Connor McDavid notched a goal and a career-high four assists while Mikko Koskinen shut the door with 49 saves in a 6-3 thrashing of the Philadelphia Flyers
EDMONTON, AB - There's no streak like a new streak.
After having their five-game season-opening win streak snapped at the hands of the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday, the Oilers wasted no time beginning anew in explosive fashion by thrashing the Philadelphia Flyers 6-3 on Wednesday to improve their overall record to 6-1-0.
You can once again thank the Dynamic Duo of Connor McDavid and Leon Draisaitl, who extended their early influence at the top of the NHL's scoring race by combining for eight points on the night.
The Oilers captain recorded a goal and four assists to improve his league-leading total to five goals and 12 assists and become the third player in the last 26 years alongside Wayne Gretzky and Mario Lemieux to record 17 points in his first seven games.
Draisaitl remains hot on his tail with 15 points (six goals, nine assists) after adding a pair of goals and a helper.
"We've played from behind, we've played a little bit with a lead, but I liked how we bent but didn't break there in the second," McDavid said post-game. "We held strong and found a way to get a couple there to give ourselves some breathing room."
Despite a waterfall of offence from the Oilers with six goals on 22 shots, goaltender Mikko Koskinen held his own brilliantly between the pipes with a career-high 49 saves on 52 shots in a lopsided affair on the shot clock.
"Hopefully that's going to happen every night," Koskinen said of the offensive assistance. "Otherwise I'm going to be exhausted."
For Oilers Head Coach Dave Tippett, the story was his netminder and the lessons that can be taught from the game's low moments from his side.
"Should've been the first, second, and third star," Tippett said of Koskinen. "It wasn't a 6-3 game or a 6-1 game. The score was that, but it wasn't that kind of game."
"We've already talked about it as coaches - this is a really good teaching one just because you can't play like that and expect to be a playoff team."
McDavid and Draisaitl combined for the opening goal on the first shot of the game 1:13 into the opening frame, and the Bear roared for the first time this season to restore the Oilers advantage before the intermission with 4:52 on the clock by sniping low glove on Sherwood Park, Alberta product Carter Hart from the slot.
Brandon Manning got in on the rout in the third period, wiring home his first of the campaign in his first appearance of the season against his old club after drawing into the lineup when news broke of Joel Persson having to miss the next week to 10 days due to concussion protocol.
"He was fine. He was good playing against his old team," Tippett said of Manning. "I thought he jumped in there and gave us some quality minutes."
McDavid, with a knack for showmanship, provided another highlight-reel goal following Bear's tally in the second frame by chasing down Kris Russell's airborne clearance, alluding the Flyers defender, and flicking a backhand past Hart to end the local boy's night before the Oilers opened the floodgates with the next three goals.
"I saw (Russell) flick it and it was high," McDavid described. "You're just trying to gauge where it's going to go, and it ended up being in a perfect spot right behind the d-man. It put the d-man in a tough spot, and I just tried to beat him there and get a shot on net."
Defenceman Oscar Klefbom picked up the secondary helper to record his 100th-career assist in the NHL.
On a night billed to be a battle of special teams with both sides' units operating at a top-10 pace early in the season, it lived up to those expectations despite the Oilers capitalizing four times at even strength.
Two first-period power-play opportunities for the Flyers set the stage for Jakub Voracek to score twice for the Flyers with the man advantage, but the Oilers responded by going 2-for-2 to improve their power-play percentage on the year to 45.5 percent (10-for-22).
"I think special teams in general have been good," McDavid said. "Penalty kill gave up a couple tonight, but we were good when we needed to be. Especially early there. The power play's been able to find a couple which is good, and we have to keep that rolling."
The Oilers conclude a mini two-game homestand on Friday against the Detroit Red Wings.