In this edition of NHL Talk, here are the top storylines with quotes from players, coaches, managers, and more.
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Capitals’ Oshie Ties Game With 1.8 Seconds Left in Regulation
Washington Capitals forward T.J. Oshie scored a clutch game-tying goal with 1.8 seconds left in the third period of a 4-3 overtime loss at the Edmonton Oilers on Wednesday. His late goal earned the Capitals a point in the standings, moving them within one of tying the Boston Bruins for the top wild-card spot in the Eastern Conference. Washington holds the second wild-card spot, ahead of the Columbus Blue Jackets by 13 points, so every point is vital for the Capitals for the remainder of the season to stay in the playoff picture.
“Just through experience, I have a pretty good feeling of how to hit that top glove side and threw it out there, and fortunately it made it in,” Oshie said. “So, real happy to get the point here. I’d like to have that play at the end back [overtime winner], but on a tough game last night [5-4 win at the Calgary Flames] and another tough one tonight, you always want to walk away with two [points], but I’m happy to get one.”
Oilers’ Malone Scores First Goal Since 2015
Edmonton Oilers forward Brad Malone scored his first goal since Dec. 3, 2015, or 67 games, as a member of the Carolina Hurricanes, in the Oilers’ 4-3 overtime win against the Capitals on Wednesday. His goal came at 10:31 of the third period to give the Oilers a 3-2 lead. In four appearances with Edmonton this season, he has two points (one goal, one assist).
“I don’t think it has really sunk in yet, to be honest,” Malone said. “It feels pretty awesome. I was just really happy that we got the two points at the end of the game there. It is tough to have an individual game like that and feel good about yourself when you don’t get the two points.”
Canucks’ Miller Tallies Four Points, Extends Point Streak to 10 Games
Vancouver Canucks forward J.T. Miller tallied a goal and three assists in a 5-3 win against the Montreal Canadiens on Wednesday. He now has points – seven goals, 14 assists – in 10 consecutive games, while the Canucks have won three in a row and eight of their last ten. Miller leads the team with 67 points (23 goals, 44 assists) in 56 games this season.
“We have one focus right now and that’s winning these games,” Miller said. “We should try to win every game at home, especially. It’s not out of the question. We’ll take it one game at a time, but we need these wins. We’re a desperate team. Every game from now on out should be easy to get up for.”
Canadiens’ Confidence Growing Under Head Coach St. Louis
Despite the Montreal Canadiens’ 5-3 loss to the Canucks on Wednesday, the team continues to show more confidence under its new head coach, Martin St. Louis. Since he took over behind the bench, the Canadiens have a 7-5-0 record after they started the season with an 8-30-7 record. In just 12 games, St. Louis is just one win shy of tying the team’s total wins through their first 45 games.
“We’ve been playing really good hockey, and I think we’re all very comfortable with our game, and we all believe in each other,” Canadiens forward Rem Pitlick said. “‘Marty has been talking about it from the beginning, swagger, and I think that we all understand that we can be a really good team, and we are a really good team, so we’re going to keep pushing forward.”
Tom Pepper is an NHL columnist at The Hockey Writers. He lives in Toronto and is a diehard fan of the St. Louis Blues.