80% of me wants an Oilers win but if we have to lose one, and we will eventually, I'm okay with it being against Anderson and the Sens.
— Ben (@Ben_in_yeg) October 31, 2016
Not upset to see Craig Anderson shut out the Oil tonight.
— Avry's Sports Show (@Avry) October 31, 2016
I guess we can call this one satisfying on the emotional level. All the best to Nicholle Anderson, Craig, and their supports.
Now for the recap.
The story of this game is
– oh, sorry, I may have dozed off.
But don’t worry, I wasn’t alone – the ice on the Oilers side was full of players who looked like they were still shaking off some afternoon naps. Maybe too much Halloween candy? Despite four power plays, the Oilers didn’t generate any offense; the Ottawa PK walked all over them. Lots of dump-and-chase routines, sloppy passing – especially in the neutral zone – and kind of weirdly-placed intensity.
Time for a reset before a five-game road trip!
– McDavid gets his first end-to-end rush and uses his speed to… try a wraparound. It did not work. (One of my brother’s friends used this move extensively when they were kids. I cannot watch a wraparound without thinking of Tyler Krause.)
– Draisaitl draws the first penalty. Oilers can’t control rebounds, have some sloppy positioning and spend a lot of time in and out of the Senators’ zone. Drai is skating hard, but is a perfect example of what I mean by “weirdly-placed intensity” – frantic, not focused.
– Halfway through the first, Senators still don’t have a shot. Unfortunately, that’s not because the Oilers have been stellar. I’m ready for a more exciting game, y’all.
There is NO atmosphere in here tonight.
— Terry Jones (@byterryjones) October 31, 2016
– No atmosphere tonight? Well, we don’t really have a hockey game yet, so that’s fair. I’m watching from home. My couch has lots of atmosphere – I’ve got an Oilers blanket on it.
– Second Oilers powerplay of the game, but they don’t deliver on this one, either. Then Kassian and Borowiecki get into it (Kassian’s feeling scrappy!) but they hug more than they punch. 5m each, so they’re off for the end of the period.
– Brassard takes down McDavid in a pretty frantic but effective move. Oilers are back on the powerplay.
Brassard took an “oh shit McDavid” penalty
— Kris (@WildcardKH) October 31, 2016
– The Oilers powerplay just lets the Sens go straight into their own zone, because why the hell not. The powerplay just kind of fizzles out as the period ends. Only 11 shots (7 Edm, 4 Ott) made it through in the first.
– The most entertaining part of the first few minutes is when a Senator steps out of line on a face-off in the Oilers zone – three Oilers pointed at him like kids in a classroom. Shots currently in Ottawa’s favour – evened up at 8 apiece about four minutes into the period.
– The commentators over here are debating whether “shone” is a word. “Shouldn’t it be shined?” Apparently even they aren’t that into this hockey game. Don’t worry, they’ll be back in a few minutes to clear all this up for you. I know you care.
– Nugent-Hopkins gets a chance, but is successfully wrapped up – his shot takes out Ceci’s stick but dribbles to Anderson. Then Draisaitl sends a good pass off to Puljujarvi for a shot, but there’s no follow-through.
– McDavid gets a play started that leads to a great chance for Eberle, but Anderson comes out and stops it aggressively. Oil retain possession. McDavid sends another beautiful pass to Lucic but Anderson shuts it down. Oilers get a bit of pressure, but nothing really happens. No sparks tonight.
– Lucic, Draisaitl, and Puljujarvi on a line together now. Maybe some new chemistry?
– Annnnd Mike Hoffman scores at 12:18 of the second, for his first goal of the season and the first goal of the game. (After Larsson loses the puck, the Oilers defense kind of just falls out of shape again and stares at it.)
Ferraro was just talking about how Hoffman needed a goal. BLAME RAY!
— Twitch Dot TVs MurtBunch (@JSBMjeanshorts) October 31, 2016
Oilers went 245:57 without trailing.
