Connor McDavid scores 61st goal, Oilers beat Kings 2-0
EDMONTON, Alberta (AP) — Connor McDavid scored his NHL-leading 61st goal of the season and the Edmonton Oilers beat the Los Angeles Kings 2-0 on Thursday night for their third straight victory.
McDavid scored his 300th NHL goal, beating goalie Joonas Korpisalo with a wrist shot from the slot on a short-handed breakaway to make it 2-0 at 3:53 of the third period.
He pointed to the Oilers clamping down defensively.
“It is one thing to talk about it, it is another thing to go out there and do it,” McDavid said. “We talk about being defensive and playing hard and I felt you saw that tonight.”
McDavid became the first player in NHL history to have five 10-game point streaks in a season, breaking Wayne Gretzky’s record of four in 1986-87. McDavid also became the fifth player in league history to reach 300 goals and 500 assists before playing 600 career games, following Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Peter Statsny and Bryan Trottier.
Stuart Skinner made 43 saves for his first shutout of the season and second in the NHL, helping the Oilers move past the Kings into third place in the Western Conference. Edmonton is 12-2-1 in March.
“I felt pretty good,” Skinner said. “I think confidence grows as the team is doing such a good job in front of me. I think for a full 60 minutes that we just battled hard. Being able to get the two points is massive. We were so hungry to win every battle and I think that was very impressive to watch.”
The only other time Skinner had an NHL shutout was last season against San Jose, but he was sent down to the AHL the following day.
“We’re not going to do the same thing we did last year,” Oilers coach Jay Woodcroft said. “He’s mature beyond his years. He came up with the big save at the right time. That team shoots from everywhere, they’re volume shooters. But had some really good chances late in the third and Stuart was there.”
Evander Kane opened the scoring with 52 seconds left in the first period with his 15th of the season.
Korpisalo made 35 saves for Los Angeles. The Kings have lost two in a row after a franchise-record 12-game points streak.
“I thought it was a hell of a game, both teams played really hard and it came down to a bounce or a break or two and they were able to score,” Kings coach Todd McLellan said. “We had some real good looks and we ran into a hot goaltender and didn’t quite get it over the goal line, but I thought it was a heck of game.”
Kings: At Seattle on Saturday night.
Oilers: Host Anaheim on Saturday night.
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The Associated Press