NHL

NHL: Oilers beat Blackhawks for 8th straight win

By Sports Desk December 13, 2023

Stuart Skinner turned aside 22 shots and Connor McDavid had a pair of assists to lead the Edmonton Oilers to their NHL season-high eighth consecutive win, 4-1 over the Chicago Blackhawks on Tuesday.

Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Sam Gagner, Leon Draisaitl and Zach Hyman scored to help the Oilers notch their longest winning streak since their franchise record-tying nine-game run to close out last season.

Defenseman Evan Bouchard set up two goals to extend his point streak to 12 games. He has five goals and 13 assists during the streak, the second longest by a defenseman in Oilers history, trailing Paul Coffey’s 28-game run in 1985-86.

Rookie Connor Bedard scored his team-leading 12th goal as the Blackhawks lost their seventh in a row on the road.

 

Boeser has hat trick in Canucks’ win

Brock Boeser scored three straight goals for his second hat trick of the season to power the Vancouver Canucks to a 4-1 victory over the visiting Tampa Bay Lightning.

Boeser scored twice in the second period and completed his fifth career hat trick in the third. His 21 goals tied him for the league lead with Toronto’s Auston Matthews.

Thatcher Demko made 28 saves and Andrei Kuzmenko had the other goal for Vancouver.

Brayden Point scored for the Lightning, who had won three of four.

 

Matthews’ big game propels Maple Leafs

Auston Matthews scored two goals and set up two others and Martin Jones won his first start for Toronto in the Maple Leafs’ 7-3 victory over the New York Rangers.

Conor Timmins, Calle Jarnkrok and David Kampf also scored for the Maple Leafs, who have points in seven straight games (5-0-2).

Matthews’ two goals gave him 21 on the season, tied with Vancouver’s Brock Boeser for the NHL lead.

Blake Wheeler had a pair of goals and Mika Zibanejad scored a power-play goal as New York lost for the third time in four games.

Jones, signed as a free agent last summer, stopped 28 shots in his second appearance of the season.

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    Vladimir Tarasenko and Sam Bennett also scored for the Panthers, who can wrap up the franchise’s first Stanley Cup title in Game 4 in Edmonton on Saturday night.

    Florida carried a 4-1 lead into the third period, but Philip Broberg scored at 6:02 and Ryan McLeod made it a one-goal game with 5:17 remaining.

    The Oilers, however, could not beat Sergei Bobrovsky again and now face the daunting task of trying to win four straight games to bring the Stanley Cup back to Canada for the first time since 1993 – months before the Panthers’ inaugural season.

    Only four teams in league playoff history (1975 New York Islanders, 2010 Philadelphia Flyers and 2014 Los Angeles Kings) have won a series after losing the first three games and only once in the final (1942 Toronto Maple Leafs).

    Bobrovsky finished with 32 saves to win his sixth straight start. He allowed more than two goals for the first time during that span.

    The Panthers showed no ill effects from waiting to fly from South Florida to Alberta, a decision that was questioned when their plane was delayed by storms and got in a few hours late Wednesday – less than 24 hours before puck drop.

  • Panthers take 2-0 lead in Stanley Cup Final Panthers take 2-0 lead in Stanley Cup Final

    Evan Rodrigues had two of three Florida Panthers goals in the third period as the Eastern Conference champions took a 2-0 lead on the Edmonton Oilers in the Stanley Cup Final with Monday's 4-1 win.

    Niko Mikkola also scored and Aaron Ekblad had a game-sealing empty-net goal in the final minutes as the Panthers moved two wins away from the franchise's first Stanley Cup title.

    They did so by keeping Connor McDavid and Edmonton's high-powered offence in check for a second straight meeting. After being dealt a 3-0 loss in Saturday's opener of the best-of-seven series, the Oilers managed just seven shots on goal over the first two periods of Game 2 and 19 for the night.

    Florida did sustain a key injury in Game 2, however, as captain and top-line centre Aleksandar Barkov did not return after taking an elbow to the head from Edmonton's Leon Draisaitl midway through the third period. 

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    Despite Florida owning a 22-7 shot advantage through the first two periods, the teams were locked in a 1-1 tie until Rodrigues stole an attempted clearing pass from Edmonton's Evan Bouchard in the Oilers' end and whistled a shot past goaltender Stuart Skinner 3:11 into the third.

    Rodrigues struck again on the power play created by Draisaitl's roughing penalty on Barkov with 9:28 remaining, as he redirected a pass from Anton Lundell into the Edmonton net for a 3-1 Florida lead with 7:34 left.

    Oilers coach Kris Knoblauch pulled Skinner for an extra attacker with under seven minutes to go, and the move gave Edmonton essentially a two-man advantage when Florida defenceman Oliver Ekman-Larsson received a delay of game penalty for shooting the puck into the stands with less than five minutes remaining.

    The Panthers killed off the infraction, however, then ended any hopes of an Edmonton comeback when Ekblad scored into the vacant net with 2:28 left to play.

    Florida had the game's first prime scoring opportunity when Oilers forward Warren Foegele received a five-minute major penalty and an ejection for a knee-to-knee hit on the Panthers' Eetu Luostarinen midway through the first period.

    The Panthers couldn't capitalise, however, and the sides were soon 4-on-4 when Ekman-Larsson was called for tripping during the extended power play.

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    Florida drew even midway through the second period when Mikkola fired a drop pass from Lundell past Skinner.

    Bobrovsky finished with 18 saves, while Skinner stopped 25 of 28 shots.

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    Sergei Bobrovsky continued his red-hot play with 32 saves and Carter Verhaeghe and Evan Rodrigues scored to lift the Florida Panthers to a 3-0 victory over the Edmonton Oilers in Game 1 of the Stanley Cup Final on Saturday night.

    Bobrovsky was the story as the Oilers outshot the Panthers 32-17. He turned in one of the most memorable playoff goaltending performances in recent history, denying multiple breakaways and even managed to make saves without his stick for 30 seconds.

    Over his last four playoff games, the 35-year-old Bobrovsky has stopped 101 of 106 shots for a .953 save percentage.

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    The Oilers were shut out in the playoffs for the first time since June 2, 2022, against Colorado.

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