— Reid Wilkins (@ReidWilkins) October 31, 2016
– Right after the goal, Lander gets called for hooking and we’re on a penalty kill. Hoffman rings a big one right off the post. Nuge is playing stellar – so nice to see him solid defensively. Good contributions to the penalty kill. Overall, Oilers are not getting there fast enough to get control or get the puck out, but successfully kill the penalty.
– Karlsson pretty much simultaneously hooks and holds and slashes McDavid in front of the ref, but no call. Come on, McDavid – let’s show him by scoring like five goals. Yes?
I can see how the ref missed the call. He was looking right at it. @nhl @PR_NHL pic.twitter.com/a0zNCn023s
— Woodguy (@Woodguy55) October 31, 2016
– Turns out, no. Hoffman gets some more shots, Gryba catches one on his stick. Puljujarvi tries a McDavid-style rush, but he turns it over at the blue line. To his credit, he does immediately turn around and go back for it, kind of seal-diving to reach for it and break up the play. A couple of tries and we are at the end of the period. Shots 19-15 Oilers but score 1-0 Senators. Maybe this will inspire some more energy for the third.
Karlsson be all like, "I wuv you Connor!" pic.twitter.com/uBF4u62Ko1
— Oilers Nerd Alert (@OilersNerdAlert) October 31, 2016
– We start the third and almost immediately the Senators’ Tom Pyatt gets a great chance. Thank you, Talbot.
– Nurse, Ebs, McDavid, Drai, Gryba kind of try to do things. Gryba then pretty much loses it and Talbot goes way outside of his net. I can’t ever see goalies charging forward without thinking the worst, but hey, maybe Talbot should try to score this game. That would be exciting.
– The intensity is higher than it’s been all game – unfortunately, that is not saying too much. Letestu gets offside, Smith runs straight into him after the whistle and Maroon heads over for some words. Nurse takes a holding penalty on Ceci, then starts scrapping. He is not impressed at all with the call. Second powerplay for the Senators.
– Unlike the powerplay, our penalty kill isn’t looking terrible – Letestu even makes a brief attempt at another shorthanded goal (nothing doing). As soon as Nurse gets back on the ice, he rushes to the Senators’ zone but gets hauled down.
– 10 minutes left in the third. McDavid and Lucic start to generate a bit of pressure.
Remember that time Smytty stayed out for like half the 3rd period to try to break a record? Can we do that with Connor to try to win?
— Kyla J Lane (@KylaJLane) October 31, 2016
– Oilers get another shot on the PP (hooking) but almost instantly end up in their own end, and then play around with the puck a little while before getting their heads in the game. The crowd is a bit louder now, which is nice to hear.
– Some pucks are going Anderson’s way, but he covers ground nicely. He’s at 35 saves with 4:45 left in the third. Under 2 minutes left, and Talbot leaves the net.
– 1:11 left, Oilers call time out. After some solid Oilers pressure that felt like it could have turned the whole thing around, Bobby Ryan ends up with the empty-netter for insurance.
So, the Oilers fall 2-0 to the Senators. Still 7-2-0 though, and that’s something!
Kjell called Oilers to win in his game day blog, so I guess we already know who to blame for this. But I think we can generally graciously nod to the significance of the victory for Craig Anderson, take heart in our standings, and brace ourselves for the longer road trip ahead.
Tonight's @Molson_Canadian Three Stars:
⭐️⭐️⭐️ Mike Hoffman (GWG)
⭐️⭐️ Cam Talbot (20 saves)
⭐️ Craig Anderson (37 saves)#OTTvsEDM
— Edmonton Oilers (@EdmontonOilers) October 31, 2016
Anyway, I need to spend my energy being jealous of my parents. They’re going to New York to see the Oilers meet up with both the Rangers and the Islanders next week.
Next up: Matthews vs McDavid, this Tuesday.