NHL Final Score: Edmonton Oilers 3, Vancouver Canucks 2 – Overtime
Notes Heading In:
Reports of Swede Patrick Allvin being hired as the Vancouver Canucks new GM were verified prior to the game starting.
Alrightee then, here’s the latest comings and goings for the Canucks based on Covid protocol ins-and-outs.
Spencer Martin, who played the 2-1 shoot-out loss to the Florida Panthers on Friday night is back. He will start the game for the Canucks in net after testing negative repeatedly. A false positive forced him out of the games against St. Louis on Sunday.
Obviously Thatcher Demko remains out. The Vancouver Canucks number-one netminder is expected to be on the upcoming three-game road trip to Winnipeg, Calgary, and Chicago.
JT Miller, the Canucks leading scorer returns to the line-up against the Oilers after five days off, while forward Tanner Pearson goes out due to a positive Covid test. Pearson had three points over his last four games. He’ll be replaced by Justin Dowling.
2nd Period 1-0 Vancouver – Elias Pettersson (10) – Unassisted (14:26) Even Strength
2nd Period 2-0 Vancouver – Tyler Motte (6) – JT Miller (17:33) Shorthanded
3rd Period 2-1 Edmonton – Ryan McLeod (5) – Kris Russell, Slater Koekoek (6:33) Even Strength
3rd Period 2-2 Edmonton – Leon Draisaitl (29) – Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, Connor McDavid (10:24) Even Strength
Overtime 3-2 Edmonton – Connor McDavid (20) – Darnell Nurse (4:36) Even Strength 3-on-3
Speeeeeeed to burn.
The Canucks did a pretty nice job of keeping Connor McDavid from doing wind-sprints around them. There was an incredible outside-inside move straight-up on a right wing rush against Quinn Hughes 3:45 into the 1st period. The juke was so abrupt it tied Hughes into a turbo knot. McDavid cut in front but didn’t get a good shot off.
Later he drew a holding call against Canucks defenceman Brad Hunt at 10:32 of the 1st. He would give the D-men fits, but in this case it was a poor call as Hunt did a nice job of legally holding him off. It was a ‘Michael Jordan moment’, a superstar getting a call against a 3rd-pair part-timer.
At the end of the period he was off to the races again but the horn sounded as he gained the Canucks blueline.
The Canucks did a nice job containing McDavid in the 2nd period, keeping him outside and slowing him in transition.
In the third period the Oilers picked up the momentum off the McLeod goal and were relentless. It continued into a frantic overtime. McDavid scored that game winner racing to the net to deflect home a puck. He was too fast to catch.
The Canucks “goaltending situation” talk will start up after Martin’s performance Tuesday, coupled with his strong effort against the Florida Panthers on Friday night. Martin was “lights out” as they say. He faced 50 shots-on-goal in the game including nine in a lopsided overtime that the Oilers dominated.
Thatcher Demko has nothing to worry about obviously, but the chit chat will begin regarding how expendable Jaroslav Halak has become for some. Don’t get too excited folks, the Slovakian has a no-move clause in his one-year contract and the Canucks aren’t in a hurry.
Martin deserves the praise. He was busy, great, and calm handling the puck when he needed to move it.
He Said It:
““All those superstars, especially really elite guys, are extremely hard to read and it’s just going off instincts,” Martin said postgame. “He (McDavid) is playing at a higher level than I’ve probably ever seen, so it was cool to go up against him.”
Simmer’s Vancouver Canucks 3 Stars:
3) JT Miller – The Canucks leading scorer picked up an assist, played 24:38 of ice time, was all over the ice, shots, blocks, and hits, all while coming off a Covid protocol break. He got better as the game went along and it didn’t take too long to get his feel back.
2) Tyler Motte – Had the one shorthanded goal and was stopped on a breakaway for another in the 3rd period. Relentless and hard working in 21:25 of ice time. Had five shots on goal, a hit, and two blocked shots.
1) Spencer Martin – See section above. Great night for the 26-year-old. He shook off the one goal he probably didn’t like.