Leon Draisaitl posts four goals and an assist and Connor McDavid follows suit with a five-point night as the Oilers blow by the Nashville Predators with five goals in the third period
NASHVILLE, TN - It happened in an instant.
Over a five-minute span in the third period, the Oilers were relentless.
The Oilers couldn't seem to find separation in the first 40 minutes of Monday's contest with the Nashville Predators after letting slip two separate leads -- including when the home side bit back with two goals in a 14-second span of the second period and Head Coach Dave Tippett took his timeout.
"I said take a breath and we're going to be fine here," Tippett said post-game. "Let's figure this out in a hurry and let's get back to work."
In the final 20 minutes, the Oilers made the goals rain.
Five goals in 5:13 of the third period marked the fourth-fastest five-goal span in franchise history as the Oilers blew the roof off the Bridgestone Arena in an 8-3 smashing of the Predators.
"Those nights don't happen all the time," Leon Draisaitl, whose stat line on the season now reads 43 goals and 107 points, said. "Sometimes pucks just bounce your way a little bit and you capitalize on chances that we maybe didn't throughout the year."
Of the eight Oilers goals, Draisaitl scored four of them -- including three in the third period -- as part of a five-point night alongside his captain Connor McDavid, who registered a goal and four assists.
"I've been saying it for five years now," McDavid said. "He's an amazing player and it's nice that he's finally getting some credit."
The Dynamic Duo helped the Oilers complete the season sweep of the Predators and now have a combined 14 goals and 25 points in their last five games against Nashville.
"It was a good team game," Tippett said. "The big guys obviously capitalized on chances, but all the way through I thought we competed hard. We didn't give up a tonne and got the win."
Darnell Nurse and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins each had three assists on the night, and Kailer Yamamoto had a goal and assist in his return from an ankle injury on the Oilers second line that picked up where it left off after going for three games without its 'little water bug'.
"It's big. I think it shows the importance of Yamo," McDavid, deflecting praise to Monday's lineup re-addition, said. "He comes in and just bounced our whole lineup. He did so much for that line."
The Oilers improve to 14-5-3 with Yamamoto in the lineup and sweep the season series with the Predators, improving to 35-23-8 and 78 points on the year.
Beneath the celebration of an eight-goal outpouring in the Oilers dressing room is a discomfort in giving up an advantage on consecutive nights. While there's something to celebrate, there are still details of the game the Oilers players are keen to iron out.
"That's the second night in a row where our second period needs to be better," Nurse said. "Through our own mistakes, we gave them a couple of goals. But that's a good team that has a lot to play for at this time of the year too.
"It's something to look back at and build off of, but our third period we came out and committed to the game plan, committed to each other, and found a way to capitalize on our opportunities."
It'll last a long time in the minds of the Oilers, but it'll be put to good use on Tuesday when they visit the Dallas Stars for the second of a back-to-back -- a situation this season where the club is 6-1 in the second contest.
"This time of the year, every game you come into, it's important," Nurse said. "Every game you come into is a playoff game with a playoff mindset. We move on to the next one tomorrow night."