Evan Bouchard scored 1:50 into overtime to give the Edmonton Oilers a 2–1 victory over the Colorado Avalanche on Tuesday night.
Head coach Jay Woodcroft said after the game, “The fans got their money’s worth”. “It was well played, not run-and-gun and taking unnecessary chances. It was a worker-like victory.”
The Oilers have won eight straight games to equal the second longest winning streak in team history. They are 13-0-1 in their last 14 games.
The Avalanche took an early lead when Oilers forward Nick Bjugstad tried to get the puck out of harm’s way, but inadvertently put it into his own goal past goaltender Stuart Skinner. Credited to Ben Meyers. Mattias Ekholm tied it 36 seconds later, stepping in a drop pass from Ryan McLeod for his ninth of the season.
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The Oilers outscored the Avs 17–8 in the second period with a four-minute power play after Devon Toews was flagged for high-sticking Zach Hyman. However after two the game remained tied 1-1.
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The Avalanche went on a power play with 5:31 remaining in the third. He shot six shots on man advantage, but could not find the target to go ahead. The Oilers had a shorthanded two-on-one, but Leon Draisitel’s pass intended for Ekholm was deflected.
Connor McDavid had an open look in overtime, but was hooked by Bowen Byram to give the Oilers the power play. Bouchard finished the match with a wrist firing and floored Alexander Georgiev.
“Connor (McDavid) actually called out and said, ‘fake a little bit’, and see what opens up. Lucky for me, the lane opened up and it went in,” Bouchard said of the goal.
“The powerplay is huge. When you get your chances, especially in overtime, you have to make the team pay. After that four minutes where we didn’t score, it gave us momentum and I thought we kept building it”, Bouchard he said.
It was the Oilers’ 27th road win of the season to set a new team record.
Skinner made 28 saves to improve to 28–14–5.
Skinner said, “It’s a good time for us to be rolling here.” “It is a good time to feel good about your game, to feel confident. I think everyone here is feeling the same way. It’s an unspoken feeling, but it’s important to have it, especially in the first round.”
“We’re focused on finishing as high as possible. We came into this building against the defending Stanley Cup champions, we expected to play like this,” Woodcroft said.
The Oilers, 49-23-9, will end the regular season at home against San Jose on Thursday (630 CHED, Face-Off show at 5:30 p.m., game at 7 p.m.).
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