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RECAP: Canucks 2, Oilers 1 (OT)

by Marc Ciampa / Edmonton Oilers

VANCOUVER, BC – The Edmonton Oilers and Vancouver Canucks played to a deadlock for 64 minutes but in the final minute of overtime, it was Vancouver who prevailed by a score of 2-1. Edmonton outshot the Canucks 33-24 in the game but it wasn't enough to depart B.C. with two points.

“I thought it was a pretty evenly matched game. A couple teams that are in the same boat, coming out of the Christmas break with a handful of injuries and makeshift lineups. We had our fair share of opportunities, they had theirs. Neither of the power plays could click,” said Oilers head coach Todd McLellan.

“At the end of the night they got one by our goaltender, but it was a pretty evenly matched game. I liked a number of our players coming out of the Christmas break. I thought they had a little jump in their stride and made some plays. And then there was about five or six that I thought was pulling us down anchor-wise. And hopefully they give us better games tomorrow.”

On the winning play, Jannik Hansen teed up a blast from the right circle that beat Oilers starting goaltender Cam Talbot. The goal was Hansen's second of the night.

Edmonton carried the play early on in the game, keeping the puck deep in the Canucks zone for a majority of the opening 10 minutes of the contest. Shots on goal were 6-2 Oilers less than seven minutes in.

However, the Canucks had the game’s first real scoring chance. On a redirection, Brandon Prust chipped a cross-ice pass in the slot on net and it just narrowly missed, ringing the post behind Talbot.

With 7:05 to play in the opening frame, Edmonton scored to take the lead.

After Lauri Korpikoski picked up a puck that bounced high in the air, he chipped it over to Mark Letestu. Letestu corralled the puck in the slot and then wired it top corner behind Canucks starting goalie Jacob Markstrom for the goal.

"It was certainly a better road game than we've been playing," said Letestu. "We haven't been ahead on the shot clock or had very many good stretches as far as offensive hockey. Tonight there was some of it. I liked our start.

"It was a hard-fought game. Sometimes it comes down to overtime and they had the last best shot."

Shots on goal after one period were 13-6 for the Oilers

Vancouver came out flying to start the middle frame. Only 57 seconds into the period, Bo Horvat skated into the Vancouver zone on a mission by driving straight to the net. His backhand attempt from close-in was denied by Talbot and the rebound was also turned away.

Three minutes later, after the Oilers were unable to make a line change after an icing call, Vancouver made them pay. The Canucks put out their top line and Henrik Sedin spotted Jannik Hansen in front for a quick tap-in to tie the game up at 1-1.

Six minutes into the second, the Oilers had a flurry of chances in front of Markstrom but couldn’t convert as the line of Letestu-Hendricks-Korpikoski continued to be Edmonton's best on the night.

After a lengthy shift where the Oilers struggled to get out of their own zone, they were finally able to do so and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins tried to turn it into a goal at the other end of the ice. On his partial breakaway, he was slashed by Yannick Weber giving Edmonton the game's first power play with just over eight minutes to go in the period.

Vancouver went on the man advantage at the 16:55 mark for the first time after Draisaitl dumped Baertschi in front of the Oilers net.

The penalty expired but before the next whistle, Darnell Nurse received two minutes for holding which sent Vancouver's power play unit back on the ice with 28 seconds to go.

Shots in the second period were 11-9 for Vancouver. Overall through 40 minutes, Edmonton still had the edge on the shot clock at 22-17.

The third period began with the Oilers on the penalty kill for another 1:33 but Edmonton was able to kill it off.

At the eight-minute mark of the period, Draisaitl was hooked along the boards in the Canucks zone by Henrik Sedin giving the Oilers a power play opportunity to try and get some momentum back and perhaps re-take the lead.

Oilers rattled off three shots on that power play but could not convert. Shots were 26-20 in the game just past the midway point of the third.

90 seconds later, Edmonton went right back on the man advantage after Jared McCann hooked Hall behind the Canucks net.

During the power play, with 6:13 to go, a turnover at the Canucks blueline resulted in a Vancouver two-on-one with Adam Cracknell and Brandon Prust. After Talbot made the save, Cracknell jabbed him in the mask with his stick, causing Talbot's neck to snap back. The Oilers goaltender had to be tended to by the training staff but he ended up being well enough to stay in the game.

Shots in the third period were 8-5 for Edmonton. Overall through 60 minutes, it was 30-22 for the Oilers.

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