The Anaheim Ducks were looking to keep positive momentum rolling after a dominating 5-0 win a couple nights ago when they took down the Vancouver Canucks. The game against the Edmonton Oilers marked the first time that the two teams had met since Anaheim’s win in Game 7 in the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs last season.
The Ducks had won three straight prior to tonight’s game against Edmonton, and they were able to push the game all the way to a shootout, despite having to kill two different penalties throughout the overtime period.
However, their three-game win streak would meet its end in the shootout, as the Oilers would get two of the three shots past John Gibson, with Ryan Nugent-Hopkins delivering the shootout game winner.
The game began with a tentative pace, as both teams seemed to be feeling the other out, resulting in only one shot on goal in the first three minutes. The game remained that way until the 6:45 mark when Darnell Nurse was forced into taking a delay of game penalty as he tried to clear the puck to get away from a pressuring Ryan Getzlaf.
The Ducks would not end up making the power play productive, despite the fact that they were facing the league’s worst penalty kill in the Edmonton Oilers. The Oilers would use the kill to generate pressure in Anaheim’s zone, generating a couple more shots on John Gibson at the midway point in the period.
The Oilers would receive the next power play of the game with Cam Fowler going off for hooking against Drake Caggiula at the 15:13 mark of the opening frame. The Ducks would have little issue killing off the Fowler penalty, save for one open chance in front of the net that was swept wide, keeping the game scoreless.
The 1st period came to a close with the score tied at zeroes, but the Oilers dominating in the shots on goal department by a count of 13-2. Possession and chances heavily favored Edmonton for the second half of the first period, leaving Anaheim on their heels looking to regroup heading into the second.
The second period began where the first had left off, with the Oilers dominating possession and controlling shot attempts.
The Ducks would get their first quality chance of the night as Kevin Roy was able to cleanly beat Cam Talbot over the shoulder. Unfortunately for Anaheim fans, the shot pinged off the post and ricocheted straight back out, out of danger.
The Oilers would get the next golden chance with Connor McDavid going in on a clean breakaway, but John Gibson was able to poke check the puck away right as McDavid made his move in front.
The Ducks would take over on possession for the next few minutes after the McDavid chance, bringing the Ducks back into the game and tilting the ice in their favor. However, this became short-lived as a 3-on-1 rush going into Anaheim’s zone resulted in Kris Russell opening the scoring in the game and giving the Oilers the lead with eight minutes remaining in the middle frame. 1-0 Edmonton.
The Oilers would get another power play as Nick Ritchie felt that desire to sit in the penalty box again, so he took a rather weak tripping call as Matt Benning was exiting the Oilers’ zone with the puck. The Ducks would not be burned by this, however, as they killed the penalty and returned to 5-on-5 hockey still trailing only 1-0.
The Ducks would then turn and get a power play of their own with just 40.2 seconds remaining in the middle frame, as Milan Lucic sat for slashing the hands of Rickard Rakell (how dare you Milan). The Ducks were unable to capitalize during the final 40 seconds, so they carried 1:20 of power play time into the final frame, trailing 1-0. Shots on goal still favored Edmonton, albeit by a slimmer margin, at 21-17.
The Ducks did not take long to capitalize on their remaining power play time in the 3rd period, knotting the game at one apiece after Jakob Silfverberg deflected a Cam Fowler shot past Cam Talbot just 18 seconds into the period. 1-1.
The Ducks used that momentum to ramp up the pressure early in the period, nearly taking a 2-1 lead on a few different occasions as the puck was loose in front of Talbot a few times consecutively. However, the Ducks were unable to jam it home, despite Cam Talbot looking pretty clearly lost.
The Oilers would go back on the power play with 15:09 remaining in regulation as Ryan Getzlaf sat for holding Connor McDavid. The Oilers could not capitalize on the power play, and Ryan Getzlaf returned to action on the ice without any damage done to Anaheim.
With just under four minutes remaining in regulation, hearts skipped beats for every Ducks fan as Getzlaf crashed into John Gibson and both seemed a little slow to get up. Somehow, the Oilers were unable to score during this sequence, as Getzlaf was still getting up off of John Gibson when a shot was fired towards the net. Luckily, Getzlaf was able to knock the puck away and keep the game tied at one.
With just five seconds left in regulation, Antoine Vermette was called for high-sticking, leaving the Ducks looking at carrying 1:55 worth of penalty kill time into overtime. Oh boy. Good thing the Ducks are really good at overti...hahahaha. Yikes.
The Ducks miraculously were able to kill off the penalty to Antoine Vermette to start the overtime period, despite the fact that Connor McDavid was able to free himself and hit the post behind John Gibson during the power play. The Ducks applied a little bit of pressure following the penalty, but were unable to get a shot past Cam Talbot.
The Oilers got a very lucky bounce off the corner boards that gave Darnell Nurse a wide open look in front of John Gibson. Cam Fowler slashed Nurse about as hard as he could to force the shot wide, giving the Oilers their second power play chance of the overtime period with just 21.9 seconds left.
Once again, the Ducks were extremely lucky to get out of it without picking the game-winner out from behind John Gibson, and on to the shootout they went.
Connor McDavid - X
Ryan Getzlaf - X
Mike Cammalleri - O
Rickard Rakell - O
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins - O
Jakob Silfverberg - X
Edmonton wins 2-1 in the shootout. The Ducks will be back in action on Saturday night when they take on the Calgary Flames for the second time in two weeks.