The Oilers homestand continues with a game against the Minnesota Wild on Thursday night, at 7 p.m. MT. It can be seen on Sportsnet West or heard on 630 CHED and the Oilers Radio Network.
EDMONTON, AB – Taylor Hall and Leon Draisaitl ended their goal-scoring droughts, but the Ducks scored two empty-net goals en route to a 5-3 win.
“I think we played really well,” said Draisaitl. “I think we played a very competitive, strong game for 60 minutes. Obviously, it’s frustrating to leave the rink with no points.”
Cam Talbot made a timely pad save on former Oilers forward David Perron with a little over two minutes to play in the first period. Perron whipped a backdoor shot on net, but Talbot slid over and stuck out his right leg, making the stop.
With 50 seconds left in the first, it appeared as though Perron and the Ducks would have the last laugh of the opening frame. Talbot sprawled to cover the puck at the post but was hit by Perron as he skated by the side of the net. The puck trickled through underneath the glove and across the line.
The league took a long look at the goal to see if it was kicked in, and it was not. Then, Oilers Head Coach Todd McLellan challenged that Talbot was interfered with. The lengthy process resulted in the goal being upheld, despite protest from the Rexall Place crowd.
“Apparently, it wasn’t covered up,” said McLellan. “There’s a referee in the corner that explained to me the puck was still rattling around in his arms and we pushed the player in. So, goal. Obviously, I disagree with it.”
Perron was assisted by Ryan Getzlaf and Sami Vatanen.
The Oilers would get the equalizer quick following the intermission.
Draisaitl ended his drought, scoring his first goal since February 4, at 2:16 of the second period. With Anaheim’s Mike Santorelli in the box for hooking, Draisaitl burst down the wing and fired a short-side shot past Frederik Andersen for his 15th of the season. Lauri Korpikoski and Justin Schultz recorded the assists. With his helper, Korpikoski recorded his 100th career NHL assist.
It was an odd game in terms of long delays. There was the long goal review in the first, then a clock issue early in the second. Then, with a little over five minutes to play in the second, Talbot had an equipment issue that hit the pause button again. Out of that break in action, the Ducks took a 2-1 lead.
“It’s the longest game I’ve been a part of,” said McLellan, who watched his team take four penalties to add to the game delays.
“It was a long night,” said McLellan. “It mentally tested us to stay with it. I thought our guys did not a bad job. Their team did too. Their team is a much more mature group than ours. Some may have experienced that. Our guys actually stuck through it mentally fairly good. It wasn’t ideal if you’re a five-minute player or a 20-minute player. It’s not ideal.”
Jakob Silfverberg potted his eighth of the season at 14:54 of the middle frame to put Anaheim ahead. Ryan Kesler added the lone helper.
Another Oilers drought came to an end at 16:29 of the second. Hall crashed the crease and poked the puck past Andersen for his 19th goal of the year, his first since January 18. Jordan Eberle and Connor McDavid had the assists on the equalizer.
Anaheim surged ahead 3-2 at 5:35 of the third when Hampus Lindholm chipped a puck off Talbot’s pads and over the goalie. Rickard Rakell and Nick Ritchie each recorded assists.
The Oilers pulled Talbot late in the game, giving Andrew Cogliano a look at the wide-open net. The Ducks forward gave his team a 4-2 lead at 18:29 of the third.
The Oilers drew back within one with 1:07 left in the game, courtesy of an odd bounce. Benoit Pouliot would be given credit for the power-play goal, but the puck went in off Cam Fowler’s helmet.
Corey Perry iced the game with the Ducks second empty-net goal of the night at 19:47.
Edmonton next hosts Minnesota on Thursday at 7 p.m. MT.