As they have done quite often lately, the Edmonton Oilers lit up the opposing goaltender on Sunday (April 3), putting half a dozen pucks behind John Gibson in a 6-1 win over the Anaheim Ducks at the Honda Center.
Tyson Barrie, Leon Draisaitl, Brett Kulak, Connor McDavid, Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, and Jesse Puljujarvi all scored for the Oilers, who jumped out to a 3-0 first period lead en route to winning their fourth straight game.
The Oilers are now 9-2-1 over the last four weeks, thanks largely to an explosive scoring ability that has resulted in 58 goals over the last 12 games. Here are four takeaways from Edmonton’s victory in Anaheim showing just how dangerous this team can be on offence.
Draisaitl Hits 50 and 100
After causing concern amongst Oilers fans when he appeared to hurt his leg early in the game, Draisaitl proved no worse for wear, picking up a pair of points in the late stages of the contest. With an assist on Kulak’s first goal as an Oiler at 12:13, he recorded his 100th point of the season, reaching the century mark for the third time in his career.
Then, less than four minutes later, Draisaitl scored for the 50th time this season, tying his career-high set in 2018-19, and joining Hall-of-Famers Glenn Anderson, Wayne Gretzky, and Jari Kurri as the only players in Oilers history to score 50 or more goals in multiple seasons. Even more impressively, he is just the 24th player in NHL history to record a second 50-goal, 100-point campaign in his career.
“I’m proud,” said Draisaitl during his post-game media availability. “I’m very happy about it, no question. But it also shows you how great my teammates are right? You know, they’re the ones that put me in these situations are the ones that get me the puck in the right moments.”
McDavid Scores His 40th
Not to be outdone by his fellow former Art Ross Trophy/Hart Memorial Trophy/Ted Lindsay Award-winning teammate, McDavid scored his 40th goal of 2021-22 on Sunday.
That leaves the Oilers captain just one goal short of his career-high of 41, established in 2017-18 and equalled in 2018-19. He is now the sixth player in Oilers history with at least three seasons of 40-plus goals, joining Anderson, Draisaitl, Gretzky, Kurri and Mark Messier.
Defencemen Pitch in For Oilers
Blueliners Barrie and Kulak each scored a goal and added two assists for the Oilers on Sunday. With three points, the former tied his season-high while the latter set a new career-high.
This was the second time this season that two Oilers defencemen recorded at least three points in a game, the first coming on Nov. 5, when Barrie (one goal, two assists) and Darnell Nurse (three assists) had three points apiece in Edmonton’s thrilling comeback 6-5 overtime win against the New York Rangers on the same night Kevin Lowe’s number was retired.
Before that, it had been over 20 years since multiple Oilers’ rearguards had three or more points in the same game: Sean Brown and Tom Poti each had one goal and two assists when Edmonton blasted the Calgary Flames 7-0 on Jan. 19, 2000.
Oilers Scoring Most in 3 Decades
Sunday marked the 10th time in the 2021-22 campaign that Edmonton has scored at least six goals, the most in 30 years, going back to when the Oilers had 12 games of six-plus goals in 1991-92.
Particularly notable is that five of those performances have come in the last 10 games, and with still 12 games remaining on their schedule, the Oilers are likely to add to that total.
Edmonton’s franchise record for games with six or more goals is 40 set in 1983-84. The Oilers had scored six-plus goals at least 11 times in each of their first 13 seasons, 1979-80 through 1991-92, but since then had not done it more than nine times in a single season until now.
Sharks Are Up Next
Edmonton is now just one point back of the Los Angeles Kings for second place in the Pacific Division. The Oilers will be at Crypto.com Arena to take on the Kings in a pivotal match-up on Thursday (April 7), but first, they will visit the San Jose Sharks on Tuesday (April 5) for the second stop on their three-game California road trip.
Brian is an Edmonton-based sports writer and broadcaster. His experience includes working as a sports reporter for the Edmonton Sun, where he covered the Edmonton Oil Kings 2013-14 Memorial Cup championship season.