Advertisement

Connor McDavid breaks scoring drought with 3-2 winner over St. Louis Blues

EDMONTON — Connor McDavid picked the perfect time to rediscover his scoring touch.

McDavid scored the overtime winner and added a pair of assists as the Edmonton Oilers bounced back from another dreadful start to defeat the St, Louis Blues 3-2 on Wednesday.

McDavid danced past a couple of defenders before chipping a shot past Blues goalie Jordan Binnington 4:34 into the overtime session. McDavid scored his 22nd to snap a 10-game drought without a goal, recording a ridiculous 25 consecutive assists between goals.

“There was no one to pass to,” McDavid said, laughing about having to put the puck in himself. “There was not much going on that play. I just tried to get it to the net somehow and fortunately that went in.”

“The timing was excellent,” added Oilers head coach Kris Knoblauch of McDavid finally getting a goal. “He’s been doing everything but scoring and he’s been on the scoresheet two, three times almost every single night through that stretch. And wow, what a goal he provided in overtime.”

Zach Hyman had the other two goals for the Oilers (35-20-2) who have won two in a row and have gone 29-8-1 in their last 38 games.

Hyman’s second goal was his 40th of the season, a career high.

“I’m so happy for him,” McDavid said. “He is a guy who brings it every single day with a positive attitude and a smile on his face. Even when things aren’t going well, he shows up and is the same every day. It is great to see him get rewarded. He has been playing great this year. He’s banging in goals left, right and centre. It has been great for our team.”

Robert Thomas and Pavel Buchnevich replied for the Blues (30-26-3) who have lost three in a row and five of their last six.

“Tough back-to-back for us, getting in late and playing a team that is so fast and dynamic,” Thomas said. “I think we did a really good job, I don’t think we can be upset with ourselves, we were in that game right to the end, we did a ton of good things and had our chances."

The Blues had a fast start to the game, scoring on the first shot of the game just 2:19 into the opening period. Awarded an early power play, Blues forward Thomas picked the top left corner past Oilers goalie Stuart Skinner with a wicked wrister from the top of the circle for his 20th goal of the season, tying his career high.

St. Louis added to its lead on its third shot coming 4:49 into the first period as Jordan Kyrou made a nice pass from behind the net to allow Buchnevich to score his 24th on a point-blank shot.

Edmonton got one back on a power play of its own with 1:44 remaining in the first frame as McDavid fed a pass through to Hyman in tight and he sent his team-leading 39th past Binnington. It was Hyman’s sixth consecutive game with a goal. McDavid extended his home-game point streak to 24 games, his personal-best streak of that ilk.

The Oilers tied the game up five minutes into the second period as McDavid sent it back to Hyman on a two-on-one and he shovelled in his second of the game and eighth in the last six. It is the first time in Hyman’s career that he has hit the 40-goal mark, becoming the 13th player in Oilers history to do so.

The teams traded chances four minutes into the third period as Edmonton defender Brett Kulak rang a shot off the cross bar and then Skinner was forced to deny Zachary Bolduc the other way.

Thomas then had a short-handed breakaway, but had his pocket picked from behind by Ryan Nugent-Hopkins before he could get a shot away, helping send the game to the eventual extra session.

Binnington said McDavid’s overtime goal was a tough one to allow, but there were still plenty of positives on the night.

“He went wide and kind of chipped it back far side and it kind of got a lot of my jersey, which is kind of weird, but sometimes bounces go like that when a guy works that hard, it happens,” he said.

NOTES

The Blues came into the game having gone 4-1-1 in their last six road games in Edmonton and having won eight of the past 12 meetings against the Oilers overall … Oilers blueliner Oilers Evan Bouchard came into the contest with an NHL-high 89 shot attempts of 145+ km/hour this season … With an assist in the second period, Bouchard hit 57 points on the season, the most by an Oilers defenceman since Paul Coffey had 67 points back during the 1986-1987 campaign.

UP NEXT

Blues: Return home to face the Minnesota Wild on Saturday.

Oilers: Head on the road for a one-game trip to play the Seattle Kraken on Saturday.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 28, 2024.

Shane Jones, The Canadian Press