The power play fizzled during the regular season (16.7 percent, 25th) and did little damage in the playoffs. And despite having so many brand-name stars in the lineup, the Sharks’ power play was weak, ranking just 25 overall in the National Hockey League.
After a disappointing overtime loss in the opener, the young Edmonton Oilers proved to be quick learners.
“I feel like every game is going to be ramped up more and more”, said San Jose’s Joel Ward.
Sports has a odd way of coming full circle on a guy. “It was such a good game by both teams and what an ending for us, it was great”.
After McDavid’s goal, the Sharks had to chase the game.
They will be available at Game 2 on Friday at the north LRT entrance on a first-come first-serve basis, two hours before puck drop.
“We were confident we could go out and turn things around (after the first period)”, said Logan Couture, who played with a full cage to protect a suspected fractured jaw, while Joe Thornton (knee) did not dress. “And the other thing I thought they did well, they were five or seven seconds ahead of us with every change, so they caught us exhausted a lot of times and took advantage of us, hemmed us in”. When he was repeatedly asked how he felt, he repeatedly answered, “same as yesterday”. His familiarity with the Sharks’ roster could be an advantage for the Oilers in what will likely be an emotional series.
“It’s the playoffs, it’s physical stuff”, DeBoer said. With Leon Draisaitl riding shotgun, McDavid has helped Edmonton back to the playoffs for the first time in more than a decade and he’s not alone.
“I thought it was a gutsy performance by him”, DeBoer said. “If we keep playing this same way, we will win the next game here, too”.
“We’ve been a disciplined team all season long but last night was one of those nights where we took more penalties then we usually would”, said Gretzky”. We’re not going to change a lot as a team. Edmonton can tie the series with a victory Friday. Kassian scored 42 seconds into the second when Sharks forward Joe Pavelski lost control of the puck at the Oilers blue line. “They did a heck of a job and that’s what won us the game tonight, especially with two shorthanded goals”. Everyone in this city is excited and so are we. He also took an undisciplined slashing minor in the third period, retaliating on a check from Timo Meier, and was credited with a game-high four giveaways. He’ll present another problem for the Sharks. Defenseman Brent Burns is the leading candidate for the Norris Trophy as he topped the team in points (76), goals (29) and assists (47). I don’t think it was an accident he led the league in playoff scoring a year ago.
The Oilers were hoping their power play would play a major factor in this series, but so far their penalty killers are getting all the ice time.
“Tonight we were just committed to doing it a certain way and we didn’t really get away from it”, he said.