The Oilers open their regular season schedule on the road against the St. Louis Blues on Thursday, at 6 p.m. MT. You can listen to it live on 630 CHED or watch on Sportsnet 360.
VANCOUVER, B.C. – The Oilers managed to take a lead in the third period after trailing since early in the first, however the Canucks tied the game and Daniel Sedin’s goal 29 seconds into 3-on-3 overtime lifted the home team to a 3-2 victory.
Sven Baertschi threw the puck out in front and Bo Horvat redirected it in to give Vancouver a 1-0 lead at 3:57 of the first period. Radim Vrbata recorded the second assist.
The Oilers had a bit of a scary moment in the first with Leon Draisaitl blocking a heavy shot and then showing discomfort. The second-year centre skated off gingerly but returned to the game his next scheduled shift.
Edmonton came out on fire in the second period, outshooting the Canucks 7-1 in the opening five minutes. Unfortunately for the visiting team, Canucks goalie Ryan Miller was on fire too. The Oilers couldn’t bury the equalizer in the second but the momentum was tilting in their favour. They outshot the Canucks 14-7 in the middle frame.
“It took us a little while to find our legs and wade into the game,” said Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan. “We didn’t start well, but there’s a lot of things we worked on in practice that showed up in the game today. We’ve got to be happy with that. We’re disappointed that we couldn’t close it out. We’ve got to learn to do that as a team.”
After a strong second period that didn’t result in any goals for the Oilers, Edmonton got the equalizer early in the third. Ryan Nugent-Hopkins set up Benoit Pouliot in front of Miller and he buried at 3:08. Teddy Purcell recorded the second assist.
“Nuge and Ted are such great playmakers and they skate really fast so my game for me is being fast too. We get along together on the ice and off the ice. It makes our job a lot easier,” said Pouliot.
The Oilers took their first lead of the game at 17:19 of the final frame. Nugent-Hopkins capitalized on Purcell’s 2-on-1 feed to make it 2-1.
The Canucks answered back at 18:04 when Jannik Hansen put away a puck that trickled through the pads of Talbot. That score sent the game to 3-on-3 sudden death overtime.
The Sedin twins are about as dangerous as any when it comes to the power play and overtime. They proved their prowess in 3-on-3, with Daniel Sedin scoring the game-winning goal just 29 seconds into overtime. His brother, Henrik, set him up.
The Oilers finish exhibition play 6-1-1 and open the regular season on Thursday in St. Louis.
“We’ll be ready,” said Pouliot. “We have a few days now to do a few things in practices. I’m sure we’ll need to fix a little bit of stuff too and we’ve got the time to do it. We’re only playing Thursday, so we’ll have a good week hopefully and we’ll be ready.”