When the Edmonton Oilers went into Vancouver last Saturday, and beat the President’s Trophy winning Canucks 4-1, most figured it was a case of the Canucks being on cruise control, and taking the 30th place Oilers a little too lightly. Vancouver’s coach Alain Vigneault wasn’t impressed with his team’s performance, and addressed the matter in Monday’s practice. A few Canuck players vowed fans would see a much better outing when the teams played in a re-match Tuesday in Edmonton. Vancouver elected to start their number one goalie Roberto Luongo this time, hoping for a better result. But the Oilers had other ideas.
Late in the first period, Edmonton’s Ryan Jones opened the scoring with a powerplay marker from Jordan Eberle and Jeff Petry to give the Oil a 1-0 lead. There wouldn’t be any other goals until late in the third, when the Oilers would once again connect with the man advantage. Magnus Paajarvi scored his 14th of the season from Linus Omark and Petry to stake the Oilers to a 2-0 lead. The Canucks, boasting the league’s most potent offense, were unable to get any pucks past Oilers netminder Devan Dubnyk, who earned his 2nd shutout of the season. A two game winning streak is always nice in a season where victories have been hard to come by, but two in a row against the leagues best team is that much sweeter. Vancouver captain Henrik Sedin had these comments to say after the game:
“Well it hasn’t been good enough. We all know that,” said Sedin. “It’s been a letdown after we claimed the President’s Trophy, for sure. It’s tough games to play but at the same time we know we have to get better here in the last two games.” – The Hockey News
The third period of this game was filled with penalties thanks to a controversial elbow by Vancouver’s Raffi Torres on Jordan Eberle. Eberle was able to get back up and appeared unhurt, but supplemental disciple is expected for Torres. He has a hearing scheduled with the NHL this week. Although there was no injury on the play, the elbow is exactly the kind of play the league is looking to eliminate. Eberle was examined by doctors after the hit, but was deemed to be clear of a concussion. Eberle spoke about the hit after the game:
“I don’t think I’ve ever had a concussion. Sometimes you feel symptoms the next day, but my head is fine. Maybe there’s nothing in there,” he said jokingly. He has a bruise on his left temple but isn’t sure how that got there. “He hit me on the right. Maybe it’s (the bruise) from my helmet.” – Edmonton Journal
The Oilers head into Calgary tonight to face the Flames, and would love to officially eliminate their arch rivals from playoff contention. Edmonton closes out their season on Sunday vs. the Colorado Avalanche. Their final home game is Friday against the Minnesota Wild.