hell of a game."
Edmonton got the much-needed insurance goal at 15:22 of the final frame when Draisaitl sauced a pass across the ice to Mark Letestu on the far side. Letestu buried his career-high tying 14th of the season, assisted by the aforementioned Draisaitl and Klefbom.
The shutout is Talbot's sixth of the season and 36th victory between the pipes. Talbot became the first Oilers netminder since Tommy Salo in 2001-02 to have six shutouts in a season. 36 wins ties Salo for second most in Oilers history, four shy of Grant Fuhr's season record.
"Talbs was great, as he is most nights," said McDavid. "Tonight he stole the show, and we needed that. We weren't very good, especially in the third period. All the credit to him."
The Oilers end their eight-game home stand with a chance to make it four in a row on Monday when the Los Angeles Kings come to town.