McDavid hits 800-point milestone in Oilers' 4-2 comeback win over Flyers
EDMONTON — It was another milestone night for Connor McDavid and the Edmonton Oilers on Tuesday.
McDavid had two goals and an assist to cross the 800-point mark as the Oilers snapped a four-game skid with a 4-2 comeback victory over the Philadelphia Flyers. Edmonton won despite only mustering 10 shots through the first 40 minutes.
“You have to win games without your 'A' stuff,” McDavid said. “It’s cliché that good teams find a way to win when they don’t have their stuff and that was tonight. We did just enough to get a win.
"It’s going to take a lot more than that to win coming down the stretch, but give the boys credit.”
Leon Draisaitl had a goal and two assists to hit 700 career points and Tyson Barrie also scored for the Oilers (31-19-8), who have gone 10-1-5 in their last 16 games.
“At this time of year, no one really cares if it is pretty or not,” Draisaitl said. “We had played two good periods the last two games — the first two — and then kind of blew it in the third. We will take the two points and move on.
“It is a good win, a good character win for our group.”
All-star goalie Stuart Skinner made 24 saves to pick up his first win since Jan. 21.
“It was massive,” he said. “I am very happy we got the win. It feels like forever since I got a win, when I was in there. To have that feeling back, it feels really good.
“It was really nice feeling that the guys battled back for me and that we got the two points.”
Noah Cates and Owen Tippett replied for the Flyers (23-26-10), who have lost five of their last six. Carter Hart stopped 23-of-26 shots in the loss.
“I thought the team laid it out there. They did all the things we asked of them, and we played a hard game. We just couldn’t find a way to win,” said Flyers head coach John Tortorella.
“We were playing the right way. We did all the things to win a hockey game, and we don’t find a way to do it. But I think the group, through this trip, it’s been a long trip, have handled themselves very well.”
Entering the final frame down 2-1, Draisaitl capped off a three-way passing play with a sharp-angled shot 6:49 into the third period on the power play to tie the game.
Playing in his 545th game, McDavid became the fifth fastest player in NHL history to hit the mark behind Wayne Gretzky (352), Mario Lemieux (410), Peter Stastny (531) and Mike Bossy (525).
Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, who also assisted on the goal, set a new career high for points in a season (70).
McDavid scored the go-ahead goal 12:39 into the third as he banked a shot off diving defenceman Travis Sanheim and past Hart.
McDavid then put the game away with 2:25 remaining when the Flyers pulled Hart despite being on the power play. McDavid flipped the puck up high and after a couple of good bounces, it rolled in for a short-handed goal and his league-leading 44th.
The Flyers kick-started the scoring midway through the opening frame when Cates snuck a wraparound through Skinner’s legs for his ninth of the season.
Barrie evened the score with just three seconds to play in the first period. Draisaitl won a power play draw back to Barrie and he blasted home his 10th of the year and third in as many games.
Tippett restored Philadelphia's lead 11:37 into the second period when Kevin Hayes sent him a pass towards the net and redirected it home for his 16th.
Edmonton and Philadelphia came into the game with the two worst records in extra time in the NHL this season, with the Oilers sitting at 2-8 and the Flyers at 2-10. Only Dallas, Calgary, and San Jose have more overtime losses than the Flyers this season. Out with injuries for the Flyers were Zack MacEwen (jaw), Tanner Laczynski (lower body), Sean Couturier (back) and Travis Konecny (upper body). … Missing for Edmonton were Ryan Murray (back), Evander Kane (upper body) and Klim Kostin (illness). Defenceman Vincent Desharnais returned to the lineup after being called up from Bakersfield of the AHL.
The Oilers begin a short two-game road trip in Pittsburgh against the Penguins on Thursday.
The Flyers return home to face the Montreal Canadiens on Friday.
This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 21, 2023.
Shane Jones, The Canadian Press